Defying the serio..." /> Book Distribution Climbs 34.5% in 1975 |

Book Distribution

Published on May 1st, 2023 | by


Book Distribution Climbs 34.5% in 1975

Defying the serious recession that slowed the world economy in 1975, ISKCON devotees increased their sale of Krsna conscious literature last year by more than one third over 1974. The grand total topped nine million books and magazines, not including the Spanish, German, French and Japanese literature sold abroad.

Of two million books distributed half a million were fully illustrated 300-400 page volumes and the seven million Back To Godhead magazines

Why the vast increase? “It’s all due to the dedication of the devotees as well as a growing receptivity of the public to Krishna consciousness,” explained Ramesvara das, a trustee of the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust, which publishes the books of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada and Back to Godhead magazine.

With renewed commitment to fulfil Srila Prabhupada’s request to “distribute my books profusely,” the members of ISKCON spent more time and energy than ever before doing just that.

In the process they showed impressive determination and steadfast faith. For example the hundred-man Radha Damodara travelling party crisscrossed North America in six new Greyhound-type busses and ten vans, breaking sales records and simultaneously putting on full-scale lectures and festival programs on dozens of campuses.

The public’s increasing receptivity to Krishna conscious literature is also a key factor in the remarkable sales record. In a recent letter to His Holiness Tamal Krsna Gosvami, the leader of the Radha Damodara travelling party, Srila Prabhupada observed, “There is no other instance in history where religious books were sold with such enthusiasm and success.”

(From Back to Godhead magazine, 1975)


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4 Responses to Book Distribution Climbs 34.5% in 1975

  1. Rukmini says:

    Prabhu, while distributing books, what will you do with a person who has no money( or claims to have no money). I ask them whether they really liked the book and will read it ? When they say yes I give it to them for free. I think it’s bad to go without giving them a book. Prabhu, I’m very weak in devotional service and am not even a neophyte, what to speak of judging between one who will read and who will not…Pls give me your suggestions. Many people whom I met & to whom I gave for free never read the book & i become very angry but there are some who’ll read it sincerely too…

    Sorry very much for troubling you….
    All Glories to Srila Prabhupada’s book distribution!

    • Hare Krishna Rukmini

      Yes. I know exactly how you feel.

      I also do the same thing, if they say they have no money but seem to be a bit interested and might read the book then I give the book for free.

      The thing is we have to expect that most of the people will not read the books very seriously. But some will. And that is the point. We are not looking for quantity. We want quality. And most people are not going to be able to take to Krishna consciousness seriously. But there are some people out there who will. So we are trying to find those rare great souls. And in the process we are distributing Prabhupada’s books to everyone. And everyone who we meet and speak with benefits and if they give some donation and we use that for purchasing Prabhupada’s books then the person who gives the donation benefits.

      So it is best not to be bothered too much if they will read the book or not. The thing is if they give some donation they will feel obliged to read the book. They will feel “I have given this rascal so many rupees… Now I have to read the book to get my monies worth…” So that is the physiology of the donation. If they give a donation it obliges them to read the book.

      So if they give a donation do not worry. Mostly they are sure to read the book at least a bit. And even if they only read a very small amount that will be a very great benefit for them.

      But if they do not give a donation and say they have no money, of course usually they are lying, usually they have some money, but still if it seems they may read the book I would give them some small book. I feel like you that if we do not give them something then it is a total waste of time. The whole point is to get them to take a Prabhupada book.

      So the idea is the more you chant Hare Krishna and the more you read Srila Prabhupada’s books the more Krishna will give you the intelligence to understand what you should do in any particular situation.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  2. divyat says:

    please accept my humble question that if a shookeeper sells some srila prabhupada books along with his goods then does he do some sort of devotional service and does he help in distributting books of prabhupada or one has to just sell only prabhus boooks and not other goods.

    • Hare Krishna Divyat

      Yes Prabhu, if a shopkeeper sells some of Prabhupada’s books along with the other items he is selling that is certainly devotional service, it is certainly very pleasing to Srila Prabhupada and Krishna and he is most certainly a member of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s Sankirtan army. We have to distribute Srila Prabhupada’s books according to our own ability and utilize the facilities that we have available. So if you have a shop the members of the public are coming and going so it is a wonderful opportunity to introduce some of them to Krishna through Srila Prabhupada’s books.

      There are so many great devotees of who had ‘day jobs’. Even Bhaktivinoda Thakura, he was a family man, a grhastha, and he worked as a judge, magistrate, in the British government courts at Jagannatha Puri. At the same time he was a pure devotee of Krishna and performing unlimited amounts of devotional service.

      So realistically for a family man he has to do some business to maintain his family and himself but according to his ability and means he can also distribute Srila Prabhupada’s books and this is certainly the best devotional service and his service is no less than that of another devotee who, because of different circumstances in his life, is able to distribute Prabhupada’s books on a full-time basis.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

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