Published on July 25th, 2022 | by Madhudvisa dasa

Whatever Happened to the Hare Krishnas? TV Show 2013

Compass, a program broadcast on Sundays on Australian national television broadcast this program in July of 2013 documenting the disappearance of the Hare Krishnas in Australia.

As we start a new series that looks back at some of the radical religious and social movements that swept through Australia in recent time and we start with the story of the Hare Krishnas and their impact here.

The Hare Krishnas were young, full of energy – and fuelled with a vision of a new type of spiritual life.

A lot of people joined the Hare Krishnas because they were seeking truths, they were soul-searching and they were seeking for something deeper.

Hare Krishna philosophy, Hare Krishna food, Hare Krishna clothing. There was no world outside Hare Krishna. That was all we knew. We were meant to be chosen children actually. Because to be born into a Hare Krishna situation was considered to be a blessing.

It was a disciplined life on the commune.

The day began at 3.30am with chanting.

It was a six day school. We did academia every day from 9 till about 1. Had lunch and then went to the river. It was a lot of fun.

We all lived in the ashram. Back in that time we had fields and fields and fields of flowers. So every day we would pick them, gather them and make the garlands for the deities. I can remember very clearly the music, the songs, and from the moment I got there I really didn’t ever want to leave.

So who were the Hare Krishnas, and where are they now?

Find out more about “What Happened to the Hare Krishnas?

About the Author

My first contact with a Hare Krishna was a most merciful Mataji in Oxford Street, London who sold me a "Higher Taste" cook book in 1984 while I was on holidays there. I started seriously reading Srila Prabhupada's books in Australia 1985 and by 1986 Srila Prabhupada had convinced me "Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead" and "we should surrender to Krishna." I joined the Hare Krishnas in Perth, Western Australia in 1986. Since then I have been chanting Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare, reading and distributing Srila Prabhupada's books and preaching as much as I can. That's my life and full-time occupation now really. I like it more than anything I've ever experienced before. Srila Prabhupada's books are so amazing... Even after reading them all many times they're still fresh and new. They are truly transcendental! That's it really. Now I'm just hankering to once again see the world chant Hare Krishna, dance and feast and float away in the ecstasy of Lord Caitanya's Sankirtana movement as it did in Srila Prabhupada's physical presence. Let the whole world drown in the ecstatic flood of love of Krishna!

13 Responses to Whatever Happened to the Hare Krishnas? TV Show 2013

  1. Aman says:

    Hare Krishna!

    Wow! Beautiful scenes from the golden days of Hare Krishna movement! No surprises why people got envious and destroyed ISKCON in their attempt to usurp its property.

  2. Aman says:

    Hare Krishna prabhu
    Dandavat pranam
    All glories to Srila Prabhupada!

    The devotee who says she didn’t want to leave looks sincere and it seems she has been mislead after ISKCON was destroyed. There must be many such devotees. So again we need to reestablish Srila Prabhupada’s ISKCON and certainly such devotees will join in along with new devotees.

    Hare Krishna
    All glories to Srila Prabhupada!

  3. sathyaprasad says:

    hare krsna prabhu

    you told those who wanted to advance in krsna consciousness should marry krsna consciousness girl not any other girl okay i accept that fact.but how can i find krsna consciousness girl it is difficult to find krsna conscious girl because in india i heard even marriage they are having sex and using contraceptive or removing uterus for the reason they don’t want child and having sex.iam worried.

    • Hare Krishna Sathya

      Actually those who want to advance in Krishna consciousness, if they are men, and if they can, they should not get married. It is best to remain brahmacary.

      But you have misunderstood. The point is just to become Krishna conscious. It does not matter about your external situation, man or woman, married or unmarried. The point is to become Krishna conscious. And that means surrendering to chanting at least 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mantra every day, strictly following the four regulative principles [no illicit sex, no meat eating, no gambling and no intoxication] and reading Srila Prabhupada’s books at least 1-2 hours a day. It requires some effort, some tapasya, to become Krishna conscious. It is not a cheap thing. It requires surrender and service.

      The point is to become Krishna conscious and if you do need to get married Krishna will make some arrangement and you will meet some Krishna conscious girl. But that is maya ultimately. For a man it is better to remain unmarried. For a woman she has to get married. So these things are there. In reality most men end up getting married. And that is also good. Marriage is also one of the samskaras, purificatory processes. The idea is you get married and discover it is miserable and there is no happiness in it so then you can surrender to Krishna with all your heart and soul. But if you can surrender to Krishna with all your heart and soul without having to get married first that is better…

      But the main point is to become Krishna conscious first. Once you become Krishna conscious Krishna will guide you and there will be no problem. You will know what to do.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  4. sathyaprasad says:

    hare krishna madhudvisa dasa

    is this two australian girl devotees training from the very childhood dara and chandra still following srila prabhupada 4 reg principles and chanting 16 rounds or
    they are not following .please answer.

    • Hare Krishna Sathya Prasada

      I can not say for sure but generally speaking you will not find anyone in ISKCON strictly following Srila Prabhupada because today’s ISKCON has deviated from Srila Prabhupada and does not even teach the members to follow Srila Prabhupada. So it is very unlikely that you will find anyone in ISKCON strictly following Prabhupada. Of course they say all the time “Prabhupada says” and pretend to be following Prabhupada. But they have changed everything. They have changed Prabhupada’s books, they have dramatically changed the Deity worship process, they have changed absolutely everything.

      In fact if one is actually following Srila Prabhupada they will not be welcome in ISKCON. They will be driven out of ISKCON. It has come to this now.

      As far as these two girls I think they are not even connected to Prabhupada. I think they are Narayana Maharaja disciples. So there is no question of following the four regulative principles and chanting 16 rounds. That is the attractive quality of NM’s preaching. He did not require his disciples to follow the four regulative principles or chant 16 rounds. That is why people join his organization. So they don’t have to chant 16 rounds and don’t have to follow the regulative principles. He preached gopi bhava, he claimed he and his followers were beyond the regulative principles. Some of them may chant four rounds but generally not even this.

      So I think realistically the answer to your question is NO. These two girls are not strictly following the four regulative principles and chanting at least 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mantra every day…

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  5. Kate Sarkar says:

    The show was an insight into how best to hide the truth. I mean get real, aniruddha as a beacon for the movement in Australia. He is one of the reasons the Hare Krishnas have disappeared in Australia. Where is the money Ani? You and Acintya travelling again on Prabhupadas money.

    • Hare Krishna Kate

      I think perhaps Aniruddha and those two Narayan Maharaja ladies may have been the only Hare Krishnas they could find who could at least answer some questions intelligibly. I am sure they would have gone to the Sydney temple, but would not have found anything there…

      Yes. Aniruddha is very attached to money. And you are correct, he is the big reason the Hare Krishna’s disappeared in Melbourne at least. I think the makers of this television show realized that also. They say “Why did the Hare Krishna’s disappear?” and then cut to Ani with no tilak and no devotional cloths and no sign that he is a devotee at all in his sleek bike riding gear cruising around the streets of Melbourne…

      And then Ani comes on and says “Hare Krishna’s don’t shave their heads, they don’t wear tilak, they don’t wear devotional clothing…..”

      Actually Melbourne temple used to have all Western devotees and the congregation was at least 90% Western people but in the early 90’s Ani, who found it difficult to work with devotees, decided to drive devotees out of the temple and instead have staff. He found he could control staff better than devotees. Because you can fire them if you don’t like them… And instead of Western devotees he began cultivating the Indian community. It was amazing. He got all Indian pujaris and had a program that after the aroti the Indian pujaris would come out with big plates of prasadam for Indians only and if there were any westerners there they would be completely ignored and get absolutely nothing… It was totally amazing.

      So in so many ways Ani drove out the devotees and drove away the Western congregational members and cultivated the Indians.

      So the Hare Krishnas completely vanished in Melbourne…

      Chant Hare Krsihna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  6. Michelle says:

    Hare Krishna,
    I loved this video. I am a 51-yr old soul with a 10-yr old wonderful daughter, we have been blessed to relocate to California and start a new life. Five months ago I was introduced to Krishna consciousness and have had such an overwhelming desire read everything Srila Prabhupada has written. The Christian material I have been reading has left so many of my deep questions unanswered that the Bhagavad-Gita has answered for me. This video portrays a life I want to have with my daughter. A life that has a balance of both worlds, the first being a dedicated loving devotee of Lord Krishna but at the same time living amongst non-devotees sharing our love and knowledge of Lord Krishna. Yet I have never even ever met one devotee of the Lord personally. I have been following the 4 principles and have been chanting 16 rounds of japa beads and have taught my daughter the Hare Krishna mantra as well. We are now living in Lemoore California and wondered where we could go to be associated with other devotees? Also is there anywhere I can go to learn all about the Vedic literature amongst devotees who can help me become free?
    Humbly requesting help,

  7. sandeep says:

    hare krishna prabhu

    as we all know that everything here is creation of lord krishna. . i want to know where is lord krishna from?

    • Hare Krishna Sandeep

      Krishna is everywhere, everything is from Krishna, but because we have material eyes and our consciousness is covered by materialism we can not see Krishna. But if we become Krishna conscious by chanting:

      Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
      Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

      Then gradually we will be able to see Krishna everywhere.

      It is not exactly where is Krishna from, but everything is the energy of Krishna. It is not that Krishna comes from anywhere. We have this idea of “Where is Krishna from?” because we are thinking Krishna is like us. And we really do not know what we are. We identify with our material bodies. So you are thinking that you are and Indian and that you are from India. But that is wrong. Your body is from India, but you are not your body. You are the spirt soul within your body. And you, the spirit soul, are eternal and you existed before you took this Indian body and you will continue to exist after this Indian body is long gone. So for you, the spirit soul, you are only in this Indian body for a short time then you will be forced to change into another body which may not be Indian. So the idea that you are an Indian and from India is wrong. You are an eternal spirit soul and actually you are from Krishna. Your eternal occupation is to serve Krishna and you have come here to this material world forgetting your real occupation and being bewildered in so many ways by maya [illusion]. But your real occupation is serving Krishna and you are really from Krishna, not from India.

      So it is not that Krishna does not exist then He comes from somewhere. No. Krishna is eternal, always existing. And Krishna is existing everywhere, even Krishna is present within every atom. So Krishna is eternal and Krishna is everywhere. Krishna does not come from anywhere.

      Of course Krishna does have his eternal abode, Goloka Vrindavan which is a huge lotus-shaped planet in the spiritual world. That is Krishna’s eternal abode. But Krishna is not like us that when He comes to the material world and appears in Vrindavan that He is no longer in Goloka Vrindavan. No. Krishna can be everywhere at the same time. So this idea of “where does Krishna come from” is superimposing the situation of our material bodies on Krishna. But Krishna does not have a material body like us…

      So things are different for Krishna. We can not imagine that Krishna is like us. Of course we are actually like Krishna in quality. Our spirit souls are the same quality as Krishna, but we are tiny and Krishna is unlimited. But in the material concept of life when we think of ourselves we are thinking of our material bodies, not our real selves, our spirit souls. So when we try to superimpose our material bodily concepts on Krishna it does not make any sense.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  8. Divine says:

    After seeing the above video, I have some doubts.

    1. How did the devotees fall down so drastically? The way they dress is totally materialistic.
    And are we all prone to such fall down as well?

    2. According to Srila Prabhupada, is it ok for women to work in offices, schools and other places? Or is it a must that women must serve men as wives(nowadays it seems very difficult)?

    I would be very thankful to you for clearing my doubts,

    Hare Krishna. Jai Srila Prabhupada

    • Hare Krishna!

      The ISKCON devotees have fallen down so dramatically and are now non-distinguishable from the karmis because ISKCON & the GBC have rejected and gone against the orders of Srila Prabhupada on practically everything. So when you reject your spiritual master you loose everything as far as spiritual advancement. So currently ISKCON is in this position. They have rejected Srila Prabhupada and have lost all spiritual potency and become non-distinguishable from karmis.

      As far as women in Krishna consciousness actually if one is really Krishna conscious he will know that he is not this material body and will be acting on the spritual, transcendental platform. So if a women is actually Krishna conscious then she is transcendental to the bodily conception of life and not identifying at all with her woman’s body but simply identifying herself as a servant of Krishna. So in this transcendental position there is no difference between a woman and a man. But realistically, practically, a woman devotee wants to act in such a way that she sets a good example for all others in woman’s bodies to follow who may not be so spiritually advanced as her. So there are particular duties for a woman and particular duties for a man and they are not the same. A woman has to serve her husband nicely and raise the family. If she is working in an office who is going to raise the family? It is not the position of a woman to be working out of home. She should be in the home raising the family and serving her husband.

      Of course it is difficult now, but we have to change the situation now. Not that we should change because of the difficult situation. We have to change the difficult situation so it becomes more conducive for spiritual life.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

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