ISKCON News, the official news agency of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness, has launched the Spanish version of its website on January 1st, 2014 at http://noticias.iskcon.org.
The website launched with twenty articles distributed throughout the “Inside ISKCON,” “World News,” “Opinion,” and “Video” sections.
Four to five new articles in Spanish will be uploaded on the site every week, with a view to possibly increasing that number in the future.
The website opens ISKCON News’ reach to a vast extent: Spanish currently has 410 million native speakers, and is a second language for a further 60 million, while it is the official language in 21 countries.
Serving as managing editor for the site is ISKCON Argentina Communications Director Baladeva Das, implementing an idea by worldwide Communications Director Anuttama Das.
“We could see that many Spanish and South American devotees didn’t have access to ISKCON world news, because they couldn’t speak English,” Baladeva says. “We also saw that English-speaking devotees didn’t know much about what devotees were doing in the Spanish-speaking world.”
To solve this problem, noticias.iskcon.org has amassed a whole team of volunteers from across the South American continent.
From Argentina, there’s Baladeva himself, translator Vrinda Sevini, and husband and wife photographers and film-makers Madhavendra Puri Das and Yasodamayi Dasi. From Bolivia, there’s co-editor Govindanandini Dasi, and translators and writers Radha Padmini Dasi and Devaki Acharya Dasi. From Chile, there’s correspondent Chintamani Madhavi, and from Uruguay, there’s photographer Megharupa Dasi. Finally, Murari Das, currently living in New York, provides the technical support.
This team will be busy translating many of ISKCON News’ articles into Spanish, so that Spanish-speaking devotees can be connected to news from around the world.
Baladeva Das receives a mention of honor from the Government of Argentina.
But they’ll also be writing original articles about the Spanish-speaking ISKCON world, which they will then translate into English and publish on news.iskcon.org for the benefit of English-speaking devotees.
“For example, next week we’ll be publishing an article about how Bolivian blue marble will be the main material used in the principal altar at the Temple of the Vedic Planetarium in Mayapur,” Baladeva says. “And we will be publishing lots of news about Interfaith dialogues in Spanish that English speakers usually don’t hear about.”
In doing this, noticias.iskcon.org will be providing a very important facility.
“Devotees will be able to read about how those in other parts of the world do their different services, such as book distribution or prasadam distribution,” says Baladeva. “And in this way, they will learn how to improve and become more enthusiastic about their own service.
After its launch on January 1st, the staff of noticias.iskcon.org plan to keep improving their website over time. And the Spanish site may not be the end of ISKCON News’ expansion.
“In the future, perhaps we can make many ISKCON News websites in different languages, with the idea of global communications,” Baladeva says, “So that we can learn more about the services devotees all over the world are doing for Srila Prabhupada, and thus how to improve our own services.”
To read ISKCON News in Spanish, please visit http://noticias.iskcon.org.
Jan 23, 2022
Anandini Tikunov (8th-grade student)
Jan 22, 2022
Sunanda Das, tovp.org