This September, Volume One of ISKCON Studies Journal was released by ISI, an academic institute dedicated to developing the field of ISKCON studies through research, publishing and discussion.
“Volume One is full of excellent articles by some of the best scholars in the field of ISKCON Studies,” says ISI member Lal Krishna Dasa. “Including Harvard’s Francis Clooney, William and Mary College’s Ravi Gupta, ISKCON Resolve’s Braja Bihari Dasa, and Bhaktivedanta College Principal Yadunandana Swami.”
Topics include tradition and dialogue, social theory and schisms in ISKCON, and ISKCON’s educational history. The Journal also publishes book reviews, with this issue featuring The Caitanya Vaisnava Vedanta of Jiva Goswami and The Rival Positions in the IRM–GBC Controversy within ISKCON, among others.
Future issues of the journal will link to ISI (ISKCON Studies Institute) conferences – Volume Two, for instance, will include articles from the conference Guru: Person, Position, Possibilities, held this July in Italy’s newly refurbished Villa Vrindavana.
“[The guru is a theme that] lies at the heart of Gaudiya Vaishnava faith and practice,” explains the official website iskconstudies.org. “Indeed, the Indic religious traditions as a whole emphasize the importance of the guru, and yet they often have widely diverging understandings of the guru’s nature, position, and function. The conference aims to provide an academic forum to discuss this theme, especially as it relates to ISKCON, but with attention to its broader context.”
Speakers for the conference, who may also contribute to Volume Two of the Journal, include ISKCON guru Ravindra Svarupa Dasa with The Guru in the Gaudiya Vaishnava Tradition, and Deity Worship Minister Krishna-kshetra Dasa with Developing ISKCON’s Vision for Spiritual Guidance.
Next year’s conference is also expected to be held at Villa Vrindavana, this time from July 16th to 19th, 2010.
All articles from ISKCON Studies Journal Volume 1 are available on the web here.
PDFs and hard copies are available here.
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