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A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

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San Antonio’s Vibrant ISKCON Community Creatively Expanding Outreach
By Atma Tattva Das, ISKCON News Staff Writer   |  Oct 11, 2023
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Ecstatic Kirtan with Madhava hosted by the Bliss House at Yoga in Motion.

San Antonio, Texas, often renowned for its rich history, vibrant culture, and scenic beauty, is also home to a thriving and dynamic ISKCON (International Society for Krishna Consciousness) community that is making waves in the world of spirituality and the arts. Led by the dedicated couple Bhagavan Narada Das and his wife Naradi Lila Devi Dasi, this community is fostering spiritual growth, artistic expression, and unity through a series of initiatives that have garnered attention far beyond the Lone Star State.

The story of the San Antonio ISKCON community is a poignant tale of spiritual awakening, devotion, and the pursuit of one’s ‘ikigai,’ a Japanese concept that translates to “a reason for being” or the “thing that gets you out of bed in the morning.” It’s a tale of finding that perfect intersection where passion, mission, vocation, and profession align seamlessly.

Bhagavan Narada and Naradi Lila, the dynamic duo behind the San Antonio ISKCON community, have played instrumental roles in nurturing this spiritual haven. Their journey began over a decade ago when they embarked on a mission to spread the teachings of Krishna consciousness far and wide. Today, their work has blossomed into a multifaceted community-driven initiative that resonates with both devotees and newcomers alike.

Bhagavan Narada Das and Narada Lila Devi Dasi.

One of the community’s latest endeavors is “Blue Boy Arts,” an innovative platform dedicated to nurturing and showcasing Bhakti artists and their creations. Bhagavan Narada Das, during our interview, eloquently shared his profound vision for “Blue Boy Arts,” explaining that it was conceived to be much more than just an artistic outlet. He articulated, “Our aim with ‘Blue Boy Arts’ is to carve out a sacred space where artists, musicians, writers, and creative souls of all kinds can seamlessly intertwine their talents with their devotion to Lord Krishna. It’s a place where the realms of devotion and artistry beautifully converge, allowing individuals to express their spirituality through artistic endeavors.” The platform, launched recently, is already resonating with artists across the globe. It serves as a testament to the transformative power of devotion and creativity. 

The San Antonio ISKCON community has also witnessed the establishment of the ‘Bliss House Meditation Center,’ a serene retreat nestled in the heart of the city. Bhagavan Narada believes that individuals are seeking inner peace and solace more than ever amidst the hustle and bustle of modern life. “The Bliss House serves as a sanctuary for those seeking respite from the chaos of daily life,” he said during our interview.

The center offers various meditation and yoga programs, gardening and chanting sessions, and philosophical discussions, providing participants with the profound wisdom encapsulated in the Bhagavad Gita and other sacred texts. It has quickly become a hub for individuals seeking a deeper connection with their higher selves and The Divine.

4th Annual Festival of Chariots San Antonio 2023.

Their 4th Annual Festival of Chariots, a vibrant feat of colorful celebration, captivated the hearts of attendees and the “Texas Kirtan Festival” earlier this year, aimed to bring the power of devotional chanting to the mainstream, echoing Bhagavan Narada’s vision of making kirtan more accessible to the general public.

In March 2023, the community hosted the “Gaura Purnima Community Art Festival,” a mesmerizing LED-lit spectacle that combined Bhakti with artistic expression to celebrate Lord Caitanya’s appearance. The festival invited the general public to experience and participate in what usually is a devotee-centered occasion, allowing them to showcase various art forms, including dance, music, visual arts, and more, all dedicated to celebrating the divine pastimes of Gaura Nitai.

In the coming months, they have an exciting lineup of events that promise to offer a unique blend of spirituality and culture.

UTSA Holistic Fair by students of the Self Realization Society College Club organized by students.

Bhagavan Narada envisions a future where the San Antonio ISKCON community continues to thrive, creating a welcoming space for individuals seeking spiritual growth, artistic expression, and genuine connections. He emphasizes that community growth is a primary focus: “We’re learning how to love people, take care of them, and create an atmosphere of friendship and support.”

The community also aspires to develop its community center and establish an equipped space with a garden, yoga haven, kirtan hall, and an ashram for those inclined to more profound spiritual practice. Bhagavan Narada believes that genuine community building is vital to fulfilling their mission.

The San Antonio ISKCON community is not just a religious group but a vibrant tapestry of spiritual and cultural contributions that enrich the lives of its members and the broader community. Through “Blue Boy Arts,” the “Bliss House Meditation Center,” and a series of upcoming events, they are weaving a narrative of spiritual awakening, artistic expression, and unity that is leaving an indelible mark on San Antonio.

To support or enquire about the ISKCON San Antonio Community, visit their Facebook page.

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