Imagine there wasn't a thing called language, if there was no way you could express yourself, if there was nothing you could do to connect? Well that's what it would mean to have a world with no communications. To communicate with each other, as individuals, families and extended societies is certainly a necessity. Studies world over have confirmed that healthy communications are the very basis to foster good relationships and promote well being of the entire society.
Recently this important aspect of the ISKCON world was discussed in detail at the Annual ISKCON Communications Conference, in India.
Anuttama Dasa, the Communications Minister for ISKCON is determined to see the ISKCON society grow as effective as possible, from the communications perspective. For over twenty years now he has been tirelessly training devotees, teaching them the art of communications that meets world standards. He does this from the wisdom he gained from his years of experience and based on what he learnt from one of the leading PR companies in the United States. He is supported in his efforts by Vrajendranandan Das, National Communications Director for India and Yudhistir Govinda Das who oversees Communications for Northern India and coordinates with devotees within the country.
Three full days of speaking to an audience isn't an easy thing, it takes a lot of energy and commitment, and after a mega event like a temple opening is quite an achievement, and this was what the Minister of Communications did. The first day of the conference at Kanpur was indeed a day of inspiration and concrete planning for the near future. Prominent leaders like Radhanath Swami, Devakinanadana Das, Bhakti Charu Swami addressed the audience which consisted of communication personnel from different parts of the Indian subcontinent.
The speakers - most of them direct disciples of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada - enthused the audience to focus their energy on the biggest upcoming opportunity, the 50th Anniversary of ISKCON. The speakers suggested that the 50th anniversary could be used as a major platform for reaching out to people at a very large scale that would not only help in sharing the knowledge given by Srila Prabhupada but also help ISKCON to showcase its phenomenal achievements at a mega scale.
Devotees were also given the opportunity to give detailed reports on their communications efforts at their respective centers. Reports included presentations on ISKCON Food for Life program, the Temple of Vedic Planetarium and communiactions efforts by ISKCON Juhu, Chowpatty, Delhi, Punjabi Bhag, Navi Mumbai, Eastern India, Kanpur and Chennai. This was perhaps the most appreciated session as it dealt with the practical aspects.
After his presentation on the Food For Life program Dhananjaya Dasa said "I know at Food for life program we have great deal to improve on our communications, and this discussion has opened up so many new ideas and now I am more hopeful."
Devotees present unanimously agreed that the Food for life program was by far one of the most successful programs for ISKCON. Considering its huge success in terms of the sheer numbers of children to which it provides midday meals and the kind of appreciation it has received from the Indian Government, it could be certainly highlighted more and could be a big asset to boost the reputation of ISKCON.
Parijatha Dasi's report on ISKCON Juhu's steady efforts was well appreciated. With a whooping 1.8 million likes on Facebook, Juhu ISKCON's Facebook page is certainly credible.
ISKCON Kanpur's report was indeed inspiring. It is one such story that makes it clear that communications if taken up seriously will help the temple in substantial ways.[ communications ] [ conference ] [ kanpur ]