Toronto's Hare Krishna Temple

Toronto's Hare Krishna Centre (ISKCON Toronto), has always been the hub of a rich, vibrant and enthusiastic community. Whether it be grand festivals, programs at local universities and yoga studios, philosophical discussions, cooking sessions, or singing and dancing on the streets, there are events taking place for everyone's interest.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Video: Ratha-Yatra (Festival of India) Launch Day

On Sunday, April 23, 2017, the Toronto Hare Krishna Temple officially kicked off the countdown to the 45th Annual Ratha-Yatra (Festival of India), which is scheduled to take place from July 14-16, 2017.  The "Launch Day", as it has come to be known, provides a chance for our entire community to come together to offer their prayers to the Lord to allow us to present a vibrant festival to the entire City of Toronto!  The main highlight of the festival was a special fire ceremony wherein mantras and grains are offered into fire.  Check out some highlight videos below (note: a full video of the event will be posted soon!):



Chaitanya Charan Dasa - April 27 - May 1

The Toronto Hare Krishna Temple will be welcoming Chaitanya Charan Dasa from April 27 to May 1, 2017.  Chaitanya Charan is a monk and spiritual author. He has done his Electronics & Telecommunications Engineering from the Government College of Engineering, Pune. He subsequently served as a software engineer in a prominent multinational software corporation.

Seeing the prevalent problems of stress, depression, addiction and overall misdirection – all caused by a lack of spirituality – he felt inspired to dedicate his life to the cause of sharing the spiritual wisdom of the Bhagavad-gita under the aegis of ISKCON (International Society for Krishna consciousness). He is a member of ISKCON’s leading intellectual body, the Shastric Advisory Council, and is the associate-editor of ISKCON’s global magazine, Back to Godhead. He is the author of the world’s only Gita-daily feature, wherein he writes daily a 300-word inspirational reflection on a verse from the Bhagavad- Gita. He has written over seventeen hundred Gita meditations that are posted on www.gitadaily.com and are read through daily feeds by thousands from all over the world.

He also answers questions by seekers on his site www.thespiritualscientist.com, where his over three thousand five hundred audio answers and several hundred articles are available.

He travels all over the world from Australia to America, giving talks on spiritual subjects in temples, universities and companies. His articles have been published in many national newspapers including Indian Express, Economic Times and Times of India in the Speaking Tree column. His writings in English have been translated into several foreign languages including German, Chinese and Romanian and several Indian languages including Kannada, Telgu, Bengali, Hindi and Marathi. He is the author of sixteen books.

Official Schedule:

  • Apr 28th: 6pm-9pm - ISKCON Scarborough
  • Apr 29th: 10am-2pm  - Seminar at ISKCON Brampton
  • Apr 30th:  10am-1:30pm - Sunday Feast ISKCON Brampton
  • Apr 30th:  6:00pm-8:30pm - Sunday Feast ISKCON Toronto



Friday, April 21, 2017

Home Deity Worship Seminar - Sunday, April 30, 2017

As devotees of Krishna, have you aspired to transform your home into a small temple for God?  Have you ever desired to perform  personal service to Deities? Are you not sure how to do so authentically?  The Hare Krishna Temple is organizing an all-day seminar on Deity Worship with Bhakti Yoga Dasa.

This seminar will cover various topics, including how to:
  • pronounce mantras properly
  • perform achaman (water purification)
  • prepare bhoga (food) offerings
  • use paraphernalia for worship
  • apply tilak (sacred markings on the body)
  • performing arati
Seminar Details:
  • Seminar on Deity Worship
  • Date: April 30th 2017
  • Time: 10.00 am till 4.00 pm (lunch included)
  • Location: 243 Avenue Road - Green Room/Govindas based on RSVP
  • Speaker: Bhakti Yoga Dasa
Our sacred texts reveal that God has an authorized representation in the Deity form, which is called arcā-vigraha. This arcā-vigraha is an incarnation of the Supreme Lord. Lord Krishna will accept service through that form. The Lord is omnipotent, all-powerful; therefore, by His incarnation as arcā-vigraha, He can accept the services of the devotee. Click Here to Register for the Seminar!

"Engage your mind always in thinking of Me, become My devotee, offer obeisances to Me and worship Me. Being completely absorbed in Me, surely you will come to Me."
(Bhagavad Gita 9.34) 

Sankirtan Orientation Seminar - May 5-7, 2017

Sankirtan Orientation Seminar with Vaisesika Dasa
May 5-7, 2017

Srila Prabhupada’s mission was to write and distribute transcendental books far and wide so that they could change people’s lives. He has quoted that if even 1% of the people who encounter our books become devotees, it will change the entire world. As we are continuing to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of ISKCON, here is an opportunity to learn the art of distributing his books through a dynamic and hands on seminar.

We are very happy to announce for the first time, Toronto will be hosting a North America wide Sankirtan Orientation Seminar 101 (SOS 101).

SOS 101 will help you acquire the tools of trade by learning the nuances of book distribution, basic laws, codes of conduct and success stories along with hands on sessions in a fun filled environment. You’ll learn tips and strategies to successfully distribute Srila Prabhupada’s books to anyone and everyone.

This is a wonderful opportunity to attend as a family as we have hands on practical Sankirtan sessions to children as well! Join us for this enlivening course and boost your self-confidence.

Benefits of Attending:
  • master the art of book distribution
  • boost your self-confidence
  • feel happy and successful
  • stay motivated
  • strengthen your spiritual life


VRMA - A Small School with a Big Vision

Vedic Roots Montessori Academy (VRMA) was born in Fall, 2015 as a small preschool with a big vision – to become a leading Montessori school providing academic excellence with a spiritual foundation. We believe that a holistic education (addressing the mind, body and soul) can significantly contribute to a positive childhood experience, which research has shown, is linked to lifelong physical, mental and emotional well-being.

Over the last two years, VRMA has grown into a successful preschool in Toronto that combines the world-recognized Montessori curriculum with the values-based lessons on universal spiritual principles such as compassion, truthfulness, and empathy. VRMA also provides nourishing and balanced meals that promote the holistic well-being of our students in accordance with the ancient science of Ayurveda.

VRMA's first location at Yonge and Sheppard is running at maximum capacity, and they are ready to open multiple locations across the GTA as early as Fall, 2017. Their new locations will be selected based on demand, because they want VRMA to be as close to its students as possible.

Currently they are accepting pre-registrations for two age groups: Toddler (18 months to 2.5 years) and CASA (2.5 years to 6 years). The preschool will run full-time: Mon-Fri, (with optional after-school program).  If you are inspired to send your child to VRMA, please fill out their New Location Survey!

Cooking for Krishna - Indonesian Corn Fritters

The Toronto Hare Krishna Temple is starting a new online cooking series called "Cooking for Krishna" wherein delectable dishes from famous Hare Krishna cookbooks will be lovingly prepared and shown in a step-by-step fashion.  This series is presented by one of our very nice devotees of our Toronto Hare Krishna community, Lyudmila Mataji.  We hope you enjoy!  Please leave your comments below!


Cooking for Krishna - Indonesian Crispy Corn Fritters (Perkedel Jagung)
Prepared By: Lyudmila Tamahina
Preparation and Cooking Time: 40 - 50 minutes
Yield: about 25 fritters

Introduction
Today's recipe is from the famous Hare Krishna Cookbook, "Cooking with Kurma" by Kurma Dasa.  You can pick up your copy of this amazing book at the temple!


Step One - Ingredients:
  • 2 ½ cups ram corn kernels fresh from the bob about 3 or 4 large cobs
  • 3 large bot green chilies, seeked and chopped
  • ½ cup (125 ml) plain flour
  • ½ cup (125) rice flour
  • ¼ teaspoon (1 ml) baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons (10 ml) salt
  • 2 teaspoons (10 ml) coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) sugar
  • ½ teaspoon (2 ml) cayenne pepper or chilli powder
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) yellow asafetida powder
  • Oil for frying
  • 6 candlenuts or large macadamia nuts
  • Up to ¾ (185 ml) cold water
  • Packed ½ cup (125 ml) chopped celery leaves and stalk


Step Two:
Chop or crush the corn kernels to form a mixture of whole and semi-crushed pieces.



Step Three:
Combine the flour, rice flour, baking powder, salt, coriander powder, sugar, cayenne and yellow asafetida powder in a large bowl.



Step Four:
  • Add three-quarters of the water to the bowl of flour and spices, and whisk it to form a very thick batter.
  • Fold in the corn, the nut powder, the celery and the chilies. Adjust the consistency with extra water if required, to form a thick but "spoonable" batter.


Step Five:
  • Place oil in 22.5 cm (9-inch) frying pan to a depth of 1.25 cm (½- inch) over moderate heat. When the oil is fairly hot, carefully spoon in 6-8 heaped tablespoons of butter, flattening them into circular fritters.
  • Fry for 3-4 minutes or until the undersides of the fritters are golden brown.  Turn the fritters over with kitchen tongs and fry them until the other side is also golden.
  • Remove and place on absorbent paper towels to dry.


Step Six:
Serve Krishna first!



Step Seven:
Serve Hot!


Our Sunday Feasts Captured in Photos

For the last two Sundays, one of our active members of our community, Sathi Prabhu, has been capturing some images of our weekly Sunday Feasts.  He has assembled them into short little YouTube videos.  Check out these great pics!






New Book: Art of Parenting

The ISKCON Congregational Development Ministry is happy to announce a new book: Art of Parenting, Principles & Practices.

Striking a balance between being a loving parent and a disciplining guardian, handling crucial years of adolescence and impact of television and media, practicing the timeless Vedic culture in this fast-paced era, harnessing and dovetailing the inborn potential of the child in the direction of the ultimate goal of life have long been the crucial challenges of parenting.

This book is a compilation of articles by disciples and grand disciples of Srila Prabhupada with highlights of excerpts from Srila Prabhupada’s letters, lectures and Bhaktivedanta purports which throw valuable light on matters of childcare, home and family, parental responsibilities, school and teacher, etc. This volume can thus help devotee parents steer clear of the many challenges of this world while keeping their families anchored firmly to spiritual teachings.

The book is available on the ​ISKCON Congregational Development Ministry website (http://www.iskconcongregation.com/product/art-of-parenting/) for only $6.99 (shipping not included).  Check it out!

New International Initiative: Bhakti Marriage

As an initiative to support the healthy development of our communities and individuals, the Congregational Development Ministry (CDM) of ISKCON is promoting Bhakti Marriages; a practical pre-marital course ​based on Srila Prabhupada’s instructions.​

The Ministry ​believes that the only way to have ​stable and​ successful marriages is to learn and apply the Vaisnava principles as given to us by Srila Prabhupada. For this purpose, this much-needed course is now offered to all the devotees wanting to have a conducive, Krishna-conscious and satisfying marriage.

The c​ourse consists of over 30 lessons which systematically takes you through the different necessary aspects ​of the Grihastha Asrama.

Srila Prabhupada said: “Both the girls and the boys should be trained up. Then they'll be responsible husband and wife and live peacefully.” (Room Conversation- Nouvelle Mayapur, France, 3 August 1976)

Register now at http://bhaktimarriages.com/ - you can learn more about the course via the video below!

Ratha-Yatra Launch Day - Sunday, April 23, 2017

With warmer weather finally arriving, the excitement surrounding the 45th Annual Festival of India (Ratha-Yatra) is growing as each day passes!

Sunday, April 23, 2017 will mark the official launch of the countdown to this year's festival! The program will begin at 6:00pm and will continue to 8:30pm.

A special feature of the festival will be the chance for all devotees to observe a special fire yajna wherein auspicious mantras are recited and grains are offered into fire!

The festival schedule will be as follows (subject to change):
6:00pm to 6:30pm - Kirtan (Arati)
6:30pm to 6:35pm - Announcements
6:35pm to 7:15pm - Fire Yajna Ceremony
7:15pm to 7:30pm - Presentation
7:30pm to 8:00pm - Vegetarian Feast (Prasadam)
8:00pm to 8:30pm - Kirtan (Arati)