To celebrate ISKCON’s 50th anniversary, the Museum for Sacred Art(MOSA) starts 2016 with a visual tribute to ISKCON’s founder-acarya HisDivine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, who, with a handful offollowers, started the Hare Krishna movement in 1966 in New York. And as wecelebrate and reflect on this anniversary, it’s only natural also to glorify SrilaPrabhupada’s qualities and contributions, for without Srila Prabhupada therewould be no ISKCON. ISKCON is nondifferent from its founder-acarya.During Srila Prabhupada’s physical presence, ISKCON thrived because of histeachings, vision, determination, compassion, sacrifice, love, courage, surren-der, etc., and after his departure, these qualities continue to inspire his sincerefollowers. Srila Prabhupada’s teachings and vision will remain ISKCON’sheart, and his personal qualities will attract and sustain the devotion of newdevotees for generations to come.
Srila Prabhupada is easily available through his books, videos, recordings,letters, photos, murti, and the temples he established, especially Vrindavanaand Mayapur. And Srila Prabhupada’s initiated disciples, especially those whohad the great fortune to intimately associate with him, have shared with ushis pastimes, instructions, and example through their written and spokenmemoirs. Moreover, some initiated disciples and other followers have madepaintings and other artworks about Srila Prabhupada — all to make surethat he remains accessible. MOSA’s latest exhibition, therefore, presents anexquisitely beautiful collection of portraits drawn by talented artist AnuradhaDeviDasi. These portraitsarebasedonphotosof SrilaPrabhupadathatarefamiliarto all ISKCON devotees. But Anuradha has captured Srila Prabhupada’sfeatures, expressions, moods, and charisma in a unique way and manages toreinvigorate these wonderful moments.
To these magnificent portraits we’ve added twenty-six short texts writtenby various devotees who share with us their understanding of how SrilaPrabhupada exemplifies the twenty-six qualities of a Vaishnava mentioned inSri Caitanya-caritamrta.
Srila Prabhupada is ISKCON’s founder-acarya, an initiating spiritual masterfor some, the preeminent teacher and ultimate authority within ISKCON,a pure devotee, an associate of Lord Krishna, an amazing sadhu, an empoweredpreacher, etc. May all ISKCON devotees remember him always and get inspi-ration from his person and teachings to carry forward his beloved movementso that more and more people can take full advantage of all the gifts he hasgiven us.