New version available here: vedabase.io

Chapter 44: Bengali Kirtan Pros & Cons

Śrīla Prabhupāda Uvāca 44
Bengali Kirtan Pros & Cons

March 18, 1973, ISKCON Māyāpur Candrodaya Mandir

During ISKCON's first international festival in Māyāpur, many devotees demonstrated how they had become influenced by the Bengali form of kirtan. Śrīla Prabhupāda expressed some displeasure about the chanting of so many different mantras."They can chant their 'Nitai Gaura, Hari Bols'," he said, "but I will chant Hare Kṛṣṇa and go back home, back to Godhead."

Perhaps if we had understood the translation of "Hari bol," then we would have known what to do. Śrīla Prabhupāda enjoyed chanting the Mahā-mantra.

April 26, 1973, ISKCON Los Angeles

It was here that Brahmānanda Mahārāja and I introduced the Bengali style of dancing to the western devotees. We had learned it at the Māyāpura festival. Many of the devotees loved it and Śrīla Prabhupāda was seen smiling as he watched the devotees dance before him.

But, some did not agree. Pradyumna asked Śrīla Prabhupāda if it was all right to dance in that way because some of the devotees thought it strange.

"Yes, of course!" Śrīla Prabhupāda replied.

Śrīla Prabhupāda loved to see his disciples chant "Hare Kṛṣṇa" and dance in ecstasy.

Jai Śrīla Prabhupāda!