Overview of Krishna
Many things attracted me to the Krishna religion. Krishna religion is also known as ISKCON (International Society for Krishna Consciousness), and Hare Krishna, it has "a stable worldwide membership of over a million people." The Krishna faith is one of the most vocal "small non-Christian religions" in the world. You see many Hare Krishna's in airports and in public places selling things and singing. This was the main reason I was attracted to this sight. Learning about the "Nine Process of Devotional Service" and the strong link to Hinduism made me pursuit this religion further.
In the movies you have seen cameos of the Krishna people, from "Airplane" to "Falling Down." The signing chanting and dancing that the Krishna do in public is how the name Hare Krishna came about. "The first three words of the principle mantra" or "slogan/ chant" you would here the Krishna's sign goes:
Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna, Krishna, Hare, Hare, Hare
Rama, Hare Rama, Rama, Rama, Hare, Hare. These words summarize what the Krishna's believe. Krishna means "The All-Attractive, "Hare addresses the energy of God, and Rama means "The Greatest Pleasure. The mantra could now be summarized as saying Gods energy is to the "All attractive" or to the Krishna's. Also the energy of God to the "Greatest pleasures" of God, The "greatest pleasures" are with the Krishna's.
The "Nine Processes of Devotional Services" or the things people must do to be considered Krishna are:
1. hearing about God
2. chanting the names of God
3. remembering God by reading, associating with devotees
4. worshipping God by preparation of food, decorating the Lord, bringing others to see Him
6. praying to God
7. encouraging others to chant the names of God
8. develop a close personal and intimate relationship with God
9. giving everything we have to God including our bodies
Again the chanting is a main importance to the Krishna, seeing it in two of the nine main points of the devotional process. This strong emphasis of chanting is found many places in the Krishna faith. The chanting could be compared to a prayer in the Catholic religion. It is a daily practice for all Krishna's as it is for most Catholics.
Hinduism uses the Indian texts of knowledge called Vedas as does the Krishna. Hinduism believes that Krishna was the eighth incarnation of Vishnu a Hindu God. Two interesting differences in the Hinduism and Krishna are: "Hell as being a temporary place for people who have sinned greatly while on earth, and a direct personal relationship with a Supreme God." These ideas seem to make the Krishna faith to be ideal, you can have a one on one relationship with God and no matter what you do on earth you will always have a second chance. These ideas are ideal for the society in which we live today. Krishna's monks and Hindu monks abandoned cigarettes, alcohol and other drugs; they are against gambling, and follow a vegetarian diet. While devotees of the Krishna faith tend to live more simple lives, working normal jobs and attending the "Sunday feast." The life of the Krishna's is pleasing to the devotee yet strange to the observer. The giving up of all, including body is a concept most observers have a hard time to accept, making the religion still small with many vocal activists.