By Madhava Smullen 

The podcast boom has accelerated in the first half of 2020, perhaps partly due to the appetite for more streaming content while people stay at home during the COVID-19 pandemic. ISKCON devotees have also embraced the medium, and recently a new podcast, 5 Minute Meditations, has emerged as a digestible weekly slice of Bhagavad-gita philosophy, practically applicable to everyday life. 

Available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Youtube, the podcast is hosted by ISKCON Dallas congregational director Nityananda Chandra Das, and is intended to be accessible by the general public as well as ISKCON devotees. 

The podcast was launched on March 26th, instigated by the fact that due to COVID-19, Nityananda Chandra could no longer give his regular short Bhagavad-gita talks at the BKS Iyengar Yoga Studio of Dallas. 

For about a decade, teachers at the Studio would ask Chandra to recite a verse from the Bhagavad-gita As It Is, and speak on it for four minutes at the end of their classes as they guided students through the shavasana relaxation pose.

“Those who attended very much appreciated it,” he says. “If I missed out on a class, they’d say, ‘We really miss your Bhagavad-gita meditation.’”

As well as students from the BKS Iyengar Yoga Studio, 5 Minute Meditations is also popular with those who attended ISKCON Dallas’ program the Darshan Room, which reaches out to the local population and which also had to halt gatherings due to COVID-19. 

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