Connecting Devotees Worldwide - In Service Of Srila Prabhupada
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The Guardian article's original title: 'It's latent misogyny': Hare Krishnas divided over whether to allow female gurus"
"The close-knit ascetic movement says only men can become gurus – and conservative devotees are resisting calls to change
The chanting starts at five in the morning. The windows of the temple room are open and the cries of its congregants drift out into the pre-dawn. Across the street, dew has settled on the manicured lawns of the University of Florida campus. The Krishna House, a cream-colored duplex in Gainesville, is one of two main centers of worship for the city’s Hare Krishna community – the religious group’s largest outside of India. Four additional properties surround the main house, comprising a traditional ashram setting where devotees live rent-free, studying scripture, chanting and cooking vegetarian meals in service of Lord Krishna.
An altar at the front of the temple room features a lineage of gurus – all men – spanning centuries, shrunk down to the size of action figures. In an adjoining room is a life-size wax statue of AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, dressed in traditional saffron garb with African iris petals sprinkled at his feet, his bald head and broad, downturned lips immortalized in fiberglass and resin. In 1965 in Manhattan’s East Village, he founded the Hare Krishna movement – formally known as the International Society for Krishna Consciousness, or Iskcon – which is based on an ancient monotheistic strain of Hinduism and whose followers worship Krishna as the supreme being, the highest form of divinity. They chant his name thousands of times throughout the day."