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Thank you for sending us BACK TO GODHEAD magazine. We enjoy reading it, as it keeps us well informed of the worldwide activities of ISKCON. May Lord Sri Krsna give you all more and more strength to spread Krsna consciousness.
Sanjay and Jayant Vaitha
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When I read Kundali dasa’s article on gurukula [19/9], I got an idea. I am a gurukula student (age thirteen), and in English class we have writing assignments. So I asked my teacher if I could write this letter to the editors.
I have often heard the comment “Hare Krsna children do not receive a proper education.” I have heard this from aunts, uncles, parents, grandparents, guests who come to the Sunday love feasts at the temple, and new devotees.
I always explain that we are still pioneers. This way of teaching, based on the fact that we are not our bodies, has never before been attempted in the English language. We want to teach from the proper perspective, we want to teach from the vantage point that we are not our bodies, we are spirit souls, there is a God, He has a personality, a form, and we have a relationship with Him. All this is taught along with academics. This is the foundation of a gurukula education. This process teaches one how to have a peaceful life.
Besides, our academic standard is high. In the year of 1983, several reporters, professors, and other visitors came to the gurukula in Gita-nagari and were impressed by how the children were peaceful and so enthusiastic to study. In the public schools the children do not always find enjoyment in their studies, and therefore the classroom becomes disrupted because of the children’s misbehavior. The educational system for the Hare Krsna movement is the only proper education.
At Gita-nagari we are taught tutorially. Srila Prabhupada (the founder-acarya of the Hare Krsna movement) said that teaching tutorially is the best method of teaching. Tutorially means that in one classroom each child is progressing at his own rate. The children in the class I attend are academically progressing at their own pace. Some are two grades ahead. I like this system, because if you are having difficulty with some subject matter, you are allowed time to gain a proper understanding of the subject without fear of falling behind in your class. If you’re ahead and you comprehend the subject properly, you don’t have to wait for the others to catch up.
Every child in our school is excited to go to a Hare Krsna school, because it offers real knowledge. You are taught why you have come here to this material world, where you will go at death, and what to do while you are here. We are studying the basic subjects, such as math, English, social studies, geography, history, and so on, but on the proper basis. God is always the center of our activities. In other schools, God is not discussed. He is intentionally left out. Therefore, our education is not based on falsehood.
Port Royal, Pennsylvania
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The following is an excerpt from a letter written to Mahadyuti dasa, a devotee in London, by his mother.
I do like the articles in the magazine relating to everyday questions and problems. Even if I don’t necessarily always agree with your points of view, I certainly continue to understand them more and find them helpful in talking to other people.
I feel I owe it to you to tell you that I no longer only defend your way of life, but I speak of it in such a positive and proud way (because I know you are devoting yourself to the welfare of others) that I know you would be happy about it.
I’m not sure if you’re encouraged to be proud, but I feel proud of you, your life, and your accomplishments.