We are an active hindu vaishnava ashram community of lifelong members and volunteers from all around the world. We believe that having a diverse group of people of different ages and backgrounds creates an inspirational environment where individual talents and experience can come together in a spirit of service and cooperation. Thus, our saying “unity in diversity” offers everyone a chance to contribute in a meaningful way, and you are most welcome to participate in any of our projects. In this article we enlighten you about the main ashram activities and other options.
The Vrinda Kunja Ashram is a place of coordination for many different projects mainly based on the Vedic principles of seva (service) dana (charity), tapa (austerities) and yagna (sacrificial ritual). As an authentic Hindu ashram in the Vaishnava tradition, all of our activities are spiritual in nature, meaning everything is considered devotional service.
In welcoming volunteers who may likely have had no exposure to Vaishnavism or Hindu spirituality in general, we are respectful of their own personal beliefs and spiritual practices. With open minds and hearts we encourage you to join our spiritual activities. Below you will find a list and short description of the daily activities of the ashram.
In order to deepen our understanding of ourselves, the material world we live in as well as the spiritual existence we aspire towards, we rely on the teachings of Vaishnava Hindu philosophy. The great jewels of Vedic knowledge such as the world-renowned Bhagavad Gita and Srimad Bhagavatam provide endless opportunities to delve deeply into spiritual subjects for answers to life’s greatest mysteries. By regularly attending classes on these sacred Vedic scriptures one becomes inspired to perform devotional service. For as much as it brings you joy and meaning to life.
You will learn the basics of Hindu philosophy. Essentially karma and reincarnation, the Vedas, sacred places, lives of different famous sadhus and other interesting and useful topics. You can find different articles on Vedic philosophy as well as information about our activities on Imlitala Blog.
First and foremost, the morning lecture is usually based on a particular teaching from Vaishnava literature; an important ingredient to the ashram activities. It is followed by an open discussion. This is giving everyone a chance to ask questions, make comments and offer realizations about the morning lecture. During this session, participants will gain valuable insights into a wide range of topics for cultivating spiritual awareness in the context of current society.
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Our service to the holy places is mainly based on protecting and cleaning the banks of the sacred Yamuna River, the river itself and parts of the city of Vrindavan, collecting and recycling garbage, in addition with restoring important ancient temples. All in all, we make special efforts to create awareness about all these initiatives in the local people.
Volunteers come from all over the world to gain experience doing spiritual service in a sacred place. Additionally, this program is to offer you the circmstances of spending precious time (few days, weeks, months) in Vrindavan. Go for the spiritual and cultural experience of living in a holy place. With this in mind, engage yourself in some valuable service to the local community.
On the positive side, visitors and volunteers receive clean, modest, reasonably-priced accomodations. This means an ashram in the Vrinda Kunja guest house for their stay in Vrindavan. Three vegetarian meals a day are provided. In summer A.C. rooms are available.
One of our volunteer projects in India is our organic garden at the Jagannath Mandir, a temple located next to Vrinda Kunja. We invite our volunteers, devotees and visitors to participate in this beautiful project. Therefore they can have the hands-on sense of connecting with Mother Earth. And as has been noted, to cultivate healthful, organic produce for the ashram’s kitchen.
A big part of the ashram tradition involves offering food to the deities before serving it to the inhabitants and guests. We aim to use the highest quality, purest ingredients in food preparations for the deities. What better way to express our gratitude to Mother Earth and our love to Lord Krishna than growing our own organic food!?
To sum up, we are very grateful to receive the special mercy of residing and serving in this most sacred place of India, Vrindavan Dham. A place which is considered a traditional cultural and spiritual site of Hindu philosophy and religion. Millions of people from India and worldwide make pilgrimage to this holy place from time to time. For that reason we are very happy to maintain these ashram activities in the heart of such a sacred city.
Although the lifestyle in the ashram is very simple or even somewhat austere by western standards. The consciousness of the devotees is quite elevated due to daily exposure to sacred scriptures and constant engagement in pious service. We encourage visitors and volunteers to immerse themselves in this devotional environment to gain an authentic ashram experience.
Throughout the year, we publish news about the major spiritual and cultural events, celebrations and festivals at Vrinda Kunja Ashram in Vrindavan. Given these points, find out more about ashram life in English or Spanish on our Vrinda Kunja Ashram Blog.