Many know the International Society for Krishna Consciousness for
the meals it serves from its place of worship on Legion Street. Not
everyone is as familiar with the history of the Hare Krishna.
The religion represents the Vedic tradition of ancient India with
its beginnings more than 5,000 years ago.
“It’s based on the ancient Sanskrit religious scriptures. The
Vedic tradition is technically known as Vedas, which represents the
oldest scriptures in the world and the oldest religious tradition,”
explained Tukarama an ordained spiritual mentor.
The Vedic religion teaches the worship of one Supreme God named
Krishna, which means “God” in Sanskrit.
“A monotheist is one who believes God exists as supreme lord and
we exist eternally as his servants,” Tukarama said. “In Vedas
teachings, when the soul becomes purified their original dormant
relationship with God is rejuvenated.”
He explained that when you reach that level one is able to see God
and serve God as a pure soul.
“Everyone is actually a pure spiritual being soul possessed with
spiritual senses to see God with eyes of the soul,” he said.
Besides the scriptures there were also gurus who embodied the
Vedic teachings by their own example and passed the religion on to
Hare Krishnas vow to follow regulated spiritual principles
including not eating meat, fish or eggs. They don’t take intoxicants,
including caffeine nor do they gamble or allow sex outside of
In addition, Krishnas chant the names of God for two hours every
day on beads. To them God means all-attractive one.
“We worship God who is the most attractive, goodest, greatest. We
chant the names of God,” Tukarama said.
“When people see us on the street chanting and dancing we chant
the name of God who is our own hero. It gives the greatest benefit
and love to the world by chanting God’s names no matter what
language,” he said.
Krishnas actively serve the community by providing food all over
the area for the homeless. They also have a lunch club at their place
of worship in Laguna where the public can enjoy an inexpensive
vegetarian meal, and every Sunday they have a feast program from 6:30
to 8 p.m. that includes Indian music, a lecture on Vedic philosophy
and a vegetarian meal.
The public is invited to a big regional festival from noon to 3
p.m. on Saturday. All the congregations will be present from Orange
County and they expect about 250 to 300 people, including dignitaries
The International Society for Krishna Consciousness is at 285
Legion Street. Information: 494-7029.