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ISKCON Studies Institute to Hold July Conference In Italy

By: on Feb. 28, 2009

The ISKCON Studies Institute will hold its second conference at Villa Vrindavana, near Florence, Italy, from 3–6 July. The theme of this year's conference is "The Guru: Person, Position, Possibilities."

The Conference is a forum for open discussion with and among some of ISKCON's best thinkers. Speakers will include, Arya Devi Dasi, Braja Bihari Dasa, Dvijamani Dasa, Federico Squarcini, Gopinathacarya Dasa, Kimmu Ketola, Krsna-ksetra Dasa, Mans Broo, and Ravindra Svarupa Dasa.

The theme of this year's Conference – the guru – lies at the heart of the Gaudiya Vaisnava tradition (to which ISKCON belongs). Indeed, the Indic religious traditions as a whole emphasize the importance of the guru, and yet they often have widely diverging understandings of the guru's nature, position, and function.

The Conference provides an academic forum to discuss this theme, especially as it relates to ISKCON, but with attention to its broader context.

Topics addressed during the conference include:

* The Guru in the Upanisads, and Dharma-sastra texts
* The Guru in the Gaudiya Vaisnava tradition
* Roles of the Guru: from father to the Lord himself
* Srila Prabhupada as guru
* ISKCON's Zonal Acarya period
* Guru training in ISKCON
* The future of the guru in ISKCON

Some of these papers will be included in the second edition of the ISKCON Studies Journal, due out later this year.

Conference registration costs 125 Euros including all meals and accommodation. Further details and registration are available from Lal Krishna Dasa at

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