This page was last updated on January 15, 2004.

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Life at the Dead Sea
By Kavicandra Swami

Whenever I come to Israel, a group of us goes to the Dead Sea. It is an opportunity for revival of the material body as well as a retreat for more hearing and chanting.

As we were about to leave on the first day, I took one last walk on the beach. Passing the lifeguard stand, I saw a girl who normally was not there. She saw that I was chanting japa and called out, "Are you Hare Krsna?"

"Yes," I said. Are you a Hare Krsna?" which is my usual reply.

"Sort of," she said.

Like most young Israelis, she had gone to India. She said she had been determined not to get into any spiritual things, but it just caught her. She stayed at Pushkar, which has become practically an Israeli community.


Israel: A Coming Together
By Kavicandra Swami

After reading the awesome accounts of Indradyumna Swami’s preaching, I am quite embarrassed to tell about my little tours. But drops of water fill the jar, and I do believe that Krsna appreciates our efforts, no matter how puny they may be. It is always blissful to be able to meet non-devotees and tell them something about Krsna and give them books. I am quite late with this account but here are some memories of my last visit with the Druze. This was all arranged by Vibhisana prabhu, a long time Israeli devotee who now concentrates his preaching with the Druze.

If you don’t know much about the Druze, you can check www.Krishna.com where the Back to Godhead article by Dhira Govinda Prabhu is posted.


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Getting to Ivory Coast
By Kavicandra Swami

While trying to leave Nigeria, I learned many things, which I will not bother you with. But if you ever travel in West Africa, carry US$ cash; otherwise, things can be quite troublesome.

Charlyboy went to the airport to see me off. The ticket clerk was so bewildered that she forgot to ask for the payment. It was a slow time but those who were there were quite impressed that I was with Charlyboy.

I was hoping to fly to Ivory Coast. That required a change of planes in Accra, and I was waitlisted, but I tried anyway. They would not sell the ticket, so in Accra there was a big run around and I ended up missing the flight. That was on Sunday.


Transcendental Tourism
By Kavicandra Swami

Arriving in Accra at 0430 was a bit of a problem. My visa was not in order, but after some heated discussion I got in on a 48-hour permit. We were able to extend that with some endeavor, and the week was a whirlwind of action.

First we had a TV program at 0900. That was at the GBC (Ghana Broadcasting Corporation). They are quite favorable. Actually I don’t remember which days were the radio and which were the TV, since we were going sometimes twice daily. One show was on the subject of senior citizens. The commentator was very sincere and wanted to know our opinion as to why old people were being neglected. After the show he accompanied us to a program at a Roman Catholic organization for seniors. These folks lived with their families and just attended programs at the place.
[Photos inside.]


Nigeria Photos
From Kavicandra Swami

Photos for "Adventure Tours: Nigeria 2," Chakra, March 14, 2002.


Adventure Tours: Nigeria 2
By Kavicandra Swami

I previously wrote a little about my arrival in Nigeria. Lagos is a very large city and very few tourists venture there. We have two temples and many devotees. They live what most of us would consider very austere lives. The roads are very bad, and in all of Lagos there are only two traffic signal lights, both of which were broken on the day of their installation. The traffic situation must be experienced to believe it. The buses are unbelievably crowed and have as many dents as there are waves on the sea. No temple has running water, and electricity comes and goes.


On The Road 
by Kavicandra Swami

After one year I finally made it back to Nigeria. The flight from Japan to Bangkok to London to Lagos was long but peaceful.

Upon deplaning I noted that the immigration line was especially slow. While waiting I heard a few explosions and felt the building shake a little. Even after the long wait, the baggage belt was not moving, so I went out to see if the devotees were waiting. I found them and they were in a lot of anxiety. Somehow at the army base Armory, some explosions had occured and were continuing in a chain reaction.

We drove off through tens of thousands of panicking people who were just running to get away from what they thought was war. Explosions were shaking the whole city. Big fires were flaring and black smoke was covering everything.


The Druze: A Tourist’s Diary
by Kavicandra Swami

Starting at Gaura Purnima 2001, a group of senior sheiks (religious initiates) went with some devotees for a tour of India. They feel a great brotherhood with us and feel that their religion originated in India. They first visited Mayapura and were overwhelmed by the Vedic greeting ceremonies which were arranged by HH Jayapataka Swami. It happens that his secretary, Tusti Mohan Prabhu, is from the Druze community in Lebanon, so he could translate and take care of them nicely.

[Photos inside]


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