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|Krsna Conscious Television
is "Barely" Alive
by Raghunath Dasanudas
In a recent article, my friend and fellow Vrindavan Gurukula Vet, Vrindavan, wrote about various ongoing Krsna Conscious TV (KCTV) programs. It is admirable that there are some devotees maintaining these programs. However, the sad truth is, these efforts are barely reaching 1% of the potential viewers in the US and Canada. Yes, KCTV may be alive, but it is not doing well when you take into account the thousands of public access stations across North America. It is as if these stations are just sitting there, waiting to be used to spread the glories of Krsna, but hardly anyone is willing to take the time or make the effort.
The Iskcon leadership has ignored this golden opportunity for far too long.
I was, therefore, quite enthused and surprised to hear that Jagat Traya Prabhu has miraculously generated support from the Iskcon leadership for this important preaching program. It couldn't have come at a better time.
As everyone knows, a major lawsuit has been filed against Iskcon in regards to the abuse of Gurukula kids. The mainstream media, always keen to degrade religion and God consciousness in the eyes of the general public, has already begun to use the lawsuit as an opportunity to discredit the Krsna Conscious movement. Because most of the abuse charges are factual, there is no legal defense or denial that the GBC and the legal entity of Iskcon failed miserably in protecting its women and children. However, it is of paramount importance that the public in general understands that Iskcon's failure, in this regard, has nothing to do with the eternal message of Love of God that Srila Prabhupada brought to the West.
WHAT BETTER WAY TO LET THE PEOPLE KNOW THE TRUTH THAN TO FLOOD THOUSANDS OF PUBLIC ACCESS STATIONS ACROSS NORTH AMERICA WITH KRSNA CONSCIOUS PROGRAMS. LET THE PUBLIC SEE AND HEAR SRILA PRABHUPADA DIRECTLY ON A WEEKLY BASIS. LET THE PUBLIC LEARN ABOUT THE GLORIES OF THE GOLDEN AVATAR, SRI CHAITANYA. LET THE PUBLIC SEE FOR THEMSELVES, DIRECTLY, WHAT THE KRSNA CONSCIOUS MOVEMENT IS REALLY ABOUT.
But of course none of this will happen if no one makes the effort to do it, or if we ignore those who have been struggling to preach in this important field. It is obviously Krsna and Prabhupada's arrangement that Jagat Traya Prabhu has so timely put together a group to help people network and put Krsna Consciousness on the airwaves. I know that my friend Vrin has struggled to maintain these programs and he is also quite enthused by this development.
I quote Vrindavan Parker, "Because of my past disappointment with official Iskcon programs I didn't understand that this new effort was actually the efforts of sincere devotees that have managed to convince the Iskcon leadership to actually start supporting the TV preaching field. The truth is, there is a potential of nearly 3 to 4 hundred million viewers, and I doubt we are even reaching one percent of them at this time. Therefore I agree that, yes maybe KCTV is alive, but it is not doing well compared to what it can be doing and is definitely not reaching all the people that it should be reaching. Therefore the need for a unified effort by any and all the devotees interested in this TV preaching is in the extreme." End Quote
In conclusion, let me say that because the mainstream media ignores the Krsna Conscious movement and abuses its power over public opinion to promote a negative perception of any and all God Conscious movements, we must fight back. The current court case and all the stories of abuse, are being used by the media to discredit Srila Prabhupada and Gaudiya Vaisnavism in general, and to disenchant our natural allies, the Hindu Community.
IT IS THE DUTY OF EVERYONE WHO LOVES SRILA PRABHUPADA TO LET THE WORLD KNOW WHO HE REALLY IS, WHAT HIS MOVEMENT IS REALLY ABOUT, AND THAT THE KRSNA CONSCIOUS MOVEMENT IS TRULY THE MEANS BY WHICH THE FIRE OF MATERIAL SUFFERING CAN BE EXTINGUISHED.
SO PLEASE, PLEASE TAKE IMMEDIATE STEPS TO PUT KCTV ON THE AIR WHEREVER YOU LIVE. CONTACT YOUR LOCAL PUBLIC ACCESS STATION AND ASK THEM WHAT THEIR TECHNICAL REQUIREMENTS ARE, WHAT KIND OF TAPES, ETC. CALL JAGAT TRAYA AT ISKCON CABLE ENTERPRISES, TO NETWORK WITH OTHER DEVOTEES IN YOUR AREA OR TO GET ADVICE ON HOW TO PROCEED. LET'S NOT LET THIS GOLDEN OPPORTUNITY PASS US BY.
P.S. Remember, by law, Public access TV Stations must allow access to any legal resident, and most stations are proud to add quality cultural programs to their line up. In some areas, Public access is perceived as hokey and unprofessional, but this is a false assumption. Public access TV is what you make of it. The mainstream media is adamantly opposed to public access, because it is seen as a direct threat to their Corporate Control of the airwaves. At best they ignore it and at worst, they fund lobbyists to convince Lawmakers to cut funding for public access. Don't be fooled by the Mainstream Media's propaganda. Public Access TV is an extremely powerful tool, esp. on the local level, and it has millions of appreciative viewers. Lets give them a taste of the nectar for which they are always anxious, KRSNA CONSCIOUS TELEVISION.
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