Contemporary Theological Trends In The Hare Krsna Movement

A Theology of Religions

Dr Kim Knott

An examination of scholarly work by non-devotees on the Hare Krsna Movement reveals a tendency to engage in sociological and historical analysis rather than a discussion of the philosophy and theology of Krsna Consciousness (for example, Brooks, Bromley and Shinn, Shinn, Rochford, Knott). One explanation for this might be that devotees themselves, particularly the founder, Bhaktivedanta Swami, have provided their own theological accounts. In addition, non-devotee scholars, such as A. L. Basham, John Stratton Hawley and David Kinsley, in recorded conversations with members, have commented on their understanding of the Movement's philosophy and its location in the Indian Vaishnava tradition (Gelberg, Rosen). These various types of writing constitute the body of scholarship on the Hare Krsna Movement (ISKCON). There is an absence of reflection by outsiders on its current theological interpretations. [1]

In this article I will examine one aspect of the Movement's theology, the understanding of its relationship to other religions and ideologies, and, in particular, the work of one devotee-theologian, Ravindra Svarupa Dasa. The opportunity for investigating this came about as a result of my obtaining the taped recordings of a European communications seminar held within the Movement early in 1992 in Germany. The seminar, like others held before and since, was arranged to facilitate discussion on the opportunities and issues concerning the relations of devotees with those outside the Movement, particularly those in other religions (through interfaith dialogue) and those involved in the study of religions. The objective here was not to prepare devotees to convert others to the Movement, but to enable them to build successful and productive relationships with others which would benefit both parties. [2] This objective, it was hoped, would have the effect of helping 'to combat mayavadi philosophy' (impersonalist, monistic philosophy) and to raise people's awareness of loving devotion to God or bhakti. [3]

There was a recognition by those organising and contributing as speakers to the seminar that an understanding of two issues was required to bring about their stated objective. The more obvious was the discussion of strategies for the actual meeting of devotees and appropriate others in interfaith dialogue and scholarship. The second was the need for members to understand ISKCON's location vis-a-vis both other religions and the arena of modern religious studies scholarship. Without such an evaluation, devotees would be in danger of failing to engage with the agenda and worldviews of those others with whom they wished to develop relationships.

These subjects were opened up for consideration by devotees by means of lectures, discussions and plenary sessions. Devotees are accustomed to the former because their regular theological training consists of daily classes using this format (as well as a more intensive period of study when they first join the Movement). Organised discussions are becoming a more common forum for ongoing training in public relations, management and preaching.

In the seminar, sessions were held on Religion and Religions (parts one and two), Modern Historical ConsciousnessAcademic Preaching in EuropeThe Anti-Cult MovementThe Position of Women in ISKCON Today, and ISKCON: The Enemies Within. The main speaker was the Movement's principal theological scholar, Ravindra Svarupa Dasa.

In the course of giving the three lectures I wish to focus on here, Ravindra Svarupa Dasa gave a brief autobiographical account as a means of examining various stages in the spiritual life and their interrelationship. These ideas are critical in his account of ISKCON's location vis-a-vis other religions, and I will return to them later. First, it is useful to know a little about the theologian himself.

Ravindra Svarupa Dasa

Before joining the Hare Krsna Movement in 1971, William H. Deadwyler was in graduate school engaged in doctoral studies of religions. He was 'a committed mayavadi', driven to explore those aspects of religions and philosophies which reflected his interest in and inclination towards monistic mysticism. Buddhism, and the work of both Wittgenstein and the Hindu philosopher Sankara attracted him. [4] After several years of philosophical investigation and personal experimentation in various religious paths, he met with devotees of Krsna and, through them, the philosophy of Krsna Consciousness. By this process his own ideas about the nature of reality, of God and the spiritual life, began to change. With his wife, he moved into a temple in Philadelphia, and, at his initiation into the Movement, received the name Ravindra Svarupa Dasa. Some years after this, in 1980, he completed his doctoral dissertation (on Hartshorn) and graduated with a Ph.D in the Philosophy of Religion. Since his early days in the Movement, in addition to temple management, he has been active in studying, writing and lecturing on Caitanya's Vaishnava bhakti. It will become clear later that this has involved him not only in teaching within the Movement but in academic outreach, through conferences, guest lectures and joint publications.

The audience for Ravindra Svarupa Dasa's lectures on 'Modern historical consciousness' and 'Religion and religions' (part one and part two) were familiar with the second half of this story. Their lecturer, however, used the first half, the account of his early studies in impersonalist philosophy, to establish two ideas. One of these was the existence and character of the discipline known as the history of religions of which he had had personal experience and could thus explain to the 'uninitiated'. The other was the notion of the spiritual progress of the individual. Both of these were important ideas to convey, the first because Ravindra Svarupa Dasa, in the course of his lectures, intended to describe religious studies' scholars and their work as part of modernity and its 'historical consciousness' (and also because he wished to help devotees to understand the interests and views of one of the groups of people they were being encouraged to meet). The second was important because the principal theological question he was to address in his attempt to explore the interrelationship between Krsna Consciousness and other religions and ideologies, was the extent to which a Vaishnava typology of spiritual stages might have application cross-culturally.

Both of these subjects will be given further attention shortly. The remainder of this article will be organised as follows. In the next section I will describe briefly Ravindra Svarupa Dasa's understanding of the development of Western ideas about material and spiritual existence. I will then try to show how he characterises modernity, secularism and contemporary Western religiosity. His juxtapositioning of Krsna Consciousness and modern historical consciousness will then be examined. Following that, in the next section, I will show how, from within his particular form of Vaishnavism, he derives a typology of spiritual stages (which he sees as being dialectically related to one another). In the final section, I will describe what he sees as being the value of such an analysis for relations with those engaged in academic scholarship and those of other faiths.

Modern historical consciousness versus Krsna consciousness

In the lecture entitled Modern Historical Consciousness, Ravindra Svarupa Dasa sought briefly to explain the Western pre-Enlightenment worldview and the transition from this to the modern conception of evolution. In order to do this, he drew particularly on the 1933 William James Lectures of Arthur Lovejoy on 'the great chain of being'. He explained Plato's ideas of 'the good', and the multiplicity of beings organised into classes. He then showed how these ideas were elaborated by philosophers such as Plotinus and Augustine and became established in Christian thought in a holy hierarchy of being. (In doing this, he drew frequent analogies with the Vedic worldview). He then returned to Lovejoy, to his understanding of the eighteenth century as a period which experienced a 'temporalisation of the chain of being'. This represented a revolution during which the great chain -in which all coexistent beings were hierarchically ordered with God, perfection, at the top and the devil beneath - effectively collapsed to be superseded by linear ideas of progress and of perfection to be achieved in time. This change from a synchronic to a diachronic conception of being provided a fertile breeding ground for notions of evolution, which we associate primarily with Darwin, for species-evolution, and Hegel, for his work on the evolution of the spirit.

The modern world was described by Ravindra Svarupa Dasa as founded on a principal of historical consciousness in which beings are thought to have evolved through history with the fittest surviving, in which ideas, societies, religions and culture are described as developing from the simple to the complex, and in which consciousness itself is assumed to be gradually evolving. As he pointed out, and as the audience of devotees would have known, nothing could be more contrary to the Krsna Conscious worldview. This, he said, had more in common with 'the great chain of being' than with modern ideas of progress and evolution. The devotional worldview was synchronic, with all classes of being existing eternally, and hierarchical, with Krsna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead and beings ordered by the principle of karma.

While God was at the heart of Krsna Consciousness, said Ravindra Svarupa Dasa, modern historical consciousness was secular in orientation. Scientific knowledge, for example, was characterised by a need to explain things without recourse to God. Phenomena and events were seen as subject to rational control. Modern Western religiosity had adapted itself to this worldview and had undergone a process of secularisation. In this process, traditional religious views about the authority of scripture and the role of scripture in providing knowledge of the truth had been marginalised and upstaged by the authority of the scientific enterprise as a means of extending knowledge of reality. Academic disciplines such as philology and religious studies, with an interest in Vedic language and literature, Vaishnavism and the modern Hare Krsna Movement, were part of the latter. Philology, he explained, was wedded to an evolutionary view of the history of language development.

Contemporary historical consciousness and Krsna Consciousness represented different paradigms, founded on different premises, he said. From the standpoint of Krsna Consciousness, modern historical consciousness represented a shift to the 'mode of passion' from the worldview which preceded it which, like Krsna Consciousness, was located in the 'mode of goodness'. [5]

Ravindra Svarupa Dasa was quite blunt about the consequences of the radical difference between the two forms of 'consciousness: 'Krsna Consciousness is so incompatible with the modern temperament that, if we don't destroy it, it will destroy us.' As he saw it, Krsna Consciousness, despite itself being 'pre-modern', represented a potential cure for modern historical consciousness, an opportunity for all to become purified through love of God and thus to become the bearers of a different kind of knowledge to that which prevails in the modern age. This revealed knowledge, available through the traditional lineage or parampara, would then ensure the reinstatement of goodness over passion and the return to a God-centred worldview.

As is clear from this summary, the speaker was quite open about the situation in which Krsna Consciousness in the West now finds itself. It is in a hostile environment alongside other religious groups, some of which have adapted themselves wholeheartedly to modernity and some of which continue to hold out against it. Set against the dominant ideology of modernism, Krsna Consciousness looks like madness and certainly like fundamentalism. The obvious question this raises is 'how is it to proceed ?' How are devotees to further the spiritual path begun by Caitanya which they believe can transform the world in this age? [6]

Devotees, of course, believe there are many vital ways to effect this change. One of these is dialogue with those in other religions and those for whom religion is of academic interest, and it was on this subject that Ravindra Svarupa Dasa addressed two lectures to his audience of European devotees.

The stages of the spiritual life

One feature of the modern age, reported Ravindra Svarupa Dasa, was religious plurality. As a result of migration and conversion, religions were now living alongside one another. Increased religious contact had brought about a growth in religious conflict, but also a growth in the attempt by religious people to sit down and talk to one another. This interfaith dialogue, he explained, was undertaken by sincere people, often advanced in the spiritual life and eager to learn about the beliefs of others. The principle was openness: 'You can't assume that you have the truth and no one else does.' Conversion to one's point of view was not the aim, he explained. [7] Confronting the need for dialogue was essential for the Hare Krsna Movement, he believed.

But what had devotees to contribute to interfaith dialogue? 'I think that we can make the claim that the Bhagavad-gita actually deals very much with the issue of religious pluralism, although it sticks within the Vedic context .Still there is so much diversity going on within Vedic tradition -Hinduism, or whatever you want to call it - that, in fact, the Bhagavad-gita has to deal with this . Hinduism is a collection of faiths.' In describing this, the Bhagavad-gita, he said, referred to the Vedas as kalpataru, a desire tree from which a seeker can pick any fruit they wish. The Bhagavad-gita then systematically surveys the fruits on offer, such as yogayajna, the worship of devatasjnana etc. He pointed out that these disciplines or dharmas all came from Krsna and all ultimately lead to him. He then went on to ask why Krsna favoured one, the devotional route to God, and thus contradicted, to a greater or lesser extent, the others? [8] The answer, he suggested, was that Krsna was trying to encourage people to move from one path to another, to 'a higher platform' of spiritual advancement.

At this point, in the first of his lectures on Religion and Religions, Ravindra Svarupa illustrated diagrammatically the relation between the principal spiritual paths discussed in the Bhagavad-gita. (I was not there to see this, and am reporting what I understand to be his depiction.) In three columns, from left to right, he placed karmajnana and bhakti and with them the words 'good', 'better' and 'best'. He described karma as 'pious sense-gratification', practising religion for material development. Jnana he referred to as knowledge of the impersonal Brahman, 'the conception of the absolute truth formed by negation'Bhakti, the highest path, was that of surrender to Lord Krsna, the way of pure devotional service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. (The 'bad', the way of 'impious sense gratification' preceded karma and was off the map).

Using this typology, he then explained how the various stages could be seen either positively or negatively depending on one's level of advancement. The chief aim, however, was to help people to move on to higher positions. This resulted in the apparently contradictory situation of a stage, karma for example, being understood as a positive achievement in some instances and a redundant path in others. To one who is trying to take the preliminary steps in spiritual advancement, the way of karma is praiseworthy; to one who has achieved a consciousness of Brahman, the impersonal absolute, karma is an inferior spiritual path to be avoided at all cost. The other paths culminate in the best, in bhakti.

Ravindra Svarupa Dasa then offered these as generic stages in the development of the individual human spirit. The Bhagavad-gita presented this analysis in the context of Vedic culture, but the stages were there, he said, in all religions. What is more, 'I don't say in principle that we are the only ones to preach pure devotional service', he added.

In the second of his lectures on 'Religion and religions', he went on to describe each of the three stages in greater detail in their original context and in other religions before moving on to his own intellectual contribution to the analysis of this typology. [9] These stages, he pointed out, bore a dialectical relationship to one another with karma as thesis, jnana, antithesis, and bhakti, synthesis. Karma was action in a world to be enjoyed. An individual moved from the path of karma to that of jnana when he or she became disgusted and wished to turn away from the world and all it represented. Jnana was the antithesis of karma: it taught inaction. Quoting from the Bhagavad-gita, Ravindra Svarupa Dasa reminded his audience that the wise person was the one who could see both action in inaction and inaction in action. Bhakti recommended karmaless action, action dedicated to Krsna. Karma and jnana together stood in contradistinction to bhakti. Both were 'rooted in the material world', karma in enjoyment of it and jnana in its need to negate it. Bhakti, however, was different in representing an alternative reality, a transcendental world of name and form.

The uses of the typology of spiritual stages

Ravindra Svarupa Dasa was then able to show by example how devotees might use this analysis of spiritual development in their meetings with scholars of religion and those of other faiths. Previously he had presented the typology in three separate contexts, at a conference for scholars of religion in India on deity worship, a conference on science and religion, and a meeting of scholars from different religious traditions. [10] He described these meetings in brief. In examining his account, I have drawn on the papers he gave as well as what he said about them in his lecture.

In the first, he used the typology and its inherent dialectical nature to help his academic audience to take seriously the difference between material name and form and transcendental name and form as found in Krsna and his arca-murti (the deity in the temple). He distinguished between karmajnana and bhakti, showing how the first focused on material form, the second stressed its negation and the third achieved a higher synthesis, 'there is form, but no (material) form' (1984[b], p.79). The form is transcendental.

In the second of the two presentations, Ravindra Svarupa Dasa used the typology to show the similarity between the Vedic and modern periods in order to make a case for the culture of bhakti. He examined the scientific mentality of karma-mimamsa and its negation in the heterodoxies of Buddhism and Jainism. He then moved on to illustrate a similar transition in the development of a Western post-Enlightenment counterculture focusing on mysticism, pantheism and holism which grew up in opposition to the Enlightenment stress on rational control: again, a jnana response to a culture of karma. He then pointed out that late-modern developments indicated a similar process. What was required, he explained, was a way out of this recurrent battle between the two approaches. A radically different culture needed to enter from outside which could transcend the conditions inherent in the cultures opposing one another. This third was bhakti.

In these two papers, Ravindra Svarupa Dasa's audience was composed of scholars. He took the opportunity, with them, of using the typology of spiritual stages to show several things. One was the difference between Vaishnava bhakti (particularly Krsna Consciousness) and other branches of 'Hinduism' (particularly advaita vedanta, the jnana tendency, the most challenging to the bhakti schools). Until the last fifteen years or so, there had been a lack of scholarship in the West on Vaishnavism, and this was seen by Hare Krsna devotees as a situation which must be changed. Attempting to show the character, value and superiority of Vaishnavism was a related objective. A further message for scholars, again revealed by the use of this typology, was the nature of modernism itself and its intellectual, 'scientific' disciplines. Getting scholars to think, not just about Indian spiritual paths, but about their own epistemological position vis-a-vis Krsna Consciousness, was an objective in itself.

What was Ravindra Svarupa's approach in the third conference where he met with religious people, like him engaged in scholarship, to discuss the relationship between religions? There, his objective was to encourage others to look at their own traditions from the perspective of the typology of spiritual stages with the aim of presenting bhakti as the highest. In showing bhakti to run counter to the other spiritual paths (as well as cleverly synthesising their approaches), he referred to the work of Rupa Goswami who said that 'pure devotion means service rendered to Krsna in a favourable way that is free from all extraneous desires and from all taint of karma, acts done with a view toward enjoying the results, and jnana, philosophical speculation leading toward monistic self-deification (Ravindra Svarupa's paraphrase, (ND, p.5).

His major claim in this context was that ISKCON's aim was to encourage the development of pure bhakti of this kind in all religious traditions. It was taught in many, though without the systematic analysis found in Caitanyite Vaishnavism. 'My own conviction,' he said, 'is that many Christians, for example, could benefit from this analysis, but they would not have to cease being Christians to do so. Rather they could mine the resources of their own tradition to pursue pure bhakti, thereby becoming more devoted and spiritually advanced Christians' (ND, p.7).

But was not this approach of encouraging bhakti itself injurious to interfaith dialogue? Ravindra Svarupa Dasa then attempted to show how, as a result of embracing a personalistic theology which accepts individuality, bhakti 'recognises positive spiritual value in religious diversity'. He ended thus: 'Certainly, ISKCON's ecumenical theology of bhakti does not end all disagreements. But at the least it achieves this: it recognises no real difference between intra and interreligious discussion, debate, or dialogue. We may disagree and argue, but, still, it is in the family' (ND, p.10).

The suggestion here was that the desire to encourage pure bhakti enabled devotees to cross all boundaries: debate may be less fruitful with a member of another Hindu sect than with a Christian or Muslim. The typology provided an unusual way of looking at spirituality, dividing the spiritual family not by religions but by stages or approaches.

With those of other faiths, as with scientists and scholars of religion, Ravindra Svarupa Dasa aimed to spread an awareness of bhakti and to combat the powerful and widespread impersonalist philosophies found in jnana, Buddhism, the via negativa of Christianity, and in many late-modern, 'Aquarian' or New Age Movements. In doing this, and in using the typology of karmajnana and bhakti, he was continuing the work of those before him in the tradition of Krsna Consciousness by reiterating a systematic theological teaching on the stages of spiritual development (adapted to time and place). By placing it before other devotees in ISKCON in this way, he was introducing this analysis as a strategic device for the development of relationships with particular groups which share with them a serious interest in religion. Placing bhakti on the agenda of such groups in a spirit of dialogue and openness was Ravindra Svarupa's principal aim, the typology of spiritual stages, his principal instrument.


[1] A further reason for this might be the assumption that Krsna Consciousness, like other sampradayas or sectarian traditions associated with vedanta philosophies, is inherently conservative and, therefore, fixed in its theological understanding. See note nine.

[2] In the case of devotee/scholar relationships, the devotee would be benefited by having spread information about the Movement which might be passed on to new generations of students; the scholar would be benefited by gaining access to a living example of a branch of contemporary 'Hinduism', a real practitioner rather than the pale reflection obtained in books.

[3] This was an aim of the Movement's founder and is carried on by his followers (Ravindra Svarupa Dasa, 1992[b]). It is seen as important because of the widespread belief that the principal philosophical orientation in 'Hinduism' is advaita vedanta as taught first by Sankara and later by Vivekananda, among others. Devotees perceive a need to draw attention to the widely-held 'personalist' philosophy, the various forms of which are prevalent in India's Vaishnava Movements.

[4] A fascinating account of William Deadwyler's spiritual journey is provided in Encounter with the Lord of the Universe ( Ravindra Svarupa Dasa, 1984[a]). There he writes of his attempt to 'merge into the tin-can factory' (p. 23) where he was working one summer. He goes on to show the influence of Buddhism upon him by writing, 'I wanted to extirpate all material cravings and attachments, yet I couldn't even quit smoking cigarettes' (p. 25). He then describes his meetings with Hare Krsna devotees, owning that he had assumed they 'were impersonalists, like me' until he heard one explaining the supremacy of the transcendental form of Krsna: 'Instantly, all the different pieces of the Krsna Conscious philosophy I had heard came together coherently. And in my mind the conceptual edifice of impersonal philosophy came crashing down as if someone had put a bomb under it' (p. 28).

[5] Ravindra Svarupa Dasa is referring here to rajas and sattva, two of the three attributes (guna), with tamas, described in samkhya philosophy and in the Bhagavad-gita.

[6] The Hare Krsna Movement has a millenarian view, seeing itself as the successor in a lineage from Caitanya who, as yuga-avatara, incarnation for the age, introduced the final chapter of a vast, sacred history. Ravindra Svarupa Dasa describes ISKCON's view in detail in his 1989 article.

[7] The nature of the dialogical process was discussed further by Ravindra Svarupa Dasa and another devotee, Saunaka Rsi Dasa , in a seminar session on 'Academic preaching in Europe'.

[8] The Krsna Conscious interpretation of the Bhagavad-gita is presented in Bhaktivedanta Swami's translation and commentary, Bhagavad-gita As It Is, and it is this work which Ravindra Svarupa Dasa is drawing on here. There have been many other commentaries on this text written from different philosophical perspectives. There is little agreement between them on the principal spiritual path articulated in the Bhagavad-gita (Sharma). Several works which investigate these various interpretations are those by Minor, Sharma, and Sharpe.

[9] This is referred to also in 1984(b), p. 79. Ravindra Svarupa Dasa makes a special point of referring to his own contribution in this analysis for a good reason. Up until this point, he has been drawing on the views of his guru, Bhaktivedanta Swami (known to him as 'Srila Prabhupada'). His text has been the Bhagavad-gita and its interpretation that of his guru and, to a great extent, those before him in the spiritual lineage or parampara. (ISKCON is a branch of the Brahma-Madhva-Gaudiya sampradaya.) By their nature, the vedanta sampradayas are conservative. Teachings are passed on in succession without change. 'Every act of transmission is a virtual re-instantiation of the original revelation' (Ravindra Svarupa Dasa, 1989, p. 60). Devotees are expected to receive and then pass on the teachings without 'mental speculation'. Such speculation cannot take a devotee into the realm of transcendental name and form (it is, as such, part of the lesser spiritual path of jnana-yoga).

The important difference in the case of Ravindra Svarupa's contribution is that this represents what, in another context, he refers to as legitimate 'innovation' (1989), quoting Bhaktivedanta Swami to explain the position: 'All the great acaryas or religious preachers or reformers of the world executed their mission by adjustment of religious principles in terms of time and place' (Bhaktivedanta Swami in Ravindra Svarupa Dasa, 1989, p. 73). Ravindra Svarupa Dasa sees himself as using a modern intellectual tool, in this case Hegel's idea of dialectical progress, in order to assist in clarifying the teachings which have come down to him through the guru-parampara.

[10] Two of his conference contributions were later published (Ravindra Svarupa Dasa, 1984[b], 1987). I do not have final details about the last of the three (Ravindra Svarupa Dasa NOD.).


Bhaktivedanta Swami, A. C., 1972, Bhagavad-gita As It Is, New York, Bhaktivedanta Book Trust.

Bromley, David G. and Shinn, Larry D., eds., 1989, Krsna Consciousness in the West, Lewisburg, Bucknall University Press.

Brooks, Charles R., 1989, The Hare Krsnas in India, Princeton, Princeton University Press.

Gelberg, Steven, J., ed., 1983, Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna: Five Distinguished Scholars on the Krsna Movement in the West, New York, Grove Press.

Knott, Kim, 1986, My Sweet Lord: The Hare Krsna Movement, Wellingborough, Aquarian Press.

Minor, Robert N., ed., 1986, Modern Indian Interpreters of the Bhagavad-gita, New York, State University of New York Press.

Ravindra Svarupa Dasa (also William Deadwyler III), 1984[a], Encounter with the Lord of the UniverseCollected Essays 1978-83, Washington, The Gita Nagari Press. 1984[b], 'The devotee and the deity: Living a personalistic theology', Gods of Flesh, Gods of Stone: The Embodiment of Divinity in India, J. P. Waghorne and N. Cutler, eds., Chambersburg, Anima.

1985, The scholarly tradition in Caitanyite Vaisnavism: India and America and 'Response to Katherine Young', ISKCON Review, 1:1.

1987, 'The contribution of Bhagavat dharma towards "a scientific religion" and "a religious science''', Synthesis of Science and Religion: Critical Essays and Dialogues, T. D. Singh and R. Gomatam, eds., San Francisco, Bhaktivedanta Institute.

1989, 'Patterns in ISKCON's historical self-perception', Krsna Consciousness in the West, D. G. Bromley and L. D. Shinn, eds., Lewisburg, Bucknall University.

1992[a], 'Sampradaya of Sri Caitanya' Vaisnavism: Contemporary Scholars Discuss the Gaudiya Tradition, S. J. Rosen, ed., New York, Folk Books.

1992[b], 'Religion and religions, part one', 'Religion and religions, part two', Modern historical consciousness' (taped lectures), Second European Communications Seminar, ISKCON, Germany.

n.d. 'The Religion of Others in ISKCON's eyes'.

Rochford, E. Burke, 1985, Hare Krsna in America, New Brunswick, Rutgers University Press.

Rosen, Steven J., ed., 1992, Vaisnavism: Contemporary Scholars Discuss the Gaudiya Tradition, New York, Folk Books.

Sharma, Arvind, 1986, The Hindu Gita: Ancient and Classical Interpretations of the Bhagavadgita, London, Duckworth.

Sharpe, Eric, 1985, The Universal Gita: Western Images of the Bhagavadgita: A Bicentenary Study, London, Duckworth.

Shinn, Larry D., 1987, The Dark Lord: Cult Images and the Hare Krsnas in America, Philadelphia, The Westminster Press.