Among the many wonderful activities taking place in Sridham Mayapur by different organizations like the International Society for Krishna Consciousness, various like-minded Trusts, Gaudiya maths and temples, Sri Mayapur Vikas Sangh, and a number of other local bodies, one glaringly missing activity is an online media service. A service, which can cater to the needs of thousands of residents, literally hundreds of thousands of visitors and the many millions of people around India and the world, who remain unaware of the dynamic nature of this vibrant and rapidly developing predicted spiritual city, is becoming increasingly important.
Besides, there is a need to clean up the many misconceptions, especially in India, where people look at societies like ISKCON, not always as a spiritual organization but as a large corporate house to do business with. With a media service like Mayapur Voice, such misconceptions can be gradually erased from the minds of people so that they can accept Lord Chaitanya’s followers as someones who they can approach for advice on various issues like education, economy, social harmony and spiritual life.
In addition to that, India, having seen many financial and sexual scandals by so-called saintly people, is no more the country that it used to be before half a century, when people respectfully and instantly came forward to offer help to and trusted all those who dressed like saintly people. Today the situation is quite the opposite, and even a small mistake on part of any spiritual organization can easily be blown out of proportion by the media.
From my personal point of view, having lived in Mayapur for more than 25 years, and having minutely observed the surroundings, including many ups and downs in the society that I live in, as a well-wisher I feel compelled to state that ISKCON also needs an internal purification for becoming a better example for the world that it preaches to. Srila Prabhupada says, “preaching is the essence”, but he also says, “purity is the force”. Along with a strong emphasis on purity, both individual and collective, he also has categorically warned his followers against being cheap preachers.
By the grace of the Supreme Lord Sri Krishna Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, and by the limitless blessings of Srila Prabhupada, ISKCON has a tremendous potential to influence the world and its powerful leaders, but it is possible only if we, the members of ISKCON, demonstrate the highest degree of integrity in our own conducts. Charity begins at home, and as such, effective preaching necessitates that along with preaching activities for the outside world, we also act on improving local standards. An alert, unbiased, truthful and thoughtfully governed media service could not only inspire higher moral standards and inspire proactivity on part of the rulers, but it could also help keep wrongdoers on their toes.
Under the circumstances, we believe that Sri Mayapur, being one of the most sacred and popular pilgrimage places in the world, needs to have a free media service through which we could reach out to millions of people who are unaware of Lord Sri Chaitanya’s Sankirtana movement, who are engrossed in their day-to-day affairs, and who are unlikely to be attracted by anything purely spiritual available online. It is this audience that we intend to bring closer to their spiritual identity by providing an insightful and unconventional analysis of worldly news and trends of their interests, along with enlightening blogs and articles – all based on the teachings of Srila Prabhupada and the previous acharyas, which is the only hope for humanity today.