dublin harinam with amita krishna das

Harinam: Kirtan to share Krishna Consciousness with the public

dublin harinam with amita krishna das

Harinam literally means the name of God or the Holy NameHari, Viṣṇu, or Kṛṣṇa — the repetition of which is prescribed as the best means of spiritual progress in the age of materialism in which we now live:

There may be discrepancies in pronouncing the mantras and observing the regulative principles, and, moreover, there may be discrepancies in regard to time, place, person and paraphernalia. But when Your Lordship’s [Krishna’s] holy name is chanted, everything becomes faultless.Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 8.23.16

Modern Hare Krishnas are following the Gaudiya Vaishnava tradition established by Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, also called the founder of the sankirtan movement (sankirtan meaning congregational chanting). From the beginning this movement has grown by holding sankirtan in public, and therefore this Harinam practice is still honoured today.

Why chant in public?

In order for the self-perpetuating cycle of birth and death to come to an end, all of us must first experience a spark of remembrance of God, to awaken the buried memory that our true nature is an eternal spirit soul, not a temporary body. In addition to expressing our shared joy at this realisation, our public Harinam attempts to share this spark with as many people as possible.

You will always be welcome to come and watch, listen, sing with us, and perhaps find an opportunity to see the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Krishna, in your own heart and the hearts of all those around us.

Tuesday Night Kirtan

kirtan in dublin krishna temple

Many participants simply enjoy the spiritual benefits of hearing and chanting sacred music in a serene & spiritual environment… though in its full expression, kirtan in the heart of the devotee is a cry out to be reunited with the Supreme:

This singing is the process for clearing the dust accumulated on the heart. Our relationship with God is eternal. It cannot be broken. But due to the contact of māyā we are trying to forget Him. But if we chant this holy name of God, Hare Kṛṣṇa, then māyā will not act, and we shall very quickly understand what is our relationship with God. That is the process.A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada,Arrival Address — London, September 11, 1969

For two hours every Tuesday, devotees play accompaniment on Indian musical instruments — mrdanga, kartals and harmonium — to kirtanis singing improvised renditions of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra (see page bottom) with other members antiphonally chanting in response.

From the beginning to the end of the kirtan, the chanting will often increase in intensity, to the point where many attendees are unable to keep from dancing. This is in fact a natural expression of the spirit soul’s true nature — to be sublimely happy — after the bonds of the material world have become disengaged.

Sometimes there is a short break in the middle when one of our local pandits illuminates some aspect of the maha-mantra which may help in our private chanting & spiritual progress. There is no formal structure to the event, so attendees are free to come & go as they wish.

Tuesdays 6:30pm – 8:30pm
Free (donations into box welcome)

Kirtan Lyrics

Sunday Feast

krishna sunday feast dancing kirtan

Every Sunday at Hare Krishna temples around the world, a Sunday Feast is prepared for visitors and regular attendees, which includes kirtan (devotional chanting) and a uniquely prepared talk about the basics of Vedic philosophy.

Both chanting and partaking of spiritualised food (prasādam) are very important in the tradition of Gaudiya Vaishnavism (the classical term for the Hare Krishna spiritual movement) since they dislodge our consciousness from its material fixations and make us more fit for spiritual realisation:

Material senses cannot appreciate Kṛṣṇa’s holy name, form, qualities and pastimes. When a conditioned soul is awakened to Kṛṣṇa consciousness and renders service by using his tongue to chant the Lord’s holy name and taste the remnants of the Lord’s food [prasādam], the tongue is purified, and one gradually comes to understand who Kṛṣṇa really is.Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu 1.2.234

govardhan puja 2012 feast

At the centre of the afternoon is a philosophy talk from a different speaker each week. Often we host travelling swamis and pandits: the subject is always new but may always be appreciated by newcomers. Visiting members from other faiths are often surprised at the accommodating nature of the Vedic religion, which is inclusive rather than exclusive.

Our Sunday schedule is, approximately:

  • 3:00 – 3:30: gentle kirtan
  • 3:30 – 4:45: philosophical presentation & questions
  • 4:45 – 5:15: arati & kirtan
  • 5:15 – 6:00: free vegetarian feast (donations welcome)

Culture and Temple Activities

The whole process of spiritual culture is aimed at changing the heart of the living being in the matter of his eternal relation with the Supreme Lord as subordinate servant, which is his eternal constitutional position.
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada,purport Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 2.3.24

Sunday Feast

dublin krishna sunday feast dancing kirtan

The main event every week for Hare Krishna temples worldwide is the famous Sunday Feast in which we celebrate kirtan before and after a philosophical presentation, which can always be appreciated by newcomers, and then share a free vegetarian feast, open to the public.

Weekly Kirtan

dublin krishna temple kirtan

Kirtan — musical chanting — brings us together for a number of improvised musical renditions of our Hare Krishna mantra, with accompaniment on traditional Indian musical instruments, in a beautiful & meditative temple setting. Free & no musical or spiritual experience required!

Kirtan Class

bhajan on the green with Sanghamitra devi

Our Thursday afternoon kirtan class teaches the words and music that glorify the Supreme through song.  These traditional Indian songs of praise, in Bengali and Sanskrit, awaken love and devotion in one’s heart and encourage the development of true self-realisation.

Harinam

harinam premarnava amita krishna

The socially interactive face or our chanting — Harinam, or public sankirtan — brings us to familiar places on the streets of Dublin to share the ecstatic aspect of kirtan with the hearts of passers-by. Learn more about why we do this & how you might be interested in participating.

Ratha Yatra

dublin ratha yatra 2012 o'connell street

Every year through the streets of Dublin we have an amazing, unique parade based on the centuries-old celebration in Jagannath Puri, India — the Ratha Yatra, or Festival of the Chariots — with a public park festival honouring Indian culture and Vaishnava spiritual principles.

dublin gaura purnima abhisheka

Daily Arati & Ashram life

dublin gaura purnima abhisheka

Our Dublin temple is maintained from day to day by brahmacārīs (monks) and initiated devotees who reside in the ashram – a refuge for those living according to regulative principles and without the influence of the outside world’s social activities.

One who engages in full devotional service, unfailing in all circumstances, at once transcends the modes of material nature and thus comes to the level of Brahman.Bhagavad-gītā 14.26

Donations to the temple, such as contributions to the donation box, help maintain this spartan lifestyle. Currently a very small living space must host four permanent beds plus improvised arrangements for travelling monks and pilgrims to our temple community. 

radha krishna shaligram shilasRegardless of the external conditions, our in-dwelling Temple community maintains strict standards of Vedic monastic culture, observing mangal arati every morning at 4:30am without fail, which temple pilgrims are welcome to attend. Those interested should please contact dublin@krishna.ie.

Vedic Philosophy classes: Bhakti Śastrī

krishna teaches arjuna

TheVedas, written in India 5,000 years ago based on an oral tradition stretching back through prehistory, are the oldest scriptures in the world and contain all forms of religious practice and worldly endeavour. In our spiritual community we first study the Bhagavad-gītā which explains the purpose of life and the means of achieving happiness, in the words of Lord Krishna to his best friend and devotee Arjuna.

“All purposes served by a small well can at once be served by a great reservoir of water. Similarly, all the purposes of the Vedas can be served to one who knows the purpose behind them.”
Bhagavad-gītā 2.46

Interested students may also pursue the Bhakti Śastrī programme, meaning devotion to scripture, with an exam and degree-like certificate. This optional preparation contains, and is integrated with, our introductory Vedic studies… so our regular classes often contain both serious and informal students.

Philosophy and Spiritual Practice

Our activities are chosen to introduce Krishna Consciousness to newcomers and develop this consciousness in devotees.  We recognise that spiritual science can free us from anxiety and eventually produce a state of supreme happiness, which is the soul’s natural state.

Religion without philosophy is sentiment, or sometimes fanaticism, while philosophy without religion is mental speculation.A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada,purport Bhagavad-gītā 3.3

It is a common precept of the world’s religions that the soul of Man is incomplete without God.  The study and devotional service of Krishna are a practical method for achieving this completeness, whatever one’s religious preconceptions may be.

 

Introduction to Krishna

krishna with jivas in animal bodies

 

Discover, through reading and discussion, the stories from the Śrīmad Bhāgavatam as they reveal the personality of God’s supreme self… spiritual adventures of love, longing, and transcendence. Join us on Wednesday and Thursday evenings, open to those of all philosophical backgrounds.

 

The Golden Avatar

chaitanya320x240

 

Learn about the joyful duties of mankind in the modern age through the life and teachings of Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya Mahāprabhu, the founder of the Sankirtan movement and personification of the Lord Krishna’s own relationship of devotion with His devotees.

 

Vedic Studies

krishna arjuna blow their conchshells

 

The teachings of Lord Krishna to his best friend and devotee Arjuna in the Bhagavad-gītā outline a method by which all spirit souls may attain their true nature.  In our Monday night drop-in class, come to learn and discuss these time-honoured teachings of Indian spiritual culture.

 

Arati & Ashram

dublin temple flower arati

 

Our Dublin Temple maintains a Vedic monastic culture in the heart of the City Centre, with classical Vaishnava practices, such as arati, strictly observed yet welcome to public participation.  Learn about the monks and devotees who maintain the refuge (ashram) of our spiritual environment.

 

ISKCON Educational Services

school-kirtan160x120

 

ISKCON Educational Services (IES) brings the gift of Hindu culture, philosophy and religious studies to your school or community centre. Programmes include question & answer sessions and kirtan in which our hosts often happily participate… a unique experience for students & teachers alike.

History of ISKCON in Dublin

Tribhuvanatha in St. Stephen's Green

by Praghosa das and Manu das

One of the first devotees to land on Irish soil in the early seventies did so on a motorbike, with the intention of getting a slot on the famous TV program,The Late Late Show. The devotee’s name was Tribhuvanatha and, being Irish, he knew this would be an excellent opportunity to introduce the fledgling Krishna movement to the people of Ireland. Although unsuccessful in his attempt, it would not be too long before the first group of devotees began to sing and dance on the highways and byways of Ireland.

In the spring of 1973, Prabhavisnu brought a group of devotees to Dublin and they met with a good response, distributing books and chanting on the streets. At first they slept in their van, parked in the hills outside Dublin. Then they rented a bungalow in Sutton and on Sundays up to 60 people turned up to chant and honour prasadam with them.

Dublin Belvedere Place

Late in 1975 when Kripamoya from London gave Tulasi Priya his first book on Henry Street, the Sutton base had long gone. The first major temple in Dublin was located at Belvedere Place (left) which opened in 1978; it was from here that Adi Karta first registered the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) as a charity in Ireland.

Very soon after that, Prithu came from Germany to establish what was perhaps the most rapid membership expansion of the Hare Krishna movement in Ireland. There was also then a high profile appearance onThe Late Late Show which helped make the devotees a household name.

Templeogue Castlefield houseIn 1982 the devotees decided to move from Belvedere Place to Castlefield House in Templeogue (right). The deities Nitai Sacinandana, originally installed in the Edinburgh temple, also moved from Belvedere Place to Templeogue. Castlefield House was surrounded by several acres of grassland, affording guests to the temple a tranquil atmosphere several miles from the city.

Then in 1983, the deities Sri Sri Radha Madhava, who now reside in Belfast, were installed and Castlefield House became the first Radha Krishna temple in Ireland. However, within a year or so, ISKCON’s charity status was removed due to the prevailing mood at the time in Ireland, where the growing number of shaven headed, saffron robed devotees were viewed with a mixture of curiosity and suspicion! Devotees feared, rightly or wrongly, that forces with far more influence than themselves had swayed the decision makers as far as the removal of ISKCON’s charity status was concerned.

As a result of this uncertainty, the devotees chose not to purchase property in Southern Ireland and Sri Sri Radha Madhava, who were installed in Dublin, were moved to Northern Ireland. After a lot of endeavor by Saunaka Rsi, who enlisted the help of many international scholars and several sympathetic politicians, the decision to revoke our charitable status was rescinded.

Dublin Dawson lane

Soon after a downtown centre was set up at Dawson Lane (left) by Uddhava and when Castlefield House was closed in 1985, the devotees rented a house in Clontarf, still tending every day to the preaching centre at Dawson Lane. A little while later the devotees left Clontarf and for a brief period moved to an organic farm in Navan, Co. Meath, traveling each day to the Dawson Lane centre. Yet again though, after a short period, a new devotee base was established in Dun Laoghaire.

Dublin Crow StreetThat also did not last long and after another short stay in a rented house in Stillorgan, we opened our first restaurant,The Golden Avatar, which was situated at Crow street (right) in the Temple Bar area of the city; this became both a temple and a residence for the devotees. The Sunday feast attendance increased to over 120 again, as it had done in both Belvedere Place and Castlefield House, and it seemed the risk taken to rent such a high profile location was fully justified.

Unfortunately, owing to very high overheads and changing personnel, the project had to be dropped in 1988 and the devotees were on the move again, this time to Ratoath, Co. Meath. A hall was hired each week in Dublin City Centre for the Sunday Program.

Dublin 3 Temple Lane

A little over a year after the closure of the temple/restaurant in Crow St, a new Temple was opened, one street down in Temple Bar and aptly named Temple Lane (left). For over two years, festivals and events were hosted there and this attracted the newly returned, more experienced preacher Tribhuvanatha.

Dublin Dame Street Krishna Temple 1995

After the lease was finished in Temple Lane in 1992, Tribhuvanatha began another centre a few yards up the street, this time on the more high profile Dame St. (right, the Centra today), at its intersection with Georges St. Hence thousands of cars and pedestrians passed each day witnessing the huge lettering ofHare Krishna Cultural Centre; thus many people got their first experience of the movement.

Dublin South William StreetHowever, by 1995 we were out of a lease again and devotees searched around for yet another location for our wandering congregation. By Govardhana Puja that year we were in that new location on South William St (left) and for 18 months, under the stewardship of Mahotsaha, we set up a temple again. After 18 months however, we were on the road again and after a short occupancy at a property in Ringsend, owned by John and Abhaya Leader, a new approach took place.

On the 1st of April 1998, Praghosa and Goloka opened our firstGovinda’s restaurant at 4 Aungier St. The Sunday program continued there for some years but it wasn’t until the acquiring of our secondGovinda’s on Abbey St. that a real sense of a stable temple resumed in Dublin.

Dublin Govinda's on Abbey StreetGovinda’s on Abbey Street (left) was specifically acquired to have a facility which could serve as both a temple and restaurant, the formula being that the restaurant would subsidize the temple, allowing the temple devotees to be relieved of the pressure of having to generate Laksmi for maintenance, thus freeing them to utilize their full energy in spreading the message of Krishna consciousness.

A third restaurant was then added in Merrion Row and a full renovation project was undertaken by Praghosa and Janmastami to update the existing temple in Abbey Street into the lovely temple it is today, with our beautiful Sri Sri Panca Tattva presiding.

Now for the next and no doubt greatest development for ISKCON Dublin…

Dublin Krishna Temple activity schedule – Worship, Kirtan, Bhajan and Vedic Studies

Last schedule change: 08 July 2020

Due to the current lockdown situation, all our temple programs are restricted and will be broadcast online.

DayTimeProgrammeFee
Sunday3:30pmSunday Feast (music, food, and philosophy)Free
Monday7:00pmSkype Reading – Nectar Of DevotionFree
Tuesday6:30pmTuesday Night KirtanFree
Thursday7:00pmSkype Reading – Nectar Of DevotionFree

Please check our Facebook Page for more recent updates of events and festivals.

Feast Days & Special Events

Map & Directions

A growing community of Krishna Consciousness in the heart of Dublin City

Welcome to the Irish centres of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), which have been established for this primary purpose:

1. To systematically propagate spiritual knowledge to society at large and to educate all people in the techniques of spiritual life in order to check the imbalance of values in life and to achieve real unity and peace in the world.A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada,Seven Purposes of ISKCON

Our Founder

srila prabhupada

Learn about His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda, Founder-Acarya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness — his origins, his amazing life story, and the achievements that have spread the Krishna Consciousness movement all over the modern world.

Our Dublin temple supports a growing number of spiritual activities every week, including classical Vedic scripture and yoga studies, devotional service by ashram dwellers and community members alike, and a weekly celebration with song and feasting which is free and open to the public.

Philosophical Activities

Krishna-Arjuna300x225

Our spiritual beliefs are based in the ancient Vedas of India, written in Sanskrit 5,000 years ago and dating back through prehistory, answering eternal questions that are just as pressing in modern life.  You are welcome to attend our free evening classes to progress through introductory Vedic studies in a friendly atmosphere.

 

Cultural Activities

ratha yatra musical procession

Kirtan, or chanting together, is at the centre of our spiritual practice, as is the sharing of spiritualised food (prasādam).  You will find all of these at our free Sunday Feast which is open to all.  Most days of the week also have yoga classes, and every year we look forward to our Ratha Yatra parade festival.