Here is the extraordinary person who dedicated his life to teaching the world about Krishna consciousness, ancient India's most noble message of spiritual wisdom.
Srila Prabhupada wrote more than eighty volumes of translation and commentaries on such classics as Srimad Bhagavatam, Chaitanya Charitamrita, and the Bhagavad-gita As It Is. He wrote not only as a scholar, but as a consummate practitioner. He taught not only through his writings, but by the example of his life.
Throughout his works, Srila Prabhupada's mood was to convey the natural meaning of the scriptures without far-fetched interpretations, giving us an authentic rendition of the Vedic conclusions on such important topics as the purpose of human life, the nature of the soul, consciousness, and God.
In 1965, on behalf of a distinguished line of masters dating back thousands of years, Srila Prabhupada sailed from India to New York at the age of 69 to share Lord Krishna's message. He brought with him nothing more than the clothes on his back, a box of books, and $7 worth of change. In the years that followed, He traveled and taught throughout the world, opened 108 temples, and formed the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON).
Srila Prabhupada also inspired the construction of several large international cultural centers in India. The center at Sridhama Mayapur is the site for a planned spiritual city, an ambitious project for which construction will extend over many years to come. In Vrndavana are the magnificent Krsna-Balarama Temple and International Guesthouse, gurukula school, and Srila Prabhupada Memorial and Museum. Major cultural and educational centers are in Bombay.
Srila Prabhupada's most significant contribution, however, is his books. Highly respected by scholars for their authority, depth, and clarity, they are used as textbooks in numerous college courses. His writings have been translated into over fifty languages. The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust, established in 1972 to publish the works of His Divine Grace, has thus become the world's largest publisher of books in the field of Indian religion and philosophy.
In just twelve years, despite his advanced age, Srila Prabhupada circled the globe fourteen times on lecture tours that took him to six continents. Yet this vigorous schedule did not slow his prolific literary output. His writings constitute a veritable library of Vedic philosophy, religion, literature, and culture.
Though no longer physically present among us, he lives forever in his books, and in the hearts of those whose lives he touched.