A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Organization founder

1896 – 1977


Who was A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada?

Abhay Charanaravinda Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada was a Gaudiya Vaishnava teacher and the founder-acharya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness, commonly known as the "Hare Krishna Movement". His mission was to propagate Gaudiya Vaishnavism, a school of Vaishnavite Hinduism that had been taught to him by his guru, Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati, throughout the world. Born Abhay Charan De in Calcutta, he was educated at the prestigious local Scottish Church College. Before adopting the life of a pious renunciant in 1950, he was married with children and owned a small pharmaceutical business. In 1959 he took a vow of renunciation and started writing commentaries on Vaishnava scriptures. In his later years, as a traveling Vaishnava monk, he became an influential communicator of Gaudiya Vaishnava theology to India and specifically to the West through his leadership of ISKCON, founded in 1966. As the founder of ISKCON, he "emerged as a major figure of the Western counterculture, initiating thousands of young Americans." Despite attacks from anti-cult groups, he received a favorable welcome from many religious scholars, such as J. Stillson Judah, Harvey Cox, Larry Shinn and Thomas Hopkins, who praised Bhaktivedanta Swami's translations and defended the group against distorted media images and misinterpretations. In respect to his achievements, religious leaders from other Gaudiya Vaishnava movements have also given him credit.


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Sep 1, 1896
Also known as
  • Abhay Charanaravinda Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
  • A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
  • A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
  • Hinduism
  • International Society for Krishna Consciousness
  • Gaudiya Vaishnavism
  • India
  • University of Calcutta
  • Scottish Church College, Calcutta
Lived in
  • Kolkata
  • Vrindavan
Nov 14, 1977

on July 23, 2013