Srila Prabhupada wanted to establish Farm Communities on a Larger Scale. But generally devotees do not act or even do not discuss on this topic due to their big assumption, ‘Why we are the only ones doing?’. Now, if someone tries to discuss on Farm Community Projects, fellow devotees say that why only our community want this strange idea to be implemented because no one else is doing it or even bothered to discuss it.
Farm community concept is being used by various groups of people throughout the world, particularly in the western world.
Example of Farm Community Project- Simple living
‘Amish’ are a group of traditionalist Christian church. The Amish are known for simple living, plain dress, and reluctance to adopt many conveniences of modern technology. The Amish church began to exist in 1693 by Jakob Amman. Amish emerged from Anabaptism movement. The mainstream
Christianity allows baptism(similar to initiation) of babies. Anabaptism movement does not allow baptism of babies. Rather than the baptism of babies they perform adult baptism with the ideology that babies do not have the intelligence to choose to accept the ‘Will of God’, if an individual accepts the ‘Will of God’ by his own free will, then he should be baptized.
Amish people live simply. They are mainly indulging in farming. They do not use any type of modern technology( but now some means of modern technology is used). They even do not educate their children not more than 8th standard and avoid contacts from modern city people. Rather they focus on teaching scriptures ie. Bible.
They don’t use telephones, cars, tractors, radios and many other technological inventions of the 20th century. According to their philosophy, the use of modern technology makes the mind of the person contaminated with material desires.
It’s amazing that basic principles of simple living and high thinking are the same which are prescribed in Vedic Shastras. And Amish population is increasing with great numbers. See the table below of the population within the USA.
|U.S. state||Amish pop. in 1992||Amish pop. in 2000||Amish pop. in 2010||Amish pop. in 2019|
Their population is increasing every year and they even avoid using health insurance.
And the most amazing thing is that with such living they have achieved something very extraordinary in today’s world. I am quoting directly from Wikipedia.
“Amish are protected against many types of cancer both through their lifestyle—there is very little tobacco or alcohol use and limited sexual partners—and through genes that may reduce their susceptibility to cancer. Dr. Judith Westman, director of human genetics at OSUCCC-James, conducted the study.”
(Although they are subjected some genetic disorder due to their inbreeding tradition within their community in past)
Because of their simple lifestyle they are able to protect themselves from various diseases.
“In a study released last November, researchers at Northwestern University announced the discovery of a gene in an Amish community that seemed to be associated with an average life span 10% longer than that of people without the gene.”Source:- http://time.com/5159857/amish-people-stay-healthy-in-old-age-heres-their-secret/
Today, people are selling “ Simple living high thinking”. In the western world now there is a concept of Agrihoods in which people who own a big piece of land will make some quarters and provide equipment for agriculture and families from cities will come and give the landlord some money to live for few months or so.
Even people who are not at all associated with the Hare Krishna movement are making farm communities in India and serving the cows.
Devotees generally get demotivated when they see that most of the farm community projects established by disciples of Srila Prabhupada are still not fully self-sufficient. Still farm communities need donations for some of there resources. But this doesn’t mean that they will not be successful.
I have been to the Nandgram farm community project in Gujarat. In the beginning there were only 3 families. But now there are more than 10 families and 36 Gurukul students. Now they are even able to manufacture cotton threads and producing clothes. New quarters are being constructed for the new families.
So devotees should understand that in the beginning it takes time to establish things that are required. We have to be patient and just keep on acting towards fulfilling the desire of Srila Prabhupada. If the disciples and grand disciples of Prabhupada will not act, then who will act to fulfill this desire of Prabhupada?
We should have faith in Krsna just like all the devotees who left their jobs/businesses in the city and working day and night to establishing farm community.
And, this desire of Srila Prabhupada is non-different from the desire of Supreme Lord Krsna as he himself showed by his pastime.
Farm Community life, Krsna personally Exhibited
‘If we keep cows and grow food grains, fruits, vegetables, then we can live very peacefully like that. There is no need of going to the city. That is the plan of God, Krsna. Krsna personally exhibited. Vrndävana is village; it is not city. We are trying to go to the village of Krsna—Vrndävana.’(Srila Prabhupada arrival lecture May 25,1975, Honolulu)
If the others can do, then for the pleasure of Srila Prabhupada we can also do.
Srila Prabhupada had this clear view from the very beginning of this movement. That’s why Srila Prabhupada opened the New Vrindavan farm community, to have a simple life.
We should all participate together to establish farm communities to please Srila Prabhupada and make our devotional life as well as of our next generation safe and healthy.
(Disciple of H.H. Bhakti Vikas Swami(Disciple of Srila Prabhupada))