His Grace Ananta-santi Prabhu

Dear Devotees,

Please accept our humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

A few days ago, we were shocked and saddened to hear of the departure of our dear godbrother, Ananta-santi Prabhu, a legend in the history of the Krsna consciousness movement.

In 1971, at the invitation of Professor Kotovsky, His Divine Grace visited Moscow with a desire to plant the seed of bhakti in an otherwise spiritually desolate land restrained under the Communist regime. Five days later, Srila Prabhupada departed from Moscow having not only shared the wealth of Krsna consciousness, but miraculously leaving behind a newly initiated disciple — the first Russian Gaudiya Vaisnava.

That glorious Vaisnava, lovingly named Ananta-santi Das by His Divine Grace, would go on to become a hero for generations of devotees to come.

After Srila Prabhupada left Moscow in 1971, Ananta-santi Prabhu toiled with faith and dedication to offer the gift of Krsna-bhakti to the Russian
people. In a heavily monitored culture marked by the government’s severe opposition to spirituality, he risked his life to preach and teach from the one precious Bhagavad-gita As It Is that Srila Prabhupada’s secretary had left behind.

Ananta-santi Prabhu, and the devotees he cultivated, secretly distributed handwritten copies of the book far and wide, all the while keeping the
rapidly spreading Krsna consciousness movement underground.

As Ananta-santi Prabhu’s preaching became more and more successful, the government also began to take note. In the early 1980′s, he was captured by the government and imprisoned. His crime? Unrelenting faith in the instructions of his spiritual master and trying to teach spiritual knowledge and devotion to Lord Krishna. Although he managed to escape from prison, the government persisted and he was caught again, this time, sentenced to an indefinite sentence in a psychiatric facility.

For years, Ananta-santi Prabhu suffered unmentionable torture at the hands of government-employed doctors. Eventually, due to a world-wide campaign, members of the International Society for Krsna Consciousness were able to draw attention to his plight and even the Prime Minister of Australia personally requested Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev to release Ananta-santi Prabhu.

Today, due to the intense desire of Srila Prabhupada and the sacrifices of Ananta-santi prabhu and those who followed him, Krishna consciousness is being practiced throughout Russia and in many countries of the former Soviet Union.

Every year, thousands upon thousands of devotees congregate together to chant the Holy Names and hear from the same sacred texts that Ananta-santi Prabhu gave years of his life to introduce to his nation.

Innumerable Russian Gaudiya Vaisnavas provide the world with an ideal example of enthusiastically practicing and spreading Krsna consciousness.

For this, we must offer our sincere gratitude at the feet of His Grace Ananta-santi Prabhu.

Amidst deep remorse at the loss of his association, we pray at the lotus of Srila Prabhupada that we may have the opportunity to again have Ananta-santi Prabhu’s association in the service of His Divine Grace’s preaching mission.

Hare Krsna,

Your servants,

Tamohara Das
Anuttama Das
Praghosa Das,
GBC Executive Committee


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