Are Hare Krishna devotees Hindus?

The question of ISKCON’s identity in relationship to Hinduism has often drawn complex and contradictory responses. For instance, those of South Asian origin often begin their relationship with ISKCON based on their understanding that it represents the same Hindu religion they followed at home. Other members of ISKCON advocate that the Society has little or nothing to do with Hinduism.

This has raised a debate within some circles in ISKCON. Temples that have large Hindu congregations and identify themselves with their local Hindu communities—such as England’s Bhaktivedanta Manor—have come under fire from ISKCON members who feel strongly that we are not Hindus and should not be identified as such. To support their stance, they often quote ISKCON founder Srila Prabhupada out of context, saying “we are not Hindus.” Read more…

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