Religions of India Transcription Project Update V

WE DID IT!!! All 80 of Hridayananda das Goswami’s Religions of India lectures have been transcribed and edited. Meaning that, in the course of this project, over half a million words have been transcribed then checked-for-accuracy and over 1500+ hours have been volunteered to make it happen.

We feel incapable of properly thanking and recognizing everyone for their contribution to this project. But, let us start off by honoring Jenya dd, whose initiative launched this project over a year ago in 2012. Due to her enthusiasm, our first transcribers stepped forward and began this daunting task. In addition, for the past two months, Jenya has been responsible for the final audit of every transcription, clocking in some 2-3 hours every day.

We would also like to thank Ananta Vrindavan das, who facilitated and funded the transcription of 40+ lectures. When it looked as if we would never finish, Ananta Vrindavan offered to help and made arrangements with a professional transcription agency to ensure a timely completion of the project. His support has been invaluable.

Moreover, we are awarding Duhkhahantri dd the unsung hero award. Having type-set the majority of Srila Prabhupada’s books during the formative years of the BBT (imagine doing this work on a typewriter!), Duhkhahantri contacted us two months ago and offered her services. Since then, she has personally transcribed and checked-for-accuracy over a dozen lectures with utmost precision and diligence.

But, ultimately, it was the collaborative effort of our entire transcription team that carried us to completion. The following is a list of devotees who contributed by transcribing and/or checking transcripts for accuracy:

Acyutananda das
Ananda Krishna dd
Ananta Vrindavan das
Anthony King
Anuj Singh Ghai
Anuradha dasi
Arka das
Bhavasindhu das
Chase Connolly
Ciprian Begu
Daniel Parrasales
Dhananjaya das
Duhkhahantri dd
Emily Dietzel
Emily Penney
Hannah Sandal
Jagannatha das
Jaya Gauri dd
Jaya Sita dd
Jeannette Franks
Jenya dd
Jordanna Rock-Garden
Krishna Mohini dd
Krishna Swarupa das
Krishni Metivier
Lali dd
Leese Hartman
Mahattama dd
Michael Olabode
Nimisha devi
Radhika dd
Shanti Day
Varesha dd

And now for a brief, comic interlude. Below is a collection of the “Best of ROI Transcription Bloopers:”

…I’ll read a poem by [Caviar] and explain why I think it’s beautiful and problematic.
edited: Kabir

Classical yogis…sit down in different [pastures] and meditate.
edited: postures

The bondage of work in this world, you do something and then you get a [comic] reaction, good or bad.
edited: karmic

You find some people who are just totally into the karma aspect, who are called [Karmanese].
edited: karmis

You come into a temple, you give a [ruby] or…
edited: rupee

…Iconoclastic furies in Holland and Belgium which are now [real] countries.
edited: very liberal

The three great texts of Vedanta: the Upanishads, [Kama Sutras] and the Bhagavad-gita.
edited: Brahma-sutras

So, keep going here, [Gus]…
edited: thus

[Bhakti Vantuswami]…
edited: Bhaktivedanta Swami

He married many women but each one had their own Krishna, which is [not a] very interesting story.
edited: another

…anyway, I won’t go [in blood] textual Sanskrit.
edited: into a lot of

…chosen as something like the Dalai Lama of theosophy, in the sense that [any peasant] who was the prominent leader after Madam Blavatsky.
edited: Annie Besant

Now, at this point, they are very [pathetic]; they are wandering around and there are certain characteristics of that kind of lifestyle.
edited: peripatetic

That’s what St. Francis did, he just kind of wandered around naked and he [wore a really big shoe].
edited: was a real bhiksu

Well, wait a second, [probably you’re guessing this is a castle].
edited: I thought we were against the caste system.

Now, if you’re not a celibate [mink], forget it.
edited: monk

Krishna spoke Bhagavad-gita to the [Son of God].
edited: sun god

fanatical sectarian religions coming from the Middle East- by the way of [you’re up and it’s long]…
edited: Europe and Islam

His liberal mind saw wisdom spiritual [soulless] in all the great religions of the world.
edited: solace

India has always had a lot of [marry time trading].
edited: maritime trade

…and they started to raise a native [Malaysia].
edited: militia

…but he was like a Vedic [pirate]. He wants to do away with the Puranas and Tantras and all this stuff.
edited: purist

We want to let you know that the completed transcriptions have now been delivered to our professional editor. Although our original idea was to publish a book that would combine the fall and spring lectures into one cohesive seminar, we are following our editor’s advice to reorganize the entirety of the course in order to emphasize Acharyadeva’s running narrative throughout both semesters regarding the persistence of personalism in Indian religious history. In this way, we hope to make a significant and riveting intellectual contribution that will, not only further fortify Prabhupada’s efforts to defeat Mayavada philosophy, but will also capture the hearts and minds of the general public as well.

Although the book-editing process will take upwards of a year, in the meantime we would like to make all of the transcriptions easily accessible and available as a single downloadable file. To this end, we are looking for a volunteer to format all 80 transcriptions into a single .pdf file as a Vyasa-puja offering to Srila Acharyadeva on November 7, 2013. Please contact us if you have a desire to take on this service. Before then, however, you can view regular installments of the ROI lecture transcriptions at!

Several of you have expressed your desire to continue this type of service for Acharyadeva and we would be thrilled to continue engaging you in his service. In this regard, there are several other ongoing and immediate projects for you to get involved with, in addition to an infinite variety of projects we can embark on. Next week, we will post a more detailed letter describing specific services we are seeking.

Once again, thank you, everyone, for your dedication to Srila Acharyadeva and our ROI transcription project. WE DID IT!!! It has been an honor to work with such generous volunteers and dedicated devotees. May we all increasingly recognize the blessings and transcendental gifts of devotional service in our everyday lives. Hare Krishna!

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