We may think that one who has a big house on Juhu beach or one who is driving a fancy car or one who has a beautiful wife, is fortunate. But the real fortunate person is the one who takes to the process of devotional service; one who understands that Krsna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead; one who does not misuse his human life.
His Holiness Gopal Krishna Goswami Maharaja appeared on this planet on the most auspicious day of Annada Ekadashi, on August 14, 1944, in New Delhi, India.
H. H. Gopal Krishna Goswami Maharaja after graduating from the University of Delhi, studied Business Management at the Sorbonne University of Paris on a scholarship from the French Government and later, obtained a Masters Degree in Business Administration from the McGill University at Montreal.
H. H. Gopal Krishna Goswami Maharaja first met Srila Prabhupada the Founder Acharya of ISKCON, in the evening of June 1st, 1968. Within the first two weeks of meeting Srila Prabhupada, he decided that he would accept him as his spiritual master. Around that time, he was working for Pepsi-Cola, doing Marketing Research.
In 1975, Srila Prabhupada sent H.H. Gopal Krishna Goswami to India. Srila Prabhupada made him the General Body Commissioner (GBC) of entire India. Srila Prabhupada specifically instructed him to print and expand book-distribution in India. Also, Srila Prabhupada entrusted H.H. Gopal Krishna Goswami Maharaja to oversee various important projects, such as Vrindavana, Hyderabad, Mayapur and Mumbai, recognizing his dedicated service and mood of sincere surrender.
In 1976, Srila Prabhupada appointed H. H. Gopal Krishna Goswami Maharaja as G.B.C. for Russia. He made several trips to Soviet Union, a communist state (now called the Commonwealth of Independent States) and risking grave dangers, he preached and distributed books over there. On the instruction of Srila Prabhupada, he took part in the International Book Fair. He helped to establish many centers in the erstwhile Soviet Union.
Acceptance of Sannyasa Order
In 1981, H. H. Gopal Krishna Goswami Maharaja took the sannyasa order. A year later, in March 1982, on the auspicious day of Gaura-Purnima, H. H. Gopal Krishna Goswami Maharaja became a ‘diksha’ guru (an initiating spiritual master).
At present, H. H. Gopal Krishna Goswami Maharaja is the G.B.C. for Mumbai, Northern India (that includes New Delhi, Haryana, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Vrindavana, and Chandigarh), Mayapur, Kenya, Canada, some states of America, and many parts of the former Commonwealth of Independent States. Also, he is the Chairman and Trustee of the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust, the world’s largest publisher and distributor of Vedic literatures.
He is also the Chairman of the ISKCON Bureau which is the Legal entity or the Formal name for ISKCON.
H. H. Gopal Krishna Goswami Maharaja is engaged in inspiring and completing many of the largest ISKCON temples after the departure of Srila Prabhupada in 1977. One of the important temple projects completed under his untiring and dedicated efforts and directions was the Sri Sri Radha-Parthasarathi temple in New Delhi. This is also known as “Glory of India” project), and was inaugurated by Sri Atal Bihari Vajpayee, the then Prime Minister of India. It provides a multi-media visual display, a Vedic cultural museum and an open air theater. Also, the ‘Heaven on Earth’ project, inaugurated in December 2003 in Mumbai, is housed with modern facilities for imparting the essence of vedic scriptures to spiritual seekers, a mass feeding hall, a library with a reading room, a vedic samskara hall, besides a spiritually nourishing Govinda’s restaurant.
Besides, the bhumi pujana for Sri Sri Radha-Madana-Mohana temple in Khargar (Navi Mumbai), the proposed ISKCON center at the Sri Sri Radha-Gopinath and Ashta Sakhis temple in Ludhiana, called the ‘Glory of Punjab’, ISKCON temple at Rohini, New Delhi and Sri Sri Radha-Vrindavanchandra temple in Pune have also been accomplished. Additional land has also been procured in Kurukshetra and Vrindavana for expanding preaching programs.
Apart from all these, His Holiness is the Initiating Guru for more than 20,000 disciples worldwide- taking care of their spiritual growth, moral emancipation and above all Life style Management keeping Krishna at the center. Many of Maharaja’s leading disciples are social luminaries, intellectuals and leading lights in their sphere of activity. Maharaja travels across the world for more than 6 months in a year covering important projects and ISKCON temples besides handholding spiritual aspirants in scores of countries including Russia, the erstwhile Soviet Union, USA, Canada, Kenya and many other parts of the world.