Bridgitte Jackson-Buckley
3 min readJul 11, 2017


Since the premiere at the Illuminate Festival and having won the coveted 2017 Feature Competition Jury Prize, it appears that John Griesser and Lauren Ross have hit their mark.

The new documentary, Hare Krishna! The Mantra, the Movement and the Swami who started it all is on a ‘sold out’ streak and continues to captivate audiences.

Filled with riveting archival footage that draws viewers back to the humble beginnings of the emergence of Krishna Consciousness and a new spiritual movement in the west, Hare Krishna! The Mantra, the Movement and the Swami who started it all is a cinematic breath of fresh air that could not have been released at a more appropriate time.

At a time when chaos on the world “stage” appears to be contagious, Hare Krishna! eloquently reiterates one of Swami Prabhupada’s most pertinent messages that was brought to the west more than 50 years ago and yet remains vitally relevant today:

“Forget politics. What the world needs is a revolution of consciousness.”

“By raising our level of consciousness and expanding our awareness — in the midst of personal trials and global challenges — we can effectively alleviate not just our own suffering but also the suffering of those around us.”

“We are eternal souls, sparks of God,” was the essence of Prabhupada’s message that resonated with many individuals who yearned for a profound and meaningful connection to something greater than themselves.

“When Prabhupada came to the west 50 years ago, the Vaishnava culture, which is the Krishna worshipping tradition of India, had not ever planted roots in Western soil.”

Hare Krishna! chronicles when Prabhupada arrived in New York, many were socially and politically adrift due to the societal rifts that challenged the 60’s. Many longed for something other than political and societal discord. A deeper connection to something greater than themselves was introduced with Krishna Consciousness to those who were willing to step outside of the status quo.

Against the backdrop of a heart-opening musical score by Michael Mollura, the film takes viewers on a compelling journey of what it looked like for Prabhupada and his newly gathered followers to embrace and hold the vision for the emergence of Krishna Consciousness in new geographical areas.

Highlighting moments of unanticipated resources and helpful people that emerged at just the right moments to continue forward movement, Hare Krishna! captures Prabhupada’s “unflinching determination and faith” which led by example how to hold the energetic space for the unfoldment of something not yet seen in certain geographical areas.

With the formation of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), Prabhupada helped to further demonstrate the allotted “abundance of spiritual energies and possibilities for those who are willing to step forward to do the work in the best interests of humanity — regardless of any worldly affiliation or political viewpoint.”

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Bridgitte Jackson-Buckley

“I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.” | |