SWAMIJI – Photographic Expressions of a Golden Age

Photographic Expressions of a Golden Age

COMING SOON… a collector’s edition, large format hardbound volume presenting Gurudas’ photographic rendering of the historic, worldwide expansion of an ancient transcendental movement.

Sign up (link in comments) for exclusive content, and to be among the first to be offered this important work.


Gurudas’ photo archive is rich and deep. Each image seems to capture the profound love and wonderment surrounding Swamiji, as he spread this ‘Krishna consciousness’ movement everywhere.

For those who sign up early, we’ll be setting up an exclusive website where you can experience parts of the book coming together, and maybe even some clips of Gurudas sharing some valuable backstory to his collection.

Photo by Yadubara Dasa

From the moment Gurudas met SWAMIJI, his life (and camera) were in service to this momentous ‘happening’. Our journey will begin at the counter-culture’s epicenter, Haight-Ashbury in the late sixties, proceed to London, where many – including the Beatles – played an intimate role, and then on to India, the geographical source of this transcendental wave!

An interactive, high resolution digital format will also be available.

Sign up here for exclusive content, and to be among the first to be offered this important work.

Because Bliss is for Everyone

When our hearts are filled with Krishna’s love, we often want to share that love through acts of kindness and compassion.

Compassionate Care is another form of prasadam (mercy), as is our giving of Shastra readings (ancient scriptures), kirtan (mantra music meditation), healthy prasadam (vegetarian blessed foodstuffs) according to the individual’s medical situation and the supporting of the family members’ needs.

If you are an empathetic soul, and want to care for other devotees, join one of our outreach support teams as they visit homes and hospitals in times of need. You won’t be required to administer any medication and we will train you in all the nuances of care.

To know more about our Vedic Care Vrindavan, click here. To meet the VCC OutReach Team please click here.

Please support us with Single or Monthly Donations here.

If you’d like to make your donation ‘monthly’, please go to our main Donation Page here and scroll down to see all options.

Your financial commitment makes the world of difference to those we’ll be able to help. Thank you.

* For ’cause specific’ donations, give to the ‘VCC Cause’ of your choice, or you can give to our ‘Anonymous Causes’. Thank you.
Please note that funds donated to a “cause” will be fully utilized for that person only.

For gifts by check, please request our post address here.

Thank you again for your kind support.

Vedic Care Model Facility

In our ‘Vedic Care Vrindavan’ we aim to provide ‘donations based treatments’ while encouraging recurring monthly donations to help those in dire need. So, as we establish ourselves with Love & Trust in Vrindavan, we’ll be offering these further services:

* ’Assisted Living Care’ starting with five free beds.
* Holistic clinic & natural treatments, and healing for the foreign devotees who can afford it, via our donations system.
* Free Open Holistic Clinic for locals in need (as we’re able).
* ’Preventive Medicine’ education for all; with free and paid Seminars.
* Intensive Courses on ‘Vedic Farming’, ’Hospice Care’, ‘End of Live Care’, ’Shradha Ceremony’ and the ‘Healing Arts’ for all devotees interested; free and donation based.
* Daily Prasadham distribution (as we become able to do so).

As this is the Vedic Care Model Facility, we’ll be encouraging, training, and supporting all devotees who wish to start their own Vedic Care Facility.

We have the will, the skills and the support. Now, with your involvement and blessings, we’ll soon be able to serve many more in need.

We’re getting ready to serve the local Brajwasis while refurbishments are done. To assist with that please sign up for any amount of monthly donations right away. We’ll keep you posted regarding this separately.

Meanwhile, we’re seeking the needed ‘Start Up’ funds to:

  1. Realize the upgrading, refurbishments and equipping of the building.
  2. Pay our staff in full (for the first two months) so no last minute volunteering issues will occur.
  3. Maintain full building operations, offering ‘Assisted Living Care’ (two months) with five beds for devotees in need.

To serve with us at our Vedic Care Vrindavan Model Facility, or donate these much needed funds for essential renovations and repairs, please VolunteerContact Us, or Donate.

When donating online, please consider ticking the ‘make this a monthly donation’ box, as the costs of care for those in need will be on-going, once our facility is open.

If you’d prefer to send a donation by check or direct debit to our Vedic Care Bank account, please request details and we’ll facilitate.

Thank you,
Gurudas & The VCC Core Team


By Gurudas
aka Roget Siegel

Oh country village
tulsi forest
named Vrindavan

Even the rocks are alive
for the pleasure of Govinda
the trees
are swaying hairs
twisted in a dance
with the Lord

Birds fly in and out
of the window
of my adobe hut
In Vrindavan animals and humans
geckos on walls
sparrows in the houses
monkeys swinging on electrical wires
bats flying
owls eating
peacocks calling
buffalo soaking
donkeys hauling
cows mooing
camels snorting
elephants trumpeting
horses neighing
as fathers watch
their children play
riding on a water buffalo’s back
in the Jamuna river

A clay pot
made of earth
is used and broken
merging back into the earth
A pair of shoes
or winter hat
are tailored from start to finish
children learning numbers spiritually
one God
two to love
three Dieties
Brahma Shiva and Vishnu
four Kumaris
five Rishis
six Goswamis
seven Temples
eight Gopis
nine gates of the body
ten directions

Auspicious guides
talk to me within
everything in order
exemplified by
all the new baby animals
that come out seasonally
when it’s their time

Positive portents
flags waving
full water buckets
elephants spewing water
saints singing

Ill omens show too
empty water pots
flags drooping
owls screeching
barking dogs
clouds raining blood
the left side of a face twitching
people cheating

We are minor players
darkness to light
eternal prayers
all day and night
We see the stars
and dance in the full moon

Goswamis and ancient sadhus
walked these sands
and form the backbone
of our path
pilgrims pray
while babas laugh

Let my love
in compassion’s ray
as nature’s play
come inside me and stay

Elusive Blue Boy
whom I don’t know
I can feel your shelter
in this protective place

Why then do I run away
from your home?
What compels me
in crowded cities?
Seduced by secondary illusions
accepted as primary importance
life’s cosmetic shadows
mix with soot
neon rays swallowed by
cracks in yellowing walls

Oh green hills I hear your call
I remember forest groves
where divinity romps
and magic pastimes abound

I snuggle in
Your milky bosom
softly I drink your essence
security in every drop
of holy water

Cows freely give religiosity
flowing from Surabi’s
milky drops

Your touchstone nectar
makes the lame walk
and the blind to see
Your silk like hair
is swaying kusha grass
the very straw mats
that sages pray on

Lying down on golden sands
as nearby Jamuna’s river shores
black and white striped birds
dive into Your watery mouth
Kalindi or jamuna you
flow to reunite with Mother Ganges
getting together
in Pravag’s Kumba mela place

Above demigods are
pulled by snowy swans
and scented water fountains
spray in celestial gardens
whilst they shower
us with rose petals
from above

we taste the tears of joy
from the great Rasa dance
as Krishna dances with the Gopis
with each cow girl individually
under the full moon light

Chakora birds eat moon beams
during all night chanting kirtans
I shared my heart
with ex-kings
and singing saints

Encircling you my holy Vrindavan
on parikrima path
in fresh morning’s dew
my bare feet
touching your white sands
makes me weep
Your sweetened countenance
is reflected in your pearly shores
or Madhuban forest glen
playing hide and seek

You offer Annapurna’s peaks
like a babe
I wander and drink
from mountainous breasts

In mystic forests
desire trees abound
kadamba and champa
hold the stolen clothes
of the Gopis
as they bathe
in the Jamuna River
lazily we play
and love in your boughs
dream in your branches
and wade on your banks

Soma elixir divine appears
fruits jump into my mouth
everyone is cared for
like sticks pilgrims pray
lying prone
praying for the touch of Govinda
of Your red lotus feet
on their reverent forms

So you can embrace
and know us all
even the small grasses
jump into place

humbly awaiting
your foot’s embrace
heaven’s grace
from Your pores
the struggle gone
in your sheltering doors
ecstasy abounds
in chanting dance
oh country village
a magic romance

Vrindavan, India 1974

For all his books please visit www.Gurudas108.com

The Sunday Times London Article

George Harrison fell in Love with Krishna. He said to Gurudas: “I wrote something for Krishna”.

June 30th, 2019

By Nicholas Hellen, Social Affairs Editor

A Hare Krishna devotee was sent from San Francisco to the UK in 1968 with two missions: to set up the movement’s first temple in London – and to meet the Beatles.

It was a seemingly quixotic quest, according to Gurudas, 78, otherwise known as Roger Siegel, who has released pictures from the period that will be published to mark the temple’s 50th anniversary.
With the release of The White Album, the Beatles were at the peak of their fame, and, as Gurudas puts it, “were being submerged by self-proclaimed Messiahs”.

When he and six other devotees attempted to make contact, their gifts, including a wind-up toy apple that played the Hare Krishna mantra, were binned by the band’s gatekeepers.

Their luck changed when the American rock band the Grateful Dead came to meet the Beatles in London and their manager invited one of the devotees, Shyamasundar Das, to accompany them.

George Harrison and John Lennon ~ Photo by Gurudas

However, two members of the Hell’s Angels motorcycle gang were also part of the Californian rockers’ entourage. Gurudas said that as they all waited at the Beatles’ headquarters, the Hell’s Angels threatened to attack all four members of the band they had come to meet.

“Shyamasundar Das is in the corner chanting with his beads. John Lennon looked into the room and, being a smart Liverpudlian street lad, he could feel the vibrations, as we said in the Sixties, and he left. Ringo looked in and saw John had left and Ringo followed John; Paul looked in and also sussed out what was going on and he left. George saw Shyamasundar and made a beeline for him, saying, ‘I’ve been wanting to meet you’. It changed the atmosphere and the Hell’s Angels decided they weren’t going to do it.”

It was the beginning of a curious relationship, which saw Gurudas appearing on Top of the Pops to sing the Hare Krishna mantra, which Harrison produced as a single, and spend six months living in Tittenhurst Park, Lennon’s Georgian mansion in Ascot where he went on to record Imagine.

George Harrison and Shyamasundar Das at the Apple Studios in London
Photo by Gurudas

Harrison, who once resorted to chanting the Hare Krishna mantra in an attempt to distract an intruder who broke into his home and stabbed him in 1999, bought Bhaktivedanta Manor near Watford as a gift for the movement in 1973. Such was the ability of the Beatles to reshape the cultural mainstream that the Hare Krishna mantra single sold 70,000 copies on its first day of release. But there were limits.

Something, the first of Harrison’s compositions to be issued as a Beatles A-side single, is supposed to have been written about Pattie Boyd, his wife at the time.

Gurudas on the far right

However, Gurudas said: “George said to me, ‘I’m falling in love with Krishna and I wrote it for him. But if I wrote “Something in the way he moves”, they would misunderstand.’ “

Meet Gurudas prabhu in Spain this Summer
All about it @ https://www.vediccare.org/retreats-events/
For Gurudas’ signed photos go to www.Gurudas108.com

Welcome to Your Caring Home in Vrindavan

The Vedic Care Holistic Clinic & Assisted Living

Where every soul is special!

For so long, our team members and supporters have dreamed
of a Vedic Care facility in Vrindavan.
Finally, we’re able to announce: Our Model Facility Is Here!

And for your inspiration, please see here who we’re caring for now.
You can also read about our past ‘Success Stories here‘. Thank you!

Our Caring Vision in Images Below

We’ll provide ‘donations based treatments’ while encouraging recurring monthly donations to help those in dire need. So, as we establish ourselves with Love & Trust in Vrindavan, we’ll be offering these further services:

  • ‘Assisted Living Care’ starting with five free beds.
  • Holistic clinic & natural treatments, and healing for those foreign devotees who can afford it, via our donations system.
  • Free Open Holistic Clinic for locals in need (as we’re able).
  • ‘Preventive Medicine’ education for all; with free and paid Seminars.
  • Intensive Courses on ‘Vedic Farming’, ’Hospice Care’, ‘End of Live Care’, ’Shradha Ceremony’ and the ‘Healing Arts’ for all devotees interested; free and donation based.
  • Daily Prasadham distribution (as we become able to do so).
Our beautiful building

Our first line of business is to carry out minor renovations
and repairs to prepare our new facility.

These ‘Start Up’ funds are needed to:
* Achieve certain refurbishments and upgrades to the building.
* Pay the staff in full (for the first two months) so no last minute volunteering issues occur.
* Maintain full building operations, offering ‘Assisted Living Care’ (two months) with five beds for devotees in need.

Total needed for our Vrindavan Holistic Clinic Start Up. We’ll be updating all donors via email.

Please note that this ‘Start Up’ amount is for the preparation of the building and two months minimum cost for the care of five devotees needing ‘Assisted Living’. We will grow from there as we’re able.

Below is a Video of the building today and the detailed budget of what is needed and where.

We’re happy to share our VCC-Vrindavan ‘Start Up Detailed Budget‘ upon request. A PDF version of our campaign also available here.
Furthermore, the monthly minimum required to offer five beds to devotees who cannot afford any care in ‘Assisted Living’ or ‘End of Life Care’ is $ 5,005.

As we accept more ’causes’ that cannot afford care, the rough estimate per additional cause, counting their medical supplies, consultations, paid care takers, registered nurse services and all meals, is INR 60000 (USD $872.07) monthly.


Consider ticking the ‘make this a monthly donation’ box, as the costs of care for those in need will be on-going, once our facility is open.

To be updated on our activities, please sign up for our Monthly Newsletter here.

We have the will, the skills and the support of many volunteers.
Now, with your involvement and blessings, we’ll soon be able
to serve many more in need.

To serve with us at our Vedic Care Vrindavan Model Facility, or donate for these much needed renovations and repairs, please Volunteer, Contact Us, or Donate.

Gurudas prabhu recording Srila Prabhupada in India

As this is the Vedic Care Model Facility, we’ll be encouraging, training, and supporting all kinds of devotees who wish to start their own Vedic Care Facility.

This facility is dedicated to the memory of Govindji Mulji prabhu.

Seeing past bodily designations

By Gurudas

All Glories to the Assembled Devotees!

Here is a glorification of all the devotees who have embarked on the path of Krishna consciousness.

Gurudas, garlanded on the left

My heart goes out to all devotees — you who have become tenderhearted by hearing ancient, transcendental sounds, and by accepting Sri Sri Radha Krishna’s benediction and effulgence.

We can be compassionate towards one another because we are on the same journey, we have the same goal — to become Krishna conscious.

Prabhupada has been our example, guide, inspiration, beacon, and forgiving father. He has left us instructions in his books. If Prabhupada can forgive us, we can also forgive each other’s mistakes and meanderings.

Lord Chaitanya welcomes everyone and sees past any bodily designations. I respect any devotee who has tried in even the smallest way to serve Prabhupada, Krishna, or another devotee. He or she is special — like the sparrow who drank drops of the ocean to rescue her lost eggs from the sea, or like the chipmunk who was tossing pebbles into the sea to help Lord Ramachandra build his bridge to Lanka. The effort itself is success.

I offer my well-wishes to anyone who gets up shivering before sunrise, and, still shivering, takes a cold shower. I offer my well-wishes to those who chant at least 25,000 names of the Lord each day, who consider all others prabhu, who are humble in their practices, who live simply and think of higher goals, and who overcome the tendency for judgmental thinking.

I offer my well-wishes to those who renounce material comforts and are more inspired by the sound of karatals, by the sight of pink lotus feet — to those who are struggling to overcome the unending, albeit temporary, attractions of material nature.

I offer my well-wishes to those who are eager to hear the nectar of divine pastimes and to serve humanity as brothers and sisters, for again, we are all on the same journey. Let us walk together.

Srila Prabhupada and Gurudas on a USA TV Show

Srila Prabhupada has attracted a fine, diverse, international group of people, and the network between us still continues. There are so many personal connections, all due to Prabhupada. If he hadn’t come here, we may never have met. He changed each and every life he touched. It is his wish for us to be friendly, to cooperate, and help each other in Krishna consciousness.

Devotees are rare, and we must encourage one another rather than criticize and turn others away from the delicate devotional path.

Prabhupada said someone who finds fault is like “a fly on sores,” while someone who sees good, who sees the soul within, is like “a honeybee (madhukara) going from flower to flower, transforming everything it touches into pure sweetness.”

Gurudas visiting Agnidev in Australia

Allowing someone to grow, as Prabhupada did for me, is better than faultfinding, which creates resentment and rebellion. Since we are a small family, divisive behavior is counterproductive. There are so few Vaishnavas. We must unite, because we have the same goal — love of Krishna.

Gurudas has served the community for over 50 years now. In the summer of 2015 he founded the Vedic Care Charitable Trust ~ An international members and volunteer supported organization, working to facilitate retirement homes and holistic clinics for spiritual seekers in need. The VCC also acts as a support mechanism for like minded souls working on their own care initiatives, possibly in isolation.

All about it @ www.vediccare.org

Join us to counteract the perils of illusion and material nescience

By Gurudas

Dear ‘Vedic Care’ volunteers, well-wishers and newcomers,

‘The Hidden Persuaders’ by Vance Packard (1957), is a book that exposes the insidious tactics of the advertising industry and how they’re used to influence political decisions and to get people to buy products in a consumer society; how advertisers use psychological methods to tap into our unconscious desires in order to “persuade” us to buy the products they’re selling.

“A brisk, authoritative and frightening report on how manufacturers, fundraisers and politicians are attempting to turn the American mind into a kind of catatonic dough that will buy, give or vote at their command” — The New Yorker.

The book reveals how “motivational research,” works, or the psychological technique that advertisers use to probe our minds in order to control our actions as consumers. Through analysis of products, political campaigns and television programs of the 1950s, Packard shows how these insidious manipulation practices, that have come to dominate today’s corporate driven world, began.

In another book, ‘The Waste Makers,’ Mr. Packard exposes planned obsolescence, which is the manufacturing of products to slowly break.
In other words, the products are designed to eventually malfunction, so the consumer has to buy more and more.

The changing of styles is also planned. Get the “latest” model of such and such. It may not be better, but people are induced to purchase the latest refrigerator, television or car.

This is an indication of what was predicted in the ‘Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam’ as one of the attributes of Kali Yuga. Misinformation and lying become rampant to fool people into doing what is against their nature.

Politicians and dictators have studied and implemented these tactics of “motivation research” and “planned obsolescence.”

Srimad-Bhagavatam, an epic philosophical and literary classic.
This ancient text touches upon all fields of human knowledge. Translated by
His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada.

In wars, radio and television stations were taken over and announced falsely that troops have retreated to undermine the enemy. It worked. Life, products and ideas become shoddy and watered down.

The difference between spiritual ideas and practices are that they are eternal in nature and made to last, whilst the temporary nature is “planned obsolescence,” designed to break, and not lasting.

Krishna has given us the positive alternative for counteracting material nescience, and the means to make our own life and practices sublime, and lasting. The ends and the means are the same in spiritual life.


We at ‘The Vedic Care Charitable Trust’ are dedicated to make things pure, and lasting. Please join with us to counteract the perils of illusion and material nescience.



Ayurvedic Food Combining

For many, the concept of food combining—the idea that some foods digest well together while others do not—is entirely new, and somewhat foreign. But according to Ayurveda, it is an essential part of understanding how to eat properly, just as discovering one’s constitution and state of imbalance is important for one’s Ayurvedic self-discovery. Careful food combining can dramatically improve the quality of digestion, support the body in receiving a deeper level of nourishment, and positively impact our overall health.

However, most people in the modern world are accustomed to eating a number of foods that do not usually digest well together (like fruit with nuts, or beans with cheese). So why does it matter? The Ayurvedic perspective is that each food has a distinct combination of tastes and energies—and a corresponding effect on both the digestive system and on the body as a whole. Combining foods with radically different energetics can overwhelm the digestive fire (agni) and can cause indigestion, fermentation, gas, bloating, and the creation of toxins.1 This is why proper food combining is so important. Of course, certain combinations disturb the digestive tract more than others—an important consideration if this practice is entirely new to you. Regardless of your particular habits or symptoms, paying attention to how you combine foods can provide a valuable opportunity for insight, healing, and improved health. Remember, food combining is not about imposing black and white rules. It is one among many powerful Ayurvedic tools for improving digestive health and overall wellness.

A Balanced Approach to Food Combining

It is usually best to embrace the idea of food combining slowly and gently, allowing plenty of time to make the necessary adaptations. Some of the recommended adjustments are relatively simple; others can require a major recalibration in our habits, or be met with resistance. Often, simply developing an awareness of the improper food combinations that you eat somewhat regularly is a great place to start. Notice which foods you combine that may be difficult to digest together, and how often you indulge in them. Become aware of how you feel afterward. Do these choices affect your energy level, your digestion, your elimination, the coating on your tongue? Are particular combinations more noticeably influential than others? These are all important pieces of information. They can confirm the importance of proper food combining and can help each of us to identify the food combinations that are the most disruptive to our systems.

When you are feeling motivated and decide that you are ready to start adapting your diet to accommodate more supportive food combinations, consider tackling just one change at a time. Perhaps you’ll start by eating fruits alone, rather than in combination with other foods. Over time, you can gradually progress toward the ideal. While it would certainly be nice to avoid improper food combinations altogether, reducing their frequency can also be incredibly beneficial. If you do find that some specific food combinations are more problematic for you or your loved ones than others, focus your efforts on changing just those in the beginning. The most important first step is to become aware of your needs and your habits; from there, you can evolve an approach to food combining that works for you.

Combinations to Reduce or Avoid

The following list highlights incompatible foods and offers suggestions for more appropriate combinations. It is meant to be a helpful guide, not an exhaustive list. In fact, you may be aware of other combinations that do not work for your body. Honor those instincts. Because this resource is meant to help you determine optimal combinations at a glance, there is some repetition. Combinations listed in all caps are particularly challenging.

Compatible and Incompatible Foods: A List

Yes, some of these are staple combinations in many households. Pizza and a number of other beloved Italian dishes combine nightshades with cheese. And who among us hasn’t enjoyed beans with cheese at some time or another? Then there’s the fruit and yogurt taboo… So much for about 80% of all available store-bought varieties of yogurt; next time you indulge in a fruit-flavored yogurt, pay attention to how your digestion feels afterwards.In addition, there are some specific preparations that are challenging when combined with particular foods.

Supportive Food Combinations in Ayurveda
All of these rules can feel overwhelming, even irritatingly complicated. But, the rationale behind proper food combining really does make sense. Ultimately, combining mismatched foods generates ama , a toxic substance that is often at the root of imbalance and disease.2 But, for those of you who would like to understand a little more about HOW and WHY these food combinations tax our bodies, here are a few specific examples:

Bananas and Milk

Though commonly eaten together, bananas and milk are challenging to digest together because their qualities are so different. Bananas are heating while milk is cooling. That alone is problematic. Further, bananas become sour as they break down. So now our digestive fire has to process a sour substance and milk at the same time. Ever added a squeeze of lemon to milk? Or maybe you’ve poured a little milk into a tangy, fruity tea… only to watch it curdle instantly? What happens to these mismatched foods in the digestive tract is not much different. When bananas and milk are eaten together, their opposing qualities tend to smother the digestive fire and can disrupt the balance of intestinal flora, which results in the creation of toxins. This combination also frequently causes congestion, colds, coughs, allergies, hives, and rashes.2 A similar situation arises when we combine any sour fruit with milk.3

Eating Fruits Alone

The reason fruits are best enjoyed on their own is that fruit is usually somewhat acidic, fairly simple to digest, and often digests quite quickly. When fruits are eaten with other foods, there is usually a significant discrepancy between the amount of time required to properly digest the fruit versus the more complex food. Inhibited by the more complex food, the fruit tends to move through the digestive tract too slowly and can cause fermentation, gas, and bloating. In addition, the combination typically introduces a number of conflicting qualities into the digestive tract all at once, which has the potential to overwhelm or stifle the digestive fire.

Nightshades and Cheese

This combination is simply too taxing for the digestive fire. A nightshade is a common name for a member of the plant family Solanaceae, which includes potatoes, bell peppers, tomatoes, eggplants, cayenne peppers, paprika, tobacco, henbane, belladonna, datura, and over 2,500 other plants. Nightshades contain alkaloids, primarily as a means of defense against being damaged by insects. The alkaloids can be anywhere from mildly to fatally toxic to humans. As a result, diverse cultures around the world have long held an intriguing relationship with the nightshade family. Some have been used to make poisons, some contain incredibly addictive compounds such as nicotine, some are mind altering, and others create an incredible sensation of heat in the mouth.4 The bottom line is that nightshades contain a complex array of compounds that, once ingested, lead to a potentially dramatic cascade of chemical reactions in the body. Ayurvedically speaking, all nightshades are believed to be somewhat difficult to digest and to have the capacity to disturb the doshas. When we mix these inherently challenging nightshades with cheese—which is heavy, oily, and also difficult to digest—we can quickly overtax the digestive fire.

Beans and Cheese

Beans and cheese are similar in that they both tend to be heavy and are often difficult to digest. In order to break down properly, they both require a good deal of digestive strength. But, the similarities end there. Beans tend to taste mostly astringent and sweet, can be either heating or cooling (depending on the type of bean), and usually have a pungent post-digestive effect. Cheese, on the other hand, tastes predominantly sour, is almost always heating, and usually has a sour post-digestive effect. The post-digestive effect of different foods occurs once that food has moved into the colon; it affects the urine, feces, sweat and tissues—sometimes even at the cellular level. Two foods with distinct post-digestive effects are typically quite different from one another. This is the case with beans and cheese; when they are eaten together, they tend to overwhelm and confuse the digestive fire. Meanwhile, their combined heaviness makes them even more difficult to process, often resulting in poor digestion and the accumulation of ama.

Ease Into It

Embracing the wisdom of food combining slowly helps us to cultivate a refined awareness around how our dietary choices affect us. This heightened sensitivity can be an invaluable asset, regardless of how quickly we are able to replace improper food combinations with more supportive ones. Be gentle with yourself, progressing at a pace that works for you. You might find it helpful, on occasion, to take a moment to reflect on how your digestion and your overall sense of wellness have changed over time. Proper food combining tends to awaken the body’s innate intelligence, so for most, embracing good food combining habits gets easier with time and practice.

Much of the information contained in this article came from Dr. Vasant and Usha Lad’s cookbook: Ayurvedic Cooking for Self-Healing. Our deepest gratitude to them both for sharing an enlightened understanding of how to eat Ayurvedically.

An Ayurvedic Approach to Losing Weight

The Importance of Healthy Digestion
The concept of agni, the Sanskrit word for “fire,” is rather essential to the Ayurvedic tradition. Ayurveda views agni as the very source of life. It is said that a man is as old as his agni and that when agni is extinguished, we die. Perhaps even more significantly, Ayurveda teaches us that impaired agni is at the root of every imbalance and disease. So the importance of agni in Ayurveda simply cannot be understated.

Thank you ~ Banyan Botanicals

Please come learn more with us at our Vedic Care Retreats.
Next one this Summer!

Kirtan & Healing Retreat with Gurudas
August 1 – 4, 2019 near Madrid, Spain

Gurudas in Spain ~ 2019

Kirtan & Healing Retreat with Gurudas
August 1 – 4, 2019 near Madrid, Spain


Four days and three nights at a historical finca near Brihuega, in Central Spain with Gurudas, one of A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada’s earliest disciples.

Gurudas will be sharing a wealth of experience, past-times and his personal seminar, ‘We Are The Healers’.

The location is a beautiful Spanish farm with classic architecture about 100 kilometers east of Madrid, Spain’s capital city.

There’s a small farm community with flower and vegetable gardens, a beautiful goshala – place to care for cows – right across the road from the farm’s central focus, a beautiful temple.

There are approximately twelve cows and two bulls that are pampered, so milk is abundant. The farm is about 300 hectares in size with many hills, so wonderful nature walks are also available.

The Retreat offers: Vegetarian and Vegan Organic Meals, Daily Nature Hikes through Beautiful Country, Bhakti Yoga Classes, Srila Prabhupada Katha, ‘We’re the Healers’, Guided Meditation and Kirtan (Spiritual Music Sessions).


Gurudas, the 7th initiated disciple of HDG Srila Prabhupada. See him in the ‘New York Times’ here. He’s also the ‘Vedic Care’ Founder, an Author, Photographer and Counselor. Check out the Vedic Care’s ‘Back to Godhead’ article here.

The program is being assisted by Aradhana Devi Dasi ~ Bhakti Yogini, Film Actor & Producer and Co-Founder of The Vedic Care Charitable Trust.


Packages include: accommodation, breakfast, lunch and a light dinner, kirtans, Guruda’s seminars and Srila Prabhupada katha talks.

Not included: Flights, Professional personal consultations with Gurudas (minimum donation of €20), pickup/drop-off at the Madrid International Airport with our transport (upon request).

For seminars only and special packages Contact Us.

All about in English here and in Spanish here.

Devastating Fire ~ Devotee suffers loss

By Devaki Devi Dasi

A disciple of Srila Prabhupada is in need in Alachua ~ Florida

Jambuvati Devi Dasi (Nadia Miles) was initiated in 1967. She lives in Alachua, Florida. She was renting this apartment cottage dwelling out back of her place to another Srila Prabhupada disciple who was helping her fix it up the rest of the way… and living there also at the same time so she could get it to the point where insurance would approve to cover it.

She was just getting it to that point when he went on a japa walk and came back to see the place he was renting from her engulfed in flames. Complete loss. Burned to the ground and no insurance. There was some kind of problem with the electric. Jambuvati has a tiny fixed income and this unit was her income much needed to pay the bills monthly. Devastating loss for her.

We know her personally in Alachua for a long time and she has a humble dwelling and a real need right now to rebuild her life and get back on her feet so she can maintain her self once again. It will probably take more than $15,000 to rebuild.

Jambuvati Devi Dasi

In her words:

“My dear friends; I had a beautiful cottage on my property that was burned to the ground due to an electrical situation. My place was started 18 years ago and finally finished ready for inspection… and then suddenly flames coming out of the windows and doors! Firefighters could not save any of it not even the structure! It was originally built for my kids when they need a place. It was finally near inspection. It was a source of income. I know I cannot build another with donations, but I am hoping to be able to build an addition of a bedroom and kitchen into my existing mobile home. Any donations would be greatly appreciated and helpful for any amount. I thank you for your love and support.”

Please give to Jambuvati so she can regain her life as far as this goes. Just click on the donation button below. Thank you!

The Vedic Care is assisting the fundraising. Anyone can donate. In the USA, PayPal’s transaction fees are smaller then other funding platforms, primarily because we’re a 501(c)3 Charity. Also, International donations arrive immediately, and at low cost. Thank you.