VRT Activities and Research
1. The work of VRT can be divided into two types:
a) VRT Activity
b) VRT Research Work
2. VRT activities are coordinated independently by VRT Group Leaders. VRT research work is coordinated by VRT Core with the help of a VRT Group Leader.
3. Following are few of the activities that can be performed by VRT members for helping in the Varnasrama mission.
- Awareness – Weekly meetings by members to educate themselves and share on varnasrama topics.
- Awareness – Devising methods/campaigns for creating awareness for stopping cow killing.
- Awareness – Training up oneself as per one’s Varna and ashrama.
- Awareness – Setting up Varnasrama stalls for distribution of books, pamphlets, DVDs etc.
- Awareness – Setting up Cow products stall in Temple/centers. Promote use of such products.
- Awareness – Conducting seminars, talk shows, road shows for spreading awareness of on topics of Varnasrama.
- Getting Involved – Village or Farm camps, Visits to Goshala, Feeding cows.
- Getting Involved – Organize Terrace(Roof top) garden/farming.
- Getting Involved – Setting up Govinda’s or Prasadam stall.
- Getting Involved – Organizing Yoga or conventional health care camps.
- Getting Involved – Organizing Martial Arts camps or courses.
- Getting Involved – Enroll and lend support and assistance to other IDVM departments.
- Getting Involved – Organizing/helping temple and congregation to purchase from farm.
- Getting Involved – Supporting new VRT formations at different places to involve more people in this Varnasrama mission.
- Getting Involved – Organize Varnasrama festivals or Varnasrama fairs.
- Networking – Search out and collect data of other NGOs, religious groups, scientific or cultural group that are working on the lines of Varnasrama.
- Networking – Build relation and team up with them for campaign etc.
- Revive Traditions – Preparing for living a simple life in future by purchasing village land, giving up unwanted comforts etc.
- Revive Traditions – Purchase village lands with the aim to move to simple life in villages in future.
- Revive Traditions – Understanding and taking up varnasrama lifestyle, etiquette, dress etc.
- Revive Traditions – Helping Varnasrama Farms purchase and setup village technology.
4. The following are a few of the research services that can be taken up by VRT members for helping in the Varnasrama mission.
- Study and Research – Gathering information on the various lists of topics available for research.
- Study and Research – Attending seminars conducted by other agencies on various topics related with varnasrama.
- Study and Research – Conducting seminars to educate and train on various topics related to varnasrama.
- Study and Research – Enrolling for and conducting e-courses.
- Sharing – Writing articles on varnasrama and Krishna conscious topics in local newspapers or magazines.
- Sharing – Compiling materials such as presentations, pamphlets, brochures, newsletters, flyers etc for sharing the knowledge.
- Sharing – Help in building up online research repository by giving articles, reviews, suggestions, comments, proofreading, etc.
5. VRT will be utilizing two websites.
- For details and news of VRT activities, www.iskconvarnasrama.com website is proposed to be used
- For publishing and maintaining online repository www.global-varnasrama-college.com website is proposed
Responsibility of – Director/Facilitator for VRT
- To help establish local VRT groups in different towns and cities.
- To interact with, provide training and help various VRT Group leaders.
- To keep in close liaison with the IDVM Secretariat in Mayapur and with other National Departments closely connected with some of the VRT activities.
- To cooperate with other departments for their needed research work.
- To set up and maintain, a national office where various services relating to the National Department of Varnasrama Research Team will be offered to devotees and to the public at large.
- To network and interphase with existing VRT groups in India that are following or desiring to follow the aims and objectives of the Global Varnasrama Mission.
- To network and interphase with existing VRT Directors/Facilitators or VRT groups in other countries that are following or desiring to follow the aims and objectives of the Global Varnasrama Mission.
- To keep abreast of on-going developments and interests in matters relating to the four varnas (such as traditional education, principles of governance, organic agriculture and cow protection, village technologies) and all matters relating to the principles of self-sufficiency, sustainability, localized living and the like.
- To maintain records and reports of VRT groups in India that are registered with the Ministry.
- To report to the National Minister and IDVM-IC about the VRT activities.
- To collect data and prepare Bi-Monthly and Annual report of VRT activities. To submit the same timely to the IDVM Secretariat.
- To prepare proposals to be submitted by the IDVM-India to the ISKCON Bureau.
- To keep in regular communication with the Minister of IDVM-India.
- To take active part as a member of IDVM-India National Council.
Responsibility of – VRT Core
- To lead research on various topics.
- To keep updated and provide guidance in matter of research activities being performed by teams or individuals.
- To assimilate, review, edit and help build up a repository of knowledge from various researches being done.
- To provide directions to various varnasrama research works being performed.
- To generate regular research material for publishing to various newspapers, magazine, BTG, websites etc.
- To advice the director/facilitator of VRT for better working, coordination and expansion of VRTs.
Responsibility of – VRT Group Leader
- To preach and involve more individuals interested in Varnasrama Mission to take up various VRT activities.
- To organize regular meetings to inspire and coordinate with VRT group members
- To keep in close liaison with the IDVM Secretariat in Mayapur and with other national departments closely connected with some of the VRT activities.
- To work closely with various ISKCON entities to promote the varnasrama mission.
- To build relation with other secular educational, scientific, social, religious and cultural institutions that may have similar goals and objectives.
- To help Core Team coordinate research activities being done by group members.
- To help group members systematically compile and share the research work done by them.
- To set up and maintain, a local office where various services relating to the VRT will be offered to devotees and to the public at large.
- To build a small Library and keep books dealing with Varnasrama Mission.
- To prepare Bi – Monthly Report of his team activities and submit the same to VRT Director/Facilitator.
- To keep in regular communication with the National VRT Director/Facilitator through mails, meetings etc.
Responsibility of – VRT Group Members
- To educate self on the importance of establishing Srila Prabhupada’s varnasrama mission.
- To take up various VRT activities or VRT research work as per their inclination and qualities.
- To compile and document activity reports or researched information.
- To regularly attend and help VRT group leader in various meeting and seminars.
Responsibility of – VRT Webmaster
Ideally this task can be taken up by the group set up by Communications Department (IV Web Group). However if the need arises there can be separate webmaster for VRT.
- To create and maintain the required software for online repository site.
- To train and help VRT Core and Group leaders in submission/update of research materials.
- To update and change materials where the member is not able to do.
- To regularly backup both the software and the data.
Co-operation of VRT and other National Departments
It is important to understand that VRT is especially meant to serve as a general support to all the IDVM National departments. VRT work is very broad and overlaps with practically all the major departments but it is not meant to do their work. National Departments specialize in their work.
A VRT member, who having received initial knowledge and training in Varnasrama, may naturally become more interested in a particular service. He could then want to enroll into a National Department providing that service and become part of that particular Department while still being part of the local group. While National Departments recruit directly, they may also recruit from VRT groups. However a VRT member may also opt to do more research or just research on that subject before/without committing to service of any other department. He will have the freedom to do so.
It is also foreseen that an active member of a particular National Department may also start or join a VRT Local Group. While directly preaching from some particular National Department he may want to preach further and train and lend additional support utilizing the facility of VRT.
Research is the need of most of the National Departments. Persons leading research in a particular department or particular subject may (or may not) become part of VRT Core. Any member may who wants to do further research (or just research) on a particular subject may directly approach that department or approach VRT group leader or VRT Core for help and guidance. The Varnasrama Research Team is here to help in facilitating the process of learning, involving, researching, and sharing.
Co-operation between VRTs
The main task of VRT Director/facilitator would be to provide training and assistance to new group leaders so that they become independently thoughtful and competent. The VRT group leaders are meant to work independently devising new ways for spreading the Varnasrama mission and engaging more and more people. It is their responsibility to see that their group members are engaged properly in Krishna consciousness, in line with the instructions given by Srila Prabhupada and also that they are trained up properly to become future leaders.
The next important task of VRT director/facilitator is to help in the sharing process. It helps a lot in sharing and inspiring each other, generating a little healthy competition and challenge. Hence VRT groups are meant to visiting, sharing, serving and helping each other, thus building a good relation which is the key to Varnasrama society.