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Krishna Devotees Repeat Sacred Vedic Vows

This article "PARENTS ATTEND WEDDING: Krishna Devotees Repeat Sacred Vedic Vows," was published in Tucson Daily Citizen, October 26, 1971, in Tucson, Arizona.  

Citizen Staff Writer

Leelashakti dasi and Madhucara dasa were married Sunday afternoon in a scared Vedic marriage ceremony at the Sri Sri Radha-Krsna Temple, 132N, Santa Rita Ave.

Sukadeva das, president of the Phoenix temple, married the couple in Krishna (Krsna) Consciousness according to the teachings of the founder of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness, A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada of India.

Known as the "Spiritual Master" to the Krishna devotees, the Indian religious leader has written a commentary for the Bhagavad-Gita, an ancient Sanskrit document of Vedanta philosophy, as a guide for followers of the Hare Krishna movement.

The bride's parents, Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Forkash of Santa Barbara attended their daughter's wedding.

The couple, formerly known as Linda Forkash, 23, and Michael J. Rooney, 24, will continue to live at the Tucson temple. Madhucara dasa is president of the temple.

Leelashakti dasi came to Tucson less than a month ago from the San Diego temple to meet her husband-to-be at the suggestion of their spiritual adviser in Los Angeles.

The marriage was arranged by him for the couple.

The reason Krishna devotees marry, Leelashakti dasi explains, is "to help each other advance in developing love for God."

Children born to married devotees are considered a blessing, she says.

"It is a good service to God to raise children to love Him."

Sexual activity is limited to attempts at propagation. If the couple does not wish to have children, they continue to live as celibates - as they did before their marriage.

Krishna devotees believe it is everyone's role to serve God, but that a married woman serves God best by serving her husband; giving him the strength and courage to increase his love for God.

By serving her husband, the woman advances as well, Leelashakti explains.

Both Leelashakti dasi and Madhucara dasa believe each other will be compatible spouses truly devoted to serving God.

"He is serious and sincere, and sincerity is one of the most important qualities," she says. "Our main business is becoming Krishna conscious."

Madhucara dasa says his wife is "very sincere" and she has a strong will "to overcome the onslaught of material desire."

"I wanted a partner sincerely interested in serving God," he said.

"We are living transcendentally for the realization of the ultimate truth and to help each other advance spiritually. We don't live selfishly for the benefit of the immediate family members. We are all one family."

"What we would like to do (as a married couple) is set an example of what a pure marriage is."

Photo 1: Chanting The Mantra - The wedding couple, Leelashakti dasi and Madhucara dasa, chants a holy mantra (prayer) as they don garlands of fresh flowers during their marriage ceremony Sunday at the Sri Sri Radha-Krsna Temple, 132 W. Santa Rita Ave. The couple is joined in prayer by other Krishna Consciousness devotees. Their faces are painted with "kum kum" power.
Photo 2: Preparing Sacrifice - The newly wedded couple (center) holds a bowl (wak) of barley, sesame seeds and clarified butter to be offered to Krishna (God) in a scared fire sacrifice. The bride's parents, Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Forkash of Santa Barbara, Calif. (left), join in the solemn ceremony.

Reference: Tucson Daily Citizen, Unknown Location, USA, 1971-10-26