Search:  
 
BIOGRAPHY
Home l Lectures l Books l MP3 CD's l DVD's l Festivals l Biography l Contact the Swami l Links
About Srila Prabhupada
Srila Prabhupada is the spiritual master of Giriraj Swami and the Founder Acharya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness or ISKCON. MORE...
New Releases
Srila Prabhupada:
A Lifetime in Preparation

A biographical film on the life of A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, a spiritual teacher from Bengal who at the age of seventy traveled to America and started the worldwide Hare Krishna movement. MORE...

 

 

 

 

 

 


Giriraj Swami

Giriraj Swami with Srila Prabhupada in 1971.

Giriraj Swami was born Glenn Phillip Teton in the home of a respected Chicago lawyer. He met His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, founder-acarya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness, in March of 1969, while studying at Brandeis University in Boston, and considered that he learned more from Srila Prabhupada in five minutes than he had learned in his twenty years of academic education. After graduating from Brandeis cum laude, Glenn took formal initiation from Srila Prabhupada and was given the spiritual name “Giriraj Das.” Giriraj quickly became a leading member of the Boston center and then was given the opportunity to go to India with Srila Prabhupada, to help him establish his mission there.

In 1972, after Giriraj had toured India with Srila Prabhupada, Prabhupada appointed him President of ISKCON Bombay as well as a trustee of the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust. Since then, he has made many significant contributions to Srila Prabhupada’s movement, most notably overseeing all aspects of the development of Hare Krishna Land in Juhu, Bombay. He was instrumental in the development of the Bhaktivedanta Ashram in Govardhana and has led the development of the Kirtan Ashram for renounced women, the Bhaktivedanta Hospice, and the Vrindavan Institute of Palliative Care, all in Vrndavana, India. Through all his efforts, Giriraj has become renowned for the austerities he has accepted and for his loyalty and dedication to Srila Prabhupada’s mission, as well as for his ability to raise funds and cultivate important members of society.


Giriraj Swami in the Bombay temple.

Giriraj Swami writing in California.

After Srila Prabhupada’s departure in 1977, Giriraj was awarded the renounced order of life and appointed president of ISKCON’s board of trustees in India. In 1982 he was made a member of the ISKCON’s Governing Body Commission, the ultimate managing authority for the movement, and went on to oversee the Society’s activities in Bombay, Mauritius, South Africa, Spain, Portugal, Sri Lanka, and Pakistan.

Giriraj Swami has toured extensively throughout India and many other countries, carrying knowledge of Krsna and helping to develop Srila Prabhupada’s mission. He has also taught at the Vaisnava Institute for Higher Education in Vrindavana and now gives presentations at japa retreats and workshops for the Bhagavat Life educational foundation. Although health considerations have recently limited his traveling, Giriraj Swami has taken this as an opportunity to focus on one of Srila Prabhupada’s personal instructions: to write. Now based in Southern California, he is the author of Watering the Seed (Mountain King Books, 2000) and a frequent contributor to Back to Godhead magazine, and is working on several publications, including books about his search for a spiritual master and his early days in the Boston temple, his travels with Srila Prabhupada in India from 1970 to 1972, and Srila Prabhupada’s monumental efforts in Bombay.