A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Born in 1896 in Calcutta, India (as Abhay Charan De),
founder of the Hare Krishna movement, or ISKCON. He first met his spiritual
master, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Gosvami, in Calcultta in 1922.
Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati, a prominent religious scholar and the founder
of sixty-four Gaudiya Mathas (Vedic Institutes) in India, liked this
educated young man and convinced him to dedicate his life to teaching
Prabhupada became Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati's student and, in 1933,
his formally initiated disciple, taking the name Abhaya Charanaravinda dasa. Prabhupada finally came to New York
in September 1965 after translating, and providing commentary to the Bhagavad Gita and
the first three volumes of the Srimad Bhagavatam, and establishing the
Back to Godhead magazine in India.
Upon his death on November 14, 1977 he had written over 70 volumes of
authoritative annotated translations and summary studies of the
philosophical and religious classics of India, including
his life's masterpice, a multi-volume commentated translation of the
18,000-versed Srimad-Bhagavatam (Bhagavata Purana), begun at Radha-Damodara, in India.
Spreading the message of bhakti or devotion to God over the short
space of twelve years, he had also guided the Society and seen it grow to a worldwide confederation of more
than one hundred ashramas, schools, temples, institutes, and farm communities.
Actually the word Prabhupada is just a title, a Sanskrit reverential address
for a spiritual master(*), much like the terms Gurudeva or
(*) Quick etymology: prabhupada < prabhurera-pada (prabhu lords + -pada feet) - "personage at whose feet the other Lords sit".