Srila Prabhupada, His Movement and You

If one remains always a servant everlastingly of guru, then he is liberated. And as soon as he thinks that he is liberated, he’s a rascal. That is the teaching of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu…. You must be ready always to be chastised by guru. Then he’s liberated. And as soon as he thinks that “I am beyond this chastisement, I am liberated,” he’s a rascal…. Why this Gaudiya Math failed? Because they tried to become more than guru. He [Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura], before passing away, he gave them all direction and never said that “This man should be the next acharya .” But these people, just after his passing away, they began to fight, who shall be acharya . That is the failure. They never thought, “Why Guru Maharaja gave us instruction so many things, why he did not say that this man should be acharya? ” They wanted to create artificially somebody acharya, and everything failed. They did not consider even with common sense that if Guru Maharaja wanted to appoint somebody as acharya, why did he not say? He said so many things, and this point he missed? The real point? And they insist upon it. They declared some unfit person to become acharya . Then another man came, then another, acharya, another acharya . So better remain a foolish person perpetually to be directed by Guru Maharaja. That is perfection. –Srila Prabhupada, August 16, 1976, Bombay ( Conversations with Srila Prabhupada, Vol. 26, p. 59-60)

Guru Parampara
By Sriman Hansadutta Prabhu

These are some last minute thoughts in continuing the first edition of Srila Prabhupada, His Movement and You.

During Tamal’s conversation at Topanga Canyon, Tamal Krishna Goswami admitted that “you cannot show me anywhere where Srila Prabhupada appointed gurus. He only appointed rittviks…. This appointment is a myth….”

Certainly Prabhupada made gurus! But seeing their immaturity, he qualified them as rittvik representatives of the Acharya. One certainly must have a guru, but to understand the calibre of one’s guru, the standard for judgment of measure is there in the person of the Acharya, Srila Prabhupada. Otherwise, why did Prabhupada say, “Ramanuja Acharya is there, Madhva Acharya is there, and their commentaries are there. You follow the Acharya; don’t follow any rascal”

More

Srila Prabhupada, His Movement and You


Devotees keep asking themselves, “How will the Krishna consciousness movement spread under the present circumstances?”

They observe the lame leadership and feel personally helpless to make any change or contribution toward rectifying the situation or themselves. The answer to this debilitating state of thought is to see one’s self in the correct spiritual perspective. The devotees who helped Prabhupada spread his movement ISKCON are the same ones who can and will spread Krishna consciousness now and in the future. All that is required is that each individual devotee see himself as the servant of Prabhupada, now exactly as he was then (when Prabhupada was present)…

“The temple center is started just to present an example to the neighboring residents, how they can make a small temple in each and every home. It is not necessary that hundreds and thousands of people will live in our temple, but if we can make effective propaganda, then the neighboring residents, householders, will be inclined to be initiated and follow the modes of temple life. So you can encourage the visitors, boys and girls, as well as married couples, to understand the value of life and how they can peacefully and happily live if they follow the routine worship method in the temple and establish this in their home to be happy in all respects.” (Srila Prabhupada, letter to Tamal Krishna, June 1, 1969)

Nam Hatta: The Onus is On You
By Sriman Hansadutta Prabhu

Because of the circumstances under which most of Prabhupada’s early disciples joined the movement, a widespread misunderstanding has become a great obstacle for people in general to accept and practice Krishna consciousness in a realistic and progressive way under all circumstances. That misunderstanding is that a serious candidate for accepting and advancing in Krishna consciousness must abandon his worldly environment and responsibilities to join a temple ashram and live a communal or communistic life style under the rigid authority of an ISKCON GBC or guru. Nothing could be further from the truth, as we can plainly understand from the following descriptions of Lord Chaitanya’s preaching method and Prabhupada’s purports, which clearly support and obviously encourage the process introduced by Lord Chaitanya in His dealing with the Kurma brahmana and everyone He encountered throughout His two years of traveling and preaching in South India.

More

How to be linked up with Srila Prabhupada


How to be linked up with Srila Prabhupada
Posted by Hansadutta das on October 22, 2010

A devotee in Texas wrote in, asking what to do, how to be properly connected with Srila Prabhupada. He is certainly not the only one. There are many devotees like him all over the world, so I hope this helps others who likewise want to understand their situation in relationship to Prabhupada.

Dear Bhakta Ronnie, obeisances, all glories to Srila Prabhupada.

Thank you for your nice letter (letter follows). You have asked, “What exactly is a devotee like me supposed to do? How do I get linked up with Srila Prabhupada?” This is the question that plagues you, right?

Vaikuntanath das, a good friend of mine from NY City in early 1968, was alone with Srila Prabhupada at the Radha Damodar temple in Vrindaban, India. He wanted to ask a question of Prabhupada that had haunted him for a long time. Finally he felt, “This is my chance.” He asked, “Srila Prabhupada, we are distributing millions of books, but in the future when you are not here, how will these people who read your books be INITIATED?” Srila Prabhupada looked at him approvingly and answered, “One who reads my books, he is initiated automatically.”

More

Letter to Hansadutta from Tamal Krishna Goswami, dated 10 July 1977

Letter to Hansadutta from Tamal Krishna Goswami
July 10th, 1977

My Dear Hansadutta Maharaja:

Please accept my humble obeisances at your feet. Srila Prabhupada has received your letters dated July 4th and July 5th, 1977 respectively, and has instructed me to reply them.

Srila Prabhupada was very pleased to hear how you have organized everything in Ceylon, and that so many people are now taking interest seriously is proof of the effectiveness of your preaching. His Divine Grace said, “You are a suitable person and you can give initiation to those who are ready for it. I have selected you among eleven men as “rittvik” or representative of the acharya, to give initiations, both first and second initiation, on my behalf.” A newsletter is being sent to all Temple Presidents and GBC in this regard, listing the eleven representatives selected by His Divine Grace. Those who are initiated are the disciples of Srila Prabhupada, and anyone who you deem fit and initiate in this way, you should send their names to be included in Srila Prabhupada’s “Initiated Disciples” book. In this way the Temple Presidents will send their recommendations for initiation direct to the nearest representative who will give a spiritual name or chant on the Gayatri thread just as Srila Prabhupada has been doing.
Srila Prabhupada smiled very broadly when he heard of the successful program organized by the local people in which 2000 persons attended. When he heard that you have introduced a full feasting program on Sundays, he said, “You are a good cook, so teach others now how to cook just as I taught you.”

Regarding the printing going slowly, His Divine Grace stated, “Never mind. Go surely. It doesn’t matter slowly.” I inquired from Pradyumna Prabhu about the Sinhalese translation which you mentioned. He said that “On Chanting Hare Krishna Mantra” was translated into Sinhalese, and that translation is in his trunk in Bombay. We will try to get it to you as soon as possible. I do not know if Gopal Krishna has any Tamil manuscript, but if he does, when I see him in about ten days, I will tell him to send it to you. You may also write him directly. Pradyumna says it will be faster just to get a new translationÑit is only one page.

Srila Prabhupada was very glad to know that you would try to bring some Ceylonese devotees to Mayapur and said, “Oh, that is very good!” He did not know whether the story about Bhaktisiddhanta’s disciples seeing a man eating a rat was true or not. Regarding the exact position of Sri Lanka, this is the opinion of some people. Srila Prabhupada advised that we not discuss this matter publicly at this time. Prabhupada also recommended that from Hari Sauri you take ghee. He said that you could have one fifth of whatever Hari Sarui sends to India. Regarding whether you should use the name Swami or Goswami, Srila Prabhupada said, “Stick to one. Swami is better.”

Your servant,
Tamal Krishna Goswami
Secretary to Srila Prabhupada

Srila Prabhupada, His Movement and You

Srila Prabhupada, His Movement & You
By Sriman Hansadutta Prabhu

…that although garbage, debris and dead bodies are to be seen floating in the holy Ganges, it is understood that the Ganges never becomes impure or polluted on that account. So ISKCON may also have apparent undesirable and non-spiritual aspects, even demons amongst its members–still ISKCON should be accepted as pure always. As with the Ganges, we simply push the undesirable debris and garbage aside and take our bath, similarly, in ISKCON we may brush aside or avoid the apparent non-spiritual members and their effects and try to dip deep into the instructions of Srila Prabhupada (books, instructions, etc.).

ISKCON is Like the Great Holy River Ganges

Here I would like to humbly suggest a positive alternative for the future development of ISKCON, which necessitates an understanding of what ISKCON is. Everyone says, “ISKCON, ISKCON, ISKCON….” But what is ISKCON?–That is the question.

ISKCON is like the great holy river Ganges. The discrepancies we see there should be considered just like the foam or stool and dead bodies we see occasionally floating in the holy river Ganges. They never contaminate the river Ganges; rather, Ganges can absorb unlimited contamination and sins of unlimited sinful persons, and still it remains pure.

As the mighty Ganges flows down from Vaikuntha and Lord Shiva, through the Himalayan mountains, through the plains of India, ending finally at the Bay of Bengal and apparently enters the salt water ocean, but in fact does not merge into the salt water ocean but goes underwater and descends to other lower planets, returning eventually to Vaikuntha, so similarly, ISKCON flows down from Goloka Vrindavan through the mighty mountain peaks of the great acharyas, through His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada and his disciples who appear to be merged into the mainstream of the human society for preaching Krishna consciousness and who are all destined to go back to Godhead.

No one has any proprietorship over the Ganges. However sinful one may be, no one can throw him out of the Ganges. That would be ridiculous.

If we accept the holy river Ganges as being analogous to the flow of transcendental teachings coming down from the spiritual world to the material world via the disciplic succession (Brahma, Narada, Vyasa, Madhvacharya, Bhaktivinoda Thakur, Bhaktisiddhanta and Srila Prabhupada), then some of the incongruities which we as devotees sometimes experience in ISKCON may be resolved in a realistic way.

More

Srila Prabhupada, His Movement and You

The endless controversy over whether Prabhupada appointed gurus, acharyas or rittvik deputies can be satisfactorily concluded by pointing out that Prabhupada left written instructions. Srila Prabhupada left a last will and testament. He left a BBT document regarding the continued publication of his books. He left a GBC document outlining how the movement is to be managed. And he wrote a letter on July 9, l977, appointing ll senior devotees as rittvik gurus, officiating deputies, to continue the process of initiating new members on behalf of ” the Founder- acarya ” Srila Prabhupada . All the men named in that letter already had been doing these rittvik initiations on Prabhupada’s bellalf for a number of years. Therefore, there was no need for Prabhupada to write an official letter in this regard, save and except to make it clear that these senior disciples should perpetuate the rittvik responsibilities they were already performing in the future, as in the absence of Srila Prabhupada, which at that time was apparently very near at hand.

Letter to all GBC and Temple Presidents
from Srila Prabhupada, dated July 9th, 1977 (see photocopy above):

To All G.B.C. and Temple Presidents
July 9th, 1977

Dear Maharajas and Prabhus:

Please accept my humble obeisances at your feet. Recently, when all of the GBC members were with His Divine Grace in Vrindavana, Srila Prabhupada indicated that soon He would appoint some of His senior disciples to act as “rittvik”-representative of the acharya, for the purpose of performing initiations, both first initiation and second initiation. HisDivine Grace has so far given a list of eleven disciples who will act in that capacity:

His Holiness Kirtanananda Swami
His Holiness Satsvarupa das Goswami
His Holiness Jayapataka Swami
His Holiness Tamal Krishna Goswami
His Holiness Hrdayananda Goswami
His Holiness Bhavananda Goswami
His Holiness Hamsadutta Swami
His Holiness Ramesvara Swami
His Holiness Harikesa Swami
His Grace Bhagavan das Adhikari
His Grace Jayatirtha das Adhikari

In the past Temple Presidents have written to Srila Prabhupada recommending a particular devotee’s initiation. Now that Srila Prabhupada has named these representatives, Temple Presidents may henceforward send recommendation for first and second initiation to whichever of these eleven representatives are nearest their temple. After considering the recommendation, these representatives may accept the devotee as an initiated disciple of Srila Prabhupada by giving a spiritual name, or in the case of second initiation, by chanting on the Gayatri thread, just as Srila Prabhupada has done. The newly initiated devotees are disciples of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, the above eleven senior devotees acting as His representative. After the Temple President receives a letter from these representatives giving the spiritual name or the thread, he can perform the fire yajna in the temple as was being done before. The name of a newly initiated disciple should be sent by the representative who has accepted him or her to Srila Prabhupada, to be included in His Divine Grace’s “Initiated Disciples” book.

Hoping this finds you all well.

Your servant,

Tamal Krishna Goswami
Secretary to Srila Prabhupada

Approved: A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

[ Srila Prabhupada’s signature appears on the original.]

More

Srila Prabhupada, His Movement and You

Srila Prabhupada, His Movement and You
By Sriman Hansadutta Prabhu

The recent proliferation of gurus, both within and without ISKCON, appears to be like the proliferation of ambitious kings who were eventually annihilated by Krishna on the battlefield of Kurukshetra 5,000 years ago.

How to Recognize the Acharya

The pioneer in any field always gets the greatest credit, because it is he only who opens the door to a new world, a new thought, a new horizon-like Columbus, who innocently chanced upon America, the New World, while searching for India. Columbus opened the door for a whole migration of humanity from Europe and all the world to eventually form the New World, or the United States of America, the most powerful nation on Earth.

So everyone after Columbus, however great he may be, owes his regards to Columbus for opening the door to the New World, and Columbus is never obliged to any late-comers or new-comers. Like Columbus, Prabhupada set out from India and opened the door to the spiritual world for the whole world, and every transcendentalist thereafter is obliged to Prabhupada. Prabhupada is never obliged to those coming after him, however great they may appear as individuals. Neither is he obliged to his contemporaries. That is the unique position of Prabhupada as the acharya of the entire Gaudiya Vaishnava Sampradaya.

With this view in mind, everyone should see their way clear for uniting harmoniously under the lotus feet of Srila Prabhupada, the acharya of the Gaudiya Vaishnava Sampradaya, for preaching the great mission of Krishna consciousness all over the world as Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura and Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati envisioned it. Any individual or group obstinately remaining stuck up in their petty, egocentric conception of preaching Krishna consciousness is surely doomed to fail.

Here we wish to present some shastric evidence in support of the afore-mentioned conclusions. The following excerpts courtesy of Atma Tattva dasa:

The Founder-acharya is distinguished from all other acharyas, and his qualities and activities are outlined in the shastras:

tabhyas sarvajana trata sarvasrestatamo dhruvan
dina abhaya pradanartham visadikritya bhutale

Among all acharyas, certainly he who is the deliverer of all people, who appears in this world for the purpose of removing the fears of the fallen souls (dina-abhaya ) is the most perfect.

gitacaryokta tatvartha caramartha prakasanam
rsiproktapramananam krtva vyakhyanamuttamam

He sheds light on the ultimate meaning of the philosophical conclusions spoken by Krishna, who is the speaker of Bhagavad-gita. He also gives perfect purports to the evidences given by the rishis.

divyaprabandhan lokebhya sarakopadibhi paryantam
arthopadesa yaryanta1n vardhayaitva ca sasvatah

He propagates everywhere the meanings and purports of the songs of the previous acharyas.

natharyadi gurunam ca satakopadi yoginam
ahrtya vyasa sutranam artham lokahitaya ca
sribhasyadi mahagrantham vidhaya karunarnaya
nirjitya sarvasamayan vadena sataso’subhan

He, the ocean of mercy, contributes great books for the welfare of the people that explain the meaning of Vedanta strictly in line with the previous Vaishnava acharyas and devotees. In this way he conquers all, defeating hundreds of different kinds of inauspicious philosophies by his arguments.

ityadibhir yatisresta karye lokahite rata
nathadidesike tebhya pradhano bhavati dhruvam

Because of engaging in the welfare of the people of the world, that perfect and topmost mendicant is certainly the most important Founder acharya (pradhana ). ( Prapannamrita Tarpana 62.47-53)

Just as Vyasadeva is recognized as acharya because he presented the Vedic literatures, so Prabhupada is recognized as acharya because of his making the Vedic literatures accessible to every man all over the world, and no one since has been able to contribute anything so significant. Rather, everyone is borrowing from him-his books are the standard.

Srila Prabhupada translated and wrote purports to the four essential Vaishnava literatures, namely to 18,000 verses of Srimad-Bhagavatam, 700 verses of Bhagavad-gita, 17 volumes of Chaitanya-charitamrita and the Bhakti-rasamrita-sindhu. He not only published these books and others; he also created a monthly magazine (Back to Godhead ). He also recruited thousands of young disciples in every country of the world, whom he engaged in distributing these literatures by the millions. Prabhupada wrote 7,000 letters (printed in five volumes) and gave lectures and personal darshans, a collection of which has been published recently by the Bhaktivedanta Archives, comprising another 42 volumes of books.

Srila Prabhupada initiated a whole new movement in the field of art, producing thousands of paintings, sculptures, music and dance performances.

Srila Prabhupada built temples in Bombay, Vrindaban and Mayapur, with comfortable and stylish hotel and guest houses for each place. His disciples opened and continue to maintain hundreds of temples worldwide.

Srila Prabhupada inspired the New Vrindaban-type farm communities all over the world. He started Gurukulas for teaching Krishna consciousness to children.

Srila Prabhupada taught a whole generation a new way of life from how to eat, how to dress, how to bathe and toilet, how to live as a gentleman in this world and how ultimately to leave this world for the next world, to go back to home, back to Godhead. NO OTHER PERSON ON THIS PLANET HAS PREACHED WORLDWIDE SO EXTENSIVELY. THEREFORE HE IS THE BRAHMA SAMPRADAYA ACHARYA. What Vyasadeva is to the Vedic age, Srila Prabhupada is to the modern age and for ages to come, because everyone is taking advantage of his books, temples and devotees to preach Krishna consciousness all over the world.

More

Role Of The Rittvik Representatives Of The Acharya


Role Of The Rittvik Representatives Of The Acharya
By Sriman Hansadutta Prabhu — January 7, 1999 VNN2806

“You are a suitable person and you can give initiation to those that are ready for it. I have selected you among eleven men as ‘Rittvik representative of the Acharya, to give initiations, both first and second initiation, on my behalf.’ A newsletter is being sent to all temple presidents and GBC in this regard, listing the eleven representatives selected by His Divine Grace. Those who are initiated are the disciples of Srila Prabhupada, and anyone whom you deem fit and initiate in this way, you should send their names to be included in Srila Prabhupada’s ‘Initiated disciples’ book.”

EDITORIAL, Jan 7 (VNN) — The discussions that took place on 28th May 1977 between Srila Prabhupada and some GBC regarding initiations in the future were not known to me till years after his disappearance. Srila Prabhupada would say many things on many subjects, but unless a particular policy was written in letter form, or some other legal document such discussions on different matters were not accepted as final. Prabhupada often said you can say anything, but do not put it in writing; writing makes it legal.

More

108 Imporant Slokas from the 1972 Bhagavad-gita As It Is

Click on image to go to Post

Click on image to go to Post

The Hare Krishna Cookbook

Songs of the Vaisnava Acaryas

Bhagavad-gita As It Is 1972 Edition “Online”

click on image

click on image to visit site

Srimad Bhagavatam Online

click on image

Raja-Vidya the King of Knowledge

click on image

click on image

Blog Stats

  • 805,128 hits

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 702 other followers

Important Slokas from the Brahma-samhita

click on image

click on image

Slokas from the Sri Isopanisad

click on image

click on image

Prayers By Queen Kunti (Slokas)

click on image

Gajendra’s Prayers of Surrender (Slokas)

click on image
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 702 other followers