Govinda Dasa – USA: Dear Dhirasanta Prabhu you must learn to not be so quick to respond to something that you really need to think more deeply on. If you are so quick to sum up what I have said and reply the way that you did tells me that you are not thinking this through sufficiently and you need to. It appears that your mind has been affected by sentimentality rather than rationality. This is the disease of having the association of individuals who have not matured in their Krishna Consciousness. It is highly infectious.

Since you have mentioned Devamrita Swami and Radhanatha Swami I would have to think that you are attracted to the sentimental mood. Sentiment is an aspect of a person’s make up and must be there in Krishna Conscious relationships. That is sentiment not sentimentality. This is a different process. This is when a person is sentimental or driven by emotions.  Sentiment is natural in human relations and means a person’s true feelings.

A person, who is mature, is able to act on a platform of not being affected by sentimentality and sees things in their right perspective. They feel appropriately, according to time place and circumstance and react appropriately to the circumstance. A sentimental person is moved by the feeling and responds with inappropriate feelings and therefore actions for the circumstance.

I am not inferring that the pseudo Sannyasis that you mention are sentimental. Far from it, they know exactly what they are doing. They are using a specific technique to hook in the minds and hearts of innocent sentimental or inexperienced devotees. Radhanatha is not sentimental. He is very shrewd and calculating and is in full control. Watch him closely when he does his dramatic theatrics, you will see him look around to see the response he is getting. The same with Devamrta, there is no sentimentality there just a show they put on to get a specific result.

Before one can mature in ones Krishna Consciousness one must first be emotionally mature as a person.

Srila Prabhupada does not need to mature any more than he already is. It is us that need to mature. When we mature we are able to discern the qualities that Srila Prabhupada exhibits (he did not need to pretend to be self realized nor did he need to use gimmicks or sales techniques) and what are the qualities of the people that we take shelter of.

I am sure that you have seen hours of video on Srila Prabhupada. Have you ever seen him swooning and crooning? In a dreamlike trace state as he gives class, dances or sings? No? I know I have not. If this is so, then where the hell do these guys get this from? Just take a good long look at them next time they sing, give class or dance in ecstasy and you will see what I mean.

If you are too much attracted to a person’s charisma, position, look or style then you will not be able to see who the person really is, as opposed to the display or façade they present to the world.

A person who is displaying a ‘false image’ of themselves to the world is usually hiding something. A neophyte devotee may not see this for they see (feel) more the glamour rather than the realization. Words instead of deeds. Form instead of substance.

Mature devotees are not fooled by flamboyant, overly sentimental and tactile (hugging) mannerisms.  We all know this to be an act. But what lies below this facade?

An aspiring devotee needs to be able to discern from a prospective Guru or associate that they do in fact follow the instructions of pure devotees and in our case, Srila Prabhupada. If they are fabricating their own “way” – then one would assume that they are either a pure devotee, akin to our Srila Prabhupada or that they are cheating.

Do your homework. Make a study of them from reason and not sentimentality. There is no way that you have done this so far to come to the conclusions that you have.

Everything that Srila Prabhupada has given us is ‘principal’ based. That is he is instructing us according to strict Vaisnava principals. A principal must be able to be applied in all situations or it is not a principal. So apply the principal that Srila Prabhupada has given us to your queries on the formation of the Deputies or having devotees gain academic qualifications to aid in so called Academic preaching.
Please remember that Srila Prabhupada was not a villager. He was an educated man. In both mundane and spiritual subject matters. He went to the most prestigious schools and colleges in India. He did not complete his degree. That did not make him a failure.

He knew the value of mundane academia and did not care for it. He knew that purity was the force and that purity to the higher Vaisnava principals was this force. He knew that we did not need to pander to the pseudo intellectuals of western atheistic academia. He knew that what he was instructing us was not only much higher but it was applicable not only then but for all time. He was not ashamed of our Vaisnava philosophy and therefore he did not want us to be apologetic for it. He wanted us to preach to the academics and make them into devotees. Not the other way round.  He gave us principals to follow. Try to accept this if you can. You really need to in order to progress in your spiritual life.

So please don’t infer that Srila Prabhupada was a fool and did not know what he was doing. For that is exactly what you are doing. Wake up! These so called devotees have no right to change anything. Nor do you have any right to support them in Srila Prabhupada’s movement. If they want they can start their own movement for sentimental devotees. There are many thousands of these. They are as a class termed sahajiyas.

In fact Srila Prabhupada was against devotees going to academia and our movement seeking government accreditation. He was totally against bureaucracy.  He has instructed time and time again to stick to his program and not to change anything. To cooperate to spread his movement in the way he ordered us to do it. He set us on a course of pure devotional service.

So please think very, very hard before you write on public forum. You don’t realize just how offensive you are to Srila Prabhupada and how it breaks our heart to hear your words.

The devotees that you mention will never try and convince us of their heresy they know better than that, so they turn their back on us and turn to devotees who will accept their apasiddhantic principals and techniques. A heretic is someone who is against the orthodox teaching of Krishna Consciousness. Orthodox comes from the original Greek meaning – correct teachings. Now of course it means the ‘vox populi opinion’ as everything is watered down in the Kali yuga. But we follow the original meaning – the correct teachings.
We are neither traditionalists nor are we Modernists who follow popular opinions and traditions. We are orthodox followers of Srila Prabhupada. Prabhupadanugas. So until you accept this you will never understand what is in the hearts of the true follower of Srila Prabhupada and you will never understand Srila Prabhupada.

I am sorry that I have to be hard like this but although you seem like a nice person you don’t really know what is happening at all. So wake up and get real. Seek the shelter of more qualified devotees than the ones you have in your life. They are not helping you at all.
The Australian Yatra has been kept back and in the dark for far too long by the hard work of Prabhavisnu swami building his little empire, and the “Rock n Roll” indifference of Ramai Swami. Your dream of a Temple in Hobart should wait until you mature yourself. Boil the milk now. Go and seek out devotees who are more mature in their Krishna Consciousness. There are many in Australia. Not everyone may have the personality that you like but see what is in their heart. See their struggle.

So many devotees write in to this site from Australia and they seem like they have what it takes to make it. Seek them out and hang with them. Study Srila Prabhupada books. See what he wants and what are the principals that he wants us to have in our life. Forget these fools and rascals. They don’t really care for you. They only care for labha-puja-pratistha. “They want some material profit and they want some material adoration, and labha-puja-pratistha, and stability.”

Govinda das

(revised by author)