Concerned Australian Devotee – Australia: The GBC and ISKCON authorities told everyone Bhavananda was a pure devotee. After all, he was the zonal acarya. They even had a (now infamous) picture of him in the Back to Godhead stating, “Come Meet a Pure Devotee.”
Regarding Prabhavisnu prabhu, by dint of his rubber-stamped status he is thereby already posited as an uttama-adhikari by the GBC body. His yearly Vyasa Puja glorifications repeated that message every single year: that he is ‘sent by Krsna to deliver his disciples’ and other such false praise. Just grab hold of any of his previous Vyasa Puja publications.
In Australia, you are told to accept your temple president absolutely, otherwise you are out of ISKCON, materially and spiritually. You must completely submit to around three or four men, that’s it. They preach that your spiritual life depends on pleasing them, not Srila Prabhupada. Then, they arrange for a select few gurus who will never go against the current power structure, (who are also on the payroll) to come in, initiate, fly out, and subsequently neglect that new disciple for the rest of their life. That is the ‘preaching’ standard in Australia in every single temple today. All benefit to them for name, fame and subtle sense gratification, with absolutely no responsibility.
It is easy pickings for the gurus and the resident GBC sannyasi, Ramai Swami, as they have all position and control over the country with no responsibility. Ramai Swami is the only sannyasi in Australia, who also does not give a toss for the local concerns. He acts completely contrary to his GBC duties. He feathers his own nest, that’s all. He just wants control, control, control, bas. He will only empower a new generation of managers and leaders over his own cold, dead and lifeless body. He gets very little respect amongst the rank and file, who see him as more or less a sad, controlling, isolated figure. They ask, “Why is he still holding on? Why doesn’t he leave the management up to a new team? He does nothing! Why the fear on passing on the baton? Why don’t they train up new leaders? What is he, a sannyasi, holding on to management year after year after year?” It is really childish. Most people just laugh. If it wasn’t so sad.
Ramai is known for calling in his guru mates to heavy out their disciples when they want reform. Meanwhile the entire Vaisnava community remains fractured. It is standard ‘divide and conquer’ technique here. Their management techniques only serve to actually disempower and SHRINK the preaching, not expand it. Everyone is expendable. They don’t give a **** whose life is destroyed in pursuit of them retaining power.
As long as Maharaja has his nice apartment, new car every year and donations from a few Indians, he is perfectly happy. Throw in a Mayapur trip every year and the standard foolish grinning photo opportunities shown on Dandavats and it is back to his grhastha-paid for apartment on the Gold Coast, and easy life.
He and the Regional Secretary, Ajita, behave like fascist, dictatorial thugs. They are immature, hopeless at building community and are becoming increasingly isolated by their arrogant, selfish, childish antics. Rather than listen and be genuinely concerned when locals have issues, they get incredibly angry and threaten the rank and file. This is reality.
I am not making this up. More and more, the Australians are waking up to their scam. This is hard, as Australians are notoriously laid back, forgiving and ‘easy-going.’ The ‘leaders’ take advantage of this. But, even Aussies have their breaking point. They are getting sick of this non-inclusive, capitalist-motivated, impersonalist, thuggish administration.
So, in summary, yes they indirectly preach that Prabhavisnu is the pure devotee through the entire ISKCON structure. However, at the ground level, the TP’s are the real cult leaders: worship them and you’re in, have a contrary opinion and you’re out.