Devotees and well wishers of ISKCON: In view of the recent spiritual falldown of PrabhaVishnu das, let us take a look at the ISKCON Law Book, better known as the “Itsgone Joke book” where we find the GBC has created ‘laws’ by ‘very mercifully’ jumping over statements and standards set up by our Founder Acharya Śrīla Prabhupāda. This they did by coming up with many ludicrous statements never found in writing in all of Śrīla Prabhupāda’s Books (about eighty of them), or in all of his letters (around 6,500), or never spoken of even once by Śrīla Prabhupāda in all of his recorded tapes(CDS), and never seen in Śrīla Prabhupad’s practical actions.
By carefully studying the ISKCON ‘Law’ Book, one sees through the faulty hypocritical ways of the GBC who have created the most strangest and dangerous laws governing a religious society, never found in the history of Bona fide Vaiṣṇava religious tradition, what to speak of such laws being able to even govern common sense basic ordinary moral behavior to be followed in human society.
(1) In page 69, Text 220.127.116.11. of the Iskcon Law Book, it is stated as follows:
“If a guru is engaged in sense gratification, violating one or more of the regulative principles, but there is hope that he can be rectified, then his disciples should not reject him but should allow time for such rectification to take place, and they should take shelter of Śrīla Prabhupāda and senior Vaiṣṇavas as śikṣā gurus”.
By the above statement or “Law” of the GBC, we can understand the following points:
a. ISKCON leaders and the GBC body openly and shamelessly claim that conditioned souls with the tendencies to commit gross sinful activities by breaking not only one, but more of the regulative principles, can function as initiating spiritual masters in the pure disciplic succession of completely God realized eternal Gurus. This is evidenced by their historically repeatedly disastrous and failed actions of trying to place conditioned souls in the eternal Paramparā of self realized souls since 1981 with the spiritual falldown of the first Iskcon Guru Jayatīrtha das, until all the way to the spiritual falldown of the thirty ninth Iskcon Guru, PrabhaViṣṇu das, early this month (January 2012). (Please note that this figure does not include the ones the GBC have in the past and possibly at present are keeping under the wraps as long as it is in their power to do so.)
This very law concocted by the GBC is in complete contrast and opposite view of what Śrīla Prabhupāda states in the Chaitanya Charitamrta Antya Līlā Ch 13 txt 133 purport:
“It is the duty of a Vaiṣṇava ācārya to prevent his disciples and followers from violating the principles of Vaiṣṇava behaviour. He should always advise them to strictly follow the regulative principles, which will protect them from falling down.”
Therefore if it is a Vaiṣṇava Ācārya’s duty to prevent his disciples and followers from violating the regulative principles, then it is clearly understood that such a Vaiṣṇava Ācārya must himself be already expert in following all of the regulative principles.
b. On the GBC’s point of “taking shelter of Śrīla Prabhupāda”, when one first joins ISKCON (post 1977), one is allowed to chant Śrīla Prabhupāda’s Prāṇam mantras exclusively, yet simultaneously the newcomer is instructed that one’s chanting of Śrīla Prabhupāda’s praṇāma mantra is only temporary. This is because it is soon to be eclipsed by the chanting of Prāṇāṁs to one of the ‘living Iskcon Gurus’ who would shortly be ‘mercifully’ intervening in one’s spiritual life. Later, however when one of these GBC selected ‘living Guru’ breaks loose with illicit sex or any of the other three regulative principles, then for the time being the poor ‘disciple’ can once again run to the shelter of Śrīla Prabhupāda, by chanting of his praṇāma mantras and offering of Bhogha to Śrīla Prabhupāda. However all of this is of course ‘optional’, and definitely temporary, and must be performed under the condition that one understands that Śrīla Prabhupāda is only one’s ‘Emergency’ Guru.
The 1998 Suspension of Harikeśa dāsa confirms the above point:
“Harikeśa dāsa has acted abnormally, by assuming himself to be an incarnation of Skanda, Lord Chaitanya, etc, and his non-devotee girlfriend and a female disciple as divine Incarnations of goddesses of fortune”.
Thus the GBC Executive committee has decided to invoke the lightest possible sanction by probating and suspending Harikeśa dāsa from his Guru position”. Yet, in the very same breath, the GBC Executive committee contradict themselves by giving a very ‘liberal’ choice to the poor disciples of Harikeśa as follows:
“While his disciples should not accept Śikṣā from him absolutely, they may, if they desire, continue to honour him as their Spiritual Master in gratitude for his mercy and guidance in the past and in expectation of his restoration in the future”.
Further, in the article “Suspension of Harikeśa Dāsa” section No.3 of title called “Specific Conditions of Probations as Guru”, it is stated as follows:
“That Harikeśa’s disciples may continue to offer Pūjā and Bhogha to him and recite his Praṇāma mantras; or they may perform these functions instead to Śrīla Prabhupāda alone; Or to both of them together. The choice among these belongs to the individual disciple to make”.
By the above one out of innumerable similar examples in the past, any sane devotee would be completely disgusted by the GBC’s greatly ‘liberal’, dangerous and callous attitude in promoting the worship of their elected or self elected Iskcon Gurus. First they prod the innocent rank & file devotees to worship as a Guru someone who has the latent potency to have illicit sex with women men & children. Later, when that potency actually becomes manifested, the GBC in order to be extra ‘merciful’ mentions to the poor disciples that if one still feels awkward and not comfortable with worshiping their degraded ‘Guru’ alone, then one can ‘add’ Śrīla Prabhupāda in the picture together, ie, worshiping the actual Mahabhagavat, Śrīla Prabhupāda along with a sexual loving ‘Guru’ together.
On the point in their ‘Law’ of “hope for rectification” of their appointed Gurus, the GBC try to make a last ditch desperate attempt to save face for themselves and their Gurus by trying to impress upon the poor ‘disciples’ to somehow be liberal enough to give their degraded Guru a second chance so that he can continue his impostor role. This was seen in the GBC resolution published in October 1986 which states :
“That all of Bhavānanda Goswami’s GBC and initiation responsibilities can be resumed by him as of October 1986”.
This meant that Bhavānanda’ was given the green signal just only after one year of his homosexual falldowns (as he had seemingly ‘rectified’ himself) to be worshipped again by his ‘disciples’ to be as ‘good as God and the sum total of the demigods’. This worship was sadly done on the sacred altar where the Deities are installed in different parts of the world, including even in the holiest of dhams, Māyāpur & Vṛndāvan where Bhavānanda was chiefly in charge of. This low class cunning tactic of reinstating the degraded Guru shortly after his spiritual falldown is made by the GBC just to divert the ‘disciples’ mind from thinking deeply about the whole cheating game that they had been duped into in the first place for so long.
Such has been the past 34 years state of consciousness of the GBC’s in ISKCON, who are supposed to lead a movement that Śrīla Prabhupāda stated “will save the world from gliding to hell”. Therefore after studying this matter thoroughly, how can any honest devotee ever expect good government from the present persons in the Governing Body Commission of ISKCON who seem incompetent to save even themselves from gliding to hell what to speak of saving the world?
Completely different from all the above concoctions in the ISKCON “law” Book, Śrīla Prabhupāda states in Cc. Madhya Līlā 22.71:
“There is no possibility that a first class devotee will fall down, even though he may mix with non devotees to preach,” Any perfected or first class devotee can never fall down spiritually.
(2) The ISKCON LAW BOOK also states in page 69 TX 18.104.22.168.1 as follows: “That if a guru has become hopelessly entangled in sense gratification and it has been shown either by observation or from his own admission, that he has been regularly violating the regulative principles of Krishna consciousness, and if there is virtually no hope for his rectification, then the disciple should reject him and may accept reinitiation.”
There are also few points to consider on this above GBC ‘law’.
a. There has never been one instance of a bona fide Guru coming in the pure disciplic succession of self realized souls ever becoming hopelessly entangled in sense gratification. Here the GBC very ‘mercifully’ allows the ‘disciple’ of the fallen ISKCON Guru to once more try out one’s luck by shuffling and kicking him or her around like a football to another of one their elected or self elected ‘Gurus’.
b. The subject of “reinitiation’ was never mentioned even once by Śrīla Prabhupāda in all of his books, tapes, or letters.
c. In ISKCON, since the departure of Śrīla Prabhupāda, we have seen the majority of devotees who joined after 1977 as ‘disciples’ of the Iskcon Gurus, being reinitiated twice, with a significant number thrice initiated, and a few even up to four times initiated. They have to carry the embarrassment, ridicule and confusion of having to change their spiritual names every few years or so, after having experienced their ‘appointed by Śrīla Prabhupāda or appointed by the GBC Guru’, fall down grossly into illicit sinful activities not even imagined by the regular bhakta in Iskcon.
d. Śrīla Prabhupāda clearly warns in the Chaitanya Charitamrta Adi līlā chapter 1 Text 35 purport, “A devotee must have only one initiating spiritual master, because in the scriptures acceptance of more than one initiating Guru is always forbidden”. By mentioning that a devotee must have only one initiating Spiritual master, it is already clear proof that Śrīla Prabhupāda is definitely not referring to a conditioned soul, apt to fall down any time from his spiritual regulative principles as mentioned in the ISKCON ‘law’ Book, or to the species of Gurus that the GBC has been promoting since the past 30 years. This is because the actual bona fide initiating Spiritual master gives divya jñāna (planting the seed of spiritual knowledge) and the seed of bhakti latā bīja or the creeper of devotional. He is also fully capable of delivering his disciples from their many trillions of lifetimes of sinful actions and reactions (Karma). The actual bona fide Guru is fully competent to deliver the disciple from out of the ten coverings of the material universe, back to the spiritual sky.
e. Therefore all these above qualifications of an actual bona fide Guru are definitely not a task fit for a conditioned soul with the tendency to “violate one or more of the basic regulative principles”, as mentioned in the Iskcon ‘Law’ Book. And since the actual bona fide Guru has such an extraordinarily mighty task to perform, he definitely has to be on the highest platform (Chaitanya Charitamrta Madhya Līlā Vol. 3 Ch 24 TX 330, purport). Thus when one accepts a bona fide spiritual master who is actually free from the four defects of a conditioned soul, and free from gross and subtle sinful activities then there is never any question of his falling down from spiritual life and forcing the poor disciple to change ones initiating spiritual master to go out shopping for another, as experienced in Iskcon Post 1977. Thus Śrīla Prabhupāda’s statement that
“One should have only one initiating Spiritual master” is clear by understanding his above mentioned quotes.
Śrīla Prabhupāda also goes on to say in the C.C. Adi Līlā 1.35:
“There is no limit, however, to the number of instructing spiritual masters one may accept. Generally a spiritual master who constantly instructs a disciple in spiritual science, becomes his initiating spiritual master later on”,
Thus it is clearly Śrīla Prabhupāda whose gracious and gargantuan library of Books, audio, video cassettes, DVDs etc instructs thousands of people daily.
Unfortunately for everyone and for themselves, the GBC have been carrying out this most dangerous experiment of reinitiation for the past 30 years upon thousands of devotees that joined ISKCON post 1977, with the most disastrous results. Therefore after understanding these above mentioned quotes of Śrīla Prabhupad’s in the Chaitanya Charitamrta, we submit that the GBC cannot insist that people keep accepting their conditioned soul initiating ‘Gurus’and make ‘laws’ in their ‘Law Book’ enforcing this crazy idea of reintiation.
(3) The ISKCON “law” book also states in Page 58-59, Text 6.2.1, and point No.3 on the qualifications necessary to be approved as a dīkṣā Guru in ISKCON as follows: “Must have not had a fall down within 5 years”.
From the above “law” we can understand the following points.
(a) This time period of not having had a spiritual falldown for “5 years” which the GBC mentions is a total concoction on their part, as such a time period was never mentioned by Śrīla Prabhupāda in all of his books, conversations, or tapes etc.
(b) A few years ago one of the original founding fathers and participants of the zonal ācārya system (now departed), commented when challenged, as to how the GBC came up with “5” years and not ‘Six’ ‘ten’ or ‘twenty’ etc, he replied that the GBC, being the ‘ultimate authority’ were fully authorized to decide and choose such a time limit on such matters. As this authorization never came from Śrīla Prabhupāda, our humble question to this statement is “Authorization from whom”?
(c) That as soon as the Clocks ticked past 12.00AM Midnight on the eve of 5 years after an Iskcon Guru has had a spiritual falldown such as illicit Sex etc , he was perfectly eligible to knock on the GBC doors waking them up from their sleep, to demand his Guru rights such as:
(1) Being a “bona fide Guru coming in the Disciplic succession of self realized souls
(2) Being qualified to plant the seed of bhakti in the heart of a conditioned soul,
(3) Being able to annihilate such a ‘disciple’s’ sinful activities performed for crores of lifetimes
(4) Competent to deliver oneself as well as his conditioned disciple from the clutches of the material universe Durgā fort and
(5) and send the disciple back safely to the lotus feet of Lord Kṛṣṇa in the Spiritual world. All this is suddenly made possible according to the GBC, just because the time limit of ‘Five’ years had elapsed!
(4) The ISKCON “LAW” Book states in page 69 Text 22.214.171.124.2. as follows; “That if the spiritual Master takes on DEMONIAC QUALITIES and becomes inimical to ISKCON, he should be rejected and the disciple may take reinitiation”.
The following points are to be considered:
(a)There is not even one single historical example of a bonafide Guru in our disciplic succession ever becoming a demon.
(b) How can one have a “fallen” “suspended” or “demoniac” relationship with the Supreme Lord or his pure representative, the GURU ? Therefore after studying carefully all the above points, the reader can realize that it is no wonder that Śrīla Prabhupāda warns us in the Chaitanya Charitamrta Antya Līlā Ch 5, Tx 71-74, to never think that a genuine eternal Guru can be a conditioned soul: “One is forbidden to accept the Guru or Spiritual master as an ordinary man”.
(c) And in the CC Adi Līlā Ch 7, TX 88, Śrīla Prabhupāda mentions: “If one who is not yet developed, imitates such symptoms (of a liberated Guru) artificially, he create chaos in the spiritual life of human society”. Śrīla Prabhupāda further defines in the Chaitanya Charitamrta that “Mixing the spiritual with Material is the Māyāvādī’s business”. “Guruṣu nara matiḥ yasya vai naraka saḥ”: anyone who thinks that the bona fide Guru can be a materially conditioned souls apt to break the regulative principles and so forth, has a mentality that is nārakī or hellish – – – – ” The Sahajiyās… consider the acharyas to be mixed devotees. Thus they clear their path to hell” (CC Adi Līlā CH 7 TX 22).
Thus no sane member of ISKCON should ever agree to the insane proposals and chaotic conditions created by the GBC for the past 30 years, by equating the actual meaning of the word “Guru”, especially the Guru coming in the Pure Disiplic Succession of Self realized Spiritual masters, with one who can be “Demoniac”, “Suspended” or “fallen”, as unfortunately the ISKCON ‘Law’ Book has done. This results in a terrible misunderstanding of the actual bona fide Guru’s position becoming mixed with the position of conditioned souls, or partially realized souls, who have been occupying the posts of “Initiating Gurus” in ISKCON since 1978 till the present day-January 2012, and who knows for how long more.