We should also note that there was never any talk of a prospective disciple choosing a guru, because the only guru was Srila Prabhupada and as far as choosing which " 'ritvik' -representative of the acarya Srila Prabhupada" to write to, Srila Prabhupada makes it clear that the Temple President is to write to the nearest one, with all the initiation recommendations from his temple.
Submitted by Damaghosa dasa
14 July, 2016
Srimad-bhagavatam 2.1.2, Translation and Purport by Srila Prabhupada:
Those persons who are materially engrossed, being blind to the knowledge of ultimate truth, leave many subject matters for hearing in human society, O Emperor.
In the revealed scriptures there are two nomenclatures for the householder’s life. One is gṛhastha, and the other is gṛhamedhī. The gṛhasthas are those who live together with wife and children but live transcendentally for realizing the ultimate truth. The gṛhamedhīs, however, are those who live only for the benefit of the family members, extended or centralized, and thus are envious of others. The word medhī indicates jealousy of others. The gṛhamedhīs, being interested in family affairs only, are certainly envious of others. Therefore, one gṛhamedhī is not on good terms with another gṛhamedhī, and in the extended form, one community, society or nation is not on good terms with another counterpart of selfish interest. In the age of Kali, all the householders are jealous of one another because they are blind to the knowledge of ultimate truth. They have many subject matters for hearing-political, scientific, social, economic and so on-but due to a poor fund of knowledge, they set aside the question of the ultimate miseries of life, namely miseries of birth, death, old age and disease. Factually, the human life is meant for making an ultimate solution to birth, death, old age and disease, but the gṛhamedhīs, being illusioned by the material nature, forget everything about self-realization. The ultimate solution to the problems of life is to go back home, back to Godhead, and thus, as stated in the Bhagavad-gītā (8.16), the miseries of material existence-birth, death, old age and disease-are removed.
The process of going back home, back to Godhead, is to hear about the Supreme Lord and His name, form, attributes, pastimes, paraphernalia and variegatedness. Foolish people do not know this. They want to hear something about the name, form, etc., of everything temporary, and they do not know how to utilize this propensity of hearing for the ultimate good. Misguided as they are, they also create some false literatures about the name, form, attributes, etc., of the ultimate truth. One should not, therefore, become a gṛhamedhī simply to exist for envying others; one should become a real householder in terms of the scriptural injunctions.
"The greatest danger to our movement will come when we manufacture and create our own process for worshiping the deities. So don't ask any more new questions, whatever is going on, follow it just to the exact standard as I have given you, that's all."
As an initiated disciple of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada and as a member of the International Society for Krishna consciousness, I herewith call to account your past and present preaching activities. Don't think that you are beyond accountability, because of your status as a Swami. Every devotee is accountable before his guru, and in the name of our spiritual master, I herewith demand that accountability from you.
Srila Prabhupada: Well, if he is bad, how can he become a guru? [Laughter.] How can iron become gold? Actually, a guru cannot be bad, for if someone is bad, be cannot be a guru. You cannot say "bad guru." That is a contradiction. What you have to do is simply try to understand what a genuine guru is. The definition of a genuine guru is that he is simply talking about God--that's all. If he's talking about some other nonsense, then he is not a guru. A guru cannot be bad.
"ENJOYING THE ASSETS." According to Srila Prabhupada, the Gaudiya Matha's deviants took all of this trouble simply in order to set themselves up with nice big buildings for comfortable living. He would call their efforts, "a free hotel," or "dahl and chappatis sadhus," etc.
"In this regard, Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura remarks that Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura and Śyāmānanda Gosvāmī, although not born in brāhmaṇa families, are accepted as bona fide spiritual masters because they were brāhmaṇas by qualification. "
Personally I have no realization but I do have respect for this hearing process which Prabhupada mentions above means- until we come to this point, of constantly wanting to hear from the spiritual master, we are lacking in realization.
Next you ask if I am present in my picture and form? Yes. In form as well as in teachings. To carry out the teachings of guru is more important than to worship the form, but none of them should be neglected. Form is called vapu and teachings is called vāṇī. Both should be worshiped. Vāṇī is more important than vapu.
Devotees gathered on Sunday at the Krishna Balarama Mandir in Vancouver, Canada for Kirtan (chanting and dancing), lecturing (philosophical discussion) and prasadam feasting.