Some Obey Him Whole-heartedly
by Radhakrsna das
This essay describes the various attempts made by individuals, to NOT to follow the clear instructions and words, of Srila Prabhupada, in the name of the multifarious counter-checks of “guru/sastra/sadhu,” “not in his books” and other excuses.
THE FOUR SYNDROMES, OR VADAS OF COMPLICATED MIS-INTERPRETATIONS OF PRABHUPADA’S CLEAR INSTRUCTIONS
1. The PLSBPS-VADA SYNDROME. Or the pre-liberated Sarvabauma Battacarya pastime syndrome. Sarvabauma was an eternal associate of Lord Chaitanya. But in this pastime, he pretended to be a dry logician and preached to Lord Chaitanya his interpretation of the vedas, for 7 days. Lord Chaitanya said that he understood the vedic slokas very clearly, they were like the sun, but his (Sarvabauma’s) interpretations were like a cloud and obscured the clear meaning of the vedas. Sarvabauma pretended to be confused in this pastime, and then was liberated by Lord Chaitanya.
Similarly, Srila Prabhupada has made clear instructions on this current controversy. (See appendix below.) But it has been the fashion for disciples to second-guess what Srila Prabhupada actually meant to say. They will cross reference his instructions with folio research and try to “approve” or discredit his final instructions. This resembles a lawyer trying to find a “loophole” to invalidate the clear evidence. Many criminals have walked away from the courtroom, due to such “loopholes.” But a simple devotee will see the clear hypocrisy in such things, and try to follow Lord Chaitanya’s instructions in this pastime, not to cloud the clear instructions of Srila Prabhupada by cross reference and over-intelligent interpretations. Let us try to liberate ourselves, just as Lord Chaitanya liberated Sarvabauma in that pastime. Srila Prabhupada said what he meant, and meant what he said. We do not need to strain our brains to figure out what he said, rather we need to accept his words in the simple mood of following, in the mood of being his simple servants.
2. Second is the SUKARACARYA-VADA SYNDROME. Bali Maharaja was given a clear request from Vamanadeva. Sukaracarya tryed to dissuade Bali from following Vamana’s request, because Sukaracarya knew that Vamana was Lord Visnu, and he knew what the consequences would be. He was a smarta-brahmana, and he was worried about his personal income and welfare. Because of his vested interests, he was willing to circumvent the order of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
It appears that some have placed personal interests and income and job security, etc, ahead of the clear orders of Srila Prabhupada. The purport of this should be clear to the readers. This only results in chaos and dissatisfaction of the spiritual master, which reeks havoc in spiritual life.
3. Third is the SONS OF YAYATI-VADA SYNDROME. Maharaja Yayati was cursed to old age, and he requested his sons to trade their youth with him, so on. He asked the first son, but was flatly refused. He asked the other sons, so on, we know the story. Finally the good son obeys his father.
The purport is- BAD SONS disobey, whereas GOOD SONS obey the father. The good son anticipates the desire of his sire and he obeys even before the instruction is given. With proper reflection, we can surmise what the spirit of Srila Prabhupada’s desire was for the continuance of his movement, and this, obviously, involved his instructions of initiation. We have seen by the present guru system that chaos has indeed ensued. The current system does NOT reflect the spirit of Prabhupada’s desires. A guru falls and the disciples either bloop or they fight reform and get fanatical and hold on to the defunct guru. Or some disciples become sober, if they are intelligent. In Srila Prabhupada’s ritvik system, none of that would have happened. If the ritvik acarya fell, it would not be consequential. The disciple would go on in his faith. Also, 95% of Prabhupada’s direct disciples would not have been driven away.
So many Prabhupada disciples still disbelieve the plan of ritvik after departure. Partly this is because they have not studied the situation and read the material. They give the same arguments over and over, which are defeated already in TFO. I’ve talked to them, and they haven’t read the TFO, or they skimmed it. Also, they fail to realize that Srila Prabhupada was capable to see the future, to see what is happening right now. He was tri-kala-jnana, so it is not hard to understand that he ordered a ritvik system, in order to counteract what he knew would happen in the future.
So, the good son will see the obvious instructions of Srila Prabhupada and try to follow and stop the continuing chaos. The good son would try to pull Srila Prabhupada’s movement back together, by following Srila Prabhupada’s simple instructions, which were given clearly in the first place.
4. Fourth, we have the JARASANDHA-VADA SYNDROME. Jarasandha was a demon in Krishna’s pastimes, who was defeated 17 times by Krishna, but still he was puffed up and ill advised by his counselors, and he still thought that he could defeat Krishna in the end. This is the power of Maya, in making puffed up people think they can still win, even after overwhelming defeats in the past.
In our situation, in the not so distant past, we have seen 6 fall from the original 11gurus. We have seen huge chaos as the result. The leaders should have learned our lesson from that. But no, like Jarasandha, they failed to see the guru system as defunct and faulty. We continued with cosmetic alterations only. And now the 7th has clearly fallen, and the Jarasandha-vada-like leaders still insist on the defunct guru system. It has failed so many times, and caused complete havoc in the spiritual lives of thousands of innocent people, but still they want to defy the clear instructions of Srila Prabhupada, and continue on this suicidal path of chaos. This is the amazing power of Maya and attachment to one’s material situation.
We should educate ourselves on what Prabhupada said and read the TFO. We should all pull together, and give up the faulty syndromes of faulty logic and mis-following of instruction. We should do it for Srila Prabhupada. We should do it for ourselves and for the sake of the world and humanity.
APPENDIX- How can they say there’s no evidence, or its all speculation, or philosophically unsound? When the real evidence comes from Prabhupada’s words and orders?
A. FROM THE BOOKS: (claim- “there’s no evidence in the books.” Wrong.) From Adi-lila 1.46: “..the spiritual master is always considered either one of the confidential associates of Srimati Radharani or a manifested representation of Srila Nityananda Prabhu.” 2. “When one has attained the topmost position of maha-bhagavata, he is to be accepted as a guru and worshipped exactly like Hari, the Personality of Godhead. Only such a person is eligible to occupy the post of a guru.” (C.c. Madhya, 24.330, purport) – Note: from these statements, we understand that Srila Prabhupada could not have “appointed” or “ordered” the original 11 men, or ANYBODY to be such a “confidential associate of Srimati Radharani.” How could they be “ordered’ when 7 biggies fall down hard and some became crazy?? Srila Prabhupada said that the bona fide acarya DOES NOT fall down-
Quotes from books, etc. – “Well if he is bad, how can he become a guru?” (The Science of Self Realization, chapter 2) “The pure devotee is always free from the clutches of Maya and her influence.” (S.B. 5.3.14) “There is no possibility that a first class devotee will fall down.” (C.c. Madhya, 22.71) “A spiritual master is always liberated.” (Letter to TKG)
B. SASTRA – (claim – “no sastric evidence”) The term “ritvik” is found many places in Srimad Bhagavatam. For one thing, there is no sastric forbidding of a post-samadhi ritvik system. No mention does not mean that a great acarya cannot implement according to time and circumstance. Managerial decisions in deep dark Kali Yuga are not described by sastra, and adjustment can be made by the great acarya. Sastra definitely does say that the empowered GREAT ACARYA can order according to time and circumstance, not being bound by rules, or “NOT SUBJECTED to any Vedic rules or regulations”-
“Therefore the mercy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and Isvara Puri is not subjected to any Vedic rules and regulations” (C.c. Madhya, 10.137) AND – “As Hari is not subject to the criticism of mundane rules and regulations, the spiritual master empowered by Him is also not subjected.” (C.c. Madhya, 10.136, text and purport) (clearly Prabhupada wanted this system, due to time and circumstance, seeing how unqualified aspirants could do harm to his movement.)
C. SADHU – (claim- there’s no support from sadhus) We should seek advice from sadhus, BUT ONLY accept instructions that are IN LINE with our own founder-acarya. From book- Sri Krsna Bhajanamrta, by sadhu- Srila Narahari Sarakara.-
Verse 48: “A disciple may hear some instruction from another advanced Vaisnava, but after gaining that good instruction he must bring it and present it to his own spiritual master. After presenting them he should hear the same teachings again from his spiritual master with appropriate instructions.” And- Verse 49: “…a disciple who listens to the words of other Vaisnavas, even if their instructions are proper and true, but does not re-confirm those teachings with his own spiritual master and instead directly personally accepts these instructions, is considered a bad disciple and a sinner.”
D. GURU- HIS DIRECTLY WRITTEN AND SPOKEN WORDS ON RITVIK ISSUE-
1. July 9th letter. Its signed and authorization is explained in TFO. 2. His will – “The system of management will continue AS IT IS NOW and there is no need of any change” and “provided the new director is my initiated disciple following strictly.”) 3. Letters and conversations- “continue to become ritvik and act on my charge” “Make your own field and continue to become ritvik and act on my behalf.’ so on… TKG- “process of initiation to be followed in the future…” 4. The tape of May 28th… “when you are no longer with us,” answer- “ritviks.” Parts of tape are in question, but Srila Prabhupada does not contradict himself, saying ritvik, then something else in the next paragraph. Rather he answered the question point blank, saying “deputy, or ritvik,” understanding what “no longer with us” means. The rest of the tape cannot be accepted as evidence, as we strongly suspect tampering with the tape, as dubbing sounds are made, background noises change, as 2 experts said, “falsification.” This tampering has happened before, in LA with his tapes and letters, just ask the LA devotees.
E. OTHER EVIDENCE FROM PRABHUPADA’S WORDS- (just a few of many quotes)
Srila Prabhupada: “He, [Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura, founder of the Gaudiya Matha] before passing away, he gave them all direction – and he NEVER said that this man should be the next [guru] acharya. But these people, just after he passed away, they began to fight, ‘Who shall be the next acharya? That is the failure. They never thought, ‘guru maharaja gave us instruction on so many things, why did he not say, “This man should be the next acharya?”‘ They wanted to create somebody ARTIFICIALLY as acharya and EVERYTHING FAILED. They did not even consider COMMON SENSE – that if guru maharaja had wanted to APPOINT somebody as acharya, why he did not say? He said so many things and this point he missed? The main point? And they insisted on it. They declared, ‘COME ON UNFIT PERSONS to become acharya,’ then another man comes, THEN ANOTHER, then another. So better to remain a foolish person perpetually to be directed by guru maharaja. So that is perfection. And as soon as it was announced that, ‘Guru maharaja is dead, now I am so advanced that I can kill my guru and become [guru]’.” (CONV 8/15/76) (Does this hit the nail on the head?)
Tamala Krishna: “The process of purification must be there. …No rubber stamp.” Srila Prabhupada: “YOU CAN CHEAT, but it will not be effective. Just see our Gaudiya Matha. Everyone wanted to be guru. A small temple and “guru.” What kind of Guru? The result is that now everyone is claiming to be [guru] acharya even though they may be kanistha adhikary [spiritual neophytes], with no ability to preach. In some camps, the [guru] acharya is being changed three times a year. Therefore, we may not commit the same MISTAKE in our ISKCON camp.” (4/28/74) (Well, did we make the SAME MISTAKE, or not?)
“… his associate gentlemen unauthorizedly selected one acharya and later it proved to be a failure. The result is that now EVERYONE is claiming to be acharya…in some camps the acharya is being CHANGED three times a year. Therefore amongst my Godbrothers NO ONE IS QUALIFIED to become acharya. So it is better NOT TO MIX with my Godbrothers very intimately,” (How do 100 gurus from America become more qualified than the Vedic born disciples of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta?)
Note- How can we assume that the alleged “order” to be “eternal gurus” were made in May 77, just a few years later, after understanding the above quotes? Do not the results confirm the above warnings?
F. OTHER WITNESSES AND PROOFS- (just a few)
1. Yasodanandana dasa’s dairy entry of his conversation with TKG- “After departure?,” said Yasoda. TKG said, “they’ll be ritvik, its all on tape.” Alas, the tapes were never to be found. Where are they? 2. Gauridas Pandit witnessed (right after July 9th letter) what Srila Prabhupada said, as he fanned him, 2 feet away- Srila Prabhupada said “ritvik after departure.” Who do you believe? After the Topanga confession, I certainly believe Gauridas. He is a simple devotee who only wants this movement to succeed. He had no motive to exaggerate. On the other hand, the Gosvami confessed the same to be true later at Topanga, and then tried to hide his confession, and now everybody seems to ignore this glaring fact. The truth here is not hard to see, that is, for the simple in heart. 3. Satsvarupa Maharaja, Tamala Krishna Goswami, Jayadvaita Swami, and other GBCs sometimes refer to “pre-ritvik” conversations which would have taken place before May 28th. For example, in December 1980, at Topanga temple, Tamala Krishna discussed how five or six men went to see Srila Prabhupada and they discussed the ritvik guru (officiating on behalf of Srila Prabhupada) instruction. Many suspect that certain GBCs have destroyed the tapes of these talks. It would not have supported the “guru appointment” theory.
I hope this message rests well, and I hope we unite together in the service of Srila Prabhupada’s simple instructions and effectuate a true revival, and not cosmetic patchwork.
Your simple servant.