From Self Service to Fully Serving

Overcoming the Obstacle that is “ISKCON”

by Gokulänanda

The Western world is relatively new to the teachings of Kåñëa Consciousness. When these teachings were brought from India just over fifty years ago by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedänta Swämi Prabhupäda, they were potent and unadulterated. However, after he left physical manifestation, so-called “ISKCON” allowed his teachings to be watered down or even changed, in the stubborn hope that it would draw more followers. By doing so, they were catering to a materially-minded Western society, thereby creating the opposite effect to what they had hoped. It has proven to be an enormous obstacle, but it can–and will–be overcome by those who take necessary steps to advance spiritually and expose the fraudulent ways of so-called “ISKCON.”

The leaders of so-called “ISKCON” have made wrong and sometimes outrageous decisions that have greatly altered Çréla Prabhupäda’s original message and method for spreading his movement. Post-1978, they made changes to the books. They concocted and instituted a “No Objection Certificate,” altering the way in which a guru is to be recognized. They lead as a group rather than centering around a single Äcärya. These examples are just the tip of the iceberg. All of these alterations must be terminated, and the movement must return to its original processes and methods in order to have a functioning, effective institution that creates an opportunity for tangible spiritual advancement.

“One should learn to become the servant of those who are in knowledge of the Supreme Lord. If one is fortunate enough to take shelter of a pure devotee, hear from him about self-realization and follow in his footsteps, one will be gradually elevated to the position of a pure devotee. “
Bhagavad Gétä, 13.26, purport

When one learns of the eternal relationship between the living entity and Lord Kåñëa and thus begins to perform service under the direction of a representative of Kåñëa, that is the same as service to the Supreme Lord Himself. It’s only natural that one seek out a guru in order to learn from him and serve him. The problem is that, because “ISKCON” is the corporate title people see in the Çréla Prabhupäda’s books, they first go there to some listed temple. By doing so, instead of receiving the spiritual potency of an authorized Äcärya-centered movement, they undergo an experience that either makes them turn away altogether or converted into one of many institutional fanatics already in the thing.

There is no greater cause than working towards the goal of becoming a fully God-realized devotee. It is what everyone has been created for and what Çréla Prabhupäda desired for everyone. However, as it so happens, the leaders of “ISKCON” do not want anyone to even come close to becoming a God-realized devotee, because that would jeopardize their position at the top rung of their society. It has become an increasingly and exceedingly difficult task to find real Kåñëa Consciousness when “ISKCON” is doing its best to cover it. Thankfully, the INTERNET can play a role by opening doors for all those who are still adhering to the Truth presented by Çréla Prabhupäda.

There are numerous problems that plague the earth today. Terrorists, animal slaughter, global warming, and nuclear weapons are some of the obvious ones. However, preventing seekers from finding the Absolute Truth is by far the worst. Yet, there is still hope. In fact, it is foretold by Lord Caitanya that the planet will resoundingly manifest His Golden Age. In order to get the ball rolling, it depends upon Çréla Prabhupäda’s unchanged books and devotees following that çästra as it is.

The West is where people have become very attached to material comforts, which is conducive to watered-down spirituality. Only real Kåñëa Consciousness doesn’t make any deviation from the authorized guru, and only real Kåñëa Consciousness can make a difference. The global imbalance needs to be rectified, not just for the sake of preserving a now dying planet, but also to serve Çréla Prabhupäda in his mission of bringing Kåñëa Consciousness to the West. Due to the materialistic attitude that predominates Western society, many people will live futilely and then die without making a serious attempt to take the spiritual path. Yet, even one person who succeeds will make his mission worthwhile.

So what needs to be done for the Golden Age to flourish? The first step is to improve oneself in order to reach a level where one can approach a guru. From there, with enough service and devotion, one might even eventually receive the order to become guru. If enough people followed this method, the balance could be tipped in favor of spirituality, and this would mean a heightened consciousness vibrated across the globe in general.

Those initiated disciples who have had the great privilege to already be a true devotee of Çréla Prabhupäda are key elements in this. They are still connected to Çréla Prabhupäda in a way the rest cannot be, and, as such, they can offer guidance on becoming qualified enough to find a guru. In the meantime, there is no shame as having Çréla Prabhupäda as çikñä-guru. Even though his books contain enough knowledge for a follower of his to make it all the way back home to Godhead, one still needs guidance from an advanced devotee in order to understand those books:

“Without the instruction of a bona fide spiritual master one cannot progress in the spiritual science.”
Bhagavad Gétä, 13.8-12, purport

There are always impatient new devotees who don’t know better and believe that they can follow the new rules concocted by “ISKCON” leaders, which, in effect, means they can be allegedly initiated without having an authorized guru. Even though they are making a big mistake in this belief, and will suffer the consequences, it is like a child who only knows what his parents tells him. In any case, people need to come to their senses and approach a disciple of Çréla Prabhupäda who has not deviated from the çästra. One such disciple is Kailäsa Candra däsa. Do not think that Kailäsa’s teachings are any different from that of Çréla Prabhupäda, because he represents Çréla Prabhupäda without any deviation.

Devotees will find a deeper understanding from his teachings. In order to serve Lord Kåñëa, real devotees must gather together under the common banner of unchanged çästra and find a worthy leader. In doing so, they will begin to make a big change that the world needs, and that entails bringing down the G.B.C., the power node of “ISKCON.”

Many followers of so-called “ISKCON” have a misconception that Çréla Prabhupäda appointed the G.B.C. as his successor. This is simply untrue. The truth is that Çréla Prabhupäda did not appoint any successor, and he especially did not appoint a group of people like the G.B.C. to succeed him. For a limited time, they served their purpose as exemplary devotees who acted and made decisions on his behalf:

“G.B.C. men should not dictate very much, simply supervise and see that the standards are maintained.”
(Çréla Prabhupäda Letter, February 14th, 1972)

However, because of various difficulties he experienced with them, he wrote that he was dissatisfied with both their actions and their ever-increasing self-serving attitude:

“What will happen when I am not here, shall everything be spoiled by G.B.C.? So for the time being, let the G.B.C. activities be suspended until I thoroughly revise the whole procedure.”
(Çréla Prabhupäda Letter, April 11th, 1972)

“But the difficulty is that our G.B.C. men are falling victim to mäyä. Today, I trust this G.B.C., and tomorrow he will fall down. That is the difficulty. If the G.B.C. men are so flickering, then what to speak of the others. Unless this problem is solved, whatever we may resolve it will not be very useful.”
(Çréla Prabhupäda Letter, December 16th, 1974)

One of the problems is that many who see this are too afraid to do anything about it. Their fear is understandable: The G.B.C. and the institutional “gurus” (all seventy-seven of them) of “ISKCON” are despicable cheaters representing so-called spiritual life. Their demonic, institutional power affords them the strength to make one’s life a living hell (or even to end it). Yet, despite this real danger, it is of the utmost importance that these men be stopped, so the world can recognize Kåñëa Consciousness as it really is.

Material desire has infected the mis-leaders of “ISKCON.” That desire has taken over the former good judgment of these men. It has created a power-hungry train of thought that has allowed them to be misguided and to misguide; inevitably, they have transformed a genuine and authorized institution into a shadow of the real movement.

We must not stand by while these mis-leaders, who have given themselves the title “guru,” throw away the movement that Çréla Prabhupäda gave to the world. It is not a question of forgiveness, because that is not enough. Action must be taken, and the false gurus and their disciples must be stripped of their false prestige. Those devotees with good sense are urged to come forward and help Kailäsa Candra däsa and the Vaishnava Foundation expose the grievous errors of “ISKCON,” because, if the world is going to change, the wall that is now preventing that transformation from happening must first be torn down.

OM TAT SAT

2 comments

1 Basu Gopal Das { 12.05.16 at 02:46 }

How are we suppose to help?
What can we do besides following the siddhanta of Srila Prabhupada’s original teachings?

2 vfadmin { 12.19.16 at 11:40 }

After Srila Prabhupadas’ disappearance we are in difficult times, surrounded by all kind of deviations. In order to not be grossly and/or subtly polluted by these we need to study and understand where these pollutions are and what they are. This is what we are providing for serious seekers in Vaishnava Foundation under the guidance of Kailasa Candra prabhu. Please contact us on vfoutreach@gmail.com if you are willing to help our cause.

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