A Return to Square One Manifesto

“Please rest assured that in this movement there is no question of imperfectness. This is a solid, genuine movement for the total spiritual rejuvenation of the human society. . . If one is actually serious to understand the problems of life, he will surely find the right answers in this movement.”

Letter to Jim Doody, Feb. 8, 1969

“We can adjust the Buddhists, Christians, and even the Mohammedans to our KC movement, so if the religious heads of these faiths try to understand our philosophy, certainly there will be great impetus in the matter of spiritual rejuvenation of the world.”

Letter to Syamasundara, Jun. 3, 1969

Recently there has been a breath of fresh air on the Sampradaya Sun with the provocative conversations with Guru Kripa prabhu as compiled by Bhakta das: http://www.harekrsna.com/sun/editorials/02-09/editorials3931.htm
The former Swami’s initial interview was hard-hitting, and I am in complete agreement with it:

“The money and society is yours. You can spend in any way but it is my duty to give you guidance as ever well wisher.”

Letter to Satsvarupa, Brahmananda, and other trustees
March 4, 1967 from San Francisco

When Guru Kripa prabhu says the GBC is the ultimate managerial authority of the society, but that it is not absolute, I can only agree wholeheartedly. The leaders of the society have acted like misleaders for the past thirty-plus years. They have run the society into the ground. They have destroyed the spiritual life of thousands of sincere devotees who were surrendered to the society while it was still bona fide.

Guru Kripa prabhu indirectly brings up this fact in his message, in relation to Harikesha’s reply (“What are you going to do to stop us?”). They could get away with all of this – and they are still getting away with so much nonsense – because His Divine Grace has allowed it to be so. It is their society. In other words, they also possess the ultimate mismanagerial “authority” to act according to their whims.

They have misused free will, they have done so many wrong things, and we can all see the ongoing result – which every year gets worse. However, we need to see more than this.

Guru Kripa prabhu’s article was very good, but it did not go far enough. If Ravindra Svarupa starts visiting his Honolulu center, is that going be a big step in the right direction? If the party men start inviting senior devotees to meet with them congregationally – rather than in some hideaway at Govardhana – is that really going to lay any solid foundation?

The real solution for the rejuvenation of the spiritual life for the entire human society cannot be restricted to hierarchy, buildings, properties, Deities, or bank accounts of some international superstructure. If these things were all still being dovetailed into the authorized process for spreading Krishna Consciousness, then they would be valuable. But they are not.

Instead, the myopic vision of the warped leaders of the society has instituted a kind of dogma, artificial power structure, a Western pragmatic process, and a Hinduization of the movement. All of this is based upon a vitiated tale of the past that has nothing to do with the real historical accuracy. That Guru Kripa prabhu has shone some light on what actually happened is most helpful and appreciated.

But now we need to go further. We need something new that is, nevertheless, completely authorized. We need to return to square one. In returning to the beginning (of the deviation), we need to apply all that we have learned and realized in order to implement a rejuvenated and bona fide Krishna Consciousness movement, in terms of time, place, and circumstances.

I am in the process of establishing a website – Return to Square One – just for this purpose. I invite all Sampradaya Sun readers to participate, so that together we can begin this long and difficult journey back to where the whole thing went off the rails – and propose viable rectifications and solutions. We need to put the Hare Krishna movement back on track.

We need to expose all of the historical prevarications, all of the myths, all of the distortions, all of the compromises, all of the unauthorized changes, and all of the corruptions. We need to put in their place all the genuine history, all the facts and related truths, all the relevant realities. We need to straighten the whole thing out, and, in order to do so, we need to become completely honest.

Guru Kripa prabhu mentioned the transcendental house he saw, the one that is there for him in the spiritual world. His Divine Grace Srila Prabhupada wants a house here in which the whole world can live. The current society cannot build it; instead they set fire to the one His Divine Grace built some decades ago. It’s time to deconstruct all that is wrong, and re-construct the movement as is was – and as it is supposed to be.

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