Monday, January 21, 2013

Russian devotee replies to Shesha das

Blind Followers of the GBC Body


Jan 20, 2013 — MOSCOW, RUSSIA

Following is my sincere non-sentimental reply to the article by Shesha das, "Another Opinion About the GBC." My (and many others') opinions of the GBC body's failure, by an American Prabhupada disciple in ISKCON (early 70s) who has been living, preaching and working in Russia for over than 11 years now.

The Russian devotee Shesha das wrote: "I personally am deeply saddened by the attitude of Gadadhar das and GBC criticizers similar to him. Although some of the former or present GBC members sometimes are not up to the standard we are expecting from them, although somebody can think that today's gurus are authorized or not, it is thanks to the selfless service of many of Srila Prabhupada's disciples whom Gadadhar criticizes that today, me and many thousands of devotees in my country are having a chance to practice devotion to Krishna."

My reply to this is, Shesha das prabhu is criticizing Gadahar dasa and all the devotees who question and expose the deviations, compromises and changes to Srila Prabhupada's ISKCON, and he misses the whole point of what's gone wrong in ISKCON since our Spiritual Master left the planet. Shesha das, you speak without considering the grave compromises to ISKCON and even go so far as to say the GBC are sometimes not up to the standard given by Srila Prabhupada, and according to your mood, that's OK! Sorry, that's not OK. ISKCON has slipped in its standards/goals and that's WHY many devotees all over the world are upset and frustrated. Myself and Gadahar dasa included. You seem to avoid the serious issues and base your article on Russian sentimentality.

As long as they have made Russian devotees happy… For you, ignorance is bliss. What's gone on in Russia in preaching is NOT… I repeat strongly, NOT what's gone wrong with ISKCON in the rest of the world. You have No idea and don't want to know. That's ignorance, and it will destroy ISKCON if this sentimental attitude continues with devotees.

What nonsense talk, you are in ignorance and denial of the truth ,of the reality of a dysfunctional ISKCON / GBC Body and how they time after time have ignored their God brothers and sisters -- prabhus who saw deviations and changes and compromise in ISKCON all these decades.

Gadahar dasa is sincere and cares about ISKCON. Yet there are GBC men and women who are not willing to admit something is very wrong with ISKCON now. I fully realize the hard work of my Godbrothers in the former Soviet Union, but that's got nothing to do with the 'rubber-stamping' of gurus by the GBC and the sad condition it's in, in the West and other zones. The GBC Body has failed to protect ISKCON, and disobeyed Srila Prabhupada's direct instructions on so many things. They have allowed so many serious changes and compromises to ISKCON.

For Example:

1) The GBC have centralized ISKCON, disobeying Srila Prabhupada's exact instructions NOT to do this ever.

2) Allowed very disturbing illegal changes to Srila Prabhupada's books and the BBT. Book distribution and has gone way down and many temples just don't do Hari Nam anymore or bother making temple devotees.

3) Allowed paid salary devotees and green card devotees, and neglected the Bhakta Programs, neglected the Brahmacari and Brahmacarini ashrams in the USA and EU.

4) The GBC have allowed the Vrindavan Gurukula to become a karmi school (not Prabhupada's direction/vision).

5) Allowed drilling for natural gas on ISKCON land at New Vrindavan, despite Srila Prabhupada's order NEVER to allow this for karmi money. So many compromises for decades just for money, at the cost of watering down ISKCON's purity and goals.

6) For Indian money and support, many temples do questionable Hindu programs against Prabhupada's wishes, don't make local devotees and don't have local native managers. Plus introducing Feminism into ISKCON.

The List of deviations, compromises and changes is very long. I suggest you read past articles to get a reality check. You live in Russia. ISKCON is, as you said, a worldwide society. You, prabhu, suffer from limited tunnel vision and I suggest you wake up. You say Prabhupada's disciples did selfless service, despite the fact some GBC / Gurus have been unaccountable for thousands and millions of misspent laxmi in ISKCON over the years. What about the selfless service of the thousands of Prabhupada's disciples and followers who the GBC Body drove out of ISKCON, just because they spoke the truth about deviations of the GBC Body? The same GBC who have never fixed or addressed these issues properly in ISKCON… what's your reply to this fact?

You wrote: "What did these criticizers do for the people in our country? I personally first time hear their name! Did they pray for our spiritual well-being or come to our country undercover, so as not to be caught by secret police? Or maybe they red Bhagavatam and Gita two times a day for us plus kirtans, plus meetings, plus travel every third day to a new city?

Since the beginning of preaching in Russia there have being distributed many millions of Srila Prabhupada's books! there are temples in every city! There are many thousands of devotees! ISKCON long time is not only temples in USA, it is worldwide! Today's ISKCON is not society of only Srila Prabhupada's disciples, it is a worldwide movement of SRILA PRABHUPADA'S FOLLOWERS!"

Prabhu, if there were no preachers in the West, there would be no ISKCON in Russia, period. Living in Russia unfortunately (or fortunately), you all have been isolated from the terrible mistakes of the gurus and GBC body. That's called 'Ignorance'.

How do you know we don't appreciate the preaching in Russia? I have lived here over 11 years and I work, preach and have had a Russian devotee wife, who died in 2011. I appreciate and care about Prabhupada's ISKCON and I care about the Russian devotees very much. How do you know who appreciates Russian devotees, just because they question a dysfunctional GBC body and guru system? This makes no sense… it's just sentimental talk. How dare you speculate on any Sun writer's sincerity, since you seem limited to ONLY your experiences in Russia ISKCON.

Shesha das wrote: "Regarding your term "rubber stamped gurus", that is very offensive to me personally and many thousands of others. It is our practical experience that we have got real initiation into Bhakti. Enviers can say tons of nonsense, but our real practical experience shows opposite. I personally have seen countless examples of how Krishna showers His love and affection to devotees in our country, how He reciprocates with us. I have seen how bhaktas prayers are answered and how miracles happened practically every day. I know many devotees, initiated by ISKCON Gurus, who are deeply surrendered to our Lord Krishna and got serious realizations in spiritual life. We practically see that our process is working. People in our country got really introduced or initiated into the practice of devotional service to Sri Krishna by those whom you people are criticising. How dare you people to tell us that our gurus are rubber-stamped! It is we who choose them, not you. It is for us to decide what to do next."

No, you are wrong. The GBC "votes in" a guru (not you), so this is rubber - stamping possibly (most of the time) unqualified people (it's called POLITICS). Open your eyes. Voting in a guru was NOT Prabhupada's wishes, it's a concoction and has had disastrous results in ISKCON. Rubber-stamping of gurus is a serious flaw in ISKCON's guru system and the bogus Zonal system. It's never been addressed properly to this day. It has existed since 1978 and has NOT been fixed, and the GBC refuse to discuss it or fix it. That's the main problem of ISKCON, besides disobeying Srila Prabhupada and allowing changes in ISKCON.

Prabhavisnu Swami was a guru and now he is not a guru, so who is protecting and helping the Russian disciples and devotees? The answer is, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada and Lord KRSNA. Prabhavisnu das was seeing prostitutes in Bangkok, Thailand. If he was not exposed, probably he would be still doing it. What's the glory in this behavior? He is/was in the GBC power club and is addicted to it.

So who exactly is helping the Russian devotees? It's Srila Prabhupada and only him (through his sincere followers). We never said there are no gurus in ISKCON. We question the way it's been done… it needs to be reformed. Sentimentalism... I have seen this in Russia for many years now… Prabhupada is here and it is HE who is protecting and helping the Russian devotees in times of thick and thin -- NOT the GBC Body. Krsna has sent you Srila Prabhupada and He is NOT dead. Jiv Jago.

Shesha das wrote: "On the example of my friends I see that process is working even if your diksha guru is not up to standards! So far we are Srila Prabhupada's followers, we have all chances. We got same mantras that you people have, we are singing same bhajans, doing same sadhana and are reading same Srila Prabhupada's books! We are hearing every day same lectures by Srila Prabhupada and of his faithful followers. And when I see that somebody wants to deprive me of this blissful life, that somebody tries to destroy my spiritual achievements, it makes me furious.

Krishna sent to us exactly these devotees to teach us, NOT OTHERS. Who are we to judge His will! But opposite, we will thank Him and Srila Prabhupada for that and glorify Them! (O! Yes, for your consideration. It is interesting that the great Shyamananda Goswami, a direct follower of the Goswamis of Vrindavan and acharya in Orissa in later part of his life, got not one, but three wives. What about of his state of guruship?)."

Recently I personally spoke to one of ex-Guru and GBC for some areas in Russia and told him that I'm very much grateful for his service to my country and his support to me personally. I know for sure that this attitude is shared by most of his ex-disciples in my country and worldwide.
I'm not an idealist and know ISKCON inside out. I was Temple President and was removed. But I want all devotees who are reading this site to know another opinion, another attitude. ISKCON is not a society of ideal men. Quite opposite, it is society of un-ideal men, who are trying to live an ideal life. In our lifetime we most probably will never see ideal ISKCON, if it is at all possible in the age of Kali. But what we have now is already a miracle!
If you have a similar attitude please write to"

Yes, Srila Prabhupada is helping the Russian devotees, even if their guru is fallen. So the point is if the guru is weak and fallen, he was NEVER qualified to be a guru in the first place. He became a guru for the wrong reasons, and more will fall as the rubber-stamping guru system continues… and it's off. It's not following Srila Prabhupada's instructions... its GBC Politics. Purity is the Force… not voting someone in -- a Guru / GBC (club). That's the main point: rubber-stamping gurus (male or female) will not help anyone in ISKCON. It's failed. Guru is by qualification.

You are welcome to contact me at my email address: Don't be a blind follower of the GBC or any Guru… understand exactly what Srila Prabhupada wanted for ISKCON and his followers.

Your servant,
Jaya Madhava das (ACBSP)


  1. Thanks Jaya Madhava. You see, why Russians never learn English, won't read anything written in English? They experienced that the West is just the same as during the cold war. Cold war might be over for us but Russians still believe that we Westerners, especially Americans, are their enemy.
    And all those Westerners who manage ISKCON Russia they told them that they had to flee from US imperialism because it is demoniac. So Russian devotee see things totally different as we expect. They believe Krishna is on their side and Americans are punished by Krishna because they are spoiled sense enjoyers. They not only hear this from ISKCON leaders, basically Russia's government tells them the same. Therefore these devotees don't care. They go to Mayapur-Vrindavan festivals and figure, hey wait, there are no Western devotees, only Indians and Russians - no problem, we are the real devotees. Others are fake therefore they should suffer. No mercy. This is exactly how Russian devotees think about us Westerners.

  2. In truth, the article above by Jaya Madhava dasa is sad to see-there are no documents accompanying it. The tone is "looking down" on the devotee he replies to. What has not yet been uncovered by most is that the attempt to destroy Iskcon is a calculated attempt by liberals and communists. In their arguments they support a certain person today and totally vilify the same person tomorrow. Just as the new president in America speaks, or as communist leaders speak, they speak. You must agree with them or be destroyed. Jaya Madhava dasa makes no suggestions what should be correction for any specific problem-he only insists that everything has fallen apart and therefore?...we must cast away the disciples and the disciples of the disciples of Srila Prabhupada and become "followers" of Srila Prabhupada like the Christians do. "Oh Prabhupada, come into my heart." This is a concoction. Lord Krsna accepted a spiritual master and we must do also. Envy is very dangerous. The devotee who replied to Jaya Madhava das I thought gave a good comment. In this age of internet it is too easy to be fooled. We must remember there are whole governments that want this movement dead in its tracks. When Chaitanya Mahaprabhu inaugurat4d the sankirtan movement there was objection from the smarta brahmanas. If Jaya Madhava das can purify himself and preach and make disciples all over the world I am all for it. Ask him if he believes in "that"

  3. OK so we are supposed to accept a living guru, but you forgot who he is? This means, you have no living guru, you are bluffing. ys pd


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