Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Hindu-ized ISKCON is not what Srila Prabhupada wanted

Lines of Authority and Hindu Entanglement
On many occasions Srila Prabhupada instructed his disciples to preach to everyone and not just to Hindus. For example, concerning Africa he wrote:

"...So at the beginning Brahmananda was mixing only with those Indians, and they were giving profusely money, and there were so many plans for temple and deities. In this way he was neglecting to do the real work which was preaching to the black Africans. No one Hindu who is rich and living in foreign place is very much interested to become a devotee, it is show only, sentiment or custom. 

So I wanted that he should preach to the Africans and convert them to become devotees, that should be his real business, never mind wasting time with so many nonsense Indians. And as soon as he did as I instructed, immediately he has got some black devotees, and he has removed himself from the entanglement of the Hindus, and he is making good progress spreading Krsna Consciousness amongst the native citizens.... "

In present day ISKCON we see that many temple managers neglect to preach to everyone and instead focus on the Hindu community. If members of ISKCON voice their concerns to local authorities they are often chastised and even banned from temples. If they appeal to the GBC they are ignored. Even some sannyasis have been warned to remain quiet about the problem. The GBC is not protecting devotees who present Srila Prabhupada's instructions as they are. Instead, the GBC turns a blind eye and allows local managers to rule by force. Spiritual principles are ignored.

In the official GBC paper entitled "Harmonizing ISKCON's Lines of Authority" this type of management is criticised:

"In a spiritual society a manager cannot fufill his or her duty to manage simply by declaring and enforcing rules. The rules themselves must have a spiritual foundation, and their implementation and enforcement must be applied in accordance with vaisnava principles. Managers who serve with this understanding will generally carry the full weight of spiritual authority for those under their charge."

In the same paper it is explained that the GBC has "the mandate to organize the preaching movement so it is aligned with the instructions of Srila Prabhupada." Why then do the GBC allow temple managers to turn ISKCON temples into Hindu temples? Is that Srila Prabhupada's desire?

Also in the paper it is written that the GBC has "the responsibility to offer spiritual guidance (siksa) to the whole of ISKCON..." Is it not therefore the duty of the GBC to offer the members of ISKCON guidance on this issue? Rather than give guidance the GBC has chosen to remain silent.

When we consider these points the problem becomes clear: the GBC cannot simultaneously remain silent about the Hindu problem and follow its duties as laid down in the paper. For the GBC to follow the "Harmonizing ISKCON's Lines of Authority" paper it should:

1.Teach that Srila Prabhupada wanted Krsna consciousness to spread outside of the Hindu community.
2. Acknowledge that many temple managers are neglecting to do this and are therefore spiritually compromised.
3. Organize the preaching movement in alignment with Srila Prabhupada's desire that EVERYONE gets the opportunity to become Krsna conscious.

By remaining silent the GBC is agreeing to the Hinduization of ISKCON, is undermining their own authority, and is not protecting those who repeat Srila Prabhupada's words.

[PADA: Westerners are simply not going to accept the GBC's bogus gurus for the most part. So the ISKCON gurus are starting "Hindu cultural centers" mainly, to attract wealthy donations. That is also what the Gaudiya Matha deviants did. Srila Prabhupada called them a "showing the deity business." ys pd]

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