Art made by GBC emeritus SDG
BY: JAYA MADHAVA DAS (ACBSP)
The GBC Emeritus Award Farce: 'You make huge mistakes and offences and are rewarded by the GBC in ISKCON
[PADA: Satsvarupa is also a GBC emeritus? Which means what? His art is fine or -- not? Yep Rocana's "acharyas in training" program seems to be failing on all fronts?]
To Set The Record Straight…
Now in ISKCON, as a leader you can get rewarded with a GBC Emeritus award despite the fact that you have made grave mistakes as a leader, i.e., managed devotees and Srila Prabhupada's money, offended devotees, mission drifted in ISKCON. OK, fair enough, as the GBC are solely interested in PR rather than facts or truth, and are just an insiders club (with yes men).
I don't see the GBC issuing any Rewards of Appreciation or Apology to the thousands of devotees who have been banned, insulted, mistreated, abandoned or ignored by them and the leaders in ISKCON. No, not one time.
Thus we see white washing and cover-ups as a daily function of the GBC Body. I will address the latest farce of the GBC Emeritus Awards, given this year to two ex-GBC men. I have know both GBC men for many years and I have observed their good Krsna conscious service and their mistakes, some grave ones… mistakes not deserving of any pat on the back or reward.
Letter of Appreciation to Hari Vilas das (ACBSP)
GBC Resolution #319
It's a well know fact that Hari Vilas das has huge disrespect AND contempt for any god brothers or devotees who point out his mistakes in ISKCON or offences to devotees. The GBC are a dishonest and corrupted group now, and they allow fairy tales to be promoted about ex-GBCs or gurus. Honesty out, PR and cover-ups in, in ISKCON.
I lived in Seattle from 1990-1999 -- 10 years, and I know what was going on in there in ISKCON. I saw demigod worship in Seattle ISKCON in the 1990s and a huge drop in Krsna Consciousness standards. When I approached the GBC, who was Hari Vilas and asked, Hari Vilas prabhu, WHY? In anger he told me I was a motherf***er. That's 100% true. I was so shocked! This happened to me around 1998, and I left Seattle as I had no Krsna conscious shelter there anymore.
This is a GBC man worthy of a reward? He also banned and threatened ISKCON Arizona devotees with bad language and harsh treatments. This is verifiable with at least 25 Indian families who are banned from Arizona ISKCON. Their crime was not agreeing with Hari Vilas, so he attacked them. I also saw him exploit devotees for his Uncle Harry's business in Issaquah, Washington, paying them a measly slave wages of $3.00 an hour and exploiting them.
That's OK? Meanwhile in the 1990s, he was in the process of turning ISKCON Seattle into Hindu ISKCON, and to this day it's not following properly as Srila Prabhupada intended. He has totally mission drifted ISKCON Seattle into a Hindu Church for $$$. It's advertised as proper ISKCON, but it's sold out to the Indians for money.
Bhakti Vijana Goswami (former GBC for Moscow)
I have lived in Moscow since 2001. I first came here in 1999, and I know ISKCON here well.
I agree with the GBC that Bhakti Vijana Maharaj did much service to help the Russian yatra and he helped save it in times of severe crisis, but he made some wrong decisions too and the yatra suffers to this day because of his mistakes and bad decisions on Krsna Consciousness here.
Here are the facts as I see them, as a resident here since 1999-2000… Perfect Questions, No Answers on the Moscow Temple, and the land they bought to build a Temple on:
Bhakti Vijana Goswami's ideas for building a temple failed here. After they bought the land that the devotees collected money for, they found out it was only for zoned for farmland. They were cheated. Moreover, it sits unused for 7 years with no accountability by his disciples at all. They are like a separate, closed secret group. The land sits and no one can sell it or use it. Bad management… very bad.
Despite that, Maharaja's disciples hold onto it to build a so-called Education Center. My question is, is it authorized to collect huge sums of money for a failed temple and then without consultation with the devotees or the donors, decide to use it for something else? Is that honest? I don't think so. Moreover, ISKCON of Moscow has bought a dilapidated building which is an old Soviet Union factory, very old, and the inside is empty and needs huge renovation, which will cost millions of USA dollars. So why cant Bhakti Vijana Goswami give up that land outside Moscow and surrender it to Srila Prabhupada for His Moscow Temple? WHY NOT?
Bhakti Vijana Goswami allowed the selling of a concoction and distribution a New Age quasi Hare Krsna magazine in all Russia temples. It was printed by his friends. I have a copy of it and it's embarrassing. The magazine is not representing Srila Prabhupada properly.
Yet Bhakti Vijana Goswami told me to my face the last time I spoke to him (before he resigned as GBC) that my suggestion for a BTG for Russia would 'never happen'… never was his word. As a matter of fact, he told to my face that the world has changed, and ISKCON must change with the world. This statement shocked me! As a Prabhupada disciple, I'm fully aware that this is NOT Representing HDG Srila Prabhupada anymore. What he told me was the exact opposite of what Srila Prabhupada instructed to his disciples: DO NOT CHANGE ANYTHING in ISKCON. But Maharaj apparently thinks he knows better than Srila Prabhupada.
I was very disappointed at Bhakti Vijana Goswami's refusal to unite devotees under my idea to print BTG here. He refused to even talk about printing a Back to Godhead magazine for Russia, refused completely. My question: what kind of leader /GBC is that? Yet that Yoga magazine I saw being distributed in ISKCON Russia Temples and on Hari Nams was a New Age compromise and not a proper BBT book.
The Bottom line is, no way is it authorized to print and distribute such a wishy washy, New Age pseudo KC publication, talking about Tantric sex, homo with sex (pics), and mundane heath. A poor, indirect KC-oriented magazine being distributed in Srila Prabhupada's ISKCON Temples in Russia. I had to stop it. I went to Gopal Krishna Goswami and personally lodged a complaint to him (with magazine in tow). I had uncovered Mission Drift in Russia… bad drifting.
I saw many devotees attending mangala arotik in 1999, when I first came here to Moscow. Now, sadly, it's the opposite. Fewer devotees come to any temple programs anymore. On big occasions many devotees come to the Moscow Temple, but almost no senior men. Now everyone is 'too senior' or 'too advanced' to come to the Moscow Temple programs. Too many devotees want to be a leader or big shot now in ISKCON Russia.
TOO MUCH CHANGE = Too many devotees in ISKCON not following Srila Prabhupada's Instructions anymore. Too many independent devotees refuse to cooperate with the Moscow Temple. It's an epidemic in many ISKCON board-managed Temples now.
Bhakti Vijana Goswami started a Russian Council (or Board) to manage ISKCON Russia. Please show me where HDG Srila Prabhupada instructed to establish devotee councils to manage zones and temples. Where is it? That's not the way Srila Prabhupada wanted ISKCON to be managed, but they do this in Russia and all over ISKCON now. It's a complete concoction, a failure… disobeying Prabhupada's simple plan for Krsna Consciousness management. Guru (Prabhupada), GBC, Temple President, that's it.
Therefore instead of cooperation and unity in Russia (at least in Moscow ISKCON), we see devotees wanting to be independent of the authorities and be their own boss or wanna-be guru. I'm told the Bhakti Vriksha leader here has plans to open another temple without cooperating with the Moscow Temple. That's nothing new, since neither he or his followers come to the Moscow Temple. Nor do his many hundreds of Bhakta Vriksha members even come to the Temple anymore! Not even for Gaura Purnima or Prabhupada's Appearance days do they come! They are a no-show… where are they? Are they too good or important to go to the Temple once or twice a year? Why won't they serve the Temple humbly? At least as an example? Nope!
So to put it mildly, Bhakti Vijana Goswami delegated too many devotees to do their own thing here and as a result the Moscow Temple now suffers, financially, spiritually, manpower wise. When the Temple moved to its present location (Polojayskaya), the brahmacaris started their own temple and refuse to come to or cooperate with Moscow ISKCON… and so on and so forth. You get the picture?
As the saying goes, "Too many cooks spoil the soup". Everyone wants to be a leader, but to be a good leader first you MUST be a good humble follower. I guess they missed that part of the instructions on how to become a leader in ISKCON.
The fact is, Bhakti Vijana Goswami left being GBC here in Moscow with a lot of loose ends and problems behind him. He created an atmosphere of unrealistic independent managers who show no cooperation, no accountability. The yatra has split up here into pieces.
That's what I have seen. I must tell the truth even if the GBC Body won't, and just broadcast their usual PR and lies.
In closing, if the GBC Body doesn't become honest and get its act together, we will see more GBC men fall, more gurus fall, and more confusion and disunity in ISKCON. And more the next year, and the year after, on and on… More PR, more cover-ups, more white-washing of the truth in ISKCON. If the GBC don't become a real GBC, as Srila Prabhupada wanted, we can expect more of the same: show-bottle rewards and unaccountability in ISKCON.