BY BHAJAHARI DAS
Feb 28 1999 - A response to 'Three Nasty Questions To Both Sides -From A Fence Sitter' by Jagat Candra das.
This is very easily answered. The July 9th letter is most certainly an 'order'. It was not that Srila Prabhupada simply issued an idea or a suggestion that the GBC could or could not follow at their whim. It was a directive
to be implemented immediately and without deliberation. Was it Srila Prabhupada's 'final' order on initiation (which is the IRM claim)? Unless the author can produce a later one, then by definition it must be his last or final order on this important issue. Therefore it is Srila Prabhupada's
'final order' on initiation. The author challenges once more.
The above is simply factually inaccurate. Srila Prabhupada did not 'personally' tend to every one of his thousands of initiated disciples. Many disciples never met Srila Prabhupada even once, what to speak of receive individual instruction. The whole reason Srila
Prabhupada set up ISKCON was to train up devotees in spiritual life. This 'personal', 'warm' one-on-one training would be done by Temple Presidents,
Sankirtan Leaders, Pujaris, Bhakta leaders etc etc. As long as a disciple strictly followed, Srila Prabhupada promised to take personal
responsibility for taking him back to Godhead. To my knowledge that offer still stands. There is absolutely no reason why this system could not have continued to this very day.
Only a few were needed, one for each designated zone. Their function was to oversee initiations so that the standards of each Temple were rigidly maintained. This was a responsible position, and hence went to prominent members of the society who had shown commitment
and managerial ability. Our question is "why did they stop doing the service they were personally given by Srila Prabhupada? "
The author has first claimed to be a fence sitter, but then makes an absolute statement- that neither side is absolute. That means he has already made the decision that neither side of the argument is correct since Vaisnava philosophy is always absolute. This is not
sitting on the fence; this is in effect rejecting both sides, and leaves the author open to the question 'so what did Srila Prabhupada order then?' Either Srila Prabhupada wanted to continue on as ISKCON's diksa guru, or he did not. Which is it? The author then suggests we weave together two
incorrect ideas in the hope of somehow arriving at a solution. This approach is highly speculative, and ignores the fact that Srila Prabhupada did issue clear instructions on how initiations should continue. Now for the author's own idea:
Not a lot to go on then for someone who is absolutely certain both sides are wrong. It seems everyone is very anxious to come up with their own new ideas, but few wish to follow the simple clear instructions Srila Prabhupada undeniably left us. What a shame! The
Perhaps these devotees should try reading 'The Final Order'. When they have please ask them to send their questions to our web site. The author concludes:
If there is one thing I learned from my Spiritual Master, it is never compromise the truth. Time to get off that fence and join us prabhuji.