The GBC’s supreme hypocrisy – Part 2


Back to Prabhupada, Issue 28, Summer 2010
By Krishnakant

Below we see one ISKCON GBC voted-in guru, HH Gour Govinda Swami (“GGS”), reply to a direct question about whether he had received specific authorisation from Srila Prabhupada to initiate disciples for himself (and thereby act as a successor to Srila Prabhupada):

Devotee 2: “Do you have a letter from Prabhupada saying he wanted you to initiate disciples?”
Gour Govinda Swami: “Yes. He told me here, in that room where Prabhupada stayed in 1977. Prabhupada threw all the devotees out, called me in, and whispered in my ear, “Gour Govinda, this will be one of the best centres in ISKCON. Stay here. You should accept disciples, otherwise how will you manage?” I kept that in my heart until the first GBC meeting when they were selecting gurus. When I told them Prabhupada’s instructions, they wanted proof. So I shared the letter where Prabhupada wrote, “...under your leadership...” Still, they would not permit me. I had to fight."
(Darshan, Bhubaneswar, April 1989, published in My Revered Spiritual Master, chapter 7, p.58).

Whisper rejected - proof required

1. The GBC did not find GGS’s claim of a secret whisper believable. They wanted hard evidence of this alleged authorisation.

2. As “proof” of this alleged authorisation, GGS then presented the GBC with a letter he received from Srila Prabhupada’s secretary while he (GGS) was still a brahmachari disciple. The letter stated:

“At the same time there you can invite the local people and speak our philosophy by explaining the Purports of Srila Prabhupada’s books in Oriya Language; and gradually the local people will join. In this way we can develop a nice center in Orissa under your leadership. The idea is that the Hindi translating work will go on, the teaching of Hindi to the foreigners will go on, and at the same time we can open a center in Orissa under your leadership. This is Srila Prabhupad’s idea, and if you like it, you can come down to Mayapur, and we shall do the needful”.
(Letter from Brahmananda Swami [Personal Secretary] on behalf of Srila Prabhupada to Gour Gopalananda Das, October 7th, 1974. Approved “ACBS” [signature])

3. Seeing that the letter simply stated that an ISKCON centre would be opened “under the leadership” of GGS, with no mention of him being a guru, the GBC rejected GGS’s claim of being “authorised” and did not permit him to join their guru club.

GBC reject becomes GBC-appointed saint

4. Having initially rejected GGS as a guru, due to GGS not being authorised by Srila Prabhupada, the GBC later gave in and “empowered” GGS to guru status and later sainthood with the following resolutions:

“Gaura Govinda Swami is empowered to begin giving Diksa initiations, pending the approval of a 3-man committee appointed by the GBC Body.”
(GBC Resolution, February 28th, 1985).

“WHEREAS HH Gour Govinda Maharaja was a great devotee of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu and Srila Prabhupada [...] THEREFORE it is resolved that the disappearance day of HH Gour Govinda Maharaja be observed on the ISKCON GBC and BBT Calendar every year.”
(GBC Resolution 704, 1996)

Hypocrisy of the GBC

The above series of events simply highlights the sheer hypocrisy of the GBC in that they initially refused to appoint GGS as a guru due to his not being authorised by Srila Prabhupada, but later, due to political expediency, they were happy to “empower” him (and many dozen others) to guru status, even though the same lack of authorisation remained.

Please chant: Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna, Krishna, Hare, Hare,
Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama, Rama, Hare, Hare.
And be Happy!