ISKCON France writes to IRM France


Back To Prabhupada, Issue 35, Spring 2012

The following letter is from Gaudamandala Das, who is the Temple President of ISKCON New Mayapura in France, and was written to the French IRM. Our response is interspersed between the author's statements below:

"I appreciate the fact that you are willing to establish Srila Prabhupada as he should be!"

Thank you for recognising the fact that all the IRM is trying to do is establish Srila Prabhupada "as he should be!" It is heartening that you have recognised the folly of other ISKCON leaders who falsely propagate nonsense that we are trying to destroy ISKCON. A good example was your fellow Temple President of ISKCON Bhaktivedanta Manor in the UK who claimed:

"IRM is seeking to destroy ISKCON based upon their own interpretation of Srila Prabhupada's instructions."
(Letter from Gauri Das, former ISKCON Temple President,18/12/2004)

However, it was Gauri Das who was himself later removed from his post after having been found guilty of contributing to harming the lives of children through physically abusing them:

"Gauri das is found to be responsible for inappropriate and excessive corporeal punishment, a behavior contrary to ISKCON policy and Vaisnava behavior."
(Official Statememt, ISKCON Central Office of Child Protection, 14/7/2008)

"The only thing is that you should do it your own way by having your own action and positive preaching."

Please rest assured that we are definitely having our "own action" in ensuring that no one is cheated - by spreading the truth about Srila Prabhupada's teachings being misrepresented. And helping people follow Srila Prabhupada correctly is the most positive preaching one can do, because, without it, there is no spiritual life!

"Srila Prabhupada is on the absolute platform and unless you have been empowered and personally instructed by him or his representatives, then this is not your duty to reform ISKCON!"

You will be happy to know that both Srila Prabhupada and those whom you accept as his representatives have endorsed what we are doing. Srila Prabhupada states:

"Unfortunately, when the acarya disappears, rogues and non-devotees take advantage and immediately begin to introduce unauthorized principles in the name of so-called svamis, yogis, philanthropists, welfare workers and so on. […] The acarya, the authorized representative of the Supreme Lord, establishes these principles, but when he disappears, things once again become disordered. The perfect disciples of the acarya try to relieve the situation by sincerely following the instructions of the spiritual master."
(Srimad-Bhagavatam, 4.28.48, purport)

Some of these "instructions of the spiritual master" which must be followed are:

"Our business is to point out who is not a saint."
(Srila Prabhupada Morning Walk, 10/4/1974)

"If a man is a thief and if people are warned that he is a thief, that is truth. Although sometimes the truth is unpalatable, one should not refrain from speaking it. Truthfulness demands that the facts be presented as they are for the benefit of others. That is the definition of truth."
(Bhagavad-gita As It Is, 10.4-5, purport)

And here is a statement from an ISKCON leader and guru whom you consider to be Srila Prabhupada's representative, who urges us to protest against those who are deviating in any way from Srila Prabhupada's instructions:

"Srila Prabhupada did say we should keep the Acarya in the center. […] If one of his followers, who happens to have the duty of initiating in his ISKCON society, undermines or minimizes the instructions found in his books and lectures then how can we expect a sincere ISKCON devotee not to protest, even if the one minimizing him happens to have given him initiation?"
(HH Trivikrama Swami, "Dandavats" website, 18/6/ 2007)

"Srila Prabhupada is taking care personally of "his ISKCON". If you do not believe this, then how valuable is your faith with him?"

Yes, he is taking care via inspiring devotees to take the necessary action where required. You believe this since you are a temple president who is taking practical action to take care of your temple, even though you also believe Srila Prabhupada is "taking care personally" of it. You are collecting donations, managing devotees, preaching, ensuring the buildings are maintained etc. You are not sleeping all day just expecting Srila Prabhupada "to take care personally". So you and I both believe that Srila Prabhupada is "taking care personally of his ISKCON" by inspiring the devotees to follow his orders.

"On the positive side, ISKCON is not the only Vaisnava branch and Srila Prabhupada is certainly happy with your effort to spread Krishna consciousness and not happy the way you point the faults repeatedly in his disciples! […] Unless you drop down this "finding fault mentality", you are not welcome to New Mayapura!"

Again, it is significant to note that you accept that we are spreading Krishna consciousness, rather than trying to "destroy ISKCON" as other ISKCON leaders have claimed. Of course, in faulting us for what you claim is unnecessary fault-finding, you yourself are pointing out what you believe are our faults. So how can you claim it is incorrect to point out the faults of another? That would be self-contradictory and hypocritical. Also, instead of trying to correct us for accurately pointing out where others are deviating, you should be correcting those who are actually deviating! It makes no sense to tolerate deviants while only taking action against those who are exposing the same deviants. These are the actions of those committed to covering up the truth - not those who wish to live the truth.

"Happy new 2012 in Srila Prabhupada service! Please forward this letter to Krishnakant prabhu!"

Thank you very much.

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