Let’s Stop Pretending


Back To Prabhupada, Issue 51, Spring 2016

The GBC claims that we must accept their voted-in diksa gurus, and condemns the IRM's position of accepting Srila Prabhupada as the diksa guru via the use of rtviks. Yet, the GBC continues to admit that their "diksa gurus" are really rtviks!

ISKCON's "rtviks"

We have given a number of examples in the past -- e.g. Umapati, Prabhavishnu, etc. -- demonstrating the GBC's approach when one of its ‘good as God' "diksa" gurus is forced to give up their position due to some illicit activity. This approach is two-fold:

a) Claim that the initiation received from such a person, even if they were deviating at the time, is valid, and that one is connected to Srila Prabhupada and the parampara (disciplic succession).

b) State that the disappearance of such a "diksa guru" from the devotees' lives does not matter, since Srila Prabhupada will provide "shelter" to them, thus allowing them to make spiritual progress.

However, these are the characteristics of a "rtvik" initiation, where the "fallen" person has really acted as a representative of the real diksa guru, Srila Prabhupada. And thus, the spiritual shelter and connection is provided by the diksa guru, Srila Prabhupada, rather than his representative conducting the formalities of the initiation.

More evidence

The GBC has now explained again how their "diksa" gurus are really rtviks, when announcing that yet another GBC "diksa" guru resigned due to some past illicit discretions. The extracts in the shaded boxes are from a message sent out on 24/3/16 by the GBC Executive Committee, about Gunagrahi Dasa Goswami (now Prabhu), with emphasis added.

Step 1 - The "guru" may have been deviating for a long time:

"he experienced severe anxiety out of guilt for spiritual difficulties that have lasted several decades [...] has stepped down from the sannyasa ashrama, as an initiating guru, and as co-zonal secretary"

Step 2 - But it does not matter as your initiation is still bona fide:

"since you were duly initiated in accordance with ISKCON law, you are in good spiritual standing."

Step 3 - It does not matter, because as long as you take shelter of and follow Srila Prabhupada's instructions, you will make spiritual progress:

"We encourage you, especially at this time, to take shelter of Srila Prabhupada and his instructions, [...] as long as you continue to take guidance from Srila Prabhupada and his sincere followers and remain strict in your spiritual practices, you will be safe and secure under Lord Krishna's protection."

Many of Srila Prabhupada's disciples never met him, and thus would have had their initiation conducted by someone else. And all of them have not had any contact with Srila Prabhupada for almost 40 years. Yet, the validity of their initiation is not considered negated if the person who was responsible for conducting their initiation is found to be a deviant. And all the while they would have been spiritually protected since they took shelter of, and followed, Srila Prabhupada's instructions. Therefore, the statements made in Steps 1, 2 and 3 outlined above, could just as equally have been made for a "deviant" representative who had conducted initiations for Srila Prabhupada's disciples. We therefore need to stop pretending that the current GBC "diksa gurus" are any more than glorified rtviks.

Bogus "foster guru"

We already saw in the previous article the quote from The Nectar of Devotion stating that the one whose spiritual shelter a person takes is the one who should be accepted as the diksa guru. Since Srila Prabhupada provides this guaranteed spiritual shelter in ISKCON, then he is the person from whom we must take initiation and accept as the diksa guru. But instead, one is expected to undergo the following charade:

1) First pick a GBC guru.
2) However, beware, as this person may also be a deviant, now or in the future.
3) But, if anything does go wrong, do not worry. Srila Prabhupada is there to step in and take care of you!

Hence, the GBC guru is like an unnecessary, concocted "foster guru", whom you must take, but if you are lucky and this "foster guru" ends up being exposed, then and only then, can you have the "real" guru Srila Prabhupada, who will never let you down. At this point, even a child will be asking: "but why can't we just have our real guru to begin with?!"

Thus, if we can take shelter of Srila Prabhupada later and make spiritual progress, then we can have him to begin with and always make spiritual progress. Especially when it is claimed that if the "foster guru" were to disappear from your life, it will not affect you spiritually. Hence, there is no need to have such a "foster" guru foisted on us, when we can just accept the real diksa guru Srila Prabhupada from the outset. This will also save the devastation that occurs when so many devotees discover that their GBC guru was not ‘as good as God' after all. But, unfortunately this foisting is done, just so ISKCON's leaders can satisfy their desire for PAD (Profit, Adoration and Distinction).



We have already established in previous publications that the GBC has no authority for their concocted guru system, since Srila Prabhupada remains as ISKCON's diksa guru. The GBC's contradictory rationalisation when one of their gurus "falls" highlights their guru system's concocted nature:

a) Srila Prabhupada is not enough to make spiritual progress, and so we must take one of their 70+ gurus.

b) When the GBC guru "falls", it does not matter, because Srila Prabhupada is enough to make spiritual progress!

Thus, the GBC rejects Srila Prabhupada and his rtvik system so that these leaders can have their unauthorised guru system, and so fulfil their PAD program. But then, the GBC is also more than happy to "borrow" Srila Prabhupada and elements of the rtvik system to prop up and justify its unauthorised guru system when it goes wrong, just so as to keep its PAD program alive. Basically, it's simply all about PAD!

Spiritual life should lead us to move from pretending and cheating to truthfulness and reality. Yet, the key vehicle for going back to Godhead and making spiritual advancement -- accepting a bona fide spiritual master -- continues in ISKCON to be based on pretending that a person functioning practically as a rtvik is actually a real diksa guru.


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