Dear Adri Dharan Prabhu,

Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

I’m sure you’ll agree that sastra says the conclusive rule when speaking on major principles of Vedic philosophy is that sadhus, gurus, and even founder acaryas must always strictly adhere to sastra.

This is profoundly verified as follows in Caitanya-caritamrita Madhya 20.352 purport:

"Srila Narottama dasa Thakura says, sadhu-sastra-guru- vakya, cittete kariya aikya. One should accept a thing as genuine by studying the words of saintly people, the spiritual master and the sastra. The actual centre is the sastra, the revealed scripture. If a spiritual master does not speak according to the revealed scripture, he is not to be accepted. Similarly, if a saintly person does not speak according to the sastra, he is not a saintly person. The sastra is the centre for all."

Sastra is the centre for all. This is clear, and I presume you agree. Therefore, until you verify that your posthumous ritvikism is ‘sastra centred’ it must be rejected as nonsense. The most alarming element of your ritvikism is that it puts both place marker you and our beloved Srila Prabhupada in the 'bogus position’ of rejecting sastra as the centre of all. Your ritvikism is not supported by even an iota of evidence from sastra or Srila Prabhupada.

Strictly adhering to guru, sadhu, and sastra simply means that gurus and sadhus must always refer to sastra when applying the ‘principles’ of Krishna consciousness. Gurus and sadhus need not refer to the principles of sastra when adjusting ‘certain’ time, place, and circumstance ‘details’.

Gurus and sadhus MUST always refer to the principles of sastra when adjusting time, place, and circumstance 'details'. If an adjustment flouts a principle, it is apasiddhantika or bogus. All adjustments of details must be in accordance with sastra principles.

Not even a Founder Acarya like Srila Prabhupada, can change ‘any principles’ of sastra. Principles of sastra always remain unchangeable. For instance a guru cannot instruct an initiated disciple ‘don’t chant any rounds’ because that is against a major principle of sastra. A guru or sadhu cannot say that Krishna is not the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and so on.

What makes ritvikism a dangerous concoction of a is that the directive therein blindly rebels against the fact that principles of sastra can never be changed. You argue that Srila Prabhupada was so powerful as a guru, sadhu, and Founder Acarya that he could change a major principle of Vedic philosophy that was firmly upheld even by Lord Krishna Himself! You imply that Srila Prabhupada has become greater than God!

Here is irrevocable proof that one must take diksa from a living spiritual master:

"Krsna, He is within our heart. Hrdy antah sthah. Therefore, as soon as we become a little inclined towards Krsna, then from within our heart He gives us favorable instruction so that we can gradually make progress, gradually. Krsna is the first spiritual master, and when we become more interested, then we have to go to a physical spiritual master. That is enjoined in the next verse. Tad viddhi pranipatena pariprasnena sevaya, upadeksyanti te jnanam jnaninas tattva- darsinah.

(SP Room Conversation, Rome, 23 May, 1974)

According to your ritvikism Srila Prabhupada contradicted himself here when he said,

"...then we have to go to a physical spiritual master."

Here is the critical question: Is the acceptance of a living diksa-guru an unchangeable major principle of Krishna consciousness? The answer is absolutely yes. The proof is the unbroken ‘Vaisnava tradition’ given in sastra which was followed unswervingly not only by every single acarya in our line but also by Lord Caitanya and Lord Krishna. Sastra considers ‘Vaisnava tradition’ as valid evidence and therefore this proof is irrefutable.

If an interpretation opposes the principles of scripture it can never be accepted, as verified by our sastra Caitanya-caritamrita Adi. 2.73:

"To such a misguided interpreter we may reply, ‘Why should you suggest such fallacious logic? An interpretation is never accepted as evidence if it opposes the principles of scripture.’"

The sastra principle that an interpretation is never accepted as evidence if it opposes the principles of scripture applies to all Srila Prabhupada’s interpretations too. Nowhere in all Srila Prabhupada’s vani will you find even a hint of an instance where he opposes the principles of sastra. But now after all these years you dig up a ‘hidden’ meaning from the 9 July letter implying that Srila Prabhupada opposed the principles of sastra. This wild inaccurate assertion is not only absurd but a great insult to Srila Prabhupada. You have wrongly concocted that Srila Prabhupada wanted to defy sastra by instigating a posthumous ritvik system that breaks the law of disciplic succession!

Here is more incontestable proof that ritvikism is completely wrong. His Divine Grace again clearly confirms in the following quote that he wanted the disciplic succession to continue after him and not stop with him. Srila Prabhupada clearly says here that he is eleventh in our line of disciplic succession from Lord Caitanya and that his disciples would be twelfth:

"So we have got this message from Krsna, from Caitanya Mahaprabhu, from the six Gosvamis, later on, Bhaktivinoda Thakura, Bhaktisiddhanta Thakura. And we are trying our bit also to distribute this knowledge. Now, tenth, eleventh, twelfth. My guru-maharaja is tenth from Caitanya Mahaprabhu, I’m eleventh, you are the twelfth."

(Los Angeles lecture, 18 May, 1972.)

When Srila Prabhupada says "I am eleventh, you are the twelfth" it is very clear that he wanted his disciples to continue the disciplic succession, not discontinue it. If Srila Prabhupada actually wanted to stop the parampara with him he would have said something like ‘I am eleventh, bas. No more after me.’ But he clearly couldn’t and didn’t. Srila Prabhupada wanted his disciples to be the twelfth generation of diksa-gurus, just like him, as per the unbroken Vaisnava tradition. In the above quote Srila Prabhupada sets the perfect example as the guru and sadhu and Founder Acarya of ISKCON by strictly adhering to a major principle of sastra.


Please prove directly and unequivocally without any evasion tactic whatsoever that your proposed system of ritvikism, a system of posthumous initiation that you declare Srila Prabhupada supposedly wanted after his departure, does not put Srila Prabhupada in a bogus position of contravening guru, sadhu, and sastra by breaking the law of disciplic succession?

Your servant,

Ajamila Dasa Adhikari