dasa - William Deadwyler
Letter to the GBC
Regarding the Assault of a Devotee by Ravindra Svarupa dasa
BY: MAHAPURUSHA DASA
With deep regret
and after much deliberation, I must sadly report the vicious attack of a female
devotee by Ravindra Svarupa dasa. The incident occurred over a month ago and I
was personally informed of the attack by the victim. Several other congregants
were also informed of the attack by the victim. He has also "bragged"
about the incident to several others, which is, in itself, deeply disturbing and
suggests severe moral and ethical degradation. The devotee was assaulted in the
pujari room as she was about to perform Deity service.
The devotee was
running late for the offering and Ravindra Svarupa dasa verbally attacked her,
screaming at her she was a terrible and offensive devotee and then violently kicked
her in her buttocks. The victim has been obviously terrified. I and several other
senior devotees have been working to help her. But after lengthy discussions and
soul searching, we feel that the only way to address the issue is to make it public.
We are demanding
the immediate resignation of Ravindra Svarupa dasa from all positions of authority
within ISKCON in accordance to ISKCON's zero tolerance abuse policy. This is obviously
a severe abuse of power, especially considering that the devotee is one of his
disciples. As a professional educator, I have a professional duty to report all
incidences of abuse. If this were to happen at my job, he would be arrested, fired
and promptly sued. I feel that not only should Ravindra Svarupa be subjected to
the same level of accountability as anyone else, but being in a position of spiritual
leadership makes the incident even worse. I am also planning on contacting the
police as well as social services.
This incident has
weighed heavily on my heart. Being an initiated disciple of Ravindra Svarupa makes
this letter even harder to write. I have, unfortunately, witnessed many examples
of abuse of power by Ravindra Svarupa throughout my years of association. I do
not believe in any way that this incident or any others represent the character
of a balanced person, what to speak about the actions of a Vaishnava Guru.
I am writing this
letter publicly to induce the GBC to act appropriately, swiftly and thoroughly,
especially considering ISKCON's previous problems of abuse. The handling of this
incident is being watched carefully by other senior devotees as well and I am
also willing to report this incident to the general press. Nothing less than his
immediate resignation and removal from ISKCON leadership and properties will be
I am also writing
this letter to inform my dear Godbrothers and Godsisters. I feel they have a right
to know about this incident and have the right to make up their own minds about
how to personally deal with it. I am also writing this letter as a personal plea
to the devotee community to help this individual victim. She is an amazing devotee
and absolutely does not deserve to be treated like this. She is living in total
fear of retribution and has been systematically harassed and threatened with being
thrown out. Being a full time servant of Krishna, she has very little material
resources and I am imploring the community of devotees to help her.
I am praying that
the Lord will touch Ravindra Svarupa's heart and reveal to him the need of total
repentance and contrition. The fact that he gloated about the incident is so horrifying
to me. I have personally forgiven him for the horrible things he perpetrated against
me. The subject of these actions are outside the scope of this letter. One of
the hardest things is to forgive someone who doesn't feel bad about what they
have done. I believe that once the Lord reveals the heaviness of the material
world alongside His own Magnificence and Glory, it is easy to see how anyone could
do anything. Especially considering when power, money and prestige are involved.
We are all ultimately
"victims" of the material energy and those who transgress the Laws of
Nature and God unfortunately suffer more personally than any suffering they cause
others. I believe that everyone, what to speak of Srila Prabhupada's disciples,
are there to teach us what to do and also what NOT to do. Unfortunately, Ravindra
Svarupa dasa has chosen to teach me the heart wrenching lessons of the latter.
Ravindra Svarupa's Statement
BY: ROCANA DASA
Jan 4, 2007 USA (SUN) — We were interested
to read the response
from Ravindra Svarupa to recent Sun articles regarding
Radhanatha Swami and the New Vrindaban murders.
explains the philosophical technicalities of the pedophile guru lineage.
"He used to be a bonafide guru, but now that he
is a pedophile we have voted him out as a guru."
For myself and many
other longtime members of ISKCON, Ravindra
Svarupa's article exemplified the mood of the ISKCON GBC. His response was practically
a cookie-cutter product of the Zonal Acarya era mood. Anyone who dares to question
the leaders is immediately charged as being a "fault-finder", and is often threatened
with ejection from the community of devotees-in-good-standing. If the challenge
hits a real nerve, the devotee who dared to raise the question is pounced upon
by one of the literary appointees of the GBC. Like Hridayananda, Ravindra Svarupa
performs like a literary 'hired gun' for ISKCON. When ISKCON's hot button is hit,
these two personalities are often called upon to respond, crushing the challengers
with their philosophical brilliance.
Let's keep in mind
the various ISKCON leaders who have fallen down and committed horrendous activities
under the guiding hand of the GBC. In addition to Kirtanananda, there's been Jayatirtha,
Hansadutta, Rameswar, Bhagavan, and Harikesh, to name just a few of the bigger
ones. Prior to the "official falldowns" of these individuals, if anyone had questioned
or complained, as many are doing today about Radhanatha and other leaders from
the New Vrindaban diaspora, they would have instantly been shot down, just as
Ravindra Svarupa is attempting to shoot down Giri-nayaka and Janmastami das today.
In fact, it's ironic
that Ravindra Svarupa is writing this letter, considering the fact that he likes
to tout himself as being the head of the 'reform movement', which helped to officially
dismantle the Zonal Acarya system. All the things he says about people who find
fault in others also applied to him during his participation as a reformer in
the mid-1980's. At that time the limelight was on him, and the GBC were saying
similar things about him that he's now saying about other devotees. He tells us
that his memory is very sharp when it comes to the New Vrindaban murder trial
that took place 15 years ago, but it obviously isn't so sharp when it comes to
remembering the reform era. He now pats himself on the back for his bold actions
in those days, and apparently doesn't see the hypocrisy of his situation.
According to Ravindra
Svarupa, Mr. Stein concluded that Radhanatha was a very saintly person, because
"everyone says so". But who is that 'everyone'? The residents of New Vrindaban,
who were so bewildered they didn't know they were under the direction of a violent
criminal and pedophile for many years? Or was 'everyone' the ISKCON leadership,
who had a vested interest in Radhanatha not being implicated in the murders?
We're supposed to
accept Mr. Stein's authority as evidence of Radhanatha Swami's character. Ravindra
Svarupa says ISKCON's cooperation with law enforcement on the murder investigation
began in 1987. The situation wound up in 1993 with the Winnebago Crisis. Let's
not forget that during the period of time when Radhanatha was fully a part of
the murder investigation and aftermath, which spans almost a decade, Radhanatha
was considered persona non grata within ISKCON. In fact, his preaching work in
India, primarily in Bombay, was really looked down upon by the GBC, and especially
by those who were preaching in Srila Prabhupada's temple at Juhu Beach in Bombay.
So for Ravindra Svarupa to now say that Radhanatha was a saintly person on the
basis of Michael Stein's observations at that time completely contradicts ISKCON's
own position on Radhanatha Swami. Ravindra Svarupa's statements in this regard
are clearly tainted by political considerations.
states that Michael Stein had concluded based on his investigations that Radhanatha
Swami was not implicated in any of the criminal activities at New Vrindaban. Yet
in today's Sun article, Factual
Errors by "Anonymous", who appears to have had a lot to do with the trial,
we hear a different story. This individual was directly involved with both the
attorneys and the FBI, and he testified in court himself. This is his statement:
"The U.S. Attorney
and the FBI guys I spoke to were convinced there were other “fish”
who escaped their nets in connection with this case"
In Ravindra Svarupa's
article, he indicates that he remembers exactly what he said to Mr. Stein and
to Tirtha. Of course, this is likely just a literary technique employed to make
him look important and crucial to the whole circumstance at that point in time.
to see how Ravindra Svarupa slyly insinuates that Radhanatha was "difficult",
without coming right out and saying what everyone knew to be true at the time
- that Radhanatha was hiding out in India. The FBI had to pressure him with the
threat that he could never safely come back to the U.S. unless he showed up for
a 'meeting' with them. Ravindra Svarupa covers himself on the "meeting" point
by adding "or maybe an interrogation". Yes, maybe. There's no question that it
was an interrogation, and Radhanatha was considered to be implicated at the time.
We've already heard from persons directly involved in the murders that he was
implicated -- that he was personally involved. But according to Ravindra Svarupa,
we're supposed to have faith in Radhanatha Swami's saintliness based on what Mr.
Stein supposedly had to say, ignoring the recent statements of people who were
directly involved in the murder, who say it was Radhanatha that orchestrated Sulocana's
It's also important
to note the genesis of these conspiracy allegations. This was obviously not a
staged attack on Radhanatha. These disclosures came as the result of what was
clearly a spontaneous thread of discussion - what the court would call "excited
utterances". One after another, individuals who have apparently had little connection
to one another for many years have come forward with this information. So for
anyone to casually brush that aside on the merit of Ravindra Svarupa's arguments
would be questionable.
tells us that Mr. Stein accepted a plea bargain, as though that were another indication
of Radhanatha's innocence. But in today's Factual Errors article, a very
different scenario is provided.
We should also remember
how the U.S. judicial system works. Decisions on how and when to prosecute are
not made simply based on findings of innocence or guilt. Every day, government
prosecutors come up against America's toughest lawyers, which ultimately means
that it's not always financially expedient to carry on prosecutions beyond a certain
point. Like any businessman, the judicial officers weigh the cost-benefit ratios
of each case. That's how it works. You hire a good lawyer and the prosecutors
have to consider the economic factors -- how much time, money and personal reputation
is at stake, and what are the risks vs. the potential benefits? Let's also keep
in mind that Radhanatha did not simply rely on devotee legal representation, believing
his innocence would protect him. As Janmastami dasa points out, Radhanatha arranged
to be protected by a high-powered lawyer.
states that "The government is not going to reopen its case". How is it that he
has such absolute information about what the law enforcement officials will and
will not do? According to the comments above, they did believe that other "fish"
had escaped their nets. It's not that they had investigated and they felt totally
confident that they had achieved and executed pure justice, the way Ravindra Svarupa
is making it out to be. While he tries to reassure the rest of the movement that
this case will never be opened again, he has absolutely no guarantee of this at
all. It's just wishful thinking on his part, and dishonesty, because it can't
be known to be true.
All it would take
for this case to be reopened is for Tirtha to turn on Radhanatha, and for individuals
like Janmastami dasa and others with direct information and evidence, who never
came forward during the investigation, to now publicly disclose what they know.
All it takes is for the right new pieces to fall into place. Add to that the possibilities
of political expedience, wherein the right political circumstances present themselves:
somebody wants to be elected, or appointed, or wants to prevent someone from being
elected. This case could be leveraged by someone in the system. Thanks to new
technologies like DNA testing, cold cases are being re-opened all the time now.
In fact, thanks to American television, cold cases have actually become trendy.
While Ravindra Svarupa
states time and again in his article how much faith he has in the American legal
system and their prosecuting attorneys, he apparently has no faith whatsoever
in anyone who is concerned about this whole situation, and dares to question the
GBC about it. Such persons are only interested in causing "distress, agitation,
and misgivings". That's their only motive. At the same time, Ravindra Svarupa
makes Tirtha Prabhu out to be practically a saintly person. His narration of events
during the investigation, and Tirtha's intimate conversations with him, almost
sound as though he's acting as Tirtha's guru, giving him all good advice. Now
he tells us that Tirtha dasa is very wonderful, because he's taken shelter of
the Holy Name. Never mind that Janmastami dasa and Giri-nayaka dasa have also
taken shelter of the Holy Name. That comparison doesn't matter - all that matters
is that one prabhu doesn't challenge the ISKCON authorities, while the other two
And while Ravindra
Svarupa is so moved by the importance of Tirtha having taken shelter of the Holy
Name, we note that in the midst of the crisis, when Tirtha phoned him for help,
Ravindra Svarupa's advice then wasn't that he simply take shelter of the Holy
Name and pray to Krsna and Srila Prabhupada. He advised him to just cooperate
with the prosecuting attorney, emphatically saying that "truth is the best prayascitta".
Not chanting the Holy Name or praying to Krsna in his heart, but cooperating with
the government authorities and turning against Kirtanananda, despite the fact
that Tirtha said it would be physically dangerous to himself to do so.
goes on to describe how he personally met Tirtha dasa. Now how is it that he took
the time, energy and obviously we assume some of ISKCON's funds, to go and visit
Tirtha and observe how he was healing from his wounds after being attacked? He
tells us the story of Tirtha's having said "I belong in here", in prison for my
crimes. Ravindra Svarupa concludes that Tirtha had reached such a high level of
purification on the basis of this statement that he deserved all forgiveness from
Krsna for killing two devotees. Then he goes into using our philosophy to essentially
justify protecting Radhanatha and, of course, ISKCON's prison ministry.
It would be interesting
to know just how many times Ravindra Svarupa has visited "Tirtha Prabhu/master"
in jail. It must have been quite often, because according to him, Tirtha "clearly
exhibits the symptoms of one advanced in sincerely cultivating the Holy Name."
So what are these symptoms? Tirtha can't give up everything, because the State
took it all away, so he has nothing to renounce. Is this a great solution for
anyone who wants to make advancement in Krsna consciousness - to be sent to jail?
It is also fascinating
to note the degree of direct, personal support Ravindra Svarupa offers to Radhanatha
Swami in his article. Basically, he only states that Radhanatha "clearly exhibits
the symptoms of one advanced in sincerely cultivating the Holy Name." That's the
extent of the detail Ravindra Svarupa provides in his personal testimony.
As part of his so-called
Vaisnava "siddhantic explanation" of how great Tirtha is, Ravindra Svarupa tells
us that Tirtha personifies how all devotees should approach Krsna. Yet we heard
directly from Tirtha just a few days ago, and got a very different impression.
Here's the person who's supposedly chanting such beautiful rounds, yet the letter
he wrote doesn't indicate that mood one little bit. He didn't forgive Janmastami,
and he didn't communicate any indication of remorse -- all the symptoms that Ravindra
Svarupa is projecting onto this person. In his letter, Tirtha calls Janmastami
a "blasphemer", which is certainly a case of pot-kettle-black. Tirtha admits that
he shielded Janmastami, and given the fact that to this very day, Tirtha has not
come clean and disclosed these circumstances to the public, let alone to the law
enforcement officials, we can see that he is not yet remediated into the honest,
blissfully chanting devotee Ravindra Svarupa would make him out to be. After attempting
to defame him as a marijuana grower, Tirtha goes on to outright threaten Janmastami,
suggesting that he could make arrangements to have Janmastami "interviewed" by
the U.S. Attorneys Office if he continues his "moronic rantings". Does this sound
to you like the mood of a humble, repentant Vaisnava simply absorbing himself
in the Holy Name as he sits out his prison sentence?
obviously thinks so - enough so that he's willing to characterize Janmastami and
Giri-nayaka prabhus as having 'wandered into the quicksand swamp of fault-finding'
for having raised questions and disclosed facts about the case. Ravindra Svarupa
clearly infers that Janmastami and Giri-nayaka are like the worst of the full-time
fault-finders, members of the Ramacandra Puri sampradaya. Their only motive is
to cause havoc within ISKCON, and this is an indication of some deep rooted mentality
wherein they don't want to purify themselves. So they can just go on fault-finding
all those pure souls like himself, and the GBC, and of course, Radhanatha Swami.
In his attempts
to smash the ISKCON critic, Ravindra Svarupa goes so far as to describe Giri-Nayaka
dasa in the same breath as even Janmastami, who by his own admission was implicated
in the murders. Yet Giri-nayaka's only fault was that he asked the GBC to respond
to the allegations against Radhanatha, all the while stating that he had not personally
taken sides and was simply interested in understanding the GBC's position on the
matter. By doing so, he unfortunately "fell into the quicksand". Ravindra Svarupa
is essentially saying that fault-finding the GBC is worse than killing devotees
and going to jail for life.
For Ravindra Svarupa
to use the Holy Name as a weapon, and to claim that the Holy Name will not act
on such fault-finding persons, is most questionable. He is essentially using the
ultimate weapon against devotees. And this is his proclamation, as such a great
spiritual leader -- that the Holy Name is not going to work for anyone who fault-finds
the most telling statement of all in Ravindra Svarupa's article is the last, wherein
he essentially threatens Janmastami and Giri-nayaka with death. Having
already clearly told them that they were simply fault-finders, he now reminds
them that by falling further into the quicksand swamp, they may be falling into
mortal danger. He doesn't suggest that their spiritual lives will be in danger…
he uses the term "mortal danger", which means the death of their physical bodies.
So this is really a threat. On this note, he signs off by calling himself a "fallen
Svarupa - GBC Front Man?
BY: GADADHARA DASA
Over the last 22+ years, Ravindra Svarupa has played a dominant front man role
on the GBC. The reason is that he has bought into the game of dominant crooks
in ISKCON leadership. Thus the crooks are more than happy to have Ravindra Svarupa
in front defending them and washing their dirty laundry.
was already on the front line during 1988 to 1994 in North American GBC and Temple
President's meetings. Then came the Gopi Bhava game of Tamal Krishna and his buddies
in 1995, the explosion of Rittvik and poison issues in 1997, and the fall of Harikesa.
Thus each of these cases has added to his dominant role.
Next came Naveen
Krishna's stand that Srila Prabhupada was poisoned and Ravindra's counter declaration
that Naveen was trying to poison the GBC into thinking that Srila Prabhupada was
poisoned. That is when Ravindra Svarupa and Tamal Krishna became even closer.
It is important
that Ravindra Svarupa be brought into the crosshairs in regard to what has taken
place since the erection of the Multiple Acarya Successor System (MASS) in 1986.
to Prabhupada magazine quoted Jayadvaita Swami, who was complaining against the
GBC, and that may mean complaining against Ravindra Swarup also. On the other
hand, However, Jayadvaita Swami is with the GBC in regards to the MASS.
writes in his article in regard to Ravindra Svarupa and ISKCON leaders in general:
to the seminar from Ravindra Svarupa Prabhu, explaining his pop-psychology views
on fault-finding and criticizing. It is interesting, how Ravindra Svarupa's views
are exactly the same as Mahatma Prabhu's, or Sita-pati prabhu's. It is clear,
that those views are accepted in the ISKCON institution as standard. We all know
examples with fingers pointing forth and back, and similar. Numerous examples
telling us to be quiet. And always followed by warning of eternal damnation through
The GBC have worked
on cover-up methods for 30 years. They implanted certain ideas into our brain,
and we allowed them to do so. Now they keep serving us other nonsense, such as
"The Secret" pop-psycho win-all method presented by the GBC at the New
Vrindaban 2007 meeting. Clearly we should find no fault in such nonsense.
The last 30 years
were in light of their ideas, and those questioning their decisions and actions
were labeled as fault-finding Vaisnavas, and even as Ramacandra Puri fault-finding
ideas of anti-fault-finding, and they used all that was necessary to make sure
that everybody must submit to their ideas -- their way or the highway. They did
it perfectly, as they wanted to do it. Nobody stood in their way, all opposition
was removed. But observe the results. 30 years after Srila Prabhupada's vision
of all other religions being gone, the only religion gone is GBC religion. Well,
judging by the results, they must have done something wrong! "
Let us call for
devotees all over the world to shed light on Ravindra Svarupa dasa.
From: (Stephen Voith)
To: firstname.lastname@example.org (Pratyatosa
Subject: Yes, I quite agree!
Date: Sat, 10 Apr 1999 23:27:19 -0400 (EDT)
Dear Prabhu, thank you for the insight!
You have stated the obvious: 'Tis folly to be wise where ISGONE is bliss. (ISGONE:
Int'l Society for Godless Ostriches Nearing Extinction). Anyway, don't waste valuable
time trying to convince the Prabhupada-killers. How much success could Christ's
followers have made preaching to avid (rabid?) supporters of Judas (& friends,
family, sympathizers, well-wishers, apologists, sociologists, etc.)? Know what
I mean? These guys have rationalized torturing their (former) gurudeva to death,
so what won't such madmen proclaim?
Hey, I explained years ago that the main murderer
of Srila Prabhupada and his movement, one Ravindra Svarupa dasa (aka Rabidog Svarupa,
aka Robin Braindeadrotweiler Svarupa Prabhu, aka Ravandraksa Svarupa, etc., etc.)
had not only harbored dangerous child rapists at centers under his (inauspicious)
auspices (such as child-murderer, Murli (surly) Vadaka (aka Murlivadakoit), Hans
Bickel, etc., but that this raksasa had also embezzled mucho moula from the farm,
cows, cowherds, Prabhupada, etc. and had also allowed cows to be horrbly neglected
and abused, and his and their explanation (three year later) was NOT a denial
(of the facts), but simply a rationalization.
Criminals always act this way. You catch them, expose them, bring in incontrovertible
proof about their egregious plots, schemes and conspiracies, and when they can
no longer avoid the public trouncing, they finally patheically admit it (what
EVERYBODY FULLY KNOWS AND BELIEVES BY NOW!), and then go on to justify it--or,
as in the case of the well-publicized Sulocana murder (Monkey On a Stick), where
the press and law enforcement are heavily breathing down their backs---then they
forge a phony reform, sanitize the whole mess by some political double speak and
superficial repentence act, and then, when they perceive the heat is no longer
on 'em, they go back to busness as usuaL AS WAS DONE BY RAVINDRA HIMSELF in "Monkey
On a Stick". He was their big, big reformer to go to bat for Tamal Gunaweed,
Satsvaruppa, and other gay, homo former LSD buddies... If you want a good look
at their real bankrupt nature, I have a videoclip taken at Rathayatra, NY, 1997,
and for over 6 minutes RS is silent as I ask him about his false reforms, child
molest coverups, embezzlements, guru murder, etc. in front of hundreds of people,
and no shame, no reply, no response, except typical smirking, which intensified
the more I dwelled on the murder of Srila Prabhupada, and coverup thereof...
As far as your point about the demons (false gurus) should worship the gurucoolies,
and not vice versa, well that's true if the children have the right conception.
And it was certainly true when they were young and pure. Even Srila Prabhupada
said that--and he said it was the others responsibility to ensure that they (GKs)
remain pure, and grow up with the correct conception (ie. Prabhupada/Krishna consciousness!)
Anyway, there exist a million examples of precedents where the demons and raksasas
insist that the devatas worship themselves, such as Hiranyakasipu subjugating
the demigods and attempting to enforce his own worship on to his son, Prahlada
M. Or, of course Kamsa wanted to stop sacrifices, and hinder worship of the demigods,
and Ravana wanted to steal heaven away from the devas, etc. so naturally the envious
guru-killing, child-swallowing raksasas of molestcon want to first abuse, kill,
torture, even cannibalize the poor children, and then blame them for their own
atrocities, and demand full worship also. what better proof exists of their demonhood?!
know what I mean? Please read SP's last letter to Arundhati dd, dated 30 July,
'72. therein His Divine Grace explains that the children are in fact suppposed
to be worshipped by their 'superiors'; that's becuse the children THEMSELVES are
"Vaikuntha chidren", and not the other way around.
Get it? And, it's obvious, moreover, that if the guys (and gals) had followed
SP's instruction, they too could have become redeemed as Vaikuntha children (quote
unquote), and the fact that they did the opposite of "worship" these
fine, God-sent souls, proves your point that they are not qualified tosit in the
seat of guru or intrctor guru, or any position of respectability at all. Bhagavad
Gita states : "The learned and GENTLE sage sees with equal vision..."
learned always carries with it the responsibility of GENTLE also; otherwise such
knowledge (and possessors thereof) become the most dangerous and calamitous thing
in society ("milk touched by lips of serpants...") Recall please the
pastime of Lord Balarama chastising the father of Sri Suta Gosvami (Romaharsana
Suta), when the latter was puffed up before the All-merciful Lord. Lord Balarama
admitted at that time that He and His brother had advented themselves just to
rid the world of such dangerous persons who pose as learned but don't display
the concommitant quality of GENTLENESS...
Ys, Sanatana dasa
From: Alex J.
Date: Mon, 19 Oct 2009 10:03:54 +0000
Subject: "...the rare mystic power to be two persons at the same time."
I read the
article on Sampradaya Sun, I thought about the sort of rationalizations
and self-talk that might take place in the mind of someone who, for example,
considers themselves a follower of Hridayananda. I had an experience
with a follower of Hridayananda, some years back, that I found quite painful.
I still think about it, on and off. And it does not feel fully resolved
to me. Though I feel better about having finally honestly confronted the
person, some time ago.
As I think back to that experience, with that person, and to the pain
I felt, I wonder about the sort of inner tensions that might have been
present in the person that I interacted with. When we take Krsna Consciousness
to heart, we put all of ourselves into it, we invest our identity, our
time, our heart, our hope. We want to give ourselves fully and not hold
In my own interactions with Ravindra Svarupa, I certainly felt
an inner tension. I "understood" that I should surrender, but my heart
and gut said: "No!". Then I would explain to myself that this was
just maya, and that I was just unwilling to "surrender to the process"
or whatever. And the tension would increase. The more I interacted with
him, the less I wanted to surrender to him. The less I wanted to surrender
to him, the more internal tension and self-blame. Eventually, even though
it did not make sense in my then paradigm, I just didn't care anymore.
I remember thinking something like:
"Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe I'm, a bad person and an aparadhi, or whatever.
Maybe I'm in maya, but I know I don't want this. I don't want to be part
of this. This is not what I signed up for. This is not what I want!"
In 1995, I grabbed onto KC in desperation, like a drowning man grabbing
onto a floating piece of wood. I felt like I was fighting for my sanity
and my life. Gradually, as many of the self-destructive patterns that
had gotten me to that point started to diminish, little by little, through
applying Srila Prabhupada's teachings, I could see that I was in a sick
In an Amazon review of the book Anti-Freud, a reviewer quotes Karl
Kraus' line "Psycho-analysts are the disease posing as the cure".
I had experience of stuff in ISKCON that really felt like that, like a
disease disguised as a cure, or as medicine mixed with poison. When I
first came in contact with KC, I experienced a rapid improvement in my
experience of my own life. I started to feel better, fast. And even in
the midst of a very stressful and intense life situation, I felt safe,
protected, loved by God, and nourished. Externally there was chaos around
me, but inside I could feel some fragment of KC, and that fragment warmed
me like a fire in winter.
Then gradually, correlated with my increased and closer contact with the
ISKCON organization, things began to plateau, and eventually seemed to
start to get worse. For a while I attempted to rationalize it to myself
as "anartha-nivritti", some kid of inner churning. And in a way
I guess it was. It's like I was being asked: "What do you really want?
Do you want THIS?" No, I did not want it.
Imagine a man who is poisoned with many toxins. His body is saturated
with them. He comes in contact with medicine, but the medicine is itself
mixed with poison. At the beginning, he gets better. The active ingredients
in the medicine start to counteract the poisons within him, and he feels
better than he's felt in years. He keeps taking the medicine, and gradually,
the toxins within him are counteracted. He's ecstatic: "Thank you!" But,
the longer he takes the medicine, the longer he's ingesting a new kind
of poison, and poison that normally, even in his most confused state,
he would not imbibe, he would see it for what it is: poison. And the more
he takes the medicine, the more mixed-in poison he's taking in, along
with it. This new poison begins to accumulate in his tissues. His progress
slows. He starts to develop problems that he didn't even have before starting
the treatment. What the hell is going on? I know it says "medicine" on
the bottle, but what is really inside?
last few years of my life, since 2004 or so, have been about separating
the medicine from the poison, or the sand from the sweet rice. Little
by little, I seem to be getting better again, and once again feeling like
I'm moving in the right direction.
All the best, Alex
is, that you have taken a bogus guru, not listening to the supersoul within
your heart, who is called chaitya guru.
Why not listening
to the supersouls advice within the heart? Why to reject the supersouls
instruction? Why not listening to your heart? Initiation takes place first
within the heart, later from the outside gurus.
Prabhupada: Because Krishna is situated in everyone's heart.
Actually, He is the spiritual master, caitya-guru.
Prabhupada: Therefore God is called caitya-guru, the spiritual
master within the heart. And the physical spiritual master is God's
mercy. If God sees that you are sincere, He will give you a spiritual
master who can give you protection. He will help you from within and
without, without in the physical form of spiritual master, and within
as the spiritual master within the heart.
The problem is to find this friend. The problem is to find this spiritual
Prabhupada: No, there is no problem. The problem is if you are sincere.
Yes. That is stated. Because actually you have got problems, but God
is within your heart. Isvarah sarva-bhutanam hrid-dese arjuna tistahati.
God is not far away. God is within your heart. So if you are
sincere, then God will give you spiritual master. If He knows that now
you are sincere, then He will give you a spiritual master.
O.K. Thank you. That I know.
Room Conversation with Irish Poet, Desmond O'Grady--May 23, 1974, Rome
Krsna is situated in everyone's heart. Actually, He is the spiritual
master, caitya-guru. So in order to help us, He comes out as physical
spiritual master." (Lecture, 28/5/74)
God is called caitya-guru, the spiritual master within the heart.
And the physical spiritual master is God's mercy." (Room Conversation,
your question of Paramatma: you are fortunate enough for your sincere
service, Krishna as Paramatma Who is sitting within your heart
is now dictating. Krishna is so kind that He wants to help us
as Spiritual Master in two ways. He helps us from within as Caitya Guru
and He expands Himself externally as Siksa Guru (as instructor) and
diksa Guru (initiator). So the principle is that whatever you are instructed
by the Caitya Guru internally may be confirmed by the instructor or
initiator externally. Then your progress will be complete." (Srila
Prabhupada Letter to Sivananda, 05-21-69)
this stage, Krsna, or the Supersoul, dictates from within, while
from without the devotee is helped by the spiritual master, who is the
bona fide representative of Krsna. From within He helps the devotee
as caitya, for He is seated within the heart of everyone. Understanding
that God is seated within everyone's heart is not, however, sufficient.
One has to be acquainted with God from both within and without, and
one must take dictation from within and without to act in Krsna consciousness.
This is the highest perfectional stage of the human form of life and
the topmost perfection of all yoga.
carana age kariye vandana mantra guru.' Who gives mantra is diksa-guru.
Ara yata siksa-guru-gana, there is siksa-guru and all [Vaisnavas] are
siksa-gurus who are giving bhajana-siksa, who are giving the glories
of devotion. [So there are different types of guru:] diksa-guru, siksa
guru who gives Krsna-tattva and all other things, then bhajana-guru,
and also caitya-guru. Krsna Himself is caitya-guru.
who is sincere and pure gets an opportunity to consult with the Supreme
Personality of Godhead in His Paramatma feature sitting within everyone's
heart. The Paramatma is always the caitya-guru, the spiritual master
within, and He comes before one externally as the instructor and initiator
spiritual master. The Lord can reside within the heart, and He can also
come out before a person and give him instructions. Thus the spiritual
master is not different from the Supersoul sitting within the heart.
An uncontaminated soul or living entity can get a chance to meet
the Paramatma face to face. Just as one gets a chance to consult
with the Paramatma within his heart, one also gets a chance to see Him
actually situated before him. Then one can take instructions from the
Supersoul directly." (SB 4.28.52 : PURPORT )
initiation or no initiation, first thing is knowledge... knowledge.
Initiation is formality. Just like you go to a school for knowledge,
and admission is formality. That is not very important thing."
(Srila Prabhupada Press Interview, 10-16-76, Chandigarh)
disciple's relationship with a bona fide diksa guru is eternal, but
getting handed beads and throwing grain and a banana in a fire is merely
an empty ritual that is over as soon as the ashes are scattered. The
Lord in the heart always knows our sincerity and as Caitya guru will
reveal Himself and send guru according to our degree of sincerity.
SB 7.2.47 purport, "the intelligence
gets inspiration from the Supersoul (dadami
buddhi-yogam tam) [Bg 10.10]. In the synonyms to Cc Madhya 11.117
Prabhupada translates the word "prerana" as inspiration, yanre—in
whomever; krpa—mercy; kari'—bestowing; karena—does;
hrdaye—in the heart; prerana—inspiration; krsna-asraya—shelter
of Lord Krsna; haya—there is. He translates the verse, "The man
to whom the Lord shows His
mercy by inspiring him within the heart takes shelter only of
Lord Krsna…" In classical Sanskrit prerana means "motivation"
or "instigation;" in Hindi, and Bengali it means "urge," or "inspiration."
Adi 1.100 elaborates. The synonyms: diya—giving; bhakti-rasa—devotional
inspiration. Translation: "the Lord instills the mellows of transcendental
loving service into the heart
of a living being," and by implication inspires the devotee.
March 10, 2002 by roy-barrios
This seems like a simple question since so many devotees have taken
initiation. But I have asked a few devotees and they seem not to really
understand what is real initiation. So this is my humble attempt to
try to understand what is real initiation.
seems that initiation is two fold, but thats when we look at it
from the material point of view. First we have the initiation ceremony
or ritual. The ceremony seems fairly simple to understand that it is
a formality of the guru accepting the disciple and the disciple accepting
the guru. That is, of course, a very serious commitment and never to
be taken lightly. Now we must ask what does formality mean?
use the word formality because a devotee asked Srila Prabhupada how
important is formal initiation? And Srila Prabhupada said formal
initiation means to accept officially to abide by the orders of Krsna
and his representatives, that is formal initiation.
Srila Prabhupada said initiation or no initiation, first thing
is knowledge. Initiation is a formality. Just like you go to school
for knowledge and admission is formality, that is not a very important
now we have a glimpse of what is the ritual or formality or initiation.
So now we must ask what is beyond this; what is real initiation. To
try to shed some light on this, lets examine some purports by
Srila Prabhupada from the Caitanya Caritamrta.
He says the spiritual master awakens the sleeping living entity to his
original consciousness so that he can worship Lord Visnu. This is the
purpose of diksa or initiation. Initiation means receiving the pure
knowledge of spiritual consciousness. [Madhya-Lila 9.61,purport]
He says diksa actually means initiating a disciple with transcendental
knowledge by which he becomes freed from all material contamination.
[Madhya-Lila 4.111, purport]
it seems that real initiation deals with the giving of transcendental
knowledge from the guru and the receiving of transcendental knowledge
by the disciple. And also important and which binds the initiation and
fulfills the commitment is our sincerity, determination and our submission
to the guru.
to understand initiation further, Sri Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati one
said: Submission to the Absolute is not real unless it is also
itself Absolute. It is on the plane of the Absolute that the disciple
is required to submit completely to the good preceptor. On the material
plane, there can be no such thing as complete submission. So now
it seems that we must also understand that this real initiation is absolutely
on the transcendental platform.
from this we can see what is real initiation. When I ask myself who
is giving me this transcendental initiation, the answer keeps coming
up Srila Prabhupada. I recommend that you ask yourself the same question.
in closing we must pay all obeisances to the savior of the universe,
Srila Prabhupada, for His purports of transcendental knowledge.
exactly is -- initiation??
750520mw.mel Conversations 383020/530501
Devotee (3): Srila Prabhupada, if one goes to the temple, if
one attends the temple regularly and inquires from the devotees about
the devotional principles, and because of some reason, it's not necessarily...
it's not convenient for him to live in the temple at that time, and
he is living with people...
Prabhupada: No, no, you live in temple or without temple,
if you follow the instruction, that is wanted.
If you live without temple and chant sixteen rounds and observe the
regulative principle, that's all right. It doesn't require that you
should live in the temple. And if you live in the temple and do all
nonsense, then what is the use of living in the temple?
Devotee: Is it wrong to think of initiation then? Or initiated
Prabhupada: Their "thinking" means they are not fixed
up. That very word suggest that they are not fixed up. Oh, initiation
can take place anywhere.
the above convesation we see Srila Prabhupada stressing that initiation
can take place anywhere.
Many devotees think that initiation has to take place ONLY in a temple
with the fire sacrifice, all your family members,TP, GBC sanction,
etc. Yet here Srila Prabhupada states that initiation can take
Why is that?
Because initiation means it is an affair of the heart when the aspirant
decides he or she wants to be guided by the Param para disciplic sucession
as delivered down thru eternal time. When THAT time comes, THAT moment
in time is considered "initiation". Then a formal initiation can take
place later, even decades later or 11 years, as was Srila Prabhupada's
So anyway, from 1922 [when he first met Bhaktisiddhanta maharaj] to
1933 practically I was not initiated, but I got the impression of preaching
Caitanya Mahaprabhu's cult. That I was thinking. And that
was the initiation by my Guru Maharaja. Then officially
I was initiated in 1933 because in 1923 I left Calcutta. I started
my business at Allahabad. So I was always thinking of my Guru Maharaja,
that "I met a very nice sadhu." Although I was doing business I never
above is the proof by Srila Prabhupada himself. He states that he first
met Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Maharaj in 1923, at which point he
considered himself "initiated" even though he waited until
11 years later for the formal initiation, due to business concerns which
took him out of Calcutta and away from Bhaktisiddhanta Maharaj.]
Interviewer: What is the procedure of the movement? Do you initiate
yourself all the disciples or do your other disciples also do that?
Prabhupada: Well, initiation or no initiation, first thing is
knowledge. (break) ...knowledge. Initiation is formality. Just
like you go to a school for knowledge, and admission is formality. That
is not very important thing.... So our this movement is successful...
this conversation Srila Prabhupada states that for initiation,
the first thing is knowledge, not the bananna throw into the sacred
fire. First we have to be convinced about what we are hearing and doing,
then that conviction becomes our desire for initiation within the heart
by following the teachings laid down by the acaryas in our sampradaya.]
Supreme Lord is not obtained by expert explanations, by vast intelligence,
or even by much hearing. He is obtained only by one whom He Himself
chooses. To such a person, He manifests His own form."