ISKCON’s 5-Step Cheating Plan Exposed


Back To Prabhupada, Issue 19, Spring 2008

When discussing why Srila Prabhupada’s July 9th, 1977 ritvik directive for ISKCON should not be followed, followers of the guru hoax have all been trained robot-like to immediately activate a 5-step program of false arguments. We illustrate and dismantle this program of false arguments, by analysing one such real discussion which took place between the IRM and a leader of the Pandava Sena, ISKCON’s international youth group, in August, 2007. The leader has not been named as he requested anonymity, and will be referred to only as “the author”. His arguments will be enclosed in the tinted panels, with our response given underneath.

What is diksa? – 1

“He means Siksa Disciple just like Srila Prabhupada says in BG we are rupanugas which means Srila rupa Goswami is the leader of us in terms of siksa. It cant be diksa because I never met him served him what to speak of take diksa from him.”

Here it is asserted that a diksa relationship (whereby the disciple receives spiritual initiation from the Guru) cannot exist unless the disciple and Guru meet. Of course, this at a stroke disenfranchises many of Srila Prabhupada’s disciples who were initiated by him, even though they never met him, and thus this alone tells us that the statement must be false.

What is diksa? – 2

“Let me clarify what I said when I made the statement I am saying in the context that I was not not physically on the planet at the same time as Srila Prabhupada to receive Diksa from him or the personalities who he gave permission to initiate on his behalf before Srila Prabhupada left the planet.”

Having realized his huge blunder in stating that diksa must require a meeting, the author now proposes that this is not necessary as long as Srila Prabhupada is on the planet, and he had appointed ritviks to initiate on his behalf. Now we have an even more absurd proposition – that diksa does not require any contact between the Guru and disciple, only if the Guru is present somewhere on the planet, even though contact with him never needs to be made! Srila Prabhupada has never given this “must be around for NO physical contact” definition for what can constitute diksa.


“This is relevant because my question to you was ‘Is there any historical event of a ritvik initiation in any Vaishnava Parampara where the Guru wasn’t physically present on the planet?’ The reason for this question was to make the point that Srila Prabhupada wouldn’t go against Vedic Culture, Vedic Philosophy, Our Acharyas or even Krsna!!! Srila Prabhupada followed the Acharyas as this is the nature and tradition of a parampara.”

Here the point is made that unless all of Srila Prabhupada’s actions can be matched with a previous “historical event”, then he would be going against “Vedic culture, Vedic Philosophy, Our Acharyas or even Krsna”. Only Srila Prabhupada himself never states this – that his actions must always repeat previous historical events, otherwise they would be “unVedic”. Unless such an “historical event repeater clause” can be quoted from Srila Prabhupada, it is irrelevant to try and match Srila Prabhupada’s actions with previous historical events to determine their bona fideness. Quotes stating we must follow the previous acaryas can only refer to their teachings, and not to replicating every single historical event they enacted, otherwise Srila Prabhupada could never conduct an initiation in a country where an initiation had not been conducted previously, for instance; which, of course, would be ludicrous. And the previous acaryas do not teach this “historical event repeater clause” either. Indeed, Srila Prabhupada tells us:

“An acarya who comes for the service of the Lord cannot be expected to conform to a stereotype, for he must find the ways and means by which Krsna consciousness may be spread.”
(Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Adi-lila, 7.31-32, purport)

Guru, sadhu and sastra

“As you have different intrepretations of Srila Prabhupada statement to ISKCON therefore I used the check list of Guru Sadhu & Sastra to illustrate to you there is no basis of your idea of a ritvik system anywhere in our history: ‘We have to follow these three principles. Sadhu-guru-sastra-vakya ténete koriya aikya. […] If sastra-vidhi you give up, then where is the question of guru and sadhu? Na siddhim. He’s not siddha. He has not attained the perfection, because he has rejected the principles of sastra. So he’s bogus. We have to test like that who is guru.’ Srimad-Bhagavatam 7.6.2 - Toronto, June 18, 1976”

Here we see a classic misuse of the “guru, sadhu and sastra” principle. The author claims he has used “guru, sadhu and sastra” to illustrate that there is no basis for ritvik “anywhere in our history”. He has firstly confused two completely different concepts. One is the idea of “historical events” needing to be repeated, which we covered in the previous section. The other is that the statements of guru, sadhu and sastra, are used to TEST THE GURU, according to the quote provided by the author himself to back up his assertion, as seen above. Yet we are not testing any Guru, as we know that Srila Prabhupada’s statements are already bona fide, since the statements of the Guru are always in line with sadhu and sastra:

Sadhu, sastra and guru. Guru means who follows the sastra and sadhu. So there are three, the same.”
(SP Lecture, 30/11/76)

The author, rather, claims he is dealing with our “interpretations of Srila Prabhupada statement”.
In which case all he needs to do is match our “interpretation” with what Srila Prabhupada actually states, and see whether or not the “interpretation” is indeed an interpretation, or what Srila Prabhupada actually states. The author does not do this, since then, of course, it will indeed be shown that the IRM simply repeats Srila Prabhupada’s directives verbatim: “On July 9th, 1977 a ritvik system of initiation was authorised by Srila Prabhupada for ISKCON.” Instead, to get around this fact, “guru, sadhu and sastra” is thrown around, mixed in with “history”, to try and provide some “scholarly” response. When the reality is much simpler. If indeed we are claiming something different from Srila Prabhupada’s order, what we claim can simply be matched up to Srila Prabhupada’s order, and the difference shown.

Sastric (scriptural) basis

“Can you give me a sastric basis for your philosophy i.e. Where in scripture does it say that the guru doesn’t need to be on the planet to give diksa? When I say scripture I mean to make it clear Sruti and smriti scriptures.”

More mass confusion.

1) We are not presenting any new “philosophy”. We are simply asking that an order from Srila Prabhupada be followed. This proposition is the definition of how ISKCON is supposed to run. If anyone does not accept this, then let them leave ISKCON.

2) The author is asking where in sastra does it state that a restriction - that the Guru is restricted to being no further away than the diameter of the planet from where the initiation ceremony is conducted at the time of the ceremony (even though he does not need to meet the disciple, or participate in the ceremony in any way) – is not required. But since sastra does not state such a restriction exists in the first place, there is no need for it to state that such a restriction is not required! For example, sastra does not state that the Guru does not need to be in the same country (instead of on the same planet) as where the initiation ceremony is conducted, because such a restriction (needing to be in the same country as the initiate) is not given by sastra to begin with. And therefore, Srila Prabhupada was freely able to initiate many disciples even though he was not physically present in the same country as where the initiation ceremony was taking place, because he cannot be bound by a restriction that is not stated by sastra. Asking where in scripture it states a restriction is not required, simply assumes that which needs to be proven, because there is no need for scripture to state a restriction is not required, if sastra has not stated the restriction exists to begin with!

3) Actually, scripture already states the principle that a bona fide Guru initiates a disciple, which is all that is being proposed. It is those who propose restrictions and conditions onto this principle of the Guru-disciple relationship, who must substantiate these restrictions on the Guru-disciple principle by stating where in sastra such restrictions are given. For example, Srila Prabhupada states that initiation can only be taken from the current link in the disciplic succession (see Srimad-Bhagavatam, 2.9.7. purport). So this is one such condition which has been stated and we must accept it (thus we cannot “jump over” the current acarya Srila Prabhupada and take initiation from Jiva Goswami, for instance). But the condition that the Guru must be on the planet at the exact moment the initiation ceremony takes place, has not been given by sastra and therefore cannot be proposed by the GBC to try to restrain the Guru-disciple relationship between Srila Prabhupada and the members of ISKCON.


“Our authority in ISKCON is only Srila Prabhupada.” (IRM statement).
“I don’t have a problem with that Statement (above) as I accept Srila Prabhupada as my foremost Siksa guru!!”

Then any conclusions regarding the philosophy and teachings of Krishna consciousness to be applied in ISKCON must be authorised by a statement from Srila Prabhupada, by definition. Yet the author goes on to say that we have a “siksa parampara”. But Srila Prabhupada does not state this, and when challenged to provide Srila Prabhupada stating the above, the author replies:

“So If I want to prove Krsna is God and I use just the verses of Bhagavad Gita to substantiate it instead of using a Srila Prabhupada quote then it is not authorized?”

Again, more elementary mistakes, this time regarding the concept of what constitutes authority. The Bhagavad-gita verses and purports are received only through Srila Prabhupada’s translations and commentaries, otherwise any statements are not authorised, because the translation of the verse, and what one thinks it meant, could differ from the translation and explanation given by Srila Prabhupada. Otherwise with over 600 different editions of the Bhagavad-gita already existing, what need was there for Srila Prabhupada to present yet another one?

Siksa** line

“It seems that everytime I make a point you are not aware of the facts for example our parampara having siksa connection (Jaganath Das Babaji Maharaj and Bhaktivinoda Thakur) then I’m being controversial when its an obvious fact.”

And to illustrate the point just made above, that all statements must be authorised by Srila Prabhupada, we can note that what the author states is an “obvious fact” is so obvious that Srila Prabhupada states the opposite:

“Viswanath Chakrabarty accepted Jagannath Das Babajee from whom Srila Bhaktivinode Thakore was initiated.”
(Back To Godhead, Vol. 3, part 16, March 20th, 1960)

“Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura accepted Srila Jagannatha dasa Babaji, who initiated Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura.”
(Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Adi-lila 1, “The Spiritual Masters”, original 1975 edition)

**Preceptorial line as opposed to one by diksa, or initiation


Above we have dissected the most common diversions used to try to avoid following Srila Prabhupada’s directive for initiation in ISKCON:

1) First a fabricated definition of diksa will be given.

2) Then a fabricated standard that the Guru cannot order anything which has not happened previously in history is given.

3) Then for good measure the “guru, sadhu and sastra” challenge is given, to avoid actually checking what the Guru, Srila Prabhupada, states.

4) Added to this will be a demand for sastra to state that a restriction, which itself is a fabrication, does not need to be present, something which would only be necessary if the restriction was true to begin with!

5) And all this is “backed up” by throwing in “facts” outside the teachings of Srila Prabhupada.

Have a discussion with any follower of the guru hoax, and without fail the above 5-step cheating program is usually activated, as it was in this case. Only, as with all hoaxes and cheating, it cannot stand in the face of the truth, as has also been demonstrated.

BTP continues issue after issue to nail the lies, destroy the false arguments, expose the cheating, and establish the truth, so that those who dare to disobey Srila Prabhupada’s orders are finally being called to account for their Great Guru Hoax, and they can no longer hide behind a smoke-screen of absurd excuses masquerading as “scriptural arguments”.

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