Accepting Srila Prabhupada’s Books


Back To Prabhupada, Issue 36, Summer 2012

In the Preface to Srimad-Bhagavatam, it is stated:

“Such transcendental literatures, even though irregularly composed, are heard, sung and accepted by purified men who are thoroughly honest.”

And the opposite of such honesty is duplicity:

“Your dealings must be very honest, not duplicity.”
(Srila Prabhupada Lecture, 14/12/1972)

Thus, in order to accept the transcendental literatures that comprise Srila Prabhupada’s books, one must be “thoroughly honest”, rather than duplicitous.
In the examples below, all emphases have been added.

Duplicitous recommendation 1

On the “Guru-disciple” course presented by ISKCON UK, one of the presenters, ISKCON guru HG Kripamoya Das (“KMD”), recommends, in response to the question of whom to accept as guru, that:

“Obviously we recommend that it should be a guru in ISKCON.”

In regards to initiation, KMD states:

“it stands to reason that you cannot be ‘initiated into ISKCON.’ That would make an organization a sampradaya, which it isn’t. I have even heard the expression: ‘I’ve been initiated by ISKCON,’ which makes the organization a guru – which it isn’t.”
(KMD, 20/6/2012)

This is the exact opposite of what is stated by another ISKCON guru, HH Sivarama Swami (“SRS”):

“Therefore we should need to highlight that this initiation means initiation into ISKCON. In India, people, they relate to us as the ISKCON parampara. We’re not exactly the ISKCON parampara or ISKCON sampradaya, we’re Brahma Madhava Gaudiya sampradaya. But it is! It’s initiation into a Society, in which our revered spiritual master plays an important role.”
(SRS, Initiation lecture, 11/1/2009)

So, KMD is recommending that we take initiation from someone who, according to him, does not even know what initiation is!

Duplicitous recommendation 2

KMD states:

“Well, firstly, ISKCON was established for the propagation of ‘spiritual knowledge to society at large and to educate all people in the techniques of spiritual life.’ So it’s not just another organization for chopper pilots, or the manufacturing of goods, or the provision of services for commercial profit. Although ISKCON values pilots, goods and services, the organization was started for producing something else.
(KMD, 20/6/2012)

The exact opposite is understood by another ISKCON guru, HH Bhakti Charu Swami (“BCS”):

“Maharaja (BCS – Ed.) was discussing his plans to create new opportunities for the youth of ISKCON. He had mentioned previously in South Africa that ISKCON needed to create the opportunities to engage the youth helping maintain them whilst keeping them in good association. He mentioned his plans to set up a residential flight academy in Ujjain where one can come and train to become a pilot from all over the world.”
(BCS Istagosthi, 12/5/2006)

So, KMD is recommending that we accept initiation in ISKCON from someone who, according to him, does not even know what the purpose of ISKCON is!

Duplicitous recommendation 3

KMD defines a diksa guru as:

“the ‘thought-leader’ member. Inspiration, philosophical astuteness, systematic education, pastoral care, mentoring, protecting the new convert, preparing them for initiation, and initiating them is the contribution of this type of member.”

(KMD, The Vaishnava Voice, 13/6/2012)

However, on KMD’s “Guru-disciple” course, it is also stated that “systematic education, pastoral care, mentoring” are not provided by an ISKCON guru:

“the spiritual master may only meet you once a year perhaps. […] But you’re not communicating with him on a daily basis. So how will you advance in your spiritual life? So siksa is a very important principle in spiritual life, with the guide and mentor that you have is regularly in touch with you, helping you on a daily basis. [...] But in terms of direct, personal instruction – you know, I’ll be lucky if I get a minute. I’ll be lucky if I get a smile.”

Whereas, Srila Prabhupada does provide “inspiration and systematic education”:

“Srila Prabhupada’s instructions are the essential teachings for every ISKCON devotee.”
(GBC Resolutions 1994, Founder Acarya Statement)

“A duly initiated disciple in ISKCON […] During his devotional life, he may experience that he derives more spiritual inspiration from Srila Prabhupada’s books and vani than from his own diksa-guru.”
(GBC Resolutions 2000)

Thus, KMD recommends ISKCON gurus, rather than Srila Prabhupada, as the diksa guru, even though Srila Prabhupada, rather than the ISKCON gurus, fits the definition of diksa guru that KMD himself gives!

Duplicitous recommendation 4

ISKCON guru BCS has all along recommended SRS and his writings as most spiritually exalted:

“This indeed indicates your exalted spiritual position. […] Your writings are also a clear indication of your exalted spiritual position.”
(BCS Letter to SRS, September 2003)

BCS also states:

“We do not have to follow some gopi, imagine some gopi, and imagine our identity in relation with that gopi and so forth. Artificially. […] There is no need to artificially imagining something and then end up losing your spiritual life.”
(BCS Lecture, 1/7/2012)

However, SRS’s writings are full of such “gopi imagination”:

“In one nocturnal encounter Acyutananda met his spiritual master in his gopi form and came to understand the eleven aspects of his own spiritual identity, such as his name and services. In another encounter, he perceived himself as a gopi serving Radha and Krsna in Vraja […] Acyutananda Dasa is a fictional character, as are the other personalities, places (other than the holy dhamas), and events in this narrative.”
(SRS, Suddha Bhakti Cintamani)

Thus, BCS is happy to recommend SRS and his writings as spiritually exalted, even though BCS also claims that these same writings can lead to one losing one’s spiritual life!


To recommend that which one himself does not agree with, is duplicitous, rather than “thoroughly honest” behaviour. In our previous article, “The ABCs of Krishna Consciousness”, we detailed how those who are supposed to be the most advanced devotees in Krishna consciousness do not even understand the basics of Krishna consciousness. Such a lack of understanding is only to be expected, if, as we document in every BTP issue, they do not even possess the basic quality required to accept Srila Prabhupada’s books - honesty, rather than duplicity.

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