Rejecting Srila Prabhupada's Authority


Back To Prabhupada, Issue 59, Vol 3, 2018

In BTP 54, "Another Stunning PFP Case Study", we exposed a paper, IA77, for relying on the authority of the Srimad-Bhagavatam cantos produced by guru hoaxer HH Hridayananda Dasa Goswami ("HD"). As a result, a follow-up paper by the same authors, ISKCON Singapore, titled "About Quoting from 11th and 12th Cantos of Srimad-Bhagavatam" (hencefoward "AQ") admits that there has been "repeated criticism of His Grace Sundar Gopal Prabhu by many people for his quoting from the part of Srimad-Bhagavatam not translated by Srila Prabhupada". However, rather than accept such legitimate criticism from many devotees, AQ foolishly attempts to defend this guru hoaxer Bhagavatam. All statements in the shaded boxes below are from AQ.

Defending the PFP with... the PFP!

"Srila Prabhupada made arrangements for the entire Bhagavatam to be available".

However, AQ does not present any evidence from Srila Prabhupada to support this claim. Instead, only the following testimony from Pradyumna Dasa ("PRD") is given:

"He [Srila Prabhupada] asked me, "So, in my absence, you can complete the Srimad Bhagavatam?" I said, "Yes, Prabhupada I'll try to do that." "Yes," he said, "Okay, good." I said, "If I have questions, I could ask Sridhar Maharaj?" He said, "Yes, you can ask him questions, yes, that's good."
- Memories: Anecdotes of a Modern-Day Saint

a) Therefore, in an act of complete self-defeat, the answer to the original charge of not relying on the authority of Srila Prabhupada's recorded words (the PFP or Prabhupada-Free Paradigm), is to again rely on the PFP, and not quote Srila Prabhupada's recorded words!

b) Presenting this testimony as "evidence" is also self-defeating because it accepts that those who actually completed the Bhagavatam, HD and his team, were not authorised to do so by Srila Prabhupada, since it claims that it was PRD who had been authorised! Indeed AQ even admits this, stating:

"Hrdayananda dasa Gosvami then entered the scene and stole the service of translation".

Guru hoax promoted

The offered testimony of PRD also claims that we must accept Gaudiya Matha guru Sridhar Maharaja as an authority to be consulted. And by rejecting the authority of only Srila Prabhupada's recorded instructions and instead putting forward testimony as authoritative evidence, one must then accept all testimonies and memories as authoritative evidence. Yet, some of these testimonies claim that Srila Prabhupada similarly "made arrangements" for the guru hoax. Indeed, even PRD, whose word is put forward here as being authoritative, also offers testimony claiming that Srila Prabhupada authorised the guru hoax:

"the Godbrothers who were selected by Srila Prabhupada to accept disciples. [...] The 11 gurus may be known as acaryas only in the second sense of the word – to their disciples".
(Letter to Satsvarupa from PRD, 7/8/78)

Thus, by accepting testimony, rather than only Srila Prabhupada, as authoritative, testimony supporting Gaudiya Matha gurus and the guru hoax must also be accepted. And yet this use of testimony has been put forward by a group claiming to reject both the Gaudiya Matha and the guru hoax!

In addition, just as the guru hoax is only based on testimonies, as shown in the previous article, the same method has been used here to justify the hoaxer Bhagavatam–with only testimony rather than evidence from Srila Prabhupada offered.

The PFP defeated by the POP

On May 28th, 1977, Srila Prabhupada was specifically asked how to translate works he had "not yet translated", and answered:

Srila Prabhupada: "But amongst our disciples, I don't think there are many who can translate properly."
Ramesvara: "None. We're not eager to publish anything which is not perfect, because you have already set the highest standard for the BBT. The name BBT means the highest standard right now in the world."
Srila Prabhupada: "That is good answer."
(Conversations with Srila Prabhupada, 28/5/77, Vol. 33, BBT, p. 270-271, emphases added)

Thus, just a few months before his departure, Srila Prabhupada is directly asked who could translate a work like the uncompleted Bhagavatam. Yet Srila Prabhupada does not mention the name of PRD or anyone else to do such translations. Rather, he agrees with Ramesvara that actually no one is qualified to do this work! Hence, not only is there no evidence from Srila Prabhupada that he authorised PRD or anyone else to translate the Bhagavatam, here there is evidence from him that he did not do this–because as we shall see such translators must be "very realised".

Guru hoax supporters not realised

Although AQ claims that only PRD was authorised by Srila Prabhupada to complete the Bhagavatam, it argues that Srila Prabhupada would have also approved of anyone else, such as HD and Gopiparanadhana Dasa ("GPD"), doing the translation, because:

"Srila Prabhupada considered only the linguistic abilities of a person and his/her willingness to take instructions from him as good enough qualifications to perform translation services."

However, in the same May 28th, 1977 conversation just quoted, Srila Prabhupada states:

"Our translation must be documents. They are not ordinary... One cannot become unless one is very realized. It is not A-B-C-D translation."

Thus, since GPD accepted the deviant guru hoax, and HD acted as a guru hoaxer:

a) Both HD and GPD do not satisfy Srila Prabhupada's standard that such translators of scripture must be "very realized".
b) Nor do they satisfy AQ's own standard that they must have a "willingness to take instructions" from Srila Prabhupada.
c) Nor, by accepting their Bhagavatam, are such guru hoax supporters being "neglected or disregarded", as IA77 directs.

AQ also supports the deviation of "jumping over" the current link, Srila Prabhupada, by promoting the guru hoaxer Bhagavatam's translations of the previous acaryas:

"in the purports, commentaries of great acaryas are quoted. [...] as far as the acaryas' commentaries are quoted, it is fine to read."


Therefore, by using the PFP to desperately support the guru hoaxer Bhagavatam, the following deviations have been introduced:

a) Not accepting only Srila Prabhupada's authority.
b) Accepting the authority of a rival Gaudiya Matha guru.
c) Accepting the guru hoax.
d) Rejecting Srila Prabhupada's statements, as well as contradicting one's own statements, in order to claim that deviant guru hoax supporters are "very realised" Vaisnavas.
e) Supporting the "jumping over" of Srila Prabhupada.

This is how dangerous the PFP is.

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