Being Fixed Forever in Krishna Consciousness


Back To Prabhupada, Issue 60, Vol 4, 2018

In a recent broadcast (22/10/18), GBC-elected guru HG Kripamoya Dasa discussed why people leave Krishna consciousness and what can be done to make them stay. Below we present what Srila Prabhupada states about this very important subject. Kripamoya Dasa's statements are given in the shaded boxes, with all emphases added.

Personal comforts

After being told that someone who had "been a devotee for twenty years or so has turned to Christianity", Kripamoya Dasa explains that one will remain with an airline when flying if they provide the best material comforts –

"it's concerned about hospitality. Will you have a nice time, such that you will again buy a ticket for that airline. [...] they'll bring meals, and you have your in-flight movie [...] And you got all your comforts there. [...] And the next time you think of travelling with that airline you will do that."

– and that a religious process is no different:

"it's a religion, and so whoever gives the best in-flight service, who makes you feel as if you belong, as if you are comfortably ensconced with them on a journey, you will stay with them. [...] if it's comfortable, if you kind of enjoy it, if they're nice to you, and all these things. People don't really worry too much about philosophy".

And thus, he says that what makes people feel comfortable, rather than the philosophy, is what will keep people in Krishna consciousness.

Kripamoya Dasa's solution

Kripamoya Dasa therefore closes the topic by giving what he claims is the solution to stop people leaving Krishna consciousness and going elsewhere – which is to provide the comforts and infrastructure that other paths may provide:

"So, it's very important to do a couple of things. [...] See, if I become a Christian then there's always someone in the congregation who can help with my plumbing, someone who can help with the wallpaper, someone who will look after my kids, baby-sitting. I get a lot of basic needs met. [...] What to do? Well, I think the answer is just, you know, if people leave because of something that's not there, we have to try to provide what's not there [...] the fact that we're struggling to do that, we're trying to provide something may be acceptable to that person."

Srila Prabhupada's solution

In contrast to Kripamoya Dasa's solution focusing on comforts and facilities, Srila Prabhupada states that the solution to staying "fixed forever" in Krishna consciousness is understanding through intelligence (quotes below are from Srila Prabhupada Letter, 8/7/72):

"Krishna Consciousness has great potency to deliver us to the highest platform of perfection, but only if it is understood by the intelligence. Something understood by the intelligence is fixed forever and cannot waver, and that is almost spiritual."

Whereas the path of making adjustments to enable one to become "comfortably ensconced", as Kripamoya Dasa recommends, is not recommended by Srila Prabhupada:

"Vaisnava means one who is able to sit down anywhere, under any conditions, and be happy. He wants only a place to lay down, a little prasadam, and if there's a little service he can do, gladly let me do it for Krishna, that's all. As long as we are thinking I want this, that is not to my liking, or if I adjust things a certain way everything will be better, these thoughts are material. Devotional service is not conditional. So stop this dreaming state. Try to understand things with the light of your intelligence".

And thus, rather than philosophy not being so important, it is essential:

"Try to always study our books and see our philosophy from different lights of directions, become convinced yourself of this knowledge and without a doubt all of your difficulties of mind will disappear forever".

Wrong approach

Trying to accommodate those who may be seeking some facilities should not be done because such persons will never understand the philosophy anyway:

"Anyone who comes to join us, of course, must be sincere and serious regarding spiritual advancement in life [...] But one who joins with an ulterior purpose, to get material benefit or personal gratification, will never be able to grasp the philosophy of this movement."
(Cc., Adi-lila, 9.53)

Therefore, Srila Prabhupada's general approach was not to accommodate what a person may be seeking:

"Our process is to show Krishna consciousness as it is, not as others want to see it. By showing KC in this way, you are making the thing less important. It is not that we should change to accommodate the public, but that we should change the public to accommodate us."
(Srila Prabhupada Letter, 28/12/71)

If a person is seeking facilities, he will in any case just go where he will get them best. Which according to Kripamoya Dasa himself – despite his stating we should compete with Christians who make sure a person's basic needs are met – will not be ISKCON anyway:

"of course the Krishna Consciousness movement, as we are at the moment, we can never really compete with Christianity".

And hence the path of accommodation and compromise will not work anyway.


Attempting to keep someone in ISKCON by offering anything other than pure Krishna consciousness would not even be Krishna consciousness – thus defeating the whole purpose:

"Such devotional service must be unmotivated and uninterrupted in order to completely satisfy the self."
(SB, 1.2.6)

Additionally, since offering such a compromised path will not "completely satisfy the self", then in the long run this can actually contribute to a sincere person leaving rather than staying. Kripamoya Dasa states that even those looking for the "real thing" in ISKCON may leave:

"devotees who are somewhat, shall we say, hungry for real, two things, for a real transformation process within the heart, they will begin looking elsewhere".

Thus, giving them real Krishna consciousness that completely satisfies the self, rather than the wholesale deviation from Srila Prabhupada's teachings that ISKCON currently provides (see here for evidence of this: and, can only contribute to such persons staying rather than leaving.


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