Blind Following Leads to Contradiction


Back To Prabhupada, Issue 61, Vol 1, 2019

Following on from the previous two articles, where we highlighted how ISKCON's leaders rely on blind following by their disciples, here we will demonstrate how ISKCON's leaders themselves also engage in blind following! All emphases added.

Blind enthusiasm

In previous issues, we mentioned a book authored by ISKCON guru HG Kripamoya Dasa, titled The Guru & Disciple Book. A conversation regarding this book took place on 24/9/18 involving Kripamoya Dasa, his fellow ISKCON guru HH Sivarama Swami, and one of Sivarama Swami's disciples ("SDD") – extracts from which are presented below in shaded boxes. The conversation revolves around efforts to promote this book in ISKCON, because it is pointed out that:

SDD: "no one's promoting it".

Sivarama Swami agrees enthusiastically to help promote this book:

SDD: "Kripamoya, you're OK with that? If Guru Maharaja [Sivarama Swami] takes your book forward?"
Kripamoya Dasa: "Yes."
Sivarama Swami: "It's a done deal. It's put forward."
Kripamoya Dasa: "Push it, push it."

At the same time, Sivarama Swami points out that he has not actually read the book:

Sivarama Swami: "You know I hear so much about that book. I've yet to read it, because I don't get to read books."

Thus, Sivarama Swami is enthusiastic to blindly promote a book he has not even read.

The admission regarding the book that "no one's promoting it" could be due to the fact that we thoroughly exposed this book in the BTP articles "40 Years of Cheating" (BTP 49) and "ISKCON Guru Destroys ISKCON Guru System" (BTP 50). In those articles, we revealed how the book simultaneously promotes the IRM's position and destroys ISKCON's guru system via its admission that Srila Prabhupada only appointed ritvik representatives, not guru successors. Both are compelling reasons for ISKCON to be reluctant to promote the book. And the fact that Sivarama Swami has "heard so much about the book", despite this lack of promotion, could also be due to these BTP articles having made the existence of the book known to many, with the book maybe receiving wider publicity via the IRM than it does via ISKCON itself! Indeed, Kripamoya Dasa said that our BTP 50 article gave a "great headline" and "compelling ad" for his book (Kripamoya Dasa, 19/8/16).

Blind foolishness

Kripamoya Dasa states in his book:

"In July 1977, he (Srila Prabhupada) lists eleven names of disciples [...] The letter does not appoint the eleven as gurus, it merely appoints them as continental representatives".
(Kripamoya Dasa, The Guru & Disciple Book, p. 308)

"In May 1977, Srila Prabhupada said that he would select some of his disciples to act as guru, but by November the only selection that vaguely resembled anything like that was the choosing of eleven to act as continental representatives in the matter of initiation."
(Kripamoya Dasa, The Guru & Disciple Book, p. 310)

Thus, Kripamoya Dasa states that Srila Prabhupada did not appoint 11 gurus, but "merely", or only, appointed 11 continental representatives, or "ritviks", to conduct initiations. However, Sivarama Swami states the opposite of what Kripamoya Dasa states above:

"Srila Prabhupada did complete the training, at least to his satisfaction, and did choose some gurus."
(Sivarama Swami, Continuing the Parampara, p. 14)

"that was something that Srila Prabhupada himself also employed when he also selected devotees to give diksa. And he also mentioned those who are nearest, that those devotees who are nearest geographic area they would naturally be the diksa gurus."
(Sivarama Swami Podcast, 5/2/16)

Thus, in complete contradiction to Kripamoya Dasa, Sivarama Swami states that Srila Prabhupada did appoint gurus. Indeed, he goes on to explain that the 11 individuals that Kripamoya Dasa has said, even by November (the time of Srila Prabhupada's physical departure), were "merely" selected only as 11 ritviks, were those appointed as 11 gurus (Sivarama Swami, Continuing the Parampara, p. 18). Hence, Sivarama Swami should have read Kripamoya Dasa's book before blindly agreeing to promote it, since helping to promote the opposite of what one believes in makes one look foolish.

Sivarama Swami is acknowledged at the beginning of the book by Kripamoya Dasa as being one of the "wise", "thoughtful" and "learned Vaisnavas", who "helped" him "write this book" due to their "generous contributions" and "enlightening conversations". Thus, in the same way, Kripamoya Dasa promoting Sivarama Swami as one of these contributors, even though Sivarama Swami completely contradicts Kripamoya Dasa on the most fundamental issue of whether Srila Prabhupada appointed gurus or not, also makes Kripamoya Dasa look foolish.

Kripamoya Dasa's blind reading

Like Sivarama Swami, it also appears that Kripamoya Dasa has not even read his own book carefully. For he contradicts yet another contributor who is acknowledged at the beginning of his book along with Sivarama Swami – in this case HH Tamala Krishna Goswami ("TKG"). In his book, Kripamoya Dasa claims the word "ritvik" is used "inventively" to mean "‘one who gives diksha on behalf of the guru'". That is, Kripamoya Dasa is claiming that such use is false, as it is made up. Yet his contributor TKG repeatedly used "ritvik" to mean just what Kripamoya Dasa has claimed to be an "invention"!:

"His Divine Grace said, "[...] I have selected you among eleven men as "rittik" or representative of the acarya, to give initiations, both first and second initiation, on my behalf."
(TKG Letter, 10/7/77)

"Srila Prabhupad has appointed thus far eleven representatives who will initiate new devotees on His behalf."
(TKG Letter, 11/7/77)

"His Divine Grace immediately replied, [...] Make your own field and continue to be rittik and act on my behalf."
(TKG Letter, 31/7/77)


Due to their blind loyalty to their fellow ISKCON gurus, both Kripamoya Dasa and Sivarama Swami have accepted things without first using their mental faculties and actually checking them, leading to contradiction and foolishness. This type of blind following is not Krishna consciousness:

"But it is not that it is a blind following. It is based on philosophy and science, this Krsna consciousness."
(Srila Prabhupada Lecture, 23/10/66)


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