GBC Guru Does Not Give Diksa


Back To Prabhupada, Issue 73, Vol. 2, 2022

Srila Prabhupada teaches that the diksa guru transmits transcendental knowledge:

"Diksa actually means initiating a disciple with transcendental knowledge by which he becomes freed from all material contamination."
(Cc., Madhya-lila, 4.111, purport)

And the GBC has admitted in GBC Resolution 404, 1999, that the "preeminent" transmitter of divya-jnana (transcendental knowledge), which is the "principal ingredient of diksa", is Srila Prabhupada. Hence, it is an undisputed fact that in ISKCON it is Srila Prabhupada who gives the divya-jnana that the diksa guru gives.

This then raises the question of what exactly the GBC gurus are giving, if not diksa? All emphases added.

I am a bhakta leader

GBC voted-in guru, HH Bhakti Vikasa Swami ("BVKS") gives some examples of why other gurus such as himself are needed, and why we can't just rely on Srila Prabhupada as being our diksa guru:

1) To show us how to use a bead bag and put on tilak:

"someone may say, ‘Well, I just came to Krsna consciousness by reading Srila Prabhupada's books', I can be a disciple directly of Prabhupada. But no one trained, did no one tell you to put your hand in your bead bag and showed you how to do it and showed you how to put on tilak and all these things? They're also gurus, can't deny that. I shouldn't deny it."
(BVKS Lecture, "Guru Issues, Part 13", 19/1/22)

2) To tell us to get up for mangala-arati:

"if I just keep on saying, I tell, "Rise early in the morning, mangala-arati 4:30, don't have mangala-arati at 7 o'clock or just whenever you feel like it, have a fixed morning program. If I just insist on this, even if I do only that, that will be a great help for so many."
(BVKS Lecture, "Guru Issues, Part 12", 3/1/22)

However, any experienced temple devotee can fulfil these types of functions. One does not need successor ‘good as God' GBC diksa gurus for such help to be given!

I don't have knowledge

BVKS also claims that GBC gurus are needed to "apply" knowledge to the current changing circumstances:

"the practical application of the philosophy [...] there are things arise with the advancement of science [...] that's one reason why the parampara goes on, because there are different challenges which arise and the devotees in disciplic succession have to take the knowledge from the previous generations and apply it in the changing times and circumstances that they find themselves in."
(BVKS Lecture, 8/11/21)

A perfect example of such challenges due to the "advancement of science" is knowing if one should use vaccines, yet BVKS admits he does not even have such knowledge!:

"just like this vaccine question, [...] apart from so many other controversies going on in and around the ISKCON world, there's the vaccine controversy. Some say you must get vaccined, Prabhupada would have done it, and others saying don't get vaccined, Prabhupada would have told us not to get vaccined, and I don't know."
(BVKS Lecture, 8/11/21)

BVKS mentions that there are "so many" controversies going on in ISKCON. This is because GBC gurus differ with each other regarding how to "apply" knowledge and thus one cannot even be sure which, or if any, GBC guru is actually giving the correct knowledge. A major example of this is whether we can have female diksa gurus, due to which BVKS states:

"the whole movement is on the verge of a split"
(BVKS Lecture, 20/1/22)

I can't remove sin

BVKS correctly states that diksa also involves the removal of sin:

"diksa, the process by which spiritual knowledge is imparted, and sin is removed."
(BVKS Lecture, "Guru Issues, Part 6", 7/11/21)

However, BVKS has also stated that GBC gurus themselves do not need to be pure or free from contamination:

"It can be tough being lauded as a great spiritual personality when you have your own internal struggles with lust, pride, envy [...] one guru may envy another [...] there may be within the heart some contamination"
(BVKS Lecture, "Guru Issues, Part 7", pub. 1/12/21)

"why should I take such a role if I'm unfit? It's a valid question."
(BVKS Lecture, "Guru Issues, Part 12", 3/1/22)

Thus, such GBC gurus cannot destroy sin when they are not free from sin themselves. For Srila Prabhupada taught:

"Because the bound cannot help the bound, the rescuer must be liberated."
(Bg., 7.14, purport)

I take the IRM's knowledge

In addition, the type of "knowledge" that BVKS does give in many cases involves explaining exactly the same things that the IRM explains, by focusing on how ISKCON is deviating, how the GBC gurus are deviating, how we must point out such defects boldly, and so on. For example:

1) In 2010, BTP 30 reported on a bogus practice taking place in some ISKCON centres where the Deities were being dressed on Christmas day in Santa Claus outfits. In a lecture on 20/1/22, BVKS spoke about how he "pointed out" deviations, and how, if they are pointed out, then "there can be rectification", and gives as an example "to dress Krsna on Christmas Day in a Santa outfit"!

2) In another lecture on "Guru Issues" (Part 2) published 10/10/21, he spoke about deviant GBC gurus and how, by following them, "in the name of devotional service it will deflect people away or bring them into something which appears to be like devotional service but which is not". Which is merely repeating what we highlight in every BTP issue.

3) Indeed, in the same lecture, he is forced to admit that by devoting so much time and effort to explain such things, then, just like the IRM, "it could be said that I'm a fault finder to even take so seriously and discuss such things"!

There are many more such examples from his lectures.


Once we analyse the GBC gurus' "contribution" in detail:

1) We can easily see that the transcendental knowledge required for diksa is actually given by Srila Prabhupada.
2) Any valid "knowledge" or "help" that they actually "give" themselves, can also be given by any other experienced devotee or even the IRM!

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