Here is Your Answer, Mahavidya!

by Bhagavat das (ACBSP)

All right Mahavidya Prabhu, first of all you responded to Sripad Tripurari Maharaja’s article in which he quoted several letters saying how Srila Prabhupada wanted co-operation with His Godbrothers. Sripad Tripurari Maharaja also explained how he could find no evidence of a statement by Srila Prabhupada where he said never leave ISKCON. Your response to this was to bring up this letter by Srila Prabhupada:
"I am in due receipt of your letter dated September 3 1975, with the enclosed statement about Bon Maharaja. So I have now issued orders that all my disciples should avoid all of my Godbrothers. They should not have any dealings with them nor even correspondence, nor should they give them any of my books or should they purchase any of their books, neither should you visit any of their temples. Please avoid them."
(SPL to Visvakarma das, 9 Nov 1975)
You asked in one article if any one knows why Srila Prabhupada wrote this letter and if the GBC was enforcing the directive in this letter. You have expressed in your last article that I did not address or comment on the letter and you would like to see a written letter from Srila Prabhupada that reverses his instructions from this letter. I noticed that you conveniently avoided the more significant points in my letter that Srila Prabhupada went to great lengths to establish a working relationship with his god brothers. How convenient for you to ignore what is not in the best interests of your argument. I offered you six points (not 5 because he made the same point “ask my godbrothers to forgive my offences” to 2 different people and in fact made that point to many, many of his godbrothers during that time. I put it down twice to show that Srila Prabhupada did not just say this once as a throw away line but repeated it many times with sincerity and I was a witness to some them myself) all of which were made two years after the letter. In fact I was also in the room when Srila Prabhupada talked to Bon Maharaja. They had some discussion and made amends with each other. So now that you know that Srila Prabhupada and Bon Maharaja made amends can we dismiss the letter now?

I pointed out that Srila Prabhupada instructed I and Srila Gour Govinda Maharaja to preach with his god brother Srila Bhaktivaibhava Puri Maharaja and I pointed out that in 1977 Srila Prabhupada established the Bhaktivedanta Swami Charity trust in his final days and that Srila Prabhupada named two of his Godbrothers as trustees, Srila Madhusudhana Maharaja and Srila Madhava Maharaja. Now this trust consists of his disciples and his god brothers. So are his disciples supposed to not co-operate with the god brothers on the trust with them based on this letter or does the fact that he made the trust obviously reverse his statement in this letter? After the document is finished Srila Prabhupada reads the list of names to the devotees along with the plans for refurbishing some of the Gaudiya Matha buildings. Does this sound like Srila Prabhupada wants us to not co-operate with his God brothers? He is spending the money from his society to rebuild Gaudiya Matha buildings! Is this in keeping with the mood of that letter from 1975. After he reads the list of names the following conversation occurs:

Prabhupada: How do you think the idea?
Jayapataka: All of your ideas, Srila Prabhupada, are perfect. I am not someone to offer opinion. But if you ask, I think that actually, especially the yoga-pitha, natha-mandira, that's a very dynamic idea, and in general it must do good.
Prabhupada: We want cooperation.
Tamala Krsna: No more non-cooperation.
YOU DID NOT COMMENT ON THIS POINT I MADE MAHAVIDYA! Srila Prabhupada says here in this conversation WE WANT CO-OPERATION! He wants Co-operation between whom? He wants co-operation between His godbrothers and his disciples that’s who! That is a direct instruction that counters the letter of 1975. Not only is he saying it but he is demonstrating it by his actions in making his disciples work together on a trust with His god brothers. This decision affects the whole society because he is using the society’s money that is being collected by His disciples from all over the world to pay for the refurbishing of the Gaudiya Matha buildings of His god brothers. Thus by implication he has all of His disciples co-operating with His god brothers. Srila Prabhupada is talking to Jayapataka, Tamal, and Bhavananda was also there, and later he gave a similar order to myself and Srila Gour Govinda Maharaja. Is Srila Prabhupada instructing that only we should co-operate with his god brothers and no other disciple should because of a letter 2 years earlier? Srila Prabhupada gave instructions to Srila Narayana Maharaja that ISKCON and the Gaudiya Matha should preach together I have given you the relevant quotes from the tape recording. He also instructs Srila Narayana Maharaja to instruct us about this co-operation. Is this not enough evidence for you? Your Spiritual Masters own voice saying “NOW WE SHOULD PREACH TOGETHER” AND “KINDLY INSTRUCT THEM ON THIS MATTER” is this not enough evidence for you?

Maybe if you could find the other tapes then we could have the more direct instructions to us on the matter. You are probably asking what tapes? Look at the folio there is no tape recordings from the middle of August 1977 till the beginning of October 1977. What happened? Srila Prabhupada did not speak for 6 weeks? I don’t think so! I spoke with many of my Godbrothers when I retuned to Vrndavana from the USA in the beginning of October 1977. They told me how Srila Prabhupada made statements like this “The war is over” “No more fighting with the Gaudiya Matha” “I want co-operative preaching both sides working together” “If you have any questions on the Philosophy you can ask Sridhara Maharaja He is highly competent to answer them” “If you have any questions on Vaishnava etiquette or devotional procedures you can ask Narayana Maharaja”. So there were a lot of direct instructions that were spoken during that time to contravene the instructions of that letter in 1975. All we have is the Memories of some devotees because the tapes are gone. So find the tapes if want direct instructions otherwise you will have to accept the actions of Srila Prabhupada and his instructions to a significant number of the devotees that he wanted co-operation.

Furthermore Sripad Tripurari Maharaja brought out this point in his article and you seemed to have missed it. Now I will make the same point only I am going to go further with it. What about the instructions in the books? Sruta Kirti Prabhu wrote in his new biography of Srila Prabhupada that Srila Prabhupada often stated that His books are the Law Books for the next 10,000 years? Where does it say the letters are the law for the next 10,000 years? In fact Srila Prabhupada objected to the letters even being published because he said that they were instructions to individuals and what was for one individual was not for others. He also said that the letters were according to time place and circumstance and were not always permanent instructions. Srila Prabhupada once wrote a letter to Krsna Das stating that Rahu was an allegory. He never wrote a letter retracting that statement however throughout His books, purports, lectures, and conversations, he clearly states that Rahu is real. So by your logic I would have to throw out all the statements in Srila Prabhupada’s books, conversations, lectures, purports, everything because there is no letter retracting that statement! EXUSE ME BUT THAT IS NOT OUR PHILOSOPHY! When I quoted the following statement from Nectar of Devotion chapter 19 you conveniently avoided talking about this directly also but chose to point out something I said in relation to it:

“There are many societies and associations of pure devotees, and if someone with just a little faith begins to associate with such societies, his advancement to pure devotional service is rapid.”

Many societies of pure devotees not just ISKCON. These are Srila Prabhupada’s words in His books which he has stated are the law books for the next 10,000 years this is the law not the letters. Show me the statement in Srila Prabhupada’s conversations, books, or even in his letters where it says “My letters are the law for the next 10,000 years”. We will not find such a statement anywhere in Srila Prabhupada’s books, conversations, or letters. So here is my comment on the letter of 1975: I dismiss this letter as irrelevant to my choice of association in the present stage of my life for the following reasons:

1) The instructions in the letter were written in response to some adverse statements made by Bon Maharaja. Srila Prabhupada asked forgiveness for his offenses to all of his god brothers in the way he spoke harshly of them and he and Bon Maharaja made amends with each other. If my Guru Maharaja has made amends with His god brothers and asked forgiveness from them for His actions as his disciple it would be an offense to my Spiritual master for me to ignore His words and actions and continue to hold a grudge against that person or ignore him because of a letter that Srila Prabhupada issued 2 years before the disagreements were resolved. Therefore I dismiss the letter.

2) Srila Prabhupada demonstrated by His actions and His instructions to various disciples and god brothers that he wanted co-operation between them for pushing on the mission of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu all over the world. Furthermore, by his actions of using the funds collected by all of His disciples in His world wide society to rebuild and renovate the temples and buildings of His godbrothers he has involved all of His disciples in a process of co-operating with His godbrothers. For any disciple to ignore the latter actions and instructions of co-operation because of a letter issued 2 years earlier before these issues were resolved would be ignorant, self serving, ill mannered, and offensive to Srila Prabhupada. Therefore I dismiss the letter.

3) Srila Prabhupada clearly states in His books that: “There are many societies and associations of pure devotees, and if someone with just a little faith begins to associate with such societies, his advancement to pure devotional service is rapid." His books are the Law books for the next 10,000 years and therefore supersede all temporary instructions in letters especially when those instructions have been countered by Srila Prabhupada’s actions and words. The books are the permanent authority the letters temporary therefore I dismiss the letter.

4) Srila Prabhupada told us to finish the work of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura. Srila BhaktivinodaThakura predicted the unification of all the Vaishnavas in the world in order to unify all the people in the world and drown them in Vaishnava Prema and Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura confirmed that prediction and Srila Prabhupada said we should fulfill it by asking us to finish the work of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura. I want to fulfill the predictions and orders of the Guru Varga and work toward unifying all the Vaishnavas in the world so we can drown everyone in the world in Vaishnava prema. The temporary letter of November 1975 which has already been reversed by the actions and words of Srila Prabhupada has absolutely no bearing on these predictions and instructions. In fact because the instructions in this letter would be an obstruction to the fulfillment of these prophesies it proves that they were temporary instructions in the letter, and not like the instructions given in His books, which are the law books for the next 10,000 years and therefore more reflective of Srila Prabhupada’s final opinion on the matter. Therefore I dismiss the letter.

I consider that the temporary instructions in this letter according to time place and circumstance are complete nullified for all the reasons I mentioned above and since I have taken the time to write four separate points explaining why it is nullified you will now have counter each and every point with a point by point analysis and refutation. If you do not then I will not accept your response or argument as having any basis in reality.

Sripad Tripurari Maharaja and I have both made genuine offers in our articles to work in co-operation with all other devotees for the benefit of fulfilling Srila BhaktivinodaThakura’s prophesies to drown the whole world in Vaishnava Prema. You have ignored his request and made derisive remarks about mine complaining about some disciple of Srila Narayana Maharaja who criticized Srila Prabhupada. Let me tell you Mahavidya, if Sripada Tripurari Maharaja and I had a single penny for everyone of the offensive statements made by our god brothers and disciples of our god brothers about Srila Sridhara Maharaja and Srila Narayana Maharaja we would have enough money to build the Temple of Understanding in Sridham Mayapura. Still, I can only speak for myself, but I have a suspicion that Sripada Tripurari Maharaja would agree that in the spirit of Srila Prabhupada’s mood of forgiveness I would be overjoyed to work with any devotee from any sangha who would be agreeable to giving the same mutual respect and regard to the sadhus that I have chosen for guidance and association as they give their own and I would respond by conducting myself in the same mood. It is truly unfortunate that genuine efforts to create unity amongst all the different branches of the Brahma, Madhva, Gaudiya, Sarasawat Parivar Sampradaya, which is the container of Srila Bhaktivinoda’s vicara dhara, or current of conceptions, including his desire to see all the Gaudiya Vaishnavas and the world drown in Prema, is met by so many with derision and sectarian mood clothed in the false garb of the so called instructions of the Guru.

If this letter were a permanent instruction then the prophesy of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura would not be fulfilled, because we would be permanently unable to associate with anyone in the Gaudiya Matha. If we could not join in mutual embrace with ALL THE GAUDIYA VAISHNAVAS then the prophesy would go unfulfilled. First all the Gaudiya Vaishnavas have to embrace and be drowned in Vaishnava Prema then the whole world can be drowned in Vaishnava Prema. So Mahavidya Prabhu let me ask you 4 things and you just answer YES or NO real simple.

1) Do you accept the Prophesy of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura that I showed everyone in the Prophesy Article? YES OR NO

2) Do you accept the words of Srila Saraswati Thakura (link same: Prophecy Article) declaring that the Prophesy of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura will definitely come true? YES OR NO

3) Do you accept that Srila Prabhupada instructed us to finish the work of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura (link same Prophecy Article?) which would include the prophesy? YES OR NO

4) Do you accept the following instruction of Srila Prabhupada in His Law Books for the next 10,000 years for all of His disciples and their heirs to read for the next 10,000 years which states as follows: “There are many societies and associations of pure devotees, and if someone with just a little faith begins to associate with such societies, his advancement to pure devotional service is rapid. Do you accept this instruction in Srila Prabhupada’s books? YES OR NO

If you have answered YES to those 4 questions then you must reject the letter as a temporary instruction which was reversed for all the reasons I mentioned above these questions. However if you reject the above teachings based on a temporary instruction that has been reversed for all the above reasons I mentioned above these questions then I don’t know Mahavidya Prabhu I guess you must be one of those persons Srila Saraswati Thakura was talking about when he said the following: “Those who would thoughtlessly allow their hollow pride of race, pseudo-knowledge or pseudo-virtue to stand in the way of this long hoped for consummation, would have to thank only themselves for not being incorporated in the spiritual society of all pure souls.”

Good luck with that Mahavidya Prabhu GOOD LUCK!

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