The Manifest Presence of Sound

by Sriman Bhagavat Das

25 May 2006

Recently Dhira Govinda Prabhu wrote an article called “Sound and Presence” which appeared here on Sampradaya Sun. The article is in my opinion a veiled attempt at trying to promote the idea that Srila Prabhupada can still be the initiating spiritual master of an aspiring devotee today. His quotes from Srila Prabhupada’s letters and books are truths which tell only part of the process of diksha. I have made an examination of the quotes and his conclusions and I have given quotes from Srila Prabhupada, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura, and Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura, to show that the view I am presenting with these quotes is the view of the entire Parampara. I did him the courtesy of discussing this very article you are about to read with him personally before I put it on the web. I see that he has written another article presenting the most absurd conclusion that it is clear that Srila Prabhupada wanted to be the last Acharya in the Parampara and the most prominent link. I will address this article later for now here is my response to his first article.

Let us remember that Srila Prabhupada gave us very clear instructions to study his books. He encouraged us in his books and lectures to read the books of Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura and the six Goswamis. And he expected us to become thoroughly knowledgeable about the process of devotional service. The process of how we study his books is of utmost importance and that is what I intend to explain in this article. I will present excerpts from Dhira Govinda Prabhu's first article followed by my critique with quotes. I will start with the following paragraph which quotes a letter from Srila Prabhupada to Rupanuga Prabhu.

Dhira Govinda Prabhu wrote: We receive mercy from the parampara in the opportunity to hear from the members of the parampara. Hearing from the disciplic succession intrinsically implies transcendental sound vibration. Srila Prabhupada wrote to Rupanuga Prabhu “Anyone who reads the books that is also chanting and hearing. Why distinguish between chanting and book distribution? These books I have recorded and chanted, and they are transcribed. It is spoken kirtanas. So book distribution is also chanting. These are not ordinary books. It is recorded chanting. Anyone who reads, he is hearing.” (Oct. 19, 1974)

This is an interesting quote because it almost exactly mirrors, as many of Srila Prabhupada’s quotes do, a passage written by his Spiritual Master Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura in his article “Thakura Bhaktivinode”. Srila Saraswati Thakura says:

“What are the Scriptures? They are nothing but the record by the pure devotees of the Divine Message appearing on the lips of the pure devotees. The Message conveyed by the devotees is the same in all ages. The words of the devotees are ever identical with the Scriptures.”

This quote is very clearly in complete harmony with the letter to Rupanuga Prabhu. However, the following sentence raises an important question about how one can access the hidden mysteries of the scriptures, the sentence follows:

“Any meaning of the Scriptures that belittles the function of the devotee who is the original communicant of the Divine Message contradicts its own claim to be heard.” Thakura Bhaktivinode By Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura

If a person believes that they can study and understand the scriptures independent of the guidance of the manifest pure devotee through hearing the transcendental sound vibration from his lotus lips, than that interpretation of the scriptures contradicts its own claim to even be heard. Let’s see if this is where Dhira Govinda Prabhu is going with this. Let’s see if he is really proposing that one can connect to the spiritual master through his books after he is no longer manifest on the planet.

Dhira Govinda Prabhu wrote: “In Vaisnava societies the question has arisen whether the relationship between spiritual master and disciple necessitates physical presence. Of course there are numerous quotes from Srila Prabhupada regarding the primary importance of vani compared to vapu. Still, the controversy is there, with regards to the continuation of the disciplic succession, regarding the role of physical presence.”

It appears that this is the direction he is headed in so lets see what Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura has to say in this regard when he faced a similar situation after Srila Bhaktivinode Thakur wound up his manifest pastimes. In a quote from the same article:

“There have, however, already arisen serious misunderstandings regarding the proper interpretation of the life and teachings of Srila Thakura Bhaktivinoda. Those who suppose they understand the meaning of his message without securing the guiding grace of the Acarya are disposed to unduly favor the methods of empiric study of his writings. There are persons who have got by heart almost everything that he wrote without being able to catch the least particle of his meaning. Such study cannot benefit those who are not prepared to act up to the instructions lucidly conveyed by his words. There is no honest chance of missing the warnings of Thakura Bhaktivinoda. Those, therefore, who are misled by the perusal of his writings are led astray by their own obstinate perversity in sticking to the empiric course which they prefer to cherish against his explicit warnings. Let these unfortunate persons look more carefully into their own hearts for the cause of their misfortunes. The personal service of the pure devotee is essential for understanding the spiritual meaning of the words of Thakura Bhaktivinoda.” Thakura Bhaktivinode by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura.

Now Srila Saraswati Thakura is pointing out that after the winding up of the manifest pastimes of Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura there has been some serious misunderstandings regarding the proper interpretation of his life and teachings. SOUND FAMILIAR? Srila Saraswati Thakura states that without the guiding grace of the manifest acharya and the personal service to his lotus feet the spiritual meaning of the words of Thakura Bhaktivinode cannot be understood. Some may try to misinterpret the meaning of these words to say that the pure devotee can be served even after his manifest pastimes and this is indeed true. However why then is Srila Saraswati Thakura making an issue of the fact that even those who memorize the books of the Thakura cannot understanding their meaning without being under the guidance of the Acharya? If the acahrya he is talking about is the one who is not manifest at present than what guidance would he give accept that which is in his books which Srila Saraswati Thakura is saying one cannot understand without the guiding grace of the Acharya. Which acharya? Obviously the present manifest acharya, himself. Let’s see if Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura agrees with this assessment. Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura states as follows:

“What can we gather from the words of this Mahajana Srila Ragunatha Das Goswami? We understand that the desire for pratistha can never be removed by studying and discussing shastra, by hearing instructions from those who have not attained prema, nor by practicing various bodily processes of yoga. It can only be removed by associating with and serving visuddha vaisnavas. Having searched for and found such vaisnavas, it is our ultimate goal to associate with and serve them.” Pratistha Parivarjana by Thakura Bhaktivinode.

Here Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura is very direct, You cannot remove the false egotistical covering (pratistha) and realize your true spiritual form by studying books, discussing books, hearing books being recited by those who are not Prema Bhaktas, or by doing yoga exercise. Only by direct association of vishuddha vaishnava’s which are presently manifesting their pastimes on the planet. If you were to interpret this association with the pure devotees to include those who were not manifest on the planet at this time then you would have to associate through the books which have already been rejected as a way for the condition soul to remove pratistha by Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura. One may ask does Srila Prabhupada teach this. Let’s look at the following purport by Srila Prabhupada.

“One should not proudly think that one can understand the transcendental loving service of the Lord simply by reading books. One must become a servant of a Vaisnava.” Purport to CC Antya 7:53 by Srila Prabhupada.

Srila Prabhupada repeats the same concept as Thakura Bhaktivinode by saying if one is full of pratistha (pride) and thinks he can understand the transcendental loving service of the Lord simply by reading books then his conclusion is wrong. One must become the servant of a manifest Vaishnava. Now if Srila Prabhupada were indicating that one could associate with a pure devotee who had already wrapped up his manifest pastimes than he would be contradicting himself because the only association would be through his books and Srila Prabhupada just said to think you can understand transcendental loving service through reading books is false egotistical pride.

This conclusion of Srila Prabhupada’s must be the correct conclusion because it is the conclusion of Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura and Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur his GURU. In Srila Saraswati Thakur’s Upadeshavali, the word Upadesavali means the ultimate advice, we shall see what the ultimate advice of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur is on hearing?

“Krsna's darsan can only be attained through the medium of the ear as one hears Hari-katha from pure Vaisnavas; there is no other way.”

Here Srila Saraswati Thakura expresses in the most concise and unambiguous manner that hearing Hari-katha through the medium of the ear from the lips of the Pure Vaishnava who is manifest on the planet is the only process for getting Krishna’s Darshan. This is the goal of Krishna Consciousness and since books don’t have lips he could not possibly be referring to books but the manifest pure devotee. Next Dhira Govinda will begin a kind of smoke and mirrors game by presenting and then misinterpreting a verse from Srimad Bhagavatam. Perhaps it is because he does not have the association of the manifest pure devotee to guide him in his study of scripture that he has come to this wrong conclusion.

Dhira Govinda Prabhu wrote: “Srimad-Bhagavatam explains "Persons who are learned and who have true knowledge define sound as that which conveys the idea of an object, indicates the presence of a speaker screened from our view and constitutes the subtle form of ether." (SB 3.26.33)

I invite us to consider this verse with respect to the question of presence. Sound vibration indicates the presence of a speaker screened from view. So, when we hear Srila Prabhupada’s sound vibration, might we understand that he is, with reference to the above definition, present and screened from our view. This screening, of course, is a reflection of our limitations and not of Srila Prabhupada’s lack of full presence.” Well if Dhira Govinda Prabhu had bothered to read the purport he would find that Srila Prabhupada does not agree with his conclusion. Here is a quote from the purport of the above mentioned verse:

“The science of God has to be understood in disciplic succession from Brahma, who was first instructed about knowledge of God by God Himself. We can understand the knowledge of God by hearing Bhagavad-gita from a person authorized in the disciplic succession.” Purport SB 3.26.33 by Srila Prabhupada

Srila Prabhupada says by hearing, with your ears, from a person authorized in disciplic succession, the manifest pure devotee, one can understand Bhagavad Gita not just by reading the book. This is exactly the same point made by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura and Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura. Srila Prabhupada makes this same point again in another purport of Srimad Bhagavatam as follows:

“A complete progressive march on the return path home, back to Godhead, will depend on the instructions of the revealed scriptures directed by a realized devotee.” Purport SB 2.3.24 by Srila Prabhupada

We must be directed by a realized devotee who is manifest on the planet, with lips to speak the truth to our spiritually deaf ears. Or as Srila Saraswati Thakura says securing the guiding grace of the acharya, Otherwise reading the books on our own will be false pride and bear no fruit. Srila Prabhupada further elucidates this in the following conversation:

Madhudvisa: ...cannot become a medical practitioner by simply reading the books. He must study under a medical practitioner. So in the case of your books, is it possible to become a devotee without actually having personal association with you? Just by reading your books?

Prabhupada: No, it is not that you have to associate with the author. but one who knows, if you cannot understand you have to take lesson from him. not necessarily that you have to contact with the author always.

Devotee: Just like the textbooks are not written by the teachers; they’re written by other professors.

Devotee: Usually you don’t even meet the author.

Prabhupada: Simply one who knows the subject matter, he can explain.

Madhudvisa: But can your, would your purports, would that serve as explanation besides...

Prabhupada: No, no, anyone who knows the subject matter, he will be able to explain. not necessarily the author is required to be present there.

Morning Walk May 21, 1975 Melbourne

It is true that the presence of the author, Srila Prabhupada, is not required to understand the books. However to understand his books properly not even Srila Prabhupada’s purports will serve to fully explain their real meaning. The manifest presence of someone who knows the subject matter is absolutely required. Could this be any person who has read the books? Well if we follow the analogy that Srila Prabhupada has given then we can understand that a qualified medical doctor writes the text books and a qualified medical doctor must teach them to the students even if he is not the author of the medical textbooks. As long as he is a qualified medical practitioner he can explain them. If one does not go to medical school and learn the process by hearing the medical doctor explain the books but he reads them on his own he will not become qualified.

In the same way Srila Prabhupada is a pure devotee and the author of the books. Anyone who is a pure devotee who is presently manifesting his pastimes on the planet can explain the subject matter. This is the conclusion of Srila Prabhupada in this conversation. You cannot become a medical practitioner simply by reading books and you cannot understand the transcendental loving service of the Lord simply by reading the books. Since Dhira Govinda Prabhu is not following the advice of Srila Prabhupada in understanding his books he makes another mistake in his interpretation of the Srimad Bhagavatam as follows:

Dhira Govinda Prabhu wrote: Lord Brahma received knowledge, was initiated into knowledge, from a Speaker screened from view. Does that indicate that the initiation was not valid, because the speaker remained concealed? Did Lord Brahma not have a living spiritual master, because the Speaker was screened from view? We understand from Srila Prabhupada that Lord Brahma received knowledge from within the heart. I think it’s important to realize that this is the case not just with Brahma. In any authentic relationship between guru and disciple, knowledge is received within the heart. "Divya jnan hrde prokoshito."

Lord Brahma is initiated by the goal of his worship. The Supreme Lord is both Via Media and Ultimate Goal for Lord Brahma. The ultimate goal of worship cannot reveal himself while he is taking the role of the via media. Hence what was applicable to Lord Brahma is not applicable to anyone else in the Sampradaya since all the other Gurus in the Sampradaya are not the ultimate goal of worship but the via media to getting darshan of the ultimate goal. This does not mean that we do not worship the Guru as good as God but we also understand that he is not God and that he is teaching us to accept Krishna as the Supreme Lord not himself. Hence using Lord Brahma as an example is inapplicable to everyone else. What we learn in fact is that everyone else in the Sampradaya is initiated by the manifest acharya in the Sampradaya. That is the Guru who is manifesting his pastimes on the planet at the time becomes the person who performs the initiations into the Sampradaya not the one who has wrapped up his manifest pastimes on the planet. This is the process and there has never been and there will never be another way. Dhira Govinda Prabhu, lacking the association of the manifest pure devotee, unfortunately continues to flounder in his attempts to explain this untenable and unauthorized concept as follows.

Dhira Govinda Prabhu wrote: Genuine disciplic succession is based on sound, and it is also based on presence, though this presence is not mundane. My understanding is that even if the spiritual master, in the common sense of the term, is “physically present”, still he is screened from the view of conditioned souls. That is, his transcendental position is not seen, or understood. And, transcendental knowledge is conveyed through the heart. In a consciousness of receiving this knowledge, we open a direct relationship with the guru. His presence is manifest, and the essential process of diksa is alive within us. This consciousness that allows us to enter this relationship entails a conscious choice to serve our spiritual master.

Unfortunately Dhira Govinda Prabhu fails to explain that the Spiritual Master has to make a conscious choice to accept the service of the disciple. This is done when the particular guru who is representing the Sampradaya is manifesting his pastimes on this planet. When he winds up those pastimes on this planet he then ceases to initiate on this planet. Srila Prabhupada is presently preparing to initiate on another planet in another universe and is no longer making conscious decisions to accept disciples on this planet in this universe. He has left explicit instructions in his books and lectures that if you want to understand his books you have to hear and learn them from another manifest pure devotee. These are the exact same instructions of his predecessor acharya’s as I will again demonstrate by the following quotes:

“To hear and explain them (the revealed scriptures) is more important than reading them. One can assimilate the knowledge of the revealed scriptures only by hearing and explaining”. Srila Prabhupada’s purport to 1:1:6 of the Srimad Bhagavatam.

Notice here how Srila Prabhupada very deliberately elevates the process of hearing above the process of reading and makes the process of reading subservient to the process of hearing. He also uses a very significant word here “assimilate”. Srila Prabhupada could have used the words “realize, or understand, or learn, the knowledge but these words would have been more indicative of the process of obtaining materiel knowledge. The word assimilate is explained in the dictionary as “the transformation of food into living tissue” what Srila Prabhupada is trying to do when he uses this word is explain the process of the transformation of the consciousness of the jiva through the process of hearing. That our mundane consciousness becomes transformed into living spiritual consciousness by the process of hearing from the lotus lips of the pure devotee. The following verse from the Srimad Bhagavatam 3rd Canto, 25th Chapter, 33rd verse, sheds further light on this subject.


“Bhakti, devotional service, dissolves the subtle body of the living entity without separate effort, just as fire in the stomach digests all that we eat.”

The subtle body becomes digested by the process of devotional service. When this happens one becomes Mukta Purusha, liberated within the body. What is this liberation? The eternal spiritual form of the jiva now directly animates the senses of the body without the materiel false ego, mind, and intelligence as a filter between the soul and the body. One attains their real spiritual ego, mind, and intelligence, and senses as well. Hence the body also becomes purified and spiritualized.

To assimilate “the transformation of food into living tissue”, to dissolve and digest our subtle body is to have our mundane consciousness transformed into living spiritual consciousness by the process of hearing from the lotus lips of the pure devotee. This transformation process is explained in the Bhagavad Gita 4th chapter 24th verse in the purport by Srila Prabhupada.

“This material veil can be removed at once by Krsna consciousness; thus the offering for the sake of Krsna consciousness, the consuming agent of such an offering or contribution; the process of consumption, the contributor, and the result are-all combined together-Brahman, or the Absolute Truth. The Absolute Truth covered by mäyä is called matter. Matter dovetailed for the cause of the Absolute Truth regains its spiritual quality. Krsna consciousness is the process of converting the illusory consciousness into Brahman, or the Supreme.”

This is further explained in the Caitanya Caritamrta Antya Lila 4th Chapter verses 192 and 193.

"At the time of initiation, when a devotee fully surrenders unto the service of the Lord, Krsna accepts him to be as good as Himself."

"When the devotee's body is thus transformed into spiritual existence, the devotee, in that transcendental body, renders service to the lotus feet of the Lord."

When it says in the Srimad Bhagavatam Verse that the process of Bhakti, devotional service, dissolves the subtle body does it mean that this transformation take place through the performance of any of the 9 processes of devotional service? Srila Prabhupada explains the first and foremost process of devotional service in his purport to the 2nd Canto, 2nd Chapter, 36th verse of the Srimad Bhagavatam as follows:

“The bhakti-yoga process is practiced by the devotees in different methods like hearing, chanting, remembering, serving the lotus feet of the Lord, worshiping, praying, rendering service in love, becoming friendly, and offering all that one may possess. All nine methods are bona fide methods, and either all of them, some of them or even one of them can bring about the desired result for the sincere devotee. But out of all the nine different methods, the first one, namely hearing, is the most important function in the process of bhakti-yoga. Without hearing sufficiently and properly, no one can make any progress by any of the methods of practice. And for hearing only, all the Vedic literatures are there, compiled by authorized persons like Vyasadeva, who is the powerful incarnation of Godhead.”

The Vedic literatures are there for hearing not reading. Reading alone will not bring about the desired transformation as Srila Prabhupada says:

“To hear and explain them (the revealed scriptures) is more important than reading them. One can assimilate the knowledge of the revealed scriptures only by hearing and explaining”. Srila Prabhupada’s purport to 1:1:6 of the Srimad Bhagavatam

What are the different stages of the development of devotional service and when does one assimilate the knowledge of the revealed scriptures? Srila Prabhupada explains this in the 3rd Canto, 2nd Chapter, 5th verse as follows:


It was so observed by Vidura that Uddhava had all the transcendental bodily changes due to total ecstasy, and he was trying to wipe away tears of separation from his eyes. Thus Vidura could understand that Uddhava had completely assimilated extensive love for the Lord.


There are three different stages of development in devotional service. The first stage is that of following the regulative principles prescribed in the codes of devotional service, the second stage is that of assimilation and realization of the steady condition of devotional service, and the last stage is that of ecstasy symptomized by transcendental bodily expression.

In this purport Srila Prabhupada breaks down the stages of development in Bhakti Yoga. The first stage is vaidhi bhakti in which one strictly follows the regulative principles of devotional service. The second stage is Raganuga Bhakti spontaneous devotional service where one begins the real process of assimilation or transformation of the material to the spiritual and Bhava Bhakti where one becomes steady in Krishna consciousness and has almost zero interest in materiel nature. When one reaches the right stage in the assimilation process by the mercy of the sadhu then one is transformed and achieves the final stage of devotional service Prema Bhakti or ecstatic love of God. Dhira Govinda Prabhu is correct when he says that the divine knowledge received at initiation is received through the heart just as Lord Brahma received it just as the song says you will receive it. However, This transfer of ecstatic love, which is the real process of diksha, cannot take place if the sadhu is not manifest before you as will be explained in the following quotes from Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura:

“By associating with Vaisnavas, saintliness (sadhuta) will manifest in our hearts and sinfulness will completely be removed. When our hearts are clean a ray from the sun of prema will enter. This ray, which enriches our hearts with prema, comes from the heart of a saintly Vaisnava. This is the only way to attain prema and give up pratistha. It is the natural method to become a sadhu. All other ways are fruitless labor. In conclusion attaining ones transcendental nature is non-different from removing one’s temporary material nature.” Pratistha Parivarjana by Thakura Bhaktivinode.

“The nature of Krsna Prema is such that it is only entrusted into the heart, of visuddha bhakta’s of Krsna and it has no other dwelling place. It is passed from one atma to another, just as lightning passes from one cloud to another. Gradually, by associating with Vaisnavas, the prema in the Vaisnava’s heart is naturally transmitted to the heart of the jiva. At that time wicked tendencies are removed from the heart of that jiva and a saintly nature manifests in him. All the exalted qualities that purify the heart and that accompany prema, become manifest. It is therefore our duty to remove the desire for pratistha by taking Sadhu Sanga.” Pratistha Parivarjana by Thakura Bhaktivinode.

These two paragraphs follow the paragraph I quoted above in which Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura states that one cannot obtain prema by studying or discussing shastra, hearing shastra from persons who have not attained prema, nor by performing yoga exercises. It can only come by associating with and hearing the transcendental sound vibration from the lotus lips of the pure devotee. This kind of association and transformation can only happen if the pure devotee is manifesting his pastimes on the planet. If he is not then one cannot get that kind of personal association that will bring about assimilation of transcendental knowledge and transformation of the materiel body into a spiritual body. Taking Sadhu Sangha to remove pratistha or the false egotistical body can only be performed if the sadhu is manifest on the planet at the time you are taking his personal sangha. To think that you can get that kind of transformative sangha without the manifest presence of the sadhu on the planet is in itself false pride and disqualifies one from making any progress on the spiritual path. Srila Prabhupada concurs with this process of diksha as given by Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura in the following verse and purport from the 10th Canto.


Thereafter, accompanied by plenary expansions, the fully opulent Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is all-auspicious for the entire universe, was transferred from the mind of Vasudeva to the mind of Devaki. Devaki, having thus been initiated by Vasudeva, became beautiful by carrying Lord Krsna , the original consciousness for everyone, the cause of all causes, within the core of her heart, just as the east becomes beautiful by carrying the rising moon.


As indicated here by the word manastaù, the Supreme Personality of Godhead was transferred from the core of Vasudeva’s mind or heart to the core of the heart of Devaki. We should note carefully that the Lord was transferred to Devaki not by the ordinary way for a human being, but by diksha, initiation. Thus the importance of initiation is mentioned here. Unless one is initiated by the right person, who always carries within his heart the Supreme Personality of Godhead, one cannot acquire the power to carry the Supreme Godhead within the core of one’s own heart”. 10th Canto, 2nd Chapter, and 18th verse and purport by Srila Prabhupada

Devaki and Vasudeva are sitting in front of each other. Devaki is getting the personal sangha of her diksha guru who is now transferring the ray of Prema the Supreme Personality of Godhead directly into her heart from his heart. This is the real process of diksha, in person, person to person not from a million miles away. Here is an important example that should shed some more light on this point. Narada Muni is Tri Kala Jna. He knows past, present, and future. When Dhruva is looking for Krsna Narada knows it and he goes to that place and initiates him. When Pralahad needs a guru he goes to that place and recites scripture to him. When Vyasadeva is in despair Narada Muni goes there and instructs him. If this transcendental wisdom could be transmitted from a million miles away why didn’t Narada Muni do that? He could already see within his heart what was going on why did he not just send a ray of prema across the universe? Why is he personally flying all over the universe to be personally manifest before the disciple when he initiates and instructs them? Because that is the way that Krishna is transferred from the heart of the sadhu to the heart of the disciple IN PERSON! Both parties have to be manifest before each other to consummate the process otherwise Narada Muni would not be flying all over the universe he would do it from a distance. One must hear the transcendental sound vibration from the lotus lips of the pure devotee when they are manifest before you in your personal presence then you can assimilate the knowledge of scripture and receive diksha otherwise not. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura sums it up best at the end of his article Thakura Bhaktivinode that we have previously quoted in the article as follows:

“In order to be put on the track of the Absolute, listening to the words of the pure devotee is absolutely necessary. The spoken word of the Absolute is the Absolute. It is only the Absolute Who can give Himself away to the constituents of His power. The Absolute appears to the listening ear of the conditioned soul in the form of the Name on the lips of the sadhu. This is the key to the whole position. The words of Thakura Bhaktivinoda direct the empiric pedant to discard his wrong method and inclination on the threshold of the real quest of the Absolute. If the pedant still chooses to carry his errors into the Realm of the Absolute Truth he only marches by a deceptive bye-path into the regions of darker ignorance by his arrogant study of the scriptures. The method offered by Thakura Bhaktivinoda is identical with the object of the quest. The method is not really grasped except by the grace of the pure devotee. The arguments, indeed, are these. But they can only corroborate, but can never be a substitute for, the word from the living source of the Truth who is no other than the pure devotee of Krsna, the concrete Personal Absolute.” Thakura Bhaktivinode By Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura


If the goal of initiation into Krishna Consciousness is to achieve Krishna Prema and Krishna’s Darshan then this is the method, hearing the transcendental sound vibration from the lotus lips of the pure devotee through Personal Sadhu Sangha. There is no other way, There is no other way, There is no other way!

Now I did not want to increase the size of this article so I did not include the answers to your questions about the audio tapes, the video tapes, the initiations by mail, and the devotees who were initiated by Srila Prabhupada and never met Srila Prabhupada etc. I have answers to all of those questions and I will answer them as they are asked so as not to increase the bulk of this present article.

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