Inside the guru hoax meltdown: An ISKCON guru confesses all!
BackTo Prabhupada, Issue 29: When an artificial guru system is concocted, based not on spiritual principles, but rather on the pursuit and expansion of power, infighting and chaos will automatically result.
When one disobeys the orders of the bona fide spiritual master by usurping his position, disciples, assets and worship, only failure, chaos and deviation will result as Srila Prabhupada has repeatedly warned us:
“Our mission is to serve (…) Not that you take the place of the guru. That is nonsense, very dangerous. Then everything will be spoiled. As soon as you become ambitious to take the place of guru – gurusu nara matih. That is the material disease.”
(Srila Prabhupada Conversation, April 20th,1977)
“And as soon as he learns the Guru Maharaja is dead, “Now I am so advanced that I can kill my guru and I become guru.” Then he’s finished.”
(Srila Prabhupada Conversation, August 16th,1976)
As proof that Srila Prabhupada’s warnings above are applicable to ISKCON’s current unauthorised GBC elected guru hoaxer system, below we present ample evidence from one of ISKCON’s own current GBC voted in gurus, HH Mahavishnu Swami (“MVS”). In letters MVS wrote to the GBC and others, he offers an insight into the guru hoax meltdown, and also reveals his own personal meltdown in trying to pose as a successor guru to Srila Prabhupada.
The extracts in the tinted panels below, unless otherwise specified, are from letters written by MVS.
ISKCON compared to the great anti-Krishna demon Kamsa
“I know there are the “guru fall down and boiling down the milk” counter arguments to the above and maybe this dialectic will just go on forever even as ISKCON dries up as it becomes more and more a heavy-handed Kamsa-ised organised religion smothering spontaneous devotional creepers right and left.”
ISKCON compared to the great anti-Krishna demon Kamsa
“So did he (Srila Prabhupada) really later on want us to put a brake on expanding to “at least maintain” what he gave us? Excuse me please but I feel that with this mental laxitude step by step ISKCON will just get more “Kamsa-ised” into yet another defunct organised religion bogged down in its own politics trying (very sincerely, of course), to just “at least maintain”.
Fallen, frustrated and castrated ISKCON gurus
“…in UK (for instance) the ISKCON Managing Council or its sub-committee (presumably understandably acting in a controlling reactive protective mood after so many of its own past UK local initiating guru falldowns) has set up initiation standards and procedures without even inviting input from all the ISKCON Diksa Gurus who initiate disciples in the UK thus making unrealistic standards and procedures which foster bad feelings both from aspiring candidates and from frustrated (castrated?) visiting and resident gurus.”
Unaccountable GBC gurus and GBC spies
“..the GBC authority credibility is being undermined because ISKCON’s published Law Book Initiation standards are being openly flouted as they are being either made locally more restrictive and discouraging (as in the case of UK standards), or being adjusted according to time and circumstances by unaccountable GBC Gurus or ISKCON gurus “out of GBC range” of GBC spies.”
Unwilling guru apologists
“In the early days in expanding ISKCON Srila Prabhupada was very personal and lenient but in UK for instance I have heard complaints from my fellow-ISKCON gurus that the institutional standards set by ISKCON UK are off-putting straight jackets for aspirants seeking personal shelter. The gurus themselves find themselves having to unwillingly become apologists for ISKCON’s rigid impersonal policies.”
Disunity and fragmentation
“If ISKCON instituted kamsa-blanket centralised initiation standards are imposed on a zone by its big established temples then budding devotional communities will prefer to develop legally outside of ISKCON’s legal jurisdiction creating the disunity and fragmentation of ISKCON, (as in Brighton, UK).”
ISKCON has no trust of its voted in gurus
“It even seems that the ISKCON “establishment” has no trust of gurus and that is also not so surprising because of ISKCON gurus track records in the past.”
In all the preceding entries, MVS details the power struggle going on between the elected gurus and ISKCON’s management authorities, and the resultant chaos and breakdown. His criticisms are more harsh than whatever has been on the pages of BTP, as he compared ISKCON to the demon Kamsa.
Below, MVS turns his attention to his own personal failings as a GBC elected guru:
“I want to apologise for my seriously having misguided the devotees on this year’s East African Festival Tour (23rd January – 22nd February 2008) [...] So I am feeling very ashamed and regretful that I caused this to happen. l was not fit as the spiritual mentor of the Festival team. It is now obvious that my hippiesh upbringing’s attitudes are still not cleansed from my heart. So I need to rectify my standard of devotional service at all costs.”
Losing the faith of “disciples”
“I feel the need to apologise to you both for dealing inconsiderately and pushing your tolerance so much that you lost faith in me as your spiritual master and ISKCON. I was not concerned enough about your welfare to act appropriately.”
Unable to look after “disciples”
“I can also hardly look after my about 100 disciples properly [...] So I do not want to be an embarrassment may consider visiting Russia again provided I am invited and I am allowed to collect donations. But I doubt if that will ever happen. Even if it did I will be frightened of getting committed to having more Russian disciples.”
A bona fide and authorised spiritual master, by definition, can never mislead or give wrong advice and thus hinder a soul’s journey back to Godhead:
“According to sastra, the duty of the guru is to take the disciple back home, back to Godhead. If he is unable to do so and instead hinders the disciple in going back to Godhead, he should not be a guru.”
(Srimad Bhagavatam 8.20.1, purport)
Yet, in the entries above, MVS apologises for doing just that!
Chastised by juniors
Below, MVS also reveals that he was chastised for his misbehaviour by two devotees.
“He rightfully complained to our ISKCON authorities in UK that an ISKCON sannyasi had done such a thing. Kripamoya and Praghosa Prabhus in the UK brought me to task and I began to realise the negligence and foolishness of my actions.
Then after further realisation and regret and on their advice, I sent a marriage annulment letter to the parties concerned. I stated in that letter that as the couple were not unmarried the marriage I had conducted was not authorised morally or legally and therefore it was being annulled by me.”
At the time of going to press, neither of the two devotees mentioned are, unlike MVS, “gurus” or sannyasis (renunciants), and are therefore, according to ISKCON, MVS’s spiritual juniors.
So not only is MVS acting, on his own admission, without moral or legal authority, but he had to be chastised by two juniors before he realised his bogus actions! Clearly, he cannot be an empowered bona fide Vaishnava guru since a bona fide guru can never be disciplined, counselled or corrected:
“It is an offense to consider an empowered Vaisnava an object of disciplinary action. It is offensive to try to give him advice or to correct him.”
(Nectar of Instruction, Text 7, purport)
We have copiously documented, in several issues of BTP, the philosophical U-turns and climbdowns by ISKCON’s GBC and gurus and their lip service to the IRM’s program of promoting Srila Prabhupada as the real guru of ISKCON. Now, in addition to all the above, MVS also decides to join the “agree with the IRM” program:
Srila Prabhupada is the real guru, not me
“I may have given you diksa but our pre-eminent siksa guru is of course Srila Prabhupada not me. He is still fully living in his instructions. You must take advantage of them and become his emissary.”
Here MVS admits that Srila Prabhupada and not he, is giving siksha (spiritual instruction). MVS claims that he himself is giving diksha (spiritual initiation), but even this claim is bogus as the GBC itself agrees with the IRM that siksha is the “principal active ingredient of diksa”:
“Such uplifting knowledge is called divya jnana, and its transmission is called siksa.This divya jnana is the principal active ingredient of diksa.”
(GBC Resolution No.404, 1999)
And MVS admits he is not supplying this “principal active ingredient of diksa”.
Thus, Srila Prabhupada is the only diksha or initiating guru in ISKCON, not MVS or anyone else – something he and the GBC should have realised by now after singing every day for the past 30 years or more to Srila Prabhupada during the Guru-puja prayers that he is the one delivering this “divya-jnana”!
Further confirming the IRM’s “ritvik” position that the guru (Srila Prabhupada) does not need to physically meet disciples to initiate them, MVS admits in another letter:
“Srila Prabhupada had disciples who he had never seen physically.”
But still wants to play guru
Of course, the desire to be worshipped as good as God in imitation of the fully authorised and bona fide guru Srila Prabhupada, is just too strong to resist:
“My Vyasa Puja 2010 went off quite well. Late last night 11/2/10 in Hotel Amical, Bunia, DR Congo. Had short talks, my foot washing & guru puja and arati & pioneering feast prepared of imported Egyptian full cream milk & imported Italian spaghetti.”
(MVS SMS text, February 12th, 2010)
“I personally have a niyamag-raha trait and try and go strictly by the ISKCON Lawbook and the prevailing local initiation standards for fear of getting censored and defrocked so I really want a more flexible straightjacket to live in as a dreaded naughty-boy ISKCON Initiating guru.”
Thus, in addition to ISKCON’s “guru wars” documented in previous Back To Prabhupada issues, we now see that “Guru GBC” wars can be added to the power struggles going an in ISKCON.
Previously, in BTP 14, we published the equally stunning revelations of ISKCON GBC guru and Sannyasa Minister HH Prahladananda Swami in our article, “ISKCON guru exposes his own guru system”. And in BTP 20, we quoted yet another GBC member, Badrinarayan Das, stating:
“Having gurus crash and burn every few years is the main cause of ISKCON’s diminished reputation and strength and I don’t see what we have put in place to break this pattern.”
It seems as if ISKCON’s GBC and voted-in gurus can’t help but condemn the bogus system they themselves have invented; and yet the desire to replace Srila Prabhupada is so irresistible that even though they now agree in theory with the IRM’s invincible philosophical position, they will still keep the practice of their unauthorised guru system and attendant worship intact! Srila Prabhupada speaks of this tendency as follows:
“That is the difficulty. Everyone sees that, “Some way or other, I become guru. Then so many persons will offer me respect. Somehow or other, create some situation. Then I become guru. [...] This is going on. Not bona fide guru. [...] Somehow or other become popular and become guru. This is going on.”
(Srila Prabhupada Conversation, May 2nd, 1976)
It is clear that the GBC’s guru hoax system is facing serious meltdown, and we hope it is now only a question of when, not if, they adopt the IRM’s position and at last reinstate Srila Prabhupada as ISKCON’s only diksha guru.