Krishna.org CT02-100

Published on July 15th, 2014 | by Madhudvisa dasa | Full size image

59

Is Krishna.org seperate from ISKCON?

Hare Krsna.Please explain to me what does ritvik mean.I have heard that you are separate from ISKCON and that you follow the ritvik tradition. Haribol — Manfred

Dear Manfred

Hare Krishna! All glories to Srila Prabhupada!

Thank you very much for your letter. We are not separate from ISKCON. We are only following Srila Prabhupada, that is all. ISKCON is supposed to be following Prabhupada. So to the extent that ISKCON is not following Prabhupada we have nothing to do with that. But here you will find the real ISKCON, the real ISKCON is Prabhupada’s movement, not someone else’s.

Ritvik means “priest.” Prabhupada established the “ritvik” system in ISKCON in 1970 when he started to appoint devotee “priests” to perform the initiation ceremonies for new devotees on his behalf. Prabhupada extended this system over the years until July 9th, 1977 when he empowered his “Ritvik representatives of the Acharya” (Prabhupada’s words to describe the 11 devotees who later claimed to be Srila Prabhupada’s successors and to be pure devotees on the same level as Srila Prabhupada) to accept new devotees on his behalf, chant on their beads, select a name for them, and enter their name into the book of his disciples without Srila Prabhupada having any physical intervention in the process at all. Prabhupada ordered these 11 devotees to accept disciples on his behalf. So the disciples they accepted would be Prabhupada’s disciples, not their own. From July 9th, 1977 Prabhupada established a system that would enable these “Ritvik representatives of the Acharya” to continue to accept disciple on Srila Prabhupada’s behalf thus Prabhupada could continue to accept disciples without any need for his physical presence. This letter of July 9th was produced as a result of a question to Srila Prabhupada by Satsvarupa who asked Prabhupada, “Can you please tell us what will happen with the initiations in ISKCON, particularly when you are no longer physically present?” And Prabhupada’s reply was the July 9rh letter appointing 11 devotees as “Ritvik representatives of the acharya,” making it very clear [stating it 3 times] that the devotees initiated by these men would be his [Prabhupada's] disciples not their own disciples.

On Srila Prabhupada’s disappearance from our material vision these 11 men claimed that Prabhupada had appointed them as his successors and the only way to get to Prabhupada and Krishna was through them, that Prabhupada was dead and gone and could no longer accept disciples. They did not accept disciples on behalf of Prabhupada. They claimed to have the same qualifications as Srila Prabhupada themselves and accepted their own disciples preaching that “Prabhupada is dead, now you have to take shelter of me…”

However, it is the history now, all these so-called “pure devotees” have fallen down and left ISKCON now except one who does not even chant his rounds on a regular basis. Most have fallen into all sorts of degradation and sinful activities. So the whole thing was a scam. They were not pure devotees, they were not appointed by Srila Prabhupada as his successors and they have destroyed the whole movement as so many devotees took initiation from them and their spiritual lives were very much devastated on finding out the guru they surrendered to was not actually a pure devotee of Krishna, and not able to take them back home, back to Godhead

The whole thing was a huge disaster and if you now travel around the ISKCON temples you will find them deserted, practically no one is living in them and only on Sunday a few devotees come to the temples and in many places this has degenerated into simply a group of Hindus, Indians, who come to the temple more to associate with the other Indians than to serve Krishna and Srila Prabhupada….

So we, at www.krishna.org, are simply followers of Srila Prabhupada and are simply repeating the teachings of Srila Prabhupada. Any differences of opinion ISKCON devotees may have with us are not differences of opinion with us, they are differences of opinion with Prabhupada and unfortunately, in so many ways, today’s ISKCON is disobeying Srila Prabhupada’s orders.

So, in summary, we are not presenting anything except the teachings of Srila Prabhupada, if someone does not like what we are presenting, they do not like Prabhupada’s teachings. That is the real situation.

To understand these things you need to hear from Srila Prabhupada. We have all original Prabhupada books plus the Prabhuapda audio recordings in MP3 format plus the Prabhupada DVDs at www.krishna.tv

I suggest you get Prabhupada’s original books and read them, get the Prabhupada MP3s and listen to all his classes, conversations, morning walks, interviews, press conferences, etc., and watch the more than 50 hours of film and video we have of Srila Prabhupada on the Prabhupada DVDs.

So we are providing you with direct access to Srila Prabhupada and we are letting you know that Srila Prabhupada is living still, he is with us, and you can get direct personal association with Srila Prabhupada by reading his original books, by listening to the MP3s and by watching the DVDs. We are providing this direct access to Srila Prabhupada. We are not saying anything. Simply we are giving you access to Prabhupada and letting you know that he is there, he is living and if you take advantage of his vani, his instructions, he can guide you and help you make advancement in Krishna consciousness.

So my advice is that you take full advantage of this access to Srila Prabhupada by purchasing Prabhupada’s original books, the MP3s and DVDs from www.krishna.tv and simply hear from Srila Prabhupada yourself. That is all I am asking you to do. Simply hear from Srila Prabhupada, follow the instructions you hear from Srila Prabhupada, that is all we are asking.

If you want to make advancement in spiritual life you have to become very intelligent. So many have been mislead by ISKCON in the past into believing that Srila Prabhupada is dead and that they have to accept someone else who is not a pure devotee of Krishna as their spiritual master. It is a lie that ISKCON has been preaching since 1977 and a lie that has caused the spiritual death of hundreds of thousands of sincere devotees. So don’t fall into that trap. My simple request to you is that you please read Srila Prabhupada’s original books, listen to his classes on the MP3s and watch him on the DVDs and follow. Chant at least 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mantra daily, strictly follow the four regulative principles: No illicit sex, no meat eating, no gambling and no intoxication, and you will discover for yourself what Krishna consciousness really is and you will also discover that Srila Prabhupada is not at all dead, but he is living still in sound and quite capable of giving you all the guidance and support you need to make advancement in spiritual life.

Even the ISKCON devotees will agree that ISKCON is facing so many problems, and why? Because they preach to new people like you that you can not have a direct relationship with Srila Prabhupada, that Srila Prabhupada can not be your guru, that you need to accept someone else, who is not a pure devotee, as your guru. This is a lie. These are not the teachings of Srila Prabhupada and we do not have anything whatsoever to do with people who preach like this. People who preach like this are not part of ISKCON, they are not Prabhupada’s disicples, they are disciples of Kali. So you have to be careful to find the real ISKCON. The real ISKCON is Prabhupada’s movement, the place you go where they encourage you to hear from Srila Prabhuapda and take shelter of Srila Prabhupada, that is ISKCON. If you go to a place and they tell you you have to take shelter of someone else, not Prabhupada, that place is not ISKCON…

So the final conclusion is we are not at all seperate from Srila Prabhupada and his ISKCON. The so-called devotees in ISKCON who claim Prabhupada is no longer available and can no longer accept disciples are envous and are seperate from the real ISKCON. The real ISKCON is Prabhupada’s preaching mission.

You may be happy to know that the vast majority of devotees in ISKCON are very much aware that Srila Prabhuapda is with us, he is living and most of them know it well that Srila Prabhupada is their spiritual master also. Still there are some envious demons who continute to claim, “Prabhupada can no longer accept disciples.” However we should simply neglect them, don’t take them seriously. They will simply burn up in the fire of the reactions to their envy and offences to the followers of Srila Prabhupada.

Please write with all your questions and doubts and I will try to answer as best I can.

Hope you are well.

Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

Madhudvisa dasa

Letter to: All G.B.C., All Temple Presidents

Vrindaban
9 July, 1977

To All G.B.C., and Temple Presidents

Dear Maharajas and Prabhus,

Please accept my humble obeisances at your feet. Recently when all of the GBC members were with His Divine Grace in Vrndavana, Srila Prabhupada indicated that soon He would appoint some of His senior disciples to act as “ritvik–representative of the acarya, for the purpose of performing initiations, both first initiation and second initiation. His Divine Grace has so far given a list of eleven disciples who will act in that capacity:

  • His Holiness Kirtanananda Swami
  • His Holiness Satsvarupa dasa Gosvami
  • His Holiness Jayapataka Swami
  • His Holiness Tamala Krsna Gosvami
  • His Holiness Hrdayananda Gosvami
  • His Holiness Bhavananda Gosvami
  • His Holiness Hamsaduta Swami
  • His Holiness Ramesvara Swami
  • His Holiness Harikesa Swami
  • His Grace Bhagavan dasa Adhikari
  • His Grace Jayatirtha dasa Adhikari

In the past Temple Presidents have written to Srila Prabhupada recommending a particular devotee’s initiation. Now that Srila Prabhupada has named these representatives, Temple Presidents may henceforward send recommendation for first and second initiation to whichever of these eleven representatives are nearest their temple. After considering the recommendation, these representatives may accept the devotee as an initiated disciple of Srila Prabhupada by giving a spiritual name, or in the case of second initiation, by chanting on the Gayatri thread, just as Srila Prabhupada has done. The newly initiated devotees are disciples of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupad, the above eleven senior devotees acting as His representative. After the Temple President receives a letter from these representatives giving the spiritual name or the thread, he can perform the fire yajna in the temple as was being done before. The name of a newly initiated disciple should be sent by the representative who has accepted him or her to Srila Prabhupada, to be included in His Divine Grace’s “Initiated Disciples” book.

Hoping this finds you all well.

Your servant,
Tamala Krsna Gosvami

Approved: A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami

[Srila Prabhupada's signature appears on the original]

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59 Responses to Is Krishna.org seperate from ISKCON?

  1. mark says:

    dear madhudvisa das, please accept my obeisances.
    i love krishna.org, and it is my home page on all browsers that i use. it always reminds me about Prabhupad and Krishna.
    Forgive me, but i wanna be honest with you…few words
    about new look of this website : it is horrible, why u used dark grey colors as a base, it is a tama-guna color!, why don’t u use instead orange as it was before, or any other color in sattva_guna? the site looks like a grave yard, sorry for saying this but that is my impression, very dark, and not pleasant to senses, like krishna suppose to be and always is. and the home page banner, you really should of thinking something better, then this one, it looks not finished very dark and not pleasant. a lot of empty dark space left without meaning. FIRE YOUR WEBDESIGNER, HE HAS NO IMAGINATION OR CLUE!

    HARE KRISHNA!

    • admin says:

      Hare Krishna Mark

      Thanks for the honest comments. The web designer is unfortunately me, so I can not fire myself.

      Yes, it is not finished. I apologize for that. I should not have made it live yesterday until it was finished. I was thinking if I make it live it will force me to finish it and I may get some suggestions like yours.

      I agree with your points about the color scheme and will try something else. Check out the site in a few hours, hopefully it will look better, and keep on posting here and let me know what you think as it develops. It is currently a “work in process…”

  2. Haribol Madhudvisa Prabhu,
    I just wanted to say that I think your new layout is great! Much better than the last one.
    Hare Krishna,
    YS, G dasa

  3. MDS says:

    Hare Krsna,
    Dear Madhudvisa Prabhu.

    this is a good articles for me as a new in Krsna Consciousness.
    but I have read another article in another website
    It is a contradistinction
    since i am a new one, i got completely confused about the information/story/history. which one is the truth?

    just basic question: how can the parampara system goes on if no pure devotee or guru does not accept the disciples for him self?

    please forgive me i make a mistake. i just a new one.

    Hare Krsna.

    • I do not know anything about articles on other websites. Only Krishna.org and Prabhupada´s books.

      You will find other websites contain so much speculation and information that does not come from Srila Prabhupada. This makes them useless.

      The Param-para does not go on by disciples accepting disciples for themself.

      The Param-para can only be carried forward by pure devotees of Krishna. Devotees who are empowered by Krishna to spread the Hare Krishna mantra all over the world. Such great devotees are very, very rare. As we have seen in ISKCON where practically every guru has turned out to be not qualified to be a guru and this has devastated ISKCON and the lives of so many of the sincere devotees who surrendered to these bogus gurus.

      So the point is to find a pure devotee and surrender to him and serve him. Physical presence is not important. The relationship between the disciple and the spiritual master is based on hearing and submission and following the orders. So one can still submissively hear and follow the orders of Srila Prabhupada. And if one actually makes the orders of Srila Prabhupada his life and soul then and only then does he become a disciple of Srila Prabhuapda. And this does not require the physical presence of Srila Prabhupada.

      Prabhupada is living in his books, and other recorded vani.

      So please take advantage of Srila Prabhupada´s association in this way and chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  4. Amit Huria says:

    Hare Krishna!

    I have started to try & learn about Krishna conciousness few days back, can you convey if there have been changes to hindi edition of Bhagvat Gita As it is also. Also, is it a good time to get associated with ISKCON and become its member. There is a temple construction going on in Noida, India, do you have any idea about the guru who is leading this.
    I am a conditioned soul confused by the present situation of the Hare Krishna movement.

    Thanks to help in answering my queries.

    Jai Srila Prabhupad Ji

    Amit

  5. Winnie Wong says:

    Dear Madhudvisa dasa

    Please accept my humble obeisances.

    Thank you very much for your information and “what happened to the Hare Krishnas”, which let us understand more this Krishna movement’s history and situation. And clear many doubts of many people which we are not as lucky as the ones that can get close to Srila Prabhupada in those days.

    I can now watch and listen to Srila Prabhupada directly who I know I can trust and knowing by listen to his words is the correct way to understand God, absolute truth.

    Hare Krishna!

    Sorry for my bad english.
    Winnie

  6. Mark says:

    Dear Madhudvisa dasa

    Hare Krsna! Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada!

    I enJOY your site very much and have read much on other sites about the ritvik “debate”. Although I have researched this so much I am still very confused as to who one can go to for initiation. I agree with you in that Prabhupad wanted the ritvik system, but don’t know of anyone who is qualified and who follows this and is doing these initiations. I have been chanting, following the regulative principles, and going to temple for many years. I refuse to be initiated by anyone other than Prabhupad’s representatives making me one of his disciples. I dare not bring this up at my local temple as the temple president is a top GBC man. I realize that Prabhupad is my Spiritual Master already, but also have the desire for the formality as a sign of my support for what Prabhupad wanted. What a mess not following what Prabhupad wanted has caused. The GBC has hurt the spiritual growth of many. Any information you could give me would be most appreciated.

    Your servant,

    Mark

  7. sanjay sunny says:

    hare krishna
    Can you please tell what should the daily routine be for a man who wants to get closer to lord Krishna.

    Many thanks
    Sanjay Sunny

  8. Rakesh Radia says:

    Haribol prabhus and mataji’s.

    All glories to his Divine Grace A C Bhaktivedenta Prabhupada, our spiritual master.

    4 years ago in 2006 I went to Bhaktivedanta Manor in Watford, I was given a copy of the Gita by a devotee and subsequently went on to read the whole book, I cried on a number of occasions as I was so happy to have been instructed by the mercy of Srila Prabhupada and Lord Caitanya on the goal of life. Unfortunately I became to absorbed in maya and became another fallen soul in the age of Kali, although i am still a very fallen and impure soul who has no business in trying to serve, I was and still am convinced that my calling is to serve our beloved spiritual master, Srila Prabhupada. I have since changed my ways and am in the process of following the instructions of Srila Prabhupada, whilst at ISKCON, I purchased a number of Srila Prabhupada books such as Bhagavad Gita, Srimad Bhagvatam and others, I am writing because I am perplexed as to what to do. I read that ISKCON is corrupt and not serving Srila Prabhupada as he wished and according to sastra. All I want to do is to serve Krishna via the mercy of the spiritual master, my own inclination is to read Srila Prabupada books and chant and follow the 4 regulative principles, however I also want to do my very best to serve the Instructions of Srila Prabhupada. How can one do this, are you devotees at Krishna.org no longer member of ISKCON, if not how are you furthering the mission of Srila Prabhupada.

    Your humble servant

    Rakesh Radia

    • sarva says:

      Hare Krishna Rakesh,
      I’m so glad to hear of your sincere committment to advancing along the path of real happiness, Krishna consciousness. That path is quite individual in nature as it has little to do with institutions/organizations. The institution will not save us from repeated birth and death, neither do we receive enlightenment, or spiritual enlightenment from an institution. I would draw your attention to one of many beautiful slokas from Srimad Bhagavad Gita, As It Is that confirm this truth. Lord Krishna gives His infallible formula for making spirtual progress. In the eighth chapter He said something very important to Arjuna, “tasmat sarvesh kaleshu mam anusmara yudhhya ca” (Bg. 8.7) He told Arjuna to carry out his prescribed duty of fighting, but at the same time fix his mind and intellegence on Me (Krishna). Most of us work in some way or other and we engage the fruits of that work to pay bills, raise children, pay mortgages, etc. When we do all of that, as we are obliged by our previous life’s work, and at the same time always remember how Lord Krishna is always with us, how He actually maintains us, and how He is waiting for us to take serious intrest in Him and His service, then by that process of devotion the Lord says,”you will attain me without a doubt” Where does the institution fit in to the picture?? No doubt we can become insired in our spiritual life by good association, but one should choose such association cautiously always comparing what is heard anywhere to the perfect example and insrtucions of the Lord’s pure devotee, Srila Prabhupada.

  9. SucittoV says:

    Krishna is within, and from within All will be revealed to the ernest seeker.

    Worry not who is who and what is what- these are only words, concepts, impermanent.

    Keep your awareness on the Self, on Krishna, and all will be revealed.

    • Guy says:

      Dear devotee,
      Totally agree with you about surrender to the self.
      Regards guy.

  10. Hare Krsna madhuvisa prabhu. My name is Ananda Vardhani.
    I grew up all my life on watseka ave. But now live in Lancaster ca. I have some questions and was hoping I may contact you by phone. I have a small preaching program and my deities are the same size as rukmini dwarkadish. I want to spread krsna consciousness but could use some advise. Radhe Shyam.

  11. Lee says:

    Hare Krishna Madhuvisa Prabhu Please except my humble obedience. All Glories To Srila Prabhupada.
    I would like to get initiated as a desciple of Srila Prabhupada and recive a spritual name. I have been following the 4 regulations and chanting 16 rounds. I dont live near a temple, so how does one go about this. I feel that I need to become initated to further my path on Krishna consiousness. I have been giving a name of Hayagriva Das but just for a Bhagavad Gita As It Is online course and would like that to be my true spirtual name, but want to be a desciple of Srila Prabhupada. Sorry if this wrong of me to ask but my heart feels like it is something that has to be done.
    Your servent,
    Lee (Hayagriva Das)

    • Hare Krishna Lee

      Formal initiation is not very important. Actually becoming a disciple of Srila Prabhupada is important. Prabhupada’s way of accepting disciples was that they would join a temple run by his disciples and be trained up under the direction of his disciples and then when the temple president considered that a particular student was qualified to accept initiation from Srila Prabhupada the Temple President would write a letter to Srila Prabhupada recommending that particular disciple for initiation. So this system is no longer functioning therefor the formal initiation process from Srila Prabhupada is really not available at the moment. But that does not matter. We pray every morning that it is by the mercy of Krishna that we get the spiritual master and by the mercy of the spiritual master we get Krishna and without pleasing the spiritual master we can not make any advancement. So your business as Srila Prabhupada’s disciple is to surrender to him, serve him, and please him. Then if you can do this your life is successful. Formal initiation and a ‘spiritual name’ are not really very important. So many people get this formal initiation and spiritual name but never actually surrender to Srila Prabhupada or Krishna.

      So the actual surrender is what you have to work on and Krishna is in your heart and He knows your desires. You do not have to ask Krishna or anyone else for your desires. Krishna already knows them and He will arrange for them to happen when He thinks the time is right. So just surrender to Srila Prabhupada and dedicate your life 24 hours a day to serving him, that is what disciple means…

      Remember that Srila Prabhupada says: “If you love me distribute my books”. So if you really want to please Srila Prabhupada why not dedicate your life to distributing Srila Prabhupada’s books? Become one of the biggest distributors of Srila Prabhupada’s original books in the world. Then Prabhupada will be very happy with you and surely Krishna will make some arrangement so you can get formal initiation from Srila Prabhupada. You have to do something, practical service. Chanting 16 rounds and following the four regulative principles is just the bare minimum basic prerequisites. In addition to this you have to have some service. That is what Krishna consciousness is DEVOTIONAL SERVICE…

      So our prayer really should not be ‘give me a spiritual name’ but ‘Krishna and Prabhupada please engage me in your SERVICE…’

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  12. Uma Sridhar says:

    Hare Krishna!

    Pranam Swamiji,

    Through Krishna.org, you are doing a real service to Krishna and Srila Prabhupada posting useful articles and bringing awareness about “The real Krishna Conciousness”. I salute you Swamiji, as you have mentioned, though, Sri Prabhupada is not physically present, he is living/guiding us through his books. At present, I have only one book of Prabhupada “The journey of self discovery”.

    Whenever I am in distress, my mind refuse to do chanting/prayer, ie.why God fearing people like me are always facing trouble in life. I read his book and I get boost and build up strong faith in Lord Krishna.

    As Prabhupada says, “We are all puppets in his hand, he has brought us in this world to dance and make us dance as he like. I am deeply touched by his prayer, as a great devotee, Guru Sri Prabhupada says, “Krishna, I have no devotion, nor do I have any knowledge, but I have strong faith in the holy name of ‘Krishna”. This is called total surrender/faith to Krishna.

    In this way, our Guru Prabhupada guide us whatever situation we may be facing in this life, we should not discourage and keep engage ourselves in spiritual practice.

    I request you to Keep on posing mails based on Sri Prabhupada’s teachings which will be useful for people like us who have not exposed to Gurudev’s teachings.

    Hare Krishna

    Uma Sridhar

    • Hare Krishna Uma

      Please get more of Srila Prabhupada’s books and read them.

      You can get a very nice collection of Prabhupada’s books here:

      http://krishnastore.com/prabhupada-library-h-krishna-1734.html

      If you do not have the money post your mailing address here and I will send you the books.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  13. Uma Sridhar says:

    Hare Krishna!

    Pranam Prabhuji,

    I find no words to say thanks for rendering kindness towards me. Belong to lower middle class family, I am able to view/ visit your site in office only. I will never forget your kind help in my life time. In my family, I am the only person who is following Krishna Conciousness. I alone do puja, visit temple nobody in my family is interested to accompany me. This however, encourage me to worship Krishna more seriously than before.

    I feel blessed, Krishna is offering me through you.

    Once again thank you very much for your kind help.

    Hare Krishna

    UMA SRIDHAR

    • Hare Krishna Uma

      I am sending. It should arrive in about two weeks.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  14. Uma Sridhar says:

    Hare Krishna!

    Pranam Swamiji,

    Thank you very much Swamiji for kind help. I will confirm it after I receive the same.

    Hare Krishna

    Uma Sridhar

  15. Uma Sridhar says:

    Hare Krishna

    Pranam Swamiji,

    I received books (Yesterday) on 9th July. I expected a couple of books from you but I am glad to see almost a book shop sent by you. Its priceless and unforgettable. On getting these valuable books I feel blessed.

    Moreover, I will distribute the introductory books (about ISKON and Lord Krishna small booklet) among my aquaintee will hopefully create a sense of humanity and devotion among the people.

    Once again I thank you for sending Sri Gurudev Prabhupada’s books.

    Hare Krishna

    Uma Sridhar

  16. PETER GOODALL says:

    Hari Krishna,
    What are your comments on http://www.equip.org/articles/inside-iskcon/ . Because of it I think it’s why you fell out with the
    main organisation ISKCON . I don’t believe in Christianity’s eternal
    hellfire and damnation . Reincarnation is just and fair . According to ISKCON even demons can get liberated eg . if they attack Krishna .
    According to ISKCON , it’s not aeons of reincarnations as the
    Christians think .
    Please comment . Hari Bol .

    • Hare Krishna Peter

      Yes. ISKCON is really sick as the link you give suggests. It is true. ISKCON does all the bad things people say and a whole lot more. These are all symptoms that ISKCON has disobeyed the orders of Srila Prabhupada in so many ways and gone against the mission of Srila Prabhupada and they attack anyone who actually tries to follow Srila Prabhupada. It is all very, very sick. They can not do anything good because their basic principle is “Srila Prabhupada is dead, you need a living guru…”

      But there is no need to be bothered with ISKCON. Srila Prabhupada not dead, he is available to us all and we do not need the help of ISKCON.

      As far as the eternal damnation of Christianity that is not correct. God is not like that. He loves us and always wants us to come back home, back to Godhead. But God has given us a little independence so He does not force us to serve Him. We have the option of trying to enjoy in the material world. Still realistically we are practically stuck in the material world eternally. And the material world is really Hell. Different planets are better or worse. Earth is in the middle so you can go up to heavenly planets or down to hellish planets from here. But everywhere in the material world there is birth, old age, disease and death. This can not be avoided by anyone. Even Lord Brahma who is the topmost living entity in the material world also gets old, gets sick and when the whole universe is eventually annihilated Lord Brahma also dies. So this constant repetition of birth and death in the material world could be called eternal damnation. There is really no way out, the only way out is if we become so very fortunate to get the association of a pure devotee of Krishna and we are intelligent enough to surrender to him and accept him as our spiritual master and serve him. It is only by the mercy of a pure devotee of Krishna that it is possible to break this practically eternal cycle of birth, old age, disease and death in the material world.

      And yes, Krishna is very merciful, even if a demon is constantly thinking of Krishna and certainly if a demon is killed by Krishna he gets liberation. Still it is not so common to get the the chance to be killed by Krishna also…

      The point is there is no way out of the material world by our own strength. The only way out is by the mercy of a pure devotee of Krishna and that chance is very, very rare. So now we have the chance to associate with Srila Prabhupada, a pure devotee of Krishna, and serve him. This is a very special and very rare opportunity and we must take full advantage of this.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  17. PETER GOODALL says:

    Hare Krishna ,
    I would like you all to Google, The Reluctant Messenger, Hebrews
    9:27 Does Not Disprove Reincarnation . The Reluctant Messenger says
    that it is quoted out of context . The url is :
    http://reluctant-messenger.com/reincarnation-Hebrews9-27.htm
    The Christians quote that verse as their main arguememt against
    reincarnation . Thank you for your previous cooments Mahudvisaji .
    Hari Bol .

  18. Aihua says:

    hello, i have a question about getting initiated. some years ago, i met someone from iskcon who is going to many countries initiating disciples. he always says that one to have a spiritual master and submit to that master. i felt sad because i live very far from a temple community and so i couldn’t get initiated since he says i have to be a regular member of a temple community, then he can initiate me.

    can you enlighten me on this? i have been and continue to read Srila Prabhupada’s books…

    thank you

    • Initiation is not such a cheap thing. Firstly one has to be a pure devotee of Krishna to be capable of guiding anyone back home back to Godhead and there are very, very few pure devotees of Krishna. Such a great soul is very rare. So you have Prabhupada in his books. If you associate with Srila Prabhupada by reading his books and if you follow the instructions you find Srila Prabhupada giving you while you read his books then you will have your spiritual master, Srila Prabhupada.

      You have to be very, very, very careful with these ISKCON ‘gurus’ traveling around the world collecting disciples. We have seen historically they are almost all not qualified and not at all able to guide their disciples back home back to Godhead. So you are very fortunate you have not taken initiation from one of ISKCON’s cheating gurus.

      Read Prabhupada’s books and take shelter of Srila Prabhupada and your spiritual life will advance very nicely.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  19. saroj says:

    Please continue sending me the spiritual mails to help me to advance in Krishna consciousness.

    regards

  20. nama das says:

    I was reading one of your letters regarding how you felt when you were trying to distribute Srila Prabhupadas books and you were not supported by the other Iskcon devotees at that time and that you felt your presence only caused others to be reminded of the true mission of book distributing, because they were not going out it highlighted that fact and that probably disturbed them. I was really surprised to note down the year as 1994, I thought the letter was relating to the present time 2012. What a shock to know that your experience all those years ago is what I am experiencing at the present moment. It is shocking that this great Brhat Mrdanga book distribution is not going on in the way that Prabhupad wants. Other things seem to take precedence to this one thing that pleases Srila Prabhupada the most.

    • Yes Prabhu, the distribution of Srila Prabhupada’s books is not taken very seriously these days in ISKCON. I suggest you get the books yourself from http://www.KrishnaStore.co.uk , we have a big wholesale section there where you can get cases of Srila Prabhupada’s original books, there is a DVD book distribution seminar there that you can watch and easily learn proven and successful methods for distributing the books and just do it. You will get the blessings and mercy of Srila Prabhupada and the sincere devotees also.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  21. prateek arora says:

    Hare Krishna

  22. balesh says:

    Haribol prahu
    As of late I haven’t received your Emails. I feel so lost. Pls consider me again. U have have realy uplifted me spiritualy wit ur articales.
    I would also love to have some of HDG Prabhupadas books to read at my leisure, but affordebility is my problem.
    If possible pls send me a few books…

    Hare Krishna
    Balesh

  23. Hare Krishna Albert

    No. You should not go to an ISKCON temple. What ISKCON preaches today is so watered-down and confused that you will not get any benefit at all by going to an ISKCON temple. Anyhow ISKCON Houston is 100% Indian Hindu-only temple and you will not be at all welcome there. It is only catering to Indians, Hindus. So it is best, at this point in time, to stay completely away from anything connected to ISKCON. They will only poison you.

    As far as initiation if you go to ISKCON and get initiated by one of there conditioned soul gurus that will be the end of your spiritual life. There is nothing so devastating for anyone trying to make spiritual advancement than accepting as his guru someone who is not himself a liberated soul and who has no ability to guide the disciples back home, back to Godhead.

    So if you take initiation from one of these bogus gurus you are not going to become Krishna conscious at all. It will end very painfully for you and will be a great stumbling block in your attempts to make spiritual advancement.

    You simply need to read Srila Prabhupada’s books, all of Srila Prabhupada’s books, and you will find as you read Srila Prabhupada’s books he is giving you many instructions and you just have to follow these instructions Srila Prabhupada gives you while you read his books and that is your path to spiritual success.

    The more you have any connection with ISKCON the more confused and frustrated you will become, but the more you associate with Srila Prabhupada through reading his books, the more you will become Krishna conscious and happy. The way to spiritual advancement is through the association of pure devotees of Krishna. There is no other way. And as you read Srila Prabhupada’s books you are personally associating with Srila Prabhupada, a pure devotee of Krishna, and this is very potent and will quickly help you advance spiritually. Not only is Srila Prabhupada personally present in his books but Krishna is there, Lord Caitanya is there and all the great devotees and acharyas are there and as you read Prabhupada’s books you are associating with them all…

    So you have to do the basic things. Most people who write letters like this are not even doing the basic things. So the basic things are chanting at least 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mantra daily on beads, strictly following the four regulative principles [no illicit sex, no meat eating, no gambling and no intoxication] and reading Srila Prabhupada’s books at least 1-2 hours daily. All of these things are absolutely essential and you are not going to become Krishna conscious unless you surrender to doing these things and you actually do them regularly every day.

    Of course in the beginning you may find some difficulties and sometimes may fail in some way, but that is just a sign of our materially conditioned state and even if you do fall down then you have to restore yourself to the proper standard and become determined not to fall down again.

    It is not always easy to become Krishna conscious. Srila Prabhupada says that becoming Krishna conscious is like declaring war against maya. And she will fight back. As we try to become Krishna conscious maya will offer us so many allurements and in so many ways try and distract us and get us back in her clutches.

    But the only purpose of the human form of life is to become Krishna conscious. Becoming Krishna conscious is the only way we can escape from the miserable conditions of repeated birth, old age, disease and death in the material world. Krishna conscious activities are the ONLY useful activities and we need to adjust our lives so we are simply engaged in chanting Hare Krishna, reading Srila Prabhupada’s books and serving Srila Prabhupada and Krishna 24 hours a day.

    So just forget about ISKCON, today’s ISKCON can not help anyone become Krishna conscious, and take shelter of Srila Prabhupada through his books and chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

    Madhudvisa dasa

  24. Philip says:

    Dear Madhudvisa dasa,

    Thank you for helping me out when I purchased the wrong set of files for download. I need advice as to the best way to precede reading Swami Prabhupada’s books and listening to the mp3s and watching the videos. First, I will say that I was born and raised Roman Catholic, left the church, became Pentecostal Holiness at age 25, graduated from a 3 year Bible school, but that style of Christianity wasn’t working for me so I went back to the Catholic church and also looked at Eastern Orthodoxy at age 35. I also read a bit about world religions. I had a major change of religion when I was 39, becoming a 12er Shia Muslim. That was 13 years ago. I still like comparative religion and had read about Theravada and Mahayana Buddhism and early Taoism, but a little over a year ago I read The Science of Self-Realization by Swami Prabhupada and was pleasantly surprised. From an Amazon Marketplace seller, I bought the original edition of the Bhagavad Gita as it is, and from others the Krishna Book, Sri Isophanishad, and the Teachings of Lord Chaitanya, all the original editions reprinted. I couldn’t find an original Nectar of Devotion in hardcover new on Amazon, which I would also like to read. Besides the first book I mentioned, I have about 3 chapters left in the Bhagavad Gita as it is, and have not read the other books yet. As you may remember, I also desire to read the Srimad Bhagavatam set, also. On the one hand, I like being a 12er Shia Muslim, and I do enjoy being with my Arab and Iranian and Khoja (originally from India, but came to the USA via East Africa) brothers. However, I was so surprised by what I have read by Swami Prabhupada that I believe I should make a thorough study his books. I had read Swami Pravananda’s abbreviated translation of the Upanishads back in the 1990s and have his translation of the Bhagavad Gita from that time but never really got into it. What Swami Prabhupada writes grabs me, whereas Swami Pravananda’s writings only were a bit interesting, and seems to be somewhat like what I’m doing when I chant the devotional names of God from the Quran. Except for the earliest Zoroastrian writings, the Gathas, I never thought any scriptures would move me the same way the Bible and later the Quran have moved me. While I love the Buddha, I am a theist and so Buddhism has many good points but is not for me, though I believe the Buddha was a theist. I don’t know if I will ever actually become a devotee, but I do believe I need to do more than just scratch the surface and get the big picture of what Swami Prabhupada taught. I did contact ISKCON locally and attended one meeting at an apartment that was attended by one other American of Northern European descent, the rest of the people, including the host, were originally from India and so are Indian Americans. They were great, and they really enjoyed chanting Hare Krishna. The food was delicious, but I usually enjoy Indian dishes anyway. I am of course on the outside looking in, but what originally drew me to this website was that I don’t believe someone’s writings should be edited later. I believe Swami Prabhupada’s words should stand as he wrote them. The belief in a lineage is a part of 12er Shia Islam also, since we believe that God gave 12 Imams to interpret the Quran correctly after the passing of Muhammad. Thus, what Swami Prabhupada taught about lineage makes sense to me. I don’t know what to make of what happened in ISKCON after the disappearance of Swami Prabhupada. – Anyway this comment is getting way too long …. my real question is … as I only have about 12 dollars to spend at this time, is it a good idea to wait a few weeks and get the Kindle Books of Swami Prabhupada to read the Srimad Bhagavadam, or would it be better to get, say The Nectar of Devotion and read it after I read the two shorter books I have on hand (after I finish the Bhagavad Gita), or is it best to read the Srimad Bhagavatam next, and thus get the kindle books next? You’ve been down this path before, so I will follow the advice you give. By the way, before I read anything by Swami Prabhupada, I believed Krishna and the Buddha were prophets of God. I know now that this is NOT the belief of Swami Prabhupada concerning Krishna, but I state this so you know that whatever I end up deciding, I love Krishna (and Buddha), even if I may have a wrong idea of who they are.

    • Hare Krishna Philip

      The kindle download is only $9.95 so please get that at http://www.krishnastore.com

      Now we are having free PDF downloads of Prabhupada’s books here at Krishna.org, and you can read all of Prabhupada’s books online at http://www.PrabhupadaBooks.com and purchase the actual books at http://www.KrishnaStore.com so just get Prabhupada’s books and read them…

  25. marvin says:

    hare Krishna prabhu.
    all glories to srila prabhpada.
    alright well first off im in a bad situation. ive been following krishna consciousness for about 3 months. and my parents dont like it. im 19 years old and living with them iwas going to go to college but to me its a waste of time and doesnt gaurantee a job and now that im in Krisna conscious it seems very unnecassary. so my parents dont like my way of thinking since I do everything in the service of Krishna. they say im to deep into these books and dont have to think about god 24/7 and I beg to differ. I tell them were never suppose to forget god but they dont understand they are very much in the mode of ignorance. and I have a job at a fast food reastraunt that I hate so bad and I want to quit. but my parents say the money is important. main point is anything I do or want to do is looked down upon by my parents. I just dont wantto live with them anymore because I cant do anything without being criticized ive been to iskcon los angeles a couple times in the last few weeks and am really contemplating on living there only becsuse I would be able to study srila prabhupadas books more I purchased the distribution box and have individual books I bought online from srila prabhupada. and purchased the dvd and mp3 library. I have accepted srila prabhpada as my spiritual master and I dont know if iskcon would ruin the path im on.
    please madhudvisa dasa I am begging for your mercy and help in my situation I dont know where to turn anymore. please please respond. I am very much grateful for your response.
    your servant marvin.

    • Hare Krishna Prabhu

      You need to read Prabhupada’s books and chant Hare Krishna more and ask Srila Prabhupada and Krishna for the inspiration what you should do. I do not know. You have to use your own common sense and intelligence and consider the options and make the choice yourself.

      Chant Hare Krisha and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  26. Emily says:

    Dear Madhudvisa dasa,
    I read in one of your recent newsletters that it is wrong to drink tea and coffee, why is that so? For that reason, is it considered a sin to drink such things? Thank you for your help, Emily.

    • Hare Krishna Emily

      Yes. It is breaking the regulative principles to drink tea or coffee. The reason is tea and coffee are intoxicants that one becomes addicted to. You know so many people are addicted to tea and coffee and can not get by without it… So anything addictive and intoxicating takes us away from Krishna consciousness. So drinking of tea and coffee is prohibited for devotees, it is a type of intoxication.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  27. Barbara says:

    Tea and coffee are stimulants and as such are polluting the mind. The mind must be trained by chanting Maha mantra and by engaging the senses on everything in relation to Lord Krishna, not artificially by the use of any sort of drugs. It is a process and that is the way to start taming our mind and preparing ourselves for transcendental knowledge.
    Haribol

  28. Mahesh says:

    Hare Krishna Prabhu Ji !!

    I want to know about Hamsdutta Prahbu. He has been authorised by Srila prabhupada to intitiate on his behalf and what I understand he is doing the same now. Forgetting his past wherein he also committed the same mistake of becoming successor of Srila prabhupada like other 10. Is this appropriate to get initited from him ?

    Hare Krishna !!

    Mahesh

    • I don’t think he is initiating anyone now Prabhu. Formal initiation is not important at all. It is important to actually surrender to Srila Prabhupada and serve him. That is real initiation. I guess you have not even read all of Srila Prabhupada’s books, so Prabhu you have to become serious about hearing from Srila Prabhupada. You obviously need to read all of his books, listen to all of his classes, read all his letters, etc, etc. Srila Prabhupada has given us a lifetime’s worth of material, we can hear from him, associate with him, constantly for the rest of our lives. And if we do this, read all of Prabhupada’s books, hear all of his lectures, read all of his letters, watch all the DVDs of Prabhupada, then if we put what Srila Prabhupada is teaching us into practice in our lives then that is initiation. Initiation is surrendering to the bona fide spiritual master and making his mission our mission in life. Making his orders to us as our very purpose of existence. So many people sit down in a fire yajna and go through the so-called initiation ceremony, but they do not surrender, it is useless. They do not get initiated. The surrender and service is required. The formal initiation ceremony is not very important.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  29. Hunter says:

    Hello, how does one become initiated by Prabhupada now? Are their others who still do the ritvik ceremonies today? Are they qualified to?

    • It is not at all easy to be initiated by Srila Prabhupada. His standards are very very high. You can only become qualified to accept initiation from Srila Prabhupada if you really actually surrender to him and serve him and dedicate your life to him. Otherwise ritvik and so many other nonsense things will not get you initiated by Srila Prabhupada. Ritvik has to be authorized by Srila Prabhupada to act as ritvik. Anyone who is acting as a ritvik now is a cheater. He is not authorized by Prabhupada to act on his behalf. So he can not initiate you on behalf of Srila Prabhupada.

      So better to forget about this for the moment and actually become a completely surrendered servant of Srila Prabhupada and actually dedicate your life to serving him, then Prabhupada may make some arrangement for you.

      But most so-called devotees are not serious at all, they do not surrender, and therefore do not get initiated. Initiation is not a ceremony or a fire sacrifice. It is surrender.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  30. Hunter says:

    Thank you for your quick response, Prabhuji!

    Also, is it possible, since Prabhupada has left this material world, to still consider Him my Śiksha Guru through His vani and books? I believe He is still living since Krsna says we are all the soul, so can I still receive guidance from Him and pray to Him so that I may get Krsna Bhakti and hopefully in some lifetime, Prema? I kind of already consider Him my Śiksha Guru.

    Hare Krsna!

    • Even ISKCON says that Srila Prabhupada is every ISKCON devotees main siksha guru. How can you not know that Prabhupada is your siksha guru if you are reading his books? Siksha means instruction and you are getting instruction when you read Prabhupada’s books. So you know Prabhu you should know this…

  31. Gaurangi says:

    All glories to Srila Prabhupada!
    Hare Krishna!
    Prabhu,I agree completely. I’ve only ever accepted Srila Prabhupada as my spiritual master and it is impossible for me to view anyone else in that role. Something doesn’t feel right about the way they worship these Swamis. Forgive me if that’s wrong but I’m going with my gut.
    My question is-and please forgive me-how come you,yourself got initiated if you only came into contact with Gaudiya Vaishnavism after Srila Prabhupada’s material disappearance?

    • I got initiated by Srila Prabhupada in 1987 but that is a long story. Later I took formal initiation from one of Srila Prabhupada’s disciples who initiated me on behalf of Srila Prabhupada in 1989, he gave me first and second initiation and the name “Madhudvisa dasa”. That was before I had heard the word ritvik and before I knew the July 9th letter existed. So I became a disciple of Srila Prabhupada independent to and before this whole ritvik thing started.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  32. Vinod padenni says:

    Hare Krishna.

  33. Diogenes says:

    Hare Krishna!
    What an article! But it leaves me conflicted. I discovered Krishnaism via ISKCON New Orleans, USA. I thought that was all there is to it. Now after reading this article, I am rather shocked. I had no idea there were different schools of Krishna ( if one can put it that way). I plan on moving to India soon for the sake of Krishna. I would like to work on a farm and take a guru. How do I know if I am making the correct choices? What are my choices? Where do I start/start over?

    Puzzledly Yours,

    Diogenes

    • You have to read all of Srila Prabhupada’s books and follow the instructions you will find Srila Prabhupada giving you as you read his books.

      You have to take Krishna consciousness seriously. Which means you have to actually chant at least 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mantra every day and strictly follow the four regulative principles: no illicit sex, no meat eating, no gambling and no intoxication. And you have to read Srila Prabhupada’s books at least 1-2 hours a day.

      So becoming Krishna consciousness requires some effort on our part. And it is only possible to become Krishna conscious by the mercy of a pure devotee of Krishna, by hearing from a pure devotee of Krishna. Srila Prabhupada has given us so much mercy that we can hear him so much in his transcendental books and audio and video recordings. So we need to take full advantage of associating with Srila Prabhupada through his transcendental vani [instructions]. Then you will make the correct choices. If you hear from Srila Prabhupada and follow him.

      But ISKCON is currently broken. It is better to avoid ISKCON devotees and temples completely at the present time. If you go there they will fill your head with rubbish and your spiritual life will be lost unfortunately. They have changed, updated, modernized, made politically correct, everything that Srila Prabhupada has given us and in the process of changing everything they have completely lost the plot of Krishna consciousness unfortunately. ISKCON is currently lost and if you take their advice you will also be lost, very lost…

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

  34. frances says:

    Question….. is krishna the same as the almighty God JEhovah of the christian bible….just a yes or no please.

    • Yes. Krishna is God the Father in the Bible. Even the name is the same. Jesus is called Jesus Christ. So the first name is his name and the second name is his father’s name. So Christ is Jesus’s fathers name. And in India we find that another name for Krishna is Krsta. And in Greek we find the actual name is not Christ but Krstos. So Christ is just another way of saying Krishna.

  35. Greg Sexton says:

    Hari Bol!
    Thank you for your service to Guru , Bhagavan and all of humanity!

    Hare Krishna!
    G

  36. LOUIS JOE NTAMBWE KILOLO says:

    I don’t understand why always exist many dissensions among the disciples of the master when this one is no longer in this world ? Why? Why ? If we consider all the religions, all the spiritual movements around the world
    we find almost the same phenomenon. Is’nt it the work of the negative power ? I cannot end my short comment
    without quote this saying of Jesus Christ : “They will know that you are mine if you love one another”.
    That is very easy and simple

    Louis Joe Ntambwe Kilolo.-

    • Hare Krishna Louis

      Yes. You are correct. This problem occurs in every spiritual organization when the empowered personality who establishes the organization departs. And there is nothing in the world that can stop it. At least according to Srila Bhaktsiddhanta Sarasvati Thakur, Srila Prabhupada’s spiritual master. He said that upon the departure of the empowered acharya there is nothing that can stop the Putana’s [demons] from taking over the pulpits. The problem is that in these religious organizations there is a group of ‘followers’ so the demons really want to be worshiped and followed… So the position of guru or spiritual leader is very attractive to the demons. They have no interest in actually worshiping Krishna, they want followers, fame, power, admiration, money.

      So these types of demons are always attracted to religious organizations and always make their way up to the leadership and destroy the organization for their own personal sense gratification.

      This principle Krishna also speaks about in the Bhagavad-gita. He says “I appear time and time again to reestablish the religious principles when they are lost.” So it is the nature of the material world that time destroys everything. So even though at one point in time the pure religious principles are established, in time they will be lost, and there will be a need to again reestablish the religious principles. So Krishna and His incarnations and pure devotees appear in the material world time and time again to reestablish the religious principles.

      So it is the way in the material world, we have to expect it.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa


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About the Author

My first contact with a Hare Krishna was a most merciful Mataji in Oxford Street, London who sold me a "Higher Taste" cook book in 1984 while I was on holidays there. I started seriously reading Srila Prabhupada's books in Australia 1985 and by 1986 Srila Prabhupada had convinced me "Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead" and "we should surrender to Krishna."I joined the Hare Krishnas in Perth, Western Australia in 1986. Since then I have been chanting Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare, reading and distributing Srila Prabhupada's books and preaching as much as I can.That's my life and full-time occupation now really. I like it more than anything I've ever experienced before. Srila Prabhupada's books are so amazing... Even after reading them all many times they're still fresh and new. They are truly transcendental!That's it really. Now I'm just hankering to once again see the world chant Hare Krishna, dance and feast and float away in the ecstasy of Lord Caitanya's Sankirtana movement as it did in Srila Prabhupada's physical presence. Let the whole world drown in the ecstatic flood of love of Krishna!


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