ISKCON GBC Plan to Appoint Women Gurus…
At its annual meetings, ISKCON’s Governing Body Commission (GBC) discussed a core issue, the qualifications of guru. In a quiet, but radical move it was accepted that women could be gurus in ISKCON.
In the Vaisnava tradition, to which ISKCON belongs, the guru is a vital part of the spiritual life of the devotee. In ISKCON’s history, a number of gurus have deviated from the high standards expected of them and this has caused much grief amongst their disciples and in the Society at large. Therefore it is not surprising that it is an issue that the GBC returns to often.
In what many will regard as a radical step, the GBC gave formal assent to women taking on the role of initiating guru.
Dear Madhudvisa dasa I know that you are quite busy and I do not want to bother you. I also myself work 6-days a week and do not have much time eather, But please if you could answer this question I would be very greatfull. How can the GBC appoint women gurus? Your servant Steve.
Hare Krishna! please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada!
ISKCON’s guru system simply does not work. They have appointed so many gurus who have practically all turned out to be bogus. This has destroyed the lives of so many devotees searching after spiritual life who have been coerced to accept unqualified men as paramahamsas, pure devotees. These devotees have been convinced to take initiation from “ISKCON gurus”, to surrender to them and to serve them. We have seen it over and over again, these unqualified gurus — while completely unable to deliver the real seed of devotion to their disciples — are very expert at taking service from their disciples. These “ISKCON gurus” accept service on the premise that they are pure devotees, liberated souls capable of delivering their disciples from the blazing fire of this material world (samsara davanala lidha loka…) But they are unable to pour the waters of mercy on their disciples like the rain which extinguishes the forest fire. They are simply incapable of performing the task the guru has to perform. That is to plant the seed of devotion, the bhakti-lata bija, within the hearts of their disciples, and then to cultivate that tiny sprouting creeper of devotion until it becomes a fully-grown healthy plant producing flowers, fruits and seeds.
So the current guru system in ISKCON has failed and the GBC more or less accept it has failed, they are always looking for some way to “fix” their guru sustem but refuse to accept the only sollution — take shelter of Srila Prabhupada. So this recent GBC resolution stating ISKCON will now introduce women gurus is meaningless noise. They do not have any guru-tattva, they do not have any qualified gurus, they have no idea about guru at all. So we can take it as the mutterings of crazy men. We can not take ISKCON very seriously on anything unfortunately.
The reality is a real Vaisnava guru is very rare, and he is self-effulgent like the Sun. As it is not difficult to spot the Sun in the sky — the Sun is self-effulgent — everyone can see the Sun immediately. Similarly a real Vaisnava guru is self-effulgent like the Sun. No one has to point him out, he does not require “authorization” from the GBC. Actually if a “guru” feels he needs to work under the authority of the GBC then we can understand immediately he is bogus. A real spiritual master does not work under any such eclestical body. He has his relationship with his guru and he works under the authority of his guru. He has to have the freedom to instruct his disciples as he sees fit. He can not work in a system where he does not have the ultimate authority over his disciples. The disciple has to surrender to his spiritual master and follow his instructions as his life and soul, and the spiritual master has to be a pure devotee, a paramahamsa and he has to have full authority over his disciples and must be able to instruct them as their absolute authority. That is the system from the beginning of time and it will never change. ISKCON’s GBC have styled themselves as the “guru police.” They have taken it as their business to approve and suspend “gurus” as they so choose and according to their politics of the day. No real guru would put himself under the authority of such a political body. He can not put himself in a position where he may be prevented from giving good instruction to his disciples. This may well happen in ISKCON if a guru’s instruction to his disciples was not in line with some of the politics of the GBC. In such a case the GBC could take away the “gurus” “badge” and take his disciples away.
No bona fide guru could work in such a situation.
So you can know it for absolutely sure that there are no qualified gurus in ISKCON.
This idea of ISKCON appointing women gurus is simply a joke. They have never succeeded in appointing even one bona fide guru, and they never will, because gurus are not appointed… No disciple in ISKCON has been properly initiated since 1977 and as we can very plainly see the whole organization has collapsed into a dysfunctional mess. Now they are adding women “gurus”…
The underlying idea is that the GBC think they can “make” gurus by taking some women and giving her a “guru badge.” But surely they have seen this does not work with all the “guru badges” they have issued to men over many years. A guru is not appointed by the GBC. A Vaisnava guru is self-effulgent…
So the GBC can not make gurus. All they can do is wait for self-effulgent gurus to appear — and of course they will not accept him — because he will not agree to be under the authority of the GBC… A real guru is very rare. And we are very fortunate to have the “gold standard” with Srila Prabhupada and we have so much access to Srila Prabhupada through his books and his vani (instructions) in the form of audio and video recordings. So we can take advantage of the association and instructions of Srila Prabhupada and serve him.
If a self effulgent guru appears that is nice. And really it does not matter, man or women, we are not the body. However, a spirit soul in the body of a women should act in such a way that other spirit souls in women’s bodies, if they follow her example, will advance spiritually. So the good qualities for a women are chastity, submission to her husband, shyness, etc. So a Vaisnava lady will not push herself forward to become a guru as we understand it. Such a thing is unheard of in the entire tradition of Gaudia Vaisnavism. There is no example of this in the past.
“As a man must follow great personalities like Brahma and Narada, a woman must follow the path of such ideal women as Sita, Mandodari and Draupadi. By staying chaste and faithful to her husband, a woman enriches herself with supernatural power.”
So it is not at all appropriate for a women to push herself forward and try to lord it over the sannyasis and brahmacaris for example. It would turn the whole social system upside down and simply create a great disturbance. Rather a pure devotee in a women’s body will act as a guru but in the role of a women. One can read the “Teachings of Queen Kunti” to see the great prayers of a great Vaisnava in the body of a women.
So overall, don’t take any notice of the crazy mutterings emanating from ISKCON, rather take shelter of Srila Prabhupada by reading his books and all the real knowledge will be revealed to you.
Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!