Courses and Exams for initiations (Diksha) in ISKCON for different levels!

Courses and Exams for initiations (Diksha) in ISKCON for different levels!

This Post is intended to guide the devotees who like to take initiation (Diksha) of different stages in ISKCON (International Society for Krishna Consciousness).

Though Srila Prabhupada gave initiation to his disciples without these qualifying exams during the initial stage of ISKCON because, there was a huge need of hands to undertake his mission of spreading the Mahaprabhu worldwide.

(How to take Diksha (Initiation) and become a disciple of a guru (spiritual master) in ISKCON? READ HERE!)

However, he wished all his disciples get qualified in the below mentioned exams in due course of time.

For new initiates in future, Srila Prabhupada wished the following exams to be qualified by the devotees who like to get initiated in different stages.

Let us read them from the letters of Srila Prabhupada himself.

ISKCON DISCIPLES COURSE

For the first Hari Nam initiation, ISKCON’s GBC has made ISKCON DISCIPLES COURSE as compulsory. Without passing this exam, one can not get Hari Nam diksha from the gurus of ISKCON.  This is a simple, but quality course that teaches you the rules, authorities, levels, positions of authorities, guidance to accept and reject a guru, Diksha and Siksha gurus status, etc., that a disciple should know to be a good disciple. Before my initiation to my Guru Maharaja, I myself have passed this exam with very good score and I truly loved and enjoyed the contents of this important course.

(Is Brahmana Diksha (Second Initiation) Compulsory for all? READ HERE!)

This course is given both thru offline (direct) and online by different bodies as approved courses. You can approach your local ISKCON Center to get the details of these courses.  They will take care of admission processes as every center arrange the batches of courses. You can get the details of online courses also from your local ISKCON centers.

This exam is truly an eye opener and enjoyable for the new devotees! This initiative is to be truly appreciated by all as an effort to avoid misunderstanding of the concepts and rules.

EXAMS FOR OTHER INITIATIONS (DIKSHA) IN ISKCON

LETTER TO ALL GBCs ON 06.01.1976:

(1)

Anyone wishing to be initiated as a brahmana will have to pass the Bhaktisastri exam and anyone wishing to take sannyasa will have to pass the Bhaktivaibhava examination as well. This will prevent our Society from degrading to the level of so many other institutions where, in order to maintain the Temple, they accept all third class men as brahmanas. Any sannyasis or brahmanas already initiated who fail to pass the exams will be considered low class or less qualified. Anyone wishing to be 2nd initiated will sit for examination once a year at Mayapur. Answers will be in essay form and authoritative quotations will be given a bigger score. During the exams books may not be consulted.

(INITIATION (DIKSHA) VOWS & CHALLENGES IN FOLLOWING THEM! READ HERE!)

(2)

His Divine Grace therefore wishes to institute examinations to be given to all prospective candidates for sannyasa and BRAHMANA INITIATION. In addition he wishes that all present sannyasis and brahmanas also pass the examination.

SYLLABUS:   Awarding of these titles will be based upon the following books:

Bhakti Sastri Course

Bhagavad-gita, Nectar of Devotion, Nectar of Instruction, Isopanisad, Easy Journey To Other Planets, and all other small paperbacks, as well as Arcana-paddhati (a book to be compiled by Nitai Prabhu based on Hari-bhakti-vilasa on Deity worship)

Bhakti-vaibhava Course

All of the above plus the first six cantos of Srimad-Bhagavatam

Bhaktivedanta Course

All of the above plus cantos 7 through 12 of Srimad-Bhagavatam

(BENEFITS OF DIKSHA (INITIATION) AND HOW IT WORKS! EXAMPLES! READ HERE!)

Bhakti-sarvabhauma

All the above plus the entire Caitanya-caritamrta

Anyone wishing to be initiated as a brahmana will have to pass the Bhaktisastri exam and anyone wishing to take sannyasa will have to pass the Bhaktivaibhava examination as well. This will prevent our Society from degrading to the level of so many other institutions where, in order to maintain the Temple, they accept all third class men as brahmanas. Any sannyasis or brahmanas already initiated who fail to pass the exams will be considered low class or less qualified. Anyone wishing to be 2nd initiated will sit for examination once a year at Mayapur. Answers will be in essay form and authoritative quotations will be given a bigger score. During the exams books may not be consulted.

Srila Prabhupada wishes to begin this program at this year’s Mayapur meeting. He requests that you all send your opinions and comments here immediately so that everything may be prepared in time.

Hoping this meets you in the best of health and Krsna Consciousness.

Approved:

A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
Your servant,
Tamala Krsna Goswami, Personal Secretary.

Hope these basic details about the Courses and Exams for initiations (Diksha) in ISKCON for different levels are helpful to you.

Contact your nearest temple for further guidance!

(RITVIK INITIATION (DIKSHA) AND LIVING GURU INITIATION – DIFFERENCES! READ HERE!)

Author: RAJAN

RAJAN from Tamil Nadu, India, a Life Patron and an Initiated Devotee being in ISKCON for nearly three decades, serves anonymously to avoid Prominence and crowd as an insignificant, Humble and Neutral Servant for all the devotees of Krishna! He promotes Social media forums and this blog-website as e-satsangha (e-forums) blessed with Lakhs of followers, to give Spiritual Solutions for all the Material Problems of the devotees since 2011! He writes friendly and practical tips to practice devotion (i) without hurting the followers of other paths, (ii) without affecting the personal and career life, and (iii) without the blind, superstitious and ritualistic approach! He dedicates all the glories and credits to his Guru and Krishna.

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