MY FRIEND TALKS ILL ABOUT ISKCON. WHAT TO DO?
A Girl devotee (Name hidden)( asked like this:
Hari bol Prabhuji! My obeisances to u. Prabhuji there is one guy on Fb his name is ……………… He is also a devotee. He truly respects Srila Prabhupad but dishonour some of his great deciple. They are the prestige of Iskcon. Great Vaishnav. May be I am doing Vaishnav Apradh. I prayed a lot to Lord Krsna & Srila Prabhupad to guide me. So I find you to take me out from this situation. Actually this guy is blaming these sanyasis. But my heart is not accepting it. As I can see their contribution n sacrifice. Divinity feeling whenever I watch or hear videos. When I tried to oppose, he said u r blind followers & so called devotees. U don’t know anything what Srila Prabhupāda has told. Just blind following them. U ll all go to hell. Or God is making me aware of these sanyasi that’s y I am going through this. So please prabhuji will u tell me how to recognise who is right or wrong & plz tell me about these Sanyasis. Plz clear this bcz by thinking bad about these Sanyasis i am doing vaishnav apradh & I don’t want to do that. Plz help.
Hundreds of devotees are feeling like you. So, I chose to reply this to help them.
Even if you follow a perfect guru or organization, there will be some people who will discourage you. Every formation in this material world has opposing persons and forums.
You may love your mother much. According to you, your mother may be perfect. But, some envious ladies in your neighbourhood may have negative views about your mother.
A film may be a very clean and with a good message. But, it may not run box office hit. Only some spicy films run well.
So, this is the nature of this material world. As far as ISKCON is concerned, I am in this society since my very young age. Though I took birth in a Vedic Brahmana family, I did not know how to LOVE GOD. Only Srila Prabhupada and Junior/ Senior devotees of ISKCON taught me how to LOVE Krishna.
Previously, I was living some kind of material life in which I started my company itself to become monetarily rich. But, only ISKCON taught me that becoming spiritually rich is the real wealth, not just money. So, my consciousness changed from 100% material to mostly spiritual, though I have not attained perfection in spirituality yet.
So, I can never forget Srila Prabhupada and his ISKCON society in my life and I am now preaching to all of you only because of the preaching of Srila Prabhupada. He made an unqualified soul to learn something and preach to others to make them lead a spirituality dominated life.
Of course, there may be some issues among devotees in the matter of administration or successorship. But, these things are not required for us because we are not interested in any post in ISKCON. Particularly, I never even thought of getting any position in this sathsangha and I always enjoy being a last bench devotee.
In spite of such negative preaching, every ISKCON temple offers nice sathsangha every sunday and on festivals. Such sathsangha were never stopped. ISKCON can be considered as a SCHOOL/ GURUKUL to learn and practice Krishna Consciousness.
Are you going to a school or college to become a principal of that school? No. You should go there to learn more and more and become a learnt humble student. Such facilities are abundantly available in every ISKCON centre. Learn and come back.
If any two teachers in a school fight with themselves, will you quit that school and go to another school? No. Because, the syllabus of that school is outstanding.
Same applies here. Go to the nearby centre every Sunday, hear lectures, sing kirtans, chant Hare Krishna, have delicious prasadam, donate atleast to compensate the cost of prasadam, thank Krishna for having given this nice sathsangha for today’s world and come back home, and follow whatever you read and heard in lectures in your home.
That’s all. What is the problem for you to do these things? Srila Prabhupada’s books are always with you. Read them. Follow all the regulative principles, chanting, offering food, etc., and get recharged every Sunday with a Sathsangha in ISKCON centre nearby to you.
Thus, stage by stage, your Krishna Consciousness will grow and you will feel that you are going closer to Krishna.
This is what I have been doing for so long years in ISKCON. Many devotees are junior to me there, but, I never had any ego to learn from their lectures. And, though I have read about some issues of the managements and successors, these things never attracted me because, my purpose of going to ISKCON is TO LEARN, NOT TO LEAD. So, I am very happy there in spite of these issues.
In every group of people that has thousands of members and followers, some issues will always be there. But, we should take only good things from any forum and neglect the unwanted things like swan do by taking only milk from a mixture of milk and water.
We need a group of vaishnavas to associate with. We can’t get it in a park where the people are spending time for material enjoyments and rest. Wherever you go, you will see the domination of materialistic people only. In this scenario, ISKCON is giving us a great opportunity to find hundreds of vaishnavas and to associate with them.
Where else we can get such devotees who are interested in LEARNING about Krishna? There are thousands of temples in India where you can worship Lord in different forms. But, you do not have the facilities to learn about the Lord anywhere except a few centers run by some sathsanghas.
So, ISKCON is a major source among those sathsanghas for learning and worshiping Krishna. Here, you not only worship Krishna, but also learn about Krishna and associate with the other like minded devotees. They are giving this facility free of cost and also offer delicious prasadam offered to Krishna. If you are capable, you can donate something to the temple to manage their service. If you are unable to donate, no one compels there to donate. You can also serve there by doing some physical services like cleaning, cooking, garlanding, etc.
Why should we hesitate to take these facilities? Let a few negatives be. It is the responsibility of the managements to tackle. They may even have some genuine reasons for those issues to exist. Who knows their pressures of managing the temples? Somehow they are managing. Just use them and support them to possible extent. We are nothing to do with these small issues that are natural in any group.
Even if you take our online preaching, it is managed with so many difficulties. Finding faults is easy. But, managing these services with a pattern involves many pressures money-wise, health-wise, time-wise and even personal life-wise. No devotee is pressurized for supporting this service monetarily. Somehow it is managed because of the support of a few devotees and my involvement and you are using them.
Similarly, direct serving managements too will have many pressures. Understand them and cooperate with them. Let us not look for negatives only. Plenty of positives are there. Make use of them.
If you follow my advice, you can remain happy in any group, not only ISKCON. Never care for any politics in any forum. Such small issues will always be there from time to time. Just take what you want and help to your extent possible. That’s all.
Hope this helps you.