<TABLE cellSpacing=10 cellPadding=20 width=750 border=1><TBODY><TR><TD align=middle bgColor=#e4efef>“ISKCON” Gurus, Initiations, and Party Men
By Kailasa Candra dasa
</TD></TR><TR><TD bgColor=#e4efef>“. . . do not try to initiate. You are not in a proper position now to initiate anyone. . . Don't be allured by such maya. . . Don't be allured by cheap disciples. Go on steadfastly to render service first.
If you immediately become guru, then the service activities will be stopped; and as there are many cheap gurus and cheap disciples, without any substantial knowledge, and manufacturing new sampradayas, and with service activities stopped, and all spiritual progress choked up.”
Letter to Acyutananda/Jaya Govinda on Aug. 21, 1968 from Montreal (emphasis added)
Secretary: What about the so-called gurus that take a little bit here, a little bit there?
Prabhupada: So-called gurus, they are so-called gurus. They are not gurus.
That is already explained. If one does not speak what Krishna speaks, he is not guru. If you accept so-called guru, that is your misfortune. What can be done?
Secretary: Some of them will say some things that Krishna says, but they'll take from other places also. What is the position of such persons?
Prabhupada: He's most dangerous. He's most dangerous. He is opportunist.
He's finding out customer, something here... According to the customer he is giving something, as the customers will be pleased.
Answers to Questionnaire Room Conversation on June 28, 1976 (emphasis added)
vidyam cavidyam ca yas
tad vedobhayam saha
avidyaya mrtyum tirtva
“Only one who can learn the process of nescience and that of transcendental knowledge side by side can transcend the influence of repeated birth and death and enjoy the full blessings of immortality.”Sri Isopanisad Mantra 11 (emphasis added)
During the final years of the preaching activities of His Divine Grace Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Gosvami Maharaj Prabhupada Thakura, who was both shaktyavesh-avatar and Sampradaya-Acharya, one of his favorite initiated disciples was Professor Sanyal, a learned intellectual and an accomplished writer. Even during his manifest lila, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Gosvami Prabhupada--who was and remains a direct associate of Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu (along with his illustrious father, Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura)--approved of Professor Sanyal’s book.
This book, entitled Krishna Chaitanya, was entirely bona fide according to the Sampradaya Acharya. I once possessed it, but the mahant of the Radha-Raman temple, Visvambhara Gosvami, asked me in Vrindavan to give it to him in 1984. I acquiesced to the request. His Divine Grace Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, the most recent Sampradaya-Acharya and our initiating spiritual master, allowed that this book be consulted and read by his disciples, along with Bon Maharaj's Bhaktirasamritasindhu.
I had the actual quote (referenced below) by Prabhupada about Professor Sanyal, and it was used in my preaching in 1980, specifically at the beginning of a manuscript I co-authored back then entitled In The Measure of Our Conviction.
The quote is not to be found in any later edition of the Bhaktivedanta Vedabase; perhaps, it has never been included in any ISKCON databases. If so, that is a shame. The quote is very important and should not be lost in the oblivion of time.
Now, I am going to share with you this quote from Srila Prabhupada as per my personal memory; what is written in bold italics is exact. The gist of the entire quote, as per its follow-up paragraph, is accurate and in context. Srila Prabhupada did not at all approve of this Professor Sanyal after the final day of 1936 (the disappearance of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta), neither did Srila Prabhupada approve of any of Professor Sanyal's writings after that time.
"Professor Sanyal, he was a very nice man. But he was a Party Man . . . “
That statement has been attributed to Srila Prabhupada. I do not exactly remember the wording of the rest of the quote, but I do remember what it meant and indicated. It indicated that, due to his having become a Party Man, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati arranged to have Professor Sanyal leave the scene very quickly.
A recent posting on the INTERNET, by someone who apparently has researched Professor Sanyal, states that he died a natural death. If you have access to the exact quote, send it our way; we shall recognize it immediately and post it.
Apparently, Professor Sanyal joined the Party of Ananta Vasudeva (later called Puri Maharaj), as opposed to the Bagh Bazaar Party of Tirtha Maharaj. As such, his writings, after the disappearance of his Guru Maharaj, backed that (Vasudeva’s) party line.
In the “ISKCON” movement a different course was followed, although there were parallels. Instead of declaring one mahabhagavat, it was declared by the “GBC” (just as falsely) that there were eleven of them. Of course, Ananta Vasudeva was a very learned scholar in the Vaishnava siddhanta, unlike the eleven Zonal Acharyas of the post-modern era. Still, despite his erudition and previous approval from the Acharya, Srila Prabhupada did not condone the writings of this Professor Sanyal after the disappearance of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura.
The most important thing to consider is that Srila Prabhupada did not approve of Party Men. He in effect condemned this kind of functionary. Currently, the original ISKCON movement is covered by the "ISKCON" sheath, just as our original mind, intelligence, and ego is covered by the material ego (ahankara), material intelligence, and material mind.
The "ISKCON" movement is dominated by Party Men, and this has been the case since the late Seventies. The Party Men cooperated with the Zonals (of course, the Zonals themselves were all Party Men) and helped to empower them. The Party Man faction is a multi-faceted dynamic, composed of fanatics, sycophants, henchmen, and temple officers. It always has been.
There is Krishna Consciousness and then there is a perverted reflection of Krishna Consciousness. The Party Men of “ISKCON” represent, at best, only a reflection of Krishna Consciousness. The dynamic of the Party Man is found in what he thinks constitutes the recognition, approval, and blessings of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
Party Men measure these ideals in terms of their position in the corporate structure of their institution. As long as they remain a somebody like a Temple President or a “GBC”—and as long as there is adequate revenue flow to continue in their status and with their project—then whatever they are doing or saying is considered spiritual by them. Krishna Consciousness means to see as Lord Krishna sees, to see as the Chaitya-guru or Paramatma sees. To become Krishna Conscious means to see the Party Men for what they really are.
The Party Men shift with the ever-changing winds of corporate doctrine. They are "GBC" loyalists. The "ISKCON" movement is completely under the control of the "GBC." Unlike ISKCON, however, the real GBC no longer exists—and, as far as that goes, it never did function in a bona fide way for a great deal of time even while Srila Prabhupada was still with us. The devolution of this governing body has been long in duration, the offenses have been very great, and the GBC has been ruined, permanently warped and perverted into the "GBC."
The Party Man is a particularly nasty piece of work. He sometimes comes in the form of a sannyasi. He is often completely without genuine conscience. His intelligence always works to ponder the Party Line and the current momentum; he always wants to make sure that he will be on the side that is winning. His shibboleth is: "'ISKCON'--with all thy faults--I still love thee!" He backs the current transformation, and we are now in the Second Transformation