"Any person who is seriously desirous of achieving real happiness must seek out a bona fide spiritual master and take shelter of him by initiation. The qualification of a spiritual master is that he must have realized the conclusion of the scriptures by deliberation and arguments and thus be able to convince others of these conclusions. Such great personalities, who have taken complete shelter of the Supreme Godhead, leaving aside all material considerations, are to be understood as bona fide spiritual masters." (SB 11.3.21 quoted in SB 4.29.55 purport)
Apr 17 2014 Plans for Increasing Book Distribution
While ISKCON, the GBC, and the BBT are independent entities and thus the GBC cannot instruct the BBT trustees, the GBC humbly appeals to the BBT trustees to kindly get involved in pushing this process forward and making sure that the development of these plans actually happens. The Indian BBT and Indian GBCs are exempted from this resolution as they are already doing such powerful book distribution. Of course, they are welcomed and encouraged to present a plan for the coming year if they wish.
Apr 13 2014 Female Diksa Gurus
The subject of Vaisnavis initiating in ISKCON is further tabled until additional discussion at the 2014 GBC Midterm Meeting. In the meantime the GBC Eexecutive Committee will work on the following process: 1. Creating a committee of devotees who have no pre-determined view on this topic who will gather documents from all sources on the subject of female diksa-gurus. 2. The committee will sort, summarize, and categorize all documentation. Categories could include Srila Prabhupada's quotations, varnasrama-dharma, history within our sampradaya and other Vaisnava sampradayas, etc.
Dear Ravindra Svarupa Prabhu, Please accept our humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada. The entire Governing Body Commission of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness wishes to extend its heartfelt gratitude to you for your many years of service to the GBC. You have served as a member of the GBC with the highest standard of integrity, loyalty and dedication. This is a great credit to both yourself and our spiritual master, Srila Prabhupada. For almost three decades, your thoughtful comments, academic and sastric insights, bold analysis and devotional perspectives have helped to inform and form GBC opinion and resolutions.
Generally, we work for our sense gratification. "I have got this money. I must use for my sense gratification or for my relative's sense gratification or for my country's sense gratification, for my society's sense gratification." So this is materialism. But when the same thing is turned for KášášŁáša's sense gratification, that is spiritual. That is the difference between prema and kÄma.
This work, "Srila Prabhupada: The Founder-Acarya of ISKCON", authored by Ravindra Svarupa Dasa, is officially endorsed by ISKCON's Governing Body Commission (GBC). The GBC requests all devotees and friends of ISKCON to give deep and careful attention to this work. To do so will broaden our collective understanding of, and appreciation for, the position of Srila Prabhupada and his unique role in the International Society for Krishna Consciousness.
It has come to our attention that there is some confusion regarding the purchase of Srila Prabhupada's books for mass distribution. It is the policy of ISKCON, clarified by Srila Prabhupada in the accompanying letter, that all ISKCON temples purchase the books of His Divine Grace from the BBT exclusively. "If temples print independently it will be at the cost of the books I am myself printing, and could eventually cause the financial ruin of the BBT, meaning I could not order new books from the printer or have sufficient funds for construction of temple projects."
The next question, about the living entities falling down in this material world are not from the impersonal brahman. Existence in the impersonal brahma is also within the category of non-Krsna consciousness. Those who are in the brahman effulgence they are also in the fallen condition, so there is no question of falling down from a fallen condition. When fall takes place, it means falling down from the non-fallen condition
Nov 23 2013 Sannyasis should not be given any money
Sannyasis should not be given any money. They should manage themselves and maintain themselves by taking small alms from different persons-not a lump sum from one person
The warning is already there, and responsible leaders of religious sects must meet together and form a common platform of a league of devotees of the Lord. There is no need for self-realized souls to live in a secluded place. Perfect self-realized souls, engaged in the service of the Lord, are unafraid of maya, just as law-abiding citizens of a state never fear the police
My Guru Maharaja used to say... He had so many temples all over India, and he used to say sometimes that "If by selling all these properties, temples, if I could turn one man to Krishna consciousness, then my mission will be successful."
Oct 13 2013 Letter to: Brahmananda
Regarding the MacMillan Company's printing Srimad-Bhagavatam, we may note herewith that the MacMillan's publication of the Bhagavad-gita As It Is and our publication of Teachings of Lord Caitanya is the difference between heaven and hell. In the Bhagavad-gita As It Is, we have cut short the pages under the instruction of the MacMillan Company, without explaining many important verses.
"Ekaki amara nahi paya bol". Caitanya Mahaprabhu Himself wanted our cooperation. He is God, Krsna. Therefore cooperation is very important thing. Nobody should think that 'I have got so great ability. I can do.' No. It is simply by cooperation we can do very big thing. 'United we stand; divided we fall.' So be strong in pushing on Krsna consciousness, and Krsna will help. He is the strongest.
We regret to inform you that the GBC Executive Committee has received a letter from Mahanidhi Swami, a disciple of Srila Prabhupada since 1975, announcing that he has "decided to resign from the glorious preaching mission of ISKCON". In a prayerful mood, we would like to comment briefly on this situation. As Vaishnavas, we understand that the obstacles of this material world are very difficult to overcome. Srila Prabhupada warned us that many stalwarts may fall from the path of Krishna consciousness if we are not cautious in the execution of our devotional service.
Jul 26 2013 BBT Only
Vaisesika Dasa, Vijaya Dasa, Navina Nirada Dasa: Dear faithful follower of Srila Prabhupada, Please accept our obeisances and best wishes. All glories to Srila Prabhupada.Here for your thoughtful attention is a letter from Srila Prabhupada, dated 14 March 1974, in which His Divine Grace expresses his clear directions regarding the publishing of his books. Srila Prabhupada sent this letter to all ISKCON centers throughout the world
Whereas harmony between various authorities in ISKCON is required; Whereas while initiating gurus are important spiritual authorities in the lives of devotees, other ISKCON authorities also play an important role; RESOLVED: That the official GBC paper entitled âHarmonizing ISKCONâs Lines of Authorityâ shall be required reading for all prospective harinama initiates before the initiation. This should be verified both by the ISKCON authority who gives the recommendation for harinama initiation as well as by the initiating guru
RESOLVED: (a) that ISKCON Law 22.214.171.124.6 be amended to include the following three questions in the test that all harinama initiation candidates must take before initiation: 14. Have you read the GBC Statement on the Position of Srila Prabhupada? 15. Have you read the paper âHarmonizing ISKCONâs Lines of Authorityâ? 16. What have you understood as the most important points of the âHarmonizing ISKCONâs Lines of Authorityâ paper? And (b), that the Guru Services Committee shall update the Initiation Exam accordingly for all GBCs and gurus to distribute.
Jun 23 2013 Female Diksa Guru Research Paper
RESOLVED: A GBC committee consisting of Bir Krishna Das Goswami (convenor), Bhanu Swami, Badrinarayan Das and Praghosa Das shall research and write a paper on the subject of female diksa gurus based on Srila Prabhupadaâs teachings, sastra, and historical precedents. The committee may enlist the service of other devotees including current members of the Sastric Advisory Council
Jun 16 2013 Bhaktivedanta Institute
RESOLVED: The GBC Body hereby commends the important and time-critical nature of the work of Rasaraja Das and Bhaktivedanta Institute Berkeley/Mumbai. The GBC members offer their heartfelt blessings to them for their continued excellence in devotional service.
RESOLVED: That the Executive Secretariat (ES) receives its mandate from the Governing Body Commission (GBC); the Secretariat reports and is accountable to the GBC. Throughout the year the ES works with the GBC Executive Committee (EC) in its role as representative of the GBC, to ensure and assist the ES to perform as mandated
Jun 3 2013 Licensing GCal Software
The ISKCON Governing Body Commission Society hereby agrees that its copyrighted software package âGaurabda Calendar (GCal)â authored by Gopalapriya Das may be licensed to members of the general public under a suitable open-source licensing agreement. The GBC Vaisnava Calendar Committee, presently constituted with members Bhanu Swami, Gopalapriya Das, Sadasivananda Das, and Bhaktarupa Das, are authorized, in consultation with legal advisors, to finalize the terms of such licensing agreements and devise policies and procedures whereby such agreements may be executed
The Anniversary Committee shall create a service description and appropriate goals for the Coordinator and support his or her seva up to and during the Anniversary. The Anniversary Committee and Anniversary Coordinator shall work with the GBC, Regional Governing Bodies, ISKCON Ministries, Temples, and other ISKCON communities and projects to encourage them in planning the celebration of the 50th Anniversary through multiple events. The Coordinator shall work closely with the Communications Ministry to promote internationally consistent messages, themes and event ideas
May 16 2013 Child Protection Policy Manual
In 1998 the GBC Body adopted resolution 305, which accepted in total the recommendations of the Child Protection Task Force âoutlining a justice system, central office, and various guidelines for GBC Members, Regional Secretaries and Temple Presidents to assure enforcement and implementationâ
May 9 2013 Zonal Configuration
Whereas the GBC Zonal Secretaries of many areas of the world together with other leaders of those areas have identified the zones that they wish to formally establish: RESOLVED: That the following zones have been identified. It is to be noted that the full implementation of these zones shall take place gradually, and that this process of identification does not affect or modify existing continental, regional or national bodies
ISKCON center officials shall be responsible to ensure that any and all web sites published by the center prominently feature a picture of Srila Prabhupada on the introductory page. This picture should be larger than any other individualâs photo (such as the GBC, center President, or guru). Srila Prabhupada should be addressed by his formal name and title: âHis Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, Founder-Acarya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness,â or âISKCON Founder-Acarya His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupadaâ, or an equivalent translation.
The Governing Body Commission (GBC) of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) offers its deepest appreciation to the members and leaders of the Bhaktivedanta Hospital in Mumbai for their excellent service and dedication to His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada and his ISKCON society
Many services we are fortunate to engage in are more or less what you might consider universal to most vaisnavas. Attending the morning program, chanting our rounds, honouring prasadam, going out on sankirtana, cooking for the Deities and the devotees, reading, writing, cleaning, growing flowers and vegetables, sewing, looking after the cows, teaching, administration etc., etc, etc.
Mar 11 2013 GBC Statement on Srila Prabhupada’s position
As the Founder-Acharya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) and the preeminent teacher and ultimate authority within our society, Srila Prabhupada has a unique relationship with every ISKCON devotee
The 5 million or so vegetarians residing in the UK must be feeling relieved at their dietary choice given the grotesque, unprecedented, bizarre and unacceptable horse meat controversy that shows no sign of abating in Europe. For the other 55 million or so non-vegetarians in the UK they have been thrown into considerable turmoil; one commented: "If horse meat were okay then our butchers would sell it"
Dec 6 2012 Understanding Iskconâs lines of authority
Several years ago the GBC embarked upon developing a systematic plan for the future of ISKCON. They selected several issues of primary importance to the movement and formed committees to discuss those issues. One of the committees was requested to study the divergent lines of authority within ISKCON and suggest a method for settling disagreements between them
These are the reports from the 2012 GBC and Strategic Planning midterm meetings for the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) that were held from October 21â26 in Tirupati, India. At gbc.iskcon.org there have been posted also audio reports from GBC members regarding the meetings and committee work, overall impressions, and experiences in Tirupati
A paper commissioned by the GBC Finance Committee and the GBC Organizational Development Committee. How ISKCON devotees collect, manage, and spend Krishnaâs laxmi generates much discussion, especially because we have little precedent as to how a structured Vaisnava organization conducts such matters. That said, few, if any, would argue the importance of the twin principles of accountability and using all monies received directly in the service of Krishna and ISKCONâs preaching mission
Aug 12 2012 Actions and Consequences
It is seemingly becoming commonplace in our society now for such weapon wielding aggressors to cause grief, misery, pain, suffering and of course great mourning to an unsuspecting audience. One of many worrying aspects of these senseless killings is the cool, calm and measured way they are undertaken. Practically since time immemorial we are familiar with crimes of passion, those crimes are even recognised by the judicial system to the point of mitigating circumstances being considered
Jun 11 2012 Understanding ISKCON’s Lines of Authority
Please find below the final, official version of the GBC Understanding ISKCON's Lines of Authority paper. The themes of this paper were approved at the GBC AGM in Mayapur this February. This final version has taken into consideration all comments received in Mayapur and thereafter. The release of this version as the full and final paper has been approved by the GBC executive committee
Mar 28 2012 GBC resolutions 2012
Whereas there is a continued need to educate new devotees in ISKCON about the pre-eminent position of Srila Prabhupada as (a) Our Founder-Acarya and (b) The primary siksa-guru for all ISKCON members; Whereas it will benefit both individual devotees and the ISKCON society at large to improve the standards of discipleship within our movement; And whereas there is a lack of formal training regarding what it means to be a disciple within ISKCON and how to properly execute the duties of a disciple towards oneâs diksa- and siksa-gurus as well as the mission of Srila Prabhupada: RESOLVED: 1. That the Governing Body Commission recommends that all prospective disciples and aspiring initiates attend the ISKCON Disciple Course prior to their initiation, preferably before choosing an initiating spiritual master. Other members of ISKCON are also encouraged to take the course
That all ISKCON temples, congregations, yatras, and devotees please; 1. Include Yamuna Maharani in their daily prayers. 2. Explain the spiritual importance of Shri Yamuna Maharani to others. 3. Organize special kirtans or dedicate existing kirtans to the Yamuna cause. 4. Organize special programs or dedicate existing programs to the Yamuna cause.
Feb 24 2012 GBC’s Host the 1st Iskcon Leadership Sanga
The GBC recognizes that good, strong leadership is key both to ISKCONâs improvement and its ongoing success. In an effort to support and encourage such leadership, the GBC invited more than 500 ISKCON leaders from 42 countries around the world to assemble in Sridham Mayapur for the ILS from February 10-17 to participate in portions of the GBCâs AGM, to attend and discuss presentations on the last several years of GBC strategic planning efforts, and to spend time with one another in devotional sanga.
Jan 11 2012 Mayapur Gaura Purnima Schedule
This year Gaur Purnima Festival will be a little different, for the first 4 days the focus is on re-learning to chant from our hearts, a four day Kirtan Mela with the world's best kirtaniyas headed by Sacinandana swami and Madhava prabhu. You can find more details on this particular aspect of the festival at KirtanMela.org
Dec 16 2011 Please sign the petitions
Today we received the testimony of the experts from Kemerovo State ... University. As it should have been expected, it is highly negative. We uploaded the petition. It is self-explanatory, and formulated in such a way that not only ISKCON devotees can vote
Dec 5 2011 Our Petition!
The new "Church Law" in Hungary will take away ISKCON Hungary's church status as of January 1st requiring us to re-apply for the same next year. However the government has not provided any legal stipulation for the society's continued ownership of Krsna Valley's lands in the interim period until we are again re-registered. In short we risk losing Krsna Valley with no pasture for our cows or land to grow our food