By Nrsimhananda das
I am happy to report that the GBC passed my proposal to make Srila Prabhupada’s presence on the home page of all Iskcon temples and preaching centers an official guideline of the Society. Srila Prabhupada’s picture is currently MIA (missing in action) on numerous temple websites around the world including Delhi, Los Angeles, Hungary (Krishna Valley), Saranagati Village (Canada), Chile, Equador, Pune, Hong Kong, Melbourne, Durban, Germany – Simachalam & Wiesbaden,&Leipzig & Hamburg, Bhakti Center New York City, etc. Even my own ITV website needs to be improved, so I am not above reproach either. I have only reviewed a few of the hundreds, but this brief exercise reveals enough to know that there is a pervasive oversight or omission of Srila Prabhupada’s direct order to placing his name and title front and center of any Iskcon related project. Please check the home page of your local temple or preaching center (“Iskcon center includes both) and encourage your leaders to comply with the guidelines of the resolution. In this way, we can – together – keep Srila Prabhupada’s prominent position front and center throughout the generations. I want to express my gratitude to the first co-sponsor of this proposal, H.G. Malati dd, and to the other co-sponsors who joined along the way to passage including HH Niranjana Swami, HH Sivarama Swami, HH Bhakti Purusottama Swami, HH Bhakti Chaitanya Swami, HH Bhanu Swami, HG Tamohar prabhu, HG Sesa prabhu, and HG Praghosa prabhu,
Basically, the only change to my original proposal was the exclusion of an oversight committee to review the websites and report the results to the GBC. You’ll notice that these are “guidelines,” which means that there is no enforcement powers by the GBC. Therefore, you, the congregation/members are the ones who must influence the local leadership to abide by this standard. We are, after all, a volunteer organization. Srila Prabhupada wanted the individual temples to have autonomy. Centralization was not approved by him. So the GBC has wisely couched this proposal in the mood of recommendations. Now it is up to us to see that it is implemented.
I tried to get more co-sponsors for the proposal. I approached many more GBC’s than signed on. I was either ignored or rejected. I don’t know the voting tally. I would hope that the passage would have been unanimous. However, I realize that not all the leaders see this issue in the same way. I know that many are pained to see Srila Prabhupada’s position de-emphasized consciously or unconsciously. I guess that would necessarily be unconsciously!
If you face resistance to changing the existing websites through whatever reasons (nobody to do it, too expensive, won’t attract the newcomers, etc.), you are welcome to consult with me on how to achieve your objectives (firstname.lastname@example.org).
This proposal is a sister resolution to the one that I submitted last year – that all guru websites must feature Srila Prabhupada on their home page similarly. That one passed also.
I wish that I could keep Srila Prabhupada in the center of all of my personal activities as much as I have been able to promote his presence on these websites. I admit to not walking my talk in that regard. However, I look to the leaders for inspiration for making Srila Prabhupada’s words and deeds the centerpiece of my life. Therefore, I have selfishly promoted these two resolutions so that I can steal some inspiration from their efforts.
Thank all the GBC’s who voted to adopt this resolution. Please help to implement it within the 90 day period.
YS, Nrsimhananda das