Comments Posted By gkd
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I also deliberately always write Krsna, Caitanya, Vaisnava, Srila, etc., with not diacritics.
But “Iskcon” is plain wrong. Being an acronym for “International Society for Krishna [not Krsna] Consciousness,” it goes all caps (although one might suggest that “ISKCon” is the actually correct rendering).
» Posted By gkd On Jan 25, 2014 @ 9:42 am
“I am thus compelled to ask: “Did Akruranatha P. NOT EVER read the above, well-known statement?” … Yet he also stated: “And he never wrote or spoke anywhere that women were disqualified from serving as initiating gurus.” Does something seem awry here? Will Akruranatha P. explain?”
I have explained repeatedly, I do not read the purport about Suniti to directly address the question, “may a woman ever serve as diksa guru?”
Granted, as conditioned souls we will not necessarily understand the true meaning of anything that we perceive via our obviously imperfect senses. Any one of us may sometimes misunderstand words whose meaning is self-evident to others. Admitting this obvious fault within our conditioned self, shouldn’t we therefore be very careful to not make absolute statements that may well be proven wrong?
You have publicly declared that Srila Prabhupada “never wrote or spoke anywhere” that women are disqualified from serving as diska-gurus. It is an absolute statement: “He never wrote…”
But your assertion is not only unverifiable but soundly refuted by Srila Prabupada’s own words: “Being a woman, [Suniti] could not become Dhruva Mahäräja’s dékñä-guru.”
We should consider the totality of what Srila Prabhupada said and try to determine what he meant without being guided by preconceived positions.
We all know that taking birth in a certain family does not automatically qualify one as a bona fide guru, (nor can taking birth in such a family be considered a prerequisite for being a guru). However, can we extrapolate from the above that every guru from a caste-goswami lineage has been bogus?
No such conclusion has been proposed. The simple point is this:
The argument that “There have been many women diksa-gurus in Gaudiya Vaisnava history” is rejected due to their being from jati-gosai lineages. This argument must be rejected, but not that those Vaisnavi gurus per se are being discounted.
I think we should be cautious about disparaging all of them (and all their disciples and supporters) as “bogus” without looking into the matter more closely.
Again, this was not done. And neither is it wrong to disparage specious “evidence” (by citing jati-gosai examples) that there have been female diksa-gurus within our line.
» Posted By gkd On Dec 6, 2013 @ 8:38 pm
Nevertheless, they may become pure devotees and professors of the science of Krsna, and if such women (like Queen Kunti and Draupadi and Parvati and Devaki and Radharani) can teach us about Krsna, they are our gurus.
Indeed they are our gurus. But as has been explained over and again, they were not diksa-gurus!
Nor will this statement disappear: “According to sastric injunctions, there is no difference between siksa-guru and diksa-guru, and generally the siksa-guru later on becomes the diksa-guru. Suniti, however, being a woman, and specifically his mother, could not become Dhruva Maharaja’s diksa-guru.”
There is no difference, yet there is a difference. And the difference must not be side-stepped or discounted. Pro-FDG arguments persistently stress the non-difference without ever reconciling the difference. Being a woman was no disqualification for Suniti to be a siksa-guru., but it definitely did preclude her from being a diksa-guru.
What is the difficulty to understand and accept this?
In a comment to a different article, Akruranatha P. asked, “Did Srila Prabhupada EVER say that women cannot be diksa gurus?”
I am thus compelled to ask: “Did Akruranatha P. NOT EVER read the above, well-known statement?” Of course he has read it. Yet he also stated: “And he never wrote or spoke anywhere that women were disqualified from serving as initiating gurus.”
Does something seem awry here? Will Akruranatha P. explain?
Nor have we yet read any convincing refutations of these points (in the article by Basu Ghosh P.):
To begin with, when a woman can’t wear the sacred thread – the yajnopavita – then how can she give one as a part of initiation? Srila Prabhupada followed the system of initiation introduced by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur. Srila Saraswati Thakur introduced the brahmin thread – yajnopavita – for persons not born in brahmana families.
Srila Prabhupada introduced such initiations – for men. For women, he never conferred the yajnopavita! Therefore, how can a woman give a sacred thread as a part (“anga” in Samskritam) of “diksa” if she herself does not/cannot wear it? This historical fact should be sufficient in itself as evidence that women were not to be diksa gurus.
Perhaps Akruranatha P. would kindly respond to these essential points of pancaratrika-viddhi.
» Posted By gkd On Dec 4, 2013 @ 8:30 pm
I offer a humble perspective regarding the excerpt quoted from the January 1969 letter:
Given that Srila Prabhupada taught, both in theory and practice, that all women should be married, it is not illogical to propose that the statement “Maybe by 1975 all of my disciples will be allowed to initiate” means that grhastha men would be allowed to initiate, but not that their wives also would initiate. I proffer that “all of my disciples” is a generic expression meant to include all women disciples as the better half of their respective husband. In other words, if during his prakata-lila all of Srila Prabhupada’s grhastha male disciples had become Bhaktivedantas and hence were instructed to become a diska-guru, then Srila Prabhupada could have rightly stated: “All of my householder disciples are initiating spiritual masters.” Again, when we duly consider the full gamut of Srila Prabhupada’s teachings, and also Vedic culture, guru-sadhu-sastra, and so on, it is indeed simply common sense to conclude that this statement is factually not at all an indication that Srila Prabhupada wanted his female disciples to initiate. (?!)
So much can be said about this. But, dear esteemed readers, kindly consider the following situation: Some number of Srila Prabhupada’s female disciples had/have passed the Bhaktivedanta exam and thus are now qualified “to initiate.” As Bhaktivedantas, these exalted ladies must have thoroughly learned and understood Gaudiya Vaisnava siddhanta, Vedic standards, stri-dharma, etc. Consequently, as chaste wives of their respective husband, such women would naturally serve their husband in his capacity as a diksa-guru. Being philosophically astute, they would be capable of providing excellent siksa to (especially) any female disciples whom he had accepted. Such pairs of husband-wife guru would be quite efficacious for ministering to the general populace, most being neophytes (whereas brahmanas and sannayasis would be available to especially guide the more advanced devotees. Brahmacarinis and widows would generally restrict their preaching to women only.)
The dire need in this dense darkness of Kali-yuga is for countless self-realized light-of-knowledge-bearing siksa-gurus, not necessarily many diksa-gurus. Moreover, anyone not yet fully self-realized should perhaps vehemently shun the prospect of becoming another’s “guru.”
» Posted By gkd On Dec 2, 2013 @ 3:43 am
To me, it sounds that “not so many” ultimately refers to both men and women. Otherwise, why would Srila Prabhupada states that “But man or woman, unless one has attained perfection…”?
I wonder how many, or few, devotees understand it in that way.
The question was specifically whether a woman can become guru within the sampradaya. And Srila Prabhupada answered: “Yes … But, not so many.”
I am surprised that anyone, what to speak of an experienced editor, would think that not so many, in this specific sentence (not in general, please :), would refer also to men.
I have intentionally omitted the words spoken between Yes and But to emphasize that not so many logically refers to women. Since those words were specifically about Jahnava Mata, again the logical conclusion is that not so many refers to women.
Moreover, Srila Prabhupada continues by saying: “Actually one who has attained the perfection, she can become guru.” If the previously spoken words not so many were meant to refer to both men and women, why would Srila Prabhupada at this point specifically say she here? It does not follow.
Finally, having answered the original question, Srila Prabhupada does speak of both men and women: “But, man or woman, unless one has attained the perfection…” That he begins the sentence with but indicates that now he will speak not only about women “but man or woman.”
» Posted By gkd On Dec 1, 2013 @ 8:58 pm
When directly asked about it he said that women could be gurus.
Is there proof that Srila Prabhupada was directly asked this question? Because the letter per se does not even hint at that.
And he never wrote or spoke anywhere that women were disqualified from serving as initiating gurus.
“Suniti, however, being a woman, and specifically his mother, could not become Dhruva Maharaja’s diksa-guru.” (SB 4.12.32, p)
Certainly one meaning of this sentence is clearly: “Being a woman, Suniti could not become a diksa-guru.”
» Posted By gkd On Dec 1, 2013 @ 1:43 am
Who is this “Raadhaa-MudHUV”?
(That’s really all that i want to comment, but the minimum acceptable comment is 100 characters – hence this additional parenthetical comment)
» Posted By gkd On Oct 28, 2013 @ 9:26 pm
Thank you, William, for this contribution!
[One slight correction:]
Although many would consider (whether negatively or positively) that Aindra P. did indeed besiege devotees “again and again” with his transcendentally impassioned pleas that we do more maha-mantra harinama-sankirtana, in the above-quoted speech given in Mayapur Aindra Prabhu actually said, “I beseech you again and again.” :)
» Posted By gkd On Jul 13, 2013 @ 5:55 pm
I am surprised that Dandavats has posted “To Vote or Not to Vote” on this scrolling “Announcements and Ads,” for many less mature or simple devotees will misconstrue that Dandavats (and hence ISKCON) thus endorses the current Democratic, rather than the Republican, candidate for the U.S. presidency.
If Dandavats does in fact endorse the Democratic candidate, then would it not be more proper to publish an official pronouncement to that effect–with sound reasoning supported by sastra-guru-sadhu as to why Vaisnavas should indeed vote for the Democratic candidate?
But if Dandavats actually does not support either candidate, then we humbly submit that it is only fitting–i.e., fair and proper–to also post this announcement.
Madhavananda Prabhu has already provided sufficient words of ISKCON’s founder-acarya on the subject of voting. For example:
“Because of the importance of the Krishna consciousness movement, people should be Krishna conscious and should not vote for anyone who is not Krishna conscious.”
Since neither the Democratic nor the Republican candidate for the U.S. presidency is known to be Krishna conscious, we therefore humbly appeal to all readers of Dandavats to simply follow Srila Prabhupada’s advice and “not vote for anyone who is not Krishna conscious.” If it has not been factually ascertained that either the Democratic or the Republican candidate is Krishna conscious, then the only responsible conclusion–that which is faithful to the instructions of our founder-acarya–is therefore obviously:
Thank you very much.
humbly aspiring to become a genuine Prabhupdadanuga,
this most unworthy servant called
» Posted By gkd On Oct 29, 2008 @ 9:25 am
Namonamah. All glory to Srila Prabhupada!
Long time no contact! But recently i have again been appreciating your advanced association via your writings posted here (and elsewhere :).
Please send me an email so that we may sometimes keep in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org
Kirtaniyah sada harih!
–nitya-baddha das(abhasa), guru-krsna das
jagai madhai haite muni se papistha/ purisera kita haite muni se laghistha
» Posted By gkd On Sep 8, 2008 @ 12:53 pm
Ashwin 108 wrote: ‘I think that the singer is Bada Hari Dasa Prabhu. Is it so?”
That is correct.
I wonder if anyone can provide a link for downloading that particular bhajan (”Keno Hare Krsna Nama”) sung by him?
» Posted By gkd On Mar 31, 2008 @ 1:50 am
Undoubtedly there are many reasons, philosophical and pragmatic, why the death penalty is necessary within human society.
I ask those who favor abolishment of capital punishment:
Has any authorized representative of the Supreme Lord authorized anyone on this planet to eradicate the death penalty?
(Since capital punishment is an aspect of divine judiciary, why would any fallible human, be he even a Vaisnava, opine that capital punishment should be eliminated from human society?)
The notion to abolish the death penalty is hereby sentenced to death!
» Posted By gkd On Dec 12, 2007 @ 10:33 am
“Sarvo” wrote: I especially love it when people come up to me and say, “Hare Krishna! Where have you guys been anyway?”
So where are *you* now? Prabhu, please send me an email: email@example.com
your fallen servant,
» Posted By gkd On Dec 6, 2007 @ 3:29 am
Suresh Prabhu wrote: “There is only one picture missing from the above temple photo spread. It’s humorous too, because I have shown this article to several devotees now, and every one noticed the one photo that’s missing from the new Bhakta program. Can you guess which one it is?”
» Posted By gkd On Oct 31, 2007 @ 1:17 pm
1) “I certainly didn’t expect the magnitude of the surprise that Chinna gave us
that night. … They played for 45 minutes, and when they finished their
final song the kids shouted for more….”
2) After Chinna got the signal he turned to Tribuvanesvara and nodded his head. ….
“When the kirtan finally finished many in the audience stood stunned, having experienced the nectar of the holy names.”
Are either of these two performances available on the internet?
» Posted By gkd On Sep 3, 2007 @ 9:34 pm
How does one post a query to the Message Board?
» Posted By gkd On May 23, 2007 @ 9:29 pm
«« Back To Stats Page
[Amara:] Personally, I don’t see how gay marriage relates with the advancement of Kali-yuga. Gay unions are mentioned in the ancient Kama Shastra scriptures of India and have obviously been around for a long time.>
[Humble inquiry] Exactly what mention does homosexuality get in kama-sastra?
[Amara:] The fact that modern society is now accommodating gay people
[Humble interjection:] …is most certainly a symptom of the advance of Kali-yuga! Who can deny it? Abortion also accomodated, so many other varieties of perverse sex also accomodated, open prostitution accomodated, nearly-naked women in public accomodated, gambling also accomodated… The list of sinful activity that was not accomodated 50 years ago but is accomodated today is ever increasing.
[Amara:] I don’t see how anyone can honestly argue that we should not encourage people to be monogamous rather than promiscuous. The purpose here is not to encourage or endorse illicit sex but rather to minimize it as far as possible.
[Humble statement of fact:] If the goal is in fact to minimize the perverse homosexual activity “as far as possible,” then surely one will accept the prescription given by our founder-acarya Srila Prabhupada: marry a woman and live as normal husband and wife. Obviously “gay marriage” falls short of this instruction.
And one might consider that alcoholics are mostly not cured by restricting their drinking to one kind of alcoholic beverage, but rather by lifelong total abstention.
[Amara:] devotees like Krsna-kirti dasa and Danavir Swami seem to be saying, “It’s complete celibacy or nothing! If gays can’t follow complete, lifelong celibacy then we don’t want to help them, offer any practical advice or even have them living outside the temple as householders.”
[Humble response:] Perhaps read more carefully exactly what they have said. But i propose that any person afflicted with the disease of homosexuality should seriously consider trying for exactly that–complete lifelong celibacy. Only if unable to remain fixed in complete celibate, then they can choose the bona fide option of marriage–not homosexual so-called marriage, but legitmate dharmic marriage. Was that not Srila Prabhupada’s program for the few homosexual men who had joined during his time?
>There should be no question which approach is more helpful in encouraging Krsna consciousness among the gay and lesbian Vaishnava community.
[Humble agreement:] Indeed there should be no question that the most helpful approach will be to follow the simple advice/instruction given by Srila Prabhupada: marry a woman and lead a normal household life.
[Amara:] I think devotees need to learn to engage all members of society whether celibate, monogamous or even those who are completely fallen. Krsna consciousness is not only for temple devotees and strict brahmanas. It is for everyone at all levels.
[HUmble comment:] Indeed the practice of Krsna consciousness is open to the most fallen–which category certainly includes homosexuals. But sruti smriti puranadi … If the so-called practice of bhakti-yoga is not according to sastric injuctions and the instructions of previous Vaisnava acaryas, then it is “simply a disturbance to society.”
The concept of “gay monogomy” is exactly such a disturbance to the society of sincere and humble Vaisnavas. Hence, my humble appeal to all “gay Vaisnavas” is to immediately cease being a disturbance to the society of genuine Vaisnavas. Please chant Hare Krsna incessantly and follow the four regulative principles to the best of your ability and thereby yourselves become genuine Vaisnavas. But please STOP the nonsensical, whimsical, and speculative attempt to rubber-stamp “gay monogomy” as if it were something other than a unwelcome disturbance to Vaisnava society!
–a most fallen conditioned soul named
» Posted By gkd On Mar 6, 2007 @ 4:16 pm
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