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Comments Posted By narottama dasanudasa

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I wonder why you critique liberalism as “insidious” and speak of it in such a derisive tone. The opposite of liberal is conservative. Someone who is conservative believes in preserving the way things have been done, tradition, etc. It could be argued that a conservative would always disagree with the changes implemented by an acarya; who we often define as someone who adjusts things according to time, place and circumstance. Our Srila Prabhupada was considered wildly liberal, especially socially, for his revolutionary steps towards including women in his preaching mission.

My point is that you may want to consider if liberal=bad. I would suggest that we must be liberal – willing to change; in order to successfully spread bhakti in our times.

You have quoted Srila Bhaktivinoda, another revolutionary for his time and a very liberal acarya. Despite his liberal presentation of Krsna bhakti, we live in a different time also. The tall order for us is to become acaryas and successfully present Krsna bhakti in our time.

You say: “Indeed, we should encourage and assist each other in transcending the bodily concept which binds us to this material world, rather than reinforcing it each time we meet.”

It was almost humorous to me when I read this statement because I was agreeing with you whole-heartedly until I read the next sentence: “What may appear to be a harmless hug can actually bind one further to the material platform in subtle ways.”

Can I suggest that the constant reinforcement of bodily consciousness also occurs by the repeated emphasis of “you are not the body” and the dangers of men and women associating? I am not suggesting a lack of social etiquette between men and women, but rather that as mature, hopefully spiritually progressive people, we should aim for the loving exchanges (bhakti) to dwarf our absorption in “not the body” consciousness (vedanta). We don’t want to focus too much on vedanta at the expense of bhakti.

I may be a liberal, but I know I feel great joy in hugging my mother’s on this path and I pray for their continued affection.

» Posted By narottama dasanudasa On Aug 31, 2006 @ 4:50 pm

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