Living Guru

What is your idea of living? A moving body? A warm body? The body is never living. It is the soul, the spirit within the body. … The spirit of Srila Prabhupada is there in his book. The spirit of Srila Prabhupada is there in his surrendered disciples who understand that they are his servants and not his successors.

Reading from Srimad-Bhagavatam with Hansadutta das, Singapore, October 1993, originally published in Every Town & Village, Vol 8, No 1 (Singapore & Malaysia distribution only)

Spirit is living; matter is dead. The spirit is living. We must get the spirit of Srila Prabhupada. If we get the spirit of Srila Prabhupada from his sincere servant… if he is in the spirit of serving his spiritual master, then whoever associates and hears from such a person is in touch with the living spiritual master.

Follow Perfect Instruction Free from Speculation

Srimad-Bhagavatam 2.9.29, text & purport:

TRANSLATION: “Please tell me so that I may be taught in the matter by the instruction of the Personality of Godhead and may thus act instrumentally to generate living entities without being conditioned by such activities.”

PURPORT: Brahmaji does not want to become a speculator dependent on the strength of his personal knowledge and conditioned to material bondage. Everyone should know in clear consciousness that one is, in the execution of all activities, an instrument. A conditioned soul is instrumental in the hands of the external energy, gunamayi maya, or the illusory energy of the Lord, and in the liberated stage the living entity is instrumental to the will of the Supreme Personality of Godhead directly. To be instrumental to the direct will of the Lord is the natural, constitutional position of the living entity, whereas to be an instrument in the hands of the illusory energy of the Lord is material bondage for the living entity. In that conditioned state, the living entity speculates on the Absolute Truth and His different activities. But in the unconditioned stage, the living entity directly receives knowledge from the Lord, and such a liberated soul acts flawlessly, without any speculative habit. The Bhagavad-gita (10.10-11) confirms emphatically that the pure devotees, who are constantly engaged in the loving transcendental service of the Lord, are directly advised by the Lord, so much so that the devotee unwaveringly makes progress on the path home, back to Godhead. Pure devotees of the Lord are therefore not proud of their definite progress, whereas the non-devotee speculator is in the darkness of illusory energy and is very much proud of his misleading knowledge based on speculation without any definite path. Lord Brahma wanted to be saved from the pitfall of pride, although he was posted in the most exalted position within the universe.

This is interesting that we’re reading this verse today, because here is Lord Brahma, the first living being, and he says that he wants to be taught in the matter of the instructions of the Personality of Godhead and act as an instrument to generate living entities without being conditioned by such activities. He wants to be an instrument in the hands of the Lord. He doesn’t want to create his own ideas or his own program, and he doesn’t want to become affected by the results of his own activities.

The same thing is going on in our Krishna conscious movement. The pure devotee, the Acharya Srila Prabhupada, is directly in touch with the Lord and receives directly knowledge from the Lord, and he acts flawlessly, without any speculative habits. So the spiritual master… our spiritual master, Srila Prabhupada, being situated on the liberated platform, is acting directly under the instructions of the Lord. How? By acting completely submissive to the order of his spiritual master, by acting on behalf of his spiritual master and carrying out the order of his spiritual master, doing everything on behalf of his spiritual master. And by that arrangement, the channel of communication goes through his spiritual master and the spiritual masters and acharyas preceding him to the Lord and back.

Similarly, as his disciples, it is our function, our position to act one hundred percent as his agent, as his representative, as his deputy—not manufacturing anything new or novel or unique, thereby drawing attention to our imperfect, speculative intelligence. We are not in the liberated condition of life. We are in the conditioned existence, and therefore, if we do not act one hundred percent according to his order, we will become entangled in the reactions of our speculative knowledge.

Lord Brahma is the greatest, most powerful living being within the universe. He is the first spiritual master, because he receives knowledge directly from Krishna. But he never acts on his own or independently. He never thinks, “Now I am an enlightened personality. I shall create the universe, and all these living entities will be under my command, and I will thereby enjoy prestige to the maximum degree.” No. He thinks of himself as subject to become entangled and conditioned by his activities. So he prays to the Lord that he should be instructed at every step of the way and only act according to the order of the Lord, and in this way remain free from the responsibility or the reaction of his own activities. That is the principle of spiritual life.

After the disappearance of Srila Prabhupada, some of his disciples wanted to act independently. They wanted to be the central controlling personality. They wanted to take the post of Srila Prabhupada, and thereby they created so many problems. Instead of acting as they acted in his presence, they wanted now to be the center and dictate everything, control everything, possess everything. Instead of continuing to act as the servant of the spiritual master, they wanted to be the spiritual master. And therefore the whole thing has come to a standstill.

I know what you are thinking. Sometimes you are thinking, “Well, here we are all alone.” But we are not alone. We are actually with Srila Prabhupada. We are with Srila Prabhupada, because we are trying to serve him as his instrument and not be him. We are not trying to be Srila Prabhupada or imitate his position or take his position and capture so much respect and honor for ourselves, capture disciples for ourselves. We are trying to act as his instrument, and offer all the credit, all the honor and prestige to his lotus feet and depend on him cent percent. So we are not alone. We are in fact … perhaps this is the beginning of the Krishna conscious movement, as Srila Prabhupada wanted it or envisioned it right now.

The GBC guru-acharyas have taken the post of Srila Prabhupada, they have taken the temples of Srila Prabhupada, they have taken the devotees of Prabhupada, and they have taken the new students for themselves instead of offering and directing them to Prabhupada and training them to be the servants of Prabhupada.

Therefore the whole thing is a material endeavor. It is an endeavor to improve one’s material prestige. To think one’s self as the spiritual master, as the guru means falling into the next-to-last pitfall of the illusory energy—”I am guru, I am the spiritual master; therefore, everyone should honor me, everyone should serve me. I know all and everything, I am the lord of all I survey.” This is the epitome of material enjoyment. It is the apex of sense gratification. The final pitfall is to think one’s self Krishna, thinking that “I am Krishna, I am God.”

Because this fever has infected everyone’s heart, this Krishna consciousness movement cannot spread. And although everyone is claiming, “Prabhupada! Prabhupada in the centerl” the fact is they have put themselves in the center by using Srila Prabhupada’s name, his books, his temples, his devotees and the disciples who are coming on account of all these opulences. They have taken them also as their property. And the whole thing is a disaster.

The disciple is always a servant of the spiritual master. When he serves the spiritual master in that humble mood, the spiritual master can utilise such a humble servant or disciple for the satisfaction of Krishna, and in that way, through that principle of disciplic succession, guru parampara, this movement will spread and no other way.

So don’t feel bad that we are alone. We are not alone. We are actually with Prabhupada. We are associating with Prabhupada. We must not let our mind become fascinated with the so-called opulence which has been captured and carried away by our godbrothers, who are sitting on it just as businessmen sit on a warehouse of goods. It’s not a loss, this apparent loss. It is not a loss. It is just bricks and cement and material possessions, and their so-called followers are also material possessions who are deriving no benefit whatsoever from following such leaders, who are all disconnected on account of this ambitious, aggressive mood of taking the post of the spiritual master.

Hare Krishna. I think this verse is very appropriate. Any questions?

BHIMA: The devotee’s view is that Prabhupada is no longer here, and ISKCON is saying that we need a living guru to direct us.

HANSADUTTA: Spirit is living; matter is dead. The spirit is living. We must get the spirit of Srila Prabhupada. If we get the spirit of Srila Prabhupada from his sincere servant… if he is in the spirit of serving his spiritual master, then whoever associates and hears from such a person is in touch with the living spiritual master.

The spiritual master, first of all, is not this body. The spiritual master is Krishna. There are two aspects of Krishna. One is Krishna the master, and one is Krishna the servant. Krishna the master is served in this material world perfectly by Krishna the servant, who is known as the guru or the spiritual master. That is the process.

The spiritual master does not claim that he is the spiritual master. He never claims that. Even Lord Chaitanya never claimed, “I am Krishna.” He claimed, “I am the servant.” That is the mystery of transcendental life. Krishna is the Supreme Living Being, and He is saying, “I am the servant.” And the living being is infinitesimal, minute, insignificant, and he is claiming, “I am the master.” That is his illusion.

Spiritual existence means everyone is in the mood of servant. Everyone is thinking, “I am servant. I am servant. I am servant.” In material life, everyone is thinking, “I am master, I am intelligent, I know, I have control, I possess this, this is mine.” This is the mystery. Therefore this assumption to the throne of the spiritual master by our godbrothers with such arrogance and with such ambition and determination is the symptom of their material conception of life. We are the servant of the spiritual master. That is the correct understanding.

What is the service? Our service is to teach others what he taught us. Our service is to help others to begin, to initiate them into spiritual life and give them instructions, as we received them, and to direct such inquisitive and submissive and sincere students to worship and honor and respect and follow the instructions of Srila Prabhupada. That is our service to him. Then this movement will expand. People will be happy. There will be no exploitation. No illusion. No misunderstanding.

BHIMA: The present gurus are referring to Srila Prabhupada as posthumous guru and that we need a living guru who can give practical instructions.

HANSADUTTA: We need to follow the instructions of the mahajanas. Why did he [Srila Prabhupada] say that? They’re not living. They’re dead. Why do we say it? “Follow the mahajanas.” Why do we say, “Read Bhagavad-gita?” Krishna is dead. He’s not here. Why do we worship Vyasadeva? He’s dead. He’s not here. Why do we chant the Holy Name? Why do we read these books? Why do we look at these pictures of Krishna and Srila Prabhupada, Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakur and Bhaktisiddhanta Prabhupada? Why? They’re dead. “We need a living….” What is your idea of living? A moving body? A warm body? The body is never living. It is the soul, the spirit within the body. This book is paper and ink. Why do we read it? It is only paper and ink, it is matter. Because the spirit of Krishna is there in the instructions. The spirit of Srila Prabhupada is there in his book. The spirit of Srila Prabhupada is there in his surrendered disciples who understand that they are his servants and not his successors. We are not his successors. We are his servants. So the servant can broadcast the spirit. He can carry … he does carry the spirit of Srila Prabhupada. He carries the spirit of Srila Prabhupada. But if you want or insist on a warm body, then you may not get the spirit. You may just get that body, flesh and bones.

BHIMA: In the latest BTG, there is a discussion on accepting a guru, and they quote this verse [Bhagavad-gita 4.34], tad viddhi pranipatena pariprashnena…, that you need a living guru.

HANSADUTTA: Well, it doesn’t say “living guru.” It says tad viddhi pranipatena pariprashnena sevaya, that you should “Approach the spiritual master, inquire from him submissively, render him all kinds of service; the self-realized soul can impart knowledge unto you, because he has seen the Truth.”

The spiritual master doesn’t have to be there in flesh and blood. It’s not a flesh and blood exchange, like a man and woman having a love affair. It is a spiritual exchange. The spiritual master may be only present by his instructions in the form of shastras or in the form of his servant, who can instruct you. In that sense he is a spiritual master, but he does not canvass, he does not canvass for that designation. He does not aspire to that designation. He does not politick for this designation, and he doesn’t think of himself in terms of that designation. He thinks, “My spiritual master is the guru, and I am his servant. You want to know about spiritual Iife? I can tell you what I learned from him.” This principle is there. We must know the thing on the principle.

Why are we reading Krishna’s words? It’s only paper and ink. If there is no life, how is it spiritual? How is Bhagavad-gita spiritual? lt’s spiritual because of the spirit of the instruction. Not the paper and ink. The paper and ink are not spiritual. It is the spirit of the instruction, the spirit of the book. They are stressing on the body. We are stressing on the spirit.

What are the instructions? They are spiritual. They are not material. When you make yourself the proprietor of those instructions, they become material. Spirit can become matter, and matter can become spirit. Visa versa. just like people take Krishna to be matter, so for you He is matter. He reciprocates. Those who see Krishna as material, Krishna reciprocates with them—”Okay, that’s all right.” And those who see Krishna as spirit, then He reciprocates as spirit. For those who take this as a book of philosophy only, for them it is philosophy, and they become professors in the school. But those who take it as Krishna, as spirit, they become spiritualized, and they get Krishna. Everything… there is nothing but Krishna, so everything in that sense is spiritual, but it takes on this material quality on account of our vision. Our viewpoint is material—”It’s mine, my house, my wife, my children, my book, my disciple.” Everything becomes material as soon as you try to claim it as your property. When we submit that everything is Krishna’s energy, Krishna’s property and that we are also meant for His satisfaction, then everything reveals itself as it is, Krishna reveals Himself, the spiritual master reveals himself. This is transcendental mystery.

“You need a living guru.” What do they mean by “living”? Do they mean to say that Srila Prabhupada is dead? Do they mean to say that Krishna is dead? Lord Chaitanya is dead? Vyasadeva is dead?

If you say we need to have someone physically present giving instructions, that also is not a fact. That is helpful, but it is not a fact. It is not a fact. Because there are many examples of boys and girls who received Srila Prabhupada’s books, and although he was not physically present, by reading and capturing the spirit, they became awakened to Krishna consciousness. It is not true that I need a living body through which this message, this spirit will come. It will come through the book, or it may come through the sincere servant, and you may accept him as a spiritual master, but he will be in his heart just a servant of his spiritual master. He will think of himself, carry himself and relate himself as the servant of his spiritual master, although he may be honored as a spiritual master.

But the fact is Srila Prabhupada asked his students to be his rittvik representatives, his deputies, because they are not perfect, and they are subject to be bewildered by the material energy. But if they sincerely act as his representative, as his servant, as his deputy, as his rittvik, in due course of time, they may become completely perfect. But even at that stage they will not jump up and arrogantly declare, “Now I am the guru.” They will always think, “I am the servant of my spiritual master.” And that will be the avenue through which this movement will factually spread. Not by upstarts claiming, “I am the guru; you need me. You need me. Without me you cannot….” This is such arrogance! Like immigration officers. No. That’s not spiritual.

Do you follow? It’s transcendental. It’s not mundane. We actually don’t need anyone. Otherwise, why did Prabhupada write these books? He said, “The temples may fail, the devotees may fail, but my books will live forever.” Why did he write these books, if I need this arrogant, possessive, impudent person who is claiming, ‘Without me you cannot get the blessing or the mercy of Prabhupada”? Did Prabhupada say that? Did he ever say that? “Without this person, you cannot….” He never said that. He said certain students, they can be like the monitor, rittvik. They can teach others and give them initiation. That means he has deputized them. He has empowered them. That means they are his disciples. If I give you power of attorney to do some business transaction and you make one million dollars, whose money is that? Whose? Is it your money? No. It’s my money, isn’t it? Because I empowered you to act on my behalf. The power is with me, but I extend it to you in a limited way, and you do something on my behalf. If you make a big profit, the profit is mine. If you think, “‘It’s my profit,” then you become criminal. This is the arrangement Prabhupada made: “I deputize you, I give you the power of attorney, rittvik, that you initiate new students on my behalf.” It’s simple.

But because Prabhupada’s disciples had an ambition to be Prabhupada, to be like him, to take his office, to take his chair, to take his position, to take his title, to take his temples, to take his books and to take his disciples, therefore they took it for granted that “We are gurus”. But Srila Prabhupada never granted them this authority. The government gives a land grant, you can use it, but if you take land for granted which has not been granted to you, you’ll be in trouble. So he never… everyone took it for granted that, “When Prabhupada leaves, we are going to be full gurus.” Why? Because of ambition to be the guru.

That ambition, of course, is the underlying disease of the conditioned soul. He wants to be everything, he wants to be the Supreme, he wants to be the guru, he wants to be Krishna.

So they took it for granted that Srila Prabhupada gave them the go-ahead, but he never did.

BHIMA: The argument is that if you have rittvik gurus now, initiating on Prabhupada’s behalf, that would be like putting Prabhupada like Jesus.

HANSADUTTA: Who says? You say that, but we have to follow the instruction of Srila Prabhupada, not speculate what it means. “Ours is not to reason why; ours is but to do or die.” You speculate, “Oh, this will make Prabhupada like Jesus.” That’s not your business to speculate! Your business is to do or die—not to wonder why. Our business is to do what he instructed to do, not to try to second-guess, “What does this mean?” Which is what is happening—”Well, if we do this, then that…” but that is not our business. Our business is to do what he said to do, and leave the responsibility to him. That’s what it means to be his representative, his servant. He gave this order, you do it— that’s all. Otherwise you become impudent by assuming that you know better—”0h, he’s deficient, so therefore I must adjust his instruction. He said rittvik, but actually full guru is better, because if we do rittvik, he might become like Jesus.” Why would Srila Prabhupada become like Jesus? He’s Srila Prabhupada! This is their speculation. They are simply speculating.

BHIMA: The argument is that if there is not going to be any other guru after Prabhupada, then he’ll be Jesus for the next 10,000 years.

HANSADUTTA: Don’t you worry. Krishna will take care of that. Krishna will provide the guru. Did you invite Srila Prabhupada from India? He came by Krishna’s arrangement. He came and picked us up. So don’t worry. Krishna will arrange for the guru. We don’t need you. Now you want to be Krishna also and insure that everyone has…. This is impudence, jumping over. These arguments are symptomatic of the disease. “Oh, there will be no more guru, so we’d better be guru. Don’t worry, Krishna can handle it.

I’ve studied it very well, all this, because I was in that ambition. I underwent the whole course of illegitimately trying to pose as the guru, and the conclusion is: Srila Prabhupada is the guru, and we are his servants—that’s all. And if we act in that capacity, we are perfect. That is our perfection. Our perfection is to follow his order without ambition, without attempting to be more or to second-guess him. Srila Prabhupada knew what he was doing. He did the right thing.

We impudently manufactured this idea of guru and took it for granted that when Prabhupada passed away, the rittvik automatically became a guru. Why? If you are working in a business and the boss dies, it doesn’t mean that you automatically become the boss. Nothing is automatic. Everything in spiritual life is by instruction. Tad viddhi pranipatena pariprashnena sevaya: “Inquire from him submissively, render him all kinds of service. The self-realised soul can impart knowledge unto you, because he has seen the truth.” So he did impart. He wrote the letter of July 9, 1977: “These men will act as rittvik representatives of the Acharya.”

He never said, “And after I die, after I pass away, after I leave this mortal world, they will be full gurus.” He never said that. We said that. But he never said it. He could have said it. Don’t you think he thought of it? Such an important, big, world-wide movement, and everyone is thinking about this, but he never mentioned it! Why didn’t he mention it? Did he forget it? He made such an elaborate arrangement for his wife and his children’s maintenance after his death. He wrote a long will to make sure that they were provided for. But he forgot to tell his disciples what to do after his disappearance? He neglected, he left it to them to decide to impudently jump up and usurp his position, his name, his books, his temples, his disciples and his whole movement? Is that the conclusion we should take? Will any intelligent man conclude this? No. But that’s what happened, that’s what is happening.

It’s better late than never. Although I was also one of those jumping-up, arrogant disciples, I have learned better through the fire of ordeal and humiliation. I have realized that this is the greatest offense and has caused the greatest damage to Srila Prabhupada’s movement. And I must say it in plain English. It doesn’t matter whether we shall be alone. We must stand on the truth, not on falsehood because it maybe materially more palatable or pleasing or because the foolish disciples are flattering us and inducing us to say, “Yes, I am a guru, you need me, full guru.” They are just flattering us. They want a cut-rate guru, discount guru. They don’t want to submit to the genuine acharya-guru, Srila Prabhupada, who is uncompromising. If you want to be a disciple, if you want to be Krishna conscious, here are the requirements. People want a shortcut. They want to flatter some foolish, ambitious disciple who will let them do anything and not oblige them to perform the austerity; the penance, the sacrifices necessary to make progress in spiritual life. In a nutshell, this is what is happening.

BHIMA: The perfect disciple… he always thinks himself a servant and that serving, that representing his guru, he becomes guru. He’s indebted—

HANSADUTTA: Yes. But when he comes to the platform when he is fully conscious of his relationship with his spiritual master and Krishna, and there is no question of being influenced by Maya under any circumstance, at that time he is a full guru.

But even at that time he will not campaign to have his position ratified by foolish and neophyte, envious, flattering disciples. He will remain humble, more so even than when he has been designated rittvik—”Okay, we give you some power of attorney to initiate for the acharya.” In the rittvik designation, it is understood that he is imperfect. He may be influenced by Maya, but he is sincere, he is endeavoring to make progress, and he will act dutifully on behalf of the acharya, spiritual master.

This is the significance of the whole arrangement and situation. We don’t find Lord Chaitanya jumping up, saying, “I am the guru! I am Krishna!” We never see. And we always saw in Srila Prabhupada’s time, “I’m doing and just repeating what I heard from my spiritual master. On behalf of my spiritual master, I am doing.” When he was offered the vyasasana, he refused it. He said, “But on behalf of my spiritual master I can accept it.” When the guru-puja was first offered, he refused it three times. He said, “No, not for me.” Finally, he said, “I can accept it only on behalf of my Guru Maharaja.” This is the proper mood and relationship.

In material life there is campaigning, there is politics, ambition. There is a striving, a hankering for, to take the post, the high post and to exhibit one’s pride. That is desirable in material life. But in spiritual life that is not desirable. In spiritual life, that is seen as a symptom of the disease.

Here it says, right here [reading from Srila Prabhupada’s purport to the text in Srimad-Bhagavatam]: “Brahmaji does not want to become a speculator, dependent on the strength of his personal knowledge and conditioned to material bondage. Everyone should know in clear consciousness that one is in the execution of all activities an instrument.” So Prabhupada said, “All right, you act as rittvik, instrument.” Why rittvik? To qualify your responsibility, that you are deputized by him to act and initiate on his behalf. And when we are completely convinced and realize, “Whatever I am doing, I am doing on behalf of my guru,” we become full guru. Not that “I’m a full guru, and those whom I’m initiating, they’re my disciples.” This is impudence, arrogance. Possessiveness is a symptom of the disease. If he has actually come to the full stage, the mature stage of realization, he would not make such a declaration.

The disciple may say, “Oh, he’s my guru.” Just like children—”He’s my father.” But the father knows, “I am also the child of my father. ” And dutifully he takes care of his children. He doesn’t lord it over them, he doesn’t exploit them. The son thinks, “He’s my father,” but the father also has his father.

More Evidence for Rittvik Representation of the Acharya Srila Prabhupada

Also published in Every Town & Village, Vol 8, No 1 (1993):

SP speaks out
Click on the image to view the article which was originally published in the magazine Back To Godhead, Vol. 24 No. 10, published in 1989.

Here is clear evidence which supports Srila Prabhupada’s instruction that eleven of his disciples should have acted as rittvik representatives of the Acharya (nothing more and nothing less) and shatters to pieces the false doctrine that we need a “living guru”.

In “The Function of the Soul”, Srila Prabhupada says,

“When you read the Bible, you are following the spiritual master. How can you say ‘without a spiritual master’? As soon as you read the Bible, that means you are following the instruction of Lord Jesus Christ. That means you are following the spiritual master. So where is the opportunity of being without the spiritual master?”

Now, everyone knows that Lord Jesus Christ died on the cross almost 2,000 years ago. He is not physically present. He is not a “living guru”, but Srila Prabhupada finds no difficulty with the question of “living” or “dead”. A disciple says, “I was referring to a living spiritual master.” Srila Prabhupada replies, “There is no question of whether the spiritual master is ‘living’. The spiritual master is eternal.”

Then Srila Prabhupada goes on to say,

“When you say ‘reading the Bible’, that means you are following the spiritual master [Jesus Christ], represented by some priest or some clergyman in the line of Lord Jesus Christ.”

Here is support for the rittvik representation from Srila Prabhupada himself!! The priest or clergyman is acting as an agent or rittvik on behalf of the spiritual master Jesus Christ.

Later in the conversation, a disciple asks whether the priest is receiving good interpretation of the Bible in his disciplic succession from Jesus Christ, and Srila Prabhupada replies,

“…When someone makes some misrepresentation, he’s not a bona fide spiritual master. Reject such a spiritual master immediately. …There is no question of interpretation. Then the authority is gone. As soon as you interpret, there is no authority.”

But Srila Prabhupada’s own final written instructions to his disciples (his letter of July 9th, 1977) have been ignored, neglected, misinterpreted and disobeyed by the GBC guru acharyas, who have set themselves up as the ultimate authority of Srila Prabhupada’s mission. How should devotees view this?

Srila Prabhupada does not stand for compromise:

“…When is interpretation required? When a thing is not understood. If I say, ‘This is a watch,’ and everyone understands that ‘This is a watch, yes,’ then where is the opportunity of interpreting that ‘This is a spectacle’? So unnecessary interpretation is not required, and that is not bona fide. And those who are interpreting unnecessarily – they should be rejected immediately. Immediately, without any consideration.”

The original eleven disciples named to act as Srila Prabhupada’s rittvik representatives, or deputies of the Acharya, have failed to carry out the order of Srila Prabhupada, and either they must rectify their mistake and submit to Srila Prabhupada’s instruction (better late than never), or their leadership will be rejected by truthful devotees.

“So better remain a foolish person perpetually to be directed by Guru Maharaja” – Srila Prabhupada

Srila Prabhupada, August 16,1976, Bombay – Conversations with Srila Prabhupada, Vol. 26, p. 59-60

As published in “Srila Prabhupada, His Movement and You” by Hansadutta das, this offer is still good today (March 18, 2009). Bring proof and collect your money. Click to enlarge

If one remains always a servant everlastingly of guru, then he is liberated. And as soon as he thinks that he is liberated, he’s a rascal. That is the teaching of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu…. You must be ready always to be chastised by guru. Then he’s liberated. And as soon as he thinks that “I am beyond this chastisement, I am liberated,” he’s a rascal…. Why this Gaudiya Math failed? Because they tried to become more than guru. He [Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura, Srila Prabhupada’s spiritual master and founder of the Gaudiya Math], before passing away, he gave them all direction and never said that “This man should be the next acharya.” But these people, just after his passing away, they began to fight, who shall be acharya. That is the failure. They never thought, “Why Guru Maharaja gave us instruction so many things, why he did not say that this man should be acharya?” They wanted to create artificially somebody acharya, and everything failed. They did not consider even with common sense that if Guru Maharaja wanted to appoint somebody as acharya, why did he not say? He said so many things, and this point he missed? The real point? And they insist upon it. They declared some unfit person to become acharya. Then another man came, then another, acharya, another acharya. So better remain a foolish person perpetually to be directed by Guru Maharaja. That is perfection. And as soon as he learns the Guru Maharaja is dead, “Now I am so advanced that I can kill my guru and I become guru.”

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