Monday, May 4, 2015

Srila Prabhupada's Guru Order

ISKCON IRM: Back To Prabhupada, Issue 45, Autumn 2014

Srila Prabhupada has repeatedly asked all his disciples to "become guru". The GBC, not surprisingly, has taken this order to refer to diksa guru, thus allowing them to fulfil their desires to declare themselves diksa guru successors to Srila Prabhupada, with most of the GBC members occupying such a position in ISKCON. In a room conversation on 30/5/76, Srila Prabhu-pada specifically explains what the order for everyone in ISKCON to "become guru" actually means. All quotes in the shaded boxes are taken from this morning walk, with all underlining added.
Become guru
Srila Prabhupada begins by explaining that he wants all his disciples to become guru, and that he is training everyone to take up such a role even after he departs:
"But after all, every one of you should become guru. [...] I am training you all to become guru in the future. Now the Krsna consciousness movement, the properties and everything, I will not take with me. They will remain where they are."
Lord Caitanya's order
Srila Prabhupada explains however, that to become guru requires that one is first ordered to do so, otherwise becoming guru will be artificial:
"Guru is accepted by etiquette, not by artificial attempt. Amara ajnaya guru hana [Cc. Madhya 7.128]: "Follow My order and become guru." Not that you become guru. amara ajnaya guru hana tara' ei desa yare dekha, tare kaha 'krsna'-upadesa" [Cc. Madhya 7.128] Hmm? You have to follow the parampara system, order. That is guru. Not that I declare myself as guru. No. That is not guru. [...] The Caitanya-caritamrta statement, amara: one can become guru by the superior order."
And to establish the point that one must actually be ordered by one's superior in order to become guru, Srila Prabhupada repeats Lord Caitanya's order to "become guru" in the Caitanya-caritamrta.
Thus, in summary, Srila Prabhupada has so far spoken of wanting all his disciples to become guru, even after he departs, but makes it clear, by quoting Lord Caitanya's order to "become guru", that they should first be ordered to do so.
The question that then rem-ains, is what type of guru does Srila Prabhupada actually order his disciples to become? As the conversation proceeds, Srila Prabhupada is directly asked this question, and Srila Prabhupada gives a direct answer, as the next section will show.
Only siksa guru order
Gopala Krsna: "Srila Prabhupada, I am just trying to clarify -- I don't want to offend anyone -- but no disciple of yours should call himself diksa-guru or siksa-guru. Am I right?"
Prabhupada: "Well, everyone is engaged to become siksa-guru, but one should become perfect. The attempt is -- what is called? -- probationer. When probationer period is finished, then he is naturally, automatically, bona fide guru. Not in the probationer period. That is immature attempt. That will failure. Amara ajnaya [Cc. Madhya 7.128], Caitanya Mahaprabhu said: "By My order." So all my disciples are expected to become siksa-guru on my order, not by his own order. That is meaning I am giving sannyasa, I am sending you to different places, so this means that you have to carry out the order of the guru very strictly; then you become mature. Otherwise it will be artificial attempt, and that kind of guru will not help."
Having heard Srila Prabhupada's warning that no one should attempt to become guru without first being ordered to do so, Gopal Krishna concludes that no disciple should ever become either siksa or diksa guru, and seeks confirmation from Srila Prabhupada for this conclusion. Srila Prabhupada clarifies in response only that all his disciples are authorised to act as siksa guru. He then again quotes Lord Caitanya's instruction that one must first be ordered to become guru, and states that this means that all his disciples are ordered to become siksa guru, due to having received an order to do so from Srila Prabhupada.
This explanation from Srila Prabhupada means that:

1) Srila Prabhupada has applied Lord Caitanya's instruction that one should become guru on the basis of an order, by ordering his disciples to become siksa guru.
2) If Srila Prabhupada had wanted his disciples to act as diksa gurus, he would also have needed to give such an order. But Srila Prabhupada never gave such a corresponding diksa guru order.
Qualified siksa gurus
In the quotation provided in the last section, Srila Prabhupada also explains that all those who are acting as siksa gurus are doing so in the "probationer period", and he wants that they finish this siksa guru probationer period by becoming perfect bona fide siksa gurus. Indeed, he states that even the sannyasis, who are supposed to be the most advanced members of the Society, are similarly meant to "mature" from this probationer siksa guru period, and become perfect siksa gurus.
This defeats the common false argument used against the IRM that keeping Srila Prabhupada as ISKCON's diksa guru means that he did not create, or could not create, any qualified gurus. For the reality is that Srila Prabhupada simply wanted such perfect bona fide gurus to continue acting as siksa gurus under ISKCON's diksa guru, Srila Prabhupada. For, as we have just seen, Srila Prabhupada only ordered siksa gurus, not diksa gurus. 


Srila Prabhupada has given various orders, wherein he mentions:
1) Lord Caitanya's order to "become guru" from Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya 7:128, when ordering his disciples to become guru. 2) That his disciples should in the future go on to become bona fide gurus. 3) That he wants all his disciples to become qualified to take up the role of guru.
The GBC has falsely been relying on claiming that such orders refer to diksa gurus as the authority for their diksa guru successor program. For example, in their paper, Prabhupada's Order, they quote dozens of such orders as supposed evidence that Srila Prabhupada ordered diksa guru successors. Indeed, as we detailed in BTP 27 and BTP 39, the BBT has even changed a purport for Lord Caitanya's order to "become guru" in the Caitanya-caritamrta, in the hope that it can still be put forward as supposed evidence for an order to become diksa guru.
However, all such orders are herein directly clarified by Srila Prabhupada to only be orders for all his disciples to become siksa gurus, and therefore, the GBC's successor guru hoax program is defeated.

Follow Me on Pinterest
Twitter Delicious Facebook Digg Stumbleupon Favorites More