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Article by Upendranath Dasa 

“REACH IN ENGLISH”: Base on Srila Prabhupada’s Lecture on Srila Bhakti-siddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada’s Appearance Day, Los Angeles February 7, 1969

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Segment 5

Srila Prabhupada Did Not Try to Fix the Gaudiya-math; After the Leader, Asked Him to Leave the Allahabad Temple That he Established.

Srila Bhakti-siddhanta Sarasvati gave the instruction to Srila Prabhupada to go and Preach in the English language.  Srila Prabhupada was aware of the many problems in his guru’s Gaudiya-math.  At one point the GBC of the Gaudiya-math wrote a letter to him, suggesting that what he was trying to do in Allahabad, was basically not on the agenda of the GBC, and therefore, it would be best for Srila Prabhupada to go out on his own. 

And it was our good fortune that he did. 

Srila Prabhupada did not try to preach in a way, that would try to “fix” the Gaudiya-math.  And why? You may ask?  Prabhupada, in his preaching, explains that it was because of “Personal Ambition”, what he called “factions”.

In Purport to Caitanya-caritamrta Adi-lila 12.8, Srila Prabhupada wrote:

“Srimad Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada, all the disciples worked in agreement; but just after his disappearance, they disagreed. One party strictly followed the instructions of Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura, but another group created their own concoction about executing his desires.

Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura, at the time of his departure, requested all his disciples to form a governing body and conduct missionary activities cooperatively. He did not instruct a particular man to become the next acarya. But just after his passing away, his leading secretaries made plans, without authority, to occupy the post of acarya, and they split into two factions over who the next acarya would be. Consequently, both factions were asara, or useless, because they had no authority, having disobeyed the order of the spiritual master. Despite the spiritual master’s order to form a governing body and execute the missionary activities of the Gaudiya Matha, the two unauthorized factions began litigation that is still going on after forty years with no decision.

Therefore, we do not belong to any faction. But because the two parties, busy dividing the material assets of the Gaudiya Matha institution, stopped the preaching work, we took up the mission of Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura and Bhaktivinoda Thakura to preach the cult of Caitanya Mahaprabhu all over the world, under the protection of all the predecessor acaryas, and we find that our humble attempt has been successful. We followed the principles especially explained by Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura in his commentary on the Bhagavad-gita verse beginning vyavasayatmika buddhir ekeha kuru-nandana [Bg. 2.41]. According to this instruction of Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura, it is the duty of a disciple to follow strictly the orders of his spiritual master. The secret of success in advancement in spiritual life is the firm faith of the disciple in the orders of his spiritual master. The Vedas confirm this:

[SU 6.23]

‘To one who has staunch faith in the words of the spiritual master and the words of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the secret of success in Vedic knowledge is revealed.’” 


That is a big problem, when you have to deal with human phycology traits, and habits of devotees, that have the cancer of “Personal Ambition”. Add to that mix, the “power” and the “assets” they control, makes the following aphorism true:

“It is easier to change the course of a battleship with a wooden canoe paddle, than to change the course of any institution that has ‘personal ambition’ running rampant and viral.”

Is it possible to understand the mood, that these Superlative Personalities Preached.  It is not hard to understand, that Srila Bhaktisiddanta Saraswati, preaching style, his mood, disposition, attitude, and temperament, influenced Srila Prabhupada’s preaching style.  Is there evidence, that their ‘styles’ were the same?

We should go the Gaudiya Vaisnava’s most cherished Sastra, the Srimad-Bhagavatam, the cream of all Vedic Literature.

In Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.1.2 we will find,

  • The work,
  • The kind of preaching Vaisnavas do,
  • And for the benefit of whom,
  • And the purpose why.

Yes, in 2 short sentences, the second verse of Srimad-Bhagavatam says:

“… The highest truth is reality distinguished from illusion for the welfare of all.  Such truth uproots the threefold miseries. …”

Gaudiya Vaisnavas preach, the highest truth, by distinguishing reality of something, in contrast to the illusion of that thing.

Moreover, they preach, in this manner, for the welfare of all.

And ever more important, they preach, like this, because they know ‘such truth uproots the threefold miseries of:

(1) those miseries which arise from the mind and body,

(2) those miseries inflicted by other living beings, 

(3) those miseries arising from natural catastrophes over which one has no control.

The only way any jiva can uproot the threefold miseries, is that once having obtained the human form of life, the jiva must perfect its life, by obtaining the goal of life, which is “Pure Bhakti”, Pure Loving Devotional Service to Lord Krishna; and that translates to “Chanting the Holy Name of Krishna Purely”, without the 10 offences.  This guarantees, that the jiva will not take birth again in this material world, where everyone, who does, is subject to the threefold miseries again. 

If the jiva perfects its life, it will in its next life, take birth, if you will; in an eternal Spiritual physical and subtle bodies, in the Eternal Abode of Krishna, where there is no such thing as the threefold miseries.

If the jiva does not perfect its life, it will simply take birth again in the Material World, and be subjugated to the three-fold-miseries.

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