History of the GBC’s climbdown

As all our articles in this section, the one below has also been first published in the IRM's official magazine Back To Prabhupada. BTP is being distributed for free to ISKCON devotees and people interested in Srila Prabhupada's teachings worldwide. If you would like to receive BTP at your home, simply send us your full name and street address via the following email address: irm@iskconirm. com.

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History of the GBC’s climbdown

Following the vigorous preaching of the IRM, the GBC have continually been forced to modify their position so it comes closer and closer to that preached by the IRM. We here document this chronology:

1977– Ritviks selected

On July 9th, 1977, Srila Prabhupada selects 11 ritviks to continue initiation ceremonies in ISKCON, so that the standard system of initiation present in ISKCON since
its founding, with Srila Prabhupada becoming the diksa Guru of anyone who joins ISKCON on a temple president’s recommendation, is able to continue without the need for Srila Prabhupada’s involvement.

1978 – Ritviks falsely claimed to be gurus

However, immediately after Srila Prabhupada’s departure, these 11 ritvik appointments are suddenly claimed to be that of successor diksa gurus: “…for 1978, no new Spiritual Masters shall be appointed other than the 11 selected by Srila Prabhupada.” (GBC Resolution No. 16, 19/3/1978).

1986 – False diksa guru system authorises others

The then current false guru system, based on 11 ritviks masquerading as diksa gurus, is expanded with any other Prabhupada disciple allowed to join their numbers providing he gets the necessary votes from the GBC (GBC Resolution No. 3, March 30th, 1986). This is later justified on the basis of the “law of disciplic succession”, which states that it is possible for disciples to become gurus only if their spiritual master has first departed.

1996 – The Final Order (TFO) published

The GBC ask the BTP editor to present the evidence challenging their position. (BTP was first published by the same editor in 1995).

2001 – “Law of disciplic succession” ditched

In a stunning about-turn, the GBC do a 180-degree reversal and now allow even disciples of ISKCON gurus to become gurus in their guru’s physical presence, thus contradicting the “law of disciplic succession”. It is first called an “exception” (GBC resolution, 2001), but in later years it becomes accepted as a standard as more and more grand-disciples become diksa gurus without their own spiritual master having first departed.

2003 – Ritvik ---> Diksa guru authorisation ditched

GBC accepts that Srila Prabhupada never ordered the 11 ritviks to become diksa gurus, that it can only be assumed that this was what Srila Prabhupada “implicitly intended”. Claims that there was an “order” for the ritviks to become diksa gurus is simply “bull” and “playing games with the truth”. (E-mail from HH Jayadvaita Swami to the GBC, December 13th, 2003).

2004 – Diksa guru position paper ditched

The admission stated above leads to the GBC abandoning their official position paper, On My Order Understood (1995), the very paper that The Final Order had challenged. Instead, they no longer offer any explanation or paper, but only a statement claiming that Srila Prabhupada “intended” his disciples to become diksa gurus. (GBC resolution, 409, 2004)

2004 – No order, no intention, only “encouragement”

In Srila Prabhupada’s books printed by the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust (BBT), an extra section has been added entitled “Krsna Consciousness at Home”. In this section, since 2004, it has stated:
“Before he left this world in 1977, Srila Prabhupada encouraged his qualified disciples to carry on his work by initiating disciples of their own in accordance with his instructions.”

So having first claimed there was an order in 1977 for diksa gurus, and then only that Srila Prabhupada “intended” this, now it has been downgraded to only that this was “encouraged”.

2008 – Diksa gurus now claiming they are ritviks !

The hoax has now been forced to come full circle, with ISKCON diksa gurus openly admitting they are actually only ritviks, either directly as stated by persons such as HH Hanumatpresaka Swami, or indirectly by many others, who accept that they are only bringing us to the real Guru, Srila Prabhupada, who takes us to Krishna. This leads to The Great Guru Hoax, Part 3, whereby the ISKCON gurus are now forced to admit they are only glorified ritviks masquerading as full diksa gurus (please see BTP Special Issue 2, with over 100 statements about this!).

2009 - onwards: Final step

Having helped bring the situation this far, the IRM is now pushing for the final step, whereby the hapless disciples accept the guru hoaxers as being only the glorified ritviks they claim they are and instead accept Srila Prabhupada as their sole eternal spiritual master who will take them back to Godhead. Many disciples have already openly rejected their ISKCON gurus, and joined the IRM in accepting Srila Prabhupada as their diksa Guru.


Conclusion: Events are showing that those who have been supporting The Final Order since its publication in 1996 are on the right side of history, and more importantly on the side of the truth. Join the fight to achieve final victory for Srila Prabhupada by supporting the IRM, the only organisation actively working to combat the guru hoax.

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