Sand in the Sweet Rice
(Along With Virile Drops of Poison)

A Critical Review of the
Çréla Prabhupäda “Lélämåta”

By Bhakta Çré Hari Vijayaräghavan

Edited by Kailäsa Candra däsa

“The words or songs of a person not fixed in Vaiñëava behavior, not strictly following the rules and regulations and chanting the Hare Kåñëa mantra, should not be accepted by pure devotees.”
- Çrémad-Bhägavatam, 6.16.33, purport

The “Lélämåta”, a multi-volume book written by an initiated disciple of the name and title Satsvarüpa däsa Gosvämé (henceforward, SSd), supposedly glorifies his guru, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedänta Swämé Çréla Prabhupäda, in the form of a biography. While the focus of this article is a critical analysis of this Çréla PrabhupädaLélämåta” (henceforward, referred to as simply “Lélämåta”), we must first establish a solid foundation for the review in terms of prerequisite devotional topics. In light of paramparä teachings, it is required to consider just who are bhägavata bhaktas, and then we can better understand their pastimes. There is an etiquette here, and it is demonstrated by Vaiñëava composers of Vedäntic literatures. Under their guidance can this analysis be undertaken and appropriate, accurate conclusions thus drawn.

The Supreme Lord and His pastimes

In the famous verse, Bhagavad-gétä, 4.9, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Çré Kåñëa, instructed His dear devotee, Çré Arjuna, that, when His pastimes (which are all transcendental) are understood in truth, a conditioned soul gets liberation from the material entanglement. Conversely, He condemned those who misunderstand His activities as material to be ignorant fools and rascals (avajänanti mäm müdhä). Naturally, the first-named class of living entities are known as devotees (viñëu-bhaktaù småto daiva), while the latter are demons (äsuras tad-viparyayaù).

Ultimately, all the transcendental narrations of the Lord’s pastimes, as per the revealed scriptures, are meant to spiritually purify (pütäù) and uplift the devotees, while the demons, by deriding Him, rarely are spiritually benefited. Their enviousness of the Supreme Lord and consequent disregard and disrespect (vartate käma-kärataù) for His instructions form their basic outlook in life. Therefore, they perpetually remain impure (na çaucaà) and become ever more bound up by the stringent laws of the material nature.

Conversely, being pleased with the devotional service of His sincere devotees, the Lord eventually gives them required intelligence to understand His pastimes in truth (rahasyaà hy etad uttamam; dadämi buddhi-yogaà tam). Thus, He helps them become liberated. Meanwhile, the non-devotees (such as demons and sahajiyäs) disqualify themselves from receiving such benedictions from Him.

There are innumerable injunctions given by guru, sädhu, and çäçtra for all sincere devotees; one of them is to keep away from the impure association of materialists (asat saìga). Such offenders are bereft of knowing the Lord's glories in truth. Sincere devotees are enjoined to search out the pure association of genuine devotees (sädhu saìga), where the Lord's glories are sung purely. In that way, as per the scientific progression of devotional life given by Çréla Rüpa Gosvämé, rendering various devotional services in such association, a sincere devotee can make genuine progress in his devotional life (bodhayantaù parasparam).

This principle of purification and liberation by understanding the pastimes of the Supreme Person also applies to the pastimes of a Bhagavän-realized devotee, known as person bhägavata in the highest sense of the term.

All Vedäntic literature glorifies the Supreme Lord and devotional service unto Him. Most of it is accompanied by the authorized commentaries of various äcäryas of the Bhägavata school. This propagation in human society is meant to spiritually uplift the sincere devotees. Such Vedäntic literature leaves no scope for interpretation or misunderstanding of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and His glorious pastimes, which are inseparable from Him. That is indeed the standard of the Bhägavata school. Of course, materialists like demons and sahajiyäs disregard this injunction. As such, they remain helplessly bound up (uru-dämni baddhäù).

The Person Bhägavata and His Pastimes

“The person Bhägavatam is one whose very life is Çrémad-Bhägavatam in practice.”
- Çrémad-Bhägavatam, Introduction.

“So, Bhägavata can be expanded to any unlimited. . . anything in relationship with God, that is Bhägavatam.”
- Platform lecture, 11-18-68, in Los Angeles.

Just as the pastimes of the Supreme Lord are transcendental, the pastimes of a Bhagavän-realized devotee (i.e., person bhägavata in the highest sense of the term) are also transcendental. He sets a perfect example by leading his devotional life in accordance with Lord's instructions as per the Book Bhägavata. Just as the Lord’s pastimes are always mysterious, the pastimes of His pure devotee are also sometimes mysterious. It especially is so for the neophyte devotee, who has not yet developed discriminating intelligence (na tad-bhakteñu cänyeñu). The kaniñöha-bhakta does not possess a clear understanding of the devotional principles. In order to be delivered from his misunderstandings, the neophyte devotee needs proper guidance. This is especially the case in relation to understanding the pastimes of a Bhagavän-realized devotee such as Çréla Prabhupäda.

On the other hand, misunderstanding the position of the person bhägavata—thinking his activities to be that of a gifted but ultimately ordinary human being subjected to material laws—degrades, in due course of time, the spiritual life of such an unfortunate neophyte. This is primarily due to the slippery slope known as offense at the lotus feet of a pure devotee. Therefore, proper understanding of the pastimes of a person bhägavata is essential, as it provides spiritual upliftment for the conditioned souls.

There are many injunctions governing how to properly honor a pure devotee, for he perfectly represents the Lord and is worthy of all honor and respect befitting the Lord Himself (sääd-dharitvena). All of these things ought to be properly learnt if one wishes to remain enthusiastic (utsähän) about his spiritual progress. In that regard, disrespecting the äcärya has been clearly forbidden by guru, sädhu and çäçtra:

Çrémad-Bhägavatam (11.17.27) advises, äcäryaà mäà vijänéyän nävamanyeta karhicit/ na martya-buddhyäsüyeta: The äcärya should always be offered respectful obeisances. One should never envy the äcärya, considering him an ordinary human being.”
- Çrémad-Bhägavatam, 6.7.21, purport (emphasis added).

äcäryavän puruso veda (Chändogya Upanisad 6.14.2): One has full knowledge about life when one is äcäryavän, controlled by the äcärya. . . when one is conducted by rajo-guëa and tamo-guëa, one does not care about anything.”
- Çrémad-Bhägavatam, 10.10.10, purport (emphasis added).

The Vedäntic scriptures held in the highest esteem by the Bhägavata school--like Bhagavad-gétä, Çrémad-Bhägavatam and Çré Caitanya-caritämåta, etc.--reveal the transcendental pastimes of the Lord and many of His great devotees (bhägavatas); they are also highly philosophical for the spiritual upliftment of sincere devotees. Bhagavad-gétä reveals how Arjuna was uplifted to the highest perfectional stage by following Lord Çré Kåñëa's instructions on the battlefield of Kurukñetra (’tha sakhye ’rjunaù). Similarly, Çrémad-Bhägavatam reveals the pastimes of Parékñit Mahäräja (çré-viñëu​-çravaëe parékñit), Çukadeva Gosvämé (abhavad vaiyäsakiù kértane), and Prahläda Mahäräja (prahlädaù smaraëe).

Most recently, just a little over five hundred years ago, Çré Caitanya-caritämåita revealed the teachings and dealings of Lord Çré Caitanya Mahäprabhu with great personalities of that time, such as Çré Prakäçänanda Sarasvaté, Çré Särvabhauma Bhattäcärya, Çréla Sanätana Gosvämé, Çréla Rüpa Gosvämé, and Çré Rämänanda Räya. These are further examples. In such transcendental literatures, the activities of the Lord and His pure devotees are presented in the light of the teachings of the Bhägavata school, so that the conditioned souls will be inspired to follow them (sädhu-märgänugamanam), rendering devotional service for their own perfection.

These exemplary transcendental narratives, revealing the pastimes of the Lord and His devotees, are narrated in a highly philosophical way. That allows them to impress upon every intelligent, sincere, and serious devotee that there is an eternal life of unmotivated and uninterrupted devotion to the Supreme Lord (bhaktir adhokñaje ahaituky apratihatä). That eternal life is the ultimate goal and the original constitutional position of every living entity (kåñëera ‘nitya-däsa’). Therefore, everyone is encouraged to return to that original position by humbly following in the footsteps chalked out by predecessor äcäryas or mahäjanas, who are authorized to provide the required spiritual guidance.

Etiquette for Composing Vaiñëava Literature

“Saïjaya was a student of Vyäsa, and therefore, by the mercy of Vyäsa, Saïjaya was able to envision the Battlefield of Kurukñetra even while he was in the room of Dhåtarästra.”
- Bhagavad-gétä, 1.1, purport (emphasis added)

“Çréla Kåñëadäsa Kaviräja Gosvämé took permission not only from the Vaiñëavas and Madana-mohana but also from Våndävana däsa Öhäkura, who is understood to be the Vyäsa of the pastimes of Çré Caitanya Mahäprabhu.”
- Caitanya-caritämåta, Ädi, 8.81, purport (emphasis added)

It has been clearly revealed that every one of the exalted composers of transcendental literature (by sincerely endeavoring to recount transcendental narratives) is already a perfected personality. Because the Supreme Lord is pleased by the genuine endeavor to properly glorify Him, consequently that great writer or commentator, as a part and parcel of the Lord, also feels transcendentally satisfied:

“Everyone should engage himself in that transcendental loving service of the Lord, even in the present conditional state of material existence. That will gradually give one the clue to actual life and please him to complete satisfaction.”
- Çrémad-Bhägavatam, 1.2.6, purport (emphasis added).

“Certainly, therefore, since time immemorial, all transcendentalists have been rendering devotional service to Lord Kåñëa, the Personality of Godhead, with great delight, because such devotional service is enlivening to the self.”
- Çrémad-Bhägavatam, 1.2.22, translation (emphasis added).

Saïjaya, the secretary of King Dhåtarästra, recounted the narration of Bhagavad-gétä by the blessings of his spiritual master, Sage Vyäsa. As an another example, Sage Vyäsa, who apparently remained dissatisfied even after his tremendous contribution of composing Vedic literatures for the welfare of the world, was thoroughly satisfied only after composing Çrémad-Bhägavatam, as per the instructions of his guru, Çréla Närada Muni.

Similarly, Kåñëadäsa Kaviräja Gosvämé composed Çré Caitanya-caritämåta by the blessings of the ñaò-gosvämés of Våndävana, Çré Nityänanda Prabhu, and Çré Madana-mohana Deity of Våndävana. Later on, Çré Baladeva Vidyäbhüñaëa, to whom Çréla Prabhupäda had dedicated his Bhagavad-gétä As It Is, composed the glorious Govinda-bhäñya (the authorized Gauòéya Vaiñëava commentary on Vedänta-sutra) by the blessings of Çréla Viçvanätha Cakravarté Öhäkura and Çré Govinda Deity of Jaipur.

His Divine Grace Çréla Prabhupäda, strictly following the above etiquette in the disciplic succession, many times instructed his followers (in his books, conversations, lectures, and letters) that his spiritual master, Çréla Bhaktisiddhänta Sarasvaté Öhäkura, instructed him to publish transcendental literatures that he (Çréla Prabhupäda) translated in order to have them distributed all over the world:

“This was the subject matter of my Guru Maharaja's satisfaction. So, by His (sic) mercy, we are printing books and constructing temples, as well.”
- Letter to Karandhära, 9-27-73 (emphasis added).

Although all of these exalted personalities or spiritual authorities are qualified to render commentaries on transcendental literature (as these composers have shown by their personal examples), those commentaries are composed only with the authorization and blessings of the predecessor äcäryas, the higher authorities. Therefore, these contributions (mahat-seväà) not only spiritually purify and enliven (ätma-prasädaném) the respective composers (who are all perfected already), but, when properly heard and chanted, everyone—the inquirer, the preacher, and the listeners, and the readers--also gets purified and spiritually uplifted. In this way, all devotees are satisfied on the transcendental plane, and endeavors in God-realization become ever-fresh and sublime. In that connection, every sincere, genuine, and humble follower of Çréla A.C. Bhaktivedänta Swämé Prabhupäda needs to adhere to his spotless bhakti-vedänta teachings and tradition, as per the potent instructions contained in his books.

Sand in the Sweet Rice

The “Lélämåta” is supposedly an authoritative biography of His Divine Grace Çréla Prabhupäda, since it was rubber-stamped to be so by the vitiated (asära) G.B.C, the controlling node of “ISKCON,” under its publishing wing B.B.T. (now the warped “BBT(I)”). Your author has personally come across many fanatics and sentimentalists who hold this “Lélämåta” in the highest esteem, viz., they consider it to be in the category of Book Bhägavata. However, in this short article, in light of the paramparä teachings (as per the previous sections), the book’s claim to be authoritative will be debunked. Just as the chemical composition of the entire ocean can be qualitatively analyzed from a sample drop or just like the entire pot of cooked rice can be judged by picking out just one grain, a few samples from “Lélämåta” can be analyzed to understand how unauthorized the book really is.

"He went on with his duties but remained shaken by the dream.”
Lélämåta” Volume 1, Chapter 3, page 59 (emphasis added).

"Although Prabhupäda's home had suddenly become an insane terror, the street at its door was also a hellish, dangerous place. He was shaken.”
Lélämåta” Volume 2, Chapter 6, page 95 (emphasis added).

Shaken, insanity, terror, hell, and danger: All these words describe the pitiable suffering state of a conditioned soul, who is forced to undergo such effects under the stringent laws of the material world due to past vikarmic or sinful activities. None of these words is suitable at all for describing the position or state of being of a Bhagavän-realized devotee, Çréla Prabhupäda. He was always transcendental to the stringent laws of the material world. The liberated (liberated from what?) devotee of the Lord is not at all subjected to such conditions and calamities.

A Bhagavän-realized devotee is never shaken under any circumstances. As confirmed in Bhagavad-gétä 6.23, even at Paramätmä realization (Lord Viñëu in the heart--viñëuù sarva-guhä-çayaù), a yogé is never shaken. Then, how can a prema-bhakta Äcärya like Çréla Prabhupäda be shaken? He was and remains Bhagavän realized (Bhagavän is the ultimate realization of the Absolute Truth – brahmeti paramätmeti bhagavän iti).

In retrospect, as history has shown, it is the author of “Lélämåta” and his other pretender (mithyäcäraù) mahä-bhägavata-zonal-äcärya-godbrother cohorts who suffered. They say Prabhupäda suffered like them, but that is a false claim, i.e., they are projecting their own sufferings onto the Supreme Personality of Servitor Godhead.

If the argument is made that Çréla Prabhupäda himself, in some private conversation, said these kinds of things, that should be understood to be an example of fully-realized humility, the emblem of all person bhägavatas. It is just as Çréla Bhaktivinode Öhakura claimed he found no good qualities in himself (jogyatä-vicäre, kichu nähi päi) or Çréla Narottama däsa Öhäkur prayed that there is no one more fallen than himself (mo sama patita prabhu nä päibe ära). All these exalted personalities, including our Çréla Prabhupäda, when they speak of themselves in such a self-denigrating manner, it is to be understood as a symptom of genuine Vaiñëava humility.

No one should blow it out of proportion by writing to the public about it—thinking that it is acceptable to do so because the book has been given a blind stamp of approval by some kind of commission. When similar remarks are found in the works of the pure devotees themselves, they are edifying and can be properly understood. However, when presented in the wrong way to the wrong audience, without the necessary qualification and realization as per the Bhägavata teachings, the readers will be mostly misled, as is the case with many or most people who have read this “Lélämåta.”

"This is what it meant to be working without government sponsorship, without the support of any religious organization, without a patron. It meant feeling vulnerable and insecure."
Lélämåta” Volume 2, Chapter 6, page 96 (emphasis added).

In this offensive quote, the author claims Çréla Prabhupäda felt vulnerable and insecure for being under what the author considers were unfavorable conditions, viz., without governmental sponsorship, without “religious” organization, without patrons, etc. A pure devotee of the Lord is never vulnerable or insecure. He is solely dependent on the Lord and not on any of the arrangements of this world:

“No, we have no attachment. We can sit down, in this nice building, we can sit down anywhere. We are not attached to this building; we are attached to push on Kåñëa consciousness. That is our business. And, unconditionally, we can push on Kåñëa consciousness. Ahaituky apratihatä. . . Just like I began this movement underneath a tree in New York, Tompkins Square...”
- Conversation, 8-10-76, Tehran (emphasis added).

Çréla Prabhupäda started his movement without any of the prerequisites mentioned by SSd, and his effort can be compared to the transcendentally glorious preaching of Çukadeva Gosvämé to Mahäräja Parékñit or Süta Gosvämé preaching to the åñis, headed by Çaunaka. This is Bhägavata tradition. Even when opulent facilities are provided, these Äcäryas expertly engage themselves in the Lord's service.

Considering how SSd and his cohorts had the support of the religious organization (i.e., “ISKCON,” with its asära G.B.C.) and of many wealthy patrons, they may have, at that time, felt very safe and secure! With the hindsight of history, realizing now how the movement was quickly run into the ground after the disappearance of Çréla Prabhupäda, we see the real “value” of all of that organization and patronage.

"His spiritual emotions were so turbulent that he wasn't thinking of going to Jhansi. He wanted to take a train to . . .anywhere. . . . Abhay spent his time in Jhargram chanting the holy name and becoming settled in detachment from his family."
Lélämåta,” Volume 1, Chapter 7, page 163 (emphasis added).

It is projected in this excerpt that Çréla Prabhupäda was in such a turbulent state that he was unable to think clearly and was willing to take a train to . . . anywhere! We are also told that he needed to become detached from his family. This is both offensive and against the basic philosophy, although that offense is somewhat covered over by the author here. It is sweet rice mixed with sand. This excerpt reflects the mentality of these “ISKCON” misleaders, viz., somehow the dependents of the devotees in gåhastha-äçrama or vänaprastha-äçrama were an impediment. So detachment from these “burdens” is required in order to make spiritual progress.

Should everyone, following the example of SSd, thus falsely renounce and then fall down as abominably and disgustingly as he did? Unfortunately, under such a pretext, untold number of nice devotees and their dependents were personally, emotionally, mentally, and philosophically tortured by these misleaders and their fanatical enforcers. Common decency demands that every devotee should be lovingly cared for, but now it is clear how so many hidden motivations were pre-planned and then put into action. They eventually blossomed to completely derail the movement. All intelligent devotees need to see how “lämåta” has indeed laid the foundation for this, i.e., it has contributed mightily to provoke the catastrophe.

It is quite distasteful that one’s spiritual master is deliberately and casually addressed by his childhood name, which is observed in the beginning chapters of the book. Since the principles of honoring and respecting higher authority (maryädä) must be observed at all times, that certainly also applies to biographical narratives. Neither Çréla Prabhupäda nor his predecessors ever addressed the äcäryas in such disrespectful manner. The etiquette of proper honor and respect is mandatory in dealings with higher authorities (çré-guru-caraṇe rati, ei se uttama-gati).

In retrospect, it is now clearly seen, on the flip side of that coin, that both SSd and his cohorts have accepted various “päda” names and elaborate “praëäma” mantras in imitation of Çréla Prabhupäda and other Sampradäya Äcäryas. All of this was instituted and enforced in the late Seventies via heavy-handed methods backed up by the asära G.B.C. This imitation unleashed fanatics on those devotees who saw the deviations, such as the establishment of zones for “guru.” All deviant nonsense!

"Suddenly, he was as homeless as any derelict on the street. In fact, many of them, with their long-time berths in flophouses, were more secure than he. They were ruined, but settled . . . he had no place."
Lélämåta” Volume 2, Chapter 6, page 96 (emphases added).

In reference to this most offensive excerpt, let us remember that Çréla Prabhupäda (following in the footsteps of his spiritual master) produced and distributed Back Home Back To Godhead periodicals and also produced, published and distributed other great Vaiñëava literature. Here, however, he is called homeless and compared to derelicts on the street! Apparently, Çréla Prabhupäda was not even as safe as them!

As per the revealed scriptures, the heart of the pure devotee is the resting place of the Lord, and such pure devotees reside in His heart (tomära hṛdoye sadä govinda-viçräm govinda kohena-mora vaisṇava parän). Therefore, it is the conditioned souls of this world, falsely feeling safe and secure in their temporary homes and institutions, who are actually unsafe and ultimately insecure. Çréla Prabhupäda's mission of flooding the world with Back to Godhead and immense Vaiñëava literatures was to facilitate all such people of this world to return to their original home. It is utter madness to imply such a glorious personality was ever insecure and homeless!

In retrospect, it is under the leadership and editorial stewardship of SSd that the distribution of that originally glorious periodical (B.T.G.) has dwindled to nothing more than an in-house publication, and it promotes various deviations of the day. After his egregious falldown, related deviations were implemented by the vitiated G.B.C, especially when it created a safe home for him (SSd)—the “retired renunicate äçrama.” Every devotee needs to see all these institutional arrangements as nothing more than concoctions. They are all linked to the original offense of disrespectfully considering Çréla Prabhupäda to be homeless (guruñu nära-matir/yasya vä näraké sah).

“To My Father, Gour Mohan De (1849-1930):
A pure devotee of Kåñëa, who raised me as a Kåñëa conscious child from the beginning of my life. In my boyhood ages, he instructed me how to play the mådaìga. He gave me Rädhä-Kåñëa Vigraha to worship, and he gave me Jagannätha-Ratha to duly observe the festival as my childhood play. He was kind to me, and I imbibed from him the ideas later on solidified by my spiritual master, the eternal father.”
- Kåñëa, The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Dedication.

“I am pleased that my generous father gave the first impression which was developed later into regulative devotional service by His Divine Grace. Mahäräja Prahläda also advised that such impressions of a godly relation must be impregnated from the beginning of childhood, otherwise one may miss the opportunity of the human form of life, which is very valuable, although it is temporary like others.”
- Çrémad-Bhägavatam, 1.12.30, purport

“In my childhood, I have actually seen my father receive not less than four guests every day, and in those days my father's income was not very great. Nonetheless, there was no difficulty in offering prasäda to at least four guests every day.”
- Caitanya-caritämåta, Madhya 3.41, purport.

"(His look) is peaceful and knowing, as if he has suddenly become a sädhu (holy man) on the day his father passed away."
Lélämåta,” Volume 1, Chapter 3, page 59 (emphasis added).

First, a few humble words ought to be offered in order to glorify Çréla Prabhupäda's father. As a Vaiñëava leader of the household (father and husband), he had established an ideal Kåñëa conscious environment: Establishing Çré Rädha-Kåñëa Deity worship (jugala-mürti, dekhiyä mora, parama-änanda hoya), encouraging observance of all ceremonial functions, training on mådaìga for kértana (rtanäd eva kåñëasya), and distributing prasäda to guests (bhuìkte bhojayate caiva).

In the above-mentioned quote from “Lélämåta,” SSd claims the passing away of such an ideal Vaiñëava jolted Çréla Prabhupäda into become a sädhu. However, the Dedication for the Kåñëa book does not at all support this. That quote rather shows how a pure devotee of the Lord--who, according to the injunctions of Bhägavata, had raised his son, Çréla Prabhupäda, as a Kåñëa concious child--was guiding a sädhu by any definition.

By following his Vaiñëava father's magnanimous example (pramäëaà kurute), and as per the devotional regulations of his spiritual master, Çréla Prabhupäda was certainly holy throughout his entire life. The spiritual emotions Çréla Prabhupäda felt upon losing (on this plane) his father, an advanced Vaiñëava, has been cheapened by SSd via useless talk (prajalpaù).

Çréla Prabhupäda went on to establish a world-wide society of Kåñëa conscious culture. SSd reminisces, writing nonsense, about his status after the passing of his father and is thus engaged in mental speculation. After the disappearance of Çréla Prabhupäda, the culture he established has now been practically undone by SSd, along with his cohorts.

It is clear now that there was this motivation to project Çréla Prabhupäda's pastimes on their own conditioned level (ätmavat manyate jagat), in order to subtly imply that the eleven pretenders, the so-called zonal-äcäryas, would attain to Çréla Prabhupäda's exalted platform soon. It is very bad logic, firmly rooted in dishonesty, and it helped to solidify such apa-siddhäntic slogans as “ritvik äcärya, then it becomes as good as an äcärya,” “put on the uniform to become a soldier,” and “mad guru si jagat-guru.”

Phaleëa paricéyate . One of the short reviews found in “Lélämåta,” written by an academic, summarizes how His Divine Grace Çréla Prabhupäda and his pastimes have been studied and understood by all these learned fellows: "It (the “Lélämåta”) is a very human story, with a very human A.C. Bhaktivedänta Swämé in the center." This review has had a cancerous effect on all the innocent readers of SSd’s nonsense book who have bought into what the professor had to say.

Reject the “Lélämåta

“So (we offer) our adoration, our worship, to Bhaktivinoda Öhäkura today, because he may bless us to make, peacefully, progress in Kåñëa consciousness. Äcärya-upäsanä: Simply by the blessings of the äcäryas, we can make very rapid progress.”
- Çréla Bhaktivinoda Öhäkura appearance day lecture, 9-3-71 (emphasis added)

A little philosophical analysis of the background of the author of the “Lélämåta” is certainly called for at this point. After the disappearance of Çréla Prabhupäda, as history has shown, the devotional background of his (and his other pretender mahä-bhägavata-zonal-äcärya-godbrother cohorts) has turned out to be highly objectionable and outright offensive to all sincere devotees. That era of the zonals marked the blossoming of the sahajiyä flowers, which produced many more seeds of deviations, seeds of deviation that are still sprouting and ongoing.

This “Lélämåta” has not pleased the Äcärya predecessors nor the Supreme Lord (yasyäprasädän na gatiḥ kuto 'pi). There is no history of a genuine author of Vaiñëava history having been degraded in devotional life after producing authorized Vaiñëava literature--literature that actually pleased the predecessors and the Lord. Instead, every one those exalted Vaiñëavas became worshipable (mad bhakta-püjäbhyadhikä). That is the Bhägavata standard.

"The responsibility of commissioning such a work rested with the Governing Body Commission. . . At their annual meeting in 1978, the G.B.C. resolved that a biography of Çréla Prabhupäda should be written, and that I would be the author."
Lélämåta,” Preface, page xi (emphasis added).

By creating the “retired renunciate äçrama” for the author of “Lélämåta,” the vitiated G.B.C., which should have objected to this literature having ever been printed with its imprimatur, has instead shown where their interests really reside, viz., protecting one of their own, come what may. It did not matter to them that the name of the spotless Äcärya Çréla Prabhupäda has been tarnished by this so-called glorification, which both subtly and openly reduced and minimized Çréla Prabhupäda. Nor did it matter to them that generations of bhaktas have been, and are currently being, misled by this book.

Thus, they have endangered the spiritual life of current and future generations of devotees. As per the famous verse of Çrémad-Bhägavatam, all these misleaders, by these actions, clearly show that they are proudly leading their blind followers to a never-before-seen level of ignorance or darkness (patatäà tamasi hy adhaù). Their rubber stamp of approval of “Lélämåta” binds them all to just such an outcome.

As per the well-known Western aphorism of Santayana, because they have not learnt from history, they have been condemned to repeat it. Recently, they rubber-stamped another similar literature, and it is supposedly glorifying Çréla Prabhupäda. Instead, it introduces many deviant interpretations. The name of that literature is Çréla Prabhupäda, the Founder Äcärya of ISKCON by Ravindra-svarüpa däsa. The various deviations contained in it are analyzed by Kailäsa Candra prabhu in his multi-part series The New Meaning of Founder-Äcärya: An “ISKCON” Dogma of Mass Liberation, which is a highly recommended read.

Your author is a bit of a cook. Just by adding a spoonful of potent yogurt culture to good quality milk, one can produce a pot of yogurt, i.e., only a spoonful of extraneous culture mandates the changed outcome. Similarly, these somewhat subtle deviations about the life and character of the pure devotee—all poisonous—when read and believed, will change one’s conception about him—for the worse. The “Lélämåta” has contributed to the covering over of genuine Kåñëa Conscious culture for nearly four decades. It is still producing negative repercussions, some of which are a bit difficult to discern.

The author of the so-called Lélämåta,” a pretender mahä-bhägavat and former zonal-äcärya, is not a person bhägavata at any level, and his book, Lélämåta,”does not fall under the category of the Book Bhägavata. Because all of our Sampradäya Äcäryas of the Bhägavata school are first-class devotees, nothing short of a first-class biography can really justify Çréla Prabhupäda’s glories. Such a literature, even if composed irregularly, will be accepted as first-class. Due to its sincerity in compilation, it will be accepted by all men and women who are thoroughly honest.

Although “ISKCON” fanatics and sentimentalists still foolishly cling to the notion that the book is great, this so-called “Lélämåta” could not be further from the definition of first-class—as per properly, accurately, and honestly glorifying the most recent mahä-bhägavata Äcärya, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedänta Swämé Çréla Prabhupäda. In name only, “Lélämåta” is supposedly amåta; in reality, it actually acts as virile poison (hälahala) in one's devotional life; indeed, it has even had this effect on SSd himself. Therefore, your author of this brief critique humbly pleads that all sincere and genuine followers of His Divine Grace Çréla Prabhupäda wholeheartedly reject the nescience biographical literature known as “Lélämåta.”

Om Tat Sat

Hare Kåñëa

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Quotes from the books of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada are copyright by the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust