Notes from a think tank

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12.4 HH Niranjana Swami

Text COM:1738372 (60 lines)

From: Shyamasundara ACBSP
Date: 02-Oct-98 07:19
Subject: GBC supporter
---------- Forwarded Message ----------

Letter COM:1708629 (50 lines)

From: Basu Ghosh (das) ACBSP (Baroda - IN)
Subject: For your information
> Letter COM:1707274 (30 lines)
> From: Niranjana Swami
> Date: 21-Sep-98 14:51
> To: Basu Ghosh (das) ACBSP (Baroda - IN) [5878]
> Reference: Text COM:1705949 by Basu Ghosh (das) ACBSP (Baroda - IN)
> Subject: What is your opinion, Maharaj? Are you willing to get involved?
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> Well, I was the one scheduled to lead mangala arotika the following
> morning after the announcement. Dayarama arranged for a circle of
> bramacharis to stand around me so that no woman could break into the
> ranks. Dayarama spent a good amount of time talking with me about his
> concerns the previous evening. What can I say? I had to completely agree
> with him.
> On the other hand, since I believe that the “Women’s rights” movement in
> ISKCON is simply a ploy for women to impose themselves on men’s minds,
> whenever confronted by them or their advocates (those who have
> unfortunately swallowed the bait), I just adopt a mood similar to that
> given in SB 7.14.6. Externally, I just say, “Yeah, that’s nice.” But when the
> conversation is over, it’s gone. I just don’t even think about it again. I’m by
> no means a woman-hater. I believe in women’s rights. They should
> definitely treated with all respect as should any Vaisnava, and I believe
> that nobody can find any evidence that I have not done that. But I really
> don’t believe that they have such a cause of global importance that’s it’s
> pumped up to be.
> Anyway, because of my stance, I probably would not get too involved. You
> picked a bad time to ask me take up extracurricular work. I’ve been
> preaching in the middle of a Russian revolution for the last two months,
> and right now the mere thought of throwing myself into another
> confrontation shorts my circuits. You might try asking me again when I’ve
> had time to recuperate from my battle wounds.
> Hoping this meets you in good health.
> Your servant,
> Niranjana Swami
> (Text COM:1707274) -----------------------------------------

Seems plausable that Maharaj will be an ally in the final stages after the

drafting of any proposed GBC resolution.


Basu Ghosh Das

P.S. I await responses from other GBC’s I posted this too.

(Text COM:1708629) -----------------------------------------
(Text COM:1738372) -----------------------------------------

12.5 HH Sridhar Swami

Text COM:1738387 (22 lines)

From: Shyamasundara ACBSP
Date: 02-Oct-98 07:38
Subject: Another GBC sannyasi supporter
---------- Forwarded Message ----------

Comment: Text COM:1719476 by Bhakti Vikasa Swami

Subject: Sridhar Swami
> Letter COM:1718607 (2 lines)
> From: Sridhar Swami
> Date: 25-Sep-98 18:11
> To: Basu Ghosh (das) ACBSP (Baroda - IN) [6138]
> Reference: Text COM:1714038 by Basu Ghosh (das) ACBSP (Baroda - IN)
> Comment: Text 998 by Basu Ghosh ACBSP Subject: Maharaj, what is your
> opinion? Are you willing to get involved?
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> I am worried about the loss of our culture in a number of ways . How to
> protect women is one of them. I would like to help . We could talk. (Text
> COM:1718607) -----------------------------------------
(Text COM:1719328) -----------------------------------------
(Text COM:1738387) -----------------------------------------

12.6 HH Sivarama Swami

Text COM:1738389 (20 lines)

From: Shyamasundara ACBSP
Date: 02-Oct-98 07:40
Subject: More GBC supporters
---------- Forwarded Message ----------

Letter COM:1719476 (4 lines)

From: Bhakti Vikasa Swami
Date: 26-Sep-98 03:13
To: Rasananda Swami (USA) [2848] (forwarded: 26-Sep-98 03:20)
To: Basu Ghosh (das) ACBSP (Baroda - IN) [6190]
To: Shyamasundara (das) ACBSP [5076]
To: Krishna Kirti (das) HDG (Baltimore - USA) [677] (received: 26-Sep-
To: (sent: 26-Sep-98 03:19)
Reference: Text COM:1719328 by Basu Ghosh (das) ACBSP (Baroda - IN)
Comment: Text COM:1719604 by Shyamasundara ACBSP
Subject: Sivaram Swami
After the GBC meetings last year I spoke with several GBCs about this.
Sivaram M. was particularly not in favor of feminism. He said, “When men
become weak, women become prominent.” I spoke with him in the company of BB Govinda, who seemed to acquiesce.
(Text COM:1719476) -----------------------------------------
(Text COM:1738389) -----------------------------------------

12.7 HH Danavir Goswami: On "our side"

Text COM:1738397 (72 lines)

From: Shyamasundara ACBSP
Date: 02-Oct-98 07:55
Subject: Davavir Goswami on our side
---------- Forwarded Message ----------

Letter COM:1728293 (61 lines)

From: Rasananda Swami (USA)
Date: 28-Sep-98 22:09
To: Krishna Kirti (das) HDG (Baltimore - USA) [738] (received: 2:10)
Comment: Text COM:1729015 by Shyamasundara ACBSP
Subject: women & management
Dear Devotees.

Accept my obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

Here are some letters by Danavir Goswami that he sent to me. He does agree
in participating in our discussions. Please, send your comments to him as

Hoping you are well, ys


Dear Maharaja, Kansas City, September 23, 1998

Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada. Thank
you for the kind message.

I am el fool numero uno, so anything I say, etc. is fraught with unlimited

faults. Please bear that in mind as I respond to your inquiry about women

It is a sign that our men are becoming weak. It is a sign that it is not a very desirable position to be a GBC anymore (thankless task). It seems that there is some room for improvement in the overall management strategy of the NA continent. Our movement is beginning to become more influenced by vox populi rather than sound brahminical advice or clear directives from Srila Prabhupada, which is lamentable. It is true that Malati Prabhu is an extraordinary servant of Srila Prabhupada. It is true that some persons supported her becoming a GBC for less-than the loftiest reasons (i.e. just to have a woman on the GBC).

Srila Prabhupada preferred men managers, (GBC’s) because of women’s natural frailties, however I don’t think he would rule out the possibility of a woman GBC if she was qualified. Although Malati Prabhu works with the handicap of a woman’s body, she is so incredibly enthusiastic and sincere that she probably compensates for it.

There is plenty more to discuss about the state of affairs, but I will stop for now since I am very egotistical thinking that I know everything and that is an arrogant stance to take.

I hope this finds you in the best of health.

Your servant,

Danavir dasa Goswami

Having said that and living with the present reality,

>Thank you Maharaja for the reply about Columbia and for inviting me to
>participate in a conference you are organizing (I agree to be included).
>The reason I inquired about Columbia is because there are a few of
>PSwami’s disciples in Kansas City and I wanted to have some background
>information regarding the past episode in Columbia and PSwami’s >involvement.

>Your servant,

>Danavir dasa Goswami
(Text COM:1728293) -----------------------------------------

Text COM:1788844 (27 lines)
From: Trivikrama Swami
Date: 21-Oct-98 15:32
To: GHQ [393]
To: Jivan Mukta Dasa (sent: 21-Oct-98 15:38)
Reference: Text COM:1784639 by Internet: Jivan Mukta Dasa
Comment: Text COM:1790043 by Shyamasundara ACBSP
Subject: Re: DIS Possible action
Dear Prabhus

Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada!

I would like to thank Shyamasundar prabhu for inviting me on to this
conference, it has taken me some time to finally catch up with all the past letters. Although I don’t agree with every posting, in general I am very favorable to your cause and I am honored to be included in your association.
Srila Prabhupada requested me to take, and awarded me sannyas in 1971.
In my childhood there was peace in my house, as my father was a strong
leader who we all were happy to please. I have two older sisters and a
younger brother. When I was 12 my father died suddenly, and everything
changed, as my mother took to drinking.

I once told Srila Prabhupada that my mother was an alcoholic, he responded by saying, What? You can not control your mother? This answer was a little shocking, but also very attractive, a culture where women were controlled, even by their sons. I saw that Srila Prabhupada was controlling us, both men and women, but it was clearly exercised out of love.

So ISKCON is a voluntary society, we have to be careful to remember this principal. Thank you for bearing with me while I made this little introduction. I will try to make what little conribution I can to our cause.

Your servant

Trivikram Swami
(Text COM:1788844) -----------------------------------------

Text COM:1791328 (11 lines)
From: Trivikrama Swami
Date: 22-Oct-98 13:54
To: GHQ [405]
To: Jivan Mukta Dasa (sent: 22-Oct-98 14:00)
Reference: Text COM:1790043 by Shyamasundara (das) ACBSP
Subject: DIS Trivikram Swami

> Your little introduction was quite interesting, that Srila Prabhupada

> thought a12 year old boy should control his mother if she went astray.
> yhs
> shyamasundara dasa

Not that Srila Prabhupada thought that at 12 I should control my mother, but the problem was still there when I spoke to him as an adult, and he wondered why?

(Text COM:1791328) -----------------------------------------

Section 13

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