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Posthumous Initiation in ISKCON:
Is it sanctioned by Srila Prabhupada?
by Krishna-kirti das (HDG)
Hare Krishna 
Hare Krishna 
Krishna Krishna 
Hare Hare 
Hare Rama 
Hare Rama 
Rama Rama 
Hare Hare

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Summary of Contents


Srila Prabhupada’s books are shown to be the foundation of all other instructions he issued outside of his published books. It is further shown that because these other instructions are based on his books, they are also authoritative. Claims that some letters written by Srila Prabhupada contain benevolent lies to placate ambitious disciples are shown to be false and based on partially quoted references.

Physical Presence

The key terms "physical presence" and "departure" are explained with regard to evidence in Srila Prabhupada’s books. This definition is then applied to various instructions wherein Srila Prabhupada uses the terms "absence" or "disappearance." This definition also explains how TFO’s attempt to annul the term "disappearance" is fallacious. "Interplanetary Diksa," a term coined by TFO’s authors, is shown to be based on a series of misquoted references.


Examples of managerial bodies that have authority over gurus, sannyasis, brahmanas, etc. are found in Srila Prabhupada's books. It is shown that although brahmanas and other spiritual orders are exempt from punishment, they are not exempt if they deviate. It is demonstrated that gurus, sannyasis, brahmanas, etc. are themselves not managers even though they are subject to scrutiny by a managerial authority. Thus it is shown that the directives in Srila Prabhupada’s will do not refer to gurus.

Amara-Ajnaya: The Standing Order to Be a Guru

The oft quoted "amara-ajnaya" verse refers to both the neophyte and the highly advanced devotees. Quotes by Srila Prabhupada demonstrate that the amara-anjaya verse also refers to the diksa-guru. Srila Prabhupada’s order to be a guru is shown to be the amara-ajnaya verse. Discipleship is shown to be sufficient authorization from the spiritual master to be a guru.

Disciplic Succession, Initiation,
and Qualifications of a Bona Fide Guru

A practical demonstration of how to resolve seemingly contradictory instructions shows how devotees not on the level of an uttama-adhikari may also accept disciples. Their limitations are also described. Divya-jnana is explained; the term "partial divya-jnana" is shown to be self-contradictory and fallacious. Kanistha- and madhyama-adhikaris can also be pure devotees. Persons who are not liberated can act as guru and acharya by strictly following the disciplic succession. Uttama-adhikaris sometimes fall down, though rarely. TFO claims that gaps in our disciplic succession prove that acaryas in our disciplic succession have posthumously accepted disciples—this is shown to be based on out-of-context quotes. Initiation is shown to be an essential formality; making official promises and taking of vows are essential.

The July 9th Letter

Two types of possible countermands are examined. July 9th letter is classified as an implicit countermand. The explicit countermands suggested by TFO’s authors are shown to be imaginary. Evidence accepted by TFO is used to explicitly define the time-frame of the July 9th letter to be until the disappearance of Srila Prabhupada from his physical body. It is shown that TFO does not contain any explicit references to support their claim that the time-frame of the July 9th letter extends beyond the manifest appearance of Srila Prabhupada.

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CHAKRA 10 February 2002

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