Writings

ISKCON is always full of surprises!

Dear disciples and friends,

Please accept my blessings. All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

I last wrote to you from the plane, en route from Vilnius, Lithuania to Tallinn, Estonia.

Ananda Caitanya prabhu and I landed in Tallinn and were met by my disciple Ananta Shakti and some of the other local devotees, who then took us back to the temple. We had a nice weekend there, and among other things installed a new Chairman of the local Temple Council, a devotee named Vishvavasu prabhu from Russia.

Tallinn is where Murali Krishna das has been operating from time to time, and while I was there I got some further reports about his activities. I was told that now he is claiming to be the next link in the parampara. His logic is apparently that of Srila Prabhupada’s disciples, the only one who got Prabhupada’s mercy was Gour Govinda Maharaja – none of the others were qualified. And then among the disciples of Gour Govinda Maharaja Murali Krishna is the leader, who has got Maharaja’s mercy, so he is the next link in the parampara!

Unfortunately there are some devotees in and around ISKCON who are easily misled, and this is the case here. Fortunately though we also received news that some of the devotees who were bewildered by him are now coming to their senses and have rejected him.

ISKCON is always full of surprises!

We flew back to Vilnius on Sunday night, January 27th, and then did some programmes in Lithuania the following few days, till I flew off to Los Angeles to spend some days with His Holiness Giriraja Maharaja.

Maharaja had a bypass operation on his heart some years ago, and has only been able to make a slow recovery, but part of his programme is to walk vigorously every day. I went with him on his walks, and sure enough we were flying along the local streets for an hour a day. I do extensive parikramas in Sri Vrindavana Dhama whenever I go there, but I was struggling to keep up with Maharaja as he strode boldly through the streets of Santa Barbara.

The evening I flew out to New Zealand I stopped on the way to the airport at the flat of Hridayananda Maharaja, another one of the most senior devotees in ISKCON. We had a lively discussion about the application of Krishna conscious principles in different social environments, and how certain of the external aspects of Krishna consciousness may not be so important.

Then I flew to Auckland, where I am right now, visiting my 89 year old mother. It’s a quiet time here, but that allows me to catch up with my e-mail and various other matters I’m working on, which otherwise are very difficult to keep up with.

On Monday I will be flying to Singapore, and then life will again become very busy, with preaching programmes there plus in neighbouring Malaysia and Bali. I’ll let you know what happens there shortly.

Hoping this meets you well.

Your ever well wisher,

Bhakti Caitanya Swami

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