691031 - Letter to Satsvarupa written from Tittenhurst, UK
A.C. BHAKTIVEDANTA SWAMI
International Society For Krishna Consciousness
Ascot Berkshire, ENGLAND
October 31, 1969
My Dear Satsvarupa,
Please accept my blessings. I beg to acknowledge receipt of your letter dated October 28, 1969 with enclosures. The pamphlet sermon is not unfavorable. It is indirectly favorable because in that pamphlet the writer has admitted that the Christian church is waning and people are seeking after some new type of religion. That he has admitted. He says "Suppose the Christian church is waning, suppose even that in 10 years it will have gone out of existence. What then?" So these Christian priest are already feeling the pulse of their religious principles, and they are not very much hopeful. He writes another place that a woman being asked by her friend why she was not coming to church, the woman replied, "Oh, we don't go to church anymore." So far as we are concerned, he has admitted that the boy whom he spoke with was soft-spoken and polite. He seemed intelligent and had obviously been well brought up. In another place he says "What interested me most however was that here was a boy who was obviously religiously inclined. He was trying to find God and was trying to help other people find God, and he had taken up his post in front of a Christian church to preach Krsna." Don't you think that indirectly he is feeling the effect of our preaching work and his whole pamphlet is written as if he is afraid of the Krsna cult, which is spreading like wildfire? So we shall not be at all discouraged by such writings. Rather we should take the real fact that people are actually hankering after the real type of religion.
Yesterday we had a very successful meeting at Oxford at the Town Hall. About 350 boys, girls, old men, ladies and gentlemen participated, and we made them all dance and chant with us, every one. After the meeting, many boys and gentlemen came to congratulate me. Out of them, one was an Egyptian gentleman. Similarly, in another meeting in Conway Hall one Chinese boy came and offered his obeisances exactly like my disciples, bowing down to my feet. Negro boys are also taking part. So it is a fact that our movement will appeal to the heart of everyone, and they will join us. If one is not very much sophisticated and overburdened by material contamination, then he must respond to our call. The only thing is that we as preachers must be very, very pure, sincere and serious. The crude example is that when a man is physically very strong, and if he has sex intercourse with a woman, she is sure to become pregnant. When pregnancy fails, it is due to the weakness of the male partner generally. Similarly, if we are full with Krishna vitality, then wherever we go the audience will be impregnated with Krishna Consciousness. Now some of our leading boys, like you, Brahmananda, Tamala, etc. you should be very careful to train your other junior Godbrothers to the right type of preacher, keeping full faith in Krishna and the Spiritual Master, and executing the routine works of chanting and following the regulations. That will make you all great preachers, and wherever you go you will come out victorious.
Now coming to some other points discussed in the Cathedral Sermons pamphlet, we may take notice of the writer's statement which may help us in understanding the real position of Christian religion. In one of the statements he says the Bishop Dean, the former Executive Officer of the Anglican Communion, said to the general Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada last month that he gives the church as it exists today ten more years of life. The reason the church was dying he said was because it had become irrelevant. This means that the church people no more can convince the advanced, educated men of the present day. In another place he says in discussing the Ten Commandents of the Bible about the sanctity of (human life). Instead of exactly quoting the commandment "Thou shalt not kill," he replaces by his own words "Thou shalt do no murder". But he does not know how his own words reflect to the then society wherein Lord Jesus Christ was preaching. To say to his audience, "Thou shalt do no murder" means they were very much accustomed to commit murder. So what is the position of that society where the members are accustomed to commit murder, and what class of preaching can be made to such persons? As we see in another religious principle there is instruction that henceforward you shall not co-habit with your mother. So we have to judge such societies where there are murderers and those having sex life with their mothers, what kind of men they are. In the Bhagavad Gita the religious principles are divided into three categories: in the modes of goodness, passion and ignorance. Generally, all so-called principles are in the modes of passion and ignorance. Maybe there are some moral instructions, but moral instructions without God-consciousness is impossible to follow. In another place the gentleman quotes one book written by Prof. Charles Smith. The book's name is "The Paradox of Jesus in the Gospels". In this book it is admitted that all the statements in the Bible are not directly spoken by Jesus. Some of them are staged through the mouth of Jesus Christ; and specifically this passage: "I am the way, the Truth and the light. No man comes unto the Father but by me." This gentleman admits that it is put into the mouth of Jesus because that is the literary convention of the author of the 4th Gospel. Such kinds of observations definitely suggests that there are many passages in the Gospel which are later on set up to be spoken by Lord Jesus Christ, but actually they were manufactured by different devotees. So far as our Bhagavad Gita is concerned, we do not find any such thing. Everywhere it is stated sri bhagavan uvāca: the Supreme Personality of Godhead said. And all the acaryas have accepted these words as they are spoken by the Lord. No authorized acharya has ever commented that it was put into the mouth of Krishna by Vyasadev or Sanjaya or any other person.
I give you all these hints not for general discussion, but for your personal understanding to know the respective positions of different types of religious principles. Ours is transcendental because we are not very much concerned with the minor moral or immoral principles, although each and every devotee is a first class moralist. But our religious principles or natural occupational duty is to learn how to love Krishna. We are practicing this and we are teaching this. So let us very steadily stick to our principles and our movement will surely come out successful.
I hope this meet you in good health.
Your ever well-wisher,
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami