Dear Devotees, please accept my humble obeisances.
All glories to ISKCON Founder-Acharya Srila Prabhupada.
As many of you who know me, either in person or by reputation, my name is Krishna-kirti das, and I am a former disciple of the ISKCON leader who is known by the title and name of H.H. Hridayananda das Goswami.
As some will recall, the circumstances that occasioned the break in our relationship occurred early in 2009, when it came to the attention of the devotee public that he had caused to take place and participated in a concocted ceremony resembling a wedding between two men.
This action of his was his own attempt to fulfill a recommendation he made five years earlier, that “some serious, formal and public recognition and appreciation of gay monogamy is, in my view, in the best interest of ISKCON and its members.”
And two months after this recommendation, he wrote a lengthy treatise titled “Vaisnava Moral Theology and Homosexuality” (2005) to substantiate his recommendation.
The 2005 treatise puts forward a number of specious arguments to support a moral philosophy called consequentialism, in order to justify what he calls “gay monogamy,” a social arrangement Prabhupada rejected. In 2013 he used the same consequentialism to dispute the authority of the pastime of Yudhisthira gambling away Draupadi in Shakuni’s rigged match, a pastime that Prabhupada and other acharyas accept as authentic. Hridayananda Maharaja says, “I do not deny or reject Prabhupada’s teaching on this matter, I simply focus on what I find in the Bhagavatam.”
But then if he can read the Bhagavatam itself and get the true meaning without accepting Srila Prabhupada’s purports, what does it even mean to call Srila Prabhupada’s purports “purports”? In this way, he nullifies Srila Prabhupada’s authority.
As does Lord Caitanya, Srila Prabhupada rejects this very mode of interpretation that Hridayananda Maharaja has been promoting: “The parampara system does not allow one to deviate from the commentaries of the previous acaryas. By depending upon the previous acaryas, one can write beautiful commentaries. However, one cannot defy the previous acaryas. The false pride that makes one think that he can write better than the previous acaryas will make one’s comments faulty.” (CC Antya 7.134, purport)
Hridayananda Maharaja’s 2005 treatise nullifies Srila Prabhupada’s authority in the same way, by concluding that despite Srila Prabhupada’s unequivocal purport to Srimad Bhagavatam 3.20.26, the Bhagavatam itself says nothing about “mutually consensual” homosexuality. With whatever Srila Prabhupada said about the matter nullified, Hridayananda Maharaja proceeds to apply his philosophy of consequentialism to justify his recommendation for gay monogamy.
But despite a 2009 promise by him not to preach gay monogamy any more, he still defends his recommendation.
Because Hridayananda das Goswami defiantly stands by his prior recommendation for gay monogamy and continues to purposefully and outspokenly deviate from the commentary of his own acharya, Srila Prabhupada, whenever it suits his purposes, and hence cause others to deviate with him, he cannot be considered a bona fide spiritual master in any respect. Because Hridayananda das Goswami has long since ceased to be a proper link in the guru-parampara coming through Srila Prabhupada, my leaving him as a disciple in 2009, and declaration of such, was simply a formal recognition of his fallen condition, for which many others and I had tried many times to correct.
That is the background for the following announcement:
Two weeks ago in Dallas, Texas, His Holiness Bhakti Vikasa Swami very kindly accepted me as his shiksha-disciple. Sri Bhakti Vikasa Maharaja is aware of the above circumstances, and he is also aware that I did not seek the blessings of Hridayananda Maharaja before approaching him to become his shiksha-disciple. Since Hridayananda Maharaja is no longer a bona fide spiritual master, there would have been no point in asking.
Krishna-kirti dasa: “My Relationship with Hridayananda” published on 14 Feb. 2009 on Sampradaya Sun.
Hridayananda das Goswami, “Gay monogamy preferred to promiscuity” published on 19 Dec. 2004 on Jagannath’s Chakra.
“Moral Theology and Homosexuality” published in 2005 on Acharyadeva.com.
“Infallibility of Guru & Shastra” published on 18 Mar. 2014 on Ask Acharyadeva.
“Hridayanda dasa Goswami’s Letter to the GBC” published on 15 Apr. 2009 on Dandvats.
“Hridayananda Das Goswami’s response to Krishna Kirti Das on Krishna West” published on 10 Apr. 2014 on ISKCON.us.