Gurudeva’s sanga has stayed true to their decision to not discuss this issue anymore, and now KBM have come with a new statement where they say they are coming to a conclusion.
In this statement KBM looks at the misconceptions and reasons behind the opinions of Gurudeva’s sanga and discusses those. I’ve stated before that in this controversy, I have considered both sides to be right. With this statement, my view on this was challenged as they show how their conceptions is against sastra. This was a bit uncomfortable, because I then had to change my perceptions. To believe that both sides are right have been a comfortable position to be in.
This blog has been called neutral and objective, which certainly are qualities I strive for. In the field of journalism it’s a well known issue that journalists are supposed to cover issues objectively. But when you get close to an issue, you can’t help forming opinions on the subject. This is true with me as well. I can’t follow a debate as closely as this without forming an opinion. In the case of Gurudeva’s sanga, there’s just too many things that don’t add up. That they also have stopped debating this issue, gives me the impression that they have reached the end of their abilities to discuss this siddhanta.
This issue is actually a great example why we need to stay in the care of maha-bhagavats. They can dispel such things easily and we need them to make spiritual progress when we are stuck.
So what are the practical implications that I now have a different view than Gurudeva’s sanga? Personally, not a thing.
There is a saying in Norway that can be translated as such: “It’s possible to have two thoughts in your head at the same time”. The meaning is that it’s possible to entertain two differing ideas at the same time. A more subtle approach to this is that if a person who has done a lot of good, suddenly make a controversial statement on an issue (like race, sexuality and such), it’s still possible to celebrate the good a person have done while not accepting the controversial view.
For me this means that I recognize that we have differing ideas. And so what? They are working on their spiritual progress, and so am I. Everybody who is in this discussion and everybody who reads this blog is senior to me. But just as you don’t consider your qualification when you have greed, I don’t consider my qualification in spiritual life. If I did, I wouldn’t be able to write this blog.
When I first noticed the headlines about Srila Prabhupadas rasa, I didn’t think much of it because my immediate reaction was “Of course SP is a manjari”, so I dismissed it. It wasn’t until I got it pretty much spelled out that somebody disagreed that I got interested. My first blog post is 19th March, which means a lot had already happened by the time my interest was peaked. Whenever somebody challenges my perception, I get interested. I might not like it immediately, but give me a few days to mull it over and I might come around if the arguments are good. This is what happened to me in this debate, though I’ve mulled over the preaching strategy for a long time.
Examine which points of Krsna-Balarama’s statements they feel are not in line with sastra, and then examine their own points. They should sincerely search for the truth in an objective way, considering all angles. This is the procedure to come to proper conclusions of siddhanta, and this is the dharma of our devotional line.
This is what I have been trying to do in this debate when I came into it believing Srila Prabhupada is a manjari.
The glory of being wrong, is that we get the pleasure of making course adjustments when we recognize that we were wrong. Being wrong means making course adjustments until we get it right. We are just an infinite number of course adjustments away from success in spiritual life.
This blog is dedicated to working on our spiritual life. It’s about working on progress, which means you stumble, you fall, you deal with failure, you have misconceptions, you do something wrong and there’s plenty of room to do mistakes. Failures are okey, they are allowed. You just have to recognize it and make a slight course adjustment. Then keep on doing course adjustments.
So I have plenty of room for differing views and ideas and I give plenty of room to express them to me. I will not necessarily agree (and even I can turn to harshness), but it doesn’t make me react to the person itself in a negative way. I want to always side with siddhanta, and personal issues is of no interest.
Both sides are working on their spiritual life, and I have deep respect for that. As conditioned human beings we are work in progress, under construction. The person we are today will not be the person we are in 6 month, a year, several years. This is especially true when we progress spiritually. We are in the same line. We just have different conceptions, but in time even that line may become blurred as we progress and change.
As long as we stay in the association of maha-bhagavats, we will be fine. All of us.
Sadhu-sanga ki jaya!