Loose screws

Anything that is not Krishna is not Krishna and will eventually dry up and fall away. Everyone is born with certain inclinations or propensities, and has to act on them. Just like Arjuna. He was a warrior, and his business was killing, and that’s what Krishna asked of him. By dovetailing our propensities in devotional service to Krishna, they become purified. Everything has a relation to Krishna. The only way we learn that is by applying it for Krishna. Otherwise the propensity cannot be purified, cannot be resolved.

Prabhupada could see everyone as he is, as a part in relation to the whole. We’re like screws to the part, separated from the machine. The self-realized soul can see, “Oh, this part belongs here.” Apart from that, we’re lost. We must have the guidance of the self-realized soul. This is the meaning of Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakur’s essay Putana: Without a self-realised soul at the head of the institution, it would become nothing more than atheism disguised as its opposite.

Now we’re in a time when we’re without Prabhupada, and simultaneously without someone of his caliber. We have to adhere strictly to the practices that Srila Prabhupada set for us. Otherwise, institutional allegiance is no use—”I am ISKCON, therefore I’m okay.” That won’t save us. We need to learn and understand Srila Prabhupada’s instructions, and to the degree that we follow those instructions, we’ll be protected. And accordingly we will see what is not in line with Srila Prabhupada’s instructions.

There’s no alternative. We have to be serious about Srila Prabhupada. Other things—the institution, dogmas, sentiments—are meaningless. It is Prabhupada who gives us Krishna. We have to eliminate those things that are in doubt, reservations. We have to trust our inner determination. “If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you, but make allowance for their doubting too…” Srila Prabhupada is the point, the central pivot. If we can have that faith that Srila Prabhupada is the right thing, whatever is not in accordance with his instructions we will see it for what it is and leave it aside. This is that time.

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