IN THE HARE KRISHNA MOVEMENT?
by Prtha devi dasi
For those who stumbled on this site by accident, or just for devotees who do not know, don't let the title mislead you. Hare Krishna devotees do not practice polygamy. So why this web page? Because a handful of certain men in our movement have recently shown an *interest* in polygamy. They claim it is for the protection of the women of this movement. However, if they could not have sex with these women they claim they want to protect we would see they have no interest in such protection whatsoever. Therefore, time to be honest. Let us take a closer look at polygamy and what Prabhupada FULLY has to say about it, along with our higher teachings which start with celibacy not sex! And any polygamist who claims he will not enjoy such women is lying.
My apologies for the length of this article. I am merely trying to hit upon every point the kali-yuga polygamists have twisted and hit upon themselves. They definitely have spent a lot of time thinking about it! We all know why. <g> I can't cover everything as they will always come up with a new angle, but at least I have tried to put a stop to their maya - their attempt to contaminate the women, teenagers and the men of this movement.
Also please note that there are a few men who may not be polygamists but who believe in male superiority. If you remove the word "polygamist" and replace it with "men who think they are superior" you will often find the same applies to them. Know that these men are the exception to the men in our movement and not the rule. At best, they have been misinformed of our teachings and a sincere man will want to hear truth.
Since this is going to be a long read, stop right now. Get yourself a cup of herbal tea - Sri Vishnu, Sri Vishnu , Sri Vishnu, or Hare Krishna :-), a comfy chair, relax and read on.
I have also created sections, divided by colored type and/or a division line to make it a little easier so you can put it away and come back later. It is worth the read because hopefully, no one will be able to convince you that polygamy is Krishna Conscious by the time you are done!
I would like to thank Babru das , Mahanidhi dasa, Bhuvanapavani d.d. Kalakanta dd, Praharana dd and my various godsisters and godbrothers who contributed. Some names have been withheld for protection unless permission was given for it to be used, but what sincere and wonderful devotees they are!
WARNING: If you "don't want to hear it," just want to hear about Krishna and let someone else resolve the problems or think problems will just automatically go away, or if you are thin skinned, don't read any further. If you do, please don't come complaining to me. You've been wanred. :) (Sanyasis might not want to read it.)
POLYGAMY IN THE HARE KRISHNA MOVEMENT
By Prtha devi dasi
Recently there has been a resurge in the interest of polygamy. Years ago in this movement it was common knowledge that Prabhupada had discontinued polygamy. Currently that instruction seems to have been forgotten, ignored, minimized or brushed under the carpet. This needs to be straightened out.
One might see, in the Vedic scriptures, polygamy advocated. The instructions of the pure devotee jagat guru are more important than the Vedic literature because we cannot always understand such advanced knowledge, nor are we always advanced enough to follow it. Therefore in his instructions he explains various points as well as tells us what we should or should not be doing, what we are advanced enough to do and not advanced enough to do, or alternatives.
Sometimes his instructions appear to be different from the Vedas. In that case one must ALWAYS follow the instructions of Srila Prabhupada.
Real polygamy is not possible in this age. To begin with, real polygamy provided separate housing for each wife. This not only kept the women more peaceful, decreasing jealousy, giving her a home of her own - a definite female need, but also kept the husband from considering any type of perversion, as when a man gets two or more women who are accessible to him under one roof he can develop idea's he normally would not have. To afford separate housing in kali-yuga is impossible.
Admittedly Prabhupada DID have us experiment with polygamy. There is no denying that. However, it was just an experiment. He instructed the men to behave in a very advanced way and was only concerned about protecting the women of this movement. It was about protection, not how many women a man can accumulate who can admire him or tell him how wonderful he is, and all the men can look up to him in awe. This is usually low self-esteem and woman is not to be used to resolve such issues. A therapist or a qualified self-help book should be used, not people. (If they are using women, they are also using their godbrothers.) Shortly after Prabhupada tried this experiment of polygamy he saw that protection was not the result. Instead it became a license for illicit sex and exploitation of women. He soon revoked the instruction.
"Dear Karandhara, Please accept my blessings. I have received your letter of 1/24/73 concerning polygamy and feel that this policy must be strictly prohibited within our society. If it is not it shall only cause chaos, as what was possible under the system of pure Vedic Culture is impossible at the present time." SPL, Melbourne, 10 February, 1973
Here, Prabhupada very clearly points out that only in a PURE Vedic society did polygamy work. No man is that pure anymore. Nor is any women truthfully pure enough to handle it. These are not criticisms, just facts. We are all in the fire of purification. One who thinks he has already achieved sufficient perfection is the one in greatest trouble. It is a disservice to men to advocate polygamy. It will only lead to their falldown. In addition, Srila Prabhupada also warns of chaos and gives the very specific instruction that polygamy is *prohibited.*
Prabhupada's real interest in polygamy was only in regard to protection, not about women's inferiority on a spiritual or intellectual level, only physically. However, when he saw his male disciples were not qualified he retracted the instruction of marrying more than one woman and changed it to a definite "NO."
While some men claim polygamy will resolve the divorce issue, this is illusion at best. It will only increase this problem. It is hard enough making a marriage work with one wife, what to speak of two or three. Matter of fact, more often than not it is men who are having difficulty or are unsatisfied with their present relationship who start desiring another woman.
Relationships are not easy. They require work, involvement and self- purification from both partners, not only the wife.
In polygamy a woman is more likely to leave, not less. There are not any legal marital papers, which will eventually make her feel there is insufficient commitment or that she, and her children, will not be properly provied for. In addition, it is hard to live with another woman in the house. Thus divorce.
Then there are children. What a mess. When there is some disharmony in the marriage, polygamy merely allows a man to run from wife to wife whenever one isn't "making him happy." He is miserable and thinks a new woman will resolve that. In this way he never has to look inside himself or take to purification.
Srila Prabhupada created a brahmacarini ashrama for women who don't marry, therefore there is protection. In addition, there are not large numbers of unmarried women wanting to marry. so there is no need for polygamy. While some men brag how men are so superior that more of them join this movement than women, it works both ways. Since less women join there is, once again, no need for polygamy. For kali-yuga men, it is simply an excuse for more sex. Polygamy goes against the instructions of Srila Prabhupada.
"My Dear Satsvarupa, Regarding your various questions. First let us understand that polygamy cannot be permitted in our society. Legally it is impossible and neither are there many of our devotees who are prepared to assume the responsibility for many wives. Therefore as I have suggested previously as they do in Christian religion they have so many convent where the women stay and they receive protection. The point is that the women must be protected and it is the duties of the leaders of our society to see that this is carried out." SPL, Melbourne, 10 February, 1973
Rather than men desiring more than one wife and *claiming* it is for the purpose of woman protection, those men who sincerely are interested in the protection of the ladies should look into the conditions and expectations of the brahmacarini ashrama's, making sure the women are not overworked, are properly protected and not kept in anxiety or bullied, are taken care of including emotionally, financially and medically, and that they have a some free time or time to themselves - to become centered and peaceful, that they do not have to give up their sense of self and merge with the temple presidents or someone else's idea of what a good brahmacarini should be like in order to survive or in order to be viewed as Krishna Conscious. (She is capable of figuring that out for herself by studying Prabhupada's books and lecutures.) Such involvement would reveal what men truthfully want to protect women and what men merely want to enjoy women. A man does not have to marry to assure the safety of the Vaisnavi's.
"My Dear Rupanuga, Please accept my blessings. I am in receipt of your letter dated 31/1/73. After conferring with my various GBC representatives I have concluded that polygamy must be strictly prohibited in our society. Although it is a Vedic institution still there are so many legal implications. Neither are many of our men fixed up enough to tend for more than one wife. Polygamy will simply increase the sex life and our philosophy is to gradually decrease the sex life till eventually there is no sex life. The policy should be that all the women are given the utmost protection. Women are looking for husbands because they feel unprotected so it is up to the senior members to give all protection to the women. Letter to: Rupanuga Sydney 14 February, 1973"
While some have argued that Prabhupada discontinued polygamy only due to legal difficulties, Prabhupada makes it very clear in this letter that it is not merely limited to legalities, but due to the *increase* of sex life men will desire. He clearly states that they are not fixed up enough. Any man who thinks they are fixed up enough, that man is in great illusion. Prabhupada's instructions weren't just for the 1960s and 70's, but eternal.
He also states women are looking for husband for protection, not sex. I only mention this because in the brahmacarini ashrama women are strictly taught that one should not get married for sex, but in the brahmacari ashrama they teach, "Feeling lusty? Get a wife." No wonder there is such high divorce rate! Right from the start the two partners enter the relationship with totally different goals and philosophies! Therefore this must be corrected. A brahmacari should marry because he wants to protect a woman and because he likes her as a person, not resolve his lust issues. That is something men must resolve first in order to become qualified to be a husband. After all, she is a devotee too and wants to keep her vows.
Prtha devi dasi
VNN © 1999 VNN
March 25, 1999 VNN3417
Lord Ramachandra's Example: Only One Wife
BY BABHRU DAS
EDITORIAL, Mar 25 (VNN) — Ameyatma prabhu's lengthy response to Prtha's complaints about polygamy seems to miss one important source: a verse and purport in the Ninth Canto of Srimad-Bhagavatam. Chapter 10, verse 54 says, Lord Ramacandra took a vow to accept only one wife and have no connection with any other women. He was a saintly king, and everything in His life was good, untinged by qualities like anger. He taught good behavior for everyone, especially for the householders, in terms of varnasrama-dharma. Thus He taught the general public by His personal activities. In his purport, Srila Prabhupada explains this further: Eka-patni-vrata, accepting only one wife, was the glorious example set by Lord Ramacandra.
One should not accept more than one wife. In those days, of course, people did marry more than one wife. Even Lord Ramacandra's father accepted more wives than one. But Lord Ramacandra, as an ideal king, accepted only one wife, mother Sita. When Mother Sita was kidnapped by Ravana and the Raksasas, Lord Ramacandra, as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, could have married hundreds and thousands of Sitas, but to teach us how to be faithful He was to His wife, He fought with Ravana and finally killed him. The Lord punished Ravana and rescued His wife to instruct men to have only one wife. Lord Ramacandra accepted only one wife and manifested sublime character, thus setting an example for householders. A householder should live according to the ideal of Lord Ramacandra, who showed how to be a perfect person.
Srila Prabhupada makes abundantly clear in this purport his desire that we establish daivi-varnasrama-dharma by marrying only one wife and remaining faithful to her throughout our lives. Since Ameyatma invests much in dates, let's note that this volume was published in 1977. Ameyatma's research shows that, in the abstract, we should have little objection to the kind of polygamy practiced by men with qualifications similar to King Dasarath. We should also note, however, that even Dasarath's household was not perfectly peaceful. If men less qualified than he try to care for more than one wife, we can expect just the sorts of problems we have experienced over the years.
In fact, our godbrothers' attempts at polygamy were really meant for increasing their sense gratification, regardless of their attempts to rationalize their behavior. I know of no such arrangements in which the wives were all equally satisfied with the results over the long run. In the conversation Ameyatma cites as Srila Prabhupada's last and final instruction on the matter, Srila Prabhupada says another wife would be allowed [i]f the woman allows husband. He imposed the same restriction on acceptance of the sannyasa ashram by his married disciples. This shows the wife's importance in the family and underscores Srila Prabhupada's assertion that both husband and wife should be faithful.
In trying to introduce spiritual culture to the world, we need to be bold, as Srila Prabhupada showed by his own example. We must also be humble and honest enough to acknowledge the limits of our actual understanding of varanasrama's cultural manifestations, as well as the limits of our understanding of Srila Prabhupada's desires. Otherwise, we risk minimizing his significance and missing the richness of genuine spiritual culture.
OUCH IT HURTS, BUT LETS FIGURE IT OUT
One reason women really do not want to talk about this topic is because they DO find it disturbing BUT it is only by talking about it we can figure it out. That way when the GHQ, etc., use this quote against us, we will have shared idea's here and can give them some quick answers, instead of just feeling uncomfortable and changing the subject.
A devotee writes: What follows is part of the conversation in New Orleans, Aug 1, 1975. This is over 2 1/2 years after the letters prohibiting polygamy. Srila Prabhupada mentions the duty of the father is to get the daughter married. Srila Prabhupada says even the man has got 50 wives, if he is qualified, then if the father gives his daughter then his duty to properly protect his daughter and get her properly married is sovled. He has even instructed that even men over 50 can take additional wife. Then he spoke about how when the wife is pregnant she can be taken care of at her mother's house, or our temples can make one house where pregnant women can go to be taken best care of. Then he said the man can go to the next wife. After this Nityananda asks:
Nityananda: "Are you saying that our men should have more than one wife?". Prabhupad, "I have no objection".
Satsvarup: "That's a difficult proposition"
Satsvarup: "It's not allowed in this country. It's, it's illegal. It's against the law."
Prabhupad: "That is not very difficult"
Nityananda: No, it’s a matter of... No one knows who is married or unmarried, but If you have...
Prabhupada: "That is not very difficult."
Satsvarüpa: Well, the other difficulty, you brought this up several years ago, was that the men who take many wives have to be very select. Otherwise men will be attracted to join our movement for sex life, having different wives.
Prabhupada: No, no, unless our men are trained up, why you should allow to stay here and to wife. We want trained up men, not third-class picked-up. We want men who will follow the rules and regulations and fully trained up. Otherwise we don’t want. We don’t want ordinary karmis and... And if he agrees to be trained up, then we’ll take. Otherwise what is the use of bringing some useless men? He must agree to produce his own food, and work. Our rules and regulations, he must follow. Then it will be ideal community. Otherwise, if you bring from here and there some men and fill up, that is not good thing. This is a training institution, to become devotee.
Satsvarüpa: Everything we do, we don’t hide it. We show the world what we’re doing. I don’t see how we could hide that one man had many different wives.
Prabhupada: If you don’t call wife, you can have. The law allows you to keep boyfriend, girlfriend. Then the... Instead of calling "husband," call "friend." That’s all. But, er, it is risky and the man must be responsible to keep... To keep more than one wife by trained-up man is not disallowed. Brahmananda : But I think they thought that he could get it legally established, at least in the state of California.
Prabhupada: Well then go and marry there. If the state of California allows that, then they all can go to California.
Nityananda: The general public objects to that... It’s very...
Prabhupada: Public we don’t care. We... What is the public? We have got our own public here. So pub... What is the public? All rascals. They are killing cows and drinking and topless dance, bottomless dance. What is the value of this public? All rascals. I don’t give any importance to this class of public, only after sense gratification, that’s all. They have no ideals of life. They do not know what is God. What is the value of this public? Mudhas, they have been described, mudhas. You know the meaning of mudha
Devotee (1): Ass.
Here are some of the explanations I have come up with, along with some godbrothers/sisters.
1 - This is probably the most important point to me, only because it is often missed or minimized. In just about every instance where I have read Srila Prabhupada speak of women in such ways he is speaking of Varnahsrama dharma, NOT transcendental Krishna Consciousness for the initiated devotee. While we do want varnasrama-dharma, we want it done right, and most who preach it, even in ISKCON, are preaching it according to body, caste, Hinduism. Not according to Prabhupada's personal instructions on the topic.
"The social institution known as varnasrama-dharma--the institution dividing society into four divisions of social life and four occupational divisions of caste--is not meant to divide human society according to birth. Such divisions are in terms of educational qualifications. " BG 16:1 - 3, Purport
"When He (Lord Chaitanya) met Sri Ramananda Raya on the banks of the Godavari, the varnashrama-dharma followed by Hindus was mentioned by the Lord. Sri Ramananda Raya said that by following the principles of varnashrama-dharma and four orders of human life, everyone could realize transcendence. In the opinion of the Lord, the system of varnashrama-dharma is superficial only and it has very little to do with the highest realization of spiritual values." Srimad Bhagavatam, Introduction. (See full article on Varnashrama-dharma below.)
The GHQ practice varnasrama dharma in accordance to the caste system. Therefore they cannot give fair quotes. They are biased.
2-We need to talk about and make common knowledge examples of Vedic women in the scriptures who did not fit the mold and were still greatly respected. Such as Sikhandi, or from the essay, "Female Ascetics," by Satya Devi dasi
>>Somada was committed to her vows as a brahmacarini and was not interested in marriage, but wanted to have a son. Sulabha's family was unable to find a suitable husband for her, so she wandered as a mendicant practicing yoga and discussing philosophy. Vedavati, in the Himalayan forest dressed in antelope skin and let her hair become matted, practiced austerities to obtain Vishnu as her husband.<<
Here is the address to go there and read the entire essay. It is very nice and very informative!
3- In my opinion (and someone may criticise me for having one), in the above conversation Prabhupada was giving instructions for an emergency. We are not living in a barbaric society where some animal-type men are going to attack woman on a daily basis. Yes, there are some men out there like that, (there are some women out there capable of doing that too!), and sure it happens. However, not to this degree where we all have to be so fear based. Such men who advocate polygamy blow this concept of the need protection out of proportion, attempting to create an imagined fear in women and in society as an excuse to collect many females. It is rather humorous in one sense, as the very men making such claims usually can't protect her anyway. They are not big kstriya's, they are usually small brahmana's, or men who are untrained in combat and can't fight to save their life, what to speak of hers!
4- Of course, Prabhupada was worried about the women and their proper protection. He also expected the men to become much more quaified than they are, just as he had high expectations of Dallas and Vrndavana gurukulas. We all know now that ashrams, especially those run by men, resulted in MUCH sexual and physical abuse. Look at statistics. Men are more known for sexual and physical abuse than women. In the rest of the world, everyone knows it is men who have more sexual lust than women. Time to get real. Let us not put human beings, women DEVOTEES and their children, at such risk because we want to be air fairy and pretend we are more advanced than we really are. Look at what truthfully works. We must realize that polygamy will end up like the gurukula ashrama's ended up. Anyway, if a woman can find a way to protect herself, whether it fits into the GHQ's mold of Vedic or not, she is still protected and therefore once again, there is no need for polygamy.
5- Neither the GHQ or anyone is qualified to practice polygamy in this age. It is about their lust and it shows. Usually the men who think they are qualified are the *most* unqualified. The mere fact that they argue bona fide and realistic reasons that polygamy is not needed, for example #6, just proves it is only due to lust, to collect a harem, and not due to qualification at all.
6-Polygamy is based on numbers. At one time there were more women born than men. However, I doubt that is the case anymore. At least, in our temples it does not appear there are more women than men. If anything it is the reverse - more brahmacari's than brahmacarini's. In which case, there is not shortage of husbands for these girls, when they are ready to marry. Not a minute sooner. They joined this movement to serve Krishna, not men. They were given the status of brahmacarini every bit as seriously as men are given the status of brahmacari. Prabhupada was not pretending when he created the brahmacarini ashrama. Certainly in time most will marry, but MOST will marry, not just the women. The men too. Prabhupada has said this himself - that 90% of the men will marry.
7- Even with this conversation from Srila Prabhupada, the final is still left to the woman, NOT the man. If the women do not want to participate in polygamy, they can say NO and the husband must abide by this.
We also must be careful that choice is made freely. I recall when men took sanyasa in the beginning of the movement. They had to get permission from the wife first. However, so many women gave permission out of shame, guilt or religious pressure from their own husband! "You are not a good devotee if you do not give me permission." "This is what Prabhupada wants." (It is really what they wanted.) "Don't you want to go back to Godhead????!" Etc. These are mind games. Prabhupada does not play mind games, so called superior men do.
"Regarding your separating from Nandarani, nothing should be done artificially, Nandarani is no different from you. She also seeks Krishna Consciousness. Your household life is not repugnant: it is favorable. Do not separate artificially. When everyone is engaged in Krishna's service, there is no question of maya. I have got good estimation about Nandarani." SPL to Dayananda
The woman gets to make the choice and it must be made honestly, without the husband working on her, or expecting that she should be submissive and surrender unto him. In this case Prabhupada does NOT instruct her to be submissive or surrender to him. Such men find it beneath themselves to ever have to submit to the wife, but apparently Prabhupada doesn't or he would not have given women such power of choice over him. :) Successful marriages are about give and take, not just the man takes the woman gives (submits). The fact that such men can't do that is further proof that they are not humble enough to be qualified as a polygamist. Although in my personal opinion, with all the sexual abuse (not just the children, women do not report their sexual abuses!), and physical abuse that have gone on in this movement, no one is qualified and we should just focus on trying to become normal.
These are the conclusions I have come to in order to try to understand that conversation. I don't know if it helps anyone, but I hope so.
9) To take care of a family is quite a financial strain these days. Usually even with one wife and a few children, both have to work at least part-time to just have a place to live, some food and clothes. At least that is the case in the culture I live in. Most of us from this part of the world grew up with a different mind-set than what is common in a culture where the community is the main and most important factor.
Practical observation, which have become quite obvious if we look at the way we conducted the gurukula-experience or have cared for the cows. We have certainly seen failures due to immature implementations of scripture in our movement.
Some men will maybe want the polygamic-system, but when their motive for wanting it is not in tune with the original intentions of the system it will not benefit anyone but simply create more suffering. The system as a whole would mean not only that men could marry more wifes, but also that a sister who lost her husband would be welcome in the home (not as a wife to offer sex pleasures), with all her children and would be supplied for, old maybe invalid parents would be taken care of until the end of their life in the home, all wifes would be equally cared for and all children as well, one would give charity to the brahmanas, always shout out for everyone to come and eat, take care of the animals as if they were ones own children and so on and so forth. It is not a system arranged for someone's sense gratification but for taking care of the needs of all members of society. To take one part out of the system just because it fits a personal desire is like wanting half the cow, the half that gives the milk, refusing the half that needs to be fed (the elderly, children, animals, etc.). It is cheating, especially since there is many young unmarried devotee men available who have a desire to get married too, so where is the need? As a matter of fact it seems to me that we have much more men than women, at least around here?
If someone is really such a well wisher of humanity, why not facilitate for his old parents instead as a start, or for the cows, or for the many young people in our society (male) who would benefit from getting a good education or just a decent treatment. If they really that economically well to do, there are plenty of places to start improving our present system and increase the spirit of caring other than women.
10) If polygamists which to follow an instruction of Prabhupada which he has changed, let them chant 64 rounds a day, as was his first instruction to his disciples. Sixteen was only a concession, so if they are such advanced Vedic men, let them chant this many instead of this interest in so many women.
"I am very glad to learn you are chanting 48 rounds. Actually it is all right that one should chant 64 rounds, even 16 rounds, so if one is able to chant more than 16 rounds up to 64, it is very good." SPL to Indira dasi.
And remember, 16 rounds was a concession. His original instruction were 64 rounds. A man should not view himself as so advanced to take on many wives if he cannot chant 64 rounds. Now THAT is a sign advancement. The desire for many women is not a sign of advancement. Of course, I am not suggesting everyone chant 16 rounds, only these "advanced" polygamists.
11) In this modern age of transportation, cars, planes, trains, and ships, if a woman cannot find a husband in her tiny little village she is not destined to be husbandless unless a polygamist does her a big favor and takes her on as his wife. No. She can merely get in her car and travel, take a plane, a train and so on. There are devotee men everywhere, although polygamists will not like that competition. However Prabhupada had no problem with modern transportation or we would have never heard of Krishna Consciousness!
12) In the above conversation Srila Prabhupada gives the example of a married man having a girlfriend. Therefore if low class men can't control themselves and can't take satisfaction in one wife, or rahter (and more honestly) if they *won't* control themselves and go after other women, in such cases the Vedas allow such a fallen man to take on more than one woman. That example is there. However, what did Prabhupada want for *HIS* followers? The standard for his own devotees , which is very clear in the letters he wrote, was that the man *must* be a very advanced devotee first. He expected the men in this movement to make much more spiritual advancement than they did. Under the circumstances, and circumstances which will continue throughout the rest of kali yuga, men are not sufficiently advanced enough to take on more than one wife. Most are lucky if they can make one marriage workable. What does that leave us? Polygamists who are really unadvanced, totally unqualified, desiring women for the purpose of sex, exploiting the ladies and oppressing them because they have confused oppression with religion, and because that is the only way they can create the illusion of being qualified men - to keep the wife from making progress beyond his.
13) In the above conversation, in which Prabhupada is giving information on varnashrama-dharma *society* and not transcendence, we notice that he recommends California and only because one devotee suggests polygamy might be legal there. When Prabhupada says he does not care what the public thinks, he is speaking more of people than thee law. And while there seems to be an idea that temples should have housing for pregnant women to go to, which in this age will only result in men behaving irresponsibly, thus impregnating women and shipping them off at a time when they need more medical and emotional attention than usual, we see Prabhupada gives other instructions on this very same topic:
"My dear Narottamananda das, Please accept my blessings. I am in due receipt of your letter dated July 4, 1975, and have noted the contents. Regarding your taking a second wife, you cannot do this. At least you cannot stay in our temple in Vrndaban. If you want to take a second wife, then you have to leave our Vrndaban temple. Whether you can maintain them and take some job and earn? Our temples cannot support you and your two wives. You will want three, four and more. Anyway, as an American it is illegal for you to do this. We are trying to minimize sex and you are trying to increase. Please give up this idea." SPL 1975
"First let us understand that polygamy cannot be permitted in our society. Legally it is impossible and neither are there many of our devotees who are prepared to assume the responsibility for many wives." SPL, Melbourne, 10 February, 1973
Polygamists don't get to pick and choose the instructions that please their senses. They must remember the goal of an initiated devotee: to become Krishna Conscious to such a degree that they get out of the material world and Prabhupada does not have to come back and get them!
Yet they may argue due to the date of the two letters I just quoted (and obstinacy). Which brings us to number fourteen. :)
14) 1977 Srimad Bhagavatam.
TRANSLATION: Lord Ramacandra took a vow to accept only one wife and have no connection with any other women. He was a saintly king, and everything in His character was good, untinged by qualities like anger. He taught good behavior for everyone, especially for householders, in terms of varnashrama-dharma. Thus He taught the general public by His personal activities.
PURPORT: Eka-patni-vrata, accepting only one wife, was the glorious example set by Lord Ramacandra. One should not accept more than one wife. In those days, of course, people did marry more than one wife. Even Lord Ramacandra’s father accepted more wives than one. But Lord Ramacandra, as an ideal king, accepted only one wife, mother Sita. When mother Sita was kidnapped by Ravana and the Raksha's, Lord Ramacandra, as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, could have married hundreds and thousands of Sitas, but to teach us how faithful He was to His wife, He fought with Ravana and finally killed him. The Lord punished Ravana and rescued His wife to instruct men to have only one wife. Lord Ramacandra accepted only one wife and manifested sublime character, thus setting an example for householders. A householder should live according to the ideal of Lord Ramacandra, who showed how to be a perfect person. Being a householder or living with a wife and children is never condemned, provided one lives according to the regulative principles of varnashrama-dharma. Those who live in accordance with these principles, whether as householders, brahmacaris or vanaprasthas, are all equally important. SB 9.10.55
This is the instruction Prabhupada has left behind of the most importance on this topic, as his books are the law books of all mankind for the next 10,000 years. He put the highest and most important instruction on this topic, just before leaving the planet, in there.
POLYGAMISTS HAVE THE RIGHT TO TWO OR TWENTY WIVES
Polygamists claim that whether a man has 2 or 20 wives (the desire for a harem?), that it should not matter, explaining that the point is not to give more sex life to men. That may not be the point, but it IS the result, to deny it would be a lie. A man with 20 wives can enjoy one woman according to "her" time to become pregnant, only to move on to the next one a couple of nights later. Over the course of a month he has enjoyed many women! In this way he thinks he has found a loophole around the regulative principles and that he is still following his vows and is even doing everyone a favor. Nonsense.
One argument may be that women who live together have a similar lunar cycle. This is somewhat true. However, it does not let polygamists off the hook. It simply means he will be impregnating many women around the same time!
Only or mostly women figure this out. Polygamists may be trying to trick the male authorities of this movement, but the women will chime in with the truth.
They can preach what they want, as the gurukula teachers of Dallas and Vrndavana preached what they wanted in the 70s, than did something else. We know what they say and what they do don't always match. With all the molestation's of children and abuses of women we are fooling ourselves if we think we are so advanced we can practice polygamy successfully. We can't seem to get the basics straight. No man is the exception and a grandiose devotee who can handle it. Therefore one may claim it does not matter how many women men keep, even twenty, that it is not about lust but the very next thing they do is run after a young, pretty, shapely girl who they should view as their daughter instead of a simple, plain looking woman in their own age group who is more likely in need of protection than a young lady who has many skills, a lot of self-confidence and good body. Actions speak louder than words.
They should learn how to take satisfaction and not allow their minds to wander in such directions. Thus they can advance in Krishna Consciousness, not in woman consciousness.
Fifty year old man marrying many women? While maybe they CAN, that does not mean they should. It definitely is not first class. Since all the polygamists in general claim they are first class, well, first class means at 50 - take sanyasa!
What is "very difficult" is how he's going to support 50 woman and all the children he "studley" is likely to father. He would have to be a rich vaisya. Not these child-chasing polygamy-mongers. Srila Prabhupada has said that in Kali-Yuga, a man is considered to be really great if he can even maintain ONE wife and a few children. (Anonymous contribution)
"We recommend our students not to have illicit sex. We don't stop sex, but regulate. . . . What is the difficulty? No illicit sex means don't be cats and dogs. Be married man and have one wife, one husband, and be satisfied." SP 1971
POLYGAMISTS AND HEALTH CARE
For that matter, most polygamists do not have very old children. They are not yet teens, so the majority of polygamists do not have an real understanding of the very large bills that are about to come their way when their children become teenagers! In addition, they are not fully aware of the need for health care insurance (or a sufficient savings tucked away for it), dental care, chiropractic services may one day be needed, emergencies such as hospitalization and so on. They think putting food on the table, clothes on everyone's back and a couple other basics are all they have to do in order to take care of wife and children. They are in illusion.
What will polygamists do if someone in their family comes down with a disease? What is a child is born with Downs Syndrome or various congenital birth defects? Etc. Most polygamists are ignorant about health. Have they stopped to think long enough about the risks that exist in the material world and how much it will cost them?! No, they think they have it all figured out. We all did when we were young. Some of us grew up, some stayed thirteen. They're not growing older, they're just growing old. <g>
POLYGAMISTS AND GURUKULA
Polygamists try to avoid sending their children to gurukula in favor of teaching them at home. I am all for home schooling IF it meets up to the state standards (the children must be tested regularly), and IF they assure their child enough social interaction with other children their age in order to learn relationship skills, to have friends and to be psychologically balanced.
In addition, they have GOT to start sending their girls to school! (Isn't it illegal to refuse a child education, especially based on gender?) Girls need an education too, not just cooking and cleaning. Join the real world, they could be our future preachers so over protection will not teach them sufficient relationship skills to assist such preaching. For that matter, over protection usually backfires and the child goes wild when they are eighteen, if not sooner. Getting them *married off* at a young age, in order to avoid such problems, usually results in divorce and one angry gurukul!
I can already hear them saying, "Not MY child, I won't ALLOW that." hahaha Didn't we all speak like this also? Polygamists, take some advice from those who have been there, done that, and avoid future problems you cannot see yet. Those who think they are better than the other devotees may be very sorry one day they did not listen. Prabhupada made our gurukula's for both genders, so no more saving money at the expense of daughters. Find one that is nonabusive and a day time school. Most are now anyway, although they will have to be willing to get involved. Than, pay that gurukula fee for girls too!
Of course, another reason polygamists do not want to send their children, either gender, to gurukula is because polygamy is not accepted by society and they will have to associate with temple authorities (polygamists have an authority problem) and devotees who are against such an activity. And what parent would let their child go to play at the home of a polygamist? Especially if an older *sister* had to pick them up at times? Polygamists rather avoid all of this, hold on to their sense gratification and deny their children a good education and friends.
I suggest kali yuga polygamists put their money where their mouth is and send their children to day time gurukula, get good health coverage, including dental and opthamologist, protect a cow or two (even if they can't do it in their backyard they can join the "adopt a cow" program), use any other money to feed the hungry and homeless with prasadam, buy some books and give them away to anyone for free, and so on. If they really are spending their money to spread Krishna Consciousness, all those funds they thought they had to support another wife (and her another and another), is gone. Why? Because they were using their money for their sense gratification instead of thinking of ways to use it in Krishna's service.
OLD MEN, YOUNG GIRLS AND POLYGAMY
These men who are running after women 20-years younger than they are, do they not realize that the chances of his death happening prior to hers are very big? As much as 20-years before her. So that could leave a 40 or 45-year-old woman without a husband. If they are being honest about how they want to marry young women to protect women, why are these men not even taking their death into consideration as a possibility? Why would they be so willing to leave a 45-year-old woman husbandless and unprotected if having a husband to protect her is so important? Since they will not allow her to remarry, this is a very selfish situation to put her in. (Before anyone complains, I am not advocating remarriage, just making a point.)
What happens to a young girl who marries an older man? Chances are high that he will die long before she does. She may be in her forties when he passes on. From their own philosophy that woman is to be protected all her life by man, she is now left unprotected. Since such men do not accept remarriage, except for themselves, she must remain alone the rest of her life. (This is not advocating remarriage, just making a point.) It is selfish for older men to want young girl.
There is also a large generation gap which makes it more difficult to get along than they realize. She usually sees him as her father instead of husband, even if he succeeded in marrying her. Of course, in reality it is highly unlikely that a young girl will marry an old man anyway. This is their male fantasy, further proof that they are living in an unrealistic world of illusion, as well as further proof that they are on the bodily concept, having similar fantasies as the nondevotee man! YUCK!
Another aspect of getting old men desiring to marry young girls could be, a sort of "old age security" (Anonymous contribution)
POLYGAMISTS WANT VIRGIN GIRLS
Polygamists actually believe they have the *right* to virgin girls. They are claiming that it is Vedic and that it is about purity. First, impersonalists are Vedic, mayavadi's are Vedic, even the Kama-Sutra is Vedic. While we want Vedic, we only want the highest form of Vedic that leads us to Krishna, not to man (or woman). Secondly, the purity they are speaking of is only purity of the body. Cleanliness. Maybe they are afraid of catching STDs? (Which indicates what they want from a woman themselves!) Anyway, if a woman lost her virginity but then joined the movement, became very pure spiritually, she would still not meet up to their standards of purity, even if she became a pure devotee.
Polygamists state the girls must have never had a *boyfriend.* These nonvirgin men want virgin girls and try to pass it off as religious. Let the virgin girls have virgin men, not that a polygamist does not want a used girl yet he is a used man. According to their own standard, he is not pure.
I am disgusted with rascals who try to pass their lust off on God, guru and scripture. Everyone has lust. However polygamists have abnormal amounts of lust and try to justify it as religious. That scares me. Or rather what scares me is that it goes unchecked by devotees, therefore it grows. I am not asking anyone to control them but they could take legal action to keep them away, similar to what they would do with a child molester. Some may say it is not *exactly* the same as child molestation since the girls are not children. Well, it runs a close second as these girls are still unwilling victims. It can become just as serious if left unchecked. (Will the girls act out when they are older? Something else? Will polygamists import a few wives? Is that OK with us? Do we want guests, or ourselves, to see that at the temple? What if polygamists keep them at home? Will we tolerate that? Will we continue to ignore what this is doing to their children?)
Although gurukula girls aren't children they are still unformed women, not fully adults. Maybe it now would fit in the category of some form of adult sexual abuse. Maybe a little of both. At least emotionally. I know of gurukuli's who feel they can't step foot in the temple anymore because they see the face of their abuser. It is too disturbing to see them getting away with the appearance of a good devotee. Similarly, why should these girls have to look at a man in the temple every day who they know would love to sleep with them?!!! Simply because we know they will not go for it does not make it acceptable nor sufficient protection. They should be able to live in a peaceful environment where they do not feel some older man is giving them the eye.
While one may argue there will always be some man who lusts after them, "get use to it," the arguments stand that:
1-Any man exhibiting or known for abnormal lust after girls too young for himself, or after too many women (polygamists) should first be informed it is not acceptable AND will not be tolerated. Then if they persist, they should not be allowed to come to the temple. (I usually don't go for refusing someone access to the temple but in this case I will make an exception.) Protection requires work and involvement. It is time the children were protected instead of the adults who are of an exploitive nature.
2-Any devotee who KNOWN for their obsession with polygamy and /or interest with young virgin gurukula girls must be dealt with strongly by temple authorities, not wishy-washy. Something should be done immediately and it should not be a mere slap on the hand.
3-The temple is in part, the home of these gurukula girls. They should be able to feel comfortable and safe. I know when I was a young teen if weird men lusted after me I could always go home and feel safe.
The temple should not be used by such men as a pickup place for chicks, if you will pardon the expression. While it is one thing for single devotees of appropriate age to meet and do things the right way, or to make it more clear - a sane way - it is not appropriate for an older man to ask to marry a young girls! The girls should be able to feel comfortable when they go to the temple, and we all know that when living in the gurukula ashrama that the temple is somewhat home. They are there a lot.
We have no idea what the future can result in if they are allowed to continue down this path. These girls probably see them as a dirty old men. It is not doing polygamists or the girls any favors by remaining silent.
Please do not misunderstand. I don't have a major problem with age. My rule of thumb is, if you could have bought this person into the world or close to it, than you should not be looking at them or thinking of them as a potential spouse. If anything, you should think of and look at them as daughter. A man of fathers age should not go after a girl of daughters age. Bas. It applies to women as well, though that happens less. In kali-yuga it is totally disgraceful for a man who is of the age where he could have fathered a girl to ask to marry her. And let's be realistic. Marriages in kali-yuga do better when the age gap is not too wide.
Often men who are feeling impure go after many young women thinking they can take purify from them. However, women are not to be their guru to help one gain purity, Prabhupada is. While they say woman can't be guru, that is exactly who they turn to. What one lacks as a human beings lack, he often looks for in other human beings to fill that gap. This will lead to disappointment as in time they see the women are no longer perfect and the fantasy leaves, reality sets in. Then the very same woman who was glorified as *pure* will next be criticized, thus creating a cycle of seeking purity from woman to woman, hankering and lamenting, and continuing to blame her when she is less than perfect, when she is not a pure devotee. Over and over I say this: take shelter of Srila Prabhupada to fulfill such neediness. That will turn it around.
Teenage pregnancies have a higher risk ending up in miscarriage than adult pregnancies. The *girls* are too small and it could result in painful complications even if they manage to carry the baby to full term. Therefore these girls the polygamists want to marry are older CHILDREN. They are in the transitional stage between child and adult, but they still are OLDER CHILDREN, not fully formed women. Physically nor emotionally, they are not fully formed. And the physical comes first! The emotional takes quite a while to catch up. So one wonders if these polygamists actually want a CHILD to control, to have an immature relationship with.
While polygamists are busy screaming *Vedic, Vedic* they do not stop to do a reality check and see what is going on in THIS age. In kali yuga girls grow up slow.
Had these men stopped *selectively* studying the scriptures to justify their lust, they might have noticed the difference between the girls in kali yuga and the girls in the other ages they are reading about. But they did not. Why? It interfered with their sense gratification. It is easier to have a relationship with a child than a woman. A grown up woman asks, "Did you pay the rent? Our baby needs diapers. The gurukula teacher wants to talk to you about Krishna das." Polygamists much rather have a *playful* relationship with a teenager than an adult relationship, one of responsibility, with a woman.
The reason that they don't go after elder devotee women is the same reason why in many patriarchical societies women past child bearing age are regarded with antipathy - because they fear them. The reason that they fear them is that such women are wise. They've spent all of their lives as participating members of society and it is very, very difficult to pull the wool over their eyes, which they can do with a young girl. Older women have had has fathers, brothers, husbands, sons and thus they are well acquainted with the men whom they have reared, nurtured and nursed. They are consulted by their daughters and their granddaughters who can also learn what is going on by listening to them. No, polygamists do not want such intelligent, aware women who might show them up or catch them in their maya. They want virgins who are innocent and ignorant (that is said with respect to the girls). She is too sweet and trusting to believe how cruel the world, or some men, can get. (Anonymous contribution)
Of course the reality is, no teenage girl or young adult woman would marry an older man. These are simply male fantasies, having nothing to do with spiritual life and everything to do with sexual life, along with the subtle sex of being adored by a young teen. The gurukula, etc., girls just laugh at them, viewing them as dirty old men and fools.
Why these so called Vedic men do not approach the father of these underaged girls they want to marry, but instead go to the temple authorities? It would be Vedic to go to the father. We all know why. Because the father will want to protect his daughter from such a nonsense maya man and may either punch him or take legal action!
Kali-yuga polygamy is the closest thing to sanctioned abuse of women. On the other hand politics and power is closely related. Men who want these "harems" (let's be honest) are looking for legalized rape (of 12 - 17 year olds). Only if they are married to these young girls can they "legally, within our society" have sex, otherwise it's considered statutory rape, right? So we see the maneuvering going on on the legal side and it does have political strains. Men would have power and control over more than one woman. That is increased power in a society that already keeps women in a powerless position in many areas. (Anonymous contribution)
What does the law of Manu, the scripture many polygamists follow, say about rape? What kind of punishment is to be enforced on the abuser? Since these men so much want to return society to a Vedic lifestyle, than they should receive the Vedic punishment for rape which is what would be going on if they were able to get virgin girls or if they have many women to facilite their desires, regardless of what they claim. If you don't know what that punishment is, ask a senior devotee. It makes karmi jail look good!
Some devotees remind me that Srila Prabhupada's older sisters were married at 9, 11, and 12 years respectively when they were married, that Srila Prabhupada's mother threatened to drown herself in a river due to the fact that her 12 year old daughter was not married, and that Srila Prabhupada's wife was 14 years old when their first child was born.
I hear this sort of thing often. First what most older (too old) men forget or conveniently omit is that the girls would spend some years until puberty before joining their husbands. This means that they would remain in their Vaisnava home for a decent period of time. Later they would go to the home of his PARENTS, though in kali-yuga we have found, more often than not, she does not feel welcomed or at home with his parents so we don't want to put our girls in anxiety for a man's pleasure. He will have to wait until she is older. But let's take this further. We need to remember that what Prabhupada and his sister did went on nearly 100 years ago and the kali-yuga body as well as consciousness, has changed. Girls grow up slower, in addition to which, as you can see from the factual information below, it is more dangerous currently than it was 100 years ago. We have more air and water pollution now, toxic wastes are much more abundant, the food crops are no longer pure and I have heard that India uses pesticides to grow some of their foods that are illegal to use in America, and so on. Ingesting all this works against us in two ways. 1-It shortens the life span. 2-It causes children to grow up more slowly. Then we must take into consideration that kali-yuga is progressing rapidly, which increases all of the above as well adds problems of it's own.
To take it a step further, I always remind people that we cannot imitate what great Vaisnavi's and Srila Prabhupada did. I also find it interesting that some men want to imitate Prabhupada when it serves their sexuality but when it comes to chanting 64 rounds a day, etc., suddenly they do not quote what Prabhupada did, demanding it for themselves.
Lets look at some scientific research for THIS age from the March of Dimes.
"Because of the risks involved in teen pregnancy to both mother and child, the March of Dimes strongly urges teenage girls to delay childbearing.
Facts You Should Know About Teenage Pregnancy
While teenage birth rates in this country remain high, they have gradually fallen since 1991. This drop follows substantial increases during the late 1980s. Recent statistics show that teen birth rates remain higher than they were during the early to mid-1980s, and continue to exceed those in most developed countries. High teen birth rates are an important concern because teen mothers and their babies face increased risks to their health.
•Studies show that teens are less likely than older women to gain an adequate amount of weight during pregnancy (25 to 35 pounds is recommended for women of normal weight), which increases the risk of having a low-birthweight baby.
•A teenage mother is more at risk of pregnancy complications such as premature labor, anemia, high blood pressure, and placental problems. These risks are even greater for teens who are under 15 years old.
A baby born to a teenage mother is more at risk than a baby born to an older mother.
•In 1995, 9.3 percent of mothers ages 15 to 19 years had a low-birthweight baby (under 5.5 pounds), compared to 7.3 percent for mothers of all ages. The risk is highest for the youngest mothers: 13.5 percent of mothers under 15 years of age had a low-birthweight baby in 1995.
•Low-birthweight babies may have organs that are not fully developed. This can lead to lung problems such as respiratory distress syndrome, or bleeding in the brain.
•Low-birthweight babies are 40 times more likely to die in their first month of life than normal-weight babies.
Life is often difficult for a teenage mother and her child.
•Teens may not have developed good parenting skills, or have social support systems to help them deal with the stress of raising an infant.
The March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation"
I wish to take add some points. One doctor, a plastic surgeon, refuses to do certain types of plastic surgery on teenager girls who are not at least 19 years of age. Why? He stated the reason as teenage girls under that age do not have enough adult body tissue! If they do not have enough adult tissue, what does that make them? A CHILD. A child in transition, but still a child.
We should also note that in our scriptures we read about the big thighs of a woman, her large size. It is American taste, not Vedic, that is causing these men to lust after unformed girls who are not really *women.* They are girls.
Please do not misunderstand. I have no problem if someone wants to push the envelope *slightly* and finds an *appropriate* and *young* qualified man for their daughter of 16 years who *she* has feelings for, and betrroth her. This requires a long enough engagement period where she lives home with her parents during it, and is married two-three years later, minimum. That will give her time to decide if this is what she really wants to do for the rest of her life or if she wants to go and hang with her friends. While such men may not like giving her that choice, the reality is that we do not have a Vedic society and it is unfair to expect thes girls to be pure devotees when we are not. If we want them to do like this, we better FIRST create a society where their friends are all doing like this as well. Unti that happes we will have to work with what we have. Therefore it is better to discover if they want to do what other teens do now rather than discover it five years and two children into the marriage.
And lets not forget, so many rushed marriages in this movement ended in divorce. Hurried marriages of the young may also put them at risk of the facts, above. I am sure there are exceptions, but why take chances?
However, worst of all is old men running after young girl when he really should be taking sanyasa or varnaprastha! Polygamists are an embarrassment to the movement and an insult to all women, young or old. It also is just downright disgusting that men cannot or will not get their senses under control starting with the mind, and instead of viewing these young girls as daughters, they view them as partners. That is shameful to say the least. In a movement that advocates celibacy, THIS is what's on their mind??? There is nothing moral about that. It is a disgrace. Such men need to realize that if a young girl is showing them some attention or friendliness it is because she sees "Daddy, " or "Uncle" and is not flirting with him. Older men need to stop flattering themselves.
I will add, it still remains true that is most cases, due to kali yuga and a lack of sufficient transcendental Krishna Consciousness societies, along with other reasons, girls are not truthfully ready to get married at such a young age even if they say they are. They are more immature than meets the eye and haven't got a clue about what is going on. They are usually not ready for the responsibilities required of a *woman.* For that matter, it often leads to divorce, as such marriages are short lived. We have seen the girls discover they have missed much of their childhood - teen years - so instead of behaving like a wife or mother, they try to do all the things they missed out on. Why push the envelope? Let them grow up.
POLYGAMY AND ABUSE
Polygamists claim that they automatically do not abuse simply based merely on the fact that they are *polygamists.* Such a blind statement reveals they do not know what abuse is, therefore one cannot avoid what they do not know. Abuse is abuse and does not favor wealth, position, race, creed, color or religion. Matter of fact, due to the increased stress level the risk may be higher. Polygamists do not respect women, regardless of what they say, because no one who views someone as inferior is respecting that person. This also increases the risk of abuse. Both the wife AND the children are under more stress.
Teenage pregnancies have all ready been mentioned and should not be forgotten, as old men who hold on to the desire to marry teenagers (older children) and impregnating them ........ are potential abusers. One may argue that a teenage boy may do this. Yes, he may. However, he is young, uneducated on this topic, controlled by his newly raging hormones, and foolish or naive. If an adult man does this it is clearly not in the same category. By his age, male hormones should have calmed down, he should have overcome such weaknesses or at least gained a little intelligence and especially more self control than a teenage boy. One cannot have the privileges of an adult but maintain the desire to behave like a boy.
To take it further, polygamists state they will not divorce their wives or abandon their children. It is those men who, if they take additional wives, are doing society a great boon, they claim.
They are doing society a great boon? A favor? So much for humility.
Not only will they not abandon women or children, they will own them, like a piece of property, even (and especially) if abuse is going on. They will not abandon them because they are collectors of women just like some men like to collect fancy cars or anything else that resembles sex and power. The child might be kept in an attempt to force the wife to stay with him. They can preach all the philosophy they want, but we know what they do. They have obsessive addictive control-freak consciousness.
Of course if we look deeper we see that polygamists most certainly HAVE abandoned their wife and their children in the long run. Ask any woman who has been in such a relationship. Facts speak louder than lip service. Polygamists create messes the rest of our ISKCON society has to try and clean up.
The First Wife Is Abused
The first wife has always been treated poorly by the polygamists and the new wife wast treated like a gem. The new wife is given many new saris, new bangles, gifts, while the old wife does not. If there is a fight between the first wife and the new one, the husband ALWAYS sides with his new treasure. There is not harmony at all, but favoritism. They are not treated equal. What does Prabhupada have to say about treating them equal?
"According to Vedic *culture,* although polygamy is allowed, none of ones wives should be ill-treated. In other words, one may take many wives only if he is able to to satisfy all of them equally as an ideal householder; otherwise it is NOT allowed." KB Ch 59, Talks Between Krishna and Rukmini
Polygamists may claim that they will be able to follow all of this and treat their many wives equally, but no one in all of ISKCON has ever been successful, so what makes them so arrogant as to think they can? Instead of taking on such a responsibility, they make excuses that if she can not live in harmony and get along it is HER problem. Well, that is not what Prabhupada says in the above verse. It is HIS problem. There is not one polygamous marriage that worked in this movement, not ONE, yet they think they are better than their godbrothers?!
Of course, when the newness of the second wife wears off he will have to run after wife number three, four, etc.
What polygamists keep trying to downplay is that Prabhupada DID say that a man cannot take another wife if his current wife does not agree. He did not mean the type of agreement that many men used on to women in the 70s when they took sanyasa and abandoned them. Many such women agreed only because these men *convinced* them it is what *Prabhupada* wanted, or that she is in maya if she dares to disagree. All these mind games (psychological ploys) ended with horrible results. I suspect that is the type of *agreement* such men are getting from their wife who agree to let them practice polygamy.
Ask any women, should she feels comfortable enough to trust you and tell you the truth: the only time women give their husband permission to take another wife is when they want him to leave her alone at night and stop yelling or bossing her around during the day. That is a fact!
Switching roles by asking her permission is an insult to his masculinity. (What happened to these advanced Vedic men? They think they are their bodies.) In Krishna Consciousness we are all female. Everyone should learn how to be submissive from time to time or their spiritual advancement will be thwarted.
Such men can't imagine being submissive to the wife , due to the male ego (bodily concept), and letting her make a choice even though Prabhupada himself gave the ladies that power. He was not the playing mind game, "Oh, I ask you and than you are SUPPOSED to say yes." No, it is devotees who use such mental manipulation.
I know of a woman who put a chair through a window because her husband had taken on a second wife, and she had given permission. Talk to any women in this movement who partook in polygamy and you will not hear nice stories of male protection as the current polygamists are trying to convince you, but of horror. Another women tried to commit suicide! She also gave permission. Yet these polygamists are so selfish they still want to propagate this philosophy which serves their senses, at the expense of a women, at the expense of their own wife. Not woman protection at all, but exploitation.
."Lord Krishna is the world teacher; therefore even though he had no need for a wife, He expanded himself into as many forms as He had wives" Krishna Book, ch 59, Talks Between Krishna and Rukmini
While polygamists have used the example that Krishna had many wives, therefore they think they should also be allowed to have many wives, they conveniently omit this point, that Krishna had the ability to expand Himsellf per wife. We see Krishna did not make the women share Him as one husband. Matter of fact, they all lived separately with their own Krishna, their own husband, and different activities went on in each household simultaneously, and very opulently! Where is the money of the kali yuga polygamists to provide like this? They expect the wife to live a very renounced life while he has much opulence. And where is their ability to expand themselves? <g> Even if some mystic yogi could, well, taking on many women removes him from the post of *yogi.* Another point polygamists conveniently omit is, that they are not God. God can have many women, many wives, kali-yuga polygamists cannot.
Polygamists have called women who divorce and remarry, prostitutes. However, these polygamists who cannot remain faithful and loyal to one woman, cannot control their senses but let their eyes wander toward other women, are clearly in no condition to criticise the ladies! If they call such women whores than they, in truth, are speculating and assuming their own less pure desires are hers.
First, such men usually do not see that they contributed to the divorce. How? While there are many ways, lets look at the most common.
1-She tells him they are having trouble getting along, lets go to a marriage counselor. He becomes angry, refuses to go, and over a period of time she can't live with his anartha's anymore, the one he thinks he does not have - thus divorce. After all, he believes it is always the wife's fault and he is fine, he has no anarthas (which include personality quirks!), so if anyone needs a counselor, it is her. Then these *pure devotees* <g> wonder why they end up divorced.
2-She tell him they are having trouble getting along, lets live in separate apartments. He becomes angry, worries about how it will *look,* refuses to do it, the fighting increases and she files for divorce. I personally have known couples who moved separate and not only saved the marriage, but improved the relationship! For that matter, it is Vedic, so all these quasi Vedic polygamists should stop behaving conveniently Vedic. Of course, if it is a woman they no longer like, they will be quick to move separately and call it Vedic. The idea is to use the separation as a time work on the relationship, to come together at times of the day that are convenient and more peaceful for everyone involved and not as an excuse to run away.
3-They ignore the marriage, think it should function on automatic pilot, when the wife FINALLY expresses some unhappiness, he get angry. (Notice, his usual response is one of anger. A emotion he does not have under control and the only one a *man* in this movement is allowed to feel, as it is considered a *male* emotion.) It is her fault again, and he just doesn't know what this *fickle* or *emotional* woman wants from him. Thus, the man has no relationship skills, hasn't a clue how to psychologically take care of a woman in this age and in the real world, confuses love with lust and chastises her, so after a period of years of her living with an impersonalist who thinks he is a great devotee she becomes tired of living with Mr. Machines - a man who is emotionally absent and passing the buck about his inability to be personally present down to her as *too emotional.* As one gentleman put it in a letter to me:
>>As for women being more emotional I believe that is a manner of xpression, men are brought up to have "poker faces" beneath which seething eddies of emotion rage. It's not that women have more, it's that women show more. ~Dhruv "<<
I have to agree. I have seen men gossiping, I have seen men wasting time in fickleness, I have seen men doing all the the so called emotional activities of women. It is not that men do not have these emotions, only that they have not been made acceptable in a macho society that is based more on the body than the spirit, as we all know the spirit is female by nature and must practice submission to a degree in order to get use to it, in order to become purified. But such men do not believe they are to be submissive, only the wife. Thus divorce as well as a messed up society. It is easier for such men to claim she is being *emotional* so he can continue to hide his emotions, won't have to deal with hers, and thus we have a society of men in denial. Denial does not go away. If it is not corrected in this life we just may have to come back to get purified and fix it!
4-Men are told that if they are feeling lusty they should get a wife. This is one of the WORST reasons to marry. If one marries for sex it will end up in divorce. And now we see so many divorces! This preaching in the brahmacari ashrama must stop. Also, it is not the preaching that goes on in the brahmacarini ashrama at all! So if you start a marriage where two people are not on the same page, there are going to be great problems. A man should marry a woman because he likes her as a *person,* likes her spiritually, knows who she is and is open and honest to let her see who he is. As vulnerable as this may make a man feel, it is the way a real marriage works and is workable.
5-I read where one polygamyst claimed the cause of most divorces was an affair, therefore if polygamy was accepted there would be no more affairs, no more divorce. (Whatever happeend to sense control and not letting their lusty eyes wander? Anyway...) The truth is, most divorce is the result of abuse, be it physical, emotional, sexual (polygamy included), or spiritual. Although technically all abuse is spiritual abuse. I have seen men criticize their ex-wife for leaving their so-called God given husband, only to find out the husband has beat her. There are others who have abused their wife in a variety of ways, then passed the buck and blamed her for leaving. Neglect is also a cause of divorce. When the children are not properly taken care of (which includes medical) or the wife is ignored and treated like their computer, etc. Therefore if men want women to stay (and of course it works for either gender, but that has not been the problem), then men must learn to stop justifying their abuse or blaming it on God or religion. Basically, men *must* give up the belief system that they can do whatever they want to their wife and she must stay. THAT is what is irreligious and not a woman divorcing an abusive and therefore maya nonsense man. This is not to justifiy every divorce, but to point out that it is not all the woman's fault, as these type of men (and not all men) like to claim. Also, the above offers some insight that can lead to ideas which, if one takes action to correct what they are doing, they can avoid a divorce. See a counselor, read relationship books, something. But doing nothing and blaming it on the women is irresponsibile maya nonsense. After all, we also have to realize that divorce is the result of anarthas that come to the surface as the result of living in an *ashrama,* the grhasta ashrama, and the who is so use to big powerful position in that family, a position where he is nevr wrong, such a man does not want to admit to them, what to speak of deal with them - thus divorce or a miserable wife. Again I say women can have this problem too but it has not been the way things have happened in our movement. Women stay or tolerate a lot before they go, men leave. And that has been the preaching, to focus on the wife and how SHE caused the divorce. Therefore it is time to look at the other points of view.
All of the above is not to put all the blame on men who end up divorced, simply that this is what has happened so far, putting all the blame on women who get divorced , calling them prostitutes and whores. Therefore the above is is needed to give evidence that it is not always the woman's fault.
How did Prabhupada view and treat women who divorced?
Kausalya had divorced and was getting ready to remarry soon.
Srila Prabhupada: "My special blessings for Palika and Kausalya prabhus who are doing so much for our Lord and they must bespecifically blessed to go back home, back to Godhead without any delayfor waiting for the next life. Thank them very much on my behalf."
Here we see that not only does Prabhupada NOT see Mother Kausalya as a prostitute, but gave her his blessings!
Again:. "Now Madhavananda and his wife have arrived. Kausalya is an expert Deity worshiper and an important hand in our movement, so she and Yamuna, two sisters can be very useful in Deity worship there. Keep Kausalya comfortable and she can be a great help."
Srila Prabhupada does not recommend prostitues to be pujari! He obviously considered Kausalya to be a brahmana regardless of the fact that she had divorced her first husband and remarried another man.
This is not said to make divorce popular, just to develop a more realistic understanding of kali yuga, especially when a husband falls in big (not little) maya, and any type of abuse is acutally spiriutal abuse - thus maya.
Certainly Srila Prabhupada preached against divorce, but sometimes life does not go the way we want it to. So, are we to condemn someone to the eternal hell fire because of that? Prabhupada didn't. Instead, we should follow Srila Prabhupada's example and help folks that are stuck (yes, I say stuck) with this kind of *problem*. It is a *problem* not something women want. After all, divorce is not the cause but the result. The result of abuse, former problems, neglected children, former maya that the wife can't put up with anymore.
Better to focus on a persons Krishna Consciousness rather than fault finding with them during this age of kali when life can be so backwards and hard. There must be compassion, mercy and especially, understanding.
Krishna Consciousness can be practiced by any person in any situation.
POLYGAMY IS AN AFFAIR AND A DISGUISED DIVORCE
A man wrote a post stating that affairs are the biggest cause of divorce and therefore polygamy would stop this problem. Hey, here is a better way to stop the problem - men should stop being THAT lusty to want an affair in the first place, practice sense control and give up sex desire. If the Christians (the good ones) can control themselves and remain loyal to one women it is pretty sad that our some of own men can't or won't. Especially initiated devotees!
Also, what these lusty men forget is that Prabhupada himself said that the wife has to give her permission for him to take another wife, and in most cases, and if she is allowed to be honest, they are never going to get that permission. So these men are living mentally in adult Disneyland and should give up male fantasies, be happy with the one women they have, if theyare lucky enough to have even one as most women will not marry a polygamist and oddly enough, these men end up alone! Well, that is where greed and lust gets one.
To take it futher, in order to put an end to extra-marital affairs they should try to give up sex desire all together.
And especially they should stop trying to convince us that their desire for polygamy has has nothing or very little to do with their sex desire, before they make themselves the laughing stock of ISKCON. No one believes them because it simply is not true. After all, if polygamy was all they claim it was, at least a few women would be open to it. But do we hear women spreading the philosophy of polygamy? No. Only or mostly men. Why? Sex desire. They should stop trying to pretend otherwise. Polygamy is just a glorified affair.
While kali-yuga polygamist claim that divorce will end when they are able to practice polygamy actively, what is actually going on is disguised divorced. It is common knowledge when wife number two is taken in, wife number one is no longer treated right. The new, exciting woman is treated like a jewel. The first wife may even end up abused, at least emotionally, while the new woman is spoiled. Even financially, wife number one gets very little or goes without; wife number two is given new saris, new golden bangles, all types of gifts. If there is a disagreement it is the new wife the husband sides with. The emotional bond is with his new treasure. These men keep the first wife around so it will look good, but in truth they do not want her anymore. She is kept for the sake of appearances, or at best because he is entangled with children, but she ends up miserable.
I am not advocating divorce. Simply that it is more honest than men who pretend they are not divorcing yet keep a woman to ruin her life while he runs after and collects other women to enjoy his. Better not to divorce and not to take on more than one wife, as well as look within to see what contribution he is offering toward her unhappiness, or rather, what he can do to improve the relationship he is all ready in. Has he been ignoring the marriage or her needs, passing them off as fickle, feminine or stupid? Because in reality, polygamists are running away from a relationship they are not happy in..
Kali yuga polygamy is not polygamy. It's bigamy.
POLYGAMISTS ARE SAVING WOMEN FROM ENDING UP HUSBANDLESS
Basically, no woman has trouble finding a husband if enough time is allotted her. That is an illusion polygamist wish to put us in. Probably because these MEN have trouble finding a wife, due to their lack of real qualifications, thereby assuming women have the same problem. They need to face the truth - women just don't like them!
If protection is honestly their concern maybe we need to issue them a challenge: Try to identify women who have unsuccessfully tried to find a husband, women who are not "competitive" on the "marriage market" Let them prove this. Otherwise it is just talk and talk is cheap. (Anonymous contribution)
As previously mentioned, in this modern age of planes and trains, if a woman cannot find a qualified sane man in her little town or village, she can hop in her car and move elsewhere to find one.
The fact is, every female, sooner or later gets married if that is what she wants. The few that don't, do not want marriage. Is it so hard to believe that some women want to remain brahmacarini yet we believe men can desire to remain brahmacari and are good devotees for it? Women too can have such a desire and they too are just as good of a devotee for it. Anyway, notice the ADULT brahmacarini ashrama is not so much approached for marriage by these men. While both are wrong, one is less of an offense than the other. Nevertheless, let us make sure to protect ALL the women taking shelter at our temples, gurukuli's or adults.
There are smaller numbers of women joining the movement, so once again, polygamy is not needed. With the preaching of male superiority, there will continue to be lesser numbers of women joining. The intelligent class of ladies will not go along with such things. While some men criticize that not enough ladies join due to their so-called lesser qualities, they do not realize that it is this sexist bodily concept preaching (a lesser quality) that keeps them away. Not Krishna. Women have big hearts and are by nature attracted to God. It is only maya nonsense attitudes against women, misogyny, often disguised as protection when it is not, that chases large numbers of them away. Prabhupada wanted a preaching movement with many joining, not a polygamist's movement.
POLYGAMISTS ARE SAVING WOMEN FROM BECOMING PROSTITUTES
One of their arguments is that if man does not marry many women than such men are helping those women to become prostitutes. What nonsense! Such excusism is laughable. They really think women can't control themselves and are going to turn into prostitutes if they don't do the ladies a favor and have sex with them? (Sounds more like projection and wishful thinking.)
While such polygamists claim they are protecting women and doing society a favor, the only one they are dong a *favor* for is themselves, as we see what they say does not match what they do. They do not run after the older, plain looking woman in their own age group. They want virgins! Polygamy is propagated by selfish men filled with lust, who like to claim they are saving women from becoming prostitutes (as if women just can't control themselves!), but in reality it is such men who can't control themselves. They are the prostitutes. They run after the shapely, pretty, young girls who will have no problem finding a good husband.
What needs to be realized is that a man can be a prostitute also. There are plenty of devotees in our movement who simply can´t follow all the regulative principles. That I can accept, but this polygamy business is simply a trick to make it look Krishna conscious , "Vedic." It is actually an offense to the word Vedic, since they are not being honest about their lust. Prostitution has existed in every society. Prabhupada said it was for men who couldn´t control themselves. Why do they want to ruin the lives of the women devotees simply to protect their "good" image? Let them go to the prostitutes and stop pretending to be something that are not.
"According to scriptural injunctions, one is forbidden to engage with any woman other than ones wife. All other women are to be considered as one's mother. But in spite of such injunctions, a man is still inclined to have sex relationships with other women. BG 3.34
Here we see that men can have the prostitute mentality they are so fast to blame women for. They should stop viewing all other women as potential partners and instead see them as mother, not just the married woman as mother, but ALL other women. In other words, the single, young, pretty, available virgin girls. See them as mother, or if one is older man, as daughter, but never as potential wife!
We have seen such polygamist use negative and insulting terms about DEVOTEE women. Although most likely can't believe there are pious, good nondevotee women too, because they view female birth as lower sinful birth. Therefore, let us offer a little balance to these men who think they are more pure, less lusty and automatically not sudra because they are a man.
In one purport where Prabhupada is speaking of varnashrama-dharma (BG 1.40), is a verse that women don't like to look at but should because as one reds on, it offers information on men which has been minimized by polygamists or those who believe they are superior simply because they are male. At first, Prabhupada speaks of women , and please be VERY aware that he is speaking in reference to varnashrama-dharma, or materialistic women, or nondevotee women who are not pious, uneducated women, women who are not practicing the sense control of yoga, not his disciples, women under the bodily concept of life, and other similar points - how these women are prone to degradation. That aspect has been clarified and covered in other places on this web page so I will not go into it here. I wish to point out something polygamists may hide from you or try to rationalize it away. The last line of that verse. It certainly does not present male birth in the heir they wish us to see them in, as faultless, where all else is the fault of the women. Please read that last line, as they are likely to leave that out.
"Irresponsible men also provoke adultery in society and thus unwanted children flood the human race at the risk of WAR and pestilence." BG 1.40 PURPORT
There are other examples in our scriptures or by Prabhupada, which reveal man is not above the faults they are attributing to women.
"Similarly, men who are not satisfied at home require such concessions, and if there is no prostitute, than such low men will induce others into prostitution." SB 1.11.19
"Just like there are men. They get sex pleasure at home. Still they go to the prostitutes. Very beautiful wife, but he goes to prostitute. Taste is such bad. " Room Conversation, New Orleans, Aug 1, 1975
This is what a polygamist does. Gets sex pleasure at home and still is not satisfied.
Pusta Krishna: "The American soldiers, they were simply taking intoxication, hunting after prostitutes, and running from the enemy.
Prabhupada: "And when they were attacked, they were running away. Because they are sudras. How they can fight? They are not trained as kstriyas. Huh? Anyone who is unemployed, let him become soldier but he cannot fight. That is not possible. Neither this class of men can have good brain to give direction to society." Evening darshana, Washington D.C., July 8, 1976
The point here is that so many men are actually seeking lust and while one may claim the above examples are not the higher class of men, the fact remains that sex desire knows no class. Everyone has it. Also, in this age Prabhupada has pointed out, many times, that everyone is sudra.
"One gentleman in our, Mullicks Thakura Badhi, when he was there. He was attorney. So when there was some function, so all the neighboring men were invited. So he was also invited. He came with three, four prostitutes. And he was old man, blind. Asutosh Bhan. He became very rich man by cunning lawyer. So he would take credit that 'When I go to a friends house to keep my invitation I take some three, four prostitutes and flatter them. Then....' And he's be received very nicely. We have seen, when we were boys, ten, twelve years old. I have seen it. Formerly in our fathers time. It was aristoocratic to keep one prostitute and keep one garden also." Mayapur, Feb 14, 77
So we see even old men still have desire for sex and run after young prostitute. Wouldn't that make such men prostitutes too? <g> We also see, over and over, it is mostly men running after illicit sex with women, men running after prostitutes, and not women.
We also see these prostitutes were *kept* women. That did not make them wife, it made them prostitutes. So more than one wife, especially when it is not legal and she will never have legal or medical protection, he is really trying to talk her into being his *kept* woman.
If it is women who are at higher risk of prostitution, why is it that in every corner of the world it is MEN who go to prostitutes? This, therefore, makes such men prostitutes.
Further, we see it is the men running after prostitutes, even in India, not the women. One may argue, "But the prostitutes are women." Prabhupada explains that sometimes, due to situation, women become prostitutes.
"We may not hate even the prostitutes if they are devotees of the Lord. Even to date their are many prostitutes in great cities in India who are sincere devotees of the Lord. By tricks of chance one may be obliged......uncheckable in all circumstances. It is understood here with that even in those days, about five thousand years ago, there were prostitutes in a city like Dwarka, where Lord Krishna resided." SB 1.11. 19 PURPORT
Polygamy in this age will, without a shadow of a doubt, result in abusive activities as the fanaticism to be more Vedic than everyone else resulted in at our gurukulas. Similarly kali yuga polygamists arrogantly view themselves are more fixed up than most devotees in this movement and such arrogance results in frustration and anger when their wives cannot meet up. Abuse is the result.
To be honest, they are not advanced, men, it is clearly sinful desires. Sinful (read selfish) desires don't go well with Krishna Consciousness. In other words devotees should not think they can "dovetail" exploitation of women. No matter how many quotes from Srila Prabhupada they have. Anyone can twist scripture. It will never be a spiritual activity, it is simply male prostitution in hiding. Rather there will be serious karmic reaction waiting for those who exploit women, young or older. The goal is to never forget Krishna, not never forget women. These polygamists are like architects who are "opening up" the road (make that superhighway) to deviation from *pure* and simple Krishna consciousness. We should have a movement that regular, simple, even religious people are comfortable joining. If a man is not satisfied with one wife, he will not truthfully be satisfied with 20, 50, etc. This is because the man himself does not know *how* to take satisfaction. (Anonymous contribution)
"a person should be so nicely trained up that the one wife with religious, by performing religious ceremony, is given to him, he should be satisfied with her, not to see other women, adulteration. This is Kali-yuga." 1974 Srimad Bhagavatam class
Adulteration, according to the dictionary:
"To debase or make impure by adding inferior, alien or less desirable materials or elements."
Therefore taking more than one wife is inferior, alien and certainly less desirable for spiritual advancement, what to speak of the bad preaching - shows lack of morals to the nondevotee. (And even to some devotees who know the truth about what is going on.)
1976 Prabhupada said, "Tapasya begins with brahmacarya, life of celibacy, or accepting one wife only. That's all."
"A man is allowed to keep more than one wife because he cannot enjoy sex when the wife is pregnant. If he wants to enjoy sex at such a time, he may go to another wife who is not pregnant. These are laws mentioned in the Manu-samhita and other scriptures" (SB4.26.4, purport) See below: "What's Vedic Anyway."
Here it is revealed that only due to mans lust for gross sex that he may marry another women, and isn't it interesting that woman can control herself sexually while pregnant but man has more trouble with it? <g> So WHO has the greater sex desire? Time to be honest and stop passing the buck.
One may argue that upon pregnancy a woman's sex desire is automatically put under control by her body whereas the man, since he is not pregnant, does not have that extra help. Not true. Matter of fact, many nondevotees explain that a pregnant woman has raging hormones and therefore more sex desire! Yet we see pregnant devotee woman having no interest, so it is not about the physical taking over the body but a strong mind and proper desire. In which case polygamists cannot claim that their own hormones can't help it since he does not become physically pregnant, therefore claiming the right as well as need to marry another women in order to have more sex (impregnate her). He can control what he WANTS to control.
To take it further, accepting more than one wife because a man can't have sex due to the pregnancy of his current wife is not for the initiated male disciple who should be able to control himself. Otherwise, why did he take initiation? Prabhupada does not give us a process we cannot do. He would not instructed men to be brahmacari if they could not control their sexual lust and just HAVE to have many wives to resolve it for them, and Prabhupada wanted his householders to be brahmacari too. It is simply a matter of desire and what they choose to meditate on.
Men who have sit-down jobs are more likely to have trouble controlling their senses IF they are already thinking in this way. A man who is agitated can relieve it through hard work, such as chopping wood, book distribution (those books are heavy! <g>), serving at the temple, working with the cows, getting a job that requires him to work physically. Not all men need this but it is that obvious the polygamists do! Of course, if the desire is not there to free themselves of uncontrolled sex desire (many women), nothing will work.
Srila Prabhupada said in Bhagavatam class, "According to Vedic civilization, because man is very aggressive, so he's allowed to accept more than one wife."
Aggressive here refers to or results in sexual lust. Due to mans aggressive sex desire he may take more than one wife. So, if one is going to practice polygamy, at least tell the truth. It is not because they are big fixed up Vedic men who want to protect women. It is because they are fallen men who has no control over his mundane aggressive nature and wants to have sex with women.
Notice above that Prabhupada specifically indicates "man" and not "my devotees" thus indicating he is speaking about the human animal, biology, about culture and so on but *not* giving this instructions for the highest form of spiritual life. After all, even the Christian men, the good ones, have no problem remaining loyal to one wife. Therefore while one can accept that men are more sexually aggressive than women it does not indicate they can't control their aggressive sex desire, for example, during her pregnancy, or at any other time. Even a moral, pious karmi man can control it! As I stated above, Prabhupada does not give us a process we cannot do. Polygamists simply do not want to control their senses, starting with the mind.
It's pathetic really how these men can find ways to see themselves as more intelligent, more Krishna conscious, and even egalitarian by viewing women as prostitutes. It's even more pathetic that they see themselves as our saviours... offering us regular sex (as 2nd wives ) to save us from our vulnerable prostitute propensities and overwhelming lust!! In reality, we all know that it's an issue of power and control. Their desire for more sex is just a symptom of this overlying issue that is certainly a product of their deep insecurities and shaky spiritual position. I feel fortunate to be in a woman's body. (Anonymous contribution)
I wish these devotee men well. They cannot get well if no one speaks about this and points out how they are wrong. They hide behind scripture to justify their maya, thinking they are as advanced as what they read in ancient Vedic literatures. Polygamists need to realize that the pastimes of other ages do not apply to us in kali-yuga. Their understanding of polygamy gets very convenient. I hope and pray someone can yank them out of this illusion or that they wake wakes up themselves. This is for their benefit also. However, if that can't be done, at least there should be some reaction for what what they attempt.
"Those whose senses are very much uncontrolled especially try to hunt for many women." SB 4. 26. 4 Purport
Please note that none of the above, nor anything on this web page, is for the purpose of man bashing but simply to create a balance in regard to all the convenient quoting and woman bashing, as well as male glorification, by those men of a rascal mentality. One wonders what type of men would come into our spiriutal movement , avoid sufficient purification, and place so much focus on the bad qualities of women, advertising her so called lust and so called horrible, degrading qualities as loud and as hard as they can. They tried to change the transcendental set up Prabhupada created, ignoring or minimizing the bad qualities they themselves have (lack of self purificiation) and doing their best to make the life of women misserable. This began in the 1970s with a *conspiracy* and one can't help to stop and contemplate what kind of men would do such a thing? Much progress had been made, however, but now it has resurfaces in various ways. I know women who have been spat at just for her mere existence, women who have had mrdanga's riped right out of her hands even though she knew how to play it....the stories go on and get worse. It is shocking and disgusting, far from spiriutal. However, I know that most men in the movement are not like that so I offer all apologies to my sincere godbrothers. The contents of this web page are not about you.
MALE SUPERIORITY AND PSYCHOLOGY
I am not a professional therapist nor do I claim to be. However, one does not need a doctorate to recognize addictions. If polygamists doubt what I am about to say, I offer them the challenge of taking a psychological evaluation. No cheating. They must tell the therapist they believe women are a lower birth, that they believe in male superiority, and that they believe in polygamy along with all the reasons why.
One does not need to be a professional to detect an alcoholic, a drug addict and so on. Addiction is addiction. For that matter, it is usually the women of this movement who have detected sexual abuses first and were too often ignored. Authorities of our movement, please do not ignore us this time!
Anyway, let us hope it is mid-life crisis.
Guest (2) Well, lets take the situation of an individual who is very deeply addicted to the senses, such as sexual.
Prabhupada: That is only practice. There are processes by which you can give up so much addiction to sex life. There are processes. " SP lecture, SB 1968
Prabhupada himself recognizes that sex can be an addiction. Devotees don't need a PhD to figure it out.
In my opinion, and this is not a diagnoses just an opinion, polygamists have an illness called sexual addiction (SA). They are willing to ruin their entire reputation because of it. What needs to be recognized is that a common symptom of midlife crisis for men is an abnormal attraction to young girls. This definitely looks like they are going through midlife crisis. That does not make it acceptable. One CAN do something about it. Either way, SA or midlife crisis, it is an emotional problem which needs healing. Healing can't happen if it is ignored and many will suffer, not just the polygamists. Problems people and/or society ignores manages to find a way to our doorstep.
Most women will not stay with such a man who has emotional issues he refuses to deal with or admit to. He is allowing himself to stay in this maya yet he will blame her for leaving. A better boon would be if they admitted the truthful reason they desire polygamy and take to self-purification to rid themselves of this weakness.
Such men should come to the realization that they will have to become wanted rather than needed. That is only accomplished through qualification, not how much money they have, good housing, or the fact that they can take care of her. While that is important it certainly is not enough for a woman to marry! That is a purchase! Men will now have to attract a woman due to a good personality and prove their qualifications spiritually, not merely physically. Mechanical temple attendance or 16 rounds day, though important, does not automatically prove one is spiritually qualified. Interest in woman, many of them, is proof of lack of qualification. Nor is physical strength as important as they like to make it. Brawns aren't brains and might doesn't make right.
They will also have to learn relationship skills and take equal responsibility in making the marriage work, the right way. Learning communication skills wouldn't hurt, as some men have difficulty expressing themselves the right way (if at all), or trouble communicating without fighting. Talking is not necessarily communication. Yes, there is much more to marriage than meets the eye. Not as much sense gratification as some would want and a lot of work.
Of course, such men do not know any other way to have a woman in their life without controlling her. Therefore on one hand, a person can have compassion for them. On the other, it is time they grow up and learn how. Their method of male dominance has only resulted in countless divorces in ISKCON along with countless woman and child abuses. It is time to stop behaving like 13-year-old boys in 40/50-year-old male bodies.
While some men often quote verses in relationship to the psychological nature of women to want a good husband, and the psychological nature of a man is to have the desire to protect her, they often leave out the entirety of such comments. For example, at first Prabhupada speaks in a lecture about the nature of young woman to want good husband. However he follows it up with something higher:
"Prakrti means to remain dependent on the supreme husband or the the supreme father, as master. Dependent. Remain dependent. And Krishna has come to teach that natural position of the living entities." Gita Lecture 71
So if we are going to speak of nature, lets stop focusing on the mundane nature of the body or mind which is currently mis-used to collect and control women, and let us focus on our *real* nature - the soul. After all, everyone is prkriti, therefore this instruction is for men too. And everyone is female in relationship to Krishna. Men who are attached to their so called superior maleness are standing in the way of their own spiritual advancement. Time to recognize that they are prkriti.
Let's face it, in kali yuga EVERYONE is hankering after a good partner, men included. Otherwise these polygamists would not be running so hard after so many women. They are hankering and lamenting. Better to rise above it all and realize they should take some time out to gain in humility because we are all female in relationship to Krishna and getting some practice in regarding the submissive position is very important.
Polygamists do not have a clue about female psychology, as they are comparing women of this age to women in the Vedic literature. When we don't meet up, they put us down. That simple. They seem to forget they are kali-yuga progeny too. They also seem to forget that one can do anything and be Krishna Conscious. If women have to hold down a job and therefore her psychology does not fit into their mold, time they did the changing instead of expecting women to change to make life easier for them. :) A woman's Krishna Consciousness is much more important than demanding that she stick to a certian type of psychology which compliments her body (and his lust).
POLYGAMISTS ARE CONCERNED FOR THEIR DAUGHTERS
Polygamists have even said that they are concerned for their own daughters who may not be particularly attractive. However, this is another one I don't buy. Most parents do not see their child as unattractive but so beautiful they may even spoil her. :)
First, most devotee children ARE beautiful, being vegetarian/prasadamatarians :), born a devotee, hearing kirtan's (which is nice music), etc.
Second, most parents are in the illusion that their child is the most attractive child on the planet. :-)
Third, if they are not very pretty they usually are not ugly. Though I always thought that the outer body does not matter, but inner beauty. Yet we see what qualities these polygamists look for.
A woman does not become married merely due to looks. We have all seen unattractive women who a man fell for. She had various qualities. She may have been *cool* :-) or she may be spicy. She could be spry, or she could be mellow. Some women are funny, other women are serious, and yet there are others who have many other qualities, even if they do not look so pretty on the outside. (Seems polygamists want ALL these qualities so they run after many women.<g> That is called greed.)
These men are not sincerely concerned for their daughters. Their concern is only for themselves and as a direct result, they are willing to put their daughter in a polygamous marriage when she is older simply to justify their maya nonsense.
"Sometimes our Krishna Consciousness movement is criticized for mingling of men and women, but Krishna Consciousness is meant for everyone. ..... We therefore request all the members of the Krishna Consciousness -- both men and women -- not be attracted by bodily features but only to be attracted to Krishna. Then everything will be all right. Otherwise there will be danger." SB 6. 18. 41 Purport
There is no problem with someone following Varnashrama-dharma when they admit it is a starting place. There is a problem when they try to present it as the highest. If this is what Prabhupada wanted us to practice first and foremost it would have been what he preached the minute he reached our shores. What did he preach? You're not that body. Transcendental knowledge. Direct Krishna Consciousness. Therefore Varnasrama-dharma is not what Prabhupada wanted from initiated disciples predominately. As a back up system? Yes. However, he takes on our karma to free us from material bondage, so predominately he wants us to practice transcendental Krishna Consciousness. He should no longer suffer for us, having to return only because he has to get his disciples.
Although most of us are not able to see that we are pure soul, uninhibited by bodily designations, it is ONLY by the mercy of the pure devotee Srila Prabhupada and only by following his transcendental instructions, have we been rescued from this ocean of repeated birth and death. He gave us more than a starting place. He gave us a finishing place. It is through his teachings of aham brahmasmi and other similar points, those which are transcendental - not the caste system, that we can ever achieve it. To think that since we are not pure therefore we can't start with the highest process of Krishna Consciousness is to create a vicious cycle where one will never allow themselves the opportunity. Nonsense. Prabhupada allowed us the opportunity.
It is there merely for the taking. The way to become purified is to follow Prabhupada's transcendental teachings right now and to whatever degree we can.
We may not be pure, but that is how we will get pure. It is better to do less in Krishna Consciousness than to do more in Varnashrama-dharma. One should not find it a manifestation of pride to follow the instructions of the pure devotee, even when such instructions appear to be different from *some* parts of the scripture which were selectively picked. However, one must not allow pride to get in the way of following Prabhupada's instructions even when they do not please their senses, as some women find much sense gratification in viewing themselves as lowborn. It is really low self-esteem and therefore they will never hear truth about this topic because they don't want to, unless they heal.
It can also be arrogance, sometimes. One can claim to be the *best worst there ever was.* The lowest of the low. It makes a person sound so humble, but it is chest thumping. Also, by doing this one (thinks they) can escape responsibility to Srila Prabhupada claiming, "I was just a lowborn sudra woman. I couldn't do what you wanted Prabhupada."
Real humility is not found by accepting the body we are in, real humility is accepting Prabhupada's instruction to transcend it. When people enjoy the body they're in (men or women), or are attached to it in some way, they argue any philosophy that advocates getting beyond it. To accept woman as lowborn sudra is the caste system of varnasrama-dharma.
"When He (Lord Chaitanya) met Sri Ramananda Raya on the banks of the Godavari, the varnashrama-dharma followed by Hindus was mentioned by the Lord. Sri Ramananda Raya said that by following the principles of varnashrama-dharma and four orders of human life, everyone could realize transcendence. In the opinion of the Lord, the system of varnashrama-dharma is superficial only and it has very little to do with the highest realization of spiritual values." Srimad Bhagavatam, Introduction.
"The system of varnashrama-dharma is more or less based on moral principles. There is very little realization of the Transcendence as such, and Lord Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu rejected it as superficial and asked Ramananda Raya to go further into the matter." Srimad Bhagavatam, Introduction.
While the following verse starts out differently, explaining varnashrama-dharma, it ends up as:
"the institution of varnashrama-dharma is used by selfish men to pose an artificial predominance over the weaker section." Srimad Bhagavatam 1:2:13
It must be noted that Prabhupada's idea of varnashrama-dharma is different from what most devotees are preaching. A devotee can do anything for Krishna.
The so-called sudra may offer arati and is therefore not really a sudra. The so-called brahmana may clean the bathrooms and therefore is not really a brahmana. What are they? Vaisnavas! Prabhupada wanted us to "Krishnaize" Varnashrama-dharma. and bring it beyond the caste system of birth.
"The social institution known as varnasrama-dharma--the institution dividing society into four divisions of social life and four occupational divisions of caste--is not meant to divide human society according to birth. Such divisions are in terms of educational qualifications. " BG 16:1 - 3, Purport
Prabhupada clearly points out in his purport "educational qualifications" and "not meant to divide human society according to *birth.*" He does not say nor encourage this concept of lowborn, but of education.
"So unless one satisfies Krishna, one cannot correctly observe the principles of varnasrama-dharma." BG 2:48
Of course, this still remains a system where polygamy is allowed. It is not allowed in Krishna Consciousness for this age.
"Sri Sukadeva Goswami was a Vaisnava from the beginning, therefore there was no need for him to undergo all the processes of the varnasrama-dharma institution. Ultimately the aim of varnasrama-dharma is to turn a *crude* man into a pure devotee of the Lord, or a Vaisnava. Anyone, therefore, who becomes a Vaisnava accepted by the first class Vaisnava, or Uttama-adhikari Vaisnava, is already considered a brahmana, regardless of his birth or past deeds." Srimad Bhagavatam 1:2:2
According to this verse, one who has surrendered to the pure devotee uttama- adhikari is no longer to be viewed as sudra. This verse does not give women an easy-out, as they must become brahmana too. Not rubber-stamped by marriage, the caste varnashrama-dharma system, but through Srila Prabhupada, the uttama-adhikari.
"But Chaitanya Mahaprabhu said, 'This is external. Say something better.' So in this way Ramananda Raya was putting some better proposal than varnashrama-dharma." Srimad Bhagavatam Lecture, 1972.
"The system of caste, or varnashrama-dharma, is no longer regular even amongst so-called followers of the system. Nor is it now possible to reestablish the institutional function in the present context of social, political and economic revolution. Without any reference to the particular custom of a country, one can be accepted to the Vaisnava cult, and there is no hindrance in the transcendental process. So by the order of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu, the cult of Srimad Bhagavatam or Bhagavad-gita can be preached all over the world reclaiming all persons willing to accept the transcendental cult. Such cultural propaganda by the devotees will certainly be accepted by persons who are reasonable and inquisitive without any particular bias for the custom of the country. The Vaisnava never accepts another Vaisnava on the basis of birthright, just as he never thinks of the Deity of the Lord in a temple as an idol. And to remove all doubts in this connection, Srila Sukadeva Goswami has invoked the blessings of the Lord, who is all-powerful (prabhavisnave namaha). As the all-powerful Lord accepts the humble service of His devotee in devotional service of the arcana, His form as the worshipable Deity in the temple, similarly the body of a pure Vaisnava changes when he gives himself up to the service of the Lord and is trained by a qualified Vaisnava. The injunction of the Vaisnava regulation in this connection runs as follows: arcye visnau silar-dhir gurusu nara-matir vaisnave jati-buddhi sri-vaisnor namni sabda-samanya-buddhi, etc. 'One should not consider the Deity of the Lord as worshipable in the temple to be an idol, nor should one consider the authorized spiritual master as an ordinary man. Nor should one consider a pure Vaisnava to belong to a particular caste, etc.' " Srimad Bhagavatam 2:4:18
First, just for the record, cult in this sense means culture. Secondly, according to Srimad Bhagavatam, anyone who has taken spiritual initiation is not to be viewed according to birthright, or as lowborn sudra. It is an offense. Thirdly, while one may argue that we are not pure devotees, the only way to become pure is by discontinuing the caste system of varnasrama-dharma and following the transcendental instructions of Srila Prabhupada, our uttama-adhikari.
"This *modern* caste system is now condemned in India also, and it should be condemned for the classification of different types of men according to birth is not the Vedic or Divine caste system." SB 3: 6:13
"Lord Visnu asked King Prthu that everyone should follow the principles of Varnashrama-dharma then, in whatever capacity one remains in the material world, his salvation is guaranteed after death. In this age, however, since the system of VAD is topsy-turvey, it is very difficult to strictly follow all the principles. The only method for becoming perfect in this life is to develop Krishna Consciousness. As VAD is executed from different positions, by different men, so the Krishna Conscious principles can be followed by everyone in every part of the world." SB 4. 20. 15
I do not wish to offend the sincere devotees who wish to practice varnashrama-dharma, I only wish to mention that 1-it is the ONLY place polygamy is allowed and therefore to please elevate it and 2- practice the a higher form of varnashrama-dharma and Krishnaize it. I would have to add 3-Krishna Consciousness will always be higher than varnashrama-dharma therefore honesty is important for spiritual advancement. 4-If one wants to really practice varnashrama-dharma, try to do it the best way it can be done. That it, in SB 9.10.55 (1977 instruction) Prabhupada makes it clear in his purport that we establish "daivi-varnasrama-dharma" - marry only ONE woman, be loyal to her for life. This is the only way I can see varnashrama-dharma having any real hope of working on a long term basis.
WHAT'S VEDIC ANYWAY? Manu-Samhita and Translations By Those Other Than Srila Prabhupada
These polygamist repeatedly and proudly are calling themselves Vedic. Well, what is Vedic anyway?
What is being stated, and Prabhupada himself has made such comments, is that there are higher and lower Vedic literates and Vedic belief's. We are not interested in these lower scriptures but in the highest, which only Srila Prabhupada has translated. Obviously, there are different levels of the Vedas. So what is Vedic for US? Let Prabhupada answer that question:
"As stated in Bhagavad - Gita 15.15 vedas ca saravair aham eva vedyah: the real purpose of studying the vedas is to approach the lotus feet of Lord Krishna. Unfortunately, unintelligible people bewildered by the grandeur of Vedic yajnas."
Not to misunderstand. Vedic is good. However there are many Vedic persons in this world who are not Krishna Conscious such as mayavadi's, impersonalists, Saivites and demi-god worshipers. The Vedic literatures we need to follow are the highest of all Vedic literature: Srila Prabhupada's books not the Manu Samhita and these lesser scriptures.
"The less intelligent class of men (avipascitah), attracted by the flowery language of the Vedas, engage in fruitive activities to become materially benefited." SB 4:20:39.
Not to misunderstand. We want Vedic. However there are many Vedic persons in this world who are not Krishna Conscious such as mayavadi's, impersonalists, Saivites and demi-god worshipers. As I mentioned previously, even the Kama-sutra is Vedic. The Vedic literatures we need to follow are the highest of all Vedic literature: Srila Prabhupada's books, not lesser scriptures.
Srila Prabhupada, SB 1:1:3 "In the previous two slokas it has definitely proved that the Srimad Bhagavatam is the sublime literature which surpasses all other Vedic scriptures due to its transcendental qualities. It is transcendental to all mundane activities and mundane knowledge. In this sloka it is stated that Srimad Bhagavatam is not only superior literature but is the ripened fruit of all Vedi literatures. In other words, it is the cream of all Vedic knowledge."
"I consider the sankirtana more important than the Vedic ritualistic ceremonies.Both the ceremonies and the sankirtana were going on simultaneously. The ceremonies were meant for persons interested in Vedic rituals for the elevation to heavenly planets. (jadi-krta-matir madhu-puspityam), whereas the sankirtana was meant for pure devotees interested in pleasing the Supreme Personality of Godhead. We would have simply performed sankirtana, but the inhabitants of Vrndavana would not have taken the installation ceremony seriously. As explained here, the Vedic performances are meant for those whose intelligence has been dulled by the flowery language of the Vedas, which describe fruitive activities intended to elevate one to the higher planets. Especially in this age of Kali, sankirtana alone is sufficient. If the members of our temple in the different parts of the world simply continue sankirtana before the Deity, especially before Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, they will remain perfect. There is no need of any other performance. Nevertheless, to keep oneself clean in habits and mind, Deity worship and other *regulative principles* are required." SB 6:3:25
"janma-karma-phala-pradam Krishna-visesa bahulam bhogaisvara-gataim prati.' "Men of small knowledge are very much attached to the flowery words of the Vedas, which recommend various fruitive activities for elevation to heavenly planets, resultant good birth, power and so forth. Being desirous of sense gratification and opulent life, they say there is nothing more than this." BG 2.42-43
Prabhupada: Purport. Pusta Krishna. People in general are not very intelligent, and due to their ignorance they are most attracted to the fruitive......must perform these sacrifices, and men with think that this is the whole purpose of Vedic wisdom. It is very difficult for such inexperienced persons to be situated in the determined action of Krishna Consciousness. As fools are attracted to flowers of poisonous trees without knowing the results of such attractions, similarly unenlightened ....... persons have no faith in the liberation from material bondage, and they are very much attached to pompous ceremonies of Vedic sacrifice. They are generally *sensual* and they do not want anything other than the heavenly planets of life. " Evening Darshan, Teheran Aug 10, 76.
"Other learned scholars, headed by Jaimini, are always almost covered by the illusory energy, and therefore are more or less by the flowery language of the three Vedas, namely Rg, Yajur, and Sama, which are called trayi. Instead of becoming pure devotees, people captivated by the flowery words of these three Vedas are interested in Vedic ritualistic ceremonies." SB 4:20:30
"A Krishna Conscious person, or unflinching devotee of the Lord, should not be disturbed by the flowery language of the Vedas nor be engaged in fruitive activities for promotion to the heavenly kingdom. " BG 2: 53
Devotee reads: "Persons in Krishna Consciousness transcend the limit of sabda-brahmana or the range of the Vedas and Upanisads. "
"Bhagavad-gita is also known as Gitopanisad. It is the essence of Vedic knowledge and one of the most important Upanisads in Vedic literature." BG 2.52
Currently many devotees are reading literature which was not translated by Srila Prabhupada and thinking these are bona fide scripture. Manu-samhita and other, similar scriptures are not what he wanted us to read. The result of such lesser scriptures can result in woman and child abuse.
"I discussed the contents of your letter with His Divine Grace Srila Prabhupada. Srila Prabhupada stated that our grhastas should simply chant fifty rounds before conceiving a child. Prabhupada said, 'We do not want all these rituals. Chanting Hare Krishna is our only business. According to Manu-samhita you are all mlecchas and yauvanas. You cannot touch the Manu-samhita, what to speak of translating it. So if you try to follow the Manu-samhita then you will become a mleccha and yauvana and your career is finished." SPL May 19, 1977
If we try to follow Manu-samhita Prabhupada warns that we will become mleccha's and yauvana's, that our career as a devotee is finished. Real clear.
For those who do not agree with the above letter, here is further proof that we are not to read this.
"Manu Samhita is *not* a religion. It is moral principles for conducting society. Religion is how to become devotee of Krishna. That is religion." (April 20, 1974 Hyderabad)
"There are twenty types of religious scriptures called dharma-sastras, beginning with the Manu Samhita, and Parasara Samhita, but herein it is stressed that although one may become free from the reactions of the most sinful activities by following the religious principles of these scriptures, this cannot promote a sinful man to the stage of loving service to the Lord. On the other hand, chanting the holy name of the Lord even once, not only frees one immediately from the reactions of the greatest sins, but also raises one to the platform of rendering loving service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is described as Uttamasloka because He is famous for His glorious activities. " S.B. 6.2.11
And we all know that nothing can free one the reactions of the most sinful activities as much as chanting Hare Krishna can, what to speak of helping us develop love of God: Sri Sri Radha Krishna.
To take it beyond Manu-samhita, et cetra, Prabhupada's instructed that we are not to read ANY other translations, only his. We are not to hodgepodge with other translations either, thinking because we are also reading Prabhupada's translations it is all right. No. Only his and that is that. Because this instruction has not been followed there has been much confusion and problems.
"One should not partially study a book just to pose oneself as a great scholar by being able to refer to other scriptures. In our Krishna Consciousness movement we have therefore limited our study of Vedic literatures to Bhagavad Gita, Srimad Bhagavatam, Caitanya-caritamrita, and Bhakti-rasamrita-sindhu. These four works are sufficient for preaching purposes. They are adequate for the understanding of the philosophy and the spreading of missionary activities all over the world. If one studies a particular book, he must do so thoroughly. That is the principle. By thoroughly studying a limited number of books, one can understand the philosophy." (Madhya 22.118 purport)
If one thinks that they have understood Prabhupada's books thoroughly that is big mistake. We will be lucky if we gain proper understanding by dedicating an entire lifetime to just them. It is arrogant to think we can so-call move on.
The instruction that we are not to read other translations is not always in Prabhupada's books. This is why it is important to look at EVERYTHING Prabhupada has said.
In a reunion in Mayapura in 1975, the GBC told Prabhupada: "here are so many 'Prabhupada said,' better only accept what is in the books and tapes."
Srila Prabhupada answered: "No, what I say in talks also, many things I say are not in my books." (From Himavati.)
Still have doubts?
If you have got inclination to enjoy some drama, then you should take hint how that drama should be written or played. Don't manufacture. You are not so expert that you can manufacture things. That is illegal. Just like we do not read any rascal's book. They are manufacturing so many ideas. We read Bhagavatam, authorized. We read Srimad Bhagavad-gita. We read Brahma-samhita. Not rascal's book. What these rascals can write? They're imperfect. So don't waste your time. "
If one still wonders, or finds loopholes in the above, here is further evidence that we should only read translations by Srila Prabhupada.
"Brahmananda Swami has read me your letter regarding the students there reading other books. I request you to stop this practice. Our students have no time to read our own books, but they have time to read other's books, and the money to purchase them? Why this mentality is there? You are a serious student, therefore you have correctly found out the defect in these books. We don't want babaji class. We want active preachers. I hope this meets you in good health." SPL to Cyavana Swami: Oct. 13, 73
Those who still have doubts that these are Prabhupada's predominant instructions, read his Mayapur lecture: (Sorry, but I don't have a decoder for some of the words. You'll get the idea.)
"So in this verse two words are very important. One is virinca-gita. virinca means Lord Brahma and the followers. Just like we, Gaudiya-sampradaya, means we belong to the Brahma-sampradaya. Our sampradaya begins from Lord Brahma. There are similarly other sampradayas, just like Rudra-sampradaya, then Kumara-sampradaya, and there is Laksmi-sampradaya, Ramanuja-sampradaya. So there are four sampradayas. Brahma-sampradaya, Rudra-sampradaya, Kumara-sampradaya and Laksmi-sampradaya. And if we do not take either of *these* sampradayas in disciplic succession, then our *attempt* to advance in spiritual life will be failure. Sampradaya-vihina ye mantras te viphala matah. You cannot manufacture your own prayers unless you follow the footprints of mahajanas. They are mahajanas. This Brahma, mahajana; Lord Siva, mahajana; Kumara, mahajana. Laksmidevi is the potency, spiritual potency of Lord Visnu, Laksmi-Narayana, Narayana’s potency, ind she’s always engaged in massaging the lotus feet of Narayana. You have seen the picture. Sri-sampradaya. Sri. She is known as Sri. Sri means opulence, fortune, beauty. So she is the reservoir of all these things. So she has got... It is called Sri-sampradaya. The Ramanuja-sampradaya, they are called Sri-sampradaya. They worship Laksmi-Narayana. Everyone worships the Lord and His potency, spiritual potency. Just like we worship Radha-Krishna, similarly, the Ramanuja-sampradaya, they worship Laksmi-Narayana or Sita-Rama. So we should follow the sampradaya. Sampradaya-vihina ye mantras te viphala matah.
So here Prahlada Maharaja said that... Prahlada Maharaja is also mahajana because he follows mahajana. He says, virinca-gitah: “I’ll enjoy. I shall relish tava lila-kathah, Your pastime, the narration of Your pastime.” But it is not that narration, as it is written by some mundane dramatic drama writer or novel writer. No, not that. That is useless. You should not touch. If some *ordinary* person has written something about Krishna’s lila, you should not touch even. It must be in the sampradaya, must be *authorized* person. Otherwise it is useless. You should not touch even. Therefore he especially mentioned, lila-kathas tava nrsimha virinca-gitah: “which is given by mahajanas like Brahma.” Just like we offer prayers from Brahma-samhita. We cannot offer prayer from any other persons, written by any other nonsense. No, that is not possible. virinca-gitah. There is power. If you recite the prayers composed by mahajana, it has got spiritual power. Just like in your country, Mr. Max Mueller, he’s very *famous as translator of Vedas.* But... Many scholars, they have read the translation of Max Mueller, but nobody could understand what is the purpose of Vedas because he’s not in the line. He’s useless. Similarly, that French professor, he has mentioned specially... In comparison to my writing—he has rejected even Aurobindo and Dr. Radhakrishnan. Yes, that is right. What Dr. Radhakrishnan, Aurobindo, knows about Krishna consciousness? Because they are not in the line. They simply tried to exhibit their erudite scholarship. So that is useless. Nayam atma pravacanena labhyo na medhaya na bahuna srutena. This is the injunction given in the Vedas. Ayam atma, self-realization, God realization... Nayam atma bala-hinena labhyah: “One who has no spiritual strength, he cannot understand.” It is not possible. Nayam atma bala hinena... Na medhaya. If you have got very good fertile brain for manufacturing concocted ideas, that doesn’t mean you’ll be able to understand Krishna. That is not possible. Nayam atma pravacanena labhyo na medhaya na bahuna srutena. Only one who is favored by Krishna and His, I mean to say, confidential devotee... (aside:) What is this nonsense? One cannot understand.
Therefore Prahlada Maharaja is giving warning that “I shall recite the narration of Your pastime which is composed by Brahma.” Virinci. Virinci means... siva-Virinci-nutam. That is the secret of success. You cannot compose by whimsical way. No. That is not. That will not be possible. Therefore the next word is very important, when he says, pada-yugalaya-hamsa-sangah. Pada-yugalaya-hamsa-sangah. This is possible when we associate, sangah... Sangah means association. Whose association? Pada-yugalaya-hamsa. One who is... Because Krishna’s feet is compared as lotus—“lotus feet,” we say—so where there is lotus, there is hamsa, swan. Swan, you’ll find. That is the difference between the crows and the swan.
..... Any literature, very nicely written, just like Shakespeare writing or some other, big, big mundane writers, their writing, it is very nicely written, grammatically very correct, and metaphorically very nicely meant... Na tad vacas citra-padam. Citra-padam means very artistically written. There are literatures very artistical. Na tad vacas citra-padam harer yaso pragrnita karhicit. But there is no glorification of the Lord; simply literary presentation. Such kind of literature is described, tad vayasa-tirtham: “This kind of literature is preferred by the class of men who are like crows.” Crows. But the Vedic literature, which is sung by Lord Brahma or Lord Siva or a devotee, even that is broken language presented, tad grnanti srnvanti sadhavah: “They’ll be accepted by saintly person. They’ll sing it and they’ll accept it.” That is the secret of success. If your literature is exactly following the mahajano yena sa gatah, then it will be liked by highly advanced saintly person. And if it is a presentation of mundane literary career... Therefore that gentleman has *rejected* even Aurobindo and Dr... Others he has rejected: “They are useless.” Other commentation on Bhagavata, he has... But he has rejected even Aurobindo and Dr. Radhakrishnan. Dr. Radhakrishnan is well known as a big philosopher, and Aurobindo, he’s also known as great speculator, but he rejected. Yes, they should be rejected because it is vayasa-tirtha. What is the use, jugglery of words? It has no fact, all imaginary. All imaginary.
So they are going on like that. Therefore one must be warned, as Prahlada Maharaja said. This is mahajana yena... Prahlada Maharaja means... He... As he is saying, we must accept. We should not indulge in speculation in..., or literature, literary career, which is never touched by the mahajana. So it is that one must be... The literature must be virinca-gitah. Why you are giving so much stress on Bhagavad-gita *as it is?* Because it is spoken by Krishna. Similarly, anything written by Krishna’s pure devotee, that is important. Otherwise it’s not important. It is not important. So ’ham priyasya suhrdah. We should be engaged always. Reading book is very good, but it must be *written by authorities.* Then it is good. Now, otherwise, if you read twenty-four hours the newspaper or ordinary book, that kind of reading is simply waste of time. But if we read *authorized literature,* then that... What will happen then? Then ajas titarmy anugrnan guna-vipramukto. Very easily, simply by reading such book, we shall be free from material entanglement, simply. Because... Just like Bhagavad-gita. Bhagavad-gita and Bhagavan Krishna, they are identical. There is no difference." SP lecture, S.B.(canto 7 chap. 9) Mayapur 2/25/76
Devotees must stop reading scripture that is not translated by the pure devotee jagat guru, specifically, Srila Prabhupada. He made this instruction very clear. There will be much pain, confusion and agony if it is not followed.
DHARMA OF MARRIAGE
We must first understand that Prabhupada did not come here to teach us dharma of marriage, as the polygamists are preaching, but love of God/Krishna. Whatever way one can accomplish that is more important than these other things. Granted, marital issues must be resolved, but taking shelter of polygamy, this *dharma of marriage* is not necessarily Krishna Consciousness, nor will it truthfully resolve any marital or divorce issues or make anyone think of Krishna more. It makes one think of lust more. This is the fantasy of every man - to have more than one women. They claim protection, possibly thinking the women are so unintelligent that they won't see through them, but this is really a karmi desire for sense gratification and they looking for a loophole.
While it is true that in India men and women all live together in one house, I have spoken with some of those women, who will only confide in another woman. They are miserable. It's not working, just sounds pretty. It is kali-yuga in India too. Prabhupada didn't come here to give us lessons on how to be married. He came here to teach us to love and serve Krishna. If a modern family has the wife going to work and the husband taking care of the children and house, but they are Krishna Conscious, that should not disturb the mind. If it does one should ask themselves if they are really concerned with what is Krishna Conscious or with what is male oriented and pleasing to their male senses, including the mind. (Not all men think in such ways.)
Women are not puppets that man can control and force to be happy or homogeneous. If kali-yuga man thinks woman is going to be happy with other women in the home, he is in a dream world. If he thinks that their inability to live in harmony is due to their stubbornness, he fully realizes it is going to be hard on her and is already protecting himself by such a blaming statement, not protecting her. (So where is the woman protection???!!) He is apathetic. It is the man who is being stubborn, attached to polygamy instead of his currents wife's protection from this anxiety. I suggest such a man live with a group of other men for a very long period of time and discover what the real reasons are for lack of harmony. This way he can also see if he can meet the expectations he has of women. In this age co-op living is not possible.
Certainly women want to take care of their children and have good family life, but let us not make THAT our religion. This is what the nondevotees do. The women in this movement have always taken care of their children and polygamists have SOME NERVE accusing them of not doing so. Therefore to offer some balance, let it be known the the Vedic literature warn WOMEN about householder life.
"A woman, therefore, should consider her husband, her house and her children to be the arrangement of the external energy of the Lord for her *death,* just as the sweet singing of the hunter is death for the deer." [SB 3.31.42]
How is THAT dharma of marriage? It is not, so polygamists should stop preaching this hollier than thou doctrine of dharma of marriage as Vedic as if it is Krishna Consciousness. Basically, polygamists should not be arrogant like this and think of themselves as so great that many women will want them or should want them, and that their doctrine of dharma of marriage will save her. It will not save her but will give her repeated birth and death, and it will bring him much sense gratification. Prabhupada will save her.
"A man within the material world is just like a *dead body*. In fact, superficially, the living entity is covered by this body, which is nothing but a bag of skin decorated with a beard and mustache, hairs on the body, nails on the fingers, and hairs on the head. Within this decorated bag are bunches of muscles, bundles of bones, and pools of blood. always mixed with stool, urine, mucous, bile and polluted air and enjoyed by different kinds of insects and germs. A foolish woman accepts such a dead body as her husband and, in sheer misunderstanding, loves him as her dear companion. This is possible only because such a woman has never tasted the ever-blissful flavor of Your lotus feet." KB, Ch 59, Talks Between Krishna and Rukmini.
So let us not waste our time in dharma of marriage. Not to go the other extreme and ignore marriage, just have a decent one, a good one, a sane one, and don't get fanatical like this, with so many vedic injunctions, rules and so on about *how* to be married. Want to learn how to be married that works for US? Go the the library and get some basic, simple and realistic how-tos that work for this age, as they have been proven since they worked for many others. Of course, such men will not like that, as they can no longer hide from their contributions to any difficulties in the marriage. It is so much easier to blame the women. They can no longer be guru who is never wrong. However, if only they realized that it will lead to such NICE marriage. Take gold from a dirty place.
We are not interested in rituals or fanatical rules. We have already seen what that resulted in. Polygamists who had their heads buried in the sand when all that was going on (maybe some were brahmacari-sort of), should humble themselves and hear from devotees who were living it. Therefore, keep marriage simple. For that matter, the kama sutra is vedic. We do not want this. The goal is Krishna. If we become lost in too much studying of these other things we end up with a new and very different goal than the one Prabhupada gave us. Better to study how to go back to Godhead in one life, than to waste time in the pleasures of marriage to many women. Time is so short in this age. The life span is 100 years and even that is no longer reached. Let us spend it studying about Krishna.
"Vidyapati, a great and learned poet of Mithila, has said that the pleasure derived from friendship, society and family life in the material world is like a drop of water, but our hearts desire pleasures like an ocean. Thus the heart is compared to a desert of material existence that requires the water of an ocean of pleasure to satisfy it's dryness. If there is a drop of water in the desert, one may indeed say that that it is water, but such a minute quantity has no value. Similarly in this material world no one is satisfied in the dealings of society, friendship and love. Therefore if one wants to derive real pleasure within his heart, he must seek the lotus feet of Govinda. In this verse Rupa Goswami indicates that if one wants to be satisfied in the pleasure of society, friendship and love, he need not seek shelter at the lotus feet of Govinda, for if one takes shelter under His lotus feet, he will forget the minute quality of so-called pleasure. One who is not satisfied with that so-called pleasure may seek the lotus feet of Govinda, Who stands on the shore of the Yamuna as Kesitirtha, or Kesigatha in Vrndavana and attract all the gopis to His transcendental loving service." Adi-lila 5.225
Those men who do not want to properly share their wife with Krishna according to the way Prabhupada engaged women, who do not realize she belongs to Krishna and not to him, while we respect them as devotees it still remains true that they are looking for *material* love, friendship and society. It may be in the mode of goodness, it may *include* Krishna, but it is not on the transcendental and highest platform of cent per cent Krishna Consciousness, which is what Prabhupada wanted for his initiated devotees. Don't want to do that? Then don't take initiation.
WHO WILL SUPPORT THE WOMEN?
Polygamists have sarcastically asked, who will support the women?:ISKCON? Their guru? Is it really so hard for them to grasp that there is nothing wrong with women working and women do not need polygamists to support them?! Again, lack of humility and more control freak consciousness.
Women do not expect ISKCON or their guru to maintain them. They are not invalids or so unintelligible that they can't learn skills, hold down jobs, go to college for a career or maintain themselves. Some men would like to take these away in order to control and accumulate women in the name of protection; and to convince ladies that they are not bright when in reality they are being deprived of various types of education and kept in the mode of ignorance by such a "good" husband. Short of defending a woman from being physically attacked in a back alley, men do not have much else to offer that a woman can't obtain herself. For that matter, some ladies take martial arts or at least self-defense classes. Sorry polygamists, you're just not needed. (Seems like polygamist are trying to start a religion of their own, a control freak religion.)
Prabhupada DID say women can go to college if they are married, get a good education or go to work.
"When Srila Prabhupada was asked if Jyotirmayi should finish her studies in ethnology (study of religion and cultures) in order to teach vaisnavism in the universities, he answered, "Yes, she is very intelligent girl, she can do it." (Yogesvara)
Bhibavati asked Srila Prabhupada: "Should I live like in the Vedic times, and simply serve my husband and child?" Srila Prabhupada replied: "No, you have a talent as a writer, you should write articles for newspapers and propagate Krishna Consciousness." (Bhibavati)
After Prabhupada spoke about how he very much liked the idea of Yamuna and Palika to open a brahmacarini ashrama, he further instructed on how to make their own money.
"If you produce milk, you should not drink milk very much. Rather, you should save it and convert it into ghee and then sell it to the householders and centers and thus maintain your asrama. The excess quantity of ghee may be exchanged by trade. Kirtana is our first duty. The Deity worship should be simple and the eating should be as meager as possible." SPL to Palika November 13, 1975.
In this way we can see that they did not have to be dependent on men for money, to support them. Prabhupada told them how to support themselves.
POLYGAMISTS CLAIM THERE IS A SHORTAGE OF FIRST CLASS MEN
It never ceases to amaze me how highly these *superior* men think of themselves. Prabhupada did not give us a process that only some men can attain and not all.
Nor will women will not fall apart without a husband. They joined this movement to serve Krishna, not men. They were given the status of brahmacarini every bit as seriously as men are given the status of brahmacari. Prabhupada was not pretending when he created the brahmacarini ashrama. Certainly in time all will marry, but ALL will marry, not just the women. The solution is not to leave the weaker men in an unqualified condition so polygamists may have free reign, but to elevate them to the proper level of Krishna consciousness and than there will not be unqualified husbands. Realistically, even if some men shouldn't marry, they will anyway. Prabhupada did not give us a process that only qualified some and not others. By preaching and giving a helping hand they will become qualified. Thus no need for polygamy, again.
If a man doesn't feel comfortable about preaching to these less qualified men, than he should not be so quick to view himself as advanced enough to take on another wife. Relationship skills are relationship skills, whether it is with women or men. If they can't preach to their godbrothers and get along (not tolerate, but connect), or accept preaching from their godbrothers due to false ego, or have godbrother friends they visit with, they shouldn't think they are not suffering from low self-esteem and are behaving spiritually. It is very common for men who can't get along with other men to go after women they can lord it over, who can look up to him, admire him, and other men will admire them for it. Thus the man feels his power again. Artificially. They can claim this is not what is going on but they are in denial. Jiv jago!
"The point is that every human being is expected to elevate himself to the position of brahmana, the most intelligent man, and than one must transcend that position and become a Vaishnava." CC Madya-lila 8.6
If there are not enough qualified men, start preaching guys! If you can't do that, stop claiming you are such big advanced *vaisnava.*
WHAT IS A BRAHMANA?
We see so many of the polygamists and (some) other men who believe they are superior merely because they are a *man,* running around screaming: "I am brahmana, I am brahmana!" as if this automatically makes them a fixed up devotee. Nonsense. A brahmana keeps a cow or at least takes care of cows (donations). And brahmana simply means one who is in the mode of goodness, not one who is automatic Vaishnava. After all, one can worship Lord Shiva or the various demi-gods and still be a brahmana. So lets take a look at some points Prabhupada makes about what a brahmana is, which, once again, they won't tell you or will water down.
"The highest qualification of a person in the *material* world is to be brahmana. But since a brahmana is in the mode of goodness, to be a brahmana is *not sufficient* for becoming a representative of the Lord. One has to transcend the mode of goodness also and be situated in unalloyed goodness, unaffected by any of the qualities of material nature."SB 3.4.31
"Brahmana qualities mean brahma jayanti iti brahmana. That is nirakara, of course, but you have to transcend the position of brahmana. and become Vaishnava." SP lecture, 1973
"Vaisnava is above brahmana." SB lecture, 1975
"But if you be engaged in *devotional service,* then immediately you transcend all the qualities. You become *more than* brahmana -- Vaishnava. Vaishnava means he is transcendental to the brahminical qualities also." SP lecture, 1973
Yet, are these *brahmana* polygamists who are lusting after virgin girls or young women really brahmana's?
"The material type of goodness is just like a pure brahmana: satya samo damah titiksa, with all the good qualities. Truthfulness, controlling the senses, controlling the mind, full of knowledge, tolerance, and knowledge......knowledge means about the Supreme. These are brahmaincal qualifications. But sometimes these brahminical qualifications become contaminated by the other two qualities: passion and ignorance." SP lecture, 1971
Better the polygamists follow THIS instruction on brahmana:
"A brahmana may renounce his family and accept sanyasa." <g> Purport, Madya-lila 8. 61, ch 2
Certainly if they have children they should not leave, but the point is there, that they should focus more on renunciation and less on accumulating women.
There is something to be noticed here, when it comes to our self-proclaimed Vedic men. That is that all their concentration, when it comes to practicing/establishing Vedic society, it is -- women. And not even just anything and everything that concerns women, but explicitly those aspects that bring about the result that is *enjoyable* by men, in some or another way. Gee, for that you don't have to call yourself "a vedic man". That's what everybody else there out is about. (Anonymous contribution)
These men, who never lifted a finger for society, suddenly are telling us how polygamy will be an asset for society at large. We shall see how much they really care about society when they can't *save* it by collecting many women and will have to DO something FOR society to improve it, instead of for themselves. Let them do some hard work and garden in the community garden, help taking care of the cows, feed the homeless or shelter the aged. THAN we shall see if they really care about society or not.
Nor are they doing women the great favor they claim they are. The Vedas explain that it is considered UNFORTUNATE if a woman has to be a co-wife. So, how is that auspicious? It is only for the man. In the story of Lord Chaitanya, He was going to curse the girls to marry of an old man who had many co-wives and that was not considered good. Neither the idea of co-wife nor old man was considered good at all.
Some men may become angry that we keep claiming it is kali-yuga and we are therefore not so much Vedic, but these are just the facts. After all, they were born in this age too and should not think they are so deserving of more. Instead, Prabhupada gave us a method to work with what we have and can go back to home, back to Godhead. He was not as concerned with all this polygamy consciousness as he was with spiritual advancement, which does not always fit the mold of men who have a personal agenda.
One philosophy often used by men is that women are nine times lustier, often quoted from the story of Kadama Muni. Let's remember that it is kali-yuga and much is backwards in this age.
Also, as one godsister put it, maybe a woman has more lust AFTER seduced, but before that happens and in normal every day life? No. It is the man who is has more trouble with lust, without a doubt. For that matter, tests have been done where men and women were asked how many times they thought of sex a day. The men ranked much higher than the women, thinking of it almost all the time whereas the women thought of it much less.
"For a young man it is very difficult it is very difficult to check sex desire" SPL to Bhakti Jan, 68-2-12
Very clear. And we can see it is not limited to men who are young, as even on the death bed the example is there that the old man looked to the young girl. Men have a more powerful sex desire than most women. They need to own that or how can they control what they do not own about themselves? It cannot be done, and we can see factually in this movement that due to men blaming women for their own lust, there has been much molestation and violence as a direct result. In my opinion, most of these warnings Prabhupada gives about women, how they make man fall down and so on, is not about the woman having more lust but the man!
Women nine times lustier? Let's clear something up. I am tired of such men mis-using shastra to pass the buck and blame their lust on women, and by the very same natured men (which is not all men) who claim they are woman protectors. That is dishonesty, not Krishna Consciousness. To blame something this sensitive, this violating and this large, on woman is the farthest thing from protection and is downright abusive on every level. Even to ones self it will not lead to spiritual advancement. One cannot advance when they are not honest about their personal anarthas.
[Text 2539557 from COM] (Used with the authors permission.)
Dear prabhus, Please accept my obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada. All glories to the devotees of the Lord.
A while back, a godsister and I were discussing and the quote, "Women are nine times lustier than men " was brought up. My godsister has been some extended time in India and she discovered that the Indian/English use of the word "lust" is different than the American use of the word . In India, "lust" refers to any hankering, any hungering, even passion... as in "lust for life"... I decided to look it all up...
The following definitions are taken from the American Heritage Dictionary :
" lust - 1. intense or unrestrained sexual craving. 2. An overwhelming desire or craving : a lust for power 3. Obs. Pleasure ; relish. - intr.v. lust-ed, lusting, lusts. ..."
" lustY adj. - ier, iest 1. Full of vigor ; robust. 2. Powerful ...
3. LustFUL l. 4. Merry, joyous - lustily adv. - lustiness n.
Note here that the word "lusty" is only remotely connected to the word " lust", and not even considered in variations of usage. Based on these two differing meanings, it seems that Srila Prabhupada's statement that "women are nine times lustier " implies that "women" are nine times more energetic, full of health and strength, effective and potent. From my personal observation and life experience , this understanding rings true.
On the other hand, studies on human sexuality conclude that men are far more absorbed in "lust" than women are, in general. Within the worlds societies one can observe based on numbers of males in positions of power alone, that is who "craves" power, is full of "lust" for power. This lust in males is observable in every sphere and strata of my experience.
I hope this finds you all well.
your truly fallen servant,
One very important point is that marriage is for calming the mind and controlling the senses. We have often seen an agitated brahmacari who is not peaceful in that ashrama. It is time for him to move on, and so he takes a wife and everyone notices that he is so much nicer now! He has peace, he is satisfied. If, however, he has the option of marrying many women, when the first marriage becomes less than perfect, as the ALL do, he will not look within to see what purification this grhasta ashrama is revealing to him about himself, but instead run after many other women. Thus the grhasta ashram turns into grhamedhi. The innocent brahmacari no longer knows how to find peace.
PROTECTION, PROTECTION, PROTECTION - Yada Yada Yada
Polygamists can claim it is only for the protection of women until the cows come home and I will not believe them. Most won't believe them, male devotees included. It is just a cover up. A man who doesn't know HOW to take satisfaction with one woman can't have a real relationship in the first place. He needs to look within and see why he hankers for more and more and MORE women, foolishly claiming he is protecting them. If it is about protection and not lust, why does he not take an interest in protecting the simple little brahmacari in the men's ashrama who may be having a hard time? Or the boy children? Or the cows? Protection is for everyone and it is interesting that they have this big interest in so-called protection of women.
We are not living in a barbaric society where some animal-type men are going to attack woman. Yes, there are some men out there like that, (there are some women out there capable of doing that too!), and sure it happens. However, not to this degree where we all have to be so fear based. Such men who advocate polygamy blow this concept of the need protection out of proportion, attempting to create an imagined fear in women and society as an excuse to collect many females and keep them oppressed. It is rather humorous in one sense, as the very men making such claims usually can't protect her anyway. They are not big kstriya's, they are usually little brahmana's, or men who are untrained in combat and can't fight to save their life, what to speak of hers!
The show Xena has made a good point too. Not that I am so inclined toward Xena but the example is still there. She can protect herself and I know, personally, a devotee woman who is quite good in martial arts, yet very feminine and a good devotee. This is a possibility that should be recognized. If women have to partake, or accept for their godsisters, polygamy, than they would rather learn how to protect themselves rather than engage in such a toxic lifestyle. Devotee women are not gong to let kali yuga polygamists turn them into prostitutes and claim they aren't. We know what they are up to and rather learn to martial arts than become their prostitute for the mere sake of so-called protection by men who can't fight their way out of a paper sack. The fact is, these male polygamists are the prostitutes with uncontrolled sex desire and uncontrolled minds, which is really one and the same.
Also regarding Xena, I did not see the show but spoke to someone who did and she said that there was no homosexuality in it at all, that someone was being ridiculous by making such a statement. This makes me wonder if calling Xena a lesbian is an excuse so they can put down woman with their own protection abilities. Or, if she is a homosexual they can write off the whole show and all the wonderful preaching it did? Some may be envious that the nondevotees did such good preaching while we have done so little.
And of course, no one should be hurt. Krishna protects everyone, but this might be too much for them. :)
POLYGAMISTS WANT TO BE GURU
There is not a *pati-guru* (husband as guru) in this age. No one is that advanced. Such husbands who think they are that great will have to step down and let Prabhupada be guru of the women. He would not have initiated women if he thought husbands could do the job.
"But the present age of kali is full of ignorant men. Even those who are born by a brahmana father are, in the present age, no better than the sudra or the women. " SB 1.3. 21
We can see that Prabhupada has given women different instructions than her husband would have, had she accepted husband as guru. Here are a few letters to prove this.
3 February, 1975 Honolulu
My dear Kusa devi dasi,
Please accept my blessings. I am in due receipt of your letter dated Jan. 30, 1975 and have noted the contents. I have studied your situation carefully and I encourage you to live in the temple in the association of fixed up devotees who are following my teachings strictly. If your husband cannot follow our principles properly, you are not to think that you should let that hamper your spiritual life. You should stay with us and cultivate spiritual life peacefully under Krishna's protection and care. If he is not interested in spiritual life, let him do as he pleases. I have given all of my disciple instructions to follow for making spiritual advancement, but if they do not have the desire to follow, then what can I do? Anyone who is unwilling to follow our regulated principles, you should not live or associate closely with such a person.
I hope this meets you in good health.
Your ever well-wisher,
A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
Bombay, 25 December, 1974, London
My dear Malati,
Please accept my blessings. I am in due receipt of your letter dated 21, Dec. 74 and have noted the contents carefully. I want you to stay there in London. This is my order. Hamsaduta cannot make you leave. If necessary you can show him this letter. To prove that your Guru Maharaja wants you to stay there and execute your devotional service in London.
Concerning that remark by Himavati about your being guilty because you are the wife of Syamasundara. who has done horrible things, therefore you must suffer, that is not a fact. Your husband has done nothing horrible. Maybe he has made mistake but he has not done anything horrible.
I have asked Brahmananda Swami to go to London as soon as possible from Hawaii and investigate the situation there. I am very concerned about this problem and I hope Brahmananda Swami will be able to clear things up there. When he comes you can inform him of what has happened there.
If your husband, Syamasundara. is not even keeping correspondence with you how can we know what is his position. Please try to advise him to return the money he owes as soon as possible. Chant 16 rounds, follow all of our regulative principles then everything will be all right in a very short time. I am hoping he will do like this. So you please continue your devotional service, cooking etc, and you can also keep giving Bhagavatam class if you like. Women in our movement can also preach very nicely. Actually male *and* female bodies, these are just *outward* designations. Lord Caitanya said that whether one is brahmana or whatever he may be if he knows the science of Krishna then he is to be accepted as guru. So one who gives class, he must read and study regularly and study the purport and realize it. Don't add anything or concoct anything, then he can preach very nicely. The qualification for leading class is how much one understands about Krishna and surrendering to the process. Not whether one is male or female. Of course women, generally speaking are less intelligent, better she has heard nicely then she will speak nicely.
I hope this meets you in good health.
Your ever well-wisher,
A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
Los Angeles, 25 April, 1973
My Dear Caitanya Dasi,
Please accept my blessings. I am in due receipt of your letter dated April 23, 1973, and I have noted the contents. I am very much disturbed to hear of Kanupriya's activities, and I advise you that so long he is engaged in these nonsense activities, you should not have any association with him. Best thing is that you remain in the association of devotees, and take part in the temple worship here, not separately. Worship of Radha and Krishna is no cheap thing. It cannot be done whimsically, but it must be very carefully executed under strict regulation. Not that there can be LSD taking and all sinful activities, and then Deity worship. I have made it a point that unless one is able to keep to the same standard that is kept here at the temple, he should not worship the Deity separately. Best thing is to keep a Guru-Gauranga altar at home and take part in the Deity worship program at the temple.
You have got a very big responsibility to give your daughters a good Krishna conscious atmosphere for developing into nice devotees. If you also take up these sinful activities and neglect the principles of Krishna Consciousness, then that is a great misfortune. Your first consideration must be to see that your children become Krishna conscious, and if your husband will not take his responsibility, then what can be done? Simply you must keep to the principles, and pray to Krishna to help you.
Hoping this will meet you in good health,
Your ever well-wisher,
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
WOMEN AND INTELLIGENCE
Often polygamists use the example that the a woman's intelligence never increases beyond that of a 14 year old girl. This isolation of a text and selective quoting has confused some new comers as well as pushed many women out the door who would have joined. These men forget to mention other verses in the Vedas, such as older women develop wisdom or that in kali yuga even men are sudra. So if we are 14, so are they. <g> Anyway, it is an insult to the intelligence of female lawyers, doctors, dentists and so on, therefore they do not join. One must wonder if polygamists hate female professionals so much that this is their goal, that this brings them happiness. We want to attract the intelligent class of women to this movement to, so let it be known that in kali yuga many things are different!
Prabhupada says many things about women's intelligence level. Unfortunately polygamists or those who believe in male superiority will not show you the whole picture. So lets look at what they hide from us or try to make excuses for.
* "When Srila Prabhupada was asked if Jyotirmayi should finish her studies in ethnology (study of religions and cultures) in order to teach vaishnavaism in the universities, he answered, "yes, she is very intelligent girl, she can do it." (Yogesvara)
* Srila Prabhupada said to a lady disciple: "Well, if you think you are a woman that means you are less intelligent, because you are supposed to understand that you are a spirit soul and that your real identity is transcendental to these bodily designations." (Sadaputa)
Similarly, it would appear that, if a man thinks he is a man that ALSO is a sign of one who is less intelligent. (Such as men who think they are a superior birth due to their mundane body.)
* "Another examination will be held sometime in 1971 on the 4 books, Bhagavad-gita, Srimad Bhagavatam, Teachings Of Lord Chaitanya and the Nectar of Devotion. One who will pass this examination will be awarded the title Bhakti-vedanta. I want that all my spiritual sons and daughters will inherit this title of Bhakti-vedanta, so that the family transcendental diploma will continue through the generations. Those possessing the title of Bhakti-vedanta will be allowed to initiate disciples. Maybe by 1975 all my disciples will be allowed to initiate and increase the number of generations. That is my program." (letter to Hamsadutta, 1968)
* "Regarding your questions about the examination to be given, the girls will also be able to take these. In Krishna Consciousness there is no distinction between girls and boys. The girls also may become preachers if they are able." (letter to Himavati, 1969)
* "Now I see that in our Society the girls are more intelligent than the boys." (Letter to Krishna Devi, 1970)
* It is not that women should only produce children, but they are meant for advancing in devotion." (letter to Jayatirtha, 1975)
* "Regarding your question, yes woman can certainly reach the perfectional stage of devotion to Krishna." (letter to Krishna Devi, 1969)
* In France, when Prabhupada noticed that Jyotirmayi could pronounce the Sanskrit better than others, (she had been taught by Nitai, His personal Sanskrit secretary), Srila Prabhupada said that from now on, she should lead the recitation of the Sanskrit verses before class. (Jyotirmayi, 1972)
* "I want to organize a women's kirtan party singing the Gita-gan. Can you help me?" (letter to Gargamuni Maharaja, 1974)
* A disciple of Swami Narayana said to Srila Prabhupada, "My spiritual master said to avoid all women and to never go where there are women." Srila Prabhupada laughed, and said, "That is impossible, there are women everywhere." Then, coming back to the temple and watching two women devotees bow down to him, he said, "By associating with these women, you will be purified." (Madhavananda)
* An acarya who comes for the service of the Lord cannot be expected to conform to a stereotype, for he must find the ways and means by which Krishna Consciousness may be spread. Sometimes jealous persons criticize the Krishna Consciousness movement because it engages *equally* both boys and girls in distribution of love of Godhead. (Chaitanya-caritamrita A.L. ch.7 purport of verses 32 and 38)
* Srila Prabhupada: "You dance, she dances. You sing, she sings, you cook, she cooks, there is no difference. You are the same in Krishna's eyes."
* kalau sudra sambhava: in the age of Kali, everyone is sudra. In the Vedic times, women were considered on the same level as vaisyas and sudras. The brahmanas and kstriyas of those days were so elevated that women were no doubt on an inferior level. But in Kali-yuga, men have degraded to the level o the women, everyone being sudra, and cannot anymore pose themselves as highly superior.
* Prabhupada: "Nowadays, ladies, they can understand." BG 4.10 Calcutta Sept 23, 74
This quote compliments and supports the one above it. (kalau sudra sambhava)
WOMEN, FREEDOM AND INDEPENDENCE
When we tell polygamists that they are confusing the word "protection" with the word "control," without letting you in on it, they immediately switch tracks to "freedom," claiming women should not have any. It is simply another angle on "control" and has nothing to do with freedom or protection. Lets take a closer look at it. Their reasoning for this is that women will just go wild if they are given their freedom or independence.
Polygamists do not understand the difference between Prabhupada's instructions for societal varnashrama-dharma and his instructions for transcendental Krishna Consciousness for the initiated devotee. Nor do they understand the difference between instructions for previous yugas and for this age. Therefore they misuse quotes to try to get a husband to control, thus the "good 'ol boys club." Yet in pure Krishna Consciousness Prabhupada himself did not behave in such ways. What these men are not understanding is that in this age of kali, women have taken shelter of their spiritual master and are therefore not to be controlled by husband. Reality check. It has been men who have gone wild in this movement with sexual abuse, hitting of wife, breaking bones, molesting children and so on. (Not all men have this problem.) It is time such men should be controlled. Polygamy is simply a new strain of men going wild. They have no one to answer up to and need an authority.
Women do not want freedom to use the way polygamists would use it (wild). Women want true freedom - to become a better devotee, to do devotional service, and they don't need a man looming over them to make sure they don't run after illicit sex, etc. This shows how much disrespect these polygamists have toward their godsisters, wives, women in general - none. They are misogynists, not spiritual men. Such polygamists can't imagine that she would not mis-use her freedom the way he would (and is). However, she does not need a man to *keep an eye on her* as they like to think, because she is all ready being watched by Prabhupada and women take that seriously. Having taken shelter of Prabhupada women are all ready controlling their senses, and this is not to say that men can't, it is only to say that polygamists can.'t :-) Or won't. After all, they are busy contemplating the objects of sense gratification therefore someone should keep an eye on THEM.
The fact is, such men are afraid of independent women. She makes them look fallen. She can't be controlled or manipulated by a man anymore and they loose their power, which they are very attached to. Never mind that the power is given to Prabhupada, they want it all. Independent women could make strides to help this movement, if such men did not stand in the way. Of course, that again, would make them look bad. If there is something to be accomplished which is deserving of credit, it either has to come their way or they will just block woman from doing it, and it therefore is not accomplished.
One wonders if preachers of the male superiority doctrine are envious that a woman will not follow them and take shelter of them to the degree she will with Srila Prabhupada.
"Disciple" also means one who also gives up his freedom. Such men should not think this giving up of freedom and independence is meant only for women. It is for men too.
WOMEN AND EQUALITY
Some men have a hard time accepting the idea that woman are equal. They hide behind Vedic scriptures that apply to different age and different circumstances and the reason for this, in truth, is that it usually has to do with their manhood rather than their spirit soul. Therefore it needs to be understood that equality does not mean a man looses his manhood if he accepts women as equal, and a woman must not become like a man to be equal. They are different, yes, but still equal. After all, kalau sudra sambhavat: in this age of kali- yuga, everyone is sudra. However, the idea is to get beyond these bodily designations and treat everyone right.
One may also notice polygamists quoting verses where Prabhupada said women are not equal but nondevotee men tell women they are equal to use them for sex indulgence. What I have noticed in quotes about this topic is that such men were lying to the women, telling them they were equal when they never believed it. This was just a ploy by men filled with lust to try to turn women into prostitutes. After all, what do such men do with their freedom? Look for much sex. So assuming women will respond in the same way, that is, run after sex, they lie and tell her they believe she is equal. However, not all men who believe in the equality of women are lying.
Also, it only worked on a partial basis, as sex is NOT what most WOMEN want to do when they get their freedom, especially devotee women who have all ready taken shelter and protection of Srila Prabhupada. They need to show more respect to their godsisters. Of course, if they are lusting after her they will have a hard time seeing her as godsister, mother or daughter. This needs to be cured.
Again, you will not hear the *other* points Prabhupada has to say about the equality of women from those who believe in male superiority. (Or shall we say, believe that they are Gods gift to women. <g>) I will present them here. Let it be known that it seems there are different definitions of the word "equality." Some believe it means *the same as.* Others feel it means *equal treatment - equal to but different from.* This may be a more current definition an dit is the one I use. It is illusion to think women have to become men to be equal and further illusion to think they would want to!
"We are Vaishnava's. We are not concerned with male of female position in life. That is simply bodily concept of life. It is not spiritual. Whether one is male or female, it does not matter, simply chant Hare Krishna and follow the four regulative principles and your life will be perfect." (letter to Jennifer, 1975)
* Srila Prabhupada: '"You dance, she dances. You sing, she sings, you cook, she cooks, there is no difference. You are the same in Krishna's eyes."
* "In the Bhagavad-gita we find that women are also *equally* competent *like the men* in the matter of Krishna consciousness movement." (SP letter to Himavati, 1969)
* When women were made to stand behind men in the back of the temple room instead of side by side as established formerly by Srila Prabhupada himself, women went on different occasions to Prabhupada who simply answered: "Why, the men on one side, the women on one side."
* When the women were made to offer flowers after the men during guru-puja, instead of simultaneously, Srila Prabhupada, informed by Ekayani, gave the same answer: "Why, the men from one side, the women from one side." (Ekayani)
Bhibavati asked Srila Prabhupada: "Should I live like in the Vedic times, and simply serve my husband and child?" Srila Prabhupada replied: "No, you have a talent as a writer, you should write articles for newspapers and propagate Krishna Consciousness." (Bhibavati)
* A devotee woman recalls that she was once in Srila Prabhupada's room for a darshan. There were hundreds of visiting devotees from neighboring temples. Before lecturing he insisted that the women (who were all at the back) come and sit up front on one side of the vyasasana. At least 5 sanyasi's and about 20 men had to move to make room for the women. Srila Prabhupada sat quietly for about 5 minutes while everyone was relocating themselves and getting situated.
* When a male devotee refused to be instructed by Jadurani, the head of the art department, because of her being a woman, Prabhupada called him in and ordered him to accept her instructions.
* From the Lilamrta, Vol.6, page 74-75:
"Returning in the car, Prabhupada asked for news of Indira Gandhi and India. Some of her policies had become highly controversial, and political opposition to her was mounting. The latest news was her emergency rule. 'If Indira Gandhi takes my advice,' Prabhupada said, 'then I can keep her on the post, and she can do greater service to India. Immediately the whole public will give her support."
'What would your advice to her be?' asked Brahmananda Swami.
'My first step,' said Prabhupada, 'will be to capture all the hoarders and distribute the grains free . . . If she can supply all consumer goods free to the poor for the time being, then immediately the whole population will like her. And the hoarders should be exemplarily punished. Then nobody will hoard. But to remain a leader she requires spiritual knowledge, otherwise it will be another disaster. If she wants to remain leader then she must be a spiritual person. She must become a Vaisnavi.' "
This conversation happened AFTER Srila Prabhupada's interview in Chicago where he mentions Indira Gandhi as an example of an incapable woman leader. However the point being made has often been misunderstood. It is not that he is saying because one is a woman she cannot be a leader, but because she (in this case, Indira) is not Krishna Conscious she should not be a leader. This applies to men too! But a Krishna conscious man or woman, they can be in charge. We also need to get clear on what our definition of Krishna Conscious is, but that is another story. :)
* Atreya Rsi asked Srila Prabhupada if women could be given great responsibilities. Srila Prabhupada answered, "Yes, if they are Krishna Conscious." Then he gave the example of Jahnava, the wife of Nityananda Prabhu, who took charge of the whole Vaishnava community after His departure. (Atreya Rsi)
It will be hard for those who have spent half a lifetime believing they are superior to admit they made a mistake. This is understandable. I pray that after reading Srila Prabhupada's instructions on transcendental Krishna Consciousness they will be humble enough to admit to this as a mistake and have a change of heart.
STUDY LINKS INCOME INEQUALITY WITH POOR HEALTH - SUE BAILEY
OTTAWA (CP) - The healthiest people aren't found in the richest countries but in those with the smallest gaps between rich and poor, says a new book.
"Researchers are now finding that, in the developed world, it s not the richest countries which have the best health but the most egalitarian," writes Toronto economic consultant Monica Townson in Health and Wealth: How Social and Economic Factors Affect Our Well Being.
The book, funded by Health Canada, was scheduled for release Wednesday by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. It examines how health has declined in countries where social inequality grew unchecked.
For example, policies introduced by Britain s former prime minister, Margaret Thatcher, drastically widened income inequality, Townson said in an interview.
"As a result, in some areas of the country, people s life expectancy dropped, which I think is pretty dramatic evidence that this is a key issue we need to think about."
Townson raises red flags for Canada and points out that some of its poorest citizens, Aboriginal Peoples, live seven years less on average than non-natives.
"It is evident that Canada has not yet adopted strategies for improving population health by addressing socio-economic conditions," Townson writes. "About 1.5 million children, or 21 per cent of all Canada s children, now live in low-income families. That s 47 per cent more than in 1989."
Support for the poor and unemployed has fallen in that time, while social and economic systems are increasingly entrenched and hard to challenge, Townson said. Tax breaks and transfer payments that used to stabilize the gap between rich and poor are now gone, she added.
Canada, like many other countries, has moved from its social roots of collective responsibility toward a take-care-of-yourself attitude. Economic and social policies that more equally distribute wealth are needed but Canada is moving in the wrong direction, she says. She also cited government efforts to develop a needs-based measure of poverty as an alternative to Statistics Canada s low-income cutoffs.
"Policy-makers concerned about population health . . . cannot make the problem of poverty go away by simply redefining it . . . so there are no poor people left."
Jean-Pierre Voyer of Human Resources Development Canada said that s not Ottawa s intention. "It s no attempt to edefine poverty by any means. We don t have an official definition of poverty in Canada."
Measuring fundamental needs - the basics required for a reasonable quality of life - is simply another way to assess how poor people live, he said.
Change, if it comes in time, will happen through social and economic policies that are more compassionate to the poor, Townson said.
GETTING OFF THE BODILY PLATFORM
Antya 14.22 Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu performed His customary daily duties, and at the usual time He went to see Lord Jagannatha in the temple.
Antya 14.23 As He viewed Lord Jagannatha from behind the Garuda column, hundreds and thousands of people in front of Him were seeing the Deity.
Antya 14.24 Suddenly, a woman from Orissa, unable to see Lord Jagannatha because of the crowd, climbed the column of Garuda, placing her foot on Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s shoulder.
Antya 14.25 When he saw this, Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s personal secretary, Govinda, hastily got her down from her position. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, however, chastised him for this.
PURPORT: Because Garuda is the carrier of Lord Visnu, he is the supreme Vaisnava. Therefore to touch his body with one’s feet or to climb the column of Garuda is certainly a vaisnava-aparadha, an offense to a Vaisnava. The woman was also offensive to Krishna by putting her foot on the shoulder of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Seeing all these offenses, Govinda very hastily made her get down.
Antya 14.26 Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu said to Govinda, “O adi-vasya [uncivilized man], do not forbid this woman to climb the Garuda-stambha. Let her see Lord Jagannatha to her satisfaction.”
PURPORT For an explanation of the word adi-vasya, refer to Antya-lila, Chapter Ten, verse 116.
Antya 14.27 When the woman came to her senses, however, she quickly climbed back down to the ground and, seeing Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, immediately begged at His lotus feet for forgiveness.
Antya 14.28 Seeing the woman’s eagerness, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu said, “Lord Jagannatha has not bestowed so much eagerness upon Me.
PURPORT The woman was so eager to see Lord Jagannatha that she forgot she was offending the feet of a Vaisnava by climbing the column of Garuda. She also neglected to consider that by putting her foot on the shoulder of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, she offended the Supreme Personality of Godhead. These are both grievous offenses that displease the Supreme Lord and Vaisnavas. She was so eager to see Lord Jagannatha, however, that she committed all these offenses obliviously. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu praised her eagerness; He regretted that Lord Jagannatha had not bestowed such great eagerness upon Him.
Antya 14.29 “She has fully absorbed her body, mind and life in Lord Jagannatha. Therefore she was unaware that she was putting her foot on My shoulder.
Antya 14.30 “Alas! How fortunate this woman is! I pray at her feet that she favor Me with her great eagerness to see Lord Jagannatha.”
POLYGAMY IS A MATERIAL DESIRE
"We should never desire to increase the depth of material enjoyment. Material enjoyment should be accepted only up to the point of the *bare necessities* of life and not more or less than that. To accept more material enjoyment means to bind oneself more and more to the miseries of material existence. More wealth, *more women* and false aristocracy are some of the demands of the *materially disposed man* because he has no information of the benefit derived from Vishnu worship. By Vishnu worship one can derive benefit in this life as well as in the life after death. Forgetting these principles, foolish people who are after more wealth, more wives, more children worship various demigods. The aim of life is to end the miseries of life and not to increase them." SB 1. 2.27
One may argue that these men ARE worshipers of Vishnu, not demi-gods. Yes, they are, but if they are missing the point to give up sense gratification, especially the highest sense gratification in the material world (sex), than the rest of the above quote would still apply. Besides, in kali-yuga we become forgetful and sometimes, gradually, we fall away from devotional service and correct consciousness without realizing it. We can give one recognition as a devotee, but there are different types and different levels. It is considered to be dangerous to associated with a materialistic devotee.
"According to scriptural injunctions, one is forbidden to engage with any woman other than ones wife. All other women are to be considered as one's mother. But in spite of such injunctions, a man is still inclined to have sex relationships with other women. These propensities are to be curbed, otherwise they will be stumbling blocks on the path of self-realization. As long as the material body is there, the necessities of the material body are allowed, but under rules and regulations. And yet we should not rely upon the control of such allowances. One has to follow those rules and regulations unattached to them, because practice of sense gratification under regulation may also lead one to go astray -- as much as there is the chance of an accident, even on the royal roads. Although they may be very carefully maintained no one can guarantee that there will be no danger, even on the *safest* road. The sense enjoyment spirit has been current a very *long, long time,* owing to material association. Therefore, *in spite of* regulated sense enjoyment, there is every chance of falling down; therefore any attachment for regulated sense enjoyment must also be avoided by all means. But attachment to Krishna Consciousness, or acting always in the loving service of Krishna, detaches one from all kinds of sensory activities. Therefore no one should try to be detached from Krishna Consciousness at any stage of life. The whole purpose of detachment from all kinds of sense attachment is ultimately to become situated on the platform of Krishna Consciousness." BG 3. 34.
Polygamists may claim that taking on more than one woman is regulated sense gratification, but we see here even regulated sense gratification is risky. To do so with one woman, that is more about getting through life, but to take on many? How is THAT bare necessities? It's not.
"For the living entity who desires to return to Godhead, material desires are impediments." BG 1.22 Purport
Polygamy is a material desire to lord it over large numbers of women, to win in the *battle* of the sexes (thus complimenting the male false ego), and to get the highest pleasure in the material world from many of women. Bas. Clearly polygamy is a mundane desire.
CULTURE AND SOCIETY
While the polygamists keep screaming "It's Vedic culture, culture, culture," we are more interested in what is transcendental. Let's look at other points Prabhupada has made about culture.
"A Vaisnava, therefore, can accept a bona fide disciple from any part of the world without any consideration of caste and creed and promote him by regulative principles to the status of a pure Vaisnava who is *transcendental to* brahminical culture." SB 2.4.18
PURPORT: By the mercy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, even an inexperienced boy with *no* educational culture *can be saved* from the ocean of nescience, which is full of various types of philosophical doctrines that are like dangerous aquatic animals. The philosophy of the Buddha, the argumentative presentations of the jnanis, the yoga systems of Patanjali and Gautama, and the systems of philosophers like Kanada, Kapila and Dattatreya are dangerous creatures in the ocean of nescience. By the grace of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu one can have real understanding of the *essence* of knowledge by avoiding these *sectarian* views and accepting the lotus feet of Krishna as the ultimate goal of life. Let us all worship Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu for His gracious mercy to the conditioned souls." Adi Lila ch 2, text 1
"If, however, one is fortunate enough to transcend the designation of birth in a society or community by being elevated to the standard of spiritual identity, than he is sva-dharma, or duty, is solely that of serving the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The actual duty of one who is advanced in Krishna Consciousness is to serve the Lord. As long as one remains on the bodily concept of life, he may act according to the duties of social convention, but if one is elevated to teh spiritual platform, he must simply serve the Supreme Lord., that is the real execution of sva-dharma." SB 3.28.2
"My dear Friend, if you desire to enjoy the company of material society, friendship and love, then please do not go to see this smiling boy Govinda, who is standing on the bank of the Yamuna and playing His flute, His lips brightened by the beams of the full moonlight." Krishna Book
POLYGAMISTS DEMAND: WOMEN MUST REMAIN SHY!!!!!!!
Polygamists insist that women should remain shy. While I certainly am not advocating rudeness we must notice that shyness is a quality of the mundane material body and not so important as transcendence. If Prabhupada found shyness to be so very important why did he send women out on the streets on sankirtana, to talk to men, do distribute books to strangers, to go out into the world like this? Such men may make (false) claims that he only wanted his western devotee women to do this, or that it was temporary, but where is their proof? Show that to me in writing, and it must be very clear, no wishy washy mis-use of scripture or quotes. Prabhupada never said that. The instruction for women to preach and to preach out in the world was for all women regardless of birth, regardless of country, and for all of eternity.
We must also realize that keeping women shy is a way to keep them under a polygamists thumb instead of letting women get off the bodily platform and advance spiritually. It seems they want so much shyness from her that she is really paranoid and/or guilt ridden, thus they can control her.
It is also a male fantasy to have all women submit to them and remain shy in their presence, making them feel so great, grandiose, and making them feel their *maleness* This whole game is just that - a game - a game of bodily concept.
In addition, polygamists want women to remain immature 14 year old girls. They do not want them to grow up and become women with wisdom. An adult relationship is something polygamists avoid at all costs. Can't control an adult, and just might have to look in the mirror too. :)
KEEPING THE WIFE AT HOME AND VEDIC - NO BOOK DISTRIBUTION????
Polygamists are criticising women who did not stay home 24 hours a day to raise their children and therefore try to make the women look like irresponsible, unloving mothers. Nonsense! It was the male authorities in this movement who sent the women out on sankirtana too long, the men who taught the philosophy of *renounce them, they are only bags of stool anyway* and so on. The women did not like this and eventually left! It was the women who spoke up or acted to protect their children, not the men! This blaming of women by polygamists is cruel and inaccurate. It, again, is to get control over women, to keep her home every minute of every day and so he can keep an eye on her. Let us not go from one extreme to the other! Women can go out and preach or hold down a job and still take good care of her child, as they already have succeeded in being better mothers. And where have the fathers been? So do not criticize the women in this way, just to advocate control and co-wivery. It simply is not true.
While some men continue to selectively quote Prabhupada, indicating they are a strict follower of his, one of the (many) points they omit is that Prabhupada also had women go out on the streets and talk to men to distribute his books. What Vedic man is *allowing,* what to speak of encouraging, what to speak of helping, his wife to do that? Will they baby-sit so she can distribute books? Will they cook lunch for the children so she is freed to do devotional service at the temple? These *Vedic* men seem to pick and choose instructions. They are trying to create this Vedic culture, keeping the wife at home, controlled and isolated from others, away form all the *inferior* devotees, and taking many privileges for themselves. What such men are doing is not always in accordance with Prabhupada's instruction. Association is 90% of our Krishna Consciousness. If polygamists are mostly associating with other polygamists they will never hear other points of view, they will never be able to give up their lust (and we all know that is the real problem, regardless of their claims). The truth is, this isn't about Krishna Consciousness as they wish to lead one to believe, it is about the battle of the sexes. Man wishes to dominate woman. Has the tone of , "Me tarzan, you Jane." <g>
"My Dear Trai das, Please accept my blessings. I am in receipt of your letter dated December 2, 1973. Thank you very much for pushing on our book distribution program so enthusiastically. Kindly offer all the devotees there my deepest gratitude for their wonderful service in this connection. I understand from Karandhara that you are one of the most staunch supporters and workers for distributing our books and I assure you that it is the highest service to my Guru Maharaja. Thank you very much." SPL 8:12:73
"There is no competition. Every word is for the good of human society. Every word, each and every word. Therefore we stress so much in the book distribution. Somehow or another, if the book goes in one hand, he will be benefited. At least he will see, 'Oh, they have taken so much price. Let me see what is there.' If he reads one sloka, his life will be successful. If he reads one sloka, one word. This is such nice things. Therefore we are stressing so much, 'Please distribute book, distribute book, distribute book.' A greater mrdanga. We are chanting, playing our mrdangaIt is heard within this room or little more. But this mrdanga will go home to home, country to country, community to community, this mrdanga. So it is advised nr-loke. Nr-loke means the human form of body, in the human society. We don't discard that 'This American Society' or 'This European Society' 'This is Indian Society' ..... No, all human being. All human being. It doesn't matter what he is." SB 1974 Lecture
This says a lot! First, it point out how the mrdanga cannot reach as far as the books, so we must all find a way to get the books out there. (Polygamists ought to try it. It's purifying!) Secondly, Prabhupada further points out India society, American, etc., all are just human being, so no one should get puffed up thinking Hindu or India is better. Thirdly, polygamists who are claiming such a concern for society and a desire to help it, thus they wish to marry many women, should instead help society by distributing Prabhupada's books. This is the highest way to benefit the society and from what I have observed, not one of these so-called *advanced* polygamists go out on book distribution.
"So we want accomodations for at least forty men and *women* which will constitute the Sankirtana Party." SPL to Sriman Radharama Sharanji 70-6-25
"Jaudarani has now become a nice *preacher,* I have report from Satsvarupa that she gives lectures very nicely. If we open a pavilion, I shall take Jaudarani also at that time so she will deliver nice lectures." SPL Mahapurusa, 1968
"I am especially pleased to learn that you are introducing my books as textbooks in the *colleges.* We especially have to try to attract the *educated* young men *and women* in your country so that in future there will be many strong *leaders* to keep our Krishna Consciousness Movement strong." SPL, Govinda dasa, New York, 4/7/73
"This is a *new thing* in the history of the sankirtana movement. In India all the acaryas and their dependents later on only acted from the man's side. Their wives were at home because that was the system from *old times.* BUT in Bhagavad-gita we find that women are also *equally* competent like the men in the matter of Krishna Consciousness movement. Please therefore carry on these missionary activities, and prove it by practical example that there is no bar for anyone in the matter of preaching Krishna Consciousness." SPL to Himavati 69-12-20
Yes, Prabhupada has said that HE started a new thing. One should not jump the spiritual master, thinking they can do what the previous acaryas did. To claim one is traditional but to go against Prabhupada's instructions for women to behave in transcendental ways is not traditional at all. It is mundane Hinduism. We are only interested in Prabhupada's traditions for us. Stop the speculation in the name of being better. No one has a better idea than Prabhupada.
BRAHMACARINI ASHRAMAS AREN'T VEDIC
Polygamists are now saying that brahmacarini ashramas aren't Vedic and should be shut down. However, Prabhupada started them and not on a temporary basis. It is kali-yuga, things are going to go downhill. Where will the women move in if there are no brahmacarini ashramas? Maybe these men think the women will move in with them or their polygamist friends if they can only close the brahmacarini ashramas. They wish. Women don't want to move in with men, they want to move in a temple and serve God. Or possibly they think they can create a system better than the one Prabhupada created? So, we can see what their vested interests are with this desire to end brahmacarini ashramas. The movement will stop growing under such circumstances!
Let Prabhupada decide what is Vedic for US. No one should skip the acarya and think they know how to do something better, nor think they are so advanced that they can follow the former great acarya's. Prabhupada is OUR acarya for this age of kali-yuga, and knows what is best for us.
"My Dear Satsvarupa, Regarding your various questions. First let us understand that polygamy cannot be permitted in our society. Legally it is impossible and neither are there many of our devotees who are prepared to assume the responsibility for many wives. Therefore as I have suggested previously as they do in Christian religion they have so many convent where the women stay and they receive protection. The point is that the women must be protected and it is the duties of the leaders of our society to see that this is carried out." SPL, Melbourne, 10 February, 1973
Here, Srila Prabhupada talks about how very pleased that Yamunda dd and Palika dd want to open a brahmacarini ashrama.
Bombay - 13 November, 1975 - Los Angeles
My dear Palika devi dasi,
Please accept my blessings. I am in due receipt of your letter dated November 27, 1975. Yes, the separation of man and woman is desirable. If Yamuna and yourself can develop such an institution of a woman's asrama, that will be nice. You are all elderly devotees. I think that this will be a good idea.
If you produce milk, you should not drink milk very much. Rather, you should save it and convert it into ghee and then sell it to the householders and centers and thus maintain your asrama. The excess quantity of ghee may be exchanged by trade. Kirtana is our first duty. The Deity worship should be simple and the eating should be as meager as possible.
I hope this meets you in good health.
Your ever well wisher,
A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
Although Prabhupada calls these women *elderly,* if we stop and look at their ages, they were not very old. So what does he mean? In my opinion, he saw them as *senior* devotees. Therefore any age woman may take shelter in such an ashrama, or start one if they are strong devotee. Sorry polygamists, we just don't need you. <g> We rather Prabhupada and Krishna.
Also, not only does Prabhupada authorize brahmacarini ashramas, but women may also renounce, if they wish.
Prabhupada (speaking of Gurudasa's wife, Yamuna): "His wife has also sanyasi, renounced. Have you seen her? She has cut her hair, white dress, living alone in temple." London room conversation, 1976
While some persons in Krishna Consciousness find it to be more conductive for their spiritual life to get less entangled into the material affairs, less of sexual affairs till ceasing it altogether, some other people find that older they are getting the more sex with young girls they are desiring, claiming that this is more auspicious for their advancement in Krishna Consciousness! One who is rather glorified throughout the Srimad-bhagavatam is not Daksa, but Narada Muni. Daksa might be proud on his sexual potency, so might be perhaps also some of our polygamists. But that's not the kind of potency that we in KC are admiring, really. Let this be known. We are not interested in loopholes that lead to more sex, but in going back to Godhead which means celibacy!
Polygamy - by Praharana dasi, former co-wife
1) From a preaching point of view, polygamy in ISKCON would make us the laughing stock of society.
2) Intelligent, moralistic people who are looking for spiritual life will NOT join this movement. You will get plenty of "invested" men however.
3) Allowing even limited polygamy will lead to further abuses and will eventually fragment the movement ( even more than it is now ) along traditional ( quasi-vedic ) vs progressive ( moralistic, ethical ) lines.
4) Several godsisters I have been in touch with favour setting up women's ashrams separate from ISKCON, where older, retired women can serve peacefully without the influence of these destructive people or the GBC who have done nothing to legislate our protection from male exploitation.
5) Even if polygamy were acceptable for societal reasons it is still not spiritually tenable. If there is an opportunity for more sense gratification and a chance to overlord over vulnerable people, there will always be agitation and never peace in the household. It will always be a threat to any wife, no matter how submissive. For the man, it will be an endless temptation.... not compatible with fixed- up devotional service.
6) Raising devotee children and learning to live in a Vaisnava partnership of mutual values, duties and expectations, teaches us humility, selflessness, responsibility and eventually peaceful renunciation.... that's what it's all about.
I think it is important for the male devotees who see the issues clearly to take the lead in pushing for appropriate social reforms - genuine protection, and dignity for ISKCON women. Women need to feel safe and confident in using their god-given talents to push on Srila Prabhupada's movement - whatever they may be .We don't want to feel like sexual objects. There are so few of us.... no devotee should be compromised so that someone else's false-ego is stroked.
This is nonsense. It is time for the GBC to legislate these basic human rights. The mature ISKCON men should push them to do so.
This is Kali yuga. As one woman friend of mine said " The Kali Yuga version of the Srimad Bhagavatam is going to have a lot to say about men and how they used their so-called superior intelligence!!"
POLYGAMY IS NOT ABOUT GOD
Polygamy is cultural, it is not about Krishna. Polygamists may ADD Krishna to it, they may include spiritual life, but it is PREDOMINATELY material, not predominately spiritual as they would have you believe. It clearly is not a requirement to become Krishna Conscious.
It is not that this so called woman protection is about Krishna Conscious either. Take away the sexual gratification these men will get from polygamy and we shall see how much interest they TRUTHFULLY have in women protection. No, they are maya nonsenses.
Feel free to call the police and report any polygamist activities you see, that you are CERTAIN of. Take the time to do the investigative work and do not speculate. With that done, underaged girls, adult women, etc., should be protected by reporting this. These men may import such women who will do anything to come to America. It is an illicit activity to have more than one wife and just because they add God doesn't make it right. We all know they are not advanced enough in this age. They are hiding behind God, so call them up on their nonsense. I am not telling anyone what to do. The choice must be your own. I only know that if I find out, factually, that someone is practicing polygamy, I will not be afraid to call the police. It can be done anonymously too. The choice is yours.
We want ourselves, our friends, our daughters and our SONS to be normal. We do not need this polygamy nonsense. It will cause us to loose normalcy what to speak of morality.
Recently at a Sunday Feast I met a nice devotee from Utah. She told me about the Mormons and the big donation they gave to our temple. I was surprised, thinking they would see us as pagans or heathens. But apparently not. So I took the conversation further and asked her, "Aren't the Mormons of Utah polygamists?" She told me that the most of the Mormons who practice polygamy live out in the boonies, away from the population, and that their own people, the other Mormons, do not like them as they are marrying their cousins and so on. Of those who who aren't intermarrying, the Mormons still disapprove of their activities. They have learned the hard way. Must we go down the same path? If we allow polygamy in our movement who can guarantee that there will not be any perversion? Look at our past gurukulas that were supposed to be the highest and tell me there will not be an increase of sexual perversion when a man has more than one woman under one roof, it has become acceptable, and most or all of her power has been taken away from her. We want to be normal thank you.
Not so long ago I received an email from "Female Polygamy." They were devotees who gave a long list of all the benefits of women taking on more than one husband. This was real. Now, if we let this male polygamy in the door, with kali yuga men thinking they are as good as the men they read in the Holy Scriptures, it is only a matter of time until women state that they can do what Draupadi did. Thus, male polygamists, give it up for the sake of our movement, if nothing else. And get honest. Stop telling us it is not your lust. No one believes you anyway.
"While contemplating the object of the senses, a person develops attachment for them, and from such attachment lust develops, and from lust anger arises. From anger complete delusion arises, and from delusion bewilderment of memory. When memory is bewildered, intelligence is lost, and when intelligence is lost one falls down again into the material pool." BG 2:62-63
Yes, these polygamists have contemplated the object of the senses (many wives), and have become so "attached" to it that if one disagrees with them they become angry and bash anyone who dares block their sense gratification. From that anger they go into denial and delusion, convincing themselves they are right, the rest of the entire movement is wrong, and as a result they loose their memory . Loss of intelligence follows, since they no longer have any room in their brains for thoughts that do not defend their so called right to multitudes of women, although having sex on the mind always results in loss of intelligence.
"Initiation does not mean they have completed all their spiritual perfection and now they can relax but it means now they have begun spiritual life. If they are true to their vows, they will find all perfection in this life and be eligible to go back to Godhead." SPL 7-25-75
"Kalau sudra sambhava." SB 4.12.49-50, which is also quoted MANY other places. Prabhupada does not make this point only once but over and over and over again.
POLYGAMISTS ARE DISTRACTING WOMEN FROM DEVOTIONAL SERVICE AND SPIRITUAL ADVANCEMENT
The polygamists are doing their best to get in the way of any REAL and substantial spiritual advancement for women, as the only way they *allow* women to advance is to surrender unto them, as if they are so qualified. The difficulty is, they are running all around the net preaching their lusty philosophy as if it was religious. If women remain silent, hoping it will will away, the polygamists will simply take advantage of that good nature and grow bigger, grow stronger. Silence is ignorance, so we must preach against their maya but they are working very hard to make it difficult for women focus on Krishna and are making sure we focus on them.
Thank you for reading this web page, no matter how long it took you. :-) Hopefully you discovered some facts that you did not know. All glories to Srila Prabhupada!
Prtha devi dasi
Anyone who is SUPPORTIVE of the content of this web page, please feel free to write me. I may post your letter here. GHQ, polygamists, etc., don't waste your time or mine. I won't read your letter anyway.