Regaining joy and equilibrium in Krishna Consciousness
With each struggle comes an opportunity to learn not only about myself but also how ones own actions impacts on others and how a balance in both means that I can encourage others whilst encouraging self; Srila Prabhupada after all wrote about the Science of Self Realisation, not others realisations (although learning from others is always experiential in spiritual progress especially if they have gone through the same type of difficulty)
Firstly and most controversially I came out of the mentorship system and disassociated myself from any of the courses as prescribed which has impacted on the way some interact with me.
When I first came into contact with the devotees it was wonderful, yes they mentored me in the Science of Krishna Consciousness although you would never have noticed it was so subtle. Over time you just wanted to help out and the reciprocation increased.
And over the years I’ve had many wonderful devotees who have in their own way mentored and encouraged me, and I’ve enjoyed their association and in some way serving them.
Notably in all instances their was loving exchanges and true friendship, no pushing in a singular one size fits all system but one were encouragement and progression is individualised.
This is something that personally I’ve tried to continue to do, it means taking time for each person, listening carefully and then spending time reading before making the suggestion based on real Vedic knowledge.
So reconnecting with real mentor and just enjoying their association.
In my dealings with others following their fine example has really helped
Now to be controversial again, and this those who encourage this particular system will no doubt be angry with this statement; but it’s something I personally feel, paid for courses lack real substance compared to those who like Srila Prabhupada give freely.
Srila Prabhupada and many senior devotees warn of dire consequences of hearing from professional recitor or one who charges, but then disconnect when forcing courses that are mandatory and charge.
I’ve sat in many amazing classes, house programs and again in the early days evening programs each had one thing in common they were free and in most cases I’ve left feeling fulfilled.
I’ve also replicated this in my own dealings with others and programmes, based on the audience needs, prasadam and no charge.
Over the years I’ve been moved to either give a little laxmi or to help out in some practical way, it was indeed a loving exchange. And over the years I’ve experienced a similar exchange which has encouraged me to do more.
I’ve also noted that when monetary exchanges are made the whole atmosphere changes and for me it looses its transandental potency, it becomes dry and unpalatable and indeed for me personally their appears to be little benefit.
After all one notes that in all the pastimes of Srila Prabhupada disciples not one starts with, well I booked on a course it was £15 and Srila Prabhupada came and gave class took some questions and left, it was so inspirational. NO!
When we listen to the pastimes of Srila Prabhupada disciples we hear of the loving exchanges, the morning walks, classes, the prasadam distribution; how Srila Prabhupada gave all this for free and out of deep love one immediately reciprocated, one was convinced and inspired.
This was the ISKCON I once knew, and one I’ve reconnected with, leaving the corporate ISKCON behind the one with an artificial mentorship system designed to make sure you do the paid courses.
This corporate ISKCON with paid jobs, were the accumulation of laxmi is the aim rather than Srila Prabhupada ISKCON which didn’t have paid jobs just maintenance and based solely on loving exchanges.
It was nice to be back in that true association, with amazing devotees who never ask for anything other than your association. I was also asked by all but the most senior devotees if I was going to give class and it was humbling to hear how much they benefited, all I’ve tried to do is share the same enthusiastic love that those real devotee mentors gave me.
Money corrupts and asking for money upfront before imparting what one considers essential for spiritual progress is something I’ve haven’t heard Srila Prabhupada disciples say that was their experience.
My joy in Krishna Consciousness is slowly returning
The joy of association is slowly returning
The joy of sharing with others is slowly returning
It’s returning simply because I’ve disconnected with corporate ISKCON
And reconnected with my real mentors
Those who are and will always be my ever well-wisher
And so the real loving exchanges can take place
And for me it doesn’t start with exchanging laxmi
One may at times reciprocate with laxmi, but the biggest reciprocation is when one uses the knowledge and loving exchanges to help others in their own path of Self Realisation in finding their real constitutional position as spirit soul and love of Krishna.
So I apologies for those who are angry or frustrated at my actions, but best stay with what I know works and in guidance and experience of those loving devotees I’ve had the privilege of associating with which is always sweet.
And ending of my real appreciation of those early days, those amazing devotees and those who have followed who’s enthusiastic sharing of love of Krishna continues to inspire, these humble disciples are the real mentors