Sripada Avadhuta Maharaja’s allegiance to BSG has been clear for a long time. For his part, BSG, since his joining Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math in January of 2000, has done very well by the largess Avadhuta Maharaja (“BBA”) has bestowed upon him.
In his blog “For My Disciples” (10/22/13) BSG writes about the implications of living off the work of others:
If someone wants to preach independently, I have no objection, but not as a parasite of the preaching of Avadhut Maharaja and his dedicated followers. To criticize him and then suck his blood is hypocrisy.
The charges were directed to Sripada Bharati Maharaja. But his income is not received from the hand of Avadhuta Maharaja. And Bharati Maharaja is serving in Russia as a rtvik for Sripada Acharya Maharaja. How then can it be said he is preaching independently?
Considering the close relationship between BSG & BBA, guru/disciple, beneficiary/benefactor it is little wonder that BSG, as a means to drive Acharya Maharaja from Russia in support of his benefactor Avadhuta Maharaja, might embark on a proxy war against Bharati Maharaja in order to avoid an unseemly direct confrontation with Acharya Maharaja. After all, it was he who generously consented (as the head of the International Acharya Board and Sevaite President Acharya of SCSM, Navadwipa) to appoint BSG to the post of an acharya within SCSM.
However, unseemly dealings are not out of bounds for those who would even turn against the predecessor Acharya of the Mission he joined, just ten years before the Acharya’s disappearance.
It seems Acharya Maharaja, who had been introduced to Russia as the Worldwide Acharya and only successor to Srila Govinda Maharaja (plan A), was now becoming a liability for Avadhuta Maharaja’s change from plan A to plan B. The new plan B called for the elimination of the Worldwide Acharya in order to establish himself, BBA as the only acharya for Russia.
The first step in plan B; eliminate Acharya Maharaja’s rtvik, Sripada Bharati Maharaja, by any means necessary. Intimidation was a card BSG knew how to play, so he played it. It would send a strong message to Acharya Maharaja, “Look what I’ve done to this sannyasi, I’ve ruined him, your rtvik. If you don’t do as I want, you will be next.”
Thus, the “For My Disciples” blog was intended to announce BSG’s excommunication of Sripada Bharati Maharaja from SCSM. And, it would show the world something else: BSG was now so powerful that he alone could do this, whereas previously it took the entire IAB to excommunicate a member of SCSM. At least that’s the way my excommunication was handled.
In his “Ultimatum To BN Acharya Maharaja” BSG made it clear he thought he was even powerful enough to singlehandedly remove the Sevaite President Acharya of Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math Navadwipa, the “Central Math”, and replace him with someone more “suitable.”
I will convince the world that you, in no way, shape or from, represent Srila Guru Maharaja and the Math that he conceived. Don’t dream for a moment that I am incapable of doing this.
. . . I will actively and openly seek a suitable replacement
With Avadhuta Maharaja’s prior attempt to establish BSG as the “preceptor of all members of our Mission”, signaling his position as superior to that of Acharya Maharaja and Bharati Maharaja, it would be better that the preceptor of the Mission inaugurate the new plan B. No one would dare question BSG who BBA described in this way “the most qualified and possessing knowledge of vaisnava-siddhanta is Srila Gosvami Maharaj”. This tactic would also allow for Avadhuta Maharaja to appear innocent and free of any involvement in the matter.
Although Bharati Maharaja was the one tagged with the charge, if anyone is preaching “independently”, it must be BSG who led the independence revolt against Srila Govinda Maharaja’s Last Will and Testament, as verified in the letter below from Avadhuta Maharaja, where he writes:
Srila Goswami Maharaj was the first man who supported unconditionally Srila Acharya Maharaj and presented him as a worldwide leader to the Acharya Board . . .. And even fought about this matter with Giri Maharaj at the very first meeting of the Acharya Board.
Srila Govinda Maharaja never intended for Acharya Maharaja to be the “worldwide acharya” BSG fought so hard to make him. Now, more than three years after my refusal to accept Acharya Maharaja as anything more than the acharya of the Navadwipa Math and “Indian group”, BSG writes in his “Ultimatum To BN Acharya Maharaja”:
. . . according to Srila Gurudeva, you are the successor of Nabadwip Math and “Indian group.” That you are the “worldwide” successor is hype, and you know it. And anybody with half a brain and their eyes open can see through your ruse.
How generous of BSG to commend me as being the only one with “half a brain and their eyes open.” Well, better late than never.
But that means Goswami Maharaja is accusing the other acharyas, who deferred to Acharya Maharaja (“BNA”) as the only successor to Srila Govinda Maharaja, who placed only BNA’s photo after that of Srila Govinda Maharaja in the parampara on the altars of their temples and, refusing to initiate, acted merely as Acharya Maharaja’s rtvik, of being too stupid to see through the ruse and, when the brains were passed out, received even less than the more than half given to me.
Sad to say, BSG is attempting to deceive us once again with his analysis of events. It wasn’t BNA who created the “hype” and the “ruse”; it was BSG, who “was the first man who supported unconditionally Srila Acharya Maharaj and presented him as a worldwide leader to the Acharya Board.”
Even with his less than half a brain (BSG’s words, not mine), Avadhuta Maharaja can still recall who created the “hype” and the “ruse.”
Or maybe BSG is just confused about the facts. Even simple mathematics bewilders him. For example, after reading Srila Gurudeva’s Will that specifically names six acharyas, Goswami Maharaja thought the total number was one (BNA). After I corrected his work, along with that of the other acharyas, they all came to understand, through my patient explanation, that one cannot equal six. Only six equals six.
Later BSG got confused again. He thought the number of acharyas was seven (six + BSG), when, due to his fertile imagination, he thought he saw his name listed in the Will with the six acharyas Gurudeva had actually named to succeed him.
As long as I was present to correct his math, BSG couldn’t figure out how he could get the correct answer, six acharyas, while he was still seeing seven.
Finally he arrived at the correct number by eliminating one (myself) from the six, making five, and then adding himself, bringing the total back to the correct number of six, but with the wrong persons. It seems he mistook the name Giri to be Goswami.
At least he finally got to the correct answer, six, even if his methods were unorthodox. For those interested, the simple formulas BSG used, could be represented thusly: 6=1, 1≠6, 6=6, 6+1=7, 6-1=5, 5+1=6
It would have been much easier to just accept the facts of life by hearing about them from a higher authority, Srila Govinda Maharaja. Then BSG could have easily understood, six equals six; not one, or five, or seven.
One final note. As I read Avadhuta Maharaja’s explanation of events; conspicuously absent is any explanation as to why he felt the need to excommunicate me for some very minor “breaking the Vaisnava etiquette”, as he now calls it, although he fully supports, condones and encourages BSG’s use of public intimidation and public humiliation (any means necessary) to coerce the President Sevaite Acharya of the Navadwipa Math to do his bidding, just as Avadhuta Maharaja still supports BSG’s use of these tactics at the first “Acharya Board” meeting to demand all the acharyas named by Gurudeva reject his Last Will and Testament and follow BSG.
BSG used the same bullying, intimidating tactics with me, as did the other four members of the IAB, including Sripada Acharya Maharaja. My response to them may be seen in my email to Acharya Maharaja and copied to all of them. This is a portion of that email:
Date: February 9, 2011 7:55:33 AM EST
When you used your gang of five to make mischief with Srila Gurudeva’s Will and then tried to bully me into submission you should not be surprised by the result.
. . . I must conclude, thereby, you do not believe “this matter” is a waste of time. What you believe is that promoting the view that favors one Acharya and opposes the formation of the Acharya Sabha is productive, while other views, such as mine, are a waste of time.
Maharaja, you and your gang of five bullies challenged me to a fight. I accepted your challenge. Now you say fighting is a waste of time. But I like to fight, and now that the odds are six to one against me, it is even more interesting and enlivening for me.
But, I am not a bully, or mean spirited. If you have had enough, you can stop the fight by following the proposal I made to Sripada Janardana Maharaja (email of Jan. 27).
. . . The above proposal was first made at our meeting of April 7, more than ten months ago. It is a reasonable proposal. If you had accepted it then, you would have prevented the waste of so much time on this matter and we would all be working together to “preach Krishna Consciousness”.
Maharaja, please do not worry that I “will not get any energy to preach Krishna consciousness.” I am feeling very energized. Your “Acharya Board” is “like the sun and I am like a solar charged battery”. The more nonsense you propose, the more energy I get to oppose it.
This is the only way I know to deal with bullies, you must not give in to their demands. If you give in to them, they will demand more and more each time they threaten you.
Whatever his faults may be, I wish Sripada Acharya Maharaja had not given in to the Piper’s alternative to his charming tune, intimidation. I don’t say there can’t be cooperation between one acharya and another, but it should be born of mutual admiration and respect, not intimidation and threats of using brute force to make one acharya cower in submission to another.
In a portion from Avadhuta Maharaja’s letter of explanation you will see he, like his preceptor BSG, is also coercing the Acharya of Navadwipa (emphasis added):
Most devotees willingly support Acharya Maharaj because of Gurudev but they don’t know that Gurudev told very clearly to Acharya Maharaj: “Will you fight, or will you run from the Math?” And Srila Acharya Maharaj promised to fight. And that really means to take care of devotees, His dieties and his Math. To do this it is necessary to adopt a good strategy and cooperate with God-brothers.
For anyone unfamiliar with BBA’s methods I will translate his coded message to Acharya Maharaja written as “it is necessary to . . . cooperate with God-brothers.”
The meaning is this; “Do what I want you to do, or suffer the consequences. I will accept no other alternative. What I want, you must do that, otherwise, I will unleash the preceptor of the Mission, who eats from my hand, and he will devour you.”
I consider after Srila Sridhara Maharaj and Srila Govinda Maharaj the most qualified and possessing knowledge of vaisnava-siddhanta is Srila Gosvami Maharaj. Therefore, remembering that our parampara is siksa-parampara, I invoke all devotees, irrespective of their position, to follow his spiritual leadership. I declare that I consider Srila Goswami Maharaj as the preceptor of all members of our Mission, both disciples of Srila Govinda Maharaj, and disciples of all of others Acaryas of our Mission.
— harekrishna.ru Jul 21, 2011
Avadhuta Maharaja’s letter explaining BSG’s attack on Acharya Maharaja
Dear Manasa Prabhu, thank you for your call.
It is very important for us to discuss this matter, so I’ve decided to answer some of your questions in writing. And I hope my answers will benefit you and other devotees of our family, especially disciples of Srila Acharya Maharaj.
I am not a perfect follower or practitioner myself but I’ve been blessed by the mercy of Guru and Vaishnavas and trying to assist in leading our Mission. So, I have to tell you the truth from my point of view.
First of all, we must remember that we are dealing with a conflict of devotees, not of ordinary people. Narada chastised Vedavyas and disciples of Vedavyas may not be happy with that, yet he is Narada, whatever he does, brings the auspicious result. So, as it is said in our Scriptures, those devotees should not participate in the fight of senior Vaisnavas and should be neutral to keep their religious principles.
I cannot be 100% neutral because I am involved on a deep level in our Math’s management. But I should say a few words to make situation clear for you.
Srila Goswami Maharaj was the first man who supported unconditionally Srila Acharya Maharaj and presented him as a worldwide leader to the Acharya Board and Srila Gurudev. And even fought about this matter with Giri Maharaj at the very first meeting of the Acharya Board. Can you say why? He was thinking about benefit of our Mission, not of any individuals. So, since that time we’ve initiated several hundred people and have installed the portrait of Srila Acharya Maharaj in all of our centers and temples.
Unfortunately, Srila Acharya Maharaj had not recognised the fact we gave him unconditional support, he refused to cooperate with us, ie: The Primary Trust board – even on a very basic level. Gurudev had a very clear idea about the Indian management in the future. And as you all know, Mahananda Prabhu (Madhusudan Maharaj) was supposed to be the Prime-Minister (as Secretary) and Mangal Maharaj was supposed to keep the finances and provide reports to the Advisor Board of the Primary Trust, i.e. senior members of our Mission personally appointed by Srila Gurudev: Janardan Maharaj, Ashram Maharaj, Goswami Maharaj, myself. Please, don’t mistake Primary Trust with Acharya Board. Primary Trust, according to Srila Gurudev, was envisioned by Srila Gurudev to deal with problems, especially for defense of our Mission because the war for the Math started even while he was present personally.
“The Primary Trust…trustees shall assist the President Sevaite Acharya in the governing of the Mission and the authority of this Primary Trust shall be supreme over any and all other Trusts.”
So Gurudev told us personally, if we think that Srila Acharya Maharaj will not be able to manage the situation, he’s willing to change him as a successor. But we’ve expressed our faith in Srila Acharya Maharaj and promised to Srila Gurudev that we will try to support him with full heart. And that’s what we did, myself and Goswami Maharaj and other Acharyas: stayed in Nabadwip, met with officials, developed a strategy and in the beginning we were winning and thought that we will have very bright future. But unfortunately we gave to Srila Acharya Maharaj the feeling that he has the absolute authority and, as Churchill said, “Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely”. So, Srila Acharya Maharaj, being under impression that he is the worldwide leader, started losing his common sense and was acting very unwisely, like Indra. One of the first mistakes he made: internally he stopped to give recognition not only to the Acharya Board members but to all the senior devotees, especially the Bengalis who had known him from the time when he was ‘Vinod Prabhu’ – the Math’s manager who had been sleeping in his office room and been known as a hard working devotee. (Srila Gurudev also commented, on numerous occasions that the manner in which Acharya Maharaj was dealing with the bengali devotees needed to change, or there would be problems in future … which we are seeing now)
Finally, Acharya Maharaj, being overwhelmed by his own greatness, stopped listening to the advices of qualified lawyers which were engaged in the matter by our side. Everyone who understood the situation explained that he should manage in low level courts and to surrender and to go to jail and to obtain bail. Actually, in that conflict several devotees went to jail for him: Mangal Maharaj, some Venezuelan devotee. Others were ready to go to jail but unfortunately Srila Acharya Maharaj did not accept the hard way. So he started to pay huge amounts of money to «powerful lawyers» and went to the Supreme Court in Delhi with the hope that money will make a miracle. But everyone knew that he is just buying time and making things more complicated for the future.
Finally, his strategy, based on several principles like “don’t trust anyone, especially senior Acharyas and devotees”, provided the result: he lost the good will of many good people who wanted full heartedly to help him to manage the situation, especially Indians who were brought into the picture with good intention and could be very resourceful and helpful for us in the future. So, everybody had to wait until we’ve received information that Kaikhali and Dum Dum are taken over by the opposition and they are planning to take over the Nabadwip Math. For all this time we dealt with Srila Acharya Maharaj exclusively with respect and honour. But now, at this time Goswami Maharaj lost his patience, because this Mission means something for him. In fact, it means everything to him.
Most devotees willingly support Acharya Maharaj because of Gurudev but they don’t know that Gurudev told very clearly to Acharya Maharaj: “Will you fight, or will you run from the Math?” And Srila Acharya Maharaj promised to fight. And that really means to take care of devotees, His dieties and his Math. To do this it is necessary to adopt a good strategy and cooperate with God-brothers. So, for four years we have only heard one thing from him: «Don’t worry, I’ll manage.» We have no access to the official documents, we don’t know who are real legal trustees of the Math and we feel that we on a verge of losing the headquarters of our Indian Mission. So, Goswami Maharaj decided that the only way to draw the attention of Srila Acharya Maharaj is to give him a wake-up call and to remind him that he is Absolute only in the eyes of his own disciples, but in the eyes of Government he is the head of a religious institution, and in the eyes of his Bengali people he is a small guy who was brought up by the grace of Guru and Vaisnavas, as all of us.
So, somebody can consider that to be Vaisnava aparadha, but for me it is a wake-up call because we are what we are. And if we loose the proper attitude we can lose everything and that’s what the Scriptures actually shows us: the great gods like Siva and Brahma and sages like Durvasa Muni can make mistakes. They also have disciples, people worship them. But why are their mistakes publicly announced? To show that in this world no matter how great you are, you still can make mistakes due to your ego. Therefore I am not blaming Srila Acharya Maharaj and keeping quiet in this situation. I have no right to chastise him and I know that he is in a very painful and difficult stage, but we all have to face difficulties to improve our character. It is told that the character changes in the circumstances.
For Srila Acharya Maharaj it is a great chance to make a choice whether he has faith in lawyers and money or in Vaisnavas who have been chosen by Srila Gurudev to give him help. Personally I know that Srila Acharya Maharaj and Goswami Maharaj are now in good contact and will work out strategy to save our Mission. I’m sure that in couple of days all their fighting matter will go down and Acharya Maharaj will himself publicly announce that he made some mistakes and Goswami Maharaj publicly will ask him forgiveness for breaking the Vaisnava etiquette. Because all of them are great Vaisnavas and we will learn great lessons, which means there is no hope without mercy of Guru and Vaisnavas. The mercy of Guru and Vaisnavas is very clear to us. To get that mercy we should always keep association and service of saints and keep faith in Vaisnavas. And when they fight, we should be neutral and respectful, think that they have their own vision and adhikar which is beyond our puppy brains.
Hare Krishna, adios amigo’s and my dandavat to all the sincere readers.
Swami B.B Avadhut.
(Posted 12/8/13 on FB by Manasa Krishna dasa)