Srila Giri Maharaja – “I . . . suggest you avoid me.”

March 20, 2018

My dandavats Prabhu Jagadananda dasa.

I just noticed the message you posted to me on Jan 7, this year in my facebook messages. It is now more than two months after you sent it. That should give you some indication of how seriously I take what I think of as gossipbook or rumorbook, but what is known to others as facebook.

You must not have known these aspects of my thinking, although I have tried to publicize them. Thus, you sent this current message to me via facebook instead of by email, as I prefer.

Please excuse me if you think me unreasonable, but I do not take this form of communication very seriously, especially when you write in a style similar to that used by juveniles (youths) to text each other, presumably, about who is the cutest boy or girl in their class and similar tripe. This writing style strikes me as one used with those one is extremely familiar with (a position I do not presume to enjoy with you) or with one to whom we wish to exhibit our disrespect. Personally, out of respect for them, I do not take such liberties even with my closest friends, even those who would certainly not object to such casual and familiar behavior on my part. I have not observed letters from our gurus being written to their Godbrothers, or even their disciples, in such a casual, nonchalant way. What I have observed is that their letters are written in a serious style showing due respect to the recipient. As a result of these observations, I have concluded we should attempt to follow their example. Nevertheless, as a courtesy to you, I am responding to your facebook message.

In the future, if you have something serious to say to me, please call me or email me.

You may be correct when you write “In your letter u stated that Giri M. took sanyas from Puri M.” But this is not the way to correct my errors or omissions. It is too vague. You don’t even say what letter of mine you are referring to, how you got my letter to read, the date of the letter, etc.

I assume, but am not certain, you are referring to something you read on our website:

If you want to offer a correction to something I’ve posted on our website you should do so as a “Comment” connected to the post. Then others will see it posted in the proper context and I will also be able to do the same.

I appreciate your offering this correction, but it will not be very effective unless made in the way I have outlined above.

Frankly, I don’t understand why you bother with me at all. Years ago you tried to drive a wedge between myself and Sriman Ramai dasa brahmachari. At the time he was our sole pujari for Sri Sri Guru Gauranga Gandharvika Giridharijiu. Nevertheless, you tried, and perhaps were successful, in convincing him he should leave this seva to the Deities and Guru Maharaja’s Math to, as I remember it, come and live with you, your wife and family. This took place around 1990 or so, so my recollection may not be perfect. But I do perfectly remember you referring to me in your letter to Ramai as “Cunning Giri” a term you used in the most derogatory sense possible.

I have never noticed anything about you that would make me think your opinion of me has ever changed or that it was different at any time in the past. In other words, you truly believe I am the most devious of persons and should, as the International Acharya Board’s (IAB’s) letter of censure demanded, be shunned as an offender, or at least a charlatan, cheater, etc. Indeed, from what little I know about your activities after Srila Govinda Maharaja’s disappearance, you appear to fully support the IAB despite their decision to reject the very essence of Srila Gurudeva’s Will, as contained in his selection of six acharyas to succeed him. Or, perhaps you support no one and are loyal to no current acharya and simply take shelter of whichever one is convenient for your own purposes. If so, I would again (as I have done previously) encourage you to take sannyasa and strike out on your own to preach the ideals you hold dear. If you are already doing that, then again, I don’t understand why you are bothering with me.

On Jan 1, 2012, the last time you sent a message to me, you reiterated your opinion that I was not one you, or anyone else, should trust when you wrote this to me:

“Please I thought u were honest.”*

The meaning of which is this: “I thought you were honest, but I was wrong; you are not honest.”

At another time, probably in the year 2010, I happened to notice a comment from you on facebook wherein you offered your judgement that I had stolen a book from Srimati Divya Shakti Devi and should return it to her. I have never stolen anything from that lady, much less a book she must have treasured as much as one signed by Srila Govinda Maharaja or Srila Sridhara Maharaja, as I think the accusation was stated. By demanding I return the book to her; you acted as judge, jury and executioner, without ever asking to know my side of the story.

Maybe it’s just as well you didn’t ask me about it, as I have no idea whatsoever what this was all about. I don’t know when or where this theft was supposed to have taken place or anything else about it. Neither do I recall Divya Shakti Devi ever mentioning this to me. And one other point; as far as I know I never had the book being referred to and do not have it now. If you, or she, thinks it is here, you are welcome to come and search for it. If you find it she is welcome to have it. But I doubt you believe any of what I have to say about this and I think you would rather believe what she said. So, believe it. I have no objection.

To recap; in 1990 you converted the name Srila Sridhara Maharaja had given me to “Cunning Giri.” In 2010 you judged me a thief and in 2012 you branded me, once again, as a cheater: “Please I thought u were honest.” Really? You thought I was honest? I doubt that very much.

As you know, bad association will ruin one’s spiritual life. It is our most dangerous enemy. You must consider me to be bad association. I agree with you and the IAB on that point and humbly suggest you avoid me in order to save yourself. If you read my letters, or the posts on our website, you are sure to be influenced by my bad association. Therefore, I advise you to adopt with me the position I have taken with those I consider to be bad association. The advice I follow in this regard was given by Srila Sridhara Maharaja with respect to ISKCON’s GBC but I believe it has broader application. I mentioned it in an email I expect to post sometime in the future, but offer it here for your consideration.

To understand my perspective, the following may be helpful to you as I find much affinity to these words of Srila Sridhara Maharaja. He is expressing them with regard to the ISKCON GBC. They apply in my case with respect to those who are working under the direction of the IAB (which you may know as the “Acharya Board”) or any of its members, current or former.

Mādhava Prabhu: The main topic of discussion of the GBC meeting is yourself, and the devotees who are coming to you. So he wants there to be communication between this side and that side so that any problems that come up they may be clarified easily.

Śrīla Śrīdhara Mahārāja: I have no any special desire for this, only that will come to me, my first tendency will be to avoid them. But if I can’t avoid then I shall give some attention. And then if I find that they desire help, then I will try to render help according to my small position. That is my principle all through. I don’t like to go against the GBC, nor I like to submit to their decision. They’re independent. I am also independent. I’m not going to interfere with their activities. But when that report of their activities comes to me by anyone and seeks some advice from me, I give my [advice]. I’m independent man, I give my own instruction as I understand to them. And they’re free to take it or not to take it. That is my position, open position. I’m not sold to any plan of my life, specially, and my plan always in the line of compromise.

I’m not _________ [?] but my tendency is always to minimise and compromise and harmonise. My general nature is such. But still I’m a man of independent understanding, and independent opinion, and independent realisation, and I differ from many of our own section. I can’t submit to their realisations, their thought, their advice. I’m independent of them. I don’t go to interfere with anyone’s activity, but when it comes to me I give my independent decision, and generally I stick to that, whether they take it or does not take, it does not matter much with me. So I’m not their friend, neither their foe. More friend than foe. But still I have my own understanding, own conscience, and I’m open to all that come to me for advice, I give them advice _________________ [?] But I have no time, nor age, nor energy to take any responsible charge of anyone or any action, in this time, of this era. And previously, when I was young I had also no such mentality.

— 82.02.25.E

“my first tendency will be to avoid them” That is my tendency with those I consider to be bad association. I don’t visit their websites, read their posts or in any other way try to glean something from those I consider to be bad association or, at best, irrelevant to my spiritual progress. What is to be gained by association with liars, cheaters, thieves and dishonest persons, the type of person you believe me to be, what to speak of my being an “offender” etc., as the IAB has warned?

The worst cheaters are those that deceive persons attempting to make progress in spiritual life. Worse still are those that deceive devotees of Krishna. Worse than them are those who deceive the followers of Sri Sri Gaura Nitai, the ultimate saviors of the souls of this Kali Yuga. Finally, the worst of all are those that attempt to deceive the followers of Srila Govinda Maharaja and our Guru Varga.

You and the IAB are correct with respect to me being unqualified as a “leader”, devotee, disciple, etc. I agree with you, and them, on these points; in principal. I do not, however, agree with the reasons you, or they, have given, which all look to me to be superficial, inaccurate and/or outright lies. Somehow the real faults, that I recognize in myself, seem to have been overlooked by all of you. Perhaps they have been covered by the grace of Srila Govinda Maharaja. That is my hope and prayer. For then, even such a fallen soul as myself may be instrumental in providing some sort of connection, however slight, to His Divine Grace and our illustrious Guru Varga.

I pray this finds you well in health and spirits.


Swami Bhakti Kanan Giri

*01/02/2012 (From Jagadananda das)

Maharaja do you understand that the tape of Avadhuta & Ranajit was a set up by Avadhuta! who recorded it to trap Ranajit?

so if u post as if they are his real words that is super deceptive!
The fact that he has let it get out proves it! Plus do u know about the tape where Av>M discusses that tape with Gurudeva!!! Please I thought u were honest.

01/07/2018 (From Jagadananda das)
Dandavats!!!!! Hope u r well!!! In your letter u stated that Giri M. took sanyas from Puri M. this is incorrect. He definately took from Govinda M. Govinda M. told me ” I gave him sanyas as I felt I owed it to him to give connection to GuruMaharaj in this way as he did so much personal service to him.” But he was not happy with him at all! Hope Lila is good as well! Take care!