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Thread: Conflicts between teachings of Srila Prabhupada and scientific evidence

  1. #1
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    Conflicts between teachings of Srila Prabhupada and scientific evidence


    I used to be a gaudiya vaishnava/Hare Krishna from 2007 until few months ago.

    The reason I left gaudiya vaishnavism/Krishna Consciousness is that Srila Prabhupada,the founder of ISKCON, taught things that science has proven to be objectively false.

    For example he taught that there is one and only sun in the whole universe and that all stars are like the moon...they reflect the light of the one and only sun.
    Instead science has shown without any doubt that stars are like the sun,they shine with their own light.

    Another example is that he taught that the moon is inhabited by demigods.
    Instead science has discovered that the moon is a totally lifeless planet.

    I would very much like to be a gauidya vaishnava/Hare Kṛiṣhṇa again and forever but first I have a question.

    Can I choose to be faithful and loyal to Srila Prabhupada only in spiritual matters and at the same time choose not to believe him when he talks about scientific matters?

    Last edited by orlando; 28 July 2022 at 01:31 AM.

  2. #2
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    Re: Conflicts between teachings of Srila Prabhupada and scientific evidence

    Namaste Orlando ji,

    What you say is not really new. I have heard other narrations from former devotees and some prominent members who distanced themselves from Srila Prabhupada owing to some of his remarks.

    No, I'm not really talking about his remarks on Blacks, women, etc.

    For example, when America broadcasted to the world how men landed on the Moon, Srila Prabhupada is said to have turned off the TV suddenly in the middle of the program and say, "No, this is fake, man never really landed on the moon!". This seems to have offended certain prominent devotees at that time who promptly then left the movement and Srila Prabhupada.

    I see Prabhupada as a pure devotee. I don't subscribe to the view that all his (non-religious) words and sentiments must be correct always. He is entitled to his views, but the point here is he has lived a decent life without harming anyone, which to me means a lot.

    These days there are lots of gurus claiming themselves to be near-gods who let out politically correct statements but in actuality, cause much harm to the society and mankind in general.

    I see what Prabhupada has emphasized to a devotee of ISKCON truly make sense. Many go the extent of claiming he disregarded what is known as 'naimittika karma' or in other words, the performance of the sacred Gayathri mantra-japa each day. There are also other such accusations. But these are not true. Prabhupada emphasized performance of gayathri as well as japa of the mahamantra. His advice essentially is to free mankind of the impurities of kali (over-indulgence in sex, materialism and pleasures) in this lifetime itself so as to ascend to godhead.

    He practiced what he preached when coming to religion. He did daily sadhana of 16 rounds of mahamantra (actually he did much more than that) and lived a simple, austere life. (He is said to have darshan of Sri Rupa Goswami - one of the six goswamis owing to his profound sadhana who told him he will achieve much overseas).

    I disregard a few comments of Srila Prabhupada owing to the above stated reasons (blacks, women, man-on-the-moon, and what you said in the OP).

    Even Sri Vaishnava guru Srimad Ramanujacharya assigns a much lower status to worship of Lord Shiva. In practice, I find that respecting Lord Shiva like how I respect Krishna or Vishnu goes a long way in giving me peace and joy. I respect Srimad Ramanujacharya for his life and accomplishments which are exemplary. But I feel I have the right to disobey his sentiment regarding Lord Shiva worship because those sentiments, I feel, could be rather speculative attempts on his part, subject to cognitive bias. Even if it is argued that his statements regarding Shiva worship were authenticated by Vaishnava works of the yore, I still personally feel most joyous when not subscribing to this view, but that is just me, and the point I am making is that, I feel I have the liberty to do so!

    I just wish anyone could see the efficacy of the movement given by Prabhupada and to see how he lived as an example following what he prescribed, and simply ignore a few contradictory sentiments of his!

    Wish you good luck.

    Warm regards,

    Last edited by Viraja; 28 July 2022 at 01:29 PM.
    jai hanuman gyan gun sagar jai kapis tihu lok ujagar

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