Do you feel that only if you follow Iskcon principles you will be elevated? Are all others lacking somewhere?
Transcription: Sudha Mehta Mataji
Question: Do you feel that only if you follow only Iskcon principles you will be elevated? Are all other organizations lacking somewhere?
Answer: Firstly it is not Iskcon principles that we are talking about we are talking about scriptural principles. So the scriptures are given by god and to the extent we follow the path given god to that extent we will get elevated because God has given the path for our elevation just like a doctor gives particular set of treatment for the healing of the patient. And any organization that follows the scriptural teachings is capable of elevating people and taking them back to God. So actually there are four sampradayas and anyone who is following the teachings of sampradayas properly can develop love for the Supreme Lord and return back to the eternal abode of the supreme Lord. It is not that we are talking about ISKCON Principles we are talking about scriptural principles which are the principles given by god. And is there any way apart from God’s way? If it is not God’s way then its man’s own way and man has made many many ways many many philosophies many “isms“ communism, socialism, Marxism, Capitalism like that these are ofcourse material system of organization and people have come up with many philosophies which are thought to be spiritual systems of some kind insight or elevation. But these all are finite and fallible they can help us to some extent in a finite way but they are fallible they can also mislead us because we human beings are error prone. It’s not that we are saying that other organizations are deficient because they do not agree with Iskcon actually even Iskcon will become deficient if Iskcon doesn’t follow scriptures. It is not that anybody any particular organization has a permanent monopoly on God. First of all nobody has monopoly on God. God is unlimited and those who follow his words they get his grace and secondly following God’s words is not a onetime event it is a lifelong event. So as long as a spiritual path or spiritual organization is following the words of God to that extent one can get elevated and beyond the specific points of the scriptural principles for purification and liberation so that one can go back to god, there are also principles of apara dharma that means there may be principles of material religiosities which for example may teach truthfulness, may be self mastery may be caring for others and these are important human principles they may be material but they are important human principles that elevate people towards goodness. And to the extent people follow those principles to that extent also they will be elevated to goodness. Infact in the 17th Chapter of Bhagwad Gita Arjuna precisely asks the question to Krishna which is similar to the question asked over here“ What happens to those who don’t follow scriptures but have some kind of faith“ then Krishna basically answers that then it depends on the kind of modes that they are cultivating. If they are living in goodness they will be elevated. If they are in passion then they will stay where they are and if they are in ignorance they will go down and get degraded. So if you want to know what will be theresult for someone who follows some other organization then one should look at the kind of modes that the followers of that organization are living in and one can also look at the kind of standards that are expected among their best followers also and to the extent those are emulated by the people. So how do we know the modes that a person is affected by? There are various criteria’s which the seventeenth chapter points towards the way we speak, what we eat, the kind of sacrifices that we do, the kind of charities that we give the kind of yajna dyan tapa and anna there are four primary characteristics and 18 th chapter also describes some further characteristics so by looking overall at the life style of a person if a person is engaged in purely materialistic activities by bearing the label of belonging to a particular organization then the label doesn’t matter actually the consciousness the life style matters. The consciousness is expressed through the life style. So if we follow principles that take us towards goodness then we will be elevated towards goodness. There are very few organizations that follow god’s words in their fullness or at least to the extent that are necessary for us to become liberated and to develop love for god so if the organizations is teaching love of god and teaching you scriptural teachings for developing love of god then one will attain the highest elevation and if the organization is teaching relatively moral principle that are superior to the level morally elevated at least higher than what rest of society is doing. So it is not that any particular organization has monopoly on elevating others.It actually it is god who has the capacity for elevating people to supreme destination and any organizations follows god can elevate people similarly and apart from the direct scriptural principles if an organizations teaches moral principles then that will also help to get elevated the people to some extent depending on the kind of practices that are being taught. Thank you