Jul 14, 2017 FRANCE (SUN)
Recently, in ISKCON's official newspaper, we found that:
"The entire TOVP Team is grateful to His Holiness Lokanath Maharaja and all his disciples and followers for their inspiring example and service attitude towards this most important ISKCON project "
Personally, I have absolutely nothing against the TOVP by itself. The issue is that the authorities, as it is said in the above lines, consider generally things like the TOVP as ISKCON most important projects.
The fact is that, however sumptuous the TOVP will be, it will stay only a building and is not supposed to go to Krsna and the spiritual world one day. It will certainly inspire people to a certain point, but that will stay limited. The TOVP, in one form or other, will stay forever on this little planet and those who consider it as the most important project of ISKCON and propagate this idea will also naturally stay with it in this material world.
We are very far from Bhaktisiddhanta Maharaja saying that he was ready to sell the marble of temples for other higher spiritual purposes. And far from Srila Prabhupada's first goal for ISKCON which was that people, more than anything else, should become pure devotees. That would inspire other people much more than the TOVP, with its wrong-right, vague-precise,
certain-uncertain, humble-dogmatic explanations about the universe which will be given in the future by the devotees to those persons!
We are not the first ones in history to build big masterpieces. The advantage of, at the same time, really trying to reach spiritual perfection is that it is also a real bodyguard against doing crazy things. Do you think that if Jayadvaita Swami would really try to get this result, he would have time to do what he is doing with Prabhupada's books? If we consider the fact that "improving" Prabhupada's books is a collective accepted idea in ISKCON, we have already the proof that globally, things like the TOVP project are not efficient the same against that kind of nonsense.
The problem is precisely that many of the very big leaders since very long have given up this goal for themselves and don't even try anymore to reach this perfection. They mainly live on their past spiritual gains. To be big shots, to receive honour, adoration, service, respect, consideration and admiration from others and to do things is enough for their happiness. They are spiritually small-timers. All that is not the real goal of life.
So, external projects became the most important for ISKCON and those huge projects, once accomplished, contribute of course to increase those authorities' own mixed spiritual-material status in society. Those external projects and accomplishments take the place of actual spiritual progress and advancement till the ultimate and necessary goal of life. In fact, Srila Prabhupada's first purpose for those people (and each of us) was that they became real pure devotees. Unfortunately, those big guns look not at all interested in that, or even have any idea about what it really means. They prove it everyday. Or think that they have already reached this level. Which means the same.
So, with such very big irremovable authorities who are supposed to give the right true example to others but don't do it, if a "little" devotee is actually interested in really trying to reach the proper goal of life, it becomes generally necessary for him (her) to go outside of ISKCON in order to escape to this superficial external pressure. That is the drama.