720411 - Letter to Hansadutta written from Sydney
CAMP: ISKCON Sydney, reply Tokyo.
April 11, 1972
My dear Hansadutta,
Please accept my blessings. I beg to acknowledge receipt of your letter dated April 7th, 1972, and I have noted the contents. The meeting of the GBC appeared to be very unconstitutional, because all the men were not informed or invited. Shyamasundar was not invited, Sudam was not invited, Krishna das was not invited, Tamal Krishna was not invited, neither I was informed. Why? You cannot hold meeting of 8 persons without inviting the others. Seven may be a quorum, that's all right, but you cannot convene without a general announcement to all the members and myself, giving a proposed agenda, like that, the topics to be discussed, why the meeting is being called, etc. Then there is correspondence for deciding these things, and if there is great necessity, then meeting may be called, but not whimsically, only after much thought is given and there is clear intimation of all the members plus myself. Anything whatever is done is done, but the whole thing appeared to be giving all power to Atreya Rshi. I cannot understand why, instead of one GBC man, a person outside the Commission was given so much power, and there was to be immediate action without divulging the matter to the devotees. And I am surprised that none of the GBC members detected the defects in the procedure. It was detected only when it came to me. What will happen when I am not here, shall everything be spoiled by GBC? So for the time being, let the GBC activities be suspended until I thoroughly revise the whole procedure. In the meantime, you do your duty as president of Hamburg Temple, and try to improve spiritually. Our spiritual way should strictly observe the following points especially: (1). Neatness and cleanliness of all personal bodies. (I still see those who are initiated as Brahmins, they do not wash their hand after eating even; of course, there may be so many defects due to your births in non-Brahmin families, but how long it shall go on? It is very easy thing.); (2). Chanting 16 rounds daily. (I don't think everyone is following these principles.); (3) Temple worship, which should be performed rigidly between four and ten a.m.)
I find that the devotees are still sleeping up to six, seven o'clock. So in the GBC Agenda I do not find any such programs for reforming our past bad habits. So kindly as President of Hamburg center you try to observe yourself all the regulative principles and see all the members are following.
Recently I have received from one Sannyasi complaint about another Sannyasi who is not chanting regularly. So our view is that we shall be strictly following the rules and regulations. Monetary matters are secondary. On principle, we should better starve than neglect our rules and regulations. We are trying to present an ideal Society to the world, so although we are very rigidly following these principles, still, we are very liberal to everyone. For this reason we are being appreciated everywhere. So anyway, I am not at all dissatisfied with you, but it is my duty to point out the mistakes. You are in charge of the Germany organization. Please do it nicely there, not very much on the material side, more on the spiritual side. Example is better than precept. Every one of you must be the perfect examples, then everyone will follow.
Hoping this will meet you in good health, along with your good wife, Himavati devi dasi.
Your ever well-wisher,
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
Hansadutta das Adhikary
c/o ISKCON Hamburg.