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From here

There is a misconception that the Krsna consciousness movement represents Hinduism. Krsna consciousness is in no way a faith or religion that seeks to defeat other faiths or religions. Rather, it is an essential cultural movement for the entire human society and does not consider any particular sectarian faith. This cultural movement is especially meant to educate people in how they can love God.

They have scripture with the same name as Hindu scriptures, but they are under no obligation to remain true to the original Hindu sources. They can change the wording, certainly take liberties in translation - so citing ISKCON sources as Hindu sources damages the integrity of this site.

This is not suggesting banning their works - only stopping ISKCON material being cited as Hindu scripture. Now there is an enormous amount of commentary and interpretation of Hindu scripture by secular Western scholars - but their source is authentic Hindu scripture. In fact, Western scholars have rendered Hindu scripture MORE authentic through their research (For example the BORI critical edition of Mahabharata would not have been possible without Western research).

There is no excuse to cite the hare krishna version of Bhagavad Gita when an authentic Hindu version is available online with free access.

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    Not a good idea to alienate ISKCON work. It's well established for years, whether right or wrong. If it's banned for whatever reason, then slowly users will start proposing their non-favourite works for banning. – iammilind Apr 7 '18 at 3:23
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    Yes I agree with @iammilind. In that way everyone will propose to ban the translation of other sects or western scholars. – Triyugi Narayan Mani Apr 7 '18 at 4:56
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    Most people understand that their translations can be wrong at many places (most probably which is intentionally done) but a complete ban on their translations is not a solution. Because who will vouch for the correctness of any other translations for example? – Rickross Apr 7 '18 at 5:55
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    If they are self declared non Hindu then they should be rejected. – user1195 Apr 7 '18 at 11:34
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    What about Ramakrishna Mission? They too don't consider themselves as "Hindus". – Surya Kanta Bose Chowdhury Apr 7 '18 at 16:40
  • @SuryaKantaBoseChowdhury Swami Vivekananda spent his whole life preaching Hinduism and you say they don't consider themselves as Hindus? Any sources to back up your claim? – Pinakin Apr 8 '18 at 6:27
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    @ChinmaySarupria I'm not accusing Swami Vivekananda. I'm talking of the present RKM. Anyway, its a well known fact Ramakrishna Mission approached the courts to shed their "Hindu" status and looked for "minority status". – Surya Kanta Bose Chowdhury Apr 8 '18 at 7:25
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    @ChinmaySarupria I guess this is a reliable source: indiatoday.in/magazine/religion/story/… – Surya Kanta Bose Chowdhury Apr 8 '18 at 7:30
  • @SuryaKantaBoseChowdhury You should read official Belur Math's Ideology page and point 5(a). – Pinakin Apr 8 '18 at 10:25
  • @ChinmaySarupria I am aware of those points. – Surya Kanta Bose Chowdhury Apr 8 '18 at 12:14
  • Can u quote it from Chaitanya or Prabhupada teachings instead of blogs? – Krishna Shweta Apr 10 '18 at 9:50
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Short version :

NO

Nope

We are a neutral site. All the translations and interpretations are welcome here. The site does not follow the policy of allowing a translation of one publisher and not allowing another publisher based on their faith or beliefs.


Long version:

ISKCON is a Hindu organization

ISKCON is a Hindu organization. It has problem with the 'name Hindu' which many of them also have. Many Hindus today like them to call themselves as the followers of Sanatana Dharma, the eternal religion. ISKCON is no different.

From the same article you have posted,

This cultural movement is especially meant to educate people in how they can love God.

Here, they mean Krishna as God (direct words of Prabhupada, the founder of ISKCON). Krishna is a Hindu God and not god of other religion. So, they are still Hindus.

To continue the statement of the blogger from the article,

Sometimes Indians both inside and outside of India think that we are preaching the Hindu religion, but actually we are not. One will not find the word Hindu in the Bhagavad-gita. Indeed, there is no such word as Hindu in the entire Vedic literature. This word has been introduced by the Muslims from provinces next to India, such as Afghanistan, Baluchistan, and Persia. There is a river called Sindhu bordering the north western provinces of India, and since the Muslims there could not pronounce Sindhu properly, they instead called the river Hindu, and the inhabitants of this tract of land they called Hindus. In India, according to the Vedic language, the Europeans are called mlecchas or yavanas. Similarly, Hindu is a name given by the Muslims.

So, it is clear that ISKCON has the problem with the name Hindus but not with the beliefs and tradition of the religion. If you read the complete article instead of hand picking single line, there are multiple references where the author of the blog has supported that their movement is not a separate religion or a sectarian religion. He accepts Bhagavad Gita and also says that they accept Vedic literature. So, there is no point in saying they are not Hindus. Similarly, Alwar and Nayanar saints didn't know the word Hindu. But that doesn't make the faith formed based on their works and teachings a different religion from Hinduism. They are also Hindus in present days.

They have scripture with the same name as Hindu scriptures, but they are under no obligation to remain true to the original Hindu sources.

They are also Hindus. So, this point is invalid. Also, the definition of Hinduism or Hindu religion is not correctly defined. There are many definitions to it. There is no compulsion from the holy books that every Hindu must worship every Hindu God. There are only suggestions and advices. A follower of the religion is free to worship only single god, two gods or all the Gods. That is a reason we have different interpretations and faiths. Monotheism is also said in the scriptures (ekam evadvitiyam brahma). That was the reason we had different sects, faiths like Vaishnavism the people who consider Vishnu to be the supreme God, Shaivism who consider Shiva to be the only supreme God and other Gods as inferior etc., So, ISKCON are no different. They worship Krishna to be supreme and no one else as Supreme. Let me quote an answer written by you.

Because they are an off-shoot of Gaudiya Vaishnavism and Gaudiyas believe Krishna is the supreme God. The basis may be the Brahma Vaivarta purana

Brahma Vaivarta Purana is one of the Maha puranas which are not only exclusive to that sect but to all the Hindus. So, your current proposal that they are not Hindus contradicts your own answer written on main site.

They can change the wording, certainly take liberties in translation

Yes, that is what every translator or commentator does. They translate according to the belief or thought they have or the faith they follow. They also add different references supporting their interpretation. That is not a problem exclusive to ISKCON only. Same statement is interpreted by one person in one way and another person in other way. Here, we should see the diversity of the interpretation. If a sentence is given to a person belonging to one faith, he gives the meaning differently, another person in a different way. What should be accepted should be reader's own choice. You might be knowing Blind man and the elephant analogy. in fact, there are discussions on allowing many interpretations and answering the same question from different interpretation and philosophies because it helps the stats of the site. There will be no interference of the site in this matter.

so citing ISKCON sources as Hindu sources damages the integrity of this site.

No. It doesn't effect at all. There are already different questions under . Works from ISKCON are also allowed because they are also teaching a form of Hinduism.

Now there is an enormous amount of commentary and interpretation of Hindu scripture by secular Western scholars - but their source is authentic Hindu scripture.

Now, this is an opinion based point and has a prejudice. For a follower of Gaudiya Vaishnavism and ISKCON, their teachings are true and authentic for others it may be or may be not. ISKCON followers may find problems with the works you consider as true and authentic. So, it is a personal opinion whether an interpretation or a translation is right. It is wrong to say it deviates the original (another subjective term) teaching of Hinduism. ISKCON also bases their teachings on authentic Hindu scriptures but their way of interpretation is different from others. Every sect has a different set of beliefs formed due to the way of understanding God. No two sects have similar beliefs. A sect which interprets different from others will not be a reason All the sects and beliefs of Hinduism are welcome here.

Western scholars have rendered Hindu scripture MORE authentic through their research (For example the BORI critical edition of Mahabharata would not have been possible without Western research).

Yes, even I am not saying anything different. Their works are considered as sources and references on the site. But you are making your personal point here again which can be dismissed by others. There is a bad opinion on the western scholarship among some Hindus and different from original teachings of the Hinduism. This is just as the same you are arguing ISKCON is doing. There is no wrong in citing western scholarship or ISKCON literature until it is related to the question or answer. If it helps the quality of the post, it is always welcome.

There is no excuse to cite the hare krishna version of Bhagavad Gita when an authentic Hindu version is available online with free access.

This is a fallacy. Saying not to cite a work from some author you don't like because there are works from your favorite author is bias. There is no place bias on the site. I repeat the same sentence I did many times in the answer... "All sects and interpretations are welcome on the site".

Wrong translations are to be corrected not stopped completely.

Other answer gives some points saying that there are many mistakes in the translations of their version of Bhagavad Gita. Every translation has mistakes. Every translator or commentator makes some mistakes and gives his own notes based on the beliefs he has. ISKCON uses some special words such as "Supreme personality of Godhead" etc., for referring Lord Krishna and other Gods. Here, some of them have problem with this and ask for stopping of their works. Their translation is based on their beliefs. They only like to call only Krishna to call supreme and no one else. As a Vaishnavite, they only see Vishnu or Krishna as supreme according to the scriptures and the acharyas' interpretation they are taught. They also teach the same. A Shaivite (traditional Shaiva like Basava) interprets and sees Shiva as supreme and not others gods as supreme. We don't expect them to change their beliefs because some persons doesn't like them. If you are doing so, it is forcing your beliefs on others which the site is totally against. We respect all the beliefs.

If you say

Meh, I am still not convinced that Harekrishnas are Hindus.

If you are still not convinced that they are Hindus, then let me tell you that this is not a Hindu site. It is just a website by a secular company based in the US whose founder is not a Hindu.

Hinduism Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for followers of the Hindu religion and those interested in learning more about Hinduism.

So, users need not to be Hindus. There are users from different countries and reliions on the site. So, allowing works of Non Hindu authors i not a wrong thing to do. They just need to have knowledge about Hinduism and their work should enhance the quality of the post. Even Max Müller , Ralph.T.H. Griffith were not Hindus. Still they wrote works on Hindu texts. If their works are allowed, I don't see any objection in allowing works from this organization who has direct connection with the religion and also follow many principles and holy books of Hinduism.

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  • Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat. – Pandya Apr 11 '18 at 9:28
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    Similarly, Alwar and Nayanar saints didn't know the word Hindu. But that doesn't make the faith formed based on their works and teachings a different religion from Hinduism. They are also Hindus in present days. -- very true! – brahma jijnasa Jun 9 '19 at 22:02
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from http://prabhupadasaid.com/?tag=hindu

sayings of the founder of ISKCON:

'Prabhupada said, “Although posing as great scholars, ascetics, householders and svamis, the so-called followers of the Hindu religion are all useless, dried-up branches of the Vedic religion. They are impotent; they cannot do anything to spread the Vedic culture for the benefit of human society.'


'Prabhupada said, “But India, they have given up the real religious system, sanatana-dharma, or varnasrama-dharma. Fictitiously, they have accepted a hodgepodge thing which is called Hinduism.'


'So Hindu, Hindu religion is a modern term given by the foreigners. Actually the Indians, bharatiya, they, their religion is varnasrama-dharma, religion of four castes and four spiritual orders, four spiritual orders and four social orders. The persons who follow these four orders of social status and four orders of spiritual advancement, they are called varnasrama. So Hindu religion is a miscalculation.'


'Prabhupada said, “I don’t want a Hindu temple. Our constitution is different. We want everyone. Krishna consciousness is for everyone. It is not a Hindu propaganda. People may not misunderstand. And actually, till now in our society there is not a single other Hindu than me."'


'Prabhupada said, “God is neither Hindu nor Muslim nor Christian. He’s God. And we are also not Hindu or Muslim or Christian. This is our bodily designation."'


http://www.hknet.org.nz/Drug-Alcohol-page.htm

"Prabhupada: Ramakrishna Mission is not Vedic. It is a creation of Vivekananda's concoction. It is not Vedic. Just like they created a God, Ramakrishna. So that is not a Vedic sanction, that you create any fool rascal, a god."

https://iskcondesiretree.com/forum/topics/is-ramakrishna-the-incarnation

'Prabhupäda: Suska, Suska means dry. Oh, it is material, I shall not touch. I shall not touch. Just like that rascal, Ramakrishna, if anyone wanted to give him some money (gesture). (laughter) How, he does not touch money. These rascals, why shall I not touch? Come on, you have got money, George Harrison, spend. Yes, come on, I shall take it, for Krsna. We haven't come to this house for living very comfortably and enjoying. No, we have come here for Krsna's service.

(July 9, 1973, London)'

Clearly, this man was antithetic to Hinduism and his writings cannot be Hindu scripture, even if sourced from Hindu scripture.

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    On the contrary, by quoting Prabhupada, your answer actually proves that ISKCON is a very much Hindu organization which intends to spread out Santana Dharma which is known as Hinduism. Perhaps in their own way [right or wrong]. I would upvote for that reason. – iammilind Apr 11 '18 at 2:39
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    While I'm not inclined toward ISKCON, these quotes are basically correct. Sanatana Dharma wasn't a single system historically. Islamic rule caused non-muslims to band together. Then the British grouped various "exotic" traditions together because as foreigners they couldn't easily differentiate them. Later, Neo-Vedanta further solidified the various schools & traditions into what we call Hinduism. – Rubellite Yakṣī Apr 11 '18 at 4:20

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