Chakra Discussions

GBC Behaviors Unclear

by Name withheld by request

Posted April 28, 2007

It has been 12 years since the GBC have been asked to resolve this Dhanurdhara issue, but they still have not. Ironically, they could have taken care of this in 1996 and avoided the lawsuit.

Most disturbing was the letter of apology to Dhanurdhara -- the abuser. Why did the GBC codify the apology to Dhanurdhara and his abuse victims simultaneously in a public resolution? Has this ever been done in the history of mankind? Does this qualify as normal behavior? Does the Catholic Church or any other religion behave this way? Didn't any of the GBC leaders realize how bad and how out-of-touch it would make them look?

Is it true that Dhanurdhara is initiating in Israel "under the radar" and that he leads large parikrams in Vrndavana? And why does Jayadvaita Swami have this in his biography that he sends to the temples:

"In 1985 and 1986, he spent a year and a half traveling with a party of pilgrims on pada-yatra, a journey on foot, through various states of India, stopping in a different town or village every night. In 1987, along with Dhanurdhara Swami and Bhurijana Dasa, he co-founded the Vrindaban Institute for Higher Education. Since 1988 he has served as a director of Srila Prabhupada's publishing house, the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust.

"From 1991 through most of 1998 he served as editor-in-chief of Back to Godhead magazine, for which he had been an assistant editor for several years. Recently he served as editor for a three-volume translation and commentary for Sri Brhad-bhagavatamrta, a sixteenth-century Sanskrit philosophical and devotional work."

The only people mentioned in this bio, besides Srila Prabhupada, are both child abusers. I am assuming that this is an oversight. Another Maharaja, during his lecture, talked about the nice preaching Dhanurdhara was doing. My congregation is confused about Dhanurdhara.On the one hand the GBC likes and respects him. On the other hand, the gurukulis would like him out of his position (officially and unofficially).

The GBC seems to have written the gurukulis off, hoping perhaps that the "new blood" will not have the same issues with Dhanurdhara. In fact many new bhaktas have no idea what Dhanurdhara has done and think that the gurukulis are troublemakers who are in maya.

To recap, this is what Dhanurdhara has done in the past, according to the Turley lawsuit testimony:

  1. He broke a child's nose and repeatedly administered beating for years; unfortunately, the victim ended up committing suicide.
  2. He broke a child's ribs.
  3. He repeatedly beat children -- sometimes until they passed out.
  4. He threw children into marble walls and, when they hit the ground, repeatedly kicked them.
  5. He lifted children up by the ears -- sometimes causing physical trauma.
  6. He boxed children's ears with closed fists, making his students' ears bleed.
  7. He repeatedly hired sexual child molesters.
  8. He ignored pleas from the older children to get rid of the child molesters.
  9. He allowed the ex-guru Bhavananda to inappropriately go into the shower with children and "clean" them.
  10. He would ignore the screams of children being raped by their teachers.
  11. He refused to terminate a teacher who knocked a child's front teeth out.
  12. He exhibited sadistic, antisocial behavior with the students.

In most of the world, they might describe this type of behavior as torture, but in ISKCON it is described as karma. While I am sure Bhanu prabhu is a nice devotee, I would request that the chairman revise and extend his remarks to clarify the situation.

What is Dhanurdhara's official and unofficial role in ISKCON? Is he still a guru? Does he still have disciples? Will he have a Samadhi? What is his punishment for not adhering to the restrictions? Who is the GBC contact person, if devotees observe Dhanurdhara trolling for disciples?

Who will protect the new devotees unaware of this violent past from Dhanurdhara's advances? If he is initiating, has disciples and is welcome in ISKCON (per the GBC resolution), it means that he is an initiating guru in good standing in ISKCON.

Finally, why is he encouraging this man to contact his abuse victims? Did he ask them if that is what they wanted? The last time Dhanurdhara and his abuse victim met in Mayapura, it ended up badly for both parties.

I look forward to a response.