LettersI Pray Your Guru Mahārāja Inspires You to Do the Right Thing (12/10/02)
LettersLet All the Knowledge of So-Called Scholars Go to Hell (12/12/02)

Saving the World, Voting and Vegetarianism (12/10/02)

Dear P____ Dāsa,

Hare Kṛṣṇa.

 Is it our duty then to vote to outlaw these and other sins?

It is not necessarily our duty to ‘vote’, but if a householder can do something to stop sinful activity in the world, then he should do that. Our main duty is to follow properly in Kṛṣṇa consciousness and to preach to others.

I am very curious as to how Mahārāja Parikṣit balanced his allowance of Kali’s existence with the enforcement of the laws of his kingdom.

There are such descriptions in the First Canto of Bhāgavatam that you should read. Parikṣit did not allow the four sinful activities and their co-partners to flourish. But as Kali begged for some place to stay, he allowed Kali to reside wherever gold was hoarded. Hoarding of wealth is one of the root causes of sinful activity. Therefore, all excess money should be used to promote saṅkīrtana and serve the Supreme Lord. This especially applies to householders who are recommended to give 50% of their accumulated wealth to Guru and Kṛṣṇa (accumulated wealth means one’s savings).

Although democracy is as you said “demon-crazy” and politics this country offers the opportunity to voice one’s opinion by voting. My wish is to be able to vote responsibly with decisions based on  Vaiṣṇavism and pleasing to the devotees.

Good idea. Śrīla Śrīdhara Mahārāja also used to send his Indian devotees to vote in the elections in Navadvīpa.

You will find however that the people in America who are, for example, against abortion (the conservatives) are also against Hare Kṛṣṇas. And ironically, you will find that the liberals, who favour abortion and similar issues, are favourable to eastern religions. As it turns out, the ‘Born Again Christians’ are strongly against abortion, but they also ‘hate’ Hare Kṛṣṇas. America is a strange place.

Here is another example – in America, there are many vegetarians. Some are favourable to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, but the most influential vegetarian magazine, ‘Vegatarian Times’ and also ‘Yoga Journal are both apposed to Kṛṣṇa consciousness. We have direct experience in dealing with their senior editors.

In India, there are many yogīs and vegetarians who also appose Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Even if one is sinless, or a so-called spiritualist, he/she may still oppose Kṛṣṇa consciousness. This is common. ‘Sin’ and ‘no sin’ are both on the material platform. However, Kṛṣṇa consciousness is transcendental and is above both ‘sin’ and ‘no sin’.

So at the end of the day, the best way to save the world is to preach Kṛṣṇa consciousness. But if you want to vote and try to do some good in that way, there is no harm.

I hope this meets you well.

Affectionately,

Swami B.G. Narasingha

LettersI Pray Your Guru Mahārāja Inspires You to Do the Right Thing (12/10/02)
LettersLet All the Knowledge of So-Called Scholars Go to Hell (12/12/02)