Statement on the protests

By HH Bir Krishna Goswami - 13.6 2020

I am very much in favor of the peaceful protests. There has been gross injustice done to many segments of our society for many, many years. It is everyone’s inalienable right to be treated fairly regardless of whatever type of body they have, and to be engaged according to their nature. It’s good that this is happening to a certain extent; not the violence. Many people are coming to the understanding that they have been mislead, and cheated by the leaders who are not actual leaders. They are misleaders. The current situation can stimulate people to think twice about their goals.

This is an unequaled opportunity much like the 1960s, for giving people Krishna consciousness; so we should take advantage. Whenever there is a conflict in society, and people’s world views are being turned upside-down, it is an opportunity to help people understand the real nature of this world.

In this world people are exploiting other people, not only utilizing racism. There is sexism, and of course in Krishna consciousness we understand it’s also about speciesism, where one species exploits another one. The nature of the conditioned soul is to cheat others. So people who are not Krishna conscious, will take advantage of any opportunity to exploit., This exploitation may be called racism, sexism, or many other isms based upon the illusory bodily consciousness. You see this throughout society. In the name of political correctness, there are endeavors made to exploit others. I won’t get into the details about that particular aspect. The main point is that we, as conditioned souls, want to enjoy and we want others happiness to be secondary or even non-existent if it gives us pleasure. This is a type of sociopathic behavior, which is quite prevalent in society today – where people don’t have empathy or concern for others. In other words we are interested in “taking care of number 1,” ourselves.

Therefore we have to expand our consciousness to include all living entities, who are our brothers and sisters. People are currently endeavoring to take a partial step towards that goal; by expanding equality to all human beings. It is a step in the right direction. I think it is extremely important.Devotees should back this up with the proper philosophical understanding. We do not want any segment of the society to be exploited, and we want everyone to be given equal rights.

Everyone knows I am very strong about that point within the context of ISKCON, where the dominant type of improper discrimination has manifested dis in regards gender roles, responsibilities, duties, and positions. Everyone should have equal rights according to their abilities to function practically in the material and spiritual spheres. We should not be concerned with ones color of skin, gender, or national origin. Discrimination on those bases is nonsense.

When one causes pain to anyone one should understand that that pain will be given to the person who causes in the future. That is the law of Karma. Even if one is not empathetic or caring one needs to understand this.Empathy is more important. We should not want to cause harm. We should see in others eyes that they are suffering and we should feel an overwhelming urge to try and help them. So, this particular movement (Black Lives Matter) is very much in line with Krishna consciousness. A step in the right direction.