Going dark?Hanuman das
I am posting email from an friend and my reply. Friends email is anonymized from “security purposes”:
Email from a friend
Dear Hanuman Prabhu, please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada.
I was thinking that in order to protect yourself and family from future harassment and retribution, I was thinking that it might be a good idea to establish an anonymous web presence for your work, at least a good part of it. And also to somehow leave behind your public identity, if possible.
In this regard, I was just remembering a news report about the Hamas terrorist group‘s policy of keeping its operatives’ identities hidden, by way of masks and other precautions, and that this was linked to the difficulty the Israeli security force had in finding Hamas operatives. By comparison, the competing Fateh faction did not follow a policy of anonymity, and the IDF hunted them down easily, basically killing them off to make Hamas the number 1 terrorist org in Palestine. Pardon the comparison to you, but the lesson is that if people in positions of power don’t like you and they can take action against you, they will.
Also, I was thinking that in order to reduce the possibility of Vaisnava ninda (technically, finding imagined faults), because this is a high-risk undertaking, perhaps some criteria could be developed by which one can understand whether the allegations are substantial and valid. It could be like a check list with items like, “Is the rumor from three or more sufficiently unrelated sources?”, “Is the complaint a major concern?”, etc. And then if enough checkboxes are ticked off, then you can go ahead with the story.
Otherwise, you sometimes have to take back your statements, which in my experience permanently undermines your position. Many of these people are not inclined to forgive or forget a slight against them. They will always use the fact that you admitted to a mistake against you. In any case, it could help reduce the risk of committing Vaisnava ninda.
Anyway, just some thoughts about protecting you.
Your servant, X Dasa
Dear X, please accept my humble obeisances.
All glories to Srila Prabhupada.
I don’t need to protect myself since I don’t have a female secretary and I have not taken sannyas yet.
I am fighting against this very mentality, that I am “doing something wrong”. Sannyasis with female secretaries and sannyasis who enjoy luxury properties are doing it very publicly, actually they are the ones who need to protect themselves from harassment and retribution. Especially retribution from brahmacaries, and their donors.
If I become anonymous, that means I am agreeing to the fact that I am doing something wrong. I am admitting that sannyasis who travel publicly with their female secretaries are bonafide, but those who are exposing them are not bonafide and need to hide themselves. I am not ready to preach such society setup, because Prabhupada never desired to establish such a society. On the long term, such North Korean style society has to fall apart. Even if it remains coherent, it will become society of cheaters and cheated.
I am not terrorist, I am journalist, please don’t compare me to Hamas terrorist group, I find that utterly wrong. People in the position of power need to learn how to behave properly, that is the only way how they will keep their position of power. I don’t think that sannyasis with female secretaries will organise anything against me because there are many better targets than me. Rocana and his “sampradaya sun” website are much more popular than my website. Besides, they tried to kill people in the past (case of Sulocana), and that backfired greatly on them, I don’t think anybody is stupid enough to repeat that mistake.
I also don’t think that they will try anything because costs a lot of money, and poses huge risk of being discovered, and from the other side, I am completely harmless because I don’t have huge crowd publicly supporting my work, so the current establishment is not running any risk of being overthrown. They created pretty good percentage of blind followers, and therefore they are ignoring my website since it doesn’t pose a significant risk.
I very rarely commit mistakes, and I don’t mind to apologize for my mistakes since they are always minor. That makes me even more appealing, because I am willing to apologize for a small mistake. But sannyasis with female secretaries are not able to apologize for their mistake. So, ok, Palika was cooking for Prabhupada on a more than a few occasions, but that doesn’t mean that Indradyumna Swami can travel with young female russian translator. Palika was not traveling with Prabhupada, she traveled to a certain city in advance, to cook for him. And Prabhupada didn’t post 20 photos of Palika on his Facebook profile in course of 1 year period.
As far as Vaisnava ninda is concerned, I am ready to go to hell if sannyasis with female secretaries are bonafide and if sannyasis can live in luxury apartments and everybody has to stay silent. If that was really Prabhupada’s idea for the future of ISKCON, then I am ready to go to hell.
your servant, Hanuman das