Debate with Kancana-valli Devi Dasi on the book changes

This debate was posted on the Sampradaya Sun Dec. 15 2012 :

Exchange with the BBT’s Kancana-valli dd


Dec 15, 2012 — CANADA (SUN) — Following is a recent exchange between Ajit Krishna dasa and the BBT’s Kancana-valli devi dasi regarding changes to Srila Prabhupada’s books. The thread of discussion began with this inquiry from Ajit Krishna dasa on November 25, 2012:

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Caitanya Mahaprabhu on editing the work of a vaisnava

Ishvara Puri also met Gadadhar Pandit and was pleased when he saw the depth of his renunciation. He started to affectionately give him lessons from Sri-Krsna-lilamrta, a book of his own composition. Nimai would also come daily to Gopinath Acharya’s house to visit Ishvara Puri while he was teaching Gadadhar and offer him His obeisances. One day, Ishvara Puripada asked Nimai to correct any mistakes that were in his book. Nimai answered:

Anyone who finds any fault with a devotee’s description of Krishna is a sinner. If a devotee writes a poem, no matter how poorly he does it, it will certainly contain his love for Krishna. A fool says ‘visnaya’ while a scholar knows the correct form is ‘visnave’, but Krishna accepts the sentiment in either case. If anyone sees a fault in this, the fault is his, for Krishna is pleased with anything the pure devotee says. You too describe the Lord with words of love, so what arrogant person would dare criticize anything that you have written? (Chaitanya Bhagavata 1.11.105-110)

We should note carefully that even if mistakes that normally only fools make are in such works, they should not be corrected. If one sees any fault in such so called mistakes, the fault is his.

When Nimai Pandita (Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu) said the above, he was actually referring to these verses from Sri Narada Pancaratra:

“Gaņeśa prayed: A foolish person chants, visnāya namaḥ whereas a learned person chants, vişnave namaḥ. However, the meaning and results of both are the same.”

“A person glorifies the Lord according to the knowledge he has received from the bestower of knowledge, Lord Hari.”

“Actually, Lord Janārdana accepts only the love and devotion that are offered to Him by the devotee.”

“The Supreme Personality of Godhead is beyond the influence of karma. Therefore, who can properly glorify Him? Still, it is everyone’s duty to worship the Lord, offer prayers to Him, bow down to Him and remember Him, according to one’s capacity.”

“According to their particular intelligence and ability, all devotees and non-devotees should glorify and worship the Supreme Lord, and chant His holy names.”

“Kartikeya prayed: You are the Supreme Lord and the indwelling Supersoul of all living beings. It is only from You that the living entities get the necessary intelligence to carry out their activities. People glorify You according to their understanding and saintly persons do not deride their inevitable shortcomings.”