Vedic Training: How To Become A Krishna Conscious Wife For ISKCON Brahmacarinis
"Conclusion:" chapter of the Brahmacarini Training
Manual. >Contents Page
The conclusion is simple, the
application may not be. The entire message of this whole book, all based on the many
quotes by Srila Prabhupad, is to stress why and how a wife must submissively serve her
husband and allow him to assume the superior position in marriage. The conclusion is to
apply these teachings of Srila Prabhupad. It is essential in order to make a peaceful
family and a peaceful society.
Srila Prabhupad said that this is achieved
through training. Culture requires training. If no one else is teaching you these things,
then you must teach yourself. Self-discipline. Study what Srila Prabhupad taught on the
matter, study it again. Understand it. Then work to apply it.
Morning Walk Conversation July 10, 1975
Now our policy should
be that at Dallas we shall create first-class men, and we shall teach
the girls two things.
One thing is how to become chaste and faithful to their husband and how
to cook nicely. If these two
qualifications they have, I will take guarantee to get for them good husband.
personally... Yes. These two qualifications required. She must learn how to prepare
first-class foodstuff, and she must learn how to become chaste and faithful to the
husband. Only these two qualification required. Then her life is successful. So try to do
that. Ordinary education is sufficient, ABCD. This is all nonsense, so big, big, sound
education and later on become a prostitute. What is this education? To make them
prostitute, it doesnt require education.
Here Srila Prabhupad explains what he wants us
to do in regards to our daughters (the brahmacarinis can take lesson as well). The girls
are to learn 2 things. How to cook first-class and how to submissively serve their
husbands. He says if the girls can learn these 2 things then he will make a personal
guarantee to get a good husband for the girls. Srila Prabhupad will give his personal
guarantee. What more can a girl who desires a good Krishna Conscious husband ask for than
If we train our daughters up in just these two
things, Krishnas pure devotee will then personally guarantee to find her a good
husband. We want to find a first-class husband for our daughter, or the brahmacarini wants
to find for herself, here is how to get Srila Prabhupads personal guarantee
to get a good husband.
It is simple. It starts with the girl becoming
qualified to be a first-class wife, then Krishna and Srila Prabhupad he will send someone
equally qualified. If you are not so qualified, why should Prabhupad or Krishna send you a
more qualified husband?
The girls must understand that the prescribed
duty for the wife is to become submissive and faithful to her husband. These
are the instruction of Krishna and Srila Prabhupad repeated and said in
so many ways time after
time. It is the wifes social duty and it is her duty and service to
Krishna. As with all other duties, we must not be attached to the results.
If the marriage is materially
successful, that is nice. Regardless, if the woman and man perform their
duties as their service to Krishna, then spiritually they will succeed. We
must not be attached to the
Do you want a peaceful and happy married life?
Do you want submissive and wonderfully happy Krishna Conscious children? Mother is said to
be the first guru in life. She is the first teacher. To become a perfect teacher one first
must become a perfect follower. The best way to teach is by example. When the wife is
submissive to her husband and approaches him with folded hands in a submissive mood, she
teaches the children by her example how to properly respect their authorities (their
My wife is from Hindu family, and some of this
is easier for her to understand. However, she was born in South Africa and received a
Western style education. She understands these things are right, but she still has
problems in applying it. I cannot say she is an ideal wife, but, she has made progress in
the last several years.
This book, as I said at the beginning it would,
has presented strictly the Vedic standards of ideal character and behavior
for the wife. Accepting and worshipping the husband as instructor guru,
being always submissive and
taking the subordinate position. Always speaking with sweet kind words. These
are tall orders for the modern Western raised liberated woman. As many women have
remarked, to them this is like a return to the dark ages. Interesting to note, however, is
that if we go back 80 to 100 years, even 50 years, we find the divorce rates in America
were very small. While at the same time women were still somewhat subordinate to the
husband, and the majority of women were mothers and housewives. The more
liberated the women have become, the more independent and un-submissive they
have become, the higher and higher has the divorce rate climbed. At the same time
happiness in family has declined, more and more children are suffering the results of
broken family and homes. What good to society is womens liberation? The
goal, it is thought, is to make life better for women. The goal is to make like happier
and more peaceful. People will wake up. You judge something by the results it produces.
Take a look at the facts, look at the results. Womens so-called liberation and equal
treatment - equal rights it has produced just the opposite effect. If you want a peaceful
and successful married life, please, take Srila Prabhupads instructions
Training for the daughter: Parents are to
teach the daughter at home. Of course, the first thing is the parents
need to understand and agree to these principles. Then, the best training
is by example. The
mother of the daughter should herself practice this (as far as respecting
the husband properly). This can start with offering obeisances, touching
his feet, approaching him
with folded hands. Never arguing. Always speaking sweetly to him, no matter
what. Serving him in a surrendered and submissive mood. This is the best
training any mother can give
her daughter. This sort of training will very, very much please Srila Prabhupad.
If the mother cannot bring herself to that
position due to her own weakness, then the next best thing is for her to
at least philosophically accept or even theoretically accept that Srila
his instructions on this matter are correct. From this platform she has to
be straight forward and fully honest with her daughter and explain to her
what is the ideal standard
and why her daughter needs to understand this, and explain why she, the mother,
has problems doing it. She can explain that she was not trained like this
herself in youth,
therefore it is hard for her to apply it.
Actually, on a several points my wife fits this
description. However, I am the one who does the explaining to our daughters
and she supports what I teach them. My oldest daughter is now 4 ½ (as of March of 1997) and she
understands that when her mother is not acting properly.
In fact, just the other week we had another
fight. My older daughter came up and said, "Pitaji, come, I want to tell you
something in the other room". I went and she told me, "Pitaji, I am never going
to yell at my husband. Mataji doesnt know. It is very bad. I am never going to yell
at my husband for any reason." I gave her a big hug and told her that
Krishna was very pleased with her, she is learning very nicely. And I went
back and told my wife that
she had to be very proud of her daughter. Our training is working. That actually
ended the fight. Our fights occur much less often, they are shorter and the
much quicker. The reason, my wife is slowly trying to apply these things.
She (sort of) knows when she is wrong, but it is still a bit hard for her
to apply it all the time. And,
I am not taking advantage. She has been over worked with raising 3 small
children with no extended family to help. She gets over worked at times,
exhausted. In those states she
sometimes looses it, and we fight.
At what age should the training for the daughter
begin? Srila Prabhupad said cultural training begins at birth. My oldest
daughter is now 4 ½ as of March of 97. Before she could talk I have been telling her how someday I will
give her to a husband and how she must always speak very nicely to him, serve him, worship
his feet, make him happy, clean his house and learn to cook very nicely for him. I have
told her that this will please Srila Prabhupad very much. I made it a point to have this
talk with her every once in a while. Every month or two, sometimes more often. Now that
she is 4 ½ she understands very nicely. None of this is new to her. It is
all quite natural, she has heard it all her life. And I will continue training
her in this way. I am
setting the foundation for her to have a happy married life. I am qualifying
her so that Srila Prabhupad and Krishna will be obligated to help me find
her an equally qualified
young man who will give her the protection and spiritual guidance she deserves.
Culture requires training. These things do not
come totally on their own. Everything must be painstakingly taught to children. How to
pass in the toilet, how to talk, how to walk, how to read and write. Everything has to be
taught by repeating the same thing over and over, by reading, by example. The same with
culture. Read what Srila Prabhupad has taught. Discuss it with them. Read it again, and
again, talk to them about it, explain why. Then show by example. That is the duty of
mother and father, to properly guide and train their children.
Training for the Brahmacarini: The older we are
the harder it becomes to learn new things, what to speak of an entirely different
culture with all different ideas and ways of looking at things. It isnt easy, but it can be
done. The Mormons do it. New people join their religion all the time, and they are trained
in (many) of these ways. (Mormons teach that women are meant to be subordinate to the
men). The first thing for the older girls is the same as for the child, it has to be
properly understood and accepted first. We have to understand how this will make our
future life happy and our marriage successful. It means to caste off all the garbage and
rubbish we have learned throughout our previous life as a non-devotee. All the trash about
how a woman must be fight for her equal rights. Caste it all off. (As Srila Prabhupad has
said, a disciple should present himself to his guru like a freshly erased chalk board so
that the guru can now write on it the actual truth. Study what Srila Prabhupad has taught,
it is a very precise science. Study the failures of womens liberation.
The failure rate of marriages today. Understand how this can ruin or seriously
hinder and damage the
lives of the children of broken homes. Understand the connection and truth
in what Srila Prabhupad says, that divorce is due to womanly weakness that
manifests by the wife not
accepting her husband as her authority, by not taking the submissive position
in all dealings with him. Understand the need to follow the varnashram system
of marriage, then
This is only one short life. What does a mataji
stand to gain if she were to make an experiment and full heartedly follow
this science? The first thing is that she stands to gain Srila Prabhupads and Sri Krishnas
direct mercy. She stands to gain a life-long happy family and marriage that
is peaceful, where no fights or arguments destroy that peace. Where the
Goddess of Fortune will come to
reside with them. She stands to gain wonderful children who will grow up
in a warm and peaceful family environment.
What does she stand to loose for following this
science? A few so-called friends who may think she is crazy (but, those so-called friends
will be destined to misery and divorce and remarriage. Why go down with them?). (And she
stands to gain friends of like mindedness who will help support her in her way of a better
life). She will loose her fear of loosing her self-esteem, but she will not loose her
self-esteem, that will increase. She will feel very good about herself knowing that
Krishna and Srila Prabhupad are pleased with her. And knowing that she is teaching her
children the best example. She will feel good when after years of marriage she can look
back and remember only a peaceful and happy marriage with no fights and arguments.
What does a mataji have to gain for not
following this. She will most likely be able to look forward to a life with more than one
husband, and living with step-children, as one marriage after another ends in the hell of
divorce. But, she will be happily left with the satisfaction that she did not have to
stoop to the level of being subordinate to any man. She will have the happiness of knowing
that she stood firm in life and demanded that as a woman she be treated equally. She will
have the happiness of knowing that she did not have to bow her head down and touch no feet
of no husband-guru. And this happy feeling will be cheered on by the other divorced and
remarried matajis whom she keeps friends with (what to speak of all the step-children she
has been able to share her joyful life with. You know, husband number 2, well he brought 2
children from his first wife into the marriage from his 3rd wife, but he also
fathered 2 children from his first wife, and another child from his second wife, and you
got to meet them all as their step-step-mother. Then, you had to say goodbye when that
marriage also ended. Your 3rd husband he brought 5 children into the house, 2
from his first wife, another 2 from his second wife and another from his 5th
wife (his 3rd and 4th wife kept their children). You
think that such things dont happen? They do, they are, inside and outside
of ISKCON. According to Srila Prabhupad, the cause of all this animal business
is the fact that the wives do no
not take to the submissive position.
She will have everything to loose for not
How to train? There is not father to instruct
you, so you must read and study what Prabhupad has instructed. And practice,
if only in your heart and mind. Practice how you will always approach your
husband with kind words
and folded hands. Practice how to be tolerant of a mans irritable nature at times.
Etc. It may sound odd, but some of the devotional Indian movies, like Ramayan or
Mahabharat, etc,, show practically how a wife should greet her husband and master (prabhu)
with folded hands and proper mood of submission. I suggest these things because we do not
have the experience in the West. Our mothers, relatives, no one lives like this.
Many Westerners havent got any experience of it at all. Theyve never seen a
wife who is so surrendered. Even in ISKCON there are very few ideal examples. Therefore
Indian movies can provide some examples we cant see other wise. One movie is the 2
part black and white movies about Lord Chaitanya made in the late 1950s. If it is
possible to view these videos watch and discuss with someone who is favorable to these
ideas what the proper mood of respect for husband is and how to learn it. I got the idea
for having my wife touch my feet, so that my children would learn it, from watching the
Gandhi movie that was made back in the early 1980s. In one scene it showed
Gandhis wife touching his feet, then his children touching and I realized
this was a needed cultural training that I wanted to give to my children.
Of course, it is a custom
my wife was more familiar with. Later I spoke with some Indians, and in India
I observed it while I was there. It is very good training to learn respect
for authority. Which
starts with respect for mother and father. Wife teaches by respecting her
Unfortunately, most people in the West will want
to discourage you. So, for now, it may be something youll have to study
and practice on your own.
My wifes mother is very good example of a
submissive wife. We brought her for a visit in 1994 to help my wife with
her last pregnancy. She stayed for 3 months. I had been looking to take
a second wife and although
Ragalekha had tried to surrender to the idea at times, she got angry with
me about it when her mother came. (Srila Prabhupad has not only allowed
it under the proper circumstances
he has at times encourages it. But, under unfavorable circumstances he has
strictly prohibited it. I have also written a book on that subject as well).
So the issue was
brought up and my wife got extremely upset, the angriest and most uncontrollable
she has ever been. She was thinking that with her mother here the issue
could be settle once and
for all. She was thinking that by blowing up and making a huge scene that
her mother would take her side and the two of them would finally get me
to drop the idea.
After making her scene, my mother-in-law, who
was trained from birth on how to be submissive to her husband, didnt
say one word to me (practically she smiled at me is all). But, she tore into
her daughter. She scolded her
and told her she was ashamed of the way she had acted. She told her she must
never raise her voice to her husband, for any reason. She chastised her saying
she must never be
disrespectful to her husband. She told my wife that I had given her nice
children, a nice home, etc., so if I wanted another wife she should keep
her mouth shut and let me take.
This is exactly the same thing Srila Prabhupad instructed in one of his very
last instructions regarding marriage:
June 28th, 1977, Room Conversation in
"Oh, yes. That is husbands duty.
She has dedicated her everything to the husband, and husband must see that
she is comfortable. This is husband. She must have children, she must
have good house, good
eating, good clothing, good ornament. Then she is satisfied. They want
these things. A woman does not mind very much, "My husband has got
more than one wife." If she
gets all the comforts of her wishes, some children and some comforts, then
she is... She does not grudge because woman knows mans psychology.
A man is not satisfied with one woman. So he must be given that. But
she must be chaste. She cannot have more than... Then
their relation is all right. If the woman allows husband"He
likes. Let him have more than one woman, but I must be chaste"this...
Our civilization is nowhere, Vedic culture."
My mother-in-law is so well behaved, so nicely
trained. And my, she is the one who needed this from her mother. Before it
was just me telling her what Srila Prabhupad said, and no one else to reinforce
it. The other devotees
told her not to let her husband step all over her and take advantage, to
stand up for her self, for her rights. But, her mother told
her exactly the same thing Srila Prabhupad taught, because she had been
properly trained as a young girl.
My mother-in-law (her name is Pujari
Harinarayan) told us that she never raised her voice, never talked back, never argued or
fought with her husband. Only one time, when he was about to risk every penny they had on
a new and risky business deal, she said she did argue with him, and she felt very badly
about it. But only that one time. Otherwise, never.
She never went to any school. She was trained at
home by her mother and father. And she was actually trained, she said, by her father and
family. She was taught that a good wife never argues with her husband, for any reason. (We
must not just teach ABCs and give no training of how to be good wife).
She then told us how after she was married her
husband was thinking of leaving her for another wife. He had got into some
bad association and his friends had introduced him to another girl. They
were trying to convince him to
leave his wife (my mother in law) for this other girl. He was carrying her
picture with him. My mother in law found the girls picture. She went to her husbands sister
to find out if she knew who it was. Her husbands sister told her what was going on.
For 2 weeks my mother in law said nothing to her husband. She tried to appear happy and
pleasant when he was at home. After 2 weeks the sister told her husband that his wife had
known what he was doing. He was astonished. His wife knew he was thinking of leaving her
for another woman? Why, for 2 weeks, she had said nothing? Why she wasnt
angry? He admitted to her what he had been up to and asked her these questions.
My mother in law
said, what could she do? She had been trained that a good wife must never
argue or get angry with her husband for any reason. She told him that he
was her lord, her master, what
ever he wanted to do, she had to let him, even if he wanted to reject her
and make her a widow. This is similar to the mood that Lord Caitanya has
for Krishna. You can trample me
down beneath Your feet or tightly embrace me as Your maid-servant. You are
always my worshipful Lord, unconditionally. In this same way, my mother in
law was instructing her
daughter the same as Srila Prabhupad has taught. A good wife cannot say anything
bad to her husband. She should never get angry or be upset with him. No matter
what the situation
My father in law immediately realized what a
wonderful, fully submissive and surrendered woman he had for a wife. It is
nature (at least a man of somewhat good quality) that if some one comes to him fully
surrendered, he automatically feels some compassion. She was fully dependent upon his
mercy. He saw that. What could he do? He couldnt leave such a fully surrendered
wife. He felt ashamed that he had even considered it. He immediately rejected his
friends bad advice and gave up all association with the other girl.
He remained faithful to his wife for the rest of his life.
My mother-in-laws training to be a fully
submissive and surrendered wife saved their marriage. As a result they had 10 children, my
wife being one, and she has other brothers and sisters who are full time devotees. So, my
mother in law was rightfully upset with her daughters very bad behavior. She was
upset that her daughter didnt learn from her the same mood a good wife should have
toward her husband. Even over such an issue as the husband seeking a second wife, the
properly trained wife must not fight. She is to keep her mouth shut and as Srila Prabhupad
says, understand it is a mans nature, and allow him. If this is to be a wifes
mood toward her husband over such an explosive issue, than what to speak
of lessor problems in the home. This is the standard the girls must be trained
to. If a wife never
fights with the husband even over what would seem to be the most volatile
topics, then there will be no fights in the home. Then family life will be
peaceful. Then good children
will be attracted to that home.
At the very least, we must understand this is
the ideal standard to strive for. If we want the happiness it can give, we must diligently
apply it to our own lives.