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Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Vox populi, vox Dei

The general understanding in India is that the voice of people is the voice of God. People from religious, economical and political backgrounds interpret the voice of God for their selfish and mundane pursuits. They interpret transcendental literature from a mundane viewpoint and create spiritual discord in society. Such interpretation is accepted as authoritative by the general public under the broad opinion of "all paths lead to the same goal" (yata mata tata patha). All paths leading to the same goal stems from a devious and envious position against the totalitarian authority of the Supreme Being Krishna. Because mankind in general is averse to submission unto the Supreme Being Krishna, such material interpretations representing the vox populi (voice of people) as vox dei (voice of God) is popular and even bonafide. However, when a true preacher of the truth presents that the vox dei as the final word of dharma for mankind, mankind will revolt. Hence genuine spiritual paths always invoke scanty followers. However, we are interested in one moon that sparkles the sky as opposed to the countless stars.

Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Takur is one such moon who had risen in the 20th century to dispel the darkness that was created by such unscrupulous interpreters of pure Vedic knowledge. Today is his glorious disappearance day and on this day I would like to copy his words for the benefit of the readers of this blog on the position of "vox populi vox dei", a latin phrase that reads "The voice of the people is the voice of God", taken from the book Sri Bhaktisiddhanta Vaibhava

Below are the words of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Takur.

"It is necessary at the outset to caution the reader against the theory of vox dei vox populi...vox populi is not vox dei, but vox dei should be vox populi. Popular opinion is not the same as God's opinion; rather, pious people should adopt His (God's) opinion. This is what the mahajanas(great souls) instruct. Cij-jada-samanvaya-vadis (those who propose mixing spirit with matter) say just the opposite - yata mata tata patha: As (there are) many opinions, as (there are) many ways. The popular voice should be the opinion of the Supreme Lord and the path of attaining Him. Yet how amazing it is that where popular opinion is dharma, love of the Supreme Lord is banished, and where public support is the testing stone for ascertaining the Absolute Truth, non-duplicitous truth disappears"

- From the book Sri Bhaktisiddhanta Vaibhava Vol one, pg 329-330

Hare Krishna

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