The Truth About The "PALACE OF GOLD"

New-Vrindavan - The Palace of Gold 1982


"Why was the Palace built?" Most devotees think it was built to glorify Srila Prabhupada. Many of those Prabhupada disciples who helped build the place most likely had that in mind. But Kirtanananda's inner motive may not be so easily surmised. He is no ordinary man. The above letters reveal a side to his character that, to say the least, is highly suspicious. Seven years ago it may have been hard to present this case but the time factor has now revealed all."It is easy to be wise after the fact." As such we are not claiming to be wise in our/this analysis of Kirtanananda's character. The evidence is staring us in the face. All we have done is taken the time to open our eyes, see it, and put it in writing with the sole aim of helping other devotees avoid him.

Over the years the atmosphere of New Vrindaban has gone from bad to worse. The Appendix section of this book reveals some of the more corrupt events that take place there. This deep-rooted undercurrent of corruption reveals an entirely different purpose for the Palace of Gold. Casual devotees and tourists generally see the external show, the glitter and colors, and are very impressed. Most visitors, including devotees, have no reason to try and see beyond that. Therefore they assume that Kirtanananda must be very advanced because he appears to have been the inspiration for such a beautiful monument supposedly to Srila Prabhupada. But if we go deeper into the spirit of the New Vrindaban community-the actual minds and activities of the persons who live there and manage the place-we see something entirely different from the spiritual community and lifestyle that the Palace is supposed to represent.


Earlier on Prabhupada said about Kirtanananda, "By lips he says that he is a surrendered soul, but by action he is thinking differently." Prabhupada could always understand the heart of Kirtanananda. From this statement we know that Kirtanananda has it in him to be a very devious and cunning man. Past and present activities clearly reveal that. He may have humbled himself somewhat when his attempt to usurp the movement failed, but there is no indication that he changed at heart. So although we don't have the kind of hard evidence that ISKCON leaders seem to require, we will herein show logically that Kirtanananda has not changed in the least. His one and only desire is still to be worshipped as the guru and he doesn't care how many devotees he steps on to accomplish that aim. It is important that devotees start recognizing this. It should not be necessary for us to see hard evidence before we can act to rectify a corrupt situation.

Take Bhavananda for example. Many devotees knew he was engaging in homosexual activities. Some knew intuitively that he was fallen just by his speech, behavior, movements, etc. A few knew of his habit from directly hearing about it. But nothing was ever done about him because he was not caught in the act of a gross falldown. The GBC knew all about him. That's why he was kicked out of Vmdavana. In fact, even the townspeople of Vmdavana knew of his homosexuality but the GBC continued to cover up for him. So devotees should not have to wait for such gross evidence to manifest before they act. Devotees are meant to see spirit. What is the question of seeing and understanding spirit if we can't even see subtle manifestations of corruption staring us in the face. Brahmins are supposed to be able to see the subtle movements of others. So in the case of Kirtanananda, it is true that no one has seen him personally handing deadly drugs to a customer, personally aborting a child, personally killing a cow, personally raping a woman, personally stabbing a Godbrother in the back, but he commits all these crimes. He does it on the subtle plane. He puts out the subtle energy, and those around him, Kuladri, Dharmatma, Dulal, Advaita, Sudhanu, they manifest the corruption on the gross plane. To the gross materialists, he has kept up a good front and has fooled most of the devotees thus far. But just a Bhavananda was finally caught, so also Kirtanananda will eventually be caught. If we wait for the corruption to come to the gross plane however, it will go public and do much more damage to the movement than if it's nipped early in the subtle stages. Now that Bhavananda has been grossly exposed, all the people who have been worshipping him all these years are outraged. You can better believe that many of them are going to file lawsuits against ISKCON for keeping such a debauch propped up on a throne.

Kirtanananda is many, many times worse than Bhavananda as these letters reveal. Even Bhavananda never attacked Prabhupada so viciously. Kirtanananda must be recognized for what he is now-before the evidence becomes so gross that the whole world finds out about it. When contamination comes to the gross plane it always manifests in either killings, rapes, child molestation, wife-stealing, drug dealing and abuse, etc. All these things have/are going on at New Vrindaban. They just haven't manifested so grossly yet that the whole world wants to hear about it. But if it continues, it will come out. If Kirtanananda gets desperate, he could try something comparable to the Jim Jones insanity.

In this next section of our analysis of Kirtanananda we will go into the psychology of a tactic commonly known as "bait and switch." Kirtanananda is very expert at this technique and has used it to perfection in attracting devotees as well as tourists, Indians, etc., to spend their time and money to build Kirtanananda an empire.


New Vrindaban never really got off the ground until the Palace was completed several years after Srila Prabhupada's departure. Prabhupada didn't outright condemn New Vrindaban but he never promoted it in any substantial way either. Especially when it became apparent that Kirtanananda and Hayagriva were not going to transfer it into the Society's name. Therefore New Vrindaban remained small, austere, and out of the picture, with very little solid expansion right up through 1977. During all this time Kirtanananda enjoyed a relatively good reputation since very few of the devotees who were around during the 1967-68 incident were still in the movement. Those who were, did not five at New Vrindaban. Most of the new devotees thought of Kirtanananda Swami as the first sannyasi and the oldest disciple (age wise). These qualifications gave him respectability since many of the newcomers were young enough to be his sons.

During these early years Kirtanananda was preaching that no one could approach Srila Prabhupada except through him since naturally, "No one could know Prabhupada as well as Kirtanananda did." The older disciples, the GBC, etc., who knew of Kirtanananda's previous envy, were not awed by Kirtanananda's self-proclaimed air of divinity. But the workers at New Vmdavana were so isolated from the rest of the ISKCON world that they never dreamed that Kirtanananda could be anything other than the "dearmost" of Prabhupada and a pure devotee. They were easily fooled by the seeming maturity of Kirtanananda. Few devotees knew of his black side. Add to this, the fact that devotees in general are trained to ignore the faults in others, it is no wonder that Kirtanananda's past was practically forgotten.


Around 1974 Kirtanananda had an idea. He wanted to build a great temple to attract thousands of devotees. He had money coming in from various sources, including drug sales, and he was getting a few steady workers, so he began construction. Originally the Palace was intended to be a Radha-Krsna temple. It was a major project and would take years to complete. Generally there were only five or ten devotees working on it. Then one day in June-they say-Kirtanananda had the revelation that first he must build a home for Srila Prabhupada, stating: "One can only approach Krsna through guru." This sentiment certainly sounded good and it impressed some of Prabhupada's disciples. Thus more devotees came to assist Kirtanananda in his "noble" project. But even at the time of Prabhupada's disappearance, it was still just a dirty construction site unrecognizable as a building. Not only was Prabhupada not able to ever live in it, he never even set foot in it.


Kirtanananda certainly has a certain degree of charisma but he didn't have the purity to attract very many devotees to New Vrindaban. But he knew that if he was going to expand his project in a big way, he was going to need a lot of help. He realized he was going to have to attract Prabhupada's disciples to work for him. If he could convince them that New Vrindaban was actually very dear to Prabhupada, then in that way he could trick them to come and work for him. This strategy worked very well. The more the Palace got built, the more he was respected as a great disciple of Prabhupada. He became very expert at glorifying Prabhupada with his mouth, "but thinking something else." He is the world's greatest expert at bait and switch. During construction of the Palace emphasis was always either on Prabhupada or pleasing Prabhupada through Kirtanananda. But the property was never transferred. Imagine-all that free labor simply by saying, "Jai Prabhupada." Prabhupada however was never fooled by the hp service of Kirtanananda. He was interested in seeing whether the deed to the property had been transferred to the Society's name. He certainly hadn't forgotten Kirtanananda's inner "designs." In fact, there was only one mention of the Palace in all of Prabhupada's personal letters.


Kirtanananda's inner designs were certainly known to Prabhupada but they were not exactly being kept a secret either. Many devotees who were so-called initiated by Prabhupada openly let it be known that they were really devotees of Kirtanananda. One such devotee is Maha Buddhi dasa (Param Brahma's brother). His ex-wife explained to me her ex-husband's mood, which represents the mood of many at New Vrindaban, was "I had to take initiation from Prabhupada, because Kirtanananda wasn't allowed to initiate me." She even said that her husband resented Prabhupada for his not allowing Kirtanananda to initiate. In the beginning New Vmdavana was made up of a mixture of these foolish neophytes like Maha Buddhi, who were actually worshipers of Kirtanananda, and Prabhupada's disciples, who had been led to believe that new Vrindaban was a bone fide ISKCON project.

As the years went by, the devotees exclusively devoted to Kirtanananda were encouraged and given more and more facility. They increased in number. The devotees more interested In Srila Prabhupada however decreased. Since Nov. 1977, not one devotee of Prabhupada has gone to New Vrindaban and stayed there unless he became a Kirtanananda worshiper. Today New Vrindaban is made up exclusively of Kirtanananda worshipers. This is the proof of what New Vrindaban is all about. It doesn't matter how much love and devotion one many have for Prabhupada and Krsna. If you don't worship Kirtanananda, you're a dog at New Vrindaban. Srila Prabhupada is respected as one respects a statue of an ancient hero. None of New Vrindaban's residents go to the Palace except to take money from the tourists. Kirtanananda used to-and may still-go to the Palace mangala-aratik along with a few brahmacaris. This was / is necessary to keep up the front. Otherwise no one at all would ever go there. Then it would be blatantly obvious that it was built with the sole purpose of, "fooling the innocent public."


In the very important letter to Paramananda quoted earlier, Kirtanananda's use of bait and switch tactics is blatantly revealed. In that letter it is clear that he was trying to convince devotees that they could only approach Prabhupada through himself. In the beginning, devotees are naturally attracted to Prabhupada and his teachings. Attracted to Prabhupada in this way, Kirtanananda convinces them that they can only approach Prabhupada, and Krsna, through himself. Those who are less intelligent naturally wind up worshipping Kirtanananda. Now Kirtanananda has so many of these blind followers that he really doesn't want Prabhupada's disciples to come around anymore. He can now attract new people on the basis of his propped up seat, his tourist attraction, and the material facility he can offer people. Previously he had hoped his sannyasa certificate would be sufficient to prove he was a bona fide guru, but Prabhupada took that away from him. So he had to put up the front again, only this time he did it with the Palace.

This is the real reason why the Palace was built. Today the Palace is a dead monument, maintained like a museum, and used a tourist attraction for which they charge an outrageous fee of $4 per person for the 20 minute tour. Nearly 100 outside workers are on the payroll who build and maintain the entire project. Many of them are also included on the "500" person list of residents that Kirtanananda flaunts. The money to hire all these workers and buy the construction materials comes from drug sales, which include the look-alike drugs such as lydocaine. Kirtanananda was always a drug dealer. We have one testimony that as early as 1970 he started the KSS (Krsna's Secret Service). Much of the Palace was built from the drug money gotten by Charantana, Advaita, Svarupa, Syamakunda (who was busted), Tirtha (who murdered Chakradhari), garbage John and many more. These are just a few of the "devotees" that I personally have talked to that told me stories of their drug dealings for Kirtanananda Swami. There are many addicts living at New Vrindavana who use and sell drugs. When the Palace restaurant burned down, Kirtanananda is well-known to have said, "Krsna must not like that kind of money."


Another testimony as to what the Palace represents today could be ascertained by interviewing the devotees who actually built the place. While they were working on it, they no doubt thought they were working for Prabhupada. When they inevitably discovered that Kirtanananda had other designs for their labor, they became outraged. Now they literally curse themselves for having contributed to Kirtanananda's "glory." Take for instance Narendra dasa who designed and built most of the stained glass decorating the Palace today. Here are some of the highlights of his tragedy.

After escaping New Vrindaban he struggled, and is still struggling, to get his stained glass business off the ground. Adding to his financial struggles were the expense of having to see a therapist just to help him get over the hatred he felt for Kirtanananda. Now he is struggling to get custody of his only daughter, Nitya lila, before his ex-wife foolishly takes her back to New Vrindaban. Narendra was so severely mistreated by Kirtanananda that he literally does not want to hear about Krsna consciousness anymore. Who can blame him? The average devotee simply cannot imagine how a religion that supports such a corrupt debauch as Kirtanananda can have anything whatsoever to do with spiritual life. Narendra once built, as a gift for Kirtanananda, a window depicting the Sad Bhuja form of Lord Caitanya worth $5,000. Kirtanananda never even said thank you. Narendra's eyes slowly opened as to the man's real character and so he finally decided to start life over again somewhere else. Kirtanananda had a going away present for him. He sent a fifteen man goon squad to steal whatever they could of Narendra's equipments, or force him to pay a $1,000 exit fee. Narendra had to comply just to get away from the place with his business (This is very common at New Vrindaban). Otherwise he would have been utterly ruined. Memories of New Vrindaban and Kirtanananda are so painful to Narendra that he seldom talks of his twelve years in ISKCON any longer.

So the conclusion is that Kirtanananda has not been purified by his career in Krsna consciousness. This is because his motive was not to serve Prabhupada, but to use Prabhupada's legacy to further his own guru business. One cannot make spiritual advancement by such thinking. Krsna is no fool. He knows everyone's heart perfectly. Eventually everyone has got to pay. Prabhupada sums up the position of these "gurus" very elucidly as follows:

"By a false display of religious sentiments, they present a show of devotional service while indulging in all sorts of immoral activities (1). In this way they pass as spiritual master (2) and devotees of God. Such violators of religious principles (3) have no respect (4) for the authoritative acaryas, the holy teachers in the strict disciplic succession. To mislead the people in general, they themselves become so-called acaryas, but they do not even follow the principles of the acaryas (5).

"These rogues are the most dangerous elements (6) in human society. Because there is no religious government, they escape punishment (7) by the law of the state. They cannot, however, escape the law of the Supreme, who has clearly declared in Bhagavad-gita (16.19-20) that envious demons (8) in the garb of religious propagandists shall be thrown into the darkest regions of hell. Sri Isopanisad confirms that these pseudo-religionists are heading toward the most obnoxious place in the universe after completion of their spiritual master business (9), which they conduct simply for sense gratification (10)." (Sri Isopanisad 12)

From reading the early letters about the character of Kirtanananda, and interviewing several dozen devotees who have been burned by him, we can easily see that this above description is actually a description of Kirtanananda. Here are some of the reasons why this is so:

1. Kirtanananda is a drug dealer. He passes women around amongst his workers as though they were all whores. He does not recognize anyone as a Godbrother and has no respect for the rights of others. He directly tries to break up marriages if it furthers his own profit, adoration and distinction. Whether or not he is still engaged in homosexual activities will all come out in due course of time. There is strong indication that he is.

2. He always wanted to be a spiritual master. Even before joining ISKCON he was the guru in his local clique of friends, most of whom were also homosexual. He was into black magic. This combination earned him the title "weird Keith". After meeting Prabhupada he only waited one year before trying to usurp Prabhupada's movement. He actually attempted to legally keep Prabhupada from entering the country. Even after he so-called came back, there are numerous instances where he was exposed as attempting to surpass Prabhupada. Now he is fully engrossed in posing as a spiritual master. Prabhupada directly stated in one letter that "he wants to be a spiritual master by disobeying his spiritual master."

3. For a sannyasi, the first regulative principle is to not have any connection with women. Kirtanananda violates that principle constantly. He goes so far as to say that all women have an eternal relationship with him, but that their husbands are not important. This preaching is not only a violation, but it is Ravana philosophy. Actually it is worse. At least Ravana wanted to enjoy the women himself. Kirtanananda thinks women smell like fish. He steals women for the money they bring in and to pass around amongst his workers. A sannyasi is supposed to know sastra. Kirtanananda does not know sastra at all which is why he seldom quotes it. It is even rumored that he has not read all of Prabhupada's books. But he constantly concocts statements and policies such as putting a crown on Prabhupada, authorizing women to have sex with the sankirtana leader, authorizing an abortion in an underage girl (because of the previous policy), etc. (Appendix 12)

4. Prabhupada stated that Kirtanananda thinks guru and sastra are tyranny. That means no respect. Why should we think that he changed?

5. Prabhupada set certain standards of moral behavior, compassion, honesty, etc. Kirtanananda does not follow those standards. For example Prabhupada was very compassionate and thoughtful not to interfere in marriages. He always told the women to be fully devoted to their husbands. Kirtanananda openly tells the women to fully devote themselves to himself, even if it means totally neglecting the husband and children. In this way he controls the women and so naturally the husbands have to stay there also.

6. There are many dangerous elements in society. Thieves, rapists, murderers, etc. But here Prabhupada says that the most dangerous are those who exploit others in the name of religion. They are the most dangerous because they hurt people in the deepest way possible-their souls. This world has only one purpose; to teach people to surrender to God. When society is infested with rogues posing as saints, that stops the progress of human life. Thus most people are not inclined to trust anyone.

7. Since the government is demoniac, the demoniac "gurus" also escape punishment. But even the GBC falls in the category of a Godless government. They have allowed these "rogues" to remain in their positions even after having been exposed. For example the GBC determined that Kirtanananda interfered with, and destroyed the marriage of Sulocana dasa. But because the GBC is essentially a Godless body, the GBC had no potency to rectify Kirtanananda and return Sulocana's sons to him. Thus he escaped punishment.

8. Here Prabhupada uses terminology that scares the sentimentalists who permeate ISKCON half to death. We have hardly met a devotee who has the guts to call a spade a spade. But the fact is, the current gurus, and especially Kirtanananda are nothing but envious demons as described above. If they were ever sincere, that remains to be seen.

9. The guru business is certainly lucrative. There is no need to go into the details of how the "gurus" have stuffed their pockets with money and luxuries. It is all too well known. Not a single one of them has even the slightest concept of simple living or austerity anymore. They claim they are beyond all that.

10. As of this writing it is unknown what different kinds of sense gratification Kirtanananda enjoys aside from the profit, adoration, and distinction. For some reason, the GBC always waits for the sense gratification to hit the lower levels before they recognize that the "guru" is actually nothing but a sense-gratifier.