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Is Religious Conversion a Necessity?

PostPosted: Tue Apr 20, 2010 10:27 am
by backtohome
Question: Is Religious Conversion a Necessity?

Dear Gurudeva,

When every religion has good scriptures why do we need to convert them to our religion?

Just because Christianity has converted some portion of Vaisnavas in India, do you think converting people to Krishna consciousness is really necessary? Many people all over the world hate these conversions.

Why don't we have laws to restrict conversions? Either proper understanding about these religious conversions should be there, or a law should be enforced to stop conversion. In this way at least the unnecessary hatred for conversions will not arise.

These religious conversions are not a necessity when all the religions have good scriptures. This applies to Christianity and ISKCON because both are converting people worldwide. Of course, proportionately Christianity is converting more in numbers than ISKCON can ever dream.

Your servant,

Prem Krishna


Answer: There is No Such Thing As Religious Conversion

There is no such thing as religious conversion. Conversion from one religion to another is not possible because there is no such thing as different religions. The idea of different religions is a manmade concoction because God has given us only one religion, to become His pure devotees. This same one religion has been taught by all the great spiritual masters throughout history. But the foolish followers of these great teachers have repeatedly taken the pure teachings of these great masters and politicized them by creating various sects of religion, which fight with one another. This is not at all authorized. The only real conversion that can take place is to convert from irreligion to religion. If one thinks that he has converted from one religion to another, he is living in an illusion. Such a person has not yet attained the platform of religion. He requires to be converted from the platform of irreligion to the platform of genuine religion. This is the only conversion that makes any sense.

For example, previously before I met my spiritual master I was a Christian in name only who aspired to become a true Christian. Jesus Christ was a spiritual hero for me. I desired to become a perfect Christ-like person, but I did not know how to do this. So I prayed to God to help me, and He mercifully brought me into contact with my spiritual master, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, who then taught me how to become a perfect Christian by being fully absorbed in love of God 24 hours daily. So I was not converted from one religion to another. Rather I was converted from being a pseudo Christian into being a genuine Christian.

So the Krishna consciousness movement is not a religious movement in the common sectarian sense of the word "religion." We are instead a scientific movement teaching everyone the technique of how to purify their consciousness so that they can meet God face to face, eye to eye. It has nothing to do with this sect or that sect. It is the universal science of spiritual perfection that can be used by anyone whether they are a Hindu, a Christian, a Muslim, or a Jew, etc. to become perfect in their religious practice.

This true understanding of religion is grossly lacking in today's society with the result being that the world is disintegrating more and more every day into a hopelessly chaotic quagmire. The Krishna consciousness movement therefore wants to save the world society from its imminent collapse by educating everyone in the science of genuine religion, to become a pure lover of God.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari