Dr. Jai Maharaj jai at mantra.com
Fri Jun 20 18:43:57 UTC 1997

[Original Subject header restored]

Namaste! At 4:37 p.m. on  6/20/97 BST, 
Srinivasan Pichumani <srini at engin.umich.edu>
> Dr. Dermot Killingley wrote:
>> This parallels the preference of ISKCON to call 
>> itself a Vedic rather than a Hindu movement. On the 
>> other hand, it is hard to see how *every* . . .
> [...]
> At least in India, where there are a good many Parsis, 
> forming a distinctive community, 'Parsi religion' clearly
> refers to Zoroastrianism.   -Srini.

The name of ISKCON has entered the discussion.  I observe
that members of the cult publicize the truth, but sometimes 
write whatever suits their purpose without regard to the 
facts -- here is an example:

=== ISKCON Says Lunar Landings A Government Hoax ===================
 : From: epement at ripco.com (Eric Pement)
 : Subject: Re: Vedic scriptures and language meaning
 : Date: Thu, 16 Nov 1995
 :   . . . When I first heard that the Krishna devotees had an
 : unusual cosmology, it was from a young man in his mid-twenties
 : who had been very close to the devotees and had visited several
 : Krishna temples.  He told me (circa 1980 or 1981, I think) that
 : he has personally been present when Prabhupada had spoken in a
 : lecture that the moon landings were faked because the moon is a
 : spiritual planet, and that since the astronauts didn't see what
 : he (Prabhpada) "knows" is there - I can't fill in the gaps here
 : -- that therefore the U.S. government's claim to have visited
 : the moon must be false.  The man left the Krishna movement, and
 : was astounded at this belief.
 :   I didn't think much more about ISKCON cosmology for a year or
 : two until Jim Valentine, a religious scholar in Milwaukee with
 : an incredibly good library of ISKCON/BBT literature, told me
 : about the Srimad Bhagavatam, 5th canto, part 2, where the
 : cosmology is laid out (along with the Vedic concept of hell or
 : "hellish planets", which makes the Krishnas' often-voiced
 : condemnation of the Christian concept of hell seem rather
 : ironic).
 :   Then in 1992 or 1993, I bought a copy of VEDIC COSMOGRAPHY AND
 : ASTRONOMY, by Richard L. Thompson (Bhaktivedanta Book Trust,
 : 1990).  Although Thompson has a Ph.D. in mathematics from
 : Cornell, I was amazed at the things he was attempting to explain
 : or scientifically justify.  I will grant that Thompson is an
 : educated man -- however, he is in the unfortunate position of
 : having to intellectually justify some very bizarre assertions.
 :   If you will read pages 130-134, you will see an extended
 : discussion in which Thompson attempts (unsuccessfully, I
 : believe) to justify Prabhupada's claims about the moon.  "Srila
 : Prabhupada has often said that the astronauts have never
 : actually visited the moon." (pg. 130)  From here there are many
 : references and quotes from Prabhupada, fully documented.  I
 : don't have time to reproduce them here.
 :   The point is, this book is published by the Bhaktivedanta Book
 : Trust, and gives the full source quotes, with Thompson's
 : attempts to rescue Prabhupada's credibility.  In desperation,
 : even Thompson himself suggests that moon landings might have
 : been intentional government hoaxes (pg. 133, 163-164).  You
 : might like to look at this in more detail.
 : Kind regards,
 : Eric Pement <epement at ripco.com>

One prays that the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust will remove the
word "Vedic" from the book by Richard L. Thompson.  The Vedic
sciences do not state that man did not land on the Moon.

Jai Maharaj
Om Shanti

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