The Clerk of Jyotirmath
Namaste' and have a good day!
Apparently, the Swami Prakashanand Saraswati gave Robert Kropinsky a 'letter of introduction' in order to get an audience with the Swami Swaroopanand at Guru Dev's oldest living desciple birthday celebration in Brindaban. But, when the Swami Swaroopanand finds out that the Swami Prakashanand hosted a recent VHP-America event, the Swaroopanand may wise up to the Prakashanand's game.
For sure the Prakashanand won't be invited to any more birthday party celebrations at the Swaroopanand's house! The Swaroopanand is opposed to the VHP and considers that rascally outfit to be nothing less than a gang of terrorists and radical extremists. I have spoken to the Maharaj Swami Prakashanand and he confirms this story.
The 'former disciples' of Guru Dev, except the Swami Swaroopanand, are all sock-puppits for the RSS - that's common knowledge. There are probably two or three former disciples of Brahmanand still alive today - what's important is what the *current* disciples in the desciplic lineage of Swami Brahmanand have to say.
It is a fact that the Swami Swaroopanand and the Swami Prakashanand are no longer in the disciplic line of Guru Dev, having gone over to adopt the teachings of other saints, babas, and gurus. Swami Vasudevanand Saraswati is currently the *sole representative Guru Dev's lineage*, according to Vidyasankar Sundaresan. Vasudevanand was present at the appointment of a Mahamandaleswara of the Mahanirvani Akhada in 1995, Swami Nityanand, according to Hinduism Today.
"Only the lineage of Vasudevananda (through Santananda) can be traced directly to Brahmananda, without any interruptions." - Vidyasankar Sundaresan
It is a fact that the Kashi Vidvat Parishad has attempted to place a political puppet on the Jyotirmath seat on at least two separate occasions after Guru Dev's passing - Swami Krishnabodha and Swami Swaroopanand. Mr. Sundaresan notes "...the Kashi Vidvat Parishad and the Akhila Bharatiya Dharmasangha have tried to exercise a right over Jyotirmath for the third time."
However, there is one undisputed fact - neither Swaroopanand nor Prakashanand's name was listed in Guru Dev's will. Another fact, is that in the Kropinsky interview Swami Swaroopanand does not deny the validity of Guru Dev's will. In fact, "...none of the civil suits in this dispute seems to have been framed in terms of contesting the legal bona fides of Brahmananda's will" according to Mr. Sundaresan.
A new lawsuit was filed, on the grounds that according to Brahmananda's will, Dwarakesanand should have been appointed in case Shantanand stepped down! Thus, states Mr. Sundaresan, "...notwithstanding what was privately thought about the will and its legitimacy, its terms were co-opted, as a strategy to displace Vishnudevanand."
Apparently, the Brahmacharya Mahesh was with with Guru Dev at his passing, but I don't know how anyone would know what Guru Dev said just before he attained Mahasamadhi. I doubt that a Saint like Guru Dev would concern himself with the doings of mere clerk, would he? In point of fact, Mahesh Yogi used to be Brahmanand Saraswati's 'secretary', according to my sources - so it would be perfectly logical for Guru Dev to call for Mr. Mahesh.
Guru Dev had composed a will previously and had it registered in Allahabad. But that's beside the point because Guru Dev's death was considered untimely, brought on by natural causes, according to the attending physician and the coroners report. If true, Guru Dev would hardly be calling a clerk, in the middle of dying!
Besides, how a 'mere clerk' would come to be sitting beside a dying Saint and carrying out his last instructions doesn't make much sense unless Mahesh Yogi was much more than a clerk. It certainly boggles the mind to imagine how a low-level scribe could somehow get an audience with a fully-realized Saint sitting on his deathbed, then somehow get ahold of Guru Dev's physical body, wrestle it away from all the other Ashram inmates, put it on a train, and make all the arrangements for the national funeral down in Kashi, then get Guru Dev's last will and testament out of the Jyotirmath Trust at the National Bank, where it was registered, and then go about installing the succussor to the Shankaracharya Seat, according to a forged will.
That's a real stretch for a mere clerk!
That is, unless Mahesh Yogi was much more than a mere clerk for thirteen years. Apparently Brahmacharya Mahesh was the Adminstrator of the Jyotirmath Ashram Trust and it was the Brahmacharya Mahesh who made all the arrangements for Guru Dev's tours and yagyas. That's not surprising to me in light of what Mahesh Yogi has been able to accomplish for his own program, and that was starting from scratch!
Never let it be said that Marshy doesn't know a thing or two about how to organize a yoga camp! From what I've read, it was the Brahmacharya Mahesh who was instumental in introducing the President of India to Guru Dev. There's a famous photo of Brahmacharya Mahesh standing next to the President of India - quite a feat, don't you think?
Of course, I wasn't there, but it seems to me that Brahmacharya Mahesh was distrustful of some of the other disciples, and with good reason. Imagine what would have happened if the Swami Prakashanand had been appointed and accepted to the Jyotirmath seat by that committee - you'd have a quasi-dualistic, rasavada proponent sitting on the seat of the non-dualist Shankaracharya. Now that would be a topsy-turvy chain of events! It's no wonder that the Mahesh Yogi was eager to fulfill the stipulations in Guru Dev's will right away.
The Bharata Dharma Mahamandala, Kashi Vidvat Parishad, and the Akhila Bharatiya Dharmasangha were all present at the installation of Guru Dev's successor, Shree Swami Shantanand Saraswati. According to The Times of India, Swami Shantanand was installed with all due pomp and ceremony. Shantanand meditated for over an hour in a public reception.