Krishna consciousness is multi-colored
Due to his spiritual empowerment and his purity Shrila Prabhupada was able to explain the deeply esoteric philosophy of Krishna consciousness in a way that could be grasped by people with no external background in Vedanta (philosophical conclusions of the Vedic scriptures) or Bhakti. Certainly in essence our philosophy is very simple, as stated in many verses in the Gita, such as 9.34 where Krishna tells us how to be Krishna conscious:
"Engage your mind always in thinking of Me, become My devotee, offer obeisances to Me and worship Me. Being completely absorbed in Me, surely you will come to Me."
At the same time that KC is simple it is also backed up by a deep philosophical basis. To varying degrees we require this knowledge to give us evidence for our faith in the simple processes. For example, chanting Hare Krishna can be done by a child or an illiterate or simple person, yet a person who is engaged in chanting the holy name is considered to have realized the purport of all the Vedas. From the Shirmad Bhagavatam [3.33.7]it is said:
"O my Lord, a person who is chanting Your holy name, although born of a low family like that of a candala [dog-eater], is situated on the highest platform of self-realization. Such a person must have performed all kinds of penances and sacrifices according to Vedic rituals and studied the Vedic literatures many, many times after taking his bath in all the holy places of pilgrimage. Such a person is considered to be the best of the Aryan family."
By the grace of advanced devotees people can take up the simple yet profoundly deep process of Bhakti yoga and chanting the holy name. What they are really doing is continuing the process from previous births, so in that sense we don't "make" devotees, but find them by helping to uncover their dormant spiritual life. Krishna.com is meant to help facilitate that in its' readers.
We often see (which is confirmed by our previous acharyas) that devotees make rapid advancement up to the point where they left off in their previous life. Then they discover the vast intermediate zone which seems like a very long plateau. In a sense this is where the real work begins.
Where at first Krishna consciousness seemed very black and white, and we can perfectly explain everything, we discover that the deeper we go into the philosophy, the more shades of gray we find. Or as I like to say, we discover that Krishna consciousness is multicolored, with so many hues and nuances of color.
This can be disconcerting at first, yet we have to become comfortable with answers that may not be either this, or that, but sometimes both may be true. We have to harmonize apparent contradictions in the light of our guru, the previous acharyas or teachers, the scriptures, and our own mature experience and spiritual insights from many years of practice. (sadhu-shastra-guru-vakya, cittete kariya aikya)
The point of this small discussion is to point out that there are stages of development which have varieties of deeper understanding, in our unfolding as Krishna bhaktas. What we first thought was Krishna consciousness may be turned on its' head.
What I thought Krishna consciousness was 37 years ago, and what I think and feel it is today are very different. Some of the things ARE the same of course--Krishna is still the Supreme Personality of Godhead, chanting Hare Krishna is still the yuga dharma etc. Yes, there ARE black and white aspects of the philosophy, yet my understanding of many of the details have changed. For instance in how I relate to the world, other people, devotees, and to Krishna.
This could be a whole other discussion, yet I try to only give some bites size blogs that don't go on too long.
I will end by sharing a broad yet most basic area that has changed over the years. I see Krishna consciousness is as much deeper and profound, yet interestingly as far more accommodating, inclusive and broad than I ever would have dreamed or thought in my early days. At the same time there is a place for a more narrow view, especially in the beginning or to make certain points according to time, place and circumstances.
In the beginning the black and whiteness of the presentation of Krishna consciousness was very comforting. Now that aspect is not. Now I revel in the understanding that Krishna consciousness is multi-colored and so accommodating!!