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Why do sannyasis get their feet washed? How does one become a guru?

Q : I heard that A.C Bhaktivedanta Swami told His sannyasis to initiate on His behalf, so why do His sannyasis get their feet washed and have their own vandana? Sorry if it sounds offensive; it is just a query.

A : The idea is that while Srila Prabhupada was personally present, he wanted the leaders to initiate on his behalf, and after he left this world, they could become regular gurus.

Washing of the feet of sannyasis is a Vedic custom and not restricted to gurus. Also worship is permitted of the Lord, the demigods, the guru, the brahmanas, and ones superiors. It is also not restricted to gurus. See Bhagavad-gita 17.14.

Q : how does one become a guru?

A : Basically in ISKCON any disciple of Srila Prabhupada in good standing can become a guru--that is, those who are steady in their vows to chant 16 rounds (1728 times) the Hare Krishna maha-mantra daily and refrain from illicit sex, intoxication, meat eating, and gambling. There are just some recommendations from responsible leaders that are required, but I do not know exactly the extent of that.

Q : I’m interested in how one becomes guru?

A : In the Vedic tradition there are 2 types of gurus, some initiate and some instruct. Instructing gurus are called shiksha guru

Q : how does one initiate?

A : In ISKCON one has to be authorized by the GBC

Q : who is the GBC?

A : The GBC means The Governing Body Commission. This is the highest managerial authority in ISKCON

Q : how does one get into GBC?

A : One gets recommended and selected by other members. Generally a serious and respected devotee from a region. There are generally GBC representatives from each country. The aim is to manage the society in accordance with Prabhupada's desire which is to spread Krishna consciousness in a unified way.