Fallen in love with a non-devotee

Hare Krishna, prabhujis and matajis!All glories to Srila Prabhupada! All Glories to Guru and Gauranga!Dear devotees,Let me begin by explaining my current position. I am studying in a college far away from any ISKCON centres. I live in-campus with the other students in a hostel. Despite being unable to attend mangal aratis and feasts or get to consume prasadam, I am still a vegetarian. I also chant a few rounds daily. As we are not allowed to cook in the hostel, an Indian lady supplies vegetarian food(with onion and garlic) daily. She is a non-vegetarian actually.I see my friends everyday. I live with them actually. The thing is my affection onto this boy slowly turned into love. Both of us were very close friends in the beginning. I am not very clear about how I feel towards him but I know it is hard to live without him because both of us love each other. We will be graduating in a few months and it is hard to accept the fact that we will be parted by distance after this.The problem is that he is a non-devotee and he practices some kundalini yoga. He does not believe in the superiority of Krishna consciousness. Back when he was as young as a child, his family was in ISKCON. However, due to some problems with the congregational members, they had quit ISKCON permanently and had joined another kind of yoga group(sahaja yoga). They have also become non-vegetarians after that. He doesn't likes Krishna consciousness and he does not even accepts the vedic scriptures as a legitimate source of knowledge. He insists that the Hare Krishna philosophy is somewhat fake as he never felt any special feelings/power/sensations as he could now by practising sahaja yoga. He also drinks and smokes occasionally but I am sure he would stop someday.Materially, we are good together but spiritually, we are contradicting each other in almost every aspect. He is willing to become a vegetarian but he told me that if we get married, our children should be allowed to choose whichever religion he/she wants to follow. (he practices demigod worship and does many kind of rituals). I do not agree with him. My children should only be raised as Krishna devotees because that is the sole purpose of producing children, to raise Krishna conscious children.It is difficult to find someone who understands my nature and loves me like him. I don't want to leave him as well. I have met his mother and materially, she is a very nice woman. At the same time, I do not want to fall down from the spiritual plane. I want to get initiated one day. I also want him to become a devotee. I have heard many devotees marrying non-devotees and then, their non-devotee spouses becoming devotees.Krishna is my utmost importance. But at the same time, as a woman, I will have to get married one day as per my parents' wishes and I want to get married to the one person I love. If I decline my love towards him, I doubt if I could find another person whom I would love as much as I love him. I do not want to be a hypocrite to myself and to him.Now, my questions are as follows :1) Does he have a chance to become a devotee?2) If yes, how can I help him to attain Krishna consciousness as preaching to those with no faith in Krishna is an offense to the Holy Name?3) Can I even live with him in future?4) Am I doing the right thing?I pay my humble obeisances to all the prabhus and matajis to guide me in this issue I am entangled in.Haribol!

You need to be a member of ISKCON Desire Tree | IDT to add comments!

Join ISKCON Desire Tree | IDT

Replies are closed for this discussion.


  • Hare Krishna Mataji,

    I am new to this group, when i saw this post i couldn't help but reply to it. Mataji i can fully understand the kind of thoughts that are lingering on your mind and can also understand the situation that you are going through. Mataji easier said than done but i would like to suggest that give yourself some time. I don't know since how long you have been in this relationship with him but again trust me materialistic love also fades with time. Remember when we were in our teenage we fell in love several times, sometimes infatuation and sometimes it felt like real love but with the passage of time everything subsides. Sit back back think what are your priorities and am sure nothing is superior than Krishna Consciousness. Think about what you want, what is the real goal of this birth and how much you love Krishnaji, who knows it's a test . Still if you want to, then pls have a clear cut discussion with him and also share your future plans because he may also be having his own agenda. Communication really helps then you can take decisions whatever suits you. 

    Meanwhile pray, chant and ask lord to show you the path. Ask for his mercy. Have faith all will be fine.

    Hare Krishna Hare Krishna

    Krishna Krishna Hare Hare

    Hare Rama Hare Rama

    Rama Rama Hare Hare!! Haribol...

  • Volunteer

    For the record, you dont love him. You like what you get from him and how you believe he can fulfill your selfish material needs. Bhagavatam clearly explains this. Hope someone can quote from Bhagavatam. Their is no love in material relationships. 

    One should act from the perspective that I am not this female (or male for that matter) body. I am the spirit soul and no material desires can fulfill my needs and my position is that I am the servant of Krishna and His devotees.

  • Volunteer

    A devotee always thinks about doing things that please Krishna.

    Have you heard that its harder for women to stay on the path compared to men?

    I dont have to explain this. In short women are more connected to material world.

    Women were originally created by Brahma to keep men from getting liberated easily.

    Prior to that Brahma was not successful at keeping the souls in the material world.

    It is also very easy for women to go back to Godhead, by doing little or no devotion to Krishna. 

    How is that possible, you ask?

    Very simple. Find a pure devotee. Marry him. You get 50% of whatever he does.

    You go back to Godhead with little or no effort, even if you disliked Krishna and worshiped devatas (demi gods/small part of Krishna)

    Has this ever happened?

    Yes. Tukaram got liberated and taken to spiritual world along with the human body. His wife was not even a devotee of Krishna and Krishna appeared to her more times than He did to Tukaram. Krishna was more pleased with her because she served His devotee.

    Lets look at the flip side. You marry a non devotee and he comes back in the next life as a dog. 

    What will you gain from serving a material person? Or perhaps making him your servant, which many matajis here in Iskcon attempt to do.

  • Volunteer

    Hare Krishna Mataji, All Glories to Srila Prabhupada.

    There are a few things that I would like to highlight:

    1) He isn't interested in ISKCON due to a bad experience

    2) He is content with his current yoga path

    3) He smokes, He drinks, He eats meat.

    1) Does he have a chance to become a devotee?

    This is something no one here can truly answer. It's up to you and up to Krishna. Spiritual energy overpowers the material energy, and if you continue being a good devotee, your association will brush off on him and Krishna will shed some mercy onto him. However, this can work the other way too. You might fall down and follow his path. Right now you might think that "I clearly won't do this or that" but you have to take everything with a grain of salt. There are numerous examples of sages that were engrossed in meditation but lust overpowered them into falling down, what to speak of us. 

    The remaining questions are subjective to your opinions only. Love and lust are two feelings we relate closely to each other but in essence they are very different. 

    I think the only advice one can give you is to ask Krishna. Krishna exists in everything, so take your Bhagavad Gita and ask both Krishna and Srila Prabhupada what the proper thing to do is. You won't get an immediate response, but your life will pan out such that it is revealed. Keep in mind that if things don't work out, you will feel sad since that is human nature. But just keep your mind focused on Krishna and wait till he sends your special someone or thank him for blessing you (if you end up marrying this guy). 

  • Hare Krishna Mataji,

     As I can see you sincerely love this person, in my view you should marry him without second thought. Most of the girls these days are very confused when it comes to taking decision on marriage. Now you have gone far in your relation with that guy, if you marry someone else you will spoil 3 lifes yours,your partner and lover. Why would krishna bring him into your life if he is not worthy. Please go ahead and marry him, I can show you many devotees who manhandle their wifes. There is nothing like devotee and non-devotee, there are good and bad people everywhere. How can you think of marrying someone when you love someone else. You will repent for the rest of your life if you miss him. Pray to Krishna sincerely and do your sadhana properly.


    Your servant


  • 1. He has a chance of becoming a devotee provided you become a perfect one. Start only with yourself and the rest will follow in course of time

    2.You really cannot help anyone Mataji; it is in your sicerity to become a perfect devotee that miracles happen. There is actually nothing else to it. When you become perfect ; the Lord will keep with you all that is favorable to KCon and reject everything that needs to be . Simply do your stuff.

    3. Leave the future to Krishna. This is the base of Krishna Consciousness. Simply Surrender!! Chant more and more ; things will be clear

    4. It is true premature to say ; you have to first graduate to the platform of a pure devotee ; as I said leave everything to Krishna. He is our father mother and Guide

    Read More....

  • Hare Krishna mataji,

    pamho, agtsp

    As mentioned by some others, your openness to ask devotees for guidance is very appreciated since devotees represent Krishna to the degree they are surrendered to Krishna. Please pray to Radharani and Krishna, they will show you what's best for you (BG 4.11 - http://vedabase.com/en/bg/4/11)

    Love in this material world is mostly lust in disguise. However, love is also found (example of mother's love for a child) but that is incomplete and temporary. Love means selfless service, lust is indicated by the attitude of 'what's in it for me'. Though love could be selfless, but there is no basis unless it is connected to Krishna/sat-cid-ananda (i.e. we see others as parts and parcels of Krishna and deal accordingly). Such selfless love is to be understood as part and parcel of Krishna's love for us (love of Godhead).

    Regarding decisions in life: In the Vedic tradition, there is a check and balance system to take decisions and advance in spiritual life: 'Guru, Sadhu and Shastra'. Any decision that is taken would be inline with these 3 sources.

    In your case, I would contact some senior devotee and take personal guidance if I were you. By senior, I mean those who are expert at counseling and devotee care (which you can possibly know through your local temple), those who offer advice by considering implications. The thumb rule IMO is 'Ask many, hear a few opinions, follow one'. Every devotee has good intentions, but vary in the level of guidance they can offer. Just like you approach a doctor with both good intention and good qualifications for getting advice on your health, similarly 'good qualification' is also necessary.

    For your questions, I can provide answers as a service to Krishna and the devotee community (but one who understands the specifics of your situation and is willing to provide guidance to you as a representative of Krishna is the appropriate person to answer):

    1. Jiver Svarupa Haya Krishner Nitya dasa (Everyone is a potential devotee). What you might be more interested is 'Can he become a devotee in this life (or) before you have children (if you plan to get married)''? That will depend on him (free will), you (your influence on him, i.e. providing association) and Krishna (Hladini Shakti - bhakti devi) IMO.

    2. The offense is 'To instruct a faithless person about the glories of the holy name.'. Please note the offense is about 'instructing on the GLORIES of the holyname' and not about sharing realizations or preaching in general. If preaching is offense, then Srila Prabhupada could have never transformed hippies for they didn't have a clue (typically) of who Krishna is.

    2.1 Inspiring the other person by our actions/character is important as that has leaves a mark on the heart (as opposed to the head). Krishna consciousness is there in everyone's heart - there is a sweetspot in bhakti for the soul, we just need to be able to identify it (some devotees feel home while at kirtans, some while reading scriptures, some while serving prasadam to devotees etc.).

    2.2 So in my experience, identify the sweetspot of the candidate devotee and provide more in that direction (like Srila Prabhupada used to feed prasadam and people who liked food became devotees by that also).

    3. It will depend on your desires/priorities in your life and your tolerance level IMO. Srila Prabhupada had no physical association when he came to US initially and lived with hippies but made them into Vaishnavas. On the other hand, there are also examples of devotees who lived with great devotees and fell down from their standards. So it will depend on your faith/conviction to practice bhakti and your tolerance. A pure devotee such as Srila Prabhupada could tolerate any inconvenience for his part (because of non-vaishnava culture in US at that time) and transform iron into gold (hippies into happies). As Krishna puts to Arjuna, we must be prepared to be tolerant to both ups and downs in life - BG 2.14 (vedabase.com/bg/2/14/en1).

    4. Whatever helps in intentionally pleasing Krishna is bhakti. Only a senior devotee who understands your situation and can offer 'PERSONAL' guidance can answer this question.

    Apart from above, I would just provide a remark based on my observations of several devotee families. It is the children's choice (free will) about what they want to practice. Parents cannot force them, but only inspire them and offer lots of love. Even if the children might apparently leave bhakti some time, they know where their home is and what is it all about (love of Godhead). Providing them such a convincing example is the way to offer maximum benefit to the child. Srila Prabhupada recalled the example of his remembrance of morning artis when he was a child. That was the impact of his elevated parents on his consciousness. We follow in the footsteps of such acharyas.

    Finally, bhakti is supreme factually (tattva) or in sweetness (rasa). It is the one that can conquer the supreme (by his will). Bhakti leverages the power of Krishna as opposed to dependence on one's own power (as in other yoga systems). If he believes in Bhagavad Gita, Krishna says 'Of all yogis, Bhakti yogi is the supreme yogi' (BG 6.47 - http://www.vedabase.com/en/bg/6/47).

    If he doesn't accept scriptures (shabda pramana), one only has rational (anumana pramana) and observable knowledge (pratyaksha pramana) at his/her disposal. "Logical inference will lead to truth" is a belief and is inconclusive in it's own framework (with only logic, you can neither completely prove existence of God or disprove completely the existence of God) but concludes in transcendence (one transcends logic/rationality/jnana to surrender to Vasudeva). This is beautifully explained by Krishna - BG 7.19 http://vedabase.com/en/bg/7/19.

    Ultimately, by Krishna's grace one gets Guru and by Guru's grace one gets Krishna.

    your servant and well wisher.

  • Hare Krishna, 

    Mathaji! First of all am very wished Krishna to bless all of us. 
    things are..

    1.) "GATHAM GATHAHA." 

    2.) U fell in LOVE with a person doent hav faith in KRISHNA CONSCIOUSNESS u r saying., whenever u meet him take him to nearest ISKCON and attend for Haarathi and then feast PRASADAM. Know his opinion about that event. 

    3.) Cross check all the list like caste, race, region/ religion, what if and what if not property etc etc.. because u dont have any right to hurt ur parents feelings., but ur parents hav full of rights to hurt ur feelings. later cross check from ur boy friend side. Dont ask him or force him to get into ISKCON family. just ask him to give company whenever u attend for prayers in ISKCON. 

    4.) Always Krishna says one thing that "DO UR LEVEL BEST , THEN LEAVE IT TO ME..." follow it., but dont ever spoil neither ur life nor ur life partners life (incase of ur failure, the person who enters into ur life as per ur parents.. I wish lord not to fail ur love at any cost).

    Jai Shree Krishna

  • Volunteer

    Now You may love him but what about him? Does he love You?

    if he doesn't then after marriage he will go to other women so will You like it?

    Yes, it is painful but if not a Devotee then there is very big chance of betray.

    Sometimes, karmi boys get married to a girl who is attached to him and after marriage just use her.

    You cannot hurt him because You love him.

    I know one story which i have to tell You:

    There was a girl who was married to a man whom she didn't like. The night of marriage she left him and went to a man whom she loved and got married to him. Now she was alone with that 'beloved husband' because parents were upset now.

    So for two years they lived very happily. She loved him no?! She loved him so much! They had a daughter. Then after 2 years when daughter was two years old he left home. He just left her cheating her and disappeared. So it was love marriage. BLIND LOVE.

    So how she lived rest life oooooo such a struggle. She didn't have education so no proper job she could do. She used to work as a servant...because somehow she had to bring the baby.

    So dear Mataji, please come to Your consciousness! Listen to Your parents and let them decide Your marriage. Couples should be match nicely. And first priority in match making is that both should be of same faith, religion. Otherwise as Rashmi Mataji told whole life will be a WAR.

    From now You have to think of Your future kids. If man is not responsible he may just leave the family so what will be the future of kids???

    One thing i understood that this love and attraction makes one blind. We don't care if person is genuine, if person is responsible, if he will be devoted in the future, if he doesn't look to other girls, if he really takes care of his parents, if he does proper job...we simple get blind. Where as marriage is a package of things not only attraction.

    Another important thing i have to tell You that:

    Psychologists say that man's love after marriage slowly decreases towards woman but woman's love and attachment towards husband increases after marriage. That is why arranged marriages used to work, still they work. 

    Even if You don't know Your future husband nicely but if he was matched with You and got married then slowly, slowly You ll start to love him but now You will love a proper person not some boy.

    In the lecture above Maharaj says that first thing should be matched is that if he is a Devotee of Krishna or not.

    There are so many attractive boys among non Devotees. But if i get married to them it means 4 regulative principles are gone! He will drink, smoke, do illicit things...so from such a man what kind of kids will take birth?

    Unhealthy, shudras. So do You want such kids who will spoil life of parents first.

    Another example i have to give:

    Very beautiful daughter of Devotee parents was engaged from childhood with another Devotee boy. But when she reached marriageable age she fell in love with a karmi boy who also was handsome. And ran away with him. Father had to pay some huge amount to the society that her daughter broke the engagement with another boy...but still her parents forgave her. Now she stays with him and his family. She loved and loves him much but he simple uses her. He is not care taking of her. He looks to other girls. He hurts her. Her in laws hurt her but when she comes to husband for asking for help he takes the side of in laws. So she is miserable now. No matter how much she loved him now he does not care of her so she is unhappy.


    If i were You i would listen to my seniors and parents not my foolish senses.

    Your servant,

  • Volunteer

    Dear Sandhya Mataji, please listen this lecture http://www.radhagopinathmedia.com/2015/01/leading-marriage-life-kno...

    Leading Marriage Life Knowing Well Its Purpose
    2015-01-11 Srimad Bhagavatam 10.55.09-10 - Leading Marriage Life Knowing Well Its Purpose (download mp3) and (download mp4) by Jayadva...
This reply was deleted.