Collaborate with us to invoke and fully manifest Srila Prabhupada's Vani-presence.
740105 - Lecture SB 01.16.08 - Los Angeles
Pradyumna: (leads chanting of verse) (Prabhupāda and devotees repeat)
- na kaścin mriyate tāvad
- yāvad āsta ihāntakaḥ
- etad-arthaṁ hi bhagavān
- āhūtaḥ paramarṣibhiḥ
- aho nṛ-loke pīyeta
- hari-līlāmṛtaṁ vacaḥ
- (SB 1.16.8)
(leads chanting of synonyms) (break)
Translation: "As long as Yamarāja, who causes everyone's death, is present here, no one shall meet with death. The great sages have invited the controller of death, Yamarāja, who is the representative of the Lord. Living beings who are under his grip should take advantage by hearing the deathless nectar in the form of this narration of the transcendental pastimes of the Lord."
Prabhupāda: So Yamarāja, Yamarāja is the representative of the Lord. Just like the police chief. The... What is called, the police chief? The superintendent or what?
Prabhupāda: Commissioner. Commissioner of police. He is representative of government. So the police department is fearful department for the criminals, not for the law-abiding persons. Similarly, Yamarāja, who is the superintendent of death... Death is certainly cruel. At any moment death can stop all our activities. Nobody can protest. That is not possible. So... And nobody wants death also. That is also fact. But nobody can stop death also. The so-called scientific advancement, they cannot stop death. You can talk all kinds of nonsense of advancement of life, but after all, you have to die. Big, big scientists, professors, they talk so many things, but when death came, he could not save him by his scientific process. Because death is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Who can check? Therefore the Lord's name is Ajita, Ajita. Ajita means one who is never conquered by any other means. Sva-rāṭ, self-independent. These are the words used. Sva-rāṭ. Sva-rāṭ means fully independent. Nobody can make Him dependent. That is Kṛṣṇa. That is God. Every one is dependent, but Kṛṣṇa is not dependent. Therefore He is called sva-rāṭ.
So Mahārāja..., the Yamarāja... Yamarāja is representative. There are twelve recognized representative of God—we have many times cited this verse: Svayambhū, Brahmā. Lord Brahmā is representative. And Nārada, great sage Nārada, he is representative. Śambhu, Lord Śiva, he is representative. Kapila, Kapiladeva, he is also representative. Kumāra, the four Kumāras, Sanaka, Sanat-kumāra. And Manu, Manu, Vaivasvata Manu. This is the age of Vaivasvata Manu. Manu received the transcendental knowledge from his father, Vivasvān, the sun-god. So... And Prahlāda. Prahlāda Mahārāja is also representative of God. Prahlāda, Janaka. King Janaka, father of Sītādevī or father-in-law of Lord Rāmacandra, he is also representative. Gṛhastha. This Janaka-rāja is gṛhastha, householder, and Nārada is brahmacārī. Lord Brahmā is also gṛhastha. Lord Śiva is also gṛhastha; Kumāra, brahmacārī; Kapila, brahmacārī. So there are many. Yamarāja is also gṛhastha. Śukadeva Gosvāmī is brahmacārī. So it doesn't matter whether one is brahmacārī or householder or a sannyāsī. He must try to become confidential servant of the Lord. Then he becomes the representative, representative of God, Kṛṣṇa.
So Yamarāja is a great devotee, Vaiṣṇava. We should not be afraid of Yamarāja. Those who are devotees, they are... Yamarāja says that "I offer them respect, my obeisances." He advised his messengers that "Don't go to my devotees. They are to be offered respect by me. You go to persons who are reluctant to chant Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra. You go there and bring them here for judgment." The Christian also believe "the day of judgment." The judgment is given by Yamarāja. But who goes to his court for judgment? The criminals, those who are not devotees, those who are not Kṛṣṇa conscious, they go to the court of Yamarāja.
So in other words, it is the duty of the Yamarāja to see that everyone is becoming Kṛṣṇa conscious. That is his duty, just as the police department's duty is to see that everyone is law-abiding, acting according to the law of the state. Police is not anyone's enemy. He is enemy to the criminals, not to the law-abiding citizens. I have seen it, personal experience. In one of my friends' house there was burglary. The police inquiry was there. So we were going in another's house, the policemen and we also. So we saw in distant place a few men were fleeing. They were going away, hastily running away. So I inquired the police, "Why these people are running away?" So he answered, "You do not know, Bābājī, that they are criminals. Because we are passing, they are thinking, 'Now the police is coming to arrest us,' although there is no purpose. How one can arrest? But they are..." What is called, this? Culprit mind is always suspicious. Because they are culprit, criminals, as soon as they saw, "The policeman is coming," they began to go away, run away.
So Yamarāja is not to be afraid by the devotees. This is the purpose. And it is the Yamarāja's duty to see that these rascals who have forgotten Kṛṣṇa, or God, and come here to enjoy material sense gratification, they must be punished. Because material sense gratification is always sinful. We may create so many artificial laws, "This is good, and this is bad." Just like in your country, drinking is good, and in some other country, drinking is bad. In your country, meat-eating is no offense, but in the Vedic civilization, meat-eating is one of the foremost sinful activity. So here the so-called "good" and "bad," they are all mental creation. Otherwise, everything is bad, nothing good. Here, only goodness is to become Kṛṣṇa conscious. Otherwise, everything is bad. So-called ethics, morality and law, good and bad, they are all rascaldom. It has no meaning. Because they are punishable. They can avoid the punishment of the law of the state. Just like in the government in every state, there is some punishment if one kills another living entity. Another man, not living entity. There is punishment. The law punishes. If you kill somebody, if you commit murder, then you will be punished. This is punishable. But because it is man-made law, therefore it is defective. A man is a living entity, and a cow is also a living entity. Why this discrimination, that if a man is murdered or killed, that murderer must be punished?
But that law is not permissible in God's law. In God's law, either you kill a man or you kill an ant, you are punishable. You are punishable. You cannot avoid this. Because in the eyes of God, the Brahmā, Lord Brahmā, and a small ant, they are all sons of God.
- sarva-yoniṣu kaunteya
- sambhavanti mūrtayaḥ yāḥ
- tāsāṁ mahad yonir brahma
- ahaṁ bīja-pradaḥ pitā
- (BG 14.4)
Kṛṣṇa says like this, "I am their father." To whom? Sarva-yoniṣu: "In all species of life, beginning from Brahmā down to the ant." So if you kill your brother, say, who is not important, will your father approve, "Oh, you have done nice. You are very nice son. You are earning millions of dollars, and this man is useless, this, this boy. So you have killed. It is very nice"? No, father will never tolerate. To the father, the useless son and the earning son, both are equal in affection.
So therefore it is the duty of the elderly son, those who are advanced, not to kill the insufficient son, but to give them education of Kṛṣṇa consciousness. This is the duty. It is not that "Because this living entity is useless, then kill him." So you can kill, but you will be implicated. Therefore Yamarāja is there. Yamarāja's business is to see how much sinful this living entity is, and he is offered a similar body. Karmaṇā daiva-netreṇa (SB 3.31.1). You will be judged after your death, every one of us. Of course, if he takes Kṛṣṇa consciousness seriously, then the path is automatic. Automatically you go back to home, back to Godhead. There is no question of judgment. Judgment is for the criminals, the rascals, who are not Kṛṣṇa conscious. But if you become Kṛṣṇa conscious, even if you cannot finish the job in this life, even if you fall, still, you will be given another chance of human body, to begin where you ended, to begin from the point where you fell down. That is...
Therefore svalpam apy asya dharmasya trāyate mahato bhayāt. If you have taken to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, try to execute it very seriously, means to follow the rules and regulation and chant Hare Kṛṣṇa. That's all. Five things: no illicit sex, no gambling, no meat-eating... We don't prohibit sex, but illicit sex is most sinful. Most sinful. Unfortunately, they are so rascals, one sex to another, another sex to another, another sex... That is māyā's illusion, influence. But if you stick to Kṛṣṇa... Mām eva ye prapadyante māyām etāṁ taranti te (BG 7.14). If you catch up Kṛṣṇa's lotus feet very tightly, then you will not fall down. But if you make a show of so-called brahmacārī, so-called gṛhastha or so-called sannyāsī, then you will fall down. We are experiencing that. Then you must fall down. Kṛṣṇa will not tolerate a defaulter, a pseudo devotee. Māyā is very strong. Immediately capture him: "Come on. Why you are here? Why you are in this Society? Get out." That is Yamarāja's duty. But if you remain in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, Yamarāja will not touch you. Your death is stopped from the point where you begin Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Your death is stopped. Nobody is prepared to die. That is a fact. You may say, I may say, "No, I am not afraid of death." That is another rascaldom. Everyone is afraid of death, and nobody wants to die. That is a fact. But if you are serious about that thing, that "I shall stop my process of death, dying process," then it is Kṛṣṇa consciousness.
Therefore it is advised, aho nṛ-loke pīyeta hari-līlāmṛtaṁ vacaḥ: "O the human society, you have got this body. Just go on drinking the nectarine of kṛṣṇa-kathā." It is advised here. Aho nṛ-loke. Especially it has been advised in the nṛ-loke, the human society. It is not addressed to the dog-loke or cat-loke. They cannot. They have no capacity. Therefore it has been: nṛ-loke. Nāyaṁ deho deha-bhājāṁ nṛ-loke. Another verse, in the Fifth Canto: nāyaṁ deho deha-bhājāṁ nṛ-loke kaṣṭān kāmān arhate viḍ-bhujāṁ ye (SB 5.5.1). These are the Bhāgavata. There is no comparison. There is no literature throughout the universe like Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. There is no comparison. There is no competition. Every word is for the good of the human society. Every word, each and every word. Therefore we stress so much in the book distribution. Somehow or other, if the book goes in one's hand, he will be benefited. At least he will see, "Oh, they have taken so much price. Let me see what is there." If he reads one śloka, his life will be success. If he reads one śloka, one word. This is such nice things. Therefore we are stressing so much, "Please distribute book, distribute book, distribute book." A greater mṛdaṅga. We are chanting, playing our mṛdaṅga. It is heard within this room or little more. But this mṛdaṅga will go home to home, country to country, community to community, this mṛdaṅga.
So it is advised that nṛ-loke. Nṛ-loke means the human form of body, in the human society. We don't discard that "This is American society" or "This is European society," "This is Indian society..." No, all human being. All human being. It doesn't matter what he is. All human being. What to speak of civilized men, even uncivilized, anārya. They are also described in the Bhāgavatam. Kirāta-hūṇāndhra-pulinda-pulkaśā ābhīra-śumbhā yavanāḥ khasādayaḥ (SB 2.4.18). These names are there. Kirāta. Kirāta means the black, the Africans. They are called kirāta. Kirāta-hūṇa āndhra. Hūṇa, the nation or the community on the North Pole, above Russian, German, they are called hūṇa. There are so many we do not know. Khasādayaḥ, the Mongolians. Khasādayaḥ means who does not grow sufficiently mustaches and beard, this Mongolian group. Kirāta-hūṇāndhra-pulinda-pulkaśā ābhīra-śumbhā yavanāḥ khasādayaḥ. Yavana, the mlecchas, yavanas, means those who are Muhammadans and others. So they are also included. Nṛ-loke. Because it is nṛ-loka—every human being. Superficially, externally, there may be this nation is better than that nation. That is fact. The Āryans and non-Āryans, there are division: civilized, noncivilized; educated, noneducated; cultured, noncultured; black, white; this and that. There are... Externally these divisions. But that distinction is of the body.
But spirit soul is not this body. He is spirit. That quality is one. There is no such distinction, "This is better," "This is lower," "This is black," "This is white," "This is civilized." In the spirit soul platform, everyone is one, one. Samaḥ sarveṣu bhūteṣu. Samaḥ. Samatā. Samatā means equality. Where? Brahma-bhūtaḥ prasannātmā (BG 18.54). When one is self-realized, ahaṁ brahmāsmi... "I am not this body. I am not Christian, I am not Hindu, I am not black, I am not white, I am not fat, I am not thin. I am Brahman," brahmāsmi. That is called Brahman. "I am spirit soul, part and parcel of God. My only business is to serve God, because I am part and parcel of God." Just like I have given several times: the part and parcel of my body is this finger. What is the duty? To serve the whole body. I ask the finger, "Come here immediately. Do this." "Yes." Natural. If I am part and parcel of God, then my only duty is to serve God. That's all. I have no other duty.
So that is brahma-bhūtaḥ. It is very simple thing. Not that by becoming brahma-bhūtaḥ, one gets four legs and one dozen hands. No. The hand is there, the leg is there, the mouth is there, everything is there. When it is purified, that "These hands, legs, are meant for serving Kṛṣṇa," that is called brahma-bhūtaḥ. That is brahma-bhūtaḥ. Not that brahma-bhūtaḥ means I become nirākāra, no form. The Māyāvādī philosophers, they think like that, something different. Because this is not Brahman. This is asat. Brahma satyaṁ jagan mithyā: "This world is false. Therefore Brahman realization means that something opposite must be there. In the māyā, everything is variety. So Brahman must be without variety." This is also material conception, because he is thinking like that. But my thinking, if I am in māyā, so whatever I am thinking, that is also māyā. But these rascals, they do not understand that. They do not understand that. I am thinking that "Brahman must be opposite of this variety. Therefore Brahman must be impersonal." But what is their conclusion? The conclusion he is thinking. He is thinking like that. But real Brahman, Para-brahman, Kṛṣṇa, is not impersonal. He does not say that "I am impersonal." But these rascals say that "God is impersonal." So this kind of thinking by the person who is in māyā, that is also māyā. Therefore they are called Māyāvādī. Māyāvādī means all their philosophy is also māyā. It has no meaning. Therefore they are Māyāvādī. They are handling something in the māyā. Therefore they are called Māyāvādī.
So here it is said that nṛ-loke. Nṛ-loke, in this human form of body... Here advising, aho nṛ-loke pīyeta hari-līlāmṛtaṁ vacaḥ. This is advised. Those who are born in the human society, they should join this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement where simply hari-līlāmṛtaṁ vacaḥ. There is no other business. What is our business here? Constantly, twenty-four hours, we are engaged in hari-līlāmṛtaṁ vacaḥ. That's all. And so long you are engaged in hari-līlāmṛtaṁ vacaḥ, there is no question of death. There is no question of death. Then if you say, "We are seeing that devotees are dying," "Yes, but death has been stopped." "Then still, why he is dying?" "He is not dying. He is going back to home, back to Godhead." Tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti mām eti kaunteya (BG 4.9). Tyaktvā deham. He has given up this body, but he is not going to accept anymore a body like this. Then? Mām eva: "He is coming to Me." What is that mām eva? Yad gatvā na nivartante tad dhāma paramaṁ mama (BG 15.6). If you go somehow or other to Kṛṣṇa, you will never come back.
So mṛtyu, death, is stopped as soon as you take Kṛṣṇa consciousness very seriously, immediately, from that moment, as soon as you are initiated. You promise before the spiritual master, "Yes, I am initiated, I shall act like this," and if you follow, then your death is stopped from that point. No more death. No more death. Simply an official business, just like you sleep and again you awake, similarly, a devotee's death is like that. It is like sleeping, and next moment in the spiritual kingdom, immediately. Immediately. When he will rise, he will see that "I am with Kṛṣṇa. I am with Kṛṣṇa."
Devotees: Jaya Prabhupāda!
Prabhupāda: This is the fact. So don't fall down. Don't be childish, that "Yes, I have promised before spiritual master, before Kṛṣṇa, before fire. All right, that's all right. Let me break." No, don't do that. Don't do that. Don't lose this opportunity. You are now on the point of deathlessness, but if you again commit... Bhajann apakvo 'tha patet tato yadi (SB 1.5.17). There is chance. If your execution of devotional service is not going perfectly, so there is chance of falldown.
So devotional service so nice that even if you fall down, there is not very great loss. Great loss means you get human body, not an animal body. That is stated in the Bhag... Yoga-bhraṣṭo 'sanjāyate. Śucīnāṁ śrīmatāṁ gehe yoga-bhraṣṭaḥ (BG 6.41). One who has fallen down from the bhakti-yoga, where does he go? Śucīnāṁ śrīmatāṁ gehe: in the house of very rich man and in the house of nice Vaiṣṇava brāhmaṇa. This is the opportunity. This is first-class opportunity. If you take your birth in the house of Vaiṣṇava brāhmaṇa, just like these children are taking birth, father and mother Vaiṣṇava... They are very fortunate. They are not ordinary children. Otherwise they would not have gotten this chance of chanting and dancing before Deity and Vaiṣṇava. They are not ordinary children. The parent must take care, very good care, that they may not fall down. They have got the chance. Now train them to complete this Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That is the duty of father and mother. "Now this child has come under my care." If both the father and mother think like that... Not contracepting. Oh, rascaldom. "Oh, here is a child who has taken shelter of me as mother, who has taken shelter of me as father. Oh, it is my duty to train him in such a way that no more birth, no more death." Therefore Bhāgavata says, pitā na sa syāt..., na mocayed yaḥ samupeta-mṛtyum (SB 5.5.18): "One should not become mother, one should not become father, if he cannot release his children from the clutches of death." And how one can be saved from the clutches of death? This is the process, hari-līlāmṛtaṁ vacaḥ. If he is trained up... Therefore we have got this school from the Dallas. From the beginning, hari-līlāmṛtaṁ vacaḥ. They are being trained up in hari-līlāmṛtaṁ vacaḥ.
So once one becomes situated in hari-līlāmṛtaṁ vacaḥ, that means he has stopped his process of death. So this dying again of this body... Of course, this body is material. It must make a show that this material body... But he is a spiritual body. He is going back to home, back to Godhead. There is no doubt about it. Therefore Yamarāja's duty... Yamarāja is Vaiṣṇava. He wants to see that you do not die again. He wants to see that you continue your deathlessness. Now you are engaged in kṛṣṇa-kathāmṛtaṁ vacaḥ. So that is the point of... Just like a diseased man. A diseased man, as soon as goes to the physician and he gives the right medicine, and he takes it, that means his diseaselessness condition has already begun. It will take little time. So in the meantime, in that treatment time, diseaselessness condition, if you make another infection, that is your fault. Otherwise, deathlessness begins from the day of initiation. Ādau gurvāśrayam. As soon as you take shelter of a bona fide spiritual master, your point of deathlessness begins immediately. Immediately. And if you continue the advice and instruction of the spiritual master, or the śāstra, then you become deathless. No more death. And Yamarāja wants to see that actually you are continuing your deathlessness process. This is... Kṛṣṇa consciousness is so nice. Therefore it is advised.
Now if somebody argue that "Here is... A devotee is also dying.A devotee is also dying. How can I say that it is deathlessness?" No, he does not know. Devotee is not dying. There is very good example. Just like a cat: he catches the rat and he catches his cub also. But these two kinds of catching is different. When the cat catches a rat, that rat means his "chi-chi-chi" means dying, actually dying. And the cub, he is feeling very comfortable: "meow, meow, meow." Because the same cat, catching process is the same, but the feeling is different. So a devotee seemingly dying, he is not dying. He is going back to Kṛṣṇa. He is very pleased, "Now my labor is finished. I am going to Kṛṣṇa." That is his feeling. And others, they are crying, "Oh, this is my estate. This is my family. This is my, this is my, this is my... I am leaving. I do not want to leave it. What will happen to that?" He is crying. That is death. And this is not death.
So it appears like death, but it is actually not death. Just like the electric fan, if you make the switch off, it has stopped running, but if you say, "Still running," that is not running; that is a show of running. Actually, the running is stopped. Similarly, as soon as you surrender to God through His representative, your death is stopped, unless you make it nullified by accepting anything which is against the bhakti principle. Otherwise your deathlessness is guaranteed. That is stated here. Na kaścin mriyate tāvad yāvad āsta ihāntakaḥ. If you simply know that "Yamarāja is there. He is supervising that I may not fall down," then you will not die. You will not die. It is not impractical. It is practical. Try to perceive the truth that since you have begun Kṛṣṇa consciousness, to become Kṛṣṇa conscious, your death has been stopped. But don't fall down and again capture death. That is the instruction.
Thank you very much.
Devotees: Jaya Śrīla Prabhupāda. (end)