740528 - Lecture SB 01.02.04 - Rome

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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

740528SB-ROME - May 28, 1974 - 22:49 Minutes

Prabhupāda: Oṁ namo bhagavate vā...

Nitāi: Oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya. Oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya. Oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya. (Prabhupāda and devotees repeat) (leads chanting of verse, etc.)

nārāyaṇaṁ namaskṛtya
naraṁ caiva narottamam
devīṁ sarasvatīṁ vyāsaṁ
tato jayam udīrayet
(SB 1.2.4)

(break) (02:54)

Translation: "Before reciting this Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, which is our very means of conquest, I offer my respectful obeisances unto the Personality of Godhead Nārāyaṇa, unto Nara-nārāyaṇa Ṛṣi, the supermost human being, unto mother Sarasvatī, the goddess of learning, and unto Śrīla Vyāsadeva, the author."

Prabhupāda: This is the paramparā system. As you get knowledge, step by step... Kṛṣṇa is the original spiritual master, and then from Kṛṣṇa, Lord Brahmā learned the Vedic knowledge. Tene brahma hṛdā ādi-kavaye (SB 1.1.1). In the Bhāgavata it is said that "Wherefrom Brahmā got his knowledge?" Because whenever we want to get knowledge, we must approach a superior person to get knowledge. Tad-vijñānārthaṁ sa gurum eva abhigacchet (MU 1.2.12). Guru means superior. So who was the superior person when Brahmā got knowledge? Because there was no other creature. He is the first creature. Therefore it is said, "The superior person was Kṛṣṇa, but He was not present." We see, Kṛṣṇa was present before Arjuna, but nobody was present before Brahmā. Therefore it is said, tene brahma hṛdā ādi-kavaye. Hṛdā: "through the heart." Because Kṛṣṇa is situated in everyone's heart. Actually, He is the spiritual master, caitya-guru. So in order to help us, He comes out as physical spiritual master. And therefore sākṣād-dharitvena sama... Spiritual master is representative of Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa sends some sincere devotee to act on His behalf, and therefore He is spiritual master.

So this is the paramparā system. As you receive knowledge step by step... Nārāyaṇa..., Kṛṣṇa, instructed Vyāsadeva. Brahmā, Brahmā instructed Nārada. Nārada instructed Vyāsadeva. Vyāsadeva instructed his disciple Madhvācārya. In this way we have to go through also, in the same way. First of all, offer respect to the spiritual master, as he has done to Śukadeva Gosvāmī. Taṁ vyāsa-sūnum upayāmi guruṁ munīnām (SB 1.2.3). So then his spiritual master, then his spiritual master, then his spiritual master. Just like you have got the pictures: first of all, your spiritual master, then his spiritual master, then his spiritual master, his spiritual master—ultimately Kṛṣṇa. This is the process. Don't try to approach Kṛṣṇa directly, jump over. That is useless. As you receive knowledge through the steps, paramparā system, similarly, we should approach Kṛṣṇa through these step.

nārāyaṇaṁ namaskṛtya
naraṁ caiva narottamam
devīṁ sarasvatīṁ vyāsaṁ
tato jayam udīrayet
(SB 1.2.4)

In this way you become glorified.

(reading from the purport:) "All the Vedic literatures and the Purāṇas are meant for conquering the darkest region." Tamo 'ndham. We have already discussed. Atititīrṣatām. Saṁsāriṇāṁ karuṇayāha... Saṁsāriṇāṁ karuṇayāha purāṇa-guhyam. Adhyātma-dīpam atititīrṣatāṁ tamo 'ndham (SB 1.2.3). Atititīrṣatām. That is human civilization, how to get out of this darkness of ignorance. Not the dogs and cats jumping in very jubilant, "I am a big dog. Let me jump over." This is not civilization. That is animal civilization. They are jumping naked, we are jumping dressed, that's all. That is the difference. Otherwise, where is the difference? So long we have got this bodily concept of life, "Let me enjoy this body, senses..." Body means the senses. Indriyāṇi parāṇy āhuḥ (BG 3.42). So, so long one is in the darkness, his predominant feature of enjoyment is the senses. That's all. "Let me enjoy. I have got this tongue. Let me whole day go to the restaurant, cut throat of this animal, that animal, and enjoy, and let him go to hell. Let me enjoy." This is jihvā-lobha.

Tā'ra madhye jihvā ati lobhamoy sudurmati tā'ke jetā kaṭhina saṁsāre. Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura says, "Amongst the senses, the most powerful sense is the tongue." Most powerful sense. You see? They are smoking, chain smoker, going on, going on. What is this? There is some sensation. And if we smoke cigarette or drink, it is simply the tongue. The tongue is dictating, "Do this, do that. Take this, take coffee, take tea, smoke, take flesh, take chicken, take this, take this, take..." That means that out of the all senses, the tongue is the most formidable. Therefore Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura says, tā'ra madhye jihvā ati lobhamoy sudurmati tā'ke jetā kaṭhina saṁsāre. It is very difficult to conquer over the tongue. And if you can conquer over the tongue, then you can conquer over the belly, and then you can conquer over the genital. The straight line, one after another. Tā'ra madhye jihvā ati.

So you know the story, that one dog was crossing over a small rivulet, and he saw the picture of another dog in the water. And actually, there was no dog. He was carrying some food in his mouth, and he saw another dog within the water. So he thought, "Let me take his foodstuff from the mouth," and as he opened the mouth—he wanted to take the other dog's foodstuff—so whatever he had, gone. You see? This is dog philosophy, "Take away." Take other's meal; he loses his own. This is called illusion, māyā. You did not read this, Aesop's Fable story? It is very instructive story. This is dog's philosophy. This is dog's philosophy. All these so-called empire... This Roman Empire was expanded. The British Empire was expanded. Now they have lost everything. Finished. The dog's business was finished.

So this kind of expansion, unnecessarily... Therefore our philosophy is, "Be satisfied whatever God has given you." Tena tyaktena bhuñjīthā mā gṛdhaḥ kasya svid dhanam (ISO 1). You be satisfied whatever is given to you by God, allotted to you. Don't try to encroach upon others' property. This is civilization. But man is transgressing this law, nature. They are not satisfied to become localized. They want to expand. If you want to expand, but expand something which will be beneficial to the human society. Just like we are expanding Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That is required to be expanded. Because the cats' and dog civilization will be controlled. But to expand the cats' and dog civilization to compete with another dog is the same story, Aesop's Fable story, to capture the other dog and take his foodstuff, and then lose everything. These are very instructive.

So the real business is saṁsāriṇām, saṁsāriṇām, adhyātma-dīpam atititīrṣatām. One should come to senses, that "I am eternal. I hear from Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, that na hanyate śarīre, na hanyate hanyamāne śarīre (BG 2.20), I am not finished after my body's finished. Then, if I am not finished, where do I go? Where I remain?" This is intelligence. But they have no information that the eternal soul, na hanyate hanyamāne śarīre (BG 2.20). They are thinking, "All of a sudden my this body has developed, and we have got good senses. Let us enjoy the senses. There is no life. It is finished." Big, big professor in Russia, that Professor Kotovsky, he told me, "Swāmījī, after finishing this body, there is anything... Everything is finished." That is the basic principle of modern civilization, that "There is no life after death, and whatever senses we have got, let us enjoy it." Then bhasmī-bhūtasya dehasya...

That, it is not a new thing. This atheistic philosophy was there long, long ago. They have not discovered anything new. It is already there. In India, the atheistic philosophy was already there. Cārvāka Muni, he used to say, "Enjoy life, senses. Gratify your senses some way or other." "No, I have no sufficient money." Ṛṇam kṛtvā: "Take. Beg, borrow, steal. Bring money." There are three methods of getting money. If one hasn't got money, then beg. Just like we are begging, professional beggar, sannyāsī. They beg, borrow. And those who are not beggar, they borrow from friend, or steal, by hook and crook. So that is Cārvāka theory. "Bring money some way or other. Beg, borrow or steal." Ṛṇaṁ kṛtvā. Ṛṇaṁ kṛtvā, the very word is used. "If you have no money, then take loan from your friends." Ṛṇaṁ kṛtvā ghṛtaṁ pibet yāvaj jīvet sukhaṁ jīvet. "Now, I have to pay back. How can I take loan? If I don't pay, then I shall remain debtor, and I will have to pay in my next life." "No, no, no. Don't bother about next life." Bhasmī-bhūtasya dehasya kutaḥ punar āgamano bhavet (Cārvāka Muni): "When your body, when it is finished, it will be burnt into ashes. Then the ashes will be lost. No more you are coming."

So this is going on. Because people have no knowledge about the next life, they are not interested with the spiritual education. That is the difficulty. They are not at all interested. Why people do not come here? They think that "These people will say that there is life after death, and if you do not do nicely, you will have to suffer. All this nonsense we have to hear, utopian." They do not... They are not interested. They are so dull. The facts... Kṛṣṇa is giving example: dehino 'smin yathā dehe kaumāram... (BG 2.13). As you are changing your body... We have changed, every one of us, we have changed body. I was a baby. I was a child. I was a boy. I was young man. Now I have got a different body. Where have those bodies gone? They have no brain to think. I had all these bodies—that's a fact. And they are not existing now, that's a fact. And still I say, "There is no other body after death." What is the reason? What is the logic? How simple logic is given by... Not ordinary person—Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, says that "As you have changed so many bodies, passed through so many bodies..." Every... Medical science says every minute we are changing body. That's a fact.

Just like the other day, Dr. P. Bannerjee came. That girl I saw changing from ten, twelve years ago. In 1955 I saw that girl, 1955. How many years ago?

Dhanañjaya: Nineteen, twenty years.

Prabhupāda: So that girl has grown up now nineteen years. At that time she was on the lap of her mother. So I said, "Oh, your daughter has grown up so much." She has changed so many bodies. But that body which I saw in 1955, that does not exist. Where is the illogical? That body is not existing, but the girl is there, and mother, father, "Yes, yes, she is my daughter, that daughter which you saw so little." The body has changed so many times.

So similarly, when I shall give up this body, I must have another body. And Kṛṣṇa says, tathā dehāntara-prāptiḥ (BG 2.13). This is called saṁsāra. The saṁsāra means repetition of different bodies. That is called saṁsāra. Here, saṁsāriṇāṁ karuṇayā. Therefore this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is to be compassionate to these rascals who are in the cycle of changing body after body. It is a great movement. Everyone, all over the world, they are thinking there is no life after death. But that is not the fact. The fact is as you have changed so many bodies in this life, you have to change this body; you have to accept another body. It is a great dangerous position. That they do not think. If I accept another body of a tree, then I will have to stand in one place for thousands of years. This is the science. Now I cannot stay for five minutes in the Bhagavad-gītā class, but if I am given the body by nature... Prakṛteḥ kriyamāṇāni. You are under the grip of nature. You cannot say... You cannot stop your death. When nature asks you, "Now you must die," your science cannot stop this. So you are under the grip of the nature. Prakṛteḥ kriyamāṇāni guṇaiḥ karmāṇi sarvaśaḥ. So if the nature gives you, now you take this body of banyan tree and stand here for five thousand years. How can you stop it? Will your scientific knowledge can stop it? Is it possible? Then what is your science? If you are under the grip of the material nature,

prakṛteḥ kriyamāṇāni
guṇaiḥ karmāṇi sarvaśaḥ
kartāham iti manyate
(BG 3.27)

Although he is pulled by the ear by the material nature, he is thinking he is free, he is freedom. They are struggling for freedom. What is this nonsense freedom? You are under the grip of the material nature. Where is your freedom? Now you have got..., nature has given you this human form of body. Next you may get another body, next you may... That is under the..., completely under the control of material nature.

So they do not know. They do not know. Completely in darkness. Tamo 'ndham. Therefore those who are eager to cross over this ocean of ignorance, for them, these instructions are there. Nārāyaṇaṁ namaskṛtya naraṁ caiva narottamam. You have to go in the paramparā system, submissing, tapasya, jñāna. Bahavo jñāna-tapasā pūtā mad-bhāvam āgatāḥ (BG 4.10). So by jñāna, by knowledge, by tapasya, you have to make progress. This is Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement.

Thank you very much.

Devotees: Jaya Śrīla... (break) (end)