660328 - Lecture BG 02.46-47 - New York
Prabhupāda: (leads kīrtana) (prema-dhvani) Thank you very much.
The saṅkīrtana just now we have performed, it is vibration of the transcendental sound. This will help us in clearing the dust which we have accumulated on the surface of our mind. The whole thing is misunderstanding. We, as pure soul, pure consciousness, naturally we are aloof from material contamination. But due to our long association with this material atmosphere, we have accumulated a great, thick layer of dust on the mind. So as soon as the dust is cleared off, then we can see ourself, what we are.
So we are discussing for the last few days on the constitutional position of ourself, myself, yourself—the soul, pure soul. Now, we have discussed that this pure soul is distinct from this material body. And we can understand this constitution of the soul by the presence of consciousness. The Lord says, Kṛṣṇa says that, avināśi tu tad viddhi yena sarvam idaṁ tatam (BG 2.17).
You can understand what you are. You are present all over your body. You are present all over your body. Wherever you can try by pinching your body, you will feel some pain, this, this part of this body or this part of this body. And this pain feeling will be stopped as soon as the consciousness is taken away from this body. Dead body, where there is no consciousness, the dead body does not feel even he is chopped up by some chopper, because the consciousness is gone. Therefore, it is not very difficult to understand that "I am the consciousness. I am not this material body." We have discussed all this point.
Now, so far scriptures are concerned, there are different scriptures all over the world in the civilized society, but Bhagavad-gītā, the Lord says that "The essence of all scripture is to understand my constitutional position." That's all. All the rituals . . . we should not be stuck up to the rituals or to the formulas of the . . . of course, in the preliminary stages we require to stick to the formulas of religious scripture. But we must know that the whole idea is targeted to understand my real position. That is the whole idea of all scripture.
In the Bhagavad-gītā it has been very nicely described, yāvān artha udapāne tāvān samplutodake.
- yāvān artha udapāne
- sarvataḥ samplutodake
- tāvān sarveṣu vedeṣu
- brāhmaṇasya vijānataḥ
- (BG 2.46)
Brāhmaṇasya vijānataḥ. One who knows the constitution of the soul, he is called brāhmaṇa. Because the soul is Brahman: soul is not matter. So one who knows the constitution of the soul, he is called brahmin. We have already discussed this matter, that brahmin does not mean a particular class or born in a particular country. A brahmin means who knows the position of the soul, or the constitution of the soul. He is brahmin.
Just like a person who is conversant with medical science, he is called medical man or a doctor. It doesn't matter whether he is born in India or born in America or whether he is black or white. It doesn't matter. One must have the qualification of a medical man, and he is called a doctor. Similarly, Bhagavad-gītā also accepts the brahminical culture. The brahminical culture. Brahminical culture means the social position in which everyone is assisted to elevate himself to the highest position of understanding the position and the constitution of the soul. That should be the aim of human society.
Human society is not animal society. The difference between animal society and human society is that a human being, whoever he may be, he can, if he is taught, if he is given training, if he is educated, he can understand his real position, that he is not this body but he is pure consciousness: he is spirit soul. But in the animal society, however a big animal may be, either he may be a lion or a tiger or an elephant or any other big animal, he cannot be taught about the constitution of the soul, although he has got the soul also. A lower animal, he has also got the consciousness. He has got also a soul. But unfortunately he hasn't got the facility, the bodily facility or developed intelligence, by which he can understand that what he is.
So that is the difference between animal and human being. So in the human society, if they do not care to understand this factual position of his soul or consciousness, then he is no better than the animal. Yes. That is the Vedic version.
- āhāra-nidrā-bhaya-maithunaṁ ca
- sāmānyam etat paśubhir narāṇām
- dharmo hi teṣām adhiko viśeṣo
- dharmeṇa hīnaḥ paśubhiḥ samānaḥ
- (Hitopadeśa 25)
The āhāra . . . āhāra means eating, nidrā means sleeping, and bhaya, bhaya means fearing, and maithuna, maithuna means sexual intercourse. So these four things, four principles of life, there is in the animal kingdom and in the human kingdom. But the human kingdom, the human body is distinct from the animal body in the respect . . . in this respect, that in human society there is religion. Religion. Generally we understand as religion. Religion means a culture of the spirit soul. It may be in different way understood in different countries, but the whole idea is to understand the spirit soul.
So dharmeṇa hīnaḥ paśubhiḥ samānaḥ. If the human society is not very eager to understand the real position of the soul, or consciousness, then he is no better than the animals. That is the version of the Vedic, and actually it is so. Our developed consciousness, our developed life, should be used, should be utilized in this human form of life to understand "What I am." The whole trouble, whole trouble is, the whole trouble of the human society is because they have forgotten the constitutional position of his self.
So we have already discussed all these points in previous meetings, but because today we have got some new friends, ladies and gentlemen, therefore I have given you a summary of the last, I mean to say, meetings. Now, today we have to consider that simply theoretically knowing that "I am consciousness" will not do, simply theoretical knowledge, because the position of consciousness is activity. Activity. Now, my body is active. I am speaking to you: you are hearing to me. We . . . congregationally we chanted saṅkīrtana just now. Why? Because the consciousness is present. If there was no consciousness either in you or I, then I could not chant, neither you could hear, or neither you could chant, neither I could hear. So therefore the position of the consciousness is activity. Activity.
The philosophy . . . there are many philosophies in the world. Particularly the philosophy which is called atheism, they think that consciousness is produced by material combination, and when consciousness is gone, that means the material composition could not tolerate or could not produce anything. They have got a different theory like that. But so far we are concerned, Vedic literature or Śrīmad Bhagavad-gītā does not, I mean to say, accept this theory.
Consciousness is eternal. Consciousness is eternal, and consciousness is . . . consciousness is the symptom of the soul. Soul is eternal. When the soul takes shelter in the matter, then the matter develops, not that that combination of matter, you can produce soul. That is not possible. If that would have been possible, then there are many great scientist and many scientific laboratory, especially in your Western countries, in Europe and America, but nobody could produce a single living being in the laboratory, scientific laboratory. That is not possible. You could produce great, complicated machinery, but you cannot produce the machine driver. The machine can be produced, but machine driver cannot be produced. And without machine driver, all machines are useless. All machines are useless.
A child may see in the street oh, how a nice motorcar is passing with so much speed. He is struck with wonder that, "Without any horse, how the motorcar is going on?" I mean, those who have no experience how machine works. Just like in India . . . of course, I heard this story from my professor when I was a student of logic in my I.A. class. And this example was given by my professor, Dr. Purnachandra Sena, I still remember, that when first railway was started from Howrah to Burdwan, about sixty-four miles, during British period, say about two hundred years before, now the cultivators on both sides of the line, they were seeing the railway engine going with wonder: "Oh!"
So somebody . . . this story was cited in connection with chapter of hypothesis. In logic there is a chapter of hypothesis. So somebody suggested that, "There must be horse within the engine. Otherwise it cannot go." Because they have got experience that without horse, nothing can be pulled on. It is horseless, so the hypothesis was that, "There must be horses within the engine. Otherwise it cannot go." So similarly, the machine, the machine, however wonderful it may be, so if not horse, at least if there is no driver it cannot move. It cannot move.
The whole world is moving by combination of matter and spirit. That's all. The whole material world. Just like my body is moving due to the presence of my self as soul, similarly—it is very easy to understand—the whole cosmic manifestation is working due to the presence of the Supreme Soul, whom we call God or the Supersoul or Paramātmā or Bhagavān. Whatever name you may call, that doesn't matter. But you must understand that as without presence of the soul, the body cannot move, similarly, the whole materialistic world, cosmic atmosphere, is moving due to the presence of the Supersoul.
Now, in Bhagavad-gītā you will find that we individual souls are parts and parcels of the Supersoul. So we have got eternal relation with the Supreme Soul. We have got eternal relation with the Supreme Soul qualitatively, qualitatively, not quantitatively. We are one with the Supreme qualitatively. Just like a drop of ocean water qualitatively is equal to the mass water in the ocean. The mass water in the ocean is salty, and the drop of ocean water, if you taste it, you'll find it is also salty. So the chemical composition of the water, either in drop or in vast mass, is the same. But the drop of ocean water is never equal to the vast, I mean to . . . mass water in the ocean. That is our position. We are in quality . . . just God is, similarly, we are also in quality the same, chemically or constitutionally or qualitatively. But God's power and my power is different. Just like the mass water in the ocean, it can play a havoc. But a drop of water, that . . . it is not possible by the drop of the water.
Similarly, that is the difference between ourself and God. We are minute particles, minute particles, just like the sun and the sun rays. The sunshine, the sun rays, they are also combination of molecules of some shining material, material. Shining material . . . so that sunshine is not different from the sun, but at the same time, sunshine is not the sun. This is called simultaneously one and different.
This philosophy was, I mean to say, expounded by Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, acintya-bhedābheda. Acintya-bhedābheda, "simultaneously one and different." Now, in order to keep our position intact, that is to . . . that theoretically we understand or we have understood that "I am not this body, but I am consciousness, pure soul," that is our theoretical . . . not theoretical, but it is practical. Anyone can understand. Any sane man can understand that "I am not this body: I am the soul."
Now, to keep myself fixed up in that conviction, we require to work for it. Otherwise, as I was explaining to you, just like a child, a boy, he is, I mean to say, very much addicted to play. But if you want to give him . . . if you want to stop his mischievous activities and if you want to stop him, then you must give him some good engagement. If you simply stop the child that "Don't play," by threatening or by some other way, you can stop him artificially for some time. But as soon as he gets opportunity he will again play. So you must engage him with some good task so that he may have attraction and he may be engaged in that good task so that he may not spoil or waste his time by playing or by mischievous activity.
Similarly, consciousness is active. So to be in the consciousness plane, if you do not give engagement to the consciousness, then naturally consciousness will act through this body. We have to act in such a way that . . . at the present moment I am within this body. So we have to make utilization of a bad bargain. I don't require this body. Somehow or other, I am now entrapped or encaged in this material body, and all my sufferings are due to this body. Therefore the whole aim of human life is to get away from this material body and to be situated in the spiritual life.
Now, in order to achieve that end of life, we have to begin a professional spiritual life. Professional spiritual life. That professional spiritual life is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā:
- karmaṇy evādhikāras te
- mā phaleṣu kadācana
- mā karma-phala-hetur bhūr
- mā te saṅgo 'stv akarmaṇi
- (BG 2.47)
Karma. Karma means work. Karma means work. One should not think that "Because I am not this body, so I shall cease to work." No. You cannot cease to work. If you cease to work, then idle brain will be a devil's workshop. No. We have to work. So therefore the Lord says: "The technique of acting on the spiritual platform is that you have your right to act. You have your right to act according to your position." But, karmaṇy evādhikāras te mā phaleṣu kadācana: "But you should not desire to enjoy the fruit of your activity." That is the technique. You should not desire to enjoy the fruit of activity.
Then, if I want to enjoy the fruit of my activity, then what it will be? Suppose I am a businessman: I have made a profit of ten million dollars in this year. So do you mean to say that I shall not enjoy this huge amount of money? I shall throw it away? Oh, yes. The Bhagavad-gītā says that, mā phaleṣu kadācana: "You cannot take the fruitive result of your work." Then if I do it, then what it will be? Now, He said, mā karma-phala-hetur bhūḥ: "Don't be cause of your activities. Then you will be bound by the interaction of your activity." "Don't be cause of your activity. Then you shall be bound up by the effects of your activity. You don't be cause: then effect will not touch you." Mā karma-phala-hetur bhūr mā te saṅgo 'stv akarmaṇi (BG 2.47).
Then if you say: "Better I shall not do anything," no, that also will not be permitted. You cannot stop acting: at the same time, you cannot take the fruitive result of your activities. And if you think that, "Oh, I am not going to . . ." Just like in India one business friend, he was selling my books. He was telling, "We are not going to make any huge business this year, because if we do business, the profit is more, the whole thing will be taken by government by income tax. So we are stopping to work, to have more business." This is the position. Because our mind is so inclined that if I cannot enjoy the fruit of my activities, then I am disinclined.
Perhaps you know, there is a proverb in English that "Proprietorship turns sand into gold." A person working on his own account, oh, he can turn sand into gold, but a person working for others' account, oh, that is not possible. He will be slow. He will be slow, because the purpose is that "Why shall I work so hard? It will be enjoyed . . ." Just like our business friend was speaking to me that, "Why shall we work so hard and make huge profit that the whole thing will be taken by the government?" But here the Lord says that, "You cannot stop your work, neither you can enjoy the activities, the fruit of your activities." That is the work on spiritual plane.
Now, we have to understand this very cautiously. The first thing is that, He says, karmaṇy evādhikāras te. Everybody has got his particular position, and according to his position, there is particular work also. That is the system all over the world. Now, according Bhagavad-gītā, the, by the division . . . not according to Bhagavad-gītā: according to Vedic conception of life, the human society is divided into four divisions according to the quality of work. In the Bhagavad-gītā also, we find the cātur-varṇyaṁ mayā sṛṣṭaṁ guṇa-karma-vibhāgaśaḥ (BG 4.13).
The caste system, cātur-varṇyam . . . perhaps you have heard about Indian caste system. That caste system is natural. Of course, in India it has become a hereditary thing, but this caste system is all over the universe, even amongst the animal society. That division of caste is made according to quality and work. Quality and work. Now that caste system, that quality and work, is divided according to the . . . quality means quality of the material modes of nature.
There are three qualities by which the material world is moving: the quality of goodness, the quality of passion and the quality of ignorance. Those who are situated on the quality of goodness, they are called brahmins. And their symptoms are also mentioned in the Bhagavad-gītā. I shall give you a statement of those systems. Now, those who are situated on the quality of goodness, they are called brahmins. That quality of goodness is current all over the universe. So anyone situated in that quality, he is brahmin. And those who are situated in the quality of passion, they are called kṣatriyas. And those who are situated in the quality of . . . mixed quality of ignorance and passion, they are called vaiśyas, or the mercantile community. And those who are situated in the quality of ignorance, they are called śūdras, or the laborer class.
So in this way there are different classes and different castes all over the world. You may call it caste or division of labor or division of the society. These four divisions are there all over the universe: the intelligent class, the administrative class, the productive class and the laborer class.
So the intelligent class, they have got separate department of duty. The administrative class, they have also got separate department of duty. Similarly, the mercantile class, they have got separate activity. And the laborer class, they have only one activity—to serve others. That's all. Because they cannot do anything independently, therefore they have to offer the service to the higher class, to the administrative class or to the mercantile class or the intelligent class, and take some payment for his livelihood.
So these division, these divisions . . . so the Lord says, Lord Kṛṣṇa says that, "According to your quality, you have to do your duty." You just . . . just you can . . . hereditary or by your own choice, you can have your own duty. But there is no question of that one should be idle. No. If you are intelligent class, then you have to take to intelligent quality of work, just like you must become a scientist, you must become politician—not politician: philosopher—you must be a religionist or so many intelligent class of work. So you must engage in that way if you are actually intelligent, if you belong to the intelligent class.
Now, if you are administrative class, then you must take to the politics or election, be elected the mayor, be elected president or something like that, and work in that way. And if you belong to the mercantile community, then you must do business and produce agricultural grains and distribute them. That is your business.
In the Bhagavad-gītā you will find that the mercantile class . . . who are mercantile class? Kṛṣi-go-rakṣya-vāṇijyaṁ vaiśya-karma svabhāva-jam (BG 18.44). Vaiśya means the mercantile community. They are meant for giving protection to the animals, and produce grain and distribute and make trade on them. That's all. Because formerly there was no industry—people generally depended on agricultural work—therefore the mercantile community, they used to produce food grains and distribute them, and protection of cow was their duty. As the king was entrusted to protect the life of the citizens, similarly, the vaiśya class, or the mercantile class, they were entrusted to protect the life of cow. Why particularly cow is protected? Because milk is very essential food for the human society, therefore cow protection is the duty of the human society. That is the conception of Vedic literature.
Now, the Lord says that karmaṇy adhikāras te: "Now, according to your quality and according to your position, you have to work. You cannot stop working. But you should not . . . you should not enjoy the fruit." That is . . . in other way this is a conception of spiritual communism. Spiritual communism. Now, now just like in Communist country the center is the state. Nobody is private proprietor, but everyone is a member of the state, and whatever he earns, it goes to the state. That is . . . so far I know, this is the communistic idea. Now, here, if I am not entitled to take the result of my labor or my activity, then whom it is going to? Who shall enjoy it?
So that is the conception of spiritual life. That means your earnings, your earnings should be distributed to the central point. It should be through the central point. The central point is God. Instead of making central point to any limited things, if you make the central point God, and if you work on His behalf, and if you think that it should be enjoyed by the Supreme Lord, then your spiritual life is fixed up. Then your spiritual life is fixed up. Because your . . . you are not discouraged to produce, but the production, or the entire result of your work, the fruitive result, should go to somebody. And who is that somebody? If you are . . . if you are not going to enjoy, then who is going to enjoy? That means this should be enjoyed by everyone through the central point of God.
Just like the state realizes taxes from you. That taxes is distributed. Taxes . . . tax is distributed throughout the state. So as you deposit tax to the state and it is distributed throughout the whole state, similarly, if your fruitive result is offered to the Supreme Lord, then your fruitive result is distributed to everyone. The central point. That is the spiritual state.
Now, how to do it? If you say that, "Where is God? Where is God, whom to offer my fruitive results?" that point is answered by the devotional service. Devotional service. Now, if you engage your money for the service of the Lord, then that means you are offering to the Lord, for the service of the Lord. Now, what is the service? What is the service of the Lord? The service of the Lord . . . now, so far Bhagavad-gītā is concerned, the Lord says that:
- yadā yadā hi dharmasya
- glānir bhavati bhārata
- abhyutthānam adharmasya
- tadātmānaṁ sṛjāmy aham
- (BG 4.7)
"Whenever there is any flaw in the standard process of religiosity, at that time I take My incarnation and I come on this earth." So this is a fact. This is a fact.
The whole material nature is working under the superintendence of the Supreme Lord. Now, whenever there is any discrepancy, just to rectify, sometimes punishment is given or sometimes the Lord comes Himself, or sometimes He sends His representative, or sometimes He leaves some books of knowledge. In this way, the whole process from God's side is to put ourself always on the right path. That is the process going on.
Now, just like in your Christian religion, Lord Jesus Christ, he claimed himself that he is coming from God as son of God to reclaim you to back to Godhead, back to home. That is the mission. Every . . . every reformer or every great religious leader or God Himself, He comes on this earth to reclaim these conditioned soul to back to Godhead, back to the kingdom of Godhead. That is the whole idea of incarnation.
Now, at the present moment . . . not at the present moment: practically always, the people, by material contact they forget their relation, their relationship with the Supreme Lord, their constitutional position. Now this, whatever we earn, if not the whole thing, but if at least some portion of our income we engage in the service of the Lord for propagating the teaching of God consciousness, that is engaging our fruitive activities, the result of our fruitive activities, in the service of the Lord.
And another thing: if we want to prosecute our spiritual life, then there are certain formulas. Certain formulas mean that we should not take more than what we need. We should not take more than what we need. We should not neglect also that, the portion which we actually need, but at the same time we should not accumulate more than what we need.
There are six formulas. There are six formulas for spiritual life, in favor and in disfavor. There are six formulas which, if we follow those six formula, then our spiritual life will be developed gradually. And there are six formulas which we follow, then our spiritual life will be degraded. So both ways, there are six formulas. I may present those six formulas. First of all the favorable six formulas are that:
- utsāhān dhairyāt niścayād
- sato vṛtteḥ saṅga-tyāgāt
- ṣaḍbhir bhaktiḥ prasidhyati
- (Upadeśāmṛta 3)
Utsāhāt. Utsāhāt means you must be very much enthusiastic that, "In this life, in this human form of life, I must complete my spiritual consciousness, or God consciousness, so that in the next life I may not have this material body. That is called utsāhāt. Utsāhāt means very much enthusiastic. Just like a man is very much enthusiastic that, "In this life I must accumulate ten millions dollars in the bank," and he does work with great enthusiasm: similarly, we must have also similar enthusiasm that, "In this very life, in this very human form of life, I must make my spiritual life perfect, so that after leaving this body I may not come again to this material world." That is called utsāhā, enthusiasm.
Utsāhād dhairyāt. Dhairya means patience. Patience. There may be so many obstacles in prosecuting our spiritual life, but we should patiently go forward. We shall not be discertained. Utsāhād dhairyāt niścayāt. And with confidence, with confidence that, "Because I am following . . ." Just like Bhagavad-gītā is a standard book. If not Bhagavad-gītā, take Bible or take Koran, whatever you like. Now, there are some formulas for prosecuting spiritual life. So one must have confidence that "Because I am following the standard method, so my spiritual life will really be perfected." We must have this confidence. And that is a fact. Utsāhāt, first, enthusiasm: second, patience: and then third, with confidence, niścayāt.
Dhairyāt, utsāhād dhairyāt niścayāt tat-tat-karma-pravartanāt. Simply enthusiasm will not do. The formulas which are prescribed there we must follow. We must actually apply in our life. Utsāhād dhairyāt niścayāt tat-tat-karma-pravartanāt sato vṛtteḥ. And we must be . . . our vṛtti, our profession, or occupation, must be very pure. Must be very pure. Impure activities cannot lead me to spiritual emancipation. You will find in Bhagavad-gītā that the God is described, paraṁ brahma paraṁ dhāma pavitraṁ paramaṁ bhavān (BG 10.12).
Pavitram means the purest. God is the purest. So unless we are purest, we cannot approach God. Therefore it is stated that sato vṛtteḥ. Our occupation, our vṛtti, should be very clear, pious. Sato vṛtteḥ and sādhu-saṅga (CC Madhya 22.83).
Last, last word is very important, that all these things can be executed if we make our association with similar persons. Similar persons. Those who are on the path of realizing spiritual perfection, we must make our association with such association. We must be associated with such society so that we can make our . . . this is . . . just like we are holding these classes. This is called sat-saṅga. We are not discussing politics, we are not discussing something for sense enjoyment. We are discussing from Bhagavad-gītā about the constitution of the soul, about the what is God, what is our relation with God. This is called sato vṛtti, sat-saṅga. Sat-saṅga means association with good persons who are engaged, if not cent percent, at least engaged certain portion of his life for spiritual realization. So these six things are required for making progress in spiritual life.
Similarly, there are six other things also, which will degrade us from the spiritual life. And what are those?
- atyāhāraḥ prayāsaś ca
- prajalpo niyamāgrahaḥ
- laulyaṁ jana-saṅgaś ca
- ṣaḍbhir bhaktir praṇaśyati
- (Upadeśāmṛta 2)
Praṇaśyati means "It is lost." "The spiritual path is lost by these six principles." And what are these? Now, atyāhāra. Atyāhāra means to eat more than what you need or to accumulate more than what you need. Āhāra means eating, and āhāra means accumulation. So, of course, any householder, he requires some deposit in the bank for emergency. That is, of course, allowed for householders. But just for us, we are sannyāsī: we are renounced order of . . . we haven't got to accumulate any money. You see? That is the system of Indian philosophy. But those who are householder, family men, they may have some deposit for emergency. Otherwise, those who are renounced order, those who are brahmacārī, for them to keep money separately for his maintenance or for accumulating bank balance is not allowed. Atyāhāra.
Similarly, āhāra, eating. You have to eat only things which can maintain your body properly. Now, say, for human being. Say, human being, the eating things are grains, vegetables, fruits, milk and so many things which are given by God for human eating. So we should be satisfied with those things which are meant for humanity. We should not simply . . . for the pleasure of the tongue we should not eat anything. That is called atyāhāra.
So atyāhāra and then prayāsa. Prayāsa means to labor very hard to achieve a thing. Life should be conducted in such a way that our necessities of life may come not with great effort: easily, easily. We should not encumber ourself, our life, living policy, in an encumbered way. Then our spiritual progress will be hampered. The modern society has practically encumbered the whole human activities, and therefore they have no time for spiritual culture. You see? But the conception of Vedic civilization was that people used to be satisfied on agricultural produce, and for three months working during rainy season. So they get some agriculture produce and they used to eat the whole year. So nine months they were free to advance in spiritual culture, and only three months they used to work for accumulating their foodstuff. You see?
So atyāhāraḥ prayāsaś ca prajalpa (Upadeśāmṛta 2). Prajalpa means talking nonsense. We assemble and go on talking for nothing, neither for this life, neither for that life. We should not talk . . . suppose if we are gaining something materially, we may go on talking. Or if you are gaining some spiritually, we may talk. But if there is no gain, simply wasting time, that should not be done.
Atyāhāraḥ prayāsaś ca prajalpo niyamāgrahaḥ. Niyamāgraha means simply to stick up to the rituals. Just like people . . . in every religion there are some rituals that . . . in our Hindu religion the people are advised to observe some ceremonies. In every religion the same system is there. They go to temple, you go to church, and the Muhammadans, they go to mosque, and similarly, there are different systems. But if one is simply sticking up to the system without seeing, "How much progress I am making in my life?" then that is waste of time. That is called niyamāgraha, simply observing the rules.
And niyamāgraha also means that you should not neglect also the rules. You should not neglect the rules and regulation: at the same time you should not stick up to the rules and regulation. So atyāhāraḥ prayāsaś ca prajalpo niyamāgrahaḥ laulyam (Upadeśāmṛta 2). Laulyam means to be . . . to be greedy. To be greedy. You should not be greedy, that "I want so much. I want so much. I want so much." No, not like that.
Atyāhāraḥ prayāsaś ca prajalpo niyamāgrahaḥ, and laulyam, and jana-saṅgaś ca. Jana-saṅgaś ca means the persons who are not interested in spiritual matter, we should not associate with them. This should be . . . these are the, these six things, which retrograde the progress of spiritual life, and the other six things which I previously, just moment, I described, they will help us in our progressive life to the spiritual path.
In this way, that work should not be stopped . . . work . . . according to our position, according to our quality, work must be executed. But the fruit of the result we should not accept. If we accept the fruit, then I must be responsible for the reaction, reaction of the work. Now, this question has come to be discussed by Lord Kṛṣṇa to Arjuna because Arjuna was a military man, he belonged to the administrative class, and this Bhagavad-gītā was described in the battlefield. So he was hesitating from his duty, "I shall not fight. I shall not fight, because by killing my kinsmen, by killing my spiritual master, by killing my teacher, killing my grandfather, I will be sinful." That was his conclusion.
Now, Kṛṣṇa says that, "If you think in that way, that you shall be, I mean to say, enjoying, enjoying the reaction. Then, of course, you'll not be working in the spiritual field. You don't think in that way, because this war is a duty and because I want that you should fight." It is the order from the authority. Kṛṣṇa is accepted as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. "Therefore you should fight."
So fighting for the cause of the Supreme, that will not affect you. That will not affect you. Just like you can take an example that fighting for the country and killing the enemies, that is taken into good account, but fighting for one's personal cause, fighting or killing one man for personal cause, that man is hanged by the laws of the state. Similarly, fighting is also not bad if it is done for the supreme cause. Anything which is done for the supreme cause, that is transcendental. That is above, I mean to say, our mundane calculation. So Śrī Kṛṣṇa says that "You should not stop working, but you have to work cautiously for the supreme cause. That is the way of working on the spiritual platform."
Thank you very much. Now, if there is any question, you can ask me. (end)