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660725 - Lecture BG 04.11-12 - New York

His Divine Grace
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

660725BG.NY - July 25, 1966


ye yathā māṁ prapadyante
tāṁs tathaiva bhajāmy aham
mama vartmānuvartante
manuṣyāḥ pārtha sarvaśaḥ
(BG 4.11)

This śloka, this verse, we discussed last Friday evening, and I tried to explain the supreme leadership of the Supreme Lord. By nature we are destined to follow a leadership. Nobody is independent. Even in the animal society, the animals, they have also got a group, and there is leader of the group. Perhaps you know it. So in every group . . . we are trying to make some group according to the similarity of thoughts and propensities. There are association, you know, various association: mercantile association, bankers' association, lawyers' association, and there is a leader. That is the nature's way.

Now, the supreme leader is Śrī Kṛṣṇa. That we do not know. Supreme leader, the leadership is accepted, but we do not know that the supreme leader is the Supreme Lord, or Kṛṣṇa. So that is informed in the Vedic literature, and in the Bhagavad-gītā also, the same thing is confirmed that, ye yathā māṁ prapadyante: "Now, everyone is under My leadership. Everyone. There is no exception." Especially He mentions the manuṣya. Manuṣya means the human being.

The human being especially mentioned here, because amongst all the human beings in this lower status of our existence, the human being is considered the highest perfectional stage of living condition. And especially human being has the prerogative to understand the supreme leadership of Śrī Kṛṣṇa. The animals cannot understand it or the persons who are in the animal nature.

Just like you will find in the Seventh Chapter of Bhagavad-gītā, the Lord says:

na māṁ duṣkṛtino mūḍhāḥ
prapadyante narādhamāḥ
āsuraṁ bhāvam āśritāḥ
(BG 7.15)

"Those who are always engaged in mischievous activities, those who are fools, those who are lowest of the mankind and those whose knowledge has been deluded by the external energy, they do not make their surrender unto the Supreme Lord." But there are other persons, who are virtuous. They are considered that ārto jijñāsur arthārthī jñānī ca bharatarṣabha (BG 7.16).

There are other persons who are distressed and in need of some wealth or inquisitive or really research worker in the field of understanding what is the Absolute Truth. And this morning we were discussing in the morning class that the person who are research scholar in the matter of understanding the nature of Kṛṣṇa, transcendental nature of Kṛṣṇa, he is called jñānī, or philosopher, and he is accepted, with bhakti, with devotional service, he is accepted as special for the attention of the Supreme Lord.

Now, everyone . . . therefore everyone is following the leadership or the representative of the leadership. Now you will find in the Bhagavad-gītā, when there is some specific qualification of a person, just like political leader or some spiritual leader . . . leader there must be. So suppose a political leader or religious leader is there, and thousands of people are following him. So that is confirmed in the Bhagavad-gītā, that they are invested with certain power of Śrī Kṛṣṇa. Yad yad vibhūtimat sattvaṁ mama tejo 'ṁśa-sambhavam (BG 10.41).

So everyone is following directly or indirectly the supreme leadership of Kṛṣṇa. And the perfectional stage of accepting that leadership is when we accept Śrī Kṛṣṇa as our direct leader.

We are going to that path gradually, going to that path gradually, but in the middle we are hampered, because there is want of sufficient knowledge. When sufficient knowledge is there . . . you'll find in the Bhagavad-gītā, bahūnāṁ janmanām ante jñānavān māṁ prapadyate (BG 7.19). "After many, many births, when one is developed in his real consciousness, he can understand." What? What he understand? Vāsudevaḥ sarvam iti sa mahātmā su-durlabhaḥ: "That Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme. He is all in all. So I have to surrender unto Him."

That is the perfection of knowledge. This stage one has to reach. Never mind whether he is following a principle of philosophical research, whether he is following the yogic principle or whether he is following philanthropic work or political leadership or . . . so many things are going on, but the whole thing is targeted toward Kṛṣṇa. How it is targeted? That is explained. I shall try to explain.

Now, the whole material world is working under two energies: the lower energy and the higher energy. And the both of the energies, they have got different dimensions. Just like in this atomic age, you know, the material energy ends in the atomic portion: atom, paramāṇu. Similarly, this is . . . this material energy is called lower energy, and there is another energy, which is called spiritual energy. So both the energies, they are emanating from the Supreme Lord. In the Vedānta-sūtra also it is confirmed, janmādy asya yataḥ (SB 1.1.1): "All energies, they are coming, emanating, from the Supreme." In the Bhagavad-gītā also you will find the same thing confirmed. Ahaṁ sarvasya prabhavo mattaḥ sarvaṁ pravartate (BG 10.8). "I am the fountainhead," Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa says. "I am the fountainhead of everything."

So now to understand how everything is He, so two energies are working in this world in our experience. One is superior energy, or the higher energy, and the other is the inferior energy. The inferior energy is matter, and the superior or the higher energy is the spirit soul.

So as we find . . . you have got now . . . we have no experience. Scientific advancement of knowledge, so far we have in this material world, that is bounded within the area of material energy. They have not succeeded in finding out the spiritual energy. Otherwise they would have given life to the dead man. That has not been possible. Suppose a man is dead. What is that death? Death means separation of two energies: the material energy and the spiritual energy. That is death. The supreme spiritual energy and the atomic part of it, as it is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā, mamaivāṁśo jīva-bhūtaḥ (BG 15.7).

Just you have experience in this atomic age the minute quantity of atomic material existence, similarly, there is spiritual atomic existence.

Now, this spiritual atomic existence . . . the other day I explained and several times that atom is also described in the Padma-Purāṇa, Vedic literature. And what is the form of that spiritual energy, I mean to say, atom, spiritual atom? It is ten-thousandth part of the upper portion of the hair. You have got experience up to the upper portion of the hair. It is just a little point. Now divide it into ten thousand part, and that one part is yourself, spiritual atom. This is our position. And that spiritual energy is so powerful that we, from that one ten-thousandth part of the upper portion of the hair . . .

It is not manufactured. So far what I am speaking to you, it is from authentic śāstras. The original verse is that:

śatadhā kalpitasya ca
jīva-bhāgaḥ sa vijñeyaḥ
sa anantyāya kalpate
(Śvetāśvatara Upaniṣad 5.9)

The exact verse is, in Sanskrit, that jīva, the living entities, they are ananta. Ananta means there is no limit how many there are. Ananta, unlimited. Unlimited. And a small. Just like in the material world also, you will find unlimited atomic existence, similarly, in the spiritual also, there are unlimited spiritual atoms. And one of the atom is myself and yourself or the ant or the elephant. Everyone is containing that atomic portion of spiritual energy. And from that atomic spiritual energy develops this material body—from that spiritual.

The matter cannot develop. Matter cannot develop. That you have got experience. A dead body does not develop. A living body develops. A child, when it comes out of the mother's womb, if the child is dead, oh, there is no further development, however you can keep the child in a very antiseptic way preserved. No. There is no development. Therefore it is concluded that the supreme spirit, Kṛṣṇa, from Him everything has come out. Everything has come out. Any stage you take, that is Kṛṣṇa.

And whenever I surrender . . . because my position is to surrender. I am spiritual, that atom, however big body I can develop. I can develop the body like an elephant, but the elephant is conducted under the direction of a man. You know? Such a big animal is controlled by a small boy of human being. So everyone is under control. We cannot deny that. So we have to . . . we are under control of different dimension of that spiritual energy covered by material energy. But the real control is from Kṛṣṇa. That we have to understand, either we follow this path or that path.

Now, suppose there are impersonalist who believe in the ultimate, I mean to say, merging into the supreme effulgence, brahma-jyoti. And what is that brahma-jyoti? Brahma-jyoti is just the atomic spiritual combination of atomic spiritual portions. That is brahma-jyoti. Just like the sun ray. Those who are scientists, those who know what is the sun ray.

The sun ray is a small molecular, glazing atoms, the sun ray. You have got experience of sun ray, but what is the sun ray? It is not homogeneous. It is heterogeneous. When you can analyze the sun ray, you'll find small particles of molecules. Similarly, brahma-jyoti is also spiritual atoms combined together. Just like the sun rays, different material molecules combined together, similarly, brahma-jyoti is also like that.

Now, as in the sun rays there are different planets—they are also generated from the sun ray—similarly, from the brahma-jyoti there are different planets. But those planets we cannot see here. That is beyond this sky. So in that planets, and the spiritual planets, there are different forms of God, Kṛṣṇa. That is described in the Brahma-saṁhitā:

advaitam acyutam anādim ananta-rūpam
ādyaṁ purāṇa-puruṣaṁ nava-yauvanaṁ ca
vedeṣu durlabham adurlabham ātma-bhaktau
govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi
(Bs 5.33)

Just like Kṛṣṇa has expanded Himself with these molecular atomic portions of these living entities, similarly, He has got many other expansions as Viṣṇu. So that is the nice subject matter.

(aside) Raymond, you can get there light.

So in every way this is a subject matter for studying, scrutinizingly studying, Kṛṣṇa science. Kṛṣṇa science is a great science. Therefore Kṛṣṇa has said just in the beginning of this chapter, janma karma me divyaṁ yo jānāti tattvataḥ. Yo vetti tattvataḥ. Anyone who understands Kṛṣṇa scientifically, what He is, how He is working, how His energies are acting . . . these things are to be known. And one who simply knows this science—what happens? Oh, tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti mām eti kaunteya (BG 4.9).

Simply by knowing this science he becomes liberated soul. He becomes liberated soul. And what is the position of liberated soul? Liberated soul, tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti mām eti. That person who is liberated simply by knowing the transcendental nature of Kṛṣṇa, he is liberated, and he at once transferred to the spiritual sky into that planet which I am describing, Vaikuṇṭha planet. There are innumerable Vaikuṇṭha planets, and each and every planet, Kṛṣṇa is there in different Nārāyaṇa form.

So this is the opportunity in the human life to understand this. We are submitting to different energies of Kṛṣṇa. But if we directly submit ourself to Kṛṣṇa, what He, Kṛṣṇa, what He is, that is not very difficult to know, because Kṛṣṇa comes in this material world and displays His real nature—anugrahāya manuṣyāṇām, in Bhāgavata—just to inform the human society that, "If you have no knowledge of Kṛṣṇa, just see. I have incarnated. How I am doing, you can see. You can have."

Just like something extraordinary happening in India, and if there is some photograph, cinematograph, and you see in the picture by a scope, cinema, you see the actually, what is happening. But Kṛṣṇa's pastime is not like that. Just like originally, the incidence which is happening in India, you have got a photograph. You see in cinema. This cinema picture is a shadow of that actual picture. But when Kṛṣṇa comes, because He is absolute, the same picture which is in the spiritual world, the same picture is represented here. There is no difference.

advaitam acyutam anādim ananta-rūpam
ādyaṁ purāṇa-puruṣaṁ nava-yauvanaṁ ca
(Bs 5.33)

Kṛṣṇa is described as nava-yauvana. Some of you must have seen the picture of Kṛṣṇa. He is always just like a boy of twenty years old, although He is the ādi-puruṣa. Ādi-puruṣa means He is the original person of all emanations. He is the oldest. Advaitam acyutam anādim, ādyaṁ purāṇa-pu . . . purāṇa-puruṣam means the oldest. Purāṇa means old. Purāṇa-puruṣam—still, nava-yauvanaṁ ca, just like a young man of twenty years old, full energy, full youthfulness. This is the science of Kṛṣṇa.

So simply by knowing this science of Kṛṣṇa, if we can get liberation from these material miseries of life, why should we not try for this? Let us try for Kṛṣṇa consciousness. It is a very nice subject matter and very easy. We are just trying to propagate this Kṛṣṇa consciousness. We don't ask you to have some troublesome or laborsome gymnastic. No. You simply come and hear. And this hearing, it is followed by nice music and singing.

And beginning with music, ending with music, everyone will like it. And we have no means . . . of course, whatever means I have got, I am distributing little fruit. But the process is—Lord Caitanya, who introduced this process—after this termination of this performance of chanting and reciting, distribution of prasādam, nice, palatable dishes for eating.

So Bhagavad-gītā says, su-sukham: "This is the process is very palatable and very pleasurable and very easy." And still, you get Kṛṣṇa. Although it is the easiest and most pleasurable and happy mood, still you get the Supreme. And you don't require any qualification. It doesn't require that you have to become a great, learned scholar. No. Simply by the gift of Kṛṣṇa you have got these two ears. If you simply give aural reception to this transcendental word, that is sufficient. It does not require any extraneous education, that you have to pass M.A. examination or D.A.C. or Ph.D. or something like that. No. So why should you not take advantage?

Satāṁ prasaṅgān mama vīrya-saṁvidaḥ. Kṛṣṇa says in Bhāgavata: satāṁ prasaṅgān mama vīrya-saṁvido, bhavanti hṛt-karṇa-rasāyanāḥ kathāḥ (SB 3.25.25).

If we actually take advantage of association of realized person, and if we hear from them, then the result is that it becomes very pleasing to the heart and the ear. Satāṁ prasaṅgān . . . (indistinct) . . . asatām. One must be realized soul in describing the science of Kṛṣṇa. Then the result will be that the audience will feel that it is very nice to hear, and it is appealing to the heart. Satāṁ prasaṅgān mama vīrya-saṁvido bhavanti hṛt-karṇa (SB 3.25.25). Hṛt means heart; karṇa means ear. Hṛt-karṇa-rasāyanāḥ, very pleasing.

Now, we have received this news, very pleasing. Now next duty? Taj-joṣaṇāt. Now, if you little try to assimilate it. And what is that assimilation? Smaraṇam. Simply by thinking, "Oh, this has been spoken." Try to argue whether it is true or not. So you have to think over. Satāṁ prasaṅgān, taj-joṣaṇād āśv apavarga-vartmani. And if you do that . . . suppose you hear something of the Bhagavad-gītā, and it appeals to you, or even does not appeal to you. Just try to think over: "What Bhagavad-gītā says? How Swāmījī has discussed this matter?"

Apply your arguments. Apply your logic. Don't take it as a sentiment or as in a blind faith. You have got reason; you have got argument; you have got sense. Apply it and try to understand it. Neither it is bogus. It is scientific. Then you will feel . . . taj-joṣaṇād āśv apavarga-vartmani śraddhā bhaktir ratir anukramiṣyati. You will gradually develop your attachment for hearing it, and devotional service will be invoked in your heart, and then, gradually, you will make progress.

But one thing. It is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā, once you begin, even one percent you can realize, that will never be lost. That will remain a permanent settlement. Now suppose if you are trying for B.A. examination, or you have passed your B.A. examination. Now, with the end of this body, that, your qualification as graduate of Columbia University or any university, is finished. Now your life begins in another body, and you have to acquire knowledge again to become qualified a graduate.

But this knowledge is not like that. Because it is spiritual knowledge, absolute knowledge, it goes with you, your spirit. That you will find, explanation. And another chance is that one who tries to assimilate this knowledge, even if he is not, I mean to . . . perfect, so there is no harm. Because whatever he has learned, that remains an asset, and you get another chance of human body to begin from where you have ended in this life. Yoga-bhraṣṭaḥ. Śucīnāṁ śrīmatāṁ gehe yoga-bhraṣṭo 'bhijāyate (BG 6.41).

You'll find in the Bhagavad-gītā. Śucīnām and śrīmatām. Śucīnām means purified family. Just like in India we have got the ideal purified family: a brāhmin. Of course, nowadays, due to material advance of civilization, everything is polluted, but according to . . . still there are some families very purified. If you go to their house, at once you will feel, "Oh, it is a place fully purified." So śucīnām. Śucīnām means in the family of such purified brāhmin. And śrīmatām. Śrīmatām means in the family of rich men.

Why these two chances are given? Because in the family of a pure cultural family, you get the chance of regenerating your lost spiritual consciousness which was unfinished in your last life. That you get chance. And in the rich man family you get chance because you haven't got to bother yourself how to maintain your body and soul together. Rich men get the opportunity that they haven't got to think over much about the maintenance of the body and soul together. Ordinary men, they have to seek how to earn the bread. Problem of bread is there. And for a rich man there is no such problem. He can advance in culture. He has the opportunity.

But unfortunately, a rich man's sons are misguided. They get some money without earning and they spend like anything for sense gratification. You see? But he should know, "Oh, I have got this opportunity by the grace of Kṛṣṇa. Now let me peacefully advance myself in the science of Kṛṣṇa." This opportunity is offered by Kṛṣṇa, but we misuse.

Still, but we should not wait for the chance of another birth. We should take the opportunity in this birth. Just like Kṛṣṇa prescribes here that simply by knowing the transcendental nature of Kṛṣṇa and His transcendental activities, one can get liberated. Why don't you do that? Why should you wait for another birth, either in the rich man's family or in the pure family of a brāhmin? Because it is not exactly sure that because a person is born in the family of a pure brāhmin, he is elevating spiritually. No. Sometimes we see that he is degrading because he is misusing or by bad association of the parents did not train him.

So we should not miss this opportunity of human life, and follow this instruction that janma karma me divyaṁ yo vetti tattvataḥ (BG 4.9). Anyone who simply understands the transcendental nature of Kṛṣṇa, he becomes a liberated person. This opportunity we should take. And ye yathā māṁ prapadyante tāṁs tathaiva bhajāmy aham (BG 4.11).

And we are already under the control of some leadership. That is a fact. Why should we not take exactly, directly, the leadership of Kṛṣṇa? This is the process. If you have got any doubt that, "Why should I take the leadership of Kṛṣṇa?" the answer is there in the Bhagavad-gītā. This is the real study of Bhagavad-gītā.

In the Bhagavad-gītā the Lord says that, "Arjuna, you are My dear friend. Therefore, although I have explained all the different branches of, I mean to say, spiritual cultivation, but the most confidential thing just I am telling you because you are My very dear friend." Sarva-dharmān parityajya'' (BG 18.66); "Just give up everything, and just be surrendered unto Me. I shall give you all protection." So instead of accepting so many infidel or imperfect leadership, let us accept the leadership of Kṛṣṇa and make our life perfect. That is the whole philosophy. Now, in the next śloka the Lord says:

kāṅkṣantaḥ karmaṇāṁ siddhiṁ
yajanta iha devatāḥ
kṣipraṁ hi mānuṣe loke
siddhir bhavati karma-jā
(BG 4.12)

Now, I accept some particular class of leader because I belong to that status of ideas. So therefore you know that in the Vedic literature there are names of many demigods. Sometimes the Hindus are criticized that, "Hindus have got many gods." But they are not, I mean to . . . the Supreme God. If somebody is a serious student of Upaniṣad, they will find that the demigods described, they are all, I mean to say, servants of the Supreme Lord, Kṛṣṇa.

But here it is said, kāṅkṣantaḥ karmaṇāṁ siddhim. Sometimes we want something immediately by worshiping these demigod. Just like it is mentioned that if it wants . . . if one aims to . . . wants to be free from diseases, he has to worship the sun-god. If one has to become very beautiful or he wants a beautiful wife, then he has to worship Umā. Similarly, there are different gods' names in the Vedic literatures, and they become successful. That is not unreal. By worshiping those different demigods for particular purpose, they become successful. That is a fact.

But in another place you will find in the Bhagavad-gītā that it is said, I mean to say, kāmais tais tair hṛta-jñānāḥ yajanty anya-devatāḥ (BG 7.20). Kāmais tais tair hṛta-jñānāḥ: "Those who are misguided by material desires, they take the shelter of other demigods." One goes to the worship of demigods because one is persuaded for a particular purpose. Just like one who wants to be very healthy man or to be free from all diseases, he worships the sun-god. Or one who wants to be . . . to have a beautiful wife or becomes himself a very beautiful human, he worships the devī Umā.

But one who is convinced, one who is convinced that, "I am not this body . . ." This is the thing, "I am not this body." The material wants means bodily demands. Then he does not go to all these demigods. He takes at once shelter of the Supreme Lord. Jñānavān. Jñānavān, who has understood the problems of life. Jñānavān. Jñāna means who has understood the spiritual nature of the living being, he is called jñānavān. So jñānavān. Bahūnāṁ janmanām ante jñānavān māṁ prapadyate (BG 7.19).

One who has become really learned, even after many, many births, and knows that "I am not this body, I am spirit. My nature, my advancement, my happiness is depending on the advancement of my spiritual life," such a person only can take shelter of Kṛṣṇa, and perfectly.

Others, of course, as it is said, that those who are distressed or those who are in need of some wealth, they also goes to worship Kṛṣṇa, but for some temporary relief. But the benefit is that even such persons go to Kṛṣṇa worship for some temporary relief, but the benefit is that because he has gone to Kṛṣṇa, therefore, at the ultimate end, he will be devoid of all these material desires and will absolutely take shelter of Kṛṣṇa. There are many instances of that type, of that type.

Just like Dhruva Mahārāja. Dhruva Mahārāja, he went to worship Kṛṣṇa just to have the property of his father. That's a long story. The property of his father . . . the father has two wives, and Dhruva Mahārāja mother, Dhruva Mahārāja's mother was neglected by the king. So he was going to be bereft of the father's property. So he wanted father's property. He went to in the forest to worship Kṛṣṇa just to ask Him, "Give me my father's property." There was a desire. But, you will be glad to understand, when Dhruva Mahārāja, after finishing his tapasya, or penance, when he saw Kṛṣṇa, when Kṛṣṇa appeared before him as Viṣṇu: "My dear boy, now whatever you want you can ask. I shall give you," now, he says, "Oh, my Lord, I don't want anything anymore."

Nice . . . there is a verse, svāmin kṛtārtho 'smi varaṁ na yāce (CC Madhya 22.42): "My dear Lord, I am so satisfied that I have no desire to ask You." Why? Now, sthānābhilāṣi tapasi sthito 'ham: "I came to accept this severe type of penance just to acquire the land of my father, or just desiring the possession of a few acres of land or any . . . but I have seen You. Who are You?" Deva-munīndra-guhyam; "Who is never seen even by the great demigods or great sages or great men by many years' penances. Therefore my profit is that I came to search out some particles of glass, broken glass, and I have got the diamonds. So what I have got to ask You? I am now satisfied."

So result is that even one is in need of money or he is in distress, as we'll find in the Seventh Chapter that, catur-vidhā bhajante māṁ sukṛtino 'rjuna (BG 7.16), so even if you have got some desire within yourself, so the Bhagavad-gītā says, in spite of having that desire, you can worship Kṛṣṇa and ask, so that in future your desires will be desireless. You will not ask anything. Because that is pure devotion. So we have to wait.

Just like jñānī. Jñānī, he does not desire anything to take in exchange, but he simply wants to know Kṛṣṇa, "What is my relation with Kṛṣṇa?" This is called jñānī. He has no other desire. Therefore, eko bhaktiḥ viśiṣyate. Jñānī has been eulogized. So even I am not jñānī, even I am a needy person, if I take to Kṛṣṇa and ask Him, that process is also recommended, because ultimately, when I shall be purified, I shall know my real nature.

Then I shall say like Dhruva Mahārāja, svāmin kṛtārtho 'smi varaṁ na yāce: "My dear Lord, I am fully satisfied. I don't want anything." Because spiritual consciousness, Kṛṣṇa consciousness, is so bright, so illuminated and so valuable that in the presence of such consciousness you will directly deny to have any valuable things of this material world.

So we have to attain to that state. Now, that is the real aim of life, and Lord Kṛṣṇa personally is teaching in the Bhagavad-gītā. Why should we not take advantage of this? We should not refuse. If we refuse . . . we can refuse, because we are individual souls with independence. If you like, you can refuse. But we should not refuse. Here Kṛṣṇa says that "Those who does not come to My leadership, but he goes indirectly to other leaders . . ."

We worship leadership—why? Because we want something from that leadership. Just like in our India during the, I mean the, Independence movement, so many people took part in the Congress movement, and later on, they became all ministers and high official, although they had no position in India's past life.

So it is possible that if we worship other demigods, we can get some temporary relief from our distress. But if you take to Kṛṣṇa, then the relief is permanent, and tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti mām eti, we can give up this body and go directly to the spiritual kingdom to be associated with Kṛṣṇa.

Now, here Kṛṣṇa says, kāṅkṣantaḥ karmaṇāṁ siddhiṁ yajanta iha: "People are deluded for temporary relief, and therefore they go to worship demigods." They get some immediate relief. That is their profit. But kṣipraṁ . . . kṣipraṁ hi mānuṣe loke siddhir bhavati karma-jā. If you want some temporary relief, then you can worship this or that. But if you want really the ultimate relief . . . and that is the goal of human life, ultimate. Everyone is trying to get out of miseries. The whole struggle, either in the material field or in the spiritual field, the whole struggle is to get out of some miseries.

So perfect man or a very intelligent man, he should try to have the highest benefit of this life, and that is surrendering unto Kṛṣṇa. That is surrendering unto Kṛṣṇa. If we do that, then we are both materially and spiritually benefited. You will find in the later śloka that teṣāṁ satata-yuktānāṁ bhajatāṁ prīti-pūrvakam (BG 1.10). The exact word, I forget now. It is said that "Those who are engaged in Kṛṣṇa consciousness," Kṛṣṇa says: "I supply them all that he needs. He hasn't got to ask anybody." He, Kṛṣṇa knows.

Just like the father knows what is the necessity of his child who is depending fully on the father. The father may neglect of the grown-up children who is looking after his own business, but the child who is completely dependent on father and mother, the father-mother takes care.

Similarly, Bhagavad-gītā, Kṛṣṇa says, yoga-kṣemaṁ vahāmy aham (BG 9.22). Anyone who is fully in Kṛṣṇa consciousness without any consideration, then everything is taken care by Kṛṣṇa. This assurance is given. But if you don't believe in that assurance, if you don't believe in Kṛṣṇa, that is a different thing. But so far Bhagavad-gītā is concerned, if we become fully Kṛṣṇa consciousness, then our ultimate solution of all problems will be solved. That is a fact.

Now if you have got any question, you can ask.

(break) . . . atomic, atom consistency of matter, have you got experience?

Guest (1): Not experience.

Prabhupāda: No, at least you have heard that there is atom.

Guest (1): Yes.

Prabhupāda: As in the matter there is atom, similarly, spirit there is atom. Simply . . . now, both these, beginning from the supreme down to the atom, this is, they are expansion of different energy of Kṛṣṇa—either this material atom or the spiritual atom. Now, we are spiritual atom. We living entities, we are spiritual atoms, and by material atomic combination we have developed this body, although this material body is foreign to me.

Similarly, we can develop our spiritual body also in the spiritual world. Is it clear? Just like in the material world, in combination with matter we have developed this material body. Do you believe in this, that "I am spiritual atom, and I have developed this material body on the basis of spiritual atom?" It is a fact. It is a fact.

Just like in the mother's womb when the spiritual atom takes place, then it grows; it forms the material body. Without that spiritual atom, there cannot be any growth of body. Simply sex intercourse does not give guarantee of pregnancy. Unless that spiritual atom is there, the body does not grow. That is . . . we get information from authoritative śāstra.

So the whole material world is also grown up upon the spiritual existence. And our whole problem is that instead of having this material body, we have to get our spiritual body. That is Kṛṣṇa conscious . . . that is the benefit of Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti mām eti.

Now, one who goes to Kṛṣṇa, do you mean to say: "One who goes to Kṛṣṇa vacant"? No. He goes to Kṛṣṇa with a body. Just like Kṛṣṇa has got body, so you also go before Him . . . just like you come to me with a body, I go to you with a body. You are a spiritual atom; I am also spiritual atom. Now I have developed this body; you have developed this body. Our meeting is between these two bodies. Similarly, when you go to Kṛṣṇa, mad dhāma, or Kṛṣṇa's dhāma, His abode, we go there with spiritual body.


Devotee: Does the spiritual world contain spatial relationships?

Prabhupāda: Huh?

Devotee: Are things bounded by space in the spiritual world? In other words, is there spatial . . .

Prabhupāda: Yes. Yes. That is only spiritual. As you have got a material space, similarly, there is spiritual space. As you have got material body, similarly, you have got spiritual body.

Janis: What is the difference between spiritual body and spiritual atoms?

Prabhupāda: Yes. Matter is not eternal, and spirit is eternal. Matter is full of ignorance, and spirit is full of knowledge. Matter is full of unpleasantness, and spirit is full of pleasure, sac-cid-ānanda. That is the difference between matter and spirit.

Janis: And what is the difference between spiritual atom and spiritual body? Or are they the same thing?

Prabhupāda: No. Spiritual atom . . . just like from the spiritual body you have developed this material body, similarly, from the spiritual atom you can develop your spiritual body. Tyaktvā deham. Tyaktvā deham means that giving up this material body, he develops this spiritual body and then goes to the kingdom of God, or Kṛṣṇa. Tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti mām eti. So when he goes to Kṛṣṇa, he goes in spiritual body. So there is potency of every living being. Just like he has got the potency of developing this material body, similarly, he has got the potency of developing spiritual body. Is it any difficulty to understand? It is clear.

So our problem is that we are suffering all kinds of miseries on account of this material body. Now, our business should be that we shall be cultured in Kṛṣṇa consciousness so that in next life will be my spiritual body. Then the solution of all problems solved. And so long we shall get material body repeatedly—just like we give up this dress and take another dress, similarly, we shall continue—then the four kinds of miseries, janma-mṛtyu-jarā-vyādhi (BG 13.9), or at least these four kinds of miseries—the miseries of birth, the miseries of death and the miseries of old age and miseries of diseases—we have to suffer.

And as soon as you get spiritual body, all these miseries over. Because your body is no more subjected to birth and death, disease and old age. That life is eternal, full of knowledge, and blissful. That you can get simply by studying the nature of Kṛṣṇa, transcendental nature of Kṛṣṇa.

So we are hankering after so many things. We are taking the leadership of this leader, that leader, that leader just to relieve, get relief from our temporary misery. Our duty should be just to get rid of all miseries by developing that spiritual body. That should be the aim of life. And that is possible by Kṛṣṇa consciousness.

Any other question? Oh. (break)

Guest (2): I mean if it passed on. It's just a dim thought, that's all.

Prabhupāda: Your question is whether miseries are eternal or not.

Guest (2): Eternal force.

Prabhupāda: No. Miseries are not eternal. You can end your miseries. But if you want to end miseries materially, that is temporary. If you end your miseries spiritually, that is permanent. Just like in this world we are also trying to end our miseries. Suppose I am distressed or I am diseased. I go to hospital to end my miseries. But that misery are not permanent, er, that end of misery is not permanent—temporary. I can get again diseased. So long I have got this material body, that miseries can be repeated. That disease can be repeated. But if you get your spiritual body, then there is no more question of miseries.


Devotee: Is a human birth superior in terms of self-realization? Is it superior to birth as a demigod?

Prabhupāda: Huh?

Devotee: Is the human birth superior in terms of self-realization? Is it superior to the birth as a demigod?

Prabhupāda: Yes. Demigod is also like you. Just like in the human society there are difference of bodies: One body is richer than the other body. One body is happier than the other body in material estimation. Similarly, in the higher planets there are different bodies who are happier than persons who are living in this material planet, I mean to . . . this earthly planet. It is estimated that their standard of living is higher.

Just like in this planet there are different nations and different people, and they have got different standard of living also. Your European and American people, your standard of living better than our Indian people, so far material consideration is there. You have got very nice toilet room, but the Indians go to the field to evacuate. You see? So in that way this country is advantageous.

So as you find even in this planet there are different species of life, different species of humankind, and they have got different standards of living, similarly, in the higher planet there are also living entities just like us. They are also like man, but their position is different. Their bodily constitution is different. Their living standard is different.

But in spite of different being, they are subjected to the material laws, the birth, death, old age and diseases. They are not free from that. Nobody is free. Within this universe, anyone, either human being or demigod or animal or anyone, they are subjected to these four principles of miseries: birth, death and old age and disease. So when you get out of this material world, then you get free from this. Their duration of life may be greater than your duration of life, but death is sure.

You cannot get rid of death in higher planets. Death is there, sure. The duration of life . . . just like a man's duration of life than the duration of the life of a dog is greater, but both are subjected to the principle of death. That one cannot avoid. But if you want to avoid the subjugation under death, then you have to develop your spiritual body, and that is possible by Kṛṣṇa consciousness.

Any other question? Yes?

Woman: Are there individuals in these bodies?

Prabhupāda: Eh?

Woman: Are there individuals in these bodies? . . . (indistinct)

Prabhupāda: You are individual spirit. You are individual spirit. Are you not? Don't you feel it? Don't you feel your individuality?

Woman: Yes, but if there is one . . . (indistinct) . . . be eternally one.

Prabhupāda: Yes. You become one in the quality of spirit. Do you follow?

Woman: No, I don't understand that I have got a spiritual body, really.

Prabhupāda: Oh, then . . . (chuckles). That you take information from Bhagavad-gītā. There is spiritual body. And why it is difficult to understand? You can understand it that your materially body has developed from that atomic existence of spirit. You can understand that?

Woman: Yes.

Prabhupāda: Similarly, from that atomic spiritual existence, you can develop your spiritual body also. What is the difficulty? It is the same process. As you have developed your material body, similarly, you can develop your spiritual body. What is the difficulty in understanding it?

Woman: But eventually don't we all merge in one spirit.

Prabhupāda: You are merged in matter—still, you have got your individual existence. What is your body? This is matter. Is it not? Then are you not merged in matter? Then still you have got your individuality existence. Don't you agree? Similarly, I may merge in the spiritual existence, but still, my individuality will be there. You are merged already in this matter.

Just like when you leave this body, your body will be transformed into earth. That means it is already merged. Still, you have got separate existence. And what is that separate existence? Due to that spirit. So even in the matter, if the spirit can maintain separate existence, don't you think in spirit it cannot maintain its separate existence?

Merging means just like aeroplane. Aeroplane is flying in the air, in the sky. When it goes too far, it becomes too small, you say, "It has merged into the sky." But it has got, even in that position, it has got his . . . it's separate existence. Just like a bird, a parrot, enters a tree. The tree is also green, and the bird is also green. When it enters the tree, you see no separate existence of the bird, but it has got a separate existence. Similarly, either you are in material existence or in spiritual existence, you are already merged, but you have got your separate existence. Is it clear?

Woman: Mm-hmm.

Prabhupāda: Thank you. Now let us have kīrtana. (end)