670104 - Lecture BG 10.04-5 - New York

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His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

670104BG.NY - January 04, 1967


buddhir jñānam asammohaḥ
kṣamā satyaṁ damaḥ śamaḥ
sukhaṁ duḥkhaṁ bhavo 'bhāvo
bhayaṁ cābhayam eva ca
(BG 10.4)

So we have to understand these qualifications. Intelligence. Buddhiḥ means intelligence. Jñānam means knowledge. Asammohaḥ means freedom from illusion. Kṣamā. Kṣamā, forgiveness. Satyam, truth. Damaḥ. Damaḥ means controlling the senses, and samaḥ, to keep the mind equibalanced. Sukham means happiness. Duḥkham, distress, bhava means birth. Abhāva. Abhāva means death, bhayam, fear, and abhayam, fearlessness. Ahiṁsā, nonviolence; samatā, equality; tuṣṭiḥ, satisfaction; tapaḥ, penance; dānam charity; yaśaḥ, fame; ayaśaḥ, defamation; bhavanti, "all these become," bhāvāḥ... Bhāva means state of being. Bhūtānām, "of all living entities;" mattaḥ, "from Me;" eva, certainly; pṛthag-vidhāḥ, differently. Because Kṛṣṇa has declared already, aham ādir hi devānām (BG 10.2). Maharṣīṇāṁ ca sarva. He is the original cause of everything.

Now... Then He must be the cause of all good qualification and bad qualification also. Whatever we see in this material world, we consider, "This is bad, and this is good." We have divided that, according to our calculation. But actually there are... They are varied manifestation of the qualities of Kṛṣṇa. Here in the material world, those qualities, transcendental qualities, they are in Kṛṣṇa and they are in living entities. Just like we have all these qualities.

Take for example buddhi. Buddhi means intelligence. And what is that intelligence? Real intelligence? Real intelligence is to know, to understand that "Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme, and I am part and parcel." It is stated here that intelligence means sukhārtha-vivecana-samatyam.(?) Suppose one is very intelligent to drive a car. That is not... That is material intelligence for earning our bread. Real intelligence is sukhārtha(?), the finer sentiments to understand the finer activities of this nature. That is called buddhi, to understand how things are happening. Just like one is considered to be intelligent when he tries to understand not this physiological or anatomical construction of this body. He wants to see by intelligence what is the active principle of this body that is working. That is intelligence, not that...

Just like a child. A child sees that a nice motor car runs in the street. He thinks that the motor car is running out of its own accord. That is not intelligence. The motor car is not running... In spite of its... Just like here we have got this tape recorder, this microphone. Somebody may say, "Oh, how fine discoveries are these. They are working so nicely." But one should see that this tape recorder or this microphone cannot work for a single moment unless a spirit soul touch it. This is intelligence. We should not be wonderful by seeing a machine. We should try to find out who is working the machine. That is intelligence, sukhārtha-vivecanam, to see the finer.

Grossly seeing, that is not intelligence. Oh, man is working; man is living; man is writing books, oh, wonderfully. He is scientist. But what that finer things that at once it is vanished; the scientist becomes fool. No more scientist. Can scientist discover something and place it before his student that "When my body will be stopped, you inject this thing, and I'll come out again." Has scientist discovered this thing? No. If scientist could discover such thing then there would have been no scarcity of scientist. Sir Isaac Newton, Sir Jagadish Chandra Bose, Sir P.C. Raya and so many scientists all over the world, they have discovered very, very... In your country, Edison... They have discovered so many wonderful things. Oh. Then why don't you... O Mr. Scientist, why don't you discover something so that we can keep it as soon as your body will be stopped, and we shall inject this scientific, and you will come out again and work? So this is called intelligence.

The scientist is working, the philosopher is working, not out of his own accord. It is working under the spell of material nature. Therefore in the Bhagavad-gītā you'll find

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

Prakṛti... By nature's law he's working. Why not everybody scientist? Why not everybody? If it is accidental and it is automatic, why there are so many differences? Here is a scientist; here is a fool. Why? Why this distinction? The distinction is made by prakṛti, by nature.

And what is this prakṛti? That prakṛti is mayādhyakṣeṇa prakṛtiḥ sūyate sa-carācaram (BG 9.10). Oh. Kṛṣṇa says, "Under My direction this prakṛti is working." The prakṛti, nature, is the agent. The real worker is Kṛṣṇa. We are simply instrument. That is our position. If you have got intelligence, then you have to understand that you are simply an instrument. Just like my hand. What is this hand? This is an instrument. I can pick up. So I am working, not this hand is working. I am working. So people do not understand it. Ahaṅkāra-vimūḍhātmā. By false ego he is thinking, "Oh, I am scientist. I am philosopher. I am Rockefeller. I am businessman, I am swami. I am this." Sometimes we think, "I am poor. I am this. I am that."

No. You are simply instrument in the hands of Kṛṣṇa. That is intelligence. Therefore you should work as Kṛṣṇa desires. That is real intelligence. If you work in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, that is real intelligence. And if you work against Kṛṣṇa, that is foolishness. That is the distinction between intelligent and foolishness. Jñānam. Jñāna means knowledge. Now, so far knowledge is concerned, here is a key packet. If you want to make research who has made this packet, who has discovered it, in which country first it was introduced, in what material it is made, oh, you can write volumes of books. You can speculate in any damn thing, and you can write volumes of books. That does not mean that you are a man of knowledge. There are so many.

I'll give you one very nice example. This is practical. In my youthhood I was manager in a big chemical firm. So there was a sulphuric acid chamber. There was some defect. It was not working well. In that chamber sulphur is given, and it is fused, and then acid comes out. So it was not working. So there were many scientists. They were sitting, consulting books: "Oh, why it is not working?" Then the managing director, Dr. Bose... He was very intelligent man. He at once went to another firm. They were also chemical. He knew there was an ordinary worker; he was very experienced. So... He was Muhammadan. He called him at once, "Just come and see what is defect there." And he at once came and manipulated some machine—at once acid transformed. All the theoretical scientists, they sat down. So this kind of experience you'll find even an ordinary man.

And even in bird you'll find. They have got some sort of specific intelligence or knowledge. That is not knowledge. You'll find even in animals there are some wonderful activities which we cannot perform. That is not knowledge. Knowledge means to understand spirit and matter. That is knowledge, what is spirit, what is matter. Just like after intellectual research you find that there is something within this body which is working without which this body is useless. Then, when you come to knowledge that this is this and this is that, when you understand that this is spirit and this is matter... Matter is working due to the touch of the spirit.

Just like I have already explained that this, I mean to say, tape recorder, this microphone, is working because a boy who is spirit soul, he has touched it. Without(?) touching. So therefore we must distinguish that what is matter and spirit. Matter cannot work without touch of spirit. Matter is dependent on spirit. This is knowledge, not that matter is prominent and spirit is neglected. That is foolishness.

Therefore in the present education there is hardly a few persons who are actually in knowledge because they have neglected the spirit side of the activity. They have taken only the material side of the activity. So if you come to according to the Bhagavad-gītā, then it is a civilization of fools. That you may call...(?) They are giving too much stress on the motor car machine and not to the driver. The driver is neglected. This is foolish civilization. Man is neglected.

I think in my childhood when I was a student, Scottish Churches College, I read one magazine from your country. I think that magazine is still current, Scientific America. Is there any magazine? Yes. In magazine I saw one picture. I think that skyscraper was beginning at that time. A man was working very heartily, and the picture is there that for manufacturing matter, a soul is being killed. You see? That is material civilization. They are giving too much stress on the matter, on the material side, but they are neglecting the spirit. That is not civilization. One should give more stress on the spiritual side because that is the active principle. So that is called knowledge. A man is to be understood in knowledge when he is giving, I mean to say, importance to the spiritual side. He is called jñānī. Otherwise they are fools. So jñānam. Jñānam means cid-acid-vastu-vivecanam, to understand what is matter and spirit.

Now, a civilized, real, advanced civilization, the Aryans... The Aryans are called advanced. The actual meaning of Aryan means advanced, according to Sanskrit. This is a... Aryan is not any, I mean to say, English word or Hindu or any other language. It is the Sanskrit word, Aryan. Aryan. The word comes from the ārya, a-r-y-a, ārya. Now it has become a common word, Aryan, but originally it is Sanskrit word. And ārya means one who is advanced, or one who is civilized, one who knows, one who has knowledge. Then he is called ārya. In the Bhagavad-gītā you'll find. When Arjuna declined to fight, Kṛṣṇa condemned him, "Oh, you are just like talking like a non-Aryan, not Aryan."

So we all belong to the Aryan family. Historical reference is there, Indo-European family. So Aryan stock was on the central Asia. Some of them migrated to India. Some of them migrated to Europe. And from Europe you have come. So we belong to the Aryan family, but we have lost our knowledge. So we have become non-Aryan practically. Because we do not give importance to the spiritual side of life. The Aryan means one who gives importance to the spiritual side of life.

And what is that importance? The spiritual side importance-giving means one has to see how much important this human life is. Because in the human form of life the spirit soul, although it is conditioned by material, I mean to say, encagement, it has developed its consciousness by gradual evolution. This evolution theory is there in the Padma-Purāṇa. There is actually evolution from lower status of life beginning from the aquatics, small, then plant life, then germs' life, then birds' life, then beast life, then human form of life, then civilized human form of life.

So fortunately we have got now civilized form of life. The Aryan family means they are civilized form of life. But we are utilizing in the matter of maintaining this body. Āhāra-nidrā-bhaya-maithunaṁ ca. We are utilizing this material, this developed body. The spirit soul has got the chance now to liberate himself. There is a process. By nature's way, the evolution is to give chance the spirit to get out of this material entanglement. So people are not giving importance.

Therefore sometimes we find there is overpopulation. Overpopulation. What is this overpopulation? Overpopulation means that just like from lower class a student is promoted, and when he comes to the final class, if he does not pass, then the class is overcrowded. Suppose from one, two, three, four, one comes to the tenth class. Tenth class is meant for final examination and go to the college. So if in the tenth class the students fail, then the tenth class becomes overpopulated. Similarly, the present civilization we sometimes find that there is overpopulation. Overpopulation means we are not being promoted to higher life. We are being blocked, and therefore nature's course is: there must be some pestilence; there must be some war to finish it.

So there is no such intelligence, there is no such knowledge, and they are very much proud. So if we want really... Because these things are God gift, knowledge... It is explained here, buddhir jñānam asammohaḥ. All these things are gift of God. So we must utilize. This human form is developed for utilizing the gifts of God. God has given us nice foodstuff; God has given us intelligence; God has given us knowledge; now God has given us books of knowledge. He is personally speaking this Bhagavad-gītā. Why don't you utilize it? Why don't you utilize it? If we utilize it, then we may be proud of become Aryan or human being.

But if we don't utilize these things, simply we follow the animal propensity... Just like a dog is after a lady dog, similarly, if we are like that, just like hog is after a female hog, so this is not civilization. We must be sober. We must be sober. We must be distinct from animal life. That is called utilization of human form of life. Labdhvā su-durlabham idam. It is stated in the Vedic literature that labdhvā su-durlabham idaṁ bahu-sambhavānte: "This body is achieved after many, many, many, many births, after millions and trillions of years." Because... You don't think that all of a sudden, by accident, we have got this body. There are other bodies, cats, dogs and so many bodies. Why in this civilized form of? There must have been some process. So this is said in the Vedic literature, labdhvā su-durlabham idaṁ bahu-sambhavānte, mānuṣyam artha-dam: "This human form of life is achieved after many, many millions of other forms of birth."

And what is this form? Mānuṣyam, human form, man. This mānuṣya is Sanskrit word and English word, "man," there is similarity, Latin. Originally, this mānuṣyam, or "man" comes from the word Manu. Manu is the father of humankind. Mānuṣyam. So why it is so rare? Artha-dam. You can attain the highest perfection, artha-dam. Artha means money, or artha means substance. Artha-dam. So we are utilizing it for money-making. Artha means money also, but there is another meaning of artha. Artha means substance. We are missing the substance. We are attracted by material money only. So mānuṣyam artha-dam anityam apīha dhīraḥ. And anityam. Although artha-dam—it can deliver you the substance—but it is not permanent, anitya. Nitya means eternal, permanent; anitya means just the opposite. So the scriptures, Vedic scripture, advises you mānuṣyam artha-dam apīha dhīraḥ.

But if you are dhīra-dhīra means sober, intelligent—then how you shall utilize it? Tūrṇaṁ yateta anu-mṛtyu na pated yāvat. You should try to utilize your this human form of life to achieve the highest substance very soon. Tūrṇam means very soon. Why very soon? Anu-mṛtyu na pated yāvat. You do not know when your death will come. You do not know. So before death comes just utilize yourself. Don't think that "I am young man. Let me enjoy now. Eat, drink, be merry and enjoy." No. You should not neglect.

Prahlāda Mahārāja, a five years' old boy, he was instructed by Nārada Muni. He became a very great devotee. And he was instructing his class fellows when he was a five years' old boy. Because it doesn't matter whether he's a five years' old boy or five hundred years' old tree or a five millions years' stone. There is no utilization. If you become a five years' old boy and if you understand this knowledge your life is perfect. These things are all very nicely discussed. They say, "Oh..." Taravaḥ kiṁ na jīvanti (SB 2.3.18) . "Oh, you are very much proud of your long duration of life? Because you see that cats and dogs die within ten years or twenty years and you live seventy years or eighty years, therefore you are very much proud?" Oh. The answer is taravaḥ kiṁ na jīvanti: "Don't you see the tree? It lives five hundred years, thousand years." "Oh, a tree lives, but it cannot breathe." Oh. Bhastrā kiṁ na śvasanti: "Don't you see the bellow, a bag of skin? 'Bhass, bhass, bhass'—it is breathing. So do you think your breathing is very expertness?" "Well, they breathe, but they cannot enjoy sex life." "Oh. What is that? The dogs and hogs, they do not enjoy sex life? Do they not eat?"

In this way there is analysis. There is analysis, regular analysis: "What for you are so much proud?" The proudness should be proved when you are in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That is the perfection of life. Otherwise, you are cats and dogs. Don't take it that I am criticizing you. Just I am analyzing the fact. So this should be utilized. This is called intelligence. This is called jñāna. This is called free from bewilderment. These are the process. Even if we study Bhagavad-gītā nicely, analytically, systematically, in any way, with our intelligence... We have got intelligence; we have got reason. Then we become perfect man. This is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Take advantage of it. Don't spoil your life. That is our request. The society is for that purpose. We are not bluffing anybody that "Make exercise and go home," no. Here is something substantial. You try to understand it. Thank you very much. (end)