Collaborate with us to invoke and fully manifest Srila Prabhupada's Vani-presence.
681202 - Lecture SB 02.02.05 - Los Angeles
- cīrāṇi kiṁ pathi na santi diśanti bhikṣāṁ
- naivāṅghripāḥ para-bhṛtaḥ sarito 'py aśuṣyan
- ruddhā guhāḥ kim ajito 'vati nopasannān
- kasmād bhajanti kavayo dhana-durmadāndhān
- (SB 2.2.5)
This life of spiritual execution cannot be hampered by any material condition. From Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam we understand that sa vai puṁsāṁ paro dharmo yato bhaktir adhokṣaje (SB 1.2.6). That is the highest type of religious performances, by which one can achieve the perfection of loving God. Yato bhaktir adhokṣaje. Bhakti means to offer transcendental loving service to the Supreme Lord. Bhakti. Bhaj-dhātu sevayā(?). Bhaj. Bhaj-dhātu, it is a verb, bhaj. Bhaj means to render service, just like servant renders service to the master, friend service to the friend..., renders service to the friend, wife renders service to the husband, husband renders service to the wife.
This service-rendering process is going on everywhere. Nobody is absolute that he does not render service to anyone. That is not possible. I have repeatedly explained that if somebody has no master to serve, he voluntarily accepts a cat or dog as his master to serve. The nice name is "pet dog," but it is serving. The mother serves the child. So one who has no child, he takes the cat as her child and serves.
So the service mood is going on everywhere. But the highest perfection of service is when we learn to serve the Supreme Absolute Lord. That is called bhakti. And that bhakti, execution of service to the Lord, is ahaitukī. Just like we have got some little examples. This mother is serving the child not with any expectation.
She loves to serve the child. She wants to see the child is in comfort, the child does not feel any discomfiture. That is her pleasure. There is no reason why she is loving. That is natural. Similarly, when we invoke our natural love for God, that is the highest perfection of religious principle. Ahaituky apratihatā. Apratihatā means it cannot be checked by any material condition.
Just like we want to chant Hare Kṛṣṇa; this is service. This is the beginning of service, chanting the glories of the Lord, or praying the Lord, "Hare, O the energy of the Lord, Kṛṣṇa, O Lord, please engage me in Your service." This is the prayer. Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare, repeatedly, "Please engage me. Please engage me." But God can give you many things. Whatever you want, He is giving. Ye yathā māṁ prapadyante (BG 4.11). He can give you even salvation. But very rarely He gives you the chance of serving Him. So service is not an ordinary thing. So this is..., this service is unimpaired, unchecked by any material condition.
So Śukadeva Gosvāmī, he gives us some definition how you can be completely independent to serve the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Now our problem is eating, sleeping. Eating, sleeping. After sleeping, there is mating or fearing. These are the problems of bodily demands. So Śukadeva Gosvāmī recommends for a serious devotee, he said, cīrāṇi kiṁ pathi na santi.
Cīrāṇi means worn-out, rejected garments. In your country it is very usual to find in the dustbin so many things are thrown away. So sometimes nice dress is also thrown away. So Śukadeva Gosvāmī says that if you have problem of dressing yourself, just pick up some old garments from the street. Cīrāṇi kiṁ pathi na santi.
"All right. I get my garment. What about my food?" He says, cīrāṇi kiṁ pathi na santi diśanti bhikṣāṁ aṅghripāḥ para-bhṛtaḥ. Aṅghripāḥ. Aṅghripāḥ means the living entity who eats by its leg. Just like we eat by our hand. Do you know what is that living entity who eats by the leg? Can you...
Prabhupāda: Huh? No. Trees. Yes. Yes. The trees, they eat from the root. That is their eating process. You pour water on the root of the tree, and that water the whole tree sucks. That is their eating. Therefore they are called aṅghripāḥ. They drink their food, eatables, by the leg. So their qualification is para-bhṛtaḥ. Para-bhṛtaḥ means trees are meant for sustaining others. Trees... Just like a nice mango tree, it produces nice fruit, but it does not eat. It is for you.
Para-bhṛtaḥ, maintains others. The tree gives shelter, the tree gives fruits. You cut trees for your purpose; it does not protest. Therefore the tree's life is dedicated for the service of others. So Śukadeva Gosvāmī says, "Whether such nice living entity who has dedicated his life for others does not give you fruits?" So why you are thinking of your food problem? The food is there in the tree and the garment is on the street.
Then where is my home, apartment? Śukadeva Gosvāmī says, ruddhā guhāḥ kim (SB 2.2.5), "Whether the caves of the mountain are closed?" They are open for you. The caves of the mountain are open for you, the trees are there to supply you food, and people throw away old garments, that is your dress. And water? Water supply? Śukadeva Gosvāmī says, "Whether the rivers are dried up?" There is water. In this way he gives a very nice list so that you can become very independent.
There is no problem for your bodily demands. But one has to practice. Formerly the saints, mendicants, sages, they used to practice like that, that not dependent on any condition. And so far God, God is within you, so you haven't got to go anywhere to search out God. God is with you, and you can be independent in this way.
So there is no problem for executing devotional service to the Lord. And that is the highest perfection of all religious principle. But we have to practice. And that is not possible in this age. This age is called Kali. It is very difficult age. People are not very much interested to the most important problem of life. They are alpāyuṣa. Prāyeṇālpāyuṣaḥ sabhya kalāv asmin yuge janāḥ (SB 1.1.10).
People are short-living and manda. Manda means very slow for ultimate goal of life. The ultimate goal of life is to search out or is to reestablish your lost relationship with God. That is the mission of human life. Otherwise, what is the difference between animal life and human life? The animal life, they are also busy for eating, sleeping, mating and defending. So if we human being, we are also similarly busy, then what is the difference?
So this sort of civilization, simply making nice arrangement for eating and sleeping and mating and defending, that is not practically human civilization. The human civilization is meant for searching out God. Na te viduḥ. They do not know, unfortunately. They have forgotten. But by good association, they can remember. Therefore this meeting of Krishna Consciousness Society's meeting is just to give people chance to associate with the Society and invoke their lost relationship with God. That is the missionary activities of this Society.
So that is the highest gift to the human society. There are so many welfare activities in the human society. People open hospitals, schools, colleges, charitable institution. They are nice. But the best contribution to the human society is to revive his lost relationship with God. Just like a rich man's son.
Someway or other he has left his father's home and he's loitering here and there. Somebody finds him: "Oh, you are Mr. Such-and-such. You are the son of such-and-such gentleman. He's very rich man. Why you are suffering? Come, come with me. I shall take to your father." So this is one kind of welfare activity.
And another welfare activity, the same person who is loitering in the street, somebody says, "Oh, you are hungry. All right, come on. I shall give you some bread." That is also welfare activity. But this welfare activity, to get the lost son to his father, rich father, not ordinary father, that is the best service. Similarly, all living entities, as Kṛṣṇa claims in the Bhagavad-gītā... Kṛṣṇa claims,
- sarva-yoniṣu kaunteya
- sambhavanti mūrtayaḥ yāḥ
- tāsāṁ mahad yonir brahma
- ahaṁ bīja-pradaḥ pitā
- (BG 14.4)
In many places in the Bhagavad-gītā Kṛṣṇa claims all living entities as His sons, parts and parcel. Just like your children, they are part and parcel of your body. They are not different from you. The same blood is running in his body. Similarly, our constitutional position is that the same blood of God is running in our body. We are not different in that way from God.
There are two kinds of philosophers. One class of philosopher, they say that we are one with God. Another class of philosopher says that we are different, God is different from living entity. But Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu has adjusted that we are simultaneously one and different, just like the father and the son. The father is one with the son, but at the same time, the son is different from the father. The son cannot claim cent per cent equality with the father. That is not possible. But the son's body is nondifferent from the father's body.
Similarly, living entities, we are simultaneously one and different from God. One in this sense: that all the qualities that God has, the same qualities the living entity has. But the difference is God has all the qualities in fullness, and so far we are concerned, we have got all the godly qualities in minute. That is the difference. Aṇu and vibhu. Vibhu means unlimited, and aṇu means limited. So we have got opulence, fame, beauty, strength, influence, knowledge—all good qualities that God has. But God has got in full; we have got in minute quantity.
So anyway, qualitatively, we are one with God. Therefore our business is how to again unite with God qualitatively. That is the highest perfection of human life. And this chance of realization, how we can unite again with God, or Kṛṣṇa, is given only in the human form of life. We are wandering in so many species of life, transmigration of the soul. Vāsāṁsi jīrṇāni yathā vihāya (BG 2.22). Just we change our dress, similarly we are changing our body every moment, and finally we are changing to other body. Not only we are changing or transmigrating from one body to another, but we are transmigrating from one planet to another. These things are all explained in the Bhagavad-gītā.
How we are changing our planets also, that is explained:
- ūrdhvaṁ gacchanti sattva-sthā
- madhye tiṣṭhanti rājasāḥ
- adho gacchanti tāmasāḥ
- (BG 14.18)
Those who are developing the modes of good qualities, they are gradually being promoted to the higher planetary system, heavenly planet—Satyaloka, Janaloka, Maharloka. In those planets the duration of life is very long, the possibilities of sense enjoyment is very nice. Everything thousand, thousand times better than this. This is not very difficult to understand. Just like in your country...
Although within this planet the standard of living is far, far nice, better than some other country, similarly there are hundreds and millions of planets, other planets, where the standard of living is far, far better. So we are, according to our work, we are sometimes promoted to those planets and sometimes to the lower-grade planets, adho gacchanti tāmasāḥ (BG 14.18).
So this is going on. I do not know how long, since what time we have begun this wandering, changing. Lord Caitanya says that ei rūpe brahmāṇḍa bhramite kona bhāgyavān jīva (CC Madhya 19.151). He says that the living entities are wandering in such a way, in different species of life, in different planets, lower and higher. In this way, if he is fortunate enough, he comes in contact with a bona fide spiritual master under the grace of Lord Kṛṣṇa. That means if anyone is fortunate, he comes in contact with guru and Kṛṣṇa, a bona fide spiritual master and Kṛṣṇa.
And what is the benefit? The benefit is guru-kṛṣṇa-kṛpāya pāya bhakti-latā-bīja (CC Madhya 19.151). The benediction from the bona fide spiritual master and Lord is that his sense of devotional service is invoked. That is the gift. He does not give anything material opulence.
Of course, if one is advanced in spiritual consciousness, material happiness is not very rare for him. That is automatically there. But the gift of Kṛṣṇa and spiritual master is to inject him. Not inject him... The devotional service, love of Godhead, is there, but to invoke it.
This devotional service is not artificial. In every one of you there is dormant devotional service, as I have already explained, but they are exhibited in a different way. Instead of loving God, that devotional service is diverted in loving a dog. But the love is there. Love is there.
Nitya-siddha kṛṣṇa-bhakti sādhya kabhu naya (CC Madhya 22.107). It is said that this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is not an artificial thing that we have manufactured something, ideal thing, concocted, and we are preaching to the world that "You become Kṛṣṇa conscious." No. The Kṛṣṇa consciousness is there. What is that Kṛṣṇa consciousness? To love God. That is there. We are simply helping that "You try to love God; then you'll be happy." That is our mission.
Therefore this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is postgraduate position of all religion. You accept Christianity—very good. You accept Muhammadanism, Islamism—very good. You accept Hinduism—that's all right. We have no quarrel with Hindus and Muslims or Christians or Buddhists.
But our objective is that religion means there is connection, relationship with God. Take, for example, Christian religion. They accept God: "God created this," the beginning of Bible. That's a fact. So the God consciousness is there. "God is great," the God consciousness there.
Now these Christmas holidays you have begun in your country. Throughout the whole month of December you'll observe nice festival, festivities. Why? Where it began? God consciousness. Lord Christ, he came to give you God consciousness, and in his relationship these festivities are going on. It may be degraded in another form, but the beginning is God consciousness.
But we have lost it. So people cannot be happy without reviving God consciousness. It may be named in a different way—"Kṛṣṇa consciousness." That means God consciousness. That is the necessity. He's trying to love somebody. That somebody's love will be perfected when he loves Kṛṣṇa, or God.
We are teaching that. Try to love God, and if you love God, if you love Kṛṣṇa, then automatically you love everybody. That is the perfection of love. The example is just like if you love your stomach, if you supply nice food to your stomach, that means you love all the parts of your body. If you supply foodstuff in the stomach, the energy is distributed in all parts of the body. That means you love all parts of the body. If you love the tree, you pour water on the root, and the water is distributed to the branches, fruits, flowers, leaves, everywhere.
So you try to love God and you'll see that you're loving even an ant. There are many examples I can cite in the history, how a man became universal lover. I have told you many times the story of a hunter. The hunter was taking pleasure by killing animals half, and when the same hunter became a devotee, he was not prepared to kill even an ant. So this is love of Godhead. This is the sign, that the same hunter who was killing every day so many animals, when he became a great devotee of Lord, he was not willing—because he becomes vastly learned.
To become lover of God means fully enlightened in consciousness. He sees that "Here is an ant. This living entity, a small living entity, is also part and parcel. By his own work, he has got this insignificant body as an ant. I have got this human form of body, but that does not make any difference between the soul and the soul." Paṇḍitāḥ sama-darśinaḥ (BG 5.18). When it becomes actually... When a man becomes actually learned, he's sama-darśīna, he sees everyone on the equal level.
I was seeing just this evening the Ten Commandments. Now, in the Ten Commandments, the one commandment is that "Thou shall not kill." But I am sorry to feel that killing propensity is so great in the Christian world. Why? Because there is lack of love of God. That "Thou shall not kill," and now there is organized killing process.
So I do not know how they are following the Christian principles. It is clearly stated, "Thou shall not kill. Thou shall not tease your neighbor." So why should I tease an animal neighbor? These defects are due to lack of love of God.
Therefore the whole problems of the world can be solved only by this movement, how to love God. This is a very sane proposal. Let anybody come before us and we shall be able to convince him that this is the only solution for all the problems of the world. You try to love God and everything will be solved. Otherwise, there is no possibility. Na te viduḥ svārtha-gatiṁ hi viṣṇuṁ durāśayā ye bahir-artha-māninaḥ (SB 7.5.31).
These are stated in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. Andhā yathāndhair upanīyamānās te 'pīśa-tantryām uru-dāmni baddhāḥ. They do not know what is the solution of world problems. What is that solution? They do not know the solution is svārtha-gatiṁ viṣṇum: your interest is to love God.
Unfortunately, you have been misled, durāśayā, by a false hope. Bahir-artha-māninaḥ, by external energy. The leaders... Now we are, we are preaching love of God, nobody is interested. But if we had given some political bluff that "Here will be such-and-such party's meeting, and it will give you heaven hand to hand," oh, people will throng. You see? Because they are cheating. Satya bole ta mare lakta(?). There is a nice poet, he says that if you tell the truth, people will come with their logs to hurt you. And chuta jagat bolai(?): and if you bluff them, they will be very nicely follower. This is the position.
Actually, this is the solution. It is not that "This Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement or Bhaktivedanta Swami who has started, he has concocted this idea." No. It is standard. You come to argument, to reason, this formula: that your interest is to love God. You have no other interest in this human form of life. Then your problems of life will be solved. Otherwise there is no possibility. If any other person is giving you any other idea, he's simply misleading you.
That is also stated in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, andhā yathāndhair upanīyamānāḥ (SB 7.5.31). Just like a blind man is leading other blind men. What he'll do? If a blind man says, "Come on. Come along with me. I shall cross you this road," what is the benefit of this assurance? He is blind himself. Therefore in spite of so much endeavor in the United Nation for the last twenty or twenty-five years, there is no solution; simply the flags are increasing. (laughter)
Instead of becoming united, the flags are increasing. I have got practical experience. Now India become independent. So India was one. Now there are two: Pakistan and India. So there was one flag; now it is two. And gradually, it will increase to four. So when I pass that United Nation building, I simply see the flags are increasing. Instead of increasing the peace movement, the flags are increasing, that's all.
So this sort of bluffing blind leaders cannot make happy the human society. This is the only solution: to push on Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, love of Godhead. Everyone will be happy, the human society. Viśvaṁ pūrṇaṁ sukhāyate (Prabhodānanda Sarasvatī). Whole universe will be just like Vaikuṇṭha. Vaikuṇṭha means without anxiety. The material civilization means full of anxiety. Full of anxiety. Nobody... Just like everyone, every animal, every bird, everyone is anxious. The bird, you give him some grains, it will eat, but it will look like this: "Oh, if somebody is not coming to kill me."
Anxiety, you see. America is so great, big nation, full of anxiety: "Russia is not coming? China is not coming? Oh, the Vietnam is there." The China is also, "Oh, America is doing something. Oh. Let us see." This is going on. What is this greatness? Increasing the anxieties, that's all. Sadā samudvigna-dhiyām asad-grahāt (SB 7.5.5). Because they have accepted something unreal, which will not give them happiness. Here is reality, love of God. You take it. Don't expect that it will be taken by all the nations, all the people. You take it individually and see how much you are happy. Individually. That is our request.
So we have no place. So we don't mind. We can sit down underneath a tree and preach this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. Some gentleman has offered this garage. That's all right. So people are afraid to give us place, you see, because we are pushing God consciousness. That is our fault. You see? This is the position. So never mind. We can sit down anywhere and chant Hare Kṛṣṇa. And I'll request you to come and join us, and you'll be happy.
Thank you very much.
Devotees: Jaya Śrīla Prabhupāda. (obeisances)
Prabhupāda: Any question? We invite questions. If you have got any doubts about this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, you can ask. We shall try to reply.
(pause) So there is no question? Yes?
Devotee: Prabhupāda? When the soul transmigrates from one body to another, the consciousness also of that gross(?) body, does the person retain some of the consciousness of his past lives with that transmigration?
Prabhupāda: Yes. Consciousness is a constant companion of the soul. The consciousness means there is soul. Just like this body. I am speaking, I am talking or I am feeling—this consciousness. I am conscious. Why? Because I, the soul, is present. So consciousness is the symptom of the presence of the soul. Therefore when the soul transmigrates, the consciousness is also there in another body. But this consciousness, if I take God consciousness, then I go to God. And if I take dog consciousness, I go to dog. That's all.
The consciousness is there. Therefore we have to purify our consciousness. Instead of dog consciousness we have to make it God consciousness. That will be our perfection of life. Otherwise, the consciousness which you carry at the time of your death, you get a similar body. There are 8,400,000's species of life, and we may think of in a varied way. That is the technique of Kṛṣṇa consciousness. At the time of, if we keep our Kṛṣṇa consciousness intact, that is our perfection of life. Otherwise we do not know what is my next life.
The example is given just like air is passing. Air is very subtle matter. If it is passing on the rose flower, the flavor is carried in other place also, rose scent. And if the air is passing on the stool, the scent or the bad smell of the stool is carried to the other place. Similarly, if you make your consciousness rosy, then your next life is rose flavor. (chuckles) And if you make your consciousness stool, then your next life is condemned. Yes.
Man: (indistinct) thinks if the qualities of God are contained in man but only on a minute scale, and in God all qualities are on a great scale...
Prabhupāda: Full scale, yes.
Man: ...then are not also the evil qualities in man existent in God, too, but...
Prabhupāda: Yes. The evil qualities... What you call evil, that quality is also there in God. But God, being absolute, there is no evil; everything is good. God is good. I'll give you example. Just like the father is sometimes angry. The quality of anger is taken as bad quality. But if the father is sometimes angry on the father (son), that is not bad. That is for his good. Therefore...
This is a crude example. The qualities are there in God; otherwise how we can get the quality? If the anger quality is not there in God, how we get this quality? That is a fact. But His anger and your anger is different because you are in materially contaminated.
So qualities, as they are, they are not bad. But when they are saturated with the contamination of this material world, they appear to be bad. Just like a naughty child. A naughty child means that child is going to be very intelligent boy or girl in future. That is a fact. Naughtiness means that child is very intelligent. So in course of time that naughtiness will fructify into intelligence.
So here all the godly qualities are misrepresented, perverted reflection. Just like love. Now, our worshipable God is Kṛṣṇa and Rādhā, conjugal love perfection. The same love is descended here also, love between boy and girl, but that is perverted. The love is there. The same love is there also.
Otherwise wherefrom this girl? Why a girl is attracted by a boy? Why a boy is attracted by a girl? That is natural. That is coming from God, His pleasure potency. But because that love is being manifested with the contamination of this material world, that is perverted.
So every quality... That is the, I mean, scientific way of studying God. Whatever qualities you have got, you can understand the same qualities is there in God; but your present condition being contaminated with material contact, it is being pervertedly represented. This has to be purified. This is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. The same thing. The same love affair, the same anger or anything, that is to be purified. Then it is godly. That's all.
So this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is to purify. Sarvopādhi-vinirmuktaṁ tat-paratvena nirmalam (CC Madhya 19.170). Nirmalam means purification, completely purified. When this... Suppose this anger. If this anger is applied in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, it is purified. It is purified. Just like Arjuna. Arjuna was not becoming angry to his enemy. He was very good man. "No, I'm not going to fight." And Kṛṣṇa was, I mean to say, encouraging him to be angry. Otherwise, how could he fight? So when he fought for Kṛṣṇa, that became service. Of course, these are very intricate questions. When one studies very seriously and scientifically, this will be revealed.
So on the whole, one can understand that "All the qualities of God is with me. But I am now materially contaminated." Just like a diseased person. A diseased person, he wants to enjoy the facilities of healthy life, but the physician says, "No, don't. Don't." Because that will create danger. Similarly, all the qualities we have got, but because it is materially contaminated, the Kṛṣṇa consciousness process is to purify them and to bring them to the normal condition, and then it will be happy. That is the whole idea. (pause)
Viṣṇujana: How can the purification process, Prabhupāda, be carried through the average life, twenty-four hours a day?
Prabhupāda: The purification process is stated in Nārada Pañcarātra: sarvopādhi-vinirmuktaṁ tat-paratvena nirmalam (CC Madhya 19.170). You have to free yourself from the designation. Designation. The same example can be given, just like Arjuna. He was designating himself with the Kuru family; therefore he was impure. When he gave up this designation, he identified his interest with Kṛṣṇa, he became devotee.
So we have to give up this designation, "I am American," "I am Indian," "I am Christian," "I am Hindu," "I am this," "I am that"—"I am Kṛṣṇa's. I am God's. I am servant of God." And if you act in that way, then whole thing becomes purified. And if you keep your designation accidentally... Just like you are American. This is accidental.
By somehow or other, you have come to accept a body from the American family. Now this will be changed. You do not know what is your next body. So this is changing. This is not my permanent settlement. But your permanent settlement is to identify yourself that "I am Kṛṣṇa's." That is your permanent settlement.
So if you put yourself in that position, being freed from all designation, then your process of everything, all qualities, become purified.
- tat-paratvena nirmalam
- hṛṣīkeṇa hṛṣīkeśa-
- sevanaṁ bhaktir ucyate
- (CC Madhya 19.170)
Hṛṣīka. Hṛṣīka means senses. So when the senses are applied for Hṛṣīkeśa—means Kṛṣṇa—then it is purified. And when the senses are applied in our designated position, that is impure; that is contaminated.
Woman: When there are several living entities within a close area of space or there are several living entities...
Prabhupāda: They are under different designation, that's all. Different living entities means under different designations. That's all. And when that designation is off, then he's Kṛṣṇa's. That's all. Actually he is Kṛṣṇa's, but under different designations he has got different bodies. So if we place ourself in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, in spite of this designated body, still we become purified. Jīvan-muktaḥ sa ucyate. He's liberated even living within this material tabernacle.
Īhā yasya harer dāsye (Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu 1.2.187). If anyone fixes his mind up to the service of Kṛṣṇa, then in whatever condition he may be, he is a liberated person. Simply we have to fix up that we shall simply execute business of Kṛṣṇa. That's all.
All right. Thank you. Now chant. (end)