Collaborate with us to invoke and fully manifest Srila Prabhupada's Vani-presence.
720506 - Lecture Arrival - Honolulu
Prabhupāda: (prema-dvani) Thank you very much.
Devotees: All glories to Śrīla Prabhupāda. (Obeisances)
Prabhupāda: So, boys and girls who are kindly present here to cooperate with this movement, Hare Kṛṣṇa movement, I thank you very much for your coming here and participating with us.
This Hare Kṛṣṇa movement was started about five hundred years ago by Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu. He appeared in India, Bengal. There is a district called Nadia, or Navadvīpa. In the latter part of the fifteenth century He appeared, and when He was only twenty-four years old, a young man, He had very nice, beautiful young wife, very affectionate mother at home, but He took sannyāsa. Sannyāsa means, perhaps you know, renounced order of life.
According to Vedic system, one's life is divided into four parts. That is human program. Suppose one lives for a hundred years. It is calculated that a man can live up to a hundred years, although the duration of life is now reducing. So taking into consideration that a man lives for a hundred years, so life is divided into four parts, namely brahmacārī, student life; then gṛhastha, householder; then vānaprastha, retired life; then sannyāsa, renounced life. This is Vedic system.
But Caitanya Mahāprabhu, instead of waiting for the last stage of His life, He took sannyāsa at an early age, only twenty-four years old, when He should have began the householder's life. But He did not do so. For the benefit of the whole human society He renounced His family life and took sannyāsa and extensively traveled all over the tract of land called now India.
But He predicted that this missionary activities will be spread, in future, in as many towns and cities are there on the surface of the globe. And He entrusted Indians, those who are born in India, He entrusted them that "Please convey this message throughout the whole world." The exact language, Bengali language:
- bhārata-bhūmite manuṣya-janma haila yāra
- janma sārthaka kari' kara para-upakāra
- (CC Adi 9.41)
This means that anyone who has taken birth in India as a human being will kindly make his life successful, and after making his life successful he would distribute this knowledge throughout the whole world for the welfare of the human society. This was His order and prediction.
- pṛthivīte āche yata nagarādi grāma
- sarvatra pracāra haibe mora nāma
- (Caitanya-bhāgavata, Antya 4.126)
He also predicted that "I shall be well known all over the world in as many villages and towns are there."
So this mission is pursuant..., in pursuance of Lord Caitanya's mission. We are trying to spread His message throughout the whole world, and by the grace of His Lordship we are getting good response. We have got by this time about one hundred branches all over the world: Europe, America, Australia and Far East, Middle East, India. Everywhere we have got branches, and I am very much obliged to you, to your country, USA. You are mostly cooperating with this movement. All my students, boys and girls, they are mostly American young boys and girls. There are others also, but you are predominant; therefore I must thank you very much.
So you are very prominent country all over the world, America. You have got your prestige as the richest nation. Not only that: you are advanced in economic development, scientific development. There is unity with you on account of your benevolent activities, that you are forward in supplying foodstuff to the undeveloped countries. You supply money also for development. You have got very philanthropic works, and your country is respected all over the world.
But one thing you should know, that at the present moment we are united chronologically, historically, by economic development, by scientific advancement, but still we are fighting one another. In spite of our willingness to cooperate, there is fighting. Just in today's paper I was reading that there is some indication that Mr. Nixon, your President, has declared something that is very agitative.
So the point is that in spite of educational advancement, in spite of economic development, in spite of historical oneness, why we are fighting with one another? That is the question. That answer is given in the Vedic literature. What is that?
- yasyātma-buddhiḥ kuṇape tri-dhātuke
- sva-dhīḥ kalatrādiṣu bhauma ijya-dhīḥ
- yat-tīrtha-buddhiḥ salile na karhicij
- janeṣv abhijñeṣu sa eva go-kharaḥ
- (SB 10.84.13)
Go-kharaḥ. Go-kharaḥ means…, go means cows, and kharaḥ means asses. So persons who are identifying this body as self: ātma-buddhiḥ kuṇape tri-dhātuke.
This body is a bag made of bones, fleshes, blood, urine, stool, muscles and so many things, veins, so many things. It is a lump of matter. It is big machine, very complicated machine, but we have taken that it is a bag of complicated machine. It is a bag, just like you carry sometimes bag. Actually it is a bag, but unfortunately we have identified ourself with this bag. The bag you keep something, but this something is not the bag.
Similarly I, you or every one of us, we are now encaged with this bag.
- dehino 'smin yathā dehe
- kaumāraṁ yauvanaṁ jarā
- (BG 2.13)
This education was given by Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, in the Bhagavad-gītā to Arjuna, when Arjuna was identifying himself with this body. There was a war between two sections of cousin-brothers. So when Arjuna, he was one side, and his cousin-brother was another side, so Arjuna actually came into the battlefield. He said to Kṛṣṇa—Kṛṣṇa was driving his chariot—"My dear Kṛṣṇa, I don't like this war, because the other side, they are all my family members. So I do not want to kill them." That was his problem.
But the fighting was necessary, for some reason, that was... Just like sometimes fighting is necessary. Not that fighting you can abolish. It is not possible; sometimes it is necessary. Not always; but not for any unreasonable subject matter. This fighting was there when there was no other way than to fight. Anyway, in that fighting, he was not willing to fight, although Kṛṣṇa wanted him to fight. So at that time he was given instruction on this Bhagavad-gītā.
So he was to first understand that this body, we are not this body; we are different from this body. So the first instruction He gave, that,
- dehino 'smin yathā dehe
- kaumāraṁ yauvanaṁ jarā
- tathā dehāntara-prāptir
- dhīras tatra na muhyati
- (BG 2.13)
This is very instructive verse, try to understand, that within this body there is the soul. The body is called, in Sanskrit language, it is called deha, and the soul which possesses this body... Just like I am possessing this body, you are possessing your body, we are all individual persons, soul. You have got your body, I have got my body, another has got his body. In this way we have got different body.
So we must understand this is the platform of cultural unity, when you understand that "I am not this body." We have unity, economic unity, historical unity, scientific unity. But still we are fighting one another, nation to nation, person to person, individual to individual. There is no unity. That is, the only cause is that they do not know that we are not this body.
That… We are spreading Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement for understanding this simple philosophy, that we are not this body. We have to rectify, or purify, this knowledge that "I am this body." That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. It is very simple. Just like in our Society, the International Society for Krishna Consciousness, we are many persons from many countries. Some of them are from India, some of them from America, some of them from Africa, some of them from other countries, Japan. We are various countrymen combined together, but you will find that every one of us not conscious of this body; otherwise we could not work so unitedly.
We are conscious that "I am not this body." This is Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. Otherwise, how we could accommodate Indians, Africans, Americans, others; they are chanting, they are dancing, they are eating. They have forgotten. They have forgotten that one is black, one is white, one is yellow, one is red or one is this or that. The bodily concept they have forgotten, which is practical you can see.
So this is possible. If it is possible for a small number of groups, say societies or clan or anything, it is possible to spread all over the world. So that cultural unity we are seeking: that we are one spirit soul, ahaṁ brahmāsmi. This Vedic language is called, when we understand that I am not this body, I am spirit soul, ahaṁ brahmāsmi. This is called purification.
At the time being, my consciousness is not purified; it is polluted, because I am thinking "I am Indian," you are thinking "American," other is thinking "I am Christian," another is thinking that "I am Hindu," other is thinking "I am Muslim," other is thinking "I am Christian"; one is thinking "I am man," another is thinking "I am dog," "I am cat"—so many consciousness, and they are fighting with one another, due to different consciousness. But if we really come to the platform of spiritual consciousness, or Kṛṣṇa consciousness, then we become immediately one. Oneness.
So Kṛṣṇa is saying that dehino 'smin yathā dehe kaumāraṁ yauvanaṁ jarā (BG 2.13). Very simple philosophy. Dehe, the possessor of the body, is within this body, just like you are within this room or within your country or within the sky. Within. Similarly ultimately I, you, all of us within this body. And how you can perceive? You can perceive very easily: that you can remember that you were a child. At that time you can remember what you were doing. Now you are existing, you remember that you had a body, child's body, like this, but that body has gone. But you are still there, here. It is not difficult to understand.
I am old man. I can understand, I can remember when I was a baby, six months old, I still remember that I was lying down on my sister's, elder sister's lap, and she was knitting wool, I was sitting. I remember. Similarly, when I was only one year old there was a big saṅkīrtan party, and I also joined, and I was simply seeing the lower portion of the leg. I can still remember. So my body was so small. You see? So many things I can remember in my childhood, in my youthhood, in my family life—I was a family man, of course—and so I remember. Now I am old man. Now just think over where those bodies have gone.
You may say the body has grown up, either grown up or changed; that my body, childhood body, my babyhood body, my youthhood body are no longer existing. That is a fact. But still I am existing in a different body. Similarly Kṛṣṇa says to Arjuna, tathā dehāntara-prāptir. Tathā: as I have passed through so many bodies, those bodies are no longer existing, but I am still existing. I am remembering. Similarly, when this body will be finished, this old body, I must accept another body. This is the real science.
Unfortunately there is no educational department, there is no scientific department in any university throughout the whole world where this lesson is taught. I have been in Moscow. I have talked with a big professor, very learned professor, and he also said that "After finishing this body, there will be nothing." This is ignorance. Actually that is not a fact. The fact is tathā dehāntara-prāptir. You are, after death, after finishing this body, you get another body: tathā dehāntaram-prāptir. Antaram means another.
Now there are varieties of body. That you can see. There are fish bodies, there are tree bodies, plant bodies, beasts' bodies, birds' bodies, insect bodies, reptile bodies. In this way, gradual process of evolution, it comes to this human body. The soul is passing through so many different types of body. The Darwin's theory of evolution is little idea. It is proved it is not a fact. But actual fact is, as it is stated, dehāntaram-prāptir. The soul is one, but it is transmigrating from one body to another. This is the fact.
Now you try to understand, you apply your arguments, reason, logic, whatever you can. You will find, "Yes, I was a child, so that body is no longer existing; I am existing." So therefore the conclusion is—we must conclude logically—"This body may be finished, but I will exist." That is the eternity of the soul.
So, so far our constitutional position is, we learn from Bhagavad-gītā that this distinction is there, that "I am the soul, and my body is the matter." The soul's definition(?) is also given here: antavanta ime dehā nityasyoktāḥ śarīriṇaḥ (BG 2.18). This body is to be ended, but I am not to be ended. Nityasyoktāḥ śarīriṇaḥ. Śarīriṇaḥ means one who possesses. He is nitya. In the Vedic literature, about the soul it is said,
- nityo nityānāṁ cetanaś cetanānām
- eko bahūnāṁ yo vidadhāti kāmān
- (Kaṭha Upaniṣad 2.2.13)
I am citing Sanskrit verses from Vedic literature, because according to our concept of civilization we take Vedic hymns or Vedic versions as absolute truth, without any mistakes, without any cheating. The conditioned soul... Conditioned soul—one who is not liberated, one who is under the stringent laws of material nature; he is called conditioned soul—he cannot give us perfect knowledge, conditioned soul. Those conditioned souls means one who is identifying with this body, he is called conditioned soul. He is under the condition of this material nature, prakṛti. So such persons cannot be perfect.
For example the four kinds of defects, that every one of us, we commit mistakes. "To error is human." That is a fact. Everyone will admit. Yes. Nobody can say that "I never committed any mistake." Nobody can say. That is not possible. So long we have got this bodily concept of life, this is mistake. This bodily concept of life itself is mistake. I am not this body, but I am thinking I am this body. Actually I am not this body, but still I am thinking, "I am Indian," you are thinking you are American. This is mistake. The beginning is mistake.
So if you can commit mistake, how you can give perfect knowledge? Knowledge means must be perfect, without any mistake, without any illusion. Illusion..., illusion means to accept something for something, the same mistake. And then our imperfectness of the senses: we acquire knowledge, we gather knowledge by perception of this our material senses, but our material senses are imperfect. Just like we are very much proud of our eyes, so I can see under certain condition if there is... Just like if it is not fully lighted, I cannot see who was standing behind, but if there is sufficient light, I can see. Therefore my seeing power is dependent on the varieties of light.
So how you can say that whatever you see, it is perfect? I am seeing now things under certain condition; next moment I will see things under certain other condition. So as the condition changes, therefore my sight also changes in different ways. We have got different senses: our touch, our smell, so many things. All our senses are working under incompetency. Incompetency. So persons who have got incompetent senses, who is liable to commit mistake, who is illusioned, whatever knowledge he is giving that is cheating, because he has no perfect knowledge. So how we can accept knowledge from a person who is liable to so many defects of māyā? Try to understand.
Therefore our process of knowledge is not speculation. What we shall do by speculation? Because my mind, my senses, everything imperfect, so how can I have perfect knowledge? So this is not the process of acquiring right knowledge. Our process of acquiring knowledge: to hear from the right. So any, that is the system of Vedic civilization, that anything which is described in the Vedas, that is real proof, that is real knowledge.
So our propaganda, this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, is that you take knowledge from Kṛṣṇa directly. He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Even if we do not accept Kṛṣṇa as the Supreme Personality of Godhead the Kṛṣṇa's book, Bhagavad-gītā, it is very, very widely read all over the world by philosophers, by scholars, by religionists, by general public.
There are so many editions of Bhagavad-gītā, perhaps you know? So our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is to request you to read this Bhagavad-gītā as it is. Do not try to comment upon it indigenally(?). Same way, therefore we are publishing Bhagavad-gītā as it is, without any imperfect comment. As it is.
Just like Kṛṣṇa says here:
- dehino 'smin yathā dehe
- kaumāraṁ yauvanaṁ jarā
- tathā dehāntaram-prāptir
- dhīras tatra na muhyati
- (BG 2.13)
The soul is within this body. He is transmigrating from one type of body to another. This is fact. If we ponder over it, we shall find it is fact. So we take it as it is. That is our method of knowledge. Very simple. We simplify the matter. Now if you want to research scientifically... Actually they are researching, but they could not find, the medical science, they are..., a dead man or a man who is going to die, he is given all kinds of injections, all kinds of gas, and taking all care. In spite of all that, everything, oh, the man is dead, finished.
Now ask them what is finished, they cannot say. They say, "Yes, we do not know what is finished." You cannot say that this blood has turned from redness to whiteness. Therefore it is known—you are scientifically advanced—you can turn the blood into red, eh? Not that. The redness is not life, because there are so many red naturals, just like a flower, a red flower, it is..., is not living. It has no life. The redness, you cannot put this logic, that redness, red corpuscle is the source of life.
You cannot say that this dead body is there because some chemical is missing. That also you cannot say, because that chemical, if you say that there is chemical which is giving life, that chemical is already there, because after a few minutes you will find that as soon as the body is decomposed, many living entities are coming out. So the life-giving chemical is there. You cannot say that the chemical is wanting. Or if you say the chemical is wanting, then bring that chemical, put it into it, and make it alive. That is not possible.
So we cannot accept this defective knowledge. Our knowledge is from Kṛṣṇa. We accept that this body is dead because the soul has passed to another body. This is perfect knowledge. Now when you come to this knowledge perfectly, that "I not this body; I am soul," that is called brahma-bhūta stage, ahaṁ brahmāsmi, Brahman realization or spiritual realization. This is Vedic civilization: to give chance everyone how to realize that Brahman, athāto brahma jijñāsā, the Vedānta, the Vedānta philosophy.
The first aphorism of the Vedānta philosophy is ordered "Now, in this human form of life, you have to enquire about that Brahman, spirit." That is your only business. Don't bother about so-called economic development, because by God's arrangement everything is there. I have repeatedly said that there are 8,400,000 species of life. Out of that, human form of life are 400..., 400,000. The 8,000,000, out of this 400,000 species of life, there are a few civilized; otherwise there are so many non-civilized. They live in the jungles; they do not care for any civilization. But the problem is only for this civilized class of men. Others, they are living on nature.
The bird, rising early in the morning, he has no economic problem. Immediately he flies anywhere—in some tree there is some fruit; he eats. His eating problem is solved. Then after eating, sleeping, sleeping problem, so anywhere on the top of the tree he sleeps very nicely, sleeping problem. Then mating, sex intercourse. Every bird is born with another male and female. So these are not problems practically. But actually we have given up the real problem to understand what is Brahman, what is soul. We are entrapped, involved in so many problems of so-called eating, sleeping, mating and defense.
So this kind of civilization is not very correct. You try to understand. The real civilization is to know oneself, "What I am? Am I this body or something else?" That is real civilization. For this purpose there must be university; for this purpose there must be educational institution. Other purposes, they are automatically served by nature's arrangement, as I just a few minutes (ago) recited one verse from Vedas:
- nityo nityānāṁ cetanaś cetanānām
- eko bahūnāṁ yo vidadhāti kāmān
- (Kaṭha Upaniṣad 2.2.13)
Just like in your family the father, the father is engaged to feed the children. The children has no anxiety. Similarly, there is Supreme Father. That also you accept, those who are Christians; they go to church, they say, "My Father, give us our daily bread." That's nice, there is Supreme Father. So Father has arranged for everyone. Now our only business is to know the Father, what kind of Father: Ah, what is His form? What is His qualities? How He is conducting the whole management, cosmic manifestation? What is my relationship with Him?
Of course, relationship we accept, but those who do not accept, actually the relationship is already known, that He is Supreme Father. But if you..., does not want to accept, he must accept that somebody is there controller. That you have to accept. You cannot say that you are uncontrolled and fully independent. That is not possible. We are dependent. There is controller. Now we have to understand what is that controller, Supreme Controller.
Here also we have controller. Just like your government, everyone's government, every state's government, that is controller. You cannot do anything in defiance of the government laws. That is not possible. Similarly, there is a Supreme Controller. Here we can experience. Just like I am. I am controlling some of my students, but when I enter in your country I am controlled by the Immigration Department. Not that freely I can enter in your country. So I cannot say that I am not controlled. Or similarly, if you want to go my country, you have to go under some control.—the visa, the passport.
So nobody can say that "I am not controlled." Everyone is controlled. That is a fact. Now everyone is controlled; at the same time he is controller, just like a person when he goes to work in some establishment, his boss or the master, there is a proprietor of the firm, he is the controller of that man. But when he comes back to his home, he is controller of his wife, children or family.
So here we find in this material world, go any man, take any man, just like your President Nixon. He is controlling the government, but he is also controlled by public opinion. So nobody can say that "I am Supreme Controller." Nobody can say. He is simultaneously a controller and controlled. Nobody can say that "I am fully controller; I am not controlled." Nobody can say. But there is a person who is controller, but not controlled by anyone—that is God.
So this is the conception of God. God means He is controller only, but He is not controlled. So if you find out somebody that He is not controlled but He is controller only, that is God. Simple definition of God. Now the Vedic śastra, the Vedic knowledge, the sound, that controller, what is that controller? Kṛṣṇa.
- īśvaraḥ paramaḥ kṛṣṇaḥ
- anādir ādir govindaḥ
- (Bs. 5.1)
By research work, by great sages... You know in India still, there are many saintly persons, sages, they are simply interested with the Supreme Controller. So by their research work they have found out the Supreme Person who is simply controller but He is never controlled by anyone. That is Kṛṣṇa.
So we are spreading that Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement to let you know the Supreme Controller and how He is controlling. These things are preliminary discussed in this Bhagavad-gītā. So our movement is to preach the Bhagavad-gītā as it is and to bring the Supreme Controller before you, and to carry out the order of the Supreme Controller. The Supreme Controller's order is, sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁśaraṇaṁ vraja (BG 18.66): "You simply surrender unto Me, I take charge of you."
So if you kindly follow our instruction, our philosophy, and if you surrender yourself to Kṛṣṇa, your life will be happy. Thank you very much.
(kīrtana) (prema-dhvani) (break) (end)