Collaborate with us to invoke and fully manifest Srila Prabhupada's Vani-presence.
720927 - Lecture SB 01.03.22 - Los Angeles
Prabhupāda: (leads singing of Jaya Rādhā-Mādhava) (prema-dhvani) Thank you very much.
Devotees: All glories to Śrīla Prabhupāda. (devotees offer obeisances) (break)
Pradyumna: Oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya. Oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya. Oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya.
Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, Canto One, Chapter 3, text 22. (leads chanting of verse) (Prabhupāda and devotees repeat)
- nara-devatvam āpannaḥ
- cakre vīryāṇy ataḥ param
- (SB 1.3.22)
Prabhupāda: That's all right. Ladies? (ladies chant) That's all right. Now, word meaning.
Pradyumna: (leads chanting of synonyms)
nara—human being; devatvam—divinity; āpannaḥ—having assumed the form of; sura—the demigods; kārya—activities; cikīrṣayā—for the purpose of performing; samudra—the Indian Ocean; nigraha-ādīni—controlling, etc.; cakre—did perform; vīryāṇi—superhuman prowess; ataḥ param—thereafter.
Translation: "In the eighteenth incarnation, the Lord appeared as King Rāma. In order to perform some pleasing work for the demigods, He exhibited superhuman powers by controlling the Indian Ocean and then killing the atheist King Rāvaṇa, who was on the other side of the sea."
Prabhupāda: So, Kṛṣṇa says in the Bhagavad-gītā, paritrāṇāya sādhūnāṁ vināśāya ca duṣkṛtām (BG 4.8). To kill the miscreants and to protect the devotees, He descends. That is avatāra. They have two business. Not that avatāra means keeping some long beard or having an artificial helmet. Rascals may be allured by them, but those who are sensible, who have got sense, they will see with reference to the śāstra, the avatāra, every avatāra... We are reading so many avatāras. The activity of that particular avatāra is also mentioned, that "This avatāra will..., incarnation will appear accepting such and such person as father and mother, and His activities will be like this."
So how any rascal can come out and say, "I am the avatāra. I am the incarnation"? So that some other rascals may believe, but those who have sense, they will not accept. Here it is clearly mentioned, Lord Rāmacandra. He appeared just like ordinary human being. Nara-devatvam āpannaḥ, accepted. There were many other kings as good as Lord Rāmacandra, but why people are after Rāmacandra? Because He is God. Unfortunately, there are so many rascals, they pose themselves as incarnation of Rāma, incarna..., Kṛṣṇa. And people are all foolish śūdras, no education, no knowledge, and they are accepting.
So Lord Rāmacandra appeared for the purpose of satisfying the sura. Kṛṣṇa appears for protection of the sura. Sura and asura. Asura means nondevotees, and sura means devotee. So for killing the asuras, Kṛṣṇa does not require to come down. Any agent. There are... Parāsya śaktir vividhaiva śrūyate (Śvetāśvatara Upaniṣad 6.8, CC Madhya 13.65, purport). By simply advising the king of heaven, Indra, to send a strong wind, so many asuras can be immediately annihilated. So for that purpose Kṛṣṇa does not require to come. He comes for satisfying the devotees. The devotees are so anxious to see Him.
Just like Prahlāda Mahārāja. Nṛsiṁha-deva appeared not to kill his teeny father. To kill his teeny father... Simply by directing the māyā, he could be killed. But He wanted to come before Prahlāda Mahārāja, that "You are My such nice devotee. You are suffering for Me. Now I have come. You see." This is the purpose. By the by, to kill the atheist, keeping the promise of Brahmā intact... He took benediction from Brahmā that "I shall not die in this way and this way, this way." All the promises of Brahmā kept. He appeared in such a form that it will not clash with the promise of Brahmā. Therefore He had to take the form of such a thing which does not clash with the promise.
Brahmā was a devotee. He has given him some benediction. So Kṛṣṇa did not violate that. It must be kept. Kaunteya pratijānīhi na me bhaktaḥ praṇaśyati (BG 9.31). Just see kindness of Kṛṣṇa. He kept Brahmā's promise, He kept the atheist Hiraṇyakaśipu's aspiration, and He satisfied Prahlāda. And everything was done simply by incarnating as Narasiṁhadeva. This is Kṛṣṇa's plan. He comes, but by one stroke, He serves so many business. That is Kṛṣṇa.
So here is also, Lord Rāmacandra appeared. The main business was to kill Rāvaṇa. Not main business. Main business is to satisfy the devotee; side by side, to kill Rāvaṇa. And Rāvaṇa was on the other side of Indian Ocean. So Hanumān, a devotee of Rāmacandra, he jumped over the ocean simply by chanting, "Jaya Rāma." You see? But Rāmacandra thought Himself that He is unable to jump over. He had to construct a bridge. You see? But what kind of bridge? Bridge, a stone bridge that was floating on the sea. The law of gravitation did not work.
That is God. He can nullify any law. He can introduce any new law. And nobody has got experience that stone thrown on the water floating. No one has got... Naturally, it goes down. But this is God, that He nullifies the general law, as He desires. Sarva-śakti-sampannaḥ. That is all-powerful. That is greatness. Not that if you have got a small body and the elephant has got a very big body, therefore he is great. No. That is not greatness. The elephant, in spite of having such a big body and thousand times stronger than the human being, he is controlled by a small human being.
That means intelligence is strength, not this bodily. Buddhir yasya balaṁ tasya (Hitopadeśa). Anyone who has got intelligence, he has got strength. Just like by intelligence, they have discovered the nuclear weapon. By dropping a nuclear weapon, hundreds and thousands of soldiers can be killed. There is no more need of maintaining a huge army. So many men now released. Those who have got atomic bomb... At least, I know in Russia, they know that "We have got atomic bomb. What is the use of maintaining such a huge army? Let them work for other production."
So it is intelligence, that work. So how much intelligence has got God, we can imagine. If we, our teeny brain, we are so intelligent... But unfortunately the rogues, having got a brain from God, they are denying God. Just see. The rascal does not consider that "I am working with my brain. That's nice. I have got a very good brain." Su-medhasaḥ. "But who has manufactured this brain?" You manufacture this brain. That you cannot. So the brain is important or the manufacturer of the brain is important? Who is important? This is intelligence.
So we are not after the so-called big brain. We give them all respect, but we are after the manufacturer of the brain. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. He can manufacture thousands and millions of brains like that, like Professor Einstein or anyone. That is God.
So God is great. We have to understand how great He is. Not that simply sophistically, "God is great, and I do everything. God cannot see. Let me commit all kinds of sin." But God is great; He will see. "No, no, God cannot see. I can cheat God, although He is great." That is our philosophy. "God is great, but I am so great that I can cheat God," that is Hiraṇyakaśipu's philosophy. But He proved, God proved, "Yes, you have cheated Brahmā in so many ways with the idea that you will live forever. Now see. I am here. How great I am." So that is the appreciation of the greatness of God. If we read śāstras and see scrutinizingly, we can understand, "Yes, God is great." Not theoretically. Practically we can see how God is great.
Read the purport.
Pradyumna: "The Personality of Godhead, Śrī Rāma, assumed the form of a human being and appeared on the earth for the purpose of doing some pleasing work for the demigods, or the administrative personalities to maintain the order of the universe. Sometimes great demons and atheists like Rāvaṇa and Hiraṇyakaśipu and many others become very famous due to advancing material civilization by the help of material science and other activities with a spirit of challenging the established order of the Lord. For example, the attempt to fly to other planets by material means is a challenge to the established order.
"The conditions of each and every planet are different, and different classes of human beings are accommodated there for particular purposes mentioned in the codes of the Lord. But puffed up by tiny success in material advancement, sometimes the godless materialist challenges the existence of God. Rāvaṇa was one of them, and he wanted to deport ordinary men to the planets of Indra, or heaven, by material means, without consideration of the necessary qualifications. He wanted a staircase to be..."
Prabhupāda: Just now they are planning that everyone will go to the moon planet, without any qualification. That is their plan. It is Rāvaṇa's plan. Rāvaṇa said that "Why you are undergoing so much severe austerities to go to heaven? I shall make a staircase, and you go directly, without having performed any austerities."
So to go to the moon planet, according to the Vedic description, it requires a qualification. The moon planet, that is one of the heavenly planets, and if anyone can go there, he gets ten thousands of years span of life. And the standard of living is very higher than this planet. These are the description in the Vedic literature.
In the Bhagavad-gītā also it is said, yānti deva-vratā devān (BG 9.25). If you want to be promoted to a heavenly planets, then you just perform the duties to please the particular demigod, you'll be... So these materialist scientists, they are thinking that they can go anywhere by the force of their so-called scientific advancement. But it has not proved successful till now. But still, they will say, "Yes, in future we shall go." All right, in future. "Trust no future, however pleasant." That's all.
Pradyumna: "He wanted a staircase to be built up directly reaching the heavenly planet so that people might not be required to undergo the routine of pious work necessary to enter that planet. He also wanted to perform other acts against the established rule of the Lord. He even challenged the authority of Śrī Rāma, the Personality of Godhead, and kidnapped His wife, Sītā. Of course, Lord Rāma came to chastise the atheist, answering the prayer and desire of the demigods. He therefore took up the challenge of Rāvaṇa, and the complete activity is the subject matter of the Rāmāyaṇa.
"Because Lord Rāmacandra was the Personality of Godhead, He exhibited superhuman activities which no human being, including the materially advanced Rāvaṇa, could perform. Lord Rāmacandra prepared a royal road on the Indian Ocean with stones that floated on the water. The modern scientists have done research in the area of weightlessness, but it is not possible to bring in weightlessness anywhere and everywhere.
"But because weightlessness is the creation of the Lord by which He can make the gigantic planets fly and float in the air, He made the stones even within this earth to be weightless, and prepared a stone bridge on the sea without any supporting pillar. That is the display of the power of God."
Prabhupāda: So incarnation, in the śāstras... Here in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, some of the incarnations are described. But all incarnations are described in the śāstras. We should not be blind to accept any rascal and rogue as incarnation of God. Incarnation of God is not so cheap. That we should understand.
Devotees: All glories to Śrīla Prabhupāda. (obeisances) (end)