Collaborate with us to invoke and fully manifest Srila Prabhupada's Vani-presence.
740626 - Lecture SB 02.01.01-5 - Melbourne
Prabhupāda: Oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya. Oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya. (devotees repeat) (leads chanting of verses)
- varīyān eṣa te praśnaḥ
- kṛto loka-hitaṁ nṛpa
- ātmavit-sammataḥ puṁsāṁ
- śrotavyādiṣu yaḥ paraḥ
- (SB 2.1.1)
- śrotavyādīni rājendra
- nṛṇāṁ santi sahasraśaḥ
- apaśyatām ātma-tattvaṁ
- gṛheṣu gṛha-medhinām
- (SB 2.1.2)
- nidrayā hṛiyate naktaṁ
- vyavāyena ca vā vayaḥ
- divā cārthehayā rājan
- kuṭumba-bharaṇena vā
- (SB 2.1.3)
- ātma-sainyeṣv asatsv api
- teṣāṁ pramatto nidhanaṁ
- paśyann api na paśyati
- (SB 2.1.4)
- tasmād bhārata sarvātmā
- bhagavān īśvaro hariḥ
- śrotavyaḥ kīrtitavyaś ca
- smartavyaś cecchatābhayam
- (SB 2.1.5)
- varīyān eṣa te praśnaḥ
- kṛto loka-hitaṁ nṛpa
- ātmavit-sammataḥ puṁsāṁ
- śrotavyādiṣu yaḥ paraḥ
- (SB 2.1.1)
(aside:) Give me water.
Śukadeva Gosvāmī, śrī-śuka uvāca, Śukadeva Gosvāmī, the accepted spiritual master of King Parīkṣit, is replying to his inquiry, "What is the duty of a person who is going to die?" Parīkṣit Mahārāja was going to die within seven days. He was cursed by a brāhmaṇa boy to die within seven days. The reason is that the king was in the forest, engaged in hunting, and when he became tired he went to the cottage of a sage and asked him for water. But the sage was absorbed in meditation, could not hear him. So Parīkṣit Mahārāja, being thirsty, became angry, and there was a dead snake. So he, out of negligence, he took the dead snake and wrapped over the neck of the meditating sage. This news was spread, and his son, twelve years old only, he heard that his father was insulted. So immediately he cursed that this snake would bite him within seven days. So this news was brought, although the father, after his meditation was over, he was very sorry that such a great king has been cursed. So he was very, very sorry, but what can be done? The brāhmaṇa boy's curse must be effective. That because in those days brāhmaṇas, even by caste, was very, very strong in spiritual strength. So when Parīkṣit Mahārāja was informed that he was to die within seven days, he accepted the curse: "Yes, I was wrong to insult the sage." Otherwise, he could counteract; he was also very powerful. But he did not. So this is the history.
So immediately he left his kingdom, family, children, and went to the bank of the Ganges and sat down there, being prepared for the coming imminent death within seven days. So because he was emperor of the world... So he was going to die. This news was spread, and all big, big men, great saintly persons, even demigods, they also came to see him. And he was asking everyone, "What is my duty?" So at that time Śukadeva Gosvāmī also arrived there. Śukadeva Gosvāmī was young boy, but paramahaṁsa. So he was received in that big assembly as the great personality of knowledge. Even his father, Vyāsadeva, was present. So everyone stood up. His father also stood up to receive him, he was such a great personality. And then he was given nice seat, as is the custom, to give advice to Mahārāja Parīkṣit: "What was my duty?" But Parīkṣit Mahārāja was, from the beginning of his life, was a devotee himself, a devotee of Lord Kṛṣṇa. And he inquired, "Whether I shall devote or I shall absorb my mind with Kṛṣṇa consciousness?" because he was a devotee of Kṛṣṇa. Many people gathered. They gave different advices: "Mahārāja, you do this at the time of death," and "Do that," "Do this." So there were many big, big persons. He was perplexed. But he was a devotee of Kṛṣṇa from the very beginning of his life, and thus he enquired, "Whether it is better to absorb the mind in Kṛṣṇa consciousness?" This was his question.
So in answer to his question, Śukadeva Gosvāmī replied, varīyān eṣa te praśnaḥ (SB 2.1.1): "My dear King..." Varīyān eṣa te praśnaḥ kṛto loka-hitaṁ nṛpa. Nṛpa, "the king," address. "My dear King, your inquiry is very glorified," varīyān eṣa te praśnaḥ kṛto loka-hitam, "because on account of this question, whatever I shall reply..." Means he knew. The reply is this Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. Question was about Kṛṣṇa, and the reply is Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, eighteen thousand verses. And each and every verse is so important that if a serious student studies each and every verse, each verse will take at least one month to understand. And there are eighteen thousand verses, so for serious study of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, it will take eighteen thousand months. So eighteen thousand months meaning how many years? One thousand five hundred years. (laughter) It is such an important book, Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. Each verse is a new verse, not repetition of the same subject. And it is deeply thoughtful. And every verse is, as it is stated here, ātmavit-sammataḥ, approved by persons who are self-realized. Ātmavit. Ātmavit. Ātmā means self, and vit means one who knows, well aware of self-realization. They are called ātmavit.
Generally people are anātmavit, bodily conscious, mass of people or class of people also. Hardly you will find a person at the present moment ātmavit, self-realized. Everyone is: "I am this body." "I am Indian," "I am American," "I am Canadian," "I am Australian," "I am white," "I am black," "I am brāhmaṇa," "I am śūdra," this way—"I am this body." Ātmavit means "I am the self; I am the soul." Ahaṁ brahmāsmi. This is the Vedic word. If one understands that "I am not this body; I am spirit soul," he is called ātmavit, or he is liberated. He is not bodily conscious platform. There are three platforms of identification with self. Those who are grossly in ignorance, exactly like animals... Just like a dog. A dog thinks that he is the body. He cannot think that he is not the body, he is the soul. That is not possible. Because he is born in such a body, he is entrapped in such a body, animal body; they cannot think that the animal, the cat and dog, is different from the body. But at the present moment, so many big, big scholars and professors and educationists, they are also the same category as the dog. As the dog is thinking, "I am this body," he is also thinking, "I am this body." And on this bodily concept there are so many nations, big, big nation, they are on the bodily concept of life. Not ātmavit. Ātmavit is different, that "I am not this body; I am soul," ahaṁ brahmāsmi
So kṛṣṇa-praśna, inquiry about Kṛṣṇa, and to understand Kṛṣṇa means on the spiritual platform, ātmavit. That is not material body, er, material platform. Material platform means "I am this body; you are this body. So Kṛṣṇa is also like us. Kṛṣṇa has a material body, and He is like me." Avajānanti māṁ mūḍhāḥ (BG 9.11). Kṛṣṇa should not be considered as ordinary being. We are worshiping Kṛṣṇa in this temple, not an ordinary human being. But Kṛṣṇa is so kind. He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Aṇor aṇīyān mahato mahīyān (Kaṭha Upaniṣad 1.2.20). He is greater than the greatest, and still, He can become smaller than the smallest. That is His greatness. He can become... He can show Arjuna the virāta-rūpa, the universal form; at the same time, He can talk with Arjuna as ordinary friend. This is Kṛṣṇa. You have read Bhagavad-gītā. He was talking on the chariot as His friend, but when there was need, He... Arjuna wanted to see the universal form, and Kṛṣṇa showed him that universal form, gigantic form, everything including. So that Kṛṣṇa is ātmā, Paramātmā, and Bhagavān and Brahman. Brahmeti paramātmeti bhagavān iti śabdyate (SB 1.2.11).
So kṛṣṇa-praśna means all-including, everything—past, present, future, moving, not moving, and big and small. This is Kṛṣṇa understanding. Kṛṣṇa understanding means past, present, future, small, large, moving, not moving. This is Kṛṣṇa understanding. But everything is in either of these categories. Everything must be either in the past or at present or in future. So this is past, present and future. And there are moving and... Just like we. We are, animals or man or birds and beasts and insect or aquatics, we are moving. And there are not moving, just like the hill, stones, the trees, plants, the grass. They do not move. But we are moving. So moving, unmoving. And we exist past, present, future. And there is biggest, bigger than the biggest, the whole universe. Although you have got airships, you cannot go, neither others. So many machines have been discovered, but go and see the... They cannot go even to the moon planet, what to speak of others. Therefore it is very big for us. When we speak of universe, we cannot think of. They simply calculate, the scientists, by light-year and this year, that year, the speed. But we cannot approach even in this material world, and what to speak of Kṛṣṇa? Kṛṣṇa is in the spiritual world. We cannot calculate the length and breadth of this material world, our knowledge is so imperfect and meager, and what we can understand of the spiritual world? The material world is a manifestation of Kṛṣṇa's one-fourth energy. And the three-fourth energy is manifested in the spiritual world. This is the understanding of Kṛṣṇa.
Therefore when one inquires about Kṛṣṇa, he is very glorified. Therefore he says, varīyān eṣa te praśnaḥ. Varīyān eṣa te praśnaḥ kṛto loka-hitam (SB 2.1.1). Because answer to this question will include everything, and people will profit there, loka-hitam. The saintly person duty is to do welfare to the people in general. That is saintly person. Lokānāṁ hita-kāriṇau tri-bhuvane mānyau śaraṇyākarau. About the Gosvāmīs, ṣaḍ-gosvāmī, it is stated that nānā-śāstra-vicāraṇaika-nipuṇau. The six Gosvāmīs, they were very, very learned scholars, nānā-śāstra, various different scriptures, vicāraṇaika-nipuṇau, very expert in studying all the scriptures scrutinizingly, nipuṇau, expert. This is the, I mean to say, calculation of the Gosvāmīs. So why they are concerned about studying so many scriptures? Now, sad-dharma-vicāraṇa. Nānā-śāstra-vicāraṇaika-nipuṇau sad-dharma-saṁsthāpakau. Sad-dharma. Dharma means... The exact meaning of dharma is "occupational duty." People are... In English they translate dharma as "faith." Faith can be changed. I like this faith today; tomorrow I may like another faith. So actually the translation of dharma is not "faith." It is "occupational duty."
So what should be our occupational duty? Sad-dharma. Sad-dharma means... Sat means eternal. Real occupational duty... Now I am working as American, or others working as Indian or German or Englishmen, or this family men. Everyone has got some occupational duty. But this occupational duty... Suppose I am working as American or European or Australian. This is temporary, because this body is temporary. And I am in bodily concept of life, therefore my duty, so-called duty, is also temporary. As soon as the body is finished, I begin another chapter of duty. Suppose this life I am human being; next life I may not be human being. This statement was not liked by the newspaper man. (laughing) He was told that next life you can become animal, so he has published in my name, "The svāmī can become animal." Also the svāmī can become also animal. The so-called svāmī, they will become animal. (laughter) So that is not wrong. But we devotee, we are not afraid of becoming animal. Our only ambition is that we become Kṛṣṇa conscious.
So the animals, the cows and calves, who are Kṛṣṇa conscious... You have seen the picture of Kṛṣṇa? Yes. So better we shall become animal of Kṛṣṇa. So there is nothing wrong. Even if we become an animal of Kṛṣṇa, that is also very worthy. That is not ordinary thing. Kṛṣṇa is embracing. Kṛṣṇa... You see the picture. Kṛṣṇa is embracing. Surabhīr abhipālayantam. Cintāmaṇi-prakara-sadmasu kalpa-vṛkṣa-lakṣāvṛteṣu surabhīr abhipālayantam (Bs. 5.29). Kṛṣṇa always tends the cows. His name is cowherd boy. To become animal of Kṛṣṇa is a great, great fortune. It is not ordinary thing. Any associate of Kṛṣṇa, either His cowherd boyfriends or calf or cow, or the Vṛndāvana trees, plants, flowers or water, they are all devotees of Kṛṣṇa. They like to serve Kṛṣṇa in different capacities. Somebody is serving Kṛṣṇa as animal. Somebody is serving Kṛṣṇa as fruits and flowers, as tree, as Yamunā water, or the beautiful cowherds men and damsels or Kṛṣṇa's father, mother, so many with Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is not imperson. So He has got so many lovers. Kṛṣṇa also loves them. So Kṛṣṇa's another name is paśu-pāla, paśu-pāla-paṅkaja. He is maintainer of the animals. Surabhīr abhipālayantam. He takes pleasure in tending the cows, surabhi. These are surabhi cows, not these ordinary cows. Surabhi cows. Surabhi cows means you can milk the cow as many times as you like and as much milk as you like. That is surabhi.
So therefore Śukadeva Gosvāmī says, "It is glorified question you have inquired about Kṛṣṇa." So about Kṛṣṇa, it is called kṛṣṇa-kathā, topics about Kṛṣṇa. The topics or the instruction given by Kṛṣṇa is the Bhagavad-gītā, and the topics about the activities of Kṛṣṇa is Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. So some way or other, let us always discuss about Kṛṣṇa. That should be the life of Kṛṣṇa conscious people. So this is life of Kṛṣṇa, worshiping Kṛṣṇa in the temple, to sell Kṛṣṇa's books, Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, Bhagavad-gītā, to think of Kṛṣṇa—Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa—to eat kṛṣṇa-prasādam, to take all risk for Kṛṣṇa, to do work for Kṛṣṇa, as Arjuna, to fight for Kṛṣṇa. He did not like to fight, but for Kṛṣṇa's sake he fought. So fight for Kṛṣṇa, work for Kṛṣṇa, think of Kṛṣṇa, eat kṛṣṇa-prasādam, talk of Kṛṣṇa, read for Kṛṣṇa. So Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa. This is life. This is Kṛṣṇa consciousness.
So this is very glorified life. Here it is said that varīyān eṣa te praśnaḥ kṛto loka-hitaṁ nṛpa (SB 2.1.1). So ātmavit-sammataḥ puṁsāṁ śrotavyādiṣu yaḥ paraḥ. Paraḥ means the supreme perfect. You are hearing the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam about Kṛṣṇa. There are many subject matter of hearing. Just like in newspaper you hear so many news. But if you hear something about Kṛṣṇa, that is the only perfect thing. That news has been published in this morning, many papers, "Kṛṣṇa..., the leader of the Kṛṣṇa movement," or "This Kṛṣṇa..., Hare Kṛṣṇa movement." There is some vibration of the word "Kṛṣṇa." That makes the atmosphere purified, surcharged. So many thousands and millions of people will read "Kṛṣṇa." Willing or unwillingly, they'll read "Kṛṣṇa." (laughter) That is their profit. Varīyān eṣa te praśnaḥ, loka-hitam. Immediately, they once utter the word "Kṛṣṇa," they become benefited. Never mind what is the news. Oh, we don't care for that. (laughter) But because they will utter the word "Kṛṣṇa," that is our profit. That is our profit for Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement.
Thank you very much.
Devotees: Jaya Śrīla Prabhupāda.
Prabhupāda: (aside:) There is water? So chant Hare Kṛṣṇa. (break)
Madhudviṣa: More water? (break) ...pertaining to the lecture? Yes, Gopī-kanta?
Gopī-kanta: Śrīla Prabhupāda, what is the exact benefit if a person just takes a Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam on the street and gives some donation to help out the printing costs or whatever?
Prabhupāda: That is already explained. They will read. They will see the picture of Kṛṣṇa. Immediate profit is, they will ask, "What is this picture?" And you will say, "Kṛṣṇa." "Oh," they say, "it is Kṛṣṇa?" Then... (laughter) From the beginning of the, what is called, cover, the benefit begins, because the uttering the word "Kṛṣṇa" is benefit. Then, if he reads... Of course, if he pays for the book, he will read. So you give a chance to the person to know about Kṛṣṇa, their life becomes sublime.
Hari-śauri: Śrīla Prabhupāda, earlier you were speaking that Kṛṣṇa means everything past, present and future and...
Prabhupāda: Everything, whatever you can think of. Kṛṣṇa includes everything. Without Kṛṣṇa, there is nothing. Because... Take anything. Take this table. This is stone. But the stone is also Kṛṣṇa. You have read in the Bhagavad-gītā, bhūmir āpo 'nalo vāyuḥ khaṁ mano buddhir eva ca, bhinnā me prakṛtir aṣṭadhā (BG 7.4). Kṛṣṇa said that "These five gross material elements—earth, water, air, fire, ether—mind, intelligence and ego, they are My separated energy." Just like I am speaking. Now, this speaking recorded, when it will be replayed, the same sound will come. So that is my energy, but separated. I am not there, but still, the vibration is exactly what I am speaking, because these words are emanated from me. Similarly, Kṛṣṇa says that "This earth is emanation of My energy. So therefore this earth... The stone is also earth, another form of earth. Therefore it is manifestation of Kṛṣṇa's energy. Therefore it is Kṛṣṇa. Energy and the energetic—no different. Just like the sun is situated 93,000,000's of miles away from you, but the sunshine, as soon as reaches your body, you understand what is sun—heat and light—immediately. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. When one is learned about Kṛṣṇa, whatever He sees... When he sees the stone, he also sees Kṛṣṇa, immediately remembers the stone is manifestation of the energy of Kṛṣṇa. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Nothing is different from Kṛṣṇa. This is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. When one understands that everything is manifestation of Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa's energy, the... Exactly the same: just like the fire is situated somewhere, but the fire exhibits or demonstrates its energy, the light and heat, although fire is far away, just like the sun is far, far away, but still, by sun's light and heat, he is spread all over the universe. Similarly, Kṛṣṇa, by His two energies, material energy and spiritual energy... That is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā:
- bhūmir āpo 'nalo vāyuḥ
- khaṁ mano buddhir eva ca
- bhinnā prakṛtir aṣṭadhā
- (BG 7.4)
- apareyam itas tv viddhi
- me prakṛtiṁ parām
- jīva-bhūtāṁ mahā-bāho
- yayedaṁ dhāryate jagat
- (BG 7.5)
So there are two energies, exactly like heat and light. One, the spiritual energy, and the other is material energy. The material energy is inferior energy, and the spiritual energy is the superior energy. What is the spiritual energy? Jīva-bhūta, these living entities. The living entity is superior because it is controlling the inferior energy, matter. These are very scientific. It is not sentiment. Everything Kṛṣṇa consciousness is scientific. Simply one requires the brain to understand. Then, when he understands, he will see Kṛṣṇa in everything. That is stated in the Caitanya-caritāmṛta: sthāvara-jaṅgama dekhe nā dekhe tāra mūrti (CC Madhya 8.274). When a devotee, advanced devotee, sees something, he does not see the formation of that thing; he sees the energy. A highly advanced devotee will not see the stone. He immediately will think of Kṛṣṇa, "Oh, Kṛṣṇa is so powerful that His energy is exhibited in stone." Therefore he does not see stone. He sees only Kṛṣṇa. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness, perfection of.
- sthāvara-jaṅgama dekhe nā dekhe tāra mūrti
- sarvatra sphūrta iṣṭa-deva-mūrti
- (CC Madhya 8.274)
Everywhere he sees Kṛṣṇa, nothing but Kṛṣṇa. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness.
Madhudviṣa: Śrīla Prabhupāda, you spoke of inferior energy and superior energy. Those are two general categories. Are there other categories of energy besides that, and specifically how could we understand Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī? Is She...
Prabhupāda: She is spiritual energy.
Madhudviṣa: But is She jīva-bhūta or...
Prabhupāda: No, no, no. She is Kṛṣṇa. If everything is Kṛṣṇa and Rādhārāṇī is not Kṛṣṇa, what is that? Kṛṣṇa. He (She) is Kṛṣṇa. She is the Kṛṣṇa's pleasure potency.
Madhudviṣa: She is not jīva?
Prabhupāda: No, no, no. She is Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa divided Himself into His energy and Himself. That energy, original spiritual energy, is Rādhārāṇī. That is stated by Jīva Gosvāmī. Yes. Rādhā kṛṣṇa-praṇaya-vikṛtir hlādinī śaktir asmāt (CC Adi 1.5). When Kṛṣṇa wants pleasure, He cannot accept the inferior energy. The same superior energy, Kṛṣṇa, is divided into two. That is Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa. And again, They, when They unite, that is Caitanya Mahāprabhu. Divided, They are Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa, and united, Caitanya Mahāprabhu. Śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya rādhā-kṛṣṇa nahe anya (Caitanya Bhāgavata). Anya means "another." So Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya is combination of Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa. And when They are divided into two, that is Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa. This is the purport. Rādhā kṛṣṇa-praṇaya-vikṛtir hlādinī śaktir asmād ekātmānāv api deha-bhedaṁ gatau tau, śrī-caitanyākhyaṁ prakaṭam adhunā tad-dvayaṁ caikyam āptam (CC Adi 1.5). These are the conclusion. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu is Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa combination. But He is playing the part of Rādhārāṇī to understand Kṛṣṇa. This is Caitanya Mahāprabhu.
Madhudviṣa: One more question.
Devotee (1): Śrīla Prabhupāda, if Kṛṣṇa is everywhere, why do we stress the importance of living a very strict life in the temple atmosphere?
Prabhupāda: But have you got the eyes to see Kṛṣṇa everywhere?
Devotee (1): No, Śrīla Prabhupāda.
Prabhupāda: Then you must attention give to temple. When you have got the eyes to see Kṛṣṇa everywhere, you may not require temple worship. But why do you try to imitate that? You have no eyes to see that. Yes.
Devotee (2): Śrīla Prabhupāda, you mentioned three states of identification. One was like the animals. What was the other two?
Prabhupāda: What is that?
Devotee (2): One was to identify with the body as the self, like the animal. And then you mentioned... You said there were three altogether.
Prabhupāda: Oh, yes. Bodily conception, mental conception and spiritual conception. When one is ignorant, he is like animal. When he is farther advanced, he is a philosopher. And when he is farther advanced, he is a devotee. These are the three different stages: like animal, like philosopher and like devotee. So when you think like devotee, that is perfection. And you think that "I am American," "I am Indian"—that is animal. So it is according to the advancement of one's life. There are three stages: animal conception, mental conception and spiritual conception. So spiritual conception is perfect, all-perfect. Hmm. Chant Hare Kṛṣṇa.
Devotees: Jaya. Haribol. (kīrtana) (end)