750520 - Lecture SB 06.01.01-4 - Melbourne
Prabhupāda: (chants verses, devotees chant responsively)
- rāja uvāca
- nivṛtti-mārgaḥ kathita
- ādau bhagavatā yathā
- brahmaṇā yad asaṁsṛtiḥ
- (SB 6.1.1)
- pravṛtti-lakṣaṇaś caiva
- traiguṇya-viṣayo mune
- yo 'sāv alīna-prakṛter
- guṇa-sargaḥ punaḥ punaḥ
- (SB 6.1.2)
- adharma-lakṣanā nānā
- narakāś cānuvarṇitaḥ
- manvantaraś ca vyākhyāta
- ādyaḥ svāyambhuvaḥ yataḥ
- (SB 6.1.3)
- vaṁśas tat-caritāni ca
- (SB 6.1.4)
So yesterday we talked about Parīkṣit Mahārāja. So he was cursed by a brāhmaṇa boy, so he prepared himself for death. What was the preparation? That he left immediately his kingdom, and the kingdom was divided among his sons. He was young man, not very old, but he understood, "Now, within seven days, I will have to die." So immediately he left home and went to the bank of the Ganges. He was situated. . . His capital was what is now called New Delhi. Formerly it was known as Hastināpura. The another name of Hastinā. . . New Delhi, is there still, and there is a very, very old fort. They say that this fort belonged to the Pāṇḍavas, Mahārāja Parīkṣit. They are keeping, just like in Rome they are keeping old buildings. So apart from historical reference. . . So Mahārāja Parīkṣit, he was king, emperor of the world. So he was preparing for dying. Many, many, from all over the world, saintly person, kings, even some demigods from other planets, they came to see him.
So what you do at the time of death? One has to change. Death means change of this body. The modern civilization, they do not know it. That is the first understanding of spiritual knowledge, that we change our body. I am spirit soul, every one of us, spirit soul, even the animals and the trees and plants and aquatics—any living being. There are 8,400,000 different forms of living being. Of all of them, the human form is considered the best. Best means it has got. . . the human form has got developed consciousness. Developed consciousness means they can understand what is past, what is future, what is present. Especially to understand his position as spirit soul, to understand God, to understand what is His relation with God, and what he should do in that relationship—these things are understandable in the human form of life, not otherwise. We cannot invite dogs and cats to come here and hear about Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. No. That is not possible. But a human being, he can hear; he can understand.
So this is our special opportunity after evolutionary process passing through eight million. . . at least eight million different forms of life. The list is there in Padma Purāṇa, jalajā nava-lakṣāni: "Nine lakhs forms of life within the water." There is animal in the water which is called timiṅgala. It is so big that. . . We have got experience, the whale fish is very big. That whale fish is taken up by this timiṅgala fish just like a big fish swallows a small fish. Such big, big fishes are there within the. . . They do not come visible to the. . . but there are. We get information, timiṅgala. Many very big, big animals are there within the water, deep. So there are nine lakhs, 900,000 forms of life within the water. And then jalajā nava-lakṣāni sthāvarā lakṣa-viṁśati. Then. . . Sthāvarā means "stand up." We have got experience—I do not know whether you have got—in our school days, if a boy is making trouble, the teacher will ask him, "Stand up on the bench." So the stand-up punishment. . . The trees, the plants, they are stand-up punishment. (laughter) "Stand up here for five thousand years." You see? There are many trees, they are standing up for five thousand years, seven thousand years. In California I have seen one tree, they say it is seven thousand years old. So just imagine. If the teacher punishes a boy to stand up for few minutes, how much troublesome it is, and if one is ordered to stand up for seven thousand years, so just imagine what is the punishment.
So that is punishment. These trees and plants, because they committed very sinful activities, they. . . Naked, to become naked, is also another criminal activity. Therefore, by nature's law, the trees, the. . . they are standing up naked. They do not dress. Similarly, if a human being does not dress, does not cover, then what is the difference between the trees and the human being? It is the human being who requires to be properly dressed. That is the law of nature. If we violate, then the punishment is, "All right, you become tree and stand up naked for ten thousand years." This is the nature's law. You cannot violate the nature's law. And we are completely under the laws of nature. You cannot say that "I don't care for it." No. You may say, foolishly, but you are, you are. Just like nature's law is that you must die. Can you say, "No, I shall not die"? Can you say boldly, "No, no, I shall not die. I am now scientific. I have got my science. I shall not die"? The nature's law is: you must die.
So in this way you should understand how strongly you are controlled by the nature's law. But foolishly we say, "No." That is not. Just like this Mahārāja Parīkṣit, such a powerful king, he is now somehow or other cursed by a brāhmaṇa boy that "You must die within seven days." So he is preparing. He has got time, seven days. But what we have got? We haven't got even seven minutes' warning. At any moment we can die. And what we are doing? That is the foolishness. One must be ready, that "I will have to die. And 'die' means I will have to accept another body." Now, there are so many forms of body. As I was explaining aquatics, 900,000, then trees. As the water dries, the vegetation comes. You have got experience. That is the nature's process. And after vegetation, then the flies, insects, moving, up to trees and plants, not moving. Then they move—flies, grasshoppers. And they turn into birds again, very freely flying. And there are many, many big birds in the sky, eagles. Some of the eagles, you have got experience. There are monkey-eating eagles. They capture the monkey. And there are eagles elephant-eating. (laughter) We get all this information. Elephant, they will capture elephant and take it away. (laughter) Just imagine. It is no joking. This is a fact.
So there are so many birds, eagle birds, they fly, and they go from one planet to another. They are resting. . . Just like a bird you see, they fly from one tree to another tree. So their resting place is one planet to another. Just see. You are trying to go to the moon planet bogusly. I'll say bogusly because you could not go there. The moon planet is far away from the sun planet. So it is not possible to go there by the so-called jets plane. No. It is far, far away. It is sixteen hundred thousand miles away from the sun. The modern scientist calculation is ninety-three million miles, the sun is situated, and above that, sixteen hundred thousand miles up, there is moon planet. So by the Vedic calculation it is not possible to go there by the method we are attempting. That is not possible. And the proof is that why, if they are going to the moon planet, why they cannot stay there? Now, the argument is that "There is no vegetation. The atmosphere is different, where living being cannot stay." They say like that. But from the Vedic information we understand that moon planet influence the vegetation in all other planets. So if the moon planet helps vegetation in all other planets, how it is that there is no planet. . . there is no vegetation? So there are many thing, contradiction, and practically we see, they are going to the moon planet, but they cannot stay, uselessly going and coming. So let them do that, but we have got our other inform. . . other sources of information, that we cannot go to the moon planet. It is not possible.
So anyway, the nature's law is very strict. We cannot surpass. That is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā:
- daivī hy eṣā guṇamayī
- mam māyā duratyayā
- mām eva ye prapadyante
- māyām etāṁ taranti te
- (BG 7.14)
You cannot go—or you may go, but so far you have not gone, or you have not been successful. But there are many, many other planets that we see at night, many, many. But spiritual process is so made. . . Kṛṣṇa says, mām eva ye prapadyante māyām etāṁ taranti te. Māyā, the material nature, is very, very strict, but if one becomes Kṛṣṇa conscious, fully surrendered to Kṛṣṇa, he surpasses the laws of material nature. That is possible. Māyām etāṁ taranti te (BG 7.14). How? Just like we are trying to go to this planet or that planet, but we have been unsuccessful. But if you become Kṛṣṇa conscious, then immediately after death you immediately go to the Kṛṣṇa planet. Immediately. Tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti mām eti kaunteya (BG 4.9).
So we Kṛṣṇa conscious people, we believe in the statement of Kṛṣṇa and act accordingly. So we have no difficulty, because we are under the direction of Kṛṣṇa. So we are assured, if we actually act according to the instruction of Kṛṣṇa, then we are sure to go back to Kṛṣṇa, back to Godhead, without any difficulty. Kṛṣṇa says,
- janma karma ca me divyam
- yo jānāti tattvataḥ
- tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma
- naiti mam eti kaunteya
- (BG 4.9)
So we believe. We blindly believe, blindly or knowingly. It is not possible knowingly, but if we accept Kṛṣṇa's argument, then we have to believe. Kṛṣṇa does not say anything without any reason. Nobody says. No authority says like that. So what to speak of Kṛṣṇa? Kṛṣṇa is the greatest authority. If we blindly accept His statement, that is also good, and if we apply our reason and argument, that also you can do. Kṛṣṇa says in the Bhagavad-gītā,
- dehino 'smin yathā dehe
- kaumāraṁ yauvanaṁ jarā
- tathā dehāntara-prāptir
- dhīras tatra na muhyati
- (BG 2.13)
He is giving very practical example that because the soul is within this body, therefore bodily changes are taking place. Now, suppose if a child is born dead. That. . . You can keep it by some method, preservating method, but it will not grow. One can understand very easily. Because the soul is there, therefore the child from the womb of his mother grows gradually. Grows means changing body. Everything information is there in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. The man and woman, father and mother, after sex the two secretion is emulsified, and it takes a form like a pea. And the small living entity, the measurement is also given, keśāgra-śata-bhāgasya śatadhā kalpitaḥ (CC Madhya 19.140): one ten-thousandth part of the upper portion point of hair. You know the point of hair. Now divide it into ten thousand part and take one part. That is the form of the soul. That little spark takes shelter into that emulsified pea, and because the soul is there within, it develops from the mother's womb. The child does not develop all of a sudden. Every mother knows that. It grows gradually, little by little, little by little. When it is seven months, then it is further. . . it moves. So in this way the. . . Kṛṣṇa says that don't take this body as the living being. Dehinaḥ asmin dehe. Within this body, the soul is there. So everyone can understand.
Now, because the soul is there, therefore the body is changing. Everyone knows that he was a child. I know; you know. I remember my childhood body or my boyhood body, my youthhood body. I am old man. I remember them, that "I was doing as a young man like this. I was doing as a boy like this. I was jumping. Now I cannot jump. Why?" The body has changed. The body has changed. It is very good logic. The same "I" am there. I was a boy, I was jumping. Now I am old man, I have changed my body, I cannot do that. I will have to take the stick. Because the body has changed. So where is the fallacy of logic? It is very clearly. . . And the authority says. . . Kṛṣṇa says, not an ordinary person. He says, "Within this body there is the soul, and as on account of the soul the body is changing shape from childhood to boyhood, boyhood to youthhood, from youthhood to old man's body, similarly, when this body will be useless, he will accept another body."
This simple truth one has to understand first of all before anything spiritual knowledge. If one cannot understand that the spirit soul is different from this body, then he is cat and dog. He is not human being.
- yasyātma-buddhiḥ kuṇape tri-dhātuke
- svā-dhīḥ kalatrādiṣu bhauma-ijya-dhīḥ
- yat-tīrtha-buddhiḥ salile na karhicij
- janeṣv abhijñeṣu sa eva go-kharaḥ
- (SB 10.84.13)
Yasyātma-buddhiḥ kuṇape tri-dhātuke. If anyone accepts this body. . . This body is made of three elements, kapha, pitta, vāyuḥ: mucus, bile and air. So if we accept this body, combination of bones and flesh and blood and urines and stool and kapha and mucus and so many things, if we consider this body as "I am, the soul," do you mean to say that is very good knowledge? No. That is go-kharaḥ. Go-kharaḥ means animal. Go means cow and kharaḥ means ass. So these animal think like that: "I am this body." And if a man thinks like that, he is no better than the animal. That is not possible. Do you mean to say by combination of this blood, flesh, bones, urine and stool and so many other things, you can, by combination, you can make a person like big scientist, philosopher, mathematician, by combination of these ingredients? Is it possible? Then there are much quantity of blood and flesh and this in the slaughterhouse. You bring and mix with them stool and urine and make a Professor Einstein. (laughter) You are advanced scientist. You bring this ingredient and make a very intelligent man. So this is all foolishness. Sa eva go-kharaḥ (SB 10.84.13). Anyone who thinks this body as the self, then he is in the animal kingdom. One, if anyone wants spiritual knowledge, he first of all know what is spirit, then spiritual knowledge. If you have no idea of spirit, what is the value of your spiritual knowledge? There is no value. Sa eva go-kharaḥ.
So this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is giving that enlightenment, that "You are not this body." Not this movement; it is there in the statement of Kṛṣṇa. Dehino 'smin yathā dehe kaumāraṁ yau. . . (BG 2.13). Aśocyān anvaśocas tvaṁ prajñā-vādāṁś ca bhāṣase (BG 2.11). When Arjuna was declining to fight. . . Other side was his kinsmen, his brother, nephews, his teacher, all very affectionate. So Arjuna declined, "Kṛṣṇa, I am not going to fight. They have usurped our kingdom. That's all right. They are also our own men. Let them enjoy. But I am not going to kill them." This is Vaiṣṇava. Because he is a devotee, in spite of being harassed by the other party. . . Wife was insulted, then kingdom was taken by betting, by gambling. In this way they were put into so many troublesome position. Still, when there was actual fight, because Arjuna was a Vaiṣṇava, devotee, he said, "Let them enjoy. I am not going to fight." This is Vaiṣṇava. Ordinary man would have taken very seriously, "Oh, these people have insulted like that. They have taken our. . . Yes, we must fight."
So Vaiṣṇava by naturally, by nature, is not violent. But if it requires, if Kṛṣṇa directs that "You must fight," they fight. That is Vaiṣṇava. When Arjuna declined to fight, and then Kṛṣṇa had to instruct him about the whole instruction of Bhagavad-gītā just to induce him to fight. And at last, Arjuna was asked by Kṛṣṇa, "Now what is your decision? I have told you everything. What do you decide? Whatever you decide, now you do. I have finished My instruction." He said, "Yes, I shall fight." Kariṣye vacanaṁ tava, naṣṭo mohaḥ (BG 18.73). "I was illusioned. Now it is my duty. Because You are ordering and I have heard You very patiently, so it is my duty to fight." Kariṣye vacanaṁ tava. This very word is there. "I shall act as You advise." This is the result of studying Bhagavad-gītā. You read Bhagavad-gītā, and when you agree to act by the instruction of Kṛṣṇa, then your Bhagavad-gītā reading is success. Otherwise, if you act differently, then you may read Bhagavad-gītā for many thousands of years, there is no benefit.
So Kṛṣṇa says in the Bhagavad-gītā that aśocyān anvaśocan. In the beginning Arjuna was arguing with Kṛṣṇa to support his decision that he would not fight. But he could not convince Kṛṣṇa very nicely. That he understood, that "Although I am speaking so many things, Kṛṣṇa is not changing. He is fixed up." Then he surrendered himself: "My dear Kṛṣṇa, we are now talking as friends. No, we shall talk now as master and disciple. You. . . I accept You as my master." Śiṣyas te 'haṁ śādhi māṁ prapannam (BG 2.7). He accepted Him as the master, and he became disciple to understand Bhagavad-gītā. This is the way. If you have got your own opinion, you will never understand Bhagavad-gītā. You have to take lessons from the master. Although the book is there. . . For example, I can give you: Suppose if you want to be a medical man, the books are available in the market. You can purchase and read and become a doctor. Is it possible? Is it possible that simply by reading books, purchasing from the market, I become a medical man? No. That is not possible. You have to learn it from a person who is a medical man. Then you will. You go to the medical college and learn the medical science from the practical medical man, and then you examine. . . put yourself in examination. When you pass. . . This is the way.
So any śāstra, any book, even in the material world, it is not possible to read oneself and understand the real fact. That is not possible. Therefore Vedic injunction is that if you want to learn that spiritual science, tad-vijñāna. . . Tat. Tat-vijñāna means spiritual science. Tad-vijñānārthaṁ sa gurum evābhigacchet (MU 1.2.12). This is the instruction. If you want to learn that spiritual science, then you must approach a bona fide guru. Gurum evābhigacchet. There are many śāstric injunction like that. Tasmād guruṁ prapadyeta jijñāsuḥ śreya uttamam (SB 11.3.21). And who requires a guru? Guru is not a fashion. It is necessary. How it is necessary? Now, anyone who is inquisitive to understand the spiritual science, for him it is necessary. Jijñāsuḥ sreya uttamam. Even if you want to become an ordinary electrician, still, you require a teacher. And what to speak of spiritual science? So that is necessary. Tad-vijñānārthaṁ sa gurum evābhigacchet.
So Arjuna followed it, and he submitted himself to Kṛṣṇa to become His disciple, not to talk as friend. So when he accepted Him as the spiritual master, so. . . Teacher. . . The teacher has the right to chastise the student. That is accepted. So He immediately chastised him, Arjuna. Arjuna was chastised. What is that? Aśocyān anvaśocas tvaṁ prajñā-vādāṁś ca bhāṣase (BG 2.11): "My dear Arjuna, you are talking just like a very learned man, but you are lamenting on the subject matter on which no learned man laments. That means you are a fool." It is indirectly said. "No learned man laments on this subject." What was the subject? He was considering that "If I kill the other side, my brother or my nephew or my teacher, they will die." So that is the general impression in the whole world. Then He teaches, "No. On account of death of the body, the soul does not die. The soul simply changes another body. That's all." This is the first instruction. Tathā dehāntara-prāptir dhīras tatra na muhyati (BG 2.13).
For that reason you cannot kill. It is not that Kṛṣṇa was encouraging killing. No. Duty. When there is fight, there is killing. You cannot avoid it. Just like the soldier. What is the duty of the soldier? Kill as many as possible the enemies. But the same soldier, if he comes back home and kills some of his men or countrymen and he is arrested, and in the court he is ordered to be hanged, and if he pleads that "I am a soldier. In the battlefield I have killed so many persons, and now I have killed one man. Why you are ordering me to be hanged?" what will be the answer of the court? The answer: that "You cannot kill on principle. But you can kill on the superior order. You cannot kill by your whims." In the battlefield the commander-in-chief orders, "Yes, you kill and get gold medal." But if you think the, "I have killed so many person in the battlefield. Here is my enemy. I kill him," no, that you cannot do. That you cannot do. This is the principle. When there is duty, that is another thing. But not whimsically. We cannot kill. Therefore Lord Jesus Christ ordered, "Thou shall not kill." This is the order. "Thou shall not kill." But we are violating the order. We are killing so many animals. So this is not good. On the plea that "Lord Christ sometimes took some fish somewhere; therefore we will have to maintain a big slaughterhouse," this is not very good logic.
So anyway, we have to act according to the superior order. And so far the spirit soul is concerned, that is the first lesson of spiritual knowledge. Unless you understand what is spirit. . . We are present here. The body is there and the spirit is there. Now we must analyze according to the direction given in authoritative books. That is very easy. Kṛṣṇa says that within this body there is the spirit soul. And we can experience that unless the spirit soul is there, the body does not change, and as soon as the spirit soul goes away, the body is a dead lump of matter, that's all. Very easy to understand. So we have to first understand this, then spiritual progress. If we remain like asses and dogs and cats, that "I am this body," there is no question of spiritual understanding.
Therefore we are presenting Bhagavad-gītā As It Is. Read it, and you will understand what is the difference between spirit and matter. In so many ways they have been described. Then if we understand that "I am not this body. I am spirit soul," then my duty will be assigned, that "I am spirit soul, ahaṁ brahmāsmi. So I am acting for the body only? The body is perishable." Antavanta ime dehāḥ. Everything is there. Antavat means perishable. Nityasyoktāḥ śarīriṇaḥ: "But the spirit soul is eternal." So I am working day and night so hard only for this body, how to eat, how to dress, how to have sex, how to defend. And what I am doing for the spirit soul? That is knowledge. The spirit soul. . . I am the spirit soul, and because as spirit soul I am within this body, the body is working, moving, and I am simply taking care of the body. What care I am taking for myself, the spirit soul, who is going to change this body?
Now, Kṛṣṇa says, tathā dehāntara-prāptiḥ (BG 2.13). The spirit soul will change this body, as it has already changed from babyhood to childhood, childhood to boyhood. That I already explained. So what type of body I am going to accept next life? I am not going to die; I am simply changing body. Just like we change dress. If one dress is torn or old, we change another dress. Exactly like that. This body we change when it is no more usable. We have got our spiritual body. And they say the spirit is formless. No. Now if this body is my dress, then how the body has got these hands and legs? Just like because you have got actually hands and legs, therefore your coat and pant has got hands and legs. If you have no form, then how the coat and pant is made? The coat. . . The pant has got legs because actually I have got leg. The coat has hands or body because actually I have got body. So the argument that the spirit is formless, that is bogus. Unless I have got form, how the dress body is made with hands and legs and heads and everything?
So these are the subject matters to be considered. That is called brahma-jijñāsā, to understand about his spiritual life, spiritual knowledge. Then there will be question, "How the spirit soul—I am—I have contacted this material body?" And it is said in the Bhagavad-gītā that because I have accepted this material body, all miserable conditions are there. We are trying to get over miseries. That is called struggle for existence. Everyone is trying. He thinks, "One status of life is miserable. Let me avoid it and get better life." That is our struggle. In this way, from lower bodies we have come to this spiritual. . . I mean to say, human form of body. Now it has to be decided what is our next body. Next body. That is answered in the Bhagavad-gītā. You'll find:
- yānti deva vratā-devān
- pitṛn yānti pitṛ-vratāḥ
- bhūtāni yānti bhūtejyā
- mad-yājino 'pi yānti mām
- (BG 9.25)
If you want to go to the higher planetary system where the demigods live, you can go there. Therefore the karmīs, by performing Vedic ritualistic ceremonies, they want elevation to the higher planetary system where the life, prolongation of life is very, very big. As we have got day and night, in the higher planetary system the waxing and waning moon, then when the moon is present there and the sky is in light, that is the day of the higher planetary system. And when the moon is dark, that is the night. That means our fifteen days—in the higher planetary system, twelve hours. Just imagine their year. And such ten thousands of years you can live if you can go to the moon planet. The day and night, fifteen days, your fifteen days is equal to their one day. No, twelve hours. That means your one month is their one day. Now calculate one day; then thirty days, one month; then twelve months equal to one year. Such ten thousands of years, just imagine. You can go there and live like that, yānti deva-vratā devān (BG 9.25), if you like. But that is not eternal life. After that long period, you have to die. So Kṛṣṇa says, janma-mṛtyu-jarā-vyādhi-duḥkha-doṣānudarśanam (BG 13.9). You are trying to avoid all kinds of miserable condition, but your real miserable condition is your birth, death, old age and disease. Try to avoid it. That is perfection. That is spiritual life.
So there are many things. If you kindly take advantage of our offering. . . We are presenting this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement very genuinely and authorizedly. The center is open now. Now it is up to you to take advantage of it and be benefited.
Thank you very much.
Devotees: Jaya Prabhupāda. (break)
Madhudviṣa: If there is any questions to present to His Divine Grace you can ask them now. Yes?
Guest: What is the purpose of the Deity worship?
Madhudviṣa: What is the purpose of Deity worship?
Prabhupāda: Deity means Kṛṣṇa's Deity. Kṛṣṇa and Kṛṣṇa's Deity is not different. The whole idea, spiritual knowledge, means to understand God. So vedaiś ca sarvair aham eva vedyam (BG 15.15). That is the purpose of Vedic knowledge. So just to favor you. . . You cannot see now God. So Kṛṣṇa has come in Deity form to accept your service. And we have to render service. Not that it is a doll or stone. No. He is Kṛṣṇa. Because you cannot see at the present moment except stone and wood, He has accepted this form like stone and wood so that you can see and render service. This is the purpose of Deity worship.
Devotee (1): Śrīla Prabhupāda, you were saying that because the body has arms and legs, then the coat has a similar shape. Then does the spirit soul that's within our body have arms and legs like that?
Devotee (1): Would the spirit soul that is within, say, a cow's body, is in a different shape?
Prabhupāda: Yes. It has got also legs. But the shape has taken according to his desire. Every animal has got these four things. Just like bird, it has got two wings, two legs. The animal has got four legs. And the man has got two hands, two legs. So the same parts of the body, they are appearing in a different type. But the four limbs of the body are there. Hmm?
Devotee (2): Is the original body of the spirit soul a human form?
Madhudviṣa: The question is that whether the eternal form of the spirit soul is a human form, or is it. . .
Prabhupāda: Yes, human form. God is also human form. "Man is made after the shape of God." I think there is in the Bible. Is it not? So God is also like human form. Here you see Kṛṣṇa, two hands, two legs.
Hari-śauri: How do we understand, then, that there are peacocks and flowers and trees in the spiritual world? Are these not eternal forms?
Prabhupāda: Yes. They are more covered. Just like if you cover your body with blanket, the hands and legs are invisible. But you are not the blanket. So the trees and plants, they are more covered. They are not in full manifestation. The human form is the full manifestation of the soul.
Hari-śauri: They are covered in the spiritual world?
Madhudviṣa: He is asking if they were actually covered in the spiritual world as well.
Prabhupāda: Not in the spiritual world. There that is voluntary. Some devotee wants to serve Kṛṣṇa as flower; they become flower there. (laughter) If I want that "As a flower I shall lie down at the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa," he becomes flower, voluntarily. And he can change his. . . from flower to human body. That is spiritual life. There is no restriction. If some devotee wants to serve Kṛṣṇa as cow, he serves Kṛṣṇa as cow, as calf, as flower, as plant, as water, as ground, field, or as father, as mother, as friend, as beloved—anything. Ye yathā mām prapadyante tāṁs tathaiva bhajāmy aham (BG 4.11). That is Kṛṣṇa's all-powerfulness, spiritual life.
Indian guest: What is the first stage of transformation like in the consciousness after one starts chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra?
Prabhupāda: You understand what you are. By chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra, when you are purified, then you can understand that you are not this body; you are soul. Śṛṇvatāṁ sva-kathāḥ kṛṣṇaḥ puṇya-śravaṇa-kīrtanaḥ, hṛdy antaḥ-stho abhadrāṇi (SB 1.2.17). Abhadrāṇi means inauspicious things. That is the modes of ignorance and passion. So in the material world some of us, most of us, we are covered by these modes of passion and ignorance. That is abhadra. That is most inauspicious. We cannot understand. But gradually we have to come to the modes of goodness, sattva-guṇa. So rajo-guṇa, tamo-guṇa is covering us. So by śṛṇvatāṁ sva-kathāḥ kṛṣṇaḥ. . . If you hear about Kṛṣṇa, then these dirty things, rajo-guṇa and tamo-guṇa, will be cleansed. And even it is not completely cleansed, naṣṭa-prāyeṣv abhadreṣu (SB 1.2.18), even almost clean, then you come to the platform of sattva-guṇa. And as soon as you come to the platform of sattva-guṇa, the resultant action of tamo-guṇa and rajo-guṇa, namely kāma-lobhādayaś ca ye. . . Tato rajas-tamo-bhāvāḥ kāma-lobhādayaś ca ye (SB 1.2.19). So long you are covered by the passion and ignorance. . . The ignorance means you do not know anything. Just like animals. And passion means although human being, they are after sense gratification. That is called passion. So both these qualities will keep you in darkness. By the resultant action of these modes, you will be simply greedy and lusty. So if you come to the platform of sattva-guṇa, then you become free from this greediness and lustiness. Then your life becomes settled. Then gradually you will understand what is God, what is your relationship. Tato rajas-tamo-bhāvāḥ kāma-lobhādayaś ca ye. Naṣṭa-prāyeṣv abhadreṣu nityaṁ bhāgavata-sevayā (SB 1.2.18). You can do that simply by cultivating this Bhāgavata life. That is required. What is that?
Devotee (3): Is Kṛṣṇa always seeking to engage us in His devotional service, and is He upset in some way if we reject His offer?
Madhudviṣa: Is Kṛṣṇa always anxious for us to engage in His devotional service, and does He become upset if we reject His offering?
Prabhupāda: Yes, because you are foolish. Kṛṣṇa, God, is coming to you to take you back to home, back to Godhead. If you reject, that is your foolishness. Mūḍha. Na māṁ duṣkṛtino mūḍhaḥ prapadyante narādhamāḥ (BG 7.15). One who does not surrender to Kṛṣṇa, or God—when we speak of Kṛṣṇa, it is God—then what class of man he is? That is described in the Bhagavad-gītā: duṣkṛtinaḥ, mūḍhaḥ, narādhamāḥ, māyayāpahṛta-jñānāḥ, āsuri bhāvam āśr. . . Immediately you come to these categories. What is that? Duṣkṛtinaḥ, most sinful. Unless you are most sinful, you cannot reject Kṛṣṇa's offer. Or unless you are rascal number one, you cannot reject Kṛṣṇa's offer. Duṣkṛtino mūḍhaḥ. So as soon as you reject Kṛṣṇa's offer, that means you are most sinful, you are rascal number one, you are lowest of the mankind, and your knowledge has been taken by māyā. That's all. Thank you very much.
Devotees: Jaya Śrīla Prabhupāda. (end).