LOB 21

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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada



21.
The wind carries the clouds to different parts of the globe, and the clouds distribute rains, to the satisfaction of the people in general, just as rich kings and merchants distribute their accumulated wealth, inspired by religious priests.

As already explained, the four divisions of society—namely the intelligent class of men (the brāhmaṇas), the ruling class (the kṣatriyas), the mercantile class (the vaiśyas), and the laboring class (the śūdras)—are meant to achieve one goal in life: self-realization, or cultivation of the human spirit. The intelligent class of men, the brāhmaṇas, are to inspire the kṣatriyas and vaiśyas in performing sacrifices for spiritual cultivation, and thus the cooperation of the brāhmaṇas, kṣatriyas, and vaiśyas uplifts the people in general, or the ordinary laboring class of men. As soon as this cooperation between the four classes of men in society stops and the basic principles of spiritual culture are neglected, the social structure of humanity becomes a second edition of animal life, based on the propensities of eating, sleeping, fearing, and mating. It is the duty of the intelligent men to influence the members of the richer communities—the kṣatriyas and vaiśyas—to sacrifice for spiritual culture. Only in this way can the tension between the capitalists and the laborers be well mitigated.

In this age of Kali, when a slight difference of opinion leads to quarrel, even to the extent of riots, it is the duty of the intelligent men, the brāhmaṇas, to selflessly inspire the richer people to sacrifice for this purpose. It is suggested herewith that the men of the intelligent class should not themselves try to become kṣatriyas or vaiśyas, nor should they engage themselves in the occupations of the various other classes; rather, the brāhmaṇas should simply guide them in spiritual cultivation, just as the wind carries the clouds to other places to pour water. The wind itself does not take up the responsibility for pouring water.

The most intelligent men in society are the saints and sages who have sacrificed everything for the service of spiritual culture. Their duty is to travel throughout human society and inspire its members to engage themselves in acts of spiritual culture by sacrificing their words, money, intelligence, and life. That should be the theme of human life in order to make it a complete success. A society with no taste for spiritual culture is a blazing fire, and everyone in that fire perpetually suffers the threefold miseries. As clouds pour water on a blazing fire in the forest and thus extinguish it, the intelligent men who work as the spiritual masters of society pour water on the blazing fire of miseries by disseminating spiritual knowledge and inspiring the richer section of the society to help in the cause. Temples of worship, for example, are constructed by the rich, and these temples are meant to impart spiritual education to people in general. The periodic spiritual ceremonies are held for inspiration, and not for exploitation. If there are flaws now because of the age of Kali, they should be rectified, but the institutions must be saved.