681127 - Lecture BG 02.08-12 - Los Angeles
(Redirected from Lecture on BG 2.8-12 -- Los Angeles, November 27, 1968)
Prabhupāda: (kīrtana) (prema-dhvani) Thank you very much. (devotees offer obeisances)
Read. Hare Kṛṣṇa.
Devotee: Second Chapter?
Prabhupāda: Yes, Second.
Devotee: Start at verse 8? "I can find no means to drive away this grief which is drying up my senses. I will not even be able to destroy it if I win an unrivaled kingdom on the earth with sovereignty like the demigods in heaven. (BG 2.8)
"Sañjaya said: Having spoken thus, Arjuna, chastiser of the enemies, told Kṛṣṇa, 'Govinda, I shall not fight,' and fell silent." (BG 2.9)
"O descendant of Bharata, at that time Kṛṣṇa, smiling in the midst of both the armies, spoke the following words to the grief-stricken Arjuna." (BG 2.10)
"The Blessed Lord said . . ."
Prabhupāda: So when we become very serious in a dangerous position, as if we are lost, but Kṛṣṇa smiles. You see? Sometimes we think . . . this is called illusion. The same example, just a man in dreaming, crying, "There is tiger, there is tiger. It is eating me," and the man who is awakened, he is smiling, "Where is the tiger?" (chuckles) "Where is the tiger?" And this man is crying, "Tiger, tiger, tiger." Similarly, when we are very much perplexed . . .
Just like the politicians, they are sometimes perplexed in political situation and claiming, "This is my land, my country," and other party also claiming, "It is my land, my country," and they are fighting very gravely, Kṛṣṇa smiles: "What these nonsense are claiming 'my country, my land'? It is My land, and they are claiming 'my land' and fighting."
Actually, the land belongs to Kṛṣṇa, but these people, under illusion, claiming, "It is my land, it is my country," forgetting how long he shall belong to this country or this nation. That is called illusion.
So this is our position. Without understanding our real position we are perplexed with these all worldly problems, which are all false. Janasya moho 'yam ahaṁ mameti (SB 5.5.8). Moha, moha means illusion. This is the illusion. So everyone is under this illusion. So one who is intelligent, if he can understand that this worldly position is simply illusion . . . the, all the thoughts which I have concocted, based on the principle of "I" and "my," this is all illusion. So one, when one is intelligent to get out of the illusion, he surrenders to a spiritual master.
That is being exemplified by Arjuna. When he's too much perplexed . . . he was talking with Kṛṣṇa as friend, but he saw that, "This friendly talking will not solve my question." And he selected Kṛṣṇa . . . because he knew the value of Kṛṣṇa. At least, he ought to have known. He is friend. And he knows that Kṛṣṇa is accepted . . . "Although He is acting as my friend, but by great authorities Kṛṣṇa is accepted as the Supreme Personality of Godhead."
That was known to Arjuna. So he said that, "I'm so much puzzled that I cannot understand. Even accepting that I shall be victorious in this battle, still I shall not be happy. What to speak of being victorious of this planet, if I become the king of all other planets or if I become a demigod in the higher planetary system, still this distress cannot be mitigated." You see?
Devotee: Verse 11: "The Blessed Lord said: While speaking learned words you are mourning for what is not worthy of grief. Those who are wise lament neither for the living nor the dead."
Purport: "The Lord at once took the position of a teacher and chastised His student, calling him indirectly a fool. The Lord said: 'You are talking like a learned man, but you do not know that one who is learned, one who knows what is body and what is soul, does not lament for any stage of the body, neither in the living nor in the dead condition.' "
"As explained in the later chapters, it will be clear that knowledge means to know matter and spirit and the controller of both. Arjuna argued that religious principles should be given more importance than politics or sociology, but he did not know that knowledge of matter, soul and the Supreme is more important than religious formularies."
"And because he was lacking in that knowledge, he should not have posed himself as a very learned man. As he did not happen to be a very learned man, he was consequently lamenting for something which was unworthy of lamentation."
"The body is born and is destined to be vanquished today or tomorrow. Therefore the body is not as important as the soul. One who knows this is actually learned. For him there is no cause for lamentation in any stage of the material body."
Twelve . . .
Prabhupāda: He says, Kṛṣṇa says that, "This body, either dead or alive, has nothing to be lamented." Dead body, suppose when the body is dead, it has no value. What is the use of lamenting? You can lament for many thousands of years, it will not come to life. So there is no cause of lamenting on dead body. And so far spirit soul is concerned, that is eternal.
Even it appears to be dead, or with the death of this body, he does not die. So why one should be overwhelmed, "Oh, my father is dead, my such-and-such relative is dead," and crying? He's not dead. This knowledge one must have. Then he'll be cheerful in all cases, and he'll be interested simply in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. There is nothing to be lamented for the body, either alive or dead. That is being instructed by Kṛṣṇa in this chapter.
Devotee: "Never was there a time when I did not exist, nor you, nor all these kings. Nor in the future shall any of us cease to be." (BG 2.12)
Purport: "In the Vedas, in the Kaṭha Upaniṣad, as well as in the Śvetāśvatara Upaniṣad, it is said that . . ."
Prabhupāda: (correcting pronunciation) Śvetāśvatara.
Prabhupāda: There are many Upaniṣads; they are called Vedas. Upaniṣads are the headlines of the Vedas. Just like in a chapter there is a headline, similarly, these Upaniṣads are the headlines of the Vedas. Kaṭhopani . . . there are 108 Upaniṣads, principal. Out of that, nine Upaniṣads are very important. So out of those nine Upaniṣads, Śvetāśvatara Upaniṣad, Taittireya Upaniṣad, Aitareya Upaniṣad, Īśopaniṣad, Muṇḍaka Upaniṣad, Māṇḍūkya Upaniṣad, Kaṭhopaniṣad, these Upaniṣads are very important.
And whenever there is argument on some point, one has to give reference from these Upaniṣads. If one can give reference from the Upaniṣads, then his argument is very strong. Śabda-pramāṇa. Pramāṇa means evidence. Evidence . . . if you want to gain in your case . . . just like you have to give very nice evidence in a court, similarly, according to Vedic culture, the evidence is pramāṇa. Pramāṇa means evidence. Śabda-pramāṇa.
There are three kinds of evidences accepted by the learned scholars in Vedic culture. One evidence is pratyakṣa. Pratyakṣa means direct perception. Just like I am seeing you, you are seeing me. I am present, you are present. This is direct perception. And there is another evidence, which is called anumāna.
Suppose in that room, and I am coming just now, I do not know whether any person there is or not. But there is some sound, I can imagine, "Oh, there is somebody." This is called anumāna. In logic it is called hypothesis. That is also evidence. If by my bona fide suggestion I can give evidence, that is also accepted.
So direct evidence and, what is called, hypothesis, or suggestion evidence. But the strong evidence is śabda-pramāṇa. Śabda, śabda-brahman. That means Veda. If one can give evidence from the quotation of the Vedas, then it is . . . it has to be accepted. Nobody can deny the Vedic evidence. That is the system.
How it is so? Caitanya Mahāprabhu has given very nice example. That is in the Vedas. Just like we keep conchshell in the Deities' room. Conchshell is considered very pure, transcendental—otherwise, how we can keep before Deity and you blow conchshell, you offer water with conchshell? How you can offer? But what is this conchshell? The conchshell is the bone of an animal. It is nothing but bone of an animal.
But the Vedic injunction is that if you touch the bone of an animal, you'll have to take bath immediately. You become impure. Now one may say, "Oh, this is contradiction. In one place it is said that if you touch the bone of an animal, then you have to purify yourself by taking bath immediately, and here, the bone of an animal is in the Deities' room."
So it is contradiction, is it not? If bone of an animal is impure, how you can place it in the Deities' room? And if bone of an animal is pure, then what is the meaning of becoming impure and take bath? You'll find similar contradiction in the Vedic injunctions. But because it is said by the Vedas that bone of an animal is impure, you have to accept. But this bone of an animal, conchshell, is pure. Just like sometimes our students are perplexed when we say that onion is not to be taken, but onion is a vegetable.
So śabda-pramāṇa means the Vedic evidence should be taken in such a way that no argument. There is meaning; there is no contradiction. There is meaning. Just like several times I have told you that cow dung. Cow dung is, according to Vedic injunction, is pure. In India it is actually used as antiseptic. In villages especially, there is large quantity of cow dung, and they're, all over the house they have smeared to make the house antiseptic.
And actually, after smearing cow dung in your room, when it is dried, you'll find refreshed, everything antiseptic. It is practical experience. And one Dr. Ghosh, a great chemist, he examined cow dung, that why cow dung is so much important in the Vedic literature. He found that cow dung contains all the antiseptic properties. In Āyur-veda, cow dung dried and burned into ashes is used as toothpowder. It is very antiseptic toothpowder.
Similarly, there are many things, many injunctions in the Vedas, which may apparently appear as contradiction, but they are not contradiction. They are on experience, on transcendental experience. Just like a father says to his child that, "My dear child, you take this food. It is very nice." And the child takes it, believing the father, authority. The father says . . . the child knows that, "My father . . ." He is confident that "My father will never give me anything which is poison."
Therefore he accepts it blindly, without any reason, without any analysis of the food, whether it is pure or impure. You have to believe in such a way. You go to a hotel because it is licensed by the government. You have to believe when you take foodstuff there it is nice, it is pure, or it is antiseptic, or it is . . . but how do you know it? The authority. Because this hotel is authorized by the government, it has got license, therefore you believe.
Similarly, śabda-pramāṇa means as soon as there is evidence in the Vedic literature, "This is this," you have to accept. Then your knowledge is perfect because you are accepting things from the perfect source. Similarly Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa is accepted as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Whatever He says, it is all right. Accept. Arjuna said at last, sarvam etad ṛtaṁ manye (BG 10.14): "My dear Kṛṣṇa, whatever You say I accept it." That should be our principle. Why should we bother about researching when the evidence is there from the authority?
So to save time, to save trouble, one has to accept the authority, actual authority. This is the Vedic process. And therefore Veda says, tad vijñānārthaṁ sa gurum evābhigacchet (Muṇḍaka Upaniṣad 1.2.12). Tad vijñānārtham, in order to learn that transcendental science, one has to accept guru. Gurum eva: certainly, one must. Otherwise there is no possibility. Therefore Kṛṣṇa is accepted here as the spiritual master of Arjuna, and as the spiritual master or father or teacher has got right to chastise his son or disciple . . .
A son is never dissatisfied when father chastises. That is the etiquette everywhere. Even the father is sometimes violent, the child or the son tolerates. A typical example is Prahlāda Mahārāja. Innocent child, Kṛṣṇa consciousness child, but father torturing. He never says anything. "All right."
Similarly Kṛṣṇa, just after taking the position of the spiritual master, is designating Arjuna as a grand fool. Just like Caitanya Mahāprabhu also said that, "My spiritual master found Me a great fool." Was Caitanya Mahāprabhu a fool? And can it be possible that anyone can become the spiritual master of Caitanya Mahāprabhu?
Both things are impossible. Caitanya Mahāprabhu, even not accepting Him as incarnation of Kṛṣṇa, if simply you accept Him as ordinary scholar or man, there was no comparison of His scholarship. But He said that, "My spiritual master found Me a great fool."
What is that meaning? That, "A person, even in My position, always remains a fool before his spiritual master. That is good for him." Nobody should impose that, "What do you know? I know better than you." This position is not . . . denied.
And other point is, from the disciple's point of view, why he should remain always a fool before a person, unless he's actually authorized, actually so great that he can teach me as a fool. One should select a spiritual master in that way, and as soon as the spiritual master is selected, one should remain always a fool, although he may not be a fool. But the better position is like that.
So Arjuna, instead of remaining on the same level as friend and friend, voluntarily accepting to remain a fool before Kṛṣṇa. And Kṛṣṇa is accepting that "You are a fool. You're talking just like a learned man, but you are a fool because you are lamenting on a matter which no learned man laments." That means "A fool laments" that, "You are a fool. Therefore you are a fool." It is in a roundabout way.
Just like . . . what is called in logic? Parenthesis? Or something like that, called. Yes. That if I say that, "You look like that person who stole my watch," that means "You look like a thief." Similarly, (chuckles) Kṛṣṇa, in a roundabout way, says that, "My dear Arjuna, you are talking just like a learned man, but you are lamenting on a subject matter which no learned man laments."
Devotee: "In the Śvetāśvatara Upaniṣad it is said that the Supreme Personality of Godhead is the maintainer of innumerable living entities, in terms of their different situations according to individual work and reaction to work. That Supreme Personality of Godhead is also, by His plenary portions, alive in the heart of every living entity. Only saintly persons, who can see within and without the same Supreme Personality of Godhead, can actually attain to perfect peace eternal.
"The same Vedic truth enumerated herein is given to Arjuna, and in that connection to all persons in the world who pose themselves as very learned but factually have very poor fund of knowledge. The Lord says clearly that He Himself, Arjuna, and all the kings who are assembled in the battlefield are eternally individual beings and that the Lord is eternally the maintainer of the individual living entities."
Prabhupāda: What is the original verse? You read.
Devotee: "Never was there a time when I did not exist, nor you, nor all these kings . . . " (BG 2.12)
Prabhupāda: Now, "Never there was a time when I did not exist, nor you, nor these people." Now He analytically says: "I, you and . . ." first person, second person and third person. That is complete. "I, you and others." So Kṛṣṇa says, "Never there was a time when I, you and all these persons who have assembled in this battlefield did not exist." That means "In the past, I, you and all of them, they individually existed." Individually.
The Māyāvādī theory is that the ultimate spirit is impersonal. Then how Kṛṣṇa can say that, "Never there was a time when I, you and all these persons never existed"? That means, "I existed as individual, you existed as individual, and all these persons who are before us, they existed as individual. Never there was a time."
Now, what is your answer, Dīnadayāla? Kṛṣṇa says never we were mixed up. We are all individuals. And He says: "Never we shall remain . . . never there will be time when we shall not exist." That means in the past we existed as individual, in the present there is no doubt we are existing as individual, and in the future also, we shall continue to remain as individual.
Then when the impersonal conception comes at all? In the past, present, future, there are three times. Huh? In all the times we are individuals. Then when God becomes impersonal or I become impersonal or you become impersonal? Where is the chance?
Now Kṛṣṇa clearly says: "There was never a time when I, you and all these individual kings or soldiers . . . it was not that we did not exist in the past." So in the past we existed as individual, and the present there is no doubt, we are existing as individual. You are my disciple, I am your spiritual master, but you have got your individuality, I have got my individuality. If you don't agree with me, you can leave me.
That is your individuality. So if you don't like Kṛṣṇa, you cannot become in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That is your individuality. So this individuality continues. Similarly Kṛṣṇa, if He does not like you, He may refuse you Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Not that because you are following all the rules and regulations, Kṛṣṇa is obliged to accept you. No. If He thinks that, "He's nonsense; I cannot accept him," He'll reject you.
So He has got individuality, you have got individuality, everyone has got individuality. Where is the question of impersonalism come? There is no possibility. And if you don't believe Kṛṣṇa, you don't believe Vedas, apart from anything else, Kṛṣṇa is accepted as the supreme authority, the Personality of Godhead. Then if we don't believe Him, then where is the possibility of advancing in knowledge? There is no possibility of it. So there is no question of individuality. This is the statement of authority.
Now, apart from statement of authority, you have to apply your reason and arguments. Can you say anywhere there is agreement between two parties? No. You go, study. In the state or in the family, in the community, in the nation there is no agreement. Even in the assembly, even in your country. Suppose there is Senate. Everyone has got country's interest, but he's thinking in his individual way.
One is thinking that, "My country's welfare will be in this line." Otherwise, why there is competition during election of president? Everyone is saying that, "America needs Nixon." And another president, he also says: "America needs me." So, but why two? If America needs you, and you are both . . . no. There is individuality. Mr. Nixon's opinion is something else. Mr. another candidate's opinion is something else.
In the assembly, in the Senate, in the Congress, in the United Nations, everyone is fighting with his individual view. Otherwise, why there are so many flags in the world? You cannot say anywhere impersonalism. Personality is predominating everywhere. Everywhere, the personality, individuality, is predominant. So we have to accept. We have to apply our reason, arguments, and accept the authority. Then the question is solved. Otherwise it is most difficult.
Devotee: "The Supreme Personality of Godhead is the supreme individual person, and Arjuna, the Lord's eternal associate, and all the kings assembled there are individual eternal persons. It is not that they did not exist as individuals in the past, and it is not that they will not exist . . . they will not remain as eternal persons. Their individuality existed in the past and their individuality will continue in the future without interruption.
"Therefore there is no cause for lamentation for any one of the individual living entities. The Māyāvādī, or impersonal, theory that after liberation the individual soul, separate on account of māyā, or illusion, will merge into the impersonal Brahman without individual existence . . ."
Prabhupāda: Now, the Māyāvādī says that this individuality is māyā. So their conception is that spirit, the whole spirit is a lump. Their theory is ghaṭākāśa poṭākāśa. Ghaṭākāśa poṭākāśa means . . . just like sky. The sky is an expansion, impersonal expansion. So in a pot, in a water pot, in a pitcher that is closed . . .
Now, within the pitcher there is also sky, a small sky. Now as soon as the pitcher is broken, the outside, the bigger sky, and the small sky within the pitcher mixes. That is Māyāvāda theory. But this analogy cannot be applied. Analogy means points of similarity. That is the law of analogy. The sky cannot be compared . . .
The small sky within the pitcher cannot be compared with the living entity. It is material, matter. Sky is matter, and individual living entity is spirit. So how you can say? Just like a small ant, it is spirit soul. It has got its individuality. But a big dead stone, hill or mountain, it has no individuality.
So matter has no individuality; spirit has individuality. So if the points of similarity differ, then there is no analogy. That is the law of analogy. So you cannot analogize with matter and spirit. Therefore this analogy is fallacious, the ghaṭākāśa poṭākāśa.
Then another evidence is in the Bhagavad-gītā. Kṛṣṇa says that mamaivāṁśo jīva-bhūta (BG 15.7): "These individual souls, they are My part and parcel," jīva-loke sanātanaḥ, "and they are eternal." That means eternally they are part and parcel. Then when . . . how this Māyāvāda theory can be supported, that due to māyā, being covered by māyā, they are now appearing individual, separate, but when the covering of māyā will be taken away, they will mix up just like the small sky within the pitcher and the big sky outside mixes? So this analogy is fallacious from logical point of view, as well as from authentic Vedic point of view. They are eternally fragments.
There are many other evidences from Bhagavad-gītā. Bhagavad-gītā says that spirit cannot be fragmented. So if you say that by covering of māyā the spirit has become fragment, that is not possible. It cannot be cut. Just like if you cut one big piece of paper into small fragments, it is possible because it is matter, but spiritually it is not possible. Spiritually, eternally, the fragments are fragments, and the Supreme is Supreme. Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme, and we are fragmental parts. We are fragments eternally.
These things are explained in Bhagavad-gītā in different places very nicely. I request you all to keep one copy of this Bhagavad-gītā, every one of you, and read it carefully. And there will be examination in the coming September. So . . . of course, that is voluntary. But I request you to prepare for the examination next September. And one who will pass the examination will get the title Bhakti-śāstrī. Have you distributed that . . .? Yes.
Devotee: "Nor is the theory that we only think of individuality in the conditioned state supported herein. Kṛṣṇa clearly says that in the future also the individuality of the Lord and others as it is . . ."
Prabhupāda: Kṛṣṇa never says that after liberation these individual souls will mix up with the Supreme Soul. Kṛṣṇa never says in the Bhagavad-gītā.
Devotee: "Kṛṣṇa clearly says that in the future also the individuality of the Lord and others, as it is confirmed in the Upaniṣads, will continue eternally. This statement of Kṛṣṇa is authoritative."
Prabhupāda: Yes, Upaniṣad says nityo nityānām. Now, nitya means eternal, and the Supreme Lord is the supreme eternal, and we individual souls, we are also many eternals. So He is the leader eternal. Eko bahūnām . . . how He is leader? Eko bahūnāṁ vidadhāti kāmān (Kaṭha Upaniṣad 2.2.13).
That one, singular number eternal, person, He is supplying all the needs of other eternals. These things are clearly said in the Vedas. And actually we are experiencing. Just like in Christian theology, the individual goes to the church and prays God, "Give us our daily bread." Why he's asking God? Of course, this atheist class of men are now teaching them, "Where is bread? You are going to church. You come to us, we shall supply you bread."
So this Vedic thought is there also. The Veda says, eko bahūnāṁ vidadhāti kāmān. That supreme one eternal, He's supplying, He's maintaining all other individual eternals. And Bible also enjoins that, "You go, ask for your bread to God."
So unless God is maintainer and supplier, why this injunction is there? Therefore He is the leader; He is the maintainer. And the Vedas clearly says this is the position. He is the Supreme. And by knowing this, one can become in peace. That is the Vedic injunction.
Devotee: "This statement of Kṛṣṇa is authoritative, because Kṛṣṇa cannot be subject to illusion. If individuality . . ."
Prabhupāda: Yes. If the Māyāvādī philosopher says that this statement of Kṛṣṇa is in māyā, that "He says that 'Everyone was individual in the past.' No, in the past everyone was one, lump sum, homogeneous. By māyā, we have become individual . . ."
If the Māyāvādī says like that, then Kṛṣṇa becomes one of the conditioned soul. He does not . . . He loses His authority. Because conditioned soul cannot give you the truth. I am conditioned soul. I cannot say something which is absolute.
So Kṛṣṇa is accepted as the Absolute. So if the Māyāvādī theory is accepted, then Kṛṣṇa's theory has to be rejected. If Kṛṣṇa is rejected, then there is no need of reading Kṛṣṇa's book, Bhagavad-gītā. It is useless, waste of time, if He's a conditioned soul like us. Because we cannot take any instruction from a conditioned soul.
So the spiritual master, even if you take that he is conditioned soul, but he does not speak anything from his own side. He speaks from Kṛṣṇa's side. So unless . . . the Vedic principle is that unless one is not liberated from the material conditions, he cannot give us any perfect knowledge.
The conditioned soul, however he may be academically advanced, educated, he cannot give us any perfect knowledge. Only one who is above the condition of these material laws, he can give us the perfect knowledge.
Similarly Śaṅkarācārya, he's also impersonalist, but he accepts Kṛṣṇa the supreme authority. Sa bhagavān svayaṁ kṛṣṇa (SB 1.3.28): "Kṛṣṇa is that Supreme Personality of Godhead." The modern Māyāvādī philosophers, they do not disclose this statement of Śaṅkarācārya, to cheat people. But Śaṅkarācārya's statement is there. We can give evidence. He accepts Kṛṣṇa as the supreme authority.
He has written so many nice poems praising or worshiping Kṛṣṇa. And at the last time he says, bhaja govindaṁ bhaja govindaṁ bhaja govindaṁ mūḍha-mate: "You rascal fools. Oh, you are depending on grammar to understand. This is all nonsense." Bhaja govindam: "Just worship Govinda." Bhaja govindaṁ bhaja . . . three times he says, "Just worship Govinda." Bhaja govindaṁ bhaja govindaṁ bhaja govindam.
Just like Caitanya Mahāprabhu says three times, harer nāma harer nāma harer nāma (CC Adi 17.21). Three times means giving too much stress. Just like we sometimes say: "You do this, do this, do this." That means no more denial. Finish all stress. So as soon as one thing is three times stressed, that means final. So Śaṅkarācārya says, bhaja govindaṁ bhaja govindaṁ bhaja govindaṁ mūḍha-mate. Mūḍha. Mūḍha I've several times explained. Mūḍha means rascal, ass. "You are depending on your grammatical understanding," dukṛn karaṇe.
Dukṛn, these are grammatical affix and prefix, pratya, prakaraṇa. "So you are depending on this verbal root, that verbal root, and creating, interpreting your meaning in a different way. All this is nonsense. This dukṛn karaṇe, your grammatical jugglery of words, will not save you at the time of death. You rascal, you just worship Govinda, Govinda, Govinda." That is the instruction of Śaṅkarācārya.
Because he was a devotee, he was a great devotee. But he pretended to be an atheist because he was to deal with the atheist. Unless he presents himself as an atheist, the atheist followers will not hear him. Therefore he presented Māyāvāda philosophy for the time being. The Māyāvāda philosophy cannot be accepted eternally. The eternal philosophy is Bhagavad-gītā. That is the verdict.
Devotee: "If individuality is not a fact, then Kṛṣṇa would not have stressed it so much even for the future. The Māyāvādī . . ."
Prabhupāda: Yes. He says that there was no such time when we are not individual, and there will be no such time in the future when we shall not remain individual. And so far present is concerned, we are all individual. You know. So where is the possibility of losing individuality, become imperson? No. There is no possibility.
This voidism, impersonalism, they are artificial way of negating the perplexing variegatedness of this material existence. That is the negative side only. That is not a positive side. A positive side is that, as Kṛṣṇa says, tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti mām eti kaunteya (BG 4.9): "After giving up this material tabernacle, one comes to Me." Just like after leaving this room, you have to enter another room. You cannot say that, "After leaving this room, I shall live in the sky." Similarly, after leaving this body, if you go to Kṛṣṇa in the spiritual kingdom, your individuality will be there, but you'll have that spiritual body. When there is spiritual body there is no perplexities.
Just like your body is different from the body of the aquatics. The aquatics, they have no disturbance in the water because their body is made like that. They can live there peacefully. You cannot live. Similarly, the fishes, if you take them out of the water, they cannot live.
Similarly, because you are spirit soul, you cannot live peacefully in this material world. This is foreign. But as soon as you enter into the spiritual world, your life is eternal, blissful and full of knowledge, real peace. Tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti (BG 4.9). Kṛṣṇa says: "After leaving this body, he does not come to this perplexities of material world." Mām eti, "He comes to Me." "Me" means His kingdom, His paraphernalia, His associates—everything.
If some rich man or some king says: "All right, you come to me," that does not mean that he's impersonal. If a king says: "Come to . . ." means that he has got his palace, he has got his secretary, he has got his nice apartment, everything is there. How he can be imperson? But he says only "Come to me." This "me" means everything. This "me" does not mean impersonal. And we get information from Brahma-saṁhitā:
- surabhīr abhipālayantam
- (Bs. 5.29)
So He's not impersonal. He's raising cows, He's with hundreds and thousands of goddess of fortune, His friends, His paraphernalia, His kingdom, His house, everything is there. So there is no question of impersonalism.
Devotee: "The Māyāvādī may argue that the individuality spoken of by Kṛṣṇa is not spiritual but material. Even accepting the argument that the individuality is material, how can one distinguish Kṛṣṇa's individuality?"
Prabhupāda: They also think of Kṛṣṇa, therefore, as material. That is also condemned by Kṛṣṇa. You'll find, avajānanti māṁ mūḍhā mānuṣīṁ tanum āśritam (BG 9.11): "Because I have appeared just like a human being, these rascals deride at Me that I am also one of them." Mūḍha. Mūḍha means rascal. Just like Dr. Radhakrishnan says, "It is not to Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa . . . it is the soul within the Kṛṣṇa." That means he identifies Kṛṣṇa as one of us: His body and His soul different.
But Kṛṣṇa is not . . . Kṛṣṇa said, sambhavāmy ātma-māyayā (BG 4.6): "I appear in My own, original stature. I do not change." We change. The individual soul . . . prakṛteḥ kriyamāṇāni (BG 3.27). He's conducted by, influenced by this prakṛti, nature, but He's not conducted or influenced by the nature. He comes in His own influence, as He is, ātma-māyayā. This is the distinction. Therefore He does not change body. When I come, I change bodies. This time I may have this body; next time I may have another body. That is material, and therefore I forget. Just like Kṛṣṇa says in the Fourth Chapter that "Many times you and I came. You have forgotten." Because we change our material body, therefore we forget. These things all will be explained.
Devotee: "Kṛṣṇa affirms His individuality in the past and confirms His individuality in the future also. He has confirmed His individuality in many ways, and impersonal Brahman has been declared as subordinate to Him. Kṛṣṇa has maintained spiritual individuality all along, and if He is accepted as an ordinary conditioned soul in individual consciousness, then His Bhagavad-gītā has no value as an authoritative scripture."
"A common man with all the defects of human frailty is unable to teach that which is worth hearing. Bhagavad-gītā is above such literature. No mundane book compares with the Bhagavad-gītā. When one accepts Kṛṣṇa as an ordinary man, the Bhagavad-gītā loses all importance."
"The Māyāvādī argues that the plurality mentioned in this verse is conventional, and that the plurality thus refers to the body. But previous to this verse such a bodily conception has already been condemned. After condemning the bodily conception of living entities, how was it possible for Kṛṣṇa to place a conventional proposition on the body again?"
"Therefore, the plurality is on spiritual grounds, as is confirmed by great teachers like Śrī Rāmānuja. It is clearly mentioned in many places in the Bhagavad-gītā that this spiritual plurality is understood by those who are devotees of the Lord."
"Those who are envious of Kṛṣṇa as the Supreme Personality of Godhead have no bona fide access to the great literature. The nondevotee's approach to the teachings of the Bhagavad-gītā is something like a bee licking on a bottle of honey. One cannot have a taste of honey unless one can taste within the bottle. Similarly, the mysticism of the Bhagavad-gītā can be understood only by devotees."
"No one else can taste it, as is stated in this Fourth Chapter of the book. Nor can the Gītā be touched by persons who envy the very existence of the Lord. Therefore the Māyāvādī explanation of the Gītā is a most misleading presentation of the whole truth. Lord Caitanya has forbidden us to read commentaries made by the Māyāvādīs."
Prabhupāda: Yes. Lord Caitanya has clearly said, māyāvadi-bhāṣya śunile haya sarva-nāśa (CC Madhya 6.169). One meets a disaster if he hears a Māyāvādī philosopher to understand Vedic literature. That is His injunction. Māyāvadi-bhāṣya śunile haya sarva-nāśa. Sarva-nāśa means disaster. It is actually disaster. A māyāvadi-bhāṣya, Māyāvādī commentary, they have simply tried, the individual, tiny individual spiritual spark that, "You are the Supreme."
So he's just a Dr. Frog. You see. So puffed up, puffed up, when he . . . at one time, it will burst. Therefore it is disastrous. It is disastrous. (chuckling) Māyāvadi-bhāṣya śunile haya sarva-nāśa. So that's all. Finished? Yes. Oh, not yet?
Devotee: "Therefore the Māyāvādī explanation of the Gītā is a most misleading presentation of the whole truth. Lord Caitanya has forbidden us to read commentaries made by the Māyāvādīs and warns that one who takes to understanding of the Māyāvādī philosophy loses all power to understand the real mystery of the Gītā."
"If individuality refers to the empirical universe, then there is no need for teachings of the Lord. The plurality of the individual souls and of the Lord is an eternal fact, and it is confirmed by the Vedas as above mentioned."
Prabhupāda: So you read very carefully Bhagavad-gītā. You have to meet so many opposing elements, so you have to argue and you convince them.
Hmm. (saṅkīrtana party enters and offers obeisances)
So, what is your report?
Tamāla Kṛṣṇa: Yesterday we sold 125 magazines and collected twenty dollars. Today, so far, during the day, we have sold . . . how many have you sold today?
Tamāla Kṛṣṇa: Eighty-five today so far.
Prabhupāda: And there is night.
Tamāla Kṛṣṇa: Tonight, we will go out tonight.
Bīrabhadra: I have a question. In about the middle of your lecture you said that Kṛṣṇa said that everybody always lived on. "I lived on, you lived on and everybody here lived on." Does that means us in this room lived on, too? We always lived?
Prabhupāda: What do you think?
Bīrabhadra: I don't know.
Prabhupāda: Yes. "All" means including all men of this room also. You also.
Bīrabhadra: I lived on?
Prabhupāda: Yes. You lived in the past, you are living at present, you will live in the future also. Is that all right?
Bīrabhadra: I understand now.
Devotee: I read somewhere in your writings that in order to understand the confidential affairs of Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa one must serve the gopīs who are servants of the gopīs, and I assumed that you were a servant of the gopīs. Is that correct? Or . . . how do I serve the servants of the gopīs?
Prabhupāda: Gopīs, they are not conditioned souls. They are liberated spirits. So first of all you have to come out from this conditioned life. Then the question of serving gopī will come. Don't be, at the present moment, very eager to serve gopī. Just try to get out of your conditional life. Then time will come when you'll be able to serve gopī.
In this conditional stage we cannot serve anything. Kṛṣṇa is performing it. But Kṛṣṇa gives us opportunities to accept service in this arcā-mārga. Just like we keep the Deity of Kṛṣṇa, offer prasādam under regulation, under principle. So we have to make advance in this way, this chanting, hearing, and worshiping in the temple, ārati, offering prasādam. In this way, as we make advance, then automatically Kṛṣṇa will reveal to you, and you'll understand your position, how you have to . . .
Gopīs means who are always, constantly engaged in the service of the Lord. So that eternal relationship will be revealed. So we have to wait for that. Immediately we cannot imitate serving gopīs. That's a good idea that we shall serve gopī, but it will take time. Not immediately. Immediately we have to follow the rules and regulation and routine work.
Viṣṇujana: Do the liberated souls also seek after this Kṛṣṇa consciousness? Those who have become free . . .
Prabhupāda: They become perfect in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Liberated soul means . . . we are just trying to be Kṛṣṇa conscious. We are not actually in full Kṛṣṇa consciousness. We are . . . just like a diseased person is trying to recover. So one who is recovered, there is no question of his healthy life. We are trying to be healthy, our present position. So we are trying to be Kṛṣṇa conscious. So one who is liberated he is nothing but Kṛṣṇa conscious. You follow? Yes.
Kṛṣṇa consciousness is the perfection of life. So we are trying to reach that platform of perfection by regulative principle. But when we are actually on the platform, there is nothing but Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That is the perfection of life. That is our actual, liberated stage. Jīvera svarūpa haya nitya-kṛṣṇa-dāsa (CC Madhya 20.108). That is our svarūpa. Svarūpa means actual constitutional position. And mukti, liberation, means to come to that real position. Just like healthy life means to come to the normal life from the diseased stage. That is healthy life and normal life.
So Kṛṣṇa consciousness is our normal consciousness. This normal consciousness is now polluted. We have got so many other consciousness. So this is an attempt to get out of all, I mean to say, infected consciousness, come to the real stage of pure Kṛṣṇa consciousness.
One question. No more. Next day.
Devotee: In Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam you have said that . . . it's stated that Vyāsadeva was afraid when Sūta Gosvāmī was born that he would leave home because he was already a liberated soul.
Devotee: It says in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam that Vyāsadeva was afraid that Sūta Gosvāmī when he was born would leave home because he was already a liberated soul.
Devotee: But he was attracted to Kṛṣṇa's pastimes.
Devotee: So what . . .?
Prabhupāda: That is the sign of liberated soul. Because to become attracted by Kṛṣṇa, that is our normal condition. So he was liberated; therefore normally he became attracted with Kṛṣṇa's pastimes. That is his normal life. One who is not attracted by Kṛṣṇa's pastimes, he will be attracted by President Johnson's pastimes. (laughter)
One has to be attracted. One has to be attracted by the dog's pastimes. Don't you see a person how he is serving the dog? The dog stands, passes urine, he also stands. You see? He's a human being, and he is waiting for the dog passing urine. How much he is attending the pastimes of the dog?
So if you are not attracted by the pastimes of God, then you'll have to be attracted by the pastimes of the dog. There is no other alternative: either māyā or Kṛṣṇa. The atheist, agnostic, they deny Kṛṣṇa's pastimes; therefore they remain attracted by the pastimes of this material world.
Madhudviṣa: Prabhupāda, I think this is . . . did Lord Caitanya take sannyāsa from a Māyāvādī sannyāsī?
Prabhupāda: Yes. That is a formality. That is not very important. Because Māyāvādī Sannyāsīs, they are also Vedic sannyāsī. They are not outsiders. But their interpretation of Veda is different. But they follow the Vedic rules. So this acceptance of sannyāsa is following a principle of the Vedic rules.
So the Māyāvādī sannyāsī may differ in his interpretation, but he's following the Vedic rules. So this acceptance of sannyāsa is following the Vedic rules. So you can accept sannyāsa even from Māyāvādī. It doesn't matter.
But you have to transcend the limits of Vedic rules. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That also Caitanya Mahāprabhu . . . although He took sannyāsa, He did not assume the sannyāsa title. His sannyāsa guru was Keśava Bhāratī. Naturally, He would have accepted the Bhāratī title, Śrī Kṛṣṇa Bhāratī, or something like that. But He remained Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya. Caitanya is the name of the brahmacārī under the Bhāratī sannyāsī.
One brahmacārī. The brahmacārīs are under . . . they are assistant or personal servitors of a sannyāsī. That is the system. So Caitanya Mahāprabhu was . . . in the beginning, He was accepted . . . that is the Māyāvādī system. One is accepted first of all as brahmacārī. So that, His name was Caitanya.
But even after His acceptance of sannyāsa, He did not assume the title Bhāratī. That means actually He did not take sannyāsa. That was simply formality. Because Māyāvādī sannyāsī thinks that he is God; so how He can assume that title? He was preaching, He was going to preach that we are servant of God; therefore He did not assume that title.
And besides that, when Caitanya Mahāprabhu was going to Lord . . . see Jagannātha Purī, His rod was taken away by Nityānanda and it was broken and thrown away. So He, apparently He became very angry that "You have broken My rod, sannyāsa rod. So I am not going with You." He separated. These statements are there in the Caitanya-caritāmṛta.
So in one sense, Caitanya Mahāprabhu did not require to accept any sannyāsa guru, but He accepted the formality that if one takes sannyāsa, one has to take sannyāsa from another sannyāsī. That is the system. Just like if you want to get yourself married, you have to call for a priest. That does not mean that you have to agree with the priest's personal opinion. Do you follow? Yes.
He may execute the rules and regulation of marriage ceremony, but that does not mean that one has to agree with the priest's opinion, personal opinion. This is the answer. But when you accept a spiritual master, that is not allowed. Unless you cent per cent agree with the spiritual master's opinion or philosophy, there is no need of accepting a spiritual master. There is no need.
Jaya-gopāla: How is Māyādevī in such a distasteful position? How did she acquire her position?
Prabhupāda: (S)He's not acquired. (s)he's given that position by Kṛṣṇa. Because there are many individual souls who will defy Kṛṣṇa, therefore Māyāvādī (Māyādevī) is required to punish them . . . Māyādevī is required to punish them. Daivī hy eṣā guṇamayī mama māyā duratyayā (BG 7.14): "It is very difficult to surpass the stringent laws of My māyā." The laws . . . the māyā is not independent. Just like police force. What is the value of police force unless government gives the power? Does it mean . . . suppose a Mr. John, he comes as a policeman. He's Mr. John. What power he has got?
But because government has given him power, he can arrest you. Similarly, Māyā has no powers. Kṛṣṇa has given her power to chastise these individual souls who are defying the authority of Kṛṣṇa. They should be punished. It is Māyā's thankless task, but Māyā is obedient servant of Kṛṣṇa. Mama Māyā. He says, "My Māyā."
So Māyā is not degraded. Māyā is faithful servant of Kṛṣṇa. She is faithfully serving. That is stated in the Brahma-saṁhitā. You should read. So many nice books you have got. What is Māyā doing? That is stated in the Brahma-saṁhitā:
- sṛṣṭi-sthiti-pralaya-sādhana-śaktir ekā
- chāyeva yasya bhuvanāni vibharti durgā
- (Bs. 5.44)
Durgā is Māyā. Now what is the position of Māyā? Māyā is so strong that sṛṣṭi-sthiti-pralaya: she can perform creation, maintenance and dissolution of this whole universe. She's so powerful. The material nature is so powerful. So sṛṣṭi-sthiti-pralaya-sādhan a-śaktir ekā. Alone, she can do this as good as Kṛṣṇa, or the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
Sṛṣṭi-sthiti-pralaya-sādhana-śaktir ekā chāyeva. But she is just like shadow. Chāyeva yasya. Chāyeva yasya . . . she is working just like shadow. Just like here is shadow of my hand. If I shake my hand, the shadow also shakes. The Māyā is acting like that. In the Bhagavad-gītā also it is said, mayādhyakṣeṇa prakṛtiḥ sūyate sa-carācaram (BG 9.10): "Under My superintendence, prakṛti, the nature, or Māyā, is acting." Chāyeva yasya bhuvanāni vibharti durgā.
And next line, icchānurūpam api yasya ca ceṣṭate sā, that Māyā is acting under the direction of the Personality. And who is that personality? Govindam adi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi. "That personality is Govinda, the Supreme Person. I am offering my respectful obeisances." So Māyā is acting under the direction of Kṛṣṇa just like the shadow is moving under the movement of the original.
So Māyā's position is not degraded. Don't think like that. Therefore Vaiṣṇava offers all respect to Māyā, because she is working under Kṛṣṇa. She is Vaiṣṇavī.
She is also energy of Kṛṣṇa. Therefore she is also Vaiṣṇavī. In the Caṇḍī . . . (break) (end)