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710729 - Lecture BG 07.01 at University of Florida - Gainesville

His Divine Grace
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

710729BG-GAINESVILLE - July 29, 1971 - 36:20 Minutes


. . . yogaṁ yuñjan mad-āśrayaḥ
asaṁśayaṁ samagraṁ māṁ
yathā jñāsyasi tac chṛṇu
(BG 7.1)

Lord Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, speaking about the topmost form of yoga system. In the Sixth Chapter of Bhagavad-gītā He has explained the general haṭha-yoga system.

Please remember that we are preaching this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement on the authority of Bhagavad-gītā. It is nothing manufactured.

(pause) Whose dog? He may go away. (laughter)

So this bhakti-yoga system is authorized, and if you want to know about God, then you have to adopt this bhakti-yoga system. Because in the Sixth Chapter of Bhagavad-gītā it is concluded that the topmost yogī is he who is always thinking of Kṛṣṇa within himself.

yoginām api sarveṣāṁ
śraddhāvān bhajate yo māṁ
sa me yuktatamo mataḥ
(BG 6.47)

When Kṛṣṇa recommended the yoga system, aṣṭāṅga-yoga system . . . aṣṭāṅga means eightfolded, different states of elevation: yama, niyama, āsana, prāṇāyāma, pratyāhāra, samādhi, like that. Dhyāna, dhāraṇā. So the first step of yoga system, as recommended by Kṛṣṇa, the supreme authority, is one has to select a very secluded place and sacred place.

The aṣṭāṅga-yoga meditation cannot be performed in a fashionable city. It is not possible. One has to first of all select a nice place, sacred place. In India, therefore, those who are very serious to practice yoga system, they go to Himalaya, Haridwar. That is also Himalaya. Very secluded place. They remain there alone, and very restricted process of eating, sleeping; there is no question of mating.

So those rules and regulation are very strict, and unless you follow, simply if you make a show of gymnastic, that is not perfection of yoga. Yoga means indriya-saṁyama, to control the senses. If you allow your senses unrestrictedly, and if you make a show of yoga practice, that is not successful. It will never be successful.

So you have to select a nice place, sacred place. Then you have to sit right-angular, and you have to close your eyes half, not full, and see on the tip of your nose. You cannot change your āsana. There are so many rules and regulations which is not possible at the present moment. What to speak of at the present moment—even five thousand years ago, when circumstances of the world was different, and a personality like Arjuna, who was talking with Kṛṣṇa face to face . . .

Just imagine what is his position. Arjuna belonged to the royal family. He was a great warrior and intimate friend of Kṛṣṇa, and constantly living with Him. He, after hearing this process of yoga, aṣṭāṅga-yoga, he said: "My dear Kṛṣṇa, it is not possible for me." He flatly said, admitted, that, "For me, these rules and regulation and practice and controlling the mind is not possible." He flatly denied.

So we have to think—five thousand years ago a personality like Arjuna, he expressed his inability to practice this aṣṭāṅga-yoga system, and what to speak of us? Therefore the conclusion is that in this age, when people are very short-living . . . at least, in India the average duration of life is thirty-five years. In your country it may be more than that, but actually, as your grandfather lived for one hundred years, you cannot live. The things are changing. Especially the duration of life will be reduced. There are prediction in the śāstras. In this age the duration of life, people's sentiment for becoming merciful, brain substance, in so many ways they are being reduced; they are not so powerful.

So the duration of age is very small. We are always disturbed, and practically we have no knowledge about spiritual science. For example, that in this university . . . not only in this university—there are hundreds and thousands of universities all over the world—there is no department of knowledge where the science of the soul is taught. Actually, we are all spirit soul. In the Bhagavad-gītā we understand:

dehino 'smin yathā dehe
kaumāraṁ yauvanaṁ jarā
tathā dehāntara-prāptir
dhīras tatra na muhyati
(BG 2.13)

We are transmigrating from one body to another, exactly like in our present life. Just like all of us present here, we had a body, a small baby body. Where is that body? That body is gone. So far I am an old man. I remember that I was a small baby. I still remember when I was about six months old I was lying down on the lap of my eldest sister, and she was knitting, and I was lying down and playing. I remember.

So it is possible for everyone to remember that I had a small body, then that I had a boy's body, then I had a youthful body. Now I am in this body. So where are those bodies? The body's now gone. It is a different body. That is explained in the Bhagavad-gītā, tathā dehāntara-prāptiḥ (BG 2.13). Similarly, when I give up this body, then I will have to accept another body.

It is very simple to understand. As I have changed so many bodies . . . not only childhood, babyhood, boyhood, youthhood. According to medical science we are changing body every second, imperceptibly. So this process, that the soul is permanent . . . just like I remember my babyhood body or childhood body. I am the same person, soul, but I have changed so many bodies. Similarly, when ultimately I shall change this body, I shall have to accept another body.

This simple formula is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā. Everyone can think on it. And there must be some scientific research. Recently I got one letter from a doctor in Toronto. He suggested there is body . . . er, there is soul. I had some correspondence with him. Actually this is a fact. The soul is there. There are so many proofs—not only in the Vedic literature, but even ordinary experience. The soul is there, and the soul is transmigrating from one body to another. This is going on. But unfortunately there is no serious study on the subject matter or department of knowledge in the universities. This is not very good.

Actually, this human form of life is meant for researching this: athāto brahma jijñāsā. The Vedānta-sūtra says. This human form of life is meant for searching out about Brahman, or the spirit, Absolute Truth. So the yoga system means that brahma-jijñāsā, to search out the Brahman principle within this material body—matter and spirit.

So that searching out, as recommended in the Bhagavad-gītā by Kṛṣṇa Himself . . . and Arjuna said that: "The system You are recommending, or the haṭha-yoga system, is not possible for me." But Kṛṣṇa assured him that Arjuna was the greatest of all yogīs. He, I mean to say, pacified him by saying that "Don't bother because you are unable to practice haṭha-yoga system. You are not a yogī . . . you are the best yogī. You are the best yogī." Why?

He gave this formula, that yoginām api sarveṣām (BG 6.47): "Of all different types of yogīs . . ." There are haṭha-yogī, jñāna-yogī, dhyāna-yogī, bhakti-yogī, many, karma-yogī. There are many yogīs. But Kṛṣṇa said, "Of all the yogīs, the one yogī who is constantly thinking of Me within himself . . ." Yoginām api sarveṣāṁ mad-gatenāntar-ātmanā. Mad-gata. Kṛṣṇa says mad-gata. Means "simply upon Me, Kṛṣṇa." Antar-ātmanā, "within the heart." Sa me yuktatamaḥ: "He is the first-class yogī."

Now who can think of Kṛṣṇa always within himself? That is also very easy to understand. If you love somebody, then you can think of him always within yourself. Otherwise it is not possible. If you love somebody, then naturally you'll think of him always. That is described in the Brahma-saṁhitā:

santaḥ sadaiva hṛdayeṣu vilokayanti
yaṁ śyāmasundaram acintya-guṇa-svarūpaṁ
govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi
(Bs. 5.38)

Premāñjana-cchurita-bhakti-vilocanena. One who has developed love of God, or Kṛṣṇa . . . when I speak of Kṛṣṇa, you should understand "God." Premāñjana-cchurita-bhakti-vilocanena. Another name of Kṛṣṇa is Śyāmasundara. He is blackish like the cloud, but very beautiful; therefore His name is Śyāmasundara.

So in this verse of Brahma-saṁhitā it is said that the santaḥ, saintly person, who has developed love for Śyāmasundara, Kṛṣṇa . . . premāñjana-cchurita-bhakti-vilocanena santaḥ sadaiva. Sadaiva means always, constantly. Santaḥ sadaiva hṛdayeṣu. Hṛdayeṣu means within the heart. Actually, when one comes to the point of samādhi in yoga system, he thinks of Viṣṇu form of the Lord within the heart without any stoppage. That is called samādhi. He is absorbed in the thought of Viṣṇu within the heart.

So Kṛṣṇa, Śyāmasundara, is the original Viṣṇu. That is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā. Ahaṁ sarvasya prabhavaḥ (BG 10.8). Sarvasya means including Brahmā, Viṣṇu, Maheśvara. Everyone. Ahaṁ sarvasya prabhavaḥ. So He is the original Viṣṇu. According to śāstra, Vedic literature, He is original Viṣṇu, Kṛṣṇa. Then His first expansion is Baladeva. Baladeva expansion: Saṅkarṣaṇa. Saṅkarṣaṇa expansion: Nārāyaṇa. Nārāyaṇa expansion: Viṣṇu, Mahā-Viṣṇu, Garbhodakaśāyī, Kṣīrodakaśāyī. These are statements. So Kṛṣṇa is the original Viṣṇu, Śyāmasundara.

So this is the perfect system. Mad-gatenāntar-ātmanā: anyone who is thinking of Kṛṣṇa always within himself, he is first-class yogī. If you want perfection in yoga system, don't be satisfied only by practicing a course of āsana. You have to go further. Actually, the perfection of yoga system means when you are in samādhi, always thinking of the Viṣṇu form of the Lord within your heart, without being disturbed.

Therefore the yogīs go in a secluded place, and in samādhi they . . . controlling all the senses and the mind. You have to control the mind, control the senses, and concentrate everything on the form of Viṣṇu. That is called perfection of yoga. And after that, there are other siddhis, aṣṭa-siddhi: aṇimā, laghimā, prāpti.

So actually this yoga system is very, very difficult. It may be possible by some solitary man, but for the general mass of people it is not possible. The general mass of people, that is recommended in the śāstra that:

harer nāma harer nāma harer nāmaiva kevalam
kalau nāsty eva nāsty eva nāsty eva gatir anyathā
(CC Adi 17.21)

There is no other alternative. Nāsty eva, nāsty eva. There is no other alternative, no other alternative, no other alternative. Three times. Three times means yoga, jñāna and arcana. Yoga system as it was recommended in the Satya-yuga, kṛte yad dhyāyato viṣṇum, that is yoga—always in meditation of Viṣṇu. That is called yoga. Kṛte yad dhyāyato viṣṇuṁ tretāyāṁ yajato makhaiḥ (SB 12.3.52). And in the Tretā-yuga, by performing great sacrifices, yajñas. And in the Dvāpara-yuga, by temple worship.

Kalau tad dhari-kīrtanāt: in the Kali-yuga, this age . . . the present age is called Kali-yuga. Kali-yuga means the age of quarrel and disagreement. Nobody agrees with any other man. Everyone has got his own theory; everyone has got his own philosophy. So therefore it is called Kali-yuga. And if I don't agree with you, you fight with me. Therefore it is called Kali-yuga.

So this is the only method recommended in this age: kalau tad dhari-kīrtanāt. Simply by chanting the holy name of God, one can attain perfect self-realization. Which was attained by the yoga system in the Satya-yuga, which was attained in the Tretā-yuga by performing great sacrifices, and which was performed in the Dvāpara-yuga by large-scale temple worship, that thing can be attained by the simple method hari-kīrtanāt. Hari means the Supreme Personality of Godhead; kīrtanāt—by glorifying Him. This is the method recommended in the śāstras.

And Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu, five thousand, erm five hundred years ago, He appeared in a town which is known as Navadvīpa. It is about sixty miles northern side of Calcutta. People still go there. We have got our temple, center there. It is also a sacred pilgrimage. So Caitanya Mahāprabhu appeared there, and He started this saṅkīrtana movement, mass saṅkīrtana movement, without any discrimination. And He predicted that this saṅkīrtana movement would be spread all over the world, and the Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra would be chanted in every village, town on the surface of the globe.

So in pursuance of the order of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu, following His footsteps, we are trying to introduce this saṅkīrtana movement, Hare Kṛṣṇa, and it is coming out very successful. Everywhere. I am especially preaching in the foreign countries. All over Europe, America, Japan, Canada, Australia I am traveling. Malaysia. And anywhere I have introduced this saṅkīrtana movement—we have got different centers, about sixty centers—they are being received with great pleasure. Just like you saw these boys and girls. I have not imported them from India, but they have taken this movement very seriously, and they will take it, because it appeals to the soul directly.

We have got different status of our life: bodily concept of life, mental concept of life, intellectual concept of life and spiritual concept of life. So actually we are concerned with the spiritual concept of life, athāto brahma jijñāsā. If you are allured by the bodily concept of life, then we are no better than these dogs and . . . cats and dogs. Yasyātma-buddhiḥ kuṇape tri-dhātuke (SB 10.84.13). If we accept that, "I am this body," then we are no better than the cats and dogs, because their concept of life is like that.

When we understand that, "I am not this body," as Kṛṣṇa wanted to impress upon Arjuna in the beginning of His teaching of Bhagavad-gītā: "First of all try to understand what you are. Why you are lamenting in the bodily concept of life? You have to fight. Certainly you have to fight with your brothers and brother-in-laws and nephews, other side. And you are lamenting. But first of all understand whether you are body or not." That is the beginning of Bhagavad-gītā. He tried to make him understood that "You are not body."

So this instruction was not for Arjuna—for everyone. We have to first of all learn that, "I am not this body, I am spirit soul." Ahaṁ brahmāsmi. That is Vedic instruction. And as soon as you come to this point, if you are firmly convinced that you are not this body, that is called brahma-bhūta (SB 4.30.20) stage, Brahman realization stage. That is knowledge, real knowledge. Knowledge, advancement of knowledge for eating, sleeping, mating, that is animal knowledge. The animals also, the dog also knows how to eat, how to sleep, how to mate and how to defend.

So if our education is only on these points . . . the dog is eating according to his nature, but we are also eating in a nice plate, nicely cooked food in a nice table, but the principle is eating. That is not advancement that, "I am eating in a better plate, in a better place than the dog, therefore I am advanced." But you are eating, that's all.

Similarly sleeping. You may sleep in a very nice apartment, six-story building or 102nd-story building, a dog is lying on the street. But when he sleeps and when you sleep, there is no difference. You cannot know whether you are sleeping in a skyscraper building or on the ground, because you are dreaming something else, which has taken you from your bed. You have forgotten that, "My body is lying there on the bed, and now I am flying in the air, dreaming."

So this sleeping method, if you improve, that is not advancement of civilization. Similarly mating. The dog has no social custom. Whenever there is another she-dog, he mates on the street and you may do very silent in a secret place, but the mating is there. But people are learning how to mate like dog. So in this way defending. A dog has also his defending method, he has got teeth and nails. He can defend himself. And you might have atom bombs. But the measure is defending. That's all.

Therefore śāstra says that human life is not meant only for these four principles of life, bodily demands. There is another thing. That another thing is brahma-jijñāsā. Athāto brahma jijñāsā. A human being should be inquisitive to learn what is Absolute Truth. So that education is lacking. Therefore without this brahma-jijñāsā education, brahma jānātīti brāhmaṇaḥ . . . according to Vedic civilization, a brāhmin is learned. Paṇḍita. A brāhmin is called paṇḍita because brāhmin means one who knows Brahma. Brahma jānātīti brāhmaṇaḥ. Therefore he is called paṇḍita.

In India the brāhmin is addressed as paṇḍita. Paṇḍita means a brāhmin is expected to know Brahma; therefore he is brāhmin. Not by birth. Brahma jānāti. Janmanā jāyate śūdraḥ. By birth everyone is śūdra, fourth-class man. Janmanā jāyate śūdraḥ saṁskārād bhaved dvijaḥ. And when he's reformed by the purificatory process . . .

There are daśa-vidha-saṁskāra, ten kinds of purificatory process. When one undergoes all these processes and at last comes to the spiritual master, who gives him sacred thread as recognition of his second birth, dvija . . . dvija means second birth. One birth by the father and mother, and the other birth is by the spiritual master and Vedic knowledge. That is called second birth. Saṁskārād bhaved dvijaḥ. At that time he is given chance to study and understand what is Veda. Veda-pāṭhād bhaved vipraḥ. By studying very nicely all the Vedas, one becomes vipra. Then, when he actually realizes what is Brahma and his relationship with Him, then he becomes a brāhmin.

And above that situation, when from Brahma understanding, impersonal Brahma understanding, he comes to the platform of understanding Viṣṇu, Lord Viṣṇu, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he becomes a Vaiṣṇava. This is the process. That is the perfectional process.

Kṛṣṇa therefore says in the Bhagavad-gītā, janma karma me divyaṁ yo jānāti tattvataḥ: "Anyone who knows Me in truth," what happens to him? Tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti (BG 4.9): "Such person, after giving up this body, do not come back again in this material world to accept a material body." Then what happens to him? Mām eti: "He comes to Me, back to home, back to Godhead."

So this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is directly giving people how to understand Kṛṣṇa. Janma karma me divyaṁ yo jānāti tattvataḥ. Tattvataḥ, in truth. So we are giving Kṛṣṇa knowledge based on this authorized scripture, Bhagavad-gītā, Vedas. Vedas means knowledge. And what is the . . . vedānta means the ultimate end of knowledge. What is that end of knowledge? That is Kṛṣṇa. Vedaiś ca sarvair aham eva vedyaḥ (BG 15.15). By all the Vedas, the ultimate conclusion should be Kṛṣṇa.

Bahūnāṁ janmanām ante (BG 7.19). This conclusion comes after many, many births. Bahūnāṁ janmanām ante jñānavān. After culturing knowledge for many, many births, when actually one becomes wise, then bahūnāṁ janmanām ante jñānavān māṁ prapadyate, he surrenders unto Kṛṣṇa. How he surrenders? Because he knows, vāsudevaḥ sarvam iti (BG 7.19): Vāsudeva, Kṛṣṇa, is everything. Whatever we see, it is simply a manifestation of the energy of Vāsudeva.

One must be convinced on this fact, and then he becomes a devotee, prapadyate. Kṛṣṇa therefore advises that you understand or not understand, sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja (BG 18.66): "Simply surrender unto Me."

So what Kṛṣṇa taught in the Bhagavad-gītā, we are teaching the same thing without any different, manufactured ideas. That is our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. And it is open to everyone. The process is very simple. We have got our center here. If you want to take advantage of this movement, you are welcome. You'll be happy.

Thank you very much. Hare Kṛṣṇa. (end)