Collaborate with us to invoke and fully manifest Srila Prabhupada's Vani-presence.
710728 - Lecture BS - New York
Prabhupāda: Govindam ādi-puruṣam tam ahaṁ bhajāmi. We are worshiping the original person, ādi-puruṣam. Original person... As we are all persons, our origin also a person. We should always understand this. Ādi-puruṣam. The same example: unless my forefather was a person, how his son, his son, his son, his son—I am the last—we are persons? So the original father, the supreme father, or God, or Kṛṣṇa, must be a person, not imperson. We should always remember. Govindam ādi-puruṣam tam ahaṁ bhajāmi.
So Śukadeva Gosvāmī is recommending that either you go through this austerity process, brahmacarya, śama, dama, titikṣa, dhana, satya, śauca, yama, niyama (BG 18.42), so many items... Either you go through this process to come to the platform of your spiritual understanding, or kecid, those who are fortunate, kecid kevalayā bhaktyā, the same result is open. Sometimes other people, the so-called yogīs, jñānīs, karmīs, or followers of religious, ritualistic ceremonies, they think, "How it is possible that these Hare Kṛṣṇa people have become so quickly self-realized simply by chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa, without undergoing so many processes?" That is the gift of Lord Caitanya.
Caitanya, Lord Caitanya seeing..., or Lord Kṛṣṇa... Lord Caitanya, Kṛṣṇa—the same person. Kṛṣṇa is Supreme Person. Lord Caitanya is the same Supreme Person, but He's teaching us how to approach the Supreme Person. Just like sometimes my disciple, massaging my body, I take his hand and show him: "Do like this." Actually I am not massaging, but I am teaching him. It is not that I am massaging him. Similarly, when Kṛṣṇa comes as a devotee, Lord Caitanya, He shows the way how to approach Kṛṣṇa.
Kṛṣṇāya kṛṣṇa-caitanya-nāmne, namo mahā-vadānyāya kṛṣṇa-prema-pradāya te (CC Madhya 19.53). Lord Caitanya was worshiped by Rūpa Gosvāmī as the greatest munificent personality, or incarnation, because He was distributing kṛṣṇa-prema, love of Kṛṣṇa, very easily, so that this system was acceptable even by a child. So easy—by simply chanting and dancing. Here, Śukadeva Gosvāmī says kecid. Kecid means some fortunate person. It is not for all. For general people, one has to undergo the regular process of austerity, but one who knows, or one who is fortunate to have the mercy of Lord Caitanya and His disciplic succession, such person, kecid, someone...
And in the Bhagavad-gītā also it is said, manuṣyāṇāṁ sahasreṣu (BG 7.3): out of many thousands, hundreds of thousands men, manuṣyāṇām... Especially it is said manuṣyāṇāṁ. Manuṣya means human being. Manuṣyāṇāṁ sahasreṣu. God realization is not meant for the animals or persons who are almost animals, or animals in the shape of human beings. Animals. At the present moment, in the shape of human being, the population is animal, assembly of animals, because they do not know beyond the animal propensities.
The animal propensities... The animal is busy all day. The bird or any beast, rising early in the morning, they are busy: "Where there is some food? Where there is some sex? How to defend?" Then at night, "How to take shelter and sleep?" They have got their own arrangement. In the morning they know that "In that tree there are some fruits. Let us go there." So they fly. Āhāra: eating. As we go to office...
In your this New York City, thousands of people are coming from other islands by the ferry boat, waiting for the bus, going to the office. What is the purpose? The purpose is, "Where is food?" The birds are also going. So you have made ferry boat and nice—so many not nice, very nice; it is crowded always. But you have to come. For your bread, you have to go fifty miles, forty miles. But the birds are free to fly from one tree to another tree without any bus, without any ferry boat.
So the problem—eating, sleeping, mating—these problems are there amongst the living entities other than human being. Other than human being, they're many. If you take a census of the living entities in different categories, how many human beings are there in this city, how many sparrows are there, how many pigeons are there, how many dogs are there, how many trees are there, how many insects are there—they're all living entities—the number of other than human being will be far, far greater. The votes will be smaller in number. If the municipality, city, or the government said, "Everyone can vote, all living entities," then your vote will be lost, because you are very small in number.
Other living entities, they are very great. Even from the holes of your room, many thousands of ants will come. They are also living entities. Why don't you..., why do you say that they are not living entities? They are living en... They are also eating; you are also eating. They're also sleeping; you are also sleeping. They're also mating; you are also mating. They're also defending. The small ants, they are defending. They enter into the hole of your room. You do not know where the ants live, but they defend. You cannot capture them.
So these policies—eating, sleeping, mating and defending—they're in all living entities. That is the, I mean, the general law for every living entity. So if you are simply engaged in this eating, sleeping, mating and defending, then what is the difference? That is the defect of modern civilization. If you think that "We have very scientifically running on, so many slaughterhouses, eating purposes," so that is not advancement of civilization. The..., in that sense, a tiger is better situated. He hasn't got to keep a slaughterhouse. By nature, he has got nails and jaws: immediately attack and finish.
So these things are not advancement of civilization. Real civilization is how to understand your relationship with God, the supreme father. That is real civilization. You may learn it through any process. It doesn't matter. You learn your relationship with the supreme father through this Christianity. That's all right. Or through Vedic process. That's all right. Or Muhammadan, Koran process. That's all right. But you learn it.
Our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is not that we are out to make Christians Hindus, or Hindus Christian, or Muhammadan... No. Our propaganda is not that. Our propaganda is that "You are human being. Your business is to understand your relationship with God." That's all. You learn it. Anywhere you learn it, but you learn it. Otherwise you are simply wasting your time by animal propensities.
So you are nobody's enemy; you are everyone's friend, because we are showing the right way. Try to love Kṛṣṇa, or God. That's all. If you have got any own process, do it. Otherwise, please come to us. Learn it. Why one should grudge? Nīcād apy uttamāṁ strī-ratnaṁ duṣkulād api (Nīti-darpaṇa 1.16). Cāṇakya Paṇḍita says that you have to catch up the right thing from any source. It doesn't matter. He gives example: viṣād api amṛtaṁ grāhyam. If there is a pitcher of poison, but if there is some nectarine over the pitcher, you catch it, take it out. Don't take the poison, but take the nectarine. Amedhyād api kāñcana. If you find that in a filthy place there is some gold, take it out. You are not to take the filthy stool, but you take the gold.
Nīcād apy uttamāṁ vidyām. Nīcā. According to Vedic system, education has to be taken from high class, intellectual person like the brāhmaṇas. But if you find that a person who is not a brāhmaṇa—he's less than a brāhmaṇa, or even lower caste—but if he has got some nice education, just accept him as your teacher and learn. Not that "Because he's lowborn or not brāhmaṇa, I shall not take the education from him." The point is that you have to take the education.
And strī-ratnaṁ duṣkulād api. In India, still, the marriage takes place in equal family. The boy and the girl must be equally rich, equally cultured, equally educated. Equality. They find out. Even by horoscope, they test whether their astronomical calculations are also equal, so that after marriage they may not be unhappy. So many things, they are taken care of by the parents, and the marriage takes place. It is not that in youthful age the boy and girl mixes and... No. There are so many. But these things are now gone.
So the point is that they were calculating especially to accept a girl from a family, they must be equal. But Cāṇakya Paṇḍita says that if a girl is well qualified, strī-ratna... Strī-ratna means... Ratna means jewel. If a girl is just like jewel, very qualified, even she is born in low family, accept her. Nīcād apy uttamāṁ vidyāṁ strī-ratnaṁ duṣkulād api. Duṣkulād api means born of low family. Never mind. Don't care for her parentage. If she's qualified, accept her. There are many instances.
Similarly, if you are serious about understanding God, don't consider that "I am Christian," "I am Hindu," "I am Muslim," "Why shall I go this? Why shall I hear from Swāmījī?" If you are serious about understanding God, and to love God, then here is the nicest process. That is practical. There is no question of grudging, "Oh, why shall I go there? They are following some Hindu, Vedic scripture." No. There is no question of Vedic scripture. We..., our business is how to love God. That's all.
Just like many students come here to take higher education. As there is no consideration that "Why shall I go to America or Germany? They are different people. Oh, I don't take higher education..." No. Everyone goes. Similarly, if there is nice process to understand God, to approach God, you should take it. Don't be grudging. Take it. You'll be benefited. Kevalayā bhaktyā.
So kecid, not all. Someone who is intelligent, bhagavān, fortunate, they take to this process, kevalayā bhaktyā. Our process is kevalayā bhaktyā. Kevalayā means pure devotional service. No other adulteration or amalgamation. No. Simply to serve Kṛṣṇa. This is the program. From early morning at four o'clock till night, ten a.m., p.m., they are all engaged in Kṛṣṇa's service. This is called kevalayā. They have no other business.
So this process is recommended for all. That is the perfection of all religious process. Sa vai puṁsāṁ paro dharma yato bhaktir adhokṣaje (SB 1.2.6). That is first-class religion. Sa vai puṁsāṁ paro dharma. Paro means transcendental. There are two things: parā and aparā, superior and inferior, material and transcendental. There are material dharmas, religious process. For some material gain, generally, people go to church, go to temple, some material gain. Just like in your church you pray, "God, give us our daily bread." So daily bread is a material gain.
So these gain is already settled up. You'll get your bread. Just like the birds or beast, they are getting their bread without going to the church. They do not go to the church for asking God, "Give us our daily bread." The bread is there in the tree. They go and take as much bread as they like. Similarly, your bread is also settled up, either you go to the church or not go to the church. That is not a problem.
Nobody is dying on the street out of starvation. When you find somebody is lying dead on the footpath, the cause is some might have shot him down or by some other means he's killed. But you'll no..., you'll not find either a bird or a beast or an ant or human being died of starvation. Never. The food is already there. Don't bother. If you have to bother, if you have to tax your brain, just do it for Kṛṣṇa, or God. That is proper utilization of your time. Bread is already there. There is no scarcity of bread in the kingdom of God.
Tasyaiva hetoḥ prayateta kovido na labhyate yad bhramatām upary adhaḥ (SB 1.5.18). The Bhāgavata says one should try for that thing which is not available by traveling all over the universe. What is that? This is kevalayā bhaktyā, simple pure devotion. That is wanting. Nothing is scarcity. Everything is complete by the grace of God for everyone.
Just like even in jail the government supplies sufficient food. But why people come into the jail? Because they are not honest. Dishonest, criminal. Food is outside jail, inside jail. But what is the difference inside and outside? Inside jail, the men are criminals. Outside jail, they are not criminals; they are lawful.
Similarly there is spiritual world and material world, and everywhere God is providing food, either in the spiritual world or material world—for everyone. Eko bahūnāṁ vidadhāti kāmān (Kaṭha Upaniṣad 2.2.13). The Vedas says that one person, Supreme Person, He is supplying food to this many living entities, bahūnām. Eko bahūnāṁ vidadhāti kāmān. So for fulfillment of your material desires, you need not go to God. That is, that arrangement is already there.
But because we are foolish, we think... Not only think; sometimes we are put into difficulty by the laws of nature, starvation. Just like if you eat more, and then next two days you cannot eat; you have to starve. Similarly, the difficulty in this material world is that we take more than what we need; therefore we have created problems. Otherwise there is sufficient supply from God's side. There is no scarcity, no problem. We have created problems.
Just like in your country, sometimes I have heard that you throw away grains, thousands of tons of grains, in the water. That means you have enough food. But there are countries who are starving. So it could be adjusted by sending this food. Instead of throwing in the water, they could be sent to the starving countries. But people will not do that. The point is from God's arrangement, there is enough food within this planet. There is enough land, enough food-producing prospect. But we have arranged in such a way that in one part the people are suffering, and one part, they are throwing the grains in the water. This is not God's arrangement; this is our arrangement.
Therefore the problems are created by men. Now the so-called politicians, they create problems. Otherwise, by nature's ways, by God's way, everything is complete.
- pūrṇam idaṁ pūrṇam adaḥ
- pūrṇāt pūrṇam udacyate
- pūrṇasya pūrṇam ādāya
- pūrṇam eva avaśiṣyate
- (ISO Invocation)
This is Vedic song. God is complete. His creation is complete. His arrangement is complete. Simply we are creating disturbance. Therefore the real education to stop this disturbance is to make people Kṛṣṇa conscious, God conscious. Then all problems will be solved. Otherwise, by passing resolution in the United Nation it is not possible.
You do not know how to solve the problems. That is being discussed. Here Śukadeva Gosvāmī, in right place, he says kevalayā bhaktyā: simply by pure devotional service, kevalayā, only. Kecid kevalayā bhaktyā vāsudeva-parāyaṇāḥ. And who can do, kecid, that kecid, that person, who is that person? That is not ordinary person. That is vāsudeva-parāyaṇāḥ, one who is devotee to Lord Kṛṣṇa.
Vasudeva means Kṛṣṇa. Vasudeva, not others, not demigod parāyaṇāḥ. Vāsudeva-parāyaṇāḥ. Demigod parāyaṇāḥ, it cannot do that. Therefore it is particularly mentioned, vāsudeva-parāyaṇāḥ: whose business is only to satisfy Lord Vasudeva, or Kṛṣṇa. Such person. They can solve all the problems simply by taking to pure, unalloyed devotional service. Kevalayā bhaktyā. Aghaṁ dhunvanti.
We create trouble for our sinful activities. Just like I have already explained: there is enough food, but I gather more food, I stock it to make business so that when there is less supply the price will increase, and I shall sell at that time. This is my process. This is going on as economic development. There is grain—by God's arrangement, sufficient grain. But I am a man, I have got some influence. I have got some money, and I go to the bank: "Sir, I want to purchase one hundred thousand, millions of dollars' worth of wheat. So I have got ten thousand dollar. Please give me loan." Bank gives him loan. He purchases. He stocks it somewhere; nobody knows. The price is increased. There is scarcity.
Actually there is no scarcity, but it is the so-called economic law, man-made law, that creates scarcity. From God's side, there is no scarcity. Sufficient supply—more than what you need. But how this man can be checked from this evil propensity, to gather money and stock unnecessarily?
In India, in 1942, they created artificial famine by this process. Big men, they collected rice. The rice was selling at six rupees per mound. All of a sudden, within a week, it came to fifty rupees per mound. I have seen it. No rice was available in the market. People were hungry. They were purchasing. But the beauty is one American gentleman was at that time present. He remarked that "People are starving in this way. In our country, there would have been revolution." Yes. But the people of India are so trained that in spite of creating this artificial famine, they did not commit any theft, stealing others' property. They died peacefully.
Of course, this is a single instance. But the thing is that the problems are not created by God; it is created by us. Just like in the... One, my German Godbrother, he said that during the First World War... Perhaps some of you know. The politician created war and there was war. So people went to church. People means all women, because men were all in the active field. So they prayed, "My brother may come back," "My husband may come back," "My son may come back." But nobody came back, and they all became atheist: "Oh, there is no God." But the thing is that God does not say that "You create war, create problem, and for solution of the problem you come to Me." No. You have created your problems; you have to take the result.
But still, one who takes to the shelter of Kṛṣṇa, or God, his problems are solved. That's a fact. Here it is stated, kecid kevalayā bhaktyā. Somebody. Who? Vāsudeva-parāyaṇāḥ. Those who are advanced in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Vasudeva means Kṛṣṇa. Nārāyaṇa parāyaṇa, vāsudeva-parāyaṇāḥ, these words are there in the Vedic language.
In another place you'll find,
- vāsudeve bhagavati
- bhakti-yogaḥ prayojitaḥ
- janayati āśu vairāgyaṁ
- jñānaṁ ca yad ahaitukam
- (SB 1.2.7)
If you apply your devotional service to Vāsudeva, vāsudeve bhagavati... Vāsudeva is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, bhagavati. Vāsudeve bhagavati bhakti-yogaḥ prayojitaḥ (SB 1.2.7). If you apply, if you engage yourself in devotional service to Vāsudeva, then the result will be janayaty āśu. Āśu means very soon, without delay; janayaty, generated. Janayaty āśu vairāgyam. Vairāgyam means knowledge by which one becomes detached from this material allurement. That is called vairāgya.
Simply by employing yourself in devotional service you get the highest knowledge. That is vairāgya. Without vairāgyam... Jñānaṁ ca. Jñāna and vairāgya. Jñāna means knowledge, and vairāgya means detachment. This is required in this human form of life. As soon as you get right knowledge, that "I am spirit soul. I am not anything of this material world.
Somehow or other I have been in contact with this material world, and because I have desired to enjoy this material world in different capacities, therefore I am transmigrating from one type of body to another type, and I do now know since when this system began, but is still going on," this is called knowledge. To understand one's constitutional position and how he's suffering in this material world, that is called knowledge. Now that perfection of knowledge comes when one becomes vāsudeva-parāyaṇāḥ.
Therefore in Bhagavad-gītā it is said, bahūnāṁ janmanām ante jñānavān māṁ prapadyate (BG 7.19). After many, many births, sufferings, or cultivation of knowledge, when one comes to the right point, at that time he becomes vāsudeva parāyaṇāḥ. Vāsudevaḥ sarvam iti sa mahātmā su-durlabhaḥ. One who understands "Vasudeva is everything; He is the cause of everything," sarva-kāraṇa-kāraṇam (Bs. 5.1), sa mahātmā su-durlabhaḥ, that kind of mahātmā... You were asking yesterday about some mahātmā's instruction. But we are talking of this mahātmā who is vāsudeva-parāyaṇāḥ. He is perfect mahātmā.
So the mahātmā, as it is said... It is kevalayā bhaktyā, kecid kevalayā bhaktyā vāsudeva-parāyaṇāḥ. Similarly, vāsudeva parāyaṇāḥ means vāsudevaḥ sarvam iti sa mahātmā su-durlabhaḥ (BG 7.19). One who has known perfectly well that Kṛṣṇa, Vasudeva, is the source of everything, sa mahātmā su-durlabhaḥ, such kind of mahātmā is very rare. You can find out so-called mahātmās with great beard, mustaches and... But that is different mahātmā. That is not mahātmā. They are sometimes durātmā, because they want to encroach upon the rightful position of Kṛṣṇa. They want to become one with Kṛṣṇa.
Suppose if there is servant in your office, and if he tries to occupy your seat, would you like him, if you understand that your "This servant is trying to occupy my seat"? Similarly, any living entity who is trying to become God, he's not very much liked by God. He cannot become God, but this very endeavor to become God, to become a competitor of God, is not very much liked.
That person is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā as dviṣataḥ, envious. Tān aham dviṣataḥ krūrān kṣipāmy ajasram andhā yoniṣu (BG 16.19). Such persons, envious persons, are put into the hellish condition of life. They are envious of God's position. They want to occupy high position in this material world, and when they are frustrated, they think, "Now I shall occupy the position of God." But that will be also frustrated.
Nobody can become God. God is God, and living entity's living entity. He's supreme, He's infinite; we are infinitesimal. Our position is to serve God. That is our perfect position. That will make us happy. Not otherwise. Not by imitating how to become God. That is impossible. How you can become God? Yasyaika-niśvasita-kālam athāvalambya jīvanti loma-vilajā jagad-aṇḍa-nāthāḥ (Bs. 5.48). There are innumerable universes, and within the breathing period of Mahā-Viṣṇu so many universes are coming out by exhaling. And when He inhales, so many universes are dissolved within His body. So how we can become God? God is not so cheap.
Therefore sa mahātmā su-durlabhaḥ, one who is actually advanced in knowledge, mahātmā, who has accepted Vāsudeva, Kṛṣṇa, as the Supreme... Here it is also said that kecid kevalayā bhaktyā vāsudeva-parāyaṇāḥ, aghaṁ dhunvanti. They exterminate all kinds of resultant reaction of sinful activity. Aghaṁ dhunvanti. How it is? Now Kṛṣṇa, Vasudeva, personally says also that "You surrender unto Me." Sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja (BG 18.66). "You give up everything, all other occupation. You simply surrender unto Me." Ahaṁ tvāṁ sarva-pāpebhyo.
So this aghaṁ dhunvanti, He destroys all kinds of resultant activities of sinful life. Not he does; it is done by Kṛṣṇa. He says, ahaṁ tvāṁ sarva-pāpebhyo: "I'll help you. I will release you from all kinds of reaction. You simply surrender." Therefore vāsudeva-parāyaṇāḥ, one who is devotee, and simply engages in devotional service, aghaṁ dhunvanti, immediately He causes disappearance of all sinful action.
How? The example is given: aghaṁ dhunvanti kārtsnyena, wholesale, immediately. How? Nihārām iva bhāskaraḥ: just like fog is immediately, I mean to say, moved, simply by sunrise. Sunrise. Just like this is night, darkness. In the morning, as soon as there will be sunrise, there will be no more darkness. Immediately all thousands and millions of miles of darkness immediately moved. So try to make Kṛṣṇa sūrya, the sun, Kṛṣṇa, rise in your heart, and everything will be solved.
Thank you very much. Thank you.
Devotee (1): May I ask a question? When you were speaking, you started to ask..., you started to check all the people who are hoarding those grains, that economic procedure to produce famine. What is the way to check them? Is to keep them...?
Prabhupāda: To make them Kṛṣṇa conscious. If he knows that "These grains belongs to Kṛṣṇa. Why I am throwing it? There are so many living entities, they are part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa. Let me distribute," that is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. But he is thinking, "It is mine. These grains are mine. I am the proprietor." This is due to lack of Kṛṣṇa consciousness. If he knows that everything belongs to Kṛṣṇa, then he'll not misuse it. What is your question?
Devotee (2): If I have got a lot of foodstuffs, Śrīla Prabhupāda, I wish to distribute, but I'm afraid it will go bad, how could I distribute very quickly, very quickly? I want to distribute it all. I've gotten a lot of foodstuffs. I want to give it up. Can I offer it...
Prabhupāda: You don't find? You don't find men to distribute...
Devotee: Sometimes I get crates of lettuce. Could I offer a whole crate at once, and give a crate away to another Salvation Army, that they can give it away?
Prabhupāda: That is all right. Some way or other it should be distributed. It should not be wasted. Yes?
Guest: How do you feel about Rabindranath Tagore?
Guest: How do you feel about Rabindranath Tagore, the Indian poet, writer?
Prabhupāda: I don't follow. What is that?
Gopāla Kṛṣṇa: How do you feel about Rabindranath Tagore, the poet?
Prabhupāda: (laughter) (laughs) So you want my right answer? The answer is that anyone who has no Kṛṣṇa consciousness, he has no good qualification. Or he's a fool, in simple word. So we have to test whether one has got Kṛṣṇa consciousness, or God consciousness.
If one has no God consciousness, then according to Bhāgavata, harāv abhaktasya kuto mahad-guṇā (SB 5.18.12): those who are not Kṛṣṇa conscious, they cannot have any good qualification. Why? Manorathena asato dhāvato bahiḥ. Because they are..., they have no God consciousness means they do not know what is God; therefore their consciousness is either on the bodily platform or mental platform or intellectual platform. God consciousness is on the spiritual platform.
So those who are in the bodily platform, they're trying to satisfy the senses. And those who are on the mental platform, they're writing poetries and philosophical speculation to satisfy the mind. Similarly, there is intellectual platform. But soul is above intellect.
- indriyāṇi parāṇy āhur
- indriyebhyaḥ paraṁ manaḥ
- manasas tu parā buddhir
- buddhes tu yaḥ paraḥ sa eva
- (BG 3.42)
In the Bhagavad-gītā it is said that first of all you have got bodily conception: "I am this body." Generally people are in bodily concept of life. Therefore body means the senses. They want to satisfy the senses. And then mental platform, they are satisfying the mind by philosophical speculation or some poetry.
So Rabindra..., Rabindranath Tagore, he belongs to the mental platform. So one has to transcend the bodily platform, mental platform, intellectual platform and come to the simple spiritual platform. That is kevalayā. Kevalayā means simply, without any adulteration of bodily, mental and intellectual activities. That is pure devotional service.
So Rabindranath Tagore belonged to the mental platform—a little bit higher than persons who are on the bodily platform. But perfection of life comes when one comes to the spiritual platform. That we are giving directly, Kṛṣṇa. Immediately. That is the difference between Rabindranath Tagore and our activities.
Devotees: All glories to Prabhupāda! (end)