750221 - Conversation - Caracas

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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada



750221R1-CARACAS - February 21, 1975 - 90:05 Minutes


(Conversation with Metaphysics Society translated throughout by Hṛdayānanda)



Hṛdayānanda: ...Universal Brotherhood, which is a yoga group around Latin America, and they say they are trying to re-educate people and help bring understanding between different cultures. He's originally Mexican.

Prabhupāda: What is the name?

Hṛdayānanda: (Spanish)

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: Jose Maciel.

Prabhupāda: No, what is the name of the group?

Hṛdayānanda: The Great Yoga Fraternity, or The Great Universal Brotherhood.

Prabhupāda: So what is the purpose of this yoga?

Hṛdayānanda: He explained that they...

Jose Maciel: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) They want to make a synthesis of all the best practices of different cultures to present it to the people so they can have understanding without prejudice.

Prabhupāda: No, prejudice is different thing, but what is the science?

Jose Maciel: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda (translating) The basis of the movement is to get knowledge through the use of their faculties in order to raise the consciousness.

Prabhupāda: To which platform, the consciousness?

Jose Maciel: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) He said that they do not feel that they can go very high. They feel that they are in the hands of the great spiritual masters such as yourself and others also.

Prabhupāda: So do they aim to go to the highest point?

Jose Maciel: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) They feel the highest point is to understand themselves and...

Prabhupāda: So has he understood himself?

Jose Maciel: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) He said that to a certain extent he feels he has achieved this, but that the reality is unlimited, it cannot be described, and that it's more a certain consciousness or appreciation of life that is beyond words.

Prabhupāda: Not clear understanding.

Jose Maciel: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) He said that they try to have a clear understanding, but he must confess that he is limited.

Prabhupāda: He is limited. Then what is unlimited?

Jose Maciel: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) He says that the unlimited is that which always was, is, and always will be, and the limited is that which is in this material phenomenal world.

Prabhupāda: That means that limited is material, he says? And unlimited is spiritual?

Jose Maciel: (Spanish)

Prabhupāda: So what is the conception of the spiritual?

Jose Maciel: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) That which is, has been and will be, and which is not limited to form.

Prabhupāda: Yes. Limited to form. Then how he is unlimited?

Jose Maciel: (Spanish)

Śrutakīrti: (indistinct comments about guests arriving)

Hṛdayānanda: There are some other guests here, so I'm going to have to arrange things at this moment to bring the other guests in. So some of the devotees have to go in the other big room. There's room.

Śrutakīrti: Okay. Well, there's ten guests.

Prabhupāda: You can move that. So only three of them can remain. You three or four can remain. Others...

Śrutakīrti: There's ten people from the Metaphysical Society that have come to see you.

Hṛdayānanda: So Jagajīvana, Viraha, Mahāvir, Mahāviṣṇu, Pramāṇa...

Prabhupāda: Or if that hall is...? (break)

Hṛdayānanda: (Spanish)

Prabhupāda: Now let us distinguish what is limited or what is unlimited. I am asking these gentlemen.

Jose Maciel: (Spanish)

Prabhupāda: (aside:) Keep Bhagavad-gītā in hand, yes. That's it.

Jose Maciel: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) So he is saying that this material world is a combination of so many different elements, intelligence, so on and so forth. And in the center of all of this, the essence is that which is eternal. And this eternal thing cannot have any name because then it would be limited, and that would be a contradiction. And also it has no form.

Prabhupāda: No, that eternity..., that is nice, that the material world is temporary and the eternity is spiritual. That is clear understanding. Material elements, just like earth, water, fire, air, sky, mind, ego, intelligence; and the spiritual element is which is utilizing these material elements. Do you admit this?

Jose Maciel: Si.

Prabhupāda: The others? That is the distinction between matter and spirit. Just like this microphone, it is combination of earth, water, air, fire, like that. But the living being, he has utilized, he has combined this matter into this microphone. Is that admitted? Now, exactly like the microphone, the combination of matter and done by some living entity, similarly, the whole cosmic manifestation is combination of matter, and there is one living being, or the Supreme Being, who has combined them, and it is working. Is that admitted? So that is the difference between limited and unlimited, that I, you are living being.

We can also create something like this microphone or this big aeroplane. We have created. That is limited. But there is another one who has created innumerable planets, and that is floating in the air. Is it not? We are taking credit of becoming big scientist by creating one airship, 747, five hundred passengers carrying. How many we have created? Maybe hundred, two hundred. But there are millions and trillions of planets floating in the same way in the air, and those planets containing so many big, big mountains, ocean, and they are floating in the air. We can create limited things, but He can create unlimited things. Therefore we have got our limited brain, and He has got unlimited brain. Is that correct?

Jose Maciel: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) That suggests that He has a brain.

Prabhupāda: Yes. Thank you very much. (laughter) So as soon as He has got a brain, He is a person. Therefore God is person ultimately. Just like the government. Government is imperson, but the president is person. Similarly, the cosmic manifestation, the energy working, they are all imperson, but the brain behind this is person. That is the distinction between person and imperson.

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) You said that it is person ultimately. What does that mean, "ultimately"?

Prabhupāda: Ultimately, just like the government is imperson, but ultimately the president is person. The government is going on under the order of the president. Therefore impersonal government is not so important as the personal president is important. Another example: just like the sun and the sunshine and the sun-god—three things. The sunshine is impersonal, and the sun globe is localized, and within the sun globe there is sun-god. So in one sense they are all one, means heat and light, but the sunshine is different from the sun globe. When... Just like here is sunshine in this room, but that is not sun globe. Therefore simultaneously they are one and different. Is it clear? Any question about this?

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) He says that if God is a person, how can we understand, as there's a common saying, that "God is and also is not"?

Prabhupāda: God is person. That I have already explained, that the government is impersonal, the president is person, but the president is more important than the whole government. Just like a man in the court of the government is condemned to die. So there is no law in the government which can save him. But if the president shows him mercy, he can save him. Therefore, the president is more powerful than all the laws in the government. Therefore he is important. What does he say?

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) He said there are many examples where the laws of the government are superior to the president. For example, in America where Nixon was pulled down by the laws.

Prabhupāda: But one law... When he was president, he was powerful than the government. When he resigned from the presidency, then he became less important. This is a crude example. The another example is that the sunshine is universally spread, and the sun globe is situated in one place. So which is important: the sun globe or the sunshine? And just like this light is situated in one place and the illumination is spread. So what is important: the illumination or the lamp? The fire is one place, and the fire light and heat is expanded. So the fire is localized, and the light and heat is expanded many miles. So which is important: the fire or the heat and light? Therefore God is person, but He is not a person like you and me.

But His personality is expanded just like the heat and light of the fire is expanded. Similarly, whatever we see, that is the expansion of God's energy. Just like there are many big businessman. The man is person, but he is conducting hundreds of factories, big, big area. The factories are important or the man is important? If an ordinary person in this material world becomes so important and personal, you can just imagine how the person of God is important in spite of unlimited expansion of this material world. So what is his idea? The person is ultimately important. The impersonal feature is there, just like the impersonal feature, sunshine; but the sun globe, and within the sun globe there is sun-god. The sunshine is the expansion of the energy of the sun globe, and within the sun globe there is sun-god. So which is important, the sun globe, the sun-god or the sunshine? Which is important? The sunshine is important?

Guest: All of them.

Prabhupāda: All of them. That's all right, but comparatively, the sun-god is the source of everything. Therefore he is important. Therefore God is expanded by His energy. And God is the energetic. But comparatively, although there is no difference between the energy and the energetic, the energetic is more important than the energy. When there is sunshine, it is to be understood that sun globe is there and the sun-god is there. But in this sense the sun-god, the sun globe and the sunshine, they are not different—one—because every one of them has the same quality: heat and light. But still, here is the sunshine. It does not mean the sun-god or the sun globe is here. The sun globe is 93,000,000 miles away from us. So therefore, it is to be understood, they are simultaneously one and different. This is the philosophy.

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) He said that you said that God expands, but this implies that God modifies Himself or changes.

Prabhupāda: No. That is God. He can expand unlimitedly; still, He remains as He is. That is, means, unlimited. Just like if you have got hundred dollars in your pocket, then if it is spent one dollar, one dollar, one dollar, then ultimately you become zero. But about God it is said, pūrṇasya pūrṇam ādāya pūrṇam eva avaśiṣyate (Īśo Invocation). That means you take hundred dollars, still the hundred dollar is there. Similarly, God as He is, He can expand Himself in millions and millions separately; still, He is the same million. That is called God. If we take God in our conception, that "I have got hundred dollars. I spend hundred dollars, it is zero," but God is not like that.

God can expand Himself as God unlimitedly; still, He remains the same. There is another nice example. Just like you take one candle and you lit up another candle, you lit up another candle, another candle and millions of candle, but this candle remains the same powerful, and all the candles lit up, they are also same power. But for our understanding, we take the original candle as first candle, the next as second candle, the third, fourth, fifth, millions. But each candle is equally powerful, and the original candle is still there. So by this expansion, God does not diminishes. That is the meaning of God, and that is the meaning of unlimited.

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) How can we understand the difference between personality and individuality? And if God expands Himself in everything, then He must be inside all of His creation.

Prabhupāda: Yes, that is the difference, that God is situated in everywhere, but you are not situated everywhere. You are situated within your body; I am situated within my body. The pains and pleasure of my body you cannot feel; neither I can feel the pains and pleasure... But God is everywhere. Therefore He can understand what is your pains and pleasure, what is my pains and pleasure, his pains and pleasure. That is unlimited. That is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā. Find out, what is that verse? Kṣetra-jñaṁ cāpi māṁ viddhi sarva-kṣetreṣu bhārata. Kṣetra-jñam cāpi māṁ viddhi.

Hṛdayānanda:

kṣetra-jñaṁ cāpi māṁ viddhi
sarva-kṣetreṣu bhārata
kṣetra-kṣetrajñayor jñānaṁ
yat taj jñānaṁ mataṁ mama
(BG 13.3)

(reads translation in Spanish)

Prabhupāda: Read the purport. (break) Alma and Superalma. (laughter) God is Superalma. (laughter)

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) You have mentioned pain within the body. What is the origin of pain and the origin of imperfection?

Prabhupāda: Origin of pain means as soon as you come to the material world is the origin of pain. Just like the... It can be appreciated very nicely. Just like water. Water is sometimes painful and sometimes pleasing. Is it not? Do you agree or not? No, I just try to... Water is the same thing, but sometimes it is painful and sometimes it is pleasing, is it not? So how the same thing becomes pleasing and painful? This is circumstantial. The same thing is pleasing and the same thing is painful under different circumstances. Similarly, fire. Fire is sometimes pleasing and sometimes painful. The fire is the same, but circumstantially it becomes painful and pleasing. Just like in winter season the fire is pleasing, and in summer season the same fire is painful. Now, these feelings of pains and pleasure is due to this material body. Therefore the material body is the cause of pains and pleasure.

So if you do not get this material body—you remain in your spiritual body—then there is no more pains and pleasure. So that means the origin of pains and pleasure is to our attachment to this material body. If we can somehow or other get out of this material body, then there is no more pains and pleasure, or it is simply pleasure. Therefore in the Vedānta-sūtra it is said, ānandamāyaḥ abhyāsāt: "By nature the spirit soul is joyful." In the Bhagavad-gītā it is also said, brahma-bhūtaḥ prasannātmā na śocati na kāṅkṣati (BG 18.54): "As soon as you become spiritually self-realized, then there is no more pains and pleasure."

So pleasure means absence of pain. So in your spiritual identity there is no pain; therefore it is simply pleasure. Therefore our endeavor should be how to get our again original spiritual body. Spiritual body is there already. It is covered by the material body, but some way or other, if we stop the covering of the material body, then we are simply in pleasure. Therefore our only attempt in this human body should be how to revive our spiritual body. And that process is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That... Open that verse, janma karma me divyaṁ yo jānāti tattvataḥ, tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti mām eti kaunteya.

Hṛdayānanda:

janma karma ca me divyam
evaṁ yo vetti tattvataḥ
tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma
naiti mām eti so 'rjuna
(BG 4.9)

(explains in Spanish that he's reading from Śrīla Prabhupāda's Bhagavad-gītā) That's where all these verses are from. (reads translation in Spanish)

Prabhupāda: So if you simply understand Kṛṣṇa, then you revive your spiritual body.

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) How or why did this spiritual body become covered by the material body?

Prabhupāda: How your body is covered in a different dress when you go to the prison house? When one goes to the prison, he has to keep his dress separately and take the prison dress. So anyone who comes into this material world, he has to take a material body. This is the law. Unless you have got this material body, how you can feel pleasure in material sense enjoyment? Just like on a stage, if you are going to play, you have to take dress according to the play. Therefore this material body is compared with the dress. That is stated. Find out, vāsāṁsi jīrṇāni yathā vihāya.

Hṛdayānanda:

vāsāṁsi jīrṇāni yathā vihāya
navāni gṛhṇāti naro' parāṇi
tathā śarīrāṇi vihāya jīrṇāny
anyāni saṁyāti navāni dehī
(BG 2.22)

(reads translation in Spanish)

Prabhupāda: Just like we are sitting, ladies and gentlemen, here. So every one of us, we have got different dress. The dress is superficial, but as ladies and gentlemen, human being, we are one. Similarly, each one of us can have a different dress. So these living entities, they are in different dresses only, and the dresses are calculated 8,400,000 different forms. In the water there are 900,000 different dresses. Similarly, the trees and plants, the two million different types of vegetables. Jalaja-nava-lakṣāni sthavara-lakṣa-viṁśati (Padma Purāṇa). There are insects, there are 1,100,000 species. Similarly birds, there are ten million..., er, one million. Pakṣiṇāṁ daśalakṣanam.

Daśa-lakṣa means one million, one million types of bird. And three million types of beasts. And 400,000 forms of human being. In this way the living entity is passing through different dresses. And the best dress is this human form, because in this dress you can understand what is God, what you are, what is your relation with God, and then you can act and go back to home, back to Godhead. Therefore if this dress, in this dress... I am living being; you are living being. So we are in this human form of dress. We have got developed consciousness. If we miss the opportunity to understand God, then again we are put into the cycle of this evolutionary process. We should not therefore misuse this form like other forms. We should utilize it properly to understand the unlimited God and our relationship with God and act accordingly. That is perfection of life.

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) How can we relieve ourselves of material pain and live in spiritual pleasure?

Prabhupāda: Yes, as soon as you do not accept this material body, you have no connection with material pains and pleasure. (aside:) Get this light down.

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) He has understood from Bhagavad-gītā that Kṛṣṇa says that "As you approach Me, I present Myself." So in that sense can this movement be compared to also the consciousness of Christ, Christ consciousness?

Prabhupāda: Yes, there is no difference between consciousness of Christ or Kṛṣṇa, provided we follows them. Christ is speaking as son of Godhead, and Kṛṣṇa is speaking as God, so there is no difference. The truth—the father speaks or the son speaks—the truth is the same.

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) He understands that this Kṛṣṇa consciousness is the highest state of the mind. Now he requests that you explain to the people how one can achieve Kṛṣṇa consciousness living in one's own home with one's... In other words, for those who are outside the temple—they have their jobs and they live in their houses—how can they achieve Kṛṣṇa consciousness?

Prabhupāda: It is very easy. You chant Hare Kṛṣṇa. (laughter)

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) How do we chant Hare Kṛṣṇa?

Prabhupāda: That you are seeing. I am chanting: Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare, Hare Rāma... They all are chanting.

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) What is the meaning of this mantra, Hare Kṛṣṇa?

Prabhupāda: Hare means, "O the energy of God," and Kṛṣṇa, "O God, kindly accept me again. I am fallen in this material world." That's all.

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) She says that she sees it as a mantra, and from her point of view it seems like we're repeating this mantra over and over again, and it's something like hypnotism. For example, in some tribes there are different rituals, they are chanting different things, and she would like...

Prabhupāda: That is her opinion. She is not authority.

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) She would like an explanation.

Prabhupāda: This is the statement in the Bhagavad-gītā. Satataṁ kīrtayanto mām (BG 9.14). Find it out.

Hṛdayānanda:

satataṁ kīrtayanto māṁ
yatantaś ca dṛḍha-vratāḥ
namasyantaś ca māṁ bhaktyā
nitya-yuktā upāsate
(BG 9.14)

(reads translation in Spanish)

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) She wants to know if it's the same thing to chant oṁ or to chant "I am, I am."

Prabhupāda: "I am"? Where is that stated, "I am"? Where is the authority of "I am"?

Lady Guest: (Spanish) Que es, "Yo soy. Yo soy. Yo soy Dios." (Spanish)

Prabhupāda: He says directly... He says directly, satataṁ kīrtayanto mām (BG 9.14). Kṛṣṇa says, "You always chant My name." So why should we go to other things? God says that "You chant My name," so why should we go to others?

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) He says in this western hemisphere the supreme authority is the Saint Germaine, and he says that we should chant "I am." That's a quote from the Bible, meaning... Apparently when they asked God, "Who are You?" and God said, "I am that I am," or somethng like...

Prabhupāda: What you are?

Guest: (Spanish) "I am" es el nombre de Dios... (Spanish)

Prabhupāda: But what you are? "I am," you are thinking, but what you are? Do you know what you are?

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) I think they mean that it's like a quotation from God.

Prabhupāda: No, no. There must be your sense also. You are saying "I am," but if I ask you, "What you are...?"

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) "I am that I am."

Prabhupāda: But you do not know what you are. Then you are a nonsense. You say "I am," but if I ask, "What you are?" you cannot reply. Then you are a nonsense. You must explain what you are. Then "I am."

Lady Guest: Every time that we say "I am..."

Prabhupāda: But you must explain what you are.

Lady Guest: Yes, sir.

Prabhupāda: What is that?

Lady Guest: Every time that we say "I am," we must be conscious of what we are saying that we are, and it must...

Prabhupāda: That I am asking you, that what you are?

Guest: Why don't we look at it this other way? You say the name of God is Kṛṣṇa.

Prabhupāda: No, that is already separate; now another question. She says "I am." But I am asking—I am also "I am"—I am asking you, "What you are?"

Guest: May I explain? She says that God says that His name is "I am," as a name.

Prabhupāda: What is that?

Hṛdayānanda: He said that "I am" is a name of God.

Prabhupāda: God never says like that. Where it is? You must quote some authority. Where it is?

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) She said in the Bible, when some people were leaving and they said, "Who is sending them?" God said, "Tell them that it is the God of your fathers and that I am."

Prabhupāda: In the Bible it is said? Where it is?

Guest: Exodus, Moses, in Mount Sinai.

Prabhupāda: Anyone knows Bible it is said?

Śrutakīrti: It's in there, yes.

Prabhupāda: What is that?

Śrutakīrti: God says, "I am who am."

Prabhupāda: No, God said "I am," you say "I am"—that is all right. But God says "I am"—we can understand God. "I am" means God. But what you are?

Guest: Well, He said, "This is My name, and this is My name forever."

Prabhupāda: He says like that?

Śrutakīrti: That's the translation. That's the way it's translated, "I am who am."

Prabhupāda: So nobody knows Bible here? I am not very much conversant with Bible. But so far I know that Christ says that "I am the son of God." We can understand. So is there any difference? God says or Christ says that "I am the son of God." So the father is different. The father can say "I am," and the son also can say "I am," but everyone is "I." But what is the relation between this "I" and that "I"? That is wanted to know.

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) I am a particle of God.

Prabhupāda: That is this. Therefore I am particle; He is whole. Therefore difference. When God says "I am," and I say "I am," there is difference. I am particle "I am," and He is whole "I am." (laughter) Another, a millionaire, says "I am," and his servant says "I am," but both the "I's" are same? So God is great. He says "I am." He is great "I am"; and I say "I am," I am small "I am." Therefore this "I am" and that "I am" is different. This "I am," when I say "I am," and God says "I am," this "I am" and this "I am" is different. So not always I am the same. So far I am concerned, my identity, your identity is concerned, that is all right, one. But you "I am" and I "I am" not different.

The soul as soul, it is all right. But as particle, as whole, they are different. Yes, that is to be understood. God says "I am," means "I am the whole." And I say "I am"—"I am the particle." So therefore we should understand that when I say "I am," and God says "I am," they are different. (break) Your consciousness, your identification, my identification, my consciousness is different. And because we are different, therefore we are considering what is the ultimate goal. So in spite of difference, you can say "I am," I can say "I am," He can say "I am," but that does not mean there is no difference. My "I am," I am different from you "I am." This is to be understood. I can say "I am," you can say "I am," but this "I am" and that "I am" is different.

Guest: May I ask some question, please? Master, perhaps... It seems to me we have sort of misunderstood. These people is trying to inquire whether or not a sort of a mantram I would say invented here in the western hemisphere or a so-called master is or not good for realization of the self. But I am thinking more in terms of the question, it is perhaps more suitable to make the question a question, not affirmation. "Who am I?" perhaps, is the best of the mantrams, instead of affirming "I am," because we cannot realize who I am.

Prabhupāda: That's all right. But you are basing your knowledge "perhaps." Therefore you are imperfect. "Perhaps." That means you are imperfect. Your statement will not be accepted. Because you are imperfect, you say "perhaps," "maybe." So this is not knowledge. This is not knowledge; this is ignorance. As soon as you say "perhaps," "maybe," that means you do not know what is the actual thing is. Knowledge must be perfect. There is no question of "perhaps," "it may be." No, that is not knowledge. That is speculation. That is speculation. That is not knowledge. Because you are sitting "perhaps," therefore your knowledge cannot be accepted.

Guest: No, no, I'm just asking the question whether or not the right question could be: "Who am I?"

Prabhupāda: Yes, that's nice. That's nice. Therefore I say when you say "I am," and when I say "I am," I must understand who I am, you must understand who you are. That I am saying, that simply saying "I am" is not the final. Is not the final. Everyone is "I am," but he must know what I am, what that "I am." That is knowledge. If you blindly say "I am" and you do not know what you are, then what is the use of using "I am"? Therefore I ask, "What you are?"

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) She says that everyone has to decide.

Prabhupāda: Yes. That decision is required, that is knowledge. Simply saying "I am," everyone can say "I am." What is that? You must know what you are. That is required. Therefore I am asking, "What you are?"

Lady Guest: I agree. I am just mentioning that "I am" is the name of God, and then you add the adjective, and He will be established unto you.

Prabhupāda: No, no, no, no. "I am" is not the name of God. That is identification. That is the identification. God can say "I am," you can say "I am," but that does not mean you are God.

Lady Guest: Jesus Christ said that if you establish what you are after you say "I am"...

Prabhupāda: That's all right, everyone is saying "I am." Everyone is saying in ordinary dealing "I am." That is there. But that does not mean different "I am" is the same.

Lady Guest: You decree it. You decree what you are. You decree. With "I am," you decree. You make a decree.

Prabhupāda: No, no, that decree is already there. Just like in the Bible: "God is great." You are not great. Therefore you "I am" and God "I am," different.

Girl: Is it possible to sing the mahā-mantra for someone else who has died, and will it have the same effect?

Prabhupāda: If you say, "I am servant," and God says, "I am master," then it is perfect.

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) You said that when I say "I am," and when you say "I am," they are different. But she understands that the essence of everyone is the same.

Prabhupāda: That's all right. But still, in the essence, in the essence means the spirit—that God is the supreme spirit; I am the particle spirit. So far spiritual constitution is concerned, God and the living entity, one. Both of them are spiritual. But the power, God's power and your power, is not the same. It is said in the Bible, so far I remember, "God said, 'Let there be creation.' There was creation." Can you do that, "Let there be creation" and create something? Therefore when God says "I am" and you say "I am," that is different. So "I" means person. As person, He is also person. And "I" means person. You are also person. But that person and you person is different. He is almighty, all-powerful. You have no... You have limited power.

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: This is Māyāvādī philosophy. (translating) She's saying that when she says "I am," she doesn't mean "I" in the sense of the lower self but in the higher self. She means that...

Prabhupāda: That we have admitted. God is spirit; I am spirit. So both of them "I." But God's power and your power is not equal. God said, "Let there be creation." There was creation. But you say, "Let there be cāpāṭi," there will be no cāpāṭi unless you work. (laughter) You have to work for it.

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) God is the whole, and we are parts, and we are evolving to integrate ourselves with that whole.

Prabhupāda: That is all right. But as part... Just like the finger. You can say "part of the body," but it is not the whole body. So finger is working. Just like I am rubbing the head, the finger is... But the head is different, the finger is different; but if you take the whole thing, it is body.

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) She said without all the parts, it would not be the body, so we are all parts of the whole.

Prabhupāda: That's all right. Still, this is axiomatic truth. Part is not equal to the whole.

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) But we are in evolution.

Prabhupāda: Evolution? No, there is no evolution. The part is part eternally, and the whole is whole eternally.

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) So she's asking does that mean that one does not integrate himself with the whole when he becomes evolved?

Prabhupāda: No, you are already in the whole. What is that?

Lady Guests: (Spanish)

Prabhupāda: What is that?

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) She says, "Therefore we're all one."

Prabhupāda: One and different, that is our philosophy. Just like the one small screw is in the machine. So the whole is one, but the small screw is not equal to the whole machine. But the screw cannot be called the whole machine.

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) She said, "We are part of this whole."

Prabhupāda: Yes, that is, that is. We also. Mamaivāṁśo jīvabhūtaḥ jīva-loka sanātanaḥ. Find out.

Hṛdayānanda:

mamaivāṁśo jīva-loke
jīva-bhūtaḥ sanātanaḥ
manaḥ ṣaṣṭhānīndriyāṇi
prakṛti-sthāni karṣati
(BG 15.7)

(reads translation in Spanish)

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) She said they admit the same thing. They want to know if...

Prabhupāda: Same thing, but why he is manaḥ ṣaṣṭhānīndriyāṇi prakṛti-sthāni? Why he is struggling here? God doesn't struggle.

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) He said because there was a misunderstanding.

Prabhupāda: Who misunderstanding?

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) So he has said that we have given the name Kṛṣṇa to God, but actually there are so many names of God that it doesn't matter what the name of God is. It can be "I am" or it can be whatever it may be. Just like in India, he's understood that in India there are so many different names of God.

Guest: (Spanish)

Prabhupāda: So do you think that "I am" is the name?

Guest: (Spanish—gives different names of God)

Prabhupāda: That's all right. Allah is name, Kṛṣṇa is name, Jehovah is name. But "I am" is not name.

Guest: Si, es un nombre. Yahveh, Yahveh.

Prabhupāda: If I ask you, "What is your name?" you say, "I am." Is it very clear? (speaks to those near him as Hṛdayānanda discusses with man in Spanish:) Simply... "What is your name?" "I am." How foolishly they are.

Guests: (many speaking at once) (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: They thought we meant why are we struggling here? But I explained no...

Prabhupāda: No, no, I mean to say, they said that "I am" is the name of God. So is it practical that if I ask your name, "What is your name?" "I am."

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) He said that say, for example, suppose that his parents were crazy and gave him the name "I am"...

Prabhupāda: But there is no business in crazy. We have no business with crazy. (some people are laughing and some are talking) All right, what is the time now? We have no business with crazy. This is practical. This is practical. If in the court the judge inquires, "What is your name," and if you say "I am," he will immediately say, "He is a crazy man. Get him out." (several people start talking at once; Hṛdayānanda trying to explain further) This kind of knowledge has got no value. No, no. If he does not like to accept Kṛṣṇa as the name of God, he has got his name, say, Jehovah or Allah. That is all right.

Lady Guest and many others: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) They're saying it's not that they don't like Kṛṣṇa. They like Kṛṣṇa very much, but they are saying that everything is...

Prabhupāda: No, no, they must have some name of God. "I am" is not the name. That is false conception.

Guests: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) They say it's something very personal.

Prabhupāda: No. When you ask name, that is personal.

Lady Guest: God?

Prabhupāda: God means controller. God is not name. Just like the president, Mr. Ford. That is name, and president is the controller. So every controller has got name. So why the supreme controller will not have any name? That is ignorance.

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) She's saying that Christ said that "I am the way," and so on and so forth.

Prabhupāda: Well, every guru is the way to approach God. That's a fact. But he has got his name, "Christ." So why do you deny this name? "Christ says"—that means either you take him anything, but he has a name, Christ.

Lady: No.

Prabhupāda: No? What is this? (laughter) That is your conception. It is not Bible's conception. Bible says the son of God is Christ. You can create by mental concoction anything, but if you refer to the Bible, the name is Christ. Everyone says, all Christians says, all Christians says, "the Jesus Christ." Why do you deny it?

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: Māyāvāda. (translating) She says that everyone has the Christ within him.

Prabhupāda: No, we don't agree with all these things.

Lady Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) If we agree with Buddhist consciousness?

Prabhupāda: No, no, whatever consciousness may be, I say that in the Bible it is said that son of God is Christ. His name is Christ. How you can deny the name? No, no, that is their interpretation, "Christ means 'I am.' " They want to interpret in their own way. There is name. How can you deny it?

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) He is saying that you have said that we have a material body and also a spiritual body. So he wants to know if the spirit and matter are born simultaneously, or if the matter is born, the material body is born, and later the spirit comes.

Prabhupāda: No, from spirit the matter has come out. Just like God said, "Let there be creation." So God was there and creation later on. So God is spirit and creation is matter.

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) He has understood from what he thinks is Indian philosophy that you cannot give God a name because that would be limiting God.

Prabhupāda: No, you don't give God name, but God is named by His action. Just like Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa means all-attractive. Kṛṣṇa means all-attractive. That is the quality of God, that He is all-attractive. Similarly, Allah. Allah means "the great." So God is great; therefore He is called Allah. So actually God has no name, but according to His action, He has name. That's all right? You can...

Hṛdayānanda: (thanks guests for coming)

Guest: (Spanish)

Hṛdayānanda: (translating) He thanks you very much, and he considers it a great privilege to have been here today.

Prabhupāda: Thank you for your coming here.

Devotees: Glories to Śrīla Prabhupāda. (end)