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000000 - Lecture SB 06.01.15 - Unknown

His Divine Grace
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

??????SB.? - was labelled February 22, 1973, AUC


kecit kevalayā bhaktyā
aghaṁ dhunvanti kārtsnyena
nīhāram iva bhāskaraḥ
SB 6.1.15

So purificatory process. Our disease is... Try to understand very patiently. The living entity, he is under diseased condition. What is that diseased condition? Accepting birth, death, old age and disease. This is diseased condition. We living entity, we are eternal, pure. Because we are part and parcel of God, therefore... God is the purest. Paraṁ brahma paraṁ dhāma pavitraṁ paramaṁ bhavān (BG 10.12) . Kṛṣṇa when realized... Arjuna, when he realized the teachings of Bhagavad-gītā , he accepted Lord Kṛṣṇa that "You are Parabrahma. You are the Supreme Brahman." We are all Brahmans, but He is Supreme Brahman, paraṁ brahma. We are īśvaras or... It is very now popular to become God. We are God. That's all right. But the Godhead, He is Godhead. Therefore we use the word "Godhead," "Back to Godhead," not "Back to God." That God is everyone. That's a fact. Just like there are clerks and head clerk in the office. There are many clerks, hundreds of clerks, but one of them is the head clerk. Similarly, the atheistic persons, they are declaring themselves as God. We accept that we are all god—not theoretically, practically. God means controller. So everyone controls. So in that sense everyone is god. Everyone is opulent. In his relative position, everyone is opulent. I have got one thousand, you have got ten thousand, he has got hundred thousand. But we have got something. So in that way everyone is opulent. Everyone is god. I control my children, my family. Or bigger than me, my boss, he controls a big establishment, a factory, big factory. And similarly, the president, he controls the state. So relatively, everyone is controller, god; but he is not supreme controller. That is not possible. Supreme controller is Kṛṣṇa. Īśvaraḥ-paramaḥ-kṛṣṇaḥ (BS 5.1) . Therefore it is stated in the śāstra, "The supreme controller is Kṛṣṇa." Kṛṣṇa also says in the Bhagavad-gītā , mattaḥ parataraṁ nānyat kiñcid asti dhanañjaya: (BG 10.12) "My dear Arjuna, above Me, there is nobody." Above Him, there is nobody. Therefore He is the supreme controller or Supreme Lord, Parameśvara.

So anyway, our controlling business is also interruptable. I want to control. Just like this janma-mṛtyu-jarā-vyādhi (BG 13.9) . I want to control death, disease, but I cannot. Everyone is trying. As soon as one is diseased, he tries to control it. He goes to take help from other, the physician, but he cannot. Therefore he is not supreme controller. And at the same time, I want something, but it is not happening. Just like I want to eat something palatable, but due to my diseased condition, I cannot eat. Forbidden apple. But I have the desire to eat it. So because I am not supreme controller, because I am in diseased condition, therefore my business is to cure the disease. Cure the disease—that is sane man's business. If you are infected with some disease, you should try to cure it. That is your business. If you don't care of it, then you are nonsense. You are not very intelligent man. If you keep yourself always in diseased condition, that is... You are not very intelligent man. Similarly, we are part and parcel of God, a small God, but under material conditions we are subjected to birth, death, old age and disease. We should understand this. This foolish brain cannot understand, that... This question must rise: "Why I am put into this tribulation? Why I am in distressed condition? I do not want it. Why I am diseased? I do not want it. Why I become old? I do not want it. Why I am subject to death? I do not want it." These questions do not arise. Arise, but they cannot make any solution. That is less intelligent.

But there is solution. And that solution is possible in this life, in this human form of life, intelligent life, advanced consciousness, not in the animal life. By nature's evolutionary process, we come, gradually, through the 8,400,000 forms of life, we come to human life. And this human life is meant for curing this material disease. What is that? Birth, death, old age and disease. But people are so unintelligent that they do not care for it. They are simply busy in producing some material, temporary comfortable situation of this body. That's all. They are wasting time. Dīna gelo, rātri gelo... That we are sleeping at night. Divā cārthehayā rājan, nidrayā naktam. At night we sleep or indulge in sex life, and in daytime we earn money. And as soon as we get money, we spend it for the comforts of the world. This is our business. Nidrayā hriyate naktaṁ vyavāyena ca vā vayaḥ SB 2.1.3 . Vyavāyena ca vā vayaḥ, divā cārthehayā rājan kutūmba-bharaṇena vā. This is the position. At night we are wasting time. The so long we sleep, that is wasting time. The less we sleep... And even a very, very big businessmen, they sleep very less. Very, very big politician, they also sleep less. So because sleeping, the part of our life spended sleeping that means wasted. So we should control our sleeping, not to sleep more. That is one of the business. Because our life is very short, and if we spend our time sleeping... Suppose half sleeping and half working. Then half our life is spoiled simply by sleeping. Then other business are there. In old age we cannot do anything. In childhood we cannot do anything substantial. So childhood means up to twenty years we spoil. And then, when we get old, we spend another twenty years-forty years. And suppose we live eighty years. So eighty years, out of eighty years, another twenty years by sleeping, then we get twenty years. (laughter) But our business is very responsible, that we have to solve all the problems of life. This is human life. This is human life: to solve the problem, not to increase the problem.

But at the present moment people are being taught to increase the problem. Increase the problem... Just like I was discussing, they have increased the problems so much so that even in the womb of mother they are being killed. Just imagine how much we have increased the problem. Even there is no security... In India they say, security position, that one is sleeping on the lap of his mother. That is best security. Because the child, when he is sleeping on the lap of his mother, if there is some danger, mother will first of all come forward to save the child. That is natural. But the problems of life has so become complicated that even mother is killing child. Just imagine. The present position of the civilization, that there is no question of security, even on the lap of the mother, and what to speak of otherwise. But the business of human life is to solve the problems of life, but we have increased the problems of life. This is the civilization. Why? Because we are not taking to the process of human life. The process of human life is mentioned here: tapasya, austerity. Tapasā brahmacaryeṇa śamena damena ca (SB 6.1.13) . This is the process to make solution of the problems of life. And if we do not do that, then we implicate ourself in more problems. But they do not know. They are so foolish that they do not know the problems of life, how to solve it. And here in the Śrīmad-Bhagavat, Śrīmat Śukadeva Gosvāmī has given you that "You do this." Tapasā brahmacaryeṇa: (SB 6.1.13) "Accept austerities, penance. Observe brahmācārya, celibacy. Control your mind. Control your senses, God consciousness." Dharma-jñā: "Become dhīra, sober." These are the things to be learned in human life. And if we simply, like animals, jump like dog, then what is that civilization?

So two alternatives. One alternative, this step by step; another alternative is, as it is suggested here, kecit kevalayā bhaktyā SB 6.1.15 . There is one step, one side, that you observe austerities, penance, and control your mind, senses, and become religiously minded, sober, so many things. Another: kevalayā bhaktyā, simply by engaging yourself in devotional activities. Devotional activities. Devotional activities mean the first beginning of devotional activities is to hear, śravaṇaṁ. Śravaṇam. Just like you are kindly hearing. This is the beginning of devotional life. Śravaṇaṁ kīrtanaṁ viṣṇoḥ smaraṇam SB 6.1.15 . Śravaṇam about whom? Sravanam not of politics. If there is political meeting, thousands of men will go to hear. That is also śravaṇam. Therefore in the śāstras it is recommended, śravaṇaṁ kīrtanaṁ viṣṇoḥ, to hear about Viṣṇu, Kṛṣṇa, not other thing. If you say, "Yes, I am śravaṇam. I am hearing a politicial meeting," not that hearing. Śravaṇaṁ kīrtanaṁ viṣṇoḥ. Everything pertaining to Viṣṇu.

These are nine items: śravaṇaṁ kīrtanaṁ smaraṇaṁ vandanaṁ dāsyaṁ sakhyam ātma-nivedanam arcanaṁ vandanam, like that. There are nine items. Śravaṇam, hearing, chanting. Hearing and chanting, kīrtanam. Smaraṇam, thinking of Kṛṣṇa. Anyone can think of Kṛṣṇa. Here is Kṛṣṇa's form. You see and get the form within your heart and think of Kṛṣṇa, meditate. Where is the difficulty? There is no difficulty. Śravaṇaṁ kīrtanam. You hear about Kṛṣṇa, Bhagavad-gītā , Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam . You haven't got to do anything. And kīrtanam also. Hearing means somebody is speaking and others are hearing. There must be somebody chanting. Just like I am chanting, I am speaking—you are hearing. So śravaṇaṁ kīrtanam. And as soon as we hear and chant, we remember also, smaraṇam. The vandanam, offering prayers. Everyone goes to the temple, to the church, offers prayer. That is also bhakti. Śravaṇaṁ kīrtanaṁ viṣṇoḥ smaraṇaṁ pāda-sevanam (SB 7.5.23) . Then arcanam. Just like these boys and girls are engaged in worshiping the Deity. That is called arcanam. Vandanaṁ dāsyam: to become servant of God, to cleanse the temple, to work for God, for Kṛṣṇa, dāsyaṁ. Sakhyam, to accept Kṛṣṇa as friend. Ātma-nivedanam, and offering everything to Kṛṣṇa. These are nine items. You can accept nine, eight, seven, as you like, as you can conveniently, either the whole nine items or one, two, three, four—any. Even if you accept one, your life will be perfect. If you simply take this śravaṇam, if you simply come to this temple and hear about Kṛṣṇa, your life will be successful. It is so nice. Even if you don't do anything, simply if you kindly take the trouble of coming here and just try to hear about Kṛṣṇa sincerely, then your life will be successful. This is called bhakti. Kevalayā bhaktyā. Simply by executing devotional service And there are nine different types of devotional services, out of which, even if you accept one, your life is successful. This is called kevalayā bhaktyā. Just like Parīkṣit Mahārāja. At the last stage of his life he was cursed by a brāhmaṇa boy to die within seven days. So within seven days he had to prepare himself for the next birth. So he was little perplexed, and all the great saintly persons, sages—because he was emperor of the world—so they came. They consulted. It was decided that "You hear Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam the seven days." That is The Śukadeva Gosvāmī spoke, and he, listened from Śukadeva, and he became perfect within seven days. Therefore in India they observe this Bhagavat-saptāha. That is simply official. Actually, nobody hears very seriously.

So śravaṇam is so perfect also. Parīkṣit Mahārāja attained perfection simply by hearing seven days. Similarly, Śukadeva Gosvāmī, he also attained perfection by speaking seven days to Parīkṣit Mahārāja. Śravaṇaṁ kīrtanaṁ viṣṇoḥ smaraṇam (SB 7.5.23) . Prahlāda Mahārāja, he was put into so many difficulties by his atheist father, Hiraṇyakaśipu, but he was simply remembering Nārāyaṇa, Kṛṣṇa. Because he was a child, five years old, how he can fight with his father? His father was the greatest demon, powerful, and he was against the child. So he used to simply think of Kṛṣṇa, smaraṇam. Pāda-sevanam: Lakṣmī, goddess of fortune, she simply engaged herself in massaging the lotus feet of Viṣṇu. Pāda-sevanam. Arcanam: Pṛthu Mahārāja, he engaged himself in the arcana. Vandanaṁ. Dāsyam: Hanumān. Akrūra, Akrūra, he simply offered prayers to Kṛṣṇa. Akrūra came to Kṛṣṇa Balarāma to take Them to Mathurā. So he got salvation simply by offering prayers. Vandanaṁ dāsyam. Hanumān, he simply offered his bodily service to Lord Rāmacandra. He got perfection. So śravaṇaṁ kīrtanaṁ viṣṇoḥ smaraṇaṁ pāda-sevanam, arcanaṁ vandanaṁ dāsyaṁ sakhyam... Arjuna. Arjuna simply kept friendship with Kṛṣṇa. He got perfection. Sakhyam.

śravaṇaṁ kīrtanaṁ viṣṇoḥ
smaraṇaṁ pāda-sevanam
arcanaṁ vandanaṁ dāsyaṁ
sakhyam ātma-nivedanam
(SB 7.5.23)

Ātma-nivedanam, giving everything to Kṛṣṇa. That is Bali Mahārāja. He did not do anything. He simply... Whatever he possessed, he gave it to Kṛṣṇa, "Take it," his everything. He promised three feet land, and by two feet land all his possession was covered. Then Kṛṣṇa asking that "Where to keep the another feet?" He said, "Yes, sir, there is place. Just keep it on my head. That's all." So by three feet he lost everything. He lost not everything, but he gained everything, and Kṛṣṇa agreed that "You are so sacrificing. Now I shall remain as your doorkeeper here, stand here always to save you from all dangers." So by giving to Kṛṣṇa, by serving Kṛṣṇa, by loving Kṛṣṇa, nobody is loser. Nobody is loser. Everyone is gainer. Everyone is gainer. So therefore we should take this process.

Therefore it is recommended here, kecit kevalayā bhaktyā SB 6.1.15 . Somebody, without undergoing so much austerities, penances and practice in yoga for controlling mind, the senses... It is not possible for the time being, in this age. People are so fallen that they cannot take to these processes. But they can take to this bhakti process. That is the easiest. Kecit kevalayā bhaktyā vāsudeva-parāyaṇāḥ SB 6.1.15 . Bhaktyā means to become devotee of Vāsudeva, Kṛṣṇa. Vāsudeva-parāyaṇāḥ, aghaṁ dhunvanti. Agham means all sinful reaction of life. Not only one life. Life after life, we have done. So that can be solved in this human form of life simply by taking to this Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Aghaṁ dhunvanti kārtsnyena. In toto, wholesale, kārtsnyena, wholesale. How? Nīhāram ivaṁ bhāskaraḥ. Just like the whole atmosphere is surcharged with fog; nobody can see. The other day we were going from Calcutta to Māyāpur, and so many accidents took place. Yes, actually we could not see even five feet away what is there. And two sides motors are running. Nobody could see. There were so many accidents. Even for few hours' fog, there were hundreds of accidents. Just see. So this is fog. In the sea also... I have got experience when I was coming from India to New York. When there was fog in the sea, then immediately ship would stop and horn, "Onh, onh, onh," Because nobody can see where is another ship. There may be collision there. Similarly, it is dangerous to fly also. The fog is so dangerous. Nowadays people are engaged in the sky, in the water, in the land. Everywhere they have got engagement. But as soon as there is fog, everything is calamity, everything is dangerous. So here this same example is that. When there is fog, it is very difficult to move. But the fog can be immediately moved if there is sunrise. Sunrise is there. If this temperature of the sun becomes little more, then immediately fog is dissipated. Nīhāram iva bhāskaraḥ.

Then he further explains,

na tathā hy aghavān rājan
pūyeta tapa-ādibhiḥ
yathā kṛṣṇārpita-prāṇas
SB 6.1.16

Now, there is two alternatives offered. One side is austerity, penance, controlling the mind, controlling the senses, and giving in charity. So many formulas are given, the tapa-ādibhiḥ. Because the other side, the tapasya, therefore tapa-ādibhiḥ, "beginning with tapasya, austerity." So Śukadeva Gosvāmī says, "My dear King," na tathā hy aghavān rājan pūyeta tapa-ādibhiḥ, "if one is practicing the other side, namely tapasya, brahmācārya, celibacy, austerities, yogic principle, controlling the mind, the senses, charity, so many things, so they are also purifying, but they are not so strong. They are not so strong as this devotional service is strong." That is tapa-ādibhiḥ. Na tathā hy aghavān rājan pūyeta tapa-ādibhiḥ, yathās kṛṣṇa-arpita-prāṇaḥ. One who has dedicated his life to Kṛṣṇa, he is very strong. Kṛṣṇārpita-prāṇaḥ. Yathā kṛṣṇārpita-prāṇas tat-puruṣa niṣevayā. Or dedicated his life to Kṛṣṇa or Kṛṣṇa's representative. He is very strong than the other man who is undergoing austerities, penances, and He is also making progress, certainly. But better process is this: one who has surrendered completely to the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa or his representative. Kṛṣṇārpita-prāṇaḥ tat-puruṣa-niṣevayā.

But you cannot surrender to Kṛṣṇa without serving the representative of Kṛṣṇa. Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura said, chādiyā vaiṣṇava-sevā nistara paveche kebā: "Without serving the representative of Kṛṣṇa, nobody can approach Kṛṣṇa." It is not possible. It is not possible. There are many instances. Mahāt-pāda-rajo 'bhiṣekam. Niṣkiñcanānṁ, niṣkiñcanānām... There is one verse—just now I forget. The thing is that without being blessed by the representative of Kṛṣṇa, nobody can take interest into Kṛṣṇa. That is another secret. Yasya prasādaḍ bhagavat-prasādaḥ. The Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura says that "By the mercy of the spiritual master, one can get the mercy of Kṛṣṇa." Yasya prasādāt, "by whose mercy, Kṛṣṇa is merciful." Niṣkiñcanānāṁ pāda-rajo 'bhiṣekam. So this is also stated here, that surrender to Kṛṣṇa means surrender to Kṛṣṇa's representative. If you surrender to Kṛṣṇa, then also Kṛṣṇa's first mercy is that He will send His representative. If anyone is serious to surrender to Kṛṣṇa, then Kṛṣṇa will help him from within and without. Within, as Supersoul, He will help, and He will dictate that "You go to this person." Guru kṛṣṇa kṛpāya pāya bhakti-latā-bīja CC Madhya 19.151 . When there is combined mercy, both Kṛṣṇa and Kṛṣṇa's representative, then you are successful. Guru kṛṣṇa kṛpāya pāya bhakti-latā-bīja. Two things. Here also it is stated that one may practice, as the austerities, penances, brahmācārya, celibacy, but better position is to take to devotional service and surrender to Kṛṣṇa through His representative. This bhakti.

sadhrīcīno hy ayaṁ loke
panthāḥ kṣemo 'kuto-bhayaṁ
suśīlāḥ sādhavo yatra

Atra hetu sadhrīcīnaḥ samicinaḥ. "It is quite deserving," sadhrīcīnaḥ. Sadhrīcīnaḥ hy ayaṁ loke panthāḥ kṣema akuto-bhayam. This path, this devotional path, is very secure and very deserving, especially in this age. It is deserving, all the ages. But in other ages people were very long living. Just like tapasya: tapasya is not so very easy thing. Tapasya, it takes too long time. But our life is very short in this age. In the Satya-yuga people used to live for 100,000's of years. In the Tretā-yuga, ten times reduced: ten thousand years. In Dvāpara-yuga, ten times reduced: one thousand years. And the Kali-yuga, again ten times reduced: hundred years. So our life is very short. Where is the time? Therefore to accept this process of devotional service is very deserving, sadhrīcīnaḥ. Sadhrīcīnaḥ sādhavaḥ yatra. Sadhrīcīno hy ayaṁ loke panthāḥ kṣemo akuto-bhayam. Akuto-bhayam, there is no fear. It is completely secure. Once you take to devotional service, you become directly protected by the Personality of Godhead. If you remain a devotee of Kṛṣṇa, then Kṛṣṇa says, kaunteya pratijānīhi na me bhaktaḥ praṇaśyati: (BG 9.31) "My dear Arjuna, you just..., you can declare, anyone who has become My devotee, he will never be vanquished. I will give him all protection." And Kṛṣṇa says also,

sarva-dharmān parityajya
mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja
ahaṁ tvāṁ sarva-pāpebhyo
(BG 18.66)

"I shall give you protection."

So Kṛṣṇa is the supreme powerful. He is giving assurance. Therefore, instead of accepting the other way, to practice penance and becoming, observing brahmācārya and so many other things—by one stroke, simply by surrendering to Kṛṣṇa, you will achieve all the benefits, all other benefits. Yasyāsti bhaktir bhagavaty akiñcanā sarvair guṇais tatra samāsate SB 5.18.12 . By becoming a devotee, automatically he is practicing penances. Just like here in these devotees, our society. This is penance. They are observing brahmācārya, no illicit sex. That is brahmācārya. Or there is no sex at all. The sannyāsī, brahmacārī, they observe completely celibacy life. And those who are gṛhastha, they have regulated sex life. That is brahmācārya. And as soon as you become brahmacārī, your mind becomes controlled. As soon as your senses are engaged in Kṛṣṇa's service, your senses are controlled. The automatic yogic process you attain. If you simply try to control the senses, it is very difficult. But if you give the senses engagement, then it is automatic. Because senses must work something. Just like a child. A child at home without engagement, he will simply spoil things, so many. But if you send him to school, give him some engagement, he will be peaceful. Similarly, our senses, we cannot stop the activities of the senses. That is not possible. Just like some foolish people say that "Become desireless." How you can be desireless? I am a living man, living being. I must desire. I cannot be desireless. But if the desire is transformed to Kṛṣṇa... Suppose instead of desiring that "I shall have a very big skyscraper building," if I desire that "I shall have a very big, big temple for Kṛṣṇa." The same desire. But as soon as you desire to have a big skyscraper building, that is material. And as soon as you desire to construct a big temple for Kṛṣṇa, that is spiritual. Just like as you get a nice rose flower: as soon as you desire that you shall enjoy it, this is material. And as soon as you desire, "Oh, this is nice flower. I shall go and offer it to Kṛṣṇa," that is spiritual. Simply change the desire. There is no question of desirelessness. Why? We cannot be desireless... That is not possible. Change the... Purify the desire. Purify the desire.

Therefore bhakti means sarvopādhi-vinirmuktaṁ tat-paratvena nirmalaṁ CC Madhya 19.170 . Nirmalam. We have to cleanse the desire. We have to cleanse our seeing. Now our eyes want to see some beautiful thing. Now, if we become accustomed to see Kṛṣṇa beautifully decorated, nicely decorated, nicely dressed, then we forget other, so-called material beauty. So the activities of the eyes, to see beautiful thing, is not changed, but it is purified. That is bhakti. Nothing has to be changed or nothing has to be stopped, but the process has to be changed. Nirbandhe kṛṣṇa-sambandhe yukta vairāgyam ucyate. We cannot be desireless. We cannot be inactive. That is also not possible. We must be active—but active for working for Kṛṣṇa. Then it is devotional life. That is being taught in Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, that it is not simply negation. Simply negation will not help you. There must be some positive occupation. So we say, "Do not do this, but do this." We say, "Do not eat meat," but we say, "Eat Kṛṣṇa's nice prasādam, halavā ." So he forgets meat-eating. This is our process. We give immediately alternative. You dance. You don't dance in the naked club; dance in the Kṛṣṇa's temple. The dancing is there, but is purified. In the club there are also girls are dancing and boys are dancing. Here also, girls are dancing and boys are..., but they are dancing for Kṛṣṇa ecstasy. So nothing is stopped. This is bhakti. Kṛṣṇa consciousness means you have to simply change your consciousness. Consciousness is there. At the present moment our consciousness is polluted. Just like water. Water is always pure. But when it is... Just like rain falls from the sky. You catch. Before touching the earth, you catch the water, it is distilled water. It is distilled water. Sometimes they catch, they hold the water. It is distilled water. You take so much time to distill water. Rain is distilled water, purified, without any contamination. But as soon as it touches this surface of the earth, it becomes muddy. Similarly, we are also... When we come from Kṛṣṇa, we come pure, but as soon as we touch these material modes of nature, we become muddy, impure, the consciousness. Therefore, as muddy water can be filtered, settled up and filtered and again it becomes clear, similarly, this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is that however muddy you may be, by Kṛṣṇa consciousness you will be picked up and you will come again clear, crystal like water. This is the process.

So there is nothing to change, nothing to give up. Simply it is clearing process. Sarvopādhi-vinirmuktam CC Madhya 19.170 . This clearing process is we should we free from the designations. Just like these boys, American and European or Australian, Japanese, so many... We have got all kinds of students, but they are now devoid of all designations. They are not thinking that "I am American." They are not thinking, "I am Indian." They are thinking always, "I am Kṛṣṇa's servant." This is purification. This is purification. Sarva upādhi. Upādhi. This is designation. I am not American, nor Indian. This is body. This is circumstantial. I am, ahaṁ brahmāsmi, and Kṛṣṇa is Supreme Brahman, and I am Brahman, His eternal servant. This is self-realization. This is called mukti. Muktiḥ hitvānyathā rūpaṁ sva-rūpeṇa avasthitiḥ. This is mukti. Now we are anyathā rūpam. I am thinking Even there are so many human beings here, suppose in Auckland Somebody is thinking, "I am Indian." Somebody is thinking, "I am American." Somebody is thinking, "I am Englishman." So upādhi, that is upādhi. But if we give up this upādhi, designation, that "I am not this..." Just like Caitanya Mahāprabhu taught that "I am not a brāhmaṇa . I am not a kṣatriya . I am not a vaiśya. I am not a śūdra. I am not a sannyāsī. I am not a brahmacārī ." These are all upādhi. Then what You are, Sir? Gopī-bhartuḥ pada-kamalayor dāsa-dāsānudāsaḥ: CC Madhya 19.170 "I am the servant of the servant of the servant of Kṛṣṇa." This is called upādhi- less, or free from all designation. When we become free from all designation, then, in that purified state, if we engage ourself in Kṛṣṇa activities, that is our success of life.

Thank you very much. [break]

Devotee (1): ...somehow or other...

Prabhupāda: You are not outsider. (laughter) First of all outsider. You have got chance. So? No question from outsider? Now you can ask.

Devotee (1): If someone has a desire to do something so that...

Prabhupāda: Do something for Kṛṣṇa?

Devotee (1): For Kṛṣṇa. But he begins to realize it's still tinged with a lot of personal gratification...

Prabhupāda: Therefore he should consult spiritual master. The guide is there. Then it is all right. He should take sanction from Kṛṣṇa or Kṛṣṇa's representative. If he wants to do something, that's good, but whether that doing is right or wrong you have to know it from Kṛṣṇa or His representative. Is it clear or not? Yes.

Devotee (1): How can one reach the point where he knows that a particular type of service...

Sruta-kirti: How can one reach the point where he knows a particular type of service...

Devotee (1): ...will please the spiritual master?

Madhudviṣa: He wants to know how to find out how to please the spiritual master with one service.

Prabhupāda: The spiritual master has given you so many things to do. Do it. First of all finish that. First of all finish sixteen rounds, observe the regulative principles. First of all... First of all finish this duty. And neglecting this duty, what you can do further? If you cannot finish sixteen rounds chanting, you cannot observe the regulative principles, then what else you can do? First of all finish this duty. Be expert in finishing, executing these duties. Then ask for another duty. And if you finish these duties, automatically Kṛṣṇa will give you intelligence. Teṣāṁ satata-yuktānāṁ bhajatāṁ prīti-pūrvakam (BG 10.10) . One who is actually engaged in the service of the Lord, buddhi-yogaṁ dadāmi tam, "I give him intelligence." Kṛṣṇa will give you intelligence. You will be able to talk with Kṛṣṇa from within if you become sincere. If you cannot execute the preliminary duties, then how you can execute further duty? There is no question.

Madhudviṣa: This is a problem, I think, with many devotees. They have a difficulty distinguishing between their own speculation and the inspiration...

Prabhupāda: Then they should stop speculation. That is their first duty. Devotional life means stop speculation.

Madhudviṣa: Well, what is inspiration then?

Prabhupāda: Inspiration? That inspiration is there. That is very good, that "I shall do something for Kṛṣṇa." So whatever duty is assorted to you or allotted to you, you first execute that duty.

Devotee (2): How important is formal initiation?

Prabhupāda: Formal initiation means to accept, officially, to abide by the orders of Kṛṣṇa and His representative. That is formal initiation. Officially accept, "Yes, sir, I shall accept. I shall do whatever you say." This is initiation, official acceptance of the job. That's all. Now, you formally accept, and if you do not do the duties, then where is the question of other function? There is no question. Initiation means this is the beginning of accepting the orders of Kṛṣṇa and His representative to carry out. This is the beginning. That is initiation. Just like if you enter in an office establishment, so you accept the terms of service. That is initiation. Then you go on serving, you become promoted, you get salary increase. You become recognized. You become officer. You become big officer, like that. That very word initiation suggests, "This is the beginning." Dīkṣā, dīkṣā. Di... Divya. There are two words, divya-jñāna. Divya-jñāna means transcendental, spiritual knowledge. So divya is dī, and jñānam, kṣapayati, explaining, that is kṣa, dī-kṣā. This is called dīkṣā, dīkṣā, the combination. So dīkṣā means the initiation to begin transcendental activities. That is called initiation. Therefore we take promise from the disciple that "You chant so many times," "Yes, sir." "You observe these rules and regulations," "Yes, sir." That is initiation. He has to observe; he has to chant. Then everything comes automatically. In the beginning he is faulty; then how he can make progress? There is no question of in..., what is called? What you were asking?

Madhudviṣa: Inspiration.

Prabhupāda: Inspiration. What is that inspiration? If you have got inspiration, first of all execute this. Inspiration there is. Because we are, by nature, we are servant of Kṛṣṇa, we want to serve. But that should be regulated. That should be regulated. That is initiation. Yes?

Madhudviṣa: Śrīla Prabhupāda, you were speaking about Śravaṇaṁ kīrtanaṁ viṣṇoḥ smaraṇam (SB 7.5.23) , that any one of these principles, if executed, is sufficient. Now, some devotees may take this to mean that they simply can chant Hare Kṛṣṇa and don't have to do anything else like temple duties or readings or...

Prabhupāda: That means he is not chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa. Because if he is actually chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa, he must be enthusiastic to serve Kṛṣṇa more and more. This is an excuse. Utsāhān dhairyāt tat-tat-karma-pravar... He must be very enthusiastic. Therefore we have limited. If you are chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa, if you are so advanced, then chant Hare Kṛṣṇa twenty-four hours. But he will sleep. (makes snoring noise) (laughter) So in the name of chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa, you will sleep. And if you are actually chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa, you will be enthusiastic, "Oh, I shall serve. I shall..." That is effect. Phalena paricīyate. We have to see by the result. He should be enthusiastic more and more. Ānandāmbudhi-vardhanam. It will increase. The service attitude will increase. Therefore we have given all the nine items sometimes here, sometimes there, sometimes here, but all Kṛṣṇa's. Actually recommended, all the nine, but even one is accepted sincerely, that also give perfection. That is another thing. But actually, we should accept all the nine items: Śravaṇaṁ kīrtanaṁ viṣṇu smaraṇaṁ pāda-sevanam, arcanam... And All right. Yes?

Devotee (3): How is it possible that Tulasi-devī is a pure devotee, what we might call a plant?

Prabhupāda: That you cannot know in your impure state. You just become pure. You will understand. (laughter) Just like a physician, he can understand another physician, what is his position. The layman, what he can understand? If you say, physician, "Oh, how I can understand this physician?" How you can understand? You are not a physician. You become a physician, then you will understand what kind of physician he is. So when you become devotee, you will understand what kind of devotee is Tulasi. So long you are not devotee, you cannot understand. Don't expect. Therefore we have to accept the authority. That is beginning. Śāstra says, "Tulasi is the greatest devotee of Kṛṣṇa." We have to accept, that's all. Authority. How she is so great devotee, that you will understand when you become a devotee. You come to the platform; then you will understand, not before. Now chant. ( kīrtana ) (Prabhupāda leads prema-dhvāṇī ) (end)