670106 - Lecture CC Madhya 21.62-67 - New York

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His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

670106CC-NEW YORK - January 06, 1967 - 28:27 Minutes


kṛṣṇe jānāñā dvārī brahmāre lañā gelā
kṛṣṇera caraṇe brahmā daṇḍavat kailā
(CC Madhya 21.62)

So we have been discussing, yesterday, Brahmā visiting Kṛṣṇa as four-headed Brahmā. He was little proud that, "I am the original, first creature of this universe. I have got four heads, four hands." The material nature, the influence of material nature, is like that. Even Brahmā, who is supposed to be in full knowledge of Vedic literature . . . he is the father of Vedic literature. He handed over the Vedas to Nārada.

Still, that ahaṅkāra, "I am something," is there even in Brahmā, and what to speak of ordinary living entities like us. This material conception of life is like that: "I am" and "mine." Ahaṁ . . . ahaṁ mameti (SB 5.5.8). Ahaṁ mameti: "I am something, supreme," and "It is mine." This is the material disease. So, these things are sometimes exhibited by great īśvaraḥ, controller, like Brahmā, like Śiva. They sometimes exhibit material frailties. They are not fallible in that way, but they teach us by their behavior that even personalities of the most exalted position, they are also sometimes subjected to the spell of illusory energy. The idea is that we should be very careful. Nobody should think that he is beyond the range of material energy. At any time we can fall down.

But if we stick to the Kṛṣṇa consciousness, always thinking of Kṛṣṇa as our protector, and take shelter unto His lotus feet sincerely, then even if we fall down sometimes, not intentionally, but accidentally—because we are practiced to so many bad things, so it may be possible that even I take full care, still, the influence is so strong, I may fall down—Kṛṣṇa excuses such kind of falldown. Excuses. But if we intentionally think, "Oh, because I am in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, because I am engaged in devotional service, oh, I can do any nonsense and Kṛṣṇa will excuse me," no. Not like that. Kṛṣṇa will excuse you, provided you do not do anything intentionally wrong.

We should be . . . generally, those who are in Kṛṣṇa consciousness fully, they have—I have already explained to you—they have got all these twenty-six qualification. That is the perfection of Kṛṣṇa consciousness. When we see the twenty-six qualification in full present, that means he is perfect in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. If those qualities are not present, that means there is still, I mean to say, that touch of contamination of material nature.

Harāv abhaktasya kuto mahad-guṇā (SB 5.18.12). So far those who are not in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, their material academic qualification has no value, no value, however M.A., Ph.D. he may be. Why? Mano-rathena asato dhāvato bahiḥ. Because the materialist without Kṛṣṇa consciousness . . . that is a materialist. One who has no conception of God, or Kṛṣṇa, and his proper relationship with Him, one who does not know the science of God, he is called materialist.

Materialist does not mean something extraordinary personality. One who does not know about Kṛṣṇa, he is materialist. And one who makes progress in the science of Kṛṣṇa under regulation and under principles, they are called spiritualist. So materialist, the disease is that harāv abhaktasya kuto mahad-guṇā mano-rathena asati dhāvato bahiḥ (SB 5.18.12).

Unless we take to Kṛṣṇa consciousness fully, we shall hover over the mental plane. You will find so many philosophers, doctors of philosophy, they can go on speculating, mental plane, manaḥ, but actually they are asat. Their activities will be seen in materialistic. There is no spiritualistic realization. To more or less degree, this material conception is everywhere. Ā-brahma-bhuvanāl lokān. Kṛṣṇa says: ā-brahma-bhuvanāl lokān (BG 8.16). Beginning from the lowest planet up to the Brahmaloka, they are all affected. So similarly Brahmā, he thought himself, "Oh, how great I am that in my jurisdiction Kṛṣṇa, my Lord, has come, and He is playing like a boy, cowherd boy. How much great I am. Kṛṣṇa has come just like cowherd boy." You see? Therefore he . . . kṛṣṇe jānāñā dvārī brahmāre lañā gelā. Kṛṣṇa inquired, "Which Brahmā has come?"

Now the doorman takes him inside, and he enters Kṛṣṇa's room, offers his respect. Kṛṣṇera caraṇe brahmā daṇḍavat kailā. Now, if Kṛṣṇa is ordinary person, as the foolish rascals think, that avajānanti māṁ mūḍhā (BG 9.11), "The foolish rascals deride at Me as ordinary man," how it is possible that Brahmā is offering his respect to Kṛṣṇa? If you think that, "These are all stories . . ." Not stories. Do you think Caitanya Mahāprabhu is speaking some stories, some fabricated stories, to get His followers? Do you think like that? No.

Lord Caitanya, such a great devotee . . . apart from His feature of incarnation, take Him as a great devotee, learned. He was vastly learned, and nobody could surpass Him in His learning in those days. He defeated . . . when He was a sixteen-years-old boy, He defeated the greatest scholar, Keśava Kāśmīrī. His name was Keśava. He came to Navadvīpa from Kashmir to talk with scholars. Formerly, as there . . . as nowadays you have got—what is called?—champion, champion. What is the meaning of champion?

Devotee: Best.

Prabhupāda: Best. Just like in sporting, there are champions in . . . chessboard playing champion or so many departmental champion. This is coming from time long, long ago. Similarly, there were champions of scholars. Just like in modern days a sportsman will challenge, and if he is victorious all over the world . . . similarly, in those days there were competition of the great learned scholars, championship. So this Keśava Kāśmīrī . . . at least in India, that was the system even five hundred years before. So Keśava Kāśmīrī, he was a paṇḍita.

Now, India was united on the strength of religious culture and Sanskrit language. All over India the lingua franca, the language, common language, at least for the scholars, not for the common man . . . the common man could speak any language—Hindi, Parsi or Bengali, Oriya, Telugu, so many. There are so many languages. In every district you will find some language. But that was not taken into consideration.

When I mean—when education is concerned, every student all over India, they would take education in Sanskrit. Sanskrit language was the . . . so the . . . our present government, they have introduced the state language as Hindi. There are so many protests and so many quarrels. They would have done better if they have . . . they would have introduced Sanskrit language, as it was previously. So the Sanskrit language was the one, and the culture was Vedic. Therefore, there was no disunion. Every part of the world—of the country—in India, the same system. He may be a Bengali, he may be a Maharastrian, he may be a Gujarati, or he may be an Odia, there are so many provinces . . . but the culture was the same.

Another unity was, that sacred places were distributed all over India. Just like, Gayā, a sacred place, that is situated in Bihar, and sacred place Banāras, that is situated in Uttar Pradesh. Vṛndāvana is situated on the border of Uttar Pradesh and Punjab.

Similarly, Kāśmīr and Punjab also . . . South India, Rāmeśvaram, in Himālayan province . . . Haridwār. In this way, all these provinces are distributed and it still it is going on. The provincialism is among the educated side. So far the mass of people are concerned, they don't know what is province. They travel from one province to another, they don't require any visa, they don't require any passport. So, that was very nice.

So the Sanskrit scholar, Keśava Kāśmīrī, he came from Kashmir to challenge the learned scholars in other parts of the country.

Four celebrated places where highly, I mean to say . . . educated scholars were there. One was at Benares. Benares, it still, it is considered to be the center of Sanskrit scholars' place.

Similarly Navadvīpa, where Caitanya Mahāprabhu was born. And in Bihar there was a place, Darbhaṅgā. That is also a scholarly place. So Benares, and Berhampur, Berhampur in East Bengal near Dhaka. So, some of the places in India, they are very famous for learned scholars. Still they are continuing.

So, Sanskrit scholars would come in such celebrated places, and they would challenge for arguing on the śāstras. So, the rule was, that two party will argue, and the defeated party will become the disciple of the victorious party. That was the system. So Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu, when He was sixteen years old, this Keśava Kāśmīrī came to Navadvīpa to challenge. In other places he was victorious; he became champion. And then, at last, he came to Bengal, Navadvīpa. So, that scholarly discussion will take place.

Now notice is already given that, "Keśava Kāśmīrī has come here," and he had an umbrella, and the four sides was covered with gold, and the one side is remaining. As soon as he becomes victorious in Navadvīpa, that side also will be covered with gold. So the people of Navadvīpa, learned scholars, they first of all thought that Nimāi Paṇḍita . . .

Caitanya Mahāprabhu was known as Nimāi Paṇḍita, because He was boy, sixteen-years-old boy, very learned scholar, especially in logic He was very learned scholar, logician. He was so . . . even in His sixth year, with His class friends He will establish one theory; again He will cut it; again He will establish; again He will cut it; again the same, in His own way. He was so learned scholar, logician.

So, the elderly scholars of Navadvīpa, they designed that, "This Nimāi Paṇḍita should be forwarded first to talk with Keśava Kāśmīrī, because He is a boy. But He is very nice boy. He is very learned boy. If He becomes victorious, then our Navadvīpa will be glorified that, 'Keśava Kāśmīrī is defeated by a sixteen-years-old boy in Navadvīpa.' And if He . . . if Nimāi Paṇḍita is defeated, then we shall go forward. Then we shall say: 'Oh, you have defeated a boy. Let us . . . come to us.' So we get second chance." So that was the plan, Bengali plan, (chuckles) second chance. First chance, second chance. So it was arranged like that, that Lord Caitanya, Nimāi Paṇḍita, would talk, would discuss with Keśava Kāśmīrī.

So one evening . . . in the . . . still, during summer season on the Ganges side in the evening there are so many ladies and gentlemen, especially gentlemen; ladies do not come. Nowadays come. Formerly they did not come out. So they came for strolling. And Nimāi Paṇḍita, although He was sixteen years old, He had many students. Formerly the system was that as soon as a boy becomes little grown up and learned, he will also teach some students.

Catuṣpāthī. So although all the students were of the same age, but still, Nimāi Paṇḍita was chief of them. So He was discussing with His own students on the bank of the Ganges. So Keśava Kāśmīrī came there for strolling, and he understood that, "Oh, here is a boy, Nimāi Paṇḍita. He is to talk with me. So what this boy will talk with me?" He thought like that.

So when he came before the assembly of the students, he talked with Nimāi that "Are You Nimāi Paṇḍita?" "Yes, sir. Who are you?" "I am Keśava Kāśmīrī." "Oh. Come on, come on. Sit down." The introduction was there. They sat down. And then Nimāi Paṇḍita requested, "So, I have heard that you are a very vastly learned scholar, and from your feature also I can understand, so best thing will be that you compose some poetry in praising Ganges."

Because they were on the bank of the Ganges, and it is a Hindu system . . . Ganges water is considered very sacred, and there are many prayers of Ganges. Patita-dhāriṇī gaṅge. Patita-dhāriṇī gaṅge: Ganges is the shelter for all the fallen souls. She can deliver. Śaṅkarācārya had composed many poems on the Ganges. There are many poetry on the Ganges. So Keśava Kāśmīrī was very learned scholar. He, without any hesitation, he began to compose Sanskrit verses in praising Ganges. So he composed about one hundred verses immediately while talking.

So out of the one hundred verses, on the sixty-fourth verse Lord Caitanya pointed out, "Will you kindly explain this line? I am little in difficult to understand." "What is that?" There was a word, bhavānī-bhartā. Bhavānī-bhartā. Bhavānī . . . means "Husband of Bhavānī." So Caitanya Mahāprabhu pointed out that Bhavānī . . . "Bhava means Lord Śiva, and bhavānī means Lord Śiva's wife, and bhartā means husband. So this bhavānī word itself indicates that she is the wife of Lord Śiva, and why you have stated again bhartā, again 'husband'?" This is called dvirukti-doṣa.

Sanskrit language is very scholarly language, reformed. You cannot deviate even a line, even a letter in the sense, in the poetry, in the writing. There are all regulation, strict regulation, grammatical and metric and so many things. So nobody can surpass it, not that . . . just like nowadays we write poetry—one line is three hundred miles, one hundred, (chuckles) and only one mile. That sort of poetry will not be allowed in Sanskrit. (chuckles) You cannot adjust three hundred miles and one mile. No. It must be very symmetrical. That is Sanskrit language.

So (chuckles) the Paṇḍita, Kāśmīrī Paṇḍita, became surprised. The Kāśmīrī Paṇḍita became surprised, "How is that? This boy understood? He was a student of grammar, and He is pointing out literary defects?" Oh, he became very much . . . much surprised. Then he admitted. He was learned scholar. He admitted his fault, and he said: "How is that? I have heard that You are a student of grammar, and You are pointing out defects in literary construction?" "No. Yes. Yes, sir. I am a student of grammar. But I have heard it from great scholars like you. Of course, I do not know, but I have heard it." He very submissively replied that, "I am not scholar, but I have heard it from scholars that this is the technique." He could understand that, "He is a very clever student."

And there were many others, He pointed out defects. He thought in the beginning, "Oh, He is asking to compose some poetries. I shall show Him how can I compose poetry, hundreds." He did not care so much that, "He will point out so many defects in them." But when he saw it, he became sorry. And then the students, Lord Caitanya's students, as it is usual, they began to laugh. Oh, Caitanya Mahāprabhu at once told them, "Don't laugh in that way."

So this Keśava Kāśmīrī went to his, I mean, his home, and he was a devotee of Goddess Sarasvatī. He prayed that, "Mother, I was never defeated in such a way. What offense I have made unto your lotus feet that I am defeated before a boy?" So then, Goddess Sarasvatī presented herself in dream and informed that; "This boy is not ordinary boy. You are fortunate that you are defeated before Him. Best thing will be that you go and surrender unto Him, and you'll be profited." So this Keśava Kāśmīrī became a student of Lord Caitanya, and this is the . . . so these puffed-up things are going on in every field of activities. But Lord Kṛṣṇa is always greater than everyone. So here Brahmā is asking.

kṛṣṇa mānya-pūjā kari' tāṅre praśna kaila
ki lāgi' tomāra ihāṅ āgamana haila?'
(CC Madhya 21.63)

As he offered his respect to Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa received him, "Oh, welcome, Brahmā. I am very glad to see you. What is the special message that you have all of a sudden you come here?" So:

brahmā kahe—'tāhā pāche kariba nivedana
eka saṁśaya mane haya, karaha chedana
(CC Madhya 21.64)

"Yes, Sir, I shall speak for what for I have come here. But I have got some doubts. First of all, You kindly clear these doubts." Then "What is that doubt?" Eka saṁśaya mane karaha chedana.

'kon brahmā?' puchile tumi kon abhiprāye?
āmā ba-i jagate āra kon brahmā haye?'
(CC Madhya 21.65)

"So You have asked, 'Which Brahmā?' Sir, I am surprised. Is there any other Brahmā than myself in this world?"

śuni' hāsi' kṛṣṇa tabe karilena dhyāne
asaṅkhya brahmāra gaṇa āilā tata-kṣaṇe
(CC Madhya 21.66)

"Kṛṣṇa smiled. 'Oh, yes, there are so many Brahmās. I am calling them.' " So innumerable Brahmās appeared before Kṛṣṇa.

koṭy-arbuda mukha kāro, nā yāya gaṇana
(CC Madhya 21.67)

So unlimited. He had four faces, four heads, and there many Brahmās came with hundred thousands of faces. That was exhibited by Kṛṣṇa.

So this instruction is that we speak of God as unlimited, but when He makes some manifestation of unlimitedness, we take it in a different way. But actually that is not the fact. If God has unlimited potency, He can do anything and everything. That is unlimitedness. We should not restrict God with our speculative mind, that "How is that? Oh, four-headed Brahmā, then thousand-headed Brahmā? How it is possible?" Yes.

If Kṛṣṇa likes, if God likes, He can make millions-of-headed Brahmā. Otherwise there is no meaning of unlimited. He can show anything and everything. We should accept. So, these things are going on. We shall discuss later on, tomorrow. Hare Kṛṣṇa.

Any question? (end)