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680309 - Lecture SB 07.06.03-4 - San Francisco

His Divine Grace
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

680309SB-SAN FRANCISCO - March 09, 1968 - 31:42 Minutes

Prabhupāda: . . . a little endeavour and it will come. So you haven't got to engage your major portion of time for this purpose. Because according to your body, the necessities are already there. How there are . . .? How can I believe that there is already the necessities of my life? He is giving a very nice example, that sarvatra labhyate daivāt (SB 7.6.3).

Sarvatra means everywhere. If you become a forest animal, your sense gratification paraphernalia is there. If you become an aquatic animal, your sense gratificatory paraphernalia is there. If you are a man, that is also there. If you are American, it is there. If you are Indian, you are there. If you are aborigine, it is there. Sarvatra. If you are ant, if you are an animal or a worm within the earth, oh, the food is there. The rat, the cockroaches, they live within the drain; still, the food is there.

So Prahlāda Mahārāja says, sarvatra labhyate. In any form of life, either you become man, god or dog or cat or anything, your sense gratificatory . . . what are those sense gratificatory things? Now, you require to eat something. Either you are man or animal or whatever you may be, you require to eat something. So eatables are there. Then you require a place to sleep.

Oh, the that place is also there. Just like we have got so many friends—some of them present here—they have practically no apartment. But still, they have got place to sleep. They have got place to sleep. Nobody is without sleeping. There must be some place to sleep. And there must be something, somewhere for eatables.

So the arrangement for your eating, arrangement for your sleeping and arrangement for your mating, so all these arrangements are there by nature. So deha-yogena, the sense gratification which you want for the particular type of body as you have got, that is already arranged as much as . . . the example is duḥkham ayatnataḥ (SB 7.6.3)—as much as the distress from which you are destined to suffer are also there. The distress also . . .

According to law of karma, we create our own distress and happiness. So as much as the happiness are there, similarly, the distress is also there. Nobody tries for distress. Duḥkham ayatnataḥ. Duḥkham means distress. Nobody tries to invite distress in his life, but distress overcomes him. Similarly, the quantity of happiness or the measurement of happiness, that is already predestined by nature—is already there.

So You should not bother . . . because they are all atheistic boys. They are after material improvement, economic development. The atheist class of men, they are always busy for economic development. They have no idea of spiritual existence or spiritual advancement of life. That is the distinction between atheistic life and theistic life. Atheistic people are not concerned, not a drop they are concerned for advancing in spiritual life.

So because he was speaking amongst the boys who came from atheistic family, he said, "My dear friends, don't bother yourself for developing your economic condition, because that is already arranged there. You better utilize your short time, short span of life, for understanding Kṛṣṇa, or be Kṛṣṇa conscious." That is his version. Tat-prayāso na kartavyo yata āyur-vyayaḥ param (SB 7.6.4): "Because you have got limited span of life."

The other day I explained that suppose you are destined to live for fifty years. Now, you cannot make it fifty-one years or fifty years one month by spending any amount of money. Just like a man is dying. He's very rich man. The doctor says that "He will die at such-and-such time." And if somebody says, "My dear doctor, kindly increase the time little more.

You say that 'He will die at 10 o'clock at night.' Now make it next day 10 o'clock. We have got some business," so that is not possible. That is not possible. If you spend millions of dollars and bribe the doctor, "Please extend the life. We have to get him sign some document before he dies," "Oh, that is not possible."

Therefore just try to understand, the duration of life, how much it is valuable. It is not in your power to increase even by moment. Therefore Prahlāda Mahārāja says that "Don't spoil your life for so-called sense gratification. That is already arranged there.

Don't spoil your valuable life simply for sense gratification." Just see. These instructions are to be noted by human being, that we should not spoil even a second of our life uselessly. Uselessly. How? The . . . how we spend our life? Na cen nirarthakaṁ nītiḥ, ka ca hānis tato 'dhikā.

Just the other day I told you about the version of Cāṇakya Paṇḍita: āyuṣaḥ kṣaṇa vidhvāṁsi kalpānta-sthāyino guṇaḥ. The Paṇḍita, the Cāṇakya Paṇḍita says that this āyuḥ, the duration of life, we do not know when we shall end. It is assure it will end. But kalpānta-sthāyino guṇaḥ, but if you are Kṛṣṇa conscious, then your that spiritual qualification will continue to eternity.

There are many instructions in Vedic literature. So here also the same thing is repeated. Tat-prayāso na kartavyo yata āyur-vyayaḥ param: you should not try to spoil your life, spoil your valuable life, for something which is not very much beneficial for you. And what is that thing beneficial? Self-realization. Self-realization, "What I am."

This is the product of meditation. If you want to meditate, meditation means to attempt to understand oneself, "What I am." That is real meditation. Meditation does not mean that . . . of course, this voidness, meditation in voidness, is another negative attempt that This body is nothing. But actually, I am not void; I am spirit soul. And because I have no information of the spirit soul, therefore I simply try to think of the negative side of this bodily existence. That is called voidness.

Simply negative . . . now, I am not this body. I am not this body. I am not this body, that's all right. But that is not perfect self-realization. When I understand that I am not this body; I am spirit soul, that is partial self-realization. And when I understand that I am not only spirit soul, but I have got spiritual activities, that is still more advancement. And when you are actually situated in spiritual activities, that is the perfection of life. Just try to understand.

First thing is, I am not this body. That's all right. Then what you are, or what I am? The next stage is to understand that I am not this body; I am spirit soul. Ahaṁ brahmāsmi. The exact Sanskrit language is that to understand that I am spirit soul. All right, then is that finished? No. Still you have to go further.

Then I am a spirit soul. So the spirit soul in this material body has so much activities. Now, regarding this body, I have got so many activities. And when the body is finished, is it correct that the spirit soul stops to act? No. It does not stop to act. Because that is the active principle. Because the spirit is there within this body, therefore the body's acting.

Now, suppose I am not this body. Then does it mean that the spirit has no activity? So this is now wrong theory. Spirit has various activities, but you do not know. That is illusion. So meditation means to understand oneself, that I am not this body; I am spirit soul, and further advancement of that meditation is to know that what are the activities of the spirit soul, and when one is actually engaged in those spiritual activities, that is the perfection of meditation.

So this Kṛṣṇa consciousness is direct engagement of spiritual activities. This is the concession. This is the concession of this age. We have got very little opportunity in the present age to meditate. It is very difficult. The so-called meditation for fifteen minutes and twenty-three hours all kinds of nonsense activities will never help you. Therefore meditation is out of question at the present age. I am not speaking from my own whims; it is stated in the śāstra.

In the śāstra it is said that kṛte yad dhyāyato viṣṇum (SB 12.3.52). Meditation on Viṣṇu was possible in the golden age, or in the Satya-yuga. Satya-yuga means at that time the people used to live for one hundred thousands of years. And they were all perfect in religious life. There was no flaw. Then came the Tretā-yuga, when they were perfect three-fourths and the duration of life reduced to ten thousand years.

The next yuga, next millennium, is called Dvāpara-yuga, when the life of people, half religious, half pious, half vicious, and the duration of life reduced to one thousand years. And this age is called Kali-yuga, the age of quarrel and misunderstanding. The duration of life has reduced to one hundred years. Not even one hundred years; fifty years, sixty years, seventy years utmost, but within. And so far life is concerned, three-fourths of the life irreligious, one-fourth only religious. That is also doubtful.

So therefore in this age, the śāstric injunction . . . that means the injunction of the authorized scripture is that kṛte yad dhyāyato viṣṇum. In the golden age, when people used to live for 100,000's of years, meditation was possible. Because we understand Vālmīki Muni, he got perfection by meditation after meditating 60,000's of years.

And similarly, Kardama Muni, he got perfection by meditation after 10,000's of years' meditation. So meditation process is difficult process, and it is not possible in this age. This is the injunction of the śāstra. Simply we can waste our time by so-called meditation, but real meditation is not achievable at the present age.

Therefore the prescription is kṛte yad dhyāyato viṣṇum tretāyāṁ yajato makhaiḥ (SB 12.3.52). In the first millennium, meditation was possible. In the second millennium, sacrifice . . . big, big yajña, or sacrifice, was performed by people. And the third millennium, temple worship. And in the fourth millennium, kalau tad dhari-kīrtanāt: in this age of Kali, simply by chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa you can attain the perfection. So these are the prescription. We have to follow.

So our policy, those who are serious about Kṛṣṇa consciousness, they should not waste their time for sense gratification. And because the body is there, we are not free from the body, there are demands of the senses. So that should be controlled. That is the process in every line of action, either you meditate or you perform sacrifices, do anything. The real process is to control the senses. So try to control the senses as far as possible and utilize your time for advancing Kṛṣṇa consciousness. And the process is very simple—simply chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa.

So make your life regulated. There is no denial. It is not that you cannot eat or you cannot sleep or you cannot have sex life or you cannot defend yourself. Do all these things according to the rules and regulation. But don't waste your time for artificial increment of sense gratification. Don't do that. You require to eat to maintain your body and soul together—you eat. Yuktāhāra-vihārasya yogo bhavati (BG 6.17) siddhi-daḥ. You don't require to eat less. Suppose you can eat one pound. The Kṛṣṇa conscious prescription does not say, You simply eat one ounce. No. You eat one pound—but don't eat more.

Similarly, you have to sleep. All right, make your shelter, apartment, nicely so that you can comfortably sleep. Defense, yes, you defend your country, you defend your home nicely. Sex life, yes, you have sex life, but not in the unrestricted way. Limited with married wife or married husband and comfortably and very gentlemanly.

So these are prescriptions are there. There is no denial. But make it systematic. But the balance of your life . . . don't spoil your life simply for sense gratification or so-called advancement of material civilization. You should utilize your time how to make advancement in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That is the sum and substance of Prahlāda Mahārāja's instruction to his class fellows who were born of atheistic family, and we shall gradually discuss.

Now if you have got any question, you can ask.

(pause) (break)

Viṣṇujana: . . . if you chant from the lips or if you chant just in your mind as you walk?

Prabhupāda: Begin from the lips. Then you go to the mind.

Śyāmasundara: Do different spirit souls have different activities, spiritual activities?

Prabhupāda: No. Spirit soul is one; therefore, only one activity: to serve the Lord. That's all. The Lord is one, and the spirit soul, qualitatively one, and the activities also one. That is our mission: one God, one mantra, one scripture, one activity. One God: Kṛṣṇa. One mantra: Hare Kṛṣṇa. One scripture: Bhagavad-gītā. And one activity: to serve Kṛṣṇa. That's all. There is no two. One.


Gargamuni: Swāmījī, as the ages progress, the population in the ages, are they more conditioned?

Prabhupāda: Yes.

Gargamuni: Are we more conditioned than the people in the Satya-yuga?

Prabhupāda: Oh, yes, certainly. Just like a particular type of body . . . just like a dog and a man, there is difference of condition. A dog's living is more conditional than a man's living. Animal and human being, there is difference of condition. Similarly, there is difference of condition between human being and demigods. There are different other living entities in the higher planets, their condition of life, or standard of life, is different.

Just like your American, your standard of life, in other poor countries, their standard of life is different. So the same principle: according to the body you have got, the standard of so-called happiness and distress and everything is different.

So this age, Kali-yuga, as it will increase, the distress of the people will increase. I shall next day I shall describe how the distress of the Kali-yuga will increase. You just remind me next meeting.

(break) Yes?

Devotee: Swāmījī, seeing as how sorrow and happiness are there by nature's law, wouldn't these be an impediment to our devotional service?

Prabhupāda: No, for a devotee that is not impediment, because he's transcendental to distress and happiness. Spiritual activities are transcendental, ahaituky apratihatā (SB 1.2.6). Ahaitukī: spiritual activities is not done under any cause. We love Kṛṣṇa not with a cause. Just like here in the material world, I love a girl for sense gratification or I love a boy for sense gratification.

There is a cause. And as soon as the cause is disturbed, oh, the love is disturbed, there is impediment. But love of Kṛṣṇa is without cause. It is spontaneous. Therefore there is no impediment. Because the word love can be engaged only in relationship with Kṛṣṇa. Otherwise, there is no question of love. So when the love, love of Kṛṣṇa, is transcendental, there is no material impediment. Is it clear?

Devotee: If meditation without chanting was at one time successful, why is it now deficient?

Prabhupāda: Because the time has changed. You have to take, consider, according to the time, circumstances, atmosphere. Here, at the present moment, our mind is so disturbed that concentration of meditation is not possible. But this chanting, as soon as we chant, by force our mind is engaged in chanting and hearing, by force: "Hare Kṛṣṇa." So even my mind is disturbed, by the vibration I am attracted.

So that is, this meditation is recommended. Other meditation, if I sit down and think, I am thinking of the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa, which is red. At once a red bird comes in my vision and the bird begins to fly and it goes away. You see? So that kind of artificial meditation will not succeed. Meditation is not actually possible in this age.


Guest: Apparently I have trouble with the definition of meditation. You say that chanting is the way to attain . . .

Prabhupāda: Yes. I don't say; it is there . . .

Guest: Yeah, okay, right. Transcendental Meditation by the Maharishi is not a form of meditation under concentrating powers. And I was wondering . . .

Prabhupāda: What is that Transcendental Meditation? Can you explain?

Guest: If I could, I would do.

Prabhupāda: You cannot. You cannot explain?

Guest: I think he had an explanation.

Guest: We're talking of the teaching of the Maharishi.

Prabhupāda: So what is that teaching? You don't know. Then don't talk. (everyone laughs)

Guest: Okay, well, I'll try. May I try for a minute . . .?

Prabhupāda: Don't try artificially. If you don't know, why should you artificially try?

Guest: Well, that's why I'm here, because I don't know everything.

Prabhupāda: That's all right. Don't talk back. Which is the subject matters which you do not know, don't talk.

Guest: Okay.

Prabhupāda: Now, so far I know, that Maharishi says that you meditate for fifteen minutes daily. Is it correct?

Guest: Twice a day.

Prabhupāda: Twice a day, for thirty minutes.

Guest: Anywhere from fifteen minutes to an hour.

Prabhupāda: All right, two hour. (laughter) That's all right?

Guest: Pardon me?

Prabhupāda: For two hours daily, one hour morning, one afternoon.

Guest: All right.

Prabhupāda: So if one is engaged in meditation for two hours and if other is engaged for twenty-four hours, whose meditation is perfect?

Guest: Uh, I don't know.

Prabhupāda: You don't know?

Guest: The Maharishi hasn't . . .

Prabhupāda: No, don't take the Maharishi. I mean to say, if somebody is engaged in meditation for two hours and other is engaged for twenty-four hours, then whose meditation value will be greater?

Guest: Then there are two types of meditation, there's a two-hour meditation . . .

Prabhupāda: First of all you answer this.

Guest: Pardon me? I missed it.

Prabhupāda: I am just telling that a person is engaged in meditation for two hours, and another person is engaged in meditation for twenty-four hours. Whose meditation is valuable?

Guest: The twenty-four hours.

Prabhupāda: Is it not?

Guest: Are you asking me to go out and chant all day long?

Prabhupāda: Huh?

Guest: Are we supposed to chant twenty-four hours?

Prabhupāda: Not only chanting. There are other engagements.

Guest: Right. That's what the Maharishi says also.

Prabhupāda: So, twenty-four hours . . . now, that meditation, what is that, what Maharishi says you do not know you say just now, that you do not know.

Guest: I don't know as well as the Maharishi knows, but I'd like to. Perhaps you can explain.

Prabhupāda: But then explain. What is that?

Guest: He says that to meditate twice a day.

Prabhupāda: That's all right. What is that meditation process?

Guest: Okay, you're given your mantra, and when you sit there and meditate, you think . . .

Prabhupāda: Do you know that mantra?

Guest: Yes, but I can't speak it.

Prabhupāda: You cannot speak. It is secret?

Guest: It's not secret. If I speak it, I'll ruin the power. (laughter)

Prabhupāda: Therefore, our mahā-mantra is so nice that as we chant this loudly, the power becomes loud. (laughter continues)

Guest: Okay, this is where the problem lies, then. Because I think that that's fine. And I agree. And yet, I don't think there's just one mantra.

Prabhupāda: And there is no secret; it is open. It is open.

Guest: I don't think there's just one mantra, sir. I feel that the entire mantra would be oṁ. And so Hare Kṛṣṇa Rāma would be just one part of oṁ. Now, isn't that true?

Prabhupāda: Is there any difference between oṁ and Hare Kṛṣṇa?

Guest: Yeah, oṁ is the total, isn't it?

Prabhupāda: Huh?

Guest: Well, okay. I'll reword that. Isn't oṁ the total expression sound of nature?

Prabhupāda: Yes. Do you know the definition of oṁ?

Guest: Aren't Kṛṣṇa and Rama the same?

Prabhupāda: Do you know the definition of oṁ?

Guest: The Bhagavad-gītā defines it.

Prabhupāda: It is in the Bhagavad-gītā said, akṣarāṇām oṁkāro 'smi. Kṛṣṇa says that "Amongst the alphabets, I am oṁkāra." Therefore oṁkāra is not different from Kṛṣṇa. As soon as we say "Kṛṣṇa," the oṁkāra is there.

Guest: Right. And I imagine that as soon as I say my mantra, oṁ is also there, is it not?

Prabhupāda: So oṁkāra . . . in every Vedic mantra the oṁkāra is there. But when Kṛṣṇa is there, oṁkāra is automatically there. Because it is said in the Bhagavad-gītā, akṣarāṇām oṁkāro 'smi: "Amongst the alphabets, I am oṁkāra." So when you speak of Kṛṣṇa, the oṁkāra is automatically there. When there is fire, the heat is automatically there.

Guest: Okay, one more thing. Transcendental Meditation by the Maharishi is not a concentrating process. It's a process of using the mantra to get into the meditation. And once reaching the point of deep meditation, thoughts will just occur. And there's no concentrating procedure at all. And this is why I had a question in the first place, in that you said meditation's impossible because it's a concentrating process. Well, Maharishi's meditation is not the concentrating . . .

Prabhupāda: Then he has manufactured something. It is not stated in the standard book. You see Bhagavad-gītā and Patañjali system, yoga system, that is differently stated.

Guest: I see.

Prabhupāda: In the Bhagavad-gītā, the meditation has to be concentrated upon the Viṣṇu. Mat-para. The word is mat-para. One has to concentrate his meditation upon the form of Viṣṇu. Nothing else. That is real meditation. But if Maharishi has manufactured his own way of meditation, I cannot comment upon it. Because we have to comment on the books of authority.

Any other question? All right. (end)