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700220 - Lecture Initiation Sannyasa - Los Angeles

His Divine Grace
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

The text previously on this page can now be found at: 700720 - Lecture Initiation Sannyasa - Los Angeles

700220IN.LA - February 20, 1970 - 27:12 Minutes


nama apavitraḥ pavitro vā
sarvāvasthāṁ gato 'pi vā
yaḥ smaret puṇḍarīkākṣaṁ
sa bāhya abhyantaram śuci
śrī viṣṇu, śrī viṣṇu, śrī viṣṇu
(Garuḍa Purāṇa)

The purport of this mantra is that any condition of life. There are two conditions: pavitra and apavitraḥ. Pavitra means purified, and apavitraḥ means contaminated. We are all spirit soul. By nature we are purified, but at the present moment, in this material condition of life with this material body, we are contaminated.

So this whole process of Kṛṣṇa consciousness is to liberate ourself from the contaminated state to the pure stage. Just like a man, when he is diseased, he is treated under prescribed medical method to come to the healthy stage. To come to the healthy stage does not mean that your features will be changed. Just like a diseased man, when he is cured of the disease, he has got the same two hands and legs and mouth and everything. It is simply he is freed from the symptoms of the disease.

Similarly, to become liberated does not mean that we shall become impersonal. That is a false theory. Every living entity is a person. God is person, everyone: nityo nityānāṁ cetanaś cetanānām (Kaṭha Upaniṣad 2.2.13). God is the Supreme Person amongst millions . . . why millions? Unlimited persons, asaṅkhya. Asaṅkhya means there is no number how many living entities we are. They are simply left in plural number, nityānāṁ. Nityo nityānāṁ: Kṛṣṇa, or God, is singular number, nitya, and we living entities, we are plural number. How many we are, there is no counting. Jīva-asāṅkhyā: the living entities are innumerable, but God is one.

So the Vedic information gives us that God is one supreme person, eternal amongst many eternals—but they are not supreme. This plural number are not supreme. Supreme means one. If supreme has any competition, then how He can be supreme? Therefore there is nobody equal to God or greater than Him. Asamordhva. Asama means "nobody can be on the equal level of God.” Whoever he may be, however powerful that he may be, nobody can be equal with God.

Just like Kṛṣṇa, when He was playing His pastime as a child of Yaśodā. Mother Yaśodā was trying to bind Him, and she collected rope in her home as much as possible, and as soon as she was going to knot, give knot, there was some shortage, two inches. In this way Mother Yaśodā become exasperated, she was perspiring that, "How to solve this problem? How to knot it?" So that is the position. Kṛṣṇa, although He was playing the child of Mother Yaśodā, the indication was, "Mother, I have become your child because you wanted Me like that. But that does not mean you can bind Me if I do not agree." That is Kṛṣṇa. "Now I think you have perspiring there, too much time. You can bind now."

So that is Kṛṣṇa's position. Nobody can be equal. Because Kṛṣṇa agrees to play with you, to become your friend, to become your master or sometimes to give you some service also—Kṛṣṇa is so kind—but never think that Kṛṣṇa is . . . you are equal to Kṛṣṇa. No. Any circumstance, He is asamordhva (Ādi 4.242–243); therefore He is singular number, He is always singular number. There cannot be Gods, only God—one singular number.

So nityo nityānāṁ cetanaś cetanānām. So qualitatively we are the same, cetana. Cetana means conscious. God is conscious; we are conscious. But His consciousness and your consciousness is not of the same quantity. His consciousness is . . . He can remember millions of years past, present and future. Just like in the Bhagavad-gītā, when Arjuna was informed by Kṛṣṇa that, "This Bhagavad-gītā philosophy, yoga system, was spoken by Me to the sun-god, first." That means millions and millions of years ago, when He was speaking to Kṛṣṇa, er, Arjuna. So Arjuna enquired, "My dear Kṛṣṇa, we are contemporary. How it is that You spoke to the sun-god?"

That is to clear the thing. Arjuna understood what Kṛṣṇa said, but rascals like us will think, "How is it that, that Kṛṣṇa said millions of years ago?" So to clear the point Arjuna enquired, "How it is possible?" The reply was, "My dear Arjuna, both yourself and I appeared many times before, but you have forgotten; I do not." This is consciousness. The quantity of consciousness is the difference between God and the living entity.

Our consciousness is limited, and Kṛṣṇa's consciousness is unlimited, unfathomed. So we may have forgotten everything in our past life, but Kṛṣṇa does not forget. Kṛṣṇa keeps account every beat of your action. He is sitting in your heart:

īśvaraḥ sarva-bhūtānāṁ
hṛd-deśe 'rjuna tiṣṭhati
(BG 18.61)

He is keeping account. You wanted to do something. "All right," Kṛṣṇa says: "Do it." You wanted to become a tiger? "All right," Kṛṣṇa says: "you become a tiger, and you hunt animal and suck fresh blood, satisfy your senses." So Kṛṣṇa gives you chance. Similarly if you want to be Kṛṣṇa-ite, Kṛṣṇa conscious, and enjoy with Him, He will give you the facility. All facilities He will give you. If you want to become something, He will give you full facility. If you want to forget Him, He will give you so much intelligence that you will forget Him forever. And if you want to associate with Him, He will give you chance, personally association, just like the gopīs, the cowherd boys, playing with Kṛṣṇa.

This description of Kṛṣṇa's playing with the cowherd boy is given by Śukadeva Gosvāmī. He says:

itthaṁ brahma-sukhānubhūtyā
dāsyaṁ gatānāṁ para-daivatena
māyāśritānāṁ nara-dārakeṇa
sākaṁ vijahruḥ kṛta-puṇya-puñjāḥ
(SB 10.12.11)

These cowherd boys are playing. Playing with whom? He says, itthaṁ brahma-sukhānubhūtyā: the Supreme Absolute Truth whom the impersonalists, the philosophers, think of, here is that person. And dāsyaṁ gatānāṁ para-daivatena: those who are devotees, the Supreme Person, He is here. And māyāśritānāṁ nara-dārakeṇa: those who are ordinarily, they are thinking Kṛṣṇa as ordinary child, but anyway He is the same, either you are thinking ordinary human being or the Supreme Absolute Truth or the Supreme Personality of Godhead. These boys are playing with Him because they accumulated kṛta-puṇya-puñjāḥ. Volumes of pious activities, many, many lives, now they have got this opportunity. So everyone can have this opportunity. So if you want to have that opportunity, then you must be purified.

So this initiation process means purification. It will make you perfectly purified, so that you can also associate with Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Everyone has got the chance. Kṛṣṇa is not partial, He is available to somebody, not available to somebody. No. Kṛṣṇa says in the Bhagavad-gītā:

māṁ hi pārtha vyapāśritya
ye 'pi syuḥ pāpa-yonayaḥ
(BG 9.32)

Here in this material world, those who are born in low families, they are considered abominable, or something like that. But Kṛṣṇa says: "Anyone, never mind in whatever family or whatever species of life he is born, if he is under regulative principles purified, and takes shelter unto Me, under proper direction, everyone comes unto Me."

kiṁ punar brāhmaṇāḥ puṇyā
bhaktā rājarṣayas tathā
(BG 9.33)

And what to speak of highly elevated, purified brahmins and kṣatriyas? Anyone can come. So there is no ban to approach Kṛṣṇa. There is no ban, there is no hindrance, provided one is prepared to purify. That's all.

So this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement therefore first recommend that you dismantle the four pillars of sinful life. Break the pillars. What are these? Illicit sex life, meat-eating, gambling and taking to intoxicants. These four pillars. The whole world is standing on these four pillars of sinful activity, and at the same time they want peace. You see? This is not possible. There cannot be any peace without Kṛṣṇa consciousness, rest assured, however you may try for it. It is not possible.

So this initiation process means purification process. And how it is possible? Yaḥ smaret puṇḍarīkākṣam (Garuḍa Purāṇa): Anyone who always remembers, meditates. This meditation means remembering Viṣṇu. That is real meditation. Mat-paraḥ—Viṣṇu. So smaret, as soon as you chant Hare Kṛṣṇa, you remember, you immediately remember Kṛṣṇa. And how to remember Kṛṣṇa? Therefore there is Deity. You always see the Deity, and immediately you remember Kṛṣṇa, this form of Kṛṣṇa, the name of Kṛṣṇa, the quality of Kṛṣṇa, the entourage of Kṛṣṇa, the pastimes of Kṛṣṇa. In this way our reading of Bhagavad-gītā . . . Bhagavad-gītā, Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, pastimes of Kṛṣṇa. His dealing with His devotees, His dealing with the demons, that is also pastime.

So when we hear, chant, remember, see always Kṛṣṇa, yaḥ smaret, ultimately you come to the point of remembering Kṛṣṇa. And as soon as you remember Kṛṣṇa you are purified. Immediately you are purified. But we are put into certain condition now, that we are being purified, and at the same time again committing something sinful. Because we have been practiced to this habit since a very, very long time—not only in this life, but also in the past life. Therefore the process should be constantly chanting:

Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare
Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare

In this way, when your portion of sinful life will be completely made zero, you will immediately become eligible to be transferred to the Kṛṣṇaloka. That's all. Immediately. That is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā, yeṣām anta-gataṁ . . . (BG 7.28) Not only there; here also.

This bhakti-yoga process cannot be accepted by any ordinary man, a sinful man. Those who are engaged in this temple worship of Kṛṣṇa, offering food, offering ārati, offering . . . decorating, changing dress, preparing food—so many engagements—going outside collecting some money for the expenditure of the temple, maintaining the establishment . . . eh? We have got to spend more than $2,000 dollars for this particular establishment, and we have got twenty-six. So we have to work, but not work like the karmīs. We have to work for Kṛṣṇa. That is our business.

So in this way those who are engaged in Kṛṣṇa business, in Kṛṣṇa consciousness business, they are already free from the sinful reaction of life. They are not ordinary person, otherwise how they are restraining themselves from these four principles of sinful life? They are not ordinary persons. Therefore Kṛṣṇa says in the Bhagavad-gītā that one can be engaged in the Kṛṣṇa consciousness activities when he is completely freed from all sinful activities. Yeṣām anta-gataṁ pāpam. Pāpam means sinful life, or sinful activities, or reaction.

One who has finished this contaminated life, yeṣāṁ anta-gataṁ pāpaṁ janānāṁ puṇya-karmaṇām . . . (BG 7.28) How it is possible? By executing pious activities. And what is that pious activities? Just chant Hare Kṛṣṇa and spread it, that's all. You haven't got to make charities, as it was custom before. Where is the money to give in charity? You are beggars. But we can give in charity the most sublime thing: Hare Kṛṣṇa.

So all these boys and girls who are engaged in distributing this Hare Kṛṣṇa movement, they are always engaged in pious activities. Puṇya-śravaṇa-kīrtanam (SB 1.2.17). Puṇya—pious; śravaṇa-kīrtanamkīrtana chanting and hearing: if you understand or don't understand, but you are associating with pious activities, so pious man.

yeṣāṁ anta-gataṁ pāpaṁ
janānāṁ puṇya-karmaṇām
te dvandva-moha-nirmuktā
(BG 7.28)

They are freed from dualities. What is that duality? That anyone who is thinking that there is something beyond Kṛṣṇa, he is in duality. Actually there is nothing beyond Kṛṣṇa. There is nothing beyond Kṛṣṇa. Īśāvāsyam idaṁ sarvam (ISO 1)—everything Kṛṣṇa's, or Kṛṣṇa. That realization is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. This planet, there are many florist shops, people are purchasing millions of dollars' daily, but he is purchasing for his sense gratification. That is non-Kṛṣṇa. The same flower, we purchase and bring it for decorating Kṛṣṇa's throne, it is Kṛṣṇa conscious. There is the difference. When you use things for your sense gratification, that is material. And as soon as you use it for Kṛṣṇa, it is spiritual.

Actually there is nothing aspected material, because everything emanation from Kṛṣṇa. The quality is there. Just like sunshine: the sunshine, the quality of warmth is there, as the warmth is there in the sun globe. Similarly, the sunshine is also warm. But when it is clouded or covered by the snow, we feel something else. But that is not actually the sunshine; it is sun covered. Similarly, the spiritual quality of everything is covered by sense gratification. That is materialism. And you uncover it, engage it for Kṛṣṇa, it is spiritual. That is the original quality, Kṛṣṇa.

So everything in this way. People may say: "Oh you are eating rice, ḍāl, cāpāṭi, and you say it is spiritual prasādam, and in our case it is not. Why?" Why? It is offered to Kṛṣṇa. So you have to offer everything, prāṇair arthair dhiyā vācā (SB 10.22.35). You offer your life, you offer your wealth, you offer your intelligence, you offer your words. Then there is nothing—you become Kṛṣṇa conscious, and your life becomes purified, and you become eligible to enter into Kṛṣṇa's planet.

The people are spending millions of dollars to enter into the moon planet. And what is their moon planet? So far they have informed, there is nothing; they have collected some dust. If they can spend so much money for collecting some dried grass from the moon planet, eh, why not apply everything for entering the beautiful, transcendental planet of Kṛṣṇa? Is it very bad business? No. Less intelligent persons, they are engaged otherwise. These boys are very intelligent.

Kṛṣṇa ye bhaje se baḍa catura (CC Antya 4.67). Anyone who engages himself in Kṛṣṇa consciousness business is very, very intelligent, is the most intelligent person. So we are making the foolish persons intelligent. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. The best education we are giving, the best life we are giving. Let anyone come, they will find here it is sublime, the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is sublime.

Now I have got . . . received one news from Detroit. They were arrested, and there was charge against them. The police gave them ticket and there was a case, and the judge saw them and learned the whole thing, and immediately ordered to "Go, please, peacefully." They were discharged.

Remember and follow the regulative principles. The . . . avoid the ten kinds of offenses and chant Hare Kṛṣṇa beads at least sixteen times daily, and spread Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Be happy, make others happy, and Kṛṣṇa will be happy. Then our business is finished.

Thank you very much.

Devotees: Jaya! (end)