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711205 - Conversation at the International Academy of Indian Culture - Delhi

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His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada



711205R1-DELHI - December 05, 1971 - 18:18 Minutes



(Prabhupāda visits the International Academy of Indian Culture, and is being shown around by the president of that society, Dr. Lokesh Candra, a renowned scholar of Buddhism. Prabhupāda is walking and being shown books and artifacts by Dr. Candra.)

Devotee: Hare Kṛṣṇa. (break)

Prabhupāda: . . . publications?

Dr. Candra: Ah, this one. It's a Tibetan Sanskrit dictionary, for the reconstruction of Sanskrit language, which has been lost in, for example, in your country, but it was found in Tibet.

Prabhupāda: It is published in Japan?

Dr. Candra: Yes, this is a photographic edition of the original. This has been published this year. It was out of print for the last eight or nine years. (break)

Prabhupāda: . . . leather?

Dr. Candra: No, it's a synthetic . . .

Prabhupāda: Plastic.

Dr. Candra: Plastic. Leather is very expensive. This is Āditya . . .

Prabhupāda: Ah.

Dr. Candra: . . . the sun-god from Japan. And that is the letter "r," which was taken from Naranga in ancient times. This script was taken from Naranga to Japan by Subal Narasingha. We have all the gods and goddesses, the rāśis, the nakshaktras . . .

Prabhupāda: Oh.

Dr. Candra: . . . in Japan. (break) . . . the gods and goddesses found in Japan. Mandara is a yantra. Hmm? This is not yet finished. It is . . . it will be finished soon. And here are the different Indian gods and goddesses. This is Skanda, Sarasvatī, hmm? Candra and Candrā. This is Nārāyaṇa.

Prabhupāda: These are found where?

Dr. Candra: These are found in monasteries.

Prabhupāda: Oh.

Dr. Candra: This is Gaṇeśa. Gaṇapati.

Prabhupāda: Monasteries where? In Japan?

Dr. Candra: Yes. There are twelve thousand monasteries of Mantrayana.

Prabhupāda: I see.

Dr. Candra: So in these monasteries of Mantrayana you'll find Sanskrit texts and Indian gods and goddesses.

Prabhupāda: (to devotee) That means, I told you several times, this Āryan culture was all over the world.

Dr. Candra: And this is Mahākāla.

Prabhupāda: Mahākāla, yes.

Dr. Candra: Siṁha, Śukra, Kṛttikā, Kanyā, Bhāraṇī, Aśvinī, Uttara-bhādrapadā. Revatī, Pūrva-bhādrapadā, Śatabhiṣā and Dhaniṣṭa.

Prabhupāda: They're in Japanese language?

Dr. Candra: Yes, they are all Japanese. Śatabhiṣā is Kisupu. And Dhaniṣṭa is Kirti. They have their own names. Every Sanskrit name was translated into Japanese. Here's Pṛthvī, in the form of a kumbha.

Prabhupāda: Where it is printed?

Dr. Candra: Printed here. It will be published by the end of this month. That is my estimate. We do our printing ourself. Vasiṣṭha Ṛṣi. Vasusena. And Vasvi, his wife, Vasusena both.

Prabhupāda: That means all the Purāṇas . . .

Dr. Candra: Hmm?

Prabhupāda: . . . are there in Japan?

Dr. Candra: Nay . . . the Puranic tradition is there in a minute form.

Prabhupāda: (indistinct) . . . I saw, one Buddhist temple, viṣṇu-mūrti.

Dr. Candra: Yes, Viṣṇu is found. Because Viṣṇu is . . . (phone rings) Hello? (break) Avalokiteśvara, thousand arms, a thousand hands, and a thousand eyes.

Prabhupāda: Viśvarūpa.

Dr. Candra: Avalokiteśvara, the Japanese one. The concept of the virāṭa-puruṣa.

Prabhupāda: Virāṭa-puruṣa in Bhagavad-gītā. (break)

Dr. Candra: Shall I . . .

Prabhupāda: The old system.

Dr. Candra: Shall I take you upstairs?

Prabhupāda: Yes.

Dr. Candra: There is an exhibition of the Rāmāyaṇa in Indonesia.

Devotee: Rāmāyaṇa is . . . (indistinct)

Dr. Candra: Yeah. (break) That's the Bhāgavata Purāṇa, and also a word index so that every word can be traced in the Bhāgavata Purāṇa. (break) And here is a . . . (indistinct) . . . There was an international conference on the Rāmāyaṇa in Indonesia in September. So on that occasion everyone issued something as a souvenir, and this was the postcard issued by the Indonesian Airways, Garuda Indonesian Airways.

Here is Sītā and Rāvaṇa. He's carrying her away, and on the way Jaṭāyu comes to rescue her, and he is fatally wounded. So this is the depiction of that. And in the background, if you can follow, is Prambanan of the ninth century. This temple is 150 feet high, and around it there are 259 temples, about 40 feet high . . . 45 feet high.

Prabhupāda: This is Hindu culture.

Dr. Candra: It is a temple. That is Rāma, depicted by a Japanese artist, Buddhist artist. Rāma is shooting the golden deer. And the background again is this temple of Prambanan.

Prabhupāda: Hah.

Dr. Candra: Prambanan has inspired a lot of poetry in Indonesia. And here is the ceiling panel on the Yogyakarta Airport. They have made a new panel about four or five years ago about . . .

(break) . . . from the eighth century, they are called the Dieng Temples. It's a small plateau on the hills where you find these temples. And they have a very beautiful Gaṇeśa, which is now in the Netherlands, in Holland. The original one.

(break) And this here . . . (break)

Prabhupāda: Varuṇa dīpikā prakta rājendra mūla varṇa.

Dr. Candra: Just a moment . . . (break)

Prabhupāda: . . . by the devotion this was found. (break)

Dr. Candra: Here. (break) Kṛṣṇa and Arjuna. The Kṛṣṇa and Arjuna saṁvāda. In Indonesia they project these wayang puppets onto a screen, and the light . . . or the light gives all these colors also on the screen.

Devotee: Very nice art.

Dr. Candra: Hmm. These are very ordinary ones; there are very beautiful puppets. (break) And these are the pictures . . . (break) . . . of the Rāmāyaṇa from Burma.

Prabhupāda: Burma also there is Rāmāyaṇa culture?

Dr. Candra: Yes. There is Kuntī and the five Pāṇḍavas. Here they have shown the light effect. When light is projected through these leather puppets, then they look something like this.

Devotee: There's fifteen countries that took part?

Dr. Candra: No, seven or eight. Here is Viṣṇu on Garuḍa, modern work, Balinese work. Hmm? And this is Rāma. (break) Look at this yantra, it is yatra upannam viśvaṁ yatra didhatam bibinam adi yatra tasmai namo bhagavate śivāya śiva kālīnaṁ. And so on.

Indonesia had Sanskrit inscriptions up to the ninth century. And after that they got their own language. Here is the ayanor nidya nidyarksa of Sītā, so beautifully done. (indistinct Sanskrit) This is in Japanese style. Arjuna, and here is Gatotkaca, and this is Gatotkaca doing . . . (indistinct) . . . (break)

Prabhupāda: . . . son of Bhima?

Dr. Candra: Yes, Hiḍimbī-putra, that is how they know him. This is Gaṇeśa, replica of a fourteenth-century image. This is the head of Rāma from Prambanan, ninth century. It's also a replica.

Prabhupāda: This is maintained by government?

Dr. Candra: By me, by your blessings.

Prabhupāda: Government is not helping?

Dr. Candra: No. The government wants to help, but I do not want their help—no interference.

Prabhupāda: Oh.

Dr. Candra: The Prime Minister would very much like to help me, (laughs) for political reasons. My father was president of the Jana Sangh.

Prabhupāda: I see.

Dr. Candra: So I came over to her side in December last, and she was very insistent, so I had to come. So she wants to help me, but I have told her I want a political position and not money. This is Śikhaṇḍī, and that is Kṛṣṇa with a bow and arrow. They have been to Mrs. Gandhi with me, (laughs) once (laughs). And they could stay in India only on the intervention of Madam Gandhi, not otherwise. Because the Maharashtra government had recommended that they should be turned out.

Devotee: Bombay.

Dr. Candra: So the Home Secretary, once he met me at a dinner and related the whole story. So he went to the Prime Minister and asked her what to do. She said: "All right, tell them that they should observe time and allow them to stay." So they have met her twice before.

This is the temple of Prambanan, three hundred and fifty feet high. It's one of the most gorgeous temple complexes. Ninth century. And this is Viṣṇu. There are three temples. You see central temple is dedicated to Viṣṇu, the two side temples are dedicated to Brahmā and Viṣṇu . . .

No, the center is Śiva, side temples are Brahmā and Viṣṇu. So this is the image in the Viṣṇu temple. Here you see the Garuḍa, because the emblem of the Indonesian state. Hmm? And this is Gaṇeśa, smiling Gaṇeśa.

Prabhupāda: Hah. (break)

Dr. Candra: Bali. And here are . . . (break) . . . are correlated to the mountains and rivers of India, Mount Kailāsa and so on. And this is the pañca-mahābhūta.

Prabhupāda: . . . (indistinct)

Dr. Candra: Pṛthvī-apa-tejas-vāyu and ākāśa. And these are some of the mudrās used in their worship.

(break) . . . important village, city, they . . . and a small . . . (indistinct) . . . town they have the constitution written. And the constitution, the Indonesian constitution is just five principles, which they call pañca-śilā, and the first principle is to have belief in Mahā-īśa. That is the word they have used here. And besides these five principles of the Indonesian constitution, there is the image of Śrīdevī, the goddess of plenty, the goddess of rice fields.

Prabhupāda: Lakṣmī.

Dr. Candra: Lakṣmī also they use.

Prabhupāda: Śrī means . . .

Dr. Candra: Yes, but their Śrīdevī is more an agricultural goddess. Hmm? And this is a replica of an apsarā in the Prambanan temple.

Prabhupāda: Apsarā?

Dr. Candra: Apsarā. (break)

Prabhupāda: They are old photos.

Dr. Candra: These are old photos . . . (indistinct) . . . This Rāmāyaṇa which was written in the ninth century by Yogeśvara. And this is the Mahābhārata, an adaptation of the Mahābhārata in eleventh century.

Prabhupāda: Sanskrit language?

Dr. Candra: No, in their own language.

Devotee: This is original?

Dr. Candra: Original.

Devotee: Kept very well.

Dr. Candra: Oh, yes.

Devotee: What is this material?

Dr. Candra: Palm leaf.

Prabhupāda: Palm leaf with an iron pen. (break) . . . ordinary book?

Dr. Candra: Ordinary book. But done from a single piece. This is the agni-parīkṣā of Sītā. (break) Agni, who is the lord of fire, came out and reprimanded Rāma and Lakṣmaṇa that, "Sītā is so pure that fire cannot test her purity. And the purity of fire can be tested by Sītā alone." This is Rāma staying in the vana. This is Kṛṣṇa-Arjuna saṁvāda according to the Balinese way of painting.

Prabhupāda: So they are Vaiṣṇava?

Dr. Candra: Ah, they are Vaiṣṇava, they are Śaivite, they are all sorts of things combined. Synthetic. This is again from the temple at Prambanan. Ah, Sītā in the Aśoka-vana. And you see in this great temple of Prambanan, opposite the main temples you have the vahanas, and the Śiva temple is faced by Nandī. (break)

Prabhupāda: . . . I have to go now.

Dr. Candra: Really?

Prabhupāda: Yes. Because somebody is expected by half-past four.

Dr. Candra: Oh. (Hindi: I want to show a little bit more.) And no books?

Prabhupāda: (indistinct Hindi) (break)

Dr. Candra: . . . and we have a small printing press with which we have written our . . . (break) International Academy of Indian Culture.

Prabhupāda: (Hindi: He brought tea.) (laughter)

Dr. Candra: Dalmiyaji is helping us. This is the . . . (indistinct)

Prabhupāda: I see.

Dr. Candra: I got this . . . (indistinct)

Prabhupāda: Ācchā.

Dr. Candra: Prepare such things . . . (break) If you are interested, you can take with you.

Prabhupāda: No.

Dr. Candra: Hah?

Prabhupāda: No. I am simply asking. I am simply asking.

Dr. Candra: It is a hundred and fifty rupees. It is published by Vivekananda Memorial Committee.

Prabhupāda: I see . . . (indistinct) . . . So let us go . . .

(break) The perfection of Indian culture is Kṛṣṇa.

Dr. Candra: Hmm. Yes.

Prabhupāda: So try to help us as far as possible.

Dr. Candra: I will try to, I know. But I am a small man. Hmm? I have not gone to so many places, but I am try to do something . . . When you are in London we must try to do something . . . (indistinct) . . . Even the . . . (indistinct) . . . we can talk to some of the ex . . . (indistinct) . . . or speak to the queen. That's not very difficult, and then if some . . . something should be done also . . . (Hindi: Can you please sit behind.) (break) (end)