720629 - Lecture at San Diego University - San Diego
Spokesman: (introduction) We wish to welcome all of you to the University of San Diego tonight, and to this auspicious occasion of having Bhaktivedanta Swami as a guest of the Ecumenical Center for World Religions. The Ecumenical Center for World Religion on the campus of this university was founded for the purpose of meeting people of other religions, and Bhaktivedanta Swami comes to us from India tonight, representing what is known as the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement.
He stands in a long line of disciplic succession going back to, according to the Hare Kṛṣṇa movement, going back to the very beginning of time when Kṛṣṇa, who is the Supreme Godhead, or God, made Himself known to man through disciples and through revelation, and particularly through a man of five hundred years ago, Lord Caitanya.
Spokesman: And I have a reading here from Him which I think is rather interesting. It is in the form of a catechism, it's a question and answer, and Lord Caitanya was asked this:
"Which knowledge is the highest of all?" And the answer is, "There is no knowledge at all but devotion to Kṛṣṇa."
"What is the highest glory in all types of glories?" The answer, "Being reputed to be Kṛṣṇa's devotee."
Question: "What is counted wealth amongst human possessions?" Answer, "He is immensely wealthy who has love for Kṛṣṇa."
Question: "What is the heaviest of all sorrows?" "There is no sorrow except separation from Kṛṣṇa."
"Who is considered liberated among those who are liberated?" Answer: "He is the foremost of the liberated who practices devotion to Kṛṣṇa."
So Swami Bhaktivedanta comes here as a representative of this Hare Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. And Bhaktivedanta Swami, on behalf of the University and the Center for World Religions here, I wish to present to you this book on San Diego . . .
Prabhupāda: So . . .
Spokesman: . . . the portrait of a spectacular city . . .
Spokesman: . . . with its promises and its . . . we hope for future growth. We hope you enjoy our city and the hospitality of this campus.
Prabhupāda: Thank you.
(aside) We have got our Kṛṣṇa Book?
Devotee: Just a few minutes.
Prabhupāda: (to spokesman) So that is my presentation to you.
Devotees: Jaya. (laughter) We had one ready.
Spokesman: And now you will speak, Śrīla?
(aside) This cord is . . . tick-tick-burn.
(laughter) . . . (indistinct) . . . disturbance?
Ladies and gentlemen, I thank you for your kindly receiving us. This Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement . . . Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is not a new thing. Five thousand years ago, when Lord Kṛṣṇa appeared on this planet, since then Kṛṣṇa consciousness is present, according to historical times.
But we get information from Bhagavad-gītā that Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is current since forty millions of years.
In the Fourth Chapter of Bhagavad-gītā it is said:
- imaṁ vivasvate yogaṁ
- proktavān aham avyayam
- vivasvān manave prāha
- manur ikṣvākave 'bravīt
- (BG 4.1)
Kṛṣṇa says that this Bhagavad-gītā, bhakti-yoga system, was explained by Him first of all to the sun god. Now, sun god instructed to his son, Manu, the father of mankind, and Manu instructed to his son, Ikṣvāku, the head of the Ikṣvāku dynasty in which Lord Rāmacandra appeared.
So calculating the age of Manu and others, it is approximately about 40,000,000's of years ago this Bhagavad-gītā or the philosophy of Bhagavad-gītā was spoken by Kṛṣṇa to the sun god, or the predominating deity of the sun planet. According to our Vedic understanding we have got history not only of this planet, but all the planets in the universe. Sun globe . . . we can say who is the predominating president now in the sun globe. His name is Vivasvān; the name is also there.
So this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, taking from the authority of Vedic literature, it is very, very old movement, Kṛṣṇa consciousness. But this consciousness is educated or imparted through disciplic succession, just like Kṛṣṇa first of all spoke about this Kṛṣṇa consciousness philosophy to the sun god Vivasvān, and Vivasvān instructed the same thing to Manu.
Manu again instructed the same thing to Mahārāja Ikṣvāku. In this way it was coming down by disciplic succession. But five thousand years ago Kṛṣṇa informed Arjuna that, "This disciplic system, or succession, has been broken; therefore I am repeating the same philosophy again, unto you."
Now Arjuna was a warrior, commander-in-chief. He was kṣatriya; he was not a brāhmin or a very big scholar in Vedānta, Vedic literature. He was ordinary householder . . . not ordinary, but a householder, a member of the royal family, a fighter. But Kṛṣṇa selected him to be the fit person to understand Bhagavad-gītā.
So what was the qualification of Arjuna that Kṛṣṇa selected him to be the renovated disciple? First of all He made His disciple the sun god, but that disciplic succession being broken, or disturbed, He selected again five thousand years ago to speak Bhagavad-gītā, the philosophy of Bhagavad-gītā.
The only qualification, as stated by Kṛṣṇa, He says, bhakto 'si, priyo'si me, rahasyaṁ hy etad uttamam (BG 4.3): "The mystery of this bhakti yoga, or Kṛṣṇa consciousness, can be understood by you because you are My devotee and My confidential friend." This is the qualification. Because Kṛṣṇa . . . Kṛṣṇa selected Arjuna not that because he was a sannyāsī or a brāhmin or a great scholar in Vedic literature. Not all this qualification. He says that "Because you are My devotee. Because you are My intimate friend."
The point is that as you are present here many scholars, philosophers . . . Bhagavad-gītā is read very widely all over the world. Not only in India but—I am traveling all over the world—there are many editions of Bhagavad-gītā in many languages, especially in the English language.
In America there are so many, and in India also. But the point is, just take of all these Bhagavad-gītā editions mostly, may be one or two exceptions, the author or the commentator has used his own intelligence, without taking the intelligence of Arjuna or Kṛṣṇa.
So although Bhagavad-gītā was being read very widely, not a single person . . . devotee of Kṛṣṇa came out, although in Europe and America Bhagavad-gītā was current at least for the last two hundred years. Many svāmīs, many yogīs also came from India; they also gave good reference from Bhagavad-gītā. But not a single person came out as a devotee of Kṛṣṇa.
Now we have begun this movement since 1966, and we are presenting our Bhagavad-gītā; we have got our Bhagavad-gītā edition, we present Bhagavad-gītā as it is, without any interpretation. So people are accepting it, and we have got thousands of devotees of Kṛṣṇa in your Western countries. I'm not speaking of India. India there are millions, but here the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement has begun in 1966.
Actually it has begun in 1968, because I came here in your country in 1965. So for one year I had no local . . . (indistinct) . . . here, I was traveling here and there. In 1966 this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement was registered in New York. Then I . . . in 1966, July.
Then I fell sick and I went back to India in 1967. So it was not organized. Then I again came back in 1968. From that time we are preaching little vigorously the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, and the younger generation, boys and girls, especially within the thirty years, they are taking it very seriously. And some of these boys have already gone to India.
They were received very well all over the country, because in India they could not believe that in Western countries such nice Kṛṣṇa devotees can be produced. They are excelling many Indian devotees, many Indian devotees, because they are taking it seriously. Therefore they are excelling many so-called sādhus and devotees in India. That's a fact.
Why? People said, gave me credit, that I have done wonderful. But I say that I do not know any magic that I have done some wonderful. But if there is any credit on my part, that credit is that I have not adulterated Bhagavad-gītā. That's all. I am speaking Bhagavad-gītā as it is—not concocted ideas that Kurukṣetra means this and Pandava means this and that means this, that means . . . no.
We don't say like that. We say Kurukṣetra means Kurukṣetra. There is a place still, those who have gone to India, it is about eighty miles, ninety miles from New Delhi. There is a station Kurukṣetra. When I passed through that railway station I showed my disciples that "Here is Kurukṣetra still."
But there are so-called commentators, they interpret, "Kurukṣetra means this body." From which dictionary they got this meaning I do not know, and where is the chance of interpreting Kurukṣetra, which is still standing, to make the commentary as body, the Pandavas as the five indriyas, senses?
This kind of unauthorized commentation we do not do. Neither we allow anyone to handle Bhagavad-gītā by his whimsical interpretation. That we do not accept. That is paramparā system. Kṛṣṇa said to Arjuna that this Bhagavad-gītā was coming by disciplic succession:
- evaṁ paramparā-prāptam
- imaṁ rājarṣayo viduḥ
- sa kāleneha . . .
- yogo naṣṭaḥ parantapa
- (BG 4.2)
"Now the paramparā disciplic succession has been broken," yogaḥ naṣṭaḥ, naṣṭaḥ means broken, lost. "Therefore I am speaking unto you the same truth again, so that people may know."
But this is real fact. Bhagavad-gītā is spoken by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. In every page you'll find bhagavān uvāca, "the Supreme Personality of Godhead said." And . . . but all this big ācāryas of India who are practically . . . whose disciplic succession is controlling Indian Vedic culture—namely Śaṅkarācārya, Rāmānujācārya, Madhvācārya, Viṣṇu Svāmī, Lord Caitanya—all of them accepted Kṛṣṇa the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Even Śaṅkarācārya, he is impersonalist, brahmavādī, he also says in his commentary on Bhagavad-gītā, sa bhagavān svayaṁ kṛṣṇaḥ: "Kṛṣṇa the Supreme Personality of Godhead."
So . . . and Kṛṣṇa also not only accepted by the present ācāryas, but previously, long, long ago, five thousand years or more than that, Vyāsa, the original author of Vedic literature, he accepts Kṛṣṇa the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Before that we have got paramparā system, Vyāsa . . . before that, also.
As Vyāsadeva writes in his Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, after compiling Vedānta-sūtra, he begins: oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya janmādy asya yataḥ (SB 1.1.1). The Vedānta-sūtra begins with this aphorism that, "The Absolute Truth is that from whom everything emanates," satyaṁ paraṁ dhīmahi.
So Vyāsadeva accepts Kṛṣṇa as the Supreme Personality, Vāsudeva, oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya and if you say Vāsudeva means impersonal, all-pervading Brahma . . . Śrīdhara Svāmī comments, kṛṣṇāya. He gives his comments, kṛṣṇāya cinmakarundaya. And before Vyāsadeva, Vyāsadeva's spiritual master was Nārada. Nārada is a great devotee of Kṛṣṇa, and Nārada's spiritual master is Lord Brahmā. Brahmā also says in his Brahma-saṁhitā:
- īśvaraḥ paramaḥ kṛṣṇah
- anādir ādir govindaḥ
- (Bs. 5.1)
Sarva-kāraṇa-kāraṇam, everything is cause and effect. Your cause is your father, and your father is the effect of his father. But here Brahma-saṁhitā says cause of all causes, sarva-kāraṇa-kāraṇam. Actually God cannot be created by somebody else. He is the original cause. God has no cause. Everything has got cause, but God has no cause. That is the real definition of God. If God has a beginning, cause, then how He can be God? God is the origin. So these are the versions from Vedic literature.
- īśvaraḥ paramaḥ kṛṣṇah
- anādir ādir govindaḥ
- (Bs. 5.1)
God cannot be more than one. God is one. It is not that for Hindus there is one God and for Christians there is another God, or Muslims have got another God. No. God is one, and we are also one according to Bhagavad-gītā. We are all sons of God, Kṛṣṇa says in the Bhagavad-gītā. Mamaivāṁśo jīva-bhūta (BG 15.7): "The living entities, they are My parts and parcels."
Just like your children, they are parts and parcels of your body, similarly we, all living entities, not only human beings, but there are 8,400,000 species of living entities: aquatics, birds, beasts, trees, plants, then human being, civilized, uncivilized, of Vedic knowledge . . . so many varieties. But Kṛṣṇa claims that, "All of them are My sons."
- sarva-yoniṣu kaunteya
- sambhavanti mūrtayaḥ yāḥ
- tāsāṁ mahad yonir brahma
- ahaṁ bīja-pradaḥ pitā
- (BG 14.4)
So Kṛṣṇa has got unlimited sons, otherwise how He is God? If one common man can produce fifty children, hundred children, why God should be limited? God is unlimited, then He must have unlimited children. That is Bhagavad-gītā philosophy, that we are all, not only human being, but animals, beasts, birds, trees, plants, everyone. Everyone is living entity. That's a fact.
We are simply passing through different bodies. That is called transmigration of the soul, aśītiṁ caturaś caiva lakṣāṁs tāñ jīva-jātiṣu (Brahma-vaivarta Purāṇa). This evolutionary theory is . . . long, long ago, was discussed in the Purāṇas. That means at least five thousand years ago these things were discussed.
Darwin's theory is neither perfect, not new. Here in the Brahma-vaivarta Purāṇa you will find, aśītiṁ caturaś caiva lakṣāṁs tāñ jīva-jātiṣu. Aśītiṁ means eighty, and caturaś means four—eighty-four hundred thousand species of life, jīva-jātiṣu.
Bhramadbhiḥ puruṣaiḥ: in . . . through these all these different species of life the living entity is evolving greater intelligence, consciousness. Just like a flower is in the stage of a seed, then the tree, then the buds, then half-fructified, then fully fructified, rose. When it is fully fructified, the beauty and smell is very attractive. Similarly, the living entities, they are developing their consciousness through different types of body. This is willed.
So that is these different departments. But this is the fact: the evolution theory is accepted in Vedic literature in the sense that the living entity, according to his desire, he is getting a type of body, and there are 8,400,000 of different types of bodies. In this way he is passing through, and nature is giving him the chance of this human form of body with higher consciousness, greater intelligence to understand his real position.
Therefore Ṛṣabhadeva says that a human being, unless he comes to the standard of discussing about the constitutional position of the living entity, "What I am?" this question . . . in the human form of body, the enquiry is there, "What I am?" "What is this world?" "What is God?" "What is my relationship with God?" "Why I have come here?" "Where shall I go?" These are inquiries. These are called brahma jijñāsā, athāto brahma jijñāsā.
This human form of body is not meant for working very, very hard day and night to eat a plate of bread and butter, that's all. We have created a civilization at the present moment that everyone has to work just like an ass, day and night, for sense gratification. There is no other higher purpose. As we get money, we improve our program for sense gratification. I have got one car. As soon as I get more money, I am no more satisfied with one car; I must have four cars.
So this kind of civilization will never make you happy. That is instructed by Ṛṣabhadeva, na ayaṁ dehaḥ deha-bhājāṁ nṛloke kaṣṭān kāmān arhati yad viḍ-bhujām ye (SB 5.5.1). He instructed, "My dear boys, this human form of body is not meant for engaging day and night to find out something for sense gratification like the hogs." He has especially mentioned the name, kaṣṭān kāmān arhati yad viḍ-bhujām ye.
The hog is working day and night and finding out where is stool. His business is, "Where is stool? Where is stool?" And as soon as he eats stool he becomes very fatty. The hog is full of fat because he eats the nice thing, stool, full of hydro-phosphites; that is chemical analysis. Therefore he gets fatty. He eats only stool, but he gets very fatty, and people enjoy it. (laughter) People enjoy it. And Bernard Shaw, he says that "You are what you eat." (laughter) Yes.
So this is the . . . according to Vedic literature the present civilization is hog's civilization. This is our challenge: there may be great scientists and philosopher, but it is a hog's civilization. Because people are taught to work hard day and night, and after working hard, what is the remuneration? Sense gratification. Bring wine and women. That's all.
There is no other satisfaction. Dissatisfied, "Bring wine bottle. Let me forget." So every day I am meeting woman, but still I'm going to see naked dance. What is there in the naked dance? But because we have no other information what is happiness.
Therefore punaḥ punaś carvita-carvaṇānām (SB 7.5.30), chewing the chewed. First of all you chew something, just like a sugar cane, and you throw it, and if somebody comes he chews it, and what does he get? Therefore śastra says, punaḥ punaś carvita-carvaṇānām, matir na kṛṣṇe parataḥ svato vā. So the difficult position is people are very much enamored by sense gratification, kaṣṭān kāmān arhati yad viḍ-bhujām ye (SB 5.5.1).
We require sense gratification, that's all right, because we have got senses and it requires satisfaction, but not that to satisfy the senses like hogs and dogs. That is not human civilization, that is hog civilization. Because the hog, for sense gratification, he doesn't care whether it is his mother or sister or anything. You'll find, after eating stool, and the senses are strong, the hog will enjoy his mother, sister or anyone.
But human life is not meant for like that. According to Ṛṣabhadeva it is tapo divyaṁ putrakā yena śuddhyet sattva (SB 5.5.1). First of all we have to understand that what is the aim of life. The aim of life is to achieve the greatest pleasure of life. That is the aim. Ānandamayo'bhyāsāt, Vedānta-sūtra says. God is ānandamaya, always in pleasure.
You have seen our Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa picture, hmm? How pleasure. Kṛṣṇa-Balarāma picture, pleasing. So we are part and parcel of God. I have qualities also to enjoy pleasure because we have got part and parcel. Just like one small particle of gold, it is gold, as the big mine gold, but both of them are gold, only the quantity is different.
Similarly, God's identification is sac-cid-ānanda-vigraha, sat, cit, ānanda, vigraha. God is not formless. God has got form, exactly like you and me. In your Bible also it is said: "Man is made after God." Is it not? So if God has no hands and legs, how we have got hands and legs? (laughter) If we are sons of God, if father has no hands and legs, how the son can get hands and legs? Is it possible? Have any one of you begotten any child without hands and legs? It is not possible. Vigraha.
Therefore the Vedas says vigraha, the form. Vigraha means form. But what kind of form? A form like me? No. That is a different form. What is that? Sac-cid-ānanda. That form is sat, means eternal. Our this form is not eternal; therefore it is distinct. Cit means knowledge, full of knowledge. Our this body is full of ignorance; otherwise why are you coming to the university? (laughter)
So by nature this material body is neither eternal nor full of knowledge. Mostly we are rascals. (laughter) And ānanda, where is ānanda? Always full of anxiety. There is no ānanda. Therefore God has got body undoubtedly, but His body is not like this body.
Therefore in the Vedic language sometimes it has been defined as nirākāra. Nirākāra means not this form like this, cats and dogs only, so-called human beings. His form is different, sac-cid-ānanda-vigraha. And because we are part and parcels of God, just like son, if the father has got the form, the sons must have form.
We have also form. We have also spiritual form upon which this material form has developed. Just like if you cut your shirt and coat, the coat is impersonal cloth, long cloth. Now it is cut according to your hand. So because this hand we have got—it may be material—unless I have got spiritual hand, how this material hand can develop?
We have got also spiritual form, but that form, that spiritual form we cannot see with our material eyes, it is so imperfect. If we say that our eyes are very perfect, that's a wrong declaration, because our eyes are not perfect. Now we are seeing each other because the light is there. Unless there is light, the eyes cannot see.
So unconditionally our senses cannot work. That is material senses. And how we can appreciate this spiritual form either of the living entity or God? That is not possible. Therefore we have to purify the seeing power. When the eyes . . . just like eyes suffering from some disease, cataract, you cannot see through that eyes. But you purify the disease and you will be able to see nicely. Similarly, we have to spiritualize our senses, then we shall be able to see ourself and God also.
That purification is . . . just like at night you cannot see the sun. If you say: "I have got very powerful torchlight. I shall show you the sun. Come on," it is not possible. At night you cannot see the sun, neither yourself, but when the sun is arisen you can see the sun as well as yourself.
Therefore this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is just like to allow the Kṛṣṇa sun to rise so that you can see Kṛṣṇa and yourself and the whole creation. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. If you take to this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, then we shall be able to understand what I am, what is God, what is my relationship with God—so many things—which is known as brahma jijñāsā, athāto brahma jijñāsā.
So this movement is very serious and scientific and authorized. We request all ladies and gentlemen present here to understand this movement through authoritative literature, Vedic literature, and through persons who are realized souls, so then your life will be very successful.
Because this human life is meant for this purpose—not to create a hog civilization, dog civilization. No. Then you are losing the chance. Tad apy aphelatam jata . . . ah . . . ātmābhimānināṁ varākhānām anāśritya govinda-caraṇa-dvayam (Brahma-vaivarta Purāṇa).
This chance is because however proud we may be, death is sure. "As sure as death." We may be very much puffed up so long the life is continued, but we must know that we are under the grip of the stringent laws of nature. So after I give up this body, the nature will give me another body according to my mentality at the time of death. Yaṁ yaṁ vāpi smaran loke tyajaty ante kalevaram (BG 8.6).
At the time of death the mentality which we have created throughout your whole life, that will be prominent at that time, and according to that desire, prominent, you get the next life. So if your mentality at the time of death is God, then you get god's body next. And if the mentality is of a dog, then you get the dog's body. This is the science.
You cannot say that, "I am free. I am God. I can do anything." No. Daivī hy eṣā guṇa-mayī mama māyā duratyayā (BG 7.14). You cannot surpass the stringent laws of nature. That is not possible. It is very difficult. So nature gives us a certain type of body according to my last desire, because I am eternal part and parcel of God. God is eternal; I am also eternal. Part and parcel cannot be different. Therefore in the Vedas it is said:
- nityo nityānāṁ cetanaś cetanānām
- eko bahūnāṁ yo vidadhāti kāmān
- (Kaṭha Upaniṣad 2.2.13)
Muṇḍaka Upaniṣad. God means that He is the supreme eternal of all eternals. God is great—great eternal. We are also eternal, but small eternal, and because we are small eternal, therefore sometimes our eternity is choked up. Just like fragment of the fire—if it falls down from the fire it extinguishes, but the big fire does not extinguish.
This example is given that the living entity, although living entity is eternal, as soon as he comes in contact with this material nature he loses his spiritual consciousness and, forgetting himself, because he is hankering after the supreme happiness, he is thinking, "Let me become this; I'll be happy," "Let me become this; I'll be happy," "Let me become this, I'll be happy." He is, therefore, he is thinking like that, "I'll be happy in this way", therefore he has to undergo through different channels or different species of life.
So this is the science, and if we don't like to understand, that is a different subject matter. But this science is meant for understanding by the human being, not by the cats and dogs. Therefore we should take very serious attention for understanding this science of God, science of soul.
Unfortunately, there is no such institution throughout the whole world where this science is taught scientifically. Science of God is being neglected. Now they say: "God is dead," then they say: "Everyone is God. Why you are searching God? You are God, I am God." These things are going on.
So God is not so cheap. God is actually great. God is great: nobody can be equal to Him, nobody can be superior to Him. That is greatness. We say "God is great," but we do not know how God is great. That you can find in the Vedic literature, how God is great. In the Vedas it is said:
- yasyaika-niśvasita-kālam athāvalambya
- jīvanti loma-vila-jā jagad-aṇḍa-nāthāḥ
- viṣṇur mahān sa iha yasya kalā-viśeṣo
- govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi
- (Brahma-saṁhitā 5.48)
One part of Kṛṣṇa, Maha-Viṣṇu, is lying in the Causal Ocean, and through His breathing millions of universes are coming, and when he exhales and inhales they are being destroyed. That is God, who can create millions of universes simply by breathing. These are the description of God.
Not that by meditation one becomes God. God is not so cheap. We accept Kṛṣṇa, God, through the authorities of great ācāryas. In the Bhagavad-gītā (BG 13.8) it is said, ācāryopāsanam. Tad-vijñānārthaṁ sa gurum evābhigacchet (MU 1.2.12). Ācārya. Ācāryavān puruṣo veda. These are Vedic injunctions. Unless we go to ācārya in the paramparā system it is not possible to understand this science of God.
So it is a . . . the subject matter is very big; I don't think we can take so much time, but our appeal to you that this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement means to understand the science of God, the science of soul. But it is not that sentimentally these boys are dancing. No. This is a process, very easy process. If you also dance you will understand . . . you will be able to understand.
Therefore they are going on the street and dancing. But you also dance with us and understand God. Not that we are dancing without philosophy, without background of philosophy and science. Not that. We have got already published about one dozen big, big books, and our program is to publish at least seventy books like that. That is going on.
So there is science, there is philosophy, there is authority—everything is there. Simply we request you to understand it, science of Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Otherwise this is . . . working so hard for sense gratification, that kind of civilization is there amongst the hogs and dogs. Human civilization, being, they should be very sober, simple in living but high thought to get salvation from these clutches of birth and death. Eh?
Bhūtvā bhūtvā pralīyate (BG 8.19). How to get out. The whole Vedic system is planned how one can get out of this material clutches of repeated birth, death, old age and disease. As soon as you get a material body, these four things are there, birth, death, old age and disease. Our modern scientists, they cannot make any solution of these four problems. That is not possible. That is in the hands of nature, or God.
So if you want to get out of this clutches of janma-mṛtyu-jarā-vyādhi-duḥkha-doṣānudarśanam (BG 13.9), then you have to surrender unto God, as Kṛṣṇa says:
- sarva-dharmān parityajya
- mām ekaṁśaraṇaṁ vraja
- ahaṁ tvāṁ sarva-pāpebhyo
- mokṣayiṣyāmi mā śucaḥ
- (BG 18.66)
You have to become God conscious. You cannot deny the existence of God, "God is dead," "I am God," "You are God." No. These are not very good proposal. You try to understand what is God. We don't say that you try to understand God through our philosophy, you try to understand God through your philosophy, but try to understand God. That is our propaganda.
We say that become a lover of God. It doesn't matter whether through Christian religion you become a lover of God or through Hindu religion or through Muslim religion. We don't say that, that you follow this religion, that religion. We say your business is to know God and what is your relationship with God, and try to love God. Then you will be . . . (indistinct) . . . otherwise there is no question of happiness. This is our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement.
Thank you very much.
Devotees: All glories to Prabhupāda. All glories to Your Divine Grace. (obeisances)
Devotee: Hare Kṛṣṇa. Are there any questions? Anyone who has any questions, please take this opportunity to ask them personally to His Divine Grace.
Man guest: Where is Jesus Christ in relation to your movement?
Prabhupāda: Jesus Christ is the son of God, he says. There is no opposition. We accept him son of God, devotee of God.
Devotee: Does anyone else have a question?
Man guest (2): Do you believe that God is within every individual?
Prabhupāda: Oh, yes. Īśvaraḥ sarva-bhūtānāṁ hṛd-deśe 'rjuna tiṣṭhati (BG 18.61). God is sarva-bhūta: not only you and me; all living entities. We were talking of the hogs. He is also within the heart of the hog also, of the ant also. Aṇḍāntara-stha-paramāṇu-cayāntara-stham (Bs. 5.35). He is within the atom also. That is God, all-pervading, goloka eva nivasaty akhilātma-bhūto (Bs. 5.37). Although He is . . . just like we are here, but we are not in our apartment. God is not like that. God is within His kingdom; at the same time He is everywhere. That is God. God is not limited.
- ko 'py asau racayituṁ jagad-aṇḍa-koṭiṁ
- yac-chaktir asti jagad-aṇḍa-cayā yad-antaḥ
- govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi
- (Bs. 5.35)
By His one plenary expansion He is . . . jagad-aṇḍa-koṭiṁ, there are innumerable universes, and He has entered in each and every universe. Not only each and every universe; He has entered each and every living entity's heart. Not only every living entity, He is also within the atom.
Aṇḍāntara-stha-paramāṇu. Paramāṇu means atom. The atomic scientists, they are trying to find out, analyzing, and they are finding subtler, subtler, subtler form, but ultimately God is there.
Lady guest: . . . (indistinct)
Devotee: She wants to know how the knowledge is received from Kṛṣṇa.
Prabhupāda: Kṛṣṇa spoke, just like I am speaking, you are hearing. Similarly, Kṛṣṇa spoke, just like Kṛṣṇa spoke to Arjuna and Arjuna understood, and we are following Arjuna how he understood. That's all.
Devotee: The knowledge is handed through what is called paramparā. Paramparā means disciplic succession. Like the example Śrīla Prabhupāda has given us, that you take a piece of fruit from the top of a tree, and if you drop it to the ground it will smash.
But if you have a man in a branch lower, and a man next, next lower, you hand the fruit from one branch to the next, then there is no bruise. So similarly, knowledge of God is coming from God through his disciple Arjuna, and from Arjuna on down, and so His Divine Grace is simply in this line; he is passing on to us the same knowledge that he has received from his teacher. And his teacher was giving him the same knowledge that he received from his teacher.
Lady guest: . . . (indistinct)
Devotee: Arjuna. Well, yes.
Lady guest (2): . . . (indistinct)
Devotee: Well, Kṛṣṇa, as Śrīla Prabhupāda was explaining . . .
Prabhupāda: Kṛṣṇa appeared five thousand years ago from the present historical point of view; otherwise Kṛṣṇa is present always. Just like the sun is present always in the sky, but we have made our division: this is night, this is day. Actually sun is present both at night and day also. Is it not?
So because on this side of the planet it is now night, it does not mean that sun is finished, there is no more sun. Similarly Kṛṣṇa, or God, is always present. When we can see Him or we can understand Him, we think that God is here. Otherwise God is present always, everywhere; simply we have to see Him. We must get that qualified eyes.
Lady guest (3): What is the place of women in your religion?
Prabhupāda: Hmm? (laughter) Women?
Devotee: Everyone is spirit soul.
Prabhupāda: But one thing is that we are not speaking of any religion; we are speaking of the science of God, science of soul. It is not a religion. Religion is a faith. You believe something, that is religion, according to your English dictionary, "Religion is a kind of faith." That faith may be without any understanding, but science is not like that.
Science means you believe or not believe, it is a fact. So we are talking of Kṛṣṇa consciousness as a science of God, science of the living entity. That is not mine or your, it is your and mine and everyone's. As you say "your," there is nothing such "your"; it is your also.
Lady guest (3): I see one woman disciple. Are there others? One follower.
Devotee: (indistinct) . . . yes. She wants to know what is the place of women?
Devotee: What is the place of women in our movement?
Prabhupāda: Well, according to body there is distinction. But as soul there is no distinction. Paṇḍitāḥ sama-darśinaḥ (BG 5.18). One who is learned, he sees everyone on the same level, living entity—not only men, women, but also animals, dogs, cats, everyone.
- brāhmaṇe gavi hastini
- śuni caiva śva-pāke ca
- paṇḍitāḥ sama-darśinaḥ
- (BG 5.18)
That is wanted. Paṇḍita means who sees to the soul. Just like we are speaking, you are hearing. Now I am not seeing what is your dress; I am seeing as human being. You're also seeing me, not my dress.
Similarly, those who are actually learned, they do not see this body; they see the soul within the body, part and parcel of God. That is actual vision, not this body. And because we have got bodily concept of life, therefore we are thinking, "I am greater than you" or "You are greater than me," like that. This is bodily concept. So bodily concept will not help us for advancing in spiritual life.
Man guest (3): If this body . . . (indistinct) . . . is relatively not important, can you explain the dress of your male devotees and the hairstyle? And why . . . I don't think you have that same hairstyle. Can you explain that system?
Prabhupāda: From bodily appreciation there is difference, that I have already explained. But from spiritual platform there is no difference. We are now spirit souls encaged in this body. That encagement is different, but the soul is the same.
Man guest: But you were saying the hairstyles . . .
Devotee: He wants to know why we have our heads shaved and why we wear a śikhā.
Prabhupāda: And why you have got long hair? (laughter)
Devotee: Does anyone have another question?
Prabhupāda: Explain. Why you have got long hair?
Lady guest: What is the symbolism of it?
Prabhupāda: No, no, that is all right. These are not very important questions. If you ask why you are dressed in black, that is a system going on, just another. You try to understand the soul.
Indian man: Swāmījī, as the right understanding, persons, they say that religion and spiritual advancement cannot be obtained by meditation and mind control and so on and so on . . .
Prabhupāda: Well, if it is properly done. But meditation is difficult at the present moment, because we understand from śastras that Vālmīki Muni meditated for sixty thousands of years, and he got perfection. So meditation is there, but it is not for you in this present age. It is said in the śastra:
- kṛte yad dhyāyato viṣṇuṁ
- tretāyāṁ yajato makhaiḥ
- dvāpare paricaryāyāṁ
- kalau tad dhari-kīrtanāt
- (SB 12.3.52)
What was achieved in the Satya-yuga by meditation, what was achieved in the Tretā-yuga by performing great sacrifices, what was achieved in Dvāpara-yuga by arcanā, temple worship, those things are not possible in this age, Kali-yuga.
Therefore, kalau tad dhari-kīrtanāt: you have to achieve the same objective by hari kīrtana. This is the injunction of the śastra, and actually it is happening so.
So we have to follow the authorized method. Meditation . . . is not that we don't accept meditation. Meditation is very difficult for the present age, and the śastra also says that. So it is very difficult. If you have to obtain the ultimate objective, then you have to accept the process as recommended in the śastras.
Just like in a drug shop you go, it is not that something is medicine and something is nonsense. Everything is medicine. But the doctor sees the particular patient and he fixes up the medicine, "This is for you."
Similarly, meditation is also a process. There is recommendation in . . . but it is very difficult to execute this process in this age. We have to make any movement which is acceptable to everyone.
Now in our chanting, if you come to our Los Angeles temple, all the gṛhasthas are there; the small children, two years, three years, how they are chanting, dancing and reciting, you will be surprised. So this process is so easy and acceptable that everyone can take it.
So if you want to make some welfare activities, it must be for everyone, not that particular person. So this chanting process is so easy that everyone can accept—beginning from the most learned up to the lowest, a small child, without any preliminary knowledge.
Man guest: Your Grace, there is an industrial revolution going on in India. What is . . . (indistinct) . . . impact on the spiritual side . . . (indistinct) . . .?
Prabhupāda: Well industry, in your country also going on, but in spite of all industry and big, big universities, why your young men are becoming confused? Why? Why the universities are producing hippies? Eh?
I, I, when I was walking in a park in London, I saw so many young men, they are lying down on the ground. English boys, young men, why he is lying down on the street and park with the background of the British Empire? Why? Can you explain?
Man guest: Perhaps they are searching for something.
Prabhupāda: Why searching on that way, lying down on the street? (laughter) So India is imitating that thing. It is not very good thing. India has lost its own culture and now imitating industrialists. So they do not see what has happened to these industrial countries.
They do not see. They are simply thinking that, "Overnight we shall become like Americans and we shall be happy." But what the Americans are doing there? Why they are producing hippies? What is the remedy?
The conclusion is this industry or this or that will never make you happy unless you become God conscious. If you introduce God consciousness in industry, that is another thing. Otherwise:
- jātiḥ japas tapaḥ kriyaḥ
- aprāṇasya hi dehasya
- maṇḍanaṁ loka-rañjanam
- (CC Madhya 19.75)
Aprāṇasya hi dehasya: just like a dead man, a dead body, he should decorate it nicely. What is the value of this decoration? Similarly, the so-called economic development: decorating this dead body, without knowing what is the thing which is within the body that makes it moving. There is no knowledge, simply decorating the dead body.
So decorating the dead body may be pleasing to the decorator or some of his relatives, "Oh, my dead father is being decorated." Then what is the value of such decoration? Similarly, we may improve in so many ways, but if it is simply for the body, it is simply decoration of the body, dead body. Aprāṇasya hi dehasya maṇḍanaṁ loka-rañjanam.
So we do not take care of the spirit soul, which is the basic principle of this body. We do not know. So therefore Vedānta says, athāto brahma jijñāsā. Parābhavas tāvad abodha-jāto yāvan na jijñāsata ātma-tattvam (SB 5.5.5). Everything will be defeat only if one does not come to enquire about the soul, or God. Whatever we do, they are all defeat. We are not gaining anything.
Therefore all intelligent persons of the world, they should combine together and try to find out what is God, what is soul. These things are required. Industry you have done very much; nobody can excel in industry in your country. India may imitate, but they will be always hundred years back. Still we see whatever they have done, it is hundred years back than the Western countries. And the Western countries will improve. They are meant for that.
So we don't deprecate anything, because our body is made of matter and spirit, so both educations should go parallel. Not that blindly only material education. That will not make you happy. Take care of the body and take care of the soul. Just like encagement. A bird is within the cage. If you simply wash the cage, don't take care of the bird, then what is the situation? Tahn, tahn, tahn, tahn, tahn. (laughter)
So that tahn, tahn will not go. However you may materially advance, unless there is spiritual understanding, this tahn, tahn, tahn, tahn will go on, because he is hungry. Therefore, despite all this material advancement in America you are producing hippies.
So you should be careful about this. Everywhere; not only in America, in everywhere. In Calcutta there is also Naxalites. Unnecessarily they kill anyone, hopelessness. There is education amongst the Naxalites, they are a very educated person, boys. So why this frustration? The frustration is due to lack of spiritual education. That's all.
The same hippies, when they are coming to us, just see how they are happy. Harāv abhaktasya kuto mahad-guṇā manorathenāsati dhāvato bahiḥ (SB 5.18.12). Without God consciousness there cannot be any good qualification. That is not possible. Just the other day, hijack. Whatever newspaper?
Devotee: Aeroplane hijack.
Prabhupāda: Aeroplane hijack, you see? He has got sufficient education, or how he can control the pilot? How he can jump down with parachute? But the business is stealing, that's all. Thieves.
Therefore harāv abhaktasya kuto mahad-guṇā: without God conscious education you cannot make qualified anyone. That is not possible.
Devotees: All glories to Śrīla Prabhupāda. Jaya! (obeisances)
(audience claps) (cut) (end)