750525 - Lecture - Honolulu
(after Prahlāda-caritra play)
Prabhupāda: So this Prahlāda-caritra play, drama, is very instructive. Although it is not played on a very nice stage, theatrical, but the feeling expressed by the devotees in playing this Prahlāda-caritra has become very successful. We want to understand the feeling. Externally, we may not be very much equipped. Kṛṣṇa takes the feeling. Bhāva-grāhī janardana.
So Prahlāda Mahārāja is one of the great personality in devotional line. Dharmasya tattvaṁ nihitaṁ guhāyāṁ, mahājano yena gataḥ sa panthāḥ (CC Madhya 17.186). It is very difficult to understand what is the purpose of religious principle. People actually do not know what is religion; therefore we have got so many religious system, man-made, or concocted ideas. Actually, religion means the law given by God. That is religion. Dharmaṁ tu sākṣād bhagavat-praṇītam (SB 6.3.19). Just like the law given by the state, by the government, you have to accept it. There is no question that the government is Christian government or Muhammadan government or Hindu government. It doesn't matter. The law given by the government, you must accept. You cannot deny it. So actually God is neither Hindu God nor Muhammadan God nor Christian God. God is God. His power is omnipotent. It is equally applicable to Hindu, to Muslim, to Christian—anyone—to animal, to human being. Just like God has given this law, "You must die." This is applicable to everyone—Hindu, Muslim, Christian, man, animal, trees, birds, beasts, everyone. It cannot be disobeyed. That is law. That is God's law. You may be very much advanced in knowledge or so-called science, but because God says that in the material life you must die, you cannot avoid this law. That is called dharma. Dharma means the characteristic, that God has given this law that everyone should die; therefore all living beings' characteristic is that he must die. This is called religion. Similarly, God says that "You are My eternal servant. You must obey Me." That is religion. You try to understand the meaning of religion. Religion means the law given by God, and you must accept it. That is religion.
So people do not know. They manufacture religion. So how you can manufacture religion? Law can be given by the king, by the state, by the government. If you manufacture some law at your home, consulting your wife or father and mother, who will accept it? Nobody will accept. You may be puffed up that you have manufactured a law, but nobody will care for it. The law given by the state will have to be accepted, either you like it or don't like it. The law will not depend on your liking and disliking. You must accept. If you don't accept, then you are a law breaker; you will be punished. Similarly, the religion means, as Kṛṣṇa says in the Bhagavad. . . sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja (BG 18.66). That is religion, that "You have manufactured so many types of religion. You give it up. Kick it out. This is religion: you surrender unto Me." So if you become a surrendered soul to God—that means you become a devotee—then you are religionist. Otherwise you are criminal. Therefore śāstra says that you should follow the great devotees. That is religion. You cannot manufacture religion, you cannot concoct religion. You just try to follow the great personalities, and that is religion.
So there. . . In the śāstra there are great personalities. They have been mentioned. Just like Lord Brahmā, Nārada Muni, Lord Śiva, then Kumāras, then Kapila, Manu and Prahlāda. Prahlādo janako bhīṣmo (SB 6.3.20). Prahlāda Mahārāja, he is one of the great personalities who knows what is religion. So he practiced it. Unfortunately, he was born of a atheist father, Hiraṇyakaśipu. But by the grace of Nārada Muni he knew what is religion. You have seen in the play that when his mother was pregnant, the demigods were taking her to the prison just to keep her observed, observation, that the child which is born of a atheist father, Hiraṇyakaśipu, may not be missed. They wanted to kill him also. But although he was born of an atheist father, demoniac father, he became a great devotee by the instruction of Nārada Muni. Nārada Muni took his poor mother. He asked the demigods, "Why you are harassing this lady? After all, she is woman. She is dependent." So by the order of Nārada Muni they let her go, and her husband was engaged in tapasya, so she had no protection. Therefore Nārada Muni took her at his āśrama and instructed her about God consciousness. That is the duty of saintly person. So Prahlāda Mahārāja, while he was within the womb of his mother, he heard all those instructions. His mother, in due course of time—that is the nature of woman—she forgot the instruction. But Prahlāda Mahārāja remembered; therefore he became a great devotee. This is the history of Prahlāda Mahārāja.
So Prahlāda Mahārāja became a devotee, not a so-called devotee, that "If my senses are gratified, then I shall continue to remain a devotee. Otherwise I shall slip away, go away. That's all." So he was not such kind of devotee. He remained devotee in all circumstances. You see his father wanted to chastise him in so many ways. But what was Prahlāda's fault? He was chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa, and the father did not like it. So he wanted to induce him to stop this Hare Kṛṣṇa, but he never stopped. In all circumstances he remained steady in. . . when he was thrown into the boiling water. . . It is said oil. He was put into the oil. So he remained steady. So many demonic persons threatened him; he remained steady. His mother was instructed by the father to give poison in the food. So he remained steady. Then the father understood that "My son has got some mystic power." The mystic power was that he was a great devotee of Kṛṣṇa, that's all. A devotee never practices any mystic power. But a devotee, being protected by the supreme mystic, Kṛṣṇa, a devotee is never in danger in all circumstances. That is the instruction in this. . .
So just to try. . . Try to remain a devotee always, and Kṛṣṇa will give you protection in all circumstance. There is no fear. Devotees, they remain devotee of Kṛṣṇa, and Kṛṣṇa does everything. If something mystic or magic has to be shown, the devotee does not take any credit for that magic, because the magic is done by Kṛṣṇa for the sake of devotee. So he doesn't require to learn the art of magic to cheat the people. That is not. When magic is required, Kṛṣṇa plays. Kṛṣṇa is called Yogeśvara. Yoga is mystic power, and He is the Yogeśvara, master of all yogeśvara. . . yoga, mystic power. Yatra yogeśvaraḥ hariḥ. Just like Kṛṣṇa was on the chariot of the Kurukṣetra battle, Arjuna. Arjuna was facing enemies, big, big enemies like Bhīṣma, Karṇa, Dronācārya and many others who were very, very powerful. Arjuna was nothing before them. They are compared with timiṅgala. Timiṅgala - a big fish which swallows up the whale fishes. So Mahārāja Parīkṣit said that "Although they were timiṅgala-like, they could kill thousands of Arjuna, but still, because You were protecting him, sitting on his chariot, they were killed; Arjuna was not killed."
So the devotee, he doesn't require to acquire any mystic power. What mystic power Prahlāda could attain? He was only five years old. So there was no opportunity of acquiring any mystic power. But he was being protected by the supreme mystic, Kṛṣṇa. That should be a devotee's point of view. Don't waste your time for acquiring so-called mystic power. Just devote yourself to remain a pure devotee of Kṛṣṇa, and you become the supreme mystic. That is confirmed in the Bhagavad-gītā:
- yoginām api sarveṣāṁ
- śraddhāvān bhajate yo māṁ
- sa me yuktatamo mataḥ
- (BG 6.47)
There are many yogīs, mystics, but Kṛṣṇa confirms that "Of all the yogīs, of all the mystic, a person who is always thinking of Me," śraddhāvān bhajate yo mām, yoginām api sarveṣāṁ mad-gatenāntarātmanā, "always thinking Me, Kṛṣṇa, within himself:
- Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare
- Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare."
So Kṛṣṇa said, "he is the best yogī." Yoginām api sarveṣāṁ. Sarveṣam means "of all." "Of all kinds of yogīs, the best yogī is who is always thinking of Me."
That is Kṛṣṇa's philosophy. He is teaching in the Bhagavad-gītā, man-manā bhava mad-bhakto mad-yājī māṁ namaskuru (BG 18.65). Four things. If you sincerely do these four things—always think of Kṛṣṇa, man-manā; just become His devotee, man-manā bhava mad-bhakto; mad-yājī, worship Kṛṣṇa. . . Just like we do in the temple room. Man-manā. . . You can do worship anywhere if you are a devotee. A devotee can worship Kṛṣṇa anywhere, underneath a tree, because Kṛṣṇa is in everyone's heart, īśvaraḥ sarva-bhūtānāṁ hṛd-deśe 'rjuna tiṣṭhati (BG 18.61). So if underneath a tree you think of Kṛṣṇa and chant Hare Kṛṣṇa, that is sufficient. Kṛṣṇa does not require any big paraphernalia. He only wants how you are a sincere devotee. That's all. And that devotional service can be discharged in any condition. Ahaituky apratihatā (SB 1.2.6). It cannot be checked by the material circumstances. This is the process of Kṛṣṇa consciousness.
And you see the five-years-old boy, how he was protected from all kinds of dangers, and he refused to take any benediction. He refused. The devotee should not be a mercantile man: "If You give me something, then I shall give You something." That is business. A devotee is not like that. He understands that he is eternal servant of Kṛṣṇa, his duty is to serve Kṛṣṇa. In the material world a servant works when money is paid, wages. A devotee is not like that. A devotee serves Kṛṣṇa out of duty. That is God consciousness, Kṛṣṇa consciousness, that "It is my duty." And then Kṛṣṇa takes the responsibility, "It is My duty to protect this devotee." This reciprocation is called Kṛṣṇa consciousness. There is no question of business transaction. Then he will be protected. Kṛṣṇa is nobody's servant, but everyone is Kṛṣṇa's servant. If everyone becomes Kṛṣṇa's servant, then everyone is protected by Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is protecting. Kṛṣṇa is God, so He is protecting everyone, He is giving food everyone, but especially inclined to the devotees. Samaḥ sarveṣu-bhūteṣu (BG 18.54).
There is a verse, samo 'haṁ sarva-bhūteṣu na me dveśyo 'sti na priyaḥ (BG 9.29). Kṛṣṇa says. . . God must be equal to everyone. God is one, so He is giving everyone food. The birds, beasts, they are getting food. The elephant he is also getting food. So who is supplying him food? Kṛṣṇa, God, is supplying. So in that way He is equal to everyone in ordinary dealing. But especially deals with the devotees. Just like Prahlāda Mahārāja. When he was put into danger, then Lord Nṛsiṁha-deva came personally to give him protection. That is the special duty of God. That is not unnatural. If somebody says, "God is partial, that He takes special care of His devotee," no, that is not partiality. Just like a gentleman—in the neighborhood, he loves all children, but when his own child is in danger, he takes special care. That is not unnatural. You cannot blame him, that "Why you are taking special care of your own child?" No. That is natural. Nobody will blame him. Similarly, everyone is God's sons, but His devotee is special. That is God's special attention. Ye tu bhajanti māṁ prītyā teṣu te mayi. So God is giving protection to every living entity, but if you become devotee of the Lord, pure devotee, without any motive, then God will take special care of you. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, that we are being harassed by māyā, the material energy, and if we take shelter of Kṛṣṇa then we will be specially protected.
- Mām eva prapadyante
- māyām etāṁ taranti te
- (BG 7.14)
So try to become devotee of Kṛṣṇa. Our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is teaching this philosophy. We have got so many books. Whoever comes here must read the books, devotee, the inmates of the temple, outsider, then you will understand what is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Or you should chant Hare Kṛṣṇa only. Don't talk rubbish things, waste time. That is not good. A single moment is so valuable that you cannot purchase it by millions of dollars. Now today is 25th May, four o'clock gone. You cannot bring it back. Four o'clock, 25th May, 1975, if you want to get it back again by paying millions of dollars, it will not be possible. Therefore we should be very careful of our time. Time once wasted, you cannot get it back return. Better utilize this time. The best utilization is to chant Hare Kṛṣṇa or think of Kṛṣṇa, worship Kṛṣṇa. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement.
Thank you very much.
Devotees: Jaya Prabhupāda. (end).