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760517 - Lecture SB 06.01.17 - Honolulu

His Divine Grace
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

760517SB-HONOLULU - May 17, 1976 - 25.13 Minutes

Prabhupāda: Oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevaya. Oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevaya. (devotees repeat) Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, Sixth Canto, Chapter One, verse number seventeen. (leads devotees in chanting)

sadhrīcīno hy ayaṁ loke
panthāḥ kṣemo 'kuto-bhayaḥ
suśīlāḥ sādhavo yatra
(SB 6.1.17)


"The path followed by pure devotees, who are well behaved and fully endowed with the best qualifications, is certainly the most auspicious path in this material world. It is free from fear, and it is authorized by the śāstras."

So this is the summarization of our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, that the path followed by pure devotees. Pure devotees means who has no material desire. That is pure devotee. Anyābhilāṣitā-śūnyam (Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu 1.1.11). Śūnya means zero, one who has made all material desires zero. That is the way. In the Buddha philosophy it is called nirvāṇa. Nirvāṇa means make zero, śūnyavādi. But we cannot remain in the śūnya. That is not possible. Śūnyavādī-nirvāṇa means to give up material desires. It is not possible to give up desires. That is not possible. To give up desires means I am dead body, a stone. If I have got life, if I am not a stone, there must be desires. So where is the living entity who has no desires? That is not possible. If we kill somebody to make him desireless, that "If you are killed, then there will be no more desire," no, the desire will continue in the subtle body. Even one is finished, this material body . . . sometimes they commit suicide out of frustration, that "This desire is not fulfilled. Let me commit suicide." No. That is ignorance. Desires continue in the subtle body—mind, intelligence and ego. And to fulfill the desire, Kṛṣṇa will give you another body. If we make a desire, it must be fulfilled, and Kṛṣṇa will give you facilities. Bhrāmayan sarva-bhūtāni yantrārūḍhāni māyayā (BG 18.61). Desire is so strong. So how to make it zero? That is not possible. To make it zero means no more material desire. That is to make zero material desires. Sarvopādhi-vinirmuktam (CC Madhya 19.170).

That is more lucidly explained in the Nārada-bhakti-sūtra. Desire means we should give up the desire of this body of designation: "I am Indian; you are American," "I am Hindu; you are Christian." These are all designation of the body. I . . . accidentally I am born in India; therefore I call myself Indian. You are accidentally . . . not accidentally; some way or other born in . . . you are American. Accidentally somebody takes birth in the Hindu family; he becomes Hindu. Accidentally he takes birth in the Christian family; he becomes Christian. These are all designation. So when we give up this designation, that is desirelessness. Designation. Everyone is acting, they are fighting, they are making so many plans. Why? "We are Indian" or "We are American," "We are Russian, and the Russian must exceed the Americans," "Americans must exceed . . ." This is going on, on the platform of designation. When we change the platform and we simply desire how to serve Kṛṣṇa, that is desirelessness. Otherwise not that desirelessness means I become zero. That is not possible. Because I am a living being, I am living soul; how can I be desire . . . (break) . . . loke panthāḥ kṣemo 'kuto-bhayam (SB 6.1.17). If you want to be designationless, then come to the association of such persons who are suśīlāḥ sādhava yatra nārāyaṇa-parāyaṇāḥ (SB 6.1.17), persons who are simply interested in serving Nārāyaṇa. Nārāyaṇa parāyaṇa means . . . parāyaṇa means they're always ready to abide by the orders of Nārāyaṇa. Nārāyaṇa . . . those who have taken the path of Nārāyaṇa, devotional service, as their life and soul, they are called nārāyaṇa-parāyaṇāḥ.

So what is the qualification of nārāyaṇa-parāyaṇa? It does not require any qualification to become nārāyaṇa-parāyaṇa, but if you become voluntarily nārāyaṇa-parāyaṇa . . . nārāyaṇa-parāyaṇa means my life is now dedicated for Nārāyaṇa. Nārāyaṇa, Kṛṣṇa, Viṣṇu, they're the same. So that is qualification, if you simply take it as vow that "From this day my life is dedicated to Nārāyaṇa, Kṛṣṇa." Sarvopādhi vinirmuktaṁ tat paratvena nirmalam (CC Madhya 19.170). As soon as we take this vow, that "From this day my life is dedicated to Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa wants everyone to surrender. I surrender. I believe," from that day you become free from all designation. Simply this determination, that "From this day I belong to Nārāyaṇa, or Kṛṣṇa. Whatever He wants . . ." That is the teachings of Bhagavad-gītā. So long Arjuna . . . that is a superficial picture. Arjuna is always for Kṛṣṇa, but just to teach us, he became for his family. He became . . . in the war field, when there was to be fighting, he became to the family side, and he said, "My dear Kṛṣṇa, how can I fight with my family? They are my brothers, they are my nephews, they are my grandfather, they are my teacher, the other . . ." Because it was a family fight, five brothers and hundred brothers. So at the war field he became perplexed, that "I am fighting with my family. The fight means to fight with enemies. How is that? What kind of war it is? Eh? I have to fight with family." He said, Kṛṣṇa, "So who has taught this kind of fighting, Kṛṣṇa, to kill his own brother, his nephews and . . .?" Therefore that means he leaned to the family side. This is designation. This is designation. Because he belonged to the Kuru's family he took side of the family. But after hearing Bhagavad-gītā, after understanding Kṛṣṇa, when he came to the conclusion that "I must be with Kṛṣṇa's side, not to the family side," then he became perfect. After hearing thoroughly Bhagavad-gītā, he . . . Kṛṣṇa said, "Now what you will do? To the family side or My side?" Yathecchasi. That freedom is there. Yathecchasi: "Whatever you like, you can do. I have given My instruction."

That freedom is there always. The Kṛṣṇa or His representative, the spiritual master, he can give you good instruction, good advice, but to do it or not to do it, that is your option. That is your option. You decide yourself. That is the . . . Kṛṣṇa said, yathecchasi tathā kuru (BG 18.63): "I am not interfering with your independence. I am dealing as your spiritual master, and you accepted Me as your spiritual master." Kṛṣṇa was accepted, Arjuna, śiṣyas te 'ham: "Kṛṣṇa, no more friendly talk. I accept You as my spiritual master." Śiṣyas te 'haṁ śādhi māṁ prapannam (BG 2.7). "What kind of disciple?" Now, prapannam, fully surrendered: "Now whatever You will say, I'll do." This is śiṣya. Śiṣya I have several times explained, śās-dhātu. Who voluntarily accepts the ruling of a person, he is śiṣya. And otherwise, "You go on talking whatever nonsense you can. I'll do my own business," that is not śiṣya. Śiṣya means śiṣyas te 'haṁ śādhi māṁ prapannam (BG 2.7). Tad viddhi praṇipātena (BG 4.34). That is śiṣya.

So Kṛṣṇa taught him Bhagavad-gītā. Then, still, He gave him the freedom, yathecchasi tathā kuru (BG 18.63): "Now Arjuna, I have instructed you everything. Now you decide what to do." It is not force. Reply was that now, naṣṭo moho smṛtir labdhā (BG 18.73): "My illusion is now over. I have got . . . I am now remembering what I am." That remembering means "I am not belonging to this family." Tvat prasādād madhusūdana. Smṛtir labdhā. Smṛtir. This is . . . in the material world we have lost our memory that "I am part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa, and my duty is to serve Kṛṣṇa." This is our position. This is called illusion. Just like this finger is the part and parcel of my body. So what is the duty of this finger? To abide by the order of the body. I want, "Finger, you stand like this"; the finger is standing. "You come here," "Yes." That is part and parcel. That is part and parcel. So if we are part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa, our only duty is to serve Kṛṣṇa. There is no other duty. But we have created so many duties, and that is designation.

So we can be designationless when you live with the pure devotees of Kṛṣṇa. Therefore it is said that suśīlāḥ sādhavo yatra (SB 6.1.17). That path is very nice. Akuto bhayam, fearlessness. Where? Now, suśīlāḥ sādhavo yatra: "Where well-behaved saintly persons are there." Well behaved. It is the first word, suśīla. Śīla means character, very nice character. A devotee cannot be bad character. Because Kṛṣṇa is paraṁ brahma paraṁ dhāma pavitram (BG 10.12)—pavitra means pure—so impure cannot approach Him. That is not possible. If you want to enter fire, you must be fire. And if you are not fire, then you will burn. So first of all we have to revive, because Kṛṣṇa . . . the example is given that Kṛṣṇa is the big fire and we are sparks of fire. We are also fire, very small. The sparks of fire can play, can remain within fire, and it is beautiful: "phat! phat!" There is spark, you have seen while fire is going on. It is very beautiful. And as soon as this "phat! phat!" falls down, separate from the . . . it is extinguished. No more fire. It is black charcoal, that's all. So if we want happiness, then we have to dance with Kṛṣṇa. But you cannot dance Kṛṣṇa if I am not pure. Kṛṣṇa is pavitraṁ paramaṁ bhavān. Pavitra means the supreme pure. So if you want to take pleasure in the company of Kṛṣṇa and dance rasa dance, then you have to become pure, purified. That is sarvopādhi vinirmuktam (CC Madhya 19.170), to free from all designation. Nārāyaṇa parāyaṇa. Nārāyaṇa society or Kṛṣṇa society, the same thing.

So this is very nice verse, substance of Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, that those who are conducting this movement, they must be suśīla, very well behaved; nobody can find out any fault. That is suśīla, well behaved. The behavior should be so nice. That is the test how you have become Kṛṣṇa conscious. That is the test. Spotless. You study Caitanya Mahāprabhu's behavior, character—He's ideal. Throughout His whole life you'll not find a spot. You read Caitanya-caritāmṛta. Find out some fault, that "Here is Caitanya . . . Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya is faulty." No. That is suśīla. And that is sādhu. Sādhava. Sādhava means sādhu, saintly person. What is saintly person?

titikṣavaḥ kāruṇikāḥ
suhṛdaḥ sarva-bhūtānām
ajāta-śatravaḥ śāntāḥ
sādhavaḥ sādhu-bhūṣaṇāḥ
(SB 3.25.21)

This is the definition of a sādhu. What is that? Titikṣava, very, very tolerant. Just see Christ, ideal character, how tolerant he is. He was being crucified; still he is merciful. Similarly anywhere, those who are actually sādhu, saintly persons, they are very tolerant. Kṣamā-rūpa tapasvinām. That is the qualification of sādhu: titikṣava. At the same time kāruṇika, merciful. The others are torturing him, but still he is merciful.

That is the qualification of sādhu. Titikṣava kāruṇikā. Why? Suhṛdaḥ sarva-bhūtānām: "He is friend of everyone." There is no distinction that "He is American," "He is Indian," "He is Christian," "He is Hindu," "He is dog," "He is cat," "He is man . . ." No. He is kind to everyone. Why we are preaching "No meat-eating"? If you stop meat-eating, then the poor animals will be saved. So what business we have got with the animals? Suhṛdaḥ sarva-bhūtānām. A saintly person is friend to everyone. "Why unnecessarily a animal should be killed?" That is his feeling. You can eat animals because by nature this is the arrangement, that ahastāni sa-hastānām (SB 1.13.47). Even we eat vegetable, that is also killing. But because I have to kill somebody to eat, that does not mean that I can kill my child also. Of course that is also going on now. There is discrimination. Similarly, the . . . our principle is that we are kind, merciful, to everyone. But we have to eat, so we eat Kṛṣṇa prasādam. Because after all, Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme Lord. So if He eats something, the responsibility is His. But we are not advocate of vegetarianism or nonvegetarianism. No. That is not our business. We are Kṛṣṇa-ites. What Kṛṣṇa said, we have to do. Therefore sādhu, suhṛt. Suhṛdaḥ sarva-bhūtānām. Sādhu is not enemy. Ajāta-śatrava. He does not create enemy, but the world is such that if you become devotee, even your father will be enemy. Prahlāda Mahārāja, five-years-old boy, what was his fault? He became a devotee, and his father was prepared to kill him. This is world. So he does not create an enemy, but these demons, rascals, out of their jealousy they become our enemy. Otherwise our process is not to make enemy. We invite everyone, "Please come here, take prasādam, chant Hare Kṛṣṇa, dance and go home." Where is enmity? (laughter) But still, they'll become enemy. This is the world. But if he lives with the sādhava, suśīla, and follows the rules and regulation, then he also becomes sādhava. Saṅgāt sanjāyate kāmaḥ (BG 2.62). Just like if you mix with the drunkards, thieves and rogues, then you also become a drunkard, thief; similarly, if we live with the sādhu, sādhava, then you become sādhu.

So the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is simply giving chance to people without any discrimination, "Please come. Become nārāyaṇa-parāyaṇa, devotee, and automatically you'll become suśīla and sādhu." As soon as—that is the test—you become a devotee, nārāyaṇa-para, then automatically you become suṣīla and sādhava. And if you become well behaved and sādhava, committing no sinful activities, sādhava, and simply serving Nārāyaṇa, or Kṛṣṇa, then for our elevation or salvation, that is the panthāḥ kṣemo akuto-bhayaḥ (SB 6.1.17). Akuto-bhayam. Now we are fearless. If you are on the devotional path, then you have no fear. Why? Now, Kṛṣṇa takes charge of you. Kṛṣṇa says, kaunteya pratijānīhi na me bhaktaḥ pranaśyati (BG 9.31): "Kaunteya, Arjuna, you can declare throughout the whole world that one who has become My devotee, he will never be vanquished." Kaunteya pratijānīhi na me bhaktaḥ pranaśyati. You get immediately Kṛṣṇa's help. So if we depend completely on Kṛṣṇa, Nārāyaṇa, nārāyaṇa-para, then automatically we become sādhu, automatically we become well behaved, and automatically we are protected. Therefore this path is the best way of advancing in our life and go back to home, back to Godhead.

Thank you very much.

Devotees: Jaya. (end)