Loving Formless Means No Love At All

Srila Prabhupada
Srila Prabhupada

Prabhupāda: How many of you went?

Guru dāsa: Most everyone, about twenty-five.

Prabhupāda: (indistinct)

Guru dāsa: At first they went, (indistinct) Kāliya, that Kāliya tree, and then Madana-mohana, new and old, and then to the samādhi, (indistinct) samādhi, and then I left (indistinct). Dr. Kapoor came this morning?

Devotee: No.

Guru dāsa: No?

Devotee: I wasn't here. I went to sleep for a few minutes.

Prabhupāda: Thank you. You have come from where?

Guest (1): Just now from the Hanumān Mandir, just down the road there, not far, but I'm, we're all from America.

Prabhupāda: Here you are remaining there?

Guest: We live there during the day, and at night we stay at the Jaipuria Bhavan(?), a guesthouse just down (indistinct).

Devotee: He's living (indistinct).

Guest: Nim Karoli Baba. We were just now with Nim Karoli, taking darśana of Baba Nim Karoli.

Prabhupāda: Nim Karoli?

Guest: Nim Karoli. And he asked us to come here to this place and ask... He requested a kīrtana at the temple. He would like some of the people here to come and sing a kīrtana, if you, if you, if you wish.

Prabhupāda: Kīrtana we hold here. If we have to go individually everyone's house, how it is possible?

Guest: I, I don't know. I'm just... He asked me to come and request it, so...

Prabhupāda: We are holding kīrtana here, morning and evening if one is interested.

Guest (2): There are about thirty Westerners there.

Prabhupāda: Huh?

Guest (2): We have thirty Westerners there, that everyday we go to a Mahārāja's darśana.

Prabhupāda: Thirty Westerners?

Guest (1): Yes, that's right.

Prabhupāda: Oh. That, I have no objection, (indistinct) those who are organizing. You are also staying?

Guest (2): Yes.

Guest (1): The three of us came. He sent three of us to ask.

Guru dāsa: Do you have any, any other questions?

Guest (1): No, that's all. That just explains our presence here at the moment.

Guru dāsa: You don't have to explain your presence in (indistinct).

Guest (1): Thank you.

Prabhupāda: Where is the Deity?

Devotee: Taken on saṅkīrtana.

Prabhupāda: Take your time and...

Devotee: Saṅkīrtana, when you're able.

Guru dāsa: She (Guest 3) was attending all the lectures at the pandal in Delhi.

Prabhupāda: Yes, I have seen her.

Guru dāsa: And Philadelphia also.

Prabhupāda: So, you understand our philosophy?

Guest (3): Understand...?

Prabhupāda: Our philosophy?

Guest (1): Philosophy.

Guest (3): Yes, I do. I think I do. (laughs) I was in New York at Hare Kṛṣṇa (indistinct) time, and we have a temple in our apartment, picture of the Deities.

Prabhupāda: Where?

Guest (3): Philadelphia.

Prabhupāda: Oh.

Guest (3): And we do the āratik and read all your books.

Prabhupāda: Which book?

Guest (3): Śrī Īśopaniṣad, Lord Caitanya, Kṛṣṇa book, (indistinct).

Guru dāsa: Prabhupāda's going to put out a book called Thus They Spoke, with all the philosophers and refute them by Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Refute them all (indistinct).

Guest (1): Different schools of philosophy.

Guru dāsa: Yeah. Especially attacking Darwin.

Guest (1): Darwinism. Yes, by all means. That's good.

Guru dāsa: They tried, but they weren't, they weren't God conscious. They were (indistinct).

Hayagrīva: The philosophers, you know, they were just men trying to figure, figure it out with their minds.

Prabhupāda: They are all, so far we have studied all these philosophers, they (indistinct). They are lacking in knowledge. The main difference is that they consider the body as the self, and on that wrong basis they theorize (indistinct). If your basic standing is wrong, then how you can deliver the right? Therefore in Bhāgavata, Śrīmad Bhāgavata, it is said that yasyātma-buddhiḥ kuṇape tri-dhātuke sva-dhīḥ kalatrādiṣu bhauma-ijya-dhīḥ: [SB 10.84.13] "Anyone who considers this body as his self is no better than the ass and the cow." What is your philosophy? You consider this body as the self?

Guest (1): I... Oh, no.

Prabhupāda: You?

Guest (2): No.

Prabhupāda: Very good. So we begin by (indistinct)?

Śyāmasundara: Uh, from the Rādhā Dāmodara. I don't know.

Guru dāsa: I've got three keys to that room open.

Śyāmasundara: Perhaps Subala has already made arrangements.

Prabhupāda: So, what is your philosophy?

Guest (1): My philosophy?

Prabhupāda: Yes.

Guest (1): The body is not the self. The self, or the ātmān, is the one absolute existence, but is has a delusive power whereby...

Prabhupāda: Who is that God? Delusive power?

Guest (1): God, or...

Devotee: God?

Guest (1): ...the māyā, the māyā of God makes, makes a man identify himself with his body, but it is, that's an illusion, and it's God's play that sometimes..., it's God's play that sometimes a man ignorantly identifies himself with the body, and through God's grace the bonds of ignorance are..., he is released from the bonds of ignorance through God's grace.

Prabhupāda: By God's grace, what happens?

Guest (1): One cannot... One achieves, one attains love for God, pure love. And, uh, by loving God, one, one, uh, one's..., one no longer identifies himself with his body.

Prabhupāda: So result of loving God, what it is?

Guest (1): Without loving God?

Prabhupāda: No.

Devotee: Result.

Prabhupāda: Result is what?

Guest (1): Of loving God? Yes.

Prabhupāda: What will come?

Guest (1): Is union with God. Union with God.

Devotee: What is that union?

Guest (1): What is union? Union, I think it, it's called yoga, or it's samādhi. I don't really know so much about it. Just what I've read.

Prabhupāda: Now what is the name, what you expressed by union? Just like you are there; I am here. You speak of union. What is the form of unity?

Guest (1): What is the form of unity?

Prabhupāda: Yes.

Guest (1): My understanding is that, that, um, the spirit, God, the Supreme Spirit, is beyond form, but yet through loving...

Prabhupāda: Beyond form.

Guest (1): ...through loving the form of God... It has form and yet it's formless. It's both..., has form and formless.

Prabhupāda: What is that formlessness, and what is that form?

Guest (1): That I can't say. What do I know about these things? My own knowledge is just very slight.

Prabhupāda: You are not learning there, where you are staying?

Guest (1): I'm learning. I'm learning love. It's, Mahārāja..., this Nim Karoli Baba, has told us that love, love of God is the highest.

Prabhupāda: But love, if you have no form where to love? The air?

Guest (1): You love the form, it's true. You have bhakti, you love the form of God.

Prabhupāda: But you said it's formless.

Guest (1): Ah, yes. Well, it's, uh, that, I've read the...

Prabhupāda: How it is? How, if is formless, how you can love, enjoy?

Guest (1): You can't love the formless, it's true.

Prabhupāda: Yes. Fictitious love. Why don't you ask this intelligent question? If you say formless, then where is the love?

Guest (1): He doesn't teach the formless. That was my own view, but that is not anything that he's ever taught me.

Prabhupāda: What does he teach?

Guest (1): He said...

Prabhupāda: He teaches form?

Guest (1): He says that... Yes. He is a great bhakta of Hanumānji.

Prabhupāda: Who is Hanumān?

Guest (1): Hanumān is the breath of Rāma.

Prabhupāda: Huh?

Guest (1): The breath of Rāma, svasa. Rāma-ke-svasa, breath of Rāma.

Prabhupāda: Breath?

Guest (1): The breath. Hanumān was the... Rāma, Rāma once asked Hanumān, "What do you see? How do you see Me?'' and Hanumān answered, "When I know who I am, You and I are one, and when I forget who I am, then I serve you."

Prabhupāda: That's so nonsense.

Guest (1): Nonsense? Well, perhaps that's true. I don't know...

Guru dāsa: When you remember who you are you serve, and when you forget who you are, you think you're one with God. Just like suppose you sat in Nam Karoli's chair, just forgetting who you are, that his chela, his disciple, I'm Nam Karoli.

Guest (1): Nim Karoli.

Guru dāsa: Nim Karoli. Sorry. Similarly, when we forget who we are, we think we're one with God, but when we remember, we're His bhakta, we're His servant.

Guest (1): Yes, that's also true. It's a fact.

Guru dāsa: When Hanumān, he's a great bhakta. We should follow in his footsteps. "One who says he is My devotee, he is not My devotee. One who says he is a devotee of My devotee, he is My devotee.'' Very humble. Then we can make advancement [Cc. Madhya 13.80].

Guest (1): Mahārāja is teaching—you asked his teaching—these things are the same really, I, things that he's told me. But he said that the whole universe was God, and that you should never hurt anyone, that you should serve...

Prabhupāda: How you can serve whole universe?

Guest (1): I beg your pardon.

Prabhupāda: How you can serve whole universe?

Guest (1): How can you serve the whole universe?

Prabhupāda: Yes.

Guest (1): You love the beings that you find yourself...

Prabhupāda: You love? To whom you love?

Guest (1): Whoever you're with.

Prabhupāda: Huh?

Guest (1): Whatever, whatever...

Prabhupāda: That is... Suppose you love me. You love the whole universe? Why this false impression?

Guest (1): Well certainly every being in the universe is a part of me.

Prabhupāda: (indistinct). You can place your love to a particular person or particular community.

Guest (1): Yes.

Prabhupāda: Does it mean you love the whole universe?

Guest (1): No.

Prabhupāda: Just like, just like nationalism. You are American?

Guest (1: Yes.

Prabhupāda: So you have got your nationality. You love your country. But why you kill cows? Is that love of universe?

Guest (1): If I love America?

Prabhupāda: Yes. You love your men, but you kill your cows.

Guest (1): Acchā.

Prabhupāda: Why?

Guest (1): Through ignorance. Men...

Prabhupāda: Then how you love the whole universe, if you are in ignorance?

Guest (1): You do your best.

Prabhupāda: If you are ignorant, you do not know how to love.

Guest (1): That's true, of course. Ignorance is...

Prabhupāda: Then how do you speak of universal love? When you do not know how to love, how do you speak universe, big, big word. You do not know the art of love, and you are speaking universal love.

Guest (1): Well, certainly every...

Prabhupāda: That is ignorance. First of all you say that you do not know how to love, and you are speaking of love the universe. It has already...

Guest (1): Certainly each being in the universe is a part of the universe...

Prabhupāda: But you cannot love each being. That is my point.

Devotee: They were hinting at it. She was saying if you love a pure being...

Prabhupāda: Huh?

Guest (1): You love the universe. Like you asked if I loved the universe.

Devotee: She said that if you love a pure being, then you can love the universe. She stated that if you love a pure being then you can love the universe.

Prabhupāda: Then there is impure being and pure being?

Devotee: Yes.

Prabhupāda: Is it a fact?

Devotee: Is that true?

Prabhupāda: Then as soon as you say pure being, there is impure being.

Guest (1): It seems that way.

Guest (3): The soul isn't impure.

Prabhupāda: Huh?

Guest (3): The soul isn't impure. That's the only reality-purity of the soul.

Guest (1): You love God.

Prabhupāda: Purity of the soul, that means there are impurity of the soul.

Guest (1): It seems that way. It seems that there is...

Prabhupāda: Yes.

Guest (1): my eyes.

Prabhupāda: Then you have to distinguish which is impure and which is pure.

Guest (1): That's very difficult.

Guest (3): I don't know what your saying.

Prabhupāda: Huh?

Guest (3): That there can be an impurity of the soul?

Guest (1): He was asking...

Prabhupāda: You said. You said purity of the soul. That means there must be the contradictory: impurity of soul. Then now we have to distinguish which is impure, which is pure.

Devotee: How can we distinguish?

Guest (1): In the absolute sense the soul is always pure, there is no impurity. But when man is in ignorance, as māyā... Śrī Kṛṣṇa's yogamāyā, His power of delusion, He can...., He makes you think, He makes you see impurity. You see suffering in the world.

Prabhupāda: So wherefrom the māyā comes?

Guest (1): From... I don't know, I can't answer that. It's, it's, it's God's nature, it's His līlā.

Guru dāsa: You stated that Kṛṣṇa makes us see impurity. Is this correct Śrīla Prabhupāda?

Prabhupāda: (indistinct)

Guru dāsa: That Śrī Kṛṣṇa, Lord Kṛṣṇa makes us see impurity. He mentioned...

Guest (1): When a man is in ignorance.

Guru dāsa: Well which is first?

Guest (1): Which is first? Which, ignorance or what?

Guru dāsa: Does Kṛṣṇa make us in ignorance?

Guest (1): Well, He creates the whole universe and everything in it.

Guru dāsa: Yes. Śrīla Prabhupāda maybe you can explain that.

Prabhupāda: Hm?

Guru dāsa: Does Kṛṣṇa makes us ignorant or are we ignorant?

Prabhupāda: We are.

Guru dāsa: Yes.

Guest (1): We are.

Guru dāsa: Yes.

Prabhupāda: As he said, when you forget, you are in ignorance.

Guest (1): Yes.

Guru dāsa: Can you explain that a little bit more for us?

Prabhupāda: He has already said. This forgetfulness is ignorance.

Guest (1): Yes, forgetfulness.

Prabhupāda: He knows that.

Guest (1): The sense of egoism, I and me and mine is ignorance. It's forgetting that God is everything and that you are nothing.

Prabhupāda: That God and you are different, because you forget God, (indistinct).

Guru dāsa: (indistinct) .... and we forget, so they must be different. We're impure and He's pure, so we're different.

Guest (1): Actually that's the best attitude.

Guru dāsa: So to understand how we're different means we're in knowledge, not ignorance. And then what to do with that understanding means that not seeming. You said it seems, but we're saying not seems...

Guest (1): That's because my, I've read some other things, some other types of thoughts. Now...

Prabhupāda: Now, (indistinct), the universe is God, then you are also God. Is it?

Guest (1): Yes, that follows.

Prabhupāda: Then, how you become ignorant?

Guest (1): That's a mystery. That's something I can't explain.

Prabhupāda: Everything is mystery.

Guest (1): Is that your... Is that a mystery?

Guru dāsa: No.

Guest (1): You understand. Well, that's good.

Guru dāsa: (indistinct). Śrīla Prabhupāda. He has made us, oṁ ajñāna timirāndasya, that by the torchlight of knowledge, he has opened my eyes. There's one Sanskrit poem,

oṁ ajñāna-timirāndhasya

jñānāñjana śalākayā

cakṣur unmīlitaṁ yena

tasmai śrī gurave namaḥ

By the torchlight of knowledge he has opened my darkened eyes.

Śyāmasundara: Everything is a mystery, but if someone who knows that mystery tells you the answer then you can know, then it ceases to be a mystery. But you can't find out on your own.

Guest (1): No, you can't.

Guru dāsa: Prabhupāda was the other day saying that we're the, we have the science of love of God. Many people say, the material scientists say perhaps or about 5,000 years ago such and such happened, but we say 485 years ago Lord Caitanya came. Five thousand years ago such and such happened. There are 8,400,000 species of life, not perhaps there are 8,400,000. So, this is very scientific, this relationship.

Prabhupāda: This is very difficult for the Māyāvādī philosophers to answer, that everyone is God but when God becomes ignorant? And what kind of God He is that He forgets and becomes ignorant? In māyā. So māyā becomes better than God? Is it not? Then what is the definition of God? So many things. But they cannot answer. Just like you said that when you become ignorant (indistinct) God, how it happens? (indistinct). God, how God can be ignorant? And how can God become forgetful? It is contradictory. Then what kind of God he is, that he becomes ignorant sometimes?

Guru dāsa: And if it's Kṛṣṇa's yogamāyā that makes us forgetful and makes God forgetful, that means Kṛṣṇa's God.

Guest (1): No, no, He's the Lord of māyā. He, Kṛṣṇa's pure.

Guru dāsa: Kṛṣṇa's the Lord of everything.

Guest (1): Yes, of course. Kṛṣṇa never forgets.

Guru dāsa: Māyā's also Kṛṣṇa's servant.

Guest (1): Yes, of course.

Prabhupāda: Now (indistinct) That's right. If Kṛṣṇa does not forget, then Kṛṣṇa is God, isn't it?

Guest (1): Yes.

Prabhupāda: Then why not take Kṛṣṇa līlā study? Why go to others?

Guest (1): Well, I have. I try to the best of my ability, I've read the Gītā, the Bhāgavata.

Prabhupāda: What Kṛṣṇa says, what Kṛṣṇa says, if Kṛṣṇa is God and Kṛṣṇa is never forgetful, then why not go to Kṛṣṇa?

Guru dāsa: He says he's read the Gītā and the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. So what has come?

Prabhupāda: Reading is not, I mean to say...

Guest (1): Of course not, reading is very (indistinct).

Prabhupāda: understand Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa says mattaḥ parataraṁ nānyat kiñcid asti dhanañjaya [Bg. 7.7], there is no more greater truth than Me. Bhoktāraṁ yajña-tapasāṁ sarva-loka-maheśvaram [Bg. 5.29], I am the Lord of all the planetary systems, sarva-loka. So why should you go to others if you think that Kṛṣṇa is God, there is no greater personality than Kṛṣṇa? Take the instruction from Kṛṣṇa. It is very easy.

Guest (1): Where is Kṛṣṇa?

Prabhupāda: Huh? To take instruction from Kṛṣṇa.

Guest (1): Of course. As much as He allows me.

Prabhupāda: So, He allows everything. What is the difficulty? Kṛṣṇa says, sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja [Bg. 18.66], you give up everything just surrender unto Me. So if you surrender (indistinct), but if you don't that is your business.

Guest (1): How does one surrender?

Prabhupāda: That is another thing. You do not know then, you have to learn who I will surrender, but the position is this, Kṛṣṇa says that you surrender unto Me. You can surrender immediately. Surrender means just like in war field there is surrender: "(indistinct) now. Now sir, you surrender. Now whatever you like you can do." That is surrender. "If you like, kill me, and if you like, keep(?) me. That is surrender. It is very simple thing. In the war field when other party is defeated, the holds the hand, surrender. That means "If you like kill me, I throw down my weapon. If you like, save me." So He is the Supreme. If He likes He can kill me, if He likes He can save me, so I am subordinate. How can, I can do equally Kṛṣṇa? As soon as you surrender, it is accepted that you are predominated and He is predominator. So how you, the predominated, can be equal to the predominator?

Devotee: Can't be.

Guest (1): He is the Lord (indistinct).

Prabhupāda: That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness.

Śyāmasundara: The thing you said when you came in was that we merge with something which is formless beyond Kṛṣṇa, the first...

Guest (1): No, it's not beyond Kṛṣṇa.

Prabhupāda: If he has read Bhagavad-gītā, that he cannot say, because Kṛṣṇa says brahmaṇo ahaṁ pratiṣṭhā, I am the resort of Brahman. So He is greater than Brahman. Mattaḥ sarvaṁ pravartate, even Brahman emanates from Me, and actually it is so. Just like the sunshine (indistinct) sun globe. Although the sunshine is universe(?), but still dependent on the sun globe.

Guest (1): Of course that's true. There's nothing beyond Kṛṣṇa, of course.

Prabhupāda: That's good(?).

Devotee: Very nice (indistinct).

Guest (1): (indistinct)

Prabhupāda: Very good. He's(?) good boy.

Śyāmasundara: Śrīla Prabhupāda, I have a question.

Prabhupāda: Hm?

Śyāmasundara: If unity means to agree in purpose.

Prabhupāda: Yes.

Śyāmasundara: Then what is that purpose? What is Kṛṣṇa's purpose?

Prabhupāda: Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa is living force. He has got different purpose.

Śyāmasundara: Oh.

Prabhupāda: Don't say that Kṛṣṇa has only one purpose, that only purpose is that you surrender. Now, when you surrender, whatever Kṛṣṇa says you do it.

Śyāmasundara: Oh. So His purpose is individual for everyone.

Prabhupāda: Yes. Varieties of purposes. Kṛṣṇa is asking Arjuna to fight with the Kurus, or He's asking me to preach. I am not fighting. So Kṛṣṇa, (indistinct), He has got varieties of order, and your duty is to carry out the order of Kṛṣṇa, that's all. What kind of order He'll give, you accept, just like you are doing, all my disciples. It is not that you are all doing the same thing. Somebody is pūjārī, somebody is preaching, somebody is collector, somebody is (indistinct), somebody is this, somebody is that. So there are different varieties, but your duty is to carry out my order.

Guru dāsa: Just like you're satisfying us all, Kṛṣṇa satisfies everyone, (indistinct).

Prabhupāda: Surrender means, whatever is favorable for Kṛṣṇa we apply, that's all. You cannot say, just like Arjuna, he first of all declined, "Kṛṣṇa, I am not going to fight.'' That is not surrender.

Guest (1): "I'll do whatever you want, but don't ask me to fight."

Prabhupāda: You cannot deny Him. That is surrender. Then, when he understood Bhagavad-gītā he said "Yes, I shall do that.'' So long I deny Kṛṣṇa that is disunity, and as soon as I agree, "Kṛṣṇa, yes.'' Then this unity. Unity does not mean that Kṛṣṇa and Arjuna become united, homogeneous. No. Kṛṣṇa is distinct and Arjuna. They continue to exist. In the beginning Arjuna was denying to fight. That is dependence(?), and at the end when he said, "Yes, kariṣye vacanaṁ tava [Bg. 18.73], my illusion is now over. That is (indistinct). Unity does not mean one's self loses individuality. That is cannot, that cannot be. Kṛṣṇa says that "both you and me and all these soldiers and Kings they existed before, now we are existing and we shall exist in future(?). So, that individuality is always kept. So unity means agreeing with the order of Kṛṣṇa, and disunity means not agreeing with the order. Otherwise your existence(?), mine and Kṛṣṇa's existence, always will be.

Śyāmasundara: Sometimes people ask what is, what is God's ultimate goal? What is, why is God creating everything and are all these manifestations...

Prabhupāda: These are very old questions. These are not very intelligent questions. God is not creating. God is giving you chance. The conditioned souls who are not with Kṛṣṇa, they wanted to enjoy this material world. Therefore God is giving them chance. "All right enjoy (indistinct),'' and giving instruction also that you enjoy in this way, so that you may come back again. Just like a father. Children wants to play in the (indistinct). "All right, you play.'' Then, as soon as he asks, "Please come back. (indistinct), they come back. Similarly this material world, we wanted to enjoy, so Kṛṣṇa has given us freedom, "All right enjoy". And now Kṛṣṇa gives instruction that "now you give up all this (indistinct) come back, then you (indistinct).'' He created for you. Same example I always give. Just like the government, when there is formation of the city, jail construction is also there. You cannot say that, "Why government is creating, it is unnecessary, it's premature, construction of jail work(?). But the government knows that there are some criminals who has to be put into the jail. Therefore the jail created. So because there are criminals, therefore government creates. Similarly, there are many conditioned souls who, instead of serving Kṛṣṇa, they want to enjoy. "All right, for you, you enjoy to your fullest extent.'' And when he is tired of enjoying, enjoying, enjoying. Then Kṛṣṇa says that, "If you give up all this nonsense, just surrender to Me, you will be accepted.'' But the demons will never surrender to Kṛṣṇa. They say that this material world is false and Brahman is truth, but they do not know how to act as Brahman. Brahman means to stop. That is nirviśeṣavāda and śūnyavāda, to become void. But you cannot become void. If I say "Mr. such and such, you sit down here, try to become void,'' how long you shall do that, void?

Guest (1): No, that's impossible.

Prabhupāda: That's impossible. So this is a wrong theory. Because I am a living entity, I have got my activities. I can remain void for few seconds, for few minutes.


 Room Conversation -- February 13, 1974, Vṛndāvana

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