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Oct

2013

Offering food to Krsna

by purujit dasa


Regarding your question about why we do not eat meat and yet we eat plant life, the answer is that we do everything as Krishna recommends. Everything we eat is first offered to Lord Krishna, and because Krishna does not eat meat, therefore we also do not eat meat. The fruits, grains, and vegetables which we offer to the Lord are not caused any suffering by our offering them to Krishna. Rather they are greatly benefited because to be offered for the pleasure of the Lord will grant for the living entity within the plant body certain liberation in the near future. Everything that we do in Krishna Consciousness is ultimately beneficial to all living creatures because we are working under the recommendations of the Lord Himself who is the well-wisher of all His part and parcel children.

Srila Prabhupada's letter to Ann Clifford -- Los Angeles 2 August, 1969

Lord Krsna says in the Bhagavadgita:

yajna-sistasinah santo
mucyante sarva-kilbisaih
bhunjate te tv agham papa
ye pacanty atma-karanat

The devotees of the Lord are released from all kinds of sins because they eat food which is offered first for sacrifice. Others, who prepare food for personal sense enjoyment, verily eat only sin.

Bg.3.13

Jivo jivasya jivanam- in this material world one living entity is a food for another living entity. As humans we also have to kill another living entity in order to survivebe it an animal for those, who are meat eaters, or a plant for those who are vegetarians. Even unknowingly we daily kill so many bacterias, insects etc, so in reality this material world is a true slaughterhouse even though the illusory energy makes us think that everything is ok. We are bound to kill and consequently suffer the results of our activities and this is called samsara -or the cycle of birth and death. Therefore here, in this verse, Lord Krsna is instructing the civilized class of human beings on how to take eatables without the unnecessary implications in sinful reaction. The food, which we take should first be offered for sacrifice and this article will explain how you can make such sacrifice as instructed by our spiritual master Srila Prabhupada in your home.


The secret is to offer food to Krsna. Because Krsna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, He's not under the material law, nor is He suspectible to sinful reaction. He's the Supreme lawmaker. And just as king or a president is above law, Krsna, or God is above all law. So if we offer it to Him, no sinful reaction is incurred and because Krsna is the most merciful, He leaves His karma- free remnants for us to take. This however is only possible if we make our offerings through the medium of a bona fide spiritual master. He in turn offers it to his spiritual master. His spiritual master offers it to his spiritual master and in this way, the offering is passed through the whole disciplic succesion until it reaches the lotus feet of Lord Krsna. Because the spiritual master has a direct relationship with the Supreme Lord, He can give us proper guidence on how to prepare the foods and only when we offer our foodstuffs through the medium of a spiritual master will Krsna accept it because the spiritual master is Lord Krsna's authorized representative.

Regarding offering food: The custom is to offer the foodstuff first to the Spiritual Master; we cannot do anything directly. The Spiritual Master accepts the offering on behalf of his disciple, and offers the same to Krishna. After Krishna's eating, the Spiritual Master eats it, and then the devotees take it as Mahaprasada. This is the system. Everything is offered to the Spiritual Master first, with the prayer ``Nama Om Visnupadaya . . .''

Srila Prabhupada's letter to Jadurani -- Los Angeles 15 February


How can Krsna eat our food? The answer is Krsna is omnipotent. What it means is that Krsna can eat with His eyes, walk with His ears, smell with His hands etc. Krsna's senses are absolute. In this way He's taking our offerings simply by glancing at them through His picture and leaves them still on the plate. We can thus enjoy Krsna's prasadam. If we take the remnanats of foodstuffs of a patient suffering from tuberculosis, we will contaminate that disease. Similalry if we take Krsna prasadam, we will "contaminate" ourselves by becoming spiritualized. Simply by taking prasadam, we will become immune towards the contamination of the material nature. Srila Prabhupada specifies in his commentary on the Bhagavadgita that accepting prasadam enable one to: 1. advance steadily in life, 2. purify the body, 3.and create fine brain tissues which will lead to clear thinking. If we love Krsna and if we can simultaneously derive such a great benefit from simply taking delicious foodstuffs offered to Krsna, why not make sure that the process is applied properly according to rules and regulations?



What Krsna likes:

patram puspam phalam toyam
yo me bhaktya prayacchati
tad aham bhakty-upahrtam
asnami prayatatmanah

If one offers Me with love and devotion a leaf, a flower, fruit or water, I will accept it.

Bg. 9.26

The first principle is love. Krsna does not need our offerings, He's the proprietor of the whole universe and He's served by thousands of Goddesses of fortune with the most exquisite preparations in the spiritual world. What can we do compared to Them? We can give Krsna our love only. And Krsna will accept it. It is just like a child offering father a sweet. The father is the owner of the sweet, yet when the child offers, he's very happy and he takes the sweet from a child and eats it with great pleasure. Similarly, if we offer Krsna even an insignificant humble offering, but we do it out of love, Krsna enjoys it very much. Here, in this verse Krsna asks for a specific group of eatables and if we love Him, then we must give Him whatever He wants and not whatever we want. This is a very important point.

Leaf, flower, fruit, water -these four groups of eatables represent: vegetables, grains, milk, fruits, nuts, beans etc. Although Krsna can eat anything and everything, He, as individual person, reserves a right to be a vegetarian. We therefore prepare foodstuff for Krsna out of these. It is also important to put a tulsi leaf on each preparation.

There are innumerable recipes available. The most common meals, which the devotees of Krsna offer are: subji(vegetable stew), lentils, rice, chapati, paratha, puri, chutney, sweet rice, halava, kheer, kachori, kitri, samosa, gulab jamuns, rasagulla.



 

What Krsna does not like:

Concerning the use of sour cream in the temple, it should be stopped immediately. Nothing should be offered to the Deities which is purchased in the stores. Things produced by the karmis should not be offered to Radha-Krishna. Ice cream, if you can prepare, is o.k., but not otherwise. Now, you have such a big stock of this sour cream, so sell the stock at any cost. Who is the rascal who has purchased without permission?

Srila Prabhupada's letter to Puru -- Vrindaban 6 April, 1976

So far as offering to Krishna apple cider, this can be done only if it is prepared by devotees. These food manufacturers do not take proper precautions in cleanliness nor do they have devotion to Krishna in their labors so it is not very acceptable offering. If you can make this preparation yourself then it will be alright.

Srila Prabhupada's letter to Rukmini -- Los Angeles 19 December

Krsna will never accept a food, which is cooked by a nondevotee, because a nondevotee has no love for Krsna. Therefore preparations made by nondevotees such as cheese, sour cream, bread, or any cooked/precooked food purchased in a supermarket or given to you by a nondevotee, cannot be offered. We can accept raw ingredients like rice, flour, fruits, but otherwise we make everything ourselves.

These ingredients are not suitable for offerings(as we can understand from Srila Prabhupada's letters):

meat, fish, eggs, garlic, onion

So far foodstuffs offered do the needful. Whatever is available and also very nice, that is offerable, as long as no meat, fish, eggs, garlic, onions, or other very objectionable foodstuffs are there.

Srila Prabhupada's letter to Upendra -- Calcutta 19 February, 1972

chocolate

Cocoa and chocolate are not to be taken as they are intoxicants.

Srila Prabhupada's letter to Surasrestha, -- Los Angeles 14 June, 1972



yeast

Regarding your other questions, yes, you may wear any clothing that you find comfortable; no, it is not very good to use yeast in preparing prasadam. It is better to prepare bread in the process as you have seen done in the temple.

Srila Prabhupada's letter to Vibhavati -- Los Angeles 15 July, 1969

mushrooms

Because mushrooms grow in a filthy place, they are not usually offered to Krishna.

Srila Prabhupada's letter to Himavati -- Delhi 17 November, 1971

vinegar

So far the cucumber pickles: As far as possible we should not offer to the Deity things which are prepared by nondevotees. We can accept from them raw fruits, grains or similar raw things. So far cooking and preparing, that should be strictly limited to the initiated devotees. And aside from this, vinegar is not good; it is tamasic, in the darkness, nasty food. So I think we shall not accept this pickles.

Srila Prabhupada's letter to Kirtanananda -- Hawaii 24 March, 1969

canned foods

Step by step guide:

Altar


For offerings we will need to set up an altar. For a starter a picture of Panca Tattva and Srila Prabhupada on a clean shelf will suffice.

1.After cooking, we may put samples of all the different preparations into separate cups. If you make chapati, puri, parathas etc simply rest them on the plate. Do not forget to offer a cup of water.

2.Then we rest the plate on the altar. While ringing a bell, we may recite the following mantras


nama om visnu-padaya krsna-presthaya bhu-tale
srimate bhaktivedanta-svamin iti namine
namas te sarasvate deve gaura-vani-pracarine
nirvisesa-sunyavadi-pascatya-desatarine


"I offer my respectful obeisances unto His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, who is very dear to Lord Krishna, having taken shelter at His lotus feet." "Our respectful obeisances are unto you, O spiritual master, servant of Sarasvati Gosvami. You are kindly preaching the message of Lord Caitanyadeva and delivering the Western countries, which are filled with voidism and impersonalism."

namo maha-vadanyaya krsna-prema-pradaya te
krsnaya krsna-caitanya-namne gaura-tvise namah:


"O most munificent incarnation! You are Krishna Himself appearing as Sri Krishna Caitanya Mahaprabhu. You have assumed the golden color of Srimati Radharani, and You are widely distributing pure love of Krishna. We offer our respectful obeisances unto You."

(Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya-lila19.53)


namo brahmanya-devaya go-brahmana-hitaya ca
jagad-dhitaya krsnaya govindaya namo namah:


"I offer my respectful obeisances to the Supreme Absolute Truth, Krishna, who is the well-wisher of the cows and the brahmanas as well as the living entities in general. I offer my repeated obeisances to Govinda, who is the pleasure reservoir for all the senses."

(Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya-lila 13.77, citing Visnu Purana 1.19.65)


You may recite each of the above mentioned mantras three times in a row one after the other (3 x Nama om,3 x Namo maha,3 x Namo brahmanya) and finish with the Hare Krsna mahamantra 3 times as well.

Yes, you may say the prayer to the Spiritual Master 3 times, and also the Namo Brahmanya . . . prayer 3 times, when offering Prasadam. That is very nice to say the mantra 3 times. Also, you may, after offering to the Spiritual Master, offer to Lord Caitanya by saying the prayer, Namo Maha Badanyaya . . . 3 times, and then offer to Krishna thrice.


Srila Prabhupada's letter to Balai -- San Francisco 22 March, 1968

As Krsna is completely independent, He's not obliged to accept our service, and we should therefore pray that Lord will take take our offerings. When the offering is made, let the Lord enjoy His meal in privacy. You can remove the offering after 15-30 minutes.



Regarding your questions: Yes, leave Krishna's plate for 15-20 minutes or more, not more than half an hour.

Srila Prabhupada's letter to Balai -- Los Angeles 25 January, 1968


In a meanwhile you may chant Hare Krsna on your beads. When you are about to remove the offering, clap your hands three times and ring the bell. This is a signal for the Lord so He knows that you are about to remove His plate. While ringing the bell we chant the Nama om Vishnupadaya mantra and after that we remove the plate from the altar. Now the food is prasadam and we can fully enjoy it and share with others. Before we do that, we should wash Krishna's plates and cups and wash the altar.


All the offering paraphernelia should be kept nicely in a clean place.

Plates & cups

If we already have a Krsna conscious altar, we should get nice offering plates & cups. The plates& cups will be used

only for Krsna to eat from. Ideal is stainless steel plates& cups, but those from Dollarama will do. They should be alwayskept clean and in a clean place. Important rule: The plates & cups need to be washed immediately after the offering is removed.
Arranging
Besides the offerings themselves it is also important how nicely we arrange them on the plate. Think of Krsna taking what you have prepared. Give Him the best pieces and sufficient quantities. No spilled water, or other liquids. If it happens though, the remedy is to have a...
Cloth
A handy cloth is essential. This cloth we will use strictly for Krsna's plates and cups. There should be two pieces of cloth-one for washing and one for drying. As mentioned before, the cloth comes handy if you spill something on a plate while you arranging the different preparations too. Besides the offerings themselves it is also important how nicely we arrange them on the plate. No spilled water, or other liquids.
Tulsi leaves
If by any chance you happen to be a Tulsi plant cultivator, then do not hesitate to put tulsi leaves on each preparation in each offering. Krsna loves it! If you do not happen to be a tulsi cultivator, you can keep dry tulsi leaves.
Offering water
The water is offered each and every time along with a meal. The only exception is when we offer milk/dalia/kheer -in that case water is not required
Bell
The bell is very much needed. How will Krsna know that you want to offer Him some nice foodstuffs unless you ring a bell? Any small bell will do.

Cooking
Cooking is an elaborate topic by itself, but shortly you may note down a few essentials.We should always keep in mind that Krsna is not any ordinary man, He's the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the master of all universes. He's witnessing every single detail and even pays attention to the state of our mind while we cook. The kitchen should be kept very clean. your hands should be kept clean too by washing them throughout the process. If you take a shower before you enter the kitchen you will feel refreshed and it will affect your cooking nicely. One should not pass urine/stool after he/she starts cooking. This should be done before or after. Nor should one eat, or drink while the cooking is going on.We should understand that we are cooking for Krsna, not for ourselves, therefore at any time we should try to enjoy the foodstuff, which is being prepared in the mind. It should not be tasted, nor smelled(unless you are suspicious of burning something). There should also be no talking while cooking. In conclusion, any sense gratification should be avoided. The more we try to meditate on our pleasure, the less we will meditate on the Lord's pleasure. Playing Srila Prabhupada's bhajans or listening to his lectures is not a rule, but we find it quite helpful in fixing the mind on Krishna while cooking. Nondevotee should not be permitted to enter to kitchen as they will lust over the food and Krsna will not accept it.
Prasadam and Mahaprasadam
As soon as Krsna takes your offering, the samples, which you have offered on the altar become mahaprasadam. This mahaprasadam should be treated extra carefully. When you add the mahaprasadam back to the pot, where you prepared the preparation in the whole pot becomes mahaprasadam. If you do not, the pot is still prasadam though.

Treating prasadam

To throw prasadam away is a great great offense.


Prasadam is non-different from Krsna Himself, that's why it is very important to treat prasadam with respect. This is not an ordinary food. By taking this food living entities become free from all miseries. So, we should completely avoid throwing prasadam out. Everything should be eaten or distributed to the last grain of rice. If, however, there is a situation where prasadam needs to be thrown away(your nondevotee friends do not finish the meal, or if the meal is burned) you can give it to animals, throw it in a river or lake, or put on a branch of a tree, or dig a hole and put it in soil.

Before takiing prasadam you might recite this prayer:

Prasada-sevaya
(Sung before honoring the Lord's prasada--from Gitavali)

Sharira abidya-jal,
jodendriya tahe kal,
jiva phele vishaya-sagore
ta'ra madhye jihwa ati,
lobhamoy sudurmati,
ta'ke jeta kathina samsare
krishna baro doyamoy,
koribare jihwa jay,
swa-prasad-anna dilo bhai
sei annamrita pao, radha-krishna-guna gao,
preme dako chaitanya-nitai

1. This material body is a network of ignorance, and the senses are one's deadly enemies, for they throw the soul into this ocean of material sense enjoyment. Among those senses the tongue is the most voracious and uncontrollable; it is very difficult to conquer the tongue in this world.

2. Lord Krishna is very merciful and has given us the remnants of His own food just to control the tongue. Now please accept that nectarean Krishna-prasada and sing the glories of Their Lordships Sri Sri Radha and Krishna, and in love call out "Chaitanya Nitai!"

Glorification of the Lord's Prasada
(from the Mahabharata)

maha-prasade govinde
nama-brahmani-vaishnava
svalpa-punya-vatam rajan
vishvaso naiva jayate

"O King, for those who have amassed very few pious activities, their faith in maha-prasada, in Sri Govinda, in the Holy Name and in the Vaishnava is never born [again]."

More quotes from Srila Prabhupada

Regarding your questions: Yes, leave Krishna's plate for 15-20 minutes or more, not more than half an hour. After offering the plate, the balance in the pots should be distributed immediately. The plate can remain on the altar while the rest is being distributed.

Letter to: Balai -- Los Angeles 25 January, 1968

If, in the cooking process, food falls on the floor, if it is raw and can be washed nicely, then it can be offered. But if it is prepared and cannot be washed, then it is not to be offered, but can be eaten rather than be wasted. Brijbasi Co. are not ordinary businessmen, they are devotees. So their pictures aren't poisonous. Even it is poison, because we are paying for their goods, therefore if poison is there, it becomes ineffective. Just like we are buying so many things at the market which are not fit for offering to Krishna, but because we are purchasing them, we can offer.

Letter to: Jadurani -- Los Angeles 15 February,

The main thing is that whenever prasadam is offered to the Lord, everything should be very respectfully and cleanly presented and prepared. In Jagannatha Puri, the Lord eats 56 times. So the Lord can eat as many times as you can offer. But only thing is whatever is offered must be with respect and devotion. (He is neither hungry nor poor, nor unable to eat, but He accepts everything, when such eatable is within the groups of vegetables, fruits, flours, milk, water, etc. is offered to Him with love and devotion, and faith. He wants our love only, and that makes Him hungry for eating as many times as you may offer. He is absolute, therefore, all contradictory points coincide in Him. He is hungry and satisfied simultaneously. So the purport is that everything should be offered very cleanly and pure things should be given.) If a preparation is cooked all together, then offer all together. But if it is prepared separately, then the milk, the sugar and the cereal should be offered separately. But if the milk, sugar and grains are all cooked together, that can be done. (Everything should be prepared very carefully and cleanly within the groups of foods listed. And nothing should ever be eaten before offering to the Lord. Best thing is to prepare separately each preparation. No, food which has been offered should never be put back into the refrigerator with the unoffered foods, or brought back into the kitchen. You should prepare as much as can be consumed, and after offering, nothing should be put back in the refrigerator, or kitchen. Refrigerator should always be very cleansed and pure. Everyone should be careful to make only as much as they can eat; they cannot keep any leftovers in refrigerator. I know this is a practice in your country, but in the temples or at homes of any Krishna Consciousness persons, a person should not indulge in such unclean habits. If there is any food extra, that should be kept separately; and if there is a separate refrigerator, not within the kitchen and not having in it any unoffered foods, then you may have such special refrigerator for leftover prasadam. But it cannot be kept within the same refrigerator as the unoffered, unprepared foods. That cannot be. One should never eat within the kitchen, there is ample place to eat so why should one eat in the kitchen? Kitchen should be considered as good as the Lord's room, and nobody should wear shoes in the kitchen, smelling and tasting of foods being prepared for the Lord should never be done, talking within the kitchen should be only what is necessary for preparing the prasadam, or about the Lord, and dirty dishes (those taken from kitchen and eaten from) should not be brought back into the kitchen (but if there is no other place to wash them, then they should be put into sink and washed immediately.), hands should always be washed when preparing prasadam, and in this way, everything shall be prepared very cleanly and pure.) What is the difficulty of enforcing these rules? They are rules, and they are simple rules, and must be followed. One must be prepared to follow the rules for Krishna. Otherwise where is the proof that he loves Krishna. And they are not very difficult to follow.

Letter to: Aniruddha -- Montreal 16 June, 1968

Regarding prasadam offering to the Deities, you will take from the cooked foodstuffs in a plate just sufficient for one man's eating, and this prasadam should be offered to the Deity, not the whole quantity. The rest of the foodstuffs may remain in the oven to keep it hot until the devotees accept and honor it. The plate offered to the Deities must be kept 15-20 minutes so that the major portion of the foodstuffs will be remaining warm in the oven, and the devotees will therefore not be dissatisfied. I think this practice will solve the question.

Letter to: Kirtanananda -- Los Angeles 14 February, 1969

Regarding your question about offering Prasadam, whatever is offered to the Deity actually it goes through the Spiritual Master. The Spiritual Master offers to Lord Caitanya, and Lord Caitanya offers it to Krishna. Then Radha Krishna eats, or Jagannatha eats, then Caitanya Mahaprabhu eats, then the Spiritual Master eats, and it becomes Mahaprasadam. So when you offer something, you think like that and chant the Gayatri mantra, and then everything is complete. At last, ring the bell, take out the plate and wipe the place where the plate was kept.

Letter to: Arundhati -- New Vrindaban 16 June, 1969

We can accept raw materials and take them to our temple but we should not accept any prasadam prepared by them. However, if they insist then we can take fruits and milk and offer them to Krishna. Cocoa and chocolate are not to be taken as they are intoxicants.

Letter to: Surasrestha, -- Los Angeles 14 June, 1972

 

 

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Fri

30

Aug

2013

Receving Milos Translation for Isopanishad

A letter from Bhakta Milos from Slovakia :

 

Hare Krishna dear Purujit prabhu maharaja!

 

Please kindly accept my fallen obeisance’s at your lotus feet!

All glories to our dear most swanlike Spiritual Master Om Vishnupada Paramahamsa Pari vrajakacharya 108 Srimad A.C Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada Maharaja – the saviour of the whole world!

My dear prabhu ,with great joy and delight I’m sending you this volume of the first original Prabhupada’s book in Slovak language.  That was also the first book you gave me at my modest home in Slavoska in 2009, when there were still onions on my table and ganja loaded in my chillum...

So you came from a distance place just for a few moments to bless this useless soul with kirtan and prasadam and now you hold in your hand the transcendental fruit of that seemingly insignificant journey. With great help Bjorn prabhu, we have printed  this symbolic small run. Its a little transcendental hoax, cuz it says there, there are only  3 volumes, but actually, there are six. Nevertheless, because I’m a lazy useless fool, we didn’t manage to print some substantial amount of variety of books, but this one print is just to show Srila Prabhupada on the most auspicious day of his Divine appearance, that things are going on although slowly and slightly due to my great incompetence as it was a little rush also, i already find some details to be repaired and rectified in the book, and ill shall see to that, that the official printing will be pakka.

Beside that here everything goes on in its way, my every day struggle is to gain that courage and faith to jump and dive and deep into the ocean of surrender, which is a little hard for me. On the other hand , I strongly feel in my heart, that the time is definitely here and that there is no other way for me to act then to leave my present condition, in which i have done what was needed and begin a new chapter of my life. With your blessing i believe i shall be able to take that step. I’m going to Istanbul for the Janmastami and Vyasa Puja to join Balarama Prabhu there and offer this little book, which is so far my greatest success in life to the lotus feet of Srilla Prabhupada. If you like, and i think it would be very nice, you can also offer it in Montreal because it is also, and mainly your credit, that it exists. You came to give me Prabhupada, you engaged me in that service of translating, you have cultivated me, you eradicated many of my misconceptions and doubts, you have cultivated Bjorn Prabhu, so all the glory comes to you directly or indirectly. I hope this will find you in a happy mood, healthy and all ecstatic in the transcendental loving service of Lord Sri Krisna and his pure devote Srila Prabhupada and I beg to remain eternally your insignificant servant

Milos.

Jaya Srila Prabhupada ! Hare Krishna!

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Thu

06

Jun

2013

The Proof Of You Part 27

The scientists however accept the existence of matter. Therefore it should not be a problem to accept that the nature of matter is that it deteriorates. Whatever we see around us will be finished at one point: our house, our clothes, the trees growing outside, etc. The body is made of matter and therefore it cannot work forever either. 

 

Just like in your childhood you had a small body. That is no longer existing. That means you have changed your body. Similarly, you'll have to change this body. When this body will not work anymore... Because it is material. Every material things deteriorate and it becomes useless at certain length of time. Any machine, any clock... Therefore it has been taken as dress: vāsāṁsi jīrṇāni yathā vihāya [Bg. 2.22].

 

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 6.1.8

 

However, according to the Vedas, the living entity is eternal. Although our childhood body is gone, we have not died. Therefore the logical conclusion is that our consciousness must continue even after death.  How, where, in what type of body that we cannot perceive through our imperfect senses directly. That is impossible.  What is possible though is to understand its existence by the process of hearing from the perfect source.

 

Anything which is beyond the scope of experience by our imperfect senses can be realized fully by the sound representation. A person transmitting sound from a far distant place can be factually experienced. If this is materially possible, why not spiritually?

 

SB 1972 1.5.38 purport

 

If we talk to a friend on a walky-talky, we cannot see him, nor can we hear him. What we hear from the walky-talky is actually not his voice directly, but it is a sound representation of his voice, which is produced by the speaker of the walky-talky. It is not true that by hearing the sound representation, we are bereft of experiencing what he says. In fact, in terms of receiving the information, which is being transmitted, there’s no difference between hearing his voice and hearing the sound representation of his voice. It is not difficult to conclude then that if a person who we are hearing from has a factual experience of a phenomenon and if he describes it to us as it is, our experience is direct. In fact, it can be more direct than actually experiencing the phenomenon by our eyes. Coming back to the example of the sun which to our eyes appears as a yellow disc, if we hear from an astronaut on a walky-talky who is actually seeing the sun planet right now from all angles in his spaceship, we are experiencing the sun more perfectly through hearing than through seeing the sun directly with our eyes.

 

Similarly, we can still have the proof of the soul’s existence in the next body not through seeing it in front of us, but through hearing from the Vedic scripture (a recorded sound). How do we know that the Vedas are correct? Same process –through hearing (studying them). Just like the modern man takes the word of a scientist for granted on so many things without unnecessarily going through the research himself, throughout the history, all classes of transcendentalists are accepting the authority of the Vedic literature. The authority might be different in the two cases, but the process is the same. We get to know about things which are beyond our perception by hearing from someone who has that perception. Either we believe the Vedas or the scientists, because we’re in ignorance we have to believe someone in order to learn new things. The difference is that in the case of modern science the conclusions change, whereas the Vedic conclusion, which is not tinged by material influence of mistake, illusion, imperfect senses and tendency to cheat remains. Vedic statements are a fact in the past, present and future and many of them have been actually confirmed by modern science as well whereas the so-called scientific facts such as man came from a monkey or life comes from matter were conceived at one point and will similarly vanish at one point because they’re manufactured in the factory of an imperfect scientist’s mind.  

 

 

Karandhara. The basis of what they call "scientific integrity" is that they talk only about what they can directly experience.

Śrīla Prabhupāda. You may talk about your experience, and I may talk about my experience. But why should I accept your experience? You may be a fool, so why should I also become a fool? You may be a frog, but suppose I am a whale. Why should I take your well as all in all? You have your method of acquiring scientific knowledge, and I have mine.

 

Life Comes From Life:  Life on Other Planets

 

 

The modern man has a tendency to reject dogmatic thinking and form his own conclusions based on various sources of information. Why not therefore give receptive hearing to a tradition, which has been here for thousands of years and still remains scientifically accurate? Make an experiment. What is the objection? As the Vedic scriptures are the only source of knowledge known to man, which actually explain the nature of the soul in such a detail, we actually have no other choice than at least study what they say.

 

As far as the soul's existence is concerned, no one can establish his existence experimentally beyond the proof of śruti or Vedic wisdom. We have to accept this truth, because there is no other source of understanding the existence of the soul, although it is a fact by perception. There are many things we have to accept solely on grounds of superior authority. No one can deny the existence of his father, based upon the authority of his mother. There is no other source of understanding the identity of the father except by the authority of the mother. Similarly, there is no other source of understanding the soul except by studying the Vedas.

 

Bg 2.25

 

 

One might ask however, at this point, what distinguishes such process of hearing of the Vedic literature from blind faith. Although the Vedas might give a very logical and minute description of the soul’s existence after the body’s demise, we’re still in doubts –it might be true, it might not be true. Because we cannot perceive the soul’s presence, are we doomed to be in such doubt forever?

This is of course an intelligent question. We should mention however, that besides the information about the soul’s nature, the Vedas also give a process by which one can actually have a direct experience of the soul’s eternality. If one follows the process, he can have a direct experience of what he has learned from the Vedic scriptures before. So it is not a blind faith. It can be verified. There’s a hypothesis and there’s an experiment. Simply we have to be willing to undertake it in the following way. 

In the conditioned state, our pure perception of the self is covered. Daily we identify with the senses, with the mind, with the intelligence and with our false ego and thus identified we look for happiness. Although the soul is eternal and thus cannot be satisfied by temporary pleasures, we are again and again trying to enjoy materially and hope that one day we will succeed. This is actually the blind faith. We have subjected our perception to be controlled by such a lust and it is for this reason we have difficulty to perceive our eternality, although it is a fact by perception.

The aim of yoga is to come out of such blind faith and become free from the different coverings on the soul and act with the pure self in relation to the source of all pleasure, Supreme Absolute Whole –Krsna. 

 

Prabhupāda:  Actually soul is above intelligence. Above intelligence. Our gross senses, that is our present perception, direct. And beyond these gross senses, there is the mind. And beyond the mind, there is intelligence. And beyond intelligence, there is soul. So come to that platform requires that meditation process to make the sense activities calm and quiet, mind settle, and then come to the intelligence platform, then come to the spiritual platform.

 

 

Room Conversation with Dr. John Mize -- June 23, 1975, Los Angeles

 

indriyāṇi parāṇy āhur

indriyebhyaḥ paraṁmanaḥ

manasas tu parā buddhir

yo buddheḥ paratas tu saḥ

 

The working senses are superior to dull matter; mind is higher than the senses; intelligence is still higher than the mind; and he [the soul] is even higher than the intelligence.

 

The senses are different outlets for the activities of lust. Lust is reserved within the body, but it is given vent through the senses. Therefore, the senses are superior to the body as a whole. These outlets are not in use when there is superior consciousness, or Kṛṣṇa consciousness. In Kṛṣṇa consciousness the soul makes direct connection with the Supreme Personality of Godhead; therefore the bodily functions, as described here, ultimately end in the Supreme Soul. Bodily action means the functions of the senses, and stopping the senses means stopping all bodily actions. But since the mind is active, then, even though the body may be silent and at rest, the mind will act—as it does during dreaming. But, above the mind there is the determination of the intelligence, and above the intelligence is the soul proper. If, therefore, the soul is directly engaged with the Supreme, naturally all other subordinates, namely, the intelligence, mind and the senses, will be automatically engaged. In the Kaṭha Upaniṣad there is a passage in which it is said that the objects of sense gratification are superior to the senses, and mind is superior to the sense objects. If, therefore, the mind is directly engaged in the service of the Lord constantly, then there is no chance of the senses becoming engaged in other ways. This mental attitude has already been explained. If the mind is engaged in the transcendental service of the Lord, there is no chance of its being engaged in the lower propensities. In the Kaṭha Upaniṣad the soul has been described as mahān, the great. Therefore the soul is above all-namely, the sense objects, the senses, the mind and the intelligence. Therefore, directly understanding the constitutional position of the soul is the solution of the whole problem.

With intelligence one has to seek out the constitutional position of the soul and then engage the mind always in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That solves the whole problem. A neophyte spiritualist is generally advised to keep aloof from the objects of senses. One has to strengthen the mind by use of intelligence. If by intelligence one engages one's mind in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, by complete surrender unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead, then, automatically, the mind becomes stronger, and even though the senses are very strong, like serpents, they will be no more effective than serpents with broken fangs. But even though the soul is the master of intelligence and mind, and the senses also, still, unless it is strengthened by association with Kṛṣṇa in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, there is every chance of falling down due to the agitated mind.

 

[Bg. 3.42]

 

 

In other words, the uncontrolled senses, agitated mind and misguided intelligence are distracting us from perceiving the true nature of the self.  This agitation is due to our false conception of being a purusa (enjoyer) of the material nature, who is disconnected from the Supreme Whole Krsna. Purification of such illusory perception can be done immediately if we engage in the service to the real purusa the Supreme Lord Sri Krsna Himself and this can be done very easily by chanting the maha-mantra:

 

Hare Kṛṣṇa Hare Kṛṣṇa

Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Hare Hare,

Hare Rāma Hare Rāma

Rāma Rāma Hare Hare

 

This is transcendental sound vibration, and this will help us to cleanse the dust on the mirror of our mind. On the mind we have accumulated material dust. Just like on the Second Avenue, due to the constant traffic of motor car, there is always a creation of dusting over everything, similarly, by our manipulation of materialistic activities, there are some material dusts which are accumulated on the mind, and therefore we are unable to see things in true perspective. So this process, this vibration of transcendental sound, Hare Kṛṣṇa Hare Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Hare Hare, Hare Rāma Hare Rāma Rāma Rāma Hare Hare, will cleanse the dust. And, as soon as the dust is cleared, then, as you can see on the mirror the nice face of yours, similarly we can see our real, I mean to say, constitutional position, "what I am."

 

Bhagavad-gītā 4.7-9 -- New York, July 22, 1966

 

Besides the scriptural evidence of the Vedas, there ae other types of evidences. Hypothesis for example is also a type of universally accepted evidence.  If you changed your body but remained so many times in this life where’s the logic that you will cease to exist when the old body dies?

 

Satsvarūpa:They have to agree that the baby's body is gone and the young man's body is gone. They have to agree. But they say that that doesn't mean logically that I have to take another body.

Prabhupāda: What is the other logic? If you have changed your body so many times, why not change this body? What is your reason? Natural course it should be that I have changed so many bodies so this body I shall change. This is natural logic. And what is his logic?

Satsvarūpa: So he said... They say it may be or it may not be.

Prabhupāda: But that is your rascaldom. But this is the real logic.

 

Morning Walk -- June 8, 1974, Geneva

 

Ultimately however, the best evidence is to hear the information from the perfect authority of Vedic knowledge. It might sound crazy to a crazy, but this is the only process which can get us from blind faith. 

 

"Since the Vedic knowledge is pure, we accept it. Whatever Krsna says, we accept. This is Krsna Consciousness. That saves much time. If you accept the right authority or the source of knowledge, then you save much time. For example, there are two systems of knowledge in the material world, inductive and deductive. From deductive, you accept that man is mortal. Your father says man is mortal, your sister says man is mortal, everyone says man is mortal—but you do not experiment. You accept it as fact that man is mortal. If you want to research to find out whether man is mortal, you have to study each and every man, and you may come to think that there may be some man who is not dying, but you have not seen him yet. So in this way your researching will never be finished. This process is called in Sanskrit, āroha, the ascending process. If you want to attain knowledge by any personal en­deavor, by exercising your imperfect senses, you will never come to the right conclusions. That is not possible."

 

(Sri Isopanisad introduction)

 

 

THE END

 

0 Comments

Fri

31

May

2013

The Proof Of You Part 26

by purujit dasa

 

WHAT ABOUT AMINO ACIDS?

 

Objection might be raised that we have not created ant, but we have created an amoeba by combination of amino acids. Even if you did for argument’s sake, it would still be life comes from life situation, because you are alive. You have manipulated the conditions so the soul can enter. In order to prove the theory that life is made from matter, you would have to make a living entity alive again after it dies and at the same time prove that it is the same entity as before with the same taste, likes, dislikes, language, skills, talents, propensities. That would be a proof that our identity is simply a product of matter.

 

Svarūpa Dāmodara: Then I asked, "Supposing I give you the chemical materials, say, the molecules likes amino acids and the big molecules like DNA and RNA..." These are the molecules, which they think necessary for the maintenance of life. "Supposing I give you all these chemical compounds, then do you think that you will be able to put life into it. If you get all the chemical materials necessary, but will you be able to put life into it?" Then he said, "I do not know."

Prabhupāda: Then why you are talking nonsense? (laughter)

 

Morning Walk -- May 2, 1973, Los Angeles

 

 

Cyavana: They use amino acids and water and electricity.

Prabhupāda: Bluffing.

Cyavana: But this gave great strength to their theory that life can come from matter because they created a one-celled amoeba. They say they created it, that life actually came into it.

Prabhupāda: They said everything, but where is the proof?

Cyavana: Well, the scientists saw it.

Prabhupāda: Saw it? Now show us. They saw it at their home.

Cyavana: They put the chemicals, and then it moved. It became alive.

Prabhupāda: All rascals.

Yadubara: In so many years they haven't done anything else.

Prabhupāda: Just see.

Cyavana: No, that's as far as they got, but it really boosted their theory, at least so that they thought they would be able to create life.

Prabhupāda: All rascals.

Dayānanda: There's also a scientific argument against that, that there may have been the life conditions or the conditions conducive to life, so therefore life came, but not that that was produced by chemical combination. Just like they're actually opposing that argument, scientific school that opposes the idea that they actually produced the life itself.

Cyavana: Some of them said the life was already there in the water to begin with.

Prabhupāda: In the water, life there is; in the air, in.... That is another thing. But life is different from the water. That is our proposal.

 

Morning Walk -- March 26, 1976, Delhi

 

If you put some animals together in one room and if they have sex and an offspring is born, are you the creator of the offspring just because you put them in a room? The life is already there. Make amoeba out of nothing. Unless you do like that, where is the proof that life was not there already? You have simply made suitable conditions for life to manifest.

 

The body of the soul develops in four different ways according to its different sources. One kind of body, that of the trees and plants, sprouts from the earth; the second kind of body grows from perspiration, as with flies, germs and bugs; the third kind of body develops from eggs; and the fourth develops from an embryo.

 

SB 3.31.2 (first edition)

 

 

Harikeśa: They can make these little amoebas but they can't make ants.

Prabhupāda: Amoebas, that is automatically... By perspiration it comes out. There are four sources of life: udbija, jarayuja, svedaja, and, what is other? Andaja. Andaja means life comes from the egg. That is called andaja. And life comes from, under certain circumstances... Just like trees, grass. It is called udbija. And then jarayaja, just like we human beings or animals, they come from the embryo. And svedaja. And some living entities come out from perspiration.

Harikeśa: So they were saying in this experiment they made that they completely...

Prabhupāda: Four kinds of generating process is there. So what they have studied? That germs come out perspiration, that is already accepted in the Vedas. Under certain circumstances the germs come by, what is called? Scientific name?

Siddha-svarūpa: I don't know.

Prabhupāda: Just like bugs, bed bugs. Due to your perspiration of the body, the bed being unclean, they come.

Harikeśa: So the capability was already there in like seed, and you just watered it.

Prabhupāda: Yes. Yes.

Harikeśa: So when they said they created life in this laboratory experiment, the capability...

Prabhupāda: But that also they cannot do. That also they cannot do.

Harikeśa: But the capability was there and they just watered it. They...

Prabhupāda: What is the capability?

Harikeśa: There was one of these four circumstances for life in that test...

Prabhupāda: Potency, that is potency.

Harikeśa: Yeah. And they just made the circumstance proper so that life came.

Prabhupāda: Yes.

 

Morning Walk -- June 10, 1975, Honolulu

 

 

The scientists cannot make life, neither they can make matter as a matter of fact. They simply take whatever is already there, somehow alter it and claim they have created it. That’s cheating. 

 

Hṛdayānanda: That would be real science to know the cause of the petrol.

Prabhupāda: Yes. How petrol is produced in so large quantity? Who has made this arrangement? How it is producing? They are not interested.

Hṛdayānanda: So as you were saying then, just to manipulate the petrol in different ways, that's like the art, as you've been saying.

Prabhupāda: That's all. You cannot produce petrol. Just like gold is already there, manufactured by God. You can make only different types of ornaments, that's all. Everything. This metal covering of this body, you have not produced this metal. They are like the carpenter. The carpenter has not produced the wood nor the metal instrument nor himself, but he is working. This body is also not produced by him. That is also made by Kṛṣṇa. His intelligence is also made by Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is giving the body. Kṛṣṇa is giving the intelligence. Kṛṣṇa is giving the wood. Kṛṣṇa is giving the instrument. Now, if you produce some furniture, to whom it will belong? To the carpenter or to the supplier of everything? Who will enjoy it? Who will enjoy it? If the carpenter claims that "I have done it," that is foolishness. You have done it as a worker, and you have been supplied with everything, your intelligence, your food, your instrument, your ingredient. Therefore the supplier should be the proprietor, not the carpenter. That is real philosophy.

 

Morning Walk -- February 21, 1975, Caracas

 

 

As we have already pointed out in this presentation, conception of a child is not the result of sexual union, but because a soul takes shelter of that situation. If it was just a question of sexual intercourse, a child would be produced every single time people have sex life. But that’s not the case. Similarly, if the scientists want to proclaim that amoeba can be produced from matter, they should be able to produce it every single time without an error. This is however impossible, because ultimately it is the scientist who supposedly “creates” life and a scientist himself is conditioned by the laws of nature. As such he’s conditioned to make mistakes, although he does not wish to.

Even if let’s say the scientist was creating the environment for the soul of amoeba to enter, we could say that each time the scientist makes a mistake, the soul was not meant to enter by the law of karma. And similarly, each time the scientist gets it right, the soul was meant to enter by the law of karma.

 

The process of quitting this body and getting another body in the material world is also organized. A man dies after it has been decided what form of body he will have in the next life. Higher authorities, not the living entity himself, make this decision.

 

Bg-1972: introduction

 

So the scientists themselves are under the law of the greatest scientist –God. The whole making life cheating is just taking credit for something that is being done by God already.

 

 

One scientist in Delhi, our Delhi festival, he said very nicely that "We scientists, we are just like learning how to bark like dog." Yes. He said very plainly. Because a dog is barking, everyone knows. But if there is a tent and advertisement, yes, that "Mr. such and such will bark like a dog," and people will come and pay ten dollars' fee: "A man is barking. Very wonderful. Let us see." So these rascals, the chemists, they are trying to manufacture living being within test tube, and they are becoming very famous: "Oh, now they are making life in the..." Rascal, there are so many hundreds and millions of life are there, every day being created. What credit you'll get if you manufacture a life within test tube? But the rascals, they are: "Oh, scientists. He is now going to manufacture life." "No, show me how made..." "Yes, we are trying. It will be in future." Yes.

 

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 6.1.19

 

The true science is therefore not to take the credit which belongs to God, but become His instrument and act under His instruction. By such devotional service, perfect knowledge of the soul is revealed from within the heart, where the Lord resides.

 

Even Brahmā, the creator of the universe, admits that he is not the actual creator but is simply inspired by the Lord Nārāyaṇa and therefore creates under His superintendence those things which are already created by Him, the Supersoul of all living entities. Two identities of soul, the Supersoul and the individual soul, are admitted to be in the living entity, even by the greatest authority of the universe. The Supersoul is the Supreme Lord, the Personality of Godhead, whereas the individual soul is the eternal servitor of the Lord. The Lord inspires the individual soul to create what is already created by the Lord, and by the good will of the Lord a discoverer of something in the world is accredited as the discoverer. It is said that Columbus discovered the Western hemisphere, but actually the tract of land was not created by Columbus. The vast tract of land was already there by the omnipotency of the Supreme Lord, and Columbus, by dint of his past service unto the Lord, was blessed with the credit of discovering America. Similarly, no one can create anything without the sanction of the Lord, since everyone sees according to his ability. This ability is also awarded by the Lord according to one’s willingness to render service unto the Lord. One must therefore be voluntarily willing to render service unto the Lord, and thus the Lord will empower the doer in proportion to his surrender unto the lotus feet of the Lord.

 

SB 2.5.17 first printing edition

 

(to be continued...)

 

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Thu

23

May

2013

The Proof Of You Part 25

Where you get the information that this, from matter life is possible. "In future." But in future.... In inceptive condition you show something. Just like formerly they were flying balloons. So because they were flying, they could say that "Future we shall fly a big city." And in the history we can see that that is not impossible, because in the inceptive condition or initiative condition we see that big things can be flown. But here you cannot even prepare an ant. You have not been able to prepare even a small ant, germ. Show me. So why do you say, "In future I shall do it"?

 

Room Conversation -- April 20, 1976, Melbourne

 

(to be continued...)

 

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Thu

16

May

2013

The Proof Of You Part 24

by purujit dasa


CULTURING CELLS

Scientists in their desperate endeavour to make life out of matter also advocate for a technique called cell culturing, where they keep individual cells alive through artificial means. In this way, they hope they will be able to “create” organs and when they put the organs together, the body as a whole will become alive. Just like Frankenstein. The problem with this is that you need the soul to keep the body going, so even if you succeed to make a whole body through cell culturing, you end up with a zombie- a body which is alive but has no consciousness in it.

 

 

Sadāpūta: Śrīla Prabhupāda, would it be possible for them to make a body and have a living entity enter into it?

Prabhupāda: Yes, there is yogic principle. They can enter into a young body and act as young man.

Sadāpūta: So a scientist then could claim he created life. He could... The way they talk, if he made a cell...

Prabhupāda: First of all let them, these foolish rascals, let them understand what is the point who is missing. Then they will replace. They have no knowledge what is missing. They are so fool.

Dr. Wolf: Śrīla Prabhupāda, they would not create. They would only imitate.

Prabhupāda: That is not... It is never created. That is their missing point, that life is never created and they are trying to create.

 

Room Conversation with Svarūpa Dāmodara -- March 1, 1975, Atlanta

 

 

Ravīndra-svarūpa: But it's seen that the scientists, they can take some skin from your body and by putting in different solutions can keep that skin itself alive for such a long time. They have taken the heart of a chicken out of the chicken's body and then kept it beating for so many hours even though that heart was away from the main chicken. Or they take some other tissue and keep it alive. So they say that each cell is an individual living being.

Prabhupāda: So we have no objection.

Ravīndra-svarūpa: That is all right. So there is a spirit soul in every...

Prabhupāda: No, no. All right or not all right I don't say. But if they say like that, we have no objection

Svarūpa Dāmodara: So the understanding to find out what life is is just to study what a cell is. That is their... They say that cells are composed of these molecules.

Prabhupāda: What is the position of the cells when the man dies?

Svaupa Dāmodara: The cells are dead. The cells that compose the body, they are dead. There are may be new living entities coming from different parts, but the cell that composed the human body is dead. They cannot reproduce anymore.

Prabhupāda: So what is your proposal? That cell is life?

Svarūpa Dāmodara: Yes.

Prabhupāda: So can you develop life from the cells? As you said that you take the skin and you keep, so take the cells and develop into life.

Svarūpa Dāmodara: That's called culturing of the cells. They can culture it.

Prabhupāda: That's all right. Whether you have done it.

Ravīndra-svarūpa: Well, they have that process called cloning?

Svarūpa Dāmodara: No, no, this is the culture. That means take a cell from a living tissue, and you culture it and you supply the sufficient nutrients. Then theoretically they will grow forever. They will divide. They will...

Prabhupāda: So they will grow to a human being?

Svarūpa Dāmodara: Not a human being, but the cells just divide.

Prabhupāda: Then an ant, an ant?

Svarūpa Dāmodara: No.

Prabhupāda: Then what is this? (laughter)

 

Morning Walk -- July 14, 1975, Philadelphia

 

Pañcadraviḍa: ...take the chemicals and combine them together in a test tube so that a soul can enter into that and...

Prabhupāda: God is not your father's servant, that He will arrange to bring the soul. You are God's servant.

Pañcadraviḍa: So you're... Cannot be done, then?

Prabhupāda: No. If you bring, you can bring soul by some arrangement, then we shall think that you are better than God. But you are rascal. You are thinking like that. You cannot do that. God will not agree to send a soul to your arrangement. You should always remember that you are servant of God. God is not your servant. That is knowledge.

 

Morning Walk -- April 2, 1975, Māyāpur

 

(to be continued...)

 

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Thu

09

May

2013

The Proof Of You Part 23

by purujit dasa

 

ISN'T THE DNA THE SAME?

 

The materialistic scientists bring up a material thing which does not change throughout one’s lifetime –DNA, or a genetic code. This DNA they argue is the reason why one man remains the same although his body changes. To this we can again answer that if the DNA was the source of life, then the scientists should be able to create life simply out of DNA, but that they cannot do, so such claims have no substantial value.

 

Prajāpati: I used that argument once, Śrīla Prabhupāda, and the scientists said to me, "It is the chromosomes, the tiny chromosomes that do that change."

Prabhupāda: That is their jugglery of words, these rascals. (laughter) "Chromosome, promosome." He will manufacture some word. But where is your chromosome of child body? What is that child body? Where it has gone? If you know, "chromosome, promosome," where has your child's body gone? That is the difficulty. These rascals, they do not know anything. Still, they are teachers and manufacture some jugglery of words. That's all. That is the difficulty. "Chromosome." What is that chromosome? What does it mean, chromosome?

Prajāpati: It is a tiny structure of organic matter that can constantly reproduce...

Prabhupāda: That's all right. When reproduce, the last body is gone.

Prajāpati: They say that the chromosomes that are transferred from father to son...

Prabhupāda: Still, the father's body is not the son's body. It is different body.

Prajāpati: It has come from father's body.

Prabhupāda: That all right, but the father's body is different. The father's pains and pleasure and the son's pains and pleasure are not the same. It may be that the father has given the ingredient of the body, but that does not mean the father's body and the son's body the same. Neither the mind is same, neither intelligence is same. It is all different. Otherwise why a son becomes disobedient to the father, "I don't agree with you"? That means, "Your intelligence, your mind, is different from my mind. I cannot agree with you." Therefore everything is different.

 

Morning Walk -- December 18, 1973, Los Angeles

 

(to be continued)

 

1 Comments

Thu

02

May

2013

The Proof Of You Part 22

by purujit dasa

 

WE CAN MAKE LIFE IN A TEST TUBE

 

Just as with cloning, the scientists simply change the environment for the soul to take shelter in. If they were really making life out of matter, it would be easy when a person dies, to manipulate matter and make that same person alive again. Why they cannot do that?

 

Svarūpa Dāmodara: They are trying to make babies in a test tube.

Prabhupāda: Eh?

Svarūpa Dāmodara: In a few years.

Prabhupāda: What is that test tube?

Svarūpa Dāmodara: In the laboratory, the chemical laboratory, biological laboratory, so they'll take the combinations of the male and the female....

Prabhupāda: Then where is the test tube? It is taken from the living entities.

Svarūpa Dāmodara: Yes.

Prabhupāda: Then where is the test tube? Test tube is a place for combination. As it is combined in the womb. So that is not advancement.

 

Morning Walk -- April 19, 1973, Los Angeles

 

(to be continued....)

 


 

0 Comments

Thu

25

Apr

2013

The Proof Of You Part 21

by purujit dasa

 

 

WHAT ABOUT CLONING?

 

Although the scientists think that cloning is a new thing, Srimad Bhagavatam, written 5000 years ago gives a vivid description of cloning in the following verse:

 

 

viniścityaivam ṛṣayo

vipannasya mahīpate

mamanthur ūru tarasā

tatrāsīd bāhuko nara

 

 

TRANSLATION

 

After making a decision, the saintly persons and sages churned the thighs of the dead body of King Vena with great force and according to a specific method. As a result of this churning, a dwarf-like person was born from King Vena's body.

 

PURPORT by Srila Prabhupada:

 

That a person was born by the churning of the thighs of King Vena proves that the spirit soul is individual and separate from the body. The great sages and saintly persons could beget another person from the body of the dead King Vena, but it was not possible for them to bring King Vena back to life. King Vena was gone, and certainly he had taken another body. The saintly persons and sages were only concerned with the body of Vena because it was a result of the seminal succession in the family of Mahārāja Dhruva. Consequently the ingredients by which another body could be produced were there in the body of King Vena. By a certain process, when the thighs of the dead body were churned, another body came out. Although dead, the body of King Vena was preserved by drugs and mantras chanted by King Vena's mother. In this way the ingredients for the production of another body were there. When the body of the person named Bāhuka came out of the dead body of King Vena, it was really not very astonishing. It was simply a question of knowing how to do it. From the semina of one body, another body is produced, and the life symptoms are visible due to the soul's taking shelter of this body. One should not think that it was impossible for another body to come out of the dead body of Mahārāja Vena. This was performed by the skillful action of the sages.

 

SB 4.14.43 (first edition)

 

In cloning, certain cells are taken from an organism; they are put in the womb of a mother, who later gives birth to a “clone”. Scientists managed to clone animals and perhaps even a human, that is a fact. Did they create life out of matter? Hardly. They still need a living mother and living cells, which are already there.

 

 

Harikeśa: Now they are inventing these different DNA and RNA molecules to change people by injecting them with these different things before they are born, making new people.

Prabhupāda: That is not very difficult thing. If you make some vegetable, if you add more sugar it becomes sweet. If you add more salt it becomes salty. That you can do. That is not very difficult. Our question is wherefrom the life comes? That is our… So they do not give any answer to this. That is their foolishness. What is that life? They say life developed from chemical. Now do it. By chemical combination make in one egg and give it to the fomenting machine. What is that? Fomenting machine? They have got heating machine?

Harikeśa: Incubator.

Prabhupāda: Incubator. Put it there. Then we shall accept your science. Why don’t you do that? Then your all theories are useless. This is practical.

 

Morning Walk — Durban, October 13, 1975

 

Taking it on the authority of the Vedas, the new cloned body develops only because the soul has taken shelter of it. The scientists can duplicate the body, but they cannot duplicate the person who resides in the body. 

 

Ātreya Ṛṣi: Well, the way they're doing it is through the genetic, yes.

Prabhupāda: Whatever it may be, they are trying...

Ātreya Ṛṣi: Yes.

Prabhupāda: ...to make a xerox copy. So why not the original?

Devotee (1): What is that?

Prabhupāda: Explain to him.

Ātreya Ṛṣi: Why not the original?

Prabhupāda: Yes. The scientists, they are trying to make a xerox copy of Professor Einstein. So why not the original? Hm? What is their answer?

Ātreya Ṛṣi: They cannot keep the original alive.

Prabhupāda: No, that's all right, but let them make one original.

Devotee (1): They can't even begin.

Prabhupāda: Hm?

Devotee (1): They can't even make a cell.

Prabhupāda: Then what is their credit?

Devotee (1): They have made a computer.

Prabhupāda: Hm?

Devotee (1): They have made a computer, but it takes a human being to program the computer.

Prabhupāda: So what is their credit? If you simply copy something, that is not credit. The credit should go to the original.

Ātreya Ṛṣi: The scientists admit that there is nothing new that they can make. Everything is the manipulation of the laws of nature.

Prabhupāda: Then the thing is that as they are individual person trying to do something wonderful, the individual person who has already done all this wonderful, how much credit He deserves. If by simply copying you want to take so much credit that you will defy the existence of God, you are so fool, rascal, then how much credit should be given to the original person who has made all these things existing. What is their answer?

Ātreya Ṛṣi: They simply don't care.

Devotee (1): Like that man said last night, "We will do it."

Prabhupāda: You will do, that's all right, you will do it, but it is already there. What is your credit, you will do it? It is already there, then what is your credit?

 

Morning Walk -- June 30, 1972, San Diego

 

Paramahaṁsa: There's another very interesting factor that scientists, they state that matter is, or that there is, they dispute the fact that there's one soul within the body. There's a special kind of worm, it's an earthworm, that if you cut it in half, both parts will live.

Prabhupāda: Yes.

Paramahaṁsa: So they wonder how is it possible that if there is soul, that there could be two souls within one body?

Prabhupāda: Yes, why not. Souls takes the opportunity.

Paramahaṁsa: Oh, it takes the opportunity of the other body, the fertile...

Prabhupāda: Yes, yes.

 

Morning Walk

At Cheviot Hills Golf Course

 

May 13, 1973, Los Angeles

 

(to be continued...)

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Thu

18

Apr

2013

Proof Of You Part 20

by purujit dasa


WHAT ABOUT HEART TRANSPLANTS? WHEN WE REPLACE A HEART, IS THE SOUL REPLACED AS WELL? 


Svarūpa Dāmodara: Śrīla Prabhupāda, what about the heart transplant? The spirit soul is within the heart, but when the... in the medical science nowadays, the old heart can be replaced by a new one. So what happens with the spirit soul with the old one?Prabhupāda: But that does not mean that new ones will increase their duration of life. That is our challenge.Svarūpa Dāmodara: But the personality is changed?Prabhupāda: No.Svarūpa Dāmodara: Why not?Prabhupāda: Why changed? Suppose if I sit from this chair to this chair, why I am changed? I can change my seat. It does not mean that I am changed.
Morning Walk -- December 2, 1973, Los Angeles

The point is that the heart is not the source of life. It is simply a seat for the soul. 
Therefore when the soul goes away, these rascals says, "heart failure." Not heart failure, the soul has gone from the heart. Heart is also mechanical thing, but the sitting place of the soul is there. So heart failure means the soul has gone from the heart.
Bhagavad-gītā 13.3 -- Paris, August 11, 1973

Hanumān: Now they're doing this heart transplantation. They're taking the heart of one person...Prabhupāda: The soul changes from this heart to that heart. That's all. Just like you are running your car. It stops. Then you change, this car to that car. That's all. (laughter) This is it. It is very common thing.
Bhagavad-gītā 2.14 -- Mexico, February 14, 1975
Girirāja: Now they have machines that when the person is in coma, the machines artificially keep the heart beating and the other processes...Prabhupāda: Then heart beating will go on, either you apply machine or no machine. Heart beating. But when the heart stops, no machine can revive it. So what is the use of machine? But by nature's way when the heart beating will stop, no machine can help. That is not possible.
Morning Walk -- April 7, 1974, Bombay
(to be continued...)

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Fri

12

Apr

2013

The Proof Of You Part 19

by purujit dasa

 

SOUL MIGHT BE ETERNAL, BUT HOW DO YOU KNOW THAT THE SOUL TAKES ANOTHER BODY AFTER DEATH?

 

Too much absorption in the bodily concept of life means that our subtle body(mind, intelligence and ego) will have to be transferred into yet another body to fulfill our illusory bodily desires. This is the law of karma. Krsna says in the Bhagavad-gita:

 

yaṁyaṁ vāpi smaran bhāvaṁ

tyajaty ante kalevaram

taṁtam evaiti kaunteya

sadā tad-bhāva-bhāvitaḥ

 

Whatever state of being one remembers when he quits his body, that state he will attain without fail.

 

Bg 8.6

 

Our present body is therefore the result of our mental state at the time of death of our previous body. How this process works is explained in the following verse:

 

The living entity in the material world carries his different conceptions of life from one body to another as the air carries aromas.

 

Bg 15.8

 

It is a false claim that after the annihilation of this body everything is finished. The individual soul is transmigrating from one body to another, and his present body and present activities are the background of his next body. One gets a different body according to karma, and he has to quit this body in due course. It is stated here that the subtle body, which carries the conception of the next body, develops another body in the next life.

 

Bg 15.8 purport

 

Prabhupāda: When this body cannot work any more... Because this body is a machine. So a machine, if he does not move, then you, have to change to another machine.

Svarūpa Dāmodara: The desire is not... Actually it is not burned; it just changed. The desire is changed to for a higher purpose. We have a choice between the subtle desires. Just change is the there from one to another.

Prabhupāda: No, the same example: just like in a motor car you desire to go this side, but the machine is stopped, so you have to accept another motor car. It is like that, to fulfill your desire. After all it is a machine. Machine is matter. So it has got a time to work. When it is not working, then you change to another machine to fulfill your desire.

 

Morning Walk -- July 14, 1975, Philadelphia

 

(to be continued..)

 

 

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04

Apr

2013

The Proof Of You Part 18

by purujit dasa

 

ACCEPTANCE OF ANOTHER BODY AFTER DEATH IS A QUESTION OF FAITH

 

This objection is based on assumption that although the body changes throughout our life and yet we, the consciousness do not, there’s no continuation of the consciousness when the body disintegrates. People who assume like this often ask for a proof that the consciousness continues after death. We do have a nice proof that the consciousness is present when we see the symptoms of consciousness in a body in front of us, but what will prove that the consciousness is still going on after the soul leaves the body and the symptoms can no longer be perceived by our senses?

 

As we have mentioned in the introduction, in the example of seeing the sun as a yellow disc, our sense perception is actually imperfect. This brings us to a question of what avail is to us an evidence acquired through such imperfect blunt senses then? There is a chance that even if the evidence was bona fide, we would not be able to perceive it.

 

 

Dr. Singh. Opponents will say that according to their observation, the nature of consciousness is that it lasts for only one body.

Śrīla Prabhupāda. That is foolishness. In Bhagavad-gītā (2.13) Kṛṣṇa explains:

 

dehino 'smin yathā dehe

kaumāraṁyauvanaṁ jarā

tathā dehāntara-prāptir

dhīras tatra na muhyati

 

"As the embodied soul continually passes, in this body, from boyhood to youth to old age, the soul similarly passes into another body at death. The self-realized soul is not bewildered by such a change." Just as this body is always changing (as I can see in my daily experience), there is a similar change at the time of death.

Dr. Singh. But according to the scientists, we cannot actually observe this last change.

Śrīla Prabhupāda. Their eyes are so imperfect that they cannot observe many, many things. Their ignorance does not make the Bhagavad-gītā unscientific. Why don't the scientists admit the imperfection of their senses? They must first admit the imperfection of their senses. Their seeing power does not determine what is and what is not science. Dogs cannot understand the laws of nature. Does that mean the laws of nature don't exist?

Dr. Singh. Well, the scientists admit that argument, but they say the way to become perfect is through objective information and experience.

Śrīla Prabhupāda. No. That is not the way to become perfect. No one can become perfect through imperfect thinking, and our thinking must be imperfect because our senses and minds are imperfect.

 

Life Comes from Life

The Tenth Morning Walk:

May 14, 1973

 

Once there was a frog in a well, and when a friend informed him of the existence of the Atlantic Ocean, he asked the friend, "Oh, what is this Atlantic Ocean?"

"It is a vast body of water," his friend replied.

"How vast? Is it twice the size of this well?"

"Oh, no-much, much larger," his friend replied.

"How much larger? Ten times the size?" In this way, the frog went on calculating. But what is the possibility or ever understanding the vastness of the great ocean in this way? Our faculties, our experience, and our powers of speculation are always limited. The speculations of the scientists only give rise to such frog philosophy.

 

(Life on Other Planets)

 

 

The scientists however accept the existence of matter. Therefore it should not be a problem to accept that the nature of matter is that it deteriorates. Whatever we see around us will be finished at one point: our house, our clothes, the trees growing outside, etc. The body is made of matter and therefore it cannot work forever either. 

 

Just like in your childhood you had a small body. That is no longer existing. That means you have changed your body. Similarly, you'll have to change this body. When this body will not work anymore... Because it is material. Every material things deteriorate and it becomes useless at certain length of time. Any machine, any clock... Therefore it has been taken as dress: vāsāṁsi jīrṇāni yathā vihāya [Bg. 2.22].

 

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 6.1.8

 

According to the Vedas, the living entity is eternal. Although our childhood body is gone, we have not died. Therefore the logical conclusion is that our consciousness must continue even after death.  Direct perception is not the only type of evidence there is. Hypothesis is equally valid. If you changed your body but remained so many times in this life where’s the logic that you will cease to exist when the old body dies?

 

Satsvarūpa:They have to agree that the baby's body is gone and the young man's body is gone. They have to agree. But they say that that doesn't mean logically that I have to take another body.

Prabhupāda: What is the other logic? If you have changed your body so many times, why not change this body? What is your reason? Natural course it should be that I have changed so many bodies so this body I shall change. This is natural logic. And what is his logic?

Satsvarūpa: So he said... They say it may be or it may not be.

Prabhupāda: But that is your rascaldom. But this is the real logic.

 

Morning Walk -- June 8, 1974, Geneva

 

 

 

How, where, in what type of body that we cannot perceive through our imperfect senses directly. That is impossible. 

 

 

"Since the Vedic knowledge is pure, we accept it. Whatever Krsna says, we accept. This is Krsna Consciousness. That saves much time. If you accept the right authority or the source of knowledge, then you save much time. For example, there are two systems of knowledge in the material world, inductive and deductive. From deductive, you accept that man is mortal. Your father says man is mortal, your sister says man is mortal, everyone says man is mortal—but you do not experiment. You accept it as fact that man is mortal. If you want to research to find out whether man is mortal, you have to study each and every man, and you may come to think that there may be some man who is not dying, but you have not seen him yet. So in this way your researching will never be finished. This process is called in Sanskrit, āroha, the ascending process. If you want to attain knowledge by any personal en­deavor, by exercising your imperfect senses, you will never come to the right conclusions. That is not possible."

 

(Sri Isopanisad introduction)

 

Still, it is possible to understand its existence by the process of hearing from the perfect source.

 

Anything which is beyond the scope of experience by our imperfect senses can be realized fully by the sound representation. A person transmitting sound from a far distant place can be factually experienced. If this is materially possible, why not spiritually?

 

SB 1972 1.5.38 purport

 

If we talk to a friend on a walky-talky, we cannot see him, nor can we hear him. What we hear from the walky-talky is actually not his voice directly, but it is a sound representation of his voice, which is produced by the speaker of the walky-talky. It is not true that by hearing the sound representation, we are bereft of experiencing what he says. In fact, in terms of receiving the information, which is being transmitted, there’s no difference between hearing his voice and hearing the sound representation of his voice. It is not difficult to conclude then that if the person who we are hearing the information from has a factual experience of a phenomenon and if he describes it to us as it is, our experience is direct. In fact, it can be more direct than actually experiencing the phenomenon by our eyes. Coming back to the example of the sun which to our eyes appears as a yellow disc, if we hear from an astronaut on a walky-talky who is actually seeing the sun planet right now from all angles in his spaceship, we are experiencing the sun more perfectly through hearing than through seeing the sun directly with our eyes.

 

Similarly, we can still have the proof of the soul’s existence in the next body not through seeing it in front of us, but through hearing from the Vedic scripture (a recorded sound). How do we know that the Vedas are correct? Same process –through hearing (studying them). Just like the modern man takes the word of a scientist for granted on so many things without unnecessarily going through the research himself, throughout the history, all classes of transcendentalists are accepting the authority of the Vedic literature. The authority might be different in the two cases, but the process is the same. We get to know about things which are beyond our perception by hearing from someone who has that perception. Either we believe the Vedas or the scientists, because we’re in ignorance we have to believe someone in order to learn new things. The difference is that in the case of modern science the conclusions change, whereas the Vedic conclusion, which is not tinged by material influence of mistake, illusion, imperfect senses and tendency to cheat remains. Vedic statements are a fact in the past, present and future and many of them have been actually confirmed by modern science as well whereas the so-called scientific facts such as man came from a monkey or life comes from matter were conceived at one point and will similarly vanish at one point because they’re manufactured in the factory of an imperfect scientist’s mind.  

 

 

Karandhara. The basis of what they call "scientific integrity" is that they talk only about what they can directly experience.

Śrīla Prabhupāda. You may talk about your experience, and I may talk about my experience. But why should I accept your experience? You may be a fool, so why should I also become a fool? You may be a frog, but suppose I am a whale. Why should I take your well as all in all? You have your method of acquiring scientific knowledge, and I have mine.

 

Life Comes From Life:  Life on Other Planets

 

 

The modern man has a tendency to reject dogmatic thinking and form his own conclusions based on various sources of information. Why not therefore give receptive hearing to a tradition, which has been here for thousands of years and still remains scientifically accurate as an experiment? What is the objection? As the Vedic scriptures are the only  source of knowledge known to man, which actually explain the nature of the soul in such a detail, we actually have no other choice than at least study what they say.

 

As far as the soul's existence is concerned, no one can establish his existence experimentally beyond the proof of śruti or Vedic wisdom. We have to accept this truth, because there is no other source of understanding the existence of the soul, althoughit is a fact by perception. There are many things we have to accept solely on grounds of superior authority. No one can deny the existence of his father, based upon the authority of his mother. There is no other source of understanding the identity of the father except by the authority of the mother. Similarly, there is no other source of understanding the soul except by studying the Vedas.

 

Bg 2.25

 

 

One might ask however, at this point, what distinguishes such process of hearing of the Vedic literature from blind faith. Although the Vedas might give a very logical and minute description of the soul’s existence after the body’s demise, we’re still in doubts –it might be true, it might not be true. Because we cannot perceive the soul’s presence, we’re doomed to be in such doubt forever?

This is of course an intelligent observation. We should mention however, that besides the information about the soul’s nature, the Vedas also give a process by which one can actually have a direct experience of the soul’s eternality. If one follows the process, he can have a direct experience of what he has learned from the Vedic scriptures before. So it is not a blind faith. There’s a hypothesis and there’s an experiment. Simply we have to be willing to undertake it.

In the conditioned state, our pure perception of the self is covered. Daily we identify with the senses, with the mind, with the intelligence and with our false ego and thus identified we look for happiness. Although the soul is eternal and thus cannot be satisfied by temporary pleasures, we are again and again trying to enjoy materially and hope that one day we will succeed. This is actually the blind faith. We have subjected our perception to be controlled by such a lust and it is for this reason we have difficulty to perceive our eternality, although it is a fact by perception.

The aim of yoga is to come out of such blind faith and become free from the different coverings on the soul and act with the pure self in relation to the source of all pleasure, Supreme Absolute Whole –Krsna. 

 

Prabhupāda:  Actually soul is above intelligence. Above intelligence. Our gross senses, that is our present perception, direct. And beyond these gross senses, there is the mind. And beyond the mind, there is intelligence. And beyond intelligence, there is soul. So come to that platform requires that meditation process to make the sense activities calm and quiet, mind settle, and then come to the intelligence platform, then come to the spiritual platform.

 

 

Room Conversation with Dr. John Mize -- June 23, 1975, Los Angeles

 

indriyāṇi parāṇy āhur

indriyebhyaḥ paraṁmanaḥ

manasas tu parā buddhir

yo buddheḥ paratas tu saḥ

 

The working senses are superior to dull matter; mind is higher than the senses; intelligence is still higher than the mind; and he [the soul] is even higher than the intelligence.

 

The senses are different outlets for the activities of lust. Lust is reserved within the body, but it is given vent through the senses. Therefore, the senses are superior to the body as a whole. These outlets are not in use when there is superior consciousness, or Kṛṣṇa consciousness. In Kṛṣṇa consciousness the soul makes direct connection with the Supreme Personality of Godhead; therefore the bodily functions, as described here, ultimately end in the Supreme Soul. Bodily action means the functions of the senses, and stopping the senses means stopping all bodily actions. But since the mind is active, then, even though the body may be silent and at rest, the mind will act—as it does during dreaming. But, above the mind there is the determination of the intelligence, and above the intelligence is the soul proper. If, therefore, the soul is directly engaged with the Supreme, naturally all other subordinates, namely, the intelligence, mind and the senses, will be automatically engaged. In the Kaṭha Upaniṣad there is a passage in which it is said that the objects of sense gratification are superior to the senses, and mind is superior to the sense objects. If, therefore, the mind is directly engaged in the service of the Lord constantly, then there is no chance of the senses becoming engaged in other ways. This mental attitude has already been explained. If the mind is engaged in the transcendental service of the Lord, there is no chance of its being engaged in the lower propensities. In the Kaṭha Upaniṣad the soul has been described as mahān, the great. Therefore the soul is above all-namely, the sense objects, the senses, the mind and the intelligence. Therefore, directly understanding the constitutional position of the soul is the solution of the whole problem.

With intelligence one has to seek out the constitutional position of the soul and then engage the mind always in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That solves the whole problem. A neophyte spiritualist is generally advised to keep aloof from the objects of senses. One has to strengthen the mind by use of intelligence. If by intelligence one engages one's mind in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, by complete surrender unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead, then, automatically, the mind becomes stronger, and even though the senses are very strong, like serpents, they will be no more effective than serpents with broken fangs. But even though the soul is the master of intelligence and mind, and the senses also, still, unless it is strengthened by association with Kṛṣṇa in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, there is every chance of falling down due to the agitated mind.

 

[Bg. 3.42]

 

 

In other words, the uncontrolled senses, agitated mind and misguided intelligence are distracting us from perceiving the true nature of the self.  This agitation is due to our false conception of being a purusa (enjoyer) of the material nature, disconnected from the Supreme Whole Krsna. Purification of such illusory perception can be done immediately if we engage in the service to the real purusa The Supreme Lord Sri Krsna Himself and this can be done very easily by chanting the maha-mantra:

 

Hare Kṛṣṇa Hare Kṛṣṇa

Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Hare Hare,

Hare Rāma Hare Rāma

Rāma Rāma Hare Hare

 

This is transcendental sound vibration, and this will help us to cleanse the dust on the mirror of our mind. On the mind we have accumulated material dust. Just like on the Second Avenue, due to the constant traffic of motor car, there is always a creation of dusting over everything, similarly, by our manipulation of materialistic activities, there are some material dusts which are accumulated on the mind, and therefore we are unable to see things in true perspective. So this process, this vibration of transcendental sound, Hare Kṛṣṇa Hare Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Hare Hare, Hare Rāma Hare Rāma Rāma Rāma Hare Hare, will cleanse the dust. And, as soon as the dust is cleared, then, as you can see on the mirror the nice face of yours, similarly we can see our real, I mean to say, constitutional position, "what I am."

 

Bhagavad-gītā 4.7-9 -- New York, July 22, 1966

 

 (to be continued...)

 

 

 

 

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Thu

28

Mar

2013

The Proof Of You Part 17

by purujit dasa

 

WITH THE “MY HEAD”, “MY ARM”, “MY LEG” ARGUMENT(SEE PART 4) IT’S JUST SEMANTICS; YOU MIGHT AS WELL SAY “MY SOUL.”

 

If there’s so many “my”, there must be a possessor. How we call the possessor is true, simply question of semantics, but the fact is that there is someone who possesses and that possessor is you.

 

SYMPTOMS OF CONSCIOUSNESS (SEE PART 7) : BIRTH, GROWTH, MULTIPLYING, DEATH CAN BE OBSERVED IN A COMPUTER VIRUS, WHICH IS COMPLETELY MATERIAL.

 

A few years ago, we had an internet discussion with a person, who claimed that a computer virus also takes birth when you accidentally download it. It “takes birth” in your computer and then “lives”, “multiplies” and finally “dies” by the workings of an anti virus.  Foolish people like that do not understand that a computer virus does not take birth on its own. It has to be downloaded and triggered by a living person. That person can activate it right away, but he might as well wait for some time and activate it later. The birth of a living being cannot be checked like that according to one’s whims. Therefore the virus is not living. I can delete the virus, download it again and again, delete it, download it as much as I can, it will do the same thing over and over, but can you kill a baby and then make it alive again? No. Why?

 

BUT THE HAIR GROWS SOMETIMES ON A DEAD BODY TOO! IT IS NOT A SYMPTOM OF THE SOUL.

 

Revatīnandana: But they say hair continues to come out sometimes from dead bodies.

Prabhupāda: Sometimes.

Śyāmasundara: I think you said once ... You answered that sometimes the fan turns a little bit after the plug.

Revatīnandana: Yes. Mechanism, bodily mechanism has pulled the plug. That's what I said. Some material mechanism is still functioning like a machine.

Prabhupāda: It has stopped, but maybe just like the fan is stopped, but still moving. Like that.

 

Room Conversation -- August 17, 1971, London

 

(to be continued...)

 

 

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Thu

21

Mar

2013

Proof of You Part 16

by purujit dasa

 

I AM NOT THE SAME EITHER.

 

Sometimes people argue, that the “I” changes also. They say that, for example at one point, when they were little children, they thought the world to be an idyllic place, where there’s no danger and every one lives in peace and harmony. However, as they grew up and started to see that this world is quite a horrible place with wars, bombs, hunger, murderers, etc.  it has changed them from being naive to being a realist or even at some cases pessimist. We have experiences and experiences change us. We develop as personalities, we grow wiser, or we grow more selfish, or more paranoid, etc. Such statements however are only due to misidentification of the “I” with yet another material element, what we call, a “subtle” body.

 

 

 

In Bhagavad-gītā (7.4-5) it is stated that the eight elements earth, water, fire, air, sky, mind, intelligence and false ego are all products of the Lord's inferior energy, whereas the living entities, who are seen to utilize the inferior energy, originally belong to the superior energy, the internal potency of the Lord. The eight inferior energies work grossly and subtly, whereas the superior energy works as the central generating force. This is experienced in the human body. The gross elements, namely, earth, etc., form the external gross body and are like a coat, whereas the subtle mind and false ego act like the inner clothing of the body.

 

SB 3.6.9 purport

 

 

Now, if you simply take time and analyze this subtle body minutely element by element, you will be able to see how the self is independent from it:

 

1.mind(manaḥ)

 

Its function is to accept and reject. Although we try to make it concentrated, the mind is focused but sometimes it’s not. Because we are observing the focused/unfocused mind, we are not the mind. There is an obvious distinction between the observer of the mind and the observed.

 

Devotee: ... the scientists are thinking now that man is his mind. They were talking about the brain.

Prabhupāda: Eh?

Devotee: That if man only knew his mind he would know himself. What is actually the brain? And the mind?

Prabhupāda: Mind, that is also matter, material.

Devotee: They're saying that the mind or the brain is the source of man's consciousness.

Prabhupāda: No. Brain is the instrument for expressing consciousness. Otherwise, when the man is dead, why the brain does not work? Do you follow?

Devotee: Yeah.

Prabhupāda: Why the brain work stops?

 

Morning Walk -- January 15, 1974, Hawaii

 

 

 

2.intelligence(buddhiḥ)

 

Srila Prabhupada defines intelligence as “the power of analyzing things in proper perspective.” In other words, that which helps us to control the mind is the intelligence. By intelligence, we conclude: “Let’s focus the mind now on the Krsna form, because it will give us unlimited pleasure”. But, also we have a choice of misusing our intelligence. Just like the modern science develops an atom bomb. It undoubtedly requires a high degree of intelligence to invent it, but the aim is fighting, an activity, which is under the influence of bodily misidentification. We have a choice between proper usage and improper usage of our intelligence, therefore we are distinct from the intelligence. 

 

Intelligence is the immediate next-door neighbor of the spirit soul. Lusty intelligence influences the spirit soul to acquire the false ego and identify itself with matter, and thus with the mind and senses. The spirit soul becomes addicted to enjoying the material senses and mistakes this as true happiness.

 

Bg 3.40 purport

 

Also, intelligence changes. In our childhood, the intelligence is not very much developed. In the adulthood it develops more. Although the intelligence changes, I, the observer of the change remain.

 

Prabhupāda: Everyone has got mind, but the mind acts under intelligence. But the intelligence of different living entities are different. Similarly mind is also different. A dog's intelligence is not equal to the intelligence of the human being. A dog's mind is not equal to the human being's mind. So actually the soul, being put under different types of body using different types of intelligence, and different some mental, psychic action, thinking, feeling, willing.

 

Discussions on St. Augustine

 

 

3.false ego(ahaṅkāraḥ)

 

In the conditioned existence we think we are the body: man, woman, ugly, beautiful, Canadian, Russian, Chinese and we use our mind and intelligence under these false bodily designations. If I think I’m Canadian, then I become very proud of my country Canada and work for the welfare of all Canadians. People also tend to think they belong to a particular religious designation, and they become very proud of belonging to this sect or that sect, even they might not follow the injunctions written in their particular scripture. This is false ego. But we are not the body and that which makes us think we are is also not us.

 

False ego means accepting this body as oneself. When one understands that he is not his body and is spirit soul, that is real ego. Ego is there. False ego is condemned, but not real ego. In the Vedic literature, it is said: ahaṁbrahmāsmi. I am Brahman, I am spirit. This "I am," the sense of self, also exists in the liberated stage of self-realization. This sense of "I am" is ego, but when the sense of "I am" is applied to this false body, it is false ego. When the sense of self is applied to reality, that is real ego. There are some philosophers who say we should give up our ego, but we cannot give up our ego because ego means identity. We ought, of course, to give up the false identification with the body.

 

Bg 13.8-12 purport

 

(to be continued...)

 

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Thu

14

Mar

2013

The Proof Of You Part 15

by purujit dasa

 

IF THEY’RE DIFFERENT BODIES, WHY THERE’S RESEMBLANCE?

 

Some people also argue that the body is the same because there is a resemblance with my child body, neither do I change my race, gender. In other words, there’s continuity and this continuity preserves the consciousness of us throughout the life, whereas after death, that continuity might cease to be.

 

Devotee: It is explained in Bhagavad-gītā that one change body during the lifetime, but we see that a black man never becomes white, or that there is a constant, there is something constant within the body though it changes. What is it? How come this is, changes body but still we can recognize someone from his youth to his old age.

Prabhupāda: So when you further advance you'll find there is no distinction between black and white. Just like a flower is coming out, there are many colors. So it is coming from the same source. As such there is no such difference, but to make it beautiful there are so many colors. In the sunshine there are seven colors, and from that seven colors, multicolors are coming out, origin the one color white, and then so many colors coming.

 

Bhagavad-gītā 4.24 -- August 4, 1976, New Mayapur (French farm)

 

A famous singer Michael Jackson for example changed from a black to a white person thanks to surgeons. Also, there are transsexuals -people who change their gender from man to woman or from woman to man, but no matter how they change their body, their consciousness is not finished. They do not die by changing their gender. 

 

 

It is said that by modern medical treatment a male can be transformed into a female, and a female into a male. The body, however, has no connection with the soul. The body can be changed, either in this life or the next. Therefore, one who has knowledge of the soul and how the soul transmigrates from one body to another does not pay attention to the body, which is nothing but a covering dress. Paṇḍitāḥ sama-darśinaḥ [Bg. 5.18]. Such a person sees the soul, which is part and parcel of the Supreme Lord. Therefore he is a sama-darśi, a learned person.

 

SB 9.1.33

 

It is the soul upon which the body grows. The soul is the same in the white Michael Jackson as it is in the black Michael Jackson. And as soon as the soul leaves the body, it is no longer changing. So whether it’s white or black doesn’t really make a difference. The successful yoga practitioner is able to perceive all living entities on equal spiritual platform due to his elevated consciousness.

 

The humble sage, by virtue of true knowledge, sees with equal vision a learned and gentle brāhmaṇa, a cow, an elephant, a dog and a dog-eater [outcaste] .

 

Bg 5.18

 

(to be continued...)

 

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Thu

07

Mar

2013

The Proof Of You Part 14

by purujit dasa

 

IT IS THE SAME BODY, IT IS ONLY GROWING

 

Along with arguments pro existence of the soul, there are many against it. A very frequent argument against the transmigration is that we’re actually not changing different bodies, but it is one body, which simply grows. Srila Prabhupada in this connection explains:

 

Generally, people who are attached to the bodily conception of life are so absorbed in materialism that it is almost impossible for them to understand that there is a transcendental body which is imperishable, full of knowledge and eternally blissful.

 

Bg. 4.10 purport

 

 

But let’s bring the example of a movie again. Movie actually doesn’t move. It’s just series of photographs projected at high speed on the screen. Take a look:

Here’s 10 pictures of a boy walking. These are all different pictures and if you ask people who are into animation, they will confirm that it’s quite a tedious work to draw them all.

 

Now, let’s check it out how it looks when you play them one after another in a sequence: 

 

That’s right. It looks alive!

 

Because the movie is so swift, we do not perceive the images separately anymore, but our attention is focused on the fluent movement they create altogether. In reality, there's no movement. Every image of the movie is still. The movement is an illusion, but because the technology is so wonderful, we become so captivated when we watch a movie in a theatre that sometimes we laugh, sigh, or even scream while watching it. Similarly, people, who are absorbed in bodily platform, have a difficulty to perceive the different forms in which the living force is passing through throughout his/her lifetime and thus mistake the various bodily forms in time as a whole and not as separate from each other. However when we say: "growing", "changes", "ages", “develops” etc. automatically we are supporting the differentiation. If it's the same body, it should be identical in every single aspect. Such is the definition of the word “same”. As soon as there's just a little tiny difference, it is a different body.

 

 

Guru-gaurāṅga: They also say that it is not... It is the same body, more or less...

Prabhupāda: Same body...

Guru-gaurāṅga: But it is just developed, but it is not a different body.

Prabhupāda: No. Developed means different body. Development means different body. They cannot say it is not different body. Then if it is not different, then go to childhood again.

 

Morning Walk

June 8, 1974, Geneva

 

It might be similar, but to say that the old man’s body is the same as the body we had in our childhood is simply a lack of sanity. If we wet our pants in our childhood people say it’s cute. We can hardly expect such reaction from people around us if we wet our pants now though. This is the point. And that body is changing every moment by the actions and reactions of the different cells is admitted even by modern medical science.

 

Dr. Singh. Medical science says that all the bodily cells are replaced every seven years.

Śrīla Prabhupāda. No, not every seven years—every second. Every second, the blood corpuscles are changing. Is it not so?

Dr. Singh. Yes.

Śrīla Prabhupāda. And as soon as the blood corpuscles change, you change your body.

 

Life Comes from Life

The Tenth Morning Walk:

May 14, 1973

 

 

I think there is no difficulty to understand this simple process. Now, the soul is there, and the body's transforming every moment, every moment, imperceptibly. Just like if you have seen some, some your friend's child small, and after five years, you go to that friend's house and see the child: "Oh, you have grown so big? You have grown so big." But the father, mother cannot see. Because they are seeing daily, they do not see that "How my child is growing, daily," but a man who comes all of a sudden after five years, he says, "Oh, the child is grown up."

 

Bhagavad-gītā 2.13

New York, March 11, 1966

 

Brahmānanda: Is a person reborn in the same body?

Prabhupāda: Yes, you are reborn every moment. You were like this child sometime. Is this body the same? You think your body is the same when you were a child like that, lying down on the lap of you mother? Is the same body?

Bernard Manischewitz: No, my body is different from a child's body.

Prabhupāda: Yes. So different body means you are changing body every moment, imperceptibly. That is the medical science.

Bernard Manischewitz: Can it sometimes be perceptibly? Can a person...?

Prabhupāda: Perceptibly we can understand that the body is being changed so long you are within this body. Because if the person, the soul, is not in the body, the body does not change. Body changes so long the soul is there. And as soon as the soul goes out of the body, there is no more change. Is it not perceptible?

Bernard Manischewitz: If the soul goes out of the body...

Prabhupāda: There is no more change. It remains the same. Same status. Why? That means so long the soul is there, changes take place.

 

Room Conversation

with Bernard Manischewitz

July 13, 1975, Philadelphia

 

 

(to be continued...)

 

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Thu

28

Feb

2013

The Proof Of You Part 13

by purujit dasa

 

ARE YOU A COMBINATION OF STOOL, BLOOD, URINE, BONES, MUSCLES?

 

If you’re still doubtful about the existence of the soul, then just ask yourself: am I a bag of stool, bones, marrow, blood and similar obnoxious things? Because that’s what the body is under the surface. We might see a beautiful person walking down the street, but in reality it’s just urine, stool, muscles, bones, intestines very nicely packaged by what we call “skin”.

 

Yasyātma-buddhiḥ kuṇape tri-dhātuke. This bag of bones and flesh and blood and urine and stool... This is the bag. This is body. What is this body? You dissect this body. You will find these things. You will find blood, muscles, bones, urine, stool and so many other things. Does it mean that such a great intelligent man is combination of urine, stool, blood, bone? So why don't you create another intelligent man with these ingredients?

 

Bhagavad-gītā 13.3 -- Hyderabad, April 19, 1974

 

(to be continued...)

 

2 Comments

Thu

21

Feb

2013

The Proof Of You Part 12

by purujit dasa

 

HOW COME THE WORD "ETERNITY" EXISTS?

 

Bahulāśva: This Professor Stahl, he was saying that his experience is that everything is changing and temporary. So therefore he was thinking that that is the nature of all things, that they are temporary.

Prabhupāda: Temporary, this (indistinct). Why this "temporary" word has come into existence unless there is the opposite, "eternal"? Why do you use this word, "temporary"? When you say, "It is fraud," and there must be something as honesty. Otherwise, why this "fraud" has come? Hm? We say, "This is light"—means there is something as darkness. This is relative world. The Professor Einstein said relativity. This is relative: as soon as there is darkness, there must be light. Otherwise, how you understand light and darkness? So unless there is eternity, how do you bring this word, "temporary"? What is their answer?

Bahulāśva: They have no answer.

Prabhupāda: Unless there is father, there is no meaning of the word son. Unless there is husband, there is no meaning of the word wife. This is the relative world, and they are accepting this relativity. So how they can deny? As soon as you "temporary" say, you must accept there is eternity.

 

Srila Prabhupada on a morning walk -- June 21, 1975, Los Angeles

 

(to be continued...)

 

 

 

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Thu

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Feb

2013

The Proof Of You Part 11

by purujit dasa

 

CONSERVATION OF ENERGY

 

Devotee (2): Actually by the law of conservation of energy reincarnation can be explained.

Prabhupāda: Yes.

Devotee (2): By their own law.

Prabhupāda: Yes.

Hṛdayānanda: Why shouldn't consciousness also be conserved?

Devotee (2): Consciousness is also energy.

Prabhupāda: Yes. Energy of the soul.

 

Srila Prabhupada on a Morning Walk December 4, 1973, Los Angeles

 

(to be continued)

 

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Feb

2013

The Proof Of You Part 10

by purujit dasa

 

BLOOD STREAM

 

yathā prakāśayaty ekaḥ

kṛtsnaṁ lokam imaṁ raviḥ

kṣetraṁ kṣetrī tathā kṛtsnaṁ

prakāśayati bhārata

 

O son of Bharata, as the sun alone illuminates all this universe, so does the living entity, one within the body, illuminate the entire body by consciousness.

 

Bg 13.34

 

There are various theories regarding consciousness. Here in Bhagavad-gītā the example of the sun and the sunshine is given. As the sun is situated in one place, but is illuminating the whole universe, so a small particle of spirit soul, although situated in the heart of this body, is illuminating the whole body by consciousness.

 

Bg 13.34 purport

 

The soul, according to the Vedic scriptures, is situated in the heart. From heart, blood is generated and blood spreads the consciousness all over the body. If I block the vein on my wrist, my hand becomes numb. So when the heart stops beating, the blood no longer distributes consciousness over the body and there’s death, or in other words, the body becomes numb forever. 

 

According to the Muṇḍaka Upaniṣad, this atomic soul is situated in the heart of every living entity, and because the measurement of the atomic soul is beyond the power of appreciation of the material scientists, some of them assert foolishly that there is no soul. The individual atomic soul is definitely there in the heart along with the Supersoul, and thus all the energies of bodily movement are emanating from this part of the body. The corpuscles which carry the oxygen from the lungs gather energy from the soul. When the soul passes away from this position, activity of the blood, generating fusion, ceases. Medical science accepts the importance of the red corpuscles, but it cannot ascertain that the source of the energy is the soul. Medical science, however, does admit that the heart is the seat of all energies of the body.

 

Bg 2.17

 

 

Guest (3) (Indian man): Where is soul?

Jagad-guru: He is asking where is the soul.

Prabhupāda: Can you see? So soul is within the heart. When the soul goes away you cannot explain what happened. You say, "heart failure." So why the heart failure? The nerves and the bones and the muscle and the blood, everything is there, and still, you say that "It stopped. Heart failure." So just like machine is running but somehow or other stopped, but you do not know what is the cause of stopping. The cause is that the heart, when it goes away, then the machine stops.

 

Morning Walk -- December 5, 1976, Hyderabad

 

(to be continued...)

 

2 Comments

Thu

31

Jan

2013

The Proof Of You Part 9

just like this bird cannot enjoy when his cage is cleansed, the soul cannot be happy simply by bodily pleasure
just like this bird cannot enjoy when his cage is cleansed, the soul cannot be happy simply by bodily pleasure

by purujit dasa
DISSATISFACTION WITH MATERIAL PLEASURE


Another example of how we are not this body is our feeling of dissatisfaction with bodily enjoyment. Whatever pleasure you take in this world is temporary, but because we are eternal, we are hankering after eternal pleasure. Just like, for example, you take nice food. You feel temporary satisfaction, but as soon as the pleasurable feeling is gone, again you are looking for another source of enjoyment –you want to take a nap, chat with a friend on a phone, check out how  another person likes your profile pic on Facebook, etc. In other words your hankering after pleasure is not over simply because you have satisfied your bodily need of hunger. The hankering is going on perpetually and that’s called life –always trying to enjoy something. The eternal hankering within us for pleasure is of the soul. 

 

Real enjoyment is when I am free from this embodiment of five elements, gross elements, and three subtle elements. I have entered into this, and the action and reaction of these five gross elements, three subtle elements, I am enjoying. Actually, not enjoying. This is called māyā. There is no enjoyment. It is enjoyment in the mind. The mind is also material creation. Real enjoyment is beyond these senses. Sukham ātyantikaṁ yat tad atīndriya-grāhyam [Bg. 6.21]. That is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā: sukham ātyantikaṁ yat tat. The real happiness is not by these gross senses. By transcendental senses, we can enjoy sukham āt..., real happiness. Therefore, because we are not in that platform of enjoying the transcendental senses, we are trying to enjoy by these gross senses, therefore we are becoming baffled and frustrated. This is the cause of frustration. Because that is not the platform of enjoyment.Sukham ātyantikaṁ yat tad atīndriya-grā... Atīndriya. Atīndriya means "beyond this." It is covered. Covered senses, you cannot enjoy. Suppose I cover your tongue with some cloth and then I give you one rasagullā. Can you taste it? What you'll taste? There are so many things. If you cover the senses, the real senses, and try to enjoy with that covering, what you'll enjoy? That is not enjoyment. 


Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 1.2.33 -- Vṛndāvana, November 12, 1972


(to be continued...)

 

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Thu

24

Jan

2013

The Proof Of You Part 8

by purujit dasa


DREAM BODY VS. AWAKE BODY


Many of us ask though: “If reincarnation is a reality, why don’t I remember my previous life?” And this is true. Besides some exceptional cases like a boy on Tv who speaks 100 foreign languages and knows how to drive an airplane at the same time, most of us do not have any memory whatsoever about anything which might have happened before we were born. If you ask yourself, what you did exactly at this particular time 1 year ago, it will be very hard to remember, what to speak of the last life? To answer this dilemma, we can say, that the fact we do not remember an event from the past does not necessarily mean that it never happened. For example your parents remember you as a tiny child, but you have forgotten all about it. That doesn’t mean you did not have a childhood. Similarly, we might have forgotten our previous life, but that doesn’t necessarily prove anything. Yes, you might say that from your childhood you can remember at least a few things, but there are people who got into a trauma or a similar condition where they suffered a complete memory loss and they don’t remember anything. So this is not an argument.We are actually having an experience of complete forgetfulness of our present body on daily basis. It’s called sleep.

 

One point in this connection is that at night when I am dreaming I forget this body. This body, in dream, I am seeing that I have gone in a different place, talking with different men, and my position is different. But at that time I don't remember that actually my body is lying on the bed in the apartment where I have come. But we don't remember this body. It is everyone's experience. Similarly, when you come again, awakening stage in the morning after getting up from the bed, I forget all the bodies I created in my dream. So which one is correct? This is correct? This body's correct, or that body's correct? Because at night I forget this body, and in daytime I forget the other dreaming body. So both of them not correct. It is simply hallucination. But I am correct because I see at night, I see in daytime. So I am eternal, the body is not eternal. This is the fact. Antavanta ime dehā nityasyoktāḥ śarīriṇaḥ [Bg. 2.18]. Śarīriṇaḥ, the owner of the body, is eternal, but not the body.
Bhagavad-gītā 2.28 -- London, August 30, 1973

When the body is annihilated, the soul and consciousness is not annihilated. Just like when we sleep, our consciousness works in a different body, subtle body: mind, intelligence and ego. That we have got experience every night. We sleep on our bed, but my consciousness goes to other country or other place, and work in a different way. Again, when at the end of the dream we come back to this body, gross body. So death means when the consciousness does not come back again to this gross body and enters another gross body. This period is called death. 
Bhagavad-gītā 2.13 -- Public Lecture With German Translation Throughout -- Hamburg, September 10, 1969
What is actually happening every night is that the soul temporarily leaves the gross body in its subtle body, which serves as a container. Then in the morning it comes back and we revive our memory. So, just like in sleeping condition when we forget our present gross body, at death we forget it but completely. As long as we’re not self-realized, we must identify either with the gross body, the subtle body in a dream, or the body we’ll have in our next life.  
One can experience the distinction between the subtle and gross bodies even daily; in a dream, one's gross body is lying on the bed while the subtle body carries the soul, the living entity, to another atmosphere. But because the gross body has to be continued, the subtle body comes back and settles in the present gross body. Therefore one has to become free from the subtle body also. This freedom is known as mukta-liṅga.

Sb 4.12.18

Suppose my father dies, if I have got clear understanding that "My father has not died. He has changed the body. He has accepted another body." That is the fact. Just like in our sleeping state, dreaming state, my body is lying on the bed, but in dream I create another body and go, say, thousand miles away in a different place. As you have got daily experience, similarly, the gross body being stopped, I, as spirit soul, I do not stop. I work. My mind carries me. My mind is active, my intelligence is active. People do not know that there is another subtle body made of mind, intelligence and ego. That carries me to another gross body. That is called transmigration of the soul.
Bhagavad-gītā 2.15 -- Hyderabad, November 21, 1972

Hanumān: In your books you say that the world is like a dream.Prabhupāda: Yes, it is dream.Hanumān: How is it a dream?Prabhupāda: Dream, just like last night you had some dream.Hanumān: Yes.Prabhupāda: Well, it has no value. It is gone. And again, this night, when you'll sleep, you'll forget all these things. You'll dream. You don't remember during night, when you are dreaming, that "I have got my house, I have got my wife I have..." You all forget. So it is dream.Hanumān: It is true or is not true?Prabhupāda: No, no. Where is true? You forget at night. Do you remember when you sleep that you have got your wife and you are sleeping on bed? You have gone some three thousand miles away and seeing something else. Do you remember that you have got a place to reside?Hanumān: No.Prabhupāda: So this is dream at night. And night dream, what you saw at night, that is now dream. So both of them dream. You are simply visitor. That's all. You are seeing this dream and that dream. You are, you are fact, but what you are seeing, that is dream.Hanumān: But I have the impression that "This is true, and my dream is not true." What is the dif...?Prabhupāda: No, no. Everything is untrue. How it is true? If it is true, why you forget at night? Why you forget? If it is true. Do you remember at night?Hanumān: No, I don't remember.Prabhupāda: Then? How it is true? As you don't remember the dreams which you saw last night..., That, therefore we say "dream." Similarly this thing, because you forget at night, this is also dream.Hanumān: But I have...Prabhupāda: This is day-dream, that is night-dream. That's all.Bahulāśva: Jaya. Day-dream and night-dream. And the night-dream, then you perceive that as being real.Prabhupāda: Eh?Bahulāśva: When you dream at night, then you think that is real.Prabhupāda: Yes. That is real. You cry... It is dream, but you are crying, "There is tiger, tiger, tiger!" Where is tiger? But you are seeing it is fact, tiger. "I am being killed by a tiger." But where is tiger. [break] ...in dream you are embracing some beautiful girl. Where is that beautiful girl? But actually this is happening.
Morning Walk -- January 9, 1974, Los Angeles
(to be continued...)

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Thu

17

Jan

2013

The Proof Of You Part 7

by purujit dasa

 

SYMPTOMS OF CONSCIOUSNESS

 

 

The body is subject to six kinds of transformations. It takes its birth in the womb of the mother's body, remains for some time, grows, produces some effects, gradually dwindles, and at last vanishes into oblivion.

 

Bg 2.20

 

The Vedic scriptures describe that although we cannot see the soul, we can still understand its presence in the body by certain symptoms. It is just like seeing smoke coming out of chimney in a distance. Although we cannot see it, by symptoms (the smoke) we are sure that there’s fire inside. Similarly, the soul’s presence in the body manifests as consciousness. And the presence of consciousness in turn can be verified by the above-mentioned symptoms. Let us discuss these in minute detail:

 

 

BIRTH

 

One of the common beliefs in the modern society is that life begins when material elements form a body, which later on develops consciousness. This is not a new theory and Lord Krsna mentions it in the Bhagavad-gita, while describing the nature of asuras, or those who are materialistically inclined:

 

They say that this world is unreal, that there is no foundation and that there is no God in control. It is produced of sex desire, and has no cause other than lust.

 

Bg 16.8

 

 

As explained previously, although they cannot prove it, materialistic scientists believe that life develops from a combination of father’s semina and the ovum of the mother. Many times, however, although parents do have an intercourse, there’s no pregnancy. The fact that such a situation (no pregnancy after intercourse) arises means that the intercourse cannot be the only cause of new life. The proponents of the life from matter theory at this point will assume that the living entity in the womb does not have a past. His consciousness simply arises all of a sudden by accident. This assumption however is lacking a solid reasoning when we carefully think about it. How is it possible that consciousness of the living entity at this point has no past? At every point in our life we have a past.  When we are teens, we have a past, when we’re adults we have a past and we have a past in our old age also. Things do not appear just like that all of a sudden, but have causes. How can our perception be an exception? We live in a relative world, where everything has its cause. A skyscraper is caused by a group of workers, a computer is made in a computer factory, a garden is cultivated by a gardener. Conceptions of sudden magical appearances are perhaps alluring for a child-like mind, but in reality have very little to do with science.

Without explaining how consciousness can appear just like that, out of nowhere, the scientists’ observation of the life phenomenon remains incomplete. The real scientist should not be satisfied with superficial information, but should try to get to the root of the problem. 

 

Dr. Singh. Śrīla Prabhupāda, the idea of chemical evolution came from a Russian biologist in 1920. He demonstrated that before biochemical evolution, the earth's atmosphere was in a state of reduction. In other words, it was mostly full of hydrogen, with very little oxygen. Then, in due course, the sun's radiation caused these hydrogen molecules to form into different chemicals.

Śrīla Prabhupāda. This is a side study. First of all, where did the hydrogen come from? The scientists simply study the middle of the process; they do not study the origin. We must know the beginning. There is an airplane. [indicates an airplane appearing on the horizon.] Would you say the origin of that machine is the sea? A foolish person might say that all of a sudden a light appeared in the sea, and that's how the airplane was created. But is that a scientific explanation? The scientists' explanations are similar. They say, "This existed, and then all of a sudden, by chance, that occurred." This is not science. Science means to explain the original cause.

 

Life Comes From Life:  Giving Credit to the Primal Creator

 

 

If the living entity has no past, how is it possible that there are so many varieties of circumstances where living entities are born into? Just consider that nowhere in the world we can find two exactly looking bodies. How come?

 

So these things are taking place daily within the womb of the mother—how the child is developing from the day of union of the father and the mother, and, on the first day, it is like a pealike form by the semina of father and mother, and then everything develops. Different types of body, different types of intelligence, different types of brain—how it takes place? If it is simply material, then all children would have come out of the same quality. But it does not so come. Every child, baby born, has got everything separate from the others. How subtle laws of nature is working, we can just imagine. It is not possible to understand by our these material senses even this material formation of the body, what to speak of spiritual understanding.

 

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 3.26.29

Bombay, January 6, 1975

 

 

For example someone is born in a very rich family, but someone is born poor. To say this is just an accident is not actually scientific. It is simply an excuse for not being able to answer. Just like in the past, the fanatical religionists would say: God did it, don‘t question. The scientists today say: It’s an accident. No one knows. If such a question cannot be answered though, the life comes from matter theory remains incomplete and a sensible man should not blindly accept it.

 

Lord Krsna in the Bhagavad-gita however is giving a more intricate explanation of the subject matter. He says:

 

Never was there a time when I did not exist, nor you, nor all these kings; nor in the future shall any of us cease to be.

 

Bg 2.12

 

For the soul there is never birth nor death. Nor, having once been, does he ever cease to be. He is unborn, eternal, ever-existing, undying and primeval. He is not slain when the body is slain.

 

Bg 2.20

 

Srila Prabhupada elaborates in the purport on this verse:

 

The body is subject to six kinds of transformations. It takes its birth in the womb of the mother's body, remains for some time, grows, produces some effects, gradually dwindles, and at last vanishes into oblivion. The soul, however, does not go through such changes. The soul is not born, but, because he takes on a material body, the body takes its birth. The soul does not take birth there, and the soul does not die. Anything which has birth also has death. And because the soul has no birth, he therefore has no past, present or future. He is eternal, ever-existing, and primeval—that is, there is no trace in history of his coming into being. Under the impression of the body, we seek the history of birth, etc., of the soul. The soul does not at any time become old, as the body does. The so-called old man, therefore, feels himself to be in the same spirit as in his childhood or youth. The changes of the body do not affect the soul.

 

Bg 2.20 purport

 

 

So birth applies only to the material body, not to the eternal soul. It is the symptom of the soul’s presence in the body. The Vedic literature explains that unless the spirit soul takes shelter of the father’s semina, it is not possible for body to develop. It is the life of the soul, which starts the whole process of growth and the body simply develops on the soul. The placement of the soul into a particular womb depends on the living entity’s previous karma, or activities and it is arranged under the supervision of the Supreme Lord.

 

Srimad Bhagavatam confirms this:

 

śrī bhagavān uvāca

karmaṇā daiva-netreṇa

jantur dehopapattaye

striyāḥ praviṣṭa udaraṁ

puṁso retaḥ-kaṇāśrayaḥ

 

The Personality of Godhead said: Under the supervision of the Supreme Lord and according to the result of his work, the living entity, the soul, is made to enter into the womb of a woman through the particle of male semina to assume a particular type of body.

 

(SB 3.31.1 first edition)

 

A man dies after it has been decided what form of body he will have in the next life. Higher authorities, not the living entity himself, make this decision. According to our activities in this life, we either rise or sink. This life is a preparation for the next life.

 

Bg-1972: introduction

 

Due to our limited experience in the material world, where everything we see is temporary, we have falsely developed a belief that the living entity itself must have a beginning and end just like everything else. But it does not.

 

Śrīla Prabhupāda. We have no quarrel with the chemists if they begin from life, but unfortunately they say that everything begins from darkness—dead matter. That is what we object to. We say, "Begin from life," and they say, "No, begin from matter—darkness." The reason they are in darkness is simple: if one goes from darkness to light, he thinks that darkness is the beginning. Suppose you have been in darkness all your life, and now you suddenly come into the light. You will think, "Oh, light has come from darkness." Actually, darkness occurs when light becomes dim. Darkness does not produce light.

Dr. Singh. Then darkness is dependent on light?

Śrīla Prabhupāda. Yes. Or in other words, in the light there is no darkness. When the light is dim—then we experience darkness. Similarly, when our spiritual consciousness, or Kṛṣṇa consciousness, is dim, our consciousness is material. In the morning we awaken, and at the end of the day we become tired and go to sleep. When life is somehow or other interrupted, we sleep. We sleep at night, and when we get up in the morning we understand that our wakefulness, or "life," has not come into existence from the sleepy condition. I was alive even while I slept, and on awakening I am still alive. This should be clearly understood. A baby comes from the womb of his mother. He thinks that his life has begun from the day he comes out of the womb. But that is not a fact. Actually, he is eternal. He constructed his material body within the womb of his mother while he was unconscious, and as soon as his bodily features were sufficiently developed, he came out of the womb and again to consciousness.

Dr. Singh. And he again falls asleep at death.

Śrīla Prabhupāda. Yes. That is described in Bhagavad-gītā (8.19):

 

bhūta-grāmaḥ sa evāyaṁ

bhūtvā bhūtvā pralīyate

rātry-āgame 'vaśaḥ pārtha

prabhavaty ahar-āgame

 

"Again and again the day comes, and this host of beings is active, and again night falls, O Pārtha, and they are helplessly dissolved."

 

Life Comes From Life "Everything Is One" Is Nonsense

 

 

 

GROWTH

 

The soul actually creates an inconceivable energy in the body. It is inconceivable to us, because we cannot explain it through any material law. Nothing material can grow. This inconceivable power makes our body grow though. As we already mentioned, if the cause of growth was simply material elements, why not supply them to the dead body and make it grow again? But that’s not possible.

 

There cannot be anything material without spiritual energy. What is this body? How this body came into existence? Because the spiritual energy, the soul, is there. A dead child born, it will not grow because the spiritual energy is not there.

 

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 1.7.28-29 -- Vṛndāvana, September 25, 1976

 

 

SUSTENANCE

 

Another symptom of consciousness in the body is the sustenance. This is also acintya-sakti, or inconceivable energy manifested. The body is just like a car. So long a car belongs to a proprietor, he takes nice care of it. He washes it, changes tires when it’s needed, etc. As soon as the owner buys a new car and dumps the old one, the old car slowly deteriorates. Just as a car’s maintenance is not possible without a person who maintains it, neither our body can be sustained without the presence of the spirit soul. It is due to the presence of the spirit soul all the digestion is working.

 

There are many mystic powers in the living entities. The cow eats grass and produces milk. Everyone knows this, but can you take some grass and produce milk? Can you? Therefore there is mystic power within the cow. As soon as the cow eats grass, she can transform it into milk. Men and women are basically the same, but as a man you cannot eat food and produce milk, although a woman can. These are mystic powers.

Dr. Singh. Scientists would say that there are different enzymes or chemicals inside different types of bodies and that these account for the cow's producing milk.

Śrīla Prabhupāda. Yes, but who produced those enzymes and that arrangement? That was done by mystic power. You cannot make these enzymes or that arrangement. You cannot produce milk from dry grass in your laboratory. Within your body, by mystic power, you can transform food into blood and tissue, but in your laboratory, without mystic power, you cannot even transform grass into milk. Therefore you must accept the existence of mystic power.

 

Life Comes From Life:  Chemicals from Mystic Power

 

CREATING BYPRODUCTS

 

Men produce children, animals cubs, seeds flowers. This is because they are alive. As soon as we fry the seed and thus kill the life in it, there will be no flower. Neither can we see dead couples conceiving children. Life comes from life.

 

Dr. Singh. One of the popular questions that arises when we start studying biology is "What is the difference between a living organism and that which is not living?" The textbooks say that the chief characteristics that distinguish the two are that a living being can move and reproduce, whereas dead matter can do neither. But the books never talk about the nature of the soul or about the consciousness of the living entity.

Śrīla Prabhupāda. But consciousness is the primary indication that life is present. Only because of consciousness can a living being move and reproduce.

 

Life Comes From Life: The Difference Between the Living and the Nonliving

 

 

DWINDLING

 

Dwindling, or ageing means that the soul will soon leave that particular body. If there was no soul in the body, there would be no ageing.

 

My body is changing, but I am not changing. For example, I am now an old man. Sometimes I think, "Oh, I used to jump and play, but now I cannot jump because my body has changed." I want to jump, but I cannot do it. That jumping propensity is eternal, but because of my old body I cannot do it.

 

Life Comes From Life: Changing Bodies

 

 

 

DEATH

 

Matter is eternal and this has been confirmed by materialistic scientists, who call it the law of preservation of energy. When we die, the elements which formed our body, namely water, earth, fire, air and ether do not disappear. They just transform into something else. Matter temporarily manifests in a particular form when the active principle enters. Our body manifests when the soul enters and it is dismantled as soon as the soul leaves, but the body by itself is always dead(insentient). The fact that the body dies and it is not possible to bring it back to life is a proof that the soul, or the active principle of life in the body, has left.

 

If you decorate a dead body, it may be very fanciful to the people, that "This dead body is decorated with costly garments and flowers and all things." So, but the dead body is dead. It is not enjoying. You can be complacent that "My father, the body of my father or my relative, is decorated so nicely." But factually, if you study scrutinizingly, what is the benefit out of this? What is the benefit? Dead body decoration? But people do that. They are accustomed to do that.

So similarly, this body is dead. That's a fact. It is dead from the very beginning. Because it is matter. Matter is always dead. So this body made of matter, bhūmir āpo 'nalo vāyuḥ [Bg. 7.4]—earth, water, fire, air. This external body is dead, but it is living on account of that small spark of spirit.

 

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 1.15.21 -- Los Angeles, December 1, 1973

 

(to be continued..)

 

 

0 Comments

Thu

10

Jan

2013

The Proof Of You Part 6

by purujit dasa

 

 Life Comes From Life

 

While the scientists are busy looking for evidence, if we simply look around, we see that life is coming from life. As opposed to irrational beliefs, this is a perceivable reality. A baby is conceived by living parents. An egg is produced by a living bird. A seed is given by a growing plant. Nowhere can we see a child being conceived by dead parents, seed being produced from a dead tree, etc. Such things belong to the world of imagination.

 

 

We can prove that life arises from life. For example, a father begets a child. The father is living, and the child is living. But where is their proof that a father can be a dead stone? Where is their proof? We can easily prove that life begins from life. And the original life is Kṛṣṇa. That also can be proven. But what evidence exists that a child is born of stone? They cannot actually prove that life comes from matter. They are leaving that aside for the future. [Laughter.]

 

Life Comes From Life :The Missing Link

 

 

Dr. Singh. The scientists argue that before Darwin's biophysical type of evolution could take place, there had to be what they call prebiotic chemistry, or chemical evolution.

Śrīla Prabhupāda. Yes. And the term "chemical evolution" means that chemicals have an origin, and that origin is spirit, or life. A lemon produces citric acid, and our bodies produce many chemicals in urine, blood, and bodily secretions. This is proof that life produces chemicals, not that chemicals produce life.

 

Life Comes From Life:  The Origin of the Interplanetary Gases

 

Even in our present experience we can know that nothing is generated from inert matter, but inert matter can be generated from the living entity. For instance, by contact with the living entity, the material body develops into a working machine. Men with a poor fund of knowledge mistake the bodily machinery to be the living being, but the fact is that the living being is the basis of the bodily machine. The bodily machine is useless as soon as the living spark is away from it.

 

SB 1972 introduction

 

      (to be continued...)

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Thu

03

Jan

2013

The Proof Of You Part 5

by purujit dasa

 

INJECT THE MISSING CHEMICAL

 

Śrīla Prabhupāda. The gardeners supply water to the green trees, so why don't they supply water to this dead tree and make it green?

Dr. Singh. From experience they know that it will not grow.

Śrīla Prabhupāda. Then what is the element that is lacking? Scientists say that chemicals are the cause of life, but all the chemicals that were present when the tree was alive are still there. And these chemicals are still supporting the lives of many living entities such as microbes and insects. So they cannot say that life energy is lacking in the body of the tree. The life energy is there.

 

(Life Comes from life:The Individual Living Force)

 

This is a very powerful argument, when you think about it deeply. If you ask scientists what is the cause of life, if they’re not humble enough to admit that they don’t know yet, they will say something like: “It’s the reaction of such and such chemical with such and such chemical and because the chemical is no longer there, there’s no life anymore.” Just like so many people say, when challenged by the science of soul: “We’re not the body. That’s nice, but if we don’t feed the body, we will die!” But that’s foolishness. If the food or chemical was the cause of life, then we could go on living forever. Just before dying, we would simply take a sandwich and everything would be fine. 

 

Prabhupāda: People die even if he has got many things to eat, still he dies. Can you check it? That does not depend on eating. There are many men. They are dying. Although they are...

Mr. Wadell: I am taking you too literally. Let us forget about that point. It's not worthwhile.

Prabhupāda: No, no, because you say, "They are dying, God is not supplying," that is a mistaken idea. God is supplying. God is supplying. He is dying natural death. It is not that because there is want of supply, therefore he is dying. That is a mistaken idea. Death is not dependent on supply of food. There are so many other causes.

 

Conversation with Mr. Wadell -- July 10, 1973, London

 

Now, someone may say: “It’s not just eating. It’s the sun, the tissues of the body, so many things.” But if that is the case, why can’t you just supply whatever is needed and make a dead person alive again?

 

There are so many arguments. Now, if you say "This body's dead because the blood has become white. Blood corpuscles, they are now become white instead of becoming red." So if that is the possible, so why don't you make the blood red? By some chemical injection or by adding some color, as soon as the blood becomes red... Why don't you do that? No. If you say "That was 'natural' redness. That natural redness cannot be brought," then your science is defective. And even if we accept that natural redness is the cause of living force, there are many natural redness in the flower, in the jewels. Why does it not move?

 

Bhagavad-gītā 2.17 -- Hyderabad, November 22, 1972

 

In other words, if the cause of life is matter, then prove it. Replace the blood, make it red again, replace the bones, replace the heart, replace the muscles, replace the skin, basically replace all the organs so that a person can live on. Although appearing as science and a fact, when we push for such a proof, the scientists are silent. They are either working on it, or they say that the science has not come to that stage yet. But if you’re not able to do it now, then the claim that life comes from matter is nothing but faith, which we tend to think science is not.  

 

 (to be continued...)

 

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Fri

28

Dec

2012

The Proof Of You Part 4

by purujit dasa

 

MY HEAD, MY ARM, MY LEG

 

Dehī means the possessor of this body. I am not this body. If you ask me, "What..." Just like sometimes we ask the child, "What is this?" He will say, "It is my head." Similarly, if you ask me also, anyone, "What is this?" Anyone will say, "It is my head." Nobody will say, "I head." So if you scrutinizingly analyze all parts of the body, you'll say, "It is my head, my hand, my finger, my leg," but where is "I"? "My" is spoken when there is "I." But we have no information of the "I." We have simply information of "my." That is called ignorance.

 

Bhagavad-gītā 2.11 -- Edinburgh, July 16, 1972

 

One can perceive one’s self-identification and feel positively that he exists. He may not feel it very abruptly, but by using a little intelligence, he can feel that he is not the body. He can feel that the hand, the leg, the head, the hair and the limbs are all his bodily parts and parcels, but as such the hand, the leg, the head, etc., cannot be identified with his self. Therefore just by using intelligence he can distinguish and separate his self from other things that he sees.

 

SB 1972 2.2.35 purport

 

Puṣṭa-kṛṣṇa: Let's say if your hand is cut off, and it's lying there. Why is it that you are not conscious of that hand? (French)

Pṛthu Putra: Because the nerves are just cut.

Prabhupāda: No, no, if the body and the hand is the same, when it is cut, then it is lying down on the floor. So why there is no consciousness. His question is very intelligent.

Deshimaru: Because the hand is cut.

Prabhupāda: But it is hand. Why there is no consciousness?

Karandhara: It's part of the body. It should have its own consciousness if the body and consciousness is the same.

Prabhupāda: You say the consciousness and body is the same. So when it is cut, why there is no consciousness? Therefore the body is different from consciousness.

 

Room Conversation with Mr. Deshimaru -- June 13, 1974, Paris

 

(to be continued...)

 

 

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Thu

20

Dec

2012

The Proof Of You Part 3

by purujit dasa

 

FEAR OF DEATH

 

A very common viewpoint about life after death is that well…that it simply does not exist. You are born, you live, have fun and then one day you just die and that’s it. No questions asked. After death, there’s nothing. This is not a new idea though. Such conception of nothingness has been proposed in the teachings of Lord Buddha some 2600 years ago. Moreover, from the Bhagavad-gita, we understand that the theory was present even before and was propounded by philosophers known as Lokāyatikas and Vaibhāṣikas. Krsna has however addressed it in the following way:

 

atha cainaṁ nitya-jātaṁ

nityaṁ vā manyase mṛtam

tathāpi tvaṁ mahā-bāho

nainaṁ śocitum arhasi

 

If, however, you think that the soul is perpetually born and always dies, still you have no reason to lament, O mighty-armed.

 

Bg 2.26

 

Srila Prabhupada in his commentary on this verse writes:

 

Even if Arjuna did not believe in the existence of the soul—as in the Vaibhāṣika philosophy—there would still have been no cause for lamentation. No one laments the loss of a certain bulk of chemicals and stops discharging his prescribed duty. On the other hand, in modern science and scientific warfare, so many tons of chemicals are wasted for achieving victory over the enemy. According to the Vaibhāṣika philosophy, the so-called soul or ātmā vanishes along with the deterioration of the body. So, in any case, whether Arjuna accepted the Vedic conclusion that there is an atomic soul, or whether he did not believe in the existence of the soul, he had no reason to lament.

 

Bg 2.26 purport

 

In other words, if we’re just matter without soul, the question we need to answer is that why we are afraid of death? Why is death uncomfortable? And why are we lamenting?

The modern trend is that people like to pretend to be detached from death and proclaim: Death is just part of life. Accept it and be peaceful. Be positive. However, their very life is based on fear of death. They are spending so much time working in order to get money so they can keep the body going by supplying food, giving it shelter, clothes to protect it from cold and so on. If death is ok, why are they spending so much time for protection of the body?  Neither they can explain, why do we need to give up fear of death in the first place. If death is just a part of life, a peaceful process, where is this so-called illusion of “being afraid” of death coming from? How come we’re not born with such “detachment” from the very beginning of our lives?

 

Rāmeśvara: They say it is impossible for any man to know what will happen to him after death. It is not possible, so why think about it?

Prabhupāda: But after all, there is death. So why you are afraid of death? Why you do not die peacefully? Why you protest against death? Huh? If I want to kill you, will you peacefully die?

Rāmeśvara: No.

Prabhupāda: Why you scream? Why don't you want to die?

Rāmeśvara: Give up my life, my body?

Prabhupāda: Why you are so much attached to live? That is the question. Now die, "I'm dying, let me die." Why you protest? That means your nature is that you shall live. But you are being interrupted by death. That is the...

 

 

Morning Walk -- July 11, 1976, New York

 

Therefore if anyone says that he does not mind death, let him first of all explain why he is spending so much time protecting the body from discomfort. Why he just does not let go of all care for the body and die peacefully?

 

 

Bahulāśva: I was speaking with Professor Stahl about this point in Berkeley. And he also had no answers for this question. He thought that there was no such thing as eternal life.

Prabhupāda: Well, then, therefore you are a rascal. Then why you are struggling to live? Why, when you are sick, why do you call doctor, physician? Why this tendency? Why you are making research in medical science, opening hospital? Die. Why you are not willing to die? Then what is the answer? He says, "There is no such thing as eternity," but why you are struggling for eternity? Then what is the answer? Hmm?

Bahulāśva: Well, when we tell them your philosophy, Śrīla Prabhupāda, he became silent. The one... We were having a debate, and the one chairman of the debate, he then he turned to Mr. Stahl. He said, "So what do you think of this answer, Mr. Philosopher?" And Mr. Stahl just sat there very quiet. He couldn't say anything.

Prabhupāda: (chuckles) Everyone is trying to live. That is Darwin's theory also, "struggle for existence." So why you are trying to exist if there is no such thing?

Satsvarūpa: Well, they say, "We don't mind if we're not eternal, but we want to live as long as possible."

Prabhupāda: Why? That is my question. Why? Why this tendency?

 

Morning Walk -- June 21, 1975, Los Angeles

 

The tendency is here, because we’re eternal. Just like a fish taken out of water is trying to swim on the beach, a conditioned soul in the material existence is struggling to live for eternity.

 

Not only Arjuna, but every one of us is full of anxieties because of this material existence. Our very existence is in the atmosphere of nonexistence. Actually we are not meant to be threatened by nonexistence. Our existence is eternal. But somehow or other we are put into asat. Asat refers to that which does not exist.

 

Bg-1972: introduction

 

(to be continued...)

 

 

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Thu

13

Dec

2012

The Proof Of You Part 2

by purujit dasa

 

My father is gone. Or is he?

 

 

suyajño nanv ayaṁśete

mūḍhā yam anuśocatha

yaḥ śrotā yo 'nuvakteha

sa na dṛśyeta karhicit

 

Yamarāja continued: O lamenters, you are all fools! The person named Suyajña, for whom you lament, is still lying before you and has not gone anywhere. Then what is the cause for your lamentation? Previously he heard you and replied to you, but now, not finding him, you are lamenting. This is contradictory behavior, for you have never actually seen the person within the body who heard you and replied. There is no need for your lamentation, for the body you have always seen is lying here.

 

SB 7.2.44

 

This is an excerpt from yet another Vedic literature called the Srimad Bhagavatam. Yamaraja is here talking to a group of relatives of a deceased Suyajna for whom they lament. Let’s imagine a situation like that, when a person dies. It takes what… a mere moment? Utmost a few seconds and then it’s finished. He’s a goner. Now what do we see? A dead body lying on a bed, right? Now, take a remote and rewind this movie one second before he died. Take a snapshot. Cool. Keep it. Now let’s go one second forward. This is where he already died. Take another snapshot. Great. Now, what you have are two situations. Snapshot one is the living body. Snapshot two is the dead body. If the life is a mere combination of chemicals, what makes the difference between snapshot one and snapshot two?

 

Mike Robinson: Suppose we assume that a human being has no soul...

Śrīla Prabhupāda: Then you must explain the difference between a living body and a dead body. I have already explained this at the beginning. As soon as the living force, the soul, is gone from the body, even the most beautiful body has no value. No one cares for it; it's thrown away. But now, if I touch your hair, there will be a fight. That is the distinction between a living body and a dead body. In a living body the soul is there, and in a dead body the soul is not there. As soon as the soul leaves the body, the body has no value. It is useless. This is very simple to understand, but even the biggest so-called scientists and philosophers are too dullheaded to understand it. Modern society is in a very abominable condition. There is no man with a real brain.

 

SSR 1d: Reincarnation and Beyond

 

If you analyze yourself silently, "What I am? I am this finger? I am this body? I am this hair?" you'll deny, "No I am not this." So beyond this body, what is, that is spiritual. That we can feel. Similarly, as we cannot find our self within this matter, although I'm here, that we can distinguish, the distinction between dead body and living body, something minus. That something is spirit.

 

Bhagavad-gītā 8.21-22 -- New York, November 19, 1966

 

If there’s no soul and everything is matter, why are we discriminating between dead and living? Is such discrimination illusion? Why not then wake up from it and release all the murderers(who killed a so-called living body) from prisons, cancel off medical science(which is supposed to keep the body “alive”), stop caring about our body altogether and commit suicide? If we think, we’re just the body, why not wine and dine with a corpse? Cuz that’s what the body is, right? Take for example a person, who died a few seconds ago. All the chemical elements of his body are still present. His organs, his ears, his eyes, his tongue, his brain, his heart –everything of the body is there.

 

Suppose my father has died. Now I am crying, "Oh, my father is gone. My father is gone." But if somebody says, "Why do you say your father is gone? He is lying here. Why you are crying?" "No, no, no, that is his body. That is his body. My father is gone." Therefore in our present calculation I am seeing your body, you are seeing my body, nobody is seeing the actual person. After death, he comes to sense: "Oh, it is not my father; it is my father's body." You see? So we become intelligent after death. And while we are living, we are in ignorance. This is the modern civilization. While living... Just like people have insurance policy to get some money. So that money is received after death, not during life. Sometimes during life also. So my point is that so long we are living, we are in ignorance. We do not know "What is my father, what is my brother, what I am." But everyone is under the impression, "This body is my father, this body is my child, this body is my wife." This is called ignorance. If you study the whole world, during living time everyone will say that "I am Englishman," "I am Indian," "I am Hindu," "I am Muslim." But if you ask him, "Actually are you so?" That... Because this body is Hindu, Muslim, or Christian, because by accident the body is produced in a society of Hindu, Muslim, or the body is born in a particular country, therefore we say, "I am Indian, "I am European," "I am this," "I am that." But when the body is dead, at that time we say, "No, no, the person which was within the body, that is gone. It is a different thing."

Just try to understand how much ignorant we are. We are all in ignorance. This education is wanted because people, by this ignorance, they're fighting with one another. One nation is fighting with another, one religionist is fighting with another religionist. But it is all based on ignorance. I am not this body.

 

Bhagavad-gītā 2.11 -- Edinburgh, July 16, 1972

 

 

Srila Prabhupada urges people to realize: “we are all in ignorance”. On daily basis we are dealing with our lovers, friends, parents, children, yet we never come in contact with them truly. All we are interacting with is their bodies. In such a hallucinatory state, on the basis of such bodily conception we are very enthusiastically starting wars and ugly creatures like racism, sexism, nationalism, religious discrimination, speciesm are sprouting like mushrooms after rain. But the body is dead. Always. It only appears alive when the spirit soul is occupying it. It is just like a car. A car never moves on its own accord. It’s only when the driver gets in, starts the engine and drives off when you realize that the Knight Rider was just a Tv show and that your car has just been stolen.

 

(to be continued...)

 

 

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Wed

05

Dec

2012

The Proof Of You Part 1

by purujit dasa

 

Introduction

 

Individuality has always been a pin prick in the eyes of dictators. It is easier to manipulate inert matter with no feelings than a sentient being endowed with free will. If the masses are impersonalized, control is smooth. A great propaganda is therefore being made to support a so-called scientific research, whose aim is to establish that individuality does not really exist. The pseudo scientists proclaim that what you perceive as “you” is simply a reaction of chemicals. In other words, we are simply products of matter and therefore in essence we are one non-differentiated mass. The illusory conception of who we are is nothing but result of conditioning around us and as soon as our body dies, such illusion evaporates into oblivion and “you” become again one with the rest of matter.

Although many Nobel Prizes were given out and many claps have been received for the above mentioned theory, we are still in darkness as how the homogeneous matter could create an illusion of separated individual existence. When we speak of illusion, it must be derived from reality. For example, if we know how a snake looks like, we can have an illusion of seeing a snake in the darkness. If we don’t know how a snake looks like, how can we have an illusion of seeing one? Similarly, we can ask if all that exists is one all-pervading matter and nothing else, where is the temporary illusion of individuality coming from?

The materialistic scientists’ silence at this point speaks for itself and while they are busy coming up with yet another edition of scientific jargon to camouflage their gross ignorance on the subject, we dare to say that “you” do exist and there’s also an empirical proof to support it –your own perception. While being busy looking for evidence of “you” outside here and there in chemicals, mathematics, or microscopes, it is the closest thing-our own consciousness. It is because of consciousness you are for example able to read this article. Your consciousness is the perceivable evidence that individuality separate from what you are reading exists. The question therefore is not whether individuality exists, but quite the opposite, why it should not? Where is the evidence that it does not exist?

We wonder why modern man wants to deny his existing. Why does he constantly doubt such an obvious fact? The answer is that his consciousness is presently adulterated by various dogmatic beliefs, which keep him so to speak apart from his own self. These various irrational beliefs influence his perception to such an extent that he ends up perceiving the world around him in a distorted way. Just like in the Middle Ages, he has given up on his discriminative powers and let the so-called scientists, who are nothing but a mere replacement of a dogmatic church in disguise tell him what to think. The so-called scientific conclusions are firmly based on the observations made through imperfect senses of imperfect human beings.  For example, although the sun is a globe, from the position we’re in right now, we perceive it as a yellow disc. The sun is a globe though, so we see the sun as something completely different from what it really is. Such a faulty conclusion is due to our blindly believing the dictation of our imperfect eye-sight. Our eye-sight just as all the other senses are by their very essence limited though. The scientist however persists that unless a phenomenon can be seen by such limited sense perception, it cannot be accepted as a fact. He can be compared to a fool who, while wearing non-transparent glasses complains about insufficient evidence of the existence of seeing ability. Although his so-called objective scientific conclusions are relative on account of his relative perception and are therefore always changing, ignorance of such a crucial point, namely that his perception is distorted makes all his science completely subjective.

 

 

Puṣṭa-kṛṣṇa: This is the scientist's point of view. He's just observing, observing, observing, and therefore he feels almost left out of it. So they want to participate. They're very attracted to the...

Prabhupāda: But he's observing himself or not? Or he's simply observing outside himself?

Puṣṭa-kṛṣṇa: Bhagavad-gītā says that he is observing his body, his field of activities.

Prabhupāda: No, Bhagavad-gītā... I am asking...

Puṣṭa-kṛṣṇa: He's observing outside of himself.

Prabhupāda: Then why does he not observe himself, that "What I am?" "Am I this body? Or what I am? Why I am full of anxieties?"

 

Room Conversation with Robert Gouiran, Nuclear Physicist from European Center for Nuclear Research -- June 5, 1974, Geneva

 

 

Our perception is constantly being conditioned by the ever-changing workings of nature. This conditioning is the root cause of why we develop so many irrational conclusions in regards to the nature of the self. The real science of the soul therefore is not a question of believing an imposed dogma, but quite the opposite, it means to get free from all sorts of irrational beliefs based on imperfect sense perception and come to our original unadulterated consciousness, or Krsna consciousness.  Only then, will we be able to see things as they are and thus begin a truly scientific study. The aim of this article is therefore to map various misconceptions concerning the existence of the soul, scientifically point out their flaws based on logic and arguments and establish “you” to be an irrevocable fact based on what you truly perceive.

 

 

Bhagavad-gita: Superior Scientific Tradition

 

5000 years ago, one of the greatest world wars ever is taking place on earth. Arjuna is an ancient Vedic fighter (ksatriya) and one of the prominent personalities on the side of Pandavas, one of the great dynasties which rule the world. Pandavas and Kurus belong to the same family, but because the Kurus made some tricky cheating tactics, the Pandavas were kicked out of the kingdom and had to learn to manage on their own. Now, the time came to set the score straight. Krsna, who is recognized by countless Vedic statements to be the Supreme Personality of Godhead, arranged it like this in order to teach the world the sublime teachings of transcendental knowledge. Although Krsna is the Supreme controller of everything, He takes pleasure in directly taking part in the happenings of His creation and thus during the battle of Kuruksetra He volunteers to act as a charioteer for His friend Arjuna. Arjuna hesitates to fight against his former family members considering it to be immoral and is in great distress about what to do. Krsna however explains that for the soul there’s no death, so there’s no need of worrying. Our body is just like a costume and we play different roles in this material world according to the costume we wear–sometimes as friends, sometimes as enemies and the more we identify with them, the more we become entangled in the illusory reality of material existence. However, as soon as we come out of such bodily conception through the practice of yoga, our original self will manifest. This true self is free and blissful and eternally a part of the Supreme Absolute Whole(Krsna). These are some of the fundamental topics of the sublime, mind-expanding and timelessly deep literature named the Bhagavad-gita(Song of God) and in it we can find the most fascinating and the most elaborate explanation on the topic of consciousness known to man. His Divine Grace A.C.Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada(or shortly Srila Prabhupada), who is the last link to the ancient succession of gurus, through which this knowledge has been passed down since the time when Krsna and Arjuna spoke together on the battlefield of Kuruksetra 5000 years ago, has elaborately discussed on the Bhagavad-gita and on the subject matter of the soul in his numerous authorized Vedic translations, lectures, letters and conversations.  We will attempt to bring you a summary of the wonderful arguments he has presented to the materialistic men, and you are invited to kindly study them with patience, scrutiny, critical analysis and an open mind.   

 

Reincarnation 24 hours a day

 

After you open the Bhagavad-gita As It Is and notice the beautiful artwork done by American disciples of Srila Prabhupada, you may as well start reading it. First out of curiosity, later out of great interest and finally out of intense desire to grasp its meaning fully verse by verse. Although nothing can match its unbeatable logic, the arguments given seem quite simple at first sight. Sri Krsna for example states in the Second Chapter:

 

dehino ’smin yathā dehe

kaumāraṁyauvanaṁ jarā

tathā dehāntara-prāptir

dhīras tatra na muhyati

 

"As the embodied soul continually passes, in this body, from boyhood to youth to old age, the soul similarly passes into another body at death. The self-realized soul is not bewildered by such a change."

 

Bg.2.13

 

In the above mentioned verse, it is said that during one’s lifetime the body is going through transformation. No one can deny, in the beginning, we had a body of a small baby, then a body of a child, teenager, grown up body and we will have an old body in due course. This is not a belief, but a fact, which can also be perceivable by our senses. Yet, although our body is going through all these transformations, we ourselves do not change. The body changes, the mind changes, the intelligence changes, our sense of identity changes, but the primal you, the observer of all these changes remains unaffected. Just like in cinema, there is a distinction between a viewer (the observer) and the screen (the observed). Although, the images on the screen change, for example, there's a scene, where someone is chasing the main character, then all of a sudden cut and we see a woman feeding pigeons in a completely different setting, we are able to put the otherwise non-related images into context because we are the viewer and it is called a movie. The chase scene and the feeding scene are two different situations and have hardly anything in common, but because we are watching it from an objective standpoint, we are able to understand the context in which the two scenes are working together in the narrative. We might know for example that the woman, who is feeding the pigeons, is the main character’s aunt Tonya, who just killed the main character’s wife.  The two non-related looking scenes connect in our mind and that is the whole excitement of watching a movie.

Similarly, the body of an infant and a body of an old man are two fundamentally different bodies. A child has a tiny body and speaks goo-goo ga-ga, wears diapers, walks on four. An old man has a walking stick, wrinkled skin, hunch back perhaps. But because the observer in the body is the same, he has the opportunity to watch perhaps the most realistic movie ever. It’s called “life”. If he had been changing along with his body, such an experience would not have been possible.

 

 

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Thu

08

Nov

2012

The Proof of the Vedas Part 15

by purujit dasa

 

SUPERSOUL


So it is not a question of verifying the source. The verifying mentality itself is the proof of our stubborn blind faith in our limited perception. It is a question of developing a genuine desire to get to know the Complete Whole and our relationship with Him seriously. The Complete Whole, Krsna then from within will guide us to come in contact with the perfect knowledge, perfect guru and perfect association.  

 

sarvasya cāhaṁ hṛdi sanniviṣṭomattaḥ smṛtir jñānam apohanaṁ ca

 

I am seated in everyone's heart, and from Me come remembrance, knowledge and forgetfulness.

 

Bg 15.15

 

īśvaraḥ sarva-bhūtānāṁhṛd-deśe 'rjuna tiṣṭhatibhrāmayan sarva-bhūtāniyantrārūḍhāni māyayā

 

The Supreme Lord is situated in everyone's heart, O Arjuna, and is directing the wanderings of all living entities, who are seated as on a machine, made of the material energy.
Bg 18.61

 

If we become serious about getting out of ignorance and understand the Complete Whole, Krsna Himself will put us in contact with the bona fide Vedic authority coming in the disciplic succession. And if we still want to remain in darkness then he will put us into contact with a nonsense so-called authority, so we can get cheated.  So we just need to become serious. That’s all. 

 

ye yathā māṁ prapadyantetāṁs tathaiva bhajāmy ahammama vartmānuvartantemanuṣyāḥ pārtha sarvaśaḥ

All of them-as they surrender unto Me-I reward accordingly. Everyone follows My path in all respects, O son of Pṛthā.

 

Bg 4.11

 

Bali Mardana: If someone is actually sincere, can he be cheated or will he always get a bona fide guru?Prabhupāda: No, if he is sincere he'll get. Yes. Guru-kṛṣṇa-kṛpāya pāya bhakti-latā-bīja [Cc. Madhya 19.151]. Guru and Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is within you. As soon as He sees that you are sincere, He'll give you the right person.Bali Mardana: So if you are not completely sincere, you might get a Guru Maharaji.Prabhupāda: Huh?Bali Mardana: If you're not completely sincere, you might get someone else.Prabhupāda: Yes. Because you want to be cheated, you go to the cheater. That's all. Ye yathā māṁ prapadyante tāṁs tathaiva bhajāmy aham [Bg. 4.11]. Kṛṣṇa is intelligent, superintelligent. If you are a cheater, He'll cheat you. He'll cheat you. First-class cheat, Kṛṣṇa. But if you're actually sincere, then He'll give you the right thing. That is stated in the Bhag..., mattaḥ smṛtir jñānam apohanaṁ ca: [Bg. 15.15] "Everything is coming from Me: smṛtiḥ, remembrance, and forgetfulness." If you are a cheater, Kṛṣṇa will give you such intelligence, you'll forget Kṛṣṇa forever.

 

Morning Walk -- December 7, 1973, Los Angeles

We simply have to desire the right thing. And that is the beginning of our freedom. 

 

THE END

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Thu

01

Nov

2012

The Proof Of The Vedas Part 14

by purujit dasa

 

THE PROOF OF THE VEDAS

 

The gurus might be in agreement, but how do we know that the scriptures are bona fide? Although very proud of their so-called knowledge people in general do not know anything about the Complete Whole. If we ask a regular person what is the form of God, what is His name, what is He doing, what kind of foodstuff He likes, and what is our relationship with Him, he cannot answer any of these.  For this kind of info, we have to approach the authorized Vedic literatures such as the Bhagavad-gita and Srimad Bhagavatam. These are the only scriptures on the subject matter. It is not that there are many options to choose from. It comes back to the same point: if you’re truly looking for answers, why don’t you hear them out when they are presented to you?

 

Dr. Judah: We know about God, but we do not know God. I would agree.

Prabhupāda: Then that is theosophist. Theosophists, they are thinking there is something superior. But who is that superior, they are searching out. The same thing: a boy, he knows, "I have a father," but "Who is my father? That I do not know." Oh, that, you have to ask your mother. That's all." Alone he cannot understand. So our proposition is that if you do not know God and here is God, Kṛṣṇa, why don't you accept Him? You do not know first of all. And if I present, "Here is God," then why don't you accept? What is the answer? We are presenting God, "Here is God." And big, big ācāryas have accepted. Rāmānujācārya, Madhvācārya, Viṣṇu Svāmī, Lord Caitanya, in our disciplic succession my Guru Mahārāja, and I am preaching, "This is God." I am not presenting a God whimsically. I am presenting a God who is recognized. So why don't you accept? What is the difficulty?

 

Dr. Judah: I suppose one of the difficulties for certainly many in the older generation is that we follow certain patterns of life and the... It is difficult to change. This is the great problem.

Prabhupāda: Then you are not serious about God. Then you are not serious. Therefore Kṛṣṇa said, sarva-dharmān parityaja mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ: "You have to give up."

Dr. Judah: That's right.

Prabhupāda: Because if you are not prepared to give up, then you cannot accept God.

Dr. Pore: I think you're being a little unfair to Dr. Crossley. I think what you say is true, that the most important thing we can do is to seek and know God, but I don't think it's right to say that it's a bad thing to study how other people or how man has...

Prabhupāda: No, I don't say bad thing. I say if you are serious about God, now, here is God.

Dr. Pore: That's what a university in part is for, to study about how people have thought on different matters.

Prabhupāda: No, that's all right. I have already said. If you are seeking after something, if you get that something, why don't you accept it?

 

Garden Conversation with Professors -- June 24, 1975, Los Angeles

 

Just like scientists who superficially research matter without going deep and asking who the creator is, similarly there are people who perform various religious rituals but do not understand that the essence of religion is to actually find who God is and how to love Him. Faith in God is a good beginning, but in order to achieve perfection of human form, they should now approach the subject matter of God scientifically. 

 

(to be continued)

 

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Thu

25

Oct

2012

The Proof of the Vedas Part 13

by purujit dasa

 

THE PROOF OF A SINCERE DISCIPLE

 

Coming back to the hypocritical cheater smoker doctor –he can be compared to a bogus guru. Bogus guru selects from the perfect knowledge whatever attracts his bogus disciples and whatever doesn’t he leaves behind. People in general are not fond of serving God only, therefore if someone comes up with a new teaching with the promise of spiritual life, which does not require any endeavor on the part of the follower, many thousands gather to get cheated.

Therefore the proof of our hearing submissively must also manifest practically. If we hear from the spiritual master about the devotional service but never engage in devotional service, we don’t really understand what the spiritual master says. It is just like playing a musical instrument. You can learn the theory and the notes, but unless you grab a guitar and play, your knowledge of guitar playing is not complete. The guru is ultimately engaging us in the service to the Complete Whole. We may inquire from the guru as much as we want and we may even have a theoretical understanding of the Complete Whole, but it is only by service the knowledge becomes revealed.

 

“One can understand the Supreme Personality as He is only by devotional service.”

 

Bg 18.55.

 

 

Inquiries must be there. But inquiry, how inquiry? Not to challenge. Inquiry, not that "Oh, I shall see what kind of spiritual master he is. Let me challenge him and put some irrelevant questions and talk nonsensically, this way and that way." Oh, that will not make... Inquiry on the point. Paripraśna means inquiry on the point, and that inquiry should be sevā.

Sevā means service. Not that "Oh, I have inquired so many things from such and such person. Oh, I have not rendered any payment or any service, so I have gained." No. Without service, your inquiry will be futile.

 

Bhagavad-gītā 4.34 -- New York, August 14, 1966

 

Liberated means one who understands that he is not this material body—he is liberated. But that much knowledge is not sufficient. One must act according to that. Just like one is cured of the feverish condition. One was suffering some fever; now there is no fever. That's nice. But that is called convalescent stage. In the convalescent stage, if we do not take care nicely, again the fever may be relapse. That is marginal stage. We must come this side or that side. So even if we are liberated, if we are not engaged in the activities of liberation, then we are to be considered on the marginal stage. And marginal stage means we may fall down in this material condition. Āruhya kṛcchreṇa paraṁ padaṁ tataḥ patanty adho 'nādṛta-yuṣmad-aṅghrayaḥ [SB 10.2.32]. Āruhya kṛcchreṇa. Kṛcchreṇa means with great difficulty. The philosophers, they try to understand the Absolute Truth by mental speculation. But simply by mental speculation you cannot stay in that understanding. Or, in other words, by theoretical knowledge you cannot escape. It must be practiced. Practiced.

So in our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement we are putting the candidate into practice. Without practice, simply knowledge is no good. That is... Simply foolishly to become puffed up that "I am now liberated," no. That is not liberation. That is explained in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam elsewhere. Ye 'nye 'ravindākṣa vimukta-māninaḥ. Vimukta-māninaḥ. They're thinking that they have become liberated. Just like the Māyāvāda sannyāsīs, they address amongst themselves as "Nārāyaṇa." That means everyone has become Nārāyaṇa. The modern increase of incarnation of God means this Māyāvāda philosophy. Because in the Māyāvāda philosophy everyone thinks that he is God, Nārāyaṇa. "I have become Nārāyaṇa." Brahma-bhūta [SB 4.30.20]. "Now I have become Nārāyaṇa." No. You cannot become Nārāyaṇa. You can become Nārāyaṇa's dāsa, servant. That is your healthy state.

So if after liberation... Liberation means sufficient knowledge to understand that one is not this body. That is called liberation. So after liberation there is activity. That they do not know. They think after liberation there is no other activity. Some of them say that when the waterpot is full, there is no more sound. It is solid. But our philosophy is that when one is liberated, his actual life begins. What is that actual life? The actual life is to be engaged in the transcendental loving service of the Lord. That is actual life. Therefore in the Bhagavad-gītā it is said,

brahma-bhūtaḥ prasannātmā

na śocati na kāṅkṣati

samaḥ sarveṣu bhūteṣu

mad-bhaktiṁ labhate parām

 [Bg. 18.54]

After being brahma-bhūtaḥ, not simply by knowing ahaṁ brahmāsmi. No. One must realize, assimilate, how he is Brahman. Brahman means the same thing as the Absolute Truth. So we, all living entities, being part and parcel of the Supreme Brahman, Kṛṣṇa, certainly we are Brahman. There is no doubt about it. But if one stops activities of Brahman realization, then he falls down.

 

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 1.2.3 -- London, August 24, 1971

 

 

Actually the purpose of Bhagavad-gītā is not understandable to those who are sensuous-even if one is not sensuous but is strictly following the disciplines enjoined in the Vedic scripture, if he is not a devotee, he also cannot understand Kṛṣṇa. Even when one poses himself as a devotee of Kṛṣṇa, but is not engaged in Kṛṣṇa conscious activities, he also cannot understand Kṛṣṇa.

 

Bg 18.67 purport

 

I never asked my Spiritual Master one question except one: "How shall I serve you?'

 

Letter to: Upendra — Calcutta 19 February, 1972

 

 

Krsna consciousness is not an artificial imposition on the soul, but it is the original spontaneous consciousness of every living entity. The knowledge is already there within our heart, it simply has to be revived. Therefore it is not dogmatic. The rules and regulations are simply meant to revive our original function as the eternal servants of the Complete Whole. Because we are parts and parcels of the Whole, by serving the Whole, we ourselves become pleased just like branches and leaves of a tree become nourished when we water the root. This is the whole purpose of hearing from the spiritual master –to revive our natural serving propensity towards Krsna.

 

 

In our conditioned life, we have forgotten our relationship with God, but by regulative principles, we can make alert the inert activities. Just like a rheumatic crippled man is gradually elevated by some bodily exercises. Similarly, the regulative principles are to make us habituated to our dormant service attitude, but when that is mature, it becomes spontaneous, and that is pure Krishna Consciousness.

 

Letter to: Rupanuga — Montreal 3 July, 1968

 

 

(to be continued...)

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Thu

18

Oct

2012

The Proof Of The Vedas Part 12

by purujit dasa


NEED FOR GURU


Because the Complete Whole is eternal, the Vedas also must be eternal. As mentioned before, Vedas means “knowledge”. If knowledge is not eternal, it cannot be accepted as authoritiative because it would be relative to time, place and circumstance. Nothing relative can describe that which is absolute. 


From the Vedic literature we understand that shortly after the creation Lord Brahmā was instructed in the Vedas.  It is not that the Vedas were created by Brahmā, although Brahmā is the original person in the universe. If Brahmā did not create the Vedas but he is acknowledged as the first created being, wherefrom did Vedic knowledge come to Brahmā? Obviously the Vedas did not come from an ordinary person born in this material world. According to Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, tene brahma hṛdā ya ādi-kavaye: after the creation, the Supreme Person imparted Vedic knowledge within the heart of Brahmā. There was no person in the beginning of the creation other than Brahmā, yet he did not compile the Vedas; therefore the conclusion is that the Vedas were not compiled by any created being. Vedic knowledge was given by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who created this material world.


CC Madhya 9.49

In order to insure that the original Vedas remain intact and do not become polluted by the exploitative motivated interpretations of pseudo spiritualists they are being passed down through a disciplic line (parampara) of spiritual masters. 


The Vedic knowledge is infallible because it comes down through the perfect disciplic succession of spiritual masters beginning with the Lord Himself. The Vedic knowledge is received from the transcendental sources, and the first word was spoken by the Lord Himself. The words spoken by the Lord are called apauruseya, not delivered by any person of the mundane world. A living being of the mundane world has four defects, which are: 1. that he must commit mistakes, 2. he must sometimes be illusioned, 3. he must try to cheat others, and 4. he is endowed with imperfect senses. With these four principles of imperfection one cannot deliver perfect information in the matter of all-pervading knowledge. The Vedas are not known like that. The Vedic knowledge was originally imparted into the heart of Brahmā the first created living being, and Brahmā in his turn disseminated the knowledge to his sons and disciples, who have continued the process down through history.


Iso Mantra 1 

The qualification of the spiritual master is that he presents the message of the Vedas as it is as he heard it from his spiritual master without change. 


What five thousand years ago Vyāsadeva instructed or Kṛṣṇa instructed, the same thing we are also instructing. Therefore there is no difference between instruction. Therefore guru is one. Although hundreds and thousands of ācāryas have come and gone, but the message is one. Therefore guru cannot be two. Real guru will not talk differently. Some guru says that “In my opinion, you should like this,” and some guru will say, “In my opinion you’ll do this”—they are not guru; they are all rascals. Guru has no “own” opinion. Guru has got only one opinion, the same opinion which was expressed by Kṛṣṇa, Vyāsadeva or Nārada or Arjuna or Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu or the Gosvāmīs. You’ll find the same thing. Five thousand years ago, Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa spoke Bhagavad-gītā and Vyāsadeva wrote it, recorded it. Vyāsadeva does not say that “It is my opinion.” Vyāsadeva writes, śrī bhagavān uvāca: “Whatever writing, it is spoken by the Supreme Personality of Godhead.” He’s not giving his own opinion. Śrī bhagavān uvāca. Therefore he is guru. He is not misinterpreting the words of Kṛṣṇa. He’s giving as it is. Just like a bearer, peon. Somebody has written you letter, the peon has got the letter. It does not mean he has to correct it or edit it or addition or... No. He’ll present it. That is his duty. Then he is guru. He’s honest. Similarly, guru cannot be two. Mind that. The person may be different, but the message is the same. Therefore guru is one.
[lecture London 73]


The guru also explains the essence of the Vedas according to time, place and circumstance. In other words, although the knowledge itself is unchanging and eternal, the spiritual master presents it in such an expert way that we can understand it from our relative point of view, which is quite to the opposite- ever-changing and temporary. In other words he explains things which are beyond our experience by using examples which are within our experience. This requires complete realization of the subject matter. 

 

Professor (Hṛdayānanda): He's saying that for example he could listen to everything that you were saying, and then he could repeat it, and someone might say to him that "Oh, you are an expert. You are a master," but actually he's not. He's simply repeating.

Prabhupāda: No, this is example. By receiving a knowledge, you must corroborate by your knowledge or by your experience, by the method.

 

Room Conversation with Professors -- February 19, 1975, Caracas

For example, as opposed to the so-called scientists who proclaim that life is coming from matter, but cannot give any example of such phenomenon taking place anywhere in the world, the spiritual master repeats the Vedic statement that life is coming from life and points out to our direct experience of such a phenomenon (living parents produce a living child) in order to corroborate the Vedic version. 
But how do we know that the guru indeed repeats the message as it is? what if he’s showing us that the essence is this, but in actuality the essence is something else? To this, we can say that because we cannot possibly verify that as it is beyond our experience, it’s just like asking: how do I know that which I do not know? 

 

Guest (3): So, Śrīla Prabhupāda, have you realized God?

Prabhupāda: What do you think? What is your opinion?

Guest (3): I can't say.Prabhupāda: Then if I say, "yes," then what you will understand? If you are not yourself expert, then even if I say, "Yes, I am God realized," how you will take it as truth? If you do not know what is God realization, then how you can ask this question and how you will be satisfied by the answer? You do not know.

Guest (3): Well, what is God realization?

Prabhupāda: Then... Then you were asking, "Are you God realized?" If I say, "Yes," then how you'll believe it? You do not know what is God realization. Then why do you put this question? You do not know yourself. If I say,"Yes," how you'll understand that I am right? Therefore you should not put all these questions. It has no value. You do not know yourself what is God realization. Now, just like a medical man, if he asks another man, medical man, so if he says, "Yes," then medical man will understand him by technical terms whether he is medical man. So unless one is medical man, what is the use of asking another man, "Are you medical man?" Unless you are prepared to take the answer whatever I give. Are you prepared?

 

Reporters Interview -- June 29, 1974, Melbourne

The answer is simple. That which is beyond our experience can be known through hearing. It is not difficult. People are fond of saying that unless they experience something, they don’t believe it. They fail to understand though that hearing is also an empirical experience just like any other. If you’re ready to experience through all other senses, why not experience through hearing? 

Anything which is beyond the scope of experience by our imperfect senses can be realized fully by the sound representation. A person transmitting sound from a far distant place can be factually experienced.

 

SB 1.5.38

 

So, just like any truly scientific man, we should make an experiment. The real question to ask is who wants to experiment? Usually it’s the people who are not satisfied with how things are. They want to experiment with something new, because they don’t like limitations. Sometimes it happens that the experiment does not work and they end up even worse than they were before. But this is the sweet excitement of brave experimentators. They are not ordinary people. They are not hesitant to take the risks in order to break the boundaries and discover new things for the benefit of the whole society. The bona fide disciple is therefore the future leader. 

 

Who needs a guru? A third-class, fourth-class man, ordinary man, doesn't require a guru. Guru, to keep a guru or to have a guru is not a fashion. One who is very serious to understand spiritual life, he requires a guru. Otherwise, there is no need of guru. Just like you keep a dog as a fashion, don't keep a guru. Guru means..., is a question of necessity. One must be very serious to understand what is spiritual life, what is God, what is my relation with God, how to act. When we are very much serious about this subject matter, then we require a guru. Don't go to a guru as a matter of fashion. That is useless. That is useless. Therefore śāstra says, tasmād guruṁ prapadyeta. Because we have to go to guru and surrender there. Without surrendering, you cannot learn anything. If you want to challenge guru, it is not possible. Then you'll learn nothing.

 

Lecture: What is a Guru? -- London, August 22, 1973

 

Prabhupāda: Any good thing, it is meant for some people, not for all people. But if there is an ideal class of men, the others will follow. Jewel. Jewel is always costly. Still everyone aspires, "If I get a jewel." That is wanted. Not that everybody can possess jewel, but still, everybody will appreciate jewel.

Yogeśvara: There are a lot of people who don't accept it because they think, "Maybe it is another imitation jewel. Maybe I'll get cheated again."

Prabhupāda: So why don't you become once more cheated? You have been cheated so many times. Why not try this also? If that is his argument, that means you have been cheated so many times. So why not once more, and see whether it is cheating or reality? That sense will not come. "Oh, I have been cheated so many times. Therefore I shall not take." So why not become once more cheated and see the value? The example, as I say, sometimes. (Bengali) ...that he lost his utensils several times. The thief stole it. Therefore he promised, "Now I shall take my food on the ground. I shall not purchase any more utensils." 

 

Morning Walk -- June 2, 1974, Geneva

 

This is a wonderful example. If a man who lost his utensils decides, ok now I will not eat anymore, he’s a nonsense because without eating he will die.  Similarly, if someone reasons that because there are many cheaters, therefore it is not worthy to experiment and hear from yet another guru, he actually doesn’t want to learn. 

Hṛdayānanda: They still have doubts on this point that how can we know that it's worth our trouble, that if we dedicate our lives to this searching for the transcendence, how can we be sure that at the end of it we won't have wasted our lives? How can we be sure that the transcendence is actually worth searching for?

Prabhupāda: No, first of all you must understand the importance of the business. Then we can do it. If you do not understand the importance of the business, then you cannot do it.

Room Conversation with Professors -- February 19, 1975, Caracas


Athāto brahma... In the Brahma-sūtra, in the Vedānta-sūtra, it is stated, athāto brahma jijñāsā. Brahma-jijñāsā. Brahma-jijñāsā means to inquire, inquire about the supreme subject matter Brahman. That requires a qualification. Atha. Atha means those who have become experienced of this miserable life of this material world. They can inquire. Then can inquire what is Absolute Truth, what is spiritual life. Athāto brahma jijñāsā. Similarly, in the Bhāgavata also it is stated, tasmād guruṁ prapadyeta jijñāsuḥ śreya uttamam [SB 11.3.21]. Śreya uttamam. Uttamam means the udgata-tamam. That is transcendental. Tama means darkness. Anything of this material world, that is in darkness because this material world is dark. You know that the whole world, whole universe, is dark. Therefore there is requisition of the sunlight, moonlight, electricity. It is dark. So uttamam means which is beyond this darkness, beyond this darkness. That means transcendental subject, spiritual subject. In the spiritual world there is no darkness. So if anyone is desirous of inquiring about the spiritual world, then he requires to find out a spiritual master. Otherwise there is no necessity. For a man who wants to remain in this darkness, for material benefit...Suppose I want some spiritual master or I want to study Bhagavad-gītā or Vedānta-sūtra so that I may make some material improvement. Oh, that is not required. For material improvement you can work just so many people are working. They are making, trying industry or something like... That is prescribed. But if you are at all interested about the Brahman subject, the spiritual subject, then you require a spiritual master. That is clearly stated. Tasmād guruṁ prapadyeta [SB 11.3.21]. Tasmāt means "Therefore one has to surrender unto the spiritual master."

Bhagavad-gītā 4.34 -- New York, August 14, 1966

 

Disciple is someone who is eager to ask questions. If he doesn’t have any questions, what will he understand about the answers? The guru can talk and talk, but there’s no benefit.
Without inquiry, you cannot make advance. Just like a student in the school who inquires from the teacher, he's very intelligent. Even a boy, a child, if he inquires from the father, "Oh, father, what is this? What is this?" that child is very intelligent. Very intelligent. So inquiry is required, not only praṇipāta... "Oh, I have found out a very good spiritual master, very learned and very good, saw. All right. I have surrendered. Then all my business finished." No. That is not...

 

Bhagavad-gītā 4.34 -- New York, August 14, 1966

Inquiry is the core engine of the learning process. It is the inquiry which moves the whole thing forward. This is completely different from faith, which is pushed on us from outside by the influence of material nature whether we asked for it or not. 
The Supreme Lord said, according to the modes of nature acquired by the embodied soul, one's faith can be of three kinds-goodness, passion or ignorance. Now hear about these.

 

Bg 17.2

 

Before we realize Krsna as a fact, we must believe in Krsna. True. The difference is that the disciple’s imagination(faith) is being purified by the spiritual master and the scripture, whereas a nonbeliever, who is taking shelter of his limited mind only is being dictated what to believe in by the conditioning of the material nature. By following the instructions of the spiritual master, we become free from the influence of material faith and by rejecting and acting so-called independently from the authority of the bona fide spiritual master, we become ever-increasingly devoted to the beliefs that are pushed on us from outside. A desire to acquire knowledge must be therefore rooted in our willingness to liberate ourselves from the influence of the material nature. At a certain point, prior to meeting the spiritual master we have to, on our own come to conclusion that ignorance means suffering. 
Suppose I want to go somewhere. Now I am in the station. Actually, it so happened when I came to New York first from India. I was to be dispatched to Butler by the bus station, but I was a new man. I did not know the rules and regulation. Of course, somebody was guiding me. Still, I was very much in disturbed condition, how to get on the bus, how to get the ticket, how... All these. So disturbance of mind is due to our ignorance. 

 

Bhagavad-gītā 2.13 -- New York, March 11, 1966

 

By nature's own way the complete system of material activities is a source of perplexity for everyone. In every step there is perplexity, and therefore it behooves one to approach a bona fide spiritual master who can give one proper guidance for executing the purpose of life. All Vedic literatures advise us to approach a bona fide spiritual master to get free from the perplexities of life which happen without our desire. They are like a forest fire that somehow blazes without being set by anyone. Similarly, the world situation is such that perplexities of life automatically appear, without our wanting such confusion. No one wants fire, and yet it takes place, and we become perplexed. The Vedic wisdom therefore advises that in order to solve the perplexities of life and to understand the science of the solution, one must approach a spiritual master who is in the disciplic succession. A person with a bona fide spiritual master is supposed to know everything. One should not, therefore, remain in material perplexities but should approach a spiritual master. This is the purport of this verse.

 

Bg 2.7 purport

 

That is why people go to school –they don’t want to suffer being unemployed. This is why we have computer because we don’t have to suffer by unnecessarily going to 1000 different places to check the info. Intelligence is basically for stopping our misery, relieve the distressful situation. This is the difference between man and animal. A human wants to stop or avoid his suffering, an animal cannot.  

 

It does not require any education, simply thinking that, a slight thinking, that "I do not want all these sufferings, but I am suffering. Why? Is there any solution? Is there...?" But there is solution. All these scriptures, all these Vedic knowledge, everything... And not only Vedic knowledge... Now... Oh, why you are going to school? Why you are going to college? Why you are taking scientific education? Why you are taking law education? Everything is meant for ending our sufferings. If there was no suffering, then nobody would have taken education. 

 

(Bhagavad-gita 2.7-11, New York, March 2, 1966)

There is no necessity of approach­ing a spiritual master unless one is in need of solving the problems of life. One who does not know how to put questions before the spiritual master has no business to see him.

 

SB 1972 1.19.31 purport

 

Paramahaṁsa: They don't see how they can have faith if they have no knowledge of God. And they argue, "Well, I don't know God. So how can I have faith in Him?"

Prabhupāda: You learn from me. I am your spiritual master. You tell him. You are asking me. Why you are asking me? What is...? Why you are asking me?

Paramahaṁsa: Well, I was just giving an argument that people...

Prabhupāda: No, argument, that's all right. Why you are asking me?

Paramahaṁsa: For knowledge.Prabhupāda: For knowledge. So take knowledge from me.

Yogeśvara: That's what you tell them.

Prabhupāda: "Otherwise, why you are asking, wasting your time and my time? If you are asking, you take knowledge from me." Is that all right?

Paramahaṁsa: Yes.

Prabhupāda: Yes. If... The same example. Suppose I do not know which way to go. If I ask somebody, it is supposed that he knows. Is it not?

Paramahaṁsa: Yes

.Prabhupāda: Otherwise, why I shall ask somebody? It is supposed that he knows. Now, when you ask him, then you must take his word. He says, "You go this way." You shall go there. And again, you say, "Why shall I go this way?" And why, rascal, you come to ask me? Is it not? You asked me, "Which way I shall go to go to that place?" I say, "You go this way." And if you again say, "Why shall I go this way?" "Then why, rascal, you come to waste my time and your time?" This is the answer. If you ask me, then you take my word. Eh?

Devotees: Jaya.

Prabhupāda: That's it. And if you think that I do not know, then why do you ask me, and waste your time and my time? Therefore śāstra says that "Ask from guru." If you accept somebody as guru, then ask from him. As soon as you ask, the man to whom you ask, he is your guru.


Morning Walk -- June 11, 1974, Paris

So it’s either you ask and be ready to hear, or don’t ask and remain as you are. The one who asks, but doesn’t want to accept the answer sometimes thinks that the spiritual master is a businessman. He wants to make a deal with the spiritual master. “I will accept you, but this instruction I do not want to hear, can you take it out?” This is not a sincere disciple and a spiritual master who agrees to fulfill such whimsical desires is not a spiritual master, but a bogus man, who in order to get material facilities from the so-called disciples becomes their pet.  


The conditions for hearing the transcendental message of the Absolute Truth are set forth herein. The first condition is that the audience must be very sincere and eager to hear. And the speaker must be in the line of disciplic succession from the recognized ācārya. The transcendental message of the Absolute is not understandable by those who are materially absorbed. Under the direction of a bona fide spiritual master, one becomes gradually purified. Therefore, one must be in the chain of disciplic succession and learn the spiritual art of submissive hearing. In the case of Sūta Gosvāmī and the sages of Naimiṣāraṇya, all these conditions are fulfilled because Śrīla Sūta Gosvāmī is in the line of Śrīla Vyāsadeva, and the sages of Naimiṣāraṇya are all sincere souls who are anxious to learn the truth. Thus the transcendental topics of Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa's superhuman activities, His incarnation, His birth, appearance or disappearance, His forms, His names and so on are all easily understandable because all requirements are fulfilled. Such discourses help all men on the path of spiritual realization.


SB 1.1.13

 

The Vedic knowledge is a science. Just like in mathematics, if you change one number, the whole calculation comes out wrong. The disciplic succession of spiritual masters is passing the science as it is, so the conclusion of one master will match the conclusion of his predecessors. Just as knowledge is one and universal, similarly guru is one. 
The Vedas enjoin us to seek out a guru; actually, they say to seek out the guru, not just a guru. The guru is one because he comes in disciplic succession. What Vyāsadeva and Kṛṣṇa taught five thousand years ago is also being taught now. There is no difference between the two instructions. Although hundreds and thousands of ācāryas have come and gone, the message is one. The real guru cannot be two, for the real guru does not speak differently from his predecessors. 


SSR 2a: What Is a Guru?

Another point is that disciplic succession does not mean one has to be directly a disciple of a particular person. The conclusions which we have tried to explain in our Bhagavad-gita As It Is is the same as those conclusions of Arjuna. Arjuna accepted Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and we also accept the same truth under the disciplic succession of Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Things equal to the same thing are equal to one another. This is an axiomatic truth. So there is no difference of opinion of understanding Krishna between ourselves and Arjuna. Another example is that a tree has many branches, and you will find one leaf here and another leaf there. But if you take this leaf and the other leaf and you press them both, you will see that the taste is the same. The taste is the conclusion, and from the taste you can understand that both leaves are from the same tree.


Letter to: Kirtanananda — Los Angeles 25 January, 1969

 

Guru speaks whatever his guru says and his guru says whatever his guru says and ultimately all gurus say what the scripture says. Therefore we have to hear what the guru says, not see how he looks, or how many disciples he has.  
As there are symptoms for each and every man, in terms of his particular situation, similarly one who is Kṛṣṇa conscious has his particular nature—talking, walking, thinking, feeling, etc. As a rich man has his symptoms by which he is known as a rich man, as a diseased man has his symptoms, by which he is known as diseased, or as a learned man has his symptoms, so a man in transcendental consciousness of Kṛṣṇa has specific symptoms in various dealings. One can know his specific symptoms from the Bhagavad-gītā. Most important is how the man in Kṛṣṇa consciousness speaks, for speech is the most important quality of any man. It is said that a fool is undiscovered as long as he does not speak, and certainly a well-dressed fool cannot be identified unless he speaks, but as soon as he speaks, he reveals himself at once. The immediate symptom of a Kṛṣṇa conscious man is that he speaks only of Kṛṣṇa and of matters relating to Him.

 

Bg 2.54 purport

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Thu

11

Oct

2012

The Proof Of The Vedas Part 11

by purujit dasa

 

WATER THE ROOT

 

All the different departments of knowledge can be understood only if we establish ourselves in the knowledge of the Complete Whole. Krsna says:

 

yāvān artha udapāne

sarvataḥ samplutodake

tāvān sarveṣu vedeṣu

brāhmaṇasya vijānataḥ

 

All purposes that are served by the small pond can at once be served by the great reservoirs of water. Similarly, all the purposes of the Vedas can be served to one who knows the purpose behind them.

 

Bg 2.46

 

…and later on:

 

vedaiś ca sarvair aham eva vedyo

 

By all the Vedas am I to be known.

 

Bg 15.15

 

Srila Prabhupada said that because he knows Krsna, he is able to challenge and defeat big scientists and philosophers, although he himself is not a scientist, nor a big scholar. This is because the purpose of all the Vedas is to understand the Complete Whole, Krsna. Just like great reservoirs of water can serve all the purposes of a small pond, similarly, by understanding the Complete Whole, Krsna, one knows everything. This is real science.

 

To give an example, zero has no value, but as soon as the digit one is placed before the zero, the zero immediately becomes ten. If there are two zeros, they become one hundred, and three zeros become one thousand. Similarly, we are intoxicated by material assets that are actually no better than zero, but as soon as we add Kṛṣṇa, these tens and hundreds and thousands and millions of zeros become extremely valuable. The Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement therefore offers a great opportunity to the people of the West. They have an overabundance of the zeros of materialistic life, and if they simply add Kṛṣṇa their life will become sublimely valuable.

 

TQK 9: Decreasing the Fever of Illusion

 

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