Room Conversation with Siddha-svarupa
His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
May 3, 1976, Honolulu
Prabhupada: …by taking birth of any, whether the tree is taking birth or the ant is taking birth and the fish is taking birth. Everywhere, living entities, they are taking birth, that’s all. And they are dying also. And between birth and death there is disease and old age. So during birth one cannot understand, because there is unconscious stage. So even the fetus is killed, it cannot under…, because fully unconscious stage. And there is life undoubtedly; otherwise how the fetus all of a sudden gets life? But these mudhas cannot see it. Here in this matter there is no life; therefore many thousands of years, if you kill, it will never show any symptom of life. But if there is life, at a time it will come to consciousness. Just like fainted man is lying like a dead man, but he is not dead. There is life. It is fainted, unconscious state. So because there is life, he may lie down in that unconscious state for two, three hours; again he’ll come. It is common sense. And if a log, wood log, is lying flat, will it come to life, anything? But because these mudhas, they are taking that “Fetus has no life. Kill it, finish it and eat it.” It is going on. You know that?
Siddha-svarupa: I imagined that it would soon go on, on a mass scale, that…
Prabhupada: No, it will go, because they are becoming more mudhas. There is no intelligence. Therefore I say that we are giving this intelligence. This is the only movement to make these mudhas intelligent. This is the only movement. Otherwise they are becoming more and more and more and more mudhas. So under the circumstances, if we also become mudhas, then who will make the other mudhas intelligent? That is my point. There are so many things. I’ll begin this, I mean to say, recitation of Sixth Canto. There are so many nice instructions. So this… [break]…even they are kept to remain as mudhas, all other so-called attempts… There are many other attempts for awakening the human society to right platform, but their basic principle is wrong. They cannot do it. It is not possible. (pause) So there is no kirtana?
Guru-krpa: Yeah. At seven. The aratika is at seven. Ten minutes. Now it’s tulasi worship.
Prabhupada: So this movement should be pushed very vigorously. And so far, we have become successful. And enemies will be always, as soon as there is something good. That is the way of material world. Even Krsna had enemies, what to speak of us. Eh? So many enemies, but He was powerful; He killed all them. Nobody could kill Him, but there was attempt to kill Him from the very beginning of His birth. He had so many enemies. As soon as Kamsa heard that his sister is now newly married, but as soon as there was some foretelling, “Ah, you are taking care of your sister so nicely. The eighth child of this sister will kill you.” “Oh, where is your child? Where is pregnancy?” Nothing. He became angry. “So why wait for eighth child? Kill my sister.” Long, long before taking birth of Krsna, the mother was to be killed. This is the position of this material world. So he became so bad that “My sister…” He did not consider that “She is my sister, and she is just newly married. Where is pregnancy? Where is child? And that is the eighth child, and what will happen after that?” No consideration. Immediately, “Kill him, kill her.” This is the position. So we are instructing: no intoxication. So those who are flourishing by selling cigarettes and wine and liquor, they do not… “Immediately kill him.” Oh, yes, in this way. “If they, the movement goes and becomes very strong, then our business will be lost. Kill him.” So naturally they will be enemies. The same thing, the Kamsa saw that “This my sister, now she is married. So although it will take some long time, but here is the cause.” So they are thinking like that. No meat-eating, then all slaughterhouses will be closed: “They’re enemy.” Although there is no such symptom that slaughterhouse is going to be closed, but they’ll think like that. They’ll think like that, the same way. There is no ex… [break] …pregnancy, first, second, third, then eighth, and the child will go, take birth and… They are thinking like that. So the modern civilization, we are everyone saying. Because you have forbidden: no illicit sex, no intoxication, no meat-eating, no gambling. The whole Western world living on these four pillars. Just see our position. And the same conscious way, everyone is thinking, “If this movement goes on, then how all these nightclubs will go on? How all breweries will go on? How all slaughterhouse will go on, cigarette factories will go on?” This is all foolish. So you cannot expect that we will get more, many friends. That is not possible, because the world is full of Kamsas, demons. So we have to struggle and… In the face of so many obstacles we have come to this standard that there is one Hare Krsna movement; it is very dangerous to the modern way of life. That much is great, advance. They’re feeling the pulse. Now when they are meeting, state obstacles. Everywhere we are meeting obstacles. In Singapore.
Pusta Krsna: We went to the airport.
Pusta Krsna: And practically they didn’t even want to let us stay in the airport. We had to stay there only for four hours to catch the next flight. They are so much…
Prabhupada: This is our position. Gradually they will show Hare Krsna movement. In India also, although India’s… They will want to crush down this movement. So this will be up to Him. Krsna or Krsna’s movement, the same thing. And Krsna was attempted to be killed by Kamsa class of men and his company, the demons. So it will be there; it is already there. Don’t be disappointed, because that is the meaning that it is successful. Krsna’s favor is there, because Krsna and Krsna’s movement is not different, identical. So as Krsna was attempted to be killed, many, many years before He appeared… At eighth child, if the mother produces child yearly, still ten years, eight years before His birth, the mother was to be attempted to be killed. So there may be attempt like that. And Lord Jesus Christ was killed. So they may kill me also.
Siddha-svarupa: I don’t think that is possible.
Prabhupada: No, I mean to say, I am not so important man. But it is the, this is the way of the law. If we become weak by factioning, then that is not good. We must be strong and… But you do not expect that this movement will be accepted. In India the so-called yogis, Rama Krishna Mission—they are also being afraid of. There are so many… But if we remain sincere, even we are feeble, new-born, nobody can kill us. That is a fact. Just like Krsna when He was three months old, attempt was made by Putana to kill Him, but the Putana was killed. A big demon, gigantic, six miles long, and what is killed by a small child playing on the…, sucking breast and sucking life. That is Krsna. So the other day I have explained that by guru, he is accepted as good as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. You have typed it?
Prabhupada: Go on. Yes, arcye visnau sila-dhir gurusu nara-matih. Naraki, if anyone thinks arca-vigraha, the Deities as made of stone, made of earth, or made of something material, and guru, the spiritual master, “He is an ordinary man”—these are forbidden. So why guru is to be considered saksad dharitvena samasta-sastrair **, exactly (like) the Supreme Personality of Godhead? That reason is given there. That reason is that he is giving the Krsna knowledge; therefore he is as good as Krsna. Even though his family members or his friend thinking, “Oh, he has now become guru,” still he should be considered the Supreme Personality of Godhead. That reason also given there, that even Krsna was taken as ordinary man, but does it mean that He has become ordinary? Similarly any…, our movement, it may appear just like other movement, but because the movement is giving Krsna, that means it is as good as Krsna. This is the example. Ajnaya hana (follow the order). It may appear to others… And there are so many movements, and the hippies have taken another say(?), but it is not that. It is actually Krsna. So long it adheres to the principle, “I’ll enjoy, I’ll be unaccepted(?).” Otherwise it is ordinary movement. This same man, he’s guru, so long he gives the real knowledge of Krsna. And the same man, he’s ordinary man, as soon as he cannot give. Same thing, just like a stone doll, when it is worshiped according to the regulative principles—Krsna. And the same doll, kept in the sculptor’s showroom, it is stone. So if we keep our movement pure, then you are as strong as Krsna. And as soon as you deviate from it, immediately, ordinary. This is the secret. Now it is up to us, how to keep it pure. Then no enemy can kill us. Nobody can kill you. That purity is wanted, then it will… So what is there difficulty? Their purity to kill him(?). Follow the rules and regulations, worship the Deity, and chant Hare Krsna mantra, as you have given, then you will remain as strong as Krsna. And if we manufacture some idea also, that is no good. Krsna cannot be manufactured; Krsna is Krsna. You cannot manufacture another form competitor of Krsna. That is no good. Then failure. Just like the, your one competitor came to, even in the lifetime of Krsna, Paundraka.
Pusta Krsna: Yes.
Prabhupada: With artificial four hands. You know that? (laughs) That is no (indistinct). This movement is actually the real movement to raise the human society. And if we create factions, then the movement will be less strong and will not act very (indistinct). (pause) Australian dollar question is solved with you? And this check can be deposited.
Pusta Krsna: I think it will turn out OK.
Prabhupada: But this dealing of the bank is very…
Pusta Krsna: Not good. I know. I complained to the bank manager also.
Prabhupada: So this is right.
Pusta Krsna: They said their hands were tied because the specimen signature on the check…
Prabhupada: They give me writing check.
Pusta Krsna: Yes.
Prabhupada: Why you are talking? Give me writing, that this is not bona fide. Then we take this step, “Your check nonpayment: we will have to take steps.” “We wanted this money; we have deposited the money there, and you are not paying. What is this?”
Pusta Krsna: We are being inconvenienced by…
Prabhupada: “So now you have to pay the balance. We did not carry the money, took a check, and immediately pay, now you have detained it. So you give me in writing why you are not paying. Then we shall take steps. We should not be punished.” Sometimes they take advantage, “Oh, he is servant(?) class, he must be fool number one.” (chuckles) They think it. [break] …no loss or commission.
Pusta Krsna: Not on the check.
Prabhupada: Check, there is no question. They can deposit immediately in our account. It is cashier’s check; it has to be cashed immediately. So did you ask about the dollars, despatching to India?
Pusta Krsna: No, Prabhupada.
Pusta Krsna: They said they would…
Prabhupada: No, no difficult, but what is rate?
Pusta Krsna: The rate, ah, 11.34 American cents equals one rupee.
Pusta Krsna: Yes. I haven’t converted into how many… I can do that.
Prabhupada: 11.34, that is good rate. So I wish that… We should combine the work very vigorously when this (indistinct). They are just like women, equal in preaching (indistinct). You keep some women together, and they fight. The children together, they will fight. Dogs together, they will fight. Sane man, why they will fight? Where is the cause of fight? Then you are (indistinct) to become woman. Worse. This material world is such that even you keep some utensil together, when dealing, tung, tung, tung, tung, tung, what to speak of individuals souls. But our cause is the common, how to push on. That soberness must be there. I can give you points, instructions, you will have to put it into shape; otherwise how it will go on?
Pusta Krsna: We can understand that Your Divine Grace does not want factions.
Prabhupada: That will better the movement.
Guru-krpa: Sometimes, Srila Prabhupada, it just seems there is a… The (indistinct) is that there seems to be a difference in the way Krsna consciousness is being…
Prabhupada: Why different?
Guru-krpa: Well, there’s only one way…
Prabhupada: So now why there should be different? The formula is there. Why there should be difference?
Guru-krpa: Then there is someone who’s not doing it properly according to the…
Prabhupada: There is (indistinct), that should be settled up. Suppose you are not doing properly, I can say, “This is this,” do, show you how to do it other way. [break] Where is Govinda dasi? Where is the Deity information? She is manufacturing some (indistinct).
Prabhupada: Yes. [break] In India, Punjab National give us 8.84.
Pusta Krsna: Yes.
Prabhupada: (aside:) That’s all right. Just put over (here). (indistinct) [break] That I want.
Pusta Krsna: That we should work together.
Prabhupada: Yes. What is this (indistinct)?
Hari-sauri: There’s no problem with… [break] …as far as distributing Krsna consciousness like that, but the thing is they simply don’t want to cooperate with the ISKCON movement.
Prabhupada: But why?
Hari-sauri: That no one knows. They simply just don’t want to mix.
Prabhupada: That we can settle up by sitting together. Why there should be difference?
Hari-sauri: Just like in New Zealand, originally they split from ISKCON, and now gradually you are bringing them back to the same standard again, like now you’re encouraging them to build a temple and install Deities. That means they have to come up to the required brahminical standard again. So why was there any need to go away in the first place? But still they won’t cooperate. Now they’ll have to do it their own way. This is…, that’s their problem.
Prabhupada: One thousand. No, don’t tear. It is written there, “One thousand.”
Pusta Krsna: Yes. There’s fifties and twenties. There’s one fifty note, one hundred notes, twenty notes…
Pusta Krsna: Usually, when they write like this, they’re the same denomination.
Prabhupada: Anyway, you can count, yes. [break]
Siddha-svarupa: There are a lot of devotees here who follow the principles but cannot completely… [break] …shaved up, and they still wear karmi clothes pretty much, but they’re clean, they’re devotees, and in this way they’re attracting many of the local people, because they’re able to relate to them.
Prabhupada: So that…
Siddha-svarupa: They’re not lowering your standard.
Prabhupada: No, naturally, but when they are initiated they must shave. They must keep to the standard. If one becomes initiated and he still keeps the hippie form, that does not look nice. Do you think that is all right? No, that is not good. So long they are coming as outsider, joining kirtana, they may have their own dress, it doesn’t matter. They are coming to kirtana, that must be (indistinct). But when they are to be initiated, they must follow the rules and regulations given by the spiritual master.
Prabhupada: Otherwise they should not be initiated. It is simple thing. Let them go on chanting, taking prasadam; we have no (indistinct). But when they are to be initiated, they must follow. This is the clear (indistinct). If you don’t want to disturb them, let them come, chant, dance, take prasadam We have no objection. But don’t recommend them for initiation unless he agrees to the rules and regulations given by the spiritual master. Where is the wrong? Where is the difficulty? You can talk with him like that.
Siddha-svarupa: I think they only feel that because…
Prabhupada: No feeling, if you…, when you are surrendering to the spiritual… Sisyas te ’ham sadhi mam prapannam. Find out this verse. Tad viddhi pranipatena pariprasnena sevaya.
tad viddhi pranipatena pariprasnena sevaya upadeksyanti te jnanam jnaninas tattva-darsinah [Bg. 4.34]
“Just try to learn the truth by approaching a spiritual master. Enquire from him submissively…”
Prabhupada: Mm? Where are they? Mm.
Hari-sauri: “Just try to learn the truth by approaching a spiritual master. Enquire from him submissively and render service unto him. The self-realized soul can impart knowledge unto you because he has seen the truth.”
Prabhupada: You have to submit. You cannot remain independent. That is the first condition. Sisyas te ’ham, sisya. Sisya means voluntarily accepting the rules offered by the spiritual master. That is sisya: “Ah, yes, I agree to abide by your order.” Then he becomes sisya. Otherwise where is the question… “I am thinking like this, I am thinking…” So long you are thinking otherwise, you don’t try to become a sisya. You remain outside and you are welcome: chant, dance, take prasadam, and remain independent. There is no objection. But when you become sisya, then you cannot remain independent. These things convince him. Then you don’t become sisya. Remain as friend, there is no harm. Just like so many people, they come. So if these things (indistinct). One thousand twenty, checks (indistinct). This way. What is the wrong there?
Hari-sauri: So then part of initiation means that you’re prepared to do something more than simply chant and eat prasadam?
Prabhupada: Initiation means to follow instructions of the spiritual master. That is the first (indistinct) And if there is still hesitation to surrender to the rules and regulations, then all other (indistinct).
Siddha-svarupa: I think it is pretty clear, Srila Prabhupada. It’s just for clarification, that they’re working, they have a store on…, a very nice store, they’re distributing foodstuffs to all the other stores on the island, and they’re working a lot within the society with the karmis, I guess. So their thinking is that “If we shave our heads and wear robes, like that, then they’ll look at us…
Prabhupada: That is not… Because imitating. Officially don’t chant. Who is prohibiting to chant? You can chant, you can dance, you can take prasadam.
Pusta Krsna: Can they actually say that “His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada is my spiritual master” if they haven’t accepted all of the instructions?
Pusta Krsna: Can one actually say that my spiritual master is such- and-such person if I am not following all of the…
Prabhupada: What is the use of following (indistinct). We have got that simple thing, you can follow. What is the use? False propaganda. Because you think that we could not accept… (indistinct) …we are trying to follow the (indistinct).
Hari-sauri: One of the differences that first sprung up between the two groups was that one group was going out when you were saying “Go out and distribute books profusely,” so they were going and distributing. And they had various means of doing it. Some were not so good, but still the books were going out. Then the group that split away, they were saying, “Ah, you’re disturbing the public by these methods of book distribution. We don’t want…” This is what happened in Australia, the one temple in Brisbane. They became very much against the sankirtana methods, and as a result they gave up the sankirtana program altogether and then went to live on farms like this, and they left the temple and the temple was finished. So like this, they were saying that “We’re still following Prabhupada’s instructions, but we…” But they were saying that the devotees who were distributing the books, they were not following instructions. Like that.
Prabhupada: His Divine Grace has said that “You distribute book,” and why do you say that?
Hari-sauri: Well, their idea was that because sometimes the public is becoming disturbed by the book distribution, then therefore it’s not being done correctly. So it should be stopped.
Prabhupada: Public may disturb, but we are following our own course of action. It is not obligatory. We are requesting you, “Take this book.” That is not obligatory. “If you like, you can take. If you don’t like, don’t take.”
Siddha-svarupa: I think that…
Hari-sauri: So what their idea was that we shall build some public relations, like you said with this store. They prefer to try to spread Krsna consciousness by public relations, give good impression, and then people will come.
Prabhupada: Then you are dictated by the public, not by the dictation of your spiritual master. Spiritual master has ordered to distribute books; you shall do that. That is obedience. Now the public may take or not take, that is public’s option. But my duty is— because spiritual master has said—I must try my best. Spiritual master has not said that “You must sell so many books daily, otherwise I will reject you.” He has not said that. So everyone may try his best, that’s all. The public may take or not take, it doesn’t matter. And if you are, want to please the public, public says that “You dance naked, I will be very happy with you, I’ll give you (indistinct).” So I’ll have to do that. Then what is the use of making a spiritual master? Public, they have got their whims, how to become pleased. So we are to follow all these things? We have to follow our instruction of the spiritual master. That is… (indistinct) Why to manufacture “The public will be pleased like this”? Public may or may not give you, what you can do?
Hari-sauri: Our success is in the spiritual master’s pleasure, not the public’s pleasure.
Prabhupada: Yes, that is bhakti. Otherwise why Krsna says, sarva-dharman parityajya mam ekam saranam vraja [Bg. 18.66]? “You haven’t got to please so many religious instructions. You simply please Me.” That is Krsna’s…
Siddha-svarupa: I don’t think the devotees who factioned out were against book distribution. I think that a little bit was that some of the devotees were using very, very forceful tactics and trying to give people books and take their money, and people were becoming very offended…
Prabhupada: That is not (indistinct).
Siddha-svarupa: That is not what you want.
Hari-sauri: That’s all right, but don’t give up the book distribution.
Hari-sauri: This is what happened. The temples fell down, the devotees went away. The ones who were distributing the books went on and distributed more books, became more expert, so that the public were not so much disturbed, and still they’re distributing books. But these people who factioned off are not distributing books even now, two or three years later. So it was simply actually a question of faultfinding more than earnest desire to please the spiritual master.
Prabhupada: Yes. (pause) Discuss.
Devotee: All glories to Srila Prabhupada. (end)