Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.5.8-9
by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
New Vrindaban, May 24, 1969

Prabhupada: …you have no tilaka.

Devotee: Oh. Sorry, Prabhupada.


om ajnana-timirandhasya jnananjana-salakaya caksur unmilitam yena tasmai sri-gurave-namah

sri-caitanya-mano-’bhistam sthapitam yena bhu-tale svayam rupah kada mahyam dadati sva-padantikam

he krsna karuna-sindho dina-bandho jagat-pate gopesa gopika-kanta radha-kanta namo ’stu te

tapta-kancana-gaurangi radhe vrndavanesvari vrsabhanu-sute devi pranamami hari-priye

So, Vyasadeva is submitting himself to his spiritual master Narada Muni, that “Yes, what you say is right, that I have tried to understand the Absolute Truth through your grace, and I have tried to explain also the Absolute Truth in so many books, Vedas, Puranas, Upanisads, Vedanta-sutra, but still I am not happy. So what is the defect in me?” So Narada uvaca, Narada replied,

bhavatanudita-prayam yaso bhagavato ’malam yenaivasau na tusyeta manye tad darsanam khilam

The whole scheme should be to satisfy the Lord. This is the secret of success. Tasmin tuste jagat tustam. If God, or Krsna, is satisfied, then whole world is satisfied. The modern civilization is lacking this knowledge. Asuric civilization, demonic civilization, what to speak of satisfying God, they are denying the existence of God. And they want peace and happiness.

I remember there was a speech by Archbishop of Canterbury. He said that “You people, you want kingdom of God without God.” That is our policy—Ravana’s policy. Ravana’s policy was kingdom of God without God. Kingdom of God means everyone is prosperous, happy in every respect. That is considered as kingdom of God so far materially considered. So Ravana wanted. He was materialistic. His capital was almost gold. Every house was, I mean to say, wrapped with gold. Svarna-lanka. Svarna-lanka means at that time Ravana’s kingdom, the Ceylon, modern Ceylon, was covered with gold everywhere. Very rich. Very, very rich. It is said that in Ravana’s room, moon was rising. That means there was electricity at that time also, or similar lights. So the descriptions are very nice. It was very prosperous and rich country. And the policy was without God. Material civilization means like that, without God.

So the result was… What was the result? That everything became vanquished. Whole Ravana’s kingdom with his family, with his everything, finished. Mare krsna rakhe ke rakhe krsna mare ke. If Krsna protects, nobody can kill him, and if Krsna kills, nobody can protect him. So Ramacandra, Lord Ramacandra, killed him. He was a great devotee of Lord Siva, Ravana. Generally, the demons are devotees of Brahma, Siva, generally. They don’t like Visnu because there is restriction. Visnu worship does not mean unrestricted sense gratification. No. In other worship there is allowed. “All right. You… Whatever you do…” Therefore, generally, people do not take to Visnu worship. Vaisnava, you’ll find very small number of men, they are really pure Vaisnava. So Ravana was a great devotee of Lord Siva, but when Ramacandra, Lord Visnu—Ramacandra is also Visnu—He wanted to kill him, Lord Siva could not save him.

There are many stories about it, that when Ravana was on the actual battlefield, he was praying Lord Siva. Generally, one who worships some demigod or somebody, he remembers. And Parvati, the wife of Lord Siva, was insisting that “Your devotee is in so great danger, and he is repeatedly calling you to help him. And why you are not going? You are sitting?” The Lord Siva said, “Now he is destined to die. Lord Ramacandra has come to kill him. Nobody can save him.” That is the fact. Rakhe krsna mare ke mare krsna rakhe ke. If Krsna gives protection to somebody, nobody can kill him. And if Krsna kills somebody, nobody can give him protection, whatever he may be.

So we are… Our business should be, the whole business should be how to please the Supreme Lord. And in the Bhagavad-gita there is a very simple formula how to please the Supreme Lord. Krsna says,

ya idam paramam guhyam mad-bhaktesv abhidhasyati [Bg 18.68]

na ca tasman manusyesu kascin me priya-krttamah [Bg. 18.69]

Krsna said that “A person who is taking the risk and trouble of preaching this confidential philosophy, Bhagavad-gita as it is…” Paramam guhyam, very confidential. Confidential means that the last instruction of Bhagavad-gita, simply to surrender unto the Supreme, Krsna, is not understandable by ordinary men. Even great scholars like Dr. Radhakrishnan, he denies. Asuram bhavam asritah. One who has taken the attitude of becoming a demonic, however learned he may be, mayayapahrta-jnanah. His learning, his knowledge, has been taken away by maya. And asuram bhavam, na mam prapadyante. They will never surrender. This is the sign of demon. They will never surrender. They will be killed, they will go to hell, they will accept all the thing, but still, if you ask him that “You surrender to…” “No.” That is demonic.

Therefore one who surrenders to Krsna, or God, is very fortunate. Bahunam janmanam ante jnanavan mam prapadyate [Bg. 7.19] One who surrenders, he’s not ordinary man. He is greater than all scholars, all philosophers, all yogis, all karmis. Topmost man, one who surrenders. Therefore it is very confidential. So our teaching, Krsna consciousness movement, to present Bhagavad-gita as it is, is a process of teaching people how to surrender to Krsna, or God. That’s all. Therefore Krsna says this is a confidential… Nobody will accept. But one who takes the risk, “Please, surrender…” So when you go to preach, you know the preachers are sometimes attacked. Just like Nityananda Prabhu was attacked by Jagai-Madhai. And when Lord Jesus Christ was crucified, killed… So a preacher has the risk. Therefore Krsna says, “These field workers who are engaged in preaching this Bhagavad-gita as it is, they are very, very dear to Me. Very, very dear to Me.” Na ca tasman manusyesu kascin me priya-krttamah [Bg. 18.69]. “There is nobody dearer to Me than that person who preaches this confidential truth to the people.”

Therefore if we want to please Krsna, we have to take this risk. Krsna, guru. My spiritual master took this risk, preaching work, and he inspired us also to do that preaching work. And we are also imploring you to take this preaching work. So this preaching work, however, I mean to say, I mean to say, poorly we do… Poorly—it is not poor, but suppose I am not very much educated. Just like this boy. If I send him for preaching work, he is not very educated now. He’s not a philosopher. He’s not a scholar. But he can also preach. He can also preach. Because our preaching is not very difficult thing. If we go from door to door and simply request people, “My dear sir, you chant Hare Krsna.” And if he’s little advanced, “Please try to read Teachings of Lord Caitanya. It is very nice. You’ll be benefited.” These three four words will make you a preacher. Is it very difficult task? (chuckles) You may not be very learned, very good scholar, very good philosopher. You simply say… Go and door to door: “My dear sir, you are very learned man. For the time being, you stop your learning. Simply chant Hare Krsna.”

Just like Prabodhananda Sarasvati did. He said, dante nidhaya trnakam padayor nipatya. The preaching method he is teaching. Prabodhananda Sarasvati, he was a great devotee of Lord Caitanya. He wrote one book, Caitanya-candramrta, “The Moonlight of Lord Caitanya,” in Sanskrit. He belonged to southern India. And his nephew became one of the Gosvamis. When Lord Caitanya was staying at his home, he was at that time householder. Later on he took sannyasa and became Prabodhananda Sarasvati. At that time Gopala Bhatta… Actually, their family title was Bhatta, Bhattacarya. Bhattacarya is given title to the very learned brahmana. Cakravarti, Bhattacarya—these are brahmana’s title who are very learned, very influential. So Bhattacarya. So at that time Gopala Bhatta Gosvami was little boy. So Lord Caitanya stayed with this Venkata, Venkatanatha. His name was Venkata. Later on he became Prabodhananda Sarasvati.

So that boy became influenced and he wanted to go with Lord Caitanya. He was sannyasi. He was traveling. So Caitanya Mahaprabhu advised him, that “Your father and mother are still living. So you can come to me later on.” He was boy, only sixteen years old. So this boy, Gopala Bhatta, he, after the death of his father and mother, he went to Lord Caitanya, and He accepted him. And He handed over in charge of Rupa Gosvami, that “You treat this boy as your younger brother.” And he also became one of the six Gosvamis. The six Gosvamis… Rupa Gosvami is the, is the head actually. But Sanatana Gosvami being his elder brother, he was treating him as his spiritual master. So Rupa Gosvami, Sanatana Gosvami, and Gopala Bhatta Gosvami, and Raghunatha Bhatta Gosvami, and Raghunatha dasa Gosvami, and Jiva Gosvami. These six Gosvamis, they have given immense literature. And all of them established one temple in Vrndavana. You have seen, Kirtanananda Maharaja, the Radha-Ramana temple. Radha-Ramana temple, that is Gopala Bhatta Gosvami’s.

So that Prabodhananda Sarasvati (is) teaching us how to preach. In this age, simply by fighting, argument, it is very difficult to preach. Better to become humble and meek. Just like Prabodhananda Sarasvati is teaching us: dante nidhaya trnakam. In India there is a system to become humble. If you take one blade of grass in your, between your lips and approach somebody, it is to be understood that you are approaching with great humbleness. Therefore he said, dante nidhaya trnakam. Trnakam means blade of grass. Dante means teeth. Padayor nipatya: “And falling down on your feet.” Kaku-satam krtva: “And flattering you hundred times, ‘My dear sir, you are so great. You are so big. You are so learned. You are so rich. You are so beautiful,’ and everything,” although he may be not. So dante nidhaya trnakam padayor nipatya kaku-satam krtva ca. Satam. Satam means “Hundred times flattering, I have come to you to say something.” “Why you are so humble? What is the… What do you want to talk? ” “No, I am…” He sadhavah. “You are very religious man. You are very upright man, sadhavah. Very honest man, saintly man. Yes. But I request you that whatever you learned, please forget. That is my request.” [break]

Sakalam eva vihaya durad caitanya-candra-carane kurutanuragam. You just try to submit yourself on the lotus feet of Lord Caitanya. By His mercy you’ll find that, kaivalyam narakayate, you’ll find that to become one with the Supreme, it will appear to you just like hell. To merge into the Supreme, that is the highest ambition of the impersonalists. But if you submit yourself to the lotus feet of Caitanyacandra, then you’ll find that this conception is just like hell. Kaivalyam narakayate. Naraka means hell. You’ll find kaivalyam, to become one. And tridasa-purakasa-puspayate. Tri-dasa-pura means the planets, higher planets where demigods live. Thirty-three million demigods, there are at least thirty-three million planets. Tri-dasa-purakasa-puspayate. They are just like phantasmagoria.

The exact analogy of phantasma…, equivalent word in Sanskrit of phantasmagoria, which has no actual existence, is called akasa-puspa, “flower of the sky.” There is no flower in the sky, but you can say. Or in common Bengali words, “eggs of the horse.” Now, horse never gives eggs, but there are words like that. (chuckles) Just like Vivekananda has manufactured: daridra-narayana. How Narayana can be daridra? So it is something like horse eggs. You see? So these words are very… Tri-dasa-purakasa-puspayate. By the grace of Lord Caitanya you’ll find to merge into the effulgence, to become one with the Supreme will be considered as hell, actually. If you ask any pure devotee, “Do you want to merge into the existence, impersonal Brahman?” he’ll deny. If he has got little Krsna consciousness, he’ll deny, that “What is this merging? This is hellish. We want to dance with Krsna. Why shall I merge and lose my existence, individuality?” And karmis, they are trying to be elevated in the higher planets. Just like they are trying to go to the higher planets by sputniks, similarly, there are ritualistic ceremonies. Yanti deva-vrata devan [Bg. 9.25]. By performing all the ritualistic ceremonies, sacrifices, you can elevate yourself to the higher planets: yanti deva-vrata devan. That is another method. And this method also, another method, they want to go direct by machine. But that tendency is there everywhere, that “We may go to this sun planet, moon planet, this planet.”

But Prabodhananda Sarasvati, he says, (chuckling) “Oh, you are trying to go to other higher planets by your karma, by his work? Oh, this is just like horse egg. Huh? Why should you bother yourself?” Horse egg means it has no substance. As, like there is no existence of horse egg, similarly, even if you attain that higher planetary system, what do you gain by that? You don’t gain anything, because the four principles of material existence will continue there also. Birth, death, old age, and disease, you cannot stop. You may live for a greater period—that is possible in higher planets. But if you are simply satisfied only by living a bigger span of life, is that very success? Just stop death. That is success. To become very strong in body, that is not success. But either you become strong and weak, you have to die. There is no, I mean to say, excuse, because you are a strong man you will not die. Or because you are rich man you will not die. Because you are… No. Therefore Prabodhananda Sarasvati says, it is just like akasa-puspa, phantasmagoria.

So this is karmi, jnani. Jnani wants to merge, and karmi wants higher level, higher standard of life. That is karmi’s business. Karmis give in charity just to acquire pious result out of it so that after death he can be elevated to the Svargaloka, heavenly planets. So Prabodhananda Sarasvati says, “But by the mercy of Krsna, by the mercy of Lord Caitanya, this ambition to be elevated in higher planetary system will appear to be as phantasmagoria.” Akasa-puspayate. And this is karmis’ ambition, the jnanis’ ambition. Then yogis. The yogis’ ambition is siddhi, or eight kinds of success. A yogi can become lighter than the cotton swab. He can become smaller than the atom. Anima, laghima, prapti, siddhi, isita, vasita. There are so many yogic perfections. And that is, of course, perfection. Nobody… It is not very easily gone to that perfectional stage. Generally, people try by practicing yoga to control the senses and the mind. That is general practice.

So Prabodhananda Sarasvati says that durdanta indriya-kala-sarpa-patali protkhata-damstrayate. Why you should be afraid of your senses? Why you are so much busy to try to control the senses? The senses become… How? Why not controlled? He says that senses are just like serpents. Durdanta indriya-kala-sarpa-patali. These senses are just like snakes. Snakes are always dangerous because as soon as he touches like this, immediately death. Poisonous snake. You cannot distinguish who is not poisonous. Therefore snake is always horrible. Just like the other day you found out one snake in the brahmacari’s house. So Prabodhananda Sarasvati says, “Yes, snake is very fierce and horrible. But if you know that the snake has no poison, his poison teeth has been broken…” Snake has also use for human being. There are expert snake charmer who take the snake and take out the poisonous teeth, and that poison is used for so many medicinal purpose. So poison is also used for human benefit if one knows.

So Prabodhananda Sarasvati, he said, these indriyas, the senses, are just like snakes. Our senses are acting just like snakes. It is, as soon as it touches, there is some danger. Sense gratification means you are creating some danger, some future danger. That’s all. We should always remember. All our troubles and miseries are due to sense gratification. They are always troublesome. The yoga system means yoga indriya-samyama. Yoga means controlling the senses. That is the first principle. Prabodhananda Sarasvati said that “Yes, it is admitted that the senses are just like snakes. But if you break the poisonous teeth, then there is no danger. There is no… They have no more fears.” A snake without poison, a child may be afraid of, “There is a snake.” But if a man knows that this snake is here but there is no poisonous teeth, it is broken, then there is no question of fearfulness. Otherwise, it is ordinary, insignificant… Just like reptile, something, or worm, or microbes. So he said… So that means he answers to the jnanis, to the yogis, to the karmis: durdanta indriya-kala-sarpa-patali protkhata. Protkhata, extracted. The teeth is extracted. Protkhata. Protkhata. Damstrayate. Damstra means teeth. Taken away. So there is no cause of… Durdanta indriya-kala-sarpa-patali protkhata-damstrayate visvam purna-sukhayate.

Everyone is facing the problem of material world, so many problems. But if you take shelter of Lord Caitanya, or Krsna consciousness… Lord Caitanya means Krsna consciousness. Krsna-varnam tvisakrsnam [SB 11.5.32]. Lord Caitanya means Krsna conscious. Then visvam purna, you’ll find there is no problem. The world is very happy place. A devotee finds a very nice place. Just like here in New Vrindaban, those who are karmis, oh, they’ll find, “Oh, it is a nonsense place. There is no amenities, modern amenities. There is so much trouble. There is no nice bathroom. There is no water supply.” But devotees, they are finding, “Oh, it is very nice place.” So just you… Similarly, widely you take, all the karmis, they are faced with so many problems. But a devotee, those who have taken to Krsna consciousness, they have no problem. Visvam purna-sukhayate. And vidhi-mahendradis ca kitayate. And for them, all these big, big men, may be very big to others, but for the devotees they’re just like worms and germs and ordinary flies.

Just like we sometimes criticize big men. Hm? So on what strength? That strength is because we have taken shelter of Krsna consciousness, Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Otherwise, any ordinary man can criticize. Just like the Consulate General in San Francisco, he was speaking to me that “Swamiji, you have called Maharishi a rascal?” “Yes. Yes. I may have called. What is that?” So the people, a man who is worshiped by so many people we call rascal? On what strength? The strength is this Krsna consciousness. We can prove that he is rascal. I am not speaking; Krsna is speaking. Krsna says in the Bhagavad-gita, na mam duskrtino mudhah [Bg. 7.15]. Mudha means rascal. So I am repeating Krsna’s word. Anyone who does not surrender unto Krsna, he is rascal. So we can quote from Bhagavad-gita. If somebody brings case against us, so we can freely say that “I am not speaking. It is said in the Bhagavad-gita. You just bring libel case against Bhagavad-gita. Why you are troubling me?” (laughter) Bhagavad-gita says anyone who does not surrender to Krsna… Na mam duskrtino mudhah mam… Na mam duskrtino mudhah prapadyante naradhamah. He’s not only rascal, he’s the lowest of the mankind. And if you say, “Oh, he is very learned scholar.” Oh, mayayapahrta-jnanah. His knowledge has been taken away by maya. Asuram bhavam asritah. Simply he’s defying God. Krsna means God. “I am God,” that is asuric.

So for a devotee, there is no need of controlling senses. It automatically becomes controlled. Just like we have taken the vow we are not going to eat anything except krsna-prasada. Oh, the sense is already controlled. There is no question of asking a devotee, “You don’t drink, don’t this, don’t this, don’t this.” So many don’ts. Simply by accepting krsna-prasadam, all don’ts there, already there. And it becomes very easier. Others, if one is requested that “You don’t smoke,” it will be very difficult job for him. For a devotee, he can give up at any moment. He has no problem. Therefore the same example, that these senses are very strong undoubtedly, as strong as the snake. But if you break the poison teeth, the poison teeth, then it is no more fierceful. Similarly, if you engage your senses in Krsna, no more controlling. It is already controlled. Protkhata-damstrayate visvam purna-sukhayate.

And the whole world is problem for ordinary persons, but to us it is not problem. Because we see everything Krsna’s. If there is problem, it is Krsna’s problem. Why my problem? Krsna can know how to solve problem. So we have no problem practically. Krsna’s problem. Krsna will see to it. Just like Arjuna was encouraged that nimitta-matram bhava savyasacin. “You don’t worry about your victory. I have already arranged.” So we should have such faith and conviction and let us try. Let us do very sincerely and seriously. Then everything Krsna will do. I haven’t got to do anything.

Just like our Krsna consciousness movement, it is improving. Krsna giving us all facilities. We have no power. But we are trying to discharge the duty sincerely. Then it is everything. There is no problem. Visvam purna-sukhayate. And vidhi-mahendradis ca kitayate. And when a person is fully Krsna conscious, he knows what is what. He knows what this learned scholar is. He knows what is this. Vidhi-mahendra. What to speak of ordinary scholars and big men. Vidhi, vidhi means Lord Brahma, and mahendra means the king of heaven. So they are also treated as ordinary human being or ordinary living entities. They are not given any importance. “Well, as…” Abrahma-bhuvana-stham. Abrahma. For a devotee, as Brahma is also living entity, a small ant is also living entity, all Krsna’s parts and parcels. They have no quarrel with anybody. As Krsna’s part and parcel, we offer respect to everyone. So not that they are amazed with the greatness of a living entity. He thinks that his greatness is due to Krsna’s favor. Because Krsna said in the Bhagavad-gita, yad yad vibhutimat sattvam tat tad eva mama tejo ’msa-sambhavam. Nobody can become great unless… Just like the sunshine. The sunshine, what is the sunshine? It is simply a partial reflection of Krsna’s brahmajyoti. Similarly anyone who is great in the estimation of this material world, there is some Krsna’s favor. That’s all. Yad yad vibhutimat sattvam tat tad eva mama tejo ’msa-sambhavam.

Just like in the Brahma-samhita, we are giving respect to all the demigods. We are giving respect to Lord Siva, we are giving respect to Durga, we are giving respect to Ganesa, we are giving respect to the sun-god. They are very big demigods. Lord Siva, or Durga, Ganesa, and Brahma, and… We don’t disrespect. We give respect even to the ant. Why not to Lord Siva or Lord Brahma? They should have their due respect, but that does not mean we consider them as the Supreme Lord. That is the mistake of the karmis and the impersonalists. No. We know that nobody can be greater than or equal to Krsna or visnu-tattva, Narayana.

yas tu narayanam devam brahma-rudradi-daivataih samatvenaiva vikseta sa pasandi bhaved dhruvam

It is said in the Vaisnava Tantra, that anyone who, I mean to say, considers on the equal level Narayana with such great demigods like Brahma and Siva, brahma-rudradi-daivataih, such big demigods, sa pasandi bhaved dhruvam. He becomes pasandi. Pasandi means atheist. Atheist will compare that the Supreme Lord and other demigods are on the equal footing. No. They are never. Nobody can be greater or equal with the Supreme Lord. Therefore vidhi-mahendradis ca kitayate.

visvam purna-sukhayate vidhi-mahendradis ca kitayate yat karunya-kataksa-vaibhavavatam tam gauram eva stumah

These things happen simply by little merciful glance by Lord Caitanya upon us. Simply if Lord Caitanya approves our activity, “Well, this man is doing nice,” oh, then you get all the success. Simply if He approves. Yat karunya-kataksa-vaibhavavatam tam gauram eva stumah.

Therefore our point was how to please the Supreme Lord. This is the way. If you want to please Krsna, you spread Krsna consciousness. That is the point Narada is pointing out to Vyasadeva. Yatha dharmadayas cartha muni-varyanukirtitah. Muni-varya. Muni-varya means he was the greatest of all thoughtful men. Muni. Muni means those who are thoughtful, and varya means the greatest. So he says, yatha dharmadayas cartha muni-varyanukirtitah. “As you have described in all the Vedas and Upanisads about religiosity or economic development or the procedure of sense gratification or merging into the Supreme, in that way you have not described the glories of the Lord. You have given more importance to the material activities.”

Just like in the Vedas there are ritualistic ceremony of performing great sacrifices. What is the meaning of that sacrifice? That means you get a very opulent position in your next life or in this life. So people are attached to such thing. Veda-vada-ratah partha nanyad astiti vadinah. Bhagavad-gita, you’ll find. People are very much attracted by these ritualistic ceremonies. Not only the followers of the Vedas; in every religion, if you perform some ritualistic ceremony, oh, they are very much attracted. And if you simply say, “Let us chant Hare Krsna,” they will not be very much attracted. So veda-vada-ratah partha nanyad astiti vadinah. So we should not be like that. Our business is how to glorify the Supreme Lord, how to glorify Krsna. Then all success is there. That will be instructed by Narada Muni to Vyasadeva.

yatha dharmadayas cartha muni-varyanukirtitah na tatha vasudevasya mahima hy anuvarnitah

Tatha vasudevasya mahima na hy anuvarnitah. Na tatha. Na tatha vasudevasya mahima hy anuvarnitah. “You have taken much trouble about these ritualistic performances in the Vedas and other literatures, but you have not taken much trouble to describe the glories of Vasudeva.” Vasudevah sarvam iti [Bg. 7.19]. “Although in the Bhagavad-gita you have seen that everything is Vasudeva…, vasudeva-para makhah vasudeva-param jnanam, but still you have not described about, much about Vasudeva.” Na tatha vasudevasya mahima hy anuvarnitah. “You have not described very nicely about the glories of Vasudeva.”

All right. (end)