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The Nectar of Devotion
Vrndavana, November 5, 1972
Pradyumna: (reading:) "...committed criminal acts but is not yet arrested for them. Now, as soon as he is detected, arrest is awaiting for him. Is awaiting him. Similarly, for some of our sinful activities we are awaiting distresses in the future, and for others, which are mature, we are suffering at the present moment. In this way..."
Prabhupada: Yes. This is the chain of accepting different types of bodies, one after another. According to the sinful activities. On the total, without being sinful, nobody accepts this material body. Because in the Bhagavad-gita we understand: yesam anta-gatam papam, "One who has finished the reaction of his sinful activities," te dvandva-moha-nirmukta... [Bg. 7.28]. Yesam anta-gatam papam jananam punya-karmanam... Punya-karma. Punya-karma means the sublime punya-karma is devotional service. Sravanam kirtanam visnoh smaranam pada-sevanam [SB 7.5.23]. This is the topmost punya-karma. Because, as it is stated in the Bhagavata, srnvatam sva-kathah krsnah punya-sravana-kirtanah [SB 1.2.17]. Simply if we hear about Krsna, that is punya. Even you do not understand, do not take it very seriously, if we simply give aural reception to the words of Krsna, that activity itself is punya. Punya-sravana kirtanah. So one who has got, I mean, advanced in hearing about Krsna, that is the result of multiforms of multivarieties of pious activities. Vasudeva-katha-rucih [SB 1.2.16]. Vasudeva-katha-rucih is the resultant action... Krta-punya-punjah [SB 10.12.11]. These words are used. Just like when the cowherds boys were playing with Krsna, Sukadeva Gosvami said that "These boys are krta-punya-punjah. Heaps of pious activities they have performed; therefore they have got this chance of playing personally with the Supreme Personality of Godhead."
So, so long we are tinged with sinful activities, we have to accept different varieties of body, either the body of Lord Brahma or the body of an ant, indragopa, a small microbic insect, yas tv indragopam athavendram aho sva-karma [Bs. 5.54]. From this indragopa, the microscopic insect which is called indragopa insect, from this indragopa insect, to the real Indra, the King of Heaven, everyone is suffering or enjoying—actually it is suffering—the resultant action of his karma. It doesn't matter what kind of body a living entity has got, but the body itself is the symptom, is the sign that one is sinful. This is the conclusion of the sastra. Because as soon as one is free from sinful activities, at that time, he goes back to home, back to Godhead. Tyaktva deham punar janma naiti mam eti [Bg. 4.9]. So our, this material body is achieved due to sinful activities. And sinful activities are performed due to ignorance. Therefore knowledge is essential. Jnana-vairagya. These two things are essential in human life: knowledge and renunciation. Renunciation means sinful activities. Go on.
Pradyumna: "In this way there is a chain of sinful activities and their concomitant distresses, and the conditioned soul is suffering life after life due to these sins. He is suffering in the present life the results of sinful activities from his past life, and he is meanwhile creating further suffering for his future life. Mature sinful activities are exhibited if one is suffering from some chronic disease, if one is suffering from some legal implication, or if one is born in a low and degraded family, or if one is uneducated or very ugly."
Prabhupada: Hmmm. So the soul is within this body, encaged. Dehino 'smin yatha dehe [Bg. 2.13]. Due to ignorance, he is committing... Say, for, in our eating process, we are eating so many things out of ignorance which we should not eat, and creating the sinful reaction. Nana yoni bhraman kare, kadarya bhaksana kare. Narottama dasa Thakura says things which are not eatables, we eat, and we circumambulate various types of body. Nana yoni bhraman kare, kadarya bhaksana kare. Just like the hog is eating stool, kadarya, a very abominable thing, but it is eating. Similarly, many other forms of body. You are eating very abominable things on account of your particular type of body, and this is due to ignorance. And this ignorance is our greatest enemy. The human form of life is meant for acquiring knowledge, not to keep one in ignorance. Tamasi ma jyotir gamah. That is the Vedic injunction. "Don't keep yourself in darkness," darkness of ignorance. But jyotir gamah: "Go to the light." That is the Vedic injunction.
So the best knowledge, He's giving, Krsna Himself: Bhagavad-gita. He's coming personally to give knowledge. But we are so unfortunate, we are not accepting the knowledge given by Krsna. We are hankering after some other knowledge given by some defective human being. A human being cannot give us any perfect knowledge. Therefore all the scientists' statements, all the philosophers' statements, they are simply theories; they are not fact. Because the knowledge is not perfect. Perfect knowledge can be had from one who is not defective. Defective means generally a conditioned soul has four defects: he commits mistake, he is illusioned, he has got a cheating propensity, and his senses are imperfect. The senses, we are acquiring knowledge through our senses, and if our senses are imperfect, how we can acquire perfect knowledge? Just like we are trying to see the planetary system through microscope or binocular, telescope, but the telescope machine is manufactured by a person who is, whose senses are defective. So through the telescope, how you can have perfect knowledge? Therefore one astronomer is placing some theory. After some years, that is made null and void; another theory is presented. Because everyone's knowledge is imperfect. So we cannot expect perfect knowledge from the imperfect person. So our process of knowledge is different. Our pro..., Vedic process of knowledge is,
One has to accept a guru, a spiritual master, who has received knowledge from another perfect spiritual master. Just like Krsna is the origin, perfect spiritual master, guru. So Krsna, what Krsna said, was realized by Arjuna, directly. Therefore if we receive knowledge from Arjuna or his disciplic succession, then our knowledge is perfect. Krsna..., Arjuna accepted Krsna as the Supreme Brahman: param brahma param dhama pavitram paramam bhavan [Bg. 10.12]. So if we accept the version of Arjuna, that Krsna is Param Brahman, He's the Supreme Person, He's the origin of everything, then our knowledge is perfect. I may be imperfect, but because I receive knowledge from a perfect person, my knowledge is perfect. This is called parampara system.
So in order to dissipate our ignorance, we should receive perfect knowledge. Then we can stop our sinful activities. Therefore Bhagavad-gita, Bhagavan says, Krsna says, janma karma me divyam. Krsna appears, Krsna lives here, He teaches, He acts. If we simply try to understand Krsna from the devotee of Krsna, then we become perfect, so much so that after giving up this body... Tyaktva deham punar janma naiti... [Bg. 4.9]. Without being perfect, without being free from all sinful reactions, we have to undergo the tribulation of accepting different types of body. But as soon as we become perfect through the perfect knowledge, then automatically we become uncontaminated from this material world and we become liberated. Liberated means, as I have several times explained, to be situated in his original position. Just like a, a person gets fever. When his fever is subsided, he's liberated, he's called liberated from the fever. Similarly, when we have perfect knowledge... What is that perfect knowledge? The perfect knowledge: to understand that "I am eternal servant of Krsna." This is perfect knowledge. This is perfect knowledge. Jivera svarupa haya nityera krsnera dasa [Cc. Madhya 20.108]. One has to understand this fact, that "I am not Krsna. I am not like Krsna. I am not equal to Krsna. I cannot become Krsna. I am Krsna's eternal servant." This is taught by Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Gopi-bhartur pada-kamalayoh dasa-dasanudasah [Cc. Madhya 13.80]. He, Caitanya Mahaprabhu, says, "I am not a brahmana. I am not a sudra. I am not a brahmacari. I am not a sannyasi." In this way... Because we identify with the varnasrama-dharma: "I am brahmana," "I am sannyasi," "I am brahmacari," "I am grhastha," "I am ksatriya." These are our designations. But when we become designation-free, then "I am not brahmana, I am not brahmacari, I am not this, I am not that. I am simply pure servant of Krsna." This is knowledge. Our otherwise, anything we identify, that is ignorance. This is knowledge.
So... And when we come to this knowledge, that "I am eternal servant of Krsna," then I am liberated. Muktir hitva anyatha rupam svarupena vyavasthitih [SB 2.10.6]. Hitva anyatha rupam. I am accepting a different type of body and different type of position, and I am identifying myself with that particular position. That is my ignorance. Although I am acting just like a perfect brahmana or perfect ksatriya or perfect vaisya, still, I am imperfect, because my perfection is not to act as a vaisya, brahmana, ksatriya, American, Indian, but to act as servant of Krsna. That is liberation. That is liberation. Sarvopadhi-vinirmuktam tat-paratvena nirmalam [Cc. Madhya 19.170]. Nirmalam means liberation. That nirmalam means sarvopadhi-vinirmuktam. The Vaisnava process is to become nirmalam. Tat-paratvena. A real, pure Vaisnava simply identifies himself as a servant of Krsna; therefore he's nirmalam, he's liberated. He does not identify himself as a ksatriya, brahmana, American, Indian. No. That is not his position. But so long I stick to this designation, I am not nirmala, I am samala, "with dirty things." So we have to be relieved from these dirty things and come to the original position of Krsna consciousness. Then our sinful activities and its reaction will be counteracted. Go on.
Pradyumna: "There are many results of past sinful activities for which we are suffering at the present moment, and we may be suffering in the future due to our present sinful activities, but all of these reactions to sinful deeds can immediately be stopped if we take to Krsna consciousness."
Pradyumna: "As evidence for this..."
Prabhupada: Krsna consciousness, if we take to Krsna consciousness, automatically we become immune from sinful activities. The devotional service... The mind, being engaged on the lotus feet of Krsna, as Ambarisa Maharaja did: sa vai manah krsna-padaravindayor vacamsi vaikuntha-gunanuvarnane... [SB 9.4.18]. Ambarisa Maharaja was very responsible emperor of the world, but he fixed up his mind on the lotus feet of Krsna and he engaged his words simply: vaikuntha-gunanuvarnane, simply describing the qualities, the transcendental qualities of Krsna. He used his eyes to see the Deity, he used his legs to go to the temple, he used his hands for cleansing the temple, he used his nose for smelling the flower and tulasi offered to Krsna, he used his tongue for tasting Krsna-prasadam. In this way, he engaged all his senses in the service of the Lord. So there was no chance of committing sinful activities by his body. It is, it can be done by everyone. Everyone can install Deity at his home and regularly worship the Deity according to the injunction of the sastras and spiritual master and eat prasadam and hear Vaik..., Srimad-Bhagavatam, chant and speak Hare Krsna. This is simple life. And one can become immune from all sinful reactions. The simple thing. Go on.
Pradyumna: "As evidence for this, Rupa Gosvami quotes from the Srimad-Bhagavatam, Eleventh Canto, Fourteenth Chapter, 18th verse. This verse is in connection with Lord Krsna's instruction to Uddhava, where He says, 'My dear Uddhava, devotional service unto Me is just like a blazing fire, which can burn into ashes unlimited fuel supplied to it.' The purport is that as the blazing fire can burn any amount of fuel to ashes, so devotional service to the Lord in Krsna consciousness can burn up all the fuel of sinful activities. For example, in the Gita, Arjuna thought that fighting was a sinful activity, but Krsna engaged him on the battlefield under His order, and so the fighting became devotional service. Therefore, Arjuna was not subjected to any sinful reaction."
Prabhupada: Yes. So the example is that the, in the fire, you go on giving fuel perpetually, it will burn into ashes. Similarly, it doesn't matter. To become sinful... Without Krsna consciousness, everyone is sinful. So to become sinful is not disqualification, because everyone is sinful. But if one takes to Krsna consciousness, Krsna consciousness is just like the fire, and the sinful activities are just like wood. But when the wood is in touch with the fire, so the fire would burn all the woods, fuel, into ashes. But we should not... Once we take to Krsna consciousness, we should stop the pillars of sinful activities. Whatever we did in our past life, that is excused, but if we take to Krsna consciousness, and if we go on with our sinful activities, that will not help us. Just like the same fire: you take the fuel and add to the fire, it will burn into ashes. But, at the same time, if you pour some water also, then it will be useless. Similarly, our past sinful activities, that can be burned into ashes provided we don't add any more. Don't take it: "Now it will burn into ashes. So go on, this business and that business." No. That business means pouring water into the fire. It will not burn. Go on.
Pradyumna: "Srila Rupa Gosvami quotes another verse from the Third Canto of Srimad-Bhagavatam, Thirty-third Chapter, 6th verse, in which Devahuti addresses her son, Kapiladeva, and says, 'My dear Lord, there are nine different kinds of devotional service, beginning from hearing and chanting. Anyone who hears about Your pastimes, who chants about Your glories, who offers You obeisances, who thinks of You, and in this way executes any of the nine kinds of devotional service—even if he is born in a family of dog-eaters (the lowest grade of mankind)—becomes immediately qualified to perform sacrifices.' "
Prabhupada: Yes. Svado 'pi sadyah savanaya kalpate. This is the verse. Actually we have seen it. Last time, when I was coming via Philippines, so we have got a center there, and it is very nicely organized within six months by one of our devotees, Siddha-svarupa, Siddha-svarupananda Maharaja, and his colleague. So it is very nicely organized. And they are actually dog-eaters. These Philippines, they're dog-eaters. In these parts of the world, the Koreans, the Philippines, even the Chinese, some of the Japanese, they're dog-eaters. But even though they are dog-eaters, they attended the meeting and chanted with us so nicely, better than a so-called Vaisnava in India. Yes. They were so nice. It is practically seen. So that is also stated in the, confirmed in the Bhagavad-gita. Svado 'pi sadyah savanaya kalpate. If one dog-eater, a person born in the family of dog-eaters... Because the dog-eaters are considered lowest of the human kind, candala, sva-paca. In many places it is said. Aho bata svapaco 'pi gariyan yaj-jihvagre nama tubhyam. Sva-paca. Svapaca means dog-eaters. They also become glorious provided they chant offenselessly the Hare Krsna mantra. Aho bato svapaco 'to gariyan yaj-jihvagre nama tubhyam.
So Caitanya Mahaprabhu has given us... It is in the sastra. Caitanya Mahaprabhu has pointed out... The acarya's business... Everything is there in the sastra. Acarya does not invent anything. That is not acarya. Acarya simply points out, "Here is the thing." Just like in the darkness of night we cannot see anything perfectly or cannot see anything, but the, when there is sunrise, the sunrise, effect of sunrise is that we can see things as they are. The things are not manufactured. There is already... The things are al... The houses, the town and the everything is there, but when there is sunrise we can see everything nicely. Similarly, acarya, or incarnation, they do not create anything. They simply give the light to see things as they are. So Caitanya Mahaprabhu pointed out this verse from Brhad-naradiya Purana. The, the verse was already in the Brhad-naradiya Purana.
harer nama harer nama harer nama iva kevalam
kalau nasty eva nasty eva nasty eva gatir anyatha
[Cc. Adi 17.21]
This verse was already there in the Brhad-naradiya Purana, the indication of our activities in the age of Kali. Caitanya Mahaprabhu, He pointed out. Although He is Krsna Himself—He could manufacture so many things—but He did not do so. That is acarya. Acarya will not manufacture any new type of religion, a new type of phrase of Hare Krsna mantra. That is not potent. The... Just like Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. This is in the sastra. So that is potential. Now if we add and subtract something from these sixteen words, that is my manufacture. That will have not the potency. They do not understand it. They are thinking if they can manufacture some new line, adding with Hare Krsna, then he becomes particularly noted. But he spoils the whole thing. That is the... He does not make any new thing. The new thing he does, he spoils the whole thing. So Caitanya Mahaprabhu never did so, although He's Krsna Himself. He stuck to the point of sastra. Krsna, He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He also indicates: yah sastra-vidhim utsrjya vartate kama-karatah na siddhim savapnoti [Bg. 16.23]. He indicates that nobody can give up the injunction of the sastra. Brahma-sutra-padais caiva hetumadbhir viniscitaih [Bg. 13.5]. Krsna says. He can give. Whatever He says, that is sastra, that is Veda. But still, He gives reference to the sastra.
So acarya's duty is to point out the sastric injunction. They're already there in the Vedas. His duty is... Just like there are so many medicines. If you go to a drug shop, all of them are medicines, but the experienced physician, he gives you a medicine which is particularly suitable for you. You cannot say, "Sir, why you are selecting medicine? You can give any one bottle." That is nonsense. Not any one. The particular body, a particular bottle, and a particular medicine which is suitable for you, the experienced physician gives you. He's acarya. So you cannot say that "Everything is medicine; whichever bottle I take, that's all right." No. That's not. This is going on. Yata mata tata patha. Why yata mata tata patha? The particular mata which is suitable for you at a particular time, that should be accepted, not any other mata. So similarly, in this age, in this Kali-yuga, where people are very short-living, duration of life is very short, they are unfortunate, they're very slow, and they take to unauthorized means of religious principles, they're prone to so many disturbances of life... Therefore this particular medicine for this age, as given by Caitanya Mahaprabhu:
harer nama harer nama harer namaiva kevalam
kalau nasty eva nasty eva nasty eva gatir anyatha
[Cc. Adi 17.21]
So we should take the instruction of Caitanya Mahaprabhu, who has especially incarnated Himself in this age, Kali-yuga. Kalau sankirtana-prayair yajanti hi su-medhasah. This is the sastric injunction.
yajanti hi su-medhasah
This is the injunction in the sastra, that this form of the Lord, who is accompanied by His associate... Sangopangastra-parsadam. So Caitanya Mahaprabhu is always associated with Sri Advaita Prabhu, Sri Nityananda Prabhu, Sri Gadadhara Prabhu, Sri Srivasa Prabhu. Therefore the process of worship is sri-krsna-caitanya prabhu-nityananda sri-advaita gadadhara srivasadi-gaura-bhakta-vrnda. That is perfect process. Not to cut short. No. As it is indicated. This is indication in the Srimad-Bhagavatam. Krsna-varnam tvisakrsnam sangopangastra... [SB 11.5.32]. So when we have to worship Lord Caitanya, we worship with His associates. Sri-krsna-caitanya prabhu-nityananda sri-advaita gadadhara srivasadi-gaura-bhakta-vrnda. No cut-short method. So that is sastric injunction. So in order to get rid of the sinful activities of this age, it is already prescribed in the sastras and confirmed by the greatest authority, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Ceto-darpana-marjanam bhava-maha-davagni-nirvapanam [Cc. Antya 20.12]. So we should all take to this maha-mantra, chant
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