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Garden Discussion on
Bhagavad-gita Sixteenth Chapter
June 26, 1976, New Vrindaban
Dhrstadyumna: "Performance of sacrifice, study of the Vedas, austerity and simplicity, nonviolence, truthfulness, freedom from anger, renunciation, tranquillity, aversion to fault-finding, compassion and freedom from covetousness, gentleness, modesty and steady determination, vigor, forgiveness, fortitude, cleanliness, freedom from envy and the passion for honor—these transcendental qualities, O son of Bharata, belong to godly men endowed with divine nature." (purport) "In the beginning of the Fifteenth Chapter the banyan tree of this material world was explained. The extra roots coming out of it were compared to the activities of the living entities, some auspicious, some inauspicious. In the Ninth Chapter also the devas, or godly, and asuras, the ungodly or demons, were explained. Now according to Vedic rites, activities in the mode of goodness are considered auspicious for progress on the path of liberation, and such activities are known as daivi prakrti, transcendental by nature. Those who are situated in the transcendental nature make progress..."
Prabhupada: The defect of modern civilization is that they have no idea about liberation. Neither they have any idea about transmigration of the soul. From the very root, they are defective. They are thinking... Just like animals. Dog is thinking, "I am this dog. I am born dog and I'll die, that's finished, everything." He cannot think that "I can become also man." He cannot think that. So the modern civilization, they cannot think even that there is next life and we can go... They have got the tendency to go to the higher planetary system, moon. Artificially, they are trying, but they do not know. Just like they can go to any planet, sarvaga. Yanti deva-vrata devan pitrn yanti pitr-vratah [Bg. 9.25]. They do not know this, although they have got the tendency to go. But they do not know how to go, positively what are the position of the different planets or Vaikunthaloka or liberation or next life, transmigration—nothing of the sort. Simply like dogs. Now consider this point, whether I'm speaking right or wrong. I know I am speaking the right thing, but if you deny, then you talk amongst yourselves.
Devotee (1): Srila Prabhupada, they think that liberation means that you can do anything you like, that you are free from any moral or ethic...
Prabhupada: That is the rascaldom. That is rascaldom. Just like in prison house, if a prisoner thinks that he can do whatever he likes, that is rascaldom. That is going on. The modern civilization is rascaldom. He is seeing practically that he's under the control of material nature, and still he thinks that "I can do whatever I like." This is rascaldom.
Pusta Krsna: The Christian conception of salvation was more one of being saved from hell rather than an attraction for some transcendental reality.
Prabhupada: Christian conception... Mass of people, they do not know what is hell because they are living in the hell already. That was the story. When hell was described, he was undisturbed, but when he was informed that there was no newspaper in hell then he became... "Horrible. How one can live there without newspaper?" So so far hellish condition is there now... Pradyumna, where is Pradyumna Maharaja?
Kuladri: He is showering.
Prabhupada: He was describing about that factory. So they are working in the factory, what do they care for hell? Even if we go to hell, they will get some good salary, that's all. Money required, then I can drink nicely. The standard is there. Now this qualification, abhayam sattva-samsuddhir, what is that? It does not strike them at all, these qualities are high qualities. Is it not? This is the... What is the translation?
Dhrstadyumna: "Fearlessness, purification of one's existence."
Prabhupada: And who is fearless? Everyone is fearful. And fearlessness is good quality, who understands it? Ahara-nidra-bhaya-maithunam ca, this is animal life. To eat, sleep, sex and become fearful, that is animal life. And one has to become fearless. So who cares for it? They are thinking to become fearless means to keep gun. That is also one way. Then, fearlessness and...?
Dhrstadyumna: "Purification of one's existence."
Prabhupada: That they do not know. When they fall sick, then they want to purify, go to the physician, but his whole life is impure, he doesn't know. Because it is impure, therefore they are subjected to birth, death, old age and disease. That they do not know. But if you scrutinizingly examine all these different items of advancement of life, the modern man has no idea. That is being explained in this chapter. Therefore there is no such education, neither people are interested. Now higher art classes in the colleges, universities, no student will join. They are simply learning technological process. Go on.
Dhrstadyumna: "Those who are situated in the transcendental nature make progress on the path of liberation. For those who are acting in the modes of passion and ignorance, on the other hand, there is no possibility of liberation. Either they will have to remain in this material..."
Prabhupada: They say "What we care for liberation? It is troublesome. You have to sacrifice so many things. We don't want liberation. That is nonsensical. You keep your liberation. We don't want." This is the problem. As you said, liberation means "Whatever I like I will do." But that is, actually, he cannot do that. But he's thinking that he's liberated. Can he do that, whatever he likes? But still he's... Therefore rascal. Dog's life. The dog is jumping, barking, that "I'm free now." But he forgets that as soon as the master will call and chain him, he'll do it. But he's thinking that "I'm liberated." This is the problem. What is his liberation? He does not know what is liberation.
Dhrstadyumna: "Either they will have to remain in this material world as human beings or they will descend among the species of the animals or even lower life forms."
Prabhupada: Ah, they will say, "All bogus. This life, finished. I am free." That is the problem. This is their position.
Dhrstadyumna: We were finding, Srila Prabhupada, that they could not defeat varnasrama dharma. They had no society like varnasrama. In the colleges, they could not understand this body, but we showed them how the society could be arranged harmoniously, and they had no alternative. Their ideas on how to structure society for everyone's happiness, they have no good ideas. So that preaching platform they could understand, varnasrama.
Prabhupada: They'll understand. I'm just pointing out the difficulties of your preaching. You'll have to face all these difficulties. They're like cats and dogs. They are not even human beings. Therefore the business is little hard job. You have to deal with cats and dogs. But still there is hope, because they have got this human form of life. There is hope. It is not hopeless. Don't be disappointed, but this is the job. You have to meet with cats and dogs. That is my point. When you go to preach you must know that "I've come to preach among cats and dogs, and I have to deal with them carefully; otherwise, they will bark." (laughter) Therefore I wrote that poetry in disappointment before entering in your country, that "What they will understand, this philosophy?" Hmm, go on.
Dhrstadyumna: "In this Sixteenth Chapter the Lord explains both the transcendental nature and its attendant qualities as well as the demoniac nature and its qualities. He also explains the advantages and disadvantages of these qualities. The word abhijatasya in reference to one born of transcendental qualities or godly tendencies is very significant. To beget a child in a godly atmosphere is known in the Vedic scriptures as garbhadhana-samskara. If the parents want a child in the godly qualities they should follow the ten principles of the human being. In Bhagavad-gita we have studied also before that sex life for begetting a good child is Krsna Himself. Sex life is not condemned provided the process is used in Krsna consciousness. Those who are in Krsna consciousness at least should not beget children like cats and dogs but should beget them so they may become Krsna conscious after birth. That should be the advantage of children born of a mother or father absorbed in Krsna consciousness. The social institution known as varnasrama dharma, the institution dividing society into four divisions or castes, is not meant to divide human society according to birth. Such divisions are in terms of educational qualifications. They are to keep the society in a state of peace and prosperity. The qualities mentioned herein are explained as transcendental qualities meant for making a person progress in spiritual understanding so he can get liberated from the material world."
Prabhupada: So where is that institution to train people to acquire these transcendental qualities? There is no such institution. We are attempting to qualify the man in transcendental qualities. This is the only institution. Otherwise, where it is? I don't think, throughout the whole world, there is any institution to train the students in transcendental qualities. Who cares for transcendental qualities? Go on.
Dhrstadyumna: "In the varnasrama institution the sannyasi, or the person in the renounced order of life, is considered to be the head or the spiritual master of all the social statuses and orders. A brahmana is considered to be the spiritual master of the three other sections of society, namely the ksatriya, the vaisya and the sudra. But a sannyasi, who is on the top of the institution, is considered to be the spiritual master of the brahmanas also. For a sannyasi the first qualification should be fearlessness. Because a sannyasi has to be alone without any support or guarantee of support, he has simply to depend on the mercy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. If he thinks 'After leaving my connections, who will protect me?' he should not accept the renounced order of life. One must be fully convinced that Krsna, or the Supreme Personality of Godhead in His localized aspect as Paramatma, is always within, and He is seeing everything, and that He always knows what one intends to do. One must have this firm conviction that Krsna as Paramatma will take care of a soul surrendered unto Him. 'I shall never be alone,' one should think..."
Prabhupada: Hmm. Don't divert your attention.
Dhrstadyumna: " 'I shall never be alone,' one should think. 'Even if I live in the darkest regions of a forest, I shall be accompanied by Krsna, and He will give me all protection.' That conviction is called abhayam, 'without fear.' This state of mind is necessary for a person in the renounced order of life. Then he has to purify his existence. There are so many rules and regulations to be followed in the renounced order of life. Most important of all, a sannyasi is strictly forbidden to have any intimate relationship with a woman. He is even forbidden to talk with a woman in a secluded place. Lord Caitanya was an ideal sannyasi, and when He was at Puri His feminine devotees could not even come near to offer their respects. They were advised to bow down from a distant place. This is not a sign of hatred for women as a class, but it is a stricture imposed on a sannyasi not to have close connections with women. One has to follow the rules and regulations of a particular status of life in order to purify his existence. For a sannyasi, intimate relations with a woman and possessions of wealth for sense gratification are strictly forbidden. The ideal sannyasi was Lord Caitanya Himself, and we can learn from His life that He was very strict in regards to women. Although He is considered to be the most liberal incarnation of Godhead, accepting the most fallen conditioned souls, He strictly followed the rules and regulations of the sannyasa order of life in connection with association with women. One of His personal associates, namely Chota Haridasa, was personally associated with Lord Caitanya along with His other confidential personal associates. But somehow or other this Chota Haridasa looked lustfully on a young woman, and Lord Caitanya was so strict that He at once rejected him from the society of His personal associates. Lord Caitanya said, 'For a sannyasi, or anyone who is aspiring to get out of the clutches of material nature and trying to elevate himself to the spiritual nature and go back to home, back to Godhead, for him, looking towards material possessions and women for sense gratification—not even enjoying them, but just looking toward them with such a propensity—is so condemned that he had better commit suicide before experiencing such illicit desires.' So these are the processes for purification. The next item is jnana-yoga-vyavasthitih: being engaged in the cultivation of knowledge. Sannyasi life is meant for distributing knowledge to the householders and others who have forgotten their real life of spiritual advancement. A sannyasi is supposed to beg from door to door for his livelihood, but that does not mean that he is a beggar. Humility is also one of the qualifications of a transcendentally situated person, and out of sheer humility the sannyasi goes from door to door, not exactly for the purpose of begging but to see the householders and awaken them to Krsna consciousness. This is the duty of a sannyasi. If he is actually advanced and so ordered by his spiritual master, he should preach Krsna consciousness with logic and understanding."
Prabhupada: As a gentleman, if you go to somebody's house, you require his permission, but India, still, a sannyasi doesn't require any permission. He can enter in any householder's house: "Mother, give me some food." This is the introduction. Not that he has gone there for food, but easy introduction. And generally the householder will receive a sannyasi, "Yes, Swamiji, come here, sit down." They will offer obeisances and then they begin talks. This is the meaning. Not that he is hankering after food. This is only introduction. He's not a beggar. But people take advantage of this dress because they think that "Without any work I can beg and live." That is going on in India. So many rascals, they are taking this sannyasi dress and living at the cost of others. Therefore people have become disgusted. They have no knowledge to preach. Yes, go on.
Dhrstadyumna: "If he is actually advanced and so ordered by his spiritual master, he should preach Krsna consciousness with logic and understanding. And if he is not so advanced, he should not accept the renounced order of life. But even if he has accepted the renounced order of life without sufficient knowledge, he should engage himself fully in hearing from a bona fide spiritual master to cultivate knowledge. A sannyasi, or one in the renounced order of life, must be situated in fearlessness, sattva-samsuddhih (purity), and jnana-yoga (knowledge). The next item is charity. Charity is meant for the householders. The householders should earn a livelihood by honorable means and spend fifty percent of their income to propagate Krsna consciousness all over the world. Thus a householder should give in charity to such institutional societies that are engaged in that way. Charity should be given to the right receiver. There are different kinds of charities, as will be explained later: charity in the modes of goodness, passion and ignorance. Charity in the mode of goodness is recommended by the scriptures, but charity in the modes of passion and ignorance is not recommended, because it is simply a waste of money. Charity should be given only to propagate Krsna consciousness all over the world. That is charity in the mode of goodness. Then as far as dama (self-control) is concerned, it is not only meant for other orders of religious society, but it is especially meant for the householder. Although he has a wife, the householder should not use his senses for sex life unnecessarily. There are restrictions for the householders even in sex life, which should only be engaged for the propagation of children. If he does not require children, he should not enjoy sex life with his wife. Modern society enjoys sex life with contraceptive methods or more abominable methods to avoid the responsibility of children. This is not in the transcendental quality, but it is demoniac. If anyone, even if he is a householder, wants to make progress in spiritual life, he must control his sex life and should not beget a child without the purpose of serving Krsna. If he is able to beget children who will be in Krsna consciousness, one can produce hundreds of children, but without this capacity one should not indulge only for sense pleasure. Sacrifice is another item to be performed by the householders, because sacrifices require a large amount of money. Other orders of life, namely the brahmacarya, the vanaprastha and sannyasa, have no money; they live by begging. So performance of different types of sacrifice is meant for the householder. They should perform agni-hotra sacrifices as enjoined in the Vedic literature, but such sacrifices at the present moment are very expensive, and it is not possible for any householder to perform them. The best sacrifice recommended in this age is called sankirtana-yajna, the chanting of Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare, this is the best and the most inexpensive sacrifice. Everyone can adopt it and derive benefit. So these three items, namely charity, sense control and performance of sacrifice, are meant for the householder. Then svadhyaya (Vedic study), and tapas (austerity), and arjavam (gentleness or simplicity) are meant for the brahmacarya, or student life. Brahmacaris should have no connection with women; they should live a life of celibacy and engage the mind in the study of Vedic literature for the cultivation of spiritual knowledge. This is called svadhyaya. Tapas, or austerity, is especially meant for the retired life. One should not remain a householder throughout his whole life; he must always remember that there are four divisions of life: brahmacarya, grhastha, vanaprastha and sannyasa. So after grhastha, householder life, one should retire. If one lives for a hundred years, one should spend twenty-five years in student life, twenty-five years in household life, twenty-five in retired life and twenty-five in the renounced order of life. These are the regulations of the Vedic religious discipline. A man retired from household life must practice austerities of the body, mind and tongue. That is tapasya. The entire varnasrama dharma society is meant for tapasya. Without tapasya, or austerity, no human being can get liberation. The theory that there is no need of austerity in life, that one can go on speculating and everything will be nice, is neither recommended in the Vedic literature nor in the Bhagavad-gita. Such theories are manufactured by show-bottle spiritualists who are trying to gather more followers. If there are restrictions, rules and regulations, people will not become attracted. Therefore those who want followers in the name of religion, just to have a show only, don't restrict the lives of their students, nor their own lives. But that method is not approved by the Vedas. As far as simplicity is concerned, not only should a particular order of life follow this principle, but every member, be he in the brahmacari-asrama, or grhastha-asrama, or vanaprastha-asrama. One must live very simply. Ahimsa means not arresting the progressive life of any living entity. One should not think that since the spirit spark is never killed even after the killing of the body, there is no harm in killing animals for sense gratification. People are now addicted to eating animals, in spite of having an ample supply of grains, fruits and milk. There is no necessity for animal killing. This injunction is for everyone. When there is no other alternative, one may kill an animal, but it should be offered in sacrifice. At any rate, when there is an ample food supply for humanity, persons who are desiring to make advancement in spiritual realization should not commit violence to animals. Real ahimsa means not checking anyone's progressive life. The animals are also making progress in their evolutionary life by transmigrating from one category of animal life to another. If a particular animal is killed, then his progress is checked. If an animal is staying in a particular body for so many days or so many years and is untimely killed, then he has to come back again in that form of life to complete the remaining days in order to be promoted to another species of life. So their progress should not checked simply to satisfy one's palate. This is called ahimsa. Satyam: This word means that one should not distort the truth for some personal interest. In Vedic literature there are some difficult passages, but the meaning or the purpose should be learned from a bona fide spiritual master. That is the process for understanding the Vedas. Sruti means that one should hear from the authority. One should not construe some interpretation for his personal interest. There are so many commentaries on Bhagavad-gita that misinterpret the original text. The real import of the word should be presented, and that should be learned from a bona fide spiritual master. Akrodha means to check anger. Even if there is provocation, one should be tolerant, for once one becomes angry his whole body becomes polluted. Anger is the product of the modes of passion and lust, so one who is transcendentally situated should check himself from anger. Apaisunam means that one should not find fault with others or correct them unnecessarily. Of course, to call a thief a thief is not fault-finding, but to call an honest person a thief is very much offensive for one who is making advancement in spiritual life. Hri me
ans that one should be very modest and must not perform some act which is abominable. Acapalam, 'determination,' means that one should not be agitated or frustrated in some attempt. There may be failure in some attempt, but one should not be sorry for that; he should make progress with patience and determination. The word tejah used here is meant for the ksatriyas. The ksatriyas should always be very strong to be able to give protection to the weak. They should not pose themselves as nonviolent. If violence is required, they must exhibit it. Saucam means cleanliness, not only in mind and body but in one's dealings also. It is especially meant for the mercantile people, who should not deal in the black market. Nati-manita, 'not expecting honor,' applies to the sudras, the worker class, which are considered, according to Vedic injunctions, to be the lowest of the four classes. They should not be puffed up with unnecessary prestige or honor and should remain in their own status. It is the duty of the sudras to offer respect to the higher class for the upkeep of the social order. All these sixteen qualifications mentioned are transcendental qualities. They should be cultivated according to the different statuses of the social order. The purport is that even though material conditions are miserable, if these qualities are developed by practice, by all classes of men, then gradually it is possible to rise to the highest platform of transcendental realization." Text 4.
"Arrogance, pride, anger, conceit, harshness and ignorance—these qualities belong to those of demoniac nature, O son of Prtha." (purport) "In this verse the royal road to hell is described. The demoniac want to make a show of religion and advancement in spiritual science, although they do not follow the principles. They are always arrogant or proud in possessing some type of education or so much wealth. They desire to be worshiped by others, and they demand respectability, although they do not command respect. Over trifles they become very angry and speak harshly, not gently. They do not know what should be done and what should not be done. They do everything whimsically, according to their own desire, and they do not recognize any authority. These demoniac qualities are taken on by them from the very beginning of their bodies in the wombs of their mothers, and as they grow they manifest all these inauspicious qualities."
Prabhupada: So your answer is there. They think liberty means whatever he likes. That is a demoniac person(?). Now discuss this.
Devotee (1): There's one... You've quoted Canakya Pandita, and he describes a scholar. A scholar is a man who can see all women as his mother, and all living entities, he treats them equally, and other's property as trash. So today's civilization is mistaking a scholar for a rogue and a rogue for a scholar, and here Krsna is explaining a godly man, the qualities of a scholar and gentleman, whereas today's civilization is upside down, backwards.
Prabhupada: Therefore preaching is required.
Dhrstadyumna: They feel that godly qualities are a sign of weakness. And the demoniac qualities is a good sign.
Prabhupada: Heroism. That is heroism.
Dhrstadyumna: Yes, heroism. In this purport, Srila Prabhupada perfectly describes our student life. As students, we were doing everything whimsically. Or we would accept bad things.
Prabhupada: Therefore Prahlada Maharaja recommends from the beginning of student life, kaumara acaret prajno dharman bhagavatan iha [SB 7.6.1], they should be trained up in Krsna consciousness. That Prahlada Maharaja recommends. Now from the very beginning of student life, because there is no education, he is trained up as demon. What can be done? So many things have to be reformed by pushing on Krsna consciousness. These are Krsna consciousness movement, whatever is described in the Bhagavad-gita that is within the jurisdiction of Krsna consciousness. So we have to do all this. Water.
"The transcenspurdental qualities are conducive to liberation, whereas the demonic qualities make for bondage. Do not worry, O son of Pandu, for you are born with the divine qualities." (purport) "Lord Krsna encouraged Arjuna by telling him that he was not born with demoniac qualities. His involvement in the fight was not demoniac, because he was considering the pro's and con's. He was considering whether respectable persons such as Bhisma and Drona should be killed or not, so he was not acting under the influence of anger, false prestige, or harshness. Therefore he was not of the quality of the demons. For a ksatriya, a military man, shooting arrows at the enemy is considered transcendental, and refraining from such a duty is demoniac. Therefore, there was no cause for Arjuna to lament. Anyone who performs the regulated principles of the different orders of life is transcendentally situated."
Prabhupada: Discuss on this point.
Pusta Krsna: They may say that we have arbitrarily given, that the ksatriyas are supposed to kill, like this. But actually everyone should be a good man.
Prabhupada: Not arbitrarily. It is given by Krsna. It is not arbitrary. By the supreme order. How they can say it is arbitrary? Then what is the use of referring to Bhagavad-gita? Things may not be arbitrary, whimsical, therefore we have to take reference from Bhagavad-gita. Lawbook. When a judge gives his judgement, he does not give it arbitrarily. There is lawbooks. So there is no question of arbitrary. The reference is there. How you can say it is arbitrary? That is not a fact. Sastra-vidhi. Rather, if you don't care for sastra-vidhi, then he'll never be successful. Yah sastra-vidhim utsrjya, in this chapter you'll find.
yah sastra-vidhim utsrjya
na sa siddhim avapnoti
na sukham na param gatim
"But he who discards scriptural injunctions and acts according to his own whims attains neither perfection, nor happiness, nor the supreme destination."
Prabhupada: We do not give anything arbitrary.
Dhrstadyumna: Actually this is a fact, because we see that by following their authorities, they are becoming more and more unhappy, and by following our authorities, we are becoming more and more happy.
Dhrstadyumna: So the result is there even in this life we can see, what to speak beyond this life.
Pusta Krsna: They can say that, for example, the wives of Duryodhana and all of these people who were killed, they were not made happy.
Prabhupada: They were happy. Otherwise they could not fight. They are not Vietnam soldiers, when they are attacked they are going away. They are not like that. They are determined that "I'll either lay down life or gain victory." That is their... They were not afraid of fighting. Do you think they were afraid of fighting? That is real ksatriya. Yuddhe capy apalayanam. That is real ksatriya training.
Pusta Krsna: I mean to say that they may consider that this is a selfish type of happiness, though. Not taking into consideration...
Prabhupada: They may think... They are rascals, they cannot think anything. We haven't got to reply all of them. Because they are rascals. They can talk all nonsense. We haven't got to take care of... Just like a child, he's talking so many foolish things. Sometimes we reply, "Yes, yes, we know." But we don't take seriously anything, anything spoken by a child. So these rascals may go on talking so many things, but we haven't got to take care of all of them. We have to do our own business. Let the dog bark on, the caravan will pass. So not that we have to take care of the barking of the dog always. That is not...
dvau bhuta-sargau loke 'smin
daiva asura eva ca
daivo vistarasah prokta
asuram partha me srnu
"O son of Prtha, in this world there are two kinds of created beings. One is called the divine and the other demoniac. I have already explained to you at length the divine qualities. Now hear from Me of the demoniac." (purport) "Lord Krsna, having assured Arjuna that he was born with the divine qualities, is now describing the demoniac way. The conditioned living entities are divided into two classes in this world. Those who are born with divine qualities follow a regulated life; that is to say they abide by the injunctions in scriptures and by the authorities. One should perform duties in the light of authoritative scripture. This mentality is called divine. One who does not follow the regulative principles as they are laid down in the scriptures and who acts according to his whims is called demoniac, or asuric. There is no other criterion but obedience to the regulative principles of scriptures. It is mentioned in Vedic literature that both the demigods and the demons are born of the Prajapati; the only difference is that one class obeys the Vedic injunctions and the other does not."
"Those who are demoniac do not know what is to be done and what is not to be done. Neither cleanliness nor proper behavior nor truth is found in them." Purport. "In every civilized human society there is some set of scriptural rules and regulations which are followed from the beginning, especially among the Aryans, those who adopt the Vedic civilization and who are known as the most advanced civilized peoples. Those who do not follow the scriptural injunctions are supposed to be demons. Therefore it is stated here that the demons do not know the scriptural rules, nor do they have any inclination to follow them. Most of them do not know them, and even if some of them know, they have not the tendency to follow them. They have no faith, nor are they willing to act in terms of Vedic injunctions. The demons are not clean either externally or internally. One should always be very careful to keep his body clean by bathing, brushing teeth, changing clothes, etc. As far as internal cleanliness is concerned, one should always remember the holy names of God and chant Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. The demons neither like nor follow all these rules for external and internal cleanliness. As for behavior, there are many rules and regulations guiding human behavior, such as the Manu-samhita, which is the lawbook of the human race. Even up to today those who are Hindu follow the Manu-samhita. Laws of inheritance and other legalities are derived from this book. Now, in the Manu-samhita it is clearly stated that a woman should not be given freedom. That does not mean that women are to be kept as slaves, but they are like children. Children are not given freedom, but that does not mean they are kept as slaves. The demons have now neglected such injunctions and they think that women should be given as much freedom as men. However this has not improved the social condition of the world. Actually a woman should be given protection at every stage of life. She should be given protection by her father in her younger days, by the husband in her youth, and by the grown-up sons in her old age. This is proper social behavior according to the Manu-samhita. But modern education has artificially devised a puffed-up concept of womanly life, and therefore marriage is practically now an imagination in human society. Nor is the moral condition of woman very good now. The demons, therefore, do not accept any instruction which is good for society, and because they do not follow the experience of great sages and the rules and regulations laid down by the sages, the social condition of the demoniac people is very miserable."
"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." Purport. "The demoniac conclude that the world is phantasmagoria. There is no cause, no effect, no controller, no purpose: everything is unreal. They say that this cosmic manifestation arises due to chance material actions and reactions. They do not think that the world was created by God for a certain purpose. They have their own theory that the world has come about in its own way and that there's no reason to believe that there is a God behind it. For them there is no difference between spirit and matter, and they do not accept the supreme spirit. Everything is matter only, and the whole cosmos is supposed to be a mass of ignorance. According to them, everything is void, and whatever manifestation exists is due to our ignorance in perception. They take it for granted that all manifestation of diversity is a display of ignorance. Just as in a dream we may create so many things which actually have no existence, so when we are awake we shall see that everything is simply a dream. But factually, although the demons say that life is a dream, they are very expert in enjoying the dream. And so, instead of acquiring knowledge, they become more and more implicated in their dreamland. They conclude that as a child is simply the result of sexual intercourse between man and woman, this world is born without any soul. For them it is only a combination of matter that has produced the living entities, and there is no question of the existence of the soul. As many living creatures come out from perspiration and from a dead body without any cause, similarly, the whole living world has come out of the material combinations of the cosmic manifestation. Therefore material nature is the cause of this manifestation, and there is no other cause. They do not believe in the words of Krsna in Bhagavad-gita: mayadhyaksena prakrtih suyate sa-caracaram [Bg. 9.10]. 'Under My direction the whole material world is moving.' In other words, amongst the demons there is no perfect knowledge of the creation of the world; every one of them has a particular theory of his own. According to them, one interpretation of the scriptures is as good as another, for they do not believe in a standard understanding of the scriptural injunctions."
etam drstim avastabhya
ksayaya jagato 'hitah
Prabhupada: This is the right description of modern age. Exact. Hmm? What is that? Etam drstim avastabhya.
Prabhupada: Nastatmano, they have lost their soul. Nastatma. There is no information about the soul. Nastatmanah. God and soul is lost: "There is no God, there is no cause of this creation, there was a chunk," like that. Like that. Etam drstim avastabhya. Read it?
Prabhupada: Nastatmanah, they have lost their self. Nastatmano alpa-buddhayah. A rascal, no intelligence. Just like cats and dogs. If these four principles are available, bas, finished. Life is perfect success. Eating, sleeping, mating. Alpa-buddhayah, animal. Then?
Prabhupada: Ugra-karmanah, the factory. This is ugra-karma. Pradyumna was describing ugra-karma, hellish. Little karma, just wheat is growing, a little tilling, that is sufficient. What is the use of opening big, big factory? Ugra-karma. What it has helped? You were talking on behalf of them. What it has helped? Keeping them. Innocent men, women, they are kept in that factory simply for livelihood. A little work will provide his needs. Nature has given so much facility. They can grow little food anywhere. The cows are there in the pasturing ground. Take milk and live peacefully. Why you open factories? What is the use? Keeping them in hellish condition of life. So this is the description. Now discuss these points.
Dhrstadyumna: You say, Srila Prabhupada, they engage in unbeneficial horrible works meant to destroy the world and that this refers to the atomic weapons. This is so true.
Prabhupada: Yes, God's speaking, Krsna is speaking.
Dhrstadyumna: I was studying this nuclear energy in college, thinking that it would save the world. That by the energy they could make bigger tomatoes, bigger corn, and...
Prabhupada: Bigger deaths. Conclusion is bigger deaths. Everything big. One man was dying, now many hundreds of thousands will die. Bigger deaths. You did not consider it bigger death? Dhrstadyumna: It was very frustrating, though, because for everything they were trying to do good, they found so many more things bad were coming.
Prabhupada: That is... Karma jagat means that if you have to raise this house, then you have to cut the wood somewhere. You have to destroy somewhere, and then you can make house. You have to adjust things like that. You cannot create. This house was constructed, created, by destroying somewhere else. Is it not? So where is your creation? Creation is God's creation. He has created everything, and if you want to create, you have to destroy somewhere. That is karma.
Pusta Krsna: Sometimes these people are called duskrtina. And you've mentioned that the duskrtina, actually he has some intelligence, misused.
Prabhupada: Yes. Intelligence. After destroying the wood, you use your intelligence to construct this house. You have intelligence, there is no doubt. Human being must have intelligence. But that intelligence is given to him for getting out of the clutches of birth, death, old age and disease. He's not utilizing that intelligence for that purpose, therefore duskrtina. Intelligence he has got. We don't say that modern world, they are unintelligent, fools. No, they have got intelligence. But the intelligence is being utilized for duskarya, which he should not have done. Duskarya. Karya and duskarya-work and bad work. His intelligence was given so that he could get relief from these clutches of birth, death, old age and disease, but that he's not utilizing. He's opening factory and creating another bad atmosphere. Therefore duskrtina. To open a factory requires intelligence. So many machine is working, that's all right, but how this intelligence being used? To keep man in a hellish condition of life. Therefore duskrtina.
Devotee (2): They are also very narrowminded. Just like they open a factory, but they're not thinking of the effects of the factory.
Prabhupada: Because therefore duskrtina, mudha, next word. Because they are mudha, therefore duskrtina.
Prabhupada: You wanted to do, Krsna gives you intelligence. You want to manufacture a very complicated machine, Krsna will give you intelligence, "All right, do like this, manufacture." He'll not hear Krsna, sarva dharman parityajya [Bg. 18.66]. That is Krsna's intelligence, that "You rascal, give up this all this." But he'll not do it. Want to do it, but Krsna is so kind, "All right, do it, see the effect." Without Krsna's help we cannot do anything.
Devotee (3): Srila Prabhupada, you have called the politicians representative of Hiranyakasipu, they are trying to become immortal. Just like devotees, but without...
Prabhupada: Yes, this... There are two kinds of men already described, daiva asura eva ca. These two kinds of activities will go on. This is material world. You cannot find out cent percent perfect man. That is not possible. There are a class of men, imperfect, will be there. But it is being described who is imperfect and who is perfect. That you have to select. You cannot clear this material world of imperfect persons. That is not possible. There will be remain, but you must know who is perfect and who is imperfect. And make your choice, whether you want to remain imperfect or want to make progress to become perfect. That is up to you.
Pusta Krsna: It seems almost like a contradiction in one sense, that prabhavanti, that they flourish and at the same time, ksayaya.
Prabhupada: Prabhavanty, materially, materially. Just like when you go to a modern city and say, "Oh, how developed," prabhavanty. But what kind of prabhavanty? That is next word, jagato 'hitah, to destroy this world. So their prabhavanty in the opposite direction. That is not prabhavanty actually. Prabhavanty in the material sense, but what is the purpose, what is the end? Jagato 'hitah. There are two kinds of progress, to hell, to heaven.
Hari-sauri: Fifty years ago they were thinking it was progress to build big skyscrapers; now it's so hellish in the cities, everybody is moving out.
Prabhupada: Yes. Yes. Actually, when there are so many skyscraper buildings, it is hell. The natural air is obstructed. In Bombay you'll see. If you are in the top floor you have got little facility; in the lower floor it is hell. If there are several skyscraper building, in the first floor, second floor, it is simply hell. No air. Simply you have to run on this electric fan. You cannot see the sky. Therefore it is meant skyscraper? What is scraper? What is the meaning?
Prabhupada: So you have touched the sky in such a way I cannot see even. (laughs) This is the result. You demon, you have captured the sky, so I have no opportunity to see even. Always electric light. Now we see the sky, the sun, how nice it is. This is life. Green, down and up, clear sky, sun, this is life. We get rejuvenation in this atmosphere. What is this nonsense, all skyscraper building, no air, no light? Jagato 'hitah. The mind becomes crippled, the health becomes deteriorated, children cannot see even the sky, everything is spoiled.
Kuladri: Every day in the city they make a report, pollution report. And they say you should go outside or not go outside. Some days it is not good for your health to leave your home.
Devotee (1): They are also selling fresh air, Prabhupada.
Prabhupada: Fresh air? (laughter) Fresh water, also.
Prabhupada: Fresh, by cleaning the urine? Now they are doing that. Fresh water by cleaning urine. Fat derived from stool. Yes, German people did it. Fat extracted from stool. Scientifically. You can use it with butter very nicely on your bread. This is going on.
Pusta Krsna: Some of the materialists may argue that these activities are not all that unbeneficial. For example, they have made a tractor, and in America they can produce so many grains, so much so that practically they could feed the world.
Prabhupada: Why do they not?
Prabhupada: Do that. There are so many overpopulation, and you can do it in America. So much land lying vacant here.
Dhrstadyumna: Better to put the people in factories in the fields. If they are going to work, let them work growing grain and milking the cows.
Prabhupada: Yes, then they will live very happily. That will not do. Jagato 'hitah. Read it.
Prabhupada: Ksayaya, ksayaya means all for ruination, bringing ruin, ruination. So save them from ruination. Actually I've seen in New York, some quarter so nasty. In London also, so nasty. Disaster. So many storefront, lying vacant houses. I was, when I had no business, I was loitering to see the city. Hellish condition. They said it was risky, but I did not know that it was risky. One electrician, he was my friend, "Oh, Swamiji, you are going in those quarters? It is not for you, don't." "Oh, I do not care. What I have got they will take from me?" So I was loitering in New York City. So many nasty quarters. London also. So many houses vacant.
Kuladri: There is more chance of being killed in New York City than in the jungle.
Prabhupada: Yes. They warned me not to go to the Central Park in the evening. They say at night nobody goes there.
Prabhupada: Just see. Such an important city, and such important park, and nobody can go.
Pusta Krsna: Is there any stage at which these atheistic people have done anything good by accident?
Prabhupada: Therefore they support this accident theory. Nowadays they have got the accident theory. Because ordinarily there is no good. There is no possibility. But by accident if some good comes, that's all. Otherwise, jagato 'hitah, it is only fault. They are... But accidentally means good comes. Accidentally, Krsna consciousness movement came. (laughs) Although it was going on in India. Nobody called Krsna consciousness, the scientists, the philosophers, the politicians. But accidentally came. Accidentally, we got result. You cannot explain God, therefore you take it as accident.
Pusta Krsna: This is very interesting, very interesting. In a Vedic community everything is very ordered, and goodness prevails, therefore God consciousness seems very natural.
Prabhupada: Go on.
Dhrstadyumna: "Following such conclusions, the demoniac, who are lost to themselves and who have no intelligence, engage in unbeneficial, horrible works meant to destroy the world." (purport) "The demoniac are engaged in activities that will lead the world to destruction. The Lord states here that they are less intelligent. The materialists, who have no concept of God, think that they are advancing. But, according to Bhagavad-gita, they are unintelligent and devoid of all sense. They try to enjoy this material world to the utmost limit and therefore always engage in inventing something for sense gratification. Such materialistic inventions are considered to be the advancement of human civilization, but the result is that people grow more and more violent and more and more cruel-cruel to animals and cruel to other human beings. They have no idea how to behave toward one another. Animal killing is very prominent amongst demoniac people. Such people are considered the enemies of the world because ultimately they will invent or create something which will bring destruction to all. Indirectly, this verse anticipates the invention of nuclear weapons, of which the whole world is today very proud. At any moment war may take place, and these atomic weapons may create havoc. Such things are created solely for the destruction of the world, and this is indicated here. Due to godlessness, such weapons are invented in human society; they are not meant for the peace and prosperity of the world."
Prabhupada: Now, discuss.
Dhrstadyumna: Actually, in this century there has not been ten years of peace. Always there is some war been going on, and now...
Prabhupada: Cold war and hot war, they say. When there is fire that is hot war, and there is diplomacy and politics, that is cold war. So war is going on. Sometimes it is hot, sometimes it is cold. There is no peace.
Pusta Krsna: We even see that among the so-called God conscious communities in the world, still there are such horrible activities going on, fighting.
Prabhupada: No, no, we don't say that fighting will stop. We are distinguishing demons and rogues, uh, demigods. If you fight, demon, I must defend myself. What can I do? If you start war, you are demon, shall I stop: "No, no, I am demigod, I'll not fight. You kill me"? Is that intelligent? I'll have to fight. But the war starts by the implication of the demons. The Kuruksetra war, it was not started by Arjuna. It was started by Duryodhana. (long pause) All right, go on.
"The demoniac, taking shelter of insatiable lust, pride and false prestige, and being thus illusioned, are always sworn to unclean work, attracted by the impermanent." Purport. "The demoniac mentality is described here. The demons' lust is never satiated. They will go on increasing and increasing their insatiable desires for material enjoyment. Although they are always full of anxieties on account of accepting nonpermanent things, they still continue to engage in such activities out of illusion. They have no knowledge and cannot tell that they are heading the wrong way. Accepting nonpermanent things, such demoniac people create their own God, create their own hymns, and chant accordingly. The result is that they become more and more attracted to two things—sex enjoyment and accumulation of material wealth. The word asuci-vratah, 'unclean vow,' is very significant in this connection. Such demoniac people are only attracted by wine, women, gambling and meat-eating; those are their asuci, unclean habits. Induced by pride and false prestige, they create some principles of religion which are not approved by the Vedic injunctions. Although such demoniac people are most abominable in the world, still, by artificial means, the world creates a false honor for them. Although they are gliding toward hell, they consider themselves very much advanced."
Prabhupada: There are so many religious systems: "Yes, you can do whatever you like, you can eat whatever you like," and still it is religion. This is demoniac. That will be explained further. Huh? Pravrttim ca nivrttim ca na vidur asurah jana [Bg. 16.7]. No, not in the beginning.
Dhrstadyumna: Number twenty-three?
Pradyumna: We just did that one. Text seven.
Prabhupada: You have not recited this verse already? Oh, yes. Pravrttim ca nivrttim, this is the... They do not know what to do, what to not do. Because they do not take any standard idea. They manufacture their own ideas.
Kuladri: In the Catholic Church, they used to have the doctrine, "No eating meat on Friday." Used to be standard, no meat-eating on Friday; they would only eat fish. Now within our lifetime they have changed it.
Dhrstadyumna: They have changed so many things. When I was a young boy they..., you had to be in church on Sunday morning very early, otherwise it was noticed. Now you don't have to be till later on. There is no more austerity in religion.
Prabhupada: Therefore they are selling churches. Nobody is attracted. In London city there are so many churches closed. Nobody goes.
Devotee (1): In Cleveland, also, Prabhupada, there are so many churches, only five, ten, fifteen people attend, and they are all elderly, elderly ladies.
Hari-sauri: Due to the Pope's taking a firm stand over the not allowing abortion and contraception, like this, they said that the number of practicing Catholics was reduced from seventy-five percent to fifty percent, just simply because of that one principle that he'd stuck to. So twenty-five percent immediately left.
Prabhupada: Where they have gone? (laughter)
Dhrstadyumna: Hopeless life.
Prabhupada: No, why hopeless? There is hope—Krsna consciousness.
Pusta Krsna: This very much describes modern civilization also. They are such asuci-vratah, they are given much respect in modern-day society. And the devotees, sometimes we go preaching and put into jail.
Prabhupada: It is very fortunate they are not crucifying you. Putting into jail, but they crucified Lord Jesus Christ, they were so intelligent. Because he was preaching God consciousness, he was crucified. What was his fault? He was talking of God, therefore he was crucified.
Dhrstadyumna: Now they are just taking our collection. Today two of my boys, they were arrested just north of here. So as a fine they have taken their sankirtana collection.
Prabhupada: Robbing. In the name of law, robbing.
Dhrstadyumna: Right, the court has taken it.
Devotee (1): Did this happen in court or the police...?
Dhrtadyumna: In court.
Prabhupada: And then they let go?
Dhrstadyumna: They were let go.
Prabhupada: Yes, they are robbing, government, dasyu dharmabhih. It is stated, government will be like rogues. As the rogues and thieves, they take away from you by force, the government will do that. In the court, by income tax, so many people are being harassed.
Dhrstadyumna: There is a large organization called Mafia in this country.
Dhrstadyumna: Mafia, organized criminals, organized like businessmen. They are controlling the politicians by money. But although they are exposing, still it goes on. It is worse than ever.
Prabhupada: What is that? Explain further.
Hari-sauri: The Mafia is an organization that was originally coming from Sicily. They were an organized group of men that would control all the politics in the area by manipulation of money and businessmen.
Devotee (1): And violence.
Hari-sauri: And violence. So many things they'd do. They used to organize all the heroin that comes into the country, like this, for revenue, to get revenue, money. So many things. And places like Las Vegas, which is a big gambling city, that is also run by the Mafia. They control all the casinos and they control the police, they pay everyone off, like that, and if they don't agree, they kill them. So like this, their influence is spread everywhere, any illegal things that are going on.
Dhrstadyumna: Our last President, two Presidents ago, Kennedy, he was involved with one of their prostitutes. She was getting information, and he was not investigating them because he was involved with one of their prostitutes.
Prabhupada: They keep prostitutes also?
Dhrstadyumna: Oh, yes, they use them. Actually, they are controlling many of these judges, and then we are coming in, and we are preaching the other thing, no prostitution, no drinking, and then we are getting fines.
Pusta Krsna: If the natural tendency of the living entity is to want to exist, to live, then why is it they perform so many horrible acts that will destroy themselves?
Prabhupada: They are thinking that they will exist in that way.
Pusta Krsna: Is it that they see everyone as their enemy, and therefore everything has to be around them?
Prabhupada: No, that is foolishness. Everyone wants to exist, struggle for existence, but they do not know how to exist. That is foolishness. Everyone wants to exist because actually he is eternal. He doesn't like to be destroyed. That is his natural inclination. But he does not know. We are giving the formula that if you want to exist, then you come to Krsna consciousness. We are giving the right information. But they want to exist in their wrong way of existing. That is not possible.
Devotee (4): Why is it that the demon, he feels happy if someone else is distressed.
Devotee (4): Why does the demoniac mentality, that they feel happy if they see someone else in distress?
Prabhupada: Therefore they are demons. That is demonic mentality. They are happy when others are unhappy. And when others are happy, they are unhappy. That is demon.
Devotee (5): They are thinking "I am not so happy, but these others, they are suffering more, so therefore I am okay."
Prabhupada: No. This is general demonic feeling. If you are unhappy, then I am happy. And if you are happy, then I am unhappy.
Kuladri: The devotee is described as para-duhkha-duhkhi. He's only distressed in seeing the distress of others.
"They believe that to gratify the senses unto the end of life is the prime necessity of human civilization. Thus there is no end to their anxiety. Being bound by hundreds and thousands of desires, by lust and anger, they secure money by illegal means for sense gratification."
Dhrstadyumna: Purport. "The demoniac accept that the enjoyment of the senses is the ultimate goal of life, and this concept they maintain until death. They do not believe in life after death, and they do not believe that one takes on different types of bodies according to one's karma, or activities in this world. Their plans for life are never finished, and they go on preparing plan after plan, all of which are never finished. We have personal experience of a person of such demoniac mentality, who, even at the point of death, was requesting the physician to prolong his life for four years more because his plans were not yet complete. Such foolish people do not know that a physician cannot prolong life even for a moment. When the notice is there, there is no consideration of the man's desire. The laws of nature do not allow a second beyond what one is destined to enjoy. The demoniac person, who has no faith in God or the Supersoul within himself, performs all kinds of sinful activities simply for sense gratification. He does not know that there is a witness sitting within his heart. The Supersoul is observing the activities of the individual soul. As it is stated in the Vedic literature, the Upanisads, there are two birds sitting in one tree; the one is acting and enjoying or suffering the fruits of the branches, and the other is witnessing. But one who is demoniac has no knowledge of Vedic scripture, nor has he any faith; therefore he feels free to do anything for sense enjoyment, regardless of the consequences."
Prabhupada: Now discuss any points.
Kuladri: One of the richest men in the United States, Howard Hughes, he just recently died, and he had sores all over his body. With all of his money, he died in a very miserable condition. He had so many millions and millions of dollars.
Dhrstadyumna: He said at the time of death, "I think I've made a mistake."
Prabhupada: What he was?
Dhrstadyumna: He was one of the richest men in the world, Srila Prabhupada. He was owning all the..., like aircraft, they are making, the jet airplanes, and he was a movie star in his youth, and he had many beautiful women, fabulous wealth, he owned hotels all over the world, airplanes, airports, but...
Pusta Krsna: At the end of his life he didn't even mix with women so much though. He became very despondent and depressed. He was like a hermit.
Dhrstadyumna: He was afraid of germs.
Pusta Krsna: He became like a hermit. He withdrew into himself. No one knew very much about him; he was very mysterious so far as his life with the public was concerned. But towards the end of his life he didn't live a very elaborate life of sense gratification at all. No one knew much about him at all.
Hari-sauri: This description is perfect, actually, because most of his fortunes they calculate he amassed by many illegal methods, like paying off police and fixing so many things up. With his money, he was always able to buy government officials and like this and get so many contracts to further the development of his aircraft companies and this and that.
Prabhupada: He has manufactured airplanes?
Hari-sauri: Yes, he had something to do with airplanes. And also he had a lot of land in Las Vegas, this gambling city. So many... He was involved in many mysterious maneuvers. It's open in the newspapers, they said that he got most of his money from illegal methods.
Dhrstadyumna: In his old age he was very afraid of germs. He didn't want to catch any disease. So he would wear..., he would live in perfectly sealed rooms with all artificial air and light, so no germs could exist, and he would wear these...
Prabhupada: He did not know that he's creating germs within his body.
Dhrstadyumna: He could not avoid death.
Prabhupada: If there was no germs, how he died? So at last he said?
Dhrstadyumna: He said something to the effect that "I don't know what this life was about. I think I've made a mistake." Just at the end.
Prabhupada: Yes, it was mistake.
Dhrstadyumna: Everyone is envious of such persons, Srila Prabhupada. They think that "Yes, he could not enjoy his wealth, but if I had that wealth I would enjoy it." But then if they get it, then they also fail.
Prabhupada: Hmm. Next, what is next?
Prabhupada: No, I have no objection to sit down here. If you want to stop, we can stop, chant Hare Krsna. [break]
"The demoniac person thinks: 'So much wealth do I have today, and I will gain more according to my schemes. So much is mine now, and it will increase in the future, more and more. He is my enemy, and I have killed him, and my other enemies will also be killed. I am the lord of everything. I am the enjoyer. I am perfect, powerful and happy. I am the richest man, surrounded by aristocratic relatives. There is none so powerful and happy as I am. I shall perform sacrifices, I shall give some charity, and thus I shall rejoice.' In this way, such persons are deluded by ignorance." These are timeless statements Srila Prabhupada. Krsna has spoken for all time by these words.
Prabhupada: Our Bhaktivedanta Book Trust, the formula is therefore: as soon as you get money, fifty percent spent for printing and fifty percent for temple. This is the basic principle of our Bhaktivedanta (Book Trust)—no saving. As soon as you have got some money, print books, print books. Don't keep it. If you print books, some day somebody will read. But if we keep money, it creates disturbance. I am therefore always insisting, "Print books, Print books." Or construct temple, this building, that building. There is no need of keeping money.
Prabhupada: Mm. (pause) So you don't require covering? This girl? This cloth is sufficient? What you think? Why you have no covering? Mm? You do not require cloth?
Kuladri: It is warm for us Srila Prabhupada.
Prabhupada: No, if they require, there must be supply. You must ask them what they need and provide them because they do not say you'll also keep silent. That's not good. Every month they must be asked what they need. Necessities, they must be supplied. We have already discussed this point, the women, they require protection, children, women. All right, you can...