Chapter One
Krsna, the All-Attractive
February 27, 1972
Bob: What is a scientist?
Srila Prabhupada: One who knows things as they are.
Bob: He thinks he knows things as they are.
Srila Prabhupada: What?
Bob: He hopes he knows things as they are.
Srila Prabhupada: No, he is supposed to know. We approach the scientist because he is supposed to know things correctly. A scientist means one who knows things as they are. Krsna means “all-attractive.”
Bob: All-attractive.
Srila Prabhupada: Yes. So unless God is all-attractive, how can He be God? A man is important when he is attractive. Is it not?
Bob: It is so.
Srila Prabhupada: So, God must be attractive and attractive for all. Therefore, if God has any name, or if you want to give any name to God, only “Krsna” can be given.
Bob: But why only the name Krsna?
Srila Prabhupada: Because He’s all-attractive. Krsna means“all-attractive.”
Bob: Oh, I see.
Srila Prabhupada: Yes. God has no name, but by His qualities we give Him names. If a man is very beautiful, we call him “beautiful.” If a man is very intelligent, we call him “wise.’ So the name is given according to the quality. Because God is all-attractive, the name Krsna can be applied only to Him. Krsna means “all-attractive.” It includes everything.
Bob: But what about a name meaning “all-powerful”?
Srila Prabhupada: Yes.... Unless you are powerful, how can you be all-attractive?
Syamasundara: [an American devotee, Srila Prabhupada’s secretary] It includes everything.
Srila Prabhupada: Everything. He must be very beautiful, He must be very wise, He must be very powerful, He must be very famous...
Bob: Is Krsna attractive to rascals?
Srila Prabhupada: Oh, yes! He was the greatest rascal also.
Bob: How is that?
Srila Prabhupada: [laughing] Because He was always teasing the gopis.
Syamasundara: Teasing?
Srila Prabhupada: Yes. Sometimes when Radharani would go out, Krsna would attack Her, and when She would fall down—“Krsna, don’t torture Me in that way”—They would fall down, and Krsna would take the opportunity and kiss Her. [He laughs.] So, Radharani was very pleased, but superficially Krsna was the greatest rascal. So unless rascaldom is in Krsna, how could rascaldom be existent in the world? Our formula of God is that He is the source of everything. Unless rascaldom is in Krsna, how can it be manifest... because He is the source of everything. But His rascaldom is so nice that everyone worships His rascaldom.
Bob: What about the rascals who are not so nice?
Srila Prabhupada: No, rascaldom is not nice, but Krsna is absolute. He is God. Therefore His rascaldom is also good. Krsna is all-good. God is good.
Bob: Yes.
Srila Prabhupada: Therefore, when He becomes a rascal, that is also good. That is Krsna. Rascaldom is not good, but when it is practiced by Krsna, because He is absolutely good, that rascaldom is also good. This one has to understand.
Bob: Are there some people who do not find Krsna attractive?
Srila Prabhupada: No. All people will find Him attractive. Who is not attracted? just give an example: “This man or this living entity is not attracted to Krsna.”Just find such a person.
Bob: Somebody who wishes to do things in life that he may feel are wrong but who wishes to gain power or prestige or money...
Srila Prabhupada: Yes.
Bob:... may find God unattractive. He may not find God attractive, because God gives him guilt.
Srila Prabhupada: No, not God. His attraction is to become powerful. A man wants to become powerful or rich—is it not? But nobody is richer than Krsna. Therefore Krsna is attractive to him.
Bob: If a person who wants to become rich prays to Krsna, will he become rich?
Srila Prabhupada: Oh, yes!
Bob: He can become rich through this means?
Srila Prabhupada: Oh, yes. Because Krsna is all-powerful, if you pray to Krsna to become rich, Krsna will make you rich.
Bob: If somebody lives an evil life but prays to become rich, he may still become rich?
Srila Prabhupada: Yes. Praying to Krsna is not evil.
Bob: Oh, yes.
Srila Prabhupada: [chuckling] Somehow or other he prays to Krsna, so you cannot say that he is evil.
Bob: Yes.
Srila Prabhupada: Krsna says in Bhagavad-gita, api cet suduracaro bhajate mam ananya-bhak. Have you read it?
Bob: Yes. The Sanskrit I don’t know, but the English I do.
Srila Prabhupada: Hm-m.
Bob: “Even if the most evil man prays to Me...”
Srila Prabhupada: Yes.
Bob: “... He will be elevated.”
Srila Prabhupada: Yes. As soon as he begins to pray to Krsna, that is not evil. Therefore He is all-attractive. It is said in the Vedas that the Absolute Truth, or the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is the reservoir of all pleasure—raso vai sah. Everyone is hankering after someone because he realizes some mellow in it.
Bob: Excuse me?
Srila Prabhupada: Some mellow. Suppose a man is drinking. Why is he drinking? He is getting some mellow out of that drinking. A man is hankering after money because by possessing money he gets a mellow out of it.
Bob: What does mellow mean?
Srila Prabhupada: [to Syamasundara] How do they define mellow?
Syamasundara: Taste, pleasure.
Bob: OK.
Srila Prabhupada: Pleasing taste. So the Vedas say, raso vai sah. The exact translation of mellow is rasa. [Malati, Syamasundara’s wife, enters with a tray of food] What is that?
Malati: Eggplant, fried.
Srila Prabhupada: Oh! All-attractive! All-attractive! [Laughter.]
Syamasundara: How is Krsna the greatest scientist?
Srila Prabhupada: Because He knows everything. A scientist is one who knows a subject matter thoroughly. He is a scientist. Krsna—He knows everything.
Bob: I am presently a science teacher.
Srila Prabhupada: Yes, teaching. But, unless you have perfect knowledge, how can you teach? That is our question.
Bob: Without perfect knowledge, though, you can teach—
Srila Prabhupada: That is cheating; that is not teaching. That is cheating. Just like the scientists say, “There was a chunk... and the creation took place. Perhaps. Maybe...” What is this? Simply cheating! It is not teaching; it is cheating.
Bob: Let me repeat what you said this morning—that was interesting. I asked about miracles, and you said that only a fool would believe in miracles because—let us say you are a child and an adult lifts this table. That’s a miracle. Or you’re a chemist and you combine acid and base and you make smoke, an explosion or whatever. To somebody ignorant, that’s a miracle. But for everything there is a process, and so when you see a miracle, it’s just ignorance of the process. So that only a fool would believe in miracles, and—you correct me if I say wrong...
Srila Prabhupada: Yes, yes.
Bob: You said when Jesus came the people then were somewhat more ignorant and needed miracles as aid. I wasn’t sure if that’s quite what you said.
Srila Prabhupada: Yes, yes. Miracles are for the ignorant.
Bob: I had asked this in relation to all the miracle men you hear about in India.
Srila Prabhupada: Krsna is the highest miracle man.
Bob: Yes.
Srila Prabhupada: That is stated by Kunti...
Bob: Without perfect knowledge, can I not teach some things? For example, I may—
Srila Prabhupada: You can teach up to the point you know.
Bob: Yes, but I should not claim to teach more than I know.
Srila Prabhupada: Yes, that is cheating.
Syamasundara: In other words, he can’t teach the truth with partial knowledge.
Srila Prabhupada: Yes. That is not possible for any human being. A human being has imperfect senses. So how can he teach perfect knowledge? Suppose you see the sun as a disc. You have no means to approach the sun. If you say that we can see the sun by telescope and this and that, they are also made by you, and you are imperfect. So how can your machine be perfect? Therefore, your knowledge of the sun is imperfect. So don’t teach about the sun unless you have perfect knowledge. That is cheating.
Bob: But what about to teach that it is supposed that the sun is 93,000,000 miles away?
Srila Prabhupada: As soon as you say “it is supposed,” it is not scientific.
Bob: But I think that almost all science, then, is not scientific.
Srila Prabhupada: That is the point!
Bob: All science is based on, you know, suppositions of this or that.
Srila Prabhupada: Yes. They are teaching imperfectly. Just like they are advertising so much about the moon. Do you think their knowledge is perfect?
Bob: No.
Srila Prabhupada: Then?
Bob: What is the proper duty of the teacher in society? Let us say a science teacher. What should he be doing in the classroom?
Srila Prabhupada: Classroom? You should simply teach about Krsna.
Bob: He should not teach about...
Srila Prabhupada: No. That will include everything. His aim should be to know Krsna.
Bob: Can a scientist teach the science of combining acid and alkaline, and this kind of science, with Krsna as its object?
Srila Prabhupada: How can it be?
Bob: If you—when one studies science, one finds general tendencies of nature, and these general tendencies of nature point to a controlling force....
Srila Prabhupada: That I was explaining the other day. I asked one chemist whether, according to chemical formulas, hydrogen and oxygen linked together become water. Do they not?
Bob: It’s true.
Srila Prabhupada: Now, there is a vast amount of water in the Atlantic Ocean and Pacific Ocean. What quantity of chemicals was required?
Bob: How much?
Srila Prabhupada: Yes. How many tons?
Bob: Many!
Srila Prabhupada: So who supplied it?
Bob: This was supplied by God.
Srila Prabhupada: Somebody must have supplied it.
Bob: Yes.
Srila Prabhupada: So that is science. You can teach like that.
Bob: Should one bother teaching that if you combine acid and alkaline they form a neutral?
Srila Prabhupada: The same thing. There are so many effervescents. So, who is performing it? Who is supplying the acid and alkaline? [There is a long pause.]
Bob: So this comes from the same source as the water.
Srila Prabhupada: Yes. You cannot manufacture water unless you have hydrogen and oxygen. So, here is a vast—not only this Atlantic or Pacific: there are millions of planets, and there are millions of Atlantic and Pacific oceans. So who created this water with hydrogen and oxygen, and how was it supplied? That is our question. Somebody must have supplied it, otherwise how has it come into existence?
Bob: But should it also be taught how you make water from hydrogen and oxygen? The procedure of burning them together—should this also be taught? That is, you burn hydrogen and oxygen together...
Srila Prabhupada: That is secondary. That is not very difficult. Just like Malati made this puri [a kind of bread]. So, there is flour, and there is ghee [clarified butter], and she made a puri. But unless there is ghee and flour, where is the chance of making a puri? In the Bhagavad-gita there is this statement: “Water, earth, air, fire—they are My energies.” What is your body? This external body—that is your energy. Do you know that? Your body is made out of your energy. For example, I am eating...
Bob: Yes.
Srila Prabhupada: So I am creating some energy, and therefore my body is maintained.
Bob: Oh, I see.
Srila Prabhupada: So therefore your body is made out of your energy.
Bob: But when you eat the food, there is energy from the sun in the food.
Srila Prabhupada: So, I am giving an example. I am creating some energy by digesting the food, and that is maintaining my body. If your energy supply is not proper, then your body becomes weak or unhealthy. Your body is made out of your own energy. Similarly, this gigantic cosmic body—the universe—is made of Krsna’s energy. How can you deny it? As your body is made out of your energy, similarly the universal body must be made by somebody’s energy. That is Krsna. [There is a long pause.]
Bob: I’ll have to think about it to follow that.
Srila Prabhupada: What is to follow? It is a fact. [He laughs.] Your hair is growing daily. Why? Because you have some energy.
Bob: The energy I obtain from my food.
Srila Prabhupada: Somehow or other you have obtained that energy! And through that energy your hair is growing. So if your body is manufactured by your energy, similarly the whole gigantic manifestation is made of God’s energy. It is a fact! It is not your energy.
Bob: Yes. Oh, I see that.
A devotee: Just like—aren’t the planets in this universe the sun’s energy—a product of the sun’s energy?
Srila Prabhupada: Yes, but who produced the sun? That is Krsna’s energy. Because it is heat, and Krsna says, bhumir apo ’nalo vayuh: “Heat—that is My energy.” The sun is the representation of the heating energy of Krsna. It is not your energy. You cannot say, “The sun is made by me.” But somebody must have made it, and Krsna says that He did. So, we believe Krsna. Therefore we are Krsna-ites.
Bob: Krsna-ites?
Srila Prabhupada: Yes. Our knowledge is perfect. If I say that heat is the energy of Krsna, you cannot deny it, because it is not your energy. In your body there is some certain amount of heat. Similarly, heat is someone’s energy. And who is that person? That is Krsna. Krsna says, “Yes, it is My energy.” So my knowledge is perfect. Because I take the version of the greatest scientist, I am the greatest scientist. I may be a fool personally, but because I take knowledge from the greatest scientist, I am the greatest scientist. I have no difficulty.
Bob: Excuse me?
Srila Prabhupada: I have no difficulty in becoming the greatest scientist because I take the knowledge from the greatest scientist. [There is a long pause.] “This earth, water, fire, air, ether, mind, intelligence and ego—they are My eight separated energies.”
Bob: They are separated energies?
Srila Prabhupada: Yes. Just like this milk. What is this milk? The separated energy of the cow. [Syamasundara and Bob, stunned, laugh in realization.] Is it not? It is the manifestation of the separated energy of the cow.
Syamasundara: Is it like a by-product?
Srila Prabhupada: Yes.
Bob: So, what is the significance of this energy’s being separated from Krsna?
Srila Prabhupada: “Separated” means that this is made out of the body of the cow but it is not the cow. That is separation.
Bob: So, this earth and all is made out of Krsna but it is not Krsna?
Srila Prabhupada: It is not Krsna. Or, you can say, Krsna and not Krsna simultaneously. That is our philosophy. One and different. You cannot say that these things are different from Krsna, because without Krsna they have no existence. At the same time, you cannot say, “Then let me worship water. Why Krsna? The pantheists say that because everything is God, whatever we do is God worship. This is Mayavada philosophy—that because everything is made of God, therefore everything is God. But our philosophy is that everything is God but also not God.
Bob: So what on earth is God? Is there anything on earth that is God?
Srila Prabhupada: Yes. Because everything is made out of the energy of God. But that does not mean that by worshiping anything you are worshiping God.
Bob: So what is on earth that is not maya [illusion]? It is...
Srila Prabhupada: Maya means “energy.”
Bob: It means energy?
Srila Prabhupada: Yes. Mayaand another meaning is “illusion.” So foolish persons accept the energy as the energetic. That is maya. Just like sunshine. Sunshine enters your room. Sunshine is the energy of the sun. But because the sunshine enters your room, you cannot say that the sun
Srila Prabhupada: Just wire.
Bob: So if I build a statue of Krsna, it is not Krsna unless...
Srila Prabhupada: It is Krsna. But you have to know the process of understanding that it is Krsna. It is Krsna.
Bob: It is not just earth and mud.
Srila Prabhupada: No. Earth has no separate existence without Krsna. Krsna says, “My energy.” You cannot separate the energy from the energetic. It is not possible. You cannot separate heat from fire. But fire is different from the heat, and heat is different from the fire. You are taking heat; that does not mean you are touching fire. Fire, in spite of emanating heat, keeps its identity. Similarly, although Krsna, by His different energies, is creating everything, He remains Krsna. The Mayavadi philosophers think that if Krsna is everything, then Krsna’s separate identity is lost. That is material thinking. For example, by drinking this milk, little by little, when I finish, there is no more milk; it has gone to my belly. Krsna is not like that. He is omnipotent. We are utilizing His energy continually; still He is there, present. Just like a man begetting children unlimitedly, but the man is there. A crude example. It’s not that because he has produced hundreds of children, he is finished. So, similarly, God or Krsna, in spite of His unlimited number of children, is there.
“Because He is the complete whole, even though so many complete units emanate from Him, He remains the complete balance.” This is Krsna consciousness. Krsna is never finished. Krsna is so powerful. Therefore He is all-attractive. This is one side of the display of Krsna’s energy. Similarly, He has unlimited energies. This study of Krsna’s energy is only one side, or a portion only. So in this way, if you go on studying Krsna, that is Krsna consciousness. It is not a bogus thing—“maybe,” “perhaps not.” Absolutely! It is!
Syamasundara: And the study itself is never finished.
Srila Prabhupada: No. How can it be? Krsna has unlimited energy.

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