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Bhagavad-gita 2.36-37

London, September 4, 1973
Pradyumna: (leads chanting, etc.)
avacya-vadams ca bahun
vadisyanti tavahitah
nindantas tava samarthyam
tato duhkhataram nu kim
[Bg. 2.36]
Pradyumna: Translation: "Your enemies will describe you in many unkind words and scorn your ability. What could be more painful for you?"
Prabhupada: Niscayah, "uncertainly"?
Pradyumna: Should be "certainly." Translation: "O son of Kunti, either you will be killed on the battlefield and attain the heavenly planets, or you will conquer and enjoy the heavenly kingdom."
Prabhupada: You are noting down the mistakes and...? Noting down the mistakes, yes.
Pradyumna: Note down, yes. "Therefore get up and fight with determination."
Prabhupada: So Arjuna's position is very precarious. There is a Bengali proverb naste bose bhunkata.(?) A girl, he, she is very famous dancing girl. So it is the system... As we have introduced, the girls and ladies, they have their veil, gunthana. It is called gunthana in Indian language. So a dancing girl, when she was on the stage, she saw that so many of her relatives are there as visitors. So she began to draw the veil. So this is not required. You are a dancing girl. Now you have to dance. You cannot be shy. You must freely dance. That is your duty. So Arjuna, some rascal has killed some man giving the reason that killing is not sinful because in the Bhagavad-gita it is stated there. Yes. Apparently, to the rascals it appears like that, that Krsna is encouraging Arjuna to fight. And he says there is no sin. But the rascal does not see under what condition he is advising. Sva-dharmam api caveksya. The sva-dharma, the principle is a ksatriya's duty to fight, is to kill in fight. If you are in fight, you become sympathetic, then the same example: the dancing girl, when on the stage, if she is shy, it is like that. Why she should be shy? She must dance freely. That will be credit. So in the warfield, you cannot be compassionate. That is not required. In so many ways. Ahimsa arjava, these are good qualities. In the thirteen chapter, Krsna has described ahimsa, nonviolence. Nonviolence is generally accepted. And actually Arjuna was nonviolent. He was not a coward, not that because he was coward, therefore he was refusing to fight. No. As a Vaisnava, naturally he is nonviolent. He does not like to kill anyone, and especially his own family men. He was taking a little compassion. Not that he was a coward.
So Krsna is encouraging, inducing Arjuna to observe the duty. You cannot deviate from duty. That was the point. When there is fight, you must fight regularly, and kill the enemies. That is your credit. When you are fighting with the enemies, if you become compassionate, "How shall I kill?" that is cowardice. Therefore Krsna concludes here: hato va prapsyasi svargam jitva va bhoksyase mahim. There are two alternatives. For a fighter, for a ksatriya, to fight in the battle, either gain victory or die. No via media. Fight to the last point if you are able, then become victorious. Or die. No stoppage. All this fighting were meant like that. According to the Vedic culture, the ksatriyas... Not the brahmanas. The brahmanas are not encouraged to fight or kill. No. They should remain always nonviolent. Even there is required violence, a brahmana will not kill personally. He will bring the matter to the ksatriya, royal order. Just like Visvamitra. Visvamitra was being disturbed by some demons in the forest. They used to live in the forest. So Visvamitra was able to kill such demon, many demons, by his will. But he did not do so. He went to Maharaja Dasaratha, father of Lord Ramacandra, to request him that "Give your sons Rama and Laksmana. I will take them with me. They will kill that demon." The killing is there, but the brahmana is not going to kill personally. Or the vaisya is not meant for killing, neither the sudras. Only the ksatriyas. The ksatriyas should be so trained up. Just like in USA there is some trouble in recruiting soldiers, because... Why the difficulty is? The difficulty is the training is like sudras. The young men are trained up like sudras, how they can fight? Therefore they are afraid. They try to avoid fighting. Because there is no division. Everyone, in this age, everyone is sudra. How you can expect a sudra will be encouraged to fight? That is not possible. Therefore real social structure should be four divisions, brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya, sudra. Brahmana, fully engaged for enlightenment of the people, knowledge, spiritual knowledge. They are meant for that. They will cultivate that knowledge personally, pathana pathana, and make students. Brahminical class. Similarly ksatriya. They should be trained up in politics, in fighting, not to flee away from fighting. These are the training of the ksatriyas. Similarly, vaisyas, they should be trained up how to cultivate, grow foodgrains, how to give protection to the cows. And sudras are meant for simply serving these higher class, brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya, sudra. That is the program.
So Krsna is encouraging Arjuna because he is a ksatriya. Sva-dharmam api caveksya. It is his duty. The rascals should not take example that: "Krsna encouraged killing. Therefore everyone should kill. There is no sin." Without understanding. This is the difficulty. The rascals they do not understand what is Bhagavad-gita. They interpret for their favorable condition. That's all. Here is Bhagavad-gita. They do not read the whole thing from acaryamisunderstand. Bhagavad-gita is not encouraging violence. That is not the Bhagavad-gita's purpose. But a ksatriya, when there is fight, dharma-yuddha, yuddha dharma... What is that, before we...? Sukhinah ksatriyah partha labhante yuddham idrsam. A ksatriya becomes very satisfied to get such fighting opportunity, yuddham idrsam, yadrcchaya copapannam svarga-dvaram apavrtam, labhante yuddham idrsam. And another place,
sva-dharmam api caveksya
na vikampitum arhasi
dharmyaddhi yuddhac chreyo 'nyat
ksatriyasya na vidyate
Dharmyaddhi-yuddha. There are two kinds of of fighting. Dharma-yuddha. Dharma-yuddha means right, righteous fighting, and adharma-yuddha means political. That is... One politician, he wants to keep his position, he engages the people in fighting, declares war. That is another thing. But when right thing, violence is required. So Arjuna... Krsna is encouraging Arjuna in dharma-yuddha, not unnecessarily killing in the slaughterhouse. Do not misunderstand Krsna. The rascals, they misunderstand. By killing, by his whims, he gives the evidence of... Another rascal, although he is learned professor, he says that because this man has killed on the basis of Bhagavad-gita, therefore Krsna is immoral. Just see. This is going on. Without understanding Bhagavad-gita, even a so-called learned scholar also talking of Krsna as immoral. He has encouraged killing. Just see. Such envious persons. And he is teaching Bhagavad-gita. This is going on.
So this is not the fact. The fact is that there must be in the society, four classes of men. Because sometimes violence is required. Just like why government is maintaining the police force, the military force? It is required for keeping law and order. So violence is bad. That's all right. But sometimes it is required. Just like poison. Poison is bad, but sometimes it is required for administering medicine. Even poison is administered. When one's heart is... According to Ayur-vedic system, when the man's heart is almost to fail, at that time, poison is given. So the heart becomes again agitated. In the medical science also. So poison is poison, but sometimes it requires as medicine administration. Similarly, violence, killing is bad. But there is circumstances where violence is righteous, religious. Therefore Krsna says dharmyaddhi-yuddha.
So it is the ksatriya. Ksatriya means who gives protection the citizens from being hurt by the irreligious person. That is called ksatriya. Ksat. Ksat means injury, and tra means deliver. Just like Maharaja Pariksit. When he saw that a black man Kali was going to kill a cow, so he was going to inflict injury to the cow, and immediately Maharaja Pariksit took his sword, that to give protection to the cow from the injury of black man. So that violence required. Tit for tat. One who is going to commit violence unnecessarily, the king, government, should immediately take the sword and kill that person. That is government's duty. Had it been Vedic culture prevailing now, all these persons who are unnecessarily killing the cows in the slaughterhouse, they would have been killed by the king. "You have done so sinful." So that kind of killing is pious. To give protection innocent citizen or animals from being injured by the rascals, the government or the king should take his sword and kill immediately. This kind of killing is there in the Bhagavad-gita. Not that general killing. You can capriciously kill anyone and give the evidence, "Oh, it is Bhagavad-gita. It is there." How... See how rascals, they are interpreting. Therefore we are presenting Bhagavad-gita as it is, without interpreting in a rascal's way.
So Krsna says in two ways that "If you don't fight, then your enemies will blaspheme you." Avacya-vadams ca vadisyanti bahun. "They'll concoct, manufacture some blasphemy against you. You are becoming very much sorry to fight with your kinsmen. Undoubtedly you are very sorry. But if you are blasphemed, defamed by your enemies, better, before getting that, you better die in the fight. And dying, by dying, you are not loser. Because hato va prapsyasi svargam. Even if you die, don't think that you are loser, because immediately you are promoted to the heavenly planets. Because you are fighting for the right cause, it becomes punyavan, righteous. The heavenly planet is meant for righteous persons. So by dying, by your death in this righteous fighting, you'll be promoted to the heavenly planets. So both ways you will be profited." Hato va prapsyasi svargam and jitva va bhoksyase mahim. "And if you become victorious, then you enjoy the kingdom. So both ways you are profited. There is no loss on your part. Tasmat, therefore uttistha kaunteya yuddhaya krta niscayah. Krta niscayah. Definitely decide it that: 'I must fight. Fighting must be there.' Yuddhaya. For matter of fighting, uttistha, get up. Why are you sitting like coward?" Encouraging.
That's all right. We can read another verse. There is little time.
Pradyumna: (leads chanting, etc.)
Here, in this material world, when you work, there are two things, either loss or gain. Either happiness or distress, sukha-duhkha. Loss or gain, victory or... what is called the opposite?
Devotee: Defeat.
Prabhupada: Defeat. Because it is the world of duality. There must be something dual, black-white, darkness-light, sukha, happiness-distress, father-son. There must be. This is called relative world. One thing, if you understand one thing, you must know the other thing, opposite. Otherwise, it has no meaning. In the absolute world, there is no such thing, opposite elements. So here, Krsna is suggesting about the absolute duty, labhalabhau. When there is loss or gain, you are the same. Generally, when there is gain, we are very jubilant. And when there is loss, we become morose. But here, Krsna is teaching that "You remain in one position, either it is loss or gain. Either it is victory or defeat. Either it is happiness or distress." This is brahma-bhuta [SB 4.30.20]. Brahma-bhutah prasannatma na socati na kanksati [Bg. 18.54]. A devotee is always prasannatma, because his happiness is to serve Krsna. His only business is to see Krsna happy, that's all. This is devotion. There may be loss or gain, there may be victory or defeat, there may be distress or happiness, it doesn't matter. He's not affected with this duality. That is being taught now. Real Bhagavad-gita begins here. Krsna is teaching. In the last also... This will go on in different languages up to the end of the Bhagavad-gita. Mam ekam saranam vraja. That's all. Samsiddhir hari-tosanam [SB 1.2.13]. Bhagavata also confirms this. You do not look after whether it is loss or gain, but you have to see whether Krsna is satisfied. That's all. That is your only business. That is your only business. That is explained in the Srimad-Bhagavatam:
Hari-tosanam. The real perfection of life is whether by your actions, Krsna is satisfied. That is perfection. You don't consider of your personal victory, defeat, loss or gain, or distress or happiness. Therefore Bhaktivinoda Thakura has sung that: "When I work very difficult task for Krsna, that difficult task becomes very happiness for me. That difficult task becomes very happiness for me." That is the standard of happiness. In the material world, there is duality. In the absolute world, there is simply happiness. There is nothing else. Just like when Krsna is going to Mathura, all the gopis become very, very distressed, crying. But we cannot understand what is the happiness of that distress. That we cannot understand from this material point of view. That is greatest happiness. When the gopis were crying in separation from Krsna, that is greater happiness than meeting Krsna, than meeting Krsna. This is Krsna philosophy. That is now beginning.
Thank you very much. (end)

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