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Bhagavad-gita 7.1-3

Paris, June 13, 1974
Devotee: (leads chanting, etc.) "Now hear, O son of Prtha, Arjuna, how by practicing yoga in full consciousness of Me, with mind attached to Me, you can know Me in full, free from doubt."
Prabhupada: (translated throughout)
We are speaking from Bhagavad-gita. I think most of you know this book, Bhagavad-gita. The Bhagavad-gita is sometimes translated in foreign languages: "The Song of God." In other words, God Himself speaking. So far we are concerned, we cannot understand God by mental speculation. Even in this material world, we cannot understand what is there in the planetary systems. So our knowledge is very, very limited. Besides that, we have got four deficiencies.
The one deficiency is that we commit mistake. Anyone, any big man of this material world, he commits mistake. Besides that, he is illusioned. Illusioned means to accept something what is not fact. Just like... (coughs) (aside:) Water. We accept this body as self. This is called illusion. According to Vedic understanding, anyone who thinks of this body as the self, he's animal. Just like a dog, he thinks that he is the body, similarly, if a man thinks that he is this body, he is American or Indian or Frenchman or German or Hindu or Muslim, with this bodily concept of life, so, according to Vedic understanding, this conception is animal conception. So this is called illusion.
Then next item is cheating. Cheating means with imperfect knowledge one takes the place of a teacher. And the last deficiency is that our senses are imperfect. It is not independent. Still, we are very much proud of our senses. For example, atheist class of men, they say that "Can you show me God?" He does not think whether he has got any power to see. So far our eyes are concerned, we can see so long when the conditions are fulfilled. Just like we are speaking. As soon as the light will be off, we cannot see one another. So what is the value of these eyes? You simply see under certain conditions. You simply smell under certain conditions. You can hear under certain condition. So therefore your materialistic life is conditional life.
So with imperfect senses, we cannot understand what is God. The only sense is very, I mean to, usable, just is this ear. Just like man is sleeping, and some enemy has come to attack him or to kill him. So still he's nicely sleeping. But if some friend cries, "Mr. such and such, wake up, wake up! Here is enemy. He'll kill you, kill you!" He can rise up. So when all other senses are useless, the ear can work. Therefore, to understand God, we have to use this ear. And we have to receive the sound vibration and it will act.
So as you are all ladies and gentleman interested in the yoga system, so the first-class yoga system is bhakti-yoga. In this Bhagavad-gita, just now I am trying to explain the first verse of the Seventh Chapter. The Seventh Chapter begins after concluding the Sixth Chapter. In the Sixth Chapter, the yoga system has been explained. It is said that one has to select a very sacred, secluded place. He has to sit down there in a posture just like a perpendicular, a straight line, the neck and the body. And then he has to think of Krsna or Visnu. The thinking should be so careful that one cannot divert his attention to any other subject matter. In the Patanjala yoga system, it is said yoga indriya-samyama: yoga means to control all the senses. Because unless the senses are controlled, the mind will be flickering, go this way, that way, that way. So mind is the leader of all other senses. If you control the mind, concentrate on the feature of the Supreme Lord, that is the yoga system. The, in the... Therefore, describing the yoga system, Krsna prescribes so many methods, but after hearing the system of practicing yoga, Arjuna replied that "Krsna, this system is so difficult I cannot practice it."
So point is that Arjuna was not ordinary person. He was specifically friend of Krsna. So he said that "This practice of yoga, hatha-yoga, is not possible by me." So Krsna therefore concluded the yoga system that "Don't be discertain. There is another yoga system, bhakti-yoga system. You can adopt it." The bhakti-yoga is summarized in the Sixth Chapter of Bhagavad-gita:
yoginam api sarvesam
sraddhavan bhajate yo mam
sa me yuktatamo matah
[Bg. 6.47]
You find out this last verse of the Sixth Chapter. So this is the topmost system of yoga, bhakti-yoga, always thinking of Krsna. So that system, bhakti-yoga system, is being described in the Seventh Chapter as
"My dear Arjuna, the..." Mayy asakta-manah. "Just try to divert your attachment to Me." Attachment, we have got attachment. Everyone has got attachment to something. So this yoga system, bhakti-yoga system, means simply divert the attachment to Krsna. That's all. When the mind is fully diverted for increasing attachment of Krsna, that is called bhakti-yoga.
So yogam yunjan mad-asrayah. This yoga system should be practiced, the mad-asraya... Mad-asraya means "under My direct supervision." This yoga system means it is not impersonal—personal. And therefore the word is used, bhagavan uvaca: "The Supreme Personality of Godhead said." Bhagavan, the Absolute Truth, He's a person. Sometimes we think... There are many, they think the Absolute Truth is impersonal. But the Absolute Truth is person. Impersonal realization of the Absolute Truth is partial. It is not complete realization. Therefore it is mentioned here, asamsayam, "without any doubt" and samagram, "in full." After all, yoga system means an endeavor to understand the Absolute Truth. Yoga means linking, connecting.
So when you connect with the Absolute Truth, that is called yoga. Yoga... Another meaning is plus, adding something else. Just like two plus two. This is also called yoga. Similarly, God is one; I am also one. When we join together, that is called yoga. There are many methods of yoga practice, but the direct method is bhakti-yoga. I am a person, and God is also a person. When we intermingle together, or we join together, that is called bhakti-yoga. Bhakti means the process of connecting with the Supreme Personality of Godhead. As soon as we use the word bhakti, means the process of devotion, there must be bhakta and Bhagavan. The Bhagavan is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and bhakta is Arjuna. So Bhagavan is personally teaching Arjuna the process how he can understand Him fully and without any doubt. Therefore it is mentioned here, bhagavan uvaca. Bhagavan uvaca means "the Supreme Personality of Godhead said."
So the Absolute Truth is realized in three angle of vision. It is said in the Vedic literature,
vadanti tat tattva-vidas
tattvam yaj jnanam advayam
brahmeti paramatmeti
bhagavan iti sabdyate
[SB 1.2.11]
The Absolute Truth is the ultimate truth, tattva. Tattva means Absolute Truth. So those who are aware of the Absolute Truth, they say that Absolute Truth is one, but He's realized in three angle of vision, namely, Brahman, Paramatma, and Bhagavan. Those who are trying to speculate and understand the Absolute Truth, they can realize up to impersonal Brahman. So generally, speculators means big, big philosophers. They can understand that impersonal Brahman. These impersonalists are generally known as jnanis. Jnanis means the wise men or persons who are very much aware of everything. So they can understand the impersonal feature of the Absolute Truth. But there are other class who are called yogis. The yogis can understand the Paramatma feature of the Absolute Truth. Paramatma means the Supersoul who is situated within everyone's heart. And the personal feature of the Lord is realized by the bhaktas, or the devotees.
So the jnanis and the yogis, they cannot understand perfectly what is God. God is transcendental, sat-cit-ananda, combination of eternity, knowledge and blissfulness. So if we realize the Absolute Truth partially, simply the eternity knowledge, that is called brahma-jnana. And when one is further advanced and he realizes the Absolute Truth as the localized aspect, Paramatma, or Lord Visnu within anyone's heart, by the yogic practice, that is called paramatma-jnana, or knowledge of the Absolute Truth. Actually, the objective is one, but different degrees of understanding. One example can be given in this connection. Just like the sun globe and the sun-god and the sunshine. The sunshine is also light, and there is temperature, and the sun globe is also light, and there is temperature, and within the sun globe, there is the personality known as sun-god, that is also light and temperature. But all this light and temperature, there are degrees. The sunshine degree of temperature and light is less than the sun globe, and the sun globe temperature and light is less than the sun-god. So when you reach the sun-god, then you understand the complete temperature and light. That completeness is realized by this word, bhagavan. Therefore the words are used here, asamsayam samagram: "You can understand Me in full, asamsayam, and without any doubt." So if you are interested to understand the Absolute Truth, God, then you must take to bhakti-yoga. And if we want to understand the Absolute Truth with some doubt, and not in complete, then we may take jnana-yoga, dhyana-yoga.
So our, this Krsna consciousness movement is meant for understanding the Absolute Truth in complete, without any doubt, and without any incompleteness. This is also confirmed in the Eighteenth Chapter, that if you want to know God in completeness and without any doubt, then you have to take to bhakti-yoga process. It is said,
The meaning is that "One can understand Me only by this bhakti-yoga process. And when one is fully aware of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, then he becomes fit to enter into the Kingdom of God." So the purpose of yoga practice is to promote or to leave this material atmosphere and enter into the spiritual atmosphere. All the yogis, the jnana-yogi, they remain in the impersonal feature of the Absolute Truth. The dhyana-yogi is practicing the localized aspect, but the bhakti-yogi, he is promoted directly in the planet which is called Goloka Vrndavana, and there he associates with the Supreme Personality of Godhead and enjoys life blissfully, eternally.
So there are different planetary systems within this material world. Just like we are situated, it is called Bhurloka. Above this, there is Bhuvarloka. Above that, there is Svarloka, there is Janaloka, there is Maharloka, Satyaloka. In this way, there are seven steps of planetary systems up, and similarly, seven planetary systems down. So by jnana-yoga, by bhakti-yoga, dhyana-yoga, means mystic yoga system, we can be promoted to the higher system, but if you practice the bhakti-yoga, then you go to the transcendental world directly and associate with the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The dhyana-yogi and jnana-yogi can also go to the Brahmaloka or brahmajyoti, but there is chance of falling down again to this material world. But generally, jnana-yogi remains a speculator within this material world, and dhyana-yogi, they, as soon as they get some material miracle power, they become implicated with this power, no more going to the spiritual world. But bhakti-yogi, being perfectly the yogi, the topmost yogi, he can enter the kingdom of God, or the planet where God is there. God is everywhere, but He has got a special planet, which is called Goloka Vrndavana. You can enter there and mix with the Supreme Lord just like we are here, mixing one another. I can see you, you can see me, similarly, you can go directly, see God and live with Him, dance with Him, play with Him, eat with Him. That is the perfection of life.
This perfection of yoga can be achieved by practicing bhakti-yoga as it is recommended here: mayy asakta-manah partha yogam yunjan mad-asrayah, under the guidance of the Supreme Personality of Godhead or His representative, bona fide. If you practice this yoga, then you can understand the Supreme Personality of Godhead in complete, without any doubt. And if you practice this yoga in this life, and try to understand Krsna, what He is, then, after giving up this body—you have to give up this body, today or tomorrow—then you go directly to Krsna. It is therefore explained in the Fourth Chapter, janma karma me divyam yo janati tattvatah punar janma naiti mam eti kaunteya [Bg. 4.9]. "My dear Arjuna, anyone, if he simply tries to understand why I come in this material world, what is My mission, what do I do, if he simply one understands, then he immediately becomes fit for being transferred to the spiritual world." So our Krsna consciousness movement is to educate people how to understand Krsna, and then make his life perfect.
Thank you very much. Any question?
Translator: (translating questions from guests) So he's saying that many people are wondering why we are making so much propaganda for our Krsna consciousness movement. Because usually India doesn't make propaganda for philosophy.
Prabhupada: He does not know what is India. In India, he'll see, village to village, they're chanting Hare Krsna. In every village, in every town, there is a place which is called hari-sabha. Or every neighborhood, there is... Now, after the British rule, they have forgotten this culture, but they, originally, every village, every town, there is a club or society where this Hare Krsna chanting is going on. And, besides that, five hundred years ago, when Caitanya Mahaprabhu was there, He, all over India He traveled and preached this sankirtana movement. Not only that, He has ordered to His followers, to His devotees... Not only devotees, He has ordered to every Indian to preach the sankirtana movement all over the world. So He has said in these words, that
Means "Anyone who has taken birth in India as human being, he must make his life perfect and preach this cult all over the world." And He has also said,
Means that "As many villages and towns are there on the surface of the globe, everywhere this Hare Krsna mantra will be preached." So this Hare Krsna movement, or Krsna consciousness, has just begun. You will see in future, in every village, every town, they'll chant and dance. So it is the Caitanya Mahaprabhu's prediction that is being fulfilled. Nobody can check it. Already we have got about hundred branches all over the world, and all kinds of people taking part to this movement. [break]
Translator: So his question is that how can Catholic people, without rejecting their own religion, take to Krsna consciousness?
Prabhupada: Well, it is not rejecting; it is reforming. The Catholic religion also teaches love of God, or love of Christ. So if I say the truth, it will not be very palatable, but this movement is reformation. But another thing is Catholic, Hindu, Muslim, or whatever you may be, everyone accepts there is God. So we are teaching not to formally accept there is God, but know what is God and love Him. So those who are interested for higher knowledge of God, they'll take it. The point is simply officially to accept God, There is God, know. You know what is God, what is His..., what He is doing, what He is acting, what is His name, what is His address. Everything you know and try to love Him. That we are teaching. So those who are actually serious to know about God, they'll come to this movement. And those who simply know God officially: "There is God. That's all," that is different thing. That is also good. But if you want to know more, then you have to take this Krsna consciousness. We are therefore presenting these books, eighty books, four hundred pages each, and just to explain what is God. So it is a great science. Any intelligent man will appreciate. And we are getting good response. Especially in America, big, big university, college, professors, they are now purchasing. We have proposed to publish Srimad-Bhagavatam in sixty volumes, but we have published only fourteen. But still, the big, big professors, they are giving us order, forward order, for all the sixty volumes. As soon as scholarly people, they read these books, they'll welcome this movement all over the world. Is that all right, or any more? Any more questions?
Translator: She would like to know if our religion can bring something more than the other religions.
Prabhupada: There is one religion. One who knows God, he is religious. One who does not know God, that religion has no meaning. Religion means to understand the order of God. That is religion. But if you do not know what is God, and how you can hear His order? So religion without understanding God philosophically and logically is sentiment. And philosophy without understanding of God is mental speculation. So when philosophy and religious sentiments combine, that is called religion. Otherwise, it is not religion.
Prabhupada: Yes. (end)

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