Bhagavad-gita 7.1

Bhuvanesvara, January 22, 1977
(translated throughout) Last night some gentleman questioned, "What is God?" Bhagavan, especially in our country, Bharatavarsa, Bhagavan personally comes. Yada yada hi dharmasya glanir bhavati bharata tadatmanam srjamy aham [Bg. 4.7]. So Bharatavarsa is not an ordinary country. It is punya-bhumi where Bhagavan comes. So in this land at the present moment our young men are inquiring what is God. Here Bhagavan comes personally, He leaves His instruction, He's accepted by the acaryas, and our young men have become so much advanced in education that they're asking what is God.
So we should understand what is the situation at the present moment. So why this has happened? It has happened because we are making progress towards animal civilization. Because in the sastra it is said,
yasyatma-buddhih kunape tri-dhatuke
sva-dhih kalatradisu bhauma ijya-dhih
yat-tirtha-buddhih salile na karhicij
janesv abhijnesu sa eva go-kharah
[SB 10.84.13]
Anyone who has got this bodily conception of life and in relation to the body the family, country, society, we are thinking they are our kinsmen... And bhauma ijya-dhih, the land which the body is produced, we are taking that land as worshipable. And when we go to the holy places... Just like people come to Jagannatha Puri. They take bath in the sea water, salile, salile, but do not associate with experienced men who are advanced in spiritual consciousness—such person is nothing but cow or ass or animals. Therefore the question has been raised, "What is God?" We shall be careful, at least in India, that we may not glide down more and more to the animal platform of life. (aside:) Why they are being driven away? Let them sit down. Ask them to sit down. That's all. Let them sit down. They'll simply hear. That will also benefit. Anyway...Let them sit down. Even they cannot understand, if they hear the voice they will be benefited.
Therefore, because in this material world people are inclined to stand on the animal platform of life, that is dharmasya glanih. So Krsna..., yada yada hi dharmasya glanir bhavati [Bg. 4.7]. This is dharmasya glanih. Means when human society forgets God or Krsna or Bhagavan and simply lives like ordinary animal, cats and dogs, for eating, sleeping, sex life and defense, such society is animal society. Ahara-nidra-bhaya-maithunam ca etat pasubhir naranam. This business—eating, sleeping, sex life and defense—this is common to the animal and to the human being. A cat, a dog also eat, and we are also eating. They are eating in their standard and we are eating in our standard. Sometimes we are eating less than their standard. So eating, the satisfaction of eating, anything you eat the pleasure is the same. A hog is eating stool. He's enjoying the pleasure of eating. And a human being eating very nice palatable food, he's also enjoying the same pleasure. There is no difference. Similarly sleeping also, similarly sex life. A dog is enjoying sex life on the street, and the king is enjoying sex life in the palace. But the pleasure is the same. Similarly defense. If you attack one animal, he knows how to defend himself. He has got also nails and jaws. A tiger or a dog or a cat, if you attack he knows how to defend himself. We may defend with atomic weapon, but the business is the same, ahara-nidra-bhaya-maithunam ca samanyam etat pasubhih...
The particular business of human being is stated in the Vedanta-sutra: athato brahma jijnasa. So these four principles of life, ahara-nidra-bhaya-maithunam, there is no difference. Only difference is a human being can inquire about what is God or what is Brahman. Athato brahma jijnasa. That is the only business of human life. So a cat, a dog cannot inquire about Brahman, but the gentleman inquire about what is God. Because he is human being he could inquire like that. So there is no cause of disappointment. At least our young men in India, at least still inquiring. That is the culture. "What is God?"this is the beginning of human life, when one inquires about Brahman.
So to inquire about Brahman and to understand Brahman by proper inquiry and by proper answer from the proper source, the cultivation of this knowledge is the business of human being. Therefore a class of men in the society known as brahmana, brahma janatiti brahmanah, there is need. There is, necess... The Vedic injunction is tad-vijnanartham sa gurum evabhigacchet [MU 1.2.12]. In order to understand tad-vijnana, brahma-vijnana, one must approach the proper guru or spiritual master. Unfortunately we have rejected at the present moment the persons who are actually brahmana. On the other hand, in the name of brahmana, some persons claiming as brahmana, they are ruling over the society. But that is not the way. The brahmana or ksatriya or vaisya, sudra, they are ascertained by the symptom. In the Bhagavad-gita it is clearly said, catur-varnyam maya srstam guna-karma-vibhagasah: [Bg. 4.13] "I have created these four divisions of society, brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya, and sudra. So that should be divided according to the qualification and work." Just like if you are qualified as a medical man and if you are practicing as a medical man, then you are medical man. Simply by posing yourself that "I am the son of a medical man; therefore I am medical man," this is useless. In the sastras, a person born of a brahmana family or a person born of a ksatriya family but his qualities are not brahmana, ksatriya, he is called brahma-bandhu, ksatri-bandhu, not brahmana.
So in the Bhagavata it is stated stri-sudra-dvijabandhunam trayi na sruti-gocara [SB 1.4.25]. Stri, woman, and sudra and dvija-bandhu. Dvija means brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya. Especially brahmana. So dvija-bandhu, who is not qualified as a brahmana but born in the brahmana family, they are called dvija-bandhus. So sastra says stri-sudra-dvijabandhunam trayi na sruti-gocara. Woman, sudra and brahma-bandhu or dvija-bandhu, they cannot understand Vedic knowledge. Unfortunately we are creating, trying to create real brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya, and sudra means everyone. One who cannot become a brahmana or a ksatriya or vaisya, simply they are satisfied by serving a suitable master, vaisya-karma svabhava-jam. Paricaryatmakam karyam sudra-karma svabhava-jam [Bg. 18.44]. A person who is satisfied only getting some salary from a suitable master, that is sudra. So in this age it is said, kalau sudra-sambhavah. It is very difficult to find out a qualified brahmana, ksatriya. We may find out some sudras and some vaisyas. Therefore, if you want to raise the standard of human society, you must create a class of brahmana, a class of ksatriya. Vaisya and sudras maybe there are. But it is necessary that a class of brahmana, a class of ksatriya must be there.
So this Krsna consciousness movement is trying to reestablish daiva-varnasrama, where brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya, sudra, everyone. Systematic. We are, therefore, proposing to start a college, varnasrama college. It is proposed... We are trying so many things, but this is also one of the programs, that the people of the world, they should be educated according to the quality and work: brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya, sudra. In the Visnu Purana it is said when Caitanya Mahaprabhu inquired from Ramananda Raya... Ramananda Raya belonged to your province. So when there was talk between Caitanya Mahaprabhu and Ramananda Raya, the first topic was "Where is the beginning of human society?" Ramananda Raya replied, quoting from Visnu Purana,
purusena parah puman
visnur aradhyate pantha
nanyat tat-tosa-karanam
[Cc. Madhya 8.58]
The human society is meant for not only inquiring Brahman but to worship Brahman, Parabrahman. That is human society. So there is necessity of the four classes. At the present moment they are trying to create classless society. That is chaotic society. That is not real society. That is not Vedic civilization. Vedic civilization means when there is classified society begins: brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya, sudra, brahmacari, grhastha, vanaprastha, and sannyasa. And without this classification, the whole society will remain in chaotic condition. Just like the comparison is given, mukha-bahuru. Just like in our body there is mouth, there is uru, there is leg, there is bahu. These divisions are required. Mukha means brahmana, bahu means ksatriya, and uru means the vaisya, and pada means sudra. The body can be maintained when four things are properly maintained. So these things are required, and they should be classified by quality and work. In this way we have to organize society. Then there will be no scarcity of real human being. Otherwise they will remain as animal.
So a systematic society means varnasrama-dharma. But there is another way. That is another way. That is called transcendental society, or Vaisnava society. As it is stated in the Srimad-Bhagavata,
Simply by becoming devotees of Vasudeva, vasudeva-parayana, everything can be adjusted. When Ramananda Raya answered Caitanya Mahaprabhu about the systematic society of human being, Caitanya Mahaprabhu rejected. He said eho bahya age kaha ara. So Sri Ramananda Raya replied, quoting from other verses from sastra, karma-tyaga, sannyasa. In this way, step by step. But when he said that sthane sthitah sruti-gatam tanu-van-manobhih... When Ramananda Raya said that "It doesn't require of any change. Simply if people giving up his own endeavor to understand what is God, what is life. Simply if he remains humbly and hears from the real authority, then by hearing only he can conquer Ajita." Ajita is Bhagavan.
So this Krsna consciousness movement is giving chance to everyone to hear from the authoritative sources, from the sastra. Sadhu sastra guru. These are authorities. So instead of hearing from the unauthorized persons, means... sadhu means who speaks on the basis of sastra. Guru means who speaks on the basis of sastra. They're sadhu guru sastra. And sastra means the statement of authorities. That is sastra. Just like Bhagavad-gita. It is sastra because it is spoken by the supreme guru, Krsna. So who is guru? At the present moment so many unauthorized persons are presenting themselves as guru. But you should be very careful. Guru, Caitanya Mahaprabhu has said, amara ajnaya guru hana tara' ei desa [Cc. Madhya 7.128]. He says that "I order you that you become guru. And your business is to deliver this country." "This country" means wherever you are living, you can become guru and deliver them. And one may say that "You are asking me to become guru but I have no qualification." A sincere man will say like that, "How can I become guru, and how can I deliver this country?" Caitanya Mahaprabhu says it is not difficult: yare dekha tare kaha krsna-upadesa [Cc. Madhya 7.128]. Krsna-upadesa, there are two krsna-upadesa. One krsna-upadesa is what Krsna is speaking personally, Bhagavad-gita. And the other krsna-upadesa, what Vyasadeva is speaking about Krsna. Krsna sa upadesa or krsnena upadesa. Krsnena upadesa—Bhagavad-gita. And instruction about Krsna is Srimad-Bhagavatam.
So my request is that you people of Orissa, you are ordinarily Vaisnava, so take this seriously. Don't be misguided by rascal who is not guru. There is no difficulty. Suppose, as Caitanya Mahaprabhu: yare dekha tare kaha krsna-upadesa [Cc. Madhya 7.128]. You become guru. Whomever you meet you simply speak what Krsna has spoken. That's all. It is already there. You have to repeat only, and you become guru. Our request is that you all respectable gentlemen, you develop this center of ISKCON. We have published so many important books. They are being appreciated all over the world by scholars, by universities. You also study them, learn Krsna science, Krsna consciousness, and preach in your country. That is my request. Our books, mostly they are published in English, and we are getting them translated in other languages of the world, especially in Europe, French language, German language, in Japanese language, Chinese. So those who are very (indistinct) they may come, translate these books into Oriya, and we shall publish them for mass distribution.
Thank you very much.
Indian: (indistinct)
Prabhupada: So, you do not know what is the meaning of Krsna? You do not know?
Indian: (indistinct)
Prabhupada: So you can analyze. Karsana you cannot understand the meaning? Krsna means all-attractive. Krs-karsati. Yes. Krsna means attractive, all-attractive.
Indian: (indistinct)
Prabhupada: And besides that, you do not know Krsna? That is the difficulty. That our people have become so degraded that they are asking what is God, what is Krsna—although Krsna, God, is appeared here and left instructions. This is our position. There is a Bengali word, sat-khanda ramayana sita karbaba.(?) He has studied Seventh (indistinct) of Ramayana, now he's asking who's father is Sita. So this is the position. We are born in the country where Krsna spoke everything, and now we are asking what is the meaning of Krsna, what is God. This is the position. Very degraded position. Tad viddhi pranipatena pariprasnena sevaya [Bg. 4.34].
Indian: God..., or God is behind this manifestation. I am in delusion. This phenomenon...
Prabhupada: Yes. God is behind this manifestation. But one should be intelligent enough to understand who is the person or what is that which is behind this manifestation. Athato brahma jijnasa. That is answered. Janmady asya yatah [SB 1.1.1]. Behind this everything there is a person or there is a thing which is the source of everything. So Krsna says in the Bhagavad-gita, nabhijanati loko mam ajam avyayam: "These foolish rascals do not know that behind this manifestation, I am there."
Indian: Then you have to these names and forms?
Prabhupada: Why forms?
Indian: Simply illusion. I think there is some spiritual behind these names and forms.
Prabhupada: Illusion. Illusion means it is temporary. Just like you dream something. That is called illusion. But dream is actually not illusion. Because although in dream you see some tiger, he's attacking, that is illusion. And you are crying, "Save me! Save me! Here is a tiger!" But one who is awakened, he say, "Why you are crying?" "There is a tiger." "Where is tiger?" This is illusion. But when you are dreaming that there is a tiger, you are crying, that is not illusion. It is acting. Similarly, this material manifestation, it is not illusion, but for the time being it is illusion. We are attracted with this material world, society, friendship and love. But in a second we can be slapped by the material nature and get out of this illusion, just like dream. So in this sense it is illusion, but so long it is there, it is fact also. So chant Hare Krsna. (end)

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