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Bhagavad-gita 7.3

Nairobi, October 29, 1975
Harikesa: "Out of many thousands among men, one may endeavor for perfection, and of those who have achieved perfection, hardly one knows Me in truth."
So to understand Krsna is not very easy thing. Krsna says that manusyanam sahasresu, "Out of many millions of millions' person, one tries to become perfect." Who is going to become perfect, especially in this age? Everyone is working like cats and dogs. That's all. Whole day working for eating, sleeping, sex and defense, that's all. They are not manusyas. Ahara-nidra-bhaya-maithunam ca samanyam etat pasubhih naranam. Eating... I eat; dog eat. So what is the difference between eating between the dog and me? He is eating according to his taste, I am eating also. The eating business is there in the dog also. Don't think that because you are eating on table, chair, plates, nice preparation... It is eating. People are taking that "Because I am eating on table, chair and nice dish and nice preparation, therefore I am civilized." The sastra says that it may be different types of taking the eatables, but it is eating. That is even in dog. It does not make any difference. You are not civilized. Similarly sleeping. The dog can sleep on the street without caring for anything. We cannot sleep without nice apartment. So eating, sleeping, mating... Similarly, sex intercourse. Dog has no shame. It can enjoy sex on the street, but we have got some restriction, but the sex is there. Similarly, defense also, bhaya. Bhaya means to take care of fearfulness. That is there in the dog and in you also. It does not make any difference. Because you have got, discovered atomic bomb for defense, it does not mean that you are better than a dog. This is shastric injunction. Because he has to defend himself according to his intelligence and you are defending yourself according to your intelligence.
So this business, four business—eating, sleeping, mating and defending—these are common. Ahara-nidra-bhaya-maithunam samanyam etat. This is common. Then what is the special advantage of human life? The special advantage is athato brahma jijnasa. Jivasya tattva-jijnasa. You should be inquisitive to know the value of life, the Absolute Truth. That is... The dog cannot do it. That is the distinction between dog and human being. The human being... In the human form of life there should be inquiry about Brahman, Parabrahman. That is human life. So after inquiring what is Brahman, Parabrahman, janmady asya yatah [SB 1.1.1], the original source of everything, when you attain brahma-jnana, brahma-bhutah, that is your perfection, not that to compete with the dog in eating, sleeping, mating and defending. That is not civilization. That is not perfection of life. Na te viduh svartha-gatim hi visnum [SB 7.5.31]. These foolish men, animalistic, dogs and cats, two-legged animals, they do not know what is the aim of life.
Na te viduh svartha-gatim hi visnum. The aim of life is to understand Visnu, the Supreme Lord. Durasaya ye bahir-artha-maninah. They are trying to become happy in the bahir-artha, in the external energy of God, material energy. And the so-called leaders, politicians, philosophers, scientists, they're all blind. They do not know what is the aim of life. Still, they are leading the whole society.
na te viduh svartha-gatim hi visnum
durasaya ye bahir-artha-maninah
andha yathandhair upaniyamanas
te 'pisa-tantryam uru-damni baddhah
[SB 7.5.31]
Uru-damni baddhah. Uru means very strong, and damni means rope. Just like if I tie you with very strong rope, it is very difficult to open it, and you are put into difficulty. Similarly, we are in this material world uru-damni baddhah, tied very tight with the laws of material nature. And we are declaring still, "I am free. I am independent, I can do whatever I like." This is called imperfection. So long we are in the bodily concept of life and think ourself that we are free to do anything, whatever we like, we are in ignorance, darkness, tama. Tama means darkness.
So Vedic injunction is tamasi ma jyotir gama. "Don't remain in darkness." This is darkness. Darkness means "I am this body, and the, to fulfill the necessities of the body is the highest perfection of my life." Everyone is trying for that, competition. Everyone is trying to have a skyscraper building and three Rolls Royce cars and so on, so on. They think that this is perfection of life, durasaya, durasaya ye bahir-artha-maninah [SB 7.5.31], this material energy's production. But you do not think that "How many years I shall enjoy this skyscraper building? And what is my main business? My main business is how to become perfect." There are many animals within the skyscraper building. There are human being, there are dogs, there are cats, there are worms, rats, so many things. So to live in the skyscraper building, that facility is there even to the worms, cats, rats, everyone. That... Then what is the difference between these animals and me? The difference is how to become perfect, siddhi, svarupa-siddhi. "What I am? Am I this body?" This should be the question. Athato brahma jijnasa.
So Krsna says here that "Ultimate goal is to understand Me," vetti mam tattvatah, to understand Krsna in fact, in truth, not superficially. That is required. Vedais ca sarvair aham eva vedyah [Bg. 15.15]. If you are a great scholar studying all kinds of literature, Vedas, then you must know Krsna. If you do not understand Krsna and simply you study Vedas, it is useless waste of time.
You are executing your occupational duties very nicely honestly. That is all right. But after executing your duties very honestly and nicely, if you do not awaken your dormant Krsna consciousness, then srama eva hi kevalam. You are simply wasting your time. Useless. When you understand Krsna, then it is the highest perfection. Samsiddhim paramam gatah. So nobody is interested. Therefore Krsna says, manusyanam sahasresu: [Bg. 7.3] "Out of many millions of persons, one may be interested." Otherwise all are in darkness.
So what is that siddhi? Siddhi, to understand one's constitutional position, "What I am." I am trying to lord if over the material nature in so many ways. Is that my position? But I am failure. I am trying to lord it over the material nature as big man, as the minister or as the zamindar, as the big business magnate, and when I am failure, then I want to become God. That is another ambition. That is another ambition. So this is not self-realization. The self-realization is that "I am trying to lord it over the material nature in so many ways, but it is becoming baffled. Why? Why it is becoming baffled? And with great endeavor, by political movements, I become the head of the political institution of the state, but I do not wish to die. Death comes and he takes away everything, my political position, my wealth, my everything, family and anything." Mrtyuh sarva-haras caham [Bg. 10.34]. "Who is taking that? That is Krsna."
So when we realize that, that "I am trying to accumulate so many things, but Krsna is taking away," then why don't you surrender to Krsna so that He may not take away your position? That is intel... That is siddhi. That is siddhi, that "I am not independent. I am trying independently, but it is not possible. I am dependent. I am eternal servant of Krsna." That is self-realization. That has been taught by Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Jivera svarupa haya nitya-krsna-dasa [Cc. Madhya 20.108-109]. The Brahman realization aham brahmasmi, that is liberation from material conception of life that "I am not this matter. I am not this body, but I am spirit soul." Aham brahmasmi. That is the first step of realization, self-realization. But that is not final. The final realization is that "I am eternal servant of Krsna." That is final realization. So long you do not come to this position, the final constitutional position, that "We are eternal servant of Krsna," the knowledge is lacking; there is no perfection of knowledge.
Therefore Krsna says in the Bhagavad-gita, bahunam janmanam ante: [Bg. 7.19] "After many, many births," jnanavan, "when one actually self-realized, in awareness, fully in knowledge, then he understands," vasudevah sarvam iti [Bg. 7.19], "Vasudeva is the supreme everything. I am simply part and parcel of Vasudeva, eternal servant of Vasudeva." Vasudevah sarvam iti sa mahatma sudurlabhah [Bg. 7.19]. That kind of perfect person, mahatma, is very, very rare, to understand that "I am eternal servant of Krsna. My only business is to serve Krsna. That is my constitutional position. I am part and parcel of Krsna." This finger is part and parcel of my body. His business is to serve the whole body. I ask the finger, "Come here"; immediately... This is the normal, healthy condition of the part and parcel. Just like leg is my part and parcel of the body. As soon as I ask leg, "Please take me there..." That is normal. And if the leg cannot take me there—I have to take some stick—that means this is an..., not normal. It is diseased condition. It has to be treated. Similarly, as soon as we find that we do not abide by the orders of Krsna, we must know that you are in ignorance and in abnormal condition, madness. That is my duty. Krsna does not require my help, and still, He says, sarva-dharman parityajya mam ekam saranam vraja [Bg. 18.66]. That is my good. If I surrender to Krsna, then that is my benefit. Krsna does not require my service. He is omnipotent. But we are so rascal, we think, "Why shall I surrender to Krsna?" This is imperfection.
So when you come to this point, that you abide by the order of Krsna and surrender to Him, that is perfection. But they do not do that.
Why they do not surrender? Now, because duskrtina, always acting sinful activities, duskrtina, and mudha, rascal. He does not know his own interest. Na te viduh svartha-gatim hi visnum [SB 7.5.31]. Mudha, rascal. And then naradhama. Naradhama means lowest of the mankind. "This human body was given to him by material nature to understand Me, to surrender to Me, but he will not do this. Therefore lowest of the mankind." "No, he is so educated." No, this is nonsense. If he does not understand Krsna, what is the meaning of education? There is no education. Mayayapahrta-jnanah. Why these things are...? Asuram bhavam asritah. He's defying Krsna, defying God, "What is God? I am God." This is the position.
This is the position always of everyone who is in this material world, and especially in this age, Kali-yuga. Kali-yuga, they are all first-class fools. That is described in the Srimad-Bhagavatam. Mandah sumanda-matayo manda-bhagya upadrutah [SB 1.1.10], prayenalpayusah sabhya kalav asmin yuge janah. The Kali-yuga is very difficult yuga. In ignorance they fight, quarrel, only fight, quarrel. Kali means fight. Therefore it is called Kali-yuga. So in this age especially, the inhabitants, they are manda. Manda means all bad. Nobody is good. And sumanda, matayah. Everyone has got his conception of perfection—all bogus. Sumanda-matayah. Why this is? Manda-bhagyah: because they are unfortunate. Everyone does not know what he shall eat next morning or in the evening. Everyone is in need. Scarcity all over the world. Mandah sumanda-matayo manda-bhagyah. And still, they are disturbed, so many. Especially with the increase of Kali-yuga, people will be disturbed by two things especially. What is that? Scarcity of food and taxation. That is stated in the Srimad-Bhagavatam. Durbhiksa-kara-piditah [SB 12.2.9]. Kara means taxation. The people will be embarrassed for want of food, at the same time, every year, increase of taxation. That is stated in the Bhagavata. Durbhiksa-kara-piditah. So much disturbed that they will give up their hearth and home and go away in the forest. Durbhiksa-kara-piditah. Acchinna-dara-dravina yasyanti giri-kananam. Dara-dravina, money, wife, children, everything—they will be disgusted: "Now it is impossible to maintain. Let me go away." Yasyanti giri-kananam.
So this is the Kali-yuga position. So five thousand years ago, when Krsna spoke about Bhagavad-gita, at that time the position was manusyanam sahasresu [Bg. 7.3]. So sahasra. Now, on account of Kali-yuga, manusyanam "millions," because it has increased. The Kali-yuga has increased. Not sahasresu, and the percentage has increased millions and millions. Therefore nobody is interested in this Krsna consciousness movement. We are trying to give the highest perfection of life, but they are not interested. They want to remain like cats and dogs and suffer the consequence. Prakrteh kriyamanani gunaih karmani sarvasah, ahankara-vimudhatma [Bg. 3.27]. This is going on.
So Krsna consciousness movement is very difficult to understand, but by the grace of Krsna, it has been made very easy. Easy. That is stated in the Srimad-Bhagavatam. Kaler dosa-nidhe rajann asti hy eko mahan gunah. It was explained by Sukadeva Gosvami to Pariksit Maharaja. He described the faults of the Kali-yuga, but he encouraged by one verse. "My dear king, there is one very nice opportunity in this Kali-yuga." Kaler dosa-nidhe. Dosa-nidhi: "It is the ocean of faults, but there is one very nice gain in this Kali-yuga." What is that? Kirtanad eva krsnasya mukta-sangah param vrajet: [SB 12.3.51] "Simply by chanting Hare Krsna mantra one can become free from all the troubles of this yuga, Kali-yuga," and mukta-sanga, "and he becomes liberated, and he goes back to home, back to Godhead." So take it very seriously and make your life perfect.
Thank you very much. [break]
That he has to learn, how to become humble. Trnad api sunicena taror api sahi... If you preach Krsna consciousness, so many people will chastise you. The government will not allow you to go on the public street, and you'll not get visa. You'll be refused to enter. So you have to tolerate all these things. That is humbleness.
Devotee (1): Srila Prabhupada, he states about Africa, that the food..., that they do not know what to eat tomorrow, and in fact, that here it's very hard for them to understand Krsna consciousness. My question is which, what can we do which is...?
Prabhupada: Go and chant Hare Krsna and give them food. They are hungry. Then it will be successful. Chant Hare Krsna, let them come and dance with you, and give them prasadam. They are hungry. It will be success. It is not difficult at all. That was Caitanya Mahaprabhu's preaching to the mass of people. He would chant for four hours, and after finishing kirtana, He'll give them sumptuous food to eat. Caitanya Mahaprabhu was doing this. So you can do this. You collect money not for your eating but for distribution of prasadam. That is required. And if you do that, Krsna will send you. Yoga-ksemam vahamy aham [Bg. 9.22]. There will be no need. We have got about 102 centers, and each center, there are so many people, up to 250, and not less than fifty. So Krsna is sending their food. There is no scarcity. We do not do any business. We do not go to serve in the office, but Krsna is sending. One hundred and two centers, average hundred men—how many? Hundred into hundred? Hm. So ten thousand men we are feeding daily, apart from distribution to others. So Krsna is sending them. So you can attain. Everything belongs to Krsna. He'll give you supply. You have to attempt only. So chant Hare Krsna and distribute prasadam, your movement will be success.
Devotee (2): Srila Prabhupada, what about... We went out for distributing at some place and then we make them to chant Hare Krsna at that time. And then, if we leave them they forget. Did they become purified?
Prabhupada: Yes. You go constantly. Kirtaniyah sada harih.
The program is that we should chant twenty-four hours Hare Krsna. If not, as far as possible.
Devotee (3): Srila Prabhupada, you said that by chanting Hare Krsna you can go back to home, back to Godhead. So if you chant Hare Krsna maha-mantra and not follow the regulations, not reading your books, can you go back to Godhead?
Prabhupada: Begin chanting. Then everything will be all right. Begin chanting. Then all other things will be adjusted.
There are vidhi-nisedha, regulative principle. If you see that you are unable to follow, then chant Hare Krsna sincerely. Then you'll be able to follow the regulative principles. Automatically.
Devotee (2): Srila Prabhupada, of course, in fact, we are fallen, and sometimes I would like every time to think about Krsna, and...
Prabhupada: That will save you. If you simply think of Krsna and talk of Krsna, that... I think we discussed this verse in the morning. If your mind is always absorbed about Krsna, then you are going to be perfect. Somehow or other, you think of Krsna. Man-mana bhava mad-bhakto mad-yaji mam namaskuru [Bg. 18.65]. This is the chance we are giving. Everyone can think of Krsna. Here is Krsna's form. Everyone can chant Hare Krsna. Everyone can offer obeisances. Everyone can offer some fruits and flowers. This is the opportunity. Man-mana bhava mad-bhakto mad-yaji mam namaskuru [Bg. 18.65]. These four principles. Then gradually develop.
Jnana: Srila Prabhupada, how may we best approach the rulers and the leaders and the politicians to interest them in this?
Prabhupada: You simply go and chant Hare Krsna.
Jnana: Just the same.
Prabhupada: That's all. You flatter them. That other day I you told that our preaching process is this: dante nidhaya trnakam padayor nipatya. According to Vedic civilization, if one approaches before you with a straw in his mouth, that means he is fully surrendered. That is the sign. Therefore Prabodhananda Sarasvati, he is speaking that "With a straw in my mouth," dante nidhaya trnakam. Dante, "teeth," padayor nipatya, "I am just falling down at your lotus feet, and I have come before you with this straw very humbly." Dante nidhaya trnakam padayor nipatya kaku-satam krtva ca: "And I am flattering you hundred times." Then naturally any rogue, any rascal will be pleased: "All right, you can speak something." If you become so humble and meek, there is no man in the world who will say, "No, no, I am not going to hear you." Of course, there are many rascals. They will say so, that "I have no time." So anyway, generally people will hear. So when he says, "All right, what do you want to say?" Dante nidhaya trnakam padayor nipatya kaku-satam krtva ca aham brav..., he sadhavah, again flattering: "O the great sadhu, you are...," although you know he is a great rascal. (laughter) Still, I will have to speak to him. This is the process of preaching. Is that all right? You tell him, "Oh, you are a great sadhu." Then he will be: "Oh, yes, yes. (laughter) You are right. You are right. What do you want from me? Tell me." Then you can say, he sadhavah sakalam eva vihaya durad: "What every rascaldom you have learned, please forget. (laughter) Please forget." "Then what I have to do?" Caitanya-candra-carane kurutanuragam. "You become adhered to the lotus feet of Lord Caitanya. That is my... That's all. So I have brought this Caitanya-caritamrta, seventeen volumes. If you kindly take this..." So they will take. They have got money. And if he reads one line, he'll be perfect. This should be your process of preaching.
Devotee (4): Srila Prabhupada, I heard you ask earlier... You say that by... Animals, they have no inferior act. So after death, what kind of birth will they get?
Prabhupada: According to your karma. That I have repeatedly said. Did you not hear?
Brahmananda: No, he's asking about the animals. What kind of body will they take in their next birth?
Prabhupada: They have got evolution by nature's process. They have got evolution by nature's way. Jalaja nava-laksani sthavara laksa-vimsati krmayo rudra-sankhyakah. First of all aquatic. Because the whole world was filled with water, so there was animals, aquatics. So as the land became visible, then jalaja nava-laksani sthavara laksa-vimsati. Sthavarah means the living entities which cannot move. That means trees and plants, vegetables. So from aquatics to vegetable life, then worm, reptiles, then birds, and then beast, then human being, then civilized men. There is chance of becoming perfect. So nature brings you up to the point of human form of life. Now you make your choice. Athato brahma jijnasa. And if you misuse like cats and dogs, then again go. Again go to the aquatics or cats and dogs according to your karma. That they do not know. Therefore they are called mudhas. They are very much advanced in knowledge and science and money-making, but what they are going to take the body next life, they do not know. Mudho nabhijanati. This is their advancement. Therefore they refuse to believe that there is next life. That is one solace: "Oh, there is no next..." Bhasmi-bhutasya dehasya kutah punar agamano bhavet: "Oh, this body will be burned into ashes, and who is coming back again?" They don't believe. Because if they believe the sastra, then it will be horrible affair for them. But therefore they do not believe. But you believe or not believe, things are going to happen. That's all. That is laws of nature. If you don't believe that you are going to die, it doesn't matter. You have to die. If you don't believe, that "I am not going to become an old man," no, you believe or not believe, you must become old man. This is nature's law. So you believe or not believe in the next life, you have to accept it. Krsna says, tatha dehantara-praptir dhiras tatra na muhyati [Bg. 2.13]. So your believe or not believe doesn't matter. Nature's work will go on.
Indian man: Srila Prabhupada, regarding karma. One does his job every day, and if he spends some time in the evening chanting Lord Krsna, do you approve this?
Prabhupada: Oh, yes. Why not? Svalpam apy asya dharmasya trayate mahato bhayat. If you think of Krsna once, that will not go in vain. That is recorded. Svalpam apy asya dharmasya trayate mahato bhayat. Just like Ajamila. At the last stage of his life he chanted "Narayana" and became liberated. So something is, about Krsna, is very good. And you'll get chance to increase. If you believe that by chanting Hare Krsna you'll be liberated, then why fifteen minutes? Why not fifteen hours? What is the loss there? If you chant Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, what is the loss? Is there any loss? Then? Why fifteen minutes? Chant. Kirtaniyah sada harih [Cc. Adi 17.31]. As long as you can. Now chant Hare Krsna. (end)

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