Lecture Excerpt

Montreal, June 29, 1968
Prabhupada: ...atma and Paramatma the same, but quantitatively atma and Paramatma different. So the Supersoul is present everywhere. Supersoul is present within you, Supersoul is present within me, Supersoul is present in all ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls present here. But atma is individual atma. He is present in his body. For example, that you can feel what is happening in your body, the pleasure and pains of your body you can feel, but you cannot feel the pleasure and pains of other's body; therefore you are individual. Others are also individual. And the Paramatma, He is everywhere. Andantara-stha-paramanu-cayantara-stham [Bs. 5.35]. This atma and Paramatma, ksetra, ksetrajna is very nicely explained in the Thirteenth Chapter of Bhagavad-gita. You'll profit by reading that. The Lord says that this body is ksetra. Ksetra means the field of activities. Everyone is acting according to the body he has got by the grace of material nature. So the body is the field of activity, and you or me, atma, we are the proprietor of the body. We are called ksetrajna. And Krsna says, ksetra-jnam capi mam viddhi sarve ksetresu bharata. Now I am present in my body, you are present in your body, but the Paramatma, or Supersoul, is present in everyone's body. Another example can be given. Just like this house, there are many apartments. So I am occupying this apartment, another tenant is occupying another apartment. But the landlord is occupier or the proprietor of all the apartments. That is the difference between atma and Paramatma. I am proprietor of the things which has been offered to me by material nature, but God, or Paramatma is the proprietor of everything. That is the difference. Prakrteh kriyamanani gunaih karmani sarvasah [Bg. 3.27]. Prakrti, the material nature, is offering me as I want. She is supplying ingredients. If I want to be human being, then she supplies a similar body, and if I want to become a dog, she supplies similar body.
So actually, we are under the grip of this material nature, and we are being pushed life after life in different bodies by the influence of material nature. Prakrteh kriyamanani gunaih karmani sarvasah [Bg. 3.27]. How prakrti, nature, is working? According to the quality we acquire. Gunaih. There are three qualities: the good quality, the quality of passion, and the quality of ignorance. So we are being contaminated by certain type of quality, and the nature is supplying me a type of body. And there are 8,400,000's of bodies, and we are going through them in a cycle. And as soon as we become, I mean to say, devotee, or we look forward to the Paramatma, then we can be free from the cycle of repeated birth and death. This yoga system is..., meditation means to find out the Paramatma. The Paramatma is described in the sastras: His feature, His body, His hand, Supersoul. And one has to meditate. And by meditation, when one is in samadhi, always thinking of the Supersoul, then he becomes freed from this material entanglement. That is self-realization. That is liberation. So Paramatma and individual atma, or the living creature, they are qualitatively one but quantitatively different. Yes. Yes?
Indian man: Bhagavad-gita explains that every devotee is protected by the Lord, and Prahlada Maharaja, in this life as Prahlada Maharaja, his father becomes a demon, demon, and he has to fight Nrsimha. That means it is the karma of a previous life, and he's praying, he has to pray to the Lord to protect him. Or is it understood that he'll get the protection? So why this prayer?
Prabhupada: He was protected. Devotees are not under the karma. In the Brahma-samhita it is stated, karmani nirdahati kintu ca bhakti-bhajam [Bs. 5.54]. Prahlada Maharaja was tortured by his father in so many ways, but he was not affected. He was not affected. Superficially... Just like in the Christian Bible also, that Lord Jesus Christ was tortured, but he was not affected. This is the difference between ordinary man and the devotees or transcendentalists. Apparently it is seen that a devotee is being tortured, but he is not tortured. There is one example, nice example. Just like the cat. The cat carries the kitties in the mouth, and it carries a mouse also in the mouth. So apparently it is seen that a cat is carrying its kitties in the mouth means it is in pain. But it is not in pain. That is a fact. Rather, she feels very comfortable. You see? But when the cat, the same cat, catches one mouse, his life is gone. But you see that she is carrying in the mouth both of them. Similarly, whenever you'll find that a great devotee is placed into torturing condition, he does not feel. But the demon thinks that "I am torturing him." Yes?
Guest: (indistinct)
Prabhupada: Yes. Govinda is another name of Krsna. Go means cows and go means land and go means senses. There are three meanings of go. So... And vinda means pleasure-giving. So He gives pleasure to the senses, He gives pleasure to the cows, and He gives pleasure to the land. That means whenever Krsna appears, the land becomes very pleasing. The production, the situation, everything becomes very pleasing. So Govinda means one who gives pleasure to the senses and to the cows. Krsna in His abode, Krsnaloka, is always busy as a cowherd's boy. Surabhir abhipalayantam [Bs. 5.29]. He's always nursing the cows. He's always surrounded by cows. Surabhir abhipalayantam. You see here is the picture. It is a cow. Govinda means the cowherd's boy, or one who gives pleasure to the senses. Gopala. Go means cows and pala means herds. So one who keeps the cowherds, that is also Gopala. (end)

Link to this page: https://prabhupadabooks.com/classes/general/excerpt/montreal/june/29/1968

If you Love Me Distribute My Books -- Srila Prabhupada