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Srimad-Bhagavatam 2.3.14-15

Los Angeles, May 31, 1972
Pradyumna: (leads chanting)
etac chusrusatam vidvan
suta no 'rhasi bhasitum
katha hari-kathodarkah
satam syuh sadasi dhruvam
[SB 2.3.14]
Translation: "O learned Suta Gosvami! Please continue to explain such topics to us because we are all eager to hear. Besides that, topics which result in the discussion of the Lord Hari should certainly be discussed in the assembly of devotees."
Prabhupada: What is this? You stop all this. Hear attentively. Don't divert your attention in that way. Then?
Pradyumna: As we have already quoted above from the Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu of Rupa Gosvami, even mundane things, if dovetailed in the service of the Lord Sri Krsna, are accepted as transcendental. For example, the epics or the histories of Ramayana and Mahabharata, which are specifically recommended for the less intelligent classes (women, sudras and unworthy sons of the higher castes), are also accepted as Vedic literature because they are compiled in connection with the activities of the Lord. Mahabharata is accepted as the fifth division of the Vedas after its first four divisions, namely Sama, Yajur, Rg and Atharva. The less intelligent do not accept Mahabharata as part of the Vedas, but great sages and authorities accept it as the fifth division of the Vedas. Bhagavad-gita is also part of the Mahabharata, and it is full of the Lord's instruction for the less intelligent class of men. Some less intelligent men say that Bhagavad-gita is not meant for householders, but such foolish men forget that Bhagavad-gita was explained to Arjuna, a grhastha (family man), and spoken by the Lord in His role as a grhastha. So Bhagavad-gita, although containing the high philosophy of the Vedic wisdom, is for the beginners in the transcendental science, and Srimad-Bhagavatam is for graduates and postgraduates in the transcendental science. Therefore literatures like Mahabharata, the, puranas and similar other literatures which are full of the pastimes of the Lord, are all transcendental literatures, and they should be discussed with full confidence in the society of great devotees.
The difficulty is that such literatures, when discussed by professional men, appear to be mundane literature like histories or epics because there are so many historical facts and figures. It is said here, therefore, that such literatures should be discussed in the assembly of devotees. Unless they are discussed by devotees, such literatures cannot be relished by the higher class of men. So the conclusion is that the Lord is not impersonal in the ultimate issue. He is the Supreme Person, and He has His different activities. He is the leader of all living entities, and He descends at His will and by His personal energy to reclaim the fallen souls. Thus He plays exactly like the social, political or religious leaders. Because such roles ultimately culminate in the discussion of topics of the Lord, all such preliminary topics are also transcendental. That is the way of spiritualizing the civic activities of human society. Men have inclinations for studying history and many other mundane literatures—stories, fiction, dramas, magazines, newspapers, etc.—so let them be dovetailed with the transcendental service of the Lord, and all of them will turn to the topics relished by all devotees. The propaganda that the Lord is impersonal, that He has no activity and that He is a dumb stone without any name and form has encouraged people to become godless, faithless demons, and the more they deviate from the transcendental activities of the Lord, the more they become accustomed to mundane activities that only clear their path to hell instead of return them home, back to Godhead.* Srimad-Bhagavatam begins from the history of the Pandavas (with necessary politics and social activities), and yet Srimad-Bhagavatam is said to be the Paramahamsa-samhita, or the Vedic literature meant for the topmost transcendentalist, and it describes param jnanam, the highest transcendental knowledge. pure devotees of the Lord are all paramahamsas, and they are like the swans, who know the art of sucking milk out of a mixture of milk and water.
Prabhupada: Yes. In our childhood, we saw every village, every town, the transcendental knowledge. Any common man could speak about Ramayana, Mahabharata, Lord Krsna. And system was—still there are, but practically closed now—that in the evening, in the village, everyone should assemble in a place to hear messages from Mahabharata, Ramayana, especially, because these two books can be understood by common man. Not... Vedanta philosophy was discussed. So my maternal uncles was in the suburb of Calcutta, about ten miles from our house. So sometimes when we used to go there, so in the evening after taking their meals, by eight o'clock, they would go to a place, assemble, and hear about Ramayana, Mahabharata, Bhagavata. And they should discuss while coming home, and they should go, they would go to bed thinking that memory. So they'll sleep also Ramayana and Mahabharata. Yes, and dream also Ramayana and Mahabharata. You see? This was the system. Sada tad-bhava-bhavitah [Bg. 8.6].
If you think of Krsna twenty-four hours, then you'll become fully Krsna conscious, and your life is successful. Don't allow anything. This requires little practice, abhyasa-yoga-yuktena cetasa nanya-gamina [Bg. 8.8]. I should not allow my mind to go, to think of any other subject than Krsna. Now we have got so many books. So whenever you find time... You must find time. There is so much time. So read all these books or chant. But when you are hungry, you take prasadam. When you are sleepy, take a snap. Not very much, just to refresh. And go on, either chanting the beads or reading the books or talking about Krsna. In this way, always remain in Krsna consciousness. Smartavyah satatam visnuh. Krsna consciousness means to remember Visnu always, twenty-four hours. Some way or other. Type for Krsna, write for Krsna, go outside for Krsna, sankirtana party, sell book for Krsna, bring money for Krsna, spend for Krsna. Krsna. That's all. Everything Krsna.
This is Krsna consciousness. Satatam kirtayanto mam yatantas ca drdha-vratah [Bg. 9.14]. In the Bhagavad-gita you'll find. Tusyanti ca ramanti ca. We require some satisfaction and some enjoyment, because that is our nature. Anandamayo 'bhyasat (Vedanta-sutra 1.1.12). Spirit soul. God is also blissful, and we part and parcel of God, we are also blissful. We want simply ananda, pleasure. That is our nature. But that ananda, pleasure, you cannot enjoy independently. That is not possible. You must enjoy with Krsna. That is called rasa-lila. Krsna and the gopis, they assemble together. Similarly, we are part and parcel ... Just like part and parcel of big machine. They are assembled, then it works. If the part and parcel are scattered, oh, then it has no meaning. It is simply scrap of iron, that's all. But when they are assembled together, that is meaning. Similarly, we are all part and parcel of Krsna. So we must assemble together. Central Krsna. Central Krsna. So this Krsna consciousness movement is...
Just like in this house, we are living. And (in) the next house, they are also living. So what is the difference? The difference is here, Krsna is center. That's all. Therefore it is temple. And the next door, a house. That is the difference between house, ordinary house, and temple. There is no difference. It is also made of bricks and stones and wood, that is also made of bricks and stones. They are also live, they also cook, they also eat. Everything is the same, practical. But the difference is there is no Krsna, here is Krsna. That is the difference. That is Krsna consciousness. So when I walk on the street and go anywhere, I simply think how these nice bungalows, house, but still, they're not satisfied. It is "For Sale." Why? There is no Krsna. Apranasyeva dehasya mandanam loka-ranjanam. Just like a body, beautiful body, lying down on the street, dead. Nobody cares. Because the life is not there. The spirit soul is not there. Nobody cares. Similarly, bhagavad-bhakti-hinasya jatih sastram japas tapah.
Big nation. You Americans, you are big nation. But bhagavad-bhakti ... There is no Krsna consciousness. Jati, big nation. Jati means big nation. Bhagavad-bhakti-hinasya jatih japah, their activities, tapah, tapasya... They are trying to invent so many nice things, scientifically, mechanically. Or invented machine. Everything. Jatih sastram japas tapah. Activities, very methodical. On the road there is light arrangement. Everything is all right. But if it is less Krsna consciousness, then it is... What is that? Apranasyeva dehasya mandanam loka-ranjanam. Just like a dead body, if you decorate. A body, dead body, and you apply pomade and nice dress and scent. What is the meaning? Loka-ranjanam. Loka-ranjanam means you may please some of the people, "Oh, how you are decorating a dead body." But it has no meaning. It is useless waste of time. Similarly very nice arrangement, big nation, politics, everything, minus Krsna consciousness is like that.
Apranasyeva dehasya mandanam loka-ranjanam. Therefore your young men, young girls, they have become frustrated, in spite of all this arrangement, nice arrangement. There is no comparison of your country's arrangement. I am traveling all over the world. Such nice roads, such every... Everything nice. But why they are becoming frustrated and confused? Due to this apranasya. There is no life. So life is Krsna consciousness. So if you actually feel for your country, for your community, for your people, just spread this Krsna consciousness. They're dying. You spread this Krsna consciousness. They'll come again to life, and everything will be actually beautiful. That is my request. I came to your country with this mission, that "The American people, they are feeling frustration. If they take to Krsna consciousness, they'll be happy, and others will be follow their example." So now, some of you, my advanced students, you have understood the philosophy. Some of you have taken sannyasa.
So go town to town, village to village. Preach this Krsna consciousness. Bring them to life so this frustration will be stopped. The leaders of the society, the politicians, they should take care where they are going. So it is said, katha hari-kathodarkah satam syuh sadasi dhruvam. Therefore if we discuss this hari-katha... We are discussing Srimad-Bhagavatam, hari-katha. So katha, hari-katha, udarkah satam syuh sadasi dhruvam. If it is discussed among devotees, then one can understand. This book, Srimad-Bhagavatam, has value amongst the devotees. And to others, they may purchase. They see that "What is this? Sanskrit verse, something written. Scrap of paper." You see. Just like this newspaper, for us, is scrap of paper. We don't care for it. But they keep it very carefully on their chest, "Oh, it is so nice." Newspaper in the Western countries is so popular.
One gentleman told me a story that one Christian priest went to preach Christian religion in Sheffield. Sheffield, where is it? In England? So the workers, laborers, he was preaching amongst them that "Lord Jesus Christ will save you. If you don't take shelter of Lord Jesus Christ, then you'll go to hell." So first of all he, "Who is Jesus Christ? What is his number?" That means he, they thought, "Jesus Christ must be one of the workers, and every worker has a number, so what is his number?" So "No, Jesus Christ, he's son of God. So he has no number. He's not worker." Then "What is hell?" Then described, "Hell is very damp, very dark," and so on, so on. So they were silent. Because they are working in the mines. It is always dark and damp. (laughter) (Prabhupada laughs) So what is the difference between hell and this, what is called, mine? They were silent. But when the priest said, "There is no newspaper," "Oh, horrible!" (laughter) There is no newspaper. Therefore, in your country, so many big, big, I mean to say, bunch of newspapers, they are distributed. So if for Los Angeles City, which is nothing but a point in this world...
There are so many cities, but there are so many newspapers. Not only one edition; two, three editions. If they can give so many news from this one point, now, how much news we have got? That is Srimad-Bhagavatam, from spiritual world. But there is no customer. That is the difficulty. Otherwise, so valuable instruction, so much information, all fact, dhruvam. Dhruvam means fact, not fictitious. So there would have been many, many customers. And because there is no Krsna consciousness, there is no culture, these literatures, they are not appreciated. So what is next? Another verse.
Pradyumna: (leads chanting)
Prabhupada: (about chanting) Very good. Nice.
So Pariksit Maharaja's, these are the qualifications. Sa vai bhagavato raja, not ordinary raja. Raja means king. Bhagavatah. Bhagavata means great devotee. First-class devotee, bhagavata. Pandaveya. How he became bhagavata? Because son and grandson, all in the dynasty of the Pandavas. Pariksit Maharaja was the grandson of Arjuna. So Arjuna was Krsna's friend, he was bhagavata. So unfortunately, Arjuna's son died in the Battle of Kuruksetra. He was also bhagavata. He was Subhadra's son. Arjuna... Krsna's sister Subhadra, who is sitting here with Jagannatha. So Subhadra's son was Abhimanyu, but he died in the battlefield of Kuruksetra. Sixteen years old. But fortunately, his wife Uttara was pregnant. So Pariksit Maharaja was within the womb of Uttara, so he was saved. All others died. Pandaveyah, coming in the dynasty of the Pandavas.
Therefore bhagavatah. Maha-rathah. At the same time, he could fight thousands of warriors, maha-ratha. A ksatriya who alone can fight with another thousand ksatriyas, he's called maha-ratha. So it does not mean to become bhagavata means, to become devotee, one has to stop all other activities. No. Here it is called, maha-ratha. Maha-ratha means a great commander. So a great commander can also become bhagavata, a great merchant can also become bhagavata, and a great brahmana, learned scholar, he can also become bhagavata. There is no restriction. Not that simply one who is Vedantist, who is a very learned scholar, he can become bhagavata. No. The social system was so nice that everyone could become bhagavata. The brahmana could become bhagavata, a ksatriya could become bhagavata, a vaisya could become bhagavata, or a sudra could also become bhagavata. Striyah sudras tatha vaisyah. Krsna says personally, "Never mind whether he's woman or a sudra or a vaisya, te 'pi yanti param gatim, "all of them can go back to home, back to Godhead."
How? Mam hi partha vyapasritya ye 'pi syuh papa-yonayah [Bg. 9.32]. "Simply he has to take shelter of Me seriously. That's all. Never mind what he is." Te 'pi yanti param gatim. So this Pariksit Maharaja, in his childhood he was bala-kridanakaih kridan. He was playing with Radha-Krsna. That is the advantage of getting birth in a Vaisnava family. Just like some of our children, they are playing with Jagannatha, they are playing with Radha-Krsna. In India that Sarasvati, Syamasundara's daughter, she offers arati and brings the arati for me. I take. Yes. So learning. Just as child, mother is offering obeisances, and the child is doing. We used to do that. We got this opportunity of good father and mother. We were trained up. Similarly, you can also train up your children. Then your becoming father and mother is perfect. Otherwise, the dogs and cats and hogs, they also beget children. They're more expert. A hog can beget children twice in a year, and each time, more than one dozen.
So you cannot compete with that. It is not possible. Sometimes you beget two children twice, but that is not competition. The competition is that you make your children God conscious. Give them. They're playing with Krsna. At our New Vrindaban, Dvarakadhisa, he was given by his father toys. I was present. And he did not touch the toys. He said, "It is maya." (laughter.) Yes. "It is maya." So everything should be taught from childhood. That is Prahlada Maharaja's instruction. Kaumara acaret prajno dharman bhagavatan iha [SB 7.6.1]. So in the, from the very beginning there is no teaching, there is no God consciousness; then what will be the result? You may send in a very decorated university, but the result will be hippies. That's all. You cannot expect anything more. You cannot expect. So teach them from the very beginning how to become Krsna conscious. Then you'll find nice population, beautiful population, peaceful atmosphere, social condition very nice, systematic, everyone is happy.
And with, in happiness, they're all chanting, Krsna conscious. Krsna, Hare Krsna, every house there is dingling of bells, "Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna." (laughter) Make Vaikuntha. That is my request. Teach from the very beginning of life. Just like, bala-krida. Bala-kridanakaih kridan. By playing, he's becoming Krsna conscious. So in our Dallas you go. Make all these, save all these children, those who have come to your shelter. It is the duty of the father and mother.
It is the duty of guardian to save the dependents from the impending danger of death, repeated birth and death. So if you cannot save these children, then it is useless. Save them. So we have got our center in Dallas. All children should go, and the advanced girls, they should go there and take care. Just produce a new generation, just like Pariksit Maharaja. Produce a new generation. Bala-kridanakaih, from the very childhood, thinking of Krsna, playing of Krsna, eating of Krsna, Krsna, Krsna... Then he cannot become otherwise. Therefore Prahlada Maharaja, he was child, five-years-old child, he was teaching his class fellows. So they refused that "Prahlada, why you are bothering with this? When we shall get old, we shall think of this Krsna." "No," he insisted. "No. Kaumara acaret prajno dharman bhagavatan iha, durlabham manusam janma... [SB 7.6.1]. You cannot get again such opportunity. So you immediately begin. Immediately you try to become Krsna conscious." All right, kirtana. (devotees offer obeisances) (end)

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