Haṁsadūta: The following lecture was recorded on the morning of the 23rd, 1970, in Surat, India. [break]
Prabhupāda: ...means Vedic injunction, and Vedic injunction means directly the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This is the sum and substance. Dharma means approved by the Vedas. You cannot manufacture dharma, "this dharma," "that dharma." No. It must be approved by the Vedic injunction.
And next? How this material world is created by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Every religion accepts this: God created this material world.
yena svadhāmny amī bhāvā
The difference between material world and spiritual world is that here in this material world these three qualities are acting. Therefore we find so many different varieties of men. There are three qualities: the quality of goodness, the quality of passion and the quality of ignorance—sattva, rajas, tamas. Now, these qualities, again mixed up, they create several varieties of... Just like three multiplied by three becomes nine. Nine multiplied by nine becomes eighty-one. Eighty-one multiplied by eighty-one, it becomes...
So many varieties. Expert color men, they take three colors—that blue, red and yellow—and mixes the color, and varieties of color is manufactured. Similarly, these three guṇas, originally they are coming from the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
It is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā that the three qualities are also emanated, or generated, from the Supreme Personality of Godhead. And the three qualities are represented by Brahmā, Viṣṇu, Maheśvara. The quality of goodness is represented by Viṣṇu, the quality of passion is represented by Brahmā, and the quality of darkness is represented by Lord Śiva. By the quality of goodness this whole material world is maintained, and by the quality of passion the whole material world is created, and by the quality of ignorance the whole material world is again annihilated. Bhūtvā bhūtvā pralīyate [Bg. 8.19].
The nature of this material world is that it becomes manifest at a certain time and again it disappears. That is the difference between material world and spiritual world. Spiritual world is eternal. There is no question of occasional appearance and occasional disappearance. Paras tasmāt tu bhāvo 'nyaḥ [Bg. 8.20]. In the Bhagavad-gītā you will find the description that "There is another nature, bhāva." Bhāva means... Svabhāva, bhāva, these are the Sanskrit terms of the nature. So that nature is vyaktāvyakta. This nature is vyakta and avyakta, manifest and nonmanifest.
So..., and above this, beyond this manifested and nonmanifest material nature, there is another, spiritual nature, which is sanātana. Sanātana means eternal. And it is also stated, yasmin sarveṣu api naśyatsu na vinaśyate: "When everything is annihilated, that sanātana nature is not annihilated. That sanātana nature remains as it is." That is the spiritual nature and material nature.
So these three qualities... As from Viṣṇu, Brahmā is generated, and from Brahmā, Lord Śiva is generated, so original cause is Viṣṇu. And Viṣṇu's cause is Kṛṣṇa. Yasyaika-niśvasita-kāla. In the Brahma-saṁhitā it is said,
jīvanti loma-vilajā jagad-aṇḍa-nāthāḥ
viṣṇur mahān sa iha yasya kalā-viśeṣo
govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi
The Kāraṇārṇavaśāyī Viṣṇu, the Viṣṇu lying in the Causal Ocean of material creation, so He is in the nature of sleeping, ananta. And He is breathing. So yasyaika-niśvasita-kālam athāvalambya. This breathing, exhaling and inhaling, that is going on. So that exhaling and inhaling is the duration of this material existence. When Viṣṇu exhales, whole creation takes place. And when He inhales, the whole creation again is... Prakṛtiṁ yānti māmikām [Bg. 9.7]. In the Bhagavad-gītā it is said, "Then it again enters into the nature of the Supreme."
So with the exhaling of breathing, innumerable universes are being generated. Yasyaika-niśvasita-kālam atha. Niśvasita-kāla, that period. Now, imagine what is that period. Jīvanti loma-vilajā jagad-aṇḍa-nāthāḥ. And also from the holes of the body, many universes are coming out. Such Viṣṇu, the Brahma-saṁhitā says, yasya iha kalā-viśeṣaḥ, such Viṣṇu, Lord Viṣṇu, Kāraṇodakaśāyī Viṣṇu, He is also a plenary portion of Govinda. Just imagine what is Govinda. Yasyaika-niśvasita-kālam athāvalambya jīvanti loma-vilajā [Bs. 5.48].
That is also confirmed by Govinda, Kṛṣṇa, in the Bhagavad-gītā: ekāṁśena sthito jagat [Bg. 10.42]. When Arjuna inquired from Kṛṣṇa, "What is Your opulence?" then He is describing the opulence, and in that opulence He concludes that "There is no necessity of describing My opulence very much. You simply understand that the whole material creation is existing in one fourth of My energy." So that is understanding of Bhagavad-gītā. We have to understand what is Kṛṣṇa.
So here it is also said that yena svadhāmni bhāvāḥ. The svadhāmni bhāvāḥ. This goodness, this passion, this mode, they are also represented in the spiritual world. They are also represented in the spiritual world, svadhāmni bhāvāḥ, but a perverted reflection is represented here only. Everything is there. Otherwise, there cannot be any creation.
The Vedānta says, janmādy asya yataḥ [SB 1.1.1]. Everything, whatever we see, it has got a source of generation, and that is Brahman, Absolute Truth. So these guṇas, these material guṇas, they are also generated from the Absolute Truth. That is explained in Bhagavad-gītā also. But here everything is perverted reflection. Therefore we see in a different way it is represented.
Guṇa-nāma-kriyā-rūpair vibhāvyante yathā-tatham. And those qualities, guṇa-nāma, guṇa-nāma-kriyā-rūpaiḥ, when the qualities begin to act, they are represented in different varieties, these qualities. These qualities of goodness, passion and ignorance, when they are interacted, they represent in different varieties of representation. Just like when there is quality of goodness, then it is brāhmaṇism. That is the representation of the quality of goodness.
And when the quality of passion is represented, that is the quality of kṣatriya. And when the quality of ignorance is represented, that is the presentation of the śūdras. And mixed-up quality of ignorance and passion, that is vaiśya. Cātur-varṇyaṁ mayā sṛṣṭaṁ guṇa-karma-vibhāgaśaḥ [Bg. 4.13]. That is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā, that "These four qualitative representation, brāhmaṇas, kṣatriya..."
So when it is creation by the Supreme Lord, it is not that the brāhmaṇas are to be found only in India. That is another wrong conclusion. Because brāhmaṇas means representation of the quality of goodness. Anywhere you find the quality of goodness, that is brāhmaṇism. So these American, European boys, when they have developed their quality of goodness, Kṛṣṇa consciousness, they are brāhmaṇas. If they are considered as mlecchas and yavanas, that is nārakīya-buddhi, hellish consideration.
Vaiṣṇave jāti-buddhiḥ: if anyone considers a Vaiṣṇava, a devotee of the Lord, in the categorical estimation of birth, then that is hellish consideration. Vaiṣṇave jāti-buddhiḥ. Arcye viṣṇau śilā-dhīr guruṣu nara-matiḥ [Padma Purāṇa]. Just like here we are worshiping Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa Deity. You have all come here early in the morning, and... So does it mean that you are all fools? You have come to see a brass idol is being worshiped here? So anyone who considers the Deity as arcye śilā-dhīḥ, made of stone, made of brass, made of wood, that is nārakī-buddhiḥ. Arcye śilā-dhīḥ. Śilā. Śilā means stone.
So those who are unaware of the Vedic knowledge, they consider that this is idol worship. It is not idol worship. It is directly worshiping the Supreme Lord. The Supreme Lord has, by His mercy, descended to accept your service. If you want to dress the Supreme Lord, if you take His virāḍ-rūpa, universal form, where is your cloth and how you can dress? Eh? You haven't got so much cloth. In spite of having so many mills, you cannot dress the virāṭ form. Therefore Kṛṣṇa, by His omnipotency, He becomes a smaller, just to be handled by you. That is His mercy. Not that...
Just like Kṛṣṇa became a small child of Yaśodā. That does not mean Kṛṣṇa has diminished in His power. He immediately showed. When there was attempt to kill Him by the Pūtanā, immediately He showed His godly power. So we have to study like that, that God in any circumstances is God. God is never made. Any circumstances, God is God. God... Not that by meditation, pressing your nose, you become God. No. That is not God. God is God.
So all the... Therefore Rūpa Gosvāmī says,
aikāntikī harer bhaktir
"Their conception of God or devotional service to God without reference to the Vedas, śruti and smṛti, and the purāṇas," śruti-smṛti-purāṇa, pañcarātra-vidhi, "the Nārada Pañcarātra, these regulative principles, without reference to these regulative principles, if one, anyone, claims that he has become a devotee of the Lord, it is simply disturbance." It is simply disturbance. One cannot become a bona fide devotee without being trained up under the regulative principles of śruti-smṛti-purāṇādi-pañcarātra-vidhi.
Rūpa Gosvāmī directly says in his Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu that "Without reference"—that means without being trained up by a bona fide spiritual master—"if one poses that he has become a devotee, he simply creates disturbance. That's all." That is being done. That is being done. We have got so many so-called devotees, but without any reference to the authoritative scripture; therefore we are creating disturbance. Here it is said that guṇa-nāma..., guṇa-nāma-kriyā-rūpaiḥ. Guṇa-nāma-kriyā-rūpair vibhāvyante yathā-tatham.
Then again he says,
sūryo 'gniḥ khaṁ marud devaḥ
somaḥ sandhyāhanī diśaḥ
kaṁ kuḥ svayaṁ dharma iti
hy ete daihyasya sākṣiṇaḥ
Now we are acting under the influence of different guṇas. Therefore we find the brahminical class of men, the kṣatriya class of men, the vaiśya class of men, the śūdra class of men. That is natural. Natural. A śūdra class of man, his behavior, and a brāhmaṇa class of man, his behavior, is different. And Nārada Muni says, and Bhāgavata also says, that we have to see the symptoms how one is acting.
Yasya yal lakṣaṇaṁ proktaṁ puṁso varṇābhivyañjakam [SB 7.11.35]. Varṇa, this catur-varṇa—brāhmaṇa, kṣatriya, vaiśya, śūdra—there are symptoms. By symptoms... Just like a physician diagnoses the disease by the symptoms of the disease, similarly, we have to accept one as brāhmaṇa by the symptoms of his behavior, not by birth. It is not said in the Bhagavad-gītā or any śāstra.
That is going on in India at the present moment. By birthright one is claiming, "I am brāhmaṇa," "I am kṣatriya." That is the cause of falldown of India's civilization. Without any quality they are claiming, and it is passing on. Here, in every śāstra—the Nārada Pañcarātra, Bhāgavata, Bhagavad-gītā, everywhere—it is said, yasya yal lakṣaṇaṁ proktam. Yasya: the varṇasya, of the varṇa, of the class, there are symptoms.
Just like in Bhagavad-gītā you will find, satyaṁ śamaḥ śaucam ārjavaṁ titikṣā, jñānaṁ vijñānam āstikyaṁ brahma-karma svabhāva-jam [Bg. 18.42]. By nature a brāhmaṇa will be truthful. Satyaṁ śamaḥ. He will be controlling of the senses, controlling the mind, very cleansed, śaucam. Satyaṁ śaucaṁ śamaḥ damaḥ titikṣā, tolerant. Even in the severest type of danger, he is never disturbed. Tolerant. Satyaṁ śamaḥ damaḥ śaucam ārjavam, and simplicity; jñānam, full of knowledge; and vijñānam, practical application in life; āstikyam, firm faith in the scripture and Kṛṣṇa—these are the qualification of brāhmaṇa.
Similarly, the kṣatriyas' qualification—they want to rule over. A kṣatriya never goes away from fighting. He is never afraid of fighting. He never, I mean to say, he is afraid of the challenge of the other party. Just like Jarāsandha. Jarāsandha was a kṣatriya, and he was... At the same time, a kṣatriya's quality is charitable. Formerly the kings, they would distribute money like anything. They would collect money by taxing, but at the same time, they would distribute.
The example is given in the case of Mahārāja Daśaratha, that he was exacting taxes just like the sunshine exacts water from the sea, and it turns into cloud and it distributes all over the planet. Similarly, the kṣatriya's duty is to collect... Government's duty is to collect tax, heavily tax. But the money should be distributed to all the citizens by different way.
That is the way, dāna-bhāva-jam. Not that I collect tax and I engage it in my sense gratification; I employ three hundred prostitutes for dancing before me. These are... This is the cause of falling down of monarchy system. Therefore people are in democracy. And the democracy is also failure. Every democratic member has become another debauchee. So therefore it is coming down to Communism, dictatorship. You see? So in this way things are changing. But actually, if they follow the symptoms of a kṣatriya, then it is good for the kṣatriya king and the citizens.
But they are not following. Therefore śāstra says that the brāhmaṇa, kṣatriya, vaiśya, śūdra... If one is... Kṛṣi-vāṇijyam, go-rakṣya. That is the symptom of the vaiśya. As the kṣatriyas are entrusted to protect the human beings, the vaiśya is expected to protect the cows. Unfortunately, they are not doing that. There is no kṣatriya; there is no brāhmaṇa; there is no vaiśya. Therefore the śāstra says, kalau śūdra-sambhavaḥ [Skanda Purāṇa]: "In the Kali-yuga there is only śūdras"; there is no more brāhmaṇa. Of course, there is; not "no more," but very minor quantity, very...
Manuṣyāṇāṁ sahasreṣu [Bg. 7.3]. Brāhmaṇa means one who is aware of the Supreme Absolute Truth. And one who is above brāhmaṇa, when the Absolute Truth is worshiped, that is Vaiṣṇava. A brāhmaṇa may be qualified in so many ways, but if he is not a Vaiṣṇava, then he cannot be a spiritual master. That is also stated in the śāstra: ṣaṭ-karma-nipuṇo vipraḥ. A brāhmaṇa is very qualified, ṣaṭ-karma. Ṣaṭ-karma, six kinds of activities. The six kinds of activities are paṭhana-pāṭhana yajana-yājana dāna-pratigraha.
[poor audio] Paṭhana means he must be very much serious in understanding the Vedic literatures. That is brāhmaṇa's qualification [end poor audio],
...very much studious, high-class scholar in Vedic literature, paṭhana. And pāṭhana, he must teach the Vedic knowledge.
Formerly, therefore, you know, everyone, that in every village the brāhmaṇa had a catuṣpāṭhī. The brāhmaṇa had no other business. He would sit down in his cottage, and he would teach Vedic literature. Even in Muhammadan, the, what is called, maulanas, they also teach Koran. That is brahminical quality, paṭhana-pāṭhana. Not that "I am very much learned; I will not distribute it. I shall..."
That is called jñāna-khala, envious, even he has knowledge. The spiritual knowledge must be distributed. That is the system of our Vaiṣṇava philosophy. Śravaṇaṁ kīrtanam [SB 7.5.23]. The śravaṇam is paṭhana, to learn from the spiritual master. That is called śravaṇam. And then kīrtanam, then distribute the knowledge. Whatever you have learned from your spiritual master, you must distribute. Śravaṇaṁ kīrtanam.
So paṭhana-pāṭhana yajana-yājana. Yajana means worshiping the Lord, the Deity. And yājana, and inducing others to engage in that worshiping. This is going on. You kindly mark in this Society, we are allowing the students..., giving them volumes of books for reading, paṭhana. Then pāṭhana, then teach others. And they are worshiping the Lord, and they are inviting others to come here and learn how to worship Lord.
Paṭhana-pāṭhana yajana-yājana dāna-pratigraha [SB 5.17.11 puport]. They are exacting money: "Give us some money. Become our member." But what is that membership fee? That is not being utilized for their sense gratification. For dāna, for distributing knowledge. "You give us some money as membership fee. We give you whatever we have got. We have got this book. Take it." Dāna-pratigraha.
So this is brahminical business. Paṭhana-pāṭhana yajana-yājana dāna-pratigraha. Again...
[aside:] You can...
Again, in the śāstra it is said that ṣaṭ-karma-nipuṇo vipro mantra-tantra-viśāradaḥ [Padma Purāṇa]: "If a brāhmaṇa has become very much expert in this six kinds of business," and mantra-tantra-viśāradaḥ, "and he knows also all the mantras and tantras, but he is impersonalist or voidist, then he cannot become guru." Avaiṣṇavo gurur na syāt [Padma Purāṇa].
In spite of having all these qualities, if he is impersonalist and voidist, he cannot become spiritual master. Avaiṣṇavo gurur..., syād vaiṣṇavaḥ śvapaco guruḥ: "On the other hand, if a person is Vaiṣṇava, devotee of the Lord, even if he is born in the family of caṇḍāla, less than the śūdra, he can become the spiritual master." These are the injunctions of the śāstra.
So guṇa-nāma-kriyā-rūpair vibhāvyante yathā-tatham [SB 6.1.41]. Sūryaḥ agniḥ. Now, the creation, the God's creation, is going on, and we are acting under the influence of the material qualities. As such, when we act in tamo-guṇa, we become entangled with so many sinful activities. Tamo-guṇa. Tamo-guṇa means ignorance. We have to act, because in the material world sometimes we are under the influence of goodness, sometimes we are under the influence of passion, sometimes we are under the influence of ignorance.
So when we are in ignorance... Everyone commits sin or criminal activities simply by ignorance. Ignorance. Just like by ignorance a child touches a fire. The fire will not excuse. Because it is a child, he does not know, therefore the fire excuses? It does not burn his hand? No. Even it is child, the fire must act. It burns. Similarly, ignorance is no excuse of law. If you commit some sin and go to the law court, and if you plead, "Sir, I did not know this law," that is no excuse. You have committed this criminal activity; even though you did not know the law, that does not mean you will be excused.
Therefore all sinful activities are done in ignorance or in mixed-up passion and ignorance. Therefore one has to raise himself to the quality of goodness. He must be good, very good man. And if you want to become very good man, then you have to follow these regulative principles: no illicit sex life, no meat-eating, no intoxication, no gambling. These are the four pillars of sinful life. If you indulge in these four principles of sinful life, you cannot become a good man.
And if there is want of good men, how you can expect peace and prosperity in the world? If everyone is full of rascaldom, how you can expect? You are... Why you are accusing the government? The government is your representative. You are rascals, fools, you select some rascal and fool, how you can expect good government? Democracy. You become good man. You will see government is good.
So therefore the mass education should be how to become good man. And how one can become good man? That is also stated in the śāstras: yasyāsti bhaktir bhagavaty akiñcanā sarvair guṇais tatra samāsate surāḥ [SB 5.18.12]. If one is simply made a devotee and he has got unflinching faith in God, Kṛṣṇa, then all the good qualities automatically develop.
So therefore this is the duty. This is duty of this Society, to make everyone a devotee, a sincere, a pure devotee of Kṛṣṇa. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. If you make the people all good, you will have good society, you will have good government. You will have everything good. And if you create rascals and fools, how you can expect good government? That is not possible. Therefore all serious, thoughtful men should take it that Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is very, very essential in this world.
Thank you very much. Hare Kṛṣṇa. [devotees offer obeisances] [break]
Devotee (1): A devotee becomes more surrendered because the influence of the modes, the three modes, becomes diminished, or is the influence just changed from ignorance and passion to goodness?
Prabhupāda: The surrender means surrender to whom?
Devotee (1): To Kṛṣṇa and to Your Divine Grace.
Prabhupāda: So that surrender means to accept his orders. The spiritual master trains the disciple in the way of goodness quality. So if you do not abide the orders of spiritual master, what is the use of your surrender? Surrender means ānukūlyasya saṅkalpaḥ prātikūlyasya varjanam [Hari-bhakti-vilāsa 11.676]. Anukūla, favorable things, should be accepted. And you do not know.
Therefore spiritual master will direct you, "This is favorable. This is unfavorable. Don't smoke—this is unfavorable." But if you don't accept the instruction, what is the meaning of surrender? Simply by offering obeisances, falling flat for the time being, that is not surrender.
Devotee (2): Daṇḍavat.
Prabhupāda: Daṇḍavat class. Surrender means you must abide strictly the orders, sad-dharma-pṛcchā, ādau gurvāśrayam. To accept a guru means... Śiṣya means one must agree to be governed by the spiritual master. That is called śiṣya. Śiṣya... Śās-dhātu. From śās-dhātu all these terms—śāstra, śastra, śiṣya, śāsana—these are words derived from the root śās-dhātu.
Śās-dhātu means śāsana, governing. The governing is done by military, governing is done by law books, governing is done by personal instruction, so many things. So śiṣya means who voluntarily accepts to be guided or being governed by the representative of God. That is śiṣya. Yes.
Devotee (3): In regard to worshiping arcā-vigraha form, you have explained that if one receives a mantra from a spiritual master who is not bona fide, that mantra has no effect. So I would like to ask if one is worshiping a Deity and the instruction of his spiritual master is not bona fide, so that Deity cannot be considered the Supreme Lord?
Prabhupāda: Well, first of all, thing is if the spiritual master is not bona fide, how his mantra can be bona fide? Your statement is contradictory. If you say the spiritual master is not bona fide, then how his mantra becomes bona fide? If he is bona fide, then his mantra is bona fide.
Devotee (3): Then why is he giving instruction to worship the Deity? If the spiritual master is not bona fide, then is the Deity also not bona fide?
Prabhupāda: I do not follow. What does he say?
Tamāla Kṛṣṇa: His idea is that if one receives a mantra from a spiritual master, if the spiritual master is not bona fide...
Prabhupāda: Then there is no question of mantra, there is no question of worshiping Deity. These are all bogus things. If you are not... Just like here is a young medical man. If he has not received instruction from a bona fide medical college, so what is the value of his medical, being... That is... What is called? What is the technical name?
Devotee (4): Quack.
Prabhupāda: Quack! [laughter]
Prabhupāda: A quack is not a medical man, however he may show all red bottles, white bottles. There is a Bengali proverb, naj jal yac curi tini ei daktar.[?] One stethoscope, naj[?], and some bottles, jala, and talking all nonsense, he becomes a doctor. That means the quack doctor, not a... Qualified doctor, he knows what is what. So naj jal yac curi tini ei daktar[?]. In Bengali they say. And mostly in villages they go on like that. But of course, they have got some experience.
I know in Allahabad there was a doctor, Kabir, a Dr. Kabir. And because in my previous household life I was a chemist and druggist, I was supplying medicine, so he was my customer. So he had that... This Dr. Kabir was a compounder. Later on he practiced. So he had very, very big prac... He was my biggest customer. He was purchasing medicine like anything. But he had experience. He learned from an experienced doctor. He cannot be called a bogus, because whatever he learned, he was...
But generally, one who is not a bona fide doctor, he is called a quack. So anything, experience required; not that you have to go to the medical college. If you are trained under a bona fide doctor, then also you can get the quality of a doctor. Similarly, the whole thing is tad-vijñānārthaṁ sa gurum evābhigacchet [MU 21.2.12]. One should go to the bona fide spiritual master to learn this transcendental science.
Guest: There is a..., just a quotation from Bengali poet that to be devotee of Lord Kṛṣṇa, one should be fully trained without any [indistinct]. And it is often said that in this Kali-yuga, even if you do not know, or if you are not studied any books, but if you know only bhakti, then you can be...
Prabhupāda: What is that? If you know bhakti... That's a very big task. If you know actually bhakti, then it is all good. But do you know what is bhakti? First thing is that.
Guest: Means worshiping God. By understanding this mantra, Hare Kṛṣṇa, if you do not know any scriptures, you do not know śrutis, mantras, anything, then has any effect at all?
Prabhupāda: Oh, yes, because this is a special advantage for the people in this age, that if he chants this Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra without any offense, purely, then... There are three stages of chanting this Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra. In the beginning there are full of offenses. Then it is almost offenseless. And then, when it is pure, that is perfectional stage.
So by chanting, if you practice chanting, even though in the beginning it is full of offenses, but if you continue chanting... Therefore we say that "You must chant so many times." So even there are offenses, by chanting, chanting, chanting, chanting, he will be purified. Ceto-darpaṇa-mārjanam [Cc. Antya 20.12].
So therefore, in this age we must stick to this process of chanting. That will make us perfect. If not immediately, it will do, certainly. That is special advantage for the men of this age. Kaler doṣa-nidhe rājann asti hy eko mahān guṇaḥ. Mahān guṇaḥ. It is a great advantage. What is that? Kīrtanād eva kṛṣṇasya [SB 12.3.51]:
"Simply by chanting Lord Kṛṣṇa's name," mukta-saṅga, 'he becomes free from all contamination and he becomes eligible to be promoted to the spiritual kingdom." That is special advantage of this age. Therefore we are advising, we are preaching, that "You chant this mantra. In any condition of life, begin chanting. You will be benefited." Yes.
Devotee (5): Prabhupāda, you mentioned a person who commits sins because he is in ignorance.
Devotee (5): What if the person knows what he is doing is wrong, and he knows what the ultimate result of his doings is also wrong, but he still commits? Is that still ignorance?
Prabhupāda: Yes. That is ignorance-rooted, ignorance..., heart, rooted in the heart. That can be... Therefore Caitanya Mahāprabhu recommends ceto-darpaṇa-mārjanam [Cc. Antya 20.12]. You have to cleanse your heart. Then, when your heart is cleansed, then you will say, "No, no. No more I am going to do this. I have suffered so much. No. No." That is real knowledge.
Unless your heart is cleansed, then, even though you know that "By committing theft I will be punished," you will commit, because the heart is not clear. Even though one knows that "By doing this, I will suffer," still, he will do that. That distinction is always there. Therefore the only method is this cleansing process in this age, Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra.
Revatīnandana: In the Fourteenth Chapter in the Gītā, you describe that the mode of goodness..., people who are in the mode of goodness become conditioned by that mode, and they come back repeated births as philosophers, educators, like that.
Revatīnandana: And then in the Eighteenth Chapter there are different qualities described, and the qualities in the mode of goodness are said to be leading to self-realization. So is there a distinction between that mode of goodness described in the Eighteenth Chapter and the Fourteenth Chapter?
Prabhupāda: No. Goodness is a chance. If you acquire... Just like if you become a graduate, there is chance of becoming a lawyer. But if you do not become a lawyer, you remain only graduate. That's all. But without becoming graduate they cannot enter to be a lawyer. Similarly, goodness is the qualification of a brāhmaṇa. A brāhmaṇa has a chance.
When you are qualified, you are following the regulative principles, qualified, you have got the chance of being promoted to become a Vaiṣṇava. That is the advantage. But in this age... Again, the same thing. Even one is not a brāhmaṇa—he is in the category of caṇḍāla—still, if he chants this Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra, he becomes elevated to the position more than a brāhmaṇa. Yes.
Revatīnandana: Is that called purified goodness?
Prabhupāda: Purified... Goodness is purified, but this material world is so made that you cannot have here absolute goodness. That is not possible. There is... Sometimes it is mixed with passion, mixed with ignorance. Mixture. You see? Therefore the transcendental stage is called śuddha-sattva. Sattva-guṇa is goodness, and the platform where the other qualities cannot contaminate even the quality of goodness, that is the stage of devotion. That is confirmed in the Bhagavad-gītā:
māṁ ca 'vyabhicāreṇa
bhakti-yogena ya sevate
sa guṇān samatītyaitān...
All the guṇas... He transcends all the three guṇas. He remains in the fourth stage. Therefore Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra is so powerful. If you keep yourself always chanting, you will stay on the..., above goodness, where this passion, the mode of passion and ignorance, cannot touch you.
Guest: Is it true that all this [indistict]... [break] [end]
aikāntikī harer bhaktir
"Devotional service of the Lord that ignores the authorized Vedic literatures like the Upaniṣads, Purāṇas and Nārada-pañcarātra is simply an unnecessary disturbance in society."
2tad-vijñānārthaṁ sa gurum evābhigacchet
samit-pāṇiḥ śrotriyaṁ brahma-niṣṭham
"To understand these things properly, one must humbly approach, with firewood in hand, a spiritual master who is learned in the Vedas and firmly devoted to the Absolute Truth."
[Muṇḍaka Upaniṣad 1.2.12]