śrī-caitanya-mano-'bhīṣṭaṁ sthāpitaṁ yena bhū-tale
svayaṁ rūpaḥ kadā mahyaṁ dadāti sva-padāntikam

When will Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī Prabhupāda, who has established within this material world the mission to fulfill the desire of Lord Caitanya, give me shelter under his lotus feet?

vande 'haṁ śrī-guroḥ śrī-yuta-pada-kamalaṁ śrī-gurūn vaiṣṇavāṁś ca
śrī-rūpaṁ sāgrajātaṁ saha-gaṇa-raghunāthānvitaṁ taṁ sa-jīvam
sādvaitaṁ sāvadhūtaṁ parijana-sahitaṁ kṛṣṇa-caitanya-devaṁ
śrī-rādhā-kṛṣṇa-pādān saha-gaṇa-lalitā-śrī-viśākhānvitāṁś ca

["I offer my respectful obeisances unto the lotus feet of my spiritual master and of all the other preceptors on the path of devotional service. I offer my respectful obeisances unto all the Vaiṣṇavas and unto the six Gosvāmīs, including Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī, Śrīla Sanātana Gosvāmī, Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī, Jīva Gosvāmī and their associates. I offer my respectful obeisances unto Śrī Advaita Ācārya Prabhu, Śrī Nityānanda Prabhu, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu and all His devotees, headed by Śrīvāsa Ṭhākura. I then offer my respectful obeisances unto the lotus feet of Lord Kṛṣṇa, Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī and all the gopīs, headed by Lalitā and Viśākhā."]

he kṛṣṇa karuṇā-sindho dīna-bandho jagat-pate
gopeśa gopikā-kānta rādhā-kānta namo 'stu te

["O my dear Kṛṣṇa, ocean of mercy, You are the friend of the distressed and the source of creation. You are the master of the cowherd men and the lover of the gopīs, especially Rādhārāṇī. I offer my respectful obeisances unto You."]

tapta-kāñcana-gaurāṅgi rādhe vṛndāvaneśvari
vṛṣabhānu-sute devi praṇamāmi hari-priye

["I offer my respects to Rādhārāṇī, whose bodily complexion is like molten gold and who is the Queen of Vṛndāvana. You are the daughter of King Vṛṣabhānu, and You are very dear to Lord Kṛṣṇa."]

he kṛṣṇa karuṇā-sindho dīna-bandho jagat-pate
gopeśa gopikā-kānta rādhā-kānta namo 'stu te

["O my dear Kṛṣṇa, ocean of mercy, You are the friend of the distressed and the source of creation. You are the master of the cowherd men and the lover of the gopīs, especially Rādhārāṇī. I offer my respectful obeisances unto You."]

tapta-kāñcana-gaurāṅgi rādhe vṛndāvaneśvari
vṛṣabhānu-sute devi praṇamāmi hari-priye

["I offer my respects to Rādhārāṇī, whose bodily complexion is like molten gold and who is the Queen of Vṛndāvana. You are the daughter of King Vṛṣabhānu, and You are very dear to Lord Kṛṣṇa."]

vāñchā-kalpatarubhyaś ca kṛpā-sindhubhya eva ca
patitānāṁ pāvanebhyo vaiṣṇavebhyo namo namaḥ

["I offer my respectful obeisances unto all the Vaiṣṇava devotees of the Lord. They can fulfill the desires of everyone, just like desire trees, and they are full of compassion for the fallen souls."]

śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya prabhu nityānanda
śrī-advaita gadādhara śrīvāsādi-gaura-bhakta-vṛnda

["I offer my obeisances to Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya, Prabhu Nityānanda, Śrī Advaita, Gadādhara, Śrīvāsa and all others in the line of devotion."]

hare kṛṣṇa hare kṛṣṇa kṛṣṇa kṛṣṇa hare hare
hare rāma hare rāma rāma rāma hare hare

["My dear Lord, and the spiritual energy of the Lord, kindly engage me in Your service. I am now embarrassed with this material service. Please engage me in Your service."]

adhuneha mahā-bhāga
yathaiva narakān naraḥ
nānogra-yātanān neyāt
tan me vyākhyātum arhasi

[SB 6.1.6]

Today we shall discuss a very nice historical event, the story—history or story, whatever you call—of Ajāmila and his salvation. Before this chapter in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam there has been a very elaborate description of different kinds of hellish punishment.

So far the Śrīmad-Bhāgavata is concerned, it contains the information of all other planets within this universe. So we get information of one planet which is about 800,000's of miles away from this planet. In that planet the Yamarāja, or the personality, or demigod who, I mean to say, tries the person who are very much sinful and gives him punishment.

Just like here you have got the magistrate who tries the criminals and gives punishment according to the gravity of criminality, similarly, there is no reason to disbelieve that in this vast kingdom of God, why there shall not be a magistrate like that? If in a small state, say this California state, there are so many magistrates, so many courts in different towns, and if you calculate, in comparison to this universe, what is this California state?

You can see at night there are millions and billions of planets glittering in the sky, and this earthly planet is one of them. That's all. And in this earthly planet there are so many countries—America, Canada, United States, Mexico, India, China... There are so many countries, and there are so many cities. And each and every city, there are so many courts and magistrates. Just think that this planet is only a spot in comparison to the universal construction. So how we can think that there is no control, there is no government, everything has come out of its own course? This theory is foolish theory. There is controller. There is controller, and He is called Īśvara. Īśvara means God. There is management of God. It is very commonsense understanding.

So about that description of that hellish planet has been described in the previous chapter. Now, you should always remember that this Bhāgavatam is being spoken by Śukadeva Gosvāmī to King Parīkṣit. Mahārāja Parīkṣit was to die within seven days, and he immediately left his kingdom and family and went to the bank of the Ganges, sat down there tightly without taking even a drop of water; simply with great seriousness he heard Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. And he got salvation, within seven days.

There are nine different process of executing Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Several times I have described that nine processes. The first process is hearing. The second process is chanting. The third process is remembering, or meditating. The fourth process is serving the Lord. Śravaṇaṁ kīrtanaṁ viṣṇoḥ smaraṇaṁ pāda-sevanam [SB 7.5.23]. Pāda-sevanam means to serve the lotus feet of the Lord. Then arcanam. Arcanam means temple worship. Just like in this temple you see there is Deity, Kṛṣṇa's arca-mūrti or Deity, or idol, whatever you call, and we are offering flowers and fruits and cooked foodstuff, whatever we can get by the mercy of Kṛṣṇa. And we offer it, "Kṛṣṇa, You have kindly sent this foodstuff."

This is acknowledgment. You cannot manufacture this nice fruit. It is not in your power. You may be very much expert in conducting a big factory for manufacturing these motorcars, but it is not possible for you to manufacture these nice grapes or oranges or banana or rice. No. That is not in your power. Therefore a sane man should admit that "This is sent by God." This is common sense. What is beyond your power... If you say it is product of nature... What do you mean by "nature"? Nature means an energy which is acting under the direction of God. That is nature.

That is explained in the Bhagavad-gītā: mayādhyakṣeṇa prakṛtiḥ sūyate sa-carācaram [Bg. 9.10]. Prakṛti means nature. Don't take that the nature is producing without the active cooperation of the Supreme Lord, puruṣa. Just like when a woman has got a child, produced a child, you must know that she had connection with a man, the puruṣa. So it is common sense.

So this offering of foodstuff to the Deity, Kṛṣṇa, or God, is very nice. "My Lord, You have given me so nice foodstuff to eat; so You first of all taste, and then we shall take." It is a gratitude. You haven't got even any gratitude to express. In the Bhagavad-gītā it is said, stena eva sa ucyate [Bg. 3.12]. Anyone who does not offer foodstuff to the Personality of Godhead, he is thief. He is thief. And yajña-śiṣṭāśinaḥ santo mucyante sarva-kilbiṣaiḥ. And if you take foodstuff offered to the Deity, then you get rid of all sinful activities. Mucyante sarva-kilbiṣaiḥ and bhuñjate te tv aghaṁ pāpā ye pacanty ātma-kāraṇāt [Bg. 3.13]. Ātma-kāraṇāt means self satisfaction or sense gratification.

We are eating. Everyone is eating; we are also eating. The difference is somebody is eating for sense gratification and somebody is eating for satisfaction of Kṛṣṇa. That is the difference. So if you simply acknowledge that "My dear Lord..." Just like a son, if he acknowledges the benefits derived from the father, how much the father is satisfied, "Oh, here is a very good son." The father is supplying everything, but if the son says, "My dear father, you are so kind to me that you are supplying such nice things. I thank you," the father becomes very much pleased. Father does not want that thanks, but it is natural. Father does not care for such thanks. His duty he is supplying. But if the son feels thankful for the father's benefit, the father is especially satisfied.

Similarly, God is the father. He is supplying us. In the Vedic mantra it is said, nityo nityānāṁ cetanaś cetanānām [Kaṭha Upaniṣad 2.2.13]. He is the supreme living entity amongst all living entities. He is singular number, nitya. And nityānām, plural number—we are all plural number. We are also as living entity, as good living entity as Kṛṣṇa, or God. God is also living entity, we are also living entity. Just like father and son. The father is also living entity and the son is also living entity. There is no difference so far living conditions are there. Similarly, Kṛṣṇa and Kṛṣṇa's sons, or God or God's sons.

Now, in the Bible, Lord Jesus Christ is described as the son of God. Now, so far I have heard, that it is claimed that he is the only one son of God. Now according to Bhagavad-gītā, every living entity is son of God. Now how to adjust? If the Bible says that Lord Jesus Christ is the only one son, then how these so many innumerable sons can be adjusted? There is adjustment. There is very nice adjustment. One should know it. He is the only one son means one who can sacrifice his life for God, he is real son. And one who is simply taking from father, "O God, give us our daily bread," and He is supplying, and eating and enjoying sense enjoyment, he is not real son. The real son is he who sacrifices his life for glorifying his father.

Similarly, anyone who will sacrifice his life... Of course, it is not required that everyone shall be crucified like Lord Jesus Christ, but he should sacrifice his energy for the Supreme Lord. And that person who has devoted his energy for the satisfaction of the Supreme Lord, he is called Kṛṣṇa conscious person.

We have got a limited, measured amount of energy throughout our life. We are not going to live forever, but we have got some energy by which we can create so many things. Everyone is coming as a small child. As he grows up, by his energy he is becoming Ford, he is becoming Rockefeller, he is becoming Carnegie, or in our country just like Birla, so many things. It is simply energy. One has got sufficient energy, intelligence, he is utilizing, he is becoming Rockefeller, Ford or Birla, or something like that. Another man, he has got energy, he cannot utilize his energy; he remains a poor man, a loafer class. It is all question of energy.

So, so long we have got this energy in our control, that means so long we live, we have got a certain amount of..., that should be employed for Kṛṣṇa, for God. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Kṛṣṇa consciousness does not mean anything wonderful. It is not an ordinary... But a simple thing. Simply you have to employ your energy for Kṛṣṇa. That is expected by Kṛṣṇa. And what will be the result? The result will be, at least individually you shall be peaceful, you shall be happy. If everyone becomes like that, in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, or everyone tries to apply his energy for the service of the Lord, then this world becomes kingdom of God actually.

But that is not possible. Here there is another, opposing element, which is called māyā, or Satan, who is acting against this principle. So we cannot expect that cent percent people will be God conscious, or Kṛṣṇa conscious. That is not possible, because here in this material world... This material world means it is a place where māyā is predominant. Māyā is predominant means the forgetfulness of God is predominant. Māyā means nothing. Māyā is not a ghost. Māyā is a condition of consciousness. That's all. When you forget God, or Kṛṣṇa, that is called māyā. And in the Bhagavad-gītā it is very nicely explained in the Seventh Chapter that daivī hy eṣā guṇamayī mama māyā duratyayā [Bg. 7.14]: "The influence of māyā is so strong that it is very difficult to surmount." Yes. Māyā is energy of God also.

So as your energy can produce so much wonderful thing, why not Kṛṣṇa's energy, or God's energy, is very strong? Yes. It is very strong. Just like you are also energy, but why you are not strong? Just like when you are criminal, when you are in the custody of police energy of the government, you are weaker. You are all the..., one of the energies of this government. The whole population is the energy of the government, producing. This is an example. But one energy is civil population, another energy is criminal population, and another energy, the government. So the criminal population means against the principles of government. And civil population means law-abiding principle of government. And the law-order energy means to punish the criminals.

So this māyā is law-and-order energy of God. And we, those who have come to this material world, we are all criminal energy now. We are not actually criminal. Just like a man born is not criminal, but by association he becomes a criminal, or by association he becomes a godly man. It is a question of association. Similarly, the spirit soul, as son of God, he is pure. He is as pure as anything. As God is pure, similarly, the son of God is also pure. But as soon as he forgets God and wants to become free, or wants to become imitation God... Here in this material world everyone is trying to become an imitation God. God is one. God cannot be two. But here the struggle for existence means that these, I mean to say, living entities who are put into this material world, every one of them is trying to become an imitation God. Therefore there is struggle.

I am trying to... Either collectively or individually, everyone is trying to become a certain type of God. What is that God? God means, I have several times explained, that God means the richest man, the richest, famous man, the most famous man, the strongest man, the beautiful man, the learned man and the renounced man. You just find out who is God. That is defined in the Vedic literature, that the person who has got the utmost opulence, utmost strength, utmost beauty, utmost knowledge and utmost renunciation, He is God. This is the definition of God. You can find out some rich man, but you cannot find out the richest man. Every day you will find so many competitors. So as soon as you find the richest man—nobody can surpass Him—then He is God. So these are some of the examples.

So it is to be understood that all living entities who have come to this material existence... This material existence means this is a life which is not permanent. Why it is not permanent? It is not permanent for this reason: that we are given a chance, this material manifestation, creation of this material world, and let loose the living entities. These are all statement in the Bhagavad-gītā. Mama yonir mahad-brahma tasmin garbhaṁ dadāmy aham [Bg. 14.3].

The history of creation, as we learn from the Vedic literature, that after creation of this material world, the living entities are impregnated... Just like a man constructs a nice house or takes a very nice apartment and begets children in the womb of his wife, similarly, the material nature is the mother, and the father is God, and we are all children. These are the Vedic literature description.

So who are these children? These children are all criminals. All criminals. Beginning from Brahmā, the highest living creature, down to the ant, a small, insignificant ant, more or less we are criminals, and we are suffering the consequences. We cannot deny. If we are sincere, if we actually believe in the śāstras, in the Vedic literature, then our sufferings are due to our mischievous activities.

So according to the mischievous activities, there are different kinds of suffering and there are different kinds of species of life. But māyā, the spell of māyā is so strong that one cannot understand that he is suffering. We understand that we are trying to be happy. Actually, this material world, there is no happiness, but to counteract the agency of distress, we accept, "That is happiness. That is happiness." Just like I have no apartment, but to counteract this inconvenience, if I try my utmost to get a good apartment I feel, "Oh, now I am happy. I am happy." What is this happiness? How long you shall remain in this apartment? Suppose you have got, purchased. Now long you will live?

So here happiness means to counteract the force of distress is called happiness. Actually there is no happiness. This is called māyā. Just like I am in distressed condition, puzzled, I take some intoxicant. This is called happiness. I remain in the same condition. After my intoxication is over, I come back again into the same condition, but I am thinking I'm happy. This is called māyā. Māyā means... Ma means "not"; means "this." "You are thinking like this, but it is not this." This is called māyā. You are thinking that you are happy, but you are not happy. So we are seeing that a criminal is arrested by the police and he is put into the prison house. We know that he is put into trouble, but still, in spite of seeing that "This kind of criminality will put me also into such kind of distress," but still, I commit that thing. This is the influence of māyā. This is the influence of māyā!

So these all description of hellish description has been given in the previous chapter. Now Parīkṣit Mahārāja, he is a Vaiṣṇava. A Vaiṣṇava, Vaiṣṇava feeling... Vaiṣṇava means he is always feeling for the distress of the others. Just like Lord Jesus Christ. What is the necessity of being crucified? Because he was a Vaiṣṇava. Vaiṣṇava means the servant of God or the devotee of God, Vaiṣṇava. Viṣṇu means Lord, and Vaiṣṇava means one who is devotee of Viṣṇu, he is called Vaiṣṇava. Godly. Godly person. Vaiṣṇava means godly person.

So every godly person, he thinks for others. "Oh, people are suffering for want of knowledge, for want of God consciousness, for want of Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Oh, let me do some service. Let me enlighten them so that they may be happy." Therefore we offer our obeisances to the Vaiṣṇavas: vāñchā-kalpa-tarubhyaś ca kṛpā-sindhubhya eva ca [Vaiṣṇava-praṇāma]. Vāñchā-kalpa-taru means that "My dear devotee, you are just like a desire tree. Whatever I desire from you, you fulfill." Vāñchā-kalpa-tarubhyaś ca kṛpā-sindhubhya eva ca. Kṛpā means mercy. "You are the ocean of mercy," and patitānāṁ pāvanebhyo, "and you are deliverer of the fallen souls. Therefore I offer my obeisances unto you."

It is very nice to offer respect to a godly person. Is described very nicely. Why? Now, patitānāṁ pāvanebhyo. A godly person's business is to reclaim the fallen souls. They cannot see... A godly person sees that "Here is my brother. He is son of God. I am son of God. Without enlightenment, without knowledge of God, he is suffering. So let me give him some knowledge of God." This is godly person's business.

He has no other business. He has no business to find out where to eat, where to sleep. Oh, that God provides for him. If God can provide food and shelter for cats and dogs, do you think God will not provide food and shelter for His confidential devotee? Is God so blind or ingratitude or unable? If He is able to feed innumerable living entities within this universe, does it mean that one who has sacrificed his life for God's service, he will starve? No.

In the Bhagavad-gītā it is said, kaunteya pratijānīhi na me bhaktaḥ pranaśyati [Bg. 9.31]: "My dear Kaunteya, Arjuna, you declare it to the world that My devotee will never be vanquished." Never be vanquished. Another place it is said, teṣāṁ nityābhiyuktānāṁ yoga-kṣemaṁ vahāmy aham [Bg. 9.22]: "Those who are constantly engaged in My service, for them, I personally carry all the necessities to his home." So rest assured that if you become Kṛṣṇa conscious, if you become God conscious, there will be no scarcity of happiness. Don't think that "If I devote my life only for Kṛṣṇa consciousness I will be starving." No. So this enlightenment is given by godly persons.

So here Mahārāja Parīkṣit, he was very godly person. He was so great devotee that there is no comparison. He is... So he is asking, after hearing the hellish punishment of the criminals, he is asking,

adhuneha mahā-bhāga
yathaiva narakān naraḥ
nānogra-yātanān neyāt
tan me vyākhyātum arhasi

[SB 6.1.6]

He is addressing Śukadeva Gosvāmī. He has accepted Śukadeva Gosvāmī as his spiritual master. Therefore he says, mahā-bhāga, "the most fortunate man." You have to select a spiritual master, the most fortunate man. And who is most fortunate man? One who has understood Kṛṣṇa, he is most fortunate man. Not that one who has got dozens of motorcars, he is most fortunate man. You do not know where he is going after this body. You see? He may be enjoying very nicely in this life, but he is not preparing for the next life. This life is preparation for the next life.

The modern civilization does not know that every living entity is eternal; he is changing simply different phases of life. So if one is ignorant how he is changing his different phases of life, what is his next life, what he was in the past life... How one can know? One can know, śāstra-cakṣuṣāt. One can know from the scriptures, from the authorized books, as you know so many things. How you know that the moon planet or sun planet or this planet or that planet have got so many things, this or that? It is from the books. You have never gone to the moon planet, but you learn it from the books, authorized books. Simply you have to consult authorized books, you get learned yourself.

So the Vaiṣṇava, I mean to say, Mahārāja Parīkṣit, he was very much distressed when he heard about the hellish punishment of the criminals. So he's asking, mahā-bhāga, "My dear fortunate." He's asking Śukadeva Gosvāmī... Śukadeva Gosvāmī was naked. He was so renounced that after his birth, he left his home. And he was traveling, wandering, and when he met Mahārāja Parīkṣit he was only sixteen years old and naked, but he is accepted as the spiritual master of this great king because he was full of knowledge. It is a question of knowledge; it is not the question of age. He was only sixteen years old, and he was not even properly dressed, but God kindly sent him for instructing this king. So he is asking, "Mahā-bhāga, can you explain how these suffering men can be delivered from this hellish suffering?" So he was feeling.

This is the sentiment of Vaiṣṇava. They cannot see the suffering humanity. They always try to reform them and to get them as... Not only the devotees; the Lord also, He is so compassionate He sends His son, His most confidential son, Jesus Christ. He comes Himself, He sends His incarnation, He sends His knowledge. Just like this Bhagavad-gītā is knowledge. He speaks Himself about this knowledge. His representatives are there by disciplic succession. So we can take advantage of all these things. Still, there is Kṛṣṇa. Still there is speaking Kṛṣṇa and His representative, and everything is there. Simply we have to take advantage. That's all. But the spell of māyā is so strong that it does not allow.

daivī hy eṣā guṇamayī
mama māyā duratyayā
mām eva ye prapadyante
māyām etāṁ taranti te

[Bg. 7.14]

So if you know the secret of success, that is not very difficult. There it is... The statement is given by Lord Kṛṣṇa Himself that "The spell of māyā is very strong undoubtedly. It is insurmountable. But if one is intelligently..., or one is intelligent enough and comes to My shelter, oh, there is no more spell of māyā."

So we have to become little intelligent to take to this Kṛṣṇa consciousness. It is not very costly thing. You haven't got to pay for it; you haven't got to lose anything. But if you simply chant Hare Kṛṣṇa whenever you get opportunity... You have got so much opportunity. Instead of talking nonsense and wasting your time, if you please chant Hare Kṛṣṇa, your life will be successful.

Thank you very much.

Devotees: Hare Kṛṣṇa.

Prabhupāda: Any question?

Guest: Your Holiness, would you call Christ an [indistinct] of Kṛṣṇa consciousness.

Prabhupāda: Yes. There are stages of Kṛṣṇa consciousness. According to time, circumstances and people, Kṛṣṇa consciousness is understood in different measure. Actually, Kṛṣṇa consciousness is that one should understand that God is great and we are minute particles of God. Just like the sun globe and the sunshine. The sunshine is the combination of brilliant molecular atoms, sunshine. Similarly, we are molecular sparks, spiritual sparks, but the quality of the molecule of the sunshine and the sun is the same—light. Similarly, we, although very minute particle of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, but qualitatively we are one. Quantitatively we are different.

So if one understands that we are small particles of the Supreme Lord and our business is to dovetail our consciousness with His consciousness, that is perfect Kṛṣṇa consciousness. But it is not very easy also at the same time. To immediately accept that "My consciousness may be dovetailed with Kṛṣṇa's consciousness," then I become almost like Kṛṣṇa.

The example I have given here in this class many times, that a car, motorcar, is running at seventy miles speed, but if a cyclist catches the motorcar, he can also run on the same speed. So although the cyclist is small... Similarly, although we are small particle... Just like in the fire, these sparks, the particle sparks, we can see they are very small in comparison to the fire, but when the fire and the sparks are together, everything is beautiful. Everything is beautiful. The sparks also looks very beautiful, and the fire also looks very beautiful. So God has become many. Eko bahu syāma. Why? Because as it is stated in the Vedānta-sūtra, ānandamayo 'bhyāsāt [Vedānta-sūtra 1.1.12]. He is by nature ānandamaya, joyful. [end]