Prabhupāda: [chants maṅgalācaraṇa prayers]

om ajñāna-timirāndhasya jñānāñjana-śalākayā
cakṣur unmīlitaṁ yena tasmai śrī-gurave-namaḥ

["I offer my respectful obeisances unto my spiritual master, who with the torchlight of knowledge has opened my eyes, which were blinded by the darkness of ignorance."]

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?"]

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."]

vancha-kalpa-tarubhyas ca kripa-sindhubhya eva ca
patitanam pavanebhyo vaishnavebhyo namo namah

["I offer respectful obeisances unto all the Vaishnava devotees of the Lord, who can fulfill the desires of everyone, just like desire trees, and are full of compassion for the fallen conditioned 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."]

Ladies and gentlemen, I thank you very much for your coming to this meeting, saṅkīrtana movement. This saṅkīrtana movement is very authorized, according to Vedic literature. Most of you are well acquainted with the studies of Bhagavad-gītā. And in the Bhagavad-gītā also you'll find,

satataṁ kīrtayanto māṁ
yatantaś ca dṛḍha-vratāḥ
namasyantaś ca māṁ bhaktyā
tuṣyanti ca ramanti ca

[Bg. 9.14]

[Always chanting My glories, endeavoring with great determination, bowing down before Me, these great souls perpetually worship Me with devotion.]

Satataṁ kīrtayanto mām. Those who are mahātmās... Mahātmā means great soul. Mahātmā is not created. Mahātmā means... That is also explained in the Bhagavad-gītā, who is mahātmā. Kṛṣṇa says, bahūnāṁ janmanām ante [Bg. 7.19]

[After many births and deaths, he who is actually in knowledge surrenders unto Me, knowing Me to be the cause of all causes and all that is. Such a great soul is very rare.]

"After many, many births." Of course, at the present moment they do not believe whether there is birth after death. But it is not the question of whether you believe or not believe. The truth is truth.

So there is birth after death. Na hanyate hanyamāne śarīre [Bg. 2.20].

[For the soul there is never birth nor death. Nor, having once been, does he ever cease to be. He is unborn, eternal, ever-existing, undying and primeval. He is not slain when the body is slain.]

You do not die after finishing this body. You accept another body. That you can experience daily. In your childhood... You can remember that you had a body just like this child. Now you are grown up. Where is that body? That body is gone. Now you have got a new body. But you know that "I had a childhood body like this. I was attending such-and-such meeting," but that body is now no longer existing.

So this transmigration of the soul is very simple subject. Any sensible man can understand. And in the Bhagavad-gītā, in the very beginning of the instruction, Kṛṣṇa says,

dehino 'smin yathā dehe
kaumāraṁ yauvanaṁ jarā
tathā dehāntara-prāptir
dhīras tatra na muhyati

[Bg. 2.13]

[As the embodied soul continually passes, in this body, from boyhood to youth to old age, the soul similarly passes into another body at death. The self-realized soul is not bewildered by such a change.]

Dhīra, those who are sober, intelligent, they are not bewildered when a living entity changes his body.

So change of body is going on in every moment, in every second, imperceptibly. Medical science also accepts that in every second we are changing our blood corpuscles. That is a fact. We are changing body every moment. And the final change is called death. But actually, there is no death. Na hanyate hanyamāne śarīre [Bg. 2.20]. You accept another body.

[For the soul there is never birth nor death. Nor, having once been, does he ever cease to be. He is unborn, eternal, ever-existing, undying and primeval. He is not slain when the body is slain.]

Therefore Kṛṣṇa says, bahūnāṁ janmanām ante [Bg. 7.19]

[After many births and deaths, he who is actually in knowledge surrenders unto Me, knowing Me to be the cause of all causes and all that is. Such a great soul is very rare.]

"After many, many births," bahūnāṁ janmanām ante jñānavān, "when a man or a living entity becomes actually wise and intelligent..." Not fools. Fools cannot understand. One has to become very intelligent. Bahūnāṁ janmanām ante jñānavān. Jñānavān means very intelligent, wise man. Bahūnāṁ janmanām ante jñānavān māṁ prapadyate.

Kṛṣṇa says that "After many, many births of struggle, or attempt for acquiring knowledge, when one comes to the solid point of understanding, he understands that vāsudevaḥ sarvam iti [Bg. 7.19], the origin of everything is Vāsudeva, Kṛṣṇa." Bas. Origin of everything is Kṛṣṇa.

The Vedānta-sūtra says, the first aphorism of Vedānta-sūtra, athāto brahma jijñāsā: "Now this human form of life is meant for inquiring about Brahman." And the Veda says that ahaṁ brahmāsmi: "I am Brahman. I am not this body. I am spirit soul." And when one understands that he is spirit soul, brahma-bhūtaḥ prasannātmā [Bg. 18.54], at once he becomes joyful.

[And of all yogīs, he who always abides in Me with great faith, worshiping Me in transcendental loving service, is most intimately united with Me in yoga and is the highest of all.]

That is the sign of brahma-jñāna.

Brahma-bhūtaḥ... These are the versions of Bhagavad-gītā. Brahma-bhūtaḥ prasannātmā. As soon as one realizes that "I am Brahman. I have nothing to do with this material world," his all anxieties immediately finished. Brahma-bhūtaḥ prasannātmā na śocati na kāṅkṣati. In the Vedānta-sūtra you'll also find, ānandamayo 'bhyāsāt [Vedānta-sūtra 1.1.12].

[By nature, the Supreme Lord is blissful.]

The spirit soul or the Supreme Soul, both of them are ānandamaya. Ānanda means blissful, by nature blissful. Always wants to enjoy. That is the nature of spirit. But at the present moment, because we have forgotten that I am..., we are spirit soul, part and parcel of the Supreme Lord, mamaivāṁśo jīva-bhūtaḥ [Bg. 15.7]

[The living entities in this conditioned world are My eternal, fragmental parts. Due to conditioned life, they are struggling very hard with the six senses, which include the mind.]

Identifying ourself with something else, which is transcendent, we are suffering. This is the cause. There are many places.

bhayaṁ dvitīyābhiniveśataḥ syād
īśād api etasya viparyayo 'smṛtiḥ

[SB 11.2.37]

[Fear arises when a living entity misidentifies himself as the material body because of absorption in the external, illusory energy of the Lord. When the living entity thus turns away from the Supreme Lord, he also forgets his own constitutional position as a servant of the Lord. This bewildering, fearful condition is effected by the potency for illusion, called māyā. Therefore, an intelligent person should engage unflinchingly in the unalloyed devotional service of the Lord, under the guidance of a bona fide spiritual master, whom he should accept as his worshipable deity and as his very life and soul.]

Viparyayo 'smṛtiḥ means converted thinking. I'm not this any product of this material world, but I am thinking, "I am American," "I am Indian," "I am Englishman," "I am German," "I am Chinaman," "I am Russian," or "I am cats and dogs," these so many. These are all designations. These are all designations. My real identity is ahaṁ brahmāsmi: "I am Brahman. I am the part and parcel of the Supreme Brahman. Qualitatively, I am one with God." Just like a particle of gold is also gold. A small particle of the ocean is also salty. The chemical composition of the small particle of ocean water is the same as the big ocean. So qualitatively, I am one with God, or Kṛṣṇa.

When we speak of Kṛṣṇa, you'll please understand I am meaning God. Because Kṛṣṇa means all-attractive. Without being all-attractive, there cannot be God. God must be all-attractive: all-opulence, all-powerful, all-wise, all-renounced, all-beautiful. These are the qualification of God.

So bahūnāṁ janmanām ante. After cultivation of knowledge, many, many births... Cultivation of knowledge is also not easy for everyone. That is also stated in the Bhagavad-gītā. Manuṣyāṇāṁ sahasreṣu kaścid yatati siddhaye [Bg. 7.3]

[Out of many thousands among men, one may endeavor for perfection, and of those who have achieved perfection, hardly one knows Me in truth.]

"Out of many millions of persons, human being, one may be interested to know 'What is the aim of life? Why I am suffering?' " Everyone is suffering. That is the fact. In this material world nobody can be happy. If he's thinking… If one is thinking that he's happy materially, he's a fool. Nobody can be happy. This is the place for distress.

It is certified by the Supreme Lord, duḥkhālayam aśāśvatam [Bg. 8.15].

[After attaining Me, the great souls, who are yogīs in devotion, never return to this temporary world, which is full of miseries, because they have attained the highest perfection.]

This place is for miseries, as well as it is temporary. Even if you accept, "All right, it is a miserable place. I shall stay here. Never mind," but nature will not allow you to stay even. You... One day it will come, immediately kick you out. You have seen the great president of United States, Mr. Kennedy. He was supposed to be the happiest man in the world, but within a second he was kicked out, immediately. In our country Mahatma Gandhi was very popular leader, but in a second he was removed from the field.

So we do not know when we shall be removed immediately by the freaks of nature. Therefore the intelligent man should try to know, "What is my constitutional position? Why I want to stay, but some superpower kicks me out of the stage? Why?" This is question. This is called brahma-jijñāsā. Athāto brahma jijñāsā. The Vedānta-sūtra instructs that every human being—not the animals, but human being—you should not be bewildered. You should question, "Why I am suffering threefold miseries? Why... I do not want death. Why death overcomes me?"


[Bg. 13.9].

[Humility, pridelessness, nonviolence, tolerance, simplicity, approaching a bona fide spiritual master, cleanliness, steadiness and self-control; renunciation of the objects of sense gratification, absence of false ego, the perception of the evil of birth, death, old age and disease; nonattachment to children, wife, home and the rest, and evenmindedness amid pleasant and unpleasant events; constant and unalloyed devotion to Me, resorting to solitary places, detachment from the general mass of people; accepting the importance of self-realization, and philosophical search for the Absolute Truth—all these I thus declare to be knowledge, and what is contrary to these is ignorance.]

A intelligent man should always keep before him four principles of material miseries: birth, death, old age and disease. These are instruction of the Bhagavad-gītā. One who is making progress in knowledge, he must keep before him these four problems—birth, death, old age and disease. You may be very much proud of your scientific advancement of knowledge, but here is the real science. If you can overcome birth, death, old age and disease, then you can say your science is triumphant.

The Bhāgavata says, therefore, that,

dharmaḥ svanuṣṭhitaḥ puṁsāṁ
viṣvaksena-kathāsu yaḥ
notpādayed yadi ratiṁ
śrama eva hi kevalam

[SB 1.2.8]

[The occupational activities a man performs according to his own position are only so much useless labor if they do not provoke attraction for the message of the Personality of Godhead.]

Śrama eva hi kevalam. After executing your proper service or duties... Everyone is entrusted with some kind of duties. So if, after properly executing your duty as Indian or American or Englishman or scientist or businessman or father and mother... So many duties we have got. So dharmaḥ svanuṣṭhitaḥ puṁsāṁ viṣvaksena-kathāsu yaḥ, notpādayed yadi ratim [SB 1.2.8]

[The occupational activities a man performs according to his own position are only so much useless labor if they do not provoke attraction for the message of the Personality of Godhead.]

After executing your duty, if you do not develop your anxiety to inquire about Brahman...

Athāto brahma jijñāsā. This is the beginning of Vedānta-sūtra. People are indulging in studying Vedānta, but Vedānta-sūtra is not a matter of speculation. It is to be studied from the authorities. Tad vijñānārthaṁ sa gurum evābhigacchet [MU 1.2.12].

[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.]

So if, after executing your duties very properly, if you do not develop your consciousness to know about yourself or the Supreme Self, then whatever you have done, it is simply waste of time. That's all. Śrama eva hi kevalam. Simply laboring after nothing. That's all. That means spoiling human life.

So this message of Caitanya Mahāprabhu, Hare Kṛṣṇa movement, is to warn you, "Don't spoil this opportunity of human form of life. Don't spoil it."

āhāra-nidrā-bhaya-maithunaṁ ca
sāmānyam etat paśubhiḥ narāṇām

[Hitopadeśa 25]

[Both animals and men share the activities of eating, sleeping, mating and defending. But the special property of the humans is that they are able to engage in spiritual life. Therefore without spiritual life, humans are on the level of animals.]

Eating, sleeping, mating and defending, these things are common to the animals and the human being. You eat; the animals eat. You sleep; the animals sleep. You mate; the animals mate. You are also afraid of your enemy; they are also afraid of your [their] enemy. So by discovering very palatable dishes to eat, or fashionable dresses for sex life, or atom bomb for defending... Eating, sleeping, mating and defending, these four principles, if you advance in these four principles only, that does not mean that you are better than animals. You are as good as animals.

Then how we can utilize this human form of life? That is stated: dharmeṇa hīnāḥ paśubhiḥ samānāḥ. Dharma. Dharma means not a religious faith. According to Sanskrit, dharma means constitutional position, which you cannot change. That is dharma. Just like sugar: sugar is sweet. Similarly, whenever there is sugar, it must be sweet. If you say, "Oh, this sugar is salty," that is not sugar. So sweetness is the dharma of sugar. That is real dharma. Not that today I accept Hinduism, next day I accept Christianism or next day I accept Muhammadanism. These are not dharmas. Real dharma you cannot change. It is not possible to change.

And what is that dharma? That dharma, Kṛṣṇa says, sarva-dharmān parityajya [Bg. 18.66]

[Abandon all varieties of religion and just surrender unto Me. I shall deliver you from all sinful reaction. Do not fear.]

"You give up all nonsense religion"; mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja, "just surrender unto Me." To surrender unto the Supreme Lord, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is real religion, and all other things are simply ritualistic or to lead one to that point. Real religion is when you surrender unto the Supreme Lord. That is your religion, real religion. Therefore Kṛṣṇa says, bahūnāṁ janmanām ante jñānavān māṁ prapadyate [Bg. 7.19]: after many, many births, when he is actually intelligent, he surrenders unto the Supreme Lord, vāsudevaḥ sarvam iti sa mahātmā [Bg. 7.19].

[After many births and deaths, he who is actually in knowledge surrenders unto Me, knowing Me to be the cause of all causes and all that is. Such a great soul is very rare.]

This mahātmā.

I began the topic "Who is mahatma?" So here is mahātmā. Who is mahātmā? Who has surrendered himself fully unto the lotus feet of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He is mahātmā. And what are the symptoms of mahātmā? Mahātmānas tu māṁ pārtha daivīṁ prakṛtim āśritāḥ. [Bg. 9.13].

Those who are mahātmā, they are not under the control of this material nature. They are under the control of the spiritual nature. Daivī-prakṛtim āśritāḥ. And what is the symptom of such person, that he is under the control of spiritual nature? That is also explained in the Bhagavad-gītā:

mahātmānas tu māṁ pārtha
daivīṁ prakṛtim āśritāḥ
bhajanty ananya-manaso...

[Bg. 9.13]

[O son of Pṛthā, those who are not deluded, the great souls, are under the protection of the divine nature. They are fully engaged in devotional service because they know Me as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, original and inexhaustible.]

Bhajanti. This bhajan, that is the sign of mahātmā.

You cannot create a mahātmā by rubberstamp or by votes. Mahātmā's symptom is that he's fully surrendered unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead and always engaged in glorifying His activities. His activities. Satataṁ kīrtayanto māṁ yatantaś ca dṛḍha-vratāḥ [Bg. 9.14].

[Always chanting My glories, endeavoring with great determination, bowing down before Me, these great souls perpetually worship Me with devotion.]

He's always very much careful about executing devotional service. Namasyantaś ca mām. He's always offering obeisances. Tuṣyanti ca ramanti ca [Bg. 10.9].

[The thoughts of My pure devotees dwell in Me, their lives are surrendered to Me, and they derive great satisfaction and bliss enlightening one another and conversing about Me.]

In this way they enjoy, tuṣyanti, and they're satisfied. These are the signs of mahātmā. So to become mahātmā and liberated... There are so many theories how to become liberated, how to become mahātmā, how to become religionist, how to become philosopher. There are many thoughts and theories, but real success of life is to become a mahātmā, broader, broader, broad-minded.

Mahātmā means broader-minded. They are not, I mean to say, short-minded, that "I am this," "I am that"—"I am Hindu," "I am Muslim," "I am Christian," "I am Indian," "I am German," "I am Englishman"—no. Mahātmā is sarvopādhi-vinirmuktam [Cc. Madhya 19.170].

[“’Bhakti, or devotional service, means engaging all our senses in the service of the Lord, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the master of all the senses. When the spirit soul renders service unto the Supreme, there are two side effects. One is freed from all material designations, and one’s senses are purified simply by being employed in the service of the Lord.’]

He is freed from all designation. These are all our designations. When I think, "I am Englishman" or "I am Indian," this is my designation. Because as soon as I change my this body, I accept another body. Then all my philanthropy as Englishman or Indian—immediately finished. Just like President Kennedy's presidentship and philanthropy all finished.

Now we do not know where is Mr. Kennedy and what he is doing. But he has got the body. That's a fact. That I have already explained. But neither you know, neither he knows that "I was president," or "I was this or that." Therefore this is called illusion, māyā.

So Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura says, keno māyāra bośe, yāccho bhese [from Gītāvalī]: "My dear friends, my dear brothers, why you are being washed away by the waves of this illusion? Don't be wasters[?]. Don't be washed away." Just like if you are thrown into the ocean you are washed away by the waves, similarly, by the waves of this material nature, prakṛteḥ kriyamāṇāni guṇaiḥ karmāṇi sarvaśaḥ [Bg. 3.27]

[The bewildered spirit soul, under the influence of the three modes of material nature, thinks himself to be the doer of activities, which are in actuality carried out by nature.]

We are being washed away from one body to another, one body to another, one body to another, in this way. But actually we do not want this. Actually every one of us, we want a permanent body, a permanent situation, a permanent life, a blissful life, a life of knowledge. That is our hankering.

But we do not know, do not know because we do not care to know. Otherwise everything explained. You haven't got to study many books. You just simply study Bhagavad-gītā As It Is. We have therefore published this Bhagavad-gītā As It Is, without any nonsensical interpretation. "As It Is." Then you'll get all this knowledge and you'll know what you are meant for.

So this movement is just to revive your consciousness, original consciousness. Original consciousness is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. And all other consciousness which you have now acquired, these are superficial, temporary. "I am Indian," "I am Englishman," "I am this," "I am that"—these are all superficial consciousness. Real consciousness is ahaṁ brahmāsmi.

So Lord Caitanya, who started this movement five hundred years ago in Bengal, India, He immediately informs you that jīvera svarūpa haya nitya kṛṣṇa dāsa [Cc. Madhya 20.108], that our real identity, real constitutional position, is that we are part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa, or God.

[“It is the living entity’s constitutional position to be an eternal servant of Kṛṣṇa because he is the marginal energy of Kṛṣṇa and a manifestation simultaneously one with and different from the Lord, like a molecular particle of sunshine or fire. Kṛṣṇa has three varieties of energy.]

Therefore you can understand what is your duty. Just like this hand is part and parcel of your body. Now, what is the duty of this hand? To serve the body, that's all. The hand cannot enjoy independently. It is not possible. If you cut off this hand from this body and throw into the street, nobody will care for it. But so long it is attached with this body, it has got millions and trillions of dollars' value. If there is any trouble, you will be prepared to spend any amount. But when you are detached, this hand is detached from this body, you don't care for it, even it is trampled down by any man.

So this is our position. We are part and parcel of the Supreme Lord. There are many examples I can give you. Just like a machine part, a screw. If it is fallen down from the machine, it has no value. But if the machine is in trouble for want of that screw, you'll purchase that screw to set in and spend many dollars. Similarly, we are part and parcel of the Supreme Lord. If we remain attached with the Supreme Lord, then we have got value. Otherwise we have no value. Therefore Kṛṣṇa says in the Bhagavad-gītā that sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja [Bg. 18.66]

[Abandon all varieties of religion and just surrender unto Me. I shall deliver you from all sinful reaction. Do not fear.]

"You just be attached to Me. Then your all problems are solved."

So this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is... Just like you are part and parcel of the Supreme Lord. You are now detached. We are trying to dovetail you. That's all. Nitya-siddha kṛṣṇa-bhakti sādhya kabhu naya [Cc. Madhya 22.107].

[”Pure love for Kṛṣṇa is eternally established in the hearts of the living entities. It is not something to be gained from another source. When the heart is purified by hearing and chanting, this love naturally awakens.]

This is not an artificial imposition on you. The Kṛṣṇa consciousness is there. The living example you can see, that I have got now branches, twenty branches in Europe and America. They are neither Hindus nor Indian. How they are accepting Kṛṣṇa consciousness?

In our Society, International Society for Krishna Consciousness, perhaps I am the only Indian. Perhaps. Perhaps I am the only Indian. Perhaps it is fact. But why..., how they are taking it? Because it is there, Kṛṣṇa consciousness is there within you, within me, everyone. Simply we have to invoke it. That's all. And that invoking process is the saṅkīrtana movement. Ceto-darpaṇa-mārjanam [Cc. Antya 20.12].

[“’Let there be all victory for the chanting of the holy name of Lord Kṛṣṇa, which can cleanse the mirror of the heart and stop the miseries of the blazing fire of material existence. That chanting is the waxing moon that spreads the white lotus of good fortune for all living entities. It is the life and soul of all education. The chanting of the holy name of Kṛṣṇa expands the blissful ocean of transcendental life. It gives a cooling effect to everyone and enables one to taste full nectar at every step.’]

If you chant this simple process, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare/ Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare, you'll very quickly clear up your heart, and you will understand, vāsudevaḥ sarvam iti sa mahātmā su-durlabhaḥ [Bg. 7.19].

[After many births and deaths, he who is actually in knowledge surrenders unto Me, knowing Me to be the cause of all causes and all that is. Such a great soul is very rare.]

You'll understand that Kṛṣṇa, Vāsudeva, is everything. So this movement is neither manufactured nor bogus nor bluff, but it is genuine. It is authorized and it is natural, constitutional. Try to understand this philosophy. We are teaching nothing..., no new philosophy. Bhagavad-gītā as it is, that's all.

Unfortunately, Bhagavad-gītā is read all over the world, but there are many rascal interpreters. They have spoiled the whole thing. Simply spoiled. So we are struggling against them. You try to understand Bhagavad-gītā as it is, and you get the thing. The thing is immediately delivered to you. That is our request.

And in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam it is stated by Śukadeva Gosvāmī, he says, kaler doṣa-nidhe rājann asti hy eko mahān guṇaḥ [SB 12.3.51]

[My dear King, although Kali-yuga is an ocean of faults, there is still one good quality about this age: Simply by chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra, one can become free from material bondage and be promoted to the transcendental kingdom.]

"My dear King..." He was explaining Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam to King Mahārāja Parīkṣit. So he says... He, before saying this, he described about the condition of this Age of Kali. It is very... At the end of this age the condition will be very horrible. So... Of course, there is no much time; otherwise I would have explained something. But you know. You are experiencing about this age.

So after explaining the difficulties of this age, Kali-yuga, of which five thousand years we have already passed, and still, 427,000's of years are still remaining... So we have to pass through. So he says, "My dear King, I have explained to you the difficulties and miserable condition of this age, Kali-yuga. But there is a great opportunity." Asti hy eko mahān guṇaḥ: "A very nice thing is there," mahān guṇaḥ, "very great opportunity, great boon."

And what is that? Kīrtanād eva kṛṣṇasya mukta-saṅgaḥ paraṁ vrajet [SB 12.3.51]: "Simply by chanting this Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra, one can become freed from all contamination, and he'll be eligible to be promoted to the spiritual param." Param means beyond this dark region.

This material world is called tamaḥ, dark region. Just like there is no sun now; it is dark. We have to illuminate by electric light, by moonlight, by so many things. Actually the nature is dark. Therefore the Vedic injunction is, tamasi mā jyotir gama: "Don't try to remain in this dark region. Go to that effulgent region." Tamasi mā jyotir gama. The Bhagavad-gītā also says the same thing: yad gatvā na nivartante tad dhāma paramaṁ mama [Bg. 15.6].

[That abode of Mine is not illumined by the sun or moon, nor by electricity. One who reaches it never returns to this material world.]

Paras tasmāt tu bhāvo 'nyo 'vyakto 'vyaktāt sanātanaḥ

[Bg. 8.20].

[Yet there is another nature, which is eternal and is transcendental to this manifested and unmanifested matter. It is supreme and is never annihilated. When all in this world is annihilated, that part remains as it is.]

Everything is there in the Bhagavad-gītā. So our request is that you read Bhagavad-gītā As It Is. Here there are many Englishmen and Indians. That is my request. I am not charging anything. I am not making a profession. This saṅkīrtana movement, we are chanting freely. You can hear. There is not... Not that it is a secret thing—if you pay me something, then I shall disclose. No. It is open secret. Anyone can take, and there is no loss. If you chant Hare Kṛṣṇa, there is no loss, but there is great gain. You can try it.

So we are freely distributing it by chanting. You join with us, you try to understand us, what is our philosophy. We have got monthly magazine, Back to Godhead. We have got many publications: Bhagavad-gītā As It Is, Teachings of Lord Caitanya. If you want to understand this movement through philosophy, science, argument, we are prepared. There is ample opportunity for you. But if you simply chant, there is no need of education, there is no need of philosophizing. Chant Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare/ Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare, and you gain everything.

Thank you.

Devotees: Haribol!


Prabhupāda: ...mantra, you'll have Kṛṣṇa consciousness as soon as... The process is to cleanse your heart. So when your heart will be clear, then you'll understand your own position, your relationship with Kṛṣṇa and your relationship with this world. Then you'll be able to chalk out your plan, what to do. But without knowing your identity, whatever you are doing, that is simply waste of time.

Guest (1) [Indian man]: Would you say that Kṛṣṇa is God or Kṛṣṇa is love?

Prabhupāda: Well, without love, how Kṛṣṇa can be God?

Guest (1): No, I ask you.

Prabhupāda: Yes. That is the real position. Kṛṣṇa means all-attractive. Anything which is all-attractive you generally love.

Guest (1): So the particle of man of the Supreme Being is all-love.

Prabhupāda: Yes. You are part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa. You want to love somebody, and Kṛṣṇa wants to love you. This is loving exchange. But instead of loving Kṛṣṇa, you are trying to love something else. That is your trouble. The love is there in you and Kṛṣṇa, and when the love will be exchanged between you and Kṛṣṇa, that will be your perfection of life.

Guest (1): Thank you.

Guest (2) [Indian lady]: Would it matter if I worship any other? Would it matter whether I worship Kṛṣṇa or Śiva or Christ or Buddha? Would it matter? As long as... [break]

Prabhupāda: If you worship Śiva, you'll get Śiva. If you worship Kṛṣṇa, you'll get Kṛṣṇa. Why do you expect Kṛṣṇa by worshiping Śiva? What is your idea?

Guest (2): My idea is, would it matter, I mean, if instead of...

Prabhupāda: If you… Suppose if you purchase ticket for India, you'll go to India. How you can go to hell?

Guest (2): This is not the point.

Prabhupāda: This is the point. That is explained in the Bhagavad-gītā. Yānti deva-vratā devān pitṝn yānti pitṛ-vratāḥ [Bg. 9.25].

[Those who worship the demigods will take birth among the demigods; those who worship ghosts and spirits will take birth among such beings; those who worship ancestors go to the ancestors; and those who worship Me will live with Me.]

Guest (2): But my point is...

Prabhupāda: Your point, you understand. Why you don't understand? This is the description of the Bhagavad-gītā. If you worship demigods like Śiva and others, you will go there. And if you worship Kṛṣṇa, you'll go to Kṛṣṇa. What is the difficulty to understand?

Guest (2): Do you mean that Śiva is demigod?

Prabhupāda: Yes. Why not?

Guest (2): Because according to the philosophy...

Prabhupāda: What is that philosophy?

Guest (2): That Kṛṣṇa [indistinct].

Prabhupāda: What is the sense that…

Guest (2): Kṛṣṇa says that it doesn't matter the way you worship Him. All means has the same goal, leads to the same goal. "You can take the different paths, but you will come to Me eventually." Then why you are saying that Śiva is...

Prabhupāda: Well, same goal, you just try to understand. Same goal... Suppose you have to go to the forty-second or one hundredth story. Now, you are stepping one after another. The goal is there, the forty-second story, but you cannot claim, after going a few steps, you say that "I have come to the forty-second story." The path is one. That's all right. But you have to reach to the ultimate goal. You do not know what is the ultimate goal. You simply say all paths reach to this goal, but you do not know what is goal.

Guest (2): Because what I meant... I would like to know... Suppose... This is the point that we want to recommend. We are like drones[?], and we could go to Gokula[?] in any way, in any other way.

Prabhupāda: No. That is not explained in the Bhagavad-gītā, and that is your wrong interpretation. Any way, no. The same way you have to go. Just like in the Bhagavad-gītā it is said, mama vartmānuvartante manuṣyāḥ pārtha sarvaśaḥ [Bg. 4.11]

[All of them—as they surrender unto Me—I reward accordingly. Everyone follows My path in all respects, O son of Pṛthā.]

"Everyone is trying to come to Me." But someone has come a few steps, another has come to another few steps, another step. Ultimately... That was... I explained it.

You have to reach that Vāsudeva. That comes to the..., or that is possible after many, many births. It is clearly said, "After many, many births," bahūnāṁ janmanām ante [Bg. 7.19]

[After many births and deaths, he who is actually in knowledge surrenders unto Me, knowing Me to be the cause of all causes and all that is. Such a great soul is very rare.]

"One comes to this point." Another verse in the Bhagavad-gītā, it is said that kāmais tais tair hṛta-jñānāḥ prapadyante 'nya-devatāḥ [Bg. 7.20].

[Those whose minds are distorted by material desires surrender unto demigods and follow the particular rules and regulations of worship according to their own natures.]

Anya-devatāḥ. Those who are bewildered by lust, material lust, they go to worship other demigods. So these things are there. How can you deny it?

Guest (2): I'm sorry, I couldn't agree with you that Śiva is a demigod. I couldn't believe it.

Prabhupāda: That is stated in everywhere. You have to learn it.

Guest (3) [Indian man]: [indistinct] ...consciousness, then what is that other Kṛṣṇa? Or, other than Kṛṣṇa, what [indistinct]? And wherefrom [indistinct]?

Prabhupāda: Yes. I quite follow you. Everywhere is sunshine, but still, the sun's situation is a particular place.

Guest (3): [indistinct]

Prabhupāda: The sunshine is everywhere, but still, the sun planet is situated at a particular localized place.

Guest (3): It is manifested locally. It is not localized. It is manifested locally.

Prabhupāda: But do you distinguish between sunshine and the sun planet? Or you say because the sunshine has come within your room, therefore sun planet has come within your room? Do you think like that?

Guest (3): It is a conception of the mind.

Prabhupāda: Why mind? It is a fact. Why do you say "mind"? Can you say that "Oh, because the sunshine has come within my room, the sun planet has come"? Everyone will say you are a fool. It is not mind; it is a fact. The sunshine is light, and the sun globe is light. So light is there, both, but still, there is difference between sunshine and the sun globe.

Guest (3): Is that the difference?

Prabhupāda: That difference. Kṛṣṇa and Kṛṣṇa's energy all, everywhere. That is explained in the Bhagavad-gītā.

mayā tatam idaṁ sarvaṁ
jagad avyakta-mūrtinā
mat-sthāni sarva-bhūtāni
nāhaṁ teṣv avasthitaḥ

[Bg. 9.4]

[By Me, in My unmanifested form, this entire universe is pervaded. All beings are in Me, but I am not in them.]

"Although everything is resting on Me, still I am not there."

Guest (4) [Indian man]: Is this world a real place? Is this world a real place?

Prabhupāda: What do you mean by real?

Guest (4): What?

Prabhupāda: What do you mean by real?

Guest (4): According to what you were saying, it's illusion.

Prabhupāda: Yes. Illusion, illusion in this way, that what you take it as a fact, but it is something else. It is not fact. Māyā. Māyā means mā-yā: "It is not this." Just like you are thinking that you'll be happy in this material world by adjustment, but you'll never be. That is called māyā. So whatever you are struggling for, that is illusion.

Guest (4): If this is an illusion, then why is it here? What's it doing here?

Prabhupāda: Illusion is a temporary existence. This is also explained in the Bhagavad-gītā, bhūtvā bhūtvā pralīyate [Bg. 8.19].

[Again and again the day comes, and this host of beings is active; and again the night falls, O Pārtha, and they are helplessly dissolved.]

It comes into existence, just like cloud. Of course, we Vaiṣṇava philosopher, we do not say actually illusion. We say temporary. Actually we say temporary. Anitya. Anitya. The exact word is anitya. Anitya means... Nitya means eternal, and anitya means temporary. So we say this material world... [end]