Letter to: Japanese brothers and sisters , Los Angeles , 1970-03-10
My Dear Japanese brothers and sisters,
Please accept my greetings. It is a great opportunity that Sriman Sudama Das Adhikari, one of my American students, has gone to your country to spread the gospel of Krishna Consciousness under superior order. The original order is from Lord Caitanya Who appeared 484 years ago at Navadvipa, a district in Bengal, India, as Lord Buddha appeared at Gaya, a district in Behar, India. We, the followers of Vedic culture, accept both Lord Buddha and Lord Caitanya as incarnations of God, as both of them are stated to be so in the authorized Vedic scriptures.
The original Personality of Godhead is Krishna. Perhaps most of you who are present in this meeting have heard the name of the famous book "Bhagavad-gita." The teachings of the Bhagavad-gita were given to Arjuna by his friend and philosopher Lord Krishna 5000 years ago, and since then the cult of Krishna Consciousness is historically current in India. Most of you know that the people of India worship Lord Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead in many millions of Vedic temples, some of them more than two thousand years old.
But factually this Krishna Consciousness is coming down through a chain of disciplic succession from a time some millions of years ago because the first student of this cult was Vivasvan, the present predominating deity in the Sun-globe planet. Later on Vivasvan taught this philosophy to his son Manu, who again taught this philosophy to his son, King Iksvaku, who ruled over this earthly planet. The original ksatriya kings were all descendants from King Iksvaku, the father of the dynasty in which Lord Ramacandra appeared. That is a long history comprising a period covering not less than 40 million years according to Vedic scriptures. Lord Krishna also appeared in the same family a little more than 5000 years ago; and because the cult of Krishna Consciousness became broken in course of time, Lord Krishna again re-established the same formula by teaching His dear friend Arjuna for benefit of the entire human society.
Four hundred and eighty-four years ago Lord Caitanya preached this cult of Krishna Consciousness in a simple and practical way so that everyone can take it without any trouble and thusly become happy in this life as well as in the next. The purpose of Krishna Consciousness is to love Krishna or God. We have a general propensity to love someone else, which is the basic principle of living condition. Nobody can live without loving somebody else besides himself. This loving propensity for someone else is present in every living being. Even an animal like tiger has this loving propensity in dormant state, and what to mention of the human kind. But the missing point is where to repose our love so that everyone can become happy.
At the present moment, the human society has been educated to love his country or family or one's personal self, but they have no information where to repose the loving propensity so that everyone can become happy. Because the basic principle of love is that both the lover and the beloved or object of love and the lover must be happy by loving activities of the living being. In the primary stage a child loves his parents, then his brothers and sisters, and thus, as he grows up daily, he begins to love his family, society, community, country, nation, or up to the point of loving the whole human society. But the loving propensity is so expansive that even by loving the whole human society the loving propensity is not fulfilled on account of its imperfectness. This loving propensity can be fully satisfied when it is reposed in Krishna, and that is the sum and substance of this Krishna Consciousness movement.
My dear brothers and sisters, do not therefore consider this movement as sectarian or meant for any particular nation or community. In the Bhagavad-gita, which is the basic principle of this Krishna Consciousness movement, Lord Krishna says that He is the seed-giving father of all living creatures. There are many millions of species of life as aquatics, trees, plants, reptiles, insects, birds, beasts, and human races. All of them are living entities as the spirit soul, but they are present before us in many varieties of forms and dresses. A learned man is he who sees all living entities on equal category, never mind whether a living entity is highly cultured intelligent man, or a cow, or a dog, or an elephant, or even a dog-eater, who is considered to be low in the human society. These things we learn from authoritative Vedic scriptures.
The idea is that our loving propensity expands as vibration of air and light expands, but we do not know where it ends. The Krishna Consciousness movement teaches us this science how one can love everyone of the living entities perfectly by an easy method. We have failed to bring in peace and harmony in the human society even by such big attempts like the organization of United Nations because we do not know the method. The method is very simple, but one has to understand it in cool head. The method is simple and natural, and this movement teaches you how to do it. We teach all men to love Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. If you learn how to love Krishna, which is very easy, then immediately you love every living being simultaneously.
It is like pouring water on the root of the tree, or supplying foodstuff in the stomach. This method of pouring water on the root of the tree, or supplying food stuff in the stomach, scientific, practical and universal, experienced by everyone of us. Everyone of us knows it very well by practical experience that when we eat something, or in other words when we put foodstuffs in the stomach, the energy created by such action is immediately distributed throughout the whole body. Similarly, when you pour water on the root of the tree, the energy created by such watering is immediately distributed in the whole tree, never mind how great it is. But it is not possible to water the tree part by part, neither it is possible to feed the different parts of the body separately. One who does not know this method is missing the point.
At the present moment the human civilization has advanced very much to live comfortably so far our material necessities are concerned, but still we are not happy because we are missing the point. Simple material comforts of life are not sufficient to make us happy. The vivid example is America, and not to mention of other countries. The richest nation of the world having all facilities for material comforts, is producing a class of men completely confused and frustrated in life. I have dealt with them very intimately, and I have found out that the cause of their unhappiness is not material want, but it is insufficiency of spiritual comforts.
What is true for the Americans is also true for all other nations. Other poorer countries are trying to be happy by imitation of American ways of economic development. But such imitators are missing the point that in America, side by side, a dissatisfied class of men are growing with great rapid speed. This is also true in other countries; and the root cause of this dissatisfaction is that our dormant loving propensity has not been fulfilled, although we have much advanced in materialistic way of life.
When I first visited Tokyo in 1967 on my way back from India to the U.S.A., my impression of the city of Tokyo was that it is a replica of New York. My dear Japanese brothers and sisters, I think I am right if I say that you are trying to be happy by imitating the material opulences of America. But I must say that you cannot be happy in that way. This does not, however, mean that I am condemning the way of material advancement of life. We do not condemn any way of materialistic life, but we simply request everyone to learn how to love Krishna. This is the missing point. You live in any way as it may be suitable for your comfortable life, but side by side you learn the art of loving Krishna. At present we are utilizing our propensity of love by inventing so many ways, but factually we are missing the real point—Krishna. Or in other words, we are watering all parts of the tree, but we are missing the root of the tree; or we are trying to keep our body fit by all means, but missing the point of supplying foodstuff in the stomach.
Please therefore try to understand this Krishna Consciousness movement. I have sent there three of my young students to preach this sublime cult in Japan. Please cooperate with them and you will be happy. We do not want any remuneration for this service because we have engaged ourselves in the service of the Lord and we love each and every living being as part and parcel of the Lord. Neither we are sentimentalists without any background of philosophy and knowledge. We have got immense treasure-house of knowledge and philosophy. We have got our books BG, TLC, Bhagavatam, Isopanisad, etc. being published also with monthly magazines. But at the same time, we educate the mass of people by a simple process namely chanting the holy Name of Krishna. It is not at all difficult; even a child can take part in this holy chanting and derive the sublime benefit. Please therefore chant the mantra
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare
and thus be happy. Thank you very much.
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami