Letter to: VARIOUS — Unknown Place, Unknown Date
The following are letters from His Divine Grace to particular devotees, these are to be considered the last of such letters, from now on all the letters will be answered by the GBC, thus leaving His Divine Grace to translate. Unless there happens to be any specific questions that cannot be answered by the GBC, then only will Prabhupada be disturbed, it is hoped that all devotees will read these very carefully. All Presidents should distribute these letters to all devotees, instead of hiding them in the files, which usually happens in most cases, thus very few devotees are actually aware of what is really going on in our Society.
Thank you very much.
Jai Hari dasa Brahmacari.
Letter No. 1 to Aksayananda Maharaja
Regarding your questions, in the spiritual sky everything is spiritual, so Krsna has no need for living in the heart. They are seeing Krsna face to face always, so what is the use of being in the heart? Outside, inside they are always the same, even their heart that is also sat-cit-ananda. There is no mechanical arrangement like this material body for anyone in the spiritual, what to speak of Krsna.
You can calculate how old is Lord Brahma. It is very difficult to say but only one day of Brahma in which we are, that has not yet passed. We have come in the middle of his first day. We find in Bhagavad-gita that Brahma's one day is equal to 1000 times 400,300 years. So we are fixing his one day, so similarly he has got one night of same duration, such month, such year, similarly such 100 years he will live. He is not even yet one day old, and there are millions of Brahmas and he is one of the smallest.
Letter No. 2: Pat Keller
I am very glad to hear that you are very serious to become a devotee of Krsna, and that your Christian background has led you to Krsna Consciousness. Actually there is no difference or contradiction between Christian religion and Krsna Consciousness movement, and because the science of devotional service is absolute, just like 2+2=4 in any country of the world, therefore we say it is nonsectarian and open for everyone. But one thing is, Krsna says in Bhagavad-gita mam ekam, "unto Me", so why we should divide our attention to others? "Sarva dharman paritajya, mam ekam saranam vraja:" just give up all varieties of religious dharmas and surrender unto Me, that is Krsna's final word. So if you want to make progress in Krsna Consciousness, do not divert your attention unnecessarily to other, "mam ekam," only unto Me, otherwise your spiritual life will not be very progressive.
Letter No. 3: To Mahati dasi
So far dreaming is concerned, we regard dreaming condition as another form of illusion or maya, only more subtle, that's all. But just like we may be serving Krsna in our waking state and thinking about Him then, so also it is possible to dream about Krsna and the Spiritual Master and so many things. But generally we should not take such dreaming very seriously, these are not very important matters. But if we occasionally dream of Krsna, that is nice, that means you are making advancement in Krsna Consciousness. But do not take such things very seriously, important business is to become conscious of Krsna all the time by absorbing the mind, body, and words in pleasing Krsna, and that means following strictly the regulative principles and practices of devotional service, such as chanting, reading, attending arati, going for street sankirtana, like that, and engaging oneself full time in some work for Krsna. In this way, you will become too much busy serving Krsna and there will be not time for feeling emoions or dreaming, that is advanced stage of spiritual perfection.
No. 5 to Tirthanga dasa
I do not know how these doubts have come upon you. Why bother about all these things? They are not very important. Everything is explained in Bhagavad-gita, Srimad-Bhagavatam, why you are still asking? If you believe whatever the material so-called scientists are saying, that is your business, but I do not believe any of their so-called observations in outer space by the blunt material senses can be true without any doubt. So why you doubt Vedas and not scientists. I cannot even see into the next room, how I can see anything very surely so many millions of miles distant? But if someone who has been there tells me, then I can know everything about that place. So we must have to take the authority of experienced persons to get the truth, and what experience our so-called scientists have got? Can they deliver even an ant from the miserable conditions of this spot-life, from birth, death, disease, and old age? No. They have spent simply millions of dollars to make a show of their so-called learning and the resul is a handful of dust, that's all. So we are not very much impressed by them, neither we take their version as perfect. They will say that millions of years ago the human beings were primitive hunters. But if we see Vedic language, we can understand that their thought and language and intelligence was not that of primitive men, no. If you are looking for some excuse to doubt, then maya will always provide you. So this or that you may find out something flaw if you want. But Krsna says surrender unto Me and I will give you all protection, perfect knowledge of everything. You should not go to modern scientists for perfect knowledge. They cannot supply that. Krsna will supply you. Of course, sometimes there is allegorical reference in the Vedas, just like the body is called the city of nine gates, like that, so we may sometimes misunderstand due to our imperfect reading. Even it is true that they have landed on the moon, so what is their accomplishment? If I come to Earth planet and land in the Sahara desert, then I say, "Oh, this planet is a barren desert, no one lives here?" The moon may be like that or like this, so what does that help to our Krsna consciousness movement. We have nothing to do with moon planet or this planet and that planet in Krsna consciousness. We simply want to serve to Krsna, that's all. Do not be disturbed by these things. Simply go on with your work in positive mood. That will be best for you and for other also. After all intelligence to understand Krsna is not within the range of your material senses. You cannot make any experiments and calculations and expect to find Krsna. But if somehow or other you are fortunate enough to find out a pure devotee of the Lord, then you get opportunity to him, and as you surrender Krsna gives you the intelligence by which you may come to him, that is sure. No other process will give us any intelligence to understand things as they are, except Krsna consciousness.
No. 6 Syamasundara to Kausika
Here are the points in brief: 1) Anyone who comes to a zone from outside must sell books only, no collecting; 2) They must follow explicitly the directions of the local presidents, e.g. they cannot be independent and live separately from the temple. So I suggested to Dhananjaya that each day he designates an area of London for them to distribute in which we have never touched before, especially for instance South London, Greenwich, Woolwich, Brixton, Herne Hill, like that—so they do not interfere with our Oxford Street. So in this way you must control them, and if (they) object or disobey in any (way), they must be sent away; 3) Ultimately the decision rests with the President whether their presence in London (or anywhere else) is favorable for the local situation, or if it is unfavorable. That is Dhananjaya's discretion. If he feels they are doing more harm than good, then they must go immediately. If they bark at going out after you have asked them to go, go see Mr. Jordan or someone at the Home Office and get them deported. But if their presence is judged as favorable in London, they can remain under the following conditions: 4) That, above and beyond the wholesale price (for books) not the cost price (our price), but above the usual wholesale price charged to temples—as if they were selling books to another temple, which we are, in fact—any profit must be given to London center (or the local temple wherever they are working); 5) Besides that, they should not be expected to get any special privileges above and beyond those enjoyed by other devotees and they must strictly obey the same regimen and practices of devotional service which are followed by the others. In future, before anyone from outside can enter another zone for exploiting, they must settle-up first with the GBC man for that zone. In this case, Kesava did not inform me, and you all did right by consulting me when they came. Of course, the point is to sell as many of Prabhupada's books as possible, somehow or other, so if they are favorable in that way, and their activities are not detracting from the overall program, and they are playing fair by giving you minimum 50%, then I have no objection, if they remain there.
Letter No. 11 Bali Mardana Gosvami to Karandhara: Jan. 31, 1973
From now on the twelve GBC men will be acting as Srila Prabhupada's secretary on a rotating basis as Srila Prabhupada originally planned, and it appears that I shall have to go with Him to Australia, at least a couple of weeks, to explain the system to Madhudvisa Swami. Syamasundara prabhu will be shortly going to London via Los Angeles. You will probably be seeing him there shortly. He has many big ideas for increasing the preaching work, which he will probably tell you about. I have just received your letter regarding polygamy and Prabhupada has told me it should strictly be prohibited; although he does not object to the principle, we do not have the correct persons nor the correct time and place for putting it into practice.
Letter No. 26-to a devotee.
I have heard a rumor by . . . that you have been detected, along with . . ., smoking ganja or other things like that. This is not at all good, and I am very much disturbed to hear it. I had also got one report that you were previously smoking ganja at..... You are one of the important leaders, so if you are feeble and you are still victim of such habits, then the other members who are following your example will be led to ruination by you only. That will be the greatest disservice to Krsna, if we work so hard to make a man a devotee and then seeing the older members taking intoxication and doing all nonsense, they become lost to Krsna, that is the greatest sin. You may be forgiven once, twice, but more than that it is impossible. So I do not know why this weakness has come upon you, you are intelligent boy, but we shall not tolerate such nonsense again. Once before our Rayarama was also detected and exposed as a cheater and he left our society. So no one is exempt from being asked to leave, only I have gt also great affection for you personally and you have done so much service that I am little reluctant to become angry upon you. But do not involve the other devotees in your nonsense activities of intoxication.
Now I am old man, I have become a little weakened, and I do not know how much longer I shall be able to push on this Krsna Consciousness movement in active preaching capacity. Therefore I have entrusted my right hand men, like GBC, sannyasis and men like yourself, to take up where I had left off and continue expanding and propagating KC all over the world as per the desire of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu. In this way, you have got the opportunity of being favored by Krsna to become responsible leader of the human society, therefore I am simply surprised that you have again fallen under the spell of old bad habits. If you are actually intelligent and not simply pretending intelligence, then you will take this as a lesson and make repentance. If Krsna sees that you are sincerely repenting, He will excuse you. As austerity, you should forget these things and never again think about them in your mind. That will make you very strong.
That is wanted, I want that all of my older disciples shall be very strong leaders of men. Actually, my plan is to one day be the ruling party all over the world and gradually infiltrate also your government. Throughout my life I have never thought any small things. Only about six years ago I could not even imagine how widespread and potent a force this KC movement would become, but now I am seeing that it is simply a miracle by Krsna that we are coming to the forefront of all other spiritual cultures in the world. So I think that in the future one day we shall become the ruling party, at least if we can do that in your country, then we may also do it everywhere else. So I am always thinking in this way, big plans on behalf of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. But I can understand that such big plans will never come true unless the planmakers and executers of the plan remain always extremely purified.
That is my only credit, that I have remained pure where all others have failed. Therefore this Hare Krsna movement is becoming stronger everywhere while the others are failing everywhere. And this Krsna Consciousness movement is running simply on the purity of its regulative principles. If the devotees, preachers, of our movement remain always pure by sticking strictly to the rules and regulations as I have given, that is, no eating of flesh, no intoxication, no illicit sex life, and no gambling, then without any doubt we shall conquer all other so-called spiritual cultures in the world very soon. So I think you understand these things, but why have you forgotten them?
Imagine how I am feeling when I hear such ugly rumors being spread about my oldest and most trusted disciples. Naturally I am very much aggrieved and forlorn. But I know that whether you or someone else, the right persons will come forword to assist me in spreading Lord Caitanya's prediction to every town and village. So Krsna has given you every facility and opportunity to yourself become one of the big chiefs or primary instruments of Krsna in this important work, but if you neglect it then what can I do? That decision to become very responsible and cool-headed leader of men, that conviction must rest with you
Letter no. 30. To Bhurijana dasa.
Now you have left the Hong Kong temple and no one is remaining there. Of course, it may be, as you say, strictly a city for doing business and no one is interested in Krsna Consciousness seriously. But still it is one of the most important cities of the world, so do not neglect it completely, that will be discredit. I have very, very much appreciated the Chinese BTG, that is a great victory for us. So far I know, no one else Indian spiritual movement has produced such literature in Chinese language. That is a big credit for you. And you have mixed with the Chinese people and they have purchased, there is good response, so why we are leaving that place? Your plan is to go there from time to time to collect money from the Hindus for spreading Krsna Consciousness in other places in Far East, that is nice. But if there is good opportunity to preach amongst the Chinese population, why not try for it? It will not accomplish much to go to them from time to time and preach something and then go away, no. Rather here must be place for them to come and see how this Krsna Consciousness way of life is practically applied, such as deity worship, cooking, rising early, cleansing, study, like that. Otherwise they are reserved people, they will not be easily convinced, and only if there is place where they may attend for many years even will they gradually accept. So I think there should be center there at Hong Kong, and emphasis should be to preach and sell books to the Chinese persons. Just like we have done it in Nairobi, Africa. There are also many Indians living at that place, and they are also wealthy businessmen, and the African black people are poor, neglected, not very much educated. So at the beginning Brahmananda was mixing only with those Indians, and they were giving profusely money, and there were so many plans for temple and deities. In this way he was neglecting to do the real work which was preaching to the black Africans. No one Hindu who is rich and living in foreign place is very much interested to become devotee, it is show only, sentiment or custom. So I wanted that he should preach to the Africans and convert them to become devotees, that should be his real business, nevermind wasting time with so many nonsense Indians. And as soon as he did as I instructed, immediately he has got some black devotees, and he has removed himself from the entanglement of the Hindus, and he is making good progress spreading Krsna Consciousness amongst the native citizens. And there black devotees are making advancement and they are also going out to preach themselves to other places in Africa. So that should be the program in Hong Kong. I read(?) to the Chinese residents, do not bother with the Hindu businessmen except to collect for the preaching work. Actually, the Indians will be glad to donate if they see you are converting Chinese to their religion. They will provide immense funds for this purpose, because they have got interest for improving Indian and Chinese relations for their business. So preach widely and enthusiastically to Chinese population, especially to the young people, and they may not respond quickly, but they are very sober-minded, when they decide to join us that will be fixed decision. So in this way go on and make some Chinese devotees, then they will manage things and spread further to other places in China. After all, a large portion of the earth's population is Chinese origin, so why should we neglect them? If you can turn only one or two men to be devotees, they can do the rest themselves. There is one boy here in India, I think he is going to Malaysia very soon, Lalita Krsna, and he is Chinese boy. Why not invite him there to help you open nice center in the Chinese neighborhood so the preaching will go on? Otherwise you yourself consulting Madhudvisa Swami, try to make some solution to the problem. If we cannot persuade at least one local man to come forward, then we have missed the point. But if you try for that, praying to Krsna for helping you remain strong, He does not like to see His devotees upset or frustrated, so if you are determined and sincere Krsna will do everything, you needn't worry for anything. At least one will come out to take up Krsna's mission, that is sure.
You request me for the purity to help on "engage in his eternal position as servant of Krsna, so I think that one soul is there in Hong Kong, Chinese boy, who can be helped by you. " why one soul, as preacher you will help many, many souls in that way, so try for that.
Letter No. 33 To Ravindra-svarupa.
So far as your course at the Temple University is concerned, that is the best platform for introducing our philosophy to the serious persons. And if they become sincere to learn the highest topics of subject matter or transcendental knowledge from us, that will be the perfection of their education. If you must read some other books of philosophers, even they are Mayavadis, as a sideline we can speak about them as comparative study. Otherwise our main aim is to study and preach Bhagavad-Gita and Lord Caitanya. Our purpose is to teach our own philosophy. Do not lose sight of that purpose or become distracted by other things. I have also made one book about other philosophies of your western philosophers, but I did not make compromise. My purpose was to defeat them and expose their nonsense propositions, in the light of Vedic knowledge or Krsna consciousness philosophy. That is our purpose.
Regarding your other questions, Lord Jagannatha does not have His own planet. The whole spiritual world is a manifestation of the spiritual energy of Krsna, so Subhadra or Radharani, they are spiritual energy of Krsna, but there are varieties of different forms of that energy, that's all.
Letter No. 34 To Ramananda.
I have no objection to paying you something monthly for doing the Hindi translating work, thereby freeing you to devote your time 100% in this way, but I am hesitating for one reason only, that it is the common understanding of Krsna Consciousness or the science of devotional service rendered to Krsna that we shall serve Him spontaneously and without any desire for compensation for our service. Our service to Krsna is voluntary and we are interested only that He shall be pleased, not myself. Therefore the advanced devotee is ready to serve Krsna under all conditions of difficulty or scarcity, never mind other things, because he knows in his mind that by giving his full attention and energy to Krsna, that the Supreme Personality of Godhead will not disregard this and make him to suffer. No, Krsna is not like that. If He sees His devotee sincerely and seriously trying to serve Him, He is prepared to give His devotee anything and everything to mitigate any suffering conditions. That is mature understanding and realization of Krsna Consciousness. Of course, I can understand that you are a married man, with wife and children, but so are many of my students, and what will they think if I give you money for your devotional service? But I do not give them any money? They will think something discrimination. "Oh, he is Indian boy, therefore Prabhupada is giving him some special favor," like that. I do not want to set such example. It is not that I cannot pay you, I am easily able to pay you, and I am willing to pay you in principle, only I do not want to create any example which may be mistaken by other students. So under these circumstances, if you do not want to give your time and energy full time for translating and editing the Hindi work, unless there is some compensation of money, then what can I do? All of these American and European boys and girls, they have had enough of money, they are sons of millionaires and rich men of America, still they do not ask me for one farthing for their work. They could go out and make thousands of dollars a month as educators and skilled professional men, still they prefer to live with me and eat only a little rice from the floor, and sleep on the cold ground without cover, that is their advanced realization of spiritual life.
Letter No. 36 To Jagamohini Dasi
...whether we may prune the leaves of Tulasi, no, there is no question of pruning. But you can take for worshiping Krsna leaves from the Tulasi. First utilize the dead leaves or leaves which have fallen down, and if more leaves are required for worshiping Krsna, you may take them from Tulasi plant in this way: First approach Tulasi Devi and offer your obeisances, requesting her that for worshiping Krsna you want to take some leaves. Then if she allows you may take. There is no question of pruning in the manner of gardeners just to make nice beautiful plant for ornamental purposes. And if there are any dead branches, these may be made into beads, like neck beads, and if they are large branches you can make japa beads. There is no need to keep candle burning all night, but you can burn candle in the evening for one hour for Tulasi Devi, that will be nice.
Letter No. 38 To Yukio Ogata and Mr. Kugillaty.
Please accept my greeting and blessings of Lord Krsna. I am in due receipt of your kind card wishing me the best for the new year coming of 1973, and I thank you very much for thinking of me in this way. As you are thinking of me, so also I am sometimes thinking of you with fond appreciation how much you are helping us to push on this Krsna Consciousness movement all over the world. That is the perfection of spiritual life, when one may utilize his occupational duty to serve the Supreme Personality of Godhead. In this way, although he is engaged in normal business pursuits, because he is contributing something of his energy for satisfying the Supreme, in return he shall be rewarded with something more satisfying than simple monetary considerations. Without such making sacrifice for God or Krsna, our life is only full of anxieties, worries, insecurities, and false ideas. Trying to be happy under these conditions is impossible. Still the materialistic men struggle to live long under great difficulty to tryto make a permanent settlement in the material environment, and everything is defeated at the moment of their death. So what is the use of such wasted labor? So we are most pleased that you and other good members and employees of Dai Nippon Company are giving such nice service to Krsna. That means you are getting benefit also. That means whenever Krsna is pleased by our working on His behalf, automatically everything becomes successful. He is the supreme proprietor of everything, so if He likes, He can give any amount of wealth, fame, reputation, like that. Therefore if one dedicates some portion of his energy to Krsna in this way, he is never the loser. And as you are wishing me the best in the new year, so also I wish you nice gentlemen and your co-workers at Dai Nippon the same. May Krsna bless you all more and more, in this year and all years to come.