Room Conversation , Montreal , 1968-07-16

Prabhupāda: Very soon we shall have our own publication, Macmillan Company.

[pause] What is your report?

Devotee (1): I had a rough day today.

Prabhupāda: Huh?

Devotee (1): I didn't get any new members today. I went all over... I went over to McGill, and not very many teachers, professors there, know about the temple, especially the chemistry professors. I don't think chemistry professors go too well with Kṛṣṇa consciousness.

Prabhupāda: No. Every... You have to convince them that chemistry or philosophy or anything, without Kṛṣṇa consciousness, it is all useless. Sva-karmaṇā tam abhyarcya saṁsiddhiṁ labhate parām [Bg. 18.46].

[By worship of the Lord, who is the source of all beings and who is all-pervading, man can, in the performance of his own duty, attain perfection.]

That verse I was explaining, that,

ataḥ pumbhir dvija-śreṣṭhā
svanuṣṭhitasya dharmasya
saṁsiddhir hari-toṣaṇam

[SB 1.2.13]

[O best among the twice-born, it is therefore concluded that the highest perfection one can achieve by discharging the duties prescribed for one's own occupation according to caste divisions and orders of life is to please the Personality of Godhead.]

Taste for...

[pause] Oh, so many?

Govinda dāsī: Earlier you said you wanted it.

Prabhupāda: Huh? So he is recording there.

Govinda dāsī: Oh, I thought you wanted a Dictaphone? If not, I can...

Devotee (2): It must be better if you were recorded Swamji, [indistinct]... Some problem.

Prabhupāda: Hmm? Hmm? What is that?

Devotee (2): I think a tape recorder is better than a Dictaphone, because I think a tape recording is better.

Prabhupāda: Tape recording is going on?

Devotee (1): Yes.

Prabhupāda: You can sit down. So everyone is working. Never mind in whatever occupation one is engaged. That doesn't matter. But one has to test whether he is becoming successful. Because everyone wants success. We are not animals, that without any success we shall work hard labor. That is animals' business. Just like several times I have given the example, dophara gādhā, the ass of the washerman. That kind of busy-ness and work is no use. Dophara gādhā, ass of the washerman. Here, of course, you have no experience.

In India there is a class who are called washermen. In India there are different castes. Washerman, a class; barber, a class. I mean to say... So many departmental. So each and every one, there is a class who take up that work. Sweeper, a class. All the necessities. The clerk, even clerk, there is a class; priest, there is a class; the fighter, there is a class. That is nice arrangement. So in India... And florist, there is a class, florist. Their business is simply to supply flower. Fisherman, there is a class; butcher, there is a class. Just like we have got a temple, now we require potter. Potter, there is a class.

In Jagannātha temple the arrangement is that... One does not know since how long...

[someone enters] Come on.

In Jagannātha temple... Sit down. Jagannātha temple, the prasādam is cooked every day in new earthen pot. No old pot is used. Once used, it is thrown away. Formerly, this was the system in India. Even dishes, once used, it is thrown away. No washing. Even golden dishes, silver dishes, once used, it is thrown away. And now golden dishes..., there is no use of golden dishes, neither nobody throws it away. But that was the system.

Now the earthen dishes... Just like china clay dishes, this is considered impure, because it is repeatedly used. In India, those who are strict Hindus, earthen dishes, once used, it will be thrown away. Clay dishes. So this is china clay dish. It is not to be used again. It is thrown away. Just like you have got paper plates and glass here. You eat it and throw it away, similarly, India...

Now it is being introduced, these paper dishes, gradually, but from very old time, refreshment or foodstuff supplied in clay dishes, and after eating, it is thrown away. So there is a potter class, who flourish. They sell their products. Just like in your country also, so many things are thrown away so that the manufacturer get chance to sell again.

So everyone has got a particular type of profession. The potter, the washerman and the florist, the grain dealer, the silver or gold dealer, the banker, and... Everything. And the priest and the warrior. So even in India, still, there is no difficulty for draft board. There is a class, kṣatriya; oh, they will be very glad to be recruited as soldier. They are very strong. Jat. They are called jat, Gurkha. They don't like any other occupation. Fighting they like. The Sikhs.

The Sikhs, they are jat class, and the Gurkha, oh, the whole British Empire was extended with the help of the Sikhs and the Gurkhas. The Britishers took these Gurkhas and the Sikhs to Burma, to Mesopotamia. They liquidated the Empire because they lost India. The British soldiers were not helping to keep up their Empire. These Indians soldiers. In the first war they gained for these Indian soldiers. They fought in France and everywhere very nicely. They are fighter class. They like to fight.

And fighting is not going every day. So the arrangement was... Just like you have to fight for the state. So there is no monthly salary system. You are awarded by the government a certain tract of land free. You produce grains and utilize the land; no tax for you. But when there will be war, you shall fight. Very nice arrangement. Similarly, in temple, the florist has to supply flowers daily. Mr. Khanvar[?], am I right? You know this Indian system?

Mr. Khanvar: Yes.

Prabhupāda: So the florist is given a certain tract of land free, and let him produce flower and make business. But the quantity of flower I require for my temple, he must supply daily. Similarly, the bandsman, he should come and play band. Everything was on land distribution. That was the system. And tax was paid to the government. Not by assessment. Uh, assessment...

Whatever your land production is there, you give to the government one-fourth. That's all. If you have produced 1,000 maund grains, you have to give to the government 250 maunds. And if you have produced 100, then you give 25. So there is no question of harassment. Whatever is the production is there.

So these profession is accepted from Vedic time, different kinds of men engaged in different kinds of activities. Maybe a florist, maybe a potter, maybe a cobbler, maybe anything, grain producer... So many; society requires so many things. So according to Vedic system, there is a class, and Bhāgavata says that "You are engaged in your occupational duty; so whether you are getting success by such occupational duty?"

The Vedic system does not condemn anyone: "You are a potter. Oh, you are lower." No. You are as good as a priest, because you are doing your duty. That's all right. Never condemn. This is development of later age, when the so-called brāhmaṇas became, I mean to say, treacherous. They began to condemn so-called lower class. There was disruption, the whole social system. But in the beginning it was not.

So they have got respectable terms. Just like a brāhmaṇa is addressed as paṇḍita mahārāja. A kṣatriya is addressed ṭhākura saheb, ṭhākur. And a merchant is addressed sethji. And the laborer class addressed as choudhari, means leader. In this way everyone has got respectable position. Why? Because the test of their success was one: Viṣṇu. Success... Sva-karmaṇā tam abhyarcya siddhiṁ labhate param [Bg. 18.46].

[By worship of the Lord, who is the source of all beings and who is all-pervading, man can, in the performance of his own duty, attain perfection.]

Whatever your occupation may be, that doesn't matter. But if you worship the Supreme Lord by your occupation, then you are successful.

The florist supplies flower to the temple. The potter supplies pots to the temple. The priest chants mantra in the temple. The kṣatriyas, they protect the temple; he supplies the expenditure of the temple. Because the land belongs to the kṣatriya. They are royal class. Because they occupied land, so they have got the obligation to give protection to the country, fight. They shall fight. And here, at the present moment, the arrangement is that you have no land, you are landless, but you are called to fight. Why?

This system is condemned system. The kṣatriyas, they are royal class, they possessed land, so they had obligation to protect the country. Therefore they were fighting. How nice arrangement. Those who are occupying administration of the country, they should fight. But they are sitting very nicely in their armchair and calling somebody, "Go and fight and be killed." This system is not scientific system.

Therefore the caste system is very nice. They have now been condemned... Not condemned, but they want to revise it. But this is a very scientific system. Why? It is created by Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa says in the Bhagavad-gītā, cātur-varṇyaṁ mayā sṛṣṭaṁ guṇa-karma-vibhāgaśaḥ [Bg. 4.13]:

[According to the three modes of material nature and the work ascribed to them, the four divisions of human society were created by Me. And, although I am the creator of this system, you should know that I am yet the non-doer, being unchangeable.]

"I have created these..., the four divisions of caste." It is not exactly caste; section, varṇa. So how you can stop? It is natural.

So Bhāgavata recommends, Suta Gosvāmī is addressing, ataḥ pumbhir dvija-śreṣṭhā varṇāśrama-vibhāgaśaḥ. This system of sectional division, this is..., "He is brāhmaṇa, he is kṣatriya, he is vaiśya, he is śūdra, he is brahmacārī, he is householder, he is vānaprastha, he is sannyāsī," or sub-section: "He is potter, he is washerman, he is this and that," so such..., you may divide it or not, this section will be there in every society.

So Bhāgavata says that "You may be situated in any section. It doesn't matter"—either you be a kṣatriya or a brāhmaṇa or a potter or a washerman or whatever you may be, it doesn't matter—"everyone should be satisfied by his occupation."

But how one gets successful by his occupation? He hasn't got to change the occupation. In the material world one has to change his occupation for certain kind of success. Suppose if you are a potter. Now, if you want to become engineer, so you have to change your occupation as potter. But in the spiritual world you haven't got to change your position, and still, you get success, spiritual life. That is the beauty.

You haven't got to change. If somebody says that "Sir, I am potter. How can I be Kṛṣṇa conscious? It requires that one should be a brāhmaṇa, one should be very learned man, Vedānta philosophy, and one must have the sacred thread, and this and that. So I am a potter," "I am a cobbler," "I am a washerman." No. Kṛṣṇa says, "No. You do not require to change."

Caitanya Mahaprabhu also says, "You do not require to change." Kṛṣṇa says that sva-karmaṇā tam abhyarcya. You just try to worship the Supreme Lord by the result of your occupation. Because Kṛṣṇa requires everything. So if you are a potter, you supply pots. If you are florist, you supply flower. If you are carpenter, you work for temple. If you are washerman, then wash clothing of the temple. Temple is the center: Kṛṣṇa. And everyone gets chance to offer his service. Therefore temple worship is very nice.

So this temple should be organized in such a way that we don't require any money. You give your service. That's all. You be engaged in your service. Don't change your service. But you try to serve the..., temple means the Supreme Lord, by your occupational duty.

Śivānanda: In other words, in the correct position that... You might have a community, and then...

Prabhupāda: The community is supposed to be there. The potter is there, the washerman is there, the grocer is there, the milkman is there, everyone is there. So we haven't got to form community.

Śivānanda: No. In the correct position, then, the temple would be the center of the community.

Prabhupāda: Yes. Temple is open for everyone. Let them come and sit down, chant Hare Kṛṣṇa, hear Bhagavad-gītā. We don't say, "Oh, are you potter? No. You are not allowed." We don't say that. "Are you cobbler? Oh, you are not allowed." No. We don't say that. Everyone is welcome. "Come on." And what is the business? Chant Hare Kṛṣṇa. Everyone can do it. And what is the next business? We read some nice philosophical portion from Bhagavad-gītā, Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. Yes. You have got ears.

[shouts:] But the rascals are not coming! That is their rascaldom. Because they will go to hell. We are offering the greatest facility, but they are so rascals, they are not coming. This is a rascaldom civilization. What is difficulty there? You come, sit down, chant Hare Kṛṣṇa, take nice prasādam, hear philosophy, see nice pictures, decorated Deity. What is the difficulty there? But their brain is full with rascaldom.

They will go to cinema, they will go to hotel, they will go to some other thing, but they will not come to temple or church, or any other where these things are being done. This is called Kali-yuga. Kali-yuga means they are so condemned that they don't take facility of the highest benefit. They have been educated, they have been trained in such a way that they don't like this.

But this is their success. Bhāgavata says, saṁsiddhir hari-toṣaṇam [SB 1.2.13].

[O best among the twice-born, it is therefore concluded that the highest perfection one can achieve by discharging the duties prescribed for one's own occupation according to caste divisions and orders of life is to please the Personality of Godhead.]

Ataḥ pumbhir dvija-śreṣṭhā varṇāśrama-vibhāgaśaḥ. Vibhāgaśaḥ means sectional division. "My dear learned brāhmaṇas..." Because Suta Gosvāmī was speaking to very learned assembly of brāhmaṇas Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. Because it is understandable not by ordinary class of men. But they are not disallowed. It depends on the speaker to present very nicely for their understanding. It is not, I mean to say, stopped. Nityam bhāgavata-sevaya [SB 1.2.18].

[By regular attendance in classes on the Bhāgavatam and by rendering of service to the pure devotee, all that is troublesome to the heart is almost completely destroyed, and loving service unto the Personality of Godhead, who is praised with transcendental songs, is established as an irrevocable fact.]

This is the process.

śṛṇvatāṁ sva-kathāḥ kṛṣṇaḥ
hrdy antah-stho hy abhadrani
vidhunoti suhrt satam

[SB 1.2.17]

[Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the Personality of Godhead, who is the Paramātmā [Supersoul] in everyone's heart and the benefactor of the truthful devotee, cleanses desire for material enjoyment from the heart of the devotee who has developed the urge to hear His messages, which are in themselves virtuous when properly heard and chanted.]

If you kindly come and hear about Kṛṣṇa, then Kṛṣṇa will be very much pleased upon you. Anyone. Suppose if somebody is interested with you, he likes your activity, he likes to hear about your qualities, you will be also pleased with him: "Oh, this man is interested with my affairs."

So śṛṇvatāṁ sva-kathāḥ kṛṣṇaḥ. Kṛṣṇa is within your heart. Kṛṣṇa is within and without, because He is all-pervading. It is not that He is simply without or within. He is within and without. That is all-pervading. Akhilātma-bhūtaḥ. And all-pervading does not mean that He is not in Goloka Vṛndāvana. He is there also. Goloka eva nivasaty akhilātma-bhūtaḥ [Bs. 5.37].

[I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, residing in His own realm, Goloka, with Rādhā, resembling His own spiritual figure, the embodiment of the ecstatic potency possessed of the sixty-four artistic activities, in the company of Her confidantes [sakhīs], embodiments of the extensions of Her bodily form, permeated and vitalized by His ever-blissful spiritual rasa.]

Although He is in His abode, Goloka Vṛndāvana, He is everywhere. Just like sun: he is ninety millions miles away from here, situated in sun globe, but he is everywhere. This light now, it is sunlight. So if sun can remain in that way, everywhere, why not the Supreme Personality of Godhead, He also remains everywhere?

So He is within your heart. And when He sees that you are interested in hearing about Him, He becomes sympathetic. He is sympathetic to everyone. Still more sympathetic. So what does He do? Śṛṇvatāṁ sva-kathāḥ kṛṣṇaḥ. Kṛṣṇa, when He sees that one is interested in hearing about Him, then He gives you facility. What is that facility? That facility is, śṛṇvatāṁ sva-kathāḥ kṛṣṇaḥ puṇya-śravaṇa-kīrtanaḥ.

Kṛṣṇa-kathā, talks about Kṛṣṇa, you, either you understand it or not understand it, it doesn't matter. If you simply sit down to receive, give aural reception to such message, you become pious. Immediately. Puṇya-śravaṇa-kīrtanaḥ. You don't understand; simply you talk and discuss and hear, you become pious. Just like fire. You come to the fire, you understand it or not understand, you get warm.

That facility is there. You don't require to understand how fire is produced, what is the chemical or physical constitution. You do it, understand or not understand. Just like you sit down on a car, motorcar. You understand it or not understand it, what is the engineering of the car, but you run on.

Similarly, kṛṣṇa-kathā, the simply..., the simple method, if you kindly come and hear, then you will be pious. That is the first installment. You don't understand or don't follow, but if the injection is there you become pious. Puṇya-śravaṇa-kīrtanaḥ. And if you give little attention, then the result will be hṛdy antaḥ-stho hy abhadrāṇi: all undesirable things that is accumulated within your heart, that will be cleared. Kṛṣṇa will help you.

Śivānanda: Now, um, supposedly, the false ego and...

Prabhupāda: What is the false ego and..., now you have to hear. That's all.

Śivānanda: No, I mean the attention itself, this is material, very, very subtle, but...

Prabhupāda: Yes. If you give attention, it is better. Even if you don't give attention—simply hear—that will also have some effect.

Śivānanda: Now, can... We should be able to control our attention, then, to direct our attention to where...

Prabhupāda: Then what is the use of sitting if you don't control your attention? Then you are simply wasting time. Why do you come? That is understood. When you come to hear, that means you must hear with attention. But this is a concession, that even if you don't hear with attention, you become purified. But if you do it, it is very nice. You make progress. You get the result very quickly.

So success of life is to please Kṛṣṇa, or the Supreme Lord, by one's occupational duty. Ataḥ pumbhir dvija-śreṣṭhā varṇāśrama-vibhāgaśaḥ, svanuṣṭhitena dharmena... Svanuṣṭhitena dharmena saṁsiddhir hari-toṣaṇam [SB 1.2.13].

[O best among the twice-born, it is therefore concluded that the highest perfection one can achieve by discharging the duties prescribed for one's own occupation according to caste divisions and orders of life is to please the Personality of Godhead.]

One should try to satisfy the Absolute Truth, Personality of Godhead. And Lord Caitanya also recommends that "You remain in your occupation. That doesn't matter. But you submissively try to hear."

So we are giving this chance to the people: "Please come and hear." But they are not prepared even for that thing. The age is so strong, the Kali-yuga, that it will dictate, māyā will dictate, "Why you go there? What is there?" But actually, those who have come to us, those who are following, they are so much changed. That is a fact. They are seeing. They are hearing, "It will be." They are seeing, "It is." Still, they are not interested.

Just like a class of men, they see that a person who has committed theft is arrested by police, and he is hearing that "If you commit theft, then you will be sinful or you will be caught by the laws of the state." So seeing and hearing, still he is committing theft. Why? By experience, practical experience, he is seeing that "Here is a man, committed theft. He is punished. He is going to be arrested by the police."

And he has heard also that if somebody commits theft, he will be punished. So what do you want? Two things are required, dekha soṇa[?], seeing and hearing, for gaining knowledge. So he has got knowledge by seeing and hearing, but still... That means the heart is not clear. So this thing will be helpful for clearing the heart. Śṛṇvatāṁ sva-kathāḥ kṛṣṇaḥ puṇya-śravaṇa-kīrtanaḥ [SB 1.2.17].

[Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the Personality of Godhead, who is the Paramātmā [Supersoul] in everyone's heart and the benefactor of the truthful devotee, cleanses desire for material enjoyment from the heart of the devotee who has developed the urge to hear His messages, which are in themselves virtuous when properly heard and chanted.]

Simply by legal obligation one cannot be purified. You may enact thousands of rules and regulation and laws—you cannot purify the heart of the people. Here is the process to purify the heart of the people. Therefore they should be taken advantage of. Simply by saying that "If you do this, then you'll be punished," nobody cares for that.

Just like a child. The parents daily says, "My dear boy, don't do this. This is mischievous." But he does. Just like a dog, animal. Because the heart is not purified. The knowledge is not there. So this is the process for purifying the heart. 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.’]

This is the process. So one should take advantage of this process, how to purify the mind, how to purify the heart. Then you will be a perfect personality, perfect man. Śṛṇvatāṁ sva-kathāḥ kṛṣṇaḥ. So we don't say that "You change your profession, you change your position or occupation." No. "Please come and hear. Please... If you don't chant, please hear. That hearing process also will cure you." Śravaṇam kīrtanam.

So people should come to our temple and hear this chanting, this... We are not taxing. We are not asking any... If you give some contribution, there is temple and management, there is expenditure, heavy expenditure, in this country. If you so kind... It is very kind of you. Even if you do not pay, you don't like, please come. Please come and hear. Please bring your friends if you are really friend. So it is very nice thing. Sthāne sthitaḥ śruti-gatāṁ tanu-vāṅ-manobhir. You remain what you are. We don't say that you change, but you hear. Śruti-gatāṁ.

Śruti means this ear. God has given you this nice thing. You just inject this transcendental vibration through this ear. And when you will..., you purify yourself, then you'll know how to make your life successful by your occupation. Sva-karmaṇā tam abhyarcya saṁsiddhiṁ labhate param. Saṁsiddhi. Saṁsiddhi means perfection.

So even fifty years... Not fifty; about sixty years before, in our childhood, or more than, sixty-five years before, when we were five, six years old, this system of hearing in the evening, in every village there was current. And my maternal uncle's house was in the suburb of Calcutta. So in our childhood, when we used to go to our maternal uncle's house, all the ladies and members of the house would go to a place where Bhagavata, Bhagavad-gītā, is being discussed. They will sit down. All the members of the neighboring people, they will come, very big crowd, and they will hear, and whatever they can pay, they will pay. And with that impression, at nine o'clock or ten o'clock, they will go to bed. Very nice arrangement.

Usually the meeting was taking place after night, dinner, you see? Say, about at nine o'clock. And from nine to ten, eleven, the discussion would go on, and then the members dispersed and go to their respective home. We have seen. And all the ladies, whole road, they were discussing, "The priest told me..." They discussed very seriously to understand. So they don't require any education. Simply by hearing they become advanced. This is recommended. Śṛṇvatāṁ sva-kathāḥ... Śṛṇvatāṁ. Just try to hear, hear, hear. Very nice process.

So we are inviting people. We have got so much big space. Unfortunately, nobody is coming to hear. Mr. Khanvar? Why they do not come?

Mr. Khanvar: I don't know.

Prabhupāda: [laughs] No, can you guess any reason?

Mr. Khanvar: Many people don't know about temple. Many people are not aware of the temple.

Prabhupāda: Well, these are..., so many people came on that day. At least they know. They have no interest. That is the thing. That this life is meant for perfection in self-realization, or Kṛṣṇa consciousness, their dull brain does not allow to understand this fact. Therefore I was explaining last night, su-medhasaḥ, good brain substance. So people are becoming dull, and talking all nonsense. They are interested with so many nonsense things. Just like yesterday that gentleman came. You were present?

Devotee: Yes.

Prabhupāda: Oh, he was talking that on zero some great svāmī spoke four hours. And he was very proud that on zero one can speak throughout his whole life. Now, I did not... [laughs] But if you can speak on some subject matter for four hours, how it is zero? Just see the contradiction. Gaurasundara, you were present when he was speaking? You heard? If I can speak something on a subject matter, is that subject matter zero?

Zero means śūnya. Śūnya means "nothing." So how you can speak on nothing? If you can speak on nothing, then nothing is no more nothing; it is something. Just see. But he was so proud: "Oh, he spoke on zero for four hours." I did not contradict, because he is newcomer, but I talked on other subject. But this is the position.

Suppose you can talk on zero for four hours. Then either you waste your time... Because after all, it is zero. The result is zero. Just like you add one million zeros. So what is the value? Zero. So who is a fool that knowing that one million zeros makes zero, why shall I waste my time making so many zeros? So either he is a fool, or if zero has so much substance to speak, then how it is zero? If zero has so much value that one can speak on it for hours and hours together, then how it is zero?

So people do not understand things very properly. They're so dull that he was eulogizing the man who spoke on zero for four hours. Yes. That is the system: if you hear a man talking nonsense and people will give cla... Oh! And if asking what you have understood, "Oh! it is very difficult to explain." Then why you are wasting time, if you cannot express, if you do not understand? Simply people wants jugglery of words. They don't want substance. They don't want substance. That is the difficulty in the mod..., in the present age. Sva-karmaṇā tam abhyarcya saṁsiddhiṁ labhate param [Bg. 18.46].

[By worship of the Lord, who is the source of all beings and who is all-pervading, man can, in the performance of his own duty, attain perfection.]

Svanuṣṭhitasya dharmasya saṁsiddhir hari-toṣaṇam

[SB 1.2.13].

[O best among the twice-born, it is therefore concluded that the highest perfection one can achieve by discharging the duties prescribed for one's own occupation according to caste divisions and orders of life is to please the Personality of Godhead.]

So you should learn this nice, simple fact, that whether by your work Kṛṣṇa, or the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is being satisfied. Just like a student, how he is prosecuting his studies will be tested at the examination how he can satisfy the examiner. Similarly, whatever we may do, we have to enquire or to understand whether by that work the Supreme Personality of Godhead is satisfied. Unfortunately, they do not believe in God, or if they had some ideas of God... Now they say God is dead. So they do not think that it is necessary to please God. That is the difficulty.

Śivānanda: In other words, if we have a decision to make, we should make the decision only in terms of how it's going to affect my service to Kṛṣṇa.

Prabhupāda: Hmm?

Śivānanda: In other words, you don't necessarily make snap decisions. I mean they're probably very... They can consider it from all different points of view.

Prabhupāda: It is not difficult.

Śivānanda: No. But I mean you have to consider all the different means and figure out how you're going to serve Kṛṣṇa the best way.

Prabhupāda: Yes. Kṛṣṇa can be served by his own occupation, as I described just now. Or whatever you may be. You may be a potter, you may be a florist, you may be... Whatever you may be, but you can satisfy Kṛṣṇa by His work..., by your work. You do not require to qualify yourself with some specific qualification. Whatever qualification you have got, you have to dovetail it under the direction of expert spiritual master, how you can serve. That's all.

Pradyumna: What does that "expert" mean in the list of qualifications for a devotee? In the list of qualifications of a devotee there is one qualification, "expert."

Prabhupāda: Yes.

Pradyumna: What does that mean in relation to the occupation?

Prabhupāda: Expert means whatever he is doing, he must do it very nicely That's all. Suppose you are sweeping this room. You can do it very nicely, to your best knowledge. That is expert. The people will say, "Oh, you have very nicely done." Any work you do, do it very nicely. That is expert. Don't do it haphazardly. To your best talent, to your best capacity, try to finish it very nicely, whatever it may be.

You are entrusted with some work. Do it nicely. That is expert. If you think that you are unable to do that work, then whatever work you can do, you take. But do it nicely. That is expert. Don't imitate. "Oh, I have no capacity to work in that way, but I want to imitate. Oh, he is doing that. I shall do that." Don't do that. That is not expert. You take up what you can do very nicely and do it nicely.

We have so many work. Kṛṣṇa is not that He is static. He is dynamic force. Just like Arjuna, he was not a Vedāntist, he was not a brāhmaṇa, he was not a sannyāsī. He was householder. He was military man. But he knew his business, how to do it nicely. So you do your business nicely. That is expert. And when it is dovetailed in Kṛṣṇa, there is no gradation that "This business is better" and "That business is lower," because everything is for Kṛṣṇa. So that business becomes Kṛṣṇa. Do it nicely and Kṛṣṇa is satisfied. And that is your success. Avyāpare suvyaparam yo naraḥ kartum icchati, sa-mulo hanyate 'khila pārthiva vānaraḥ. Expert.

There is a very nice story in Sanskrit, a monkey. A monkey... You might have some experience, that sawmen, who cut wood? Sawmen. So a sawman was cutting wood by the saw. So at the end of business it was half cut, so he pulled down a, I mean to say, a plug, so that next day he will come and he'll again begin sawing. So went away. So one monkey came. So monkey sat down there and began to pull on the plug, because monkey's business is simply mischievous. So he did not know that his plug and some portion of his thigh was within the hole, and when he took out this plug it was, [claps] I mean to say, clipped, and he could not get out and died.

So the instruction is that... 'Khila pārthiva vānaraḥ, avyāpare suvyaparam. Avyāpara means a occupation, an occupation which is not fit for you. That is avyāpara. Avyāpara-suvyaparam. And one occupation which is not exactly fitting you, you do not know how to do it, so avyāpare suvyaparam yo kartu... If one wants to act in a business in which he is unable to do, then he is killed just like this fool monkey. Avyāpare suvyaparam yo naraḥ kartum icchati, sa-mulo hanyate. That foolish person is killed just like this monkey. The monkey's business was not to imitate the sawman, but he wanted to imitate. The result was that he was killed.

So that is not expertness. Expertness is you just try to do which is easily performed by you. You don't accept anything heavy task, because Kṛṣṇa does not want that you have to do this heavy task. Whatever you know, you just apply it. You dovetail it in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Kṛṣṇa does not say that you have to become like this, like that, like that, then you can serve Him. Does not say. Just like this cow. Just see. What does it know? Is an animal. You see? But the calf knows to brush his head and tongue like this, in love. Just see. It is doing, and Kṛṣṇa accepting, "Yes." That is expert.

First of all find out what is easily done by you. Don't take anything which is not easily done by you. You find out what is your occupation, what you can very nicely and easily perform, and do it for Kṛṣṇa. That's all. Is that clear? Expert? This is expert. Expert does not mean that I do not know how to drive motorcar, and I will have to imitate somebody, "Oh, I shall become driver." Why?

If you do not know driving, why should you attempt driving? Whatever you know, you just try it, that business, and try to satisfy Kṛṣṇa. If you know driving, that's all right. But don't take... My Guru Mahārāja explained that you haven't got to learn anything extra for Kṛṣṇa's service. Whatever you know, you just apply it in Kṛṣṇa's service. Then you become successful.

Because our time is very short. We do not know when I am going to die. As soon as I am out of this body, I am completely under the grip of nature, and I do not know what kind of body I am getting next. Of course, Kṛṣṇa assures that His devotee will never be vanquished. He will get good body. But I do not know what kind of body I am going to... Therefore before finishing this body I will have to develop Kṛṣṇa consciousness very nicely. That is my success. Labdhvā sudurlabham idaṁ bahu-sambhavānte [SB 11.9.29].

[After many, many births and deaths one achieves the rare human form of life, which, although temporary, affords one the opportunity to attain the highest perfection. Thus a sober human being should quickly endeavor for the ultimate perfection of life as long as his body, which is always subject to death, has not fallen down and died. After all, sense gratification is available even in the most abominable species of life, whereas Kṛṣṇa consciousness is possible only for a human being.]

After many, many of evolutionary process, I have got this nice human form of body in America or India, in civilized nation or rich family; I have no economic problem. That's all right.

So it is to be understood they are simply wasting. Oh, how miserable it is. They get the opportunity, and they are simply wasting for sense gratification just like cats and dogs. Whole day working, whole day laboring. Why? Sense gratification. That is also in the hog society. Eating stool, living in nasty place, and they have got very good facility for sex. Is that the end of life?

So Bhāgavata says, nāyaṁ deho deha-bhājaṁ nṛloke kāṣṭān kāmān arhate viḍ-bhujāṁ ye [SB 5.5.1].

[Lord Ṛṣabhadeva told His sons: My dear boys, of all the living entities who have accepted material bodies in this world, one who has been awarded this human form should not work hard day and night simply for sense gratification, which is available even for dogs and hogs that eat stool. One should engage in penance and austerity to attain the divine position of devotional service. By such activity, one's heart is purified, and when one attains this position, he attains eternal, blissful life, which is transcendental to material happiness and which continues forever.]

You are working so hard, and the end should not be simply sense gratification. Sense gratification you can get in hog society, dog society, without any, I mean to say, expert qualification. That is... Viṣayaḥ khalu sarvataḥ syāt. Viṣaya means this sense gratificatory business, you will have in any life—in bird's life, in dog's life, in cat's life. So do you think that human life is also meant for that purpose? Then what is the meaning of civilization? Is that civilization? If the end of life is the same, just like cats and dogs, is it civilization?

They do not know what is civilization. They have forgotten. They think that eating very nicely in a palatable dish, that is civilization. But eating is eating. And if you eat... If you are hungry, anything satisfies you. That is eating. Finish. You can eat. Sleeping: when you are fast asleep, you do not know whether you are on the nice building in a nice apartment. You are dreaming that you are thrown into the ocean. Sleeping. So simply for nice arrangement for sleeping, is that civilization? [break]

[indistinct]. At least, if one understands that "This is my business. My business is not to work hard and end it by sense gratification. This is not my business." That is saṁsiddhi. That is success. If at least one understands this aim of life, even little understands, he gets next human body. That is guaranteed. At least, he is not going to get any cats' and dogs' body. That is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā.

Śucīnāṁ śrīmatāṁ gehe yoga-bhraṣṭo 'bhijāyate

[The unsuccessful yogī, after many, many years of enjoyment on the planets of the pious living entities, is born into a family of righteous people, or into a family of rich aristocracy.]

When Arjuna inquired that if a man cannot execute this yoga system, bhakti-yoga system, Kṛṣṇa consciousness, if it is half finished or one-fourth finished, or ten percent finished, not complete finished, then what is the result? He is good for nothing? No. Kṛṣṇa says, "No." Svalpam apy asya dharmasya trāyate mahato bhayāt. Even a little understood, it can save him from the greatest danger.

And śucīnāṁ śrīmatāṁ gehe yoga-bhraṣṭo sanjayate [Bg. 6.41]. If one is not successful in this life, then he is given another chance next life. Where? Śucīnāṁ: in nice, I mean, transcendentalist, brāhmaṇa or Vaiṣṇava devotee or pious man, in his family. Or less than, if he is less qualified, then he is given a chance to get his birth in a rich family. Both the families. In rich family he has no economic problem. And in a pious family he gets direct opportunity to, I mean to say, advance his past Kṛṣṇa consciousness again. So in these two families he gets another chance.

But unfortunately, those who are born in rich family, they immediately give up all principles of Kṛṣṇa consciousness. "Oh, I have got so much money without any labor. Let me enjoy." This is māyā. He does not think... Because he has no education that "You have got this opportunity that you have no economic problem. Take this opportunity for advancing in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Engage your full time to become a devotee." Nobody educates him. The poor boy or poor fellow is misguided. He gets his friend, "Oh you have got so much money. Let us enjoy." Eat, drink, be merry and enjoy. So he becomes again cats and dogs.

Pradyumna: What is that type of pleasure that is material pleasure, that a person feels engaged in material pursuit. He feel some kind of pleasure. It's not very much pleasure, but it's some pleasure. What is that pleasure made of? Because if he is enjoying sense gratification...

Prabhupāda: That is pleasure. That is material pleasure. Material pleasure means sex pleasure. That's all. The end of material pleasure, the topmost material pleasure, is sex pleasure. So all these materialists, they are trying to get pleasure from the sex life—in this way, that way, that way, that way, that way. That's all. Because they have no other information.

Material pleasure means sex pleasure. Sex pleasure, tongue pleasure. They have manufactured so many things. That gentleman was sitting and asking, "Can I smoke?" The tongue is agitating for... "Please, please give me one cigarette. One cigarette." He became disturbed. And we said, "No. You cannot smoke." This is material pleasure. You train up your senses in such a way that it becomes addicted. It cannot get out of the entanglement.

So this Kṛṣṇa consciousness will save you. Yan maithunādi-gṛhamedhi-sukhaṁ hi tuccham [SB 7.9.45].

[Sex life is compared to the rubbing of two hands to relieve an itch. Gṛhamedhis, so-called gṛhasthas who have no spiritual knowledge, think that this itching is the greatest platform of happiness, although actually it is a source of distress. The kṛpaṇas, the fools who are just the opposite of brāhmaṇas, are not satisfied by repeated sensuous enjoyment. Those who are dhīra, however, who are sober and who tolerate this itching, are not subjected to the sufferings of fools and rascals.]

They are all explained in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. The material pleasure means sexual intercourse. That's all. That is the sum and substance of pleasure. That's all. You'll find everywhere two: one male and female, one male and female, male and female. Either legitimate or illegitimate. Either human being or animal or birds or beast, that male and female, male and female, male and female. This is material pleasure. And unless one is strongly equipped in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, it is not possible to give up. That is the test. It is not possible.

Therefore Kṛṣṇa is Madana-mohana. He can captivate even the Cupid. This is Cupid's business, attraction of male and female. And when that Kṛṣṇa attracts you, you forget this Cupid attraction. Therefore He is known as Madana-mohana.

jayatāṁ suratau paṅgor
mama manda-mater gatī

[Cc. Ādi 1.15]

[Glory to the all-merciful Rādhā and Madana-mohana! I am lame and ill advised, yet They are my directors, and Their lotus feet are everything to me.]

This is the beginning.

Śivānanda: When do we become attracted? When do we begin to become attracted?

Prabhupāda: Forget that. You are attracted. That you take account of. When you become diseased, that is useless. You are diseased. Take medicine. There is no necessity of asking when you became diseased. You are diseased. Take medicine. That's all. What is the use of tracing the history? Everything has his history, that's all right. But my immediate necessity is that "I am diseased. I want to be cured. Give me some medicine."

But there is history. The history is this. Just like disease. You have fallen victim of disease. That means you have given chance to the infection. That's all. That is the sum and substance of disease. You are infected with some disease. That means you have given chance for that infection.

There was a story in a medical journal, "Typhoid Mary." Typhoid Mary... One girl, whenever she was present everyone was being infected with typhoid. Then she was examined, that she is full of typhoid germs. But she was immune. But she infected wherever she went. The medical journal reported. So we should be careful not being infected. And that how you can become free from infection? These four rules: "Don't have this, don't have this, don't have this, don't have this."

Then you are free from infection. So you should be careful from being infected. There is no use tracing out the history where you became infected. You should not be infected. That should be your business. And as you are now infected, you try to avoid the causes of infection and take the medicine; you become cured.

Some prasādam? So Annapurna, you have got some news?

Annapurna: I got a letter from my father. I have a letter from my father.

Prabhupāda: So is that all right?

Annapurna: Yes.

Prabhupāda: So what is our next program? [chuckles] That letter is encouraging?

Annapurna: Yes.

Prabhupāda: That's all right.

[pause] So on behalf of Kṛṣṇa we have to canvass with folded hands and with all humility, "Please come to our temple and hear." He sādhavā sakalam eva vihāya dūrād caitanya-candra-caraṇe kurutānurāgam [Caitanya-candrāmṛta].

[Taking a straw between my teeth and falling at your feet a hundred times, I humbly submit, "O great personality, please give up all mundane knowledge that you have learned and just submit yourself at the lotus feet of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu."]

All right. [pause]

Devotee: This rule, not to gamble, no gambling...

Prabhupāda: Huh?

Devotee: This rule, "No gambling," does this also include speculation...

Prabhupāda: Yes.

Devotee: ...various types?

Prabhupāda: Speculation is gambling.

Pradyumna: Swāmījī? I'm reading about. A book called [indistinct] a book by Swami Vivekananda. Some letters in the back I was looking at...

Prabhupāda: Vivekananda's books we have nothing to do.

Pradyumna: I was just...

Prabhupāda: Forget him. It is all nonsense.

Pradyumna: I wasn't looking at his philosophy; I was just looking at his technique for his... He was in America first, and then he wished also to go to Europe. Anyway, he had one man... He just had a rich benefactor, and he went on a six weeks' tour, France, England, Germany, Switzerland, all around and then back. That's how he did most of his touring. He had one or two influential people, and then he did everything just like that. And all lectures were arranged in societies.

Prabhupāda: So you can arrange like that. Can you?

Pradyumna: I was thinking if there would be in the Royal Asiatic Society in London. I think Ṭhākura Bhaktivinoda was a member of that also? Is that the same one?

Prabhupāda: Where is Ṭhākura Bhaktivinoda now?

Pradyumna: No, but there would be some people there, to open correspondence with them, and they might be interested in sponsoring you.

Prabhupāda: It is not... It is more difficult.[?]

[Prabhupāda is taking prasādam]

[pause] Is there anything about Kṛṣṇa in Vivekananda's speech?

Pradyumna: No, I wasn't reading his speeches. Just, I wanted to see how he worked things. I know he's a rascal. I can see it.

Prabhupāda: So you can give me a little milk and finish business.

[pause] [devotees offer obeisances]

All glories to the assembled devotees.

Devotees: All glories to Guru and Gaurāṅga!

Prabhupāda: Yes. All glories to you, because you are interested in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Certainly it is glorious. Greatest science. Please try to understand it very nicely; you will be all happy. That is my request.

Śivānanda: What is this picture about its Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa and the fire bird [indistinct].

Prabhupāda: What is this? Some imagination. Some imagination.

Śivānanda: Imagination?

Prabhupāda: All cheating. [end]