Bhagavad-gītā 13.1–2 , Bombay , 1973-09-24

Prabhupāda: "Nature, the Enjoyer and Consciousness." This is the Thirteenth Chapter of Bhagavad-gītā. The Lord is describing what is this material nature, who is the enjoyer of this material nature and what is the consciousness.

We are preaching about Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Now, in this chapter Kṛṣṇa Himself is describing what is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Arjuna uvāca, Arjuna inquired:

prakṛtiṁ puruṣaṁ caiva
kṣetraṁ kṣetrajñam eva ca
etad veditum icchāmi
jñānaṁ jñeyaṁ ca keśava

[Bg. 13.1]

Kṛṣṇa is addressed here as Keśava, "the killer of the Keśi asura." You know, in Vṛndāvana, there is Keśi-ghāṭa. That Keśi-ghāṭa is famous because Kṛṣṇa killed one asura of the name Keśi. He appeared in Vṛndāvana as a ferocious horse, and Kṛṣṇa killed him. Since then, His name is Keśava. Kṛṣṇa has got many names according to His activities. He killed the demon Madhu, therefore His name is Madhusūdana. He killed the demon Kaṁsa, therefore His name is Kaṁsāri[?]. There are many names. Some of the names are in relationship with His devotees, and some of the names are there in relationship with the demons.

There are two kinds of men = the devotees and the demons. Daiva āsura eva ca.

dvau bhūta-sargau loke
daiva āsura eva ca
viṣṇu-bhakto bhaved daiva
āsuras tad viparyayaḥ

Throughout the universe there are two classes of men. One is called devatā and the other is called asura. Devata means visnu-bhakto bhaved daivaḥ. Those who are devotees of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is known as Viṣṇu... Viṣṇu has got... Sahasra viṣṇu names there are. Original is Viṣṇu. So those who are devotees of the Lord, they are called Vaiṣṇava or devatā, and those who are not devotees of Viṣṇu may be devotees of other demigods, but they are called the demons, or the asuras. There are many instances in the śāstra. There were Hiraṇyakaśipu, who was a devotee of Lord Brahmā. Of course, the asuras are never devotees. Sometimes they worship the demigods for getting some material profit. Kāṅkṣantaḥ karmaṇāṁ siddhiṁ yajanta iha devatāḥ [Bg. 4.12]. That is said in the Bhagavad-gītā. Kāṅkṣantaḥ karmaṇāṁ siddhim.

Here, everyone is engaged in fruitive activities, karma---karma in this life and karma in the next life also. So performing great sacrifices, giving in charity, pious activities, they are also karma. They are meant for giving opportunity in the next life, a position in the heavenly planet or similar other higher planetary system where the standard of living is very, very comfortable, thousands and thousands times better than the standard of life in this planet. But that is also karma. Kāṅkṣantaḥ karmaṇāṁ siddhim yajanta iha devatāḥ.

So people, they want to enjoy life within this material world, but actually there is no enjoyment in the material world. Because, Kṛṣṇa says, there is birth, there is death, there is old age and there is disease. So where is your happiness? After all, you have to die. Suppose I make very good arrangement, very nice house, very nice bank balance, very nice wife, children, everything, but death can come at any moment. Then where is your perfection? If after so much hard labor everything is ready for enjoyment, but I am called by Yamarāja... Mṛtyuḥ sarva-haraś cāham [Bg. 10.34]. Death takes away everything. Therefore you cannot say the arrangement you made for happy life is perfect. That is not perfect.

But foolish people, they do not know what is perfection. They simply want superficial, temporary happiness, never mind what will happen next life or few years after. Just like children = they want to play without caring for future life. But it is the duty of the guardians to engage them in education so that in future they may be happy. Similarly, all the great sages, saintly person, just like Vyāsadeva, Nārada, Devala, Asita, many, many great saintly persons, sages... Even Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, comes to give us instruction so that we can become eternally happy.

Unfortunately, in this age, which is called Kali-yuga, the people are so low grade that they do not like to hear all these instruction of great sages, saintly person or even of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. That is the defect of this age. Therefore in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam it is said mandaḥ. Mandaḥ means slow, at the same time, very bad.

mandāḥ sumanda-matayo
manda-bhāgyā hy upadrutāḥ
prāyeṇālpāyuṣaḥ sabhya
kalāv asmin yuge janāḥ

In this age people are short-living. Their duration of life is very, very short, so much so that at the end of this age the duration of life will come down to twenty years to thirty years. A man of twenty-five years will be considered as very old man. These are stated in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. And there will be scarcity of food. On account of this scarcity of food, people will not grow very healthy. It is already happening. Rice is selling seven rupees' kilo, nine rupees' kilo. How a poor man will eat? So the more the Kali-yuga will advance... Now we are getting ten rupees' or twelve rupees' or nine rupees' kilo rice, but rice will not be available at all. That is also stated in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. Because people are becoming godless, naturally the material nature will put them into suffering. That is the laws of nature. Daivī hy eṣā guṇamayī mama māyā duratyayā [Bg. 7.14].

Just like if you become criminal, the police department is there. The police department will give you pains, chastisement. Similarly, the more we become godless, the more we become careless to fulfill the mission of human life, the more nature will give us trouble. There will be no rain. Anāvṛṣṭi. Anāvṛṣṭi and durbhikṣa, scarcity of foodstuff, and taxation by the government. These are the symptoms of Kali-yuga mentioned in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. And people will become so much harassed by these three things that they will voluntarily give up their hearth and home and go to the forest. Therefore those who are actually intelligent, they should not neglect this movement, Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. It is the greatest welfare movement for the whole human society to make people God conscious, Kṛṣṇa conscious, without which there will be so many troubles. It is already there.

So everyone is trying to enjoy the prakṛti, the material nature. Therefore the question is prakṛtiṁ puruṣaṁ caiva kṣetraṁ kṣetrajñaṁ eva ca. This is material nature, and anyone who is trying to enjoy this material nature, he is called puruṣa. Purusa means enjoyer, and prakṛti means enjoyed. Just like in ordinary life we see a man is supposed to be enjoyer and the woman is supposed to be enjoyed; similarly, prakṛti is feminine gender and puruṣa is masculine gender. Anyone who is trying to enjoy, he is puruṣa. It doesn't matter, outwardly he's dressed as man or women; if he has got the desire to enjoy, that is called puruṣa. And his object that is enjoyed, that is called prakṛti.

So Arjuna is asking this question, prakṛtiṁ puruṣaṁ caiva: "Kindly give me instruction about this prakṛti and puruṣa." Kṣetra. Kṣetra means the field of activity, and kṣetrajña. Kṣetrajña means one who knows, "This is my field." Just like the cultivator, he cultivates the land. From government there is demarcation of the land. The cultivator knows, "This is my portion of land." Similarly, every one of us, we are cultivating and we are given a field. This is the body. The spirit soul is the owner of the body, or the occupier of the body. Actually, he's not the owner. That will be explained by Kṛṣṇa. Idaṁ śarīraṁ kaunteya kṣetram ity abhidhīyate [Bg. 13.2] = "This body, My dear Arjuna, is called kṣetra." Kṣetra means the field of activities.

I am a human being. Because I have got this body, I am acting in a different way than the cats and dogs, because he has got a different type of body. His field of activities is different; my field of activity is different. So according to the body, we are acting. Idaṁ śarīraṁ kṣetram. And there are 8,400,000 types of body. Jalajā nava lakṣāṇi sthavarā lakṣa-viṁśati kṛmayo rudra-saṅkhyakaḥ [Padma Purāṇa]. Not one type of body. Nine hundred thousand forms of body in the water, jalajā nava-lakṣāṇi.

The botanist or the expert scientist, they cannot say how many forms of lives are there in the water. Sthavarā lakṣa-viṁśati. The botanist there are, but they do not know how many forms of vegetable, trees and plants are there. But in the śāstra it is said, sthavarā lakṣa-viṁśati: "Two million types of bodies, trees, plants, grass. Two millions." Everything is specifically mentioned. In this way, there are insects also, kṛmayo rudra-saṅkhyakaḥ. There are birds, pakṣiṇāṁ daśa-lakṣaṇam, ten hundred thousand, one million types of birds.

Then human being, manuṣyāḥ catur-lakṣāṇi, only four hundred thousand forms of human life, of which the civilized form of life, especially those who are born in India... To take birth in India, Bhārata-varsa, is a great fortune. Unfortunately, we are neglecting this facility given by nature. Because in India there were so many saintly persons, so many great sages... Even Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, He descended on this country, India, Bhārata-varsa. There were kings like Mahārāja Bharata. There were kings like Mahārāja Ikṣvāku. There was king like Mahārāja Yudhisthira, Parīkṣit---so many. Unfortunately, we are neglecting our own culture. We are now imitating how to become technologist. This is the position of India. Nobody is interested to take this culture of Kṛṣṇa consciousness seriously.

But in the Western countries, where they have tasted very well the fruits of material advancement of life... Therefore the young men there, they are not very much interested to live like their fathers and forefathers. They are taking very much interest in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. So in India they have come, that "Material happiness is not all." That is required = to make the best use of a bad bargain. But our ultimate goal of life is spiritual realization. The Bhagavad-gītā is there. So many other śāstras are there, but Bhagavad-gītā is the beginning of spiritual life, A-B-C-D. So even if we do not learn the A-B-C-D of spiritual life, how our life will be successful in the mission?

So our only aim is to spread this Kṛṣṇa consciousness, spiritual life, all over the world. We have got more than a hundred temples all over the world, but we wanted one also in Bombay. Therefore we took this land. It was not meant for making any business. Even if we had this land after paying so much money, we are not going to make any profit out of it. The money will be blocked[?]. But if we want to have it, it is for the reason that the people of Bombay may take interest in Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, so that their life may become successful.

So I'll remain here for a few days. I'll come here in the evening. If you like, you can come also and hear from Bhagavad-gītā, and we shall be very happy. Thank you very much. Hare Kṛṣṇa.

Devotees: All glories to Śrīla Prabhupāda. [end]