Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 6.1.43 , Los Angeles , 1975-07-24

Nitāi: "The candidates for punishment are those who are confirmed by these many witnesses to have deviated from the prescribed regulative duties. Everyone engaged in fruitive activities is suitable to be subjected to punishment according to his different sinful activities."


etair adharmo vijñātaḥ
sthānaṁ daṇḍasya yujyate
sarve karmānurodhena
daṇḍam arhanti kāriṇaḥ

So we have discussed about the witnesses last..., yesterday. You cannot conceal anything from the eyes of God. That is not possible. In the Bhagavad-gītā it is said, sarvato pāṇi-pādas tam. God has His eyes, heads, legs, hands everywhere. Therefore He is all-pervasive. So just like government has got vigilance---you are running on the road; there is vigilance---similarly, everyone within this material world, either in this planet or lower planetary system or higher planetary system, they are daṇḍam arhanti.

Everyone is deserving to be punished, beginning from Lord Brahmā down to the ant, every living entity. Daṇḍam arhanti. And the final daṇḍam... Daṇḍa means punishment. The final daṇḍa is death. Everywhere, anywhere you go within this universe, planetary system... Ūrdhvaṁ gacchanti sattva-sthāḥ: "Those who are in the modes of goodness, they are elevated to the higher planetary system." And madhye tiṣṭhanti rājasāḥ: "Those who are under the spell of passion, they keep within the middle planetary system." And those who are most abominable, they are given to the lower planetary systems. Ūrdhvaṁ gacchanti sattva-sthā madhye tiṣṭhanti rājasāḥ, jaghanya-guṇa-vṛtti-sthāḥ [Bg. 14.18]. Jaghanya means very abominable guṇa, in the darkest region of ignorance. They are put into the lower planetary system, animal. And there are 8,400,000 different forms of life, and they are distributed all over the universe. Don't think that here only there are living entities and all other planets are vacant. This is nonsense. Everywhere there is living entity. Therefore it is said in the Bhagavad..., sarva-gaḥ. The living entity is everywhere. You can go anywhere. You can go to the higher planetary system, you can go to the lower planetary system, and you can go to the kingdom of God also, in the spiritual world. Therefore the living entity's another name is sarva-gaḥ: he can go anywhere. If you like, you go to hell. If you like, you go to heaven. If you like, you go to God. If you like, you become animal. If you like, you can become demigod. Everything, fully. That little independence is there. As you like, Kṛṣṇa will give you facility.

Īśvaraḥ sarva-bhūtānāṁ hṛd-deśe arjuna tiṣṭhati [Bg. 18.61] = "My dear Arjuna, the Lord is situated in everyone's heart." Why He is situated there? Because He is the suhṛdaṁ sarva-bhūtānām [Bg. 5.29]. We are sons of God. He is very sorry that unnecessarily we are wandering within this universe and suffering in different types of bodies, and this is going on. So īśvara, He is very well-wisher, friend. He is simply trying to turn His face towards you. That's it. Īśvaraḥ sarva-bhūtānām [Bg. 18.61]. He has given little freedom, so do whatever you like. But He is simply taking the chance, "When this rascal will turn towards Me?" That is His business. That is stated in the Vedic śāstra, that two birds are sitting in the same tree. One is eating the fruit, and the other is simple witnessing. So the eating bird is the jīvātmā, individual soul, and the witness bird is God, Paramātmā.

So He is giving us the facility. Īśvaraḥ sarva-bhūtānāṁ hṛd-deśe arjuna ti..., bhrāmayan sarva-bhūtāni [Bg. 18.61]. You cannot, out of your own power, you can go to the higher planetary, lower planetary, anywhere. No. That is to be sanctioned by God. Bhrāmayan. I want to go here, there. He will give me facility. And what is the process? Now, yantra, a machine. Just like you have got the machine, aeroplane, you go from here to there, similarly, this is also a yantra, this is also a machine. The difference is that this is God-made machine or... Yes, everything is God-made, and your machine is man-made. Here the machine is growing automatically, and your machine, each and every machine you have to manufacture in the factory. That is the difference. Both of them are machine, but this machine is God-made, and the other machine is man-made.

So some atheist old man, he challenged me that "Why you are thinking of God? This body is just like a clock. You wind it and it will go on." That's all right. But here a clock machine is there. It can produce other clock. But your clock cannot do that. That is the difference. Here, God-made machine is so nice and perfect that He creates one male and one female, and unlimited machine is coming out, so much so that you, being disgusted, you kill some of the machine. And they are trying to manufacture another machine in the laboratory, in the test tube. What is the credit there? Millions of machine are coming out without your test tube. But they want to take credit.

So anyway, this is a machine, and the machine is given by God. Bhrāmayan sarva-bhūtāni yantrārūḍhāni māyayā [Bg. 18.61]. God has nothing to do. He simply orders His maidservant, this material nature. The material nature is God's maidservant, lower-grade maidservant. He has got many maidservants, Lakṣmīs. They are all goddess of fortune. Lakṣmī-sahasra-śata-sambhrama-sevyamānam [Bs. 5.29]. He has got so many. The gopīs are maidservants. The Lakṣmīs are maidservant. You will find this description in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, Kṛṣṇa book, that all the queens of Kṛṣṇa, they were discussing with Draupadī female talk. Draupadī was asking, "How you were married?" So they were narrating the incidence, how [s]he was married to Kṛṣṇa. But the conclusion is there = every queen was speaking, "In this way, I have been maidservant of Kṛṣṇa." Nobody says that "I have become queen," although they were queen. They were also coming from royal family, very good family. Kṛṣṇa had to conquer such queen by fighting. They're not ordinary wife. But still, they say that "In this way I have become maidservant."

So everyone is maidservant. We are also maidservant, prakṛti. Prakṛti means female. Jīva-bhūtāḥ, yayedaṁ dhāryate, itas tu prakṛti viddhi me parāḥ [Bg. 7.5]. Kṛṣṇa says... First of all the material energy, prakṛti... The material energy is also prakṛti, maidservant. And the spiritual energy also, maidservant. And we are, we jīvas, we are also maidservant. Here we are dressed as man, but our original position is maidservant of Kṛṣṇa, prakṛti. Here, of course, even woman, she is also thinking as man. Man means enjoyer, and prakṛti means enjoyed. So anyone who is thinking, "I am enjoyer," outwardly he may be in the female form or male form---he is puruṣa. Therefore this conditioned soul is puruṣa. Puruṣaḥ prakṛti-sthe api [Bg. 13.22].

So anyone who has come within this material world, everyone is thinking, "I am puruṣa. I am enjoyer." That is sinful. That is... Just like if a woman artificially dresses herself as a man, that is not very good business. That is not appreciated. So our position is that we are actually maidservant of Kṛṣṇa, but here, in the material world, we are trying to become puruṣa, or enjoyer. This is our disease. That is sinful. That is sinful. Suppose if a woman dresses like man... Of course, nowadays it is very fashionable to have coat, pant, like the... So that is not very..., liked very much. It is artificial. So anything artificial we do, that is sinful. This is the description of sin. What is sin? You, if you act naturally, that is good; but if you act artificially, that is sinful. This is the distinction between sinful activities and pious activities.

So our natural function is, as described by Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, jīvera 'svarūpa' haya nitya kṛṣṇa dāsa [Cc. Madhya 20.108-109]. This is our constitutional position, that we are eternally servant of Kṛṣṇa, or maidservant of Kṛṣṇa, as you say. But we are trying to become master. So that is sinful. So we are creating so many positions, situations, "How I can become the master." Kṛṣṇa bhuliya jīva bhoga vāñchā kare, pasate māyā tāre jāpaṭiyā dhare [Prema-vivarta]. The living entity, forgetting his real position as maidservant of God or servant of God, when he wants to enjoy this material world, that is māyā. Māyā tāre jāpaṭiyā dhare [Prema-vivarta]. Immediately. That is sinful.

So this disease is there even in Lord Brahmā down to the small ant. Everyone is trying to enjoy this material... The whole material civilization means everyone is trying to enjoy this world, that civilization. So many cars are running here and there, but what is the purpose? The purpose is everyone is trying to enjoy. That is sinful. That is sinful, because you cannot enjoy. Enjoyer is Kṛṣṇa. Bhoktāraṁ yajña-tapasāṁ sarva-loka-maheśvaram [Bg. 5.29]. So long you are trying to encroach upon Kṛṣṇa's jurisdiction---everything is Kṛṣṇa's jurisdiction, but you are falsely trying to enjoy---that is disease.

So this human life specially meant for understanding this truth. That is human life. Kṛṣṇa is educating the human society. Apareyam itas tu viddhi me prakṛtiṁ parāḥ [Bg. 7.5]. First of all He described the material energy, bhūmir āpo 'nalo vāyuḥ [Bg. 7.4]. This is also Kṛṣṇa's energy. Kṛṣṇa is everything---the material, spiritual, marginal, everything. Parasya śaktir vividhaiva śruyate [Cc. Madhya 13.65, purport]. Somewhere He is personally present. Somewhere He is present by His energy. So everything is energy of Kṛṣṇa. Parasya brāhmaṇaḥ śaktiḥ.

jyotsnā vistārina yathā
parasya brāhmaṇaḥ śaktiḥ
sarvedam akhilam jagat

[Viṣṇu Purāṇa 1.22.52]

Very nicely it is described in the Viṣṇu Purāṇa, shortly, what is this world, manifested world. This manifested world is distribution of the energy of Brahman. Just like this whole material world, universe, is distribution of the energy of the sun. This is scientific. Everyone knows. Similarly, whatever there is, it is the distribution of the energy of Kṛṣṇa. So Kṛṣṇa and Kṛṣṇa's energy not different. But still, energy is not Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa is not energy. In this way we have to understand Kṛṣṇa.

So every living entity who has forgotten Kṛṣṇa, trying to be..., trying to imitate Kṛṣṇa, that is sinful. So these sinful activities we are doing in ignorance, in lower grade of life. Just like cats and dogs and birds and trees and the..., they do not know; there is no capacity. They are so much covered with ignorance that a tree is standing, you cut it = there is no protest, because it is so dull. Similarly, you take the animal, slaughterhouse, it cannot protest. These are the symptoms of ignorance. And as soon as there is awakening of Kṛṣṇa consciousness or advanced consciousness, then if I pinch you, immediately you protest, "Why you have pinched me?" That is the difference between the lower-grade life and higher-grade life. So if in the higher-grade life we do not understand Kṛṣṇa, then we are making suicide, cutting our own throat. That is sinful.

So here is a chance, the human form of body. Death will come to the dog and to me also. Then where is the difference? The difference is so long I am living, I can try to understand Kṛṣṇa; others cannot. If we miss this opportunity, then we are committing suicide. This is the verdict of the śāstra. Nāyaṁ deha deho-bhājāṁ nṛloke. Everybody has got material body. The ant has got also material body, and Lord Brahmā has got also material body. Anyone who is in the material world, he has got this material body. Therefore it is called ayaṁ deha: "this deha, this body." I am not deha. That is the tenth-class ignorance if I think, "I am this body." Nāyaṁ deho deha-bhājāṁ nṛloke [SB 5.5.1]. Everyone has got body, but nrloke, in the human society, the body which you have got, or the person who has got this human form of body, kaṣṭān kāmān na arhate, for such animal, I mean, having this material body, human body, it is not meant for working so hard. That is first-class civilization, when people are not working very hard; living very peacefully and getting their necessities of life. That is first-class civilization. Not that to work day and night like hogs and dog, and get a cup of tea and little morsel of bread. That is not civilization. Therefore śāstra says, nāyaṁ deho deha-bhājāṁ nṛloke kaṣṭān kāmān arhate viḍ-bhu... [SB 5.5.1]. This kind of hard labor for sense gratification little, it is done by the hogs and dogs.

So to teach people to work day and night for simply eating purposes, sense gratification, that is hog civilization, according to śāstra. Nāyaṁ deha deho-bhājāṁ nṛloke kaṣṭān kāmān arhate viḍ-bhujāṁ ye. Then what is the purpose of human life? Tapo divyaṁ putrakā yena śuddhyed sattva yena brahma-saukhyaṁ anantam [SB 5.5.1]. You are seeking after happiness. So this life is meant for tapasya, austerity, not to indulge in sense gratification. That is done by the dogs and hogs. You are human being, you are meant for practicing austerity. "Oh, why shall I practice austerity?" Now, yato śuddhyed sattva: your existence will be purified. You are suffering in this material world because your existence is not purified. Therefore you are accepting death. Who dies? The diseased man dies. Of course, everyone dies. Everyone is diseased here. But generally, we understand, one who is not healthy, he dies. So why we die? We are eternal. Everyone knows. Nityaḥ śāśvato 'yam na hanyate hanyamāne śarīre [Bg. 2.20]. Then why I am dying? Why I am suffering from disease, from old age? This should be the human question, and they should try to solve this, and this opportunity is given by nature and God combined. God has ordered nature to give me this machine, human form of body. If we do not utilize it as human being, that is sinful. That is sinful.

So there are so many witnesses, as we have already discussed.

sūryo 'gniḥ khaṁ marud devaḥ
somaḥ sandhyāhanī diśaḥ
kaṁ kuḥ svayaṁ dharma iti
hy ete daihyasya sākṣiṇaḥ

How Kṛṣṇa is anxious, that "This rascal has been given the nice human form of body to understand Me, My relationship with him." Durlabhaṁ mānuṣaṁ janma tad apy adhruvam arthadam [SB 7.6.1]. Prahlāda Mahārāja said that this human form of body is durlabhaṁ. Labham means "obtainable," and duḥ, "when you have difficulty." So many species of life we had to go through by evolution. Jalajā nava-lakṣāni sthāvarā lakṣa-viṁśati [Padma Purāṇa]. In this way we have got this human form, durlabhaṁ, with great difficulty.

So Prahlāda Mahārāja, durlabhaṁ mānuṣaṁ janma. So mānuṣaṁ janma, durlabhaṁ: "very, very difficult to obtain it." So somebody says, "What is the benefit? Everyone dies, and man also dies." But Prahlāda Mahārāja says, "Yes, that is fact." Durlabhaṁ mānuṣaṁ janma tad apy adhruvam arthadam: "Although it is temporary, but you can achieve the great success of life." That is int... Arthadam, arthadam. Artha means some meaningful. If we don't use it as meaningful life, then we are punished, again go to... Either go to back to home, back to Godhead, or go to dogs' and cats' life. We have to select now. Jaghanya-guṇa-vṛtti-sthā adho gacchanti tāmasāḥ [Bg. 14.18]. If you practice only tamo-guṇa, then you go to hell again.

So therefore it is said here, etair adharmo vijñātaḥ. One who is religious or irreligious, there are so many witnesses. They inform. Kṛṣṇa personally sees also. He is there within the heart. So it is not very difficult for Kṛṣṇa and His agent to understand who is religious or irreligious. Just like I have said many times that our test tube testing is Kṛṣṇa's word that "One who is religious or unreligious..." What is that? Catur-vidhā bhajante māṁ sukṛtinaḥ arjuna [Bg. 7.16] = "Four classes of men who are pious, they come to Me for worshiping." Who are they? Ārto, arthārthī, jijñāsuḥ, jñānī: four classes. One who is distressed, he goes to God = "Sir, I am very much distressed. Kindly give me relief." Arthārthī, one is poor, he also goes, provided he is pious. The impious, they'll "Huh, what is God? I will do it." Just like the Communists, they say, "You are poor, so why you are going to the church? Beg from us bread." And poor men, they beg, and they give many breads, and they become atheist = "Well, we are getting from the Communist leaders bread. Why shall I go to church, 'God gives us, give me'?" But because they are poor, poor in knowledge, they do not know that the bread is coming from the Communist factory. It is coming from God, the wheat. That is not manufactured in the factory. But they have no intelligence. They think that "Our Communist friend, he is giving me bread."

So in this way we are misguided by so many rascals and forget God, and that is sinful life. That is the sinful life. Therefore it is said, etair adharmaḥ vijñātaḥ: now as soon as you are sinful, you have to be punished. That is nature's law. Prakṛteḥ kriyamāṇāni guṇaiḥ karmāṇi sarvaśaḥ [Bg. 3.27]. It is not that God has to come personally to punish you. When God comes personally to punish you, then you are not ordinary. [laughter] Just like He came to punish Rāvaṇa, Kaṁsa. They are not ordinary. But ordinary person, a little headache is sufficient to finish him. He doesn't require to bring God. God's agents---there are so many agents---one agent is sufficient. So in this way there are different grades of punishment. Just like first-class, second-class, third-class prisoner. They are all punished in the prison house, but some of them are first class, some of them are second class.

So similarly, within this material world... It is called durga. Durga means fort, and the superintending deity is called Durgā, goddess material nature. So it is a fort like. You cannot go from here and there. You are trying so much to go from this planet to moon. You cannot go. Just like in the prison house, no prisoner can leave this place to go to another unless he is ordered to do so; similarly, we are conditioned. It is not possible, "Because we have manufactured some machine, by force I can go anywhere." No. That is not possible. That is not possible. You may do it for perpetually, but śāstra says if you practice piously, then you can be elevated to the higher planetary system. It is very easy, but we are so fool, we cannot understand that... Suppose in coming either from India to America or America to..., we have to make so many arrangements = visa, passport, medical certificate, this, that. No country will allow you without all these things. So how you can go to the other planets without being equipped? This is foolishness. This is not possible. We are conditioned means we cannot go from here to there. There is rule and regulation. Prakṛteḥ kriyamāṇāni guṇaiḥ karmāṇi sarvaśaḥ [Bg. 3.27].

So this is futile attempt. Therefore the Vaiṣṇavas recommend that "Why you are foolishly attempting so many things? Just utilize this life for developing Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Chant Hare Kṛṣṇa."

Thank you very much. [end]