Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 7.6.5 , Vṛndāvana , 1975-12-07
Harikeśa: Oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya. Oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya. Oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya. [devotees repeat] Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, Seventh Canto, Sixth Chapter, verse number five. [leads chanting of verse, etc.]
ksemāya bhavam āśritaḥ
śarīraṁ pauruṣaṁ yāvan
na vipadyeta puṣkalam
Translation = "For this reason, a person who is fully competent to distinguish wrong and right while keeping himself in material existence, bhavam āśritaḥ, must endeavor for achieving the highest goal of life so long the body is stout and strong and is not embarrassed by the dwindling condition of life."
ksemāya bhavam āśritaḥ
śarīraṁ pauruṣaṁ yāvan
na vipadyeta puṣkalam
So Prahlāda Mahārāja said that people are engaged for improving economic condition. He has cancelled, that tat prayāso na kartavyo yata āyur vyayaḥ param [SB 7.6.4]. Prahlāda Mahārāja derides, that "These people who are simply wasting time for improving material condition, āhāra-nidrā-bhayaṁ maithun, they are not at all intelligent, because simply wasting time, valuable time." That I have explained yesterday, how important is this human form of life. Every moment should be utilized. Every moment is so valuable that if we lose one moment we lose so many hundred thousands of dollars. That they do not understand.
So how time can be utilized very nicely, that was also explained yesterday, mukunda-caraṇāmbujam, just to take shelter of Mukunda. Mukunda means who can deliver you from this conditional life. He is called Mukunda. That is the whole thing. Kṛṣṇa comes... The whole Bhagavad-gītā teaching ultimately ends with this order, mukunda-caraṇāmbujam. Sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja [Bg. 18.66]. This is the ultimate. But because people have become deviated, fallen, they do not know what is the end of life, what is the goal of life. They are simply wasting time. Vimura-cetaḥ[?]. Prahlāda Mahārāja said, "My Lord, I am not very much anxious for me, because I have no trouble. As I have learned to chant Your glories, so anywhere I am happy simply by glorifying Your activities. But I am unhappy for this reason = when I see that these rascals, simply for little material happiness, they are working so hard." Tato vimukha-cetasa māyā-sukhāya bharam udvahato vimūḍhān [SB 7.9.43]. "They have forgotten You." Vimukha cetasa. They think that "What is the use of this Kṛṣṇa consciousness?" Vimukha. And what is required? Māyā-sukhāya. For few years to live in material comforts, bharam udvahato vimūḍhān, they are manufacturing so many big, big skyscraper building, nice road, nice car. Māyā-sukhāya. In Western countries there is very... We are also imitating in India, like Bombay city and others, bharam udvahato, gorgeous arrangement. And what for? For living for a few years. Then he is going to cats and dogs. He doesn't know that. Therefore māyā-sukhāya. If somebody says that "You come here at my place. I shall give you very good food, nice shelter, all comforts, and after few days I shall drive you away and I shall beat you with my shoes," will anybody agree? No. So we are doing that. Forgetting our real business, we are busy in māyā-sukhāya bharam udvahato vimūḍhān [SB 7.9.43].
So Prahlāda Mahārāja concludes this instruction in this way = tato yateta kuśalaḥ kṣemāya bhavam āśritaḥ. Bhavam, bhavam means this material world, where we take birth and die after some time. Bhavam means "become, manifest." This is material world. We take birth, we exist for some time, we grow, then there are some by-products, and then we become old and then die. This is called ṣaḍ-vikāra, six kinds of changes. But the ātmā is the same. The example is given = just like a tree, any tree, say a mango tree. During season, summer season, there are flowers in the tree, and then they grow the small green mango, then it becomes yellow or reddish, and then it becomes ripened. Then there is a seed within the mango. And then, when it is over-ripened, it falls down. Then finished, business finished. Similarly... But when the mango is finished, it does not mean the tree is also finished. The tree is there, and again, in the next season, there will be mango and the same changes will go on. Similarly... It is a crude example. We spirit soul, we are eternal exactly like the tree. Tree is not eternal, but in comparison to the fruit, it is eternal. A tree lives for hundred, thousand, five hundred, years, and the same business go on---the mango, it is coming in fu..., just like flower, then green, then grows, then dwindles. So we are eternal, and our different bodies are just like seasonal fruits. On account of our different karma, we get different body. So this body is undergoing the six kind of changes. But the soul, he is not going any change. He is the same.
So here it is said that we are changing, bhava. Ever-increasingly we are taking birth. Janma-mṛtyu-jarā-vyādhi-duḥkha-doṣānudarśanam [Bg. 13.9]. This is our actual distress, that we are obliged to take birth, death, disease, old age. So we are struggling against it. Nobody wants to become old man, especially in this winter season. It is very difficult for old men. So, but you have to accept jarā and vyādhi. Nobody can escape disease. Nobody can escape birth. Nobody can escape death. But struggle is going on. When you are diseased, there is a great struggle how to cure myself, go to the doctor, take good medicine and so on, so on. But we cannot check the diseased condition. Similarly, we cannot check our old age, cannot check our birth, death. Therefore here it is said, kuśalaḥ. Kuśalaḥ means if you actually want benefit, because this kind of struggling has not given you any benefit, but if you want actually benefit, kuśalaḥ, tato yateta, then you should endeavor for this. What is that? Ksemāya, for your ultimate benefit. And how long? Śarīraṁ puruṣaṁ yāvan na vipadyeta puṣkalam. So long you are stout and strong, you should try how to become free from this bondage of birth, death, old age and disease, not that you keep yourself this business set aside = "When we shall get old then we shall chant Hare Kṛṣṇa and become Kṛṣṇa conscious." That is not the meaning. Immediately.
Prahlāda Mahārāja said that kaumāra ācaret prājño dharmān bhāgavatān iha [SB 7.6.1]. From the very beginning of life, when kaumāra, a small child, boy, from that age one should begin this bhāgavata life, or Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That is called brahmacārī, to teach brahmacarya from the very beginning of life. And when you are young, then you should work with more vigor and intelligence. At that time brain is very nice. Young man has got all the facilities. The machine is strong. This is a machine. So old machine cannot so work. So it is a great fortune for the young boys and girls of Europe and America that in this young life they are cultivating Kṛṣṇa consciousness. It is a very good fortune.
Here it is recommended by Prahlāda Mahārāja, śarīraṁ pauruṣaṁ yāvan na vipadyeta puṣkalam. So long you do not become invalid, old, unable to work, you should try. Not try, you must---yateta---for developing Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Not that "When I shall become old, before death I shall try a few months Hare Kṛṣṇa." No. From the very beginning of life, from childhood, they should be taught how to chant Hare Kṛṣṇa, how to attend maṅgala ārati, how to... In this way, by this practice, vidhi, vidhi-bhakti, regulated principle, tapasya... This is called tapasya. Tapo divyaṁ putrakā yena śuddhyet sattvam [SB 5.5.1]. If you want to purify your existence, then you should begin... That is human life, tapasya. Human life is not meant for polished dogism and pigism. That is not human life. If a cat and dog becomes nicely dressed, that does not mean he becomes a human being. He is cat and dog. Similarly, if we keep our mentality like cats and dog and outwardly we dress very nicely, they have been described as dvi-pada-paśuḥ, "two-legged animal." Animal. He is animal, because he is not cultivating Kṛṣṇa consciousness. The cats and dogs cannot do it, so he is no better than cats and dog. This is the conclusion. Sa eva go-kharaḥ. That is the verdict of Vedic literature.
sva-dhīḥ kalatrādiṣu bhauma-ijya-dhīḥ
yat tīrtha-buddhiḥ salile na karhicit
janeṣu abhijñeṣu sa eva go-kharaḥ
Just like in Vṛndāvana many visitors come. They think that by simply taking a dip into the Yamunā water their tīrtha is finished, pilgrimage is finished. But śāstra says, yat tīrtha-buddhiḥ salile. If one comes to Vṛndāvana and simply takes advantage of taking a bath in the river Yamunā, that is also very good, but that does not finish his business. He must seek out where in Vṛndāvana Kṛṣṇa consciousness is going on, janeṣu abhijñeṣu, "Where there is a person who can teach me about Kṛṣṇa conscious..." That is humanity. Otherwise, if he thinks simply by going to Vṛndāvana and taking a dip in Yamunā or shaving the head and purchasing some utensils for sons and daughter, their tīrtha... They have been described as sa eva go-kharaḥ [SB 10.84.13]. Go means cow, and kharaḥ means ass. Tīrthī-kurvanti tīrthāni. When you go some holy place, because in the holy place there are many persons who are very learned, who can give you very good instruction about spiritual life, so you must seek such person and associate with him. That is tīrtha. Tīrthī-kurvanti tīrthāni. Because it is said in the śāstra that ordinary men with sinful habits, they come to tīrtha, holy place, and actually they become purified. Actually they become purified. That is the glory of tīrtha-sthāna, dhāma. But when such sinful garbage is accumulated, who will clear? It will be cleared by the saintly person, by their puṇya work. Tīrthī-kurvanti tīrtha... Again they make it tīrtha.
So therefore it is advised... So anyone who is coming to Vṛndāvana, they must seek out the devotees who have dedicated to Kṛṣṇa consciousness and trying to preach Kṛṣṇa consciousness to the ignorant people who are busy in material activities. This is tīrtha. Therefore it is recommended. In India you'll find so many tīrthas, so many tīrthas---Prayag, Mathurā, Vṛndāvana, Haridwar, Rāmeśvaram. That is the arrangement. And after retirement of life, vanaṁ vrajet. Pañcāśordhvaṁ vanaṁ vrajet. Prahlāda Mahārāja also said to his father, hitvātmā-ghāṭaṁ gṛha-andha-kūpaṁ vanaṁ gato yad dharim āśrayeta [SB 7.5.5]. Formerly big, big kings---everyone---compulsory retirement, vānaprastha, sannyāsa. Vanam means go to the forest. One who goes to the forest, he is called vānaprastha. From vana, the word vāna has come, vānaprastha. Pañcāśordhvaṁ vanaṁ vrajet, that "After fifty years of age one must go to the forest for meditation, for tapasya, austerity." And when he is perfectly trained up... This training is given from brahmacārī life, gṛhastha life also, but people are not taking training. They are not kuśalam. Actually they do not know what is the aim of life. They are cats and dogs.
So one who is kuśala, actually knows the aim of life, for him, yateta ksemāya bhavam āśritaḥ. Because in the material existence it is simply suffering. But these foolish men, they do not understand. They are thinking, "Enjoyment." How you can enjoy? Kṛṣṇa says, duḥkhālayam aśāśvatam [Bg. 8.15] = "This is a place for suffering." Actually suffering, tri-tapa-yātanaḥ, adhibhautika, adhidaivika adhi... But because they have become fools and rascals, they do not understand that they are suffering. They are taking it they are enjoying. Bhavam āśritaḥ. Therefore, anyone who is in such condition, abominable condition, condemned condition, they must take to shelter of Kṛṣṇa consciousness so long the body is strong enough. [break] ...when the body is old and it cannot move, it is attacked with rheumatism, and so many other things, indigestion. No. So long it is śarīraṁ puruṣam.
Puruṣam, why this word used? There are women also. Puruṣam does not mean man. Puruṣam means one who wants to enjoy. He is called puruṣa. Anyone here in the material world, although one has got the body of a male or although one has got the body of a female, both of them are for enjoyment. Therefore it is used, puruṣa. Puruṣa means enjoyer. So either the woman or man, the propensity is how to enjoy life. Therefore it is called. So either puruṣa, the male or female, anyone who has got this body, he must perform Kṛṣṇa consciousness until she becomes... It should go on. If you practice when you are stout and strong... Just like a person begins exercising in young age, and in the old age also he can perform exercise. Practice, anything you practice, that is recommended. Yateta kuśalaḥ ksemāya bhavam āśritaḥ.
So this is Prahlāda Mahārāja's instruction, that "Don't waste your time. Human life is very valuable." And Cāṇakya Paṇḍita also says, āyuṣaḥ kṣaṇa eko 'pi na labhyaḥ svarṇa-koṭibhiḥ: "You cannot get back even one moment of your life by paying millions of dollars." So if you waste your time... The Kṛṣṇa conscious people, they should not be lazy. They should always remember that "Death is already there. Let me finish my business properly so that after death I may not be a cat and dog. At least I may get..." There is no... My Guru Mahārāja used to say that "Why should you wait for another life? Finish Kṛṣṇa consciousness business in this life." In this life. Why you should set aside the business for another life? No. Tūrṇaṁ yateta anumṛtya pateta yāvat. This is the instructions of... Before the next death you should prepare yourself for death. Death is inevitable. You cannot avoid death. But before the next death comes, if you become fully Kṛṣṇa conscious, then your life is successful. Janma karma ca me divyaṁ yo jānāti tattvataḥ [Bg. 4.9].
What is Kṛṣṇa? Try to understand Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa = what is Kṛṣṇa, why He appears, why He disappears, what is His nature, who is He---so many things are to be known. Kṛṣṇa is God. He is not an ordinary thing. He has got unlimited qualities, unlimited function. And if we simply understand that kṛṣṇas tu bhagavān svayam... [SB 1.3.28]. Without going into the details, if we accept simply this fact, that "Here is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vāsudeva, and everything is the exhibition of His different energies," vāsudevaḥ sarvam iti sa mahātmā su-durlabhaḥ [Bg. 7.19]---if you simply understand, even if blindly, that everything, whatever we see, that is exhibition of Kṛṣṇa's energy... Just like in this material world the practical example is, whatever we see---the trees and the plants and buildings, the chemicals, the... Everything is generating from the sunlight, energy of the sun globe. Similarly, whatever we see... Kṛṣṇa says also,
nāhaṁ teṣu avasthitaḥ
Kṛṣṇa is manifest by His energy. So if we understand these things, that is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. There is nothing but Kṛṣṇa; therefore it should be utilized for Kṛṣṇa. If everything belongs to Kṛṣṇa... Things belonging to a certain person, it must be utilized for him. This is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Not that your property I can utilize for my benefit. That is stealing. That is cheating. So similarly, if we understand parasya brāhmaṇaḥ śaktiḥ sarvedam akhilaṁ jagat, "Everything, whatever we see, it is distribution or manifestation of Kṛṣṇa's energy..." That is explained:
khaṁ mano buddhir eva ca
bhinnā me prakṛti aṣṭadhā
viddhi me prakṛtiṁ parā
yayedaṁ dhāryate jagat
Everything is explained.
So if you simply try to understand Bhagavad-gītā and don't play rascaldom by interpreting in a different way, then your life is successful. Simply. Kṛṣṇa has left, therefore, before His leaving this world... Yadā yadā hi dharmasya glānir bhavati bhārata, tadātmānaṁ sṛjāmi [Bg. 4.7]. He comes when you forget all these things. He comes again. He establishes dharma-saṁsthāpanārthāya. What is that dharma? Sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja [Bg. 18.66] = "All this rascaldom, cheating dharma, give up. Simply surrender unto Me." So if you simply learn this art, that is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Then the result will be tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti mām eti kaunteya [Bg. 4.9]. You have to give up this body. That is certain. But if you don't take to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, then you have to accept another body. Bhūtvā bhūtvā pralīyate [Bg. 8.19]. So don't do this business. Finish this business. Samupeta-mṛtyum. Na mocayed yaḥ samupeta-mṛtyum [SB 5.5.18]. This material existence means repetition of birth and death, bhavāśritaḥ.
So if we want to be saved and elevated to our original position, then only means is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. There is no other way out. That is stated by Prahlāda, mukunda-caraṇāmbujam. He does not say for any other gods. Mukunda. Then what about others, who are worshiping other demigods? Mūḍhā. They have been... Kāmais tais tair hṛta-jñānā yajanty anya-devatāḥ [Bg. 7.20]. These rascals are befooled on account of lusty desires. Antavat tu phalaṁ teṣām [Bg. 7.23]. Suppose you worship a demigod. Yānti deva-vratā devān [Bg. 9.25]. You can be elevated to the celestial world, heavenly planet. But what will be benefit? You'll have to die there. The same death is there. You have to struggle there. Don't think that the demigods, they are living very peacefully. No. That is not possible. Indra is always embarrassed with so many things. You have read the fight with Indra. So many asuras, devāsura, Hiraṇyakaśipu. The same thing as... Simply they have got a long duration of life, a high standard of life, but the same struggle. Just like here you see in India and Europe, America. They have got the high standard of life, they have got skyscraper building, very big, big roads, motorcar. But what is that? Simply struggling. Are they happy? We are poor country. Of course, we have no such opulence. But the standard, the janma-mṛtyu-jarā-vyādhi [Bg. 13.9], is there, not that they are sitting idly and food is coming automatically. No. They have to struggle.
So either you be in the heavenly planet or in the lowest planet, the struggle is there. Manaḥ-ṣaṣṭhānīndriyāṇi prakṛti-sthāni karṣati [Bg. 15.7]. So long we'll be in the material world, you have to... Ā-brahma-bhuvanāl lokān punar āvartino 'rjuna [Bg. 8.16]. Even you go to the Brahmaloka or Indraloka, Candraloka... They are trying to go to the Candraloka. They are trying to go to the Candraloka, but they do not know where is Candraloka. They are going and coming, going and coming. So one must know it that "Even if I go to the Brahmaloka by our material power, that is also punar āvartino arjuna. That is bhavam āśritaḥ." So we should try to avoid the material existence and come to our original life, eternal life, blissful life, sac-cid-ānanda-vigraha [Bs. 5.1]. That is really solution of the problem, ksemāya. Kuśalaḥ ksemāya. [SB 7.6.5] So long this human body we have got, and especially young men, don't spoil it. That is our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement.
Thank you very much.
Devotees: Jaya Śrīla Prabhupāda. [end]