Room Conversation with Sannyāsīs , Bhubaneswar , 1977-01-22
Prabhupāda: So I am anxious to receive report from Satsvarūpa Mahārāja.
Satsvarūpa: The library party?
Satsvarūpa: He's bringing... I have a map of all that they've done very recently. Right now they're in Germany.
Prabhupāda: Hare Kṛṣṇa. We have received one telegram from where? Poland.
Devotee (1): Poland University.
Satsvarūpa: Harikeśa Mahārāja has programs in all those countries = Poland, Hungary...
Prabhupāda: He is very enthusiastic. [laughs]
Satsvarūpa: Oh, yes.
Prabhupāda: Yes. Therefore I asked him that "You go there."
Rāmeśvara: Gargamuni Mahārāja has sold 550 standing orders in six months.
Gargamuni: Those are delivered.
Rāmeśvara: Those are delivered.
Gargamuni: There's a hundred others that aren't.
Rāmeśvara: Pending. And he's got reviews coming in every day. He's already published a booklet just of reviews, which we want to reprint, both combined.
Prabhupāda: Oh, yes. You print. It is very helpful.
Rāmeśvara: We want to reprint something very similar.
Satsvarūpa: I saw that Kṛṣṇa Consciousness Is Authorized, Indian.
Rāmeśvara: No, this is much better.
Satsvarūpa: So we have new reviews, too, from two professors in Finland.
Satsvarūpa: We have one who is a man in the Department of Nuclear Physics. He said the Indian astronomers... First... He read the Fifth Canto, with all its scientific descriptions. First he says that he did not think that they possessed instruments to measure distances. But anyway, he said their understanding is truly remarkable. Then he goes on to say... He compares it with Western astronomy. It's a long review.
Rāmeśvara: What did he say about Prabhupāda?
Satsvarūpa: There wasn't much in that way.
Prabhupāda: But they can measure the distance from one planet to another? Their astronomical measurement?
Satsvarūpa: No. Just by theory.
Prabhupāda: So how they can...?
Rāmeśvara: Read it out loud.
Satsvarūpa: He wants that you... He said, "The translator frequently adds comments containing information from other Vedic scriptures, for instance, ancient astronomical calculations referred to by Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura. It would be highly interesting to have a compilation of such astronomical texts translated into English. One can only hope that the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust endeavors to do this to the great benefit of the historians of science."
Prabhupāda: We shall do it. I am searching after some astronomer.
Rāmeśvara: There is also a review from one Indian professor, how this science...
Prabhupāda: Anyway, they have become interested in our literature.
Satsvarūpa: Yes. Whether he completely agrees or not, he's fascinated by it.
Prabhupāda: That is another thing. But...
Rāmeśvara: From Dr. Jagdish Sharma, he wrote that "This edition of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam will go a long way to help the scientists in rediscovering phenomena of the universe which is yet to be discovered."
Rāmeśvara: He's the university librarian cum professor of Library Science at Punjab University. And he's the author of nineteen books, including Encyclopedia Indica.
Satsvarūpa: This is a very good one, from the University of Helsinki. That's right near the Russian border, in Finland. He says, er... He's a professor of Indian studies, the Department of Asian and African Studies, Professor Extraordinarious, Penti Alto. "The Bhagavad-gītā is no doubt the most important and the best known work in the whole of Indian literature. The magnificence of its spiritual concepts and the sublimity of its thinking have secured a great popularity everywhere. It has been edited and commented countless times. The meaning of the text, at least in its main lines, is obvious and clear. The justification of a new interpretation is therefore, in my opinion, dependent on the message conveyed by the commentary. The translator and commentator, Swami Bhaktivedanta, represents the Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇava school, and thus interprets the message of the Gītā 'from the inside.' For example, Shankara in Canto Two"---he means Chapter Two---"verse twelve, interprets the plurality of the beings enumerated to be only conventional. And according to the Māyāvādīns, the individuals after liberation merge into the impersonal Brahman. Swami Bhaktivedanta states that Kṛṣṇa here authoritatively emphasizes the eternity of the individuality."
Satsvarūpa: "The transcendental form of God can be immediately experienced by a person who is duly prepared, as it is told in Chapter Eleven. Just these two points are, I think, the reason for the interest in the Gītā among persons with a searching spirit. Swami Bhaktivedanta's translation and commentary do deliver this message very convincingly indeed."
Satsvarūpa = There was another one. I don't...
Prabhupāda: He is a big professor.
Satsvarūpa: Yes, he's very important. At each university they find there's only one man who is very important in the Indian studies. So he's the biggest man there. I don't know whether this one was sent to you by a Dutch... State University of Leiden, in Leiden, the Netherlands, Dr. Schocker...
Prabhupāda: I don't think
Satsvarūpa: He wrote a long review on the Bhagavad-gītā.
Satsvarūpa: No. He's Dutch, Schocker, or German. It's a long review, all about the Bhagavad-gītā.
Prabhupāda: Read it. Let us hear.
Satsvarūpa: "The Bhagavad-gītā, the Song of the Exalted God, is a very ancient philosophical, didactic poem on bhakti..." [break]
Prabhupāda: Evaṁ paramparā-prāptam [Bg. 4.2].
Rāmeśvara: It's clear that for the first time these scholars are understanding the difference between the Bhagavad-gītā and the Māyāvādī conception. It's clear that now you have saved them. Previous to this, all they knew about is this impersonal concept.
Prabhupāda: That is the business of ācārya = sampradāya-rakṣana, to save the sampradāya from falling down. Sampradāya. Sampradāya rakṣana.
Rāmeśvara: After centuries of rascaldom you are giving them the first clear choice.
Prabhupāda: Yes. That was the desire of my Guru Mahārāja. I am just trying.
Satsvarūpa: Another professor that was met is going to, with ten students, is going... I have his name, a Professor Kalewart from the University of Leuven in Belgium. He's supposed to go to Kṛṣṇa-Balarāma Mandir on February lst with ten people.
Prabhupāda: He has gone?
Satsvarūpa: No, on February 1st.
Gargamuni: He should stay in our guesthouse.
Prabhupāda: So inform them, "You come."
Satsvarūpa: Yes. He's going to study at that place, that research place at Loi Bazaar, the Vṛndāvana Research Institute.
Satsvarūpa: He's some scholar of Rūpa Gosvāmī. But he has to stay at Kṛṣṇa-Balarāma.
Prabhupāda: So take some breakfast.
Rāmeśvara: Without your activities this man could not have written that. He could not have had that understanding. If you had not started this movement, there would be no difference, no contrast. There would just be Māyāvādī in the Western world.
Prabhupāda: Yes. People heard that Indian philosophy is Māyāvāda. Māyāvādam asac chāstraṁ pracchanaṁ bauddhaṁ ucyate. Caitanya Mahāprabhu repeatedly said, māyāvāda bhāṣya śunile haya sarva nāśa [Cc. Madhya 6.169] = "He is doomed." Māyāvādī haya kṛṣṇe aparādhi [Cc. Madhya 17.129]. These are the direct charges against the Māyāvāda. My Guru Mahārāja also, a staunch enemy of the Māyāvāda philosophy. And you are also singing nirviśeṣa-śūnyavādī. The śūnyavādī are the Buddhist, and nirviśeṣavādī are the Māyāvādīs. Paścatya-deśa, they are embarassed with this śūnyavādī and nirviśeṣavādī. Now we are trying to give them solid personification of the Absolute Truth. Here also, India, they are spoiled by these Māyāvādī. Now it is in your hand, able hands. You are resourceful, intelligent. Spread this Vaiṣṇava philosophy and challenge this Māyāvāda and śūnyavāda. Thank you.
Devotees: Jaya Prabhupāda.
Prabhupāda: Jaya. [devotees offer obeisances] Here is a would-be Vaiṣṇava. [laughs] Very nice. He is a very nice child.
Rāmeśvara: This is also... This review is a great praise that your writing is so clear that they cannot miss the point. He has understood the dif... You are forcing them to see a difference...
Rāmeśvara: ...between the Māyāvādī and the actual philosophy of Lord Caitanya. And that review is a credit that your writing is so clear that they cannot fail to understand the point.
Prabhupāda: He has written that "Bhaktivedanta Swami has very convincingly presented." He said that.
Satsvarūpa: Yes. That was the first one.
Hari-śauri: He was writing how you were following strictly in the paramparā.
Rāmeśvara: Some of these scholars write, "The message radiates and shines brightly from every page." They're writing like that.
Satsvarūpa: And after describing the whole tradition, he said that the Hare Kṛṣṇa movement is the Western branch. So that's a good testimony for our movement, not just the...
Hari-śauri: Not something concocted.
Rāmeśvara: Yes. That's very good.
Rāmeśvara: That's very important. He has given us historical...
Prabhupāda: That is wanted.
Rāmeśvara: Prabhupāda said this past week that in the future, historians will study this period of world history, how this movement has changed the world. He said in the future they will just note this period, how the world is being changed.
Prabhupāda: Yes, a new Renaissance. What is called? Renaissance?
Rāmeśvara: Yes. Renaissance.
Prabhupāda: Historical Renaissance.
Rāmeśvara: Jaya Śrīla Prabhupāda.
Prabhupāda: Jaya. [devotees offer obeisances]
Gargamuni: So this mo... [break] [end]