Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 7.6.1

March 3
San Francisco



…gopeśa gopikā-kānta
rādhā-kānta namo ‘stu te

[O my dear Kṛṣṇa, ocean of mercy, You are the friend of the distressed and the source of creation. You are the master of the cowherdmen and the lover of the gopīs, especially Rādhārāṇī. I offer my respectful obeisances unto You.] 

rādhe vṛndāvaneśvari
vṛṣabhānu-sute devi
praṇamāmi hari-priye

[I offer my respects to Rādhārāṇī, whose bodily complexion is like molten gold and who is the Queen of Vṛndāvana. You are the daughter of King Vṛṣabhānu, and You are very dear to Lord Kṛṣṇa.] 

Hare Kṛṣṇa Hare Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Hare Hare
Hare Rāma Hare Rāma Rāma Rāma Hare Hare

[My dear Lord, and the spiritual energy of the Lord, kindly engage me in Your service. I am now embarrassed with this material service. Please engage me in Your service.] 

śrī-prahrāda uvāca
kaumāra ācaret prājño
dharmān bhāgavatān iha
durlabhaṁ mānuṣaṁ janma
tad apy adhruvam arthadam
[SB 7.6.1]plugin-autotooltip__small plugin-autotooltip_bigŚrīmad Bhāgavatam 7.6.1

Prahlāda Mahārāja said: One who is sufficiently intelligent should use the human form of body from the very beginning of life—in other words, from the tender age of childhood—to practice the activities of devotional service, giving up all other engagements. The human body is most rarely achieved, and although temporary like other bodies, it is meaningful because in human life one can perform devotional service. Even a slight amount of sincere devotional service can give one complete perfection.

Today I shall speak before you the conversation of Prahlāda Mahārāja and his classfellows. Prahlāda Mahārāja, when he was grown up young man, he was a big emperor. But when he was a child, from the very beginning of his life, he was a great devotee. And his father was a great atheist. So the child was taught about this bhāgavata-dharma, or… Bhāgavata-dharma means dealings with the Personality of Godhead. There are many kinds of dealings. So when our dealings are with the Supreme Personality of Godhead, that is called bhāgavata-dharma. 

Bhāgavata means from the word bhagavān. Bhagavān means the person who has got all the six opulences in full. He is called Bhagavān or God. In most scriptures of the world there is idea of God, but actually there is no definition of God. But in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, because it is science of God, there is definition, what do you mean by God. The definition is that one person who has got six opulences in full, He is God. What are the six opulences? Aiśvarya. Aiśvarya means wealth. And samāgra, aiśvaryasya samāgrasya, complete wealth. Complete wealth means, just like we are sitting here, say, twenty-five or fifty men. Everyone has got some wealth in bank balance. But if some one of us can exceed the bank balance of every one of us, he is called samāgra. Now try to understand what is the definition of God. There are many rich men, not only here in your country, in other countries also. So take the whole world as a whole, and if you scrutinize who is the richest man, you will hardly find one who is the richest of all. There is a competitor, another. But here the definition is the richest. Nobody can compete with Him, the richest. Then, aiśvaryasya samāgrasya vīryasya. Vīryasya means strength. You have got some strength, I have got some strength, but another man may be stronger than you and me. Another man is stronger than he. So nobody can say that “I am the strongest,” and nobody can say, “I am the richest.” So aiśvaryasya samāgrasya vīryasya yaśasaḥ. Yaśasaḥ means fame. Lābha-pūjā-pratiṣṭhaḥ. This materialistic life means we want some profit, we want some fame, and we want some good name. If I see that my name is stamped in the history, I think, “Oh, I am My life is successful.” But what is the history? Your name means your body, your photo of this body. But as soon as you leave this body, what you will do with this name? You are going to another body, another name. So aiśvaryasya samāgrasya vīryasya. Vīryasya means strength. So one should have the complete power of riches, complete power of strength, complete fame. Aiśvaryasya samāgrasya vīryasya yaśasaḥ śriyaḥ [Viṣṇu Purāṇa 6.5.47], and complete beauty. And jñāna, complete knowledge, and vairāgya, complete renouncement. If you can find out somebody that nobody is richer than him, nobody is more famous than him, nobody is stronger than him, nobody is wiser than him, nobody is more beautiful than him, and nobody is more renouncer than him, when these six opulences you will find, without any competition, that is God. This is the definition of God. 

So everything should be understood very distinctly, what do we mean by God, not that a third-class man comes and he proclaims himself, “I am God.” This is our foolishness. Why shall I accept a third-class man as God? At the present moment everyone is very much anxious to become God and cheat you. There are so many so-called swamis. They are coming, and they are preaching that “You are God. I am God.” Then who is God? Everyone is God? No. Therefore you will find in the Vedic literature definition of God. Here is definition of… Just apply this definition. If you find somebody, that he is corroborating with this definition of God, then he is God. Otherwise he is a nonsense. God is not so cheap thing. You find out a person that nobody can be found richer than him, nobody can be found stronger than him, nobody can be found more famous than him, or beautiful than him, or wiser than him, or renouncer than him. 

So this analysis, this definition, analytical study of God, is very nicely made by the sages, ancient sages of India, Bhārata-varṣa, and they have studied the qualification of the demigods just like the sun-god, the moon-god, the heavenly god, this god, that god. There are so many. You are also god, I am also god, in this sense, that every one of us has got little, little, these opulences. Everyone, you have got some wealth. It is not that you have no wealth, but you cannot claim that you are the wealthiest. That is not possible. As you have got also some strength, you have got also some fame, you have got also some beauty, you have got some also wisdom, you have got some renunciation. Little, little. Because we are part and parcel of the Supreme, therefore all the qualities of God can be found in each and every living entity in minute quantity. So you can claim that you are also minute god, but you cannot claim that you are Supreme God. This is the definition of God! So the science of God, or our relationship with God and our dealings with God, is called bhāgavata-dharma, occupation with God…, dealings with God. But Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam means how we can learn. 

First of all, we have to understand what is God, what I am, what is my relationship with God. And as soon as the relationship is established, then there is dealings. And as soon as there is dealing, then there is some profit. There must be some profit. Just like a businessman, another businessman, they first of all make some connection, that “You are supplier. I am…” I mean to say. What is called? “Receiver.” Because a businessman, one businessman sells. Another businessman purchases. “So you are purchaser. I am seller.” So our agreement is made that “I shall supply you. You shall purchase.” This is called relationship. In every dealings we must have first of all the relationship. Then, when there is relationship established, then next stage is to deal according to that relationship. And when the dealing is perfect, then we get the desired result. So either in business field or in other relationship, friend and friend, wife and husband, master and servant, father and son… You can take any, accept any form of relationship. There must be a standard of dealing, and there must be a result out of that. This is called Bhāgavata-dharma. You must know what is your position, you must know what is God, and you must know what is your relationship with God. Then you must deal with God in that way. Then you get the desired result. This is perfection of life. It is called bhāgavata-dharma. 

So what is our relationship with God? I have already explained that the six opulences are there in God in full and the same six opulences are in me, but in particle. Just like the ocean water. It contains tons, millions of tons salt, ocean water, salt. You take a drop of ocean water. You analyze. You will find a grain of salt also. The salt is there also. Similarly, as it is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā, what is our relationship? Relationship is 

mamaivāṁśo jīva-bhūtaḥ
jīva-loke sanātanaḥ
manaḥ ṣaṣṭhānīndriyāṇi
prakṛti-sthāni karṣati
[Bg. 15.7]plugin-autotooltip__small plugin-autotooltip_bigBhagavad-gītā As It Is 15.7

The living entities in this conditioned world are My eternal, fragmental parts. Due to conditioned life, they are struggling very hard with the six senses, which include the mind.

Kṛṣṇa says that “All the living entities, they are My part and parcels, but manaḥ ṣaṣṭhānīndriyāṇi, due to their contaminated mind, they are struggling hard in this material nature.” We are struggling very hard as part and parcel. Just like this hand is part and parcel of my body. So what is the real function of the hand? It must always remain attached with this body. Then it is in healthy condition. If the hand is cut off from this body, you may call that “This is Swamiji’s hand,” you may call it, but it has no use. So long this hand is attached with my body, if there is some pain, I can spend thousands of dollars to relieve that pain. The same hand, when it is cut off from the body, if you trample with your legs my hand, I don’t care for it. Similarly, we living entities, we are also part and parcel of God, but because we have separated ourself, our relationship with God, therefore we are being trampled own by the materialistic laws, the material laws—always pinching, so many miseries. But we have become so fool that we do not realize that this is a platform where simply miseries are being experienced. That is called māyā. 

We are always in miseries, but if I ask you or you ask me “How are you,” I will say, “Oh, it is very nice.” What is very nice? We are sitting here. The heat is so extensive, everyone is feeling inconvenienced. But if you ask me, “Sir, how are you,” I will say, “It is very nice.” This is called māyā. We are always under some tribulation, always, either now it is very hot, it is warm, and after few months, it will be too cold. So either you are in cold or you are in heat. So these are miseries. If not heat and cold, it is all right, atmosphere, oh, there is something, mental misery. If there is no mental misery, there is some bodily misery. If there is no mental misery, bodily misery or natural misery, then somebody must… At least, there is mosquito misery, the bug misery. So if you analyze your life, it is full of miseries, full of miseries. 

Therefore, we are part and parcel of the Supreme Lord, but because we have separated ourselves from God… Because we are speaking of God… Very… People are interested, “Oh, the Swamiji is speaking of God. God is dead.” This is nonsense. You are living. “Everyone is living. Simply God has died.” You see? This is, this philosophy is going on. Therefore bhāgavata-dharma, one has to study from the very beginning of life. Otherwise we shall learn this philosophy, that “God is dead.” So Prahlāda Mahārāja says, kaumāra acaret prajno dharmān bhāgavatan iha [SB 7.6.1]plugin-autotooltip__small plugin-autotooltip_bigŚrīmad Bhāgavatam 7.6.1

Prahlāda Mahārāja said: One who is sufficiently intelligent should use the human form of body from the very beginning of life—in other words, from the tender age of childhood—to practice the activities of devotional service, giving up all other engagements. The human body is most rarely achieved, and although temporary like other bodies, it is meaningful because in human life one can perform devotional service. Even a slight amount of sincere devotional service can give one complete perfection.
. This occupation of dealing with the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Bhagavān, should be learned from the very beginning of life. Just like one of our student comes, Eddy[?]. He is always with his father, and he is learning bhāgavata-dharma. He is also bowing down, seeing his father and other Godbrothers of his father. He is learning. We also learned in that way, in our childhood. So from the very childhood one should be taught what is bhāgavata-dharma. Otherwise there will be unwanted population, and the world will become a hell. 

Just like at the present moment we practically experience. Everywhere there is discontentment, there is scarcity. Just like from India we thought that “When I go to America and other western countries, I will see that every man is very rich man and every man has got a very nice apartment and is enjoying life.” But actually, when I come here I see that there are many poor men, there are many miserable men here also. Only the proportion is different, but the actual fact is the same, either in India or in America or in Canada or in everywhere. The same thing. Proportion different. Therefore, if we want… Prahlāda Mahārāja says that 

kaumāra acaret prajno
dharmān bhāgavatan iha
durlābhaṁ manusam janma
tad apy adhruvam arthadam
[SB 7.6.1]plugin-autotooltip__small plugin-autotooltip_bigŚrīmad Bhāgavatam 7.6.1

Prahlāda Mahārāja said: One who is sufficiently intelligent should use the human form of body from the very beginning of life—in other words, from the tender age of childhood—to practice the activities of devotional service, giving up all other engagements. The human body is most rarely achieved, and although temporary like other bodies, it is meaningful because in human life one can perform devotional service. Even a slight amount of sincere devotional service can give one complete perfection.

This Prahlāda Mahārāja learned this bhāgavata-dharma from Nārada Muni from the womb of his mother. When he was living within the womb of his mother like this… Perhaps you have seen the child in the womb. At least, you have seen in the photograph. So he was lying there within the womb of his mother. And Nārada Muni instructed his mother about this bhāgavata-dharma, and the child… This bhāgavata-dharma is, therefore, without any impediment. Just like one child, four years old, he is associating with us, so he is also getting the same benefit as his father. It is so nice thing. It is not that because he is child he is not getting any benefit. Simply by associating with the devotees, he is getting so much profit, incalculable. Incalculable. 

The bhāgavata-dharma, Prahlāda Mahārāja says, kaumāra acaret… If not a very small child, but as soon as one is four or five years old… Kaumāra means from five years old to fifteen years. That period of life is called kaumāra. So one should learn this bhāgavata-dharma from the beginning. Just like we send boys, children, to schools for training, similarly, the children should be trained for learning bhāgavata-dharma. Unfortunately, nobody is interested. He was… Prahlāda Mahārāja also was in difficulty. His father… Even his father was against him because he was teaching this bhāgavata-dharma, and the teachers were complaining to his father, “Sir, your son, we do not know how he has learned this bhāgavata-dharma. He is simply teaching. As soon as he gets some opportunity he makes this education of God consciousness, or Kṛṣṇa consciousness, to other children. So what to do with your son?” The father asked, “Where you have learned this? Tell me.” Those topics will come later on. Now here Prahlāda Mahārāja, as soon as he saw some opportunity that the teacher is out of the class, he will call all the boys, “My dear friends, this bhāgavata-dharma, this understanding God consciousness or Kṛṣṇa consciousness, should be learned from the very beginning of life.” “Why? Let us play. Why bhāgavata-dharma now? All right, if there is Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, when we shall get older or when the time of death will be nearing, we can study at that time bhāgavata-dharma.” 

But Prahlāda Mahārāja said, “No.” Kaumāra. Why kaumāraṁ? Now, durlabhaṁ mānuṣaṁ janma. You are calculating that when you’ll get old, at that time you shall try to understand what is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. But what is the guarantee that you are not already old enough? Who can say? The next moment I can die. Old age means nearing death, but there is no such guarantee that one shall die at eighty years old or hundred years old. Death can take place at any moment. Therefore a sane man will understand that we are always old enough because there is no guarantee. Durlabhaṁ. And this mānuṣaṁ janma, this human form of life is called durlabha. Durlabha means very rarely obtained, after many, many evolutionary process, either you take the anthropologists’ theory how human body has developed or you take from Vedic literature. But the difference is that anthropologists, they say, “There is no soul. The organic matter is developing in different ways.” But Vedic literature says it is not the organic matter, but it is the soul. The soul is a person, is individual, and he is transforming different types of bodies from one body to another, transmigrating. This we have explained several times. 

Just we were experiencing. This child who is playing, he is now, he has got a small body. Similarly, when he will get a body like his father, he has to change so many bodies, so many bodies. So the body will change but he, the soul, will remain the same. And now, at the childhood, or in the womb of his mother, or when the body is just like his father, or when the body is just like his grandfather—the same thing, soul, will continue. So therefore soul is permanent and the body is changing. This is explained in the Bhagavad-gītā. Antavanta ime dehā nityasyoktāḥ śarīriṇaḥ [Bg. 2.18]plugin-autotooltip__small plugin-autotooltip_bigBhagavad-gītā As It Is 2.18

Only the material body of the indestructible, immeasurable and eternal living entity is subject to destruction; therefore, fight, O descendant of Bharata.
. This body is temporary. Temporary. Either this childhood body or boyhood body or youthhood body or mature body or old body, they are all temporary. Every moment, every second, we are changing. But the soul within the body, that is permanent. So this body, Prahlāda Mahārāja says, durlabhaṁ mānuṣaṁ janma: “Now, after many many births…” 

Perhaps you do not know. There are nine million types of aquatic animals. So we have to pass through all these nine millions. Jalajā nava-lakṣāni sthāvarā lakṣa-viṁśati. And lakṣa-viṁśati, 200,000’s. I am sorry, not nine millions; 900,000. And then two millions species of plant life, vegetable life, we have to pass through. Jalajā nava-lakṣāni sthāvarā lakṣa-viṁśati, kṛmayo rudra-sāṅkhyakāḥ. And eleven hundred thousands species of worms and reptiles. Sthāvarā lakṣa-viṁśati kṛmayo rudra, pakṣiṇāṁ daśa-lakṣaṇam. And there are ten hundred thousands of species of the birds. So similarly, there are three million types of four-legged animals. And the human species of life are only 400,000 species, or types, as you say. In this way the total is 8,400,000’s of types of bodies, and we have to pass through, by transmigration, from one body to another, another, another, another. Now we have got this civilized form of body. Prahlāda Mahārāja says that it is very rare opportunity. We should not misuse this body just like other animals. Then it will be our foolishness. 

Durlabhaṁ mānuṣaṁ janma tad apy adhruvam. When we have got this human form of body, then we shall live more than the cats and dogs? No. Adhruvam. Adhruvam means this body also will not exist. Adhruvam. It is not eternal. This soul is eternal, but the body is not eternal. But although it is not eternal, the distinction between this body and the animal body is that although it will not exist… As a dog’s body will not exist or a cat’s body will not exist or the bird’s body will not exist, similarly, this body also will not exist. That’s a fact. But arthadam: but if you like, you can attain the highest perfection of life in this body. That is the opportunity. Therefore, from the very beginning, a child should be given opportunity how to make his life perfect. That is Vedic civilization. 

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam says that “One should not become a father, one should not become a mother, one should not become a spiritual master, one should not become a guardian, one should not become a husband…” In this way they have given a long list. Who? Who is that one? “One who cannot give his dependents relief from death.” Samupeta-mṛtyuḥ. Na mocayed yaḥ samupeta-mṛtyuḥ: “One who cannot make free his dependents.” What is that freedom? “Freedom from the cycle of birth and death.” He should not become a father or mother or spiritual master, like that. And Prahlāda Mahārāja is also instructing in this way, that “This human form body should be utilized fully for understanding our real position, our relationship with God, and our transaction, our dealings, and the basis of our relationship with God, and what is the real goal of life.” So Caitanya Mahāprabhu has said that the real goal of life is premā pum-artho mahān, prema, to attain love. Of course, in this material world, so many things are going on in the name of love. But actually there is no love. They are all lust. But going on in trade in the name of love. Love is possible only with Kṛṣṇa, or God. Premā pum-artho mahān. So Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s… Not any other thing. 

Dharma artha kāma mokṣa (SB 4.8.41plugin-autotooltip__small plugin-autotooltip_bigŚrīmad Bhāgavatam 4.8.41

Any person who desires the fruits of the four principles religiosity, economic development, sense gratification and, at the end, liberation, should engage himself in the devotional service of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, for worship of His lotus feet yields the fulfillment of all of these.
, Cc. Ādi 1.90plugin-autotooltip__small plugin-autotooltip_bigŚrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Ādi-līlā 1.90

The darkness of ignorance is called kaitava, the way of cheating, which begins with religiosity, economic development, sense gratification and liberation.
). Generally, people understand eating, sleeping, mating and fearing. That is the lowest grade of life. A little higher grade of life, they try to understand about some religious principle, and they are generally become religious for some gain, some material gain. Just like in the churches or in the temples they go. They ask some benefit from God, “O God, give us our daily bread.” Or somebody goes to temple, asks some benefit. So dharma, artha, kāma. Why they ask some benefit? Now, just to satisfy their senses, that’s all. They have no other aim. Dharma artha kāma and mokṣa. And when they are dissatisfied or frustrated in sense gratification, then mokṣa, they want to become one with God. So dharmārtha-kāma-mokṣa [SB 4.8.41]plugin-autotooltip__small plugin-autotooltip_bigŚrīmad Bhāgavatam 4.8.41

Any person who desires the fruits of the four principles religiosity, economic development, sense gratification and, at the end, liberation, should engage himself in the devotional service of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, for worship of His lotus feet yields the fulfillment of all of these.
. These are the general demands. The lower class of men, they are simply demands of the body, something eating, something eating, defending and mating. And the higher class, little elevated, they are after religiosity and some material gain and sense gratification, or utmost, to become one with the Supreme. But they have no other idea generally. But Caitanya Mahāprabhu says, “No, above that there is another thing.” That is prema, to love God. That is transcendental. 

So Kṛṣṇa consciousness is the topmost, topmost knowledge how to love God and thereby enjoy life. Because we want to love. Unfortunately The other day I was instructing my students that “You just get yourself married.” Now, they were confused. Somebody said, “Where to get a nice girl?” Just see. Everyone wants to love, but frustration. The girls will say, “Where is a nice boy?” So the tendency of love is there in everywhere, either in animal or in man, but the lovable object is missing. Missing. That is Kṛṣṇa. If you try to love Kṛṣṇa, then your life will be fulfilled: “Oh, here is lovable object.” Premā pum-artho mahān. Therefore Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu is considered to be most munificent personality. Namo mahā-vadānyāya kṛṣṇa-prema-pradāya te [Cc. Madhya 19.53]plugin-autotooltip__small plugin-autotooltip_bigŚrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya-līlā 19.53

"O most munificent incarnation! You are Kṛṣṇa Himself appearing as Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya Mahāprabhu. You have assumed the golden color of Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī, and You are widely distributing pure love of Kṛṣṇa. We offer our respectful obeisances unto You.
. Oh, Rūpa Gosvāmī is offering Him his obeisances, “My dear Lord, You are the most magni…, munificent…” [break] Why? Kṛṣṇa-prema-pradāya te: “You are distributing love of God, love of Kṛṣṇa.” Kṛṣṇa-prema-pradāya. So we want to love somebody, but we are being frustrated. But if you try to love Kṛṣṇa, either as master or as friend or as the Supreme or as husband or lover There are so many relationships. Just try to establish, find out, what is the relationship with Kṛṣṇa, and this science is being taught in the matter of Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Thank you very much. Any questions? [break] 

Yamunā: …those disciples [indistinct] other[?] disciples of the spiritual master? 

Prabhupāda: Yes. Every relationship… Just like I have given you example, business relationship. So if you want to establish some business relationship, there must be a broker. You see? If you want to establish a relationship with some girl, there must be a negotiator. Of course, in your country it is very free. In India it is no… There is no free love. There is a negotiator, either privately or through the parent. So in every transaction there is a negotiator. So spiritual master is the negotiator. He is the broker. Of course, without any brokerage, but he is supposed to be the broker or the transparent medium. My Guru Mahārāja used to say, “the transparent media, via media.” Just like my eyes are not very perfect, so I am using this transparent via media to see, similarly, because we have forgotten our relationship with Kṛṣṇa, or God, so we have to see through the transparent via media of spiritual master. Otherwise it is very difficult. That is the process. That is the process. Therefore Bhāgavata, er, Vedic literature gives you injunction, tad-vijñānārthaṁ sa gurum evābhigacchet [MU 1.2.12]. Tad-vijñānārtham. Tat means spiritual or transcendental. If you want to understand about transcendental science, then tad-vijñānārtham, in order to understand that transcendental love, so gurum eva. Eva. Gurum means a spiritual master. Eva. Eva means must. And gacchet. Gacchet also, it is used in the obli…, or the imperative, “must.” And who is a guru? Who is a spiritual master? That is also defined there. Otherwise he will be puzzled where to go. “All right, I am ready to go to a spiritual master to understand the transcendental science, but who is a guru?” Everyone will be ready: “Oh, I am your guru. I am a spiritual master.” No. There are signs. What is that? Śrotriyam. 

Śrotriyam means one who has perfectly heard the science of God from authoritative sources in disciplic succession. That is the qualification. Śrotriyam, and brahma-niṣṭham means not that simply he has heard, but the result is that he is firmly fixed up in God consciousness. These two qualifications. You have to find out that whether this man is coming from disciplic succession, śrotriyam… Just like in the Bhagavad-gītā it is said, evaṁ paramparā-prāptam: [Bg. 4.2]plugin-autotooltip__small plugin-autotooltip_bigBhagavad-gītā As It Is 4.2

This supreme science was thus received through the chain of disciplic succession, and the saintly kings understood it in that way. But in course of time the succession was broken, and therefore the science as it is appears to be lost.
“By this disciplic succession, this science of Bhagavad-gītā was learned.” So you have to approach the spiritual master who is coming down from that disciplic succession. Then he is bona fide. Not only… He may be coming, but if he has not understood, then simply accepting will not do. Then the next symptom is śrotriyaṁ brahma-niṣṭham [MU 1.2.12]. Brahma-niṣṭham means he is firmly fixed up. Nobody can deviate from his point of steadiness. These are the general. There are many other definition in different… And the disciple also, he must have also qualification to approach a spiritual master. It is not that because you have got a bona fide spiritual master, therefore you will be benefited. You must be also qualified. 

What is that qualification? What is the disciple’s qualification? That is stated in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. Tasmād guruṁ prapadyeta jijñāsuḥ śreya uttamam [SB 11.3.21]. Śreya uttamam. Everyone is engaged for some temporary benefit, everyone in this world, you will find. Everyone is very busy. When you say, “Please come to our temple,” “Sir, I am very busy.” What is his business? The business is eating, sleeping, and mating. That’s all, his business. 

nidrayā hriyate naktaṁ
vyavāyena ca vā vayaḥ
divā cārthehayā rājan
kuṭumba-bharaṇena vā
[SB 2.1.3]plugin-autotooltip__small plugin-autotooltip_bigŚrīmad Bhāgavatam 2.1.3

The lifetime of such an envious householder is passed at night either in sleeping or in sex indulgence, and in the daytime either in making money or maintaining family members.

What is the engagement? At night, sleeping or sex indulgence, and at daytime, “Where is money? Where is money?” And if there is money, then “Where to purchase these things?” Go to the store. Go to the shop. Finish. So that sort of inquiry engagement is not a qualification for understanding spiritual science. One should be inquisitive. Jijñāsuḥ śreya uttamam. One should be inquisitive to understand what is the highest benefit of life. And that is the beginning of Vedānta-sūtra, athāto brahma jijñāsā. And the highest benefit of life is to understand the spiritual science or the supreme spirit, athāto brahma, brahma-jijñāsā. So before establishing our relationship with God, we have to establish our relationship with the negotiator. If that relationship is sound and secure, then your realization of God is secure and sound. There is no doubt about it. If, fortunately, one gets a bona fide spiritual master and if he follows the instruction rigidly, then his God realization is guaranteed. There is no doubt about it. 

Devotee: [indistinct] 

Prabhupāda: Yes. Yes. Kṛṣṇa is always with you. When you are anxious for Kṛṣṇa, or God, then Kṛṣṇa will give you direction that “You please go to that person who is My representative.” So Kṛṣṇa will help you from within and without. Therefore spiritual master is supposed to be Kṛṣṇa’s representative from without, and Kṛṣṇa is speaking within yourself. So Kṛṣṇa is ready to help you from within and without provided you are anxious to get that help. Yes? 

Devotee: [indistinct] …anxious to learn from the spiritual master? 

Prabhupāda: Certainly. Unless he is anxious to learn, what is the use of going to spiritual master? There is no need. That I already said. Jijñāsuḥ śreya uttamam. One must be very inquisitive. But inquisitive about what? For the supreme benefit. He should be inquisitive to learn the supreme. Then he has the necessity of searching out or approaching a spiritual master. If there is no such demand, then there is no necessity of going to a spiritual master or accepting a spiritual master. A spiritual master should not be accepted as a matter of phobia[?]. Just like you keep some pet dog or cat, similarly if you want to keep one spiritual master, there is no profit. You see? You must be qualified to in…, inquisitive to understand the spiritual science, and the spiritual master should be also qualified to answer your inquisitiveness. Then the relationship is nice, not one-sided. Yes? 

Devotee: Swamiji, you said… [indistinct] …after death, when… 

Prabhupāda: Just like a boy, his father is very rich man, but he has left his home, so he is separated. The same boy, when he comes to his senses, “Oh, my father is so rich, and I am simply suffering for want of money. Let me go back to my father.” And the father is always anxious to receive the boy. So he goes back to his father. The father says, “Yes, my dear boy, please come. I was so much anxious.” So this separation means the father and the son relationship cannot be separated. But the son’s rebellion to the father is separated. Similarly, our relationship with God cannot be separated. God is supplying us everything, although we think, “There is no God, God is dead,” and all nonsense you may say. But it is due to God’s grace that you are eating daily. That’s a fact. Either you say, “God give us our daily bread,” or you don’t say, God is anxious to supply you bread. He is so kind because you are His son. [end]