Paramānanda & Satyabhāmā’s Wedding

Type:
Lecture
Date:
July 22
Year:
1968
Place:
Montreal

Prabhupāda: Gurudāsa, you don’t feel? 

Gurudāsa: Yes, very good. 

Prabhupāda: This last verse… It is not last. It is the third of Brahma-sūtra, Brahma-saṁhitā. Ālola-candraka-lasad-vanamālya-vaṁśī-ratnaṅgadaṁ praṇaya-keli-kalā-vilāsam [Bs. 5.31]. This verse… There are about one hundred verses in the Brahma-saṁhitā, and this verse, I think, about thirty-eighth verse… So description of Govinda, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The picture is here. So Govinda is not impersonal. And it is distinctly stated here that ālola-candraka-lasad-vanamālya-vaṁśī: [Bs. 5.31] “The Lord is decorated with flower garland, and He has got a flute in His hands.” And praṇaya-keli-kalā-vilāsam: “And He is engaged in transcendental, conjugal love, Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa.” So this love which is in our experience within this material world, man and woman, it is not unnatural. It is in God also there. And the Brahma-sūtra, Vedānta-sūtra, in the beginning says that “Who is Brahman, the Supreme Person or the Absolute Truth?” Athāto brahma jijñāsā, questioning “What is that Absolute Truth?” The answer is janmādy asya yataḥ: [SB 1.1.1] “The Absolute Truth is that from whom everything emanates.” Very simple definition. That means the fountainhead of everything, the source of everything. Therefore here in this material world we see that the attraction for man and woman, woman’s attraction for man, man’s attraction for woman, is so prominent. Not only in human society, but in other than: animal society, cat society, dog society, bird society, there is always the attraction, man and woman, or male and female. Why? The answer is in the Vedānta-sūtra: janmādy asya yataḥ [SB 1.1.1]. Because it is there in the Absolute Truth. Without being present in the Absolute Truth, how it can be manifested in the relative truth? 

This world is called relative world. It is not Absolute. Relative. Difference, two, duality. We cannot understand a man without knowing a woman. We cannot understand father without understanding a son or a mother. Relativity. But in Absolute world, everything is one. So this love between male and female, conjugal love, we Vaiṣṇava philosophers… Because everyone, according to Vedic system, everyone has to follow the Vedānta-sūtra. There are two section of philosophers in India, approved; not, I mean to say, manufactured philosopher, mental speculators, but actually those who are counted valuable. There are two classes of philosophers, namely the impersonalist and personalist. The Vaiṣṇava, they accept that the Absolute Truth is person, and the Māyāvādī philosophers, they say that Absolute Truth is impersonal. That is the difference. Otherwise their process of other paraphernalia, execution of understanding, is almost the same. Now our Vaiṣṇava philosopher’s argument is that how the Absolute Truth can be impersonal? Because here, in this world, in our experience, we see everything personal. So unless the personality, the individuality, or the individual attraction is there in the Absolute Truth, how they can be represented here in the relative truth? 

So apart from that argumental point of view, our presentation is that this conjugal love between man and woman is not unnatural. It is quite natural because it is in the Absolute Truth, as we find from Vedic description, that the Absolute Truth, Personality of Godhead, is engaged in conjugal loving affairs, Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa. But the same Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa love matter has permeated through matter. Therefore it is perverted reflection. Here in this material world, the so-called love is not actual love. It is lust. Here the male and female are attracted not by love but by lust. So in this Kṛṣṇa consciousness society, because we are trying to approach the Absolute Truth, the lust propensity has to be converted into pure love. That is the proposal. So in India still, amongst the strict followers of Vedic principles, this lust affair is adjusted spiritually. What is that? The boys and girls, they are not allowed free mixing before marriage. Especially… Both the boys… Here, one of our students, he was in India, and he tried to talk with a young girl on the street, and he [she] was insulted. He was surprised. Because the practice is there that no young boy or young girl can talk with… Of course, now it is different. Even up to our young time we have seen that without being married, no girl, no boy, could mix together. So this lust affair, this attraction, was little bit controlled. The father, the parents of the girl, and the parents of the boy would select. They had no personal selection. And that selection was made very scientifically, taking the horoscope of the girl, taking the horoscope of the boy, and calculating, “How this boy and girl will amalgamate? How their lives will be happy?” So many things, they were considered. And when everything was settled, then the marriage would take place. That is the system of old Indian, Vedic principle. And so far free love is concerned, as we understand, that was allowed only very in high circles, princely order. Because the girls were educated and grown up and she was given to select her husband, but not directly. We find in so many historical evidences from the Vedic literature that the girl used to express her desire that “I want to marry with that boy,” and the father… This was amongst the kṣatriyas, the princely order, not with others. And the father would give a challenge, a bet. And if somebody will come and become victorious, then the girl would be offered. That was in special cases. 

Anyway in this age, marriage, according to our Vaiṣṇava principles, marriage is allowed because there is male, there is female. Why they should not unite? But not illegally. So when I came in this country in New York, the boys and girls, they were coming, and some of them offered me to become disciples. So I saw that most of the boys and girls, they are keeping the boyfriend, girlfriend. So I requested them that if you want