Discussion with Guests

Type:
Room Conversation
Date:
December 23
Year:
1969
Place:
Boston

Prabhupāda: That you have to test. Now I have given you this one formula. By following any guru or any principle, if you actually develop your love of God, then it is nice. Otherwise it is useless waste of time. That is the test. But they, so far I know, these yogis, they are themselves God. They say that everyone is God. And who is dog? So I think it is not very congenial. How everyone can be God? Then what is the meaning of God? 

Guest (1): [inaudible] 

Prabhupāda: If everyone is God then what is the meaning of God? You must give definition of God. If you do not, then you do not know what is God. Therefore you are asking… 

Guest (1): [inaudible] 

Prabhupāda: So it is a great science. It is not bogus propaganda. And based on Bhagavad-gītā and Vedic literatures. Not that it is imaginary. No. There is…[inaudible], realized persons. There is chance of…[inaudible]. So if you are here now, take advantage of this great science. And we are prepared to submit… [many people talking] 

Guest [2] [Indian man]: I want to love everyone. 

Prabhupāda: Then you… That is bogus. You cannot love everybody. If you love God, then you can love everybody. Because God is everything. So just like if you pour water on the root… 

Guest (2): If God is everything, then why don’t you, not loving one by one? Why…? 

Prabhupāda: Yes. But you… That is… Just like if you love one tree, then you have to pour water on the root. Not that every leaf. If you want to maintain your body, then you have to supply foodstuff in the stomach. Not to your eyes. Not to your ear. When you get a nice cake, you don’t put it here. You put it here. Why? That is the process. There are nine holes in your body. Why do you put in this hole? 

Guest (2): Yes, but… 

Prabhupāda: First of all answer this. 

Guest (2): Well, I agree with you, but… 

Prabhupāda: You have to follow the real process; then you’ll get it. That is love.[?] 

Guest (2): You have to go to the root but in the meantime we don’t ignore everything else. I mean… 

Prabhupāda: If you ignore the root and you take the leaf you simply spoil your time. 

Guest (2): No, but what I wanted to say is that why can’t love of the God and love of matter go and rise up to…? 

Prabhupāda: Yes, if you love God, you love matter and God… 

Because matter is energy of God. 

Guest (2): Then you said that the technique, that you decide as to whether you are succeeding is, you’ll find out whether a technique is the best or not when your love for God will increase and love for matter will decrease. 

Prabhupāda: No. In relationship with God… What is matter? Matter is another manifestation of God’s energy. Just like if you love yourself, your body, then naturally you love your finger, the part of the body. Therefore God is the supreme whole. If you love God, then you can understand that I have to love everybody. 

Guest [3] [Indian man]: What is God? 

Prabhupāda: What is God? God… Can you define God? 

Guest (3): No. 

Guest (2): I think the trouble is… God is this… 

Guest (3): Is God supposed to be energy or is God supposed to be… 

Prabhupāda: Energy is God’s energy. Just like sun and sunshine. Sunshine is the energy of sun. Just try to understand. The energy, sunshine, and the sun is not different. But still if you are satisfied with the energy sunshine, it is not sun. Try to understand this philosophy. 

Guest (3): Are you saying that energy is God? God is energy? 

Prabhupāda: Energy, being nondifferent from God, in one sense, it is God, but energy is not God at the same time. The same example. Just like sun and the sunshine. Sunshine is the energy of the sun, but sunshine, if it enters in your room, if you think that “Sun has entered into my room,” that is wrong. But sunshine is not different from the sun. Similarly… That is explained in the Bhagavad-gītā, mayā tatam idaṁ sarvaṁ jagat avyakta-mūrtinā, mat-sthāni… [Bg. 9.4]. [break] “Everything is resting in Me.” That means in His energy. But not that everything is God. 

Guest (3): It would appear that to claim that you can reach eternal bliss or I don’t know what else you might call it, by just chanting, it seems to be too easy. 

Prabhupāda: That is one process of self-realization. There are different process of self-realization. For this age, when people are less intelligent, this process is right. 

Guest (2): …what you are doing by chanting is kind of… 

Prabhupāda: You chant and you will understand. If you have no child, then how can you understand what is the labor of producing a child? 

Guest (3): But then it is like saying that if you haven’t ever leaped into a well, you don’t know what will happen to you if you leap into a well. 

Prabhupāda: First of all you do not know yourself. The first ignorance is that you are identifying yourself with this body, which you are not. First of all try to understand yourself, then you will understand what is God. You do not know yourself. 

Guest (3): But I am God, right? I am God. You are God too. 

Prabhupāda: You are dog. 

Guest (3): But you are me and I am you. We are both God. Right? 

Prabhupāda: No, no. 

Guest (3): Why not? 

Prabhupāda: You are not God because God… You do not know what is the meaning of God. What do you mean by God? First of all define. 

Guest (3): Everything is God. 

Prabhupāda: If you apply that definition, then you are God. First of all define what is God. 

Guest (3): God is everything. God is it. 

Prabhupāda: That is not the definition. God is not everything. 

Guest (3): And it is God. It is all it. 

Prabhupāda: I say everything is God’s energy. Everything is not God. 

Guest (3): Everything is not God? 

Prabhupāda: Yes. Just like the same example I gave immediately that the sunshine and the sun. Sunshine is not different from the sun. 

Guest (2): How can the sun itself be different from it’s energy? Sunshine is energy, sun is energy, and both of them… 

Prabhupāda: No. This is an example. Sunshine is also energy. Everything material is an energy of the Lord. That’s all right. But I’m giving you the example that sunshine and the sun is one, but at the same time different, simultaneously. You cannot accept sunshine as the sun. Suppose you are in the sunshine, you cannot say that you are in the sun planet. 

Guest (3): But it’s all the same. 

Prabhupāda: No. Why all the same? Why all the same? 

Guest (3): Of course. It’s all the same. Sure. 

Prabhupāda: If you go to the sun, you… You cannot go. You have no imagination what is sun, although you see it. How can I say that sunshine and sun is all the same? 

Guest (3): No. You don’t have to have imagination. You have to have insight. That’s… That’s… 

Prabhupāda: What is that insight? Do you think that sunshine and sun, they can be, is one? 

Guest (3): Everything is the same. 

Prabhupāda: No, you cannot say that, that the temperature of the sun and the temperature of the sunshine is the same. 

Guest (2): No. But just because you have two different kinds of energies, why do you have to differentiate them? Essentially what he was trying to say… 

Prabhupāda: That is intelligence. That is intelligence. One energy is acting as cooling, and the same energy is acting as heating. Why do you say it is heat and it is cool? 

Guest (3): It’s all the same thing. Heat and cool is the same thing. 

Prabhupāda: Why do you say the same thing? It is not the same thing. 

Guest (2): Of course, it is the same thing. 

Guest (3): Everything is “it.” It’s all it. 

Prabhupāda: No. That is nonsense. Cold is cold, heat is heat. Only it is acting. You are talking on the material platform. You are not spiritual. You don’t talk nonsense. [laughter] No. We have got enough time. 

Guest (3): I’m not trying to argue with you. I’m just trying to understand, because from what I understand of it there is no difference between… 

Prabhupāda: Just try to understand… 

Guest (3): No wait. Wait. Just one moment. Cause and effect are all the same thing. 

Prabhupāda: No, no, no, no. 

Guest (3): Yes. Sure. 

Devotee: What do you mean they’re the same thing? 

Prabhupāda: This is cotton. The cause is cotton. Will you like to take cotton instead of the shirt? 

Guest (3): This is illusion. 

Prabhupāda: Not illusion. 

Guest (3): Sure. 

Prabhupāda: What do you mean by illusion? Don’t talk nonsense. [laughter] If I gave you lump of cotton instead of this shirt, will you accept it? 

Guest (3): I’m sorry. I don’t mean to argue. I am sorry. 

Prabhupāda: You are arguing? 

Guest (3): I don’t mean to argue with you. 

Prabhupāda: No. If I say… 

Guest (3): I’m trying to understand something, but you… 

Prabhupāda: This is cotton. This is cotton. Everyone knows. But if I give you a lump… 

Guest (3): Do you know that? Do you know that for a fact? How do you know this is not illusion? How do you know that? Do we know anything for sure? 

Prabhupāda: What proof is that is illusion? 

Guest (3): No, no. Wait. The burden of the proof lies on you because I don’t claim it is cotton. You claim it is cotton. So… 

Prabhupāda: How do you say it is not cotton. First of all prove it. 

Guest (3): Initially… 

Prabhupāda: No! First of all prove it that it is not cotton. 

Guest (3): No, no. One moment. You claim that it is cotton, therefore the burden of the proof lies on you inasmuch as you have to prove… 

Prabhupāda: Everyone will say it is cotton. Everyone will say it is cotton. That is proof. Everyone will accept this is cotton, made of cotton. Who will say this is not made of cotton? But if I give you a lump of cotton instead of shirt will you accept it? 

Guest (3): I apologize. I don’t mean to argue with you. I’m just trying to… 

Prabhupāda: No, why not? 

Guest (1): You speak of God and matter and as matter being the thing which keeps us from seeing God. It seems to me it’s something like pride and delusions, myself, and something like this, and ideas that I have. 

Prabhupāda: You may have ideas, but I don’t agree with your idea. If… I say that anything take it material or spiritual they are different energy of God. Matter is not different from God as it is energy of God, but still matter is not God. 

Guest (1): Yes. 

Prabhupāda: Just try to understand this point, that whatever we see, that is distribution of energy of God. But energy and the energetic is not the same. But they are same as…simultaneously same also because you cannot separate. Just like fire and heat. You cannot separate heat from fire but heat is not fire. Just try to understand this. Heat is not fire although heat and fire cannot be separated. 

Guest (1): But I don’t think I’m thinking of myself as matter but I’m also not thinking of myself as… 

Prabhupāda: No. You are not matter. You are spirit. Your body is matter. You are also one of the energies. You are spiritual energy and your body is material energy. And because you are spiritual energy, therefore your intimate relationship with the spirit soul or the Supreme Soul… That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness or God consciousness. The body will change, but you, as spirit soul, you will not change. You are eternal. Na hanyate hanyamāne śarīre [Bg. 2.20]. Body being changed, that is not changed. That is eternal. So we have to pick up our eternal relationship with God. That is missing. 

Guest (1): I’d like to know how physical things that are done, as chanting or dancing or… Are there no…? If you consider , as having any importance. How do these physical things affect our spiritual understanding? 

Prabhupāda: Physical… Just like a milk preparation. You take large quantity of milk, you get diarrhea. But the same milk, if it is prepared into yogurt, if you take it, your diarrhea will be cured. So physical things, when treated spiritually, it cures physical disease. 

Guest [4] [Indian man]: You said the approach to spiritual goal, through this way, Hare Kṛṣṇa Hare Rāma. Okay. Now there is another philosophy which has been preached by Ramakrishna and Vivekananda: “The service of man is the service of God.” 

Prabhupāda: And why not service of God service of man? 

Guest (4): No… 

Prabhupāda: First of all answer this. If service of man is service of God, why not service of God, service of man? 

Guest (4): Okay. It is one and the same thing because within man is within the soul, which is… 

Prabhupāda: So, one thing, suppose that service of God is service of man, then why should you go door to door serving … If God is service of man, if you say service of man is service of God, then service of God is service of man. 

Guest (4): Okay. Fine. 

Prabhupāda: That’s all. Now if by serving God I can serve whole humanity… 

Guest (4): That’s good. 

Prabhupāda: That’s good. But you, how many human beings you can serve? So my process is better. 

Guest (4): But I don’t know what is God, but I know man within which God is present, a part of God is present. 

Prabhupāda: That’s all right. That’s all right. That means we are, I mean to say for argument’s sake. If God is everything… 

Guest (4): We are the parts of God. 

Prabhupāda: That’s all right. Now parts of God, just like your finger is part of your body. Suppose if you wash your finger, does it mean you are taking bath whole body? 

Guest (4): No, no, no, no. No. 

Prabhupāda: Then how we can serve the whole by serving the part? 

Guest (4): Well, because it is a problem today, and right now, we country… 

Prabhupāda: Your argument is that service of man is service of God. That is your point. I say that if service of man is service of God, then service of God is service of man. First of all you yes or no, you say it. 

Guest (4): It is one and the same but because I don’t know God… 

Prabhupāda: Then we serve God. You serve men. That’s all. 

Guest (4): I don’t know God. That’s why… Which is present and which is a philosophy. That’s why… 

Prabhupāda: Now, philosophy,… Your argument is service of man is service of God. 

Guest (4): It is not my argument. It is argument of Ramakrishna and Vivekananda. 

Prabhupāda: Now you are representing Ramakrishna. You are representing Ramakrishna. That’s all. I take it. 

Guest (4): Because I am also in doubt about… I want to know the truth. 

Prabhupāda: The truth is… The example I have given you, that service of the body means service of the stomach. Service of the body does not mean service of the finger. 

Guest (4): Service of the body means the service of part of God because body is an embodiment of the… 

Prabhupāda: Now, I’ll give you the example. Suppose if you want to… Take the whole body. If you want to serve this body you must give food. So where to give the food? To the finger or to the stomach? Therefore God is the stomach. Supply food there and every part of the body will be full. 

Guest (4): Okay good. Stomach is the part of God. I don’t say he’s the whole of God. Part of God. Because… [several people are talking] 

Prabhupāda: All right. Car is waiting. 

Satsvarūpa: Come to the temple and ask any questions you have. 

Guest (4): Okay. Next time I go to Harvard I’ll just get… 

Prabhupāda: Thank you. I thank you for your questions. 

Guest (4): Oh, okay, fine. I’ll ask you again. [end]