matir na kṛṣṇe parataḥ svato vā
mitho ‘bhipadyeta gṛha-vratānām
adānta-gobhir viśatāṁ tamisraṁ
punaḥ punaś carvita-carvaṇānām
Adānta-gobhir viśatāṁ tamisram. Adānta means uncontrolled. Our materialistic life means we cannot control our senses and the mind. The mind is dictating that enjoy your senses in this way. What is this sound? [feedback] And our… We are enjoying our senses. Materialistic life means… [aside:] Stop that sound. Stop that. We don’t want it.
Śyāmasundara: Turn it off.
Prabhupāda: So materialistic life means sense gratification. This sense gratification process is going on life after life. So many varieties of life means different standard of sense gratification. Kṛṣṇa is so kind that he has given us full liberty to gratify our senses. Kṛṣṇa bhuliya jīva bhoga-vāñchā kare [Prema-vivarta]. We are part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa, but we are living entities, and because we are part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa, we have got all the desires of Kṛṣṇa in small particle. As our existence is a small particle… Just like, try to understand gold and a small particle of gold. So the small particle of gold has got all the qualities of the original gold. Just like sense gratification. Kṛṣṇa has got also propensity for sense gratification. He is the original sense gratifier, as it is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā: bhoktāraṁ yajña-tapasāṁ sarva-loka-maheśvaram. Supreme enjoyer. Wherefrom the enjoying spirit of us comes? Because it is there in Kṛṣṇa. Janmādy asya yataḥ . The Vedānta-sūtra says everything is originated from Kṛṣṇa. Para-brahman or the Absolute Truth means where everything is generated. That is Absolute Truth. Therefore our desire for sense gratification is from Kṛṣṇa.
Here is the perfect sense gratification, Kṛṣṇa and Rādhārāṇī. The same thing as here: young boys and girls, they try to enjoy senses. But where this propensity comes from? It is coming from Kṛṣṇa. Because we are part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa, the quality of sense gratification is there; therefore we, being part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa, the quality of sense gratification also there. But the difference is here we are trying to gratify our senses in the material world; therefore we are frustrated. Kṛṣṇa consciousness means that you gratify your senses in association with Kṛṣṇa. Then it is perfect. The same example: just like this finger, the finger. There is a nice sweetball or a nice foodstuff. The finger picks it up, but it cannot enjoy. It has to be…, the foodstuff has to be, given to the stomach, and then the finger also can enjoy. Similarly, we cannot gratify our senses directly, but when we join with Kṛṣṇa, when Kṛṣṇa enjoys, then we can enjoy. This is our position. The same example: the finger independently cannot eat anything, cannot enjoy the sweetball, nice sweetballs. The finger can pick it up and put it in the stomach, and the stomach enjoys, the finger enjoys. This is our position.
So we have to purify the propensity of sense gratification, materially. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Kṛṣṇa consciousness means,
sevanaṁ bhaktir ucyate
We have to be purified. What is that purification? That we cannot enjoy anything directly. We have to enjoy through Kṛṣṇa, prasādam. Just like we take prasādam. The nice foodstuff prepared, we don’t take directly. We take through Kṛṣṇa. First of all we offer to Kṛṣṇa and then take it. What is the difficulty? There is no difficulty. But you become purified. The eating process is the same, but if you eat directly, then you become materialistically encumbered. But if you offer to Kṛṣṇa and then take it, then you become free from all contamination of material life.
That is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā:
mucyante sarva kilbiṣaiḥ
bhuñjate te tv aghaṁ pāpā
ye pacanty ātma-kāraṇāt
Yajña-śiṣṭāśinaḥ santo. Santa, devotees, they take prasādam after offering to Kṛṣṇa. That is called yajña. Whatever you offer to Kṛṣṇa or Viṣṇu, that is called sacrifice, yajña. Kṛṣṇa’s or Viṣṇu’s another name is Yajña-pati. So yajña-śiṣṭāśinaḥ santo mucyante sarva-kilbiṣaiḥ. Whatever we do here within this material world, there is some sort of sinful activity. We do not know, imperceptibly. Just like killing of some animal is sinful activities. But even if we do not willingly kill some animal, when we are walking on the street, we are killing so many animals. When we are drinking water, in the, below the waterpot there are so many ants and microbes, they are being killed. When we ignite fire, there are so many small microbes, they also become burned into the fire. When you rub the pestle and mortar for rubbing spices, so many small microbes are killed. So we are responsible for that. Therefore, willingly or unwillingly, we are becoming entangled in so many sinful activities. Therefore the Bhagavad-gītā says, yajña-śiṣṭāśinaḥ santo mucyante sarva-kilbiṣaiḥ. If you take the remnants of foodstuff of yajña, after offering yajña, then you become free from all contamination. Otherwise, bhuñjate te tv aghaṁ pāpā ye pacanty ātma-kāraṇāt:“One who is cooking for eating personally without offering to Kṛṣṇa, he is simply all sinful resultant action.” This is our position.
Therefore here it is said that generally persons, adānta-gobhir viśatāṁ tamisram, because they cannot control their senses, adanta… Adanta means uncontrolled; go means senses. Viśatāṁ tamisram. Tamisram means this materialistic way of life, repeated birth and death in different species or forms. That is called tamisram. I do not know what is my next life, but next life is there. And before us there are so many species of life, and I can become one of them. I can become a demigod. I can become a cat. I can become a dog. I can become Brahman. There are so many forms of life. Sarva-yoniṣu kaunteya sambhavanti murtayo yaḥ. So next life I will have to accept one of the forms even if I do not want. Suppose if somebody says, “Next life, would you like to take the form of a dog or a hog?” I may not like it, but the law of nature, after giving up this body, when no more I am existing in this body, I have to accept another body according to my karma. That is in the hands of nature. Karmaṇā daiva-netreṇa . Daiva-netreṇa, “by superior supervision.” You cannot order that “Give me the body of Brahma. Give me the body of Indra or a king or something exalted.” That is not in your hand or in my hand. That will be judged by the superior agent of God, Kṛṣṇa, and you will have a body. Therefore it is our duty to prepare a body which will help me to go back to Kṛṣṇa. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness.
Therefore in this verse Prahlāda Mahārāja says, matir na kṛṣṇe. Kṛṣṇe matiḥ means Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Matiḥ means consciousness. Matir na kṛṣṇe parato svato vā. Parataḥ means taking instruction from others or taking instruction from guru. Nobody goes to take instruction from anyone unless one accepts a guru, or spiritual master. So even one has got nice guru, he cannot also get Kṛṣṇa consciousness if he has determined himself to remain in this material world. Matir na kṛṣṇe parato svato vā. And svato. Svataḥ means by mental speculation, judging, considering oneself personally. And parato means taking instruction from others. Matir na kṛṣṇe parato svato vā mitho ‘bhipad… Mitha, meeting. Just like we are talking about Kṛṣṇa consciousness in this meeting. Mitha, mitha means in assembly. So gṛha-vratānām. If our determination is that “I shall remain in this material world, I shall enjoy this material life,” then Kṛṣṇa consciousness is impossible. Matir na kṛṣṇe parato svato vā. Whose decision is that “I shall try to make my life in this material world,” as everyone is trying… All kinds of political, philanthropical, humanitarian activities are going on. For what purpose? To make material life happy and prosperous. That’s all. Which is not possible. One should understand it defintely that in the material world, however you may try to make adjustments, you cannot be happy. It is not possible.
So that we must first of all understand that we cannot be happy. The example I have given many times. Just like if you take out a fish from water, you can give it very comfortable, velvet lying down bedstead. The fish cannot be happy. It will die. Because the fish is the animal of water, it cannot be happy without water. Similarly, we are all spirit souls. Unless we are in spiritual life or in the spiritual world, we cannot be happy. That is our position. Everyone is trying for that spiritual realization, but he does not know. Therefore he is trying to be happy here in material condition. He is becoming frustrated, confused. So we have to withdraw this understanding that “We shall be very happy by making adjustment of this material world.” That we have to understand first of all. Then Kṛṣṇa consciousness will be effective. As I told last night, that our students, these boys and girls, they have been very much detestful in the materialistic way of life. Otherwise, they are coming of great nation. Just these American boys and girls, their fathers and their guardians, they are not poor. There is no scarcity of food or any material enjoyment. Why they are being frustrated? In India… You may say that India is poverty-stricken. They may be frustrated due to poverty, but why American boys and girls are being frustrated? That is the proof that materialistic way of life cannot make you happy. You may go on for some time to become happy, but happiness will never come from materialistic way of life. That’s a fact. So those who are trying to be happy by adjustment of materialistic way of life, they cannot take to Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Therefore these boys’ and girls’ frustration and confusion in the materialistic way of life is a qualification to come to Kṛṣṇa consciousness. They have got a good qualification, that they are coming to Kṛṣṇa consciousness.
There is a verse in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam: yasyāham anughṛnāmi hariṣye tad-dhanaṁ śanaiḥ. Sometimes Kṛṣṇa, to show some special favor to His devotee, He takes away his all material opulences. Dhanaṁ śanaiḥ. Just like the Pāṇḍavas. The Pāṇḍavas, they were bereft of their kingdom, although Kṛṣṇa was present there, Kṛṣṇa as their friend was present there. Still they became bereft of their kingdom, they lost their property, their wife was insulted, they were driven away to the forest—although Kṛṣṇa was there. This question was inquired by Yudhiṣṭhira Mahārāja to Kṛṣṇa, “How is that?” Indirectly he inquired that “You are our friend, and why we are put into such difficulty?” So Kṛṣṇa replied to Yudhiṣṭhira Mahārāja that “This is My special favor. This is My special favor.” Sometimes we do not, we cannot understand the special favor of Kṛṣṇa. So this frustration of these boys, these American boys or English boys, in the materialistic way of life is a good sign for accepting Kṛṣṇa consciousness. They are searching after something nice. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Of course, it does not require to become poor to take to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, but if anyone has the desire that “I will become spiritually advanced; at the same time I shall enjoy this material life,” that is not possible. These are two contradictory things. You have to become determined to be happy in spiritual life. That is real happiness. And this human form of life is specially meant for coming to that standard of spiritual life by tapasya, by voluntarily rejecting materialistic way of life. Therefore you will find in the history of India many great kings, even at very young age they left. Just like Bhārata Mahārāja. Bhārata Mahārāja, at the age of twenty-four years only, he left his young wife, young children and the whole empire, Bharatvarsa, and went to the forest for meditation. There are many instances.
So Prahlāda Mahārāja, when he was inquired by his father that “Who has taught you this Kṛṣṇa consciousness…?” Because he knew that “He is my son, king’s son. He does not go to mix with anyone else. He simply takes his lesson from the appointed teachers. How is that this boy, five years old only, and he is so much Kṛṣṇa conscious?” So he was surprised. He asked him that “How you have taken to this Kṛṣṇa consciousness?” The answer is that “My dear father, this Kṛṣṇa consciousness cannot be achieved by a person like you, whose vow is simply to enjoy this material world.” Hiraṇya. Hiraṇya means gold, and kaśipu means nice bed, very soft, cushioned bed. Hiraṇyakaśipu.
matir na kṛṣṇe parato svato vā
mitho ‘bhipadyeta gṛha-vratānām
adānta-gobhir viśatāṁ tamisraṁ
punaḥ punaś carvita-carvaṇānām
This materialistic way of life means chewing the chewed. Just like the father. Father knows that “I married, I work so hard to maintain my family, and it is very difficult to keep the high standard of living in this age. We have to work very hard. Still, I engage my son also in the same way. In spite of my very bad experience of materialistic way of life, still, I engage my son in the same way.” This is called punaḥ punaś carvita-carvaṇānām. Punaḥ punaś means “again and again.” Carvita: “chewing chewed things.” Just like sugarcane. One has chewed it, has taken its juice—it is thrown away in the street. And if somebody wants to taste it, “How it is sweet, let me see,” that is called chewing the chewed. Similarly, we have got very good experience about this materialistic way of life, hard struggle for life.
But the human society, it is also stated in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, human beings, they are born of the quality of passion. There are three qualities in the material world: goodness, passion and ignorance. Therefore they love to work very hard. And that very hard working is considered as happiness. That propensity of hard working… Just like in London you will see: everyone is engaged in hard working from the morning. You will see. All the buses and trucks, they are going with great speed, and people are going to the working office or factory. From morning til late night they are hard working, and it is called advancement of civilization. So some of them are frustrated. They don’t want it. They don’t want it. It will be frustration. Frustration. After all, it is hard work. Just like the hogs, they are working hard day and night for finding out “Where is stool, where is stool.” That is their business. Therefore in one sense, this kind of civilization is hogs’ and dogs’ civilization. It is not human civilization. Human civilization means he must be sober. He should be inquisitive. A human being should be inquisitive to know “Who I am? Why I am put into this condition to work very hard to get a few breads only? Why I am this uncomfortable situation? Wherefrom I have come? Where I have to go?” These are inquiries. These inquiries are called brahma-jijñāsā. The Vedānta-sūtra begins, athāto brahma jijñāsā: “A human being should be inquisitive to know these things: ‘Who I am? Wherefrom I have come? Where I have to go? Why I am put into this uncomfortable position?’ ”
So Kṛṣṇa consciousness is for them who have become detestful of this material world. They are good candidates for developing Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Then the inquiry may be that “What for these men are working so hard? What is their goal of life?” That is answered in the next verse by na te viduḥ svārtha-gatiṁ hi viṣṇum. These people are working so hard because they do not know actually what is the goal of life. Na te viduḥ. Viduḥ means knowing; na means not. These people, they do not know what is actually the goal of life. Na te viduḥ svārtha-gatim. Everyone says that “I am looking after my interests,” but he does not know what is his interest. That he does not know. Na te viduḥ svārtha-gatiṁ hi viṣṇum . He should know that his real interest is to make his progress toward Viṣṇu, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. They do not know it. Why they do not know it? Durāśayā. By their hope against hope, durāśayā. Duḥ means which is very difficult to fulfill. I may hope something which is possible—that is good—but if I hope something which is never possible, that is called durāśayā. Āśa means hope, and durāśa means which will never be fulfilled. So here it is, the word is used, durāśayā. Bahir-artha-māninaḥ. Bahiḥ. Bahiḥ, means the external. Just we are composition of external and internal energies of God. The external energy is this gross body, and the internal energy is the mind and ego, intelligence. And behind this, both energies, external… This is external gross energy and external subtle energy. This body made of earth, water, air, and ether, this is called gross external energy. And there is subtle external energy. What is that? Mind, intelligence, and false ego. And behind that, I am. The soul is there. I am the proprietor of this body made of… Just like you are covered by the shirt and coat. The shirt and coat is external body. Real body you are. Similarly this body, this gross body made of earth, water, air, fire, that is gross external energy of God, or Kṛṣṇa, and the mind, and ego, and intelligence, they are subtle. So we are covered. So one who has taken… Just like if I think that “Simply by having nice shirt and coat I will be happy,” is it possible? Unless you eat nicely, unless you sleep nicely, unless you have got your sense gratification, simply by putting on costly nice shirt and coat, will you be happy? No. That is not possible.
So here we have taken this… Bahir-artha-māninaḥ. We want to be happy by adjustment of this external energy. Durāśayā ye bahir-artha-māninaḥ. That cannot be. You are spirit soul. You must have spiritual food. You must have spiritual life. Then you can be happy. Simply as you cannot be happy by having nice shirt and coat, similarly, simply by materialistic way of life, I mean a gross and fine… Gross means this high skyscraper building, machines, factories, nice road goes motorcar. These are gross. And subtle: nice song, poetry, philosophy. That is subtle, subtle matter. So people are trying to be happy with this gross and subtle material existence. That cannot be. Durāśayā ye bahir-artha-māninaḥ. Na te viduḥ svārtha-gatiṁ hi viṣṇuṁ durāśayā ye bahir-artha-māninaḥ, andhā yathāndhair upanīyamānāḥ. Why they have accepted this sort of civilization? Because they are led by blind leaders. Now, suppose we are conducting this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. Nobody is interested. Very few interested. But if we give some false hope that “If you follow this path, then within six months you will become God and you will be all-powerful, and then…,” oh, so many people will come. You see?
Andhā yathāndhair upanīyamānāḥ. One blind leader giving, leading to other blind men. Suppose one blind man says that “All right. Come. Follow me. I shall help you crossing this street, Mulberry Street. All right.” So he is blind, and the followers are also blind. The result will be that he is dashed by some motorcar or truck and they all die. Andhā yathāndhair upanīyamānās te ‘pīśa-tantryām uru-dāmni baddhāḥ. They do not know that we are tied up very hard by the laws, stringent laws of material nature. How we can become free from this material bondage? That is not possible. You have to take instruction who is not andhā, who is not blind. That means whose eyes are open, who is liberated from this material bondage. You have to take instruction from him. Then you will understand what is your self-interest. Otherwise, if you take instruction from another blind man. You are already blind. If you take instruction from another blind man, then it will be not possible to become liberated from this material bondage.
Na te viduḥ svārtha-gatim. Actually his interest is Viṣṇu. Just like a small child is crying. Then what is the child’s interest? It is searching after the mother’s breast. So anyone who knows, immediately he takes the child and brings to the mother, “Take care of your child. She is crying.” And the mother takes on the breast. The child is immediately happy. The child cannot express what does he want, but he is simply crying. But one who knows what for she is crying or he is crying, he takes that, he helps with the child, and then the child is happy. Similarly, na te viduḥ svārtha-gatiṁ hi viṣṇum. Because we are part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa or the Supreme Lord, Supreme Personality of Godhead, we are actually crying for Kṛṣṇa. But these false leaders, these blind leaders, they do not know. They are giving… Instead of bread, they are giving stone. How one can be happy? That is the position. Na te viduḥ svārtha-gatiṁ hi viṣṇum durāśayā ye bahir-artha-māninaḥ . Bahir-artha-māninaḥ. Bahiḥ I have already explained—external energy, gross external energy and subtle external energy. So those who are interested with the gross external energy and subtle external energy, their ambition of life will never be fulfilled. Durāśayā. Those who are interested with Viṣṇu, and one who is showing the path of Viṣṇu, he is his real friend. One who is giving Kṛṣṇa consciousness, he is the real friend of the world. All others, leading to the external energy, they cannot give any happiness to this human society. That is the explanation given by Prahlāda Mahārāja. Na te viduḥ svārtha-gatiṁ hi viṣṇuṁ durāśayā ye bahir-artha-māninaḥ, andhā yathāndhair upanīyamānāḥ .
You cannot manufacture the process of your happiness by tackling this material energy. That is not possible because the material energy is not under your control. It is controlled by the Supreme. How you can overpower the material energy? That is not possible. That is explained in the Bhagavad-gītā: Daivī hy eṣa guṇamayī mama māyā duratyayā. It is not possible to overcome the stringent laws of material nature. It is not possible. Daivī hy eṣā guṇamayī mama māyā: “It is My energy. I am controlling.” Mām eva ye prapadyante māyām etāṁ taranti te: “But if somebody surrenders unto Me…” The whole process, whole material activities, the cosmic manifestation, situation, is going on just to bring these rebelled souls to come back to Godhead. That is the situation. The māyā, the stringent laws, are there. Just like what is the purpose of this police force or material force or military force? The purpose is to keep the citizens obedient to the state. That is the purpose. So long… At any time, if a citizen becomes disobedient to the state laws, he is immediately put into the police custody. And if he is more powerful, then under military custody. Similarly, anyone who has rebelled against the superiority of God, he is put into the stringent laws of material nature and he is suffering. That is the position. Therefore his self-interest is to seek out the Supreme Personality of Godhead and surrender unto Him. Sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja . That will make you happy. Otherwise, if you simply try to adjust material things and become happy, that is not possible. This is the explanation of Prahlāda Mahārāja.
Now, next verse Prahlāda Mahārāja gives hint how one can seek out the path of Viṣṇu, or Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That is also given hint by Prahlāda Mahārāja. He says, naiṣāṁ matis tāvad urukramāṅghriṁ spṛśaty anarthāpagamo yad-arthaḥ. Anartha. We have created so many unnecessary things and become entangled. So in the beginning of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam it is stated, anarthopaśamaṁ sākṣād bhakti-yogam adhokṣaje . If you want to get out of these anarthas, unnecessary trouble and problems which you have created, anarthopaśamam, if you want to cut down these unnecessary problems… This morning I was seeing one picture of Berlin sent by one of my disciples. So I had been in Moscow also. This city I have seen, very nice city. Berlin is very nice city. London is very nice city. But why they engaged in fighting and bombed each, other’s city? Why this happenned? Because they have lost their interest in Viṣṇu, in God. Therefore I am thinking, “You are my enemy; I am your enemy,” and we fight like cats and dogs. But as soon as we come to the Viṣṇu understanding, Kṛṣṇa understanding, these cities, these nice cities, this nice civilization, can be maintained very nicely. You be happy. Yajña-śiṣṭāśino santaḥ. You eat nicely, dance nicely, live nicely, and go back to home, back to Godhead. Enjoy this life and next life. The Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is so nice. Everyone should take seriously, try to understand it seriously. It is authorized on the Vedic principles. It is nothing something manufactured, unauthorized. So that is our request. So we are opening centers in different parts of the world to give opportunity to the people to understand his real interest: Viṣṇu, his real interest. That is our mission. So kindly help us and join us.
Thank you very much. Hare Kṛṣṇa. [break]
Śyāmasundara: …questions. Be nice if you take this opportunity. This will be the last speaking engagement by His Divine Grace in London. No questions?
Prabhupāda: That’s all right. [end]