Address to Rotary Club
Prabhupāda: Ladies and Gentlemen, the President, I am very much thankful to you that you are eager to hear about what Kṛṣṇa wants to speak. Kṛṣṇa is accepted as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. All ācāryas—Rāmānujācārya, Madhvācārya, Viṣṇu Svāmī, Nimbārka, and latest, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, and before that, other ācāryas like Vyāsadeva, Nārada, Asita, Devala, and before that, the original ācārya, Lord Brahmā, Lord Śiva—everyone accepted Kṛṣṇa the Supreme Personality of Godhead. We are searching after whether there is God or there is no God. If there is God, what is the nature? What is the form? Whether He is person or imperson? There are so many questions. And to solve all these questions, the God Himself descends and speaks about Himself, and that speaking is this Bhagavad-gītā. God is speaking about Himself personally, personally present. So you can know Him, you can see Him, what He is, what is His function. Just to mitigate all our doubts, God is present here. And Kṛṣṇa says in the beginning of the Seventh Chapter of the Bhagavad-gītā how you can understand God without any doubt and in complete. That is spoken by God Himself. ¶
mayy āsakta-manāḥ pārtha
yogaṁ yuñjan mad-āśrayaḥ
asaṁśayaṁ samagraṁ māṁ
yathā jñāsyasi tac chṛṇu
“My dear Pārtha, Arjuna, in order to know Me, God, asaṁśayam, without any doubt, and samagram,” mean in completeness, “as you can know Me, I am personally speaking to you.” That means if you want to know God, you can know Him when He explains Himself. Otherwise, you cannot speculate. God is unlimited, and your speculative power is limited. ¶
So you cannot understand God without the mercy of God. That is the verdict of the Vedic literature. It is very easy to understand. Suppose here is a big man, rich man, learned man. You want to know about him. So you cannot understand him by speculation: “He may be of this standard. He may be like this. He may have so much money.” You suggest; another friend suggests. In this way the study of that particular man is not complete. But if the same person kindly speaks and explains about himself, that “Sir, I am like this.” [coughs] [aside:] Water. “My position is like this. I have got so much bank balance,” that is the way. This is the way of understanding. It is called descending process. And there is another process, which is called ascending process. In Sanskrit it is called āroha-panthā, avaroha-panthā. Āroha-panthā… You want to go, to know about the sun planet or any other. Just like they are trying. They are trying to go there, Mars planet, moon planet, by rising on the sky by their aeroplanes, sputniks. But they have not been able to understand what is the position of these planets. This is called āroha-panthā. But if somebody comes from the planet and explains everything, then you know it very easily. Similarly, God has come to explain Himself. You’ll find in the Bhagavad-gītā. ¶
This Bhagavad-gītā is recorded in the greater Indian history, Mahābhārata. Mahābhārata means greater India, or greater Bhārata. Greater Bhārata means the whole planet was formerly Bhāratavarṣa. Now it is cut into pieces. Recently we have got experience that Pakistan was also India. Now it is cut out. Similarly, this Bhārata… Bhārata means… Bhāratavarṣa means the sapta-samudra, sapta-dvīpa. This sapta-dvīpa still accepted—the North America, South America, Asia, Africa, Australia. In this way there are sapta-dvīpa, islands. So that is Bhārata. Now it is cut off under different circumstances. And the capital was this New Delhi, or Hastināpura, and the kings, emperors, were the Pāṇḍavas’ family. So this is the history of greater India. That is called Mahābhārata. So Mahābhārata… In the Mahābhārata this Bhagavad-gītā is set up, and the writer of Mahābhārata is Vyāsadeva himself, and therefore the recorder of the speech, what Kṛṣṇa said in the Battlefield of Kurukṣetra, is also Vyāsadeva. ¶
So Vyāsadeva, you’ll find in the Bhagavad-gītā, he says everywhere, bhagavān uvāca. He never says that “I am writing.” He says, bhagavān uvāca. That you’ll mark, those who have read Bhagavad-gītā. [break] …tac chṛṇu. Then you’ll understand Bhagavān without any doubt and in completeness. Asaṁśayam samagraṁ māṁ yathā jñāsyasi tac chṛṇu ¶. It is very easy. If you simply concentrate your mind on Kṛṣṇa, sa vai manaḥ kṛṣṇa-padāravindayoḥ , as Mahārāja Ambarīṣa did, and many other great personalities did it… Arjuna did. Now we are concerned with Arjuna and Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is speaking, and Arjuna is hearing. So what is the situation? The situation is that the Kurus and the Pāṇḍavas assembled together on the great battlefield. It is not battlefield, Kurukṣetra; it is dharmakṣetra.
māmakāḥ pāṇḍavāś caiva
kim akurvata sañjaya
This is the question by Dhṛtarāṣṭra. Dhṛtarāṣṭra was the father of the Kurus, and the Pāṇḍavas were the five brothers, the sons of the younger brother of Dhṛtarāṣṭra, Mahārāja Pāṇḍu. So Dhṛtarāṣṭra was blind, born blind. Actually, he was to inherit—the eldest son of the family. But on account of his blindness the throne was given to his younger brother, Pāṇḍu. So the sons of Pāṇḍu is known as Pāṇḍavas, and the sons of Dhṛtarāṣṭra are known as Kurus, or Dhartarāṣṭra. So after all, politics, it is always very intriguing in all times. So Dhṛtarāṣṭra was very sorry that he could not become the emperor. At least his son should be. Because he was blind, that’s all, but his sons were not blind. So naturally father wants… So this is the whole history of Mahābhārata, intriguing, politics, and ultimately there was fight between the two parties, Kurus and the Pāṇḍavas, to decide. By logic, by morality and other things, everything failed. Then there was declaration of war. The Bhagavad-gītā is spoken in that warfield. ¶
Kṛṣṇa was engaged as the chariot driver of the chariot of Arjuna. And while the chariot was brought in the battlefield between the two groups of soldiers—senayor ubhayor madhye rathaṁ sthāpaya me ‘cyuta ¶—Arjuna requested, “My dear Kṛṣṇa…” Kṛṣṇa was his friend, and Kṛṣṇa was familywise related both with the Kurus and Pāṇḍavas. Kṛṣṇa’s father and the Pāṇḍavas’ mother, they were real brother and sister. In this way there were of family relationship, and Kṛṣṇa therefore denied to take part in the actual fighting. The whole world was divided. Some of them joined this party; some of them joined that party, just like it actually happens when there is big war. Even nowadays, all the nations, they make a group. Some of them forming were forming one group; another some of them, they formed another group. Exactly the same thing was done. Now Kṛṣṇa was the charioteer, but when the chariot was brought in front of the two soldiers’ party, Arjuna became little bit disturbed that “I have to fight. On the other side they are my brothers, they are my nephews, they are my gurus, Dronācārya, and they are my grandfather, Bhīṣmadeva. So what kind of fight is this, that I have to fight with my friends and relatives and family members?” So he hesitated, that “Kṛṣṇa, what kind of fight this is? They are not my enemies; they are all family members. So I am not interested in this fight.” So he practically decided not to fight. And Kṛṣṇa said that “What is this nonsense? You are a military man, and you have come to fight here, and you are My friend and My relative also, and if you decide not to fight, what people will say?” This is the beginning. Then, after some arguments, Arjuna thought it wise that “Actually, I am a military man, and I have come to fight a decision that we shall fight. Now what I am trying to do, to avoid this fighting, actually, it is not my business. I am deviating from my duty.” Therefore… [aside:] Find out this, kārpaṇya-doṣa. Find out.
pṛcchāmi tvāṁ dharma-sammūḍha-cetāḥ
yac chreyaḥ syān niścitaṁ brūhi tan me
śiṣyas te ‘haṁ śādhi māṁ tvāṁ prapannam
Prabhupāda: Translation. ¶
Pradyumna: “Now I am confused about my duty and have lost all composure because of weakness. In this condition I am asking You to tell me clearly what is best for me. Now I am Your disciple, and a soul surrendered unto You. Please instruct me.” ¶
Prabhupāda: Yes. So Arjuna understood his weakness, his weak point. Therefore he said to Kṛṣṇa that kārpaṇya-doṣopahata-svabhāvaḥ. Kārpaṇya, this word, comes from kṛpaṇa. Kṛpaṇa… Kṛpaṇa, this word is known practically everyone. Kṛpaṇata means miserness. A person who has got enough resources but if he does not use it properly, it is called…, he is called a kṛpaṇa, miser. And the opposite word of kṛpaṇa is udhara, or liberal. So there are two words, kṛpaṇa. So Arjuna said, kārpaṇya-doṣa: “I know I can fight. I am quite competent military person. But I am not using my resources; therefore it is kārpaṇya-doṣopahata-svabhāvaḥ.” Svabhāvaḥ means naturally a military man, a kṣatriya, is very bold enough to fight. That is one of the qualification of a military man. Yuddhe cāpalāyanam. The śaurya, vīrya, tejaḥ, yuddhe cāpalāyanam, these are the symptoms of kṣatriya. He would never go away from fighting. When there is challenge, fighting, a kṣatriya will never deny. Yuddhe cāpalāyanam. So when kṣatriya, especially a kṣatriya like Arjuna… He is the best military man of that age, and he was denying to fight. So he could understand his weakness. He said, kārpaṇya-doṣopahata-svabhāvaḥ ¶: “Naturally I should fight, but on account of my crippled decision, or miserly decision, I am perplexed.” So Kṛṣṇa… He knew Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. “Therefore I am surrendering unto You.” What is that? Two, last lines?
Pradyumna: Śiṣyas te ‘haṁ śādhi māṁ tvāṁ prapannam. ¶
Prabhupāda: Śiṣyas te ‘ham. Ahaṁ te śiṣya: “I just become Your disciple, and You just educate me. Please enlighten me.” This is the position. Before that, Kṛṣṇa and Arjuna, they were talking like friends. Friends means argument. We can go on arguing for days together, but there is no decision. That is friendly talk. But when there is talk between a master and disciple, there is no question of arguing. The disciple has to accept what is ordered by the master. ¶
So Kṛṣṇa is accepted guru, or the spiritual master, and Arjuna says, śiṣyas te ‘haṁ śādhi māṁ prapannam ¶. Prapannam means that “I am surrendered to You. I don’t think myself on the equal level with You.” The spiritual master and the disciple, they cannot be on the equal level. Therefore a spiritual master is called guru. Guru means heavy. Just like in the scale we put something this side, something that side. The thing which is weighty, that goes down. Similarly, guru is supposed to be weighty than the śiṣya. So Kṛṣṇa begins to speak when He is accepted as guru; otherwise He does not speak. Now, our subject matter is “Let Kṛṣṇa speak for Himself.” So we have to accept Kṛṣṇa as the supreme authority. Then His speaking will be useful for us. Otherwise, if we think that Kṛṣṇa is on the equal level—“He is also a historical personality, and His education and my education equal, and so on, so on”—so long we think like that, then we cannot hear or understand Kṛṣṇa. But if we take the position of Arjuna—śiṣyas te ‘haṁ śādhi māṁ prapannam—then Kṛṣṇa will speak to the disciple like Arjuna, and everything will be clear.
So the point is Bhagavad-gītā is well known all over the world. Not now. Because we are preaching Bhagavad-gītā through this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, and millions of people are interested. We have got so many books, and the calculation is already submitted. They are accepting this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement through literature, and big, big scholars, professors, librarian, they are purchasing our books very nicely. The total collection daily is five to six lakhs of rupees. So now this Kṛṣṇa movement is being appreciated all over the world. Unfortunately, although Bhagavad-gītā is spoken in this land of Bhāratavarṣa, near your Chandigarh, the Kurukṣetra, we do not allow Kṛṣṇa to speak. This is our misfortune. Kṛṣṇa spoke these words of Bhagavad-gītā. Many scholars, many so-called saintly persons, they have misinterpreted the words of Bhagavad-gītā. They did not allow to speak Kṛṣṇa. They wanted to speak on behalf of Kṛṣṇa… Not on behalf of Kṛṣṇa; I am sorry. They wanted to speak about themself. If one speaks on behalf of Kṛṣṇa, he is guru. But if one manufactures some idea from the words of Kṛṣṇa by misinterpretation and does not allow Kṛṣṇa to speak, it is a great dangerous position. That has become actually the fact in India. Otherwise, such a big culture, complete culture… From the Bhagavad-gītā, any question you can raise, the answer is there. Political, social, religious, philosophical, cultural—any way you study Bhagavad-gītā, the complete answer is there. Therefore our request is that let Kṛṣṇa speak for Himself. Don’t try to misinterpret the words of Kṛṣṇa or the words in the Bhagavad-gītā. That will spoil it. ¶
Just like in the beginning it is said, ¶
māmakāḥ pāṇḍavāś caiva
kim akurvata sañjaya
Now this Kurukṣetra… Everyone knows there is a place Kurukṣetra. From time immemorial in the Vedic literature it is mentioned about Kurukṣetra. Kurukṣetre dharmam ācaret: “Go to Kurukṣetra and perform ritualistic ceremonies there.” So it is dharmakṣetra. So how you can interpret Kurukṣetra as the body? Where is that dictionary, and where is the necessity of interpreting like that? There is no necessity. Interpretation is required when the meaning is not clear. But if the meaning is clear, why should you interpret it unnecessarily? That is malinterpretation, and that is going on. Kṛṣṇa is accepted as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, but somebody says, “He is fictitious. There was no fight like Kurukṣetra. There was no such person as Kṛṣṇa,” and “Kṛṣṇa is a person from the black aborigines,” so on, so on, so many interpretation. What is the benefit? The benefit is that we have lost our Vedic culture. This is the benefit. ¶
Therefore our request is… This Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is specially meant for this purpose, that do not try to be overlord of Kṛṣṇa. Don’t speak anything manufactured by you on the plea of Kṛṣṇa speaking. If you want to speak something, good or nonsense, you can speak. Everyone has got the freedom to speak about his philosophy, about his thesis. But why through Kṛṣṇa? Why through Bhagavad-gītā? This is our protest. Let Kṛṣṇa speak Himself as He is and as He wants. Why should you speak by malinterpretation? That is the practice now, that everyone can interpret Bhagavad-gītā as he likes. Then where is the authority of Bhagavad-gītā? Can you interpret the law given by the government in your own way? That is not possible. Similarly, if Kṛṣṇa is accepted… He’s accepted, actually. [aside:] Find out this verse, paraṁ brahma paraṁ dhāma pavitraṁ paramaṁ bhavān ¶. Tenth Chapter.
paraṁ brahma paraṁ dhāma
pavitraṁ paramaṁ bhavān
puruṣaṁ śāśvataṁ divyam
ādi-devam ajaṁ vibhum
āhus tvām ṛṣayaḥ sarve
devarṣir nāradas tathā
asito devalo vyāsaḥ
svayaṁ caiva bravīṣi me
Prabhupāda: So… Yes. Read it. ¶
Pradyumna: “Arjuna said: You are the Supreme Brahman, the ultimate, the supreme abode and purifier, the Absolute Truth and the eternal divine person. You are the primal God, transcendental and original, and You are the unborn and all-pervading beauty. All the great sages such as Nārada, Asita, Devala and Vyāsa proclaim this of You, and now You Yourself are declaring it to me.” ¶
Prabhupāda: So the student of Bhagavad-gītā, as Arjuna says, śiṣyas te ‘haṁ śādhi māṁ prapannam. After hearing Bhagavad-gītā in detail, he accepted Kṛṣṇa as paraṁ brahma paraṁ dhāma pavitraṁ paramaṁ bhavān puruṣaṁ śāśvatam ādyam ¶. So one may say that “This is a friendly talk. So Arjuna accepted Kṛṣṇa, as it is described in the Bhagavad-gītā, that He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. So as a friend he accepted.” Because Kṛṣṇa says, aham ādir hi devānām .
ahaṁ sarvasya prabhavo
mattaḥ sarvaṁ pravartate
iti matvā bhajante māṁ
So Arjuna accepted Him, “Yes, You are paraṁ brahma.” Brahman and Paraṁbrahman. We, all living entities, we are also Brahman, but we are not Paraṁbrahman. Paraṁbrahman is Kṛṣṇa. ¶
īśvaraḥ paramaḥ kṛṣṇaḥ
anādir ādir govindaḥ
Ete cāṁśa kala-puṁsāṁ kṛṣṇas tu bhagavān svayam ¶. These are the verdict of the Vedic literature. Here it is also repeated by Arjuna, that “Not that after hearing You I accept You as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Paraṁbrahman, but formerly Asita, Nārada, Vyāsa, they also accepted it.” The next verse?
sarvam etad ṛtaṁ manye
yan māṁ vadasi keśava
na hi te bhagavān vyaktiṁ
vidur devā na dānavāḥ
Prabhupāda: So “I accept all Your instruction.” What is again? Read it. ¶
Pradyumna: Sarvam etad ṛtaṁ manye. ¶
Prabhupāda: Sarvam etad ṛtaṁ manye. This is actually student of Bhagavad-gītā, not that “The portion which I like, I accept, and the portion I do not like, I reject.” This is nonsense. If you want to become the student of Bhagavad-gītā, if you want to derive some benefit out of it, then you should be like Arjuna, like this. He said, sarvam etad ṛtaṁ manye: “Whatever You say, I accept it.” Ṛtam means truth. “Not that I am accepting, but previous to me…” What is the next line? Sarvam etad… ¶
Pradyumna: Yan māṁ vadasi keśava. ¶
Prabhupāda: Then? ¶
Pradyumna: Na hi te bhagavan vyaktiṁ vidur devā na dānavāḥ. ¶
Prabhupāda: “Because Your personality cannot be understood even by the demigods, what to speak of ordinary human being.” And Kṛṣṇa has said that avajānanti māṁ mūḍhā mānuṣīṁ tanum āśritāḥ paraṁ bhāvam ajānanto ¶. The mūḍha, those who deride at Kṛṣṇa, that “He’s an ordinary human being,” such person is condemned herewith as mūḍha. Mūḍha means ass. Avajānanti māṁ mūḍhā mānuṣīṁ tanum āśritāḥ . Because he does not know paraṁ bhāvam, what is the background of Kṛṣṇa. So similarly, there are many passages. Anyone who does not understand Kṛṣṇa and at the same time he declares himself as the student of Bhagavad-gītā, as a scholar of Bhagavad-gītā, he is misleading himself and misleading his followers. That is the verdict of Bhagavad-gītā and everyone.
Bhagavad-gītā has to be understood. In the Fourth Chapter you find out that, ¶
imaṁ vivasvate yogaṁ
proktavān aham avyayam
vivasvān manave prāhur
manur ikṣvākave ‘bravīt
imaṁ rājarṣayo viduḥ
This is paramparā. The truth of Bhagavad-gītā was first spoken to the sun-god, and he spoke to his son, to Manu, Vaivasvata Manu. And Vaivasvata Manu spoke to his son, Ikṣvāku. And Kṛṣṇa said, evaṁ paramparā-prāptam imaṁ rājarṣayo viduḥ ¶. Rājarṣaya. This philosophy of Bhagavad-gītā, it is meant for the rājarṣi, not for the loafer class. Rājarṣi: king, at the same time, saintly person. Imaṁ rājarṣayo viduḥ. Kṛṣṇa does not say that ordinary scholar or so-called philosopher can understand. Only the rājarṣayo viduḥ. So Arjuna is one of the rājarṣis. So he understood Kṛṣṇa. He says, he says, paraṁ brahma paraṁ dhāma . So we have to accept this paramparā system. If we take Bhagavad-gītā seriously, then we should follow the footprints of Arjuna as he understood. He accepted Kṛṣṇa as the Paraṁbrahman. So what is spoken by Paraṁbrahman, the Supreme Lord, the Supreme Person, how we can interpret His words and squeeze out some meaning and mislead myself and mislead others? This is not good.
So our this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is trying to rectify this mistake. Bhagavad-gītā is the most authorized scripture in the Vedic literature. Vedic literature means it is not spoken by any ordinary human being. Apaureṣaya means this literature, Vedic literature, is spoken directly by the Supreme Person, or Lord. So it was instructed through Brahmā, Lord Brahmā. Tene brahma hṛda ādi-kavaye. Janmādy asya yataḥ ¶. Oṁ namo bhāgavate vāsudevāya. These are the Vedānta philosophy’s beginning. The Vedānta philosophy begins with the words athāto brahma jijñāsā. This human form of life is meant for inquiring about Brahman. The human life is not meant for any other purpose. That is the distinction between a dog’s life and a human being’s life. A dog cannot inquire about Brahman. That is not possible. But a human being can inquire about Brahman. Therefore this life is meant for brahma-jijñāsā, about Brahman.
So if we accept these aphorisms of the Vedānta-sūtra… Vedānta-sūtra is supposed to be the most authorized summary, cream of all the Vedas. So Kṛṣṇa has said in the Bhagavad-gītā, vedaiś ca sarvair aham eva vedyaṁ vedānta-vid vedānta-kṛd ca aham ¶. So if we accept these words of Kṛṣṇa, then we become actually Vedāntī. Without understanding these things as spoken in the… Bhagavad-gītā is the summarized Vedānta or Vedic philosophy. Because in this age, Kali-yuga, we are not very advanced. About us, it is described in the śāstra, mandāḥ sumanda-matayo manda-bhāgyā upadrutāḥ, prāyeṇālpayuṣaḥ kalāv asmin yuge janāḥ . In this age, Kali-yuga, we are living not very long time. In Kali-yuga, the duration of life will be reduced so much, gradually, that if a person lives for twenty to thirty years, he’ll be considered a grand old man. That day is coming. Now we have got practical experience. Our grandfather or father lived for so many years, but we are not living for so many years. Our sons will not live so many years. In this way the duration of life, the memory, the mercifulness, the bodily strength—everything will be reduced. This is already foretold in the śāstras. So therefore in this age we are all short-living, mandāḥ, very slow or bad, and sumanda-matayo. Everyone has got a obnoxious opinion about philosophy, about the goal of life. Mandāḥ sumanda-matayo, and manda-bhāgyā, unfortunate also. The description, if we try to describe, it will take long time. The short-cut description is there: mandāḥ sumanda-matayo manda-bhāgyā hy upadrutāḥ. At the same time, disturbed always. This material world means always disturbed condition, but in this age, Kali-yuga, the disturbance is more and more.
So under the circumstances, it is out of Kṛṣṇa’s kindness that making Arjuna as a target of His instruction, Bhagavad-gītā, He has given us this valuable instruction. We should accept it as it is. Therefore we are presenting Bhagavad-gītā as it is, without any malinterpretation. Take Bhagavad-gītā as it is. You’ll be benefited. And so far as brahma-jijñāsā, the Kṛṣṇa begins with this aphorism of brahma-jijñāsā. When Arjuna submitted to Arjuna…, er, Kṛṣṇa that “I am Your now disciple. There is no need of friendly talks. You can give me instruction seriously because I am surrendered to You, and You give me the real instruction,” so the first instruction was, as soon as Arjuna submitted… Because unless you submit, it is useless to talk, because you’ll not hear. Therefore to accept an authority is submission. First thing is, tad viddhi praṇipātena paripraśnena sevayā ¶. Unless you submit, if you think yourself that you are a very big scholar, very learned scholar and very good philosopher—you don’t require any instruction from guru—then there is no possibility. The first thing is Kṛṣṇa instructs in the Bhagavad-gītā, tad viddhi praṇipātena paripraśnena sevayā. If you want to know the substance, then the first thing is that you must be submissive, praṇipāta. Prakṛṣṭa-rūpeṇa nipāta. You fall down. Therefore the system is: the disciple falls flat before the spiritual master. That is the etiquette, praṇipātena. And if you think that you know better than Kṛṣṇa or Kṛṣṇa’s representative, the guru, there is no necessity of accepting guru. Do not keep a guru as a pet dog. No. You must be submissive. Tad viddhi praṇipātena paripraśnena sevayā . This is wanted. That Kṛṣṇa… That is the example given by Arjuna. Śiṣyas te ‘haṁ śādhi māṁ prapannam . This prapannam is required.
So when Arjuna submitted, then Kṛṣṇa spoke. The first speaking was that, ¶
aśocyān anvaśocas tvaṁ
prajñā-vādāṁś ca bhāṣase
gatāsūn agatāsūṁś ca
“Arjuna, you are talking with Me—of course, you are My friend, on equal level. You are talking just like a very learned man.” You have read in the Bhagavad-gītā, he submitted his proposition, that “How can I kill my…, the other side? They are my brothers, and if the brothers are dead, my sister-in-laws will be widow, and they will be polluted, and there will be varṇa-saṅkara. And so…” These things are facts, but Kṛṣṇa says that “You are simply taking calculation of the body. Body. You have no spiritual calculation. The life is meant for spiritual understanding, athāto brahma jijñāsā. But you have no such understanding. You have no such knowledge, and still you are speaking.” Aśocyān anvaśocas tvaṁ prajñā-vādāṁś ca bhāṣase ¶: “You are talking like a very learned man, but My dear friend, you are not learned.” He said in a different way. Agatāsūn. Gatāsūn agatāsūṁś ca nānuśocanti paṇḍitāḥ. “Because this body… You are thinking in terms of bodily relationship, but a paṇḍita, a learned scholar… Actually he is learned scholar when he does not lament for this body, either alive or dead.” This is the first instruction. This body is already dead. It is matter, dead matter. But you should try to understand the living spirit within this body.
The next verse He said that, ¶
dehino ‘smin yathā dehe
kaumāraṁ yauvanaṁ jarā
dhīras tatra na muhyati
This is knowledge, beginning of knowledge. Try to understand about the soul, the part of Para-brahman, the spark of Para-brahman, the spirit soul. That is within this body. So “You are lamenting on this body, but you have no information of the active principle within the body.” So nānuśocanti paṇḍitāḥ: “So this is not the statement of a paṇḍita.” In other way He… He is friend. Or as śiṣya…, that “This kind of things never happens in the case of a paṇḍita.” That means, “My dear friend, you are apaṇḍita. You are not paṇḍita.” One who does not know about the spirit soul, he is not a paṇḍita. Dhīras tatra na muhyati. This transmigration of the soul… Just like you condole one Rotarian who has died. But Kṛṣṇa says, dhīras tatra na muhyati: “Yes, he’s not dead. He has transmigrated to another body. He’s not dead.” That is the… Na hanyate hanyamāne śarīre ¶. This is the instruction of Kṛṣṇa, that “Don’t think that because the body is annihilated, therefore the person is annihilated. No.” Na jāyate na mriyate vā kadācit: “That soul never takes birth, never dies.” Nityaḥ śāśvato ‘yam, na hanyate hanyamāne . This is the first instruction of Bhagavad-gītā.
There are so many students of Bhagavad-gītā, but because they are not actually paṇḍita, they do not take account of the simple thing, how the soul transmigrates from one body to another. This is the position. And therefore we should not continue to remain apaṇḍitāḥ, nānuśocanti paṇḍitāḥ, and lament. So long we are not paṇḍitāḥ, our business is to lament and to hanker. Hanker. We lament what is lost, and we hanker what is not in our possession. This is material disease. So when we understand that ahaṁ brahmāsmi… That hint is given by Kṛṣṇa, that asmin dehe dehinaḥ. The proprietor of the body is there, asmin dehe. On account of presence of the proprietor of the body, the body is changing. Dehino ‘smin yathā dehe kaumāraṁ yauvanaṁ jarā ¶. The kaumāra, the childhood, the boyhood, the youthhood—these changes of body is taking place on account of presence of the dehina. So where is this education all over the world? There is no such education. But there is knowledge. This is Bhagavad-gītā. We don’t take advantage of Bhagavad-gītā; therefore there is no such education, athāto brahma jijñāsā, or to understand Brahman.
So everything is very nicely explained in the Bhagavad-gītā, and you have got a nice club. So I request you to discuss on the Bhagavad-gītā as it is, without any malinterpretation. Then it will be beneficial for your club. Because Cāṇakya Paṇḍita… You have heard the name of Cāṇakya Paṇḍita. In New Delhi there is a Chanakyapuri. He was a great politician, very learned scholar, brāhmaṇa, and great moralist also. So he has instructed about this Brahman knowledge in various ways. So our point is that we should not spoil this life. We should utilize every moment of our life very properly. This Cāṇakya Pandit I am referring because he has given very good instruction how to utilize our life. He says, ¶
āyuṣaḥ kṣaṇa eko ‘pi
na labhyaḥ svarṇa-koṭibhiḥ
sa cetta nirarthakaṁ nītiḥ
kā ca hānis tato ‘dhikā
We are calculating of loss and gain. Cāṇakya Paṇḍita says that “Even one moment of our life, if it is lost, then you cannot get it back even by paying hundreds and thousands of dollars.” One moment of this day, if it is lost, you cannot get it back by paying hundreds and thousands of dollars. So if the moments of your life is spent uselessly, then how much loss you are suffering, you just imagine. Therefore our request is that we have got this valuable life, human form of life, bahu-sambhavānte, after many, many births in the evolutionary process. Now we should try to understand what is Brahman, athāto brahma jijñāsā. Don’t spoil it otherwise. And that brahma-jijñāsā and answer is there in the Bhagavad-gītā. Brahma-bhūtaḥ prasannātmā ¶. Bhagavad-gītā instruction is given just to bring you back to Brahman consciousness, or Kṛṣṇa consciousness, not this bodily consciousness. Bodily consciousness is there in the dog and the cat. So that is not very glorification. We should come to the Brahman consciousness, then brahma-bhūtaḥ prasannātmā. Then you’ll be jubilant. Brahma-bhūtaḥ prasannātmā na śocati na kāṅkṣati-samaḥ sarveṣu bhūteṣu . And when you come to that platform of understanding Brahman, then there is question of sama, samatā. Samaḥ sarveṣu bhūteṣu. And on that stage you can attain the parā-bhakti, or devotional life to the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
So that is our propaganda, and we are trying to bring people to that stage of parā-bhakti. That parā-bhakti is achievable by the simple method, as Kṛṣṇa said, ¶
mayy āsakta-manāḥ pārtha
yogaṁ yuñjan mad-āśrayaḥ
asaṁśayaṁ samagraṁ māṁ
Unless you understand Kṛṣṇa, why should you surrender unto Him? Parā-bhakti begins when you surrender. So that takes place… [break] …in the darkness of bodily conception of life. That is condemned in the Vedic literature. Sa eva go-kharaḥ. ¶
yasyātma-buddhiḥ kuṇape tri-dhātuke
sva-dhīḥ kalatrādiṣu bhauma ijyadhīḥ
yat-tīrtha-buddhiḥ salile na karhicij
sa eva go-kharaḥ
If we keep ourself on the bodily concept of life, and then we are defeated. This is the verdict of the śāstra. Parābhavas tāvad abodha-jāto yāvan na jijñāsata ātma-tattvam ¶. So long you are not inquisitive about your Brahman identification, ahaṁ brahmāsmi, then whatever you are doing, that is defeat. That is not advancement. So with these words I shall request you that in your club you cultivate this knowledge of Bhagavad-gītā and utilize your time fully, and just try to make your life successful.
Thank you very much. Hare Kṛṣṇa. [applause] [end] ¶