From Analysis to Love

If we use our intelligence to understand God, what will our conclusion be?

esa te 'bhihita sankhye
buddhir yoge tv imam srnu
buddhya yukto yaya partha
karma-bandham prahasyasi

"Thus far I have described this knowledge to you through analytical study. Now listen as I explain it in terms of working without fruitive results. O son of Prtha, when you act in such knowledge you can free yourself from the bondage of works."(Bhagavad-gita 2.39)

Srila Prabhupada

Whether you perform good or bad acts, there will be reactions. If while in this body we act piously, then our future is very good. If we act impiously, then our future is not very good. So we should act piously, not impiously. That is human life. We should know what kind of actions we should do. In the Sixteenth Chapter of the Bhagavad-gita you will find this verse [16.7]: pravrttim ca nivrttim ca jana na vidur asurah. "The demons do not know what kind of actions should be done and what kind of actions should not be done."

It is not that one can do anything he likes, at his whim. That is not allowed, at least for human beings. Even in ordinary life, if you act whimsically you will be liable to so many difficulties at the hands of the state law. Similarly, if you break the laws of God, you will be punished by material nature.

Up to this point in the Bhagavad-gita Krsna has described sankhya, the analytical study of the soul and the body. For example, a medical man can make a partial analysis of the body its anatomy and physiology. He has studied how the brains are working, how the different secretions are transforming into blood, how the heart is working. This is an analytical study.

So as far as the body and the soul are concerned, that subject has been fully analyzed. Now Krsna says, buddhir yoge tv imam srnu: "Hear about another department of knowledge, buddhi-yoga.Buddhi-yoga is spiritual life.

We should take instructions from Krsna on spiritual life because He is the supreme authority. When there are talks between the Supreme Spirit Krsna and the individual spirit the living entity the living entity is always subordinate. People at the present moment do not know who is the Supreme Being. We have to take instructions from the Vedas: nityo nityanam cetanas cetananam eko bahunam yo vidadhati kaman. "The supreme eternal being among all the eternal beings is He who is supplying the necessities of life for all others." There are so many things necessary for birds, beasts, and human beings to live fruits, flowers, milk and everything is being supplied by Krsna. Therefore He is the Supreme Being.

How is He supreme? In a family the father is considered to be supreme. Why? Because he takes care of the whole family. Similarly, the Supreme Person, Krsna, takes care of the whole creation all the innumerable universes, both material and spiritual.

So, when we act according to the direction of the Supreme, that is our constitutional position because we are naturally subordinate to Him. Being in a subordinate position means that one must act according to the directions of one's master. Everyone is acting like that. So, when we recognize Krsna as the supreme master and follow His directions, that is called buddhi-yoga. That is real intelligence.

The word buddhi means "intelligence," and yoga means "linking." In the Tenth Chapter of the Bhagavad-gita you will find this verse:

tesam satata-yuktanam
bhajatam priti-purvakam
dadami buddhi-yogam tam
yena mam upayanti te

So, what is buddhi-yoga? Here Krsna explains, tesam satata-yuktanam: "Persons who are twenty-four hours a day engaged …" What kind of engagement? Bhajatam priti-purvakam: "Always trying to render some service to the Lord." How? Priti-purvakam: "with love and faith." Not that I think, "Oh, I have to do it." No. But "Oh. let me do it nicely." That is love.


Unless there is love, you cannot do anything nicely in the material world. Unless you have some attachment for something, you cannot do it very nicely. Take music, for example. Because the musician has strong attachment for music, he tries to perform it perfectly. So, love is the basis.

Similarly, when you serve Krsna, if you have no love for Him you cannot serve Him very nicely. Also, Krsna will not accept your service if it is not done with great love and affection. That is the basic principle of Krsna consciousness. Krsna does not require your service: He is self-sufficient. He has many servants, anywhere and everywhere. No, Krsna does not require our service, but it is in our interest to render service to Krsna. Then we become happy.

In another verse [9.27] Krsna says,

patram puspam phalam toyam
yo me bhaktya prayacchati
tad aham bhakty-upahrtam
asnami prayatatmanah

"If someone offers Me with love and faith a little flower, a little water, a little fruit I will accept it." Yo me bhaktya prayacchati: The real offering is love. Krsna, the Supreme Person, is giving all the necessities of life to all living entities. He is actually the provider and maintainer of everyone. So why is He asking you for a little fruit and water? Is He hungry? No. He is doing it just to induce you to love Him. That is the point.

In the material condition you are subjected to birth, old age, disease, and death, along with many other miseries. You have fallen into this condition because you have forgotten Krsna. For example, last night so many people came to discuss and talk, but they were not interested in talking about Krsna. They were interested in how their sense gratification would be disturbed if they began this process of Krsna consciousness. That was their concern. Here we have come to preach about Krsna, but they did not ask anything about Krsna: Who is He? What is His philosophy? No, they were simply interested in their own sense gratification. That's all.

This is the position of people in the material world. Everyone is simply interested in sense gratification. There is no question of asking, "What is God? What am I? What is this world?" But these should be the questions of one in human life. As the Vedanta-sutra [1.1.1] says, athato brahma-jijnasa: "Now inquire into the Absolute Truth, the Supreme Being." That is our only business. But throughout the whole world people are simply busy trying to satisfy their senses. This is the cause of our falling down from the spiritual world. Because we have forgotten Krsna, we are now under the clutches of maya [illusion].

So, we have forgotten Krsna, and therefore we are suffering. But because we are part and parcel of Krsna. He comes to canvass: "Why are you suffering? Just surrender unto Me. I'll give you all protection." No, the people will not take His offer.

One who is trained in how to surrender to Krsna practices devotional service. Krsna is within everyone's heart, and He can see if you are very sincere to serve Him. He can understand whether you are serving Him sincerely or with some material motive. Even if you serve Krsna with some material motive, however, your service will never go in vain. Krsna is so kind.

Take Putana, for example. Putana wanted to serve Krsna by feeding Him her breast milk. But her purpose was to kill Krsna, so she smeared her breast with poison. So, Krsna sucked out her milk, and she died. She had a demonic motive, but still Krsna thought, "This rascal Putana wanted to kill Me, but she did not know that I cannot be killed. Still, although her motive was to kill Me, she has served Me by allowing Me to suck her breast, and since I have drunk her milk, she is My mother. Never mind that she came with a demonic motive." Krsna is so kind.

This is the benefit of practicing Krsna consciousness. Of course, we should not have a demonic motive in serving Krsna. Kamsa was also absorbed in thinking of Krsna. He was fully Krsna conscious, always thinking of Krsna but his motive was also to kill Him. Still, Kamsa was liberated because he constantly thought of Krsna.

But this is not bhakti. Bhakti also means thinking of Krsna always but favorably. That is bhakti. To think of Krsna as an enemy is not recommended. How can a devotee think of Krsna as an enemy? The devotee thinks of Krsna as a friend, a son, a master, a lover, whereas a demon, an enemy of Krsna, always thinks of ways to kill Krsna. That is the difference between a demon and a devotee.

The demons are thinking of how to wipe out Krsna, how to banish Krsna, how to kill Krsna. They don't know that the reason they are always suffering is that they are inimical toward Him. Therefore Krsna says [Bg. 16.7), pravrttim ca nivrttim ca jana na vidur asurah: "The demons do not know what to do and what not to do."

One has to learn how to live, what to know, and what to forget. Every progressive method has do's and do not's. So, the demons do not know what they should do and what they should not do. But the devotee knows. No illicit sex. That is a do not. But there is also a do: If you want sex life, then get yourself married according to religious principles and beget nice children. That is a do. No intoxicants. That is a do not. But you should eat krsna-prasadam [food offered to Krsna] and become intoxicated with Krsna's love. That is a do. Similarly, no gambling. That is a do not. But you should indulge in a kind of gambling. What is that? To dedicate your life to Krsna and see the result. That is also gambling. All of my disciples were engaged in their own business, but I advised them to give up that business and take to this Krsna business. So, they are gambling because they do not know what will happen. But they followed my instruction on faith.

Somehow or other we have to become engaged in Krsna's service twenty-four hours a day, with faith and love. We have to think, "Krsna will actually be merciful to me; He'll deliver me from this miserable condition of material life."

Krsna is within you, so you cannot deceive Him. That is not possible. Krsna is the Supreme. You may be a deceiver, but Krsna is the supreme deceiver. And if you are His lover, then for you Krsna is the supreme lover. Ye yatha mam prapadyante tams tathaiva bhajamy aham: "As you deal with Krsna, He reciprocates." That is Krsna consciousness.

So, now Krsna is describing buddhi-yoga. Buddhi-yoga is bhakti-yoga, or devotional service to Krsna. Buddhi means "intelligence." One who is very intelligent can take to Krsna consciousness. Krsna confirms this later [7.19]:

bahunam janmanam ante
jnanavan mam prapadyate
vasudevah sarvam iti
sa mahatma sudurlabhah

"After many, many births, the wise man surrenders to Me."

Everyone is struggling to become happy. Sometimes we struggle as karmis [fruitive workers], sometimes as jnanis [speculative philosophers], and sometimes as yogis. But when you become a bhakta, a devotee of Krsna, that is supreme. So long as you are not a bhakta, you cannot be happy.

Srila Rupa Gosvami has therefore compared the desires for bhukti [sense gratification] and mukti [liberation] to two witches. So long as these witches are in one's heart, one cannot take up devotional service. Most people want to enjoy this material world by working. Everyone is trying for that, engaging in the struggle for existence, thinking, "I want to enjoy this material world to the fullest extent." That is called bhukti. And another witch is mukti, liberation. Those who are disappointed try for mukti.One must become disappointed, because nobody can be happy here following the karmi plan. That is not possible. So people become disappointed and try to end their individual existence by merging into the Absolute. But that is also disappointing.

So, after many, many births of struggling for existence, one will be disappointed. That is a fact. For many births one may become sometimes a karmi and sometimes a jnani and sometimes a yogi to be happy, but one will continually be defeated. Nature is so strong.

Therefore Krsna says, bahunam janmanam ante jnanavan mam prapadyate:

"After many, many births of this struggle, when one comes to be really wise, he surrenders unto Me." How does he surrender? Blindly? No. Vasudevah sarvam iti sa mahatma sudurlabhah: "At that time one understands that Krsna is everything. Such a mahatma is very rare." It is very difficult to find such a great, intelligent person.

Now, if I understand that my ultimate goal is to surrender to Krsna after many, many births, why not surrender immediately? That is intelligence. If I have to eventually come to this point to perfect my life, why not immediately perfect my life? Why should I wait for many, many births? Why not surrender immediately? That is intelligence. Unless one is exceptionally intelligent one cannot take to Krsna consciousness.

So, earlier in this chapter Krsna has described sankhya to Arjuna: "This is your duty. You are a ksatriya [warrior], so why are you refusing to fight? The body is perishable but the soul is immortal, so your grandfather and other kinsmen will not die." This is an analytical study of the situation from the material point of view. But as soon as Arjuna comes to the point of serving Krsna with love, without any need for analytical understanding, that is his perfection.

For example, you know the effects of fire without studying the fire analytically. If you touch fire, it will burn. You don't require to study the composition of fire. Similarly, the gopis in Vrndavana do not study Krsna. They do not care; they simply love Krsna. That is their only qualification. Otherwise, they are ordinary village girls. Similarly, the cowherd boys had no higher education, no knowledge of Vedanta; they were not very nicely cultured gentlemen, just village cowherd boys. But they loved Krsna as their dear friend.

The cowherd girls did not know any other business than to love Krsna. That is perfection. Without any analytical knowledge, they loved Him. When they saw Narayana "Oh, here is Nara-yana" there was no love. They had respect for Him. You can offer respect to anyone, even if you have no love. But love is a different thing. Love is for Krsna. And this love is the ultimate goal of buddhi-yoga, or Krsna consciousness.

Thank you very much. Hare Krsna.