Friday evening, Dec. 30, 1966
In the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna is advising Arjuna. "I am speaking to you a still more confidential part of knowledge, because you are My dear friend." As stated in the 4th Chapter, the Bhagavad Gita is spoken to Arjuna because of his one qualification he was a devotee. The Lord says that the mystery of Bhagavad Gita is very confidential. Without becoming an unalloyed devotee you cannot know it. In India there are 645 different commentaries on Bhagavad Gita. One professor has even pictured Krishna as a doctor and Arjuna as the patient, and has interposed his own commentary in that way. The people have taken it that everyone is perfect, and he can interpret scripture in his own way. As far as we are concerned, we agree to read Bhagavad Gita according to the Parampara system of disciplic succession. It is being taught by the Supreme Person because, "You are My dear friend. I desire that you become prosperous and happy. So I speak to you." He wants everyone to be happy and peaceful and prosperous, but they do not want it. The sunshine is open to everyone, but if someone wishes to remain in darkness, what can the sunshine do for him? So the Bhagavad Gita is open to everyone.
There are different species of life. Lower and higher grades of understanding exist; that is a fact. But Krishna says anyone can come to Him. If he has lower birth or whatever, it doesn't matter. Bhagavad Gita is transcendental subject matter. Everyone can understand, provided he goes along with this basic principle. The principle is stated in the 4th Chapter: Bhagavad Gita is coming down: "I first of all instructed this yoga system to the Sun-god Vivaswan, who taught it to Manu, who taught it to Ikshaku." From him the disciplic succession is coming down, but "in course of time the disciplic succession was broken." Arjuna is made the new disciple.
In the 2nd Chapter Arjuna surrenders: "So far, we have been talking as friends, but now I accept you as my spiritual master." Anyone following the principle in this line must represent Arjuna. Krishna is speaking as the spiritual master of Arjuna. And Arjuna says, "Whatever You are speaking, I accept." Read it like that. Not, "I like this so I accept. This I don't like, so I reject it." Such reading is useless nonsense.
So the teacher must be a representative of Krishna, His devotee; and the student must be like Arjuna; then the study of Krishna consciousness is perfect and otherwise it is a waste of time. In Srimad Bhagawatam it is stated: "If anyone wants to understand the science of Krishna, he should associate with pure devotees. When discussions take place between pure devotees, the potential of spiritual language will be revealed." Scholarly discussion of Bhagavad Gita is futile. In the Upanishads it is stated, "To one who has got firm faith in God and similar faith in God's representative all the import of Vedic language will be revealed."
We must have the qualification of being a devotee. Become dear to God. My spiritual master used to say, "Don't try to see God. Just act in such a way that God will see you." We have to qualify ourselves. By your qualification God Himself will come and see you.
One who can perceive God is transcendental to all material demands. We are always dissatisfied in the material world with circumstances that won't continue. Happiness is temporary, temporary plight will also exist only for some time, cold, heat, duality, all this is coming and going. To get in the Absolute stage is the process of Krishna consciousness. He is seated in everyone's heart, and as you become purified He will show you the path and in the end when you quit this body, you will go to the spiritual sky.
"Nobody knows Me," He says. "My influence, My power and extension. Even the maharishis (great thinkers) don't know." "I am the Original Person of all demigods and the Original Person of all rishis." There are so many forefathers whom we don't know, nor do we know Brahma and the demigods. What little do we know? We can't reach that foremost platform where we can touch God by our own methods. We gather knowledge by limited senses and Krishna can't be reached by the mind (the center of these senses). Imperfect senses can't reach The Perfect Knowledge. Mind and sense manipulation can't reach Him. However, if you engage your senses in Service of the Lord, then He will reveal Himself through your senses.
People can say, What is the use of understanding God? What is the use? Let Him stay in His place, let me stay in my place. But in the Shastras it states that pious activities will raise us to beauty, knowledge, good birth, and that by impious (sinful) activities we suffer. Suffering is always there, pious or impious, but a distinction is nevertheless made. But he who knows God becomes freed from all sinful reactions. If we reject God, we can never be happy.
Monday evening, Jan. 2, 1966
Lord Chaitanya says that nobody knows Him. What to speak of human society, if you take the demigods who are more advanced and intelligent, they don't know either. The seven great sages whose planet is near the North Star they also do not know. Krishna says: "I am the Original, the Source of all these demigods." He is the Father of everything. Not only the origin of the demigods but of the sages and the universe itself. The Srimad Bhagawatam describes how the Universal Form took place and everything is emanating from Him. Also the origin of Paramatma and Impersonal Brahmajyoti is in Him. "Of everything, of any conception, I am the Source."
The Absolute Truth is realized in 3 phases. It is One non-dual Truth in 3 phases. Brahman the glowing effulgence; localised Supersoul; and Bhagawan the Supreme Person. There are many expansions of the Supreme Person all planets are emanations from the Superior Deity, as is stated in the Puranas, Upanisads, Bhagwat all is summarized in the Bhagavad Gita.
If nobody knows the Supreme Person of God, how can He be known? He can be known when the Supreme Lord comes before you and reveals Himself to you. Then you can know. Our senses are imperfect, they cannot realize the Supreme Truth. When you adopt a submissive attitude, and you chant, then realization begins from the tongue. To eat and vibrate sound is the business of the tongue. If you can control your tongue for Prasadam and make sound vibration of the Holy Name by surrender of the tongue you control all other senses. If you cannot control your tongue, you cannot control the other senses. You taste and become spiritually advanced. You can have this process at your home: offer food to Krishna and chant the Mantra and offer obeisances:
Namo Bramanya devaya
go brahmana hitaya cha
jagat hitaya Krishnaya
Govindaya namo nama.
Everyone can offer food, and take it with friends, and chant before the picture of Krishna, and lead a pure life. Just see the result the whole world will become Vaikuntha, where there is no anxiety. All is anxious with us because we have accepted this material life. Just the opposite is so in the Spiritual world. No one knows how to get out. Taking an intoxicant doesn't help; the same anxieties are there when you are finished being drunk. If you want to be free and want life eternal with bliss and knowledge, take to Krishna. No one can know Him, but still there is a way. This is the process of Krishna consciousness.
In Srimad Bhagawatam it is stated, nobody can conquer Him or approach Him, but He becomes conquered. How? Let persons remain in their own position, but let them give up nonsense speculation through volumes of books. Thousands of books are printed and read, and after 6 months are thrown away. This way and that way how can you know the Supreme by speculation with your blunt senses? Give up research throw it away just become submissive, acknowledge yourself that you are limited and subordinate to both material Nature and God. Nobody can be equal to or greater than God. So be submissive. Try to hear about the glories of the Supreme Lord from an authorized source. Authority is handed over by disciplic succession. If we can understand by the same authority as Arjuna, that is authority.
God is always ready to reveal Himself. You just become Krishna conscious. Follow the path traversed by the great Acharyas, then everything will be known. And, although He is unconquerable, He can be known in your home, even though the sages themselves don't know Him.
If you take to this process and follow its principles, what will be the result?
As soon as you understand, you will know the Supreme Lord as the Cause of all Causes, but He Who is not caused by any other cause. He is the Master of all planets. This is not accepting blindly. God has given you the power of reason, the power of arguing but don't argue falsely. If you want to know the transcendental science you must surrender. Surrender to authority and know Him by signs. Don't surrender to a nonsense. Find one who is coming in disciplic succession: who is fully convinced about the Supreme Absolute Truth. If you find such person, surrender and try to please him, serve him and question him. Surrender unto him is surrender to God. But question to learn, not to waste time.
The process is there, but if we waste time by intoxication we will never see Him, the Unconquerable. Follow the principles and slowly but surely, without any doubt, you will know as you go along. You'll know you're on the proper path. "Yes, I'm making progress," you'll say. And it is very easy, and you can execute and be in a happy mood. Study, take part with music, Prasadam, and nobody can cheat you by this process. But if you want to be cheated then go to the cheaters.
Try to understand Krishna consciousness from the authoritative source, and apply it in your life. Amongst the dying mortals, you become the most intelligent because you are freed from sinful actions. If you act only for Krishna, then you are freed from all reactions. There can be no anxiety over what is auspicious or inauspicious, because he is in touch with the Most Auspicious. This is the process. Ultimately we can get in touch with Krishna. Life will be successful.
Anyone can adopt it. It is very simple.
Wednesday evening, January 4, 1967
Here is a nice formula presented by Krishna Himself: that one should understand the position of Krishna. He is unborn and without any Cause. We have got the experience that we are born and we have a cause. Our father is our cause. If someone poses himself as God, he has to prove that he is unborn and uncaused. Our practical experience is that we are born. Krishna is not born we have to understand this. Understanding this is to be firmly convinced that He is the Cause but is not caused, and since he is not caused He is the Proprietor of all manifestations. Whoever understands this simple philosophy is not illusioned.
But we are illusioned. We are claiming ownership of the land. Yet, before my birth the land was here, and after my death it well be here still. How long will I go on claiming, in body after body "This is my land! This is my land!" Is it not nonsense?
We should know that whatever we are doing in the material concept of life is illusion. You have to understand whether you are illusioned or not. And all conditioned souls are illusioned. He who learns to be disillusioned gets free of all encumbrances. If you want freedom from all bondage you have to understand God. There is no neglecting this; it is the prime duty of the human form of life.
Out of millions of entities, one may be enlightened. Generally we are all born fools. As soon as I take birth, I am nurtured by parents and educated to falsely claim some land as my own. National education means to make you more foolish. Am I not foolish? I am changing my body and dress here, changing, changing, you have so many minds and dresses why do you claim this one? Why don't you understand: "This dress is nice, but next moment I may be in another." You are in the grip of Nature. You can't say what dress you will have: "Nature, make me American." No, material nature controls. If you live like a dog here, take a dog's dress! If you live godly here, take God! I may be able to dictate to my students, but I can't dictate to the Government. And even the Government cannot dictate to Nature. Out of many fools somebody tries to understand what I actually am dog? American? Russian? This real enquiry goes on. If you enquire, you have to ask someone besides yourself. Crossing the street in a place you don't know, you have to ask the policeman or some gentleman. For what I am you have to go to some authority. What is a spiritual master? He is a person conversant with the science of Krishna. Nobody enquires, but if a man does he can make progress and come to this understanding: Krishna is the Cause of all Causes.
The followers of scripture and higher authority enquire of Krishna. Those addicted to sinful activities can't enquire they go on in intoxication. The righteous, pious man inquires and goes to God. Facility is given to people in the process by the authority to make people happy, not to exploit them. The purpose of ISKCON is this: to understand the science of God. You want happiness. Here it is. You are distressed due to sinful reactions. If there is no sinful reaction, there is no suffering. One who knows Krishna without doubt is relieved of all reactions. Krishna says, "Come to Me and I will give you freedom from all reactions." Don't disbelieve it He can give you shelter He has all power. If I give you that promise, I have no such power and I may have to break my promise. But if you associate with Krishna consciousness your dormant relationship with Krishna will be evoked. You have got a relationship with Him. There is no question of disbelieving, it is simply foolishness, the dormant relationship is there. We want to serve Krishna but simply by the spell of Illusion we think we have no connection with Him. We go on doing all "independent" nonsense, and we are always anxious. When we associate with these dormant feelings for Krishna, we will be joyously engaged in Krishna consciousness.
"God is unborn" indicates that He is different from the material world. We have no such experience of an unborn being here. This city was born. Our history is filled with such dates. Spiritual nature is unborn at once we can see the difference. The material nature is born. You have to understand, if Krishna is Unborn, then He is spiritual and not like one of us. Krishna is not like some extraordinary person who was also born. He is not born. So how can I decide that He is an ordinary man? "Those who are fools and rascals think of Me as an ordinary man," Krishna says in Bhagavad Gita. He is different from everything in this world. He is anadi without any cause.
Krishna may be spiritual, we will admit, but there are other spiritual bodies. We have a spiritual body like Krishna's but it is born. It is not exactly born. It is like the sparks of the fire the sparks are not born apart from the fire it is actually not born, it is there. We are not born we are the sparks come out of the Original Form. Even though we are not born, still the spark is come of Krishna: so we are different, we are not Krishna. Simultaneously we are one and different; the sparks of the fire are fire but they are not the original fire. So far as quality is concerned, we are the same. It is like the difference between father and son. Father and son are different and nondifferent, at the same time. The son is an expansion of the father, but he cannot claim he is the father this is nonsense.
Because Krishna is declaring Himself to be the Supreme Proprietor, therefore He is different from anyone. If I am the proprietor of New York State, I am still not New York State. In every step there is duality. No one can say we are completely and in every way one with God. Analytically studied, you can understand Krishna and your position in a nice way. Then at once you become free from sinful reactions. This process will help you: Chant Hare Krishna and cleanse your mind, and you will catch up the message. One has to be qualified. If you chant and hear, you will approach God. All things will become clear and illuminated. We welcome you to participate.