A.C.Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

The Krsna consciousness movement gives essential knowledge for 
fulfilling the mission of human life.

LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, I thank you very much for your interest in the Krsna consciousness movement. This movement is especially meant for those in human society who are serious about fulfilling the mission of life. There is a distinction between human life and animal life. Animal life means one does not know the proprietor of the body. Those who are under the conception that the material body is the self are as good as animals. But in the human form of life one can understand that one is not the material body but a separate identity, spiritual in value.

We can understand this fact if we give little attention to it. We have been changing bodies since the beginning of our life. We learn from Vedic literature that after sexual intercourse of the male and female, if it is fruitful then the living entity is injected into the emulsion of the two secretions, and on the first night the body takes the shape of a pea. And because the living entity is there, the body grows gradually, and then nine holes evolve, which later develop into two eyes, two ears, two nostrils, one mouth, one rectum, and one genital.

When the body is complete, the living entity becomes conscious. As long as the body is not complete, the consciousness is almost dead. That state is called susupti, or sound sleeping. Then gradually, when consciousness comes, the child within the womb feels uncomfortable and wants to come out. Therefore at the seventh month of pregnancy sometimes the child moves.

That is the process of growing. And after coming out of the womb the body continues to grow. But if the child comes out dead, the body does not grow. Therefore it is to be understood that due to the presence of the spirit soul the body grows, or changes from one form to another. Learned scholars have concluded that the change of body is taking place every moment. But the soul is there from the beginning of the life, and when the body no longer persists, the soul changes to another body. That is called transmigration of the soul.

Transmigration is a fact, but the modern civilization does not deal with the subject. People are under the wrong impression that the body is the self. I have talked with many scholars, and they are also under the same impression that with the end of the body everything is finished. But the fact is different. We can remember our childhood body. We can remember our boyhood body. Although those bodies are not present, I, the spirit soul, the occupier of the body or the proprietor of the body I am present.

Transmigration of the soul is the most important factor for human society to understand. Unfortunately there is no university, no department of knowledge, to understand this important factor. That lacking is very risky.

The soul is transmigrating from one body to another, and there are 8,400,000 species of life. After leaving this body we may accept any one of those species. We do not know which one. That will depend on our action at the present moment. Practically we are preparing our future body. According to our work and mentality, we get a particular body. Therefore we should be very cautious. Any intelligent man can understand that the future life is prepared at present. Just as a boy goes to school and college to prepare his future life, the human form of life is a preparation ground for our future life.

According to Bhagavad-gita we can transfer to other planets also. That is explained in our book Easy Journey to Other Planets. Man is now trying to go to the moon planet. But we get information from the Vedic literature that we cannot transfer ourself by mechanical arrangement to the moon planet. That is a futile attempt. Every planet has a different atmosphere. So to enter into a particular planet, we have to prepare ourself. Even if we go to a foreign country, we have to prepare by getting a visa and a passport. If on this planet we are so restricted, how foolishly we are to attempt to go to another planet without being prepared for entering that planet.

A sane man, an intelligent man, does not wish to enter any of the material planets, because wherever we go in the material world the four miserable conditions of existence are there: birth, death, old age, and disease. From the Bhagavad-gita we understand that even if we enter Brahmaloka, the highest planetary system of the universe, these four principles are there.

We learn from Bhagavad-gita that one day in Brahmaloka is millions of years of our calculation. The scientists say it would take forty thousand years to go there. Who is going to travel for forty thousand years? But from the Vedic literature we can understand that we can enter any planet, provided we prepare for that purpose. The exact words in the Bhagavad-gita are

yanti deva-vrata devan
pitrn yanti pitr-vratah
bhutani yanti bhutejya
yanti mad-yajino 'pi mam

If anyone prepares to enter into the higher planetary systems, said to be inhabited by demigods, he can go there. Similarly, we can go to Pitrloka, the planet of the forefathers, or we can stay on this planet. And at last, if we desire we can enter into the planet of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. So it is all a matter of preparation.

But we must consider that any planetary system within the material universe is temporary. Even though the duration of higher planetary systems is very, very long, they will be annihilated, just as our body will be annihilated. There are different types of body. A human body may exist for a hundred years, but an insect's body may exist for twelve hours. So different bodies exist a relatively long or short duration, but they will be annihilated. But whoever enters Vaikunthaloka, the spiritual planets, gets eternal blissful life full of knowledge.

A human being, if he tries, can attain that perfection. It is very simple. In the Bhagavad-gita the Lord says,

janma karma me divyam
evam yo vetti tattvatah
tyaktva deham punar janma
naiti mam eti so 'rjuna

"One who knows the transcendental nature of My appearance and activities does not, upon leaving the body, take his birth again in this material world, but attains My eternal abode, O Arjuna." People say, "God is great." But if we want to know howGod is great, that can be known from authorized scriptures. In the Bhagavad-gita God Himself describes Himself. So we can know from Him. He says, "My appearance, or My taking birth just like a human being, is transcendental." God's body is not exactly like the human body, but God is so kind that He comes before us as an ordinary human being. Unfortunately, one who does not know about Krsna, or God, thinks that He is like one of us. That point is stated in the Bhagavad-gita. Avajananti mam mudhah: "Those who are mudhas, rascals, think Me as one of the human beings." Actually Krsna is not a human being.

We have the chance to know about God, provided we read the right literature under the right direction. And simply by understanding the nature of God, or Krsna, one becomes liberated. That is stated in the Bhagavad-gita.

With our human intelligence we cannot completely understand the Supreme Personality of Godhead. But with the help of Bhagavad-gita, the statements of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and the spiritual master, we can know God to the best of our capacity. And if we know Him, then immediately after leaving our present body we enter into the kingdom of God.

The Krsna consciousness movement is meant to propagate this higher scientific idea to the people in general. And the process is very simple. Simply by chanting the holy name of God Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare one cleanses the dirty things in the heart and can understand that he is part and parcel of the Supreme Lord and that his duty is to serve Him. And the process is also very pleasant. We chant the Hare Krsna mantra, dance rhythmically, and eat nice prasadam, food offered to Krsna. We enjoy this life and prepare to enter the kingdom of God for the next life.

These discussions are not made-up stories. They are all facts, although to the layman they may appears like stories. But if one is serious, then Krsna, or God, from within helps one understand. And the spiritual master also helps. The spiritual master is called the external manifestation of God. God is situated in everyone's heart as Paramatma, Supersoul. And the spiritual master helps those who are very serious about understanding the Supreme Personality of Godhead by showing them a bona fide spiritual master. In that way a candidate will be helped from inside and outside on how to approach God.

The Krsna consciousness movement is meant for that purpose. The spiritual master, or the living representative of Krsna, helps from outside, and Krsna as Paramatma helps from inside. In both ways the living entity can take advantage and make his life successful. We have many books in this connection. The Krsna consciousness movement is based on the authority of the Vedas, summarized in the Bhagavad-gita and many other books. We have published Bhagavad-gita As It Is, Teachings of Lord Caitanya, Easy Journey to Other Planets, The Nectar of Devotion, Srimad-Bhagavatam, and Krsna. And we publish our magazine, Back to Godhead. We request everyone to understand this movement by reading this authoritative literature.

Our program is to serve human society, to save people from the pitfall of entering again into the cycle of birth and death. That is our great mission.

Thank you very much.