The success of whatever we do in life will be tested by our ability
to remember the Supreme Lord at the time of death.
janma-labhah parah pumsam
"The highest perfection of human life, achieved either by complete knowledge of matter and spirit, by practice of mystic powers, or by perfect discharge of occupational duty, is to remember the Personality of Godhead at the end of life." Srimad-Bhagavatam 2.1.6
Ante narayana-smrtih. At the time of death, if you can remember Narayana Narayana or Krsna, the same thing then your life is successful, whatever you do. Very big stalwart spiritualist or yogis say, "Everything is leading to the Supreme." That has been described here: sankhyayoga, karma-yoga, jnana-yoga, or dhyana-yoga. These yogis say, "Whatever path we may follow, ultimately we go to the same goal." That is very nice, provided you actually go to the same goal. Otherwise, it is misleading. You say, "Whatever path one may take, it leads to the same goal." We accept that. That is described here. Ante narayana-smrtih. Whatever you have done may be very good, but at the time of death, if you forget Narayana, then it's all useless, all useless.
Because that is the point your mentality at the time of death. At that time, if your mentality is about Narayana, then your life is successful. You will be transferred to the spiritual world and associate with Narayana. You get complete perfection. But if you think of your dog at the time of death, then you go to become a dog. Finished. All your sankhya-yoga and philosophy and yoga practice all go to hell. You become a dog.
One has to remember Narayana at the time of your heart. Lord Krsna's service, you always have the .death. Then why not directly practice remembering Narayana? What we are doing is the correct practice for that. The deity is there; the form of Narayana, or Krsna, is there. If you always engage in Lord Krsna's service, you always have the impression of Krsna within your heart.And if you continue it some way or other, then your life is successful.
Otherwise big, big talks, nose pressing, and keeping the head down you can do that, waste your time in that way. But will that guarantee that at the time of your death you shall remember Krsna or Narayana? That remembrance of Krsna is wanted ante narayana-smrtih as Sukadeva Gosvami, the authority, says here.
There is a Bengali proverb. Bhajana kara sadhana kara murte janle haya: "You are very good transcendentalist. You are practicing so many nice things. That's all right. But do you know how to die? That is the point. If you die with God consciousness, Krsna consciousness, then your life is successful."
We Are Not God
[Reads from his Purport:] "Narayana is the transcendental Personality of Godhead beyond the material creation."
Narayana is not a person like us.The Mayavadis say,"Narayana is a person like us. So I can remember anyone. I can remember my wife; I can remember my husband or my child. Still, I am going to the same goal."
No, no, no. That is not possible. Therefore it is particularly said, ante narayana-smrtih. Not your other friend or other demigod or . . . No. Narayana-smrtih: "Remember Narayana."
[Reading:] "Everything that is created, sustained, and at the end annihilated is within the compass of the mahat-tattva (material principle)." In another place it is said,
dharmah svanusthitah pumsam
notpadayed yadi ratim
srama eva hi kevalam
"The occupational activities a man performs according to his own position are only so much useless labor if they do not provoke attraction for the message of the Personality of Godhead." (Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.2.8)
That is also referred here: etavan sankhya-yogabhyam. Big, big sannyasis are discussing sankhya-yoga, metaphysics, or analyzing what is spirit, what is matter. Neti neti: "Not this." This is called sankhya-yoga. And the original sankhya-yoga is bhakti-yoga. The philosophy of the sankhya-yoga system was spoken by Kapiladeva, the son of Devahuti. That is purely bhakti-yoga. Later on, an atheist assumed the name Kapila and discussed sankhya-yoga. His is a materialistic analysis.
The sankhya-yoga system of philosophy is very much liked in Europe and Western countries because it is a system of metaphysics analyzing the whole cosmic manifestation.There are twenty-four tattvas. The first five tattvas are the material elements: earth, water, air, fire, and ether. Then ten senses: five senses for acquiring knowledge and five senses for enjoying. Then five principles of enjoyment: sound, form, touch, taste, and smell. Then mind, intelligence, ego, and finally the soul. In this way there are twenty-four elements.
The sankhya yogis very much analyze this study. They are of the opinion that besides these twenty-four elements, there is nothing more. No. There is: the one who is combining and annihilating the twenty-four the Supreme Lord, pradhana, Visnu.
Whether you take the atheist Kapila's philosophical principle or that of the original Kapiladeva, that's all right. But after analyzing, if you do not find Narayana, the creator of this material atmosphere and the material elements, then it is only so much useless labor. The chemists and physicists are analyzing the material elements within the laboratory. But that does not mean they are going to all be liberated at the end of life. No. You are spirit soul.You are entangled with these twenty-four elements. So your real business is how to get out of it. That is wanted.
Suppose you are a diseased fellow and you analyze the disease. That is called pathology.The doctor examines your blood and he finds out, "This is an infection, that is an infection, this is this, this is this." That's all right. But simply understanding the blood analysis, pathology, does not mean one is cured. The cure is different.
Similarly, these sankhya-yogi philosophers may analyze very critically. They may even count the atoms composing the whole material atmosphere. But that does not mean they have understood the original force that has created all these things. That is discussed here. Etavan sankhyayogabhyam. You can become a very big scientist, a very big physicist or chemist.That is all right. But you must know how to remember Narayana at the time of your death.
The Scholar And The Boatman
An interesting story has been described in Back to Godhead: The learned scholar and the boatman. In Bengal there are many rivers, and so people generally travel by boat service. So a learned scholar from Calcutta, say, was going home to his village on a boat, and he was very happy.
He asked the boatman, "My dear boatman, do you know astronomy? Do you know how these stars are working?"
"No, sir, I do not know."
"Oh, your life is twenty-five percent lost. You do not know anything."
Then after some time: "Do you know geology? Do you know how earth and water are working?"
"No, sir, I am poor man. What can I know?"
"Oh, fifty percent of your life is lost."
Then all of a sudden there was a black cloud in the sky, and there was a storm.
The boatman asked, "Sir, do you know how to swim?"
"No, I do not know."
"Then one hundred percent you have lost." [Laughter.] "You are going to be drowned."
He jumped and he drowned.
This is the point. You are trying to understand the whole analytical study of the material world. That is very good. But if you do not know how to remember Narayana at the time of death, then you are going to be cats and dogs. That's all. Because you are very fond of dogs. Especially in the Western countries, every gentleman, every lady has a dog. So what will you think of at the time of death? Dog.
That is nature's law. Yam yam vapi smaran bhavam tyajaty ante kalevaram. You will find this in the Bhagavad-gita [8.6].At the time of death, the mental condition you have created will carry you to the next body. Therefore don't create a doggish mind. Make it Krsna conscious. And that is very nice. Then at the time of death you will remember Krsna and you will be transferred to Krsnaloka. Therefore it is advised, "Whatever you may be, it doesn't matter. Practice Krsna consciousness. That will save you."
Otherwise, janma-labhah: getting different types of births. So-called scientists and physicists do not know why there are so many varieties of life. Why not only human beings? Why are there cats, dogs, rats, flies, serpents, trees, creepers, fish 8,400,000 species of life? They also take birth from a father and mother. Whether for the insect, the cat, the dog, or the human being, the process of birth is the same. Therefore a Vaisnava poet has sung, janame janame sabe pita mata paya, Krsna guru nahi mile bhaja hari ei: Whether you take birth as a man or a cat or a dog or an insect, there is the father and mother. You will get a father and mother in any type of birth, but not guru and Krsna. Therefore this birth is meant for achieving guru and Krsna.
Janmana jayate sudrah. Even in human society, every man is born a sudra. Samskarad bhaved dvijah. He requires a second birth, by samskara, reformation.The spiritual master gives the second birth, which is spiritual initiation. For the second birth, the father is the spiritual master and the mother is the Vedas. As the first birth is possible because of the material father and mother, the second birth, dvija, is possible because of the spiritual master (the father) and Vedic knowledge (the mother).That is possible in the human form of life.
If you do not take the privilege of accepting the second father and mother, then what is the difference between your birth and the dog's birth? You have got this human form of body, the best body. That is the instruction of all Vedic literature. But what is this material civilization? Simply working like cats and dogs. The same eating, sleeping, sex intercourse, and defending as animals.There are so many buildings in your city, Paris.Where is the culture to make the human life perfect? You have got very nice buildings. There is intelligence. So many nice buildings. People come to see the buildings. But that is not all. If you use your intelligence simply for the material activities, then you are not intelligent. You are a fool.
You must make a cultural institution where people may take education on how to remember Narayana at the time of death. That is required. Otherwise your activities are useless. What is their value? You waste so much time to construct a very nice house, but at the time of death you cannot remember Narayana. You remember your very nice friend your dog. What is the value of that?
People do not understand that there is life after death. Lord Krsna says in the Bhagavad-gita (2.13):
dehino 'smin yatha dehe
kaumaram yauvanam jara
dhiras tatra na muhyati
"As the embodied soul continuously passes, in this body, from boyhood to youth to old age, the soul similarly passes into another body at death. A sober person is not bewildered by such a change." It is very simple philosophy. But the rascals will not understand it. I am changing my body. You may say it is growth, but in any case it has changed. I had a childhood body; that body is different from my present body. It has changed. Therefore I have already changed my body so many times. And I will change my body after this body is no longer useful.
An example is given: I put on this sweater, but when it is torn, no longer useful, I give it up. I get another one, a new one.This body is a dress.Therefore we do not give so much importance to the bodily dress.We stress the soul.We do not make the distinction that "This is Hindu dress, Muslim dress, Christian dress, white dress, black dress." No, no, we have nothing to do with the dress. We have to do with the soul within the dress. He is part and parcel of Krsna. He has forgotten Krsna. Therefore he is suffering.
Therefore our movement is meant to revive Krsna consciousness and go back home, back to Godhead. This is the purpose of the Krsna consciousness movement. Ante narayana-smrtih. It is a very important movement. Those who are very intelligent can take to it. Or you become intelligent or not intelligent, but know at least that unless one is pious, he cannot take to this movement. But somehow or other, if you take to this movement, then your valuable life is successful. Janma-labhah parah pumsam.
It is not cats' and dogs' life. It is the human form of life. Utilize it properly. "Properly" means to become Krsna conscious, not dog conscious, cat conscious. No. These will not help you. Krsna conscious. Then you will be able to remember Krsna at the time of death and your valuable life will be properly utilized. Janma-labhahparah pumsam. You have a very nice, valuable body, but it will be properly utilized if you learn how to remember Narayana at the time of death.
Thank you very much.