Published on September 12th, 2022 | by HDG A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada6
LOVE–Perverted And Pure
In a water tank you throw one stone. It becomes a circle. And the circle expands, expands, expands unless the circle comes to the shore. Similarly our loving affair begins from personal self to family, from family to society, community, nation, international. But still, it is imperfect unless the circle reaches to the lotus feet of God. Then it is satisfied.
Prabhupada: Human life is meant for making a solution of all material problems.
Pusta Krsna: Yes.
Prabhupada: That they do not know. That point is missing that there is another life which is eternal, blissful, life of knowledge. But they have no idea that we can eternally live without birth, death, old age, and disease. There is no information, neither education, but there is a life very… If you get eternal life, then the tribulations of material life no longer are there: birth, death, old age, and disease.
But they have no idea or information because there is no intelligent man to understand that there is another life which is eternal, and life of bliss and knowledge. There is no information. That is the defect of the modern civilization, they are living like animals. No intelligence. So actually human life is meant for purifying our existential condition so that we may not be subjected to birth, death, old age, and disease. That they are missing. They do not know, neither there is any education, nor university. This Krsna consciousness movement is trying to educate people on that line. It is not a sentimental religious system, it is an educational system. How one can transfer himself to eternal blissful life. Satsvarupa is there?
Prabhupada: Let him come in. When you have come?
Satsvarupa: A few hours ago.
Prabhupada: So, everything’s all right?
Prabhupada: Explain to them about eternal life.
Pusta Krsna: Eternal life?
Pusta Krsna: Eternal life is described by Krsna in the Bhagavad-gita: ajo nityah sasvato ‘yam puranah.
na jayate mriyate va kadacin
nayam bhutva bhavita va na bhuyah
ajo nityah sasvato ‘yam purano
na hanyate hanyamane sarire
Eternal means without a beginning and without an end. So this body, this human form of life, or tree form of life, or animal form of life, aquatic form of life, it has a beginning and it has an end. But the person, the soul, has no beginning or end. This is described by Krsna that: dehino ‘smin yatha dehe, kaumaram yauvanam jara [Bg. 2.13].
We’ve experienced in our practical lifetime that we were very tiny, youth, we had a small body, child’s body: kaumaram yauvanam. Then youthful body, then we’re having old man, old woman’s body, like this. So practically speaking, this body is constantly changing. Although Krsna gives this example because He is trying to explain a very fine point of understanding, namely transmigration of the soul: that in reality the body that we have is changing at every moment, at every instant.
But we can not see that because our consciousness is not so sharp to pick up when there’s change of body. But Krsna explains, “You can see that you had a small body, now you have a youthful body, now you have an old man’s body.” Actually there is a continuum of change at every moment. So this is the changing material body, and the mind likewise is changing, but the soul, the living entity, is not changing. And this is experienced practically by the fact that in spite of so many changes of body that we had we’ve still the same person.
Just like we can remember when we were young children playing in the park or at the streets, and then older, older, older; going to school; older, family life; older, now retired; now like this (indistinct). So like this the body is changing in so many ways but still I’m the same person. This can be practically experienced. Everyone has this understanding: different bodies but you’re still the same person. So this spiritual identity should be the real concern, athato brahma jijnasa. This should be the real concern of the human society, not this temporary changing body.
The whole human society is presently geared how to satisfy the demands of this temporary body. So we can see practically that this is fruitless. Ultimately we have to give up this body; ultimately we have to give up our connection with society, with family, with everything. So everything should have its proper place naturally, but the real focus of human life should be on the soul.
This is Krsna consciousness, not only the soul, but the relationship of the soul with God. So practically speaking, Krsna consciousness is a spiritual movement. We’re trying to come to the platform, as Prabhupada has been speaking in class in the mornings about sat-dharma: eternal religion or eternal activity of the soul. Sat means eternal. Here in this material world everything is temporary. By accident you may be born in America or in India or in Japan or in a human form or in a cat form, but it’s temporary. But the soul is eternal and there is also a place: paras tasmat tu bhavah anyah [Bg. 8.20].
Another place beyond this material world which is called the spiritual world. And that place is sanatana, that place is eternal, and Krsna also is eternal. So, sat, sat-dharma or eternal occupation of the soul, eternal religion is that the living entity should be in this place, this eternal place where there’s no change of body. That you have to take a body and then give it up, and then according to your work, take another body and then give it up, revolve in the cycle of birth and death unnecessarily.
Go to the sanatana atmosphere, and there the sanatana Lord is there, and there the soul is in its natural environment, and the exchange of love that takes place in this spiritual world, this is Sat-dharma. So this temporary world of birth and death, this is asat. Krsna says, duhkhalayam asasvatam [Bg. 8.15]. It’s asat: it’s a temporary place. We’re taking it to be real just like in a dream we take that the dream is all in all.
But by chanting this mantra, we will awaken from this maddening materialistic way of life which is simply binding us up more and more to this false conception of attachment for this body. Practically we know that we have to give up this body, but still because everyone in the material world… Prabhupada explained this morning, it’s just like a mad-man. People are attached… just like if you are attached to your clothes and you’re thinking that if my clothes are finished, I am finished. So this is a mad proposition. You can always get another set of clothes. Similarly we are different from this body. So to be overly attached to this body or even attached at all is a form of madness. That’s a fact. We analyze this soberly.
Guest (1): You mentioned an exchange of love in the spiritual world.
Pusta Krsna: Yes.
Guest (1): Could you explain that more?
Pusta Krsna: Everyone is exchanging love in this world, we see that practically, that husband and wife are exchanging love, children and parents are exchanging love, friend and friend are exchanging love.
There are so many different relationships in which we exchange love. Even animals like a dog; a cat/dog is exchanging love. It’s been analyzed, experiments have been done that even a plant is more productive when he knows that the person who is taking care of the plant is a friend. They speak about the green thumb. So even plants respond. They are sensitive.
In a sense they are also exchanging love in a simple way. So this loving propensity is natural. The difficulty is that due to ignorance, we’re exchanging love on the bodily platform, which is asat, temporary. And therefore everyone is frustrated. Everyone is frustrated. It’s a false platform of love. So the real platform of love is when we come to the soul platform. Krsna speaks about this in the Bhagavad-gita:
na socati na kanksati
samah sarvesu bhutesu
mad-bhaktim labhate param
That when you come to the soul platform, it’s also called brahma-bhuta stage or platform of the soul, then mad-bhaktim labhate param: that bhakti, bhakti means transcendental love and service to God.
Prabhupada: Bhakti means yes, exchange of love between God and the individual soul.
Pusta Krsna: This becomes awaking of the spiritual platform. So the Krsna consciousness process is gradually to purify one, because that natural loving propensity is there. Our contention, and practically we are experiencing it, is that Krsna consciousness is natural way of life. It’s not artificial imposition. Rather in this present materialistic way of life, so many artificial standards and impositions have been put upon us.
We can see that because culture is always changing. One year this is right to do, the next year that’s right. Everything is simply mental concoction. But this Krsna consciousness process is eternal, it’s never changed. We have history from the Srimad-Bhagavatam. For millions and millions of years people have been engaged in the very same process that we’re following: of chanting the holy names, worshiping the Deity in the temple, taking prasadam, association with saintly persons. The very same process, it hasn’t changed.
And the very same sentiment of love of God is being awakened naturally. So our contention is that the love is simply misdirected. It simply has to be redirected towards Krsna, and the spiritual master, he does this. He takes our energy, our love, our intelligence, our everything and directs it towards Krsna. And as a result, you become purified. A very natural process. Just like we have a propensity to love so rather than waste our love on the temporary forms of the material world, because they’re all perishable. Dehapatya-kalatradisv atma-sainyesv asatsv api [SB 2.1.4].
First of all we love the body, deha. And apatya, we love the family members, the sons, kalatra, we love our wife, adisu we like our community, nation, so many things. But all of these things, they’re temporary. They won’t last, they can’t endure. So all of our love practically is being wasted. It’s stolen.
Prabhupada: There is an example. In a water tank you throw one stone. It becomes a circle. And the circle expands, expands, expands unless the circle comes to the shore. Similarly our loving affair begins from personal self to family, from family to society, community, nation, international. But still, it is imperfect unless the circle reaches to the lotus feet of God. Then it is satisfied.
Svamin krtartho ‘smi varam na yace [Cc. Madhya 22.42]. Here, any loving affairs, that is more or less lusty. A man or woman love each other with some desire, not without desire. That desire is sense gratification. But actually that is lust not love. Pure love can be exchanged in relationship with God. Here there are temporary… A boy, a girl or a man, a woman in relationship of love but it breaks as soon as the lusty desire is not fulfilled.
So here there is no question of love. It is all lusty desire. Real love can be achieved when it is exchanged with Krsna or God. Prema pum-artho mahan, that is the recommendation given by Caitanya Mahaprabhu. That is the highest (indistinct) when we come on the loving platform with God, then we are satisfied. Big, big political leaders in our country like Mahatma Gandhi, he loved his country so much. But the result was that he was killed by his own men, by his country men. But this is not possible when the love is exchanged between God. Kaunteya pratijanihi na me bhaktah pranasyati [Bg. 9.31], a little love for God can save you from the greatest danger of life. That is real love.
So if you love Krsna, then you can love with everyone. Just like we are spreading this Krsna consciousness movement. It is out of love for Krsna. Otherwise we would have sat down at home and love Krsna. Why you are trying to spread this love exchange to others? Because I know or we know that here in this material world, the so-called love exchange is frustrating, and people are being frustrated. So let him love Krsna, then we’ll be successful. This is our mission. Everyone has got loving propensity.
So this child has now love for his mother, for the mother has got… But as soon as the child will grow, the love is finished, he will love somebody else. When he becomes young man, his love is transferred to somebody else. So here the so-called love is not permanent, but when you love Krsna it is permanent exchange of loving humor or mellow. So that is required. Sai this called sai-eva. Sai(?) means permanent it will never end. You’ll relish loving mellows eternal.
aslisya va pada-ratam pinastu mam
adarsanan marma-hatam karotu va
yatha tatha va vidadhatu lampato
mat-prana-nathas tu sa eva naparah
[Cc. Antya 20.47]
Explain this verse.
Pusta Krsna: The eighth verse of Caitanya Mahaprabhu Siksastaka.
Satsvarupa: I do not know anyone but Krsna as my Lord.
Satsvarupa: This is Lord Caitanya. He wrote only eight verses about all this literature. Then there is files and volumes and volumes about love of God. So in this Siksastakam, eight verses, the last verse is translated as, He prays: “I do not know anyone but Krsna as my Lord, and He will always remain as such, even if He handles me roughly in His embrace or makes me brokenhearted by not being present before me. He is completely free to do anything and everything, and He will remain my worshipable Lord unconditionally.”
So this is just the opposite, this is pure love, just the opposite of the, what Srila Prabhupada is explaining that in this material world love is based on some desire that actually becomes a kind of business that “I love you if you will respond in this way.” What to speak of someone saying that “I love you, even if you act as a debauch. You don’t have to be faithful, that’s… You can do as you like in your own way, but my declaration is that I simply want to serve You and You’ll always be my worshipable object.” So love should be like that, otherwise it is simply business that I will give you the product if you give me the money. But the lover is the living being…
Prabhupada: You shall not expect anything in return. That is real love. Just like this mother is loving child, expecting anything — no, not expecting any return. But she still she gives service. So that is as a little sample of pure love. But here also some… When the child is grown up, if the child is not obedient, the mother practically withdraws love. But in the spiritual world, unconditionally love is there. As it is explained, aslisya va pada-ratam pinastu mam. Marma-hatam: [Cc. Antya 20.47] whatever you do, I don’t mind that but still I love you. That is pure love.
Guest (1): As a mother loves the child in pure love, does that help her to also find the pure love in the spiritual world?
Prabhupada: Oh, yes. Just like mother Yasoda is loving Krsna. Nanda Maharaja is loving Krsna. That is pure love.
Pusta Krsna: Srila Prabhupada?
Prabhupada: This, this loving affair with the mother and the son is a perverted reflection of that pure love.
Pusta Krsna: I think he’s asking a question also that sometimes comes up, that if one loves in this material love, for example one loves a child, or loves humanity, does this help to develop love of God?
Prabhupada: No. But if you love God. It helps to love the human beings.
Guest (1): I see, it’s the other way!
Prabhupada: Just like if you supply food to the stomach, it helps the eye sight, but if you supply food to the eyes then you become blind. (everybody laughs)
Guest (1): Thank you.
Devotee: Is Veda important for, like we have our children here. As we come to this movement we’re like children, it’s important how we are molded, we are molded into the Krsna consciousness, as for example a child, it’s important how the mother molds her activities, the child’s activities; mold the child’s life so that nice child grows up, act towards Krsna consciousness. (indistinct)
Pusta Krsna: He’s asking a question, Srila Prabhupada: isn’t it important to mold the activities of ourselves and also the children in coming to this movement; to mold them that so that we can become Krsna conscious?
Prabhupada: Yes, that is (why) our gurukula is there. How these children are becoming Krsna conscious, (indistinct), how they are learning Krsna consciousness. We are doing the same thing, offering obeisances to the Deities, taking prasadam, chanting Hare Krsna mantra. In the same way as his father is doing.
So automatically he’s being trained up in Krsna consciousness. Good association, that is required. Satam prasangan mama virya-samvidah. We are keeping this house for association of devotees so that automatically they become Krsna conscious by association. The most unfortunate position is that there is no education about future life, or the perfection of life. The education is the animal education: the animal (is) eating, we are eating. If we are eating on table, or nice place, nice chair, then we think we are advanced.
But the business is the eating. Similarly sleeping. The dog is sleeping on the street, we are sleeping in good apartment, skyscraper building. They are thinking this is advancement of civilization. But actually the business is sleeping. Similarly sex life. The dog is having sex life on the street, we are having in a very nice apartment. The business is sex. In this way our modern activities are animal activities but in a polished way. But that does not make any difference between the animal propensity and so-called civilized life. Civilized life is there when we understand what is God, our relationship with God. That is civilized life, but that is lacking. There is no such education. The education is only the same animal life in a polished way, that’s all.
Pusta Krsna: Srila Prabhupada, could it be said that in a society where stress is placed on developing this understanding of God, people would naturally become disinclined for these so-called modern activities of sense gratification?
Prabhupada: That is the best qualification. If he becomes disinterested with these so-called modern civilized activities, that is the perfection of life. Bhaktih paresanubhavo viraktir anyatra caisa [SB 11.2.42]. Bhakti means the more you become God conscious, you become disinterested with these material activities. And that is needed, because material activities means you are wasting our time.
What is the value of animal life? It is risky. If we become like animal, then we’ll become animal next birth. Yam yam vapi smaran bhavam tyajaty ante kalevaram [Bg. 8.6]. At the time of death, the mind’s position will give me another body. That is nature’s law. That you do not know. There is no education how the body is being transferred, how the soul is transferred to different bodies. And there are 8,400,000 different forms of body, and at the time of death, according to our mentality, we have to accept by nature’s law a type of body which may not be human body. That we do not know. There is no education. The people are kept in darkness about the laws of nature. That is a very risky civilization.
Devotee: Srila Prabhupada, some might say…
Prabhupada: Just like a… Without any knowledge if we infect some disease, it will manifest in due course of time, and you have to suffer. Similarly without any knowledge we are infecting the modes of material nature and according to that modes of material nature, you have to accept a type of body which may not be very comfortable.
Of course there is no comfort when there is death. We don’t want death, but there is compulsory death. There is no comfort at all. But still the short duration of life, if we have little comfort… But again if we have this comfortable life, then what is the benefit of this comfort? That material laws of nature, we do not know, neither any education about (this). This Krsna consciousness movement is giving that education. Therefore it is not a sentimental so-called religious movement, it is a scientific movement of real education. To solve the problems of life.
Pusta Krsna: I don’t think human society has been educated to even understand the problem what to speak of a cure.
Prabhupada: Problem there is, but he’s a fool. Who wants to die? Why this fire brigade is running here and there? To save life. He doesn’t want to die.
Pusta Krsna: They will say though that everyone has to die.
Prabhupada: They will say that is… Whatever they… Foolishly whatever they may say, then let them say. Actually he doesn’t like to die. Otherwise let there be fire, why you called fire brigade? Let me die peacefully in the fire. (laughter) Nonsense he’s suffering, but still he says there is no suffering. That is nonsense. That is ignorance.
He’s suffering every moment, but he does not know why he’s suffering. That is ignorance. Just like an animal, you are taking into the slaughterhouse. He’s suffering, he’s screaming, but he does not know why you have taken to slaughterhouse (indistinct). And that is animal life. And when there will be question of why I am suffering? I did not want this fire, why there is fire? That is perfection (indistinct). Is there any solution? Then there is human life. And if he remains like animal, and simply try to make some remedial measures… He’s suffering undoubtedly, but because he does not take it seriously, therefore he’s animal. Animal does not take seriously why he’s suffering. That is the distinction between human life and animal life. Suffering is there, but the animal does not take it seriously.
But human life must take it seriously otherwise he’s an animal. There are so many sufferings. This is adhibhau… adhidaivika. Adhidaivika: by — you say accident — by nature, by superior power. Some miserable condition is enforced upon us. Suppose if there is an earthquake, that is not in your hand, but it may cause some havoc. This is adhidaivika. Similar, adhibhautika: Suffering caused by other living entities. And adhyatmika, suffering caused by this body and mind.
So suffering is always there, but we are suffering, we have been accustomed to suffer. But when the question is that why I am suffering, whether there is any remedy? That is human life. Otherwise, the animal life. That is the distinction between animal and human life. If there is fire, and there are animals only, dogs and cats, they cannot call fire brigade. They’ll die, because they do not know how to take measures. But human being immediately calls fire brigade just to try to save himself.
But the suffering is there, either he’s animal or human being. But the distinction is the human being tries to counteract it, the animal cannot. If you simply become subject to this suffering without any remedial measure, then you are animal. And you are suffering and you try for the remedial measure, that is human life. This is plain thing. You cannot say there is no suffering. Suffering is there both for the animal and for the man. The man tries for the remedial measure, the animal cannot. Hm, what is that?
Pusta Krsna: Some of the modern-day cults in America, different philosophies, they say that all of the suffering is experienced within the mind. So they try by meditation to ignore the suffering.
Prabhupada: Or… That’s all right. When there is fire you meditate, why do you call fire brigade? If you are so great meditator, then you go on meditating, why you call for fire brigade? Nonsense, all rascals. (laughter) Simply rascals. Mudha. They have been described as mudha. Rascals, that’s all.
Devotee: Sometimes they say it’s just a dream and they say if you are bothering me, and you are just my dream; I don’t have to worry about it, I’ll have another dream and you’ll go away.
Prabhupada: No but dream is… It may be, but when there is fire, you call it dream, but why do you call fire brigade? When you are diseased why you go to physician? Dream it. (laughter) The major problem is birth, death, and old age, and disease. You do not want that. You must seek the measures. That is human life. Whether birth, death, old age, disease can be stopped? If there is any such life that there is no more birth, death, that is human life. Athato brahma jijnasa. That is the Vedanta philosophy: “Now the human life is meant for enquiring about these things.” If you don’t enquire, then you remain animal.
So this Krsna consciousness movement is trying to save the human society from this animal life. To bring him to the real human life. Animal life means there is suffering — go on suffering. Human life means there is suffering — how to get, how to counteract. That is human life. Suffering — so long you have got this body, there must be suffering.
nunam pramattah kurute vikarma
yad indriya-pritaya aprnoti
na sadhu manye yata atmano ‘yam
asann api klesada asa dehah
The karmis, Rsabhadeva is warning that nunam pramattah kurute vikarma: [SB 5.5.4] these rascals being mad after sense gratification, they are doing everything and anything irresponsibly. Nunam pramattah. Pramattah means mad. Nunam pramattah kurute vikarma [SB 5.5.4]. Things which you should not have done, but he’s doing it. Why? Yad indriya-pritaya: Simply for sense gratification.
Therefore, he advises, na sadhu ayam: this is not good. So why it is not good? Yata: he has already got a body, material body for which he’s suffering, and he’s again creating the circumstance by which he’ll again get a material body and will suffer. Therefore, one should act very responsibly. Not like madmen. Nunam pramattah kurute vikarma [SB 5.5.4]. Then Rsabhadeva instructs, nayam deho deha-bhajam nrloke kastan kaman arhate vid-bhujam ye [SB 5.5.1].
This body, although I have got this body, and the dog has got the body, or the hog has got the body, but these bodies are not meant for being spoiled like the dogs and hogs. The hog is also whole day working to find out where is stool. So if you also work whole day and night for our sense gratification, then where is the difference between the hog’s life and my life. The human life, human brain should be sober to understand what is the problem of life, why I’m subjected to so many tribulations, how to remedy, how to find out the remedy and that requires tapasya. Tapo divyam [SB 5.5.1].
In order to create that brain, it requires a little tapasya. Therefore we are recommending no illicit sex, no meat eating, no intoxication, no gambling. Because we are already mad by material existence, and again we are… If you are forced to become more and more mad by intoxication, by meat eating, by this… Then where is your life? Your life is finished. Because to understand these problems of life requires a little brain. So to create that brain, this little tapasya is required. He’s already puzzled, and if you make him more and more puzzled by supplying him intoxication and this gross eating of meat, then he remains in the grossest platform of ignorance. That is not human activity.
The brain must be little clear to understand what is the value of life, why I am suffering, if is there any remedial measure, how can I take it. That is brain. And if the brain is used only to find out where is sense gratification, where is sex, where is food, where is shelter, where is money? Then, that is, that business is being done by the hogs and dogs. So this Krsna consciousness movement means to save people from this dogs’ and hogs’ life and to come to the real platform of understanding the value of life. They do not know it. Na te viduh svartha-gatim hi visnum durasaya ye bahir-artha-maninah [SB 7.5.31].
They do not know what is the aim of life. Simply by false hopes they are trying to adjust things with material effects. That will never do that. Durasaya. Durasaya means it is useless hope. It cannot be. Just like we practically see that the, here in New York City, American people are very rich and intelligent, but they cannot stop this fire which is unwanted. They cannot stop it. That is not possible. Because they are living very high, 300 feet high or more than that, you are not safe still. You are still in the same danger. Because you are living in big, big skyscraper building, it does not mean that you will not die. Death is there also, birth, death, old age, disease, the real problems of life.
It does not mean that because we have advanced in so-called material civilization, you have avoided birth, death. Even big, big scientists who gave us so many big, big inventions, but still they died. They could not invent something which will protect them from death, that at the time of death, give me this pill so that I will not die and I’ll go on giving you more scientific advance. That is not possible. What is your question?
Pusta Krsna: Some people think that by meditating they can somehow, another ignore…
Prabhupada: Meditating means this subject matter: that I don’t want death, why death is forced upon me? That is real meditation.
Pusta Krsna: So then the problems of life are more than simply those which we perceive?
Prabhupada: Yes. Otherwise, what is the meditation? Think about something seriously, that is meditation. But if you have no important serious thinking, simply some imagination, how it will help you?
Devotee (1): Excuse me, Srila Prabhupada. This evening they are having one convention here, the Democratic National Convention. One of the two big political parties in the city, at one place called Madison Square Garden. And all the television and newspaper people in the whole country will be there. They’re beginning at 8 o’clock this evening. So we want to send all the devotees in the temple on sankirtana party there, because we feel that not only will the atmosphere become purified but also all the television cameras and all the newspaper people will interview our devotees and take their pictures, and they will be on television all over the country, simply because…
Prabhupada: That is good cause.
Devotee (1): So we are requesting if all the devotees can possibly go?
Devotee (1): In that way they can all attend, if we have a big force…
Prabhupada: At least, let them hear Hare Krsna.
Devotee (1): I have a feeling it could be just like with the Chand Kazi. When he was… Lord Caitanya made a civil disobedience mood, perhaps if we chant loudly enough…
Prabhupada: No, by hearing this transcendental vibration they will benefited.
Devotee (2): The actual presidential candidates will be there.
Devotee (2): Presidential candidates, the candidates for the president of the United States, they’ll be there.
Satsvarupa: They’ll all be there tonight.
Prabhupada: All right, go ahead chant Hare Krsna.
Devotee (3): Thank you Srila Prabhupada.
Evening Darsana — July 13, 1976, New York