Published on September 11th, 2023 | by HDG A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada19
Prabhupada on Abortion
Fathers and mothers have protective feelings for their children even in bird and beast society, not to speak of human society. Kali-yuga, however, is so degraded that a father and mother even kill their children in the womb…
SB 6.16.14 P King Citraketu Meets the Supreme Lord
In this verse the word bala-hatya-hata-prabhah is to be particularly noted. The practice of killing children has existed in human society for a long time–since time immemorial–but in the days of yore it was very rarely performed. At the present moment, however, in this age of Kali, abortion–killing of the child within the womb–has become very common, and sometimes a child is even killed after birth. If a woman performs such an abominable act, she gradually loses all her bodily luster (bala-hatya-hata-prabhah). It is also to be noted that the ladies who had committed the sinful act of administering poison to the child were very much ashamed, and according to the directions of the brahmanas, they had to undergo atonement for killing the child. Any woman who has ever performed such an infamously sinful act must atone for it, but no one now is doing that. Under the circumstances, the women responsible must suffer in this life and the next. Those who are sincere souls, after hearing this incident, should refrain from such child-killing and should atone for their sinful activities by taking to Krsna consciousness very seriously. If one chants the Hare Krsna maha-mantra without offenses, all of one’s sinful actions are surely atoned for immediately, but one should not commit such deeds again, for that is an offense.
SB 7.2.37 P Hiranyakasipu, King of the Demons
In the Mahabharata it is said, adarsanad ihayatah punas cadarsanam gatah. This statement could support the theory of the atheistic scientist that the child in the womb of the mother has no life but is simply a lump of matter. To follow this theory, if the lump of matter is aborted by a surgical operation, no life is killed; the body of a child is like a tumor, and if a tumor is operated upon and thrown away, no sin is involved. The same argument could be put forward in regard to the King and his queens.
The body of the King was manifested from an unmanifested source, and again it became unmanifested from manifestation. Since the manifestation exists only in the middle–between the two points of unmanifestation–why should one cry for the body manifested in the interim?
SB 7.2.55 P Hiranyakasipu, King of the Demons
Another point in this verse is that fathers and mothers have protective feelings for their children even in bird and beast society, not to speak of human society. Kali-yuga, however, is so degraded that a father and mother even kill their children in the womb on the plea of their scientific knowledge that within the womb the child has no life. Prestigious medical practitioners give this opinion, and therefore the father and mother of this day kill their children within the womb.
How degraded human society has become! Their scientific knowledge is so advanced that they think that within the egg and the embryo there is no life. Now these so-called scientists are receiving Nobel Prizes for advancing the theory of chemical evolution. But if chemical combinations are the source of life, why don’t the scientists manufacture something like an egg through chemistry and put it in an incubator so that a chicken will come out? What is their answer? With their scientific knowledge they are unable to create even an egg. Such scientists are described in Bhagavad-gita as mayayapahrta jnanah, fools whose real knowledge has been taken away. They are not men of knowledge, but they pose as scientists and philosophers, although their so-called theoretical knowledge cannot produce practical results.
SB 9.9.31 The Dynasty of Amsuman
You are well known and worshiped in learned circles. How dare you kill this brahmana, who is a saintly, sinless person, well versed in Vedic knowledge? Killing him would be like destroying the embryo within the womb or killing a cow.
SB 9.9.31 P The Dynasty of Amsuman
As stated in the Amara-kosa dictionary, bhruno’rbhake bala-garbhe: the word bhruna refers either to the cow or to the living entity in embryo. According to Vedic culture, destroying the undeveloped embryo of the soul in the womb is as sinful as killing a cow or a brahmana. In the embryo, the living entity is present in an undeveloped stage. The modern scientific theory that life is a combination of chemicals is nonsense; scientists cannot manufacture living beings, even like those born from eggs. The idea that scientists can develop a chemical situation resembling that of an egg and bring life from it is nonsensical. Their theory that a chemical combination can have life may be accepted, but these rascals cannot create such a combination. This verse refers to bhrunasya vadham–the killing of a bhruna or destruction of the embryo. Here is a challenge from the Vedic literature. The crude, atheistic understanding that the living entity is a combination of matter belongs to the grossest ignorance.
SB 10.7.4 P The Killing of the Demon Trnavarta
There is no question of overpopulation or of children’s being a burden for their parents in a Vedic society. Such a society is so well organized and people are so advanced in spiritual consciousness that childbirth is never regarded as a burden or a botheration. The more a child grows, the more his parents become jubilant, and the child’s attempts to turn over are also a source of jubilation. Even before the child is born, when the mother is pregnant, many recommended ritualistic ceremonies are performed. For example, when the child has been within the womb for three months and for seven months, there is a ceremony the mother observes by eating with neighboring children. This ceremony is called svada-bhaksana. Similarly, before the birth of the child there is the garbhadhana ceremony. In Vedic civilization, childbirth or pregnancy is never regarded as a burden; rather, it is a cause for jubilation. In contrast, people in modern civilization do not like pregnancy or childbirth, and when there is a child, they sometimes kill it.
We can just consider how human society has fallen since the inauguration of Kali-yuga. Although people still claim to be civilized, at the present moment there is actually no human civilization, but only an assembly of two-legged animals.
When the krpanas have too many children, they suffer the scorching heat of family life, and then similar leaders advise them to undertake family planning. The idea of this family planning is that sense pleasure should not be curtailed, but birth control should be accomplished by artificial measures. Such methods of birth control are called bhruna-hatya, or killing the child in embryo. Such killing is a sinful act, and in the revealed scriptures a specific hell is designated for those who commit such sins.
JSD 6.5 Slaughterhouse Civilization
They are sending animals to the slaughterhouse, and now they’ll create their own slaughterhouse. [Imitating gunfire:] Tung! Tung! Kill! Kill! You see? Just take Belfast, for example. The Roman Catholics are killing the Protestants, and the Protestants are killing the Catholics. This is nature’s law. It’s not necessary that you be sent to the ordinary slaughterhouse. You’ll make a slaughterhouse at home. You’ll kill your own child–abortion. This is nature’s law. Who are these children being killed? They are these meat-eaters. They enjoyed themselves when so many animals were killed, and now they’re being killed by their mothers. People do not know how nature is working. If you kill, you must be killed. If you kill the cow, who is your mother, then in some future lifetime your mother will kill you. Yes. The mother becomes the child, and the child becomes the mother.Mam sa khadatiti mamsah. The Sanskrit word is mamsa. Mam means “me,” and sa means “he.” I am killing this animal; I am eating him. And in my next lifetime he’ll kill me and eat me. When the animal is sacrificed, this mantra is recited into the ear of the animal–“You are giving your life, so in your next life you will get the opportunity of becoming a human being. And I who am now killing you will become an animal, and you will kill me.” So after understanding this mantra, who will be ready to kill an animal?
So their theory, this atheistic theory, is aparaspara-sambhutam. It has taken by mechanical arrangement. Kim anyat kama-haitukam. Kama. Just like kama–a man, a woman becomes lusty, and there is sex, and there is production. So they say like that. The production is like that. There is no other plan. But there is a big plan. That they do not know. The plan is: yada yada hi dharmasya glanir bhavati bharata, tadatmanam srjamy aham. That is plan. But these rascal, this atheist class, they say, kim anyat kama-haitukam: “Only lusty desires, that is the only reason. That is the only cause.” The atheist class think like that, that “This birth is taking place due to our lusty desires, but we do not want to take responsibility. Then kill him. What is that?” Therefore they are making this abortion, killing of the child, as legal. The kama… “We had some lusty desires, and we got it, but we don’t want it. Kill it.” That’s all. This is going on. This is atheism. But it is not that. That child has come. It is a living entity. It desired a certain thing, and therefore he has given chance to take birth as human being or as cat, as dog. Kama-haitukam.
Tivram bhayam. What you are accepting, spelled by maya, as very position, good position… I have told you many times. It is published in now…, that therefore, the rascal class of men, they want to…, they do not want to accept that there is life after death. “Everything is finished.” Therefore in Western countries there is killing even grown-up child within the womb. They are killing, abortion. They think there is no life. Unless it comes out of the womb, there is no life. It’s all nonsense theory. All nonsense theory, simply committing sinful life one after another and becoming entangled. The result will be that he will have to enter again into the womb of mother and he will be killed. He will be killed not once. He will be killed again when he enters the womb of the mother; again he will be killed. For many, many years he will not be allowed to see the light of the sun.
So these children… Kaumara acaret prajno dharman bhagavatan iha. That is Prahlada Maharaja’s instruction, that you produce children as much as you can train them to become eternally family members of Krsna. That is spiritual contraceptive. Don’t produce children like cats and dogs. This is our philosophy. If you can produce Krsna conscious children, produce one hundred children. There is no objection. But if you cannot do that, then either don’t produce children or produce children as much as you can manage. This is Krsna philosophy. Our philosophy is not simply a negation. It is positive. They, general people, they are unnecessarily producing children, then cannot manage. So they are adopting so many sinful activities, so much so that they are now killing their own child within the womb and becoming implicated in sinful activities and prolong the life in this material world very miserably. Just see the miserable condition of the child, baby within the womb. She is… It is in the mother’s womb, and the mother, at the advice of the doctor, is killing. Why? Because that child–now it is child–he did it. He killed so many other children in his previous life; now he is being killed. Not only in one womb, but he will enter another womb–he will be killed. As many children he has killed, he will be killed in this way. But they do not know. They do not know this, blind, mudha, that how nature’s law is going on, how tit for tat is going on. They do not know it. Therefore this Krsna consciousness movement is to give them right knowledge and become free from all sinful life. So long there is sinful life, you cannot be allowed to enter into Krsna’s family. That will not be allowed.
Prabhupada: Yes, therefore kill in the womb. That is killing, the abortion, killing. That means advance of… advancement of ignorance is accepted as advancement of civilization. Why? The beginning is that there is no spiritual knowledge. Therefore the so-called advancement of ignorance is accepted as advancement of civilization. That is due to want of that basic principle of spiritual knowledge. Hare Krsna. (devotees chant japa) (break)
Prabhupada: Then you have to accept that your killing child, abortion, that is sinful.
HDG A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada