Volumes of books have been written since time immemorial
by philosophers and thinkers to understand: What I am? Where did I
come from? What am I doing here? Why do I have to suffer? So many
books, but only in the authorized books of knowledge, shastras,
we can get the answer, the truth—Bible, Koran, Bhagavad-gita.
We have accepted the Bhagavad-gita, the words of Krishna,
God Himself, Bhagavan Sri Krishna. Bhagavat means from
Bhagavan, or of Bhagavan, spoken by Krishna. God Himself is speaking.
God Himself is teaching us what we are, what to do, what not to do, how
to come back: "Bow down to Me, worship Me, give your love to Me. Surely
you will come to Me." (Bhagavad-gita 9.34) Krishna is
Himself, personally teaching how to get out of the temporary, miserable
existence of material life.
All the [other] books of the world… if they are burned,
nothing will be lost, because it is all just deception.
On the way, we were remembering a short story we had
heard about truth and falsehood. Truth and Falsehood went to the river
and took a bath. They left their clothing on the shore. When they were
finished, Falsehood came out of the water first and put on the clothing
of Truth. When Truth came and saw his clothing was gone and only
Falsehood's clothing was there, he decided not to wear any clothing,
and he went naked. From this, supposedly, comes the saying "the naked
Truth is very obvious. And because falsehood is so
prominent, truth is always shocking. Truth is shocking or outrageous
and difficult to bear, because we live in a world of illusion. We have
accepted ignorance and deception as truth. When truth appears, or when
we hear truth, we find it difficult to accommodate ourselves to it,
because our whole life is a life of deception or falsehood, illusion
Bhagavad-gita is the book of truth, book of
knowledge. There is nothing mysterious in Bhagavad-gita.
Therefore Prabhupada called it Bhagavad-gita As It Is.
Bhagavad-gita existed in many translations
and commentaries—more than 600 in English alone. But he said that no
one ever became a devotee of Krishna, although Bhagavad-gita
was existing in over 600 editions. Emerson read Bhagavad-gita.
Einstein read Bhagavad-gita. Tolstoy read Bhagavad-gita.
Goethe read Bhagavad-gita. All great thinkers have read Bhagavad-gita.
Why did they not become devotees of Krishna? Because they were reading
a Bhagavad-gita which was unauthorized. It was covered by
the speculation of non-devotees. Therefore they could not enter into
the truth of Bhagavad-gita.
We must receive Krishna's words from Krishna's devotees.
This is the secret of Krishna consciousness. That is called guru-parampara.
We are receiving the words of Krishna from Krishna's confidential, pure
devotee. Then there will be no deception. There will be no illusion.
There will be no cheating.
Because Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead,
naturally if I place my name, or if I place my commentary on Krishna's
word, I also become prominent. Krishna is the most prominent. But that
is motivated. That is a materially motivated undertaking… just to get
some prestige. Mahatma Gandhi also carried Bhagavad-gita
everywhere, but he was not a devotee of Krishna. Therefore his
programme failed. His political programme never succeeded. He wanted to
unite India—Muslims and Hindus—but it was divided. He wanted people
should become self-sufficient, produce their own food and cloth, go
back to the village. But he got the opposite. They went to the cities
for industry. On and on, like that. And ultimately, he was
assassinated. He wanted peace, but he got the opposite. We cannot use Bhagavad-gita
for material gain, be it political or economic or whatever.
Bhagavad-gita has only one purpose, which
is to know Krishna and to worship Krishna and go back to Krishna.
Krishna says, "Give up all other responsibilities, all other duties." Sarva-dharmam
parityajya mam ekam sharanam vraja. "Give up all dharma,
and just surrender to Me. I will protect you from all sinful reactions.
Do not fear." (Bhagavad-gita 18.66) This is the purpose,
the whole purpose of the Bhagavad-gita. And anything less
than that, the whole thing is spoiled.
It is very difficult to prevail in truth, because it is
naked. And it is folly to be wise where ignorance is bliss. Sometimes
devotees feel awkward because everything is contrary to Bhagavad-gita.
So they feel intimidated, because they are practically as if naked in a
world where everyone is clothed in deception or falsehood. But Krishna
promises us, "I will protect you from all reaction, sinful reaction. Do
not fear. Do not fear. Don't be afraid." Don't be afraid, but be
faithful to Krishna, to Krishna's words and the words of His devotee.
Chant hare Krishna and be happy. Do not be intimidated by falsehood, by
illusion, by deception because it is so grand. Deception must be grand,
because that's what it is. It's an artificial show to deceive us, like
a magician dresses, speaks and moves in a very impressive, sensational
way, because he's going to deceive us. Truth has no necessity for all
this grandeur and elaboration and deception. It is naked truth. It's
obvious. It's obvious truth. And if you chant the holy name of
Krishna…. Krishna is like the sun, like the light of the sun. And
wherever there is sun, or wherever there is light, there cannot be
darkness. It's as simple as that. If you want to know what is true and
false, chant Hare Krishna and you will see it. As soon as you feel
intimidated, fearful and that checks your chanting, you know that you
are in the presence of falsehood. That's how you know. It's the test,
the acid test. So go on chanting and don't be deceived. Hare Krishna.
Thank you very much.