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© 2004 - Hansadutta das
[Posted 23 January 2006]

No Such Thing as Non-reality: There is Reality and There is Madness

A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Srila Prabhupada
Excerpt from Conversation with Devotees in Nairobi, October 29, 1975

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Devotee (1): Srila Prabhupada, I understand Krishna is the Personality of Godhead, and He is the one who create this material world. So my impression is Krishna, He didn't make this material world to be spiritual?

Prabhupada: It is spiritual as soon as you become a devotee, spiritual. We are living in the spiritual world. That I explained last night. So ultimately there is nothing material. Material means when you forget Krishna. That is material.

Devotee (1): My question, Prabhupada, was...

Prabhupada: There is no material. When you forget Krishna, that is material. Just like madness. Madness is not our natural position, but when your brain is deranged, then it is madness. Madness has no separate existence, but when our brain is not in order, there is madness. Similarly, there is nothing material, because everything has come from Krishna. The original source is Krishna. Aham sarvasya prabhavo mattah sarvam pravartate [Bhagavad-gita 10.8]. So the material world, the so-called material world, has come from Krishna. So if it has come from Krishna how it is material? The cause and effect is the same, maybe differently manifested. Just like cotton, cotton made into thread, the shape has changed, but it is cotton. And from the cotton thread, you make cloth. The cloth is cotton. But if I say, "Cotton. Bring cotton," then you'll bring cotton, not this cloth. But the cloth is also cotton. Now understand? Cloth is nothing but cotton. But when I say "Bring cotton," you'll not bring a cloth. You'll bring cotton. So the Krishna is the sarva-karana-karanam [Brahma-samhita 5.1], cause of all effects. So all the effects are Krishna. But you have no such realization. When you understand that this place is Krishna's place, so you can worship Krishna, glorify Krishna. But if you don't realize that it is Krishna's, then you talk nonsense, madman. "This is American property," "It is African property," "It is this. It is that," so many madness. But the shastra says, ishavasyam idam, everything Krishna's. And the materialists, they'll protest... "No. Why everything? It is my country. It is my place." That is material. Similarly, anything coming from Krishna—Krishna is supreme spirit—it is spiritual. The devotees, they understand that "This fruit has come from Krishna. The flower has come from Krishna. Therefore it must be offered to Krishna. It is for use." Otherwise how the fruit becomes spiritual? We take prasadam. How it becomes... the same fruit? No. Because the Krishna consciousness is there, it is spiritual. It is spiritual, but it was not known. When one comes to Krishna consciousness, he understands that everything belongs to Krishna. Hari-sambhandhi vastunah. Everything has got relationship with Krishna. That's the fact. So if anything has got relationship with Krishna, so that is not material. We are going to a house, but it is said "temple." Why? Because there is relationship with Krishna. Otherwise where is the difference between the next house and our house? So Krishna consciousness means that everything is spiritual, but we do not accept it. We accepted something else. That is material.


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