Here is something, you accept it, and your sufferings will be mitigated.
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Fire in the Forest

Human civilization means to make a solution to suffering

His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Founder-Acharya of the world-wide Hare Krishna Movement, Brahma Sampradaya Acharya

Srila Prabhupada

Morning walk with disciples, December 15, 1973,  Los Angeles. 



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Stop the suffering

Svarup Damodar: The sky is quite clear.

Prabhupada: Yes. Can you change it? Can you change it?

Svarup Damodar: No. [laughter]

Prabhupada: Then what kind of scientist you are?

Svarup Damodar: A rascal scientist. [Prabhupada laughs]

Candanacarya: Srila Prabhupada, may I put a question?

Prabhupada: Yes.

Candanacarya: Yesterday I made the acquaintance of a theologist, a professor from the University of Montreal. He said that the Roman Catholic presentation of Christianity is that God came to share the suffering of man.

Prabhupada: That is another rascaldom. Why God should share the sufferings of man?

Candanacarya: I asked him this, and he said, "So that man would accept more as reality, suffering."

Prabhupada: Very good theologician. A rascal number one. You are trying for becoming happy, and his theory is that man will accept suffering. You see? The very proposition is rascaldom. Everyone is trying for to become happy. That is progress. Atyantika. In Sanskrit it is called atyantika-duhkha-nivrittih. There is suffering, and our struggle for existence means to, I mean to say, mitigate the suffering, to minimize or to make it nil. That is our struggle. We are not submitting to suffering. Then what is the civilization? What is human civilization: We don't want suffering. That is our position. Why this rascal says that "We shall suffer"? Just see. The theologician is a rascal. Therefore we say everyone rascal.

Prajapati: The same theologician, Prabhupada, he calls himself an atheist theist.

Prabhupada: Eh?

Candanacarya: He said, "I am an atheist theist."

Prabhupada: Atheist theist? What is this?

Prajapati: Just rascal, double talk.

Prabhupada: Another rascal. Another rascal proposition.

Candanacarya: I asked him, "How can a theologist be an atheist?"

Prabhupada: The whole thing is that because the whole world is full of rascals, they are all talking nonsense. No meaning. No meaning. It is only we, we have pointed out that "You are a rascal. You speak all nonsense." Now, taking this word atheist, what does he mean by atheist?

Candanacarya: Without theism?

Prabhupada: No, no, that is not explanation.

Svarup Damodar: Atheist means not believing in God.

Prabhupada: Yes. Say like that. Don't say in a negative way. In a positive way. What does it mean? Atheist.

Prajapati: He says there is no God.

Prabhupada: There is no God. Then what do you mean by God? Next question. Next question will be what do you mean by God?

Candanacarya: So he'll say the conception which has been presented by the different religions.

Prabhupada: What is your conception? Why do you go to different religions? You are talking with me. So you say, what do you mean by God? Next question will be this. Don't go to others. Don't fly away. You are atheist. You are posing yourself atheist. Atheist means one who does not believe in God. That's all right. Now what do you mean by God? First of all the thing must be there. Then you believe or not believe next. Just like here is a person. He says, "I believe in him." I say, "I don't believe in him." But the person is there.

Karandhara: Well, he'll say, "God is just an idea."

Prabhupada: Idea?

Karandhara: Yes. But ideas don't always represent facts.

Prabhupada: So idea is there. You say that it is not fact, but others say it is a fact. So how it will be mitigated? How it will be settled? "God" word is there. You say that it is an idea.

Devotee: A "sky flower" is an idea, but it's not fact.

Prabhupada: No, just like God, let us stick on word, that God... You say it is an idea only. I say it is not an idea. It is fact.

Karandhara: Well, then they say, "By objective empirical analysis it has to be researched, scientific."

Prabhupada: Oh, then let us analyze, analyze. Let us analyze. That... We say that God means Supreme, Supreme Being. So how you can say that Supreme Being is an idea? How you can say? You accept Supreme Being. So how you can say it is idea? It is fact.

Karandhara: Well, they say there is no necessity for a Supreme Being.

Prabhupada: No, there's a necessity. If you don't accept, then you will be beaten with shoes. Because as soon as there is light, you have to accept supreme authority.

Karandhara: But that's an authority we have imposed upon ourselves.

Prabhupada: Yes, because there is need, therefore you have done it. There is necessity.

Karandhara: Well, some of them say, because people are generally ignorant, therefore we need this idea of God.

Prabhupada: But you are less than ignorant. You are less than ignorant. You are less than rascal. If I call you a rascal, then I give you some honor.

Karandhara: Lenin said that God is just opiate of the people, just to keep them intoxicated.

Prabhupada: No, no, no, no. That means Lenin wanted to become God. That's all. The God idea is there, but he cannot be God. Because he was under the laws of God, he died. He died. He could not save himself from death. Therefore he is not supreme authority. He accepted supreme authority, but he wanted himself to become the supreme authority. Now, when he died, he is not supreme authority. He is forced to die. Then there is another supreme authority.

Karandhara: Well, then they can say ultimately death is meaningless anyway.

Prabhupada: Why meaningless? Then why you are afraid of death when I come to kill you?

Karandhara: Well, that it's meaningless doesn't mean I can't place some value on it at any given point.

Prabhupada: Why meaningless? It has meaning. Then why you are fighting? Why you fought for Russian Revolution?

Karandhara: Well, they give the example like numbers. Numbers are only useful for a purpose, but actually they are meaningless.

Prabhupada: The purpose is meaningless then. Then your purpose is meaningless.

Karandhara: Yes, they say ultimately everything is meaningless.

Prabhupada: Then you are a rascal. You are working for meaningless things. Then you are a rascal. That's all. And that is my version, that you are a rascal number one.

Karandhara: Well, they say everyone can introduce their own meaning to whatever they want.

Prabhupada: No, then why do you try to get many followers? Let them do their own work.

Karandhara: No, to proliferate your own meaning.

Prabhupada: No, no, you have got own meaning. You be satisfied with your own meaning. I have got my own meaning. Why do you bother me?

Karandhara: Well, my meaning may be to bother you. That may be part of my meaning.

Prabhupada: Then my meaning is to beat you with shoes. [laughter]

Karandhara: Lenin, no one ever beat him. He was not beat. He beat everyone else.

Prabhupada: No, no. He was also beaten—by death. He died also. That means even if he is beaten, he will not accept it. He is such a rascal. He is such a rascal. He is being beaten every moment. He is becoming old. He is becoming diseased. He is dying. Still says, "I am not beaten. I am not beaten."

Candanacarya: Actually, he still thinks that he's beating death because they put his body in a tomb...

Prabhupada: Yes, he is being beaten every moment, every second, and still, he will say, "I am not beaten." That is rascal number one. One is accepting that "Yes, I am being beaten." He is sane man. And one who says that "I am not beaten," he is getting old, and every moment he is being beaten, and still he says, "I am not beaten."

Karandhara: Well they have a philosophy called existentialism, that so long something exists, we can place value on it, but when it ceases to exist, there is no remorse. There is nothing to lament.

Prabhupada: There is no nothing to lament, but why don't you exist? Why you struggle for existence?

Karandhara: But they say if you have money in your hand, as long as you have it you can utilize it, but if you lose it, don't worry. It's nothing to lament.

Prabhupada: But they worry. I have practically seen. They cry.

Karandhara: Well, they just fall short of their philosophy, the philosophy they hold as ideal.

Prabhupada: So, these are all no argument. No sane man will accept this argu...

Karandhara: Most western people are so frustrated, they accept these philosophies wholeheartedly.

Prabhupada: Yes. That is frustration. That is not real life. That is another thing.

Karandhara: But like you say in Bhagavad-gita, they are so angry with all types of speculation that they become frustrated and disgusted.

Prabhupada: Yes. Frustration is not life. Frustration is frustration, disappointment. That is not life.

Karandhara: They say that frustration is the only reality.

Prabhupada: No. That's for you.

Karandhara: Absurd, the absurd philosophy.

Svarup Damodar: That means they do not know the value of life.

Prabhupada: Yes, that's it. That means rascaldom. That means rascaldom.

Karandhara: One of their chief philosophers, his name was Camus. So after he was propounding this philosophy and writing many books, one night he was driving in his car, and he decided that "There's no meaning, so why not just drive my car off a cliff?" So he just drove his car off a cliff, finished himself off.

Prabhupada: Mad, madmen.

Karandhara: But his books are in colleges especially. Millions and millions of students accept his books as practically gospel.

Prabhupada: What is the subject matter of the book?

Karandhara: Subject matter of his books, that life is ultimately absurd. There is no real meaning to it. We place our own meanings on it, but those are...

Prabhupada: So you are trying... Why you are trying to explain it? Why you are trying to explain it?

Karandhara: Yes, actually he is trying to make reason out of the absurdity.

Prabhupada: To prove absurd is his reason? That means absurd reason.

Karandhara: Well, that's what he ultimately realized, that everything is absurd. There is no use speaking, writing or even living.

Prabhupada: No, no, the thing is that you are saying "absurd," I am saying, "not absurd." Who will settle up this? That is the... If you settle your own affair. I settle my own affair. So who will settle up, whether I am right, you are right?

Srutakirti: It will be settled at death.

Prabhupada: That's all. Mrityuh sarva-harash cha. The death is equally acceptable by you and me, but... And it is also a fact you don't want to die; I also don't want to die. Then there is authority.

Karandhara: No, but in his case he didn't care. He died willingly.

Prabhupada: No, no. He didn't care, but he always takes care. That is a fact. He always takes care.

Karandhara: No, but on this instance, he died willingly. He wanted to die.

Svarup Damodar: But he might be pretending. Might be died, but he was thinking that he'll not [indistinct]

Karandhara: But he killed himself.

Prabhupada: Yes, he did not want to die, but just to keep prestige, he might have died. That's all.

Karandhara: I think he wanted to die. [laughter]

Prabhupada: Then if you want to die, let me kill you immediately. You will be happy.

Rupanuga: He wrote another book called "Nausea" wherein he wrote how life made him sick to his stomach.

Prabhupada: That means madman. Sometimes madman commits suicide. He's a madman, that's all.

Karandhara: Practically, in the last three hundred, or two hundred years, all the most famous writers, and scholars and intellectuals, they all became madmen.

Prabhupada: Yes, they must be, because they do not know what is to be known. Their knowledge is imperfect.

Karandhara: Nietzsche, Freud, they all died madmen.

Prabhupada: Madman means when one becomes frustrated, he becomes mad. That is the...

Karandhara: But the people, after them, they think that their lives were very great. They read their books and accept their authority.

Prabhupada: There are two classes of men. We don't say their life was great. So therefore I say, who will settle? I am right or he is right? Always you will find the madman will say, "I am right." Another man say, "You are not right; I am right." Then who will settle up? That is the point. You will find always these two classes of men. You say you are right, I say I am right.

Candanacarya: But by committing suicide, didn't he accept that finally death was the only thing that was not absurd?

Prabhupada: Yes, for them the death is the only solution.

Prajapati: Rascals like such books, Prabhupada, because it requires no commitment on their part. To read such men—"Oh, yes, that's very nice. I can read them and put them down." But it doesn't require me to trust in God or to do anything for the world.

Prabhupada: No. Books are written in favor: "If you want to know more about us, then here is book." Because from books, generally, we get knowledge. Otherwise book is not required. [Pointing to the sky] Very brilliant light.

Srutakirti: It's an airplane.

Prabhupada: And if the light is little more brilliant, that means finished. If the same light becomes little more brilliant, that means finished, fall down immediately. It is a big aeroplane? [break]

Prajapati: Several years ago you gave a series of lectures in New York on atonement, that are very famous, and devotees, they relish them very much. Prayashchitta. And this is also in Christian theology to a large extent, plus another concept called feeling very sorry for one's sinful activities.

Prabhupada: Repentant. Repentant?

Prajapati: No so much repentance. It is called...

Karandhara: The classic idea is that one goes away and just lives in a state of remorse, solitude and remorse, thinking how sinful and wretched he is, and performing severe austerities.

Prabhupada: Huh?

Karandhara: Going away, living in a monastery, performing severe austerities, and always contemplating how sinful and wretched we are and how we must suffer.

Prabhupada: Everyone is suffering. But one who knows that he is suffering, he is intelligent. Everyone is suffering. If you are not suffering, why you have covered? Why you have covered? Because you are suffering, is it not? Why you are not naked body? Because we are suffering, therefore we have covered. It is a fact. And if somebody says, "No, we are not suffering," then he's a madman. So everyone is suffering. One who knows it, he is intelligent man. That's all.

Rupanuga: They have no positive philosophy. They stress guilt. They are always guilty. They have no positive philosophy.

Prabhupada: Yes. No... Then the next question is that "If there is a positive philosophy to mitigate the suffering, why don't you accept it?" Just like when one body is suffering, I say, "Take this blanket. Cover." If he says, "No, I am not going to take it," is that sane man?

Svarup Damodar: Then he will continue suffering if he doesn't accept.

Prabhupada: Yes, yes. Our proposition that everyone is suffering and struggling, how to stop the suffering. This is material world. Everyone is suffering. And the struggle is called progress. So we are offering something also: "Here is something, you accept it, and your sufferings will be mitigated." Nobody can say, "No, we are not suffering." That is insanity. Everyone is suffering.

Prajapati: This suffering comes from our sinful activities?

Prabhupada: Yes. Therefore Krishna says, aham tvam sarva-papebhyo mokshayishyami [Bhagavad-gita 18.66]. I shall give you protection from sinful reaction of your life because you are suffering for sinful reaction. Suffering means if you disobey the laws of the state, you suffer. That is sinful. Because you have disobeyed the laws of the state, you are suffering.

Candanacarya: If one has difficulty becoming Krishna consciousness, is that suffering?

Prabhupada: No, what is the difficulty, first of all?

Candanacarya: You once said if someone is not attracted to chanting, then he is being punished by Yamaraja.

Prabhupada: Yes. So if you, if by chanting Hare Krishna mantra, you can save your suffering, what is the difficulty, not to accept it? Everyone is suffering in this material world. And everyone is trying to get out of the suffering. That is also a fact.

Prajapati: They try to get out of suffering by committing more sins.

Prabhupada: Yes. Because they do not know how to get out of the suffering. [break]

Candanacarya: ...to tell people who think that they are not suffering that they are actually suffering.

Prabhupada: That means it is difficult to teach insane person. That's all. Therefore the best means is, without teaching, "Please come here, chant Hare Krishna mantra, and takes little prasadam and go home." Then his insanity will be cured. Then he will be all right. This is our point. We don't sermonize in the beginning. We simply request, "All right, you are very good. Nobody is more intelligent than you. Yes. Please come here, sit down, chant, dance. It is very nice, and takes little prasadam. Go home." That is our program. Then we teach. When he comes to his little sanity, then he will be cured. [break]

Prajapati: ...Srila Prabhupada, the theologians call contrition. Means an actual thinking about how sinful we are, actually meditating on our sinful condition.

Prabhupada: Yes, simply meditating on sinful condition, that is also good. But what is the counteraction? That we must know. Just like one man is suffering from some disease. He knows that "I have infected this disease." So simply thinking, "Oh, I have been infected by this disease," that is not good. He must go to a physician to cure it. That is intelligence.

Karandhara: Yes. Or it's like a criminal. If he commits a crime, it's nice that he laments, but he can't just lament. He has to start working positively.

Prabhupada: Yes, he must go to the state and offer, "Please kill me." Then state may consider. "I have committed this murder, so the law is: I must give my life. So I am prepared." Then immediately he will be excused. Yes. [break]

Karandhara: ...a devotee came and told Prabhupada that he committed some wrong doing, and he was very, very sorry, and he was crying and very sorry, and you said, "That's all right. That's nice. Now do something about it. Engage yourself in Krishna's service."

Prabhupada: Yes, yes, yes. That is the duty of the physician. If somebody comes, patient: "Sir, I am suffering like this." "All right, don't be sorry. Sit down. I will give you medicine." [break]

Prajapati: ...what these rascal philosophers do, psychologists and scientists, they say the things that are very sinful actually, that Krishna says and the Bible and all of scriptures say are sinful, they say, "That's all right. You may do those things." Not only do they deny God's existence, but they say that which is sinful is actually good for you: "Yes. You must have intoxication, take illicit sex life," like that.

Difference between a bucketful of water and the cloud

Prabhupada: No good man will say like that. That is the difference between good man and bad man. The same example as I told, that one blind man is going this side, and another man says, "Yes, you are all right. Go this side." This is going on. Either he does not know, this rascal who says, "Yes, you can go this side," that he will fall down in the ocean and die... Both of them do not know. So one blind man, andha yathandhair upaniyamanah [Srimad-Bhagavatam 7.5.31]. One blind man is giving direction to another blind man. This is going on. Therefore Vedic injunction is to take direction: "You must go to guru." That is in... Tad-vijnanartham sa gurum evabhigacchet [Mundaka Upanishad 1.2.12]. Gurum eva, "Must go." Then he will get right direction. Otherwise misguided. [break]

Candanacarya: ...there must have been very many gurus. Were there many gurus then?

Prabhupada: When? Guru or... First of all, try to understand what is the meaning of guru. Guru means heavy. So one who knows more than you, or one who knows perfectly, that, he is guru. So if you know anything perfectly, then you are guru. But if you do not know anything perfectly, then you are not a guru. You are rascal. So guru means one who knows perfectly. So if you find out somebody, that he knows everything perfectly, then he is guru. That is the first prayer of Gurvashtaka. Samsara-davanala- lidha-loka-tranaya karunya-ghanaghanatvam. Everyone is in the blazing fire of this material existence. It is just like forest fire. Just like if there is fire in the forest, all the inhabitants of forest, all the animals, they become so much in perturbed condition. So guru means to rescue from this forest fire. So therefore it is said, ghanaghanatvam. A forest fire can be reduced or can be extinguished... Fire, there must be water. But wherefrom the water will come? Your fire brigade, bucket full of water, will not save. The water must come from cloud. So therefore guru is the cloud. He has taken the mercy from the ocean, or from God, and he pours the mercy. Immediately the fire is extinguished, and you are saved. This is the samsara-davanala-lidha-loka-tranaya karunya-ghanaghanatvam, praptasya.... One who has received mercy from the Supreme, he can save. Nobody can save. Your so-called fire brigade bucket or bucket full of water will not save. That is not possible. So as these rascals are simply trying to extinguish the blazing fire of material existence by so-called bucketful of water, it will not save. It will be waste of time. If the cloud comes, then it will be saved. So guru is the cloud. That is... Samsara-davanala-lidha-loka-tranaya karunya-ghana.... Ghanaghanatvam means cloud, dense cloud. As soon as there is dense cloud and pours water, finished, all blazing fire finished. That is guru. And Narottama dasa Thakura says, somsara-bishanale dibanishi hiya jvale: "My heart is burning by the fire of this material existence." Judaite na kainu upaya: "I did not make any arrangement for getting out of this fire." Golokero prema-dhana, hari-nama-sankirtana: "Now this hari-nama-sankirtana is coming from Goloka, from the spiritual world. I did not take care of it." He is lamenting. So this is the fire extinguish instrument. Chant Hare Krishna in this age, and the fire will be extinguished. [break] ... prema-dhana hari-nama-sankirtana, rati na janmilo kene taya. [break]

Prajapati: ...shaktyavesha-avatara?

Prabhupada: Guru is the mercy incarnation of God, mercy incarnation. God is kind to everyone, so He is teaching everyone from within, but still, to make it still more explicit, He sends His mercy in the form of guru.

Prajapati: The shaktyavesha-avatara means Krishna coming in a form of a living entity empowered by him for some special purpose.

Prabhupada: Yes, yes.

Candanacarya: Guru is greater than shaktyavesha-avatara.

Prabhupada: No, guru is considered as Krishna Himself. Guru-rupa krishna hana avatara. Just to teach the conditioned soul, guru comes himself, er, Krishna comes Himself in the form of guru. Therefore we sing in the Vishvanatha Chakravarti Thakura's prayer, sakshad-dharitvena samasta- shastraih: "In every shastra, guru is accepted as directly Krishna." Sakshat. Sakshat means directly. Sakshad-dharitvena: As Krishna, is accepted in every shastra, sakshad-dharitvena samasta-shastrair uktas..., it is said, uktas tatha bhavyata eva sadbhih, and this statement is accepted by advanced devotees. It is not only statement, but it is accepted. But the next question is: "Does it mean that guru is Krishna? Therefore no more Krishna wanted?" No. Kintu prabhor yah priya eva tasya: "Guru is exalted because he is very confidential servant of Krishna." Here it is clear. Not that he is respected as Krishna, therefore he has become Krishna. This is Mayavada: "He has become Krishna." No. Kintu: "But don't think that there is no more Krishna, finished. Guru is here." Just like the Mayavadis say, just like this rascal Guruji, that "I am Krishna." Not that. Kintu prabhor yah priya eva tasya. He is the most confidential servant. Vande guroh sri-charanaravindam. This is clear explanation. Although he is respected as good as Krishna, but he never says that "I am Krishna." He says, "I am servant of Krishna." And actually he is the most confidential servant of Krishna. Therefore we distinguish in this line that sevya-bhagavan and sevaka-bhagavan: "worshipable God and worshiper God." You follow? God, but worshiper God.

Svarup Damodar: Person Bhagavatam.

Prabhupada: Yes. Both of them God, but one God is worshipable, and another God is worshiper. So for the disciple, both of them are worshipable because both of them are God. That is the distinction. Sevya-bhagavan, sevaka-bhagavan.

Prajapati: Therefore, when we hear the words of guru, we are actually hearing Krishna.

Prabhupada: Yes. That is said, yasya prasadad bhagavat-prasadah. If you please guru, then Krishna is pleased because he is saying the same thing. Just like we are... What we are doing? Krishna says, sarva-dharman parityajya mam ekam sharanam vraja [Bg. 18.66]. We are saying that "You just surrender to Krishna." We are inventing nothing. Therefore I am guru. Because I am saying Krishna's words, not my words, therefore I am guru. As soon as I say my words, then I am not guru. This is the significance.

Rupanuga: You are the only one, Srila Prabhupada, who claims to be servant. The rest of them take Krishna's position.

Prabhupada: Yes. Because they are not guru. They are not guru. That is the difficulty, that one who is not guru, he is taking the place of guru. Therefore people are misguided.

Rupanuga: One man who has written a book on these different so-called spiritual movements has remarked that Your Divine Grace is the only one of all... The big difference between our movement and the others is that you claim to be servant, and the others claim to be God.

Prabhupada: He has written? Oh.

Rupanuga: It is in a book talking about different spiritual movements in this country.

Prabhupada: So he has appreciated this?

Rupanuga: He has made that remark. He has noted that difference.

Prabhupada: [laughing] Therefore I am unique. Yes. Then I can, become unique. Yes. I am not amongst the rascals.

Rupanuga: I tell the students... They ask me how they can distinguish between gurus. I tell them the real guru claims to be servant, and not God. I said only one guru says he is servant. That is Srila Prabhupada. And they can understand that.

Candanacarya: Sincere people will appreciate that.

Prabhupada: Yes.

Prajapati: In the early days of this movement, Srila Prabhupada, in New York, devotees said they did not know how to treat Your Divine Grace. They did not know your exalted position. I think we are still very much offensive.

Prabhupada: No, I am servant. I have no exalted position. Servant. Chaitanya Mahaprabhu sat down in a place where people were washing their feet. Yes. [break] ...a representative of Krishna. I came to preach Krishna consciousness, and Krishna has sent so many representatives to help me. I consider like that. Without your help I could not do. So I wanted Krishna's help, so Krishna has sent you. Therefore you are representative of Krishna. That is my conception.

Prajapati: We're just dogs, Prabhupada.

Prabhupada: No.

Prajapati: Barking at your feet, that's all.

Prabhupada: That is your humbleness. That is nice.

Prajapati: Not humbleness. That's fact.

Prabhupada: Hare Krishna. [break]

Candanacarya: ...that there are some things that the guru says that the disciple does not accept.

Prabhupada: What is that?

Candanacarya: He says that there are some things that the guru says that the disciple will not accept.

Prabhupada: Who says?

Candanacarya: Jayadvaita told me that in the shastra it says that. So when the guru says that the disciple is nice, he does not accept.

Prabhupada: [laughing] That is very good quality. Oh, Jayadvaita has written like that?

Candanacarya: No, he was telling me that it was in one shastra.

Prabhupada: No, it is very intelligent. Yes. Just like guru does not accept, although he is worshiped like Krishna, he never accepts that "I am Krishna." That is our parampara system. Shishya has to accept guru as Krishna, but guru will never accept that he is Krishna. This is our relationship. Sakshad-dharitvena samasta-shastraih. Samasta-shastraih, all revealed scripture.

Svarup Damodar: This is the unique quality of Vaishnava.

Prabhupada: Yes.

Svarup Damodar: Nowhere we can find these things.

Candanacarya: One time, Srila Prabhupada, you said, "I will go to hell," but none of your disciples accepted that.

Prajapati: Actually, coming to this country, this is hell.

Prabhupada: No, I am not in hell. I am with the devotees, so how can I say I am in hell? [break] Narottama dasa Thakura says, tandera charana sevi bhakta-sane vas: "My duty is to serve my guru and live with the devotees." That is Krishna's grace. "My mission is to serve my guru, but live with the devotees."

tandera charana sevi bhakta-sane vas
janame janame hoy ei abhilash

"This is my desire life after life." A guru or bhakta does not aspire that he is going to Vaikuntha, Krishna. "Never mind." But their only desire, his only desire, is that to serve the predecessor acharya and live with devotee. That's all. This is the only ambition. [break] ...says, tatra tishthami narada yatra gayanti mad-bhaktah. Where, the place where the devotees are glorifying the Lord, Krishna is there. So if Krishna is there with the devotees, then wherever devotees are there, that is Vaikuntha. That is Vaikuntha. Just like our temple. It is Vaikuntha. Because the devotees are chanting the glories of the Lord, so that is Vaikuntha. Vaikuntha is not limited. Vaikuntha, as Krishna can expand Himself, similarly, Vaikuntha can also be expand, Vrindavana can expand. So wherever there is Krishna, that is Vaikuntha. And where is not Krishna? And that is to be appreciated. Then if anyone appreciates Krishna everywhere, then he is living in the Vaikuntha. He is not living in hell or Los Angeles. [break]

Svarup Damodar: ...where pure devotee goes, that place is immediately purified as soon as he is there.

Prabhupada: Yes, because Krishna helps. As soon as the pure devotee sings, Krishna immediately comes there. So it becomes Vaikuntha.

Prajapati: We are more fortunate than gopis, Srila Prabhupada. Walking with you on the beach is better than dancing rasa dance in Vrindavana.

Prabhupada: [laughing] It is not like that, but we can say, wherever Krishna topics are there, it is as good as Vaikuntha or Vrindavana. [break] ...prasangan mama virya-samvido bhavanti hrit-karna-rasayanah kathah. By association, bodhayantah parasparam. These things are there in the Bhagavad-gita. [break] ...enjoy and be satisfied in the association of devotees. [break] ...article on the subject of "Krishna, the supreme scientist," and let us publish it. That article is very nice. If he writes such articles, the conclusion, if Krishna, the supreme scientist, Krishna, the supreme economist, Krishna, the supreme philosopher, Krishna, the supreme chemist, Krishna— everything, the conclusion is Supreme, Krishna—then his activity is fulfilled. He becomes successful. The conclusion should be Krishna. That's it. Whatever he may be. He may be a musician, he may be artist, he may be physicist, he may be chemist, he may be scientist—whatever he may be, if he writes article on the subject matter and concludes that Krishna is the Supreme, then preach, then he is successful. That's all. Just like you are theologian. You write theology and prove, "Krishna is the Supreme Lord." Then your attempt is successful. [break] We are trying to understand the Supreme, so therefore, as soon as you come to the Supreme, you are successful. [break] ...uttama-shloka-gunanuvarnanam. This is success. With your talent, you simply come to the conclusion that Krishna is the Supreme. That's all. So our business is, because we are neither scientist nor musician, nothing of the sort, layman, we have simply said, "Krishna Supreme." That's all. Never mind what I am. [break] ...janmanam ante jnanavan mam prapadyate. This is understanding of Supreme. "After many, many births, one who is wise, he will accept Krishna and surrender."

bahunam janmanam ante
jnanavan mam prapadyate
vasudevah sarvam iti
sa mahatma sudurlabhah
[Bg. 7.19]

He is mahatma, great soul, who is accepting like that, that Vasudeva, Krishna, is everything."

Prajapati: You are the supermost mahatma, Srila Prabhupada.

Prabhupada: Hare Krishna.

Prajapati: Thank you so much.

Svarup Damodar: Jaya Prabhupada. All glories to Prabhupada. Hare Krishna. [end]


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