If after thousand years, they can create one ant, so what is the credit?
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© 2004 - Hansadutta das
[Posted May 5, 2007]

Science Means Observation and Experiment

Srila PrabhupadaHis Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

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

Morning walk with disciples, July 20, 1975, San Francisco

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at the morgue What is the difference between this dead man and living man?

Bahulasva: That psychologist gentleman has to understand he's not the body first.

Prabhupada: Hm. So, what did he say?

Bahulasva: Yeah, he believes that there is soul and that you're not the body, and he's hoping that he'll be able to become more serious about studying Bhagavad-gita to understand that more clearly.

Prabhupada: So let him prove there is soul. That will be great service to the western world, if a scientist and philosopher, psychologist proves that "Here is soul."

Bahulasva: Srila Prabhupada, how should they set out to prove it, though? We've proved it by giving scriptural evidence. But how should a scientist do it?

Prabhupada: No, we prove it as a living and dead man, we give that proof. What is the difference between this dead man and living man? What is losing? What is missing? This is the proof. If... I so many times spoken that son is crying, "My father is gone, my father." "Where is your father gone? He is lying here. So what is gone? You have not seen it." This is the proof. Why do you cry, "Father is gone"? Father is lying here. Why do you say, "gone"? So that means what is gone, you have never seen it. Now you perceive, "Yes, something was there. Now he is gone." This is the proof.

Bahulasva: So our statements are also backed up by observation. The Gita's statements are also backed up by observation.

Prabhupada: Yes. Science means observation and experiment. That is science. You observe that this man is moving. There is something... [sound of someone calling from a distance, Prabhupada calls:] Invite him. You are invited come. [laughter]

Dharmadhyaksha: Srila Prabhupada, the psychologist is in ecstasy every time he speaks to you.

Prabhupada: Hmm. No, he is a good boy. Although I say, "You do not know anything." [laughter]

Tamal Krsna: He didn't become angry?

Prabhupada: No.

Brahmananda: He admitted.

Prabhupada: He is good man.

Bahulasva: He has some humility.

Guru das: You tell everyone that and they come back for more. [Prabhupada chuckles]

Bahulasva: So science means observation, Srila Prabhupada.

Prabhupada: Yes, observation and experiment.

Bahulasva: And experiment.

Prabhupada: Yes. That is science. [break]

Guru das: To make an experiment by chanting Hare Krishna.

Prabhupada: No. Here is experiment, just like the dead man and living man. First of all, you observe that this man is moving or this animal is moving. There is some moving force. And the experiment is when the man and animal is dead, you can understand that the moving force is gone. This is experiment.

Tamal Krsna: Your car is here, Srila Prabhupada.

Jayatirtha: We can walk further if you like.

Prabhupada: Oh, yes. [break]

Siddha-svarupa: The psychologists feel limited by the particular means of experimentation that have already been used by other psychologists.

Prabhupada: What experiments they have made?

Siddha-svarupa: Well, these particular tests and so on that they're using. So it seems that he ought to change. Because somebody started doing that, right? I mean, they didn't always use those tests. They always change different kinds of tests and everything. Instead of being limited, he should offer a new method of observation, a new method of tests.

Prabhupada: It is simple, but because of their bad education, they cannot understand the simple thing.

Bahulasva: They want everything complicated.

Prabhupada: Complicated. The experiment is there. Observation is there. Everything is there. And the eternity is there. Krishna begins like reasonable gentleman, not humbug. He says, tatha-dehantara- praptih [Bhagavad-gita 2.13], very good example, that "As in this, body is changing from this stage to this stage, this stage, this stage, step by step, similarly," tatha dehantara-praptih, "similarly another body." So where is the difficulty to understand? So if this is accepted, then immediately you can accept that the soul which is changing body, he is eternal. Na jayate na mriyate. Therefore he was never born, never died.

Jayatirtha: When Arjuna came, he was suffering so much distress, but Krishna did not give him any psychological test to see what was the matter with him. He immediately knew it was because he was in the bodily conception of life.

Tamal Krsna: Prabhupada, the thing is that you say that it is life which makes matter move, but the scientists, they don't accept that.

Prabhupada: Because they are rascals. How it is moving?

Tamal Krsna: They say it's a certain combination of matter.

Prabhupada: You make it. That means experiment. You simply observe, but you have no experiment. Therefore it is not science.

Brahmananda: You have to demonstrate knowledge.

Prabhupada: Yes, demonstrate. You make in the laboratory that things are moving by this combination. Otherwise it is useless. Therefore two things must be there: observation and experiment, practical and theoretical. Theoretical—something is there who is moving. Now you make it practical to see that this combination... Just like they say chemical combination. Now take the chemicals and make experiment.

Tamal Krsna: No, the thing is that they are now in the test tube they are making experiment, and they are putting a certain set of chemicals together and maybe some soul takes shelter of those chemicals. But the scientists say that they get the credit for it. They don't say that the soul has entered. They say, "No, we have put different elements together, and now some..."

Prabhupada: No.

Bahulasva: They have never done that successfully.

Prabhupada: And even they are successful, what is credit? So many living entities are coming every minute, and if after thousand years, they can create one ant, so what is the credit? [laughter]

Science Means Observation and Experiment/ WORLD SANKIRTAN PARTY
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