Progress means when you conquer death.
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© 2004 - Hansadutta das
[Posted May 14, 2007]

Drowned Horses

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 24, 1975, Los Angeles

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Apollo-Soyuz Spaceships on every planet

Jayadvaita: The scientists say that material nature is supreme, but because we're unable to accept nature as the supreme entity, different cultures have gotten different ideas of God. They've made these things up. The Greeks had one idea, the Romans had another idea, the Indians had one idea. So we've accepted that instead of accepting nature, although nature is actually the supreme.

Prabhupada: No, God is realized only by the devotees. Bhaktya mam abhijanati yavan yash chasmi tattvatah [Bhagavad-gita 18.55]. So actually, God is realized through devotion. There is no other way. So in the proportion of one's development of devotional spirit, one realizes God. Ye yatha mam prapadyante tams tathaiva bhajamy aham [Bg. 4.11]. The proportion, devotion, required. But real process is devotion.

Jayadvaita: But how can that be scientifically presented? How can we accept that scientifically?

Prabhupada: No, no, these rascal scientists, they cannot understand God. Those who were actually advanced, just like Professor Einstein and others, they believed so, that there is God; there is brain. Somebody was talking about another scientist, big scientist? Who was talking about?

Jayadvaita: That Werner Von Braun.

Prabhupada: Aha.

Jayadvaita: That space scientist, he has accepted that there must be God.

Prabhupada: He has, yes. So those who are really scientist...

Paramahamsa: Srila Prabhupada? Using modern observatories or large telescopes, scientists have photographed other brahmandas. At least to my impression they appear to be other solar systems. Like they have a sun and planets around them. Does that mean the material covering between the different brahmandas is invisible?

Prabhupada: Yes.

Paramahamsa: Is that correct?

Tamal Krsna: But one of the coverings is earth.

Prabhupada: This is the covering of the universe. Covering you as far as you can see, that is covering.

Tamal Krsna: Aren't there coverings of the eight elements?

Prabhupada: Yes, that is above.

Tamal Krsna: So he's saying that they have seen beyond that.

Prabhupada: How they can see?

Paramahamsa: That was my question.

Tamal Krsna: Prabhupada says how can they see?

Prabhupada: No, they take all these stars as sun. But that is not fact. Sun is one. In each universe there is one sun in the middle. In this universe in the middle, from the circumference, two billion.

Tamal Krsna: Two billion.

Prabhupada: And above the sun there is moon. Then Mars, then Venus, like that. One million six hundred thousand miles above, above, above.

Tamal Krsna: So the moon is further away than the sun.

Prabhupada: Yes. Therefore I say they have never gone to moon. Never gone.

Hrdayananda: What is that? Rahu. [break]

Nalini-kantha: They say that they can see stars trillions of miles away.

Prabhupada: But they cannot go. That's a fact. According to their estimation, the moon is the nearest. So they cannot go there. [break] Moon is one of the heavenly planets. So unless one is very advanced in karma-kanda, offering sacrifices, nobody can go there. It is not so easy. Urdhvam gacchanti sattva-sthah [Bg. 14.18]. Those who are more and more higher status of goodness, they are promoted in the highest planet. Not by drinking wine and driving a sputnik one can... [laughter] It is not so easy. [break] ... [the residents there] also drink soma-rasa. The residents of the moon, they live for ten thousand years.

Tamal Krsna: Ten thousand of their years.

Prabhupada: Yes, deva.

Tamal Krsna: And their years are equal to six months...

Prabhupada: Six months equal to one day. Such ten thousand years.

Paramahamsa: Srila Prabhupada, another field of study that Werner Von Braun is considering is unidentified flying objects. Now, this previously was not acknowledged by scientists, but he recently stated that when they have sent rockets into outer space they filmed objects that there's no explanation for. They think that they're spaceships from other planets.

Prabhupada: Yes, that's... There is Siddhaloka—without any aeroplane they can go from one planet to another. They are so perfect.

Paramahamsa: So these, what they think are spaceships, perhaps are demigods?

Prabhupada: Spaceships there are in every planet.

Paramahamsa: On every planet.

Prabhupada: But there is a planet. The residents of that planet, they can go without any spaceship. Siddhaloka.

Radhavallabha: Scientists have done another test where they think... The scientists are doing tests where their opinion is that from certain acids life is coming. So they think that this can only happen...

Prabhupada: Asses?

Radhavallabha: Acids, nucleic acids. So their opinion is that this can only occur in an atmosphere of methane. So they have understood from their telescopes that Jupiter has methane in its atmosphere, so therefore they say, "Very soon Jupiter will have life."

Prabhupada: Very soon? Not now? They have got advance. Yes. [chuckles] Most of the scientists, they think only living beings are on this planet, and all, they are vacant. They say.

Paramahamsa: Yes. They say the closest planet that could have life is four light years away. That means the fastest...

Prabhupada: How there is life within this sand? We can see.

Paramahamsa: They do not believe.

Prabhupada: No, there is no life within the sand?

Paramahamsa: In the sun.

Prabhupada: No, no, in the sand. You'll find so many lives, many millions. How there is life in the water? There is life in the water, there is life on the land, there is life in the air, so where is there no life? How you can say there is no life? That is foolishness. And they say that the dust brought from the moon planet is the same. It can be found here. So why there should not be life?

Paramahamsa: If there is life on other planets then they assume it's in a plant form or very, very low, like plants, bushes at the most.

Prabhupada: That is their opinion.

Tamal Krsna: Srila Prabhupada? If these scientists, they landed on the Rahu planet, that means that...

Prabhupada: That could be, but some... Just like somebody was saying that there are many planets unknown. They might have gone to some... Just like there are many parts of the world you have never seen. Even on this planet, you cannot say that you have seen all the parts of the world. That is not possible. [break]

Paramahamsa: As far as these unidentified flying objects that Werner Von Braun was recently mentioning, he says that previously they've had many sightings. They've seen these and filmed these, but they're afraid to release them or the government is afraid to acknowledge them because they're afraid it would cause a panic amongst the world.

Prabhupada: What is that panic?

Paramahamsa: A panic that everyone would be frightened with the fact that there are people from other planets.

Prabhupada: And they are not frightened? Without this knowledge they are not frightened, as if they are safe. [laughter] Are they safe without that knowledge? They are frightened of your atomic bomb. Who is not frightened? Who is that rascal who is not frightened? Is there any person who is not frightened?

Paramahamsa: A fool.

Prabhupada: Fool is also frightened when there is stick. Everyone is frightened. That is the one of the conditions of material life. As eating is one of the items, similarly frightening is also... And the more one is godless, he is more frightened.

Paramahamsa: There is this question about these, again, UFO's, whether or not they are aggressive or if they will bring us more knowledge than what we have. So there's this fear, uncertainty.

Prabhupada: This frightfulness is due to unawareness of God. The more one is unaware of God, he is more frightened. One who is fully conscious of God, he is not frightened because he knows, "Everything is God. Why shall I afraid?"

Paramahamsa: Even death.

Prabhupada: Death is already declared that "I am death." Krishna says. So there is no question of.

Tamal Krsna: There's a description in the Bhagavatam of Dhruva Maharaja when he's fighting all of those demons, that he wasn't frightened at all.

Hrdayananda: So the devotee sees Krishna in death also.

Prabhupada: Yes, Krishna is everything. Without Krishna, there cannot be anything. Janmadyasya yatah. The example is given: Just like the rope. Somebody is taking it is snake. He is frightened. And one knows this is rope, he is not frightened. So actually the one thing—God is one—He is distributed in so many manifestations. So one realizes that it is God. By His energy He is manifested in so many forms. So why he should be frightened?

Tamal Krsna: That's an uttama-adhikari.

Prabhupada: Yes.

Jayadvaita: Now, in the modern days, they take it the other way, that "Everything is God, so I can do anything."

Prabhupada: But you are not God. You are rascal. [laughter] That is Mayavada theory—that "Because God is everything, therefore I am God." That is Mayavada. Just like Vivekananda said, "Why you are finding out here and there God? Here is God, so many, on this street." That is his theory.

Jayadvaita: There was a book-yesterday someone was showing me—where Meher Baba was saying that everyone is in God and therefore everyone is God.

Prabhupada: [chuckles] Everyone is within the space; therefore everyone is space? [laughter] Just see the logic. Such rascals, they are God.

Paramahamsa: Last week, Prabhupada, you may have read that the Russians and the Americans sent up two rockets that met in outer space.

Prabhupada: Hm, so what is the benefit?

Paramahamsa: Well, this is the point, is that... It was called the Apollo-Soyuz flight. In any case, they have announced... They made a joint speech where they said, "Together we can conquer outer space. That is the purpose." So now the Russians and the Americans are trying to get... to combine in their efforts to conquer.

Prabhupada: Bora bora goye gala rasatala, vetta gore bole katha jala. There is a river. The horses, they can swim. So the river was so ferocious and many horses drowned. So one vetta gora, means third-class horse, he said, "How was the water? Let me try."

Paramahamsa: [laughing] They all drowned.

Prabhupada: The vetta gora. These are vetta gora, horses...

Satsvarupa: But they can point to progress, not that they're all drowning.

Prabhupada: What is that progress?

Satsvarupa: Well, people never thought they could reach the moon. Now they think they have.

Prabhupada: So that is not progress. Progress means when you conquer death. That is progress.

Tamal Krsna: Why is that the only progress?

Prabhupada: Because whatever you do, death will come and take it. So where is guarantee that you will enjoy?

Tamal Krsna: Relatively we can enjoy.

Prabhupada: Relatively everyone... The ant also thinking, "I am also some important..." That is Krishna's proposal, janma-mrityu-jara-vyadhi duhkha-doshanu... [Bg. 13.9]. You are trying to get out of all kinds of miserable conditions, but here is your real misery, janma-mrityu-jara-vyadhi: birth, death, old age... First of all conquer them. Then talk of advance. You cannot conquer even on disease. There are so many persons suffering from disease. You cannot stop it, and you're making progress? What is that progress? It is all rascaldom.

Tamal Krsna: But we see that even your devotees, they are also subject to birth, death, disease and old age.

Prabhupada: No, we do not say that we are making progress like you. We are trying to make spiritual progress. We are servant of God. We never say that we are very big men, Vaishnava. Trinad api sunichena. We think most insignificant creature.

Paramahamsa: But what of our efforts to conquer cancer and tuberculosis?

Prabhupada: No. Because we are conquering to... We are trying to avoid death. Then it is... Everything is cured. Cancer, cancer's father, grandfather, everything is cured. So we are trying for that. Tyaktva deham punar janma naiti [Bg. 4.9]. That is Krishna consciousness, that "If you simply understand Me..." Janma karma cha divyam me yo janati tattvatah. Simply if you understand what is Krishna, why He comes, what is the purpose, then you become conqueror over death. That is our philosophy. Simply by understanding Krishna. That is our progress, how much we have understood Krishna. And when one understands fully Krishna-fully it is not possible; at least partially—he is conquering over death. Tyaktva deham punar janma naiti [Bg. 4.9]. That is real human life, how to conquer over death. Aihishtham yat tat punar-janma-jayaya. All the great sages and big, big kings, they left everything, went to the forest for austerity, penance. Why? To conquer over death. That is the mission. That... Everyone can do that, human life. And that is plainly explained in the Bhagavad-gita, "Simply try to understand Me and you conquer over death." Simple thing.

Tamal Krsna: But still we see, the Vaishnavas... They may argue like this, that... A karmi may say that "Still, how do we know that you have conquered over death, because you're still..."

Prabhupada: You cannot know. Because you are foolish, you cannot know. Just like the example is given: there is reel. You know? What is called? The children...

Paramahamsa: Swing?

Jayatirtha: Ferris wheel?

Prabhupada: No, no. In your country there is not, but in India there is a reel, reel-like. It rounds the thread for flying kite. What is called?

Krsna-kanti: Just a ball of string.

Tamal Krsna: Spool.

Paramahamsa: Kite line.

Prabhupada: Kite line? How it is?

Paramahamsa: How it is? It's a line for a kite, and it's wound upon on a stick, and to make the kite go higher you unleash...

Prabhupada: Yes. So it is going on. Sometimes the kite is going on, it is also rounding. And when the kite is coming down, that is also rounding. But you see one thing. But one thing is coming down; one is going up.

Tamal Krsna: So it's defective vision which...

Prabhupada: Yes. Just like a cat catching a rat in the mouth, his position, and catching the cub, kit, what is called?

Brahmananda: Kitten.

Prabhupada: You see that it is on the mouth, but one is feeling pleasure, and one is feeling finished. [laughter]

Yadubara: The materialists say that it's very morbid to talk so much about death. They say it is very depressing to speak so much about death.

Prabhupada: Because they are rascals, they cannot conquer. Everyone doesn't like death, but because they cannot conquer, they say like that, "Grapes are sour. Don't bother." After jumping, jumping, jumping, when the grapes were not available, "It is sour, no use."

Radhavallabha: We have also got a method of conquering death. We are planning now to freeze... When there is some illness that will cause death we will freeze the body, and when the cure for the disease is discovered we will wake it up.

Prabhupada: That is same as death. That freezing itself is death, but the rascal does not know that it is death.

Radhavallabha: But later on we will thaw the body out and cure it.

Prabhupada: "Later on," that is their post-dated cheque.

Paramahamsa: But then they say this, "In a hundred years, when we discover the cure, then we will bring you out and cure you."

Hrdayananda: Or eat him.

Prabhupada: So you will never discover the cure, and he will never come out. Now somebody was saying that this freezing, the body within, they decompose. The parts of the body are separate. That is... As we have... You take the frozen vegetable. It is tasteless. It is decomposed.

Paramahamsa: So actually it comes down to what Tamal Krsna asked. For example, the scientists may say, "Well, you say that we have a life after death, that we should conquer over death, but I cannot see it. I cannot see anyone who has come back."

Prabhupada: You cannot see even what is there after hundred years. What is the value of your eyes? Why you are proud of your eyes?

Paramahamsa: So you say it's based on faith.

Prabhupada: Not faith, it is fact. Just like if somebody says me, "The other side is Japan." I cannot see, so I may disbelieve. But that's a fact; Japan is there.

Tamal Krsna: But others have seen.

Prabhupada: Yes. Therefore you have to hear from a person who has seen.

tad viddhi pranipatena
pariprashnena sevaya
upadekshyanti tad jñanam
jñaninas tattva-darshinah
[Bg. 4.34]

Darshinah means one who has seen.

Radhavallabha: How do we know he has seen?

Paramahamsa: We have to have faith again then.

Prabhupada: What is that?

Paramahamsa: To begin to believe that you have seen, I must have faith in you.

Prabhupada: Yes, that faith. How do you believe there is Japan?

Tamal Krsna: Faith.

Prabhupada: Have you seen?

Tamal Krsna: No.

Prabhupada: Then why do you believe?

Tamal Krsna: Faith.

Hrdayananda: Every day on the news, every day on television a man comes on and he says what's happening all around the world, and everyone accepts. No one has ever seen any of those places.

Prabhupada: You have to believe.

Satsvarupa: Why is it that people are so disinclined to listen to our authority—that they all take the scientists' authority—if it's just one authority or another?

Prabhupada: Because they are nondevotee. That is the defect. More the nondevotee, more rascal mudha, dushkritina, mudha... They cannot. Dushkritino mudhah, na prapadyante. Mayayapahrita-jñana: "Knowledge has been taken away by maya." More you become atheist, the more you become blind. This is the point. We have given this maxim in our Back to Godhead [magazine]: "Where there is God there is no nescience." ...[We are] preaching, back to God. "If you want to know things are there, then come back to God. Don't go this side; come this side." This side means he will be drowned. There are two sides. If somebody unnecessarily goes this side, he is death, and this side, he is saved. So one who is going this side we are asking back to Godhead, "Come in this side." If one goes this side, he will find the downtown, so many nice buildings, parks and everything. And the boy who goes this side, he will die.

Radhavallabha: Srila Prabhupada, in Svarupa Damodara's book he gave the example that "Why does the red apple fall off the tree but not the green apple?" So the scientists say that when the apple gets ripe, certain acids rise in the stem and weaken it and it falls off the tree. There's no need for God or anything like that. It's automatic.

Prabhupada: No, no, there is no question of God, but with the gravitation why the green apple is not drawn downward?

Radhavallabha: Because the stem is very strong on a green apple, but on a red apple it is weak.

Prabhupada: That means it is conditional; gravitation works on condition. It is not final. Under certain condition it works. Therefore, then you have to accept condition. Under such and such condition it falls.

Radhavallabha: So these conditions are being set up by nature. There is no need for a controller.

Prabhupada: Whatever it may be, you cannot say that gravitation draws things downward. If gravitation... You will find cloud, thousands of tons of water. Why it is not down? Cloud, why it does not come down?

Radhavallabha: Because it is in vapor form. It has not condensed yet.

Prabhupada: Whatever it may be, but it is weighty.

Radhavallabha: It is waiting for the proper temperature.

Prabhupada: Then everything is conditional. Everything conditional.

Radhavallabha: So these conditions are part of nature.

Prabhupada: That is all right. But you cannot say, "This is the law: 'Everything will come down.'" These things are not coming down. So if there is... Not only this cloud, so many planets, hundreds and millions and millions of tons, how they are flying? How they are stayed on the sky? Everyone knows it.

Radhavallabha: Each planet has its own gravitational force.

Prabhupada: That may be. I say it is condition. Under certain condition... When Ramachandra throws stones for a bridge, the stones were floating. The stones did not go down.

Radhavallabha: Well, we can see in these inborn laws of nature all these things are going on. We don't see where there is need of some person behind it. These things are going on. Each planet has its own gravitational force; therefore they are balancing each other in the universe.

Prabhupada: You do that. You float one ball if you are so confident.

Radhavallabha: I cannot do it, but nature is doing it.

Prabhupada: Therefore you are rascal. You do not know who is doing. That is rascal. You are thinking everyone like you. That is nonsense. Atmavat manyate jagat: Everyone is thinking that 'Other party is like me.'" [break] ...so many conditions are fulfilled, then some action takes place, five. There are mainly five causes. [break] ...God throws a stone, big stone, it floats because He is God. When you throw a stone, it will drown. When God makes one big planet floating, that is possible. You cannot do it. Therefore you have to accept.

Radhavallabha: [break] ...On a small scale we have set up...

Prabhupada: Therefore you accept that you are small. You are not the great. God is great; you are small. So claim a small credit, don't claim as good as God. That is your foolishness. Because we are part and parcel of God, we have got capacity to do part and parcel, not the whole. So remain small, don't try to become big. Remain servant of God. Don't try to become God, that is foolishness. That is our philosophy. Trinad api sunichena taror api sahishnuna. Remain humble and meek. You will understand God.


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