Transmigration from Godhood to Doghood after Death


By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

They will never be God, but we see so many persons, who by the influence of the illusory energy, they think, “I am God. I shall become God by pressing my nose like this, doing this.” So this is going on. They will never be able. That is not possible. Otherwise, there is no meaning of God. If everyone can become God, then there is no meaning of God.

His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

But by influence of… Just like karmīs are saying “I shall become millionaire. I shall become trillionaire. I shall become head of the state. I shall become prime minister.” This struggle, this is another struggle: “I shall become God.” This is another struggle. But it is illusion. So Krishna gives them opportunity, some yogic success.

Just like in India there is a rascal. He makes like that, and there is immediately some gold. And people become after him: “Oh, he is God. He is God.” By producing a little gold, he becomes God. Another yogi, he gives immediately two rasagullā. So by producing two rasagullā, four annas’ worth, he becomes God. You see? This is illusion. These rascals, they do not know that, “What is this rasagullā, two rasagullā? I can purchase from the market for four annas. So he is becoming God by four annas?” But they have no sense. “Oh, he is God. He can produce rasagullā.” Rasagullā I can produce in our kitchen. But they are so rascal. “Oh, wonderful.” Continue reading

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WOMAN IS A STUMBLING BLOCK FOR SELF-REALIZATION


By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Great vows of austerity are undertaken by sages to achieve success in self-realization. Human life is meant for such tapasya, with the great vow of celibacy, or brahmacarya. In the rigid life of tapasya, there is no place for the association of women. And because human life is meant for tapasya, for self-realization, factual human civilization, as conceived by the system of sanātana-dharma or the school of four castes and four orders of life, prescribes rigid dissociation from woman in three stages of life. In the order of gradual cultural development, one’s life may be divided into four divisions: celibacy, household life, retirement, and renunciation.

The Lord appeared as a beautiful woman (Mohini) to captivate the asurās

During the first stage of life, up to twenty-five years of age, a man may be trained as a brahmacārī (celibate student) under the guidance of a bona fide spiritual master just to understand that woman is the real binding force in material existence. If one wants to get freedom from the material bondage of conditional life, he must get free from the attraction for the form of woman. Woman, or the fair sex, is the enchanting principle for the living entities, and the male form, especially in the human being, is meant for self-realization. The whole world is moving under the spell of womanly attraction, and as soon as a man becomes united with a woman, he at once becomes a victim of material bondage under a tight knot.

The desires for lording it over the material world, under the intoxication of a false sense of lordship, specifically begin just after the man’s unification with a woman. The desires for acquiring a house, possessing land, having children and becoming prominent in society, the affection for community and the place of birth, and the hankering for wealth, which are all like phantasmagoria or illusory dreams, encumber a human being, and he is thus impeded in his progress toward self-realization, the real aim of life.

The brahmacāri, or a boy from the age of five years, especially from the higher castes, namely from the scholarly parents (the brāhmanas), the administrative parents (the ksatriyas), or the mercantile or productive parents (the vaiśyas), is trained until twenty-five years of age under the care of a bona fide guru or teacher, and under strict observance of discipline he comes to understand the values of life along with taking specific training for a livelihood. The brahmacārī is then allowed to go home and enter householder life and get married to a suitable woman. But there are Continue reading

Little Drops of Prabhupada Nectar – 1


By Satsvarupa das Gosvami

Spreading Krishna consciousness in India often meant that Prabhupāda went with his disciples to honor prasādam at people’s homes. Thus, eating became a form of service to Krishna.

When Girirāja dāsa first arrived in India, he was used to strict training as a brahmacārī, and his personal habit was to be particularly reserved about accepting any sweets. On one occasion, however, Prabhupāda saw that his disciple’s austerity was causing discomfort to their host. Continue reading

DURGA HAS NO POWER TO AWARD LIBERATION – ONLY KRISHNA HAS THAT POWER


By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Durga is working under the direction of Krishna – Without surrendering to Krishna, no one can get out of the clutches of Durga (Bg7.14)

But those who have no information how this Durgā is there, they think that by worshiping, by pleasing goddess Durgā, they’ll be happy. No. Pleasing means you have to abide by the laws of the durga, material world. Otherwise, Durgā will take her trident and pierce on the chest of the asura. Durgā is controlling. The asura is also a living entity within this durga (fortress). So those who are asuras – those who are not cultivating Krishna consciousness, they are asuras – for them, Durgā’s trident is on the chest of the asura. You have seen that picture.

So you cannot get out of this durga simply by bribing, by satisfying. You have to satisfy Durgā in a different way. Continue reading

WAS KRISHNA BORN, AND IF SO, WHERE?


Answer By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Yes, Krishna was born, but you have to know how Krishna is born. That is your intelligence. Just like sun is born every morning. There is no sun now, but in the morning we will see sun and from the eastern side. So do you think that eastern side is the mother of sun? Because sun is born from the eastern side, you can take it for granted that eastern side is the mother of sun. Similarly, Krishna appears in similar way, but that does not mean that He is born. That is stated in the Fourth Chapter, Bhagavad-gita: janma karma me divyam yo jānāti tattvatah: “Anyone who understands in truth how I take My birth, how I work, how I am transcendental…” Simply by knowing these three things—how Krishna is born, and how does He work and what is His actual position—the result is tyaktvā deham punar janma naiti mām eti kaunteya: [Bg. 4.9] “My dear Arjuna, simply knowing these three things, one comes to Me after quitting this material body.” Punar janma naiti: “He never again comes back to…” That means, in other words, if you can understand the birth of Krishna, then you will stop your any more birth. You will be free from this birth and death. So try to understand how Krishna takes His birth. Continue reading

WHAT IS MAYAVADA PHILOSOPHY?


Answer by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Māyāvāda philosophy supports the impersonalist view that Nārāyaṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, has no form. One can imagine impersonal Brahman in any form—as Viṣṇu, Lord Śiva, Vivasvān, Gaṇeśa or Devī Durgā. According to the Māyāvāda philosophy, when one becomes a sannyāsī  he is to be considered a moving Nārāyaṇa. Māyāvāda philosophy holds that the real Nārāyaṇa does not move because, being impersonal, He has no legs. Thus according to Māyāvāda philosophy, whoever becomes a sannyāsī  declares himself Nārāyaṇa. Foolish people accept such ordinary human beings as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This is called vivarta-vāda.

Chaitanya Mahaprabhu preaches to impersonalist Mayavadi Sannyasis

In this regard, Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura comments that jaṅgama-nārāyaṇa means that the impersonal Brahman takes a shape and moves here and there in the form of a Māyāvādī sannyāsī . The Māyāvāda philosophy confirms this. Daṇḍa-grahaṇa-mātreṇa naro nārāyaṇo bhavet: “Simply by accepting the daṇḍa of the order of sannyāsa, one is immediately transformed into Nārāyaṇa.” Therefore Māyāvādī sannyāsīs address one another by saying oṁ namo nārāyaṇāya. In this way one Nārāyaṇa worships another Nārāyaṇa.

Actually an ordinary human being cannot become Nārāyaṇa. As the chief Māyāvādī sannyāsī, Śrī Śaṅkarācārya, says, nārāyaṇaḥ paro ’vyaktāt: “Nārāyaṇa is not a creation of this material world. Nārāyaṇa is above the material creation.” Due to their poor fund of knowledge, Māyāvādī sannyāsīs think that

Continue reading

“TRUST IN GOD” IS NOT SUFFICIENT


By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedānta Swami Prabhupāda

Meditation means to absorb your mind in the Supreme Personality of Godhead. That is meditation, real meditation. In all the standard scriptures and in yoga practice formula, the whole aim is to concentrate one’s mind in the Supreme Personality of Godhead. That is called samādhi, ecstasy. So that ecstasy is immediately brought by this chanting process. You begin chanting and hear for the few seconds or few minutes: you immediately come on the platform of ecstasy. Therefore, Caitanya Mahāprabhu recommended this process not only for India but for all the people of the world. He said that pr̥thivīte āche yata nagarādi grāma. Pr̥thivī means “on the face of the world”; ache, “when there is.” Nagar means “towns,” and grāma means “village” or “county.” So He said, “As many villages, towns, or counties, the human society, there are on the surface of the globe,” sarvatra pracāra haibe more nāma: “My name”- means Lord Caitanya’s name, because He introduced the simple method of chanting Hare Krishna – “will be celebrated.” That is His prediction.

Beatle George Harrisson chanting with the Hare Krishna devotees in London, circa 1968

So, we can see practically also that somehow or other, in your country this chanting Hare Krishna is introduced practically, since one year only, but it is getting popular. People are taking it very seriously. Even some places where I never visited, they are organizing centers. I have received information from Buffalo, from Atlantic City. One little boy, Terry, he is organizing. He has invited some of our brahmacārīs (celibate students) to go there. And I have received letter from Germany, from Holland. They also have begun chanting Hare Krishna. In England, the Britain, the Beatles, they are also chanting. So this is getting popular in the Western countries, and it will get, I am sure.

So this chanting process introduced by Lord Caitanya should be seriously taken up so that our aim of human life will be successful. We have forgotten. Na te viduh svārtha-gatim hi viṣṇum [SB 7.5.31]. We have forgotten… The modern civilization has… In your country I was reading a little history that in 1813 or some year the government introduced “We trust in God,” and that was declared by the secretary to be published on the coins or on the paper currency, and we see sometimes. Continue reading

STRUGGLE… A HEAVY STRUGGLE… A HARD STRUGGLE… THIS IS OUR ADVANCEMENT


By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Human life is meant for tapasyā (austerities). We know in our Indian history all big, big kings, they went to the forest for tapasyā. King Bharata, Bharata Mahārāja, under whose name this planet is called Bhāratavarṣa, left his kingdom, young wife, children, everything, at the age of twenty-four years, and went for tapasyā. So also the Pāndavas. Everyone. The last stage of life should be especially meant for tapasyā. Not that up to the point of death we shall remain addicted to this worldly life. No.

Srila Prabhupada with Dr. J. Stilson Judah

This life is meant for purifying our existence. That means stop this cycle of birth and death. Janma-mrtyu-jarā-vyādhi-duhkha-doṣānudarśanam [Bg. 13.9]. We should always keep in front. We may be puffed up as very much advanced in material comfort, but, at the same time, you should keep in front, janma-mrtyu-jarā-vyādhi (birth, old age, disease and death). Continue reading

Is ISKCON doing a sinful activity by degrading other Gods?


Answer by Niraj Bidawatka

First of all this question is itself erroneous. There are no “other Gods”. There is only one God. This is the verdict of all authorized scriptures starting from the Vedas, to the Bible and the Koran. ekam brahma dvitīyam nāsti: There is only one God, there cannot be two Gods. When there is no existence of other Gods, where does the question of degrading “other Gods” arise? The Bhagavad Gita is the only scripture, which reveals the identity of that one God. Please bear in mind that the God of the Hindus is not different from that of the Muslims or the Christians. Nor is the Bhagavad Gita a book of the Hindus. It is book of knowledge which is meant for humans, notwithstanding which religion they follow. It is a book of transcendental knowledge which informs us about the name and address of that all-powerful God, whom the Hindus call as Bhagavan, the Muslims call as Allah and the Jews calls as Jehovah. The Bhagavad Gita reveals that the name of God is Krishna and that He resides in the spiritual realm, which is transcendental to this material world, where we are staying. Upon reaching that spiritual realm, one is not subjected to repeated birth, death, old age, and disease.

Those, who are ignorant about the authentic teachings of the Bhagavad Gita, accept various other controllers of the cosmic manifestation as Continue reading

Who is above Brahma, Vishnu, Mahesh, Adi Parashakti, and Krishna?


Answer by Niraj Bidawatka

Krishna is the greatest. He is greater than Brahmā, Vishnu, Shankara and Adi-Parashakti. No one is greater than or equal to Krishna. This is confirmed by the Bhagavad Gita (7.7): mattah parataram nānyat kincid asti dhananjaya: There is no truth greater than Krishna.

The proponents of the impersonal māyāvāda philosophy claim that the formless Brahman is superior than the personal gods and that the Bhagavad Gita was spoken by the formless Brahman within Krishna. But this is a false theory and this sort of fallacious reasoning is rejected by Krishna Himself. He states in the Bhagavad Gita (14.27) that “I am the basis of the impersonal Brahman (brahmaṇo hi pratiṣṭhāham).” Therefore the māyāvāda, or advaita-vāda philosophy, which claims that the impersonal and formless Brahman is superior to Krishna, is out-rightly rejected by the Bhagavad Gita in this verse.

Krishna further confirms in the Bhagavad Gita (10.2) that “I am the origin of all the devatās (aham ādir hi devānām).” This is conclusive proof that Krishna is the origin of all the devatās, including Brahmā, Vishnu and Shiva.

Now one may argue that, “This is the claim of Krishna Himself. How can I believe His claim. Anybody can claim that, ‘I am God’ but how do I accept that Krishna is Supreme.”

The answer is given by Arjuna in Bhagavad Gita (10.12–13) wherein Continue reading