Interview with Mr. Koshi (Asst.
Editor of The Current Weekly)
April 5, 1977,
Tamala Krsna: Srila Prabhupada,
this is Mr. B. T. Koshi. He is the assistant editor of The Current, which is a
weekly news magazine.
Tamala Krsna: You want to set this
tape recorder up? [break]
Prabhupada: He can
Mr. Koshi: I have come from the
material world. It is totally different from what the situation is outside.
You have been in the news at the festival which was held at Bombay. I decided
to try and see you. There's been a lot of curiosity as to what the movement is
about. Not only here, but abroad. A lot of controversy. I would like to know
how this movement started, what gave you the idea. What is the background? And
why it was called the Krsna consciousness movement? Is it a return to
something very fundamental?
Prabhupada: This movement is
started to give something to the whole human society about the real culture.
And that is India's prerogative. India can give it. The whole world is in
darkness of ignorance. So India was expected after independence to give the
real knowledge. But instead of giving that real knowledge, they became
victimized by their glimmer of material civilization. So I wanted that such a
magnificent gift from the side of India, it shall remain uncontributed to the
world, let me try. This is the intention(?). This culture is based on
Bhagavad-gita, Krsna. Therefore it is named Krsna consciousness. In India
practically every home, every person, every leader, they read Bhagavad-gita.
But unfortunately they do not understand the human life. Because in the
beginning of the Bhagavad-gita we find Krsna says,
dehino 'smin yatha dehe kaumaram
yauvanam jara tatha dehantara-praptir dhiras tatra na muhyati [Bg.
asocyan anvasocas tvam
prajna-vadams ca bhasase gatasun agatasums ca nanusocanti panditah [Bg.
This is beginning. When Krsna began
to instruct, began instructing Arjuna about Bhagavad-gita, the first
chastisement was given to Arjuna that "You are talking like a pandita, but you
are a rascal."
Mr. Koshi: But you are
Prabhupada: "But you are a rascal.
Because you are giving stress on the body." Asocyan anvasocas tvam [Bg. 2.11].
The body is a lump of matter. It is not the subject matter for discussing or
lamenting. It is a lump of matter. Now this (tapping), what is
Mr. Koshi: Machine. Tape
Prabhupada: This machine, so long
it is working, it is valuable. If it does not work, what is the value? Throw
it out. Similarly, the machine is not important, but so long it is working, it
is important. So we must know what is that working principle. That is
knowledge. So generally, people, they are embarrassed with the machine, this
body. But they do not know what the power in the machine. Am I right or
Mr. Koshi: Hmm.
Prabhupada: This is a wrong type of
civilization, a civilization of ignorance. Animal civilization. Just like
animals: a cat, a dog, the cow, he does not know what is the working principle
in the body. So he is jumping and running as a dog, as a cat, and he appears
to be very busy. Similarly, the modern civilization, they are jumping and
running like cats and dogs, but does not know what is the principle which is
helping him to jump and run. That is the beginning of Bhagavad-gita. Asmin
dehe dehinah. The active principle is there within this body. So who knows it?
Ask big, big leaders, big, big scholars of Bhagavad-gita. They are concerned
with this body. Nobody is interested with the active principle within the
body. So what do they know about Bhagavad-gita? The basic principle is wrong.
Krsna is speaking on the subject matter within the body, the active principle.
Dehino 'smin yatha dehe [Bg. 2.13]. The difference. Asmin dehe. The dehi, the
owner of the body, is there. Who knows it? Tell me. This is the beginning of
Bhagavad-gita lesson. But one does not know that what is the important thing
in this body: not this machine, but the power that is driving the machine. So
what is this? And still, they are proud of becoming scholar on Bhagavad-gita,
knower of Bhagavad-gita and so on, so on. This is going on. This
misconception. They are themselves in ignorance, and they are keeping their
followers in ignorance. Therefore no benefit has been derived from this
culture of Bhagavad-gita. We wanted to give it to the world. This is the
Mr. Koshi: This is what you have
tried to do. Why is it necessary to concentrate on this name
Prabhupada: First of all, you
understand what is the importance of this movement. Then you will understand
Krsna. First of all, you have to know what is the important things are there.
One thing is this bodily machine and the other thing is the power within the
Mr. Koshi: The driving
Prabhupada: But you do not know
what is the power. You are simply embarrassed with the machine. So just try to
understand your position in ignorance. As soon as the power within machine is
gone, it is useless. Everything is thrown away, a lump of matter. So who is
Mr. Koshi: (Hindi) Srila
Prabhupada, Bhaktivedanta Prabhupada. (introduces Indian man to Srila
Prabhupada: Betiye, sit
Indian (1): No, he has come to pay
respect to you, sir.
Prabhupada: That's all right. But
wait. Let him come in. The point is that if you keep yourself in ignorance,
then what is the use of advancing further? If your basic principle is
calculated wrong, then whatever you construct from that wrong background,
everything is wrong. One mistake done in the beginning, then plus minus, plus
minus, ultimately it is wrong. So our Krsna consciousness means that unless
you take seriously what Krsna says, you are simply jumping like animals.
That's all. This is Krsna consciousness. First of all you understand your
position, what Krsna says. Then go ahead. You do not understand the basic
principle what Krsna says, and you are declaring yourself, "I am reading
Bhagavad-gita and Bhagavad-gita is my life," and so on, and so
Mr. Koshi: Would you say that this
is a return to this Bhagavad-gita?
Prabhupada: Yes. This culture is
purely Bhagavad-gita. Therefore we have given the name "Krsna consciousness."
What Krsna said, take it.
Mr. Koshi: Is it somewhat similar
to the... [break]
Prabhupada: We are preaching what
Krsna says. We do not mind what other says. There may be similarities, there
may not be similarities. It doesn't matter. But we are concerned with the
instruction that Krsna says. I haven't got to tally what Krsna says and what
you say. I have no business to do that. We are simply concerned what Krsna
says. Now if you like, you can take it. If you don't like, you take your own
way. But we are speaking only on Krsna. So our lamentable subject matter...,
subject is that India has got so great, exalted knowledge of Bhagavad-gita,
and the government has got cultural department, and all leaders, at least they
are supposed to give support to Bhagavad-gita. Why they are not taking
seriously and give it to the...? And they are taking it seriously. My single
attempt to preach the teachings of Bhagavad-gita as it is, they are accepting
it all over the world. Why not give it an organized way? All the Indian
leaders, they are simply imitating, jumping like the Western
Mr. Koshi: But there will be the
accusation that being a secular state...
Prabhupada: Secular, pecular, this
is... Knowledge is knowledge.
Mr. Koshi: Whether it is religious
Prabhupada: We cannot compromise.
Knowledge is knowledge. It cannot be changed because there is secular, pecular
and (indistinct). It cannot be changed. Knowledge is knowledge. Just like this
asmin dehe dehino 'smin. What is secular knowledge? It is knowledge for
everyone. Within this body the active principle is there. And the secular
knowledge says, "No, no, the active principle is outside." We have to accept
it? Knowledge is knowledge. Two plus two is equal to everyone, everywhere. It
Mr. Koshi: But those who do not
subscribe to this process...
Prabhupada: Who do not subscribe,
if they say "five," shall we have to take it?
Mr. Koshi: No, I agree. I
Prabhupada: Then why...? What is
this? This is nonsense. Two plus two equal to four. It will be accepted by
everyone. Every scientist, every mathematician. And if by vote, secular state,
"It is five" or "It is six," shall we have to accept it? We have to accept
knowledge as it is. Why you say secular or not secular?
Mr. Koshi: No, I think it is a
question of accepting a concept of...
Prabhupada: No concept. It is
science. It is not... Try to understand this. "Two plus two" is science. It is
Mr. Koshi: I know that. But let us
look at it this way. You are saying that Krsna is important, but somebody else
says that somebody else is important, so that is...
Prabhupada: If Krsna is important,
why shall He not be taken? If somebody says...
Mr. Koshi: If somebody else says
that Jack is important...
Prabhupada: Somebody. What is that
somebody? Is he a scientist? Is he a philosopher? Is he advanced? Any
loafer-class man can say anything.
Mr. Koshi: There are scholars from
other religions also.
Prabhupada: Then you do not
understand the standpoint. We have to understand the active principle of life.
So why other scholars will disagree? Then he is not a scholar. Let us come to
the scientific point of view. We have to understand what is the active
principle within this machine. It is equally important to all scholars. That
we have to preach. They may say that "Your Krsna; our this." No. That
knowledge Krsna is giving for everyone. And it is accepted by everyone. They
are Christians. How they are accepting? I am not bribing them.
Mr. Koshi: They are all
Prabhupada: Yes. Everyone. Any
scientific man, any advanced in education...
Mr. Koshi: Have you put any
Prabhupada: No conditions. You try
to understand. Within this body the active principle is there. Where is
condition? You try to understand if you have knowledge.
Mr. Koshi: But a renunciation of
Prabhupada: Again, why you are
coming to renunciation? First of all come to the knowledge. First of all
accept that within this body there is the active principle. Then whether it is
required renunciation, no renunciation, that we shall discuss later on. First
of all, we have to understand, as Krsna says in the very beginning, that asmin
dehe dehi. "Within this body, there is the owner of the body." First of all
try to understand. He is speaking on that subject matter, dehi, not on the
deha. People should understand first of all this science. Then talk of other
things. When we say "Two plus two equal to four," no scholar will deny it.
"Yes, it is four." Nobody, no rascal will say, "No, it is five" or "three."
Nobody will disagree, if it is science, if it is mathematics. Similarly, Krsna
says within this body, the owner of the body. Who will deny it? Let them
accept it. Then we shall discuss what is that owner, what is the nature of
that owner. First of all let them accept it. They are accepting the machine as
everything. Do you agree or not?
Mr. Koshi: Yeah, but who is the
owner of the body?
Prabhupada: Ah. Yes. Machine, if
you take the importance of the machine and not the machine driver, then what
is your knowledge? If a dog is thinking, "I am a bulldog, gow gow gow," and if
a man is thinking "I am Indian, gow gow," what is the difference? He is
embarrassed with the machine body, and he is also embarrassed with the machine
body. The dog is jumping, monkey is jumping with a machine body, and if we
also imitate jumping like the dog and the monkey, so what is the difference?
The human being is to understand that "I am not this body." That is the first
knowledge. That is the first principle.
brahma-bhutah prasannatma na socati
na kanksati samah sarvesu bhutesu mad-bhaktim labhate param [Bg.
That is brahma-jnana. Athato brahma
jijnasa. So these things are here in India. Instead of distributing,
understanding these things, we are jumping like cats and dogs, like the
Western civilization. Anthill and four-wheel dog race. These big, big
buildings, they are like anthill. You know anthill? The ant also can make a
big stack of earth. Does it mean it is civilization to compete with the ant?
Or run with the dog? Sometimes your car is driving, and dog is running, it is
a competition and the dog running. Is that civilization? Without
understanding, the whole thing is going on, running on like that. Why India
should imitate? India has got so much great, exalted knowledge given by Krsna.
India should learn it and teach it to the whole world. That is India's
business. Paropakara. And that is being done in Krsna consciousness. Very
important movement, very scientific movement. So do not neglect it. Come and
join, learn it and give it to the whole world. This is the perfect knowledge,
paropakara. Not to imitate there and jump like monkey and cats and dogs. This
is not good.
Mr. Koshi: All sorts of messages
are going out.
Prabhupada: All sorts may go, but
you must know the real message, that within this machine -- the owner of the
machine, the driver of the machine. All sorts of... There are three thousand
parts in a motorcar. You have all sorts of knowledge about the parts of the
car, and you do not know who is driving, then what is this knowledge? Every
paper, every learned man, every..., every should take it seriously and
implement it. It is not meant for everyone. Still, there must be an
institution to teach this, I mean, the highest standard of knowledge to the
human being. Why they should simply jump like cats and dogs? This is our
mission. So don't try to imitate cats and dogs, but be human being. Understand
what is your position and cultivate that knowledge. That is nature's way. The
evolutionary process, after 8,400,000 species of life, it is stated in the
Bhagavad-gita that if you don't understand this opportunity, then nivartante
mrtyu-samsara-vartmani [Bg. 9.3]. (aside:) Find out this verse. Aprapya mam.
Asraddadhanah purusa dharmasyasya parantapa. "Those who are not interested in
the teachings of the Bhagavad-gita, the result will be he will not understand
Me, God, and he will again return to the cycle of birth and death." That's
Mr. Koshi: But how many people have
the capability? As you say, they are jumping up and down.
Prabhupada: Yes. So it is not
for... You see, when we talk of diamond, it does not mean that everyone will
be able to purchase it. But there must be the diamond. Because there is no
customer, very many customer, diamond should be abolished?
Mr. Koshi: No.
Prabhupada: That is not possible.
Similarly, how many men will understand or not understand, that is not the
consideration. But we have got in India such exalted knowledge. We must
cultivate and distribute as far as possible. It is our duty. That is Caitanya
Mahaprabhu's mission. Bharata-bhumite manusya-janma haila yara [Cc. Adi 9.41].
You understand Bengali?
Mr. Koshi: No.
Prabhupada: "Anyone who has taken
birth as human being in India," janma sarthaka kari' kara para-upakara, "first
of all make your life successful by understanding what is life, and then
distribute." This is Caitanya Mahaprabhu. You have got this asset. You are
Mr. Koshi: You started this ten
years ago. But why is it that when you were recognized, you were recognized by
others and not in this country?
Prabhupada: Huh? Because they are
so poor that they cannot purchase diamond. But diamond must be there. They are
so poor-hearted, their education has been so poorly given that they cannot
Mr. Koshi: Poorly
Prabhupada: Yes. That "You are this
body. Jump like cats and dogs," that's all. What is nationalism? This is, that
"You are this body. Jump like cats and dogs." A group, as a group of crows
gather together, craw-craw-craw-craw. That has been taught. Make group and
Mr. Koshi: Something is
Prabhupada: Yes. You don't find
this word "nationalism" in the Bhagavad-gita. You don't find it. Can you find
out this word? These are all borrowed words.
Mr. Koshi: And what is your
Prabhupada: Huh? What is that? We
are preaching internationalism: everyone welcome. Come to Krsna consciousness.
That is being done. Real United Nation. Here is Christian, here is Jew, here
is African, here is Muhammadan -- everything. Worldwide. That is real United
Nation. They have no conception. If they would thought that "I am American,"
then why he is after a poor Indian like me? Indians are known outside India as
poverty-stricken, and that's a fact.
Mr. Koshi: As...?
Mr. Koshi: Poverty-stricken.
Prabhupada: Yes. And that's a fact.
So why he should come to a person who is born of poverty-stricken nation? But
actually we are not poverty-stricken. If we cultivate our own standard of
knowledge, Bhagavad-gita, then we are the richest, and we can give to the
whole world the gift. That should be wanted. And they will welcome. India will
be glorified if they accept. Prestige. This is our mission. I am trying for
Mr. Koshi: How are you
Prabhupada: India is not
poverty-stricken. India can give him something which will glorify your life.
That is my answer. I do not say India is poverty-stricken. I say India is the
richest. Believe it; take it. So we have no such concern as "India" or
"America." No. We are concerned with the living entities. We have no such
stagnant idea. Stagnation. We have no such thing. Caitanya Mahaprabhu:
bharata-bhumite haila manusya-janma. That bharata-bhumite manusya, manusya
means man. He is different from others. Therefore he should know what is his
position, make his life successful and distribute the knowledge. But they are
ignorant. This should be India's position -- teacher of the whole world. Not
Mr. Koshi: This support that you
wanted... People have not taken sufficient interest in this
Prabhupada: Because they have been
taught like that.
Mr. Koshi: Taught to receive, not
Prabhupada: Yes. They have been
taught to become group of dogs and crows. That's all. These political
Mr. Koshi: You are against
Prabhupada: No, we are not against,
neither for. But these things will go on. This is going on since the creation,
but that will not help.
Mr. Koshi: But they are in charge
Prabhupada: There have been. In
other countries there has been Napoleon, there has been Hitler, there has been
Mussolini, there has been Churchill. In India also we had many leaders like
Gandhi and others. So what contribution they made? People are
Mr. Koshi: But you yourself were
involved in some of the movements.
Prabhupada: Yes. It is not
movement; it is knowledge. It is not artificial movement. It is knowledge,
real knowledge, that you are not this body, you are not this machine. It is
knowledge. It is meant for everyone. But you take an artificial movement. It
is not. It is knowledge. And it is your duty to give knowledge to the people.
If you have got any knowledge... All scientists do like that. It is not
movement. When a scientist goes all over the world, gives about his discovery,
it is not movement. It is scientific knowledge. Movement is you create
something and make your followers. That is movement. It is not like that. It
is scientific knowledge that you are not this body. Dehino 'smin yatha. That
is the beginning of Bhagavad-gita. Those who are fortunate, they will accept
it. Manusyanam sahasresu kascid yatati siddhaye, yatatam api siddhanam [Bg.
7.3 ]. (aside:) Find out this verse. Everything is there in the Bhagavad-gita,
but we are neglecting. Although we are getting photograph with Bhagavad-gita.
This is going on. Actually understand Bhagavad-gita and distribute the
knowledge, that is our business.
Mr. Koshi: But are there
anything... Isn't there something more fundamental than that?
Prabhupada: There are many things,
and they are all subordinate. First of all you understand the body and the
owner of the body. In the body there are so many things. Similarly, the owner
of deha, greater number of things to know. First of all try to understand the
beginning, that you are not this body. That is the fundamental understanding.
Then you understand what is the composition of the body and what is the
composition of the... The first knowledge is lacking, mistaken, that "I am
this body." Yasyatma-buddhih kunape tri-dhatuke [SB 10.84.13]. They are
accepting this body as atma. Apasyatam atma-tattvam [SB 2.1.2]. We have
written so many books, eighty-four books. And they are reading. In the Western
world they are taking it.
Mr. Koshi: Yes, I was
Prabhupada: Russia also they are
taking it. So gradually they will take. They are intelligent. And we are
neglecting. This is our misfortune. And misled we are.
Mr. Koshi: By who?
Prabhupada: We are neglecting. By
the leaders. They do not know what is Bhagavad-gita, and they are professing
as "I am scholar in the Bhagavad-gita." They do not know what is distinction
between the body and the owner of the body. The first lesson of Bhagavad-gita
they do not know. Then what they will understand Bhagavad-gita? This is the
Mr. Koshi: What is the
Prabhupada: Solution? You learn
Mr. Koshi: But if they don't want
to do it?
Prabhupada: They don't want to...
Then let them, they will go to hell. What can be done? If you want to cut your
own throat, you can do it. Who can save you? But our duty is "Don't make
suicide." We must be all sane and (indistinct). But if you commit suicide,
that is your business. What can I do? We shall go on. This is suicidal
condition, to live like cats and dogs and jump like monkeys. Losing the
opportunity of human being, where you can understand? Athato brahma jijnasa.
This is Vedanta-sutra. They are neglecting it. They are neglecting it. You
will go to hell. Krsna says mam aprapya. Everything is there.
asraddadhanah purusa dharmasyasya
parantapa aprapya mam nivartante mrtyu-samsara-vartmani [Bg. 9.3]
They do not know what is the risk
of mrtyu-samsara-vartmani. After all, you have to die. After death, if you
become a tree in front of my house, who can check it? It is law of nature. You
cannot check it. Then what will be your position? Stand up for thousands of
years in one place. So risky. They do not understand. They do not discuss
these things in the Bhagavad-gita, and still they are scholars of
Bhagavad-gita. They write comment on the Bhagavad-gita, whimsically. This is
going on. There are so many things to be learned from Bhagavad-gita. They do
not understand. And they are writing comment on Bhagavad-gita, misleading
others. It is clear. Dharma-ksetre kuru-ksetre samaveta [Bg. 1.1], it is
clear. They will comment; they will make some bogus meaning.
Prabhupada: Yes. Spoil their own
life and spoil others'. This is going on. The meaning is clear, but these
rascals are thinking that "Meaning is not clear. Krsna left for me to clear
the meaning." (laughter) That's all. Such a rascals, they are touching
Bhagavad-gita. As if Krsna left for him to clear the meaning. These rubbish
things we want to stop. Of course, it is not possible. Many others are. But we
are trying little, that's all. But we cannot make any compromise. Therefore
Krsna consciousness. What Krsna says, we have to accept. That is a fact. They
are completely under the grip of material nature. Prakrteh kriyamanani gunaih
karmani [Bg. 3.27 ]. You are declaring independence. Ahankara-vimudhatma
kartaham iti manyate [Bg. 3.27]. These things are going on. False, ahankara,
egotism. Nature in one slap -- crack! Indira Gandhi is so powerful -- one
slap, "Get out." What can you do? One slap is sufficient. (claps hands
sharply) They do not understand. Jumping, that's all. They do not know they
are completely under the control of prakrti, and prakrti is under the control
of Krsna. Mayadhyaksena prakrtih suyate sa-caracaram [Bg. 9.10]. These things
are going on. They do not discuss this. Still, they are scholar in
Bhagavad-gita. Simply picking up some words, they become scholar. Is that
scholarship? They do not read even the whole Bhagavad-gita, neither they
understand. This is going on.
Mr. Koshi: Is interpretation
necessary or not?
Mr. Koshi: Some passages, they
might not be able to understand it.
Everyone knows this is a tape recorder. What is interpretation?
Mr. Koshi: No, for...
Prabhupada: Everyone knows that
this is a tape recorder. So what is the interpretation? Interpretation
required when you do not understand.
Mr. Koshi: Is it that simple and
clear for everybody?
Prabhupada: No, that is the way of
interpretation. Amongst the learned circle, interpretation required when the
things are not clear. If the things are clear, why nonsense interpretation?
There is no need of interpretation. Dharma-ksetre kuru-ksetre [Bg. 1.1].
Kuruksetra is still there, and people go there for pilgrimage. And in the
Vedas it is stated kuru-ksetre dharman acaret: "Go to Kuruksetra and perform
ritualistic ceremonies." Where is the difficulty? Why should I interpret,
"Kuruksetra means this; dharma-ksetre means this, that"? Why? To mislead
others and mislead himself. This is not required. But they are doing it. That
is misleading. If you can interpret Bhagavad-gita by your own interpretation,
then what is the authority of Bhagavad-gita? Everyone can do like that.
Everyone can say, "It is my interpretation." Then where is the authority of
Bhagavad-gita? These things should be stopped. Real Bhagavad-gita should be
studied. People should make life Bhagavad-gita and preach all over the world.
This is our movement.
Mr. Koshi: Can I change the subject
Mr. Koshi: I mean something
different, about the...
Prabhupada: Oh, yes.
Mr. Koshi: You all have list, some
conditions in this...
Prabhupada: No condition. Study
Bhagavad-gita. Make your life...
Mr. Koshi: No, for example, the
saffron robe, the beads...
Prabhupada: That is stated in the
Mr. Koshi: And the shaving of the
head with the little...
Prabhupada: Oh, yes. Varnasrama.
Varnasrama. This is asrama. He is sannyasi, he must take to it.
Mr. Koshi: And the avoidance
Prabhupada: Catur-varnyam maya
srstam guna-karma-vibhagasah [Bg. 4.13]. So just like if you take..., become a
police officer, you must take the dress.
Mr. Koshi: Uniform.
Mr. Koshi: No, but say the
avoidance of tea and coffee and all that.
Mr. Koshi: Is something wrong with
Prabhupada: Yes. It is sinful,
Mr. Koshi: By itself it is not
Prabhupada: Itself is bad,
Mr. Koshi: It's a neutral thing,
Prabhupada: You say. But sastra
says striya, suna, pana, dyuta [SB 1.17.38] , four kinds of sinful activities.
Illicit sex; pana, intoxication. Chai -- pana, paniya, so it is intoxication.
Therefore it is sinful.
Mr. Koshi: And what is the
Prabhupada: Striya, suna and
jiva-himsa, unnecessarily killing animals.
Mr. Koshi: And therefore
vegetarianism. Is that why vegetarianism is...?
Prabhupada: First of all, you try
to understand the principles. These are the four principles of sinful life. So
you should avoid. Unless... Yesam anta gatam papam. That is the... Unless you
are free from sinful activities, you cannot understand Krsna. Yesam anta gatam
papam jananam punya-karmanam, te dvandva-moha-nirmukta [Bg.
Mr. Koshi: What is the meaning of
Prabhupada: Anyone who is
completely free from sinful activities, he can understand Krsna. If you are
engaged in sinful activities, how you will understand Krsna? Therefore these
things are forbidden: "Don't do this," to understand Krsna.
manusyanam sahasresu kascid yatati
siddhaye yatatam api siddhanam kascin mam vetti tattvatah [Bg.
Mr. Koshi: (laughing) I don't
Prabhupada: You don't understand;
therefore I say you become a student. Understand it. That is our institution.
If you don't want to understand, that is another thing.
Mr. Koshi: No. I try to understand,
but I drink coffee and tea. I cannot...
Prabhupada: Because you have not
been taught by proper teacher.
Mr. Koshi: That I
Prabhupada: That is not your fault.
Tad-vijnanartham sa gurum eva abhigacchet [MU tad-vijnanartham sa gurum
evabhigacchet samit-panih srotriyam brahma-nistham
"To understand these things
properly, one must humbly approach, with firewood in hand, a spiritual master
who is learned in the Vedas and firmly devoted to the Absolute Truth."
[Mundaka Upanisad 1.2.12]
1.2.12]. This is Vedic injunction.
So therefore our brahmacari system. First of all one becomes brahmacari.
Brahmacari guru-kule vasan danto guror hitam [SB 7.12.1]. These things are
there. Everything is there, and we don't take advantage of this knowledge. We
are after becoming dogs, that's all.
Mr. Koshi: But there are several
millions like me.
Prabhupada: That does not mean...
Several zeros does not mean one. Millions of zeros does not mean one. Zero is
zero. If several millions of zeros, adding, you cannot make one. That is not
possible. One is required. And if you want after zero, you go on. But if you
are after one, mam ekam saranam vraja, then you are perfect. Sarva-dharman
parityajya [Bg. 18.66]. Don't after these zeros. Mam ekam saranam vraja. This
is the... If you are after zeros, that is your business. Krsna says, "Come
after one." Then you are advanced.
Mr. Koshi: So you say one, you mean
Prabhupada: "One" means
Mr. Koshi: Yes, I know. But what
about the rest in the pantheon? There are hundreds in the...
Prabhupada: Why you are concerned?
If you become perfect by one, why you're after so many? Aham tvam
sarva-papebhyo moksayisyami ma sucah [Bg. 18.66]. So we have taken that one,
that's all -- Krsna. We are not after zeros. Ask these boys to come after
zeros and bribe them millions of dollars. They will refuse: "No, we're after
one, Krsna." They have been trained up. Yasmin vijnate sarvam idam vijnatam
bhavati [Mundaka Upanisad 1.1.3]. We have written these big, big books,
eighty-four books, only on Krsna. Now it is recognized Hare Krsna movement is
genuine, in New York high court.
Mr. Koshi: Yes, I saw the review in
the Times of India also. But there was a lot of controversy there. It was
called brainwashing and all that.
Prabhupada: There are so many
accusations. Now the court has acknowledged, "It is genuine."
Mr. Koshi: But you don't require
the recognition of any court, do you?
Prabhupada: You require. (laughter)
I don't require. You require.
Mr. Koshi: Until then, there is a
Prabhupada: Yes. Because you are
after the court, after the judges. We are not after anyone. We are after one:
Krsna. That's all. For you, it is confirmed. We know what our duty is. For the
last twelve years there were so many impediments. It did not stop us. There
was so much harassment.
Mr. Koshi: Where? Here, in this
Prabhupada: Not here,
Mr. Koshi: In the United
Prabhupada: Oh, yes. They were
kidnapped, they were taken by force, and so on, so on. So many
Mr. Koshi: No, I think the
opposition comes because of...
Prabhupada: Opposition comes means
there was some strength of this movement. Therefore there was
Mr. Koshi: No, I think the
complaint was of families and things like that...
Prabhupada: Whatever it may be,
they felt the strength. In Bengali it is called capale babale.(?)
Mr. Koshi: What is the meaning of
Prabhupada: Meaning means when
there is some weight, is a (indistinct). So now they are feeling the weight of
this Hare Krsna movement.
Mr. Koshi: They were afraid of
Prabhupada: Oh, yes.
Mr. Koshi: Why?
Prabhupada: Because the young men
are taking it.
Mr. Koshi: But how does
Prabhupada: It is not such called
yoga system, (imitates snoring) meditation. It is not like that. Young men,
they are taking it. They are preaching; they have sacrificed their life. So
they are intelligent persons. They can understand that we should not die. It
is not old man's recreation.
Mr. Koshi: No, but you are
responsible for it.
Prabhupada: I am not... Krsna is
responsible. I am just distributing. My duty is to distribute. That's
Mr. Koshi: Would you call yourself
Prabhupada: Yes, I am
Mr. Koshi: Because there are others
who call themselves Bhagavan.
Prabhupada: Let them
Mr. Koshi: Are you a
Prabhupada: Guru is not Bhagavan.
Guru is the servant of Bhagavan.
Mr. Koshi: Servant of Bhagavan. Are
you happy with the way the movement has really spread? The...
Prabhupada: Why not? Because I am
giving the standard movement. I am not manufacturing anything. I am giving
what is said by Krsna. I am just distributing that. Why shall I not be happy?
I am not manufacturing anything. That is not my business.
Mr. Koshi: How are others
Prabhupada: Yes, they are
manufacturing. They have to do artificially. My things are ready; I have
simply distributed. So why shall I not be happy? If you do something
artificially, you have to manufacture. I am not doing that. My things are
Mr. Koshi: How is your health
Prabhupada: Not good. Health or no
health, it is the outward machine. That doesn't matter. But if it is a good
machine then it helps, that's all. Otherwise, machine good or bad, it doesn't
matter to machine driver.
Mr. Koshi: What happens when the
Prabhupada: It changes. Tatha
dehantara-praptih [Bg. 2.13].
Mr. Koshi: What is the meaning of
Prabhupada: If your machine is
stopped, you take another machine. That's all. You go on hearing. Not that
your work will stop. You give up this machine. Take another machine. Actually
you do that. Why shall I be overwhelmed, "Oh, machine is gone, machine is
gone"? Therefore Krsna says, asocyan anvasocas tvam [Bg. 2.11]: "You are
lamenting for the machine, nonsense. This is not pandita's business."
Nanusocanti panditah. Machine is gone, take another one, that's all. Go
Mr. Koshi: What is your day like,
typical day? In the morning, what time do you get up? Your day, how do you
spend the day?
Prabhupada: How can I say? I have
got so many engagements.
Mr. Koshi: But do you receive
visitors most of the time, or do you do lot of reading?
Prabhupada: No, no. I remain busy.
Sometimes receiving important visitors. Just like you are editor. If you
understand, you can, if you like, there will be so many gains, beneficial.
Mr. Koshi: Do you take interest in
the political happenings?
Prabhupada: That will go
Mr. Koshi: No, but do you take
Prabhupada: Indira Gandhi goes,
another Gandhi comes, another Gandhi goes, another comes. That is the history,
whole history of the world. There is nothing new. Punah punas
carvita-carvananam [SB 7.5.30], chewing the chewed. Politics means chewing the
chewed, that's all.
Mr. Koshi: Chewing
Prabhupada: Chewing the something,
just like sugar cane. You have chewed it, taken all the juice, you have thrown
it away. Another man is chewing it. (laughter) It is like that. Indira Gandhi
also promised so many things, and she is now out, and somebody is speaking
Mr. Koshi: Morarji
Prabhupada: Anyone. And in some day
he will not be there, somebody will come. That is the history of the whole
world. But that will not benefit the human society, politics. It is useless.
This knowledge will help make the solution. Dehino 'smin yatha dehe [Bg.
2.13]. We are suffering in this material condition, and He is delivering from
this. That is real upakara. That's the reputation of history,
Mr. Koshi: But it has been going on
for quite some time.
Prabhupada: It is going on, but
time immemorial. But that is not the solution.
Mr. Koshi: They have seen to have
more control over people than others. When a person is empowered, his actions
can affect so many people.
Prabhupada: So what kind of
Mr. Koshi: (laughs) Cats and
Prabhupada: That's all.
Sva-vid-varaha. They have been described in the Bhagavata as dogs, camels,
asses and hogs. Sva-vid-varaha-ustra-kharaih samstutah purusah pasuh [SB
2.3.19]. [break] The leader of hogs, dogs, camels and asses. Our civilization
is brahminical, brahmana. That is wanted.
Mr. Koshi: Is that good or
Prabhupada: That is good. Unless
you become brahmana, real brahmana, sama, dama, titiksa, how you will
understand? We are not for the hogs, dogs, cats. Therefore it is sometimes
said that without becoming brahmana, nobody should try to understand Vedas.
What he will understand? Param satyam dhimahi. Dhimahi. This word is used
because it is meant for the brahmanas. Om bhur bhuvah svah..., dhimahi.
Dhimahi is gayatri-mantra. It is chanted by the brahmanas. That word is used
Tamala Krsna: Srila Prabhupada, I
wanted to suggest that if he has some further questions, we could try to
answer them, and then if there is still some remaining
Prabhupada: No. He has no answer on
this spiritual matter. He'll ask me some political... We have no function with
Mr. Koshi: No, there was a few
other questions regarding the Society.
Prabhupada: The fundamental
principle is that we are teaching about the owner of the body.
Mr. Koshi: Yeah, but what we are in
the outside world... I am not in the Society. What I see outside is totally...
You see, when I see a group of young people like these boys here dancing on
the street, it is something jarring to my eyes. I am not used to it. What is
the necessity for the chant and the...
Prabhupada: That is going on. One
man's food, another man's poison.
Mr. Koshi: No, no, there is a
purpose behind it.
Prabhupada: Yes. Purpose... That is
the way. That is the way.
Mr. Koshi: To?
Prabhupada: To spiritual
understanding in this age. Ecstasy. Sravanam kirtanam visnoh [SB 7.5.23]. You
have to follow the Vedic injunctions. Krsnotkirtana-gana-nartana-parau.
Mr. Koshi: So by looking at him you
are trying to rouse the interests of the people, or curiosity?
Prabhupada: You can take interest
in so many ways. If you are not interested in that way, read books. Are you
not interested in reading books? Read. We have got many ways. That is for mass
of people. The class of people who wants to understand this movement through
science, philosophy, come on, read these books.
Mr. Koshi: One of the conditions is
Prabhupada: That is sinful. Don't
you see, illicit sex, what havoc it has done?
Mr. Koshi: What exactly do you
Prabhupada: Illicit sex, do you
think it is...?
Mr. Koshi: Outside marriage, you
Prabhupada: Yes. Not only outside
marriage. Even in marriage, you cannot have sex as you like. You must have sex
according to the regulative principle or religious principle.
Mr. Koshi: Could you
Prabhupada: Yes. Just like only for
begetting nice children.
Mr. Koshi: For
Tamala Krsna: Good
Mr. Koshi: What is the meaning of
Prabhupada: Good children means not
these rogues and thieves, but one who can understand God. That is good
Mr. Koshi: It is the parents'
Garbhadhana-samskara. These are stated. It is not secret matter. When the
father goes to beget child, he has to perform ritualistic ceremonies in the
presence of relative, brahmanas. They will understand that "He is going now to
beget a child." It is not a secret thing. It is garbhadhana. And if in a
brahmana family the garbhadhana-samskara is not observed, then immediately he
becomes a sudra.
Mr. Koshi: What is not a secret
Prabhupada: Secret... Just like
when we go and have sex with wife secretly. It is not secret.
Mr. Koshi: There is a
Prabhupada: Yes. This is
Mr. Koshi: No, but do you think...
Don't you think that the children should be given freedom to choose
Prabhupada: Do you want to give
freedom to your children?
Mr. Koshi: I am asking
Prabhupada: No, no. What is the use
of giving freedom to a child with a razor? He will cut his throat, that's
Mr. Koshi: But at a later age,
perhaps when he is better...
Prabhupada: Later age, yes. That is
enjoined. When child is sixteen years old he can do as he likes. Not before
lalayet panca varsani dasa varsani
tadayet prapte tu sodase varse putram mitravad acaret [Niti
This is the moral instruction of
Canakya Pandita. Up to five years, don't chastise, don't take any action. Let
him be free. Whatever he likes, let him do. Then after fifth year, for ten
years you must be very strict. Then five years and ten years, fifteen. And
when he is sixteen years, treat him like a friend. Prapte tu sodase varse
putram mitravad acaret. At that time, no stricture that he will break. "My
dear boy, if you do like this, do like that..." This is necessary. And from
fifth year to fifteenth year you should chastise the sons and disciples just
like tiger. After five years.
Mr. Koshi: Using the
Tamala Krsna: That's how you
trained us, Srila Prabhupada.
Mr. Koshi: Did you
Tamala Krsna: Yes, by Prabhupada.
Even though we were not five years old, he treats us just like as if we were
five. Because spiritually we are still like that. So he is very strict with
Prabhupada: All these boys I
chastise regularly. Even a little mistake.
Mr. Koshi: You...?
Prabhupada: They tolerate. They
Tamala Krsna: We are
Mr. Koshi: What is your message to
Prabhupada: Again you have asked
Mr. Koshi: Yes, I wanted to know.
Mr. Koshi: Yes, I know,
Prabhupada: After reading Ramayana
you are asking whose father is Sita. (laughter) I have explained
Indian man: You have seen our
Mr. Koshi: What films?
Indian man: We invite you to come
to see the films. The whole thing (indistinct). You can come today with me. I
will take you. You can come with me at about 8.30.
Mr. Koshi: Night? No, no. I have to
Indian man: No, we can make
your..., you can make your choice. If you want to know about the Society, we
can show you the whole film, how the whole thing started and everything is
given. From eight p. m. we are showing every day. (Hindi)
(indistinct background discussion
about other guests)
Mr. Koshi: Shall we...
Prabhupada: Write nice
Mr. Koshi: Don't worry about that.
It is my job.
Prabhupada: It is very
Mr. Koshi: I think he will read out
the article when it appears. Could you do that?
Devotee: We will bring the article
to you. It is coming this next week.
Mr. Koshi: Yes, within the next
two, three weeks, depending on the availability of space.
Tamala Krsna: So print some of this
philosophy that Prabhupada has been explaining to you.
Mr. Koshi: Yeah, but I have to put
it so simply, because our readers may not be able to understand. And I don't
know Sanskrit either. I mean I have been desperately listening.
Prabhupada: I am explaining. You
Mr. Koshi: I have accidentally
stumbled into the...
Indian man: That's okay. You are
most welcome. You can see the film, because there is no time today, so today
they have program, and they are doing every day practically. You can select
your time and let us know. I am there for the last... (indistinct -- telling
him to come and he will show him around the temple, etc.) Contact him and make
an arrangement. You can make arrangement with him also. I am going to arrange
a month at my place also. And then next time, you can invite.
Mr. Koshi: Right. Very useful.
Prabhupada: Give him some
Tamala Krsna: Yes, Srila
Mr. Koshi: Thank you very
Prabhupada: All right. (guests