"Society Friendship and Love"
Pradyumna (leads chanting, etc.):
tatrapasyat sthitan parthah
pitrn atha pitamahan
acaryan matulan bhratrn
putran pautran sakhims tatha
svasuran suhrdas caiva
senayor ubhayor api
tan samiksya sa kaunteyah
sarvan bandhun avasthitan
visidann idam abravit
Translation: "There Arjuna could see, within the midst of the armies of both parties, his fathers, grandfathers, teachers, maternal uncles, brothers, sons, grandsons, friends, and also his father-in-law and well-wishers -- all present there. When the son of Kunti, Arjuna, saw all these different grades of friends and relatives, he became overwhelmed with compassion and spoke thus."
Prabhupada: This is the problem. Now Arjuna is facing the problem. What is this problem? Suppose you bring all my friends, my relatives, my sons, grandsons, my father-in-law, brother-in-law, friends, my animals... Because there were soldiers, senayor ubhayor api, there were animals also. Horses, elephants. They are also within the membership. According to Vedic conception, the animals, they are also members of your family. Because they are giving service. Not that one section of the members of my family I give protection, and the other section, I take everything from them and then cut throat. This is not civilization. You keep your sons, wife, daughters, cows, dogs, they are animals, asses, domestic animals, horses, elephants. If you are rich, you can keep elephants also. It does not mean... Either family-wise or state-wise, it does not mean that you give protection to some members and cut throat of the others. Oh, how horrible it is. So all of them were present now. And the problem is that he has to kill them, Arjuna. It is fight, it is a family fight.
So some of the family members on the other side, and some of the family members this side. So other side also, what are they? Tatrapasyat sthitan parthah pitrn atha pitamahan. Pitrn, teachers, and pitrn also. Pitrn means those who are on the status of father. And Bhismadeva was a grandfather, a real grandfather, pitamaha. He is on the other side. Dronacarya, he is on the other side, teacher. They had to be respected. Actually Arjuna did so. Before fighting with Dronacarya, he first of all throw one arrow on his lotus feet, obeisances. This is the etiquette. "My dear sir, you have taught me this fighting science, now it is being used against you, duty. So I offer my obeisances." And Dronacarya also, threw another arrow, touching his head: "My dear boy, become blessed." This is duty. How blessed? "By killing me. I know you will kill me, so I give you blessings that you kill me." This is duty. The disciple is fighting, touching the feet of Dronacarya: "My dear sir, it is duty. Now we are face to face to fight. So give me your blessing." This is one side. The other side, blessing, "Yes, you have my all blessings."
So this is the problem. This material world is problematic, especially when we have got these family relationships. "Society, friendship, and love, divinely bestowed upon man." They say. (laughs) It is not divinely bestowed. It is not. It is entanglement. It is entanglement. Dehapatya. There is verse in the Second Canto of Srimad-Bhagavatam. Dehapatya. What is that verse? Dehapatya-kalatradi. Deha, first affection is with our body. "I am this Mr. Such and such. This is I am, this body." I have got attraction for this body. Then the offsprings, the by-products of this body. Apatya. Apatya means children. And how this by-product is made? Kalatra, through wife. Stri. Stri means which expands. Vistara, expands. I am alone. I accept wife, stri, and with her cooperation I expand. So one who helps me to expand, that is called stri. Every Sanskrit word has got meaning. Why woman is called stri? Because she helps, expanding myself. How expanding? Dehapatya-kalatradisu [SB 2.1.4]. I get my children. First of all I was affectionate to my body. Then, as soon as I get a wife, I become affectionate to her. Then, as soon as I get children, I become affectionate to children. In this way I expand my affection for this material world. This material world, attachment. It is not required. It is a foreign thing. This material body is foreign. I am spiritual. I am spiritual, aham brahmasmi. But because I wanted to lord it over the material nature, Krsna has given me this body. Daiva-netrena. He is giving you body. He is giving the body of Brahma, He is giving you the body of ant. As you desire. As you desire. If you want the body of a tiger, Krsna will give you. If you want the body of a hog, He will give you. If you want the body of Brahma, He will give you. If you want the body of a demigod, He will give you. If you want the body of American, He will give you. Englishman, He will give you. Indian, He will give you. That is Krsna. He is so kind. Ye yatha mam prapadyante tams tathaiva bhajamy aham [Bg. 4.11]. Krsna is very kind. Just like a son disobedient to the father, but he wants to enjoy something. Still, father giving him, "All right, you take money, and enjoy." Father is so kind. "You become free. Whatever you like, you can do. You take some money." This is our concession.
This material life is a concession to us, given by God, for gratifying our senses. This is material life. Krsna does not want that you become entangled in this material world. That He doesn't want. Why He should want? Krsna... Just like you produce your sons, children. Why? To remain in household life, enjoy in the company of wife, children, friends. This is... One can understand. Why I take so much responsibility of family? I was alone. Why I get married? Why I beget children? Why I make friends? Because I want to enjoy. So Krsna is also a person. Nityo nityanam cetanas cetananam (Katha Upanisad 2.2.13). He has produced so many children, these living entities. Why? To enjoy along with them. Just try to understand the psychology. Yato va imani bhutani jayante, janmady asya yatah [SB 1.1.1]. Where this idea came from, that "I shall be happy within society, friendship and love, children?" Wherefrom this idea came? Where is the origin? The origin is there in Krsna. Janmady asya yatah [SB 1.1.1]. Janmady asya yatah. The origin of love. Just like Krsna is loving Radharani. So the loving idea came from Krsna. Anything that is within our experience, that is in Krsna. So Krsna cannot be impersonal. That is nonsense. Krsna is exactly a person like me, you. But the difference is that He's very, very, unlimitedly powerful. I am limited. This is the difference. So Krsna also wants that to live with His family. Our Krsna consciousness movement is just to train ourselves again to enter into the family of Krsna. This is our movement. With these families, the so-called families, we are suffering. We are suffering. But this family idea is there this. That is perfect in Krsna, with Krsna. The family idea, wherefrom family idea comes without it is being situated in Krsna? Because nothing can be visible without being in Krsna. He is the origin. Janmady asya yatah [SB 1.1.1]. Aham sarvasya prabhavah: [Bg. 10.8] "I am the origin of everything."
So whatever we are seeing in this material world, the origin is in Krsna. But here it is perverted. That is the only difference. Just like a tree. The original tree is standing erect. But when you see the perverted reflection of the tree, everything is topsy-turvied. The upside has gone downside. You have seen the reflection of the tree. So the upside, downside. When the upside of the tree becomes downside, that is called perverted reflection. So this material world is perverted reflection of the spiritual world. It is false in this sense because it is reflection. Otherwise, exactly the same things are there in the spiritual world. Urdhva-mulam adhah-sakham asvattham prahur avyayam [Bg. 15.1]. There is. In the Bhagavad-gita you will find in the Fifteenth Chapter. Urdhva-mulam. Here, this material world, the origin -- mulam means root -- is upside, upside. Because it is reflection. This tree is erect, and this is reflection. So the root has gone upside. So here is the problem. Because we are attached to our this so-called family, society, friendship and love... When Arjuna was faced, then he became krpaya parayavisto visidann idam abravit. "How it is possible, Krsna, that I have to kill the other side, my fathers, my father-in-law, my grandfather, my sons, my grandsons, my brother, my so many friends?" So it is natural. Krpaya paraya avistah. He becomes overwhelmed with compassion. Krpaya parayavisto visidan. Very morosely. "Oh, Krsna, I will have to fight with them. I will have to kill them." Why this consciousness came? The other side also, Duryodhana, why he did not think in that way? Why Arjuna is thinking? Because he is devotee. That is the difference. A devotee thinks like that. A devotee does not like to kill anyone, even an ant. Why he should be encouraged to kill his friends? A devotee is like that. Yasyasti bhaktir bhagavaty akincana sarvair gunais tatra samasate surah. This is the result of devotional life. Arjuna was insulted. Arjuna was taken away all his belongings. Arjuna was banished for thirteen years. His wife was insulted. So many atrocities was done to him. Still, when the question of killing came, he was not very happy: "No." This is Vaisnava. This is Vaisnava. He is ready to excuse even the greatest enemy. But Krsna does not want. If you insult His devotee, the devotee may excuse, but Krsna will not excuse. This is Krsna's position. Therefore be careful to insult a devotee. A devotee may excuse you. But Krsna will not excuse you. Krsna is so strict. He cannot tolerate any insult to His devotee. Therefore this arrangement of fighting. Arjuna wanted, "No, let them be excused." Krsna wanted, "No, you must fight. You must kill them." This is the position. So he is within the dilemma. Krsna is insisting that "You must fight and kill them," but he is thinking, "How shall I kill my kinsmen?" This is the problem. Therefore, tan samiksya sa kaunteyah sarvan bandhun avasthitan. All friends are there. Krpaya parayavisto visidann idam abravit. So this is one side, that if you want to please Krsna, then you have to be prepared for killing your so-called relatives. If you want Krsna. If you want to please Krsna.
So this whole Vedic civilization is made just to train how you can be detached from this so-called family affection. This is Vedic training. First of all brahmacari. Brahmacari means to lead the life of austerity. A brahmacari is supposed to live to serve the spiritual master at his home, and he has to work just like a menial. He may be a king's son or a very great brahmana's son, but as soon as he agrees to live with the spiritual master, he has to live just like a menial servant. Whatever the spiritual master will order, he has to do it. This is brahmacari. And they will gladly do, because they are children.
Brahmacari life begins from five years. So you ask any child do anything, he will do. They are learned. They are given education, "Go from door to door, house to house, and bring some alms." So brahmacari means the neighborhood, their sons. So when the brahmacari goes for begging, "Mother, give me something, alms," so immediately, some rice, some dahl, some atta, is given, or some vegetables, sometimes some money. So they bring everything to the spiritual master and it becomes the property of the spiritual master. Because he has begged, it is not his property. Sarvasvam guru-veditam(?). Everything is guru's property. So much so that after cooking everything, the spiritual master will call, "My dear boys, come on. Take prasadam." But if he forgets to call somebody, he will not touch. He will not touch. This is brahmacari. "Oh, spiritual master has not called me; so I will fast." (laughter) He begged the rice and vegetables and atta and dahl. It is cooked. But when it is cooked, that is also spiritual master's property. If the spiritual master does not ask him to take, he cannot take. He cannot touch. This is brahmacari life. So therefore the first training is given, to become austere, tolerate, how to tolerate, how to call other women as "mother." He is learning from the beginning, a small child. He is trained up to call any woman, even of his own age, not "sister," -- "mother." This is the training. Matrvat para-daresu. This is education. Matrvat para-daresu. Canakya Pandita, the great politician, has given the definition of a learned scholar. Who is learned scholar? He has given the definition. What is this? Matrvat para-daresu. To see every woman except his wife as mother. This is education. This is education, perfection of education, when you can see all women except your wife as mother. This is education. Matrvat para-daresu para-dravyesu lostravat. And others' property? Just like garbage in the street. Nobody is interested in the garbage. You throw. That is education. And atmavat sarva-bhutesu. And thinking all living entities as your own self. If you feel pains and pleasure by something, you could not afflict the pains to others. If your throat is cut, if your head is cut, you feel so much pain, how you can cut the head of another animal? This is education. Samah sarvesu-bhutesu. This is education, three things. This is the test of education.
yah pasyati sa panditah
Where is? Where is that pandita? There is no such thing now.
So this problem, attachment for this material world, gradually we have to cut it. That is the Vedic civilization. If you want to go back to home, back to Godhead, then at the same time, if you remain attached to this material world, so-called society, friendship and love, then it is not possible. So long you will have a pinch of attraction with this material world, there is no possibility of being transferred to the spiritual world. This is the position. Therefore by training, by education, we have to become detached. Detached, this society, friendship and love. We have to understand the falsity of this so-called society, friendship and love. Because we are being carried away by the waves of maya. Bhaktivinoda Thakura has sung, mayar bose, jaccho bhese, Khaccho habudubu bhai. Just like we see sometimes in rainy season, so many plants and creepers and vegetables and so many other things are floating in the river, going. Similarly, we also, all floating in the waves of maya. Mayar bose, jaccho bhese, khaccho habudubu. Sometimes drowned, sometimes on the surface, sometimes on the other shore, sometimes on this shore. This is going on. So long we are in this material world, we are being tossed by different currents, and sometimes I am here as the master of some kingdom, and sometimes I am dog of somebody else. This is my position. The same thing. Very good example, that we are being carried away by the waves of maya. Sometimes we are gathering together. So many straws and vegetables, they gather together. And sometimes the same vegetables and straws are thrown asunder. One is there, one is here. So here also, we assemble here as society, friendship and love exactly like that. In the waves of maya. Then nobody is your father, nobody is your mother, nobody is your sister, nobody. It is simply mayic, illusory combination. Illusory combination, temporary combination. And we are so much attached to this combination that we are refusing to go back to home, back to Godhead. This is our position.
Therefore we have to meet them in the battlefield of Kuruksetra, and if required, we have to kill them and execute the order of Krsna. This is our position. If we are thinking that "In this material existence I shall be safe, assisted by my society, friendship, love, country, and politics and sociology," "No, no, sir, it is not possible." It is not possible. You have to take care of yourself. Your so-called society, friendship, love, country, nation, and this, never will be able to help you. Because you are under the clutches of maya. Daivi hy esa gunamayi mama maya duratyaya [Bg. 7.14].
gunaih karmani sarvasah
kartaham iti manyate
You are under the clutches of maya. you have no independence. Neither anyone has got any independence to save you. That is not possible. The same example as I gave sometimes, that you learn how to drive aeroplane. So you go high in the sky. But if you are in danger, no other aeroplane can help you. You are finished. Therefore you must be a very careful pilot to take care of yourself. Similarly, in this material world everyone individually has to take care of himself. How he can be saved from the clutches of maya. That is Krsna consciousness movement. A teacher can give you hints. The acarya can give you hints that "You can be saved in this way." But the execution of the duties, that is in your hand. If you perform the spiritual duties rightly, then you are saved. Otherwise, even acarya gives you instruction, if you don't follow, so how he can save you? He can save you by instruction, by his mercy, as much as possible. But you have to take it in your hands seriously.
So this problem is... Arjuna is facing now this problem. That is general problem. Dehapatya-kalatradisu. Dehapatya. Deha means this body. Apatya means children. Kalatra means wife. Dehapatya-kalatradisv atma-sainyesv asatsv api [SB 2.1.4]. We are thinking that "We shall be protected by my these soldiers. I have got my sons, grandsons, my grandfather, my father-in-law, my brother-in-law, my so many society, friendship and love." Everyone is thinking like that. "My nation, my community, my philosophy, my politics. No. Nothing can save you. Dehapatya-kalatradisu asatsu api. They are all temporary. They come and go. Asatsu api. Pramatto tasya nidhanam pasyann api na pasyati. One who is too much attached to this society, friendship and love, he is pramatta. Pramatta means crazy, madman. Pasyann api na, tasya nidhanam. He does not see. Although he is seeing that "My father has died. When I was a child, my father was giving me protection. Now my father has gone away. Who is giving me protection? Is my father alive to give me protection? Who is giving me protection? My mother was giving me protection. Now who is giving me protection? I was in family, my sons, my daughters, my wife, but I left them. Now who is giving me protection?" And actually Krsna gives you protection always. Not your society, friendship and love. They will be finished. As your father is finished, as your grandfather is finished, similarly, your sons, grandsons, will be finished. None of them will be able to give you protection. Only Krsna will be giving you protection. Therefore you surrender to Krsna. Sarva-dharman parityajya mam ekam saranam vraja, aham tvam sarva-papebhyo moksa... [Bg. 18.66]. "I shall give you protection." Kaunteya pratijanihi na me bhaktah pranasyati: [Bg. 9.31] "My devotee is never vanquished." So the best thing is to take to Krsna consciousness, fully surrender unto Him, and you will be protected. Otherwise, there is no other way of being protected. We'll be carried away by the waves of maya. This is the position.
Thank you very much. Hare Krsna. (end)
>>> Ref. VedaBase => Bhagavad-gita 1.26-27 -- London, July 21, 1973