"How A Devotee Approaches Krsna"

Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.3.11-12
September 17, 1972, Los Angeles

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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada<br>Founder-Acharya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness
 

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Pradyumna: (leads chanting, etc.)

sastham atrer apatyatvam
vrtah prapto 'nasuyaya
anviksikim alarkaya
prahladadibhya ucivan

Translation: "The sixth incarnation of the purusa was the son of the sage Atri. He was born in the womb of Anasuya, who prayed for an incarnation. He spoke on the subject of transcendence to Alarka, Prahlada and others, (Yadu, Haihaya, etc.)."

Prabhupada: Purport?
 
Pradyumna: "The Lord incarnated Himself as Dattatreya, the son of Rsi Atri and Anasuya. The history of the birth of Dattatreya as an incarnation of the Lord is mentioned in the Brahmanda Purana in connection with the story of the devoted wife. It is said there that Anasuya, the wife of Rsi Atri, prayed before the lords Brahma, Visnu and Siva as follows: ‘My lords, if you are pleased with me and if you desire me to ask from you some sort of blessings, then I pray that you combine together to become my son.' This was accepted by the lords, and as Dattatreya the Lord expounded the philosophy of the spirit soul and especially instructed Alarka, Prahlada, Yadu, Haihaya, etc."

Prabhupada: So here we see that you can have God as your son. There are so many instances. Just like Devaki got Krsna as his (her) son; mother Yasoda got God as his (her) son; Saci-mata, (s)he also got Caitanya Mahaprabhu as son. So this is better philosophy than to accept God as father. That is especially in the Vaisnava philosophy. Others, the impersonalist, voidists, they have no conception of God. Voidists -- "Ultimately everything is zero," and the impersonalists, "God has no form." Both are the same thing, in a different language. The voidists, they say, "Ultimately there is nothing but zero," and the impersonalists statement that "Maybe something, but it is not person, it is imperson."

Therefore in the Padma Purana this Buddhist theory, voidism, and the Sankara's theory, impersonalism, they are taken as one and the same. Pracchannam bauddham ucyate. Pracchannam bauddham. The Buddhists, they decline to accept the authority of Vedas, and the Mayavadis, the impersonalists, they want to accept the authority of Vedas, but under the garb of Buddhism. Therefore Caitanya Mahaprabhu has given His remark, veda na maniya bauddha haya ta' nastika. According to Vedic line of thought, anyone who does not accept the authority of Vedas, he is called atheist. Just like the Muhammadans, they also call "kafir." One who does not accept the authority of Koran, they call "kafir." And the Christians also, they call "heathens." So there are different terms. So according to our Vedic line of thought, anyone who does not accept the Vedic way of life, he is called atheist. Therefore Buddhist, according to Vedantists, Buddhist are called atheist. Actually Buddha philosophy does not accept God, neither soul. They simply philosophize on the material elements, and they want to finish the material exis..., dismantle the material elements. Nirvana. So Caitanya Mahaprabhu has remarked that the Buddhists are honest. They frankly say that "We don't accept your Vedas." But the Shankarites, they are cheaters, because they are accepting Vedas, but on the basis of Buddha philosophy. That is cheating.

So there are many conception of God. But there is a conception of God: to accept God as son. That is only in Vaisnava philosophy, because we are eternal servants of God. That is our philosophy. Jivera svarupa haya nitya-krsna-dasa [Cc. Madhya 20.108-109]. The living entity, his real constitutional position is to serve God. We have several times explained this fact, that the part and parcel of God must be engaged in the service of the Lord. Just like this finger is part and parcel of my body. Its duty is to serve the body. It has no other duty. The finger cannot go elsewhere and serve something else; it must serve my body. Therefore, it is part and parcel. Similarly, if I am part and parcel of God, then my only duty is to serve God. This is Vaisnava philosophy. So therefore, in Vaisnava philosophy, everything in relationship with God is service.
 
You have seen the picture in our Nectar of Devotion. Krsna's friends... Krsna is resting. They are all engaged in service. Somebody is fanning, somebody is massaging. Although they are friends, there is equality, none of them think that Krsna is greater than them. No. They think, "Krsna is our friend, very nice friend, very beautiful friend, and very powerful friend." Every day they go to the forest, and they see one demon is killed by Krsna. So they become very much devoted. Their love for Krsna increased by seeing Krsna's activities, beauty, opulence. Similarly, the gopis. So they did not think Krsna is God. They did not know. Even Mother Yasoda, Nanda Maharaja, all the inhabitants of Vrndavana, they did not know, neither they did care to know whether Krsna is God or not. They simply loved Krsna, without any identification. We are worshiping God, Krsna, because we are impressed with so many things, that Krsna is the Supreme Lord, He is the Absolute Truth. And therefore we are little inclined. "All right, let us serve Krsna if He is God." You see? There is some condition: "If Krsna is God, so if I do not love, if I do not worship, there may be something wrong." So that is business. But amongst the gopis and the cowherds boy and the Vrndavana inhabitants, there is no business. "We love Krsna unconditionally. That's all. We do not know anything except Krsna." This is Vrndavana atmosphere.

So mother Yasoda, Nanda and other elderly gopis, they used to treat Krsna as son, as beloved son, because if we accept God as father or mother... There is conception of mother also. The saktas... There are many devotees of Durga, Kali. They also accept the mother. The Christians accept as father. The conception of father and mother, that is good, but there is little service... Because children, they take service from the mother and father. They give, render very little service to the father and mother. Every children, every man, every woman has taken so much services from the father and mother. Everyone knows that. Just like those who are mothers here, how much service they are giving to the little children, how much careful they are that their child may not be in some difficulty, always anxious. Similarly, this philosophy, to accept God as son, means opportunity for rendering more service than to accept God as father.

God is neither father nor... He is father. Actually He is father, because He is the origin of everything. Janmady asya yatah [SB 1.1.1]. Krsna also says, aham bija-pradah pita. Pita means father. So actually, God's position is father. He is father of everything. Not... All living entities, all material energy. As... If you discover something, it is called "the father of this scientific discovery." So He has discovered everything, material and spiritual both. Therefore He is original father of everyone. Not only of the living entities, but also stones, woods, earth, water, fire, everything. He has created. Bhumir apo 'nalo vayuh kham mano buddhir eva..., prakrtir me astadha, bhinna prakrtir me astadha. In the Bhagavad-gita. So He has created everything. He is actually the father. But out of love, the devotees, they accept the father as son, to give more service. Father is obliged to give service to the son. He has given birth; therefore he has obligation to maintain the son, to give service.

So here, if you accept God as son, then you cannot avoid the obligation of service. In other way you can avoid. This is compulsory. Therefore sometimes devotees, they pray... Here it is said..., prayed for. The sixth incarnation of the purusa was the son of the sage Atri. He was born in the womb of Anasuya, who prayed for an incarnation. She requested that "You all three, you become my son." So next.

Pradyumna: Next verse?

Prabhupada: Yes.

Pradyumna: (leads chanting, etc.)

tatah saptama akutyam
rucer yajno 'bhyajayata
sa yamadyaih sura-ganair
apat svayambhuvantaram

Translation: "The seventh incarnation was advented as Yajna, the son of Prajapati Ruci and his wife Akuti. He controlled the period changed by the Svayambhuva Manu, assisted by demigods, as His son Yama and others."

Prabhupada: So you are marking that so many incarnation of God have been described. We are now in the seventh. So there is chronological number, which incarnation, what is His chronological number, what is His father's name, what is His mother's name, what are His activities, how the bodily feature, what is the mission. Everything is described in the sastra. Nowadays any rascal comes, and he says, "I am incarnation." What is your father's name? Whatever it is described? Whether in the sastra? Because incarnation, we cannot accept any rascal as incarnation without proper identification. But it has become a fashion now. Any rascal comes, says, "I am incarnation of God." So where is the mention? Some rascal says, "I was formerly Rama and Krsna." Another rascal accepts, "Oh, you were Rama and Krsna?"

So this kind of rascalism is not very good. You must accept the incarnation of God according to the description in the sastras. Not one rascal cheats you and you also become another rascal to accept it. Don't do that. You must know what are the indication of incarnation. This question was raised by Sanatana Gosvami to Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Because in this age of Kali, Caitanya Mahaprabhu's incarnation is stated in the sastra, in the Srimad-Bhagavatam, in the Upanisad, in Mahabharata. There are evidences. He appeared as the son of Jagannatha Misra, but His incarnation is stated in the sastra. Therefore we accept Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu as incarnation. Caitanya Mahaprabhu never said that "I am incarnation." Rather, to warn the ordinary people that they should not accept any so-called incarnation, when somebody stated Caitanya Mahaprabhu that "You are incarnation of Krsna," He immediately blocked His ears: "Don't say like that. It is great offense, great offense." Because He was playing the part of devotee. Caitanya Mahaprabhu was teaching us how to execute devotional service. And He deprecated Mayavada philosophy in so many ways. He was to establish the worship of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and He was exemplifying Himself, how to become a devotee. So He never mentioned that He is incarnation. But we understand from the features of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu that He (is) incarnation of Krsna.

It is stated in the Srimad-Bhagavatam, krsna-varnam tvisakrsnam [SB 11.5.32]. Krsna-varnam. Krsna varnayati, or in the category of Krsna. Krsna-varnam. And tvisa akrsna, by His complexion He is not black. Akrsna. Akrsna means not black. So not black. It may be other color. Yes. That may be. But in the Srimad-Bhagavatam it is said... When Gargamuni was preparing the horoscope of Krsna, he said, suklo raktas tatha pita idanim krsnatam gatah. Incarnation of God, either white, suklo raktah, either red, yellow, or black. These colors accepted. So Gargamuni said, suklo raktas tatha pita idanim krsnatam gatah: "Your son, this son, formerly He appeared in white color, in red color, in yellow color. Now He has appeared in black color." So Caitanya Mahaprabhu was yellow color. Therefore, when it is said in the Srimad-Bhagavatam, tvisa akrsnam, "He is not black," that means "He is pita, He is yellow." Krsna-varnam tvisakrsnam sangopangastra-parsadam [SB 11.5.32]. "He is always associated by His devotees."

Caitanya Mahaprabhu, so long He lived on this planet, He was always associated with the devotees. The most confidential devotees, Caitanya Mahaprabhu: sri-krsna-caitanya, the central point, prabhu nityananda sri-advaita gadadhara srivasadi-gaura-bhakta-vrnda. So sangopangastra-parsadam, krsna-varnam. He is always chanting Krsna. He is Krsna Himself, tvisa akrsnam, but His bodily complexion is not like that. And other feature: sangopangastra-parsadam, and He is always associated with His devotees. They are His soldiers. Sangopangastra-parsadam. In other incarnation, Krsna comes with weapon. As Lord Ramacandra He came with bows and arrows. As Krsna He came with disc and club. Here Krsna has come compassionately to distribute mercy to the fallen souls. So He has not taken any astra, any weapon. His weapon is His associate devotee. Caitanya Mahaprabhu's associate, Nityananda Prabhu, He is going to kill Jagai and Madhai, not by weapon, but by His mercy. He went to preach Jagai and Madhai, the drunkards, the woman-hunters, flesh-eaters, and they hurt Him. Still, He delivered them.
 
So these astra..., this is the astra. By argument, by philosophy, by entreating, by flattering, they are giving Krsna consciousness. Advaita Prabhu, Nityananda Prabhu. Yes. Otherwise, they are already killed. Krsna, if He kills them, then everything is finished. They are already killed by so many bad habits. They are going to hell. So those who are already killed, so what will be benefit by killing them? So deliver them. Sangopangastra-parsadam. This is the incarnation of Krsna. It is stated. And how He is worshiped? Yajnaih sankirtana-prayair yajanti hi sumedhasah [SB 11.5.32]. The worshiping method of Lord Caitanya incarnation of Krsna is not very difficult. Simply yajnaih sankirtanaih. You perform this yajna of sankirtana: Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. So Sanatana Gosvami, he was a minister. So to confirm this, he asked Caitanya Mahaprabhu that "How I can accept somebody as incarnation?" So Caitanya Mahaprabhu said that "That is not difficult. Everything is stated in the sastras, and from the evidence of sastra, you can accept who is incarnation."

So our point is that you do not become so foolish and rascal, that any rascal comes and poses himself as God, incarnation of God... You kick on their face. Please consult the sastras whether his name, his father's name, his mother's name, his features of the body, his activities, are corroborating with the sastra. Then accept. Otherwise don't.

Thank you very much. (end)
 
>>> Ref. VedaBase => Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.3.11-12 -- Los Angeles, September 17, 1972

© 2001 The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust International. Used with permission.

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