MAN WOMAN INTERACTION LECTURE #8 Eger, Hungary, 3rd Aug 2007 Part 2
HH BVPS Maharaja: Who is the Saci-suta?
Mataji: He is not here.
HH BVPS Maharaja: He is not here, I see. That makes it that much easier. [Laughter] I can answer in 5 minutes, and he is not here to complain. [Laughter] Okay. So he has… Okay, first he seems to be asking about shastric reference… This is on astronomy. That Meru wobbles making a whole turn-around during 24,000 years. But here his thought I said that falls behind with 4 degrees.
Okay, so basically it’s Brihad-hora-sastra I think by Parashara that explains so many things. Now, what we were saying is that Meru wobbles and when the earth planet, when it goes around, then it moves like this, so it goes in a circle, but because it… It’s like if you take a plate and put a mark on the plate. And you take the plate and put it slightly on edge, but it’s leaning, then you flip it, so that it will go around in a circle, you know. You’ll find that it wobbles, but every time that moves and that, that little line that you marked, every time it goes around, then it moves backwards a little bit. So that wobble causes the Bhu-mandala to move 4 degrees back every… Whatever is the time that it does that, I think it’s a year. So in other words, the earth wobbles, and that wobble makes it go back 4 degrees every year. And the wobble on Meru, then that goes over 24,000 thousand years. Like that, that’s I think they call it, what’s that called? I don’t remember. Okay, so then that’s just to make that statement correct. That’s different from the…
Mataji: I think precession.
HH BVPS Maharaja: Precession, yeah. Also you have another… I think that’s what they call it in the West. The Vedic, they call it something else. Each one has a slightly different one, you know. Lahiri has one, but from what I can see is, Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura, his writings were in line with Lahiri, so… Ayanamsa, it’s called Ayanamsa, so we use Lahiri Ayanamsa, like that, because it’s the closest to observation, like that. Okay.
Written question: Does this wobbling have anything to do with the 24 hour rotation of the whole planetary system, as mentioned by Srila Prabhupada in Mayapur on March…
HH BVPS Maharaja: I don’t get here, if it’s second to the third, or 23rd 1977…
Written question: …and also by the Bhagavatam, when speaking about the movements of the sun and the Shishumara planetary system. Then quoting, “This planetary system is rotating from East to West, it is hanging like the chandelier, taking shelter of the Polestar, we can see every night.”
HH BVPS Maharaja: Means, the two are… Means, with what I was saying it was not connected. Like that, because the wobble of Meru and the planets going around are two different things, because everything moves, that’s why it’s bewildering, everything adjusts. So basically the Polestar is there, all the other planets are in line with that. So as it moves, then it naturally makes them turn in this spiral, in that form, as a spiral. If you have something, a point, and you hang two things off of it, if you spin it, then as the ropes will follow it, the other part will follow behind. Yeah, like that. So you’ll get that.
Written question: Matsya Purana mentions the planets and stars all attached to the Polestar by astrocords [indistinct 06:20] called pravaha. The revolution motion of the Polestar causes the orbital motion of other planets, the stars.
HH BVPS Maharaja: So he wants to know, is the wobbling caused by the connection to Meru.
[Discussion in Hungarian about how to translate “wobble”]
HH BVPS Maharaja: Wobbling? You figured…got a word?
Translator: Anyway, we catched the point… I don’t know, so…
HH BVPS Maharaja: [indistinct 07:53]..wobble authorities. [Laughter] Okay, I guess you have to ask… Okay. So then…
Written question: 5) Why this turnaround in Meru fall behind 4 degrees?
HH BVPS Maharaja: We said, the falling behind is not Meru, it’s the Bhu-mandala.
Written question: 6)Does this turn-around in Meru mean that the whole Bhu-mandala turn around in every 24,000 years?
HH BVPS Maharaja: Wobble doesn’t mean turn. Wobble means, it’s in one place, it just moves like this. That’s a wobble. Then you have turning. So you have a turn and a wobble. So the turning of the Bhu-mandala, then that’s a different thing. That I know, it moves in 24 hours, like that, so…
Written question: Is there any connection with the moon?
HH BVPS Maharaja: Not that I know of. This wobble of Meru doesn’t have any connection with the moon. So everything has its own wobble. And since the person is not here, then no more questions [Laughter]. Then we’ll move on, unless there is some other astrologers here. No? Dangerous to ask questions when you are not here.
Mataji: He is not here.
HH BVPS Maharaja: Oh, even better, okay. [Laughter] Okay. So here, he has a very drawn-out thing on.. In the history of the different years, he is focusing on the Brihadratha, Pradyota, Sishunaga, Nanda, and Morad (?) dynasties. Okay, so then he has a problem here with the date, is that Vikramaditya isn’t mentioned in the Bhagavatam, because Vikramaditya is not in the sun dynasty, or main one in the moon dynasty. He is in the moon dynasty. Because generally they will give the histories of the sun and moon dynasties, but the focus is always on the sun. Like that, so then the point is is, he was there, but Vikramaditya lived for 2,000 years, because he fought for the demigods and got a blessing that he would live a 1,000 years, no, he would rule for a 1,000 years. So then he said, “Well, what’s the use of ruling if you don’t have a prime minister?” So they gave the blessing that his prime minister will also live for a 1,000 years. And then, what he would do is, he would sit on the throne, because it was “rule for a thousand years,” he’d sit on the throne for 6 months, and then his prime minister would sit for 6 months, and for 6 months he go off and study things and learn things. So that way then he and his minister lived for 2,000 years, much to the annoyance of the modern academics. [Laughter] You know, you are not supposed to do that, like that.
He is saying that the kings in the Bhagavatam isn’t in order. It will be in order, but the difficulty is is, order is meant in… Means, order can mean chronological of time, or, as we see is generally used, is chronology in action. Right? Means, if you wanna fold up the fire element, you have to fold up the earth element first. Earth goes into water, water into fire, then fire into air. Does that make sense? So in other words, it’s the application in how you are going to get yourself out of the material world, so that’s the most important chronology. Just like sambandha-abhideya-prayojana is how you logically explain it. But how it’s applied, is sambandha-prayojana-abhideya, because only when you want to do something, then you do it. Then from doing it, then you’ll get the prayojana. So from thinking you go to the need, need then generates activity, activity generates result. Does that make sense? So you are going sambandha, then the need generated by prayojana, then abhideya, then the result generated by prayojana. Does that make sense? But to understand it, then you go sambandha-abhideya-prayojana. So since the modern academy basically is just trying to understand it, they’ll generally try to put it in a logical order. But that always then makes a problem, because the Vedic is being put into order of application. So sometimes it seems mixed, but it’s still working in the logical way. Okay.
Then he wants to know who the abhiras, garbharis, kankas and others are. So the only place I can think, I don’t remember the name of the book, I’ve heard that… What’s his name? Vagisha is coming, rumor has it. But unfortunately he is connected to someone else who rumor has it is coming [Laughter] Like that, so then if he shows up then somebody can ask him, there is a book written by an Indian scholar where he uses the Bhagavatam timeline and then shows exact dates and everything for it, so he works out what all the Western scholars are jumping up and down and steam whistling out of their navel and all that kind of stuff. So someone can ask him, because he will know the name of the book. And since Premamoya is not here, that ends the answering of his questions, so does anybody else have any questions?
Prabhu: When you were leading the seminar about bhakti and the 4 Vedas, Vedic literature, you were giving important divisions of the Vedic literature. Could you please give reference that you were using?
HH BVPS Maharaja: Well, Prabhupada mentions it in the Gita, like that. So that’s standard, that would be, would be taken… That’s another one you could probably ask Vagisha, it’s a standard, it’s just one of those accepted concepts, like that. I think you also see in, I am not sure what is the book… Yeah, the Shankaracarya Kanchipuram, he speaks about it, his book I think on dharma or something, like that, one of his big fat books. The Madhvas use the same, they say 18, because they’ll take the four Upapuranas and classify them separately. So they’ll call them Upaveda, they classify them separately. While we call them Upaveda, Upapurana, doesn’t matter, but we classify them with Purana. Because Upaveda is generally used when they are connected to the Veda itself. But that way all the literatures get connected to the Veda, because some people don’t accept the smriti, so then all the shastras have to be connected directly to the Veda. Does that make sense? So then Upavedas will go, Rig will be Sthapana Veda, Yajur will be Ayurveda, Sama will be Gandharva Veda and Atharva will be Dhanur Veda. So they take them off as separate, so Madhva will talk about 18 books. But otherwise, 14 is the standard. Is that okay?
Prabhu: [In Hungarian, no translation]
HH BVPS Maharaja: The point is, Atharva means, all the knowledge. And Yajur meaning that it is the application. So you could call it by either. Does that make sense? Because Atharva is miscellaneous, what’s left over. So if you take all the knowledge together, then you’d look at it as Atharva Veda, it was the original book. And if you look at it as application, then you would call it Yajur, because Yajur is the Veda by which you perform, set up and make everything ready for the sacrifice. So one is, one basically you could say is the field, and the other would be arranging the field. While the Rig Veda is for establishing the relationships in the field, and the Sama would be then the offering of prayers and that to the Deities. You know what I am saying? So once you have a field, then you can call a Deity, you can worship a Deity. So either could be taken as the whole picture. So that’s the thing, there are no contradictions in the Vedic literature. It’s just the particular application that is being used, therefore it’s used in that way.
Like we have goodness, passion and ignorance. So we use that in the philosophy or the metaphysics of the material world. But that’s not different from sambandha, abhideya, prayojana, which is the philosophy that the metaphysics is based on. And then mucus, bile and air in Ayurveda, that’s also the same thing. It’s just that particular concept applied to the physical body. So they are not contradictory. It’s just you are looking at the same body of knowledge from different perspectives. So that body of knowledge is Krishna, and, we could say in specific, Garbhodakashayi Vishnu as the Virat-rupa. So the Veda is describing that. Because the first, the main verse of the Veda is Purusha Sukta, so that’s primary creation. So that is Garbhodakashayi Vishnu expanding as the Virat-rupa. Then the whole Veda expands from Purusha Sukta. So we can understand, the Vedic knowledge is just defining different aspects of Garbhodakashayi Vishnu. Does that make sense? And then Garbhodakashayi Vishnu expands from Kshirodakashayi, from Sankarshana, from Maha-Narayana, from Balarama, from Krishna. Like that.
[Laughter] I was just thinking, it was funny when you translate, not you, but some translators… You would speak the verse in Sanskrit and then they’ll say it also in Sanskrit, rather than just going to the translation. There you are just saying, “Yeah, like you said.” [Laughter] Is that okay?
HH BVPS Maharaja: So that’s the point, if it doesn’t make sense, figure out what’s the common point between them, because that will show you what principle is going on. Day and night are opposite, but they are dealing with light. Light and absence of light, so then there is no contradiction. Does that make sense? So whenever you run into a problem, always try to go back behind that. And that will work out something, but then some other problem, because then those will go back, and then everything will go back. Because originally there is Krishna, everything expands from there, so they may be expanding in different directions, but it would still have the common source. Does that make sense? So, there is no problem that the Vedic literature is contradictory, doesn’t make sense, not logical. No, it’s always consistent, always logical, because it’s always based on these principles of sambandha, abhideya, prayojana. Everything goes back to those three, because sambandha, abhideya and prayojana comes from sat-cit-ananda, and that’s what Krishna is. So that means, everything created must have the qualities of sat-cit-ananda. But depending upon the particular manifestation, we call them one thing or another. Sat-cit-ananda, then we have the energy, sandhini, samvit, hladini. That reflected in the material world, you get the mode of ignorance, mode of goodness, mode of passion. And that becomes your earth, water, fire, air, ether, mind, intelligence, like this. You know what I am saying? So it’s all consistent. Is that okay?
Prabhu: Yes, yes.
HH BVPS Maharaja: Okay.
Prabhu: When we read in the Bhagavatam that Krishna appears in all species of life to call back the living entities, how to understand this?
HH BVPS Maharaja: Means? Oh, okay. Means, we’ve already seen Him come as a fish, as a turtle, as a boar, like that. So every species of life He is the origin of. So that means, there is a form. So there is, in Nrsimha Purana there is a description of Krishna’s incarnation as a mosquito. That’s a couple of minutes. So He manifests as a mosquito, all the demigods take the form of bees and they buzz around Him in a circle, and then the pastime is over. [Laughter] Like that, so… That’s it, so every species of life have something happening. So from what I’ve heard that Yamaraja has the descriptions of all 8,400,000 incarnations. Because all he does all day is commit people to these different forms, so that’s the way he keeps himself Krishna conscious. But, you know, it’s hard enough for us to just remember a few of them, let alone so many. Right?
Prabhu: Saci Suta Prabhu was asking these questions about astrology, and he said that actually until someone doesn’t have faith in the Bhagavatam, it’s very difficult for them to relate to the concepts of the Meru mountain and other things that Bhagavatam describes. And it’s difficult especially for people who’ve grown up in the West and used to, or have learned sciences through means of, the basis of observation. So can we help them somehow, using the Bhagavatam, or the 5th canto to show them certain things in a parallel with things that they see to increase their faith to further read in the Bhagavatam?
HH BVPS Maharaja: But question is is why does one have to do it through that field? You can… Because the problem is is, the academy can’t accept it anyway, because it’s a religion. So that means, according to their definition, subjective, which means, different from the opinion of the old 70-year old guy sitting in the chair. So the point is is, you catch them personally. You know, in other words, they can take up the process and be a devotee by practice, and an academic by occupation. So they can’t change the way they view things publicly, or they may lose their seat. You have to speak the party line, or you are up for trouble, as some of our boys do in America, like that, so they speak what they like, the academics don’t like them, but all the intellectuals do. Right? So they are making in roads that way. You know what I am saying?
So the point is is, you are trying to get them to accept a superior power, a superior authority. So if that’s going to be blocked because of your definition of some of the structures of the universe, why would you bother? Means, if you could not go back to Godhead without understanding the structure of the universe, then definitely it has to be understood and accepted first-off. But we are trying to establish a superior authority, and if you accept that there is a superior authority, that opens the door to the faith. Then as their faith increases, then you can discuss more detail. You know what I am saying?
Because it’s like this. If you have someone who has come to, has observed the material energy and come to a wrong conclusion, how are you gonna convince them about the right one? Because it’s the same as with… It’s not like “we have our idea, they have theirs,” no, there is only the Vedic opinion, that’s it. God created the world, he wrote the shastra that explains how it’s created and what it looks like and what it does, so where would a second opinion even come in? Is it? Like here, an academic walks into our temple, talks to a few people that they feel they can intimidate, like that. Goes back, writes their thesis about how everybody is brainwashed and no direction in life and… That’s the academy. You know what I am saying?
When I started working with Indian classical music, so not wanting to look like an idiot, then you go out and buy some books on Indian classical music, written by scholars. You learn things, you put things together, you come up with how you feel, you go and talk to the musicians, I mean, the real ones, the guys you pay so many hundreds of forints to go visit them playing, performing. Anything I would mention that the academics said, they would just laugh. Because they are not musicians, so they can’t play, so therefore they just kind-of have their concept of what it is, when it’s something completely different. You know what I am saying?
Just like, here is a good one. “Then there is the Rig-veda age, and then after that then there is the Yajur-veda age, and then there is the Sutra-age, and then there is this age, and then there is that age,” and then there is old age and then there is death. [Laughter] And so crazy! All these scriptures exist at the same time. Just like if you’d say, “Well, there is Vedic Sanskrit and later then there was the classical Sanskrit.” No, there was always Vedic and always classical. The Vedas are written in Vedic Sanskrit, you speak classical Sanskrit. Just like there must be Hungarian that’s used let’s say by the lawyers, or Hungarian that’s used by the doctors. And so, we could say, “Yes, then there was the lawyeratic Hungarian age, and then there was the doctorite Hungarian age.” No, but doctors and lawyers and the common language go on together. And I don’t know, you might even have a Hungarian that’s used just in literature. But that also is going on at the same time. You know what I am saying? So they come up with these amazing concepts. I mean, you have to have some… In one sense, you could call it intelligence, to come up with these concepts. But at the same time, they are not necessarily very well thought-out.
It’s like this. When Sanskrit first became known, I think, in the early 1800′ in the West, all the scholars said, this is the origin of language. And as long as it was amongst the scholars, that was fine. But as soon as it hits the politicians, the religionists and everything else, it’s “Hey, wait a minute! Those savages are superior to us?” Right? Barbar, what you say? Barbaratic… [Laughter] I think the traditional word is huna [Laughter]. So, do you understand? Then they had to develop this whole concept of the Aryan invasion, and Aryans were also Europeans, so the Europeans had some connection with it. So they’ve developed this concept of Indoeuropean or something. There is no trace of this language, this culture, nothing! And still it’s in the books, which is against all their rules. If it’s not written on something, it didn’t exist. You know what I am saying? It’s only because Chaucer mentioned that a shop owner was very upset at a customer who insulted him, and he therefore turned around and passed air on him that we know what passing air existed a thousand years ago. Otherwise it didn’t exist, because it was not written. [Laughter] That’s the modern academy for you. Right? They hear of something they have absolutely no evidence of, but they are professing it. Now, that’s called faith. Faith that the white Europeans have to be the superior race, like that. Just let them try to buy that when Parashurama did his tour, that the Europeans are the kshatriyas that escaped and went that direction. Otherwise, that’s how they come out of Central Asia into Europe. Means, we have an explanation, they don’t. Is that okay?
Prabhu: This is all very much acceptable, but Saci Suta Prabhu’s service is to teach 5th canto to non-devotee audience who are coming to bhakti through study, so he has to somehow present it in such a way that they don’t freak out from hearing all these things.
HH BVPS Maharaja: Erm, then you do what they do in the academic field. You say, “This is the version of Srimad Bhagavatam. So we are studying how Srimad Bhagavatam sees these things.” Means, you can write a whole thesis on what was… How did the Egyptians see the world, and everybody will think you are a great academic. Of course, the day you say, “This is all true,” then they’ll throw you out. So the point is is, nowadays the academy will allow that this is the particular perception. So you present, this is how the Bhagavatam presents it, because this is what knowledge, how you use the knowledge for winding up material creation and getting out of here. Right? And you could show, one could show parallels how Buddhists do the same thing.
So in other words, those cultures or philosophies where the idea is dealing with material knowledge is to assist you cross over, become transcendental to it, they use the same formula. Do you understand? Then who is gonna be disturbed? At the same time is, we can give you dates, but the academics will say, “Where did you get those from?” Unless you got them from another academic with a PhD, they won’t accept them, even if they are right. And even if another PhD says they are right, unless he is the one in the seat, you fight with them. Right? As long as Leakey is alive, then our boys have problems, because he’ll just rat and ray because he has been the authority, and he is not about to… You can’t bend an old bamboo, and you can’t teach an old academic new theories. Isn’t that the saying? That’s not the old saying, or…? I mean, they may not appreciate, “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks,” so therefore you can’t teach an old academic new theories. Do you understand? The academy by its own definition can only accept things within the academy, which in theory is not a problem, because we also say, if it’s not in the Veda it’s not knowledge, right? The problem is is, God wrote the Veda, and others have the modern academy. So it creates problems.
So therefore if you really wanna get down to detail, then you have to say, “This is the opinion or the version of this particular group of persons, and the reason we are studying that is because that particular perspective is useful for freeing oneself from material consciousness.” Does that make sense? Then no one can say anything, because we are defining exactly what it means, but if we wanna say, “No historically this is exact dates and everything,” then there’ll be a disturbance. And our point is to get them to go back to Godhead, not to accept our dates. You know what I am saying? Therefore we can establish dates. Like I said that like one Indian scholar, he has gone through and given all those dates, and who all those people are and where their background is and everything. But, whether that would be accepted or not by others, I can’t say. So therefore we just say, “This is the perspective for this purpose,” and then everyone will be fine. You know what I am saying?
If you ran a class on Egyptian mysticism, and you said, “These are the mantras they chanted, and this is how they dressed,” and even had a day when everybody could dress up as Egyptian mystic and chant the mantras, they’d be happy. Right? But if you said, “Now, this is the only way to perfect your life,” then you might have a problem. See, the point is is, devotional service is such that one has an introduce to it, it doesn’t go away. So in other words, the maximum amount of things that they can accept with faith and practice will establish that much ajnata-sukriti, and in the association of devotees that ajnata-sukriti can be turned into faith. And once they have faith, then your problem is over. But if they are going to get distracted from developing that faith because of some chronology, what’s the purpose? You know what I am saying? So in other words, those things that deal with more technical chronology or stuff that would be more of an academic problem, put them at later. So once people have developed faith in it, then they can study it. Do you understand?
We chant Hare Krishna first. It’s the highest. But because we are conditioned, we are still distracted by the material energy. But we are unqualified to actually even deal with the material energy in a higher form. Right? But by chanting Hare Krishna, which is the highest, it will bring us to that platform of purity, by which now you can use the Vedic and the Pancaratric mantras that will help establish that proper application. Bhagavata is higher than Pancaratric, it’s only through Bhagavata that we can practice Pancaratric, so in the same way is, you start off with the concepts of philosophy, the principles behind the creation and everything, that basically anybody with a brain can understand. Right? Then, once that faith has been established, then you can get down into the more mundane. Do you understand. That’s a difference between the Vedic and the modern academy. Vedic starts from inside out, you start with what’s the core knowledge, the core principles, that you can teach to a 3-year old. Then, from that, depending upon their level of skill and other things, then you start going into more external detail. So with the technical knowledge, the technical skill comes after actually learning the core fundamentals. Fundamentals don’t mean one-two-three, fundamentals is why one one-two-three works? Does that make sense? Is that okay?
Prabhu: I don’t want to offend the bhakti teachers here, but I think that when we put together the curriculum and we are trying to teach people who don’t have faith, and the 5th canto isn’t something that should be chosen or [Indistinct 55:15]
HH BVPS Maharaja: That’s another thing.
Prabhu: … it’s my understanding from my experience, speaking with people who don’t have faith.
HH BVPS Maharaja: That’s there, but the point is is, we said the key how you deal with it, is you deal that this is how you perceive creation for someone who wants to therefore… Means, in other words, this is how our consciousness got into the material platform, so this is the definition of creation on how you reverse that and take your consciousness out. So therefore then it’s not a problem, like that.
Because actually the 5th canto isn’t the one that deals the most with creation. You know, your second canto and third canto actually technically deal with more. 2nd Canto is just Virat-rupa, that’s your real technical stuff, but it’s so far over people’s heads, they don’t actually catch that. That’s the metaphysics, Means, this is a tree. What is the tree-ness? Where does the potency of tree-ness come from? Means, people just wanna know where did the tree come from. No, where does tree-ness come from? Do you understand? That’s second canto, so actually that’s even more freaky than 5th canto. You know what I am saying? You know, your mother manifests as a mother, because the mother potency of Krishna has been invested there. You know what I am saying? Therefore, through that you can understand, it’s a potency, it’s not the body, right? And then there is a soul there that identifies with it. Therefore we relate to the soul in that relationship, but actually it has nothing to with the soul or the body. The real mother is Krishna, because the mother-ness potency is coming from Him. That’s creation. You know what I am saying? So 5th canto is more stories, just because it gives a gross definition of the universe, therefore we always take that as the prominent. But that has to be based on the previous descriptions of creation, in the 2nd and 3rd cantos. Does that make sense? Is that okay?
Prabhu: Are there any books on Dhanur-veda, or we just have to accept what’s in the Srimad Bhagavatam?
HH BVPS Maharaja: No, there is book… Dhanur Veda, see when you say there is the 14 books of Vedic knowledge, that means a subject. So Mahabharata is describing things that are Dhanur-Veda. Bhagavatam tells things, other Puranas tell things. I thing, Vasistha has written a book on… The Vasistha Dhanur-veda. Artha Shastra has so many things that are connected with Dhanur-Veda. Manu speaks on Dhanur Veda. So in anything that’s dealing with the military science, that is Dhanur Veda, so it’s that collection of knowledge that’s Dhanur-Veda. So there are books on it, and there are other… If you know what Dhanur-veda is, then you can look for it. Does that make sense? Yes? Okay. You had something?
Mataji: You mentioned that God gives the rules and He writes these rules in the scriptures, so that’s His opinion and that’s what we should follow. But the interpretation comes into the picture always, it’s not… The disturbing thing is not when Western academics say things about Indian things, but when we see that difference comes interpreting the same scriptures and different things, like, for example, Madhvacarya saw in the Upanisads, the mahavakya, the “tat tvam asi”, he read it “atat tvam asi” because for him there wasn’t a possibility to read it directly, so he read the text in that way. Shankaracarya read it “tat tvam asi,” so then there appeared the different systems based on the same scripture, and so somehow there is the question of interpretation coming into the picture, that we can’t leave it out, so it’s always through someone that we understand the pictures and always be kind-of, well, a certain understanding. And that is my question, this question of interpretation. There is another thing that fortunately what they all agree upon is the sadhanas, so it’s even, philosophical question is different, but the sadhana is always the same, so …
HH BVPS Maharaja: Why?
Mataji: Because God gave their… [Laughter] Why? Because…
HH BVPS Maharaja: No, no no, I am just saying… Why there is the difference?
Mataji: In the philosophical?
HH BVPS Maharaja: No, no.
Mataji: There is no difference in the sadhana.
HH BVPS Maharaja: I am saying, your question was on why is that?
Mataji: No, the question is that fortunately there is no difference in the sadhana, so we just, from the practical point of view the scriptures say the same thing, so what we are interested in is the same for every school, just that the goal is different, the transcendental goal is different, but they interpret, they read their interpretations from the same scriptures, so that’s my question, that how can we… You can’t live all the interpretation from the scriptures… [Laughter]
HH BVPS Maharaja: Question is: Why is it though in the Vedic community they have one set of basic culture and sadhana, but their interpretation of the Veda, therefore their philosophies, differ?
Mataji: Yes. [Laughter]
Translator: I am asking her question…
HH BVPS Maharaja: But don’t forget her question.
Translator: I am endeavoring to remember…
HH BVPS Maharaja: Don’t bother.
Translator: They are the same…
HH BVPS Maharaja: Means, in the Vedic community there is the same culture, but there is different philosophies, why? See, Pancanga-nyaya means, you start with your theory or your thesis, which can be stated in one sentence. Then you bring up expansions of that which naturally raise the doubt. Then you give your examples that establish your point and clear the doubt. Then you show how there was actually no difference between the two opinions, it was the perspective that you were looking at it from, you couldn’t find the common element, so you show the common element. Then you give the conclusion, which is your thesis in applied form. That’s how you present the philosophy. What you call Jaimini’s theory is a way to look at someone’s work and understand what I just said. Does that make sense?
So the culture is one because Dharma Shastra is one. So the Dharma Shastra is the culture and the lifestyle. So it establishes all the elements of the sadhana and lifestyle and everything. That’s why basically everything is the same for those who follow the Vedic literatures. What’s being missed is that in the 14 books the most important is Mimamsa, which means your interpretation of the verses of the Veda. I think, technically that’s called I think hermeneutics, or… Right? So of the hermeneutics, because there is 6 schools by which you could interpret each verse of the Veda, therefore you get 6 philosophies, is Vedanta… Means, hermeneutics has 6 schools, of the 6 Vedanta is the most important. Krishna says, “I am Vedanta.” And of Vedanta then acintya-bhedabheda-tattva. Does that make sense?
HH BVPS Maharaja: So that’s why there is difference, because they are following different mimamsa. they are following a different school of the hermeneutics.
Mataji: The disturbing thing is the differences within the Vedanta school specifically.
HH BVPS Maharaja: The differences between the Vedanta school? But there is 6 schools of Vedanta, so why would that be a disturbance? You have Brahman, Paramatma, Bhagavan. So Shankara is Brahman. How you say? No, all the other ones, it’s all Bhagavan, only in the mimamsa then Jaimini is Paramatma. So basically if you’d look at it from that standpoint, then all the six schools, five of them deal with material energy, they are not transcendental interpretations, like that. Means, Panini then will be dealing with Paramatma, but bring Paramatma, and then Vedanta will deal with Brahman or Bhagavan. So in Vedanta, Shankara deals with Brahman, the other 5 deal with Bhagavan. So of those 5 that deal with Bhagavan, 4 take different aspects of Bhagavan. The difference between the Lord and His creation, or the commonality of the Lord and His creation. Or how the Lord, there is a common point, there is a difference.
Acintya-bhedabheda-tattva, the 5th, is the combination of all that. Therefore we can speak of any one of the 5 schools because the 5 are absorbed in acintya-bhedabheda-tattva. Therefore we can quote Shankara on things that are common with us. Madhva would never do that, even if it’s common. In fact, he won’t even quote Ramanuja. Do you understand? Because they are just taking a specific viewpoint. But acintya-bhedabheda-tattva is taking the complete viewpoint, but it’s harder to understand, because basically, you can say, it’s the quantum physics of philosophy, it means, two contradictory positions are harmoniously concluded in worship of Krishna. Is that okay? Right?
So the point is is, those various philosophies are there because every living entity who comes into the material world is not actually interested in going back to Godhead. Do you understand? Therefore, there has to be an option that a living entity is following Krishna’s directions, though indirectly and involved in a culture and lifestyle that will allow for the proper understanding to be practiced. You know what I am saying? Means, if in the country everybody was vegetarian, all the different things of the lifestyle that we follow, all the shops were selling dhotis and sarees, even though they were karmis, it would make it a lot easier for us to practice Krishna consciousness. So that’s what the Vedic culture does. It means, even the non-devotees are practicing the same lifestyle, or at least the concepts of the lifestyle that the devotees are following. Therefore you could function in a society quite comfortably. Does that make sense?
Mataji: Yeah, it does.
HH BVPS Maharaja: So that’s how God organizes material life. So it’s not opposed to devotional life. So that’s why there is different schools, because there has to be. Very few are interested in God consciousness.
Mataji: Specifically those people are not so much interested in going back to Godhead, or if they are interested in going back to Godhead, they are not interested in a personal form, that’s why the Mayavada is so popular in India and in the West, so overwhelmingly popular…
HH BVPS Maharaja: The impersonalism is overwhelmingly popular?
Mataji: Yeah, in India and also in the Western.
HH BVPS Maharaja: Because to be able to conceive of transcendence then it’s a little more difficult. Takes faith, it takes… How you say? It has to be revealed. The living entities come into the material world, because they think they are God. So if you can follow Vedic culture and the laws of God and still remain God, then that’s naturally will be popular. To follow the laws of God and you are not God, less popular. And in any case, even though in the West they don’t claim that the living entity is God, basically all the Western religions are impersonal. West, we mean, West of India, because your Islam, your Judaism and Christianity, although they speak of a personal God, if you say, “What’s He look like?” they’ll say,” He has no form, no shape, no smell, no touch, nothing.” So they are impersonalists. Therefore Shankara would be, in one sense more… Because you only get to that at the intellectual point, so therefore the intellectuals, then they would be more comfortable with Shankara, because actually on the intellectual platform even those following these, the Western religions, would be impersonalists anyway. Because if you do go into the personal then then Vedic gives such detail, they wouldn’t be able to handle.
Mataji: Yeah, Buddhism and mayavadis, quite simple…
HH BVPS Maharaja: Yeah, it’s quite simple. [Indistinct 01:16:29] maybe a little too austere. But like that, it will naturally be more popular, because God is a person and how to distinguish that from the mundane. If material is black, then spiritual is white. Easy. But if you are trying to explain that spiritual is white, but actually the black is also spiritual, but because you think it’s not spiritual, that’s why it appears that way. You know what I am saying? God is a nice guy, but because you think He is a nasty, heavy person and any time you don’t follow His rules then He squashes you into… You know, like that, then naturally then how else is He going to appear to you? You know what I am saying? There were, there were Catholics that did think of God as a person, and you could actually have a rasa with Him, and they were burnt at the stake. So therefore Shankara is more popular in the Western world, because Christianity has made very sure that a very detailed personal relationship with God is considered heretical. But you can talk about it emotionally, and it’s fine, developing love for God and serving God, and everyone will agree with that. But as soon as you get down to detail, then out comes the piles of logs and the stake and the rope and then the petrol. Like that. You know how much wood they could have saved if they had gasoline those days? Not sure if the environmental benefit would have been more or less, you saved the trees, but… Well, they could have used crude oil, then they would have avoided the distilleries.
HH BVPS Maharaja: You know, they refine oil and all that. Pros and cons, you know, you have to weight everything. Is that okay? Okay? Yeah?
Mataji: You mentioned before that changing of the iceberg is not so important, because…
HH BVPS Maharaja: Changing of the…?
Mataji: The iceberg.
HH BVPS Maharaja: Iceberg?
Mataji: It’s the same with global warming?
HH BVPS Maharaja: Is it the same with the global warming? You wanna know whether you should invest in the air conditioning or not? Means, it’s like this, the approach to it is, if you go against the laws of God, or the laws or nature, there will be a reaction. So for every action there is a reaction. So just because they reduce emissions, that in one sense gets rid of the problem. But the real problems come because they don’t accept God’s laws. You reduce emissions, it will come out somewhere else. You have a pimple, you put some medicine on it, it comes out somewhere else. You drink lots of water, take blood purifier, you get rid of the pimples. You know what I am saying?
That’s why like even vegetarianism for us is not that important. Prasadam is important. Right? We preach, make someone into a vegetarian, you know, so what? The birds, so many birds are vegetarians. The point is is that we eat what is offered to God, God eats vegetarian, therefore that’s why we are vegetarians. Does that make sense? In other words, it’s not that it’s not addressed, but the only solution to material problems is spiritual, like that. I think I have seen some of the conversations and things where Prabhupada has been going to programs, and he has written down solutions to all the modern problems. I mean, I think I saw one, and it was a list of 30 things. Right? But all the solutions are spiritual, so generally we think, we just… They just kind-of go by. Like that. When it gets down to numbers, then we start to wake up. Does that make sense?
Prabhu: [Long question in Hungarian]
HH BVPS Maharaja: We would do like this. Can you say it in one sentence? Forget the history, forget the background, the moods, the experiences, just one sentence. Then you know, you’ve asked the question, I can give an answer.
Prabhu: It’s difficult…
HH BVPS Maharaja: No, but then that means, you don’t know what you are asking. If you can say it in one sentence, you know what you wanna ask.
Translator: I remember that he was just saying examples of his question…
HH BVPS Maharaja: Yes, but I want, what is the question?
Prabhu: You’ve mentioned that studying and learning is important, so if we take that it is important, then how do things like, things that we’ve been discussing today, like Meru mountain and these things, connect to everyday life?
HH BVPS Maharaja: Everyday life? Erm, every individual has a different daily life. Does that make sense? So what knowledge is going to take to absorb what person 24/7 in Krishna’s service, that’s the aspect you take. You know what I am saying? Mathematicians can think about stuff like this all day. They can’t even dress properly, they are thinking about these things. Ever seen a mathematician dressed properly? [Laughter] No, they can’t. You know, if you’d crunch numbers all day, then you see what happens to your dress code. You know what I am saying? So all these branches are there to address the different conditioned nature of the individual. So it has, it is important to somebody. Meru is doing this, therefore it influences the planets, like that, these planets are in this position, therefore at this time this is the right time to do that activity. Does that make sense?
Somebody wants to get married, so they only do it once in their lifetime – that was a joke [Laughter] So, then you only think about the proper date to get married once – same quote is here [Laughter]. Right? And rest of the time you are thinking about the girl and her hair and her this and her that and… Like that. Right? Okay? So now, but you, to figure out that point, have to ask the astrologer who only thinks about proper times and this and that, and is not thinking about the ladies. But all he is doing is figuring out this person’s birth chart and this person, when they get married and when it’s the proper time for this festival or that festival, that’s all they do. Does that make sense? So that’s how they keep themselves absorbed. Right? And that’s how it applies in your life. Does that make sense?
Prabhu: I came up with this question, because when I was referring to this to other devotees, sometimes I got a reply saying that, “Well, there have been Paramahamsas, they didn’t know anything about the details of this, they didn’t even know how to read, still they perfected themselves.”
HH BVPS Maharaja: Yes, because they were, like I said, absorbed in something totally about Krishna. So they would just be chanting the Holy Name. Or the gopis, they were just Krishna’s beauty and qualities. So that’s what you are trying to do. So if your brain, you know, takes his pleasure from crunching numbers, then God has created astronomy. Does that make sense?
So, yes, but are you one of those paramahamsas? Is the person that told you that point a paramahamsa? Are the friends of that person who told you the point, paramahamsas?
Prabhu: Maybe, but I think they are not.
HH BVPS Maharaja: Okay, just being politically correct. [Laughter] Does anybody in your daily interactive social life, are they paramahamsas?
Prabhu: I don’t think so.
HH BVPS Maharaja: Okay. So then where would that point apply that your friend told you?
HH BVPS Maharaja: Then?
Prabhu: So it is my understanding already that because we are not paramahamsas and we cannot constantly chant the holy name, then we can also do these things.
HH BVPS Maharaja: Yes. [Laughter] That’s the point. You should be a paramahamsa, that’s the standard. But if you can’t do that, then you connect yourself, you maintain as much of your paramahamsa status as you can, and the balance then you engage through the Vedic knowledge and activities. Does that make sense? Okay?
Prabhu: I’m sorry I [indistinct 01:33:40] your lecture, but I didn’t get the order of things in the Bhagavata, that you were saying that there are two kinds of order, according to the Western one is sambandha-abhideya-prayojana, and the other one is the Vedic, between sambandha-prayojana-abhideya, and prayojana again, I didn’t get that.
HH BVPS Maharaja: Oh. No it’s wasn’t about the Western and Vedic, they are both Vedic. What I was… The point was being made is that, see this is, you are going here that there is two different perspectives. One of the intelligence, one of the mind. The intelligence goes sambandha-abhideya-prayojana, because it’t the logical order. But the mind has its own logic, the mind is attraction and repulsion, so only when it’s attracted, there is activity. So therefore the mind has to go from thinking about something to being attached to that thing, then only it will work. So therefore you go sambandha-prayojana, and then abhideya, that’s thinking-feeling-willing. Does that make sense? You think about something, sambandha, means, you are thinking about your relationship with it. Feeling, “I am attached to it, I got to have it,” that’s prayojana. Then there’ll be abhideya, there will be the activity. And then that activity then will give you the result, again it goes back to prayojana, because abhideya always gives prayojana. So… Does that make sense?
So what we were meaning there is that in the modern academy, since intelligence is the platform, not practical application, therefore a chronological, logical order of things makes more sense. While the practical application might change the order of things and everything. Does that make sense? So that’s why sometimes… That’s why, not sometimes, but that’s why the presentations in the Vedic literatures sometimes don’t make sense to the modern academics, because it doesn’t appear to be chronologically presented. But it’s the chronology of application, not the chronology of the theory. Yeah? Is that okay? Or, they’ll see a list of the chronology of the theory, then they’ll see another list of the chronology of the application, then they’ll say, the Vedic literature is contradictory, which is right. You know what I am saying? So therefore they will see sambandha, abhideya, prayojana and go, “Okay, that’s logical, but then over here it says, sambandha, prayojana, abhideya, it’s a contradiction, so which one is right?” In other words, one has to be right, and one has to be wrong. But they are both right. One is for understanding it, the other is for applying it. So that’s why we were saying, there is no actual contradiction in any of the Vedic literatures, it depends upon, basically what your application is.
Manu gives this point, he says that in following the rules that some scriptures say the yajna is done before the sunrise, some say at sunrise, some say after sunrise. But they are all correct. If yajna is your main sadhana, you do it before the surise, because your main sadhana always goes before sunrise. You know what I am saying? But if it’s not your main sadhana, then it may be done at sunrise or after sunrise. Like for us, we worship the Deity, our Pancaratra for us is more important than the Vedic. So we do the Deity worship first, and as a conclusion to Deity worship, then you can do a yajna. Does that make sense? So in other words, if you want… So, Mangala-aratik is going to be there, because that’s our important sadhana. Now, if you are not worshiping the Deity yourself, someone else is, then after Mangala-aratik, in other words, at sunrise, you could do the yajna. But if you are worshiping the Deity, then you go to Mangala-aratik before sunrise, do the Deity worship at sunrise and do the yajna after surise. Does that make sense? But people who just do yajna as their sadhana, they are doing it before surise. So all are correct, it’s just the matter of the application. The theory is is that you have a sadhana that is geared towards gaining the result that you want to get. Right? So depending upon what is your goal, you are going to adjust your sadhana in the most efficient way according to the acaryas in your line how to do that. Is that okay? Yeah, okay.
Another point on your question, that was brought up by this one. Means, knowledge about Krishna is unlimited, so that means it goes from the lowest levels of material creation up to the top levels of the spiritual creation. So depending upon where you want to be in that creation, you will have to interpret the Vedic knowledge to get you there. And that interpretation is given by the acaryas. You know what I am saying? Like that. So that’s why those that wanna go to Vaikuntha and depending upon what siddhi they want in Vaikuntha, then they have their school.
Mataji: The goal is there first?
HH BVPS Maharaja: Yeah, the goal… As we said. You have “I am servant of God,” that’s sambandha. “I want to serve God in this capacity,” therefore “I have this sadhana.” In other words, sambandha-prayojana-abhideya. That’s where you get this modern self-help technique of “start from the goal and work back,” which is almost a good idea. But unless you know what the field is and what the sambandha is, how do you know how to get the sambandha to that goal? Who am I? What do I got? What can I get with this? And so of what I can get, which one do I want? Then I work back from there, from where I am now, what’s the process to get to wherever I go? That would be a more complete self-help approach. Do you understand? That’s what we were saying. Because they lack the Vedic perspective, they are intelligent, they watch material energy, they see patterns, they catch some very important things. What they’ve caught is an aspect of the Vedic knowledge, but because theyy’ve approached it from pratyaksha, or observation, rather than shabda, their perspective is not complete. And because of that it falls short, and they work in a few situations, but in a more broad situation it starts to fall apart. Therefore someone else taking up the observation from that point, seeing the fault, observes other patterns, then fills that in, but generally dropping the previous one.
Therefore the eternal Western academic dilemma: Do you take the knowledge and shoehorn it and stuff it into the kids head? Or do you with all kinds of niceties draw out this unlimited information that’s stored within the living entity? And both schools have been fighting since a long time, and they are still fighting today, I got one right here. Here, “Education versus demagogy.” Because it’s not seen that the actual process is, you have to have both, you need both. It would be like this, here, the principle is, unless you put something in, how do you draw anything out? Here is the two schools, taken from a different perspective. I have a glass. One school says, “I am going to put that water in that glass and having put it there, I am never gonna take it out.” Useless. The other one is is, “There is this empty glass, I am going to pull out unlimited amounts of water by my inspiration and nice talking.” Also not well thought-out. Vedic concept is, “I put water in the glass, therefore I can pour water out of the glass.” You know what I am saying? So that’s the point, if we don’t put some knowledge in, there is nothing to work with that therefore then you can through contemplation multiply it. How many times, I don’t know over here, but in America, in 7th grade, that’s when they start bombarding you with this stuff. Sit all the kids down in the circle and then try to generate some intellectual thought patterns, you know, like this. “Okay, you have a bomb-shelter, yeah, you have an óvóhely [Laughter]. So this bomb-shelter will hold 7 people, but there are 15 people who want to get into your bomb-shelter. Whom will you pick? Right? You have a doctor, you have a lawyer, you have a Playboy Bunny, you have a 5-star chef, you have your best friend, you have your mother-in-law, okay, that’s obvious… [Laughter] You know what I am saying? So whom are you gonna pick? So then they are thinking, they are going to generate all this intellectual activity in the kids. Nice concept, but do they ever teach them on what basis would you even make a decision? How to think through, how to analyze? Never, because they think just by being nice you are going to make it manifest. Right? Knowledge is there, but you have to have a medium through which to show it. Right?
The boy and girl are naturally attracted to each other, but in drawing that out, what do you use? You have to use something, some flowers or a walk in the park, or a gift… Do you understand? Something has to be there to generate it from. Right? So therefore without some body of knowledge, how are you going to generate something and multiply it? So in other words, one is saying, “I will take money, I will invest it, but I won’t bother about any profit or anything like that, and because I have invested it, everything is perfect.” And the other one is, “Without any capital I am going to generate funds.” No. But the intelligent man takes capital, invests it, then generates funds. Does that make sense? I have some gold, I can make gold ornaments. So it’s like that. I have vegetables, I can make preparations. So abhideya always means, there has to be some medium through which it’s expressed, that’s your sambandha, and some goal you want to get. So you are telling the kids, “Think.” But you have given them no field, no sambandha and no prayojana. How are they supposed to think? So, that’s the problem in approaches that are complete. So someone sees, “Oh, I can’t do anything, because there is no sambandha.” So then they’ll make a whole philosophy out of sambandha. Or someone else goes, “Well, because there is no goal, then no one knows what they are supposed to do. I’ll make a whole philosophy out of prayojana.” But the whole concept has to be sambandha, abhideya and prayojana, knowing their balance, knowing their connection, then it works. Does that make sense?
Mataji: Yes. So just one thing that while the Western interpretations are subjective, the Vedic interpretations are adjusted to the individual needs, instead of being subjective, they are fitting the individual?
HH BVPS Maharaja: Yeah. Means, modern has to be subjective, because you are not counting God who is objective. Vedic it’s, the basis is objective, but it must be applied to the individual, so it must have that subjective element to it. Otherwise it’s not practical. Let us say this, okay, let us take the academic approach to just interacting with the girl. So if we are going to be subjective, then this girl is the One. Right? But if we are actually objective, it could be this one, but it could be some others, so we should keep our options open. Will that relationship get anywhere? Never. You know what I am saying? So because the modern academy isn’t focused on actually generating tangible results, other than getting paid, then therefore it doesn’t actually have any meaning, their objective platform. Because if you are really objective, they could be totally wrong. Leakey could be absolutely wrong. It could be true that there was modern man 40 million years ago. I’ve seen people today that look like Neanderthal men, I’ve seen them, in the flesh. [Laughter] They are alive, walking around today, they are in our midst [Laughter], aliens from the previous age. You know what I am saying? So that was always there. So it’s, it’s… you know.
What’s the time?
HH BVPS Maharaja: 3:20? What’s your question? One sentence.
Prabhu: What’s the connection between vaidhi and raganuga-bhakti and what’s the common and the difference between their sadhana?
HH BVPS Maharaja: Ha. What’s the difference in their sadhana? Nothing. Vaidhi means, you are following it because the rules should be followed. Raganuga means, you are following because you want to follow it. Right? Vaidhi is “This is the time to cook for Krishna”, raganuga is “I like to cook for Krishna.” Prabhupada gives that example. Vaidhi is “I should go to Mangala-aratik, it’s the Brahma-muhurta, the best time of the day, spiritual activities,” like that. Raganuga is “I like going to Mangala-arati, I wanna see the Deities, I wanna sing.” So that’s the example, so the idea is when basically the major portion of your activities is raga, then it’s called raga-marga. Does that make sense? That’s your general definition. So we’ll end here. Jaya-ho.
Srila Prabhupada ki jaya! Samaveta-bhakta-vrinda ki jaya! Jaya Nitai-Gaura-premanande Hari Haribol!
Prabhu: His Holiness Bhaktividya Purna Maharaja ki jaya!