This course is part of Sastra-Caksus, Year 1 and consists of 91 lectures, available on:
Given in Bhaktivedanta Academy, Sridham Mayapur, September 2010-April 2011
The following are lecture notes briefly delineating its contents.
- The ultimate point is to recognize the Supreme Personality of Godhead as a person and to act in devotional service.
- We want to please the Lord, the service itself is to please the Lord – nishkama.
- More emphasis on service itself, then we please the Lord – sakama.
- First chapters show how to connect all activities to the Lord.
- Pure devotional service means that the material platform is not the consideration.
- Pure unalloyed – one does not even gain anything for oneself on the spiritual platform.
- Connection to the Lord is the ground at all stages of spiritual development.
- 9:00 When preaching to people, first we connect their field to the Lord, then bring in pure devotional service, only then explain fine-tuning devotional service with jnana.
- Raganuga is based on vaidhi, and vaidhi should be consistent with our philosophy.
- In other religions, the consistency between lifestyle and philosophy is usually only there for the priests. But in the Vedic culture it is there for everyone.
- All acts should be done in connection with the Supreme Lord, independent on one’s level of advancement.
- Most people’s idea of spiritual experience does not get past prana-maya
- Even if we think we are the subject and enjoyer, we still have to please another person, please the object to get the result we want. The sooner we understand that, the sooner life becomes so much easier.
- Engaging all of our attachments in Krishna’s service – what’s fine is the connection, what’s not fine is what is not yet connected.
- Lord has written the Vedanta-sutra, and it is meant for understanding Him. Impersonalists take it as their monopoly, but their logic at one point becomes rhetoric only.
- Anything short of Vedanta will always have fallacious aspects of logic, and so they’ll always fail, and the Vedanta will triumph. But if you don’t have the personal understanding of Vedanta, also your logic will not be complete enough.
- 38:00 The wording of the thesis, the explanation, the examples and removing of doubts and misgivings will always be according to the audience.
- Impersonalists are the closest to applying the logic of Vedanta.
- 45:00 There always have to be a connection between verses, chapters, books. In every Veda, every scripture devotional service is the objective.
- All the scriptures are meant for understanding the Lord, but they are meant for a particular audience, therefore, for example, in Mahabharata, there are 25,000 verses on Pandavas and 75,000 on other things, to make it attractive for particular people.
- Mahabharata as retold in the 1st canto of Srimad Bhagavatam all is connected to the Lord.
- We have to be very careful not taking example as a definition.
- Rhetoric is we have one thing, another person has another. Logic is that the argument of the other person is included in ours.
- Devotees discussing varnashrama are taking half of vaishya – farming and cow protection. They don’t even discuss banking and trade, the other half of vaishyas, they don’t discuss brahmanas, kshatriyas and shudras, and ashrama is never discussed at all.
- Taking one activity as all in all is the mode of ignorance.
- Next year – In analysis of the Gita we will use the logic of Vedanta – main philosophycal points and details, in a logical order.
- NOD will be studied according to the works of the Acaryas.
- Isopanishad by the Tattva-sutras.