Direct Your Activities To The Lord

Direct Your Activities To The Lord

THE FOLLOWING LECTURE ON SRIMAD-BHAGAVATAM, FIRST CANTO, CHAPTER FIVE, “NARADA’S INSTRUCTIONS ON SRIMAD-BHAGAVATAM FOR VYASADEVA”, TEXT 29, WAS GIVEN BY HIS HOLINESS BHAKTI CHARU SWAMI ON 25 DECEMBER 2006 IN ISKCON UJJAIN, INDIA.

Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya
Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya
Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya

Srimad Bhagavatam. So today we are going to discuss the fifth chapter. This chapter is entitled as “Narada’s Instructions On Srimad-Bhagavatam For Vyasadeva.”

Suta Gosvami said:
Thus the sage amongst the gods [Narada], comfortably seated and apparently smiling, addressed the rishi amongst the brahmanas [Vyasadeva]. [SB 1.5.1]

Devarishi Narada and Viprarishi Vyasa or Brahmarishi Vyasadeva: Narada Muni is the sage amongst the demigods and Vyasadeva is described as the sage among the brahmanas.

Addressing Vyasadeva, the son of Parasara, Narada inquired: Are you satisfied by identifying with the body or the mind as objects of self-realization? [SB 1.5.2]

So previously what Vyasadeva had done was dharma, artha, kama and moksha. He went up to liberation but did not describe about the transcendental loving service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. And that is why Vyasadeva was not feeling satisfied in his heart. And Narada Muni identified that the endeavour of Vyasadeva was simply for the sake of the body or the mind. It was not pertaining to the soul’s satisfaction, soul’s contentment, soul’s upliftment and soul’s deliverance. That’s why he pointed out that Vyasadeva’s heart was not satisfied.

It was actually Krishna’s arrangement. Krishna wanted to point out that the ultimate consideration is Krishna consciousness. All the other things that had been described in Vedas were simply for the sake of material prosperity. Either material prosperity or liberation; dharma, artha, kama and moksha. They are known as chatur varga: the four principles or the four vargas, four divisions of the Vedic objectives.

Your inquiries were full and your studies were also well fulfilled, and there is no doubt that you have prepared a great and wonderful work, the Mahabharata, which is full of all kinds of Vedic sequences elaborately explained. [SB 1.5.3]

So Narada Muni is instructing Vyasadeva in this way.
You have fully delineated the subject of impersonal Brahman as well as the knowledge derived therefrom. Why should you be despondent in spite of all this, thinking that you are undone, my dear prabhu? [SB 1.5.4]
Sri Vyasadeva said: All you have said about me is perfectly correct. Despite all this, I am not pacified. I therefore question you about the root cause of my dissatisfaction, for you are a man of unlimited knowledge due to your being the offspring of one [Brahma] who is self-born [without mundane father and mother]. [SB 1.5.5]

My lord! Everything that is mysterious is known to you because you worship the creator and destroyer of the material world and the maintainer of the spiritual world, the original Personality of Godhead, who is transcendental to the three modes of material nature. [SB 1.5.6]

Like the sun, Your Goodness can travel everywhere in the three worlds, and like the air you can penetrate the internal region of everyone. As such, you are as good as the all-pervasive Supersoul. Please, therefore, find out the deficiency in me, despite my being absorbed in transcendence under disciplinary regulations and vows. [SB 1.5.7]

Vyasadeva was dissatisfied. He, after compiling, after dividing the Vedas into four branches – Rig, Sama, Yajura and Atharva – and then after compiling the Puranas and other scriptures, and then finally he compiled Mahabharata for the general population. Why did Vyasadeva consider doing that, dividing the Vedas and simplifying the Vedas in this way? Why did he do that? Who can answer this question? Yes? [devotee: inaudible] Yeah, because Vyasadeva could see that Kali yuga was coming and in the age of Kali people will become very unqualified for spiritual development. Their span of their life will be reduced considerably, they will be lazy, they’ll not be so intelligent, their memory will be short and on the top of everything they will be constantly troubled by various calamities of the material nature. Therefore Vyasadeva considered the need to simplify the Vedas for the people of this age of Kali and he did that very systematically. He did that, as I just mentioned, but still he felt that his job was not complete. He felt that his job, what he embarked upon, was not fully completed. And when he was feeling such despondency and such discontentment in his heart, at that time Narada Muni appeared to him and then Narada Muni started to instruct, Narada Muni told him that, “What you have done is pertaining to the body and the mind, welfare of the body and the mind. But do you think that is the ultimate goal of spiritual practice? That’s the ultimate goal of Vedas? That’s the ultimate objective of the Vedas?”  No. He pointed that out and Vyasadeva here is admitting that, “Yes, I haven’t properly done that. Now you know you are perfectly situated in knowledge. You know what am I lacking? Where is my deficiency? Where did I fail? So, please tell me what I need to do?”

Then Narada Muni started to instruct him so Narada Muni is now going straight to the point. He is saying that, “You have not actually broadcast the sublime and spotless glories of the Personality of Godhead. You have described different aspects of the Vedas, simplified the Vedic teachings, but the actual purpose of the Vedas haven’t been revealed by you.”
What is the actual purpose of the Vedas? The word veda means knowledge. Now what is the ultimate knowledge? What is the actual objective of the knowledge? The real purpose of knowledge is to understand Krishna, The Supreme Personality of Godhead. That is the real purpose of knowledge, vedais ca sarvair aham eva vedyo. [Bg 15.15]

Until and unless we recognize the Supreme Personality of Godhead, unless and until we understand Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, through the instructions of the Vedas it is simply a waste of time. All that we are doing, pursuing the Vedic literature, practicing the Vedic principles and processes will be simply a waste of time

dharmah svanushthitah pumsam
vishvaksena-kathasu yah
notpadayed yadi ratim
srama eva hi kevalam
[SB 1.2.8]

The performance of religious activities or pursuance of the Vedic practices, if it does not generate attachment to the lotus feet of Krishna, does not increase or does not generate the desire to hear the glories of Supreme Personality of Godhead, vishvaksena-kathasu yah notpadayed yadi ratim, rati (attachment, taste) if we don’t develop that, srama eva hi kevalam, it’s simply a waste of time.

So, Narada Muni again is establishing that point, that the purpose of studying the Vedas is simply to understand Krishna and develop our attachment to His lotus feet and therefore Narada Muni is saying, “You have not actually broadcast the sublime and spotless glories of the Personality of Godhead. That philosophy which does not satisfy the transcendental senses of the Lord is considered worthless.  Although, great sage, you have already described four principles beginning with religious performances, you have not described the glories of the Supreme Personality, Vasudeva. You have broadly described the four principles beginning with religious performances.”

What are they? Dharma, artha, kama, and moksha: religious practices, developing pious activities (artha), fulfilment of material desires (kama), and finally liberation. The first three aspects are pertaining to enjoyment in the material nature. And then when one realises that this material nature is a place of suffering, then they want to get out of the material nature, moksha. Dharma, artha, kama are pertaining to material enjoyment and then when one realises that this place is full of suffering, there is no enjoyment, all the endeavours for enjoyment are simply going to culminate into suffering, then they say, “Well, let’s get out of here” (moksha).

But the real thing is devotional service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This has been pointed out, that everyone is actually searching for ananda. Jivas are always endeavouring for joy. So everyone is constantly trying to experience that joy or enjoying. Everyone is trying to enjoy. Whatever he does is to enjoy, with an objective to enjoy. But there is no enjoyment in the material nature. He may try but then he considers, then he realises that this place is full of suffering. So then he thinks to become free from suffering will be enjoyment. To become free from suffering is enjoyment and therefore he thinks that if he can get out of this material nature then he will enjoy. Because if he gets out of this place of suffering, then at least he will be free from suffering and that will be enjoyment.

But the real enjoyment is being engaged in the devotional service of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. That is the real enjoyment. And the Vedas ultimately point that out, that real enjoyment is in devotional service. We don’t have to stop anything. All these endeavours are simply for stopping the material suffering. Stop breathing, stop eating, stop sleeping, stop the activities of the senses. Less intelligent people think that that is going to give them enjoyment. That is a kind of enjoyment, but what kind of enjoyment is that? That enjoyment is, say you are not allowed to breathe for sometime, or stop your nose and mouth. Block your nose and mouth. You can’t breathe, right? How will you feel? It will be suffocating and then you are allowed to breathe. And it will be such a wonderful experience. “Oh, how wonderful it is to breathe!”

In Chaitanya Charitamrita the material enjoyment has been compared to a person, he is drowned in water. A person is put into water, dumped into the water. So he is struggling to breathe, he is dying. And then just for a moment he is pulled out of the water and he is allowed to just take one breathe. And then again he is dumped into the water. So material nature is like that. We are suffering and for a moment we get a little relief from the suffering and you will feel, “Oh! How wonderful it is!” But actually we want joy. There is a thing called joy. There is ananda. Relief from suffering is not joy. To become submerged in that relationship with the Lord will lead us to that enjoyment, which is the real source of joy. And that the most important information that the Vedas are providing. Vedas are giving us this information: yes, there is a thing called joy. There is anandam and anandam is available. There is a world that is full of ananda, that is full of ananda, full of joy. So come and experience that. And the way to do it is by developing our loving relationship with the Supreme Personality of Godhead.

“Those words which do not describe the glories of the Lord, who alone can sanctify the atmosphere of the whole universe, are considered by saintly person to be like unto a place of pilgrimage for crows.” [Translation SB 1.5.10] Vayasam tirtham, the pilgrimage of crows. What are the pilgrimage of the crows? The place that is full of dirty things. Crows like to eat only dirty things, but the swans they live in a very, very serene and beautiful place away from dirt. So there are two types of people: crows and swans. The saintly personalities are compared to a swan and the materialistic personalities are considered to be like the crows.
In Ujjain we don’t see so many crows. That’s a good sign. [Laughter] But if you go to the big cities, full of crows, Calcutta, full of crows. And you can see, like in Calcutta there are some pious people. In the morning they go and they scatter grains for the birds and the pigeons will come and take them. But there are dustbins where all the garbage is kept in the roadside and all the crows gather there in the morning and eat all kinds of garbage.
So here Narada Muni is describing, it’s a beautiful verse:

na yad vacas citra-padam harer yaso
jagat-pavitram pragrinita karhicit
tad vayasam tirtham usanti manasa
na yatra hamsa niramanty usik-kshayah
[SB 1.5.10]

Those words which do not describe the glories of the Lord, who alone can sanctify the atmosphere of the whole universe – who can sanctify the atmosphere of the whole universe? How many of you can answer this question? Okay, Archana? [devotee: inaudible] No, here it has been described the Supreme Personality of Godhead, harer yaso. “Those words which do not describe the glories of the Lord, who alone can sanctify the atmosphere of the whole universe, are considered by saintly persons to be like unto a place of pilgrimage for crows. Since the all-perfect persons are inhabitants of the transcendental abode, they do not derive any pleasure there.”

tad-vag-visargo janatagha-viplavo

yasmin prati-slokam abaddhavaty api

namany anantasya yaso ‘nkitani yat

srinvanti gayanti grinanti sadhavah

[SB 1.5.11]

[Translation:] On the other hand, that literature which is full of descriptions of the transcendental glories of the name, fame, forms, pastimes, etc., of the unlimited Supreme Lord is a different creation, full of transcendental words directed toward bringing about a revolution in the impious lives of this world’s misdirected civilization. Such transcendental literatures, even though imperfectly composed, are heard, sung and accepted by purified men who are thoroughly honest.

So the words about the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the descriptions about the Supreme Personality of Godhead can cause a revolution in the lives of the impious people of this degraded age of Kali. What are those? They are Srila Prabhupada’s books. Isn’t it causing a revolution? It’s causing a revolution. Revolution means turning the wind in the other direction. Things are moving in this direction. What does the revolution mean? Moving to the other direction. The world is moving towards the materialistic direction. The people are degrading. Now Prabhupada books are actually bringing people to the right path and uplifting them towards spiritual enlightenment. That is what has been described here: the literature which is full of descriptions of the transcendental glories of the name, fame, forms, pastimes, etc., of the unlimited Supreme Lord is a different creation, full of transcendental words directed toward bringing about a revolution in the impious lives of this world’s misdirected civilisation.

So Narada Muni is pointing out; what is the purpose of Vedas? The purpose of the Vedas is to describe the glory of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Because when we get to hear the glories of the Lord then we become aware of His wonderful qualities and we develop natural attachment to His lotus feet.

Knowledge of self-realization, even though free from all material affinity, does not look well if devoid of a conception of the Infallible [God]. [SB 1.5.12] So knowledge of even self-realization, even though free from all material affinity, even self- realization if it is without the conception of God, even if it is a self-realization without developing a  relationship with the Supreme Personality of Godhead is actually… does not look well. It is not proper. It is not right, which means that there is no possibility of self-realization without developing a relationship with the Lord. One may try to endeavour. They do that. The jnanis try to do that through austerities and penances. The yogis try to do it through meditation, but does it bear the fruit? No, because unless and until it is linked with the Supreme Personality of Godhead liberation is not possible, self-realization is not possible.  Rather, the self-realization will be misleading, give a misconception of the self. How will it give a misconception of the self? Because, what is the identity of the self? What is the actual identity of the self? Pradeep, the actual identity of the self? [devotee: we are the soul] Yeah, but what is that? [devotee: we are servant of Krishna] Yeah, that’s it. The soul is a servant, the actual identity of the self or the soul is that it is a servant of Krishna. He is a servant if Krishna.
Now if the realization of the self is without Krishna, will it be realization? No. How will he recognise that he is the servant of the Lord if there is no understanding of the Lord? That’s why Narada Muni is pointing out that even self-realization without the concept of the Supreme Personality of Godhead is a failure. It is imperfect. It is incorrect. It will never bear the appropriate result. Then he is pointing out, what then is the use of – even if self-realization without understanding of the Supreme Personality of Godhead is a misconception, is a misunderstanding – then what to speak of fruitive activities which are naturally painful from the very beginning?  Fruitive activities, the desire to acquire piety in order to enjoy in the material nature through the practices of austerities and penances and other activities, what is use of that? Because from the very beginning it is painful and transient by nature.

What, then, is the use of fruitive activities, which are naturally painful from the very beginning and transient by nature, if they are not utilized for the devotional service of the Lord? [SB 1.5.12]

Now what’s difference between fruitive activity and devotional service? How many of you can answer this question? What’s the difference between fruitive activity and devotional service? Raise your hands. How many of you can answer that? Okay, Nitaichandra? [devotee: inaudible] Very good. The difference between fruitive activity and devotional service is that fruitive activities are for the enjoyment of individual, whereas devotional service is for the pleasure of the Lord. The activities are there, but if it is for our sake, it is fruitive activity. The same action if it is directed towards pleasing the Lord then that becomes devotional service. So there is no need to stop activities. Only thing is those activities must be rendered for the sake of the pleasure of the Lord.

O Vyasadeva, your vision is completely perfect. Your good fame is spotless. You are firm in vow and situated in truthfulness. And thus you can think of the pastimes of the Lord in trance for the liberation of the people in general from all material bondage. [SB 1.5.13]

So Narada Muni instructed Vyasadeva to meditate upon the Lord and pursuit the Lord in trance and describe His glory.  Whatever you desire to describe that is separate in vision from the Lord simply reacts, with different forms, names and results, to agitate the mind as the wind agitates a boat which has no resting place. [SB 1.5.14]

So if your activities, if your endeavours are not for the sake of pleasing the Lord, then it will simply create disturbance to the mind as the wind agitates a boat that doesn’t have any resting place.  The people in general are naturally inclined to enjoy. It is another very important point that Narada Muni is making: “People in general are naturally inclined to enjoy and you have encouraged them in that way in the name of religion.” [Translation SB 1.5.15]  People in general are automatically inclined to enjoy and you are provoking them in the name of religion to enjoy, to get into sense gratification. See what a damage you are going to cause by what you have done. “This is verily condemned and is quite unreasonable. Because they are guided under your instructions, they will accept such activities in the name of religion and will hardly care for prohibitions.”

The Supreme Lord is unlimited. Only a very expert personality, retired from the activities of material happiness, deserves to understand this knowledge of spiritual values. Therefore those who are not so well situated, due to material attachment, should be shown the ways of transcendental realization, by Your Goodness, through descriptions of the transcendental activities of the Supreme Lord. [SB 1.5.16]

One who has forsaken his material occupations to engage in the devotional service of the Lord may sometimes fall down while in an immature stage, yet there is no danger of his being unsuccessful. On the other hand, a non-devotee, though fully engaged in occupational duties, does not gain anything. [SB 1.5.17]

So in short what this verse is saying? What this verse is saying, Bimal Krishna, this particular text? [devotee: inaudible] Yeah. How? That while at a neophyte stage, even if he falls down still he won’t be unsuccessful. A devotee, even if he falls down, still he will be successful. Whereas a non-devotee, no matter how expertly he is performing his practices, is a waste of time. He will not achieve anything. He will not achieve anything means his achievement will only be temporary and transient. It will be therefore a short while and then it disappears.

Persons who are actually intelligent and philosophically inclined should endeavour only for that purposeful end which is not obtainable even by wandering from the topmost planet [Brahmaloka] down to the lowest planet [Patala]. As far as happiness derived from sense enjoyment is concerned, it can be obtained automatically in course of time, just as in course of time we obtain miseries even though we do not desire them. [SB 1.5.18]

In course of time miseries come. Who wants misery? But still misery comes. Similarly, in course of time happiness also will come, even if we don’t make any endeavour. There is no need to make a separate endeavour for happiness. It will come and miseries also will come. But what should be our objective? To become situated in the transcendental devotional service of the Lord and thus be transcendental to the miseries and happiness of this material nature.

My dear Vyasa, even though a devotee of Lord Krishna sometimes falls down somehow or other, he certainly does not undergo material existence like others [fruitive workers, etc.] because a person who has once relished the taste of the lotus feet of the Lord can do nothing but remember that ecstasy again and again. [SB 1.5.19]

Okay, somebody leaves Krishna consciousness but when he is away from Krishna consciousness what will happen to him? He’ll keep on thinking, “Oh, how wonderful it was when I was devotee, when I was in ISKCON!” Especially when he is suffering so much in the material nature. And as a result of that, eventually he’ll come back.

The Supreme Lord Personality of Godhead is Himself this cosmos, and still He is aloof from it. From Him only has this cosmic manifestation emanated, in Him it rests, and unto Him it enters after annihilation. Your good self knows all about this. I have given only a synopsis. [SB 1.5.20]
Your Goodness has perfect vision. You yourself can know the Supersoul Personality of Godhead because you are present as the plenary portion of the Lord. Although you are birthless, you have appeared on this earth for the well-being of all people. [SB 1.5.21]

[altar curtains close] Jaya Sri Sri Radha Madana Mohana ki jaya! Jaya Sri Sri Krishna Balarama ki jaya! Jaya Sri Sri Gaura Nitai ki jaya!

So Narada Muni now is instructing Vyasadeva: “Your Goodness has perfect vision. You yourself can know the Supersoul Personality of Godhead because you are present as the plenary portion of the Lord.” So Narada Muni is pointing out that Vyasadeva is a saktyavesha incarnation of the Lord saying, “You are a plenary portion, you are an incarnation of the Lord. Although you are birthless, you have appeared on this earth for the well-being of all people. Please, therefore, describe the transcendental pastimes of the Supreme Personality of Godhead Sri Krishna more vividly.”

Learned circles have positively concluded that the infallible purpose of the advancement of knowledge, namely austerities, study of the Vedas, sacrifice, chanting of hymns and charity, culminates in the transcendental descriptions of the Lord, who is defined in choice poetry. [SB 1.5.22]

O muni, in the last millennium I was born as the son of a certain maidservant engaged in the service of brahman?as who were following the principles of Vedanta. When they were living together during the four months of the rainy season, I was engaged in their personal service. [SB 1.5.23]

So now Narada Muni is describing how he became a devotee of the Lord. So now he is going back to his previous life. In his previous life Narada Muni was the son of a maidservant and his mother was engaged in serving some saintly personalities who settled at that place for a short while for the four months of Chaturmasa. During these four months of two months of rainy season and two months of autumn the saintly people generally don’t travel. So that’s why at that time they stay at one place. And Narada Muni’s mother was serving them and Narada Muni, as a little boy, was blessed with their association.

Although they were impartial by nature, those followers of the Vedanta blessed me with their causeless mercy. As far as I was concerned, I was self-controlled and had no attachment for sports, even though I was a boy. In addition, I was not naughty, and I did not speak more than required. [SB 1.5.24]

So Narada Muni is describing that how he received the mercy and he also admitted that he was very serious. Even as a boy he was not interested in frivolous sports. He was very serious. He was not naughty and did not speak more than required. He was not talkative. Children are generally frivolous. They talk all kinds of nonsense, they are all interested in sports and they are naughty. But Narada Muni was not like that. Narada Muni was saying that he was not attached to sports. But nowadays we are seeing how the world has become attached to sports. Even old people in their death bed are watching the TV, the match between Australia and India, cricket match or World Cup football. So we can see how misdirected the civilisation has become, but now we have to revolutionize it. We have to turn the wind in the opposite direction. The children play, that’s understandable. But old people, they are wasting their time in frivolous games.

There is a thing called bowling. Old people, especially in England they play that. They roll a ball and they see how close one can come to the mark. Old people, retired people have nothing to do, so they are just playing balls. They are waiting for death. But still they do not want to get into Krishna consciousness. And it is not possible, because throughout their lives they have developed all these bad habits. So how can they rectify when they are old? At old age the rectification is very, very difficult. It is impossible practically. Of course, Krishna consciousness is all purifying. Even an old man can become Krishna conscious and rectify himself of his bad habits, but he has to make endeavour. Otherwise there is no hope. When one is young, one learns quickly. But when one becomes old it’s very difficult to give up the bad habits.

I remember, in America, I came across one man he had some kind of an operation. Something happened, like there is a hole, they had the make a hole in his throat, and he smoked cigarettes! [laughter] He had a hole in his throat, so crazy! I mean, he can’t speak because he, something, I don’t know actually what was the thing. The man is active but still he is smoking. He had a hole in the throat. He can’t speak because the vocal cord it doesn’t react. He speaks with sign language. So that’s how difficult is to give up these bad habits.

[Translation SB 1.5.25:] “Once only, by their permission, I took the remnants of their food, and by so doing all my sins were at once eradicated.” So this is the potency of Maha Prasada. When we take the remnants from a pure devotee, then we become purified of all our sinful reactions, just by taking their prasada. “Thus being engaged, I became purified in heart, and at that time the very nature of the transcendentalist became attractive to me.”

So this is the potency of Maha Prasada. When we take the remnants from a pure devotee, then we become purified of all our sinful reactions, just by taking their prasada.

O Vyasadeva, in that association and by the mercy of those great Vedantists, I could hear them describe the attractive activities of Lord Krishna. And thus listening attentively, my taste for hearing of the Personality of Godhead increased at every step. [SB 1.5.26]

O great sage, as soon as I got a taste for the Personality of Godhead, my attention to hear of the Lord was unflinching. And as my taste developed, I could realize that it was only in my ignorance that I had accepted gross and subtle coverings, for both the Lord and I are transcendental. [SB 1.5.27]
So by hearing from them Narada Muni realized that it is due to ignorance that he accepted his gross and subtle coverings. What are the gross and subtle coverings? The gross body and the subtle body (to be the self).
Thus during two seasons – the rainy season and autumn – I had the opportunity to hear these great-souled sages constantly chant the unadulterated glories of the Lord Hari. As the flow of my devotional service began, the coverings of the modes of passion and ignorance vanished. [SB 1.5.28]

So this is the result of rendering devotional service. The coverings of passion and ignorance will disappear and we’ll become situated in the mode of goodness.

I was very much attached to those sages. I was gentle in behaviour, and all my sins were eradicated in their service. In my heart I had strong faith in them. I had subjugated the senses, and I was strictly following them with body and mind. [SB 1.5.29]

As they were leaving, those bhakti-vedantas, who are very kind to poor-hearted souls, instructed me in that most confidential subject which is instructed by the Personality of Godhead Himself. [SB 1.5.30]
By that confidential knowledge, I could understand clearly the influence of the energy of Lord Sri Krishna , the creator, maintainer and annihilator of everything. By knowing that, one can return to Him and personally meet Him. [SB 1.5.31]

O Brahmana Vyasadeva, it is decided by the learned that the best remedial measure for removing all troubles and miseries is to dedicate one’s activities to the service of the Supreme Lord Personality of Godhead [Sri Krishna]. [SB 1.5.32]

So this is again the essence of this particular chapter:
O Brahmana Vyasadeva, it is decided by the learned that the best remedial measure for removing all troubles and miseries is to dedicate one’s activities to the service of the Supreme Lord Personality of Godhead [Sri Krishna]. [SB 1.5.32]

So you what to become free from your suffering? How many of you want to become free from your suffering? Raise your hands. So what you have to do in order to become free from your suffering? Direct all your activities towards glorifying and serving Krishna, to dedicate one’s activities to the service of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. So whatever you do, do it for Krishna, whatever you do. And try not to do anything for yourself. Whatever you do, it doesn’t matter what you do: whether you are cleaning the pot in the temple or whether you are worshipping the Lord on the altar, or you are running a business. Whatever you do, do it for Krishna. Then what will happen? All your miseries and sufferings will disappear.
O good soul, does not a thing, applied therapeutically, cure a disease which was caused by that very same thing? [SB 1.5.33]

This is also very another very important point. So listen carefully. Does not a thing, applied therapeutically – therapeutically means medically – cure a disease which was caused by that very same thing?  What caused the disease if you apply that, then that will act as cure for that disease. Now see, this is the concept of inoculation. Who did medicine here? [devotee: inaudible] Homeopathic medicine, also the same principle. Okay, so how many of you know what is inoculation? Yes, what is that, Bimala? [devotee: inaudible] Yeah, you inject the same germ to cure the disease that caused the disease. People think that this concept of inoculation started recently. Who invented inoculation? Anyone knows? Ganganarayana, do you know who invented inoculation? [devotee: inaudible] You don’t know. I think it is Louis Pasteur. [devotee: for rabies] Rabies, yeah. No, actually it started off with chicken pox. We call it vaccination. You know what they do? I forgot, I think it’s Pasteur, anyway one Westerner. But here we are seeing that five thousand years before in India we had that understanding, that you apply the same germ to cure the disease. And a very common practice actually is snake bite. When you get a snake bite, what happens? What is the cure for a snake bite? Giving the same poison of the snake. Inject the same poison and it will counteract. So what is this inoculation? The disease is caused by our action. Karma, our action for enjoyment, sense enjoyment is causing us the suffering in the material nature. Now the same action, if it is applied to Krishna will be the cure of our suffering. Is it scientific?
Thus when all a man’s activities are dedicated to the service of the Lord, those very activities which caused his perpetual bondage become the destroyer of the tree of work. [SB 1.5.34]

Whatever work is done here in this life for the satisfaction of the mission of the Lord is called bhakti-yoga, or transcendental loving service to the Lord, and what is called knowledge becomes a concomitant factor.  [SB 1.5.35]

When we become engaged in devotional service, knowledge becomes a concomitant factor. Knowledge becomes automatically received.
While performing duties according to the order of Sri Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, one constantly remembers Him, His names and His qualities. [SB 1.5.36]

Let us all chant the glories of Vasudeva along with His plenary expansions Pradyumna, Aniruddha and Sankarshana. [SB 1.5.37]

Thus he is the actual seer who worships, in the form of transcendental sound representation, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vishnu, who has no material form. [SB 1.5.38]

O brahmana, thus by the Supreme Lord Krishna I was endowed first with the transcendental knowledge of the Lord as inculcated in the confidential parts of the Vedas, then with the spiritual opulences, and then with His intimate loving service. [SB 1.5.39]

Please, therefore, describe the Almighty Lord’s activities which you have learned by your vast knowledge of the Vedas, for that will satisfy the hankerings of great learned men and at the same time mitigate the miseries of the masses of common people who are always suffering from material pangs. Indeed, there is no other way to get out of such miseries. [SB 1.5.40]
So in this way ends the fifth chapter of the first Canto of Srimad-Bhagavatam, entitled “Narada’s Instructions on Srimad-Bhagavatam for Vyasadeva.”

So what is the sum and substance of Narada’s instructions? Yes, Rupesh?
Devotee: [inaudible]
BCS: What is the sum and substance?

Devotee: [inaudible]
BCS: Very good, direct all our activities in the service to the Lord. Are you doing it?

Devotee: [inaudible]
BCS: Very good. Yes, we can only try, but practice makes a man perfect. So when you try, it’s difficult, you live outside, you’re doing other things. That’s why at some point when one becomes totally fed up with this materialistic endeavour for enjoyment he becomes a full time devotee. Like Priyavrata and Pradeep, and Bimala Krishna and Ganganarayana. So become fully engaged in the service of the Lord.
So Chaitanya, it makes sense? What are you going to do? Anyway, now you help your father and let him retire. Chaitanya’s father is a disciple of Srila Prabhupada. He is our god-brother and he is a doctor, a very successful doctor in America. Now his father’s plan is to retire and come to Ujjain.
Devotees: Haribol!

BCS: He is making the plan already and now Chaitanya has to take care of his business. He is training him up so that he can retire. So this is what our ultimate aim should be. And that’s why we are developing this project here, right Pradeep? It’s a nice place to retire? So, Bimala it’s nice place to retire? You are happier than being in London? Isn’t it strange? He was earning so much money and here he is not getting anything. And work is much harder. [laughs] There he was working from ten to five or maybe nine to five. Here he is working from…[devotee: five to ten] Not even five to ten, four thirty to ten thirty! [laughter] And he is happier here. So that shows, what is the real solution to the miseries of this material existence? How can we stop the miseries and suffering condition of this material nature, as Rupesh just mentioned? Directing all our activities for the service of the Lord. Simple solution. And the result is immediately perceived.
Sudipto, it makes sense? Okay, Sudipto also is a very good example. He is running his business only for Krishna consciousness, for Krishna, for the Krishna consciousness Movement. And Krishna is also reciprocating. When you try to do that, Krishna reciprocates. When you try to serve Krishna, Krishna makes all the arrangements to facilitate us in our service to Him.

Hare Krishna! Gaura Premanande Hari Haribol! All glories to Srila Prabhupada!

Transcription : Bhaktas Kartik , Kartikeya, Rajat & Dhananjaya

Editing : Her Grace Ranga Radhika Dasi

Audio reference: click here