15 May Transcription Bhagavad-gita Day 1, US Retreat 2009 H.H. Bhakti Caru Swami
Hare Krishna! So did everybody get the summary of the first six chapters? So today I will cover all the six chapters in one go. Are you all ready for that? With rapt attention? What is Bhagavad-Gita? Bhagavad-Gita is the essence of the Vedas. The Vedas are vast, therefore Vyasadeva considered, or Krishna actually considered, that the essence of the Vedas should be given, presented for the conditioned souls, for the fallen degraded souls of the age of Kali. And that’s why He presented that in the Mahabharata, in the form of advising Arjuna. At a very critical time when the battle of Kurukshetra was about to begin, at that time Arjuna decided not to fight. He dropped his bow and arrows and he told Krishna, ‘Krishna I cannot fight in that way.’ And at that time Krishna started to advise Arjuna. And that advice that Krishna gave is the Bhagavad-Gita.
Why Krishna wanted Arjuna to fight? There are two reasons. One is, this battle was Krishna’s arrangement. You remember that verse, yada yada hi dharmasya glanir bhavati bharata? (4.7) Then what does Krishna do? Paritranaya sadhunam vinasaya ca duskrtam.(4.8) Krishna protects the sadhus, Krishna protects the devotees and he annihilates the demons. Therefore Krishna made that arrangement. During His Vrindavana pastimes He killed all the demons, then He left Vrindavana and went to Mathura and killed Kamsa. And then He killed many, many demons one after another. Then He made many other demons to be killed by His devotees like Bhima and Arjuna. And then finally that battle was arranged where all the demons put in one side and all devotees on the other side. And He caused a mass annihilation in order to re-establish dharma. Now, all this battle was arranged and now Arjuna said that he is not going to fight. That is why Krishna wanted to provoke Arjuna.
Another reason is, that all the endeavours were made by so many devotees to stop the battle. So many learned, wise individuals advised them. Vyasadeva personally came to advise Duryodhana. Bhisma told, Vidura told, Gandhari told – but Duryodhana was adamant. Finally Krishna Himself went as a messenger with a peace proposal. But Duryodhana what to speak of listening to Him, he decided to arrest Krishna. He thought if Krishna is not there with the Pandavas, then the Pandavas will become absolutely week and to win over them will be easy for us. So he thought that he will arrest Krishna. At that time Krishna showed His universal form.
All the efforts had already been made, and Duryodhana was adamant, completely adamant to fight the battle. And now when the battle is all set, after all these efforts of peace proposals, then Arjuna said that he will not fight. So Krishna started to advice Arjuna about Bhagavad-Gita. And the apparent objective of Bhagavad-Gita was to provoke Arjuna into the battle. But the ulterior purpose of Bhagavad-gita is to give it to us, so that we can receive that knowledge. That has been very wonderfully described in the Gita-mahatmya. ‘Sarvopanishado gavo dogdha Gopalanandanaha, vatsaha partho sudhirbhokta dugdham Gitamritam mahat. Sarvopanishado gavo. All the Upanishads are like a cow and Krishna is the cowherd boy who milks the cow, making Arjuna the object of that milking. The cow gives milk for the sake of the calf. Because of the calf the cow gives the milk. But the calf doesn’t drink all the milk. Who drinks the milk? Human beings drink milk. So here Arjuna is the nimitte. Arjuna is the objective through whom the Gita was presented. But who drinks this Bhagavad-gita? This nectar of Bhagavad-Gita? Su-dhih. Those, who have very advanced intelligence. Those, who have very beautiful intelligence,. This word ‘su’ can indicates ‘sundara’ which is beautiful intelligence; another is advanced intelligence. People with advanced intelligence can relish Bhagavad-Gita. So that is the purpose of Bhagavad-Gita and in this way, Krishna actually derives the essence of the Vedas.
The Vedas have two branches: one branch is Upanishads and the other branch is Puranas. So the essence of Upanishads is Bhagavad-gita and the essence of all the Puranas is the Srimad Bhagavatam. That is why these two scriptures are absolutely essential. If anybody wants to understand the wisdom of the Vedas, the teachings of the Vedas, then these are the two scriptures that are absolutely essential. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu established these teachings through Bhagavad-gita and Srimad Bhagavatam. All our Acaryas have done that and finally Srila Prabhupada also established the Krishna Consciousness movement on the basis of these two scriptures. You see the importance of these two scriptures. In the morning we study Srimad Bhagavatam and in the evening we study Bhagavad-Gita. So in this way Srila Prabhupada established the importance of these two scriptures. Bhagavad-Gita is very, very important. Bhagavad-Gita is a preliminary study. You begin your spiritual study with Bhagavad-gita. And then the advanced course is Srimad-Bhagavatam. And the post graduate course is Caitanya-Caritamrita.
In the first chapter it has been described how Arjuna decided not to fight but Krishna insisted that he must. He convinced him. Arjuna is actually telling Krishna that he is not going to fight. Then, from the second chapter onwards Krishna’s instructions begin. So Krishna lets Arjuna speak. …
Second chapter of Bhagavad-Gita is known as Sankhya-yoga. But Srila Prabhupada actually titled it as ‘the summary of the Bhagavad-Gita summarized’. The second chapter gives the summary of the Bhagavad-Gita. Now, Sankhya is the analytical study, you analyse. We see that’s what Krishna is doing. Krishna is telling Arjuna the difference between the body and the soul. Arjuna gives various reasons why he won’t be able to fight this battle. Why he should not fight this battle. And it is a very difficult battle to fight as it is. Battle is a serious business. When a warrior, when a ksatriya goes into a battlefield he goes there only with two options open to him – either he will win the battle or he will die. He goes to the battlefield of course with an intention to win but at the same time he knows and his family members know, when somebody goes into a battle the chances of his not coming back is also there. The ksatriya accordingly it seems so they are enjoying so much, they are having a living a royal life, and so much enjoyment and so much fun, but actually the ksatriyas lives are very, very critical and crucial. Can you imagine, the young man goes to the battlefield, and not only the king but all his soldiers and many of them die. And sometimes the king himself dies. And all of a sudden the whole family lost everything. They lost their kingdom because they have been defeated by their enemy. It is actually very painful. That is what has been pointed out in Bhagavad-gita. What does the mode of passion lead to? Mode of passion actually leads to suffering. The effort is there, the endeavour is there to enjoy but eventually it ends up in suffering. Mode of passion leads to suffering. It is only in the mode of goodness that one can be situated in happiness. The real happiness is in the mode of goodness. And the spiritual bliss is even beyond the mode of goodness, in the mode of pure goodness, visuddha tattva. Therefore an intelligent person becomes situated in the mode of goodness and transcends the mode of goodness and comes to the spiritual goodness or pure goodness.
Arjuna is there in the battlefield and he says that he can not kill his guru, his grandfather. He is saying. He is telling Krishna, ‘how can I kill my grandfather? How could I shot arrows – katham bhismam aham sankye dronam ca madhusudana isubhih pratiyotsyami (2.4), isubhih means with arrows, pratiyosyami with contest. Not only that I will shot arrows at them, they will also shot arrows at me. It’s a very difficult situation. So he said, I’m not going to fight this battle. And Krishna heard, Krishna heard, Krishna heard silently. Then finally when Arjuna says, ‘Krishna, I do not know what to do. I am completely confused. Now You please tell me what I should do. I’m assuming the role of Your disciple. I’m becoming Your disciple which means I am accepting You as my spiritual master.’ So when Arjuna submitted himself to Krishna then only Krishna started to advise him. So here also we learn one lesson, unless and until we surrender to Krishna, Krishna is not going to take our responsibility. Sometimes people say, why Krishna is doing this to me, why Krishna is not doing that to me? But the point is, are you surrendering yourself to Krishna? If you are surrendering yourself to Krishna, Krishna will take your responsibility. There is no doubt about that. Krishna Himself is giving that assure. So you surrender and Krishna will take control.
When Arjuna surrendered himself to Krishna, and accepted Him as his spiritual master, then Krishna started to advise him. And those advices are so wonderful. And that is what constitutes Bhagavad-Gita. When Krishna started to speak, the first thing Krishna told Arjuna, ‘Arjuna, you are speaking like a wise man but you don’t know anything. Asocyan anvasocas tvam – you are lamenting over things that one should not lament for. And yet prajna-vadams ca bhasase – you are speaking like a wise man. So He just smashed him straight away. And then He started to give him the advice. ‘Arjuna, you are lamenting that you will kill your grandfather, you will kill these kings and your friends and relatives, but there was never a time when they were not here and there will never be a time when they will not be here. There was never a time when you, I, all these kings were not here and there will never be a time when they will not be here.’ Now, who is that, that will always be here? Who has been in the past, has presented at the moment and will continue to be there in the future? Who is that? The soul. And then Krishna made that point also very clear. The difference between the body and the soul. That is why Bhagavad-Gita is actually very scientific. Bhagavad-Gita is a science. It is the science of the spiritual reality. We have different sciences, sciences of physics, science of chemistry, science of mathematics. There are so many different sciences. Those are the sciences of material subject matters. But this is the science of the spiritual reality. The science of the soul. The science of the soul will lead to the spiritual nature. And eventually it will lead to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Therefore study this subject properly. Then Krishna actually makes this point in very simple way. It is so simple, yet so profound. Just see, the body and the soul. Krishna is establishing the two different elements. He is saying that the body changes from childhood to boyhood to youth, to old age. The body changes but the person doesn’t change. So in spite of the change of the body you are not changing. None of us is changing. Our body is changing but we are the same persons. I at a five year old, I at the age of fifteen, I at the age of twenty-five and I at the age of sixty-four. I am the same person although my body changed. And so Krishna is making a conclusion, that in spite of the changing of the body the person does not change. So when the body will not be there, still the person will be there. In this way He is establishing the eternity of the soul. Dehino ‘smin yatha dehe kaumaram yauvanam jara tatha dehantara-praptir. (2.13) Tatha – just as the body changes. But in spite of the change of the body the person doesn’t change. So when the person will leave the body he will take up another body. Dehantara-praptir. And dhiras tatra na muhyatia, a person situated in knowlage doesn’t lament over that change of the body. And then He establishes the characteristics of the soul. Na jayate mriyate va kadacin. (2.20) The soul is never born nor the will ever die. The soul cannot be destroyed by anything. The body can be killed but soul cannot be killed. The body can be killed by weapons, the body can be killed by fire, the body can be drowned in water. In this way, the can be killed in so many ways. Nainam chindanti sastrani nainam dahati pavakah. (2.23) The soul cannot be cut by any weapon, the soul cannot be burned by fire, the soul cannot be drowned in water, the soul cannot be dried by air. Avinasi tu tad viddhi yena sarvam idam tatam. (2.17) So therefore you recognize that the soul is indestructible. The soul is eternal, first He established, then He established that the soul is indestructible. And in this way, Krishna dealt with the initial aspect of the differentiating the soul from the body. Unfortunately in the material nature we identified ourselves with the body. And that is the cause of our suffering, the cause of our distress. Because we are identified ourselves with the body we are so frustrated. Frustrated why? Because we are actually hankering for the, our hankerings are spiritual. Our hankerings are from the soul. We are conscious beings, we are desiring. There is another consideration. The characteristic of the soul is consciousness. The characteristic of the soul is to desire. And when the desire is fulfilled, there is happiness. Now the problem is that our desires are spiritual and we are trying to achieve those desires, fulfil those desires through this material body. So that is why our desires are never fulfilled. And we are always ending up in disappointment and frustration. And that is the cause of our suffering. The soul is eternal, we don’t want to die. Because we are eternal by nature. We want to be eternal. But we are trying to attain that immortality or eternity through the body. We are trying to make this body eternal, which will never happen. We are trying to make this body fully conscious, which will never happen. And we are trying to experience joy through this body, which will never happen. That is why our life is a series of disappointments and frustrations. So in this way, Krishna is actually preparing us to the right form of understanding. So eventually Krishna comes to the point, what is the characteristic of a wise man. Arjuna is asking, what is the characteristic of a wise man. Stitha prajna, a person who is situated in perfect knowledge. And Krishna describes the nature of a stitha prajna. And here, since we are discussing about sankhya-philosophy we can go to the sankhya-branch of philosophy. Briefly I discuss about that. Sankhya is the analytical study. The purpose of this analytical study is to analyze the material nature and eventually come to the spiritual understanding. Now, the sankhya-philosophy is doing that. Sankhya-philosophy basically is dealing with first analyzing the material elements. There are five elements. Earth, fire, water, air, ether. Then there are five senses. We have five senses, eyes, ears, nose, tongue and tough. Now our senses interact with the five elements. And as a result of that five objects of the senses are generated. Like eyes interact with fire – form is produced. Ear interact with ether – sound is produced. Air interacts with skin – touch is produced. Water interacts with tongue – taste is produced. Nose interacts with earth – smell is produced. So in this way five objects of the senses are produced. So how many got three fives are? Fifteen. Then there are five working senses. Hands, legs, anus, belly and genitals. So, twenty. Then there are three subtle elements, mind, intelligence and false ego. And then there is a sound total of material elements – mahat-tattva. Twenty-four. In this twenty-four considerations the entire material nature has been analyzed. Now see, how thoughtful, how profound, how penetrating they are. They consider that all these twenty-four considerations are objective nature. But the object cannot exist without the subject. So who is the subject? The subject is ‘I’. Now, the entire material nature has been analyzed with these twenty-four considerations. ‘I’ couldn’t be found there. Therefore, ‘I’ is beyond material. So in this way, sankhya is transcending the material platform and coming to the spiritual platform. The ‘I’ is non material, therefore the ‘I’ is spiritual. Then also they didn’t stop at that. The ‘I’s’ are many and minute. So anything that is many and minute must have an origin, master resource. So the ‘I’ ist the twenty-fifth consideration. And the Supreme Personality of Godhead, from whom all the ‘I’s’ have come or all the souls have come, is the twenty-sixth consideration. So that is the general sankhya-philosophy. But Krishna is making an analysis in a rather different way. In a more simple way. Just in two verses. Bhumir apo ‘nalo vayuh kham mano buddhir eva ca. (7.4) Bhumi, earth, water, fire, air and ether, mind, intelligence and false ego. Krishna then is pointing out this material nature has been comprised of this eight material elements. Earth, water, fire, air, ether, mind, intelligence and false ego. But then He is considering that apareyam itas tv anyam (7.5) this is inferior by nature. But beyond this inferior material nature there is a superior nature of mine and the jiva-bhutam, the spirit souls are coming from the superior nature and they are sustaining this material nature. Isn’t it the same conclusion? But Krishna’s conclusion is so simple. Why? Because Krishna is not beating around the bush. He is going straight to the point. Why? Because He knows. When we do not know, then we make an extensive search. And then, through that we come to the conclusion. But when somebody knows he can present it in a very simple way. Therefore the wise mans presentation is very simple and a fools presentation is elaborate. So Krishna is just pointing it out in a very simple way. Bhinna prakrtir astadha and then apareyam itas tv anyam prakrtim viddhi me param. Beyond this inferior material nature there is a superior nature. Now the consideration is, whether we are going to be life in the world of Krishna. Krishna is saying, Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. What is the use, what is the need for Krishna to lie? What is the use of Krishna to say something which is not true? That’s why an intelligent person will accept the words of Krishna without any doubts or hesitations. And that is what Krishna’s representative always try to remind us. Accept the words of Krishna. That is what Srila Prabhupada came and told us time and time again. Just accept the words of Krishna. Then everything becomes crystal clear, everything becomes easy and our lives become full of joy. All we have to do is simply accept it.
In the third chapter Krishna is actually presenting the arrangement of this material nature. This material nature has different demigods controlling the different affairs of this material nature. Who are the demigods? They are very powerful individuals. They are empowered by Krishna to take care of different affairs of the material nature. An example can be given. Just as in the governmental affairs there different departments. There are different individuals who are in charge. Responsible part those departments. Like we have electric supply department, water supply department, education department, finance department, public works department, construction department, road department, atomic research department and on top there is a person who is in charge of those departments. And what are those departments doing? Those departments actually provide us with different facilities. They provide us with facilities. Like we are sitting in a room we are getting electric supply. And as a result of that what we have to do? We are getting the electricity, enjoying the facility but we have to pay the bills. We have to pay for the facilities that we are enjoying. Now the demigods are the departmental heads. And Krishna is telling that they are going to supply you with all those necessities of your life and you pay them in return. And that is the system of sacrifice, yajna.
This arrangement has been made, the arrangement of yajna. Which means simply, you enjoy the facility and pay the bill. And if you do that, then what will happen? You will enjoy. You lead a very, very nice and happy life. But if you don’t pay then, what will happen? You enjoy the electricity, for one month you have enjoyed it, and then the bill came and you decided not to pay the bill. What will happen? The next month there won’t be any electricity. They cut it off. They cut the electric supply. So similarly in a broader sense, in the nature, we are getting all this facilities but there we were being provided by the demigods. And we are supposed to offer them the sacrifice. We are supposed to pay the bill in the form of sacrifice. They don’t want anything else. All they want is just some sacrifice. It costs very little. You are getting so much and you are paying so little. So why not? So why Krishna is advising us to do that? Because this is how the law and order of this material nature will be maintained. It’s like a large and extensive government system, affairs of the material nature. And Krishna advices that in this way how one can life so happily. And eventually Krishna is actually saying that what is your need? An example has been given. You need food. That is the most essential element, ingredient for our survival. And the food is produced because of rain. Annad bhavanti bhutani.(3.14) Living entities survive by eating food. Parjanyad anna-sambhava. The food grains were produced due to rain. And yajnad bhavati parjano. And it is because of yajna, sacrifice that rain actually comes. Yajnah karma-samudbhavah. In this way the process of sacrifice has been established by Krishna. And in this way Krishna gave an extensive understanding of how to live happily in this nature. The supplier and consumer, a proper relationship must be established. And this relationship comes on ultimately in the form of the kings. Who will train the people? Who will make all this arrangements? The leader of the mankind. The kings. Unfortunately in democracy there is no king. And therefore all kinds of low class people are taking up the leadership. But actually the kings are the highest class of people. They are rajarsis, the saintly personalities who used to become the king. And they used to be trained up from their childhood to execute this job properly. They used to properly trained and then they used to assume the responsibility. But in the name of democracy what is happening? People, those who don’t have any training, all they know is how to bluff, how to swindle, how to cheat and get votes. And when they get votes, then they become the leader. And that also only for five or four years. And they know, that whatever they have to make they have to make it in these four years time. And as a result of that, the human society is in such a terrible condition. But Krishna actually pointed out that this knowledge, this system was established by the royal order.
In the beginning of the forth chapter Krishna is telling, that I give this knowledge to the sungod, Vivasvan, imam vivasvate yogam proktavan aham avyayam vivasvan manave praha.(4.1) Vivasvan gave it to Manu, sungod gave it to his son, Vaivasvata Manu. And Manu gave it to his son Iksvaku. And evam parampara-praptam imam rajarsayo vidhu.(4.2) In the line of saintly kings, in the disciplic succession of the saintly kings this knowledge was flowing and they were actually establishing this understanding and guiding their citizens in the proper path of prosperity and happiness. So that was Krishna’s point. He just gradually mentioned it. But then Arjuna came on with a question. Arjuna said, ‘Vivasvan was born so long ago, and you were born just the other day, aparam bhavato janma param janma vivasvatah, katham etad vijaniyam tvam adau proktavan iti. (4.4) How can I believe, not believe, he said vijaniyam, how can I understand that you gave this knowledge to Vivasvan? See, all this while in the Bhagavad-Gita and before also, Arjuna and Krishna they were cousins. Their relationships were that of cousins. And Arjuna and Krishna were of the same age. Therefore they had a very intimate, friendly relationship. Just as among the cousins of the same age become close to each other, very intimate to each other. So that was Arjuna’s relationship with Krishna. He was His cousin. But now his cousin was saying ‘I gave this knowledge to Vivasvan’? So now automatically he was curious. How can He speak like that? Then Krishna actually makes the point. Look Arjuna, bhahuni me vyatitani janma tava carjuna.(4.5) Many, many times, both you and I have taken birth. Tany aham veda sarvani. But I know all of them. Na tvam vettah parantapa. But Arjuna, you do not remember them. So in this way Krishna is now establishing the difference between Him and Arjuna. The difference between the living entity and the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The living entity is also eternal, the Supreme Personality of Godhead is also eternal. But the difference is, that the Supreme Personality of Godhead knows everything whereas the living entity forgets. As soon as he dies he forgets. Then he begins with a new body and in that body he begins another chapter. Then, in this way, life after life, in different bodies, he goes through different experiences. And he forgets about his previous life. Whereas Krishna is telling, that tany aham veda sarvani, sarvani means all. Of those lives, I have been, I remember everything. Then Krishna is saying, ‘Actually, Arjuna, I don’t have to take birth. You need o take birth. You have to go from one body to another, through the cycle of birth and death. But that is not the case with me. Ajo ‘pi sann avyayatma bhutanam isvaro ‘pi san, prakrtim svam adhistaya sambhavamy atma-mayaya.(4.6) Sambhavamy atma-mayaya, I manifest, I appear, I am actually unborn. In order to come here I don’t have to take birth. Sometimes I take birth. Especially when I perform my pastime as a human being, in the human life form. Then I take birth, like Ramacandra, Krishnacandra, Caitanyacandra, I take birth. But there are many other incarnations where I don’t take birth, where I don’t need to take birth. Like Matsya, Kurma. Matsya-avatara didn’t take birth from another fish. He just appeared to king Satyavrata. As Varahadev He appeared from the nostril of Brahma. As Kurma He just appeared from nowhere. There was a need. Now the milk-ocean has to be churned, they got Mandara Mountain to churn the milk-ocean. But when the brought the Mandara Mountain it sank in the milk-ocean. So both, the demigods and the demons, were completely baffled. Now, what to do? So Krishna said, don’t worry. I will take care of it. So He appeared as tortoise and He supported that mountain on His back. So in this way, Krishna can appear in any way. He can appear from nowhere, He can also appear from somewhere, He can also appear from a pillar, as Nrsimhadeva did. So that is why how wonderful Krishna’s activities are. So, ajo api, although I am unborn but still bhutanam isvaro ‘pi san, prakrtim svam adhisthaya, taking shelter of my eternal potency I manifest Myself. Sambhavamy atma-mayaya. And why do I come? Yada yada hi dharmasy glanir bhavati bharata.(4.7) So in this way, Krishna is now establishing His real identity as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. In the fourth chapter Krishnas identity has been established as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. And then Krishna advised Arjuna how and why to surrender unto Him.
And then in the fifth chapter Krishna actually goes into another aspect of sacrifice. Prior to that in the third chapter, Krishna spoke about yajna or sacrifice. And He said that, offer it to the demigods. But then He pointed out that the demigods are actually granting you all this facilities because of Me. I have given them the authority. It is My arrangement. Therefore, there is no need to go to the demigods. You can come directly to Me. So in this way in the fifth chapter, Krishna very eloquently reminded us that the real sacrifice is to offer everything to Krishna. That is the ultimate purpose of our sacrifice.
Thank you very much.
Question : The living entity is superior energy. So how come this superior energy is weaker than the inferior energy?
Guru Maharaja : Very good point. The living entities are from the superior energy and material nature is inferior. Then how come the superior energy, the living entities come under the control of the material nature? The living entities are not superior energy as such. They are from the superior energy. But they are minute. Whereas material nature although it is inferior by nature or characteristic, it is Krishnas own potency. Daivi hy esa guna-mayi mama maya duratyaya. (7.14) Living entities therefore had been classified as marginal. There are two energies: inferior energy and superior energy. External energy, internal energy. And in between there is the marginal energy, the living entities. The living entities are from the marginal energy. Marginal means, they have the option open to them. Whether they want to go to the inferior energy or whether they want to go to the superior energy. If they surrender to Krishna then they will be in the superior nature. If they reject Krishna, then they will be in the inferior nature. The simple option is open to them.
Question : One technical question?
Guru Maharaja : Sure.
Guru Maharaja : This disciplic succession, Krishna is saying, that I am reestablishing the knowledge, because it is lost, through you. Because you are my friend and you are my devotee. And the disciplic succession that is been given there is a Gaudiya vaisnava line. Brahma-Madhva-Gaudiya line. In that line Arjuna also is not there. Right? So that it a very special line. And that line is not exactly that line of Bhagavad-gita. That is the Bhagavata-parampara, the line of Srimad Bhagavatam. The understanding of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. You see, that is why the Bhagavad-gita is the primary study, it is not leading you. I mean, it is not taking you to the ultimate point. It is leading you towards that direction. But Srimad Bhagavatam is what will lead you to the main point.
Question : In the second chapter it is said, the second chapter is known as Gita-sutre. Because in this separate karma and jnana has been described clearly but not Bhakti. So how can I understand that point?
Guru Maharaja : Initially, Krishna is taking us step by step into that point. Karma and jnana have been discussed but Bhakti is a very special line. Indication has been given. Say for example, when Krishna is saying, that I am reestablishing all this through you, because bhakto ‘si me sakha ceti, (7.3), indication of that is there, but the elaborate and extensive discussion didn’t take place. Krishna is reserving it from seventh to twelfth chapter. The first six chapters of Bhagavad-gita are dealing with karma, the second six chapters are dealing with Bhakti and the third six chapters are dealing with jnana. Now, one may say, that means karma and then Bhakti and then ultimately jnana? No, that is not the real understanding. The real understanding is, when you have something very valuable, where do you keep it? Do you keep it outside or keep it in the middle? You protect it. So that is what Krishna did. The second six chapters, the midst six chapter, are the most important part of Bhagavad-gita. And we will discuss that.
Guru Maharaja : You see, although Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and He gave the knowledge, but we cannot really converse with Krishna. Like knowledge is based on question and answers. When you don’t understand, what do you do? You have to ask. You have to present :”Well, can you please explain this or what I cannot understand?” Now, we can’t do that with Krishna. Therefore Krishna’s representatives are there who we can ask and who can explain it to us. And that representative of Krishna is the spiritual master. So, we need a spiritual master to ask questions to who can dispel our doubts. But his qualification is that he simply repeats what Krishna has said. He doesn’t concoct something new. And that is why he is a bona fide representative of Krishna. Like for example, you can take a book. But can you master the subject just by reading the book yourself? It is practically impossible. For example if you want to become a doctor. There are so many books on that science. But just by studying those books, can you become a doctor? No. but you go to the faculty university, medical science, and you study under the guidance of the teachers. And, after three, four or five years, you become a qualified doctor. Because you understood the subject. What is present in the books, has been simplified by this people, the teachers. And that is how you have mastered the subject. Similarly the spiritual knowledge also must be received through the guidance of a bona fide teacher. And those bona fide teachers are the spiritual masters. And their qualification is, that they represent Krishna. They present the way, the knowledge has been given by Krishna. And they have received to knowledge as it has been presented by Krishna, because they have received it from a person who had mastered the subject himself.
Transcription : Sacikumara Dasa
Editing : Ramananda Raya Dasa