30 May Uddhava-gītā US Retreat – Day 1 – Introduction
INTERNATIONAL SOCIETY FOR KRISHNA CONSCIOUSNESS
Founder-Ācārya: His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
Day 1- Introduction Lecture on Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, Canto 11, Chapter 7, Text 7 Given By His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami – Uddhava-gītā Retreat – Gita-Nagari US, 30 May 2013
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Did you all have a good rest?
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Are you all comfortably situated?
Why you all are are so far?
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: You can pull up your chairs closer. Are you all happy to be here?
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Are you at home?
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Are you missing your home?
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Does it feel better than home?
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Okay, [laughs] Thank you. [Guru Mahārāja starts singing: “Jaya Radha-Madhava followed by Hare Kṛṣṇa Mantra singing]
Nama Om Visnu-Pādāya Krsna-Presthāya Bhū-tale
Śrīmate Bhaktivedānta-Svāmin Iti Nāmine
Namas Te Sārasvate Deve Gaura-Vānī-Pracārine
Śrīla Prabhupāda Ki Jaya!
[Guru Mahārāja goes and garlands Śrīla Prabhupāda’s Murti, he puts his own garland at the lotus feet of Śrīla Prabhupāda and then pays obeisances to Śrīla Prabhupāda]
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Hare Kṛṣṇa!
Devotees: Hare Kṛṣṇa
Uddhava-gītā : Introduction
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: So we are starting our seminar on Uddhava-gītā. Uddhava-gītā is described in the eleventh Canto of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. Bhagavad-gītā, you are all aware of, Bhagavad-gītā is spoken by Kṛṣṇa to Arjuna and Uddhava-gītā was spoken to Uddhava by Kṛṣṇa Himself. How many of you are aware of Uddhava? How many of you know Uddhava? Who is Uddhava? How many of you do not know?
Okay, so briefly: Uddhava is considered to be the greatest devotee of Kṛṣṇa in Dvārakā. And where is Dvārakā? Dvārakā is, you can say, even beyond Vaikuṇṭha. In Bṛhat-Bhāgavatamṛtam Nārada Muni is searching for the greatest devotee of Kṛṣṇa. And his search started from the earth planet. In the earth planet he thought that a brāhmaṇa who was rendering service to the Lord, worshiping Him, was the greatest devotee. Then when he went to the brāhmaṇa, the brāhmaṇa told him: “No, no, I am not the greatest devotee. The greatest devotee is such and such kṣatriya king. So he went to the kṣatriya king. The kṣatriya king pointed to Indra as the greatest devotee. He went to Indra and Indra pointed out to lord Brahmā as the greatest devotee. Lord Brahmā pointed to lord Śiva as the greatest devotee. Lord Śiva pointed to Prahlāda Mahārāja as the greatest devotee. Prahlāda Mahārāja pointed to Hanumān as the greatest devotee. And they were giving reasons why they are greater than them. Then Hanumān pointed to the Pāṇḍavas as the greatest devotees. The Pāṇḍavas pointed to the residents of Dvārakā as the greatest devotees. And the residents of Dvārakā pointed to Uddhava as the greatest devotee. Of course the story does not end there. It goes further, Nārada Muni got to realize that even beyond Dvārakā is Vrindavan and the residents of Vrindavan are the greatest devotees. And among all the residents of Vrindavan Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī is the greatest devotee. So the final point is Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī, she is the greatest devotee. She is the greatest recipient of Kṛṣṇa’s mercy.
But in this way we can see the position of Uddhava. And who is Uddhava? Uddhava is Kṛṣṇa’s cousin, His best friend. And He is also His minister. Uddhava is personally trained by Bṛhaspati, the Guru of the demigods. This is the exalted position of Uddhava and Uddhava was a constant companion of Kṛṣṇa. Uddhava stayed with Kṛṣṇa throughout the day. Only when Kṛṣṇa fell asleep, then Uddhava used to go home. And in the morning, even before Kṛṣṇa woke up, Uddhava came back. That is an ideal servant. He goes to sleep after the master goes to sleep and he comes to attend the master even before he wakes up. This is the position of Uddhava. One of the greatest devotees.
Of course there is another aspect. Kṛṣṇa detected that Uddhava had some pride in his heart, being most intimate to Kṛṣṇa and being the greatest recipient of Kṛṣṇa’s mercy. Another Name of Kṛṣṇa is Darpa-Hari, Kṛṣṇa smashes the pride. When one becomes proud, Kṛṣṇa smashes this pride. Kṛṣṇa detected that Uddhava had a little pride of being the greatest devotees. So Kṛṣṇa told Uddhava: “Uddhava, these cowherd girls and cowherd boys, they are feeling great separation from Me because I am not able to be there with them. You carry this message from Me and you also pacify them, telling them they should not miss Me in this way.” So Uddhava carried the letter to them, thinking that: “Yes, I will give them the proper advice not to feel the separation of Kṛṣṇa in this way. But when Uddhava went to Vrindavan and he saw the devotion of the gopīs then Uddhava realized that his devotion to Kṛṣṇa is so insignificant compared to theirs. Therefore Uddhava wanted to receive the dust from the lotus feet of these gopīs. He prayed, he desired that he could become a creeper, a blade of grass in Vrindavan. āsām aho caraṇa-reṇu-juṣām ahaṁ syāṁ vṛndāvane kim api gulma-latauṣadhīnām… Gulma means a bush, taru a tree and auṣadhīnām means small plants. I wish that I could become that in Vrindavan. So that I could get the dust of the lotus feet when they walk by.
In this respect one question was raised: Why Uddhava wanted to become a blade of grass or a bush in Vrindavan? If he wanted the dust of the gopīs then he should rather be on the street, in the roads of Vrindavan. And Uddhava’s reply to that was: “When the gopīs hear the sound of Kṛṣṇa’s flute, they become so mad to meet Kṛṣṇa, that they lose all their consciousness. They just run to meet Kṛṣṇa. At that time they don’t have any consideration where the road is or where is the bush. The chances are more that the gopīs will run through the bushes or just through the field to meet with Kṛṣṇa. And Uddhava is still there by Rādhā-kuṇḍa. Uddhava is still there as a bush. Those of you who have gone there, they have seen, Uddhava is still there as a bush. This is the position of Uddhava.
Uddhava could understand that Kṛṣṇa was going to withdraw His pastimes. Therefore Uddhava requested Kṛṣṇa that he could also go with Him. But Kṛṣṇa told him to stay on and to go to Badarīkā āśrama. And then Kṛṣṇa instructed Uddhava and those instructions of Kṛṣṇa are the Uddhava-Gītā. Bhāgavatam describes all the ten aspects of Purāṇa leading to Āśraya. Mahapurāṇa has got ten symptoms; those ten symptoms are Sarga, Visarga, Sthāna, Poṣaṇa, Ūti, Manv-antara, Īśānukathā, Mukti, Nirodha, Āśraya
It starts with Sarga. Sarga means creation. Visarga means secondary creation. Creation and sub-creation. Sthānam: planetary systems. Poṣaṇam: how the entire universe is being sustained, maintained by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Poṣaṇam. Then Ūtaya: the different lineages of the royal families. Manv-antara: the different Manus and their reigns. In a day of Brahmā fourteen Manus appear. Each reign of a Manu is called a Manv-antara. At that time the entire system changes. Like the system means, different demigods, sages and sofort. The whole shift changes. Like Indra changes. For example Purandara is Indra now. And in next Manv-antara – this is the Vaivashvata Manv-antara – In the next Manv-antara Bali Mahārāja will become Indra. He will get the position of Indra. And then all the demigods also will change. Like in a factory you have shifts and you have foremen? A foreman has a team. As the shift changes the foreman comes with his team and takes over the responsibility of the factory. Similarly one can say, Manu is the foreman. And different demigods and sages like saptaṛṣīs, they all are different machine men, different workers in the shift. This is how it is called Manv-antara, they are specifically described. Isanu katha the activities of the Supreme Personality of Godhead’s incarnations. The Lord appears in different incarnations and those activities of the Lord are described in the Purāṇas, Maha-Purāṇas. And then Mukti, liberation, how to become free from the material bondage and the state of total cessation of material involvement. And then Āśraya, ultimate shelter, sarva-kāraṇa-kāraṇam. Kṛṣṇa is the ultimate cause, therefore Kṛṣṇa is the ultimate shelter. So that ultimate shelter Kṛṣṇa is the final point of this Maha-Purāṇa: Āśraya. Śrīla Prabhupāda expressed it as the summum bonum, the ultimate Benefactor, the ultimate point, the ultimate achievement. You can see that all that has been described, you can see that Kṛṣṇas final pastimes in Vrindavan, Mathura and Dvārakā have been described in the tenth Canto of the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam: Kṛṣṇa, The Supreme Personality of Godhead. Who is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The Supreme, Supreme Personality of Godhead is Kṛṣṇa. And Kṛṣṇa’s pastimes are in Dvārakā, in Mathurā, and in Vrindavan. Even then Kṛṣṇa in Vrindavan is THE real Supreme Personality of Godhead. He is the cause of all causes. He is the cause of even the incarnations. Kṛṣṇa is not an incarnation but Kṛṣṇa is the source of all incarnations: Avatāri: Sava avatar sar shiromani. He is the Crest-Jewel of all the incarnations. That is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, that is Kṛṣṇa not of Dvārakā, not of Mathura but Kṛṣṇa of Vrindavan is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. That has been very clearly established in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam , specially through the Teachings of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu actually reminded us that Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Which Kṛṣṇa ? Stat dhamo Vrindavanam, Kṛṣṇa Whose dhama is Vrindavan, Whose abode is… That means Kṛṣṇa of Vrindavan is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Kṛṣṇa of Dvārakā is Purna, Kṛṣṇa in Mathura is Purnatara and Kṛṣṇa of Vrindavan is Purnatama. Kṛṣṇa is the perfect, in Dvārakā Kṛṣṇa is more perfect and in Vrindavan Kṛṣṇa is most perfect. That is the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
So Kṛṣṇa was leaving; Kṛṣṇa came and He is about to leave. He told Uddhava what would happen. Due to the brāhmaṇa’s curse all the Yadus will be annihilated. Annihilated means: Yadus are all the members of the Yadu-family, Kṛṣṇa’s family; they are all Kṛṣṇa’s eternal associates. They came from the spiritual sky to assist Kṛṣṇa in His pastimes, to take part in Kṛṣṇa’s pastimes, they all came for that. But they are just playing the role. This is the meaning of pastime. Pastime is something like a drama on a stage. It is enacted. What happens in a drama? Different actors, actresses play different roles. What is the purpose of a drama? Of course entertainment. And Kṛṣṇa’s pastimes are also a kind of an entertainment. When Kṛṣṇa says: “Paritrāṇāya sādhūnāṁ” He actually means to entertain the sādhūs. And by doing that He also entertains, He also derives joy. This is a very special loving exchange that Kṛṣṇa has with His devotees. And through this loving exchange Kṛṣṇa actually enjoys and gives pleasure, joy to His devotees also. So Kṛṣṇa came with His devotees and His associates from the spiritual sky also came.
Now Kṛṣṇa considered to send them back. Kṛṣṇa could have told them: “Now, just go back.” But in this material nature, when Kṛṣṇa comes, Kṛṣṇa plays like other living entities also, because Kṛṣṇa came to teach some lessons, so that we can learn something. Kṛṣṇa enacts in a certain way. What did Kṛṣṇa do before withdrawing His pastimes? He sent the Yadus to Prabhāsa. You all go to perform sastaya, to bring peace, susti. They went there to Prabhāsa-tirtha from Dvārakā. And they got intoxicated. They drank some wine. And they got intoxicated and they started to fight. And in that fight they all killed each other. So then there was no one left. Kṛṣṇa told that to Uddhava in advance, that is what is going to happen. These Yadus will receive a brāhmaṇa’s curse, that also is another story…
Brāhmaṇa means great sages: Nārada Muni, Viśvāmitra, Vasiṣṭha, Durvāsā. These members of the Yadu family, Kṛṣṇa’s family, seeing those sages, they wanted to make fun of them, like: “Oh, you all are tri-kāla, the knower of three aspects of time: past, present and future. They put a cloth and tied it up around Sambas belly and dressed him up like a woman. As if he was a pregnant woman. And they went to the sages and asked: “Can you please tell whether he will give birth to a boy or a girl?” And they answered: “Well, he will give birth to someone who will destroy your entire family.” This is again another pastime of Kṛṣṇa. It is just a drama. They have to go back now. So this is the plot how the scene is set.
So hearing that, then they came back to their senses and said: “Oh my God, what did we do? They cursed us that our entire family will be destroyed.” They went back to the assembly and reported to Ugrasena about the curse. Ugrasena was the king, Kṛṣṇa’s grandfather. Then it was decided: “Okay, this club is supposed to be the destroyer of the whole family, so you get rid of this club by pulverizing it, rubbing it on a stone. So it will become pulverized. So they did that. The club was rubbed and rubbed and rubbed, so that it became powdered through rubbing. And it was done on the river side, on the ocean side. Then finally there was a small, little piece left that could not be rubbed, a small, final piece of this steel. They threw it in the water. Now this pulverized steel gathered on the river bank and it developed into apparently some seaweeds. Not exactly weed, it is like a hollow bamboo like thing. When they got intoxicated they actually pulled out those weeds and with that they started to fight. Now consider, they are the valiant, powerful warriors and just fighting with some sticks they all killed each other. And that also these are hollow sticks, so much so that if you just hit it on your hands it will break.
So these are Kṛṣṇa’s pastimes, these are the divine arrangements of Yoga-maya, like a play on the stage. And it has been enacted in that way. And do you remember that final piece that could not be pulverized? That piece was thrown in the ocean and a fish swallowed it. The fish was caught by a fisherman and when he cut the fish, he found this small steel piece. He thought: “Okay, I can sell this one also in the market and get something for it.” He sold it in the market. A hunter bought it and he thought: “Oh, nice metal piece, sharp steel plate. With this I will make an arrow for hunting.
This hunter mistook Kṛṣṇa’s feet, lotus feet to be the ears of a deer. And he shot the arrow. And that pierced Kṛṣṇa’s foot, the heel. And as a result of that, Kṛṣṇa left the planet. Now, like the devotees can understand that these are Kṛṣṇa’s pastimes, just pastimes. When Kṛṣṇa was driving Arjunas chariot on the battlefield, Kṛṣṇa’s whole body was pierced with arrows because the charioteer also gets the arrows. Sometimes the warriors make it a point to kill the charioteer so that the warrior will become bereft of the chariot and it will be easy to defeat him. So Kṛṣṇa got so many arrows in His body. And those arrows were not some ordinary arrows; those arrows were empowered by some special mantras. To give an example like how these warriors feel: Bhismadeva was fighting with Arjuna and Śikhaṇḍī was in front of Arjuna. Bhishmadeva knew that Śikhaṇḍī is a woman or rather he was borne as a woman and he became transformed into a man. Bhishmadeva as a hero, as a warrior, he did not want to shoot arrows to any woman. So he stopped fighting, he was just standing there without any retaliation. So Śikhaṇḍī was shooting arrows and Arjuna was shooting arrows. So Bhishmadeva later on mentioned that Śikhaṇḍī’s arrows were just like some feather touch, there was no power in that. Although they pierced his body but he did not feel anything. But Arjuna’s arrows were coming like thunderbolts. That is the difference, Śikhaṇḍī’s arrows were like a touch of feather and Arjuna’s arrows were like thunderbolt. Now, these are very, very powerful ksatriya warriors. But he is a hunter, right? An insignificant hunter. Kṛṣṇa being shot by thousands of arrows, He did not feel anything. But just one hunter’s arrow did not even hit Him on some vulnerable point but on his foot. And Kṛṣṇa left this planet.
About Kṛṣṇa’s condition after the battle of Kuruksetra, how many of you are from near the Madras’ area, the Chennai area? There is a Parthasarathi temple in Chennai? That temple actually has the Deity of Kṛṣṇa. It is said that after the battle of Kuruksetra Kṛṣṇa came there. And that Deity of Kṛṣṇa’s body is filled with marks. And these are the marks of the arrows that were pulled out afterwards. The whole body of Kṛṣṇa was pierced in this way, indicating that the whole body of Kṛṣṇa was pierced with arrows during the battle. Then nothing happened to Kṛṣṇa, but now just one hunters’ insignificant arrow made Kṛṣṇa so-called die. This is how the devotees know that these are the pastimes of Kṛṣṇa. Whereas the non-devotees, they get an opportunity: “See, I told you Kṛṣṇa is an ordinary person.” So they get a chance also to think in whatever way they want to think.
Kṛṣṇa was about to withdraw His pastimes. So He told Uddhava about that. And Kṛṣṇa told Uddhava to go to Bhadarika-asrama. Why in Bhadarika-asrama? Gave reason why Kṛṣṇa told him that. Because… Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura is given reason why Kṛṣṇa felt like that: “Although I came and gave my association to the devotees but some of the sages did not get my association. Like Nara-Nārāyaṇa and their associates and many exalted sages were in Badarīkā āśrama. Why Badarīkā āśrama ? Because Kṛṣṇa thought: “Although I could not give my association to them, Uddhava is practically non-different from Me. So let him go and give them his association.” That is the reason why Kṛṣṇa asked Uddhava to go to Badarīkā āśrama. And also Kṛṣṇa wanted him to stay for a little longer and then so that he could preach his message to others. Because Kali-yuga will begin. And the condition of this world will become very, very difficult. And the teachings from Uddhava probably will create some good fortune for this world. That’s why Kṛṣṇa wanted Uddhava to stay for a little longer time before leaving this planet and going back to the spiritual sky.
And in this way this conversation began between Kṛṣṇa and Uddhava. I completely forgot that I gave one verse to discuss because of the Bhāgavatam class. I took quite a long time to give the introduction.
Oṁ Namo Bhagavate Vāsudevāya
Oṁ Namo Bhagavate Vāsudevāya
Oṁ Namo Bhagavate Vāsudevāya
Chapter 7 : Kṛṣṇa Instructs Uddhava
yad idam manasa vaca
nasvaram grhyamanam ca
yat — that which; idam — this world; manasa — by the mind; vaca — by speech; caksurbhyam — by the eyes; sravana-adibhih — by the ears and other senses; nasvaram — temporary; grhyamanam — that which is being accepted or perceived; ca — and; viddhi — you should know; maya-manah-mayam — it is only imagined to be real by the influence of maya.
My dear Uddhava, the material universe that you perceive through your mind, speech, eyes, ears and other senses is an illusory creation that one imagines to be real due to the influence of maya. In fact, you should know that all of the objects of the material senses are temporary.
The question may be raised that since we find good and bad qualities throughout the material world, how can Lord Krsna advise Uddhava to see everything equally? In this verse Krsna explains that material good and evil are a creation of the illusory energy, just as the objects of a dream are a mental creation. As stated in Bhagavad-gita, vasudevah sarvam iti: [Bg. 7.19] Lord Krsna is actually everything because He is present within everything and everything is present within Him. Krsna is sarva-loka-mahesvaram [Bg. 5.29], the Lord and proprietor of all worlds. To see anything separate from Krsna is illusion, and attraction to any kind of material illusion, either good or bad, is ultimately useless since it obliges the living entity to continue wandering in the cycle of birth and death.
So Kṛṣṇa started to advise Uddhava. There are some very important points that Kṛṣṇa mentioned earlier in the same chapter. I just read those few verses: Verses three onwards: Okay let us just start from the beginning. That actually gives a proper understanding of these few chapters.
(SB 11.7.1) The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: O greatly fortunate Uddhava, you have accurately revealed My desire to withdraw the Yadu dynasty from the earth and return to My own abode in Vaikuntha. Thus Lord Brahmā, Lord Śiva and all other planetary rulers are now praying for Me to resume My residence in Vaikuntha.
Kṛṣṇa came from the spiritual sky and now Kṛṣṇa is preparing to go back. And the demigods, the exalted personalities like lord Śiva and lord Brahmā knew Who Kṛṣṇa is and it is due to Brahmā’s prayers that Kṛṣṇa actually came to this material nature. And they are now requesting: “Okay, now the purpose has been served, the mission has been accomplished; the demons have been annihilated, so now Kṛṣṇa You can go back. So now the question may arise: “Why are they asking Kṛṣṇa to go back to Vaikuntha?” So this actually indicates that Lord Brahmā, Lord Śiva also did not have the real understanding Who Kṛṣṇa actually is. They are actually addressing Which Kṛṣṇa ? Kṛṣṇa of Dvārakā. This is not Kṛṣṇa of Vrindavan that they are dealing with. Kṛṣṇa of Vrindavan is THE Supreme Personality of Godhead. He came in this particular Manv-antara. Which Manv-antara is this? Okay, I will ask again. How many Manus are there in a day of Brahmā?
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: And which Manu’s reign is going on?
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: What is the name of this Manu?
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Vaivashvata Manv-antara.
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Very good, very good! Vaivashvata Manv-antara. In a day of Brahmā there are fourteen Manus and during the seventh Manu on the twenty eight… How many catur-yugas are there in a reign of one Manu?
Devotees: Seventy one.
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: One thousand divided by fourteen is about seventy one, seventy one plus something. One Manu’s reign is for seventy one catur yugas. Out of these seventy one catur yugas of Vaivashvata Manu, in the twenty eight catur-yuga, the Dvapara-yuga, Kṛṣṇa the Supreme Personality of Godhead comes. This is that catur-yuga. And in the following catur-yuga Kṛṣṇa comes as Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. Kṛṣṇa of Vrindavan does not come every Dvapara-yuga. He comes only once in a very special Dvapara-yuga. So that Dvapara-yuga, Kṛṣṇa the original Personality of Godhead reveals His Vraja-lila. They are not addressing Nanda Nandana Kṛṣṇa, they are addressing Vāsudeva Kṛṣṇa of Dvārakā. So this Vāsudeva Kṛṣṇa descended
Answering the prayer of Lord Brahmā, I descended within this world along with My plenary portion, Lord Baladeva, and performed various activities on behalf of the demigods. I have now completed My mission here. (SB 11.7.2)
Now due to the Brahmānas’ curse the Yadu dynasty will certainly perish by fighting among themselves; and on the seventh day from today the ocean will rise up and inundate this city of Dvārakā. (SB 11.7.3)
So Dvārakā also will disappear. Remember Kṛṣṇa created Dvārakā? Kṛṣṇa transferred His capital from Mathura to Dvārakā. Because Jarāsandha was causing too much trouble. This is again a part of Kṛṣṇa’s pastimes. Now that Kṛṣṇa is going to withdraw His pastimes, Dvārakā also will disappear. The ocean will engulf.
O saintly Uddhava, in the near future I will abandon this earth. Then, being overwhelmed by the age of Kali, the earth will be bereft of all piety. (SB 11.7.4)
And then Kṛṣṇa actually advises him to go to Badarīkā āśrama.
Did I read the complete purport? Okay I continue the purport of today’s verse:
Seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting and touching constitute the activities of the five knowledge-gathering senses. Similarly, the voice, the hands, the legs, the anus and the genital constitute the five working senses. These ten senses are organized around the mind, which is the center of material activity. When the living entity desires to exploit matter, he is covered by the three modes of nature. Thus he concocts different philosophical, political and social explanations of reality but never understands the Absolute Truth, Lord Krsna, Who is beyond the contaminated perception of the material senses. One who is entangled in the network of material designations, such as race, nationality, sectarian religion, political affiliation, etc., is absorbed in the experience of combining his body and other bodies with material sense objects, thinking these sense objects to be sources of happiness and satisfaction. Unfortunately, the entire material world, along with the senses that experience it, is a temporary creation that will be annihilated by the time potency of the Supreme Lord. Despite our foolish hopes and dreams, there is no actual happiness on the material platform. The real truth is not material, nor is it temporary. The real truth is called atma, or the eternal soul, and among all eternal souls one is supreme. He is called the Personality of Godhead, and in His original form He is known as Krsna. The knowledge-gathering process culminates in perception of the inconceivable, transcendental form of Krsna. One who is not perceiving Krsna in everything and everything in Krsna is undoubtedly on the platform of mental concoction. In this verse Lord Krsna warns Uddhava to remain clear of this illusory platform of existence.
So this is how Kṛṣṇa is beginning to impart the knowledge. And throughout this Uddhava-gita we will find that Kṛṣṇa is making us understand what this material nature is. What is the material nature? The nature that we perceive through our senses, that is material. And in this verse Kṛṣṇa is pointing out that this world that is perceived by our senses, is temporary. Since it is temporary it is not actually real. It is illusory. In this respect one question comes: “Not real, does it mean that we are promoting Māyāvāda?” Brahma satyaṁ jagan mithyā? No, it is not real like a dream. When we are dreaming, is the dream real or not? In a dream you are seeing that somebody made you a king or a queen. How do you feel? Don’t you feel that you have become a king or a queen? Or in a dream if a tiger comes to devour you, how do you feel? Don’t you feel scared? So is that dream real when you are dreaming? It is real when you are dreaming. Now this is also like a dream. This is a special dream. It is real but this is a special dream. When we dream in our sleep, that dream is an individual dream. The person sleeping next to us will not see what we are seeing or what we are experiencing. That is that dream. But in this dream whoever is here will go through the same experience. So this is a real dream [laughs], a realistic dream. It is real as a dream. Only when we wake up we will find that it is a dream. But now that you are dreaming it is real. So it is a collective dream. Now whose dream is it? It is a collective dream. Whoever is here will go through the same dream. In a way we can say that this Maha-Vishnu’s dream. Didn’t Maha-Vishnu glance towards Maya and the material nature became manifest? So this is the result of Maha-Vishnus glance towards Maya. And we are going through some experiences. So in that sense it is real. But in the spiritual context it is a dream. But in these instructions Kṛṣṇa will clarify that. This is a dream but we will understand it only when we wake up. We will wake up in which reality? Generally from a dream we wake up in this physical place. We have two bodies, right? Two material bodies. A subtle material body and a gross material body. The dream takes place in the subtle material body. But then we come to our gross material body and we wake up. But beyond this gross and subtle material bodies there is another body. Which body? The spiritual body. Just as when we wake up in a gross material body the dream of the subtle material body disappears. Similarly when we will wake up in our spiritual body, this dream that we are experiencing through the gross material and the subtle material body also will disappear. That is the goal of life. Now the question is how to wake up? How to wake up? That is what we are going to discuss in next few classes.
Maybe at this point I will ask if anybody has any questions. I would very much appreciate your questions.
Paripraśnena sevayā. Paripraśnena. How is the knowledge transmitted? The seeker asks questions and the one who is situated in knowledge he answers the questions and that is how he gives the knowledge. And Prabhupāda said that two kinds of people do not have any questions. Kṛṣṇa also said that in this chapter. One who understood everything and one who did not understand anything. So we have to consider that we are somewhere in the middle of these two regions, so we should have questions.
Like Bhagavad-gītā, Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, these are all questions and answers. Upaniṣads, Purāṇa, these are all questions and answers. Okay, you have the first question:
Devotee: Bhagavad-gītā is spoken in eitghteen days?
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: No, Bhagavad-gītā was spoken by Kṛṣṇa in a flash of a moment. The battle of Kuruksetra was fought for eigthteen days. The point is Kṛṣṇa can expand time and Kṛṣṇa can contract time. The battle was just begun. The conchell was blown. So how much time was left? The conchell blown means: “Okay, the fight begins. So how much time did they have?” We have to understand that Kṛṣṇa expanded the time to speak the Bhagavad-gītā to Arjuna. Anyway, so what is your next question?
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: The relationship that Brahmā has is with Vaikuntha, Nārāyaṇa. Brahmā is not related in that way to Nanda-Nandana Kṛṣṇa. That is why we also see that Brahmā fails to recognize Kṛṣṇa. When Kṛṣṇa killed Aghasura, Brahmā was surprised, who is this Boy? But then when Brahmā saw Kṛṣṇa is sharing His food with other cowherd boys, eating each others’ jutha, then Brahmā thought: “How can Nārāyaṇa behave like this?” That’s why Brahmā tried to figure out, find out who this boy is. And he stole the cows and cowherd boys.
Now in this respect we have to remember that Kṛṣṇa comes every day of Brahmā. Still Brahmā forgets Who Kṛṣṇa is. This we have to understand is the arrangement of Yoga-maya. Now let us go back to the drama part of it. The director makes the actors play the roles, right? Yoga-maya is making everyone play his respective role. And they are just playing their roles. But these roles they are playing, not by memorizing the scripts. These roles they are playing by literally forgetting about everything else and by becoming absorbed in the roles that they are supposed to play, which is arranged by Yoga-maya.
Devotee: What happened to Devakī and Vasudeva?
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Good point. I did not mention that. Kṛṣṇa made arrangements for the others who did not go to Prabhāsa. Those Yadu-members they went back, they killed each other so to say and went back to Godhead. But the other members, those who were in Dvārakā, Kṛṣṇa asked them to go to Indraprastha where the Pāṇḍavas were. That means they actually went to Indraprastha.
Devotee: Uddhava had a… He looks like Kṛṣṇa?
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Yes, he looks like Kṛṣṇa, he dresses like Kṛṣṇa because he wears only things that have been used by Kṛṣṇa. He uses Kṛṣṇa’s remnants. Not only does he eats Kṛṣṇa’s remnants, He also picks up the dresses that Kṛṣṇa wore and he used to wear them. Therefore when Uddhava went to Vrindavan the gopis thought that Kṛṣṇa has returned, seeing Uddhava just from a distance.
Devotee: Uddhava resides in Rādhā-kuṇḍa and he is in the spiritual world. What is [Unclear] ]
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: In the spiritual world he is Uddhava, he is in Dvārakā, his situation is in spiritual Dvārakā. He is there with Kṛṣṇa all the time and the same relationship, yes.
Devotee: Just one other question, we know that many Kṛṣṇa-devotees also came in Chaitanya-lila. Did Uddhava also come in Chaitanya-lila?
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Good question. I also reflected on that. Who is Uddhava in Chaitanya-lila? I have to check it. I have not come across. Because it is Kavikarnapura in a book called Gaura-Ganesa-Dipika mentioned. But those devotees are mostly Vraja associates of Kṛṣṇa. There are some Dvārakā associates also, for example Satyabhama is Jagadananda-pandit. Brahmā is Haridas Thakur.
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: That art has been lost in this age. Because there is no proper guru to teach the Dhanur-veda in this age. Like say for example there is Brahmāstra. They would chant the mantra and release. You see: “It is an astra empowered by the mantra. And they have the devastating effect, right? Just consider if simple things like fire can have such devastating effect, sound can have such devastating effect, what to speak of this spiritual sound vibration? What kind of power does it have? Anyway, you got the Maha-mantra, you have the greatest thing. But don’t use it to shoot somebody. [Laughter]
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: The arrow means they would point it to somebody. [unclear remark by devotee] Well, [laughs] I am not an expert in that astra. The point is that they used to fight with arrows which used to be empowered by the mantra and indicated to an individual. They did not have such mass destructive effect. In today’s world they create these weapons of mass destruction. But that was not the case in those days. And those weapons were lot more powerful. And the individuals were also powerful enough to withstand those attacks.
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Yes, only Arjuna heard and Sañjaya. When Kṛṣṇa was speaking the Bhagavad-gita at the beginning of the battle of Kuruksetra, others did not hear. That’s why; it’s not that others… That is the thing. The battle already began. The conchell has been blown. So everyone is now: “Charge!” How much time is left? Between the conchell blowing and charge, right? In between that time Kṛṣṇa spoke the Bhagavad-gītā to Arjuna. Which means that Kṛṣṇa expanded the time to narrate to Arjuna. To others it was a moment, to Arjuna it was forty five minutes.
Devotee: You mentioned Nara- Nārāyaṇa. Could you explain the identity of Nara-Nārāyaṇa? [Unclear]
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Yes, Nara-Nārāyaṇa are two expansions of the Lord, they are incarnations of the Lord. And Nara literally means human being. And Nārāyaṇa means the Supreme Personality of Godhead. So in these incarnations the Lord assumed these two personalities. They reside in Badarīkā āśrama. Somewhere it has been mentioned that Kṛṣṇa and Arjuna were also the incarnations of Nara and Nārāyaṇa. Kṛṣṇa is the incarnation of Nārāyaṇa and Arjuna is the incarnation of Nara. But at the same time Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura pointed out that Kṛṣṇa asked Uddhava to go there to give them his association. Because Kṛṣṇa did not have to go to Badarīkā āśrama. They were deprived of Kṛṣṇa’s association. To compensate for that Kṛṣṇa sent Uddhava there.
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: That real Dvārakā went under the water. Nowadays the archeologists they found in the ocean there is a remain of a city. So Dvārakā was there. The Dvārakā that we are seeing is, you can say, a replica of Dvārakā. The real Dvārakā was in the middle of the ocean. The Dvārakā that we see now is on the land. But that Dvārakā, to go there, there is a thing called Bet-Dvārakā, you have to go there by boat. That is probably the remains of the original Dvārakā. Part of original Dvārakā probably remained.
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: No, Kṛṣṇa sometimes disappears from Vaikuntha. That is also explained in Brihat-Bhagavatamrita. The residents of Dvārakā miss Him. Here Vaikuntha means going back to Dvārakā, spiritual Dvārakā. Kṛṣṇa was missing and now He is asked to go back. But at the same time Kṛṣṇa is always present there. In three ways Kṛṣṇa is present. In His eternal situation in the spiritual world, through His pastimes, when He incarnates in the material world and Kṛṣṇa also resides in the heart of His devotees. A devotee when He sees Him in the heart, it is not just the heart imagining. He is seeing Kṛṣṇa as He is in His spiritual situation. Here we have to understand that Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He is the endowed with His spiritual potency. And just like Kṛṣṇa is situated in everyone’s heart at the same time Kṛṣṇa is situated in the spiritual sky. How is it possible? And it will be only possible for us to understand if we go back to the spiritual world.
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Good point. You see we have two material bodies, right? The gross material body and subtle material body. At the time of death we are free from the gross material body but the subtle material body remains and it is the subtle material body that carries the soul to the next destination. The subtle material body does not die. And according to his previous actions, karma, the subtle material body goes to or nature takes that individual to appropriate material situations. And there they go through different experiences. As I was pointing out, when you were dreaming, right? Is it real or not? When you are dreaming it is real. It becomes unreal only when you wake up. Now when we have that gross material body we wake up in the gross material body. But when we don’t have that gross material body, we have any situation to wake up to, we go through those experiences. The soul goes through all these hellish material experiences after death. This is how the nature prepares the living entity for the next body.
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Like in a dream you are seeing this is good, this is bad. In dream you are having a sweet dream or you are having a nightmare, but when you wake up, you realize it was just a dream. Our dream may be false but this dream is real. When somebody comes and beats you up it is real, you go through the pain. You go through a specific order. That’s how it is real. That’s why I said, it is an arrangement by Maha-Vishnu. An arrangement by the Supreme Personality of Godhead is real. Whatever He does is real. But it is materially real. And this material reality will disappear when we wake up in the spiritual reality. Otherwise as long as we are in the bodily context of life we are very much here and it is very much real, right? I mean how often when you are hungry you think: “After all I am not this body”?
His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: At the time of birth one develops a gross material body. A subtle material body is already there and the spiritual body is practically nonexistent. Nonexistent in the sense that it is present as a spiritual spark. But through the spiritual activities develop the spiritual body.
[Conch is blowing]
So keep your questions, if you have questions write them down and we will have lots of questions and answers sessions.
· Video–link to this lecture : http://youtu.be/g3O54DoXB-U
· Video-recording by HG Ajay Govinda Dasa.
· One regularly hears peacocks during the lecture.
· In this lecture Guru Mahārāja mentions 150 times “Kṛṣṇa”
· Transcription & Editing: Rāmānanda Rāya Dāsa