Srila Prabhupada on Srimad Bhagavatam, Part 13
BY: SUN STAFF
Feb 20, 2011 CANADA (SUN) A serial exploration of Srila Prabhupada's preaching on Srimad Bhagavatam.
In our last segment, we presented Text 1 of the First Chapter, First Canto from the original Srimad Bhagwatam, offering a few comments about the differences between the various editions. Today we will begin to explore Srila Prabhupada's preaching on SB 1.1.1, in his lectures and references to the sloka.
In Folio 2.0 (1993), we find that Srila Prabhupada gave a total of five lectures on SB 1.1.1, as follows:
London, August 6, 1971
London, August 7, 1971
New York, July 6, 1972
Caracas, February 20, 1975
Caracas, February 21, 1975
In the first of the two London lectures, there is an interesting reference at the point where Srila Prabhupada has prompted Pradyumna to read from his purport to the verse. Pradyumna asks, "Shall I take up where we left off yesterday?" Prabhupada says yes, and Pradyumna begins reading from the second sentence of the purport. However, we don't find a lecture on SB 1.1.1 from the preceding day. In the Folio for August 5, 1971, we find only a temple press conference and three letters – no class or discussion on Srimad Bhagavatam, so it's curious as to what Pradyumna referred to.
Each one of Srila Prabhupada's lectures is so full of information on the Absolute Truth, with jewel-like examples from sastra and references to contemporary events, that an attempt to document even a simple list of the precise points in a lecture would result in an article longer than the lecture itself. Nonetheless, we hope to make at least some measure of comparison of the points Srila Prabhupada makes in each lecture.
When searching in the Vaniquotes section of Vanipedia, we find many hundreds of instances where a reference to "SB 1.1.1" appears in Srila Prabhupada's body of instructions. However, a great many of the actual citations – perhaps even the majority of them – were added as parenthetical references in Srila Prabhupada's lectures and books by the BBT editors over the years. In other words, Srila Prabhupada did not always specifically state the citation, he simply quoted all or part of the sloka on many occasions.
For the purpose of this series, we will first identify the lectures Srila Prabhupada gave that were entirely focused (or nearly so) on the Bhagavatam verse at hand, and secondarily on the places where he specifically stated a reference to that sloka. In the case of the larger group of citations added later, we will focus on thematic references rather than address each one.
In his lecture from August 6, 1971, Srila Prabhupada begins with a recitation of the sloka:
janmady asya yato 'nvayad itaratas carthesv abhijnah svarat
tene brahma hrda ya adi-kavaye muhyanti yat surayah
tejo-vari-mrdam yatha vinimayo yatra tri-sargo 'mrsa
dhamna svena sada nirasta-kuhakam satyam param dhimahi
He then proceeds to mention the following (paraphrased) points, among others:
Vyasadeva is offering his obeisances to satyam param, the Absolute Supreme Truth. Everyone has to offer obeisances to somebody, but we are offering obeisances to the relative truth, not to a temporary manifestation of tejo-vari-mrdam vinimayah.
When we install the Deity, actually the eternal form of Krsna, nobody offers obeisances. Instead they'll go to offer obeisances to the dead. This is called illusion.
Krsna says in Bhagavad-gita, mattah parataram nanyat kincid asti dhananjaya - "Beyond Me there is no more superior power."
There must be the Absolute Truth. Janmady asya yatah, as it has begun, "the source of all emanations." What is that source of emanation? Krsna. One has to accept the cause and effect.
Supreme cause means who has no more cause--sarva-karana-karanam.
Lord Brahma is called pitamaha, "grandfather," because he is the original father. Innumerable Brahmas are created by Garbhodakasayi Visnu. Therefore visnu-tattva is the Absolute Truth.
We have got immense literature to understand God. Of Jiva Gosvami's six sandarbhas, Krsna-sandarbha tells what is Krsna.
Krsna is mentioned in the Vedas, including Brahma-samhita. Nobody knows how many millions of years ago this book was composed, but we understand it was composed by Brahma, on the authority of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, who found the handwritten Brahma-samhita. Mahaprabhu gives reference of Srimad-Bhagavatam with Brahma-samhita, which means Srimad-Bhagavatam also is eternal.
In Brahma-samhita the name of Krsna is there. Isvarah paramah krsnah, beginning. Brahma says, isvarah paramah krsnah sac-cid-ananda-vigrahah. So how can rascals conclude Krsna was living some hundred or five hundred years ago. Rascals write books, commentaries unauthorizedly and mislead public.
Brahma-samhita there is complete description of Krsna - cause of all causes. Janmady asya yatah.
The scientists, they are trying to find out the original cause of creation, but they are creating their own imagination. "There was a chunk, and it burst out, and then planets came out." Like that. And wherefrom this chunk came, you nonsense?
You have to take knowledge by this disciplic succession. You have to know God from a person who knows God personally.
This body, everyone knows it is a product of material creation. My father and mother created this body. Krsna says in Gita, janma karma ajo 'pi san avyayatma: "I am born," avyayatma, "eternal body; still, I take birth."
We are imprisoned here within this universe. We are thinking that we are very free to move in the sky, but you cannot violate the laws of nature, then you will create another difficulty.
In his lecture on the next day, August 7, 1971, Srila Prabhupada mentions the following (paraphrased) points:
Krsna's identification is that He is son of Vasudeva or son of Nanda Maharaja, friend of Sridama, Sudama, lover of Radharani.
The chief name is Krsna. In the Atharva Veda it is said, Krsna is the son of Devaki, Vasudeva.
You cannot give any name to God without bearing any meaning. All-attractive means Krsna is not only attractive to the devotees but to the nondevotees.
Kamsa was also attracted by Krsna. The best example of a nondevotee interested in Krsna is Kamsa. Kamsa is like the man who killed President Kennedy -- he made a plan, thinking of Kennedy always. That is attraction.
Satyam param dhimahi. Namo bhagavate vasudevaya. So Vyasadeva is offering his obeisances to the son of Devaki, all-attractive Krsna.
Krsna has got so many incarnations that you cannot even count, therefore Krsna's another name is Ananta. Ananta means "who has no end."
Vedas says Krsna is purnam, complete. What kind of purnam? If you want to take something from the complete, gradually it will reduce, and ultimately it becomes zero. So Krsna is not like that.
Brahma-samhita states goloka eva nivasaty akhilatma-bhutah. Krsna lives at His home, Goloka Vrndavana.
Krsna has direct expansion and expansion of the expansion, like Balarama, then catur-vyuha, quadruple expansions.
He's within the atom also, and scientists are perplexed to analyze one atom.
Bhagavata is trying to inform you about Krsna, beginning janmady asya... Om namo bhagavate vasudevaya. From whom everything is there -- birth, sustenance, and death--everything material can be understand by these three symptoms. Also by the sad-vikara, or six kinds of transformations. Krsna, however, is sac-cid-ananda-vigraha.
First we must understand what is Krsna, then we enter into other information about Krsna. First know what is God, then develop a relationship.
Generally religion means the process of understanding God. Religion without God is cheating religion.
Ask a great scientist, "Can you say what is God?" The reply will be, "No. We don't believe in God." They have no knowledge of God, although they are trying to study the laws of God. Krsna consciousness movement is against all this rascaldom, We say, "Here is God. Take His name. Take His address also.
In our next segment we'll break down some of the essential points Srila Prabhupada made in his New York and Caracas lectures on SB 1.1.1, after which we'll make a comparison of points repeated, and new points introduced in subsequent lectures.
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