Prabhupada: My dear devotees, ladies and gentlemen, I am very glad to see you again, I think, after four years? Three years. I was trying to come here again — I like this place — but due to various engagements and due to my old age also, I could not come earlier. But this time, by the arrangement of our Hrdayananda Maharaja, I have been forced to come here. (laughter) So I must thank you for your nice reception. I was received by police escort very nicely, and I remember once I traveled with the governor of UP in 1962 from Lucknow to Kanpur. So exactly we were driving in the same fashion, escorted by the police motorcycle. So anyway, I am so pleased to see you, that you are interested in Krsna consciousness movement.
So the Krsna consciousness movement is very, very important for the human society. It is not exactly a religious movement as it is understood in the Western countries. Religion is described in the English dictionary as “a kind of faith.” Faith you may accept or may not accept, but religion is the word, as we understand from Sanskrit dictionary, it cannot be rejected. Or you and your religion cannot be separated. Therefore we should understand very clearly that we are experiencing two things: one is matter, and another is spirit. Just like there is a stone, and there is a small ant. The stone, it may be very big, but it cannot move. It has no life. But the small ant, although it is very small, it has life. So there are two things, we can very easily understand: one is dead matter, and the other is living force. We are actually living force. Living force, we are covered by the matter, and according to the different types of covering, we are representing different types of living condition. So this living force, being encaged by the dead matter, it is a struggle for existence. The living force trying to get out of the material encagement, that is called struggle for existence. The living force by nature is jubilant. The supreme living force is God, Krsna, and we are part and parcel of the living force. That is stated in the Bhagavad-gita, two kinds of energies: one material energy, one spiritual energy. The material energy is earth, water, air, fire, sky, mind, intelligence, etc., and the spiritual energy is the living force which is trying to lord it over the material energy. So (Bg. 7.5),
apareyam itas tu (anyam)
viddhi me prakrtim param
yayedam dharyate jagat
Krsna says that “This material energy is inferior, and the superior energy is the living being.” So this Krsna consciousness movement is trying to help the living being to come out of the encagement of material energy. And how to become free, that information is in the Vedic literature. So what we are giving in different literatures… We are publishing books and magazines. Simply we are trying to give information how the superior living being can get out of this material encagement.
So I am very glad to see you, so many Krsna’s part and parcel. You have come to understand Krsna consciousness. So stick to the principles, then your life will be successful. The principle is to purify ourself. Just like when a man becomes sick, he has to purify himself by regulative principle, by diet, by medicine, similarly, we have got this material disease, covered by the material body, and the symptom of miseries are birth, death, old age and disease. So one who is serious about getting out of this material bondage and free from birth, death, old age and disease, so he must take to this Krsna consciousness. It is very simple and easy. If you do not know, if you are not educated, if you have no asset, you can simply chant the Hare Krsna maha-mantra, and if you are educated, logician, philosopher, you can read our books, which are already in fifty in number. There will be about seventy-five books of four hundred pages to convince the philosopher, scientist, educationist what is Krsna consciousness. It is published in English as well as in other European languages. Take advantage of it. Along with the Deity worship in this temple, hold classes at least five hours. As in the schools and colleges there are regular classes, forty-five minutes’ class, then five or ten minutes’ recess, again forty-five minutes’ class, in this way, so we have got enough subject matter to study, and if we study all these books, to finish them it will take at least twenty-five years. So you are all young men. I request you to engage your time in reading books, in chanting, in Deity worshiping, in going to preach, selling books. Don’t be lazy. Always remain engaged. Then that is Krsna consciousness. Krsna says in the Bhagavad-gita (Bg. 9.32),
mam hi partha vyapasritya
ye ‘pi syuh papa-yonayah
striyah vaisyas tatha sudras
te ‘pi yanti param gatim
There is no discrimination that “This man should be allowed. This woman should not be allowed.” No. Krsna says, “Anyone.” Striyah vaisyas tatha sudras. Anyone who takes to Krsna consciousness, he becomes free from the material bondage and goes back to Godhead, back to home. So take seriously about this movement and execute the principle, namely no meat-eating, no illicit sex, no intoxication, no gambling, and chant sixteen rounds. That’s all right.
Now, if there are any questions from them…
Hrdayananda: (translating question) …If everyone is spirit soul, then isn’t sex life also spiritual?
Prabhupada: Well, sex life… There is no sex life in the spirit soul. Sex life is in the material body. We are not this body, but because we are in this body, therefore we are thinking pleasure of the body is pleasure of the soul. Just like when you are sitting in a nice car, if the car is damaged, the proprietor thinks that he is damaged. But actually he is not damaged; the car is damaged. It is due to our false identification with the body. Therefore we think that sex life is a pleasure. But so long we are in this body, sex life is not prohibited, but it is regulated. By regulative principle, gradually we can give up sex life. Therefore there are four orders of life. The beginning is brahmacari. There it is very nicely taught how to remain free from material encagement. But if one is unable to take immediately spiritual activity, he is allowed to marry. The married life is regulated sex life. Then, after fiftieth year, one has to give up this. So in that stage, vanaprastha stage, the wife is there, but there is no sex life. So in this way, when one becomes very strongly fit not to desire for sex life, then he takes sannyasa. That is the perfect stage of life for spiritual advancement of life.
Hrdayananda: (translating question) Who are we? Why are we here and where are we going?
Hrdayananda: Who are we, why are we here and where are we going?
Prabhupada: You are all living entities. You wanted to come here. Just like I wanted to come in your city — I have come here — similarly, you wanted to come to the material world and enjoy ma… So because you wanted to enjoy this material world, you have come here. Krsna has allowed to come here, and you are trying to enjoy this material world. That is called struggle for existence. But you’ll never be happy with this material world. It is simply a struggle for existence. Therefore you should go back to home, back to Godhead. Then you’ll be happy.
Hrdayananda: (translating question) …that material desires are an obstacle in our devotional service.
Prabhupada: By engaging yourself in spiritual activity. That’s all.
(Mexico, February 11, 1975)