Pradyumna: “All occupational engagements, or dharmas, are certainly meant for ultimate liberation. They should never be performed for material gain. Furthermore, one who is engaged in the ultimate occupational service, or dharma, should never use material gain to cultivate sense gratification.” [SB 1.2.9]
Prabhupāda: So Sūta Gosvāmī is describing the purpose of religiosity. Dharmasya hy āpavargyasya. Dharma, to accept a system of religion means to accept the path of liberation. Āpavargyasya. This apavarga is very significant word. Pavarga and apavarga. Pavarga means pa, pha, ba, bha, ma. In grammatical ways, ka, kha, ga, gha, ka-varga, ca-varga, ṭa-varga, ta-varga, and pa-varga. Five vargas. Vargīya varṇas. And there are antaḥ-stha varṇas. This is grammatical.
So dharmasya hy āpavargyasya. “A” means negation, negation of pavarga. Pa means pariśrama, labor. Here, in this material world, the sense gratificatory platform is not very easy. You have to work very hard. Karma. Even Arjuna was advised, śarīra-yātrāpi ca te na prasiddhyed akarmaṇaḥ: “My dear Arjuna, you are denying to fight, but you do not know that without fighting, you cannot live even. You cannot maintain your body.” Śarīra-yātrāpi. Just see how hard they are laboring. Even just like an ass. In big cities, we have seen, human beings are pulling on rickshaws, ṭhelās. What for? Simply for maintaining this body. In the Kali Yuga, the working will be more harder and harder. Just like an ass. Ass, the example is given always, ass. How much hard work it carries on. Tons of cloth, carrying on the back, going to the ghāṭa. What for? Simply little grass. That’s all. Therefore it is called ass. The ass is working simply for a morsel of grass. Grass, there are so many. You can get. But it is because it is ass, he’s thinking that “The washerman is my master. He’ll give me the grass.” Just see.
This is ignorance. It is a very good example of foolishness. Similarly, Kṛṣṇa has provided everything. Kṛṣṇa is giving food to the elephant. In Africa, there are millions of elephants, and each elephant is eating at least eighty-two pounds at a time. But who is supplying the food? They have no economic problem. They have no bank balance. How they are eating? This is to be studied. This is called nature’s study. So why you are so much busy for fulfilling the belly with a little two cāpāṭis? If the elephant can get so much food at a time, can I not get two, two cāpāṭis or four cāpāṭis? I can get also. But there is no confidence. He’s thinking that “Unless I work very, very hard, I cannot live.” The more a man is civilized, he’s thinking like that. They accuse us, these Kṛṣṇa conscious people, that “They are escaping. They do not want to work.” Not only us. Anyone… That is the allegation against the sādhus, that they are parasites, dependent on the society, eating at the cost of others. So many accusations. But actually, that is not the fact. Kṛṣṇa has provided food for everyone. Just like these birds. They’re living very peacefully in this tree, and they have no problem. The monkeys… Who is going to give? Anyone, as soon as he sees a monkey, he drives: “Get out. Get out. Get out.” But still they are living. They are eating.
So there are 8,400,000 species of life. They’re all eating at the cost of God. Why human being is so much busy for solving economic problem? Because a foolish civilization. That’s all. Everything is there. Simply you have to work little. Because this world, this material world, is made in such a way that unless you work little, you cannot get your food. That Viṣṇu Purāṇa, it is said, avidyā-karma-saṁjñānyā tṛtīyā śaktir iṣyate. Avidyā. Ignorance. (talking in background) (aside:) Ask them, not… (Hindi) Avidyā-karma-saṁjña. This material world is ignorance, darkness. Because he, people have no knowledge of that Kṛṣṇa is providing everyone food. Eko bahūnāṁ yo vidadhāti kāmān. That is the injunction of the Vedas, that one supreme one is supplying food to everyone. Eko bahūnāṁ yo vidadhāti kāmān. So Kṛṣṇa is supplying everyone. Nobody has to starve. The only business is how to develop our Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That is our only business. Tasyaiva hetoḥ prayateta kovido na labhyate yad bhramatām upary adhaḥ [SB 1.5.18]. Simply if we become engaged for economic development, fulfilling the belly, and we forget our real business, developing Kṛṣṇa consciousness, that is not very intelligent work.
Therefore it is said here, dharmasya hy āpavargyasya. To perform religious…, religiosity means how to get out of this material conditional life, apavarga. Pavarga means hard work. Pa pha. And so much hard work that there is foam in the mouth, phena. Pa pha ba. And vyarthatā. In spite of working so hard, we are confused, baffled. Pa pha ba bha. And still there is bhaya, fearfulness, “Whether it is done, or whether I shall get tomorrow, any food?” Bha. In this way, at the end, ma, mṛtyu. This is called pa pha ba bha ma-pavarga. So to take to religiosity means to get out of this pavarga. Dharmasya hy āpavargyasya. Not pavargyasya. Dharmasya hy āpavargyasya na arthāya upakalpate. We go to temple or church or mosque to get some material benefit: “O God, give us our daily bread.” The Christians pray like that. And the Hindus, they also pray, go to some demigod, or Kṛṣṇa. Mostly they go to demigod, especially to Lord Śiva, because Lord Śiva’s name is Āśutoṣa. If you please Lord Śiva, it is very easy. He’s very easily satisfied. And whatever you want, he gives you: “All right, take it.” Therefore, generally people become devotee of Lord Śiva, because easily pliable. Viṣṇu is not so easily pliable. Devī is easily pliable. Say, for a meat-eater, goes to Devī: “My dear goddess, I want to eat meat.” Devī will allow: “All right. Bring a goat and sacrifice it before me, and you eat.” But if you go to Viṣṇu, “Sir, I want to eat meat,” He’ll not allow. Therefore they are very much devotees of Goddess Kālī. Purpose is to eat meat. He’s not a devotee.
Actually, devotion cannot be applied except to Viṣṇu. Therefore Bhagavad-gītā says, kāmais tais tair hṛta-jñānāḥ yajante anya-devatāḥ [Bg. 7.20]. These rascals, who have lost of their intelligence, they go to other demigods to pray for some temporary benefit. Antavat tu phalaṁ teṣāṁ tad bhavaty alpa-medhasām [Bg. 7.23]. Now suppose if I go to Goddess Kālī to get facility of eating flesh. Then the antavat. You eat flesh and acquire so much sinful result… Because you have killed one animal, he has to kill you. You take so much responsibility. Still, your pleasure by eating flesh is finished very quickly. But if you warn, if you worship Viṣṇu, even one percent you have… Svalpam apy asya dharmasya trāyate mahato bhayāt. Worshiping the other demigods, it will be finished as soon as… I mean, suppose you go to heavenly planet. Everything will be finished, because this material world is temporary. So the benediction which you have achieved from a demigod, the demigod, the benediction, and yourself—everything will be finished. Therefore it is said, antavat tu phalaṁ teṣāṁ tad bhavaty alpa-medhasām [Bg. 7.23]. Real problem is apavarga, how to get out of this entanglement of hard labor and fearfulness. That can be given by Viṣṇu. Hariṁ vinā na mṛtiṁ taranti.
Without Kṛṣṇa, nobody can save you. Other demigods… Just like Rāvaṇa. Rāvaṇa was a great devotee of Lord Śiva. But when Lord Rāmacandra wanted to kill him, Lord Śiva’s father could not even protect him. That is not possible. That is not possible. Mare kṛṣṇa rākhe ke. (aside:) Make it little… Yes. Little… Yes. If Kṛṣṇa kills you, nobody can protect, And if Kṛṣṇa protects you, nobody can kill you. Rākhe kṛṣṇa mare ke, mare kṛṣṇa rākhe ke. This is the formula. Here it is said that dharmasya. If you want to take to religiosity Practically dharma. I have several times explained that dharma means… (aside: ) What you are doing? It is disturbing me. Yes. Don’t you see? He cannot do it. Yes. Do it. Dharma, to become religious, the purpose is to go up to the point of mukti. Dharma artha kāma mokṣa [SB 4.8.41, Cc. Ādi 1.90]. Gradually. Gradually, step by step. But generally, people stuck up for some material gain. Ārtaḥ arthārthī jñānī jijñāsuḥ. Four kinds of people approaches the Supreme Personality of Godhead for evolution, but the, those who are going to the Supreme Person for some material gain, as soon as their material gain is finished, they also finish worship. “Now I have got the money. There is no need of worshiping.”
So here Bhāgavata says that dharma… You take to, to the principles of religion for going up to the point of liberation, āpavargyasya. Dharmasya hy āpavargyasya. This is meant for getting out of this entanglement of birth, death, old age, and disease. That is real… The first step is religiosity. Unless you are pious, religious, there is no possibility of getting liberation. Therefore there are different types of dharma prescribed, twenty types of dharma. The beginning is varṇāśrama-dharma. The people have lost even varṇāśrama-dharma, what to speak of other dharmas. The first beginning is varṇāśrama-dharma, to become brāhmaṇa, to become kṣatriya, to become vaiśya. So in the Kali-yuga the time is so bad that even there is no fixity of this varṇāśrama-dharma. Nobody knows who is brāhmaṇa, who is śūdra. Because the quality is the same now, eating, sleeping, mating—animal quality. You can become a brāhmaṇa by sacred thread. That is a different thing. But there are brāhmaṇa and brahminical qualifications. That is real brāhmaṇa.
So even the varṇāśrama-dharma is lacking in this age, what to speak of other dharmas. Therefore the śāstra enjoins,
harer nāma harer nāma harer nāma eva kevalam
kalau nāsty eva nāsty eva nāsty eva gatir anyathā
[Cc. Ādi 17.21]
You cannot execute any severe type of religious principles. Simply take to this chanting of Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra. Paraṁ vijayate śrī-kṛṣṇa-saṅkīrtanam. You’ll come out triumphant. But actually, on principle, dharma means gradually, step forward for liberation. Dharmasya hy āpavargyasya na arthāya [SB 1.2.9]. We should not execute dharma for some material gain, arthāya. Just like people are very busy to give in charity, because he’ll get some exalted post. Yajña dāna tapa kriyā. These are karma-kāṇḍīyas, yajña, performing sacrifices, giving in charity, dāna, tapa, austerity. Just like Hiraṇyakaśipu underwent severe austerities, Rāvaṇa underwent severe austerity. What for? For material gain. That’s all.
So actually dharma does not mean that. Dharma means to come to the point to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. When He says, sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja [Bg. 18.66], this is dharma, real dharma. Dharmaṁ tu sākṣād bhagavat-praṇītam [SB 6.3.19]. Sākṣād Bhagavān, Kṛṣṇa, is ordering like that. That is dharma. Na arthāya. Not for material gain. People generally execute religious principles for some material gain. That is warning. Bhāgavata is warning, na arthāya upakalpate: don’t execute religious performances simply for material gain. Now material gain means money. Suppose you get money. Money, because according to previous pious activities, you get good birth, nice riches, janmaiśvarya-śruta-śrī [SB 1.8.26]. So suppose you have got money. A man is born with silver spoon in the mouth. He has got money immediately. Then what he’ll do? He’ll throw it away? No. It is said that nārthasya dharmaikāntasya kāmo lābhāya hi smṛtaḥ. If you have got money, don’t spend it for sense gratification. Kāmo lābhāya. Just like at the present moment, if anyone has got more money, he purchases more motorcars. Formerly… Suppose he had no car. He gets one car. He gets more money—another car. More money—another car. In this way, they make prescription for sense gratification. But no. If you have got more money than you require, you spend it for Kṛṣṇa. That is required. Try to satisfy Kṛṣṇa, the senses of Kṛṣṇa. Don’t try to satisfy your senses. Then you’ll be implicated. Actually the money belongs to Kṛṣṇa.
Īśāvāsyam idaṁ sarvam [Īśo mantra 1]. Everything belongs to Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa also says, bhoktāraṁ yajña-tapasāṁ sarva-loka-maheśvaram [Bg. 5.29]. He’s the proprietor. How Kṛṣṇa’s money you can spend for your sense gratification? That is sinful activities. If you take government money, government treasury, and spend it for sense gratification, immediately you become criminal. Immediately. Mā gṛdhaḥ kasya svid dhanam. You cannot touch. Human civilization… Now, at the present moment, they’re less than animal, They are getting money by hook and crook and amassing money. But not spending for Kṛṣṇa. If you go for begging something for Kṛṣṇa, “No, we are not interested in religious affairs. No. We are secular.” Nobody will pay. Now, if you go to somebody that “We are going to open a lunatic asylum and hospital for the drunkards,” then they’ll pay money. Yes. In USA, there is a big hospital for curing, curing drunkards priests. (laughter) Yes. Drunkard priests. Because they have to execute priesthood, but they are drunkard. So they want to be cured. This is a fact. They’ll give money. If you want money for Kṛṣṇa, they’ll not give money. They will… More hospitals. More hospitals. The report is “This year, we have increased so many hospital beds.” That means that is advancement. So what is this advancement? People have become sick. You just stop people becoming sick, there should be no disease. That is advancement. No. Their advancement of civilization means you open more hospitals and more beds. That is advancement.
So this is all sense gratification, kāma, for sense gratification. You give medicine to a diseased man to cure him just to make him able to enjoy senses. That’s all. But Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is that you give him medicine so that he can get out of the clutches of this material entanglement and go back to home, back to Godhead, and live eternal, blissful life of knowledge. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. So,
dharmasya hy āpavargyasya
Actually who is religious, his money is not meant for sense gratification. Formerly anyone who had money, he used to spend for Kṛṣṇa. Just like you see here in Vṛndāvana big, big temples. They were constructed by very, very rich men. They knew that “Now I have got extra money. I can spend it for Kṛṣṇa.” Just like Mahārāja Mansingh. He approached Rūpa Gosvāmī. Rūpa Gosvāmī was sitting here. Or sometimes somewhere. Rūpa Gosvāmī was famous, saintly person in Vṛndāvana. So Mahārāja Mansingh approached: “Sir, what can I do for you? I have got some money. I want to spend some money for you.” So Rūpa Gosvāmī, what he’ll do with the money? He was, he left his minister, ministerial post to come to Vṛndāvana not for earning money. So he advised him, “All right, if you have got money, you spend it for constructing a nice temple for Govindajī.” So he constructed so nice temple, seven stories. It is impossible now to construct such a temple, such nice work. But he spent, he utilized his money in that way.
So everyone can serve Kṛṣṇa. Prāṇair arthair dhiyā vācā śreya-ācaraṇaṁ sadā. Either with your life, either with your money, either with your intelligence, either with your, with your words. You can serve Kṛṣṇa. Any way. Kṛṣṇa service is not checked. Ahaituky apratihatā. It cannot be checked. In any condition of life you can serve Kṛṣṇa. The first thing is that if you can dedicate your life, that is very good. Just like you have done. You have dedicated your life for spreading this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. That is first class, prāṇaiḥ. If you cannot dedicate your life immediately, then spend fifty percent of your income for Kṛṣṇa. Prāṇair arthaiḥ. If you think you have no money, then prāṇair arthair dhiyā, by your intelligence. If you have got some knowledge, write some books and spread it, Kṛṣṇa consciousness. And if you have no education, no money and you cannot dedicate your life, then you can spend your vacana. Vācā. Prāṇair arthair dhiyā vācā. What is the vācā? Chant Hare Kṛṣṇa and tell everyone, “Please chant Hare Kṛṣṇa.” Where is the difficulty? You can serve Kṛṣṇa in any condition of life. But don’t be miser. If you think that you have got one crores of rupees, so Kṛṣṇa says, vācā. “Let the bank balance remain for my children, and I go to Vṛndāvana and chant Hare Kṛṣṇa.” No. That is called vitta-sārtha. If you have got money, you must spend money. Not that “Money is for my children and wife, and I come to Vṛndāvana and chant Hare Kṛṣṇa.” There are many such retired persons here. They leave the money for their relatives, and come here with a… Of course, that is good. But Kṛṣṇa is very intelligent. Kṛṣṇa wants to know where you have kept your money. (laughter) He inquires, “You kept your money for your children and you have come to love Me with your beads?” No. (laughter) Kṛṣṇa is very intelligent. Kṛṣṇa wants that “Whatever you have got, you have to utilize for Me.”
Just like Arjuna. Arjuna was a warrior, and he utilized his energy for fighting the demons. Because He came to kill the demons. Paritrāṇāya sādhūnāṁ vināśāya ca duṣkṛtām [Bg. 4.8]. So Kṛṣṇa wants to utilize your energy for His satisfaction. That is devotion. Everyone has got his energy, and he can spare it for Kṛṣṇa’s service. That is real devotion.
dehinām iha dehiṣu
prāṇair arthair dhiyā vācā
If you want to make perfection of your life, then whatever you have got, you have to spend it, spare it for Kṛṣṇa. Not that “The substance is for my relatives, and simply I come with lip sympathy.” No.
dharmasya hy āpavargyasya
kāmo lābhāya hi smṛtaḥ
Not for sense gratification. Don’t use your money for sense gratification. In the Bhagavad-gītā also it is said, yajñārthe karma. You are working hard not for…, do not work for hard, hard work, for sense gratification. In the, another place, in the instruction of Ṛṣabhadeva, it is said that nāyaṁ deho deha-bhājāṁ nṛloke kaṣṭān kāmān arhate viḍ-bhujāṁ ye [SB 5.5.1]. This body, this human body, is not meant for working hard like the hogs for sense gratification. But people have made it a civilization. They are working very hard, day and night, simply for sense gratification. This is compared like the hogs. You have seen so many hogs in Vṛndāvana, loitering. The whole day, they are working to find out where is stool. That is their business. So it may not be very pleasing, but these hogs, they are also living in Vṛndāvana, but why they are hogs? Because they came to Vṛndāvana and behaved like hogs. So Kṛṣṇa has given them the opportunity: “All right you live in Vṛndāvana as a hog.” We should not come Vṛndāvana to behave like hogs. What is the behavior of the hog? Sex indulgence without any discrimination. That is hogs. Hog has no discrimination whether it is mother, sister, or this or that. Any sex will do. This is hog life.
So it is the warning: arthasya dharmaikāntasya kāma… Don’t try to gratify sense in the name of dharma, religion, or bhakti. Then we have to become hogs and dogs. Even in Vṛndāvana. It doesn’t matter. Yes. Then nārthasya dharmaikāntasya kāmo lābhāya hi smṛtaḥ. Then we have got kāma. We, because we have got this body, then we must satisfy the senses. That is required. So there is sanction. Kāmasya. Kāmasya nendriya-prītiḥ. Just like sex. Sex life is allowed by the śāstra. Just like in the Bhagavad-gītā: dharmāviruddhaḥ kāmo ‘smi. “Sex life which is not against the religious principles, that is I,” Kṛṣṇa says. That means sex life should be utilized only for begetting nice children. There are certain rules and regulations. One can have sex life once in a month. As soon as the wife is pregnant, he cannot have sex life. There are rules and regulations. Not for kāmasya na indriya-prītiḥ. Not because “I want to enjoy sex life, I can use it at any time.” No. That is not. Kāmasya na indriya-prītiḥ. Kāma, there is, required. But na indriya-prītiḥ. Lābho jīveta yāvatā. You can utilize kāma as much as it is required for living condition. Not for sense gratification.
Why these are restriction? Why so much restriction? Now, because jīvasya tattva-jijñāsā nārtho yaś ceha karmabhiḥ. Because our real business is to understand Kṛṣṇa, tattva-jijñāsā. We must save time from all directions and concentrate and utilize the time simply for Kṛṣṇa consciousness.
Thank you very much. (end)