His Grace Sankarshan Das Adhikari

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Lecture, Bhagavad-gita 10:11

#4 of series on four key verses of Bhagavad-gita

Denver, Colorado  USA - 17 January 2005 

om namo bhagavate vasudevaya

I would like to thank you all ladies and gentlemen very much for attending tonight's fourth lecture in our special series on the catur slokas, or four essential key verses of Bhagavad-Gita.  Those four verses are 10th chapter, texts 8,9,10, and 11.  Tonight we're wrapping up this very special lecture series.   

We've come all the way from Texas to give this special lecture series.    This is text number 11 chapter 10. 

tesam evanukampartham
aham ajnana-jam tamah
nasayami atma-bhava-stho
jnana dipena bhasvata 

SYNONYMS

teṣam — for them; eva — certainly; anukampa-artham — to show special mercy; aham — I; ajnana-jam — due to ignorance; tamaḥ — darkness; nasayami — dispel; atma-bhava — within their hearts; sthaḥ — situated; jnana — of knowledge; dipena — with the lamp; bhasvata — glowing.

TRANSLATION

To show them special mercy, I, dwelling in their hearts, destroy with the shining lamp of knowledge the darkness born of ignorance.

PURPORT

When Lord Chaitanya was in Benares promulgating the chanting of

Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/
Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare
,

thousands of people were following Him. Prakasananda Sarasvati, a very influential and learned scholar in Benares at that time, derided Lord Chaitanya for being a sentimentalist. Sometimes philosophers criticize the devotees because they think that most of the devotees are in the darkness of ignorance and are philosophically naive sentimentalists. Actually that is not the fact. There are very, very learned scholars who have put forward the philosophy of devotion. But even if a devotee does not take advantage of their literatures or of his spiritual master, if he is sincere in his devotional service he is helped by Krishna Himself within his heart. So the sincere devotee engaged in Krishna consciousness cannot be without knowledge. The only qualification is that one carry out devotional service in full Krishna consciousness.

The modern philosophers think that without discriminating one cannot have pure knowledge. For them this answer is given by the Supreme Lord: those who are engaged in pure devotional service, even though they be without sufficient education and even without sufficient knowledge of the Vedic principles, are still helped by the Supreme God, as stated in this verse.

The Lord tells Arjuna that basically there is no possibility of understanding the Supreme Truth, the Absolute Truth, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, simply by speculating, for the Supreme Truth is so great that it is not possible to understand Him or to achieve Him simply by making a mental effort. Man can go on speculating for several millions of years, and if he is not devoted, if he is not a lover of the Supreme Truth, he will never understand Krishna, or the Supreme Truth. Only by devotional service is the Supreme Truth, Krishna, pleased, and by His inconceivable energy He can reveal Himself to the heart of the pure devotee. The pure devotee always has Krishna within his heart; and with the presence of Krishna, who is just like the sun, the darkness of ignorance is at once dissipated. This is the special mercy rendered to the pure devotee by Krishna.

Due to the contamination of material association, through many, many millions of births, one's heart is always covered with the dust of materialism, but when one engages in devotional service and constantly chants Hare Krishna, the dust quickly clears, and one is elevated to the platform of pure knowledge. The ultimate goal, Vishnu, can be attained only by this chant and by devotional service, and not by mental speculation or argument. The pure devotee does not have to worry about the material necessities of life; he need not be anxious, because when he removes the darkness from his heart, everything is provided automatically by the Supreme Lord, who is pleased by the loving devotional service of the devotee. This is the essence of the teachings of Bhagavad-gita. By studying Bhagavad-gita, one can become a soul completely surrendered to the Supreme Lord and engage himself in pure devotional service. As the Lord takes charge, one becomes completely free from all kinds of materialistic endeavors. (End of purport)

om ajnana-timirandhasya
jnananjana-salakaya
cakshur unmilitam yena
tasmai sri-gurave namah 

I offer my respectful obeisances to my beloved guru maharaja, His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, who has come to me in the darkness of ignorance, and is forcing my eyes open with the torchlight of the transcendental knowledge of Vedic wisdom.

This is the fourth of the four key verses of Bhagavad-Gita.  This instruction is not only meant for Arjuna.  It is not only meant for some historical study, or some literary study.  These are very potent poignant instructions for each and every one of us.

How we can get out of this material existence, which is temporary ignorant and full of misery: this knowledge is meant to bring us to that platform of eternal existence which is completely free from all types of illusions and all types of suffering.  There's nothing more valuable.

You can have millions and millions of dollars and try to spend it in the marketplace on something so-called valuable, but it will not stack up to this.  What you're hearing right now at this very minute is the most valuable thing you can achieve in this world.  There's nothing more valuable than this.  Even in the Vedas we learn that the treasurer of the demigods is Kuvera.  The demigods have all sorts wealth, rubies, and  sapphires and diamonds and gold.  Wealth beyond our wildest imagination.  But all that wealth of Kuvera does not equal even a syllable of what we are saying.  So, this is the greatest treasure and wealth.

Krishna is saying that to show them special mercy, I dwelling within their hearts.  So, there's a person.  His name is Krishna.  He's in your heart at this minute.  He's not just on the altar.  He's not only in Goloka in the spiritual world, He's right there in your heart right now.  And what does He do?  He says I destroy with the lamp of knowledge, the darkness born of ignorance. 

The previous verse describes the qualification for one who's ignorance will be destroyed.  For one who is constantly devoted to serving Me with love, for them I will.  So this is a special perk for those who are constantly devoted to serving Him.  Of course Krishna is in everyone's heart, but this special perk is for those who are constantly devoted to Him.  Just like when one goes out to get a job, especially a job in today's corporate world, you don't only ask about the salary, you want to know what are the perks.  Do I get a nice office?  Do I get a company car?  

Here Krishna is giving the perks for being devoted to Him.  There is actually one perk here.  This perk is so good that it overrides every perk you could dream of having.  That perk is that Krishna, from within your heart, will destroy all the ignorance.  Even the Buddhists say the same thing, the root cause of suffering is ignorance.  That's a fact.   

If you're in a suffering condition right now.  Its not the external situation which is causing your suffering.  What's actually causing your suffering is your ignorance.  All you have to do, to get rid of that ignorance is to devote yourself to Krishna.  How do you do that?  That's what we're here for.  This International Society for Krishna Consciousness is here to teach you how to devote yourself to Krishna, so you can get out of the suffering of ignorance.  As Krishna points out in the Bhagavad-Gita, satatam kirtayanto mam, this chanting activity is not the activity of naοve sentimentalists.  It is the activity of those who are highly learned in Vedic wisdom: the chanting of

Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/
Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare

This chanting is an act of devotion.  The first and easiest process of devotion is to hear.  If you can find a realized soul, and hear from that realized soul that's the easy point of access.  I have my e course, so I immediately find out where the internet connection is.  We tried one here, it was difficult, so I had to find where is the easiest internet connection here in the temple so that my work goes on nicely.  In the same way, we have to find what is the easiest way to connect with Krishna.  That is most important thing we can do.  The easiest way is you have to hear from a person who is in Krishna consciousness.  This means a guru, or a highly advanced devotee of the Lord, who has actually realized the truths about Krishna.  If we hear from such a person, then it is easy for us to be connected.  What do we do after we've heard? 

The next thing is to chant.  The advanced devotee will tell us that if you chant these names, this will prove to Krishna that you're devoted to Him.  Then, from within your heart, He will completely destroy all the darkness of ignorance, which is the root cause of all suffering.  By chanting that indeed happens, now some people say well, I don't really believe that.  Every church says that if you pray to Jesus or Allah, or Jehovah, you become happy.  I think that's just a bunch of religious hocus pocus.  There are many skeptics.  There is a growing number of skeptics, because when you go the university they teach you the atheistic science.  Of course science can be taught by a theist also, just like we have a scientist here who is a theist.  But its a fact that there are people who are using science to promote atheism.  They want to deny the existence of God, and they misuse science for that purpose.   

Here we actually have a positive science.  It is a system where you can actually realize the truth as it is.  What do we do in science?  We take some powerful instruments.  Just like in your geology science, you have some powerful instruments for determining what's under the surface of the earth.  Every science has instruments, microscopes, telescopes depending on the science. 

[Aside]  What is it?  I need some water?  I'm sounding like a croaking toad?  All right.  I am so caught up in the philosophy, I was forgetting what my voice sounded like.  (laughs)  I'm not the body, but still I have to drink some water to keep the body in shape. 

Every science has its instruments.  So, what are the instruments of the bhakti science?  We have our ear and our tongue.  We also have out hands.  We can clap and do kirtan.  (claps).  These are instruments that God has given.  We don't have to invent the instruments in a laboratory.  God has already given us the ears, the tongue, the hands, a body.   We can bow down before the Deity.  We can bow down before guru.  He's given us all the instruments we need to practice this science of krishna bhakti.  If we do so, the result will be as described here.  Through science we want to move back the unknown, and have more known.  That's the whole idea of science.  We are trying to reduce the unknown things and increasing the known things. 

One science will go to this area, the chemical, another will go into different species of life, another will go into the mind, psychology science, but the beauty of the Krishna science, when you become learned in this science, you know everything.  Krishna is actually the source of everything, as He describes in the 8th verse of this chapter,  

aham sarvasya prabhavo
matah sarvam pravartate 

I am the source of everything.
 

When you have that scientific knowledge of Krishna, through the science of bhakti, by perfecting the instruments of hearing and chanting, then you will know everything by simply knowing Krishna.  We can understand what is geology, psychology, astronomy, biology, every science becomes understood, because you've captured the essence.  This is why Prabhupada, even though he had never been trained in science, could speak with learned Phds in any field of science and they were just absolutely impressed with Prabhupada's firm wisdom.  They felt enlightened and uplifted by hearing from him.  They would even talk with him about different sciences.  Prabhupada would talk with everyone.  They would just be established in his deep knowledge of everything.   

He would talk with theologins, biologists, anyone.  He could talk with a simple village man.   He knew how to talk to everyone.  Even one time in Europe, some humble villager came who had no philosophical inclination whatsoever.   He wasn't really in any state of mind to be preached to even, so Prabhupada just sang a nice devotional bhajan for him.  The man was so happy, he thanked Prabhupada, and then he moved on.  Prabhupada was very expert at knowing just how to touch the heart of every type of person, and help them move one step closer to Lord Sri Krishna. 

The spiritual master is like that. He understands what the person needs, and He engages that person in just such a way that they can get even just a little touch of bhakti in the heart.   

brahmanda bhramite kona bhagyavan jiva
guru-krishna-prasade paya bhakti-lata-bija 

It is stated in the Caitanya-Caritamrta that after wandering through the universe up and down, from the higher planets to the lower planets, one living entity who is very fortunate, receives by the combined mercy of guru and Krishna, the seed of bhakti within the heart.   

This combined mercy of guru and Krishna is very important.  You can't have Krishna without guru and you can't have guru without Krishna.  The other is that by the mercy of guru you get Krishna, by the mercy of Krishna you get guru.  They go hand in hand.  What do we get from that?  We get the seed of bhakti planted in the heart.  Once that seed of bhakti is planted, then what do we do?  It is just like when you grow some plant in your garden, what do you do?  Do you not water the plant regularly?  Do you have a garden in your house?  You do.  So you water the plants.  Also, don't you pick the weeds as well?  Yes.  

We all know that the weeds grow much faster than the plants.  They will choke out the plant and steal all the fertilizer which you put in the soil.  When the seed of bhakti is planted in our heart, we have to water that seed, and how do we do that?  By regularly coming to the temple, by reading Bhagavad-Gita.  Everyone should have a copy of this Bhagavad-Gita.  If you don't have one, then devotees here can arrange for you to get one.  By regularly studying the Bhagavad-Gita and by regularly chanting

 Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/
Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare
 

When guru and Krishna give us this seed of bhakti, then we have to chant, we have to read, and we have to regularly come to the temple to associate with the devotees.  If we also avoid sinful activities like smoking and drinking and illicit sexual connection and meat-eating, which are the weeds, which will choke out the creeper, give up sinful activity and chant God's holy names, then we will find an amazing awakening in the heart.  Krishna is burning off all of the ignorance which means that all of the suffering is going away. 

We've actually been suffering for millions of lifetimes.  We actually hear people say sometimes that I would like to know what I was in my lifetime.  But actually, maybe we wouldn't want to know what we've been through in previous lifetimes, depending on our karma.  The most important thing is to take, wherever we are right now, and make it perfect, by surrendering ourselves to Lord Krishna.  Krishna is our eternal Lord and master.  He is there in the spiritual world right now, waiting for us to come back.  When will My lost children come back to Me?  They somehow foolish wandered away from home, like a teenager who runs away from home.  Actually, we are all runaways.   

We ran away from our father, Lord Sri Krishna.  We thought, I think I'll see if I can be happy living outside of my home with Lord Krishna.  Sometimes a child in ignorance foolishly thinks that he can somehow be happier if he runs away from home.  Of course, many of the parents nowadays aren't very good, and maybe they are better off running away from home, but Krishna is a good parent.  He's a good parent.  We were foolish to run away from home, and come here in this samsara loka, the place of birth and death.   

Krishna knows we're His runaway children, therefore He personally comes.  Isn't it so?   

yada yada hi dharmasya
glanir bhavati bharata 

He comes here to rescue us, and He sends His representatives.  All these great acaryas, they're all great representatives sent by Krishna.  So, India's a very special place in the world because this is where Krishna personally comes, and this is where the acaryas appear.  Of course, an acarya can be anywhere.  They travel all over the world.  It's not that they're only in India.  Prabhupada proved that.  He was the first fully realized acarya who spread this Krishna consciousness all over the world.  He is created now many many acaryas who are situated and traveling all over the world to give this knowledge so that the people can wake up from their suffering condition in the material illusion of I am this body.  

This is our basic problem.  Now we're misidentifying with our bodies.  We're thinking, I'm American, I'm Russian, I'm white, I'm black, I'm Indian.  But if we can simply realize that I'm not the body, I'm an eternal spiritual being, the body may get sick, may get old, may die, but I don't.  I'm not subject to birth, death old age and disease.  It has nothing to do with me, the atma within.  I may have a shirt, and after a while it may get worn out and I have to throw it away basically.  But, I'm not the shirt.  The body will eventually wear out, but its not me.  I give up one shirt and put on another shirt, so we've been going from one body to another body, but as long as we identify that I am this body, then we're forced to take another one and another one and another one. 

If we can realize that I'm not the body.  I'm the eternal servant of Krishna.  Then, for us there is no more birth.  Krishna promises this is the Gita.  He says punar janma na vidyate: they never take birth again.  Krishna has given His promise, His word, His assurance to us.  All we have to do to get free from all the suffering in material existence, and make this our last lifetime in this material world, is to fully dedicate ourselves to Krishna. 

Krishna is so beautiful.  His flute playing is so sweet.  We try to enjoy music in this world, but once we hear the sweet music of this world, we will no longer be attracted to any music in this material world.  It won't appeal to us anymore.  Not the Bollywood theme songs, not the western music.  Once we hear Krishna's flute, there will be no attraction whatsoever for any of this music in the mundane world.  Of course, we have to become pure devotees to hear that.  It is going to be well worth it.  It will be the most beautiful music we've ever heard in our life when we actually hear Krishna playing on His flute. 

Krishna now has manifested His wonderful mercy upon us in the form of this Bhagavad-Gita knowledge, and His dearmost devotee, His Divine Grace, A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada.  We take advantage of this wonderful mercy of Krishna.   Take shelter of the bhakti process of chanting, hearing, associating with devotees.  Then, very quickly we will enter into that state of consciousness, known as Krishna consciousness, where there's no suffering, no illusion and no anxiety.   

Are there any questions? 

Guest 1:  You talk about suffering suffering suffering, but a person may think that there is no suffering.

SDA:  This is a very good question.  You're wondering that how is it that I'm not really suffering, so what's the real situation.  Right?  That's the question.  Now, we do see that there are three modes of material nature.  Goodness passion and ignorance.  Persons who are fixed in the mode of goodness are very pious.  Actually, they're generally speaking, very happy in this material world.  That's a fact.   

Many people from India, for example, are very pious.  They're vegetarian, they pray regularly.  They try to be kind to everyone.  So, they have a certain happiness, by their piety.  But, Krishna says dukhalayam asasvatam.  This material world is a suffering place and its temporary.  So, even if someone is very very pious, who is entitled to a lot of material happiness, Krishna blesses them with nice children, who are well behaved, with a good job, with nice prestige in society, even such a person, whose life is, for the most part, sukha, or happiness, they still have to face the reality which is asasvata, it is temporary. 

To know, deep down that even if I have a nice wonderful happy situation right now, to know that I'm going to lose it, that is actually another type of anxiety.  It is gnawing away inside the heart to know that I'm going to lose this at any time.  So, that's why transcendental happiness is the permanent, true, lasting happiness.  

If I can base my happiness on a loving relationship with Krishna, that relationship will never be broken by anything.  Nothing can take that away.  That's eternal.  That will bring me to the position of total complete happiness.  Even the happiness of a very pious person is sometimes disturbed  We see pious people sometimes undergo some horrible thing in their family.  They wonder, I am so good, why did this happen to us?  Our dear child was killed in an automobile accident.  Why did this happen to us?  They're very confused.  They were very happy, and now they're so unhappy.  They don't know why this happened to them.   

They don't realize that actually the law of karma is always at work.  For every pious and every impious activity we perform in this past, a reaction will come, sooner or later.  So, even if we are happy now, we may have some bad karma just waiting to come.  But, if we surrender to Krishna, this is the beauty of surrendering to Krishna, then all of our karma is erased.  Complete surrender to Krishna wipes out all our past karma.  You don't have to worry about some reactions coming from past activities.  Just by engaging in Krishna consciousness, Krishna then rewards you.  According to your degree of surrender, He bestows all blessings upon you. 

One should not be fooled by material happiness, which is a result of good karma, which will eventually be exhausted.  When it is, you have to take the reaction for your impious activities.  The insiders secret is to not engage in anything impious and to simply engage in krishna bhakti.  That way there's no karmic reactions from anything that you do.  You don't create any new karma, and all past karma is completely eliminated.  Krishna guarantees that.  He says  

aham tvam sarva-papebhyo
mokshayishyami ma sucah 

He says I'll just wipe out all your past karma, and give you a clean slate, a clean bill of health.  Don't worry, just surrender to Me completely.   

Questions more?   

Guest 2:  Sometimes there's the academic approach.  Getting an education, getting a good job, raising a family.  That seems like it increases you materialistic or worldly responsibilities.  So, that seems like its pushing you away from Krishna.  So, is that something you should do, or shouldn't do? 

SDA:  We'll first explain in terms of classical vedic culture, then how to apply that today.  In classical vedic culture, at the age of five, the young boy goes to gurukula.  He studies under his guru until he is 25 years old.  20 years of training.  Then, because he's properly trained now, how to be fixed in Krishna bhakti, then whether he decides to be grhasta and pursue some occupation and have a family or if he wants to stay a brahamacari and be a sannyasi, it doesn’t matter, because he has very good training as a brahmacari, he can go either way and be fine.  He can take up a career profession in the vedic culture and be purely fixed in Krishna consciousness.   

What do we do now that we don't the brahmacari training?  We immediately talk mundane subject matters.  We do a little prayer, a little puja maybe, but there's no solid training in vedic knowledge now.  So, that's why we have our classes here.  We make up for lost time.   Better late than never.  The ideal situation in the modern context is become fixed in Krishna consciousness, take shelter of the guru, just like you would have as a brahmacari.  Consult the spiritual master because he will study your nature, and your personality.  He'll tell you what is best.  In most cases its, getting a career, get a job.  But there are some rare cases where someone actually would be better suited to study vedic wisdom and become a preacher of Bhagavad-Gita.  That's more rare.    

For most people, we recommend you go to the university, get a good education and get a nice job and be a good member of our Hare Krishna movement.  You can continually be reminded of this knowledge, this wisdom, so that you will not be polluted by the materialistic atmosphere of a university or a corporate world situation.  Its very mundane.  Everywhere sex sex sex sex sex sex sex.  Sex at the water coolers, everywhere sex is going on.  Sexual energy.  The colleges, the corporate world situation, so many affairs are going in.  Marriages are being broken.  People who aren't even married are having all kinds of sexual relationships.  Its a very polluted atmosphere, especially in America, but if you make yourself fixed in Krishna consciousness, you take shelter of the bona fide spiritual master, you chant japa mala regularly, you offer your food to Krishna.  You can even have a little altar at home.  If you're married, you engage your wife also in Krishna consciousness.  You teach your kids how to be devotees.   

I have a very nice disciple in back in Austin.  He comes to the temple as often as he can.  He brings his little boy with him.  Even as a little baby, every time the father would offer obeisances, he would lay his baby boy on the floor, also offering obeisances.  The baby doesn't even know what's going on, only that his father lays him down on the floor, and picks him up again.  But as he gets older, when he sees his father bow down, he bows down also, automatically.  He knows that this is the time to bow down. 

In this way, if you're a family man, or a renunciate, it doesn't matter.  Whatever you have, you use it all for Krishna.  Just engage everything in Krishna's service, it doesn't really matter whether you are a brahmacari living in the ashram, or a sannyasi traveling all over the world preaching.  Whether you're a guru taking disciples, or whether you're a corporate professional, whatever situation Krishna has placed you in, use it in His service and you become perfect. 

We were studying yesterday at the home program, the actual duties of the different orders.  The vanaprasthas have to go to the forest and dress in tree bark.  These are not very practical now in this time.  Especially in the cold winters here in Colorado.  Can you imagine just wearing tree bark?  Krishna consciousness, krishna-bhakti is so beautiful and wonderful, even without doing all of these different rules and regulations, the different orders of vedic culture, just chanting Hare Krishna, hearing from the sadhus, you can achieve pure devotion without worrying about all of these different rules of the different social orders.   

Don't worry whether you're a sannyasi or a grhasta.  Whatever position you have now, just use it for Krishna.  Are you married?  Are you a student or a single professional.  You're a single corporate professional.  You just use that position for Krishna.  Being a corporate professional means that there is some income.  Use whatever you earn to cover your personal needs, and whatever extra money you have, use to help push on this Krishna consciousness movement.  Preaching requires money.  Someone has to pay for the utilities, the printer for the books, there are so many expenses.  You can be a valuable servant and help Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu's movement go forward. 
Work your job, live comfortably.  Whatever excess is there, you donate that money to help the Krishna consciousness movement spread all over the world.  This is a missionary movement which is meant to educate the entire world.  You can assist that mission.  By remaining in the corporate world, and giving some portion of your earnings to help, that will be very valuable and wonderful thing for you to do.  Arjuna was also a professional.  He was saying he should give up his job and just be a sadhu.  Krishna said No, I want you to use your profession for Me.  You may do your profession, but offer the fruits to Me.  Fight the battle.   

Your battle is in the corporate world.  Every Monday morning.  You fight your battle of Kuruksetra every week and give as much as you can, the fruit of your fight to Krishna's service directly.  That way, you become perfect, just as Arjuna became perfect.   

Other questions? 

Guest 3  What about personal practice. 

SDA:  Personal practice, yes.  You get the japa mala.  Do you have a japa mala?  Make sure he gets one.  Show him the japa mala, you get a japa mala.  Every day you chant one and a half to two hours on the japa mala, 16 rounds.  You should do a daily meditation of chanting the Hare Krishna mantra.  Follow our principles, which you may be doing already.  No illicit sex, no intoxication, no meat-eating, no gambling.  Do you cook your own food at home?  Oh, so you live at home with your parents?  Oh their visiting.  We have a nice Hare Krishna temple in Chicago, do you go there?  Near Evanston.  The Deities, you wouldn't believe.  You think Radha Govinda are beautiful.  Wait until you see Kisore Kisori.  Your heart will absolutely melt.  I'll be coming to Chicago also.  I have a disciple in Chicago and in others getting ready to become a disciple.  If you give me your contact information, we can look you up, when we come to Chicago.  We will give you more personal instructions if you like.  We don't want to impose on you, but if you would like that, we can.   

Chant every day on the japa mala, you offer your food to Krishna before you eat.  Just by that eating, you're making spiritual progress.  When food is offered to Krishna its transformed from material energy to spiritual energy.  Just by putting that food in your mouth, your whole body becomes body and your brain becomes purified.  With that purified brain you can actually understand the transcendental knowledge that is being spoken here.  What does Krishna really mean when He says, I destroy, with the shining lamp of knowledge the darkness born of ignorance.  You'll actually realize exactly what He's talking about.  You'll become the happiest person in the whole company.   

You come to work shining.  You'll be like a shining lamp in a corporation full of ignorance.  People will wonder, that I know.  I have a Godbrother that was working in a corporation.  There was another person sitting beside him.  Some kind of consulting company.  He was a devotee.  Every day he would bring a Bhagavad-Gita, and would just sit it on his desk.  He was actually from India.  His name was Naveen Krishna Dasa.  He would sit there every day and put the Bhagavad-Gita on his desk.  This workers name was Randy Meyer.  Randy would every day sit there, and was looking at this Bhagavad-Gita and wondering, what is this?  Naveen was preaching to this.  Now Randy Meyer is no longer Randy Meyer, his name is Ramiya Dasa.  He also became a disciple.  Just because somebody is working in the same corporate job, sitting nearby the desk, he took the Bhagavad-Gita and laid it on the desk.  His neighbor read a few lines on his break.  He was just wondering, what is this Bhagavad-Gita.   

This way, if you become fixed in Krishna consciousness, then people, will notice that there's something different about you.  You have some peace, some joy, that we do not have.  Can you tell us please, tell us how do you get all this peace.  You say, well, you really want to know?  Yes.  Yes.  Tell me.  You sure you really want to know?  Alright, every day I chant the holy names of God.  I read this Bhagavad-Gita, I go to the Hare Krishna temple.  Oh really?  Will you take me with you?  Oh, yes.  You can come with me.   

In this way, if you can have a wonderful happy life, as a representative of Krishna.  If you will place in yourself, the lotus feet of Krishna, as His humble servant, then He will bless you that you can actually be His emissary in this material world.  You can represent Him.  That will give you the greatest joy and happiness.  Even in the midst of your corporate job.  You can show yourself to be an ideal saintly person, while you do your work.  When Prabhupada was a young man, he also was working a corporate job.  Actually, because of some connection his father had, he graduated from college, being about 22 years old, he was made the manager of a whole chemical factory.  Can you imagine?   

Prabhupada said that whatever I did, I was very expert.  The owner of the factory, Dr. Bose, was so very impressed, thinking that this person is very expert.  Prabhupada did everything expertly.  This is one of the qualities a person who is expert.  A Krishna conscious person becomes very expert, even in material things like their job.  By becoming Krishna conscious, you'll find that you become better at your job also.  Not like you can't function in the material world anymore if you become Krishna conscious.  Actually, if you become Krishna conscious, you become more expert than the other workers in the corporation.  You'll probably get promoted. 

Bhaktivinoda Thakura, one of our great acaryas, was in the employ of the British government.  He was the best worker they had.  Any time they had a big problem, they would send Bhaktivinoda Thakura to take care of it.  He was a magistrate.  The other magistrates would take so long to make the judgments.  He would be finished in a matter of minutes.  Everyone else would be toiling on with their day and he would be finished and go home early because he could do it with such expertise.  If you become Krishna conscious, offer your food, go to the temple, they're on Lunt Ave, you'll find that you'll become very expert.  You'll be able to accomplish things better, in less time.  You'll become so much appreciated by the bosses there.  You'll be a lot more peaceful at the job because of being expert.  At the same time, krishna bhakti will be expanding in your heart more and more and more and more and more.  You'll become the happiest person in the world by expanding your Krishna consciousness. 

If there's no questions, we can stop here.  No further questions.  We've been going now for almost an hour, fifty minutes and twenty seconds.  Srimad Bhagavad-Gita ki Jaya!  Srila Prabhupada ki Jaya!  Hare Krishna.   

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Transcribed by His Grace Jagannatha Dasa

Index of Transcribed Lectures