The following is a lecture given by His Holiness Jayapataka Swami on November 11th, 1982 in Sridham Mayapur. The class begins with a reading from the Srimad-Bhagavatam 4th Canto, Chapter 1, Verse 59 with Bengali translation.
Jayapataka Swami: tāv imau vai bhagavato
Devotees: tāv imau vai bhagavato
Jayapataka Swami: harer aṁśāv ihāgatau
Devotees: harer aṁśāv ihāgatau
Jayapataka Swami: bhāra-vyayāya ca bhuvaḥ
Devotees: bhāra-vyayāya ca bhuvaḥ
Jayapataka Swami: kṛṣṇau yadu-kurūdvahau
Devotees: kṛṣṇau yadu-kurūdvahau
Jayapataka Swami: Translation by His Divine Grace, Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada That Nara-Narayana Rsi, who is a partial expansion of Krsna, has now appeared in the dynasties of Yadu and Kuru, in the forms of Krsna and Arjuna respectively, in order to mitigate the burden of the world.
Narayana is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and Nara is a part of the Supreme Personality of Godhead Narayana. Thus the energy and the energetic together are the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Maitreya informed Vidura that Nara, the portion of Narayana, had appeared in the family of the Kurus and that Narayana, the plenary expansion of Krsna, had come as Krsna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, with the purpose of delivering the suffering humanity from the pangs of material burdens. In other words, Narayana Rsi was now present in the world in the forms of Krsna and Arjuna.
Jayapataka Swami: So here, many technical informations are being provided about the nature of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and His part and parcel living entities. (Bengali) One is it describes that in this particular incarnation, They come in two forms, Nara and Narayana. Nara is a form of a human being, and Narayana is the form of God. (Bengali) So the Nara is the portion of Narayana, the human being is a portion of God. (Bengali) In other words, he is part of the Absolute Truth. (Bengali) Just like there is the sun and the sunlight, both are always together. (Bengali) You see, what is the meaning of sun if it has no light or heat? (Bengali) But the very simple example is given that if the sun comes into our room… the sun light, we can feel the presence of the sun, we don’t say the sun is in our room, it’s the sunlight. So there is difference between the light and the sun, although they are connected. (Bengali)
(Aside to the translator)
That’s completely opposite to what I said.
You don’t say the sun is in your room, you don’t say it.
Translator: We don’t say?
Jayapataka Swami: No, you don’t say. (Bengali)
Although we can feel that the connection with the sun… the sun’s not there. (Bengali) Anyway, the other thing that is mentioned here is that when Nara Narayana came that was thousands and thousands of years before the time of Krishna. But this Bhagavatam was being spoken while Krishna was still on the planet. So they are saying that the same Nara and Narayana have come in the forms of Krishna and Arjuna. (Bengali) When this particular discussion was going on. (Bengali)
Translator: Then Krishna was (inaudible) at the same time?
Jayapataka Swami: Here Krishna and Arjuna are at the same time, on the planet. (Bengali) Arjuna said… Krishna told Arjuna, “You were present when I was speaking to the sun god, the science of the Bhagavad-gita.” And then Arjuna replied, “How is that possible?” (Bengali) He said “The sun god, Vivaswan is senior in birth to You. How am I to understand that in the beginning You instructed this science to him?” This is Text 4 of Chapter 4 of the Bhagavad-gita. (Bengali)
So Krishna replied
bahūni me vyatītāni
janmāni tava cārjuna
tāny ahaṁ veda sarvāṇi
na tvaṁ vettha parantapa
Translation: The Blessed Lord said: Many, many births both you and I have passed. I can remember all of them, but you cannot, O subduer of the enemy! (Bengali) So this is the difference that the soul… individual spirit souls are ever existing, they are never destroyed, so also Krishna, but Krishna never forgets, but we forget. (Bengali) Krishna says in the Bhagavad-gita:
vāsāṁsi jīrṇāni yathā vihāya
navāni gṛhṇāti naro 'parāṇi
tathā śarīrāṇi vihāya jīrṇāny
anyāni saṁyāti navāni dehī
That as a person puts on new garments giving up old ones similarly the soul accepts new material bodies giving up the old and useless ones. (Bengali) So actually in this material world there is a very great duality in that although we are not the body and no matter what we do to make the body satisfied, you see we won’t be satisfied because we are not the body, we are the spark of light in the body, the consciousness which is making the body alive. (Bengali) So today the modern world does not at all have the slightest clue about this spiritual understanding as given in the Bhagavad-gita and the Srimad-Bhagavatam. (Bengali) So instead of trying to realize the consciousness which is beyond the body, instead of trying to realize the permanent truth, everyone is simply engaged in satisfying the body in increasing the body’s comforts. (Bengali)
I saw a big exhibition at the Walt Disney World which is called the Epcot, the uh… the world of the… the world of the future. There they are trying to show that by modern technology man has reached perfectional stage… the perfectional stage.
Nevermind. Just brief. (Bengali)
No they’ve already reached the perfectional stage. (Bengali) Oh yeah, they’re perfect. Don’t you know it? (Bengali) and they are going more perfect. So this is the thing in that in the attempt to enjoy the… to enjoy the senses more and more, practically speaking the tempo has increased to practically a mad race and no longer is there any direction that one can see beyond simply satisfying the senses and the economic needs of the moment. (Bengali) Instead we can see that in their plans to be happy they are actually making the world a more terrible place to live in. (Bengali) Recently the nuclear control department of, I believe it is the United Nations or the American government, they said by the year 1990, within the next eight years there is a 2% chance that there will be a major nuclear accident which will kill a minimum of 100,000 people. Recently when I was in New Orleans one man took his girlfriend… one driver of the train took his girlfriend on the train and they were drinking together and she was on the driving seat. She made a wrong turn on the track and derailed the whole train. Seventeen chemical cars were overturned and the whole city had to be evacuated: 100,000 people. (aside)
Chemical, chemical cars. (Bengali) And that chemical was so dangerous that if anyone breathed it they would immediately die. So the scientists, they are taking their money to do the whims of the big industrialists and they are trying to make so many plans but we see that the world is becoming a more and more dangerous place to live in. (Bengali) You see, but the actual solution is that the people in the world have to change their consciousness to actually become habituated to a more natural way of life. (Bengali) You can’t blame the scientists or the industrialists because after all people are buying the things from them. (Bengali) They’re making what the people want to buy. (Bengali) You see, so unless the people themselves learn to lead a more natural way of life, there is no possibility of changing the course of the world. (Bengali)
Of course the way they are heading now, a war in which the present-day civilization will be destroyed is very imminent and then they will forced to live a natural way of life or die. (Bengali) So even if someone sees that, “Well, there are defects in society.” unless someone has actually spiritual knowledge and is actually trying to become self realized then the person cannot help simply serving the senses which means that one will be forced into this whole rat race and into the whole illusory activities. (Bengali)
So it says here that the avatara, the Supreme Lord descends into the material world for the purpose of delivering the suffering humanity from the pains of material burdens. (Bengali) So similarly Caitanya Mahaprabu who appeared here in Mayapur dhama, He came especially to deliver the people of this iron age of machines. (Bengali) One time Srila Prabhupada told one of his secretaries, that we can all live at… when the secretary was complaining that there is going to be a war and so much difficulty, what to do? The Prabhupad said we can all live on the side of the Ganges river here in Mayapur and chant Hare Krishna. (Bengali)
He said, “No, no, no, that’s not possible! We can’t live outside of the city; I am too used to the… I’m too used to the machines. If I can’t hear a refrigerator at night, I won’t get to sleep!” (Bengali)
Prabhupad said, “Yes, you Westerners, you are addicted to machines.” (Bengali) He said, “There is a story in Bengal which I could tell you.”
(aside) (Bengali) let’s come on with the sentence. Just… you’ve got to say it quick, short. Don’t just space out.
“One time there was a grihastha, householder, and he was calling the people, if anybody was hungry... It is the Vedic custom that if anybody is hungry then the householder before taking his own meal, he should feed the… any hungry person. (Bengali) Actually people complain that there is… you can see in the Vedic civilization there was no need for Social Security or for uh, Welfare checks. If anybody was really hungry, well… if everybody is inviting anyone on the street to take a meal, obviously there is only a few percent of the people that are hungry, then automatically the society itself picks up the burden. (Bengali)
That’s the complete opposite. (inaudible)
So there was one fisherman who was there carrying his basket. He said, “Well, I haven’t eaten yet.” (Bengali) So then the man said, “Alright, come in but leave your basket outside, it smells so bad!” (Bengali) So he brought in the fisherman and in the courtyard he fed that man sumptuously. (Bengali) Then he asked the man that whether he has any place to stay there for the night? (Bengali) He said, no, I don’t have any place to stay. (Bengali) He said, please, you stay here tonight. (Bengali) So then pers… the fisherman went to sleep and the householder went to sleep. (Bengali) In the middle of the night the call of nature caused the householder to get up about one in the morning and he saw that that fisherman was turning and tossing and turning and wasn’t sleeping properly. (Bengali) He, “What’s the matter, why are you not sleeping?” (Bengali)
Said, “I just can’t get to sleep.” (Bengali)
“Why, why, why are you not able to sleep?” (Bengali)
So then he said, “Well, always my whole life, I always had my basket with me and without smelling my basket I can’t get to sleep! (Bengali) Without smelling the rotten fish I can’t get to sleep!” (Bengali)
So then the householder said, “Alright, bring in your basket, I don’t want a guest to be inconvenienced in my house.” (Bengali) Then immediately the fisherman could get to sleep. So Prabhupad was telling this story and he started laughing, “Ha, ha!” Slapping his leg he said, “You westerners, you are just like this, you can’t smell some oil, some machine, you won’t get to sleep!” (Bengali) So actually all that needs to be done is simply to change the reference point. Once we understand we are not the body, immediately everything changes. (Bengali)
Just like they have a saying, do you eat to live or live to eat? (Bengali) So in this way, whether… right now people are living to eat, they are living just to enjoy the body, but actually the body is meant to be used in order that we can live eternally by realizing our soul, by realizing Krishna, by realizing the spiritual truth. (Bengali) You see, the first thing that a human being should ask is, “Who am I?” (Bengali) And then by proper intellectual contemplation one can easily understand that we are not this body. (Bengali) Just like if… if we bind our arm with a tournequette, a rope then suddenly we lose all the feeling in our arm as soon as we cut off the blood circulation. (Bengali) So at that time practically speaking the hand is dead. (Bengali)
The Bhagavad-gita says that the jiva-atma, the spiritual spark is situated in the heart and through the blood the consciousness is expanded out… throughout the body. (Bengali) Actually this body is dead, it’s made alive only because the spiritual energy is there in the body. (Bengali) Body is a intricate machine produced by the material energy. (Bengali) You see, but the actual energy source, the power pack that is in the form of the spiritual energy. That is who we are, we are the spiritual energy. (Bengali) Death is simply when that spiritual spark leaves the body, then the body is no longer activated. (Bengali) Every body goes through six changes. It is described in the Vedas that once the soul enters into a seed or an embryo or an egg depending on the type of life it is, then from that point, it goes through six changes. (Bengali) First there is birth, then there is growth, (Bengali) then there is uh, maintaining for some time, (Bengali) produces by products, (Bengali) children for instance, (Bengali) then it decreases, (Bengali) then finally death. (Bengali) You see, from death then the soul is again freed from the body and then the subtle mental body goes on and again enters into another ovum or into another womb and again starts the whole transition again. (Bengali)
So if we live simply to maintain this particular body that is said to be the greatest foolishness (Bengali) because this body is bound to be finished sooner or later. (Bengali) Instead we have to keep the body healthy, keep the body well kept, but devote all our spare energy beyond that for understanding the real spiritual nature of our existence, the eternal nature of our existence, scientifically. (Bengali) You see, otherwise in this material world there are three modes and these three modes, they take the consciousness of the conditioned, materialistic… materialistically conditioned souls to different mentalities. (Bengali)
Mode of goodness is where one wants to help other people, one wants to do good works. (Bengali) Mode of passion creates a mentality where one simply wants to work for one’s own immediate interest or for the interest of one’s family or nation for profit. (Bengali) And the mode of ignorance, that’s when one becomes bitter and angry and becomes disgusted with different things and so they get absorbed in intoxication or in anger or in uh, vengeance or just different kind of bitterness, madness. (Bengali) You don’t find one person that just has one of these qualities; generally you find a mixture, different percentages of each. (Bengali) But all these three consciousnesses, they are all on the bodily platform doing good for other people’s bodies, getting profit for one’s own body or just being disgusted over the miseries and pains, and the uh, misuse of the body. (Bengali)
You see, so this Krishna consciousness movement because the vision is completely beyond the bodily platform, we are talking about the actual spiritual energy or the living force which is propelling all these bodies, therefore, this has nothing to do with the whole material world at all. (Bengali) Actually this is the reason why human beings have got enhanced intelligence, is to go beyond this material duality, the material uh, illusion and see the real permanent basis.
So if a person simply wastes his life trying to chase after the different whims of the body it is considered that the life is completely just… it’s completely wasted. It is completely misuse of the opportunity of a human birth. (Bengali) So here in India the basic original culture was all based upon achieving spiritual realization. (Bengali) Because when people know that we have another life after this they naturally think about the next life equally or more than the present life. (Bengali) Nowadays of course the influence of the present artificial age is so strong that here even though the customs are maintained, the underlying philosophy to a large extent has been gradually forgotten.
Here in India. (Bengali) So the thing that we have to do in India is simply to remind the people the philosophy. They already have the basic understanding but they have forgotten the philosophy. They have forgotten the spiritual knowledge. (Bengali) You see, even if somebody knows, it is like a theory. They really don’t believe in it anymore because of the Western influence. (Bengali)
…the philosophy to the west and we very willingly took it up because we were looking for something better and when we practice it immediately we got an effect, immediately we could feel the difference. (Bengali) So when someone practices then you can get the effect. Just giving lip service won’t do anything. (Bengali) Who worships Krishna, who does the practical self realization, he will be elevated. And those who are talking about it or don’t know anything about it, they are simply under the material influence. They won’t be able to see beyond the material illusion. (Bengali) So even if somebody here has spiritual… some philosophical understanding, they don’t practice, they don’t apply it, they won’t get the actual benefit, here or anywhere. (Bengali) The Bhagavad-gita therefore says that greater than knowledge is actually performing the sacrifice, performing the practical self realization process because that is the fruit of knowledge. (Bengali)
So in conclusion, therefore because it is so difficult in the present artificial age to find any ideal circumstance to practice self-realization, a very simple process has been given which can be practiced anywhere, anytime, anyplace by anyone. (Bengali) Whether you are on top of the mountain or whether you are at the bottom of the pit, anyone can practice the process given by Lord Caitanya. (Bengali) Somebody desires, anybody can chant
Hare Krishna Hare Krishna
Krishna Krishna Hare Hare/
Hare Rama Hare Rama
Rama Rama Hare Hare
(Bengali) It is not very difficult. (Bengali) Look at the children, even the children are able to chant. (Bengali) You see, any part of the world, whether it is China or America or anywhere, as soon as someone starts to seriously practice the meditation, reads Bhagavad-gita, they can immediately feel contact with the spiritual energy. (Bengali) But if somebody, even if they may be with devotees or they may know the philosophy, if they don’t actually chant, if they don’t actually concentrate on the form of self-realization, then they’ll always remain distant from actual understanding of what is really going on outside of the material purview. (Bengali)
Lord Caitanya is saying… jiv jago, jiv jago, gaurachanda bole, kotha nidra jao maya pisachira kole. “Wake up, wake up sleeping souls, why are you sleeping on the lap of the witch Maya?” Maya means material illusion. Wake up from this illusion. See what it is beyond this temporary world. (Bengali) So it is up to us to wake up. If we are woken up we can wake up but if we are already awake and we are making believe we are asleep then it is very hard to wake that person up, you see. It’s impossible. (Bengali) If a person can already see that the material world is definitely illusion, can already see there has to be something beyond it but still just due to attachment, just due to some uh, artificial attachment, due to some uh, lethargy or some other type of material hang up, is just neglecting to actually try to go into the spiritual-realization, in other words the person is awake already to the illusion but is pretending to be asleep, you cannot wake that person up. He is not sincere. He is a hypocrite. (Bengali)
So that is why Lord Caitanya, actually His mercy is for everyone. Anyone can become very advanced in self-realization, can realize the self, can realize God, the Supreme Person, the Absolute Truth face to face, the spiritual light, the spiritual expansions, the spiritual world if simply the person is sincere, simply the person is not a hypocrite, it is very easy to achieve all these realizations. (Bengali) But even after realizing the falsity of the material illusion in a materialistic world, if the person still simply remains in other forms of materialism, what is the use? (Bengali) So therefore Lord Caitanya says “Wake up, chant Hare Krishna, be happy.” (Bengali) Thank you very much!
... the sufferings just as Srila Prabhupad said here with the purpose of delivering the suffering humanity from the pangs of material burdens. (Bengali)
Are there any questions?
Question: (Inaudible)… to the maha-prakasa?
Jayapataka Swami: No, it says that He’s present. It says Nara Narayana are present in Krishna. That Nara is present in Arjuna and Narayana is present in Krishna because Krishna is able to assume unlimited forms. For every incarnation, He assumes a different form but He doesn’t lose his consciousness, He never forgets. So in that way within Krishna, because He is the original form all the other forms are included. Just as Lord Caitanya, from His form He produced Rama, He expanded to Varaha, Narasingha, all the forms came out. So Nara Narayana are also within Krishna.
Not that Krishna… It says that Nara Narayana Krishna says are amsa, it says He’s a part. In another part in the Bhagavatam it says that Krishna is the amsi, that He is the… He is the whole. So the part is definitely going to be present within the whole. So Nara Narayana, this previous incarnations as great sages are also present within Krishna. Nara Narayana came in that particular time and place to help the people to get self-realization. Similarly Krishna in the original form, within Him Narayana is there and within Arjuna, Nara is there and Arjuna is also the part of Krishna if you see the whole thing. It was very clear, just the technical way it was written.
It says “that Narayana the plenary expansion of Krishna had come as Krishna.
Narayana has come as Krishna, Varaha, everyone. But They are all part of Him. That means within Krishna all these avatars are there. So Krishna, He can manifest any of those particular moods. You see, you won’t find Nrsimhadeva dancing with the gopis! That is not His mood. You won’t find Varaha churning butter or something! Each has got a particular mood, you see. There are certain things that only Krishna does that They don’t do. But Krishna, you will find in His avatara, He can become angry and defeat, that is not the Krishna mood, that is the particular mood that when Krishna only manifests that mood that is present in Lord Nrsimhadeva or some other avatara. So within Krishna, He has all these different rupas and these different forms and different moods.
So you can say that… You can say it either way, you can say Narayana has come in Krishna or you can say Narayana is the part of Krishna, He has come, it is a technical thing.
Question: (Inaudible) He says “Your incarnation as Narayana.”?
Jayapataka Swami: Yes, Krishna and Arjuna. That means that, Krishna says, bahūni me vyatītāni janmāni tava cārjuna, that, “You have taken many births. So have I, but you forget. I don’t.” That means Krishna also appeared before Arjuna and Narayana. The difference is it is the same Krishna it is not that there’s different Godheads. It is the same one Absolute Truth. But sometimes in a different form, Krishna is only showing a very small percentage of His total capacity. It is the same person just He is not showing the full what He can do.
A person goes on stage maybe he just sings one act but he can actually sing, dance, stand on his head, walk on a tight rope. He shows just one thing. It is not his whole ensemble, it is not his whole act, he can do so many things. So Nara Narayana is showing His austerity and His knowledge, mainly the austere aspect. And Nara has come with Arjuna, so the same, They are coming but sometimes Krishna is partially manifesting sometimes fully manifesting. The full manifestation, the original manifes… the original form is Krishna. It is the same person; it is just different percentages of how much He is showing.
Question: So, my question is, “When Krishna comes, He directly comes from the spiritual world, but in the Krishna book it said He was an incarnation of Narayana.
Jayapataka Swami: It’s one and the same thing. It’s one and the same… When Krishna comes down from the spiritual world, then within Him also Nara Narayana are there. The point is why Mahavishnu is addressing because Nara and Narayana are individual souls and Narayana came together, They were a team and They together gave spiritual knowledge. Like when Varaha came it was a one man… one God show, I mean it was… He was there all alone and He just came and did His... When Trivikrama came, or when other people, they had different… the Supreme Person was there but He didn’t have a counterpart that He came with at the same time to disseminate knowledge. There were different pastimes, different situations. But the situation of Nara and Narayana where that Narayana came down and with Him there was an individual soul who was His constant companion who was disseminating spiritual knowledge together with Him and They were just never separated, and the form of Krishna and Arjuna, once Krishna left Vrndavana, He was always with Arjuna, practically constantly. They’d sit together, eat together, They were fighting together; everything They were doing was together. He spoke the Bhagavad-gita with him, together. He arranged his marriage together, whatever, everything was together. So in that sense you can see that that particular mood of the Supreme soul and the individual, in that type of relationship is same in Nara Narayana, or very similar as in Krishna and Arjuna. So Maha-vishnu is particularly addressing the relation, because both Krishna and Arjuna came. So from that we can understand that this relationship which Krishna and Arjuna have is eternal, that even in other avataras, certain avatars when Krishna comes and He has a friend like that, a constant companion, that that is also incarnation of Arjuna.
Krishna is… Krishna is an incarnation of Nara Narayana, and Nara Narayana is a part of Krishna. That means that the same function that Nara Narayana who were serving Krishna, Krishna also serves. But it is not limited there. You don’t… It is not a full stop. It is a semi colon, beyond that there are so many purposes. In other places you find that Rama has come as Krishna. Then you will find other quotes, other incarnation has come is also Krishna. And then you find how is it possible that Nara Narayana has come as Krishna that Narayana has come as Krishna, Vishnu has come as Krishna that Rama has come as Krishna that is explained because krishnas tu bhagavan svayam, Krishna is the original form. All those forms are within Him.
When it is the same person… you can say that the prime minister came, uh, as a… he was driving a car, so came as a car driver. So you can say the car driver came as the prime minister, it is the same… Here in the material world there are two different people. You have the car driver and the prime minister. But in Krishna and Nara Narayana there is no difference, so you can say Nara Narayana came as Krishna or Krishna came as Nara Narayana. It is the same thing. Because… just so that you wouldn’t make that mistake, in the Sanskrit it qualified it first who is the origin, it says Harer amsa, who is the part and who is the whole Harer amsa iha gataha, that Nara Narayana are the amsa, amsa means the part. Just so that later on when it said that they have come again as Krishna, it mean that Krishna also is fulfilling a similar purpose as this incarnation, but just so you wouldn’t get confused and think that Nara Narayana are the origin, He first of all qualifies that They are amsa, They are the part. Doesn’t say Krishna is the part. In other places Krishna is the whole; it is the same writer of the whole Bhagavatam.
Is that alright? Alright, anything else? (Bengali) That is why I said that this verse deals with a lot of technical things.
Jayapataka Swami: (bengali) Six changes, janma birth, growing, (Bengali) maintaining, (Bengali) by-product, (Bengali) decreasing, (Bengali) and then destruction, (Bengali) death. (Bengali) Baby is born, grows, (Bengali) stays twenty to forty. You stay more or less the same, produce some children, by-products, (Bengali) gradually gets old, (Bengali) and then death. (Bengali) Same thing for human beings, same thing plants. Plant seed sprout, grows, flowers, produces seed or fruit, wilts, dies. (Bengali) So plant, fish, human, all form of material life, wherever the jiva-atma is there, (Bengali) you will find these six changes. Those changes you won’t find in steel, in just this… a chair, a wall, you see (Bengali) because they don’t have the soul, they don’t have the spark of life, they don’t have the living consciousness, they don’t go through these changes. That is the difference between matter and spirit because the presence of the spirit, this matter changes. (Bengali)
Is that alright? You could follow? (Bengali)
We’re ready for darshan, Hare Krishna!
Transcribed by Jayaraseshwari devi dasi 28th April 2015
Revised by Jagannatha dasa Brahmacari