Jesus Christ Predicted The Appearance of Srila Prabhupada (Part 1)

By Mahesh Raja

Jesus Promises the Holy Spirit (Srila Prabhupada)

Holy Bible, John 14:16-18:

“And I will ask the Father, and he will give you ANOTHER Counsellor to be with you for ever—the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you.”

Srila Prabhupada the liberated devotee makes his appearance.

Caitanya-caritamrta Adi 1.58:

“Since one cannot visually experience the presence of the Supersoul, He appears before us as a liberated devotee. Such a spiritual master is none other than Krsna Himself.
It is not possible for a conditioned soul to directly meet Krsna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, but if one becomes a sincere devotee and seriously engages in devotional service, Lord Krsna sends an instructing spiritual master to show him favor and invoke his dormant propensity for serving the Supreme. The preceptor appears before the external senses of the fortunate conditioned soul, and at the same time the devotee is guided from within by the caittya-guru, Krsna, who is seated as the spiritual master within the heart of the living entity.”

Holy Bible, John 14:26:

“But the Counsellor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.”

Srila Prabhupada is teaching the same message: how to serve Krishna through the transparent via medium — his books (instructions).

Caitanya-caritamrta Adi 1.35:

“If there is no chance to serve the spiritual master directly, a devotee should serve him by remembering his instructions. There is NO DIFFERENCE between the spiritual master’s instructions and the spiritual master himself. In his absence, therefore, his words of direction should be the pride of the disciple.”

Holy Bible, John 15:26:

“When the Counsellor comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father, he will testify about me.”
Srila Prabhupada testifying about Jesus Christ

Srila Prabhupada Room Conversation, June 28, 1974, Melbourne:

“Who will not respect Jesus Christ? He sacrificed everything for God, even his life. So who is that rascal that he’ll not respect to Jesus Christ. What did he do wrong to the human society? He did everything for the good of the human society. Oh, I have got very, very, great respect for Lord Jesus Christ.”

Srila Prabhupada Appearance Day Lecture, September 23, 1969, London:

“Scriptures are also different. Because scriptures are made according to time, circumstances, people. Just like Bible. Bible Lord Jesus Christ preached in the desert, Jerusalem. Or where it is? People who were not so advanced. Therefore his first instruction is “Thou shall not kill.” That means they were very much engaged in killing affairs; otherwise, why is this instruction? And actually, it so happened that they killed Jesus Christ. So that society was not very enlightened society. So a scripture for a society which is not very enlightened and a scripture for a society which is very enlightened must be different. Just like a dictionary. For the schoolboy, a pocket dictionary. And for a college student, international, big dictionary. Both of them are dictionaries. But the small pocket dictionary is not equal to the big dictionary. Because it is different made for different classes of men. So scriptures are made according to different classes of men. There are three classes of men: first-class, second-class, and third-class. The third-class man cannot understand the philosophy and scriptural injunctions of the first-class man. That is not possible. Higher mathematics cannot be understood by the small schoolboys who are simply trying to understand “Two plus two equal to four.” But “Two plus two equal to four” is equally good to the higher mathematics student. But still, higher mathematics and lower math is different.”
The Work of the Holy Spirit (Srila Prabhupada)

Holy Bible, John 16:7-15:

“Unless I go away, the Counsellor will not come to you; but If I go, I will send him to you. When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgement: in regard to sin, because men do not believe in me; in regard to righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; and in regard to judgement, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.”

It is significant that Jesus Christ is saying, “unless I go away….”. He appears to be very eager to present his SUCCESSOR for the significant change to follow in the impious lives of the people. On this point it is note worthy to remember the prayer offered to Srila Prabhupada: nirvesesa sunyavadi pascatya desa tarine

“YOU are delivering the WESTERN countries, filled with impersonalism and voidism.

Also, “…because men do not believe in me” indicates they were not prepared to give up meat eating —Thou shall not kill.

Srila Prabhupada broke the four pillars of sinful life (meat eating, gambling, intoxication and illicit sex).

Srila Prabhupada Letter to Madhudvisa, January 26, 1970:

“Actually, one who is advanced will not find any contradiction. The Christians teach love of Godhead, and we practically do it. So one has to understand from the practical point of view. A man is judged by his activities. We see that they are engaged in smoking habits, eating meat and indulging in free mixing of boys and girls; these are not the activities of religious persons. Lord Jesus said and the Bible also says, “Thou shalt not Kill.” But they are eating meat. So we must see practically if someone is leading a pure life and not be blinded by some sentiment. Our students are strictly observing the four rules or restraints from impure habits and they are factually living according to the highest standard of religious life. So we are actually following the principles of pure living in Krishna Consciousness, but it appears that these followers of the Christian philosophy have fallen down from the transcendental platform.

Holy Bible:

“I have much more to say to you, MORE THAN YOU CAN NOW BEAR. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into ALL TRUTH.”

There are two points here (a) they could not bear any more instruction; and (b) guidance in ALL TRUTH. In relation to (a) there is further mention in the Bible:

(i) If you do not understand what is material, how will you understand spiritual?
(ii) I have many things to say unto you but your ears will not bear them as yet. Thus, it evidently clear that the people to whom he preached to were not advanced.

In relation to (b) ALL TRUTH—we find that it is ONLY Srila Prabhupada who actually gave COMPLETE information of the nature of the three features of the Absolute Truth.

Bhagavad-gita 2.2:

“Krsna and the Supreme Personality of Godhead are identical. Therefore Lord Krsna is referred to as “Bhagavan” throughout the Gita. Bhagavan is the ultimate in Absolute Truth. Absolute Truth is realized in three phases of understanding, namely Brahman, or the impersonal all-pervasive spirit; Paramatma, or the localized aspect of the Supreme within the heart of all living entities; and Bhagavan, or the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Krsna. In the Srimad-Bhagavatam (1.2.11) this conception of the Absolute Truth is explained thus:
vadanti tat tattva-vidas
tattvam yaj jnanam advayam
brahmeti paramatmeti
bhagavan iti sabdyate
“The Absolute Truth is realized in three phases of understanding by the knower of the Absolute Truth, and all of them are identical. Such phases of the Absolute Truth are expressed as Brahman, Paramatma, and Bhagavan.” These three divine aspects can be explained by the example of the sun, which also has three different aspects, namely the sunshine, the sun’s surface and the sun planet itself. One who studies the sunshine only is the preliminary student. One who understands the sun’s surface is further advanced. And one who can enter into the sun planet is the highest. Ordinary students who are satisfied simply by understanding the sunshine–its universal pervasiveness and the glaring effulgence of its impersonal nature–may be compared to those who can realize only the Brahman feature of the Absolute Truth. The student who has advanced still further can know the sun disc, which is compared to knowledge of the Paramatma feature of the Absolute Truth. And the student who can enter into the heart of the sun planet is compared to those who realize the personal features of the Supreme Absolute Truth. Therefore, the bhaktas, or the transcendentalists who have realized the Bhagavan feature of the Absolute Truth, are the topmost transcendentalists, although all students who are engaged in the study of the Absolute Truth are engaged in the same subject matter. The sunshine, the sun disc and the inner affairs of the sun planet cannot be separated from one another, and yet the students of the three different phases are not in the same category.
The Sanskrit word bhagavan is explained by the great authority, Parasara Muni, the father of Vyasadeva. The Supreme Personality who possesses all riches, all strength, all fame, all beauty, all knowledge and all renunciation is called Bhagavan.”

Srimad Bhagavatam 3.15.47:

“We know that You are the Supreme Absolute Truth, the Personality of Godhead, who manifests His transcendental form in the uncontaminated mode of pure goodness. This transcendental, eternal form of Your personality can be understood only by Your mercy, through unflinching devotional service, by great sages whose hearts have been purified in the devotional way.
The Absolute Truth can be understood in three features—impersonal Brahman, localized Paramatma, and Bhagavan, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Here it is admitted that the Supreme Personality of Godhead is the last word in understanding the Absolute Truth. Even though the four Kumaras were instructed by their great learned father, Brahma, they could not actually understand the Absolute Truth. They could only understand the Supreme Absolute Truth when they personally SAW the Personality of Godhead with their own eyes. In other words, if one sees or understands the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the other two features of the Absolute Truth—namely impersonal Brahman and localized Paramatma—are also automatically understood. Therefore the Kumaras confirm: “You are the ultimate Absolute Truth.” The impersonalist may argue that since the Supreme Personality of Godhead was so nicely decorated, He was therefore not the Absolute Truth. But here it is confirmed that all the variegatedness of the absolute platform is constituted of Suddha-sattva, pure goodness. In the material world, any quality—goodness, passion or ignorance—is contaminated. Even the quality of goodness here in the material world is not free from tinges of passion and ignorance. But in the transcendental world, only pure goodness, without any tinge of passion or ignorance, exists; therefore the form of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and His variegated pastimes and paraphernalia are all pure sattva-guna. Such variegatedness in pure goodness is exhibited eternally by the Lord for the satisfaction of the devotee. The devotee does not want to see the Supreme Personality of Absolute Truth in voidness or impersonalism. In one sense, absolute transcendental variegatedness is meant only for the devotees, not for others, because this distinct feature of transcendental variegatedness can be understood only by the mercy of the Supreme Lord and not by mental speculation or the ascending process. It is said that one can understand the Supreme Personality of Godhead when one is even slightly favored by Him; otherwise, without His mercy, a man may speculate for thousands of years and not understand what is actually the Absolute Truth. This mercy can be perceived by the devotee when he is completely freed from contamination. It is stated, therefore, that only when all contamination is rooted out and the devotee is completely detached from material attractions can he receive this mercy of the Lord.”

The Bible also says: Blessed are the pure in the heart for they shall SEE God. So this fully corresponds to the above, where the Kumaras SAW God (Bhagavan realization).

Holy Bible:

“He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you WHAT IS YET TO COME. ”

Srila Prabhupada the liberated devotee is giving the purports to the Srimad-Bhagavatam, predicting events to happen in the future.

Srila Prabhupada Conversation, August 31, 1973, London:

Hamsaduta: “Actually in the Bible there’s, someone mentions there the description that the Lord will come and He will ride on a white steed, on a white horse. And at that time he will kill all the non-devotee people. It’s also in the Bible.
Guest (1): Yes.
Prabhupada: So this Kalki, this incarnation of Krsna which comes at the end of this age, He’s described, He will come and ride on a white horse all over the world, and He will…,
Prabhupada: Kill.”

Srimad Bhagavatam 1.3.24:

“Srimad-Bhagavatam was composed just prior to the beginning of the age of Kali (about five thousand years ago), and Lord Buddha appeared about twenty-six hundred years ago. Therefore in the Srimad-Bhagavatam Lord Buddha is foretold. Such is the authority of this clear scripture. There Are many such prophecies, and they are being fulfilled one after another. They will indicate the positive standing of Srimad-Bhagavatam, which is without trace of mistake, illusion, cheating and imperfection, which are the four flaws of all conditioned souls. The liberated souls are above these flaws; therefore they can see and foretell things which are to take place on distant future dates.
Thereafter, at the conjunction of two yugas, the Lord of the creation will take His birth as the Kalki incarnation and become the son of Visnu Yasha. At this time the rulers of the earth will have degenerated into plunderers.
Here is another foretelling of the advent of Lord Kalki, the incarnation of Godhead. He is to appear at the conjunction of the two yugas, namely at the end of Kali-yuga and the beginning of Satya-yuga. The cycle of the four yugas, namely Satya, Treta, Dvapara and Kali, rotates like the calendar months. The present Kali-yuga lasts 432,000 years, out of which we have passed only 5,000 years after the Battle of Kurukshetra and the end of the regime of King Pariksit. So there are 427,000 years balance yet to be finished. Therefore at the end of this period, the incarnation of Kalki will take place, as foretold in the Srimad-Bhagavatam. The name of His father, Visnu Yasha, a learned brahmana, and the village Sambhala are also mentioned. As above mentioned, all these foretellings will prove to be factual in chronological order. That is the authority of Srimad-Bhagavatam.”

Srimad Bhagavatam 5.2.1:

“Srimad-Bhagavatam predicts that in Kali-yuga the government will be entrusted with dasyu-dharma, which means the occupational duty of rogues and thieves. Modern heads of state are rogues and thieves who plunder the citizens instead of giving them protection. Rogues and thieves plunder without regard for law, but in this age of Kali, as stated in Srimad-Bhagavatam, the lawmakers themselves plunder the citizens. The next prediction to be fulfilled, which is already coming to pass, is that because of the sinful activities of the citizens and the government, rain will become increasingly scarce. Gradually there will be complete drought and no production of food grains. People will be reduced to eating flesh and seeds, and many good, spiritually inclined people will have to forsake their homes because they will be too harassed by drought, taxation and famine. The Krsna consciousness movement is the only hope to save the world from such devastation. It is the most scientific and authorized movement for the actual welfare of the whole human society.”

Holy Bible:

“He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you.”

Krishna is the property of his pure devotee. Jesus Christ said, “Hallowed be Thy Name” and Srila Prabhupada gives us this Name: Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare \ Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare.

Srila Prabhupada is the TRANSPARENT VIA-MEDIUM who gives us Krsna.

Srila Prabhupada Interview, July 14, 1976, New York:

Bali-mardana: “In other words, when you decide that someone is to be in charge of a particular temple does Krsna tell you that this person should be in charge.
Interviewer: Or do you by judging him say this person is qualified.
Prabhupada: Yes, because a devotee always consults Krsna and He gives order.
Interviewer: It’s a more direct communication.
Prabhupada: Yes. And He gives order.
Ramesvara: Because intelligence, our philosophy is that intelligence comes from Krsna. So if I have some…
Interviewer: And your philosophy is that your daily necessities come from Krsna as well.
Ramesvara: Yes, try to understand. Suppose my intelligence sees that this person is qualified, that means Krsna has told me.
Interviewer: Does that apply then to other kinds of decisions and other kinds of activities as well?
Prabhupada: Everything. Because a devotee does not do anything without consulting Krsna.”

Caitanya-caritamrta Antya 5.71:

“One is forbidden to accept the guru, or spiritual master, as an ordinary human being (gurusu nara-mati). When Ramananda Raya spoke to Pradyumna Misra, Pradyumna Misra could understand that Ramananda Raya was not an ordinary human being. A SPIRITUALLY ADVANCED PERSON WHO ACTS WITH AUTHORITY, AS THE SPIRITUAL MASTER, SPEAKS AS THE SUPREME PERSONALITY OF GODHEAD DICTATES FROM WITHIN. THUS IT IS NOT HE THAT IS PERSONALLY SPEAKING. WHEN A PURE DEVOTEE OR SPIRITUAL MASTER SPEAKS, WHAT HE SAYS SHOULD BE ACaitanya-caritamrtaEPTED AS HAVING BEEN DIRECTLY SPOKEN BY THE SUPREME PERSONALITY OF GODHEAD IN THE PARAMPARA SYSTEM.”

Further analysis of John 14:26:

Holy Bible:

“But the counsellor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name will teach you ALL THINGS and will REMIND you of EVERYTHING I HAVE SAID TO YOU.”

Now we will be able to see the demonstration by the Holy Spirit (Srila Prabhupada) of the above.

Srila Prabhupada Lecture on Srimad Bhagavatam, September 1, 1972, New Vrindaban:

“So sound is the original element of creation. In Sanskrit language it is called sabda-brahma. Brahman, or the Absolute Truth, is first appeared Absolute Truth becomes knowable by sound. In the Bhagavad-gita it is said, the Lord says, raso ‘ham apsu kaunteya prabhasmi sasi-suryayoh, sabdah khe. Sabda means sound. If we want to see God, so let us hear first of all the sound vibration, because that is the beginning. In the Bible also it is said, “The Lord said, ‘Let there be creation,’ and there was creation.” So “Let there be creation,” this is sound, transcendental sound. So one who says this word, “Let there be creation,” He is not within the creation. Because He, God, is speaking, “Let there be creation”

Srila Prabhupada Morning Walk, January 12, 1974, Los Angeles:

Prajapati: “…from politics to the world of theology. One of the most misunderstood passages in the western scriptures, things that are…, most speculation about, is the beginning of the Book of John, where it is said, “In the beginning was the word, and the word was with God, and the word was God.” And that Greek word is logos. And so many people have said so many different things about that passage. No one really understands it.
Umapati: Absolute?
Prabhupada: Absolute, yes.
Svarupa Damodara: We also say that. We say that the beginning the sound vibration om was there. Om.
Prabhupada: Yes. Sabdad anavrtti. In Vedanta-sutra, sabdad anavrtti. Sabdat. By vibration.
Prajapati: But it goes on to say, “Then the word then came down to earth and dwelt with man as Jesus Christ.” They say Lord Jesus Christ was the word incarnate.
Prabhupada: That’s all right.
Umapati: Incarnate means flesh, having come down in flesh.
Prabhupada: That’s all right.
Prajapati: From our Krsna conscious standpoint, this means a person who is jagad-guru, who is fully living sastra, and therefore non-different from the word of God?
Prabhupada: Yes, yes. Because he is following the words of God, THEREFORE HE IS NOT DIFFERENT FROM THE WORDS OF GOD. It is practical. Just like a lawyer is not different from the law. Therefore he is called lawyer.”

Prajapati has made a very valid point here. In this context let us take a look at the form of address to Srila Prabhupada:

namo om VISNU-padaya krsna-presthyabhu-tale

So Srila Prabhupada is worshiped on the level of Lord Visnu (Krsna) because he is a TRANSPARENT VIA MEDIUM representative who accepts our service on behalf of the Lord.

Srila Prabhupada Garden Conversation, June 8, 1976, Los Angeles:

Prabhupada: “Krsna’s representative means the representative says the same thing as Krsna says. Krsna says “Surrender unto Me,” and the representative says “Surrender to Krsna.” AND BECAUSE HE DELIVERS THE REAL KNOWLEDGE, HE’S AS GOOD AS KRSNA. THEREFORE SAKSAD-DHARITVENA SAMASTA-SASTRAIR UKTAS TATHA BHAVYATA EVA SADBHIH. THE SPIRITUAL MASTER MAY APPEAR TO BE JUST LIKE A COMMON MAN, BUT HE IS TO BE RESPECTED AS GOD, BECAUSE HE DELIVERS THE REAL MESSAGE OF GOD. That is the qualification of spiritual master. He does not manufacture anything. That is very easy. If I carry your message and educate people in that way, then there is no difficulty for me. Everything is there. Why shall I go to manufacture something imperfect? The perfect thing is already there. Simply I have to carry. A post peon–the money order is there, he has to simply carry and deliver to the person. And if he gets at time of need, he thanks the peon, “Oh, you have saved my life.” It is like that. The message is already there. You have to simply deliver to the suffering humanity. Then he’ll be relieved. And because he delivers the real reality, therefore he’s worshiped as God. Saksad-dharitvena samasta-sastrair uktas tatha bhavyata eva sadbhih. ACARYAM MAM HI VIJANIYAT. KRSNA ALSO SAYS ACARYA IS…, “I AM ACARYA.”

Srila Prabhupada Lecture, October 2, 1968, Seattle:

Tamala Krsna: “Can a Christian in this age, without a spiritual master, but by reading the Bible and following Jesus’s words, reach the…
Prabhupada: When you read Bible, you follow spiritual master. How can you say without? As soon as you read Bible, that means you are following the instruction of Lord Jesus Christ, that means you are following spiritual master. So where is the opportunity of being without spiritual master?
Madhudvisa: I was referring to a LIVING spiritual master.
Prabhupada: Spiritual master is NOT the question of… SPIRITUAL MASTER IS ETERNAL. SPIRITUAL MASTER IS ETERNAL. So your question is without spiritual master. Without spiritual master you cannot be, at any stage of your life. You may accept this spiritual master or that spiritual master. That is a different thing. But you have to accept. As you say that “by reading Bible,” when you read Bible that means you are following the spiritual master represented by some priest or some clergyman in the line of Lord Jesus Christ. So any case, you have to follow a spiritual master. There cannot be the question without spiritual master. Is that clear?”

Reservoir of Pleasure:

“Some people argue that Arjuna was talking with Krsna because Krsna was present before him, whereas in my case, Krsna is not present. So how can I get directions? But that is not a fact. Krsna is present by His words–the Bhagavad-gita. In India, when we speak on the Bhagavad-gita or Srimad-Bhagavatam, we regularly perform worship with flowers, or with other paraphernalia, as is required for worshiping. In the Sikh religion also, although they have no form of the Deity, they worship the book Granthasahib. Perhaps some of you are acquainted with this Sikh community. They worship this Grantha. Similarly, the Moslems worship the Koran. Similarly, in the Christian world, the Bible is worshiped. IT IS A FACT that the Lord Jesus Christ IS PRESENT by His WORDS. Krsna is also present by His words. THESE PERSONALITIES, EITHER GOD OR THE SON OF GOD, WHO COME FROM THE TRANSCENDENTAL WORLD, KEEP THEIR TRANSCENDENTAL IDENTITIES WITHOUT BEING CONTAMINATED BY THE MATERIAL WORLD. THAT IS THEIR OMNIPOTENCE. WE ARE IN THE HABIT OF SAYING THAT GOD IS OMNIPOTENT. OMNIPOTENCE MEANS THAT HE IS NOT DIFFERENT FROM HIS NAME, FROM HIS QUALITY, FROM HIS PASTIMES, FROM HIS INSTRUCTION. THEREFORE, THE DISCUSSION OF BHAGAVAD-GITA IS AS GOOD AS DISCUSSION WITH KRSNA HIMSELF.”

Similarly we can still get direction from Srila Prabhupada, WHO IS PRESENT BY HIS WORDS, DEITY TO GIVE US GUIDANCE.

Holy Bible, John 14:18-21:

“I will not leave you fatherless; I am coming to you. A little while, and the world will see me no more: but you will see me; because I am living you will live also. In that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me and I in you. Whoever keeps my commands, and regards them, It is he who loves me; and one who loves me will be loved by my Father: and I will love him, and will make myself known to him.”

When Jesus Christ is saying that the world will see him no longer is when he is not physically present; but one can see him through his instructions, which are not different from him (spiritual masters instructions are not different from him).

When he says I will not leave you Fatherless—-he is giving the world Srila Prabhupada who like him is the Spiritual master the transparent via medium through whom we get Krsna. This identical philosophy which Jesus Christ talked is called acintya-bhedabheda-tattva (simultaneous oneness and difference). Jesus is talking as a pure devotee and SIMULTANEOUSLY CHRIST(KRSNA) IS ALSO TALKING THROUGH HIS PURE DEVOTEE. This “I am coming to you ” is also referring to Krsna’s appearance as the Holy spirit (Visnu, Supersoul ) who manifests EXTERNALLY AS THE LIBERATED DEVOTEE. ALSO SINCE SRILA PRABHUPADA IS NOT DIFFERENT FROM HIS INSTRUCTIONS(HIS BOOKS) DEVOTEES ARE SAVED FROM APPROACHING SOME CHEATER WHO IS POSING AS SPIRITUAL MASTER. THEREFORE “EXTERNAL SENSES” QUOTED BELOW IS CORRECT.

Remember Lord Visnu the Paramatma (Holy spirit) feature, He appears as the external manifestation, as Srila Prabhupada, LIBERATED DEVOTEE.

Caitanya-caritamrta Adi 1.58:

It is not possible for a conditioned soul to directly meet Krsna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, but if one becomes a sincere devotee and seriously engages in devotional service, Lord Krsna sends an instructing spiritual master to show him favor and invoke his dormant propensity for serving the Supreme. THE PRECEPTOR APPEARS BEFORE THE EXTERNAL SENSES OF THE FORTUNATE CONDITIONED SOUL, AND AT THE SAME TIME THE DEVOTEE IS GUIDED FROM WITHIN BY THE CAITTYA-GURU, KRSNA, WHO IS SEATED AS THE SPIRITUAL MASTER WITHIN THE HEART OF THE LIVING ENTITY.”
Acintya-bhedabheda-tattva (philosophical truth of simultaneous oneness and difference)

Srimad Bhagavatam 2.6.13-16:

“The Supreme Personality of Godhead, by His partial representation, measuring not more than nine inches as Supersoul, expands by His potential energy in the shape of the universal form, which includes everything manifested in different varieties of organic and inorganic materials. The manifested varieties of the universe are therefore not different from the Lord, just as golden ornaments of different shapes and forms are nondifferent from the original stock reserve of gold. In other words, the Lord is the Supreme Person who controls everything within the creation, and still He remains the supreme separate identity, distinct from all manifested material creation. In the Bhagavad-gita (9.4-5) He is therefore said to be Yogesvara. Everything rests on the potency of Lord Sri Krsna, and still the Lord is different from and transcendental to all such identities. In the Vedic Purusa-sukta of the Rg mantra, this is also confirmed. This philosophical truth of simultaneous oneness and difference was propounded by Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, and it is known as acintya-bhedabheda-tattva. BRAHMA, NARADA AND ALL OTHERS ARE SIMULTANEOUSLY ONE WITH THE LORD AND DIFFERENT FROM THE SUPREME LORD. We are all one with Him, just as the gold ornaments are one in quality with the stock gold, but the individual gold ornament is never equal in quantity with the stock gold. THE STOCK GOLD IS NEVER EXHAUSTED EVEN IF THERE ARE INNUMERABLE ORNAMENTS EMANATING FROM THE STOCK BECAUSE THE STOCK IS PURNAM, COMPLETE; EVEN IF PURNAM IS DEDUCTED FROM THE PURNAM, STILL THE SUPREME PURNAM REMAINS THE SAME PURNAM. THIS FACT IS INCONCEIVABLE TO OUR PRESENT IMPERFECT SENSES. LORD CAITANYA THEREFORE DEFINED HIS THEORY OF PHILOSOPHY AS ACINTYA (INCONCEIVABLE), AND AS CONFIRMED IN THE BHAGAVAD-GITA AS WELL AS IN THE BHAGAVATAM, LORD CAITANYA’S THEORY OF ACINTYA-BHEDABHEDA-TATTVA IS THE PERFECT PHILOSOPHY OF THE ABSOLUTE TRUTH.”

Srila Prabhupada Morning Walk, May 13, 1973, Los Angeles:

Paramahamsa: “Srila Prabhupada, when you are not present with us, how is it possible to receive instructions, for example, on questions that may arise?
Paramahamsa: Other than that, for example, that we would ask you in…
Prabhupada: Yes.
Paramahamsa: Do you direct us also through the heart? Besides the Paramatma?
Prabhupada: IF YOUR HEART IS PURE. Everything depends on purity.

Srila Prabhupada Letter to Sivananda, April 19, 1968:

“Regarding the Christian’s Trinity, I believe it is called God, the Holy Ghost, and the son. Person in Krishna Consciousness accepts this by the name Visnu, Paramatma, and Jiva. God is a Person, the holy spirit or the supersoul is a person, and the living entity is also a person. Also, Mary is the representation of the energy of God. Either as internal energy Radharani or as external energy Durga, the energy of Godhead can be considered the mother of the living entities. But there is no clash between the Bible and the Vedas, simply some people formulate their personal ideas and cause quarrelings. Nobody can say the Bible was meant for the same class of men as the Bhagavad-gita. And Bhagavad-gita is the ABC’s of Spiritual knowledge. Beyond that is Srimad-Bhagavatam. How great Srimad-Bhagavatam is nobody can imagine. And beyond that is Caitanya Caritamrta. But beginning from the Bible or Koran, on up the principle remains the same. Just like beginning from the pocket dictionary”

Srimad Bhagavatam 6.5.20:

“In the Bible, which is also sastra, one will find the same advice: one should cease materialistic life and return to the kingdom of God.”

Srimad Bhagavatam 10.13.62:

“He who appeared before Brahma as a human child was in fact the Absolute Truth, Parabrahman (brahmeti paramatmeti bhagavan iti sabdyate). The Supreme Lord is narakrti; that is, He resembles a human being. It is not that He is four-armed (catur-bahu). Narayana is catur-bahu, but the Supreme Person resembles a human being. This is also confirmed in the Bible, where it is said that man was made in the image of God. Lord Brahma saw that Krsna, in His form as a cowherd boy, was Parabrahman, the root cause of everything, but was now appearing as a human child, loitering in Vrndavana with a morsel of food in His hand.”

Perfect Questions, Perfect Answers, 3:

“Srila Prabhupada: He supplies everything to everyone. He is supplying food to everyone. So He is the Father. So why should you not pray, “Father, give me this”? Just as in the Christian Bible there is, “Father, give us our daily bread.” That is good–they are accepting the Supreme Father. But grown-up children should not ask from the father; rather, they should be prepared to serve the father. That is bhakti [devotion].”

Caitanya-caritamrta Adi 17.168:

“In our practical preaching work we meet many Christians who talk about statements of the Bible. When we question whether God is limited or unlimited, Christian priests say that God is unlimited. But when we question why the unlimited God should have only one son and not unlimited sons, they are unable to answer. Similarly, from a scientific point of view, the answers of the Old Testament, New Testament and Koran to many questions have changed. But a sastra cannot change at a person’s whim. All sastras must be free from the four defects of human nature. The statements of sastras must be correct for all time.”

Caitanya-caritamrta Adi 17.169:

“Sometimes Christian priests come to us inquiring, “Why are our followers neglecting our scriptures and accepting yours?” But when we ask them, “Your Bible says, ‘Do not kill.’ Why then are you killing so many animals daily?” they cannot answer. Some of them imperfectly answer that the animals have no souls. But then we ask them, “How do you know that animals have no souls? Animals and children are of the same nature. Does this mean that the children of human society also have no souls?” According to the Vedic scriptures, within the body is the owner of the body, the soul. In the Bhagavad-gita (2.13) it is said:
dehino ‘smin yatha dehe
kaumaram yauvanam jara
tatha dehantara-praptir
dhiras tatra na muhyati
“As the embodied soul continuously passes, in this body, from boyhood to youth to old age, the soul similarly passes into another body at death. The self-realized soul is not bewildered by such a change.”
Because the soul is within the body, the body changes through so many forms. There is a soul within the body of every living entity, whether animal, tree, bird or human being, and the soul is transmigrating from one type of body to another. When the scriptures of the yavanas–namely, the Old Testament, New Testament and Koran–cannot properly answer inquisitive followers, naturally those advanced in scientific knowledge and philosophy lose faith in such scriptures. The Kazi admitted this while talking with Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. The Kazi was a very intelligent person.”

Srila Prabhupada Letter to Vrndavana Candra, July 19, 1970:

“Question the fifth: If Mohammed as the servant of God and Lord Jesus Christ is the son of God, then where is the break of the disciplic succession. After all the disciplic sucession is beginning from God, so how do you find that there is no disciplic succession? If the original tree has branches, twigs and leaves and they are in touch with the original tree, it is alright. The test is whether the line is in touch with the Supreme–that is all.
Although Mohammed and Jesus Christ appeared in the Kali Yuga their instruction is as it is because the persons to whom they had to speak could not understand any more and they find it difficult to understand even that much.

Srila Prabhupada Letter to Aniruddha, November 14, 1968:

“Your next question, “Is a pure devotee eternally liberated and if so is he at any time a conditioned soul? We are eternally conditioned, but as soon as we surrender to Krishna do we then become eternally liberated? When Lord Christ appeared he seemed to be conditioned in his growth. Was he a specific incarnation or a conditioned soul who became liberated?” You are not eternally conditioned. You are eternally liberated but since we have become conditioned on account of our desire to enjoy materialistic way of life, from time immemorial, therefore it appears that we are eternally conditioned. Because we cannot trace out the history or the date when we became conditioned, therefore it is technically called eternally conditioned. Otherwise the living entity is not actually conditioned. A living entity is always pure. But he is prone to be attracted by material enjoyment and as soon as he agrees to place himself in material enjoyment, he becomes conditioned, but that is not permanent. Therefore a living entity is called on the marginal state, sometimes this side, sometimes that side. These are very intelligent questions. And I am very glad that you are putting such intelligent questions and trying to understand it. It is very good. But best thing is that one should know he is in conditioned life and try to cure it. When a man is in diseased condition he should try to get out of diseased condition without harassing his brain when the disease has begun. But it is to be understood that the disease is not our constant companion, it is temporary. So the best thing is to cure the disease, and not waste our time to find out the date when it began. Forgetfulness of Krishna is the disease, so let us keep ourselves always in Krishna Consciousness, and get out of the disease, that is healthy life. Yes, Lord Jesus was jivatattva. He is not Visnu tattva. When a jiva tattva becomes specifically empowered by the Lord, he is called saktyavesa avatara. LORD BUDDHA AND LORD JESUS CHRIST WERE IN THIS GROUP OF SAKTYAVESA AVATARA. But they were not in conditioned state when they appeared; they came to teach here.”

Srila Prabhupada Letter to Bhagava, March 2, 1970:

“Regarding the end of devotees of Lord Jesus Christ, they can go to heaven, that is all. That is a planet in the material world. A devotee of Lord Jesus Christ is one who is strictly following the ten commandments. Now just like in the commandment “Thou shalt not kill” this is a moral instruction for the sinful man. Similarly Lord Buddha also emphasized ahimsa paramadharma “the highest religion is nonviolence.” So these instructions are for the sinful men. When one is pious, instead of being sinful, he is promoted to the higher planetary systems like Janaloka, Mahaloka, or Tapaloka and they are above the planet Svargaloka. So persons who are cleansed of sinful life become eligible for spiritual life. FROM THE INSTRUCTIONS OF LORD JESUS CHRIST WE FIND THAT THE STRESS IS GIVEN TO MAKE MEN FREE FROM SINFUL LIFE–SUCH AS “THOU SHALT NOT KILL” “THOU SHALT NOT COVET”–LIKE THAT. THEREFORE THE CONCLUSION IS THAT THE DEVOTEES OF LORD JESUS CHRIST ARE PROMOTED TO THE HEAVENLY PLANETS WHICH ARE WITHIN THIS MATERIAL WORLD.”

Srila Prabhupada Letter to Satsvarupa, October 31, 1969:

“Now coming to some other points discussed in the Cathedral Sermons pamphlet, we may take notice of the writer’s statement which may help us in understanding the real position of Christian religion. In one of the statements he says the Bishop Dean, the former Executive Officer of the Anglican Communion, said to the general Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada last month that he gives the church as it exists today ten more years of life. The reason the church was dying he said was because it had become irrelevant. This means that the church people no more can convince the advanced, educated men of the present day. In another place he says in discussing the Ten Commandents of the Bible about the sanctity of (human life). INSTEAD OF EXACTLY QUOTING THE COMMANDMENT “THOU SHALT NOT KILL,” HE REPLACES BY HIS OWN WORDS “THOU SHALT DO NO MURDER”. BUT HE DOES NOT KNOW HOW HIS OWN WORDS REFLECT TO THE THEN SOCIETY WHEREIN LORD JESUS CHRIST WAS PREACHING. TO SAY TO HIS AUDIENCE, “THOU SHALT DO NO MURDER” MEANS THEY WERE VERY MUCH ACaitanya-caritamrtaUSTOMED TO COMMIT MURDER. SO WHAT IS THE POSITION OF THAT SOCIETY WHERE THE MEMBERS ARE ACaitanya-caritamrtaUSTOMED TO COMMIT MURDER, AND WHAT CLASS OF PREACHING CAN BE MADE TO SUCH PERSONS? As we see in another religious principle there is instruction that henceforward you shall not co-habit with your mother. So we have to judge such societies where there are murderers and those having sex life with their mothers, what kind of men they are. In the Bhagavad-gita the religious principles are divided into three categories: in the modes of goodness, passion and ignorance. Generally, all so-called principles are in the modes of passion and ignorance. Maybe there are some moral instructions, but moral instructions without God-consciousness is impossible to follow. In another place the gentleman quotes one book written by Prof. Charles Smith. The book’s name is “The Paradox of Jesus in the Gospels”. In this book it is admitted that all the statements in the Bible are not directly spoken by Jesus. Some of them are staged through the mouth of Jesus Christ; and specifically this passage: “I am the way, the Truth and the light. No man comes unto the Father but by me.” This gentleman admits that it is put into the mouth of Jesus because that is the literary convention of the author of the 4th Gospel. Such kinds of observations definitely suggests that there are many passages in the Gospel which are later on set up to be spoken by Lord Jesus Christ, but actually they were manufactured by different devotees. So far as our Bhagavad-gita is concerned, we do not find any such thing. Everywhere it is stated sri bhagavan uvaca: the Supreme Personality of Godhead said. And all the acaryas have accepted these words as they are spoken by the Lord. No authorized acharya has ever commented that it was put into the mouth of Krishna by Vyasadeva or Sanjaya or any other person.”

Srila Prabhupada Letter to Govinda, February 10, 1969:

“Regarding Karatieya, I am sorry to inform you that all of a sudden he has been captivated by maya, and since yesterday, he has left my company. The day before yesterday afternoon, he was absent for more than three hours and when he came back, he explained that he was out walking in the street. Later on, it was found that he went to see a Christian priest who had impressed upon his mind that one can drink wine after offering it to Lord Christ on the first Friday of every month. I had been informed by Karatieya that before his coming to our Krishna Consciousness camp he was drinking too much. So now he wanted to give me evidence that drinking was good when it is offered to Lord Christ. I tried to convince him that drinking is not at all good. The very fact that one should drink on the first Friday of each month means it is rigidly restricted; one can drink only once every month, but in the case of bread, it is said that one should pray daily for bread from the Lord.”

Caitanya-caritamrta Madhya 15.163:

“My dear Lord, let me suffer perpetually in a hellish condition, accepting all the sinful reactions of all living entities. Please finish their diseased material life.”
Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura gives the following commentary on this verse. In the Western countries, Christians believe that Lord Jesus Christ, their spiritual master, appeared in order to eradicate all the sins of his disciples. To this end, Lord Jesus Christ appeared and disappeared. Here, however, we find Sri Vasudeva Datta Thakura and Srila Haridasa Thakura to be many millions of times more advanced even when compared to Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ relieved only his followers from all sinful reactions, but Vasudeva Datta is here prepared to accept the sins of everyone in the universe. A Vaisnava is so liberal that he is prepared to risk everything to rescue conditioned souls from material existence. Srila Vasudeva Datta Thakura is universal love itself, for he was willing to sacrifice everything and fully engage in the service of the Supreme. Srila Vasudeva Datta knew very well that Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu was the original Personality of Godhead. He was transcendence itself, above the material conception of illusion and maya. Lord Jesus Christ certainly finished the sinful reactions of his followers by his mercy, but that does not mean that he completely delivered them from the pangs of material existence. A person may be relieved from sins once, but it is a practice among Christians to confess sins and yet commit them again. By getting freed from sins and again engaging in them, one cannot attain freedom from the pangs of material existence. A diseased person may go to a physician for relief, but after he leaves the hospital he may again be infected due to his unclean habits. Thus material existence continues. Srila Vasudeva Datta wanted to completely relieve the conditioned souls from material existence so that they would no longer have an opportunity to commit sinful acts. This is the difference between Srila Vasudeva Datta and Lord Jesus Christ. IT IS A GREAT OFFENSE TO RECEIVE PARDON FOR SINS AND THEN COMMIT THE SAME SINS AGAIN. SUCH AN OFFENSE IS MORE DANGEROUS THAN THE SINFUL ACTIVITY ITSELF. Vasudeva Datta was so liberal that he requested Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu to transfer all offensive activity upon him so the conditioned souls might be purified. This prayer was certainly without duplicity.”

Perfect Questions, Perfect Answers, 6:

vancha-kalpa-tarubhyas ca
krpa-sindhubhya eva ca
patitanam pavanebhyo
vaisnavebhyo namo namah
[“I offer my respectful obeisances unto all the Vaisnava devotees of the Lord. They are just like desire trees who can fulfill the desires of everyone, and they are full of compassion for the fallen conditioned souls.”] He takes responsibility for all the fallen souls. That idea is also in the Bible. Jesus Christ took all the sinful reactions of the people and sacrificed his life. That is the responsibility of a spiritual master. Because Krsna is Krsna, He is apapa-viddha–He cannot be attacked by sinful reactions. But a living entity is sometimes subjected to their influence because he is so small. Big fire, small fire. If you put some big thing in a small fire, the fire itself may be extinguished. But in a big fire, whatever you put in is all right. The big fire can consume anything.
Bob: Christ’s suffering was of that nature?
Srila Prabhupada: Mm-m?
Bob: Was Christ’s suffering–
Srila Prabhupada: That I have already explained. He took the sinful reactions of all the people. Therefore he suffered.
Bob: I see.
Srila Prabhupada: He said–that is in the Bible–that he took all the sinful reactions of the people and sacrificed his life. But these Christian people have made it a law for Christ to suffer while they do all nonsense. [Bob gives a short laugh.] Such great fools they are! They have let Jesus Christ make a contract for taking all their sinful reactions so they can go on with all nonsense. That is their religion. Christ was so magnanimous that he took all their sins and suffered, but that does not induce them to stop all these sins. They have not come to that sense. They have taken it very easily. “Let Lord Jesus Christ suffer, and we’ll do all nonsense.” Is it not?
Bob: It is so.
Srila Prabhupada: They should have been ashamed: “Lord Jesus Christ suffered for us, but we are continuing the sinful activities.” He told everyone, “Thou shalt not kill,” but they are indulging in killing, thinking, “Lord Jesus Christ will excuse us and take all the sinful reactions.” This is going on. We should be very much cautious: “For my sinful actions my spiritual master will suffer, so I’ll not commit even a pinch of sinful activities.” That is the duty of the disciple. After initiation, all sinful reaction is finished. Now if he again commits sinful activities, his spiritual master has to suffer. A disciple should be sympathetic and consider this. “For my sinful activities, my spiritual master will suffer.” If the spiritual master is attacked by some disease, it is due to the sinful activities of others. “Don’t make many disciples.” But we do it because we are preaching. Never mind–let us suffer–still we shall accept them. Therefore your question was–when I suffer is it due to my past misdeeds? Was it not? That is my misdeed–that I accepted some disciples who are nonsense. That is my misdeed.
Bob: This happens on occasions?
Srila Prabhupada: Yes. This is sure to happen because we are accepting so many men. It is the duty of the disciples to be cautious. “My spiritual master has saved me. I should not put him again into suffering.” When the spiritual master is in suffering, Krsna saves him. Krsna thinks, “Oh, he has taken so much responsibility for delivering a fallen person.” So Krsna is there.
kaunteya pratijanihi
na me bhaktah pranasyati
[“O son of Kunti, declare it boldly that My devotee never perishes.”]
Because the spiritual master takes the risk on account of Krsna.
Bob: Your suffering is not the same kind of pain..
Srila Prabhupada: No, it is not due to karma. The pain is there sometimes, so that the disciples may know, “Due to our sinful activities, our spiritual master is suffering.”
Bob: You look very well now.
Srila Prabhupada: I am always well… in the sense that even if there is suffering, I know Krsna will protect me. But this suffering is not due to my sinful activities.
Bob: But let us say when I–in the town I live in, I take boiled water because some of the water has disease in it. Now, why should I drink boiled water if I have been good enough not to get a disease? Then I may drink any water. And if I have been not acting properly. then I shall get disease anyway.
Srila Prabhupada: So long as you are in the material world, you cannot neglect physical laws. Suppose you go to a jungle and there is a tiger. It is known that it will attack you, so why should you voluntarily go and be attacked? It is not that a devotee should take physical risk so long as he has a physical body. It is not a challenge to the physical laws: “I have become a devotee. I challenge everything.” That is foolishness.
Bob: But let us say when I–in the town I live in, I take boiled water because some of the water has disease in it. Now, why should I drink boiled water if I have been good enough not to get a disease? Then I may drink any water. And if I have been not acting properly. then I shall get disease anyway.
Srila Prabhupada: So long as you are in the material world, you cannot neglect physical laws. Suppose you go to a jungle and there is a tiger. It is known that it will attack you, so why should you voluntarily go and be attacked? It is not that a devotee should take physical risk so long as he has a physical body. It is not a challenge to the physical laws: “I have become a devotee. I challenge everything.” That is foolishness.

Perfect Questions, Perfect Answers, 9:

Srila Prabhupada: “That’s all right. He may eat anything. He is powerful. But he has ordered, “Thou shalt not kill. You must stop killing.” He is powerful. He can eat the whole world. But you cannot compare to Jesus Christ. You cannot imitate Jesus Christ; you have to abide by his order. Then you are guided by Jesus Christ. That is actually obedience. That is explained in the Bhagavata. One who is isvara, who is empowered, can do anything, but we cannot imitate. We have to abide by his order: “What he says to me, that I will do.” You cannot imitate. You say that Jesus Christ ate meat. Admitting that, you do not know in what condition he ate meat. He is himself eating meat, but he is advising others not to kill. Do you think that Jesus Christ was contradicting himself?


To be continued…




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