Srila A.C.Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Alcohol and Drug Hospital People
Perth, May 16, 1975
Paramahamsa: ...to solve the problem of drug and
alcohol addiction and, of course, they're concerned with the causes of
it and things like that.
Prabhupada: So you can send all these alcohol
and drug patients here and they will be cured. These boys, American and
European boys, they were all addicted to alcohol, drugs. Now they have
given up. Practical.
Guest (1): In what way would they cure?
Prabhupada: Simply I say that "If you want to
be my student, then you must give up four things: illicit sex, meat-eating,
intoxication, and gambling." This is my condition. So they give up, and
they become my student.
Guest (2): Do they suffer withdrawal symptoms?
Paramahamsa: He says, "Do they suffer withdrawal
symptoms?" Sometimes when a patient is giving up alcohol or drugs, he goes
through various symptoms which are painful.
Prabhupada: Yes, yes. That should be... But unless...
Find out this, param drstva nivartate. Rasa-varjam raso 'py asya param
Devotee (2): "The embodied soul may be restricted
from sense enjoyment, though the taste for sense objects remains. But,
ceasing such engagements by experiencing a higher taste, he is fixed in
Devotee (2): Purport? "Unless one is transcendentally
situated, it is not possible to cease from sense enjoyment. The process
of restriction from sense enjoyment by rules and regulations is something
like restricting a diseased person from certain types of edibles. The patient,
however, neither likes such restriction, nor loses his taste for edibles.
Similarly, sense restriction by some spiritual process like astanga-yoga,
in the matter of yama, niyama, asana, pranayama, pratyahara, dharana, dhyana,
etc., is recommended for less intelligent persons who have no better knowledge.
But one who has tasted the beauty of the Supreme Lord Krsna in the course
of his advancement in Krsna consciousness no longer has a taste for dead
material things. Therefore, restrictions are there for the less intelligent
neophytes in the spiritual advancement of life, but such restrictions are
only good if one actually has a taste for Krsna consciousness. When one
is actually Krsna conscious, he automatically loses his taste for pale
Guest (1): What is Krsna consciousness, if I might
Prabhupada: Tell him.
Paramahamsa: Well, Krsna is the Supreme Lord,
or the Supreme Soul, and we are all individual souls. So naturally we have
an awareness of our relationship with Krsna, or God. When we say God or
Krsna, we don't mean my God or your God, but we mean God, no matter which
religion we're speaking of. So all of us naturally have a capacity to love
Krsna, or God, and we can awaken this relationship with Him. And when that
is awakened, then all unwanted things disappear, because everybody is actually
frustrated, looking for permanent happiness in this temporary world. But
when we awaken our Krsna consciousness then all of those frustrations disappear,
and so all such problems like drug addiction become unnecessary.
Guest (2): How long does this process of withdrawal
Paramahamsa: He says how long does it take to
stop taking drugs by the process of Krsna consciousness?
Prabhupada: If one lives with us at least for
six months, he will give up.
Guest (2): Six months. And are there cases which
Paramahamsa: He says, "Are there cases of...,
which relapse? Persons who begin to withdraw from drugs...?"
Prabhupada: Maybe one in five hundred.
Guest (2): One in five hundred.
Prabhupada: There is. Everyone is prone to fall
down. But that percentage is very low, say, one in five hundred. We have
got about ten thousand students all over the world. Out of them, they have
fallen about ten or, say, fifteen, that's all.
Guest (2): You means you have ten thousand students
who used to be addicted to something?
Prabhupada: Yes. Addicted to everything; illicit
sex, meat-eating, intoxication, and gambling. And now they have given up
Guest (2): And those who relapse, can they be
Paramahamsa: Those who have relapsed, can they
be treated again?
Prabhupada: Ah, yes, that I say. Say, utmost,
ten out of ten thousand.
Paramahamsa: He says, "Can they be treated again,
a second time?"
Prabhupada: Oh, yes. Even American government
is pleased with this movement because they have spent so much millions
of dollars for stopping LSD, and they are surprised that when the people
come here, they give up.
Guest (3): Do you teach abstinence or moderation
in the use of these things?
Prabhupada: No, we say "Stop." We don't allow
even smoking and drinking tea. That is also intoxication. We are so strict.
But still, they give up. None of us take tea. We eat very simple things,
vegetables, wheat, rice, little milk, that's all.
Guest (1): Did you say you eat meat?
Paramahamsa: Wheat, wheat.
Guest (1): Wheat. Ah. Is there any reason why
you don't, you prohibit people from eating meat?
Prabhupada: Because it is sinful. It is sinful.
According to Vedic conception, these four things are sinful activities,
four pillars. Just like four pillars, the legs of this table, similarly,
illicit sex, meat-eating, intoxication, and gambling are the four legs
of sinful life.
Guest (1): What do you consider illicit sex?
Prabhupada: Illicit sex means animal life. The
marriage is in the human society, not in the dog society. So if one has
illicit sex, that means he is no better than dog.
Guest (2): I don't quite understand that. Did
you say that illicit means sex between people who are not married?
Prabhupada: Yes. Sex is allowed only married couple.
And that is also only for begetting child.
Guest (1): Married under what law? Under what
religion? Under what religious law?
Prabhupada: There is in Bhagavad-gita, that dharmaviruddhah
kamo 'smi. Find out. You can come here and read.
Paramahamsa: Which was that? Dharma...
Prabhupada: Dharmaviruddhah kamo 'smi.
Paramahamsa: Dharmaviruddho bhutesu?
Prabhupada: No, dharmaviruddhah kamo 'smi. Dharma-aviruddha.
You know that verse.
Paramahamsa: Is that balam balavatam caham?
Prabhupada: Ah, yes, yes, yes.
Guest (1): You can follow actually? What does that
exactly mean? It's a direct translation, I think.
Translation: "I am the strength of the strong, devoid of
passion and desire. I am sex life which is not contrary to religious
principles, O Lord of the Bharatas, Arjuna."
balam balavatam caham
kamo 'smi bharatarsabha
Paramahamsa: He says, "What does that exactly
Prabhupada: Explain to him.
Paramahamsa: Well, as it explains here, "The strong
man's strength should be applied to protect the weak, not for personal
aggression. Similarly, sex life, according to religious principles, dharma,
should be for the propagation of children, not otherwise. The responsibility
of parents is then to make their offspring Krsna conscious."
Guest (2): The question was which religion, which
Paramahamsa: Well, he means our marriage under...
We accept that marriage, sex life in marriage, is licit, not illicit. So
he asked, "Under what religious principles or under which religion?"
Prabhupada: Any religion. Christian religion does
not allow illicit sex. No adultery.
Guest (2): Any religious principles?
Prabhupada: This is religious principle. In the
animal kingdom there is no marriage, but in the human society, may be Christian,
may be Hindu, may be Muslim, there is marriage system. That is religious
Guest (2): Is polygamy illicit?
Guest (2): Not illicit. But it is...
Prabhupada: Polygamy means if it is married. Just
like in the Vedic society they used to marry many wives. Just like Krsna.
Krsna had sixteen thousand wives. And He maintained them sixteen thousand
palaces. And He expanded Himself into sixteen thousand Krsnas. So that
is a different thing; He is God. But if you can maintain each and every
wife, you can marry more than one wife. But if you are unable to maintain,
that is illicit. All the ksatriya kings, they used to marry more than one
wife. Still in India, the ksatriyas, kings, they have more than one wife.
But they maintain very nicely.
Guest (2): But your method of curing drug addiction
has no definite practical use, surely.
Prabhupada: Why not practical?
Guest (2): Not everyone who wants to stop taking
drugs can spend six months in solitude or in a company like yours.
Paramahamsa: He says he finds it not practical
because not everyone who is addicted to drugs can spend six months in a
temple with us.
Prabhupada: They are spending years. They are
all European, Americans. They are not Indians. We have got here... You
go to Melbourne. We have got big branch. In Sydney we have got. In Europe.
They are doing that. It requires training, proper training. Then it will
Guest (1): Well, if there is someone who wouldn't
like to perhaps join this religion, but still wants to get treated...
Prabhupada: This is not religion. This is a culture.
Guest (1): Oh. Yes, this culture...
Prabhupada: Because we are admitting persons from
various religions, various nations, various countries, and they accept
this culture and they become purified.
Guest (1): Do they have to wear those clothes
and shave their heads and chanting those things...
Prabhupada: That is optional. That is also optional.
That is not compulsory. But in India because the brahmacaris, sannyasis,
they dress in a particular way, they do that. But that is not compulsory.
But it has got a psychological effect, because whenever we go, people chant
"Hare Krsna!" So by this dress, we give chance, the other men, to chant
Guest (1): Well, could you correct me if I'm wrong.
We have a society called Ramakrishna Society, a society in Burma. Those
people who founded this society and are practicing Krsna culture, they
don't wear those things, or they don't chant in their temple, but they
do all sorts of social welfare type of thing. Is there any difference between...
Prabhupada: Ramakrishna Mission is not Vedic.
It is a creation of Vivekananda's concoction. It is not Vedic. Just like
they created a God, Ramakrishna. So that is not a Vedic sanction, that
you create any fool rascal, a god.
Guest (1): Isn't yours a product of or derivative
Prabhupada: Yes, completely.
Guest (1): So how would you...
Prabhupada: Just like whatever question you are
asking, we are answering from Vedic literature. We are not answering ourself.
That is the difference. The evidence is from the Vedic literature. I don't
say that "In my opinion it is like this." We don't say.
Guest (1): I'm sorry, I missed that point. Could
you please explain?
Paramahamsa: He said it is Vedic because the answers
he is giving are not his opinion or concoction, but he is giving from the
Vedic knowledge or the Vedic scriptures instead of making up his own opinion.
That is the meaning of Vedic; it is based on the Vedic teachings exactly.
Guest (1): But the Ramakrishna wasn't.
Guest (1): They formed their own way.
Guest (2): Do you consider that this kind of practice
or the practicing this kind of culture is regimentated? A person has to
come in and spend some times in the temple, and...
Prabhupada: Yes, the association, the influence
of association. If you go to a drunkard association, you become a drunkard.
And if you go to a saintly association, you become a saint. Sangat sanjayate
kamah. Find out.
Prabhupada: If one becomes lusty and if it is not
fulfilled, he becomes angry. This is all psychological.
Translation: "While contemplating the objects of the senses,
a person develops attachment for them, and from such attachment lust develops,
and from lust anger arises."
dhyayato visayan pumsah
sangat sanjayate kamah
kamat krodho 'bhijayate
Guest (2): Yeah, well, when a person is attached
to that group in the temple, isn't this, become a lust too? You see, being
influenced by the group and also attached to the people...
Prabhupada: We are teaching to be influenced by
Krsna. Therefore we have written fifty books like that, four hundred pages.
You can show some of our books.
Paramahamsa: This is Srimad-Bhagavatam, Volume
Two, Volume Four...
Prabhupada: Sixty volumes.
Paramahamsa: Nectar of Devotion.
Guest (4): You seem to be placing a lot of emphasis
on books. Are you following any particular path of yoga, niyama-yoga...?
Paramahamsa: She says we place a lot of emphasis
on books, and she wonders if we are following a particular path such as
dhyana-yoga or jnana-yoga or what?
Guest (4): Bhakti-yoga.
Prabhupada: There are different types of yogas.
And you will find
You have found out? Read it.
yoginam api sarvesam
sraddhavan bhajate yo mam
sa me yuktatamo matah
Prabhupada: This is bhakti-yoga.
Translation: "And of all yogis, he who always abides in Me
with great faith, worshiping Me in transcendental loving service, is most
intimately united with Me in yoga and is the highest of all."
yoginam api sarvesam
sraddhavan bhajate yo mam
sa me yuktatamo matah
Guest (2): Well, doesn't it mean that someone
has to worship that person to be able to attain the enlightenment or Krsna
Prabhupada: Yes, everyone is worshiping a person.
Everyone is... But we have to worship the Supreme Person. That is perfect.
Everyone is worshiping a person. Suppose you are employed somewhere. You
have to worship your boss. Otherwise no employment.
Guest (2): Oh, well, I consider it as a mutual...
Prabhupada: It is mutual. It is mutual.
Guest (2): It's a mutual kind of support. But
worshiping in a sense of religion or in a sense of a higher person, it's
a different matter.
Prabhupada: Worshiping means appreciating high
qualities. Worshiping is not blind. If I know that you have some high qualities,
I worship you.
Guest (2): Do you worship to a person or what?
To his doctrines or...?
Prabhupada: Worship means person. Worship does
not mean imperson. Unless there is a person-to-person relationship, there
is no question of worship.
Guest (2): Is... This picture of Sri Visnu, it's
the person who you worship or...?
Guest (2): He is the creator.
Guest (2): And, in the sense that He is called
Prabhupada: Krsna is His another form. Krsna is
Visnu's another form.
Guest (2): I see, yes.
Prabhupada: Find out, aham adir hi devanam.
Guest (3): What is your correlation between belief
and science? You mentioned that science is involved.
Guest (3): Yes.
Prabhupada: Yes. What do you mean by science?
Guest (3): Well, the human sciences or otherwise
is a study on its own. What is the relationship or the link-up between
that and your faith?
Prabhupada: The relationship--God is the creator
of everything. So everything has got relationship with God. So what do
you think of this science? The Vedanta-sutra, it says, athato brahma-jijnasa:
"Now this human life is meant for understanding the science of God." So
the question is what is God? The answer is: janmady asya yatah. "God or
the Supreme Absolute Truth is that from whom everything has come." So this
is our science, the origin of everything.
Guest (3): Yes, the origin of everything. But
why is it necessary for man to have to discover? I mean, man discovered
the cure for poliomyelitis.
Prabhupada: Why man discovers?
Guest (3): Yes, well, I'm using it as an example.
Prabhupada: But he... Just like... It is not the
question of discover, but because you are existing, you must have come
from a father. That is science. It is not the question of finding out a
father. Without father, there is no existence of you. It is not the question
of finding out a father. Father must be there. This is science. Without
father, is there any existence of any man or any animal? What your science
says? Is it possible that anyone is existing without a father? What do
Guest (4): I was just wondering, um, do you believe
Prabhupada: Who is there independently existing
without having a father? What is that science?
Guest (2): It's not necessarily in the science
Prabhupada: No, no, this is a sign, that if there
is a man, he must have a father. This is science. So what is your opinion
about this science?
Guest (1): I see it as a straight, deductive logic.
If there is a...
Prabhupada: ...son, there must be father. That
Guest (1): Don't you think this kind of reasoning
is a deductive logic rather than inductive?
Prabhupada: No, what is the reasoning yours, that
you deny father?
Guest (3): The father must have a father too,
Prabhupada: Yes. Similarly, there must be supreme father.
Guest (3): Well, who is the supreme father's father?
Prabhupada: Yes, that is enquiry, that you have
got your father, your father has got father, he has got his father, he
has got... Who is the supreme father? He is God.
Guest (1): Who is God's father?
Prabhupada: Nobody is His father. That is God.
God is everyone's father, but He is without father. That is God. So long
one has got father, he is not God. When you come to the point that here
is the person who has no father, He is independent, that is God. The definition
of God is given in the Vedic literature.
Anadi means He has no beginning. But He is the beginning
of everything. This is simple definition of God. Anadi... Anadi means He
has no beginning. But He is the beginning of everything. Anadir adir govindah
sarva-karana-karanam, the cause of all causes.
isvarah paramah krsnah
anadir adir govindah
Guest (1): It becomes a belief rather than a logic
now, then, for when we think about the God. You were saying everybody has
father, so why God, in exception, He hasn't got a father?
Prabhupada: Therefore He is God, that He can exist
without father. But you cannot exist without father. That is the difference
between you and God.
Guest (2): Is God in the form of male or female
Prabhupada: He is male. Otherwise how He can beget?
Female cannot beget without man's contact. The prakrti, the nature, is
female, and God is male. Find out this verse,
murtayah sambhavanti yah
tasam brahma mahad yonir
aham bija-pradah pita
"It should be understood that all species of life, O son
of Kunti, are made possible by birth in this material nature, and that
I am the seed-giving father."
murtayah sambhavanti yah
tasam brahma mahad yonir
aham bija-pradah pita
Prabhupada: So material nature is the mother,
and God is the father.
Guest (2): But to whom did God give the seed?
Prabhupada: The prakrti, material nature. That
is said here. Just like for begetting a child, both the father and mother
requires. So the material nature is the mother, and God is the father.
So so many forms of life are coming from the womb of material nature. This
body is made of matter. This body is earth, water, air, fire, like that.
This is made of... But I am the soul. That is from God. I am part and parcel
of God, as soul. Mamaivamso jiva-bhutah. Find out.
"Translation. The living entities in this conditional
world are My eternal, fragmental parts. Due to conditioned life, they are
struggling very hard with the six senses, which include the mind."
Guest (2): Is there an animal soul, Swami?
Prabhupada: Yes. Because it is already said, sarva-yonisu,
"all forms of life." Even ant, tree, birds, plant, trees, everything. There
are 8,400,000 forms of life. All of them, the soul is there. And they have
got different... Just like you are differently dressed, I am differently
dressed, but you are also soul, I am also soul.
Guest (4): You're really talking about the atman?
Prabhupada: Atma, yes, soul is atma.
And the soul of the soul is God, Paramatma.
Guest (2): Is it possible for us to communicate
Paramahamsa: With plants. Is it possible for us
to communicate with plants?
Prabhupada: Yes, they have done. Sir Jagadish
Candra Bose in Calcutta, Bose Institute, he has proved--he has got machine--that
they feel pains and pleasure, which is recorded in the machine. If you
pluck one leaf, they feel. Immediately it is recorded in the machine.
Guest (2): Could I come back to that eating of
meat? Related to this alive, soul, matter. Aren't you in a sense eating
another soul too if you're eating vegetables? Not only if you're eating
Prabhupada: No, the thing is, the material world...
It is said, jivo jivasya jivanam: "One living entity has to eat another
living entity to keep himself alive." That is the natural law. But you
should have discrimination. Because you have to eat some other living entity,
it does not mean that you will eat your own son. You cannot support that
"Because I have to live by eating another living entity, so what is the
wrong if I eat my son?" Therefore the Vedic injunction is tena tyaktena
bhunjitha. You are given some jurisdiction. You can eat. And actually you
do so. Because I have to eat something, we do not eat anything and everything.
We have got discrimination. So according to Bhagavad-gita... Find out this
verse, patram puspam phalam toyam yo me bhaktya prayacchati.
patram puspam phalam toyam
yo me bhaktya prayacchati
tad aham bhakty-upahrtam
Translation: "If one offers Me with love and devotion
a leaf, a flower, fruit or water, I will accept it."
Prabhupada: So our Krsna consciousness movement we
accept what is eaten by Krsna. So Krsna wants these things: fruits, flower,
vegetable, grains, milk. So we offer them and eat.
Guest (2): Why not animals?
Prabhupada: He does not say, "Give Me animals."
Because we are Krsna conscious, we cannot take anything which is not accepted
Guest (2): Are blood transfusions permissible,
Paramahamsa: He says, "Are blood transfusions
permissible?" When one is in an accident or cut and he loses blood, they
take another man's blood and put it it. He says...
Prabhupada: Well, that is not bad. Because if
one life is saved by transfusion admission... He is not dying. He is living.
He is contributing his blood. So if he is contributing, you are saving
some life, there is no harm.
Guest (2): But blood is animal tissue. (break)
Prabhupada: How they liked?
Paramahamsa: Um, the younger ones liked better.
The nurse was asking where she could..., if she could refer people to visit
us here, and I told her we don't know if this will be the permanent address,
but as soon as we have a permanent address here I'll notify her. But she
was wondering if she could send people, if the people would be welcome
to come and visit and see the place here. And the Buddhist boy, he bought
an incense from us. He said, "Where is that nice smell coming from?" I
said, "Incense." He said, "I want some." The other gentlemen I don't...
They're more set in their ways kind of men. I couldn't tell whether they
were impressed or not. They don't express very well.
Prabhupada: But all their questions were answered.
Paramahamsa: Yes. When you told him where is the
man who has, where is the person who did not come from a father, he began
to... Before that, he was going to challenge whether this was science or
belief, but then he had to be quiet. He just mumbled.
Prabhupada: And they inquired, "Then God has father?"
No, God without father. That is God. That is the distinction between ordinary
living entity and God.
Paramahamsa: So I will try to arrange someone
for tonight and tomorrow morning; that geographer, I hope. And the people
from the radio conversation. They're very well known, actually. Because
I asked the geographer man, I said, "Do you know this man, Tim Downs?"
And he said, "Oh, yes. I have heard him many times."
Prabhupada: Tim Down?
Paramahamsa: Tim Downs. He is the man who may
come from radio to make a conversation. Then they will play it on radio.
But I have to find out if he's coming. And in the case that there may be
three people who want to come, so would it be possible for tonight to having
two, maybe five o'clock and seven o'clock or something like that?
Paramahamsa: Yes. I will keep in touch with those
people and let them know. I will send them some literature too. Should
I go and telephone those people?
Prabhupada: Um hm. (end)
(Perth, May 16, 1975 - 750516TA.PER) (c)
1991 by Bhaktivedanta Book Trust
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