|Prabhupada Letters :: 1970
a.c. bhaktivedanta swami
Jul 9, 2006
9 July, 1970 Los Angeles
My Dear Jagadisa,
Please accept my blessings. I beg to acknowledge receipt of your letter dated 29th June, 1970, and noted the contents.
I am very glad that you are all devotees working hard to improve the temple in both appearance and program. I understand that you are doing very nicely on Sankirtana Party and now you have been able to purchase a Sankirtana van for travelling. So you do this work of pushing on Krsna consciousness movement very enthusiastically and Krsna will help you to overcome all impediments in the matter of discharging your sincere devotional service to the Lord.
I am especially happy whenever I learn that my books and literature are being widely distributed, so it is very good news to learn that you are also selling so many of our literatures. In this connection, however, you should see that the daily sales are recorded duly and at the end of the week the amount owed for these sold literatures should be sent by check to L.A.
I have already advised these things to you in my letter sent last week. Anyway, the idea is that now we are increasing in size of our organization and also our expenditures for literatures are increasing so we must do everything very carefully so that there will not be any difficulty.
You have written that your temple is like an oasis in a desert. Yes, it is a fact that our temples are providing shelter from the burning forest fires of material existence. It does not matter poor quarter or richer quarter, our temples are nothing to do with any material situation. They are situated in the Spiritual sky and as such they are the only alternative offering relief from the miseries of all kinds of material conditions of life.
So encourage people to come and spend time with us in the temple and become purified from all contaminations and anxieties. Everyone is suffering from thirst for spiritual life or Krsna consciousness and it is the temple which can offer them Krsna Consciousness to satisfy their thirsting.
Regarding your temple schedule of study, it is alright so continue your classes regularly and try to understand the philosophy as it is--that is required.
I have been informed by Devananda that your wife has borne you one nice son. So this is very good news. You may give him the name Nirmala Candra. Nirmala means without any flaws or without contamination and Candra means moon. So the name Nirmala Candra refers specifically to Lord Caitanya who is known as the Spotless Moon of Gauda. Now you, husband and wife, must work together combinedly with great responsibility for raising your new child in ideal Krsna consciousness.
Children learn by imitation of their parents, so if you both set Krsna conscious example the child will very naturally and easily become advanced in Krsna consciousness by following. Please offer my blessings to your good wife, Laksmimoni, and your son.
Regarding your several questions: Where are the spirit souls coming from that are taking microbe bodies? It is not a matter of any particular body. These spirit souls and all spirit souls are coming from Vaikuntha, but in these material worlds they are taking various grades of bodies according to their material activities. There is no "new" soul. "New" and "old" are due to this material body, but the soul is never born and never dies, so if there is no birth how there can be new soul?
Your second question: Is there any particular reason why some spirit souls become directed toward Krsna Consciousness in the first place? How does one get on the progressive path of elevation to Krsna Consciousness?
The answer is that it is by the mercy of the Lord that one comes in contact with a Spiritual Master Who can revive the dormant Krsna consciousness of the conditioned soul. Krsna is always merciful and He comes Himself, He leaves behind Him instruction like the Bhagavad-gita, etc. and He sends His representative, the Spiritual Master. In this way the merciful propaganda is going on.
Every individual soul has got the discriminating power, so those who are pious they take advantage of this opportunity of the mercy of the Lord. But both pious and impious souls are being convinced by this Krsna consciousness movement. The human being is supposed to be intelligent more than the animals, so the intelligent persons or pious persons are coming in contact with Krsna consciousness.
Regarding your questions with reference to B.G. III,5, and the Vedic hymn quoted in the purport to B.g. 14.15 and the statement ". . . when the living entity is bewildered in his desires, the Lord allows him to fulfill those desires . . ." You have quoted, "The Lord engages the living entity in pious activities so he may be elevated. The Lord engages him in impious activities so he may go to hell . . ."
So that is also originally the individual soul's desire and as Supersoul the Lord is giving everyone the opportunity to go to heaven or to hell or to Vaikuntha if he so desires. For those who are hankering after material opportunities the Lord as Supersoul is giving them the opportunities to enjoy the material nature and the facility is being supplied by the material nature.
Similarly, a living entity who is desiring for spiritual upliftment, the Lord is giving him the opportunity of the Vedic literatures and the Spiritual Master. But His advice to all living entities is to give up all nonsense and everything else and surrender unto Him. The living entity by accepting one kind of opportunity is going to hell and by accepting the other kinds of opportunities he is going back to home, back to Godhead.
So both opportunities are offered by the Lord. Therefore indirectly you can say that one is being sent to hell and one is being sent to the spiritual world by the Lord--but He is simply supplying the opportunities to everyone as he desires. The intelligent person therefore does not desire anything--he simply surrenders unto the Lord or he desires to serve the Lord and that is his greatest opportunity.
"Man proposes and God disposes." That is the sum and substance. But as a pure devotee of the Lord you should not propose--simply accept His proposal and surrender unto Him. So far the conditioned soul is concerned the same opportunities are there, but if he does not take advantage of the opportunity to elevate himself to Krsna Consciousness and chooses to misuse his independence for taking the opportunity to enjoy some material happiness, then he will remain conditioned as the Lord will allow him to fulfill those desires.
The opportunity is always there, just as we are offering so many ways to become Krsna Conscious, but if you don't take the opportunity what can I do. That is purposeful negligence of duty. The example may be given of a man who is sleeping. If he is actually sleeping, he may be wakened by various means, but there is no doubt that he must wake up. However, if a man is pretending to be asleep there is no way at all to rouse him up.
Hope this will meet you in good health.
Your ever well-wisher,
A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
ACBS:db letters | 19:25 |