So we have to qualify ourselves. So that qualification is, here it is stated, ye yathā māṁ prapadyante. If you try to surrender yourself into Kṛṣṇa consciousness... Just like Kṛṣṇa is canvassing, asking Arjuna, sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇam: (BG 18.66) "You just try to surrender unto Me, and I shall give you all protection." And just I described a few minutes before that Kṛṣṇa is seated along with you in the same tree of this body. He is just waiting for your voluntary looking unto Him. That's it. He does not press you. He gives you all instruction.
Just like Kṛṣṇa gave all instruction of Bhagavad-gītā to Arjuna, but at last, He asked him, "My dear Arjuna, I have given you all instruction. Whether you have understood it? And how you are going to follow? Have you decided to follow Me?" Just see. He does not say that "I force you to follow," no. He asked him, "Now, have you decided to follow Me?" And He gives him the, I mean to say, full independence—yathecchasi tathā kuru: (BG 18.63) "Now I have given you all instruction. Now it is up to you. You can do whatever you like."
So our position is always like that. Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Lord, or His bona fide representatives who come here, they can force you to go back to Godhead, but they do not do that. They want your voluntary cooperation. Unless you are prepared to cooperate voluntarily oh, there is no question of my improvement. So we must accept our voluntary cooperation with Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Lord, or His representative who comes before you to canvass, "My dear sir, please be Kṛṣṇa conscious. Please look to the leadership of the Supreme Lord." Now it is up to you.
Now, He says that "Actually they are following my leadership." Because they are servant, they are followers of leader. They are servant of some created leader materially. So that means there is a propensity, that intrinsic background of following some leader, is there. That you cannot avoid. That you cannot avoid. Mama vartmānuvartante manuṣyāḥ pārtha sarvaśaḥ. They have to... Every man has to follow the same principle. He cannot go out of it. His constitutional position is to follow a leader. He cannot go out of it. Nobody can go out of it. He has to follow either A, B, C, or D, or anyone. He has to select.
Just like I'll give you another example. According to Manu-saṁhitā, our Vedic literature, the Manu-saṁhitā says, na striyaṁ svatantratām arhati: "Women should not be given independence" or "Women are not independent." That is a truth, Vedic truth. Now, so far a girl is child, she is dependent on the father, and it is hoped... At least in India we have got this principle. When a girl is grown up, the father gives her in charity to a boy to protect her, protect her, give her protection. And similarly, when a woman is grown up, old enough, she becomes protected by the grown up boys, children. So this Vedic truth that a woman has no independence... She is always under the protection, either under the protection of the father or under the protection of the husband or under the protection of the grown-up sons. That is position. And woman becomes happy in that way. Those who are not following this principle, I think they are not happy. This Vedic principle is truth.
So as the woman or the child requires the protection of somebody, similarly, by nature we are under the protection of some leader. But that supreme leadership is vested in the Supreme Lord. And when we do not accept the leadership of the Supreme, then we have to accept somebody else, ABCD, as our leader and they will misguide us. Andhā yathāndhair upanīya... How they are misguiding, just try to understand. How our leaders are misguiding us, just try to understand.
In the Bhāgavata it is said,
- na te viduḥ svārtha-gatiṁ hi viṣṇuṁ
- durāśayā ye bahir-artha-māninaḥ
- andhā yathāndhair upanīyamānās
- te 'pīśa-tantryām uru-dāmni baddhāḥ
- (SB 7.5.31)
"People deluded by the material nature do not know what is the ultimate goal of life. The ultimate goal of life is Viṣṇu." Viṣṇu means self-realization, the supreme soul. Why they do not know it?
Now, durāśayā ye bahir-artha-māninaḥ: "They have accepted this external, deluded nature as the goal of life." They want to be happy by adjustment of this material nature. This is durāśayā. Durāśayā means... Duḥ means a difficult, a far away. This hope will never be satisfied. They have made it a point to forget God for good, and they want to make it a point that "We shall be happy in this material world by adjustment of our scientific or so-called knowledge."
And the leaders who are leading them in that way, what sort of leader they are? Andhā yathāndhair upanīyamānāḥ (SB 7.5.31). Andha, just like a blind man. Sometimes you see a blind man is in this side of the street. He is asking somebody, "Kindly take me to the other side." But if another blind man comes, "All right, I will help you." So what he will help him? The man who wants help to go to the other side, he is seeking for help, and another blind man comes, "All right, I shall help you." So that help is that in the middle of the street they will be smashed. Both of them will be smashed. So similarly, our leadership is like that. Our leaders, they are compact by the laws of nature, and they are proclaiming that "I am leader."