Question (Indian man): I have got a doubt about this Hiraṇyākṣa, Prahlāda's father...
Indian: Hiraṇyakaśipu. Because God has taken the shape of a Narasiṁha Swami and then He finishes him by tearing his stomach. And then He takes all the intestines and pushes out. That is the picture normally shown. What is the significance and how this is actually, what it is meaning? Why He is this sort of picture is being given and everywhere I see this picture in town and everywhere right from my childhood. I have been seeing this. What does this signify?
Prabhupāda: It is no significant. Keśava dhṛta-nara-hari-rūpa.
- tava kara-kamala-vare nakham adbhuta-śṛṅgaṁ
- keśava dhṛta-nara-hari-rūpa, nṛsiṁha-rūpe
- jaya jagadīśa hare **
So Kṛṣṇa assumed the nara-hari, nṛsiṁha-rūpa, half-man, half-lion. So these are description in the śāstras.
- rāmādi-mūrtiṣu kalā-niyamena tiṣṭhan
- nānāvatāram akarod bhuvaneṣu kintu
- kṛṣṇaḥ svayaṁ samabhavat paramaḥ pumān yo
- govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam...
- (Bs. 5.39)
So there is no significance. This Hiraṇyakaśipu wanted to become immortal. Then, when he was refused by Lord Brahmā that "You cannot become immortal, that is not possible," then, in a roundabout way, he took benediction from Lord Brahmā that he would not die on land, on water, on the sky, no weapon can kill him, no demigod can kill him. In this way, roundabout way, he thought now he has become immortal. So to keep the words of Brahmā as it is, the Lord assumed a form which is not within his description. And instead of killing him with a weapon He killed him by the nails. Nail is not considered as a weapon. So He killed him between day and night, because he also took benediction that "I shall not die during daytime or nighttime." So God, Kṛṣṇa, is so intelligent that we may try to become immortal by so many scientific brain, but there will be some flaw and he wants, must be killed. This is God's intelligence
Indian lady: Swamiji, what would happen if a person (unintelligible)
Prabhupāda: I cannot follow.
Indian lady: (unintelligible)
Pradyumna: In college if they start to study biology or zoology, it involves killing animals, dissection. Is that a sin?
Prabhupāda: Yes, certainly. You cannot kill even an ant.
Indian lady: Then you could give up such study?
Prabhupāda: That is your business. What can I say? (laughter) But any kind of animal killing is sin, sinful. (break) Kṛṣṇa says, sarva-yoniṣu sambhavanti mūrtayo yāḥ, tāsāṁ mahad yonir brahma ahaṁ bīja-pradaḥ pitā (BG 14.4). Kṛṣṇa says that "I am the seed-giving father of all living entities in any form." Sarva-yoniṣu. Sarva means all, 8,400,000 species and forms. So Kṛṣṇa is the father, and all living entities are part and parcel of the Lord. They have different dresses according to different karma, but actually, every living entity is part and parcel of God, sons. So suppose a father has got ten sons and one of them or two of them are useless. So if the elder brother wants to make some experiment by killing the younger brother, would the father be pleased? No. Father will be sorry even the intelligent boy is killed or the dull boy is killed. For father, there is no such distinction. Similarly, you cannot kill animals without being sanctioned. That sanction is in the sacrifice. I have already explained, for testing. According to Vedic system, if you kill anybody, then you must be responsible for the sinful life. (end)