Prabhupāda: (lecture translated into Italian throughout) Ladies and gentlemen, I wish to thank you for your kindly participating in this festival. This Hare Kṛṣṇa movement is a spiritual movement. There is spirit soul within the body, and the material body is covering, just like shirt and coat, of the spirit soul. The spirit soul somehow or other is encaged within this material body. The problems of life there are many, but they are pertaining to the body. Real problem is how to get the spirit soul out of this material encagement. The body has got attachment for material enjoyment. Therefore in this verse it is said, vīta-rāga, how to become detached from this material attachment. Rāga means attachment; vīta-rāga, giving up this attachment. Vīta-rāga-bhaya-krodhāḥ (BG 2.56). Bhaya means fearfulness, and krodha means anger. Because we are attached to the material enjoyment, we are also very much always fearful how our enjoyment may not be disturbed. And if our material enjoyment is not fulfilled, we become angry. This is our position on account of this material body. Therefore spiritual culture means how to get out of this attachment, fearfulness and the position of becoming angry.
These things can be attained by Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Man-mayā. Kṛṣṇa says, "When you are fully absorbed in My thought, you can get free from all these material disturbances." Kṛṣṇa says, man-manā bhava mad-bhakto mad-yājī māṁ namaskuru (BG 18.65). He says that, "Always think of Me, become a devotee of Me, worship Me, and offer your obeisances unto Me." So in order to attain this perfection of life, one has to make this progressive spiritual advancement. Vīta-rāga-bhaya-krodhā man-mayā mām upāśritāḥ (BG 4.10). One has to take shelter of Kṛṣṇa or His representative. Therefore this movement is to give chance to the people how to think of Kṛṣṇa constantly. The human form of life is meant for attaining jñāna. Jñāna means knowledge that "I am not this body. I am spirit soul." This jñāna can be attained by tapasya. Tapasya means austerity. And if we attain knowledge and undergo austerities, then we become purified. Therefore,
- man-mayā mām upāśritāḥ
- bahavo jñāna-tapasā
- pūtā mad-bhāvam āgatāḥ
- (BG 4.10)
That the whole aim is how to get out of this material attachment, and in our spiritual body, we go back to home back to Godhead.
Actually, at the present moment, there is no education of the understanding of spiritual life. Everyone is interested with this material body only. Nobody is educated, neither interested in the spiritual life. But unless you take interest in spiritual life, our this material condition of miserable life will continue. The miserable conditions of material life have been pointed out by Śrī Kṛṣṇa in the Bhagavad-gītā. Kṛṣṇa says that the problem of life is janma-mṛtyu-jarā-vyādhi (BG 13.9), meaning that birth, death, old age and disease, these are our problems. So long we are materially attached, we have to accept a type of body according to our resultant action of activities. There are 8,400,000 species of bodies. And after death, we have to accept one of the bodies. In the Bhagavad-gītā it is said, tathā dehāntara-prāptiḥ (BG 2.13). We have to accept another body. We do not know what kind of body we are going to accept again. But you can accept a..., one of the bodies as you select. That selection must be made in this life.
In the Bhagavad-gītā it is said that if you like, you can go to the heavenly planets, higher planetary system. Yānti deva-vratā devān (BG 9.25). In the higher planetary systems, you get more, I mean to say, elevated standard of life. You can live there for millions of years, and there is better facilities for sense enjoyment. But anywhere you go within this material world, you cannot avoid the four principles, namely birth, death, old age and disease. The birth, death, old age and disease are the inconveniences of the body. The spirit soul has no birth, no death, no old age and no disease, neither the spirit soul is annihilated after the destruction of this body. Na hanyate hanyamāne śarīre (BG 2.20). This is the statement of the Bhagavad-gītā, that after the annihilation of this body, the spirit soul does not annihilate. So Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is to stop this disease: birth, death, old age and disease. And this can be achieved very easily if you simply try to understand what is Kṛṣṇa. It is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā,
- janma karma me divyaṁ
- yo jānāti tattvataḥ
- tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma
- naiti mām eti kaunteya
- (BG 4.9)
Means that if you simply try to understand what is Kṛṣṇa, why does He appear in this material world, what are His actual activities—if these three things you can understand, then after giving up this body, you don't accept any more material body, but in your spiritual body go back to home, back to Godhead. Of course, it is very difficult task to understand Kṛṣṇa, but it is due to our misunderstanding or uncleanliness of the consciousness. If the consciousness is cleansed, then you can very easily understand what is Kṛṣṇa. This cleanliness of the consciousness can be effected by chanting the transcendental vibration, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare/ Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare. It is open to all. It is not a secret thing. We are chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra very loudly. Everyone can hear it and chant it. If you regularly chant this Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra, then gradually your consciousness will be cleansed. The process of advancement in chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra is said in the Vedic literature, ceto-darpaṇa-mārjanam (CC Antya 20.12). The first installment of benefit by chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra is that your consciousness becomes cleansed. And as soon as your consciousness becomes cleansed, the tribulations or the miserable condition of material life becomes extinguished. The miserable condition of material life is compared to the blazing fire in the forest. As it is very difficult to extinguish the forest fire, similarly, the problems of material life cannot be extinguished simply by material benefits. As the blazing fire in the forest cannot be extinguished by the help of fire brigade or bucketful of water, similarly, by material adjustment, the problems of material miseries cannot be solved.