It is said in the Bhagavad-gītā that even a little effort expended on the path of Kṛṣṇa consciousness can save one from the greatest danger. Hundreds of thousands of examples can be cited of people who have escaped the greatest dangers of life due to a slight advancement in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. We therefore request everyone to take advantage of this great transcendental literary work. One will find that by reading one page after another, an immense treasure of knowledge in art, science, literature, philosophy and religion will be revealed, and ultimately, by reading this one book, Kṛṣṇa, love of Godhead will fructify.
Religion and philosophy
- 1 Bhagavad-gita As It Is
- 2 Other Books by Srila Prabhupada
- 3 Lectures
- 4 Conversations and Morning Walks
- 5 Correspondence
Bhagavad-gita As It Is
BG Chapters 1 - 6
In the Second Chapter, verse 39, the Lord explained two kinds of procedures—namely sāṅkhya-yoga and karma-yoga, or buddhi-yoga. In this verse, the Lord explains the same more clearly. Sāṅkhya-yoga, or the analytical study of the nature of spirit and matter, is the subject matter for persons who are inclined to speculate and understand things by experimental knowledge and philosophy. The other class of men work in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, as it is explained in the 61st verse of the Second Chapter. The Lord has explained, also in the 39th verse, that by working by the principles of buddhi-yoga, or Kṛṣṇa consciousness, one can be relieved from the bonds of action; and, furthermore, there is no flaw in the process. The same principle is more clearly explained in the 61st verse—that this buddhi-yoga is to depend entirely on the Supreme (or more specifically, on Kṛṣṇa), and in this way all the senses can be brought under control very easily. Therefore, both the yogas are interdependent, as religion and philosophy. Religion without philosophy is sentiment, or sometimes fanaticism, while philosophy without religion is mental speculation. The ultimate goal is Kṛṣṇa, because the philosophers who are also sincerely searching after the Absolute Truth come in the end to Kṛṣṇa consciousness.
Other Books by Srila Prabhupada
Krsna, The Supreme Personality of Godhead
Therefore any religion without scientific understanding through philosophy, it is simply sentiment. It is not religion. And philosophy without religious understanding is mental speculation. That is also useless. Philosophy which does not search ultimately what is truth, what is God, that philosophy is mental speculation. And the knowledge of God without philosophy is simply sentiment. They should be combined. To understand God, our relationship with God, our duty, everything should be understood, scientifically. Bhagavat-tattva-vijñānam. Therefore this word has been used, vijñānam. Viśeṣa-jñānam. Jñānam, ordinary knowledge, and vi, when the this word is added, vi, meaning viśeṣatā, particularly, for practical application... This vijñānam.
Our question by Nārada Muni to Vyāsadeva, asking that "My dear Vyāsadeva, the author of all Vedic literature, you are such a learned scholar. You have produced such vastly, scholarly, and philosophical theses, books, and still you are not happy. So did you try to find out what is the cause?" The similar position is of the present world. There is so much advancement of scientific research, result, economic. Of course, in India there may be poverty-stricken, but in your country, you have got ample, everything ample. But still, a section is confused and frustrated. Why? The same position as Vyāsadeva, who was not satisfied even after producing so many variety of literatures in material science and philosophy and religion and... Everything was complete. So therefore Nārada Muni is asking, "My dear Vyāsadeva, you are great personality, but do you think as long as one is situated in the bodily plane or in the mental plane, does he derive any pleasure?" This is the question.
The consciousness is there in you, but it is now dirty consciousness, and what you have to do now is to cleanse it from all dirty things and make it clear Kṛṣṇa consciousness in pleasant method by chanting the glorified holy name of God: Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare/ Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare. These performances we can practice anywhere. It does not matter either in a temple, or in a street, or in a park, or at home. But to assemble together and sit together, we require a place for congregation; therefore a temple of the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is required to be established in various centers of the world, irrespective of the particular countries, culture, philosophy, and religion. Kṛṣṇa consciousness is so universal and perfect that it can appeal to everyone, irrespective of his position; therefore I fervently appeal to you, all present in this meeting, to extend your cooperation for successful execution of this great movement.
Hayagrīva: He says in the realm of philosophy and religion, certainty is impossible. He says, "The moment philosophy supposes it can find a final and comprehensive solution, it ceases to be inquiry and becomes either apologetics or propaganda. Any philosophy that in its quest for certainty ignores the reality of the uncertain in the ongoing processes of nature denies the conditions out of which it arises."
Prabhupāda: There is uncertain when you do not accept the reality. The reality is God, and God is explaining how things are going on, but you take it as mythology. Then how you will know?
Hayagrīva: He looked on the Indian philosophy and religion as basically a philosophy of the denial of the will, and he gives several examples of religious..., of suicide as a religious act. He says especially when it...
Prabhupāda: That is, that is Māyāvāda. That is not... He did not study Indian philosophy and religion perfectly well. He simply has taken some portion of the Māyāvāda philosophy or Buddha philosophy, but he did not know about Vaiṣṇava philosophy.
Hayagrīva: And in this book he defines religion. He says, "Religion leans on metaphysics for the justification of its conviction of the reality of its object, God. Philosophy leans on religion to justify it, and calling the possessor of Deity by the religious name of 'God.' The two methods of approach, that is philosophy and religion, are therefore complementary."
Prabhupāda: Hmm. That's right. Religion, when it is combined with philosophy, that makes sense, and religion without philosophy is sentiment. It has no practical value.
Hayagrīva: For Alexander, religion is like what...
Prabhupāda: We should say in this connection that Bhagavad-gītā is religion and philosophy combined together.
Hayagrīva: For Ale...
Prabhupāda: The religion is God worship, and everything explained there, just like immortality of the soul, that is philosophy. So it is combination of religion and philosophy that makes sense.
Conversations and Morning Walks
1971 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: National means a man born in that land. Is it not? But they do not take the animals as national. Why they have no right to become national? That is imperfect knowledge. There is no God consciousness. Therefore they think only the man born in this land is national, not others.
Interviewer: Yes. That is not necessarily based on the religious principles, of course, what you are talking about.
Prabhupāda: No, that is a philosophical principle. Religion without philosophy is sentiment.
Interviewer: Don't you think there are very good reasons for the existence of these rules and regulations in this respect?
Prabhupāda: Yes. Rules and regulations must be established on philosophy. Otherwise it is sentiment, defective. Religion without philosophy is sentiment, and philosophy without religion is mental speculation. They should be combined, philosophy and religion. Then it will be perfect.
National means a man born in that land. Is it not? But they do not take the animals as national. Why they have no right to become national? That is imperfect of knowledge. There is no God consciousness; therefore they think only the man born in this land is national, not others.
Interviewer: That is not necessarily based on religious principles, of course.
Prabhupāda: That is philosophical principle.
Prabhupāda: And religion without philosophy is sentiment.
Interviewer: Don't you think there are very good reasons for the existence of these rules and regulations in this respect?
Prabhupāda: Yes. The rules and regulations must be established on philosophy. Otherwise, it is sentiment, defective. Religion without philosophy is sentiment. And philosophy without religion is mental speculation. They should be combined, philosophy and religion. Then it will be perfect.
1974 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: So it is not an artificial thing. Either in Russia or any place, any human being, he has got dormant love for God. It has to be awakened by processes. Therefore I began: That process which quickly awakens that God consciousness and engages him in the service of the Lord, that is first-class religious system. Paro dharmaḥ. Paraḥ means first-class. But a simply sentiment will not help. Therefore religion must be based on philosophy, and my spiritual master used to say this, that "Philosophy without religion is mental speculation, and religion without philosophy is sentimental." They should be combined. Philosophy and religion must be... Or religion must be based on philosophy. Then it is perfect. We cannot separate these two things. Simple philosophical speculation will not help, and simple sentiments, rituals, formalities, will not also. They should be combined. So this combination is here in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam and Bhagavad-gītā.
Pṛthu Putra: He says the religions that come from India are infinitely richer than the religion we know in the West. And we cannot see only one aspect. He says there is so many faces in Indian religions.
Prabhupāda: Yes. In... The idea of philosophy and religion, that is originated from India. There is no doubt about it. And that original idea of philosophy is practically demonstrated by Kṛṣṇa. The ideal original ideal of religion and philosophy is preached by Kṛṣṇa. And all the ācāryas followed that.
1976 Conversations and Morning Walks
Guest: And I'd be interested to hear from you as to what you would believe might be done to encourage a greater acceptance of your areas of philosophy and religion.
Prabhupāda: Yes. Our philosophy is to purify, ceto-darpaṇa-mārjanam (CC Antya 20.12). Our philosophy is to purify the core of the heart from all dirty things. This is basic principle of our philosophy, ceto-darpaṇa-mārjanam, cleansing the core of the heart. So just this morning several boys and girls became initiated. So our first promise is, before the Deity, before the fire, before the Vaiṣṇavas, before the spiritual master, that from this day no more illicit sex, no more intoxication, no more meat-eating, no more gambling. This is the first initiation. Then chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra. Very simple method. But one cannot practice these things without association of devotees. Nobody can do it outside. But here they are able; immediately they give up. All these boys, they were addicted to all these habits, but since they have come to the association, immediately they have given up, instantly. So you can bring any number of young men, and we shall be glad to make him free from all these things, practically engage him. It is open. If you like, you can take advantage.
Jagadīśa: Kṛṣṇa Book is taken from 10th Canto of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, summary study.
Prabhupāda: Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, up to date since 1970, we have sold 1.5 million.
Devotee: And every day we sell more.
Prabhupāda: Ha, yes. All these Kṛṣṇa consciousness books, we are selling daily five to six lakhs of rupees. All over the world. I have estimate. That religious book (Hindi). It is full of religion and philosophy, still they are selling.
1947 to 1965 Correspondence
But I know that you never underwent such transcendental training except some severe penances which you invented for your purpose as you have invented so many things in the course of experimenting with the relative truths. You might have easily avoided them if you had approached the Guru as abovementioned. But your sincere efforts to attain some Godly qualities by austerities etc surely have raised you to some higher position which you can better utilize for the purpose of the Absolute Truth. If you, however, remain satisfied with such temporary position only and do not try to know the Absolute Truth, then surely you are to fall down from the artificially exalted position under the laws of Nature. But if you really want to approach the Absolute Truth and want to do some real good to the people in general all over the world, which shall include your ideas of unity, peace and non-violence, then you must give up the rotten politics immediately and rise up for the preaching work of the philosophy and religion of "Bhagavad-gita" without offering unnecessary and dogmatic interpretations on them. I had occasionally discussed this subject in my paper "Back to Godhead" and a leaf from the same is enclosed herewith for your reference.
The highest service that can be rendered to the mankind is, therefore, to preach the philosophy and religion of Bhagavad-gita for all the times, all the places and all the people.
Please accept my greetings. It is understood that you have come back from your American & European Tour on the mission of philosophy and religion.
At present I am at Vrindaban. Last time (Feb. 9th 1963) when I met your Excellency to present my Srimad-Bhagavatam, you promised to read it to see what is there in it.
As Srimad-Bhagavatam is combination of philosophy and religion it is a great need of the day. It is a fact that at the present moment only philosophy and religion can bring about a __ of humanity. I think you must have ___ the required ideal.
The Governor Of U.P., the Congress President others all have sent their valued comments on the book. I am also expecting your opinion on the publication. This will help me very much.
There are so many men over 30. Are they brainwashed? It may be a minority in your country, but in other places it is the majority. The diamond seller caters to a minority. Why are they allowed to sell. Always when there is something valuable only a minority will be able to purchase. Our books are not commercial, they are religion and philosophy.