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There is a story that a mouse approached a saintly person

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Expressions researched:
"Again become a mouse" |"There is a story that a mouse approached a saintly person" |"again become mouse" |"become a mouse" |"become mouse" |"punar musaka bhava" |"punar musiko bhava"

Srimad-Bhagavatam

SB Canto 10.1 to 10.13

There is an instructive story called punar mūṣiko bhava, "Again Become a Mouse." A mouse was very much harassed by a cat, and therefore the mouse approached a saintly person to request to become a cat.
SB 10.10.13, Purport:

Atheistic fools and rascals who are very much proud of wealth fail to see things as they are. Therefore, returning them to poverty is the proper ointment for their eyes so they may see things as they are. At least a poverty-stricken man can realize how painful poverty is, and therefore he will not want others to be in a painful condition like his own."

Even today, if a man who was formerly poverty-stricken gets money, he is inclined to utilize his money to perform many philanthropic activities, like opening schools for uneducated men and hospitals for the diseased. In this connection there is an instructive story called punar mūṣiko bhava, "Again Become a Mouse." A mouse was very much harassed by a cat, and therefore the mouse approached a saintly person to request to become a cat. When the mouse became a cat, he was harassed by a dog, and then when he became a dog, he was harassed by a tiger. But when he became a tiger, he stared at the saintly person, and when the saintly person asked him, "What do you want?" the tiger said, "I want to eat you." Then the saintly person cursed him, saying, "May you again become a mouse." A similar thing is going on all over the universe. One is going up and down, sometimes becoming a mouse, sometimes a tiger, and so on. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu said:

brahmāṇḍa bhramite kona bhāgyavān jīva
guru-kṛṣṇa-prasāde pāya bhakti-latā-bīja
(CC Madhya 19.151)

The living entities are promoted and degraded by the laws of nature, but if one is very, very fortunate, by association with saintly persons he gets the seed of devotional service, and his life becomes successful. Nārada Muni wanted to bring Nalakūvara and Maṇigrīva to the platform of devotional service through poverty, and thus he cursed them. Such is the mercy of a Vaiṣṇava. Unless one is brought to the Vaiṣṇava platform, one cannot be a good man. Harāv abhaktasya kuto mahad-guṇāḥ (SB 5.18.12). An avaiṣṇava never becomes a good man, however severely he is punished.

Lectures

Srimad-Bhagavatam Lectures

We are selling book. But if we think that the selling book may be diverted into selling jewelry, that is not very good idea. That is not very good idea. Then we become again jeweler. Punar mūṣika bhava. Again become mouse. We should be very much careful. Our Kṛṣṇa consciousness cannot be diverted. Then you are gone to hell.

Lecture on SB 1.8.25 -- Los Angeles, April 17, 1973:

If you see always Kṛṣṇa, that is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Kṛṣṇa consciousness means always thinking of Kṛṣṇa. Your consciousness should be absorbed in Kṛṣṇa thought.

Therefore we give different varieties of engagement, Kṛṣṇa consciousness. We should not divert our energy. Now when we are selling book, that is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. We are selling book. But if we think that the selling book may be diverted into selling jewelry, that is not very good idea. That is not very good idea. Then we become again jeweler. Punar mūṣika bhava. Again become mouse. We should be very much careful. Our Kṛṣṇa consciousness cannot be diverted. Then you are gone to hell. Even there is danger, even there is suffering in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, we should tolerate. That is the instruction of... We should welcome such danger. And pray to Kṛṣṇa. What is that prayer? Tat te 'nukampāṁ su-samīkṣamāṇaḥ (SB 10.14.8). "My dear Lord, it is Your great mercy that I am put into this dangerous position." That is the viewpoint of devotee. He doesn't take danger as danger. He takes: "It is Kṛṣṇa's mercy." What kind of mercy? Now bhuñjāna evātma-kṛtaṁ vipākam. "Due to my past activities, I was to suffer so much. But You are mitigating that suffering, giving me little suffering."

Just like a token punishment.

You know the story, punar mūṣiko bhava? Anyone knows? Punar mūṣiko bhava means "Again you become a mouse."

Lecture on SB 1.15.20 -- Los Angeles, November 30, 1973:

You know the story, punar mūṣiko bhava? Anyone knows? Punar mūṣiko bhava means "Again you become a mouse." (laughter) A mouse came to a saintly person: "Sir, I am very much troubled." "What is that?" People generally go to saintly persons for some material profit. That is the nature, animalistic nature. Why you should go to a saintly person for some material benefit? No. You go there to learn what is God. That is real business. Anyway, saintly persons sometimes receive. "So what do you want?" Just like Lord Śiva, his devotees are all like that mouse, want something. "Sir, this cat troubles me very much." "So what you want?" "Let me become a cat." "All right, you become a cat." So he became a cat. Then after few days, he came back. "Sir, still I am in trouble." "What is that?" "The dogs, (laughter) they trouble us very much." "So what you want?" "Now I want to become a dog." "All right, you become." Then after few days... One after..., there is nature's arrangement. One is weak, one is strong. That is nature's arrangement. So after all, he wanted to become a tiger. So by the grace of the saintly person, he became a tiger. And when he became a tiger, he was staring on the saintly person like, oh. (Prabhupāda makes a face-devotees laugh) So the saintly person asked him, "You want to eat me?" "Yes." "Oh, then you may again become a mouse. (laughter) If by my grace, by my favor, you have become tiger, so I will again condemn you to become a mouse."

So you American people, you have become tiger now, Nixon tiger. But if you don't behave obligely, if you don't feel obliged, if the tiger feels obliged that "By the grace of the saintly person, I have come to the stage of becoming a tiger, I must be very much obliged to him..." But instead of becoming obliged, if you want to eat, then again become a mouse. If the saintly person has got the power to make you from mouse to tiger, then he can convert you again from tiger to mouse. You must always remember this. So by the grace of God, Kṛṣṇa, you have become so powerful nation, rich, beautiful, educated. By grace of Kṛṣṇa you have become, but if you forget Kṛṣṇa, then you are again going to be mouse. Remember that. Nobody will care for you. Just like Englishmen. Englishmen, they established the British Empire, great, powerful, most powerful nation in the world. Now they are not so. Because they misused their power. So you get power, opulence, by the grace of Lord, Kṛṣṇa. And if you misuse it, then you become again... That is happening. That is the nature's law. Nature's law.

There is a story that a mouse approached a saintly person. "Sir, I have come to you for some favor." "What is that?" "Now, I am mouse. The cats gives me much trouble. I cannot live peacefully on account of the cats." So the saintly person asked, "What do you want to become?" "I want to become a cat." "All right, you become a cat.

Lecture on SB 7.12.2 -- Bombay, April 13, 1976:

There is a story that a mouse approached a saintly person. "Sir, I have come to you for some favor." "What is that?" "Now, I am mouse. The cats gives me much trouble. I cannot live peacefully on account of the cats." So the saintly person asked, "What do you want to become?" "I want to become a cat." "All right, you become a cat." Then after some time he again came: "Sir, I am still bothered." "Why?" "The dogs, they bother me." "Then what do you want?" "Now, let me become a dog." "All right, you become a dog." Then again after some time he came back, that "Still they bother me, sir." "What do you want?" In this way, after, one after, he, at last he begged the saintly person to become a tiger. So the saintly person, "All right, you become a tiger." Then, when he became tiger, he began to stare his eyes on the saintly person. The saintly person, "What do you mean by this?" "I shall eat you." "Oh, you shall eat me? All right. Punar mūṣiko bhava: Again you become a mouse. I have made you tiger, and you want to eat me. So you become again mouse."

So our civilization is like that, that in the gradual process of evolution we have come to the platform of human being. This human being is meant for understanding God, but they are forgetting God. Therefore the next stage is punar mūṣiko bhava, "Again become monkey." That is waiting us. The nature's law is like that, that from monkey we have become human being, and in the human being we are dancing like monkey. So nature will say, "All right, again you become monkey." You cannot check that. That is not possible. Daivī hy eṣā guṇa-mayī mama māyā duratyayā (BG 7.14). This nature's process is going on, but we are so advanced scientist that we do not know how nature is working. Automatically working. Nature's way of working is automatic. Just like you have got so many automatic machine, similarly, this is, this machine is made by the Supreme Lord. It is perfect machine, one after another, one after another. So just like if you infect some disease, nature's way, you will develop that disease. That is the way. Kāraṇaṁ guṇa saṅgo 'sya sad-asad janma-yoniṣu (BG 13.22). This is stated. Now we have got this nice human form of body, but if we associate with the low-grade qualities of this material world—means tamo-guṇa—then again we are going to become animal automatically. They do not know it. They are thinking, "I am enjoying life by eating meat and drinking wine and having illicit sex and gambling. It is very joyful life." But he does not know that he is associating with tamo-guṇa, and he is going to be an animal, cats and dogs and monkey. This is a fact.

Therefore we should be very, very careful. This Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is simply a very scientific movement that will help the human society not to be degraded again, to be elevated.

Festival Lectures

There is a story. There is a very nice story. One rat, mouse, he came to a saintly person. Everyone comes to saintly person for some blessing, you see. Real blessing they don't want. Some material blessing. Real blessing, Kṛṣṇa, they don't want.

Nrsimha-caturdasi Lord Nrsimhadeva's Appearance Day -- Srimad-Bhagavatam 7.5.22-34 -- Los Angeles, May 27, 1972:

Because we cannot control our senses, we are driving, we are being pushed towards the darkest region of material existence, very hard to leave. Darkest region means that we are going to become animals next life. Because this is animalistic civilization. Nature gave us the opportunity to realize God, but God-realization is meant for human being. The human being, if he does not realize God, he's simply engaged in animalistic way of life—eating, sleeping, mating—then nature will call, "All right, sir, again become animal." Punar mūṣiko bhava: "Again become a mouse." You know this story? Punar mūṣiko bhava. There is a story. There is a very nice story. One rat, mouse, he came to a saintly person. Everyone comes to saintly person for some blessing, you see. Real blessing they don't want. Some material blessing. Real blessing, Kṛṣṇa, they don't want. If you give him some blessing that "You become very rich man and..." These... they'll be very much pleased. are all very well, this. So this mouse also came and begged the saintly person, "Sir, I am in difficulty. If you give me some blessing?"

"What is that?"

"The cat chases after me always. I'm very unhappy."

"So what do you want?"

"Now, if you make me a cat, then I can get relief from this."

"All right, you become cat." So he became cat.

So after few days, again he comes. "Sir, again I am in trouble."

"What is that?"

"The dog is chasing me." (laughter) Don't laugh, hear seriously. "Dog is chasing me."

"All right, then, what do you want?"

"Now, make me a tiger."

"All right, you become a tiger."

So when he became a tiger he was staring on the saintly person like this.

So he asked, "Why you are staring upon me? You want to eat me?"

"Yes."

So he again curses, punar mūṣiko bhava: "Again you become mouse. Again you become mouse."

So that is our position. We are advanced in civilization. Now we want to kill God. So we are again going to be uncivilized, to remain in the forest and to remain naked. Actually, they are practicing that: nature's life. So again they are going to be aborigines. And that is being practiced. They are going to the forest, they remain naked. So actually, punar mūṣiko bhava: "Again become mouse." Civilized human being means God conscious, happy life, no trouble, no enviousness, everything happy, no hard labor. Why hard labor? Everything is there. You just employ your little intelligence, you get sufficient food by grains, by fruits, by flowers, milk. There is no difficulty if we remain in our own way. So that is the difficulty, that we do not know that our ultimate goal of life is God-realization.

Conversations and Morning Walks

1970 Conversations and Morning Walks

The story is a mouse came to a saintly person: "Sir, I am in trouble. If you kindly release me?" "What is that trouble?" "A cat, they are after me. I am always at risk of life." "So what do you want?" "You also make me a cat." "All right. You become a cat."
Room Conversation -- December 13, 1970, Indore:

Prabhupāda: The story is a mouse came to a saintly person: "Sir, I am in trouble. If you kindly release me?" "What is that trouble?" "A cat, they are after me. I am always at risk of life." "So what do you want?" "You also make me a cat." "All right. You become a cat." Then again he came. "Sir, again the complaint is here." "What is that?" "Dogs are chasing me." "Then what do you want?" "I want to become a dog." "All right. You become a dog." In this way he came up to the tiger by the benediction of the... And when he became a tiger, he was... (snarling sound-laughter) Just like our Brahmānanda Prabhu. "All right. Again become mouse." You see? So these civilization is like that. They became tiger, and they are so much badly trained up that they have to become again a mouse. That is the way. That is the way of nature. If you don't improve yourself in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, then you again become stool worms. The human form of life is an opportunity to come out of the cycle of birth and death, but if one does not take—these are the statements in Padma Purāṇa—then he loses the chance. They do not know what is life, how life is rotating, talking nonsense, "I am God. Why Kṛṣṇa should be God? This is written by man." How much low-graded people have become. They are completely under the laws of nature. Daivī hy eṣā guṇamayī mama māyā duratyayā (BG 7.14), stringent laws of nature, and still, they are claiming, "I am God. I am this. I am that. I am free. I am..." And they do not mind, even they are degraded to the position of the worm of stool. But there is possibility. What is this worm of stool? It is also living entity. It is not a different thing. Paṇḍitāḥ sama-darśinaḥ (BG 5.18). One who knows, he knows that the worm of stool and Brahmā are the same living entity. Simply under different reaction of karma one has become Brahmā and another has become the stool worm.

1975 Conversations and Morning Walks

The mouse was given the chance to elevate gradually to a tiger, and when he became tiger, he wanted to devour the saintly person.
Morning Walk -- April 5, 1975, Mayapur:

Prabhupāda: Your main business is to become Kṛṣṇa conscious. If you forget that—you remain cats and dogs—then you'll become again cats and dogs. Punar muṣiko bhava: "Again become a mouse." The mouse was given the chance to elevate gradually to a tiger, and when he became tiger, he wanted to devour the saintly person. And he said, "All right, again you become mouse." That is also... You are given the chance of self-realization. If you do not do it, then again become cats and dogs, maintain your family.

1976 Conversations and Morning Walks

So the jñānīs, they have no shelter. Yes. They may go very high in the sky, but because they have no shelter they come back again. Punar muṣaka bhava, again become a mouse.
Room Conversation with Professor Francois Chenique -- August 5, 1976, New Mayapur (French farm):

Prabhupāda: Just like so many sannyāsīs in India, they are very learned, they have come to the platform of Brahman realization, but after some time they come to the material field for political work, for social work. They give up this world, brahma satyaṁ jagan mithyā. If jagat is mithyā, is false, why does he come for social work? Just like these people going to the moon planet, but because they do not get any shelter, they take some sand and come back again. So what is the use of going there and spending so much money and come back with little sand, and satisfied, "Now we have studied"? Because they have no shelter. So the jñānīs, they have no shelter. Yes. They may go very high in the sky, but because they have no shelter they come back again. Punar muṣaka bhava, again become a mouse. So that is not jñānī, that is ajñānī. Jñānī is described here, mad-bhaktiṁ labhate parām (BG 18.54). Brahma-bhūta (SB 4.30.20) is jñānī, ahaṁ brahmāsmi. Brahma-bhūtaḥ prasannātmā, "I have nothing to do with material world." Brahma-bhūtaḥ prasannātmā na śocati na kāṅkṣati (BG 18.54), there is no lamentation, there is no hankering. When he has attained that stage, brahma-bhūta stage, reality, then he is entrance in the bhakti. Otherwise a neophyte.

Punar muṣaka bhava, you know the whole story? A muṣaka, a mouse, was made a tiger, and the tiger wanted to eat the saintly person who made him.
Room Conversation -- October 26, 1976, Vrndavana:

Devotee: He asks how many pages. Yogānanda asks how many... Because they say that you sent a newsletter to all the GBCs. He asks how many pages was the newsletter. And I said just two lines.

Prabhupāda: Newspaper?

Hari-śauri: Newsletter to the GBC.

Prabhupāda: What is that newsletter?

Hari-śauri: You said, "Please be informed that Nitāi has become a venomous serpent."

Prabhupāda: So this has been sent? (laughs)

Hari-śauri: Yes, to the GBC.

Devotee: Yogānanda asked how many pages, when he heard about the newsletter. He thought that you spoke so long about that. And I just said, "Just two lines." But they never asked me what the letter said.

Prabhupāda: Yes, two lines is sufficient.

Dhanañjaya: Punar muṣaka bhava. Punar muṣaka bhava.

Prabhupāda: Yes. This is exactly the same case. Punar muṣaka bhava, you know the whole story? A muṣaka, a mouse, was made a tiger, and the tiger wanted to eat the saintly person who made him. First of all he was mouse. So he came to the saintly person. "Sir, I am troubled. Give me some benediction." "What do you want?" "Now, the cat always chases." "All right, you become cat so that you'll not be attacked." Then after some time he came. "I am being chased by the dog." "All right, you become a dog." From cat to dog, from mouse to... Then again he came. "Still, they are chasing me. Fox." And then in this way, and ultimately he made a tiger. And after becoming a tiger, he began to look, staring on the... "What do you mean by this?" "I shall eat you." "Oh? You become again a mouse." (laughter) Again he became mouse. That's all.

Hari-śauri: The perfect example.

Devotee: Now he looks like dirty. You know, like brown. The dhotī's not white. It's like brownish.

Prabhupāda: He harassed. "He has not increased my..." Hearing and hearing, he wants to go. So why not, if he found some real disciplic succession, some bābājī, why he did not remain there? He is criticizing that our is not in the proper succession. So why he did not remain where he found the proper succession? Why he's sometimes in Vṛndāvana, sometimes Delhi, sometimes here. Why he is loitering? Crazy. Unfortunate. Unnecessarily picking out some trouble.

Hari-śauri: Faultfinding.

Prabhupāda: The bābājīs, they are against anything preaching. They are very, very much against preaching. So I am preaching. Bābājīs, the Māyāvādī sannyāsīs, and all of them, their idea is that I am ruining this bhajana and Hindu dharma. This is the propaganda. What I am writing, they are all wrong. And they are making... And they try to poison my disciples as far as possible so that the whole institution may be poisoned and break. This is their propaganda.

Hari-śauri: That was one thing that Nitāi put in his letter, that the teachings of ISKCON are completely opposite or contradictory to what is actually in the śāstra.

Prabhupāda: Now he has become tiger. He wants to kill that philosophy. When he did not know anything he came to us. Now he has become learned, he wants to criticize. The same philosophy. "You have made me tiger, now I can see you are my eatable." (laughs) He could not find out any other eatable. "I shall eat you." The rascal. What can be done?

1977 Conversations and Morning Walks

"Again become a mouse." That's all. "I made you tiger. Now you want to eat me? All right, you become again a mouse."
Srila Prabhupada Vigil -- May 27, 1977, Vrndavana:

Prabhupāda: This Nitāi, as soon as he mixed with some pseudo devotee, fell down. Rascal. He's searching after guru. And where is now?

Rāmeśvara: In America.

Prabhupāda: What does he do?

Rāmeśvara: Some karmī job to get money.

Prabhupāda: Just see. (laughs) And he's asking my blessings for a guru. He's a fanatic. (break) ...know that story, punar muṣako bhava. (laughter)

Jayatīrtha: Yes. That's a very suitable story for this case.

Prabhupāda: "Again become a mouse." That's all. "I made you tiger. Now you want to eat me? All right, you become again a mouse." (break) That is called dṛḍha-vrata, firm determination. Hm. Go on. (break) Doesn't create any... That is bhakti life. Yāre dekha tāre kaha kṛṣṇa-upadeśa (CC Madhya 7.128). Bas. So where is the difficulty? The things are already there. I have to repeat it only. Why shall I create, make hodgepodge everything? But that they do not know. Bhaktivedanta has no difficulty. The things are already there. Simply you have to present them as it is. That's all. You become Vaiṣṇava. Where is the difficulty? And as soon as you change, become over-intelligent, spoiled, everything spoiled. That is the... (recording grows very faint, then inaudible) (break) What arrangement is...? What arrangement is made? (break) And if they do not repeat, they fell down(?). You have to bring. You cannot satisfy everyone. That is not possible. Here Nārada Muni is blaming Vyāsadeva, "You have not repeated." And here is a scholar, and he has repeated. The actual position is repetition. Kīrtanīyaḥ sadā hariḥ (CC Adi 17.31). That is the position. So we shall go on doing that.

Sahadeva +, Visnu Murti +  and MadhuGopaldas +
April 19, 0009 JL +
September 6, 0011 JL +
BG: 0 +, SB: 1 +, CC: 0 +, OB: 0 +, Lec: 4 +, Conv: 5 +  and Let: 0 +