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This duty, this eternal occupational duty, is there in every living entity, the service spirit. But the service spirit is now misplaced on account of our conditioned stage. So when it is properly placed, service, that is our dharma

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"This duty, this eternal occupational duty, is there in every living entity, the service spirit. But the service spirit is now misplaced on account of our conditioned stage. So when it is properly placed, service, that is our dharma"

Lectures

Bhagavad-gita As It Is Lectures

You may become tomorrow Hindu or Muslim or Christian, but you cannot change your spirit of service. That is your dharma. So dharmaṁ hi sākṣād bhagavat-praṇītam. This duty, this eternal occupational duty, is there in every living entity, the service spirit. But the service spirit is now misplaced on account of our conditioned stage. So when it is properly placed, service, that is our dharma.
Lecture on BG 4.34-39 -- Los Angeles, January 12, 1969:

Madhudviṣa: Purport. "The path of spiritual realization is undoubtedly difficult. The Lord therefore advises us to approach a bona fide spiritual master in the line of disciplic succession from the Lord Himself. Nobody can be a bona fide spiritual master without following this principle of disciplic succession. The Lord is the original spiritual master, and the person in the disciplic succession can convey the message of the Lord as it is to his disciple. No one can be spiritually realized by manufacturing his own process, as is the fashion of the foolish pretenders. The Bhāgavatam says, dharmaṁ hi sākṣād bhagavat-praṇītam."

Prabhupāda: Yes. Dharma means religion. Actual translation of the word dharma is "religion." But actually "religion" is not the right translation of the word dharma. Dharma means your eternal occupation. That is called dharma, which you cannot avoid. Just like somebody is Christian. Next day he becomes a Hindu. Or somebody is Hindu; next day he becomes Christian. This is not dharma. This change of faith cannot be applied in dharma. Dharma cannot be changed.

Just like this candle. Candle has power, illuminating power. If you change this illuminating power of the candle, if you make it dark, then it is no more candle. And there are many examples. Just like sugar. Sugar is sweet. If you change the taste of the sugar into salty, then it is no more sugar. So dharma is like that. It cannot be changed. So dharmaṁ hi sākṣāt. What is that dharma? It cannot be changed.

Service. Either you become human being or animal or anything—bird, beast, or American, Indian, or this, that, whatever—if you are living being, then your dharma is service. You may become tomorrow Hindu or Muslim or Christian, but you cannot change your spirit of service. That is your dharma. So dharmaṁ hi sākṣād bhagavat-praṇītam. This duty, this eternal occupational duty, is there in every living entity, the service spirit. But the service spirit is now misplaced on account of our conditioned stage. So when it is properly placed, service, that is our dharma.

That dharma is directly from the Supreme Lord, bhagavat-praṇītam. It cannot be manufactured by any man or any demigod or any somebody else, no. It is eternal. And that is taught in Bhagavad-gītā, sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja: (BG 18.66) "My dear Arjuna, the most confidential knowledge I am giving you, that you give up all your occupational duties. Simply surrender unto Me." This surrender process is dharma, is your business, and nothing more, That's all. If you learn how to surrender to God, or Kṛṣṇa, then you actually, you are religious or you are in dharma. And if you practice so many things without surrendering to Kṛṣṇa, or God, then it is all useless labor. That's all. Dharmaṁ hi sākṣād bhagavat-praṇītam. Yes. Go on.

Madhudviṣa: "The path of religion is directly enunciated by the Lord. Therefore mental speculation or dry argument cannot help one progress in spiritual life. One has to approach a bona fide spiritual master to receive the knowledge. Such a teacher should be accepted in full surrender, and one should serve the spiritual master like a menial servant, without false prestige."

Prabhupāda: Yes. The brahmacārī means... These are indication. When a person... When a boy becomes brahmacārī, even if he is the son of very rich man, he should live with the spiritual master as a menial servant. These are the injunction. That, Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa, He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Apart from his Godheadship, He was a very rich man's son. Really He was a very great king's son, Vasudeva, but He was given under the protection of King Nanda, Nanda Mahārāja, His foster father. He was also very rich man, very... He was king... (break)

...brahmacārī. So how he can see? When... Even if he is grown up, he cannot see any other woman in other way. He thinks of "Every woman is mother." This is the training. Of course, that training is not possible at the present moment. The days have changed. But this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is so nice that even brahmacārī begins immediately, he is trained up. He is trained up very nicely. Go on.