Visvamitra (Lectures, Conv. and Letters)

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Bhagavad-gita As It Is Lectures

Lecture on BG 2.15 -- London, August 21, 1973:

So the whole scheme is Vedic scheme, not otherwise: how to become immortal. You find in Bhagavad-gītā, yad gatvā na nivartante tad dhāma paramaṁ mama (BG 15.6). In many places, the śāstra only aims at. In another place, in Bhāratī-kāvya (Bhakti-kāvya) (?), when Viśvāmitra Muni came to see Mahārāja Daśaratha to ask his son, Rāmacandra and Lakṣmaṇa, to take them, they were boys at that time, and there was a demon disturbing in the forest. So Viśvāmitra... (aside:) Not back side ... Viśvāmitra Muni came to Mahārāja Daśaratha for help. Viśvāmitra Muni could kill that demon immediately, but that is not the business of the brāhmaṇa. Killing business is for the kṣatriya. Just see how... He was quite powerful. He could kill that demon simply by saying that "You die." He was so powerful, Viśvāmitra Muni. But still, he came to the king for help.

So when Viśvāmitra Muni came to Mahārāja Daśaratha, as we ask, "How are you?" so Daśaratha, Mahārāja Daśaratha inquired from Viśvāmitra Muni, aihistam yad punar janmajaya: (?)"My dear sir, if there is anything disturbance in your occupation? Because you are trying to conquer over death." All the great ṛṣis and saintly persons, all spiritual realization means to conquer over death. So this was the question. ihistam yad tam punar janmajaya.(?) Punar janma, you are trying to own over repetition of birth. The modern civilization, they do not know that it is possible. It is possible to become immortal, to have eternal blissful life of knowledge. That is called immortality. Sac-cid-ānanda. Sat means eternity and cit means knowledge and ānanda means pleasure, bliss. We are part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is sac-cid-ānanda vigraha (Bs. 5.1). His transcendental body is eternal, blissful and complete knowledge, His body. Therefore He's speaking Bhagavad-gītā. If He's an ordinary man, what is the use of hearing Him? Ordinary man will commit mistake, will cheat, will be illusioned. His senses are imperfect; how he can give complete knowledge? That is not possible. Therefore we are not concerned to hear any rascal. We want to hear Kṛṣṇa.

Lecture on BG 2.36-37 -- London, September 4, 1973:

According to the Vedic culture, the kṣatriyas... Not the brāhmaṇas. The brāhmaṇas are not encouraged to fight or kill. No. They should remain always nonviolent. Even there is required violence, a brāhmaṇa will not kill personally. He will bring the matter to the kṣatriya, royal order. Just like Viśvāmitra. Viśvāmitra was being disturbed by some demons in the forest. They used to live in the forest. So Viśvāmitra was able to kill such demon, many demons, by his will. But he did not do so. He went to Mahārāja Daśaratha, father of Lord Rāmacandra, to request him that "Give your sons Rāma and Lakṣmaṇa. I will take them with me. They will kill that demon." The killing is there, but the brāhmaṇa is not going to kill personally. Or the vaiśya is not meant for killing, neither the śūdras. Only the kṣatriyas. The kṣatriyas should be so trained up.

Lecture on BG 2.58-59 -- New York, April 27, 1966:

So here it is said, rasa-varjaṁ raso 'py asya paraṁ dṛṣṭvā nivartate (BG 9.59). One who is forcibly refrained from material enjoyment, oh, that sort of forcibly material enjoyment cannot last. Cannot last. There are many examples. There was a great muni, great sage, whose name was Viśvāmitra Muni, Viśvāmitra. He was formerly a very powerful king. Now, in his later life he gave up everything and he wanted to be a transcendentalist and great meditator, great meditator in the yoga principle of life. He was a yogi, great yogi. Now, this Viśvāmitra was performing meditation in the forest very supremely. So the... Now, Indra, the King of heaven, he became frightened: "So, this man is performing so much penance. So he might come. He might ask from God and claim my seat. So just wake him, wake him. Just detach him from this purpose." So he had many beautiful women at his control, one of whose name was Menakā. So Menakā was ordered that "You go there and try to induce him to have your association." Because in this world our real bondage is this... Either for man or woman, this is the real bondage, the sex life. So the Menakā was sent to Viśvāmitra, and Viśvāmitra was meditating, but his eyes were closed. So that woman made some sound of his (her) bangles, and Viśvāmitra thought, "Oh, in front me, a very nice beautiful woman, very young." Now, that woman was sent for that purpose, so he became implicated in that woman, and a girl was born out of that combination. That girl's name is Śakuntalā. Perhaps... That's a famous name. There is a book of Śakuntalā. That is the daughter of that combination. Now, here is the example, that he was a great meditator, a great yogi. But the inner implications of enjoying sex life or material enjoyment, that did not go. That was by force. By force it was submerged. That sort of forcing, forcing our senses not to act, that will not be suitable. We have to see something more beautiful than this material life. Then we can be refrained, acting material; otherwise not. Otherwise it is not possible.

Lecture on BG 2.58-59 -- New York, April 27, 1966:

So spiritual life, or transcendental life, does not mean that we are free from activity. Simply artificially, if we sit down, "Oh, no more I shall do anything material. I shall simply meditate," oh, what meditation you will do? Your meditation will be in a moment broken just like even Viśvāmitra Muni, he could not continue his meditation. We have to always, cent percent, be engaged in spiritual activities. That should be the program of our life. Rather, in spiritual life you will hardly find any time to get out of it. You have got so much engagement. Rasa-varjam. And that engagement can only be possible when you find some transcendental pleasure in it.

Lecture on BG 2.59-69 -- New York, April 29, 1966:

Last day I cited one example that a great yogi just like Viśvāmitra, he practiced yoga and he rose to the highest platform, but still, he failed to control his senses. He came in contact with Menakā, a society woman of the heaven, and Śakuntalā was born. So here Bhagavad-gītā says that viṣayā vinivartante nirāhārasya dehinaḥ. There are some rules and regulation for drying up our sensual activities, artificially drying up. Just like "You are not to eat more than once. You are not to do this. You are not to do this." So many negative points. Just like a diseased fellow. A diseased fellow is advised by the physician to refrain from so many things. Similarly, there are rules and regulation for controlling the mind, for restraining the senses. There are so many rules and regulation, but still, those regulations, those restrictive regulation, may also fail. There are so many instances. But here the process which is recommended in the Bhagavad-gītā, dovetailing your consciousness with the supreme consciousness, that is the highest.

Lecture on BG 2.59-69 -- New York, April 29, 1966:

Our mind is so strong and so uncontrolled that even though we artificially try to control our senses, still, sometimes, at a certain period, we fail. Just like Viśvāmitra Muni failed. Yatato hy api kaunteya puruṣasya vipaścitaḥ. Vipaścitaḥ means a very learned man, very learned man, and still trying, not ordinary man, but learned man, trying to control his senses. Yatato hy api kaunteya puruṣasya vipaścitaḥ, indriyāṇi pramā... But the senses are so strong that at certain point it fails even by the attempt of a very learned scholar who knows everything.

Lecture on BG 3.6-10 -- Los Angeles, December 23, 1968:

This Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is an art of living by which you will feel your senses are fully satisfied, but you are going to be free next life. This is the nice process. And artificially if you want to stop your senses, you will fail. That Kṛṣṇa says, "One who restrains the sense and organs of action but whose mind dwells on sense objects."

Just like Viśvāmitra Muni. There were many instances. He was a great king and he wanted to be yogi. And he went to forest, gave up his kingdom, went to forest. And he was meditating very seriously, and Indra, king of heaven, he sent some society girls of heavenly planet, Menakā. And she came. She began to dance before the closed-eyes yogi, and as soon as he heard, "Oh, there is very nice female voice and dancing," and as soon as he opened, he became captivated, embraced her. So everything gone. You see? So sense gratification, you cannot stop artificially.

Lecture on BG 4.1 -- Montreal, August 24, 1968:

You cannot stop the senses to work. That is the negative process. Because the senses are meant for working. Therefore you have to give better engagement to the senses. That will be explained in the... It is already explained in the Bhagavad-gītā, Second Chapter, paraṁ dṛṣṭvā nivartate (BG 9.59). Paraṁ dṛṣṭvā nivartate. If you force one to stop, it is very difficult. Therefore so many yogis also failed. Just like Viśvāmitra Muni. By force, he was trying to control his senses, but as soon as the sense got opportunity, one Menakā, a heavenly society girl, came before him, he became captivated. He became captivated. These examples are there. And the child was born, Śakuntalā. You know, everyone. So he was a great yogi. He also failed because it was artificially being tried.

Lecture on BG 4.1 -- Montreal, August 24, 1968:

So Ṭhākura Haridāsa told, "Yes, I know that. But because you came to me, therefore I stayed for three days..., three days to purify you. Now I'm glad that you are purified. You sit down here, chant Hare Kṛṣṇa. I am going from this place." (break) ...Viśvāmitra failed, but this bhakti-yogī, he conquered. This is karmendriya. If you want to force your senses to stop work, it is very difficult. But if you engage your senses for transcendental loving service of the Supreme Lord, it will be automatically, automatically stopped. That is stated.

Lecture on BG 4.15 -- Bombay, April 4, 1974:

When Viśvāmitra Muni approached Mahārāja Daśaratha for help, taking Rāmacandra and Lakṣmaṇa for killing that rākṣasī... Viśvāmitra Muni could kill that rākṣasī, but because he was brāhmaṇa, it was not his business to kill. He begged help from Mahārāja Daśaratha to lend Lord Rāmacandra and Lakṣmaṇa, to take Him there. This is the systematic way. The brāhmaṇas should be engaged in knowledge and distributing knowledge. That means their business is not fighting. The kṣatriyas, they should fight. The killing business is meant for the kṣatriya. That is also required.

Lecture on BG 4.26 -- Bombay, April 15, 1974:

You cannot control the senses simply by artificial means, by dhyāna, dhāraṇa, prāṇāyāma, yama-niyama, āsana, pratyāhāra. There are so many systems. Big, big yogis, they failed.

Just like Viśvāmitra Muni. He was practicing yoga, that indriya-saṁyama. He was especially... Because he was king, so especially he was very sexually inclined. And the yoga process, he was trying to control the sex. But what was the result? The result was that Menakā, a society girl of the heaven, she appeared, and she was traveling there. There have been many instances like that. And tinkling of bangles, oh, immediately his yoga practice was broken. And he become attached by Menakā and there was birth of Śakuntalā.

Lecture on BG 4.26 -- Bombay, April 15, 1974:

So that is being discussed by Kṛṣṇa. Here He is especially referring to the mystic yoga system, indriyāgniṣu juhvati, controlling the senses. So this controlling the senses... The simple method is that artificially if you want to practice yoga like Viśvāmitra Muni or Durvāsā Muni, very great... There are many big, big stories about these munis who were big, big yogis. This Durvāsā Muni traveled all over the universe and he went beyond the universe in the spiritual world. He saw Lord Viṣṇu personally. Still, he was defeated. There are many stories.

Lecture on BG 4.27 -- Bombay, April 16, 1974:

Actually, it is very difficult to control the mind. So artificially, by controlling the breathing system, there is the process, but still, it is difficult. As I explained yesterday, even a great yogi like Viśvāmitra, he also failed. There are many instances. There was another, Saubhari Muni. He was practicing yoga system within the water. And as soon as he was little agitated by the fish, he wanted to come out and marry and one king's daughter. He wanted to marry all the eight daughters. So there are many instances like that. It is very difficult to control the mind.

Lecture on BG 5.26-29 -- Los Angeles, February 12, 1969:

When you apply your senses for satisfaction of Kṛṣṇa, then it is called bhakti. And when your senses are engaged in the service of Kṛṣṇa it cannot be engaged otherwise. Otherwise the sense will be engaged in the sense objects. Therefore there is failure. Those who are not engaged in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, simply artificially trying, they fail. Viśvāmitra Muni, Durvāsā Muni, there are many great instances. These are artificial. But that is a process recommended. We may be successful to a certain extent but in this age it is very difficult to practice such things. Nobody can practice how to control the senses from the sense object.

Lecture on BG 6.1 -- Los Angeles, February 13, 1969:

Just like if you are actually practicing the regulative principles of yoga, then you can get eight kinds of perfection. You can become lighter than the cotton swab. You can become heavier than the stone. You can get anything, whatever you like, immediately. Sometimes you can even create a planet. Such powerful yogis are there. Viśvāmitra yogi, he did it actually. He wanted to get man from palm tree. "Why man should be begotten living ten months within the womb of mother. They'll be produced just like fruit." He did it like that. So sometimes yogis are so powerful, they can do. So these are all material powers. Such yogis, they are also vanquished. How long you can remain on this material power? So bhakti-yogīs, they do not want anything such.

Lecture on BG 6.40-43 -- New York, September 18, 1966:

Now, there is a story. There are many stories. One of them I am citing. It is very interesting. Viśvāmitra Muni. Viśvāmitra Muni, he was a great king, kṣatriya, but his priest, Vasiṣṭha Muni, he had great spiritual power. So he renounced his kingdom. He wanted to advance. He was kingly, royal order, but still, he wanted to advance in the spiritual orders. So he adopted yoga process, meditation. That time it was possible for adopting this process, yoga process. So he was meditating in such a way that the Indra, who was the king of heaven, he thought that "This man is trying to occupy my post." As there is competition... This is also... Heaven means that is also material world.

Lecture on BG 6.40-43 -- New York, September 18, 1966:

Similarly, that Indra, he thought that "This man is so strongly meditating, it may be that I may be deposed and he come to my seat." Then he arranged one of his society girls, Menakā, to go there and allure this muni. So when Menakā approached that ṛṣi, Viśvāmitra Ṛṣi, he was meditating. And simply by the sound of her bangles, he could understand, "There is some woman." And as soon as he saw there was heavenly, celestial beauty, he was captivated. Then there was a result, that a great... Śakuntalā. Perhaps some of you may know. There is a book made by Kālidāsa, Śakuntalā. This Śakuntalā is supposed to be the most beautiful girl in the world, and she was born by this combination of Viśvāmitra Muni and Menakā.

Lecture on BG 6.40-43 -- New York, September 18, 1966:

So when this girl was born, then Viśvāmitra thought, "Oh, I was advancing in my spiritual culture, and again I have been entrapped." So he was going out. At the same time his wife Menakā brought this girl before her, and little child is always attractive. She showed that "Oh, you have got such a nice girl, such beautiful girl, and you are going away? No, no. You should take care." So there is a picture, very nice. That is a very famous picture. That Menakā is showing Viśvāmitra Muni the girl, and the muni is like that, "No more show me." Yes. There is a picture. That is... Then he went away. So there are chances of failure. There are chances of failure. Just like a great sage like Viśvāmitra Muni, he also failed, failed for the time being. But Kṛṣṇa says that this failure is not, I mean to say, unsuccessful. As we have sometimes the proverb, that "Failure is the pillar of success," so especially in the spiritual life, this failure is not discouraging. This failure is not discouraging.

Lecture on BG 7.3 -- Vrndavana, October 31, 1973:

Yogis are engaged for aṣṭa-siddhi. Aṇimā-laghimā-prāpti-siddhi. They can become smaller than the smallest and heavier than the heaviest and they can get anything they desire. Prāpti, īśitā. They can control over, even they can create a planet also. Yoga-siddhi. Just like Viśvāmitra Muni, he was such a great yogi that he used to create human being from trees. So you can get all these siddhis by yoga-siddhi or by any other process, but real siddhi is how to get out of this entanglement of janma-mṛtyu-jarā-vyādhi. That is real siddhi.

Srimad-Bhagavatam Lectures

Lecture on SB 1.2.5 -- New Vrindaban, September 4, 1972:

Suppose a yogi is sitting here. You can ask him, "Give me a fresh pomegranate from Kabul." He will immediately give. So there are so many siddhis, perfection: aṇimā, laghimā, prāpti-siddhi, īśitā, vaśitā. A yogi can manufacture a planet, he is so powerful. Just like Viśvāmitra Yogi. He produced man from the tree. So these are yogic perfections, not simply pressing the nose. That is not. Yoga practice is to gain material power. That's all.

Lecture on SB 1.2.34 -- Vrndavana, November 13, 1972:

When Viśvāmitra Muni went to Mahārāja Daśaratha to ask for his two sons, Rāmacandra and Lakṣmaṇajī, to take them to the Daṇḍakāraṇya to kill the demon, so at that time, Mahārāja Daśaratha welcomed Viśvāmitra, Viśvāmitra Muni with these words: aihiṣṭaṁ yad punar-janma-jayāya, yatraṁ punar-janma-jayāya(?). Aihiṣṭam. Just like if I meet my friend... Suppose he's a businessman. So I'll ask you how your business going on nicely. Similarly, Viśvāmitra Muni, he was not a businessman. He was a great saint, and he was living in the forest. So what was the purpose? The purpose was aihiṣṭaṁ yat tat punar-janma-jayāya. As you are trying to conquer over the repetition of birth, punar-janma-jayāya...

Lecture on SB 1.7.16 -- Vrndavana, September 14, 1976:

So brāhmaṇa does not require any sword or any arrow to kill a man. His very word is sufficient. Therefore when somebody was to be killed, the brāhmaṇa would bring him to the kṣatriya—not killing himself by weapon. Just like Viśvāmitra, he wanted to kill one rākṣasī, so he came to Mahārāja Daśaratha, kṣatriya, to do the business of killing. There are so many... That is shastric evidences.

Lecture on SB 1.7.34-35 -- Vrndavana, September 28, 1976:

A brāhmaṇa's business is not to kill. Even brāhmaṇa can kill, he doesn't require even sword or any other weapon. Simply by cursing he can kill—brāhmaṇa was so powerful. But still, it is not the business of a brāhmaṇa. When killing is required, it is done by the kṣatriyas, not by the brāhmaṇas. Just like Viśvāmitra Muni, he was disturbed by the Tāḍakā rākṣasī. He was quite powerful. Even by cursing he could kill this Tāḍakā rākṣasī in the forest, but he did not do so. For killing the rākṣasī he approached Mahārāja Daśaratha. Because he is kṣatriya, he is the king. His business is to give protection to the disturbed citizens. Just like we apply to the magistrate, similarly the king is responsible. So he did not kill. Viśvāmitra formerly was kṣatriya, but since he became brāhmaṇa... By his endeavor in lifetime, he became a brāhmaṇa, a great sage, ṛṣi. So since he became brāhmaṇa, he was not interested in killing anyone. That is not brāhmaṇa's business. Brāhmaṇa's business is śamo damas titikṣā. Even if he is disturbed by somebody, titikṣā, he tolerates.

Lecture on SB 1.7.34-35 -- Vrndavana, September 28, 1976:

They should be trained means they should be advised by the brāhmaṇas. Therefore four divisions required. The brāhmaṇas have no interest or they have no time. Even a brāhmaṇa is made king... It is not his business. He may do it for some time, temporarily. Just like Viśvāmitra also did. But it is not his business. The brāhmaṇa should give advice to the ministers or the legislators. They should be all qualified brāhmaṇas, not paid man. Paid man has nothing to do...

Lecture on SB 1.7.34-35 -- Vrndavana, September 28, 1976:

Brāhmaṇa lived very humbly. He was not poor. Not that they are poor men. They were so rich that when Viśvāmitra approached Mahārāja Daśaratha, immediately he vacated his seat and welcomed, "Sir, sit down here." So respectful. This is Vedic culture. The brāhmaṇas would not accept any comfort, but the kṣatriyas would be very, very glad to give all comforts to the brāhmaṇas. In our śāstra, brāhmaṇa-bhojana, it is recommended that brāhmaṇas should be invited to take prasāda.

Lecture on SB 1.15.41 -- Los Angeles, December 19, 1973:

The whole thing is sense. Therefore consciousness, it depends on the senses, purifying the senses. Spirit soul is eternal, so his senses are eternal. You cannot stop the activities of his senses. That is not possible. Just like others. They think that "If we stop... " Just like Viśvāmitra Muni. He was a great yogi. He stopped the senses. He wanted to stop. He closed the eyes, "I'll not see a beautiful woman." But he failed as soon as he heard the tinkling sound of the bangles of the apsarā, Menakā.

Lecture on SB 3.25.21 -- Bombay, November 21, 1974:

Great, great personalities in India, they used to go to the forest to stop this repetition of punar janma. Just like Viśvāmitra Muni. Viśvāmitra Muni, when he approached Mahārāja Daśaratha to take with him Rāmacandra and Lakṣmaṇa—They were boys—to kill the Tāḍakā Rākṣasī... There was some disturbance. So although Viśvāmitra Muni could kill, but no, that was not the brāhmaṇa's business. It was the, to kill, to..., was the, to punish, it was king's business. So therefore they approached. So at that time Mahārāja Daśaratha greeted Viśvāmitra Muni: aihiṣṭaṁ yat tat punar-janma-jayāya. Just like when we meet a friend, if he's a businessman... Suppose he comes to see me. I am a sannyāsī, and he's a businessman. I ask him, "How your business is going on?" Because he's engaged in that way. And the gentleman who comes to see me, he will ask me, "Swamiji, how your preaching is going on?" He'll not ask me, "How your business is going on?"

Lecture on SB 5.5.1 -- Vrndavana, October 23, 1976:

They are making plans for so many things, but where is that plan to stop janma-mṛtyu-jarā-vyādhi-duḥkha? That is not so easy. Therefore they have avoided it. They do not touch this point. They are making arrangement for temporary so-called happiness. That attempt is done even by cats and dogs. That is not successful life. I have several times told you... This is Vedic civilization. When Visvamitra came to see Mahārāja Daśaratha... It is etiquette. Suppose a friend comes, we ask, "How are you, my friend? How things are going on?" So similarly, when Daśaratha Mahārāja inquired Viśvāmitra, "How are you?" that "How are you" was not ordinary question. He inquired, aihiṣṭaṁ yat punar janma jayāya. The great great saintly persons, sages, they are engaged in devotional service. What is the purpose? The purpose is not for some material gain. The purpose is different. That was inquired by Dāsaratha Mahārāja: aihiṣṭaṁ yat punar janma jayāya. "You are undergoing tapasya, austerities, for conquering over rebirth."

Lecture on SB 5.5.3 -- Boston, May 4, 1968:

There were many yogis in the history. Just like Viśvāmitra. He was a great king. He gave up everything for practicing yoga. Why? He was king. He could practice yoga. Now, the yoga practice was recommended to Arjuna. He said, "Oh, it is not possible for me." So it is not possible... Even five thousand years ago a person like Arjuna, he refused: "Oh, it is not possible for me." How ordinary man who has not practiced even controlling the senses and other things? No. It is not possible. The yoga practice is accepted as a standard way of self-realization. That is all right, provided it is cent percent properly executed. That is... Cent percent properly executed. Yes. But that is not possible in this age. Nobody can do that.

Lecture on SB 5.5.20 -- Vrndavana, November 8, 1976:

So there must be division. A brāhmaṇa can kill anyone simply by words. He is so powerful. But he does not do that. When Viśvāmitra was disturbed by Taraka Rākṣasī in the forest, he came to Dasaratha Mahārāja for help. He could kill that Taraka Rākṣasī simply by his word, but he would not do that. This is not brāhmaṇa's business. He wanted to take the help of a kṣatriya and kill the rākṣasī. Kṣatriya can kill. Brāhmaṇa can take charity. A kṣatriya can exact taxes, and vaiśya be engaged in producing food grains. Kṛṣi gorakṣya-vāṇijyaṁ vaiśya-karma svabhāva-jam (Bg 18.44). This is civilization. Aryan civilization means the division must be there.

Lecture on SB 6.1.7 -- Honolulu, May 8, 1976:

When Viśvamitra Muni went to see Mahārāja Daśaratha to ask the help of Lord Rāmacandra and Lakṣmaṇa... There was a demon. They were disturbing in the forest. The saintly persons were disturbed. They could kill that demon, but because they were brāhmaṇas, saintly person, they did not like the killing business in their own hand. That was the system. A brāhmaṇa will not kill. A brāhmaṇa, simply by cursing, he can kill. Doesn't require even open... Just like Mahārāja Parīkṣit, he was cursed by a boy brāhmaṇa that within seven days he'll be bitten by a snake and he'll die. The brāhmaṇas were so powerful. So brāhmaṇa is not joke. In Kali-yuga there is no such brāhmaṇa. So this Viśvamitra Muni came to Mahārāja Daśaratha to request that "Send your sons Rāmacandra and Laksmana to kill these demons." Kṣatriyas' business is... Kṣat. Kṣat means injury. If somebody is injuring your body, it is the duty of the government to save you: "Why unnecessarily you are injuring this...?"

Lecture on SB 6.1.12 -- Los Angeles, June 25, 1975:

Actually, we are being educated, we go to school, to college, to become responsible man. So this responsibility should be "How to stop this repetition of birth." In many places this is advised. And that is the only aim of human life. Punar-janma-jayāya. I have told you many times that when Viśvāmitra Muni went to Daśaratha Mahārāja to take Rāmacandra and Lakṣmaṇa to kill one demon in the forest... Viśvāmitra Muni is brāhmaṇa. He was so powerful, he could himself kill that demon, but because he is brāhmaṇa, he is not allowed to kill. A brāhmaṇa must be nonviolent. So therefore he went to the kṣatriya, Mahārāja Daśaratha. This is kṣatriya's business. Kṣatriya means..., kṣat means injury, and tra means delivered. The kṣatriya's duty is... There is somebody is creating disturbance, injury to others—it is the government's duty, kṣatriya's duty, to punish him immediately, or, if required, to kill him, immediately. That is kṣatriya's duty.

Lecture on SB 6.1.12 -- Los Angeles, June 25, 1975:

So this is intelligence. Therefore we should live very regulative life. And as I was going to say, the Vedic civilization... Just like the Visvamitra when he went to Mahārāja Daśaratha, kṣatriya, to get help, Mahārāja Daśaratha inquired that... Just like if we go to a friend, so what is our inquiry? "You are happy with your family, with your children?" Because they have a family. But here is a saintly man. So what should we inquire? Inquire, the inquiry is aihiṣṭhaṁ yat tam punar-janme-jayāya: "My dear Viśvāmitra Muni, brāhmaṇa, I know that you are all trying to get release from repetition of birth and death." Why he has gone to the forest? He has gone to the forest for executing austerity, so that next life may be not material but spiritual life. This is the aim of life. The whole human effort, civilization, should be conducted with the aim how to stop this repetition of birth and death. This is science.

Lecture on SB 6.1.15 -- New York, August 1, 1971:

Just like there are many examples. There are Dhruva, Viśvāmitra Muni. He underwent all this tapasya. He was a kṣatriya. He wanted to become a brāhmaṇa. There was a quarrel between him and a ṛṣi. So he saw the extraordinary power of the ṛṣi, and he wanted to become a brāhmaṇa. So he began austerity. But he became also a victim of Menakā, the society girl of heavenly planet. And being entangled, he begot a child. In this way he became implicated, because he was not pure.

Lecture on SB 6.1.15 -- Los Angeles, June 27, 1975:

Although superficially, outside, it appears that everything is burned, but the root remains there. The root remains there, and as soon as there will be facility or there will be rainy season, the same grasses and twigs and other things will come out again, new growth. That is... Even after so much tapasya... There are many instances. Just like Viśvāmitra Muni. Viśvāmitra Muni was a king. He wanted to become a brāhmaṇa, and he practiced mystic yoga for many years. Still, he became a victim of a woman, Menakā. He was meditating, closing eyes, and Indra sent this woman, Menakā. And simply by hearing the sound of the bangles, ching, ching, ching, "Oh, there is woman. Yes, very nice," (laughter) all mystic yoga finished. Then he begot one daughter. That..., her name is Śakuntalā, the famous beautiful daughter. So that history is there.

Lecture on SB 6.3.18-19 -- Gorakhpur, February 12, 1971:

As I have explained yesterday, devotees will have enemies. Kṛṣṇa had enemies. This world is such, envious. Ordinarily, they are envious. The whole world is full of enviousness. Even the greatest personalities like Indra, he is also envious. If somebody is undergoing great austerities, thus Indra becomes envious. Just like Viśvāmitra. Viśvāmitra was meditating by the yoga process. Immediately Indra became disturbed: "Oh, this man is practicing so much severe austerities. He may capture my post some day. So this man must be curbed down immediately." Just like in political party, everyone is thinking, "Oh, this man is becoming greater than me. So he should be curbed down; he should be checked. Otherwise, some day he may occupy my ministership." This is the position of the world. Everyone is envious. So the devotees have enemies. But the Viṣṇudūta protects, as Kṛṣṇa says, that kaunteya pratijānīhi na me bhaktaḥ praṇaśyati (BG 9.31), "My dear Arjuna, you can declare on My behalf that a devotee will never be... A pure devotee..." Always remember—a pure devotee.

Lecture on SB 7.9.10 -- Montreal, July 10, 1968:

The jñāna system, the yoga system is by force they are trying to detach. That is not possible. It may be possible for the time being. Just like Viśvamitra, a great sage. These are the historical references. He was a very great king and he wanted to realize self, and he began to meditate in the forest alone, as it is, this yoga system, that "He must be in secluded life. He must make his seat in a very sacred place and sit in this posture." There are... So he followed everything completely, perfect yogi.

Lecture on SB 7.9.10 -- Montreal, July 10, 1968:

But as soon as Indra saw that "This man is performing a great yoga system. He may not acquire my position," so he sent one beautiful girl, Menakā, to entice him. So she came, she began to dance before her (him), and there was tinkling sound, and at once his meditation broke. And she was very beautiful, coming from heaven, so he became attached, and the woman became pregnant. Then she got a child, Śakuntala, and then Viśvamitra came to this senses: "Oh, I left my kingdom, I came to forest for meditation. Again I am going to be another kingdom." So he decided that "I shall go away." So Menakā tried to entice him, "Oh, why you shall go? You just see how nice girl you have got. Just see." There is a picture. Perhaps you have seen. And Viśvamitra is doing like this: "Don't show me anymore. Let me go away." Of course, he was very much advanced. He could go. But this allurement is always there. But Kṛṣṇa is so beautiful and so nice that if you increase your love for Kṛṣṇa, then you have no more any attachment for anything, any beautiful thing of this world.

Sri Caitanya-caritamrta Lectures

Lecture on CC Adi-lila 1.11 -- Mayapur, April 4, 1975:

So whole Vedic system is designed in such a way that ultimately one is saved from this process of birth, death, old age and disease. Long, long ago, when Viśvāmitra Muni came to Mahārāja Daśaratha for begging Rāma-Lakṣmaṇa to take them to the forest because one demon was disturbing... They could kill, but the killing business is for the kṣatriyas. This is Vedic civilization. It is not the business of the brāhmaṇa. So the first reception Viśvāmitra Muni got from Mahārāja Daśaratha, that aihiṣṭhaṁ yat punar-janma-jayāya: "You are... You great sages, saintly persons, you have given up the society. You are living alone in the forest. What is the purpose? The purpose is punar-janma-jayāya, to conquer over repetition of birth." This is the purpose. Similarly, our, this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is also meant for the same purpose, punar-janma-jayāya, for conquering over repetition of birth and death. You should always remember this. A little mistake will spoil the whole scheme, little mistake. Nature is very strong.

Lecture on CC Adi-lila 7.3 -- Mayapur, March 3, 1974:

We cannot stop sense activities. That is not possible. Artificially if we stop, even as a big successful yogi or jñānī, it will not act. There are many instances. Just like Viśvāmitra Muni. He was a great yogi. So artificially he was trying to stop the sense activities. But it also failed, the attempt. Later on he met one beautiful woman and he failed in controlling the senses. That is the history. He was the biggest yogi, Viśvāmitra Muni. Similarly, there are many so-called jñānīs also, trying to become one with the Supreme. That is also not possible.

Purports to Songs

Purport to Bhajahu Re Mana -- Los Angeles, January 7, 1969:

The yogis try to control the mind by different gymnastic process. That is also approved. But it takes a long time, and sometimes there are failures. In most cases they are failures. Even a big yogi like Viśvāmitra, he also failed, what to speak of these teeny and nonsensical yogis.

Conversations and Morning Walks

1973 Conversations and Morning Walks

Conversation at Airport -- October 26, 1973, Bombay:

Prabhupāda: People are embarrassed with so many problems of life, but the real problem of life is how to stop birth, death, old age and disease. So people are callous. They have become so dull-headed that they do not understand the problem of life. Long, long ago when Viśvāmitra Muni saw Mahārāja Daśaratha, so Mahārāja Daśaratha inquired from the Viśvāmitra Muni, aihistaṁ yat taṁ punar janma jayaya (?): "My dear sir, the attempt that you are trying to conquer over death, how that business is going on nicely? Is there any interruption?" So this is our Vedic civilization, how to conquer over birth, death, old age and disease. But at the modern time there is no such information, neither anybody is interested.

Morning Walk -- December 2, 1973, Los Angeles:

Prabhupāda: They must have because they have no spiritual knowledge. Anyone who is not spiritually advanced, he cannot avoid the sex.

Hṛdayānanda: You said yesterday, adānta-gobhiḥ.

Prabhupāda: Yes. Big, big yogis, they fell victim to sex. Viśvāmitra Muni, many other instances! Saubhari, Saubhari Muni. He was meditating within the water, and some fish just, what is called, licked up, his gender.

1974 Conversations and Morning Walks

Room Conversation -- June 5, 1974, Geneva:

Puṣṭa-kṛṣṇa: Is a Vaiṣṇava, is he willing to maintain his body for the service of Lord Kṛṣṇa even if he has to break regulative principles—if it is necessary?

Prabhupāda: If it is necessary.

Yogeśvara: What's the name of that yogi who meditated for sixty thousand years?

Nitāi: Saubhari? Viśvāmitra.

Prabhupāda: Vālmīki.

Yogeśvara: No.

Nitāi: Viśvāmitra?

Prabhupāda: Viśvāmitra.

Yogeśvara: He also had to eat dog, I think.

Prabhupāda: Yes.

Yogeśvara: There's a story about that.

Prabhupāda: Yes, Viśvāmitra. How they exist in that open, and there was snow. For eating they... Eighteen days?

1975 Conversations and Morning Walks

Morning Walk -- May 7, 1975, Perth:

Prabhupāda: Yes, you must eat. But when good things are available, why should you eat bad things? You must be pacified.

Amogha: Was there a story? The Hindus always tell this story about I think Viśvāmitra Ṛṣi eating a dog or something?

Prabhupāda: Sometimes. There was no food.

Amogha: They like that story. What about in the Buddhist philosophy; we understand that...

Prabhupāda: No killing.

1976 Conversations and Morning Walks

Garden Conversation -- September 3, 1976, Vrndavana:

Hari-śauri: I heard a story, Viśvāmitra once he grew people from trees. Is that correct?

Prabhupāda: Everything is possible by Kṛṣṇa's inconceivable energy. Everything is possible. That is inconceivable. It is called therefore "inconceivable." You, we cannot conceive how it is done. Our intelligence is very little. We cannot conceive. Therefore we say, "Oh, this is all mythology." Because we cannot conceive of it. Whatever we cannot conceive we take it as mythology. Nothing is mythology. Everything is possible.

1977 Conversations and Morning Walks

Conversation with Yogi Amrit Desai of Kripalu Ashram (PA USA) -- January 2, 1977, Bombay:

Prabhupāda: No, no. It will not agree (avail?). One may be artificially tyāgī, but if there is no bhakti he'll fall down. Just like Viśvāmitra was a great yogi, but because there was no bhakti he fell down. He had relationship with Menakā and gave birth to Śakuntalā, such a big yogi. So he fall down, must fall down in māyā, because there is no bhakti. So they have so many cases we see, fall down. Then if you fall down, then where is your bhakti, jñāna? Nothing. But bhakti does not fall down. If he's really on the bhakti stage he does not fall down. Others must fall down.

Conversation: 'How to Secure Brahmacaris' -- June 24, 1977, Vrndavana:

Prabhupāda: That's it. If there is no quarrel between husband and wife, you can be happy underneath a tree. You know Nala-Damayanti?

Indian man (1): Eh?

Prabhupāda: Nala-Damayanti?

Indian man (1): Yeah.

Prabhupāda: They were happily living by covering their one cloth. Still, they were living peacefully. They were so poverty-stricken. Rāja Hariścandra lost everything, but because there was peace between husband and..., they were living. Viśvāmitra saw separately. There are so many instances. That is lost now, to live peacefully, husband and wife. Throughout the whole world became sour. And still in India, "Eh, I have no other..." There is stock of grain. So how many people have got stock of grain nowadays? Dhānyaṁ yatra susañcitam. (laughs) Nobody.

Meeting With Governor of Tamil Nadu -- July 31, 1977, Vrndavana:

Prabhupāda: So our movement is on that platform, how to stop. Our whole Vedic culture is based on that process. When Viśvāmitra Mahārāja went to see Daśaratha about..., Daśaratha Mahārāja inquired from Viśvāmitra, aihistaṁ(?) yat punar-janma-jayāya: "You are great saintly person. You are trying to conquer over birth and death. Is your process going on nicely?" Viśvāmitra inquired Daśaratha Mahārāja about royal activities, government, prosperity, because he was kṣatriya and he was brāhmaṇa. So my request... This, our Gītā philosophy, that cātur-varṇyaṁ mayā sṛṣṭaṁ guṇa-karma-vibhāgaśaḥ... (BG 4.13). There must be a class of men, ideal brāhmaṇas; a class of men, ideal kṣatriyas; class of men, ideal vaiśyas; and balance, śūdras, to help. That will make the human society happy. Cooperate.


1970 Correspondence

Letter to Janardana -- Los Angeles 16 January, 1970:

So Narada Muni says that these symptoms are not stereotyped or stagnant; they are flexible. A man may be born in the family of a Brahmana but he might have the tendency of a Ksatriya or Vaisya or Sudra. Similarly a man may be born in the family of a Sudra or Candala but he may have the tendencies for a Brahmana. Just like Ekalavya was born in a Candala family but he had the tendency of a Ksatriya. Similarly Visvamitra Muni was born in a family of Ksatriyas but his tendency was of becoming a Brahmana.

Compiled byRishab + and Laksmipriya +
Completed sectionsALL +
Date of first entryJune 13, 0011 JL +
Date of last entryJune 15, 0011 JL +
Total quotes50 +
Total quotes by sectionBG: 0 +, SB: 0 +, CC: 0 +, OB: 0 +, Lec: 41 +, Conv: 8 + and Let: 1 +