You cannot stop desires. That is not possible, but purify the desire. Purify the desire. Purify desire means that the same hopes, hope against hope, just to improve your position as devotee... That will help you to make your life successful

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"You cannot stop desires. That is not possible, but purify the desire. Purify the desire. Purify desire means that the same hopes, hope against hope, just to improve your position as devotee... That will help you to make your life successful"

Lectures

Bhagavad-gita As It Is Lectures

You cannot stop desires. That is not possible, but purify the desire. Purify the desire. Purify desire means that the same hopes, hope against hope, just to improve your position as devotee... That will help you to make your life successful.
Lecture on BG 16.13-15 -- Hawaii, February 8, 1975:

There is no question of "how much love I have increased for Kṛṣṇa." That is bhakta, bhakti. But where there is no bhakti, they are thinking of this material increase. Asau mayā hataḥ, thinking others are enemy... Actually, in the higher status of life, a devotee does not think anyone as enemy. Samaḥ sarveṣu bhūteṣu mad-bhaktiṁ labhate parām (BG 18.54). Samaḥ. He knows that "Nobody can become my enemy unless Kṛṣṇa desires. So why shall I think of him as my enemy? Kṛṣṇa has desired him to act as my enemy just to correct me, just to make me more advanced in spiritual life. So why shall I take any action upon him as enemy?" Of course, this stage is meant for very highly elevated devotee. That is not meant for ordinary devotee. But the fact is this: "How one can become my enemy? If I am Kṛṣṇa's servant, how one can become my enemy? If one is acting as my enemy, it is Kṛṣṇa's desire. I have got some defect, and he is correcting me." Therefore it is called samaḥ sarveṣu bhūteṣu mad-bhaktiṁ labhate parām (BG 18.54). That is the topmost devotee's conception.

But when we are preaching, we have to come to the second stage. There are three stages of devotional life. The first stage, or the lower stage, the middle stage, and the top stage. So this kind of conception, that "Nobody is my enemy," that is on the topmost stage. That is not to be imitated. When you are preaching, you have to come to the middle stage. Even if you are on the top stage, you have to come on the middle stage because you have to discriminate: "Here is a devotee; here is a demon." On the top stage there is no such thing as demon and devotee. The top stage, the devotee sees: "Everyone is engaged in Kṛṣṇa's service. Simply I am not engaged." This is topmost devotee's vision, that "I am lacking Kṛṣṇa's devotion."

Just like Rādhārāṇī thinks that "All others, they are engaged in Kṛṣṇa's devotion, but I could not." Caitanya Mahāprabhu said. Caitanya Mahāprabhu said that "I have not a pinch of devotion to Kṛṣṇa. Then if you say, 'Why you are crying?' that is to make a show." Caitanya Mahāprabhu said that "I am crying for Kṛṣṇa just to advertise Myself that I have become a big... But actually I have not a pinch of devotion to Kṛṣṇa." "No you are so great devotee. Everyone says." "No. Everyone may say, but I am not." "Why you are not?" "Now, because without Kṛṣṇa, still I am living. That is the proof that I have no love for Kṛṣṇa." This is Caitanya Mahāprabhu's statement. "If I had any drop of love for Kṛṣṇa, how I could live so long without Kṛṣṇa?" Śūnyāyitaṁ jagat sarvaṁ govinda-viraheṇa me. So this is love of Kṛṣṇa, that "How can I live?"—separation from Kṛṣṇa. This is Caitanya Mahāprabhu's philosophy. And the Gosvāmīs followed them. They never said that "Now I have seen Kṛṣṇa." Never said. The Gosvāmīs... Caitanya Mahāprabhu also said that "I was dreaming Kṛṣṇa. Why you got Me awakened? I lost the chance." But the Gosvāmīs, they said that

he rādhe vraja-devike ca lalite he nanda-sūno kutaḥ
śrī-govardhana-kalpa-pādapa-tale kālindī-vane kutaḥ
ghoṣantāv iti sarvato vraja-pure khedair mahā-vihvalau
vande rūpa-sanātanau raghu-yugau śrī-jīva-gopālakau

They were simply feeling separation. In Vṛndāvana they lived, but they never said, "Last night I saw Kṛṣṇa was dancing." Never said. They said that "Kṛṣṇa and gopīs, Rādhārāṇī, where you are all?" He rādhe vraja-devike ca lalite he nanda-sūno kutaḥ: "Where you are?" Kālindī-vane kutaḥ govardhana-kalpa-pādapa-tale: "Either on the..., near the Govardhana Hill or on the bank of the river Yamunā, where you are?" This is called bhajana, devotion in separation, feeling separation. So in this way we shall increase our aspiration more and more. That is required. That āśā, that hope, that expectation, will lead us to the topmost platform of devotion.

So instead of thinking always like this demon that "I have got so much money. Now I shall get further amount of money and it will be like so much money. He is my enemy. I have killed one of them. The other enemy..." This is going on actually, in the material field. So we have to rectify. We have to rectify. Āḍhyo 'bhijanavān asmi: "I am the richest man. I have got so many friends, all aristocratic." Abhijanavān. Janavān, dhanavān. Dhanavān means possessing wealth, and janavān means possessing men, strength, popular strength, and strength of money.

So Caitanya Mahāprabhu said that na dhanaṁ na janaṁ na kavitāṁ vā jagadīśa kāmaye. These are the bhakti path. The demon is thinking, "I have got so much money. I have got so many friends, and so many relatives, so many family members." Caitanya Mahāprabhu is denying that na dhanaṁ na janaṁ na sundarīṁ kavitāṁ vā jagadīśa kāmaye (Cc. Antya 20.29, Śikṣāṣṭaka 4), just the opposite: "I don't want any material friends or followers, neither I want money. Simply I want to serve You. Simply I want to serve You." So in these three verses everything is... Word meanings are there. So these are the demonic propensities, and the very thing can be changed into devotional service, and then we become devotee or demigod. So I am going tomorrow. So here you shall try to become devotee, not to think like demons. That will not help us. Then āśā-pāśa-śatair baddhāḥ. We'll remain bound up in material bondage. You cannot stop desires. That is not possible, but purify the desire. Purify the desire. Purify desire means that the same hopes, hope against hope, just to improve your position as devotee... That will help you to make your life successful. Thank you very much. (end)