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IS HARE KRISHNA A DANGEROUS CULT???



Easy. Easy. Let's start with simple logic. It's not difficult. There is a section and there is a whole. A section is part of a whole. A whole is never a part of a section. For example: if we take a drop of a seawater, it's a section of the whole, the big sea. But if we say that now I'm holding a sea in my hand, that's kind of dumb, isn’t it? "Look, I have the sea in my hand!"—a crazy person, or a poet might say like that, but it's not reality. Now, in this world we see so many wholes and so many sections. Just like I can be called Mr. Thompson and be a section of the whole Thompson family. Or The Beatles—a famous rock'n'roll band—is a whole, and tiny little Ringo Starr behind the drums is its' section. There's a whole year—2012—ahead of us, and yet there are sections like January, February, March, April... etc. So wholes and sections. Is that cool? Ok. Ok. Now, let's go beyond the known, beyond the perception of our senses. Cuz pretty much all of the previous examples I gave can be perceived by our senses. "Senses? What do you mean?" Well, simple. Just like your eyes: a very important sense through which we perceive what we call a "reality." A reality? What is "reality"? Hold on a sec. Before we get into the "everything is relative man" game, let me express what's on my mind today. Is that alright with you? Thanks…

So now, the beyond the known is a very dangerous zone—many of us have been cheated. Cheating basically takes advantage of our ignorance of the unknown. Like a cheater drug dealer cheats the people addicted to intoxication. In exchange for their money, he gives them what they think is heroin. But in reality, there's only very small percentage of pure heroin. Most of it is lots of junk—white powder or something like that—just so he can save as much of the pure heroin as he can, sell it to someone else and cheat him too. Of course, the addicts even know it's cheating, but they still they have to go and get it because they are forced to settle with whatever is available due to their habit. And that's our position, you see? Although we don't want to be cheated, we are forced to make solutions based on the unknown on a regular basis in our daily life whether we like it or not, because we are under the habit of identifying our true selves with these temporary bodies. (Kind of like when I tend to scream when someone chops off a part of my body?) How do you know that this particular college or job you're applying for will be ok for you? Still you have to pick something, otherwise your parents won't support you, or you end up homeless or something like that. I don't know what you do. Or, or.. I got it! You're supposed to select your mate. That's like super difficult, isn't it? Cuz in the present society there's so much ego going on and everyone wants to compete and screw others and so on and so on. Where's the guarantee that your mate will not turn out to be a real jerk, who just takes advantage and exploits your fine sentiments for his/her sense gratification? But some of us at one point realize, "I can't go on like this. I think I'm gonna connect with some other person and face the world like that, in two." And then you end up all confused, cuz you can’t find anyone due to the paranoia of being exploited. But at the same time, you need someone. In other words, there are instances where we are forced to deal with the unknown, whether we like it or not. So, now it is not a question whether it is important to deal with the unknown or not, it is a question of HOW to deal with the unknown, you see? We have to deal with it. Not the relative, computer-like yes/no, but a simple and all encompassing HOW. Say it again: "HOW." HOW are you? Doing fine? Ok. Carry on.

So what is that beyond the known? Many things, but we want to go to the root. We don't want to be limited. You want to be limited? Well, I don't want to be limited, and you don’t want to be limited either, no matter what you say now just to distract me from what I’m trying to build here, tricky boy! Because the soul, or that which we are, is never limited. Whatever limitations are here are due to these bodily designations: man, woman, ugly, beautiful. Instead of seeing you as a beautiful and free personality with his/her beautiful individuality, they want to put you in a box: a woman. Or check this out: a man. So this is the nature of the soul, or that which we are, the unlimited consciousness within. Not supremely unlimited (cuz if that was the case, why would we end up here in the material world in the clutches of material energy, doing things which we don't like doing, right?), yet unlimited nevertheless. Unlimited in the sense of not being confined to these bodily concepts.

So that root, what is that? That root is the total whole. Or The Total Whole. Like the ultimate, you know? Now, some of you might object that this smells like God! And you will try to kill the discussion (cuz that's all we're doing right now, you see? I'm not trying to convert you, nor force some dogma on you. Easy. Easy.) By saying: What if there's nothing like the total whole? What if what you call the "total whole" is yet another section of some other whole and that is a section of some more wholesome whole, etc. Nice one, but now, and this might sound surprising, cuz usually that’s what people ask us, not that we ask that, but: where's the evidence? You see, everything we say, provided we want to communicate of course, should be backed up by something we could both relate to. If we want to have a wonderful free style monologue just so that everyone can see how wonderful we are, that’s ok, but you can’t have that in two. You see? Like you have some faith, that's ok, but if you want to communicate that faith to me, I need it backed up by some sort of knowledge. Let's say I have faith to go to the beach, because I think we're going to enjoy it. Now, let's say you don't have that faith. Your faith is that you want to stay home and sleep; then I have to use some evidence. So I might say something like: Remember how we used to go to the beach last year, how cool it was? How you enjoyed it so much? And how you didn't want to go home as it was so cool and nice and wonderful and you name it. So now I'm using one type of evidence called history. In other words, I'm using previous experience to back up my present faith. This type of evidence very much dominates the present society. Like for example, because some people had a bad experience with people who claim to be worshippers of God (but in reality are simply using God to build their ego), when we, the Krishna devotees, approach them to chant with us, eat with us and enjoy the wonderful transcendental pleasures in Krishna consciousness with us, sometimes they frown. No, I don't believe in God. Because for them God means a cruel, dry person who has to go to work, just like many of us in the early morning subways, to take care of the world, punish the sinners and who actually does not want you to feel pleasurable and free, but quite the opposite, a God who wants you to be miserable and scared cuz He’s fed up of your messing up His plans. So naturally, when we say: Krishna is God, they immediately recollect that previous experience with a so-called priest, or a so-called Christian family member, or someone on the street who called you devil-obsessed for having some weird clothes on, or something extraordinary, which you thought was cool but he didn't like. So that is one type of evidence: history. This is very nice.

But it is not perfect. Why? Because the experience upon which that history has been made might have been wrongly assessed. Actually, our experience is always limited, because, we gather such experience through our limited senses. But there are other types of evidence too. The sacred Vedas mention anuman, hypothesis. Going to the beach is cool, because if you stay home and sleep, you'll get depressed and lazy, you will fall into what we call the mode of ignorance—tamas. This is hypothesis. I’m giving you an argument. "If you do this, then this might happen." So direct experience, history, hypothesis; in this way we come to the most perfect evidence: sabda, or hearing the info from the perfect source, and keeping it perfect by not adulterating it. If I tell you that in the Vedas hypothesis is called anuman, and if I'm not lying, then you don't have to go and search for a dictionary of the Sanskrit language in a library and waste a whole day not being able to find one. No. And again, provided I'm not lying, if you simply trust that, "Ok this guy, he's a Hare Krishna devotee, I guess he kind of understands these kinds of things, let me put my trust in him on this," you will advance faster in your understanding, you see? It’s faster. Like the internet. Now, forget about the bad things for a sec. Who can deny the benefits which it provides? Just because the internet sometimes lies doesn't mean that you can’t find true things on it. And this is what it's all about. Instead of trying to gather all the sections of knowledge, (which is a totally futile attempt due to our limited position of NOT being able to even get to know all the sections of knowledge, what to speak of seeing them in an unbiased way, and what to speak of putting them and understanding them all in a context without using them just to build my own dogma) why not use time to find a perfect source, from which we can derive all of the knowledge? Have we tried? And if we did (cuz many people use it very cheaply the phrase, "Did that, done that.”), do we know what the process is for searching such a source? Do we know what the characteristics are of such a source? Yes, just for a sec, pay attention to the latter two questions. Hmm?

So, the Vedas are considered to be the most authoritative source of knowledge in the world and we accept them as such through the process of sruti or hearing. Through seeing I cannot ascertain what’s behind a wall. Through hearing, though, I can see what’s behind a wall if someone from behind the wall tells me.

One section of the Vedic literature is called Upanisad and in it there’s another subdivision called Sri Isopanisad, which deals specifically with the subject matter of the complete total whole. It says:


om purnam adah purnam idam

purnat purnam udacyate

purnasya purnam adaya

purnam evavasisyate


“The Personality of Godhead is perfect and complete. And be-cause He is completely perfect, all emanations from Him, such as this phenomenal world, are perfectly equipped -as a complete whole. Whatever is produced of the complete whole is also complete by itself. And because He is the Complete Whole, even though so many complete units emanate from Him, He remains the complete balance.”


(Sri Isopanisad, Invocation)


So even though the Complete Whole is generating so many sections, it yet remains complete. Another characteristic of the Complete whole is explained in the following quote by Shrila Prabhupada in the purport to this verse:


“The Complete Whole must have everything, both within our experience and beyond our experience. Otherwise He cannot be complete.”


(Iso. Invocation purport)


Now, let’s go back to the question why there has to be a Complete Whole in the first place.

As mentioned in the invocation to Sri Isopanisad, because the Complete Whole is complete, the sections of the complete whole are also complete by themselves.

In other words, because this world is relative, it's relative to something right? It is not relative just by itself. If it was relative by itself, we would call it absolute. So because it is relative to something, the things we see here must be included in that something. And because we see that everything here belongs to some whole, whether it's Montreal being part of the whole Canada, or you being a part of your whole family, everything that exists must be a part of the Complete Whole. This is the Complete Whole.

So, when we say Krishna, we mean the Complete Whole. Not a Hindu or Indian god, not a religion, not a faith, not a sect(ion). You might call the total whole in a different way; Jehovah, Allah, or simply God, but that doesn't matter—this is just semantics. It's clear that the total whole is for all of us. It's not for me, it's not for you. It's universal, unlimited, complete and total. And because it's complete, unlimited and total, it must be a person. If it's not person, there's a flaw in its completeness. Then I myself, who is just like a little tiny nothing, am more than God becuz I’m a person? I am more than God, becuz I’m a person? He’s more than God, because he’s person? So we’re all persons and God is not? Then what kind of a looser God is? You see, then God is losing out on that wonderful pleasurable feeling of being a unique individual. So it is not like that. God is a person. So now, Krishna is not just an opinion, or yet another name, but it is the elaborate description of that person. From the Vedic literatures which our spiritual master Srila Prabhupada brought for us from the ancient times of a greatly advanced and sophisticated civilization, we can have a very clear idea how that person acts, how He looks like, how He is enjoying, that He's even enjoying in the first place, and also how we can develop our unadulterated love for Him: Krishna.

For example, in another ancient scripture, called Sri Brahma samhita, which has been actually spoken billions of years ago at the beginning of this particular creation by the demigod-creator Lord Brahma, it is said that Krishna’s body is sad-cid-ananda: eternal, and full of knowledge and bliss. He’s engaged in tending cows, yielding all desire and His Divine Abode is built with touchstone and surrounded by desires trees and served by millions of Goddesses of fortune. Furthermore, He is the primeval Lord, adept in playing on His flute, with blooming eyes like lotus petals with head decked with peacock's feather, with the figure of beauty tinged with the hue of blue clouds, and His unique loveliness is charming millions of Cupids.

Nowhere in the world (and this is not a puffed up statement, but you can make a test) is there any description of that Supreme Person as elaborate as in the scriptures such as the Brahma-samhita, Srimad-Bhagavatam or Srimad-Bhagavad-gita. There His different potencies, different energies and how they work together are explained in a scientific manner.

It is explained there that this planet is just one among many millions of other planets, there are many millions and millions of universes just like this one we are in, and even though Krishna is completely conscious of everything in the material creation and is the Supreme controller of all that is, He is yet completely aloof and enjoying His transcendental pastimes in His Abode in the spiritual sky simultaneously. In order to have benefit of this great knowledge we have to go beyond our limited sense perception. Let’s not be like a blind man who is trying to understand the sun.

Shrila Prabhupada has left behind these literatures for all the intelligent people of the world so they can quench their thirst for the whole knowledge and even go beyond and be situated on a transcendental plane of existence.

So if you don’t want to be limited and if you no longer find happiness in these different sections of knowledge, please do not confuse this great movement for a sectarian movement, or a religious sect, which deals with only partial understanding, or an aspect of the absolute, or is appealing to a section of society only. No. Krishna consciousness is a universal science, and we are inviting everyone to bring whatever arguments they have, or whatever questions they have, and our master His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada is going to answer them personally from his books. Not in a fanatical way, trying to put down your character to shut you up, or distract your attention on some other point to confuse you in the way we are used to, not like that. But in what we might call a really scientifically based discussion on a human platform. The animals cannot take part in such a discussion, you see? Why? Because the animals are just not interested in solving the problem of death. Instead of wasting valuable time, it is better that such animal-like men go their way as they have still not asked about the real cause of our suffering. No, this is for the intelligent person, who asks himself: "I do not like suffering, still I suffer. Why? And more importantly How to avoid this?" Right? This is intelligence. How to avoid it? How to RELIEVE the suffering. Look at all the inventions, take the plane for example. Instead of suffering a long journey, they have invented a plane which takes you to Europe in a few hours. So of course, these inventions are not the ultimate solution. They are mere attempts to ease our suffering. The real suffering is death. Death makes all our happiness here in the material life meaningless, and some modern philosophers, like the existentialists for example, became so much aware of this fact that they lost all hope and some of them even committed suicide. But there’s no need to commit suicide actually. We should very soberly look at the problem and try to find a solution. This is called intelligence, and if you have come to this platform by now, then you will appreciate the gems Shrila Prabhupada has brought for the world. Just try touching them with your eyes gently and Krishna will touch your heart in person.

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