First I bow down to the lotus feet of my Śrīla Gurudeva, Śrīla Bhakti Prajñāna Keśava Gosvāmī Mahārāja, and then I bow down to Svami Mahārāja, Śrīla Bhaktivedānta Svami Mahārāja.
First of all, I want to tell what the present problem is. We know we have wonderful, medical departments, and can go here and there, communicate all over the world, and so many things have been invented. The whole world has come in our hands. We can go from the last part of the Earth and we can talk to each other from the North Pole to South Pole. We can see football playing in India when it is going on in Germany or anywhere else. If any part of the body is rotten, new parts also can be arranged. So these are very wonderful inventions. We have invented weapons that can destroy the whole world in a second. We are thinking that we have developed our science and all other things but we have lost something. What thing have we lost? Love for each other. No one is loving others. The husband has separated his bank from the wife. The daughter has separated. Children have separated accounts from the beginning. The husband and wife have separated accounts, not believing each other from the beginning. There is no prema like this.
At first we have seen in India, about 15 or 16 years before, that there was so much love and affection for each other. There were no separate accounts. And there was loving each other, loving animals, loving trees, and what to speak of mother and father and relatives. We have seen in Kolkata, Delhi, and in Bombay, so many crowds, lakhs and lakhs of persons, but if anyone falls down, none are there to pick them up. In this civilization, we see that prema has gone away and only the gratification of senses is coming. We are not loving each other. We are loving dogs, cows, and all other animals and creepers, but we are not attached to our loving persons, because we know that they will cheat us. So we can believe dogs. They will not cheat us; cows will not cheat us. But we cannot have faith in persons. We are quite helpless there; only faith is in animals like dogs and cows. We are seeing this all the time. Even today, war is going on so much. The problem of this civilization is we have no prema for each other, what to speak of God. If we have prema, love and affection for the Supreme Personality of Godhead, then we can have love for each other.
The same problem came 5, 000 years ago, at the time of Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa never came to start a fight with others. He has not come to do the Mahābhārata, to cause a fight for reputation or wealth. He has descended only to establish love and attraction in this world. When Kṛṣṇa came, all were fighting for name, fame, wealth, women, sense gratification, or lust…In the Gītā, Śrīmad Bhagvatam and Vedas, it has been written that those who follow the Supreme Personality of Godhead, they are devotees, and are called demigods and those who don’t follow and always quarrel and want sense gratification are called demons. There are two sides from ancient times. When the world was created, demons were there and demigods were also there. And they were always fighting. Demons always create troubles and give suffering to all. Demigods, like devotees, always wanted to check them, and not create any trouble and live peacefully and have prema and affection for each other and for Kṛṣṇa.
In Mahābhārata we see that there were two brothers: one of Pāṇḍu, and one of Dhṛtarāṣṭra. But Dhṛtarāṣṭra was blind. And he thought that I should be the owner of the whole world and I should keep all this reputation and all this wealth. He was blind because he was not seeing the future, he was not a devotee and he was not seeing Kṛṣṇa as God. But Pāṇḍu was like a demigod. He was a devotee. He wanted that in the whole world there should be love for each other and love for Kṛṣṇa. Dhṛtarāṣṭra had 100 sons. And Pāṇḍu had only five sons. They made an order when all the boys were young. It was decided by Vyāsa and Bhisma-pitamaha that the kingdom should be divided into two, one part to be given to the Pāṇḍavas and the other one to the hundred sons, of whom Duryodhan was the eldest.
Duryodhan wanted to cheat the Pāṇḍavas, by hook or by crook. He wanted to take the whole kingdom, not giving even an inch, like suchi bhadra, a needlepoint of land. He did not want to give. Then Duryodhan did so many false things. Anyhow he took the whole kingdom and the Pāṇḍavas were bound to go to the jungle. Kṛṣṇa wanted that there be some compromise, but He also was not successful. At last it was perceived that the battle must happen between the Pāṇḍavas and Kauravas. Arjuna requested Kṛṣṇa that, “I am giving my chariot and everything to Kṛṣṇa. And Kṛṣṇa should take my reins, and what He will do I will do, and what He will tell me I will do. I am giving myself to the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa.” So he then told Kṛṣṇa, “I want to see who is coming to fight.”
Then Kṛṣṇa took his chariot in the middle of the two parties and Arjuna saw that his grandfather Bhisma-pitamaha was ready to fight with him. All of his brothers, Duryodhana, and Arjuna’s hundred cousin-brothers, and relatives, were ready to fight. And also he saw Abhimanyu and all others on his side all ready to kill each other. At once he dropped his bow and arrow and said, “I don’t want to kill anyone for artha, wealth or reputation. I don’t want to kill.”
This is the background of the Gītā. Some people don’t know the Gītā’s teachings deeply because they think that Kṛṣṇa is telling Arjuna to fight. Why fight? If anyone wants to realize Gītā, what are the teachings? Then you will have no doubt about this. Kṛṣṇa has not come to create fighting or anything like this. He has come to give peace of mind, tranquility, and happiness, and establish the love that I have told before. He gave the Gītā and its teachings to understand what is yoga. Without following the rules and regulations, and accepting the teachings of Kṛṣṇa, or yoga, we cannot be happy. Everyone wants happiness. No one wants sorrow or suffering but yet we are suffering. The whole world attempts to be happy but yet why are we quarrelling to become happy? At last we see that what we do to get happiness is in vain. We will have to be born, we will have to die.
Kṛṣṇa told so many things about yoga. We should understand. If you try to understand the 2nd chapter of Gītā, we can understand all. It is very hard to penetrate the teachings of the 2nd chapter, but this is the platform of Gītā. In Gītā, Kṛṣṇa has not given so many different kinds of yoga. He has only given one yoga. In the beginning it is called karma-yoga, in the middle bhakti-yoga, and in the last 6 chapters He has called it jñāna-yoga. But all yogas are giving one. First karma-yoga, then jñāna-yoga, then bhakti-yoga.
You should know so many things. I cannot define all these things in one day, one hour lecture, or in one class. I am trying to give an idea that yoga is one. So I have told you that when we will begin yoga, it is called karma-yoga, then in the middle it will be jñāna-yoga, and when it matures then it is called bhakti-yoga. Karma-yoga and karma are not the same thing and jñāna and jñāna-yoga are not the same thing. At once we should know that Kṛṣṇa is saying, “Don’t be karmīs.” Who are karmīs? Those who just do anything, only for their self-gratification, not for Kṛṣṇa.
“I am going.” In this there is no object. But what are those doings? Not karma. “I am going,” is not karma. If you do anything, like going to the market to buy any fruit for you and your children, then it is karma. If you are going, but there is no aim and object of going then it is jñāna. If you are going to the market to buy some fruits to offer it to Kṛṣṇa then it is bhakti-yoga. So that karma, which adds us with Kṛṣṇa, that karma is karma-yoga, otherwise it is the karma that will bind you in the chain of birth and death and sorrow and suffering. If you are seeing that I am not this body, that I am a soul, I am spirit…. We should not do any karma for us, because they will take us to hell.
If he is doing that, “I am Brahma, I want salvation from this world.” For this adopts:
mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja
ahaṁ tvāṁ sarva-pāpebhyo
mokṣayiṣyāmi mā śucaḥ
[Abandon all varieties of religion and just surrender unto Me. I shall deliver you from all sinful reactions. Do not fear.]
Like Brahma, I want salvation, I want to be Brahma, then it is jñāna.