Foolishly active

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Srimad-Bhagavatam

SB Canto 1

They forget their permanent identity and become foolishly active for impermanent occupations, forgetting altogether their prime duty.
SB 1.13.22, Purport:

The body is born, it develops, stays, creates other bodies, dwindles and then vanishes. But foolish men want to make a permanent settlement of the perishable body and think that their estate, children, society, country, etc., will give them protection. With such foolish ideas, they become overtaken by such temporary engagements and forget altogether that they must give up this temporary body and take a new one, again to arrange for another term of society, friendship and love, again to perish ultimately. They forget their permanent identity and become foolishly active for impermanent occupations, forgetting altogether their prime duty. Saints and sages like Vidura approach such foolish men to awaken them to the real situation, but they take such sādhus and saints as parasites of society, and almost all of them refuse to hear the words of such sādhus and saints, although they welcome show-bottle sādhus and so-called saints who can satisfy their senses. Vidura was not a sādhu to satisfy the ill-gotten sentiment of Dhṛtarāṣṭra. He was correctly pointing out the real situation of life, and how one can save oneself from such catastrophies.

Lectures

Bhagavad-gita As It Is Lectures

Sometimes they divide, four classes of men: lazy intelligent, active intelligent, and lazy fool and active fool. The active fool is fourth-class because whatever he'll do, it is foolish.
Lecture on BG 13.35 -- Geneva, June 6, 1974:

There must be intelligence. They have no intelligence. They are thinking of philanthropic work, but still thinking that "I am this body." So what that philanthropic work will do? We... With ignorance, with no knowledge, whatever you do, it is foolish. As there are... Sometimes they divide, four classes of men: lazy intelligent, active intelligent, and lazy fool and active fool. The active fool is fourth-class because whatever he'll do, it is foolish. So result will not be very good. Active fool. So lazy fool is better than the active fool.

Just like the monkey. It is active fool. In your country, in the Western country, you don't see many monkeys. But in India, there are many monkeys. As soon as a monkey will come, he will create some mischief. He's very busy, jumping here, there, here, here, there, but always creating mischief. So modern civilization... And the Darwin's theory is that they have come from monkey. (laughter) So they are also doing like that, jumping like monkey, this way, that way, this way, that way, but always creating mischief.

Srimad-Bhagavatam Lectures

Foolishly active is more dangerous than less active. We should not be lazy and sleepy, at the same time not foolishly active.
Lecture on SB 1.2.20 -- Vrndavana, October 31, 1972:

Sleeping is very dangerous. It is to be understood that I am under the clutches of māyā, the more we sleep, because the symptom of tamo-guṇa is laziness and sleep. This is the symptom of tamo-guṇa, laziness and sleeping. And symptoms of rajo-guṇa—very active, but just like monkey. Monkeys are very active, but all injurious. Wherever they will sit, they "Gata-gata-gat-gat-gat." Not a single moment they are inactive, but all foolishness. That is passion. And goodness means knowledge. So in the previous verse it is described how to come to the platform of goodness. When one comes to the platform of goodness, then he becomes prasanna-manasa, because he is not attacked by the modes of ignorance and passion, means laziness, sleep and foolishly active. Foolishly active is more dangerous than less active. Because if one is dangerous, it is better not to become very much active, because... Just like this monkey. You will find always very active, but nobody likes them. As soon as a monkey comes, everyone drives them away: "Get out! Get out! Get out!"

Therefore we should not be lazy and sleepy, at the same time not foolishly active. We must come to the real standard of life, goodness. Then we can begin our devotional service.

This modern world, people are very active, but they're foolishly active, in the ignorance and passion.
Lecture on SB 1.2.24 -- Los Angeles, August 27, 1972:

So foolish activity has no meaning. Without brain, simply active, that is dangerous. Sober activity is required. Just like a high-court judge. He is paid very lump sum, money, but he's sitting on his chair and simply thinking. The others may think that "We are working so hard, we are not getting so big salary, and this man is getting so big salary. He's sitting only." Because foolish activity has no value. It is dangerous. So this modern world, they very active, but they're foolishly active, in the ignorance and passion, rajas tamas. Therefore there is confusion activity. Foolish activity, there is accident. Sober activity required. Because, just like unless you come to the platform of fire, you cannot utilize the material things. Fire is required. Similarly, to make your life successful, there is gradual evolution from aquatics to plant life, plant life to insect life, insect life to reptiles, reptiles to bird's life, then beast life, then human life, then civilized life.

In this world there are two guṇas-rajas and tamas, ignorance and foolishly active. Foolish active is very dangerous. So at the present moment they're very active, but they're all foolish. Therefore the world is in danger.
Lecture on SB 1.15.30 -- Los Angeles, December 8, 1973:

Arjuna said, yathā..., saṅgrāma-mūrdhani, kāla-karma-tamo-ruddham. This nice instruction of Bhagavad-gītā becomes choked up by the time, kāla. The time, you know, everyone, time's business is to destroy. You construct very nice house-ten years or, say, five years after, you have to again replace it because the time has destroyed it, so many things. The time..., time destroys. This is the business of time, kāla. And karma, our karma, because we are always engaged in sinful activities, karma. Kāla, karma, and tamas, ignorance. Ignorance. Tamas means darkness, and the symptom of tamo-guṇa is laziness and sleep. Those who are lazy and sleeping, you must know he's under the influence of tamo-guṇa. And rajo-guṇa, always acting foolishly. Just like these people are running. They're rajo-guṇa. But actually in this world there are two guṇas-rajas and tamas, ignorance and foolishly active. Foolish active is very dangerous. There are four classes: lazy intelligent, busy intelligent, lazy foolish, and active foolish. The active foolish is a fourth-class man. So at the present moment they're very active, but they're all foolish. Therefore the world is in danger. Active foolishness. Foolish, if he stops, he does not work, it is better. But as soon as he becomes active he becomes more dangerous.

Conversations and Morning Walks

1973 Conversations and Morning Walks

Gap of understanding because the basic principle is wrong, because everyone is fool. They are trying to advance in knowledge, active foolish, fourth class men.
Morning Walk -- December 9, 1973, Los Angeles:

Svarūpa Dāmodara: There is a gap of understanding.

Prabhupāda: Gap of understanding because the basic principle is wrong, because everyone is fool. And they are trying to understand things with their foolish background. There is the wrong. They are trying to be advanced in knowledge on the foolish background. They do not accept that, that they are foolish rascals. And they are trying to advance in knowledge, active foolish, fourth class men. Their background is wrong. No scientist, no politician, no philosophers, at the present moment, believe in this, that there is soul, and the soul is transmigrating from one body... Nobody believes it. So their whole background is foolish. So their so-called advancement must be all foolish. They're all fools, rascals, animals.

Active foolishness. They remain foolish, but still, they are active. That means they are simply creating dangerous position.
Morning Walk -- December 17, 1973, Los Angeles:

Svarūpa Dāmodara: It is better than doing something than doing nothing.

Prabhupāda: Yes. That dog also doing, jumping, always. "Yes, we get... Bow! Bow! Bow! Ra, ra, ra, ra!" That kind of... Active business. What is called? Active foolishness. They remain foolish, but still, they are active. That means they are simply creating dangerous position. That's all. Jagataḥ ahitāḥ. It is said in the Bhagavad-gītā. These demons, their progress means only for the mischief of the world. That's all. That is demonic progress. Kṣayāya jagato... For the destruction of the world and for mischievous condition of the world, their progress. Is it not? Kṣayāya jagataḥ ahitāḥ. Kṣayāya means "for destruction and for mischievous condition." Therefore, despite all advancement of so-called scientific knowledge, the world becoming more and more in dangerous and destructive condition.

1974 Conversations and Morning Walks

The lazy foolish are less dangerous than the active foolish.
Morning Walk -- January 5, 1974, Los Angeles:

Prajāpati: You want us to be drunkards on the holy name, and be like those...

Prabhupāda: Yes, yes. There is eight kinds of transcendental transformation... (pause) (devotees chant japa) (break)

Prajāpati: ...foolish play tennis, and the lazy foolish they play golf. (Prabhupāda laughs) (break)

Prabhupāda: ...less dangerous than the active foolish.

Facts about "Foolishly active"RDF feed
Compiled byLaksmipriya + and Jayaram +
Completed sectionsALL +
Date of first entry21 December 8 +
Date of last entry16 December 9 +
Total quotes8 +
Total quotes by sectionBG: 0 +, SB: 1 +, CC: 0 +, OB: 0 +, Lec: 4 +, Conv: 3 + and Let: 0 +