So less intelligent class of men, they cannot understand Kṛṣṇa. Therefore śāstra says, ataḥ śrī-kṛṣṇa-nāmādi na bhaved grāhyam indriyaiḥ (CC Madhya 17.136). These indriya, these material senses, cannot speculate to understand the Supreme Personality of Godhead. That is not possible. Śrama eva hi kevalam (SB 1.2.8). That is simply laboring, wasting time. Kṛṣṇa should be understood as Kṛṣṇa says. He can explain Himself. Nobody can explain.
Collaborate with us to invoke and fully manifest Srila Prabhupada's presence
Speculating (Lectures, BG)
Bhagavad-gita As It Is Lectures
So ordinary man cannot understand. Therefore they interpret foolishly, speculate, and demonstrate their rascaldom. That's all. Even big, big scholars. So they cannot understand because they are not devotee. It is meant for the devotee. This whole Bhagavad-gītā is a transaction between God and His devotee.
Modern scientists, they theorize that "It may be like this. It may be like that," but that is not perfect knowledge. So if you speculate with your imperfect senses, what is the value of that knowledge? It may be, I mean to say, partial knowledge, but that is not perfect knowledge. Therefore our process of receiving knowledge is to receive it from the perfect person. And therefore we are receiving knowledge from Kṛṣṇa, Bhagavān, the most perfect, and therefore our knowledge is perfect.
There are five karmendriya and five sensory organs and working organs, ten, and the mind is the chief. So mind is also considered as one of the senses, the chief senses. You see? So because it is sense, it is imperfect. So by mental speculation we cannot have a into right conclusion, by mental speculation. Those are simply speculating on mind, they can make some progress to a certain extent, but they cannot reach the ultimate goal. It is not possible by mental speculation; neither it is possible by direct evidence. The only, only possible evidence is authority, authority.
Just like if a child asks his mother that "Who is my father?" now the mother says, "Here is your father." Now, if the child says, "I don't believe it," so he has no other source of knowledge. Except the mother's version, that "Here is your father," he has no other alternative to know who is father. It is such a thing that neither he can imagine, speculate, "Oh, he may be my father, he may be my father, he may be my father." Lots of father he can gather. That is not possible. And neither it is possible for direct perception. The only possibility is the mother's evidence. Similarly, as the mother is authority for the child, similarly, the śruti, the Vedas, they are called mother, mother of knowledge.
One way is ascending process, one process is descending process. Just like on the roof there is some sound. Now we are here, we are not on the roof, we may conjecture or theorize what is that sound. Somebody will say some cat must be there, somebody will say that some man must be there. In this way, we can go on speculate. This is also one process. This is called ascending process. And descending process means if there is one person on the roof, he says, "This sound is due to this," then that is also perfect knowledge. So we get knowledge from the higher authorities, that is perfect knowledge and that is easier.
So this is a great science. Unfortunately, the so-called scientist, he has no idea. He does not know. They simply say that "We do not know, but we are trying to know." That's all right. But here is the knowledge, perfect knowledge, in the Bhagavad-gītā. Why don't you take it? That they will not take. They'll go on speculating and promise falsely that "In future we shall be able to inject some matter within the body and the body will again become alive." That is their dream.
So we cannot estimate by direct perception, even in this material world, and what to speak of the spiritual world. Not (possible.) Panthās tu koṭi-śata-vatsara-sampragamyo vāyor athāpi manaso muni-puṅgavānām (Bs. 5.34). By mental, muni-puṅga means mental speculation. You can go on mental speculating, but if you do even for many hundreds and thousand of years, it is not possible to calculate. You have to accept this truth through the śāstra; otherwise, it is not possible.
Therefore to understand the Supreme Personality of Godhead, it requires enough pious activities. In Bhagavad-gītā it is said, bahūnāṁ janmanām ante (BG 7.19). After speculating in the impersonal philosophical way, when one is mature, bahūnāṁ janmanām ante jñānavān, when he's actually wise,... So long he cannot understand that the Supreme Absolute Truth is person, sac-cid-ānanda-vigraha... (Bs. 5.1). brahmeti paramātmeti bhagavān iti śabdyate. Bhagavān. That... vadanti tat tattva-vidas tattvaṁ yaj jñānam advayam (SB 1.2.11). This is statement in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavata: "Those who know the Absolute Truth, they know that Brahman, Paramātmā and Bhagavān, they are one. It is different phases of understanding only."
There are many theories and philosophical speculation all over the world about understanding the soul. Therefore Kṛṣṇa is concluding that "Somebody's explaining wonderfully, somebody is hearing wonderfully, but even after hearing and speaking, it remains a mystery, and less intelligent person cannot understand it." That is the fact. There are so many theories. Therefore we have to accept the reality from the authority. By theorizing, by speculating, we cannot come into any decision. I may be very good logician. You may be greater logician. So you can defeat my logic. I can defeat your logic. So what is the conclusion?
Perhaps you know Śrī Aurobindo. He's, he's also speculated very nicely on the mental platform. Mental platform cannot give us the actual freedom or the happiness. Therefore Lord says, "One should give up all mental speculation and should be satisfied in the understanding that 'I am consciousness, and there is Supreme Consciousness, and I am subordinate to the Supreme Consciousness. Therefore let me dovetail my consciousness with the Supreme Consciousness.'
Arjuna mentally speculated in the beginning that "Whether I should take up this fighting or not?" But at the ultimate issue he gave up his mental speculation and agreed with the Lord that "Yes, I shall fight."
So our preaching, is this Kṛṣṇa consciousness, that people are searching after God, speculating throughout the whole life, but here Kṛṣṇa is canvassing, "Here I am." "No." Avajānanti māṁ mūḍhāḥ (BG 9.11). God is canvassing, "Here I am," and these people are searching after God.
Somebody is addicted to work very hard. Somebody is addicted to speculate philosophically. So for the speculator, Kṛṣṇa says, bahūnāṁ janmanām ante jñānavān māṁ prapadyate (BG 7.19). The persons who are addicted to speculative knowledge, after many, many births, he comes to the understanding: vāsudevaḥ sarvam iti (BG 7.19), "Vāsudeva, Kṛṣṇa, is everything."
As you see that within this planet there are innu..., within this universe there numberless planets, you cannot count even. So similarly, there are innumerable universes, and all these universes together is within God. So the conception of God cannot be attained by our mental speculation. It is not possible. If you speculate what is God, you cannot understand.
It is said, "My dear Lord, one who is Your devotee," athāpi te deva padāmbuja-dvaya-prasāda-leśānugṛhīta eva hi, "one who is Your devotee, one who has got Your mercy by worshiping Your lotus feet, he can understand. Others, they may go on speculating for many millions of years, still it is not possible to know God." And in the Bhagavad-gītā also Kṛṣṇa said that "Because you are My devotee, therefore I am revealing unto you My nature." Therefore conclusion is that you have to become devotee, then you can understand what is God.
Imagination, by discussion amongst your friends, but that is not perfect knowledge. But somehow or other, if you make friendship with that big man, and if he tells you that "My position is like this," then you understand very easily. You cannot speculate. By speculating, you cannot understand God. That is not possible. He's so great, our speculating power is very poor.
A frog within the well. You know, well, a three-feet circumference, and there is a frog. Another frog friend comes and informs the frog in the well, "My dear friend, today I have seen a very big span of water, Pacific Ocean." So the frog in the well, he considers that Pacific Ocean may be four feet. "My water is three feet, so Pacific Ocean may be four feet." So, he replied to his friend, "Is that Pacific Ocean four feet?" "No, no it is very big." "All right, five feet?" "No, no, it is very big." "All right, six feet!" (laughter) So in this way, if we speculate about God—one feet more—God may be little stronger than me, or richer than me, little. Or more rich, more rich. In this way you cannot speculate. What will he know, the frog, about the Pacific Ocean. Similarly, all our philosophical speculation about God, is the speculation of the frog within the well.
Kṛṣṇa is also historical, at the same time, He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. These things cannot be understood unless one is a devotee. Therefore in the previous verse it has been said, bhakto 'si. The mystery of Bhagavad-gītā can be opened, disclosed, to the devotees, not to the nondevotees. The nondevotees may speculate in their specific platform of activities, as politician or as mundane philosopher or mundane scientist, but that is not the fact. The fact should be learned from the devotees of Kṛṣṇa.
Bahūnāṁ janmanām ante (BG 7.19). But he's now mentally speculating to find out the Absolute Truth, but when his knowledge will be mature, bahūnāṁ janmanām, after many, many births of speculation, bahūnāṁ janmanām ante jñānavān māṁ prapadyate, when he is actually in knowledge, he surrenders unto the Supreme Lord, vāsudevaḥ sarvam iti: (BG 7.19) "Oh, Lord Kṛṣṇa, Vāsudeva, Vāsudeva is everything." Sa mahātmā sudurlabhaḥ: "Such kind of great soul is very rare."
Anyābhilāṣitā-śūnyaṁ jñāna-karmādy-anāvṛtam (CC Madhya 19.167). Even we should not speculate so-called knowledge. What kind of knowledge we can get? We are deficient, imperfect in so many ways. So what is the use of speculating, of our knowledge?
Maybe there may be one or two persons who can meditate. The real meditation means to think of Kṛṣṇa. Man-manā bhava mad-bhakto mad-yājī māṁ namaskuru (BG 18.65). That is real meditation. So in this way, if we engage our life, that means bhakti-yoga, then Kṛṣṇa reveals, ataḥ sri-kṛṣṇa-nāmādi na bhaved grāhyam indriyaiḥ (CC Madhya 17.136). If you simply speculate, tax your senses to understand Kṛṣṇa by so-called scholarship, that will not help you. Sevonmukhe hi jihvādau. You engage your tongue in the service of the Lord, then He'll reveal.
So try to understand Kṛṣṇa on this principle, as Kṛṣṇa says. Don't imagine, don't speculate. Then your life will be perfect.
In the Padma Purāṇa it is said that you cannot understand about the form, name, quality, paraphernalia of God with these material senses. Ataḥ śrī-kṛṣṇa-nāmādi na bhaved grāhyam indriyaiḥ (CC Madhya 17.136). By your sense speculation, because your senses are imperfect, how you can speculate on the supreme perfect? That is not possible. Then how it is possible? Sevonmukhe hi jihvādau. If you train your senses, if you purify your senses, that purified sense will help you to see God.
So athāpi te deva padāmbuja-dvaya-prasāda-leśānugṛhīta... jānāti tattvaṁ bhagavan-mahimno na cānya eko 'pi ciraṁ vicinvan (SB 10.14.29). Therefore it is said, "My dear Lord, a person who has received a little favor from You, he can understand You very quickly. And others who are trying to understand You by the ascending process, they may go on speculating for millions of years, they will never understand." They will never understand. They will come to the point of frustration and confusion. "Oh, God is zero." That's all, finished.
So to become liberated means to stand on the Brahman platform. Conditioned soul, we are at the present moment we are on the platform of this bodily concept of life or sensual platform. Those who are a little above, they are on the mental platform, speculating, philosophers. And above this platform there is Brahman platform.
Devotee: "One who is deviated from the transcendental path. Arjuna is inquisitive to know the results of deviation from the path of self-realization."
Prabhupāda: Yes, this is very important question. That one may begin practicing any sort of yoga, either the eightfold yoga system of the jñāna-yoga system, means speculating philosophically, and the bhakti-yoga system, devotional service. But if one fails to complete the yoga system, what is the result. That is very important question and it is put by Arjuna and Kṛṣṇa will answer it.
And the fourth defect is that our senses are imperfect. Therefore all knowledge that we receive, that is imperfect knowledge. A man may speculate, but he may speculate with his mind. That's all. But his mind is imperfect. However he may speculate, he'll produce something nonsense, that's all. Because his mind is imperfect.
Everyone is speculating. The scientist, philosopher, everyone is speculating, just to show himself that he has grown very learned, he can put some theory.
"When a person will give up this nonsense habit of speculation..." Jñāne prayāsam udapāsya. He must become submissive. One should not pose himself that he knows something, he can speculate something, he can invent something. Just like the so-called scientists, they are simply speculating and wasting labor. Nothing can be done by you. Everything is already arranged. You cannot change.
If you say, "Oh, my dear God, please come here. I shall see You," so God is not like that, that He will carry your order. You must carry His order. Then God realization. God says: "You surrender," sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja (BG 18.66). That process, you'll learn God. Not that "Oh, I shall know God. I have got good intelligence, speculate." No.
You cannot go back to home, back to Godhead, by your own speculation. That is not possible. Ciraṁ vicinvan. You can go on speculating to become one with God. That is another thing. But if you actually want to know God and see God, then as Kṛṣṇa says, mām eva ye prapadyante māyām etāṁ taranti te: (BG 7.14) simply surrender to Kṛṣṇa and māyā will give you no more trouble. You can see Kṛṣṇa. This is the process.
You surrender and, in the past, whatever sinful activities you have done, that is squared up, now account closed. Now you begin a new life, devotional life, and if you stick to the principle as it is instructed, that do not have illicit sex life, do not have intoxicants, do not eat meat, do not play gambling, speculate, you promise before Kṛṣṇa and before the spiritual master, before the Vaiṣṇavas, so many witnesses, and if you violate, then you can understand what you are doing. You promise with..., before the Deity. Kṛṣṇa is not different, so when the initiation takes place we promise so many things. But if we do not follow, if we do not keep our promise, that is a great fault.
So when we are thinking, "I have become a puruṣa, enjoyer," that is māyā. That is māyā. (break) ...as woman or man, but actually, every one of us, woman, prakṛti. Every one of us. And every one of us are thinking as man. Even the woman. Man means enjoyer. So everyone is thinking enjoyer, "I am enjoyer." And this is called māyā. And about the gopīs, it is better not to speculate. The speculator's writing has no value. Gopīs, they are pleasure potency expansion of Kṛṣṇa.
In the Bhagavad-gītā also, you won't find Kṛṣṇa is teaching anything about His relationship with gopīs. Just like... Try to understand. This is not the subject matter for a person who is conditioned; neither it is a subject matter to be discussed and speculated by the conditioned soul.
If you want to understand God, it is better to understand from God Himself. Instead of speculating what is God, better to understand God from the words of God.
The Absolute Truth is the ultimate truth, tattva. Tattva means Absolute Truth. So those who are aware of the Absolute Truth, they say that Absolute Truth is one, but He's realized in three angle of vision, namely, Brahman, Paramātmā, and Bhagavān. Those who are trying to speculate and understand the Absolute Truth, they can realize up to impersonal Brahman.
Just suppose we are speculating... Very great scientists are speculating about the nature of the moon from here. But they are speculating. They have not come to any conclusion. So you go on speculating, which you have no experience. You go on speculating, but the real nature of that thing will never come to you.
So our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, we claim that we have got perfect knowledge of everything because we are taking knowledge from the perfect person—Kṛṣṇa. Evaṁ paramparā-prāptam imaṁ rājarṣayo viduḥ (BG 4.2). And that is the real process. If you simply speculate to arrive at the conclusion, inductive process.
So although we cannot perceive the transcendental nature of the Supreme Lord, His name, His fame... Simply by speculating that what is the name of God, he cannot understand what is the name of God. Simply by speculating what is the form of God, it is not possible to understand. But as soon as you become situated in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, sevonmukhe hi jihvādau svayam eva sphuraty adaḥ (Brs. 1.2.234). If you engage yourself in this Kṛṣṇa consciousness business, then gradually God will reveal Himself before you.
So we want enjoyment, but this atheism or this voidness, this impersonalism, they have created such an atmosphere that we are simply speculating, but we are addicted to these material enjoyments. That is not the process. Here it is said, puruṣaḥ sa paraḥ pārtha bhaktyā labhyas tv ananyayā. If you accept this principle of Kṛṣṇa consciousness, the devotional path, and if you worship that Supreme Personality of Godhead, then you can have the spiritual realization and you prepare yourself and you become detached from this material enjoyment. Your life becomes sublime.
How can I attain that state? Bhaktyā. Not by speculating, but bhakti. You have to submit. You have to render transcendental loving service. That is the way.
Even in the warfield, you can hear from the authoritative source. So that was the process of acquiring knowledge, hearing. Hearing means receiving the knowledge, not manufacturing. There are two process of knowledge. There are some persons who think, "Oh, why shall I hear from him? Oh, I can think. I can speculate. I can manufacture something new of my own group." These are nonsense. This is not Vedic process.
Now, so far knowledge is concerned, here is a key packet. If you want to make research who has made this packet, who has discovered it, in which country first it was introduced, in what material it is made, oh, you can write volumes of books. You can speculate in any damn thing, and you can write volumes of books. That does not mean that you are a man of knowledge.
You cannot speculate. Is there any psychologist who can say that how many different types of thinking, feeling, willings are there? No, they cannot say. But we must know from Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, that these eight million four hundred thousand species or forms of life are there because there are eight million four hundred thousand different types of desires, exactly eight million four hundred thousand.
So from this version we can understand, in the sun planet there are living entities, and the chief man, or chief demigod, is the sun-god, whose name is Vivasvān. So his body must be fiery; otherwise how he can live there? And the inhabitants there also. So we are thinking from here that nobody can live there, but that's not the fact. We are calculating via our own experience. Therefore we cannot have perfect knowledge by speculating our experience. It is not possible. We must go to a person whose experience is beyond our experience. That is called guru.
That is confirmed in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. Bhaktim udasya te vibho kliśyanti ye kevala-bodha-labdhaye. Kevala-bodha-labdhaye, simply to understand. And you can take any insignificant thing, and if you want to speculate upon it, you can write volumes of books, but what is the use of such knowledge? Simply waste of time.
So therefore we do not know what kind of change is going there. It may be very nice change, or it may be very bad change. So therefore it is very dangerous position. It is very dangerous. You do not know. You have to know. You can know that if you follow the shastric injunctions in the Bhagavad-gītā. You do now know "what kind of body I am going to get next life," but you can know from Bhagavad-gītā. You cannot speculate, but you can know from Bhagavad-gītā.
A speculator cannot give you truth. That is not possible. By speculation you cannot say, "Two plus two equal to five." That is not science. "Two plus two equal to four," that is everywhere. And if you speculate, "No, two plus two equal to five," or "two plus two equal to three," that is not science. So scientific basis means it should be fact, not speculation, mano-dharma. Mano-dharma means speculation.
Simply we have to distribute it properly, as we have heard from our predecessor ācārya. Therefore in the Bhagavad-gītā it is recommended: ācārya upāsanam: "One must approach ācārya." Ācāryavān puruṣo veda. Simply by speculating, by so-called scholarship, it is not possible. It is not possible. One must approach the ācārya. So the ācārya is coming by paramparā system, disciplic succession.