The meaning of this mantra is apavitraḥ pavitro vā. Apavitraḥ means unclean and pavitra means clean. So anyone who may be unclean or clean, it doesn't matter. Apavitraḥ pavitro vā sarvāvasthāṁ gato 'pi vā. Sarva means all. Avastha means condition. "In whatever condition one may be, either unclean or clean," yaḥ, "anyone who," smaret, "remembers," puṇḍarīkākṣam... Puṇḍarīkākṣam means Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa's another name is puṇḍarīkākṣam. Yaḥ smaret puṇḍarīkākṣam, sa: "That person," bahya, "externally," abhyantaram, "internally," śuciḥ, "becomes at once purified." Śrī-viṣṇu śrī-viṣṇu śrī-viṣṇu. Puṇḍarīkākṣam, Kṛṣṇa or Viṣṇu. So this is the remembrance. Śrī-viṣṇu, namaḥ śrī-viṣṇu śrī-viṣṇu.
After many, many births of cultivation of knowledge, when one is perfectly wise, at that time he surrenders. The perfection of acquiring knowledge, or wisdom, is to surrender. So, namaḥ. Namaḥ means "I surrender." And what is your condition? Never mind what is that condition. Apavitraḥ pavitro vā. Apavitraḥ means contaminated, and pavitra means liberated. So we have two conditions. Either... Just like either we are healthy or we are diseased. There is no third condition. Crude example. Similarly, the living entities, they have two conditions. One condition is liberation, another condition is contaminated. Therefore living entity is called marginal, in between contamination and liberation. Either a living entity can be contaminated or liberated. There is no third condition. Therefore this mantra says, apavitraḥ pavitro vā. Either contaminated or liberated, it doesn't matter. Oṁ namo apavitraḥ pavitro, sarvāvasthām. Sarva means all; avasthām means condition.
Practically in every initiation ceremony, apavitraḥ pavitro vā, namaḥ. Namaḥ means surrendering. Namāmi: "I surrender unto You. He Kṛṣṇa, I am surrendering to You." And apavitraḥ pavitro vā. Apavitraḥ means contaminated, and pavitra means liberated. So in either stage, either in the material, contaminated stage or in transcendental, liberated stage, apavitraḥ pavitro vā sarvāvasthām, in any situation... Yaḥ smaret puṇḍarīkākṣam. Sarvāvasthāṁ gato 'pi vā. In any circumstances, if somebody remembers, smaret, remembers puṇḍarīkākṣam... Puṇḍarīka akṣam. Akṣam means eyes. One who is lotus-eyed, Kṛṣṇa or Viṣṇu, Puṇḍarīkākṣam, anyone who remembers always or at anytime, Kṛṣṇa, yaḥ smaret puṇḍarīkākṣam, sa, that person... Bahya. Bahya means externally, and abhyantaram means internally. Bahyābhyantaraṁ śuciḥ. Śuci means brāhmaṇa, or śuci means completely cleansed. The brāhmaṇa means completely clean. The brahminical qualification is first of all cleanliness. Satya śaucaṁ śamo dama titikṣa ārjavam, jñānaṁ vijñānam āstikyaṁ brahma-karma svabhāva-jam (BG 18.42). To become brāhmaṇa means satyam saucam. First thing is truthful, and next, śaucam, very cleansed, internally and externally. Externally we can cleanse ourself by soap and water. That is necessary. Daily we should take bath with soap and water and oil.
So let us begin our work now. Who will be initiated? You are both be initiated? (break) Remembers. Yaḥ smaret. Smaret means remembers. Whom remembers? Puṇḍarīkākṣam, the lotus-eyed Kṛṣṇa or Viṣṇu. Puṇḍarīkākṣam. Sa, that person, bahya means externally, abhyantaram means internally, śuciḥ. Sa bahyābhyantaram. Apavitraḥ pavitro vā. Apavitraḥ means contaminated, and pavitra means liberated, without any contamination. Infected or disinfected. So in the material world we are all infected. This is the disinfecting process, simply remembering Kṛṣṇa, yaḥ smaret puṇḍarīkākṣam. So this initiation is to teach how to remember always Viṣṇu and Kṛṣṇa. This Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare/ Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare, as soon as we hear, we immediately remember Kṛṣṇa, His speech in the Bhagavad-gītā, His form, His name, His quality, His pastimes. Everything comes. So we have to practice that. Then we remain always uncontaminated.
So one has to become submissive. Apavitraḥ pavitro vā. Apavitraḥ means contaminated. This material world is contamination, infection of the spirit soul. We are suffering... Just like in ordinary diseased condition we suffer on account of infection, similarly the..., one who is intelligent, he should understand that this conditional life is suffering. One should not be foolishly very optimistic, that "I am very well situated. I am enjoying life." This is ignorance. Nobody is enjoying life in this material world; everyone is suffering. Saṁsāra-dāvānala-līḍha-loka: ** this world is just like blazing forest fire; so everyone is suffering, contaminated. This is the sign, symptoms of contamination, that suffering, threefold miseries-ādhyātmika, ādhibhautika, ādhidaivika. But as the animals, they suffer, but they do not understand, this is animal life. The animal is being taken to the slaughterhouse, but still he's happy. This is animal life. So when one cannot understand his sufferings of this material contamination, his life is animal life. He knows that he's suffering, but he's trying to cover the suffering by some nonsense means: by forgetfulness, by drinking, by intoxication, by this, by that. He's aware of his suffering, but he wants to cover his suffering in a nonsense way.
When we utter this word namaḥ, means "I surrender." Anyone, I say namaskāra, namaskāra means the surrendering process: "I accept the surrendering process." So when we surrender to Kṛṣṇa or His representative, then apavitraḥ. Apavitraḥ means contaminated and pavitraḥ means purified. So one may be in contaminated stage or purified stage. It doesn't matter. One who... Yaḥ smaret puṇḍarīkākṣam, one who remembers Kṛṣṇa, the lotus-eyed... Puṇḍarīkākṣam means lotus-eyed Kṛṣṇa. So bahya. Bahya means externally, and abhyantara, internally. Bahyābhyantara-śuciḥ. Śuciḥ means purified. And another meaning of śuciḥ is brāhmaṇa. A brāhmaṇa means purified. So those who are going to be sacred-threaded today, they should remember that they are being accepted as śuciḥ, as brāhmaṇa. After chanting process for the six months or one year, it is supposed that he has already become purified. Now he should be recognized that he is purified. So this sacred thread means recognition.
The purpose of this mantra, apavitraḥ pavitro vā... Apavitraḥ means contaminated, infected, and pavitra means purified. So the mantras says, "Either one is in contaminated stage or purified stage..." Apavitraḥ pavitro vā sarvāvasthām. Sarva means all, avastha means circumstances. "In all circumstances, in whatever circumstances one may be, either in contaminated stage or purified stage," yaḥ smaret, "anyone who remembers Puṇḍarīkākṣam..." Puṇḍarīkākṣam means Kṛṣṇa or Viṣṇu. Puṇḍarīka-akṣam, lotus-eyed. So Lord Viṣṇu's eyes are just like lotus petals, so He's called puṇḍarīkākṣam. So such person who remembers, chants the name of the lord, puṇḍarīkākṣam, sa bahya... Bahya means external, and internal, abhyantaram, śuciḥ. Śuciḥ means purified. Śrī viṣṇu śrī viṣṇu śrī viṣṇu. So simply by remembering the holy name of the Lord, Viṣṇu, one is purified in any stage of life. That is a fact. It is said, there is a Bengali verse which says, eka kṛṣṇa nāme yata pāpa hare, ai haya tati pāpa karibare nare (?). "By chanting once the holy name of Kṛṣṇa, the sinful man can vanquish so much volumes of sinful activities, reaction, that he's unable to perform." A sinful man is very expert to commit sinful activities, but the holy name of Kṛṣṇa is so strong that he will be unable to commit so much sins as can be extinguished simply by uttering once the name of Lord Viṣṇu or Kṛṣṇa. This is a fact. But unfortunately, we, by chanting, vanquish all kinds of sinful activities. That's all right.