Interviewer: Well, would you say that, agree with those who say that in the people who have understood, in all the great schools of thought they have come to approximately, at least and sometimes almost, identical conclusions. The thinking of the great mystics in all religions have been in essential agreement.
Prabhupāda: The thing is that religion is a different thing. Religion is a kind of faith. You may have your faith in a certain type of procedure; I may have a certain type of procedure. That is different thing. Suppose you are now Christian. You may change your faith to Mohammedanism. But you as person, you do not change. Your faith may change. Similarly, we are concerned with consciousness.
Interviewer: Yes, but so have all of the great teachers been concerned with consciousness. It's a question of whether or not it's achieved. I presume that's why you work at this.
Prabhupāda: Yes. But thing is that there are two processes for understanding the Absolute Truth. One is ascending process, and one is descending process. We accept that descending process. Ascending process means trying to understand the Absolute Truth by dint of one's limited knowledge. Our knowledge... However I may be great, my senses are imperfect. You see? I cannot understand the sun, although I see every day sun, without understanding the sun as it is from authoritative books. Simply by seeing, by, simply by sense perception, we cannot understand. Now, this machine, simply by seeing, I cannot understand. But if I hear from authorities that "This is this; this is that," that understanding is right. Similarly, Absolute Truth cannot be understood by mental speculation, however a great thinker he may be. It must be understood from the authorities. So that... We follow that principle. We try to understand Absolute Truth from the lips of the Absolute Truth, not otherwise. That is the difference.