Nowadays a fashion has become, daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. This is nonsense. What is the daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā? Why you are taking care of the daridras? If you have got such vision, such outlook, that in everyone's heart... That is a fact. Everyone's heart there is Nārāyaṇa. There is no denial. Īśvaraḥ sarva-bhūtānāṁ hṛd-deśe 'rjuna tiṣṭhati: (BG 18.61) "Īśvara, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is situated in everyone's heart." If you have got such vision—you are seeing in everyone the Supreme Nārāyaṇa—then why should you designate only the daridras? Others also, you should see dog-nārāyaṇa. You should see kukkura-nārāyaṇa. Why daridra-nārāyaṇa?
- 1 Srimad-Bhagavatam
- 2 Lectures
- 3 Conversations and Morning Walks
- 4 Correspondence
SB Canto 7
As mentioned above, it is recommended that everyone distribute prasāda, considering every living being a part and parcel of the Supreme Lord. Even in feeding the poor, one should distribute prasāda. In Kali-yuga there is a scarcity of food almost every year, and thus philanthropists spend lavishly to feed the poor. For this they invent the term daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. This is prohibited. One should distribute sumptuous prasāda, considering everyone a part of the Supreme Lord, but one should not juggle words to make a poor man Nārāyaṇa. Everyone is related to the Supreme Lord, but one should not mistakenly think that because one is related to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he has become the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Nārāyaṇa. Such a Māyāvāda philosophy is extremely dangerous, especially for a devotee. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu has therefore strictly forbidden us to associate with Māyāvādī philosophers. Māyāvādi-bhāṣya śunile haya sarva-nāśa: if one associates with the Māyāvāda philosophy, his devotional life is doomed.
Bhagavad-gita As It Is Lectures
Fifty years ago, when I first came to Bombay, at that time I was gṛhastha. I saw there were persons lying down care of footpath, and fifty years after, we are seeing the same thing is going on. No change. There is a class of men who must lie down care of footpath. There are so many institutions, daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. But why there are daridras still? That means you cannot change. It is not possible. It is not possible. Just like a man who has done something criminal and he is in prison. Can you take him out? It will be another criminal action. If you try to take him away from the prisonhouse by some means, then you'll be punished and he'll be punished, both. This is the law state. Similarly, how you can surpass the stringent laws of nature and the laws of God? That is not possible.
This word we learned from our Guru Mahārāja: "extended selfishness." Just like I love myself for my sense gratification, and then I extend it to my son. I am gratifying my senses. I have got my wife. And to get my son another wife... The principle is the same. Then my grandchildren, then my great-grandchildren. Or, not only limited with the family, then society, then community, then nationally, then internationally. But they are all extended selfishness. Yes. Without knowing what is the real self-interest. Therefore we find so many faults in such welfare activities. In... They are opening hospitals for the human beings, daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā, but the poor goats and cows, daridra-nārāyaṇa—they are also daridra-nārāyaṇa according to the definition—but they are being killed. For one daridra-nārāyaṇa, another daridra-nārāyaṇa is being killed.
So this process, this changing of, transformation... To work for Kṛṣṇa's sense gratification and to work for one's own sense gratification, this transformation change, this changing process, is called bhakti. Process is the same, simply account should be changed. Na te viduḥ svārtha-gatiṁ hi viṣṇuṁ durāśayā ye bahir-artha-māninaḥ (SB 7.5.31). Everyone is working, daridra-nārāyaṇa sevā or this community sevā, the country sevā, nationally sevā, this sevā, that sevā ... Nobody is for Kṛṣṇa sevā. Nobody will be happy, sir. Go on with your so-called sevā. It will never be successful. You will be more and more entangled in diseased condition. Karmaṇā daiva-netreṇa jantur deha upapattaye (SB 3.31.1). Simply by your so-called activities you will be entangled in the law of karma. And according to your karma, you will get a different type of body and you will live for some time, again you will die, again you will get body, again you will... And you do not know what kind of body you are going to get. This is the entanglement.
Our, this material sufferings, why? Due to our sinful activities. Sinful activities mean anything you do without any purpose to serve to Kṛṣṇa, that is sinful. That is sinful. Not that "In the material calculation this is very good work, the opening of hospital or this or that, very good work. And Deity worship and going to the temple is bogus." You may think like that. But that, your opening of hospital is sinful. That is going on nowadays. One becomes very great philanthropist, rejecting... They say, "What is the use of this temple worship?" The daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. Nārāyaṇa has now become daridra. Formerly Nārāyaṇa was husband of the goddess of fortune. And now he has become daridra. So serve this Nārāyaṇa. This, they're manufacturing, concoction. This is not... That means sinful activities. Because he has manufactured something, that is sinful.
The present scarcity of foodstuff means everybody is engaged in the city, producing bolts and nuts. Who is producing food grain? This is the solution of economic problem. Annād bhavanti bhūtāni. Therefore we are trying to engage our men to produce their own food. Be self-sufficient so that these rascals may see that how one can live very peacefully, eating the food grains and milk, and chant Hare Kṛṣṇa. This is our mission. We don't deny this food. They are after daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā, but why daridra-nārāyaṇa? Why not chief Nārāyaṇa, or the rich Nārāyaṇa? Everyone should be engaged-Bhagavat-prasādam. We don't make any distinction, daridra-nārāyaṇa or rich Nārāyaṇa, dhanī-nārāyaṇa. Everyone, you come on. Take prasādam.
The Māyāvādī, being disgusted with this material world... Brahma..., jagan mithyā. Jagan mithyā. That's, that's all right. Then Brahma satyam. That is theoretical. If you do not engage yourself as Brahman, then again you'll fall down. Āruhya kṛcchreṇa paraṁ padaṁ tataḥ patanty adhaḥ anādṛta-yuṣmad-aṅghrayaḥ (SB 10.2.32). That you give up disgusting—"This is mithyā"—that's all right. But that is zero. And what is your positive engagement? That they do not know. Therefore, after some time they again come to be positively engaged in opening hospital and daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā and this and that and so many things. Because they could not get any engagement in the positive world.
In the Bhagavad-gītā we don't find anywhere a single line that "You raise funds for," I mean to say, "giving relief to the poor" or "to the suffering." Is there any instruction in Bhagavad-gītā? You have read. Can you find out? But these people, they have become more learned than Kṛṣṇa. In our country, Vivekananda: daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. The whole Ramakrishna Mission is collecting funds only on this rascal plea. One Swami Nikhilananda, he told me "Now the Americans are questioning that you are raising fund for feeding the poor, but when we go to India we see simply poor men. What you are doing with this money?" Actually they are doing nothing. They are collecting money in the name of feeding the poor, and they are living just like royal style, you see, eating all, everything.
Sometimes we do things which I should not have done. But still, because I want money, because I want to gratify my senses, I give service. Even very sinful service I give. But still, neither I am satisfied, neither the master is satisfied. This is the position. Everyone is trying to give, the politicians or any. Just I have given the example: Gandhi throughout the whole life gave service, but there were some persons who were not satisfied. It is not possible. Therefore the sensible man should consider that "What is the use of this service?" Just like this Vivekananda society, their daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. The daridras are lying on the street, but they collect money in the name of serving the poor, and they live very comfortably—big, big belly. You see. All the sannyāsīs are eating and sleeping and doing everything, all nonsense. But they are collecting money. They have no other source. We don't say that we are collecting money for daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā, no. We collect money directly for serving Kṛṣṇa.
Generally sādhu means devotee. Otherwise not sādhu. Sādhavaḥ sādhu-bhūṣaṇāḥ. There is a description of sādhu also. That is suhṛdaḥ sarva-bhūtānām ajāta-śatru sādhava sadhu-bhūṣaṇāḥ titikṣavaḥ kāruṇikām. These are the symptoms of sādhu. Very tolerant and kind, titikṣava-kāruṇikā. And suhṛdaḥ sarva-bhūtānām: and he's friend of all living entities, not that daridra-nārāyaṇa sevā and cow-nārāyaṇa killing. If you have got such vision that Nārāyaṇa is everywhere, why should you distinguish daridra-nārāyaṇa, dhani-nārāyaṇa, cow-nārāyaṇa, goat-nārāyaṇa?
So varieties of life and varieties of position, you cannot change them. That is not possible. So the theory is humanitarianism, daridra-nārāyaṇa-seva... Seva. It is not seva. A poor man, you can have mercy, dayā. That is allowed. Just like we distribute prasādam. That is bāliśeṣu Īśvare tad-adhīneṣu bāliśeṣu dviṣatsu ca, prema-maitrī-kṛpa upekṣā. Kṛpā. Those who are suffering—innocent, they do not know how to get release from the suffering—they are called bāliśa. Just like a child. A child is suffering, he does not know how to get relief; so one should take care. They should be given shelter, they should be given cloth, food. It is the duty of the parents. That is natural. So for the bāliśa, innocent, it is our duty to show them mercy, give them food, give them shelter, give them instruction of Kṛṣṇa consciousness so that he may understand why he is here in this material world, why he is suffering.
So the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is meant for showing mercy to the innocent who are suffering in this material world. That is wanted. It is not daridra-nārāyaṇa seva, that "I am very rich man. I am rich Nārāyaṇa, and therefore I can serve the daridra-nārāyaṇa." There is no question of serving. That is not. No. The fact is everyone is suffering. There is nobody... Because asad-grahāt. Sadā samudvigna-dhiyām asad-grahāt (SB 7.5.5). Anyone within this material..., he is suffering, full of anxieties. Even the birds and beasts, you'll find, they are full of anxiety. Why? Asad-grahāt. Because he accepted this material body, which is asat, which is temporary.
So this kind of sympathy, just like this Rāmakrishna Mission daridra-nārāyaṇa sevā, under the plea of accepting this suffering humanity as Nārāyaṇa and appealing to the compassion of the people... Although they cannot do anything. Actually they are not doing anything but this philosophy is a rubbish philosophy. You cannot do. If you can do anything good to the people, then you can simply awaken them to Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That is the best service. Other service you cannot do.
Therefore many sannyāsīs, they give up the brahma satyaṁ jagan mithyā. I mean to... Māyāvādī sannyāsī. Again they fall down in this mithyā jagat. They come for political work, they come for social work, daridra-nārāyaṇa-seva and this and that. That's all. Because they are not pure. If jagat is mithyā, why you again so much anxious for serving the jagat? This misconception is going on. Everyone asks us that, "Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, why not serve the suffering humanity?" They say always. And what you can do? You are... Simply like a madman you are thinking that you can serve the humanity. You cannot serve the humanity. You have no such power.
So here it is said, ye sādhavaḥ samadṛśaḥ. Samadṛśaḥ. Samadṛśaḥ means equally, equipoised. Not that "I shall simply serve this, my brothers or my community or my society or my nation or the human society." Nowadays there is a hobby. Just like Vivekananda: "daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā," the human society, the poor men. And chāga-nārāyaṇa, the goat nārāyaṇa, they must be killed for this daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. This kind of discrimination of not for the sādhu. He's not a sādhu. Sādhu is equally disposed to all living entities—not only human society; animal society.
This daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā has come under this misunderstanding that "We have to serve God, so when God comes as daridra, then we shall give. When God comes with Lakṣmī, with Sītā, with Rādhārāṇī, no, no, that is not required. We don't want to serve that God. We want to serve when God comes as poor man, as invalid with a stick, and begs. Oh I am so great. I am giving God." This is nonsense. This is not... What God cares for you? But they have conceived that, that "God, although He is great, he becomes a small beggar and begs from me." This is material conception of understanding.
Nectar of Devotion Lectures
There are so many men without shelter, without food. What you have done for them? The Ramakrishna Mission began for daridra-nārāyaṇa sevā. They have got so much big, big buildings, institutions. And why the daridra-nārāyaṇa is lying on the street? What they are doing? Why do they not take the daridra-nārāyaṇas in the big, big building they have got? Their mission is daridra-nārāyaṇa sevā. Why they are not doing that?
The Māyāvāda sannyāsa means karma-tyāga, simply reading Vedānta philosophy, sāṅkhya philosophy, and everything given up. But our Vaiṣṇava philosophy is giving up the wrong thing and accepting the right thing. Side by side. Simply if I give up, it will not stay very long time. If I simply by sentiment give up, brahma satyaṁ jagan mithyā, "This world is false and Brahman is the real, reality," so there are so many sannyāsīs, we see, they give up the so-called mithyā world and come to the Brahman realization by meditation, by meditation, meditation... Then meditation means hospital and school. Because there is no Brahman, there is no reality. So after much meditation, (he) comes to the conclusion that "Now I am a sannyāsī. I must open schools, college and daridra-nārāyaṇa sevā and goat-nārāyaṇa killing." This kind of sannyāsa has no meaning. Daridra-nārāyaṇa sevā. By killing goat nārāyaṇa. Goat is not Nārāyaṇa. Simply daridras are Nārāyaṇa. If you accept one as Nārāyaṇa, why should you not accept the other as Nārāyaṇa?
So Kṛṣṇa, first business is go-brāhmaṇa-hitāya ca, He's the protector of cows and brāhmaṇas. Why? Why He's specially giving? Nowadays it has become a fashion, daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā, to give protection to the daridras. That is good idea. But why you should bring Nārāyaṇa amongst the daridras? Nārāyaṇa is not daridra. Nārāyaṇa is the husband of Lakṣmī, Lakṣmī-Nārāyaṇa. Not only one Lakṣmī, millions of Lakṣmīs. Lakṣmī-sahasra-śata-sambhrama-sevyamānam. Cintāmaṇi-prakara-sadmasu kalpa-vṛkṣa-lakṣāvṛteṣu surabhīr abhipālayantam (Bs. 5.29). Surabhīr abhipālaya. In the transcendental world, in Kṛṣṇaloka, there are..., there that is called goloka.
There are two sides. There are two kinds of people are going. The same man, he is giving charity for feeding poor man or giving relief to the distressed man, but at the same time he's encouraging animal-killing. So what is the ethics? What is the ethical law in these two contradictory activities? One side... Just like our Vivekananda. He is advocating daridra-nārāyaṇa sevā, "Feed the poor," but feed the poor with mother Kālī's prasāda, where poor goats are killed. Just like, another, one side feeding the poor, another side killing the poor goat. So what is the ethic? What is the ethical law in this connection? Just like people open hospitals, and the doctor prescribes, "Give this man," what it is called," (Hindi), ox blood, or chicken juice." So what is this ethic?
Conversations and Morning Walks
1972 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: Just like we can say frankly that the Ramakrishna Mission, they are collecting money, huge money from your country, here also, to mitigate the sufferings of the poor people, daridra-Nārāyaṇa seva. But actually you see that how many poverty-stricken people are there in India, and if you go to the Ramakrishna Mission, you will see all the swamis, they are living in royal order. This is going on. But people are still fool that... But your American people now, they are questioning. That one swami, Nikhilānanda, he told me personally that the American people now are questioning that "You collect money for feeding the poor, but when we go to India, we see so many people lying down on the street." So they are questioning. Naturally there will be question.
1973 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: Just like Vivekananda taught, "Oh, why you are seeking after God? Don't you see so many gods are on the street? They are hungry. They are lame. They are daridra-nārāyaṇa. Why don't you worship them?" This is Māyāvādī. So if we take Vivekananda's version, and be engaged in the service of the daridra-nārāyaṇa, then I am misled. (break) ...preaching this daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā for hundreds of years, at least one hundred years, but still, there are daridras. Even in the city like Bombay, still.
Prabhupāda: So if you know God, then you will understand that you cannot help anyone. They are put into the starving condition under certain condition. So you cannot help them. You are simply thinking that "I will help." There are hundreds and thousands, millions of people starving. What you can do? Even if you try to give some something. Just like this Vivekananda philosophy, daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā, to serve the poor Nārāyaṇa. Nārāyaṇa has become poor. These are manufactured things. This is not with reference to the authorized śāstras or knowledge. What they can do? They raise subscription, huge subscription, on this plea, daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. And Swami Nikhilananda in New York, he personally said, "Now these Americans ask me that you take from us so much money for daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā, but when we go to India, we see all these daridra-nārāyaṇas are lying on the footpath." What you are doing for them? What you can do? You are simply thinking falsely. What you have got to give? Just oil in your own machine. Try to understand God, instead of thinking foolishly, "Oh, what I shall do, this? What I shall do, that?" First, of all try to understand the situation.
Prabhupāda: No, that... Without your attempt, somebody has become rich, just on his birth. It is due to your help? A man is born immediately millionaire. So it is not your humanity work. He has got it. And similarly, a man is immediately turned into pauper. You cannot save him. So what is the meaning of your humanitism? You cannot do anything. Vivekananda is crying so many. Rascals, they are simply collecting money and eating themselves. Daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. And all the daridras are lying on the street. So these are only humbug. It has no meaning. You cannot do anything.
Prabhupāda: No, no, no. He may say nonsense. The fact is this. That if he is sama-darśinaḥ, equal, then why he is particularly aiming to the lower class? That means he is not sama-darśinaḥ. He has not come to the stage. He is simply talking nonsense. Sama-darśinaḥ means he is equal to everyone. That is sama-darśinaḥ. Sama-darśinaḥ does not mean to get a cheap adoration, popularity, I go to the poor. That is their Ramakrishna Mission. They also are doing that same thing. Daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā, like that. Why daridra? Why not real Nārāyaṇa? Just like this morning we read nārāyaṇa-pade. Never said daridra-nārāyaṇa-pade. To the great. Surrender does not mean to the lower. Does it mean surrender? Surrender, this relationship means that to whom I surrender, he is greater than me. And to the lower, mercy. These two words.
1974 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: So when one has come to this knowledge perfectly, that "I am not this body, I am spirit soul, ahaṁ brahmāsmi," that is brahma-bhūta stage. So, so after brahma-bhūta (SB 4.30.20) stage, there are so many other things. Brahma-bhūtaḥ prasannātmā na śocati na kāṅkṣati, samaḥ sarveṣu bhūteṣu (BG 18.54).
Dr. Patel: Samaḥ sarveṣu bhūteṣu.
Prabhupāda: These bhūteṣu.
Mr. Sar: Mad-bhaktiṁ labhate parām.
Prabhupāda: Then he comes to the bhakti-yoga. Not that only daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā, not dhani-nārāyaṇa-sevā.
Dr. Patel: You came out with that.
Prabhupāda: No, no that is, that is the deficiency. If daridra is Nārāyaṇa, why not the dhani?
Prabhupāda: And because you have become guru, you manufacture some ways and means, that is rascaldom. If you are guru, then you have to speak what Kṛṣṇa has said. That is guru. A guru does not manufacture anything. He is not guru. (break) ...it is. People are eager to give service to the fellow man, and not to the animals. How much blind they are. Just see. Animals have to be sent to the slaughterhouse, and fellow man should be given help. This is daridra-nārāyaṇa seva. And what this poor animal-nārāyaṇa has done? Because poor fund of knowledge. And here it is said that both the animals and the people should be taken care of. Who is taking care of the animals? Hundreds and thousands of animals are being slaughtered daily.
Prabhupāda: We do all the work, and he gets advertised as a great charitable doctor.
Prabhupāda: That's it.
Bhāgavata: That he has opened the clinic.
Prabhupāda: Daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. We are not all these false things. Doctor Ghosh is also after daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. (break) We will collect medicine. Our... We shall pay for the expenditure. Our men will be engaged for bandaging. (laughs) Nonsense.
1975 Conversations and Morning Walks
Satsvarūpa: If a large section of the people don't want spiritual life, that's their...
Prabhupāda: No, you cannot force. That is not possible, because he has got independence. You cannot force. You can simply give him knowledge. Therefore to distribute knowledge is the best welfare activities, not this material so-called happiness, daridra-nārāyaṇa-seva and this... They have got that. That will not make them happy. If you give them knowledge, then they will be really benefited. Otherwise not.
Brahmānanda: How do we give knowledge to the common masses of people?
Prabhupāda: Yes, by saṅkīrtana. By hearing, hearing, hearing—this is a medicinal process—the heart will be cleansed and they will take up the knowledge. Now the heart is unclean, so he cannot take up. So this is the medicine.
Bhāgavata: In Bhuvaneśvara, they have big Ramakrishna maṭha. Vivekananda School, library, so much land, everything, very organized.
Prabhupāda: So we can do that. You have to convince people. There is no question of making competition with them. But you, you can preach your own philosophy anywhere.
Guest (3): With that happening with the people in Orissa...
Guest (3): ...try to convince them: No, that is false and this is the way.
Prabhupāda: No, their Ramakrishna Mission allurement is that daridra-nārāyaṇa-seva and hospital. That is their only allurement. They have no program. Nobody is attracted by their philosophy. And what philosophy they have got? Never mind. We are not concerned with them.
Prabhupāda: They have been forced to forget Hare Kṛṣṇa by the so-called rascal leaders. Otherwise India is meant for chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa, the whole India. (break) ...scandalous these Māyāvādīs and next the politicians, killing the spirit of India. These Māyāvādīs teaching "Why you are after God? You are God." That's all. And he says, "Yes, I am God. Why shall I worship God?" This is the... And becoming God, when they do not get any relish of becoming God, then the politician says, "It is all useless. Come to the political field. Take daridra-nārāyaṇa-seva. That's all, finished." The Māyāvādī creates the field of atheism, and later on, the politician make them perfect atheist.
1976 Conversations and Morning Walks
Bhavānanda: They want that you should prepare rasagullā for the mass of people but they don't like it if you're preparing rasagullā to give to Kṛṣṇa.
Prabhupāda: That is Vivekananda, daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. The answer is that if you do not prepare rasagullā for Kṛṣṇa, then there will be no supply of rasagullā. So everything will be finished. Because bhuñjate te tv aghaṁ pāpā ye pacanty ātma-kāraṇāt (BG 3.13). Anyone who is preparing rasagullā for himself or expanded himself, so they simply become implicated with sinful activities. So if you are... Suppose if you prepare rasagullā, stealing from the shopkeeper sugar and..., then how long you will go on? One day you'll be captured. Stena eva sa ucyate (BG 3.12). What is that verse? Stena eva sa ucyate. (Bengali) Yajña-puruṣa. Real point is to satisfy. You cannot supply rasagullā, but if you supply rasagullā as prasādam, then the rasagullā-eater is benefited, you are benefited, and Kṛṣṇa is pleased.
Prabhupāda: You'll find in Bhagavad-gītā. Arjuna many times said, iti śuśrūṣu: "I do not know whether it is correct, but I heard it like that." That is speaking. What you have heard from the authorities, if you speak, you repeat that, that is real speaking. Then pṛthivīṁ sa śiṣyāt: then you'll be guru for the whole world, if you don't manufacture. So what is the difference between our Kṛṣṇa conscious and others? They manufacture ideas. Just like Ramakrishna Mission, manufacture: daridra-nārāyaṇa sevā. Where is...? Nārāyaṇa is there, Lakṣmī-Nārāyaṇa. Where is this word, daridra-nārāyaṇa? He manufactured.
Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: The karmīs will argue, "I am not ready to hear this yet." Many people, they come and they hear this philosophy, they say, "Very nice. But I am not ready for it yet."
Prabhupāda: But why you have come here, to hear Bhagavad-gītā? Why you have come?
Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: Generally, they come to take nice prasādam.
Prabhupāda: All right, that is also kṛṣṇa-prasādam. Prasādam means we offer the foodstuff to Kṛṣṇa; then it is prasādam. So you have not come, but you have to come to take prasādam. This, it has got connection with Kṛṣṇa. So therefore we welcome you that at least for eating, you are coming to Kṛṣṇa. Gradually, you'll understand Kṛṣṇa, by eating only. Kṛṣṇa is not so easy to be understood, but we are giving you facility to eat kṛṣṇa-prasādam so that one day you can understand this movement. This is the policy. Actually, that is the policy. We are not poor-feeding. That is not our philosophy. Like Vivekananda. Daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. No, we are not after that. We are giving you prasādam. And that is fact, that by eating, eating, eating, eating, you one day will become Kṛṣṇa conscious. Simply by eating.
Indian man (4): Only one thing I just want to clarify, that under human behavior towards the society, honest behavior toward the society, to help the people, to help the neighbors and like that, try to help...
Prabhupāda: First of all, tell me, what is your power to help? You are poor yourself. What you can help? Then why you are talking all...
Indian man (4): No, prabhu, supposing if we see...
Prabhupāda: You cannot help. First of all, you cannot help.
Indian man (4): Right.
Prabhupāda: If you can help, you can simply repeat the instruction of Kṛṣṇa. Otherwise you have no power to help. It is all concoction. Vivekananda, for the last hundred years-daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. He could not do anything. First of all you must know that you have no capacity to help.
Prabhupāda: Precaution is better than cure. One comes to the hospital for cure, but why not take the precaution so that he may not have to come to the hospital for cure? That is Vedic civilization. They have different prescribed rules and regulations so that a person may not fall sick. The modern idea is that "Let them fall sick; we have got hospitals and treat them, and they'll be cured." But he is cured, again he falls sick. That is going on. They have no program for precaution. They have program for cure. But actually, precaution is better than cure. We are taking precaution. The other fools, rascals, they are thinking, "What these people are doing? They are (indistinct) to have no this program, that," according to them. Just like our Vivekananda, he prescribed, daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. The same thing—hospital. We kill all animals, and the hospital patient is given the meat for improvement of the health. But he does not know that this is not curing; he is become implicated in his karma. He has to be killed again, and eaten by the other animals.
Indian man: What about so many saints who are preaching yoga and religion all over the world?
Prabhupāda: Anyone who does not know the science, they are not saint. They are cheaters. If they do not know the science, what is spiritual life, what is material life. So their speaking is simply cheating. Therefore we should state the standard, Bhagavad-gītā, the ācāryas. In the Bhagavad-gītā it is said ācāryopāsanam. Take the ācāryas, Rāmānujācārya, Madhvācārya, even Śaṅkarācārya. So there must be standard. It is... Some of them are manufacturing some spiritual life. Just like Vivekananda did, daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. Is there any such word in our Vedic śāstras? Daridra-nārāyaṇa? Nārāyaṇa has become daridra? One has to worship daridra-nārāyaṇa.
Indian man: You don't agree with what has been preached...
Prabhupāda: Why shall I agree? Because there is no such thing in the śāstra. Is there word, any word, in the whole Bhagavad-gītā, daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā?
1977 Conversations and Morning Walks
Girirāja: Actually, it seems that in your system of management, the basic principle is to depend on Kṛṣṇa.
Prabhupāda: Yes. Why not? He says ahaṁ tvāṁ sarva-pāpebhyo (BG 18.66). Distress will be if I am disobedient. This is nature's law. And if I surrender to Kṛṣṇa, where is the question of distress? Sukha se saba hari bhaje duḥkha se haje. This is one Hindi poetry, that "When one is in distressed condition, he goes to God: 'Please save me. Give me this mercy.' " So duḥka se means: "In distressed condition he becomes a devotee." But if he becomes a devotee when he's happy, then where is the question of duḥkha, or distress? Sukha se saba hari bhaje. When you are happy, at that time if you worship Hari, then there is no question of duḥkha. That Vivekananda's policy, daridra-nārāyaṇa-seva. Why not seva-nārāyaṇa? Why He should become daridra? Why not engage in? That he does not know. "He becomes a daridra-nārāyaṇa, and I become his servant." Foolish rascal. A discovered philosophy.
Yogeśvara: So they may challenge, "Do you mean to say that you can feed the whole world without meat?"
Prabhupāda: We don't say; you are saying. We don't say. We say that you must be punished without food. You are dying without food. That is your proper justice. We say that. We are not anxious to this daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. We are not. We give. Whatever we have got, we distribute prasādam. That's all. We are not concerned about their daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. That is not our business. Suppose there are so many persons, they are without food in the hospital. Doctor has prescribed, "No food." What you can do there? Can you show your sympathy? "Oh, so many persons are lying without... Let us give." Then you'll be beaten with shoes.
Tamāla Kṛṣṇa: What about nationalism here in India?
Prabhupāda: They are imitating. What Gandhi has done? These things are cheating, spoiled. Then they have now a slogan to drive away poverty. Vivekananda imitated, daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā. So Vivekananda started his mission in India hundred years ago. Why there are so many daridras lying on the street at night? Hm? Everywhere. Here you can say, "India is poverty-stricken." That is your imagination. Accepting that, those who are materially opulent, why they are also, they're lying on the street? Why in Bowery Street they are lying on the street? Why in the Bedford Park English boys are lying on street?
Tamāla Kṛṣṇa: I don't know... One verse can be quoted that because of one's connection with the modes of material nature...
Prabhupāda: Amsterdam, who they, lying on the street in center of Europe? What have they done about these poor? On the other hand, the poor have learned how to utilize unrestricted sex and indulge in gambling and intoxication.
Mr. Dwivedi: But this particular I remember, daridrāṇāṁ bhara kaunteya...
Prabhupāda: This is... This is wrong theory. Don't maintain this. This is a very wrong theory. Just like "Service to the leaves is service to the root." Is it not wrong? What do you think? Like a tree, so where the service should be given, to the root or to the leaf?
Mr. Dwivedi: The root.
Prabhupāda: Then why do you say like that? And Kṛṣṇa says openly, mam ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja. He doesn't even recommend to worship demigods. Kāmais tais tair hṛta-jñānāḥ yajanty anya-devatāḥ (BG 7.20). So these are imagination, concoction. They are not authorized. Vivekananda advocated daridra-nārāyaṇa-sevā hundred years ago. So India is full of daridras. What Mothilal can do? What Vivekananda can do? This is all simply concoction. You cannot do anything.
1947 to 1965 Correspondence
I have come to this country with the same purpose in view and as far as I see it here in America there is very good scope for preaching the cult of Lord Caitanya. Here the Ramakrishna Mission is there for the last forty years and I attended their two centres here and I found there is no appreciable gatherings. Vivekananda preached for Daridra Narayana seva and the practical Americans question the swamijis of Ramakrishna Mission why there are still so many Daridra Narayanas lying on the streets and foot paths in India. In America there is no such scene of Daridra Narayanas lying on the foot path or in other words there is no question of Daridra Narayana here because every one has ample to eat and there immense vacant places for their homes. I have not seen a single spot here which is not nicely decorated with good houses and nice roads. Actually they have built a properous country in this part of the world and so material prosperity is concerned they are happy in every respect.