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Do you know that? Do you know that for a fact? How do you know this is not illusion? How do you know that? Do we know anything for sure (this is cotton. This is cotton. Everyone knows. But if I give you a lump)?

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Expressions researched:
"Do we know anything for sure" |"Do you know that for a fact" |"Do you know that" |"How do you know that" |"How do you know this is not illusion"

Conversations and Morning Walks

1969 Conversations and Morning Walks

What proof is that is illusion?
Discussion with Guests -- December 23, 1969, Boston:

Guest (3): It would appear that to claim that you can reach eternal bliss or I don't know what else you might call it, by just chanting, it seems to be too easy.

Prabhupāda: That is one process of self-realization. There are different process of self-realization. For this age, when people are less intelligent, this process is right.

Guest (2): ...what you are doing by chanting is kind of...

Prabhupāda: You chant and you will understand. If you have no child, then how can you understand what is the labor of producing a child?

Guest (3): But then it is like saying that if you haven't ever leaped into a well, you don't know what will happen to you if you leap into a well.

Prabhupāda: First of all you do not know yourself. The first ignorance is that you are identifying yourself with this body, which you are not. First of all try to understand yourself, then you will understand what is God. You do not know yourself.

Guest (3): But I am God, right? I am God. You are God too.

Prabhupāda: You are dog.

Guest (3): But you are me and I am you. We are both God. Right?

Prabhupāda: No, no.

Guest (3): Why not?

Prabhupāda: You are not God because God... You do not know what is the meaning of God. What do you mean by God? First of all define.

Guest (3): Everything is God.

Prabhupāda: If you apply that definition, then you are God. First of all define what is God.

Guest (3): God is everything. God is it.

Prabhupāda: That is not the definition. God is not everything.

Guest (3): And it is God. It is all it.

Prabhupāda: I say everything is God's energy. Everything is not God.

Guest (3): Everything is not God?

Prabhupāda: Yes. Just like the same example I gave immediately that the sunshine and the sun. Sunshine is not different from the sun.

Guest (2): How can the sun itself be different from it's energy? Sunshine is energy, sun is energy, and both of them...

Prabhupāda: No. This is an example. Sunshine is also energy. Everything material is an energy of the Lord. That's all right. But I'm giving you the example that sunshine and the sun is one, but at the same time different, simultaneously. You cannot accept sunshine as the sun. Suppose you are in the sunshine, you cannot say that you are in the sun planet.

Guest (3): But it's all the same.

Prabhupāda: No. Why all the same? Why all the same?

Guest (3): Of course. It's all the same. Sure.

Prabhupāda: If you go to the sun, you... You cannot go. You have no imagination what is sun, although you see it. How can I say that sunshine and sun is all the same?

Guest (3): No. You don't have to have imagination. You have to have insight. That's... That's...

Prabhupāda: What is that insight? Do you think that sunshine and sun, they can be, is one?

Guest (3): Everything is the same.

Prabhupāda: No, you cannot say that, that the temperature of the sun and the temperature of the sunshine is the same.

Guest (2): No. But just because you have two different kinds of energies, why do you have to differentiate them? Essentially what he was trying to say...

Prabhupāda: That is intelligence. That is intelligence. One energy is acting as cooling, and the same energy is acting as heating. Why do you say it is heat and it is cool?

Guest (3): It's all the same thing. Heat and cool is the same thing.

Prabhupāda: Why do you say the same thing? It is not the same thing.

Guest (2): Of course, it is the same thing.

Guest (3): Everything is "it." It's all it.

Prabhupāda: No. That is nonsense. Cold is cold, heat is heat. Only it is acting. You are talking on the material platform. You are not spiritual. You don't talk nonsense. (laughter) No. We have got enough time.

Guest (3): I'm not trying to argue with you. I'm just trying to understand, because from what I understand of it there is no difference between...

Prabhupāda: Just try to understand...

Guest (3): No wait. Wait. Just one moment. Cause and effect are all the same thing.

Prabhupāda: No, no, no, no.

Guest (3): Yes. Sure.

Devotee: What do you mean they're the same thing?

Prabhupāda: This is cotton. The cause is cotton. Will you like to take cotton instead of the shirt?

Guest (3): This is illusion.

Prabhupāda: Not illusion.

Guest (3): Sure.

Prabhupāda: What do you mean by illusion? Don't talk nonsense. (laughter) If I gave you lump of cotton instead of this shirt, will you accept it?

Guest (3): I'm sorry. I don't mean to argue. I am sorry.

Prabhupāda: You are arguing?

Guest (3): I don't mean to argue with you.

Prabhupāda: No. If I say...

Guest (3): I'm trying to understand something, but you...

Prabhupāda: This is cotton. This is cotton. Everyone knows. But if I give you a lump...

Guest (3): Do you know that? Do you know that for a fact? How do you know this is not illusion? How do you know that? Do we know anything for sure?

Prabhupāda: What proof is that is illusion?

Guest (3): No, no. Wait. The burden of the proof lies on you because I don't claim it is cotton. You claim it is cotton. So...

Prabhupāda: How do you say it is not cotton. First of all prove it.

Guest (3): Initially...

Prabhupāda: No! First of all prove it that it is not cotton.

Guest (3): No, no. One moment. You claim that it is cotton, therefore the burden of the proof lies on you inasmuch as you have to prove...

Prabhupāda: Everyone will say it is cotton. Everyone will say it is cotton. That is proof. Everyone will accept this is cotton, made of cotton. Who will say this is not made of cotton? But if I give you a lump of cotton instead of shirt will you accept it?

Guest (3): I apologize. I don't mean to argue with you. I'm just trying to...

Prabhupāda: No, why not?

Guest (1): You speak of God and matter and as matter being the thing which keeps us from seeing God. It seems to me it's something like pride and delusions, myself, and something like this, and ideas that I have.

Prabhupāda: You may have ideas, but I don't agree with your idea. If... I say that anything take it material or spiritual they are different energy of God. Matter is not different from God as it is energy of God, but still matter is not God.

Guest (1): Yes.

Prabhupāda: Just try to understand this point, that whatever we see, that is distribution of energy of God. But energy and the energetic is not the same. But they are same as...simultaneously same also because you cannot separate. Just like fire and heat. You cannot separate heat from fire but heat is not fire. Just try to understand this. Heat is not fire although heat and fire cannot be separated.

Guest (1): But I don't think I'm thinking of myself as matter but I'm also not thinking of myself as...

Prabhupāda: No. You are not matter. You are spirit. Your body is matter. You are also one of the energies. You are spiritual energy and your body is material energy. And because you are spiritual energy, therefore your intimate relationship with the spirit soul or the Supreme Soul... That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness or God consciousness. The body will change, but you, as spirit soul, you will not change. You are eternal. Na hanyate hanyamāne śarīre (BG 2.20). Body being changed, that is not changed. That is eternal. So we have to pick up our eternal relationship with God. That is missing.