Prabhupāda: There is a class, kṣatriya; they will be very glad to be recruited as soldier. They are very strong. Jat. They are called jat, Gurkha. They don't like any other occupation. Fighting they like. The Sikhs. The Sikhs they are jat class, and the Gurkha, oh, the whole British Empire was extended with the help of the Sikhs and the Gurkhas. The Britishers took these Gurkhas and the Sikhs to Burma, to Messopotamia. They liquidated the Empire because they lost India. The British soldiers were not helping to keep up their Empire. These Indians soldiers. In the first war they gained for these Indian soldiers. They fought in France and everywhere very nicely. They are fighter class. They like to fight. And fighting is not going every day. So the arrangement was... Just like you have to fight for the state. So there is no monthly salary system. You are awarded by the government a certain tract of land free. You produce grains and utilize the land; no tax for you. But when there will be war, you shall fight. Very nice arrangement.
Collaborate with us to invoke and fully manifest Srila Prabhupada's Vani-presence.
- 1 Conversations and Morning Walks
- 1.1 1968 Conversations and Morning Walks
- 1.2 1971 Conversations and Morning Walks
- 1.3 1972 Conversations and Morning Walks
- 1.4 1973 Conversations and Morning Walks
- 1.5 1974 Conversations and Morning Walks
- 1.6 1975 Conversations and Morning Walks
- 1.7 1976 Conversations and Morning Walks
- 1.8 1977 Conversations and Morning Walks
Conversations and Morning Walks
1968 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: Any principles of religion current in the world, they are all included in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, any principle. But just like if you have got two millions of dollars, the ten dollars, fifty dollars, five hundred dollars, five thousand dollars, or go on increasing, everything is included there, similarly, Kṛṣṇa consciousness is perfect. Just like in New York there is a building, Empire State Building. It is 102 stories. So one who has gone up to the topmost story, 102, it is to be understood that he has passed over the fiftieth story or fortieth story or tenth story or all the stories. So one who has become Kṛṣṇa conscious, he knows everything, the meditation, the yoga, this practice, that practice. Everything is there. That we can give proof. It is practically. So we have to simply become Kṛṣṇa conscious. Then everything will be included there.
1971 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: This predominance is dwindling. Where is your British Empire gone?
Journalist (1): Yes, quite. In fact, I was asking you about...
Prabhupāda: So this is artificial. There was Roman Empire, there was Mogul Empire, there was Carthagian Empire, there was Egyptian Empire and Greece and so on. They come and go. And there is a song by a Vaiṣṇava, kata caturānana, māri māri yāvatā.(?) There are so many Brahmās come also and they died. So this kind of empirical imperial, onslaught, they will come and stay for hundred or two hundred, and create some problems. There were...Just like there was Napoleon, there was this and that. So they will come and go. They will come and go, create some disturbances and go. Nobody will stay.
1972 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: Well, President Nixon means this country. Why he went to China? Why he went to Russia? He's also afraid. If there is war there will be great calamity. So everyone is afraid. Everyone is under the control of the laws of nature. Everyone is hungry. So actually nobody's powerful in this material world. Even if he's powerful, it is for temporary. So many Hitlers, so many Napoleons, so many Churchills and others came and gone. There was powerful British Empire, powerful Roman Empire. So nobody's powerful. That's a wrong idea. In due course of time everything will be kicked out and finished. That is the law of nature.
Prabhupāda: Yes, I'm ready. (break—conversation in car) That building is Empire Building?
Devotee: Yes. Empire State Building.
Prabhupāda: Just like your British Empire. You are British?
Ian Polsen: Yes.
Prabhupāda: British Empire, when there was British Empire, when they were getting money from all over the world, somehow or other they constructed so many big, big buildings. Now they are encouraging not so big, and now it is difficult to maintain it. We can see practically that you have got so nice buildings in London, but it is not being properly maintained. You haven't got sufficient means now to maintain them. Therefore it was..., British Empire was for the time being that prosperity. Now to keep up your prestige you are concerned in so many ways. So anything you do in this material world, that is temporary. So many-Roman Empire, Moghul Empire, British Empire, Hitler Empire—they came and gone.
Prabhupāda: Yes. They actually expanded their empire all over the (indistinct) world by Indian cooperation. Therefore these big men like Attlee, when they thought that "India is going out of our hands," so don't (indistinct) up our empire. Forget it.
Prabhupāda: Kṛṣṇa is giving you the opportunity, you Americans. Now you are taking Kṛṣṇa consciousness, you will be the most opulent nation of the world. Lakṣmī-Nārāyaṇa both. You have got Lakṣmī, but if you take Nārāyaṇa, Lakṣmī will be permanent. Lakṣmī will not go. And if you reject Nārāyaṇa, then Lakṣmī will stay for some time. That is Cañcalā. Her name is Cañcalā. The British empire has failed, the Roman Empire has failed, the so many empires, the Mogul empire has failed, because they wanted Lakṣmī, not Nārāyaṇa. If you take Nārāyaṇa, your Lakṣmī will stay. Just try to convince your countrymen, just like President Nixon. It is Kṛṣṇa's desire that I was dictated to go to America, because Kṛṣṇa wants that you should take this Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Kṛṣṇa wants. So you have taken. Now spread. It will be grand success. And there are so many candidates, very nice.
1973 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: That, that, I am pointing out, that all intelligent persons, during the British Empire, they came out. The whole aim was to defy the Indian civilization.
Prabhupāda: Yes. And they have given, "A Rival for Nelson." So this movement is a rival... Days were there in British Empire that Nelson was a hero. Now Kṛṣṇa is going to be hero in this country. (laughter) It is a good admission, "A Rival for Nelson." Actually, He should be.
Prabhupāda: You produce more by advanced agricultural process and then throw it into the ocean. Real purpose was to produce more to see that nobody's hungry. That is not being done. There is no sympathy. This is not civilization. This is a hodge-podge. Simply wasting labor. That's all. Now here, the Parliament, now what is the use of Parliament? They have lost their empire. What is the use of Parliament? Formerly they had to rule all over the world. So representative, Parliament... Now they have got... What they have got? But still they have got the Parliament, the bodyguard, the King, Queen. Show only. Without Kṛṣṇa consciousness, this so-called advancement of civilization has no meaning. Simply waste of time.
Prabhupāda: So you give... Yes. That is the... The only difference is that in human form of life you can awaken your Kṛṣṇa consciousness. In the animal form... Here we are sitting with all human form of life, gentlemen, civilized men. I cannot call cats and dogs and sit here, and to understand what is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That is not possible. Therefore this opportunity should be given. This opportunity should be given. And especially, you are English nation, recognized, great nation, respectful, you are respected... Especially in India, we have got very good respect for English nation. We had connection for so many years. And the politicians, they spoiled. Otherwise, the, I, we liked the British Empire, means unity of the human being all over the world. That can be revived again. That can be revived again. If you come to this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, your Queen comes to that,... There is process. There is process. You can revive your British Empire. It is not story. If you people take little advice from me, I can help you. Yes. You are intelligent nation. So kindly do this service to the students and awaken their dormant Kṛṣṇa consciousness. It will be a great service. And we are meant for helping you all. So you can inquire. You are at liberty to come at any time and inquire.
Prabhupāda: So far I think that British people, they organized very nicely the British Empire, but some way or other, it is now lost. But still, the British prestige can be elevated if actually, according to the Vedic instruction, you try to make your social construction, the political institution and economic development... Every direction is there. So you are all great historians. And there are many politicians. If you take this instruction of the Vedas little seriously, you can make your state an ideal state, and people are still ready to follow you. Then the whole history of the world will change. And if you people agree, then I can help you. I can help.
Prabhupāda: Yes. So they were feeling the... Actually, in India... In our childhood, we know. Every Indian felt very secure. They never expected that Britishers will go. They were so sympathetic. And now they... This is the pulse felt by that statistics officer. They are not very much satisfied with the present system of government. British administration was very much appreciated by the Indians. Even Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura appreciated. Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura, he has written in something, somewhere, that "The Britishers also very nice because they don't interfere with the religious affairs." So as soon as they changed their views and tried to divide the Hindus and Muslims, the British Empire lost. According to Queen's declaration, the Britishers pledged that "They will not interfere with your religious affairs." Later on, for political purposes, when they interfered with this Hindu-Muslim question, then the British Empire lost.
Prabhupāda: There is one moral instruction by Cāṇakya Paṇḍita. Cāṇakya Paṇḍita was a great minister during the time of Mahārāja Candragupta. So he was honorary Prime Minister in the empire. So he has a book of moral instruction. So he says in that moral instruction, who is a learned man. So he gives the description of a learned man, that: mātṛvat para-dāreṣu. Mātṛvat. "Just treat all other women except your wife as your mother." Mātṛvat para-dāreṣu, para-dravyeṣu loṣṭravat. Loṣṭa means as there are so many pebbles lying on the street, you don't care for it, similarly, others' property, others' money you should treat just like these pebbles lying on the street or the garbage lying on the street.
Prabhupāda: They're also thinking that "We are not sumptuously fed," or something. Some demands is there. Some demand. And they are lying down, Amsterdam and here, on the street. And why? But they are coming of rich families, rich nation. Especially America. In London also, I have seen. Regent Park. They're lying down. Police is kicking. Police is kicking: "Get up, get up!" Why? Behind them the British Empire is, British government is there. Why he's lying down there? Who has told him to...? Government is requesting, "If you have no home, come on. I shall give you home." In Bombay also, these, what is called? The huts?
Prabhupāda: This Subhash Chandra Bose. And he organized the INA, Indian National Army. So when this Indian National Army was organized and the Britishers... They were great politicians. They saw, "Now the army is going to national movement. We cannot be." Then they left. Because it was not possible. They were maintaining British Empire with Indian money, Indian men. You see? They did not conquer by their British soldiers all round the Far East, Burma and the Mesopotamia, and the Egypt. That was Indian army, the Sikh soldiers and the Gurkha soldiers, and Indian money. On the pretext that "For Indian protection, we are maintaining this army." Actually, they were expanding their empire. Africa, Burma.
1974 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: Just like I have seen in London the Parliament. When they had some so-called empire... Now the Parliament is useless, useless. The Parliament members and the Lords, House of Lords, House of Commons, they are now useless. They have got some old books only. In Parliament. I have seen. Some old books. Old books means all the speeches are recorded in books. And who is going to read them? Almiras, so many... I have seen in Parliament. Hundreds and thousands of speeches recorded and bound up very nicely. Who is going to read them? Simply waste of time.
Prabhupāda: So non-cooperate with them, they will fail. And that was successful. He started non-cooperation movement, that "Don't cooperate with these Britishers," and when they saw there is now full non-cooperation, they left voluntarily. It is not possible to bring so many administrators, military strength, men, men too. Actually the British empire was expanded through the help of Indians.
Prabhupāda: Britishers were maintaining the British Empire at the cost of India. Soldiers, money.
Prabhupāda: No, why the hippies are lying on the street or in the park? Why? You give them relief. The whole Amsterdam city is full of hippies lying on the street and park. What you are doing for them? They are not poor men. They have got enough to eat. Their parents, father, grandfather, they can give. Why they are lying? What you can do? Go and pick them up. Make them nicely living. Why don't you do that? Talking nonsense. What is their answer? Why they have become hippies? They are not... The Indians may be poverty-stricken, but they are not poverty-stricken. In England the whole British empire is there. The whole American government is there. And still, western countries, they have got resources. They have means. They are not poor. Why your sons and grandsons are lying on the street? What is their answer? They are making plan that everyone would live materially very comfortably, but why these people, in spite of possessing material facilities... (break) Yes, this is the real problem.
1975 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: That means in need. So that is the question, that you may be in need of food, I may be in need of some woman, he may be in need of some money... In this way everyone is needy. Therefore ultimately one should search after God, when every need will be fulfilled. Just like Dhruva Mahārāja, he went... He was in need of an empire like his father. For that reason he went to the forest and performed all kinds of austerities, and when he saw God he said, svāmin kṛthārto 'smi varaṁ na yāce: "I have no more need. Everything is fulfilled. I don't want anything." He... God said, "Now whatever benediction you want, you take from Me." He said, "No, I don't want anything. Now everything is fulfilled." So that is the real need.
Prabhupāda: Then the Gandhi came and took this vow that "The Britishers must go, quit India." So Britishers got a very good opportunity for world unity under British Empire. But their only policy was that to exploit others and enrich London. That was their bad policy, yes. They should have ruled for the benefit of the people. Then British rule was very nice.
Prabhupāda: Yes. Somebody, they act... Just like illicit sex. They did not know that it is sinful. Now they are understanding. There was no good leader. Even the priests. In the Bible it is said, "Thou shalt not kill." The priests never said, because they are meat-eaters. They themselves are meat-eaters. How they can say? "It is our tradition to eat meat." But how the common man will be educated? (break) You can give me the general prasāda today. I will taste. (test?) (break) When one becomes rich, he becomes lazy. What is called? "Leads to poverty"? Luxury. "Luxury leads to poverty." So at one time one become very rich by hard work, and next generation gets the money for nothing, he spends it on luxuries, and the third generation, poor. There are many families, in everywhere. In England, all these English men, in the beginning they worked very hard, expanding their empire and working. Then gradually, when they became Lord family, then luxury. Now they are poverty-stricken.
Jayādvaita: Now there's no empire for the sun to set on.
Prabhupāda: No. Now they have made it Commonwealth, keeping some scent, flavor of British empire. Commonwealth.
Prabhupāda: Yes. Greek history is about three thousand years. (break) ...During the time of Mahārāja Parīkṣit's grandson. Mahārāja Parīkṣit was the grandson of Yudhiṣṭhira, and Yudhiṣṭhira ruled over five thousand years ago. So the Yayāti... Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira's grandson is Parīkṣit. His son is Janamejaya. And his son is Yayāti. And his son started Greek and Roman Empire. So therefore the Greek history is not more than three thousand years. Mahārāja Yayāti banished his two sons to the European quarters. Mleccha-yavana. Later on they became yavana, from Vedic culture deviated. This is the history.
Prabhupāda: Emperor of British Empire, and he was a thief. Just see.
Prabhupāda: Yes. Therefore Kṛṣṇa has imposed death, that "You may make your plan as free man, but you'll not be allowed to stay. I'll kick you out." These poor men, they did not think of it, that "I am making so nice plan, but at any moment I'll be kicked out. So where is my freedom?" Dull brain does not think of it. A prisoner, if he thinks that he is free to act, is it not foolishness? A prisoner, in prison, and if he thinks that he is free to act, is it not foolishness? So that they do not think. Therefore Kṛṣṇa has grouped them: mūḍha, these rascals, mūḍha. They conduct freedom movement. Just like in our country also, before this British Empire or this Mohammedan Empire there was no knowledge about this freedom. Indian people never thought of freedom. They know that "We are not free.
Prabhupāda: England. So everything Indian required, they would supply, and they would govern and they would exploit. Therefore they became so rich—simply by exploiting India. And Indian soldiers, they expanded empire-Africa, Burma. That's all, all Indian exploitation, Indian men, money, and exploitation. As soon as they lost India, they lost whole empire.
Cyavana: Now they are also suffering.
Prabhupāda: Eh? That... That must be. They will be suffering more and more. They will be beggars. They have done so much sinful activities for expanding their empire. Now they will have to become beggars. And within two hundred years, everything finished. They started their exploitation from seventeenth, eighteenth century. And in the twentieth century, everything finished. The French people and the English people... This is also one of the examples. Both the nations came here to exploit. That was the competition in... The French people and the English people, they would go for colonization, fight, and establi... America was also that, Canada, everywhere. But because they were their own men, they were given dominion status. Almost free.
Prabhupāda: They were obliged to do that. In the country there is no food, no shelter, nothing. Therefore Hitler's determination was, "I shall make this shopkeeper nation again fishers." What is called? Fishermen. "I shall ruin their empire." So he did it. But he also became ruined. He did it. He ruined the Englishmen, but he also became ruined, finished, Germany finished. But Germany will be able to rise again. Englishmen will not be able to.
Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: Why is that, Prabhupāda?
Prabhupāda: They committed so many sinful activities, yes, for maintaining their empire. To sell their Manchester-made cloth they ruined the cloth industry of India and cut this finger.
Prabhupāda: Then? Why does he say "extinct"? These cheaters, they cheat themselves and bluff others and mislead the people. This is their position. We want at least that people may not be bluffed by these rascals and waste their time. That we want, that much. They may say that "You are not scientist." Yes, I am not scientist, but I can request you that don't be bluffed by this nonsense. That much I can say. I can prove that he is a nonsense. Why you are wasting time after them? Chant Hare Kṛṣṇa. (break)...their folly, European men. Where the American men will go? (laughter) Just see. (break) ...from India they made Indian center, and they conquered both sides—Far East, Middle East, Africa—with Indian soldiers. They organized Indian soldiers and Sikhs and Gurkhas, and they employed them for extending their empire. British soldier does not mean... Maybe two, one or two British commanders, but real soldiers were Indians.
Prabhupāda: Yes. This is going on. "These Britishers do not allow me to go there? All right, kill them." That was the Hitler policy and Kaiser's policy, to kill British empire. They did it. They were successful. But they were also killed. This is going on, unnecessary. Why you produce so much razor and scissor? And then find out market, and when there is competition, there is anger, there is enviousness, there is fight, one after another, one after another. Where is peace? Why do you produce so many unnecessarily? Why do you produce so many cars, when there is scarcity of power, and fight with Arabians? Anartha. Therefore it is called anartha, unnecessary. Anarthopasamaṁ sākṣād bhakti-yogam adhokṣaje (SB 1.7.6). As soon as people will be devotee, they will not require unnecessary things. They will be satisfied, simply bare necessities of life. That is peaceful condition. You create unnecessary needs of life, and then there is competition, there is hellish life, the factory, and then the factory man requires wine to forget his hard labor, so on, so on. Then he become thieves. He become rogues. This is your society. How you can expect peace?
Prabhupāda: Then why they are in the hands of the empire lost? Why they lost their empire?
1976 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: Bengali culture was very much adored. Surendranath Bannerjee started the political movement, and he was so well known. Even in Parliament, the Englishmen, English M.P.'s, he... They were speaking of Surendranath. They used to say "Surrendered not." "Here is a person who is not 'Surrender not.' He'll never surrender. 'Surrender not.' " Actually, the British Empire was startled by the agitation of Surendranath Bannerjee. The Congress was started by Surendranath Bannerjee, this one Congress. Two Bengali and one Englishman started this Congress sometimes in 1887, 1867, like that. So in our childhood we used to see that Surendranath Bannerjee was being elected president of Congress almost every year. And Gandhi came into prominence when Surendranath Bannerjee surrendered. Formerly he was not surrendering. But the government gave him the first ministership, that "You become minister." So he became a government man. Then Gandhi came in prominence. Surendranath Bannerjee was the first minister in India. (break) ...in our childhood, if he would speak, thousands, thousands men will gather in Calcutta. (break) ...Surendranath Bannerjee Road.
Hari-śauri: Yes. The Roman Empire extended all over there.
Prabhupāda: England was under Roman Empire. Normandy. Normandy?
Prabhupāda: Large or small, whatever; there was. But England had no soldiers. Whatever they did—fight—with the Indian soldiers, Gurkha and Sikh. Indian money, Indian soldiers, everything Indian—they were fighting. So when the Britishers saw that "The nationalism has come amongst the soldiers. It is not possible to maintain the Empire," they voluntarily gave indepen.... "Better give us good relations, and our business.... Make some agreement. But before departing, make them weak and divide Pakistan and India."
Prabhupāda: So all, everything has been experimented. Big, big empires, big, big society, big, big nation. That Hitler, he wanted to make something big. Napoleon wanted to make something big. Nothing big has been done. Where is Napoleon? Where is Hitler? So these are all temporary attempts. It is sure to be failure. Because they do not know how to do things. That is the defect. They are simply imagining, concoction. Here is a practical and sure proposal in the Bhagavad-gītā. God comes and He's giving personal instruction, that "Do things like this." Your economic problem, your political problem, your social problem, everything.... You ask any question, any problem, the answer is there, perfect. All problems. Why people should not take this perfect answer to all problems? That is intelligence. Experiment we have made so many materially. They have all failed. We were under British rule. So where is that British rule now? And before that, there was Roman Empire, Carthagian Empire, Egyptian Empire, so many, Mogul Empire, then British Empire, now your American Empire. But these things will not help.
Prabhupāda: You cannot do anything. There will be a third-class or poor class man, which you even want to help them, they'll not accept your help. That is another thing. These three phases.... I have seen in London, the British Empire, and the hippies, they are lying on the park, and the police kicking, "Hey, ut, ut," (laughter) But I mean to say, the nature is law, nature's law, that a richer class, middle class and a poorer class. That will continue.
Prabhupāda: Yes. Because they thought, "This is a third-class nation, a small island, fishermen, and they have wealthy (indistinct)?" That is natural. Whole world. In our childhood, we used to see map, almost whole world red-red means British. (laughter) They said that there was no sunset in the British Empire.
Prabhupāda: Oh, yes, any rascal thing. They made a good market. And British Empire means to sell their goods. And they, for that purpose, they became rich. Money was drawn from all parts, especially from India. Everything. Later on, gradually we came to understand. In Lucknow, because I was in medical business, so I saw one Japanese salesman was selling one medicine, one or two items, potassiodide. Do you know? No. Potassium iodide. And another, iodine. He was selling at four rupees, eight annas a pound. But we were accustomed to purchase English potassiodide and iodine, thirteen rupees a pound. That Howard's.... Very famous, Howard's chemicals, like that. They were selling. So I doubted that "How so much cheap this Japanese firm can supply?" And they used to advertise that all these Japanese goods are third class. Yes, "German goods are second class. Our goods, first class." So I inquired from the salesman, "How is it that you are supplying so cheap?" "They're supplying.... The price is the real price." "Now why they charge more?" "They purchase from us and pack and sell." There are many big chemical concerns in Germany. Germans are very good manufacturers, especially of chemicals, iron, machine. Still you find, all this Uher and, what is called, Gundsag?
Prabhupāda: Ah, janmācāra. First of all, janma, the family, heredity, was taken into consideration, but that is now forgotten. Get money. Just like in England the British empire's policy was that you bring money from outside and deposit in the government treasury and you become lord. Is it not? Bring money, some way or other. So that was going on, exploiting, they used to go to the foreign countries and somehow or other accumulate money. Just like Lord Clive. He was a street boy, but he made some policy. In this way, diplomacy, he entered into Bengal and got some money, and Lord Clive, he became Lord Clive. So money is the criterion. Some way or other, bring money. That's all. That's a fact. These are the symptoms. Just try to understand.
Prabhupāda: That is material life. The material life means falsely he's thinking that he'll be happy by material adjustment. That is material life. Falsely he's thinking. He'll never be happy, but they are thinking like that. Bahir-artha-māninaḥ. Na te viduḥ svārtha-gatiṁ hi viṣṇuṁ durāśayā (SB 7.5.31). Durāśayā means this hope will never be fulfilled. That is called durāśayā, a hope which is not going to be successful at any time. And throughout the whole history they have tried, the British Empire, the Roman Empire, the Egyptian Empire, so many they tried, but all failed. Napoleon, Hitler, but still they have no eyes to see. From the history you see, everything failed. Napoleon started with some ideal, conquering all over Europe, and at last he had to die drinking horse urine. You know that? It was, later on he was arrested by British, and when he was asking drinking water he was given horse urine. That was his last life.
Hari-śauri: That was when he died? He died then?
Prabhupāda: He was so much insulted. Because every European countries were harassed, they had very bad idea about this Napoleon. Unnecessarily expanding the interest of France. "France and Napoleon, one." Now where is that rascal? France is there. This is going on. British Empire means bring money, hook or crook, in London, and you get the title, "lord," "baron," this... This was their policy.
Prabhupāda: The lower class, although the country has good facilities not to become lower class, still, voluntarily they are hippies, lower class. They are lying on the street. Although he has got very good opportunity to become first class, but he is lying on the street. Why? What is answer? British Empire, London, one is lying on the bench. New York, lying on the bench. There is no sufficient clothing? Why? Actually, he can live very comfortably, but why he's living in that condition? What is answer?
Prabhupāda: They could understand what is what. Otherwise, how they were managing this big empire? Very intelligent, there is no doubt about it. And actually they were intelligent. When they were managing, we were happy, actually. Nobody can deny it. Although they were exploiting. But nobody could understand. Everyone was feeling happy. And as soon as they left, everyone is unhappy. That distinction I can give evidence, I can, from my personal experience. Things were very, very nice. Calcutta, oh, it was so nice city. Now it is hell. It is same Calcutta. Why it is now hell? Hidden(?) garden, that was a nice garden. So... Everywhere hell, only hell. Calcutta was considered the nicest city in India, better than Bombay, but it has become now hell. The streets, especially those quarters in our temple.
Hari-śauri: I think Calcutta was voted the second dirtiest city in the world.
Prabhupāda: Yes. Ācchā? Just see. And it was next to London. People used to say, "In the British Empire, first London, second Calcutta." And now it is...?
Prabhupāda: On the whole, during British time, people were happy, that I can... The thing is that Britishers were little afraid that "If the government is not good, it will go against our credit, that we may agitate." So they were careful to see that people are happy. But here nobody's careful. Everyone thinks "I'm in my own country. Whatever I do, it is all right." They were conscious, that "We are foreigners. If the management is not good, then it will go against our credit and it will be difficult working such a big England empire." So they were little careful. But these rascals are not... Just like the governor, he was friendly, but what is the report? Did he say? Did not behave very nicely?
Prabhupāda: That Empire State Building.
Prabhupāda: Our India is not meant for exploiting others. Doing good to others, that is India's mission. Our teachers, our ācāryas, do not teach us "Go and exploit others and bring money"—British Empire. This is not India.
Prabhupāda: And what is British Empire? British Empire could not occupy the whole world. We are occupying the whole world.
Prabhupāda: That's all right. We are trying to expand our empire, and it is already done all over the world.
Prabhupāda: You also explain, that British Empire expanded by military strength. And we are expanding by Ratha-yātrā. We are expanding our empire simply by Ratha-yātrā.
Prabhupāda: They admitted, "Rival to Nelson Column" in Guardian even. So who is strong enough? We are stronger than British Empire. Simply by Ratha-yātrā we are conquering. And actually that is being done. What I have got strength? Forty rupees beginning. Simply Hare Kṛṣṇa and Ratha-yātrā, that's all. That's a fact. They can see, they have got eyes.
Prabhupāda: Yes. They expanded their empire. Where is that empire now? The expansion of empire began during Victoria's time. Victoria's time.
Prabhupāda: They're very, martial race. Practically, the Britishers expanded their empire with these Sikh soldiers and Gurkha soldiers.
Prabhupāda: Sikhs are very brave. They're martial. And another martial race, Jats. They are kṣatriyas. Oh, they can fight... When Britishers possessed India they organized this military with Sikhs especially, Jats, and Gurkhas. And they expanded their empire, Burma, Ceylon, Africa, all these British Empire possessions. And not only that, they fought two big world wars with these Sikhs soldiers. They conquered over this Mesopotamia, Middle East.
Prabhupāda: Now, after losing India, they have no more British Empire. Because they cannot maintain without Indian soldiers. Therefore they voluntarily left.
Prabhupāda: How is it possible? The British Empire was established on management. They did not bring men from England. Few managers, that's all. That is called management. One man can control hundreds and thousands of men, that is management. (long pause) Locally attracted. These Britishers came here and they introduced this zamindari system.
Prabhupāda: First of all friendship, and that established them. And then they began to create enmity. Hindus against Muslim, Muslim... They wanted to stay. When they forgot this idea that if they wanted to stay for the benefit of the people, nobody could drive them away. But their policy was for the benefit of the English people. Therefore they failed. Lord Curzon, he says a statement that, "If you want to stay in India, rule India for the benefit of Indian people. You can keep control over India. They are fond of kings, so one member of the royal family can become king here and they'll earn respect and honor (from) these Indian people. But rule for their benefit. Then British Empire will stay." Very good advice, but his advice was not taken. You have seen Lord Curzon's statue near the, in front of the Victoria Memorial Hall?
Prabhupāda: Then whole civilization finished. Even theoretically taken, no smoking, no gambling, no intoxication, no illicit sex, their whole civilization is finished. Lord Zetland said... Not only that, one Sir Valentine Chiro (?), I think, Sir Valentine Chiro, British, important, when Gandhi started non-cooperation. So he remarked that "If Gandhi's movement, this non-cooperation movement is one percent successful, then we will have to leave it." And actually that happened. Because they were ruling over India by Indian cooperation. Gandhi struck to the right point, non-cooperation, and he scented the danger, and he remarked at that time, that if one percent of the Indian people non-cooperate then we are, our British empire finished. So there are intelligent persons, they are thinking in their own way that this movement is so strong against this modern material civilization, if it is allowed to spread then our whole civilization, whole economic structure will be finished.
Prabhupāda: They wanted for graft, to manipulate their empire. They wanted some subordinate hands. They never wanted to give real education.
1977 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: My family life was in Allahabad, 1923 to 1936 continually. I used to come to Bombay from Allahabad for business. And I was staying in that hotel, Empire Hindu Hotel. Yes, very nice. At that time it was very nice.
Prabhupāda: Yes. India did not know what is tea. They started the tea gardens, and they recruited labors from India. We have seen in our childhood that Mahatma Gandhi Road. When I was standing on the gate, five hundred, six hundred laborers recruited from Bihar. Bihar and Orissa, these two provinces very poor. Even all these colonies, just like Trinidad... Where is Englishmen? If the laborers and Indians were sent... Therefore we find in Mauritius, in Africa, so many Indians. Their kingdom, first of all it was conquered by Indian soldiers. Then, when it was to be organized-Indian coolies, Indian laborers, Indian guards. They have got men and money, but they expanded Empire. So I am doing the same business: American money, American... (laughs) I am also a great politician.
Prabhupāda: Anything. Śarīra nā mahāśaya, yā saha mithaya saha (?) There is a Bengali proverb that the body is very nice. If you practice something, it will tolerate. Jaya. (devotees offer obeisances) (break) And whatever plan he's making, it will be all frustrated. That is the whole history. Big, big emperor, big, big politicians, they have tried. Roman Empire, the Carthagian Empire, Greece Empire, Egyptian Empire, and Mogul Empire, British Empire—all frustrated. It will never be successful. For a few days, hundred, two hundred years or five hundred years, it may go on. So real plan is how to become Kṛṣṇa conscious. Then everything is successful. Ahaṅkāra-vimūḍhātmā kartāham iti manyate (BG 3.27). These rascals, on account of false prestigious position, trying to be happy without God... That is not possible. Throughout the history you study. So many rascals have tried. The Napoleon, the Hitler, the Gandhi, this, that. What they have achieved? Nothing. If we honestly study their lives and activities, what they have achieved? Hm? Do you think they have achieved anything?
Prabhupāda: No, they know it. Study the whole history of the world. What the big, big leaders have done? They are not new leaders. Before them, all over the world there were big, big leaders. Napoleon promised so many things. At last, he had to drink horse's urine and die. When he was captured by the Englishmen he wanted water and he was given horse urine. Envisioned, "I shall make my promise, the most important stage." The Britishers, so many, Gladstone, Churchill, Lloyd George(?), British Empire. Have they done any benefit? Indira made plan, Nehru family will be English terrorist. Now what is her position? So they studying history. Still, they are promising. Mūḍha.
Prabhupāda: Kada bataka.(?) Everyone has to eat. The Maharastrians, they eat, even the brāhmaṇas. In 1927, I came to Bombay and stayed in the Empire Hindu Hotel. I think it is still there. Very nice hotel. So it is under Maharastrians. Very neat and clean everything. Gave me onions. "What is this? Onions?" I was surprised. "I don't eat."
Prabhupāda: Britain is... They are shopkeepers. Hitler gave them this title, "Shopkeepers' Nation." That was his determination: "The shopkeepers' nation, I shall turn them again to be shopkeepers, not the empire holder." That he did. Although he was finished-Germany was finished on account of this—but they executed their determination, British empire finished. That they did. After the second war, British.
Prabhupāda: Yes. So British Empire, so many things in London, he all removed to Canada.
Prabhupāda: Yes. So let them be trained up and then go there and follow our instruction and develop. In the meantime you can take it. The Lord Clyde, a crewman in the ship, he developed a British empire in India, organization. He's an insignificant person. He established British empire.
Prabhupāda: Shaven hair. So why you should be victimized by keeping hair? What victory you will gain? Conquer over the whole world, Roman Empire, by keeping hair? Hippie mentality, that's all. That is within the core of the heart. As soon as get some opportunity... Just like during summer season the field appears to be dried up. And as soon as there is some rain, oh, it is green, immediately green. So things are already there. Hm? Is it not?
Prabhupāda: England, nonsense number one. Worst false prestige, England. In that respect, other countries are better. They had a British Empire. They are still puffed up. And they will stay there to continue British Empire. Now they are earning money for eating, showing British Parliament House. Now there is no business.
Prabhupāda: (Bengali) (Bengali conversation) Britishers made a mistake. They made a empire, very good, but they did not rule for the people. They wanted to rule over the world for their own sake, London. Their policy was all big, big brain from England should go outside, earn money and bring in London, exploit. Therefore it is... Otherwise it was a very grand plan. They were very nice. This was suggested by one of their viceroy in India, Lord Curzon, that "India is a vast country, very cultured country. Don't try to exploit them. Better send one royal family member to become king here and rule as one empire. Don't discriminate." The others did not like the idea. "Make England's men king in India. The people in general, they like king. And rule over them and have good relationship." These rascals, they did not like.
Prabhupāda: Suppose I have conquered Bombay. Then I go to Karachi. In the meantime, Bombay is lost. That was being done, Alexander the Great. Means no proper management. Just like British Empire lost. They could not manage. So long they were managing well, it was going on.
Prabhupāda: (Bengali) There is a... There was a great Bengali poet. He was very rich man, Micheal, Madhusūdana Datta. So he went to England, and because he was extravagant, he spent all his money. So he was in difficulty. He begged some money from his countrymen, help him. But nobody gave him. Only there was a big paṇḍita, Isvaracandra Vidyasagar. He gave him the money. He thought that "Such a big man is in need of money. Let me... He may pay or not." So after receiving that money, he thanked Isvaracandra Vidyasagar, that "You have got courage of an Englishman and the heart of a Bengali mother." He was poet, so he gave these two examples: the courage of an Englishman and the heart of a Bengali mother. So you are Englishman. You are famous for your forefathers' courage to expand British Empire. The America is also your creation. But everything in this material world deteriorates. That is not fault. But Englishmen were, at least formerly, famous for courage, enthusiasm, expansion of prestige. This Lord Clive was a crewman in a ship, and he established British Empire.
Prabhupāda: At least for few months I can continue. This is first business. Do it. And another point, that formerly the Britishers expanded empire. Now we have got better service. They... You expand the empire of consciousness, Kṛṣṇa consciousness. This is also the same view, but it is spiritual. Kṛṣṇa has given you the ability. Do it enthusiastically with the courage of an Englishman and the heart of a Bengali mother.