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Even scientists have proved this consciousness is there in the tree also. If you cut the tree, there is sensation, feeling some pain, and this is recorded in the machine

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"Even scientists have proved this consciousness is there in the tree also. If you cut the tree, there is sensation, feeling some pain, and this is recorded in the machine"

Lectures

Bhagavad-gita As It Is Lectures

In this body there is something. That is consciousness. That is eternal. Just like if you or I pinch my body, I feel pain because the consciousness is there. But when the consciousness will not be there, if I cut my hand or cut your hand, you'll not protest. Even scientists have proved this consciousness is there in the tree also. If you cut the tree, there is sensation, feeling some pain, and this is recorded in the machine.
Lecture on BG 2.13 -- Public Lecture With German Translation Throughout -- Hamburg, September 10, 1969:

So go to God, or Kṛṣṇa, means you'll have to acquire your original, spiritual body. The spiritual body is already there, but we are now covered by this material body. So how we are eternal, that is described in the Bhagavad-gītā:

avināśi tu tad viddhi
yena sarvam idaṁ tatam
vināśam avyayasyāsya
na kaścit kartum arhati

The hint is given: the something which is spread all over the body, that is eternal. And what is that something? That something is our consciousness. Here it is stated, avināśi tu tad viddhi yena sarvam idaṁ tatam. In this body there is something. That is consciousness. That is eternal. Just like if you or I pinch my body, I feel pain because the consciousness is there. But when the consciousness will not be there, if I cut my hand or cut your hand, you'll not protest. Even scientists have proved this consciousness is there in the tree also. If you cut the tree, there is sensation, feeling some pain, and this is recorded in the machine. So here it is hinted that this consciousness is spread all over the body, that is eternal. The body is not eternal. As soon as the consciousness is gone, the body is dead. Therefore we should take care of the thing which is cons... That is the soul. On account of presence of the soul, there is consciousness.

So Kṛṣṇa further says in this connection, antavanta ime dehā nityasyoktāḥ śarīriṇaḥ (BG 2.18). This body... Deha means body. Antavat, it is by this material body, that is eternal. So that consciousness, or the rays of the soul, is described here. Na jāyate na mriyate vā kadācit. "This consciousness of the soul is never born, neither it is ever dead." Nāyaṁ bhūtvā bhavitā vā na bhūyaḥ. The soul and the consciousness has no past, present, or future. It is eternal. Aja. Aja means who does not take birth. Ajo nitya, eternal; śāśvata, ever-existing; ayaṁ purāṇa, the oldest. Na hanyate hanyamāne śarīre (BG 2.20). When the body is annihilated, the soul and consciousness is not annihilated. Just like when we sleep, our consciousness works in a different body, subtle body: mind, intelligence and ego. That we have got experience every night. We sleep on our bed, but my consciousness goes to other country or other place, and work in a different way. Again, when at the end of the dream we come back to this body, gross body. So death mean s when the consciousness does not come back again to this gross body and enters another gross body. This period is called death. So the subtle body, mind, is there. I know you have got mind, you know I have got my mind. But I cannot see your mind, you cannot see my mind. So there is intelligence also. I know you have got intelligence, you know I have got intelligence. But you cannot see my intelligence unless it is acted. I cannot see your intelligence unless it is acted. So the soul is covered by two kinds of dresses. Just like we are covered by the shirt and coat. Similarly, the covering of the shirt, or mind, intelligence and ego, this is one covering. And upon this there is a gross covering: earth, water, air, fire, like that. In this way we have got two covers. So our business is, because we are eternal, we should not remain in these temporary coverings. That temporary cov... So long we are bound up or encaged in these coverings, that is called conditioned life. So we are trying to become free from this conditioned life. Just like people are trying to go to the moon planet. The desire is there. But because the life is conditioned, he cannot go. Just like I am a foreigner. I have come to your country. I am conditioned by immigration law. There are so many conditions. One of the conditions is that I cannot live here forever unless it is sanctioned by the government.

So we are conditioned now. In this form of life, covered by the material elements, we are conditioned by the material nature. That is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā:

prakṛteḥ kriyamāṇāni
guṇaiḥ karmāṇi sarvaśaḥ
ahaṅkāra-vimūḍhātmā
kartāham iti manyate
(BG 3.27)

We are conditioned in every step by the laws of material nature. Still, foolishly, we are thinking we are free. This is foolishness. We are so much controlled by the material nature, exactly like a small child is pulled by the ear by his mother. "Come here." He comes here. "Go there," and goes. Just like a dog. A dog may feel very freedom, jumping. But as soon as the master says "Come here," he comes and immediately chained. This is our position. So that is our position, that we are completely under the clutches of material nature, and according to the modes of material nature, we are acting and changing our body in different species of life. So our real business in this human form of life is to get, try to accept the process by which we can get free from this conditioned life. The process is that we have to give up all our false consciousness. We are, under false consciousness, I am thinking, "I am Indian," you are thinking you are German, and the dog is thinking "I am dog," and cat is thinking "I am cat." So this bodily consciousness, bodily concept of life, will keep us conditioned within the material nature. Therefore our first business is how to get free from all these designations. Just like I am putting on this saffron cloth, but I am not saffron cloth. Or you are putting a red cloth or black coat, you are not that cloth. Within the coat, you are the person. Similarly, within the dress, I am the person. So at the present moment we are on the dress consciousness. "I am German dress," "I am Englishman dress," "I am Indian dress." "I am male dress," "I am female dress." So this is called conditioned life. So in this conditioned life we are accepting one type of body, and we are dying. Dying means giving up and being transmigrated, transferred to another body by the laws of material nature. It is not under my control. You cannot say that "After giving up this German body, I shall accept again another German body." That is not in your hands, sir. It is under the laws of nature. You cannot propose. You cannot force material nature. After this body I can get any other body. That is stated here. Tathā dehāntara-prāptiḥ (BG 2.13). Another form of body. That form of body may be any one of the 8,400,000 forms of body. Therefore, if we are actually intelligent, we should try for being awakened, or placed in our original body, the spiritual body. That will stop this constant change of body.