Mr. Malhotra: Other traditions, guru disciple, then the disciple becomes guru, then disciple. The gurus may change.
Prabhupāda: They cannot change. If there are change of guru, the disciple acts, but does not, he'll never say that I have become equal or one with guru. That is not so.
Mr. Malhotra: I am thinking about this, Swamiji, that your Guru Mahārāja is preaching through you, and you are preaching through them.
Mr. Malhotra: So disciple is guru through his disciples.
Prabhupāda: That's all right. Evaṁ paramparā prāptam (BG 4.2). But that does not become, he has become. He may be representative of guru, representative of God, but it does not mean that he has become God.
Mr. Malhotra: But he becomes guru with his disciples.
Prabhupāda: That's alright.
Mr. Malhotra: Never equal to his guru.
Prabhupāda: Not equal, representative. I send one representative of this man, and he may be very expert, doing very good business, still he cannot be equal to me. He is acting as my representative, that's another thing. But not that he has become the original proprietor.
Mr. Malhotra: But as your disciples, you are taken as guru.
Prabhupāda: But they will never say that they have become equal to me. "I have advanced to be my guru." Never say. Just like this boy, he is offering obeisances. He may be expert in preaching more than me, but he knows that "I am subordinate." Otherwise how he shall offer obeisances? He can think, "Oh, now I am so learned. I am so advanced. Why shall I accept him as superior?" No. That continues. Even after my death, after my disappearance, he will offer obeisances to my picture.
Mr. Malhotra: But amongst his disciples he will be worshiped...
Prabhupāda: That's all right, but he remains a disciple of his guru. He will never say that "Now I have become guru, so I don't care for my guru." He will never say. Just like I am doing, but I am worshiping my guru still. So I remain subordinate to my guru, always. Even though I have become guru, still I am subordinate to my guru.
Mr. Malhotra: But qualitatively...
Prabhupāda: Qualitatively equal I have already said. Not quantitatively.
Mr. Malhotra: Qualitatively we are one. Quantitatively.
Prabhupāda: Why? Do you think a grain of gold and a big gold lump is same?
Mr. Malhotra: Gold, I think I am also gold.
Prabhupāda: No, gold that is accepted, quality. That if you say, this is explanation. You must have brain to understand. That a small particle of gold and a big gold, they are gold in quality but the big gold is millions of dollars and a small particle is few dollars. Just see this is accepted. This Māyāvāda theory has made people atheists, that "I am God, I am equal to God." Very bad theory.