Prabhupāda: What it may be. First come to the platform of understanding. As soon as I think, I speak, this speaking, I'm thinking, is not coming from nirākāra.
Guest (4): But what is that "I"?
Prabhupāda: I means, what do you mean by I? I am person, you are person. When I say, "I say," you say that we are person. So how you can say nirākāra? It must be common knowledge. When I say, "I speak," that is not nirākāra. How it can be nirākāra? It is contradictory.
Guest (4): It is not contradictory.
Prabhupāda: Yes, it is contradictory. Unless you have got a personality, you cannot speak, you cannot think. So how it is nirākāra? That is my first point. Kṛṣṇa says, "aham." He is person. We worship Kṛṣṇa as person. He says, aham ādir hi devānām (Bg 10.2). That "aham," He's person. We are accepting Kṛṣṇa as person because he says aham ādir hi devānām.
- ahaṁ sarvasya prabhavo
- mattaḥ sarvaṁ pravartate
- iti matvā bhajante māṁ
- budhā bhāva-samanvitāḥ
- (BG 10.8)
He's person. Kṛṣṇa never said that "I am nirākāra." Where He has said? Can you quote any verse? When He says nirākāra, He says like this, mayā tatam idaṁ sarvam (BG 9.4). Mayā, by Me. Tatam idaṁ sarvam, everywhere, by My energy. Just like the sun-god. The sun-god is within the sun globe. His bodily luster is coming. The sun-god can say, "The sunshine is my bodily exposition." That is reasonable. Just like a big light, it has got exposition. Similarly... And that is confirmed in the śāstra. Yasya prabhā prabhavataḥ (Bs. 5.40). Yasya, the person.
- yasya prabhā prabhavato jagad-aṇḍa-koṭi-
- koṭiṣv aśeṣa-vasudhādi-vibhūti-bhinnam
- tad brahma niṣkalam anantam aśeṣa-bhūtaṁ
- govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi
- (Bs. 5.40)
So when Kṛṣṇa said, mayā tatam idam, mayā means, "I am there." But "I" is existing. That "I", person, is existing. Just like if I say that "It is I who has expanded, I am expanded all over the world by this Hare Kṛṣṇa movement," that's a fact. But that does not mean I am not a person. If I say that "I am, this Hare Kṛṣṇa movement means I am, I am spread by spreading this movement," that's a fact. But does it mean that I am imperson? That is, Kṛṣṇa says, mayā tatam idaṁ sarvaṁ jagad avyakta-mūrtinā. Avyakta. So the same example we can give you that in all my branches, 110 branches, they worship me as their guru. Mat-sthāni sarva-bhūtāni (BG 9.4). "Everything is existing on My management." Nāhaṁ teṣu avasthitaḥ. "But I am not there." It is a fact. All these 110 branches, they are going on under my direction, but not that I am present everywhere. But that does not mean I am not a person. So the supreme, the supreme manager, the supreme controller, how he can be nirākāra? That is my first question.
Dr. Patel: He means to say, sir, that the māyākāra is not there. But the divyākāra is there as we say. Let us understand him.
Prabhupāda: No, He... Nirākāra is there. So far His management power is going on, that is nirākāra. But that nirākāra does not mean that I am also nirākāra. That is the defect. The Supreme Person, it is confirmed by the śāstra. The Absolute Truth is person ultimately.
- vadanti tat tattva-vidas
- tattvaṁ yaj jñānam advayam
- brahmeti paramātmeti
- bhagavān iti śabdyate
- (SB 1.2.11)
So those who are simply captivated by the Brahman, nirākāra, they are in the, just in the beginning of knowledge. Their knowledge is not perfect. That is not Vedānta. That is knowledge, but it is not anta. And Vedānta means the ultimate knowledge. And that is explained in the Bhagavad-gītā. Vedaiś ca sarvair aham eva vedyaḥ (BG 15.15). If one does not know Kṛṣṇa, he's not a Vedāntist. That is my point . He does not know what is Vedānta. The veda-anta means Kṛṣṇa. Anta means the last word. The last word is brahmeti paramātmeti bhagavān iti śabdyate. Bhagavān. Unless one goes to the Supreme Lord Bhagavān, Kṛṣṇa, he's not a Vedāntist. That is my point. Veda means knowledge.
Dr. Patel: Śrī Śaṅkarācārya also said bhaja govindaṁ bhaja govindaṁ bhaja govindam...
Prabhupāda: That's all right. One who says... We are studying from our common sense. Veda means knowledge and anta means the last. And Kṛṣṇa says, vedaiś ca sarvair aham eva vedyaḥ (BG 15.15). So unless you know Kṛṣṇa, there is no question of Vedānta. There may be Veda...