Prabhupāda: Well, in America there are so many things which requires thorough reformation. And this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is that. When I went to your country, so I saw these boys and girls, they're living like friends. I said that "You cannot live as friends; you must get yourself married."
Bob: Many people see that even marriage is not sacred. So they find no desire to... Because people get married, and if things are not proper they get divorced so very easy...
Prabhupāda: Yes, that also.
Bob: ...that some people feel to get married is not meaningful.
Prabhupāda: No, the idea is that marriage is not sacred. They think marriage is a legalized prostitution. They think like that, but marriage is not that. Even that Christian paper, what is that, "Watch...?"
Prabhupāda: "Watchtower." It has criticized, one priest has allowed the marriage between man to man, homosex. So these things are going on. They take it purely for prostitution. That's all. So therefore people are thinking, "What is the use of keeping a regular prostitution at a cost of heavy expenditure? Better not to have this."
Śyāmasundara: You use that example of the cow and the market?
Prabhupāda: Yes, when the milk is available in the market, what is the use of keeping a cow? (laughter) It is a very abominable condition. In the western countries I have seen. Here also, in India, gradually it is coming to be so. (Speaks to someone in Bengali) (break) ...movement is especially meant for making human life, reaching the real goal.
Bob: The real goal?
Prabhupāda: The real goal of life.
Bob: Is the real goal of life to know God?
Bob: So that is the real goal, to know God.
Prabhupāda: Yes. Go back to home, back to Godhead. That is real goal of life. Just like the water coming from the sea as cloud falls down as rain and the actual goal is to flow down the river and again go to the sea. So we have come from God. Now we are embarrassed in this material life. Therefore the aim should be how to get out of this embarrassment and go back to home, back to Godhead. This is real goal of life.
- mām upetya tu kaunteya
- duḥkhālayam aśāśvatam
- nāpnuvanti mahātmānaḥ
- saṁsiddhiṁ paramāṁ gatāḥ
- (BG 8.15)
That is the version of Bhagavad-gītā. "If anyone comes back to Me," mām upetya kaunteya... Mām upetya tu kaunteya duḥkhālayam aśāśvatam, nāpnuvanti, "he does not come back again." Where? In this place, duḥkhālayam aśāśvatam (BG 8.15). This place is the abode of miseries. Everyone knows, but he has become fooled, befooled by so-called leaders. This is miserable life, material life. So duḥkhālayam... Kṛṣṇa says, God says, that this place is duḥkhālayam, it is a place of miseries. And that also aśāśvatam. You cannot make a compromise, "All right, let it be miserable. I shall remain as American or Indian." No. That you also cannot do. You cannot remain as American. You may think that you are born in America, you are very happy. But you cannot remain as American for long. You'll have to be kicked out of the place, and next life you do not know. Therefore it is duḥkhālayam aśāśvatam (BG 8.15). That is our philosophy.
Bob: But when you have some knowledge of God, then life is not so miserable.
Prabhupāda: No, some knowledge will not do. You must have perfect knowledge. Janma karma me divyaṁ yo jānāti tattvataḥ (BG 4.9). Tattvataḥ means perfect. That perfect knowledge is being taught in the Bhagavad-gītā. So, we are giving chance to the human society to learn Bhagavad-gītā as it is and make his life perfect. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. What your science says about the transmigration of the soul?
Bob: I think that science cannot deny it, by scientific methods cannot deny it, or does scientific method show it. Science does not know of it.
Prabhupāda: Therefore I say, imperfect science.
Bob: Science may, though, say something. It is said in science that energy is never destroyed. It is just changed.
Prabhupāda: That's all right, but how the energy is working in future, that science does not know.
Prabhupāda: How the energy is diverted, how by different manipulation the energy is working differently. Just like electric energy, by different handling it is creating heater and it is creating cooler. Just opposite. But the same electric energy. So similarly, these energies, living energy, how it is being directed, which way it is going, how it is fructifying in the next life, so they do not know. They do not know. And in the Bhagavad-gītā it is very simplified. Vāsāṁsi jīrṇāni yathā vihāya (BG 2.22). You are covered by this dress, by this shirt. When this shirt is not workable you change it. Similarly, this body is just like shirt and coat, when it is no longer workable, we have to change.
Bob: What is the "we" that has to change? What is constant between one life to the next?
Prabhupāda: That is soul. That is soul, "I", what you are speaking, "you", what I am speaking, identification, ātmā, or soul.
Bob: My soul is different than your soul?
Prabhupāda: Yes. You are individual soul, I am individual soul.
Bob: But you have removed yourself from karmic influences. If I was to remove myself from karmic influences, would our souls be the same or different?
Prabhupāda: Soul is the same. Just like you are under certain conception of life at the present moment. Just like your these countrymen. They were under certain conception of life. But by training they have taken another conception of life. So the ultimate training is how to become Kṛṣṇa conscious. That is perfection.
Bob: If two people are Kṛṣṇa conscious, is their soul the same?
Prabhupāda: Soul is always the same.
Bob: In each person. In each person is it the same?
Prabhupāda: Yes. (break) Soul, as spirit soul, pure soul, they are all equal. Even in animal. Therefore it is said, paṇḍitāḥ sama-darśinaḥ (BG 5.18), means those who are actually learned, they do not see the outward covering, either human being or animal.
Bob: Oh, then they are all equal and the same, or just equal? Are they equal and the same, or are they just equal?
Prabhupāda: No, equal and the same. Qualitatively and quantitatively.
Śyāmasundara: I thought there was also a difference.
Śyāmasundara: Isn't there also individuality and difference?
Prabhupāda: Their individuality becomes different in accordance with the development of consciousness.
Śyāmasundara: Oh. The soul before the development of consciousness...
Prabhupāda: Yes. So therefore, when one comes to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, then there is no difference. (break) Because their aim is at that time how to... (break) ...and that is nice.
Bob: But they are the same because they are flowers.
Bob: In that sense.
Prabhupāda: Same. That is acintya-bhedābheda philosophy. That everything is one and different simultaneously.
Bob: Now, if I may ask another question on this?
Bob: The soul may be, I have considered, somewhat a part of God. But my soul I do not feel, but at times I think I feel God. It's... I'm here maybe, and you may say God is here. If the soul is inside me, then should I be able to feel God inside me? Not all of God I mean, but a...
Prabhupāda: Part of God.
Bob: Yeah. Not to mean to say that I feel I am God, but to mean to say I feel that I am God...
Prabhupāda: (Speaks to someone in Bengali) (break)