Nava-yauvana: Many people, when they see the devotees, they are confused, and they think that the devotees are engaged in some kind of ritualistic activity; the chanting and practices of devotees are ritualistic, and they compare it to their own rituals and they don't see any distinction. So they see it as sectarian.
Prabhupāda: What they want?
Ātreya Ṛṣi: Some of them are not sincere, so they simply want to find fault, but those who are sincere can be encouraged to...
Harikeśa: They are all wanting material things. Like in Bhagavad-gītā, what is the verse, traiguṇya-viṣayā vedāḥ? Kṛṣṇa is asking Arjuna to rise above the scriptures, the flowery words of the Vedas.
Prabhupāda: They are not concerned with the Bhagavad-gītā. You cannot quote from Bhagavad-gītā to instruct these rascals. You have to talk with them with common sense. Their charge is, what is their charge? That you are engaged in ritualistic ceremonies?
Prabhupāda: So what they want us to do? If you don't want me to do this, then you must say what you want me to do. Is it not right? Suppose I am chanting. If you don't want me to chant, then what do you want me to do? The next question will be.
Jñānagamya: They want us to engage in sense gratification like they are engaged. That is what they want.
Prabhupāda: Want..., we want that, if you want me to do like you, then I want you to do like me. If you want me to accept your proposal, why you not accept my proposal?
Jñānagamya: Because if I think that sense gratification is better, then I...
Prabhupāda: That's all right, you think sense gratification is better, I think sense gratification is bad.
Jñānagamya: How can we tell the difference?
Prabhupāda: No, there is difference. Why you want me to do like you? Then I shall want you to do like me.
Jñānagamya: I say it because I want you to enjoy sense gratification.
Prabhupāda: No, I am not going to accept you, because you are not accepting my principles, so why shall I accept your principles?
Jñānagamya: But your principle is austere, it's not...
Prabhupāda: So that you say.
Jñānagamya: That's what they say.
Prabhupāda: They say, but we say you are bad that you are enjoying simply sense gratification.
Jñānagamya: They say what is wrong?
Prabhupāda: No, what is wrong to us. It is your judgement that we are wrong. So my judgement you are wrong. Who will decide who is right? Eh? Ātreya Ṛṣi?
Ātreya Ṛṣi: Jaya Śrīla Prabhupāda.
Prabhupāda: If you judge me I am wrong, I am judging you are wrong. So if you don't want me to do like this, I also don't want you, then where is the decision?
Ātreya Ṛṣi: Actually, these people mentally understand that sense gratification is wrong, but they are so polluted.
Prabhupāda: No, for argument's sake.
Ātreya Ṛṣi: Mental platform.
Prabhupāda: If you want me to do like you, I also want you to do like me. You cannot find fault with me by saying that I am not acting like you, sense gratification. If you are acting in your way, I am acting in my way.
Jñānagamya: It's relative.
Prabhupāda: But if you want philosophy, the aim of life, the destination of life, then we can talk, what is the destination of life, what is required. If you criticize me, then I can criticize you also.
Jñānagamya: Then we must take it to the absolute platform in order to actually have a sincere argument, to make a sincere decision.
Prabhupāda: Yes. There is no end of such things. Therefore unless one accepts a person guru, there is no need of talking. Tad vijñānārthaṁ sa gurum evābhigacchet (MU 1.2.12). Unless one accepts somebody as guru, the instruction will not be fruitful. Just like Arjuna is accepting Kṛṣṇa as guru. So long he was talking as friend, it was not effective. Arjuna therefore decided... Find out that verse, kārpaṇya-doṣopahata-svabhāvaḥ.
- pṛcchāmi tvāṁ dharma-sammūḍha-cetāḥ
- yac chreyaḥ syān niścitaṁ brūhi tan me
- śiṣyas te 'haṁ śādhi māṁ tvāṁ prapannam
- (BG 2.7)
"Now I am confused about my duty and have lost all composure because of weakness. In this condition I am asking You to tell me clearly what is best for me. Now I am Your disciple, and a soul surrendered unto You. Please instruct me."
Prabhupāda: This is the position. Unless one feels like that and asks somebody, a superior, accepts him as guru, there is no use talking. It will not be useful. This is the position. If the injunction is tad vijñānārthaṁ sa gurum evābhigacchet (MU 1.2.12), if anyone is interested to know about the transcendental subject matter, he must approach a guru, and unless one approaches a guru, he cannot understand, and if by force I become guru, he may not be interested. This is the position. But still, for a preacher, he has to do something against all odds. That is preaching. You cannot expect favorable position. Your question was that we go and they say like this, but you cannot expect that wherever you are going you'll find favorable situation to talk. That you must understand. But you have to preach, you have to create favorable situation. That is your duty.(?) You cannot expect. If they are not prepared to take good instruction. Where is that fan?
Hari-śauri: He's bringing it.
Prabhupāda: You cannot expect favorable situation. It is not possible. When I came in America, I never expected any favorable situation. I wrote that poetry in disappointment, that "Who will accept this?" That is the position. By Kṛṣṇa's grace, gradually it will become a favorable situation, but don't expect any favorable situation. You have to handle unfavorable situation and make favorable situation to preach. That is preaching. Any business. (to devotee fanning:) Just on the head. Just see, there is flies. So Nityānanda Prabhu, He went to preach to Jagāi-Mādhāi. There was no favorable situation. They were drunkards. They caused injury on the body of Nityānanda Prabhu. So this is preaching with only unfavorable situation. You cannot expect favorable situation. And still you have to preach. That is preaching.