A system of human civilization that does not promote varṇa and āśrama is nothing but a polished animal society. Indulgence in sex life by a man or woman living single is never acceptable in human society. A man should strictly follow the principles of brahmacārī life or, with the permission of the spiritual master, should get married. Single life with illicit sex is animal life, for the animals have no such institution as marriage.
Permission from the spiritual master
- 1 Srimad-Bhagavatam
- 2 Sri Caitanya-caritamrta
- 3 Other Books by Srila Prabhupada
- 4 Lectures
- 5 Conversations and Morning Walks
SB Canto 3
The principle of brahmacarya is celibacy. There are two kinds of brahmacārīs. One is called naiṣṭhika-brahmacārī, which means one who takes a vow of celibacy for his whole life, whereas the other, the upakurvāṇa-brahmacārī, is a brahmacārī who takes the vow of celibacy up to a certain age. For example, he may take the vow to remain celibate up to twenty-five years of age; then, with the permission of his spiritual master, he enters married life. Brahmacarya is student life, the beginning of life in the spiritual orders, and the principle of brahmacarya is celibacy. Only a householder can indulge in sense gratification or sex life, not a brahmacārī. Svāyambhuva Manu requested Kardama Muni to accept his daughter, since Kardama had not taken the vow of naiṣṭhika-brahmacarya. He was willing to marry, and the suitable daughter of a high royal family was presented.
SB Canto 7
All the rules and regulations apply equally to the householder and the sannyāsī, the member of the renounced order of life. The gṛhastha, however, is given permission by the spiritual master to indulge in sex during the period favorable for procreation.
It is sometimes misunderstood that a gṛhastha, a householder, is permitted to indulge in sex at any time. This is a wrong conception of gṛhastha life. In spiritual life, whether one is a gṛhastha, vānaprastha, sannyāsī or brahmacārī, everyone is under the control of the spiritual master. For brahmacārīs and sannyāsīs there are strong restrictions on sexual indulgence. Similarly, there are strong restrictions for gṛhasthas. Gṛhasthas should indulge in sex life only in accordance with the order of the guru. Therefore it is mentioned here that one must follow the orders of the spiritual master (guru-vṛttir vikalpena). When the spiritual master orders, the gṛhastha may accept sex life. This is confirmed in Bhagavad-gītā (7.11). Dharmāviruddho bhūteṣu kāmo 'smi: indulgence in sex life without disobedience to the religious rules and regulations constitutes a religious principle. The gṛhastha is allowed to indulge in sex life during the period favorable for procreation and in accordance with the spiritual master's order. If the spiritual master's orders allow a gṛhastha to engage in sex life at a particular time, then the gṛhastha may do so; otherwise, if the spiritual master orders against it, the gṛhastha should abstain. The gṛhastha must obtain permission from the spiritual master to observe the ritualistic ceremony of garbhādhāna-saṁskāra. Then he may approach his wife to beget children, otherwise not. A brāhmaṇa generally remains a brahmacārī throughout his entire life, but although some brāhmaṇas become gṛhasthas and indulge in sex life, they do so under the complete control of the spiritual master. The kṣatriya is allowed to marry more than one wife, but this also must be in accordance with the instructions of the spiritual master. It is not that because one is a gṛhastha he may marry as many times as he likes and indulge in sex life as he likes. This is not spiritual life. In spiritual life, one must conduct one's whole life under the guidance of the guru. Only one who executes his spiritual life under the direction of the spiritual master can achieve the mercy of Kṛṣṇa. Yasya prasādād bhagavat-prasādaḥ **. If one desires to advance in spiritual life but he acts whimsically, not following the orders of the spiritual master, he has no shelter. Yasyāprasādān na gatiḥ kuto 'pi. Without the spiritual master's order, even the gṛhastha should not indulge in sex life.
SB Cantos 10.14 to 12 (Translations Only)
Thus receiving Their guru's permission to leave, the two Lords returned to Their city on Their chariot, which moved as swiftly as the wind and resounded like a cloud.
A brahmacārī who has completed his Vedic education and desires to enter household life should offer proper remuneration to the spiritual master, bathe, cut his hair, put on proper clothes, and so on. Then, taking permission from the guru, he should go back to his home.
Having received the order of the Vaiṣṇavas but being anxious within my heart, I went to the temple of Madana-mohana in Vṛndāvana to ask His permission also.
A Vaiṣṇava always follows the order of guru and Kṛṣṇa. Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta was written by Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī by their mercy. Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī considered all the devotees that have been mentioned to be his preceptor gurus, or spiritual masters, and Madana-gopāla (Śrī Madana-mohana vigraha) is Kṛṣṇa Himself. Thus he took permission from both of them, and when he received the mercy of both guru and Kṛṣṇa, he was able to write this great literature, Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta. This example should be followed. Anyone who attempts to write about Kṛṣṇa must first take permission from the spiritual master and Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is situated in everyone's heart, and the spiritual master is His direct external representative. Thus Kṛṣṇa is situated antar-bahiḥ, within and without. One must first become a pure devotee by following the strict regulative principles and chanting sixteen rounds daily, and when one thinks that he is actually on the Vaiṣṇava platform, he must then take permission from the spiritual master, and that permission must also be confirmed by Kṛṣṇa from within his heart. Then, if one is very sincere and pure, he can write transcendental literature, either prose or poetry.
Regarding Śaṅkarācārya, it is understood that he was born in the year 608 of the Śakābda Era, in the month of Vaiśākha, on the third day of the waxing moon, in a place in South India known as Kālāḍi. His father's name was Śivaguru, and he lost his father at an early age. When Śaṅkarācārya was only eight years old, he completed his study of all scriptures and took sannyāsa from Govinda, who was residing on the banks of the Narmadā. After accepting sannyāsa, Śaṅkarācārya stayed with his spiritual master for some days. He then took his permission to go to Vārāṇasī, and from there he went to Badarikāśrama, where he stayed until his twelfth year.
After taking permission from his sannyāsa-guru, Svarūpa Dāmodara went to Nīlācala and accepted the shelter of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. Then all day and night, in ecstatic love of Kṛṣṇa, he enjoyed transcendental mellows in the loving service of the Lord.
There are thirty-two offenses to the Deity that should be avoided. (1) One should not enter the temple in a vehicle. Shoes and slippers should be removed before entering the temple. (2) One should offer obeisances as soon as he sees the Deity. (3) One should enter the temple after taking a bath. In other words, one should be very clean. (4) One should not offer obeisances to the Lord with one hand. (5) One should not circumambulate demigods before the Deities. (6) One should not spread his legs before the Deity. (7) One should not sit down before the Deity with his legs crossed, nor should one touch his legs with his hands. (8) One should not lie down before the Deity. (9) One should not eat before the Deity. (10) One should not speak lies before the Deity. (11) One should not speak very loudly before the Deity. (12) One should not talk nonsense before the Deity. (13) One should not cry before the Deity. (14) One should not deal with others before the Deity. (15) One should not utter harsh words before the Deity. (16) One should not cover himself with a blanket. (17) One should not talk enviously of others before the Deity. (18) One should not praise others before the Deity. (19) One should not use slang before the Deity. (20) One should not pass air before the Deity. (21) One should not neglect the sixty-four items of Deity worship. (22) One should not eat anything not offered to the Deity. (23) One should not neglect offering seasonal fruits as soon as they are available. (24) One should always offer fresh, untouched fruit to the Deity. (25) One should not sit with his back toward the Deity. (26) One should not offer obeisances to others before the Deity. (27) One should not sit near the Deity without taking the spiritual master's permission. (28) One should not be proud to hear himself praised before the Deity. (29) One should not blaspheme the demigods. (30) One should not be unkind to others before the Deities. (31) One should observe all festivals in the temple. (32) One should not fight or quarrel before the Deity.
Other Books by Srila Prabhupada
Krsna, The Supreme Personality of Godhead
The brahmacārī is taught that this is the position: "Don't be knotted with this material world." But still, if he cannot do that, then with the permission of the spiritual master, he accepts a wife. That is gṛhastha life. But that also not for many years. Say for 25 years. After 25 years he will remain a student brahmacārī, then you accept one wife according to religious ritualistic ceremony, but no illicit sex. That is not allowed. Bachelor daddy is not allowed. That is very dangerous.
So how we shall learn all these things? Mahat-sevā. Go to mahat, mahānta, the guru. Serve him. Tad viddhi praṇipātena paripraśnena sevayā (BG 4.34). You cannot challenge like a nonsense. You have to engage yourself to the service. That is the beginning. Brahmacārī is indicated, "Go to gurukula." And you may be a king's son or a very learned brāhmaṇa's son, it doesn't matter. You serve your guru just like a menial servant. This is the instruction. This is the first education. Go to gurukula and serve the mahat guru, the broad-minded guru, just like a menial servant. What is that? You go collect everything for guru, alms, and do not claim proprietorship. It is guru's property. Whatever you collect, that is not your property. That is guru's property. And go to gurukula, and when guru will ask you, "My dear boy, please come and take your prasādam," then you'll take. If guru forgets to call you, you should fast. This is gurukula. Not that "I am hungry. There is foodstuff. Let me eat." No. Without permission of guru you cannot touch anything. This is the injunction.
Revatīnandana: Yes, in Europe they used to sell indulgences. For a certain amount of money you get a certain indulgence.
Prabhupāda: Here also. The priests allow. The guru allow. The professional guru... His disciple will come: "Sir, doctor has advised me to take fish. Without taking fish my eyesight will be lost. He has advised. So what to do? You have asked me not to take fish. You said." "Oh, all right, I give you permission." He gives his permission. This is going on. "I give you per..." Because the guru sees that "If I say no, this rich disciple will be lost. So better let him do whatever he likes. I get my fees. That's all." This is going on. That statement of my Guru Mahārāja, "the society of the cheaters and the cheated," is a fact everywhere.
So do you think that sādhu, those who are sādhu, they are pleased when a person is killed? Not ordinary person. He is giving very nice example. Modeta sādhur api vṛścika sarpa-hatyā (SB 7.9.14). Vṛścika means scorpion and sarpa means snake. Naturally, whenever a scorpion is found or a snake is out, every man is prepared to kill it. Every man. "Oh, here is a snake. Kill it." When I was in Allahabad, in my bed there was a snake. I do not know how it came, but I informed to the servants, and they came with all stick immediately. So when the bed seat was taken away, it was under the, I mean to say, quilt. So that snake was there, and from the face of the snake I could understand that she was, it was so afraid. He could understand that "Now I'm going to be killed by so many people. They have come." So I told them that "Don't kill this poor fellow. Better take it and send it to the forest." But they took it away, but I later on understood they killed it. So once I saw in our Māyāpur, Lord Caitanya's birthplace, so a snake was going, a black snake with... In Bengal there are many snakes. So my Guru Mahārāja was on the upstair and everyone asked the permission whether this should be killed. He said immediately, "Yes. He should be killed." So at that time I thought that "How Guru Mahārāja ordered for killing the snake?" Then, after so many years, when I began to read Bhāgavatam and came to this passage, Prahlāda Mahārāja assertion, modeta sādhur api vṛścika sarpa-hatyā, then I thought that "My Guru Mahārāja did right thing." Here also, modeta. Even a sādhu. Then why a sādhu is pleased when a sarpa, a scorpion, or snake is killed? The reason is that these two kinds of creatures, they bite innocent persons without any fault. Without any fault. Or for little fault. The venomous snake. Immediately. By nature they are so angry and so envious that they feel pleasure if somebody is bitten and immediately die. That is their nature. Therefore killing a snake and scorpion means to save it from so many sinful activities. Because it is nature. It will kill so many persons, so many animals, because its nature is innocent person, bite innocent person, kill him. So if there is seen by killing another, it will continue. Better to kill it to stop its sinful activities. That is the reason here it is said, modeta sādhur api.
So we cannot avoid in our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. That was the problem from the very beginning. In India there is restriction between men and women, free intermingling, but in your country there is no such restriction. Therefore I got my disciples married. They criticize me that I have become a marriage-maker. Anyway, I wanted at least to regulate. That is required. Dharmāviruddhaḥ kāmo 'smi. Kṛṣṇa also says. Now, a married man also can be brahmacārī. If a married man stick to one wife, and before sex, if he takes permission from his spiritual master, then he is brahmacārī. Not whimsically. When the spiritual master orders him that "Now you can beget a child," then he is brahmacārī. Śrīla Vira-Rāghava Ācārya, he has described in his comment that there are two kinds of brahmacārī. One brahmacārī is naiṣṭhikī-brahmacārī; he doesn't marry. And another brahmacārī is... Although he marries, he is fully under control of the spiritual master, even for sex. He is also brahmacārī.
Everything, all collection, either in cash or kind, that is for the benefit of guru, not the personal benefit. No. Therefore only the gṛha, I mean to say, sannyāsīs and the brahmacārīs, they can beg. They can collect, not others. That is prohibited. Sāyaṁ prātaś cared bhaikṣyam gurave tan nivedayet.
Now, as soon as you bring the collection before the guru... It was meant for the guru, so it is guru's property. It is not your property. "Then what I shall do? Everything is given to guru. Then what shall I do?" That is said: bhuñjīta yady anujñātaḥ. Now, these things will be prepared. The brahmacārī will collect dahl, rice, attar, and everything. It will be prepared, offered to the Deity. That's a fact. But if by mistake guru forgets to call a particular disciple—"My dear son, please come, take your prasādam"—then he should not take prasādam. "Guru has forgotten, so I shall not go and take, myself, the foodstuff. I shall fast." This is brahmacārī. Here it is said, bhuñjīta yady anujñāto. Everything is there, prasādam is ready, but you can eat if you are ordered by the spiritual master. This is called tapasya. Not that "Guru is not here and so much foodstuff... Let me eat sumptuously and sleep twenty-four hours." This is not brahmacārī. We should be very careful. Without order of guru... Of course, our students are trained up. They ask permission. But here it is said that he should not ask permission even. If guru calls him, then he can take; otherwise guru has forgotten to call him somehow or other, so he should starve, or he should fast on that day.
This sannyāsa order, as we have accepted, it is compulsory regulative principle of Vedic way of life. The first twenty-five years brahmacārī, strict life of celibacy, student life, without any sex indulgence completely, up to twenty-five years. Then gṛhastha. That is not for also all. If somebody is unable to remain a brahmacārī all through, then the spiritual master gives him permission to marry a suitable girl and become a householder. This is called gṛhastha life. Then, up to fifty years, he can indulge in householder life. Householder life, according to Vedic civilization, is a sort of license for sense gratification. But not for all the time. The injunction is pañcaśordhvaṁ vanaṁ vrajet. Just after your fiftieth year you must give up, retire from householder. That is called vānaprastha. Vānaprastha means you can take your wife with you and travel all over the world in places of holy pilgrimage just to give up your attachment for family life. In this way, when one is completely detached from family affection, then he sends back his wife to the elderly children to take care of her and he takes sannyāsa, renounced order of life. This renounced order of life means dedicate completely for the service of the Lord.
Conversations and Morning Walks
1974 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: In a, in the Western countries, I had to sometimes do something which I should not have done. But I've done it to bring so many souls to Kṛṣṇa.
Brahmānanda: The preaching necessitates that.
Prabhupāda: Yes. Because if there is no other alternative, what can I do? In the beginning I had no disciples. So I was cooking myself. So one gentleman, he... Later on, he became my disciple. He gave me some place. I was cooking. And in the refrigerator, I saw there was meat. (laughs) So I asked: "What is this?" He said, "It is for cats. I don't take meat." "All right. (laughter) I'll do (?)." So of course, I stayed there for three, four days. And if I cry, "Oh, I have violated my rules and regulations..." Rules and regulations can be violated when there is urgent necessity of service, not whimsically or for one's sense gratification. And that is, of course, in our present..., with the permission of the spiritual master, not one should think, "Oh, I have become so much great devotee, I can violate all the rules and regulations." No, you cannot. If there is need of violating rules and regulations, you must take permission. Now we have no temple. Under the circumstances, we are doing that. So you construct the temple as soon as possible so that people may not criticize you.
1975 Conversations and Morning Walks
Devotee (2): One Māyāvād sannyāsī, he wrote a book, "Be Your Own Guru," and he said you can...
Prabhupāda: So why do you write book?
Devotee (2): Yes, he is being guru. He is teaching them to do without a guru.
Prabhupāda: Let everyone become his guru. Why you write books?
Indian man: ...one book that one should not write a book without the permission of a spiritual master.
Prabhupāda: Yes. You'll find in today's tape that Prahlāda Mahārāja recommending, that "Spiritual life begins by guru-śuśruṣaḥ, by serving guru."
1976 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: Vedas, when Lord Buddha wanted stop animal killing, these rascals came with Vedas. "Vedas there is sacrifice, there is animal killing." So he thought that these rascals will create botheration. By bringing Vedas, there is... He said, "I don't care for it."
- veda nā māniyā bauddha haya ta nāstika
- vedāśraya nāstikya-vāda bauddhake adhika
Similarly, these rascals are giving evidence of Rūpa Gosvāmī's advice, that "Here is Rādhā-kuṇḍa..." But whether you have followed other things.
Guest: Vāco vegaṁ manasaḥ...
Prabhupāda: Yes. Vāco vegaṁ manasaḥ krodha-vegaṁ, pṛthivīṁ sa śiṣyāt. Etān vegān yo viṣa... You are manipulated by the udara-vegam, upastha-vegam. First there is test: etān vegān yo viṣaheta dhīraḥ (NOI 1). Then for him Rādhā-kuṇḍa. Dhīras tatra na muhyati (BG 2.13). He has got three dozen sevā-dāsī, and living in Rādhā-kuṇḍa. My Guru Mahārāja wanted to publish Govinda-līlāmṛta. He asked permission of Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura. So first of all Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura, "I'll tell you some day." And when he reminded, he said, "Yes you can print one copy. If you are so much anxious to print it, print one copy. You'll read and you will see that you have printed. Not for distribution." So we are printing all these books for understanding properly. Not that "Here is Rādhā-kuṇḍa. Let us go." Jump over like monkey. "Here is rāsa-līlā. Immediately..."
Acyutānanda: Even in Kṛṣṇa book rāsa-līlā should not be told in public.
Prabhupāda: No, why? Kṛṣṇa book must be there, in the book must be there.
Acyutānanda: But in public...
Prabhupāda: But you should go gradually. You should go gradually. You first of all understand Kṛṣṇa, then kṛṣṇa-līlā. If you have not understood Kṛṣṇa, then you'll think Kṛṣṇa's rāsa-līlā is just like we mix with young women. And that becomes as polluted. Because they do not understand Kṛṣṇa. Manuṣyāṇāṁ sahasreṣu kaścid yatati siddhaye yatatām api siddhānām (BG 7.3). Kṛṣṇa understanding so easy? If you do not understand Kṛṣṇa how can you go to the Kṛṣṇa's confidential activities?
Acyutānanda: Some of the devotees, they said that it is for liberated souls. So they said, "Well, we are all liberated."
Prabhupāda: Yes. Liberated for going to hell.
|Compiled by||MadhuGopaldas + and Visnu Murti +|
|Completed sections||ALL +|
|Date of first entry||September 17, 0011 JL +|
|Date of last entry||September 20, 0011 JL +|
|Total quotes||19 +|
|Total quotes by section||BG: 0 +, SB: 4 +, CC: 4 +, OB: 1 +, Lec: 7 +, Conv: 3 + and Let: 0 +|