Practical purposes

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SB Preface and Introduction

SB Introduction:

The Lord raised the question of cow-killing, and the Kazi properly answered Him by referring to the Koran. In turn the Kazi also questioned the Lord about cow sacrifice in the Vedas, and the Lord replied that such sacrifice as mentioned in the Vedas is not actually cow-killing. In that sacrifice an old bull or cow was sacrificed for the sake of receiving a fresh younger life by the power of Vedic mantras. But in the Kali-yuga such cow sacrifices are forbidden because there are no qualified brāhmaṇas capable of conducting such a sacrifice. In fact, in Kali-yuga all yajñas (sacrifices) are forbidden because they are useless attempts by foolish men. In Kali-yuga only the saṅkīrtana yajña is recommended for all practical purposes. Speaking in this way, the Lord finally convinced the Kazi, who became the Lord's follower. The Kazi thenceforth declared that no one should hinder the saṅkīrtana movement which was started by the Lord, and the Kazi left this order in his will for the sake of progeny. The Kazi's tomb still exists in the area of Navadvīpa, and Hindu pilgrims go there to show their respects. The Kazi's descendants are residents, and they never objected to saṅkīrtana, even during the Hindu-Muslim riot days.

SB Canto 1

SB 1.7.55, Purport:

Contradictory orders of different persons are impossible to carry out. Therefore a compromise was selected by Arjuna by his sharp intelligence, and he separated the jewel from the head of Aśvatthāmā. This was as good as cutting off his head, and yet his life was saved for all practical purposes. Here Aśvatthāmā is indicated as twice-born. Certainly he was twice-born, but he fell down from his position, and therefore he was properly punished.

SB 1.12.13, Purport:

Dhaumya, the royal priest, and Kṛpācārya, who was not only a priest but also a great general. Both these learned and perfect priests, assisted by other good brāhmaṇas, were employed by Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira to perform the ceremony. Therefore all the saṁskāras, purificatory processes, are not mere formalities or social functions only, but they are all for practical purposes and can be successfully performed by expert brāhmaṇas like Dhaumya and Kṛpa. Such brāhmaṇas are not only rare, but also not available in this age, and therefore, for the purpose of spiritual upliftment in this fallen age, the Gosvāmīs prefer the purificatory processes under Pāñcarātrika formulas to the Vedic rites.

Kṛpācārya is the son of the great Ṛṣi Sardban and was born in the family of Gautama. The birth is said to be accidental. By chance, the great Ṛṣi Sardban met Janapadī, a famous society girl of heaven, and the Ṛṣi Sardban discharged semina in two parts. By one part immediately a male child and by the other part a female child were born as twins.

SB 1.12.34, Purport:

The Veda-mantras are all practical, and the proof is rejuvenation of the sacrificed animal.

There is no possibility of such methodical chanting of the Vedic hymns by the so-called brāhmaṇas or priests of the present age. The untrained descendants of the twice-born families are no more like their forefathers, and thus they are counted amongst the śūdras, or once-born men. The once-born man is unfit to chant the Vedic hymns, and therefore there is no practical utility of chanting the original hymns.

And to save them all, Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu propounded the saṅkīrtana movement or yajña for all practical purposes, and the people of the present age are strongly recommended to follow this sure and recognized path.

SB 1.15.43, Purport:

Thus being freed from all external affairs, he had nothing to do with imperial life or family prestige, and for all practical purposes he posed himself exactly like an inert mad urchin and did not speak of material affairs. He had no dependence on his brothers, who had all along been helping him. This stage of complete independence from everything is also called the purified stage of fearlessness.

SB Canto 4

SB 4.13.10, Purport:

In order to avoid contradiction, botheration and unfavorable situations created by materialistic persons, a great saintly person like Jaḍa Bharata or Utkala remains silent. The less intelligent consider such saintly persons to be mad, deaf or dumb. Factually, an advanced devotee avoids speaking with persons who are not in devotional life, but to those who are in devotional life he speaks in friendship, and he speaks to the innocent for their enlightenment. For all practical purposes, the whole world is full of nondevotees, and so one kind of very advanced devotee is called bhajanānandī. Those who are goṣṭhy-ānandī, however, preach to increase the number of devotees. But even such preachers also avoid opposing elements who are unfavorably disposed towards spiritual life.

SB 4.16.10, Purport:

The word upagupta-vittaḥ is very significant in this verse. It indicates that no one would know the extent of the riches King Pṛthu would confidentially keep. The idea is that not only the king but everyone should keep his hard-earned money confidentially and secretly so that in due course of time the money can be spent for good, practical purposes. In Kali-yuga, however, the king or government has no well-protected treasury, and the only means of circulation is currency notes made of paper. Thus in times of distress the government artificially inflates the currency by simply printing papers, and this artificially raises the price of commodities, and the general condition of the citizens becomes very precarious. Thus keeping one's money very secretly is an old practice, for we find this practice present even during the reign of Mahārāja Pṛthu. Just as the king has the right to keep his treasury confidential and secret, the people should also keep their individual earnings a secret. There is no fault in such dealings.

SB 4.18.4, Translation:

One who follows the principles and instructions enjoined by the great sages of the past can utilize these instructions for practical purposes. Such a person can very easily enjoy life and pleasures.

SB Cantos 10.14 to 12 (Translations Only)

SB 11.11.48, Translation:

My dear Uddhava, I am personally the ultimate shelter and way of life for saintly liberated persons, and thus if one does not engage in My loving devotional service, which is made possible by associating with My devotees, then for all practical purposes, one possesses no effective means for escaping from material existence.

Sri Caitanya-caritamrta

CC Adi-lila

CC Adi 14.32, Purport:

This simple philosophy propounded by Śacīmātā, even though she is a woman, can defeat the Māyāvādī philosophers who speculate on oneness. The defect of Māyāvāda philosophy is that it does not accept the variety that is useful for practical purposes. Śacīmātā gave the example that although an earthen pot and a lump of dirt are basically one, for practical purposes the waterpot is useful whereas the lump of dirt is useless. Sometimes scientists argue that matter and spirit are one, with no difference between them. Factually, in a higher sense, there is no difference between matter and spirit, but one should have the practical knowledge that matter, being an inferior state of existence, is useless for our spiritual, blissful life, whereas spirit, being a finer state, is full of bliss. In this connection the Bhāgavatam gives the example that dirt and fire are practically one and the same. From the earth grow trees, and from their wood come fire and smoke.


Bhagavad-gita As It Is Lectures

Lecture on BG Introduction -- New York, February 19-20, 1966:

Rather, impure place or impure things are purified by touch of the cow dung. Now if one argues how it is that in one place it is said that the stool of the animal is impure and another place it is said that the cow dung which is also the stool of an animal, it is pure, so it is contradictory. But actually, it may appear to be contradictory, but because it is Vedic injunction, therefore for our practical purposes we accept it. And by that acceptance we are not committing mistake. It has been found by modern chemists, modern science, one Dr. Lal Mohan Gosal, he has very minutely analyzed the cow dung and he has found that cow dung is a composition of all antiseptic properties. So similarly, he has also analyzed the water of the Ganges out of curiosity. So my idea is that Vedic knowledge is complete because it is above all doubts and all mistakes. So, and Bhagavad-gītā is the essence of all Vedic knowledge. The Vedic knowledge is therefore infallible. It comes down through the perfect disciplic succession.

Lecture on BG 13.6-7 -- Bombay, September 29, 1973:

So it is Kṛṣṇa's property. How we can claim, "This is our property?" That is illusion. We are claiming, "This portion is American," "This portion is Indian," "This portion is Pakistani," but we do not know that no portion belongs to us; everything belongs to Kṛṣṇa.

For practical purpose, even if we accept that the whole world belongs to Kṛṣṇa, God, and we are sons of God, we have got right to use the property of father, so you can use. But the difficulty is that we are claiming that "This portion is mine, this portion is mine." But if we don't claim like that, everything belongs to God, that is practical communism. If we accept the whole world as the property of God, make God-centered communism... The Russians, they are making the state-center communism. But if you make God center... That is Īśopaniṣad, īśāvāsyam idaṁ sarvam: (ISO 1) "Everything belongs to God." And everyone has, that is stated in the śāstra, that everything belongs to God, everything is property of God, and we can utilize. We can use that. Yāvad artha-prayojanam.

Srimad-Bhagavatam Lectures

Lecture on SB 5.5.35 -- Vrndavana, November 22, 1976:

So this eagerness to have Kṛṣṇa, kṛṣṇa-bhakti-rasa-bhāvitā-matiḥ, that eagerness is even impossible—janma-koṭi-sukṛtibhiḥ. It is simply happened by the mercy of Kṛṣṇa and His devotee. Vedaiś ca sarvair aham eva vedyaḥ (BG 15.15). Vedeṣu durlabham. Practical purpose of studying Vedas, vedānti... That vedānti means to understand Kṛṣṇa. But vedeṣu durlabham. At the same time, it is said "It is very, very difficult to understand Kṛṣṇa by becoming so-called Vedānti." Actually Vedānta means Anta means the last word. The last work of knowledge is Kṛṣṇa. Janmādy asya yataḥ (SB 1.1.1). Ahaṁ sarvasya prabhavaḥ (BG 10.8). So to understand Kṛṣṇa, manuṣyāṇāṁ sahasreṣu kaścid yatati siddhaye (BG 7.3). But it can be done through the mercy of devotee. Vedeṣu durlabham adurlabham ātma-bhaktau (Bs. 5.33). Adurlabha. If you satisfy a pure devotee of Kṛṣṇa, he can give you Kṛṣṇa like this, "Take it." Vedeṣu durlabham adurlabham ātma-bhaktau (Bs. 5.33). Bhakta can do that. Bhaktyā mām abhijānāti (BG 18.55). You come through bhakta or come through bhakti.

Philosophy Discussions

Philosophy Discussion on Immanuel Kant:

Prabhupāda: Well that's all right, but for practical purposes they are breaking promises at every moment.

Śyāmasundara: Yes. He understands this, but his idea, he wants to get to the basis of morality by saying that...

Prabhupāda: That is a good quality. That is brahminical quality, not to break promise, to be truthful. That is goodness.

Śyāmasundara: This is an example of how one should look at his actions; that he should judge his own actions according to what he would want everyone else to do, and that these must be...

Prabhupāda: But it is not possible that everyone will be able to do. Just like you become truthful. It may be universal truth, but you do not expect that everyone will be truthful. That is not possible. Therefore it is not universal.

Philosophy Discussion on Mao Tse Tung:

Prabhupāda: That is nonsense. Therefore they are suffering. The whole world is suffering. They do not know what is real progress or what the human life is meant for. They are taking human life is as good as hogs' life or animals' life. We don't take it. We say the human life has got a special importance for spiritual realization. But these people, they have no such idea. So their practical purpose, our practical purpose is different. They are ignorant. What is the aim of life, they do not know. They take animal life and human life is the same. Simply it should be a little polished. That's all.

Śyāmasundara: He says that all ideas or theories find their verification or their fulfillment through social practice. In other words, if something is a theory, if it's practiced and found to be true, then it is true.

Prabhupāda: Here it is true. In India still, those who are spiritualists. We have seen. Now, they are tolerating severe cold without any difficulty. For a materialist it is very difficult. From practical also, those who are advanced in spiritual life, they have no disease practically. They don't go to doctor. So these are practical. How can you deny these are not practical? They can live any condition, without any food, without any vitamin. Are these not practical? So we take that advancement of spiritual life makes our life more comfortable.

Philosophy Discussion on Johann Gottlieb Fichte:

Prabhupāda: Practical, this means, suppose I want to do something, I do not know, then I go and ask a superior person who knows it. Just like when you drive your car, you are going somewhere, so you take the direction from the signpost, this way go, this point here, this village. Similarly, for practical purpose you have to approach a person who knows. That is practical. And if you think that I shall do it myself, without consulting anyone, that is not practical, that is theoretical. You will be misled. At least we are prone to be misled.

Śyāmasundara: He says that the reason is subordinate to the will.

Prabhupāda: Yes, thinking, feeling, willing, so willing, I want to do something, I apply my reason, that is intelligence. If we do it intelligently then it is good, and if I do it foolishly then it is bad. Will is there.

Conversations and Morning Walks

1969 Conversations and Morning Walks

Lord Caitanya Play Told to Tamala Krsna -- August 4, 1969, Los Angeles:

Prabhupāda: Yes. That was when He was about three years old. So generally, for morning the children given nice sandeṣa, sweetmeat, and this puffed rice in a cane pot and He would eat. But Caitanya Mahāprabhu was eating clay. So His mother said, "Oh, why You are eating clay?" Then He said, "What is the difference between clay and this foodstuff? After all, everything is clay. It is produced from clay." This is criticizing the Māyāvādī philosophy that everything is one. So His mother said, "My dear boy, it is very nice, everything is clay. But when you have to use for practical purpose... For example, if you want to keep water, so you have to keep water on the clay pot, not on the clay. So this specific form of the clay is required." Then He said, "Mother, you have taught Me very nice philosophy. I shall not eat any more clay." Sometimes He would sit in some nasty place where pots, clay pots... In India still, the system is, for cooking purpose, for the Deity, every day a new clay pot should be used. In Jagannath temple still it is. No used pot can be accepted.

1972 Conversations and Morning Walks

Room Conversation with Maharishi Impersonalists -- April 7, 1972, Melbourne:

Śyāmasundara: Kṛṣṇa is the supreme individual, supreme person. And we all take our individual, our individualities, from Him. Just like the gold ring that you are wearing, perhaps, takes its individual existence from the mine of gold. It's a very small particle of the mine, and you can't say that it is not the same as the mine. It is the same as the mine 'cause it is gold. But it is very tiny, molecular, atomic. Whereas the mine of gold is, for practical purposes, unlimited, and...

Prabhupāda: (aside:) Come on.

Śyāmasundara: ...the whole. So Kṛṣṇa, He is the source of our individual nature also. We are... We exist as part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa. Because He has personality, we have personality. Just like you have a piece of gold. The ring has a certain color and weight and characteristics of gold, the metal. You find the same qualities in the mine. So we have the same qualities as Kṛṣṇa has because He..., we are parts and parcels of Him.

1973 Conversations and Morning Walks

Room Conversation with French Journalist and UNESCO Worker -- August 10, 1973, Paris:

Prabhupāda: Just see. And therefore I say, "Cheater and cheated." Yes. Similarly, scientists also. Recently in Los Angeles, California University, one professor, a big scientist came. He's a Nobel Prize owner. He described, gave lecture. He has written one book, on which he has got Nobel Prize, Evolution of Chemicals. He wants to prove by chemical, combination of chemical, life has come into existence. That is his theory, like Darwin's theory, that life is from matter or chemical. So after hearing the lecture, there is a professor also, a student, yes. He is also Doctor of Chemistry. He is my disciple. He inquired that "If I give you all these chemicals, whether you can produce life?" At that time he said, "That I cannot say." Just see. He is proposing that "From these chemicals, life has begun," and when he is questioned whether by supplying these chemicals he can produce a life, he said, "That I cannot say." This is going on. Then what is the... Then, if you cannot say, then why you are saying that from these chemicals life has come? So when they are caught up for practical purposes, they'll deny. And they are passing on as philosopher, as scientist, priest, and these things. Just see. (someone comes in) What is that?

1974 Conversations and Morning Walks

Morning Walk -- March 24, 1974, Bombay:

Prabhupāda: Sa vai manaḥ kṛṣṇa-padāravindayor vacāṁsi vaikuṇṭha-guṇānuvarṇane (SB 9.4.18). This is... Different parts of our senses should be utilized. The first business is to fix up the mind at the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa. Then engage the tongue in describing the activities of Kṛṣṇa. Therefore Kṛṣṇa has acted in so many ways so that we can remember the history of the activities of Kṛṣṇa and discuss it. Vacāṁsi vaikuṇṭha-guṇānuvarṇane. Then the legs should be used for going to the temple. Hands should be used for cleansing the temple. Nose should be used for smelling the flowers offered to Kṛṣṇa. Ears should be used for hearing about Kṛṣṇa. In this way if we engage our senses in different activities relating to Kṛṣṇa, that is success of life. This is Kṛṣṇa consciousness, Vacāṁsi vaikuṇṭha-guṇānuvarṇane. (Hindi) So now you can talk. (laughter) Hare Kṛṣṇa. (Hindi) (break) Practical purposes. This land and that water is matter, but we are walking on the land. Can you walk on the water?

Morning Walk -- March 24, 1974, Bombay:

Prabhupāda: the body, so we have to behave duality. (laughter) You cannot say oneness. When you are liberated from the body, that is another thing. For practical purposes... This philosophy was discussed by the mother of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu when He was a child, this philosophy. Caitanya Mahāprabhu was given very nice sweetmeats to eat. So instead of eating the sweetmeat, He was eating the dirt. So mother said, "My dear child, why You are eating dirt? I have given You sandeśa." "Mother, what is the difference between this dirt and sandeśa? It is all Brahman." You see? So His mother said, "My dear child, You are all right. Just like this is earth, and there is earthen pot. So if you want to keep water, you cannot throw the water on the ground. You have to take the earthen pot." So this philosophy of oneness and difference was already discussed when Caitanya Mahāprabhu was a child. Simultaneously one and different. Yes. Earthen pot and earth, actually, from the material point of view, they're the same thing. But if you want to keep water you cannot keep it on the ground. You have to take to the jug.

1975 Conversations and Morning Walks

Morning Walk -- July 21, 1975, San Francisco:

Bahulāśva: Socrates also, he was discussing epistemology, and he said that faith or belief is as good as knowledge for all practical purposes.

Prabhupāda: Yes. The same thing: the child has no knowledge, but he has faith in his parents, and he believes what his parents says. Then he is making progress.

Bahulāśva: This way.

Prabhupāda: I have faith in you. (break) Now, I give sometimes this example. Just like you go to a barber shop, and you put your neck like this, and he is with the razor. So unless you have faith, "No, he is good man. He will not cut my throat," how can you do so? So faith is the beginning. If you have no... If you say, "No, I have no faith in you," then you cannot be cleansed.

Baradrāj: That example became very clear when we went to India. (Prabhupāda & devotees laugh) Because the barbers are so, they look like they could cut your throat.

1977 Conversations and Morning Walks

Morning Darsana and Room Conversation Ramkrishna Bajaj and friends -- January 9, 1977, Bombay:

Prabhupāda: Well, saṅga means execution. When you associate with medical association or sharebrokers' association, simply go there and sit down is not your business. You have to do something. You have to do something. Sat-saṅga means that. Tad-yoṣanāt aśu apavarga-vartmani. Sat-saṅga means you have to take the knowledge and use it for practical purpose. That is sat-saṅga. So our this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is trying to give the sat-saṅga, opening centers all over the world. If people take advantage of it they'll be benefited. But if he is ahaṅkāra-vimūḍhātmā, then it is very unfortunate. Mandāḥ sumanda-matayo manda-bhāgyā hy upadrutāḥ (SB 1.1.10). This is Kali-yuga. The leaders also do not associate with sat, and they create their own imagination. Sat, oṁ tat sat. Bhagavān is the supreme sat. So they do not care for Bhagavān, so there is no sat-saṅga. Asat-saṅga.


1947 to 1965 Correspondence

Letter to Sri Padampat Singhania -- Kanpur 7 May, 1957:

I have already mentioned about this Mantra in my previous letter and I beg to confirm it further that the Name "Krishna" even up to the foreign words like God and Allah, if they at all aim at the Supreme Personality—then the Name is as much holy and potential as perfect is the Supreme Lord—because in the Absolute Realm or Spiritual Nature everything is identical with everything as all of them are qualitatively spiritual and therefore pure, eternal, liberated and perfect.

For all practical purposes if we systematically preach to chant the holy name of Godhead, I think no body even the religious fanatic will take objection to it. Every human being has a conception of the supreme truth. That conception is presented in some concrete shape. If therefore the Mussulman or the Christian denies to chant the name of Rama or Krishna we may ask him to chant the name of Allah or God respectively and I think therefore there will be no objection even by the Buddhists if we simply ask them to chant the name of Lord of Buddha in the systematic way.

Letter to Anand Prakash -- Bombay 14 August, 1958:

That is the last instructions of the Bhagavad-gita.

Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu who is Krishna Himself in the Form of a devotee preached the cult of the Bhagavad-gita for all practical purposes and benefit of the humanity at large. As it is stated in the Bhagavad-gita that a person who takes the responsibility of preaching the Bhakti cult by all means is the most most favorite person of the lord. This mission has to be taken up in the modern light of understanding and for this purpose I have registered __ association of the name as above mentioned.

Facts about "Practical purposes"
Compiled byVisnu Murti + and RupaManjari +
Completed sectionsALL +
Date of first entryMay 13, 0011 JL +
Date of last entryAugust 5, 0011 JL +
Total quotes25 +
Total quotes by sectionBG: 0 +, SB: 9 +, CC: 1 +, OB: 0 +, Lec: 6 +, Conv: 7 + and Let: 2 +