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So-called presidents

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Srimad-Bhagavatam

SB Canto 1

The kings and commanders were not so-called presidents or ministers of defense as they are today. They would not stay home while the poor soldiers or mercenaries were fighting face to face.
SB 1.9.36, Purport: The kings and the commanders were to stand in the front of the fighting soldiers. That was the system of actual fighting. The kings and commanders were not so-called presidents or ministers of defense as they are today. They would not stay home while the poor soldiers or mercenaries were fighting face to face. This may be the regulation of modern democracy, but when actual monarchy was prevailing, the monarchs were not cowards elected without consideration of qualification. As it was evident from the Battlefield of Kurukṣetra, all the executive heads of both parties, like Droṇa, Bhīṣma, Arjuna and Duryodhana, were not sleeping; all of them were actual participants in the fighting, which was selected to be executed at a place away from the civil residential quarters. This means that the innocent citizens were immune from all effects of fighting between the rival royal parties. The citizens had no business in seeing what was going to happen during such fighting. They were to pay one fourth of their income to the ruler, whether he be Arjuna or Duryodhana.

Lectures

Srimad-Bhagavatam Lectures

By instruction of high personalities, mahājana... Mahājano yena gataḥ sa panthāḥ. Bhīṣma is also one of the mahājanas, a great authority. So this is the position of Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, completely being confident, freed from all ignorance, he sat on the throne. Just imagine what is the position of this monarch and these rascal so-called presidents.
Lecture on SB 1.10.3 -- Mayapura, June 18, 1973: Therefore, in the human society, there are educational institution. Children are sent there for education, and they become learned scholars later on. And if they are fortunate, by good education, they become vijñāna-vidhūta-vibhramaḥ. Vijñāna-vidhūta-vibhramaḥ. By instruction of high personalities, mahājana... Mahājano yena gataḥ sa panthāḥ [Cc. Madhya 17.186]. Bhīṣma is also one of the mahājanas, a great authority. So this is the position of Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, that completely being confident, completely being freed from all ignorance, then he sat on the throne. Just imagine what is the position of this monarch and these rascal so-called presidents. Sanātana Gosvāmī presented himself... Sanātana Gosvāmī and Rūpa Gosvāmī, he presented, both of them presented themself by Caitanya Mahāprabhu as nīca-jāti. Nīca. Nīca means lowest, lowest grade; jāti, born. But actually they were born of very high-grade brāhmaṇa family of Karnatak. But why they presented themselves as nīca-jāti? Because that is explained in Bhakti-ratnākara, that because their behavior on account of mixing with the Muhammadan kings degraded, therefore they considered themself as nīca. That is confirmed by the śāstras. You may take birth in high brāhmaṇa family, but by association and culture, if you become degraded, then you have to be designated as such degraded person.
If the so-called king or the president is dependent on the votes of some rascal voters, then what kind of sva-rāṭ he is? At the present moment, the so-called president is dependent on the votes of some rascals. That's all.
Lecture on SB 1.15.38 -- Los Angeles, December 16, 1973: So formerly, the whole planet, Bhāratavarṣa... It was named Bhāratavarṣa. And it was being governed by one emperor. Therefore it is said here, sva-rāṭ. Sva-rāṭ means completely independent. Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira was not dependent on any other king or any other state. He was fully independent. Whatever he liked, he could do. That is king. That is emperor. If the so-called king or the president is dependent on the votes of some rascal voters, then what kind of sva-rāṭ he is? At the present moment, the so-called president is dependent on the votes of some rascals. That's all. The rascals, they do not know whom to vote, and therefore another rascal is elected, and when he is not doing well, they cry. You have elected. Why you are crying now? Because they are rascals. They do not know. So this is going on. But actually, the head of the state should be sva-rāṭ, fully independent. Not on the votes of the prajā. He is only dependent on Kṛṣṇa, just like Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira. All the Pāṇḍavas, they were under the order of Kṛṣṇa.
The first-class training is brāhmaṇa. Brāhmaṇa means they must be truthful first. Similarly, another class, second class, they should be trained up as kṣatriya. Not that the fighting is going on, and the so-called president is sitting in his parlor and smoking cigarette. He will fight.
Lecture on SB 1.16.1 -- Los Angeles, December 29, 1973: But the Vedic civilization takes this opportunity of human being, to make him perfect in his life. What is that perfection? That perfection is to understand God and become His devotee. That is perfection, not that to become very stout and strong, as strong as the tiger, or as cunning as the jackal. Not that. That is not training. So according to division, the training was there. The first-class training is brāhmaṇa. Brāhmaṇa means they must be truthful first. Satyaṁ śamo damas titikṣā. They must be able to control the senses, control the mind. Satyaṁ śamo damas titikṣā. Must be tolerant, titikṣā; ārjava, very simple; jñānam, full knowledge; vijñānam, practical application in life. Satyaṁ śamo damas titikṣā. Śuciḥ, cleanliness. Brahma-karma svabhāva-jam. So they should be trained. A class of men should be trained for these qualities. They are called brāhmaṇa. Similarly, another class, second class, they should be trained up as kṣatriya, very powerful, never goes away from the challenge of fighting. Yuddhe cāpy apalāyanam. Not that the fighting is going on, and the so-called president is sitting in his parlor and smoking cigarette. No. Yuddhe cāpy apalāyanam: "Oh, everyone is fighting there? I must go in the front." He will fight. Otherwise how people will be encouraged? The chief man is in the background, and poor men, they are fighting? No. Yuddhe cāpy apalāyanam. That is kṣatriya.
Now because the so-called leaders, so-called presidents, they are themself agent of Kali, how they can stop this illicit sex, meat-eating, gambling, and intoxication? They cannot do. So you have to take shelter of the śāstra, and then you will be able to avoid it.
Lecture on SB 1.16.17 -- Los Angeles, January 12, 1974: Therefore, Parīkṣit Mahārāja's situation, vartamānasya, tasyaivaṁ vartamānasya, how he was being situated, in what position he was. Just like not to go so far as to go to Parīkṣit Mahārāja. Even those who are neophytes, trying to be beyond the range of Kali-yuga, our members of the Kṛṣṇa society, because they have given up these four sinful activities, they can see how one is influenced by Kali. So this is the position. Therefore he could see. Now because the so-called leaders, so-called presidents, they are themself agent of Kali, how they can stop this illicit sex, meat-eating, gambling, and intoxication? They cannot do. So you have to take shelter of the śāstra, and then you will be able to avoid it. Otherwise, it is not possible.
In India we have seen so many bribe. Police, you give bribe; high-court judge, you can give bribe. This is the position of Kali-yuga, horrible position. The king or the so-called president is simply showbottle.
Lecture on SB 2.9.11 -- Tokyo, April 27, 1972: Prabhupāda: So anyway, then Bhāgavata says anadhena nyāya ratim(?): "If you have no money, then don't expect justice. Don't expect justice." Even high-court judges, they take bribe to give you favorable judgement. In India we have seen so many bribe. Police, you give bribe; high-court judge, you can give bribe. This is the position of Kali-yuga, horrible position. The king or the so-called president is simply showbottle. If you approach... You cannot approach. Formerly, if anyone was ill-treated, injustified, then he could go in front of the king. Just like Lord Rāmacandra, He was approached by a citizen: "My Lord, in the presence of father, son has died. What is Your kingdom?" Just see. The king is responsible. Natural death is father dies first, the son dies later on. But somebody's son died in the presence of the father. He immediately brought the case before the king: "Why it is?" This is called king. The king is responsible. In our Kṛṣṇa book you will find that one brāhmaṇa's sons were stolen, and he, every time he chastised the king. You have read that portion? Yes. So in Kali-yuga they are not actually functioning as king or president, but still, they are drawing high salaries and respect, doing harm to the people, and still, they are exploiting.

Conversations and Morning Walks

1977 Conversations and Morning Walks

The so-called president and leader and Gandhi, they are also another animal, big animal. So does it mean an animal big and very powerful, has got the human intelligence? This is civilization. And when you say the right thing, that human life is meant for understanding God and prepare for the next life—"brainwash." This is life.
Room Conversation -- January 26, 1977, Puri: Prabhupāda: So therefore these four animals have been mentioned: śva-viḍ-varāhoṣṭra-kharaiḥ saṁstutaḥ [SB 2.3.19]. And he is, this class of men, selecting a leader by vote, democracy. So this class man intelligence, just see. And what class of man he will select? And how we desire to be happy by such elected men who is elected by these dog, hog, camel and asses? Are there any intelligent? And you expect good government, peaceful state and... And the śva-viḍ-varāhoṣṭra-kharaiḥ saṁstutaḥ puruṣaḥ paśuḥ. Therefore the others, they went to see the lion. So dog, hog, camel, ass will... "Oh, he's a lion." But what is a lion? It is also an animal, big animal. That's all. Similarly, the so-called president and leader and Gandhi, they are also another animal, big animal. So does it mean an animal big and very powerful, he has got the human intelligence? This is civilization. And when you say the right thing, that human life is meant for understanding God and prepare for the next life—"brainwash." This is life. So remain like hog, dog, camel, and asses and go on, be engaged in politics and election—"Then you are right." And if you speak against this mode of civilization—"brainwash."
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Archana +  and Serene +
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BG: 0 +, SB: 1 +, CC: 0 +, OB: 0 +, Lec: 5 +, Conv: 1 +  and Let: 0 +