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We should not become religious fanatics, nor dry mental speculators. Both these classes of men are dangerous. They cannot make any advance. The combination. You should be religious, but try to understand each and every line philosophically

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"we should not become religious fanatics, nor dry mental speculators. Both these classes of men are dangerous. They cannot make any advance. The combination. You should be religious, but try to understand each and every line philosophically"

Lectures

Bhagavad-gita As It Is Lectures

If you are actually a wise man, then you'll find it is sublime. And if you simply stick to your own religious ritualistic principles, don't try to understand the philosophy of everything, then you become a fanatic. So we should not become religious fanatics, nor dry mental speculators. Both these classes of men are dangerous. They cannot make any advance. The combination. You should be religious, but try to understand each and every line philosophically.
Lecture on BG 3.1-5 -- Los Angeles, December 20, 1968:

Tamāla Kṛṣṇa: Purport: "In the previous chapter, as a prelude to the Bhagavad-gītā, many different paths were explained, namely sāṅkhya-yoga, buddhi-yoga, controlling the senses by intelligence, work without fruitive desire, the position of the neophyte, etc. This was all presented unsystematically. A more organized outline of the path would be necessary for action and understanding. Arjuna therefore wanted to clear up these apparently confusing matters so that any common man could accept them without misinterpretation. Although Kṛṣṇa had no intention of confusing Arjuna by any jugglery of words, Arjuna could not follow the process of Kṛṣṇa consciousness either by inertia or active service. In other words, by his questions he is clearing the path of Kṛṣṇa consciousness for all students who are serious about understanding the mystery of the Bhagavad-gītā."

Prabhupāda: Yes. Sometimes it appears to the student contradictory. But actually, the master who is well conversant, he does not say anything contradictory. It is the misunderstanding of the student that sometimes he thinks that it is contradictory. Therefore the question is allowed. You'll find that a student is advised to question to the spiritual master. Tad viddhi. You should understand the transcendental science by the process of... First thing is surrender; then question, and sevā, service. Surrender and service and question. Simply if you question, and don't surrender, don't render any service, then it will be simply waste of time.

Just like Arjuna was talking in the beginning with Kṛṣṇa as friends. So Kṛṣṇa was talking very cautiously because it was friendly talk. But when Arjuna surrendered unto Him, "I accept You as my spiritual master," He's talking freely. This is going on. Go on.

Tamāla Kṛṣṇa: Three: "The blessed Lord said, 'O sinless Arjuna, I have already explained that there are two classes of men who realize the self. The contemplative are inclined to understand it by empirical philosophical speculations, and the active are inclined to know it by devotional service (BG 3.3).' "

Purport: "In the Second Chapter, verse thirty-nine, the Lord has explained two kinds of procedure, namely sāṅkhya-yoga and karma-yoga, or buddhi-yoga."

Prabhupāda: Sāṅkhya, sāṅkhya-yoga. Sāṅkhya means analyzing the material elements and dovetail it with the Supreme. This is called sāṅkhya-yoga. Samyak khyāpayate, or things are very explicitly explained for understanding of the common man. That is called sāṅkhya-yoga, or jñāna-yoga. And another is karma-yoga, or buddhi-yoga. Go on.

Tamāla Kṛṣṇa: "In this verse the Lord explains the same more clearly. Sāṅkhya-yoga or the analytical study of the nature of spirit and matter is the subject for persons who are inclined to speculate and understand things by experimental knowledge and philosophy. The other class of men work in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, as is explained in verse sixty-one of the same Second Chapter. The Lord has explained also in verse thirty-nine that by working under the principles of buddhi-yoga or Kṛṣṇa consciousness one can be relieved from the bondage of action and furthermore there is no flaw in the process. The same principle is more clearly explained in verse sixty-one, that this buddhi-yoga is to depend entirely on the Supreme or more specifically, on Kṛṣṇa, and in this way all the senses can be brought under control very easily. Therefore both the yogas are interdependent, as religion and philosophy. Religion without philosophy is sentiment or sometimes fanaticism, while philosophy without religion is mental speculation. The ultimate goal is Kṛṣṇa."

Prabhupāda: There are certain class of men who are simply philosophizing and there are certain class of men who are simply blindly following religious ritualistic process. So Bhagavad-gītā is combination of both. That is scientific. You should be religious, but should understand everything philosophically. Otherwise one becomes fanatic, religious fanatic. In the Caitanya-caritāmṛta it is clearly said that caitanyera dayāra kathā karaha vicāra. You people, you try to understand the gifts of Caitanya Mahāprabhu by your philosophical understanding. Not blindly, philosophically. And vicāra karile citte pāibe camatkāra. If you are actually a wise man, then you'll find it is sublime. And if you simply stick to your own religious ritualistic principles, don't try to understand the philosophy of everything, then you become a fanatic. So we should not become religious fanatics, nor dry mental speculators. Both these classes of men are dangerous. They cannot make any advance. The combination. You should be religious, but try to understand each and every line philosophically.

Just like in the Bible there is the statement, "God created this universe." It is a fact. But because modern educated persons have not explained how God created, how the process of creation... These things are explained in the Bhāgavata, how the sky became in existence, then the air became in existence, the fire became in existence. There is a process, general graduation. Actually, God has created the world. There is no doubt about it. But because it is not philosophically explained, the modern educated persons, they don't accept.

So Bhagavad-gītā you'll find everything. A combination of religious sentiments plus philosophical understanding. That is wanted. Go on.

Tamāla Kṛṣṇa: "The ultimate goal is Kṛṣṇa, because the philosophers who are also sincerely searching after the Absolute Truth come in the end to Kṛṣṇa consciousness. This is also stated in the Bhagavad-gītā. The whole process is to understand the real position of the self in relation to the Superself. The indirect process is philosophical speculation by which gradually one may come to the point of Kṛṣṇa consciousness and the other process is by directly connecting with everything in Kṛṣṇa consciousness."

Prabhupāda: Yes. If you want to go to the goal by philosophical speculation, analyzing "This is not spirit," the neti neti, "this is not Brahman, this is not spirit," that also will help you. But in this age, such philosophical study... Not in this age, every age. That is a very long term process. But when people lived for a very, very long time, it may be it was possible to arrive at the goal of life by such process, but in this age there is no time.

I do not know what is going to happen to me just after coming out, or while I am sitting in this room. Even a big man, President Kennedy, he was going in procession, he never expected that he'll be shot, but he's shot. So there is no certainty of our life this age. Therefore we should take up the quick method for self-realization. The long term method will not help us. We are not prepared for it neither. Therefore the short term, immediate effective. Chant Hare Kṛṣṇa, and immediate effect. Go on.

Tamāla Kṛṣṇa: "The indirect process is philosophical speculation by which gradually one may come to the point of Kṛṣṇa consciousness and the other process is by directly connecting with everything in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Out of these two, the path of Kṛṣṇa consciousness is better because the philosophical process does not purify the senses. Kṛṣṇa consciousness..."

Prabhupāda: Philosophical process... You can show by jugglery of words your academic qualification, but it will not take you to the right... We have seen many such philosophical speculators. They are simply talking in the meeting. But that's all. And if we take, study their private character it is less than ordinary man. Less than ordinary man. That will not help us in this age. You see? You may take some credit in a meeting, "Oh, he is a very nice speaker." So what is that if you become a nice speaker? What will help you in your spiritual realization? This is. If you do one minute's Hare Kṛṣṇa, it will give you immediate result. One second, if you chant or hear. This is so nice. Direct method. Immediate effect. Go on.