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We take some time to see whether he can develop brahminical symptom. That is our process, not that anyone comes, and we give him a sacred thread and he becomes immediately brahmana. We don't do this

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"we take some time to see whether he can develop brahminical symptom. That is our process, not that anyone comes, and we give him a sacred thread and he becomes immediately brahmana. We don't do this"

Conversations and Morning Walks

1975 Conversations and Morning Walks

By birth he is born. Then again, when he develops certain types of symptom, so one has to take him in that way. That is śāstra. We are accepting, or giving them sacred thread, brāhmaṇa, after seeing that they are actually acting as a brāhmaṇa, not superficially. Therefore we take some time to see whether he can develop brahminical symptom. That is our process, not that anyone comes, and we give him a sacred thread and he becomes immediately brāhmaṇa. We don't do this. First of all give him chance. Let him chant Hare Kṛṣṇa, follows the rules and regulations. Then let us see. If he is actually serious, he has developed the symptom, then... This is the proper way.
Morning Walk -- November 2, 1975, Nairobi:

Devotee (5): They always say the Africans could never become Kṛṣṇa conscious.

Prabhupāda: How they are becoming?

Devotee (5): They don't believe.

Prabhupāda: Believe? You do not see even?

Devotee (5): But they say that "Oh, he will do it, and then, after one year, he will stop."

Prabhupāda: Well, that is another criticism. Somebody is eating nice yogurt. Everyone will say, "Oh, it is very nice. It is very nice, very nice." Another man says, "Yes, it is nice, but after three days it will be sour." (laughter) You rascal, you consider for the present. What "after three days"? Means he's a bad critic, so he could not find out any fault. Everyone says it is good. So "After three days it will be bad." This sort of criticism. So you have already become bad. You were doing service to others. What does he do, that priest?

Brahmānanda: He's a businessman.

Prabhupāda: Business. So is that...? The business is the occupation of brāhmaṇa? You are already fallen. How he can criticize others?

Indian woman: That is all, brāhmaṇas, all brāhmaṇas, there is no big knowledge. That is Śiva. Śiva is the head.

Prabhupāda: That's all. Śiva is the head, but whether you are brāhmaṇa? That is the question.

Indian woman: They don't know, understand.

Prabhupāda: Brāhmaṇa's qualification is there—śama, dama, titikṣa, ārjavam and jñānam, vijñānam, āstikyam, brahma-karma... (BG 18.42). Everything is there, the symptoms. So you are doing business, the occupation of the vaiśyas or śūdras, and how you are claiming to become brāhmaṇa? The... Who is a brāhmaṇa, that symptoms is there in the śāstra. And not only the symptoms, Nārada Muni has said, "If these symptoms are found elsewhere, then he should be accepted according to the symptom." There is no question of birth. Yasya hi yaḻ lakṣanām proktaṁ varṇābhivyanjakaṁ yady anyātrāpi dṛṣyeta tat tenaiva viniriset. This is Nārada's vision. So it is the symptom. Just like a doctor, medical man. He diagnoses according to the symptom. He finds out the cause. So symptom is required, not that a man has become diseased or healthy by birth. No. By birth he is born. Then again, when he develops certain types of symptom, so one has to take him in that way. That is śāstra. We are accepting, or giving them sacred thread, brāhmaṇa, after seeing that they are actually acting as a brāhmaṇa, not superficially. Therefore we take some time to see whether he can develop brahminical symptom. That is our process, not that anyone comes, and we give him a sacred thread and he becomes immediately brāhmaṇa. We don't do this. First of all give him chance. Let him chant Hare Kṛṣṇa, follows the rules and regulations. Then let us see. If he is actually serious, he has developed the symptom, then... This is the proper way. Even one comes from the brāhmaṇa family—he wants initiation—we don't give immediately, even if he is coming from a brāhmaṇa... That is a good facility, that he is born in a brāhmaṇa family, but the symptom is the first necessity. Either you are born in a brāhmaṇa family or śūdra family, it doesn't matter.

Indian man (6): (unclear)

Brahmānanda: What is that? The brāhmaṇas who come over from?

Indian man (6): From ISKCON center. We have a tendency (unclear)

Brahmānanda: Yes. So what is your question?

Indian man (6): So don't you think that the blame should not be, usually be laid on the Africans but on the whole...?

Brahmānanda: He's saying that the brāhmaṇas who comes from our overseas temples here, it's their responsibility to see that the Africans follow properly, because the Africans will follow their example.

Prabhupāda: Yes, it is for that purpose they have come. That is the purpose, missionary purpose, here. We come here not to earn some money but to see that this culture is spread. So what is his question?

Brahmānanda: So it's the responsibility then of those who are coming as the missionaries to set the proper example.

Prabhupāda: Yes, certainly.