Action in freedom has some meaning–SP

October 9, 2021 in Articles by Damaghosa dasa

April 18 1972 Hong Kong conversations
Guest (1): The Hare Kṛṣṇa movement has started in the United States. Why did it start in the United States, rather than India?
Prabhupāda: Because the United States, they are our best customer. A businessman goes to a place… Just like you have come here. Why you have come here? Wherever there is best possibility of doing your business, there you must go. I went to United States because I know these people are not poverty-stricken. And our Indian people, they are now, they have been trained to think like that—they are poverty-stricken. Actually, they are not poverty-stricken, but the leaders have educated them that, “You are all poverty-stricken.” This is India’s position. So far I knew that it would not be successful in India. The government will not help. The public is educated in a different way. They are after technology. So and “familiarity breeds contempt.” They say, “What is this Hare Kṛṣṇa movement? It is known to us since a long time. What effect it will have?” Many Indian students in foreign countries, they say, “Swamiji, what will this Hare Kṛṣṇa movement benefit us? We want technology.” So that is the mentality of the Indians at the present moment. They have lost everything and therefore they are beggars. They have lost their own culture and therefore they are beggars. So I thought it wise that I shall go to a country where there is no poverty. They will learn. They have enough. For material enjoyment, they have got enough. The material enjoyment means money and woman. That is, in America, it is lying on the street. As much as you like, you can take. But they are disgusted with this material enjoyment. Therefore they are coming as hippies. They are coming from very rich family. Their fathers, their grandfathers, are very rich. At least they belong to the richest nation. But they are not satisfied. They are not satisfied. That is the natural sequence. The Vedānta-sūtra says, athāto brahma jijñāsā. When one has satisfied his senses sufficiently, he is no longer interested in sense gratification. Perhaps you know C.R. Das, the name of C.R. Das in Calcutta. In those days, fifty years ago he was earning fifty thousand rupees per month, but he was not satisfied. And one day he and his wife were sitting together and the wife questioned, “Why do you look so morose? You have got everything at your command. Everyone respects you. You have got money. Everything you have got, education, popularity. Still, why you are unhappy?” So he simply, by chance he saw one mendicant was passing on the street, a sādhu beggar. So he said, “I want to become like him.” He said, “I want to be a mendicant like him.” So there are many instances in our history. Just like Bhārata Mahārāja. He was young man, twenty-four years old, and emperor of the whole planet, young wife, king, everything. He left everything. Bhārata Mahārāja passed long, long ago. Buddha, Lord Buddha, he was also prince and very young, and he was surrounded with dancing girls. But as soon as he came out on the street, he saw one old man. “What is this?” “This is old man. Everyone has to become old like this.” So he became immediately converted to a saintly person. “I must go and meditate and realize myself. Why shall I become old?” [break] I accept a new opportunities to preach it from everything. That is my philosophy. And it has become successful. If I had taken this position from India… I was trying. In India also, I tried. I wrote Mahatma Gandhi that “You are very respectable man, and people like you. You preach Bhagavad-gītā. You stand with your photograph. There is Bhagavad-gītā. Why don’t you preach Bhagavad-gītā? Now politics is finished. You have got independence.” But this politics is so sweet to these politicians, that until he was killed, he could not give up politics, until he was killed. He was advocating non-violence, but he was forced to die by violence. He wanted Hindu-Muslim unity. He was forced to accept partition of India. He was so much baffled, but still, he would not give up politics until he was killed. On the day of his death, in the morning, because he had so many letters, so many secretaries, so he said, “I am very much useless. I want to die.” He said like that. And actually, in the evening he was killed. He was thinking that “My next solace is only death,” because he could understand, “I have created simply problems. No problem I have solved. I have simply created problem.” He was a sane man. He could understand it. So similarly, everyone is creating simply problems, without solving… This United Nations, what they are doing for the last twenty years? Simply creating problems. So without Kṛṣṇa consciousness, there is no question of solving problems. That’s a fact. Any sane man, any philosopher, any scientist may come. I shall convince him.
Guest (1): How many disciples do you now have, sir, in the U.S.?
Prabhupāda: You cannot expect many disciples, but still, there are two thousand. Because I have got so many conditions and the fact is so difficult to understand, Kṛṣṇa consciousness. They have forgotten Kṛṣṇa, they have forgotten God, and I am trying to make them Kṛṣṇa conscious. It is a very difficult job. I have to shed my blood three tons before I make one convinced in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That is my experience. I have to talk with him, especially these Europeans and Americans. They do not accept anything so blindly.

July 5 1976 Wash DC conversations

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