Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.3.16 and Initiation
by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Los Angeles, September 21, 1972

Pradyumna: (leads chanting, etc.)

surasuranam udadhim mathnatam mandaracalam dadhre kamatha-rupena prstha ekadase vibhuh

Translation: “The eleventh incarnation of the Lord was in the form of a tortoise whose shell served as a pivot for the Mandaracala Hill, which was being used as a churning rod by the theists and the atheists of the universe.”

Prabhupada: So yasyantam na viduh surasura-gana devaya tasmai namah.(?) The mantra, there is mantra, that yasyantam na viduh. One cannot understand the antam, the ultimate end of the Supreme… Yasyantam na viduh. Viduh means “does not know.” Surasura-gana. Sura. Sura means demigods, theists. Those who are believer in God, they are called sura, and just the opposite—asura. Asura does not believe in the existence of God. He thinks he is God. That is asura. Asuri-bhavam asritah. In the Bhagavad-gita it is said asuri. Asuri, this word has come from this asura. Adjective. Asura is nominative. So from asura, it becomes asuri. Asuri-bhavam asritah. Those who are atheists, they do not surrender. They do not like the idea of God or Krsna consciousness. But they do not know what is God or what is the ultimate end, who is the original cause. They do not know. Even the theists, they also do not know. They know Krsna, but it is impossible to understand what is the limit of Krsna’s energies, just like we were discussing this morning.

So unlimited, unlimited. Yasyantam na viduh surasura-gana devaya tasmai namah. Devaya, that Supreme Lord, we simply offer our respectful obeisances. It is not possible to know perfectly what is the potency and energy of God. The atheists, they do not know at all. But theists, devotees, they know, but that is not complete. Even Krsna does not know how much powerful He is. That is called unlimited. So surasura-gana udadhim mathnatam. Churning. Once upon a time they churned the whole ocean. Now, churning the ocean… You have got experience, churning the milk in a pot or something else in a pot. But the pot is the ocean, the Pacific Ocean, and the rod is Mandaracala Hill. And one side, the asuras, and the other side, the suras. So the churning rod must be placed on something, a pivot. That is kamatha-rupena. Lord accepted the… Because the kamatha, the tortoise can live within the water and without the water also. They can live on the land and within the water. So the churning rod, Mandaracala Hill, was placed on the shell, on the back of the… Kesava dhrta-kurma-sarira. Ksitir iha vipulatare tisthati tava prsthe. This prstha, he is carrying.

ksitir iha vipulatare tisthati tava prsthe dharani-dharana-kina-cakra-garisthe kesava dhrta-kurma-sarira jaya jagadisa hare

This Kurma, kamatha-rupena. Now, the surasura-gana, they are standing on the ocean. If you go up to your waist in the water, you become dangerously situated. But they were standing. This proves the law of relativity. Everywhere this law of relativity is working. You do not think, because you cannot stand in the midst of the water of the ocean, therefore nobody can stand. That is nonsense. Ant, the small ant, it is also working. The same thing is going on in the ant society. They are also struggling for existence, eating, sleeping, mating, and defending. And we are also doing that. And higher than us, surasura-gana, they are also doing that. But although the quality of the work is the same, the quantity is different. Quality of the work the same. Eating, sleeping, mating, and defending. Everywhere, all living entities, they are struggling. Whole day they are working according to their capacity. And the qualities, what for they are working? Eating, sleeping, mating, and defending. That’s all. If you just resist one ant, it is coming, if you try to stop, the ant will also resist. It will go this way, that way, this way. It will not agree, “Why you are stopping me?” But it is trying in its own capacity. Similarly, you are also trying to resist in your own capacity by discovering atomic bomb. But as you can smash millions of ants simply by rubbing your leg on the ground, similarly there are other beings who can finish you simply by rubbing their legs. Don’t think you are all and all. The rascals, the so-called human scientists, they are thinking they are all in all. “I am the monarch of all I survey.” That is not. In God’s creation there is smaller than the smallest and the bigger than the biggest. Nobody can claim that “I am everything.” No. That is not possible. So they were standing on the… Without standing, how they are churning? But the sea water is up to the knees. How they can stand? So the seven mile sea water is up to their knees. Your, an ant, even seven inches is sufficient water. And for you seven feet is sufficient water. Similarly, others, even seven miles is not sufficient. This is the order of… Don’t think that these are all stories. Surasuranam mathnatam. “How they can stand on the ocean? How they can churn? Oh, these are all stories.” They are not stories. It may be story for you. Just like if you speak to an ant or what is called, insect… There are many insects. They take their birth… We have seen it. In India we see. In this season there are insects. They are called divali-poka, insect divali. Just in the evening they are born. And they flock together before a light, (sound imitation:) bawnh, bawnh, bawnh, bawnh, like that. And throughout the whole night they will do, and at the end of the night, in the morning, you will see, they are, in heap, they are lying dead. So their life, the duration of life is that night. within that night they take their birth, they grow, they beget children, family, and defend, eat, mate. Everything is complete within the night. And at the end of the night, it is finished. So similarly, if to these flies, if you say, “Oh, we are dying like this, but there is human being. This is only one night. And such… There is another day also of the same period. Then together, day and night, such thirty day and night makes their month. And such 12 months make their year. And such hundred years they live.” So how the fly will understand? Similarly, we cannot understand. When the duration of life of Brahma is described, we think it is story. Similarly, they will think also story. Nothing is story. In the Vedic literatures all informations are there. Their relative life, big and small, smaller than the smallest, bigger than the biggest. Don’t think that these description in the Vedas, they are stories. They are not stories. They are facts. But we cannot accommodate in our poor teeny brain. That’s all. So what we shall understand about God? It is not possible. Therefore it is said, atah sri-krsna-namadi na bhaved grahyam indriyaih [BRS. 1.2.234]. In our present senses we always think of seeing. But we forget, what seeing power we have got? It is nothing. It is simply under certain condition we can see a little portion. We cannot see perfectly, so we should not believe in our seeing power. So therefore sastra says, atah sri-krsna-namadi na bhaved grahyam indriyaih: [BRS. 1.2.234] “You cannot understand Krsna and God by your present imperfect senses. That is not possible.” Na bhaved grahyam, “You cannot accept or you cannot receive by your blunt senses.” That is not possible. Then how it is possible? “I have… My only asset is these blunt senses. How can I understand God?” Yes. Sevonmukhe hi jihvadau svayam eva sphuraty adah. If you engage in devotional service, then God will reveal to you, “Here I am. Here I am. I am like this.” Just like Arjuna saw Krsna. He understood God. So if we take the position of Arjuna, submissive… Sisyas te ’ham sadhi mam prapannam, surrender, then God, by kindness, because you have surrendered, He will reveal to you. Otherwise by your so-called calculation, you cannot understand what is the greatest and what is the smallest. But there are things smaller than the smallest and the greater than the greatest. That’s all right. Thank you. [break] (initiations begin)

Prabhupada: So begin. [break] (fire sacrifice mantras) [break]

Syamasundara: Steve.

Prabhupada: How many rounds you will chant?

Devotee: Sixteen.

Prabhupada: So your name is Baladeva dasa. Hare Krsna. What are the rules? (Steve answers) Thank you

Syamasundara: Warren.

Prabhupada: So Satananda dasa. What are the rules and regulation? (Warren answers) (baby makes noise) Take her to her mother… How many rounds you will chant? (Warren answers) That’s nice. Vamanananda. Hare Krsna.

Syamasundara: Carol.

Prabhupada: What are the rules? (Carol answers) Thank you. Very good. Karlapati(?) dasi.

Syamasundara: Geoff.

Prabhupada: So what are the rules and regulation? (Geoff answers) Jitavrata dasa.

Syamasundara: Stuart.

Prabhupada: Chanting should be done like this, not to touch this finger. Like this. What are the rules and regulations.? (Stuart answers) Sutadeva dasa.

Syamasundara: Tom.

Prabhupada: Take. Govindam adi-purusam… What are the rules and regulation? (Tom answers) Taracandra.

Syamasundara: Janet.

Prabhupada: So what are the rules and regulation? (Janet answers) Janapriya dasi. Hare Krsna.

Syamasundara: Vasumi. Vasumi.

Prabhupada: She is Japanese?

Syamasundara: Yes.

Prabhupada: You are Japanese?

Vasumi: Yes.

Prabhupada: You know Japanese language?

Vasumi: (indistinct)

Prabhupada: Huh? Not very much. All right.

Devotee: She knows Japanese; very little English. She comes from Tokyo.

Prabhupada: Oh. Why she does not go to take charge of Tokyo branch? (laughter) Are you willing? You are not married? You are married or not?

Vasumi: Yes, I am married.

Prabhupada: That’s all right. Where is your husband? Oh. You know Japanese language?

Satyadeva: Just a little, Prabhupada.

Prabhupada: That’s all right. So what are the rules and regulation? Rules and regulation? What are the rules and regulation? (Vasumi answers) What is her name?

Syamasundara: Mahaguna.

Prabhupada: Very nice. Mahaguna dasi. All right. Hare Krsna. (end)