Srimad-Bhagavatam 1.7.6
by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Vrndavana, September 5, 1976


anarthopasamam saksad bhakti-yogam adhoksaje lokasyajanato vidvams cakre satvata-samhitam

“The material miseries of the living entity, which are superfluous to him, can be directly mitigated by the linking process of devotional service. But the mass of people do not know this, and therefore the learned Vyasadeva compiled this Vedic literature, which is in relation to the Supreme Truth.”

Prabhupada: We were discussing this verse yesterday. Anartha. This anartha means this material civilization. There is no need, and still we have accepted it. That is called anartha, meaningless. So there are hundreds and thousands of anarthas, as it is stated that srotavyadini rajendra nrnam santi sahasrasah [SB 2.1.2]. Sahasrasah means thousands and thousands. Because we have created anartha, unnecessary necessities of life, therefore we have to know, we have to learn, we have to teach so many unwanted… Just like there is a problem now, especially in the Western countries, unwanted population. They do not want, but it is increasing. Similarly, unwanted necessities. This is called anartha. Simple thing. Just like we require some food. That is essential. We cannot live without taking food. That is not possible. So Krsna is giving very simple formula, that annad bhavanti bhutani. If there is sufficient quantity of anna, or eatables, then people become very nice, well-satisfied, either animal or man. If he can eat sufficiently, he’s satisfied. So annad bhavanti bhutani. Bhavanti means flourish. He becomes healthy, he becomes strong, and he can think nicely, he can work nicely. So anna is required. But simple method is given how anna is produced. That is also given, annad bhavanti bhutani parjanyad anna-sambhavah. If there is sufficient rain, then you can easily produce food grain. Just like this year, the rain is sufficient; everywhere we go it is green. Green means sufficient food for the animals. And if the field is very soft, you can till it and you can get easily, very nicely, foodstuff. Therefore parjanya, water, rain, is required. Parjanyad anna-sambhavah. And yajnad bhavati parjanyah [Bg. 3.14] And by performing yajna there will be cloud and rain.

That was the… Yajna is required. In this age, Kali-yuga, it is very difficult to perform the Vedic ritualistic yajnas. It requires tons of ghee and food grains. And people have nothing to eat even. But sastra has made it very easy. Yajnaih sankirtana-prayair yajanti hi su-medhasah [SB 11.5.32]. If you perform the sankirtana-yajna, then it is as good any other yajna. Yajna means to satisfy the yajna-purusa, Visnu, Lord Visnu. So in the Kali-yuga, simply by performing yajnas you can satisfy the Supreme Lord. Yajnaih sankirtana-prayair yajanti hi su-medhasah. We have seen in many places by performing yajna, the sankirtana-yajna, where it was very dry, rain has fallen. This is practical. So things are very easy. But instead of producing food grains, we are producing Goodyear tires. So how we can eat? Now when there is scarcity of foodstuff you cannot eat the Goodyear tires. But people’s attention has been diverted in the industrial activities. They are given allurement, “Come here. I shall give you twenty rupees per day. You give up your agricultural activities. You come in the factory. Produce tire tube, iron stool,” and so on so on. So we are violating the orders of Krsna. Krsna says that produce foodgrain. But we are producing unnecessary things. And therefore you are suffering. Krsna is giving very good advice: annad bhavanti bhutani. You produce sufficient foodgrain, all over, not only here. Another anartha is this nationalism. Nationalism: “This is America,” “This is India,” “This is Africa,” “This is Australia.” Why? Isavasyam idam sarvam. Simple thing. Everything belongs to God. Isavasya. There will be no scarcity. I have studied very thoroughly that there are sufficient land still without any cultivation. In Africa I have seen sufficient land. But they are utilizing it for producing coffee and tea. No food grains. So these are the anarthas. Anartha. Unnecessary. People will not die without coffee and tea. But they have made the whole world self-dependent on coffee and tea, mercantile policy. There is anartha.

So anartha, if you want happy life, peaceful life, progressive life, then you have to curtail these anarthas. Anartha-nivrttih syat. Without curtailing these anarthas, unwanted things, you cannot become happy. So that is recommended here. Anartha-nivrttih syat saksad bhaktim adhoksaje. As soon as you become a devotee, all anarthas become immediately vanquished. Just like here, these Europeans and Americans, they are accustomed to anarthas from the very beginning of their life. And the latest anartha was their intoxication, LSD. But by bhakti-yoga, because they have taken to bhakti-yoga, very easily they have given all these habits. Even government is surprised. In Europe, and especially in America, their government is spending millions of dollars to stop this LSD habit. They cannot do it. They praise our movement in this connection. And as soon as one comes to this movement, he immediately gives up. Immediately, without any hesitation. I make this first condition, that you have to give up all kinds of intoxication. Not only LSD, but even drinking tea, coffee, smoking, everything you have to give up. Chewing pan, everything. And they agree. We do not make any compromise that “You can do any nonsense and still you become initiated. Give me some money.” No. We don’t make such compromise. You must first of all agree to give up all these sinful activities. Then I can accept you. I can initiate you. This is our process.

So compulsory, the government is trying to make compulsory, but that cannot. You cannot make a person honest simply by legislation. He must be vimarsanam. Prayascittam vimarsanam. One must be fully conscious, “Now what I am doing, it is wrong.” Then anartha-nivrttih syat. Just like a person who is a thief, he knows that “I am stealing, and if I am arrested, I’ll be punished.” He knows that. And he has seen that one thief is arrested. So we get two kinds of experiences. One kind of experience by hearing: “If you do this, then the result will be this.” That is hearing. And one kind of experience by directly seeing. So the thief has both. He has seen that a thief has been punished, and he knows by hearing from the lawbooks or from religious books that stealing is not good. But still he commits repeatedly, again and again stealing. Why? Because he has no knowledge. Therefore knowledge is essential. That knowledge can be revived. This is krsna-kirtana. Caitanya Mahaprabhu has recommended, ceto-darpana-marjanam bhava-maha-davagni-nirvapanam sreyah-kairava-candrika-vitaranam vidya-vadhu-jivanam, anandambudhi-vardhanam [Cc. Antya 20.12]. You want ananda, anandamayo ’bhyasat. Everyone is seeking after ananda. So purnananda. Param vijayate sri-krsna-sankirtanam. This is Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s recommendation.

So bhakti-yoga means chanting. Sravanam kirtanam visnoh [SB 7.5.23]. This is the beginning. Hear about Visnu, chant about Visnu. Sravanam kirtanam visnoh. No, not any other. Sastra says Visnu. But there are many rascals, they say you can chant any name. Why? Why the sastra says sravanam kirtanam visnoh, chanting and hearing about Visnu, not for any other god? That is not recommended. But they make. Because they are impersonalists, they have no God, they have made “God means imagination.” But God is not imagination. God—here is Krsna. He’s not imagination. He says aham adir hi devanam, “I am the origin of everyone.”

aham sarvasya prabhavo mattah sarvam pravartate iti matva bhajante mam budha bhava-samanvitah [Bg. 10.8]

So because you do not know what is God, so our life is void. But here Krsna is personally coming, yada yada hi dharmasya glanir bhavati bharata [Bg. 4.7] What is that glani? Dharmasya glanih. That you are very dharmika, so-called dharmika, but you have no understanding what is God—that is nonsense. That is not dharma. Dharmam tu saksad bhagavat-pranitam [SB 6.3.19]. Dharma means the order of God. That if you do not know God, if you manufacture your God, “God has no head, no mouth, no nose, no nothing, no, no, no, ultimately zero…” Ultimately zero. So there are two kinds of dangerous person. One person is atheist, agnostic. And another person is Mayavadi, impersonalist. Nirvisesa-sunyavadi. Therefore these two things are mentioned: Mayavadi, “God means has no head, no leg,” and sunyavadi, “There is no God.” So the person who says “There is no God,” he’s gentleman, because he does not believe. But the person who takes the shelter of Vedas and professes that “I am vaidika, I am vedanti,” and refuses the form of God, he’s more dangerous.

It is the statement of Caitanya Mahaprabhu.

veda na maniya bauddha haya ta’ nastika vedasraya nastikya-vada bauddhake adhika

The nastika, the Buddhists, they are called nastika according to our sastra, because Lord Buddha denied the existence, the authority of the Vedas.

nindasi yajna-vidher ahaha sruti-jatam sadaya-hrdaya darsita-pasu-ghatam kesava dhrta-buddha-sarira jaya jagadisa hare

Kesava dhrta-buddha-sarira. Kesava, Krsna has come, taking the form of Lord Buddha. We Vaisnava, we worship Lord Buddha as the incarnation of Kesava, Krsna, but we don’t accept his philosophy. So there is a great history. We have mentioned many times. So these Buddhists, they say that “We do not recognize your Vedas.” So veda na maniya bauddha haya ta’ nastika. Therefore we call them agnostic. They do not… Because why we do not accept them authority? Because if you do not accept the authority of the Vedas, then you become godless immediately. Because Krsna said vedais ca sarvair aham eva vedyah [Bg. 15.15]. If you do not understand Vedic knowledge, if you do not understand Vedanta, if you do not understand Upanisad—without understanding this Vedic knowledge, understanding of the Supreme Personality of Godhead is vague. It is no clear idea. Therefore Srila Rupa Gosvami has said,

sruti-smrti-puranadi-pancaratra-vidhim vina aikantiki harer bhaktir utpatayaiva kalpate [BRS 1.2.101]

If one is not in awareness of the conclusion of Vedas, conclusion of the smrti, conclusion of the Puranas, and pancaratra-vidhi. Narada-pancaratra, aikantiki harer bhaktih, without reference to this Vedic literature, Srila Rupa Gosvami has said utpata, simply disturbance. Simply a disturbance. Manufacturing. They’ll manufacture some ways. There are so many anarthas. If we come to detail it will take long, long time.

Anyway, if we want to, I mean to say, abolish all kinds of anarthas, unwanted things, then we must take to bhakti-yoga. Then everything will be clear. Everything will be clear, very clear. Srnvatam sva-kathah. This srnvatam sva-kathah, just like you are so kind enough to come here to hear about Krsna, Krsna consciousness, by this process. This has been recommended by Caitanya Mahaprabhu: sthane sthitah sruti-gatam tanu-van-manobhih. You remain in your place. You don’t require to become a sannyasi, mendicant, or brahmacari, or change your place. No. When Ramananda Raya quoted this verse from Srimad-Bhagavatam to Caitanya Mahaprabhu… He was discussing about the aim of life and the process of reaching the aim of life. He mentioned so many things—karma, jnana, yoga, etc., so many things. Caitanya Mahaprabhu said, eho bahya, age kaha ara: “Yes, this statement is not very important. If you know still further more, you can say.” So in this way, step by step… When Ramananda Raya came to this conclusion, that

jnane prayasam udapasya namanta eva jivanti san-mukharitam bhavadiya-vartam sthane sthitah sruti-gatam tanu-van-manobhir ye prayaso ’jita jito ’py asi tais tri-lokyam

This is the statement, that remain in your place, but hear from the authorities about Krsna, then everything will be clear. Srnvatam sva-kathah krsnah punya-sravana-kirtanah [Bhag. 1.2.17] Even if you do not understand a word, but if you hear from the realized soul about Krsna, then, hrdy antah-stho hy abhadrani vidhunoti suhrt satam. Krsna is situated in everyone’s heart, isvarah sarva-bhutanam hrd-dese ’rjuna tisthati [Bg. 18.61]. If we become sincere to hear about Krsna, then Krsna will help us. Tesam satata-yuktanam bhajatam priti-purvakam, dadami buddhi-yogam [Bg. 10.10]. He’ll give intelligence. This is the process. Tesam evanukampartham aham ajnana-jam tamah nasayami [Bg. 10.11]. These things are there.

Therefore if we want to abolish all unwanted things of life, simply we come to the spiritual platform. Because that is our aim. Athato brahma jijnasa. This human life is meant for spiritual understanding, not for any other purpose. Tasyaiva hetoh prayateta kovidah, sastra recommends. Only for spiritual understanding engage your activities. And what will be other things, about my family life, worldly life? That is said that tal labhyate duhkhavad anyatah sukham. Just like you don’t aspire or don’t wish for distressed condition. It comes upon you. Similarly, whatever happy condition in your life is expected, that will also come. You don’t require… There are many places. So our endeavor, the human energy should be fully engaged in understanding Krsna. This is Krsna consciousness movement. Nothing else. Other things we should minimize. Yavad artha-prayojanam. Just to maintain the body and soul together you should live very nicely. You should not become weak by health; otherwise, we cannot execute. But don’t eat more, don’t eat unnecessary things. Atyaharah prayasas ca prajalpo niyamagrahah. Atyahara, to eat more or to collect more than is required, that is forbidden by Rupa Gosvami.

atyaharah prayasas ca prajalpo niyamagrahah jana-sangas ca laulyam ca sadbhir bhaktir vinasyati

So anartha-nivrtti, that is required because we are surrounded by so many anarthas, unwanted things. They are all impediments, stumbling blocks on our progressive journey to Krsna realization. Here it is said anartha-nivrttih syat bhakti-yogam adhoksaje lokasyajanatah. People do not know it. Therefore vidvan, Vedavyasa, he has compiled this Srimad-Bhagavatam. Satvata-samhita. It is Vedic version, and directly to understand the Supreme Personality of Godhead and become free from all contamination of the material nature. Because we are now under the contamination of material nature.

prakrteh kriyamanani gunaih karmani sarvasah ahankara-vimudhatma kartaham iti manyate [Bg. 3.27]

We are thinking we are very independent, we can do any nonsense, whatever we like. Who cares for…? But that is not good, because we are not independent. We are completely under the grip of material nature. Simply as a crazy man we declare independence. That is not a very good idea. We must know what are the anarthas and how we shall get out of it.

Thank you very much. (end)