Radhanath Swami explains principles of religion do not stand on some dogmas or man-made formulas, but they stand on four primary regulative observances, namely austerity, cleanliness, mercy and truthfulness. The mass of people must be taught to practice these principles from childhood. Austerity means to accept voluntarily things which may not be very comfortable for the body but are conducive for spiritual realization, for example, fasting. Fasting twice or four times a month is a sort of austerity which may be voluntarily accepted for spiritual realizationonly, and not for any other purposes, political or otherwise. Fasting which are meant not for self-realization but for some other purposes are condemned in the Bhagavad-gétä (17.5-6). Similarly, cleanliness is necessary both for the mind and for the body. Simply bodily cleanliness may help to some extent, but cleanliness of the mind is necessary, and it is affected by glorifying the Supreme Lord. No one can cleanse the accumulated mental dust without glorifying the Supreme Lord. A godless civilization cannot cleanse the mind because it has no idea of God, and for this simple reason people under such a civilization cannot have good qualifications, however they may be materially equipped. We have to see things by their resultant action. The resultant action of human civilization in the age of Kali is dissatisfaction, so everyone is anxious to get peace of mind. This peace of mind was complete in the Satya age because of the existence of the above-mentioned attributes of the human beings. Gradually these attributes have diminished in the Tretä-yuga to three fourths, in the Dväpara to half, and in this age of Kali to one fourth, which is also gradually diminishing on account of prevailing untruthfulness. By pride, either artificial or real, the resultant action of austerity is spoiled; by too much affection for female association, cleanliness is spoiled; by too much addiction to intoxication, mercy is spoiled; and by too much lying propaganda, truthfulness is spoiled. The revival of bhägavata-dharma can save human civilization from falling prey to evils of all description.
You cannot find peace in material world.
The basic principle which support the real religion are here described austerity, cleanliness, mercy and truthfulness. One who follows this four basic principles in one’s life he is able to surrender to supreme personality of godhead. Krishna explains in Gita
mäm ekaà çaraëaà vraja
ahaà tväà sarva-päpebhyomokñayiñyämi mä çucaù
That we should abundant all varieties of religion just surrendered to him with faith that he will protect us from all sinful reactions and we should be free from fear. A devotee who has faith does not fear, does not worry because he knows the Krishna is the supreme personality of godhead. He is the controller of all controller in all of all cause and he always protects his devotees, if we surrendered to him what to we have to fear, Krishna promises my devotees will never be vanquished, devotees means one who surrenders to him so manyanxieties of brought about specially in this age of Kali Yuga. The atmosphere is so charged with so much agitation, so much deceit, so much sinful Karma permeating that everyone is disturbed, everyone is afraid, people are envious, people greedy, people are insecure and therefore there is no peace but how to achieve real peace everyone is speaking the politician, the philanthropist, the sociologist, the educationist everyone is speaking of peace but they do not know what is real peace. There is no peace in material consciousness jévo jévasya jévanam because this is the world that one living being is food for another living being, where the strong is always exploiting the weak, whether animal civilization or human civilization so how can we find the peace in this world. People think that they would be peaceful when they can conquer others because then they isolate their situation there are very few could challenged them that the opposite effect takes place the bigger you are, the greater you are the more people want to tear you down from your position on every level in politics if you never succeeded much in politics it’s not so much even agitation when you loss even election but when you are president or a prime minster or a king so many people are their trying to tear you down more than ever before you were thinking If I had that position I would be free from fearbut the higher u go more people want your position, want your money, want your prestige. So we have seen Srila Prabhupada often describe one great president of the United States, he ran so many elections and lost but he was very, very powerful politician and ultimately he became the president of United States and he made some mistake and all those who were envious against him they capitalized that mistake, they totally destroy his good name and tore him down from his position in great embarrassment and humiliation, the man practically went to hibernation due to total misery. So bigger you are, the greater you are the more people are trying to destroy you and the more its painful, the more your heart is filled with anxiety and distress when you lose what you have and you will lose it.
Similarly people in this world today are just crazy for athletic and sporting events we have seen in the west and now we are seeing in the great land ofBharat versa, people are stuck to the T.V’S and in the stadiums watching people this beating balls sticks in the west they beat each other. Anyways it’s all in the name of competition and we identify our self’s with whoever is particularly competing, it’s said in the Bhagvatam that one who identify with his place of birth is consider to be a dog, Ass or cow animal consciousness eva go-kharaù in the western world the athletics not only they are indentifying with their nation, they are identifying with their state and the city, every city has a sporting team and they are all fighting and people they just so proud and so anxious that their team win and team is very proud, a team that hardly ever wins nobody is much anxiety about it we have seen but when the team is the champion and there in the final play offs then they lose they are miserable, as much as well die they are so miserable and the whole city, the whole state, the whole country is totally is in anxiety, vanquished even some of our devotees previously they could not sleep for five nights I have been told you look around you will see who I mean. So you never meet it to the play offs you wouldn’t care if you win or lose, so in this way the bigger you are the more you suffer in this Material world and everyone wants to big thinking then I would be peaceful,l mäyä-sukhäya in this way Maya in her deceitful way cheats us.
More you want to become bigger in this material world then the more Maya wants to get you.
How a process is trying to achieve peace if actually irritating and aggravating our anxieties and our miseries and that is the fact wealthy people they want more and more wealth thinking now I am a small business man and there is so many other small business man but if I become big I could conquer all these small business man but then you become big just like in the ocean the shark is thinking is bigger than all the little fish and the whale is bigger than all the sharks but then amongst whale are always fighting with each other and of all fish human beings are most anxious to catch the whales because you can lot of money if you catch whale and in fact today the biggest the most powerful, the fearless of all fish the whale is in danger specie is that make sense you will think that no other fish can eat the whales so why of all the whale is in the danger specie because he is so big he is so great the humans they all want the whale. So on the same way the bigger we are in this Material world the more Maya wants to get us and the more shuck and ignorance to get us, the wealthy, the more powerfully, the more famous, the more highly educated, jévo jévasya jévanam so how to find peace in this world people just eating each other and killing each other and destroying each other, exploiting each other’s there is only that is to surrender to Krishna there is no other way so why not surrendered to Krishna why waste our time just agitating our miserable condition
jïätvä mäà çäntim åcchati
How Krishna protects his devotees?
Krishna is the reservoir of all opulence’s admit it,acceptit and glorify him, he is the supreme beautiful stop trying to beautiful, he is a supreme wealthy, he is supreme strong, he is the supreme knowledgeable, the supreme famous and supremely renounced, were all competing with each other trying to develop, create and exploit more and more of these opulence s and more we have the more miserable we become the more fearful and anxieties we become, the more we become a target to be challenged by Maya in her forces, Maya is a like a robber a thief, thief’s are not very much concerned with robbing very poor on the street but the wealthier you are the more opulence you have the more the thief’s are plotting and planning to take everything away and kill you, murder you what is what require. So on the same way we should understand that no peace will be derive through the material process but if we surrendered to Krishna by accepting he is the supreme proprietor of everything, he is the enjoyer of all that exist, he is our best friend. He always protects his devotees and how he protects his devotees this is the make subject in the Bhakti Shatra’s. Srimad Bhagvatam is the story of how Krishna protects his devotees it is sparkles Purana because the scriptures are trying to teach us how to have faith in Krishna protection, how Krishna protected the pandavas in so many ways even against all odds, even in most difficult tormenting conditions of this material existences, how Krishna protected Ambrish Maharaj he was just helplessly standing with folded palms as the fiery demon created by Durvas was about to devour him, a demon that could devour the entire planet within seconds was aiming all of his raff upon this one man, fiery demon he didn’t run for fire extinguisher, he didn’t call the fire department, he didn’t put on bestows suits, he just stood with folded palm and prayed Krishna I am your and Krishna protected him inconceivably.
How Praladh Maharaj in the most difficult circumstances he was not in any anxiety he was completely peaceful because he had faith that Krishna would protect him. Material world is the place of anxiety it is a place of deaf, it is a place of reversals it is not that because you become a devotee that material nature starts performing his function it will always perform his function. You will grow old, you will get disease then you will die whether you are devotees or not, whether you are devotees or not some people will love you and some people will hate you, some people want to help you and some people want to destroy you this the nature of the world and you are in this world you have choose to come here but if you take shelter of Krishna how does Krishna protect you by remaining always within your heart, like a lotus flower even in the dirtiest place it remains very nice, very pure, very clean because of its connection to the soil below. Similarly if our consciousness is always connected to Krishna and nourished by Krishna then we can find shelter and peace in every situation of life because for the body, the body is a violent place as it is always violence going on in the body various cells are fighting and various amoebas are fighting and everything just war is going on in the body you don’t even on the atomic level, bacterial level and time is constantly conquering every part of the body but when we realize, when we understand we are eternal soul then there is peace, spiespeace can only beyond the spiritual platform there is no peace on material platform.
Radhanath Swami on How you get peace by surrendering to Krishna.
At the most on the material platform were people call peace is a temporary illusion cease fire for the time being it doesn’t appear so we think that’s peace but actually when we not being attack we should know the enemy forces are just mobilizing and surrounding in bigger and better ways ready from greater attack can be peace in such a situation like that unless we transform the bodily concept of our life, unless we give up the propensity for sense enjoyment which permeate and perpetuate the bodily concept of life there is no real peace and the only way to do that
rasa-varjam raso ‘py asya
param drishtva nivartate
We must experience the higher taste; we must be resolute in our determination and experience the higher taste of Krishna consciousness. Now to surrender to Krishna it is explained in this verse that we must adopt the principles of austerity, cleanliness, mercy and truthfulness because practicing this principle as prerequisite surrender is impossible. Yoga means to ultimately combinating surrender to Krishna
janmanamante jnanavan mam prapadyate
Vasudeva Sarvamiti Sa Mahatma Sudurlava
Real meaning of austerity by Radhanath Swami
Srila Prahupada he explain there is no question of Yoga, there is no question of religion without this four principle’s, without sense control. So therefore in this Krishna consciousness movement the real and true process of surrendering is being given to us austerity it is describe here in that false pride destroys the principle of austerity therefore Shri Caitanya Mahaprabhu has taught
trinad api sunicena, taror api sahishnuna
amanina manadena, kirtaniya sada hari
We must make our goal in life to be more humble than blade of grass, more tolerant than tree ready to offer all respects to other’s and expect none in return; this is the real meaning of austerity. Austerity doesn’t simply mean giving up eating or giving up sleeping or giving up wearing clothes or giving up having sex, you can do all those things and still remain bound to material energy the greatest austerity is giving up our false pride and when we become humble then we actually become protected and covered by Krishna then all of these other things come naturally. Raghunath Das Goswami no one deprived his body of sense gratification more than him that was his condition making the few drops of butter milk a day sometimes forgetting that, hardly sleeping two hours, just picking up garbage, cloth copinand putting it on even in the cold, serious cold of the winter of northern India how did he survive, if we try to do we will die but he wasn’t trying to be austere, he wasn’t trying to become famous as a great Tapasi in fact nobody even knew what he was doing, Krishnaraj Kaviraj happen to be next door neighbor Radha Kund so he could see but it wasn’t been advertised but he was humble, because he was completely void of all pride he was naturally austere. So false pride destroy austerity therefore the basic principle of Krishna consciousness is humility then we can practice the real principle of austerity. Austerity means to accept what is favorable for Krishna consciousness and to reject what is not that is real austerity, Srila Prahupadawas not concerned with people performing grand, grand types of Tapasya he was concerned with people who was very hungry trying to follow the simple basic process of Krishna consciousness in the mood of being the servant of the servant of the Lord and his devotees.
External cleanliness means to clean our body.
Srila Prahupada explains there aretwo types of cleanliness, internal and external and they are both essential. Cleanliness is next to godliness externally, internally cleanliness is the very source of Godliness. So prabhupada was very, very much concerned that everything was kept clean because this is the preaching movement unless people how were clean they will not seriously how we trying to be clean within, Srila Prahupada in the west he told everyone you have to bathe first thing in the morning people in the west don’t bathe first thing in the morning, some people do but it’s quite rare countries like France when they heard this they said what is this, they invented perfume you know French perfume is the best perfume in the world as far as popularity among sense gratifiers and in every shop in United State of America and Europe they French colon and French perfumes and it’s just suppose to intoxicate you and make you smell so nice that everyone wants to be near you, what else they do is another thing but where is that invented by because traditionally French people hate to take baths they hate it, it just a terrible austerity for them. So therefore they created perfume so that they couldn’t smell so obnoxious and then just cover it with all these fragment oils so people don’t know that abominable, if they don’t put on the perfume one day no one could stand near them. Sometimes they don’t bathe for months or years at a time but every day they just cover themselves colon and perfumes and everyone says very, very nice so fragrant you are today and in the whole world paying good money to try to get this perfumes so they are simply filthy, simply dirty and what is your surroundings we know what we associate with influences our consciousness, if our body is dirty our consciousness is going to filled dirty by that connection, if the temple is dirty if our living condition our Ashram’s, our homes are dirty it’s going to create disorganized state of consciousness that is the fact.
Srila Prahupada said that our temples are homes, the devotees in surroundings, he said we should become famous throughout the world as being revolutionary clean, revolutionary clean that means amazingly cleaner than anyone and everyone else and we have seen temple that are so nice simple not that much but so clean and people just come and just say you people must be so spiritual you are so conscientious to keep every little detail clean, people have join our movement just by seeing cleanliness and people are left our because of seeing sloppiness and messiness it’s not a question of having money and opulent situation or whatever we have should be revolutionary kept clean, every inch should be meticulously looked after the halls ways of our temple, the stairs of temple room itself, the living coders, the places of storage we should not tolerate an unnecessary grain of dust, we should notice it, see it and remove it immediately because this is Krishna consciousness if we actually appreciate that the fact that it belong to Krishna how could be let it be dirty, if we understand the body is Krishna temple, it is Krishna property then how could bathe it, if we understand that our Ashram is Krishna abode, the temple is Krishna abode, the hall ways everything is Krishna how could be possible let be a mess, that means we are not Krishna consciousness we are Krishna unconsciousness. So cleanliness is very, very very vital principle in here at Shri Shri Radha Gopinath temple this should be a great emphasis not just one person but every single devotee they should not walked by something laying that not suppose to be and think that someone else will take care of it, everything should be spotlessly revolutionary clean twenty four hours a day and how to clean the body and how to clean our facilities Srila Prahupada says with we clean with water washing.
Internal cleanliness means to clean the mind.
Internal cleanliness comes through glorifying Krishna through the process hearing and chanting Shravanam, Kirtanaam, Vishna Smaranam because the mind is the very, very dirty place, one of the qualities of the dirty place externally is when a room is just clouded with so much that you don’t even need and just creating such a mess you don’t even know what is there and what is not there and in t mess so many roaches and so many rats and everything is just surviving. So our mind is like that if we our room like our mind will be more like that because we influence by our surrounding, so we could our living condition very, very organized neat and clean but for so many births we have been accumulating so many junk in a stored room of our mind, so many old moldings blankets of material desires, so many useless things how to clean the mind of all of the rubbish of material desire that have been accumulated and gathered birth after, birth after, birth after, birth after birth the process of hearing and chanting the glories of the Lord by regularly hearing Srimad Bhagvatam, Bhagvad Gita, Caitanya Caritamrita and another such Bhakti shastra’s and by very, very attentively every single day according to our Guru Maharaj’s instruction chanting Krishna name Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare/ Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare by just cleanliness of body is not you take bath and then you clean forever you must do it every single day, according to Bhrahmanical standards three times a day morning, noon and evening that is the standard of cleanliness and far as facilities empting the garbage, cleaning the floors, cleaning the walls getting rid of unnecessary garbage and accumulation it must be done everyday several times a day this is how we facilities clean externally and the mind every day several times a day we must chant our Gayatri Mantra three times a day for cleanliness, we must chant 16 rounds minimum every day for cleanliness, we must hear Srimad Bhagvatam class, Gita every day for cleanliness this will make our mind clean and mercy off course hear Srila Prahupada explains too much affection for female association cleanliness is spoiled what is that mean, we talking about internal cleanliness of the mind because too much infatuation and attachments to the opposite sex awakens lusty desire and that lusty desires is dirt, it is filth, it makes our mind a filthy place the whole Varanashram system is scientific systematic organization of society to give up lusty desires. First twenty five years Bhramachari, very severe restriction from the opposite sex why took our mind clean, too keep it focus on God to keep lusty desires and lusty impression away, in Grihasta Ashram is very much different than Ghriha-medi ashram, Grihasta ashram means living with wife or husband procreating having children but doing it according to spiritual principles, sex is for the service of God for procreation and ghrihasta should Strive for that standard and then husband and wife they see each other as God brothers and God sisters first and husband and wife second, they see each other as Vaishnava and they must honor each other this very essential because you exploit a Vaishnava that is an appradh. So we must honor and respect one and other not sees other as object of sense gratification but seeing each other as devotees, as represented of Guru and Krishna and through that process in the grihasta ashram the infatuation of sex desire is minimize and hopefully eliminated there is restriction and in and Varnaprasth ashram although after the children are raised and they retired from occupational duties we may be with our husband or wife but our only purpose together is bhajan and sadhna and Guru Seva and showing compassion to fallen souls and off course means no connection like this.
So in this the varanashram system is to keep the mind clean and for most to not be infatuated by exposing oneself to circumstances that awaken lusty desires because that also everything, everything is ruined when we become infatuated by lusty desires. When we become to this sex desires we become proud, so proud we have seen when a man become attach to the women, when a women become attach to the man in a improper way he become so proud they want to show that I am the best, they always trying to be the hero to their partner. In the west they want to show how can physically beat up all other man I am so strong, I am so athletic, I am so learned usually to impress your husband and impress your wife you do all this things yes! Person who is not attach to this things is not so difficult to overcome is not so difficult. So sex desire create so much pride and greed just like we read about Ajamil when he became infatuated by this type consciousness he became so greedy he had to keep showing off to his consort, he had to constantly reaffirming his greatness by providing so many things and then he become envious because here is my object of sense enjoyment it must be everybody object too everyone’s want what I have. So all bad qualities come when lust awaken in the heart, and then our mind becomes like that storage bin that become accumulate more and more and more and more Anarthas or unwanted, unnecessary trash of material impression and desires. So we must learn how to create this inner cleanliness.
Intoxication destroys the principle of mercy.
Mercy, mercy is the willingness to extent oneself to the benefit of another to have sympathy and compassion for those who are in distress, for those who are in need that is mercy and it is describe here the intoxication destroys the sense of mercy, why can anyone say? How does intoxication destroy the principle of mercy? Because when you become intoxicated your mind becomes completely self centered when you take drugs and you take alcohol and of these other things we just become completely immersed in infatuated by yourself and the demands and the anxieties or the pleasures that is been deriving. We can give some examples cigarettes when you become addicted to cigarettes you can’t stop smoking cigarettes your whole mind, your whole consciousness just make you habituate to cigarette, why do you have to have a cigarette because that cigarette is just satisfying a burning desire in me. You become completely engrossed in yourself and trying to satisfy yourself and trying to be compassionate to giving pleasure to yourself and giving relief to yourself and to that extent you cannot extend yourself to even consider or see the distress of other, mercy to be some selfless and intoxication makes you totally selfish. When you drink alcohol you can even see world properly any more you just completely go into your own mental conception of the world, sometimes there is some relief when you are a drunker for some temporary time because you forget about the world and you forget about the suffering and miseries of others and you just somehow other you become so engrossed in your own mind and your body drugs like L.S.D and young would take old people whoever it just looking all these hallucination and all these colors and all these ecstasy of material nature and you just completely immersed and engrossed in your own selfish condition of life and we find drug addicts, alcoholics, chain all these kinds of people who take too much intoxication there consciousness is so terribly, terribly immersed in just somehow other relieving themselves of anxiety. Therefore it destroys the conception of mercy, we can no longer reach out the really feel true sympathy for others for help, makes your heart hard. So mercy means to be charitable and off course the highest and purest spiritual form of mercy is to be chartable towards the soul, the aatma of others not just the body not just the mind but ultimately to the soul, the greatest mercy helping a person understand the goal of life, help in convince a person to live a pure life and to chant the holy names Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare/ Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare.
Radhanath Swami on How Maya is trying to break the last leg of truthfulness.
It is explained here that too much lying propaganda spoil truthfulness, Rupa Goswami explains that we must be straight forwards in our dealings, we should be simple this actually a definition of simplicity. Srila Prahupada said Krishna consciousness means simple living and high thinking what the mean to be simple, it means without duplicity that’s all without duplicity if you are humble we can be simple. We can just what is the truth because we have no alternative motives, we can be honest we don’t have to lie or cheat or bribe or steal to try to get something done for our own personal self interest because we are detached renunciation, real renunciation means you are become completely truthful because you are nothing to leave, if have some defects I am not trying to present myself as something great so I will say yes I am a fallen soul, yes I have these problems. Why not you are not trying to put on some image for the world to touch our feet we just be honest, just be truthful and when devotees are truthful with each other then they trust each other and when there is trust gradually love awaken us, you cannot love someone very well unless you trust them and Srila Prahupada explained this movement is based on the principle of love and trust so it is very important devotees have to be completely honest with one and others on every level socially, physically, spiritually the ultimate truthfulness is to only repeat the words of God do not speculate, do not concoct that is truthfulness. Srila Prahupada we gave our life to him because he was truthfulness, he didn’t give his opinions he simply repeated the word of God which is the absolute truth when we live by the absolute words and when we repeat the absolute truth words then we are truthful but also on another level we have to be truthful in our ordinary dealings with each other that is also very, very important we can speak perfect philosophy but if we are not truthful in our ordinary daily dealings with each other people will not be impress by big big philosophy words according shastras. So we have to repeat the truth live by the truth and be honest and simple in our daily relationship that is truthfulness.
We read Srimad Bhagvatam and we become immersed in the truth, other’s they watch the television which is practically all nothing but lying propaganda, others read the newspapers and magazines which is so much lying propaganda, so much ill motivation going into those things you associate with that you lose the quality of truthfulness in the age of Kali Yuga truthfulness is the last leg that standing and Maya is like that Kali with the stick trying to break that last leg, it already broken the other leg now just one last leg remains. So you see how Maya, how the deceitful personality of Kali is trying to destroy that leg of truthfulness how everybody addicted to the television, everyone addicted to the newspapers, everyone addicted to the novels, addicted to so many magazines this whole mass media it’s so much lying propaganda would be influenced and associating with all these lying destroy that last leg, kali is expert just see how expert the one leg that ‘s left and whole world is addicted to thing that destroys the leg of truthfulness. No, no if you don’t daily read all newspaper, magazines, television, radios and all these other things people think you antisocial they think something wrong with you, you are crazy this is to the degree Kali is become the emperor of this age, completely ruling over if you don’t to Kali you are considered and outcast, impractical, useless, foolish, uniformed and uneducated because you read Srimad Bhagvatam, because you come to Srimad Bhagvatam class, because you attend nice Kirtaans and also what is the age of quarrel and hypocrisy Maya is also is trying to destroy the leg of truthfulness by so much false pride and everything else that we are not willing to admit who we are, where were at we are all trying to be something else, trying to present our self as someone else and therefore in quarrel and hypocrisy nobody trust each other anymore even family member it is very rare that they trust each other, children don’t their parents. America is the land that the whole world is chasing to become like that was the model of young generation in the fifties and sixties, it was like the world cry anyone over thirty you can never trust, anyone over thirty told you anything you just know that you can’t trust it just wrong they have some motive and we hear like that parents don’t trust the children what did you do today, child say I studied parents what kind of things nobody trust,
people don’t trust the political leaders anymore, they don’t trust their friends anymore, they don’t trust their family anymore and this the last leg of religion and as Srila Prahupada explain it wobbling, it is practically finished and only five thousand of over four hundred and thirty two thousand years of Kali have pass and just see how this last leg is wobbling and how Maya is doing thorough job in Kali.
So these four principles of austerity, cleanliness, mercy and truthfulness must be followed and our hope process of Krishna consciousness is these four legs as we have explained and by following these principles we surrendered to Krishna by following them on under the authorizes spiritual master and disciple succession we learn the process of surrendering to Krishna and in that surrendered there is real shelter, there is real peace, there is real happiness, there is real meaning and purpose to our life and there is no other way. We should give up all false hope in any other process of peace of outside of surrendering to Krishna through the process that Shri Guru and Shri Gauranga has given us.