Om namo Bhagvate Vasudevaya.

nara-devatvam āpannaḥ



cakre vīryāṇy ataḥ param

(SB 1.3.22)


Translation : 

In the eighteenth incarnation, the Lord appeared as King Rāma. In order to perform some pleasing work for the demigods, He exhibited superhuman powers by controlling the Indian Ocean and then killing the atheist King Rāvaṇa, who was on the other side of the sea.


Purport :

The Personality of Godhead Śrī Rāma assumed the form of a human being and appeared on the earth for the purpose of doing some pleasing work for the demigods or the administrative personalities to maintain the order of the universe. Sometimes great demons and atheists like Rāvaṇa and Hiraṇyakaśipu and many others become very famous due to advancing material civilization by the help of material science and other activities with a spirit of challenging the established order of the Lord. For example, the attempt to fly to other planets by material means is a challenge to the established order. The conditions of each and every planet are different, and different classes of human beings are accommodated there for particular purposes mentioned in the codes of the Lord. But, puffed up by tiny success in material advancement, sometimes the godless materialists challenge the existence of God. Rāvaṇa was one of them, and he wanted to deport ordinary men to the planet of Indra (heaven) by material means without consideration of the necessary qualifications. He wanted a staircase to be built up directly reaching the heavenly planet so that people might not be required to undergo the routine of pious work necessary to enter that planet. He also wanted to perform other acts against the established rule of the Lord. He even challenged the authority of Śrī Rāma, the Personality of Godhead, and kidnapped His wife, Sītā. Of course Lord Rāma came to chastise this atheist, answering the prayer and desire of the demigods. He therefore took up the challenge of Rāvaṇa, and the complete activity is the subject matter of the Rāmāyaṇa. Because Lord Rāmacandra was the Personality of Godhead, He exhibited superhuman activities which no human being, including the materially advanced Rāvaṇa, could perform. Lord Rāmacandra prepared a royal road on the Indian Ocean with stones that floated on the water. The modern scientists have done research in the area of weightlessness, but it is not possible to bring in weightlessness anywhere and everywhere. But because weightlessness is the creation of the Lord by which He can make the gigantic planets fly and float in the air, He made the stones even within this earth to be weightless and prepared a stone bridge on the sea without any supporting pillar. That is the display of the power of God. The Supreme Personality of Godhead assumed the form of a human being.

In the eighteenth incarnation, the Lord appeared as King Rāma. In order to perform some pleasing work for the demigods, He exhibited superhuman powers by controlling the Indian Ocean and then killing the atheist King Rāvaṇa, who was on the other side of the sea.


Srimad Bhagvatam.. a Perfect Book for mankind

In the First Canto it is describing the principle, manifestations or incarnations of the Supreme Personality of Godhead throughout the history of this creation. Srimad Bhagvatam histories are not limited to a particular country, to a particular planet or to a particular universe but it are describing various activities of the Lord & His pure devotees which are taking place in various places and various times throughout the many manifested creations. After all Srimad Bhagvatam is spoken by Sukhdev Goswami & written by VedaVyas. VedaVyas is a special personality, Tri kala Gyan which means because he is the literary incarnation of the Lord, he can see the past, the present & the future. It is described in the Gita. Vedaham sarva Gitani vartamanani charjauna bhavishyani cha bhutani mam tu ved na kaschana (BG 7.26) Krishna says that everything that is happening in the past I know. I know all things happening at the present moment. I know every activity, every thought, and every word of every living being throughout all of existence. And I also know everything completely that is yet to come.  I know every living being in full to every minutest detail but no one can know Me in full. So the Srimad Bhagvatam is not going to be like the literature of this world because it is the word of God, the All Knowing. VedVyas was the incarnation in literal form of Sri Vishnu therefore we accept that whatever is in Bhagvatam is perfect. It is perfect because it is coming from the perfect Source. And we also accept that it is inconceivable,Achintya Shakti. The Lord has inconceivable potencies. And the Bhagvatam is especially dealing with these inconceivable potencies.


Krishna’s Activities are Abhigya & Swarat..

People of this world are so much conditioned to the news of the radio & the television and the newspapers where everything is based on the relative activities of conditioned souls and therefore we have a certain conditioned idea of what is possible & what is not possible. When we read mundane history books about various wars and various discoveries and various political revolutions, they are all done by people who have fallen to the lowest most degraded position of material life. After all just to come to this material world, for the eternal soul is a very low degraded position. Therefore what can such infinitesimal conditioned beings do that is very great? And if they do something little greater than somebody else, then it is considered wonderful. And then everyone must read about it, see it, and talk about it. But Srimad Bhagvatam is something completely different. Srimad Bhagvatam is describing the activities of the Supreme Absolute truth that has no limitation who is Abhigya & Swarat. Abhigya means all knowing & Swarat means Krishna can do anything he wants, anytime he wants. Sarveshavara Ishvara, He is the Controller of all Controllers. There is nothing impossible for God. If there was anything impossible for God, there would be no such thing as God. Because God by definition means The Complete Whole, The Supreme Controller. So therefore it is not difficult that all to have faith in any story that comes in the authoritative literatures such as Srimad Bhagvatam. A devotee can immediately accept, if someone says “How is that possible?” Srila Prabhupada is giving, even in this material world we can see what God is doing.


Unlimited Power of Lord Ramachandra & monkey Soldiers

It is described here that Sri Ram, He built the beautiful bridge across the Indian Ocean. If we want to build a bridge, what do we have to do? We have to get big big construction crew with all kinds of machines & pollute the atmosphere with noise & all sorts of gases. And then we have to take & put pillars going down into the ocean or build the suspension bridges. It takes a long long time many many years to build it across the ocean. No body could even imagine building a bridge across the ocean.  If we can build a bridge across San Francisco Bay, may be six seven miles, if you can it is a great accomplishment. The Golden Gate Bridge is famous through out the world the Brooklyn bridge is about 3 miles.. But they are talking about 800 miles. And how did Ram do it? He simply took rocks, but not ordinary rocks, not like the little  rocks that we see in the temple. Because after all He had to get the whole army across the bridge, all at once. He was taking peaks of mountains which were miles & miles wide and tying them together with vines & putting it. And it was all done in a matter of hours. So materialist will think this must be some sort of mythology, some sort of symbolic fiction, because after all how could these rocks, each one of them must have weighed hundreds of tons. How did they float in water? Is it so difficult to understand?


Krishna is Sarva Shaktiman..!!

Srila Prabhupada has explained that right before your eyes God is doing something millions of times greater. Floating something on water is not nearly as difficult as floating something in air. Ha? Water has more density than air. And Krishna has taken planets & right before our eyes when we look in the sky, we see the stars. The planet that we are talking & walking on right now is floating in the air. There’s no pillar, no suspension bridges. How is it possible? And this earth is one of the smallest planets in the solar system that we know of. Planets like Venus, Jupiter these are the planets that we know that are many times larger than this earth. And the Sun planet is thousands of times larger than this earth. It’s since time immemorial for millions & millions of years they are all floating. They never crash into each other; they always keep the exact same distance from one another. And then people will say that’s not God, that’s gravity. But where does gravity come from? It is just such an incredible invention that keeps these gigantic, enormous bodies of matter moving, rotating perfect order through time immemorial.

That is the direction of Krishna. So for Sri Ram to float these rocks on ocean that was very easy. Ocean is salt water, in salt water everything floats easier anyway. That was very easy. In fact to float the sun in the air is very easy thing. When Krishna appeared on this earth He lifted the Govardhan hill on the little finger of His left hand for seven days. And He was simply smiling. It was easy. That mountain today is 22 miles around if you want to walk around it. But for Krishna, nothing is difficult. So here we are reading from the Srimad Bhagvatam. And therefore we accept all these stories as history. And however inconceivably wonderful, beyond our imagination the Lord works, it simply increases our appreciation and love for Him. That’s why He comes in this world in the first place. How is it that Krishna had 16,108 wives, 16,108 houses & and all His servants and all His relatives they were all living on the island called  Dwaraka there’s no room, it will be more  crowded  than Bombay why would He want them in a crazy place like that? But there was plenty room, Krishna could put the whole population of the earth on a needle & there would be plenty room for everybody. Everyone would have 10 acres of land. How is that possible? For Krishna what is impossible? Inconceivable potency, if you could conceive of God, what use is He? He would be like us. We are conceivable. Therefore when a devotee, when he reads these beautiful stories it simply increases his faith & love. So today on the auspicious occasion of Dessert, we are reading this verse from the Srimad Bhagvatam describing the purpose of Rams incarnation. The external reason why He appeared was to kill the great atheist demon Ravana. Because He was causing so much trouble, so much pain to the devotees.

Ravana manifestation of Sense Gratification

pariträëäya sädhünäà

vinäçäya ca duñkåtäm


sambhavämi yuge yuge

(BG 4.8)

Whenever there is a rise in irreligion, I come to establish the principles of religion & to annihilate the demons & to protect my devotees.

Story of Killing of Ravana is amazing. Ravana represents, although he is a historical person, he represents what is manifesting within everyone’s heart and throughout society today. The desire to enjoy the property of God without the sanction or favor of God. The desire & the ambition to manipulate the resources of God’s nature for ones own sense gratification. Krishna has created & established order within each universe within creation. And that established order is that as we sow so shall we reap. For every action there is equal corresponding reaction. The laws of karma. If you do evil, you must suffer evil consequences & if you do pious work, you will accept enjoyment of great pious reaction. And if you surrender to God, you can transcend this material existence altogether and return to Krishna. But pious work entails sacrifice. Giving up ones own immediate demands of the mind and senses. To be and good to others. And for such persons there are heavenly planets. Where the duration of life is far longer, the capacity to enjoy is far more. Ravana did not want to go to the kingdom of God. He wanted to make this universe his kingdom. And it is described how Ravana wanted to entered into the world of the heavens, the higher planets. But he didn’t care anything for doing pious activities to deserve. But by his own prowess, he had great prowess  than any human being, he wanted to build a staircase to Indras abode, bring his armies up there & conquer them.


Nature of Demons…

Following Ravana people in this world, they are so proud, they are so puffed up. Following very carefully the footsteps of Ravana, trying to create a wonderful situation for themselves to enjoy by their own means, by their own powers, control. Ravana wanted to enjoy by being a controller and create wonderful comforts & wonderful Prestige for himself by his control. To the extent that he wanted to enjoy the Goddess of Fortune Sita. For his own greedy, selfish, lusty purposes. Now everything within this creation is the energy of the Lord. It is all Sita; it is all the expansion of the energy of Sita. Whatever we see as fortune is it not? Everything in this world is form of a fortune and Sita is Goddess of fortune. If you try to enjoy even the slightest thing for your own sense gratification, what you are doing is you are trying to enjoy Sita. But Sita is meant for Krishna or Rams enjoyment. Sita is chaste; she does not want to be enjoyed by anyone but Ram. And great devotee like Hanuman, his life was dedicated simply to bring Sita back to Ram. His whole existence was dedicated to just one principle that let Ram enjoy Sita. Let me some how or other assist in this wonderful, pleasurable pastime between Sita & Ram. And similarly Bharat , Lakshman, Maharaj Guha, all of the devotees of Ramayan they had one singular purpose in their lives: to reunite Sita & Ram & assist in their pleasurable pastimes. But the demons, they want to steal Sita away from Ram. So that they could exploit her. That is the difference. We find Lakshman, how devoted He was to His brother Ram! It is said that for the many many years in the exile to forest the three of them, Lakshman never even looked at the face of Sita.  He simply always looked at her lotus feet. Because He knew that her face was meant for Rams enjoyment.  Such a consciousness! But Ravana, we cannot even speak of what he wanted to do to Sita. Because he was so proud. Because he had so much power, so much money, so much gold & so many followers. In material life the more you have the more you become intoxicated with a fever that I am the Lord.


Unconquerable prowess of Demon Ravana:

The nature of material life is to have false pride & the desire to exploit the resources of material nature. And the more you have not that you become more satisfied, the more you become completely infatuated and intoxicated by that. Ravana had a beautiful wife Mandodari & so many other queens and so much incredible wealth. And so much power & so much prestige why wasn’t he just content to live & enjoy? Because that’s not possible. The more you have the more you want. The more you feed your lusty desires the more the fire blazes. As soon as he saw that that there was somebody better he had to have that. He could not enjoy or be peaceful or satisfied with all of the conquered wealth that he had because there was something else that he didn’t have. Don’t think that Ravana was somebody who simply lived so many millions of years ago Ravana is living in your heart & my heart today! We all have that tendency. We want to be the enjoyer. We want to take the property of God for ourselves. And you are envious that somebody else has something better than us. This mentality is demoniac. A devotee is humble .He simply wants to be enjoyed. And in the end what happens to all of the Ravanas through out the world. Krishna says in the Gita that “I am death personified.” In the form of death He slays everyone. Today or tomorrow. And at the time of death, what does He do? He takes Sita back. He takes her away from you. And what is the reaction? That we have to pay the consequences in another birth, God knows where! But if for you who have tried in spiritual path to control your senses, to give up these greedy selfish propensities you know it’s very difficult. It is difficult as fighting against Ravana. Do you know how much trouble even Hanuman, Sugriva, Angada do you know how much trouble they had fighting against Ravana? They could not defeat him. Now what if that same Ravana would come into this room before you right now with ten heads & twenty arms came into this room & looked right at you in your eyes & said “I am going to conquer you.” He is a Rakshasha; he is nourished by drinking human blood. He was given benediction by Lord Brahma & Shiva that made him invincible. What would you do? Ok I am ready for the fight. You would just go like this Shhh even if he just blows on you; you would fall to the ground dead. Ah? What do we have, what hope do we have against such a powerful demon as Ravana? And that was Ravana is simply an insignificant manifestation of the potency of lust and greed. But lust & greed in its full manifestation is right in our heart. More powerful than Ravana. What hope do we have to control our senses and become saintly devotees? Which means to conquer the Ravana within? What hope do you have? What is the answer to that?   We have no hope. Ravana was so powerful, even Indra who has a thunderbolt that could crack & split mountains into two, he was scared to death of Ravana.


Take Shelter of Lord following the demigods

Vayu, Varuna these great demigods millions of times greater & more powerful than us, they were scared of Ravana. They could not defeat him. They had to go to the ocean of milk & pray to the Supreme Lord “Please come, you are the only one who can do it. He is causing too much trouble.” So similarly we have to follow in their footsteps. We have to throw up our hands and say we cannot do this. My dear Lord Ram, You are the only one who can save us. You come into my heart & kill this demon. Just like the demigods & the devotees they asked the Lord You come into this planet & kill the demon Ravana. My dear Lord please come into the abode of my heart, incarnate here right in my heart & kills this demon Ravana because I cannot do it I tried. And if you think you are doing it that means you are completely a slave of this pride that is coming through Ravana. And Ram is so kind that He is willing to incarnate in everyone’s heart & slay this demon. If we simply with a humble & sincere heart ask Him to do so. He is incarnating within the sound of His Name.


Name of Krishna is Non-different than Personality Krishna…

Name Chintamani Krishna Chaitanyasya Rasavigraha.

There is no difference between  the sound of the Name of  Ram & Ram Himself. When we are call out in the state of true sincere helplessness the Name of God it is Gods guarantee that He will manifest Himself within our mind. But if we chant only with our tongue, He will manifest on our tongue. But when we really attentively try to hear the Name & chant the Name & chant the Name  from our heart if we truly chant the Name of the Lord from our heart then and then Lord alone Lord may appear within our heart. And when He appears ah, when you chant the Name Ram , He appears with His bow  & arrow , When you chant the Name Krishna , He is armed with His Sudarshan Cakra. When you chant the Name Narsimha Deva He is armed with His invincible nails. There is no difference between the Lord & His Name. He is come to kill the Kamsas & the Hiranyakashipus & the Ravanas  within us. They are all there , not just one of them  they are all there. There’s a whole society of demons within our hearts. We are not talking about crazy people who talk about demons all the time, insane. We are talking about the demon of these qualities which are empowered by Maya to invoke within us spirit of exploiting Gods property for our own greedy purposes. So therefore the real truth that the Lord has revealed to us through this beautiful pastime is how you & I can purify, protect & how invocable unconditional love can manifest within our heart.


Chanting of the Holly name.. Only shelter

There is only one way Ceto darpana marjanam bhava maha davagni nirvapanam . We must cleanse our hearts of all of these unwanted qualities to lord it over material nature. By humbling ourselves before the Lord & allowing Him to coming to the heart through His incarnation the Holy Names Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Ram Hare Ram Ram Ram Hare Hare. We should not make friends with Ravana. Because you cannot trust someone who cannot control their senses. We have been making friends with Ravana in our heart all our life. But in the end, he always cheats us. We should not be comfortable & make friends with these greedy desires to exploit the resources of Gods creation. We should humbly call upon the Holy Name of God to remove these obstacles from our life and allow our natural loving propensities toward Krishna toward Ram to make our life beautiful. And to make the lives of all around us or those who are near & dear to us all creatures come in contact with. To help make their hearts   beautiful.


Question and Answers:

Are there any questions?

Question : You said that Krishna knows the past, present & future on the other hand you say that it is our desires which

Answer : That is why Krishna‘s so great. Because He can do what you cannot do. (Maharaj laughing) You know something. You only know some thing that has some sort of a systematic understanding comprehensible to you. But Krishna’s not like that. Krishna knows what you do but at the same time He doesn’t interfere with what you do. He gives you independence and He knows how you are going to use your independence. But His knowing does not interfere with your independence. You understand? His knowing not in any way shape or form interferes with your freedom. He gives you the choice to come back to Him whenever you want. You can decide today, you can decide in a thousand years. But Krishna knows when you are going to decide. You don’t know, we don’t know. And He is not in any way influencing. But He knows. It’s inconceivable. I think it’s inconceivable because you cannot do it.  Anything that you cannot do is inconceivable, right? Therefore the first principle in understanding God is that Achintya Shakti, He is inconceivable. Because He is better than us, your brain is this big right? Your brain is about this big. That’s the capacity of what you can store. You can store this much knowledge here in these little brain cells. You mean Krishna’s limited to a brain this big? Krishna doesn’t even need a brain. (Maharaj laughing) He doesn’t have a brain like us. That itself is inconceivable. He knows everything without a brain. Try to explain that in your medical seminars. That is the difference. Krishna can hear through His Feet, He can hear through His Eyes, He can taste through His Eyes, can you do that? Inconceivable. That’s why we love Krishna because He is like this.  If anyone else were like that we would love them. But factually if we love Krishna automatically we love every part of Him and we are all parts of Him. If everyone was part of you, I love you then I could love everyone. If everyone is part of me, you could repose all your love in me. That would just create universal love. But that’s not true. We are all just little particles. That is why we want to love Krishna. Because He is great. Not great like Napolean or great like Alexander the Great. He isn’t great like Krishna; they are all dead & gone. All that is left of them is rumors, terrible rumors. Does that answer your question?


Question : Krishna created the planets; there are 9 planets in the solar system. All of them are revolving around the sun. What is the purpose?

Answer : Because Krishna has many purposes, whatever Krishna does has infinite purposes. But one is to show that He can do what you cannot do. (Maharaj laughing) So that you are surrendered to Him. He could have created it in another way, if He wanted to. That’s the way He likes it. These few planets facilitate different forms of enjoyment & suffering. So according to our karma, we go to these planets in different atmospheres. And why exactly He does what He does, how exactly He does what He does that is a wonderful topic to discuss. But right now I am supposed to go, supposed to dress Krishna. Can you understand that? (Maharaj laughing) That in itself is inconceivable. That I am going to give Krishna a bath & dress Him. Me? Ah? The Lord of the universe, controller of all controllers, He is bigger than the biggest, smaller than the smallest. He’s everywhere, He’s all knowing and He’s waiting for me to give Him a bath? Ah? So I don’t think I should keep Him waiting any longer.

Anyways thank you all for coming today.

Written by

Radhanath Swami

H.H Radhanath Swami is one of today’s most beloved and respected spiritual teachers. A Bhakti Yoga practitioner for 40 years, he is a guide, community builder, philanthropist, and acclaimed author.Born and raised in Chicago,at the age of 19 he discovered India's Mystical devotional tradition and now spread his message of compassion and love around the world.

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About Me

Radhanath Swami

H.H Radhanath Swami is one of today’s most beloved and respected spiritual teachers. A Bhakti Yoga practitioner for 40 years, he is a guide, community builder, philanthropist, and acclaimed author.Born and raised in Chicago,at the age of 19 he discovered India's Mystical devotional tradition and now spread his message of compassion and love around the world.