How KC is the solution to all problems 2 – Cultural Problems – Sexual Assaults
Transcription : Anurag Gupta Prabhu
Today I in the context of what is in the news, I will discuss a later part about cultural and sexual problems. Most of you will be aware how, there is a very ghastly gang rape at Delhi. And that has been dominating the news and practically nation is burning because of that. So thirteen days that stopped the nation. The victim died today in Singapore.
So I will be discussing this in three parts. First we will look at the contemporary analysis. What the media think is the problem and what is the solution? Then we look at the Vedic insight, Vedic prospective of what the problem is. And then we will look at how the Vedic solution can be implemented in today’s society by us individually as well as communally as well as culturally.
So the main focus of the huge protest that happened in Delhi where the capital was practically shut down was the demand for greater protection. And that is a naturally valid demand. We discussed earlier about how in the Vedic culture also the security of the citizens is provided for by the government, primarily by the king. And it is said that in law justice should not only be done but justice to be seen to be done.That means if a criminal is punished, not only should the criminal be punished but people should see that the criminal is punished. Then that acts as a deterrent for others.
So now with respect to rape we may wonder how exactly it is immediately relevant to us. Actually now most countries have practically changed the definition of rape. Traditionally the idea of definition of rape was just a male violating a female. But now with homosexuality spreading all over the world so much,there are male-male rapes,there are female-female rapes,and there are male-child rapes,female-child rapes. All kinds of, especially in prisons where males and females live together,this is one of the most common and most under reported crimes. So it is something which is pervading our society.
And rape is just one of the problems. We will discuss from the media point of view the main issue is that there has to be greater security. And surely security has to be there. No doubt. But apart from the security the extent of the problem is much-much larger. In the history of the world till now never has any society or culture being as rabidly sexualized as is our modern culture. Rabidly means like a rabid, when a dog has a disease,the dog often get a disease called rabies,so rabid means diseased in a very maddening way. So our culture is rabidly sexualized.
The idea is that sports players earn a lot of money in India also and everywhere. These are statistics from America primarily. In America the three most populargamesare these three- baseball, basket ball and football. But all the three revenues combined together the porn industry revenue is the greatest. So now actually what is the very word, pornography means, “porna” means prostitute, “graphy” means drawing-so depiction of prostitution or prostitutes. So pornography industry is defined as the industry which is meant to arouse people sexually. In U.S.A in 1980’s there was a court case ina particular movie that the censor board had judged was not pornographic. Then the public said it is pornographic. And they were trying to have technical details, technical discussions about how to classify pornography. So the U.S high court judge, he said you cannot define pornography but when you see it you know it is pornography. What is the meaning of that? Actually the important point is not how the person is posing or how much of the body is revealed or exposed. Thethrust is on the purpose, the intention. And that can be subjectively sensed.
Why do criticize western dresses?
I was giving a class in Mangalore. There was a youth club, sort of get together where people from all over the, many students from different colleges and different religions they had come. So there was the debate. One of the students in debate made the point, why do we criticize bollywood? Why do we criticize Western dresses? The idea was that in Western dress female legs are exposed. But in the Indian culture women wear saree their mid-ribs are exposed. So what is the difference? So I answered that question, first of all we shouldn’t think that the style of dressing saree that we see in bollywood is the actual way of dressing a saree. The bollywood sexualizes everything. So actually saree is a dress of chastity. But in bollywood even saree is sexualized. That’s not the way to dress. The important point is that much of the Western dress is in such a way that the contours of the body are highlighted and aggravated for stimulating people’s eyes and minds. Whereas within the Vedic culture the purpose is exactly the opposite. Specially, Srila Prabhupada trained his devotees in the west, he told even the mataji devotees is that even the mid-ribs should not be exposed too much.
Now the idea of wearing a saree is to expose as much as possible. So that is not a standard way of wearing a saree. The point of which I am making here is the pornography may be a very explicit exposure. But anything that tends towards that is actually in the direction of pornography. Now the economic industry knows very well. The commercial industry knows very well. There is no marketing agent who can match sex. That means nothing attracts people attention and agitates people mind as well as sex. Therefore any product and every product that is to be marketedis marketed using sex. So pornography is the industry where sex itself is marketed. Remaining commercial industry is where sex is used to market everything else. But the point is that practically in the culture that is sweeping across India now, it is already there in the west, it is that sex is thrust upon us from all sides. Practically whichever direction we look there are sexuallyprovocative images that are coming in.
In America one rape is happening every minute
So now we are talking so badly about this one particular rape, it was ghastly but one rape is happening in America every minute. Can you imagine how bad it is? Now off course this is also, all this is we are talking about reported rapes. Rapes are often one of the most under reported crimes because of the stigma associated and everything. So one out of six of all children, boys as well as girls, have been victims of incest. Incest is actually sexual assault by the parents. Or some relative of parent generation on the children. This is terrible. Now I have talked with people, now some of them become devotees. Most of them from Western countries. ____ child was sexually abused it’s one of the most traumatic experiences that a person can ever have. And we shouldn’t think that this thing is happening in America. In the news, you see there are much terrible news, there is a news of say just a few days ago, one devotee forward the news, that in Times of India, there is a news of a father having incest with his daughter in the presence of his son. Such perversity!
So one sixth of American women has been the victim of attempted of completed rape. And ten percent of sexual assault victims are men. Half of them still are left unreported. Certainly the rape in India that came to the news is very ghastly but that is just a very intolerably stinking symptom of a disease that is pervading the global culture. What is the cause of this? Now off course another aspect of this is more children are conceived outside of marriage than within marriage. Now what is the result of this? So actually this is very traumatic especially for the children to not have parents, both parents together.
From the Vedic prospective Krishna describes in the Bhagvad Gita that, third chapter verses 36-43, it is the analysis of lust. Its starts with Krishna being asked by Arjuna
atha kena prayukto ’yaṁ
pāpaṁ carati pūruṣaḥ
anicchann api vārṣṇeya
balād iva niyojitaḥ
so Arjuna asked Krishna.By what is one impel to sin? As if by force even against one’s will. Anicchannapi vārṣṇeyabalād iva niyojitaḥ, by force.Krishna replies in 3.37
kāma eṣa krodha eṣa
viddhy enam iha vairiṇam
kamesha krodhesha– it is lust only. And it is lust later on becomes anger. Prabhupada translates in wrath. Wrath means uncontrolled anger. So when lust is agitated and when lust is not get satisfied or when the satisfaction of the lust is obstructed then a person just grows mad completely. This rape incident, one of the rapist said that when this women she tried to defend herself by biting him and when she bit him he went mad and then he just bet her and then they kind of brutality which they wounded her is demoniac. But what happened was the kaam was there and when the kaam was obstructed, mad krodh. So Krishna says this is rajo-guṇa-samudbhavaḥ. It happens because of the mode of passion. And He says mahāśano mahā-pāpmāmaha papma is very great sin. Maha shano, shano means to eat, to consume, to devour. So it is a great devourer. Prabhupada describes it as all devouring. There is nothing that lust leaves in apare. For lust no relationship is sacred. Nothing is sacred. Child relationship is such a selfless and sacred relationship. But for lust nothing remain sacred. Maha shano maha papma and Krishna is telling viddhy, know this, enam iha vairiṇam this is your great enemy.
Ravana represents lust
And in the Ramayana, Ravana represents lust. See the Ramayana and Mahabharata historical incidents that happened long ago. But these historical incidents also represent eternal themes that recur throughout history. So in that sense Ravana represents lust. And Ravana’s lust was so uncontrollable that he practically when see God powers by doing tapasya, by doing austerities towards the demigods then he went all over the universe. And wherever he would find some good looking women he would just abduct them and get them into his harem. And if he couldn’t get any women voluntarily accepting then he would forcibly violate her. And he did this, when he went to the heaven there was Rambha who was his neice. And he violated her also forcibly. Although she was already married and she was his niece so he did something like incest. And eventually we know that he abducted Sita and then Lord Rama gave him capital punishment. So but Ravana lust is well known. But still there is an incident in the Ramayana which is not talked about so much.
Actually the cycle of event that happened is that Shurpanakha had a husband named Dushtabudhi. This Dushtabudhi was quite a powerful rakshas. So this Dushtabudhi he had a quite evil mentality but he was also very powerful. And Ravana himself arranged for the marriage of Shurpanakha with Dushtabhdhi. He consented to marriage. But eventually when Dushtabudhi became very powerful, Ravana started feeling that Dushtabudhi is like a threat to me. So Ravana arranged to have Dushtabudhi killed. And he made it appear as it was a death in the battle. But one demon can understand other demon’s mind so Shurpanakha understand what has happened. And from that time onwards Shurpanakha was searching for some means to take revenge against Ravana. So she didn’t like to stay in Lanka. Although Lanka was her brother’s palace. It was her palace, her parents were there only. But she didn’t like to stay there. She would stay in the south India in the Dandakaranyaforest. And then when she heard about Rama, how Suhabu and Tataka had been killed just by one arrow of Rama, she thought yes. Rama is the means by which I can cause the destruction of Ravana and take revenge for the death of my husband for his having made me into widow. So then she was attracted to Rama, no doubt initially. But along with that attraction to Rama she also had her agenda to incite a battle between Rama and Ravana. But she first try to offer herself to Rama. She tried to seduce him. When Rama said I am actually already married to Sita. And why do you have to become a maid servant of Sita. You will have to become a junior queen, junior wife. So why don’t you marry Laxman. So now if Shurpanakha is really been attracted to Rama, if a girl is really attracted to boy then the boy says why don’t you to him and she immediately goes away.Is that really love? She immediately went to Laxman. There Laxman said I am a servant of Rama. So you will have to become, if you become my wife you’ll have to assist me in His service. You will not get any satisfaction. Better you go and married Rama only. And she went back and she realized that both the brothers were smiling. They try to joke with her. They try to make fun of her. She thought that real cause of problem is Sita. She tried to attack Sita only. And Rama said, oh Laxman stop her. It is wisely said that you should not joke with rakshasas. Then Laxman cut-off her nose. Then she really got humiliated by that. And she went and told her brother Khar. And Khar send first seven rakshas were killed immediately. And Khar, Dushan, Trishira along with fourteen thousand rakshas came there. They were all killed. Only one rakshas was left. His name was Akampan. Akampan ran across all the way to Lanka. And when he came into Ravana’scourt, his name was Akampan but he is doing kampan. He was trembling, trembling, trembling. And then he told everything that has happened. Ravana was furious, he said, I will go at this very moment. I will destroy Rama and take revenge. Akampan said don’t do that. Rama’s arrows are so powerful that you cannot match. Just forget it. Ravana started thinking about it. Then he thought I will go to Maricha. Maricha was a magician. I’ll take his assistance then I’ll take revenge. When he went to Maricha, Maricha also told him. Maricha was already been hit by Rama’s arrows twice. So twice he was thrown array far-far by his arrows. So some people say that Maricha was thrown to Mauritius that’s why the name Mauritius was come. Maricha-Mauritius. But the point is that he told him which enemy of your’s has given you the advice to cross swords with Rama. You are living happily in Lanka, continue over there. Just forget Rama. So then when Maricha spoke like this against seconding the advice that, Akampan had given, then Ravana gave up his evil desires. And he came back. And when he came back he was sitting in his court at that time Shurpanakha reached. Now Akampan was so frightened, Akampan just ran and came back. Shurpanakha was so angry, she didn’t know what to do. But then she gradually came back. Shurpanakha came back and she fell at his feet in the court and then she got up and saw her cut nose. She started castigating Ravana. She said what kind of king are you? King is meant to protect the citizens. And I am not just the citizen. I am your sister. And just see what has happened to me. It is not my nose that have been cut, it is your nose that have been cut. Tell me who is in this? I will immediately kill Him. He said it is the prince named Rama. As soon as Ravana heard the name Rama he became quiet. He thought not worth it. Then when Shurpanakha saw that Ravana’s anger suddenly subsided then she realized that if I have to make him fight then I have to use some other strategy. So she knew that whatever love Ravana has for me. You know his love for lust is much greater. So for my sake he may not be ready to fight with Rama but for the sake of lust he will surely fight. So then she started describing Sita. And as she started describing Sita, Ravana got more and more allured. By the end of it he just buddhi nashaat pranashyati. His intelligence was completely destroyed. And he said, I am going to do whatever it takes. Again he went to Maricha. Maricha, just now I have convinced you what happened. Please don’t fight with Rama. He say I am not come to take your suggestion. I am come to give you instruction. Obey otherwise I will kill you right now. So then he went and made the whole vicious plot to abduct Sita.
The point here is that Shurpanakha had her own agenda. And although Ravana was powerful and Ravana was also lusty but even Ravana wasrestrained to some extent when he understood the power of Rama. But once his lust was specifically triggered by Shurpanakha then even Ravana couldn’t control himself. Ravana lost his sense and then he lost his life eventually.
The whole modern culture and media is like the modern Shurpanakha. Those who make the movies, those who make the pornography industry, those who make all the bill boards which are sexually explicit bill boards, commercials they don’t have anyone’s good interest at mind. Just like the Shurpanakha did not have the good interest of Ravana at mind. They don’t have anybody’s good interest. They have their own pockets and bank accounts to fill. That’s all. And for their agendas they just exploit people’s sexuality. Actually speaking this modern Shurpanakha is not just one person, it is nexus that is everywhere. And all of us are the targets of it.
Lust within moral limits and out of moral limits
So what Bhagvad Gita helps to understand is that actually lust, when it is within moral limits and when it goes out of moral limits. Lust within moral limits means when it is within the precincts of dharma, within marriage. So that is within moral limits. But actually once it is released from that then it just slides down, it’s slippery slope, slippery slope. If I stars going down the slippery slopeand I start sliding I cannot say I’ll slide one feet down but I won’t slid at the bottom of the valley. Oncepeople start sliding then there is no limit to how far they will slide. So like that once lust is triggered beyond the limits of dharma then how much lust will drag people down there is no limit to that. So today the Western cultural ideal is liberalization. Liberalization means that this third world countries like India and other countries they are so sexually repressed. Boys and girls are not allowed to mix. And it’s also primitive. And the idea is that we should have liberalization, we would have freedom. But what is this liberalization? Actually in the name of liberalization people are just being drag down, they are just been invited, allured down to slippery slope. And once people start going down this slippery slope there is no limit how much they will go. Slide, slide, slide, slide. It is not that the force that is, certainly the people who have done this crime of raping someone they are terrible criminals. They need to be punished. But you also need to understand that the same force which made them do those things is not different. It is the same as the force that is being displayed on the bill boards. That is being glamorized to the Bollywood and Hollywood movies. That which is being triggered through the porn industry. It’s all the same force. It is just that force is acting on people at stronger and stronger levels. People go and watch a movie and in that movie when their hero and heroine embrace and kiss, the people whistle. Now why do people whistle? Because actually they are having second hand enjoyment. What is second hand enjoyment? They are imagining, I will do, it will be so nice. So basically whatever is being depicted they may not be doing it physically over there. But they are seeing it visually and they are certainly desiring to do that. Now generally speaking in movies what is depicted is romance. And today’s idea is that traditionally the male female relationship was based on covenant. Covenant means marriage-the sacred arrangement. Today people feel there is no need for any sacred arrangement, no need for covenant. All that is needed is consent. Consent means boy agrees, girl agrees and then whatever they do what is the problem. But actually speaking once we go out of the limits of dharma there is no restriction left. So generally the movies what they depict is based on consent. But what happens is, once that force is triggered, once lust is triggered it doesn’t stay in control. So there is covenant. Covenant means sacred arrangement. Consent is just mutual agreement. And third is coercion. Coercion means force. So actually it’s a same slope. Once we leave the covenant, once we leave the dharmic limit of sexuality then things just drag down. So today consent is considered themodel. So whether the man and woman are married or if they are enjoying sexually if both of them are enjoying it then people think nothing is wrong in it. But one of them is forced then they think it’s a big wrong in it. But actually it’s the same force that is being stimulated. So recognizing this is very important to understand that, yes this may be very ghastly and this what we see in the movies people think that is very enjoyable. But actually this ina sense gradually going to lead to this. This is one of the causes of that.
Porn desires in the heart
So ultimately when the desires are there in the heart, once the desires are stimulated they have to be expressed somewhere. So today for most people amount of sexual content that is being put into their minds, for example this pornography is become a such a thing today that there are experts who specialize in freeing people from pornography addiction. And according to survey especially in cities where internet is very common, now earlier pornography, to get pornography required time, money and effort. To go and purchase a magazine or go some show where some videos are available or something like that. But today with internet, available everywhere,today people need time, money and energy to avoid pornography. If we have computer then we have to install some parental control, have somethings by which access is limited. And still people find their way out. So pornography addiction is such a severe menace because all other forms of addiction, generally what happens is we have to go out of the way to get it. But this is one addiction we just specially, when a modernized community is there we just come into, it addicts people terribly. So there are professionals whose job is getting people out of pornography addiction. And there are millions-millions,today pornography is considered to be a fastest growing addiction in the world. What happens because of this addiction is, many people may eventually get into violence. Now what the media says is, actually this is not going to cause any violence. This is just depicted in the movie. But if it is true that what is depicted on the movie or in the celluloid or in the internet or whatever that is not going to make people do things. If it were true that people don’t do what they see. This is the main argument because pornography involves lot of violence manytimes and lot of nasty things. When people see such things, the ideas get into their mind and they are going to act on it. The whole pornography industry is, rationalization is that, actually this is just for seeing. It is not that, and they have got lot of surveys which seem to say that ok even if you see this, people when they see this they don’t do it like that. Although there is lot of evidence people do like that but the real clinching argument is if people don’t do what they see then why do companies all over the world spend so much money on commercials, on advertisements. Ten second, thirty second, thirty second advertisement sometimeson prime time on television cost crores. The company is convinced that even a thirty second exposure to our advertisement, even if its cost is crores, it is going to meet many crores for us. So if a thirty second exposure can affect people behaviors so much then people get exposed to this sexual agitating stimuli for hours and hours. How can that not affect people? It is a absurd argument to say that it cannot affect. It is going to affect and it is affecting. So it is affecting people everywhere. So certainly this is a very ghastly thing what has happened. But it is just as I said, it is a stinking symptom of a disease that is there everywhere. And the same force that made these people do that terrible, that brutal act, that same force is there in our hearts also. And it can also impel us to do wrong things. Certainly it is not that, generally all of us have our moral limits. I’ll do this but I will not go beyond this. But then every time we violate a moral limit what happens is,we are going down the slippery slope. And then we keep sliding down, sliding down, sliding down and sliding down. And then, at the end how did I do that, how could I have done that? That’s how it happens. So therefore it is very easy to say OK these people are the criminals. They should be hanged. Some people are saying that some news paper, they write that anybody who is a rapist what should you. You should castrate them. Just remove their sexual organs so that they cannot harass anyone. But this is a very superficial solution. In IIT, in IIT Mumbai there were a series of suicides. Many students commit to suicides. IIT management came together and they said what should we do? IITiansare supposed to be brilliant students. So many of them committing suicides. Then they said, they observed that the suicide have a common pattern. And the students would hang themselves on the fan. And then turn on the fan. So the management decided let us remove all fans from the room and replace them with ACs. So removing the fan is a very superficial solution. Similarly, certainly strong punishments are required, no doubt. But strong punishments are not the solution. Ravana knew very well that in his boon he is not protected from humans. And when Hanuman attacked Lanka and he is burning Lanka, Hanuman just burned all of Lanka and Ravana seeing his whole Lanka burning and just to aggravate Ravana’s anger Hunuman just came right over Ravana only. He said Ravana I have burned your Lanka and I am the weakest of all the monkeys that are going to come. And then he said, and remember one more thing your boon from Brahma doesn’t grant you immunity from monkeys also. So the point Iam making is Ravana knew there is danger from him. But that awareness of danger did not stop him because he was incited. He was agitated. So actually speaking we have to work to counter the incitation and agitation that is there in our culture. We can’t do the, we may feel what can we do when this whole media is bombarding sexual agitating stimuli. Actually everytime we delight in such stimuli. Whether it’s music or whether it’s song, whether it’s dance or whether it’s pictures or whether it’s novels or its sights. Everytime we delight in it, basically what we are doing? We are paying. We may not be paying money directly but we are apart of that. And to the extent we disconnect ourselves from it, not only do we protect ourselves but we also stop the fuel for this whole industry. Fuel for the whole industry is the money that is being raked from it. So at the very least we need to recognize this rabid sexualization of our culture that has happened. And that is causing a variety of problems. And those problems are for all of us. It is not, some people may be very severe victims of that. Some people may be lesser victims of that. But everybody is a victim. So the original AIDS is acquired intelligence deficiency syndrome. What is this intelligence deficiency? The intelligence deficiency is the inability to understand that lust leads not to happiness but to misery. So actually the more lust gets agitated the more it torments. The more it torments us. And it’s like a jab that is there inside. Do it, do it, do it. It’s piercing us from within. So there might be a little pleasure that comes. But if you compare the amount of torment that comes with the pleasure that comes,the pleasure is for the few minutes,the torment goes on for days and months and years. So actually lust leads far more to misery than to pleasure. And this inability is acquired. How is it acquired? Through the media, through the culture. It is acquired through the modern Shurpanakha. So it’s association with that current culture. That’s why as devotees it is very important for us to have a devotional subculture. That’s why many of you are from the youth center, BACE or some type of youth center. There we all protect and encourage each other. Otherwise if we stay in the current culture directly exposing ourselves then we are constantly getting bombarded by stimuli which are meant to agitate us and it’s very difficult to protect ourselves. So off course it is not impossible. And all of us we don’t have to just withdraw from the culture which is there. But we have to understand that we have a particular purpose.
why did God create sex?
Now we have our material responsibilities. We have our spiritual aspirations. And if we have to fulfill them then we need to keep ourselves focused. So Krishna consciousness enables us to experience a higher happiness. In all the religions of the world it is understood that sex is a very strong force that can distract people from the spiritual path. But what is the original _____ of sex. That is not answered in any religion. In Christianity, in Islam, any of these religions, why did God create sex? Wheredid sex come from? It takes us away from God. It takes us away from Godliness. And it takes us away by promising such a intoxicating pleasure, where did this come from? It is not explained in any of the world scriptures. That is answered only in the Vedic scriptures. And what is that answer? The answer is two-fold. First is that if we a have a white tube light. Cover the white tube light with red film then what happens? The light that comes out of it is red. Similarly the soul is originally pure. Desire is an essential characteristic of consciousness. So the soul naturally has desires. Nobody can give up desires. When somebody is told that just curb your desires, crush your desires, that is impossible. So desires are natural. For the soul when its originally pure then desires are white,the desires are pure. The desires of the pure soul are to love and serve Krishna and to love and serve everyone in relationship with Krishna. But when the soul becomes covered by the body and the mind that is like the white tube light being covered by a red film. So that pure desire becomes distorted. It becomes perverted. And the primary perversion of that desire is lust. So lust is a perversion of our original love for Krishna. Our original love for Krishna is called as Adi rasa, it is calledprema. And lust is called as kaama.
The force of desire cannot be suppressed. But it can be redirected. And if it is not redirected, if only repression is attempted then that is very torturous. You just to give no, no, no. I will not do that. I will not do that. I will not do that. That is torturous. Howlong can we keep saying no? But actually when we have something more positive to do that not something positive to do, something positive that gives us higher happiness then saying no become easier. So at a philosophical level we understand that this desire cannot be repressed. It has to be redirected. And that’s why when we engage in devotional service to Krishna the more we absorb ourselves in our services, chant the holy names, associate with devotee, even our studies can be done as service to Krishna. Krishna has put us in a particular position where we are students and our studies are our svadharma. Svakarmana tam abhyarcha, Krishna describes in Bhagvad Gita that worship Him through your work. It doesn’t say work is worship. He says make your work into a worship. Worship Him through your work. The more we fill ourselves with Krishna-centered activities then to that extent lust becomes minimized. This is a generic understanding. More specific understanding is that actually the male and female are present even in the spiritual world. In all the religions the conception is God is only singular. There is Allah or there is Jehovah, but in Vedic culture God is always as a couple. There is Sita Rama, there is Luxmi Narayan, there is Radha Krishna. So what is the understanding? Actually the Radha Krishna relationship is not like a male female relationship. They are transcendental. But the important point is that there is in the spiritual realm a transcendental attraction between the male and the female. And the male female attraction in this world is a reflection of that. However in the reflection there is no substance. Just like if there is a mango on a tree and the mango is reflected in a river. So if a person jumps into the river to catch the mango, what will happen? He will search, search, search and will never get it. But if the same person can climbs up the tree then he can get the mango. So this world is like a reflection of the spiritual world. So in the male female attraction of this world, actually that is like the reflected mango. It’s look very attractive. But when a person tries to get into that enjoyment it’s not fully satisfying. So instead if one climbs up the tree that means one rises spiritually and develops one relationship with Krishna then one gets their real mango. And gets the real happiness. This doesn’t mean that we have to give sex entirely. There is brahmachari ashram. There is grahastha ashram. Both ashrams are meant to people to move towards Krishna. Both ashrams, actually it is that lust, both are basically basis of regulating lust and purifying oneself. So the important point is to recognize that lust in itself cannot only give us happiness but also taken away from happiness. Why? Because it takes us away from Krishna.To the extent we are attracted to the reflected mango and chasing after the reflected mango we cannot rise to the real mango. Similarly to the extent we are attracted, we are caught by the force of male-female attraction in this world. And to that extent we cannot be very deeply be attracted to Krishna. That attraction stays superficial. So when we understand this philosophical perspective that this force of sex is a distortion. Or something that is original and pure. So rather than settling for the, rather than getting attracted to the distortion, we can get attracted to the original.
Story in Russia tells us that holy names are powerful.
And although becoming free from sex or getting sex, lust under control may seem difficult but by the process of bhakti it is possible. And the process of bhakti is actually so powerful that it can give us a far higher happiness. I’ll conclude with one real life story from Russia. In Russia a famous river is Volga. Russia people say famous for Volga and vodka. Vodka is a Russian wine. So people go on the bank of Volga and drink vodka. In the banks of Volga there is a annual festival. Annual festival of folk songs. So different traditional groups and regional groups are invited, all of you come and have a performance of your folk songs. There are many devotees in Russia. Infact Russia is a place where Krishna consciousness is spreading very rapidly. The devotees from Russia they also decided to go for the folk song festival and they said we will sing folk song from India. And what was the folk song? Hare Krishna mantra. And they put up their stall. They had one sort of pandal and on top of the pandal they had written Russia Hare Krishna mahamantra. And they started their program. The programwas suppose to start from 7O’clock. So 6: 30 they started the kirten. There plan was up to 7:30 we have the Kirtans. And 7:30 to 8:30 we will have class and 8:30 to 9:00 we’ll have kirtans. And then they will end it. Now when they started the kirtan people just kept coming in, kept coming in. And all the other folk song festivals you just have to watch it. But here you could participate. You could dance, you could sing. Traditional way of doing kirtan is that the kirtan leader sings first and all of people respond afterwards. But these are all new people. They have no idea. So whether the kirtan leader was singing, they were singing constantly. They say ok that is to be sung and they were singing. And then they started kirtan 6:30 by 7:30. Now it’s time for lecture. The singing leader stops singing but people kept singing. The people are so intoxicated, hundreds of hundreds of people were there. So the devotees decided that let us continue. So it became 8:00 O’clock. 8:30 Lecture time got over. 9:00 O’clock, even kirtan time got over. But people just kept singing. The devotees who were leading the kirtan their throat got____. The devotees who were playing mridanga their fingers got sore. People were so happy that the devotees just said, just continue. Became 10:00 O’clock. 11:00 O’clock. 12:00 O’clock. 1:00 O’clock. At 1:30 the amplifier started giving smoke. So they decided to end the kirtan.
The next morning the devotees were doing japa. At that time Jaypataka Swami Maharaja, one of ISKCON senior leader, he was there in this program. So one of the local organizers came there,he says maharaja there is a young couple here. They were here in yesterday’s kirtan. They want to ask you some questions. So maharaja says, just bring them in. The couple did not know English. So this Russian devotee was translating for them. And this young couple was a typical couple. After communism fell, commercialization came into it. So Russia is also become quite materialistic in that way. So there is a typical Russian couple. They were scantily dressed. And this boy spoke. He said we got married recently and we came to this banks of the Volga for our honeymoon. And yesterday night we were in the kirtan. And he said yesterday night was the best night of our honeymoon.
But we have aquestion. Yesterday night we singing this song, we are so happy, we wanted to know what is that song. What is that song. Because there was no lecture and they had no prior association with devotees, they didn’t know what they are singing. They didn’t even know what they are singing. But the holy name is so powerful that it doesn’t require any intellectual, philosophical or even cultural introduction. It acts directly at the spiritual level. At the spiritual level the holy name connects the soul with Krishna. And that happiness which is touted, which is glamorized in the culture constantly just in one encounter, these people who have come just in search of that happiness they feel that this happiness of Krishna consciousness is far higher. So actually the power of the holy name is so great that it can give even new people experience such a high happiness. So what then to speak of those who are diligently chanting the holy names. So we may not feel at the material desires are going away immediately. But if we chant the holy names regularly, the desires will go away. One main reason why the desires don’t go away is that because though we chant the holy names but along with that we also keep stimulating the desires.
Itch is a material agitation
Actually material agitation,Prahalad Maharajacompares to a itch if I got a boil. And if I scratch theitch then what happens? It becomes bigger. And the itch becomes stronger. When I was in Mumbai there couple who had come to meet me. You please tell our child something. What happened? He is scratching his legs so much. He has got itching diseases. All the skin from the leg had come out. Practically everything had become red he is scratching so much. And he said doctors told us that you have to tie his hands and keep away. Our child we don’t want to tie up. Please tell him something by which he will not do this. So then I told him. Have you seen my leg? He said I can’t. Your leg will become like that. The point I am making is that actually when the itch goes out of control then practically people may have to be forced to keep under control. What happens is? Material desire is like itch. Now when the itching sensation comes what a person needs to do? He needs to apply the ointment not scratch the itch. Apply the ointment the itch goes away. But if he scratch it then the itch worsens. So in the case of kanduyanena karyor iva dukha dukham kandu tiva manas ija vishyaeta dhira, kanduyanena, Prahlad maharaja said just like itch. So he says what we have to do is? When the desire start agitating us it’s like the itch is coming. At that time we need to apply the ointment. The ointment is the remembrance of Krishna, chanting of the holy names. By that the itch will subside. It will subside. Not subside immediately but it will subside. However we may chant the holy names but what happens is? We apply the ointment when others are around us and nobody is around us we start scratching the itch. That means what? We may chant but we also cultivate lusty fantasies. And what happens by this is? Although the medicine is being applied because the scratching is also done. So the medicine doesn’t get the facility to act. Actually if we just keep ourselves free from agitation, from stimulation. Artificial stimulation from our side, we find Krishna consciousness so powerful that it’s a big relief to not have this constant agitation, at the back of our mind troubling us constantly.
Lust perverts man into monsters and women into witches
And real freedom, lust perverts man into monsters and women into witches. So man become monsters and what happens to women? Women may be victims but it is not always women are victims. Women can also become seducers. And they can also, just a few days ago in the news, the article about how, there was a man who came, there is a widower and this man had an affair with the widow. And then this widow had a daughter. And then daughter was attractive and this man had an affair with her also. So he would come and had an affair with the mother as well as the daughter. And they didn’t know each other. When both of them came to know each other, next time the man came,they both attacked him and he was hacked to death. His body was cut into seventy two pieces. Both of them hacked him to death. This brutality that happens is not limited to one person. Actually lust acts on men. Lust acts on women. Lust acts on everyone. That’s why it’s a very _____ force. And so real freedom is not freedom for lust but freedom from lust.Actually we can never become free for lust. Even if we had all the freedom, most beautiful person of the opposite sex was there to enjoy, ultimately our enjoyment will be limited by our own body’s capacity. The body’s capacity to enjoy is always limited. In the movies they may show people enjoying for hours and hours together but in real life the body’s capacity ends within minutes. And nobody can extend that. Nobody can do anything to extend that. When people grow old and lose their sexual capacity, many times do some sort of surgery and take like that to try to get back that capacity to enjoy. Srila Prabhupada writes in the Bhagvatam purport that many times people had their monkey gland. Monkey’s have their glands. So the monkey gland had extracted and implanted into human beings. So that human beings can continue enjoy. Srila Prabhupada writes that one monkey loses enjoyment so that another monkey can enjoy. So actually the whole idea of liberalization is a hoax. There can be no liberalization. But at the material level the amount of enjoyment is always limited. This is a pole. By morality, say we are limited to this much enjoyment. By morality means, ok, within marriage one can enjoy this much enjoyment. No marriage, you just have consent. Anybody can enjoy the enjoyment. Still the enjoyment can be extended to this much. Nobody can have unlimited enjoyment. May there little more enjoyment but nobody can have unlimited enjoyment because the body’s capacity to enjoy is forever limited. Nobody can do anything about it. And off course additional enjoyment can bring lot of complications. Aids then another disease can come up. There can be divorces, fights and off course seen this whole class we had not talked anything about karma. Every sexual immorality has severe karmic consequences. But the consequences are often so apparent now that we don’t even have to talk about future karma. We can see the consequences here in now itself. So real freedom, there can never be freedom for lust. We want freedom, freedom is only in one way. That is freedom from lust. And that happens by practicing Krishna consciousness. So Krishna describes in the Bhagvad Gita, let’s conclude with this verse 5.23, He describes:
śaknotīhaiva yaḥ soḍhuṁ
sa yuktaḥ sa sukhī naraḥ
5.23 this is. 5.22 He describes that duḥkha-yonaya eva te, He says that one who seeks sense gratification such a person gets misery. Then Arjuna asked the question. Not direct question in the Bhagvad Gita but acharyas has described that Arjuna has the question that, even if somebody knows that this sort of enjoyment leads to misery but still one doesn’t become free from that enjoyment, desire for that enjoyment. So what should one do. Then in response Krishna speak this verse 5.23, what does he say śaknotīhaiva yaḥ soḍhuṁ, śaknotīhaivaif it is possible for you Arjuna soḍhuṁ, tolerate. prāk śarīra-vimokṣaṇāt, till the moment of death. Vimokshana, what should to do? kāma-krodhodbhavaṁ vegaṁ, the vega that comes from lust and anger, you tolerate it. sa yuktaḥ sa sukhī naraḥ, sayukta, such a person which is well situated and not only well situated, sa sukhī naraḥ, such a person is happy also. Why happy? Because actually speaking the less there is agitation, the more is the satisfaction. Just like if a person has never drunk alcohol. Even if he passes by alcohol bar, there is no agitation in the mind. But imagine somebody has drunk alcohol. Everytime he passes by the alcohol bar what happens? So much agitation. So if we decide, this is not the direction which I am going to do. There is no sexual immoralities that I am going to indulge in. What happens is? Then that source of agitation getsreduced and eventually it gets eliminated. And that’s how sa yuktaḥ sa sukhī naraḥ, such a person becomes peaceful.
So I’llsummarize what I discuss. Then we can have few question answer. I started by talking about this current statistics, how grave the problem is, even from the material prospective. The porn industries getting so much money and some many people are being raped, practically one person being raped every minute. And we discussed some very serious statistics and we discussed the material level the solution that has been talked about is getting better security. But that is not enough. Why it is not enough? Because we discussed the whole story of Ramayana and, although Ravana knew the punishment but still because there was incited by Shurpanakha, he just couldn’t control himself. Today is media, culture, it’s all like the Shurpanakha industry. And then we discussed how this agitation of lust is like a slippery slope. Once we release the force from the limits of dharma, it drag us down to such low level that we can’t even imagine it. Then we discussed this quite elaborately this point and then we discussed about how is this to be controlled. So actually first point is we minimize the agitation. We minimize the our own exposure to agitation. And thenwith philosophical understand that this attraction, this desire is a perversion of our desire, original love for Krishna,we redirect our love towards Krishna. And then we discussed the story of Volga river. How that redirection can free us? This redirection can give us such a high happiness that we forget the lower happiness. And then we discussed about how the idea of enjoyment freely at the material level is a impossibility. Because we’ll always be limited by the body.better rise to the spiritual level and have free enjoyment at that level. Free means at spiritual level we are eternal, Krishna is eternal. Our relationship will be eternal. You can have eternal happiness at the spiritual level. And that is what we can aspire for. Thank you very much.
Q. Everybody is trying to satisfy their sexual organs directly or indirectly. Indirectly means artificially. So this artificial satisfaction comes into sexual violence or not?
Ans. There is not direct violence towards anyone else in that. But essentially generally speaking this sort, any form of artificial satisfaction is accompanied by some imagination. And that imagination is definitely involving some sort of sexual immorality. So in that sense it’s bad. So basically it is something we are doing to agitate our mind. And then once the mind is agitated and the mind will always look for some gratification. And the nature of lust is that once we get at this particular level of lust satisfied. Then the next time lust will want a little more. I want more, I want more, I want more. And it will become worse and worse. That’s why best is to not go on that track.
Q. Does Vedic culture talks about discussing our feeling with others or keeping them within ourselves?
Ans. Well, there are two different issues over here. First is the issue of feelings whether to express or not. And the second is with whom to express. So with respect to male-female interaction Vedic culture is definitely conservative. Why? Because feelings once they get stimulated then they can drag us down on a wrong track. That’s why in our society we cannot, if you are ina college, or if we are in a working place, you cannot avoid the interaction with the opposite sex. But whatever interaction we have with the opposite sex we keep it official not personal. Official means, ok, whatever is the work get it done and get it over with it. But once we get emotionally start dealing with people, once we have emotionally entangled the it’s very easy to get sucked. It’s very easy to get sucked. Many boys think that if they can make a joke which may make a girl laugh that is the success of their lives. So the idea is that once we get emotionally entangled with the members of the opposite sex, after that, physical entanglement follows very quickly. So in that sense, the Vedic scriptures give us example that man is like butter and women is like fire. So they two come together the butter melts. So like that what happens is the mind gets weak and agitated. That’s why definitely with relation to male female relationships it is better to be safe than sorry. As far as expressing our feeling is concerned in general we should have devotee friends. We should express our feelings. That is one of the limbs of bhakti is guhyam akhyati pricchati, that means sharing our heart and hearing others share their heart. Enquiring confidentially from others and hearing confidentially from them. So we should have trusted devotee friends with whom we can share our feelings. And different people will have different natures. Some people are introvert, some people are extrovert. So it is not that everybody has to become a particular stereotype. Everybody has to share their feelings. No, it’s not necessary. Whatever is our nature we can continue with that nature in Krishna consciousness. So some people, with in their devotees circle also some people will have lot of friends and other people may not have so many friends. They will be more reserved. But everybody needs to have some friends atleast with whom we can share. As far as this expression of nature is concerned we can go along with our nature and use it in Krishna’s service. We don’t necessary have to go against our nature. If you are introvert, yes we can do that also. We can have few close friends and with others we have a formal relationship. If you are extrovert we can have nice relationship with many devotees.
Q. How can we protect ourselves with in the externallydegrading culture. Also how can we chant better so that we can elevate ourselves?
Ans. In general, as devotees we shouldn’t always be paranoid. Paranoid means constantly fearful. What will happen, what will happen, what will happen. It’s not like that. Our focus should be service to Krishna. Just like death can come anytime. But that doesn’t mean a devotee is constantly worried. Oh! I am sitting in this room, what if the roof falls and I die now. This is not that a devotee is constantly worried about that. So like that it’s not that we have, our focus should never be the negative. We use the negative as an impetus to focus on the positive. So it’s not that we have to constantly think about death. The thought of death acts as an impetusto focus to think about Krishna. Similarly when we gointo the provocative culture that is there today outside then that is going to agitate us. So that thought should impel us to become more focused in our specific service to Krishna. So that means whenever we go anywhere, we should have our purpose clearly in mind. This is what I need to do. One, two, three, do it and come back. So we don’t have to fool around while doing those activities. Just like when you go to play kabaddi, you don’t sitdown and chat with the people on the opposite side. Just touch and come back. So like that, off course we may not be so brief when we do our material activities. Whatever time is required we can give. But the principle is that we have to be, Krishna said vyavasayatmika bhddhi eke ha kurunandanavyavasayatmika buddhithis is what I have to do, I will do it. One pointed. So that way whenever we are doing our services whatever activities we are doing if we are clear in our purpose. It is not that this is something which is, something extraordinary being demanded. Actually speaking every field if one has to succeed one has to focus, one has to focus. Even if you say if a person wants to do well in sports then a person has to focus on sports. It’s not that a person wants to become a very good cricketer. Today I don’t feel like playing cricket so I’ll play football. Tomorrow I’ll play carom. And third day I’ll will do something else. Still I want to become a cricket champion. So actually subordinating our impulses, our feelings to our goal is required in every field of life. So the same way it is, even if we want to study. If a person wants to achieve in material life, a person cannot waste time in just agitated by material things. So we have to focus.To the extent we focus on our goal,to the extent the distractions fall apart. To the extent we don’t focus on our goal, to the extent distractions become bigger and bigger and bigger. That’s why keeping our goal clearly in mind then distraction can become lesser.
And regarding improving our chanting it is good to contemplate on what inspires us to chant. If we hear some verses, if we read some points and we keep them in small diary or keep them in quick reference somewhere. And whenever we are going to chant just read that or think about that. In general there is the mental level, there is the intellectual level, thereis the spiritual level. We can relish chanting when we are atleast moving towards the spiritual level. But the mind drags us down to the material level. So when we are at the material level chanting is not very relishable. Chanting is like a duty or chanting is like a burden also. But in general what will take us to the spiritual level is the intelligence. evam buddhe param buddhva, in 3.43 Krishna describes in Bhagvad Gita evam buddhewith budhi param buddhwa. Knowing yourself to be transcendental situate yourself on the spiritual platform. So what we need to do is? We need to use our intelligence. So when we are going to chant we use our intelligence to understand how and why this is important. When we understand that then we will feel determined. So in general intelligence is a very-very important thing. Jeev Goswami explains in the Shad sandarbhas that when we have love for Krishna then that love will keep us on the spiritual platform. But till we develop the prema it is our budhi which will keep us on the spiritual platform. That’s why participating in classes like this, studying scriptures, discussing with devotees is what strengthens our buddhi. That will keep us on the spiritual platform.
Ans. Chota Haridas is a ____ story in the Chaitanya Caritamrita where basically devotee was severely punished by Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. I won’t go to the story. But the principle here is that Chaitanya Mahaprabhu often used extreme examples to drive home certain points. It is not that those extreme examples are standard. We also have the other extreme examples of Raghunath Das Goswami eating once and two three days. That is also one standard. We should just lead to learn the principles from there. That is not something which is going to please Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. He going to displease him very much. The focus is not the punishment, the focus is on the principle. Principle is that in general there is religion at the level of fear, desire, duty and love. So we don’t want to practice religion at the level of fear. That is also one impetus. But the primary impetus is love. So it is not that because if we do this we will be punished that’s why we don’t want to do this. No. Because if we do this we will be distracted from our love to Krishna. That’s why we don’t want to do this. The level of motivation trying to practice any rules at the level of fear. Some level of fear is really required but practicing rules at the level of fear cannot be done for a very long time. Youwill also have to rise to the higher level.
Q. How different devtas, different demigod worship, different modes worship. Ultimately it leads to pure devotional service to Krishna. So how is this related to four sampradayas?
Ans. All the four sampradayas have three things in common. Srila Prabhupada explains in one purport. He says that, the understanding that God is a person. The understanding that the soul is a servant of God. And the understanding the relationship between soul and God is eternal. These three things. The supreme position of ishwara, the subordinate position of jiva and the eternality of the process of bhakti. These three are common. And these three are the essence of bhakti. So in that sense all three take us to the top level of this multi level spirituality. All three talk about pure devotional service to supreme lord. Srila Prabhupada would give example these are like four different universities. There are different IIT’s. All of them offer same degree but then the there is some differences in some methods of teaching, some details, something might be different. But overall process of education is the same. So within the Gaudiya Vaishnava Sampradaya can take us to Golok Vrindawan where there is worship of Krishna. Very intimate worship. That is the speciality. So that may not come to happen by through the other sampradayas. But that is not the important point because ultimately everybody is going back to the spiritual world. And there life is eternal. Certainly the intimacy of the relationship of Krishna with the devotees is special, is more intimate. But everybody is getting liberated. Everybody is becoming a pure devotee. So in that sense all sampradayas take us to the highest level.
Q. Younger generation is exposed to the internet. What can we do for them?
Ans. Actually I just have a book with me. The title of the book “Computers are not good for children”. The idea is that, especially when children are growing, there is a multibillion dollar industry in America. It’s coming to India. It’s sort of, they call it edutainment games for small children. Children can learn. Three, four, five, six year old, they can play games and learn. So actually the learning is very little because when people are small the primary learning that they have to do is to learn to live in the world. Do things, walk about, talk with other, work with other, that’s what children need to learn. But when they start seeing this video stimuli then their eyes get adopted to that. And when we have to go to school and sit in front of the class teacher, they just can’t concentrate because they are being exposed. Even learning through the media for children is not advised. What to speak of something which is just games or something which is worse thing like pornography, something like that. So in general as much as our power, we encourage children to do more active form of engagements. So initially the children are becoming addicted to this they may not want to. But over a period of time that’s the natural way children grow. That’s the natural way children have lived for thousands of thousands of years. So it may take little effort to get them off it. But actually once they start experiencing the joy of natural playing and sports and running and having toys of that sort then they get protected. Now as far as the exposure to unwanted content on the internet is concerned there are, it is a major concern. There are systems of parental control by which the parents and elder can check what kind of access the children are having. And they can decide ok. This is a kind of access that they can have, this the kind of access they can’t have. In many countries advertisements directed towards children are banned legally of a children below of a particular age. But through internet anybody can go anywhere. So having a parental control is very important. If children are getting exposed to internet then what they get exposed to is also very critical. So parental control is very effective way to do that.
Q. All the students in the hostel are entangled in the laptop and some things through that so they don’t want to come for our program. How can we get them?
Ans. In general when we go to hostels there are different kinds of people who are there. So some people, Srila Prabhupada use the example that when a red cross doctor goes on a war field where many soldiers have become wounded then doctor knows that it’s not humanly possible that I can treat everyone. Although everybody is wounded and everybody needs treatment. I cannot do that for everyone. What does he do at that time? He focuses on treating those who are least wounded first. Why? Because they become treated then can help in treating others also. So similarly even in the hostel there are boys who are in themode of goodness. There are boys in the mode of passion. There are boys in the mode of ignorance. It’s not that everybody in the hostel is entirely ___ this activities. One of the major reasons why almost gets into it because of peer pressure. Peer pressure means, everybody is doing it and its very strange idea that in hostel that if you don’t do sinful activities, people say that you are a bachcha. You not yet grown up. Growing up means learning to control our impulses. Growing up doesn’t mean giving to our impulses. How is that? Children when they are given some toys and then they feel happy, if the toy is not given then what happen? They start crying. But we don’t expect older people to cry like that. Why? Children are completely governed by their impulses. As we grow older we stop crying. But what happens when children are pampered. Parents think,jo mujhe nahi mila main tum ko dunga. And they just pamper their children. Child say I want this toy, I want this toy, I want this toy. And whatever they want their parents give to the child. And child grows up and he goes to college. And he says to a girl, I want this girl and the girl give him slap. He get so angry that he shoots her or takes acid and throws on her face. Or he takes the gun and shoots himself. One of the very essential aspects of growing up is learning to take no for an answer and learning to say no ourselves to an answer. Because life is going to say no many times. The parents may not say no to our toys. Every desire the mind brings up, can we say yes to that? Life say yes to that, no. So learning to take no and learning to say no ourselves that is an essential aspect of growing up. If we don’t learn this skill, we may be biologically thirty, forty, fifty, sixty years old. But psychologically we are five years old. Just like that. So this is a skill whichpeople don’t learn today. And that’s why people are so short tempered, people are so irritable. See when we can’t take no for an answer the result expresses into two ways. If we are very aggressive then we become angry and violent. And if we are not assertive then we become depressed, we come dejected, we may even become suicidal. These two extremes- one is violence and other is sort of sinking into unsafe,both are because we are not able to take no for an answer. So it is very important to learn, first of all to take no for an answer sometimes and also more importantly is to say to no to ourselves certain times. That is very important part of growing up. So we should focus on those students who are, from the red cross example point of view least wounded. That means they don’t have this inclinations too much. But somehow by peer pressure theyare forced to do that. And you will find those kind of students also. They are there. You have to search enough. And gradually one, two, three, actually speaking over a period of time anybody who gets into pornography sort of activity, people get sick after some time. Because there is nothing there. There are some pixels on the computer screen. How can they give happiness to anyone. One can just churns one’s imagination get a little pleasure. But how long is the pleasure going to last. So after sometime people become sick. Manytimes people become fed up and they just delete everything from the computer. But then what happens? There is nothing, no other pleasure. So again they download the samething again. Why? punah punash charvita charvananam, chewing the chewed again and again. So instead of that we give something better to chew. We give them some higher happiness. Certainly it’s not that we will have many-many students coming but surely there are students who are interested in a better alternative way of living. And Krishna consciousness offers that alternative. Thank you very much. Srila Prabhupada ki jai. Gaura BhaktaVrinda ki jai. Hare Krishna.