Dayananda, August 10, 1976, Tehran: They think that the countries that have the materialistic advancement or scientific advancements, that they are very well situated.
Prabhupada: Well, scientific advancement, all this nonsense you can say. Just like Iran. God has given the oil underneath the ground, you are so proud. But if God would not give you the oil, then you starve in the desert. Then talk of improvement, nonsense. You’re dependent on the oil. That is given by God. By God’s grace, you have got some stock of oil, and there is good demand of oil. Then you are proud of making advancement. You are depending on the oil. The oil is supplied by God. You’re dependent. Where is your independence? When the oil is finished, then your all pride is finished. Where is your independence?
Dayananda: But we do not believe in God and still…
Prabhupada: Do or do not believe in God, but you are not independent, that’s a fact. You don’t believe or do believe, it doesn’t matter. But you are dependent. You are not independent.
Atreya Rsi: Yes, we are dependent on nature.
Prabhupada: That’s all right, but you cannot say that you are independent. That is the point that we are discussing. You call nature, I call God, it doesn’t make any difference. But you are dependent on something else. You can call it nature, but nature is also God’s nature. Anyway, accept nature. So,
prakrteh kriyamanani gunaih karmani sarvasah ahankara-vimudhatma kartaham iti manyate [Bg. 3.27]
So take it, nature, nature is acting in her own way. So nature is not your father’s servant. So how do you declare independent, that I am everything? Even if you accept nature, you are not independent. That’s a fact.
Atreya Rsi: But I am not independent, I am more dependent on my intelligence.
Prabhupada: What intelligence? If dependent, what is the meaning of intelligence?
Dayananda: Yes, I’m depending on my own intelligence to utilize everything for advancement, for my comfort and my strength and food.
Prabhupada: Yes, everything, if there is no everything, then what is the meaning of intelligence?
Dayananda: But I may develop more intelligence to create what I lack.
Prabhupada: That is theory. That is not fact. [break] That is given by nature or God, whatever you say. That is not in your intelligence.
Hari-sauri: God may have given us all the basic things, but it’s taken man’s intelligence to make the…
Prabhupada: That is all right, but if God has given you so many basic things, then you can use your intelligence. Otherwise, your intelligence… There is a story that one man was asked by his friend, “Have you got intelligence?” He began to search out here. So, “What is this?” He said, “Intelligence means when there is money here. Otherwise, I am even though I have got intelligence, useless.” You can utilize your intelligence provided you have got the means. Intelligence also you cannot utilize properly if there is no supply.
Hari-sauri: Actually, Svarupa Damodara pointed out when we were in Washington that most of these big, big men, they admit that they don’t know where their inspiration comes from; it just comes. Just like that Mozart or one of those composers. He just used to write the music, but he had no idea where it was coming from. He did not think it out.
Prabhupada: And that is answered in the Bhagavad-gita: mattah, mattah smrtir jnanam apohanam ca [Bg. 15.15] So intelligence comes from God. Mattah smrtir jnanam apohanam ca.