video: Srila Prabhupada – Dr Misra’s Ashram, New York State, 1965
Prabhupada, New York, March 4, 1966: [...] Just like at Vrindavana, at Vrindavana… That is practical. Now here I am sitting, New York, a very great, the world’s greatest city, so magnificent city, but my heart is always hankering after that Vrindavana.
Prabhupada: Yes. I am not happy here.
Woman: Yes, I know.
Prabhupada: I shall be very happy to return to my Vrindavana, that sacred place. “But then why you are…?” Now, because it is my duty. I have brought some message for you people. Because I am ordered by superior, my spiritual master, that, “Whatever you have learned, you should go to the Western countries, and you must distribute this knowledge.” So in spite of all my difficulties, all my inconveniences, I am here because I am in duty. I, I…
That is my personal convenience, if I go and sit down at Vrindavana, I shall be very comfortable there. And I’ll be, I’ll have no anxiety, nothing of the sort. You see? But I have taken all the risk in the old age because I am in duty-bound. I am in duty-bound. So I have to execute my duty in spite of all my inconveniences. That is the idea.
So this is the whole thing, the whole basic principle of spiritual advancement of knowledge. One should first be convinced that he is not this body. He is not this body. Then other spiritual knowledge will begin. This is the basic principle. You’ll find it. You’ll find it in the Bhagavad-gita that this situation of spiritual life is called brahma-bhutah. Brahman. So,
brahma-bhutah prasannatma na socati na kanksati samah sarvesu bhutesu mad-bhaktim labhate param [Bg. 18.54]
So the, unless one understands himself, he also cannot understand God also. In his, in his misunderstanding position… Now, what Dr. Mishra is teaching is very nice because he is teaching that “Just first of all you know ‘What I am, what I…’ ” That’s very good. But that “what I am” can be known from the Bhagavad-gita also, that “I am not this body.
I am not this body.” That knowledge, at least theoretically, one must accept, that “I am not this body.” Now Krishna is describing that what is the position. I am not this body. That’s all right. Now, actually, what we are? What we are? I’m not body. That’s all right. Then what we are? Now, the next, next version is Krishna… We must always know that Krishna…
Here it is said, bhagavan uvaca. Bhagavan uvaca. Bhagavan uvaca means that He has got so extensive knowledge that there cannot be any mistake. He’s authority. He’s authority. So whatever He says is right. Is right. That is the conception of bhagavan. Here it is not said, Krishnah uvaca.
Because somebody may doubt Krishna, that “Krishna was a historical personality. Why you should be so much concerned with Krishna?” as is general view. But here it is said, bhagavan uvaca. And I have given you the definition of Bhagavan, that He is all knowledge. So whatever He will speak, Bhagavan, there cannot be any mistake.