Lecture on BG 7.1 — Durban, October 9, 197
Chapter Seven, “Knowledge of the Absolute.” There are two things, absolute and the relative. This is relative world. Here we cannot understand one thing without the other. As soon as we speak that “Here is son,” there must be father. As soon as we say “Here is husband,” there must be wife. As soon as we say “Here is servant,” there must be master. As soon as we say “Here is light,” there must be darkness. This is called relative world. One has to be understood by other relative terms. But there is another world, which is called absolute world. There the master and the servant, the same. There is no distinction. Although one is master and other is servant, but the position is the same.
So the Seventh Chapter of Bhagavad-gītā is giving us some hint about the absolute world, absolute knowledge. How that knowledge can be attained, that is being spoken by the Absolute, Supreme Person, Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is the Absolute Supreme Person.
īśvaraḥ paramaḥ kṛṣṇaḥ
anādir ādir govindaḥ
This is the definition of Kṛṣṇa given by Lord Brahmā in his book known as Brahma-saṁhitā, very authorized book. This book was collected by Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu from southern India, and He presented it to His devotees when He came back from southern India tour. Therefore we accept this book, Brahma-saṁhitā, as very authoritative. This is our process of knowledge. We receive knowledge from the authority. Everyone receives knowledge from the authority, but general authority, and our process of accepting authority is little different. Our process of accepting one authority means he is also accepting his previous authority. One cannot be authority self-made. That is not possible. Then it is imperfect. I have given this example many times, that a child learns from his father. The child asks the father, “Father, what is this machine?” and the father says, “My dear child, it is called microphone.” So the child receives the knowledge from the father, “This is microphone.” So when the child says to somebody else, “This is microphone,” it is correct. Although he is child, still, because he has received the knowledge from the authority, his expression is correct. Similarly, if we receive knowledge from the authority, then I may be child, but my expression is correct. This is our process of knowledge. We do not manufacture knowledge. That is the process given in the Bhagavad-gītā in the Fourth Chapter, evaṁ paramparā-prāptam imaṁ rājarṣayo viduḥ (BG 4.2). This paramparā system…
imaṁ vivasvate yogaṁ
proktavān aham avyayam
vivasvān manave prāha
manur ikṣvākave ‘bravīt
Evaṁ paramparā. So absolute knowledge can be achieved when we hear from the Absolute. No person in the relative world can inform us about the absolute knowledge. That is not possible. So here we are understanding about the absolute world, absolute knowledge, from the Supreme Person, the Absolute Person. Absolute Person means anādir ādir govindaḥ (Bs. 5.1). He is the original person, but He has no original; therefore absolute. He is not to be understood being caused by somebody else. That is God. So here in this chapter, therefore, it is said, śrī bhagavān uvāca, Absolute Person… Bhagavān means the Absolute Person who does not depend on anyone else.
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