Krishna: The source of all knowledge
Accumulation of knowledge does not lead to happiness. One must know the eternal source and the true purpose of it, says Radhanath Swami
The knowledge and education that we receive today in schools, colleges, institutions and elsewhere is sourced from Krishna. For instance, if you are studying medicine, this branch of science (medicine) originates with Dhanvantari. He is the first medical authority. He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead who appeared millions and millions of years ago on the earth. It was he who propagated the System of medicine, the original system of medicine.
Krishna has also taught us how to benefit from herbs and roots and the facilities of the nature, of the creation that he has made, and how to adjust them in so many ways to treat any type of illness. Western medicine is simply more crude, in one sense, ways of just taking those same type of herbs and portions from the earth and adjusting them to cure illnesses. Whether it is ayurvedic medicine, homoeopathic medicine, naturopathic medicine, allopathic medicine, they are all taking, basically, what Krishna has provided on the earth. There are different ways of manipulating it to make it act against a particular disease in body. But all medicines, all knowledge, is coming from Krishna. Everything that you learn in college, its original and perfect source....is Krishna. So, we should bear in mind that the source of our memories is Krishna.
Krishna says “I am the source of remembrance, knowledge and forgetfulness.” The source..you cannot even remember your own name without Krishna. Every time you wake up in the morning, you brush your teeth, you may take a bath, you cannot even remember how to brush your teeth from one day to another unless Krishna gives you that remembrance. And if Krishna takes away the remembrance we have seen people just cannot do anything. The simplest thing in life — Krishna is the source of remembrance. He has given us our intelligence. He is within our heart. He has given us breath.
What does real Knowledge mean? It means is to offer everything in the service of Krishna. And what is the end? That is the beginning of knowledge. And what is the end of knowledge? To know how to utilise everything for the pleasure of that Lord who is the source of everything. That is the process given in the Bhagavad Gita — how to utilise all the wonderful opulences of this world for a purpose that will liberate us from the clutches of ignorance and bondage. And that is real knowledge. So if we utilise our education, we utilise our occupation with this understanding, that it is all ultimately meant to be offered back to Krishna. Just like the rivers offer water back to the ocean. Then, we find our real resting place. In our real transcendental nature. In reunion with the supreme almighty God.
A blind person following a blind person would lead to a situation when both would fall in a ditch. But these days it is a society of the blind leading the blind. In all the great scriptures of the world, this analogy is given. In the Christian scripture, the New Testament, Lord Jesus Christ said, “When the blind leads the blind, they both fall in the ditch.” Years before that, in Srimad Bhagvatam, Prahalada Maharaj says that when the blind lead the blind, they both fall in the ditch. Everyone falls in the ditch. Yet, it today’s society, people are obsessed with others’ opinions. They never really bother to understand what is the source and the goal of life.
Whatever one is learning can do them good only as long as they understand its true source and purpose. Once you do, then according to Krishna, you are a mahatma or a great soul, and not a duratma or an unfortunate soul.
It is an illusion that material things can give us happiness. We simply accept people’s conclusions of what is truth, what is reality. People are telling us that if you have a lot of money, you will be very happy. If you have a nice place to stay, you will be very happy. If you have a beautiful wife or handsome husband, you will be very happy. But nobody is happy. That is the problem. It is a mere illusion.
In this way, people work very hard, struggling to get more and more and more material assets, more and more material knowledge. They do this because they think that at the end of it, they will be happy. Because that is the propaganda of the world. I remember when I first left home to become a sage, my parents were very upset. They said to me, “We are miserable. We are very unhappy because you have left home. If you come home, we will become very happy.” I said, “I lived at home for eighteen years. And you were never happy. So, why should I think that if I come home now, you will be happy?”
It is an illusion — this conception of happiness in this material world. But now, they are quite happy. Because they are chanting the Holy Names of Krishna .... Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare. Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. Hari Bol.
Thus, Krishna is the source of all knowledge. He is the Supreme personality of Godhead. He teaches us how to live in this world with deep knowledge and in harmony with other people.
The writer is the spiritual leader of International Society of India
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