Monday, 2 June 2014

FAITH (Excerpts from Srila Prabhupada's teachings)

Faith In Daily Life

Without faith we cannot make any progress. In any field of activities we must have faith. For example, I cited the other day, just like we go to a barber shop, and we spread our neck, and the barber has got a sharp razor in his hand. If he likes, he can at once cut my throat. He has got the weapon ready. But because I have got faith he'll not do it—he'll simply shave my beard or mustaches... So this faith is required in every activity. Without faith we cannot step forward even in our daily life. So if we have got so, so faith in ordinary dealings, don't you think that we must have very good faith when we are making progress in spiritual line? 
(Lecture, Bhagavad Gita 4.30-5.3, New York, 24 August 1966)

Put Faith In The Right Person

If you have got faith in the person who has got eyes to lead you, then he will help you to cross the road. And if you put your faith to another blind man like you, then it will cause disaster. Faith is required, but to the right person. Then it will be all right. You know that one barber is honest: then you can make your neck like this and he is with a sharpened razor. But you have faith that "He will not cut my throat; he will shave me." This is faith. And if you do not know him and if you put your neck like this and if he is a rogue, he will cut your throat. That's all. The same faith, if you put it to the right person, you become cleansed, shaved, and the same faith put in the wrong person—your throat is cut off. So you must know where to put the faith. So our Vedic injunction is: "Put your faith to the brahma-nistam, one who is God-realized." Tad-vijjnnartham sa gurum evabhigacchet samit-panih srotriyah brahma-nistham: [MU 1.2.12] "One who has full knowledge in the Vedas and firmly fixed up in Brahman, God, you put your faith there." Otherwise there will be disaster.
(Morning Walk, New Delhi, 26 November, 1975)

Faith Begins From The Tongue

Faith begins from the tongue. "Why?" People will be surprised. "Faith must begin from the mind, from the eyes, and why it is said tongue?" They do not know. That is also faith, that "Simply engaging tongue in the service of the Lord, I shall understand." So this is also blind faith. But actually it is happening. Chant Hare Krsna and take prasadam. That's all.
(Morning Walk, San Francisco, 21 July, 1975)

How Does Faith Develop ?

Tamal Krsna: Srila Prabhupada? What is that ingredient or what is that thing which causes faith to develop in one? From someone becoming...
Prabhupada: Purity. Purity. The more you become pure, the faith is firm.
Narayana: So faith comes from previous pious activities?
Prabhupada: No, may not be previous activity. You believe the authority, spiritual master.
Tamal Krsna: That comes from purity, faith.
Prabhupada: Yes.
Tamal Krsna: As purity develops, one becomes more faithful.
Prabhupada: Yes. That purity is said, adau sraddha: "Beginning is faith." Now tato sadhu-sangah: "You mix with faithful men." Then it will develop. Otherwise, if you take simply initiation and then sleep, then faith will be lost. That is happening. Therefore it is said, adau sraddha tato sadhu-sangah. You accept faith, maybe blindly. Now you make further progress by mixing with advanced devotees. Then it will remain fixed. Otherwise you will loss.
(Morning Walk, San Francisco, 21 July, 1975)

Purity Increases Knowledge and Faith

Prabhupada: As you become purified, then your faith becomes fixed up with knowledge. Therefore that is stated in the Bhagavad-gita, yenah tv anta-gatah papam: [Bg. 7.28] "One who has finished his sinful life, he can become a devotee." Otherwise one cannot. First of all, beginning in faith. Then, by following the process, he becomes completely sinless. Then he, full knowledge. And so long he will be sinful, the things will be not properly manifested. Yenah tv anta-gatah papam.
Baradraj: So knowledge is not necessary for faith but faith is necessary for knowledge.
Prabhupada: Yes. Therefore devotee, without any knowledge he becomes devotee. That faith, only faith. The devotee advances. Jnanah ca yad ahaituki. Later on, they become automatically full of knowledge because they have strong faith. That is also stated in the Bhagavad-gita. Tesam evanukampartham aham ajnana-jah tamah nasayamy: [Bg. 10.11] "Because he is faithful, therefore I help him how to get knowledge."
(Morning Walk, San Francisco, 21 July, 1975)

From Faith To Love

Prabhupada: Of course, faith is the basic principle of everything. If you have no faith, then you cannot make progress in any line of action. So in Krsna consciousness is also... Faith is the basic principle. Just like I have come here. I started my classes in New York. So I was alone chanting Hare Krsna. Somebody came. Naturally, out of inquisitiveness, somebody comes. Somebody came and, "Oh, what this Indian swami is doing? Let me see." So he sat down. Some other came. He sat down. Then some of them took it, "Oh, Swamiji speaks very nice. Let me come again." He comes, he comes, and then he gets some faith: "Oh, Krsna consciousness is very nice." Then next point is that he wants intimate relationship with the swami, or me: "Swamiji, I have heard you so many days. I think it is very nice. So I want to be your student." So faith is the basic principle. The next stage is that he wants to become a student. And as soon as he wants to become a student, the next stage is that I accept him a disciple if I think that he is suitable. Then as soon as he becomes a disciple, he follows my regulative principles, injunctions. Then gradually he becomes free from all misgivings and naturally he gives up that illicit sex life or gambling or meat-eating and so many other things. In that way he becomes fixed up. Then he develops a taste; he cannot give up the society, taste. Then attraction, attachment. He wants to do everything for the society. In this way he develops love of Krsna. And in the final stage he loves only Krsna and nobody else. And because Krsna includes everyone, that means he loves everyone. 
(Interview, Seattle, 24 September, 1968)

Faith In Krishna

Only when one knows Lord Krsna's greatness can one firmly put one's unflinching faith in Him; otherwise, like the common man, even the great leaders of men will mistake Lord Krsna for one of the many demigods, or a historical personality, or a myth only.
(Srimad Bhagavatam, 2.4.6 Purport)

The Supreme Lord, the Absolute Personality of Godhead, Sri Krsna, although equal to everyone, is still more inclined to His unflinching devotee who is completely surrendered and knows no one else as his protector and master. Having unflinching faith in the Supreme Lord as one's protector, friend and master is the natural condition of eternal life. A living entity is so made by the will of the Almighty that he is most happy when placing himself in a condition of absolute dependence. 
(Srimad Bhagavatam, 1.9.22 Purport)  

If the members of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness, putting faith in Krsna as the center, live in harmony according to the order and principles of Bhagavad-gita, then they are living in Vaikuntha, not in this material world. 
(Srimad Bhagavatam, 3.15.33 Purport)  

Faith Liberates

There are many philosophers who write comments on the Bhagavad-gita but have no faith in Krsna. They will never be liberated from the bondage of fruitive action. But an ordinary man with firm faith in the eternal injunctions of the Lord, even though unable to execute such orders, becomes liberated from the bondage of the law of karma. 
(Bhagavad Gita, 3.31 Purport)

Three Levels of Faith

A first-class devotee never deviates from the principles of higher authority, and he attains firm faith in the scriptures by understanding with all reason and arguments.

The second-class devotee has been defined by the following symptoms: he is not very expert in arguing on the strength of revealed scripture, but he has firm faith in the objective. The purport of this description is that the second-class devotee has firm faith in the procedure of devotional service unto Krsna, but he may sometimes fail to offer arguments and decisions on the strength of revealed scripture to an opposing party.

The neophyte or third-class devotee is one whose faith is not strong and, at the same time, does not recognize the decision of the revealed scripture. The neophyte's faith can be changed by someone else with strong arguments or by an opposite decision. Unlike the second-class devotee, who also cannot put forward arguments and evidences from the scripture, but who still has all faith in the objective, the neophyte has no firm faith in the objective. Thus he is called the neophyte devotee. 
(Nectar of Devotion,Chapter 3)

Result Of No Faith

The demoniac person, who has no faith in God or the Supersoul within himself, performs all kinds of sinful activities simply for sense gratification. He does not know that there is a witness sitting within his heart. The Supersoul is observing the activities of the individual soul. As it is stated in the Vedic literature, the Upanisads, there are two birds sitting in one tree; the one is acting and enjoying or suffering the fruits of the branches, and the other is witnessing. But one who is demoniac has no knowledge of Vedic scripture, nor has he any faith; therefore he feels free to do anything for sense enjoyment, regardless of the consequences.
(Bhagavad Gita, 16.11-12 Purport)

Persons who are almost like animals have no faith in, or knowledge of, the standard revealed scriptures; and some, even though they have knowledge of, or can cite passages from, the revealed scriptures, have actually no faith in these words. And even though others may have faith in scriptures like Bhagavad-gita, they do not believe in or worship the Personality of Godhead, Sri Krsna. Such persons cannot have any standing in Krsna consciousness. They fall down. Out of all the abovementioned persons, those who have no faith and are always doubtful make no progress at all. Men without faith in God and His revealed word find no good in this world, nor in the next. For them there is no happiness whatsoever. 
(Bhagavad Gita, 4.40 Purport)

Qualities Of Faithful

One may be very learned in the mundane estimation, but that does not mean that he is free from all low activities of lust and anger. Good qualifications can be expected only from a pure devotee, who is always engaged in the thought of the Lord, or in samadhi, with faith. 
(Srimad Bhagavatam, 3.12.26 Purport)

Attaining Faith

One is called a faithful man who thinks that, simply by acting in Krsna consciousness, he can attain the highest perfection. This faith is attained by the discharge of devotional service, and by chanting "Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare," which cleanses one's heart of all material dirt.
(Bhagavad Gita 4.39 Purport)

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