Absolute Good

Krsna and cowsBy Srila B.R. Sridhara Deva Goswami

I am not a member of the ‘save the cow committee’. I am a member of the Krsna consciousness movement. I am to deal with that. There are so many associations. The Jains and so-called Hindus may be very eager to form associations against cow-killing and proclaim, “Don’t kill the cow.” We belong to another plane. What is the question of killing a cow? Krsna says in Bhagavad-gita that there is a position in which one can efface the entire universe, including all the cows, brahmanas, and sadhus within it, and still receive no reaction.1 There is such a position. Try to attain that position. That position is not the highest position either. But through that you are to pass to the plane of pure self-abnegation.

Don’t allow yourself to be a member of this physical world, the world of physical good and bad. Try to be aloof from physical relativity and be a member of the nirguna (transcendental) plane. All calculation of good and bad here is false. Both good and bad are false. So only engage yourself in distributing Krsna. Don’t lose your energy; don’t invest your energy in any business of lower profit. Always try to distribute Krsna.

You are to connect with Krsna. Your connection is with Krsna. We are to undergo birth and death thousands of times if that will connect us with Krsna. To reconnect with Krsna we shall embrace that. Mahaprabhu says,

sanatana, deha-tyage krishna yadi paiye, koti-deha ksaneke tabe chhadite pariye

“Sanatana, if by giving up this body one can get Krsna, then in a second I am ready to die crores of times.”Sri Caitanya-caritamrita, Antya, 4.55

But we cannot connect with Krsna through such foolish sacrifice. It has got its own way: sravana-kirtana, sadhu-sanga, Vaishnava-seva (hearing and chanting about Krsna, association and serving his devotees). Krsna cannot be reached by sacrificing the body. That is a ksatriya tendency, a brutal tendency, “I kill my own body. I am a very big man.” No. It is a foolish attempt. It may amaze a worldly man but in Krsna consciousness a worldly hero has no value.

Trying to stop cow-killing may be the duty of someone in a particular plane of life. If anyone comes to me, I may say, “Oh! Don’t kill.” So much I may say. But I shall not go to fight and die for that cause. My time is so valuable; it is there to attain Krsna consciousness. I can’t waste my time in material struggle.

The Lord’s interest is so great that Abraham was going to kill his son Ishmael for Him. Abraham heard that Allah wanted him to sacrifice his son and he was ready to do that. To satisfy the sweet will of Krsna, not Krsna, but some conception of the Lord, he was required to kill his son, and he was up to that test: “Yes. I am ready.” So Krsna is so high. In comparison to Krsna’s service, to save the body of a cow or other things cannot become a concern. Such things are a much lower propensity. Krsna’s service is so high.

Everything can be sacrificed for Krsna. His service is so valuable. Nothing can be compared to it. It is so valuable, so urgent, so necessary, and so pure. We should not cheat ourselves. To feel that we are engaged in krsna-katha, that we can try to serve Krsna, that is so high, so valuable. An ordinary man immersed in maya’s good and bad, in sattva-raja-tama (the modes of material nature), will try to stop cow killing, protect brahmanas, and so on.

Also, cows are revered here because Krsna loves cows there (in the spiritual world). Here there is a perverted reflection of that.  Cows are a favorite of Krsna but his cows are not the cows of this world. Still there is some perverted reflection of that here and seeing cows killed will bring about an undesirable sentiment within a sadhu.

  1. Bhagavad-gita, 18.17:

    yasya nahankrito bhavo buddhir yasya na lipyate
    hatvapi sa imal lokan na hanti na nibadhyate

    “One who is free from false ego, whose intelligence is not entangled (in the mundane), neither kills nor becomes bound by his actions, even if he destroys the entire world.

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