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KC Nectar - Feb 7

Nectar from Sri Krishna Kathamrtha
Submitted by Krpa

Darsan of Lord Jagannath at Ratha-yatra
A conversation with His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Devotee: Prabhupada, can you explain a little more about Ratha-yatra. Anyone who takes part in Ratha-atra, are they liberated?

Prabhupada: Certainly.

Devotee: Does that mean they will not take birth again?

Prabhupada: Yes, provided they take it seriously. Otherwise, if they keep their mentality differently, then according to mind, one has to get a body. But... Just like so many boys. They come here in the beginning out of curiosity, but gradually, they get the chance of becoming devotees. Similarly, if they take the chance, then they will be liberated. They come out of curiosity, but if they take it seriously, then they will be liberated. 

Just like the hospital is meant for curing disease. So one should take the treatment. If one simply goes and visits the hospital thinking "Now I am cured," how it can be done? Suppose if I advertise that "Anyone who comes to this hospital, he will be cured of his disease," that's a fact. But if he thinks that "I have come here. Now I am going," then how he will be cured? 

If one sees Jagannath on the Ratha-yatra, his way for liberation is open, but if he comes back again and entangles himself, then? One goes to the doctor. He gives injection. The disease is cured. But again he comes back and does the same thing so that he develops this disease again. So whose fault is it? 

This is called hasti-snana. The elephant takes bath very nicely but then as soon as it comes on the bank of the river or the lake, he takes dust and throws it all over his body again. If we do that, then we shall remain always dirty. You go, take bath, cleanse, but don't take dirt again. ...

It is a fact that seeing Jagannath one becomes mukta. But if he again comes to maya, then who can check him? Just like you are all on the path of liberation, but if you again come back to maya, then where is your liberation? If somebody comes here and sees his path for liberation is open. Now he should protect himself. Just a like disease, the fever is subsided. Now one should be careful not to relapse the fever. ... Not that, "Now I have seen Jagannath. My liberation is guaranteed. Now I can do anything. That's all." 

This mentality will not give you liberation. You have seen Jagannath, your sinful activities are now neutralized. Now don't commit them again. Now make progress. Then your liberation is guaranteed. Namno balad yasya hi papa buddhih. In every initiation we teach this, that once chanting Hare Krishna is sufficient to make us pure from all sinful activities. But if we commit sin again in the hope that, "Because I am chanting, this will be neutralized." that is the greatest sin. So one side, you should always chant Hare Krishna mantra so that you may not fall down; and on another side, you should be careful: "Now no illicit sex life, no intoxication, no meat-eating." In this way, if you carefully make progress, then your liberation is guaranteed.

(SP, Lecture, LA, 1 July 1971)