In June of 1974, at the Hare Kåñëa
movement’s rural community near Valencey, France, Çréla Prabhupäda
talks to a group of intimate disciples. He points out that modern civilization’s
hunger for meat and its extensive system of vicious and barbaric slaughtering
facilities bring karmic re-actions in the form of world wars, which Çréla
Prabhupäda refers to as “slaughterhouses for humankind.”
The other day, Çréla Prabhupäda, you were saying that
in India, at least until recently, it was forbidden to eat cows—that those
who ate meat would eat only lower animals like dogs and goats.
Yes. For meat-eaters, that is what the Vedic culture recommends: “Eat dogs.”
As in Korea they are eating dogs, so you also can eat dogs. But don’t eat
cows until after they have died a natural death. We don’t say, “Don’t eat.”
You are so very fond of eating cows. All right, you can eat them, because
after their death we have to give them to somebody, some living entity.
Generally, cow carcasses are given to the vultures. But then, why only
to the vultures? Why not to the modern “civilized” people, who are as good
as vultures? [Laughter.]
These so-called civilized people—what
is the difference between these rascals and vultures? The vultures also
enjoy killing and then eating the dead body. “Make it dead and then enjoy”—people
have become vultures. And their civilization is a vulture civilization.
Animal-eaters—they’re like jackals, vultures, dogs. Flesh is not proper
food for human beings. Here in the Vedic culture is civilized food, human
food: milk, fruit, vegetables, nuts, grains. Let them learn it. Uncivilized
rogues, vultures, räkñasas [demons]—and they’re leaders.
Therefore I say that today the leaders
are all fourth-class men. And that is why the whole world is in a chaotic
condition. We require learned spiritual teachers—first-class men—to lead.
My disciples are training to become first-class men. If people will take
our advice, then everything will be all right. What is the use of fourth-class
men leading a confused and chaotic society?
If I speak so frankly, people will
be very angry. But basically, their leaders are all fourth class. First-class
men are great devotees of the Lord, who can guide the administrators and
the citizens through their words and practical example. Second-class men
are administrative, military men, who look after the smooth running of
the government and the safety of the citizens. And third-class men are
farmers, who grow crops and protect the cows. But today who is protecting
the cows? That is the third-class men’s business. So therefore everyone
is fourth class or lower. Çva-viò-varähoñöra-kharaiù
saàstutaù puruñaù paçuù [Çrémad-Bhägavatam
2.3.19]: People are living just like animals—without regulative, spiritual
principles—and from among themselves they are electing the biggest animals.
Anyone can do whatever he likes, whatever he thinks—no regulative principles.
But human life is meant for regulative
principles. We are insisting that our students follow regulative principles—no
meat-eating, no illicit sex, no intoxication, no gambling—just to make
them real human beings. Without regulative principles it is animal life.
In the human form of life, after
passing through millions of lives in the plant and animal species, the
spirit soul gets the chance to take up the yoga system—and yoga means strict
regulative principles. Indriya-saàyamaù—controlling the senses.
That is the real yoga system. But today most people, though they may say
they are practicing yoga, are misusing it. Just like the animals, they
cannot control their senses. As human beings, they have higher intelligence;
they should learn how to control the senses. This is human life. Na yat-karëa-pathopetaù:
One who has not heard the message of Kåñëa, the Supreme
Personality of Godhead—even for a moment—he’s an animal. The general mass
of people, unless they are trained systematically for a higher standard
of life in spiritual values, are no better than animals. They are on the
level of dogs, hogs, camels, and asses.
Modern university education practically
prepares one to acquire a doggish mentality for accepting the service of
a greater master. Like the dogs, after finishing their so-called education
the so-called educated persons move from door to door with applications
for some service. We have this experience in India. There are so many educated
men who are unemployed—because they have been educated as dogs. They must
find a master; otherwise they have no power to work independently. Just
like a dog—unless he finds a master, he is a street dog, loitering in the
So many Ph.D.’s are graduating from school now that there are not enough
jobs for them. So they have to take jobs as truck drivers or taxi drivers.
They’re supposed to be the educated class too—brähmaëas.
No, they are not brähmaëas. Those who give education in exchange
for money—they are not brähmaëas. For instance, we are lecturing,
educating people. We don’t say, “Give us a salary.” We simply ask them,
“Please come.” That is why we are cooking food and holding so many free
festivals. “We’ll give you food. We’ll give you a comfortable seat. Please
come and hear about self-realization and God consciousness.” We are not
asking money—“First of all pay the fee; then you can come and learn Bhagavad-gétä.”
We never say that. But these so-called teachers who first of all bargain
for a salary—“What salary will you give me?”—that is a dog’s concern. That
is not a brähmaëa’s concern. A brähmaëa will never
ask about a salary. A brähmaëa is eager to see that people are
educated. “Take free education and be educated; be a human being”—this
is a brähmaëa’s concern: You see? I came here not to ask for
any money but to give instruction.
Today the priests are afraid to speak too strongly—or else they’ll be fired
and get no salary. And the politicians—they’re also afraid to say what
they really believe. They’re afraid that they’ll be voted out or get no
more money to support themselves.
The priests are after money. They are not first class; they are low-class
men. This is the reason that Christianity has fallen down. The priests
cannot speak straightforwardly. There is a straightforward commandment—“Thou
shalt not kill.” But because people are already killing, the priests are
afraid to present the commandment straightforwardly. Now they are even
granting man-to-man marriage, what to speak of other things. The priests
are sermonizing on this idea of man-to-man marriage. Just see how degraded
they have become! Previously was there any conception like this, at least
outside America? Nobody thought that a man could be married to another
man. What is this? And the priests are supporting it. Do you know that?
So what is their standard?
däsé: That priest who visited was telling you that he was
asking all his parishioners to follow God’s law. So you asked him if he
was going to get them to follow the fifth commandment, the law against
killing—including animal-killing and especially cow-killing.
Yes, this is our proposal: “Why should you kill the cow? Let the cow be
protected.” You can take the cow’s milk and use this milk for making so
many nutritious, delicious preparations. Aside from that, as far as meat-eating
is concerned, every cow will die—so you just wait a while, and there will
be so many dead cows. Then you can take all the dead cows and eat. So how
is this a bad proposal? If you say, “You are restraining us from meat-eating”—no,
we don’t restrain you. We simply ask you, “Don’t kill. When the cow is
dead, you can eat it.”
You’ve pointed out that the cow is just like a mother.
Yes. She gives us her milk.
But in the West now, when their parents grow old the people generally send
them away to old age homes. So if people have no compassion even toward
their own parents, how can we educate them to protect the cow?
They don’t have to protect the cow. We shall protect the cow. Simply we
ask them, “Don’t purchase meat from the slaughterhouse. We shall supply
you the cow after her death.” Where is the difficulty?
Satsvarüpa däsa Gosvämé:
Not enough meat fast enough—they’re eating so much meat.
“Not enough”? By killing the cows, how will you get any more meat? The
total number of cows will remain the same. Simply wait for their natural
death. That is the only restriction. You have got a limited number of cows.
Either you wait for their death or you kill them at once—the number of
cows is the same. So we simply ask you, “Don’t kill them. Wait for their
natural death and then take the meat.” What is the difficulty? And we simply
ask you, “As long as they’re alive, let us take the cow’s milk and prepare
delicious foods for the whole human society.”
Yogeçvara däsa: If people
don’t kill the cows they will have even more meat, because that way the
cows will have more time to reproduce more cows. If they don’t kill the
cows right away, there will be even more cows.
More cows, yes. They’ll have more cows. We simply request, “Don’t kill.
Don’t maintain slaughterhouses.” That is very sinful. It brings down very
severe karmic reactions upon society. Stop these slaughterhouses. We don’t
say, “Stop eating meat.” You can eat meat, but don’t take it from the slaughterhouse,
by killing. Simply wait, and you’ll get the carcasses.
After all, how long will the cows
live? Their maximum age is twenty years, and there are many cows who live
only eighteen, sixteen, or ten years. So wait that much time; then regularly
get dead cows and eat. What is the difficulty?
For the first few years you may
not get quite as much as now. During that time you can eat some dogs and
cats. [Laughter.] Yes. In Korea they eat dogs. What is the difference between
here and Korea? You can also eat dogs for the time being. Or hogs. Eat
hogs. We don’t prohibit the killing of these less important animals. We
neither sanction nor prohibit. But especially we request cow protection,
because it is ordered by Lord Kåñëa. Go-rakñya:
“Protect the cows.” That is our duty.
And economically, also, it is very
useful. Kåñëa has not recommended this for nothing; it
is not like that. Kåñëa’s order has meaning. The cows
on our Hare Kåñëa farms are giving more milk than other
cows—because they are confident, “We will not be killed here.” It is not
like these rascals, these so-called Christians, say: “They have no soul;
they have no intelligence.” They have intelligence. In other places they
do not give so much milk. But on our farms they are very jolly. As soon
as the devotees call, they’ll come. Yes—just like friends. And they are
confident, “We’ll not be killed.” So they are jubilant, and they are giving
much milk. Yes.
In Europe and America the cows are
very good, but the cow-killing system is also very good. So you stop this.
You simply request them, “You’ll get the cow’s flesh. As soon as she is
dead, we shall supply you free of charge. You haven’t got to pay so much
money. You can get the flesh free and eat it then. Why are you killing?
Stop these slaughterhouses.” What is wrong with this proposal?
We don’t want to stop trade or the production
of grains and vegetables and fruit. But we want to stop these killing houses.
It is very, very sinful. That is why all over the world they have so many
Every ten or fifteen years there is a big war—a wholesale slaughterhouse
for humankind. But these rascals—they do not see it, that by the law of
karma, every action must have its reaction.
You are killing innocent cows and
other animals—nature will take revenge. Just wait. As soon as the time
is right, nature will gather all these rascals and slaughter them. Finished.
They’ll fight amongst themselves—Protestants and Catholics, Russia and
America, this one and that one. It is going on. Why? That is nature’s law.
Tit for tat. “You have killed. Now you kill yourselves.”
They are sending animals to the
slaughterhouse, and now they’ll create their own slaughterhouse. [Imitating
gunfire:] Tung! Tung! Kill! Kill! You see? Just take Belfast, for example.
The Roman Catholics are killing the Protestants, and the Protestants are
killing the Catholics. This is nature’s law. It’s not necessary that you
be sent to the ordinary slaughterhouse. You’ll make a slaughterhouse at
home. You’ll kill your own child—abortion. This is nature’s law. Who are
these children being killed? They are these meat-eaters. They enjoyed themselves
when so many animals were killed, and now they’re being killed by their
mothers. People do not know how nature is working. If you kill, you must
be killed. If you kill the cow, who is your mother, then in some future
lifetime your mother will kill you. Yes. The mother becomes the child,
and the child becomes the mother.
Mäà sa khädatéti
mäàsaù. The Sanskrit word is mäàsa. Mäm
means “me,” and sa means “he.” I am killing this animal; I am eating him.
And in my next lifetime he’ll kill me and eat me. When the animal is sacrificed,
this mantra is recited into the ear of the animal—“You are giving your
life, so in your next life you will get the opportunity of becoming a human
being. And I who am now killing you will become an animal, and you will
kill me.” So after understanding this mantra, who will be ready to kill
Many people today are discussing this topic of reincarnation, but they
don’t understand the significance of the effects—
How will they understand? All dull-headed fools and rascals, dressed like
gentlemen. That’s all. Tävac ca çobhate mürkho yävat
kiïcin na bhäñate. A rascal, a fool, is prestigious as
long as he does not speak. As soon as he speaks, his nature will be revealed—what
he really is. Therefore that priest who came did not stay long. He did
not want to expose himself.
Now, we must take to agricultural work—produce food and give protection
to the cows. And if we produce a surplus, we can trade. It is a simple
thing that we must do. Our people should live peacefully in farming villages,
produce grain and fruit and vegetables, protect the cows, and work hard.
And if there is a surplus, we can start restaurants. Kåñëa
conscious people will never be losers by following the instructions of
Kåñëa. They will live comfortably, without any material
want, and tyaktvä dehaà punar janma naiti [Bhagavad-gétä
4.90]: After leaving this body they will go directly to God. This is our
way of life.
So open restaurants in any part
of any city and make nice kacaurés, çrékhaëòa,
purés, halavä, and so many other delicacies. And people will
purchase them. They will come and sit down. I have given the format: “Every
preparation is ready—you can sit down. This is our standard charge for
a meal. Now, as much as you like you take. You can take one helping or
two, three, four—as much as you like. But don’t waste. Don’t waste.” Suppose
one man eats a single savory and another man eats four savories. That does
not mean we shall charge more. Same charge. Same charge. “You can sit down,
eat to your heart’s content, and be satisfied.” Let everyone be satisfied.
“We will supply. Simply don’t waste.” This is our program. Not that each
time—just as the hotel does—each time a plate is brought, immediately a
bill. No. “You can sit down and eat to your satisfaction. The charge stays
I think people will leave the restaurant with their pockets full of savories.
That we shall not allow.
Bhagavän däsa: You
were telling us one time that in India, if a person has a mango orchard
and you’re hungry you can come in and eat, but you cannot take any away
Yes. If you have a garden and somebody says, “I want to eat some fruit,”
you’ll say, “Yes, come on. Take as much fruit as you like.” But he should
not gather up more than he can eat and take it away. Any number of men
can come and eat to their satisfaction. The farmers do not even prohibit
the monkeys—“All right, let them come in. After all, it is God’s property.”
This is the Kåñëa conscious system: If an animal, say
a monkey, comes to your garden to eat, don’t prohibit him. He is also part
and parcel of Kåñëa. If you prohibit him, where will
I have another story; this one was
told by my father. My father’s elder brother was running a cloth shop.
Before closing the shop my uncle would put out a basin filled with rice.
Of course, as in any village, there were rats. But the rats would take
the rice and not cut even a single cloth. Cloth is very costly. If even
one cloth had been cut by a rat, then it would have been a great loss.
So with a few pennies’ worth of rice, he saved many dollars’ worth of cloth.
This Kåñëa culture is practical. “They are also part
and parcel of God. Give them food. They’ll not create any disturbance.
Give them food.”
Everyone has an obligation to feed
whoever is hungry—even if it is a tiger. Once a certain spiritual teacher
was living in the jungle. His disciples knew, “The tigers will never come
and disturb us, because our teacher keeps some milk a little distance from
the äçrama, and the tigers come and drink and go away.”
The teacher would call, “You! Tiger!
You can come and take your milk here!” [Laughter.] And they would come
and take the milk and go away. And they would never attack any members
of the äçrama. The teacher would say, “They are my men—don’t
I remember seeing at the World’s
Fair that a man had trained a lion. And the man was playing with that lion
just like one plays with a dog. These animals can understand, “This man
loves me. He gives me food; he is my friend.” They also appreciate.
When Haridäsa Öhäkura
was living in a cave and chanting Hare Kåñëa, a big snake
who also lived there decided to go away. The snake knew—“He’s a saintly
person. He should not be disturbed. Let me go away.” And from Bhagavad-gétä
we understand, éçvaraù sarva-bhütänäà
håd-deçe—Kåñëa is in every-one’s heart,
and He is dictating. So Kåñëa can dictate peace and harmony
to the animals, to the serpent, to everyone. [Çréla Prabhupäda
The Vedic culture offers so many
nice, delicious foods, and mostly they are made with milk products. But
these so-called civilized people—they do not know. They kill the cows and
throw the milk away to the hogs, and they are proud of their civilization—like
jackals and vultures. Actually, this Kåñëa consciousness
movement will transform the uncivilized people and bring the whole world
to real civilization.
Download a FREE Karma
Free Eggless Cake Cookbook HERE:
Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare