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(Click to enlarge painting of Srila Prabhupada arriving in America, 1965)

Prabhupāda: A devotee, how he receives dangerous position? Danger must be there. Danger... Because this place, this material world is full of dangers. These foolish persons, they do not know that. They are trying to avoid the dangers. That is struggle for existence. Everyone is trying to become happy and avoid danger. This is the material business. Ātyantika-sukham. Ātyantika-sukham. Ultimate happiness. A man is working and thinking: "Let me work now very hard, and let me have some bank balance so when I shall get old, I shall enjoy life without any working." That is the inner intention of everyone. Nobody wants to work. As soon as he gets some money he wants to retire from work, and to become happy. But that is not possible. You cannot be happy in that way.

Here it is said: apunar bhava-darśanam. The real danger is... She is speaking of apunaḥ. Apunaḥ means... A means not, and punar bhava means repetition of birth and death. The real danger is repetition of birth and death. That has to be stopped. And not this so-called danger. This is all... The material world is full of dangers. Padaṁ padaṁ yad vipadām. Just like if you are on the ocean. If you are on the ocean, you might have very strong ship, very safe ship, but that is not safety. Because you are on the sea, at any time there can be dangers. Perhaps you remember from your country, there was, what is that, Titanic?

Devotee: Titanic.

Prabhupāda: Everything was safe, but on the first voyage it was drowned, and all important men of your country, they lost their life. So danger there must be because you are in a dangerous position. This material world itself is dangerous position. So our business is... That danger must be there. Now our business should be how to cross over the sea as soon as possible. So long you are on the sea, you are on the dangerous position, however strong your ship may be. That's a fact. So you should not be disturbed by the sea waves. Just try to cross over the sea. Go to the other side. That is your business. Similarly, so long we are in this material world, there must be dangerous calamities because this is the place of calamity. So our business is, even within these calamities, dangers, how we develop our Kṛṣṇa consciousness and, after giving up this body, we go back to home, back go Kṛṣṇa. That should be our business.

(Srila Prabhupada Lecture, Los Angeles, April 17, 1973)
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THE PRABHUPADA CONNECTION
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Crossing the Sea of Dangers