(Lord Caitanya and His Associates chanting and dancing—click to enlarge)
"So Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu says, ceto-darpaṇa-mārjanam (CC Antya 20.12). This is Sanskrit word. It is meaning that 'This chanting of Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra will cleanse your heart.' Ceto-darpaṇa-mārjanam. So as soon as the heart is cleansed, then all our material problems are solved. Ceto-darpaṇa-mārjanaṁ bhava-mahā-dāvāgni-nirvāpaṇam. Bhava-mahā-dāvāgni, the Sanskrit word, means that 'This material world is just like a forest fire.' So forest fire... I think all of you must have got some knowledge of forest fire. It takes place automatically. And you can very easily experience that we are living very peacefully, but by the dealings of the politicians, at any moment there can be war. So this war is just like forest fire. Nobody likes war, but it takes place. So similarly, in the forest nobody goes to set fire, but it takes place. Therefore this material world is compared with the forest fire. So this forest fire can be extinguished by a different process than the fire in the ordinary way extinguished. Just like in the city if there is fire, you can take advantage of the fire brigade or you can take advantage of some volunteers carrying bucketful of water. But to extinguish the forest fire, neither you can take the help of the fire brigade nor the volunteer carrying bucketfuls of water. The forest fire can be extinguished when there is rainfall from the sky. Similarly, this misunderstanding of the world—although we are one, but we have divided ourselves in so many groups—this will create forest fire, and this forest fire can be extinguished.
Therefore this Kṛṣṇa consciousness Movement is just like falling of rain from the cloud. Yes. The cloud means a process which collects water from the sea and distributes all over the surface. And the same water again glides down through the river unto the sea. Similarly, this Movement means taking mercy from the ocean of mercy of Kṛṣṇa and distribute it all over the world, so that again the merciful water goes down to the sea. So those who actually want peace or mercy of God, they should kindly try to understand the philosophy of Kṛṣṇa consciousness Movement. And even though you have no time to understand this philosophy through books of knowledge, you can simply join with us for chanting and dancing this Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra.
So I am very glad that you are joining with this Movement, and the more you come to us and chant with us and dance with us, your spiritual life will be invoked. That spiritual consciousness, or Kṛṣṇa consciousness, is there in everyone's heart, dormant. It has simply to be awakened. Just like the European and American boys who have come to your country, four years ago they did not know what is Kṛṣṇa. So now they are dancing in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Not that we have bribed them to dance in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Their dormant Kṛṣṇa consciousness has been awakened. Similarly, this same Kṛṣṇa consciousness is there within your heart. It doesn't matter whether you are Indian or Japanese or European—Kṛṣṇa consciousness is there in everyone's heart. By this process it can be awakened. And as soon as it is awakened... It is practically proved. When you are here, you are dancing in ecstasy. That means it is being awakened.
So simply by trying to understand, or simply by coming here and joining this chanting and dancing and taking little prasādam, gradually your consciousness, Kṛṣṇa consciousness, also will be awakened. So chanting, dancing and taking prasādam are universal formula, and we have experienced everywhere in the world. In Europe, America, Australia, Africa, Canada, in Japan—everywhere—it is being proved that simply by chanting, dancing and taking prasādam, everyone is coming to Kṛṣṇa consciousness. So there is a great need of awakening this Kṛṣṇa consciousness all over the world, because people, being lost of this consciousness, are creating only problems of life. So I thank you very much for your coming here and taking part with this festival. Thank you very much."
(Srila Prabhupada Lecture, Tokyo, April 29, 1972)