(Krishna rescues His beloved devotees by lifting Govardhana Hill—click to enlarge)
Prabhupāda: So pratikāram and apratikāram. Whatever we have manufactured, pratikāram, counteraction, that will be also failure if Kṛṣṇa does not sanction it. That is realized by Prahlāda Mahārāja. He says "My dear Lord," Hiraṇyakaśipu, that "people have manufactured so many pratikāram, counteraction." But tanu-bhṛtām, "Those who have accepted this material body, they are simply manufacturing things to counteract dangers. But even though they have all this counteracting machine or counteracting agents, still, without Your sanction, this counteracting machine or agent will not be fruitful." So similarly, Arjuna is being protected by Kṛṣṇa. So even though Arjuna is not well-equipped, apratikāram, still he will be saved. Because Kṛṣṇa is there. Tāvad vibho tanu-bhṛtāṁ tvad-upekṣitānām (SB 7.9.19). And even one is well-equipped and if Kṛṣṇa does not like to save him, he'll not be saved. Always mind this. Rakṣe kṛṣṇa mare ke, mare kṛṣṇa rakṣe ke. This is ordinary, that if Kṛṣṇa wants to kill you, nobody can save you. And if Kṛṣṇa wants to save you, nobody can kill you. This is the position.
So the examples are given by Prahlāda Mahārāja: bālasya neha śaraṇaṁ pitarau nṛsiṁha. "My Lord Nṛsiṁhadeva, the parents of children, they are not actually protector of the children." Because generally we think that "This child, this boy has got his father, mother, he is well-protected." No. Father and mother... Every father and mother wants to protect the child, but still, the child has to meet some danger and dies. There are so many experience. Similarly, bālasya neha śaraṇaṁ pitarau nṛsiṁha. The father and mother is a counteraction for the dangers of the child. But Prahlāda Mahārāja said, "No, they are not counteraction." It is not that if a child is in danger, because the father and mother is very strong, very rich, he will be able to give protection to the child. No. That is not possible. Then nārtasya cāgadam. The medicine... A person is suffering from some disease, some fatal disease. If you think "I shall engage first-class physician and I shall supply first-class medicine," if you think, "Then the patient will be saved," no, that is not possible. That is not possible. We have got many experiences like that. Then no rich man would have died. Because he has got money, he can employ first-class physician, first-class medicine, and simply by engaging such things, counteracting, pratikāram, he cannot be saved. There are many examples like that. So the conclusion is tāvad vibho tanu-bhṛtāṁ tvad-upekṣitānām: (SB 7.9.19) "If You neglect, if You have decided that this person, this child cannot be saved, then any amount of pratikāram will not help, will not help."
Therefore real pratikāram is Kṛṣṇa. Real pratikāram is Kṛṣṇa, counteractive. So better we take shelter of Kṛṣṇa as Kṛṣṇa says, sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja (BG 18.66). You must always know that no counteraction will be beneficial for us unless we are protected by Kṛṣṇa. So therefore our business is fully surrender to Kṛṣṇa and seek His protection. Kṛṣṇa says, "Yes," ahaṁ tvāṁ sarva-pāpebhyo mokṣayiṣyāmi, "I shall give you protection." This is Bhagavad-gītā philosophy. We have to believe on the assertion of Kṛṣṇa that "He is prepared to give me all protection, provided I have fully surrendered unto His lotus feet."
(Srila Prabhupada Lecture, London, August 1, 1973)