(Click to enlarge photo of Srila Prabhupada in Mauritius, October 1975)
"Those who are on this path are resolute in purpose, and their aim is one. O beloved child of the Kurus, the intelligence of those who are irresolute is many-branched."
(Bhagavad-gītā As It Is 2.41)
"As long as one is attached to material enjoyment, bhakti-yoga cannot be understood. This is confirmed in Bhagavad-gītā (BG 2.44):
samādhau na vidhīyate
'In the minds of those who are too attached to sense enjoyment and material opulence, and who are bewildered by such things, the resolute determination of devotional service to the Supreme Lord does not take place.' As long as one is very much attached to material enjoyment, one cannot concentrate his mind on the subject matter of devotional service.
The Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is progressing successfully in the Western countries at the present moment because the youth in the West have reached the stage of vairāgya, or renunciation. They are practically disgusted with material pleasure from material sources, and this has resulted in a population of hippies throughout the Western countries. Now if these young people are instructed about bhakti-yoga, Kṛṣṇa consciousness, the instructions will certainly be effective."
(Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 6.16.26, Purport)
"Those who are attached to material enjoyment cannot be fixed in devotional service to the Lord. They cannot understand Bhagavān, Kṛṣṇa, or His instruction, Bhagavad-gītā. Adānta-gobhir viśatāṁ tamisram: their path actually leads toward hellish life.
As confirmed by Ṛṣabhadeva, mahat-sevāṁ dvāram āhur vimukteḥ: (SB 5.5.2) one must try to understand Kṛṣṇa by serving a devotee. The word mahat refers to a devotee.
mahātmānas tu māṁ pārtha
daivīṁ prakṛtim āśritāḥ
jñātvā bhūtādim avyayam
'O son of Pṛthā, those who are not deluded, the great souls, are under the protection of the divine nature. They are fully engaged in devotional service because they know Me as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, original and inexhaustible.' (BG 9.13) A mahātmā is one who is constantly engaged in devotional service, twenty-four hours a day. As explained in the following verses, unless one adheres to such a great personality, one cannot understand Kṛṣṇa. Hiraṇyakaśipu wanted to know where Prahlāda had gotten this Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Who had taught him? Prahlāda sarcastically replied, 'My dear father, persons like you never understand Kṛṣṇa. One can understand Kṛṣṇa only by serving a mahat, a great soul. Those who try to adjust material conditions are said to be chewing the chewed. No one has been able to adjust material conditions, but life after life, generation after generation, people try and repeatedly fail. Unless one is properly trained by a mahat—a mahātmā, or unalloyed devotee of the Lord—there is no possibility of one's understanding Kṛṣṇa and His devotional service.'"
(Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 7.5.30, Purport)
"In His Paramātmā feature, Kṛṣṇa is the old friend of everyone. According to Vedic injunction, Kṛṣṇa is sitting with the living entity side by side. According to the śruti-mantra (dvā suparṇā sayujā sakhāyāḥ), the Lord is sitting within the heart of every living entity as suhṛt, the best friend. The Lord is always eager to have the living entity come home, back to Godhead. Sitting with the living entity as witness, the Lord gives him all chances to enjoy himself materially, but whenever there is an opportunity, the Lord gives good counsel and advises the living entity to abandon trying to become happy through material adjustment and instead turn his face toward the Supreme Personality of Godhead and surrender unto Him. When one becomes serious to follow the mission of the spiritual master, his resolution is tantamount to seeing the Supreme Personality of Godhead. As explained before, this means meeting the Supreme Personality of Godhead in the instruction of the spiritual master. This is technically called vāṇī-sevā. Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura states in his Bhagavad-gītā commentary on the verse vyavasāyātmikā buddhir ekeha kuru-nandana (BG 2.41) that one should serve the words of the spiritual master. The disciple must stick to whatever the spiritual master orders. Simply by following on that line, one sees the Supreme Personality of Godhead."
(Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 4.28.51, Purport)
"In conclusion, if a disciple is very serious to execute the mission of the spiritual master, he immediately associates with the Supreme Personality of Godhead by vāṇī or vapuḥ. This is the only secret of success in seeing the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Instead of being eager to see the Lord in some bush of Vṛndāvana while at the same time engaging in sense gratification, if one instead sticks to the principle of following the words of the spiritual master, he will see the Supreme Lord without difficulty."
(Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 4.28.51, Purport)