(Srila Prabhupada and disciples, Toronto, 1976)
"Everyone wants to become happy. That is the highest principle. Ātyantika-duḥkha-nivṛtti. The whole struggle is going on to minimize our miseries and to increase our happiness. That is our attempt. Everyone is working for that. Ātyantika-duḥkha nivṛtti. Duḥkha means unhappiness, and ātyantika means ultimate. So people do not understand that what is that ultimate happiness. Ultimate happiness is there. No, there is no duḥkha, there is no unhappiness. That is ultimate happiness. If you study whatever happiness we are trying to establish, there is unhappiness also. It is not unmixed. It is mixed. The economic development... Just like modern age, if you..., if any man wants to become rich man, he has to first of all accept unhappiness, to work very hard, day and night. Then he can get some money. Then, engaging that money for increasing further money, increasing further money... Then one day he may be millionaire. So that millionaire, to become, that is also not undisturbed happiness. 'How to keep the money? How to invest it?'
So here, in the material world, as we are engaged, unalloyed happiness is not possible. But if you actually want unalloyed happiness, then you have to be advanced in spiritual consciousness, unalloyed. Ātyantika-duḥkha-nivṛtti. Ātyantika means ultimate, and duḥkha means unhappiness. Ātyantika-duḥkha-nivṛtti. Nivṛtti means finished. So people do not see what is that ātyantika-duḥkha-nivṛtti, what is that ultimate disappearance of unhappiness. That they do not know. So many things they do not know. Therefore it requires education. Education means knowledge, to get knowledge. And the Vedic direction is that if you want really knowledge, then tad-vijñānārthaṁ sa gurum evābhigacchet (MU 1.2.12): 'One has to go to the guru, or the spiritual master.' Gurum eva abhigacchet. One must go. There is no alternative. Nobody can say that 'Without going to the guru we can become happy.' That is not possibly, according to Vedic principle. Even Caitanya Mahāprabhu, although He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, He accepted guru. Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality, He accepted guru. So that is our Vedic principle. The beginning of Bhagavad-gītā it is said, evaṁ paramparā-prāptam imaṁ rājarṣayo viduḥ (BG 4.2). Imaṁ rājarṣi. Rājarṣi means great saintly kings. They also accepted a predecessor guru.
imaṁ vivasvate yogaṁ
proktavān aham avyayam
vivasvān manave prāha
manur ikṣvākave 'bravīt
Everything is there.
So if we actually want to be happy, then we should not live like animals, without any restriction, without any... Even in your state, just to keep proper management of the state, there are so many laws. Even you... As soon as you go on the street, you see there is state law immediately: 'Keep to the right.' Discipline must be there. That is dharma, discipline, to abide by the state laws. There must be some discipline. Similarly, to make yourself advanced to spiritual life, you must have to observe the discipline. Without discipline, it is not possible. Ādau gurvāśrayam. Therefore Rūpa Gosvāmī says in his Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu that discipline means one who observes discipline, he is called disciple. Everyone knows it. Disciple means one who observes discipline. If one does not observe discipline, then he is not a disciple. And one who is not a disciple, his life is chaotic. He cannot be happy. Therefore Vedas says that 'You must accept a bona fide guru and become disciplined under his instruction.' Then you'll know the higher system of knowledge, the necessity of life, and thus you become happy."
(Srila Prabhupada Lecture, Honolulu, January 21, 1974)