(Srila Prabhupada Quotes from Database)
This is our...Jihva, tara madhye...If you want to conquer the tongue, then you fix up your mind that you shall not take anything which is not offered to Krsna. Then your tongue will be controlled. Tara madhye jihva ati lobhamaya sudurmati. Tongue is the bitterest enemy of the living being. The tongue is dragging Jihva. “Kindly give me this immediately. Kindly give me this meat.” Why? Control. Krsna says, patram puspam phalam toyam. So we have to take prasadam, eat Krsna prasadam.
But it is, the sastra injunction is there: sevonmukhe hi jihvadau. Jihva means tongue. So in order to see Krsna, in order to understand Krsna, the first business is to control your tongue. Therefore we say, don't take meat, don't take liquor. Because it is controlling the tongue. The tongue is the most strong enemy, as perverted sense. And these rascals, they say, "No, you can eat whatever you like. It has nothing to do with religion." But Vedic sastra says, "You rascal, first of all control your tongue. Then you can understand what is God."
So this is called Vedic injunction—perfect. If you control your tongue, then you control your belly, then you control your genital.
Prabhupada: Yes. Control. It is very difficult. To control. But if you put it under the control of the Supreme, it will be controlled. You want to see very beautiful thing. But if you engage your seeing power on the most beautiful, Krsna, then you forget, other things. This is sense control. You are going to restaurant to enjoy your tongue, but if you take Krsna-prasadam, then you’ll forget going to restaurant. This is sense control. Sense control means to engage the senses in the service of Krsna. Hrsikena Hrsikesa-sevanam bhaktir ucyate. Simply we have to purify the senses. The senses must be there. Otherwise, I am not a living being. I am stone. But at the present moment, I am misguided. I am using my senses for other purposes than Krsna’s. Therefore I cannot control. And as soon as you apply your senses for satisfying Krsna, then they are controlled automatically.
Therefore the highest perfectional yoga system is to control the mind. And you can control the mind very easily if you keep the lotus feet of Krsna within you, that's all. Simply think of Krsna and you are conqueror. You are victorious. You become topmost yogi. Because after all, the yoga system is, yoga indriya samyama. Yoga means to control the senses. And above the sense, the mind. So if you control the mind, the senses are controlled automatically. Your tongue wants to eat something nonsense, but if your mind is strong, mind says, "No. You cannot eat. You cannot eat anything except Krsna-prasāda." Then tongue is controlled. So senses are controlled by the mind. Indriyāni parāny āhur indriyebhyah param manah . My body means senses, my activities means sensual activities, that's all. But above the senses is the mind. Above the mind is the intelligence. And above the intelligence is the spirit soul. If one is on the spiritual platform, on the soul platform, then his intelligence is spiritualized, his mind is spiritualized, his senses are spiritualized, he is spiritualized. This is the process of Krsna consciousness. Because actually the spirit soul is working but he has given his power of attorney to this nonsense mind. He is sleeping. But when he's awakened, the master is awakened, the servant cannot do anything nonsense. Similarly if you are awakened in Krsna consciousness, your intelligence, your mind, or your senses cannot act nonsensically. They must according to that. That is spiritualization. That is called purification.
The mind is the master of the senses. The central sense, the chief sense, the prime minister sense is the mind. Therefore Mahārāja Ambarisa first of all engaged his mind in Krsna. Sa vai manah Krsna-padāravindayoh. If you engage your mind always to the lotus feet of Krsna, then the sense deviation, sense going other, otherwise—immediately controlled. Immediately controlled. The senses are very strong. They are compared with serpents. Durdāntendriya-kāla-sarpa-patalī. Kāla-sarpa. Just like cobra. Someway or other, it touches—immediately death. So our senses are so strong that it is simply dragging us towards hell. Adānta-gobhir viśatam tamisram. Mind is dragging somewhere, eye is dragging somewhere, ear is dragging somewhere, and touch sensation is dragging somewhere. In this way we are perplexed.
Therefore the process is sa vai manah Krsna-padāravindayor vacamsi vaikuntha-gunānuvarnane. You have to engage your mind unto the lotus feet of Krsna, and your tongue, always chanting and taking little prasādam. Then all senses will be controlled. Sa vai manahKrsna-padāravindayor vacamsi vaikuntha-gunānuvarnane. And see. Eyes should be engaged to see the Deity, very gorgeously, nicely dressed. Then our eyes will not ask, "Oh, let me see this beautiful woman." No. You will see the most beautiful woman, Rādhāranī, and you will become... Similarly, ear should be engaged always hearing about Krsna. Eyes, ear... Nose should be engaged for smelling the flower which is offered to Krsna. Legs should be engaged for preaching work going or going to the temple. Hands should be engaged for cleansing the temple. In this, way if you have engaged always your senses, you are perfect. You are the greatest yogi. Yogi means yoga indriya-samyamah: "Yoga practice means to control the senses." But this bhakti process is so nice - automatically senses are controlled.
So unless one has control over these things, over the tongue... Over the tongue means tongue is not allowed to eat anything except Krsna-prasādam. Tongue is not allowed to vibrate anything except Hare Krsna or topics in the Bhagavad-gītā and the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. That is controlling. Controlling the tongue does not mean that you lock up your tongue. Sometimes in India if you go... There are so many bogus things. One has cut the tongue and has locked it. But tongue cannot be locked. Tongue, any sense, you cannot stop its activities. Simply you have to divert it. Just like my eyes. My eyes want to see very beautiful thing, very beautiful girl, very beautiful dress. So you practice, you decorate the Deity in the temple very beautifully with dress, with ornaments, with flowers, and see. That means your propensity for seeing beautiful things will be satisfied; at the same time, you become Krsna conscious. Your tongue wants to eat very nice things. All right, you get it, Krsna-prasādam. Krsna is offered the nicest cooked foodstuff. So you satisfy your tongue; at the same time, you become Krsna conscious. So, Krsna conscious movement is so nice, that there is no forceful prohibition of the senses. Even the sense organ, generative organ, that can be used also for Krsna. How? If you can beget children who will be Krsna conscious, then produce hundred, one hundred children. Otherwise stop producing cats and dogs.
So no sense is stopped, but you have to utilize it for Krsna. You can walk to Krsna's temple, you can dance to the tune of Krsna's song, you can eat nice foodstuff, you can see very beautiful Deities, you can hear very beautiful sound, you can talk on Krsna philosophically from Bhāgavata and Bhagavad-gītā . So everything in Krsna consciousness. There is no stoppage. And devotional service means that purifying the senses and engage them in the service of Krsna. Tat-paratvena nirmalam. Sarvopādhi-vinirmuktam tat-paratvena nirmalam. One has to get himself freed from all material designations. We are impure because we are compact in designation: "Oh, I am Christian," "I am Hindu," "I am American," "I am Indian," "I am white," "I am black." So these are all designation. If you simply know that "I am servant of Krsna. I am servant of God," then you are purified. You are neither white nor black nor this nor that, but you are simple servant of Krsna. If you continue this consciousness, then you are purified immediately. No more contamination. Sarvopādhi-vinirmuktam tat-paratvena nirmalam. And as soon as you take it very seriously, that "I am Krsna's"—neither to the society, neither to the community, neither to the country, neither to the international society, or neither anything, but "I am Krsna's"—if this firm conviction is there, then you are completely pure: tat-paratvena nirmalam. And in the pure condition, when you engage your senses in the service of the Lord, that is called Krsna conscious service or devotional service.
The tongue is the most important sense within our body; therefore for controlling our senses it is recommended that one should control first of all the tongue. Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura sings in his song: ta'ra madhye jihva ati lobhamaya sudurmati. Our present conditional state is like this. Sarira avidya-jal, we are packed up in the network of this material body. It is just like a fish is caught within a net. Similarly, we are caught up by this network of this material body. Not only this body -- we are changing this net in various phases of life. There are 8,400,000's of holes of this network. This is a network of ignorance, avidya-jal. Avidya means ignorance. Sarira avidya-jal jadendriya tahe kal. And this network, my imprisonment within this network of ignorance, is being continued on account of these dangerous senses. Sense enjoyment. So out of these dangerous senses, Bhaktivinoda Thakura says, the tongue is the most dangerous. Tongue is the most dangerous. The tongue... If we cannot control the tongue, then the tongue will oblige me to take different types of body, one after another.
So just we are teaching, "Just control your tongue." That is called śamaḥ damaḥ. " Because the tongue wants something, I have to eat, give it—that is not human civilization. If I control my tongue-tongue wants this thing; I say, "No, not this thing; you take this thing,"—then you are master. You are master of the senses. Otherwise you are servant of the senses. Because some of my senses want something... That is natural. But if I can control: "No, this not. This," that is called śamaḥ, damaḥ. And if I become victim of the dictation of the senses, then I cannot make progress in my spiritual life; I am third-class, fourth-class man. Mind wants to steal something. If you can control, "No, why stealing?" Then you are master.
“Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura states that the business of the tongue is to gratify itself with the varieties of flavor, but by wandering in the twelve holy forests of Vraja-mandala (Vṛndāvana), one can be freed from the twelve flavors of material sense gratification. The five principal divisions of material relationships are neutral admiration, servitude, friendship, parental affection and conjugal love; the seven subordinate features of material relationships are material humor, astonishment, chivalry, compassion, anger, dread and ghastliness. Originally, these twelve rasas, or flavors of relationships, are exchanged between the Supreme Personality of Godhead and the living entity in the spiritual world; and by wandering in the twelve forests of Vṛndāvana one can respiritualize the twelve flavors of personal existence. Thus one will become a liberated soul, free from all material desires. If one artificially tries to give up sense gratification, especially that of the tongue, the attempt will be a failure, and in fact one's desire for sense gratification will increase as a result of artificial deprivation. Only by experiencing real, spiritual pleasure in relationship with Kṛṣṇa can one give up material desires.” (SB11.8.20pur)
Even the beginning stage of devotional service, called sādhana-bhakti (regulatory practice), is so powerful that it brings one to the platform of anartha-nivṛtti, where one becomes free from unwanted sinful habits and gains relief from the pressure of the tongue, belly and genitals. Thus one is delivered from the bondage of material addiction and can no longer be cheated by the allurements of the material energy. As it is said, all that glitters is not gold. In this regard Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta SarasvatīṬhākura recommends that we consider the following song written by his father, Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura:
"O Lord, this material body is a lump of ignorance, and the senses are a network of paths to death. Somehow, we have fallen into this ocean of material sense enjoyment, and of all the senses the tongue is most voracious and uncontrollable; it is very difficult to conquer the tongue in this world. But You, dear Kṛṣṇa, are very kind to us and have given us such nice prasādam, just to control the tongue. Now we take this prasādam to our full satisfaction and glorify Their Lordships ŚrīŚrīRādhā-Kṛṣṇa, and in love call for the help of Lord Caitanya and Lord Nityānanda."
Absorbing the intelligence in Me constitutes mental equilibrium, and complete discipline of the senses is self-control. Tolerance means patiently enduring unhappiness, and steadfastness occurs when one conquers the tongue and genitals. The greatest charity is to give up all aggression toward others, and renunciation of lust is understood to be real austerity. Real heroism is to conquer one's natural tendency to enjoy material life, and reality is seeing the Supreme Personality of Godhead everywhere. Truthfulness means to speak the truth in a pleasing way, as declared by great sages. Cleanliness is detachment in fruitive activities, whereas renunciation is the sannyasa order of life. The true desirable wealth for human beings is religiousness, and I, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, am sacrifice. Religious remuneration is devotion to the acarya with the purpose of acquiring spiritual instruction, and the greatest strength is the pranayama system of breath control.
Lord Krsna here describes those qualities that are desirable for persons advancing in human life. Sama, or "mental equilibrium," means to fix the intelligence in Lord Krsna. Mere peacefulness without Krsna consciousness is a dull and useless state of mind. Dama, or "discipline," means first to control one's own senses. If one wants to discipline one's children, disciples or followers without controlling one's own senses, one becomes a mere laughingstock. Tolerance means to patiently endure unhappiness, such as that provoked by the insults or negligence of others. One must also sometimes accept material inconvenience to carry out the injunctions of scriptures, and that unhappiness must also be patiently endured. If one is not tolerant of the insults and abuse of others, nor tolerant of the inconveniences that may arise from following authorized religious scriptures, it is simply foolishness for him to make a whimsical show of tolerating extreme heat, cold and pain and so on, just to impress others. Concerning steadfastness, if one does not control the tongue and genitals, then any other steadfastness is useless. Real charity means to renounce all aggression toward others. If one gives money to charitable causes but at the same time engages in exploitative business enterprises or abusive political tactics, one's charity is worth nothing at all. Austerity means to give up lust and sense gratification and to observe prescribed vows such as Ekadasi; it does not mean inventing whimsical methods of torturing the material body. Real heroism is to conquer one's lower nature. Certainly everyone likes to propagate his own fame as a brilliant person, but everyone is also subject to lust, anger, greed and so forth. Therefore, if one can conquer these lower characteristics generated from the modes of passion and ignorance, one is a greater hero than those who merely destroy their political opponents through intrigue and violence.
One can develop equal vision by giving up jealousy and envy and by recognizing the existence of the soul within every material body. This attitude pleases the Supreme Lord, who then reveals Himself, solidifying forever one's equal vision. Merely describing things that exist does not constitute the last word in the perception of reality. One must also see the true spiritual equality of all living entities and all situations. Truthfulness means that one should speak in a pleasing way so that there will be a beneficial effect. If one becomes attached to pointing out the faults of others in the name of truth, then such faultfinding will not be appreciated by saintly persons. The bona fide spiritual master speaks the truth in such a way that people can elevate themselves to the spiritual platform, and one should learn this art of truthfulness. If one is attached to material things, his body and mind are understood to be always polluted. Cleanliness therefore means to give up material attachment, not merely to frequently rinse one's skin with water. Real renunciation is giving up one's false sense of proprietorship over one's relatives and wife, and not just giving away material objects, while real wealth is to be religious. Sacrifice is the Personality of Godhead Himself, because the performer of sacrifice, to be successful, must absorb his consciousness in the Personality of Godhead and not in temporary, material rewards that may accrue from sacrifice. Real religious remuneration means that one should serve saintly persons who can enlighten one with spiritual knowledge. One may offer remuneration to his spiritual master, who has enlightened him, by distributing the same knowledge to others, thereby pleasing the acarya. Preaching work thus constitutes the highest form of remuneration. By performing the pranayama system of respiratory control, one can easily subdue the mind, and one who can in this way perfectly control the restless mind is the most powerful person.
(SB verse and pur. 11.19.36-39)
“As for the urges of the tongue, we all experience that the tongue wants to eat palatable dishes. Generally we should not allow the tongue to eat according to its choice, but should control the tongue by supplying prasāda. The devotee's attitude is that he will eat only when Kṛṣṇa gives him prasāda. That is the way to control the urge of the tongue. One should take prasāda at scheduled times and should not eat in restaurants or sweetmeat shops simply to satisfy the whims of the tongue or belly. If we stick to the principle of taking only prasāda, the urges of the belly and tongue can be controlled.” (NOI pur.#1)
is not possible to become desireless. The desire for sense gratification must be overcome by the process of purification, but desire for Krsna should be cultivated. It is simply that we have to transfer the desire. There is no question of killing desire, for desire is the constant companion of the living entity. Krsna consciousness is the process by which one purifies his desires; instead of desiring so many things for sense gratification, one simply desires things for the service of Krsna. For example, we may desire palatable food, but instead of preparing foodstuffs for ourselves, we can prepare them for Krsna and offer them to Him. It is not that the action is different, but there is a transfer of consciousness from thinking of acting for my senses to thinking of acting for Krsna. We may prepare nice milk products, vegetables, grains, fruits and other vegetarian dishes for Krsna and then offer them to Him, praying, "This material body is a lump of ignorance and the senses are a network of paths leading to death. Of all the senses the tongue is the most voracious and difficult to control. It is very difficult to conquer the tongue in this world; therefore Sri Krsna has given us this nice prasada, spiritual food, to conquer the tongue. So let us take this prasada to our full satisfaction and glorify Their Lordships Sri Sri Radha and Krsna and in love call for the help of Lord Caitanya and Nityananda Prabhu." In this way our karma is sacrificed, for from the very beginning we are thinking that the food is being offered to Krsna. We should have no personal desires for the food. Krsna is so merciful, however, that he gives us the food to eat. In this way our desire is fulfilled. When one has molded his life in such a way—dovetailing his desires to Krsna’s—then it is to be understood that he has attained perfection in yoga. Simply breathing deeply and doing some exercises is not yoga as far as Bhagavad-gita is concerned. A whole purification of consciousness is required.
Our material disease lies in wanting to satisfy our senses. We have stated before that advancement of civilization means advancement of sense gratification, but bhakti means just the opposite. As long as we are interested in sense gratification, there is no question of bhakti. We have to reduce our tendency for sense gratification and increase our devotional activities. We have also stated that material bondage means accepting one body and creating another. Krsna, through nature, will give us full facility to enjoy our senses. Presently in the Western countries it has become fashionable to run around naked. Therefore nature will give these people an opportunity to stand naked like trees for many years. Why are we receiving different bodies? Because we have different tendencies for sense gratification. We actually have to come to detest sense gratification before our spiritual life begins.
Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare