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Free will Vs Destiny

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Hare Krishna Prabhus.


Pragosh Prabhuji provided these quotes on Freewill and Destiny, thought you might like to see to get inspired!



Regarding free will and pre-destination, yes, materially everything is decided. Spiritually you can make advancement despite all material destiny. Materially you cannot change things as they are but spiritually it is possible. >>> Ref. VedaBase => Letter to: Sukadeva: -- Bombay 24 November, 1974

Swedish man (3): Is there free will?


Prabhupada: Yes, yes. Just like you are sitting here. If you don't like, you can go away. That's your free will. There is free will. Because we are part and parcel of God, God is completely free to do anything. And because we are part and parcel of God, therefore we have got minute quantity of freedom. Just like a drop of ocean water, it is also salty, but the quantity of salt in that drop is not equal to the salt in the ocean. Similarly, you have got a little quantity of freedom, but not as freedom as God has got. That is not possible. You are subordinate. Your freedom is subordinate to God's freedom. Therefore if you misuse your freedom, then you become punishable. The government gives you freedom, but if you misuse your freedom, if you violate the laws, then you are criminal. Yes? >>> Ref. VedaBase => Bhagavad-gita 7.1-3 -- Stockholm, September 10, 1973

Devotee: Srila Prabhupada? Why God gave to man free will if He knew the man would fall down in the material world?

Prabhupada: If you have no free will, then you are a stone. The stone has no free will. You want to be stone? Then you must be, must have free will. But don't misuse your free will. But don't try to become stone. That is not life. >>> Ref. VedaBase => Bhagavad-gita 15.15 -- August 5, 1976, New Mayapur (French farm)

Syamasundara: He's using the sense of free will in two senses. Just like I would drive down the right side of the road because I know that it's the law. So I want to obey the law. And then the other sense would be I want to drive down the right side of the street in order not to harm anyone and for so many other reasons, a higher type of use of free will. One is automatic, one is more thoughtful.


Prabhupada: So automatic cooperation is bhakti, and forced cooperation is karma. That is the... It looks the same thing. Karmis and the bhaktas are working... Just like we are working in the same way. Karmi is typing and a bhakta is typing. It looks the same thing, but karmi is typing under force. His master has ordered, "You work it; otherwise you won't get salary." And a bhakta is typing for pleasing Krsna and for glorifying Krsna. So the typing looks the same, but the bhakta's typing and a karmi's typing different.


Syamasundara: And he says that freedom of the will is relative, that in our higher level it becomes clear that the lower stage was actually determined, predetermined or directed by external forces.


Prabhupada: Yes. That is called karma-phala. That we have explained. Karmana daiva-netrena [sB 3.31.1]. Unless superior superintendence he is working, and as a result of his work, he is getting a particular type of body for enjoyment or suffering.


Syamasundara: Even though he thinks he's free. He thinks he's free.


Prabhupada: Yes. That is also explained in the Bhagavad-gita.


prakrteh kriyamanani

gunaih karmani sarvasah


kartaham iti manyate

[bg. 3.27]


He is being forced by the laws of nature, but he is thinking, "I am doing this." That is ahankara-vimudhatma. He's a rascal. >>> Ref. VedaBase => The Evolutionists: Thomas Huxley, Henri Bergson, and Samuel Alexander

Hayagriva: Why can't we have free will and at the same time...


Prabhupada: Free will means...


Hayagriva: ...infallible judgment?


Prabhupada: Free will means that you can act wrongly. That is free will. Unless there is chance of doing wrong or right, there is no question of free will. Where is free will then? If I act only one sided, that means I have no free will. Because we act sometimes wrongly, that means free will.


Hayagriva: A man may know better but still act wrongly.


Prabhupada: Yes.


Hayagriva: Yes.


Prabhupada: But that is free will. He misuses his. Just like a thief, he knows that his stealing, it is bad, but still he does it. That is free will. He cannot check his greediness, so in spite of his knowing that he is doing wrong thing -- he will be punished, he knows; he has seen another thief, he was punished, he was put into prison -- everything he knows, but still he steals. Why? Misuse of free will. Unless there is misuse of free will, there is no question of free will.


Hayagriva: In a sense he says that when one knows God he knows everything else, because...


Prabhupada: Yes. If he knows God and follows the instruction of God then he is right, and as soon as he goes against the instruction of God, then he is wrong. That is stated in the Bhagavad-gita: "Now I have given you all instruction. It is up to you to accept or reject." Yathecchasi tatha kuru [bg. 18.63]. That is free will. So now it depends on me whether I shall act according to the instruction of God or I shall act according to my whims, according to my sensual inclinations. >> Ref. VedaBase => Rene Descartes

Hayagriva: This is the continuation of Mill. He writes, "Limited as, on this showing, the Divine power must be, by inscrutable and insurmountable obstacles due to the existence of evil." Mill concludes that the existence of evil in the universe, or what he considers to be evil, pain and death, excludes the existence of an omnipotent God. He sees man in a position to aid the intentions of providence by surmounting his evil instincts. So God is not all-powerful, infinite in His power. If He were, there would be no evil, according to Mill.


Prabhupada: No. God, evil is created by God undoubtedly, but the, it was necessary on account of the human being as, misuse of his free will. God gives him good direction but when he is disobedient, then naturally the evil power is there to punish him. Therefore the evil is not created by God but still it is created. It is necessary. Just like the government constructs the prison house. So this prison house creation is not the government's intention. Government wants that university is sufficient, people may be educated and highly enlightened, but because some, not all, misuses the independence, little independence, he creates evil circumstances, and he is compulsorily put into the prison house. Similarly, we suffer on account of our own evil activities but God, being Supreme, He punishes us for our evil activities. For God there isn't... When we are under the protection of God, there is nothing evil, only good thing. There is no evil. So God does not create evil but man's evil activities obliges God to create an evil situation. >>> Ref. VedaBase => John Stuart Mill

Paramahamsa: But ultimately if we come to Krsna, there's no return. But nevertheless, Jagai, and..., the two gatekeepers, they returned?


Prabhupada: There is return, that is voluntary. Return there is.


Paramahamsa: If we want.


Prabhupada: Yes.


Paramahamsa: So we can come to the spiritual world and return?


Prabhupada: Yes.


Paramahamsa: Fall down?


Prabhupada: Yes. As soon as we try, "Oh, this material world is very nice,Yes," Krsna says, "yes, you go." Just like nobody is interested in Krsna consciousness. Do you think everyone is interested? So. They want to enjoy this material world. Otherwise what is the meaning of free will? Every living entity has got a little free will. And Krsna is so kind, He gives him opportunity, "All right, you enjoy like this." Just like some of our students, Krsna conscious, sometimes go away, again come back. It is free will, not stereotyped. Just like one goes to the prisonhouse, not that government welcomes, "Come on. We have got prisonhouse. Come here, come here." He goes out of his free will; again comes out, again goes. Like that. Krsna-bahirmukha hana bhoga vancha kare, nikata-stha maya tare japatiya dhare (Prema-vivarta). The police is there. Just like the police car was there. We have nothing to do with it. But if you do anything criminal, immediately you will be arrested, under police custody. The maya may be there, but maya captures him who is not a devotee of Krsna. That's all. Therefore, mam eva ye prapadyante mayam etam taranti te: "Anyone who surrenders unto Me, maya does not interfere anymore."

>>> Ref. VedaBase => Morning Walk At Cheviot Hills Golf Course -- May 13, 1973, Los Angeles

Hrdayananda: So Prabhupada, if some people say, "Well, I have no free will," that means that they are actually lazy.


Prabhupada: Yes. You have got free will, but must utilize it properly. That is free will. Free will means to utilize it properly. That is free will.


Svarupa Damodara: So people... Sometimes Krsna interferes in the free will?


Prabhupada: Ah?


Svarupa Damodara: Our free will.


Prabhupada: Yes.


Svarupa Damodara: God interferes.


Prabhupada: Yes. That is Krsna's special favor. Because by your free will you are going to hell. If Krsna interferes, that is Krsna's special favor. Just like a child is going to touch fire by free will, and father, "Eh, don't do it." That is his special favor. >>> Ref. VedaBase => Morning Walk -- December 4, 1973, Los Angeles





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