2. Everyone is a servant of God
3. Everyone has an eternal relationship with God
4. The primary duty of everyone is Service to God
5. The goal of human life is to develop love of God.
Dr. Patel: Mohammedanism is not Vaishnavism.
(Room conversation. Tehran, 14/03/75)
1) The knowledge that Allah ordered the Holy Prophet Muhammad to conceal from others and keep for himself
2) The knowledge that Allah allowed him to choose whether or not to conceal or reveal to others
3) The knowledge that Allah ordered the Apostle to communicate to all members of his ummah (community). (Geo Widengren. Muhammad, the Apostle of
God, and His Ascension. Uppsala, 1955, p. 108)
In this way, the Holy Prophet Muhammad got part of the unlimited spiritual knowledge and at the same time was ordered by Allah to conceal some parts of this knowledge.
Thus from statements of the Holy Prophet and from his life, we can understand that he withheld some confidential knowledge about the Supreme Lord. Therefore, Srila Prabhupada said that Islam is simplified Vaishnavism. By these words Srila Prabhupada had no intention to discredit the Islamic religion. He actually had all respect for Islam as we will see later on. That is why he said that Islam is also Vaishnavism. But what Srila Prabhupada meant is that not all aspects of Vaishnava philosophy were revealed by the Holy Prophet Muhammad, as he himself states.
Srila Prabhupada: That's good.
Yoga student: And they call their religion Islam, which means submission.
Srila Prabhupada: That's very good.
Yoga student: The Muslim is he who submits.
(Room conversation. Tehran, 14/03/75)
"Now, I'm American."
"Who is your president?'
"I do not know."
What is this nonsense American? Would you like to hear from him, "I do not know who is my president." Similarly, a human being professing some certain type of religion, but if you ask him, "What is God?"
Religion must be in relationship with God; any religion. But ask him, "What is God?" No answer. But religion means yato bhaktir adhoksaje — by practising it, one becomes a devotee of the Lord. That is religion, First-class religion. (Lecture on Srimad Bhagavatam. 9/01/74)
"War is permissible in self-defence, and under well-defined limits. When undertaken, it must be pushed with vigour, but not relentlessly, but only to restore peace and freedom for the worship of Allah. In any case, strict limits must not be transgressed: women, children, old and infirm men should not be molested, nor trees and crops cut down, nor peace withheld when the enemy comes to terms." (Abdullah Yusuf Ali, The Holy Qur-an, Al-Madinah, 1411H, p. 79)
In conclusion, the Holy Prophet Muhammad said: "The most excellent Jihad is the uttering of truth in the presence of an unjust ruler." (Mishkat, 17)
(Abdullah Al-Mamun Al-Suhrawardy, The sayings of Muhammad, London, 1905, p. 27)
2) enthusiastic and incessant activities, involving the sacrifice of one's life, or wealth, in the service of Allah. Mere brutal fighting is opposed to the whole spirit of Jihad, while the sincere scholar's pen or the preacher's voice or the wealthy man's contributions may be the most valuable forms of Jihad. This is the inner, esoteric meaning of the term Jihad, Holy War.
Here Srila Prabhupada explains the universal law of the Supreme Lord. Whenever religious principles deteriorated to the influence of the illusory material energy, God sent some of His confidential servants like Jesus Christ or Hazrat Muhammad to inform people of their real position as eternal servitors of God. In this way, Moses and Jesus were sent to Jews and Hazrat Muhammad to Arabs to re-establish the eternal religious principles that everyone is a servant of God and should serve Him with love and devotion. Each messenger of God accepts the authority of the previous messengers and scriptures.
"It is not for us to make any distinction between one and another of Allah's Messengers: we must honour them all equally, though we know that Allah in His wisdom sent them with different kinds of missions and gave them different degrees of rank." (Abdullah Yusuf Ali, The Holy Qur-an, Al-Madinah, 1411 H, p. 132)
"We (Allah) have revealed it, a Lecture (Qur'an) in Arabic, that you (Muhammad) may understand."
2) Everyone is the servant of God
3) We must serve and love God
4) And to do so, we must chant His holy name.
This is the universal message of God contained in all scriptures.
"Those Messengers we endowed with gifts, some above others: to some of them Allah spoke; others He raised to degrees (of honour)."
"Allah-Taala sent one black coloured nabi (one who delivers the message of God) whose name is not mentioned in the Qur'an." (Tafsire Madarek, Juj 2, Egypt, p. 65)
"Say you: 'We believe in Allah, and the revelation given to us, to Abraham, Ismail, Isaac, Jacob, to the Tribes, and that given to Moses and Jesus, and that given to (all) the Prophets from their Lord: we make no difference between one and another of them: and we submit to Allah.'"
1) the one universal God
2) the message that has come to us through the Holy Prophet Muhammad and the signs (ayats) interpreted by him
3) the messages delivered by other prophets in the past. These are mentioned in three groups:
(1) Abraham, Ismail, Isaac, Jacob, and the Tribes; of these Abraham apparently had a scripture
(2) Moses and Jesus, who each left a scripture
(3) other scriptures, prophets, or messengers of God, not specifically mentioned in the Holy Qur'an. Their message in essence was one, and that is the basis of Islam.
"In India one black coloured nabi advented and his name was Kahan."
Another incident involving Chaitanya Mahaprabhu took place when the Muslim King of Bengal, Ala' uddin Saiyad Hussain Shah (1498-1511), heard of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu's influence in attracting innumerable people. He said: "Such a person, who is followed by so many people without giving them charity, must be a prophet. I can surely understand this fact."
"What have I to read?'
The angel said:
"Read: In the name of your Lord Who created,
Created man from a clot.
Read: Your Lord is Most Bountiful,
Who taught by the pen,
Taught man that which he knew not."
(The Qur'an 96.1-5)
"While the basic principles of Allah's Law remain the same; its form, expression and application have varied from time to time, e. g., from Moses to Jesus, and from Jesus to Muhammad." (The Holy Qur-an. The Presidency of Islamic Researchers, Al-Madinah Al-Munawarah, 1410 H., p. 1939)
Atreya Rishi: God would not come to this earth.
Srila Prabhupada: God cannot speak? God cannot come. A very big man, he can come, but He (God) cannot speak?
Atreya Rishi: They agree. He can speak and He can send representatives.
Srila Prabhupada: Because He has spoken to Muhammad, and Muhammad has come, he is speaking the same thing. There is no need of God's coming. If
Muhammad is speaking on behalf of God, then that is all right. There is no need of God's coming. This is parampara.
(Morning walk. Tehran, 12/08/76)
Srila Prabhupada: Just like in your country there is the Bible or any other scripture. We have got the Vedas. The Muslims, they have got the Qur'an. These scriptures can help also because they are also authority. But you will find that one scripture is differing from other scriptures in some details. Of course, on average there is no difference. (Lecture, 25/04/69)
Srila Prabhupada: The Muslims accept the Qur'an. What is the purpose for all these books of knowledge? They are to train us to understand our position as pure soul. Their purpose is to restrict bodily activities by certain rules and regulations, and these rules and regulations are known as codes of morality. (Beyond Birth and Death. Ch. 1)
Srila Prabhupada: According to the climate, according to the population, according to the country, there are different books of knowledge. Just like in India the books of knowledge are accepted as the Vedas, Vedic knowledge. In your European, American countries the accepted books of knowledge are the Old Testament and the New Testament. Similarly, the book of knowledge amongst the Muslims, (which) they have accepted is the Qur'an. Actually, they are all books of knowledge; undoubtedly. There is no doubt about it. But what are these books of knowledge? Religious scriptures! Religious scriptures are meant for training you to (understand) the conception of life that you are a pure soul, nothing more. They restrict your bodily activities under certain conditions. That is called morality. (Lecture on Bhagavad-gita, 25/03/66)
Srila Prabhupada: This message (of God) may also be found in the Bhagavad-gita and other Vedic literatures, in the Bible and the Qur'an — in any bona fide scripture — or it may be heard from a realised soul. (On the Way to Krishna, Ch. 3)
Srila Prabhupada: According to the Vedic scriptures, if one can support his stand by quoting from the Vedas, his argument is perfect. Similarly, when the Muslims support their stand with quotations from the Qur'an, their arguments are also authorised. (Chaitanya-charitamrita. Adi-lila, 7.155p)
Srila Prabhupada: Yes. Everyone is fallen. They are simply amending and concocting. That is not good. Why should they amend? (Room conversation. Tehran, 14/03/75)
"Mankind was one single nation." Also stated in the sura "Yunus," or "Jonah" (10.19): "Mankind was but one nation, but differed (later)."
2. Chanting the holy name and glories of the Lord
3. Remembering the Lord
4. Serving the Lord
5. Worshipping the Lord
6. Praying to the Lord
7. Obeying the orders of the Lord
8. Maintaining friendship with the Lord
9. Surrendering everything unto Him.
"When My servants question you concerning Me, then surely I am near. I answer the prayer of the suppliant when he cries unto Me. So let them hear My call and let them trust in Me, in order that they may be led aright." (2.186)
"So chant the name of your Tremendous Lord." (69.52) "Call upon Allah (Almighty), or call upon Rahman (Compassionate), by whatever name you call upon Him (it is well). For to Him belong the most beautiful names." (17.110)
"Those who believe and whose hearts find rest in the remembrance of Allah: truly in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find rest!" (13.28) "Therefore remember Me, I (Allah) will remember you. Give thanks to Me and reject not Me." (2.152)
"Behold! Allah is my Lord and your Lord. So serve Him. That is the right path." (19.36)
"O mankind! Worship your Lord, Who has created you and those before you so that you may ward off (evil)." (2.21)
"Seek help in patience and prayers. Truly, it is hard except for the humble-minded." (2.45)
"Obey Allah and the messenger, that you may find mercy." (3.132)
"Those who take Allah, His messenger and the believers for friends, behold! The party of Allah are victorious." (5.56)
"Behold! Religion for Allah is surrender (to His will and guidance)." (3.19)
Dr. Patel: The only difference is that Muslims are trying to worship niranjana, nirakara (formless), and we...
Srila Prabhupada: No, no, not nirakara. That is not...
Dr. Patel: Even Christianity considers His akara (form). God has form.
Srila Prabhupada: No, Muhammad also has got... Chaitanya Mahaprabhu argued from the Qur'an and proved there is krishna-bhakti (love of God). He proved this with the Pathans. Yes. (Morning walk. Bombay, 30/09/75)
Yoga student: Yes. They follow. It's essentially the same practice as the...
Prabhupada: No, you cannot amend the words of Muhammad if you are a true Musalman. (Room conversation. Tehran, 14/03/75)
Here Srila Prabhupada explains that the Holy Prophet Muhammad is a powerful devotee of the Supreme Lord. He has done tremendous service on behalf of the Lord on the surface of this globe.
"Prohibited to you (for marriage) are: your mothers, daughters and sisters."
Srila Prabhupada: That's all right. At least he could hear Him. So that is possible. It's not necessary that one has to see Him, but one can hear Him. Now, you have said that Muhammad heard Him, so God can speak. So you can hear. So where is the objection?
Prithu-putra: No objection.
(Here Srila Prabhupada seems to refer to the Bhagavata Purana's description of planets) (Room conversation. Bhuvaneshwar, 30/01/77)
Gardens as hospitable homes (32.19); to dwell in beautiful mansions in eternal gardens (9.72); lofty mansions one above another have been built (39.20). Among gardens under which ariver always flows (3.15) are an abundance of fruits from which you shall eat (43.73). Fruits of every kind will be easy to reach (55.54), like dates, pomegranates (55.68); you shall eat with honour and dignity (37.42) in shades cool and ever-deepening (4.57) reclining on carpets whose inner linings are of rich brocade (55.54). You will sit on couches encrusted with gold and precious stones (56.15). Amid gardens and fountains of clear, flowing water, in peace and security (15.45) rivers of milk, of which the taste never changes, rivers of wine, a joy to those who drink, rivers of honey, pure and clear are flowing (47.15). Among them are talk trees with flowers piled one above another (56.29), lote trees that have no thorns (56.28). Cushions set in rows (88.15). With no excessive heat or cold (76.13). Brothers will joyfully face each other on raised couches, beside them companions of equal age (38.92). With no sense of fatigue and never asked to leave (15.48). Free from headiness suffering and intoxication (37.47) they will be adorned with bracelets of gold and pearls (22.23), and they will wear green garments of fine silk and heavy brocade, reclining on raised thrones (18.31). The righteous will receive entertainment from Allah because from Allah comes bliss (3.198). Served by youths of perpetual freshness (56.17), round will be passed to them dishes and goblets of gold (43.71) to drink from clear-flowing fountains (37.45) crystal white nectar of a delicious taste (37.46). Reclining on green cushions and rich carpets of beauty (55.76) beside them will be chaste women, restraining their glances with big eyes of wonder and beauty (37.48). Gardens wherein delights endure (9.21). among them fair maidens good and beautiful (55.20) whom no man or jinn (the evil spirit) has ever touched (55.74). We made them virgin pure, full of love for their mates of equal age (56.36-37). Brothers would question one another; one will say: "I had an intimate companion on earth who used to say, 'Do you really believe when we die and become dust and bones, shall we indeed receive rewards and punishment?"* He said: "Would you like to look down?" He looked down and saw his friend in the midst of the hell fire (37.50-55)."
"Animals of the chase are forbidden while you are in the Sacred Precincts or in the state of pilgrimage." (The Qur'an 5.1)
(1) in the Sacred Preciacts, Mecca or
(2) in the special pilgrimage garb (ihram).
It is also explained in the sura "AI-Ma 'ida" that:
So We gave him the good news of forbearing son.
Then, when (his son) was old enough to work with him, (Ibrahim) said: 'O my dear son, I have seen in a dream that I must sacrifice you. Now see what is your view!' (The son) said: 'O my father! Do as you are commanded. You will find me, if Allah so wills one of the steadfast.'
So when they both submitted (to Allah), and he had laid him prostrate on his forehead (for sacrifice),
We called out to him, 'O Ibrahim!
You have already fulfilled the dream!' Thus indeed do We reward those who do right.
For this was a clear test.
Then we ransomed him with a tremendous victim.
And We left for him among generations (to come) in later times:
'Peace and salutation to Ibrahim!"'
And We produce therein gardens of the date-palm and grapes, and We have caused springs of water to gush forth therein.
That they may eat of the fruit thereof, and their hands made it not. Will they not, then, give thanks?" (36.33-35)
It is explained in the Hadith (traditions): Once the Prophet passed by certain people who were shooting arrows at a ram, and hated that, saying, "Maim not the brute beasts."
"Ta bayabin dar bahishte aden ja, shajkate banumaye ba khalke Khuda"—
They said: 'Do you make game of us?'
He answered: 'Allah forbid that I should be among the foolish!'
They said: 'Pray for us unto your Lord that He make clear to us what (cow) she is.'
(Moses) answered: 'He says, that the cow should be neither too old nor too young, but of middling age; now do what you are commanded!'
They said: 'Pray for us unto your Lord that He make clear to us of what color she is.'
(Moses) answered: 'He says, that she is a yellow cow. Bright is her color; gladdening beholders.'
They said: 'Pray for us unto your Lord that He make clear to us what (cow) she is. To us are all cows alike; if Allah wills, we may led aright.'
(Moses) answered: 'He says, that she is a cow not trained to till the soil or water the fields; whole and without a mark.'
They said: 'Now has you brought the truth.' Then they sacrificed her; though they scarcely did it."
On page 18, the Imam Saheb has repeated the saying of the Holy Prophet Muhammad as under:
"There is no one who kills even a sparrow or anything smaller, without its deserving it, but God will question him about it."
"He who takes pity even on a sparrow and spares its life, Allah will be merciful on him on the day of Judgment."
Srila Prabhupada: So, there the materialists also find. Yoga student: That is the material aspect, absolutely.
Srila Prabhupada: Therefore in the Islamic religion, the form is rejected because it will come to that. As soon as they think of form, they think of this material form, beautiful face of woman. That is degradation. Therefore, we are strict not to conceive material form. That is Vedic conception. Apa.ii-padah javano grahita: "He has no legs and no hands." This means denying the form. And next the Vedas say, javano grahita: "He can accept whatever you offer to Him." That means God has no material form, but He has form; otherwise, how can He accept? How can He understand my love? So, therefore, in original Islam the form is not accepted. So that is Vedic description, form and formless. Formless means no material form, and form means spiritual form, simultaneously.
Yoga student: God is seen in the form of the saints.
Nobody can deny the fact that Allah has spiritual eyes, ears, mouth, face and hands because these bodily limbs of Allah are explicitly mentioned in the Holy Qur'an.
More than this, the Holy Qur'an mentions the sublime image of Allah, His realm and His throne on which He sits. If Allah has spiritual eyes, ears, mouth, face and hands, how can we deny that He has spiritual form? First of all, how can His limbs exist separately and, secondly, if Allah is the source of everything and if all things belong to Him, how is it possible that He does not have form? If He has all things, this means He has form also. Otherwise, He would not be complete — something would be missing. Of course, He does not have a form which consists of material elements and deteriorates, like the body we presently have. He has spiritual form which consists of pure spirit. His form is not ordinary, but supreme, eternal, blissful, transcendental and beyond our imagination and description.
The Holy Qur'an (75.22-23) states, "Some faces that day, will beam (in brightness and beauty), Looking towards their Lord."
The meaning of these ayats is that when righteous people come to Allah, they will be able to see their Lord and their faces will beam bright and be full of beauty at the bliss of seeing their Lord. Thus Allah is not an abstract power or energy, but the supreme living being who has His supreme form. For righteous people will be able to see Him on the Day of Judgment.
Hazrat Ali replied: "I would not worship Allah if I have not seen Him!" (Qur'ana dair 101 sual, Baki, 1992, p. 13)
Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama Hare Hare
Srila Prabhupada: Yes. By chanting.
Lady: ...by chanting of a worldly name, tuned into a prayer... Srila Prabhupada: This is not a worldly name. Why do you make that mistake? God's name is not worldly. Lady: Because if you really know the tuning of God...
Srila Prabhupada: Do you think Allah is a worldly name?
Srila Prabhupada: That's all right, you recognize it. Allah is not a worldly name. It is given by the authority, Muhammad. So you have to chant it, if you know God.
Srila Prabhupada: Why do you say that he didn't mean?
Srila Prabhupada: That is your say. Muhammad did not say, "What I say, I did not mean."
Lady: No, the name of God. He didn't mean Allah.
Srila Prabhupada: You say. Who cares for your word? Muhammad said this is the name of God. We have to accept, that's all.
Lady: So why...?
Srila Prabhupada: You cannot say, "He didn't mean." You are not a private secretary of Muhammad, (laughter)
Lady: So then how do they say that the name of God rests in God...
Srila Prabhupada: No, these things are not accepted.
Lady: Was before God...
Srila Prabhupada: Don't talk childish.
Lady: Was God.
Srila Prabhupada: (Whatever) Muhammad said that is authority. That we accept. We accept Muhammad as the representative of God. Whatever he says, we accept; that's all. What you mean, that is your business. But he is the authority; he said, "This is the name of God. You chant, you pray." Allah of God. That's all. That is authority. (Room conversation. Tehran, 14/03/75)
Yoga student: There is a tradition, and there's a body of forty traditions, which are called the sacred traditions, one of which says that these are the words of God as enunciated through Muhammad. One of them says, "The more you strive towards Me, the more you love Me, the closer I come to you." Srila Prabhupada: Oh, that's it. Then the ultimate goal is how to love God. Yoga student: Yes.