(Kadamba Kanana Swami, 19 December 2011, Cape Town, South Africa, Lecture)

When we come to the spiritual platform, we think life is only love and only peace, that there is only one feeling, one emotion… LOVE-and-PEACE.

But no, no, no… true spiritual emotions are not only lovey-dovey, it is also YOU RASCAL! We know one of Prabhupada’s favourite words was rascal. In fact, I didn’t even know the word before I started reading Prabhupada’s books. I learnt the word from Prabhupada. It may even be an outdated word but in Iskcon, it is a bit of an endearing word.

When people were doing all kinds of things, Prabhupada was ready to call them rascals! The whole world is engaging in all kinds of abominable activities and in a modern way of thinking, we start to think of them more and more like victims – a victim of the circumstance. But Prabhupada would say rascal because it would make people responsible… because you know what you are doing… and you know what you supposed to do… you know it’s wrong… and still doing it… rascal!

So the paramahamsa (elevated) platform means to take responsibility to rearrange one’s life.

“But ohhh, so much work,” one may say, then lazy rascal – too lazy to rearrange your life!

“Well, it’s so difficult, it takes so much energy. I mean I’m trying…” No, trying is not good enough, you must DO IT. Trying basically means that you are not doing it and that means RASCAL!

Like that, Prabhupada had this refreshing spirit of being rebellious and had a fighting spirit. Not just being defeated, “Ohhh, it’s so difficult,” and we make it more difficult than it already is so that we do not have to do anything about it and everybody will say, “Well, that’s very reasonable. You have presented so many points there and we understand.” Because everyone, at the back of their mind, is thinking that tomorrow it may be my turn. This is a pact that the rascals have with each other!

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