Dialectical Spiritualism: Carl Jung, Part 10

BY: SUN STAFF - 3.11 2017

Conversations wtih HDG A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, excerpted from  Dialectical Spiritualism: A Vedic View of Western Philosophy.

Carl Gustav Jung (1875 - 1961)

Hayagriva dasa: In one of his last books. The Undiscovered Self, Jung writes: "The meaning and purpose of religion lie in the relationship of the individual to God (Christianity, Judaism, Islam) or to the path of salvation and liberation (Buddhism). From this basic fact all ethics is derived, which without the individual's responsibility before God can be called nothing more than conventional morality."

Srila Prabhupada: First of all, we understand from Bhagavad-gita that no one can approach God without being purified of all sinful reactions. Only one who is standing on the platform of pure goodness can understand God and engage in His service. From Arjuna, we understand that God is par am brahma par am dhama pavitram paramam bhavan (Bg. 10.12). He is the Supreme Brahman, the ultimate, the supreme abode and purifier. Param-brahma indicates the Supreme Brahman. Every living being is Brahman spiritually, but Krsna is the Param-brahma, the Supreme Brahman. He is also param-dhama, the ultimate abode of everything. And pavitram paramam, the purest of the pure. In order to approach the purest of the pure, one must become completely pure, and to this end, morality and ethics are necessary. Therefore in our Krsna consciousness movement, we prohibit illicit sex, meat eating, intoxication, and gambling, the four pillars of sinful life. If we can avoid these, we can remain on the platform of purity. Krsna consciousness is based on this morality, and one who cannot follow these principles falls down from the spiritual platform. Purity is the basic principle of God consciousness, and is essential for the reestablishment of our eternal relationship with God.

Hayagriva dasa: Jung sees atheistic Communism as the greatest threat in the world today. He writes: "The state has taken the place of God; that is why, seen from this angle, the socialist dictatorships are religions, and state slavery is a form of worship."

Srila Prabhupada: Yes, I agree with him. Atheistic Communism has contributed to the degradation of human civilization. The Communists supposedly believe in the equal distribution of wealth. According to our understanding, God is the Father, material nature the mother, and living entities the sons. The sons have a right to live at the cost of the father. The entire universe is the property of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and living entities are being supported by the Supreme Father. However, we should be satisfied with the supplies allotted to us. According to Isopanisad, tena tyaktena bhunjitha (Isopanisad 1). We should be satisfied with our allocation, and not envy another or encroach upon his property. We should not envy the capitalists or the wealthy because everyone is given his allotment by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Therefore everyone should be satisfied with what he receives. On the other hand, no one should exploit others. One may be born in a wealthy family, but he should not interfere with the rights of others. Whether one is rich or poor, he should be God conscious, accept God's arrangement, and serve God to his fullest. This is the philosophy of Srimad Bhagavatam, and it is confirmed by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. We should be content with our allocations from God, and concern ourselves with advancing in Krsna consciousness. If we become envious of the rich, we will be tempted to encroach upon their allotment, and in this way we are diverted from our service to the Lord. The main point is that everyone, rich or poor, should engage in God's service. If everyone does so, there will be real peace in the world.

Hayagriva dasa: In the socialist state, the goals of religion are turned into worldly promises of bread, "the just distribution of material goods, universal prosperity in the future, and shorter working hours."

Srila Prabhupada: This is because they have no understanding of spiritual life, nor can they understand that the person within the body is eternal and spiritual. Therefore they recommend immediate sense gratification.

Hayagriva dasa: Jung believed, however, that Marxism cannot possibly replace religion. "A natural function which has existed from the beginning...cannot be disposed of with rationalistic and so-called enlightened criticism."

Srila Prabhupada: The Communists are concerned with adjusting material things that can never be adjusted. They imagine that they can solve problems, but ultimately their plans will fail. The Communists do not understand what religion is. It is not possible to avoid religion. Everything has a particular characteristic. Salt is salty, sugar is sweet, and chili is hot and pungent. These are intrinsic characteristics. Similarly, the living entity has an intrinsic quality. His characteristic is to render service, be he a Communist, a theist, a capitalist, or whatever. In all countries, people are working and rendering service to their respective governments — be they capitalists or Communists — and the people are not profiting. Therefore we say that if people follow the footsteps of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu by serving Krsna, they will be happy. In the material world, people are rendering service, and they are not happy doing so because their service is actually meant for Krsna. Therefore, for the sake of happiness, people should individually and collectively render service to Krsna. When that service is misplaced, we are never happy. Both Communists and capitalists are saying, "Render service to me," but Krsna says, sarva-dharman parityajya (Bg. 18.66). "Just render Me service, and I will free you from all sinful reactions."

Hayagriva dasa: Jung feels that materialistic capitalism cannot possibly defeat a pseudo-religion like Marxism. The only solution is to adopt a nonmaterialistic religion. "The antidote should in this case be an equally potent faith of a different and nonmaterialistic kind "

Srila Prabhupada: That religion is this Krsna consciousness movement. Krsna has nothing to do with any materialistic "ism," and this movement is directly connected with Krsna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. God demands complete surrender, and we are teaching, "You are servants, but your service is being wrongly placed. Therefore you are not happy. Just render service to Krsna, and you will find happiness." We neither support Communism nor capitalism, nor do we advocate the adoption of pseudo religions. We are for Krsna only.

Hayagriva dasa: Jung laments the absence of a potent nonmaterialistic faith in the West that "could block the progress of a fanatical ideology" like Marxism. He sees mankind as desperately in need of a religion that has immediate meaning.

Srila Prabhupada: That nonmaterial religion which is above everything — Marxism and capitalism — is this Krsna consciousness movement. If we cultivate Krsna consciousness, we will transcend sinful reactions and make spiritual progress. Janma karma ca me divyam (Bg. 4.9). Krsna says that just by knowing of His transcendental appearance and pastimes, we will not take birth in this material world again.