We here at Chakra are committed to telling you the whole truth. We don't hide anything, although we have our own perspective, which is independent and not dictated to us by the GBC. At CHAKRA, although we are friends with the GBC, we only present our own views. We speak of our own free will.

Go to the “Book-Editing Page”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The editors, after carefully consulting original tapes, manuscripts, and transcripts, restored material the previous editions had lost, obscured, or distorted.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once again the examiner seems to have heard imperfectly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Srila Prabhupada obviously meant ‘acquire’ here. What does it mean to exchange something by bartering something else?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Srila Prabhupada confirmed that a baka is a heron in a conversation with Svarupa Damodara on May 17, 1973.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have carefully listened to the tape, and the NOT is definitely there.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Please carefully read the following two examples of significant restorations to Krsna book that would be lost forever if we followed our critic's advice.

Changes in Krsna
Book Explained

from Dravida dasa

(Note: This article can also be downloaded. Click here.)

Recently the ISKCON Reform Group posted an "in-depth examination" of the revisions in Srila Prabhupada's Krsna book. After comparing chapters 6, 11, 78, and 88 of the 1970 edition to those of the 1996 edition and listening to copies of Srila Prabhupada's original dictation tapes, the unnamed examiner concluded that no revisions were needed beyond fixing "spelling mistakes, obvious errors and missing commas." His overall conclusion was that the revision of Krsna book was a great offense to Srila Prabhupada.

Before we explain the reasoning behind the changes the critic found objectionable, a little history of Krsna book is in order. The first edition appeared in two volumes in 1970, and a slightly revised, three-volume edition appeared in 1974, with many proofreading errors fixed. In 1986 the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust published a one-volume edition as part of the "Great Classics of India" series. This edition contained some revisions by Jayadvaita Swami. The latest edition, published in 1996, contains further revisions by me, Dravida dasa.

Here we are not going to give a detailed explanation of why we revised Krsna book and other books — that you'll find in "Responsible Publishing," available from the North American BBT at 1-800-927-4152, or on the Web at http://oldchakra.com/bookedit; or you can write to Anjana Dasi of the BBT Dept. of Public Affairs at anjana.acbsp@com.bbt.se.

We will, however, cite from "Responsible Publishing" our goal in producing the revised editions: "In these editions, the editors, after carefully consulting original tapes, manuscripts, and transcripts, restored material the previous editions had lost, obscured, or distorted." The following analysis of the critic's in-depth examination will, I trust, confirm that we followed this mandate.

In addition, for the sake of clarity, conciseness, or smoothness, we made other slight changes. Sample: "so a devotee's distressed condition is not the same as the distressed condition of a common karmi" became "so a devotee's distress is not the same as the distress of a common karmi" in the Classics edition. After all, it's the people, not the condition, that are distressed. To me this change is a justified improvement, not an offense. Our readers can decide for themselves.

Our critic has divided his findings into five categories according to how justifiable he feels the changes were. Since he doesn't object much to the changes in the first two categories and gives no examples, we'll begin with the third. Our responses are within double brackets.

EXAMPLES FOR MODIFICATIONS 3

(Modifications not according to tape recording while the original edition also doesn't follow the tape recording exactly.)

TR=tape recording

OE=original edition

RE=revised edition

CHAPTER 6 (sparks and fire)

TR: ... as there are many minute particles of a spark of the original fire. So these sparks can be covered by the influence of maya, but not the original fire, or Krsna.

OE: ... they are minute particles or sparks of the supreme fire, but are not the original fire, or Krsna.

RE: ... they are minute particles or sparks of the original fire. So these sparks can be covered by the influence of maya, but the original fire, Krsna, cannot.

[[RESPONSE: One who looks at this correction in context can easily see that it is 100% justified. The passage reads: "The Mayavada theory holds that the living entity was formerly God but has now become overwhelmed by the influence of maya. Therefore [the Mayavadis] say that presently he is not God, but when the influence of maya is taken away, then he again becomes God. This theory cannot be applied to the minute living entities. The living entities are minute parts and parcels of the Supreme Personality of Godhead; they are minute particles or sparks of the original fire. So these sparks can be covered by the influence of maya, but the original fire, Krsna, cannot. Krsna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, even from the beginning of His appearance in the house of Vasudeva and Devaki."

Srila Prabhupada's whole point here — one that he made many times — is that the Mayavada theory is untenable because Krsna, or God, cannot fall under the influence of His illusory energy at any time although the minute living entities can. This is what Srila Prabhupada was saying in his dictation, but the original editor misunderstood. Therefore the change is 100% justified.]]

CHAPTER 6 (protection for Krsna)

TR: My dear Krsna, may Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is [indistinct] known protect your legs, the lord, who is known as Maniman protect Your thighs [indistinct] Lord Visnu, who is known as [indistinct: Yajna?] may protect Your legs;

OE: My dear Krsna, may the Lord known as Maniman protect Your thighs; may Lord Visnu who is known as Yajna protect Your legs;

RE: My dear Krsna, may the Lord who is known as Aja protect Your legs; may Lord Maniman protect Your knees; may Lorry Yajna protect Your thighs;

[[RESPONSE: The pertinent section of the tape begins "My dear Krsna, may Supreme Personality of Godhead who is unborn protect Your legs." This sentence had been omitted in the OE and became in the RE (following Srila Prabhupada's translation of SB 10.6.22) "My dear Krsna, may the Lord who is known as Aja protect Your legs." Then I saw that in Krsna book we had Yajna protecting the legs, but that would have repeated Aja, so I referred again to SB 10.6.22 and saw that in Srila Prabhupada's translation Yajna protects the thighs (uru). That conflicted with Maniman in Krsna book, and I saw that in 10.6.22 Maniman protects the janu (knees). In Krsna book, Lord Acyuta protecting the arms repeats Visnu protecting the arms, and I saw that in 10.6.22 Acyuta protects the upper waist (kati-tatam). Furthermore, the TR of Krsna book states "May Lord Tarksya protect You from the down side, on the earth," which had become "May Lord Tarksya protect You from below the earth" in the OE. So I fixed that in the RE, making it "May Lord Tarksya protect You on the ground."

Perhaps I could have forgotten about Aja and left this passage as it was, except for fixing Tarksya. I chose to make the changes I did because much had been lost and we had Srila Prabhupada's translation from the 10th Canto to refer to.]]

TR: Lord Acyuta may protect Your arms; Lord Hayagriva may protect Your abdomen; Lord Kesava may protect Your heart; Lord Visnu may protect Your arms;

OE: may Lord Acyuta protect Your arms; may Lord Hayagriva protect Your abdomen; may Lord Kesava protect Your heart; may Lord Visnu protect Your arms;

RE: may Lord Acyuta protect Your upper waist; may Lord Hayagriva protect Your abdomen; may Lord Kesava protect Your heart; may Lord Isa protect Your chest; may Lord Surya protect Your neck; may Lord Visnu protect Your arms;

[[RESPONSE: These changes and additions were made according to Srila Prabhupada's translation of SB 10.6.22-23]]

TR: [...] Lord Visnu carries His conchshell may protect Your left side; [indistinct] Godhead Upendra may protect Your upside and Lord Tarksya may protect you from the downside of the earth;

OE: may Lord Visnu with His conchshell protect Your left side; may the Personality of Godhead Upendra protect You from above, and may Lord Tarksya protect you from below the earth;

RE: may Lord Ajana protect Your left side; may Lord Urugaya with His conchshell protect You on all sides; may the Personality of Godhead Upendra protect You from above; may Lord Tarksya protect You on the ground;

[[RESPONSE: The examiner has imperfectly heard the tape. The TR should read "and Lord Tarksya may protect you from the down side, on the earth." In the OE "from below the earth" is clearly wrong and warrants correction. As explained above, I made the other changes according to Srila Prabhupada's translation of SB 10.6.22-23.]]

CHAPTER 6 (glories of the devotees) TR: ...because salvation like this, [indistinct: because?] what to speak of others, who are affectionate to Krsna in the relationship of mother to [indistinct] Krsna with great love and affection for the Supreme Personality of Godhead Krsna who is the Supersoul of every living entity.

OE: So what can be said of others, who are affectionate to Krsna in the relationship of mother or father? [paragraph] The pure devotees always serve Krsna with great love and affection, for He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the Supersoul of every living entity.

RE: So what can be said of those who are affectionate to Krsna in the relationship of mother, who with great love and affection render service to Him, the Supreme Personality of Godhead and the Supersoul of every living entity?

[[RESPONSE: This change restores the original meaning Srila Prabhupada wanted to convey, which had been lost because of the indistinct tape and the original editor's misunderstanding.]]

CHAPTER 11 (cowherd families arrive in Vrndavana)

TR: In this way, after reaching Vrndavana, the place where everyone lives eternally, very peacefully and happily, they encircled the place by keeping the cars all to[gether]. They began to construct their places of residence.

OE: In this way, after reaching Vrndavana, where everyone lives eternally, very peacefully and happily, they encircled Vrndavana and kept the carts all together.

RE: In this way, after reaching Vrndavana, where everyone lives eternally, very peacefully and happily, they encircled Vrndavana, drew all the carts together in a half circle, and in this way constructed a temporary [!] residence.

[[RESPONSE: It's clear from Srila Prabhupada's translation of SB 10.11.35 that the residence was temporary, created by drawing all the carts together in a half-moon. Since the next section is garbled, in which the original editors have the cowherds constructing their residences after seeing beautiful Vrndavana — when according to the TR (below) it should be Krishna and Balarama seeing beautiful Vrndavana — this one is 100% justified.

New:

In this way, after reaching Vrndavana, where everyone lives eternally, very peacefully and happily, they encircled Vrndavana, drew all the carts together in a half circle, and in this way constructed a temporary residence. When Krsna and Balarama saw the beautiful appearance of Vrndavana, Govardhana Hill and the banks of the river Yamuna, They felt very happy. As They grew up They began talking with Their parents and others in childish language, and thus They gave great pleasure to all the inhabitants of Vrndavana.

Old:

In this way, after reaching Vrndavana, where everyone lives eternally, very peacefully and happily, they encircled Vrndavana and kept the carts all together. After seeing the beautiful appearance of Govardhana on the bank of the River Yamuna, they began to construct their places of residence. While those of the same age were walking together and children were talking with their parents, the inhabitants of Vrndavana felt very happy.]]

TR: Krsna and Balarama, after reaching Vrndavana and seeing the beautiful [indistinct] appearance of Vrndavana, Govardhana on the bank of the river Yamuna, felt very much happy [indistinct: in this way?] this [indistinct: while they're growing?] by Their calves [indistinct] with Their parents and inhabitants of Vrndavana.

OE: After seeing the beautiful appearance of Govardhana on the bank of the river Yamuna, they began to construct their places of residence. While those of the same age were walking together and children were talking with their parents, the inhabitants of Vrndavana felt very happy.

RE: When Krsna and Balarama saw the beautiful appearance of Vrndavana, Govardhana Hill and the banks of the river Yamuna, They felt very happy. As They grew up They began talking with Their parents and others in childish language, and thus They gave great pleasure to all the inhabitants of Vrndavana.

[[This correction is 100% justified because it restores essential meaning that's clear from Srila Prabhupada's translation of SB 10.11.36-37, in conjunction with his Krsna book dictation, which the examiner has unfortunately again misheard:

TR: Krsna and Balarama, after reaching Vrndavana and seeing the beautiful scenic appearance of Vrndavana, Govardhana on the bank of river Yamuna, felt very much happy. This way while They were growing by Their age and talking with Their parents and inhabitants of Vrndavana, everyone residents of Vrndavana felt very much happy...]]

TR: ...everyone [indistinct] of Vrndavana felt very much happy, and in the meantime to [indistinct: precisely were] to take care of the calves. The cowherd boys are trained from the very beginning of their childhood to take care of the cows. First responsibility was to take care of the little calves.

OE: At this time Krsna and Balarama were given charge of the calves. The first responsibility of the cowherd boys was to take care of the little calves. The boys are trained in this from the very beginning of their childhood.

RE: Soon Krsna and Balarama had grown sufficiently to be given charge of the calves. From the very beginning of their childhood, cowherd boys are trained to take care of the cows, and their first responsibility is to take care of the little calves.

[[RESPONSE: Once again the examiner seems to have heard imperfectly. In the TR section above, the part that begins "and in the meantime. . . " should read as follows: "and in the meantime grew sufficiently just to take care of the calves." Here Srila Prabhupada is talking about the training of cowherd boys in general, which begins with their taking care of the calves.]]

TR: So Krsna and Balarama were [indistinct: given?] charge of the calves in the [indistinct] in this way Krsna and Balarama along with other little cowherd boys went into the pasturing ground taking charge of the calves [indistinct] playing with playmates.

OE: So along with other little cowherd boys, Krsna and Balarama went into the pasturing ground and took charge of the calves and played with Their playmates.

RE: So along with the other little cowherd boys, Krsna and Balarama went into the pasturing ground and took charge of the calves, and there They played with Their playmates.

[[RESPONSE: Perhaps our critic could not understand the grammatical problem with the OE version. Without the change you've got not two groups (the cowherd boys plus Krsna and Balarama) but three: the cowherd boys, Krishna and Balarama, and Their playmates. This change is 100% justified.]]

EXAMPLES FOR MODIFICATIONS 4

(Modifications not according to the tape recording while the original edition follows the tape recording. Minimal effects on the message of a sentence.)

All examples are according to the tape recording of chapter 6 and 11 and according to the original edition. The modifications are described in brackets.

... but that does not mean that He was less powerful. ["that" deleted]

[[RESPONSE: This correction was made for conciseness.]]

We further understand from the Vedic information... ["the" deleted]

[[RESPONSE: This correction was made for conciseness and clarity in the 1986 Great Classics of India edition of Krsna book.]]

... tremendous vibration both on the earth and in the sky... ["both" deleted]

[[RESPONSE: First lets look at the TR, OE, and RE.

TR: ...in the sky or down the earth planet or up the earth planet, from all directions...

OE: As she died, screaming, there was a tremendous vibration both on the earth and in the sky, in all directions, and people thought that thunderbolts were falling.

RE: As she died screaming, there was a tremendous vibration on the earth and in the sky, on the upper and lower planets and in all directions, and people thought that thunderbolts were falling.

The original editors left out the phrase "down the earth planet or up the earth planet," which, according to Srila Prabhupada's translation of SB 10.6.12, refers to the upper and lower planets. When that was restored in the RE, the text contained more than two places for the tremendous vibration, and thus "both" had to go.]]

She fell exactly as Vrtrasura did... ["did" added]

[[RESPONSE: The whole sentence reads "She fell exactly as Vrtrasura did when struck by the thunderbolt." The "did" is essential for grammatical reasons.]]

But all such ghosts and evil spirits cannot remain... [the revised edition says: "But no such ghosts and evil spirits can remain..."][[RESPONSE: I made this correction for the sake of smoothness and clarity.]]

... all the cowherd men who went to Mathura... ["went" replaced with "had gone"]

[[RESPONSE: This correction is justified on grammatical grounds.]]

"Where is this good flavor coming from?" ["flavor" replaced with "fragrance"]

[[RESPONSE: An archaic meaning of "flavor" is "fragrance." Srila Prabhupada often used "flavor" when he meant "fragrance"; if he wanted the modern "flavor" he would use "taste." Hence the change here and in all similar passages.]]

... they began to think that it must... ["began to think" replaced with "thought"]

[[RESPONSE: I thinned out some of these "begans" because, especially when used in bunches, they give the impression that action is always beginning but never really happening.]]

While the elderly cowherd man were thus... ["elderly" replaced with "elder"]

[[RESPONSE: "Elderly" has a specific meaning: "approaching old age." Srila Prabhupada almost always meant "older" by "elderly" when referring to gopas and gopis. (At one point he even uses "elderly cows" to differentiate them from the calves.) "Elder," I felt, did the trick. Otherwise we have the image of old and gray, infirm, elderly gopis and gopas.]]

Nanda Maharaja began to smile, hearing about the... ["began to smile, hearing" replaced with "smiled to hear"]

[[RESPONSE: I made this change for the sake of clarity. The smiling is now more immediately connected with the hearing. "Some of the men, however, believed them and told Nanda Maharaja, 'Your child is different from all other children. He just might have done it.' Nanda Maharaja smiled to hear about the extraordinary abilities of his son."]]

Considering all these incidences... ["incidences" replaced with "incidents"]

[[RESPONSE: In modern English the primary meaning of "incidence" is "the rate or range of occurrence or influence of something," as in "a high incidence of flu." In older English "incidence" was used interchangeably with "incident," and this was Srila Prabhupada's common practice. But since his books are edited in modern English, here "incidents" is properly substituted for "incidences." This change was made in the Classics edition. ]]

Near Vrndavana there is Govardhana Hill... ["there" removed]

[[RESPONSE: This change was made in the Classics edition for conciseness.]]

The child of mother Yasoda... [replaced with "Mother Yasoda's child"]

[[RESPONSE: The passage reads: "Mother Yasoda's child, who is the reservoir of pleasure for the demigods and who is the maintainer of saintly persons,..." If you leave "The child of mother Yasoda," the subordinate clause (beginning "who is the reservoir...") could apply to Yasoda.]]

EXAMPLES FOR MODIFICATIONS 5

(Modifications not according to the tape recording while the original edition follows the tape recording. Effects on the meaning of a sentence.)

Text in square brackets has been inserted by the reviser.

CHAPTER 6

Similarly, Putana [had] killed so many babies before meeting Krsna [and she mistook Him to be like them] but now she was accepting the snake that would kill her immediately.

[[RESPONSE: Again, we need to look at the TR.

TR: Similarly, Putana killed so many babies before meeting Krsna. Now she was accepting Krsna as one of the babies, but actually she was accepting the snake who would kill her immediately.

In the revised book the whole passage reads: "When the baby Krsna closed His eyes, Putana took Him on her lap. She did not know that she was holding death personified. If a person mistakes a snake for a rope, he dies. Similarly, Putana had killed so many babies before meeting Krsna, and she mistook Him to be like them, but now she was accepting the snake that would kill her immediately."

The "had" was added for grammatical reasons, and the clause "and she mistook Him to be like them" is equivalent to the dictated "Now she was accepting Krsna as one of the babies," which had been lost in the OE and which is essential to nail down the analogy.]]

... may the Lord of Svetadvipa, Narayana, protect [the core of] Your heart;

[[RESPONSE: In the list we already had "May Lord Kesava protect Your heart." "Core" comes from Srila Prabhupada's translation of SB 10.6.24. It differentiates "citta" from "hrdi."]]

The modifications are described in brackets.

CHAPTER 11

... therefore Krishna might have seen His parents exchange fruits and other things by bartering grains...

[the word "exchange" has been exchanged with "acquire" (There is a difference if you exchange or acquire something...)]

[[RESPONSE: Srila Prabhupada obviously meant "acquire" here. What does it mean to exchange something by bartering something else?]]

The vendor who came to sell fruits saw this and was very much captivated by the beauty of the Lord, so he immediately accepted...

["he" (the vendor) replaced with "she" (Prabhupada does not say in the Krishna-book that the vendor is a women, although we'll know this, when we read the Srimad Bhagavatam. The reviser often uses his understanding of the Bhagavatam to modify the words of Srila Prabhupada.)]

[[RESPONSE: How is the reviser (in this case the editor of the Classics edition) using "his understanding of the Bhagavatam to modify the words of Srila Prabhupada" when it is Srila Prabhupada's translation of this verse (SB 10.11.11) that reveals the female gender of the fruit vendor? Even in his Krsna book dictations Srila Prabhupada revealed the gender. In the dictation for the very next sentence we find "In the meantime SHE saw that the whole basket of fruits has become filled up with jewels," which became "In this meantime, the vendor saw that his whole basket of fruit had become filled with jewels" in the original edition.]]

The child of Mother Yasoda, who is the reservoir of pleasure for the demigods and who is the maintainer of saintly persons, caught hold of the beaks of the great gigantic duck and...

["beaks of the great gigantic duck" replaced with "great gigantic heron by the two halves of his beak" (Again, someone seems to understand the Bhagavatam better. He may write a commentary, but his modifications are not what Srila Prabhupada dictated for the Krishna-book.)]

[[RESPONSE: A bird has one beak, not beaks. Ducks have bills, not beaks. Srila Prabhupada confirmed that a baka is a heron in a conversation with Svarupa Damodara on May 17, 1973:

Svarupa Damodara: There is also a bird, Srila Prabhupada; it is called heron.

Prabhupada: Heron? I do not know.

Svarupa Damodara: Yeah. They have long beaks. They also, they are always with the cows.

Prabhupada: That is baka. We call baka.]]

They were full of anxieties, but they could not turn their faces from the vision of Krsna.

["They were full of anxieties" replaces with "Indeed" (Indeed, no one knows why this has been replaced with "indeed".)]

[[RESPONSE: This was — indeed — an editorial mistake and will be fixed on the reprint. We do not claim that as editors we are infallible. Even when correcting our own errors, we sometimes err. So if while reading Srila Prabhupada's books you see what looks to you like an editorial error, by all means feel free to report it to the BBT by sending it to errors.english.books@com.bbt.se. If in fact it's a mistake, we'll fix it.]]

EXAMINATION OF CHAPTER SEVENTY-EIGHT AND CHAPTER EIGHTY-EIGHT

This are both longer chapters. Only modifications 5 will be described. (Modifications not according to the tape recording while the original edition follows the tape recording. Effects on the meaning of a sentence.)

The modifications are described in brackets.

CHAPTER 78

Some offered Him respectful obeisances, and those who were elderly great sages and brahmanas offered Him blessings by standing up.

["respectful" replaced with "respects by standing up and then paying" and "by" replaced with "after"]

[[RESPONSE: Srila Prabhupada wanted to make the point that the standing up is an important part of the offering of respects; hence "offered Him blessings by standing up." But clearly blessings means more than just standing up. The first part of the respect is standing up, and then there is bowing down or offering blessings. The Sanskrit for SB 10.78.21 says "having stood up [utthaya], they offered obeisances [pranamya] and worshiped Him [arcayan.]" This section is, after all, where Romaharsana is killed for not standing up. The passage reads:

"When Lord Balarama arrived, all the participants in the meeting — great sages, ascetics, brahmanas and learned scholars — immediately arose from their seats and welcomed Him with great honor and respect. Some offered Him respects by standing up and then paying obeisances, and those who were elderly great sages and brahmanas offered Him blessings after standing up. After this formality, Lord Balarama was offered a suitable seat, and everyone present worshiped Him. Everyone in the assembly stood up in the presence of Balarama because they knew Him to be the Supreme Personality of Godhead."]]

The Lord's position is always transcendental, and because He is omnipotent He can act as He likes without being obliged to the material laws and principles.

["to the material laws" replaced with "to follow the material laws"]

[[RESPONSE: I made this correction for the sake of clarity. One can be obliged to a person or obliged to do something, but can one be obliged to a law?]]

CHAPTER 88

... favors received from Lord Siva are not actually beneficial to the conditioned souls, although apparently such facilities seem opulent.

["apparently" replaced with "materially"]

[[RESPONSE:

TR: ...favors received from Lord Siva are not actually beneficial to the conditioned soul, although apparently such environment seems to be materially opulent.

"Apparently" was nipped in the Classics edition to avoid redundancy with "seem." I added "materially" where "apparently" had been because it drives home the point Srila Prabhupada is making and Srila Prabhupada himself used the word (see TR).

The passage now reads: "Unless one is nistraigunya, he cannot get free from material entanglement. In other words, favors received from Lord Siva are not actually beneficial to the conditioned souls, although materially such facilities seem opulent."

To understand why I moved the word "materially," you need only refer to the first sentence of the paragraph: "The devotees of Lord Siva are only opulent in terms of the material qualities." This means that Siva's devotees are truly materially opulent, which would have been contradicted at the end of the paragraph by "such facilities seem materially opulent" had I returned "materially" to its original position. In its present position "materially" conveys the meaning "from the materialistic viewpoint," yielding "although from the materialistic viewpoint such facilities seem opulent," which is exactly what Srila Prabhupada meant.]]

When by the grace of the Lord a devotee becomes freed from all designation, his devotional service is actually naiskarmya.

["becomes" replaced with "is"]

[[RESPONSE: This change in the Classics edition was made for the sake of smoothness. The best choices are "becomes free" or "is freed." The Classics editor chose to retain "freed"; hence the change.]]

Yamaraja advised his followers that persons who have never uttered the holy name of the Lord...

["that persons" replaced with "that only persons" (Little word, big difference.)]

[[RESPONSE: The "only" is essential. As the OE stands, Yamaraja enjoins the Yamadutas to approach those who have never chanted the holy name and to avoid the devotees. That leaves open the possibility that they can approach someone who is not a devotee per se (by ordinary calculation) but who has occasionally chanted the holy name — such as Ajamila! Here Srila Prabhupada is referring to SB 6.3.29, which he translates as follows in the SB itself: "My dear servants, please bring to me ONLY those sinful persons who do not use their tongues to chant the holy name and qualities of Krsna,..."]]

... so a devotee's distressed condition is not the same as the distressed condition of a common karmi.

["distressed condition" replaced with "distress" two times]

[[RESPONSE: This change was made in the Classics edition for the sake of conciseness and clarity.]]

As such, the benedictions derived from demigods are appreciated by the less intelligent class of men.

["appreciated by" replaced with "appreciated only by" (Again: little word, big difference.)]

[[RESPONSE: Again, "only" is essential. A few words earlier we have "...to take blessings from the demigods is less intelligent ..." This is equivalent to "whoever takes blessings from the demigods is less intelligent," = "only those who are less intelligent take (appreciate) blessings from the demigods" = "the benedictions derived from demigods are appreciated only by the less intelligent class of men." The "only" is crucial, in my view.]]

The compassion of Lord Siva was aroused because the demon was offering his flesh into the sacrificial fire. This is natural compassion. Even if a common man sees someone preparing to commit suicide, he will try to save him.

[In the revised edition we read: "The compassion of Lord Siva was aroused NOT because the demon was offering his flesh into the sacrificial fire BUT BECAUSE HE WAS ABOUT TO COMMIT SUICIDE. This is natural compassion. Even if a common man sees someone preparing to commit suicide, HE WILL try to save him."]

[[RESPONSE: First, our critic errs in his OE quote at the end: instead of "he will try to save him," the passage should read "it is his duty to try to save him."

Second, I have carefully listened to the tape, and the NOT is definitely there.

TR: "Compassion of Lord Siva was aroused NOT because the demon was offering his bodily flesh to the sacrificial fire, but it is quite natural — we also, common man, if we see somebody prepared to commit suicide, it is the duty even of a common man to try to save him. That is automatically done; there is no need of appealing to a person."

With the proper transcription, the whole view of this passage changes. It was obvious to me that Prabhupada meant what I put. And the substitution of "he will" for "it is his duty to" follows from "it is quite natural" and "That is automatically done, etc."]]

They cannot show their meritorious power by discovering something which can save man from death...

["discovering" replaced with "inventing"]

[[RESPONSE: You discover something that already exists; you invent something new. By itself, this snippet seems okay with "discovering." But the context is this: "Sometimes, for example, materialistic scientists invent a lethal weapon. The scientific research for such an invention certainly requires a very good brain, but instead of inventing something beneficial to human society they invent something to accelerate death, which is already assured to every man. They cannot show their meritorious power by inventing something which can save man from death; instead they invent weapons which accelerate the process of death."

One may discover nuclear fusion or fission, but when it comes to weapons, you definitely invent them. Throughout this passage Srila Prabhupada had "discover" and its variations for "invent" et. al.]]

Anyone who hears this history with faith and devotion certainly becomes liberated from material entanglement...

["certainly becomes" replaced with "is certainly"]

[[RESPONSE: This change was made in the Classics edition for smoothness.]]

In addition, a whole paragraph (The text starting with "The demons are described as duskrtinas, miscreants...") has been moved and modified although it appears in the original edition at the same place as on the tape recording.

[[RESPONSE: The paragraph was not "moved and modified." Srila Prabhupada repeated several sentences almost verbatim after a break in the tape, and I consolidated the material without losing any of the substance.]]

——————-

Concluding Words

As pointed out in "Responsible Publishing," Srila Prabhupada wanted his books published without mistakes. He also forbade unnecessary changes. While revising, our job as editors was to judge what were mistakes, fix them, and avoid unnecessary changes. No two devotees will perform these services the same way, since editing is not an exact science. Nor are we infallible: we also make mistakes, and when we or others find them we fix them on the reprint. The watchword is always to try to convey the meaning Srila Prabhupada intended in the way he intended, and I believe we've tried to do that in good faith.

Our critic has called for "No revisions!" and magnanimously offers that Srila Prabhupada will forgive us if we humbly return to their pristine state the books we wrongly revised. I don't accept the premise that we've offended Srila Prabhupada by our work, and I'm sure that going back to the old editions would be a dereliction of duty. To see why, please carefully read the following two examples of significant restorations to Krsna book that would be lost forever if we followed our critic's advice.

——————

Chapter 38 (old Ch. 37), "Akrura's Arrival in Vrndavana," page 305 in the Classics edition, page 350 in the new edition:

Old version:

Because Akrura himself was a great devotee of the Lord, while going to Vrndavana he began to PRAISE the Lord. Devotees are always absorbed in thoughts of Krsna, and Akrura was constantly thinking of Lord Krsna's lotus eyes.

He did not know what sort of pious activities he must have performed to gain an opportunity to go see Lord Krsna. Akrura thought that if Krsna willed, he would be able to see Him.

————————

New version:

Because Akrura himself was a great devotee of the Lord, while going to Vrndavana he began to PRAY TO the Lord. Devotees are always absorbed in thoughts of Krsna, and Akrura was constantly thinking of Lord Krsna's lotus eyes.

He did not know what sort of pious activities he must have performed to gain an opportunity to go see Lord Krsna and Lord Balarama in Vrndavana on that day. A pure Vaisnava always thinks himself unfit to serve Krsna. So Akrura began to think within himself that he was unfit for gaining the transcendental opportunity of seeing the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He considered himself as unfit for seeing Krsna as a materialistic person is for understanding the science of God or as a fourth-class person (a sudra) is for studying the Vedas. But then Akrura began to think, "By the grace of Krsna everything is possible, and thus if He likes, I will be able to see Him. Just as a blade of grass floating on the waves of a river may by chance come near the shore and gain shelter, a conditioned soul carried away by the waves of material existence may sometimes be saved by the grace of Krsna." Akrura thus thought that if Krsna willed, he would be able to see Him.

****************

Chapter 47 (old 46), "Delivery of the Message of Krsna to the Gopis," page 389 in the Classics edition, page 444 in the new edition.

Old version:

Certainly it is not possible for any women in the three worlds to achieve this except the gopis.

Uddhava appreciated the exalted position of the gopis and wished to fall down and take the dust of their feet on his head. Yet he dared not ask the gopis to offer the dust from their feet; perhaps they would not be agreeable. Therefore, to have his head smeared with the dust of the gopis' feet without their knowledge, he desired to become only an insignificant clump of grass or herbs in the land of Vrndavana.

————————-

New version:

"...Certainly it is not possible for any women in the three worlds to achieve this except the gopis.

"Therefore I wish to take birth as one of the plants or creepers in Vrndavana, who are so fortunate that the gopis trample them. The gopis have so lovingly served Krsna, Mukunda Himself, the giver of liberation, who is searched after by great sages and saintly persons. For His sake they left everything—their families, their children, their friends, their homes and all worldly connections."

Uddhava appreciated the exalted position of the gopis and wished to fall down and take the dust of their feet on his head. Yet he dared not ask the gopis to offer the dust from their feet; perhaps they would not be agreeable. Therefore, to have his head smeared with the dust of the gopis' feet without their knowledge, he desired to become only an insignificant clump of grass or herbs in the land of Vrndavana.

———————

The restored material is straight from Srila Prabhupada's dictation tapes. You can purchase a set from the Bhaktivedanta Archives and listen to them yourself. Somehow, the original editor dropped these important passages. I restored them so that readers of Krsna book, now and in the future, in all languages, could read Srila Prabhupada's wonderful translation and explanation of these prayers by Akrura and Uddhava. If now you still want to join our critic in his demand for no revisions, so be it. As for me, I will continue to treasure my old set of Krsna books, but I will also continue to regularly read the new edition, confident that it reflects more closely what Srila Prabhupada intended Krsna book to contain.

© CHAKRA 26-Feb-99

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