1. Don’t think these boys’ life is being spoiled

    Referring to gurukula boys in Mayapur, Srila Prabhupada said:

    So these little boys who are taking to Krsna consciousness, just like Prahlada Maharaja, maha-bhagavata, he is also playing the part of a child, immediately falling down; so these children who are here, even imitation, it will not go in vain. Krsna is so kind, as it is said here, sva-pada-mule-patitam tam arbhakam. Although they are innocent children, but when they're offering obeisances to Radha-Madhava it is of value, "Yes, very good." It is going to their credit. It is not bad. Some may think that these boys are brought here and their life is being spoiled; they are not being educated in the modern way; they're simply chanting, dancing and offering… But that is the real education. Tan manye adhitam uttamam, Prahlada Maharaja. Sravanam kirtanam visnoh smaranam pada-sevanam arcanam vandanam dasyam [SB 7.5.23], the devotional service. Tan manye adhitam uttamam. They are being first-class educated, these boys, they, simply by chanting and dance. Don't be disturbed, that "My child is not being educated." What is this education? This education, this bodily concept of life, it is not education. That "I am this body," "I am Indian," "I am American," "I am brahmana," "I am ksatriya," "I am white," "I am black," this education, the whole world this education is going on, nationalism, in the name of nationalism, communism, socialism. They are all bodily concept of life. That is not education. That education is useless, because this kind of education will not stop the process of birth, death, old age and disease. They may be technical education, temporary, some bodily comfort, but this is not taken as education. Real education is brahma-jijnasa, athato brahma jijnasa. That is real education. What I am, that is brahma-jijnasa. Aham brahmasmi. When he comes to the conclusion that he is not this body, he is spirit soul, that is real education.

    Lecture on Srimad-Bhagavatam 7.9.5 — February 12, 1976, Mayapur