The Great Moon Landing Hoax
By Patita Pavana das Adhikary
Ed., The Astrological Newsletter
Surprisingly, there are those who, while claiming to believe in the words of the pure devotee, have also swallowed NASA’s lunar launch ruse. In responding to a 2009 article on www.dandavats.com entitled “Shrila Prabhupada Was Not Alone To Claim that the Moon Landing Was a Hoax,” Varnadi das expressed such doubts. He wrote, “I respect Shrila Prabhupada’s viewpoint on the whole Moon landing thing and even agree with it in relation to its shastric roots. That, however, does not necessarily mean that I reject the Moon landings. This is where I draw the line. I want to be true to both Shrila Prabhupada and myself.” The article’s author, Shriman Payonidhi das, replied in a way that sums up a true disciple’s feelings: “You can keep your faith in science. I’ve put mine in Shrila Prabhupada,” And: “My spiritual master said they didn’t go and that is what I believe.” It is noteworthy that Payonidhi Prabhu’s short article inspired the most-ever comments for an article on that site, over 150.
A recent article on Dandavats entitled “Astronomical Models of Lunar Position,” and some of the ensuing comments, seem to lend credence to modern science. This article will therefore simply review the words of our World Acharya in the matter of the Moon launch. From the few statements below–there are dozens more–we can see that Prabhupada approached the self-ordained lettered mob like a prizefighter in a bare knuckle tournament. And though he was outnumbered 1,000’s to 1, he always scored a knockout in every match. The pure devotee’s simple logic defeats intellectual condescension shrouded in pseudoscientific jargon with one fell swoop!
In preparing this article, we are indebted to Shriman Hari Sauri Das for his encyclopedic A Transcendental Diary (www.lotusimprints.com). His volumes are nothing less than shastra; they are the person Bhagavat in literary form. We are also beholden to Shriman Siddhanta Das for his extensive Memories of Shrila Prabhupada series, both his DVDs and volumes (www.monsoonmedia.org). Each remembrance of each disciple reflects a different luster of Shrila Prabhupada’s multi-faceted personality. Generations to come will be beholden to these two chroniclers who in exceptional times have captured the essence of an exceptional personality and empowered representative of Lord Shri Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
From the Fifth Canto, SB
“Above the rays of the sunshine by a distance of 100,000 yojanas (800,000 miles) is the Moon, which travels at a speed faster than that of the Sun. In two lunar fortnights (one month) the Moon travels through the equivalent of one samvatsara (a year or twelve rashis) of the Sun. In two and a quarter days it passes through a month of the Sun (one rashi). And in one day it passes through a fortnight of the Sun.” [SB 5.22.8]
Bhaktivedanta Purport to 5.22.8
When we take into account that the Moon is 100,000 yojanas, or 800,000 miles, above the rays of the sunshine, it is very surprising that the modern excursions to the Moon could be possible. Since the Moon is so distant, how space vehicles could go there is a doubtful mystery. Modern scientific calculations are subject to one change after another, and therefore they are uncertain. We have to accept the calculations of the Vedic literature. These Vedic calculations are steady; the astronomical calculations made long ago and recorded in the Vedic literature are correct even now. Whether the Vedic calculations or modern ones are better may remain a mystery for others, but as far as we are concerned, we accept the Vedic calculations to be correct.
-His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
“They Did Not Go to The Moon”
Malati devi dasi
One morning [at 7 Bury Place, London] I went up to Prabhupada’s door and it was a little ajar. I pushed it to look inside and Prabhupada called out, “Malati, come in, we are watching TV.” So I went in and they were watching the Moon landing. I sat down with them and we watched them land on the Moon. Immediately afterwards Prabhupada turned off the television and declared, “They did not go.” He looked at the TV and said it “This is an idiot box and it has made idiots of us.”
Of course that statement “they did not go” became quite controversial. There were devotees, including his servant Purushottama, who cited that statement as reason for departure from devotional service. They simply could not accept Shrila Prabhupada’s statement. Then, two years ago, I found a newspaper with a headline “They Did Not Go to the Moon.” It was written by two former NASA scientists. And in it they showed the picture of the Moon landing and gave various evidences as to why they did not go to the Moon so that an ordinary person could comprehend it.
First, the spaceship did not create the huge crater that should have been there in the Moon’s dusty surface. The picture showed a completely smooth surface, and neither were there any footprints.
Second, the shadows of the spacemen were aligned in the wrong direction for the time of day that this so-called picture was taken.
Third, if you looked in the back there was this metal apparatus as though it were a stage light. And it became clear, once you were informed of it. You could actually see that there was a stage light.
And the scientists declared the location to be either Arizona or Nevada. So, although Shrila Prabhupada needs no vindication, he was certainly vindicated. And I wonder if those people who doubted his words have come back.
-Memories of Shrila Prabhupada (DVD # 47)
King Kong and the Lunar Hoax
Mana-mohini devi dasi
In the late 60’, the time of the so-called Moon landing, Prabhupada (told my husband Shridham) that when he was a small child his father took him to the cinema to see a movie about a big gorilla. Shridham said, “King Kong, Shrila Prabhupada?” Prabhupada’s eyes got real big and he said, “You have seen?” And Shridham said, “Oh yes, everybody knows about King Kong.” Shrila Prabhupada said, “In this movie it appeared as though King Kong was climbing the Empire State Building and swatting airplanes, but we know that that’s not true. The clouds that the airplanes were going through were probably cotton. They airplanes were toys and the buildings were toys, and even the gorilla was not real. So in this way they can very easily make it look as though they have landed upon the Moon when in actuality we know that they didn’t.”
Then he went on to explain the motivations behind this. It was due to the government wanting to instill a feeling of patriotism and national pride in the public because they would soon be raising taxes substantially on the American people. And sure enough within a few weeks, spread all over the newspapers was a giant tax increase. And Prabhupada said, “Yes, this is why they said they landed on the Moon.”
-Memories of Shrila Prabhupada DVD (#50)
All entries to follow are from Hari Sauri das’ A Transcendental Diary:
Blazing Fire Surrounded by Ice: That is the Description
Again he attacked the scientists, criticizing their endeavors to go to the Moon. The Vedas give an account of the formation of the universe, a much different story than what the scientists tell us. “They have simply made false propaganda. They cannot go there. So because the atmosphere is different… There is also blazing fire surrounded by ice. That is the description. I am speaking from the description. And therefore at night it is so pleasing. You have got experience. Fire coming through ice, the rays, that is very pleasing. Therefore sunshine is making the whole thing very hot and the moonshine making it pleasing. So God’s arrangement is so nice that everything is going on nicely. There is brain behind it. Why there is sunshine, why there is moonshine, everything is described. You’ll read in the Shrimad Bhagavatam. Moon is the cause of vegetation in all planets; and they say there is no vegetation, it is simply dust. So we have to believe it? And when you present actual fact it is mysticism or mythology. Anyway, we are not concerned with their statement. Our process is to know things from the shastra. Sadhu shastra guru vakya cittete koriya aikya. Our process is deductive, not inductive. We take knowledge, just like this Shrimad Bhagavatam written by Vyasadeva under the instruction of his guru, spiritual master, Narada.”
A Transcendental Diary, vol. 2
1 June 1976 (Honolulu) p. 225-6
* * *
“Play for You is Death for Us”
Of course, the scientists also came under Prabhupada’s critical scrutiny. Now the latest thing is the Mars probe. Since the Moon is no longer interesting, after so much expenditure for no result, Shrila Prabhupada asked why such scientific exploration at the expense of these taxpayers was allowed to go on.
Radhaballabha suggested it was because they consider it “a very noble cause to increase knowledge.” By use of a short fable Prabhupäda illustrated the plight of the taxpayers. “Some frogs were there, and children were throwing stones. Then the frogs appealed, ‘Sir, why you are throwing stone upon us?’ ‘No, we are playing.’ ‘So what is play for you, it is death to us.’ So these rascals are playing, and we have to pay heavy tax for that. This is going on. We are playing, making some scientific research, and who will pay for that? You. You work hard in the factory and pay tax. This is civilization. ‘You pay tax, and we spend it as we like.’ Frivolity. This is going on. This is the government of Kali-yuga. What can you do?
“‘What is play to you is death to us.’ And ‘Never mind. You die. We play.’ They have already spent so much money, Moon exploration. And that has stopped now, no benefit. They brought some sand and some rock–satisfied. Again, the same thing with Mars. But we can say from our poor knowledge that as they have failed in the Moon planet, they will fail also in the Mars. Take it down. Note now. Do you know this is all bluff?”
Radhaballabha told him that after the interviews in Los Angeles the newspapers quoted him as saying that they did not go to the Moon. They also printed his Sunday-Moon-day logic. Shrila Prabhupäda was happy to hear it. He issued his challenge afresh. “Nobody can answer that. The common sense. Can any one of you answer why Sunday first and Monday next? Even Svarupa Damodara has not answered. Any scientist here who can answer why Sunday first and Monday second?”
Janahlada dasa hazarded a guess. “I’m not a scientist, but I always thought that the ancients thought that the Sun was first because without telescopes or light-measuring instruments it was bigger and it looked closer.”
“That’s a fact.” Prabhupada’s affirmative response told him that it wasn’t just because it looked that way. “Sunday is first, and Monday–Moon is beyond Sun. If they accept that nobody can approach Sun, then how they can approach Moon? In calculation, eighteen thousand miles per hour, and if the Moon is situated ninety five million miles, then how they can go in four days? These are my questions. They have not been answered. It takes at least seven months. And they went in four days, and the man’s mother … His photograph was there. She said, ‘At last my son has gone there.’ You have seen that photograph? I have seen it. Mother was satisfied. This is going on.”
Pusta Krishna read on. When he got to text nineteen Shrila Prabhupada had a few more things to say about the materialistic scientists. The verse described the fate of the demons. “Those who are envious and mischievous, who are the lowest among men, are cast by Me into the ocean of material existence, into various demoniac species of life.”
Prabhupada explained that even if one doesn’t accept there is a God, he is still subject to a superior force. “This body is a machine. The machine is given by material nature. Today you may be a very big man, and by your activities, asuric activities, you are so condemned that you have to accept a lower-grade life, a fox, sly fox. ‘You are very sly to spend others’ money in Moon excursion. Now you become a fox.’ So who can check it? Here it is stated, tan aham dvishatah kruran. So you cannot check it. You are not so great scientist. You cannot check God’s law, so how you can say that there is no God?
A Transcendental Diary, vol. 3
28 June 1976 (New Vrindaban) p. 91
* * *
“Photograph You Can Take Anywhere”
A little later Prabhupada and I talked about the Moon landing. I made the point that they will always try to claim some success or benefit because they have to get grants. Shrila Prabhupäda was very clear about it despite the propaganda in the newspapers. “From our estimation it is failure. They have not gone there.”
I said, “They have to say it’s a success. Just like this Mars thing. If they can land a spaceship that takes a few photographs, supposedly of Mars, then that’s considered a success.” “Photograph you can take anywhere,” Prabhupada said dismissively.
I agreed “Yes.” But still I was puzzled, and so I asked him what he thought was really going on. “Could they, or are they actually sending these spaceships to another planet, or…?”
“That they know,” Prabhupada told me, not wanting to speculate. “According to our calculations, they have not gone. Therefore false propaganda. They cannot go.”
A Transcendental Diary, vol. 3
28 June 1976 (New Vrindaban) p.101
* * *
“Fools and Rascals Believe Them”
The conversation started out with more critique on the Mars probe. We supplied some details, culled from the newspapers and as always, Shrila Prabhupada was entirely skeptical about what he termed as a childish attempt and a complete waste of money. He had said as much ten years ago, he told us, when they so-called went to the Moon. Now, he said, there is no more talk of the Moon yet so much money was spent. As far as he was concerned, they never went. He was only surprised that people so readily accept the scientists’ speculations. He laughed and said we were fools and rascals for believing them.
A Transcendental Diary, vol. 3
1 July 1976 (New Vrindaban) p.110
* * *
Shrila Prabhupada Announces the Mayapur Planetarium
Shrila Prabhupada met with Yadubara dasa and his wife, Vishakha dasi, along with Svarupa Damodara, Rupunuga and Brishakapi Prabhus at about four thirty. Yadubara and Vishakha are expert photographers and Prabhupada gave them a special assignment. “I wanted both of you to take various detailed photographs of that Capitol.” “The Capitol Building.” Yadubara nodded. “For what purpose, Shrila Prabhupada?”
“We shall have a planetarium in Mayapur,” Prabhupada told him. “To show spiritual world, material world, and so on succession of the planetary systems, everything. A building like that. We are acquiring three hundred and fifty acres of land for constructing a small township to attract people from all the world to see the planetarium… You take all details, inside, outside. That will be nice.”
He relaxed his asana for a moment, beads clicking invisibly between the fingers of his cloth back in -covered hand, the maha-mantra on his lips, “Hare Krishna Hare Krishna…”
He turned to Svarupa Damodara. “And you prove that Sun planet is first. It is stated in the Bhagavatam.” He has repeatedly brought this subject up for discussion during his travels. And whenever he does so, he invariably says that Svarupa Dämodara Prabhu has not answered him on it. Now he was able to address to him personally on the issue. Svarupa Dämodara gave a little laugh. “I was going to inquire about that. The order, Sunday, Monday, whether it has to do anything with the distance.”
“Distance, whatever it may be. But the Sun is first, then Moon, then Mars, then Jupiter, like that. One after another. Otherwise, why Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, like that?”
Yadubara asked if the planets were ordered according to their distance from the earth.
“Yes,” Prabhupada said, and he gave his calculations. “According to Bhagavatam the Moon is situated 1,600,000 miles away, up, to the Sun, upper. According to their calculation, 93,000,000 miles, sun is situated from the earth. And if the Moon is plus 1,600,000 then it becomes 95,000,000. It takes at least seven months at the speed they are going, 18,000 miles per hour. So how they have gone in four days?”
He put forth another of his arguments. “They have brought some sand. Such a brilliant planet which is illuminating the whole universe, and they brought sand. All bluff.”
Svarupa Damodara said he and the other members of the Institute would have to study it very carefully.
“All bluff,” Shrila Prabhupada repeated.
Slightly puzzled, Yadubara wondered whether the earth-to-the-sun distance Shrila Prabhupada was using, 93,000,000 miles, was from the Shrimad-Bhagavatam, since it is the distance given by modern astronomers.
“It is about,” Shrila Prabhupada told him. “The whole diameter [of the universe] is four billions. And sun is situated almost in the middle.”
He paused for a few seconds and then stated deliberately, “It is my firm conviction that they did not go to the Moon. Neither they’ll be able to go to the Mars as they have planned it.” Svarupa Damodara began, “But their scientists would be mad…”
“They are mad already,” Shrila Prabhupada declared easily. “They’re talking all nonsense. Already they’re mad.” Svarupa Damodara mentioned that the scientists were studying the rocks from the Moon.
Shrila Prabhupada reminded us that they are admitted to be exactly the same as those found on earth. He pointed out that the Moon illuminates the universe with its brilliant shine, so if the rocks and sand are the same as on earth, why doesn’t the Sahara desert illumine just as brightly? Svarupa Damodara told him that the subject had already become a controversial matter in their college preaching. Some people had read about it in the Shrimad Bhagavatam, and our devotees also were telling college students. Thus, they had already been challenged whether they believed that the Moon was further away from earth than the Sun. “So what did you answer?” Prabhupäda asked him.
“We said yes, but our explanation was not solid in the sense that we said you have to study this more carefully. We had one explanation saying that now, the way we perceive knowledge, though we understand things, there is also a conditioning behind it. Actually this is a fact, but in mathematics, if we change the axiom, then we have a whole new understanding, it’s almost completely upside down, but still we can interpret the result. Niels Bohr studied the structure of the atom. He had a mathematical equation to fit the phenomena of this atom, and actually you can perfectly describe this phenomena by this equation, but, now, at modern times, this quantum mechanics, it turns out whatever he did was completely wrong, but it can be described completely, perfectly well as his model, as is our present understanding. His theories, he could explain things on his own, but still it’s completely wrong. So we are discussing about our limitations of our so-called knowledge-finding technique. So we said, ‘One has to be a little open-minded and discuss these things.’”
Svarupa Damodara pointed out, “Actually especially astronomy is one of the most unscientific branches of study, knowledge. It’s very, very little known. The techniques that they use, are very difficult to rely on.” We talked a little about how the Sun orbits the universe and is not fixed in one position, with Prabhupada quoting the Brahma Samhita.Yadubara wondered if the scientists would dismiss our claims as simply myth.
Shrila Prabhupada was dismissive of them. “Your claim also is myth. Who believes you? If you don’t believe me, I don’t believe you. Finished.” “So we should present our side,” Yadubara said. “Yes. That is our business,” Prabhupada said. “If you don’t believe me I don’t believe you. Finished business. You have got your authority, I’ve got my authority. What is your age? You are all scientists within two hundred years. And our Bhagavata is written five thousand years ago. Why shall I accept yours? You have become all scientists, and everything within two hundred years. What is the age of your European, Western civilization? It cannot go more than three thousand years? Our Bhagavata is written five thousand years ago. And before that, Sukadeva Goswami says, ‘I have heard like this.’ That’s all. Millions and millions of years ago.”
Brishakapi reiterated Prabhupada’s statement that whatever they say we take it as wrong, and Shrila Prabhupada agreed. He said the conditioned souls are all imperfect and everything they present is simply speculation; therefore whatever they observe with their imperfect senses is also imperfect. Thus one person puts forward a theory, and even though it is known that his knowledge is imperfect, still he wants to speak on it. Therefore, Prabhupäda said it means he simply wants to cheat. Then a few years later someone else will give another explanation showing the first one to be wrong; then his idea in turn is replaced by another. Since all of them are wrong, he said they all belong to a ‘parampara of cheaters.”
Brishakapi tried to grasp the implications of this statement. “But they cheated when they said they went to the Moon.”
“Yes,” Prabhupada continued. “They’re cheaters, those who have got imperfect senses, they’re all cheaters. If they say something, ‘Definitely this is like this,’ that is cheating.”
“But how can so many cheat?” Brishakapi wasn’t disagreeing with Shrila Prabhupada, but was simply trying to understand it. “Together they all cheat; they all say they went to the Moon. One thousand scientists, all together in one room? They all say, ‘We agree, this, they went to the Moon, here’s the…”
Shrila Prabhupada wasn’t put off by the enormous implications of his statement. Rather he was very positive about it. “Therefore I say that if we can prove that the Moon is beyond Sun, then all these cheaters will be finished, by one stroke.”
Svarupa Damodara said that all the speculation goes on in the name of intellectual exercise.
Prabhupada told a little tale to demonstrate how they take shelter in each other’s folly. “A fool is accepted by another fool. They’re getting Nobel Prize and so on, fool’s paradise. All of them are fools and they have created their own paradise. Do you know that story? One was drinking, so his friend said, ‘Oh, you are drinking, you’ll go to hell.’
“‘No, why? My father drinks.’
“‘Well, he’ll also go to hell.’
“‘Oh, my brother drinks.’
“‘So he’ll also go to hell.’
“’My mother…’ In this way, the whole list was passed. Then he said, ‘Everyone will go to hell then where is hell? It is paradise! If father is going, then mother is going, then I am going, then brother is going, then where is hell?’
“It is like that. There’s no question of fool. If everyone, all of us are fool, then where is the question of intelligent? ‘Hey, we are intelligent.’ This is their conclusion. We can give credit to something, just like I can see up to this wall. But if I say, ‘Now I am seeing beyond this wall everything, the forest and everything, I know everything.’ That is going on. Cheating.”
Svarupa Damodara informed Shrila Prabhupada of two main problems for the scientists. “One is this astronomical problem and the second is the origin of life. So my feeling is that in about fifty years something is going to be settled.”
Prabhupada laughed. “It’s already settled. They should accept that they are defeated. It’s already settled. But these rascals must admit. That’s all.”
Svarupa Damodara said, “It’s settled in the sense that even the scientist will come around that, ‘Oh, yes, what we taught was wrong.'”
Shrila Prabhupada liked his optimism. “Yes. That we want. They have become unnecessary authorities and misleading people. That we want to expose.”
Prabhupada chatted for a while, especially about the need for devotees to take charge and manage the affairs of the world. He said this was Krishna’s desire, just as when He had personally arranged to have the Pandavas take charge. Brishakapi Prabhu, not a man for subtleties, asked, “Will this Movement take over the world, Prabhupada?” Shrila Prabhupada was measured in his response. “At least you keep one idea; there is possibility.”
“I think it will be very big,” Brishakapi said very positively.
“That is possible,” Prabhupada agreed. “If we become serious and sincere, then it will go on, undoubtedly.” Brishakapi had visions of an expansive future. “See how big it grew just in ten years. Today is our ten-year anniversary. So in ten years we have gotten so big, by geometric progression in twenty years how big will we be? Thousands and thousands of people, chanting and dancing.”
“And there is chance,” Prabhupada assured us. “Simply by chanting you can attract so many people.”
A Transcendental Diary, vol. 3
6 July 1976 (Washington, DC) p. 183
* * *
The So-Called Mars Landing
As they conversed, a devotee came in with the morning newspaper. The front page had a picture purportedly sent by satellite all the way from the planet Mars. Prabhupada has been following the progress of the so-called Mars landing, via our reports, ever since he arrived in America. The photo showed a very large crater and a massive gorge, which the report said was a dried river bed ten times the size of the Grand Canyon in Arizona. Prabhupada wasn’t at all impressed. He didn’t believe their real business was on Mars at all.
Smiling, Rupanuga concurred. “I think it was all like a movie set.” “That’s all,” Prabhupada said.” They are not going. Why they are taking Arizona? That means they are in Arizona. Just like one man was stealing from the room, and there were some sounds, and the master of the house said, ‘Who is there? What is that sound?’ The man said, ‘No, no, I am not stealing.’ It is like that.”
The veranda filled with laughter at his witty psychoanalysis. Rupanuga said that throughout the article they were making comparisons with the earth. “Shrila Prabhupada, you catch them red-handed.”
Shrila Prabhupäda grinned. “Oh, yes, that I can do. Who asked them to speak of Arizona? Who asked that you are stealing? He asked for the sound, but he disclosed, ‘No, no, I am not stealing.’ It is like that. Why they are bringing Arizona? They could have mentioned other places.”
A Transcendental Diary, vol. 3
7 July 1976 (Washington, DC) p. 201
* * *
“To Keep Their Service in Order”
Tamal Krishna Maharaja came into Shrila Prabhupada’s sitting room for a few minutes as Prabhupäda prepared for his morning walk. Prabhupada told him about the cheating scientists who declare that life comes from chemicals, and he gave him his views on the recent space shot to Mars. “Why these rascals compare it with Arizona? As if there is no other place in the world. Everything they are doing in Arizona. All photograph in this place. Now they have been caught. I was always protesting, ‘These rascals have never gone [to the Moon]. For the last ten years I’ve protested [the lunar “landing”]. Whenever they asked me, I say straightly, ‘It is all childish. They have never gone, neither they’ll be able to go.’ That has been proof available. Now they do not talk about it. All propaganda, finished. Now they have taken another, Mars, to keep their service in order. This is going on, all cheating. To keep people in darkness and exploit them.
The so-called swamis exploiting, yogis exploiting, politician exploiting, scientists exploiting, philosophers exploiting. What is the position of the world? This is the opportunity, human life, to know everything, to solve all the problems. They are not given the opportunity, they are kept in darkness. The demons, ‘There is no God, science is everything, life is produced from chemicals, and there is no living entities on other planets.’ They are simply show. And we have to believe that. Perhaps for the first time I am raising protest against all this nonsense.”
A Transcendental Diary, vol. 3
10 July 1976 (NYC, NY) p. 241
* * *
“The Whole Business is Going on in Arizona.”
“They admit, the scientists they admit that they are in ignorance. Simply bluff. [Prabhupada] told them that the Mars expedition was another bluff. “The business is going on in the Arizona, that’s all. And after few years they will present some stone, ‘Now we went to Mars. There is no possibility of living there. Take this stone and sand and be satisfied for your millions of dollars that you have spent.’ And they will say, ‘Oh, we have made scientific progress. I have got this stone.’”
To brilliantly expose their mentality he quoted yet another saying from his seemingly unlimited stock. “There is a song in Bengal that formerly anything European, sahib, that is good. So one person is selling meat, flesh of dog. Flesh of dog nobody takes, at least in India. So he said that ‘This is not ordinary dog. This is the dog which was killed by Viceroy, that dog. And because Viceroy killed it, therefore it has become nice dog. You can eat it.’ So, anything these so-called scientists said, that is to be accepted, without any common sense. This is your intelligence.’ He started laughing. “But I am fool Indian, I don’t believe it. I immediately capture the point, why this rascal is talking of Arizona? That means that the whole business is going on in Arizona.”
Bali-mardana had just traveled through Arizona and had noticed that much of the land is under government control. He said, “So there is good facility for them to make secretly.”
“Yes. The Moon business was done there,” Shrila Prabhupada said. Tamal Krishna’s analytical mind was quick to grasp the import. “This means it’s definitely a very calculated plot to cheat the public.”
Prabhupada was sure of it. “That’s all. Just to convince people that our, this rascal civilization, is advanced.”
Both Rameshvara and Tamal thought it must be an international conspiracy. They were keen to see how pervasive Shrila Prabhupada felt the cheating was. Tamal Krishna said, “That means all the nations are cooperating in this project.”
“All the so-called scientists,” Prabhupada confirmed.
“Do they know that they are?” Tamal asked. “Are they talking with each other, or are they just … ?”
“No, they are knowing,” Prabhupada assured him. “They talk. Chauri chauri matrika-bhai. All thieves, they are cousin brothers: ‘Don’t expose me and I’ll not expose you. Let us keep peace.’ Two thieves, he knows he is a thief, but if he wants to reveal a thief, then his business will suffer.”
Rameshwara, Tamal Krishna and Bali-mardana smiled, a bit amazed at the revelation of the cheating, appreciating Shrila Prabhupada’s boldness in exposing it. “Except for you, no one is blowing the whistle on these people. You are like a transcendental detective,” Tamal Krishna said.
A Transcendental Diary, vol. 3
12 July 1976 (NYC, NY) p. 263
* * *
“I Am Not So Fool!”
“You have to attempt in such a way that after giving up this body, you go back home, back to Godhead, never come back again here. This is the way. Otherwise, there is no happiness. You go on struggling, that is your choice. Make new attempts. Just like this Moon excursion. Ten years ago in one small book, Easy Journey to Other Planets, we predicted that this Moon-going attempt is childish and waste of time. We are not expert scientist, but from the shastra we can understand. Now such a brilliant planet, pleasing, and they have discovered there rocks and sand. Just see their intelligence.
Do you think rocks and sand are so brilliant? What do you think? This bluff is going on. People are feeling under the moonshine is so pleasing—and it is full of rocks and sand! We have to accept that. Rocks and sand, throughout the whole day by scorching heat, they also become heated. So if it is rocks and sand, so whole day it was heated by the sunshine, how it is pleasing?”
Prabhupada elucidated a while longer on the need to give up all designations, and finally, after a full night’s preaching, his guests left and he relaxed on the veranda. Even after all the visitors had gone he continued to preach to his disciples, perpetually enthusiastic to talk of Lord Krishna and the sublime philosophy of Bhagavad-gita
He decided to take rest inside rather than on the open veranda, saying that it was a little cool. Pradyumna pointed out that it was coming to purnima, the full Moon.
“Yes, Moon is the cooling effect,” Prabhupada said. And then with a grin, seizing on yet another opportunity to discredit the scientists, he added sarcastically, “Desert will make a cooling effect!” He made everyone laugh. “Just see. At least I shall not believe that this is desert and rock. I’m not so fool. The desert and rock is giving so nice brilliant shining, everyone is feeling comfortable. Just see. And we have to believe it.”
A Transcendental Diary, vol. 4
8 Aug. 1978 (Tehran) p. 21
* * *
“How Can the Moon Be Desert?”
Parivrajakacharya also pointed out that nowadays the [Iranian] government is irrigating the land and all kinds of vegetables and grains can be grown, so now people cannot use the excuse that they have to eat meat.
Prabhupada had another alternative. “They can have rains from the sky by chanting. The rain will fall from the sky. Who can check it? Krishna gives the water from the sky. Yajnad bhavati parjanyo.” Parivrajakacharya said that 2-3,000 years ago, this region was a very thick forest. But since then it has become desert, and the rain has stopped.
This was because the yajna had stopped, Prabhupada told him. Then he added yet another one of his insights as to why the Moon could not be desert: “The thing is that the more people become sinful, they’ll be disturbed by this natural atmosphere. Therefore I’m surprised that Moon planet is inhabited by pious inhabitants, how there can be desert?”
A Transcendental Diary, vol. 4
8 Aug. 1978 (Tehran) p. 33
* * *
“They Have No Common Sense”
Tonight as I gave Prabhupada his massage up on the roof, the full Moon illuminated everything around, almost as if it were day. This is said to be the brightest Moon of the year and the one under which the rasa dance takes place. While I massaged his legs and feet, Prabhupada called my attention to the soothing brilliance of the Moon’s rays. “And they say it is coming from dust,” he said softly. “I am surprised only for this—that they accept such nonsense. They have no common sense.”
A Transcendental Diary, vol. 4
7 October 1976 (Vrindavana) p. 589