Devotee: "There is no possibility of one's becoming a yogi, O Arjuna, if one eats too much, or eats too little, sleeps too much or does not sleep enough (BG 6.16)."
Prabhupāda: Yes. This is very nice. (laughs) Nothing is prohibited because after all, you have to execute the yoga process with this body. To make the best use of a bad bargain. You see? This material body is the source of all miseries. Actually the spirit soul has no misery. Just like normal condition of a living entity is healthy life. Disease takes place by certain contamination infection. Disease is not our life. Similarly the present position of material existence is a diseased condition of the soul. And what is that disease? The disease is this body? Because this body is not meant for me, it is not my body. Just like your dress. You are not the dress. But we are differently dressed here. Somebody red color, somebody white color, somebody yellow color. But that color, I am not this color. Similarly this body, I am white man, black man, Indian, American or this, Hindu, Muslim, Christian. This is not my position. This is all diseased condition. Diseased condition. You are trying to get out of the disease.
That is yoga system. To connect again with the Supreme. Because I am part and parcel. The same example. Somehow or other the finger is cut off and it is falling on the ground, it has no value. My finger, when it is cut off and it is lying on the ground, it has no value. But as soon as the finger is joined with this body, it has got millions and trillions of dollars value. Invaluable. Similarly we are now disconnected with God or Kṛṣṇa, by this material condition. Forget, not disconnected. Connection is there. God is supplying our all necessities just like a state prisoner is disconnected from the civil department. He has come to the criminal department. Actually not disconnected. The government is still take care. But legally disconnected. Similarly we are not disconnected. We cannot be disconnected, because there is no existence of anything without Kṛṣṇa. So how can I be disconnected? Disconnection is that by forgetting Kṛṣṇa, instead of engaging myself in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, I am engaged in so many nonsense consciousness. That is disconnection. Instead of thinking myself that I am eternal servant of God or Kṛṣṇa, I am thinking I am servant of my society, I am servant of my country, I am servant of my husband, I am servant of my wife, I am servant of my dog or so many. This is forgetfulness.
So how it has happened? Due to this body. Whole thing. Whole misconsciousness has come into existence due to this body. Because I am born in America I am thinking American. And because I am thinking American, the American government claims, "Yes, you come and fight, give your life." Draftboard. Why? This body. Therefore the intelligent person should know that I am suffering all miserable condition of my life due to this body. So we should not act in such a way that this imprisonment with this material body will continue birth and birth. Either American body, Indian body, dog's body, hog's body, so many— 8,400,000 of body. That is called yoga. How to get out of this contamination of body. But the first instruction is to understand that I am not this body. That is the basic principle of Bhagavad-gītā teaching. Aśocyān anvaśocas tvaṁ prajñā-vādāṁś ca bhāṣase (BG 2.11). "My dear Arjuna, you are talking very nice nicely, just like a very advanced learned man. But you are talking on the bodily platform—all nonsense." "I am father of this, oh, they are my relatives, they are my this, they are my this, how can I kill, how can I do, I cannot." The whole atmosphere consciousness is body. Therefore Kṛṣṇa, just after Arjuna accepting him his spiritual master, he's immediately chastising him as a master chastises his disciple: "You nonsense, you are talking very wisely as if you know so many things. But your position is this body."
So the whole world, they are posing themselves as highly advanced in education—science, philosophy, this, that, politics, so many things. But, their position is this body. Just like, an example, a vulture. A vulture rises very high. Seven miles, eight miles up. Wonderful, you cannot do that. And he has got wonderful eyes also. There are small eyes, vulture, it is so powerful that it can see from seven mile distance where there is a carcass, dead body. So he has got good qualification. He can rise very high, he can see from a distant place. Oh. But what is his object? A dead body, that's all. His perfection is to find out a carcass, dead body, and to eat, that's all. Similarly we may go up very high education, but what is our objective, what are we seeing? How to enjoy sense, this body, that's all. And advertisement? "Oh, he has gone with sputnik seven hundred miles up." But what you do? What is your occupation? Sense gratification, that's all. That is animal. So people are not considering how they're implicated with this bodily concept of life.
So one should first of all know that our miserable condition of material existence is due to this body. At the same time this body is not permanent. Supposing I identify everything with this body—family, society, country, this, that, so many things. But how long? It is not permanent. Asat. Asat means it will not exist. Asann api kleśada āsa dehaḥ (SB 5.5.4). Simply troublesome. Not permanent and simply giving trouble. That is intelligence. How to get out of this body. People come, says that "I am not in peace. I am in trouble. My mind is not peace." But when the medicine is offered, he does not accept. You see? He wants something palatable, what he has understood, that's all. Many people come to us, "Swamiji, oh, this is my position." And as soon as we suggest the medicine, he'll not accept. Because he wants some medicine which will be acceptable by him. So how we can offer? Then why do you go to a physician? You make your own treatment? You see?
So here the suggestion is that this body is useless, but that does not mean we shall not take care. Just like you are going from one place to another place on your car. The car, you are not this car, but because you have to use the car for your work, you have to take care of the car also. But not much care that you simply become absorbed in the car business and no other business. Just like somebody, too much attachment to the car is polishing the car whole day, you see, polishing. So we should not be too much attached to this body. But because with this body we have to execute Kṛṣṇa consciousness, therefore we should keep it fit also. That is called yukta-vairāgya. We should not neglect. We shall take regular bath, we shall, regular nice food, Kṛṣṇa prasāda, keep our mind and body healthy. That is required.
So Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement does not say that artificially you simply make some renouncement, all nonsense. And to recompensate we take to some drugs, take to some intoxication, no. You take nice food. Kṛṣṇa has given nice food. Fruits, grains, milk, you can prepare hundreds and thousands of preparations nice with these foodgrains and we are doing that. Our purpose for inviting you in the love feast is that: replace Kṛṣṇa prasāda with your all nonsense foodstuff. They are not healthy. These are healthy food. Healthy food. Palatable, healthy food. So, eat Kṛṣṇa prasāda, nice prasāda. If your tongue wants some nice palatable dishes we can supply you hundreds, thousands, offered to Kṛṣṇa. Samosā and this sweet ball, rasagullā, so many things we can supply. You are not prohibited. But don't take too much. "Oh, it is very palatable, let me take one dozen of rasagullā." No, don't take that. (laughs) Then that is not good. That is greediness. You should simply take so much as will keep your body fit, that's all. You should sleep so much as will keep your body fit, that's all. Nothing more. Yuktāhāra vihārasya yogo bhavati siddha. This is called yukta. We should eat simply for keeping healthy condition. We shall sleep simply for keeping healthy condition. But if you can reduce, that's nice. But not at the risk of becoming sick.
Because in the beginning, because we are accustomed to eat voraciously, so don't try to eat less artificially. You eat. But try to minimize. Therefore there are prescription of fasting. At least two compulsory fastings in a month. And there are other fasting days. The more you can reduce your sleep and eating, you keep good health, especially for spiritual purposes. But not artificially. Not artificially. But when you advance, naturally you'll not feel.
(Srila Prabhupada Lecture, Los Angeles, February 17, 1969)