"The subject matter you have inquired from me is very grave and cannot be replied haphazardly. It appears you have no deep study in the matter, and if you are serious about it you have to live with us for some time to understand.
As a summary study I may inform you that human life must lead to God realization. Without God realization there is no difference between human life and animal life. All the Vedic literature is aimed at making human life a success by God realization. In this age that God realization is made very easy by chanting the holy names, Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare/Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare.
Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu has very kindly introduced this method 500 years ago, and it has proved a very potent and active process. God being absolute, His holy names, form, pastimes, etc., are not different from Him. So this requires deep study and understanding, otherwise it is very difficult to understand.
I have got my program to go to Calcutta by the end of the month. At that time you can try to meet me. But unless you intimately associate yourself with the devotees in this connection, it will be very difficult for you to understand the whole procedure."
(Srila Prabhupada Letter, September 18, 1974)
"Yes, the Mahabharata is an authoritative book. It is considered the fifth veda. But, quotations must be given from the original Mahabharata.
Regarding your question on demigod worship, there are so many demigods, and the qualities may be overlapping. Demigod worship is meant for materialistic men whether in goodness, passion, or ignorance. Those in the transcendental position above the qualities of the material world worship Visnu. Most people do not know that Visnu is the ultimate aim of worship. The varna-asrama system is organized with this purpose, to worship Visnu. So far we are concerned, we never recommend to worship any demigod either in goodness, passion or ignorance."
(Srila Prabhupada Letter, October 18, 1974)
"So far your worship of Lord Jagannatha in your home and your becoming initiated. It is alright provided you have the recommendation of the temple president. I am very glad to see that such a young boy as yourself you are taking serious interest in this Krishna Consciousness Movement. Please continue in this way Our process is something universal. It cannot be checked by any means. Anyone in any place, in any country can chant Hare Krishna. If it is possible to go to the temple, then take advantage of the temple. A temple is a place where by one is given the opportunity to render direct devotional service to the Supreme Lord Sri Krishna. In conjunction with this you should always read my books daily and all your questions will be answered and you will have a firm basis of Krishna Consciousness. In this way your life will be perfect."
(Srila Prabhupada Letter, November 22, 1974)
"Regarding there going to be depression and atomic war, who said that? This is all false propaganda. I never said this.
Regarding free will and pre-destination, yes, materially everything is decided. Spiritually you can make advancement despite all material destiny. Materially you cannot change things as they are but spiritually it is possible. No, devotees are not allowed more than one wife. Devotees should have no wife if possible, but those who cannot maintain celibacy, they can marry one wife. At the present moment people are so unfortunate they cannot maintain even one wife. First of all at the present moment they are not married and remain mostly unmarried. So for such persons even one wife is a great burden. Under the circumstances how one can think of more than one wife? This is stupidity.
Regarding your fifth question, that I shall think over. Regarding the sannyasi, therefore I have stopped sannyasa. No Vaisnava says that he is advanced. Please send me the name of the sannyasi, and I shall do the needful. Regarding the cooking, a non-brahmana may assist but he cannot cook."
(Srila Prabhupada Letter, November 24, 1974)
"In regards to your question about how the relationship between a sannyasi and the temple president should be, my hope is that you will all be able to cooperate together. The temple president is in charge and the sannyasi should not contradict the instructions. Although if he does see something wrong or if he sees a fault or defect he should bring it out directly to the temple president. And then work it out in a Krsna Conscious way. Not that he will try to over-ride the temple president's authority. I want that you all work together cooperatively. Please continue your programs there with great enthusiasm and try to strictly follow all of my regulations without any deviation. Keep yourself always fixed in Krsna's service. Don't let even a split moment go by being engaged in the service of maya."
(Srila Prabhupada Letter, December 28, 1974)
"Regarding your questions, there is no special planet for the Lord in His form of Lord Jagannatha. This particular lila was performed with His brother and sister when They were on this planet. If you are attracted to worshiping this form of the Lord, then you will go to Krishna. Lord Jagannatha is Krishna. You ask about what kind of food He likes to eat most. That you cannot prepare. If you sometimes come to Jagannatha Puri, then you can see. You should not give them any clubs to hold. It is not necessary.
Regarding astrology, you should not listen to any of these so-called astrologers—strictly avoid. Don't even see them. What is the use of seeing them? Astrology is meant for the materialist, but a spiritualist does not care for the future. Everything is dependent upon Krishna. So where is the necessity of astrology? The devotees' principle is, let there happen anything as Krishna desires. Let me remain sincere devotee, that's all. Pure devotee is never interested in this astrology."
(Srila Prabhupada Letter, January 9, 1975)
"In regards to your question, we are accepting the Srimad-Bhagavatam as it is without interpretation and in that book in the 3rd chapter of the 1st canto all the incarnations of Godhead are listed. (at least the major ones are there). It is stated there that Lord Ramacandra advented and also disappeared many many 100's of thousands of years ago. This is all I can say on this matter. I cannot go beyond what the sastra says."
(Srila Prabhupada Letter, January 16, 1975)
"Regarding your question about the controversial talks going on, this kind of talk is not befitting my advanced students. This is childish. In Krishna's service, there is no inferior and superior. Deity worship is just as important as book distribution. It is not material. As mentioned in the Bhagavatam.
sravanam kirtanam visno smaranam pada-sevanam
arcanam vandanam dasyam sakhyam atma-nivedanam
Sravanam kirtanam is the beginning—to chant and hear. Book distribution is under this category of sravanam kirtanam. The next item is smaranam. If somebody simply remembers the Supreme Lord, that is also as good as sravanam kirtanam. Then there is arcanam. That is also as good as the others, but one who simply becomes engaged in arcanam and does nothing of sravanam kirtanam, his position becomes in the material field. Any one of the nine processes is as good as the other. There is no question of inferior or superior. But out of all of them sravanam kirtanam is very important. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu while instructing Srila Rupa Gosvami, has said how the seed of devotional service sprouts and increases by watering the root by the process of sravanam kirtanam. So, these two items are very important in devotional service, but that does not mean that the other items are inferior. Srila Jiva Gosvami has stressed kirtanam especially in the age of Kali. Even if there is arcanam for sanctifying the contaminated mind, it must be accompanied by sravanam kirtanam.
So, you are all advanced students. You should understand the importance of each and every item of devotional service. Do not make any misunderstanding by devaluating any of the spiritual activities. You are one of the advanced students. One who distinguishes a particular type of service as inferior or superior, he does not know the value of devotional service. It is all transcendental. Whatever item is suitable, that is accepted as very elevated. Just like Maharaja Pariksit. He simply listened to Sukadeva Gosvami. That is sravanam. And Sukadeva Gosvami simply narrated Srimad-Bhagavatam. This is kirtanam. Prahlada Maharaja simply contemplated—smaranam. Prthu Maharaja simply did deity worship—arcanam. Arjuna only remained as friend of Krishna—sakhyam. Hanuman remained only engaged in carrying out the order of Lord Ramacandra—dasyam. And Bali Maharaja surrendered everything to Krishna—atma-nivedanam. So, any devotee executing any one of the nine is transcendentally glorious. One devotee may be proud that his process of service is the best. That is not inglorious. This is called transcendental competition. Everyone should feel proud of his particular type of devotional service, but that does not mean that other types of service are inferior. Everyone should feel proud of becoming sincere servant of Krishna, but the pure devotee never minimizes the importance of other devotees. Krishna is the enjoyer of varieties of service. It is not stuck up with any particular type of service. Krishna takes pleasure with devotees even by fighting service. When Grandfather Bhisma was trying to injure the body of Krishna by sharpened arrows, in full devotion in the mellow of chivalry, Krishna was feeling the piercing of the arrows as good as worshiping him with soft rose flowers. The conclusion is that everyone should be very very sincere. There is no more the question of inferior or superior."
(Srila Prabhupada Letter, January 19, 1975)