Civilizations have come and gone. From the Roman & Babylonian to the current modern age, civilizations have all progressed and evolved. If one asks how humans have progressed over these civilizations the answers would be largely around the feats achieved in technology and science. They may also boast the knowledge of avenues of luxuries it has brought along with it. In enjoying all these luxuries if even one human genuinely introspects how does these artificial luxuries satisfy the soul?s inherent desire for happiness and eternal life? One will come to a conclusion that it never does.
His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada in this pocket edition of Civilization and Transcendence implores us to not to lose focus over the true hankerings and needs of the soul. He imparts his teachings with sound Vedic knowledge in a lucid language and explains how technology and science are essential but cannot be of any assistance in our true pursuit: to transcend this material world and awaken our spiritual consciousness.
In June of 1976, Bhavan’s Journal, a Bombay cultural and religious magazine, sent various religious and spiritual leaders a questionnaire, seeking enlightened answers to some of the perplexing questions of the day, such as the place of religion in modern society.
One recipient of their questionnaire was Srila Prabhupada, who took the opportunity to make a thorough presentation of the ideal Vedic civilization, show the faults of modern society from the viewpoint of transcendence, and offer practical solutions based on Krishna conscious teachings.
His answers to Bhavan’s Journal were later compiled and published as Civilization and Transcendence, a compact and lively book of questions and answers like this:
Srila Prabhupada: We are sometimes labeled “escapists.” What is the charge?
Disciple: They say we are escaping from reality.
Srila Prabhupada: Yes, escaping your fruitless endeavor.