From a talk by Srila Prabhupada on Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya-lila 25.29, January 21, 1967, San Francisco.
The laws of nature are so strict that if you have to suffer, nobody can check it. That is realized by Prahlada Maharaja. There are so many evidences. Balasya neha saranam pitarau. (SB 7.9.19) [“My Lord Nrsimhadeva, O Supreme, because of a bodily conception of life, embodied souls neglected and not cared for by You cannot do anything for their betterment. Whatever remedies they accept, although perhaps temporarily beneficial, are certainly impermanent. For example, a father and mother cannot protect their child, a physician and medicine cannot relieve a suffering patient, and a boat on the ocean cannot protect a drowning man.”]
There are many children, they have got their parents, but they are suffering. Actually, their parents take care. But in spite of their parents being present, they are suffering for want of food, want of proper management. Therefore it is to be understood that the father and mother are not actually the responsible persons to take care of the children.
Then, nartasya cagadam. Artasya, those who are suffering from disease—medicine is not all. Suppose one man is suffering: you give him all treatment and medicine. There are many rich men; they can spend like anything. But does it mean that he’ll be cured? No. He may not be cured. And even in the presence of parents, the children may suffer.
Udanvati nauh. And suppose you have got very good, nice ship. Do you mean to say that you’ll cross over the Atlantic Ocean safely? Oh, at any moment it can be drowned. There is no guarantee. You have got very nice jet plane; you are going to San Francisco. Oh, there is no guarantee that you will reach there. Therefore, unless there is God’s sanction, all these remedies, all these protections, are useless.
Therefore the best service to the humanity is to revive people’s Krishna consciousness, God consciousness. That will save them. Not this little hospital or this little foodstuff. No. That cannot save him. If God neglects one . . . There is a Bengali saying, two lines: rakse krsna mare ke, mare krsna rakse ke. If Krishna, God, wants to kill somebody, oh, nobody can protect him. And if God wants to protect him, oh, nobody can kill him. . . . Both ways.
One Dr. Ghosh told me—because I was in medical business. He went to see one patient. He explained, “He’s suffering from pneumonia, and he’s such a poor man, lying in such an unfavorable condition. Our medical science says he should have died. But I don’t see that he’s dying. He’s not dying.” I have tested this. One doctor at Gaya, a Muhammadan named Suvahi—I saw that many patients were surrounding him. So I congratulated him, “Doctor, you have got very good patients. Your practice is very nice.” “Sir,” he replied, “it is not my credit. If you want my practical experience, I’ll tell you that with confidence I prescribe somebody some medicine—it fails. And without any confidence, just to take a chance, I prescribe some medicine, ‘Oh, let me see . . .’ and, oh, it works nicely. So actually, I can take no credit.” So, he was an honest man to admit, “It is God’s grace that so many patients are being cured in my hand, but I say I have no credit.” This the reality.
So, we should not take any credit. Everything is under the laws of the Supreme Lord, through the agency of this material, external energy. Just like a government is working through different departments, similarly God is working through His different energies. He’s sitting with you, He’s seeing everything, and He knows everything. Vedaham samatitani. (Gita 7.26) [“O Arjuna, as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, I know everything that has happened in the past, all that is happening in the present, and all things that are yet to come. I also know all living entities; but Me no one knows.”]