Vamanadev: What of the Gurus who claim to be God?
Prabhupada: What if I say I am president Nixon? Would you accept me? Just tell me why not?
Vamanadev: You don't have the characteristics.
Prabhupada: That means you are not insane. (Prabhupada says approvingly). But If I say I am God and you accept me, can you begin to imagine such insantity? One man claims He is God and another man accepts him to be God.
Carlos(A guest): Are we all not one?
Prabhupada: That is a different thing. Are you one with President Nixon?
Carlos: Yes. He's a human being.
Prabhupada: That he may be. As human beings you have so much in common, but still you cannot say that you are president Nixon. In so many qualities, we are one with God but we aren't God. Those who do not how great God is, try to claim His greatness. This is insanity.
Prabhupada: Insanity means forgetting God. Forgetting God means material consciousness, maya. When a man is insane, his condition is considered abnormal. Maya is abnormal departure from our original Krishna Consciousness. In maya, we falsely think we are independant. But really, who's independant?
Kirtananda: No more than proprietorship.
Prabhupada: So these are all false claims. The only real problem is, 'How can I best serve Krishna?' and Krishna is so kind that He says, Just chant Hare Krishna. That's all.
Srila Prabhupada Conversations from Hare Krishna Explosion :: 1968