By His Divine Grace A.C.B. Swami Prabhupada
When a person is advanced in spiritual consciousness, or Krsna consciousness, he naturally becomes very sympathetic toward all living entities suffering in the material world. Naturally such an advanced person thinks of the suffering of the people in general. However, if one does not know of the material sufferings of fallen souls and becomes sympathetic because of bodily comforts, … such sympathy or compassion is the cause of one's downfall. If one is actually sympathetic to fallen, suffering humanity, he should try to elevate people from material consciousness to spiritual consciousness. … As far as the material body is concerned, we cannot do anything for anyone.
“There are different kinds of welfare activities in this material world, but the supreme welfare activity is the spreading of Krsna consciousness. Other welfare activities cannot be effective, for the laws of nature and the results of karma cannot be checked. It is by destiny, or the laws of karma, that one must suffer or enjoy. For instance, if one is given a court order, he must accept it, whether it brings suffering or profit. Similarly, everyone is under obligations to karma and its reactions. No one can change this.” (SB 8.7.44)
“However, by the grace of Krsna, we may raise a person to spiritual consciousness if we ourselves follow the rules and regulations. If we give up our own spiritual activities and simply become concerned with the bodily comforts of others, we will fall into a dangerous position.” (SB 5.8.9)
“Love of humanity means raising people to the point where they can understand the real goal of life. We do not serve humanity by keeping people in darkness. We must enlighten others with knowledge, and ultimate knowledge means understanding God, our relationship with God, and the activities of that relationship. That is real humanitarian work. Mankind must be informed of the nature of the body and the soul and the necessities and goal of the soul.” (DS p. 409)