Hiraṇyakaśipu's spiritual master, Śukrācārya, had two sons named Ṣaṇḍa and Amarka, to whom Prahlāda Mahārāja was entrusted for education. Although the teachers tried to educate the boy Prahlāda in politics, economics and other material activities, he did not care for their instructions. Instead, he continued to be a pure devotee. Prahlāda Mahārāja never liked the idea of discriminating between one's friends and enemies. Because he was spiritually inclined, he was equal toward everyone.
Instead (SB cantos 7 - 12)
SB Canto 7
As Bhagavad-gītā informs us, one can understand how one is saturated with sattva-guṇa, rajo-guṇa or tamo-guṇa. In the examples given herewith, fire represents the mode of goodness. One can understand the constitution of a container for wood, petrol or other inflammable substances by the quantity of the fire. Similarly, water represents rajo-guṇa, the mode of passion. A small skin and the vast Atlantic Ocean both contain water, and by seeing the quantity of water in a container one can understand the size of the container. The sky represents the mode of ignorance. The sky is present in a small earthen pot and also in outer space. Thus by proper judgment one can see who is a devatā, or demigod, and who is an asura, Yakṣa or Rākṣasa according to the quantities of sattva-guṇa, rajo-guṇa and tamo-guṇa. One cannot judge whether a person is a devatā, an asura or a Rākṣasa by seeing him, but a sane man can understand this by the activities such a person performs. A general description is given in the Padma Purāṇa: viṣṇu-bhaktaḥ smṛto daiva āsuras tad-viparyayaḥ. A devotee of Lord Viṣṇu is a demigod, whereas an asura or Yakṣa is just the opposite. An asura is not a devotee of Lord Viṣṇu; instead, for his sense gratification he is a devotee of the demigods, bhūtas, pretas and so on. Thus one can judge who is a devatā, who is a Rākṣasa and who is an asura by how they conduct their activities.
Śiśupāla and Dantavakra were formerly Jaya and Vijaya, the doorkeepers of Vaikuṇṭha. Merging into the body of Kṛṣṇa was not their final destination. For some time they remained merged, and later they received the liberations of sārūpya and sālokya, living on the same planet as the Lord in the same bodily form. The śāstras give evidence that if one blasphemes the Supreme Lord, his punishment is to remain in hellish life for many millions of years more than one suffers by killing many brāhmaṇas. Śiśupāla, however, instead of entering hellish life, immediately and very easily received sāyujya-mukti. That such a privilege had been offered to Śiśupāla was not merely a story. Everyone saw it happen; there was no scarcity of evidence. How did it happen? Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira was very much surprised.
"Those who are envious and mischievous, who are the lowest among men, are cast by Me into the ocean of material existence, into various demoniac species of life." Whenever the Lord punishes persons like demons, however, such punishment is meant for the good of the conditioned soul. The conditioned soul, being envious of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, may accuse Him, saying, "Kṛṣṇa is bad, Kṛṣṇa is a thief" and so on, but Kṛṣṇa, being kind to all living entities, does not consider such accusations. Instead, He takes account of the conditioned soul's chanting of "Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa" so many times. He sometimes punishes such demons for one life by putting them in a lower species, but then, when they have stopped accusing Him, they are liberated in the next life because of chanting Kṛṣṇa's name constantly. Blaspheming the Supreme Lord or His devotee is not at all good for the conditioned soul, but Kṛṣṇa, being very kind, punishes the conditioned soul in one life for such sinful activities and then takes him back home, back to Godhead.
In their last birth, Jaya and Vijaya did not become demons or Rākṣasas. Instead they took birth in a very exalted kṣatriya family related to Kṛṣṇa's family. They became first cousins of Lord Kṛṣṇa and were practically on an equal footing with Him. By personally killing them with His own disc, Lord Kṛṣṇa destroyed whatever sinful reactions were left in them because of the curse of the brāhmaṇas. Nārada Muni explained to Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira that by entering Kṛṣṇa's body, Śiśupāla reentered Vaikuṇṭhaloka as the Lord's associate. Everyone had seen this incident.
Because of the increment in demoniac population, people have lost brahminical culture. Nor is there a kṣatriya government. Instead, the government is a democracy in which any śūdra can be voted into taking up the governmental reigns and capture the power to rule. Because of the poisonous effects of Kali-yuga, the śāstra (SB 12.2.13) says, dasyu-prāyeṣu rājasu: the government will adopt the policies of dasyus, or plunderers. Thus there will be no instructions from the brāhmaṇas, and even if there are brahminical instructions, there will be no kṣatriya rulers who can follow them. Aside from Satya-yuga, even formerly, in the days when demons were flourishing, Hiraṇyakaśipu planned to destroy the brahminical culture and the kṣatriya government and thus create chaos all over the world.
The picture of a proper human civilization is indirectly described here. In a perfect human civilization there must be a class of men fully trained as perfect brāhmaṇas. Similarly, there must be kṣatriyas to rule the country very nicely according to the injunctions of the śāstras, and there must be vaiśyas who can protect the cows. The word gāvaḥ indicates that cows should be given protection. Because the Vedic civilization is lost, cows are not protected, but instead indiscriminately killed in slaughterhouses. Such are the acts of demons. Therefore this is a demoniac civilization. The varṇāśrama-dharma mentioned here is essential for human civilization. Unless there is a brāhmaṇa to guide, a kṣatriya to rule perfectly, and a perfect vaiśya to produce food and protect the cows, how will people live peacefully? It is impossible.
Everything is done by the order of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Therefore one should not lament the birth and death of a living being, which have been arranged by the Supreme Lord. Lord Kṛṣṇa says in Bhagavad-gītā (15.15), sarvasya cāhaṁ hṛdi sanniviṣṭo mattaḥ smṛtir jñānam apohanaṁ ca: "I am seated in everyone's heart, and from Me come remembrance, knowledge and forgetfulness." One must act according to the direction of the Lord within the heart, but because the conditioned soul wants to act independently, the Lord gives him the facility to act and experience the reactions. The Lord says, sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja: (BG 18.66) "Give up all other duties and simply surrender unto Me." One who does not abide by the orders of the Supreme Personality of Godhead is given the facility to enjoy this material world. Instead of restricting him, the Lord gives the conditioned soul the opportunity to enjoy so that by mature experience, after many, many births (bahūnāṁ janmanām ante (BG 7.19)), he will understand that surrender to the lotus feet of Vāsudeva is the only duty of all living beings.
"A person who has broader intelligence, whether he be full of material desires, free from material desires, or desiring liberation, must by all means worship the supreme whole, the Personality of Godhead." Even if a person has material desires, instead of worshiping the demigods he should pray to the Supreme Lord so that his connection with the Supreme Lord will be established and he will be saved from becoming a demon or a nondevotee. In this regard, Śrīla Madhvācārya gives the following quotation from the Brahma-tarka:
- viṣṇoḥ prādhānyatas tathā
- jīvasya tad-adhīnatvān
- na bhinnādhikṛtaṁ vacaḥ
Since Viṣṇu is the Supreme, by worshiping Viṣṇu one can fulfill all one's desires. There is no need to divert one's attention to any demigod.
Being worshiped by sacrifices offered with great gifts by those who strictly followed the principles of varṇa and āśrama, Hiraṇyakaśipu, instead of offering shares of the oblations to the demigods, accepted them himself.
In spite of achieving the power to control in all directions and in spite of enjoying all types of dear sense gratification as much as possible, Hiraṇyakaśipu was dissatisfied because instead of controlling his senses he remained their servant.
Apparently Prahlāda Mahārāja was placed in circumstances in which he was always tortured by his father. In such material conditions, one cannot have an undisturbed mind, but since bhakti is unconditional (ahaituky apratihatā), Prahlāda Mahārāja was never disturbed by the chastisements of Hiraṇyakaśipu. On the contrary, the bodily symptoms of his ecstatic love for the Supreme Personality of Godhead turned the minds of his friends, who had also been born in atheistic families. Instead of being disturbed by the torments of his father, Prahlāda influenced these friends and cleansed their minds. A devotee is never contaminated by material conditions, but persons subjected to material conditions can become spiritually advanced and blissful upon seeing the behavior of a pure devotee.
Hiraṇyakaśipu affectionately took his son Prahlāda on his lap and then inquired from him what the best thing was that he had learned from his teachers. As usual, Prahlāda Mahārāja began praising the nine processes of devotional service, such as śravaṇam and kīrtanam. Thus the King of the demons, Hiraṇyakaśipu, being extremely angry, chastised the teachers, Ṣaṇḍa and Amarka, for having wrongly trained Prahlāda Mahārāja. The so-called teachers informed the King that Prahlāda Mahārāja was automatically a devotee and did not listen to their instructions. When they proved themselves innocent, Hiraṇyakaśipu inquired from Prahlāda where he had learned viṣṇu-bhakti. Prahlāda Mahārāja replied that those who are attached to family life do not develop Kṛṣṇa consciousness, either personally or collectively. Instead, they suffer repeated birth and death in this material world and continue simply chewing the chewed. Prahlāda explained that the duty of every man is to take shelter of a pure devotee and thus become eligible to understand Kṛṣṇa consciousness.
A devotee sees that every living being is part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa (mamaivāṁśo jīva-bhūtaḥ (15.7)). Therefore a devotee treats friends and enemies equally by trying to educate them both in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Of course, atheistic men do not follow the instructions of pure devotees, but instead consider a devotee their enemy. A devotee, however, never creates a situation of friendship and enmity. Although Prahlāda Mahārāja was obliged to hear the instructions of Ṣaṇḍa and Amarka, he did not like the philosophy of friends and enemies, which forms the basis of politics. He was not interested in this philosophy.
Hiraṇyakaśipu did not ask his young son anything that would be very difficult for him to answer; instead, he gave the boy a chance to speak plainly about whatever he thought might be best. Prahlāda Mahārāja, of course, being a perfect devotee, knew everything and could say what the best part of life is. In the Vedas it is said, yasmin vijñāte samam evaṁ vijñātaṁ bhavati: if one properly understands God, he can understand any subject matter very nicely. Sometimes we have to challenge big scientists and philosophers, but by the grace of Kṛṣṇa we emerge successful. It is impossible, practically speaking, for ordinary men to challenge scientists or philosophers concerning genuine knowledge, but a devotee can challenge them because the best of everything is known to a devotee by the grace of Kṛṣṇa.
"The humble sage, by virtue of true knowledge, sees with equal vision a learned and gentle brāhmaṇa, a cow, an elephant, a dog and a dog-eater (outcaste)." paṇḍitāḥ, those who are actually learned—the equipoised, advanced devotees who have full knowledge of everything—do not see any living entity as an enemy or friend. Instead, with broader vision, they see that everyone is part of Kṛṣṇa, as confirmed by Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu (jīvera 'svarūpa' haya-kṛṣṇera 'nitya-dāsa' (CC Madhya 20.108)). Every living entity, being part of the Supreme Lord, is meant to serve the Lord, just as every part of the body is meant to serve the whole body.
Demons think of everyone as a friend or enemy, but Vaiṣṇavas say that since everyone is a servant of the Lord, everyone is on the same platform. Therefore a Vaiṣṇava treats other living entities neither as friends nor as enemies, but instead tries to spread Kṛṣṇa consciousness, teaching everyone that we are all one as servants of the Supreme Lord but are uselessly wasting our valuable lives by creating nations, communities and other groups of friends and enemies. Everyone should come to the platform of Kṛṣṇa consciousness and thus feel oneness as a servant of the Lord. Although there are 8,400,000 species of life, a Vaiṣṇava feels this oneness. The Īśopaniṣad advises, ekatvam anupaśyataḥ (ISO 7). A devotee should see the Supreme Personality of Godhead to be situated in everyone's heart and should also see every living entity as an eternal servant of the Lord. This vision is called ekatvam, oneness. Although there is a relationship of master and servant, both master and servant are one because of their spiritual identity. This is also ekatvam. Thus the conception of ekatvam for the Vaiṣṇava is different from that of the Māyāvādī.
As soon as one is purified of material contamination, he is again attracted by Kṛṣṇa (sarvopādhi-vinirmuktaṁ tat-paratvena nirmalam (CC Madhya 19.170)). In the material world, everyone is contaminated by the dirt of sense gratification and is acting according to different designations, sometimes as a human being, sometimes a beast, sometimes a demigod or tree, and so on. One must be cleansed of all these designations. Then one will be naturally attracted to Kṛṣṇa. The bhakti process purifies the living entity of all unnatural attractions. When one is purified he is attracted by Kṛṣṇa and begins to serve Kṛṣṇa instead of serving māyā. This is his natural position. A devotee is attracted by Kṛṣṇa, whereas a nondevotee, being contaminated by the dirt of material enjoyment, is not.
Sometimes they give some talisman or blessing. Sometimes they attract materialistic persons by producing gold. Then they declare themselves God, and foolish materialists are attracted to them for economic development. As a result of this process of cheating, others are reluctant to accept a religious process, and instead they advise people in general to work for material advancement. This is going on all over the world. Not only now but since time immemorial, no one is interested in mokṣa, liberation. There are four principles—dharma (religion), artha (economic development), kāma (sense gratification) and mokṣa (liberation). People accept religion to become materially opulent. And why should one be materially opulent? For sense gratification. Thus people prefer these three mārgas, the three paths of materialistic life. No one is interested in liberation, and bhagavad-bhakti, devotional service to the Lord, is above even liberation. Therefore the process of devotional service, Kṛṣṇa consciousness, is extremely difficult to understand. This will be explained later by Prahlāda Mahārāja. The teachers Ṣaṇḍa and Amarka tried to induce Prahlāda Mahārāja to accept the materialistic way of life, but actually their attempt was a failure.
It is recommended that even if one commits offenses, one should continue chanting the holy name. In other words, the chanting of the holy name makes one offenseless. In the book Nāma-kaumudī it is recommended that if one is an offender at the lotus feet of a Vaiṣṇava, he should submit to that Vaiṣṇava and be excused; similarly, if one is an offender in chanting the holy name, he should submit to the holy name and thus be freed from his offenses. In this connection there is the following statement, spoken by Dakṣa to Lord Śiva: "I did not know the glories of your personality, and therefore I committed an offense at your lotus feet in the open assembly. You are so kind, however, that you did not accept my offense. Instead, when I was falling down because of accusing you, you saved me by your merciful glance. You are most great. Kindly excuse me and be satisfied with your own exalted qualities."
It is therefore recommended that initiated devotees follow the principles of Nārada Pañcarātra by worshiping the Deity in the temple. Especially for householder devotees who are opulent in material possessions, the path of Deity worship is strongly recommended. An opulent householder devotee who does not engage his hard-earned money in the service of the Lord is called a miser. One should not engage paid brāhmaṇas to worship the Deity. If one does not personally worship the Deity but engages paid servants instead, he is considered lazy, and his worship of the Deity is called artificial. An opulent householder can collect luxurious paraphernalia for Deity worship, and consequently for householder devotees the worship of the Deity is compulsory. In our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement there are brahmacārīs, gṛhasthas, vānaprasthas and sannyāsīs, but the Deity worship in the temple should be performed especially by the householders. The brahmacārīs can go with the sannyāsīs to preach, and the vānaprasthas should prepare themselves for the next status of renounced life, sannyāsa. Gṛhastha devotees, however, are generally engaged in material activities, and therefore if they do not take to Deity worship, their falling down is positively assured. Deity worship means following the rules and regulations precisely. That will keep one steady in devotional service. Generally householders have children, and then the wives of the householders should be engaged in caring for the children, just as women acting as teachers care for the children in a nursery school.
In tiffin hours, the hours when the teachers were absent from the classroom, the students called Prahlāda Mahārāja, wanting to play with him. As will be seen from the following verses, however, Prahlāda Mahārāja was not very much interested in playing. Instead, he wanted to utilize every moment for advancing in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Therefore, as indicated in this verse by the word kṛta-kṣaṇaiḥ, at the opportune moment when it was possible to preach about Kṛṣṇa consciousness, Prahlāda Mahārāja used the time as follows.
Materialistic persons take to so-called religion to get some blessings so that they can improve their economic position and enjoy the material world through sense gratification. But devotees like Prahlāda Mahārāja laugh at how foolish they are to be busy in a temporary life without knowledge of the soul's transmigration from one body to another. Materialistic persons are engaged in striving for temporary benefits, whereas persons advanced in spiritual knowledge, such as Prahlāda Mahārāja, are not interested in the materialistic way of life. Instead, they want to be elevated to an eternal life of knowledge and bliss. Therefore, as Kṛṣṇa is always compassionate to the fallen souls, His servants, the devotees of Lord Kṛṣṇa, are also interested in educating the entire populace in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. The mistake of materialistic life is understood by devotees, and therefore they smile upon it, considering it insignificant. Out of compassion, however, such devotees preach the gospel of Bhagavad-gītā all over the world.
This chapter describes Prahlāda Mahārāja's instructions to his class friends. In speaking to his friends, who were all sons of demons, Prahlāda Mahārāja stressed that every living entity, especially in human society, must be interested in spiritual realization from the very beginning of life. When human beings are children, they should be taught that the Supreme Personality of Godhead is the worshipable Deity for everyone. One should not be very much interested in material enjoyment; instead, one should be satisfied with whatever material profits are easily obtainable, and because the duration of one's life is very short, one should utilize every moment for spiritual advancement. One may wrongly think, "In the beginning of our lives let us enjoy material facilities, and in old age we may become Kṛṣṇa conscious."
The whole purpose of Vedic civilization and of reading the Vedas is to attain the perfect stage of devotional service in the human form of life. According to the Vedic system, therefore, from the very beginning of life the brahmacarya system is introduced so that from one's very childhood—from the age of five years—one can practice modifying one's human activities so as to engage perfectly in devotional service. As confirmed in Bhagavad-gītā (2.40), svalpam apy asya dharmasya trāyate mahato bhayāt: "Even a little advancement on this path can protect one from the most dangerous type of fear." Modern civilization, not referring to the verdicts of Vedic literature, is so cruel to the members of human society that instead of teaching children to become brahmacārīs, it teaches mothers to kill their children even in the womb, on the plea of curbing the increase of population. And if by chance a child is saved, he is educated only for sense gratification. Gradually, throughout the entire world, human society is losing interest in the perfection of life.
O my friends, sons of demons! In this material world, even those who are apparently advanced in education have the propensity to consider, "This is mine, and that is for others." Thus they are always engaged in providing the necessities of life to their families in a limited conception of family life, just like uneducated cats and dogs. They are unable to take to spiritual knowledge; instead, they are bewildered and overcome by ignorance.
The real vidvān is one who tries to understand his own position within this material world. For example, when Sanātana Gosvāmī submitted to the lotus feet of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, his first question was 'ke āmi', 'kene āmāya jāre tāpa-traya'. In other words, he wanted to know his constitutional position and why he was suffering from the threefold miseries of material existence. This is the process of education. If one does not ask, "Who am I? What is the goal of my life?" but instead follows the same animal propensities as cats and dogs, what is the use of his education? As discussed in the previous verse, a living being is entrapped by his fruitive activities, exactly like a silkworm trapped in its own cocoon. Foolish persons are generally encaged by their fruitive actions (karma) because of a strong desire to enjoy this material world. Such attracted persons become involved in society, community and nation and waste their time, not having profited from having obtained human forms. Especially in this age, Kali-yuga, great leaders, politicians, philosophers and scientists are all engaged in foolish activities, thinking, "This is mine, and this is yours."
It is stated here that this confidential knowledge is extremely difficult to understand, yet it is very easy to understand if one takes shelter of a pure devotee. This confidential knowledge is also mentioned at the end of Bhagavad-gītā, where the Lord says, sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja: (BG 18.66) "Abandon all varieties of religion and just surrender unto Me." This knowledge is an extremely confidential secret, but it can be understood if one approaches the Supreme Personality of Godhead through the bona fide agent, the spiritual master in the disciplic succession from Nārada. Prahlāda Mahārāja wanted to impress upon the sons of the demons that although such knowledge can be understood only by a saintly person like Nārada, they should not be disappointed, for if one takes shelter of Nārada instead of material teachers, this knowledge is possible to understand. Understanding does not depend upon high parentage. The living entity is certainly pure on the spiritual platform, and therefore anyone who attains the spiritual platform by the grace of the spiritual master can also understand this confidential knowledge.
One should not remain in a secluded place with a woman, even one's mother, sister, or daughter. Nonetheless, although one is strictly prohibited from staying with a woman in a secluded place, Nārada Muni gave shelter to Prahlāda Mahārāja's young mother, who rendered service to him with great devotion and faith. Does this mean that Nārada Muni transgressed the Vedic injunctions? Certainly he did not. Such injunctions are intended for mundane creatures, but Nārada Muni is transcendental to mundane categories. Nārada Muni is a great saint and is transcendentally situated. Therefore, although he was a young man, he could give shelter to a young woman and accept her service. Haridāsa Ṭhākura also spoke with a young woman, a prostitute, in the dead of night, but the woman could not deviate his mind. Instead, she became a Vaiṣṇavī, a pure devotee, by the benediction of Haridāsa Ṭhākura. Ordinary persons, however, should not imitate such highly elevated devotees. Ordinary persons must strictly observe the rules and regulations by staying aloof from the association of women. No one should imitate Nārada Muni or Haridāsa Ṭhākura.
Especially in this age, the concession is that simply by chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra (harer nāma harer nāma harer nāmaiva kevalam (CC Adi 17.21)) one revives his original relationship with God and thus becomes so happy that he does not want anything material. As enunciated by Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, na dhanaṁ na janaṁ na sundarīṁ kavitāṁ vā jagad-īśa kāmaye (Cc. Antya 20.29, Śikṣāṣṭaka 4). A very advanced devotee in Kṛṣṇa consciousness does not want riches, followers or possessions. Rāyaḥ kalatraṁ paśavaḥ sutādayo gṛhā mahī kuñjara-kośa-bhūtayaḥ. The satisfaction of possessing material opulences, although perhaps of a different standard, is available even in the lives of dogs and hogs, who cannot revive their eternal relationship with Kṛṣṇa. In human life, however, our eternal, dormant relationship with Kṛṣṇa is possible to revive. Therefore Prahlāda Mahārāja has described this life as arthadam. Consequently, instead of wasting our time for economic development, which cannot give us any happiness, if we simply try to revive our eternal relationship with Kṛṣṇa, we will properly utilize our lives.
"The mahā-bhāgavata, the advanced devotee, certainly sees everything mobile and immobile, but he does not exactly see their forms. Rather, everywhere he immediately sees manifest the form of the Supreme Lord." (CC Madhya 8.274) Even in this material world, a devotee does not see materially manifested things; instead he sees Govinda in everything. When he sees a tree or a human being, a devotee sees them in relation to Govinda. Govindam ādi-puruṣam: Govinda is the original source of everything.
The relationship between a pure devotee and the Supreme Personality of Godhead is extremely relishable. A devotee never claims to be very powerful himself; instead, he fully surrenders to the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa, being confident that in all dangerous conditions Kṛṣṇa will protect His devotee. Kṛṣṇa Himself says in Bhagavad-gītā (9.31), kaunteya pratijānīhi na me bhaktaḥ praṇaśyati: "O son of Kuntī, declare boldly that My devotee never perishes." The Lord requested Arjuna to declare this instead of declaring it Himself because sometimes Kṛṣṇa changes His view and therefore people might not believe Him. Thus Kṛṣṇa asked Arjuna to declare that a devotee of the Lord is never vanquished.
It is said in Hitopadeśa, upadeśo hi mūrkhāṇāṁ prakopāya na śāntaye. If good instructions are given to a foolish person, he does not take advantage of them, but becomes more and more angry. Prahlāda Mahārāja's authorized instructions to his father were not accepted by Hiraṇyakaśipu as truth; instead Hiraṇyakaśipu became increasingly angry at his great son, who was a pure devotee. This kind of difficulty always exists when a devotee preaches Kṛṣṇa consciousness to persons like Hiraṇyakaśipu, who are interested in money and women. (The word hiraṇya means "gold," and kaśipu refers to cushions or good bedding.) Moreover, a father does not like to be instructed by his son, especially if the father is a demon. Prahlāda Mahārāja's Vaiṣṇava preaching to his demoniac father was indirectly effective, for because of Hiraṇyakaśipu's excessive jealousy of Kṛṣṇa and His devotee, he was inviting Nṛsiṁha-deva to kill him very quickly. Thus he was expediting his being killed by the Lord Himself. Although Hiraṇyakaśipu was a demon, he is described here by the added word śrī. Why? The answer is that fortunately he had such a great devotee son as Prahlāda Mahārāja. Thus although he was a demon, he would attain salvation and return home, back to Godhead.
The Kinnaras said: O supreme controller, we are ever-existing servants of Your Lordship, but instead of rendering service to You, we were engaged by this demon in his service, constantly and without remuneration. This sinful man has now been killed by You. Therefore, O Lord Nṛsiṁha-deva, our master, we offer our respectful obeisances unto You. Please continue to be our patron.
To save oneself, one must take shelter of a pure devotee. Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura therefore says, chāḍiyā vaiṣṇava-sevā nistāra pāyeche kebā. If one wants to save himself from material nature's onslaughts, which arise because of the material body, one must become Kṛṣṇa conscious and try to fully understand Kṛṣṇa. As stated in Bhagavad-gītā (4.9), janma karma ca me divyam evaṁ yo vetti tattvataḥ. One should understand Kṛṣṇa in truth, and this one can do only by serving a pure devotee. Thus Prahlāda Mahārāja prays that Lord Nṛsiṁha-deva place him in touch with a pure devotee and servant instead of awarding him material opulence. Every intelligent man within this material world must follow Prahlāda Mahārāja. Mahājano yena gataḥ sa panthāḥ (CC Madhya 17.186). Prahlāda Mahārāja did not want to enjoy the estate left by his father; rather, he wanted to become a servant of the servant of the Lord (CC Madhya 13.80). The illusory human civilization that perpetually endeavors for happiness through material advancement is rejected by Prahlāda Mahārāja and those who strictly follow in his footsteps.
Neither the three modes of material nature (sattva-guṇa, rajo-guṇa and tamo-guṇa), nor the predominating deities controlling these three modes, nor the five gross elements, nor the mind, nor the demigods nor the human beings can understand Your Lordship, for they are all subjected to birth and annihilation. Considering this, the spiritually advanced have taken to devotional service. Such wise men hardly bother with Vedic study. Instead, they engage themselves in practical devotional service.
Lord Nṛsiṁha-deva wanted to bestow benedictions upon Prahlāda Mahārāja, one after another, but Prahlāda Mahārāja, thinking them impediments on the path of spiritual progress, did not accept any of them. Instead, he fully surrendered at the Lord's lotus feet. He said: "If anyone engaged in the devotional service of the Lord prays for personal sense gratification, he cannot be called a pure devotee or even a devotee. He may be called only a merchant engaged in the business of give and take. Similarly, a master who wants to please his servant after taking service from him is also not a real master." Prahlāda Mahārāja, therefore, did not ask anything from the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Rather, he said that if the Lord wanted to give him a benediction, he wanted the Lord to assure him that he would never be induced to take any benedictions for the sake of material desires. Exchanges of devotional service for lusty desires are always very prominent. As soon as lusty desires awaken, one's senses, mind, life, soul, religious principles, patience, intelligence, shyness, beauty, strength, memory and truthfulness are all vanquished. One can render unalloyed devotional service only when there are no material desires in one's mind.
The actual purpose of mystic yoga is to concentrate one's attention fully on the Personality of Godhead, Kṛṣṇa, and always think of Him (mad-gatenāntarātmanā). To attain such perfection, one must undergo a certain process—haṭha-yoga—and through this yoga system the practitioner achieves some uncommon mystic power. The asuras, however, instead of becoming devotees of Kṛṣṇa, utilize this mystic power for their personal sense gratification. Maya Dānava, for example, is mentioned here as mahā-yogī, a great mystic, but his business was to help the asuras. Nowadays we are actually seeing that there are some yogīs who cater to the senses of materialists, and there are imposters who advertise themselves as God. Maya Dānava was such a person, a god among the demons, and he could perform some wonderful feats, one of which is described here: he made a well filled with nectar and dipped the asuras into that nectarean well. This nectar was known as mṛta-sanjīvayitari, for it could bring a dead body to life. Mṛta-sanjīvayitari is also an Āyur-vedic preparation. It is a kind of liquor that invigorates even a person on the verge of death.
Indeed, it has been explained by Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. Jīvera 'svarūpa' haya-kṛṣṇera 'nitya-dāsa': (CC Madhya 20.108) the real occupational duty of the living entity is to serve the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Even if one prefers to deviate from this principle he remains a servant because that is his eternal position; but one serves māyā, the illusory, material energy. The Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, therefore, is an attempt to guide human society to serving the Personality of Godhead instead of serving the material world with no real profit. Our actual experience is that every man, animal, bird and beast—indeed, every living entity—is engaged in rendering service. Even though one's body or one's superficial religion may change, every living entity is always engaged in the service of someone. Therefore, the mentality of service is called the eternal occupational duty. This eternal occupational duty can be organized through the institution of varṇāśrama, in which there are four varṇas (brāhmaṇa, kṣatriya, vaiśya and śūdra) and four āśramas (brahmacarya, gṛhastha, vānaprastha and sannyāsa). Thus, Yudhiṣṭhira Mahārāja inquired from Nārada Muni about the principles of sanātana-dharma for the benefit of human society.
When one understands his real identity as a spiritual being, he can understand the supreme spiritual being, Kṛṣṇa, and the real happiness exchanged between Kṛṣṇa and one's self. It is very interesting to note how this verse points to the body's growth from the spirit soul. The modern materialistic scientist thinks that life grows from matter, but actually the fact is that matter grows from life. The life, or the spiritual soul, is compared herein to water, from which clumps of matter grow in the form of grass. One who is ignorant of scientific knowledge of the spirit soul does not look inside the body to find happiness in the soul; instead, he goes outside to search for happiness, just as a deer without knowledge of the water beneath the grass goes out to the desert to find water. The Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is trying to remove the ignorance of misled human beings who are trying to find water outside the jurisdiction of life. Raso vai saḥ. Raso 'ham apsu kaunteya (BG 7.8). The taste of water is Kṛṣṇa. To quench one's thirst, one must taste water by association with Kṛṣṇa. This is the Vedic injunction.
The honey gathered in the comb is taken away by force. Therefore one who accumulates money should realize that he may be harassed by the government or by thieves or even killed by enemies. Especially in this age of Kali-yuga, it is said that instead of protecting the money of the citizens, the government itself will take away the money with the force of law. The learned brāhmaṇa had therefore decided that he should not accumulate any money. One should own as much as he immediately needs. There is no need to keep a big balance at hand, along with the fear that it may be plundered by the government or by thieves.
A person who is actually a devotee of Kṛṣṇa does not care about so-called public opinion and Vedic or philosophical literatures. Prahlāda Mahārāja, who is such a devotee, always defied the false instructions of his father and the so-called teachers who were appointed to teach him. Instead, he simply followed the instructions of Nārada Muni, his guru, and thus he always remained a stalwart devotee. This is the nature of an intelligent devotee. The Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam instructs, yajñaiḥ saṅkīrtana-prāyair yajanti hi sumedhasaḥ (SB 11.5.32). One who is actually very intelligent must join the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, realizing his own self as an eternal servant of Kṛṣṇa, and thus practice constant chanting of the holy name of the Lord—Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare/ Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare.
Nārada Muni replied: My dear King, those who stay at home as householders must act to earn their livelihood, and instead of trying to enjoy the results of their work themselves, they should offer these results to Kṛṣṇa, Vāsudeva. How to satisfy Vāsudeva in this life can be perfectly understood through the association of great devotees of the Lord.
One must find some time for hearing Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam and Bhagavad-gītā. This is Vedic culture. One should work eight hours at the most to earn his livelihood, and either in the afternoon or in the evening a householder should associate with devotees to hear about the incarnations of Kṛṣṇa and His activities and thus be gradually liberated from the clutches of māyā. However, instead of finding time to hear about Kṛṣṇa, the householders, after working hard in offices and factories, find time to go to a restaurant or a club where instead of hearing about Kṛṣṇa and His activities they are very much pleased to hear about the political activities of demons and nondevotees and to enjoy sex, wine, women and meat and in this way waste their time. This is not gṛhastha life, but demoniac life. The Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, however, with its centers all over the world, gives such fallen and condemned persons an opportunity to hear about Kṛṣṇa.
Certainly one requires some means of livelihood, and according to one's varṇa and āśrama this means of livelihood is prescribed in the śāstras. One should be satisfied with this. Therefore, instead of hankering for more and more money, a sincere devotee of the Lord tries to invent some ways to earn his livelihood, and when he does so Kṛṣṇa helps him. Earning one's livelihood, therefore, is not a problem. The real problem is how to get free from the bondage of birth, death and old age. Attaining this freedom, and not inventing unnecessary necessities, is the basic principle of Vedic civilization. One should be satisfied with whatever means of life comes automatically. The modern materialistic civilization is just the opposite of the ideal civilization. Every day the so-called leaders of modern society invent something contributing to a cumbersome way of life that implicates people more and more in the cycle of birth, death, old age and disease.
Outcastes or untouchable caṇḍālas should also be provided with the necessities for life. The word used in this connection is yathā, which means "as much as deserved." The outcastes should not be given money with which to indulge in more than they need, for otherwise they will misuse it. At the present moment, for example, low-class men are generally paid quite amply, but instead of using their money to cultivate knowledge and advance in life, such low-class men use their extra money for wine-drinking and similar sinful activities. As mentioned in Bhagavad-gītā (4.13), cātur-varṇyaṁ mayā sṛṣṭaṁ guṇa-karma-vibhāgaśaḥ: there must be four divisions of human society according to the work and qualities of men. Men with the lowest qualities cannot do any work that requires higher intelligence. However, although such a division of men must exist according to their quality and work, it is suggested herewith that everyone must have the necessities of life. The communists of the present day are in favor of supplying the necessities of life to everyone, but they consider only the human beings and not the lower animals. The Bhāgavatam's principles are so broad, however, that it recommends that the necessities of life be supplied to everyone, man or animal, regardless of good or bad qualities.
As stated in Bhagavad-gītā (3.9), yajñārthāt karmaṇo 'nyatra loko 'yaṁ karma-bandhanaḥ: all fruitive activities should be performed for sacrifice, which should be directed toward pleasing Kṛṣṇa. As stated elsewhere in Bhagavad-gītā (5.29), bhoktāraṁ yajña-tapasāṁ sarva-loka-maheśvaram: He is the Supreme Lord and enjoyer of everything. However, although sacrifice may be offered to please Kṛṣṇa, He is more pleased when grains and ghee, instead of being offered in the fire, are prepared as prasāda and distributed, first to the brāhmaṇas and then to others. This system pleases Kṛṣṇa more than anything else. Furthermore, at the present time there is very little chance to offer sacrifices by pouring oblations of food grains and ghee into the fire. Especially in India, there is practically no ghee; for everything that should be done with ghee, people use a certain type of oil preparation. Oil, however, is never recommended for offering in a sacrificial fire. In Kali-yuga, the available quantity of food grains and ghee is gradually diminishing, and people are embarrassed that they cannot produce sufficient ghee and food grains.
In this regard, it may be mentioned that brāhmaṇas in Vṛndāvana who are karma-kāṇḍīs and jñāna-kāṇḍīs sometimes decline to accept invitations to our temple because our temple is known as the aṅgarejī temple, or "Anglican temple." But in accordance with the evidence given in the śāstra and the example set by Advaita Ācārya, we give prasāda to devotees regardless of whether they come from India, Europe or America. It is the conclusion of the śāstra that instead of feeding many jñāna-kāṇḍī or karma-kāṇḍī brāhmaṇas, it is better to feed a pure Vaiṣṇava, regardless of where he comes from. This is also confirmed in Bhagavad-gītā (9.30):
- api cet su-durācāro
- bhajate mām ananya-bhāk
- sādhur eva sa mantavyaḥ
- samyag vyavasito hi saḥ
"Even if one commits the most abominable actions, if he is engaged in devotional service he is to be considered saintly because he is properly situated." Thus it doesn't matter whether a devotee comes from a brāhmaṇa family or non-brāhmaṇa family; if he is fully devoted to Kṛṣṇa, he is a sādhu.
"Learned transcendentalists who know the Absolute Truth call this nondual substance Brahman, Paramātmā or Bhagavān." Unless one is fully convinced of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, one has the tendency to become an impersonalist yogī searching for the Supreme Lord within the core of his heart (dhyānāvasthita-tad-gatena manasā paśyanti yaṁ yoginaḥ (SB 12.13.1)). Here the chanting of oṁkāra is recommended because in the beginning of transcendental realization, instead of chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra, one may chant oṁkāra (praṇava). There is no difference between the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra and oṁkāra because both of them are sound representations of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. praṇavaḥ sarva-vedeṣu. In all Vedic literatures, the sound vibration oṁkāra is the beginning.
Some of them give special importance to the body of the poor man, accepting him as daridra-nārāyaṇa, as if Nārāyaṇa had a material body. Many other sannyāsīs stress the importance of the social position of the body as a brāhmaṇa, kṣatriya, vaiśya or śūdra. Such sannyāsīs are considered the greatest rascals (asattamāḥ). They are shameless because they have not yet understood the difference between the body and the soul and instead have accepted the body of a brāhmaṇa to be a brāhmaṇa. Brahmanism (brāhmaṇya) consists of the knowledge of Brahman. But actually the body of a brāhmaṇa is not Brahman. Similarly, the body is neither rich nor poor. If the body of a poor man were daridra-nārāyaṇa, this would mean that the body of a rich man, on the contrary, must be dhanī-nārāyaṇa. Therefore sannyāsīs who do not know the meaning of Nārāyaṇa, those who regard the body as Brahman or as Nārāyaṇa, are described here as asattamāḥ, the most abominable rascals. Following the bodily concept of life, such sannyāsīs make various programs to serve the body. They conduct farcical missions consisting of so-called religious activities meant to mislead all of human society. These sannyāsīs have been described herein as apatrapaḥ and asattamāḥ—shameless and fallen from spiritual life.
SB Canto 8
This is the unique position of a devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Although the King was cursed, he welcomed the curse because a devotee is always aware that nothing can happen without the desire of the Supreme Lord. Although the King was not at fault, Agastya Muni cursed him, and when this happened the King considered it to be due to his past misdeeds. Tat te 'nukampāṁ susamīkṣamāṇaḥ (SB 10.14.8). This is a practical example of how a devotee thinks. He regards any reverses in life as blessings of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Therefore, instead of being agitated by such reverses, he continues his activities of devotional service, and Kṛṣṇa takes care of him and enables him to be promoted to the spiritual world, back to Godhead. If a devotee has to suffer the reactions of his past misdeeds, the Supreme Lord arranges for him to be given only a token of these reactions, and very soon he is freed from all the reactions of material contamination. One should therefore adhere to devotional service, and the Lord Himself will very soon see to one's promotion to the spiritual world. A devotee should not be disturbed by unfortunate circumstances, but must continue his regular program, depending on the Lord for everything. The word upadhārayan, "considering," is very significant in this verse. This word indicates that a devotee knows what is what; he understands what is happening in material, conditional life.
Of course, simply drinking milk will not make one immortal, but it can increase the duration of one's life. In modern civilization, men do not think milk to be important, and therefore they do not live very long. Although in this age men can live up to one hundred years, their duration of life is reduced because they do not drink large quantities of milk. This is a sign of Kali-yuga. In Kali-yuga, instead of drinking milk, people prefer to slaughter an animal and eat its flesh. The Supreme Personality of Godhead, in His instructions of Bhagavad-gītā, advises go-rakṣya, which means cow protection. The cow should be protected, milk should be drawn from the cows, and this milk should be prepared in various ways. One should take ample milk, and thus one can prolong one's life, develop his brain, execute devotional service, and ultimately attain the favor of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. As it is essential to get food grains and water by digging the earth, it is also essential to give protection to the cows and take nectarean milk from their milk bags.
The leaders of the demons thought it unwise to hold the tail, the inauspicious portion of the snake. Instead, they wanted to hold the front, which had been taken by the Personality of Godhead and the demigods, because that portion was auspicious and glorious. Thus the demons, on the plea that they were all highly advanced students of Vedic knowledge and were all famous for their birth and activities, protested that they wanted to hold the front of the snake.
"Those miscreants who are grossly foolish, lowest among mankind, whose knowledge is stolen by illusion, and who partake of the atheistic nature of demons, do not surrender unto Me." Āsuraṁ bhāvam refers to not accepting the existence of God or the transcendental instructions of the Personality of Godhead. Bhagavad-gītā clearly consists of transcendental instructions imparted directly by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. But asuras, instead of accepting these instructions directly, make commentaries according to their own whimsical ways and mislead everyone, without profit even for themselves. One should therefore be very careful of demoniac, godless persons. According to the words of Lord Kṛṣṇa, even if a godless demon is very well educated, he must be considered a mūḍha, narādhama and māyayāpahṛta jñāna.
One may question that since the Supreme Personality of Godhead was personally present, why did He accompany all the demigods and people in general to take shelter of Lord Sadāśiva, instead of intervening Himself. In this connection Śrīla Madhvācārya warns:
- rudrasya yaśaso 'rthāya
- svayaṁ viṣṇur viṣaṁ vibhuḥ
- na sañjahre samartho 'pi
- vāyuṁ coce praśāntaye
Lord Viṣṇu was competent to rectify the situation, but in order to give credit to Lord Śiva, who later drank all the poison and kept it in his neck, Lord Viṣṇu did not take action.
Even a little work done in Kṛṣṇa consciousness is a permanent asset and is all-good because it is done for Kṛṣṇa, the all-good Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is everyone's friend (suhṛdaṁ sarva-bhūtānām). The Supreme Personality of Godhead is the only enjoyer and proprietor of everything (bhoktāraṁ yajña-tapasāṁ sarva-loka-maheśvaram (BG 5.29)). Therefore any activity performed for the Supreme Lord is permanent. As a result of such activities, the performer is immediately recognized. Na ca tasmān manuṣyeṣu kaścin me priya-kṛttamaḥ (BG 18.69). Such a devotee, because of full knowledge of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is immediately transcendental, although he may superficially appear to be engaged in materialistic activities. The only distinction between materialistic activity and spiritual activity is that material activity is performed only to satisfy one's own senses whereas spiritual activity is meant to satisfy the transcendental senses of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. By spiritual activity everyone factually benefits, whereas by materialistic activity no one benefits and instead one becomes entangled in the laws of karma.
"Kṛṣṇa says, 'If one engages in My transcendental loving service but at the same time wants the opulence of material enjoyment, he is very, very foolish. Indeed, he is just like a person who gives up ambrosia to drink poison. Since I am very intelligent, why should I give this fool material prosperity? Instead I shall induce him to take the nectar of the shelter of My lotus feet and make him forget illusory material enjoyment.' " If a devotee maintains some material desire and at the same time very sincerely desires to engage at the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa may directly give him unalloyed devotional service and take away all his material desires and possessions. This is the Lord's special favor to devotees. Otherwise, if one takes to Kṛṣṇa's devotional service but still has material desires to fulfill, he may become free from all material desires, as Dhruva Mahārāja did, but this may take some time. However, if a very sincere devotee wants only Kṛṣṇa's lotus feet, Kṛṣṇa directly gives him the position of śuddha-bhakti, unalloyed devotional service.
Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura remarks that Bali Mahārāja remained silent at a critical point. How could he disobey the instruction of Śukrācārya, his spiritual master? It is the duty of such a sober personality as Bali Mahārāja to abide by the orders of his spiritual master immediately, as his spiritual master had advised. But Bali Mahārāja also considered that Śukrācārya was no longer to be accepted as a spiritual master, for he had deviated from the duty of a spiritual master. According to śāstra, the duty of the guru is to take the disciple back home, back to Godhead. If he is unable to do so and instead hinders the disciple in going back to Godhead, he should not be a guru. Gurur na sa syāt (SB 5.5.18). One should not become a guru if he cannot enable his disciple to advance in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. The goal of life is to become a devotee of Lord Kṛṣṇa so that one may be freed from the bondage of material existence (tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti mam eti so 'rjuna (BG 4.9)). The spiritual master helps the disciple attain this stage by developing Kṛṣṇa consciousness.
O best of the brāhmaṇas, certainly the great demoniac kings who were never reluctant to fight enjoyed this world, but in due course of time everything they had was taken away, except their reputation, by which they continue to exist. In other words, one should try to achieve a good reputation instead of anything else.
In this regard, Cāṇakya Paṇḍita (Cāṇakya-śloka 34) also says, āyuṣaḥ kṣaṇa eko 'pi na labhya svarṇa-koṭibhiḥ. The duration of one's life is extremely short, but if in that short lifetime one can do something that enhances his good reputation, that may continue to exist for many millions of years. Bali Mahārāja therefore decided not to follow his spiritual master's instruction that he deny his promise to Vāmanadeva; instead, he decided to give the land according to the promise and be everlastingly celebrated as one of the twelve mahājanas (balir vaiyāsakir vayam).
Śrī Śukadeva Gosvāmī continued: Thereafter, the spiritual master, Śukrācārya, being inspired by the Supreme Lord, cursed his exalted disciple Bali Mahārāja, who was so magnanimous and fixed in truthfulness that instead of respecting his spiritual master's instructions, he wanted to disobey his order.
Bali Mahārāja's wife, who was most intelligent, supported the arrest of her husband and accused him of having no intelligence because he had claimed proprietorship of the property of the Lord. Such a claim is a sign of demoniac life. Although the demigods, who are officials appointed by the Lord for management, are attached to materialistic enjoyment, they never claim to be proprietors of the universe, for they know that the actual proprietor of everything is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This is the qualification of the demigods. But the demons, instead of accepting the exclusive proprietorship of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, claim the property of the universe for themselves through demarcations of nationalism. "This part is mine, and that part is yours," they say. "This part I can give in charity, and this part I can keep for my enjoyment." These are all demoniac conceptions. This is described in Bhagavad-gītā (16.13): idam adya mayā labdham imaṁ prāpsye manoratham. "Thus far I have acquired so much money and land. Now I have to add more and more. In this way I shall be the greatest proprietor of everything. Who can compete with me?" These are all demoniac conceptions.
Devotees like Dhruva Mahārāja, who was given unlimited material opulence, have the special mercy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Once Kuvera wanted to give Dhruva Mahārāja a benediction, but although Dhruva Mahārāja could have asked him for any amount of material opulence, he instead begged Kuvera that he might continue his devotional service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. When a devotee is fixed in his devotional service, there is no need for the Lord to deprive him of his material opulences. The Supreme Personality of Godhead never takes away material opulences achieved because of devotional service, although He sometimes takes away opulences achieved by pious activities. He does this to make a devotee prideless or put him in a better position in devotional service. If a special devotee is meant for preaching but does not give up his family life or material opulences to take to the service of the Lord, the Lord surely takes away his material opulences and establishes him in devotional service. Thus the pure devotee becomes fully engaged in propagating Kṛṣṇa consciousness.
Bali Mahārāja was transferred from the heavenly planet to the planet Sutala, which is hundreds of times better than heaven, as indicated by the words svargibhiḥ prārthyam. When the Supreme Personality of Godhead deprives His devotee of material opulences, this does not mean that the Lord puts him into poverty; rather, the Lord promotes him to a higher position. The Supreme Personality of Godhead did not ask Bali Mahārāja to separate from his family; instead, the Lord allowed him to stay with his family members (jñātibhiḥ parivāritaḥ).
"In this age of quarrel and hypocrisy the only means of deliverance is chanting the holy name of the Lord. There is no other way. There is no other way. There is no other way." (Bṛhan-nāradīya Purāṇa 38.126) In this age of Kali, it is extremely difficult to perform Vedic ritualistic ceremonies or sacrifices perfectly. Hardly anyone can chant the Vedic mantras with perfect pronunciation or accumulate the paraphernalia for Vedic performances. Therefore the sacrifice recommended in this age is saṅkīrtana, constant chanting of the holy name of the Lord. Yajñaiḥ saṅkīrtana-prāyair yajanti hi sumedhasaḥ (SB 11.5.29). Instead of wasting time performing Vedic sacrifices, those who are intelligent, those who possess good brain substance, should take to the chanting of the Lord's holy name and thus perform sacrifice perfectly. I have seen that many religious leaders are addicted to performing yajñas and spending hundreds and thousands of rupees for imperfect sacrificial performances.
SB Canto 9
Because Manu had no issue, he was pleased at the birth of the child, even though a daughter, and gave her the name Ilā. Later, however, he was not very satisfied to see the daughter instead of a son. Because he had no issue, he was certainly very glad at the birth of Ilā, but his pleasure was temporary.
Although Pṛṣadhra had committed the sin unknowingly, his family priest, Vasiṣṭha, cursed him, saying, "In your next life you shall not be able to become a kṣatriya. Instead, you shall take birth as a śūdra because of killing the cow."
It appears that Vasiṣṭha was not free from tamo-guṇa, the mode of ignorance. As the family priest or spiritual master of Pṛṣadhra, Vasiṣṭha should have taken Pṛṣadhra's offense very lightly, but instead Vasiṣṭha cursed him to become a śūdra. It is the duty of a family priest not to curse a disciple but to give him relief through the performance of some sort of atonement. Vasiṣṭha, however, did just the opposite. Therefore Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura says that he was durmati; in other words, his intelligence was not very good.
"One who knows the transcendental nature of My appearance and activities does not, upon leaving the body, take his birth again in this material world, but attains My eternal abode, O Arjuna." Pṛṣadhra, because of his karma, was cursed to take his next birth as a śūdra, but because he took to saintly life, specifically concentrating his mind always upon the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he became a pure devotee. Immediately after giving up his body in the fire, he reached the spiritual world, as mentioned in Bhagavad-gītā (mām eti), as a result of his devotional situation. Devotional service performed by thinking of the Supreme Personality of Godhead is so powerful that although Pṛṣadhra was cursed he avoided the terrible consequence of becoming a śūdra and instead returned home, back to Godhead. As stated in Brahma-saṁhitā (5.54):
- yas tv indra-gopam athavendram aho sva-karma-
- bandhānurūpa-phala-bhājanam ātanoti
- karmāṇi nirdahati kintu ca bhakti-bhājāṁ
- govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi
Those who engage in devotional service are unaffected by the results of their material activities. Otherwise, everyone, from the smallest microbe up to the King of heaven, Indra, is subject to the laws of karma. A pure devotee, being always engaged in the service of the Lord, is exempt from these laws.
After receiving obeisances from his daughter, the King, instead of offering blessings to her, appeared very displeased and spoke as follows.
The son of Manu was Nabhaga, and his son Nābhāga lived for many years in the gurukula. In Nābhāga's absence, his brothers did not consider his share of the kingdom, but instead divided the property among themselves. When Nābhāga returned home, his brothers bestowed upon him their father as his share, but when Nābhāga went to his father and told him about the dealings of the brothers, his father informed him that this was cheating and advised him that for his livelihood he should go to the sacrificial arena and describe two mantras to be chanted there. Nābhāga executed the order of his father, and thus Aṅgirā and other great saintly persons gave him all the money collected in that sacrifice. To test Nābhāga, Lord Śiva challenged his claim to the wealth, but when Lord Śiva was satisfied by Nābhāga's behavior, Lord Śiva offered him all the riches.
When one performs ritualistic sacrifices as prescribed in the Vedas, one needs expert brāhmaṇas known as yājñika-brāhmaṇas. In Kali-yuga, however, there is a scarcity of such brāhmaṇas. Therefore in Kali-yuga the sacrifice recommended in śāstra is saṅkīrtana-yajña (yajñaiḥ saṅkīrtana-prāyair yajanti hi sumedhasaḥ (SB 11.5.32)). Instead of spending money unnecessarily on performing yajñas impossible to perform in this age of Kali because of the scarcity of yājñika-brāhmaṇas, one who is intelligent performs saṅkīrtana-yajña. Without properly performed yajñas to satisfy the Supreme Personality of Godhead, there will be scarcity of rain (yajñād bhavati parjanyaḥ (BG 3.14)). Therefore the performance of yajña is essential. Without yajña there will be a scarcity of rain, and because of this scarcity, no food grains will be produced, and there will be famines.
Mahārāja Ambarīṣa, you have invited me to eat as a guest, but instead of feeding me, you yourself have eaten first. Because of your misbehavior, I shall show you something to punish you.
Knowing that she was pregnant, the co-wives of the wife of Bāhuka conspired to give her poison with her food, but it did not act. Instead, the son was born along with the poison. Therefore he became famous as Sagara ("one who is born with poison"). Sagara later became the emperor. The place known as Gaṅgāsāgara was excavated by his sons.
Sagara Mahārāja, following the order of his spiritual master, Aurva, did not kill the uncivilized men like the Tālajaṅghas, Yavanas, Śakas, Haihayas and Barbaras. Instead, some of them he made dress awkwardly, some of them he shaved clean but allowed to wear mustaches, some of them he left wearing loose hair, some he half shaved, some he left without underwear, and some without external garments. Thus these different clans were made to dress differently, but King Sagara did not kill them.
This is the mentality of a pure devotee, who does not want anything, material or spiritual, from the Personality of Godhead. Our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is therefore called kṛṣṇa-bhāvanāmṛta-saṅgha, the association of persons who are simply satisfied in thoughts of Kṛṣṇa. Being absorbed in thoughts of Kṛṣṇa is neither expensive nor troublesome. Kṛṣṇa says, man-manā bhava mad-bhakto mad-yājī māṁ namaskuru: (BG 18.65) "Engage your mind always in thinking of Me, offer obeisances and worship Me." (BG 9.34) Anyone can always think of Kṛṣṇa, without difficulties or obstacles. This is called kṛṣṇa-bhāvanāmṛta. One who is absorbed in kṛṣṇa-bhāvanāmṛta has no material benefits to ask from Kṛṣṇa. Instead, such a person prays to the Lord for the benediction of being able to spread His glories all over the world. Mama janmani janmanīśvare bhavatād bhaktir ahaitukī tvayi (Cc. Antya 20.29, Śikṣāṣṭaka 4). A Kṛṣṇa conscious person does not even want to stop his cycle of birth and death. He simply prays, "I may take birth as You like, but my only prayer is that I may be engaged in Your service."
When Dhruva Mahārāja was offered a benediction by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he replied, "O my Lord, I am fully satisfied. I do not need any material benediction." Similarly, when Prahlāda Mahārāja was offered a benediction by Lord Nṛsiṁha-deva, he also refused to accept it and instead declared that a devotee should not be like a vaṇik, a mercantile man who gives something in exchange for some profit. One who becomes a devotee for some material profit is not a pure devotee. Brāhmaṇas are always enlightened by the Supreme Personality of Godhead within the heart (sarvasya cāhaṁ hṛdi sanniviṣṭo mattaḥ smṛtir jñānam apohanaṁ ca (BG 15.15)). And because the brāhmaṇas and Vaiṣṇavas are always directed by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, they are not greedy for material wealth. What is absolutely necessary they possess, but they do not want an expanded kingdom. An example of this was given by Vāmanadeva. Acting as a brahmacārī, Lord Vāmanadeva wanted only three paces of land. Aspiring to possess more and more for personal sense gratification is simply ignorance, and this ignorance is conspicuous by its absence from the heart of a brāhmaṇa or Vaiṣṇava.
Mahārāja Nimi, being a self-realized soul, considered that this life is flickering. Therefore, instead of waiting long for Vasiṣṭha, he began performing the sacrifice with other priests.
Tārā was married to Bṛhaspati, and therefore as a chaste woman she should have been impregnated by him. But instead she preferred to be impregnated by Soma, the moon-god, and therefore she was unchaste. Although Bṛhaspati accepted Tārā from Brahmā, when he saw that she was pregnant he wanted her to deliver a son immediately. Tārā certainly very much feared her husband, and she thought she might be punished after giving birth. Thus Bṛhaspati assured her that he would not punish her, for although she was unchaste and had become pregnant illicitly, he wanted a son.
The Vedic fire for performing yajña was not ignited with ordinary matches or similar devices. Rather, the Vedic sacrificial fire was ignited by the araṇis, or two sacred pieces of wood, which produced fire by friction with a third. Such a fire is necessary for the performance of yajña. If successful, a yajña will fulfill the desire of its performer. Thus Purūravā took advantage of the process of yajña to fulfill his lusty desires. He thought of the lower araṇi as Urvaśī, the upper one as himself, and the middle one as his son. A relevant Vedic mantra quoted herein by Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura is śamī-garbhād agniṁ mantha. A similar mantra is urvaśyām urasi purūravāḥ. Purūravā wanted to have children continuously by the womb of Urvaśī. His only ambition was to have sex life with Urvaśī and thereby get a son. In other words, he had so much lust in his heart that even while performing yajña he thought of Urvaśī, instead of thinking of the master of yajña, Yajñeśvara, Lord Viṣṇu.
A brāhmaṇa is highly qualified when he can control his senses and mind, when he is a learned scholar in spiritual science and when he is tolerant and forgiving. A kṣatriya, however, is highly qualified when he is fierce in giving punishment to wrongdoers. These qualities are stated in Bhagavad-gītā (18.42-43). Because Satyavatī, instead of eating her own oblation, had eaten that which was meant for her mother, she would give birth to a son imbued with the kṣatriya spirit. This was undesirable. The son of a brāhmaṇa is generally expected to become a brāhmaṇa, but if such a son becomes fierce like a kṣatriya, he is designated according to the description of the four varṇas in Bhagavad-gītā (cātur-varṇyaṁ mayā sṛṣṭaṁ guṇa-karma-vibhāgaśaḥ (BG 4.13)). If the son of a brāhmaṇa does not become like a brāhmaṇa, he may be called a kṣatriya, vaiśya or śūdra, according to his qualifications. The basic principle for dividing society is not a person's birth but his qualities and actions.
As supplying butter to a fire does not diminish the fire but instead increases it more and more, the endeavor to stop lusty desires by continual enjoyment can never be successful. (In fact, one must voluntarily cease from material desires.)
Prabodhānanda Sarasvatī said, viśvaṁ pūrṇa-sukhāyate: when one becomes Kṛṣṇa conscious by the mercy of Lord Caitanya, for him the entire world appears happy, and he has nothing for which to hanker. On the brahma-bhūta (SB 4.30.20) stage, or the platform of spiritual realization, there is no lamentation and no material hankering (na śocati na kāṅkṣati (BG 18.54)). As long as one lives in the material world, actions and reactions will continue, but when one is unaffected by such material actions and reactions, he is to be considered free from the danger of being victimized by material desires. The symptoms of those who are satiated with lusty desires are described in this verse. As explained by Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura, when one is not envious even of his enemy, does not expect honor from anyone, but instead desires all well-being even for his enemy, he is understood to be a paramahaṁsa, one who has fully subdued the lusty desires for sense gratification.
The son of Bharadvāja was Manyu, and Manyu's sons were Bṛhatkṣatra, Jaya, Mahāvīrya, Nara and Garga. Of these five, Nara had a son named Saṅkṛti, who had two sons, named Guru and Rantideva. As an exalted devotee, Rantideva saw every living entity in relationship with the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and therefore he completely engaged his mind, his words and his very self in the service of the Supreme Lord and His devotees. Rantideva was so exalted that he would sometimes give away his own food in charity, and he and his family would fast. Once, after Rantideva spent forty-eight days fasting, not even drinking water, excellent food made with ghee was brought to him, but when he was about to eat it a brāhmaṇa guest appeared. Rantideva, therefore, did not eat the food, but instead immediately offered a portion of it to the brāhmaṇa. When the brāhmaṇa left and Rantideva was just about to eat the remnants of the food, a śūdra appeared. Rantideva therefore divided the remnants between the śūdra and himself. Again, when he was just about to eat the remnants of the food, another guest appeared. Rantideva therefore gave the rest of the food to the new guest and was about to content himself with drinking the water to quench his thirst, but this also was precluded, for a thirsty guest came and Rantideva gave him the water. This was all ordained by the Supreme Personality of Godhead just to glorify His devotee and show how tolerant a devotee is in rendering service to the Lord. The Supreme Personality of Godhead, being extremely pleased with Rantideva, entrusted him with very confidential service. The special power to render the most confidential service is entrusted by the Supreme Personality of Godhead to a pure devotee, not to ordinary devotees.
"Whenever and wherever there is a decline in religious practice, O descendant of Bharata, and a predominant rise of irreligion—at that time I descend Myself." The real dharma is to surrender unto Kṛṣṇa, but the rebellious living entity, instead of surrendering to Kṛṣṇa, engages in adharma, in a struggle for existence to become like Kṛṣṇa. Therefore out of compassion Kṛṣṇa creates this material world to give the living entity a chance to understand his real position. Bhagavad-gītā and similar Vedic literatures are presented so that the living being may understand his relationship with Kṛṣṇa. Vedaiś ca sarvair aham eva vedyaḥ (BG 15.15). All these Vedic literatures are meant to enable the human being to understand what he is, what his actual position is, and what his relationship is with the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This is called brahma-jijñāsā. Every conditioned soul is struggling, but human life provides the best chance for him to understand his position. Therefore this verse says, anugrahas tan-nivṛtteḥ, indicating that the false life of repeated birth and death must be stopped and the conditioned soul should be educated. This is the purpose of the creation.
Such endeavors are jagato'hitaḥ; that is, they are meant for the misfortune of the people in general. Kṣayāya: such activities lead to annihilation. One who understands the purpose of Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, should seriously understand the importance of the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement and seriously take part in it. One should not endeavor for ugra-karma, or unnecessary work for sense gratification. Nūnaṁ pramattaḥ kurute vikarma yad indriya-prītaya āpṛṇoti (SB 5.5.4). Simply for sense gratification, people make plans for material happiness. Māyā-sukhāya bharam udvahato vimūḍhān (SB 7.9.43). They do this because they are all vimūḍhas, rascals. For flickering happiness, people waste their human energy, not understanding the importance of the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement but instead accusing the simple devotees of brainwashing. Demons may falsely accuse the preachers of the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, but Kṛṣṇa will arrange a fight between the demons in which all their military power will be engaged and both parties of demons will be annihilated.
Therefore the beauty of Kṛṣṇa, especially the beauty of His face, is described here. At the end of the Ninth Canto, in the Twenty-fourth Chapter, we find a hint of Kṛṣṇa's beauty. Now we are proceeding to the Tenth Canto, which is considered Kṛṣṇa's head. The entire Śrīmad-Bhāgavata Purāṇa is the embodiment of Kṛṣṇa's form, and the Tenth Canto is His face. This verse gives a hint of how beautiful His face is. Kṛṣṇa's smiling face, with His cheeks, His lips, the ornaments in His ears, His chewing of betel nuts—all this was minutely observed by the gopīs, who thus enjoyed transcendental bliss, so much so that they were never fully satisfied to see Kṛṣṇa's face, but instead condemned the creator of the body for making eyelids that obstructed their vision. The beauty of Kṛṣṇa's face was therefore much more appreciated by the gopīs than by His friends the cowherd boys or even by Yaśodā Mātā, who was also interested in decorating the face of Kṛṣṇa.
SB Canto 10.1 to 10.13
According to this verse, devotees like Nārada and other residents of Śvetadvīpa are seen always engaged in chanting the holy name of the Lord because by such chanting they are always externally and internally blissful. The mumukṣus, persons desiring to be liberated, do not depend on the pleasures of the senses; instead, they concentrate fully on becoming liberated by chanting the holy name of the Lord. Karmīs like to create something pleasing to their ears and hearts, and although they sometimes like to chant or hear the glories of the Lord, they do not do it openly. Devotees, however, always spontaneously hear, chant about and remember the activities of the Lord, and by this process they are fully satisfied, even though these may seem like topics of sense gratification. Simply by hearing the transcendental narrations of the Lord's activities, Parīkṣit Mahārāja was liberated. He was therefore śrotramano-'bhirāma; that is, he glorified the process of hearing. This process should be accepted by all living entities.
The real business of a chief executive is to see to the happiness of the mass of people by training them in Kṛṣṇa consciousness in different divisions of life. Cātur-varṇyaṁ mayā sṛṣṭaṁ guṇa-karma-vibhāgaśaḥ (BG 4.13). A leader should train the people as brāhmaṇas, kṣatriyas, vaiśyas and śūdras and engage them in various occupational duties, thus helping them progress toward Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Instead, however, rogues and thieves in the guise of protectors arrange for a voting system, and in the name of democracy they come to power by hook or crook and exploit the citizens. Even long, long ago, asuras, persons devoid of God consciousness, became the heads of state, and now this is happening again. The various states of the world are preoccupied with arranging for military strength. Sometimes they spend sixty-five percent of the government's revenue for this purpose. But why should people's hard-earned money be spent in this way? Because of the present world situation, Kṛṣṇa has descended in the form of the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. This is quite natural, for without the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement the world cannot be peaceful and happy.
Because the mind is ultimately controlled by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Kṛṣṇa, the word apasmṛtiḥ is significant. Forgetfulness of one's own identity is called apasmṛtiḥ. This apasmṛtiḥ can be controlled by the Supreme Lord, for the Lord says, mattaḥ smṛtir jñānam apohanaṁ ca: (BG 15.15) "From Me come remembrance, knowledge and forgetfulness." Instead of allowing one to forget one's real position, Kṛṣṇa can revive one's original identity at the time of one's death, even though the mind may be flickering. Although the mind may work imperfectly at the time of death, Kṛṣṇa gives a devotee shelter at His lotus feet. Therefore when a devotee gives up his body, the mind does not take him to another material body (tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti mām eti (BG 4.9)); rather, Kṛṣṇa takes the devotee to that place where He is engaged in His pastimes (mām eti), as we have already discussed in previous verses. One's consciousness, therefore, must always be absorbed in Kṛṣṇa, and then one's life will be successful. Otherwise the mind will carry the soul to another material body. The soul will be placed in the semen of a father and discharged into the womb of a mother. The semen and ovum create a particular type of body according to the form of the father and mother, and when the body is mature, the soul emerges in that body and begins a new life. This is the process of transmigration of the soul from one body to another (tathā dehāntara-prāptiḥ (BG 2.13)). Unfortunately, those who are less intelligent think that when the body disappears, everything is finished. The entire world is being misled by such fools and rascals. But as stated in Bhagavad-gītā (2.20), na hanyate hanyamāne śarīre. The soul does not die when the body is destroyed. Rather, the soul takes on another body.
As long as the living entity is entangled in the fruitive activities of so-called happiness and distress, he will receive a particular type of body in which to endure the three kinds of suffering due to material nature (tri-tāpa-yantraṇā). An intelligent person, therefore, must free himself from the influence of the three modes of material nature and revive his original, spiritual body by engaging in the service of the Supreme Person, Kṛṣṇa. As long as one is materially attached, one must accept the process of birth, death, old age and disease. One is therefore advised that an intelligent person, instead of being entangled in so-called good and bad fruitive activities, should engage his life in advancing in Kṛṣṇa consciousness so that instead of accepting another material body (tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti (BG 4.9)), he will return home, back to Godhead.
Instead of being inimical toward other living entities, one should act piously by engaging in the service of the Supreme Lord, thus avoiding a fearful situation both in this life and in the next. In this regard, the following moral instruction by the great politician Cāṇakya Paṇḍita is very meaningful:
- tyaja durjana-saṁsargaṁ
- bhaja sādhu-samāgamam
- kuru puṇyam aho rātraṁ
- smara nityam anityatām
One should give up the company of devils, demons and nondevotees and should always associate with devotees and saintly persons. One should always act piously, thinking that this life is temporary, and not be attached to temporary happiness and distress. The Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is teaching all of human society this principle of becoming Kṛṣṇa conscious and thus solving the problems of life forever (tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti mām eti so 'rjuna (BG 4.9)).
"Whenever and wherever there is a decline in religious practice, O descendant of Bharata, and a predominant rise of irreligion—at that time I descend Myself." In this age, at the present moment, there are inordinate discrepancies in the discharge of human duties. Human life is meant for God realization, but unfortunately the materialistic civilization is stressing only the senses of the body, not understanding the living force within the body. As clearly stated in Bhagavad-gītā (dehino 'smin yathā dehe (BG 2.13)), within the body is the body's proprietor, the living force, which is more important. But human society has become so fallen that instead of understanding the living force within the body, people have become busy with external things. This is a discrepancy in human duties. Therefore Kṛṣṇa has taken birth or taken shelter within the womb of the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. Men of Kaṁsa's class, therefore, are very much afraid and are busy trying to stop this movement, especially in the Western countries.
The true mission in life is to cross the ocean of nescience, of repeated birth and death. Those in the darkness of ignorance, however, do not know this mission. Instead, being carried away by the waves of material nature (prakṛteḥ kriyamāṇāni guṇaiḥ karmāṇi sarvaśaḥ (BG 3.27)), they are undergoing the tribulations of mṛtyu-saṁsāra-vartmani (BG 9.3), repeated birth and death. But persons who have achieved knowledge by the association of devotees follow the mahājanas (mahat-kṛtena). Such a person always concentrates his mind upon the lotus feet of the Lord and executes one or more of the nine varieties of devotional service (śravaṇaṁ kīrtanaṁ viṣṇoḥ smaraṇaṁ pāda-sevanam (SB 7.5.23)). Simply by this process, one can cross the insurmountable ocean of nescience.
In human society there have been many instances in which great, exalted politicians have fallen from government and become lost in historical oblivion. The cause of this is aviśuddha-buddhayaḥ: (SB 10.2.32) their intelligence is impure. The śāstra says, na te viduḥ svārtha-gatiṁ hi viṣṇum (SB 7.5.31). One achieves the perfection of life by becoming a devotee of Viṣṇu, but people do not know this. Therefore, as stated in Bhagavad-gītā (12.5), kleśo 'dhikataras teṣām avyaktāsakta-cetasām. Persons who do not ultimately accept the Supreme Personality of Godhead and take to devotional service, but who instead are attached to impersonalism and voidism, must undergo great labor to achieve their goals.
- śreyaḥ-sṛtiṁ bhaktim udasya te vibho
- kliśyanti ye kevala-bodha-labdhaye
- (SB 10.14.4)
To achieve understanding, such persons work very hard and undergo severe austerities, but their hard labor and austerities themselves are their only achievement, for they do not actually achieve the real goal of life.
The Lord reminded Vasudeva and Devakī of two other incarnations in which He had appeared as their son. He had appeared as Pṛśnigarbha and Vāmanadeva, and now this was the third time He was appearing as the son of Devakī to fulfill their desire. The Lord then decided to leave the residence of Vasudeva and Devakī, in the prison house of Kaṁsa, and at this very time, Yogamāyā took birth as the daughter of Yaśodā. By the arrangement of Yogamāyā, Vasudeva was able to leave the prison house and save the child from the hands of Kaṁsa. When Vasudeva brought Kṛṣṇa to the house of Nanda Mahārāja, he saw that by Yogamāyā's arrangement, Yaśodā, as well as everyone else, was deeply asleep. Thus he exchanged the babies, taking Yogamāyā from Yaśodā's lap and placing Kṛṣṇa there instead. Then Vasudeva returned to his own place, having taken Yogamāyā as his daughter. He placed Yogamāyā on Devakī's bed and prepared to be a prisoner as before. In Gokula, Yaśodā could not understand whether she had given birth to a male or a female child.
Instead of deva-rūpiṇyām, some texts of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam clearly say viṣṇu-rūpiṇyām. In either case, the meaning is that Devakī has the same spiritual form as the Lord. The Lord is sac-cid-ānanda-vigraha (Bs. 5.1), and Devakī is also sac-cid-ānanda-vigraha. Therefore no one can find any fault in the way the Supreme Personality of Godhead, sac-cid-ānanda-vigraha, appeared from the womb of Devakī.
Devakī addressed the Supreme Personality of Godhead as Madhusūdana. She was aware that the Lord had killed many demons like Madhu who were hundreds and thousands of times more powerful than Kaṁsa, yet because of affection for the transcendental child, she believed that Kaṁsa could kill Him. Instead of thinking of the unlimited power of the Lord, she thought of the Lord with affection, and therefore she requested the transcendental child to disappear.
According to Vedic civilization, procreation should not be contrary to religious principles, and then the birthrate will be controlled. As stated in Bhagavad-gītā (7.11), dharmāviruddho bhūteṣu kāmo'smi: sex not contrary to religious principles is a representation of the Supreme Lord. People should be educated in how to give birth to good children through saṁskāras, beginning with the garbhādhāna-saṁskāra; birth should not be controlled by artificial means, for this will lead to a civilization of animals. If one follows religious principles, he automatically practices birth control because if one is spiritually educated he knows that the after-effects of sex are various types of misery (bahu-duḥkha-bhāja). One who is spiritually advanced does not indulge in uncontrolled sex. Therefore, instead of being forced to refrain from sex or refrain from giving birth to many children, people should be spiritually educated, and then birth control will automatically follow.
If one is determined to make spiritual advancement, he will not beget a child unless able to make that child a devotee. As stated in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (5.5.18), pitā na sa syāt: one should not become a father unless one is able to protect his child from mṛtyu, the path of birth and death. But where is there education about this? A responsible father never begets children like cats and dogs. Instead of being encouraged to adopt artificial means of birth control, people should be educated in Kṛṣṇa consciousness because only then will they understand their responsibility to their children. If one can beget children who will be devotees and be taught to turn aside from the path of birth and death (mṛtyu-saṁsāra-vartmani (BG 9.3)), there is no need of birth control. Rather, one should be encouraged to beget children. Artificial means of birth control have no value. Whether one begets children or does not, a population of men who are like cats and dogs will never make human society happy. It is therefore necessary for people to be educated spiritually so that instead of begetting children like cats and dogs, they will undergo austerities to produce devotees. This will make their lives successful.
Therefore, one need not undergo severe penances for many thousands of years; one need only learn how to love Kṛṣṇa and be always engaged in His service (sevonmukhe hi jihvādau svayam eva sphuraty adaḥ (Brs. 1.2.234)). Then one can very easily go back home, back to Godhead. Instead of bringing the Lord here for some material purpose, to have a son or whatever else, if we go back home, back to Godhead, our real relationship with the Lord is revealed, and we eternally engage in our eternal relationship. By chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra, we gradually develop our eternal relationship with the Supreme Person and thus attain the perfection called svarūpa-siddhi. We should take advantage of this benediction and go back home, back to Godhead. Śrīla Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura has therefore sung, patita-pāvana-hetu tava avatāra: Caitanya Mahāprabhu appeared as an incarnation to deliver all fallen souls like us and directly bestow upon us love of Godhead. We must take advantage of this great benediction of the great Personality of Godhead.
f one wants to go back home, back to Godhead, one must be niṣkiñcana, free from all material desires. Therefore, instead of desiring to have the Lord come here and become one's son, one should desire to become free from all material desires (anyābhilāṣitā-śūnyam (Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu 1.1.11)) and go back home, back to Godhead. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu teaches us in His Śikṣāṣṭaka:
- na dhanaṁ na janaṁ na sundarīṁ
- kavitāṁ vā jagad-īśa kāmaye
- mama janmani janmanīśvare
- bhavatād bhaktir ahaitukī tvayi
(Cc. Antya 20.29, Śikṣāṣṭaka 4)
"O almighty Lord, I have no desire to accumulate wealth, nor do I desire beautiful women, nor do I want any number of followers. I only want Your causeless devotional service, birth after birth." One should not ask the Lord to fulfill any materially tainted desires.
Śrīla Locana dāsa Ṭhākura has sung, āpana karama, bhuñjāye śamana, kahaye locana dāsa. Instead of taking good instructions from the sages and the śāstras, godless nondevotees act whimsically, according to their own plans. Actually, however, no one has his own plans because everyone is bound by the laws of nature and must act according to his tendency in material, conditional life. Therefore one must change one's own decision and follow the decision of Kṛṣṇa and Kṛṣṇa's devotees. Then one is rescued from punishment by Yamarāja. Kaṁsa was not uneducated. It appears from his talks with Vasudeva and Devakī that he knew all about the laws of nature. But because of his association with bad ministers, he could not make a clear decision about his welfare.
Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura has discussed the significance of the words nandas tu. The word tu, he says, is not used to fulfill the sentence, because without tu the sentence is complete. Therefore the word tu is used for a different purpose. Although Kṛṣṇa appeared as the son of Devakī, Devakī and Vasudeva did not enjoy the jāta-karma, the festival of the birth ceremony. Instead, this ceremony was enjoyed by Nanda Mahārāja, as stated here (nandas tv ātmaja utpanne jātāhlādo mahā-manāḥ). When Nanda Mahārāja met Vasudeva, Vasudeva could not disclose, "Your son Kṛṣṇa is actually my son. You are His father in a different way, spiritually." Because of fear of Kaṁsa, Vasudeva could not observe the festival for Kṛṣṇa's birth, Nanda Mahārāja, however, took full advantage of this opportunity.
The uncivilized man or materialistic person, however, does not know this aim of life. Na te viduḥ svārtha-gatiṁ hi viṣṇum (SB 7.5.31). One's real self-interest lies in satisfying Lord Viṣṇu. Not satisfying Lord Viṣṇu but instead attempting to become happy through material adjustments (bahir-artha-māninaḥ) is the wrong way for happiness. Because Viṣṇu is the root of everything, if Viṣṇu is pleased, everyone is pleased; in particular, one's children and family members become happy in all respects. Nanda Mahārāja wanted to see his newborn child happy. That was his purpose. Therefore he wanted to satisfy Lord Viṣṇu, and to satisfy Lord Viṣṇu it was necessary to satisfy His devotees, such as the learned brāhmaṇas, māgadhas and sūtas. Thus, in a roundabout way, ultimately it was Lord Viṣṇu who was to be satisfied.
Devotees automatically have all mystic power, but they do not like to compete with Kṛṣṇa. Instead, they fully surrender to Kṛṣṇa, and their yogic power is demonstrated by Kṛṣṇa's mercy. Devotees can show mystic yoga so powerful that a demon could not even dream of it, but they never try to demonstrate it for their personal sense gratification. Whatever they do is for the service of the Lord, and therefore they are always in a position superior to that of the demons. There are many karmīs, yogīs and jñānīs who artificially try to compete with Kṛṣṇa, and thus ordinary, foolish people who do not care to hear Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam from authorities consider some rascal yogī to be Bhagavān, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. At the present moment there are many so-called bābās who present themselves as incarnations of God by showing some insignificant mystic wonder, and foolish people regard them as God because of lacking knowledge of Kṛṣṇa.
Instead of crawling with Their knees, the babies could now stand up by holding on to something and walk little by little, without difficulty, by the strength of Their legs.
When Kṛṣṇa is caught in His naughty activities, the master of the house will say to Him, 'Oh, You are a thief,' and artificially express anger at Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa will then reply, 'I am not a thief. You are a thief.' Sometimes, being angry, Kṛṣṇa passes urine and stool in a neat, clean place in our houses. But now, our dear friend Yaśodā, this expert thief is sitting before you like a very good boy." Sometimes all the gopīs would look at Kṛṣṇa sitting there, His eyes fearful so that His mother would not chastise Him, and when they saw Kṛṣṇa's beautiful face, instead of chastising Him they would simply look upon His face and enjoy transcendental bliss. Mother Yaśodā would mildly smile at all this fun, and she would not want to chastise her blessed transcendental child.
This is Kṛṣṇa's business. He is also violent, as the killer of many demons. Although mundane people like nonviolence and other such brilliant qualities, God, the Absolute Truth, being always the same, is good in any activities, even so-called immoral activities like stealing, killing and violence. Kṛṣṇa is always pure, and He is always the Supreme Absolute Truth. Kṛṣṇa may do anything supposedly abominable in material life, yet still He is attractive. Therefore His name is Kṛṣṇa, meaning "all-attractive." This is the platform on which transcendental loving affairs and service are exchanged. Because of the features of Kṛṣṇa's face, the mothers were so attracted that they could not chastise Him. Instead of chastising Him, they smiled and enjoyed hearing of Kṛṣṇa's activities. Thus the gopīs remained satisfied, and Kṛṣṇa enjoyed their happiness. Therefore another name of Kṛṣṇa is Gopī-jana-vallabha because He invented such activities to please the gopīs.
Upon seeing Nārada, the naked young girls of the demigods were very much ashamed. Afraid of being cursed, they covered their bodies with their garments. But the two sons of Kuvera did not do so; instead, not caring about Nārada, they remained naked.
If one offers Me with love and devotion a leaf, a flower, fruit or water, I will accept it." A devotee, therefore, does not eat anything that would require slaughterhouses for poor animals. Rather, devotees take prasāda of Kṛṣṇa (tena tyaktena bhuñjīthāḥ). Kṛṣṇa recommends that one give Him patraṁ puṣpaṁ phalaṁ toyam—a leaf, a flower, fruit or water (BG 9.26). Animal food is never recommended for human beings; instead, a human being is recommended to take prasāda, remnants of food left by Kṛṣṇa. Yajña-śiṣṭāśinaḥ santo mucyante sarva-kilbiṣaiḥ (BG 3.13). If one practices eating prasāda, even if there is some little sinful activity involved, one becomes free from the results of sinful acts.
Tasmād guruṁ prapadyeta: one must approach a guru. Who is a guru? Śābde pare ca niṣṇātam (SB 11.3.21): a guru is one who has full transcendental knowledge. Unless one approaches a spiritual master, one remains in ignorance. Ācāryavān puruṣo veda (Chāndogya Upaniṣad 6.14.2): one has full knowledge about life when one is ācāryavān, controlled by the ācārya. But when one is conducted by rajo-guṇa and tamo-guṇa, one does not care about anything; instead, one acts like an ordinary foolish animal, risking his life (mṛtyu-saṁsāra-vartmani (BG 9.3)) and therefore continuing to go through suffering after suffering. Na te viduḥ svārtha-gatiṁ hi viṣṇum (SB 7.5.31). Such a foolish person does not know how to elevate himself in this body. Instead, he indulges in sinful activities and goes deeper and deeper into hellish life.
While alive, does this body belong to its employer, to the self, to the father, the mother, or the mother's father? Does it belong to the person who takes it away by force, to the slave master who purchases it, or to the sons who burn it in the fire? Or, if the body is not burned, does it belong to the dogs that eat it? Among the many possible claimants, who is the rightful claimant? Not to ascertain this but instead to maintain the body by sinful activities is not good.
"The symptoms of a sādhu are that he is tolerant, merciful and friendly to all living entities. He has no enemies, he is peaceful, he abides by the scriptures, and all his characteristics are sublime." (SB 3.25.21) A sādhu is suhṛdaḥ sarva-dehinām, the friend of everyone. Why then should the rich, instead of associating with sādhus, waste their valuable time in association with other rich men who are averse to spiritual life? Both the poor man and the rich man can take advantage of the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, and here it is advised that everyone do so. There is no profit in avoiding the association of the members of the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement.
Nalakūvara and Maṇigrīva actually had nothing to do with devotional service or seeing the Supreme Personality of Godhead face to face, for this is not an ordinary opportunity. It is not that because one is very rich or learned or was born in an aristocratic family one will be able to see the Supreme Personality of Godhead face to face. This is impossible. But in this case, because Nārada Muni desired that Nalakūvara and Maṇigrīva see Vāsudeva face to face, the Supreme Personality of Godhead wanted to fulfill the words of His very dear devotee Nārada Muni. If one seeks the favor of a devotee instead of directly asking favors from the Supreme Personality of Godhead, one is very easily successful. Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura has therefore recommended: vaiṣṇava ṭhākura tomāra kukkura bhuliyā jānaha more, kṛṣṇa se tomāra kṛṣṇa dite pāra. One should desire to become like a dog in strictly following a devotee. Kṛṣṇa is in the hand of a devotee. Adurlabham ātma-bhaktau. Thus without the favor of a devotee, one cannot directly approach Kṛṣṇa, what to speak of engaging in His service. Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura therefore sings, chāḍiyā vaiṣṇava-sevā nistāra pāyeche kebā: unless one becomes a servant of a pure devotee, one cannot be delivered from the material condition of life. In our Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇava society, following in the footsteps of Rūpa Gosvāmī, our first business is to seek shelter of a bona fide spiritual master (ādau gurv-āśrayaḥ).
Instead of trying to understand Kṛṣṇa in detail, it is better to offer our respectful obeisances unto Him, for He is the origin of everything and He is everything. Because we are covered by the material modes of nature, He is very difficult for us to understand unless He reveals Himself to us. Therefore it is better for us to acknowledge that He is everything and offer obeisances unto His lotus feet.
Unless delivered or blessed by a devotee, one cannot realize that Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Manuṣyāṇāṁ sahasreṣu kaścid yatati siddhaye. According to this verse of Bhagavad-gītā (7.3), there are so many siddhas or yogīs who cannot understand Kṛṣṇa; instead, they misunderstand Him. But if one takes shelter of a devotee descending from the paramparā system of Nārada (svayambhūr nāradaḥ śambhuḥ (SB 6.3.20)), one can then understand who is an incarnation of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. In this age, many pseudo incarnations are advertised simply for having exhibited some magical performances, but except for persons who are servants of Nārada and other servants of Kṛṣṇa, no one can understand who is God and who is not. This is confirmed by Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura. Chāḍiyā vaiṣṇava-sevā nistāra pāyeche kebā: no one is delivered from the material conception of life unless favored by a Vaiṣṇava. Others can never understand, neither by speculation nor by any other bodily or mental gymnastics.
It is a custom of Vedic culture that whenever there is any auspicious ceremony, one should give valuable cows in charity to the brāhmaṇas. Therefore mother Yaśodā requested Kṛṣṇa, "Instead of being enthusiastic in playing, now please come and be enthusiastic in charity." Yajña-dāna-tapaḥ-karma na tyājyaṁ kāryam eva tat. As advised in Bhagavad-gītā (18.5), sacrifice, charity and austerity should never be given up. Yajño dānaṁ tapaś caiva pāvanāni manīṣiṇām: even if one is very much advanced in spiritual life, one should not give up these three duties. To observe one's birthday ceremony, one should do something in terms of one of these three items (yajña, dāna or tapaḥ), or all of them together.
The cowherd men, headed by Nanda Mahārāja, began to contemplate: It is very astonishing that although this boy Kṛṣṇa has many times faced many varied causes of death, by the grace of the Supreme Personality of Godhead it was these causes of fear that were killed, instead of Him.
The cowherd men innocently thought, "Because our Kṛṣṇa is innocent, the causes of death that appeared before Him were themselves killed instead of Kṛṣṇa. This is the greatest grace of the Supreme Personality of Godhead."
Brahmā wanted to take away Kṛṣṇa's associates, but instead he took away some other boys and calves. Rāvaṇa wanted to take away Sītā, but that was impossible, and instead he took away a māyā Sītā. Similarly, Brahmā took away māyārbhakāḥ: boys manifested by Kṛṣṇa's māyā. Brahmā could show some extraordinary opulence to the māyārbhakāḥ; but he could not show any extraordinary potency to Kṛṣṇa's associates. That he would see in the very near future. Māyārbhakasya īśituḥ. This bewilderment, this māyā, was caused by the supreme controller, prabhavataḥ—the all-potent Supreme person, Kṛṣṇa—and we shall see the result. Anyone materially born is subject to bewilderment. This pastime is therefore called brahma-vimohana-līlā, the pastime of bewildering Brahmā. Mohitaṁ nābhijānāti mām ebhyaḥ param avyayam (BG 7.13). Materially born persons cannot fully understand Kṛṣṇa. Even the demigods cannot understand Him (muhyanti yat sūrayaḥ). Tene brahmā hṛdā ya ādi-kavaye (SB 1.1.1). Everyone, from Brahmā down to the small insect, must take lessons from Kṛṣṇa.
Everything was Kṛṣṇa. The calves, the cowherd boys and their maintainer Himself were all Kṛṣṇa. In other words, Kṛṣṇa expanded Himself in varieties of calves and cowherd boys and continued His pastimes uninterrupted for one year. As stated in Bhagavad-gītā, Kṛṣṇa's expansion is situated in everyone's heart as the Supersoul. Similarly, instead of expanding Himself as the Supersoul, He expanded Himself as a portion of calves and cowherd boys for one continuous year.
Brahmā wanted to bewilder Kṛṣṇa, who bewilders the entire universe. The whole universe is under Kṛṣṇa's mystic power (mama māyā duratyayā (BG 7.14)), but Brahmā wanted to mystify Him. The result was that Brahmā himself was mystified, just as one who wants to kill another may himself be killed. In other words, Brahmā was defeated by his own attempt. In a similar position are the scientists and philosophers who want to overcome the mystic power of Kṛṣṇa. They challenge Kṛṣṇa, saying, "What is God? We can do this, and we can do that." But the more they challenge Kṛṣṇa in this way, the more they are implicated in suffering. The lesson here is that we should not try to overcome Kṛṣṇa. Rather, instead of endeavoring to surpass Him, we should surrender to Him (sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja (BG 18.66)).
Instead of defeating Kṛṣṇa, Brahmā himself was defeated, for he could not understand what Kṛṣṇa was doing. Since Brahmā, the chief person within this universe, was so bewildered, what is to be said of so-called scientists and philosophers? Sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja. We should give up all our tiny efforts to defy the arrangement of Kṛṣṇa. Instead, whatever arrangements He proposes, we should accept. This is always better, for this will make us happy. The more we try to defeat the arrangement of Kṛṣṇa, the more we become implicated in Kṛṣṇa's māyā (daivī hy eṣā guṇa-mayī mama māyā duratyayā). But one who has reached the point of surrendering to the instructions of Kṛṣṇa (mām eva ye prapadyante) is liberated, free from kṛṣṇa-māyā (māyām etāṁ taranti te (BG 7.14)). The power of Kṛṣṇa is just like a government that cannot be overcome. First of all there are laws, and then there is police power, and beyond that is military power.
As the darkness of snow on a dark night and the light of a glowworm in the light of day have no value, the mystic power of an inferior person who tries to use it against a person of great power is unable to accomplish anything; instead, the power of that inferior person is diminished.
SB Cantos 10.14 to 12 (Translations Only)
If a person comes to the stage of considering the body "mine" instead of "me," he will certainly not consider the body as dear as his own self. After all, even as the body is growing old and useless, one's desire to continue living remains strong.
Therefore may a sacrifice for the pleasure of the cows, the brāhmaṇas and Govardhana Hill begin! With all the paraphernalia collected for worshiping Indra, let this sacrifice be performed instead.
Their taking shelter of Kṛṣṇa is just like the foolish attempt of men who abandon transcendental knowledge of the self and instead try to cross over the great ocean of material existence in the false boats of fruitive, ritual sacrifices.
Some of the gopīs, however, could not manage to get out of their houses, and instead they remained home with eyes closed, meditating upon Him in pure love.
As Kṛṣṇa dodged about, He playfully fell on the ground and quickly got up again. The raging elephant, thinking Kṛṣṇa was down, tried to gore Him with his tusks but struck the earth instead.
Śrī Mucukunda said: O Lord, the people of this world, both men and women, are bewildered by Your illusory energy. Unaware of their real benefit, they do not worship You but instead seek happiness by entangling themselves in family affairs, which are actually sources of misery.
Because Rukmī envied the Lord, O King, he forbade his family members to give his sister to Kṛṣṇa, although they wanted to. Instead, Rukmī decided to give Rukmiṇī to Śiśupāla.
"Satrājit promised his jewellike daughter to us but then gave her to Kṛṣṇa instead, contemptuously neglecting us. So why should Satrājit not follow his brother's path?"
Since your brother and father offered you to them, why did you reject the King of Cedi and all those other suitors, who stood before you, maddened by Cupid? Why, instead, did you choose Us, who are not at all your equal?
The aroma of Your lotus feet, which is glorified by great saints, awards people liberation and is the abode of Goddess Lakṣmī. What woman would take shelter of any other man after savoring that aroma? Since You are the abode of transcendental qualities, what mortal woman with the insight to distinguish her own true interest would disregard that fragrance and depend instead on someone who is always subject to terrible fear?
That mortal who rejects You—his true Self, dearmost friend, and Lord—for the sake of sense objects, whose nature is just the opposite, refuses nectar and instead consumes poison.
These Yādavas have abandoned the holy lands inhabited by saintly sages and have instead taken shelter of a fortress in the sea, a place where no brahminical principles are observed. There, just like thieves, they harass their subjects.
When this human body is used for Your devotional service, it acts as one's self, friend and beloved. But unfortunately, although You always show mercy to the conditioned souls and affectionately help them in every way, and although You are their true Self, people in general fail to delight in You. Instead they commit spiritual suicide by worshiping illusion. Alas, because they persistently hope for success in their devotion to the unreal, they continue to wander about this greatly fearful world, assuming various degraded bodies.
When he becomes frustrated in his attempts to make money and instead befriends My devotees, I bestow My special mercy upon him.
Because I am difficult to worship, people generally avoid Me and instead worship other deities, who are quickly satisfied. When people receive kingly opulences from these deities, they become arrogant, intoxicated with pride and neglectful of their duties. They dare to offend even the demigods who have bestowed benedictions upon them.
The primeval Lord, understanding the offense committed by Indra, did not become proud. Instead He spoke laughingly as follows to Cupid and his followers, who were trembling before Him: "Do not fear, O mighty Madana, O wind-god and wives of the demigods. Rather, please accept these gifts I am offering you and kindly sanctify My āśrama by your presence."
The materialistic followers of Vedic rituals, giving up the worship of the Lord, instead practically worship their wives, and thus their homes become dedicated to sex life. Such materialistic householders encourage one another in such whimsical behavior. Understanding ritualistic sacrifice as a necessary item for bodily maintenance, they perform unauthorized ceremonies in which there is no distribution of foodstuffs or charity to the brāhmaṇas and other respectable persons. Instead, they cruelly slaughter animals such as goats without any understanding of the dark consequences of their activities.
I am such a fool that I have given up the service of that person who, being eternally situated within my heart, is actually most dear to me. That most dear one is the Lord of the universe, who is the bestower of real love and happiness and the source of all prosperity. Although He is in my own heart, I have completely neglected Him. Instead I have ignorantly served insignificant men who can never satisfy my real desires and who have simply brought me unhappiness, fear, anxiety, lamentation and illusion.
Certainly in this city of Videha I alone am completely foolish. I neglected the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who awards us everything, even our original spiritual form, and instead I desired to enjoy sense gratification with many men.
One who has fixed Me within his mind as the goal of life should give up activities based on sense gratification and should instead execute work governed by the regulative principles for advancement. When, however, one is fully engaged in searching out the ultimate truth of the soul, one should not accept the scriptural injunctions governing fruitive activities.
The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: Those who give up these methods for achieving Me, which consist of devotional service, analytic philosophy and regulated execution of prescribed duties, and instead, being moved by the material senses, cultivate insignificant sense gratification, certainly undergo the continual cycle of material existence.
Persons with perverted intelligence do not understand this actual purpose of Vedic knowledge and instead propagate as the highest Vedic truth the flowery statements of the Vedas that promise material rewards. Those in actual knowledge of the Vedas never speak in that way.
Just as a foolish businessman gives up his real wealth in useless business speculation, foolish persons give up all that is actually valuable in life and instead pursue promotion to material heaven, which although pleasing to hear about is actually unreal, like a dream. Such bewildered persons imagine within their hearts that they will achieve all material blessings.
An intelligent person should therefore reject all bad association and instead take up the association of saintly devotees, whose words cut off the excessive attachment of one's mind.
In Kali-yuga men will be wretched and controlled by women. They will reject their fathers, brothers, other relatives and friends and will instead associate with the sisters and brothers of their wives. Thus their conception of friendship will be based exclusively on sexual ties.
Words that do not describe the transcendental Personality of Godhead but instead deal with temporary matters are simply false and useless. Only those words that manifest the transcendental qualities of the Supreme Lord are actually truthful, auspicious and pious.