Jijñāsitam. This is very important thing, jijñāsitam. This is the beginning of life actually. Athāto brahma jijñāsā. Inquisitiveness. Tasmād guruṁ prapadyeta (SB 11.3.21). One should search after a guru, jijñāsu, one who is inquisitive. That is actually life. Just like animals, they are not inquisitive. They are simply concerned with the four principles of bodily necessities: eating . . . Udaram, dākṣyaṁ kuṭumba-bharaṇam (SB 12.2.6).
In this age, Kali-yuga, if one can eat sumptuously, he thinks that, "All my interest is now fulfilled. I have eaten very nicely today." That's all. (chuckles) And dākṣyaṁ kuṭumba-bharaṇam: and if he can maintain a wife and three children, oh, he is Dakṣa Mahārāja. Dakṣa Mahārāja. This is the Age of Kali. You see? If one can simply eat and if he's well-to-do, he can maintain . . .
And when I was in New York, one old lady, she used to come to my class. Not in Second Avenue; when I first started in 72nd Street. So she had a son. So I asked, "Why don't you get your son married?" "Oh well, if he can maintain a wife, I have no objection." Just to maintain a wife is a great job in this age. Dākṣyaṁ kuṭumba-bharaṇam (SB 12.2.6). And still we are very much proud that we are advancing. Even a bird maintains a wife, even a beast maintains wife. And human being hesitates to maintain a wife? You see? And they are advanced in civilization? Hmm? It is a very horrible age.
Therefore Caitanya Mahāprabhu has said that don't waste your time in any way. Simply chant Hare Kṛṣṇa. Harer nāma harer nāma harer nāmaiva (CC Adi 17.21). So people are not at all interested in spiritual life. No inquiry. No inquiry. But that is the life, that is human life. Jijñāsitam. Tasmād guruṁ prapadyeta (SB 11.3.21). One must find out a person, guru, a spiritual master, and inquire from him the problems of life. Just like Sanātana Gosvāmī. You'll find in the teachings of Lord Caitanya, he inquired. He was a great minister, and he thought himself that, "I am a most third-class man because I do not know what is the aim of my life."
Ke āmi kene āmāya jāre tāpa-traya: "Why I am put into this miserable condition of material existence? I don't want all these miserable conditions. Still, they are enforced upon me."
So there should be inquiry. But the animal has no inquiry. Just like the goat is standing whole night. Just see. It has no power to inquire, "Oh, why you have put me into this condition?" That is animal life. "All right, suffering is there. All right, disease is there. That's all right. Death is there, all right. Old age is there, all right." This is animal life.
Therefore Nārada says, jijñāsitam adhītaṁ ca. "You are not a fool. You have inquired sufficiently, and you have studied." Adhītaṁ ca. So it is not that without studying, without inquiry, one becomes elevated. No. Jijñāsitam adhītaṁ ca brahma. What about, inquiry Brahman? Athāto brahma jijñāsā.
Ordinary jijñāsā, "What is the news today?" this is not jijñāsā. Jijñāsā means brahma-jijñāsā. Jijñāsitam adhītaṁ ca brahma yat tat sanātanam. Sanātanam means eternal. We should inquire about our eternal life, eternal blissful life. That is our prerogative.
So "You have done all these things." He had a spiritual master like Nārada, and he was himself Vyāsadeva. So everything was first class. But still, tathāpi, still, śocasi, "You are lamenting. You are morose. You are morose, you are unhappy just like you have akṛtārtha, you have done nothing."
So we have to become kṛtārtha. Kṛtārtha means one who has finished his job. The responsibility of human life is called kṛtārtha. Kṛta, kṛtārtha. The Sanskrit words are very appropriate. The people still have to learn so many things from this Vedic literature.
Then Vyāsadeva replies, asty eva me sarvam idaṁ tvayoktam (SB 1.5.5): "My dear sir, my dear spiritual master, whatever you are saying, it is all right. I have studied sufficiently. I have inquired sufficiently. I know about Brahman, everything. I have written Vedānta-sūtra; still . . ."
Asty eva. Asty eva me sarvam idaṁ tvayoktam. "Whatever you are saying, everything is there in me." Tathāpi nātmā parituṣyate me: "Still I don't find satisfaction." Tan-mūlam avyaktam. "And what is the cause? That is also I do not know."
- tan-mūlam avyaktam agādha-bodhaṁ
- pṛcchāmahe tvātma-bhavātma-bhūtam
- (SB 1.5.5)
Bhavātmā. Ātma-bhūtaṁ, bhava. "You are the son of Brahmā." Brahmā is called ātma-bhūta. Brahmā is not born of ordinary father and mother. Brahmā is born of the Supreme Lord, Supreme ātmā, Nārāyaṇa, Garbhodakaśāyī Viṣṇu. Therefore he is called Svayambhū. Brahmā's another name is Svayambhū.
- sa vai bhavān veda samasta-guhyam
- upāsito yat puruṣaḥ purāṇaḥ
- (SB 1.5.6)
Now here Nārada's qualification is that, "Because you are a great devotee of the original Personality of Godhead, puruṣaḥ purāṇaḥ." Śāśvataṁ puruṣam ādyam (BG 10.12). Just like Arjuna accepted Kṛṣṇa, śāśvataṁ puruṣam ādyam. Just like we are singing now, govindam ādi-puruṣam. So purāṇa-puruṣam. Purāṇa-puruṣam, the oldest puruṣa, oldest being. The oldest being is Kṛṣṇa. Advaitam acyutam anādim ananta-rūpam ādyaṁ purāṇa-puruṣam (Bs. 5.33).
These references are all the same, either you take Vedānta-sūtra or you, say, take Brahma-sūtra or you take Brahma-saṁhitā or Bhāgavatam. There is no contradiction, because the same truth is explained in different Vedic literature.