Tyaktvā sva-dharmaṁ caraṇāmbujaṁ hareḥ. This dharma means according to social and spiritual position, somebody is brahmacārī, somebody is householder, somebody is vānaprastha, somebody is sannyāsī; somebody is brāhmaṇa, somebody kṣatriya, somebody's vaiśya, somebody's śūdra. This is Vedic division of social and spiritual life. So each position has got different types of occupational duties. These are mentioned in the Bhāgavata. Brāhmaṇa has got to do: śamaḥ damaḥ śaucaṁ titikṣā. Kṣatriya: śauryaṁ vīryaṁ yuddhe cāpalāyanam. In this way, there are some prescribed duties. But these are all material consideration. People cannot even follow systematically the material system so that you can live peacefully so long you are in this material world. The modern civilization is so condemned. They do not know even how to live peacefully. If these divisions are there, four divisions: brāhmaṇa, kṣatriya, vaiśya, śūdra and brahmacārī, gṛhastha, vānaprastha, it will be very systematic. People will be automatically enlightened.
That is real human civilization. If the society, human society, does not at all adopt this system of social life, there cannot be any peace. Still, in India, although it is fallen so much, in the interior village you'll find the social divisions are maintained and they live very peacefully. Very peacefully. Those who have gone into the interior village, they have seen. And everyone can elevate himself to Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Sva-karmaṇā tam abhyarcya (BG 18.46). It is not that because one is śūdra or one is gṛhastha, vānaprastha, he cannot. No. For Kṛṣṇa worship, for everyone the door is open. That is explained here. Even if you think that, "If I take to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, join this international movement, I will be deviating from my real duty," so that also you can do. What is your real duty? This is temporary duty. Suppose you are a very nice brāhmaṇa or nice kṣatriya, nice businessman, nice politician. Your career will be lost, if you think, by joining this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, your career will be lost—don't think like that. It is still profitable. Even if you give up whole career and simply join Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, then your life is success. That is being stressed. Svalpam apy asya dharmasya.
So Nārada Muni says, tyaktvā sva-dharmam. Sva-dharmam means one's prescribed occupational duties. So long we have got this body, we have to do something. Without doing something we cannot live. The material world will not allow you, that you cannot do anything and you'll be provided. No. Whatever you may be, you may be President Nixon or ordinary man in the street, everyone has to do something. That is not possible. There is a verse in the Viṣṇu Purāṇa, tṛtīya-śaktir iṣyate (Viṣṇu Purāṇa 6.7.61, vanisource:CC Madhya 6.154). Here the situation, material situation, is so stringent that without working, you cannot live. You'll die. There is an example in the Hitopadeśa: na hi suptasya siṁhasya praviśanti mukhe mṛgāḥ. Suptasya siṁhasya. Siṁha means lion. If the lion thinks that "I am so powerful animal, king of the forest. Why shall I work?" No. Therefore it is said that if he does not work, then he'll have to starve, even though he's a lion. Because he may be lion, but if he sleeps that, "I am king. Let me sleep and my food will come automatically in my mouth," that is not possible. This is the example. Very good example. Na hi suptasya siṁhasya praviśanti mukhe mṛgāḥ. A lion is sleeping. If he does not work, he'll also starve. He'll also starve. And what to speak of cats and dogs.
So this is not possible. Therefore, there is sva-dharma. Sva-dharma means, you are in brahminical quality, your work is this. You are in martial spirit . . . one who is intelligent, for him, studying Vedas, understanding the philosophy, preaching for the good of the society, train them, guide them, this is brāhmaṇa's business. Brāhmaṇa is not going to work in the factory. That is not brāhmaṇa's business. But in modern civilization, everyone should go to factory, never mind whether you are brāhmaṇa or śūdra or a . . . this is the mistake. Therefore, if I am not fit for a certain thing and if I am engaged in that business, that will be failure. That will be failure. For a particular type of business, occupation, one must have particular type of brain. So therefore this is division. Not that everyone is of the same type. You cannot find. There is not . . .
Because the world is being conducted by the three modes of nature, you cannot find all men of the same category. There must be intelligent class of men, there must be martial spirit, administrative class of men, there must be business-minded men. There must be śūdras; they do not know anything, they want to serve only, master. So therefore scientifically it is divided. Mukha bahu rupadebhyo. Just like in your body you find scientifically it is designed by God or Lord Brahmā: "This is brain department, this is arms department, this is belly department, this is leg department." All of them required. You cannot avoid any one of them. This is called sva-dharma. One must be fixed up to his own position. That is the real perfect social system.
Now here it is said, tyaktvā sva-dharmam. This is material division. The spiritual is different. So far . . . I am combination of matter and spirit; so far my body is concerned, there is division. But when I come to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, it is not like that. That is simply for everyone. Either he's externally a brāhmaṇa, kṣatriya, vaiśya, śūdra, American, Indian, black, white, it doesn't matter. That is bodily. When you come to the spiritual platform, that is one. Because spirit is one.