Chanting the Song Sung by Lord Siva
yaviyobhyo 'dadat kastha
maitreyah uvaca--Maitreya continued to speak; vijitasvah--of the name Vijitasva; adhiraja--the emperor; asit--became; prthu-putrah--the son of Maharaja Prthu; prthu-sravah--of great activities; yaviyobhyah--unto the younger brothers; adadat--offered; kasthah--different directions; bhratrbhyah--unto the brothers; bhratr-vatsalah--very affectionate to the brothers.
The great sage Maitreya continued: Vijitasva, the eldest son of Maharaja Prthu, who had a reputation like his father's, became emperor and gave his younger brothers different directions of the world to govern, for he was very affectionate toward his brothers.
After describing the life and character of Maharaja Prthu in the previous chapter, the great sage Maitreya began to speak about the sons and grandsons in the genealogical line of the Prthu dynasty. After the death of Maharaja Prthu, his eldest son, Vijitasva, became emperor of the world. King Vijitasva was very affectionate toward his younger brothers, and therefore he wanted them to rule different directions of the world. From time immemorial the eldest son generally becomes king after the death of the previous king. When the Pandavas ruled the earth, Maharaja Yudhisthira, the eldest son of King Pandu, became emperor, and his younger brothers assisted him. Similarly, King Vijitasva's younger brothers were appointed to govern the different directions of the world.
turyam dravinase vibhuh
haryaksaya--unto Haryaksa; adisat--delivered; pracim--eastern; dhumrakesaya--unto Dhumrakesa; daksinam--the southern side; praticim--the western side; vrka-samjnaya--unto his brother whose name was Vrka; turyam--the northern side; dravinase--unto another brother of his named Dravina; vibhuh--the master.
Maharaja Vijitasva offered the eastern part of the world to his brother Haryaksa, the southern part to Dhumrakesa, the western part to Vrka and the northern part to Dravina.
antardhana--of disappearance; gatim--achievement; sakrat--from King Indra; labdhva--getting; antardhana--of the name; samjnitah--so nominated; apatya--children; trayam--three; adhatta--begot; sikhandinyam--in Sikhandini, his wife; su-sammatam--approved by everyone.
Formerly, Maharaja Vijitasva pleased the King of heaven, Indra, and from him received the title Antardhana. His wife's name was Sikhandini, and by her he begot three good sons.
Maharaja Vijitasva was known as Antardhana, which means "disappearance." He received this title from Indra, and it refers to the time when Indra stole Maharaja Prthu's horse from the sacrificial arena. Indra was not visible to others when he was stealing the horse, but Maharaja Prthu's son Vijitasva could see him. Yet despite his knowing that Indra was taking away his father's horse, Vijitasva did not attack him. This indicates that Maharaja Vijitasva respected the right persons. Although Indra was stealing the horse from his father, Vijitasva knew perfectly well that Indra was not an ordinary thief. Since Indra was a great and powerful demigod and servant of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vijitasva purposefully excused him due to sentiment only, even though Indra was acting wrongly. Thus Indra became very pleased with Vijitasva at that time. The demigods have the great mystic power of being able to appear and disappear according to their will, and since Indra was very pleased with Vijitasva, he bestowed this mystic power upon him. Thus Vijitasva became known as Antardhana.
pavakah pavamanas ca
sucir ity agnayah pura
punar yoga-gatim gatah
pavakah--of the name Pavaka; pavamanah--of the name Pavamana; ca--also; sucih--of the name Suci; iti--thus; agnayah--the fire-gods; pura--formerly; vasistha--the great sage Vasistha; sapat--by being cursed; utpannah--now born as such; punah--again; yoga-gatim--the destination of mystic yoga practice; gatah--attained.
The three sons of Maharaja Antardhana were named Pavaka, Pavamana and Suci. Formerly these three personalities were the demigods of fire, but due to the curse of the great sage Vasistha, they became the sons of Maharaja Antardhana. As such, they were as powerful as the fire-gods, and they attained the destination of mystic yoga power, being again situated as the demigods of fire.
In the Bhagavad-gita (6.41-43) it is stated that one who falls down from yoga practice is elevated to the heavenly planets, and after enjoying the material facilities there he again comes down to the earthly planet and takes birth in a very rich family or a very pious brahmana family. Thus it is to be understood that when demigods fall down, they come to earth as sons of very rich and pious families. In such families, the living entity gets an opportunity to execute Krsna consciousness and thereby gain promotion to his desired goal. The sons of Maharaja Antardhana had been the demigods in charge of fire, and they regained their former position and by mystic power returned to the heavenly planets.
ya indram asva-hartaram
vidvan api na jaghnivan
antardhanah--the king of the name Antardhana; nabhasvatyam--unto his wife Nabhasvati; havirdhanam--of the name Havirdhana; avindata--obtained; yah--who; indram--King Indra; asva-hartaram--who was stealing the horse of his father; vidvan api--although he knew it; na jaghnivan--did not kill.
Maharaja Antardhana had another wife, named Nabhasvati, and by her he was happy to beget another son, named Havirdhana. Since Maharaja Antardhana was very liberal, he did not kill Indra while the demigod was stealing his father's horse at the sacrifice.
It is understood from various scriptures and puranas that the King of heaven, Indra, was very expert in stealing and kidnapping. He could steal anything without being visible to the proprietor, and he could kidnap anyone's wife without being detected. Once he raped the wife of Gautama Muni by using his disappearing art, and similarly by becoming invisible he stole the horse of Maharaja Prthu. Although in human society such activities are considered abominable, the demigod Indra was not considered to be degraded by them. Although Antardhana could understand that King Indra was stealing the horse from his father, he did not kill Indra, for he knew that if one who is very powerful sometimes commits an abominable act, it should be disregarded. In Bhagavad-gita (9.30) it is clearly stated:
api cet su-duracaro
bhajate mam ananya-bhak
sadhur eva sa mantavyah
samyag vyavasito hi sah
Thus the Lord says that even if a devotee commits an abominable act, he should be considered a sadhu, or a pious man, because of his unflinching devotion to the Lord. The devotees of the Lord never willingly commit any sinful act, but sometimes they commit something abominable due to their previous habits. Such acts should not be taken very seriously, however, because the devotees of the Lord are very powerful, whether they are on the heavenly planets or on this planet. If by chance they commit something abominable, it should not be taken into account, but should be overlooked.
rajnam vrttim karadana-
vyajena visasarja ha
rajnam--of the kings; vrttim--source of livelihood; kara--taxes; adana--realization; danda--punishment; sulka--fines; adi--etc.; darunam--which are very severe; manyamanah--thinking like that; dirgha--long; sattra--sacrifice; vyajena--on the plea; visasarja--gave up; ha--in the past.
Whenever Antardhana, the supreme royal power, had to exact taxes, punish his citizens or fine them severely, he was not willing to do so. Consequently he retired from the execution of such duties and engaged himself in the performance of different sacrifices.
It is clear herein that the king sometimes has to perform duties which are not very desirable just because he is the king. Similarly, Arjuna was not at all willing to fight because fighting or killing one's own kinsmen and family members is not at all desirable. Nonetheless the ksatriyas had to perform such undesirable actions as a matter of duty. Maharaja Antardhana was not very happy while exacting taxes or punishing the citizens for their criminal activities; therefore, on the plea of performing sacrifices, he retired from the royal majestic power at a very early age.
tatrapi hamsam purusam
yajams tal-lokatam apa
tatra api--despite his engagement; hamsam--one who kills the distress of his kinsmen; purusam--unto the Supreme Person; parama-atmanam--the most beloved Supersoul; atma-drk--one who has seen or acquired self-realization; yajan--by worshiping; tat-lokatam--achieved the same planet; apa--achieved; kusalena--very easily; samadhina--always keeping himself in ecstasy.
Although Maharaja Antardhana was engaged in performing sacrifices, because he was a self-realized soul he very intelligently rendered devotional service to the Lord, who eradicates all the fears of His devotees. By thus worshiping the Supreme Lord, Maharaja Antardhana, rapt in ecstasy, attained His planet very easily.
Since sacrifices are generally performed by fruitive actors, it is especially mentioned here (tatrapi) that although Maharaja Antardhana was externally engaged in performing sacrifices, his real business was rendering devotional service by hearing and chanting. In other words, he was performing the usual sacrifices by the method of sankirtana-yajna, as recommended herein:
sravanam kirtanam visnoh
arcanam vandanam dasyam
Devotional service is called kirtana-yajna, and by practicing the sankirtana-yajna, one is very easily elevated to the planet where the Supreme Lord resides. Out of the five kinds of liberations, achieving the same planet where the Lord resides and living with the Lord there is called salokya liberation.
vidurasuta sat sutan
barhisadam gayam suklam
krsnam satyam jitavratam
havirdhanat--from Havirdhana; havirdhani--the name of the wife of Havirdhana; vidura--O Vidura; asuta--gave birth; sat--six; sutan--sons; barhisadam--of the name Barhisat; gayam--of the name Gaya; suklam--of the name Sukla; krsnam--of the name Krsna; satyam--of the name Satya; jitavratam--of the name Jitavrata.
Havirdhana, the son of Maharaja Antardhana, had a wife named Havirdhani, who gave birth to six sons, named Barhisat, Gaya, Sukla, Krsna, Satya and Jitavrata.
yogesu ca kurudvaha
barhisat--of the name Barhisat; su-maha-bhagah--very fortunate; havirdhanih--of the name Havirdhani; praja-patih--the post of Prajapati; kriya-kandesu--in the matter of fruitive activities; nisnatah--being merged in; yogesu--in mystic yoga practices; ca--also; kuru-udvaha--O best of the Kurus (Vidura).
The great sage Maitreya continued: My dear Vidura, Havirdhana's very powerful son named Barhisat was very expert in performing various kinds of fruitive sacrifices, and he was also expert in the practice of mystic yoga. By his great qualifications, he became known as Prajapati.
In the beginning of the creation there were not many living entities, and consequently the very powerful living entities or demigods were appointed as Prajapatis in order to beget children and increase the population. There are many Prajapatis--Brahma, Daksa and Manu are sometimes known as Prajapatis--and Barhisat, the son of Havirdhana, became one of them.
pracinagraih kusair asid
yasya--whose; idam--this; deva-yajanam--satisfying the demigods by sacrifices; anuyajnam--continually sacrificing; vitanvatah--executing; pracina-agraih--keeping the kusa grass facing toward the eastern side; kusaih--the kusa grass; asit--remained; astrtam--scattered; vasudha-talam--all over the surface of the globe.
Maharaja Barhisat executed many sacrifices all over the world. He scattered kusa grasses and kept the tops of the grasses pointed eastward.
As stated in the previous verse (kriya-kandesu nisnatah), Maharaja Barhisat dived very deeply into the fruitive activities of sacrifice. This means that as soon as he finished one yajna in one place, he began performing another yajna in the immediate vicinity. At the present moment there is a similar need to perform sankirtana-yajna all over the world. The Krsna consciousness movement has started performing sankirtana-yajna in different places, and it has been experienced that wherever sankirtana-yajna is performed, many thousands of people gather and take part in it. Imperceptible auspiciousness achieved in this connection should be continued all over the world. The members of the Krsna consciousness movement should perform sankirtana-yajnas one after another, so much that all the people of the world will either jokingly or seriously chant Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare. Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare, and thus they will derive the benefit of cleansing the heart. The holy name of the Lord (harer nama) is so powerful that whether it is chanted jokingly or seriously the effect of vibrating this transcendental sound will be equally distributed. It is not possible at the present moment to perform repeated yajnas as Maharaja Barhisat performed, but it is within our means to perform sankirtana-yajna, which does not cost anything. One can sit down anywhere and chant Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare. Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. If the surface of the globe is overflooded with the chanting of the Hare Krsna mantra, the people of the world will be very, very happy.
yam viksya caru-sarvangim
cakame 'gnih sukim iva
samudrim--unto the daughter of the ocean; deva-deva-uktam--being advised by the supreme demigod, Lord Brahma; upayeme--married; satadrutim--of the name Satadruti; yam--whom; viksya--seeing; caru--very attractive; sarva-angim--all the features of the body; kisorim--youthful; susthu--sufficiently; alankrtam--decorated with ornaments; parikramantim--circumambulating; udvahe--in the marriage ceremony; cakame--being attracted; agnih--the fire-god; sukim--unto Suki; iva--like.
Maharaja Barhisat--henceforward known as Pracinabarhi--was ordered by the supreme demigod Lord Brahma to marry the daughter of the ocean named Satadruti. Her bodily features were completely beautiful, and she was very young. She was decorated with the proper garments, and when she came into the marriage arena and began circumambulating it, the fire-god Agni became so attracted to her that he desired her company, exactly as he had formerly desired to enjoy Suki.
In this verse the word susthv-alankrtam is significant. According to the Vedic system, when a girl is married, she is very profusely and gorgeously decorated with costly saris and jewelry, and during the marriage ceremony the bride circumambulates the bridegroom seven times. After this, the bridegroom and bride look at one another and become attracted for life. When the bridegroom finds the bride very beautiful, the attraction between them immediately becomes very strongly fixed. As stated in Srimad-Bhagavatam, men and women are naturally attracted to one another, and when they are united by marriage that attraction becomes very strong. Being so strongly attracted, the bridegroom attempts to set up a nice homestead and eventually a good field for producing grains. Then children come, then friends and then wealth. In this way the male becomes more and more entangled in the material conceptions of life, and he begins to think, "This is mine," and"it is I who am acting." In this way the illusion of material existence is perpetuated.
The words sukim iva are also significant, for the fire-god Agni became attracted by the beauty of Satadruti while she was circumambulating the bridegroom Pracinabarhi, just as he had previously been attracted to the beauty of Suki, the wife of Saptarsi. When the fire-god had been present long ago at the assembly of Saptarsi, he was attracted by the beauty of Suki when she was circumambulating in the same way. Agni's wife, named Svaha, took the form of Suki and enjoyed sex life with Agni. Not only the fire-god Agni but the heavenly god Indra and sometimes even Lord Brahma and Lord Siva--all very highly situated demigods--are subject to being attracted by sex at any time. The sex drive is so strong in the living entities that the whole material world is running on sex attraction only, and it is due to sex attraction that one remains in the material world and is obliged to accept different types of bodies. The attraction of sex life is more clearly explained in the next verse.
vijitah suryaya diksu
vibudha--learned; asura--the demons; gandharva--the denizens of Gandharvaloka; muni--great sages; siddha--the denizens of Siddhaloka; nara--the inhabitants of the earthly planets; uragah--denizens of Nagaloka; vijitah--captivated; suryaya--by the new bride; diksu--in all directions; kvanayantya--tinkling; eva--only; nupuraih--by her ankle bells.
While Satadruti was thus being married, the demons, the denizens of Gandharvaloka, the great sages, and the denizens of Siddhaloka, the earthly planets and Nagaloka, although highly exalted, were all captivated by the tinkling of her ankle bells.
Generally a woman becomes more beautiful when, after an early marriage, she gives birth to a child. To give birth to a child is the natural function of a woman, and therefore a woman becomes more and more beautiful as she gives birth to one child after another. In the case of Satadruti, however, she was so beautiful that she attracted the whole universe at her marriage ceremony. Indeed, she attracted all the learned and exalted demigods simply by the tinkling of her ankle bells. This indicates that all the demigods wanted to see her beauty completely, but they were not able to see it because she was fully dressed and covered with ornaments. Since they could only see the feet of Satadruti, they became attracted by her ankle bells, which tinkled as she walked. In other words, the demigods became captivated by her simply by hearing the tinkling of her ankle bells. They did not have to see her complete beauty. It is sometimes understood that a person becomes lusty just by hearing the tinkling of bangles on the hands of women or the tinkling of ankle bells, or just by seeing a woman's sari. Thus it is concluded that woman is the complete representation of maya. Although Visvamitra Muni was engaged in practicing mystic yoga with closed eyes, his transcendental meditation was broken when he heard the tinkling of bangles on the hands of Menaka. In this way Visvamitra Muni became a victim of Menaka and fathered a child who is universally celebrated as Sakuntala. The conclusion is that no one can save himself from the attraction of woman, even though he be an exalted demigod or an inhabitant of the higher planets. Only a devotee of the Lord, who is attracted by Krsna, can escape the lures of woman. Once one is attracted by Krsna, the illusory energy of the world cannot attract him.
pracinabarhisah--of King Pracinabarhi; putrah--sons; satadrutyam--in the womb of Satadruti; dasa--ten; abhavan--became manifest; tulya--equally; nama--name; vratah--vow; sarve--all; dharma--religiosity; snatah--completely merged in; pracetasah--all of them being designated as Pracetas.
King Pracinabarhi begot ten children in the womb of Satadruti. All of them were equally endowed with religiosity, and all of them were known as the Pracetas.
The word dharma-snatah is significant, for the ten children were all merged in the practice of religion. In addition, they possessed all good qualities. One is supposed to be perfect when one is perfectly religious, perfect in the execution of one's vows to render devotional service, perfect in knowledge, perfect in good behavior, and so on. All the Pracetas were on the same level of perfection.
tapase 'rnavam avisan
pitra--by the father; adistah--being ordered by; praja-sarge--in the matter of begetting children; tapase--for executing austerity; arnavam--in the ocean; avisan--entered; dasa-varsa--ten years; sahasrani--such thousands; tapasa--by their austerity; arcan--worshiped; tapah--of austerity; patim--the master.
When all these Pracetas were ordered by their father to marry and beget children, they all entered the ocean and practiced austerities and penances for ten thousand years. Thus they worshiped the master of all austerity, the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
Sometimes great sages and ascetics enter the Himalaya Mountains in order to find seclusion from the turmoil of the world. It appears, however, that all the Pracetas, the sons of Pracinabarhi, entered the depths of the ocean to perform austerity in a secluded place. Since they performed austerities for ten thousand years, this incident took place in the Satya-yuga, when people used to live for a hundred thousand years. It is also significant that by their austerity they worshiped the master of austerity, Sri Krsna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. If one wants to perform austerities and penances in order to attain the supreme goal, one must attain the favor of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. If one achieves the favor of the Supreme Lord, it is to be understood that he has finished all kinds of austerities and penances and has attained efficiency in their execution. On the other hand, if one does not attain the perfect stage of devotional service, all austerities and penances actually have no meaning, for without the Supreme Lord no one can attain the highest results derived from performing them. As stated in Bhagavad-gita (5.29), Lord Sri Krsna is the master of all penances and sacrifices. Bhoktaram yajna-tapasam sarva-loka-mahesvaram. Thus the desired result of performing austerities may be derived from Lord Krsna.
In Srimad-Bhagavatam (3.33.7) it is stated:
aho bata sva-paco 'to gariyan
yaj-jihvagre vartate nama tubhyam
tepus tapas te juhuvuh sasnur arya
brahmanucur nama grnanti ye te
Even if a person is born in a family of candalas--the lowest birth one can get in human society--he is glorious if he chants the holy names of the Lord, for it is to be understood that by such chanting a devotee definitely proves that he underwent all kinds of austerities in his previous life. By the grace of Lord Caitanya, one who chants the maha-mantra (Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare. Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare) attains the highest perfectional stage, which had previously been attained by people who entered the ocean and executed austerities for ten thousand years. In this age of Kali, if a person does not take advantage of chanting the Hare Krsna mantra, which is offered as a great concession to the fallen human beings of this age, it is to be understood that he is very much bewildered by the illusory energy of the Lord.
yad uktam pathi drstena
tad dhyayanto japantas ca
pujayantas ca samyatah
yat--that; uktam--said; pathi--on the way; drstena--while meeting; girisena--by Lord Siva; prasidata--being very much satisfied; tat--that; dhyayantah--meditating; japantah ca--chanting also; pujayantah ca--worshiping also; samyatah--with great control.
When all the sons of Pracinabarhi left home to execute austerities, they met Lord Siva, who, out of great mercy, instructed them about the Absolute Truth. All the sons of Pracinabarhi meditated upon the instructions, chanting and worshiping them with great care and attention.
It is clear that to perform austerities or penances, or, for that matter, any form of devotional service, one has to be guided by a spiritual master. Here it is clearly stated that the ten sons of Maharaja Pracinabarhi were favored by the appearance of Lord Siva, who, out of great kindness, gave them instructions regarding the execution of austerities. Lord Siva actually became the spiritual master of the ten sons, and in turn his disciples took his words so seriously that simply by meditating upon his instructions (dhyayantah) they became perfect. This is the secret of success. After being initiated and receiving the orders of the spiritual master, the disciple should unhesitatingly think about the instructions or orders of the spiritual master and should not allow himself to be disturbed by anything else. This is also the verdict of Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura, who, while explaining a verse of Bhagavad-gita (vyavasayatmika buddhir ekeha kuru-nandana, Bg. 2.41), points out that the order of the spiritual master is the life substance of the disciple. The disciple should not consider whether he is going back home, back to Godhead; his first business should be to execute the order of his spiritual master. Thus a disciple should always meditate on the order of the spiritual master, and that is perfectional meditation. Not only should he meditate upon that order, but he should find out the means by which he can perfectly worship and execute it.
yathasit pathi sangamah
yad utaha harah pritas
tan no brahman vadarthavat
vidurah uvaca--Vidura inquired; pracetasam--of all the Pracetas; giritrena--by Lord Siva; yatha--just as; asit--it was; pathi--on the road; sangamah--meeting; yat--which; uta aha--said; harah--Lord Siva; pritah--being pleased; tat--that; nah--unto us; brahman--O great brahmana; vada--speak; artha-vat--with clear meaning.
Vidura asked Maitreya: My dear brahmana, why did the Pracetas meet Lord Siva on the way? Please tell me how the meeting happened, how Lord Siva became very pleased with them and how he instructed them. Certainly such talks are important, and I wish that you please be merciful upon me and describe them.
Whenever there are some important talks between a devotee and the Lord or between exalted devotees, one should be very much curious to hear them. At the meeting of Naimisaranya, where Suta Gosvami spoke Srimad-Bhagavatam to all the great sages, Suta Gosvami was also asked about the talks between Maharaja Pariksit and Sukadeva Gosvami, for the sages believed that the talks between Sukadeva Gosvami and Maharaja Pariksit must have been as important as the talks between Lord Krsna and Arjuna. As everyone is still eager to learn the subject of Bhagavad-gita in order to become perfectly enlightened, Vidura was similarly eager to learn from the great sage Maitreya about the talks between Lord Siva and the Pracetas.
sangamah khalu viprarse
durlabho munayo dadhyur
asangad yam abhipsitam
sangamah--association; khalu--certainly; vipra-rse--O best of the brahmanas; sivena--along with Lord Siva; iha--in this world; saririnam--those who are encaged in material bodies; durlabhah--very rare; munayah--great sages; dadhyuh--engaged themselves in meditation; asangat--being detached from anything else; yam--unto whom; abhipsitam--desiring.
The great sage Vidura continued: O best of the brahmanas, it is very difficult for living entities encaged within this material body to have personal contact with Lord Siva. Even great sages who have no material attachments do not contact him, despite their always being absorbed in meditation to attain his personal contact.
Since Lord Siva does not incarnate himself unless there is some special reason, it is very difficult for an ordinary person to contact him. However, Lord Siva does descend on a special occasion when he is ordered by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. In this regard, it is stated in the Padma Purana that Lord Siva appeared as a brahmana in the age of Kali to preach the Mayavada philosophy, which is nothing but a type of Buddhist philosophy. It is stated in Padma Purana:
pracchannam bauddham ucyate
mayaiva vihitam devi
Lord Siva, speaking to Parvati-devi, foretold that he would spread the Mayavada philosophy in the guise of a sannyasi brahmana just to eradicate Buddhist philosophy. This sannyasi was Sripada Sankaracarya. In order to overcome the effects of Buddhist philosophy and spread Vedanta philosophy, Sripada Sankaracarya had to make some compromise with the Buddhist philosophy, and as such he preached the philosophy of monism, for it was required at that time. Otherwise there was no need for his preaching Mayavada philosophy. At the present moment there is no need for Mayavada philosophy or Buddhist philosophy, and Lord Caitanya rejected both of them. This Krsna consciousness movement is spreading the philosophy of Lord Caitanya and rejecting the philosophy of both classes of Mayavadi. Strictly speaking, both Buddhist philosophy and Sankara's philosophy are but different types of Mayavada dealing on the platform of material existence. Neither of these philosophies has spiritual significance. There is spiritual significance only after one accepts the philosophy of Bhagavad-gita, which culminates in surrendering unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Generally people worship Lord Siva for some material benefit, and although they cannot see him personally, they derive great material profit by worshiping him.
atmaramo 'pi yas tv asya
saktya yukto vicarati
ghoraya bhagavan bhavah
atma-aramah--self-satisfied; api--although he is; yah--one who is; tu--but; asya--this; loka--material world; kalpasya--when manifested; radhase--for the matter of helping its existence; saktya--potencies; yuktah--being engaged; vicarati--he acts; ghoraya--very dangerous; bhagavan--His Lordship; bhavah--Siva.
Lord Siva, the most powerful demigod, second only to Lord Visnu, is self-sufficient. Although he has nothing to aspire for in the material world, for the benefit of those in the material world he is always busily engaged everywhere and is accompanied by his dangerous energies like goddess Kali and goddess Durga.
Lord Siva is known as the greatest devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He is known as the best of all types of Vaisnavas (vaisnavanam yatha sambhuh). Consequently, Lord Siva has a Vaisnava sampradaya, the disciplic succession known as the Rudra-sampradaya. Just as there is a Brahma-sampradaya coming directly from Lord Brahma, the Rudra-sampradaya comes directly from Lord Siva. Lord Siva is one of the twelve great personalities, as stated in Srimad-Bhagavatam (6.3.20):
svayambhur naradah sambhuh
kumarah kapilo manuh
prahlado janako bhismo
balir vaiyasakir vayam
These are twelve great authorities in preaching God consciousness. The name Sambhu means Lord Siva. His disciplic succession is also known as the Visnusvami-sampradaya, and the current Visnusvami-sampradaya is also known as the Vallabha-sampradaya. The current Brahma-sampradaya is known as the Madhva-Gaudiya-sampradaya. Even though Lord Siva appeared to preach Mayavada philosophy, at the end of his pastime in the form of Sankaracarya, he preached the Vaisnava philosophy: bhaja govindam bhaja govindam bhaja govindam mudha-mate. He stressed worshiping Lord Krsna, or Govinda, three times in this verse and especially warned his followers that they could not possibly achieve deliverance, or mukti, simply by word jugglery and grammatical puzzles. If one is actually serious to attain mukti, he must worship Lord Krsna. That is Sripada Sankaracarya's last instruction.
Herein it is mentioned that Lord Siva is always accompanied by his material energy (saktya ghoraya). Material energy--goddess Durga, or goddess Kali--is always under his control. Goddess Kali and Durga serve him by killing all the asuras, or demons. Sometimes Kali becomes so infuriated that she indiscriminately kills all kinds of asuras. There is a popular picture of goddess Kali in which she wears a garland composed of the heads of the asuras and holds in her left hand a captured head and in her right hand a great khadga, or chopper, for killing asuras. Great wars are symbolic representations of Kali's devastation of the asuras and are actually conducted by the goddess Kali.
Asuras try to pacify the goddess Kali, or Durga, by worshiping her in material opulence, but when the asuras become too intolerable, goddess Kali does not discriminate in killing them wholesale. Asuras do not know the secret of the energy of Lord Siva, and they prefer to worship goddess Kali or Durga or Lord Siva for material benefit. Due to their demoniac character, they are reluctant to surrender to Lord Krsna, as indicated by Bhagavad-gita (7.15):
na mam duskrtino mudhah
asuram bhavam asritah
Lord Siva's duty is very dangerous because he has to employ the energy of goddess Kali (or Durga). In another popular picture the goddess Kali is sometimes seen standing on the prostrate body of Lord Siva, which indicates that sometimes Lord Siva has to fall down flat in order to stop goddess Kali from killing the asuras. Since Lord Siva controls the great material energy (goddess Durga), worshipers of Lord Siva attain very opulent positions within this material world. Under Lord Siva's direction, a worshiper of Lord Siva gets all kinds of material facilities. In contrast, a Vaisnava, or worshiper of Lord Visnu, gradually becomes poorer in material possessions because Lord Visnu does not trick His devotees into becoming materially entangled by possessions. Lord Visnu gives His devotees intelligence from within, as stated in Bhagavad-gita (10.10):
dadami buddhi-yogam tam
yena mam upayanti te
"To those who are constantly devoted and worship Me with love, I give the understanding by which they can come to Me."
Thus Lord Visnu gives intelligence to His devotee so that the devotee can make progress on the path back home, back to Godhead. Since a devotee has nothing to do with any kind of material possession, he does not come under the control of goddess Kali, or the goddess Durga.
Lord Siva is also in charge of the tamo-guna, or the mode of ignorance in this material world. His potency, the goddess Durga, is described as keeping all living entities in the darkness of ignorance (ya devi sarva-bhutesu nidra-rupam samsthita). Both Lord Brahma and Lord Siva are incarnations of Lord Visnu, but Lord Brahma is in charge of the creation whereas Lord Siva is in charge of the destruction, which he carries out with the help of his material energy, goddess Kali, or goddess Durga. Thus in this verse Lord Siva is described as being accompanied by dangerous potencies (saktya ghoraya), and that is the actual position of Lord Siva.
pracetasah pitur vakyam
disam praticim prayayus
maitreyah uvaca--the great sage Maitreya continued to speak; pracetasah--all the sons of King Pracinabarhi; pituh--of the father; vakyam--words; sirasa--on the head; adaya--accepting; sadhavah--all pious; disam--direction; praticim--western; prayayuh--went away; tapasi--in austerities; adrta--accepting seriously; cetasah--in the heart.
The great sage Maitreya continued: My dear Vidura, because of their pious nature, all the sons of Pracinabarhi very seriously accepted the words of their father with heart and soul, and with these words on their heads, they went toward the west to execute their father's order.
In this verse sadhavah (meaning "pious" or "well behaved") is very important, especially at the present moment. It is derived from the word sadhu. A perfect sadhu is one who is always engaged in the devotional service of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Pracinabarhi's sons are described as sadhavah because of their complete obedience to their father. The father, king and spiritual master are supposed to be representatives of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and as such they have to be respected as the Supreme Lord. It is the duty of the father, the spiritual master and the king to regulate their subordinates in such a way that they ultimately become fully unalloyed devotees of the Supreme Lord. That is the duty of the superiors, and it is the duty of the subordinates to obey their orders perfectly and in a disciplined way. The word sirasa ("on their heads") is also significant, for the Pracetas accepted the orders of their father and carried them on their heads, which means they accepted them in complete surrender.
sa-samudram upa vistirnam
apasyan sumahat sarah
mahan-mana iva svaccham
sa-samudram--almost near the ocean; upa--more or less; vistirnam--very wide and long; apasyan--they saw; su-mahat--very great; sarah--reservoir of water; mahat--great soul; manah--mind; iva--like; su-accham--clear; prasanna--joyful; salila--water; asayam--taken shelter of.
While traveling, the Pracetas happened to see a great reservoir of water which seemed almost as big as the ocean. The water of this lake was so calm and quiet that it seemed like the mind of a great soul, and its inhabitants, the aquatics, appeared very peaceful and happy to be under the protection of such a watery reservoir.
The word sa-samudra means "near the sea." The reservoir of water was like a bay, for it was not very far from the sea. The word upa, meaning "more or less," is used in many ways, as in the word upapati, which indicates a husband "more or less," that is to say, a lover who is acting like a husband. Upa also means "greater," "smaller" or "nearer." Considering all these points, the reservoir of water which was seen by the Pracetas while they were traveling was actually a large bay or lake. And unlike the sea or ocean, which has turbulent waves, this reservoir was very calm and quiet. Indeed, the water was so clear that it seemed like the mind of some great soul. There may be many great souls--jnanis, yogis and bhaktas, or pure devotees, are also called great souls--but they are very rarely found. One can find many great souls amongst yogis and jnanis, but a truly great soul, a pure devotee of the Lord, who is fully surrendered to the Lord, is very rarely found (sa mahatma sudurlabhah, Bg. 7.19). A devotee's mind is always calm, quiet and desireless because he is always anyabhilasita-sunyam, having no desire other than to serve Krsna as His personal servant, friend, father, mother or conjugal lover. Due to his association with Krsna, a devotee is always very calm and cool. It is also significant that within that reservoir all the aquatics were also very calm and quiet. Because the disciples of a devotee have taken shelter of a great soul, they become very calm and quiet and are not agitated by the waves of the material world.
This material world is often described as an ocean of nescience. In such an ocean, everything is agitated. The mind of a great devotee is also like an ocean or a very large lake, but there is no agitation. As stated in Bhagavad-gita (2.41): vyavasayatmika buddhir ekeha kuru-nandana. Those who are fixed in the service of the Lord are not agitated by anything. It is also stated in Bhagavad-gita (6.22): yasmin sthito na duhkhena gurunapi vicalyate. Even if he suffers some reversals in life, a devotee is never agitated. Therefore whoever takes shelter of a great soul or a great devotee becomes pacified. In the Caitanya-caritamrta (Madhya 19.149) it is stated: krsna-bhakta--niskama, ataeva 'santa.' A devotee of Lord Krsna is always peaceful because he has no desire, whereas the yogis, karmis and jnanis have so many desires to fulfill. One may argue that the devotees have desires, for they wish to go home, back to Godhead, but such a desire does not agitate the mind. Although he wishes to go back to Godhead, a devotee is satisfied in any condition of life. Consequently, the word mahan-manah is used in this verse to indicate that the reservoir of water was as calm and quiet as the mind of a great devotee.
nila--blue; rakta--red; utpala--lotus; ambhah-ja--born from the water; kahlara--another kind of lotus; indivara--another kind of lotus; akaram--the mine; hamsa--swans; sarasa--cranes; cakrahva--the ducks of the name; karandava--birds of the name; nikujitam--vibrated by their sounds.
In that great lake there were different types of lotus flowers. Some of them were bluish, and some of them were red. Some of them grew at night, some in the day and some, like the indivara lotus flower, in the evening. Combined together, the lotus flowers filled the lake so full that the lake appeared to be a great mine of such flowers. Consequently, on the shores there were swans and cranes, cakravaka, karandava and other beautiful water birds standing about.
The word akaram ("mine") is significant in this verse, for the reservoir of water appeared like a mine from which different types of lotus flowers were produced. Some of the lotus flowers grew during the day, some at night and some in the evening, and accordingly they had different names and different colors. All these flowers were present on that lake, and because the lake was so calm and quiet and filled with lotus flowers, superior birds, like swans, cakravakas and karandavas, stood on the shores and vibrated their different songs, making the entire scene attractive and beautiful. As there are different types of human beings, according to the association of the three qualities of material nature, there are similarly different types of birds, bees, trees, etc. Everything is divided according to the three qualities of material nature. Birds like swans and cranes, who enjoy clear waters and lotus flowers, are different from crows, who enjoy filthy places. Similarly, there are persons who are controlled by the modes of ignorance and passion and those who are controlled by the mode of goodness. The creation is so varied that there are always varieties found in every society. Thus on the bank of this lake all the superior birds lived to enjoy that atmosphere created by that great reservoir filled with lotus flowers.
matta--mad; bhramara--bumblebees; sau-svarya--with great humming; hrsta--joyfully; roma--hair on the body; lata--creepers; anghripam--trees; padma--lotus flower; kosa--whorl; rajah--saffron; diksu--in all directions; viksipat--throwing away; pavana--air; utsavam--festival.
There were various trees and creepers on all sides of the lake, and there were mad bumblebees humming all about them. The trees appeared to be very jolly due to the sweet humming of the bumblebees, and the saffron, which was contained in the lotus flowers, was being thrown into the air. These all created such an atmosphere that it appeared as though a festival were taking place there.
Trees and creepers are also different types of living beings. When bumblebees come upon trees and creepers to collect honey, certainly such plants become very happy. On such an occasion the wind also takes advantage of the situation by throwing pollen or saffron contained in the lotus flowers. All this combines with the sweet vibration created by the swans and the calm of the water. The Pracetas considered such a place to be like a continuous festival. From this description it appears that the Pracetas reached Sivaloka, which is supposed to be situated near the Himalaya Mountains.
tatra gandharvam akarnya
visismyu raja-putras te
tatra--there; gandharvam--musical sounds; akarnya--hearing; divya--heavenly; marga--symmetrical; manah-haram--beautiful; visismyuh--they became amazed; raja-putrah--all the sons of King Barhisat; te--all of them; mrdanga--drums; panava--kettledrums; adi--all together; anu--always.
The sons of the King became very much amazed when they heard vibrations from various drums and kettledrums along with other orderly musical sounds pleasing to the ear.
In addition to the various flowers and living entities about the lake, there were also many musical vibrations. The void of the impersonalists, which has no variegatedness, is not at all pleasing compared with such a scene. Actually one has to attain the perfection of sac-cid-ananda, eternity, bliss and knowledge. Because the impersonalists deny these varieties of creation, they cannot actually enjoy transcendental bliss. The place where the Pracetas arrived was the abode of Lord Siva. Impersonalists are generally worshipers of Lord Siva, but Lord Siva is never without variety in his abode. Thus wherever one goes, whether to the planet of Lord Siva, Lord Visnu or Lord Brahma, there is variety to be enjoyed by persons full in knowledge and bliss.
tarhy eva sarasas tasman
tarhi--in that very moment; eva--certainly; sarasah--from the water; tasmat--therefrom; niskramantam--coming out; saha-anugam--accompanied by great souls; upagiyamanam--glorified by the followers; amara-pravaram--the chief of the demigods; vibudha-anugaih--followed by his associates; tapta-hema--molten gold; nikaya-abham--bodily features; siti-kantham--blue throat; tri-locanam--with three eyes; prasada--merciful; su-mukham--beautiful face; viksya--seeing; pranemuh--offered obeisances; jata--aroused; kautukah--being amazed by the situation.
The Pracetas were fortunate to see Lord Siva, the chief of the demigods, emerging from the water with his associates. His bodily luster was just like molten gold, his throat was bluish, and he had three eyes, which looked very mercifully upon his devotees. He was accompanied by many musicians, who were glorifying him. As soon as the Pracetas saw Lord Siva, they immediately offered their obeisances in great amazement and fell down at the lotus feet of the lord.
The word vibudhanugaih indicates that Lord Siva is always accompanied by the denizens of the higher planets known as Gandharvas and Kinnaras. They are very expert in musical science, and Lord Siva is worshiped by them constantly. In pictures, Lord Siva is generally painted white, but here we find that the color of his skin is not exactly white but like molten gold, or a glowing yellowish color. Because Lord Siva is always very, very merciful, his name is Asutosa. Amongst all the demigods, Lord Siva can be pacified even by the lowest class of men, who need only offer him obeisances and leaves of a bael tree. Thus his name is Asutosa, which means that he is pleased very quickly.
Generally those who are very fond of material prosperity approach Lord Siva for such benediction. The lord, being very merciful, quickly awards all the blessings the devotee asks of him. The demons take advantage of this leniency and sometimes take benedictions from Lord Siva which can be very dangerous to others. For instance, Vrkasura took a benediction from Lord Siva by which he could kill everyone he touched on the head. Although Lord Siva sometimes very liberally gives such benedictions to his devotees, the difficulty is that the demons, being very cunning, sometimes want to experiment improperly with such benedictions. For instance, after receiving his benediction, Vrkasura tried to touch the head of Lord Siva. Devotees of Lord Visnu, however, have no desire for such benedictions, and Lord Visnu does not give His devotees benedictions which would cause disturbance to the whole world.
sa tan prapannarti-haro
pritah pritan uvaca ha
sah--Lord Siva; tan--them; prapanna-arti-harah--one who drives away all kinds of dangers; bhagavan--the lord; dharma-vatsalah--very much fond of religious principles; dharma-jnan--persons who are aware of religious principles; sila-sampannan--very well behaved; pritah--being pleased; pritan--of very gentle behavior; uvaca--talked with them; ha--in the past.
Lord Siva became very pleased with the Pracetas because generally Lord Siva is the protector of pious persons and persons of gentle behavior. Being very much pleased with the princes, he began to speak as follows.
The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Visnu, or Krsna, is known as bhakta-vatsala, and herein we find Lord Siva described as dharma-vatsala. Of course, the word dharma-vatsala refers to a person who lives according to religious principles. That is understood. Nonetheless, these two words have additional significance. Sometimes Lord Siva has to deal with persons who are in the modes of passion and ignorance. Such persons are not always very much religious and pious in their activities, but since they worship Lord Siva for some material profit, they sometimes obey the religious principles. As soon as Lord Siva sees that his devotees are following religious principles, he blesses them. The Pracetas, sons of Pracinabarhi, were naturally very pious and gentle, and consequently Lord Siva was immediately pleased with them. Lord Siva could understand that the princes were sons of Vaisnavas, and as such Lord Siva offered prayers to the Supreme Personality of Godhead as follows.
yuyam vedisadah putra
viditam vas cikirsitam
anugrahaya bhadram va
evam me darsanam krtam
sri-rudrah uvaca--Lord Siva began to speak; yuyam--all of you; vedisadah--of King Pracinabarhi; putrah--sons; viditam--knowing; vah--your; cikirsitam--desires; anugrahaya--for the matter of showing you mercy; bhadram--all good fortune unto you; vah--all of you; evam--thus; me--my; darsanam--audience; krtam--you have done.
Lord Siva said: You are all the sons of King Pracinabarhi, and I wish all good fortune to you. I also know what you are going to do, and therefore I am visible to you just to show my mercy upon you.
By these words Lord Siva indicates that what the princes were going to do was known to him. It is a fact that they were going to worship Lord Visnu by severe austerities and penances. Knowing this fact, Lord Siva immediately became very pleased, as apparent by the next verse. This indicates that a person who is not yet a devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead but who desires to serve the Supreme Lord receives the benedictions of the demigods, headed by the chief demigod, Lord Siva. Thus a devotee of the Lord does not need to try to please the demigods separately. Simply by worshiping the Supreme Lord, a devotee can please all of them. Nor does he have to ask the demigods for material benedictions, for the demigods, being pleased with the devotee, automatically offer him everything that he needs. The demigods are servants of the Lord, and they are always prepared to help a devotee in all circumstances. Therefore Srila Bilvamangala Thakura said that if one has unalloyed devotion for the Supreme Lord, the goddess of liberation is ready to serve him, to say nothing of the gods of material opulences. Indeed, all the demigods are simply waiting for an opportunity to serve the devotee. Thus there is no need for a devotee of Krsna to endeavor for material opulence or liberation. By being situated in the transcendental position of devotional service, he receives all the benefits of dharma, artha, kama and moksa.
yah param ramhasah saksat
prapannah sa priyo hi me
yah--anyone; param--transcendental; ramhasah--of the controller; saksat--directly; tri-gunat--from the three modes of material nature; jiva-samjnitat--living entities called by the name jivas; bhagavantam--unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead; vasudevam--unto Krsna; prapannah--surrendered; sah--he; priyah--very dear; hi--undoubtedly; me--of me.
Lord Siva continued: Any person who is surrendered to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krsna, the controller of everything--material nature as well as the living entity--is actually very dear to me.
Now Lord Siva explains the reason he has personally come before the princes. It is because all the princes are devotees of Lord Krsna. As stated in Bhagavad-gita (7.19):
bahunam janmanam ante
jnanavan mam prapadyate
vasudevah sarvam iti
sa mahatma sudurlabhah
"After many births and deaths, he who is actually in knowledge surrenders unto Me, knowing Me to be the cause of all causes and all that is. Such a great soul is very rare."
Lord Siva is rarely seen by common men, and similarly a person who is fully surrendered unto Vasudeva, Krsna, is also very rarely seen because a person who is fully surrendered unto the Supreme Lord is very rare (sa mahatma sudurlabhah). Consequently Lord Siva came especially to see the Pracetas because they were fully surrendered unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vasudeva. Vasudeva is also mentioned in the beginning of Srimad-Bhagavatam in the mantra, om namo bhagavate vasudevaya. Since Vasudeva is the ultimate truth, Lord Siva openly proclaims that one who is a devotee of Lord Vasudeva, who is surrendered to Lord Krsna, is actually very dear to him. Lord Vasudeva, Krsna, is worshipable not only by ordinary living entities but by demigods like Lord Siva, Lord Brahma and others. Yam brahma-varunendra-rudra-marutah stuvanti divyaih stavaih (Bhag. 12.13.1). Krsna is worshiped by Lord Brahma, Lord Siva, Varuna, Indra, Candra and all other demigods. That is also the situation with a devotee. Indeed, one who takes to Krsna consciousness immediately becomes very dear to anyone who is simply finding out and beginning to understand what Krsna consciousness actually is. Similarly, all the demigods are also trying to find out who is actually surrendered to Lord Vasudeva. Because the Praceta princes were surrendered to Vasudeva, Lord Siva willingly came forth to see them.
Lord Vasudeva, or Krsna, is described in Bhagavad-gita as Purusottama. Actually He is the enjoyer (purusa) and the Supreme (uttama) as well. He is the enjoyer of everything--the prakrti and the purusa. Being influenced by the three modes of material nature, the living entity tries to dominate material nature, but actually he is not the purusa (enjoyer) but prakrti, as described in Bhagavad-gita (7.5): apareyam itas tv anyam prakrtim viddhi me param. Thus the jiva, or living entity, is actually prakrti, or the marginal energy of the Supreme Lord. Being associated with material energy, he tries to lord it over the material nature. This is also confirmed in Bhagavad-gita (15.7):
"The living entities in this conditioned world are My eternal fragmental parts. Due to conditioned life, they are struggling very hard with the six senses, which include the mind."
By endeavoring to dominate material nature, the living entity simply struggles hard for existence. Indeed, he struggles so hard to enjoy himself that he cannot even enjoy the material resources. Thus he is sometimes called prakrti, or jiva, for he is situated in the marginal potency. When the living entity is covered with the three modes of material nature, he is called jiva-samjnita. There are two kinds of living entities: one is called ksara, and the other is aksara. Ksara refers to those who have fallen down and become conditioned, and aksara refers to those who are not conditioned. The vast majority of living entities live in the spiritual world and are called aksara. They are in the position of Brahman, pure spiritual existence. They are different from those who have been conditioned by the three modes of material nature.
Being above both the ksara and aksara, Lord Krsna, Vasudeva, is described in Bhagavad-gita (15.18) as Purusottama. The impersonalists may say that Vasudeva is the impersonal Brahman, but actually the impersonal Brahman is subordinate to Krsna, as also confirmed in Bhagavad-gita (14.27): brahmano hi pratisthaham. That Krsna is the source of the impersonal Brahman is also confirmed in Brahma-samhita (5.40): yasya prabha prabhavato jagadanda-koti. The impersonal Brahman is nothing but the effulgence or bodily rays of Krsna, and in those bodily rays there are innumerable universes floating. Thus in all respects Vasudeva, Krsna, is the Supreme Lord, and Lord Siva is very satisfied with those who are completely surrendered to Him. Complete surrender is desired by Krsna, as He indicates in the last chapter of Bhagavad-gita (18.66): sarva-dharman parityajya mam ekam saranam vraja. The word saksat, meaning "directly," is very significant. There are many so-called devotees, but actually they are only karmis and jnanis, for they are not directly devotees of Lord Krsna. The karmis sometimes offer the results of their activities to Lord Vasudeva, and this offering is called karmarpanam. These are considered to be fruitive activities, for the karmis consider Lord Visnu to be one of the demigods like Lord Siva and Lord Brahma. Because they consider Lord Visnu to be on the same level with the demigods, they contend that surrendering to the demigods is as good as surrendering unto Vasudeva. This contention is denied herein because if it were true, Lord Siva would have said that surrender unto him, Lord Vasudeva, Visnu or Brahma is the same. However, Lord Siva does not say this because he himself surrenders unto Vasudeva, and whoever else surrenders unto Vasudeva is very, very dear to him. This is expressed herein openly. The conclusion is that a devotee of Lord Siva is not dear to Lord Siva, but a devotee of Lord Krsna is very dear to Lord Siva.
sva-dharma-nisthah sata-janmabhih puman
virincatam eti tatah param hi mam
avyakrtam bhagavato 'tha vaisnavam
padam yathaham vibudhah kalatyaye
sva-dharma-nisthah--one who is situated in his own dharma, or occupation; sata-janmabhih--for one hundred births; puman--a living entity; virincatam--the post of Lord Brahma; eti--gets; tatah--thereafter; param--above; hi--certainly; mam--attains me; avyakrtam--without deviation; bhagavatah--unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead; atha--therefore; vaisnavam--a pure devotee of the Lord; padam--post; yatha--as; aham--I; vibudhah--demigods; kala-atyaye--after the annihilation of the material world.
A person who executes his occupational duty properly for one hundred births becomes qualified to occupy the post of Brahma, and if he becomes more qualified, he can approach Lord Siva. A person who is directly surrendered to Lord Krsna, or Visnu, in unalloyed devotional service is immediately promoted to the spiritual planets. Lord Siva and other demigods attain these planets after the destruction of this material world.
This verse gives an idea of the highest perfection of the evolutionary process. As described by the Vaisnava poet Jayadeva Gosvami, pralaya-payodhi jale dhrtavan asi vedam. Let us begin tracing the evolutionary process from the point of devastation (pralaya), when the whole universe is filled with water. At that time there are many fishes and other aquatics, and from these aquatics evolve creepers, trees, etc. From these, insects and reptiles evolve, and from them birds, beasts and then human beings and finally civilized human beings. Now, the civilized human being is at a junction where he can make further evolutionary progress in spiritual life. Here it is stated (sva-dharma-nisthah) that when a living entity comes to a civilized form of life, there must be sva-dharma, social divisions according to one's work and qualifications. This is indicated in Bhagavad-gita (4.13):
catur-varnyam maya srstam
"According to the three modes of material nature and the work ascribed to them, the four divisions of human society were created by Me."
In civilized human society there must be the divisions of brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya and sudra, and everyone must properly execute his occupational duty in accordance with his division. Here it is described (svadharma-nisthah) that it does not matter whether one is a brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya or sudra. If one sticks to his position and properly executes his particular duty, he is considered a civilized human being. Otherwise he is no better than an animal. It is also mentioned herein that whoever executes his occupational duty (sva-dharma) for one hundred births (for instance, if a brahmana continues to act as a brahmana) becomes eligible for promotion to Brahmaloka, the planet where Lord Brahma lives. There is also a planet called Sivaloka, or Sadasivaloka, which is situated in a marginal position between the spiritual and material worlds. If, after being situated in Brahmaloka, one becomes more qualified, he is promoted to Sadasivaloka. Similarly, when one becomes even more qualified, he can attain the Vaikunthalokas. The Vaikunthalokas are targets for everyone, even the demigods, and they can be attained by a devotee who has no desire for material benefit. As indicated in Bhagavad-gita (8.16), one does not escape material miseries even if he is elevated to Brahmaloka (abrahma-bhuvanal lokah punar avartino 'rjuna). Similarly, one is not very safe even if he is promoted to Sivaloka, because the planet of Sivaloka is marginal. However, if one attains Vaikunthaloka, he attains the highest perfection of life and the end of the evolutionary process (mam upetya tu kaunteya punar janma na vidyate). In other words, it is confirmed herein that a person in human society who has developed consciousness must take to Krsna consciousness in order to be promoted to Vaikunthaloka or Krsnaloka immediately after leaving the body. Tyaktva deham punar janma naiti mam eti so 'rjuna (Bg. 4.9). A devotee who is fully in Krsna consciousness, who is not attracted by any other loka, or planet, including Brahmaloka and Sivaloka, is immediately transferred to Krsnaloka (mam eti). That is the highest perfection of life and the perfection of the evolutionary process.
atha bhagavata yuyam
priyah stha bhagavan yatha
na mad bhagavatanam ca
preyan anyo 'sti karhicit
atha--therefore; bhagavatah--devotees; yuyam--all of you; priyah--very dear to me; stha--you are; bhagavan--the Supreme Personality of Godhead; yatha--as; na--neither; mat--than me; bhagavatanam--of the devotees; ca--also; preyan--very dear; anyah--others; asti--there is; karhicit--at any time.
You are all devotees of the Lord, and as such I appreciate that you are as respectable as the Supreme Personality of Godhead Himself. I know in this way that the devotees also respect me and that I am dear to them. Thus no one can be as dear to the devotees as I am.
It is said, vaisnavanam yatha sambhuh: Lord Siva is the best of all devotees. Therefore all devotees of Lord Krsna are also devotees of Lord Siva. In Vrndavana there is Lord Siva's temple called Gopisvara. The gopis used to worship not only Lord Siva but Katyayani, or Durga, as well, but their aim was to attain the favor of Lord Krsna. A devotee of Lord Krsna does not disrespect Lord Siva, but worships Lord Siva as the most exalted devotee of Lord Krsna. Consequently whenever a devotee worships Lord Siva, he prays to Lord Siva to achieve the favor of Krsna, and he does not request material profit. In Bhagavad-gita (7.20) it is said that generally people worship demigods for some material profit. Kamais tais tair hrta jnanah. Driven by material lust, they worship demigods, but a devotee never does so, for he is never driven by material lust. That is the difference between a devotee's respect for Lord Siva and an asura's respect for him. The asura worships Lord Siva, takes some benediction from him, misuses the benediction and ultimately is killed by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who awards him liberation.
Because Lord Siva is a great devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he loves all the devotees of the Supreme Lord. Lord Siva told the Pracetas that because they were devotees of the Lord, he loved them very much. Lord Siva was not kind and merciful only to the Pracetas; anyone who is a devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead is very dear to Lord Siva. Not only are the devotees dear to Lord Siva, but he respects them as much as he respects the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Similarly, devotees of the Supreme Lord also worship Lord Siva as the most dear devotee of Lord Krsna. They do not worship him as a separate Personality of Godhead. It is stated in the list of nama-aparadhas that it is an offense to think that the chanting of the name of Hari and the chanting of Hara, or Siva, are the same. The devotees must always know that Lord Visnu is the Supreme Personality of Godhead and that Lord Siva is His devotee. A devotee should be offered respect on the level of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and sometimes even more respect. Indeed, Lord Rama, the Personality of Godhead Himself, sometimes worshiped Lord Siva. If a devotee is worshiped by the Lord, why should a devotee not be worshiped by other devotees on the same level with the Lord? This is the conclusion. From this verse it appears that Lord Siva blesses the asuras simply for the sake of formality. Actually he loves one who is devoted to the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
idam viviktam japtavyam
pavitram mangalam param
sruyatam tad vadami vah
idam--this; viviktam--very, particular; japtavyam--always to be chanted; pavitram--very pure; mangalam--auspicious; param--transcendental; nihsreyasa-karam--very beneficial; ca--also; api--certainly; sruyatam--please hear; tat--that; vadami--I am speaking; vah--unto you.
Now I shall chant one mantra which is not only transcendental, pure and auspicious, but is the best prayer for anyone who is aspiring to attain the ultimate goal of life. When I chant this mantra, please hear it carefully and attentively.
The word viviktam is very significant. No one should think of the prayers recited by Lord Siva as being sectarian; rather, they are very confidential, so much so that anyone desiring the ultimate prosperity or auspicious goal of life must take the instructions of Lord Siva and pray to and glorify the Supreme Personality of Godhead as Lord Siva himself did.
bhagavan aha tan chivah
maitreyah uvaca--the great saint Maitreya continued to speak; iti--thus; anukrosa-hrdayah--very kindhearted; bhagavan--the lord; aha--said; tan--unto the Pracetas; sivah--Lord Siva; baddha-anjalin--who were standing with folded hands; raja-putran--the sons of the King; narayana-parah--Lord Siva, the great devotee of Narayana; vacah--words.
The great sage Maitreya continued: Out of his causeless mercy, the exalted personality Lord Siva, a great devotee of Lord Narayana, continued to speak to the King's sons, who were standing with folded hands.
Lord Siva voluntarily came to bless the sons of the King as well as do something beneficial for them. He personally chanted the mantra so that the mantra would be more powerful, and he advised that the mantra be chanted by the King's sons (raja-putras). When a mantra is chanted by a great devotee, the mantra becomes more powerful. Although the Hare Krsna maha-mantra is powerful in itself, a disciple upon initiation receives the mantra from his spiritual master, for when the mantra is chanted by the spiritual master, it becomes more powerful. Lord Siva advised the sons of the King to hear him attentively, for inattentive hearing is offensive.
jitam ta atma-vid-varya-
svastaye svastir astu me
sarvasma atmane namah
sri-rudrah uvaca--Lord Siva began to speak; jitam--all glories; te--unto You; atma-vit--self-realized; varya--the best; svastaye--unto the auspicious; svastih--auspiciousness; astu--let there be; me--of me; bhavata--by You; aradhasa--by the all-perfect; raddham--worshipable; sarvasmai--the Supreme Soul; atmane--unto the Supreme Soul; namah--obeisances.
Lord Siva addressed the Supreme Personality of Godhead with the following prayer: O Supreme Personality of Godhead, all glories unto You. You are the most exalted of all self-realized souls. Since You are always auspicious for the self-realized, I wish that You be auspicious for me. You are worshipable by virtue of the all-perfect instructions You give. You are the Supersoul; therefore I offer my obeisances unto You as the supreme living being.
As soon as a devotee is inspired by the Lord to offer the Lord a prayer, the devotee immediately glorifies the Lord in the beginning by saying, "All glories unto You, my Lord." The Lord is glorified because He is considered to be the chief of all self-realized souls. As said in the Vedas (Katha Upanisad 2.2.13), nityo nityanam cetanas cetananam: the Supreme Being, the Personality of Godhead, is the chief living being amongst all living beings. There are different kinds of individual living beings--some of them are in this material world, and some are in the spiritual world. Those who are in the spiritual world are known to be completely self-realized because on the spiritual platform the living entity is not forgetful of his service to the Lord. Therefore in the spiritual world all those who are in the devotional service of the Lord are eternally fixed, for they understand the position of the Supreme Being, as well as their individual constitution. Thus amongst self-realized souls, the Lord is known as the perfectly self-realized soul. Nityo nityanam cetanas cetananam. When the individual soul is fixed in his knowledge of the Lord as the Supreme Being, he actually becomes established in an all-auspicious position. Lord Siva prays herein that his auspicious position continue eternally by virtue of the Lord's mercy upon him.
The Supreme Lord is all-perfect, and the Lord instructs that one who worships Him also becomes perfect. As stated in Bhagavad-gita (15.15): mattah smrtir jnanam apohanam ca. The Lord is situated as the Supersoul in everyone's heart, but He is so kind to His devotees that He gives them instructions by which they may continue to progress. When they receive instructions from the all-perfect, there is no chance of their being misled. This is also confirmed in Bhagavad-gita (10.10): dadami buddhi-yogam tam yena mam upayanti te. The Lord is always ready to give instructions to the pure devotee so that the devotee can advance further and further in devotional service. Since the Lord gives instructions as sarvatma, the Supersoul, Lord Siva offers Him respect with the words sarvatma atmane namah. The individual soul is called atma, and the Lord is also called atma as well as Paramatma. Being situated in everyone's heart, the Lord is known as the supreme atma. Therefore all obeisances are offered unto Him. In this regard, one may refer to the prayers of Kunti in the First Canto of Srimad-Bhagavatam (1.8.20):
katham pasyema hi striyah
The Lord is always ready to give instructions to the paramahamsas, or the topmost devotees of the Lord, who are completely liberated from all contaminations of the material world. The Lord always gives instructions to such exalted devotees to inform them how they can remain fixed in devotional service. Similarly, it is stated in the atmarama verse (Bhag. 1.7.10):
atmaramas ca munayo
nirgrantha apy urukrame
kurvanty ahaitukim bhaktim
The word atmarama refers to those who are not interested in the material world but are simply engaged in spiritual realization. Such self-realized persons are generally considered in two categories--impersonal and personal. However, impersonalists also become devotees when they are attracted by the personal transcendental qualities of the Lord. The conclusion is that Lord Siva wanted to remain a fixed devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vasudeva. As explained in the following verses, Lord Siva never desires to merge into the existence of the Supreme Lord like the impersonalists. Rather, he thinks that it would be good fortune for him to continue to be fixed in the understanding of the Lord as the Supreme Being. By this understanding, one realizes that all living entities--including Lord Siva, Lord Brahma and other demigods--are servants of the Supreme Lord.
namah--all obeisances unto You; pankaja-nabhaya--unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead, from whose navel the lotus flower emanates; bhuta-suksma--the sense objects; indriya--the senses; atmane--the origin; vasudevaya--unto Lord Vasudeva; santaya--always peaceful; kuta-sthaya--without being changed; sva-rocise--unto the supreme illumination.
My Lord, You are the origin of the creation by virtue of the lotus flower which sprouts from Your navel. You are the supreme controller of the senses and the sense objects, and You are also the all-pervading Vasudeva. You are most peaceful, and because of Your self-illuminated existence, You are not disturbed by the six kinds of transformations.
The Lord as Garbhodakasayi Visnu lies in the ocean of Garbha within this universe, and from His navel the lotus flower sprouts. Lord Brahma is generated from that lotus flower, and from Lord Brahma the creation of this material world begins. As such, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Garbhodakasayi Visnu, is the origin of the material senses and sense objects. Since Lord Siva considers himself to be one of the products of the material world, his senses are under the control of the supreme creator. The Supreme Lord is also known as Hrsikesa, master of the senses, which indicates that our senses and sense objects are formed by the Supreme Lord. As such, He can control our senses and out of His mercy engage them in the service of the master of the senses. In the conditioned state, the living entity struggles in this material world and engages his senses for material satisfaction. However, if the living entity is graced by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he can engage these very senses in the service of the Lord. Lord Siva desires not to be misled by the material senses but to engage always in the service of the Lord without being subject to contamination by materialistic influences. By the grace and help of Lord Vasudeva, who is all-pervading, one can engage his senses in devotional service without deviation, just as the Lord acts without deviation.
The words santaya kuta-sthaya sva-rocise are very significant. Although the Lord is within this material world, He is not disturbed by the waves of material existence. However, conditioned souls are agitated by six kinds of transformations; namely, they become agitated when they are hungry, when they are thirsty, when they are aggrieved, when they are illusioned, when they grow old and when they are on the deathbed. Although conditioned souls become very easily illusioned by these conditions in the material world, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, as the Supersoul, Vasudeva, is never agitated by these transformations. Therefore it is said here (kuta-sthaya) that He is always peaceful and devoid of agitation because of His prowess, which is described herein as sva-rocise, indicating that He is illuminated by His own transcendental position. In other words, the individual soul, although within the illumination of the Supreme, sometimes falls down from that illumination because of his tiny position, and when he falls down he enters into material, conditional life. The Lord, however, is not subject to such conditioning; therefore He is described as self-illuminated. Consequently any conditioned soul within this material universe can remain completely perfect when he is under the protection of Vasudeva, or when he is engaged in devotional service.
sankarsanaya--unto the master of integration; suksmaya--unto the subtle unmanifested material ingredients; durantaya--unto the unsurpassable; antakaya--unto the master of disintegration; ca--also; namah--obeisances; visva-prabodhaya--unto the master of the development of the universe; pradyumnaya--unto Lord Pradyumna; antah-atmane--unto the Supersoul in everyone's heart.
My dear Lord, You are the origin of the subtle material ingredients, the master of all integration as well as the master of all disintegration, the predominating Deity named Sankarsana, and the master of all intelligence, known as the predominating Deity Pradyumna. Therefore, I offer my respectful obeisances unto You.
The whole universe is maintained by the integrating power of the Supreme Lord, who is known in that capacity by the name Sankarsana. The material scientists may have discovered the law of gravity, which maintains the integration of objects within the material energy, yet the master of all integration can create devastation by the disintegrating blazing fire emanating from His mouth. A description of this can be found in the Eleventh Chapter of Bhagavad-gita, wherein the universal form of the Lord is described. The master of integration is also the destroyer of this world by virtue of His disintegrating energy. Sankarsana is the master of integration and disintegration, whereas Pradyumna, another feature of Lord Vasudeva, is responsible for universal growth and maintenance. The word suksmaya is significant because within this gross material body there are subtle material bodies--namely mind, intelligence and ego. The Lord in His different features (Vasudeva, Aniruddha, Pradyumna and Sankarsana) maintains both the gross and subtle material elements of this world. As mentioned in Bhagavad-gita, the gross material elements are earth, water, fire, air and ether, and the subtle material elements are mind, intelligence and ego. All of them are controlled by the Supreme Personality of Godhead as Vasudeva, Sankarsana, Pradyumna and Aniruddha, and this will be further explained in the following verse.
namo namo 'niruddhaya
namah--all my obeisances unto You; namah--obeisances again; aniruddhaya--unto Lord Aniruddha; hrsikesa--the master of the senses; indriya-atmane--the director of the senses; namah--all obeisances unto You; parama-hamsaya--unto the supreme perfect; purnaya--unto the supreme complete; nibhrta-atmane--who is situated apart from this material creation.
My Lord, as the supreme directing Deity known as Aniruddha, You are the master of the senses and the mind. I therefore offer my obeisances unto You again and again. You are known as Ananta as well as Sankarsana because of Your ability to destroy the whole creation by the blazing fire from Your mouth.
Hrsikesendriyatmane. The mind is the director of the senses, and Lord Aniruddha is the director of the mind. In order to execute devotional service, one has to fix his mind on the lotus feet of Krsna; therefore Lord Siva prays to the controller of the mind, Lord Aniruddha, to be pleased to help him engage his mind on the lotus feet of the Lord. It is stated in Bhagavad-gita (9.34): man-mana bhava mad-bhakto mad-yaji mam. namaskuru. The mind has to be engaged in meditation on the lotus feet of the Lord in order to execute devotional service. It is also stated in Bhagavad-gita (15.15), mattah smrtir jnanam apohanam ca: from the Lord come remembrance, knowledge and forgetfulness. Thus if Lord Aniruddha is pleased, He can help the mind engage in the service of the Lord. It is also indicated in this verse that Lord Aniruddha is the sun-god by virtue of His expansions. Since the predominating deity of the sun is an expansion of Lord Aniruddha, Lord Siva also prays to the sun-god in this verse.
Lord Krsna, by His quadruple expansion (Vasudeva, Sankarsana, Pradyumna and Aniruddha), is the Lord of psychic action--namely thinking, feeling, willing and acting. Lord Siva prays to Lord Aniruddha as the sun-god, who is the controlling deity of the external material elements which constitute the construction of the material body. According to Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura, the word paramahamsa is also another name for the sun-god. The sun-god is addressed herein as nibhrtatmane, which indicates that he always maintains the various planets by manipulating the rainfall. The sun-god evaporates water from the seas and oceans and then forms the water into clouds and distributes it over land. When there is sufficient rainfall grains are produced, and these grains maintain living entities in each and every planet. The sun-god is also addressed herein as purna, or complete, because the rays emanating from the sun have no end. For millions and millions of years since the creation of this universe, the sun-god has been supplying heat and light without diminution. The word paramahamsa is applied to persons who are completely cleansed. When there is sufficient sunshine, the mind remains clear and transparent--in other words, the sun-god helps the mind of the living entity to become situated on the platform of paramahamsa. Thus Lord Siva prays to Aniruddha to be kind upon him so that his mind will always be in the perfect state of cleanliness and will be engaged in the devotional service of the Lord. Just as fire sterilizes all unclean things, the sun-god also keeps everything sterilized, especially dirty things within the mind, thus enabling one to attain elevation to the platform of spiritual understanding.
nityam suci-sade namah
svarga--the heavenly planets; apavarga--the path of liberation; dvaraya--unto the door of; nityam--eternally; suci-sade--unto the most purified; namah--my obeisances unto You; namah--my obeisances; hiranya--gold; viryaya--semen; catuh-hotraya--the Vedic sacrifices of the name; tantave--unto one who expands.
My Lord, O Aniruddha, You are the authority by which the doors of the higher planetary systems and liberation are opened. You are always within the pure heart of the living entity. Therefore I offer my obeisances unto You. You are the possessor of semen which is like gold, and thus, in the form of fire, You help the Vedic sacrifices, beginning with catur-hotra. Therefore I offer my obeisances unto You.
The word svarga indicates a position in the higher or heavenly planetary systems, and the word apavarga means "liberation." Those who are attached to the karma-kandiya activities described in the Vedas are actually entangled in the three modes of material nature. The Bhagavad-gita therefore says that one should be above the dominion of fruitive activities. There are different kinds of liberation, or mukti. The best mukti is engagement in the devotional service of the Supreme Lord. Not only does Lord Aniruddha help fruitive actors by elevating them to the higher planetary systems, but He also helps the devotee engage in devotional service by dint of His inexhaustible energy. Just as heat is the source of material energy, the inspiration of Lord Aniruddha is the energy by which one can engage in executing devotional service.
nama urja ise trayyah
trpti-daya ca jivanam
namah--I offer all obeisances unto You; urje--unto the provider of the Pitrloka; ise--the provider of all the demigods; trayyah--of the three Vedas; pataye--unto the master; yajna--sacrifices; retase--unto the predominating deity of the moon planet; trpti-daya--unto Him who gives satisfaction to everyone; ca--also; jivanam--of the living entities; namah--I offer my obeisances; sarva-rasa-atmane--unto the all-pervading Supersoul.
My Lord, You are the provider of the Pitrlokas as well as all the demigods. You are the predominating deity of the moon and the master of all three Vedas. I offer my respectful obeisances unto You because You are the original source of satisfaction for all living entities.
When the living entity is born with this material world--especially as a human being--he has several obligations unto the demigods, unto the saintly persons and unto living entities in general. As enjoined in the sastras: devarsi-bhutapta-nrnam pitrnam. Thus one has an obligation to one's forefathers, the previous hierarchy. Lord Siva prays to Lord Aniruddha to give him strength so he can become free from all obligation to the Pitas, demigods, general living entities and saintly persons and completely engage himself in the devotional service of the Lord. As stated:
na kinkaro nayam rni ca rajan
sarvatmana yah saranam saranyam
gato mukundam parihrtya kartam
One becomes free from all obligations to the demigods, saintly persons, pitas, ancient forefathers, etc., if one is completely engaged in the devotional service of the Lord. Lord Siva therefore prays to Lord Aniruddha to give him strength so that he can be free from such obligations and entirely engage in the Lord s service.
Soma, or the predominating deity of the moon, is responsible for the living entity's ability to relish the taste of food through the tongue. Lord Siva prays to Lord Aniruddha to give him strength so that he will not taste anything but the prasada of the Lord. Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura has sung a verse indicating that the tongue is the most formidable enemy among all the senses. If one can control the tongue, he can easily control the other senses. The tongue can be controlled only by eating prasada offered to the Deity. Lord Siva's prayer to Lord Aniruddha is meant for this purpose (trpti-daya); he prays to Lord Aniruddha to help him be satisfied by eating only prasada offered to the Lord.
saha ojo-balaya ca
sarva--all; sattva--existence; atma--soul; dehaya--unto the body; visesaya--diversity; sthaviyase--unto the material world; namah--offering obeisances; trai-lokya--three planetary systems; palaya--maintainer; saha--along with; ojah--prowess; balaya--unto the strength; ca--also.
My dear Lord, You are the gigantic universal form which contains all the individual bodies of the living entities. You are the maintainer of the three worlds, and as such You maintain the mind, senses, body, and air of life within them. I therefore offer my respectful obeisances unto You.
As the individual body of the living entity is composed of millions of cells, germs and microbes, the universal body of the Supreme Lord similarly contains all the individual bodies of the living entities. Lord Siva is offering his obeisances to the universal body, which includes all other bodies, so that everyone's body may fully engage in devotional service. Since this individual body is composed of senses, all the senses should be engaged in devotional service. For instance, the smelling instrument, the nose, can engage in smelling the flowers offered to the lotus feet of the Lord, the hands can engage in cleansing the temple of the Lord, etc. Indeed, being the life air of every living entity, the Lord is the maintainer of the three worlds. Consequently He can induce every living entity to engage in his real life's duty with full bodily and mental strength. Thus every living entity should serve the Supreme Personality of Godhead by his prana (life), artha (wealth), intelligence and words. As stated in the Srimad-Bhagavatam (10.22.35):
dehinam iha dehisu
pranair arthair dhiya vaca
Even though one may desire to engage in the service of the Lord, without sanction one cannot do so. Lord Siva is offering his prayers in so many different ways in order to show living entities how to engage in the devotional service of the Lord.
namah punyaya lokaya
artha--meaning; lingaya--revealing; nabhase--unto the sky; namah--offering obeisances; antah--within; bahih--and without; atmane--unto the self; namah--offering obeisances; punyaya--pious activities; lokaya--for creation; amusmai--beyond death; bhuri-varcase--the supreme effulgence.
My dear Lord, by expanding Your transcendental vibrations, You reveal the actual meaning of everything. You are the all-pervading sky within and without, and You are the ultimate goal of pious activities executed both within this material world and beyond it. I therefore offer my respectful obeisances again and again unto You.
Vedic evidence is called sabda-brahma. There are many things which are beyond the perception of our imperfect senses, yet the authoritative evidence of sound vibration is perfect. The Vedas are known as sabda-brahma because evidence taken from the Vedas constitutes the ultimate understanding. This is because sabda-brahma, or the Vedas, represents the Supreme Personality of Godhead. However, the real essence of sabda-brahma is the chanting of the Hare Krsna mantra. By vibrating this transcendental sound, the meaning of everything, both material and spiritual, is revealed. This Hare Krsna is nondifferent from the Personality of Godhead. The meaning of everything is received through the air through sound vibration. The vibration may be material or spiritual, but without sound vibration no one can understand the meaning of anything. In the Vedas it is said, antar bahis ca tat sarvam vyaya narayanah sthitah: "Narayana is all-pervading, and He exists both within and without." This is also confirmed in Bhagavad-gita (13.34):
yatha prakasayaty ekah
krtsnam lokam imam ravih
ksetram ksetri tatha krtsnam
"O son of Bharata, as the sun alone illuminates all this universe, so do the living entity and the Supersoul illuminate the entire body by consciousness."
In other words, the consciousness of both the soul and Supersoul is all-pervading; the limited consciousness of the living entity is pervading the entire material body, and the supreme consciousness of the Lord is pervading the entire universe. Because the soul is present within the body, consciousness pervades the entire body; similarly, because the supreme soul, or Krsna, is present within this universe, everything is working in order. Mayadhyaksena prakrtih suyate sa-caracaram: "This material nature is working under My direction, O son of Kunti, and it is producing all moving and unmoving beings." (Bg. 9.10)
Lord Siva is therefore praying to the Personality of Godhead to be kind to us so that simply by chanting the Hare Krsna mantra we can understand everything in both the material and spiritual worlds. The word amusmai is significant in this regard because it indicates the best target one can aim for after attaining the higher planetary systems. Those who are engaged in fruitive activities (karmis) attain the higher planetary systems as a result of their past activities, and the jnanis, who seek unification or a monistic merging with the effulgence of the Supreme Lord, also attain their desired end, but in the ultimate issue, the devotees, who desire to personally associate with the Lord, are promoted to the Vaikunthalokas or Goloka Vrndavana. The Lord is described in Bhagavad-gita (10.12) as pavitram paramam, the supreme pure. This is also confirmed in this verse. Sukadeva Gosvami has stated that the cowherd boys who played with Lord Krsna were not ordinary living entities. Only after accumulating many pious activities in various births does one get the opportunity to personally associate with the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Since only the pure can reach Him, He is the supreme pure.
mrtyave duhkha-daya ca
pravrttaya--inclination; nivrttaya--disinclination; pitr-devaya--unto the master of Pitrloka; karmane--unto the resultant action of fruitive activities; namah--offering respects; adharma--irreligious; vipakaya--unto the result; mrtyave--unto death; duhkha-daya--the cause of all kinds of miserable conditions; ca--also.
My dear Lord, You are the viewer of the results of pious activities. You are inclination, disinclination and their resultant activities. You are the cause of the miserable conditions of life caused by irreligion, and therefore You are death. I offer You my respectful obeisances.
The Supreme Personality of Godhead is situated in everyone's heart, and from Him issue a living entity's inclinations and disinclinations. This is confirmed in Bhagavad-gita (15.15):
sarvasya caham hrdi sannivisto
mattah smrtir jnanam apohanam ca
"I am seated in everyone's heart, and from Me come remembrance, knowledge and forgetfulness."
The Supreme Personality of Godhead causes the asuras to forget Him and the devotees to remember Him. One's disinclinations are due to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. According to Bhagavad-gita (16.7), pravrttim ca nivrttim ca jana na vidur asurah: the asuras do not know which way one should be inclined to act and which way one should not be inclined to act. Although the asuras oppose devotional service, it is to be understood that they are inclined that way due to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Because the asuras do not like to engage in the Lord's devotional service, the Lord within gives them the intelligence to forget. Ordinary karmis desire promotion to Pitrloka, as confirmed in Bhagavad-gita (9.25). Yanti deva-vrata devan pitrn yanti pitr-vratah: "Those who worship the demigods will take birth among the demigods, and those who worship ancestors go to the ancestors."
In this verse the word duhkha-daya is also very significant, for those who are nondevotees are perpetually put into the cycle of birth and death. This is a very miserable condition. Because one's position in life is attained according to one's activities, the asuras, or nondevotees, are put into such miserable conditions.
namas ta asisam isa
namo dharmaya brhate
namah--offering obeisances; te--unto You; asisam isa--O topmost of all bestowers of benediction; manave--unto the supreme mind or supreme Manu; karana-atmane--the supreme cause of all causes; namah--offering obeisances; dharmaya--unto one who knows the best of all religion; brhate--the greatest; krsnaya--unto Krsna; akuntha-medhase--unto one whose brain activity is never checked; purusaya--the Supreme Person; puranaya--the oldest of the old; sankhya-yoga-isvaraya--the master of the principles of sankhya-yoga; ca--and.
My dear Lord, You are the topmost of all bestowers of all benediction, the oldest and supreme enjoyer amongst all enjoyers. You are the master of all the worlds' metaphysical philosophy, for You are the supreme cause of all causes, Lord Krsna. You are the greatest of all religious principles, the supreme mind, and You have a brain which is never checked by any condition. Therefore I repeatedly offer my obeisances unto You.
The words krsnaya akuntha-medhase are significant in this verse. Modern scientists have stopped their brainwork by discovering the theory of uncertainty, but factually for a living being there cannot be any brain activity which is not checked by time and space limitations. A living entity is called anu, an atomic particle of the supreme soul, and therefore his brain is also atomic. It cannot accommodate unlimited knowledge. This does not mean, however, that the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krsna, has a limited brain. What Krsna says and does is not limited by time and space. In Bhagavad-gita (7.26) the Lord says:
bhavisyani ca bhutani
mam tu veda na kascana
"O Arjuna, as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, I know everything that has happened in the past, all that is happening in the present, and all things that are yet to come. I also know all living entities; but Me no one knows."
Krsna knows everything, but one cannot know Krsna without being favored by Him. Thus for Krsna and His representative there is no question of a theory of uncertainty. What Krsna says is all perfect and certain and is applicable to the past, present and future. Nor is there any uncertainty for one who knows exactly what Krsna says. The Krsna consciousness movement is based on Bhagavad-gita as it is, as spoken by Lord Krsna, and for those who are engaged in this movement, there is no question of uncertainty.
Lord Krsna is also addressed herein as asisam isa. The great saintly personalities, sages and demigods are able to offer benedictions to ordinary living entities, but they in turn are benedicted by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Without being benedicted by Krsna, one cannot offer benediction to anyone else. The word manave, meaning "unto the supreme Manu," is also significant. The supreme Manu in Vedic literature is Svayambhuva Manu, who is an incarnation of Krsna. All the Manus are empowered incarnations of Krsna (manvantara-avatara). There are fourteen Manus in one day of Brahma, 420 in one month, all the Manus are directors of human society, ultimately Krsna is the supreme director of human society. In another sense, the word manave indicates the perfection of all kinds of mantras. The mantra delivers the conditioned soul from his bondage; so simply by chanting the mantra Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare. Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare, one can gain deliverance from any condition.
Karanatmane: everything has a cause. The theory of chance is repudiated in this verse. Because everything has its cause, there is no question of chance. Because so-called philosophers and scientists are unable to find the real cause, they foolishly say that everything happens by chance. In Brahma-samhita Krsna is described as the cause of all causes; therefore He is addressed herein as karanatmane. His very personality is the original cause of everything, the root of everything and the seed of everything. As described in the Vedanta-sutra (1.1.2), janmady asya yatah: the Absolute Truth is the supreme cause of all emanations.
The word sankhya-yogesvaraya is also significant herein, for Krsna is described in Bhagavad-gita as Yogesvara, the master of all mystic powers. Without possessing inconceivable mystic powers, one cannot be accepted as God. In this age of Kali, those who have a little fragmental portion of mystic power claim to be God, but such pseudo Gods can only be accepted as fools, for only Krsna is the Supreme Person who possesses all mystic and yogic perfections. The sankhya-yoga system popular at the present moment was propounded by the atheist Kapila, but the original sankhya-yoga system was propounded by an incarnation of Krsna also named Kapila, the son of Devahuti. Similarly, Dattatreya, another incarnation of Krsna, also explained the sankhya-yoga system. Thus Krsna is the origin of all sankhya-yoga systems and mystic yoga powers.
The words purusaya puranaya are also worthy of special attention. In Brahma-samhita, Krsna is accepted as the adi-purusa, the original person, or the original enjoyer. In Bhagavad-gita, Lord Krsna is also accepted as purana-purusa, the oldest person. Although He is the oldest of all personalities, He is also the youngest of all, or nava-yauvana. Another significant word is dharmaya. Since Krsna is the original propounder of all kinds of religious principles, it is said: dharmam tu saksad bhagavat-pranitam (Bhag. 6.3.19). No one can introduce a new type of religion, for religion is already there, having been established by Lord Krsna. In Bhagavad-gita Krsna informs us of the original dharma and asks us to give up all kinds of religious principles. The real dharma is surrender unto Him. In the Mahabharata, it is also said:
ye ca veda-vido vipra
ye cadhyatma-vido janah
te vadanti mahatmanam
krsnam dharmam sanatanam
The purport is that one who has studied the Vedas perfectly, who is a perfect vipra, or knower of the Vedas, who knows what spiritual life actually is, speaks about Krsna, the Supreme Person, as one's sanatana-dharma. Lord Siva therefore teaches us the principles of sanatana-dharma.
namo vaco vibhutaye
sakti-traya--three kinds of energies; sametaya--unto the reservoir; midhuse--unto Rudra; ahankrta-atmane--the source of egotism; cetah--knowledge; akuti--eagerness to work; rupaya--unto the form of; namah--my obeisances; vacah--unto the sound; vibhutaye--unto the different types of opulences.
My dear Lord, You are the supreme controller of the worker, sense activities and results of sense activities [karma]. Therefore You are the controller of the body, mind and senses. You are also the supreme controller of egotism, known as Rudra. You are the source of knowledge and the activities of the Vedic injunctions.
Everyone acts under the dictation of the ego. Therefore Lord Siva is trying to purify false egotism through the mercy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Since Lord Siva, or Rudra, is himself the controller of egotism, he indirectly wants to be purified by the mercy of the Lord so that his real egotism can be awakened. Of course, Lord Rudra is always spiritually awake, but for our benefit he is praying in this way. For the am spirit soul." But in its actual position, the spirit soul has devotional activities to perform. Therefore Lord Siva prays to be engaged both in mind and in action in the devotional service of the Supreme Lord according to the direction of the Vedas. This is the process for purifying false egotism. Cetah means "knowledge." Without perfect knowledge, one cannot act perfectly. The real source of knowledge is the vacah, or sound vibration, given by Vedic instructions. Here the word vacah, or vibration, means the Vedic vibration. The origin of creation is sound vibration, and if the sound vibration is clear and purified, perfect knowledge and perfect activities actually become manifest. This is enacted by the chanting of the maha-mantra, Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare. Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. Thus Lord Siva is praying again and again for the purification of body, mind and activities through the purification of knowledge and action under the pure directions of the Vedas. Lord Siva prays to the Supreme Personality of Godhead so that his mind, senses and words will all turn toward devotional activities only.
darsanam no didrksunam
rupam priyatamam svanam
darsanam--vision; nah--our; didrksunam--desirous to see; dehi--kindly exhibit; bhagavata--of the devotees; arcitam--as worshiped by them; rupam--form; priya-tamam--dearmost; svanam--of Your devotees; sarva-indriya--all the senses; guna--qualities; anjanam--very much pleasing.
My dear Lord, I wish to see You exactly in the form that Your very dear devotees worship. You have many other forms, but I wish to see Your form that is especially liked by the devotees. Please be merciful upon me and show me that form, for only that form worshiped by the devotees can perfectly satisfy all the demands of the senses.
In the sruti, or veda-mantra, it is said that the Supreme Absolute Truth is sarva-kamah sarva-gandhah sarva-rasah, or, in other words, He is known as raso vai sah, the source of all relishable relationships (rasas). We have various senses--the powers of seeing, tasting, smelling, touching, etc.--and all the propensities of our senses can be satisfied when the senses are engaged in the service of the Lord. Hrsikena hrsikesa-sevanam bhaktir ucyate: "Bhakti means engaging all the senses in the service of the master of the senses, Hrsikesa." (Narada-pancaratra) These material senses, however, cannot be engaged in the service of the Lord; therefore one has to become free from all designations. Sarvopadhi-vinirmuktam tatparatvena nirmalam. One has to become free from all designation or false egotism and thus become purified. come free from all designation or false egotism and thus become purified. When we engage our senses in the service of the Lord, the desires or the inclinations of the senses can be perfectly fulfilled. Lord Siva therefore wants to see the Lord in a form which is inconceivable to the Bauddha philosophers, or the Buddhists.
The impersonalists and the voidists also have to see the form of the Absolute. In Buddhist temples there are forms of Lord Buddha in meditation, but these are not worshiped like the forms of the Lord in Vaisnava temples (forms like Radha-Krsna, Sita-Rama or Laksmi-Narayana). Amongst the different sampradayas (Vaisnava sects) either Radha-Krsna or Laksmi-Narayana is worshiped. Lord Siva wants to see that form perfectly, just as the devotees want to see it. I he words rupam priyatamam svanam are specifically mentioned here, indicating that Lord Siva wants to see that form which is very dear to the devotees. The word svanam is especially significant because only the devotees are very, very dear to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The jnanis, yogis and karmis are not particularly dear, for the karmis simply want to see the Supreme Personality of Godhead as their order supplier. The jnanis want to see Him to become one with Him, and the yogis want to see Him partially represented within their heart as Paramatma, but the bhaktas, or the devotees, want to see Him in His complete perfection. As stated in Brahma-samhita (5.30):
venum kvanantam aravinda-dalayataksam
govindam adi-purusam tam aham bhajami
"I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, who is adept at playing on His flute, whose eyes are blooming like lotus petals, whose head is bedecked with peacock feathers, whose beauty is tinged with the hue of blue clouds, and whose unique loveliness charms millions of Cupids." Thus Lord Siva's desire is to see the Supreme Personality of Godhead as He is described in this way--that is, he wants to see Him as He appears to the bhagavatas, the devotees. The conclusion is that Lord Siva wants to see Him in complete perfection and not in the impersonalist or voidist way. Although the Lord is one in His various forms (advaitam acyutam anadim), still His form as the young enjoyer of the gopis and companion of the cowherd boys (kisora-murti) is the most perfect form. Thus Vaisnavas accept the form of the Lord in His Vrndavana pastimes as the chief form.
snigdha--glistening; pravrt--rainy season; ghana-syamam--densely cloudy; sarva--all; saundarya--beauty; sangraham--collection; caru--beautiful; ayata--bodily feature; catuh-bahu--unto the four-armed; su-jata--ultimately beautiful; rucira--very pleasing; ananam--face; padma-kosa--the whorl of the lotus flower; palasa--petals; aksam--eyes; sundara--beautiful; bhru--eyebrows; su-nasikam--raised nose; su-dvijam--beautiful teeth; su-kapola--beautiful forehead; asyam--face; sama-karna--equally beautiful ears; vibhusanam--fully decorated.
The Lord's beauty resembles a dark cloud during the rainy season. As the rainfall glistens, His bodily features also glisten. Indeed, He is the sum total of all beauty. The Lord has four arms and an exquisitely beautiful face with eyes like lotus petals, a beautiful highly raised nose, a mind-attracting smile, a beautiful forehead and equally beautiful and fully decorated ears.
After the scorching heat of the summer season, it is very pleasing to see dark clouds in the sky. As confirmed in Brahma-samhita: barhavatamsam asitambuda-sundarangam. The Lord wears a peacock feather in His hair, and His bodily complexion is just like a blackish cloud. The word sundara, or snigdha, means "very pleasing." Kandarpa-koti-kamaniya. Krsna's beauty is so pleasing that not even millions upon millions of Cupids can compare to it. The Lord's form as Visnu is decorated in all opulence; therefore Lord Siva is trying to see that most opulent form of Narayana, or Visnu. Generally the worship of the Lord begins with the worship of Narayana, or Visnu, whereas the worship of Lord Krsna and Radha is most confidential. Lord Narayana is worshipable by the pancaratrika-vidhi, or regulative principles, whereas Lord Krsna is worshipable by the bhagavata-vidhi. No one can worship the Lord in the bhagavata-vidhi without going through the regulations of the pancaratrika-vidhi. Actually, neophyte devotees worship the Lord according to the pancaratrika-vidhi, or the regulative principles enjoined in the Narada-pancaratra. Radha-Krsna cannot be approached by the neophyte devotees; therefore temple worship according to regulative principles is offered to Laksmi-Narayana. Although there may be a Radha-Krsna vigraha, or form, the worship of the neophyte devotees is acceptable as Laksmi-Narayana worship. Worship according to the pancaratrika-vidhi is called vidhi-marga, and worship according to the bhagavata-vidhi principles is called raga-marga. The principles of raga-marga are especially meant for devotees who are elevated to the Vrndavana platform.
The inhabitants of Vrndavana--the gopis, mother Yasoda, Nanda Maharaja, the cowherd boys, the cows and everyone else--are actually on the raga-marga or bhagavata-marga platform. They participate in five basic rasas--dasya, sakhya, vatsalya, madhurya and santa. But although these five rasas are found in the bhagavata-marga, the bhagavata-marga is especially meant for vatsalya and madhurya, or paternal and conjugal relationships. Yet there is the vipralambha-sakhya, the higher fraternal worship of the Lord especially enjoyed by the cowherd boys. Although there is friendship between Krsna and the cowherd boys, this friendship is different from the aisvarya friendship between Krsna and Arjuna. When Arjuna saw the visva-rupa, the gigantic universal form of the Lord, he was afraid for having treated Krsna as an ordinary friend; therefore he begged Krsna's pardon. However, the cowherd boys who are friends of Krsna in Vrndavana sometimes ride on the shoulders of Krsna. They treat Krsna equally, just as they treat one another, and they are never afraid of Him, nor do they ever beg His pardon. Thus the raga-marga, or bhagavata-marga, friendship exists on a higher platform with Krsna, namely the platform of vipralambha friendship. Paternal friendship, paternal service and conjugal service are visible in the Vrndavana raga-marga relationships.
Without serving Krsna according to the vidhi-marga regulative principles of the pancaratrika-vidhi, unscrupulous persons want to jump immediately to the raga-marga principles. Such persons are called sahajiya. There are also demons who enjoy depicting Krsna and His pastimes with the gopis, taking advantage of Krsna by their licentious character. These demons who print books and write lyrics on the raga-marga principles are surely on the way to hell. Unfortunately, they lead others down with them. Devotees in Krsna consciousness should be very careful to avoid such demons. One should strictly follow the vidhi-marga regulative principles in the worship of Laksmi-Narayana, although the Lord is present in the temple as Radha-Krsna. Radha-Krsna includes Laksmi-Narayana; therefore when one worships the Lord according to the regulative principles, the Lord accepts the service in the role of Laksmi-Narayana. In The Nectar of Devotion full instructions are given about the vidhi-marga worship of Radha-Krsna, or Laksmi-Narayana. Although there are sixty-four kinds of offenses one can commit in vidhi-marga worship, in raga-marga worship there is no consideration of such offenses because the devotees on that platform are very much elevated, and there is no question of offense. But if we do not follow the regulative principles on the vidhi-marga platform and keep our eyes trained to spot offenses, we will not make progress.
In his description of Krsna's beauty, Lord Siva uses the words carvayata-catur-bahu sujata-rucirananam, indicating the beautiful four-armed form of Narayana, or Visnu. Those who worship Lord Krsna describe Him as sujata-rucirananam. In the visnu-tattva there are hundreds and thousands and millions of forms of the Supreme Lord, but of all these forms, the form of Krsna is the most beautiful. Thus for those who worship Krsna, the word sujata-rucirananam is used.
The four arms of Lord Visnu have different purposes. The hands holding a lotus flower and conchshell are meant for the devotees, whereas the other two hands, holding a disc and mace, or club, are meant for the demons. Actually all of the Lord's arms are auspicious, whether they are holding conchshells and flowers or clubs and discs. The demons killed by Lord Visnu's cakra disc and club are elevated to the spiritual world, just like the devotees who are protected by the hands holding the lotus flower and conchshell. However, the demons who are elevated to the spiritual world are situated in the impersonal Brahman effulgence, whereas the devotees are allowed to enter into the Vaikuntha planets. Those who are devotees of Lord Krsna are immediately elevated to the Goloka Vrndavana planet.
The Lord's beauty is compared to rainfall because when the rain falls in the rainy season, it becomes more and more pleasing to the people. After the scorching heat of the summer season, the people enjoy the rainy season very much. Indeed, they even come out of their doors in the villages and enjoy the rainfall directly. Thus the Lord's bodily features are compared to the clouds of the rainy season. The devotees enjoy the Lord's beauty because it is a collection of all kinds of beauties. Therefore the word sarva-saundarya-sangraham is used. No one can say that the body of the Lord is wanting in beautiful parts. It is completely purnam. Everything is complete: God's creation, God's beauty and God's bodily features. All these are so complete that all one's desires can become fully satisfied when one sees the beauty of the Lord. The word sarva-saundarya indicates that there are different types of beauties in the material and spiritual worlds and that the Lord contains all of them. Both materialists and spiritualists can enjoy the beauty of the Lord. Because the Supreme Lord attracts everyone, including demons and devotees, materialists and spiritualists, He is called Krsna. Similarly, His devotees also attract everyone. As mentioned in the Sad-gosvami-stotra: dhiradhira-jana-priyau--the Gosvamis are equally dear to the dhira (devotees) and adhira (demons). Lord Krsna was not very pleasing to the demons when He was present in Vrndavana, but the six Gosvamis were pleasing to the demons when they were present in Vrndavana. That is the beauty of the Lord's dealings with His devotees; sometimes the Lord gives more credit to His devotees than He takes for Himself. For instance, on the Battlefield of Kuruksetra, Lord Krsna fought simply by giving directions. Yet it was Arjuna who took the credit for fighting. Nimitta-matram bhava savyasacin: "You, O Savyasaci [Arjuna], can be but an instrument in the fight." (Bg. 11.33) Everything was arranged by the Lord, but the credit of victory was given to Arjuna. Similarly, in the Krsna consciousness movement, everything is happening according to the predictions of Lord Caitanya, but the credit goes to Lord Caitanya's sincere servants. Thus the Lord is described herein as sarva-saundarya-sangraham.
priti--merciful; prahasita--smiling; apangam--sidelong glance; alakaih--with curling hair; rupa--beauty; sobhitam--increased; lasat--glittering; pankaja--of the lotus; kinjalka--saffron; dukulam--clothing; mrsta--glittering; kundalam--earrings; sphurat--shiny; kirita--helmet; valaya--bangles; hara--necklace; nupura--ankle bells; mekhalam--belt; sankha--conchshell; cakra--wheel; gada--club; padma--lotus flower; mala--garland; mani--pearls; uttama--first class; rddhi-mat--still more beautified on account of this.
The Lord is superexcellently beautiful on account of His open and merciful smile and Mis sidelong glance upon His devotees. His black hair is curly, and His garments, waving in the wind, appear like flying saffron pollen from lotus flowers. His glittering earrings, shining helmet, bangles, garland, ankle bells, waist belt and various other bodily ornaments combine with conchshell, disc, club and lotus flower to increase the natural beauty of the Kaustubha pearl on His chest.
The word prahasitapanga, referring to Krsna's smile and sidelong glances at His devotees, specifically applies to His dealings with the gopis. Krsna is always in a joking mood when He increases the feelings of conjugal rasa in the hearts of the gopis. The conchshell, club, disc and lotus flower can be either held in His hands or seen on the palms of His hands. According to palmistry, the signs of a conchshell, club, lotus flower and disc mark the palms of great personalities and especially indicate the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
simha--a lion; skandha--shoulders; tvisah--the coils of hair; bibhrat--bearing; saubhaga--fortunate; griva--neck; kaustubham--the pearl of the name; sriya--beauty; anapayinya--never decreasing; ksipta--defeating; nikasa--the stone for testing gold; asma--stone; urasa--with the chest; ullasat--glittering.
The Lord has shoulders just like a lion's. Upon these shoulders are garlands, necklaces and epaulets, and all of these are always glittering. Besides these, there is the beauty of the Kaustubha-mani pearl, and on the dark chest of the Lord there are streaks named Srivatsa, which are signs of the goddess of fortune. The glittering of these streaks excels the beauty of the golden streaks on a gold-testing stone. Indeed, such beauty defeats a gold-testing stone.
The curling hair on the shoulders of a lion always appears very, very beautiful. Similarly, the shoulders of the Lord were just like a lion's, and the necklace and garlands, along with the Kaustubha pearl necklace, combined to excel the beauty of a lion. The chest of the Lord is streaked with Srivatsa lines, the sign of the goddess of fortune. Consequently the Lord's chest excels the beauty of a testing stone for gold. The black siliceous stone on which gold is rubbed to test its value always looks very beautiful, being streaked with gold lines. Yet the chest of the Lord excels even such a stone in its beauty.
pura--inhaling; recaka--exhaling; samvigna--agitated; vali--the wrinkles on the abdomen; valgu--beautiful; dala--like the banyan leaf; udaram--abdomen; pratisankramayat--coiling down; visvam--universe; nabhya--navel; avarta--screwing; gabhiraya--by deepness.
The Lord's abdomen is beautiful due to three ripples in the flesh. Being so round, His abdomen resembles the leaf of a banyan tree, and when He exhales and inhales, the movement of the ripples appears very, very beautiful. The coils within the navel of the Lord are so deep that it appears that the entire universe sprouted out of it and yet again wishes to go back.
The whole universe is born out of the lotus stem which sprouted from the navel of the Lord. Lord Brahma sat on the top of this lotus stem to create the whole universe. The navel of the Lord is so deep and coiling that it appears that the whole universe again wants to withdraw into the navel, being attracted by the Lord's beauty. The Lord's navel and the ripples on His belly always increase the beauty of His bodily features. The details of the bodily features of the Lord especially indicate the Personality of Godhead. Impersonalists cannot appreciate the beautiful body of the Lord, which is described in these prayers by Lord Siva. Although the impersonalists are always engaged in the worship of Lord Siva, they are unable to understand the prayers offered by Lord Siva to the bodily features of Lord Visnu. Lord Visnu is known as siva-virinci-nutam (Bhag. 11.5.33), for He is always worshiped by Lord Brahma and Lord Siva.
syama--blackish; sroni--lower part of the waist; adhi--extra; rocisnu--pleasing; dukula--garments; svarna--golden; mekhalam--belt; sama--symmetrical; caru--beautiful; anghri--lotus feet; jangha--calves; uru--thighs; nimna--lower; janu--knees; su-darsanam--very beautiful.
The lower part of the Lord's waist is dark and covered with yellow garments and a belt bedecked with golden embroidery work. His symmetrical lotus feet and the calves, thighs and joints of His legs are extraordinarily beautiful. Indeed, the Lord's entire body appears to be well built.
Lord Siva is one of the twelve great authorities mentioned in Srimad-Bhagavatam (6.3.20). These authorities are Svayambhu, Narada, Sambhu, Kumara, Kapila, Manu, Prahlada, Janaka, Bhisma, Bali, Vaiyasaki, or Sukadeva Gosvami, and Yamaraja. The impersonalists, who generally worship Lord Siva, should learn of the transcendental sac-cid-ananda-vigraha of the Lord. Here Lord Siva kindly describes the details of the Lord's bodily features. Thus the impersonalists' argument that the Lord has no form cannot be accepted under any circumstance.
nakha-dyubhir no 'ntar-agham vidhunvata
pradarsaya sviyam apasta-sadhvasam
padam guro marga-gurus tamo-jusam
pada--by the lotus feet; sarat--autumn; padma--lotus flower; palasa--petals; rocisa--very pleasing; nakha--nails; dyubhih--by the effulgence; nah--our; antah-agham--dirty things; vidhunvata--which can cleanse; pradarsaya--just show; sviyam--Your own; apasta--diminishing; sadhvasam--the trouble of the material world; padam--lotus feet; guro--O supreme spiritual master; marga--the path; guruh--spiritual master; tamah-jusam--of the persons suffering in ignorance.
My dear Lord, Your two lotus feet are so beautiful that they appear like two blossoming petals of the lotus flower which grows during the autumn season. Indeed, the nails of Your lotus feet emanate such a great effulgence that they immediately dissipate all the darkness in the heart of a conditioned soul. My dear Lord, kindly show me that form of Yours which always dissipates all kinds of darkness in the heart of a devotee. My dear Lord, You are the supreme spiritual master of everyone; therefore all conditioned souls covered with the darkness of ignorance can be enlightened by You as the spiritual master.
Lord Siva has thus described the bodily features of the Lord authoritatively. Now he wants to see the lotus feet of the Lord. When a devotee wants to see the transcendental form of the Lord, he begins his meditation on the Lord's body by first looking at the feet of the Lord. Srimad-Bhagavatam is considered to be the transcendental sound form of the Lord, and the twelve cantos are divided in accordance with the transcendental form of the Lord. The First and Second Cantos of Srimad-Bhagavatam are called the two lotus feet of the Lord. It is therefore suggested by Lord Siva that one should first try to see the lotus feet of the Lord. This also means that if one is serious about reading Srimad-Bhagavatam, he must begin by seriously studying the First and Second Cantos.
The beauty of the lotus feet of the Lord is compared to the petals of a lotus flower which grows in the autumn season. By nature's law, in autumn the dirty or muddy waters of rivers and lakes become very clean. At that time the lotus flowers growing in the lakes appear very bright and beautiful. The lotus flower itself is compared to the lotus feet of the Lord, and the petals are compared to the nails of the feet of the Lord. The nails of the feet of the Lord are very bright, as Brahma-samhita testifies. Ananda-cinmaya-sad-ujjvala-vigrahasya: every limb of the transcendental body of the Lord is made of ananda-cinmaya-sad-ujjvala. Thus every limb is eternally bright. As sunshine dissipates the darkness of this material world, the effulgence emanating from the body of the Lord immediately dries up the darkness in the heart of the conditioned soul. In other words, everyone serious about understanding the transcendental science and seeing the transcendental form of the Lord must first of all attempt to see the lotus feet of the Lord by studying the First and Second Cantos of Srimad-Bhagavatam. When one sees the lotus feet of the Lord, all kinds of doubts and fears within the heart are vanquished.
In Bhagavad-gita it is said that in order to make spiritual progress, one must become fearless. Abhayam sattva-samsuddhih (Bg. 16.1). Fearfulness is the result of material involvement. It is also said in Srimad-Bhagavatam (11.2.37), bhayam dvitiyabhinivesatah syat: fearfulness is a creation of the bodily conception of life. As long as one is absorbed in the thought that he is this material body, he is fearful, and as soon as one is freed from this material conception, he becomes brahma-bhuta, or self-realized, and immediately becomes fearless. Brahma-bhutah prasannatma (Bg. 18.54). Without being fearless, one cannot be joyful. The bhaktas, the devotees, are fearless and always joyful because they are constantly engaged in the service of the lotus feet of the Lord. It is also said:
By practicing bhagavad-bhakti-yoga, one becomes fearless and joyful. Unless one becomes fearless and joyful, he cannot understand the science of God. Bhagavat-tattva-vijnanam mukta-sangasya jayate. This verse refers to those who are completely liberated from the fearfulness of this material world. When one is so liberated, he can really understand the transcendental features of the form of the Lord. Lord Siva therefore advises everyone to practice bhagavad-bhakti-yoga. As will be clear in the following verses, by doing so one can become really liberated and enjoy spiritual bliss.
It is also stated:
caksur unmilitam yena
tasmai sri-gurave namah
The Lord is the supreme spiritual master, and the bona fide representative of the Supreme Lord is also a spiritual master. The Lord from within enlightens the devotees by the effulgence of the nails of His lotus feet, and His representative, the spiritual master, enlightens from without. Only by thinking of the lotus feet of the Lord and always taking the spiritual master's advice can one advance in spiritual life and understand Vedic knowledge.
yasya deve para bhaktir
yatha deve tatha gurau
tasyaite kathita hy arthah
Thus the Vedas (Svetasvatara Upanisad 6.23) enjoin that for one who has unflinching faith in the lotus feet of the Lord, as well as in the spiritual master, the real import of Vedic knowledge can be revealed.
etad rupam anudhyeyam
etat--this; rupam--form; anudhyeyam--must be meditated upon; atma--self; suddhim--purification; abhipsatam--of those who are desiring so; yat--that which; bhakti-yogah--the devotional service; abhaya-dah--factual fearlessness; sva-dharmam--one's own occupational duties; anutisthatam--executing.
My dear Lord, those who desire to purify their existence must always engage in meditation upon Your lotus feet, as described above. Those who are serious about executing their occupational duties and who want freedom from fear must take to this process of bhakti-yoga.
It is said that the transcendental name, form, pastimes and entourage of the Lord cannot be appreciated by the blunt material senses; therefore one has to engage himself in devotional service so that the senses may be purified and one can see the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Here, however, it is indicated that those who are constantly engaged in meditating on the lotus feet of the Lord are certainly purified of the material contamination of the senses and are thus able to see the Supreme Lord face to face. The word "meditation" is very popular in this age amongst the common people, but they do not know the actual meaning of meditation. However, from Vedic literature we learn that the yogis are always absorbed in meditation upon the lotus feet of the Lord. Dhyanavasthita-tad-gatena manasa pasyanti yam yoginah (Bhag. 12.13.1). This is the real business of the yogis: to think of the lotus feet of the Lord. Lord Siva therefore advises that one who is actually serious about purification must engage himself in this type of meditation or in the mystic yoga system, which will help him not only to see the Lord within constantly but to see Him face to face and become His associate in Vaikunthaloka or Goloka Vrndavana.
The word sva-dharmam (as in sva-dharmam anutisthatam) indicates that the system of varnasrama--which indicates the occupational duties of the brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya and sudra and which is the perfect institution for humanity--must be supported by bhakti-yoga if one at all wants security in life. Generally people think that simply by executing the occupational duties of a brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya or sudra or the duty of a brahmacari, grhastha, vanaprastha or sannyasi one becomes fearless or securely attains liberation, but factually unless all these occupational duties are accompanied by bhakti-yoga, one cannot become fearless. In Bhagavad-gita there are descriptions of karma-yoga, jnana-yoga, bhakti-yoga, dhyana-yoga, etc., but unless one comes to the point of bhakti-yoga, these other yogas cannot help one attain the highest perfection of life. In other words, bhakti-yoga is the only means for liberation. We find this conclusion also in Caitanya-caritamrta in a discussion between Lord Caitanya and Ramananda Raya regarding a human being's liberation from this material world. In that discussion Ramananda Raya referred to the execution of varnasrama-dharma, and Lord Caitanya indicated that the varnasrama-dharma was simply external (eho bahya). Lord Caitanya wanted to impress upon Ramananda Raya that simply by executing the duties of varnasrama-dharma one is not guaranteed liberation. Finally Ramananda Raya referred to the process of bhakti-yoga: sthane sthitah sruti-gatam tanu-van-manobhih (Bhag. 10.14.3). Regardless of one's condition of life, if he practices bhakti-yoga, which begins with hearing (sruti-gatam) the transcendental messages of the Lord through the mouths of devotees, he gradually conquers the unconquerable God.
God is known to be unconquerable, but one who submissively hears the words of a self-realized soul conquers the unconquerable. The conclusion is that if one is serious about liberation, he not only should execute the occupational duties of varnasrama-dharma but should also engage in bhakti-yoga by beginning hearing from a realized soul. This process will help the devotee conquer the unconquerable Supreme Personality of Godhead and become His associate after giving up the material body.
bhavan bhaktimata labhyo
bhavan--Your Grace; bhakti-mata--by the devotee; labhyah--obtainable; durlabhah--very difficult to be obtained; sarva-dehinam--of all other living entities; svarajyasya--of the King of heaven; api--even; abhimatah--the ultimate goal; ekantena--by oneness; atma-vit--of the self-realized; gatih--the ultimate destination.
My dear Lord, the king in charge of the heavenly kingdom is also desirous of obtaining the ultimate goal of life--devotional service. Similarly, You are the ultimate destination of those who identify themselves with You [aham brahmasmi]. However, it is very difficult for them to attain You, whereas a devotee can very easily attain Your Lordship.
As stated in Brahma-samhita: vedesu durlabham adurlabham atma-bhaktau. This indicates that it is very difficult for one to attain the ultimate goal of life and reach the supreme destination, Vaikunthaloka or Goloka Vrndavana, simply by studying Vedanta philosophy or Vedic literature. However, this highest perfectional stage can be attained by the devotees very easily. That is the meaning of vedesu durlabham adurlabham atma-bhaktau. The same point is confirmed by Lord Siva in this verse. The Lord is very difficult for the karma-yogis, jnana-yogis and dhyana-yogis to attain. Those who are bhakti-yogis, however, have no difficulty at all. In the word svarajyasya, svar refers to Svargaloka, the heavenly planet, and svarajya refers to the ruler of the heavenly planet, Indra. Generally, karmis desire elevation to heavenly planets, but King Indra desires to become perfect in bhakti-yoga. Those who identify themselves as aham brahmasmi ("I am the Supreme Brahman, one with the Absolute Truth") also ultimately desire to attain perfect liberation in the Vaikuntha planets or Goloka Vrndavana. In Bhagavad-gita (18.55) it is said:
bhaktya mam abhijanati
yavan yas casmi tattvatah
tato mam tattvato jnatva
"One can understand the Supreme Personality as He is only by devotional service. And when one is in full consciousness of the Supreme Lord by such devotion, he can enter into the kingdom of God."
Thus if one desires to enter into the spiritual world, he must try to understand the Supreme Personality of Godhead by practicing bhakti-yoga. Simply by practicing bhakti-yoga one can understand the Supreme Lord in truth, but without such understanding, one cannot enter the spiritual kingdom. One may be elevated to the heavenly planets or may realize himself as Brahman (aham brahmasmi), but that is not the end of realization. One must realize the position of the Supreme Personality of Godhead by bhakti-yoga; then real perfection of life is attained.
tam duraradhyam aradhya
satam api durapaya
ekanta-bhaktya ko vanchet
pada-mulam vina bahih
tam--unto You; duraradhyam--very difficult to worship; aradhya--having worshiped; satam api--even for the most exalted persons; durapaya--very difficult to attain; ekanta--pure; bhaktya--by devotional service; kah--who is that man; vanchet--should desire; pada-mulam--lotus feet; vina--without; bahih--outsiders.
My dear Lord, pure devotional service is even difficult for liberated persons to discharge, but devotional service alone can satisfy You. Who will take to other processes of self-realization if he is actually serious about the perfection of life?
The word satam refers to transcendentalists. There are three kinds of transcendentalists: the jnani, yogi and bhakta. Out of these three, the bhakta is selected as the most suitable candidate to approach the Supreme Personality of Godhead. It is emphasized herein that only one who is outside devotional service would not engage in searching for the lotus feet of the Lord. Foolish people sometimes maintain that God may be attained in any way--either by karma-yoga, jnana-yoga, dhyana-yoga, etc.--but here it is clearly stated that it is impossible to obtain the mercy of the Lord by any means but bhakti-yoga. The word duraradhya is especially significant. It is very difficult to attain the lotus feet of the Lord by any method other than bhakti-yoga.
yatra nirvistam aranam
visvam vidhvamsayan virya-
yatra--wherein; nirvistam aranam--a completely surrendered soul; krta-antah--invincible time; na abhimanyate--does not go to attack; visvam--the entire universe; vidhvamsayan--by vanquishing; virya--prowess; saurya--influence; visphurjita--simply by expansion; bhruva--of the eyebrows.
Simply by expansion of His eyebrows, invincible time personified can immediately vanquish the entire universe. However, formidable time does not approach the devotee who has taken complete shelter at Your lotus feet.
In Bhagavad-gita (10.34) it is said that the Lord in the shape and form of death destroys all a person's possessions. Mrtyuh sarva-haras caham: "I am all-devouring death." The Lord in the shape of death takes away everything that is created by the conditioned soul. Everything in this material world is subject to perish in due course of time. However, all the strength of time cannot hamper the activities of a devotee, for a devotee takes complete shelter under the lotus feet of the Lord. For this reason only is a devotee free from formidable time. All the activities of the karmis and jnanis, which have no touch of devotional service, are spoiled in due course of time. The material success of the karmis is destined to be destroyed; similarly, the impersonal realization attained by the jnanis is also destroyed in the course of time.
aruhya krcchrena param padam tatah
patanty adho 'nadrta-yusmad-anghrayah
To say nothing of the karmis, the jnanis undergo severe austerities to attain the impersonal brahmajyoti, but because they do not find the lotus feet of the Lord, they fall down again into this material existence. Unless one is fully situated in unalloyed devotional service, there is no guarantee of liberation, even if one is elevated to the heavenly planets or to the impersonal Brahman effulgence. A devotee's achievement, however, is never lost by the influence of time. Even if a devotee cannot completely execute devotional service, in his next life he begins from the point where he left off. Such an opportunity is not given to the karmis and jnanis, whose achievements are destroyed. The bhakta's achievement is never destroyed, for it goes on perpetually, be it complete or incomplete. This is the verdict of all Vedic literatures. Sucinam srimatam gehe yoga-bhrasto'bhijayate. If one is unable to complete the process of bhakti-yoga, he is given a chance in his next life to take birth in a pure family of devotees or in a rich family. In such families a person can have a good opportunity to further progress in devotional service.
When Yamaraja, the superintendent of death, was instructing his assistants, he told them not to approach the devotees. "The devotees should be offered respect," he said, "but do not go near them." Thus the devotees of the Lord are not under the jurisdiction of Yamaraja. Yamaraja is a representative of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and he controls the death of every living entity. Yet he has nothing to do with the devotees. Simply by blinking his eyes, time personified can destroy the entire cosmic manifestation, but he has nothing to do with the devotee. In other words, devotional service which is rendered by the devotee in this lifetime can never be destroyed by time. Such spiritual assets remain unchanged, being beyond the influence of time.
na svargam napunar-bhavam
martyanam kim utasisah
ksana-ardhena--by half a moment; api--even; tulaye--compare; na--never; svargam--heavenly planets; na--neither; apunah-bhavam--merging into the Supreme; bhagavat--the Supreme Personality of Godhead; sangi--associate; sangasya--one who takes advantage of associating; martyanam--of the conditioned soul; kim uta--what is there; asisah--blessings.
If one by chance associates with a devotee, even for a fraction of a moment, he no longer is subject to attraction by the results of karma or jnana. What interest then can he have in the benedictions of the demigods, who are subject to the laws of birth and death?
Out of three kinds of men--the karmis, jnanis and bhaktas--the bhakta is described herein as the most exalted. Srila Prabodhananda Sarasvati has sung: kaivalyam narakayate tridasa-pur akasa-puspayate (Caitanya-candramrta). The word kaivalya means to merge into the effulgence of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and the word tridasa-pur refers to the heavenly planets where the demigods live. Thus for a devotee, kaivalya-sukha, or merging into the existence of the Lord, is hellish because the bhakta considers it suicidal to lose his individuality and merge into the effulgence of Brahman. A bhakta always wants to retain his individuality in order to render service to the Lord. Indeed, he considers promotion to the upper planetary systems to be no better than a will-o'-the-wisp. Temporary, material happiness holds no value for a devotee. The devotee is in such an exalted position that he is not interested in the actions of karma or jnana. The resultant actions of karma and jnana are so insignificant to a devotee situated on the transcendental platform that he is not in the least interested in them. Bhakti-yoga is sufficient to give the bhakta all happiness. As stated in Srimad-Bhagavatam (1.2.6): yayatma suprasidati. One can be fully satisfied simply by devotional service, and that is the result of association with a devotee. Without being blessed by a pure devotee, no one can be fully satisfied, nor can anyone understand the transcendental position of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
athanaghanghres tava kirti-tirthayor
syat sangamo 'nugraha esa nas tava
atha--therefore; anagha-anghreh--of my Lord, whose lotus feet destroy all inauspiciousness; tava--Your; kirti--glorification; tirthayoh--the holy Ganges water; antah--within; bahih--and outside; snana--taking bath; vidhuta--washed; papmanam--contaminated state of mind; bhutesu--unto the ordinary living beings; anukrosa--benediction or mercy; su-sattva--completely in goodness; silinam--of those who possess such characteristics; syat--let there be; sangamah--association; anugrahah--mercy; esah--this; nah--unto us; tava--Your.
My dear Lord, Your lotus feet are the cause of all auspicious things and the destroyer of all the contamination of sin. I therefore beg Your Lordship to bless me by the association of Your devotees, who are completely purified by worshiping Your lotus feet and who are so merciful upon the conditioned souls. I think that Your real benediction will be to allow me to associate with such devotees.
The Ganges water is celebrated as being able to eradicate all kinds of sinful reactions. In other words, when a person takes his bath in the Ganges, he becomes freed from all life's contaminations. The Ganges water is celebrated in this way because it emanates from the lotus feet of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Similarly, those who are directly in touch with the lotus feet of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and who are absorbed in the chanting of His glories are freed from all material contamination. Such unalloyed devotees are able to show mercy to the common conditioned soul. Srila Vrndavana dasa Thakura has sung that the devotees of Lord Caitanya are so powerful that each one of them can deliver a universe. In other words, it is the business of devotees to preach the glories of the Lord and deliver all conditioned souls to the platform of suddha-sattva, pure goodness. Here the word su-sattva means suddha-sattva, the transcendental stage beyond material goodness. By his exemplary prayers, Lord Siva teaches us that our best course it to take shelter of Lord Visnu and His Vaisnava devotees.
na yasya cittam bahir-artha-vibhramam
tamo-guhayam ca visuddham avisat
munir vicaste nanu tatra te gatim
na--never; yasya--whose; cittam--heart; bahih--external; artha--interest; vibhramam--bewildered; tamah--darkness; guhayam--in the hole; ca--also; visuddham--purified; avisat--entered; yat--that; bhakti-yoga--devotional service; anugrhitam--being favored by; anjasa--happily; munih--the thoughtful; vicaste--sees; nanu--however; tatra--there; te--Your; gatim--activities.
The devotee whose heart has been completely cleansed by the process of devotional service and who is favored by Bhaktidevi does not become bewildered by the external energy, which is just like a dark well. Being completely cleansed of all material contamination in this way, a devotee is able to understand very happily Your name, fame, form, activities, etc.
As stated in Srimad-Bhagavatam (3.25.25):
satam prasangan mama virya-samvido
bhavanti hrt-karna-rasayanah kathah
taj-josanad asv apavarga-vartmani
sraddha ratir bhaktir anukramisyati
Simply by the association of pure devotees one can understand the transcendental name, fame, quality and activities of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu has repeatedly said:
'sadhu-sanga', 'sadhu-sanga'----sarva-sastre kaya
lava-matra sadhu-sange sarva-siddhi haya
(Cc. Madhya 22.54)
Simply by associating with a pure devotee, one becomes wonderfully advanced in Krsna consciousness. Sadhu-sanga, or association with a devotee, means always engaging in Krsna consciousness by chanting the Hare Krsna mantra and by acting for Krsna. Specifically, chanting the Hare Krsna mantra purifies one, and this chanting is therefore recommended by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Ceto-darpana-marjanam: by chanting the names of Krsna, the mirror of the heart is cleansed, and the devotee loses interest in everything external. When one is influenced by the external energy of the Lord, his heart is impure. When one's heart is not pure, he cannot see how things are related to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Idam hi visvam bhagavan ivetarah (Bhag. 1.5.20). He whose heart is purified can see that the whole cosmic manifestation is but the Supreme Personality of Godhead, but he whose heart is contaminated sees things differently. Therefore by sat-sanga, or association with devotees, one becomes perfectly pure in heart.
One who is pure in heart is never attracted by the external energy, which urges the individual soul to try to dominate material nature. The pure heart of a devotee is never disturbed when he executes devotional service in the form of hearing, chanting, remembering, etc. In all, there are nine processes one can follow in the execution of devotional service. In any case, a pure-hearted devotee is never disturbed. The bhakti-yoga process must be carried out by avoiding the ten offenses one can commit while chanting the maha-mantra and the sixty-four offenses one can commit while worshiping the Deity. When a devotee strictly follows the rules and regulations, Bhaktidevi becomes very much satisfied with him, and at that time he is never disturbed by anything external. A devotee is also called a muni. The word muni means "thoughtful." A devotee is as thoughtful as a nondevotee is speculative. The nondevotee's speculation is impure, but a devotee's thoughts are pure. Lord Kapila and Sukadeva Gosvami are also called muni, and Vyasadeva is addressed as Mahamuni. A devotee is addressed as muni, or thoughtful, when he purely understands the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The conclusion is that when one's heart is purified by the association of devotees and by the avoidance of the offenses committed when chanting and worshiping the Lord, the transcendental name, form and activities of the Lord are revealed by the Lord.
yatredam vyajyate visvam
visvasminn avabhati yat
tat tvam brahma param jyotir
akasam iva vistrtam
yatra--where; idam--this; vyajyate--manifested; visvam--the universe; visvasmin--in the cosmic manifestation; avabhati--is manifested; yat--that; tat--that; tvam--You; brahma--the impersonal Brahman; param--transcendental; jyotih--effulgence; akasam--sky; iva--like; vistrtam--spread.
My dear Lord, the impersonal Brahman spreads everywhere, like the sunshine or the sky. And that impersonal Brahman, which spreads throughout the universe and in which the entire universe is manifested, is You.
In Vedic literature it is said that everything is Brahman and nothing else. The whole cosmic manifestation rests on the Brahman effulgence. The impersonalists, however, cannot understand how such a huge cosmic manifestation can rest on a person. Thus this inconceivable power of the Supreme Personality of Godhead is not understood by the impersonalists; therefore they are puzzled and always denying that the Absolute Truth is a person. This wrong impression is cleared by Lord Siva himself, who says that the impersonal Brahman, which is spread all over the universe, is nothing but the Supreme Lord Himself. Here it is clearly said that the Lord is spread everywhere, just like the sunshine, by virtue of His Brahman feature. This example is very easy to understand. All the planetary systems are resting upon the sunshine, yet the sunshine and the source of sunshine are aloof from the planetary manifestations. Similarly, the sky or air is spread everywhere; air is within a pot, but it also touches filthy places and sanctified places alike. In any case, the sky is uncontaminated. The sunshine also touches filthy places and sanctified places, and both are actually produced by the sun, but in any case the sun is aloof from all filthy things. Similarly, the Lord exists everywhere. There are pious things and impious things, but in the sastras the pious things are described as the front of the Supreme Lord, whereas impious things are described as the back of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. In Bhagavad-gita (9.4) the Lord clearly says:
maya tatam idam sarvam
na caham tesv avasthitah
"By Me, in My unmanifested form, this entire universe is pervaded. All beings are in Me, but I am not in them."
This verse of Bhagavad-gita explains that the Lord is spread everywhere by virtue of His Brahman feature. Everything rests in Him, yet He is not there. The conclusion is that without bhakti-yoga, without rendering devotional service to the Lord, even an impersonalist cannot understand the brahma-tattva, the Brahman feature. In the Vedanta-sutra it is stated: athato brahma jijnasa. This means that Brahman, Paramatma or Parabrahman should be understood. In Srimad-Bhagavatam also the Absolute Truth is described as the one without a second, but He is realized in three features--impersonal Brahman, localized Paramatma and the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The Supreme Personality of Godhead is the ultimate issue, and in this verse Lord Siva confirms that ultimately the Absolute Truth is a person. He clearly says: tat tvam brahma param jyotir akasam iva vistrtam. Here is a common example: a successful businessman may have many factories and offices, and everything rests on his order. If someone says that the entire business rests on such-and-such a person, it does not mean that the person is bearing all the factories and offices on his head. Rather, it is understood that by his brain or his energetic expansion, the business is running without interruption. Similarly, it is the brain and energy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead that carry on the complete manifestation of the material and spiritual worlds. The philosophy of monism, explained here very clearly, adjusts itself to the fact that the supreme source of all energy is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krsna. This is described very clearly. It is also stated how the impersonal feature of Krsna can be understood:
raso 'ham apsu kaunteya
sabdah khe paurusam nrsu
"O son of Kunti [Arjuna], I am the taste of water, the light of the sun and moon, the syllable om in the Vedic mantras; I am the sound in ether and ability in man." (Bg. 7.8)
In this way Krsna can be understood as the mystic power in everything.
yo mayayedam puru-rupayasrjad
bibharti bhuyah ksapayaty avikriyah
yad-bheda-buddhih sad ivatma-duhsthaya
tvam atma-tantram bhagavan pratimahi
yah--one who; mayaya--by His energy; idam--this; puru--manifold; rupaya--manifestation; asrjat--created; bibharti--maintains; bhuyah--again; ksapayati--annihilates; avikriyah--without being altered; yat--that; bheda-buddhih--sense of differentiation; sat--eternal; iva--like; atma-duhsthaya--giving trouble to oneself; tvam--unto You; atma-tantram--fully self-independent; bhagavan--O Lord, Supreme Personality of Godhead; pratimahi--I can understand.
My dear Lord, You have manifold energies, and these energies are manifested in manifold forms. With such energies You have also created this cosmic manifestation, and although You maintain it as if it were permanent, You ultimately annihilate it. Although You are never disturbed by such changes and alterations, the living entities are disturbed by them, and therefore they find the cosmic manifestation to be different or separated from You. My Lord, You are always independent, and I can clearly see this fact.
It is clearly explained that Lord Krsna has multienergies, which can be grouped into three: namely the external energy, the internal energy and the marginal energy. There are also different cosmic manifestations--namely the spiritual world and the material world--as well as different types of living entities. Some living entities are conditioned, and others are eternally free. The eternally free living entities are called nitya-mukta, for they never come in contact with the material energy. However, some living entities are conditioned in this material world, and thus they think themselves separated from the Supreme Lord. Due to their contact with the material energy, their existence is always troublesome. Being always in distress, the conditioned soul considers the material energy to be very much disturbing. This fact is explained by a Vaisnava kavi, or poet:
krsna bhuli' sei jiva anadi-bahirmukha
ataeva maya tare deya samsara-duhkha
When the living entity forgets the Supreme Lord and wants to enjoy himself independently, imitating the Supreme Lord, he is captured by the false notion that he is the enjoyer and is separated from the Supreme Lord. This material energy is therefore very much troublesome to the spiritual energy, the living entity, but the material energy is never troublesome to the Supreme Lord. Indeed, for the Supreme Lord, both material and spiritual energy are the same. In this verse Lord Siva explains that the material energy is never troublesome to the Supreme Lord. The Supreme Lord is always independent, but because the living entities are not independent--due to their false idea of becoming independently happy--the material energy is troublesome. Consequently the material energy creates differentiation.
Because the Mayavadi philosophers cannot understand this, they want to be relieved from the material energy. However, because a Vaisnava philosopher is in full knowledge of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he finds no disturbance even in the material energy. This is because he knows how to utilize the material energy for the service of the Lord. In the government, the criminal department and civil department may appear different in the eyes of the citizens, but in the eyes of the government both departments are one and the same. The criminal department is troublesome for the criminal but not for the obedient citizen. Similarly, this material energy is troublesome for the conditioned soul, but it has nothing to do with the liberated souls who are engaged in the service of the Lord. Through the purusa-avatara Maha-Visnu, the Supreme Personality of Godhead created the whole cosmic manifestation. Simply by breathing out all the universes, the Lord creates and maintains the cosmic manifestation as Lord Visnu. Then as Sankarsana, He annihilates the cosmic manifestation. Yet despite the creation, maintenance and destruction of the cosmos, the Lord is not affected. The various activities of the Lord must be very disturbing to the tiny living entities, but since the Lord is supremely great, He is never affected. Lord Siva or any other pure devotee can see this clearly without being blinded by bheda-buddhi, or differentiation. For a devotee, the Lord is the supreme spirit soul. Since He is supremely powerful, His various powers are also spiritual. For a devotee, there is nothing material, for material existence only means forgetfulness of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
kriya-kalapair idam eva yoginah
sraddhanvitah sadhu yajanti siddhaye
vede ca tantre ca ta eva kovidah
kriya--activities; kalapaih--by processes; idam--this; eva--certainly; yoginah--transcendentalists; sraddha-anvitah--with faith and conviction; sadhu--properly; yajanti--worship; siddhaye--for perfection; bhuta--the material energy; indriya--senses; antah-karana--heart; upalaksitam--symptomized by; vede--in the Vedas; ca--also; tantre--in the corollaries of the Vedas; ca--also; te--Your Lordship; eva--certainly; kovidah--those who are experts.
My dear Lord, Your universal form consists of all five elements, the senses, mind, intelligence, false ego (which is material) and the Paramatma, Your partial expansion, who is the director of everything. Yogis other than the devotees--namely the karma-yogi and jnana-yogi--worship You by their respective actions in their respective positions. It is stated both in the Vedas and in the sastras that are corollaries of the Vedas, and indeed everywhere, that it is only You who are to be worshiped. That is the expert version of all the Vedas.
In a previous verse Lord Siva wanted to see the form of the Lord which the devotees are always interested in. There are other forms of the Lord manifest in the material world, including Brahma and other demigods, and these are worshiped by materialistic persons. In the Second Canto, Third Chapter, of Srimad-Bhagavatam, it is stated that those who desire material benefits are recommended to worship different types of demigods, and in conclusion the Bhagavatam recommends:
akamah sarva-kamo va
yajeta purusam param
The devotees, the jnanis, who are known as moksa-kama, and the karmis, who are known as sarva-kama, are all aspiring to worship the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Visnu. Even when one performs yajnas, as stated here (kriya-kalapaih), he should always remember that the demigods are but agents of the Supreme Lord. Actually the worshipful Lord is Visnu, Yajnesvara. Thus even when different demigods are worshiped in the Vedic and Tantric sacrifices, the actual goal of sacrifice is Lord Visnu. Therefore in Bhagavad-gita (9.23) it is said:
ye 'py anya-devata-bhakta
te 'pi mam eva kaunteya
"Whatever a man may sacrifice to other gods, O son of Kunti, is really meant for Me alone, but is offered without true understanding."
Thus the worshipers of various demigods also worship the Supreme Lord, but they do so against the regulative principles. The purpose of the regulative principles is to satisfy Lord Visnu. In the Visnu Purana (3.8.9) the very same thing is confirmed:
purusena parah puman
visnur aradhyate pantha
Here it is clearly mentioned that the karmi, jnani or yogi--in fact, everyone--worships Lord Visnu if he is actually expert in knowledge of the Vedas and Tantras. The word kovidah is very significant, for it indicates the devotees of the Lord. Only the devotees know perfectly that the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Visnu, is all-pervading. Within the material energy, He is represented by the five material elements as well as the mind, intelligence and ego. He is also represented by another energy--the living entities--and all these manifestations in the spiritual and material world combined are but representations of the different energies of the Lord. The conclusion is that the Lord is one and that He is expanded in everything. This is understood by the Vedic version: sarvam khalv idam brahma. One who knows this concentrates all his energy in worshiping Lord Visnu.
tvam eka adyah purusah supta-saktis
taya rajah-sattva-tamo vibhidyate
mahan aham kham marud agni-var-dharah
surarsayo bhuta-gana idam yatah
tvam--Your Lordship; ekah--one; adyah--the original; purusah--person; supta--dormant; saktih--energy; taya--by which; rajah--the passion energy; sattva--goodness; tamah--ignorance; vibhidyate--is diversified; mahan--the total material energy; aham--egotism; kham--the sky; marut--the air; agni--fire; vah--water; dharah--earth; sura-rsayah--the demigods and the great sages; bhuta-ganah--the living entities; idam--all this; yatah--from whom.
My dear Lord, You are the only Supreme Person, the cause of all causes. Before the creation of this material world, Your material energy remains in a dormant condition. When Your material energy is agitated, the three qualities--namely goodness, passion and ignorance--act, and as a result the total material energy--egotism, ether, air, fire, water, earth and all the various demigods and saintly persons--becomes manifest. Thus the material world is created.
If the whole creation is one--that is, nothing but the Supreme Lord, or Visnu--then why do the expert transcendentalists make such categories as are found in the above verse:? Why do learned and expert scholars distinguish between matter and spirit? In answer to these questions, Lord Siva says that spirit and matter are not creations of various philosophers, but are manifested by Lord Visnu, as described in this verse: tvam eka adyah purusah. Spiritual and material categories are made possible by the Supreme personality of Godhead, but actually there are no such distinctions for the living entities who are eternally engaged in the service of the Lord. There is only a material world for those who want to imitate the Lord and become enjoyers. Indeed, the material world is nothing but forgetfulness of the original Supreme Personality of Godhead, the creator of everything. The distinction between matter and spirit is created by the sleeping energy of the Lord when the Lord wants to give some facility to those living entities who want to imitate the Lord in His enjoyment. It is only for them that this material world is created by the dormant energy of the Lord. For instance, sometimes children want to imitate their mother and cook in the kitchen, and at such a time the mother supplies them with some toys so that the children can imitate her cooking. Similarly, when some of the living entities want to imitate the activities of the Lord, this material cosmic manifestation is created for them by the Lord. The material creation is therefore caused by the Lord through His material energy. It is by the glance of the Lord that the material energy is activated. At that time the three material qualities are set into motion, and the material energy is manifested first in the form of the mahat-tattva, then egotism, then ether, then air, fire, water and earth. After the creation, the living entities are impregnated in the cosmic manifestation, and they emerge as Lord Brahma and the seven great rsis, then as different demigods. From the demigods come human beings, animals, trees, birds, beasts and everything else. The original cause, however, is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, as verified herein--tvam eka adyah purusah. This is also confirmed in Brahma-samhita (5.1):
isvarah paramah krsnah
anadir adir govindah
Those who are covered by the material energy cannot understand that the origin of everything is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krsna. This is summarized in the Vedanta aphorism janmady asya yatah (Vedanta-sutra 1.1.2). Krsna also confirms this in Bhagavad-gita (10.8):
aham sarvasya prabhavo
mattah sarvam pravartate
iti matva bhajante mam
"I am the source of all spiritual and material worlds. Everything emanates from Me. The wise who know this perfectly engage in My devotional service and worship Me with all their hearts."
When Krsna says that He is the origin of everything (aham sarvasya prabhavah), He means that He is even the source of Lord Brahma, Lord Siva, the purusa-avataras, the material manifestation and all the living entities within the material world. Actually the word prabhava ("creation") only refers to this material world, for since the spiritual world is eternally existing, there is no question of creation. In the Catuh-sloki of Srimad-Bhagavatam, the Lord says, aham evasam evagre: "I was existing in the beginning before the creation." (Bhag. 2.9.33) In the Vedas it is also said, eko narayana asit: "Before the creation there was only Narayana." This is also confirmed by Sankaracarya. Narayanah paro 'vyaktat: "Narayana is transcendental to the creation." (Gita--bhasya) Since all the activities of Narayana are spiritual, when Narayana said, "Let there be creation," that creation was all-spiritual. The "material" only exists for those who have forgotten that Narayana is the original cause.
srstam sva-saktyedam anupravistas
catur-vidham puram atmamsakena
atho vidus tam purusam santam antar
bhunkte hrsikair madhu sara-gham yah
srstam--in the creation; sva-saktya--by Your own potency; idam--this cosmic manifestation; anupravistah--entering afterward; catuh-vidham--four kinds of; puram--bodies; atma-amsakena--by Your own part and parcel; atho--therefore; viduh--know; tam--him; purusam--the enjoyer; santam--existing; antah--within; bhunkte--enjoys; hrsikaih--by the senses; madhu--sweetness; sara-gham--honey; yah--one who.
My dear Lord, after creating by Your own potencies, You enter within the creation in four kinds of forms. Being within the hearts of the living entities, You know them and know how they are enjoying their senses. The so-called happiness of this material creation is exactly like the bees' enjoyment of honey after it has been collected in the honeycomb.
The material cosmic manifestation is an exhibition of the external energy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, but because dull matter cannot work independently, the Lord Himself enters within this material creation in the form of a partial expansion (Paramatma), and He enters also by His separated parts and parcels (the living entities). In other words, both the living entities and the Supreme Personality of Godhead enter into the material creation just to make it active. As stated in Bhagavad-gita (7.5):
apareyam itas tv anyam
prakrtim viddhi me param
yayedam dharyate jagat
"Besides this inferior nature, O mighty-armed Arjuna, there is a superior energy of Mine, which consists of all living entities who are struggling with the material nature and are sustaining the universe."
Since the material world cannot work independently, the living entities enter into the material manifestation in four different types of bodies. The word catur-vidham is significant in this verse. There are four types of living entities born within this material world. Some are born by way of an embryo (jarayu ja), by way of eggs (anda ja), perspiration (sveda ja) and, like the trees, by way of seeds (udbhijja). Regardless of how these living entities appear, they are all busy in the pursuit of sense enjoyment.
The materialistic scientists' contention that living entities other than human beings have no soul is nullified herein. Whether they are born through an embryo, eggs, perspiration or seeds, all living entities in the 8,400,000 species of life are parts and parcels of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and each therefore is an individual spiritual spark and soul. The Supreme Personality of Godhead also remains within the heart of the living entity, regardless of whether the living entity is a man, animal, tree, germ or microbe. The Lord resides in everyone's heart, and because all living entities who come to this material world do so in order to fulfill their desire for sense enjoyment, the Lord directs the living entities to enjoy their senses. Thus the Paramatma, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, knows everyone's desires. As stated in Bhagavad-gita (15.15):
sarvasya caham hrdi sannivisto
mattah smrtir jnanam apohanam ca
"I am seated in everyone's heart, and from Me come remembrance, knowledge and forgetfulness."
Remaining within the hearts of all living entities, the Lord bestows remembrance by which the living entities can enjoy certain things. Thus the living entities create their enjoyable honeycombs and then enjoy them. The example of the bees is appropriate because when bees try to enjoy their honeycomb, they have to suffer the bites of other bees. Because bees bite one another when they enjoy honey, they are not exclusively enjoying the sweetness of the honey, for there is also suffering. In other words, the living entities are subjected to the pains and pleasures of material enjoyment, whereas the Supreme Personality of Godhead, knowing their plans for sense enjoyment, is aloof from them. In the Upanisads the example is given of two birds sitting on a tree. One bird (the jiva, or living entity) is enjoying the fruits of that tree, and the other bird (Paramatma) is simply witnessing. In the Bhagavad-gita (13.23) the Supreme Personality of Godhead as Paramatma is described as upadrasta (the overseer) and anumanta (the permitter).
Thus the Lord simply witnesses and gives the living entity sanction for sense enjoyment. It is the Paramatma also who gives the intelligence by which the bees can construct a hive, collect honey from various flowers, store it and enjoy it. Although the Paramatma is aloof from the living entities, He knows their intentions, and He gives them facilities by which they can enjoy or suffer the results of their actions. Human society is exactly like a beehive, for everyone is engaged in collecting honey from various flowers, or collecting money from various sources, and creating large empires for common enjoyment. However, after these empires are created, the bites of other nations have to be suffered. Sometimes nations declare war upon one another, and the human beehives become sources of misery. Although human beings are creating their beehives in order to enjoy the sweetness of their senses, they are at the same time suffering from the bites of other persons or nations. The Supreme Personality of Godhead as Paramatma is simply witnessing all these activities. The conclusion is that both the Supreme Personality of Godhead and the jivas enter into this material world. However, the Paramatma, or Supreme Personality of Godhead, is worshipable because He has arranged for the happiness of the living entity in the material world. Because it is the material world, however, no one can enjoy any kind of happiness without inebriety. Material enjoyment means inebriety, whereas spiritual enjoyment means pure enjoyment under the protection of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
sa esa lokan aticanda-vego
vikarsasi tvam khalu kala-yanah
bhutani bhutair anumeya-tattvo
ghanavalir vayur ivavisahyah
sah--that; esah--this; lokan--all the planetary systems; ati--very much; canda-vegah--the great force; vikarsasi--destroys; tvam--Your Lordship; khalu--however; kala-yanah--in due course of time; bhutani--all living entities; bhutaih--by other living entities; anumeya-tattvah--the Absolute Truth can be guessed; ghana-avalih--the clouds; vayuh--air; iva--like; avisahyah--unbearable.
My dear Lord, Your absolute authority cannot be directly experienced, but one can guess by seeing the activities of the world that everything is being destroyed in due course of time. The force of time is very strong, and everything is being destroyed by something else--just as one animal is being eaten by another animal. Time scatters everything, exactly as the wind scatters clouds in the sky.
The process of destruction is going on according to the law of nature. Nothing within this material world can be permanent, although scientists, philosophers, workers and everyone else are trying to make things permanent. One foolish scientist recently declared that eventually life will be made permanent through science. Some so-called scientists are also trying to manufacture living entities within the laboratory. Thus in one way or another everyone is busy denying the existence of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and rejecting the supreme authority of the Lord. However, the Lord is so powerful that He destroys everything in the form of death. As Krsna says in Bhagavad-gita (10.34), mrtyuh sarva-haras caham: "I am all-devouring death." The Lord is just like death to the atheists, for He takes away everything they accumulate in the material world. Hiranyakasipu, the father of Prahlada, always denied the existence of the Lord, and he tried to kill his five-year-old boy due to the boy's unflinching faith in God. However, in due course of time the Lord appeared as Nrsimhadeva and killed Hiranyakasipu in the presence of his son. As stated in Srimad-Bhagavatam (1.13.47), this killing process is natural. Jivo jivasya jivanam: "one animal is food for another animal." A frog is eaten by a snake, a snake is eaten by a mongoose, and the mongoose is eaten by another animal. In this way the process of destruction goes on by the supreme will of the Lord. Although we do not see the hand of the Supreme Lord directly, we can feel the presence of that hand through the Lord's process of destruction. We can see the clouds scattered by the wind, although we cannot see how this is being done because it is not possible to see the wind. Similarly, although we do not directly see the Supreme Personality of Godhead, we can see that He controls the process of destruction. The destructive process is going on fiercely under the control of the Lord, but the atheists cannot see it.
pramattam uccair iti krtya-cintaya
pravrddha-lobham visayesu lalasam
tvam apramattah sahasabhipadyase
ksul-lelihano 'hir ivakhum antakah
pramattam--persons who are mad; uccaih--loudly; iti--thus; krtya--to be done; cintaya--by such desire; pravrddha--very much advanced; lobham--greed; visayesu--in material enjoyment; lalasam--so desiring; tvam--Your Lordship; apramattah--completely in transcendence; sahasa--all of a sudden; abhipadyase--seizes them; ksut--hungry; lelihanah--by the greedy tongue; ahih--snake; iva--like; akhum--mouse; antakah--destroyer.
My dear Lord, all living entities within this material world are mad after planning for things, and they are always busy with a desire to do this or that. This is due to uncontrollable greed. The greed for material enjoyment is always existing in the living entity, but Your Lordship is always alert, and in due course of time You strike him, just as a snake seizes a mouse and very easily swallows him.
Everyone is greedy, and everyone makes plans for material enjoyment. In his lust for material enjoyment, the living entity is described as a madman. As stated in Bhagavad-gita (3.27):
gunaih karmani sarvasah
kartaham iti manyate
"The bewildered spirit soul, under the influence of the three modes of material nature, thinks himself to be the doer of activities which are in actuality carried out by nature."
Everything is enacted by the laws of nature, and these laws are under the direction of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The atheists, or unintelligent men, do not know this. They are busy making their own plans, and big nations are busy expanding their empires. And yet we know that in due course of time many empires have come into existence and been destroyed. Many aristocratic families were created by people in their extreme madness, but we can see that in the course of time those families and empires have all been destroyed. But still the foolish atheists do not accept the supreme authority of the Lord. Such foolish people unnecessarily concoct their own duties without referring to the supreme authority of the Lord. The so-called political leaders are busy making plans to advance the material prosperity of their nation, but factually these political leaders only want an exalted position for themselves. Due to their greed for material position, they falsely present themselves as leaders before the people and collect their votes, although they are completely under the grip of the laws of material nature. These are some of the faults of modern civilization. Without taking to God consciousness and accepting the authority of the Lord, the living entities become ultimately confused and frustrated in their planmaking attempts. Due to their unauthorized plans for economic development, the price of commodities is rising daily all over the world, so much so that is has become difficult for the poorer classes, and they are suffering the consequences. And due to lack of Krsna consciousness, people are being fooled by so-called leaders and planmakers. Consequently, the sufferings of the people are increasing. According to the laws of nature, which are backed by the Lord, nothing can be permanent within this material world; therefore everyone should be allowed to take shelter of the Absolute in order to be saved. In this regard, Lord Krsna says in Bhagavad-gita (5.29):
jnatva mam santim rcchati
"The sages, knowing Me as the ultimate purpose of all sacrifices and austerities, the Supreme Lord of all planets and demigods and the benefactor and well-wisher of all living entities, attain peace from the pangs of material miseries."
If one wants peace of mind and tranquillity in society, he must accept the fact that the real enjoyer is the Supreme personality of Godhead. The Lord is the proprietor of everything all over the universe, and He is the supreme friend of all living entities as well. By understanding this, people can become happy and peaceful individually and collectively.
kas tvat-padabjam vijahati pandito
yas te 'vamana-vyayamana-ketanah
visankayasmad-gurur arcati sma yad
vinopapattim manavas caturdasa
kah--who; tvat--Your; pada-abjam--lotus feet; vijahati--avoids; panditah--learned; yah--who; te--unto You; avamana--deriding; vyayamana--decreasing; ketanah--this body; visankaya--without any doubt; asmat--our; guruh--spiritual master, father; arcati--worships; sma--in the past; yat--that; vina--without; upapattim--agitation; manavah--the Manus; catuh-dasa--fourteen.
My dear Lord, any learned person knows that unless he worships You, his entire life is spoiled. Knowing this, how could he give up worshiping Your lotus feet? Even our father and spiritual master, Lord Brahma, unhesitatingly worshiped You, and the fourteen Manus followed in his footsteps.
The word pandita means "a wise man." Who is actually a wise man? The wise man is described in Bhagavad-gita (7.19) in this way:
bahunam janmanam ante
jnanavan mam prapadyate
vasudevah sarvam iti
sa mahatma sudurlabhah
"After many births and deaths, he who is actually in knowledge surrenders unto Me, knowing Me to be the cause of all causes and all that is. Such a great soul is very rare."
Thus when the wise man actually becomes wise after many births and whimsical attempts at self-realization, he surrenders unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krsna. Such a mahatma, or learned person, knows that Krsna, Vasudeva, is everything (vasudevah sarvam iti). Learned persons always think that life is wasted unless they worship Lord Krsna or become His devotee. Srila Rupa Gosvami also says that when one becomes an advanced devotee, he understands that he should be reserved and perseverant (ksantih) and that he should engage in the service of the Lord and not waste time (avyartha-kalatvam). He should also be detached from all material attraction (viraktih), and he should not long for any material respect in return for his activities (mana-sunyata). He should be certain that Krsna will bestow His mercy upon him (asa-bandhah), and he should always be very eager to serve the Lord faithfully (samutkantha). The wise man is always very eager to glorify the Lord by chanting and hearing (nama-gane sada rucih), and he is always eager to describe the transcendental qualities of the Lord (asaktis tad-gunakhyane). He should also be attracted to those places where the Lord had His pastimes (pritis tad-vasati-sthale). These are symptoms of an advanced devotee.
An advanced devotee, or a perfect human being who is actually wise and learned, cannot give up his service at the lotus feet of the Lord. Although Lord Brahma has a long life-span (4,320,000,000 years constitute twelve hours in a day of Brahma), Brahma is afraid of death and consequently engages in the devotional service of the Lord. Similarly, all the Manus who appear and disappear during the day of Brahma are also engaged in the Lord's devotional service. In Brahma's one day, fourteen Manus appear and disappear. The first Manu is Svayambhuva Manu. Each Manu lives for seventy-one yugas, each consisting of some 4,320,000 years. Although the Manus have such a long life-span, they still prepare for the next life by engaging in the devotional service of the Lord. In this age human beings only live for sixty or eighty years, and even this small life-span is gradually decreasing. Therefore it is even more imperative for human beings to take to the worship of the lotus feet of the Lord by constantly chanting the Hare Krsna mantra, as recommended by Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu.
trnad api sunicena
taror iva sahisnuna
kirtaniyah sada harih
When one is engaged in devotional service, he is often surrounded by envious people, and often many enemies come to try to defeat him or stop him. This is not new in this present age, for even in the days of yore Prahlada Maharaja, who was engaged in the devotional service of the Lord, was harassed by his demoniac father, Hiranyakasipu. The atheists are always prepared to harass a devotee; therefore Caitanya Mahaprabhu suggested that one be very tolerant of these people. Nonetheless, one has to continue chanting the Hare Krsna mantra and preaching the chanting of this mantra because such preaching and chanting constitute the perfection of life. One should chant and preach about the urgency of making this life perfect in all respects. One should thus engage in the devotional service of the Lord and follow in the footsteps of previous acaryas, beginning with Lord Brahma and others.
atha tvam asi no brahman
atha--therefore; tvam--You, my Lord; asi--are; nah--our; brahman--O Supreme Brahman; parama-atman--O Supersoul; vipascitam--for the learned wise men; visvam--the whole universe; rudra-bhaya--being afraid of Rudra; dhvastam--annihilated; akutascit-bhaya--undoubtedly fearless; gatih--destination.
My dear Lord, all actually learned persons know You as the Supreme Brahman and the Supersoul. Although the entire universe is afraid of Lord Rudra, who ultimately annihilates everything, for the learned devotees You are the fearless destination of all.
For the purpose of creation, maintenance and annihilation of this cosmic manifestation, there are three lords--Brahma, Visnu and Siva (Mahesvara). The material body is finished at the time of annihilation. Both the universal body and the small unit, the individual living entity's body, are susceptible to annihilation at the ultimate end. However, the devotees do not fear the annihilation of the body, for they are confident that after the annihilation they will go back home, back to Godhead (tyaktva deham punar janma naiti mam eti so 'rjuna).
If one strictly follows the process of devotional service, he has no fear of death, for he is predestined to go back home, back to Godhead. The nondevotees are fearful of death because they have no guarantee of where they are going or of the type of body they are going to get in their next life. The word rudra-bhaya is significant in this verse because Rudra himself, Lord Siva, is speaking of "fear of Rudra." This indicates that there are many Rudras--eleven Rudras--and the Rudra (Lord Siva) who was offering this prayer to the Supreme Personality of Godhead is different from the other Rudras, although he is as powerful as they are. The conclusion is that one Rudra is afraid of another Rudra because each and every one of them is engaged in the destruction of this cosmic manifestation. But for the devotee, everyone is afraid of Rudra, even Rudra himself. A devotee is never afraid of Rudra because he is always secure, being protected by the lotus feet of the Lord. As Sri Krsna says in Bhagavad-gita (9.31), kaunteya pratijanihi na me bhaktah pranasyati: "My dear Arjuna, you may declare publicly that My pure devotee will not be vanquished under any circumstances."
idam japata bhadram vo
idam--this; japata--while chanting; bhadram--all auspiciousness; vah--all of you; visuddhah--purified; nrpa-nandanah--the sons of the King; sva-dharmam--one's occupational duties; anutisthantah--executing; bhagavati--unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead; arpita--given up; asayah--possessing all kinds of faithfulness.
My dear sons of the King, just execute your occupational duty as kings with a pure heart. Just chant this prayer fixing your mind on the lotus feet of the Lord. That will bring you all good fortune, for the Lord will be very much pleased with you.
The prayers offered by Lord Siva are very authoritative and significant. Simply by offering prayers to the Supreme Lord one can become perfect, even though engaged in his occupational duty. The real purpose of life is to become a devotee of the Lord. It does not matter where one is situated. Whether one is a brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya, sudra, American, Englishman, Indian, etc., one can execute devotional service anywhere and everywhere in the material existence simply by offering prayers unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The Hare Krsna maha-mantra is also a prayer, for a prayer addresses the Supreme Personality of Godhead by His name and invokes good fortune by petitioning the Lord to allow one to engage in His devotional service. The Hare Krsna maha-mantra also says, "My dear Lord Krsna, my dear Lord Rama, O energy of the Lord, Hare, kindly engage me in Your service." Although one may be situated in a lowly position, he can execute devotional service under any circumstance, as stated, ahaituky apratihata: "Devotional service cannot be checked by any material condition." (Bhag. 1.2.6) Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu also recommended this process:
jnane prayasam udapasya namanta eva
jivanti san-mukharitam bhavadiya-vartam
sthane sthitah sruti-gatam tanu-van-manobhir
ye prayaso 'jita jito 'py asi tais tri-lokyam
duty and still lend his ear to receive the message of the Lord from realized souls. The Krsna conscious movement is based on this principle, and we are opening centers all over the world to give everyone a chance to hear the message of Lord Krsna in order to go back home, back to Godhead.
tam evatmanam atma-stham
pujayadhvam grnantas ca
dhyayantas casakrd dharim
tam--unto Him; eva--certainly; atmanam--the Supreme Soul; atma-stham--within your hearts; sarva--all; bhutesu--in every living being; avasthitam--situated; pujayadhvam--just worship Him; grnantah ca--always chanting; dhyayantah ca--always meditating upon; asakrt--continuously; harim--the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
Therefore, O sons of the King, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Hari, is situated in everyone's heart. He is also within your hearts. Therefore chant the glories of the Lord and always meditate upon Him continuously.
The word asakrt is significant, for it means not just for a few minutes but continuously. That is the instruction given by Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu in His Siksastaka. Kirtaniyah sada harih: "The holy name of the Lord should be chanted twenty-four hours daily." Therefore in this Krsna consciousness movement we request the devotees to chant at least sixteen rounds on their beads daily. Actually one has to chant twenty-four hours daily, just like Thakura Haridasa, who was chanting the Hare Krsna mantra three hundred thousand times daily. Indeed, he had no other business. Some of the Gosvamis, like Raghunatha dasa Gosvami, were also chanting very rigidly and also offering obeisances very rigidly. As stated in Srinivasacarya's prayer to the six Gosvamis (Sad-gosvamy-astaka): sankhya-purvaka-nama-gana-natibhih kalavasani-krtau. The word sankhya-purvaka means "maintaining a numerical strength." Not only was Raghunatha dasa Gosvami chanting the holy name of the Lord, but he was also offering obeisances in the same prolific numbers.
Because the princes were ready to enter into some severe austerity in order to worship the Lord, Lord Siva advised them to constantly chant of and meditate upon the Supreme Personality of Godhead. It is significant that Lord Siva personally offered his prayers to the Supreme Personality of Godhead just as he was taught by his father, Lord Brahma. Similarly, he was also preaching to the princes according to the parampara system. One not only should practice the instructions received from the spiritual master but should also distribute this knowledge to one's disciples.
The words atmanam atma-stham sarva-bhutesv avasthitam are also significant. The Personality of Godhead is the origin of all living entities. Because the living entities are parts and parcels of the Lord, He is the father of all of them. One can search out the Supreme Lord very easily within one's heart, for He is situated in every living entity's heart. In this verse the process of worshiping the Lord is considered to be very easy and complete, for anyone can sit down anywhere and in any condition of life and simply chant the holy names of the Lord. By chanting and hearing, one automatically engages in meditation.
yoga-adesam--this instruction of bhakti-yoga; upasadya--constantly reading; dharayantah--and taking within the heart; muni-vratah--just take the vow of the great sages, the vow of silence; samahita--always fixed in the mind; dhiyah--with intelligence; sarve--all of you; etat--this; abhyasata--practice; adrtah--with great reverence.
My dear princes, in the form of a prayer I have delineated the yoga system of chanting the holy name. All of you should take this important stotra within your minds and promise to keep it in order to become great sages. By acting silently like a great sage and by giving attention and reverence, you should practice this method.
In the hatha-yoga system one has to practice bodily exercises, dhyana, dharana, asana, meditation, etc. One also has to sit in one place in a particular posture and concentrate his gaze on the tip of the nose. There are so many rules and regulations for the hatha-yoga system that it is practically impossible to perform it in this age. The alternative system of bhakti-yoga is very easy not only in this age but in others as well, for this yoga system was advocated long ago by Lord Siva when he advised the princes, the sons of Maharaja Pracinabarhisat. The bhakti-yoga system is not newly introduced, for even five thousand years ago Lord Krsna recommended this bhakti-yoga as the topmost yoga. As Krsna tells Arjuna in Bhagavad-gita (6.47):
yoginam api sarvesam
sraddhavan bhajate yo mam
sa me yuktatamo matah
"Of all yogis, he who always abides in Me with great faith, worshiping Me in transcendental loving service, is most intimately united with Me in yoga and is the highest of all."
The topmost yogi is he who constantly thinks of Krsna within himself and chants the glories of the Lord. In other words, this system of bhakti-yoga has been existing from time immemorial and is now continuing in this Krsna consciousness movement.
The word muni-vratah is significant in this regard because those who are interested in advancing in spiritual life must be silent. Silence means talking only of krsna-katha. This is the silence of Maharaja Ambarisa:
sa vai manah krsna-padaravindayor
"King Ambarisa always fixed his mind on the lotus feet of the Lord and talked of Him only." (Bhag. 9.4.19) We should also take this opportunity in life to become as good as a great saint simply by not talking unnecessarily with unwanted persons. We should either talk of Krsna or chant Hare Krsna undeviatingly. This is called muni-vrata. The intelligence must be very sharp (samahita-dhiyah) and should always be acting in Krsna consciousness. The words etad abhyasatadrtah indicate that if one takes these instructions from a spiritual master with great reverence (adrta) and practices them accordingly, he will find this bhakti-yoga process to be very, very easy.
idam aha purasmakam
idam--this; aha--said; pura--formerly; asmakam--unto us; bhagavan--the lord; visva-srk--the creators of the universe; patih--master; bhrgu-adinam--of the great sages headed by Bhrgu; atmajanam--of his sons; sisrksuh--desirous of creating; samsisrksatam--who are in charge of creation.
This prayer was first spoken to us by Lord Brahma, the master of all creators. The creators, headed by Bhrgu, were instructed in these prayers because they wanted to create.
Lord Brahma was created by Lord Visnu; then Lord Brahma created Lord Siva and other great sages, headed by Bhrgu Muni. These great sages included Bhrgu, Marici, Atreya, Vasistha and others. All these great sages were in charge of creating population. Since there were not very many living entities in the beginning, Visnu entrusted Brahma with the business of creation, and Brahma in his turn created many hundreds and thousands of demigods and great sages to continue with the creation. At the same time, Lord Brahma cautioned all his sons and disciples by reciting the prayers now recited by Lord Siva. The material creation means material engagement, but material engagements can be counteracted if we always remember our relationship with the Lord as that relationship is described in these prayers recited by Lord Siva. In this way we can remain constantly in touch with the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Thus despite our engagement in the creation, we cannot be deviated from the path of Krsna consciousness. The Krsna consciousness movement is especially meant for this purpose. In this material world everyone is engaged in some particular occupational duty which is prescribed in the varnasrama-dharma. Brahmanas, ksatriyas, vaisyas, sudras and everyone are engaged in their occupational duty, but if one remembers his first duty--keeping in constant contact with the Supreme Personality of Godhead--everything will be successful. If one simply executes the rules and regulations of the varnasrama-dharma in the role of a brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya or sudra and keeps busy and does not remember one's eternal relationship with the Lord, one's business and activities as well as occupational duties will simply be a waste of time. This is confirmed in the First Canto of Srimad-Bhagavatam (1.2.8):
dharmah svanusthitah pumsam
notpadayed yadi ratim
srama eva hi kevalam
The conclusion is that even if one is busy executing his occupational duty, his business in Krsna consciousness need not be hampered. He has simply to execute the devotional service of sravanam kirtanam--hearing, chanting and remembering. One need not abandon his occupational duty. As stated in Bhagavad-gita (18.46):
yatah pravrttir bhutanam
yena sarvam idam tatam
sva-karmana tam abhyarcya
siddhim vindati manavah
"By worship of the Lord--who is the source of all beings and who is all-pervading--man can, in the performance of his own duty, attain perfection."
Thus one can continue with his occupational duty, but if he worships the Supreme Personality of Godhead as Lord Siva herein prescribes, he attains his perfection of life. Svanusthitasya dharmasya samsiddhir hari-tosanam (Bhag. 1.2.13). We should continue executing our occupational duties, but if we try to satisfy the Supreme Personality of Godhead by our duties, then our lives will be perfected.
te vayam noditah sarve
sisrksmo vividhah prajah
te--by him; vayam--all of us; noditah--ordered; sarve--all; praja-sarge--at the time of creating population; praja-isvarah--the controllers of all living entities; anena--by this; dhvasta-tamasah--being freed from all kinds of ignorance; sisrksmah--we created; vividhah--various kinds of; prajah--living entities.
When all the Prajapatis were ordered to create by Lord Brahma, we chanted these prayers in praise of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and became completely free from all ignorance. Thus we were able to create different types of living entities.
In this verse we can understand that the various types of living entities were created simultaneously at the very beginning of the creation. The nonsensical Darwinian theory of evolution is not applicable here. It is not that intelligent human beings did not exist millions of years ago. On the contrary, it is understood that the most intelligent creature, Lord Brahma, was first created. Then Lord Brahma created other saintly sages like Marici, Bhrgu, Atreya, Vasistha and Lord Siva. They in their turn created different types of bodies according to karma. In Srimad-Bhagavatam Lord Kapiladeva told His mother that the living entity gets a particular type of body in accordance with his work and that this body is decided upon by higher authorities. The higher authorities, as appointed by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, are Lord Brahma and all other Prajapatis and Manus. Thus from the beginning of creation it can be seen that the first creature is the most intelligent. It is not that so-called modern intelligence has developed by the gradual process of evolution. As stated in Brahma-vaivarta purana, there is a gradual evolutionary process, but it is not the body that is evolving. All the bodily forms are already there. It is the spiritual entity, or spiritual spark within the body, that is being promoted by the laws of nature under the supervision of superior authority. We can understand from this verse that from the very beginning of creation different varieties of living entities were existing. It is not that some of them have become extinct. Everything is there; it is due to our lack of knowledge that we cannot see things in their proper perspective.
In this verse the word dhvasta-tamasah is very important, for without being free of ignorance one cannot control the creation of different types of living entities. As stated in Srimad-Bhagavatam (3.31.1), daiva-netrena--bodies are awarded under the supervision of superior powers. How can these superior powers control the evolutionary process of the living entity if they are not free from all imperfection? The followers of the Vedic instructions cannot accept the Darwinian theory of evolution, for it is marred by imperfect knowledge.
athedam nityada yukto
japann avahitah puman
acirac chreya apnoti
atha--thus; idam--this; nityada--regularly; yuktah--with great attention; japan--by murmuring; avahitah--fully attentive; puman--a person; acirat--without delay; sreyah--auspiciousness; apnoti--achieves; vasudeva-parayanah--one who is a devotee of Lord Krsna.
A devotee of Lord Krsna whose mind is always absorbed in Him, who with great attention and reverence chants this stotra [prayer], will achieve the greatest perfection of life without delay.
Perfection means becoming a devotee of Lord Krsna. As stated in the First Canto of Srimad-Bhagavatam (1.2.28): vasudeva-para veda vasudeva-para makhah. The ultimate goal of life is Vasudeva, or Krsna. Any devotee of Lord Krsna can attain all perfection, material gains and liberation simply by offering prayers to Him. There are many varieties of prayers to Lord Krsna chanted by great sages and great personalities such as Lord Brahma and Lord Siva. Lord Krsna is known as siva-virincinutam (Bhag. 11.5.33). Siva means Lord Siva, and virinci means Lord Brahma. Both of these demigods are engaged in offering prayers to Lord Vasudeva, Krsna. If we follow in the footsteps of such great personalities and become devotees of Lord Krsna, our lives will become successful. Unfortunately people do not know this secret. Na te viduh svartha-gatim hi visnum: "They do not know that the real interest and the highest perfection of life is to worship Lord Visnu [Krsna]." (Bhag. 7.5.31) It is impossible to become satisfied by trying to adjust the external energy. Without being a devotee of Lord Krsna, one can only be baffled and confused. To save living entities from such a calamity, Lord Krsna points out in Bhagavad-gita (7.19):
bahunam janmanam ante
jnanavan mam prapadyate
vasudevah sarvam iti
sa mahatma sudurlabhah
"After many, many births and deaths, a wise man surrenders unto Me, knowing very well that I, Vasudeva, am everything. Such a great soul is very rare."
We can achieve whatever benediction we want simply by becoming devotees of Vasudeva.
sreyasam iha sarvesam
jnanam nihsreyasam param
sukham tarati dusparam
sreyasam--of all benedictions; iha--in this world; sarvesam--of every person; jnanam--knowledge; nihsreyasam--the supreme benefit; param--transcendental; sukham--happiness; tarati--crosses over; dusparam--insurmountable; jnana--knowledge; nauh--boat; vyasana--danger; arnavam--the ocean.
In this material world there are different types of achievement, but of all of them the achievement of knowledge is considered to be the highest because one can cross the ocean of nescience only on the boat of knowledge. Otherwise the ocean is impassable.
Actually everyone is suffering within this material world due to ignorance. Every day we see that a person without knowledge commits some criminal act and is later arrested and punished, despite the fact that he actually may not have been conscious of his sinful activity. Such ignorance prevails throughout the world. People do not consider how they are risking their lives in an attempt to have illicit sex life, kill animals to satisfy their tongue, enjoy intoxication and gamble. It is very regrettable that the leaders of the world do not know of the effects of these sinful activities. They are instead taking things very easily and are succeeding in making the ocean of nescience wider and wider.
Opposed to such ignorance, full knowledge is the greatest achievement within this material world. We can practically see that one who has sufficient knowledge is saved from many dangerous pitfalls in life. As stated in Bhagavad-gita (7.19), bahunam janmanam ante jnanavan mam prapadyate: "When one actually becomes wise, he surrenders unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead." Vasudevah sarvam iti sa mahatma sudurlabhah: "Such a great soul is very rarely to be found."
This Krsna consciousness movement is determined to open wide the eyes of the so-called leaders, who are full of ignorance, and thus save them from the many pitfalls and dangerous conditions of life. The greatest danger is the danger of getting a body lower than that of a human being. It was with great difficulty that we attained this human form of life just to take advantage of this body and reestablish our relationship with the Supreme personality of Godhead, Govinda. Lord Siva advises, however, that those who take advantage of his prayers will very soon become devotees of Lord Vasudeva and thus will be able to cross the ocean of nescience and make life perfect.
ya imam sraddhaya yukto
harim aradhayaty asau
yah--anyone; imam--this; sraddhaya--with great faith; yuktah--devoutly attached; mat-gitam--the song composed by me or sung by me; bhagavat-stavam--a prayer offered to the Supreme Personality of Godhead; adhiyanah--by regular study; duraradhyam--very difficult to worship; harim--the Supreme personality of Godhead; aradhayati--he can, however, worship Him; asau--such a person.
Although rendering devotional service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead and worshiping Him are very difficult, if one vibrates or simply reads this stotra [prayer] composed and sung by me, he will very easily be able to invoke the mercy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
It is especially significant that Lord Siva is a pure devotee of Lord Vasudeva. Vaisnavanam yatha sambhuh: "Amongst all Vaisnavas, Lord Siva is the topmost." Consequently Lord Siva has a sampradaya, a Vaisnava disciplic succession, called the Rudra-sampradaya. At the present moment those who belong to the Visnusvami-sampradaya of Vaisnavas come from Rudra, Lord Siva. To become a devotee of Lord Krsna, Vasudeva, is very, very difficult. The word especially used in this connection is duraradhyam. The worship of the demigods is not very difficult, but becoming a devotee of Lord Vasudeva, Krsna, is not so easy. However, if one adheres to the principles and follows in the footsteps of the higher authorities, as advised by Lord Siva, one can easily become a devotee of Lord Vasudeva. This is also confirmed by Prahlada Maharaja. Devotional service cannot be practiced by a mental speculator. Devotional service is a special attainment which can be acquired only by a person who has surrendered unto a pure devotee. As confirmed by Prahlada Maharaja, mahiyasam pada-rajo-'bhisekam niskincananam na vrnita yavat: "Unless one accepts the dust of the lotus feet of a pure devotee, who is free from all material contamination, one cannot enter into the devotional service of the Lord." (Bhag. 7.5.32)
vindate puruso 'musmad
yad yad icchaty asatvaram
vindate--achieves; purusah--a devotee; amusmat--from the Personality of Godhead; yat yat--that which; icchati--desires; asatvaram--being fixed; mat-gita--sung by me; gitat--by the song; su-pritat--from the Lord, who is very pleased; sreyasam--of all benediction; eka--one; vallabhat--from the dearmost.
The Supreme Personality of Godhead is the dearmost objective of all auspicious benedictions. A human being who sings this song sung by me can please the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Such a devotee, being fixed in the Lord's devotional service, can acquire whatever he wants from the Supreme Lord.
As stated in Bhagavad-gita (6.22), yam labdhva caparam labham manyate nadhikam tatah: if one can attain the favor of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he has nothing to aspire for, nor does he desire any other gain. When Dhruva Maharaja became perfect by austerity and saw the Supreme Personality of Godhead face to face, he was offered any kind of benediction he wanted. However, Dhruva replied that he did not want anything, for he was perfectly satisfied with the benediction of seeing the Lord. Except for the service of the Supreme Lord, whatever we want is called illusion, maya. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu said: jivera 'svarupa' haya--krsnera 'nitya-dasa' (Cc. Madhya 20.108). Every living entity is an eternal servant of the Lord; therefore when one engages in the service of the Lord, he realizes the highest perfection of life. A faithful servant can fulfill any desire by the grace of the master, and one who engages in the transcendental loving service of the Lord has nothing to aspire for separately. All his desires are fulfilled simply by engaging constantly in the Lord's loving service. Lord Siva shows us that any devotee can be successful simply by chanting the prayers which he has recited.
idam yah kalya utthaya
srnuyac chravayen martyo
idam--this prayer; yah--a devotee who; kalye--early in the morning; utthaya--after getting up from bed; pranjalih--with folded hands; sraddhaya--with faith and devotion; anvitah--thus being absorbed; srnuyat--personally chants and hears; sravayet--and gets others to hear; martyah--such a human being; mucyate--becomes freed; karma-bandhanaih--from all kinds of actions resulting from fruitive activities.
A devotee who rises early in the morning and with folded hands chants these prayers sung by Lord Siva and gives facility to others to hear them certainly becomes free from all bondage to fruitive activities.
Mukti, or liberation, means becoming free from the results of fruitive activities. As stated in Srimad-Bhagavatam (2.10.6): muktir hitvanyatha-rupam. Mukti means giving up all other activities and being situated in one's constitutional position (svarupena vyavasthitih). In this conditional state, we are entangled by one fruitive activity after another. Karma-bandhana means "the bonds of fruitive activity." As long as one's mind is absorbed in fruitive activities, he has to manufacture plans for happiness. The bhakti-yoga process is different, for bhakti-yoga means acting according to the order of the supreme authority. When we act under the direction of supreme authority, we do not become entangled by fruitive results. For instance, Arjuna fought because the Supreme Personality of Godhead wanted him to; therefore he was not responsible for the outcome of the fighting. As far as devotional service is concerned, even hearing and chanting is as good as acting with our body, mind and senses. Actually, hearing and chanting are also activities of the senses. When the senses are utilized for one's own sense gratification, they entangle one in karma, but when they are used for the satisfaction of the Lord, they establish one in bhakti.
gitam mayedam naradeva-nandanah
parasya pumsah paramatmanah stavam
japanta ekagra-dhiyas tapo mahat
caradhvam ante tata apsyathepsitam
gitam--sung; maya--by me; idam--this; naradeva-nandanah--O sons of the King; parasya--of the Supreme; pumsah--Personality of Godhead; parama-atmanah--the Supersoul of everyone; stavam--prayer; japantah--chanting; eka-agra--perfect attention; dhiyah--intelligence; tapah--austerities; mahat--great; caradhvam--you practice; ante--at the end; tatah--thereafter; apsyatha--will achieve; ipsitam--the desired result.
My dear sons of the King, the prayers I have recited to you are meant for pleasing the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the Supersoul. I advise you to recite these prayers, which are as effective as great austerities. In this way, when you are mature, your life will be successful, and you will certainly achieve all your desired objectives without fail.
If we persistently engage in devotional service, certainly all our desires will be fulfilled in due course of time.
Thus end the Bhaktivedanta purports of the Fourth Canto, Twenty-fourth Chapter, of the Srimad-Bhagavatam, entitled "Chanting the Song Sung by Lord Siva."