Chapter Twenty-two

                  Bali Maharaja Surrenders His Life


   The summary of this Twenty-second Chapter is as follows. The Supreme Personality of Godhead was pleased by the behavior of Bali Maharaja. Thus the Lord placed him on the planet Sutala, and there, after bestowing benedictions upon him, the Lord agreed to become his doorman.

   Bali Maharaja was extremely truthful. Being unable to keep his promise, he was very much afraid, for he knew that one who has deviated from truthfulness is insignificant in the eyes of society. An exalted person can suffer the consequences of hellish life, but he is very much afraid of being defamed for deviation from the truth. Bali Maharaja agreed with great pleasure to accept the punishment awarded him by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. In Bali Maharaja's dynasty there were many asuras who because of their enmity toward Visnu had achieved a destination more exalted than that of many mystic yogis. Bali Maharaja specifically remembered the determination of Prahlada Maharaja in devotional service. Considering all these points, he decided to give his head in charity as the place for Visnu's third step. Bali Maharaja also considered how great personalities give up their family relationships and material possessions to satisfy the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Indeed, they sometimes even sacrifice their lives for the satisfaction of the Lord, just to become His personal servants. Accordingly, by following in the footsteps of previous acaryas and devotees, Bali Maharaja perceived himself successful.

   While Bali Maharaja, having been arrested by the ropes of Varuna, was offering prayers to the Lord, his grandfather Prahlada Maharaja appeared there and described how the Supreme Personality of Godhead had delivered Bali Maharaja by taking his possessions in a tricky way. While Prahlada Maharaja was present, Lord Brahma and Bali's wife, Vindhyavali, described the supremacy of the Supreme Lord. Since Bali Maharaja had given everything to the Lord, they prayed for his release. The Lord then described how a nondevotee's possession of wealth is a danger whereas a devotee's opulence is a benediction from the Lord. Then, being pleased with Bali Maharaja, the Supreme Lord offered His disc to protect Bali Maharaja and promised to remain with him.


                                TEXT 1




                            sri-suka uvaca

                         evam viprakrto rajan

                         balir bhagavatasurah

                      bhidyamano 'py abhinnatma

                        pratyahaviklavam vacah




   sri-sukah uvaca--Sri Sukadeva Gosvami said; evam--thus, as aforementioned; viprakrtah--having been put into difficulty; rajan--O King; balih--Maharaja Bali; bhagavata--by the Personality of Godhead Vamanadeva; asurah--the King of the asuras; bhidyamanah api--although situated in this uncomfortable position; abhinna-atma--without being disturbed in body or mind; pratyaha--replied; aviklavam--undisturbed; vacah--the following words.




   Sukadeva Gosvami said: O King, although the Supreme Personality of Godhead was superficially seen to have acted mischievously toward Bali Maharaja, Bali Maharaja was fixed in his determination. Considering himself not to have fulfilled his promise, he spoke as follows.


                                TEXT 2




                           sri-balir uvaca

                  yady uttamasloka bhavan mameritam

                   vaco vyalikam sura-varya manyate

                karomy rtam tan na bhavet pralambhanam

                  padam trtiyam kuru sirsni me nijam




   sri-balih uvaca--Bali Maharaja said; yadi--if; uttamasloka--O Supreme Lord; bhavan--Your good self; mama--my; iritam--promised; vacah--words; vyalikam--false; sura-varya--O greatest of all suras (demigods); manyate--You think so; karomi--I shall make it; rtam--truth; tat--that (promise); na--not; bhavet--will become; pralambhanam--cheating; padam--step; trtiyam--the third; kuru--just do it; sirsni--on the head; me--my; nijam--Your lotus feet.




   Bali Maharaja said: O best Personality of Godhead, most worshipable for all the demigods, if You think that my promise has become false, I shall certainly rectify matters to make it truthful. I cannot allow my promise to be false. Please, therefore, place Your third lotus footstep on my head.




   Bali Maharaja could understand the pretense of Lord Vamanadeva, who had taken the side of the demigods and come before him as a beggar. Although the Lord's purpose was to cheat him, Bali Maharaja took pleasure in understanding how the Lord will cheat His devotee to glorify the devotee's position. It is said that God is good, and this is a fact. Whether He cheats or rewards, He is always good. Bali Maharaja therefore addressed Him as Uttamasloka. "Your Lordship," he said, "You are always praised with the best of selected verses. On behalf of the demigods, You disguised Yourself to cheat me, saying that You wanted only three paces of land, but later You expanded Your body to such an extent that with two footsteps You covered the entire universe. Because You were working on behalf of Your devotees, You do not regard this as cheating. Never mind. I cannot be considered a devotee. Nonetheless, because although You are the husband of the goddess of fortune You have come to me to beg, I must satisfy You to the best of my ability. So please do not think that I wanted to cheat You; I must fulfill my promise. I still have my body. When I place my body for Your satisfaction, please put Your third step on my head." Since the Lord had covered the entire universe with two steps, one might ask how Bali Maharaja's head could be sufficient for His third step? Bali Maharaja, however, thought that the possessor of wealth must be greater than the possession. Therefore although the Lord had taken all his possessions, the head of Bali Maharaja, the possessor, would provide adequate place for the Lord's third step.


                                TEXT 3




                   bibhemi naham nirayat pada-cyuto

                 na pasa-bandhad vyasanad duratyayat

                naivartha-krcchrad bhavato vinigrahad

                   asadhu-vadad bhrsam udvije yatha




   bibhemi--I do fear; na--not; aham--I; nirayat--from a position in hell; pada-cyutah--nor do I fear being deprived of my position; na--nor; pasa-bandhat--from being arrested by the ropes of Varuna; vyasanat--nor from the distress; duratyayat--which was unbearable for me; na--nor; eva--certainly; artha-krcchrat--because of poverty, or scarcity of money; bhavatah--of Your Lordship; vinigrahat--from the punishment I am now suffering; asadhu-vadat--from defamation; bhrsam--very much; udvije--I become anxious; yatha--as.




   I do not fear being deprived of all my possessions, living in hellish life, being arrested for poverty by the ropes of Varuna or being punished by You as much as I fear defamation.




   Although Bali Maharaja fully surrendered to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he could not tolerate being defamed for cheating a brahmana-brahmacari, Being quite alert in regard to his reputation, he thought deeply about how to prevent being defamed. The Lord, therefore, gave him the good counsel to prevent defamation by offering his head. A Vaisnava does not fear any punishment. Narayana-parah sarve na kutascana bibhyati (Bhag. 6.17.28).


                                TEXT 4




                      pumsam slaghyatamam manye

                        dandam arhattamarpitam

                       yam na mata pita bhrata

                         suhrdas cadisanti hi




   pumsam--of men; slaghya-tamam--the most exalted; manye--I consider; dandam--punishment; arhattama-arpitam--given by You, the supreme worshipable Lord; yam--which; na--neither; mata--mother; pita--father; bhrata--brother; suhrdah--friends; ca--also; adisanti--offer; hi--indeed.




   Although a father, mother, brother or friend may sometimes punish one as a well-wisher, they never punish their subordinate like this. But because You are the most worshipable Lord, I regard the punishment You have given me as most exalted.




   Punishment meted out by the Supreme Personality of Godhead is accepted by the devotee as the greatest mercy.


                    tat te 'nukampam susamiksamano

                    bhunjana evatma-krtam vipakam

                 hrd-vag-vapurbhir vidadhan namas te

                  jiveta yo mukti-pade sa daya-bhak


   "One who seeks Your compassion and thus tolerates all kinds of adverse conditions due to the karma of his past deeds, who engages always in Your devotional service with his mind, words and body, and who always offers obeisances to You is certainly a bona fide candidate for liberation." (Bhag. 10.14.8) A devotee knows that so-called punishment by the Supreme Personality of Godhead is only His favor to correct His devotee and bring him to the right path. Therefore the punishment awarded by the Supreme Personality of Godhead cannot be compared to even the greatest benefit awarded by one's material father, mother, brother or friend.


                                TEXT 5




                       tvam nunam asuranam nah

                        paroksah paramo guruh

                       yo no 'neka-madandhanam

                       vibhramsam caksur adisat




   tvam--Your Lordship; nunam--indeed; asuranam--of the demons; nah--as we are; paroksah--indirect; paramah--the supreme; guruh--spiritual master; yah--Your Lordship; nah--of us; aneka--many; mada-andhanam--blinded by material opulences; vibhramsam--destroying our false prestige; caksuh--the eye of knowledge; adisat--gave.




   Since Your Lordship is indirectly the greatest well-wisher of us demons, You act for our best welfare by posing as if our enemy. Because demons like us always aspire for a position of false prestige, by chastising us You give us the eyes by which to see the right path.




   Bali Maharaja considered the Supreme Personality of Godhead a better friend to the demons than to the demigods. In the material world, the more one gets material possessions, the more he becomes blind to spiritual life. The demigods are devotees of the Lord for the sake of material possessions, but although the demons apparently do not have the Supreme Personality of Godhead on their side, He always acts as their well-wisher by depriving them of their positions of false prestige. By false prestige one is misguided, so the Supreme Lord takes away their position of false prestige as a special favor.


                              TEXTS 6-7




                        yasmin vairanubandhena

                        vyudhena vibudhetarah

                        bahavo lebhire siddhim

                        yam u haikanta-yoginah


                        tenaham nigrhito 'smi

                        bhavata bhuri-karmana

                      baddhas ca varunaih pasair

                        nativride na ca vyathe




   yasmin--unto You; vaira-anubandhena--by continuously treating as an enemy; vyudhena--firmly fixed by such intelligence; vibudha-itarah--the demons (those other than the demigods); bahavah--many of them; lebhire--achieved; siddhim--perfection; yam--which; u ha--it is well known; ekanta-yoginah--equal to the achievements of the greatly successful mystic yogis; tena--therefore; aham--I; nigrhitah asmi--although I am being punished; bhavata--by Your Lordship; bhuri-karmana--who can do many wonderful things; baddhah ca--I am arrested and bound; varunaih pasaih--by the ropes of Varuna; na ati-vride--I am not at all ashamed of this; na ca vyathe--nor am I suffering very much.




   Many demons who were continuously inimical toward You finally achieved the perfection of great mystic yogis. Your Lordship can perform one work to serve many purposes, and consequently, although You have punished me in many ways, I do not feel ashamed of having been arrested by the ropes of Varuna, nor do I feel aggrieved.




   Bali Maharaja appreciated the Lord's mercy not only upon him but upon many other demons. Because this mercy is liberally distributed, the Supreme Lord is called all-merciful. Bali Maharaja was indeed a fully surrendered devotee, but even some demons who were not at all devotees but merely enemies of the Lord attained the same exalted position achieved by many mystic yogis. Thus Bali Maharaja could understand that the Lord had some hidden purpose in punishing him. Consequently he was neither unhappy nor ashamed because of the awkward position in which he had been put by the Supreme Personality of Godhead.


                                TEXT 8




                    pitamaho me bhavadiya-sammatah

                    prahrada aviskrta-sadhu-vadah

                  bhavad-vipaksena vicitra-vaisasam

                  samprapitas tvam paramah sva-pitra




   pitamahah--grandfather; me--my; bhavadiya-sammatah--approved by the devotees of Your Lordship; prahradah--Prahlada Maharaja; aviskrta-sadhu-vadah--famous, being celebrated everywhere as a devotee; bhavat-vipaksena--simply going against You; vicitra-vaisasam--inventing different kinds of harassments; samprapitah--suffered; tvam--You; paramah--the supreme shelter; sva-pitra--by his own father.




   My grandfather Prahlada Maharaja is famous, being recognized by all Your devotees. Although harassed in many ways by his father, Hiranyakasipu, he still remained faithful, taking shelter at Your lotus feet.




   A pure devotee like Prahlada Maharaja, although harassed circumstantially in many ways, never gives up the shelter of the Supreme Personality of Godhead to take shelter of anyone else. A pure devotee never complains against the mercy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. A vivid example is Prahlada Maharaja. Examining the life of Prahlada Maharaja, we can see how severely he was harassed by his own father, Hiranyakasipu, yet he did not divert his attention from the Lord even to the smallest extent. Bali Maharaja, following in the footsteps of his grandfather Prahlada Maharaja, remained fixed in his devotion to the Lord, despite the Lord's having punished him.


                                TEXT 9




                   kim atmananena jahati yo 'ntatah

               kim riktha-haraih svajanakhya-dasyubhih

                   kim jayaya samsrti-hetu-bhutaya

                 martyasya gehaih kim ihayuso vyayah




   kim--what is the use; atmana anena--of this body; jahati--gives up; yah--which (body); antatah--at the end of life; kim--what is the use; riktha-haraih--the plunderers of wealth; svajana-akhya-dasyubhih--they who are actually plunderers but who pass by the name of relatives; kim--what is the use; jayaya--of a wife; samsrti-hetu-bhutaya--who is the source of increasing material conditions; martyasya--of a person sure to die; gehaih--of houses, family and community; kim--what is the use; iha--in which house; ayusah--of the duration of life; vyayah--simply wasting.




   What is the use of the material body, which automatically leaves its owner at the end of life? And what is the use of all one's family members, who are actually plunderers taking away money that is useful for the service of the Lord in spiritual opulence? What is the use of a wife? She is only the source of increasing material conditions. And what is the use of family, home, country and community? Attachment for them merely wastes the valuable energy of one's lifetime.




   The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krsna, advises, sama-dharman parityajya mam ekam saranam vraja: "Give up all other varieties of religion and just surrender unto Me." The common man does not appreciate such a statement by the Supreme Personality of Godhead because he thinks that during his lifetime his family, society, country, body and relatives are everything. Why should one give up any one of them and take shelter of the Supreme Personality of Godhead? But from the behavior of great personalities like Prahlada Maharaja and Bali Maharaja we understand that surrendering to the Lord is the right action for an intelligent person. Prahlada Maharaja took shelter of Visnu against the will of his father. Similarly, Bali Maharaja took shelter of Vamanadeva against the will of his spiritual master, Sukracarya, and all the leading demons. People may be surprised that devotees like Prahlada Maharaja and Bali Maharaja could seek shelter of the side of the enemy, giving up the natural affinity for family, hearth and home. In this connection, Bali Maharaja explains that the body, which is the center of all material activities, is also a foreign element. Even though we want to keep the body fit and helpful to our activities, the body cannot continue eternally. Although I am the soul, which is eternal, after using the body for some time I have to accept another body (tatha dehantara-praptih), according to the laws of nature, unless I render some service with the body for advancement in devotional service. One should not use the body for any other purpose. One must know that if he uses the body for any other purpose he is simply wasting time, for as soon as the time is ripe, the soul will automatically leave the body.

   We are very interested in society, friendship and love, but what are they? Those in the garb of friends and relatives merely plunder the hard-earned money of the bewildered soul. Everyone is affectionate toward his wife and is attached to her, but what is this wife? The wife is called stri, which means, "one who expands the material condition." If a person lives without a wife, his material conditions are less extensive. As soon as one marries and is connected with a wife, his material necessities increase.


                  pumsah striya mithuni-bhavam etam

                   tayor mitho hrdaya-granthim ahuh

                   ato grha-ksetra-sutapta-vittair

                    janasya moho 'yam aham mameti


   "The attraction between male and female is the basic principle of material existence. On the basis of this misconception, which ties together the hearts of the male and female, one becomes attracted to his body, home, property, children, relatives and wealth. In this way one increases life's illusions and thinks in terms of 'I and mine.' " (Bhag. 5.5.8) Human life is meant for self-realization, not for increasing unwanted things. Actually, a wife increases unwanted things. One's lifetime, one's home and everything one has, if not properly used in the service of the Lord, are all sources of material conditions of perpetual suffering under the threefold miseries (adhyatmika, adhibhautika and adhidaivika). Unfortunately, there is no institution in human society for education on this subject. People are kept in darkness about the goal of life, and thus there is a continuous struggle for existence. We speak of "survival of the fittest," but no one survives, for no one is free under material conditions.


                               TEXT 10




                  ittham sa niscitya pitamaho mahan

                  agadha-bodho bhavatah pada-padmam

                 dhruvam prapede hy akutobhayam janad

                  bhitah svapaksa-ksapanasya sattama




   ittham--because of this (as stated above); sah--he, Prahlada Maharaja; niscitya--definitely deciding on this point; pitamahah--my grandfather; mahan--the great devotee; agadha-bodhah--my grandfather, who received unlimited knowledge because of his devotional service; bhavatah--of Your Lordship; pada-padmam--the lotus feet; dhruvam--the infallible, eternal shelter; prapede--surrendered; hi--indeed; akutah-bhayam--completely free of fear; janat--from ordinary common people; bhitah--being afraid; svapaksa-ksapanasya--of Your Lordship, who kill the demons on our own side; sat-tama--O best of the best.




   My grandfather, the best of all men, who achieved unlimited knowledge and was worshipable for everyone, was afraid of the common men in this world. Being fully convinced of the substantiality afforded by shelter at Your lotus feet, He took shelter of Your lotus feet, against the will of his father and demoniac friends, who were killed by Your own self.


                               TEXT 11




                  athaham apy atma-ripos tavantikam

                 daivena nitah prasabham tyajita-srih

                   idam krtantantika-varti jivitam

                yayadhruvam stabdha-matir na budhyate




   atha--therefore; aham--I; api--also; atma-ripoh--who are the traditional enemy of the family; tava--of Your good self; antikam--the shelter; daivena--by providence; nitah--brought in; prasabham--by force; tyajita--bereft of; srih--all opulence; idam--this philosophy of life; krta-anta-antika-varti--always given the facility for death; jivitam--the duration of life; yaya--by such material opulence; adhruvam--as temporary; stabdha-matih--such an unintelligent person; na budhyate--cannot understand.




   Only by providence have I been forcibly brought under Your lotus feet and deprived of all my opulence. Because of the illusion created by temporary opulence, people in general, who live under material conditions, facing accidental death at every moment, do not understand that this life is temporary. Only by providence have I been saved from that condition.




   Bali Maharaja appreciated the actions of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, although all the members of the demoniac families except Prahlada Maharaja and Bali Maharaja considered Visnu their eternal traditional enemy. As described by Bali Maharaja, Lord Visnu was actually not the enemy of the family but the best friend of the family. The principle of this friendship has already been stated. Yasyaham anugrhnami harisye tad-dhanam sanaih: the Lord bestows special favor upon His devotee by taking away all his material opulences. Bali Maharaja appreciated this behavior by the Lord. Therefore he said, daivena nitah prasabham tyajita-srih: "It is to bring me to the right platform of eternal life that You have put me into these circumstances."

   Actually, everyone should fear the so-called society, friendship and love for which he works so hard all day and night. As indicated by Bali Maharaja by the words janad bhitah, every devotee in Krsna consciousness should always be afraid of the common man engaged in pursuing material prosperity. Such a person is described as pramatta, a madman chasing the will-o'-the-wisp. Such men do not know that after a hard struggle for life one must change his body, with no certainty of what kind of body he will receive next. Those who are completely established in Krsna conscious philosophy and who therefore understand the aim of life will never take to the activities of the materialistic dog race. But if a sincere devotee somehow does fall down, the Lord corrects him and saves him from gliding down to the darkest region of hellish life.


                    adanta-gobhir visatam tamisram

                    punah punas carvita-carvananam


   (Bhag. 7.5.30)


   The materialistic way of life is nothing but the repeated chewing of that which has already been chewed. Although there is no profit in such a life, people are enamored of it because of uncontrolled senses. Nunam pramattah kurute vikarma. Because of uncontrolled senses, people fully engage in sinful activities by which they get a body full of suffering. Bali Maharaja appreciated how the Lord had saved him from such a bewildered life of ignorance. He therefore said that his intelligence had been stunned. Stabdha-matir na budhyate. He could not understand how the Supreme Personality of Godhead favors His devotees by forcibly stopping their materialistic activities.


                               TEXT 12




                            sri-suka uvaca

                       tasyettham bhasamanasya

                       prahrado bhagavat-priyah

                         ajagama kuru-srestha

                        raka-patir ivotthitah




   sri-sukah uvaca--Sri Sukadeva Gosvami said; tasya--Bali Maharaja; ittham--in this way; bhasamanasya--while describing his fortunate position; prahradah--Maharaja Prahlada, his grandfather; bhagavat-priyah--the most favored devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead; ajagama--appeared there; kuru-srestha--O best of the Kurus, Maharaja Pariksit; raka-patih--the moon; iva--like; utthitah--having risen.




   Sukadeva Gosvami said: O best of the Kurus, while Bali Maharaja was describing his fortunate position in this way, the most dear devotee of the Lord, Prahlada Maharaja, appeared there, like the moon rising in the nighttime.


                               TEXT 13




                 tam indra-senah sva-pitamaham sriya

                     virajamanam nalinayateksanam

                 pramsum pisangambaram anjana-tvisam

                pralamba-bahum subhagarsabham aiksata




   tam--that Prahlada Maharaja; indra-senah--Bali Maharaja, who now possessed all the military force of Indra; sva-pitamaham--unto his grandfather; sriya--present with all beautiful features; virajamanam--standing there; nalina-ayata-iksanam--with eyes as broad as the petals of a lotus; pramsum--a very beautiful body; pisanga-ambaram--dressed in yellow garments; anjana-tvisam--with his body resembling black ointment for the eyes; pralamba-bahum--very long arms; subhaga-rsabham--the best of all auspicious persons; aiksata--he saw.




   Then Bali Maharaja saw his grandfather Prahlada Maharaja, the most fortunate personality, whose dark body resembled black ointment for the eyes. His tall, elegant figure was dressed in yellow garments, he had long arms, and his beautiful eyes were like the petals of a lotus. He was very dear and pleasing to everyone.


                               TEXT 14




                  tasmai balir varuna-pasa-yantritah

                    samarhanam nopajahara purvavat

                   nanama murdhnasru-vilola-locanah

                   sa-vrida-nicina-mukho babhuva ha




   tasmai--unto Prahlada Maharaja; balih--Bali Maharaja; varuna-pasa-yantritah--being bound by the ropes of Varuna; samarhanam--befitting respect; na--not; upajahara--offered; purva-vat--like before; nanama--he offered obeisances; murdhna--with the head; asru-vilola-locanah--eyes inundated with tears; sa-vrida--with shyness; nicina--downward; mukhah--face; babhuva ha--he so became.




   Being bound by the ropes of Varuna, Bali Maharaja could not offer befitting respect to Prahlada Maharaja as he had before. Rather, he simply offered respectful obeisances with his head, his eyes being inundated with tears and his face lowered in shame.




   Since Bali Maharaja had been arrested by Lord Vamanadeva, he was certainly to be considered an offender. Bali Maharaja seriously felt that he was an offender to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Certainly Prahlada Maharaja would not like this. Therefore Bali Maharaja was ashamed and hung his head.


                               TEXT 15




                  sa tatra hasinam udiksya sat-patim

                   harim sunandady-anugair upasitam

                    upetya bhumau sirasa maha-mana

                  nanama murdhna pulakasru-viklavah




   sah--Prahlada Maharaja; tatra--there; ha asinam--seated; udiksya--after seeing; sat-patim--the Supreme Personality of Godhead, master of the liberated souls; harim--Lord Hari; sunanda-adi-anugaih--by His followers, like Sunanda; upasitam--being worshiped; upetya--reaching nearby; bhumau--on the ground; sirasa--with his head (bowed down); maha-manah--the great devotee; nanama--offered obeisances; murdhna--with his head; pulaka-asru-viklavah--agitated by tears of jubilation.




   When the great personality Prahlada Maharaja saw that the Supreme Lord was sitting there, surrounded and worshiped by His intimate associates like Sunanda, he was overwhelmed with tears of jubilation. Approaching the Lord and falling to the ground, he offered obeisances to the Lord with his head.


                               TEXT 16




                          sri-prahrada uvaca

                tvayaiva dattam padam aindram urjitam

                  hrtam tad evadya tathaiva sobhanam

                  manye mahan asya krto hy anugraho

                 vibhramsito yac chriya atma-mohanat




   sri-prahradah uvaca--Prahlada Maharaja said; tvaya--by Your Lordship; eva--indeed; dattam--which had been given; padam--this position; aindram--of the King of heaven; urjitam--very, very great; hrtam--has been taken away; tat--that; eva--indeed; adya--today; tatha--as; eva--indeed; sobhanam--beautiful; manye--I consider; mahan--very great; asya--of him (Bali Maharaja); krtah--has been done by You; hi--indeed; anugrahah--mercy; vibhramsitah--being bereft of; yat--because; sriyah--from that opulence; atma-mohanat--which was covering the process of self-realization.




   Prahlada Maharaja said: My Lord, it is Your Lordship who gave this Bali the very great opulence of the post of heavenly king, and now, today, it is You who have taken it all away. I think You have acted with equal beauty in both ways. Because his exalted position as King of heaven was putting him in the darkness of ignorance, You have done him a very merciful favor by taking away all his opulence.




   As it is said, yasyaham anugrhnami harisye tad-dhanam sanaih (Bhag. 10.88.8). It is by the mercy of the Lord that one gets all material opulence, but if such material opulence causes one to become puffed up and forget the process of self-realization, the Lord certainly takes all the opulence away. The Lord bestows mercy upon His devotee by helping him find out his constitutional position. For that purpose, the Lord is always ready to help the devotee in every way. But material opulence is sometimes dangerous because it diverts one's attention to false prestige by giving one the impression that he is the owner and master of everything he surveys, although actually this is not the fact. To protect the devotee from such a misunderstanding, the Lord, showing special mercy, sometimes takes away his material possessions. Yasyaham anugrhnami harisye tad-dhanam sanaih.


                               TEXT 17




                   yaya hi vidvan api muhyate yatas

                  tat ko vicaste gatim atmano yatha

                  tasmai namas te jagad-isvaraya vai





   yaya--by which material opulence; hi--indeed; vidvan api--even a person fortunately advanced in education; muhyate--becomes bewildered; yatah--self-controlled; tat--that; kah--who; vicaste--can search for; gatim--the progress; atmanah--of the self; yatha--properly; tasmai--unto Him; namah--I offer my respectful obeisances; te--unto You; jagat-isvaraya--unto the Lord of the universe; vai--indeed; narayanaya--unto His Lordship Narayana; akhila-loka-saksine--who are the witness of all creation.




   Material opulence is so bewildering that it makes even a learned, self-controlled man forget to search for the goal of self-realization. But the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Narayana, the Lord of the universe, can see everything by His will. Therefore I offer my respectful obeisances unto Him.




   The words ko vicaste gatim atmano yatha indicate that when one is puffed up by the false prestige of possessing material opulence, he certainly neglects the goal of self-realization. This is the position of the modern world. Because of so-called scientific improvements in material opulence, people have entirely given up the path of self-realization. Practically no one is interested in God, one's relationship with God or how one should act. Modern men have altogether forgotten such questions because they are mad for material possessions. If this kind of civilization continues, the time will soon come when the Supreme Personality of Godhead will take away all the material opulences. Then people will come to their senses.


                               TEXT 18




                            sri-suka uvaca

                         tasyanusrnvato rajan

                        prahradasya krtanjaleh

                        hiranyagarbho bhagavan

                          uvaca madhusudanam




   sri-sukah uvaca--Sri Sukadeva Gosvami said; tasya--of Prahlada Maharaja; anusrnvatah--so that he could hear; rajan--O King Pariksit; prahradasya--of Prahlada Maharaja; krta-anjaleh--who was standing with folded hands; hiranyagarbhah--Lord Brahma; bhagavan--the most powerful; uvaca--said; madhusudanam--unto Madhusudana, the Personality of Godhead.




   Sukadeva Gosvami continued: O King Pariksit, Lord Brahma then began to speak to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, within the hearing of Prahlada Maharaja, who stood nearby with folded hands.


                               TEXT 19




                     baddham viksya patim sadhvi

                       tat-patni bhaya-vihvala

                       pranjalih pranatopendram

                       babhase 'van-mukhi nrpa




   baddham--arrested; viksya--seeing; patim--her husband; sadhvi--the chaste woman; tat-patni--Bali Maharaja's wife; bhaya-vihvala--being very disturbed by fear; pranjalih--with folded hands; pranata--having offered obeisances; upendram--unto Vamanadeva; babhase--addressed; avak-mukhi--with face downward; nrpa--O Maharaja Pariksit.




   But Bali Maharaja's chaste wife, afraid and aggrieved at seeing her husband arrested, immediately offered obeisances to Lord Vamanadeva [Upendra]. She folded her hands and spoke as follows.




   Although Lord Brahma was speaking, he had to stop for a while because Bali Maharaja's wife, Vindhyavali, who was very agitated and afraid, wanted to say something.


                               TEXT 20




                        sri-vindhyavalir uvaca

              kridartham atmana idam tri-jagat krtam te

              svamyam tu tatra kudhiyo 'para isa kuryuh

               kartuh prabhos tava kim asyata avahanti

               tyakta-hriyas tvad-avaropita-kartr-vadah




   sri-vindhyavalih uvaca--Vindhyavali, the wife of Bali Maharaja, said; krida-artham--for the sake of pastimes; atmanah--of Yourself; idam--this; tri-jagat--the three worlds (this universe); krtam--was created; te--by You; svamyam--proprietorship; tu--but; tatra--thereon; kudhiyah--foolish rascals; apare--others; isa--O my Lord; kuryuh--have established; kartuh--for the supreme creator; prabhoh--for the supreme maintainer; tava--for Your good self; kim--what; asyatah--for the supreme annihilator; avahanti--they can offer; tyakta-hriyah--shameless, without intelligence; tvat--by You; avaropita--falsely imposed because of a poor fund of knowledge; kartr-vadah--the proprietorship of such foolish agnostics.




   Srimati Vindhyavali said: O my Lord, You have created the entire universe for the enjoyment of Your personal pastimes, but foolish, unintelligent men have claimed proprietorship for material enjoyment. Certainly they are shameless agnostics. Falsely claiming proprietorship, they think they can give charity and enjoy. In such a condition, what good can they do for You, who are the independent creator, maintainer and annihilator of this universe?




   Bali Maharaja's wife, who was most intelligent, supported the arrest of her husband and accused him of having no intelligence because he had claimed proprietorship of the property of the Lord. Such a claim is a sign of demoniac life. Although the demigods, who are officials appointed by the Lord for management, are attached to materialistic enjoyment, they never claim to be proprietors of the universe, for they know that the actual proprietor of everything is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This is the qualification of the demigods. But the demons, instead of accepting the exclusive proprietorship of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, claim the property of the universe for themselves through demarcations of nationalism. "This part is mine, and that part is yours," they say. "This part I can give in charity, and this part I can keep for my enjoyment." These are all demoniac conceptions. This is described in Bhagavad-gita (16.13): idam adya maya labdham imam prapsye manoratham. "Thus far I have acquired so much money and land. Now I have to add more and more. In this way I shall be the greatest proprietor of everything. Who can compete with me?" These are all demoniac conceptions.

   Bali Maharaja's wife accused Bali Maharaja by saying that although the Supreme Personality of Godhead had arrested him, showing him extraordinary mercy, and although Bali Maharaja was offering his body to the Supreme Lord for the Lord's third step, he was still in the darkness of ignorance. Actually the body did not belong to him, but because of his long-standing demoniac mentality he could not understand this. He thought that since he had been defamed for his inability to fulfill his promise of charity, and since the body belonged to him, he would free himself from defamation by offering his body. Actually, however, the body does not belong to anyone but the Supreme Personality of Godhead, by whom the body is given. As stated in Bhagavad-gita (18.61):


                        isvarah sarva-bhutanam

                       hrd-dese 'rjuna tisthati

                       bhramayan sarva-bhutani

                         yantrarudhani mayaya


   The Lord is situated in the core of everyone's heart, and, according to the material desires of the living entity, the Lord offers a particular type of machine--the body--through the agency of the material energy. The body actually does not belong to the living entity; it belongs to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Under the circumstances, how could Bali Maharaja claim that the body belonged to him?

   Thus Vindhyavali, Bali Maharaja's intelligent wife, prayed that her husband be released, by the Lord's causeless mercy. Otherwise, Bali Maharaja was nothing but a shameless demon, specifically described as tyakta-hriyas tvad-avaropita-kartr-vadah, a foolish person claiming proprietorship over the property of the Supreme Person. In the present age, Kali-yuga, the number of such shameless men, who are agnostics disbelieving in the existence of God, has increased. Trying to defy the authority of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, so-called scientists, philosophers and politicians manufacture plans and schemes for the destruction of the world. They cannot do anything good for the world, and unfortunately, because of Kali-yuga, they have plunged the affairs of the world into mismanagement. Thus there is a great need for the Krsna consciousness movement for the benefit of innocent people who are being carried away by propaganda of such demons. If the present status quo is allowed to continue, people will certainly suffer more and more under the leadership of these demoniac agnostics.


                               TEXT 21





                        bhuta-bhavana bhutesa

                         deva-deva jaganmaya

                       muncainam hrta-sarvasvam

                        nayam arhati nigraham




   sri-brahma uvaca--Lord Brahma said; bhuta-bhavana--O Supreme Being, well-wisher of everyone, who can cause one to flourish; bhuta-isa--O master of everyone; deva-deva--O worshipable Deity of the demigods; jagat-maya--O all-pervading one; munca--please release; enam--this poor Bali Maharaja; hrta-sarvasvam--now bereft of everything; na--not; ayam--such a poor man; arhati--deserves; nigraham--punishment.




   Lord Brahma said: O well-wisher and master of all living entities, O worshipable Deity of all the demigods, O all-pervading Personality of Godhead, now this man has been sufficiently punished, for You have taken everything. Now You can release him. He does not deserve to be punished more.




   When Lord Brahma saw that Prahlada Maharaja and Vindhyavali had already approached the Lord to ask mercy for Bali Maharaja, he joined them and recommended Bali Maharaja's release on the grounds of worldly calculations.


                               TEXT 22




                      krtsna te 'nena datta bhur

                       lokah karmarjitas ca ye

                        niveditam ca sarvasvam

                         atmaviklavaya dhiya




   krtsnah--all; te--unto You; anena--by Bali Maharaja; dattah--have been given or returned; bhuh lokah--all land and all planets; karma-arjitah ca--whatever he achieved by his pious activities; ye--all of which; niveditam ca--have been offered to You; sarvasvam--everything he possessed; atma--even his body; aviklavaya--without hesitation; dhiya--by such intelligence.




   Bali Maharaja had already offered everything to Your Lordship. Without hesitation, he has offered his land, the planets and whatever else he earned by his pious activities, including even his own body.


                               TEXT 23




               yat-padayor asatha-dhih salilam pradaya

               durvankurair api vidhaya satim saparyam

               apy uttamam gatim asau bhajate tri-lokim

              dasvan aviklava-manah katham artim rcchet




   yat-padayoh--at the lotus feet of Your Lordship; asatha-dhih--a great-minded person who is without duplicity; salilam--water; pradaya--offering; durva--with fully grown grass; ankuraih--and with buds of flowers; api--although; vidhaya--offering; satim--most exalted; saparyam--with worship; api--although; uttamam--the most highly elevated; gatim--destination; asau--such a worshiper; bhajate--deserves; tri-lokim--the three worlds; dasvan--giving to You; aviklava-manah--without mental duplicity; katham--how; artim--the distressed condition of being arrested; rcchet--he deserves.




   By offering even water, newly grown grass, or flower buds at Your lotus feet, those who maintain no mental duplicity can achieve the most exalted position within the spiritual world. This Bali Maharaja, without duplicity, has now offered everything in the three worlds. How then can he deserve to suffer from arrest?




   In Bhagavad-gita (9.26) it is stated:


                      patram puspam phalam toyam

                      yo me bhaktya prayacchati

                       tad aham bhakty-upahrtam

                         asnami prayatatmanah


   The Supreme Personality of Godhead is so kind that if an unsophisticated person, with devotion and without duplicity, offers at the lotus feet of the Lord a little water, a flower, a fruit or a leaf, the Lord accepts it. Then the devotee is promoted to Vaikuntha, the spiritual world. Brahma drew the Lord's attention to this subject and requested that He release Bali Maharaja, who was suffering, being bound by the ropes of Varuna, and who had already given everything, including the three worlds and whatever he possessed.


                               TEXT 24




                          sri-bhagavan uvaca

                        brahman yam anugrhnami

                       tad-viso vidhunomy aham

                      yan-madah purusah stabdho

                        lokam mam cavamanyate




   sri-bhagavan uvaca--the Supreme Personality of Godhead said; brahman--O Lord Brahma; yam--unto anyone to whom; anugrhnami--I show My mercy; tat--his; visah--material opulence or riches; vidhunomi--take away; aham--I; yat-madah--having false prestige due to this money; purusah--such a person; stabdhah--being dull-minded; lokam--the three worlds; mam ca--unto Me also; avamanyate--derides.




   The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: My dear Lord Brahma, because of material opulence a foolish person becomes dull-witted and mad. Thus he has no respect for anyone within the three worlds and defies even My authority. To such a person I show special favor by first taking away all his possessions.




   A civilization that has become godless because of material advancement in opulence is extremely dangerous. Because of great opulence, a materialist becomes so proud that he has no regard for anyone and even refuses to accept the authority of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The result of such a mentality is certainly very dangerous. To show special favor, the Lord sometimes makes an example of someone like Bali Maharaja, who was now bereft of all his possessions.


                               TEXT 25




                         yada kadacij jivatma

                       samsaran nija-karmabhih

                        nana-yonisv aniso 'yam

                        paurusim gatim avrajet




   yada--when; kadacit--sometimes; jiva-atma--the living entity; samsaran--rotating in the cycle of birth and death; nija-karmabhih--because of his own fruitive activities; nana-yonisu--in different species of life; anisah--not independent (completely under the control of material nature); ayam--this living entity; paurusim gatim--the situation of being human; avrajet--wants to obtain.




   While rotating in the cycle of birth and death again and again in different species because of his own fruitive activities, the dependent living entity, by good fortune, may happen to become a human being. This human birth is very rarely obtained.




   The Supreme Personality of Godhead is fully independent. Thus it is not always a fact that a living being's loss of all opulence is a sign of the Supreme Lord's mercy upon him. The Lord can act any way He likes. He may take away one's opulence, or He may not. There are varieties of forms of life, and the Lord treats them according to the circumstances, as He chooses. Generally it is to be understood that the human form of life is one of great responsibility.


                       purusah prakrti-stho hi

                       bhunkte prakrtijan gunan

                       karanam guna-sango 'sya



   "The living entity in material nature follows the ways of life, enjoying the three modes of nature. This is due to his association with that material nature. Thus he meets with good and evil amongst various species." (Bg. 13.22) After thus rotating through many, many forms of life in the cycle of birth and death, the living being gets a chance for a human form. Therefore every human being, especially one belonging to a civilized nation or culture, must be extremely responsible in his activities. He should not risk degradation in the next life. Because the body will change (tatha dehantara-praptir), we should be extremely careful. To see to the proper use of life is the purpose of Krsna consciousness. The foolish living entity declares freedom from all control, but factually he is not free; he is fully under the control of material nature. He must therefore be most careful and responsible in the activities of his life.


                               TEXT 26






                     yady asya na bhavet stambhas

                        tatrayam mad-anugrahah




   janma--by birth in an aristocratic family; karma--by wonderful activities, pious activities; vayah--by age, especially youth, when one is capable of doing many things; rupa--by personal beauty, which attracts everyone; vidya--by education; aisvarya--by opulence; dhana--by wealth; adibhih--by other opulences also; yadi--if; asya--of the possessor; na--not; bhavet--there is; stambhah--pride; tatra--in such a condition; ayam--a person; mat-anugrahah--should be considered to have received My special mercy.




   If a human being is born in an aristocratic family or a higher status of life, if he performs wonderful activities, if he is youthful, if he has personal beauty, a good education and good wealth, and if he is nonetheless not proud of his opulences, it is to be understood that he is especially favored by the Supreme Personality of Godhead.




   When in spite of possessing all these opulences a person is not proud, this means that he is fully aware that all his opulences are due to the mercy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He therefore engages all his possessions in the service of the Lord. A devotee knows very well that everything, even his body, belongs to the Supreme Lord. If one lives perfectly in such Krsna consciousness, it is to be understood that he is especially favored by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The conclusion is that one's being deprived of his wealth is not to be considered the special mercy of the Lord. If one continues in his opulent position but does not become unnecessarily proud, falsely thinking that he is the proprietor of everything, this is the Lord's special mercy.


                               TEXT 27





                        janmadinam samantatah


                      hanta muhyen na mat-parah




   mana--of false prestige; stambha--because of this impudence; nimittanam--which are the causes; janma-adinam--such as birth in a high family; samantatah--taken together; sarva-sreyah--for the supreme benefit of life; pratipanam--which are impediments; hanta--also; muhyet--becomes bewildered; na--not; mat-parah--My pure devotee.




   Although aristocratic birth and other such opulences are impediments to advancement in devotional service because they are causes of false prestige and pride, these opulences never disturb a pure devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.




   Devotees like Dhruva Maharaja, who was given unlimited material opulence, have the special mercy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Once Kuvera wanted to give Dhruva Maharaja a benediction, but although Dhruva Maharaja could have asked him for any amount of material opulence, he instead begged Kuvera that he might continue his devotional service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. When a devotee is fixed in his devotional service, there is no need for the Lord to deprive him of his material opulences. The Supreme Personality of Godhead never takes away material opulences achieved because of devotional service, although He sometimes takes away opulences achieved by pious activities. He does this to make a devotee prideless or put him in a better position in devotional service. If a special devotee is meant for preaching but does not give up his family life or material opulences to take to the service of the Lord, the Lord surely takes away his material opulences and establishes him in devotional service. Thus the pure devotee becomes fully engaged in propagating Krsna consciousness.


                               TEXT 28




                         esa danava-daityanam

                       agranih kirti-vardhanah

                         ajaisid ajayam mayam

                        sidann api na muhyati




   esah--this Bali Maharaja; danava-daityanam--among the demons and unbelievers; agranih--the foremost devotee; kirti-vardhanah--the most famous; ajaisit--has already surpassed; ajayam--the insurmountable; mayam--material energy; sidan--being bereft (of all material opulences); api--although; na--not; muhyati--is bewildered.




   Bali Maharaja has become the most famous among the demons and nonbelievers, for in spite of being bereft of all material opulences, he is fixed in his devotional service.




   In this verse, the words sidann api na muhyati are very important. A devotee is sometimes put into adversity while executing devotional service. In adversity, everyone laments and becomes aggrieved, but by the grace of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, a devotee, even in the worst condition, can understand that he is going through a severe examination by the Personality of Godhead. Bali Maharaja passed all such examinations, as explained in the following verses.


                             TEXTS 29-30




                     ksina-rikthas cyutah sthanat

                     ksipto baddhas ca satrubhih

                       jnatibhis ca parityakto

                          yatanam anuyapitah


                       guruna bhartsitah sapto

                       jahau satyam na suvratah

                       chalair ukto maya dharmo

                       nayam tyajati satya-vak




   ksina-rikthah--although bereft of all riches; cyutah--fallen; sthanat--from his superior position; ksiptah--forcefully thrown away; baddhah ca--and forcefully bound; satrubhih--by his enemies; jnatibhih ca--and by his family members or relatives; parityaktah--deserted; yatanam--all kinds of suffering; anuyapitah--unusually severely suffered; guruna--by his spiritual master; bhartsitah--rebuked; saptah--and cursed; jahau--gave up; satyam--truthfulness; na--not; su-vratah--being fixed in his vow; chalaih--pretentiously; uktah--spoken; maya--by Me; dharmah--the religious principles; na--not; ayam--this Bali Maharaja; tyajati--does give up; satya-vak--being true to his word.




   Although bereft of his riches, fallen from his original position, defeated and arrested by his enemies, rebuked and deserted by his relatives and friends, although suffering the pain of being bound and although rebuked and cursed by his spiritual master, Bali Maharaja, being fixed in his vow, did not give up his truthfulness. It was certainly with pretension that I spoke about religious principles, but he did not give up religious principles, for he is true to his word.




   Bali Maharaja passed the severe test put before him by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This is further proof of the Lord's mercy toward His devotee. The Supreme Personality of Godhead sometimes puts a devotee to severe tests that are almost unbearable. One could hardly even live under the conditions forced upon Bali Maharaja. That Bali Maharaja endured all these severe tests and austerities is the mercy of the Supreme Lord. The Lord certainly appreciates the devotee's forbearance, and it is recorded for the future glorification of the devotee. This was not an ordinary test. As described in this verse, hardly anyone could survive such a test, but for the future glorification of Bali Maharaja, one of the mahajanas, the Supreme Personality of Godhead not only tested him but also gave him the strength to tolerate such adversity. The Lord is so kind to His devotee that when severely testing him the Lord gives him the necessary strength to be tolerant and continue to remain a glorious devotee.


                               TEXT 31




                       esa me prapitah sthanam

                        dusprapam amarair api

                        savarner antarasyayam

                       bhavitendro mad-asrayah




   esah--Bali Maharaja; me--by Me; prapitah--has achieved; sthanam--a place; dusprapam--extremely difficult to obtain; amaraih api--even by the demigods; savarneh antarasya--during the period of the Manu known as Savarni; ayam--this Bali Maharaja; bhavita--will become; indrah--the lord of the heavenly planet; mat-asrayah--completely under My protection.




   The Lord continued: Because of his great tolerance, I have given him a place not obtainable even by the demigods. He will become King of the heavenly planets during the period of the Manu known as Savarni.




   This is the mercy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Even if the Lord takes away a devotee's material opulences, the Lord immediately offers him a position of which the demigods cannot even dream. There are many examples of this in the history of devotional service. One of them is the opulence of Sudama Vipra. Sudama Vipra suffered severe material scarcity, but he was not disturbed and did not deviate from devotional service. Thus he was ultimately given an exalted position by the mercy of Lord Krsna. Here the word mad-asrayah is very significant. Because the Lord wanted to give Bali Maharaja the exalted position of Indra, the demigods might naturally have been envious of him and might have fought to disturb his position. But the Supreme Personality of Godhead assured Bali Maharaja that he would always remain under the Lord's protection (mad-asrayah).


                               TEXT 32




                       tavat sutalam adhyastam


                       yad adhayo vyadhayas ca

                       klamas tandra parabhavah

                         nopasarga nivasatam

                        sambhavanti mameksaya




   tavat--as long as you are not in the post of Lord Indra; sutalam--in the planet known as Sutala; adhyastam--go live there and occupy the place; visvakarma-vinirmitam--which is especially created by Visvakarma; yat--wherein; adhayah--miseries pertaining to the mind; vyadhayah--miseries pertaining to the body; ca--also; klamah--fatigue; tandra--dizziness or laziness; parabhavah--becoming defeated; na--not; upasargah--symptoms of other disturbances; nivasatam--of those who live there; sambhavanti--become possible; mama--of Me; iksaya--by the special vigilance.




   Until Bali Maharaja achieves the position of King of heaven, he shall live on the planet Sutala, which was made by Visvakarma according to My order. Because it is especially protected by Me, it is free from mental and bodily miseries, fatigue, dizziness, defeat and all other disturbances. Bali Maharaja, you may now go live there peacefully.




   Visvakarma is the engineer or architect for the palatial buildings in the heavenly planets. Therefore, since he was engaged to construct the residential quarters of Bali Maharaja, the buildings and palaces on the planet Sutala must at least equal those on the heavenly planets. A further advantage of this place designed for Bali Maharaja was that he would not be disturbed by any outward calamity. Moreover, he would not be disturbed by mental or bodily miseries. These are all extraordinary features of the planet Sutala, where Bali Maharaja would live.

   In the Vedic literatures we find descriptions of many different planets where there are many, many palaces, hundreds and thousands of times better than those of which we have experience on this planet earth. When we speak of palaces, this naturally includes the idea of great cities and towns. Unfortunately, when modern scientists try to explore other planets they see nothing but rocks and sand. Of course, they may go on their frivolous excursions, but the students of the Vedic literature will never believe them or give them any credit for exploring other planets.


                               TEXT 33




                          indrasena maharaja

                       yahi bho bhadram astu te

                     sutalam svargibhih prarthyam

                        jnatibhih parivaritah




   indrasena--O Maharaja Bali; maharaja--O King; yahi--better go; bhoh--O King; bhadram--all auspiciousness; astu--let there be; te--unto you; sutalam--in the planet known as Sutala; svargibhih--by the demigods; prarthyam--desirable; jnatibhih--by your family members; parivaritah--surrounded.




   O Bali Maharaja [Indrasena], now you may go to the planet Sutala, which is desired even by the demigods. Live there peacefully, surrounded by your friends and relatives. All good fortune unto you.




   Bali Maharaja was transferred from the heavenly planet to the planet Sutala, which is hundreds of times better than heaven, as indicated by the words svargibhih prarthyam. When the Supreme Personality of Godhead deprives His devotee of material opulences, this does not mean that the Lord puts him into poverty; rather, the Lord promotes him to a higher position. The Supreme Personality of Godhead did not ask Bali Maharaja to separate from his family; instead, the Lord allowed him to stay with his family members (jnatibhih parivaritah).


                               TEXT 34




                       na tvam abhibhavisyanti

                         lokesah kim utapare

                      tvac-chasanatigan daityams

                        cakram me sudayisyati




   na--not; tvam--unto you; abhibhavisyanti--will be able to conquer; loka-isah--the predominating deities of the various planets; kim uta apare--what to speak of ordinary people; tvat-sasana-atigan--who transgress your rulings; daityan--such demons; cakram--disc; me--My; sudayisyati--will kill.




   On the planet Sutala, not even the predominating deities of other planets, what to speak of ordinary people, will be able to conquer you. As far as the demons are concerned, if they transgress your rule, My disc will kill them.


                               TEXT 35




                      raksisye sarvato 'ham tvam

                        sanugam saparicchadam

                         sada sannihitam vira

                      tatra mam draksyate bhavan




   raksisye--shall protect; sarvatah--in all respects; aham--I; tvam--you; sa-anugam--with your associates; sa-paricchadam--with your paraphernalia; sada--always; sannihitam--situated nearby; vira--O great hero; tatra--there, in your place; mam--Me; draksyate--will be able to see; bhavan--you.




   O great hero, I shall always be with you and give you protection in all respects along with your associates and paraphernalia. Moreover, you will always be able to see Me there.


                               TEXT 36




                        tatra danava-daityanam

                        sangat te bhava asurah

                       drstva mad-anubhavam vai

                      sadyah kuntho vinanksyati




   tatra--in that place; danava-daityanam--of the demons and the Danavas; sangat--because of the association; te--your; bhavah--mentality; asurah--demoniac; drstva--by observing; mat-anubhavam--My superexcellent power; vai--indeed; sadyah--immediately; kunthah--anxiety; vinanksyati--will be destroyed.




   Because there you will see My supreme prowess, your materialistic ideas and anxieties that have arisen from your association with the demons and Danavas will immediately be vanquished.




   The Lord assured Bali Maharaja of all protection, and finally the Lord assured him of protection from the effects of bad association with the demons. Bali Maharaja certainly became an exalted devotee, but he was somewhat anxious because his association was not purely devotional. The Supreme Personality of Godhead therefore assured him that his demoniac mentality would be annihilated. In other words, by the association of devotees, the demoniac mentality is vanquished.


                  satam prasangan mama virya-samvido

                 bhavanti hrt-karna-rasayanah kathah


   (Bhag. 3.25.25)


   When a demon associates with devotees engaged in glorifying the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he gradually becomes a pure devotee.


Thus end the Bhaktivedanta purports of the Eighth Canto, Twenty-second Chapter, of the Srimad-Bhagavatam, entitled "Bali Maharaja Surrenders His Life."

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