Chapter Nine

                  Appearance of the Demon Vrtrasura


   As described in this chapter, Indra, the King of heaven, killed Visvarupa, and therefore Visvarupa's father performed a yajna to kill Indra. When Vrtrasura appeared from that yajna, the demigods, in fear, sought shelter of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and glorified Him.

   Because of affection for the demons, Visvarupa secretly supplied them the remnants of yajna. When Indra learned about this, he beheaded Visvarupa, but he later regretted killing Visvarupa because Visvarupa was a brahmana. Although competent to neutralize the sinful reactions for killing a brahmana, Indra did not do so. Instead he accepted the reactions. Later, he distributed these reactions among the land, water, trees and women in general. Since the land accepted one fourth of the sinful reactions, a portion of the land turned into desert. The trees were also given one fourth of the sinful reactions, and therefore they drip sap, which is prohibited for drinking. Because women accepted one fourth of the sinful reactions, they are untouchable during their menstrual period. Since water was also infested with sinful reactions, when bubbles appear in water it cannot be used for any purpose.

   After Visvarupa was killed, his father, Tvasta, performed a sacrifice to kill King Indra. Unfortunately, if mantras are chanted irregularly, they yield an opposite result. This happened when Tvasta performed this yajna. While performing the sacrifice to kill Indra. Tvasta chanted a mantra to increase Indra's enemies, but because he chanted the mantra wrong, the sacrifice produced an asura named Vrtrasura, of whom Indra was the enemy. When Vrtrasura was generated from the sacrifice, his fierce features made the whole world afraid, and his personal effulgence diminished even the power of the demigods. Finding no other means of protection, the demigods began to worship the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the enjoyer of all the results of sacrifice, who is supreme throughout the entire universe. The demigods all worshiped Him because ultimately no one but Him can protect a living entity from fear and danger. Seeking shelter of a demigod instead of worshiping the Supreme Personality of Godhead is compared to trying to cross the ocean by grasping the tail of a dog. A dog can swim, but that does not mean that one can cross the ocean by grasping a dog's tail.

   Being pleased with the demigods, the Supreme Personality of Godhead advised them to approach Dadhici to beg him for the bones of his own body. Dadhici would comply with the request of the demigods, and with the help of his bones Vrtrasura could be killed.


                                TEXT 1




                            sri-suka uvaca

                        tasyasan visvarupasya

                        siramsi trini bharata

                       soma-pitham sura-pitham

                         annadam iti susruma




   sri-sukah uvaca--Sri Sukadeva Gosvami said; tasya--of him; asan--there were; visvarupasya--of Visvarupa, the priest of the demigods; siramsi--heads; trini--three; bharata--O Maharaja Pariksit; soma-pitham--used for drinking the beverage soma; sura-pitham--used for drinking wine; anna-adam--used for eating; iti--thus; susruma--I have heard by the parampara system.




   Sri Sukadeva Gosvami continued: Visvarupa, who was engaged as the priest of the demigods, had three heads. He used one to drink the beverage soma-rasa, another to drink wine and the third to eat food. O King Pariksit, thus I have heard from authorities.




   One cannot directly perceive the kingdom of heaven, its king and other inhabitants, or how they perform their various engagements, for no one can go to the heavenly planets. Although modern scientists have invented many powerful space vehicles, they cannot even go to the moon, not to speak of other planets. By direct experience one cannot learn anything beyond the range of human perception. One must hear from authorities. Therefore Sukadeva Gosvami, a great personality, says, "What I am describing to you, O King, is what I have heard from authoritative sources." This is the Vedic system. The Vedic knowledge is called sruti because it must be received by being heard from authorities. It is beyond the realm of our false experimental knowledge.


                                TEXT 2




                       sa vai barhisi devebhyo

                      bhagam pratyaksam uccakaih

                         adadad yasya pitaro

                        devah saprasrayam nrpa




   sah--he (Visvarupa); vai--indeed; barhisi--in the sacrificial fire; devebhyah--unto the particular demigods; bhagam--the proper share; pratyaksam--visibly; uccakaih--by loud chanting of the mantras; adadat--offered; yasya--of whom; pitarah--the fathers; devah--demigods; sa-prasrayam--very humbly in a gentle voice; nrpa--O King Pariksit.




   O Maharaja Pariksit, the demigods were related to Visvarupa from his father's side, and therefore he visibly offered clarified butter in the fire while chanting mantras such as indraya idam svaha ["this is meant for King Indra"] and idam agnaye ["this is for the demigod of fire"]. He loudly chanted these mantras and offered each of the demigods his proper share.


                                TEXT 3




                        sa eva hi dadau bhagam

                        paroksam asuran prati

                        yajamano 'vahad bhagam





   sah--he (Visvarupa); eva--indeed; hi--certainly; dadau--offered; bhagam--share; paroksam--without the knowledge of the demigods; asuran--the demons; prati--unto; yajamanah--performing sacrifice; avahat--offered; bhagam--share; matr-sneha--by affection for his mother; vasa-anugah--being compelled.




   Although offering clarified butter in the sacrificial fire in the name of the demigods, without the knowledge of the demigods he also offered oblations to the demons because they were his relatives through his mother.




   Because of Visvarupa's affection for the families of both the demigods and the demons, he appeased the Supreme Lord on behalf of both dynasties. When he offered oblations in the fire on behalf of the asuras, he did so secretly. without the knowledge of the demigods.


                                TEXT 4




                        tad deva-helanam tasya

                        dharmalikam suresvarah

                        alaksya tarasa bhitas

                      tac-chirsany acchinad rusa




   tat--that; deva-helanam--offense to the demigods; tasya--of him (Visvarupa); dharma-alikam--cheating in religious principles (pretending to be the priest of the demigods, but secretly acting as the priest of the demons also); sura-isvarah--the king of the demigods; alaksya--observing; tarasa--quickly; bhitah--being afraid (that the demons would gain strength by being blessed by Visvarupa); tat--his (Visvarupa's); sirsani--heads; acchinat--cut off; rusa--with great anger.




   Once upon a time, however, the King of heaven, Indra, understood that Visvarupa was secretly cheating the demigods by offering oblations on behalf of the demons. He became extremely afraid of being defeated by the demons, and in great anger at Visvarupa he cut Visvarupa's three heads from his shoulders.


                                TEXT 5




                       soma-pitham tu yat tasya

                         sira asit kapinjalah

                        kalavinkah sura-pitham

                       annadam yat sa tittirih




   soma-pitham--used for drinking soma-rasa; tu--however; yat--which; tasya--of him (Visvarupa); sirah--the head; asit--became; kapinjalah--a francolin partridge; kalavinkah--a sparrow; sura-pitham--meant for drinking wine; anna-adam--used for eating food; yat--which; sah--that; tittirih--a common partridge.




   Thereafter, the head meant for drinking soma-rasa was transformed into a kapinjala [francolin partridge]. Similarly, the head meant for drinking wine was transformed into a kalavinka [sparrow], and the head meant for eating food became a tittiri [common partridge].


                                TEXT 6




                        brahma-hatyam anjalina

                        jagraha yad apisvarah

                       samvatsarante tad agham

                        bhutanam sa visuddhaye


                      caturdha vyabhajad dharih




   brahma-hatyam--the sinful reaction for killing a brahmana; anjalina--with folded hands; jagraha--assumed the responsibility for; yat api--although; isvarah--very powerful; samvatsara-ante--after one year; tat agham--that sinful reaction; bhutanam--of the material elements; sah--he; visuddhaye--for purification; bhumi--unto the earth; ambu--water; druma--trees; yosidbhyah--and unto women; caturdha--in four divisions; vyabhajat--divided; harih--King Indra.




   Although Indra was so powerful that he could neutralize the sinful reactions for killing a brahmana, he repentantly accepted the burden of these reactions with folded hands. He suffered for one year, and then to purify himself he distributed the reactions for this sinful killing among the earth, water, trees and women.


                                TEXT 7




                        bhumis turiyam jagraha

                        khata-pura-varena vai

                        irinam brahma-hatyaya

                       rupam bhumau pradrsyate




   bhumih--the earth; turiyam--one fourth; jagraha--accepted; khata-pura--of the filling of holes; varena--because of the benediction; vai--indeed; irinam--the deserts; brahma-hatyayah--of the reaction for killing a brahmana; rupam--form; bhumau--on the earth; pradrsyate--is visible.




   In return for King Indra's benediction that ditches in the earth would be filled automatically, the land accepted one fourth of the sinful reactions for killing a brahmana. Because of those sinful reactions, we find many deserts on the surface of the earth.




   Because deserts are manifestations of the earth's diseased condition, no auspicious ritualistic ceremony can be performed in a desert. Persons destined to live in deserts are understood to be sharing the reactions for the sin of brahma-hatya, the killing of a brahmana.


                                TEXT 8




                        turyam cheda-virohena

                        varena jagrhur drumah

                         tesam niryasa-rupena

                       brahma-hatya pradrsyate




   turyam--one fourth; cheda--although being cut; virohena--of growing again; varena--because of the benediction; jagrhuh--accepted; drumah--the trees; tesam--of them; niryasa-rupena--by the liquid oozing from the trees; brahma-hatya--the reaction for killing a brahmana; pradrsyate--is visible.




   In return for Indra's benediction that their branches and twigs would grow back when trimmed, the trees accepted one fourth of the reactions for killing a brahmana. These reactions are visible in the flowing of sap from trees. [Therefore one is forbidden to drink this sap.]


                                TEXT 9





                       turiyam jagrhuh striyah

                        rajo-rupena tasv amho

                         masi masi pradrsyate




   sasvat--perpetual; kama--of sexual desire; varena--because of the benediction; amhah--the sinful reaction for killing a brahmana; turiyam--one fourth; jagrhuh--accepted; striyah--women; rajah-rupena--in the form of the menstrual period; tasu--in them; amhah--the sinful reaction; masi masi--every month; pradrsyate--is visible.




   In return for Lord Indra's benediction that they would be able to enjoy lusty desires continuously, even during pregnancy for as long as sex is not injurious to the embryo, women accepted one fourth of the sinful reactions. As a result of those reactions, women manifest the signs of menstruation every month.




   Women as a class are very lusty, and apparently their continuous lusty desires are never satisfied. In return for Lord Indra's benediction that there would be no cessation to their lusty desires, women accepted one fourth of the sinful reactions for killing a brahmana.


                               TEXT 10





                        turiyam jagrhur malam

                       tasu budbuda-phenabhyam

                      drstam tad dharati ksipan




   dravya--other things; bhuyah--of increasing; varena--by the benediction; apah--water; turiyam--one fourth; jagrhuh--accepted; malam--the sinful reaction; tasu--in the water; budbuda-phenabhyam--by bubbles and foam; drstam--visible; tat--that; harati--one collects; ksipan--throwing away.




   And in return for King Indra's benediction that water would increase the volume of other substances with which it was mixed, water accepted one fourth of the sinful reactions. Therefore there are bubbles and foam in water. When one collects water, these should be avoided.




   If water is mixed with milk, fruit juice or other similar substances, it increases their volume, and no one can understand which has increased. In return for this benediction, water accepted one fourth of Indra's sinful reactions. These sinful reactions are visible in foam and bubbles. Therefore one should avoid foam and bubbles while collecting drinking water.


                               TEXT 11




                       hata-putras tatas tvasta

                         juhavendraya satrave

                       indra-satro vivardhasva

                        ma ciram jahi vidvisam




   hata-putrah--who lost his son; tatah--thereafter; tvasta--Tvasta; juhava--performed a sacrifice; indraya--of Indra; satrave--for creating an enemy; indra-satro--O enemy of Indra; vivardhasva--increase; ma--not; ciram--after a long time; jahi--kill; vidvisam--your enemy.




   After Visvarupa was killed, his father, Tvasta, performed ritualistic ceremonies to kill Indra. He offered oblations in the sacrificial fire, saying, "O enemy of Indra, flourish to kill your enemy without delay."




   There was some defect in Tvasta's chanting of the mantra because he chanted it long instead of short, and therefore the meaning changed. Tvasta intended to chant the word indra-satro, meaning, "O enemy of Indra." In this mantra, the word indra is in the possessive case (sasthi), and the word indra-satro is called a tat-purusa compound (tatpurusa-samasa). Unfortunately, instead of chanting the mantra short, Tvasta chanted it long, and its meaning changed from "the enemy of Indra" to "Indra, who is an enemy." Consequently instead of an enemy of Indra's, there emerged the body of Vrtrasura, of whom Indra was the enemy.


                               TEXT 12





                        utthito ghora-darsanah

                         krtanta iva lokanam

                         yuganta-samaye yatha




   atha--thereafter; anvaharya-pacanat--from the fire known as Anvaharya; utthitah--arisen; ghora-darsanah--appearing very fearful; krtantah--personified annihilation; iva--like; lokanam--of all the planets; yuga-anta--of the end of the millennium; samaye--at the time; yatha--just as.




   Thereafter, from the southern side of the sacrificial fire known as Anvaharya came a fearful personality who looked like the destroyer of the entire creation at the end of the millennium.


                             TEXTS 13-17




                       visvag vivardhamanam tam

                         isu-matram dine dine







                        dedipyamane tri-sikhe

                          sula aropya rodasi

                       nrtyantam unnadantam ca

                        calayantam pada mahim



                        pibata ca nabhastalam

                         lihata jihvayarksani

                        grasata bhuvana-trayam


                       mahata raudra-damstrena

                       jrmbhamanam muhur muhuh

                        vitrasta dudruvur loka

                        viksya sarve diso dasa




   visvak--all around; vivardhamanam--increasing; tam--him; isu-matram--an arrow's flight; dine dine--day after day; dagdha--burnt; saila--mountain; pratikasam--resembling; sandhya--in the evening; abhra-anika--like an array of clouds; varcasam--having an effulgence; tapta--melted; tamra--like copper; sikha--hair; smasrum--moustache and beard; madhyahna--at midday; arka--like the sun; ugra-locanam--having powerful eyes; dedipyamane--blazing; tri-sikhe--three-pointed; sule--on his spear; aropya--keeping; rodasi--heaven and earth; nrtyantam--dancing; unnadantam--shouting loudly; ca--and; calayantam--moving; pada--by his foot; mahim--the earth; dari-gambhira--as deep as a cave; vaktrena--by the mouth; pibata--drinking; ca--also; nabhastalam--the sky; lihata--licking up; jihvaya--by the tongue; rksani--the stars; grasata--swallowing; bhuvana-trayam--the three worlds; mahata--very great; raudra-damstrena--with fearful teeth; jrmbhamanam--yawning; muhuh muhuh--again and again; vitrastah--fearful; dudruvuh--ran; lokah--people; viksya--seeing; sarve--all; disah dasa--ten directions.




   Like arrows released in the four directions, the demon's body grew, day after day. Tall and blackish, he appeared like a burnt hill and was as lustrous as a bright array of clouds in the evening. The hair on the demon's body and his beard and moustache were the color of melted copper, and his eyes were piercing like the midday sun. He appeared unconquerable, as if holding the three worlds on the points of his blazing trident. Dancing and shouting with a loud voice, he made the entire surface of the earth tremble as if from an earthquake. As he yawned again and again, he seemed to be trying to swallow the whole sky with his mouth, which was as deep as a cave. He seemed to be licking up all the stars in the sky with his tongue and eating the entire universe with his long, sharp teeth. Seeing this gigantic demon, everyone, in great fear, ran here and there in all directions.


                               TEXT 18




                          yenavrta ime lokas

                        tapasa tvastra-murtina

                       sa vai vrtra iti proktah

                         papah parama-darunah




   yena--by whom; avrtah--covered; ime--all these; lokah--planets; tapasa--by the austerity; tvastra-murtina--in the form of the son of Tvasta; sah--he; vai--indeed; vrtrah--Vrtra; iti--thus; proktah--called; papah--personified sin; parama-darunah--very fearful.




   That very fearful demon, who was actually the son of Tvasta, covered all the planetary systems by dint of austerity. Therefore he was named Vrtra, or one who covers everything.




   In the Vedas it is said, sa imal lokan avrnot tad vrtrasya vrtratvam: because the demon covered all the planetary systems, his name was Vrtrasura.


                               TEXT 19




                       tam nijaghnur abhidrutya

                        sagana vibudharsabhah

                  svaih svair divyastra-sastraughaih

                      so 'grasat tani krtsnasah




   tam--him; nijaghnuh--struck; abhidrutya--running to; sa-ganah--with soldiers; vibudha-rsabhah--all the great demigods; svaih svaih--with their own respective; divya--transcendental; astra--bows and arrows; sastra-oghaih--different weapons; sah--he (Vrtra); agrasat--swallowed; tani--them (the weapons); krtsnasah--all together.




   The demigods, headed by Indra, charged the demon with their soldiers, striking him with their own transcendental bows and arrows and other weapons but Vrtrasura swallowed all their weapons.


                               TEXT 20




                       tatas te vismitah sarve

                        visanna grasta-tejasah

                        pratyancam adi-purusam

                         upatasthuh samahitah




   tatah--thereafter; te--they (the demigods); vismitah--being struck with wonder; sarve--all; visannah--being very morose; grasta-tejasah--having lost all their personal strength; pratyancam--to the Supersoul; adi-purusam--the original person; upatasthuh--prayed; samahitah--all gathered together.




   Struck with wonder and disappointment upon seeing the strength of the demon, the demigods lost their own strength. Therefore they all met together to try to please the Supersoul, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Narayana, by worshiping Him.


                               TEXT 21




                            sri-deva ucuh

                 vayv-ambaragny-ap-ksitayas tri-loka

                    brahmadayo ye vayam udvijantah

                   harama yasmai balim antako 'sau

                    bibheti yasmad aranam tato nah




   sri-devah ucuh--the demigods said; vayu--composed of air; ambara--sky; agni--fire; ap--water; ksitayah--and land; tri-lokah--the three worlds; brahma-adayah--beginning from Lord Brahma; ye--who; vayam--we; udvijantah--being very much afraid; harama--offer; yasmai--unto whom; balim--presentation; antakah--the destroyer, death; asau--that; bibheti--fears; yasmat--from whom; aranam--shelter; tatah--therefore; nah--our.




   The demigods said: The three worlds are created by the five elements--namely ether, air, fire, water and earth--which are controlled by various demigods, beginning from Lord Brahma. Being very much afraid that the time factor will end our existence, we offer presentations unto time by performing our work as time dictates. The time factor himself, however, is afraid of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Therefore let us now worship that Supreme Lord, who alone can give us full protection.




   When one is afraid of being killed, one must take shelter of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He is worshiped by all the demigods. beginning from Brahma, although they are in charge of the various elements of this material world. The words bibheti yasmat indicate that all the demons, regardless of how great and powerful, fear the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The demigods, being afraid of death, took shelter of the Lord and offered Him these prayers. Although the time factor is fearful to everyone, fear personified is afraid of the Supreme Lord, who is therefore known as abhaya, fearless. Taking shelter of the Supreme Lord brings actual fearlessness, and therefore the demigods decided to take shelter of the Lord.


                               TEXT 22




                    avismitam tam paripurna-kamam

                   svenaiva labhena samam prasantam

                   vinopasarpaty aparam hi balisah

                    sva-langulenatititarti sindhum




   avismitam--who is never struck with wonder; tam--Him; paripurna-kamam--who is fully satisfied; svena--by His own; eva--indeed; labhena--achievements; samam--equipoised; prasantam--very steady; vina--without; upasarpati--approaches; aparam--another; hi--indeed; balisah--a fool; sva--of a dog; langulena--by the tail; atititarti--wants to cross; sindhum--the sea.




   Free from all material conceptions of existence and never wonder-struck by anything, the Lord is always jubilant and fully satisfied by His own spiritual perfection. He has no material designations, and therefore He is steady and unattached. That Supreme Personality of Godhead is the only shelter of everyone. Anyone desiring to be protected by others is certainly a great fool who desires to cross the sea by holding the tail of a dog.




   A dog can swim in the water, but if a dog dives in the ocean and someone wants to cross the ocean by holding the dog's tail, he is certainly fool number one. A dog cannot cross the ocean, nor can a person cross the ocean by catching a dog's tail. Similarly, one who desires to cross the ocean of nescience should not seek the shelter of any demigod or anyone else but the fearless shelter of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Srimad-Bhagavatam (10.14.58) therefore says:


                   samasrita ye pada-pallava-plavam

                    mahat-padam punya-yaso-murareh

                 bhavambudhir vatsa-padam param padam

                   padam padam yad vipadam na tesam


   The Lord's lotus feet are an indestructible boat, and if one takes shelter of that boat he can easily cross the ocean of nescience. Consequently there are no dangers for a devotee although he lives within this material world, which is full of dangers at every step. One should seek the shelter of the all-powerful instead of trying to be protected by one's own concocted ideas.


                               TEXT 23




                   yasyoru-srnge jagatim sva-navam

                   manur yathabadhya tatara durgam

                  sa eva nas tvastra-bhayad durantat

                    tratasritan varicaro 'pi nunam




   yasya--of whom; uru--very strong and high; srnge--on the born; jagatim--in the form of the world; sva-navam--his own boat; manuh--Manu, King Satyavrata; yatha--just as; abadhya--binding; tatara--crossed; durgam--the very difficult to cross (inundation); sah--He (the Supreme Personality of Godhead); eva--certainly; nah--us; tvastra-bhayat--from fear of the son of Tvasta; durantat--endless; trata--deliverer; asritan--dependents (like us); vari-carah api--although taking the form of a fish; nunam--indeed.




   The Manu named King Satyavrata formerly saved himself by tying the small boat of the entire world to the horn of the Matsya avatara, the fish incarnation. By the grace of the Matsya avatara, Manu saved himself from the great danger of the flood. May that same fish incarnation save us from the great and fearful danger caused by the son of Tvasta.


                               TEXT 24




                  pura svayambhur api samyamambhasy

                     udirna-vatormi-ravaih karale

                     eko 'ravindat patitas tatara

                 tasmad bhayad yena sa no 'stu parah




   pura--formerly (during the time of creation); svayambhuh--Lord Brahma; api--also; samyama-ambhasi--in the water of inundation; udirna--very high; vata--of wind; urmi--and of waves; ravaih--by the sounds; karale--very fearful; ekah--alone; aravindat--from the lotus seat; patitah--almost fallen; tatara--escaped; tasmat--from that; bhayat--fearful situation; yena--by whom (the Lord); sah--He; nah--of us; astu--let there be; parah--deliverance.




   In the beginning of creation, a tremendous wind caused fierce waves of inundating water. The great waves made such a horrible sound that Lord Brahma almost fell from his seat on the lotus into the water of devastation, but he was saved with the help of the Lord. Thus we also expect the Lord to protect us from this dangerous condition.


                               TEXT 25




                      ya eka iso nija-mayaya nah

                     sasarja yenanusrjama visvam

                   vayam na yasyapi purah samihatah

                  pasyama lingam prthag isa-maninah




   yah--He who; ekah--one; isah--controller; nija-mayaya--by His transcendental potency; nah--us; sasarja--created; yena--by whom (through whose mercy); anusrjama--we also create; visvam--the universe; vayam--we; na--not; yasya--of whom; api--although; purah--in front of us; samihatah--of Him who is acting; pasyama--see; lingam--the form; prthak--separate; isa--as controllers; maninah--thinking of ourselves.




   The Supreme Personality of Godhead, who created us by His external potency and by whose mercy we expand the creation of the universe, is always situated before us as the Supersoul, but we cannot see His form. We are unable to see Him because all of us think that we are separate and independent gods.




   Here is an explanation of why the conditioned soul cannot see the Supreme Personality of Godhead face to face. Even though the Lord appears before us as Lord Krsna or Lord Ramacandra and lives in human society as a leader or king, the conditioned soul cannot understand Him. Avajananti mam mudha manusim tanum asritam: rascals (mudhas) deride the Supreme Personality of Godhead, thinking Him an ordinary human being. However insignificant we are, we think that we are also God, that we can create a universe or that we can create another God. This is why we cannot see or understand the Supreme Personality of Godhead. In this regard, Srila Madhvacarya says:


                         lingam eva pasyamah

                         kadacid abhimanas tu

                         devanam api sann iva

                       prayah kalesu nasty eva

                        taratamyena so 'pi tu


   We are all conditioned to various degrees, but we think that we are God. This is why we cannot understand who God is or see Him face to face.


                             TEXTS 26-27




                  yo nah sapatnair bhrsam ardyamanan

                    devarsi-tiryan-nrsu nitya eva

                   krtavataras tanubhih sva-mayaya

                    krtvatmasat pati yuge yuge ca


                  tam eva devam vayam atma-daivatam

                 param pradhanam purusam visvam anyam

                    vrajama sarve saranam saranyam

                  svanam sa no dhasyati sam mahatma




   yah--He who; nah--us; sapatnaih--by our enemies, the demons; bhrsam--almost always; ardyamanan--being persecuted; deva--among the demigods; rsi--the saintly persons; tiryak--the animals; nrsu--and men; nityah--always; eva--certainly; krta-avatarah--appearing as an incarnation; tanubhih--with different forms; sva-mayaya--by His internal potency; krtva atmasat--considering very near and dear to Him; pati--protects; yuge yuge--in every millennium; ca--and; tam--Him; eva--indeed; devam--the Supreme Lord; vayam--all of us; atma-daivatam--the Lord of all living entities; param--transcendental; pradhanam--the original cause of the total material energy; purusam--the supreme enjoyer; visvam--whose energy constitutes this universe; anyam--separately situated; vrajama--we approach; sarve--all; saranam--shelter; saranyam--suitable as shelter; svanam--unto His own devotees; sah--He; nah--unto us; dhasyati--shall give; sam--good fortune; mahatma--the Supersoul.




   By His inconceivable internal potency, the Supreme Personality of Godhead expands into various transcendental bodies as Vamanadeva, the incarnation of strength among the demigods; Parasurama, the incarnation among saints; Nrsimhadeva and Varaha, incarnations among animals; and Matsya and Kurma, incarnations among aquatics. He accepts various transcendental bodies among all types of living entities, and among human beings He especially appears as Lord Krsna and Lord Rama. By His causeless mercy, He protects the demigods, who are always harassed by the demons. He is the supreme worshipable Deity of all living entities. He is the supreme cause, represented as the male and female creative energies. Although different from this universe, He exists in His universal form [virat-rupa]. In our fearful condition, let us take shelter of Him, for we are sure that the Supreme Lord, the Supreme Soul, will give us His protection.




   In this verse, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Visnu, is ascertained to be the original cause of creation. Sridhara Svami, in his commentary Bhavartha-dipika, replies to the idea that prakrti and purusa are the causes of the cosmic manifestation. As stated herein, param pradhanam purusam visvam anyam: "He is the supreme cause, represented as the male and female creative energies. Although different from this universe, He exists in His universal form [virat 'rupa]." The word prakrti, which is used to indicate the source of generation, refers to the material energy of the Supreme Lord, and the word purusa refers to the living entities, who are the superior energy of the Lord. Both the prakrti and purusa ultimately enter the Supreme Lord, as stated in Bhagavad-gita (prakrtim yanti mamikam).

   Although prakrti and purusa superficially appear to be the causes of the material manifestation, both are emanations of different energies of the Supreme Lord. Therefore the Supreme Lord is the cause of prakrti and purusa. He is the original cause (sarva-karana-karanam). The Naradiya Purana says:


                         avikaro 'pi paramah

                         prakrtis tu vikarini

                         anupravisya govindah

                        prakrtis cabhidhiyate


   Both the prakrti and purusa, which are inferior and superior energies, are emanations from the Supreme Personality of Godhead. As explained in Bhagavad-gita (gam avisya), the Lord enters the prakrti, and then the prakrti creates different manifestations. The prakrti is not independent or beyond His energies. Vasudeva, Lord Sri Krsna, is the original cause of everything. Therefore the Lord says in Bhagavad-gita (10.8):


                        aham sarvasya prabhavo

                       mattah sarvam pravartate

                        iti matva bhajante mam

                        budha bhava-samanvitah


   "I am the source of all spiritual and material worlds. Everything emanates from Me. The wise who perfectly know this engage in My devotional service and worship Me with all their hearts." In Srimad-Bhagavatam (2.9.33) the Lord also says, aham evasam evagre: "Only I existed before the creation." This is confirmed in the Brahmanda Purana as follows:


                         smrtir avyavadhanena

                       prakrtitvam iti sthitih


                        vasudevah parah puman

                        prakrtih purusas ceti

                       sabdair eko 'bhidhiyate


   To generate the universe, the Lord acts indirectly as the purusa and directly as the prakrti. Because both energies emanate from Lord Vasudeva, the all-pervasive Supreme Personality of Godhead, He is known as both prakrti and purusa. Therefore Vasudeva is the cause of everything (sarva-karana-karanam).


                               TEXT 28




                            sri-suka uvaca

                          iti tesam maharaja

                         suranam upatisthatam

                      praticyam disy abhud avih





   sri-sukah uvaca--Sri Sukadeva Gosvami said; iti--thus; tesam--of them; maharaja--O King; suranam--of the demigods; upatisthatam--praying; praticyam--inside; disi--in the direction; abhut--became; avih--visible; sankha-cakra-gada-dharah--bearing the transcendental weapons: the conchshell, disc and club.




   Sri Sukadeva Gosvami said: My dear King, when all the demigods offered Him their prayers, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Hari, carrying His weapons, the conchshell, disc and club, appeared first within their hearts and then before them.


                             TEXTS 29-30




                       atma-tulyaih sodasabhir

                       vina srivatsa-kaustubhau

                        paryupasitam unnidra-



                       drstva tam avanau sarva


                        dandavat patita rajan

                       chanair utthaya tustuvuh




   atma-tulyaih--almost equal to Himself; sodasabhih--by sixteen (servants); vina--without; srivatsa-kaustubhau--the Srivatsa mark and Kaustubha jewel; paryupasitam--being attended on all sides; unnidra--blooming; sarat--of the autumn; amburuha--like lotus flowers; iksanam--having eyes; drstva--seeing; tam--Him (the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Narayana); avanau--on the ground; sarve--all of them; iksana--from directly seeing; ahlada--with happiness; viklavah--being overwhelmed; danda-vat--like a stick; patitah--fell; rajan--O King; sanaih--slowly; utthaya--standing up; tustuvuh--offered prayers.




   Surrounding and serving the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Narayana, were sixteen personal attendants, decorated with ornaments and appearing exactly like Him but without the mark of Srivatsa and the Kaustubha jewel. O King, when all the demigods saw the Supreme Lord in that posture, smiling with eyes like the petals of lotuses grown in autumn, they were overwhelmed with happiness and immediately fell down like rods, offering dandavats. Then they slowly rose and pleased the Lord by offering Him prayers.




   In Vaikunthaloka the Supreme Personality of Godhead has four hands and decorations like the Srivatsa mark on His chest and the gem known as Kaustubha. These are special indications of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The Lord's personal attendants and other devotees in Vaikuntha have the same features, except for the Srivatsa mark and the Kaustubha gem.


                               TEXT 31




                            sri-deva ucuh

                        namas te yajna-viryaya

                         vayase uta te namah

                       namas te hy asta-cakraya

                         namah supuru-hutaye




   sri-devah ucuh--the demigods said; namah--obeisances; te--unto You; yajna-viryaya--unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is able to give the results of sacrifice; vayase--who is the time factor, which ends the results of yajna; uta--although; te--unto You; namah--obeisances; namah--obeisances; te--unto You; hi--indeed; asta-cakraya--who throws the disc; namah--respectful obeisances; supuru-hutaye--having varieties of transcendental names.




   The demigods said: O Supreme Personality of Godhead, You are competent to give the results of sacrifice, and You are also the time factor that destroys all such results in due course. You are the one who releases the cakra to kill the demons. O Lord, who possesses many varieties of names, we offer our respectful obeisances unto You.


                               TEXT 32




                        yat te gatinam tisrnam

                         isituh paramam padam

                         narvacino visargasya

                        dhatar veditum arhati




   yat--which; te--of You; gatinam tisrnam--of the three destinations (the heavenly planets, the earthly planets and hell); isituh--who are the controller; paramam padam--the supreme abode, Vaikunthaloka; na--not; arvacinah--a person appearing after; visargasya--the creation; dhatah--O supreme controller; veditum--to understand; arhati--is able.




   O supreme controller, You control the three destinations [promotion to the heavenly planets, birth as a human being, and condemnation in hell], yet Your supreme abode is Vaikuntha-dhama. Since we appeared after You created this cosmic manifestation, Your activities are impossible for us to understand. We therefore have nothing to offer You but our humble obeisances.




   An inexperienced man generally does not know what to beg from the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Everyone is under the jurisdiction of the created material world, and no one knows what benediction to ask when praying to the Supreme Lord. People generally pray to be promoted to the heavenly planets because they have no information of Vaikunthaloka. Srila Madhvacarya quotes the following verse:


                        deva-lokat pitr-lokat

                        nirayac capi yat param

                      tisrbhyah paramam sthanam

                       vaisnavam vidusam gatih


   There are different planetary systems, known as Devaloka (the planets of the demigods), Pitrloka (the planet of the Pitas) and Niraya (the hellish planets). When one transcends these various planetary systems and enters Vaikunthaloka, he achieves the ultimate resort of the Vaisnavas. Vaisnavas have nothing to do with the other planetary systems.


                               TEXT 33




om namas te 'stu bhagavan narayana vasudevadi-purusa maha-purusa mahanubhava parama-mangala parama-kalyana parama-karunika kevala jagad-adhara lokaika-natha sarvesvara laksmi-natha paramahamsa-parivrajakaih paramenatma-yoga-samadhina paribhavita-parisphuta-paramahamsya-dharmenodghatita-tamah-kapata-dvare citte 'pavrta atma-loke svayam upalabdha-nija-sukhanubhavo bhavan.




   om--O Lord; namah--respectful obeisances; te--unto You; astu--let there be; bhagavan--O Supreme Personality of Godhead; narayana--the resort of all living entities, Narayana; vasudeva--Lord Vasudeva, Sri Krsna; adi-purusa--the original person; maha-purusa--the most exalted personality; maha-anubhava--the supremely opulent; parama-mangala--the most auspicious; parama-kalyana--the supreme benediction; parama-karunika--the supremely merciful; kevala--changeless; jagat-adhara--the support of the cosmic manifestation; loka-eka-natha--the only proprietor of all the planetary systems; sarva-isvara--the supreme controller; laksmi-natha--the husband of the goddess of fortune; paramahamsa-parivrajakaih--by the topmost sannyasis wandering all over the world; paramena--by supreme; atma-yoga-samadhina--absorption in bhakti-yoga; paribhavita--fully purified; parisphuta--and fully manifested; paramahamsya-dharmena--by executing the transcendental process of devotional service; udghatita--pushed open; tamah--of illusory existence; kapata--in which the door; dvare--existing as the entrance; citte--in the mind; apavrte--without contamination; atma-loke--in the spiritual world; svayam--personally; upalabdha--experiencing; nija--personal; sukha-anubhavah--perception of happiness; bhavan--Your Lordship.




   O Supreme Personality of Godhead, O Narayana, O Vasudeva, original person! O most exalted person, supreme experience, welfare personified! O supreme benediction, supremely merciful and changeless! O support of the cosmic manifestation, sole proprietor of all planetary systems, master of everything and husband of the goddess of fortune! Your Lordship is realized by the topmost sannyasis, who wander about the world to preach Krsna consciousness, fully absorbed in samadhi through bhakti-yoga. Because their minds are concentrated upon You, they can receive the conception of Your personality in their fully purified hearts. When the darkness in their hearts is completely eradicated and You are revealed to them, the transcendental bliss they enjoy is the transcendental form of Your Lordship. No one but such persons can realize You. Therefore we simply offer You our respectful obeisances.




   The Supreme Personality of Godhead has numerous transcendental names pertaining to different grades of revelation to various grades of devotees and transcendentalists. When He is realized in His impersonal form He is called the Supreme Brahman, when realized as the Paramatma He is called antaryami, and when He expands Himself in different forms for material creation He is called Ksirodakasayi Visnu, Garbhodakasayi Visnu and Karanodakasayi Visnu. When He is realized as Vasudeva, Sankarsana, Pradyumna and Aniruddha--the Caturvyuha, who are beyond the three forms of Visnu--He is the Vaikuntha Narayana. Above realization of Narayana is realization of Baladeva, and above that is realization of Krsna. All these realizations are possible when one engages fully in devotional service. The covered core of one's heart is then completely open to receiving an understanding of the Supreme Personality of Godhead in His various forms.


                               TEXT 34




duravabodha iva tavayam vihara-yogo yad asarano 'sarira idam anaveksitasmat-samavaya atmanaivavikriyamanena sagunam agunah srjasi pasi harasi.




   duravabodhah--difficult to understand; iva--quite; tava--Your; ayam--this; vihara-yogah--engagement in the pastimes of material creation, maintenance and annihilation; yat--which; asaranah--not dependent on any other support; asarirah--without having a material body; idam--this; anaveksita--without waiting for; asmat--of us; samavayah--the cooperation; atmana--by Your own self; eva--indeed; avikriyamanena--without being transformed; sa-gunam--the material modes of nature; agunah--although transcendental to such material qualities; srjasi--You create; pasi--maintain; harasi--annihilate.




   O Lord, You need no support, and although You have no material body, You do not need cooperation from us. Since You are the cause of the cosmic manifestation and You supply its material ingredients without being transformed, You create, maintain and annihilate this cosmic manifestation by Yourself. Nevertheless, although You appear engaged in material activity, You are transcendental to all material qualities. Consequently these transcendental activities of Yours are extremely difficult to understand.




   The Brahma-samhita (5.37) says, goloka eva nivasaty akhilatma-bhutah: the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krsna, is always situated in Goloka Vrndavana. It is also said, vrndavanam parityajya padam ekam na gacchati: Krsna never goes even a step from Vrndavana. Nevertheless, although Krsna is situated in His own abode, Goloka Vrndavana, He is simultaneously all-pervading and is therefore present everywhere. This is very difficult for a conditioned soul to understand. but devotees can understand how Krsna, without undergoing any changes, can simultaneously be in His abode and be all-pervasive. The demigods are understood to be various limbs of the Supreme Lord's body, although the Supreme Lord has no material body and does not need anyone's help. He is spread everywhere (maya tatam idam sarvam jagad avyakta-murtina). Nevertheless, He is not present everywhere in His spiritual form. According to the Mayavada philosophy, the Supreme Truth, being all-pervasive, does not need a transcendental form. The Mayavadis suppose that since His form is distributed everywhere, He has no form. This is untrue. The Lord keeps His transcendental form, and at the same time He extends everywhere, in every nook and corner of the material creation.


                               TEXT 35




atha tatra bhavan kim devadattavad iha guna-visarga-patitah paratantryena sva-krta-kusalakusalam phalam upadadaty ahosvid atmarama upasama-silah samanjasa-darsana udasta iti ha vava na vidamah.




   atha--therefore; tatra--in that; bhavan--Your Lordship; kim--whether; deva-datta-vat--like an ordinary human being, forced by the fruits of his activities; iha--in this material world; guna-visarga-patitah--fallen in a material body impelled by the modes of material nature; paratantryena--by dependence on the conditions of time, space, activity and nature; sva-krta--executed by oneself; kusala--auspicious; akusalam--inauspicious; phalam--results of action; upadadati--accepts; ahosvit--or; atmaramah--completely self-satisfied; upasama-silah--self-controlled in nature; samanjasa-darsanah--not deprived of full spiritual potencies; udaste--remains neutral as the witness; iti--thus; ha vava--certainly; na vidamah--we do not understand.




   These are our inquiries. The ordinary conditioned soul is subject to the material laws, and he thus receives the fruits of his actions. Does Your Lordship, like an ordinary human being, exist within this material world in a body produced by the material modes? Do You enjoy or suffer the good or bad results of actions under the influence of time, past work and so forth? Or, on the contrary, are You present here only as a neutral witness who is self-sufficient, free from all material desires, and always full of spiritual potency? We certainly cannot understand Your actual position.




   In Bhagavad-gita Krsna says that He descends to this material world for two purposes, namely paritranaya sadhunam vinasaya ca duskrtam--to relieve the devotees and kill demons or nondevotees. These two kinds of action are the same for the Absolute Truth. When the Lord comes to punish the demons, He bestows His favor upon them, and similarly when He delivers His devotees and gives them relief, He also bestows His favor. Thus the Lord bestows His favor equally upon the conditioned souls. When a conditioned soul gives relief to others he acts piously, and when he gives trouble to others he acts impiously, but the Lord is neither pious nor impious; He is always full in His spiritual potency, by which He shows equal mercy to the punishable and the protectable. The Lord is apapa-viddham; He is never contaminated by the reactions of so-called sinful activities. When Krsna was present on this earth, He killed many inimical nondevotees, but they all received sarupya; in other words, they returned to their original spiritual bodies. One who does not know the Lord's position says that God is unkind to him but merciful to others. Actually the Lord says in Bhagavad-gita (9.29), samo 'ham sarva-bhutesu na me dvesyo 'sti na priyah: "I am equal to everyone. No one is My enemy, and no one is My friend." But He also says, ye bhajanti tu mam bhaktya mayi te tesu capy aham: "If one becomes My devotee and fully surrenders unto Me, I give him special attention."


                               TEXT 36




na hi virodha ubhayam bhagavaty aparimita-guna-gana isvare 'navagahya-mahatmye 'rvacina-vikalpa-vitarka-vicara-pramanabhasa-kutarka-sastra-kalilantahkaranasraya-duravagraha-vadinam vivadanavasara uparata-samasta-mayamaye kevala evatma-mayam antardhaya ko nv artho durghata iva bhavati svarupa-dvayabhavat.




   na--not; hi--certainly; virodhah--contradiction; ubhayam--both; bhagavati--in the Supreme personality of Godhead; aparimita--unlimited; guna-gane--whose transcendental attributes; isvare--in the supreme controller; anavagahya--possessing; mahatmye--unfathomable ability and glories; arvacina--recent; vikalpa--full of equivocal calculations; vitarka--opposing arguments; vicara--judgments; pramana-abhasa--imperfect evidence; kutarka--useless arguments; sastra--by unauthorized scriptures; kalila--agitated; antahkarana--minds; asraya--whose shelter; duravagraha--with wicked obstinacies; vadinam--of theorists; vivada--of the controversies; anavasare--not within the range; uparata--withdrawn; samasta--from whom all; maya-maye--illusory energy; kevale--without a second; eva--indeed; atma-mayam--the illusory energy, which can do and undo the inconceivable; antardhaya--placing between; kah--what; nu--indeed; arthah--meaning; durghatah--impossible; iva--as it were; bhavati--is; sva-rupa--natures; dvaya--of two; abhavat--due to the absence.




   O Supreme Personality of Godhead, all contradictions can be reconciled in You. O Lord, since You are the Supreme Person, the reservoir of unlimited spiritual qualities, the supreme controller, Your unlimited glories are inconceivable to the conditioned souls. Many modern theologians argue about right and wrong without knowing what is actually right. Their arguments are always false and their judgments inconclusive because they have no authorized evidence with which to gain knowledge of You. Because their minds are agitated by scriptures containing false conclusions, they are unable to understand the truth concerning You. Furthermore, because of polluted eagerness to arrive at the right conclusion, their theories are incapable of revealing You, who are transcendental to their material conceptions. You are one without a second, and therefore in You contradictions like doing and not doing, happiness and distress, are not contradictory. Your potency is so great that it can do and undo anything as You like. With the help of that potency, what is impossible for You? Since there is no duality in Your constitutional position, You can do everything by the influence of Your energy.




   The Supreme Personality of Godhead, being self-sufficient, is full of transcendental bliss (atmarama). He enjoys bliss in two ways--when He appears happy and when He appears distressed. Distinctions and contradictions are impossible in Him because only from Him have they emanated. The Supreme Personality of Godhead is the reservoir of all knowledge, all potency, all strength, opulence and influence. There is no limit to His powers. Since He is full in all transcendental attributes, nothing abominable from the material world can exist in Him. He is transcendental and spiritual, and therefore conceptions of material happiness and distress do not apply to Him.

   We should not be astonished to find contradictions in the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Actually there are no contradictions. That is the meaning of His being supreme. Because He is all-powerful, He is not subject to the conditioned soul's arguments regarding His existence or nonexistence. He is pleased to protect His devotees by killing their enemies. He enjoys both the killing and the protecting.

   Such freedom from duality applies not only to the Lord but also to His devotees. In Vrndavana, the damsels of Vrajabhumi enjoy transcendental bliss in the company of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krsna, and they feel the same transcendental bliss in separation when Krsna and Balarama leave Vrndavana for Mathura. There is no question of material pains or pleasures for either the Supreme Personality of Godhead or His pure devotees, although they are sometimes superficially said to be distressed or happy. One who is atmarama is blissful in both ways.

   Nondevotees cannot understand the contradictions present in the Supreme Lord or His devotees. Therefore in Bhagavad-gita the Lord says, bhaktya mam abhijanati: the transcendental pastimes can be understood through devotional service; to nondevotees they are inconceivable. Acintyah khalu ye bhava na tams tarkena yojayet: the Supreme Lord and His form, name, pastimes and paraphernalia are inconceivable to nondevotees, and one should not try to understand such realities simply by logical arguments. They will not bring one to the right conclusion about the Absolute Truth.


                               TEXT 37




sama-visama-matinam matam anusarasi yatha rajju-khandah sarpadi-dhiyam.




   sama--equal or proper; visama--and unequal or mistaken; matinam--of those having intelligence; matam--conclusion; anusarasi--You follow; yatha--just as; rajju-khandah--a piece of rope; sarpa-adi--a snake, etc.; dhiyam--of those who perceive.




   A rope causes fear for a bewildered person who considers it a snake, but not for a person with proper intelligence who knows it to be only a rope. Similarly, You, as the Supersoul in everyone's heart, inspire fear or fearlessness according to one's intelligence, but in You there is no duality.




   In Bhagavad-gita (4.11) the Lord says, ye yatha mam prapadyante tams tathaiva bhajamy aham: "As one surrenders unto Me, I reward him accordingly." The Supreme Personality of Godhead is the reservoir of everything, including all knowledge, all truth and all contradictions. The example cited herein is very appropriate. A rope is one truth, but some mistake it for a snake, whereas others know it to be a rope. Similarly, devotees who know the Supreme Personality of Godhead do not see contradictions in Him, but nondevotees regard Him as the snakelike source of all fear. For example, when Nrsimhadeva appeared, Prahlada Maharaja saw the Lord as the supreme solace, whereas his father, a demon, saw Him as the ultimate death. As stated in Srimad-Bhagavatam (11.2.37), bhayam dvitiyabhinivesatah syat: fear results from being absorbed in duality. When one is in knowledge of duality, one knows both fear and bliss. The same Supreme Lord is a source of bliss to devotees and fear to nondevotees who have a poor fund of knowledge. God is one, but people understand the Absolute Truth from different angles of vision. The unintelligent see contradictions in Him, but sober devotees find no contradictions.


                               TEXT 38




sa eva hi punah sarva-vastuni vastu-svarupah sarvesvarah sakala-jagat-karana-karana-bhutah sarva-pratyag-atmatvat sarva-gunabhasopalaksita eka eva paryavasesitah.




   sah--He (the Supreme Personality of Godhead); eva--indeed; hi--certainly; punah--again; sarva-vastuni--in everything, material and spiritual; vastu-svarupah--the substance; sarva-isvarah--the controller of everything; sakala-jagat--of the whole universe; karana--of the causes; karana-bhutah--existing as the cause; sarva-pratyak-atmatvat--because of being the Supersoul of every living being, or being present in everything, even the atom; sarva-guna--of all the effects of the material modes of nature (such as intelligence and the senses); abhasa--by the manifestations; upalaksitah--perceived; ekah--alone; eva--indeed; paryavasesitah--left remaining.




   With deliberation, one will see that the Supreme Soul, although manifested in different ways, is actually the basic principle of everything. The total material energy is the cause of the material manifestation, but the material energy is caused by Him. Therefore He is the cause of all causes, the manifester of intelligence and the senses. He is perceived as the Supersoul of everything. Without Him, everything would be dead. You, as that Supersoul, the supreme controller, are the only one remaining.




   The words sarva-vastuni vastu-svarupah indicate that the Supreme Lord is the active principle of everything. As described in the Brahma-samhita (5.35):


               eko 'py asau racayitum jagad-anda-kotim

              yac-chaktir asti jagad-anda-caya yad-antah


                govindam adi-purusam tam aham bhajami


   "I worship the Personality of Godhead, Govinda, who enters the existence of every universe and every atom by one of His plenary portions and thus manifests His infinite energy throughout the material creation." By His one plenary portion as Paramatma, antaryami, the Lord is all-pervading throughout the unlimited universes. He is the pratyak, or antaryami, of all living entities. The Lord says in Bhagavad-gita (13.3), ksetrajnam capi mam viddhi sarva-ksetresu bharata: "O scion of Bharata, you should understand that I am also the knower in all bodies." Because the Lord is the Supersoul, He is the active principle of every living entity and even the atom (anda-ntara-stha-paramanu-cayantara-stham). He is the actual reality. According to various stages of intelligence, one realizes the presence of the Supreme in everything through the manifestations of His energy. The entire world is permeated by the three gunas, and one can understand His presence according to one's modes of material nature.


                               TEXT 39




atha ha vava tava mahimamrta-rasa-samudra-viprusa sakrd avalidhaya sva-manasi nisyandamananavarata-sukhena vismarita-drsta-sruta-visaya-sukha-lesabhasah parama-bhagavata ekantino bhagavati sarva-bhuta-priya-suhrdi sarvatmani nitaram nirantaram nirvrta-manasah katham u ha va ete madhumathana punah svartha-kusala hy atma-priya-suhrdah sadhavas tvac-caranambujanusevam visrjanti na yatra punar ayam samsara-paryavartah.




   atha ha--therefore; vava--indeed; tava--Your; mahima--of glories; amrta--of the nectar; rasa--of the mellow; samudra--of the ocean; viprusa--by a drop; sakrt--only once; avalidhaya--tasted; sva-manasi--in his mind; nisyandamana--flowing; anavarata--continuously; sukhena--by the transcendental bliss; vismarita--forgotten; drsta--from material sight; sruta--and sound; visaya-sukha--of the material happiness; lesa-abhasah--the dim reflection of a tiny portion; parama-bhagavatah--great, exalted devotees; ekantinah--who have faith only in the Supreme Lord and nothing else; bhagavati--in the Supreme Personality of Godhead; sarva-bhuta--to all living entities; priya--who is dearmost; suhrdi--the friend; sarva-atmani--the Supersoul of all; nitaram--completely; nirantaram--continuously; nirvrta--with happiness; manasah--those whose minds; katham--how; u ha--then; va--or; ete--these; madhu-mathana--O killer of the Madhu demon; punah--again; sva-artha-kusalah--who are expert in the interest of life; hi--indeed; atma-priya-suhrdah--who have accepted You as the Supersoul, dearmost lover and friend; sadhavah--the devotees; tvat-carana-ambuja-anusevam--service to the lotus feet of Your Lordship; visrjanti--can give up; na--not; yatra--wherein; punah--again; ayam--this; samsara-paryavartah--repetition of birth and death within the material world.




   Therefore, O killer of the Madhu demon, incessant transcendental bliss flows in the minds of those who have even once tasted but a drop of the nectar from the ocean of Your glories. Such exalted devotees forget the tiny reflection of so-called material happiness produced from the material senses of sight and sound. Free from all desires, such devotees are the real friends of all living entities. Offering their minds unto You and enjoying transcendental bliss, they are expert in achieving the real goal of life. O Lord, You are the soul and dear friend of such devotees, who never need return to this material world. How could they give up engagement in Your devotional service?




   Although nondevotees, because of their meager knowledge and speculative habits, cannot understand the real nature of the Lord, a devotee who has once tasted the nectar from the Lord's lotus feet can realize what transcendental pleasure there is in the Lord's devotional service. A devotee knows that simply by rendering service to the Lord, he serves everyone. Therefore devotees are real friends to all living entities. Only a pure devotee can preach the glories of the Lord for the benefit of all conditioned souls.


                               TEXT 40




tri-bhuvanatma-bhavana trivikrama tri-nayana tri-loka-manoharanubhava tavaiva vibhutayo ditija-danujadayas capi tesam upakrama-samayo 'yam iti svatma-mayaya sura-nara-mrga-misrita-jalacarakrtibhir yathaparadham dandam danda-dhara dadhartha evam enam api bhagavan jahi tvastram uta yadi manyase.




   tri-bhuvana-atma-bhavana--O Lord, You are the shelter of the three worlds because You are the Supersoul of the three worlds; tri-vikrama--O Lord, who assumes the form of Vamana, Your power and opulence are distributed throughout the three worlds; tri-nayana--O maintainer and seer of the three worlds; tri-loka-manohara-anubhava--O You who are perceived as the most beautiful within the three worlds; tava--of You; eva--certainly; vibhutayah--the expansions of energy; diti-ja-danu-ja-adayah--the demoniac sons of Diti, and the Danavas, another type of demon; ca--and; api--also (the human beings); tesam--of all of them; upakrama-samayah--the time of enterprise; ayam--this; iti--thus; sva-atma-mayaya--by Your own energy; sura-nara-mrga-misrita-jalacara-akrtibhih--with different forms like those of the demigods, human beings, animals, mixtures and aquatics (the incarnations Vamana, Lord Ramacandra, Krsna, Varaha, Hayagriva, Nrsimha, Matsya and Kurma); yatha-aparadham--according to their offenses; dandam--punishment; danda-dhara--O supreme chastiser; dadhartha--You awarded; evam--thus; enam--this one (Vrtrasura); api--also; bhagavan--O Supreme Personality of Godhead; jahi--kill; tvastram--the son of Tvasta; uta--indeed; yadi manyase--if You think it proper.




   O Lord, O personified three worlds, father of the three worlds! O strength of the three worlds, in the form of the Vamana incarnation! O three-eyed form of Nrsimhadeva! O most beautiful person within the three worlds! Everything and everyone, including human beings and even the Daitya demons and the Danavas, is but an expansion of Your energy. O supremely powerful one, You have always appeared in Your forms as the various incarnations to punish the demons as soon as they become very powerful. You appear as Lord Vamanadeva, Lord Rama and Lord Krsna. You appear sometimes as an animal like Lord Boar, sometimes a mixed incarnation like Lord Nrsimhadeva and Lord Hayagriva, and sometimes an aquatic like Lord Fish and Lord Tortoise. Assuming such various forms, You have always punished the demons and Danavas. We therefore pray that Your Lordship appear today as another incarnation, if You so desire, to kill the great demon Vrtrasura.




   There are two kinds of devotees, known as sakama and akama. Pure devotees are akama, whereas devotees in the upper planetary systems, such as the demigods, are called sakama because they still want to enjoy material opulence. Because of their pious activities, the sakama devotees are promoted to the higher planetary systems, but at heart they still desire to lord it over the material resources. The sakama devotees are sometimes disturbed by the demons and Raksasas, but the Lord is so kind that He always saves them by appearing as an incarnation. The Lord's incarnations are so powerful that Lord Vamanadeva covered the entire universe with two steps and therefore had no place for His third step. The Lord is called Trivikrama because He showed His strength by delivering the entire universe with merely three steps.

   The difference between sakama and akama devotees is that when sakama devotees, like the demigods, fall into difficulty, they approach the Supreme Personality of Godhead for relief, whereas akama devotees, even in the greatest danger, never disturb the Lord for material benefits. Even if an akama devotee is suffering, he thinks this is due to his past impious activities and agrees to suffer the consequences. He never disturbs the Lord. Sakama devotees immediately pray to the Lord as soon as they are in difficulty, but they are regarded as pious because they consider themselves fully dependent on the mercy of the Lord. As stated in Srimad-Bhagavatam (10.14.8):


                    tat te 'nukampam susamiksamano

                    bhunjana evatma-krtam vipakam

                 hrd-vag-vapurbhir vidadhan namas te

                  jiveta yo mukti-pade sa daya-bhak


   Even while suffering in the midst of difficulties, devotees simply offer their prayers and service more enthusiastically. In this way they become firmly fixed in devotional service and eligible to return home, back to Godhead, without a doubt. Sakama devotees, of course, achieve from the Lord the results they desire from their prayers, but they do not immediately become fit to return to Godhead. It is to be noted herein that Lord Visnu, in His various incarnations, is always the protector of His devotees. Srila Madhvacarya says: vividham bhava-patratvat sarve visnor vibhutayah. Krsna is the original Personality of Godhead (krsnas tu bhagavan svayam). All the other incarnations proceed from Lord Visnu.


                               TEXT 41




asmakam tavakanam tatatata natanam hare tava carana-nalina-yugala-dhyananubaddha-hrdaya-nigadanam sva-linga-vivaranenatmasat-krtanam anukampanuranjita-visada-rucira-sisira-smitavalokena vigalita-madhura-mukha-rasamrta-kalaya cantas tapam anagharhasi samayitum.




   asmakam--of us; tavakanam--who are wholly and solely dependent upon You; tata-tata--O grandfather, father of the father; natanam--who are fully surrendered unto You; hare--O Lord Hari; tava--Your; carana--on the feet; nalina-yugala--like two blue lotus flowers; dhyana--by meditation; anubaddha--bound; hrdaya--in the heart; nigadanam--whose chains; sva-linga-vivaranena--by manifesting Your own form; atmasat-krtanam--of those You have accepted as Your own; anukampa--by compassion; anuranjita--being colored; visada--bright; rucira--very pleasing; sisira--cool; smita--with a smile; avalokena--by Your glance; vigalita--melted with compassion; madhura-mukha-rasa--of the very sweet words from Your mouth; amrta-kalaya--by the drops of nectar; ca--and; antah--within the cores of our hearts; tapam--the great pain; anagha--O supreme pure; arhasi--You deserve; samayitum--to curb.




   O supreme protector, O grandfather, O supreme pure, O Lord! We are all surrendered souls at Your lotus feet. Indeed, our minds are bound to Your lotus feet in meditation by chains of love. Now please manifest Your incarnation. Accepting us as Your own eternal servants and devotees, be pleased with us and sympathetic toward us. By Your love-filled glance, with its cool and pleasing smile of sympathy, and by the sweet, nectarean words emanating from Your beautiful face, free us from the anxiety caused by this Vrtrasura, who always pains the cores of our hearts.




   Lord Brahma is considered the father of the demigods, but Krsna, or Lord Visnu, is the father of Brahma because Brahma took birth from the lotus flower growing from the Lord's abdomen.


                               TEXT 42




atha bhagavams tavasmabhir akhila-jagad-utpatti-sthiti-laya-nimittayamana-divya-maya-vinodasya sakala-jiva-nikayanam antar-hrdayesu bahir api ca brahma-pratyag-atma-svarupena pradhana-rupena ca yatha-desa-kala-dehavasthana-visesam tad-upadanopalambhakatayanubhavatah sarva-pratyaya-saksina akasa-sarirasya saksat para-brahmanah paramatmanah kiyan iha vartha-viseso vijnapaniyah syad visphulingadibhir iva hiranya-retasah.




   atha--therefore; bhagavan--O Lord; tava--of You; asmabhih--by us; akhila--all; jagat--of the material world; utpatti--of the creation; sthiti--maintenance; laya--and annihilation; nimittayamana--being the cause; divya-maya--with the spiritual energy; vinodasya--of You, who amuse Yourself; sakala--all; jiva-nikayanam--of the hordes of living entities; antah-hrdayesu--in the cores of the hearts; bahih api--externally also; ca--and; brahma--of impersonal Brahman, or the Absolute Truth; pratyak-atma--of the Supersoul; sva-rupena--by Your forms; pradhana-rupena--by Your form as the external ingredients; ca--also; yatha--according to; desa-kala-deha-avasthana--of country, time, body and position; visesam--the particulars; tat--of them; upadana--of the material causes; upalambhakataya--by being the exhibitor; anubhavatah--witnessing; sarva-pratyaya-saksinah--the witness of all different activities; akasa-sarirasya--the Supersoul of the whole universe; saksat--directly; para-brahmanah--the Supreme Absolute Truth; paramatmanah--the Supersoul; kiyan--of what extent; iha--herein; va--or; artha-visesah--special necessity; vijnapaniyah--to be informed; syat--may be; visphulinga-adibhih--by the sparks of the fire; iva--like; hiranya-retasah--to the original fire.




   O Lord, as the small sparks of a fire cannot possibly perform the actions of the whole fire, we sparks of Your Lordship cannot inform You of the necessities of our lives. You are the complete whole. Therefore, of what do we need to inform You? You know everything because You are the original cause of the cosmic manifestation, the maintainer and the annihilator of the entire universal creation. You always engage in Your pastimes with Your spiritual and material energies, for You are the controller of all these varied energies. You exist within all living entities, within the cosmic manifestation, and also beyond them. You exist internally as Parabrahman and externally as the ingredients of the material creation. Therefore, although manifested in various stages, at different times and places, and in various bodies, You, the Personality of Godhead, are the original cause of all causes. Indeed, You are the original element. You are the witness of all activities, but because You are as great as the sky, You are never touched by any of them. You are the witness of everything as Parabrahman and Paramatma. O Supreme Personality of Godhead, nothing is unknown to You.




   The Absolute Truth exists in three phases of spiritual understanding--Brahman, Paramatma and Bhagavan (brahmeti paramatmeti bhagavan iti sabdyate). Bhagavan, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is the cause of Brahman and Paramatma. Brahman, the impersonal Absolute Truth, is all-pervading, and Paramatma is locally situated in everyone's heart, but Bhagavan, who is worshipable by the devotees. is the original cause of all causes. A pure devotee is aware that since nothing is unknown to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, He need not be informed of a devotee's conveniences and inconveniences. A pure devotee knows that there is no need to ask the Absolute Truth for any material necessities. Therefore, while informing the Supreme Lord about their distress in being attacked by Vrtrasura, the demigods apologized for offering prayers for their safety. A neophyte devotee, of course, approaches the Supreme Lord for relief from distress or poverty, or for speculative knowledge of the Lord. Bhagavad-gita (7.16) mentions four kinds of pious men who begin devotional service to the Lord--one who is distressed (arta), one in need of money (artharthi), one who is inquisitive (jijnasu) and one who is searching for the Absolute Truth (jnani). A pure devotee, however, knows that since the Lord is omnipresent and omniscient, there is no need to offer prayers or worship Him for one's personal benefit. A pure devotee always engages in the service of the Lord without demanding anything. The Lord is present everywhere and knows the necessities of His devotees; consequently there is no need to disturb Him by asking Him for material benefits.


                               TEXT 43




ata eva svayam tad upakalpayasmakam bhagavatah parama-guros tava carana-sata-palasac-chayam vividha-vrjina-samsara-parisramopasamanim upasrtanam vayam yat-kamenopasaditah.




   ata eva--therefore; svayam--Yourself; tat--that; upakalpaya--please arrange; asmakam--of us; bhagavatah--of the Supreme Personality of Godhead; parama-guroh--the supreme spiritual master; tava--of You; carana--of the feet; sata-palasat--like lotus flowers with hundreds of petals; chayam--the shade; vividha--various; vrjina--with dangerous positions; samsara--of this conditioned life; parisrama--the pain; upasamanim--relieving; upasrtanam--the devotees who have taken shelter at Your lotus feet; vayam--we; yat--for which; kamena--by the desires; upasaditah--caused to come near (the shelter of Your lotus feet).




   Dear Lord, You are omniscient, and therefore You know very well why we have taken shelter at Your lotus feet, which provide shade that gives relief from all material disturbances. Since You are the supreme spiritual master and You know everything, we have sought shelter of Your lotus feet for instruction. Please give us relief by counteracting our present distress. Your lotus feet are the only shelter for a fully surrendered devotee and are the only means for subduing all the tribulations of this material world.




   One need only seek shelter of the shade of the Lord's lotus feet. Then all the material tribulations that disturb him will be subdued, just as when one comes under the shadow of a big tree, the disturbances caused by the heat of the scorching sun are immediately mitigated, without one's asking for relief. Therefore the whole concern of the conditioned soul should be the lotus feet of the Lord. The conditioned soul suffering from various tribulations because of existing in this material world can be relieved only when he seeks shelter at the Lord's lotus feet.


                               TEXT 44




                        atho isa jahi tvastram

                       grasantam bhuvana-trayam

                       grastani yena nah krsna

                       tejamsy astrayudhani ca




   atho--therefore; isa--O supreme controller; jahi--kill; tvastram--the demon Vrtrasura, son of Tvasta; grasantam--who is devouring; bhuvana-trayam--the three worlds; grastani--devoured; yena--by whom; nah--our; krsna--O Lord Krsna; tejamsi--all strength and prowess; astra--arrows; ayudhani--and other weapons; ca--also.




   Therefore, O Lord, O supreme controller, O Lord Krsna, please annihilate this dangerous demon Vrtrasura, Tvasta's son, who has already swallowed all our weapons, our paraphernalia for fighting, and our strength and influence.




   The Lord says in Bhagavad-gita (7.15-16):


                       na mam duskrtino mudhah

                        prapadyante naradhamah


                        asuram bhavam asritah


                       catur-vidha bhajante mam

                        janah sukrtino 'rjuna

                       arto jijnasur artharthi

                        jnani ca bharatarsabha


   "Those miscreants who are grossly foolish, lowest among mankind, whose knowledge is stolen by illusion, and who partake of the atheistic nature of demons, do not surrender unto Me. O best among the Bharatas [Arjuna], four kinds of pious men render devotional service unto Me--the distressed, the desirer of wealth, the inquisitive, and he who is searching for knowledge of the Absolute."

   The four classes of neophyte devotees who approach the Supreme Personality of Godhead to offer devotional service because of material motives are not pure devotees, but the advantage for such materialistic devotees is that they sometimes give up their material desires and become pure. When the demigods are utterly helpless, they approach the Supreme Personality of Godhead in grief and with tears in their eyes, praying to the Lord, and thus they become almost pure devotees, free from material desires. Admitting that they have forgotten pure devotional service because of extensive material opportunities, they fully surrender to the Lord, leaving to His consideration whether to maintain them or annihilate them. Such surrender is necessary. Bhaktivinoda Thakura sings, marabi rakhabi--yo iccha tohara: "O Lord, I fully surrender unto Your lotus feet. Now, as You desire, You may protect me or annihilate me. You have the full right to do either."


                               TEXT 45




                  hamsaya dahra-nilayaya niriksakaya

                  krsnaya mrsta-yasase nirupakramaya

              sat-sangrahaya bhava-pantha-nijasramaptav

                 ante parista-gataye haraye namas te




   hamsaya--unto the most exalted and pure (pavitram paramam, the supreme pure); dahra--in the core of the heart; nilayaya--whose abode; niriksakaya--supervising the activities of the individual soul; krsnaya--unto the Supersoul, who is a partial manifestation of Krsna; mrsta-yasase--whose reputation is very bright; nirupakramaya--who has no beginning; sat-sangrahaya--understood only by pure devotees; bhava-pantha-nija-asrama-aptau--being obtainment of the shelter of Krsna for persons within this material world; ante--at the ultimate end; parista-gataye--unto Him who is the ultimate goal, the highest success of life; haraye--unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead; namah--respectful obeisances; te--unto You.




   O Lord, O supreme pure, You live within the core of everyone's heart and observe all the desires and activities of the conditioned souls. O Supreme Personality of Godhead known as Lord Krsna, Your reputation is bright and illuminating. You have no beginning, for You are the beginning of everything. This is understood by pure devotees because You are easily accessible to the pure and truthful. When the conditioned souls are liberated and sheltered at Your lotus feet after roving throughout the material world for many millions of years, they attain the highest success of life. Therefore, O Lord, O Supreme Personality of Godhead, we offer our respectful obeisances at Your lotus feet.




   The demigods certainly wanted Lord Visnu to relieve their anxiety, but now they directly approach Lord Krsna, for although there is no difference between Lord Krsna and Lord Visnu, Krsna descends to this planet in His Vasudeva feature for the purpose of paritranaya sadhunam vinasaya ca duskrtam--protecting His devotees and annihilating the miscreants. Demons, or atheists, always disturb the demigods, or devotees, and therefore Krsna descends to punish the atheists and demons and fulfill the desire of His devotees. Krsna, being the original cause of everything, is the Supreme Person, above even Visnu and Narayana, although there is no difference between these different forms of the Lord. As explained in Brahma-samhita (5.46):


                diparcir eva hi dasantaram abhyupetya

                  dipayate vivrta-hetu-samana-dharma

                yas tadrg eva hi ca visnutaya vibhati

                govindam adi-purusam tam aham bhajami


   Krsna expands Himself as Visnu the way a bright candle kindles another. Although there is no difference between the power of one candle and another, Krsna is compared to the original candle.

   The word mrsta-yasase is significant herein because Krsna is always famous for relieving His devotee from danger. A devotee who has sacrificed everything for the service of Krsna and whose only source of relief is the Lord is known as akincana.

   As expressed in the prayers offered by Queen Kunti, the Lord is akincana-vitta, the property of such a devotee. Those who are liberated from the bondage of conditioned life are elevated to the spiritual world, where they achieve five kinds of liberation--sayujya, salokya, sarupya, sarsti and samipya. They personally associate with the Lord in five mellows--santa, dasya, sakhya, vatsalya and madhurya. These rasas are all emanations from Krsna. As described by Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura, the original mellow, adi-rasa, is conjugal love. Krsna is the origin of pure and spiritual conjugal love.


                               TEXT 46




                            sri-suka uvaca

                         athaivam idito rajan

                       sadaram tri-dasair harih

                       svam upasthanam akarnya

                        praha tan abhinanditah




   sri-sukah uvaca--Sri Sukadeva Gosvami said; atha--thereafter; evam--in this way; iditah--being worshiped and offered obeisances; rajan--O King; sa-adaram--with proper respect; tri-dasaih--by all the demigods from the higher planetary systems; harih--the Supreme Personality of Godhead; svam upasthanam--their prayer glorifying Him; akarnya--hearing; praha--replied; tan--unto them (the demigods); abhinanditah--being pleased.




   Sri Sukadeva Gosvami continued: O King Pariksit, when the demigods offered the Lord their sincere prayers in this way, the Lord listened by His causeless mercy. Being pleased, He then replied to the demigods.


                               TEXT 47




                          sri-bhagavan uvaca

                     prito 'ham vah sura-srestha


                      atmaisvarya-smrtih pumsam

                       bhaktis caiva yaya mayi




   sri-bhagavan uvaca--the Supreme Personality of Godhead said; pritah--pleased; aham--I; vah--of you; sura-sresthah--O best of the demigods; mat-upasthana-vidyaya--by the highly advanced knowledge and prayers offered unto Me; atma-aisvarya-smrtih--remembrance of the exalted transcendental position of Me, the Supreme Personality of Godhead; pumsam--of men; bhaktih--devotional service; ca--and; eva--certainly; yaya--by which; mayi--unto Me.




   The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: O beloved demigods, you have offered your prayers to Me with great knowledge, and I am certainly most pleased with you. A person is liberated by such knowledge, and thus he remembers My exalted position, which is above the conditions of material life. Such a devotee is fully purified by offering prayers in full knowledge. This is the source of devotional service to Me.




   Another name of the Supreme Personality of Godhead is Uttamasloka, which means that He is offered prayers with selected verses. Bhakti means sravanam kirtanam visnoh, chanting and hearing about Lord Visnu. Impersonalists cannot be purified, for they do not offer personal prayers to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Even though they sometimes offer prayers, the prayers are not directed toward the Supreme Person. Impersonalists sometimes show their incomplete knowledge by addressing the Lord as being nameless. They always offer prayers indirectly, saying, "You are this, You are that," but they do not know to whom they are praying. A devotee, however, always offers personal prayers. A devotee says, govindam adi-purusam tam aham bhajami: "I offer my respectful obeisances unto Govinda, unto Krsna." That is the way to offer prayers. If one continues to offer such personal prayers to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he is eligible to become a pure devotee and return home, back to Godhead.


                               TEXT 48




                        kim durapam mayi prite

                        tathapi vibudharsabhah

                       mayy ekanta-matir nanyan

                      matto vanchati tattva-vit




   kim--what; durapam--difficult to obtain; mayi--when 1; prite--satisfied; tathapi--still; vibudha-rsabhah--O best of the intelligent demigods; mayi--in Me; ekanta--exclusively fixed; matih--whose attention; na anyat--not anything other; mattah--than Me; vanchati--desires; tattva-vit--one who knows the truth.




   O best of the intelligent demigods, although it is true that nothing is difficult for one to obtain when I am pleased with him, a pure devotee, whose mind is exclusively fixed upon Me, does not ask Me for anything but the opportunity to engage in devotional service.




   When the demigods finished offering their prayers, they anxiously waited for their enemy Vrtrasura to be killed. This means that the demigods are not pure devotees. Although without difficulty one can get anything he desires if the Lord is pleased, the demigods aspire for material profit by pleasing the Lord. The Lord wanted the demigods to pray for unalloyed devotional service, but instead they prayed for an opportunity to kill their enemy. This is the difference between a pure devotee and a devotee on the material platform. Indirectly, the Lord regretted that the demigods did not ask for pure devotional service.


                               TEXT 49




                        na veda krpanah sreya

                        atmano guna-vastu-drk

                      tasya tan icchato yacched

                       yadi so 'pi tatha-vidhah




   na--not; veda--knows; krpanah--a miserly living entity; sreyah--the ultimate necessity; atmanah--of the soul; guna-vastu-drk--who is attracted by the creation of the modes of material nature; tasya--of him; tan--things created by the material energy; icchatah--desiring; yacchet--one bestows; yadi--if; sah api--he also; tatha-vidhah--of the kind (a foolish krpana who does not know his real self-interest).




   Those who think material assets to be everything or to be the ultimate goal of life are called misers [krpanas]. They do not know the ultimate necessity of the soul. Moreover, if one awards that which is desired by such fools, he must also be considered foolish.




   There are two classes of men--namely the krpana and the brahmana. A brahmana is one who knows Brahman, the Absolute Truth, and who thus knows his real interest. A krpana, however, is one who has a material, bodily concept of life. Not knowing how to utilize his human or demigod life, a krpana is attracted by things created by the material modes of nature. The krpanas, who always desire material benefits, are foolish, whereas brahmanas, who always desire spiritual benefits, are intelligent. If a krpana, not knowing his self-interest, foolishly asks for something material, one who awards it to him is also foolish. Krsna, however, is not a foolish person; He is supremely intelligent. If someone comes to Krsna asking for material benefits, Krsna does not award him the material things he desires. Instead, the Lord gives him intelligence so that he will forget his material desires and become attached to the Lord's lotus feet. In such cases, although the krpana offers prayers to Lord Krsna for material things, the Lord takes away whatever material possessions the krpana has and gives him the sense to become a devotee. As stated by the Lord in the Caitanya-caritamrta (Madhya 22.39):


              ami--vijna, ei murkhe 'visaya' kene diba?

                sva-caranamrta diya 'visaya' bhulaiba


   "Since I am very intelligent, why should I give this fool material prosperity? Instead I shall induce him to take the nectar of the shelter of My lotus feet and make him forget illusory material enjoyment." If one sincerely prays to God for material possessions in exchange for devotional service, the Lord, who is not foolish like such an unintelligent devotee, shows him special favor by taking away whatever material possessions he has and gradually giving him the intelligence to be satisfied only by rendering service to His lotus feet. Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura comments in this regard that if a foolish child requests his mother to give him poison, the mother, being intelligent, will certainly not give him poison, even though he requests it. A materialist does not know that to accept material possessions means to accept poison, or the repetition of birth and death. An intelligent person, a brahmana, aspires for liberation from material bondage. That is the real self-interest of a human being.


                               TEXT 50




                      svayam nihsreyasam vidvan

                       na vakty ajnaya karma hi

                       na rati rogino 'pathyam

                       vanchato 'pi bhisaktamah




   svayam--personally; nihsreyasam--the supreme goal of life, namely the means of obtaining ecstatic love for the Supreme Personality of Godhead; vit-van--one who is accomplished in devotional service; na--not; vakti--teaches; ajnaya--unto a foolish person not conversant with the ultimate goal of life; karma--fruitive activities; hi--indeed; na--not; rati--administers; roginah--unto the patient; apathyam--something unconsumable; vanchatah--desiring; api--although; bhisak-tamah--an experienced physician.




   A pure devotee who is fully accomplished in the science of devotional service will never instruct a foolish person to engage in fruitive activities for material enjoyment, not to speak of helping him in such activities. Such a devotee is like an experienced physician, who never encourages a patient to eat food injurious to his health, even if the patient desires it.




   Here is the difference between the benedictions awarded by the demigods and those awarded by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Visnu. Devotees of the demigods ask for benedictions simply for sense gratification, and therefore they have been described in Bhagavad-gita (7.20) as bereft of intelligence.


                     kamais tais tair hrta-jnanah

                       prapadyante 'nya-devatah

                       tam tam niyamam asthaya

                        prakrtya niyatah svaya


   "Those whose minds are distorted by material desires surrender unto demigods and follow the particular rules and regulations of worship according to their own natures."

   Conditioned souls are generally bereft of intelligence because of profound desires for sense gratification. They do not know what benedictions to ask. Therefore nondevotees are advised in the sastras to worship various demigods to achieve material benefits. For example, if one wants a beautiful wife, he is advised to worship Uma, or goddess Durga. If one wants to be cured of a disease, he is advised to worship the sun-god. All requests for benedictions from the demigods, however, are due to material lust. The benedictions will be finished at the end of the cosmic manifestation, along with those who bestow them. If one approaches Lord Visnu for benedictions, the Lord will give him a benediction that will help him return home, back to Godhead. This is also confirmed by the Lord Himself in Bhagavad-gita (10.10):


                        tesam satata-yuktanam

                       bhajatam priti-purvakam

                       dadami buddhi-yogam tam

                         yena mam upayanti te


   Lord Visnu, or Lord Krsna, instructs a devotee who constantly engages in His service how to approach Him at the end of his material body. The Lord says in Bhagavad-gita (4.9):


                       janma karma ca me divyam

                       evam yo vetti tattvatah

                      tyaktva deham punar janma

                       naiti mam eti so 'rjuna


   "One who knows the transcendental nature of My appearance and activities, does not, upon leaving the body, take his birth again in this material world, but attains My eternal abode, O Arjuna." This is the benediction of Lord Visnu, Krsna. After giving up his body, a devotee returns home, back to Godhead.

   A devotee may foolishly ask for material benedictions, but Lord Krsna does not give him such benedictions, despite the devotee's prayers. Therefore people who are very attached to material life do not generally become devotees of Krsna or Visnu. Instead they become devotees of the demigods (kamais tais tair hrta jnanah prapadyante 'nya-devatah). The benedictions of the demigods, however, are condemned in Bhagavad-gita. Antavat tu phalam tesam tad bhavaty alpa-medhasam: "Men of small intelligence worship the demigods, and their fruits are limited and temporary." A non-Vaisnava, one who is not engaged in the service of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is considered a fool with a small quantity of brain substance.


                               TEXT 51




                       maghavan yata bhadram vo

                       dadhyancam rsi-sattamam


                        gatram yacata ma ciram




   maghavan--O Indra; yata--go; bhadram--good fortune; vah--to all of you; dadhyancam--to Dadhyanca; rsi-sat-tamam--the most exalted saintly person; vidya--of education; vrata--vow; tapah--and austerities; saram--the essence; gatram--his body; yacata--ask for; ma ciram--without delay.




   O Maghavan [Indra], all good fortune unto you. I advise you to approach the exalted saint Dadhyanca [Dadhici]. He has become very accomplished in knowledge, vows and austerities, and his body is very strong. Go ask him for his body without delay.




   Everyone in this material world, from Lord Brahma down to the ant, is eager to keep his body comfortable. A pure devotee may also be comfortable, but he is not eager for such a benediction. Since Maghavan, the King of heaven, still aspired for a comfortable bodily situation, Lord Visnu advised him to ask Dadhyanca for his body, which was very strong due to his knowledge, vows and austerity.


                               TEXT 52




                       sa va adhigato dadhyann

                      asvibhyam brahma niskalam

                         yad va asvasiro nama

                        tayor amaratam vyadhat




   sah--he; va--certainly; adhigatah--having obtained; dadhyan--Dadhyanca; asvibhyam--to the two Asvini-kumaras; brahma--spiritual knowledge; niskalam--pure; yat va--by which; asvasirah--Asvasira; nama--named; tayoh--of the two; amaratam--liberation in one's life; vyadhat--awarded.




   That saintly Dadhyanca, who is also known as Dadhici, personally assimilated the spiritual science and then delivered it to the Asvini-kumaras. It is said that Dadhyanca gave them mantras through the head of a horse. Therefore the mantras are called Asvasira. After obtaining the mantras of spiritual science from Dadhici, the Asvini-kumaras became jivan-mukta, liberated even in this life.




   The following story is narrated by many acaryas in their commentaries:


nisamyatharvanam daksam pravargya-brahmavidyayoh; dadhyancam samupagamya tam ucatur athasvinau; bhagavan dehi nau vidyam iti srutva sa cabravit; karmany avasthito 'dyaham pascad vaksyami gacchatam; tayor nirgatayor eva sakra agatya tam munim; uvaca bhisajor vidyam ma vadir asvinor mune; yadi mad-vakyam ullanghya bravisi sahasaiva te; siras-chindyam na sandeha ity uktva sa yayau harih; indre gate tathabhyetya nasatyav ucatur dvijam; tan-mukhad indra-gaditam srutva tav ucatuh punah; avam tava siras chittva purvam asvasya mastakam; sandhasyavas tato bruhi tena vidyam ca nau dvija; tasminn indrena sanchinne punah sandhaya mastakam; nijam te daksinam dattva gamisyavo yathagatam; etac chrutva tadovaca dadhyann atharvanas tayoh pravargyam brahma-vidyam ca sat-krto 'satya-sankitah.


   The great saint Dadhici had perfect knowledge of how to perform fruitive activities, and he had advanced spiritual knowledge as well. Knowing this, the Asvini-kumaras once approached him and begged him to instruct them in spiritual science (brahma-vidya). Dadhici Muni replied, "I am now engaged in arranging sacrifices for fruitive activities. Come back some time later." When the Asvini-kumaras left, Indra, the King of heaven, approached Dadhici and said, "My dear Muni, the Asvini-kumaras are only physicians. Please do not instruct them in spiritual science. If you impart the spiritual science to them despite my warning, I shall punish you by cutting off your head." After warning Dadhici in this way, Indra returned to heaven. The Asvini-kumaras, who understood Indra's desires, returned and begged Dadhici for brahma-vidya. When the great saint Dadhici informed them of Indra's threat, the Asvini-kumaras replied, "Let us first cut off your head and replace it with the head of a horse. You can instruct brahma-vidya through the horse's head, and when Indra returns and cuts off that head, we shall reward you and restore your original head." Since Dadhici had promised to impart brahma-vidya to the Asvini-kumaras, he agreed to their proposal. Therefore, because Dadhici imparted brahma-vidya through the mouth of a horse, this brahma-vidya is also known as Asvasira.


                               TEXT 53




                     dadhyann atharvanas tvastre

                       varmabhedyam mad-atmakam

                        visvarupaya yat pradat

                     tvasta yat tvam adhas tatah




   dadhyan--Dadhyanca; atharvanah--the son of Atharva; tvastre--unto Tvasta; varma--the protective covering known as Narayana-kavaca; abhedyam--invincible; mat-atmakam--consisting of Myself; visvarupaya--unto Visvarupa; yat--which; pradat--delivered; tvasta--Tvasta; yat--which; tvam--you; adhah--received; tatah--from him.




   Dadhyanca's invincible protective covering known as the Narayana-kavaca was given to Tvasta, who delivered it to his son Visvarupa, from whom you have received it. Because of this Narayana-kavaca, Dadhici's body is now very strong. You should therefore beg him for his body.


                               TEXT 54




                     yusmabhyam yacito 'svibhyam

                      dharma-jno 'ngani dasyati

                      tatas tair ayudha-srestho


                        yena vrtra-siro harta





   yusmabhyam--for all of you; yacitah--being asked; asvibhyam--by the Asvini-kumaras; dharma-jnah--Dadhici, who knows the principles of religion; angani--his limbs; dasyati--will give; tatah--after that; taih--by those bones; ayudha--of weapons; sresthah--the most powerful (the thunderbolt); visvakarma-vinirmitah--manufactured by Visvakarma; yena--by which; vrtra-sirah--the head of Vrtrasura; harta--will be taken away; mat-tejah--by My strength; upabrmhitah--increased.




   When the Asvini-kumaras beg for Dadhyanca's body on your behalf, he will surely give it because of affection. Do not doubt this, for Dadhyanca is very experienced in religious understanding. When Dadhyanca awards you his body, Visvakarma will prepare a thunderbolt from his bones. This thunderbolt will certainly kill Vrtrasura because it will be invested with My power.


                               TEXT 55




                        tasmin vinihate yuyam


                     bhuyah prapsyatha bhadram vo

                       na himsanti ca mat-paran




   tasmin--when he (Vrtrasura); vinihate--is killed; yuyam--all of you; tejah--power; astra--arrows; ayudha--other weapons; sampadah--and opulence; bhuyah--again; prapsyatha--will obtain; bhadram--all good fortune; vah--unto you; na--not; himsanti--hurt; ca--also; mat-paran--My devotees.




   When Vrtrasura is killed because of My spiritual strength, you will regain your strength, weapons and wealth. Thus there will be all good fortune for all of you. Although Vrtrasura can destroy all the three worlds, do not fear that he will harm you. He is also a devotee and will never be envious of you.




   A devotee of the Lord is never envious of anyone, what to speak of other devotees. As revealed later, Vrtrasura was also a devotee. Therefore be was not expected to be envious of the demigods. Indeed, of his own accord, he would try to benefit the demigods. A devotee does not hesitate to give up his own body for a better cause. Canakya Pandita said, san-nimitte varam tyago vinase niyate sati. After all, all one's material possessions, including his body, will be destroyed in due course of time. Therefore if the body and other possessions can be utilized for a better cause, a devotee never hesitates to give up even his own body. Because Lord Visnu wanted to save the demigods, Vrtrasura, even though able to swallow the three worlds, would agree to be killed by the demigods. For a devotee there is no difference between living and dying because in this life a devotee engages in devotional service, and after giving up his body, he engages in the same service in the spiritual world. His devotional service is never hindered.


Thus end the Bhaktivedanta purports to the Ninth Chapter, Sixth Canto, of the Srimad-Bhagavatam,  entitled "Appearance of the Demon Vrtrasura."

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