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Godhead is light. Nescience is darkness. Where there is Godhead there is no nescience.

") JA"


In San Diego, California, and around the world...



Nearing the end of its arduous journey from Cal- established ISKCON centers {l ike the one above in
cutta to New York ten years ago, the cargo ship San Diego) in over seventy major cities throughout
ja/aduta docked briefly in Boston. One of the few the world. His message is simple and clear: "Chant
passengers on board was His Divine Grace A. C. Hare Kr~l)a, and your li fe will be sublime." The Hare
Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, who at the age of Kr~ l)a mantra is a chant o r prayer requesting the
sixty-nine was making his first journey outside of In- Supreme Lo rd to engage us in His service.
dia. His mission, given him by his spiritual master, The disciples of SrTia Prabhupada, who have taken
was to teach the science of Kr~l)a consciousness to his advice and experienced the pleasure of chanting
the people of the Western world. When he stepped Hare Kr~l)a and serving the Lord, are naturally eager
off the boat, SrTia Prabhupada noticed how mate- to express their gratitude to him. They'll do this for-
rially incli ned the people of the W est were. He saw mally on August 31, his birthday anniversary, wh ich
what a difficult task he would have, and he prayed is called Vyasa-puja. By a wonderful coi ncidence,
to Lord Km1a for help. A year later, in a humble Vyasa-puja falls on the day following Lord Kr~l)a's
storefront in New York City, he founded the Inter- birthday celebration (janma$tam u. Therefore both
national Society for Krishn a Consciousness events are observed side by side with equal en-
(ISKCON) and began the movement that's surprising thusiasm. You'll find out more about the significance
the world with its remarkable growth and popularity. o f these two days as you read through this issue of
Over the past nine years, SrTia Prabhupada has BACK TO GODHEAD.

His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada )

Founder·Acarya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness

(undrr thr dm•cr,on of Hi5 Divint' c;ucr CONTENTS
Sri Srirrud Dh~kt1S1ddhinu S.u:uvnl J•nbhupid~)
His 01v1nC' Gr-ace What Is a Guru? 3
A.C. Bbaktivedanta Swami Prabbupiida A lecture given by His Divine Grace
A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada.
SENIOR. EDITOR. His Holiness Satsvarupa d:isa Gosvaml
MANAGING EOITOR.jagannitha-suta disa Celebrating the Bi rth of Lord Krsna 9
Thousands attend the birthday celebration of lord Sri Krsna
EDITOR.JAL BOARD Diimodara dba, Dravi~a dasa, at an English country estate. ·· ·
Jayiidvaita disa, Visiikha-devi diisi by Madhavananda dasa
SANSKRIT EDITOR. Santosa diisa
ART DIRECTOR.Bhakta-dcvi diisi
The K illing of Putani Wit ch 12
Even as a child lord Kr~lJa displayed superhuman qualities.
ILLUSTRATORS Muralidhara dba, Bharadriija diisa, A story from K{$1)a, The Supreme Personality of Godhead.
YaduriQI-devl dasi. Pariksit diisa
PHOTOGRAPHERS Bh~rgava dasa, Yaduvara disa. Delivering the Message Unchanged 19
Mur.livadano diisa, Vis:i kh :i-dcvi diisi BTG's senior editor explains the special qualification
of a genuine guru.
TECHNICIANS Madhusudana diisa, Yamarija disa,
Cak radhara disa, Arcita dasa by His Holiness Satsvarupa dasa Gosvami
PROOFREADERS Dravi~a dasa. JayaS.cl nandana dasa, The Most Blessed Event 20
dasa A disciple expresses his gratitude
TYPE COMPOSERS Matsya diisa, j ayad harma dasa to his spiritual master.
by Giriraja dasa

OlJt!l Published monthly. 56.00 per year (57.00 outside Sri Vyisa-.,Uja Offering 23
~ USA), by the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust, 3764 A simple expression of reverence and love.
Watseka Ave .. Los Angeles. Calif. 90034. by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
© 1975 Bhaktivedanta flook Trust
All rights reserved. Printed in USA. The Universal Teacher 24
A lecture delivered in 1936 by His Divine Grace
PRONUNCIATION OF SANSKRIT WORDS A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada.
Sanskrit words and names in BACK TO GODHEAD
arc spelled according to a system that scholars
throughout the world usc to show how to Special Centerfold Section:
pronounce each word. Vowels in Sanskrit are
pronounced almost as in Italian . The sound of the Srimad-Bhi gavatam
shon • is like the" in bo<t. The long dis like the a in The first installment of a serialized presentation
far and held twice as long as the shon a. and f is like of India's great spiritual classic.
the • in evade. Long i is like the i in pique. The Translation and commentary
vowel ris pronounced like the er in the Engli sh by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada.
word fiber. The< is pronounced as in the English
word <hair. The aspirated consonants (rh.jh. Jlo, etc.)
are pronounced as in staunrh-hcan. hedg..-hog and
red-loot. The two sibi lants i and 1 are like the INTERNATIONAL SOCIETY FOR KRISHNA CONSCIOUSNESS
English slo. and sis like the sin sun. So pronounce CENTERS AROUND THE WORLD
Kmoa as KRISHNA and O,itmoya as CHAIT ANY A.
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Photos: BhB•oava dasa BACK TO GODHEAD 3
"A criminal may say, 'I did not know the law,'
but he will not be excused if he commits a crime.
Ignorance is no excuse."

om ajiiana-timiriindhasya
living entities-from ants or mosquitos
or flies-or we may suffer due to some
cak$ur unmilitam yena
superior power. There may be no rain or
tasmai sri-gurave nama& there may be flood. There may be ex-
"I was born in the darkest ignorance, cessive heat or excessive cold. So many
and my guru, my spiritual master, opened types of suffering are imposed by nature.
my eyes with the torch of knowledge. I Thus there are three types of miseries
offer my respectful obeisances unto within the material world, and everyone
him." is suffering from one, two or three of
The word ajiiana means ignorance or them. No one can say that he is com-
darkness. If all the lights in this room pletely free from suffering.
immediately went out, we would not be We may then ask why the 1iving entity
able to cell where we or others are sit- is suffering. The answer is: out of ig-
ting. Everything would become con- norance. He does not think, "I am com-
fused. Similarly, we are all in darkness in mitting mistakes and am leading a sinful
this material world, which is a world of life; that is why I am suffering."
tamas. Tamas or timira means darkness. Therefore the guru's first business is to
This material world is dark, and rescue his disciple from this ignorance.
therefore it needs sunlight or moonlight We send our children to school to save
for illumination. However, there is excused if he commits a crime. Ig- them from suffering. If our children do
another world, a spiritual world, that is norance is no excuse. Similarly, a child, not receive an education, we fear that
beyond this darkness. That world is de- not knowing that fire will burn, wilt they will suffer in the future. The guru
scribed by Sri K_f~l}.a in Bhagavad-gitii: touch the fire. The fire does no't think, sees that suffering is due to ignorance,
"This is a child, and he does not know I which is compared to darkness. How can
na tad bhasayate suryo one in darkness be saved? By light. The
will burn." No, there is no excuse. Just
tla sasiinko na piivakab guru takes the torchlight of knowledge
as there are state laws, there are also
yad gatvii na nivartante and presents it before the living entity
stringent laws of nature, and these laws
tad dhama paramam mama enveloped in darkness. That knowledge
will act despite our ignorance of them. If
"That abode of Mine is not illumined by we do something wrong out of ig- relieves him from the sufferings of the
the sun or moon, nor by electricity. One norance, we must suffer. This is the law. darkness of ignorance.
who reaches it never returns to this ma- Whether the law is a state law or a law Guru is One
terial world." (Bg. 15.6) of nature, we risk suffering if we break
it. One may ask whether the guru is ab-
From Darkness to Light
The guru's business is to see that no solutely necessary. The Vedas inform us
The g11ru's business is to bring his dis- human being suffers in this material that he is:
ciples from darkness to light. At present world. No one can claim that he is not
tad vijiianiirtham sa gurum evabhigacchet
everyone is suffering due to ignorance, suffering. That is not possible. In this
samit-piit;iih srotriyam brahma-ni${ham
just as one contacts a disease out of ig- material world, there are three kinds of
norance. If one does not know hygienic suffering: adhyiitmika, adhibhautika and (Mu~;~4aka Up. 1.2.12)
principles, he will not know what will adhidaivika. These are miseries arising The Vedas enjoin us to seek out a guru;
contaminate him. Therefore due to ig- from the material body and mind, from actually, they say to seek out the guru, not
norance there is infection, and we suffer other living entities and from the forces just a guru. The guru is one because he
from disease. A criminal may say, "l did of nature. We may suffer mental comes in disciphc succession. What
not know the law," but he will not be anguish, or we may suffer from other Vyasadeva and Kr$.1J.a taught 5,000

"A rascal guru may say, 'I am God,' or
'We are all God.' That is all right, but we should find out
what the meaning of God is."

years ago is also being taught now. the meaning of supreme. Any dictionary
There is no difference between the two will inform us that supreme means "the
instructions. Although hundreds and greatest authority." We may then ask,
thousands of iiciiryas have come and gone, "Are you the greatest authority?" Such a
the message is one. The real guru cannot rascal gur~~, even though proclaiming
be two because the real guru does not himself to be God, cannot answer such a
speak differently from his predecessors. question. God is the Supreme Being and
Some spiritual teachers say, "In my the highest authoriry. No one is equal to
opinion you should do this," but this is Him or greater than Him. Yet there are
not a gur~~. Such so-called gurus are many guru Gods, many rascals who claim
simply rascals. The genuine gur~~ has to be the Supreme. Such rascals cannot
only one opinion, and that is the opinion help us escape the darkness of material
expressed by Km1.a, Vyasadeva, Narada, existence. They cannot illumine our
Arjuna, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and darkness with the torchlight of spiritual
the Gosvamis. Five thousand years ago knowledge.
Lord Sri KnJ:~.a spoke Bhagavad-gita, and The bona fide guru will simply present
Vyasadeva recorded it. Srila Vyasadeva what the supreme guru, God, says in
did not say, "This is my opinion." bona fide scripture. A guru cannot
Rather, he wrote, sri bhagaviin uviica, that change the message of the disciplic suc-
is, "The Supreme Personaliry of of God- sances and worship Me. Being com- cession. Once there was a gentleman
head says." Whatever Vyasadeva wrote pletely absorbed in Me, surely you will named Vallabhacarya, who was very
was originally spoken by the Supreme come to Me."(Bg. 9.34) These very in- devoted to Caitanya Mahaprabhu.
Personality of Godhead. Srila Vyasadeva structions were reiterated by all the Vallabhacarya wrote a commentary on
did not give his own opinion. iiciiryas-Ramanujacarya, Madhvacarya Srimad-Bhagavatam, and he presented it to
Consequently, Srila Vyasadeva is a and Caitanya Mahaprabhu. The six Caitanya Mahaprabhu, saying, "Lord
guru. He does not misinterpret the words Gosvamis also transmitted the same Caitanya, please hear my commentary
of KnJ:~.a but transmits them exactly as message, and we are simply following in on Srimad-Bhiigavatam. You will find that
they were spoken. If we send a telegram, their footsteps. There is no difference. it is far better than Sridhara Svaml's."
the person who delivers the telegram We do not interpret the words of K..r~J:~.a Sridhara Svami was a very ancient com-
does not have to correct it, edit it or add by saying, "In my opinion, the Bat- mentator: Caitanya Mahaprabhu im-
to it. He simply presents it. That is the tlefield of Kuruk~etra represents the mediately rejected Vallabhacarya, say-
gun1's business. The guru may be this per- human body." Such interpretations are ing, "Oh, are you claiming that you have
son or that, but the message is the same; set forth by rascals. In the world there written something better than Sridhara
therefore it is said that guru is one. are many rascal gur~~s who give their own Svami?" Caitanya Mahaprabhu then
In the disciplic succession we simply opinion, but we can challenge any ras- chastised Vallabhacarya, saying, sviimike
find repetition of the same subject. In cal. A rascal guru may say, "I am God," yini nii rniinena, tini veiyii. Sri Caitanya
Bhagavad-gitii Sri KnJ:~.a says: or, "We are all God." That is all right, Mahaprabhu sarcastically used the word
but we should find out from the diction- sviimi, which also means husband. He
man-manii bhava mad-bhakto
ary what the meaning of God is. said, "I think that one who does not rec-
mad-yiiji miiril namaskur11
Generally, a dictionary will tell us that ognize the sviimi [husband] is a
rniim evai~yasi yuktvaivam
the word God indicates the Supreme prostitute." In other words, "If you do
iitmiinaril mat-pariiya~;~t~b
Being. Thus we may ask such a guru, not recognize Sridhara Svami, then you
"Engage your mind always in thinking "Are you the Supreme Being?" If he can- are a prostitute. How can I hear from a
of Me, become My devotee, offer obei- not understand this, then we should give prostitute?"

" One who is serious about understanding spiritual life
requi res a guru."

No Research Necessary sarva-dharmiin pariryajya

mam ekam iaratJQtiJ vraja
We must understand that we cannot
aham tvam sarva-papebhyo
carry out research to find the Absolute
mok$ayi$ytimi mii sucab
Truth. Caitanya Mahaprabhu Himself
said, "My Guru Maharaja considered me "Abandon all varieties of religion and
a great fool." He who remains a great just surrender unto Me. 1 sh all de\iver
fool before his guru is a guru himself. you from all sinful reaction. Do not
However, if one says, "I am so advanced fear." (Bg.18.66) Someone may argue,
that I can speak better than my gun1," he "Where is Kr~l)a? I shall surrender to
is simply a rascal. In Bhagavad-gitii Sri Him." But no, the process is that we first
Knl)a says: surrender to ~~!)a's representative; then
evam parampard-praptam we surrender co Kr~l)a. Therefore it is
imam ra}aJ1ayo vidub said, saksad-dharitvena samasta-itistraib: the
sa kaleneha mahata guru is as good as God. When we offer
yogo ntJ1Jab parantapa respects to the guru, we are offering
"This supreme science was thus received respects to God. Because we arc crying to
through the chain of disciplic succes- be God conscious, it is required that we
sion, and the saintly kings understood it learn how to offer respects to God
in that way. But in course of time the through God's representative. In all the
succession was broken, and therefore the "Now I am confused about my duty and siiStras, the guru is described tO be as good
science as it is appears to be have lost all composure because of weak- as God, but the guru never says, "I am
lost." (Bg.4.2) ness. In this condition I am asking You God." The disciple's duty is to offer
Taking on a guru is not simply a to tell me clearly what is best for me. respect to the guru just as he offers
fashion. One who is serious about Now I am Your disciple and a soul sur- respect to God, but the guru never
understanding spiritual life requires a rendered unto You. Please instruct thinks, "My disciples are offering me
guru. A guru is a question of necessity, for me." {Bg.2. 7) the same respect they offer to God;
one inusc be very serious to understand therefore I have become God." As soon
spiritual life, God, proper action and From "God" to Dog as he thinks like this, he becomes a dog
one's relationship with God. When we instead of God. Therefore Visvanatha
This is the process for accepting a
are very serious about understanding Cakravarti says, kintu prabhor yab priya eva
guru. The guru is Kf~l)a's representative, tasya. Because he is the most confidential
these subjects, we need a gun1. We the former acaryas' reprcsentati ve. Knl)a
shouldn't go to a guru simply because a servitor of God, the guru is offered the
says that all acaryas arc His representa- same respect that we offer God. God is
guru may be fashionable at the moment. tives; therefore the guru should be
Surrender must be there, for without always God, guru is always guru. As a
offered the same respect one would offer matter of etiquette, God is the worship-
surrender we cannot learn anything. If to God. As Visvanatha Cakravarti
we go to a guru simply to challenge him, able God, and guru is the worshiper God
Thakura says in his prayers to the (sevci-bhagavan). Therefore the guru is ad-
we will learn nothing. But we must ac- spiritual master: yasya prasadad bhagavat-
cept t~e guru just as Arjuna accepted his dressed as prabhupada. The word prabhu
prasadab. "By the mercy of the spiritual means "lord," and piida means
guru, Sri Knl)a Himself: master, one receives the benediction of "position." Thus prabhupada means "he
karpat~ya-do1opahata-svabhavab Knl)a." Thus, if we surrender to the who has taken rhc position of the Lord."
prcchami tvdril dharma~sammu~ha-cetiib bona 6dc guru, we surrender to God. God This is the same as sak$ad-dharitvena
yac chreyab syan niScitam brnhi tan me accepts our surrender to the guru. samasta-idstraib.
ii$yas te 'ham iadhi miim tvdm prapam1am In Bhagavad-gita, KnJ:ta instructs: Only if we arc very serious about

"We should not accept a guru suddenly out of fanaticism.
That is very dangerous."

understanding the science of God is a Whatever posmon we have in this

guru required. We should not try to keep material world must be given up. We
<l guru as a matter of fashion. One who may have a good position or a bad posi-
has accepted a guru speaks intelligently. tion; in any case, we cannot remain
He never speaks nonsense. That is the here. W e may earn millions of dollars
sign of having accepted a bona fide guru. and think, "Now I am in a good posi-
We should certainly offer all respect to tion," but a little dysentery or cholera
the spiritual master, but we should also will finish our position. If the bank fails,
remember how to carry out his orders. our position is gone. So actually there is
In Bhagavad-gitii Sri Kn1:1a Himself tells no good position in this material world.
us the method of seeking out and ap- It is a farce. Those who try to attain a
proaching the guru: better position in the material world are
ultimately defeated because there is no
tad viddhi prat~ipiitena better position. Bhagavad-gitii(14.26)
pariprasnena sevayii says what the better position is:
upadek$yanti te jiiiinaril
jiiiininas tattva-darsinab miiril ca yo 'vyabhiciir~a
bhakti-yogena sevate
"Just try to learn the truth by approach- sa guttan samatityaitiin
ing a spiritual master. Inquire from him brahma-bhuyiiya kalpate
submissively and render service unto
Perfecting Our Life
him. The self-realized soul can impart "One who engages in full devotional
knowledge unto you because he has seen service, who does not fall down in any
the truth." (Bg.4.34) The first process is Everyone is born a rascal and a fool. If circumstance, at once transcends the
that of surrender. We have to find an ex- we arc born learned, why do we need tc. modes of material nature and thus comes
alted person and willingly surrender go to school? If we do not cultivate to the level of Brahman."
before him. The siistras enjoin that before knowledge, we arc no better than Is there any science that gives us the
we take a guru we study him carefully to animals. An animal may say that there is knowledge by which we may become
find out whether we can surrender to no need of books and that he has become immortal? Yes, we may become immor-
him. We should not accept a guru sud- a guru, but how can anyone obtain tal, but not in the material sense. W e
denly out of fanaticism. That is very knowledge without the study of authori- cannot receive this knowledge in so-
dangerous. The guru should also study tative books on science and philosophy? called universities. However, there is
the person who wants to become a dis- Rascal gums try to avoid these things. knowledge contained in the Vedic scrip-
ciple to see if he is fit. That is the way a We must understand that we arc all born tures by which we may become immor-
relationship is established between the rascals and fools and that we have to be tal. That immortality is our better posi-
guru and disciple. Everything is pro- enlightened. We have to receive knowl- tion. No more binh, no more death, no
vided, but we must take up the process edge to make our lives perfect. If we do more old age, no more disease. Thus the
seriously. Then we can be trained to be- not perfect our lives, we arc defeated. guru takes on a very great responsibility.
come a bona fide disciple. First we must What is this defeat? The struggle for ex- He must guide his disciple and enable
find a bona fide guru, establish our rela- istence. We arc trying to obtain a better him to become an eligible candidate for
tionship with him and act accordingly. life, to attain a superior position, and for the perfect position, immortality. The
Then our life will be successful, for the this we arc struggling very hard. But we guru must be competent to lead his dis-
guru can enlighten the sincere disciple do not know what a superior position ac- ciple back home, back to Godhead.
who is in darkness. tually is. Thank you very much. @

Five thousand years ago,
Kr~r:ta, the Supreme
Personality of Godhead,
descended from the
spiritual world a~d
appeared in Vrndavana,
India. Naturally an occasion
of great joy for His
devotees, His birthday,
Janma~tami, was celebrated
with opulence and gaiety.
The original Janma~tami
(pictured left) took place in
Vrndavana at the house of
Kr~r:ta's fo~ter father, Nanda
Maharaja. Learned
brahmar:tas and astrologers
led the festivities, and all
the town's residents joined
in the singing, dancing, and
feasting. Each year since
then Lord Kr~r:ta' s devotees
have marked the auspicious
event in the same way.
Today, people from many
nations, having heard about
this wonderful day, take
pleasure in celebrating
Janma~tami. The following
pages depict last year' s
festival at Bhaktivedanta
Manor, near London,

The Birth
of Lord K~~~;ta
A n International H oliday

by Madhavananda dasa

Many Indian people who have left

their homeland in search of material
prosperity in the West have become
estranged from their own culture. But
when they see young Westerners taking
to the essence of the Vedic tradition in
the form of Kni:la consciousness, they
are moved to review their neglected
heritage and revive their practice. Thus
thousands of Indians regularly . visit
Kr~Qa consciousness centers around the
world. One of them, Bhaktivedanta
Manor, is pictured here.
Bhakrivedanta Manor is a large estate
in the countryside near London, En-
gland. Its bountiful gardens, orchards,
pastureland and dairy accompany an ex-
quisite temple graced by Deities of Lord
Kr~Qa and His eternal consort,
Radharal)i. The formal name of the
Deities, Sri Sri Radha-Gokulananda,
honors Gokula, a farming village in
India where Kr~Qa lived thousands of
Smiling affectionately, the Deities greet visitors to years ago.
Bhaktivedanta Manor. Drawn by these perennial attractions,
busloads of Indian guests come to the
Manor every Sunday. As they arrive,
Friends of the Society from the London area gather they bow down before the altar, offering
at the estate for the janmagami fair. prayers, fruits, grains and Bowers. The
Indian guests feel quite at home doing
this, for as His Divine Grace A. C.
Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada has
said, "Most Indian people are by nature
Kr~l).a conscious, but being attracted by
the glare of material life in the West,
they have forgotten their great culture
and heritage."
Of course, Indians are not alone in
this regard. The cultural mainstream of
all human civilization, East and West, is
its spiritual heritage, and all contempo-
rary societies are beset by forgetfulness
of this fact. It is the aim of the Inter-
national Society for Krishna Conscious-
ness to remind us all, regardless of back-
ground, of our permanent relationship
with the Supreme Personality of God-
head. Indians and native-born Britishers
alike appreciate the transcendental

qualities of a Sunday feast at the Manor.
Last August at Bhaktivedanta Manor,
a celebration of the birthday, or ap-
pearance day, of Lord KHJ:la drew over
five thousand people to the temple. That
gathering is seen on these pages. Kn1:1a's
appearance day, called Janmagami, is
the most important holiday on the Vedic
calendat Expecting a crowd, the devo-
tees erected a large tent on the front
lawn. Inside the tent, festivities - plays,
movies, slides, discourses and congrega-
6onal chanting of the Lord's holy
names - continued through the day and
evening until midnight. Then a magnifi-
cent ceremony called abhi$eka was per-
formed. The Deities were bathed in
yogurt, milk, rose water, clarified butter
and honey, with fifteen hundred guests
staying to watch. At its conclusion, Indians are familiar with Vedic literature, but most haven't heard the
everyone enjoyed a sumptuous feast of meaning clearly explained. They are eager to read the books of His Divine
food offered to KnJ:la. That evening, in- Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada to gain a better
spired by the transcendental mission of understanding.
ISKCON, eleven guests enrolled in the
society's life membership program.
On many days that summer, the
Deities were taken from Their altar, Chanting the
lord's holy
placed on a palanquin and carried
names is the
through the local village of Letchmore
highlight of the
Heath. Hundreds of participants
program, and it
followed, chanting Hare KHJ:la, Hare continues for
Kr~1~a, Kr~J:la KnJ:la, Hare Hare/Hare
many hours.
Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare The beautiful
Hare. And in November a throng of sound awakens
nine thousand came to the Manor to spiritual
celebrate a favorit e holiday, consciousness.
Govardhana-puja, which commemor-
ates Kr~J:la 's transcendental pastime of I
lifting Govardhana Hill.
On hearing about the marvelous
programs at Bhaktivedanta Manor, Srila
Prabhupada commented, "This move-
ment of Lord Caitanya's is so wonderful.
and guests
There are so many festivals - Jan-
crowd into
magami, Gaura-pur1,1ima, Govardhana-
the huge
puja, Jhulana-yatra, Ratha-yatra, Rasa-
pavilion all
lila. Practically speaking, there is a big
afternoon and
festival every two months. So let there be
evening for the
many such wonderful programs, and let
plays, dances
everyone come and see the blissful life of
and concerts.
Kr~1.1a consciousness." The devotees of
The Deities
the International Society for Krishna preside at the
Consciousness extend this invitation to right of the
all readers of BACK TO GODHEAD . We stage.
hope you'll join us at the ISKCON
center nearest you for this month's Jan-
maHami celebration on August 30. 0

Even as a child,
Lord Kr~Qa
His divinity by
superhuman feats.
The following
account of His
slaying the
witch 'Putana is
taken from Krsna,
.. .
The Supreme
of Godhead,
by His Divine Grace
A. C. Bhaktivedanta
Swami Prabhupada.

Illustration Muralfdhara dasa

AFTER consulting with his demoniac Piltana thought, "This child is so power- siidhuniim viniisiiya ca d~krcam. The first
ministers, Karilsa instructed a witch ful that He can destroy the whole uni- demon to be killed was a woman. Ac-
named Piltana, who knew the black art verse immediately." cording to Vedic rules, the killing of a
of killing small children by ghastly, sin- woman, a briihma~a. cows or of a child is
ful methods, tO kill all kinds of children God is Always God
forbidden. Kr~t:~a was obliged to kill the
in the cities, villages and pasturing Piltana's understanding is very signifi- demon Piltana, and because the killing
grounds. Such witches can play their cant. The Supreme Personality of God- of a woman is forbidden according to the
black art only where there is no chant- head, Knt:ta, is situated in everyone's Vedic siistra, He could not help but close
ing or hearing of the holy name of heart. It is stated in the Bhagavad-gita that His eyes. Another interpretation is that
Kr~~a. It is said that wherever the chant- He gives one necessary intelligence, and Kr~t:ta closed His eyes because He simply
ing of the holy name of Knt:ta is done, He also causes one to forget. Piltana was took Piltana to be His nurse. Piltana
even negligently, all bad elements- immediately aware that the child whom came to KrHta just to offer her breast for
witches, ghosts and dangerous she was observing in the house of Nand a the Lord to suck. Knt:~a is so merciful
calamities- immediately disappear. And Maharaja was the Supreme Personality that even though H e knew Piltana was
this is certainly true of the place where of Godhead Himself. He was lying there there to kill Him, He took her as His
the chanting of the holy name of Kr~~a as a small baby, but that does not mean nurse or mother.
is done serio usly-especially in that He was less powerful. The mate- There are seven kinds of mothers ac-
Vrndavana when the Supreme Lord was rialistic theory that God-worship is cording to Vedic injunction: the real
personally present. Therefore, the anthropomorphic is not correct. No liv- mother, the wife of a teacher or spiritual
doubts of Nanda Maharaja were cer- ing being can become God by undergo- master, the wife of a king, the wife of a
tainly based on affection for Kn~a. Ac- ing meditation or austerities. God is al- briihma~a, the cow, the nurse and the
tually there was no danger from the ac- ways God. Knt:ta as the child-baby is as mother earth. Because Piltana came to
tivities of Piltana, despite her powers. complete as He is as a full-fledged youth. take Kr~t:ta on her lap and offer her
Such witches are called khecari, which The Mayavada theory holds that the liv- breast's milk to be sucked by H im, she
means they can fly in the sky. This black ing entity was formerly God but has now was accepted by Knt:~a as one of His
art of witchcraft is still practiced by become overwhelmed by the influence mothers. That is considered to be
some women in the remote north- of miiyii. Therefore they say that pres- another reason He closed His eyes: He
western side of India. They can transfer ently he is not God, but when the in- had to kill a nurse or mother. But His
themselves from one place to another on fluence of miiyii is taken away, then he killing of His mother or nurse was no
the branch of an uprooted tree. Piltana again becomes God. This theory cannot different from His love for His real
knew this witchcraft, and therefore she be applied to the minute living entities. mother or foster mother Yasoda. We
is described in the Bluigavatam as khecari. The living entities are minute parts and further understand from Vedic informa-
Putana entered the county of Gokula, parcels of the Supreme Personality of tion that Piltana was also treated as a
the residential quarter of Nanda Godhead; they are minute particles or mother and given the same facility as
Maharaja, without permission. Dressing sparks of the supreme fire, but they are Yasoda. As Yasoda was given liberation
herself just like a beautiful woman, she not the original fire, or Knt:ta. Knt:~a is from the material world, so Piltana was
entered the house of Mother Yasoda. She the Supreme Personality of Godhead, also given liberation. When the baby
appeared very beautiful with raised hips, even from the beginning of His ap- Knt:ta closed His eyes, Piltana took Him
nicely swollen breasts, and flowers in pearance in the house of Vasudeva and on her lap. She did not know that she
her hair. She looked especially beautiful Devaki. was holding death personified. If a per-
on account of her thin waist. She was Knt:ta showed the nature of a small son mistakes a snake for a rope, he dies.
glancing at everyone, with attractive baby and closed His eyes, as if to avoid Similarly, Piltana killed so many babies
looks and smiling face, and all the resi- the face of Piltana. This closing of the before meeting Kr$J:la, but now she was
dents of Vrndavana were captivated. eyes is interpreted and studied in dif- accepting the snake that would kill her
The innocent cowherd women thought ferent ways by the devotees. Some say immediately.
that she was a goddess of fortune appear- that Kr~t:ta closed His eyes because He
ing in Vrndavana with a lotus flower in did not like to see the face of Piltana,
A Sword in a Decorated Case
her hand. It seemed to them that she had who had killed so many children and When Piltana was taking baby Knt:ta
personally come to see Kn~a, who is her who had now come to kill Him. Others on her lap, both Yasoda and Rohit:ti were
husband. Because of her exquisite say that something extraordinary was present, but they did not forbid her be-
beauty, no one checked her movement, being dictated to her, and in order to cause she was so beautifully dressed and
and therefore she freely entered the give her assurance, Knt:~a closed His eyes because she showed motherly affection
house of Nanda Maharaja. Piltana, the so that she would not be frightened. And towards Knt:~a. They could not under-
killer of many, many children, found yet others interpret in this way: Kr~t:~a stand that she was a sword within a
baby Kr~t:~a lying on a small bed, and she appeared to kill the demons and give decorated case. Piltana had smeared a
could at once perceive that the baby was protection to the devotees, as it is stated very powerful poison on her breasts, and
hiding His unparalleled potencies. in the Bhagavad-gicii(4.8): paritrii~iiya immediately after taking the baby on her

lap, she pushed her breastly nipple with- rituals by taking the tail of a cow and protect You from falling down; when
in His mouth. She was hoping that as circumambulating His body. The child You are sitting, may the Lord of
soon as He would suck her breast, He was com pletely washed with the urine of Vaikul)~ha give You all protection; and
would die. But baby K.mu very quickly a cow, and the dust created by the while You are eating, may the Lord of all
took the nipple in angeL He sucked the hooves of the cows was thrown all over sacrifices give You all protection."
milk-poison along with the life air of the His body. This was all just to save little: Thus Mother Yasod:i began to chant
demon. In other words, Knt;1a K!~t:la from further inauspicious acci- different names of Vi$1)U to protect the
simultaneously sucked the milk from her dents. This incident gives us a clear in- child K!~I:la's different bodily parts.
breast and killed her by sucking out her dication of how important the cow is to Mother Yasodli. was firmly convinced
life. Knt:la is so merciful that because the the family, society and to living beings in that she should protect her child from
demon Putana came to offer her breast- general. The transcendental body of different kinds of evil spirits and
milk to Him, He fulfilled her desire and Knl)a did not require any protection, ghosts - namely ()akinls, Yatudhanls,
accepted her activity as motherly. But to but to instruct us on the importance of K.li$m:it;lc,l:is, Yak$aS, Rak$asas,
stop her from further nefarious ac- the cow, the Lord was smeared over Vinayakas, Korara, Revatl, JyeHha,
tivities, He immediately killed heL And with cow dung, washed with the urine Putana, Matrkas, Unm:idas and similar
because the demon was killed by KnQa, of a cow and sprinkled with the dust other evil spirits who cause persons to
she got liberation. When Knt:la sucked upraised by the walking of the cows. forget their own existence and give trou-
out her very breath, Putana fell down on After this purificatory process, the ble to the life air and the senses. Some-
the ground, spread her arms and legs and gopis, headed by Mother Yasoda and times they appear in dreams and cause
began to cry, "Oh, child, leave me, leave Rohit;1i, chanted twelve names of Vi~I)U much perturbation; sometimes they ap-
mel" She was crying loudly and perspir- to give K!~t:la's body full protection from pear as old women and suck the blood of
ing, and her whole body became wet. all evil influences. They washed their small children. But all such ghosts and
hands and feet and sipped water three evil spirits cannot remain where there is
Nightmare Finished times, as is the custom before chanting chancing of the holy name of God.
As she died screaming, there was a mantra. T hey chanted as follows: "My Mother Yasoda was firmly convinced of
tremendous vibration both on the earth dear Knt;la, may the Lord who is known the Vedic injunctions about the impor-
and in the sky, in all directions, and as Mat;1im:in protect Your thighs; may tance of cows and the holy name of
people thought that thunderbolts were Lord Vi$t;lU who is known as Yajna pro- Vi~Qu; therefore she took all shelter in
falling. Thus the nightmare of the tect Your legs; may Lord Acyuta protect the cows and the name of Vi$t;1U so that
Putana witch was over, and she assumed Your arms; may Lord Hayagriva protect He might save. the child. Vedic culture
her real feature as a great demon. She Your abdomen; may Lord Kesava pro- has taken advantage of keeping cows and
opened her fierce mouth and spread her tect Your heart; may Lord Vi$1)U protect chanting the holy name of Vi$t;lU since
arms and legs all oveL She fell exactly as Your arms; may Lord Urukrama protect the beginning of history, and persons
v,k:~.sura when struck by the thunder- Your face; may Lord isvara protect Your who are still following the Vedic ways,
bolts of lndra. The long hair on her head head; may Lord Cakradhara protect especially the householders, keep at least
wa.s scattered all over her body. Her Your front; may Lord Gadadhara protect one dozen cows and worship the Deity
fallen body extended up to twelve miles Your back; may Lord Madhusudana, of Lord Vi$t;1U, who is installed in their
and smashed all the trees to pieces, and who carries a bow in His hand, protect house.
everyone was struck with wonder upon Your eyesight; may Lord Vi$1)U with His
seeing this gigantic body. Her teeth ap- conchshell protect Your left side; may Loving Protection
peared just like ploughed roads, and her the Personality of Godhead Upendra The elderly gopis of Vrndavana were
nostrils appeared just like mountain protect You from above, and may Lord so absorbed in affection for K!~t:la that
caves. Her breasts appeared like blind T:i.rkwa protect You from below the they wanted to save Him, although there
wells, and her two thighs appeared like earth; may Lord Haladhara protect You was no need to, for He had already pro-
two banks of a river; her two hands ap- from all sides; may the Personality of tected Himself. They could not under-
pearl!d like two strongly contructed Godhead Hnikesa protect all Your stand that KrHla was the Supreme Per-
b:1dges, and her abdomen seemed like a senses; may Lord Narayal)a protect Your sonality of Godhead playing as a child.
dried-up lake. All the cowherd men and breath; and may the Lord ofSvetadv!pa, After performing the formalities to pro-
women became struck with awe and Narayal)a, protect Your heart; may Lord tect the child, Mother Yasod:i took KT~t:la
wonder upon seeing this. And the Yogdvara protect Your mind; may Lord and let Him suck her own breast. When
tumultuous sound of her falling shocked Prsnlgarbha protect Your intelligence, the child was protected by Vi~t;1u mantra,
their brains and ears and made their and may the Supreme Personality of Mother Yasoda felt that He was safe. In
hearts beat strongly. Godhead protect Your soul. While You the meantime, all the cowherd men who
When the gopis saw little K!~t:la play- are playing, may Lord Govinda protect went to Mathura to pay tax returned
ing on Putana's lap, they very quickly You from all sides; and when You are home and were struck with wonder at
came and picked Him up. Mother sleeping, may Lord Madhava protect seeing the gigantic dead body of Putana.
Yasodli., Rohit;1I and other elderly gopis You from all danger; when You are
immediately performed the auspicious working, may the Lord of Vaikul)rha (continued on page 17)

This is the first installment of a new monthly feature: a serialized presentation of Srimad-Bhagavatam, India's
great spiritual classic written 5,000 years ago by Kr~l)a Dvaipayana Vyasa, and now presented in a new translation
with commentary by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. Srimad-Bhagavatam provides the key
to how humanity can become united in peace, prosperity and friendship around a common cause. That common
cause is the spiritual oneness of all living beings, and the Srimad-Bhagavatam presents a revolutionary ideology
which can serve as the basis for the re-spiritualization of society. There is no lack of mundane scientific advance-
ment in today's world, but what is lacking is knowledge of the science of God. Therefore, in a world suffering from
universal discord, anxiety and confusion, there is no more important literature than this brilliant Srimad-Bhagavatam.
If you would like to obtain any single volume or the entire series of Srimad-Bhagavatam currently in print, please see
page 15.

First Canto created by Ute three modes of nature, appear to be factual , although they
are unreal. I meditate therefore upon Him, the Absolute Truth, who is
e ternally existent i.n His transcendental abode. and who is forever free of
"Creation" illusion.
Chapter One Obeisances unto the Personality o f Godhead, Vasudeva, directl y indicate
Questions by the Sages Lo rd Sri Krsna, who is the divine son of Vasudeva and Devaki. This fact
will be m o;~ ·explicitl y e xplained in the text of this work. Sri Vyasadeva
TEXT 1 asserts herein that Sri Kr~tta is the o riginal Personality of Godhead , and all
o thers are liis direct o r indirec t plenary portio ns or porti ons of the
3J. ;pit ~;ffi ~ po rtio n. Srila Jlva Gosvami has even mo re explir itly explained the subject
iij;lfllf@f ~ffis~~~mr.~~~: H~ matter in his Kmw-sandarblta. And Brahma, the original living being, has
ex plained the subj ect of Sri Kr~pa substan tiall y in his treatise named
~ i11t W ~ anf~;r~ ~ ~~: I Braluna-satithitii. In the Siima-veda Upan4ad, it is also stated that Lord Sri
~-51~ ~m f'lf'fqm ~.f~Sll'fl K[~pa is the divine son of Devaki. Therefo re, in this prayer, the first pro·
positi on ho lds that Lord Sri Kr~!la is the primeval Lord , and tf any tran-
~ ~~~fOffiij~ ~ tR mqfu II~ II scendental no menclature is to be understood as belonging to the Absolute
Personality of Godhead , it must be the nam e indicated by the wo rd Kr-~!la,
om namo bhagavate viisudeviiy a which mea ns the all -attractive. In Bhagavad-gitii, in many places, the Lord
janm.iidy a$ya yato 'nvayiid itaratas ciirthe§v abhijiia~ sva-rii? asserts Himself t o be th.e origi nal Personality of Godhead , and this is
tene brahma hrdii ya iidi-kavaye muhyanti y at siiray a{1 confirmed by Arjuna, and also by great sages like Narada , Vyasa, and many
tejo-viiri-mrdiim yathii vinimayo yatro tri-sargo 'mr,1ii o th ers. In the Padma Purii[!a, it is also stated that o ut of the innumerable
dhiimnii $Vena sadii nirasta-kuhakarh satyam pararh dhirnahi. names of the Lord , the name of K!lJr;ta is the principal one. Vasudeva
indi cates the plenary portio n of the Personality of Godhead, and aU the
om- 0 my Lord ; nama{1- offering my obeisan ces; bhagavate- unto the different fo rms of the Lord , being ide ntical with Vasud eva, are indi cated
Personality of Godhead ; viisudeviiy a- unto Vasudeva (the son of Vasudeva), in this tex t. The nam e Vasudeva particularl y indicates the divine son of
or Lord Sri J<r~pa, the Primeval Lo rd; janma-iidi-crcatio n, suste nance and Vasudeva and Oevaki. Sri Kr~!la is always meditated upo n by the
destructio n; asya- of the manifested uni verses; y ata{t-from who m; anva- paramaharhsas who are the perfected o nes among those in the re nounced
yiit- dircclly; itarala/t- indireclly; w - and ; arthe§u- purposes; abhijiia/1- orde r of life.
fully cognizant; sva-riit- full y independent; tene-imparted; brahma- the Vasudeva. or Lord Sri Kr~!la, is the cause of aU causes. Everything that
Vedic knowledge; hrdii-consciousness of th e heart; ya{l.-o ne who; iidi- ex ists e manates fro m th e Lord. How this is so is explained in late r chapters
lravaye-unto the originnl created being; muhyanti- are iUusioncd ; yal- of this work. This work is described by i\lahaprabhu Sri Caitnnya as the
about whom; siiraya{l.-great sages and demigods; Leja[1-firc; oori-water; spo tless P1trii!ta because it contains the transcendental narration of the
mrdiim-earth; yathii- as much as; vinimaya{l.-action and reaclio n; yatra- Personality of Godhead Sri Km• a. The historv of the S rimad -Bhiigavatam
whcrcupo n; tri-sarga{1- lhree modes of crea tion, creative faculties; amr§ii- is also very glori ous. It was compiled by Sri Vyasadcva after he had
almost factual; dhiimnii- along with all transcendental paraphernalia; svena a ttained maturity in transcendental knowledge. li e wro te this under the
-self-sufficientl y; sadii- always; nirasta- negatio n by absence; kultakam- instructions of Sri Naradaji, his spiritual master. Vyasadeva co mpiled all
illusion ; satyam- truth ; pamm-absolute; dhimalti- 1 do meditate upo n. Vedic literatures containi ng the four divisio ns of the Vedas. the Vediinta-
siil.ras o r the /Jmhma-siitras, the Puriipa.s. the illahiibhiimta, and so o n. But
ncverthekss he was no t satisfied. Ilis dissatisfaction was obser"cd by his
TRANS LATION spiritual mas ter, and thus Narada advised him to write o n the transcen-
I offer my obeisances unto Lord Sri Kr~pa, son of Vasudeva, who is the dental activi ties of Lo rd Sri K!lJ!ta. These transcende ntal activi ties are
supreme all-pervading Personality of Godhead. I meditate upon Him, the dcscrib1:d s pecifi cally in the Te nth Canto of this work. But , in order to
transcendent reality, who is the prnueval cause of all causes, from whom reach to the very substance, one must proceed gradually by developing
all manifes ted unive t·ses arise, in whom they dwell and by whom they are knowledge of the cntcgories.
destroyed. I meditate upon that ete rnnlly effulgent Lord who is directly It is na tural that a philosophical mind wants to know about the origin
and indirectly conscious of all manifestations and yet is beyond them. It is of the creation. At night he sees the stars in the sky, and he naturally
He only who first imparted Vedic knowledge unto the heart of Orahma, speculates about their .inhabitants. Such inquiries arc na tural fo r man
the firs t created being. Through llim this world, like a mirage, appears real because man has a developed conscio usness which is higher than that nf
even to great s:tgcs and demigods. Occause of llim, the material universes, the animals. The author of S rimad-8/uigauatam gives a direct answer to
2 Srimad-Bhigavata m [Canto 1, Ch 1
such inquiries. He says that the Lord Sri Kr?!!a is the origin of all crea tions. Personality of Godhead eternally exists \vilh His transcendental paraphcr·
He is not only th e creator of the universe, but the destroyer as well. The nalia.
manifested cosmic nature is created at a certain period by the will of the The chief engineer of a complicated construction does not personally
Lord. It is maintained for some time, and then it is annihilated by His will. take part in the construction, but he knows every nook and corner
Therefore, the supreme will is behind all cosmic activities. Of course, there because everything is done under his direction. He knows e\crything
are atheists of various catagories who do not believe in a creator, but that about the construction, both directly and indirectly. Similarly, the Person-
is due to a poor fund of knowledge. The modern scientist , for example, ality of Godhead who is the supreme engineer of this cosmic creation
has created space satellites, and by some arrangement or other, these knows every nook and corner, although affairs arc being carri ed out by
satellites are thr.own into outer space to fly for some time at th e control demigods. Beginning from Brahmii down to the insignificant ant, no one is
of the scientist who is far away. Similarly, aU the universes 'vith innumer· independent in the material creation. The hand of the Lord is seen
able stars and planets are controlled by the intelligence of the Personality everywhere. All material elements as well as all spiritual sparks emanate
of Godhead. from Him only. And whatever is created in this material world is but
In Vedic literatures, it is said that the Absolute Truth, Personality of the interaction of two energies, the material and the spiritual, which
Godhead, is the chief amongst all living personalities. All living beings emanate from the Absolute Truth, the Personality of Godhead, Sri Kr?!la.
begir,ning from the first created being, Brahmii, down to the smallest ant A chemist can manufacture water in the chemical laboratory by mixing
are individual living beings. And above Brahma, there are even other living hydrogen and oxygen. But, in reality, the living entity works in the
beings with individual capacities, and the Personality of Godhead is also laboratory under the direction of the Supreme Lord. And the materials
a similar living being. And He is an individual as are the other living beings. with which he works are also supplied by the Lord. The Lord knows
But the Supreme Lord or the supreme living being has the greatest everything directly and indirectly, and He is cognizant of all minute details,
intelligence, and He possesses supermost inconceivable energies of all and He is fully independent. lie is compared with the mine of gold, and
di~fereE_~ varieties. If a man's brain can produce a space satellite, one cun the cosmic creations in so many different forms are compared with
very easily imagine how brains higher than man can !Jroduce similarly objects made from the gold, such as gold rings, necklaces and so on. The
wonderful things which are far superior. The reasonable person will easily gold ring and the gold necklace are qualitatively one with the gold in the
accept this argument, but there are stubborn atheists who would never mine, but quantitatively the gold in the mine is different. Therefore, the
agree. Srila Vyasadeva, however, at once accepts the supreme intelligence Absolute Truth is simultaneously one and different. Nothing is absolutely
as the parame5vara. He offers his respectful obeisances unto the supreme equal with the Absolute Truth, but at the same Lime, nothing is independent
intelligence addressed as the para or the paramefvara or the Supreme of the Absolute Truth.
Personality of Godhead. And that paramdvara is Sri Kmta, as admitted Conditioned souls beginning from Brahrnii, who engineers the entire
in Bhagavad·gitti and other scriptures ddivered by Sri Vyiisadeva and universe, down to the insignificant ant, are all creating, but none of them
specifically in this $rimad·Bhtiguvatam. In Bhagavad·gitii, the Lord says are independent of the Supreme Lord. The materialist wrongly thinks that
that there is no other Para·tattva (summum bonum) than Himself. There· there is no creator o ther than his own self. This is called mtiyii, or illusion.
fore, Sn Vyasadeva at once worships the Para·Lattva, Sri Kr~!la, whose Because of his poor fund of knowledge, the materialist cannot see beyond
transcendental activities are describr.d in the Tenth Canto. the purview of his imperfect senses, and thus he thinks that matter
Unscrupulous persons go immediately to the Tenth Canto and especially automatically takes its own shape \vithout the aid of a superior intelligence.
to th e five chapters which describe the Lord's rtiM dance. This portion of This is refu ted in this ~loka by Snla Vyasadcva: "Since the complete
the Srimad·BirOgavatam is the most confidential part of this great literature. whole or the Absolute Truth is the source of everything, nothing can be
Unless one is thoroughly accomplished in the transcendental knowledge independent of the body of the Absolute Truth." Whatever happens to
of the Lord, one is sure to misunderstand the Lord's worshipable transcen· the body quickly becomes known to the embodied. Similarly, the creation
dental pastimes called rasa dance and His love affairs with the gopis. This is the body of the absolute whole. Therefore, the Absolute knows every·
subject matter is highly spiritual, and only the liberated persons who have thing directly and indirectly that happens in the creation.
gradually attained to the stage of paramahariwl can transcendentally relish In the Sruti mantra, it is also stated that the absolute whole or Ornhman
this riisa dance. Srilu Vyasadeva therefore gives the reader the chance to is the ultimate source of everything. Everything emanates from llim, and
gradually develop spiritual realization before actually relishing the essence everything is maintained by Him. And al the end, everything enters into
of the pastimes of the Lord. Therefore, he purposely invokes a Gtiyatri Him. That is the law of nature. In the Smrli mantra, the same is confirmed.
mantra, dhimahi. This Gtiyatri mantra is meant for spiritually advanced It is said that the source from which everything emanates at the beginning
people. When one is successful in chanting the Gtiyatri mantra, he can of Brahma's millennium, :md the reservoir to which everything ultimately
enter into the transcendental position of the Lord. One must therefore enters, is the Absolute Truth or Brahman. Material scientists take it for
acquire brahminical qualities or be perfectly situated in the quality of granted that the ultimate source of the planetary system is the sun, but
goodness in order to chant the Gtiyatri mnntra successfully and then they are unable to explain the source of the sun. Herein, the ultimate
attain to the stage of transcendentally realizing the Lord, His name, His source is explained. According to the Vedic literatures, Brahmii, who may
fame, His qualities and so on. be compared to the sun, is not the ultimate creator. It is staled in this
Srimad-Bhiigavatam is the narration of the svariipa of the Lord mani· §loka that Brahma was taught Vedic knowledge by the Personality of
fcsted by His internal potency, and this potency is distingutshed from Godhead. One may argue that Brahma, being the original living being,
the external potency which has manifested the cosmic world, which is could not be inspired because there was no other being living at that time.
within our experience. Srila Vyasadcva makes a clear distinction between Herein it is stated that the Supreme Lord inspired the secondary creator,
the two in this~loka. SriVyasadeva says herein that the manifested internal Brahmii, in o rder that Brahmii could carry out his creative functions. So,
potency is real , whereas the external manifested energy in the form of the supreme intelligence behind all creations is the Absolute Godhead, Sn
material existence is only temporary and illusory like the mirage in the Kr?!la. In Bhagavad·gittl, Lord Sri Kr?!!a states that it is He only who super·
desert. In the desert mirage there is no actual water. There is only the intends the creative energy, prakrti, which constitutes the totality of
appearance of water. Real water is somewhere else. The manifested cosmic matter. Therefore, Sri Vyiisadeva does not worship Brahmii, but the
cr~alion appears as reality. But reality, of which this is but a shadow, is in Supreme Lord, who guides Brahmii in his creative activities. In this sloka,
the spiritual world. Absolute Truth is in the spiritual sl(y, not the material the particular words abhijiia~ and svarii~ arc significant. These I wo words
sky.ln the material sky everything is relative truth. That is to say, one truth distinguish the Supreme Lord from all the other living entities. o other
depends on something else. This cosmic creation results from interaction living entity is either abhijiiafr or svarii~. 'amely, no one is either fully
of the three modes of nature, and the temporary manifestations arc so cognizant or fully independent. Even Brahma has to meditate upon the
crea ted as to present an illusion of reality to the bewildered mind of t he Supreme Lord in order to create. Then what to speak of great scientists
conditioned soul, who appears in so many species of life, including the like Einstein! The brains of such a scientist ore cer tainly not the products
higher demigods, like Brahma,lndra, Cundra, and so on. ln actuality, there of any human being. Scientists cannot manufacture such a brain, and
is no reality in the manifested world. There appears to be reality, however, what to speak of foolish atheists who defy the authority of the Lord?
because of the true reality which exists in lhe spiritual world, where the Even Mayiiviidi impersonalists who flatter themselves that they can become
Text 2) Questions b y t he Sages 3
one with the Lord are neither abhijiia{l nor Sl)(lrii!. Such impersonalists and pure sex psychology (adi:rasa), devoid of all mundane inebriety. The
undergo severe austerities to acquire knowledge to become one with the whole material creation i& moving under the principle of se:r life. In
Lord. But ultimately they become dependent on some rich disciple who modern civilization, sex life is the focal point for all activities. Wherever
supplies them with money to build monasteries and temples. Atheists like one turns his face, he sees sex life predominant. There fore, sex life is not
Riivat•a or lliraJ.I yakasipu had to undergo severe penances before they unreal. Its reality is experienced in the spiritual world. The material sex
could fl out the authority of the Lord. But ultimately, they were rendered life is but a perverted reflection of the original fact. The original fact is in
helpless and cou ld not save themselves when the Lord appeared before the Absolute Truth, and thus the Absolute Truth cannot be impersonal.
them as cruel death. This is also the case with the modern atheists who It is not possible to be impersonal and contain pure sex life. Consequently,
also dare to flout the authority of the Lord. Such atheists will be dealt the impersonalist philosophers have given indirect impetus to the abomi·
with simi larly, for history repeats itself. Whenever men neglect the nable mundane sex life because they have overstressed the impersonality of
authority of the Lord, nature and her laws are there to penalize them. Thi.s the ultimate truth. Consequently, man without information of the actual
is confirmed in Bhagal)(ld·gitii in the wcll-kuown \Crse: yadii yadii hi spiritual form of sex has accepted perverted material sex life as the all in
dlwrmasya gliini{l. "Whenever there is a decline of dharma and a rise of all. There is a distinction between sex life in the diseased material condi·
adlwrma, 0 Arjuna, then I incarnate :\lyself." (Bg. 4.7) tion :md bpi ritual sex life.
That the Supreme Lord is aU-perfect is confirmed in all $ruti mantros. This $n-mad-Bhiigavatam \viU gradually elevate the unbia...<ed reader to
It iti said in the $ruti mantros that the all-perfect l.ord threw a glance over the highest perfectional stage of transcendence. It will enable him to tran·
matter and thus created all living beings. The living beings are parts and scend the three modes of material activitic:s: fmitivc actions. speculative
parcels of the Lord, and He impregnates the vast mat erial creation with philosophy,and worship of functional deities as inculcated in Vedic verses.
seeds of spiritual sparks. and thus the crea tive energies arc set in motion to
enact so many wonderful creations. An atheist may argue that God is no TEXT 2
more expert thun a watchmaker, but of course Cod is greater because lie
can create 1nachincs in duplicate mal e unci female forms . The male and ~: sil~a"a•i't~ WIT rM~e<tOii ffiri
female fo rms of different types of machineries go on producing innumer- ~~ ~ ftl~(flq!ifftl .. '{80,~
able similar machines without Cod's further allentiou. If a man could
manufacture such a set of machine$ that could produce other machines
without his nllcntion, then he could approuch till' intelligence of God.
'£fl'4'f:l•l<tij '4ii15f.1tij iff tffiTJil<:
ijtft (Q<t(lGttijs;r ifirilr: 'l~~ II ~ II
But that is not possible, for each machine has to be handled individually.
Therefore, no one can create as well as God. Another name for God is dharma{! projjhita-kaitavo'tra paromo nirmatsarii[Uim satom
asmaurdlla, which means that no one is C<(Ual to or greater than llim. vedyam uiistavam atra I)(ISIU Jil)(ldam topa-trayonmiilanam
Parom sa/yam, or the Supreme Tmth, is B<· who has no equal or superior. in-mad bhiigavate malliimuni·krte kitil vii parair iSvara{l
This is confi rm!'d in thc$mti mantras. lt is suid that before the c reation of sadyo hrdy avamdllyate 'tra krtibllql iusril~ubhi& tatk~{tiil.
the matcriul universe there existed tlw Lord only, who is master of every·
one. Tha i Lord instructed Brahmii in Vedic knowledge. That Lord has to dhamw{l- rcligiosity; projjhita-completely rejected; kai.tal)(l{l-covered
be obeyed in all respects. Anyone who wuuls to get rid of the material by fruitive intention; atra-herein; paromaft- thc highest; nirmatsarii{tiim-
entanglement must surrender unto llim. This is also confirmed iu of the one hundred percent pure in heart; satiim-devotees; vcdyam-
8/wgauad·gitli. undcrstnndahle; viistavam-factual; atra- llerein; uastu-substancc; sil)(ldam
Unless one surrenders unto the lotus fc<·t of the Supreme Lord, il is - well-being; liipa-tmya-three-fold miseries; unmulanam-i:ausing uprooting
certain thai he will be bewildered. When an intclligt'nt man surrendt·rs of; inmat-beautiful; bltiigal)(lte-thc Blliigal)(lta Puriira; mahiimuni-the
unto thl! lotus feet of Kr-1!1a and knows completely that Kr~!la is the cause great sage (Vyiisadeva); krte-having compiled; kim-what is; oo- the
of aU causes, as confirmed in Bllagal)(ld-gitii, then only can such an intelli· need; paroi{l-others; iSvaro~-the Supreme Lord; sadya~-at once; llrdi-
gent man become a malliitm.ii or great soul. But such a great soul is rardy within the heart; al)(lrudhyate-become compact; aim-herein; krtiblli{l -
set•n. Only the malliitmiis can understand that the Su preme Lord is lht· by the piOUS men; SUSri4Ubhi{l-by CUlture; tat-kJa{tiit-without delay.
primt•v:•l tau,;e of all creations. l-Ie is parama or ultimate truth because all
other truth;, an• rdalivc to llim. He is omniscient. For llim, there is no TRANSLATION
Some Miiyuviidi scholars argue that $rimad-1Jitiigal)(ltam was not com· Completely rejecting all religious activities which are materially moti·
vated, t his Bhagavata Pur~a propounds the highest truth , whjch is u nder·
pil<:d by Sri Vyitsadcva. And some of them suggest that this book is a
modern creation writleta by someone named Vopadeva. In order to refute standablc by those d evotees who are p ure in heart. The highest truth is
such meaningless arguments, Sri Sridhara Sviimi points out that there is reality distinguish ed from illusion for t he welfare o f all. Such truth uproots
reference to the llhiigavatam in many of the oldest Puriiras. Tltis first th e th reefold miseries. This beautiful Bhiigavatam, compiled by the great
sloka of the Uluigauatam begins with the Ciiyaln mantra. There is refer· sage Sri Vyasadeva, is sufficient in il8elf for God realization. As soon as one
t•nct• to this in the .llatsya Ptuiira, which is the oldest Purii[la. In that attentively and submissively hears the message of Bhagavatam, he becomcs
Purii11a, it i;, •aid with reference to the Gayatn mantra in the Bhiigal)(l/am attached to t he Supreme Lord.
that there arc many narrations of spiritual instructions beginning with the
Gayatn nwntra. And there is the history of Vrtr:isura. Anyone who makes PURPORT
a gift of this great work on a full moon day attains to the highest perfcc· Religion includes four primary subjects, namely pious activities, eco·
lion of life hy returning to Go~head. There is reference to the Blliigavatam nomic development, satisfaction of the senses, and finally liberation from
in utlwr PuriifWS, also, where it is dearly stalt'd that this work was finished matcrinl Londagc. Irreligious life is a barburous cond ition. Indeed, human
in twelve cn ntos which includ e 18,000 s/olws. In the Padma Puriirw also life bebrins when religion begins. Eating, sleeping, fearing, and muting arc
lht•rc is n·fcr.,n cc lo the Blliigavatam in a conversation b etween Gautama th e four principles of animal life. These nrc common both to animals and
and Jllnhiiriija Amllllri~a. The King was advised th erein to read regu larly lo human beings. But religion is the extra function of the human being.
$rimad-/Jlrtigavatam if he desired lihcra tiou from matt~rial bondage. Under Without religion, human life is uo better than animal life. Therefore, in
the <'ircumstum·cs, there is no doubt about the authority of the Bhiiga- human societies there is some form of religion which aims at self-realization
IXrlam. Within the past 500 years, many erudi te scholars and iiciiryas like and which mul,.c:; reference to man's eternal relationship with God.
Jiva Gooviimi, Saniit:ma Gosviimi, ViSvanatha Cakravarti, VaUabhaclirya, In the lower stages of human civilization, there is always competition
and many other distinguished scholars even after the Lime of Lord Caitanya to lord it over the material nature or, in other words, there is a continuous
made elaborate commentaries on the /JIIiigal)(llam. \nd the serious student rivalry to satisfy the senses. Driven Ly ouch consciousness, man turns to
would do well to attempt to go through them to better reli~h the lransccn· religion. lie thus performs pious activities or religious functions in order
dental messages. to gain something material. But if surh material gains are obtainable in
Srila Vi§vaniitha Cakravarti Thakur specifically deals with the original ot her ways, then so-called religion is neglected. This is the >iluation in
4 Srimad-Bhagavatam (Canto 1, Ch I

modern civilization. ~Jan is thriving economically, so at pr<'>('llt he is not lw at once become:- free from all miseries. As lo11g as Lhe living enlit) is
very interested in religion. Churches, mosques or temples are now practically trying to nHI>ter makrial nature. there is no possibility of his becoming
vacanl. ~len arc more interested in factories, shops, and cinemas than in <'('nant of the Supreme. Sen ie(' to the Lord is rendered in pure conscious-
religious places which were erected by their forefathers. This practically lit'->~ of one·~ opirillml id('ntit): b~ ~nicf' one is immediately freed from
proves that religion is pcrfonm·d for some economic gains. Economic material encumbrance~.
gains are needed for sense gratification. Often when one is baffled :n the 0\l'r and abo1c thi•. $n"mad-Bhiigamlam is a personal commentation
pursuit of sense gratification, he takes to salvation and tries to become on the Vedanta-siitra b) Sri Vyasadeva.lt is written in the maturity of hi~
one with the Supreme Lord. Consequen tly, all these states are simply spi ritual life through the mere) of "\arada. Sri Vyasade\'a is the authorized
different types of scnse gratification. incarnation of i'/iirfi) a!la, the Per.;onality of Godhead. Therefore, there i.s
In the Vedas, the above mentioned four acti\~ties are prescribed in the no question as to his authority. lie is the author of aU other Vedic litera·
regulative way so that there will not be any undue competition for sen..<e ll<n·~. )Cl he recommend;; the ~tudy of .Srimad-Bhiigar.:atam above all others.
gratification. But $rimad-Biuigaootam is transcendental to all these sense In other Purii!'as there arc different methods set forth by which one can
gratificatory activities. It is purely transcendental literature which can be worship the demigods. But in the Hhiigamtam only the Supreme Lord i,
understood only by the pure devotees of the Lord who are transcendental mentionrd. The• Suprcmr Lord is the total body. and the demigods are the
to competitive sense gratification. lu the material world there is keen different parts of tlwt body. Consequently, by worshiping the Supreme
competition between animal and animal, man and man, community and Lord, 011c docs not ncNI to worship the demigods. The Supreme Lord
community, nation and nation. But the devotees of the Lord rise above become~ fix(•d in the heart of the devotee immediately. Lord Caitanya
such compctitious. They do not com pete \vilh the materialist because ~Jahfiprabhu has recommrndcd the $rimad-Bhiiga~;atam as the spotless
they are o n the path back to Godhead where life is eternal and blissful. Puni!la and distinguishes it from all other Puriirras.
Such lransccndcnlnlists arc noncnvious and pure in heart. In the material The proper method for receiving Lhis transcendental message is to hear
world, everyone is envious of everyone else, and therefore there is it submissively. A challenging attitude cannot help one realize Lhis transcen·
competitio n. But the t rnnscendcntal devotees of the Lord are not only dental mcssu;;c. One particular word is used herein for proper guidance.
free from material envy, but they arc well-wishers to everyone, and they This word is su§rii~tl. One must be anxious to hear this transcendental
strive to establish a compctitionless society '~ith God in the center. The mcssugc. The desir<• to sincerely hear is the first qualification.
contemporary socialist's concep tion of a competiti onless society is artificial Lcs.< fortunate persons ;Jr(: 110t at all interested in hearing this $rimad-
because in the socialist state there is competition for the post of dictator. Bhiigallolam. The procrss is simple, but the application is difficult.
From the point of view of th e Vedas or from the point of view of common Unfortunate peoplr find enough Lime to hear idle, social, political convcr·
human activities, sense gratification is the basis of material Life. There are s.1tion~. but wht•n imitcd to allcnd a meeting of devotees to hear $rimad·
three paths mentioned in the Vedas. One im•oh·es fruitive activities to Bllii~aualam tlu·) 'ueldt•nly be·<·o11w rduetant. Sometimes professional
gain promotion to better planctti. Another involves worshiping diff<"rcnl rearl!'r. of tlw /Jiuigamlam inunediatC'I) plunge into the confidential topic,
demigod:. for promotion to the planets of the demigods. and another of the pa,time of tht• Sup rem(' Lord." hich they seemingly interpret a.>
involve:. realizing the \hsolut(' Truth and lib impersonal feature and w..; litcralurc.$rimad-lJhiigatJQ/am i' meant to be heard from the beginning.
becomi11g one with llim. Those who ar<' fit to as:.imilatc this work arc mentioned in this slolia:
The irnpt'r>Onal aspect of LIH' \!)solute Truth i;, 1101 the highc.>t. Above '·One hrcom•·, <Jt<:<lifit•d to hear $rimad-Biu1gauatam after many pious
the impcrwnal feature is the Paramtitmti feature. and abo\e this there i~ derd~." The intrlli~cnl pcn-ou by thou~rhtful discretion can be as.ured b)
the p<'r;onal fcatun• of the t\btiolutc Truth or 8/wgat'(ill. $n"mad-8htigavalam the great .,.,gc Y)5l>:ldc\a th:1t he can realize the upreme Personalit~
~vcs informatiun about the Absolute Truth in llis personal feature. II is dircctl) b) hearin;:: $n"mad-llllagat'Olam. Without undergoing the different
high•·r than impcnoonulisl litcrut••rc~; a11d higher than the jfiiina-kiirpa stages of realization bo•t forth in the Vedas. one can be lifted immediate!}
divi:.ion of tlw Vedas. It is even higher tlw11 the kurma-ktir!la division. and to the position of paramalrmi1sa sirnpl) b) agreeing to receive this me...sage.
even highrr than the upa~orw-kii[<fla divi~ion bccautie it recommends the
worship of the Supreme Pcr~on:•lity of Godhead, Lord Sri K~~l)a. In the TEXT 3
karma-kri!•rla, there is competition to reach hcavculy planets for b<'ttcr
~cnsc gratification, and there is similar competi tion in the jfiiina-kiirfla aud f.t•r•Ni.,-qau.ttea ~
the upo~arw·kiipfla. Th•· .~rimad-11/uigavatum i" superior to all of thc·sc 'W'i~~<Hi~ I
because it aims at the Suprr<nc Truth which is the substance or the root of
all calegorit•s. From !;rimad-Biuigavatam uuc c·u n crtmc to know the sub· fir.RI ~ ~
stance as well tts the ctt tcgo ries. Tlw substan ce is the Absolu te Truth , the ~~if.~'~: II~ II
Supn·nw l.onl, ami ull cmaHutioHs are rt·lnt ivc- forms of energy.
No thin~ i$ apart fro111 tlw suh;,tam'<'• lmt ut the ~:nne lime the energies r<i[!.l<lllll·krliJII<·Itrror galilwil plwlarit
· an· diff;·rc·u t from the substance. This !'onct•ptiou is not contradictory. ~uha·mllklllid umrta-draua-sariryulam
Srimnd·Uhiigavatam <·xplit·it ly promulgates this ;.imultancously one and pibata bl<iigatJQ/arn rasom iilayam
different philosophy of the· VPdcin ta-sii.tru, which begins with the 'jan· mulwr a/111 rasikri blruvi blliiuukii[<.
mtidy asya" siilra.
This knowledge of the energy of the Lord bci11g simultaneously om· uigama- thc Ve•dic litt•raturc.>; kalJJO·Iarofr- the desire-tree; galitam-
and different from the Lord is :m an~w('r to lhl' mental speculators' fully matured; plralam fruit; Juha-~rila Sukadeva Gosvami. th e original
attempt to t'$lnblish th e t'ncrt,'Y at. the \b~olu te. \\'hen this knowlcdgp i;, speaker of $rimad-Biriigai'Otam: mulilltit- from the lips of: omrta-ncclar;
factually undcr~lood, one .ec.> the· !'On<:e•ption;, of monism and dualism to draoo- >cmi--olid and ,oft and tht·n•forc l'a>il) ,wallowable: sariryulam-
be imperfcl't. Den·lopmcHl of this lran;.c('ndental coni'Ciou;ness grounded perfrcl in all rc~pecls; pibata do relh•h it; blriigaootam-the book dealing
in tlw conl'cption of ~imultancously one and different leads one immcdi- in the >Cierwr of the ett•rnal relation with the Lord: msam- juicc (that
at<"ly to thl.! stage of fr('cdom from the tllr('<'fold mi..crie». The threefold \\ hich i' rcJi,h:tblc); iilayam- until libt•r.ttioll. or e11~n in a lilwratcd con·
miscric~ arc 1.) thm;e mi<:cries which ari'C from the mind and bod), 2.) dition; muhufr al"il)": aho 0: ro~iliiifr-tho:'e \\ho an' full in the kilO\•·
those miseries innictcd b) other living bdn~r->, and 3.) tho:;c mi<crie;, ledge of rrwllo"': blrlll·i- ou tlw t':trlh: blriivttkti[r-cxperl and thoughtful.
arising from natural rata~lrophcs ov.:r \1 hieh one has no control. $rimad-
BhiigmKILam lwgins with tlw ~urrcndt•r of the de,okc unto the Absolute
Prr>on. Tlw clcvolc'•• i$ full> nwnn· that ht• i;, one with lh(' \b:>olule and at
th e ;,amc tinw in tlw etcrnnl IW>itiou of M·nanl to the Absolute. In the Know, 0 thoughtful men, that Srimad-Bhagavatam is the mature fruit
material con<·c·ption, om· fal,dy thinks himt<t•lf the lord of all he surveys. of the tree of Vedic literature~<. It emanated from the li ps of Sri Sukndcva
nnd therefore he i~ always lrouhh-11 b) tht• threefold miseries of life. Hut Cosvumi. 1l1crcfore thiR nectnrean fruit is all the more relishable by
as soon as one c·omc> to know hi~ rt•al position as lran~cenclental servan t, liberated souls.
Text4] Questions by the ~es 5
PURPORT to hear the message from the right source. $rimad-Bhiigavatam is exactly
In the two previous slokas it has been definitely proved that the Snmad- received from the right source. It was brought by Narada l\1uni from the
Bhagavatam is the sublime literature which surpasses all other Vedic spiritual world and given to his disciple Sri Vyasadeva. The latter in tum
scriptures due to its transcendental qualities. It is transcendental to all delivered the message to his son Srila Sukadeva Gosvami, and Sri! a Sukadeva
mundane activities and m~Jndanc knowledge. In this sloka it is stated that Gosvami delivered the message to Maharaja Pan"k~it just seven days before
$rinwd-Bitagavatam is no~ .only a superior literature, but that it is the the King's death. Srila Sukadeva Cosvami was a liberated soul from his
ripened fruit of all Vedic li"teratures. In other words, it is the cream of all very birth. He was liberated even in the womb of his mother, and he did
Vedic knowledge. Considering aU this, patient and submissive hearing is not undergo any sort of spiritual training after his birth. At birth no one
definitely essential. With great respect and attention, one should receive is qualified, neither in the mundane nor the spiritual sense. But Sri
the message and )essons imparted by the $rinwd-Bhiigavatam. Sukadeva Gosvami, due to his being a perfectly liberated soul, did not have
The Vedas are compared to the desire tree because they contain all to undergo an evolutionary process for spiritual realization. Yet despite
things knowable by man. They deal 'vith mundane necessities as weU as his being a completely liberated person situated in the transcendental
spiritual realizati on. The Vedas contain regulated principles of knowledge position above the three material modes, he was attracted to this transcen-
covering social, political, religious, economic, military, medicinal, chem ical, dental rasa of the Supreme Personality of Godhead who is adored by
physical and metaphysical subject matter and all that may be necessary to liberated souls who sing Vedic hymns. The Supreme Lord's pastimes are
keep the body and soul together. Above and beyond all this are specific more attractive to liberated souls than to mundane people. He is of
directions for spiritual realization. Regu lated knowledge involves a gradual necessity not impersonal because it is only possible to carry on transcen·
r:1ising of.thc living entity to the spiritual platform, and the highest spiritual dental rasa with a person.
realization is to know that the Personality of Godhead is the reservoir of In the Srimad-Bhiigavatam the transcendental pastimes of the Lord are
aU spiritual tastes or rasas. narrated, and the narration is systematically depicted by Srila Sukadeva
Every living entity, beginning from Brahmli, the first-born living being Gosvami. Thus the subject matter is appealing to all classes of persons,
with in th e material world, do,vn to the insignificant ant, desires to relish including those who seek liberation and those who seek to become one
sornc sort of taste derived from sense perceptions. These sensual pleasures \vith the supreme whole.
are technical ly called rasas. Such rasas are of different varieties. In lhe ln Sahskril the parrot is also known as suka. When a ripened fruit is cut
revealed scriptures the foll owing twelve varieties of rasas are en umerated: by the red beaks of such birds, its sweet flavor is enhanced. The Vedic
I) randra (anger) 2) adblwta (wonder) 3) S[ligiira (conjugal love) 4) hiisya fruit which is mature and ripe in knowledge is spoken through the lips of
(comedy) !l) vira (chiva lry) 6) dayii (mercy) 7) diisya (servitorship) Srila Sukadeva Cosvami, who is compared to the parrot not for his ability
8) saklt_ya (fratern ity) 9) blwyiinaka (horror) 10) vibhatsa (shock) 11) to recite the Bhiigavatam exactly as he heard it from his learned father,
santa (neut rality) 12) viitsalya (parenthood). but for his ability to present the work in a manner that would appeal to
Tl11: sum total of :til these rasas is call ed affc;ction or love. Primarily, all classes of men.
such signs of love· arc manifested in adoration, service, friendship, eternal The subject matter is so presented through the lips of $rila Sukadeva
affection, aud conjugal love. And when these fi ve arc aiJsent,lovc is present Gosvami that any sincere listener that hears submissively can at once
in!l ircctly in anger, wonder, comedy, chivalry, ft:ar, shock and so on. For relish transcendental tastes which are distinct from the perverted tastes
example, wl11:n a nu1n is in love with a woman, the rasa is called conjugal of the matc.rial world. The ripened fruit is not dropped all of a sudden from
love. But when such love affairs nrc disturbed there may be wonder, anger, the highest planet of K~!laloka. Rather, it has come down carefully
shock, or even horror. Sometimes love affairs between two persons cui· through the chain of disciplic succession' \vithout change or disturbance.
rn inate in ghas tly murd er scenes. Such rasas are displayed between man Foolish people who arc not in the transcendental disciplic succession
and mtlll aud between animal and animal. There is no possibility of an commit great blunders by trying to understand the highest transcendental
\:xchan gc of rasa between a man aucl au an imal or between a man and any rasa known as the riisa dance without following in the footsteps of Suka-
ot her species o f living beings within I he material world. The rasas are deva Gosvami, who presents this fruit very carefuUy by stages of transcen-
cxthan ~ed Lei ween members of the same species. But as far as the spirit denlal realization. One should be· intelligent to know the position of
souls ure concern\:d, I hey arc one qualitatively with the Supreme Lord. $rimad-8lliigavatam by considering personalities like Sukadeva Gosvli.rni,
Thrn·forc, the rasas were o riginall y exchanged between the spiritual living who deals \vith the subject so carefully. This process of disciplic succession
being and lhc spiritual whole. the Supreme Personality of God head. The of the Bhagavata school su~ests that in the fu lure also Srinwd-Bhiigavatam
spiri tual exchange or rasa is fully exhibited in spiritual existence between has to be understood from a person who is factually a representative of
living beings and the Supreme Lord. Srila Sukadeva Cosvami. A professional man who makes a business out of
The Supreme Personality of Godhead is therefore described in the reciting the Bhiigavatam illegally is certainly not a representative of Suka-
$roti mantras, Vedic hymns, as " the fountainhead of all rasas." When one ocva Gosviimi. Such a man's business is only to earn his livelihood. There·
associates with the Supreme Lord and exchanges one's constitutional rosa fore one should refrain from hearing the lectures of such professional men.
\vith the Lord, then the living being is actually happy. Such men usually go to the rnoS! confidential part of the literature \vithout
These $roti mantras indicate that every living being has its constitutional undergoing the gradual process of understanding this grave subject. They
position which is endowed \vith a particular type of rasa which is to be usually plunge into the subject matter of the rii$a dance, which is misun·
exchanged \vith the Personality of Godhead. In the liberated cond ition dcrstood by the foolish class of men. Some of them take this to be
only, this primary rasa is experienced in full. In the material existence, the immoral, while others try to cover it up by their own Stuj?id interpreta-
rasa is experienced in the perverted form, which is temporary. And thus tions. They have no desire to follow in the footsteps of Srila $ukadeva
the rasas o f the materia l world are exh ibited in the material form of raudra Cosvami.
(anger) and so on. One should conclude, therefore, that the serious student of the 1'll$a
Thcrt:forc, o ne who attains. full knowledge of these different rasas, should receive the message of Bhiigar;atam in the chain of disciplic suc-
which arc the basic principles of activ ities, can understand the false rcpre· cession from Srila Sukadeva Gosvami, who describes the Bhiigavatam from
scn latio ns of the o riginal rasas which are renccted in the material world. its very beginning and not whimsically to satisfy the mundaner who has
The l<:arncd scholar seeks to relish the real rasa in the spiritual form. In the very little knowledge in transcendental science. Srimad-Bhiigavatam is so
begi nning he desires to become onr with the Supreme. Thus, intelligent <'.arefully presented that a sincere and serious person can at once enjoy the
lrunsccrulcntalists cannot go beyond this conception of becoming o ne ripened fruit of Vedic knowledge simply by drinking the nectarean juice
with the spirit whole, without knowing of the d ifferent rasas. through the mouth of Sukadeva Gosvfuni or his bona fide representative.
In this sloka, it is definitely stated that spiritual rasa, which is relished
even in the liberated stage, can be experienced in the literature of the TEXT4
$rimad-Bltiigavatam due to its being the ripened fruit of all Vedic know-
ledge. By submissively hearing I his transcendental literature, one can ~sf.l(l{q~~ ~: ~..,..,~~:I
attain the: fnll pleasure of his heart 's desire. But, one must be very carefu l ~ ~·n~l.'il..-1~ 6((i(Q4tq1Efd II \l II
6 Srimad-Bhagavatam (Canto 1, Ch 1

naimi.'e 'nimi.§ak§etre ta ekadii tu munayaft

[§aya{1 ~aunakiidaya{1 priitar lruta-hutiigrtay a{t
satrath svargiiy alokiiya 3atkrtam sutam ii3illam
salrasra-samam iisata paprocchur idam iidariit
naim4e- in the forest known as Naim~a!lya; animi§a-k~etre-lhe s pot le-the sages; ekadii-onc day; tu-bul; munayu[t-sagcs: priitaft- mo ruing;
which is especially a favorite of Vi~!IU (who does no t close His eydids); lrrtla- burning; lruta-<~gna_ya{r - th e sacrificial fire; sat-krtam- rlu c respec ts;
nayafl-sages; saunaka-adaya{1-hc aded by the sage Sa unaka; satram-sacri- sutam-Sri Siiln Gosvami; tis inam-seated on; papracchuft- rnad c inquiries;
fice; svargiiya-lhe Lo rd who is glorified. in h eaven ; lokiiya- and for the idam-ou this (as follows); tidariit-with due r<'gards.
devotees who are always in touch with the Lo rd: sallasra-one thousand ;
samam-years; ii.sata-performed. TRANSLATION

TRANSLATION One day , after finishing their morning duties by burning a sacrificial
fire and respectfully offering a seat to Srila Suta Gosvlimi, the great sages
Once, in a holy place in the forest of Naimi~a!lya, great sages headed made earnes t inquiries about the following mutters.
by the sage Saunaka assembled to perform a great thousand-year sacrifice
for the satisfaction of the Lord and His devotees. PURPORT
Morning is the best time to hold spiritual services. The great sages
offered the speaker of the /Jiriigaootam an eleva ted seal o f respect called
The prelude of the $riiTUld-Bluigavatam was spoken in the previous the Vyti3tisana, or the seal o f Sri Vyasadeva. Sri Vyiisadeva is the original
three slokas. Now the main topic of this great lite rature is being prcseutcd. spiritual preceptor for all men. And all other preceptors are considered to
$rimad-Biriigavatam, after its first recitation by Srila Sukadeva Gosvami, be his re presentatives. A re presentative is o ne who can e xac tly present the
was repeated for the second time at Naimi~ara!lya. viewpo int of Sri Vyasadeva. Sri Vyasadeva imprc., anated the message o f
In the Viiyaviya Tantra, it is said that Brahma, the engineer of this Bhiigavatam unto Srila Sukadcva Gosvlimi, and Sri Siita Gosvami heard
particular universe, contemplated a great wheel which could e nclose the it fro m him (Sri Sukad eva Gosviimi). All bo nn fide representatives of Sri
universe. The hub o f this great circle was fixed at a particular place known Vyasadeva in the chain o f disciplic su ccession arc to be understood to be
as Nuimi~ra(tya. Similarly, there is another refere nce to the forest of Gosvamis. These Gosvamis restrain all their senses, and they stick to the
Noimi~iira(lya in the Variilla Puriipa, where it is stated that by performance path made b y the previous ciciiry as. The Gosviimis do not deliver lectures
of sacrifice at this place, the strength o f demon iac people is curtailed. Thus on the Blriigavatam capriciously. Rather, they execute their services most
brolrmartas prefer N aimi~rapya fo r su ch sacrificial performances. carefully, follo wing their predecessors wh o d elivered the spiritu alrne..•sagc
The devotees o f Lord Vi~pu o ffer all kinds of sacrifices for His pleasure. unbroke n to the m.
The devotees are always attached lo service o f the Lo rd , whereas fallen Those wh o listen to the 8/tiiga oo tam may put qu estio ns to the speaker
souls are attached to the pleasures o f material e xistence. In Blragavad-gitii, in order to elicit the clear meaning, but this sho uld no t be d one in a
it is said that anything performed in the material world for any reason chall enging ~pirit. One must submit questions with a great regard fo r the
other than for the pleasure of Lord Vi~ttu causes further bondage for the speaker and th e subject matt er. This is also th e way recomme nded in
pe rformer. It is enjoined therefore that all acts must be performed sacrifi· Blragauad-gitti. One must learn the tran54cnd<' ntal subject by submissive
ciall y for the satisfaction of Vi~ttu and His devotees. This wiU bring every- aural recepti on fro m the right sources. Thert·fore these sages addressed
one peace and prosperit y. the speake r Sula Gosvami wi th great respect .
The great sages arc always anxi ous to do good to the peo ple in general,
and as such the sages headed by Saunuka and others assembled at this h oly TEXT 6
place of Naimif}ti rapya with a program of performing a great and con-
tinuous chaiu o f s:1crificial ceremo nies. Forgetful men do not kuo w the ~~:
right path for peace and prospe rity. ll o wcver, the ~ages kno w it well, aud ~ ~ ~ ~RtiiHUM ~ I
tl wrc fore for tlw good men they arc always anxious to perform acts which
umy bring about peace in the wo rld. They arc sincere friends to all living 311(.04idl<4tQtl:{\atf.1 14¥iijtt41f01 ~~~ ~ II
entities, and ut the risk of great personal inconvenience they are always
!"§aya iicu{1
engaged in th e sNvi cc of the Lord for the good o f all peo ple. Lord Vi~pu
tooyci ldwlu puriipiini
is just like a great tree, and all o thers, including the de migods, men ,
3Ctihcisiini ciinagha
Siddhas, Cara!1as, Vidyadharas and other living e ntities, are like branches,
iikhyiitiiny apy adlritiini
twigs and lea ves of that tree. By pouring water on the root o f the lrce,
dharma-S45triipi yiiny uta
all the parts o f the tree arc auto matically nourish ed . Only those branches
and leaves which arc detached canno t be so satisfied. Detached branches
nay a{r- thc sages: iicufl-said; t vayii- by you; h/ralu- undoubtcdly; purii-
und leaves dry up grndually despite all watering atte mp ts. Similarl y, human
rtiini- th l' supplements to the Vl'das with illustrn ti ve narrations; sa-itilriisiini
society, when it is de tached from the Personality of Godhead like detached
- along with the histo ries; ca -and; anaglw- frt.'cd fro m all vices; iiklrytitiini
branches and lcuvcs, is not capable o f being watered , and one atte mpting
lo do so is simpl y wasting his e nergy and resources. - explaiued ; api- although ; adhitiini- well read ; d/rarma-5/i.striipi-sc riptures
giving right directions to progressive life; y tini-allthcse: uta - said.
Th e mode rn mate ri alistic ~ociety i~ de tach ed from its relation to the
Supreme Lo rd. And all its plans which :tre being made by a theis tic leaders
are sure to be baffled in e very s tep. Ye t th ey do no t wnkc up to this. TRANSLATI ON
In this age, the congregational chunting of the holy names of the Lord The sages said: Respected Siita Gosviimi, you are completely free
is the prescribed method for wnking up. The ways nnd means :Lre most from all vice. You are well versed in all religious scriptures, the Pura!laS
scientifically prescutcd by Lord Sri Caitanya Mahiiprabhu, and intelligent and his tories, for you have gone through them under proper guidance and
persons may lake advantage o f llis teachings in order to bring about real have also explained the m.
peace and prosperity. $rimad-Bircigavatam is also presented fo r this same
purpose, and this will b e explained more specifically later in the text.
A Gosvami, or the bona fide representative o f Sri Vyasade va, must be
free from ull kinds of vices. The four major vices o f Kali-yuga urr L.) illicit
TEXT 5 conncctiou with women , 2.) animal slaught er, 3 .) int oxication , 4.) spccula-
(I ~ u ijO{lf: Slldiatdl\l~n I
Li v(' gambling o f all sorts. A Gosvami must be free from all these vices
before he can dare si t on the Vyii.sii.sana. No o ne should be allo wed to sit
~fi<1441(ftoi qSfv~RC::441C::<IIl. II ~ II on the Vyiisiisana who is not spo tless in character and who is not freed
TextlO) Questions by the Sages 7
from the above mentioned vices. He should no t o nly be freed fro m all such PURPORT
vices, but he must also be well versed in all revea led scriptures or in the
The secret of success in spiritual Life is in satisfying the spiritual master
Veda.s. The Purapas are also parts o f the Vedas. And histo ries like the and thereby ge tting His sincere blessings. Srila ViSvanatha Cakravarti
Mahabhtiraw or Ramayapa are also parts of the Vedas. The aciirya or the Thakur has sung in his famous eight sta nzas o n the spiritual master as
gosvami must be well acquainted with all thest· literatures. T o hear and follows: " I offer my respectful obeisances unto the lotus feet of my
explain them is more important than reading them. One ca n only assimi·
spiritual mas ter. Only by his satisfaction can o ne please the Personality of
late the knowl edge of the revealed seriptun·s by hearing and explaining.
Godhead , and when he is dissatisfied th ere is only havoc on the path of
Hc:•ring is called sravapa, and explaining is called hirtana. The two
spiritual realization." It is essential, therefore, that a disciple be very much
processes of .irava(W and k irlana arc of pri mary importance to progressive
obedient and submissive to the bo nn fide spiritual master . Srila Siita
spiritual life. On ly one who has properl y gr:•spcd the transce ndental
Cosviimi fulfilled all these qualifications as a disciple, and therefore he was
knowledge from the right source by submissive hearing can pro perly
endowe d with all favors by his learned and self-realized s piritual masters
explain the subject.
such as $ rila Vy asade va and others. The sages of Naimi~raraya were
TEX T 7 co nfident that Srila Suta Cosvami was bona fide. Therefo re they we re
an xious to hear from him.
~~~~~: 1
aR 'if~:~ q~l'ld'i4 ¢.t ~:II \!l II TEXT 9
yiini veda-vidiith src~~ho
bhagavan biidaraya(ta{t
anye ca nwnaya{1 sula ~tll~<tilifld: ~: m~ II ~ II
pariivara-vido vidu/r
tatra tatriiiijasii"yL'*/11011
yani- all thut; Vl' da-vidiim-scholars o f the Vedas; sre~~lta{l-seniormost ; blwvatii yad viniicitam
bhagaoo11- incaruati on of Godhead; biidaniya(la(t - Vyiisadcva ;anye- o thers; pumsam ekii11tata{t Jreyas
ca-and; munay a/t - the sages; suta- 0 Siita Cosviimi: pariivara-vida/t- tan na~ sathsitum arhasi
amongst the learned scholars, one who is conversant with physical and
metaphysical knowledge; vidu{t-one who knows. ta tra- thereof; tatra-thcreof; aiijasa- made easy; ii.YU§mall-blessed with
good d uration of life; bhavata- by your good self; yat- whatever; viniicitam
T RANSLATION -ascertained ; purhsiim-for the people in general; ekiintata{t-absolutely;
Being the eldest learned Vedantist, 0 Siita Cosvli mi, you are acquainted sreya{l - ultimate good ; tat-tha t; na{l- to us; 5oriu itum- to explain ; arho.si-
with the knowledge o f Vyiisadeva, wh o is the incarnation of Godhead , dcscrve.
and you also k now o ther sages who are fully versed in all kinds o f physical
and metaphysical knowled ge. T RANS LATI ON
Pleuse, therefore, being blessed with many years, explain to us wha t
PURPORT you ascertain to be the absolute and u)tima te good for the people in
$rimod·Hitiigavalam is a natura l commc ntuti on o n till! Braltma-sutra or general.
the "11iidariiyarw Vedanw -sutras. It is called natural bc' causc Vy iisadcva is
author of b oth Vediinta·sutras as well as Srimad-Bhfigavatam o r the PURPORT
essence o f all Vedic literatures. Besides Vylisadeva, there are o ther sages In Blwgaood·gtta, worship of the aciirya is recommended. The aciiryas
who are the authors of six different philosophical systems, namely and the gosvamis are always well -wishers fo r the general public. They arc
Gauta mn, Kana~a, Ka pila, Patafijali', j aimini a nd A~!avakra. Theism is especially spiritual well-wishers. Spiritu al well -being is automatically fol·
explained completely in the Vedanta-stltra, whereas in o ther syste ms o f lowed by ma terial well-being. The aciiryas therefore give directions in
philosophical speculations, practically no mentio n is given to the ultimate spiritual well-being fo r the peopl e in general. Foreseeing the incompetencies
cause of all causes. One can sit o n the Vyiisasaua o nl y after being conver· o f the people in this age of Kali, or th e iron age o f quarrel, the sages
sunl in all systems o f ph ilosoph y so thnt o ne can presen t fully the r\·tpH·s lt:d that Siita Cosviimi give a summary o f all revealed scriptures
theisti c view~ o f the /Jitiigavatam in defiance o f all other syste ms. $ rila Siita bccau&: the people o f this age arc condemned in every respect. The sages,
Cosviimi was the proper teacher, and the re fore th e sages at N aimi~iiral1Y8 therefo re , inquired of the absolute good , which is the ultimate good for
el evated h im to th e Vyiisiisana. Srila Vy iisadevu is designated herei n as th e till' pr·oplt: . The condemned state of a ffairs o f the people of this age is
Personali ty of (;od hcarl because lu: is th r uut lwriz•·d iucarnatiun.
dc,seribcd us follo ws.

~ ~;{ ~ ~ d"'hf(ijC::d!liih( I Sj(~UIIiNI~'i: ({+1f~~~iij'Of(: I
i~_~: ~~~ ~~II G II ~: ij'l<R:;¥(~ ~IHU ~:II ~ oil
vPttha tvam saumya laL·sanl(lth
tattvatas lad-<tflllgmltiil
briiyu{t snigdhasyct Aifyasya kaliiv a.smin yuge janii/t
mandalt sumanda-matayo
guravo guhyam apy uta
mat;da-bltiigya lty ~padrntii{l
vcttl&a- you nrc well convc:rsant; tvam- yuur honor; sattmya- o ne who is
pure and sim ple; tat- those; sarvam- all ; tattvata{t - in fact ; tal-their; pniye(w- nlmost nlwn ys; alpa - mcager;iiylt§a{l- durntion o f life; sabhya-
anugrahiit- !Jy tlw favo r o f; briiyu/&- will tell; snigdlwsya- o f the one who mcmiH:r o f the learned socit:ty; kalau - in this age of Kali (quarrel);
is submi;:sive; s~yasya- of the discipl<'; gura va{t- thc spiritual masters; asmin- hcn: in; y uge-age; janii{l- the puhli c; mandiift- lazy; sumauda·
guhy am- serret ; api uta-endo wed with . matayo~- misgu idcd; manda-b/tiigyii!r - un lucky; hi-and abo ve all;
upad rutiift- disturbcd.
And because you are submissive, your Rpiri tual masters h ave endowed TRANSLATION
you with all thl'ir favors. Therefore you can tell us all you have learned 0 learned one, in this iro n age of Kali men h ave b ut short lives. They
from the m. are quarrelsome, lazy, misguided, unlucky and above aU, always dis tu rbed.
8 Srimad-Bhagavatam [Canto I, Ch I

The dc\olccs of Lhf' Lord ;~rc always anxious for the spirih1al improve· There are many varieties of scriptures, and in aU of them there are many
mc•lll of the· g(·ncral public. \\'hell the sages of ;'llaimi~ra!lya analyzed the prescri.b ed duties which can be learned only after many years of shrdy.
slate of affain; of the JX'Oplc in this age of Kali. they foresaw lhal men Therefore, 0 sage, please select the essential teaehlngs of aU these scrip-
would live short live~. In h.ali-)uga, th e duration of life is shortened not tures and explain them for the good of all living beings, that by such
~u rnueh lwc·au><.· of irNrfficicnl food but because of irregular habits. instruction their hearts may be satisfied.
11) J...o·o·pill!: n·gular hahil~ and c•aling simplr food. 311) man can maintain
hi> ht:rllh. 0\\'rc·ating. O\Cr '"llH' gratification. over dependence on PURPO RT
anulhcr·~ mcrq. ;md arlifil'ial •lalldard~ of li\~ng sap the \Cry \;talily of
Atmii or l>Cif is distinguished from matter and material elements. II is
hurnall crwr10. Tlwrdon· 1111' duration of life is shortened.
spi ritual in constitution, and thus it is never satisfied by any amount of
Tho· peoplc of thi~ a::c· 3r<' al•o \C'r) la;r.y, not onl) materially but in the
material planning. All scriptures and spiritual instructions are meant for
mallcr of self-realization. Thc human life is especially meant for self·
the sati~fartion of this l>Cif or iitmci. There are many \'arieties of approaches
realization. That b to >a), mall $hould come lo know what he is. what the
which are recommended for different types of li~ng beings in different
world is, ami what the 'uprcmc I ruth is. lluman life is a means by which
times and at different places. Consequently, the numbers of revealed
the living rn lily ("[Ill c·lld :1llmi,erics of material existence which arise in the
scriptures are innumerable. There are different methods and prescribed
hard Sl rugglc for c·xistc·ncc allcl by which he ca n rt'lurn lo Godhead, his
duties recom mended in these various scriptures. Taking into consideration
ete rnal horne. But, elm• lo a had ~yslf'm of cd ucalion, men have no desire
the fallen condition of the people in general in this age of Kali, the sages
for sclf-rea liz:1lion. Evc·n if Lhc~y come• to know about iL, they unforlun:rlcly
of Naimi~ra!1ya suggested that Sri Siila Gosvami relate the essence of all
become vict ims of misgu idc·clll'ac:hc•rs.
such scriptures because in this age it is not possible for the faUen souls to
In this ag<', 111<'11 an· nul o11 ly \~tlims of different political creeds and understand and undergo nil the lessons of all these various scriptures in a
parties, but t~ lso of nwny diffc·renl types of sc nsc-grat ifi catory divers ions, oor!la and iisrarna system.
n:uncly c i11cmas, sports, gambling, cluhs, mundane libraries, bad associa·
The oor!la and iiSranra society was considered to be the best institution
l ions, smoking, dri11ki11g, c·heal iug, pilfering, bickcrings, and so on. Their for lifting the human being to the spiritual platform, but due to Kali-yuga
minds arc always rlislurhc·cl unci full of anxil'lics due lo so many different it is not possible lo execute the rules and regulations of these ins titutions.
engagements. l11 this age·, many unscrupulous n\en manufacture their own Nor is it possible for the people in general to completely sever relations
religiou s faiths which an· not bu~cd on any revealed scriptures, and very
with their families as the VOT"{Icisrama institution prescribes. The whole
often people who an· addicted to sc•n>c gratification arc attracted by such
atmo,phcn• i' •urc·hargcd \vilh opposition .. \nd con~idcri11g this. om· <·an
institutions. Con>c'tllH'ntl), in the name of religion so many sinful acts
see thai 'piritual t•rnancipation for tht' c·ommon man in this age is \Cr)
arc being currit-d on. and the people i11 general have neither peace of mind
difficult. Tlw rc·a,on for the ~age~· inquir) into th.b matter is cxplaincd in
nor h~alth of hod). The• ~tudcnt (bralrmaciiri) communities are no longer
the full'"' in;,: \CN'.
being maintained. and hou,t•holrlcr~ do not ob~ervc the rules and regula·
lions of tlw grlrastlra·iUrama. Conscqnrntl), thc.;;o-called uiinaprastha and
san11yiisi who come out of ouch grhastha-iisramas arc easily de\iated from fl.(Y ~~a ¥fllifq mmt mr: 1
th e rigid path. In tlw h.ali·}Uga tlw wholr atmospherr is surchargr•d with
faithle.;;.'ni'N>. \lt•n an• 110 longer inlt•rc>tcd in opirilual \alues. )laterial ~ ~<m \i\Tal W ~ ~~~~II
!;Cnsc gratification is now the• >tnndard of ci\ilization. For the main·
siita jii11iisi blwdraii1 te
tcnancc of ouch material civilization>, man has formed complex nations
bhagauan siiluatiirir pati~
and c:ommu11itics, ami tlwre is a t•on>lanl s train of hot and cold wars
dl'l'Q/:)'Uril l'OSUdC'ti(JS)'O
between th ese diffc·n•nt groups. It has hrtomc \er) difficult. therefore, to
jato yasycr cil:ir~ayci
raise the ~piritunl ~ta 11clard dur· to the prc·scnl distorted values of human
society. Tlw ~ar;<·s of ~airni~rn!'ya arc anxious Lo disentangle all fallen
siila 0 Siil:l Go>\iimi; jiiniisi-you know; blradram te-all bll!:il>ing•
souls, and here they arc scrking the remedy from Srila Siila Gosvami.
upu11 ~ou; bhng1wti11 tlw Pr·r,onalit) uf Godlr(':ul: .~cilvaliim-of the purt•
rlcvutc-o·,; /Jali{r prul<·o·Lur;drtl(lkycim- in the• \vomh of Devaki; vasudevasya
TEXT 11 - by Vasnth-va; jcita{t - horn of; .vas_yn-for the purpose of: ci/:if1ayii-
~ \{~ ~ f.lmtrn: I cxc•t·n tillg.
3«1: ~S'Jf ~ ~~ I
All blessings upon you, 0 Siita Gosvami. You know for what purpose
ilft ~ID orr ~H}.~ m~ II the Personality of God head appeared in the womb of Devaki as the son of
blliiricli blriiri-lwrmii!li
Arotavyiini vibluigaAa{r PURPORT
ala{1 siidho 'Ira yat scirari1 Bhagaviin means the Almighty God who is the con troller of all opu·
:lllliwddlrrtya man~ayci lenccs, power, fame, beauty, knowledge and renunciation. lie is the
briilli b/radriiya bhiitciniim protector of IIi!. purl' devotees. Although God is equally disposed to
yencitmci suprasidati e\cryone, lie is c:,pccially inclined to I lis devotees. Sat means the Absolute
Truth. And p<'r~ons who are servitors of the Absolute Truth are callt•d
bhiiri[li- multifarious; b/riiri- rnany; karmti[li-dutics; srotavyiini-to be satoola.s. And the Pl'rsonalit y of Godhead who protects such pure devotees
learned; vibhiiga5a{r-by di~sion of >ubjccl matter; ataft-thcrefore; siidho- i.s known as the protector of the salwl4$. Bhadram or "blessings upon
0 sage; atra - hercin; yat- whatc\Cr; stiram-cssence; samuddhrtya-b) you" indicate~ the sages' anxiety to know the Absolute Truth from the
selection; man~~ayli-bc:;;l to your knowledge; bruhi-pleasc tell us; speaker. Lord Sri Km1n, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. appeared
bhadriiya-for the good of; bhiitciniim-the li~ng beings; yena-by lo Devaki, the wife of Vasudeva. Vasude-va is the symbol of lhe transccn·
which; iitma-bclf; suprasidati- bccomcs full) satisfied. dental pooitio11 " 'herein the nppcaranc<· of the upremc Lord taJ..e, place.
(continued in next issue)
Read the books of His Di vine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada


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The members of th e
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in the world today. invite you to visit any of the more than
seventy Kr~r:ta conscious centers•
As it's said, hearing is the beginning of for weekda y classes and a
understanding. Now, with a Golden Avatar tape delightful feast every Sunda y.
subscription, you can hear the message of Kr~ r:J a Write or call the center
consciousness directly from a bona fide spiritual nearest you for further in formation.
master, a pure devotee of Kr~r:Ja - His Divine
Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. ' (/is ted o n page two of th is issue)
Each week, you'l l receive lectures, interviews,
c lasses and intimate conversations with His
Divine Grace, all recorded only a few days before.
You' ll find that listening to these transcendental
sounds is a wonderful way to make advancement
on the path toward spiritual perfection. Krsna
. .. Conscious Calendar
Kr~~a conscious devotees follow a spiritual calendar that
divides t~e year into twelve monlhs, each named for a dif-
ferent form of Kr~~a. The xear is full of Kr~~a conscious
festi vals, and some of the upcoming ones are listed here. The
devotees of the ISKCON center nearest you will gladly tell you
more about the meaning ot these iestivals.

Year 489, Caitanya Era

Vai ~~ava Month of Sridhara (29 days. july 24-August 21,19751

Kr~f.la pak~a (dark fortnight)

Ekadasi Parana after 5:17

a.m. and before 9:32a.m.

Sukla pak~a (bright fortnight)

Disappearance of Srila Beginning of Sri Radha-

Raghunandana Thakura and Govinda's Jhulana-yatra.
Srila Vamsidasa Babaji.

Pavitraropana-ekadasi. Ekadasi Parana before 9:32a.m.

Disappearance of Srlla Rupa Go-
svaml and Srila Gaurldasa Par:JQita.
lord Kr~~a's Pavitraropanpotsava.
~?~~?-%,~·;:;~:"1[0.:<·':0:: ·- ~
£!~:-:,:~~~s,g~j_~ol ~-::-:· _ · ;_._ .
The End of Sri Radha-Govinda's
Jhulana-yatra. Appearance of
Lord Baladeva (fasting).
Hr$ikesa 9 (August 30) Hr$ikesa 10 (August 31 l

Sri Kr~~a-janmil~!ami Janmastami

. . Parana. before 9:32
Cfastingl. a.m. Sri Nandotsava. Appearance
of His Divine Grace
A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
Prabhupada. Sri Vyasa-pilja.
The Killing of Putani Witch so fortunate that the same Kr~r:ta played fond of Kr~r:ta? Undoubtedly all the gop is
(continued from page 14) in her lap as a little child. The lotus feet and cowherd boys and cows, who served
of Kr$r:ta, which are worshiped by great Kr~r:ta in Vrndavana with love and affec-
Nanda Maharaja recalled the sages and devotees, were placed on the tion, were liberated from the miserable
prophecy of Vasudeva and considered body of Putana. People worship KHr:ta condition of material existence.
him a great sage and mystic yogi; other- and offer food, but automatically He When all the inhab i tants of
wise, how could he have foretold an in- sucked the m ilk from the body of Vrndavana smelled the good aroma from
cident that happened during his absence Putana. Devotees therefore pray that if the smoke of the burning Putana, they
from Vrndavana? After this, all the resi- simply by offering something as an inquired from each other, "Where is this
dents of Vraja cut the gigantic body of enemy, Putana got so much benefit, then good flavor coming from?" And while
Putana into pieces and piled it with who can measure the benefit of worship- conversing, they came to understand
wood for burning. When all the limbs of ing Kr$r:ta in love and affection? that it was the fumes of the burning
Putana's body were burning, the smoke One should only worship Kr$r:ta if for Putana. They were very fond of Kr$r:ta,
emanating from the fire created a good no other rea.son than so much benefit and as soon as they heard that the demon
aroma. This aroma was due to her being awaits the worshiper. Although Putana Putana was killed by Knr:ta. they offered
killed by Knr:ta. This means that the was an evil spirit, she gained elevation blessings to the little child out of affec-
demon Putana was washed of all her sin- just like the mother of the Supreme Per- tion. After the burning of Putana, Nanda
ful activities and attained a celestial sonality of Godhead. It is clear that the Maharaja came home and immediately
body. Here is an example of how the cows and the elderly gopis who offered took up the child on his lap and began to
Supreme Personality of Godhead is all milk to Kr~r:ta were also elevated to the smell His head. In this way, he was quite
good: Putana came to kill Knr:ta, but be- transcendental position. Kr~r:ta can offer satisfied that his little child was saved
cause He sucked her milk, she was im- anyone anything, from liberation to any- from this great calamity. Srila Sukadeva
mediately purified, and her dead body thing materially conceivable. Therefore, Gosvami has blessed all persons who
attained a transcendental quality. Her there cannot be any doubt of the salva- hear the narration of the killing of
only business was to kill small children; tion of Putana, whose bodily milk was Putana by KHr:ta. They will surely attain
she was only fond of blood. But in spite sucked by Kr~r:ta for such a long time. the favor of Govinda.
of being envious of Kr~r:ta, she attained And how can there be any doubt about ThtlS ends the Bhaktivedanta purport of the
salvation because she gave her milk to the salvation of the gopis, who were so Sixth Chapter of Kr~r:ta, "Piitana Killed."
Him to drink. So what can be said of
others who are affectionate to Knr:ta in

the relationship of mother or father? ...with advanced disciples
Immense Profit of the Hare Kr~oa movement.
Experience life
The pure devotees always serve Kr~r:ta in a mobile asrama.
with great love and affection, for He is
the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the • Daily classes
Supersoul of every living entity. in mantra meditation
Therefore it is concluded that even a lit- and the philosophy of
tle energy expended in the service of the Bhaga vad-gita.
Lord gives one immense transcendental • Vegetarian yoga diet.
profit. This is explained in the Bhagavad- Learn to play ancient
gita: svalpam apy asya dharmasya. Devo- Eastern instruments.
tional service in KHr:ta consciousness is F9r a week, a month or longer.
so sublime that even a little service to
For departure dates from your
Kr~r:ta, knowingly or unknowingly, gives
city call (813) 253-3505.
one the greatest benefit. The system of
worshiping Kmta by offering flowers
from a tree is also beneficial for the liv-
ing entity who is confined to the bodily
existence of that tree. When flowers and
fruits are offered to KHr:ta, the tree that
bore them also receives much benefit,
indirectly. The arcana process, or
worshiping procedure, is therefore
beneficial fo r everyone. Knr:ta is
worshipable by great demigods like Lord
Brahma and Lord Siva, and Putana was

Srila Vyasadeva receives inspiration to compile Srimad-Bhagavatam from his spiritual
master, Narada Muni.
the Message Unchanged
by nal message of Srimad-Bhagavatam: pure,
Satsvarupa dasa Gosvami unalloyed service to l{f~Qa (God) .
There are many so~called gurus, in In-
The day on which a disciple cele- dia and elsewhere, who preach some-
brates the appearance of his spiritual thing other than pure devotional service
master is called Vyasa-puja. The word to God. But such "gurus" are condemned
"Vyasa" indicates Srila Vyasadeva, a by Vyasadeva at the beginning of Srimad-
powerful incarnation of Km1a (God) Bhagavatam: "The supreme occupation
who compiled all of the Vedic literature, for all humanity is that by which men
and "pi4}4'' means worship. can attain to loving devotional service
Vyasadeva appeared five thousand unto the transcendent Lord. Such devo-
years ago, at the dawn of the present Age tional service must be unmotivated and
of Quarrel, just when widespread moral uninterrupted in order to completely
deterioration was about to begin. He satisfy the self." (Bhag. 1.2.6) And they
could foresee that the people of this age are condemned by Lord }4~Qa Himself
would be short-lived, unfortunate and ~ in Bhagavad-gitd: "Just give up all other
always disturbed. ~ forms of religiol} and surrender unto Me.
Before Vyasadeva, all the Vedic scrip- 2 I will protect you from all sinful reac-
tures were taught and received verbally ~ tion. Do not fear." {Bg. 18.66) Those
in disciplic succession. The memories of ~ who are followers of the Absolute Truth,
both the students and the spiritual The Vyiisasana (The seat of Vyiisa). the source of all emanations, accept that
masters of those ages were so sharp that One who qualifies himself as a pure all knowledge of the Absolute Truth is
once they heard a transcendental representative of Sri Vyasadeva is coming from the Vedic scriptures com-
message from their spiritual master, the eligible to be seated here. piled by Vyasadeva, which include
message was immediately imprinted into Srimad-Bhagavatam and Bhagavad-gita. The
their brains and considered a written pie, in an unbroken chain, and today His emphatic conclusion of these scriptures,
language. Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta which are the cream of the Vedas, is that
To give the unfortunate people of the Swami Prabhupada, spiritual master of Lord KnQa is the source of all incarna-
modern age a chance to partake of the the International Society for Krishna tions and manifestations. And this con-
knowledge contained in the Vedas, Sri Consciousness, is delivering it in turn to clusion has been reiterated by all the
Vyasadeva undertook the enormous task his disciples. spiritual masters in disci plic succession,
of compilation. He composed the Out of his causeless mercy, Srila such as Lord Brahma, Narada,
millions of Sanskrit verses of the Vyasadeva wrote Srimad-Bhagavatam for Vyasadeva and, in the modern age, Lord
Mahabharata, the Vedanta-sutra and the the benefit of the fallen people of Kali- Caitanya, who stressed the chanting of
Purtit,las, including Srimad-Bhagavatam. No yuga (the modern age), and out of his the Hare }4~l)a mantra.
one else in history can compare with causeless mercy Srila Prabhupada is per- Therefore one who is an actual
him as a poet, philosopher or writer, and sonally translating and expanding this spiritual master, who is imparting genu-
he is thus known as Mahamuni (the monumental work-and he is preaching ine knowledge of the Absolute Truth,
great sage). He is the spiritual master of it throughout the Western world as well. must preach the message of Vyasadeva
all who follow the teachings of the Vedas. At the advanced age of seventy, he trav- without change. So on his appearance
His final, mature work, Srimad- eled under great hardship from India to day, the disciples of His Divine Grace
Bhagavatam, is known as the "ripened America to found the International A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
fruit of the Vedas" and is sufficient in it- Society for Krishna Consciousness, and will worship him as a bona fide repre-
self for God realization. The precious today, nine years later, he tirelessly sentative of Vyasadeva, who is faithfully
Bhtigavatam has been handed down in works eighteen to twenty hours a day, preaching the pure message of
disciplic succession, from guru to disci- still translating and preaching the eter- Vyasadeva throughout the world. Q

Illustration: Murandhara dasa
The Most Blessed Event

In 1969 a unique book
Two recent
was discovered -a editions ofthe
The Appearan~ D:ly or Our Belo•-ed S.!'iritu3llli.ster

collection of tributes to Sri Vytisa -ptijti His Divine Grace

Thakura tribtlle book. A.C. B1a1tivedanta Swami R:abhupada
Bhaktisiddhanta Founder·Acmy3 or the International Society ror KrishM Consciousness

Sarasvati Prabhupada August 12:. 1974

written by his disciples,

one of whom was Abhay
Caran Das, later to Dear Srila Prabbupada, your ap- your all-merciful hand to pull us out of
pearance day is the most historic event this dark well of material life. As
become His Divine Grace in the history of man. Under your divine Narottama dasa Thakura has said:
A. C. Bhaktivedanta guidance the whole world is being inun-
Swami Prabhupada. dated by l{r~Qa consciousness. As stated cak$u dana dila yei, janme janme prabhu sei
Those who came upon it in Caitanya-carittimrta (Ad; 7.26) : divya-jnana hrde prakasita
were students of His prema-bhakti yaha haite, avidya vinosa ydte
Divine Grace, and they saj-jana, dur-jana, parigu, jat}a, andha-gat:Ja vede gaya yanhara carita
were inspired by it to prema-vanyaya ~uvaila jagatera jana
"The spiritua l master opens my
print a similar volume in "The KnJ:Ia consciousness movement darkened eyes and fills my heart with
his honor. Since then it will inundate the entire world and will transcendental knowledge. He is my
has become an annual drown everyone, whether one be a lord, birth after birth. From him ecstatic
publication, presented to gentleman, a rogue or even lame, invalid love of God emanates; by him ignorance
Srila Prabhupada on his or blind." is destroyed. The Vedic scriptures sing of
In this Age of Quarrel everyone is full his character."
appearance day. This of lust, anger and greed, being engrossed You have thus established the truth of
selection from last year's in the modes of passion and ignorance. the wonderful vision of sdstra (Vedic
book was written by W e, all your disciples, were also born in scriptures). N ot only have you delivered
Giriraja dasa, now that same ocean of material desires. We all your disciples from the clutches of
President of the ISKCON have been suffering in the hellish dark- sinful life (meat-eating, intoxication, il-
ness of the material world since time im- licit sex and so on), but you have also in-
center in Bombay, India.
memorial. But you are a beam of light, culcated them with divine qualities such
pure and transcendental to this godless as self-control, austerity, simplicity, non-
world, glowing with love of God. All the violence, truthfulness and cleanliness.
evils that we know are completely Who but your divi ne self could have
unknown to you, and all of the bliss in brought about such astounding changes?
which you are immersed is alien to us. As Narottama dasa said in his prayer to a
And yet you have so kindly extended Vai~J:Iava:

hearing so much from you, still we do
not understand the value of the soul, es-
pecially the soul who has surrendered to
Kn~a. Nor have we any appreciation of
our Godbrothers.
But you have started this movement
from zero. Long before starting
ISKCON, you struggled unsuccessfully
for many years to find just one person
who could learn pure Kr~~a conscious-
ness from you. Even though you now
have thousands of disciples, you never
lose sight of the value of each and every
one of them. Each of them receives
boundless mercy from you. You do not
look at anyone's faults. Someone may be
ninety-nine percent in illusion and one
percent in Kr~J:ta consciousness, but you
just look at his one percent and im-
mediately devise a trick to increase his
~ ~ ~~\9 .~ -rHE MOST BLESSED EVENT ~ \u~'t:z2 '""l Kr~J:ta consciousness and expand his

'Thr /lpprttnlllft' Dtl)' ofollr!Jrlfltltrl Spinilf(t/' l!ttsrrr service.

My dear father, on this day of your
"His'Divine Grace
A.C.BHAKTIVEDANTA SWAMI MAHARAJA PRABHUPADA .:>ffer of love at your lotus feet, and we
r ound~ "'"''V• o l ,,.. lnt0fn.f110t\.ll Sot1 tv tOt "'''lh'\o' Con.
beg that you accept it. We pray for the
strength required to recognize our
yahara tlika.te gele papa dlire yaya they were going to take him away, but Godbrothers and Godsisters as your lov-
emana dayala prabhu keba kotha paya you stopped them, smiled and said, "I'm ing children. We beg for the cooperative
just saying what Kn~a says in Bhagavad- spirit to push on this movement
"Whose association but yours can cause gita." After a while the man came to his throughout and even beyond this world.
the sinful reactions of the most sinful senses. He bowed down and touched We pray that Kr~~a may give us the in-
man to run away? Who is so merciful your feet, and you accepted him. Who telligence to act for your pleasure.
as Your Divine Grace? Search as I may, I can stand against you? Your patience This material existence is a
cannot find him." You are the greatest and determination are limitless. You are nightmare, Srila Prabhupada. We do not
Vai~~ava because you are the most mag- causelessly merciful because of being al- want to come back here. You have
nanimous and because you are bestow- ways absorbed in love of Radha-Kn~a. brought us this far; now please take us
ing upon us the highest perfection: You are on the transcendental platform, further away from this hellish place,
prema-bhakti (love of God). free from anxieties. You have no busi- back to where the supremely attractive
You are so kind and humble that you ness dealings with mundane people; you person is playing upon His flute, enjoy-
do not take any credit for all your only deal with them to show them your ing eternal sports with the gopis. Please
achievements. Taking unflinching causeless mercy. Somehow they must be- take us back to Kr~J:ta.
shelter at the lotus feet of Srila Bhakti come attracted to Kn~a. That is your
siddhanta Saras vati and Srila Rii pa only concern. sri-guru-kan4f.Ja-sindhu
Gosvami, you give all the credit to them. The transcendental name of Kn~a adhama janara bandhu
Your spiritual master is now glorified all vibrated through your lips surpasses all lokanatha lokera jivana
over the world. We, who are so polluted the singing of the Gandharvas, the ha ha prabhu kara daya
by this Age of Kali, have nonetheless celestial singers. As soon as the name deha more pada-chaya
been accepted by you, so we simply pray "Kn~a" is mentioned to you, your face ebe yasa ghu$uk tribhuvana
earnestly to Lord Caitanya and the six beams like the morning sun. 0 Srila
Gosvamis to help us glorify Your Divine Prabhupada, when will we deserve to be "Our spiritual master is an ocean of
Grace all over the world. your disciples? When will we give up mercy, the friend of the poor and the
One day, on your morning walk, a our petty little worlds? When shall we lord and master of the devotees. 0
man started blaspheming you, saying be allowed entry into the world of the master, be merciful unto me. Give me
that you are always criticizing everyone paramahamsas (perfected human beings) the shade of your lotus feet. Your fame is
else. Your disciples were with you, and with Your Divine Grace? Even after spread all over the three worlds." 0
Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura
the spiritual master of His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktiv~danta Swami Prabhupada

Sri Vyasa-piija Offer ing
Adore adore ye all Forty years ago, a disciple of Srila
Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Absolute is sentient
The happy day, composed a poem in honor of the Thou hast proved,
Blessed than heaven, appearance of his spiritual master. Impersonal calamity
Srila Bhaktisiddhanta greatly ap-
Sweeter than May, preciated this simple expression of Thou hast removed.
When He appeared at Puri, reverence and love. The disciple, This gives us a life
The holy place, Abhay Charan Das, was to become
His Divine Grace A. C. Bhakti-
Anew and fresh.
My Lord and Master, vedanta Swami Prabhupada, Worship thy feet,
His Divine Grace. founder-acarya of the International Your Divine Grace.
Society for Krishna Consciousness.

Oh! my Master, Forgotten l{r~l)a, Had you not come,

The evangelic angel, We fallen souls Who had told
Give us Thy light, Pay most heavy The message of l{r~l)a,
Light up Thy candle. The illusion's toll. Forceful and bold?
Struggle for existence Darkness around That's your right,
A human race, All untrace, You have the mace.
The only hope The only hope, Save me, a fallen,
His Divine Grace. His Divine Grace. Your Divine Grace.

Misled, we are Message of service The line of service

All going astray. Thou hast brought, As drawn by you
Save us, Lord, A healthful life Is pleasing and healthy,
Our fervent pray. As Caitanya wrought. Like morning dew.
Wonder Thy ways Unknown to all, The oldest of all,
To turn our face, It's full of brace. But in new dress
Adore Thy feet, That's your gift, Miracle done,
Your Divine Grace. Your Divine Grace. Your Divine Grace.


The following speech was given by Abhay Charan Das

(His D ivine Grace A. C . Bha ktivedanta Swami Prabhupada)
before the members ofthe Sri Gau4iya Math in Bombay in February, 1936,
on the occasion of the birthday anniversary of
Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura.

24 BACK TO GODHEAD Photo: Bhargava dasa


sa~ad-dharitvena samasta-stistrair world is also one. In the Mur:z4aka

uktas tatha bhavyata eva sadbhib Upani$ad(1.2.12) it is said:
kintu prabhor yab priya eva tasya
vande gurob sri-cara!ftiravindam tad vijiiantirtham sa gurum evabhigacchet
His Divine Grace samit-pti!!i/l irotriyam brahma-ni~!ham
"In the revealed scriptures it is declared
Srila Bhaktisiddhanta
that the spiritual master should be
worshiped like the Supreme Personality
Sarasvati Thakura
"In order to learn the transcendental
of Godhead, and this injunction is science, one must approach the bona fide
obeyed by pure devotees of the Lord. spiritual master in disciplic succession,
The spiritual master is the most confi- ing to the Acaryadeva is not a sectarian who is fixed in the Absolute Truth."
dential servant of the Lord. Thus let us concern, for when we speak of the fun- Thus it bas been enjoined herewith
offer our respectful obeisances unto the damental principle of gt~ rudeva or that in order to receive that transcen-
lotus feet of our spiritual master." iictiryadeva, we speak of something that is dental knowledge, one must approach
Gentlemen, on behalf of the members of universal application. There does not the guru. Therefore, if the Absolute
of the Bombay branch of the GaucJiya arise any question of discriminating my Truth is one, about which we think
M<1-th, let me welcome you all because guru from yours or anyone else's. There there is no difference of opinion, the
you have so kindly joined us tonight in is only one guru, who appears in an in- guru also cannot be two. The Acaryadeva
our congregational offerings of homage finity of forms to teach you, me and all to whom we have assembled tonight to
to the lotus feet of the world teacher, others. offer our humble homage is not the guru
Acaryadeva, who is the founder of this The guru or iictiryadeva, as we learn of a sectarian institution or one out of
Gauc;l!ya Mission and is the President- from the bona fide scriptures, delivers many differing exponents of the truth.
Acarya of Sri Sri Visva-vai~l)ava Raja- the message of the absolute world, the On the contrary, he is the Jagad-guru or
sabha-1 mean my eternal divine transcendental abode of the Absolute the guru of all of us; the only difference
master, Paramahamsa Parivrajakacarya Personality, where everything non- is that some obey him wholeheartedly,
Sri Srimad Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati differentially serves the Absolute Truth. while others do not obey him directly.
Gosvami Maharaja. We have heard so many times:mahiijano In the Bhagavaram( 11.17.27) it is said:
Sixty-two years ago, on this auspicious yena gatab sa panthti ("traverse the trail
day, the Acaryadeva made his ap- which your previous iictirya has passed"),
pearance by the call of Thakura iictiryam mtim vijtiniytin
but we have hardly tried to understand
Bhaktivinoda at Sri K~etra Jagannatha- ntivamanyeta karhicit
the real purport of this iloka. If we
dhama at Puri. na martya-buddhyasuyeta
scrutinizingly study this proposition, we
Gentlemen the offering of such an sarva-deva-mayo gurub
understand that the mahiijana is one, and
homage as has been arranged this even- the royal road to the transcendental

"One should understand the spiritual as the guru or iiciirya, howsoever equipped by our unsubmissive attitude. It is accor-
master to be as good as I am," said the he may be with all the acquirements of dingly said in Sri Gitii,(4.34):
Blessed Lord. "Nobody should be material knowledge. As it is said in the
jealous of the spiritual master or think of Padma Purii~;~a: tad viddhi pra~;~ipiitena
him as an ordinary man, because the pariprasnena sevaya
spiritual master is the sum total of all sampradaya-vihinii ye upade~yanti te jfiiinam
demigods." That is, the acarya has been mantras te ni$phala matiib jfiiininas tattva-darsinab
identified with God Himself. He has
nothing to do with the affairs of this "Unless you are initiated by a bona fide "Just approach the wise and bona fide
mundane world. He does not descend spiritual master in the disciplic succes- spiritual master. Surrender unto him
here to meddle with the affairs of tem- sion, the mantra that you might have first and try to understand him by in-
porary necessities, but to deliver the received is without any effect." quiries and service. Such a wise spiritual
fallen, conditioned souls-the souls or On the other hand, one who has master will enlighten you with transcen-
entities who have come here to the ma- received the transcendental knowledge dental knowledge, for he has already
terial world with a motive of enjoyment by aural reception from the bona fide known the Absolute Truth."
by the mind and the five organs of sense preceptor in the disciplic chain, and To receive the transcendental
perception. He appears before us to who has sincere regard for the real knowledge we must completely sur-
reveal the light of the Vedas and to iiciirya, must needs be enlightened with render ourselves to the real iicarya in a
bestow upon us the blessings of full- the revealed knowledge of the Vedas. But spirit of ardent inquiry and service. Ac-
fledged freedom, after which we should this knowledge is permanently sealed to tual performance of service to the Ab-
hanker at every step of our life's journey. the cognitive approach of the em- solute under the guidance of the iiciirya is
The transcendental knowledge of the piricists. As it is said in SvetiiSvatara the only vehicle by which we can
Vedas was first uttered by God to Upani$ad(6.23): assimilate the transcendental knowl-
Brahma, the creator of this particular edge. Today's meeting for offering our
universe. From Brahma the knowledge yasya deve para bhaktir humble services and homage to the feet
descended to Narada, from Narada to yathii deve tathii gurau of the iiciiryadeva will enable us to be
Vyasadeva, from Vyasadeva to Madhva, tasyaite kathitii hy arthiib favored with the capacity of assimilating
and in this process of disciplic succession prakiiSante mahatmanab the transcendental knowledge so kindly
the transcendental knowledge was transmitted by him to all persons with-
transmitted by one disciple to another "Only unto those great souls who out distinction.
till it reached Lord Gauraliga, Sri Kr~t:la simultaneously have implicit faith in Gentlemen, we are all more or less
Caitanya, who posed as the disciple and both the Lord and the spiritual master proud of our past Indian civilization, but
successor of Sri isvara Puri. The present are all the imports of Vedic knowledge we actually do not know the real nature
Acaryadeva is the tenth disciplic repre- automatically revealed." of that civilization. We cannot be proud
sentative from Sri Rupa Gosvami, the Gentlemen, our knowledge is so poor, of our past material civilization, which is
original representative of Lord Caitanya our senses are so imperfect and our now a thousand times greater than in
who preached this transcendental tradi- sources are so limited, that it is not pos- days gone by. It is said that we are pass-
tion in its fullness. The knowledge that sible for us to have even the slighest ing through the age of darkness, the
we receive from our Gurudeva is not dif- knowledge of the absolute region with- Kali-yuga. What is this darkness? The
ferent from that imparted by God Him- out· surrendering ourselves at the lotus darkness cannot be due to backwardness
self and the succession of the iiciiryas in feet of Sri Vyasadeva or his bona fide in material knowledge, because we now
the preceptorial line of Brahma. We representative. Every moment we are have more of it than formerly. If not we
adore this auspicious day as Sri Vyasa- being deceived by the knowledge of our ourselves, our neighbors at any rate have
puja-tithi because the Acarya is the liv- direct perception. It is all the creation or plenty of it. Therefore, we must con-
ing representative of Vyasadeva, the concoction of the mind, which is always clude that the darkness of the present age
divine compiler of the Vedas, the Pura~;~as, deceiving, changing and flickering. We is not due to a lack of material advance-
Bhagavad-gitd, Mahabharata and Srimad- cannot know anything of the transcen- ment, but that we have lost the clue to
Bhiigavatam. dental region by our limited, perverted our spiritual advancement, which is the
One who interprets the divine sound method of observation and experiment. prime necessity of human life and the
or sabda-brahma by his imperfect sense But all of us can lend our eager ears for criterion of the highest type of human
perception cannot be a real spiritual the aural reception of the transcendental civilization. Throwing of bombs from
guru, because, in the absence of proper sound transmitted from that region to airplanes is no advancement of civiliza-
disciplinary training under the bona fide this through the unadulterated medium tion from the primitive, uncivilized
iiciirya, the interpreter is sure to differ of Sri Gurudeva or Sri Vyasadeva. practice of dropping big stones on the
from Vyasadeva (as the Mayavadis do). Therefore, gentlemen, we should sur- heads of enemies from the tops of hills.
Srila Vyasadeva is the prime authority of render ourselves today at the feet of the Improvement of the art of killing our
Vedic revelation, and therefore such an representative of Sri Vyasadeva for the neighbors by means of machine guns
irrelevant interpreter cannot be accepted elimination of all our differences bred and poisonous gases is certainly no ad-

vancement from pnm1t1ve barbarism, message of all the real ticaryas, including ing the bird; the bird is not meant for
which prided itself on its art of killing our present Acaryadeva, in the line of the welfare of the cage. Let us, therefore,
by bows and arrows. Nor does the Lord Caitanya. deeply ponder this. All our activities are
development of a sense of pampered Gentlemen, although it is imperfectly now turned towards the upkeep of the
selfishness prove anything more than in- that we have been enabled by his grace cage, and the most we do is try to give
tellectual animalism. True human to understand the sublime messages of some food to the mind by art and
civilization is very different from all our Acaryadeva, Orh Vi$~upada literature. But we do not know that this
these states, and therefore in the Ka,tha Paramaharhsa Parivrajakacarya Sri mind is also material in a more subtle
Upani~ad(1.3.14) there is the emphatic Srimad Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati form. This is stated in the Gita(7.4):
call: Gosvami Maharaja, we must admit that
bhumir iipo 'nalo vayub
we have realized definitely that the
utti~,thata jagrata kham mano buddhir eva ca
divine message from his holy lips is the
prapya vardn nibodhata ahankara itiyam me
congenial thing for suffering humanity.
~urasya dhara nisita duratyaya bhinna pra/ertir ~Jadha
All of us should hear him patiently. If we
durgam pathas tat kavayo vadanti
listen to the transcendental sound with- "Earth, fire, water, air, sky, intelligence,
"Please wake up and try to understand out unnecessary opposition, he will mind and ego are all My separated ener-
the boon which you now have in this surely have mercy upon us. The Acirya 's gies."
human form of life. The path of spiritual message is to take us back to our original We have scarcely tried to give any
realization is very difficult; it is sharp home, back to God. Let me repeat, food to the soul, which is distinct from
like a razor's edge. That is the opinion of therefore, that we should hear him the body and mind; therefore we are all
learned transcendental scholars." patiently, follow him in the measure of committing suicide in the proper sense
Thus, while others were yet in the our conviction and bow down at his of the term. The message of the Acarya-
womb of historical oblivion, the sages of lotus feet for releasing us from our pre- deva is to give us a warning to halt such
India had developed a different kind of sent causeless unwillingness for serving wrong activities. Let us therefore bow
civilization, which enabled them to the Absolute and all souls. down at his lotus feet for the unalloyed
know themselves. They had discovered From the Gita we learn that even after mercy and kindness he has bestowed
that we are not at all material entities, the destruction of the body, the dtmd or upon us.
but that we are all spiritual, permanent the soul is not destroyed; he is always Gentlemen, do not for a moment
and indestructible servants of the Ab- the same, always new and fresh. Fire think that my Gurudeva wants to put a
solute. But because we have, against our cannot burn him, water cannot dissolve complete brake dn the modern civiliza-
better judgement, chosen to completely him, the air cannot dry him up, and the tion, an impossible feat. But let us learn
identify ourselves with this present ma- sword cannot kill him. He is everlasting from him the art of making the best use
terial existence, our sufferings have and eternal, and this is also confirmed in of a bad bargain, and let us understand
multiplied according to the inexorable the Srimad-Bhagavatam(1 0.84.13) : the importance of this human life,
law of birth and death, with its conse- which is fit for the highest development
yasyatma-buddhib ku!Ulpe tri-dhatuke
quent diseases and anxieties. These of true consciousness. The best use of
sva-dhib kalatradi~u bhauma-ijya-
sufferings cannot be really mitigated by this rare human life should not be
any provision of material happiness, be- neglected. As it is said in Srimad-
yat-tirtha-buddhib salile na karhicij
cause matter and spirit are completely Bhagavatam(11.9.29):
}anew abhijiie~u sa eva gokharab
different elements. It is just as if you
labdhva st~durlabham idam
took an aquatic animal out of water and "Anyone who accepts this bodily bag of
put it on the land, supplying all manner three elements (bile, mucus and air) as
mam1~yam arthadam anityam
of happiness possible on land. The his self, who has an affinity for an inti-
apiha dhirah
deadly sufferings of the animal are not mate relationship with his wife and
tur~am yateta na pated ammzrt11 yavan
capable of being relieved at all until it is children, who considers his land as
taken out of its foreign environment. worshipable, who takes bath in the
nib$reyasaya vi~ayab khalt1 sarvatab syat
Spirit and matter are completely con- waters of the holy places of pilgrimage "This human form of life is obtained
tradictory things. All of us are spiritual but never takes advantage of those per- after many, many births, and although it
entities. We cannot have perfect happi- sons who are in actual knowledge-he is is not permanent, it can offer the highest
ness, which is our birthright, however no better than an ass or a cow." benefits. Therefore a sober and intelli-
much we may meddle with the affairs of Unfortunately, in these days we have gent man should immediately try to
the mundane things. Perfect happiness all been turned foolish by neglecting our fulfill his mission and attain the highest
can be ours only when we are restored to real comfort and identifying the material profit in life before another death occurs.
our natural state of spiritual existence. cage with ourselves. We have concentra- He should avoid sense gratification,
This is the distinctive message of our an- ted all our energies for the meaningless which is available in all circumstances."
cient Indian civilization, this is the upkeep of the material cage for its own Let us not misuse it in the vain pursuit
message of the Gita, this is the message of sake, completely neglecting the captive of material enjoyment, or, in other
the Vedas and the PurdtuJs, and this is the soul within. The cage is meant for undo- words, for the sake of only eating, sleep-

ing, fearing and sensuous activities. The features and to stultify Him by claiming lightening as the sun in the sky."
Acaryadeva's message is conveyed by the that He has no sense, no form, no ac- The plain truth so vividly explained
words of Sri Rupa Gosvam i . tivity, no head, no legs and no enjoy- in the Gitd, which is the central lesson of
(Bh.R.S.1.2.255,256): ment. This has also been the pleasure of the Vedas, is not understood or even
the modern scholars due to their sheer suspected by the most powerful scholars
andsaktasya vi~aydn
lack of proper guidance and true in- of the empiric schools. Herein lies the
yathiirham upayuiijatab
trospection in the spiritual realm. All secret of Sri Vyasa-piija. When we medi-
nirbandhab km1a-sambandhe
these empiricists think alike: all the en- tate on the transcendental pastimes of
yuktam vairdgyam ucyatej
joyable things should be monopolized by the Absolute Godhead, we are proud to
prdpaficikataya buddhya
the human society, or by a particular feel that we are His eternal servitors, and
class only, and the impersonal God we become jubilant and dance with joy.
mumu/qubhib paritydgo
should be a mere order supplier for their All glory to my divine master, for it is he
vairagyam phalgu kathyate
whimsical feats. We are happy that we who has out of His unceasing flow of
"One is said to be situated in the fully have been relieved of this horrible type mercy stirred up within us such a move-
renounced order of life if he lives in ac- of malady by the mercy of His Divine ment of eternal existence. Let us bow
cordance with Knt;ta consciousness. He Grace Paramahamsa Pari vraj akacarya down at his lotus feet.
should be without attachment for sense Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Gosvami Gentlemen, had he not appeared
gratification and should accept only Maharaja. He is our eye opener, our eter- before us to deliver us from the thraldom
what is necessary for the upkeep of the nal father, our eternal preceptor and our of this gross wordly delusion, surely we
body. On the other hand, one who eternal guide. Let us therefore bow should have remained for lives and ages
renounces things which could be used in down at his lotus feet on this auspicious in the darkness of helpless captivity. Had
the service of Knt;ta, under the pretext day. he not appeared before us, we would not
that such things are material, does not Gentlemen, although we are like ig- have been able to understand the eternal
practice complete renunciation." norant children in the knowledge of the truth of the sublime teaching of Lord
The purport of the §/okas can only be transcendence, still His Divine Grace, Caitanya. Had he not appeared before
realized by fully developing the rational my Gurudeva, has kindled a small fire us, we could not have been able to know
portion of our life, not the animal por- within us to dissipate the invincible the significance of the first §/oka of
tion. Sitting at the feet of the darkness of empirical knowledge. We Brahma-samhita:
Acaryadeva, let us try to understand are now so much on the safe side, that no
from this transcendental source of amount of philosophical argument by isvarab paramab kr$ttab
the empiric schools of thought can devi-
knowledge what we are, what is this
anadir adir govirnlab
universe, what is God, and what is our ate us an inch from the position of our
relationship with Him. The message of eternal dependence on the lotus feet of
Lord Caitanya is the message for the liv- His Divine Grace. Furthermore, we are "Knt;ta, who is knowaas Govinda, is the
ing entities and the message of the living prepared to challenge the most erudite Supreme Godhead. He has an eternal,
world. Lord Caitanya did not bother scholars of the Mayavada school and blissful, spiritual body. He is the origin
Himself for the upliftment of this dead prove that the Personality of Godhead of all, he has no other origin, and He is
world, which is suitably named Mar- and His transcendental sports in Goloka the prime cause of all causes."
tyaloka, the world where everything is alone constitute the sublime information Personally, I have no hope for any
destined to die. He appeared before us of the Vedas. There are explicit indica- direct service for the coming crores of
450 years ago to tell us something of the tions of this in the Chandogya births of the sojourn of my life, but I am
transcendental universe, where every- Upani~ad(8 . 13.1): confident that some day or other I shall
thing is permanent and everything is for be delivered from this mire of delusion
§yamac chavalam prapadye
the service of the Absolute. But recently in which I am at present so deeply sunk.
savalac chyamam prapadye
Lord Caitanya has been misrepresented Therefore let me with all my earnestness
by some unscrupulous persons, and the "For receiving the mercy ofl{r$t;ta, I sur- pray at the lotus feet of my divine master
highest philosophy of the Lord has been render unto His energy (Radha), and for to allow me to suffer the lot for which I
misinterpreted to be the cult of the receiving the mercy of His energy, I sur- am destined due to my past misdoings,
lowest type of society. We are glad to an- render unto Kmta." Also in the /!..g Veda but to let me have this power of recollec-
nounce tonight that our Acaryadeva, ( tion: that I am nothing but a tiny servant
with his usual kindness, saved us from of the Almighty Absolute Godhead,
this horrible type of degradation, and tad vi~ttob paramam padam
realized through the unflinching mercy
therefore, we bow down at his lotus feet
sada pasyanti surayab
of my divine master. Let me therefore
with all humility.
diviva ca/qur dtatam
bow down at his lotus feet with all the
vi~ttor yat paramam padam
Gentlemen, it has been a mania of the humility at my command.
cultured (or uncultured) society of the "The lotus feet of Lord Vi$t;J.U are the ABHAY CHARAN DAS
present day to accredit the Personality of supreme objective of all the demigods. For Members, Sri Gau<;liya Ma~h,
Godhead with merely impersonal These lotus feet of the Lord are en- Bombay.

Five thousand years ago on an ancient battlefield
in India, Lord Kr~r:aa spoke the words of Bhagavad-
gita to His friend and disciple Arjuna. That holy
discourse, spoken in a mere thirty minutes, can
awaken and refine our eternal consciousness.
"This knowledge is the king of education, the most secret of all secrets. It is the purest knowledge, and
because it gives direct perception of the self by realization, it is the perfection of religion. It is everlasting,
and it is joyfully performed." - Bhagavad-gfta, 9.2

lllilliiVild·lllil Is Ills
His Divine Grace
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
A necessity for anyone truly serious about yoga, self-
realization or spiritual fulfillment, Bhagavad-gitii As It
Is presents and explains the Gitii 's verses without
changing their timeless meaning. This complete edi-
tion includes the original Sanskrit verses, easily pro-
nounceable Roman transliterations, word-for-word
synonyms, translations and elaborate purports.
Pure knowledge, purely transmitted. Forty-four
full-color pictures, painted especially for this
book. 1 ,000 pages. Hardcover, $11.95;
paperback, $7.95. Available from The
Bhaktivedanta Book Trust. 3764 Watseka
Ave., Los Angeles California 90034
" In this world, there is nothing so sublime and pure as When one is situated in transcendental knowledge, he need
transcendental knowledge. Such knowledge is the mature fruit not search for peace elsewhere, for he enjoys peace within him-
of aU mysticism. And one who has achieved this enjoys the self self. Cultivate this transcendental knowledge. Read the books
within himself in due course of time."-Bhagavad-gitti of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada.

The Living Library of Transcendental Knowledge

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