Bhagawatam 128: The four Kumaras pray to Lord Srihari; Srihari lovingly replies to them

Madhusudanāya namah

Sanaka and his brothers continued, “O Lord, our father Brahma had described to us in detail the secrets contained within Your form. At that moment itself You entered into our hearts through the medium our ear holes. From then on, You have remained fixedly in our intellect. O Lord, today You have shown to us Your form, which is composed of the traits of goodness and purity (sattva), and have brought us great joy. You have been kind enough to bless us.

Although the Shastras extol this manifested form of Yours which is replete with pure qualities, in our opinion the knowledge of the Self (atma tattva) reigns supreme. Devotees who meditate exclusively upon You with total concentration setting aside feelings of egoism (ahamkara) and likes-dislikes (rāga dweśa) will, due to Your grace, stabilize in the highest levels of bhakti yoga. Due to this, within their hearts they will be able to visualize and experience the Self-knowledge.

O Srihari! Those devotees of yours who have the discriminatory knowledge of things permanent and impermanent in this creation (nitya-anitya vastu vivekam) surrender wholly to Your feet. Relishing completely the taste that is contained in those stories that extol Your divine glories, they do not care even for liberation, which can be obtained through your grace alone.

This being the case, what can be said of lesser important positions such that that of Indra, the Lord of heaven, who is totally under the control of time and who merely abides by the commands issued through the movement of Your eyebrows? Needless to say, pure devotees do not seek such trivial positions.

Pure devotees seek only You. There is nothing apart from You that they want. They want only to have Your darshan. In front of this darshan, even the position of Indra, the Lord of heaven, does not appeal to them. For this reason O Lord, we state that there is nothing greater than having Your darshan.

If our minds, akin to bees, are exclusively and joyfully engrossed in playing near Your lotus feet, if our words, akin to Tulasi leaves, are always beautiful as they fall exclusively on Your lotus feet, if our ear holes are exclusively dedicated towards listening to Your divine stories, then O Lord, even if we were to be born in hell as a punishment for our sinful deeds, we have no objection.

O Supreme Lord who is of pure renown! You have manifested before us in this form. You have made yourself visible to us. Due to this darshan our eyes have obtained limitless bliss. Those who cannot control their minds can never ever understand You. This is a fact. To You, O Supreme Lord, we offer our obeisance”.

With this the fifteenth chapter comes to an end.

Third Canto Chapter Sixteen

In this chapter, the Supreme Lord addressing and pacifying Sanaka and other saints, the fall of the doorkeepers Jaya-Vijaya from Vaikunṭha are covered.

Brahma continued to address the Devatas. He continued, “Srihari, the Lord of Vaikunṭha, was deeply pleased when He heard the prayers offered by Sanaka and other Maharishis, who were exponents in Self-knowledge. He, who shines as the Self in an intellect which is totally pure, addressed them and said,

“O Maharishis! Jaya and Vijaya, these two doorkeepers who were cursed by you are my servants. They have committed a grave mistake by insulting you. Through this mistake, they have also insulted me. You are the form of Devatas. Ridiculing Devatas amounts to ridiculing Me. I am completely in agreement with the punishment that you, my sincere devotees, have awarded them.

O Maharishis! Now I request you to please calm down. This is because I consider the knower of Brahma (Brahma vetta, Self-realized beings) as God. I hold such beings in highest esteem. If my servants insult such supreme beings, it amounts I have insulted them.

In the world, for the mistakes of the servant, the master is held responsible. Just as a trace of leprosy spoils the beautiful skin, the mistakes of the servant spoil the reputation of the master.

In this world one who, through the process of hearing My glories dips into the pond known as My ever-pure reputation, will be instantaneously purified, even if he is a kirātaka (hunter or forest tribals). Such pure unending reputation I have obtained purely because of great saints like you. Hence I will not hesitate to cut off even my hand, if I find that it has acted against you.

Only through serving the lotus feet of Self-realized beings like you I have become pure. The dust of your holy feet has cleansed me and rendered me totally pure. By serving the lotus feet of such saints, I have obtained the eligibility to purify the entire world”.

Here it should be understood that by serving the lotus feet of such saints, His (Lord’s) feet have obtained the required purity to purify other devotees who serve Him.

“Seeking that the benevolent glance of Goddess Lakshmi should fall upon them, Indra and other Devatas painstakingly undertake austerities, rituals and disciplines. Such Lakshmi does not ever leave my side, even though I am unattached to her, the reason being the pure reputation that I have gained by serving saints like you.

In the form of the homa flames I accept wood and other materials offered together with ghee by the performer of the Yagna. In the similar manner, the morsels of food mixed with ghee, that are consumed by a Self-realized person, who with no expectation has offered all the results of his actions to me, also reach me. But yet, I do not relish the yagna offerings made through the homa fire, as much as I relish the food that is offered to me by the Self-realized being through his mouth.

The food offered to a Self-realized jnani (knower of Brahma) is my bhiksha! The joy that I experience in offering food (annadāna) to such Self-realized persons is unparalleled.

My illusory power is unending and its reputation is matchless. Ganga, which originates at my feet, purifies everyone in this creation including Shiva who holds her on his head. Even then I, the Supreme Lord, take the dust from the holy feet of my devotees and keep it on my crown. The dust of their feet purifies everyone in the creation including Shiva.

For this reason everyone should show great restraint and patience in matters concerning great saints and Brahmins. Self-realized persons, orphans (helpless beings) and cows are parts of my body. There are indistinguishable from Me”.

Madhusudanāya namah.

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