Bhagawatam 147: Kardama Prajāpati obtains liberation while living; Devahuti begs Maharishi Kapila for Self-knowledge

Purushottamāya namah.

In great joy Kardama Prajāpati took permission of son Kapila Maharishi, circumambulated him and went into the forests. Seeking shelter completely in the Self (atma) he totally rejected his inclination towards these worldly bondages. Due to complete renunciation he was freed even from the obligatory duties such as offering fire worship. Accepting the vow of silence he travelled all across the globe.

The Supreme Lord is over and above cause-effect (kārya-kāraṇa) relationship. Inherently He is devoid of traits (nirguṇa). With His inherent effulgence He illuminates traits of purity (sattva), action (rajas) and ignorance (tamas). Only with pure, exclusive devotion (ekānta bhakti) this Lord can be seen, that too, only as the Self (atma).

Kardama Maharishi focused his mind exclusively on this Supreme Lord and travelled around the globe. He was totally devoid of feelings of egoism (ahamkara) and attachment. He was also beyond feelings of dualities such as happiness and sorrows. With non-dual feelings He saw the Supreme Lord pervading everything in this creation. His intellect, which was exclusively focused on the Self, fixed itself rigidly on the original form and was happy. Kardama Prajāpati, who had the discretionary knowledge of Self (atma) and non-Self (anatma) objects in this creation was like the profound and calm ocean, whose waves had completely receded.

Vāsudeve bhagavati sarva-jñe pratyag-ātmani

Pareṇa bhakti-bhāvena labdhātmā mukta-bandhanaḥ

Due to limitless devotion towards the Supreme Lord Vāsudeva, who is omniscient and who exists within everyone in the form of the individual Self, Kardama Prajāpati’s intellect (buddhi) became motionless. His worldly bondages were totally destroyed and he attained jeevan mukti (liberation when living).

Ātmānaṁ sarva-bhūteṣu bhagavantam avasthitam

Apaśyat sarva-bhūtāni bhagavaty api cātmani

He began to see the Supreme Lord as the Self (atma) that resides within every being. In addition he also saw that all living beings have their residence within the Supreme Lord.

Kardama Prajāpati, the supreme personality, did not have feelings of likes-dislikes. Due to seeing the Lord as pervading the entire creation he was totally absolved of the feelings of differentiation and duality. His mind was filled with absolute devotion towards the Lord. He attained the final state known as liberation.

With this the twenty fourth chapter of the third Canto comes to an end.

Third Canto Chapter Twenty five

In this chapter the conversation between Devahuti and Kapila Maharishi is covered. Kapila teaches his mother bhakti yoga.

Śounaka Maharishi enquired, “O Suta Maharishi, the Lord who inherently is birthless wanted to impart the knowledge of the Self to human beings. For this reason using His power of illusionary energy (māya shakti) He incarnated as Kapila and propagated the philosophy known as Sānkhya Shastra in this universe.

I have heard innumerable stories of the Supreme Lord. But however many number of times I listen to the glories of Kapila Bhagawān, the foremost amongst humans and a Yogi par excellence, my senses are not satisfied.

In accordance to the wishes of his devotees the Supreme Lord takes on a gross body and incarnates. Every activity of Kapila Maharishi is worthy of being praised. I seek to listen to them with deep dedication. Please explain them to me in greater detail”.

Maharishi Suta replied, “Vidura, who was desirous of acquiring Supreme Knowledge (Brahma vidya), asked Maitreya Maharishi exactly this same question. Maitreya Maharishi was exceedingly pleased with Vidura’s dedication and he replied as follows:

“After the departure of his father Kardama Prajāpati, Kapila Bhagawān continued to live on the banks of lake Bindu-sarovara, purely with the intent of pleasing his mother Devahuti.

Kapila Maharishi has seen the ends of Supreme Knowledge. Therefore once when he was seated leisurely, having completed his actions, Devahuti recollected Brahma’s prediction. She approached Kapila and said,

“O incarnation of the Supreme! Forever trying to satisfy these wicked senses (indriyas) of mine, I have suffered enormously and have fallen into the dark pit known as ignorance.

This spiritual ignorance (avidya) is impossible to cross over. You are the eye through which one can cross over this utter darkness. It is purely due to Your grace that I could obtain You as a son. After innumerable births I have now been blessed with the chance to obtain Spiritual Knowledge. This is my last birth.

Ya ādyo bhagavān puṁsām īśvaro vai bhavān kila

Lokasya tamasāndhasya cakṣu sūrya ivodita

You are the Supreme Lord who is the cause of all causes and the Lord of all beings. You have emerged like the Sun to dispel the darkness called ignorance that has enveloped the entire creation.

O Lord! Since You have caused in me this infatuation called ‘me and mine’ towards this body, You alone can dispel it.

Taṁ tvā gatāhaṁ śaraṇaṁ śaraṇyaṁ sva-bhṛtya-sasāra-taro kuhāram

Jijñāsayāhaṁ prakte pūruasya namāmi sad-dharma-vidāṁ variṣṭham

You are the axe that shreds the tree called worldly bondages in devotees who have totally surrendered to You. I seek shelter under You, O Lord. I seek to understand the real form of Nature- Self (Prakriti- Puruśa). You are the foremost amongst those who have the knowledge pertaining to liberation (moksha dharma). To such Lord, I offer obeisance”.

‘Kapila’ is the fruit obtained by noble beings who have totally conquered their senses! He heard his mother’s prayers. Her pure prayer had the ability to create desire towards liberation in humans. For this reason mentally Kapila applauded her. With a cheerful smile on his face, He said,

O Mother, it is my firm belief that if a man seeks liberation he should be established in the Self (atma nishta).  This should be his sadhana. Due to this, he will get permanent freedom from dualities known as joys and sorrows. O virtuous woman! I will preach to you that supreme Yoga known as Sānkhya. In the past I have imparted this knowledge to Maharishis who were desirous of learning it.

Cetaḥ khalvasya bandhāya muktaye cātmano matam

Guṇeu sakta bandhāya rataṁ vā pusi muktaye

Maharishis state that mind alone is the cause for both bondage and liberation. The mind that is attached to comforts causes bondage whereas the mind that is totally devoted towards the Supreme Lord causes liberation.

Due to feelings of ‘me and mine’, impurities such as desire (kāma), anger (krodha), greed are born. The moment the mind is freed from such impurities, it no longer swings violently seeking to obtain material comforts. It will neither bloat at times of happiness nor shrink during grief. It will remain calm in all situations”.

Adhokshajāya namah.

Permanent link to this article:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


Forgot Password?

Join Us

Password Reset
Please enter your e-mail address. You will receive a new password via e-mail.