Pradyumna: "Śaunaka Ṛṣi inquired: Why did Mahārāja Parīkṣit simply punish him, since he was the lowest of the śūdras, having dressed as a king and having struck a cow with his leg? Please describe all these incidences as they relate to the topics of Lord Kṛṣṇa." (SB 1.16.5)
Prabhupāda: So here is..., the basic principle is yadi kṛṣṇa-kathāśrayam. Devotees are interested to discuss something if it is helping us how we can become more and more attached to Kṛṣṇa. That is the... Otherwise, we are not interested in the matter of general principles of morality, social culture, ethics. They are required, but because this material world means it is a contaminated world, infected world. So, here in this material world so-called morality or immorality is the same because it is infected. Just try to understand. If there is an epidemic, infection, so in that condition, first of all what is the necessity? First thing is to disinfect the epidemic. In the infected area you cannot derive any benefit by discussing morality or immorality. The man is dying out of infection. So to a immediately dying person, who is sure to die due to infection, what is the use of giving him instruction of morality or immorality? He's going to die.
Similarly, in this world they have invented so many things—philanthropism, altruism, nationalism, this "ism," that "ism," but without Kṛṣṇa. It is the same position. Without Kṛṣṇa consciousness he's going to hell, however moral he may be, however pious he may be, so-called. If he does not know Kṛṣṇa, it has no meaning. Therefore, the first condition was that we are interested to hear about Mahārāja Parīkṣit's punishing the Kali provided it helps us to advance in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Otherwise we have no interest. This should be the principle of devotees. We can take part in everything—politics, sociology or philanthropism, altruism, there are so many things they have discovered—provided by taking part in that department of activities we advance our Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Otherwise reject. Don't take part. You'll be implicated. There, that, that philosophy, technique: dhari' mācha nā choṅya (?) pāni, that we should fish, but don't touch the water. If on the plea of fishing, you become fall down in the water and you are gone, washed away, then what is this?
So sometimes we say that you take part in politics. Our business is not to take part in politics for acquiring big post like president or secretary or attorney general. What you will do that? We have no meaning for this post. Because for a devotee what are these posts? Even the post of Lord Brahmā or Indra, the heavenly king, it has no meaning. Vidhi-mahendrādiś ca kīṭāyate. That is stated by Prabodhānanda Sarasvatī. He says that kaivalyaṁ narakāyate. Kaivalyam, the monism, to merge into the effulgence, the Absolute Truth, to become one, that is called kaivalyam, only spirit, that's all. So for a devotee this kaivalya perfection, monism, is as good as hellish condition of life. Kaivalyaṁ narakāyate. And tridaśa-pūr ākāśa-puṣpāyate. Tri-daśa-pūr means the higher heavenly planets where big, big demigods live. Just like people are trying to go to this planet, that planet. So tri-daśa-pūr. Tri-daśa means thirty, three daśa, ten times...aḥ, three times ten. So there are thirty millions of demigods. And they have got different planets also. So they are promised, "If you come to this demigod's planet, yānti deva-vratā devān (BG 9.25), you will get so much happiness, you will live for so many years, you will have better standard of life, thousand times more than in the... These are... They are described in the Vedas. But a devotee says that this tri-daśa-pūr, this heavenly planet, is as good as phantasmagoria. They have no value for these things.