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SB Canto 1

SB 1.1.2, Purport:

Religion includes four primary subjects, namely pious activities, economic development, satisfaction of the senses, and finally liberation from material bondage. Irreligious life is a barbarous condition. Indeed, human life begins when religion begins. Eating, sleeping, fearing, and mating are the four principles of animal life. These are common both to animals and to human beings. But religion is the extra function of the human being. Without religion, human life is no better than animal life. Therefore, in human societies there is some form of religion which aims at self-realization and which makes reference to man's eternal relationship with God.

SB 1.2.13, Purport:

Human society all over the world is divided into four castes and four orders of life. The four castes are the intelligent caste, the martial caste, the productive caste and the laborer caste. These castes are classified in terms of one's work and qualification and not by birth. Then again there are four orders of life, namely the student life, the householder's life, the retired and the devotional life. In the best interest of human society there must be such divisions of life, otherwise no social institution can grow in a healthy state. And in each and every one of the abovementioned divisions of life, the aim must be to please the supreme authority of the Personality of Godhead. This institutional function of human society is known as the system of varṇāśrama-dharma, which is quite natural for the civilized life. The varṇāśrama institution is constructed to enable one to realize the Absolute Truth. It is not for artificial domination of one division over another. When the aim of life, i.e., realization of the Absolute Truth, is missed by too much attachment for indriya-prīti, or sense gratification, as already discussed hereinbefore, the institution of the varṇāśrama is utilized by selfish men to pose an artificial predominance over the weaker section. In the Kali-yuga, or in the age of quarrel, this artificial predominance is already current, but the saner section of the people know it well that the divisions of castes and orders of life are meant for smooth social intercourse and high-thinking self-realization and not for any other purpose.

SB 1.7.4, Purport:

The internal energy is there along with the Absolute Person as the moonlight is there with the moon. The external energy is compared to darkness because it keeps the living entities in the darkness of ignorance. The word apāśrayam suggests that this energy of the Lord is under full control. The internal potency or superior energy is also called māyā, but it is spiritual māyā, or energy exhibited in the absolute realm. When one is under the shelter of this internal potency, the darkness of material ignorance is at once dissipated. And even those who are ātmārāma, or fixed in trance, take shelter of this māyā, or internal energy. Devotional service, or bhakti-yoga, is the function of the internal energy; thus there is no place for the inferior energy, or material energy, just as there is no place for darkness in the effulgence of spiritual light. Such internal energy is even superior to the spiritual bliss attainable in the conception of impersonal Brahman. It is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā that the impersonal Brahman effulgence is also an emanation from the Absolute Personality of Godhead Śrī Kṛṣṇa. The parama-puruṣa cannot be anyone except Śrī Kṛṣṇa Himself, as will be explained in the later ślokas.

SB 1.8.35, Purport:

In the Śrīmad Bhagavad-gītā the Lord asserts that He appears in every millennium just to reestablish the way of religion. The way of religion is made by the Supreme Lord. No one can manufacture a new path of religion, as is the fashion for certain ambitious persons. The factual way of religion is to accept the Lord as the supreme authority and thus render service unto Him in spontaneous love. A living being cannot help but render service because he is constitutionally made for that purpose. The only function of the living being is to render service to the Lord. The Lord is great, and living beings are subordinate to Him. Therefore, the duty of the living being is just to serve Him only. Unfortunately the illusioned living beings, out of misunderstanding only, become servants of the senses by material desire. This desire is called avidyā, or nescience. And out of such illegitimate desire the living being makes different plans for material enjoyment centered about a perverted sex life. He therefore becomes entangled in the chain of birth and death by transmigrating into different bodies on different planets under the direction of the Supreme Lord. Unless, therefore, one is beyond the boundary of this nescience, one cannot get free from the threefold miseries of material life. That is the law of nature.

SB 1.9.6-7, Purport:

A great sage who practiced severe penances at Utkocaka Tīrtha and was appointed royal priest of the Pāṇḍava kings. He acted as the priest in many religious functions of the Pāṇḍavas (saṁskāra), and also each of the Pāṇḍavas was attended by him at the betrothal of Draupadī. He was present even during the exile of the Pāṇḍavas and used to advise them in circumstances when they were perplexed. He instructed them how to live incognito for one year, and his instructions were strictly followed by the Pāṇḍavas during that time. His name is mentioned also when the general funeral ceremony was performed after the Battle of Kurukṣetra. In the Anuṣāsana-parva of Mahābhārata (127.15-16), he gave religious instructions very elaborately to Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira. He was actually the right type of priest of a householder, for he could guide the Pāṇḍavas on the right path of religion. A priest is meant for guiding the householder progressively in the right path of āśrama-dharma, or the occupational duty of a particular caste. There is practically no difference between the family priest and the spiritual master. The sages, saints and brāhmaṇas were especially meant for such functions.

SB 1.9.27, Purport:

To give charity is one of the householder's main functions, and he should be prepared to give in charity at least fifty percent of his hard-earned money. A brahmacārī, or student, should perform sacrifices, a householder should give charity, and a person in the retired life or in the renounced order should practice penances and austerities. Those are the general functions of all the āśramas, or orders of life on the path of self-realization. In the brahmacārī life the training is sufficiently imparted so that one may understand that the world as property belongs to the Supreme Lord, the Personality of Godhead. No one, therefore, can claim to be the proprietor of anything in the world. Therefore, in the life of a householder, which is a sort of license for sex enjoyment, one must give in charity for the service of the Lord. Everyone's energy is generated or borrowed from the reservoir of energy of the Lord; therefore, the resultant actions of such energy must be given to the Lord in the shape of transcendental loving service for Him. As the rivers draw water from the sea through the clouds and again go down to the sea, similarly our energy is borrowed from the supreme source, the Lord's energy, and it must return to the Lord.

SB 1.9.30, Purport:

In the momentous hour of leaving his material body, Bhīṣmadeva set the glorious example concerning the important function of the human form of life. The subject matter which attracts the dying man becomes the beginning of his next life. Therefore, if one is absorbed in thoughts of the Supreme Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa, he is sure to go back to Godhead without any doubt. This is confirmed in the Bhagavad-gītā (8.5–10):

5: And whoever, at the time of death, quits his body remembering Me alone, at once attains My nature. Of this there is no doubt.

6: Whatever state of being one remembers when he quits his body, that state he will attain without fail.

7: Therefore, Arjuna, you should always think of Me in the form of Kṛṣṇa and at the same time carry out your prescribed duty of fighting. With your activities dedicated to Me and your mind and intelligence fixed on Me, you will attain Me without doubt.

SB 1.14.8, Purport:

All the above statements by the Lord apply to different plenary portions of the Lord, namely His expansions such as Saṅkarṣaṇa, Vāsudeva, Pradyumna, Aniruddha and Nārāyaṇa. These are all He Himself in different transcendental expansions, and still the Lord as Śrī Kṛṣṇa functions in a different sphere of transcendental exchange with different grades of devotees. And yet Lord Kṛṣṇa as He is appears once every twenty-four hours of Brahmā's time (or after a lapse of 8,640,000,000 solar years) in each and every universe, and all His transcendental pastimes are displayed in each and every universe in a routine spool. But in that routine spool the functions of Lord Kṛṣṇa, Lord Vāsudeva, etc., are complex problems for the layman. There is no difference between the Lord's Self and the Lord's transcendental body. The expansions execute differential activities.

SB 1.15.10, Purport:

Queen Draupadī had a beautiful bunch of hair which was sanctified in the ceremonial function of Rājasūya-yajña. But when she was lost in a bet, Duḥśāsana touched her glorified hair to insult her. Draupadī then fell down at the lotus feet of Lord Kṛṣṇa, and Lord Kṛṣṇa decided that all the wives of Duḥśāsana and company should have their hair loosened as a result of the Battle of Kurukṣetra. Thus after the Battle of Kurukṣetra, after all the sons and grandsons of Dhṛtarāṣṭra died in battle, all the wives of the family were obliged to loosen their hair as widows. In other words, all the wives of the Kuru family became widows because of Duḥśāsana's insulting a great devotee of the Lord. The Lord can tolerate insults upon Himself by any miscreant because the father tolerates even insults from the son. But He never tolerates insults upon His devotees. By insulting a great soul, one has to forego all the results of pious acts and benedictions also.

SB 1.15.31, Purport:

One can see Him, one can feel His presence even in this present life simply by understanding the advaya-jñāna Lord, or the Absolute Lord, through the process of devotional service, which begins with hearing about Him. Lord Caitanya says that simply by chanting the holy name of the Lord one can at once wash off the dust on the mirror of pure consciousness, and as soon as the dust is removed, one is at once freed from all material conditions. To become free from material conditions means to liberate the soul. As soon as one is, therefore, situated in absolute knowledge, his material conception of life is removed, or he emerges from a false conception of life. Thus the function of the pure soul is revived in spiritual realization. This practical realization of the living being is made possible due to his becoming free from the reaction of the three modes of material nature, namely goodness, passion and ignorance.

SB 1.18.26, Purport:

It appears that the muni, in whose hermitage the King entered, was in yogic trance. The transcendental position is attained by three processes, namely the process of jñāna, or theoretical knowledge of transcendence, the process of yoga, or factual realization of trance by manipulation of the physiological and psychological functions of the body, and the most approved process of bhakti-yoga, or the engagement of senses in the devotional service of the Lord. In the Bhagavad-gītā also we have the information of the gradual development of perception from matter to a living entity. Our material mind and body develop from the living entity, the soul, and being influenced by the three qualities of matter, we forget our real identity. The jñāna process theoretically speculates about the reality of the soul. But bhakti-yoga factually engages the spirit soul in activities.

SB 1.19.16, Purport:

That a devotee of the Lord is the only perfect living being is explained herein by Mahārāja Parīkṣit. A devotee of the Lord is no one's enemy, although there may be many enemies of a devotee. A devotee of the Lord does not like to associate with nondevotees, although he has no enmity with them. He desires association with the devotees of the Lord. This is perfectly natural because birds of the same feather mix together. And the most important function of a devotee is to have complete attachment for Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the father of all living beings. As a good son of the father behaves in a friendly way with all his other brothers, so also the devotee of the Lord, being a good son of the supreme father, Lord Kṛṣṇa, sees all other living beings in relation with the supreme father. He tries to bring back the upstart sons of the father to a saner stage and to get them to accept the supreme fatherhood of God. Mahārāja Parīkṣit was certainly going back to Godhead, but even if he were not to go back, he prayed for a pattern of life which is the most perfect way in the material world.

SB Canto 2

SB 2.1.invo:

Śukadeva Gosvāmī, and he was proud of being a descendant of Arjuna, the intimate friend of Kṛṣṇa. Personally, he was very humble and meek, but he expressed his gladness that Lord Kṛṣṇa was very kind to his grandfathers, the sons of Pāṇḍu, especially his own grandfather, Arjuna. And because Lord Kṛṣṇa was always pleased with Mahārāja Parīkṣit's family, at the verge of Mahārāja Parīkṣit's death Śukadeva Gosvāmī was sent to help him in the process of self-realization. Mahārāja Parīkṣit was a devotee of Lord Kṛṣṇa from his childhood, so he had natural affection for Kṛṣṇa. Śukadeva Gosvāmī could understand his devotion. Therefore, he welcomed the questions about the King's duty. Because the King hinted that worship of Lord Kṛṣṇa is the ultimate function of every living entity, Śukadeva Gosvāmī welcomed the suggestion and said, "Because you have raised questions about Kṛṣṇa, your question is most glorious." The translation of the first verse is as follows.

SB 2.2.16, Purport:

The functions of the mind are thinking, feeling and willing. When the mind is materialistic, or absorbed in material contact, it acts for material advancement of knowledge, destructively ending in discovery of nuclear weapons. But when the mind acts under spiritual urge, it acts wonderfully for going back home, back to Godhead, for life in complete bliss and eternity. Therefore the mind has to be manipulated by good and unalloyed intelligence. Perfect intelligence is to render service unto the Lord. One should be intelligent enough to understand that the living being is, in all circumstances, a servant of the circumstances. Every living being is serving the dictates of desire, anger, lust, illusion, insanity and enviousness—all materially affected. But even while executing such dictations of different temperaments, he is perpetually unhappy.

SB 2.7.1, Purport:

The incarnation of the Lord is not the concocted idea of fanciful men who create an incarnation out of imagination. The incarnation of the Lord appears under certain extraordinary circumstances like the above-mentioned occasion, and the incarnation performs a task which is not even imaginable by the tiny brain of mankind. The modern creators of the many cheap incarnations may take note of the factual incarnation of God as the gigantic boar with a suitable snout to carry the planet earth.

When the Lord appeared to pick up the earth, the demon of the name Hiraṇyākṣa tried to create a disturbance in the methodical functions of the Lord, and therefore he was killed by being pierced by the Lord's tusk. According to Śrīla Jīva Gosvāmī, the demon Hiraṇyākṣa was killed by the hand of the Lord. Therefore his version is that after being killed by the hand of the Lord, the demon was pierced by the tusk. Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura confirms this version.

SB 2.8.21, Purport:

Samplavaḥ, in the sense of "perfect means," is employed to denote the discharging of devotional service, and pratisamplavaḥ means just the opposite, or that which destroys the progress of devotional service. One who is firmly situated in the devotional service of the Lord can very easily execute the function of conditional life. Living the conditional life is just like plying a boat in the middle of the ocean. One is completely at the mercy of the ocean, and at every moment there is every chance of being drowned in the ocean by slight agitation. If the atmosphere is all right, the boat can ply very easily, undoubtedly, but if there is some storm, fog, wind or cloud, there is every possibility of being drowned in the ocean. No one can control the whims of the ocean, however one may be materially well equipped. One who has crossed the oceans by ship may have sufficient experience of such dependence upon the mercy of the ocean. But one can ply over the ocean of material existence by the grace of the Lord very easily, without any fear of storm or fog.

SB 2.9.34, Purport:

The medical practitioner may deny the existence of the soul in the physiological bodily construction of an individual person, but he cannot give life to a dead body, even though all the mechanisms of the body exist even after death. The psychologist makes a serious study of the physiological conditions of the brain, as if the construction of the cerebral lump were the machine of the functioning mind, but in the dead body the psychologist cannot bring back the function of the mind. These scientific studies of the cosmic manifestation or the bodily construction independent of the Supreme Lord are different reflective intellectual gymnastics only, but at the end they are all illusion and nothing more. All such advancement of science and knowledge in the present context of material civilization is but an action of the covering influence of the illusory energy. The illusory energy has two phases of existence, namely the covering influence and the throwing influence.

SB 2.9.36, Purport:

As long as one is blind to inquiring after self-realization, all material activities, however great they may be, are all different kinds of defeat because the aim of human life is not fulfilled by such unwanted and profitless activities. The function of the human body is to attain freedom from material bondage, but as long as one is fully absorbed in material activities, his mind will be overwhelmed in the whirlpool of matter, and thus he will continue to be encaged in material bodies life after life.

SB 2.10.10, Purport:

Neophyte devotees will misunderstand such supreme transcendental activities of the Lord, and therefore the Lord's pastimes in the material sphere related to creation, maintenance and destruction are verily relishable by the prākṛta, or mundane devotees of the Lord. As the yoga system mainly based on bodily exercises is meant for the person who is too much attached to the bodily conception of existence, similarly the Lord's pastimes related to the creation and destruction of the material world are for those who are too materially attached. For such mundane creatures the functions of the body and the functions of the cosmic world through physical laws in relationship with the Lord are also therefore included in understanding of the lawmaker, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The scientists explain the material functions by so many technological terms of material law, but such blind scientists forget the lawmaker.

SB Canto 3

SB 3.1.18, Purport:

These arcā forms of the Lord may be considered idols by the atheists, but that does not matter for persons like Vidura or His many other servants. The forms of the Lord are mentioned here as ananta-liṅga. Such forms of the Lord have unlimited potency, the same as that of the Lord Himself. There is no difference between the potencies of the arcā and those of the personal forms of the Lord. The example of the postbox and post office may be applied here. The little postboxes distributed all over the city have the same potency as the postal system in general. The duty of the post office is to carry letters from one place to another. If one puts letters in postboxes authorized by the general post office, the function of carrying letters is performed without a doubt. Similarly, the arcā-mūrti can also deliver the same unlimited potency of the Lord as when He is personally present. Vidura, therefore, could see nothing but Kṛṣṇa in the different arcā forms, and ultimately he was able to realize Kṛṣṇa alone and nothing else.

SB 3.1.19, Purport:

The first and foremost duty of a pilgrim is to satisfy the Supreme Lord Hari. While traveling as a pilgrim, one should not be worried about pleasing society. There is no need to depend on social formalities or occupation or dress. One should remain always absorbed in the function of pleasing the Lord. Thus sanctified by thought and action, one is able to realize the Supreme Lord by the process of a pilgrim's journey.

SB 3.1.30, Purport:

Lord Śiva, one of the three qualitative incarnations of the Personality of Godhead, is the plenary expansion of the Lord. Kārttikeya, born of him, is on the level of Pradyumna, another son of Lord Kṛṣṇa. When Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa descends into the material world, all His plenary portions also appear with Him to exhibit different functions of the Lord. But for the pastimes at Vṛndāvana, all functions are performed by the Lord's different plenary expansions. Vāsudeva is a plenary expansion of Nārāyaṇa. When the Lord appeared as Vāsudeva before Devakī and Vasudeva, He appeared in His capacity as Nārāyaṇa. Similarly, all the demigods of the heavenly kingdom appeared as associates of the Lord in the forms of Pradyumna, Sāmba, Uddhava, etc. It is learned here that Kāmadeva appeared as Pradyumna, Kārttikeya as Sāmba, and one of the Vasus as Uddhava. All of them served in their different capacities in order to enrich the pastimes of Kṛṣṇa.

SB 3.5.26, Purport:

We should not understand the process of impregnation by the Personality of Godhead in terms of our conception of sex. The omnipotent Lord can impregnate just by His eyes, and therefore He is called all-potent. Each and every part of His transcendental body can perform each and every function of the other parts. This is confirmed in the Brahma-saṁhitā (5.32): aṅgāni yasya sakalendriya-vṛttimanti. In Bhagavad-gītā (14.3) also, the same principle is confirmed: mama yonir mahad-brahma tasmin garbhaṁ dadhāmy aham. When the cosmic creation is manifested, the living entities are directly supplied from the Lord; they are never products of material nature. Thus, no scientific advancement of material science can ever produce a living being. That is the whole mystery of the material creation. The living entities are foreign to matter, and thus they cannot be happy unless they are situated in the same spiritual life as the Lord. The mistaken living being, out of forgetfulness of this original condition of life, unnecessarily wastes time trying to become happy in the material world. The whole Vedic process is to remind one of this essential feature of life.

SB 3.5.31, Purport:

The chief function of the false ego is godlessness. When a person forgets his constitutional position as an eternally subordinate part and parcel of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and wants to be happy independently, he functions mainly in two ways. He first attempts to act fruitively for personal gain or sense gratification, and after attempting such fruitive activities for a considerable time, when he is frustrated he becomes a philosophical speculator and thinks himself to be on the same level as God. This false idea of becoming one with the Lord is the last snare of the illusory energy, which traps a living entity into the bondage of forgetfulness under the spell of false ego.

SB 3.5.38, Translation:

The controlling deities of all the above-mentioned physical elements are empowered expansions of Lord Viṣṇu. They are embodied by eternal time under the external energy, and they are His parts and parcels. Because they were entrusted with different functions of universal duties and were unable to perform them, they offered fascinating prayers to the Lord as follows.

SB 3.5.38, Purport:

The demigods should not be despised by the controlled living beings. They are all great devotees of the Lord entrusted to execute certain functions of universal affairs. One may be angry with Yamarāja for his thankless task of punishing sinful souls, but Yamarāja is one of the authorized devotees of the Lord, and so are all the other demigods. A devotee of the Lord is never controlled by such deputed demigods, who function as assistants of the Lord, but he shows them all respects on account of the responsible positions to which they have been appointed by the Lord. At the same time, a devotee of the Lord does not foolishly mistake them to be the Supreme Lord. Only foolish persons accept the demigods as being on the same level as Viṣṇu; actually they are all appointed as servants of Viṣṇu.

SB 3.6.1, Translation:

The Ṛṣi Maitreya said: The Lord thus heard about the suspension of the progressive creative functions of the universe due to the noncombination of His potencies, such as the mahat-tattva.

SB 3.7.21, Purport:

Fully satisfied by the answers of the sage Maitreya, Vidura wanted to understand the remaining portions of the creative function of the Lord, and he took the clue from the previous topics.

SB 3.10.17, Purport:

The demigods in the higher planets are called devas because they are all devotees of Lord Viṣṇu. Viṣṇu-bhaktaḥ smṛto daiva āsuras tad-viparyayaḥ: all the devotees of Lord Viṣṇu are devas, or demigods, whereas all others are asuras. That is the division of the devas and the asuras. Devas are situated in the mode of goodness of material nature, whereas the asuras are situated in the modes of passion or ignorance. The demigods, or controlling deities, are entrusted with departmental management of all the different functions of the material world. For example, one of our sense organs, the eye, is controlled by light, light is distributed by the sun rays, and their controlling deity is the sun. Similarly, mind is controlled by the moon. All other senses, both for working and for acquiring knowledge, are controlled by the different demigods. The demigods are assistants of the Lord in the management of material affairs.

SB 3.10.17, Purport:

The energy of the Lord called avidyā is the bewildering factor of the conditioned souls. The material nature is called avidyā, or ignorance, but to the devotees of the Lord engaged in pure devotional service, this energy becomes vidyā, or pure knowledge. This is confirmed in Bhagavad-gītā. The energy of the Lord transforms from mahāmāyā to yogamāyā and appears to pure devotees in her real feature. The material nature therefore appears to function in three phases: as the creative principle of the material world, as ignorance and as knowledge. As disclosed in the previous verse, in the fourth creation the power of knowledge is also created. The conditioned souls are not originally fools, but by the influence of the avidyā function of material nature they are made fools, and thus they are unable to utilize knowledge in the proper channel.

By the influence of darkness, the conditioned soul forgets his relationship with the Supreme Lord and is overwhelmed by attachment, hatred, pride, ignorance and false identification, the five kinds of illusion that cause material bondage.

SB 3.15.33, Purport:

The external energy of the Lord is called the material world, and the kingdom of the internal energy of the Lord is called Vaikuṇṭha, or the kingdom of God. In the Vaikuṇṭha world there is no disharmony between the Lord and the residents. Therefore God's creation in the Vaikuṇṭha world is perfect. There is no cause of fear. The entire kingdom of God is such a completely harmonious unit that there is no possibility of enmity. Everything there is absolute. Just as there are many physiological constructions within the body yet they work in one order for the satisfaction of the stomach, and just as in a machine there are hundreds and thousands of parts yet they run in harmony to fulfill the function of the machine, in the Vaikuṇṭha planets the Lord is perfect, and the inhabitants also perfectly engage in the service of the Lord.

SB 3.22.7, Purport:

Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī has given directions, in his Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu, on how to accept a bona fide spiritual master and how to deal with him. First, the desiring candidate must find a bona fide spiritual master, and then he must very eagerly receive instructions from him and execute them. This is reciprocal service. A bona fide spiritual master or saintly person always desires to elevate a common man who comes to him. Because everyone is under the delusion of māyā and is forgetful of his prime duty, Kṛṣṇa consciousness, a saintly person always desires that everyone become a saintly person. It is the function of a saintly person to invoke Kṛṣṇa consciousness in every forgetful common man.

SB 3.26.14, Purport:

The four internal senses, or subtle senses, described herein are defined by different characteristics. When pure consciousness is polluted by material contamination and when identification with the body becomes prominent, one is said to be situated under false ego. Consciousness is the function of the soul, and therefore behind consciousness there is soul. Consciousness polluted by material contamination is called ahaṅkāra.

SB 3.26.29, Translation:

By transformation of the false ego in passion, intelligence takes birth, O virtuous lady. The functions of intelligence are to help in ascertaining the nature of objects when they come into view, and to help the senses.

SB 3.26.30, Purport:

Doubt is one of the important functions of intelligence; blind acceptance of something does not give evidence of intelligence. Therefore the word saṁśaya is very important; in order to cultivate intelligence, one should be doubtful in the beginning. But doubting is not very favorable when information is received from the proper source. In Bhagavad-gītā the Lord says that doubting the words of the authority is the cause of destruction.

As described in the Patañjali yoga system, pramāṇa-viparyaya-vikalpa-nidra-smṛtyaḥ. By intelligence only one can understand things as they are. By intelligence only can one understand whether or not he is the body. The study to determine whether one's identity is spiritual or material begins in doubt. When one is able to analyze his actual position, the false identification with the body is detected. This is viparyāsa. When false identification is detected, then real identification can be understood. Real understanding is described here as niścayaḥ, or proved experimental knowledge. This experimental knowledge can be achieved when one has understood the false knowledge. By experimental or proved knowledge, one can understand that he is not the body but spirit soul.

SB 3.26.31, Purport:

It has been explained in the previous verses that mind is the product of ego in goodness and that the function of the mind is acceptance and rejection according to desire. But here intelligence is said to be the product of ego in passion. That is the distinction between mind and intelligence; mind is a product of egoism in goodness, and intelligence is a product of egoism in passion. The desire to accept something and reject something is a very important factor of the mind. Since mind is a product of the mode of goodness, if it is fixed upon the Lord of the mind, Aniruddha, then the mind can be changed to Kṛṣṇa consciousness. It is stated by Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura that we always have desires. Desire cannot be stopped. But if we transfer our desires to please the Supreme Personality of Godhead, that is the perfection of life.

SB 3.26.46, Translation:

The characteristics of the functions of earth can be perceived by modeling forms of the Supreme Brahman, by constructing places of residence, by preparing pots to contain water, etc. In other words, the earth is the place of sustenance for all elements.

SB 3.27.28-29, Purport:

Actual self-realization means becoming a pure devotee of the Lord. The existence of a devotee implies the function of devotion and the object of devotion. Self-realization ultimately means to understand the Personality of Godhead and the living entities; to know the individual self and the reciprocal exchanges of loving service between the Supreme Personality of Godhead and the living entity is real self-realization. This cannot be attained by the impersonalists or other transcendentalists; they cannot understand the science of devotional service. Devotional service is revealed to the pure devotee by the unlimited causeless mercy of the Lord. This is especially spoken of here by the Lord—mat-prasādena, "by My special grace." This is also confirmed in Bhagavad-gītā. Only those who engage in devotional service with love and faith receive the necessary intelligence from the Supreme Personality of Godhead so that gradually and progressively they can advance to the abode of the Personality of Godhead.

SB 3.28.27, Translation:

The yogī should further meditate upon the Lord's four arms, which are the source of all the powers of the demigods who control the various functions of material nature. Then the yogi should concentrate on the polished ornaments, which were burnished by Mount Mandara as it revolved. He should also duly contemplate the Lord's discus, the Sudarśana cakra, which contains one thousand spokes and a dazzling luster, as well as the conch, which looks like a swan in His lotuslike palm.

SB 3.28.35, Purport:

The devotee has no other concern than to satisfy the desires of the Lord. That is the highest stage of perfection, called nirvāṇa or nirvāṇa-mukti. At this stage the mind becomes completely free from material desire.

Yathārciḥ. Arciḥ means "flame." When a lamp is broken or the oil is finished, we see that the flame of the lamp goes out. But according to scientific understanding, the flame is not extinguished; it is conserved. This is conservation of energy. Similarly, when the mind stops functioning on the material platform, it is conserved in the activities of the Supreme Lord. The Māyāvādī philosophers' conception of cessation of the functions of the mind is explained here: cessation of the mental functions means cessation of activities conducted under the influence of the three modes of material nature.

SB 3.29.16, Purport:

A neophyte considers the arcā-vigraha (the statue of the Lord) to be different from the original Personality of Godhead; he considers it a representation of the Supreme Lord in the form of a Deity. But an advanced devotee accepts the Deity in the temple as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He does not see any difference between the original form of the Lord and the statue, or arcā form of the Lord, in the temple. This is the vision of a devotee whose devotional service is in the highest stage of bhāva, or love of Godhead, whereas a neophyte's worship in the temple is a matter of routine duty.

Temple Deity worship is one of the functions of a devotee. He goes regularly to see the Deity nicely decorated, and with veneration and respect he touches the lotus feet of the Lord and presents offerings of worship, such as fruits, flowers and prayers. At the same time, to advance in devotional service, a devotee should see other living entities as spiritual sparks, parts and parcels of the Supreme Lord.

SB 3.29.44, Translation:

Out of fear of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the directing demigods in charge of the modes of material nature carry out the functions of creation, maintenance and destruction; everything animate and inanimate within this material world is under their control.

SB 3.30.2, Purport:

The main function of the time factor, which is a representative of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is to destroy everything. The materialists, in material consciousness, are engaged in producing so many things in the name of economic development. They think that by advancing in satisfying the material needs of man they will be happy, but they forget that everything they have produced will be destroyed in due course of time. From history we can see that there were many powerful empires on the surface of the globe that were constructed with great pain and great perseverance, but in due course of time they have all been destroyed. Still the foolish materialists cannot understand that they are simply wasting time in producing material necessities, which are destined to be vanquished in due course of time. This waste of energy is due to the ignorance of the mass of people, who do not know that they are eternal and that they have an eternal engagement also. They do not know that this span of life in a particular type of body is but a flash in the eternal journey. Not knowing this fact, they take the small flash of life to be everything, and they waste time in improving economic conditions.

SB Canto 4

SB 4.7.14, Purport:

The specific function of a human being in society, irrespective of his social status, is to practice control of the mind and senses by observing the regulative principles enjoined in the Vedic śāstras. Lord Śiva is called paśupati because he protects the living entities in their developed consciousness so that they may follow the Vedic system of varṇa and āśrama. The word paśu refers to the animal as well as to the human entity. It is stated here that Lord Śiva is always interested in protecting the animals and the animalistic living entities, who are not very advanced in the spiritual sense. It is also stated that the brāhmaṇas are produced from the mouth of the Supreme Lord. We should always remember that Lord Śiva is being addressed as the representative of the Supreme Lord, Viṣṇu. In the Vedic literature it is described that the brāhmaṇas are born from the mouth of the universal form of Viṣṇu, the kṣatriyas are born from His arms, the vaiśyas from His abdomen or waist, and the śūdras from His legs. In the formation of a body, the head is the principal factor.

SB 4.7.24, Purport:

This capacity is increased by the service spirit. Sevonmukhe hi jihvādau (Brs. 1.2.234) means that the service of the Lord begins with the tongue. This refers to chanting. By chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa, one begins the service of the Lord. Another function of the tongue is to taste and accept the Lord's prasāda. We have to begin our service to the Unlimited with the tongue and become perfect in chanting, and accepting the Lord's prasāda. To accept the Lord's prasāda means to control the entire set of senses. The tongue is considered to be the most uncontrollable sense because it hankers for so many unwholesome eatables, thereby forcing the living entity into the dungeon of material conditional life. As the living entity transmigrates from one form of life to another, he has to eat so many abominable foodstuffs that finally there is no limit. The tongue should be engaged in chanting and in eating the Lord's prasāda so that the other senses will be controlled. Chanting is the medicine, and prasāda is the diet. With these processes one can begin his service, and as the service increases, the Lord reveals more and more to the devotee. But there is no limit to His glories, and there is no limit to engaging oneself in the service of the Lord.

SB 4.17.29, Purport:

A devotee is not hampered by the material body, although he is situated in a physical body that runs according to so many material conditions, just as there are five kinds of air functioning within the body, and so many organs—the hands, legs, tongue, genitals, rectum, etc.—all working differently. The spirit soul, the living entity, who is in full knowledge of his position is always engaged in chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare/ Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare and is not concerned with the bodily functions. Although the Lord is connected with the material world, He is always situated in His spiritual energy and is always unattached to the functions of the material world. As far as the material body is concerned, there are six "waves," or symptomatic material conditions: hunger, thirst, lamentation, bewilderment, old age and death. The liberated soul is never concerned with these six physical interactions. The Supreme Personality of Godhead, being the all-powerful master of all energies, has some connection with the external energy, but He is always free from the interactions of the external energy in the material world.

SB 4.21.22, Purport:

No one knows who is a brāhmaṇa, who is a kṣatriya, who is a vaiśya or who is a śūdra, and people claim to belong to a particular social order by birthright only. It is the duty of the government to reestablish social order in terms of occupational duties and the modes of material nature, for that will make the entire world population actually civilized. If it does not observe the institutional functions of the four social orders, human society is no better than animal society in which there is never tranquillity, peace and prosperity but only chaos and confusion. Mahārāja Pṛthu, as an ideal king, strictly observed the maintenance of the Vedic social order.

Prajāyate iti prajā. The word prajā refers to one who takes birth. Therefore Pṛthu Mahārāja guaranteed protection for prajānām—all living entities who took birth in his kingdom. Prajā refers not only to human beings but also to animals, trees and every other living entity. It is the duty of the king to give all living entities protection and food. The fools and rascals of modern society have no knowledge of the extent of the responsibility of the government. Animals are also citizens of the land in which they happen to be born, and they also have the right to continue their existence at the cost of the Supreme Lord. The disturbance of the animal population by wholesale slaughter produces a catastrophic future reaction for the butcher, his land and his government.

SB 4.24.12, Purport:

Generally a woman becomes more beautiful when, after an early marriage, she gives birth to a child. To give birth to a child is the natural function of a woman, and therefore a woman becomes more and more beautiful as she gives birth to one child after another. In the case of Śatadruti, however, she was so beautiful that she attracted the whole universe at her marriage ceremony. Indeed, she attracted all the learned and exalted demigods simply by the tinkling of her ankle bells. This indicates that all the demigods wanted to see her beauty completely, but they were not able to see it because she was fully dressed and covered with ornaments. Since they could only see the feet of Śatadruti, they became attracted by her ankle bells, which tinkled as she walked. In other words, the demigods became captivated by her simply by hearing the tinkling of her ankle bells.

SB Canto 5

SB 5.1.24, Purport:

Sometimes we are criticized because although I am a sannyāsī, I have taken part in the marriage ceremonies of my disciples. It must be explained, however, that since we have started a Kṛṣṇa conscious society and since a human society must also have ideal marriages, to correctly establish an ideal society we must take part in marrying some of its members, although we have taken to the path of renunciation. This may be astonishing to persons who are not very interested in establishing daiva-varṇāśrama, the transcendental system of four social orders and four spiritual orders. Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura, however, wanted to reestablish daiva-varṇāśrama. In daiva-varṇāśrama there cannot be acknowledgement of social status according to birthright because in Bhagavad-gītā it is said that the determining considerations are guṇa and karma, one's qualities and work. It is this daiva-varṇāśrama that should be established all over the world to continue a perfect society for Kṛṣṇa consciousness. This may be astonishing to foolish critics, but it is one of the functions of a Kṛṣṇa conscious society.

SB 5.3.20, Purport:

"Whenever and wherever there is a decline in religious practice, O descendant of Bharata, and a predominant rise of irreligion—at that time I descend Myself."

Unlike ordinary living entities, the Supreme Lord is not forced by the modes of material nature to appear. He appears dharmān darśayitu-kāma—to show how to execute the functions of a human being. The word dharma is meant for human beings and is never used in connection with beings inferior to human beings, such as animals. Unfortunately, without being guided by the Supreme Lord, human beings sometimes manufacture a process of dharma by concoction. Actually dharma cannot be made by man. Dharmaṁ tu sākṣād bhagavat-praṇītam. (SB 6.3.19) Dharma is given by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, just as the law is given by the state government. Man-made dharma has no meaning. Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam refers to man-made dharma as kaitava-dharma, cheating religion. The Supreme Lord sends an avatāra (incarnation) to teach human society the proper way to execute religious principles. Such religious principles are bhakti-mārga.

SB 5.4.8, Purport:

Being an incarnation of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Ṛṣabhadeva had nothing to do with material affairs. As stated in Bhagavad-gītā, paritrāṇāya sādhūnāṁ vināśāya ca duṣkṛtām: (BG 4.8) the purpose of an incarnation is to liberate His devotees and to stop the demoniac activities of nondevotees. These are the two functions of the Supreme Lord when He incarnates. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu has said that in order to preach, one must live a practical life and show people how to do things. Āpani ācari' bhakti śikhāimu sabāre. One cannot teach others unless he behaves the same way himself. Ṛṣabhadeva was an ideal king, and He took His education in the gurukula, although He was already educated because the Supreme Lord is omniscient. Although Ṛṣabhadeva had nothing to learn from gurukula, He went there just to teach the people in general how to take an education from the right source, from Vedic teachers. He then entered householder life and lived according to the principles of Vedic knowledge—śruti and smṛti. In his Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu (1.2.101) Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī, quoting the Skanda Purāṇa, states:

SB 5.6.1, Purport:

He later became captivated by the illusory energy, and in this condition he set forth the basic principles of Jainism. Lord Ṛṣabhadeva set forth the principles of religion that can free one from material bondage, and He put an end to all kinds of atheistic activities. On this earth, the place known as Bhārata-varṣa was a very pious land because the Supreme Lord appeared there when He wanted to incarnate.

Lord Ṛṣabhadeva neglected all the mystic powers for which the so-called yogīs hanker. Because of the beauty of devotional service, devotees are not at all interested in so-called mystic power. The master of all yogic power, Lord Kṛṣṇa, can exhibit all powers on behalf of His devotee. Devotional service is more valuable than yogic mystic powers. Devotees who are sometimes misled aspire for liberation and mystic powers. The Supreme Lord gives these devotees whatever they desire, but they cannot attain the most important function of devotional service. Devotional service to the Lord is guaranteed for those who do not desire liberation and mystic power.

SB 5.11.9, Translation:

There are five working senses and five knowledge-acquiring senses. There is also the false ego. In this way, there are eleven items for the mind's functions. O hero, the objects of the senses (such as sound and touch), the organic activities (such as evacuation) and the different types of bodies, society, friendship and personality are considered by learned scholars the fields of activity for the functions of the mind.

SB 5.12.10, Purport:

The actual protectress is the material nature, but Viṣṇu is her Lord. He is the Lord of everything. Lord Janārdana is the director both externally and internally. He is the cause of the function of words and what is expressed in all sound.

śirasodhāratā yadvad
grīvāyās tadvad eva tu
āśrayatvaṁ ca goptṛtvam
anyeṣām upacārataḥ

Lord Viṣṇu is the resting place of the entire creation: brahmaṇo hi pratiṣṭhāham (BG 14.27). On Brahman, everything is resting. All the universes are resting on the brahma-jyotir, and all the planets are resting on the universal atmosphere. In each and every planet there are oceans, hills, states and kingdoms, and each planet is giving shelter to so many living entities. They are all standing on the earth of feet and legs, torso and shoulders, but actually everything is resting ultimately on the potencies of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Therefore He is known ultimately as sarva-kāraṇa-kāraṇam (Bs. 5.1), the cause of all causes.

SB Canto 6

SB 6.4.49-50, Translation:

When the chief lord of the universe, Lord Brahmā (Svayambhū), having been inspired by My energy, was attempting to create, he thought himself incapable. Therefore I gave him advice, and in accordance with My instructions he underwent extremely difficult austerities. Because of these austerities, the great Lord Brahmā was able to create nine personalities, including you, to help him in the functions of creation.

SB Canto 7

SB 7.10.8, Translation:

O my Lord, because of lusty desires from the very beginning of one's birth, the functions of one's senses, mind, life, body, religion, patience, intelligence, shyness, opulence, strength, memory and truthfulness are vanquished.

SB Canto 8

SB 8.5.43, Purport:

"After attaining Me, the great souls, who are yogīs in devotion, never return to this temporary world, which is full of miseries, because they have attained the highest perfection." (BG 8.15) One has to return home, back to Godhead, for this is the highest perfection of life. To go back to Godhead means to reject this material world. Although we cannot understand the functions of this material world and whether it is good for us or bad for us, in accordance with the advice of the supreme authority we must reject it and go back home, back to Godhead.

SB 8.23 Summary:

The Lord then ordered Śukrācārya to describe Bali Mahārāja's faults and discrepancies in executing the sacrificial ceremony. Śukrācārya became free from fruitive actions by chanting the holy name of the Lord, and he explained how chanting can diminish all the faults of the conditioned soul. He then completed Bali Mahārāja's sacrificial ceremony. All the great saintly persons accepted Lord Vāmanadeva as the benefactor of Lord Indra because He had returned Indra to his heavenly planet. They accepted the Supreme Personality of Godhead as the maintainer of all the affairs of the universe. Being very happy, Indra, along with his associates, placed Vāmanadeva before him and reentered the heavenly planet in their airplane. Having seen the wonderful activities of Lord Viṣṇu in the sacrificial arena of Bali Mahārāja, all the demigods, saintly persons, Pitās, Bhūtas and Siddhas glorified the Lord again and again. The chapter concludes by saying that the most auspicious function of the conditioned soul is to chant and hear about the glorious activities of Lord Viṣṇu.

SB Canto 10.1 to 10.13

SB 10.4.20, Purport:

The body is subject to its own principles of birth, death, old age and disease, but one who is situated in spiritual life (yato bhaktir adhokṣaje) has no birth, no death, no old age and no disease. One may argue that we may see a person who is spiritually engaged twenty-four hours a day but is still suffering from disease. In fact, however, he is neither suffering nor diseased; otherwise he could not be engaged twenty-four hours a day in spiritual activities. The example may be given in this connection that sometimes dirty foam or garbage is seen floating on the water of the Ganges. This is called nīra-dharma, a function of the water. But one who goes to the Ganges does not mind the foam and dirty things floating in the water. With his hand, he pushes away such nasty things, bathes in the Ganges and gains the beneficial results. Therefore, one who is situated in the spiritual status of life is unaffected by foam and garbage—or any superficial dirty things.

SB Cantos 10.14 to 12 (Translations Only)

SB 10.16.49, Translation:

O almighty Lord, although You have no reason to become involved in material activity, still You act through Your eternal potency of time to arrange for the creation, maintenance and destruction of this universe. You do this by awakening the distinct functions of each of the modes of nature, which before the creation lie dormant. Simply by Your glance You perfectly execute all these activities of cosmic control in a sporting mood.

SB 10.47.31, Translation:

Being composed of pure consciousness, or knowledge, the soul is distinct from everything material and is uninvolved in the entanglements of the modes of nature. We can perceive the soul through the three functions of material nature known as wakefulness, sleep and deep sleep.

SB 11.11.14, Translation:

A person is considered to be completely liberated from the gross and subtle material bodies when all the functions of his vital energy, senses, mind and intelligence are performed without material desire. Such a person, although situated within the body, is not entangled.

SB 11.12.19, Translation:

The functions of the working senses—the organ of speech, the hands, the legs, the genital and the anus—and the functions of the knowledge-acquiring senses—the nose, tongue, eyes, skin and ears—along with the functions of the subtle senses of mind, intelligence, consciousness and false ego, as well as the function of the subtle pradhāna and the interaction of the three modes of material nature—all these should be understood as My materially manifest form.

SB 11.13.27, Translation:

Waking, sleeping and deep sleep are the three functions of the intelligence and are caused by the modes of material nature. The living entity within the body is ascertained to possess characteristics different from these three states and thus remains as a witness to them.

SB 11.13.29, Translation:

The false ego of the living entity places him in bondage and awards him exactly the opposite of what he really desires. Therefore, an intelligent person should give up his constant anxiety to enjoy material life and remain situated in the Lord, who is beyond the functions of material consciousness.

SB 11.16.36, Translation:

I am the functions of the five working senses—the legs, speech, anus, hands and sex organs—as well as those of the five knowledge-acquiring senses—touch, sight, taste, hearing and smell. I am also the potency by which each of the senses experiences its particular sense object.

SB 11.22.16, Translation:

Sound, touch, taste, smell and form are the objects of the knowledge-acquiring senses, and movement, speech, excretion and manufacture are functions of the working senses.

SB 11.22.32, Translation:

Similarly, the sense organs, namely the skin, ears, eyes, tongue and nose—as well as the functions of the subtle body, namely conditioned consciousness, mind, intelligence and false ego—can all be analyzed in terms of the threefold distinction of sense, object of perception and presiding deity.

SB 11.23.43, Translation:

The powerful mind actuates the functions of the material modes, from which evolve the different kinds of material activities in the modes of goodness, ignorance and passion. From the activities in each of these modes develop the corresponding statuses of life.

SB 11.28.17, Translation:

Although the false ego has no factual basis, it is perceived in many forms—as the functions of the mind, speech, life air and bodily faculties. But with the sword of transcendental knowledge, sharpened by worship of a bona fide spiritual master, a sober sage will cut off this false identification and live in this world free from all material attachment.

SB 11.30.38, Translation:

Neither Brahmā nor his sons, headed by Rudra, nor any of the great sages who are masters of the Vedic mantras can understand the function of Your mystic power. Because Your illusory potency has covered their sight, they remain ignorant of how Your mystic power works. Therefore, what can I, such a low-born person, possibly say?

SB 11.31.11, Translation:

My dear King, you should understand that the Supreme Lord's appearance and disappearance, which resemble those of embodied conditioned souls, are actually a show enacted by His illusory energy, just like the performance of an actor. After creating this universe He enters into it, plays within it for some time, and at last winds it up. Then the Lord remains situated in His own transcendental glory, having ceased from the functions of cosmic manifestation.

SB 12.3.28, Translation:

O most intelligent one, when the conditioned souls are devoted to their duties but have ulterior motives and seek personal prestige, you should understand such a situation to be the age of Tretā, in which the functions of passion are prominent.

SB 12.6.6, Translation:

O brāhmaṇa, please give me permission to resign my speech and the functions of all my senses unto Lord Adhokṣaja. Allow me to absorb my mind, purified of lusty desires, within Him and to thus give up my life.

SB 12.7.19, Translation:

The Supreme Absolute Truth is present throughout all the stages of awareness—waking consciousness, sleep and deep sleep—throughout all the phenomena manifested by the illusory energy, and within the functions of all living entities, and He also exists separate from all these. Thus situated in His own transcendence, He is the ultimate and unique shelter.

Compiler:Alakananda, Visnu Murti, RupaManjari
Created:27 of Oct, 2010
Totals by section:BG=0, SB=75, CC=0, OB=0, Lec=0, Con=0, Let=0
No. of quotes:75