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Great devotees (SB cantos 5 - 12)


SB Canto 5

SB 5.1.5, Translation:

Śrī Śukadeva Gosvāmī said: What you have said is correct. The glories of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is praised in eloquent, transcendental verses by such exalted personalities as Brahmā, are very pleasing to great devotees and liberated persons. One who is attached to the nectarean honey of the Lord's lotus feet, and whose mind is always absorbed in His glories, may sometimes be checked by some impediment, but he still never gives up the exalted position he has acquired.

SB 5.1.5, Purport:

Despite all kinds of impediments due to surrounding circumstances, he automatically perseveres in devotional service and gradually advances until he once again becomes perfect. Bilvamaṅgala Ṭhākura had been an advanced devotee in his previous life, but in his next life he became greatly fallen and was attached to a prostitute. Suddenly, however, his entire behavior was changed by the words of the very prostitute who had so much attracted him, and he became a great devotee. In the lives of exalted devotees, there are many such instances, proving that once one has taken to the shelter of the lotus feet of the Lord, he cannot be lost (kaunteya pratijānīhi na me bhaktaḥ praṇaśyati (BG 9.31)).

SB 5.1.6, Translation:

Śukadeva Gosvāmī continued: My dear King, Prince Priyavrata was a great devotee because he sought the lotus feet of Nārada, his spiritual master, and thus achieved the highest perfection in transcendental knowledge. With advanced knowledge, he always engaged in discussing spiritual subjects and did not divert his attention to anything else. The Prince's father then asked him to take charge of ruling the world. He tried to convince Priyavrata that this was his duty as indicated in the revealed scriptures. Prince Priyavrata, however, was continuously practicing bhakti-yoga by constantly remembering the Supreme Personality of Godhead, thus engaging all his senses in the service of the Lord. Therefore, although the order of his father could not be rejected, the Prince did not welcome it. Thus he very conscientiously raised the question of whether he might be diverted from devotional service by accepting the responsibility of ruling over the world.

SB 5.1.20, Purport:

Śrī Priyavrata was the grandson of Lord Brahmā. Therefore according to social etiquette, his position was inferior. It is the duty of the inferior to carry out the order of the superior with great respect. Priyavrata therefore immediately said, "Yes, sir. I shall carry out your order." Priyavrata is described as a mahā-bhāgavata, a great devotee. The duty of a great devotee is to carry out the order of the spiritual master, or the spiritual master of the spiritual master in the paramparā system. As described in Bhagavad-gītā (4.2), evaṁ paramparā prāptam: one has to receive the instructions of the Supreme Lord through the disciplic chain of spiritual masters. A devotee of the Lord always considers himself a servant of the servant of the servant of the Lord (CC Madhya 13.80).

SB 5.2.2, Purport:

Since Mahārāja Priyavrata was a great devotee, how could he have begotten a son who desired to be transferred to Pitṛloka? Lord Kṛṣṇa says, pitṟn yānti pitṛ-vratāḥ: persons who desire to go to Pitṛloka are transferred there. Similarly, yānti mad-yājino 'pi mām: (BG 9.25) persons who desire to be transferred to the spiritual planets, Vaikuṇṭhalokas, can also go there. Since Mahārāja Āgnīdhra was the son of a Vaiṣṇava, he should have desired to be transferred to the spiritual world, Vaikuṇṭhaloka. Why, then, did he desire to be transferred to Pitṛloka? In answer to this, Gosvāmī Giridhara, one of the Bhāgavatam commentators, remarks that Āgnīdhra was born when Mahārāja Priyavrata was infatuated by lusty desires.

SB 5.3.14, Translation:

Dear Lord, unless one worships the lotus feet of great devotees, one will be conquered by the illusory energy, and his intelligence will be bewildered. Indeed, who has not been carried away by the waves of material enjoyment, which are like poison? Your illusory energy is unconquerable. No one can see the path of this material energy or tell how it is working.

SB 5.3.14, Purport:

Mahārāja Nābhi was inclined to performing great sacrifices for begetting a son. The son might be as good as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, but such a material desire—be it great or insignificant—is brought about by the influence of māyā. A devotee does not at all desire anything for sense gratification. Devotion is therefore explained as devoid of material desires (anyābhilāṣitā-śūnya). Everyone is subjected to the influence of māyā and entangled in all kinds of material desire, and Mahārāja Nābhi was no exception. Freedom from māyā's influence is possible when one engages in the service of the great devotees (mahac-caraṇa-sevā). Without worshiping the lotus feet of a great devotee, one cannot be freed from māyā's influence. Śrīla Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura therefore says, chāḍiyā vaiṣṇava-sevā nistāra pāyeche kebā: "Who has been freed from māyā's clutches without serving the lotus feet of a Vaiṣṇava?" Māyā is aparājita, and her influence is also aparājita.

SB 5.3.14, Purport:

If one is serious about escaping māyā's influence and returning home, back to Godhead, one must associate with a sādhu (devotee). That is the verdict of all scriptures. By the slight association of a devotee, one can be freed from the clutches of māyā. Without the mercy of the pure devotee, one cannot get freedom by any means. Certainly a pure devotee's association is necessary in order to obtain the loving service of the Lord. One cannot be freed from māyā's clutches without sādhu-saṅga (CC Madhya 22.83), the benediction of a great devotee. In Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (7.5.32) Prahlāda Mahārāja says:

naiṣāṁ matis tāvad urukramāṅghriṁ
spṛśaty anarthāpagamo yad arthaḥ
mahīyasāṁ pāda-rajo-'bhiṣekaṁ
niṣkiñcanānāṁ na vṛṇīta yāvat

One cannot become the Lord's pure devotee without taking the dust of a great devotee on his head (pāda-rajo-'bhiṣekam). A pure devotee is niṣkiñcana; he has no material desire to enjoy the material world. One has to take shelter of such a pure devotee in order to attain his qualities. The pure devotee is always free from the clutches of māyā and her influence.

SB 5.7.6, Purport:

The Supreme Personality of Godhead says that as long as one does not develop the pure devotional service of śravaṇaṁ kīrtanam (SB 7.5.23), hearing and chanting, one must carry out his prescribed duties. Since Bharata Mahārāja was a great devotee, one may ask why he performed so many sacrifices that are actually meant for karmīs. The fact is that he was simply following the orders of Vāsudeva. As Kṛṣṇa says in Bhagavad-gītā, sarva dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja: "Abandon all varieties of religion and just surrender unto Me." (BG 18.66) Whatever we do, we should constantly remember Vāsudeva. People are generally addicted to offering obeisances to various demigods, but Bharata Mahārāja simply wanted to please Lord Vāsudeva. As stated in Bhagavad-gītā: bhoktāraṁ yajña-tapasāṁ sarva-loka-maheśvaram (BG 5.29). A yajña may be carried out to satisfy a particular demigod, but when the yajña is offered to the yajña-puruṣa, Nārāyaṇa, the demigods are satisfied.

SB 5.9.1-2, Purport:

Bharata Mahārāja was a great devotee, but he did not attain success in one life. In Bhagavad-gītā it is said that a devotee who does not fulfill his devotional duties in one life is given the chance to be born in a fully qualified brāhmaṇa family or a rich kṣatriya or vaiśya family. Śucīnāṁ śrīmatāṁ gehe (BG 6.41). Bharata Mahārāja was the firstborn son of Mahārāja Ṛṣabha in a rich kṣatriya family, but due to his willful negligence of his spiritual duties and his excessive attachment to an insignificant deer, he was obliged to take birth as the son of a deer. However, due to his strong position as a devotee, he was gifted with the remembrance of his past life. Being repentant, he remained in a solitary forest and always thought of Kṛṣṇa. Then he was given the chance to take birth in a very good brāhmaṇa family.

SB 5.9.17, Translation:

All the rogues and thieves who had made arrangements for the worship of goddess Kālī were low minded and bound to the modes of passion and ignorance. They were overpowered by the desire to become very rich; therefore they had the audacity to disobey the injunctions of the Vedas, so much so that they were prepared to kill Jaḍa Bharata, a self-realized soul born in a brāhmaṇa family. Due to their envy, these dacoits brought him before the goddess Kālī for sacrifice. Such people are always addicted to envious activities, and therefore they dared to try to kill Jaḍa Bharata. Jaḍa Bharata was the best friend of all living entities. He was no one's enemy, and he was always absorbed in meditation on the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He was born of a good brāhmaṇa father, and killing him was forbidden, even though he might have been an enemy or aggressive person. In any case, there was no reason to kill Jaḍa Bharata, and the goddess Kālī could not bear this. She could immediately understand that these sinful dacoits were about to kill a great devotee of the Lord. Suddenly the deity's body burst asunder, and the goddess Kālī personally emerged from it in a body burning with an intense and intolerable effulgence.

SB 5.10.4, Purport:

The other palanquin carriers were śūdras, whereas Jaḍa Bharata was not only a high-caste brāhmaṇa but also a great devotee. Śūdras do not sympathize with other living beings, but a Vaiṣṇava cannot act like a śūdra. Whenever a śūdra and a brāhmaṇa Vaiṣṇava are combined, there will certainly be imbalance in the execution of duties. The śūdras were walking with the palanquin without at all caring for the ants on the ground, but Jaḍa Bharata could not act like a śūdra, and therefore difficulty arose.

SB 5.10.14, Translation:

Śukadeva Gosvāmī said: O Mahārāja Parīkṣit, when King Rahūgaṇa chastised the exalted devotee Jaḍa Bharata with harsh words, that peaceful, saintly person tolerated it all and replied properly. Nescience is due to the bodily conception, and Jaḍa Bharata was not affected by this false conception. Out of his natural humility, he never considered himself a great devotee, and he agreed to suffer the results of his past karma. Like an ordinary man, he thought that by carrying the palanquin, he was destroying the reactions of his past misdeeds. Thinking in this way, he began to carry the palanquin as before.

SB 5.10.18, Purport:

Saintly people like Jaḍa Bharata do not speak ordinary words. Whatever they say is approved by great yogīs and those advanced in spiritual life. That is the difference between ordinary people and saintly people. The listener must also be advanced to understand the words of such exalted, spiritually advanced people as Jaḍa Bharata. Bhagavad-gītā was spoken to Arjuna, not to others. Lord Kṛṣṇa especially selected Arjuna for instruction in spiritual knowledge because Arjuna happened to be a great devotee and confidential friend. Similarly, great personalities also speak to the advanced, not to śūdras, vaiśyas, women or unintelligent men. Sometimes it is very risky to give great philosophical instructions to ordinary people, but Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, for the benefit of the fallen souls of Kali-yuga, has given us a very nice instrument, the chanting of the Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra.

SB 5.12.12, Translation:

My dear King Rahūgaṇa, unless one has the opportunity to smear his entire body with the dust of the lotus feet of great devotees, one cannot realize the Absolute Truth. One cannot realize the Absolute Truth simply by observing celibacy (brahmacarya), strictly following the rules and regulations of householder life, leaving home as a vānaprastha, accepting sannyāsa, or undergoing severe penances in winter by keeping oneself submerged in water or surrounding oneself in summer by fire and the scorching heat of the sun. There are many other processes to understand the Absolute Truth, but the Absolute Truth is only revealed to one who has attained the mercy of a great devotee.

SB 5.13.25, Translation:

After receiving lessons from the great devotee Jaḍa Bharata, King Rahūgaṇa of the state of Sauvīra became completely aware of the constitutional position of the soul. He thus gave up the bodily conception completely. My dear King, whoever takes shelter of the servant of the servant of the Lord is certainly glorified because he can without difficulty give up the bodily conception (CC Madhya 13.80).

SB 5.13.26, Translation:

King Parīkṣit then told Śukadeva Gosvāmī: My dear lord, O great devotee sage, you are omniscient. You have very nicely described the position of the conditioned soul, who is compared to a merchant in the forest. From these instructions intelligent men can understand that the senses of a person in the bodily conception are like rogues and thieves in that forest, and one's wife and children are like jackals and other ferocious animals. However, it is not very easy for the unintelligent to understand the purport of this story because it is difficult to extricate the exact meaning from the allegory. I therefore request Your Holiness to give the direct meaning.

SB 5.14.44, Translation:

Śukadeva Gosvāmī continued: My dear King, the activities of Bharata Mahārāja are wonderful. He gave up everything difficult for others to give up. He gave up his kingdom, his wife and his family. His opulence was so great that even the demigods envied it, yet he gave it up. It was quite befitting a great personality like him to be a great devotee. He could renounce everything because he was so attracted to the beauty, opulence, reputation, knowledge, strength and renunciation of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is so attractive that one can give up all desirable things for His sake. Indeed, even liberation is considered insignificant for those whose minds are attracted to the loving service of the Lord.

SB 5.15 Summary:

In this chapter the descendants of Bharata Mahārāja and many other kings are described. The son of Mahārāja Bharata was named Sumati. He followed the path of liberation given by Ṛṣabhadeva. Some people mistakenly thought Sumati to be the direct incarnation of Lord Buddha. The son of Sumati was Devatājit, and his son was Devadyumna. Devadyumna's son was Parameṣṭhī, and his son was Pratīha. Pratīha was a very great devotee of Lord Viṣṇu, and he had three sons, named Pratihartā, Prastotā and Udgātā. Pratihartā had two sons, Aja and Bhūmā. The son of Bhūmā was Udgītha, and the son of Udgītha was Prastāva. The son of Prastāva was Vibhu, and the son of Vibhu was Pṛthuṣeṇa, whose son was Nakta. The wife of Nakta, Druti, gave birth to Gaya, who was a very famous and saintly king. Actually King Gaya was a partial incarnation of Lord Viṣṇu, and because of his great devotion to Lord Viṣṇu he received the title Mahāpuruṣa. King Gaya had sons named Citraratha, Sumati and Avarodhana. The son of Citraratha was the emperor Samrāṭ, and his son was Marīci, whose son was Bindu. Bindu's son was Madhu, and Madhu's son was Vīravrata. Vīravrata's two sons were Manthu and Pramanthu, and the son of Manthu was Bhauvana. The son of Bhauvana was Tvaṣṭā, and the son of Tvaṣṭā was Viraja, who glorified the whole dynasty. Viraja had one hundred sons and one daughter. Of these, the son named Śatajit became very famous.

SB 5.15.4, Translation:

King Pratīha personally propagated the principles of self-realization. In this way, not only was he purified, but he became a great devotee of the Supreme Person, Lord Viṣṇu, and directly realized Him.

SB 5.18.4, Purport:

Therefore Lord Kṛṣṇa says in Bhagavad-gītā (7.14), mām eva ye prapadyante māyām etāṁ taranti te: "Only those who surrender unto Me can overcome the influence of the material energy." Therefore no one should think of himself as a liberated person immune to the influence of māyā. Everyone should very cautiously execute devotional service by rigidly following regulative principles. Thus he will remain fixed at the lotus feet of the Lord. Otherwise, a little inattention will create havoc. We have already seen an example of this in the case of Mahārāja Bharata. Mahārāja Bharata was undoubtedly a great devotee, but because he turned his attention slightly toward a small deer, he had to suffer two more births, one as a deer and another as the brāhmaṇa Jaḍa Bharata. Afterward he was liberated and went back home, back to Godhead.

SB 5.19.1, Translation:

Śrīla Śukadeva Gosvāmī said: My dear King, in Kimpuruṣa-varṣa the great devotee Hanumān is always engaged with the inhabitants of that land in devotional service to Lord Rāmacandra, the elder brother of Lakṣmaṇa and dear husband of Sītādevī.

SB 5.19.7, Purport:

One cannot attain Lord Kṛṣṇa by any amount of wealth, followers, or learning. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu is controlled only by pure devotion." Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu had a very sincere devotee whose name was Kholāvecā Śrīdhara and whose only business was to sell pots made of the skin of banana trees. Whatever income he had, he used fifty percent for the worship of mother Ganges, and with the other fifty percent he provided for his necessities. On the whole, he was so very poor that he lived in a cottage that had a broken roof with many holes in it. He could not afford brass utensils, and therefore he drank water from an iron pot. Nevertheless, he was a great devotee of Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. He is a typical example of how a poor man with no material possessions can become a most exalted devotee of the Lord. The conclusion is that one cannot attain shelter at the lotus feet of Lord Kṛṣṇa or Śrī Caitanya Gosāñi through material opulence; that shelter is attainable only by pure devotional service.

SB 5.23 Summary:

This chapter describes how all the planetary systems take shelter of the polestar, Dhruvaloka. It also describes the totality of these planetary systems to be Śiśumāra, another expansion of the external body of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Dhruvaloka, the abode of Lord Viṣṇu within this universe, is situated 1,300,000 yojanas from the seven stars. In the planetary system of Dhruvaloka are the planets of the fire-god, Indra, Prajāpati, Kaśyapa and Dharma, all of whom are very respectful to the great devotee Dhruva, who lives on the polestar. Like bulls yoked to a central pivot, all the planetary systems revolve around Dhruvaloka, impelled by eternal time. Those who worship the virāṭ-puruṣa, the universal form of the Lord, conceive of this entire rotating system of planets as an animal known as śiśumāra.

SB 5.23.1, Translation:

Śukadeva Gosvāmī continued: My dear King, 1,300,000 yojanas (10,400,000 miles) above the planets of the seven sages is the place that learned scholars describe as the abode of Lord Viṣṇu. There the son of Mahārāja Uttānapāda, the great devotee Mahārāja Dhruva, still resides as the life source of all the living entities who live until the end of the creation. Agni, Indra, Prajāpati, Kaśyapa and Dharma all assemble there to offer him honor and respectful obeisances. They circumambulate him with their right sides toward him. I have already described the glorious activities of Mahārāja Dhruva (in the Fourth Canto of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam).

SB 5.23.3, Purport:

The orbits in which they move are compared to machines given by material nature to the operating deities of the stars and planets, who carry out the orders of the Supreme Personality of Godhead by revolving around Dhruvaloka, which is occupied by the great devotee Mahārāja Dhruva. This is confirmed in the Brahma-saṁhitā (5.52) as follows:

yac-cakṣur eṣa savitā sakala-grahāṇāṁ
rājā samasta-sura-mūrtir aśeṣa-tejāḥ
yasyājñayā bhramati sambhṛta-kāla-cakro
govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi

"I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, under whose control even the sun, which is considered to be the eye of the Lord, rotates within the fixed orbit of eternal time. The sun is the king of all planetary systems and has unlimited potency in heat and light." This verse from Brahma-saṁhitā confirms that even the largest and most powerful planet, the sun, rotates within a fixed orbit, or kāla-cakra, in obedience to the order of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This has nothing to do with gravity or any other imaginary laws created by the material scientists.

SB 5.24.23, Translation:

When the Supreme Personality of Godhead could see no other means of taking everything away from Bali Mahārāja, He adopted the trick of begging from him and took away all the three worlds. Thus only his body was left, but the Lord was still not satisfied. He arrested Bali Mahārāja, bound him with the ropes of Varuṇa and threw him in a cave in a mountain. Nevertheless, although all his property was taken and he was thrown into a cave, Bali Mahārāja was such a great devotee that he spoke as follows.

SB Canto 6

SB 6.1.15, Purport:

Since Mahārāja Parīkṣit was a great devotee. the answers of his guru, Śukadeva Gosvāmī, concerning karma-kāṇḍa and jñāna-kāṇḍa could not satisfy him. Therefore Śukadeva Gosvāmī, knowing very well the heart of his disciple, explained the transcendental bliss of devotional service. The word kecit, which is used in this verse, means. "a few people but not all." Not everyone can become Kṛṣṇa conscious. As Kṛṣṇa explains in Bhagavad-gītā (7.3):

manuṣyāṇāṁ sahasreṣu
kaścid yatati siddhaye
yatatām api siddhānāṁ
kaścin māṁ vetti tattvataḥ

"Out of many thousands among men, one may endeavor for perfection, and of those who have achieved perfection, hardly one knows Me in truth." Practically no one understands Kṛṣṇa as He is, for Kṛṣṇa cannot be understood through pious activities or attainment of the most elevated speculative knowledge. Actually the highest knowledge consists of understanding Kṛṣṇa.

SB 6.1.16, Purport:

The word kṛṣṇa-rpita-prāṇaḥ refers to a devotee who dedicates his life to serving Kṛṣṇa, not to being saved from the path to hellish life. A devotee is nārāyaṇa-parāyaṇa, or vāsudeva-parāyaṇa, which means that the path of Vāsudeva, or the devotional path, is his life and soul. Nārāyaṇa-parāḥ sarve na kutaścana bibhyati (SB 6.17.28): such a devotee is not afraid of going anywhere. There is a path toward liberation in the higher planetary systems and a path toward the hellish planets, but a nārāyaṇa-para devotee is unafraid wherever he is sent; he simply wants to remember Kṛṣṇa, wherever he may be. Such a devotee is unconcerned with hell and heaven; he is simply attached to rendering service to Kṛṣṇa. When a devotee is put into hellish conditions, he accepts them as Kṛṣṇa's mercy: tat te 'nukampāṁ susamīkṣamāṇaḥ (SB 10.14.8). He does not protest, "Oh, I am such a great devotee of Kṛṣṇa. Why have I been put into this misery?" Instead he thinks, "This is Kṛṣṇa's mercy." Such an attitude is possible for a devotee who engages in the service of Kṛṣṇa's representative. This is the secret of success.

SB 6.4.35-39, Translation:

Śrī Śukadeva Gosvāmī said: The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Hari, who is extremely affectionate to His devotees, was very pleased by the prayers offered by Dakṣa, and thus He appeared at that holy place known as Aghamarṣaṇa. O Mahārāja Parīkṣit, best of the Kuru dynasty, the Lord's lotus feet rested on the shoulders of His carrier, Garuḍa, and He appeared with eight long, mighty, very beautiful arms. In His hands He held a disc, conchshell, sword, shield, arrow, bow, rope and club—in each hand a different weapon, all brilliantly shining. His garments were yellow and His bodily hue deep bluish. His eyes and face were very cheerful, and from His neck to His feet hung a long garland of flowers. His chest was decorated with the Kaustubha jewel and the mark of Śrīvatsa. On His head was a gorgeous round helmet, and His ears were decorated with earrings resembling sharks. All these ornaments were uncommonly beautiful. The Lord wore a golden belt on His waist, bracelets on His arms, rings on His fingers, and ankle bells on His feet. Thus decorated by various ornaments, Lord Hari, who is attractive to all the living entities of the three worlds, is known as Puruṣottama, the best personality. He was accompanied by great devotees like Nārada, Nanda and all the principal demigods, led by the heavenly king, Indra, and the residents of various upper planetary systems such as Siddhaloka, Gandharvaloka and Cāraṇaloka. Situated on both sides of the Lord and behind Him as well, these devotees offered Him prayers continuously.

SB 6.11.18, Translation:

But if in this battle you cut off my head with your thunderbolt and kill my soldiers, O Indra, O great hero, I shall take great pleasure in offering my body to other living entities (such as jackals and vultures). I shall thus be relieved of my obligations to the reactions of my karma, and my fortune will be to receive the dust from the lotus feet of great devotees like Nārada Muni.

SB 6.11.18, Purport:

"I am the servant of the six Gosvāmīs, and the dust of their lotus feet provides my five kinds of food." A Vaiṣṇava always desires the dust of the lotus feet of previous ācāryas and Vaiṣṇavas. Vṛtrāsura was certain that he would be killed in the battle with Indra, because this was the desire of Lord Viṣṇu. He was prepared for death because he knew that after his death he was destined to return home, back to Godhead. This is a great destination, and it is achieved by the grace of a Vaiṣṇava. Chāḍiyā vaiṣṇava-sevā nistāra pāyeche kebā: no one has ever gone back to Godhead without being favored by a Vaiṣṇava. In this verse, therefore, we find the words manasvināṁ pāda-rajaḥ prapatsye: "I shall receive the dust of the lotus feet of great devotees." The word manasvinām refers to great devotees who always think of Kṛṣṇa. They are always peaceful, thinking of Kṛṣṇa, and therefore they are called dhīra. The best example of such a devotee is Nārada Muni. If one receives the dust of the lotus feet of a manasvī, a great devotee, he certainly returns home, back to Godhead.

SB 6.12.1, Purport:

Although Vṛtrāsura repeatedly encouraged Indra to kill him with the thunderbolt, King Indra was morose at having to kill such a great devotee and was hesitant to throw it. Vṛtrāsura, disappointed that King Indra was reluctant despite his encouragement, took the initiative very forcefully by throwing his trident at Indra. Vṛtrāsura was not at all interested in victory; he was interested in being killed so that he could immediately return home, back to Godhead. As confirmed in Bhagavad-gītā (4.9), tyaktvā dehaṁ punar janma naiti: after giving up his body, a devotee immediately returns to Lord Kṛṣṇa and never returns to accept another body. This was Vṛtrāsura's interest.

SB 6.12.18, Purport:

King Indra, the greatest of the demigods, was astonished to hear the instructions of Vṛtrāsura, who was supposed to be a demon. He was struck with wonder that a demon could speak so intelligently. Then he remembered great devotees like Prahlāda Mahārāja and Bali Mahārāja, who had been born in the families of demons, and thus he came to his senses. Even so-called demons sometimes have exalted devotion for the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Therefore Indra smiled reassuringly at Vṛtrāsura.

SB 6.12.21, Purport:

King Indra wondered how Vṛtrāsura could have been elevated to the position of an exalted devotee. As for Prahlāda Mahārāja, he was initiated by Nārada Muni, and therefore it was possible for him to become a great devotee, although he was born in a family of demons. For Vṛtrāsura, however, Indra could not detect such causes. Therefore he was struck with wonder that Vṛtrāsura was such an exalted devotee that he could fix his mind without deviation upon the lotus feet of Lord Kṛṣṇa, Vāsudeva.

SB 6.13.3, Purport:

This, of course, is a very intelligent question. When a demon is killed, certainly all the demigods are happy. In this case, however, when all the demigods were happy because of Vṛtrāsura's having been killed, Indra was unhappy. Why? It may be suggested that Indra was unhappy because he knew that he had killed a great devotee and brāhmaṇa. Vṛtrāsura outwardly appeared to be a demon, but inwardly he was a great devotee and therefore a great brāhmaṇa.

Herein it is clearly indicated that a person who is not at all demoniac, such as Prahlāda Mahārāja and Bali Mahārāja, may outwardly be a demon or be born in a family of demons. Therefore in terms of real culture one should not be considered a demigod or demon simply according to birth. In his dealings while fighting with Indra, Vṛtrāsura proved himself a great devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Furthermore, as soon as he finished fighting with Indra and was apparently killed, Vṛtrāsura was transferred to Vaikuṇṭhaloka to become an associate of Saṅkarṣaṇa. Indra knew this, and therefore he was morose at having killed such a demon, who was actually a Vaiṣṇava or brāhmaṇa.

SB 6.14.2, Translation:

Demigods situated in the mode of goodness and great saints cleansed of the dirt of material enjoyment hardly ever render pure devotional service at the lotus feet of Mukunda. (Therefore how could Vṛtrāsura have become such a great devotee?)

SB 6.14.7, Translation:

My dear lord, Śukadeva Gosvāmī, although Vṛtrāsura was a sinful demon, he showed the prowess of a most exalted kṣatriya and satisfied Lord Indra in battle. How could such a demon be a great devotee of Lord Kṛṣṇa? These contradictions have caused me great doubt, and they have made me eager to hear of this from you.

SB 6.17.10, Purport:

Although Citraketu never meant to insult Lord Śiva, he should not have criticized the lord, even though the lord was transgressing social customs. It is said, tejīyasāṁ na doṣāya: one who is very powerful should be understood to be faultless. For example, one should not find faults with the sun, although it evaporates urine from the street. The most powerful cannot be criticized by an ordinary man, or even by a great personality. Citraketu should have known that Lord Śiva, although sitting in that way, was not to be criticized. The difficulty was that Citraketu, having become a great devotee of Lord Viṣṇu, Saṅkarṣaṇa, was somewhat proud at having achieved Lord Saṅkarṣaṇa's favor and therefore thought that he could now criticize anyone, even Lord Śiva. This kind of pride in a devotee is never tolerated. A Vaiṣṇava should always remain very humble and meek and offer respect to others.

SB 6.17.34-35, Purport:

It is clear that Citraketu wanted to criticize the behavior of his friend Lord Śiva because Lord Śiva was sitting with his wife on his lap. Then, too, Lord Śiva wanted to criticize Citraketu for externally posing as a great devotee but being interested in enjoying with the Vidyādharī women. These were all friendly jokes; there was nothing serious for which Citraketu should have been cursed by Pārvatī. Upon hearing the instructions of Lord Śiva, Pārvatī must have been very much ashamed for cursing Citraketu to become a demon. Mother Pārvatī could not appreciate Citraketu's position, and therefore she cursed him, but when she understood the instructions of Lord Śiva she was ashamed.

SB 6.17.37, Translation:

The great devotee Citraketu was so powerful that he was quite competent to curse mother Pārvatī in retaliation, but instead of doing so he very humbly accepted the curse and bowed his head before Lord Śiva and his wife. This is very much to be appreciated as the standard behavior of a Vaiṣṇava.

SB 6.17.39, Translation:

My dear King Parīkṣit, you inquired from me how Vṛtrāsura, a great devotee, took birth in a demoniac family. Thus I have tried to explain to you everything about this.

SB 6.17.40, Translation:

Citraketu was a great devotee (mahātmā). If one hears this history of Citraketu from a pure devotee, the listener also is freed from the conditional life of material existence.

SB 6.18.10, Translation:

Now let me describe the sons of Diti, who were begotten by Kaśyapa but who became demons. In this demoniac family the great devotee Prahlāda Mahārāja appeared, and Bali Mahārāja also appeared in that family. The demons are technically known as Daityas because they proceeded from the womb of Diti.

SB Canto 7

SB 7.1.25, Purport:

The conditioned soul, being envious of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, may accuse Him, saying, "Kṛṣṇa is bad, Kṛṣṇa is a thief" and so on, but Kṛṣṇa, being kind to all living entities, does not consider such accusations. Instead, He takes account of the conditioned soul's chanting of "Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa" so many times. He sometimes punishes such demons for one life by putting them in a lower species, but then, when they have stopped accusing Him, they are liberated in the next life because of chanting Kṛṣṇa's name constantly. Blaspheming the Supreme Lord or His devotee is not at all good for the conditioned soul, but Kṛṣṇa, being very kind, punishes the conditioned soul in one life for such sinful activities and then takes him back home, back to Godhead. The vivid example for this is Vṛtrāsura, who was formerly Citraketu Mahārāja, a great devotee. Because he derided Lord Śiva, the foremost of all devotees, he had to accept the body of a demon called Vṛtra, but then he was taken back to Godhead. Thus when Kṛṣṇa punishes a demon or conditioned soul, He stops that soul's habit of blaspheming Him, and when the soul becomes completely pure, the Lord takes him back to Godhead.

SB 7.1.26, Purport:

As for Hiraṇyakaśipu, although he was extremely inimical toward the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he always thought of his son, who was a great devotee. Therefore by the grace of his son, Prahlāda Mahārāja, Hiraṇyakaśipu was also delivered by the Supreme Personality of Godhead.

hiraṇyakaśipuś cāpi
bhagavan-nindayā tamaḥ
vivakṣur atyagāt sūnoḥ

The conclusion is that one should not give up pure devotional service. For one's own benefit, one should not imitate Hiraṇyakaśipu or Śiśupāla. This is not the way to achieve success.

SB 7.1.42, Translation:

Desiring to kill his son Prahlāda, who was a great devotee of Lord Viṣṇu, Hiraṇyakaśipu tortured him in many ways.

SB 7.1.43, Translation:

The Lord, the Supersoul of all living entities, is sober, peaceful and equal to everyone. Since the great devotee Prahlāda was protected by the Lord's potency, Hiraṇyakaśipu was unable to kill him, in spite of endeavoring to do so in various ways.

SB 7.1.48, Translation:

Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira inquired: O my lord, Nārada Muni, why was there such enmity between Hiraṇyakaśipu and his beloved son Prahlāda Mahārāja? How did Prahlāda Mahārāja become such a great devotee of Lord Kṛṣṇa? Kindly explain this to me.

SB 7.4.14, Purport:

The asuras sometimes become so powerful that they can engage even Nārada Muni and similar devotees in their service. This does not mean that Nārada was subordinate to Hiraṇyakaśipu. Sometimes, however, it so happens in this material world that great personalities, even great devotees, can also be controlled by the asuras.

SB 7.4.28, Translation:

When Hiraṇyakaśipu teases the great devotee Prahlāda, his own son, who is peaceful and sober and who has no enemy, I shall kill Hiraṇyakaśipu immediately, despite the benedictions of Brahmā.

SB 7.4.33, Translation:

Although Prahlāda Mahārāja was born in a family of asuras, he himself was not an asura but a great devotee of Lord Viṣṇu. Unlike the other asuras, he was never envious of Vaiṣṇavas. He was not agitated when put into danger, and he was neither directly nor indirectly interested in the fruitive activities described in the Vedas. Indeed, he considered everything material to be useless, and therefore he was completely devoid of material desires. He always controlled his senses and life air, and being of steady intelligence and determination, he subdued all lusty desires.

SB 7.4.35, Translation:

In any assembly where there are discourses about saints and devotees, O King Yudhiṣṭhira, even the enemies of the demons, namely the demigods, what to speak of you, would cite Prahlāda Mahārāja as an example of a great devotee.

SB 7.4.36, Purport:

After many births and deaths, he who is actually in knowledge surrenders unto Me, knowing Me to be the cause of all causes and all that is. Such a great soul is very rare." A great devotee of Kṛṣṇa, the son of Vasudeva, is a great soul very rarely to be found. Prahlāda Mahārāja's attachment for Kṛṣṇa will be explained in the next verse. Kṛṣṇa-graha-gṛhītātmā. Prahlāda Mahārāja's heart was always filled with thoughts of Kṛṣṇa. Therefore Prahlāda Mahārāja is the ideal devotee in Kṛṣṇa consciousness.

SB 7.5.23-24, Purport:

In other words, one who is attached to Kṛṣṇa should chant and hear from other pure devotees who are also attached to Lord Kṛṣṇa. The same principle applies for devotees attracted by Lord Rāma, Lord Nṛsiṁha and other forms of the Lord. Because Kṛṣṇa is the ultimate form of the Lord (kṛṣṇas tu bhagavān svayam (SB 1.3.28)), it is best to hear about Lord Kṛṣṇa's name, form and pastimes from a realized devotee who is particularly attracted by the form of Lord Kṛṣṇa. In Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, great devotees like Śukadeva Gosvāmī have specifically described Lord Kṛṣṇa's holy name, form and qualities. Unless one hears about the holy name, form and qualities of the Lord, one cannot clearly understand the other processes of devotional service. Therefore Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu recommends that one chant the holy name of Kṛṣṇa. paraṁ vijayate śrī-kṛṣṇa-saṅkīrtanam. If one is fortunate enough to hear from the mouth of realized devotees, he is very easily successful on the path of devotional service. Therefore hearing of the holy name, form and qualities of the Lord is essential.

SB 7.5.23-24, Purport:

"Parīkṣit Mahārāja attained salvation simply by hearing, and Śukadeva Gosvāmī attained salvation simply by chanting. Prahlāda Mahārāja attained salvation by remembering the Lord. The goddess of fortune, Lakṣmīdevī, attained perfection by worshiping the Lord's lotus feet. Pṛthu Mahārāja attained salvation by worshiping the Deity of the Lord. Akrūra attained salvation by offering prayers, Hanumān by rendering service, Arjuna by establishing friendship with the Lord, and Bali Mahārāja by offering everything to the service of the Lord." All these great devotees served the Lord according to a particular process, but every one of them attained salvation and became eligible to return home, back to Godhead. This is explained in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam.

SB 7.7.10, Translation and Purport:

Nārada Muni replied: The child within this woman's womb is faultless and sinless. Indeed, he is a great devotee, a powerful servant of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Therefore you will not be able to kill him.

There have been many instances in which demons or nondevotees have attempted to kill a devotee, but they have never been able to destroy a great devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The Lord promises in Bhagavad-gītā (9.31), kaunteya pratijānīhi na me bhaktaḥ praṇaśyati. This is a declaration by the Supreme Personality of Godhead that His devotee cannot be killed by demons. Prahlāda Mahārāja is the vivid example of the truth of this promise. Nārada Muni told the King of heaven, "it would be impossible for you to kill the child, even though you are demigods, and certainly it would be impossible for others."

SB 7.7.11, Purport:

Although King Indra and the other demigods are exalted personalities, they were so obedient to Nārada Muni that King Indra immediately accepted Nārada Muni's words concerning Prahlāda Mahārāja. This is called understanding by the paramparā system. Indra and the demigods did not know that a great devotee was in the womb of Kayādhu, the wife of Hiraṇyakaśipu, but they accepted the authoritative statements of Nārada Muni and immediately offered their respects to the devotee by circumambulating the woman in whose womb he was living. To understand God and the devotee by the paramparā system is the process of knowledge. There is no need to speculate about God and His devotee. One should accept the statements of a bona fide devotee and thus try to understand.

SB 7.8.5, Purport:

A devotee cares about the instructions of Kṛṣṇa, not those of demons or nondevotees. He does not give any respect to a demon, even though the demon be his father. Mac-chāsanodvṛttam: Prahlāda Mahārāja was disobedient to the orders of his demoniac father. Yama-kṣayam: every conditioned soul is under the control of Yamarāja, but Hiraṇyakaśipu said that he considered Prahlāda Mahārāja his deliverer, for Prahlāda would stop Hiraṇyakaśipu's repetition of birth and death. Because Prahlāda Mahārāja, being a great devotee, was better than any yogī, Hiraṇyakaśipu was to be brought among the society of bhakti-yogīs. Thus Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura has explained these words in a very interesting way as they can be interpreted from the side of Sarasvatī, the mother of learning.

SB 7.8.11, Purport:

This kind of difficulty always exists when a devotee preaches Kṛṣṇa consciousness to persons like Hiraṇyakaśipu, who are interested in money and women. (The word hiraṇya means "gold," and kaśipu refers to cushions or good bedding.) Moreover, a father does not like to be instructed by his son, especially if the father is a demon. Prahlāda Mahārāja's Vaiṣṇava preaching to his demoniac father was indirectly effective, for because of Hiraṇyakaśipu's excessive jealousy of Kṛṣṇa and His devotee, he was inviting Nṛsiṁha-deva to kill him very quickly. Thus he was expediting his being killed by the Lord Himself. Although Hiraṇyakaśipu was a demon, he is described here by the added word śrī. Why? The answer is that fortunately he had such a great devotee son as Prahlāda Mahārāja. Thus although he was a demon, he would attain salvation and return home, back to Godhead.

SB 7.9 Summary:

Whether one is a devotee of the Lord or is a nondevotee does not depend upon one's birth in a high or low family. Even Lord Brahmā and the goddess of fortune cannot achieve the full favor of the Lord, whereas a devotee can very easily attain such devotional service. The Lord's mercy is bestowed equally upon everyone, regardless of whether one is high or low. Because Prahlāda Mahārāja was blessed by Nārada Muni, Prahlāda became a great devotee. The Lord always saves the devotee from impersonalists and voidists. The Lord is present in everyone's heart as the Supersoul to give the living being protection and all benefits. Thus the Lord acts sometimes as the killer and sometimes as the protector. One should not accuse the Lord for any discrepancies. It is His plan that we see varieties of life within this material world. All of them are ultimately His mercy.

SB 7.9.26, Purport:

Because Prahlāda Mahārāja was situated on the spiritual platform, he had nothing to do with his body, which had been born of the modes of passion and ignorance. The symptoms of passion and ignorance are described in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (1.2.19) as lust and hankering (tadā rajas tamo-bhāvāḥ kāma-lobhādayaś ca ye). Prahlāda Mahārāja, being a great devotee, thought the body born of his father to be born of passion and ignorance, but because Prahlāda was fully engaged in the service of the Lord, his body did not belong to the material world. The pure Vaiṣṇava's body is spiritualized even in this life. For example, when iron is put into a fire it becomes red-hot and is no longer iron but fire. Similarly, the so-called material bodies of devotees who fully engage in the devotional service of the Lord, being constantly in the fire of spiritual life, have nothing to do with matter, but are spiritualized.

SB 7.9.38, Purport:

As the Lord appeared just to maintain Lord Brahmā from the attack of Madhu and Kaiṭabha, He also appeared to protect the great devotee Prahlāda Mahārāja. Similarly, Lord Caitanya appeared in order to protect the fallen souls of Kali-yuga. There are four yugas, or millenniums—Satya, Tretā, Dvāpara and Kali. In all the yugas but Kali-yuga, the Lord appears in various incarnations and asserts Himself as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, but although Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, who appears in Kali-yuga, is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, He never asserted Himself as such. On the contrary, whenever Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu was addressed as being as good as Kṛṣṇa, He blocked His ears with His hands, denying His identity with Kṛṣṇa, because He was playing the part of a devotee.

SB 7.14.2, Translation:

Nārada Muni replied: My dear King, those who stay at home as householders must act to earn their livelihood, and instead of trying to enjoy the results of their work themselves, they should offer these results to Kṛṣṇa, Vāsudeva. How to satisfy Vāsudeva in this life can be perfectly understood through the association of great devotees of the Lord.

SB 7.15.23, Translation:

By discussing spiritual knowledge one can conquer lamentation and illusion, by serving a great devotee one can become prideless, by keeping silent one can avoid obstacles on the path of mystic yoga, and simply by stopping sense gratification one can conquer envy.

SB Canto 8

SB 8.1 Summary:

I am continuously trying to publish books, as suggested by my spiritual master. Now, in this year, 1976, I have completed the Seventh Canto of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, and a summary of the Tenth Canto has already been published as Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Still, the Eighth Canto, Ninth Canto, Tenth Canto, Eleventh Canto and Twelfth Canto are yet to be published. On this occasion, therefore, I am praying to my spiritual master to give me strength to finish this work. I am neither a great scholar nor a great devotee; I am simply a humble servant of my spiritual master, and to the best of my ability I am trying to please him by publishing these books, with the cooperation of my disciples in America. Fortunately, scholars all over the world are appreciating these publications. Let us cooperatively publish more and more volumes of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam just to please His Divine Grace Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura.

SB 8.2.9-13, Translation:

In a valley of Trikūṭa Mountain there was a garden called Ṛtumat. This garden belonged to the great devotee Varuṇa and was a sporting place for the damsels of the demigods. Flowers and fruits grew there in all seasons. Among them were mandāras, pārijātas, pāṭalas, aśokas, campakas, cūtas, piyālas, panasas, mangoes, āmrātakas, kramukas, coconut trees, date trees and pomegranates. There were madhukas, palm trees, tamālas, asanas, arjunas, ariṣṭas, uḍumbaras, plakṣas, banyan trees, kiṁśukas and sandalwood trees. There were also picumardas, kovidāras, saralas, sura-dārus, grapes, sugarcane, bananas, jambu, badarīs, akṣas, abhayas and āmalakīs.

SB 8.4 Summary:

When Gajendra, by the mercy of the Lord, became one of the Lord's associates in Vaikuṇṭha, he got four hands. This achievement is called sārūpya-mukti, or the liberation of receiving a spiritual body exactly like that of Nārāyaṇa. Gajendra, in his previous birth, had been a great devotee of Lord Viṣṇu. His name was Indradyumna, and he was the King of the Tāmila country. Following the Vedic principles, this King retired from family life and constructed a small cottage in the Malayācala Hills, where he always worshiped the Supreme Personality of Godhead in silence. Agastya Ṛṣi, along with many disciples, once approached King Indradyumna's āśrama, but because the King was meditating on the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he could not receive Agastya Ṛṣi properly. Thus the ṛṣi became very angry and cursed the King to become a dull elephant. In accordance with this curse, the King was born as an elephant, and he forgot all about his previous activities in devotional service. Nonetheless, in his birth as an elephant, when he was dangerously attacked by the crocodile, he remembered his past life in devotional service and remembered a prayer he had learned in that life. Because of this prayer, he again received the mercy of the Lord. Thus he was immediately delivered, and he became one of the Lord's four-handed associates.

SB 8.5.24, Purport:

Anyone who is a devotee of Lord Kṛṣṇa is called a deva, and others, even though they may be devotees of demigods, are called asuras. Rāvaṇa, for example, was a great devotee of Lord Śiva, but he is described as an asura. Similarly, Hiraṇyakaśipu is described as a great devotee of Lord Brahmā, yet he was also an asura. Therefore, only the devotee of Lord Viṣṇu is called sura, not asura. Lord Kṛṣṇa is very much pleased with His devotees, even if they are not on the topmost stage of devotional service. Even on the lower stages of devotional service one is transcendental, and if one continues with devotional life, he continues to be a deva or sura. If one continues in this way, Kṛṣṇa will always be pleased with him and will give him all instructions so that he may very easily return home, back to Godhead.

SB 8.24.10, Translation:

During the Cākṣuṣa-manvantara there was a great king named Satyavrata who was a great devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Satyavrata performed austerities by subsisting only on water.

SB Canto 9

SB 9.2 Summary:

Kavi, the youngest son of Manu, was a great devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead from his very childhood. From Manu's son known as Karūṣa, a sect of kṣatriyas known as Kārūṣas was generated. Manu also had a son known as Dhṛṣṭa, from whom another sect of kṣatriyas was generated, but although they were born of one who had the qualities of a kṣatriya, they became brāhmaṇas. From Nṛga, another son of Manu, came the sons and grandsons known as Sumati, Bhūtajyoti and Vasu. From Vasu, in succession, came Pratīka, and from him came Oghavān.

SB 9.4.17, Translation:

Mahārāja Ambarīṣa was a great devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vāsudeva, and of the saintly persons who are the Lord's devotees. Because of this devotion, he thought of the entire universe as being as insignificant as a piece of stone.

SB 9.5.28, Translation:

By the grace of the Lord, those who hear about the activities of Mahārāja Ambarīṣa, the great devotee, certainly become liberated or become devotees without delay.

SB 9.11.25, Purport:

A pure devotee, therefore, must execute the order of the Lord and must not gratify his senses by remaining stagnant in one place, falsely proud, thinking that because he does not leave Vṛndāvana but chants in a solitary place he has become a great devotee. A devotee must carry out the order of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Caitanya Mahāprabhu said, yāre dekha, tāre kaha 'kṛṣṇa'-upadeśa (CC Madhya 7.128). Every devotee, therefore, should spread Kṛṣṇa consciousness by preaching, asking whomever he meets to accept the order of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The Lord says, sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja: (BG 18.66) "Abandon all varieties of religion and just surrender unto Me." This is the order of the Lord, who speaks as the supreme emperor. Everyone should be induced to accept this order, for this is victory (dig-vijaya). And it is the duty of the soldier, the devotee, to impress upon everyone this philosophy of life.

SB 9.24.67, Purport:

Paritrāṇāya sādhūnāṁ vināśāya ca duṣkṛtām (BG 4.8). The mission of Lord Kṛṣṇa was performed on the Battlefield of Kurukṣetra, for by the Lord's mercy Arjuna was victorious due to being a great devotee whereas the others were killed simply by the Lord's glance, which cleansed them of all sinful activities and enabled them to attain sārūpya. Finally, Lord Kṛṣṇa instructed Uddhava about the transcendental life of devotional service, and then, in due course of time, He returned to His abode. The Lord's instructions in the form of Bhagavad-gītā are full of jñāna and vairāgya, knowledge and renunciation. In the human form of life, one must learn these two things—how to become detached from the material world and how to acquire full knowledge in spiritual life. This is the Lord's mission (paritrāṇāya sādhūnāṁ vināśāya ca duṣkṛtām). After executing His complete mission, the Lord returned to His home, Goloka Vṛndāvana.

SB Canto 10.1 to 10.13

SB 10.1.14, Purport:

Śrīla Śukadeva Gosvāmī is described in this verse as bhāgavata-pradhānaḥ, whereas Mahārāja Parīkṣit is described as viṣṇu-rātam. Both words bear the same meaning; that is, Mahārāja Parīkṣit was a great devotee of Kṛṣṇa, and Śukadeva Gosvāmī was also a great saintly person and a great devotee of Kṛṣṇa. Combined together to present kṛṣṇa-kathā, they give great relief to suffering humanity.

anarthopaśamaṁ sākṣād
bhakti-yogam adhokṣaje
lokasyājānato vidvāṁś
cakre sātvata-saṁhitām

"The material miseries of the living entity, which are superfluous to him, can be directly mitigated by the linking process of devotional service. But the mass of people do not know this, and therefore the learned Vyāsadeva compiled this Vedic literature, Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, which is in relation to the Supreme Truth." (SB 1.7.6) People in general are unaware that the message of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam can give all of human society relief from the pangs of Kali-yuga (kali-kalmaṣa-ghnam).

SB 10.2.26, Purport:

"If one surrenders unto Me sincerely, saying, 'My Lord, from this day I am fully surrendered unto You,' I always give him protection. That is My vow." (Rāmāyaṇa, Yuddha-kāṇḍa 18.33) The demigods offered their prayers to the Supreme Personality of Godhead because He had now appeared in the womb of His devotee Devakī to protect all the devotees harassed by Kaṁsa and his lieutenants. Thus the Lord acts as satyavrata. The protection given by the Supreme Personality of Godhead cannot be compared to the protection given by the demigods. It is said that Rāvaṇa was a great devotee of Lord Śiva, but when Lord Rāmacandra went to kill him, Lord Śiva could not give him protection.

SB 10.2.30, Purport:

In regard to the word mahat-kṛtena, it is also significant that the process shown by great devotees is not only for them but also for others. If things are made easy, this affords facility for the person who has made them easy and also for others who follow the same principles. The process recommended in this verse for crossing the ocean of nescience is easy not only for the devotee but also for common persons who follow the devotee (mahājano yena gataḥ sa panthāḥ (CC Madhya 17.186)).

SB 10.8.4, Translation:

O my lord, O great devotee, persons like you move from one place to another not for their own interests but for the sake of poor-hearted gṛhasthas (householders). Otherwise they have no interest in going from one place to another.

SB 10.10 Summary:

Nalakūvara and Maṇigrīva were great devotees of Lord Śiva, but because of material opulence they became so extravagant and senseless that one day they were enjoying with naked girls in a lake and shamelessly walking here and there. Suddenly Nārada Muni passed by, but they were so maddened by their wealth and false prestige that even though they saw Nārada Muni present, they remained naked and were not even ashamed. In other words, because of opulence and false prestige, they lost their sense of common decency.

SB Cantos 10.14 to 12 (Translations Only)

SB 10.39.56-57, Translation:

As the great devotee Akrūra beheld all this, he became extremely pleased and felt enthused with transcendental devotion. His intense ecstasy caused His bodily hairs to stand on end and tears to flow from his eyes, drenching his entire body. Somehow managing to steady himself, Akrūra bowed his head to the ground. Then he joined his palms in supplication and, in a voice choked with emotion, very slowly and attentively began to pray.

SB 10.62.2, Translation:

Śukadeva Gosvāmī said: Bāṇa was the oldest of the hundred sons fathered by the great saint Bali Mahārāja, who gave the whole earth in charity to Lord Hari when He appeared as Vāmanadeva. Bāṇāsura, born from Bali's semen, became a great devotee of Lord Śiva. His behavior was always respectable, and he was generous, intelligent, truthful and firm in his vows. The beautiful city of Śoṇitapura was under his dominion. Because Lord Śiva had favored him, the very demigods waited on Bāṇāsura like menial servants. Once, when Śiva was dancing his tāṇḍava-nṛtya, Bāṇa especially satisfied the lord by playing a musical accompaniment with his one thousand arms.

SB 10.83.3, Translation:

(Lord Kṛṣṇa's relatives said:) O master, how can misfortune arise for those who have even once freely drunk the nectar coming from Your lotus feet? This intoxicating liquor pours into the drinking cups of their ears, having flowed from the minds of great devotees through their mouths. It destroys the embodied souls' forgetfulness of the creator of their bodily existence.

SB 10.86.59, Translation:

O King, thus the Personality of Godhead, who is devoted to His own devotees, stayed for some time with His two great devotees Śrutadeva and Bahulāśva, teaching them the behavior of perfect saints. Then the Lord returned to Dvārakā.

SB 11.11.26-27, Translation:

Śrī Uddhava said: My dear Lord, O Supreme Personality of Godhead, what type of person do You consider to be a true devotee, and what type of devotional service is approved by great devotees as worthy of being offered to Your Lordship? My dear ruler of the universal controllers, O Lord of Vaikuṇṭha and almighty God of the universe, I am Your devotee, and because I love You I have no other shelter than You. Therefore please explain this to me.

SB 11.29.47, Translation:

Thereupon, placing the Lord deeply within his heart, the great devotee Uddhava went to Badarikāśrama. By engaging there in austerities, he attained to the Lord's personal abode, which had been described to him by the only friend of the universe, Lord Kṛṣṇa Himself.

SB 11.30.1, Translation:

King Parīkṣit said: After the great devotee Uddhava left for the forest, what did the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the protector of all living beings, do in the city of Dvārakā?

SB 12.1.38, Translation:

There will be many such uncivilized kings ruling at the same time, O King Parīkṣit, and they will all be uncharitable, possessed of fierce tempers, and great devotees of irreligion and falsity.

SB 12.11.1, Translation:

Śrī Śaunaka said: O Sūta, you are the best of learned men and a great devotee of the Supreme Lord. Therefore we now inquire from you about the definitive conclusion of all tantra scriptures.

Page Title:Great devotees (SB cantos 5 - 12)
Created:04 of Oct, 2011
Totals by Section:BG=0, SB=89, CC=0, OB=0, Lec=0, Con=0, Let=0
No. of Quotes:89