The residents of Vṛndāvana are so glorious that everyone is prepared to render devotional service to the Lord." It is stated in another verse of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (10.35.11): "O just see how the cranes and swans on the water are singing the glories of the Lord! Indeed, they are standing in the water meditating and worshiping Him." It is stated elsewhere in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (2.4.18): "Even the aborigines and uncivilized human beings like Kirātas, Hūṇas, Āndhra, Pulinda, Pulkaśa, Ābhīra, Śumbha, Yavana and Khasa, as well as many other human beings in the lower species, can all be purified simply by taking shelter of the pure devotees." Therefore Śukadeva Gosvāmī offered his respectful obeisances unto Lord Viṣṇu, whose devotees can work so wonderfully.
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Shelter of a pure devotee
- 1 Bhagavad-gita As It Is
- 2 Srimad-Bhagavatam
- 3 Other Books by Srila Prabhupada
- 4 Lectures
- 5 Correspondence
Bhagavad-gita As It Is
BG Chapters 7 - 12
Everyone is eligible for the supreme destination. In the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (2.4.18) it is stated that even the lowest, who are called caṇḍālas (dog-eaters), can be purified by association with a pure devotee. Therefore devotional service and the guidance of a pure devotee are so strong that there is no discrimination between the lower and higher classes of men; anyone can take to it. The most simple man taking shelter of the pure devotee can be purified by proper guidance.
BG Chapters 13 - 18
The worship of the Supreme Lord will then undoubtedly take place. Lord Caitanya has said that in this age no one needs to change his position, but one should give up the endeavor to understand the Absolute Truth by speculative reasoning. One should learn to become the servant of those who are in knowledge of the Supreme Lord. If one is fortunate enough to take shelter of a pure devotee, hear from him about self-realization and follow in his footsteps, one will be gradually elevated to the position of a pure devotee.
SB Canto 1
In Bhagavad-gītā it is said that any person, regardless of birth as śūdra, woman, or merchant, can take shelter of the lotus feet of the Lord and by so doing can return to Godhead. To take shelter of the lotus feet of the Lord means to take shelter of the pure devotees. The pure devotees whose only business is serving are honored by the names Prabhupāda and Viṣṇupāda, which indicate such devotees to be representatives of the lotus feet of the Lord. Anyone, therefore, who takes shelter of the lotus feet of a pure devotee by accepting the pure devotee as his spiritual master can be at once purified. Such devotees of the Lord are honored equally with the Lord because they are engaged in the most confidential service of the Lord, for they deliver out of the material world the fallen souls whom the Lord wants to return home, back to Godhead.
SB Canto 2
In the Bhagavad-gītā (9.32) it is said by the Lord that there is no bar to becoming a devotee of the Lord (even for those who are lowborn, or women, śūdras or vaiśyas), and by becoming a devotee everyone is eligible to return home, back to Godhead. The only qualification is that one take shelter of a pure devotee of the Lord who has thorough knowledge in the transcendental science of Kṛṣṇa (Bhagavad-gītā and Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam). Anyone from any part of the world who becomes well conversant in the science of Kṛṣṇa becomes a pure devotee and a spiritual master for the general mass of people and may reclaim them by purification of heart.
SB Canto 4
One should take shelter of a pure devotee, who has nothing to do with this material world but is simply engaged in devotional service. By serving him only, one can transcend the qualitative material condition. In this verse it is recommended (yogeśvara-upāsanayā) that one serve the lotus feet of the topmost yogī, or the devotee. To serve the topmost devotee means to hear from him about the glories of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. To hear the glories of the Supreme Personality of Godhead from the mouth of a pure devotee is to acquire a pious life.
SB Canto 5
As stated in Caitanya-caritāmṛta (CC Madhya 22.54):
- "sādhu-saṅga", "sādhu-saṅga"—sarva-śāstre kaya
- lava-mātra sādhu-saṅge sarva-siddhi haya
It is a fact that if one takes shelter of a pure devotee, one attains all perfection, even if the association is a short one. A sādhu is a pure devotee of the Lord.
When King Parīkṣit asked Śukadeva Gosvāmī about the direct meaning of the material forest, Śukadeva Gosvāmī replied as follows: My dear King, a man belonging to the mercantile community (vaṇik) is always interested in earning money. Sometimes he enters the forest to acquire some cheap commodities like wood and earth and sell them in the city at good prices. Similarly, the conditioned soul, being greedy, enters this material world for some material profit. Gradually he enters the deepest part of the forest, not really knowing how to get out. Having entered the material world, the pure soul becomes conditioned by the material atmosphere, which is created by the external energy under the control of Lord Viṣṇu. Thus the living entity comes under the control of the external energy, daivī māyā. Living independently and bewildered in the forest, he does not attain the association of devotees who are always engaged in the service of the Lord. Once in the bodily conception, he gets different types of bodies one after the other under the influence of material energy and impelled by the modes of material nature (sattva-guṇa, rajo-guṇa and tamo-guṇa). In this way the conditioned soul goes sometimes to the heavenly planets, sometimes to the earthly planets and sometimes to the lower planets and lower species. Thus he suffers continuously due to different types of bodies. These sufferings and pains are sometimes mixed. Sometimes they are very severe, and sometimes they are not. These bodily conditions are acquired due to the conditioned soul's mental speculation. He uses his mind and five senses to acquire knowledge, and these bring about the different bodies and different conditions. Using the senses under the control of the external energy, māyā, the living entity suffers the miserable conditions of material existence. He is actually searching for relief, but he is generally baffled, although sometimes he is relieved after great difficulty. Struggling for existence in this way, he cannot get the shelter of pure devotees, who are like bumblebees engaged in loving service at the lotus feet of Lord Viṣṇu."
The great saint Jaḍa Bharata described both the miserable condition and the means to get out. The only way out of it is association with devotees, and this association is very easy. Although unfortunate people also get this opportunity, due to their great misfortune they cannot take shelter of pure devotees, and consequently they continuously suffer. Nonetheless, this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement insists that everyone take to this path by adopting the chanting of the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra.
Even if one wanders for many millions of years, from the time of creation until the time of annihilation, one cannot get free from the path of material existence unless one receives shelter at the lotus feet of a pure devotee. As a monkey takes shelter of the branch of a banyan tree and thinks he is enjoying, the conditioned soul, not knowing the real interest of his life, takes shelter of the path of karma-kāṇḍa, fruitive activities. Sometimes he is elevated to the heavenly planets by such activities, and sometimes he again descends to earth. This is described by Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu as brahmāṇḍa bhramite. However, if by Kṛṣṇa's grace one is fortunate enough to come under the shelter of the guru, by the mercy of Kṛṣṇa he receives lessons on how to execute devotional service to the Supreme Lord.
Similarly, Viśvanātha Cakravartī, a great Vaiṣṇava, also advises, yasya prasādād bhagavat-prasādaḥ: ** "By the mercy of the spiritual master one receives the mercy of Kṛṣṇa." This is the same advice given by Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu (guru-kṛṣṇa-prasāde pāya bhakti-latā-bīja (CC Madhya 19.151)). This is essential. One must come to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, and therefore one must take shelter of a pure devotee. Thus one can become free from the clutches of matter.
SB Canto 6
"Kirātas, Hūṇas, Āndhras, Pulindas, Pulkaśas, Ābhīras, Śumbhas, Yavanas and members of the Khasa races, and even others addicted to sinful acts can be purified by taking shelter of the devotees of the Lord, for He is the supreme power. I beg to offer my respectful obeisances unto Him." Anyone can be purified if he takes shelter of a pure devotee and molds his character according to the pure devotee's direction. Then, even if one is a Kirāta, Āndhra, Pulinda or whatever, he can be purified and elevated to the position of a mahā-pauruṣya.
SB Canto 7
It is stated here that this confidential knowledge is extremely difficult to understand, yet it is very easy to understand if one takes shelter of a pure devotee. This confidential knowledge is also mentioned at the end of Bhagavad-gītā, where the Lord says, sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja: (BG 18.66) "Abandon all varieties of religion and just surrender unto Me." This knowledge is an extremely confidential secret, but it can be understood if one approaches the Supreme Personality of Godhead through the bona fide agent, the spiritual master in the disciplic succession from Nārada. Prahlāda Mahārāja wanted to impress upon the sons of the demons that although such knowledge can be understood only by a saintly person like Nārada, they should not be disappointed, for if one takes shelter of Nārada instead of material teachers, this knowledge is possible to understand. Understanding does not depend upon high parentage. The living entity is certainly pure on the spiritual platform, and therefore anyone who attains the spiritual platform by the grace of the spiritual master can also understand this confidential knowledge.
To save oneself, one must take shelter of a pure devotee. Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura therefore says, chāḍiyā vaiṣṇava-sevā nistāra pāyeche kebā. If one wants to save himself from material nature's onslaughts, which arise because of the material body, one must become Kṛṣṇa conscious and try to fully understand Kṛṣṇa. As stated in Bhagavad-gītā (4.9), janma karma ca me divyam evaṁ yo vetti tattvataḥ. One should understand Kṛṣṇa in truth, and this one can do only by serving a pure devotee. Thus Prahlāda Mahārāja prays that Lord Nṛsiṁhadeva place him in touch with a pure devotee and servant instead of awarding him material opulence. Every intelligent man within this material world must follow Prahlāda Mahārāja. Mahājano yena gataḥ sa panthāḥ (CC Madhya 17.186). Prahlāda Mahārāja did not want to enjoy the estate left by his father; rather, he wanted to become a servant of the servant of the Lord (CC Madhya 13.80). The illusory human civilization that perpetually endeavors for happiness through material advancement is rejected by Prahlāda Mahārāja and those who strictly follow in his footsteps.
One should not be proud of becoming directly the servant of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Rather, one must seek a pure devotee, a servant of the Lord, and engage oneself in the service of such a servant. The more one becomes the servant of the servant, the more one becomes perfect in devotional service. This is also the injunction of Bhagavad-gītā: evaṁ paramparā-prāptam imaṁ rājarṣayo viduḥ (BG 4.2). One can understand the science of the Supreme Personality of Godhead simply by the paramparā system. In this regard, Śrīla Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura says, tāṅdera caraṇa sevi bhakta-sane vāsa: "Let me serve the lotus feet of the devotees of the Lord, and let me live with devotees." Janame janame haya, ei abhilāṣa. Following Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura, one should aspire to be a servant of the Lord's servant, life after life. Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura also sings, tumi ta' ṭhākura, tomāra kukura, baliyā jānaha more: "O my Lord, O Vaiṣṇava, please consider me your dog." One must become the dog of a Vaiṣṇava, a pure devotee, for a pure devotee can deliver Kṛṣṇa without difficulty. Kṛṣṇa se tomāra, kṛṣṇa dite pāra. Kṛṣṇa is the property of His pure devotee, and if we take shelter of a pure devotee, he can deliver Kṛṣṇa very easily. Prahlāda wants to engage in the service of a devotee, and therefore he prays to Kṛṣṇa, "My dear Lord, kindly give me the shelter of Your very dear devotee so that I may engage in his service and You may then be pleased." Mad-bhakta-pūjābhyadhikā (SB 11.19.21). The Lord says, "Engaging in the service of My devotee is better than trying to engage in My devotional service."
SB Canto 10.1 to 10.13
We should strictly follow this injunction and never try to hear from Māyāvādīs, impersonalists, voidists, politicians or so-called scholars. Strictly avoiding such inauspicious association, we should simply hear from pure devotees. Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī therefore recommends, śrī-guru-padāśrayaḥ: one must seek shelter at the lotus feet of a pure devotee who can be one's guru. Caitanya Mahāprabhu advises that a guru is one who strictly follows the instructions of Bhagavad-gītā: yare dekha, tare kaha, 'kṛṣṇa'-upadeśa (CC Madhya 7.128). A juggler, a magician or one who speaks nonsense as an academic career is not a guru. Rather, a guru is one who presents Bhagavad-gītā, Kṛṣṇa's instructions, as it is. Śravaṇa is very important; one must hear from the Vaiṣṇava sādhu, guru and śāstra.
Other Books by Srila Prabhupada
Teachings of Lord Caitanya
Krsna, The Supreme Personality of Godhead
Lord Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the Supersoul of all living entities, knows everyone's heart very well. He is especially inclined to the brāhmaṇa devotees. Lord Kṛṣṇa is also called brahmaṇya-deva, which means that He is worshiped by the brāhmaṇas. Therefore it is understood that a devotee who is fully surrendered unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead has already acquired the position of a brāhmaṇa. Without becoming a brāhmaṇa, one cannot approach the Supreme Brahman, Lord Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is especially concerned with vanquishing the distress of His devotees, and He is the only shelter of pure devotees.
Bhagavad-gita As It Is Lectures
One has to increase his attachment for Kṛṣṇa. We have got attachment for so many things. We have to divert the attachment towards Kṛṣṇa. Mayy āsakta-manāḥ pārtha yogam. This is the yogaṁ yuñjan. One has to perform, execute, mad-āśrayaḥ. This yoga can be executed when we take shelter of Kṛṣṇa, mad-āśrayaḥ. Mad-āśrayaḥ means either you take shelter of Kṛṣṇa or one who has taken shelter of Kṛṣṇa. Mad-āśrayaḥ. In two ways you can take it, the meaning. Mad-āśrayaḥ. One who does not know except Kṛṣṇa, he's also mad-āśrayaḥ. And one who has taken shelter of Kṛṣṇa, that is also mad-āśrayaḥ. So one has to become a devotee, or to take shelter of a pure devotee to practice the yoga system. Ādau gurvāśrayam. That is our system. That is our system. That is the Vedic system.
Kirāta-huṇāndhra-pulinda-pulkaśā ābhīra-śumbhā yavanāḥ khasādayaḥ, ye 'nye ca pāpāḥ (SB 2.4.18). These names are mentioned, but there are many others whose names are not mentioned. Ye 'nye ca pāpāḥ. They are called pāpāḥ. Pāpa means very sinful life. Yad-apāśrayāśrayāḥ. If such persons, such lower-grade persons even, they take shelter of a pure devotee, then they become purified. Śudhyanti, they become purified. How? Prabhaviṣṇave namaḥ. That is the special prerogative power of Lord Viṣṇu. He can deliver anyone in any condition of life. Prabhaviṣṇave namaḥ. That is extra, extraordinary, inconceivable power.
So it doesn't matter where we are born. If we take to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, then he becomes a śuddha, śuci, purified, and he is eligible to go back to home, to back to Godhead. So to take the shelter of a pure devotee means he knows what is pravṛtti and what is nivṛtti. All our Vedic literature is meant for nivṛtti. Pravṛttir eṣā bhūtānāṁ nivṛttis tu mahā-phalā. These, all living creatures, who are struggling for existence in this material world, that is their pravṛtti, to enjoy this material world. But when one becomes inclined to nivṛtti, he becomes devatā. So this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement which was inaugurated by Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya Mahāprabhu is for nivṛtti-mārga. Nivṛtti-mārga means "No more material enjoyment. Let me make progress towards Kṛṣṇa consciousness." Therefore this devotional service or bhakti-yoga, it is called nivṛtti-mārga.
...directly taking shelter of Kṛṣṇa or to take shelter of a pure devotee who is under the shelter of Kṛṣṇa. Mad-āśrayaḥ. So if one takes shelter of a pure devotee... Just like electricity: the powerhouse is far away, but the power is coming. Suppose your body is electrified, and if I touch, then my body immediately becomes electrified. And if somebody touches me, then other's body. This is electric. Similarly, one who is pure devotee, he's authorized by Kṛṣṇa, he's electrified.
So if one takes shelter of a pure devotee, then he becomes purified. Yad-apāśrayāśrayāḥ śudhyanti. That is the statement given by Śukadeva Gosvāmī. How the caṇḍālas can become purified? The example I have already stated. Then at the end, Śukadeva Gosvāmī says, prabhaviṣṇave namaḥ. This is the supreme transcendental power of Viṣṇu. He can do. Sometimes they say that unless the body is changed, how a caṇḍāla can become purified? Yes, body is changing. Because we do not know how the body is changing... Kṛṣṇa says in the Bhagavad-gītā, tathā dehāntara-prāptiḥ. Dehāntara-prāptiḥ. Dehino 'smin yathā dehe kaumāraṁ yauvanaṁ jarā tathā (BG 2.13), like that. Tathā means "like that." Dehāntara-prāptiḥ. So these are dehāntara. Dehino 'smin yathā dehe kaumāraṁ yauvanaṁ jarā. This is dehāntara. Every moment we are changing our body. This is dehāntara.
Kṛṣṇa says, the greatest authority. How you can say that there is no dehāntara? He has dehāntara. Suppose in my childhood I am born in a caṇḍāla family, but if by initiation, by taking shelter of a pure devotee, I become initiated, so dehāntara is there, going on. So if I take initiation seriously, so in the next dehāntara... Suppose yesterday I was a caṇḍāla. Now by this time there is dehāntara, and if I am purified by initiation... So this argument... Dehāntara, is already there. Scientifically, in modern understanding, and on the authority of Kṛṣṇa's statement, dehāntara is going on. Not that somebody was European or... We take Europeans as mlecchas or yavanas. Yes, he was yesterday mleccha and yavanas, but he has changed his body, and after changing if he's initiated, then dehāntara. Śudhyanti, he's purified. Śudhyanti.
The śūdras cannot learn all these veda. Because śūdras have no right to understand Vedic knowledge. It is meant for the brāhmaṇas, kṣatriyas. Even not for the vaiśyas. Striyo vaiśyās tathā śūdrāḥ. They are rejected, woman and vaiśya and śūdra. Kṛṣṇa says. Striyo vaiśyās tathā śūdrāḥ. But Kṛṣṇa says te 'pi yānti parāṁ gatim: "Even woman, and śūdra and vaiśyas, low grade, they can also get parāṁ gatim, promotion to the transcendental world." How? Māṁ hi pārtha vyapāśritya ye 'pi syuḥ pāpa-yonayaḥ (BG 9.32). If you take to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, then even these low-grade born persons, beginning from striya śūdra vaiśya, and down, caṇḍālas... Caṇḍālas means less than the caṇḍāla. Kirāta-hūṇāndhra-pulinda-pulkaśāḥ. They are caṇḍālas. Kirāta means the black clan, or the Africans. So they are called kirāta. Hūṇāndhra-pulinda-pulkaśā ābhīra-śumbhā yavanāḥ khasādayaḥ (SB 2.4.18). Yavanas, khasādaya, Mongolians, without any moustaches. Kirāta-hūṇāndhra-pulinda-pulkaśā ābhīra-śumbhā yavanāḥ khasādayaḥ ye 'nye ca pāpāḥ. "Even there are still more low-grade, sinful society," ye 'nye ca pāpā yad-apāśrayāśrayāḥ, "if he takes the shelter of a pure devotee, śudhyanti, becomes purified." Becomes purified. How? Śudhyanti? Because prabhaviṣṇave namaḥ. Lord Viṣṇu has got so exalted power that through His devotee He can purify anyone. Never mind, even one happens to be caṇḍāla, and what to speak of others.
Kṛṣṇa personally says, māṁ hi pārtha vyapāśritya ye 'pi syuḥ pāpa-yonayaḥ (BG 9.32). Pāpa-yoni... Those who are born in the family of mlecchas, yavanas, or the śvapacas, they are called pāpa-yoni. But Kṛṣṇa says, "Even they, the born in the pāpa-yoni..." Yathā bījaṁ yathā, yathā bījaṁ yathā yoni. The father is the bījam. He gives the semina, and mother is the source of birth. So combination of father, mother... So pāpa-yoni. Therefore yoni. Yoni means source of birth. So Kṛṣṇa says pāpa-yonayaḥ, plural number, yonayaḥ. Yoni, this word, śabda, so the plural number, yonayaḥ... There are many different types... That is also mentioned in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. What are that? Kirāta-hūṇāndhra-pulinda-pulkaśā ābhīra-śumbhā yavanāḥ khasādayaḥ ye 'nye ca pāpāḥ (SB 2.4.18). These are mentioned, pāpa-yoni. And less than them, if there are still pāpa-yoni, śudhyanti yad-apāśrayāśrayāḥ, if such persons take shelter of a pure devotee, he's śudhyanti. This is the shastric injunction. He becomes purified because the pure devotee knows how to purify the pāpa-yoni. He knows. That rascal is not a pure devotee. He does not know. Therefore he thinks, "Unless the birth is changed, how one can be purified?" He does not know the process.
Kirāta-hūṇāndhra-pulinda-pulkaśā ābhīra-śumbhā yavanāḥ khasādayaḥ, ye 'nye ca pāpā yad-apāśrayāśrayāḥ (SB 2.4.18). If he has taken shelter of a pure devotee—never mind he's a kirāta, hūṇa, āndhra, pulinda, pulkaśā—he is śudhyanti. He becomes purified, and gradually he understands Kṛṣṇa.
One who is inquisitive to understand Brahman—brahmeti paramātmeti bhagavān iti śabdyate (SB 1.2.11)—he should be given chance. Just like there is a little fire. Fan it. Fanning, fanning, fanning, and it becomes a big fire. So our process is that. Anyone, we pick up anyone, kirāta-hūṇāndhra-pulinda-pulkaśā, what to speak of the śūdra. Striyaḥ śūdrās tathā vaiśyaḥ. In the ordinary way the stri, woman, śūdra, the fourth-grade man, and vaiśya, they are taken together, not very intelligent. But Pāñcarātriki-vidhi offers facility even persons who are lower than these striya, śūdra, vaiśya. Kirāta-hūṇāndhra-pulinda-pulkaśā ābhīra-śumbhā yavanāḥ khasādayaḥ, ye 'nye ca pāpā (SB 2.4.18). And less than that, ye 'nye ca pāpa yad-apāśrayāśrayāḥ... A devotee, a pure devotee of the Lord, and if these persons take shelter of a pure devotee of the Lord, then śudhyanti—they become purified by following the injunction of the spiritual master. He knows how to deal with them, how to elevate them to the brahminical position. So that is not artificial. Śāstra says, Bhāgavata says, "Yes. By such expert management these kirāta-hūṇāndhra, lower than the śūdras, śudhyanti..." Śudhyanti.
Nectar of Devotion Lectures
Kirāta-hūṇāndhra-pulinda-pulkaśā ābhīra-śumbhā yavanāḥ khasādayaḥ, ye'nye ca pāpā (SB 2.4.18). These are the list of low-grade human society, kirāta-hūṇāndhra. And there may be others also. (Hindi) There may be others. Ye 'nye ca pāpā. Anye—any kinds of sinful man, śudhyanti yad-upāśrayāśrayāḥ, if such men take shelter of a pure devotee, then he purifies him. Śudhyanti.
By our karma, we may be high born or low born. That does not matter. Ahaituky apratihatā. Kṛṣṇa consciousness cannot be checked by any material impediment. That is not possible. Ahaituky apratihatā. It is natural. And Kṛṣṇa says, māṁ hi pārtha vyapāśritya ye 'pi syuḥ pāpa-yonayaḥ (BG 9.32). He says that even though some people are considered to be pāpa-yoni, low-born, it doesn't matter, but he can accept the shelter of the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa. Prabhaviṣṇave namaḥ. Prabhaviṣṇave namaḥ. Kirāta-hūṇāndhra-pulinda-pulkaśā ābhīra-śumbhā yavanaḥ khasādayaḥ, ye 'nye ca pāpā. Still more low-born than these people, śudhyanti, they can be purified if they actually take shelter of a pure devotee. They can be purified. That is the injunction of the śāstras, Śukadeva Gosvāmī. Śudhyanti. People may argue how such low-born people can be purified. That reply is: prabhaviṣṇave namaḥ. It is the supreme power of Lord Viṣṇu. It is possible.
People are not interested in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, and then, they are misled by blind leaders. So how, what is the solution? That is Prahlāda Mahārāja saying,
- naiṣāṁ matis tāvad urukramāṅghriṁ
- spṛśaty anarthāpagamo yad-arthaḥ
- mahīyasāṁ pāda-rajo-'bhiṣekaṁ
- niṣkiñcanānāṁ na vṛṇīta yāvat
- (SB 7.5.32)
Therefore one has to take shelter of a pure devotee. That is the only solution.
This word mad-āśrayaḥ is very important, because you cannot increase your attachment for Kṛṣṇa without being mad-āśrayaḥ. Mad-āśrayaḥ means to be directly under the direction of Kṛṣṇa or to be directly under the direction of somebody who has taken shelter of Kṛṣṇa. Therefore He recommends mad-āśrayaḥ. You cannot execute the yoga system, devotional service, bhakti-yoga, without being under the control of somebody who is under the control of Kṛṣṇa. Śrīla Śukadeva Gosvāmī has recommended therefore, yad upāśrayāśraya. One has to take shelter of a pure devotee; then he becomes purified.
Upāśraya means to take shelter of a pure devotee. And in that case,
- ābhīra-śumbhā yavanāḥ khasādayaḥ
- ye 'nye ca pāpā yad-apāśrayāśrayāḥ
- śudhyanti (tasmai) prabhaviṣṇave namaḥ
- (SB 2.4.18)
So not only those who are highly elevated brāhmaṇa, kṣatriya, vaiśya, śūdra... Śūdras... Less than śūdra, they are called kirāta, hūṇa, āndhra, pulinda, pulkaśā, ābhīra, yavanāḥ, khasādayaḥ. They also can be purified if they take shelter of a pure devotee.
Actually, without the mercy of a devotee nobody can approach the Lord directly—and it is easier to get mercy of a devotee than to get mercy of the Lord. So therefore the most intelligent way of approaching God is to take shelter of a pure devotee.
|Compiled by||Syamananda +, Visnu Murti + and MadhuGopaldas +|
|Completed sections||ALL +|
|Date of first entry||January 2, 0008 JL +|
|Date of last entry||December 14, 0009 JL +|
|Total quotes||33 +|
|Total quotes by section||BG: 2 +, SB: 13 +, CC: 0 +, OB: 2 +, Lec: 15 +, Conv: 0 + and Let: 1 +|