The ancient, eternal Godhead, who is foremost amongst all great personalities, obtained the opulence of His staunch reputation, which purifies the entire universe, by worshiping the lotus feet of those brahmanas and Vaisnavas
SB Canto 4
The Supreme Personality of Godhead, the ancient, eternal Godhead, who is foremost amongst all great personalities, obtained the opulence of His staunch reputation, which purifies the entire universe, by worshiping the lotus feet of those brāhmaṇas and Vaiṣṇavas.
The Supreme Person is described herein as brahmaṇya-deva. Brahmaṇya refers to the brāhmaṇas, the Vaiṣṇavas or the brahminical culture, and deva means "worshipable Lord." Therefore unless one is on the transcendental platform of being a Vaiṣṇava or on the highest platform of material goodness (as a brāhmaṇa), he cannot appreciate the Supreme Personality of Godhead. In the lower stages of ignorance and passion, it is difficult to appreciate or understand the Supreme Lord. Therefore the Lord is described herein as the worshipable Deity for persons in brahminical and Vaiṣṇava culture.
- namo brahmaṇya-devāya
- go-brāhmaṇa-hitāya ca
- jagad-dhitāya kṛṣṇāya
- govindāya namo namaḥ
- (Viṣṇu Purāṇa 1.19.65)
Lord Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is the prime protector of brahminical culture and the cow. Without knowing and respecting these, one cannot realize the science of God, and without this knowledge, any welfare activities or humanitarian propaganda cannot be successful. The Lord is puruṣa, or the supreme enjoyer. Not only is He the enjoyer when He appears as a manifested incarnation, but He is the enjoyer since time immemorial, from the very beginning (purātanaḥ), and eternally (nityam). Yac-caraṇābhivandanāt: Pṛthu Mahārāja said that the Supreme Personality of Godhead attained this opulence of eternal fame simply by worshiping the lotus feet of the brāhmaṇas. In the Bhagavad-gītā it is said that the Lord does not need to work to achieve material gain. Since He is perpetually supremely perfect, He does not need to obtain anything, but still it is said that He obtained His opulences by worshiping the lotus feet of the brāhmaṇas. These are His exemplary actions. When Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa was in Dvārakā, He offered His respects by bowing down at the lotus feet of Nārada. When Sudāmā Vipra came to His house, Lord Kṛṣṇa personally washed his feet and gave him a seat on His personal bed. Although He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa offered His respects to Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira and Kuntī. The Lord's exemplary behavior is to teach us. We should learn from His personal behavior how to give protection to the cow, how to cultivate brahminical qualities and how to respect the brāhmaṇas and the Vaiṣṇavas. The Lord says in Bhagavad-gītā (3.21), yad yad ācarati śreṣṭhas tat tad evetaro janaḥ: "If the leading personalities behave in a certain manner, others follow them automatically." Who can be more of a leading personality than the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and whose behavior could be more exemplary? It is not that He needed to do all these things to acquire material gain, but all of these acts were performed just to teach us how to behave in this material world.
The Supreme Personality of Godhead is described herein as mahattama-agraṇīḥ. Within this material world, the mahattamas, or great personalities, are Lord Brahmā and Lord Śiva, but He is above them all. Nārāyaṇaḥ paro'vyaktāt: the Supreme Personality of Godhead is in a transcendental position, above everything created within this material world. His opulence, His riches, His beauty, His wisdom, His knowledge, His renunciation and His reputation are all jagat-pavitram, universally purifying. The more we discuss His opulences, the more the universe becomes purer and purer. In the material world, the opulences possessed by a material person are never fixed. Today one may be a very rich man, but tomorrow he may become poor; today one is very famous, but tomorrow he may be infamous. Materially obtained opulences are never fixed, but all six opulences perpetually exist in the Supreme Personality of Godhead, not only in the spiritual world, but also in this material world. Lord Kṛṣṇa's reputation is fixed, and His book of wisdom, Bhagavad-gītā, is still honored. Everything pertaining to the Supreme Personality of Godhead is eternally existing.