Srimad-Bhagavatam: Canto 4: “The Creation of the Fourth Order”
by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Chapter Twenty-four



atha bhagavata yuyam

priyah stha bhagavan yatha

na mad bhagavatanam ca

preyan anyo ’sti karhicit


atha—therefore; bhagavatah—devotees; yuyam—all of you; priyah—very dear to me; stha—you are; bhagavan—the Supreme Personality of Godhead; yatha—as; na—neither; mat—than me; bhagavatanam—of the devotees; ca—also; preyan—very dear; anyah—others; asti—there is; karhicit—at any time.


You are all devotees of the Lord, and as such I appreciate that you are as respectable as the Supreme Personality of Godhead Himself. I know in this way that the devotees also respect me and that I am dear to them. Thus no one can be as dear to the devotees as I am.


It is said, vaisnavanam yatha sambhuh: Lord Siva is the best of all devotees. Therefore all devotees of Lord Krsna are also devotees of Lord Siva. In Vrndavana there is Lord Siva’s temple called Gopisvara. The gopis used to worship not only Lord Siva but Katyayani, or Durga, as well, but their aim was to attain the favor of Lord Krsna. A devotee of Lord Krsna does not disrespect Lord Siva, but worships Lord Siva as the most exalted devotee of Lord Krsna. Consequently whenever a devotee worships Lord Siva, he prays to Lord Siva to achieve the favor of Krsna, and he does not request material profit. In Bhagavad-gita (7.20) it is said that generally people worship demigods for some material profit. Kamais tais tair hrta jnanah. Driven by material lust, they worship demigods, but a devotee never does so, for he is never driven by material lust. That is the difference between a devotee’s respect for Lord Siva and an asura’s respect for him. The asura worships Lord Siva, takes some benediction from him, misuses the benediction and ultimately is killed by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who awards him liberation.

Because Lord Siva is a great devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he loves all the devotees of the Supreme Lord. Lord Siva told the Pracetas that because they were devotees of the Lord, he loved them very much. Lord Siva was not kind and merciful only to the Pracetas; anyone who is a devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead is very dear to Lord Siva. Not only are the devotees dear to Lord Siva, but he respects them as much as he respects the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Similarly, devotees of the Supreme Lord also worship Lord Siva as the most dear devotee of Lord Krsna. They do not worship him as a separate Personality of Godhead. It is stated in the list of nama-aparadhas that it is an offense to think that the chanting of the name of Hari and the chanting of Hara, or Siva, are the same. The devotees must always know that Lord Visnu is the Supreme Personality of Godhead and that Lord Siva is His devotee. A devotee should be offered respect on the level of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and sometimes even more respect. Indeed, Lord Rama, the Personality of Godhead Himself, sometimes worshiped Lord Siva. If a devotee is worshiped by the Lord, why should a devotee not be worshiped by other devotees on the same level with the Lord? This is the conclusion. From this verse it appears that Lord Siva blesses the asuras simply for the sake of formality. Actually he loves one who is devoted to the Supreme Personality of Godhead.



idam viviktam japtavyam

pavitram mangalam param

nihsreyasa-karam capi

sruyatam tad vadami vah


idam—this; viviktam—very, particular; japtavyam—always to be chanted; pavitram—very pure; mangalam—auspicious; param—transcendental; nihsreyasa-karam—very beneficial; ca—also; api—certainly; sruyatam—please hear; tat—that; vadami—I am speaking; vah—unto you.


Now I shall chant one mantra which is not only transcendental, pure and auspicious, but is the best prayer for anyone who is aspiring to attain the ultimate goal of life. When I chant this mantra, please hear it carefully and attentively.


The word viviktam is very significant. No one should think of the prayers recited by Lord Siva as being sectarian; rather, they are very confidential, so much so that anyone desiring the ultimate prosperity or auspicious goal of life must take the instructions of Lord Siva and pray to and glorify the Supreme Personality of Godhead as Lord Siva himself did.



maitreya uvaca

ity anukrosa-hrdayo

bhagavan aha tan chivah

baddhanjalin raja-putran

narayana-paro vacah


maitreyah uvaca—the great saint Maitreya continued to speak; iti—thus; anukrosa-hrdayah—very kindhearted; bhagavan—the lord; aha—said; tan—unto the Pracetas; sivah—Lord Siva; baddha-anjalin—who were standing with folded hands; raja-putran—the sons of the King; narayana-parah—Lord Siva, the great devotee of Narayana; vacah—words.


The great sage Maitreya continued: Out of his causeless mercy, the exalted personality Lord Siva, a great devotee of Lord Narayana, continued to speak to the King’s sons, who were standing with folded hands.


Lord Siva voluntarily came to bless the sons of the King as well as do something beneficial for them. He personally chanted the mantra so that the mantra would be more powerful, and he advised that the mantra be chanted by the King’s sons (raja-putras). When a mantra is chanted by a great devotee, the mantra becomes more powerful. Although the Hare Krsna maha-mantra is powerful in itself, a disciple upon initiation receives the mantra from his spiritual master, for when the mantra is chanted by the spiritual master, it becomes more powerful. Lord Siva advised the sons of the King to hear him attentively, for inattentive hearing is offensive.



sri-rudra uvaca

jitam ta atma-vid-varya-

svastaye svastir astu me

bhavataradhasa raddham

sarvasma atmane namah


sri-rudrah uvaca—Lord Siva began to speak; jitam—all glories; te—unto You; atma-vit—self-realized; varya—the best; svastaye—unto the auspicious; svastih—auspiciousness; astu—let there be; me—of me; bhavata—by You; aradhasa—by the all-perfect; raddham—worshipable; sarvasmai—the Supreme Soul; atmane—unto the Supreme Soul; namah—obeisances.


Lord Siva addressed the Supreme Personality of Godhead with the following prayer: O Supreme Personality of Godhead, all glories unto You. You are the most exalted of all self-realized souls. Since You are always auspicious for the self-realized, I wish that You be auspicious for me. You are worshipable by virtue of the all-perfect instructions You give. You are the Supersoul; therefore I offer my obeisances unto You as the supreme living being.


As soon as a devotee is inspired by the Lord to offer the Lord a prayer, the devotee immediately glorifies the Lord in the beginning by saying, “All glories unto You, my Lord.” The Lord is glorified because He is considered to be the chief of all self-realized souls. As said in the Vedas (Katha Upanisad 2.2.13), nityo nityanam cetanas cetananam: the Supreme Being, the Personality of Godhead, is the chief living being amongst all living beings. There are different kinds of individual living beings—some of them are in this material world, and some are in the spiritual world. Those who are in the spiritual world are known to be completely self-realized because on the spiritual platform the living entity is not forgetful of his service to the Lord. Therefore in the spiritual world all those who are in the devotional service of the Lord are eternally fixed, for they understand the position of the Supreme Being, as well as their individual constitution. Thus amongst self-realized souls, the Lord is known as the perfectly self-realized soul. Nityo nityanam cetanas cetananam. When the individual soul is fixed in his knowledge of the Lord as the Supreme Being, he actually becomes established in an all-auspicious position. Lord Siva prays herein that his auspicious position continue eternally by virtue of the Lord’s mercy upon him.

The Supreme Lord is all-perfect, and the Lord instructs that one who worships Him also becomes perfect. As stated in Bhagavad-gita (15.15): mattah smrtir jnanam apohanam ca. The Lord is situated as the Supersoul in everyone’s heart, but He is so kind to His devotees that He gives them instructions by which they may continue to progress. When they receive instructions from the all-perfect, there is no chance of their being misled. This is also confirmed in Bhagavad-gita (10.10): dadami buddhi-yogam tam yena mam upayanti te. The Lord is always ready to give instructions to the pure devotee so that the devotee can advance further and further in devotional service. Since the Lord gives instructions as sarvatma, the Supersoul, Lord Siva offers Him respect with the words sarvatma atmane namah. The individual soul is called atma, and the Lord is also called atma as well as Paramatma. Being situated in everyone’s heart, the Lord is known as the supreme atma. Therefore all obeisances are offered unto Him. In this regard, one may refer to the prayers of Kunti in the First Canto of Srimad-Bhagavatam (1.8.20):

tatha paramahamsanam
muninam amalatmanam
katham pasyema hi striyah

The Lord is always ready to give instructions to the paramahamsas, or the topmost devotees of the Lord, who are completely liberated from all contaminations of the material world. The Lord always gives instructions to such exalted devotees to inform them how they can remain fixed in devotional service. Similarly, it is stated in the atmarama verse (Bhag. 1.7.10):

atmaramas ca munayo
nirgrantha apy urukrame
kurvanty ahaitukim bhaktim
ittham-bhuta-guno harih

The word atmarama refers to those who are not interested in the material world but are simply engaged in spiritual realization. Such self-realized persons are generally considered in two categories—impersonal and personal. However, impersonalists also become devotees when they are attracted by the personal transcendental qualities of the Lord. The conclusion is that Lord Siva wanted to remain a fixed devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vasudeva. As explained in the following verses, Lord Siva never desires to merge into the existence of the Supreme Lord like the impersonalists. Rather, he thinks that it would be good fortune for him to continue to be fixed in the understanding of the Lord as the Supreme Being. By this understanding, one realizes that all living entities—including Lord Siva, Lord Brahma and other demigods—are servants of the Supreme Lord.



namah pankaja-nabhaya


vasudevaya santaya

kuta-sthaya sva-rocise


namah—all obeisances unto You; pankaja-nabhaya—unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead, from whose navel the lotus flower emanates; bhuta-suksma—the sense objects; indriya—the senses; atmane—the origin; vasudevaya—unto Lord Vasudeva; santaya—always peaceful; kuta-sthaya—without being changed; sva-rocise—unto the supreme illumination.


My Lord, You are the origin of the creation by virtue of the lotus flower which sprouts from Your navel. You are the supreme controller of the senses and the sense objects, and You are also the all-pervading Vasudeva. You are most peaceful, and because of Your self-illuminated existence, You are not disturbed by the six kinds of transformations.


The Lord as Garbhodakasayi Visnu lies in the ocean of Garbha within this universe, and from His navel the lotus flower sprouts. Lord Brahma is generated from that lotus flower, and from Lord Brahma the creation of this material world begins. As such, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Garbhodakasayi Visnu, is the origin of the material senses and sense objects. Since Lord Siva considers himself to be one of the products of the material world, his senses are under the control of the supreme creator. The Supreme Lord is also known as Hrsikesa, master of the senses, which indicates that our senses and sense objects are formed by the Supreme Lord. As such, He can control our senses and out of His mercy engage them in the service of the master of the senses. In the conditioned state, the living entity struggles in this material world and engages his senses for material satisfaction. However, if the living entity is graced by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he can engage these very senses in the service of the Lord. Lord Siva desires not to be misled by the material senses but to engage always in the service of the Lord without being subject to contamination by materialistic influences. By the grace and help of Lord Vasudeva, who is all-pervading, one can engage his senses in devotional service without deviation, just as the Lord acts without deviation.

The words santaya kuta-sthaya sva-rocise are very significant. Although the Lord is within this material world, He is not disturbed by the waves of material existence. However, conditioned souls are agitated by six kinds of transformations; namely, they become agitated when they are hungry, when they are thirsty, when they are aggrieved, when they are illusioned, when they grow old and when they are on the deathbed. Although conditioned souls become very easily illusioned by these conditions in the material world, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, as the Supersoul, Vasudeva, is never agitated by these transformations. Therefore it is said here (kuta-sthaya) that He is always peaceful and devoid of agitation because of His prowess, which is described herein as sva-rocise, indicating that He is illuminated by His own transcendental position. In other words, the individual soul, although within the illumination of the Supreme, sometimes falls down from that illumination because of his tiny position, and when he falls down he enters into material, conditional life. The Lord, however, is not subject to such conditioning; therefore He is described as self-illuminated. Consequently any conditioned soul within this material universe can remain completely perfect when he is under the protection of Vasudeva, or when he is engaged in devotional service.



sankarsanaya suksmaya

durantayantakaya ca

namo visva-prabodhaya



sankarsanaya—unto the master of integration; suksmaya—unto the subtle unmanifested material ingredients; durantaya—unto the unsurpassable; antakaya—unto the master of disintegration; ca—also; namah—obeisances; visva-prabodhaya—unto the master of the development of the universe; pradyumnaya—unto Lord Pradyumna; antah-atmane—unto the Supersoul in everyone’s heart.


My dear Lord, You are the origin of the subtle material ingredients, the master of all integration as well as the master of all disintegration, the predominating Deity named Sankarsana, and the master of all intelligence, known as the predominating Deity Pradyumna. Therefore, I offer my respectful obeisances unto You.


The whole universe is maintained by the integrating power of the Supreme Lord, who is known in that capacity by the name Sankarsana. The material scientists may have discovered the law of gravity, which maintains the integration of objects within the material energy, yet the master of all integration can create devastation by the disintegrating blazing fire emanating from His mouth. A description of this can be found in the Eleventh Chapter of Bhagavad-gita, wherein the universal form of the Lord is described. The master of integration is also the destroyer of this world by virtue of His disintegrating energy. Sankarsana is the master of integration and disintegration, whereas Pradyumna, another feature of Lord Vasudeva, is responsible for universal growth and maintenance. The word suksmaya is significant because within this gross material body there are subtle material bodies—namely mind, intelligence and ego. The Lord in His different features (Vasudeva, Aniruddha, Pradyumna and Sankarsana) maintains both the gross and subtle material elements of this world. As mentioned in Bhagavad-gita, the gross material elements are earth, water, fire, air and ether, and the subtle material elements are mind, intelligence and ego. All of them are controlled by the Supreme Personality of Godhead as Vasudeva, Sankarsana, Pradyumna and Aniruddha, and this will be further explained in the following verse.



namo namo ’niruddhaya


namah paramahamsaya

purnaya nibhrtatmane


namah—all my obeisances unto You; namah—obeisances again; aniruddhaya—unto Lord Aniruddha; hrsikesa—the master of the senses; indriya-atmane—the director of the senses; namah—all obeisances unto You; parama-hamsaya—unto the supreme perfect; purnaya—unto the supreme complete; nibhrta-atmane—who is situated apart from this material creation.


My Lord, as the supreme directing Deity known as Aniruddha, You are the master of the senses and the mind. I therefore offer my obeisances unto You again and again. You are known as Ananta as well as Sankarsana because of Your ability to destroy the whole creation by the blazing fire from Your mouth.


Hrsikesendriyatmane. The mind is the director of the senses, and Lord Aniruddha is the director of the mind. In order to execute devotional service, one has to fix his mind on the lotus feet of Krsna; therefore Lord Siva prays to the controller of the mind, Lord Aniruddha, to be pleased to help him engage his mind on the lotus feet of the Lord. It is stated in Bhagavad-gita (9.34): man-mana bhava mad-bhakto mad-yaji mam. namaskuru. The mind has to be engaged in meditation on the lotus feet of the Lord in order to execute devotional service. It is also stated in Bhagavad-gita (15.15), mattah smrtir jnanam apohanam ca: from the Lord come remembrance, knowledge and forgetfulness. Thus if Lord Aniruddha is pleased, He can help the mind engage in the service of the Lord. It is also indicated in this verse that Lord Aniruddha is the sun-god by virtue of His expansions. Since the predominating deity of the sun is an expansion of Lord Aniruddha, Lord Siva also prays to the sun-god in this verse.

Lord Krsna, by His quadruple expansion (Vasudeva, Sankarsana, Pradyumna and Aniruddha), is the Lord of psychic action—namely thinking, feeling, willing and acting. Lord Siva prays to Lord Aniruddha as the sun-god, who is the controlling deity of the external material elements which constitute the construction of the material body. According to Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura, the word paramahamsa is also another name for the sun-god. The sun-god is addressed herein as nibhrtatmane, which indicates that he always maintains the various planets by manipulating the rainfall. The sun-god evaporates water from the seas and oceans and then forms the water into clouds and distributes it over land. When there is sufficient rainfall grains are produced, and these grains maintain living entities in each and every planet. The sun-god is also addressed herein as purna, or complete, because the rays emanating from the sun have no end. For millions and millions of years since the creation of this universe, the sun-god has been supplying heat and light without diminution. The word paramahamsa is applied to persons who are completely cleansed. When there is sufficient sunshine, the mind remains clear and transparent—in other words, the sun-god helps the mind of the living entity to become situated on the platform of paramahamsa. Thus Lord Siva prays to Aniruddha to be kind upon him so that his mind will always be in the perfect state of cleanliness and will be engaged in the devotional service of the Lord. Just as fire sterilizes all unclean things, the sun-god also keeps everything sterilized, especially dirty things within the mind, thus enabling one to attain elevation to the platform of spiritual understanding.




nityam suci-sade namah

namo hiranya-viryaya

catur-hotraya tantave


svarga—the heavenly planets; apavarga—the path of liberation; dvaraya—unto the door of; nityam—eternally; suci-sade—unto the most purified; namah—my obeisances unto You; namah—my obeisances; hiranya—gold; viryaya—semen; catuh-hotraya—the Vedic sacrifices of the name; tantave—unto one who expands.


My Lord, O Aniruddha, You are the authority by which the doors of the higher planetary systems and liberation are opened. You are always within the pure heart of the living entity. Therefore I offer my obeisances unto You. You are the possessor of semen which is like gold, and thus, in the form of fire, You help the Vedic sacrifices, beginning with catur-hotra. Therefore I offer my obeisances unto You.


The word svarga indicates a position in the higher or heavenly planetary systems, and the word apavarga means “liberation.” Those who are attached to the karma-kandiya activities described in the Vedas are actually entangled in the three modes of material nature. The Bhagavad-gita therefore says that one should be above the dominion of fruitive activities. There are different kinds of liberation, or mukti. The best mukti is engagement in the devotional service of the Supreme Lord. Not only does Lord Aniruddha help fruitive actors by elevating them to the higher planetary systems, but He also helps the devotee engage in devotional service by dint of His inexhaustible energy. Just as heat is the source of material energy, the inspiration of Lord Aniruddha is the energy by which one can engage in executing devotional service.



nama urja ise trayyah

pataye yajna-retase

trpti-daya ca jivanam

namah sarva-rasatmane


namah—I offer all obeisances unto You; urje—unto the provider of the Pitrloka; ise—the provider of all the demigods; trayyah—of the three Vedas; pataye—unto the master; yajna—sacrifices; retase—unto the predominating deity of the moon planet; trpti-daya—unto Him who gives satisfaction to everyone; ca—also; jivanam—of the living entities; namah—I offer my obeisances; sarva-rasa-atmane—unto the all-pervading Supersoul.


My Lord, You are the provider of the Pitrlokas as well as all the demigods. You are the predominating deity of the moon and the master of all three Vedas. I offer my respectful obeisances unto You because You are the original source of satisfaction for all living entities.


When the living entity is born with this material world—especially as a human being—he has several obligations unto the demigods, unto the saintly persons and unto living entities in general. As enjoined in the sastras: devarsi-bhutapta-nrnam pitrnam11.5.41. Thus one has an obligation to one’s forefathers, the previous hierarchy. Lord Siva prays to Lord Aniruddha to give him strength so he can become free from all obligation to the Pitas, demigods, general living entities and saintly persons and completely engage himself in the devotional service of the Lord. As stated:

devarsi-bhutapta-nrnam pitrnam
na kinkaro nayam rni ca rajan
sarvatmana yah saranam saranyam
gato mukundam parihrtya kartam

(Bhag. 11.5.41)

One becomes free from all obligations to the demigods, saintly persons, pitas, ancient forefathers, etc., if one is completely engaged in the devotional service of the Lord. Lord Siva therefore prays to Lord Aniruddha to give him strength so that he can be free from such obligations and entirely engage in the Lord’s service.

Soma, or the predominating deity of the moon, is responsible for the living entity’s ability to relish the taste of food through the tongue. Lord Siva prays to Lord Aniruddha to give him strength so that he will not taste anything but the prasada of the Lord. Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura has sung a verse indicating that the tongue is the most formidable enemy among all the senses. If one can control the tongue, he can easily control the other senses. The tongue can be controlled only by eating prasada offered to the Deity. Lord Siva’s prayer to Lord Aniruddha is meant for this purpose (trpti-daya); he prays to Lord Aniruddha to help him be satisfied by eating only prasada offered to the Lord.




visesaya sthaviyase

namas trailokya-palaya

saha ojo-balaya ca


sarva—all; sattva—existence; atma—soul; dehaya—unto the body; visesaya—diversity; sthaviyase—unto the material world; namah—offering obeisances; trai-lokya—three planetary systems; palaya—maintainer; saha—along with; ojah—prowess; balaya—unto the strength; ca—also.


My dear Lord, You are the gigantic universal form which contains all the individual bodies of the living entities. You are the maintainer of the three worlds, and as such You maintain the mind, senses, body, and air of life within them. I therefore offer my respectful obeisances unto You.


As the individual body of the living entity is composed of millions of cells, germs and microbes, the universal body of the Supreme Lord similarly contains all the individual bodies of the living entities. Lord Siva is offering his obeisances to the universal body, which includes all other bodies, so that everyone’s body may fully engage in devotional service. Since this individual body is composed of senses, all the senses should be engaged in devotional service. For instance, the smelling instrument, the nose, can engage in smelling the flowers offered to the lotus feet of the Lord, the hands can engage in cleansing the temple of the Lord, etc. Indeed, being the life air of every living entity, the Lord is the maintainer of the three worlds. Consequently He can induce every living entity to engage in his real life’s duty with full bodily and mental strength. Thus every living entity should serve the Supreme Personality of Godhead by his prana (life), artha (wealth), intelligence and words. As stated in the Srimad-Bhagavatam (10.22.35):

etavaj janma-saphalyam
dehinam iha dehisu
pranair arthair dhiya vaca
sreya-acaranam sada

Even though one may desire to engage in the service of the Lord, without sanction one cannot do so. Lord Siva is offering his prayers in so many different ways in order to show living entities how to engage in the devotional service of the Lord.



artha-lingaya nabhase

namo ’ntar-bahir-atmane

namah punyaya lokaya

amusmai bhuri-varcase


artha—meaning; lingaya—revealing; nabhase—unto the sky; namah—offering obeisances; antah—within; bahih—and without; atmane—unto the self; namah—offering obeisances; punyaya—pious activities; lokaya—for creation; amusmai—beyond death; bhuri-varcase—the supreme effulgence.


My dear Lord, by expanding Your transcendental vibrations, You reveal the actual meaning of everything. You are the all-pervading sky within and without, and You are the ultimate goal of pious activities executed both within this material world and beyond it. I therefore offer my respectful obeisances again and again unto You.


Vedic evidence is called sabda-brahma. There are many things which are beyond the perception of our imperfect senses, yet the authoritative evidence of sound vibration is perfect. The Vedas are known as sabda-brahma because evidence taken from the Vedas constitutes the ultimate understanding. This is because sabda-brahma, or the Vedas, represents the Supreme Personality of Godhead. However, the real essence of sabda-brahma is the chanting of the Hare Krsna mantra. By vibrating this transcendental sound, the meaning of everything, both material and spiritual, is revealed. This Hare Krsna is nondifferent from the Personality of Godhead. The meaning of everything is received through the air through sound vibration. The vibration may be material or spiritual, but without sound vibration no one can understand the meaning of anything. In the Vedas it is said, antar bahis ca tat sarvam vyaya narayanah sthitah: “Narayana is all-pervading, and He exists both within and without.” This is also confirmed in Bhagavad-gita (13.34):

yatha prakasayaty ekah
krtsnam lokam imam ravih
ksetram ksetri tatha krtsnam
prakasayati bharata

“O son of Bharata, as the sun alone illuminates all this universe, so do the living entity and the Supersoul illuminate the entire body by consciousness.”

In other words, the consciousness of both the soul and Supersoul is all-pervading; the limited consciousness of the living entity is pervading the entire material body, and the supreme consciousness of the Lord is pervading the entire universe. Because the soul is present within the body, consciousness pervades the entire body; similarly, because the supreme soul, or Krsna, is present within this universe, everything is working in order. Mayadhyaksena prakrtih suyate sa-caracaram: “This material nature is working under My direction, O son of Kunti, and it is producing all moving and unmoving beings.” (Bg. 9.10)

Lord Siva is therefore praying to the Personality of Godhead to be kind to us so that simply by chanting the Hare Krsna mantra we can understand everything in both the material and spiritual worlds. The word amusmai is significant in this regard because it indicates the best target one can aim for after attaining the higher planetary systems. Those who are engaged in fruitive activities (karmis) attain the higher planetary systems as a result of their past activities, and the jnanis, who seek unification or a monistic merging with the effulgence of the Supreme Lord, also attain their desired end, but in the ultimate issue, the devotees, who desire to personally associate with the Lord, are promoted to the Vaikunthalokas or Goloka Vrndavana. The Lord is described in Bhagavad-gita (10.12) as pavitram paramam, the supreme pure. This is also confirmed in this verse. Sukadeva Gosvami has stated that the cowherd boys who played with Lord Krsna were not ordinary living entities. Only after accumulating many pious activities in various births does one get the opportunity to personally associate with the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Since only the pure can reach Him, He is the supreme pure.



pravrttaya nivrttaya

pitr-devaya karmane

namo ’dharma-vipakaya

mrtyave duhkha-daya ca


pravrttaya—inclination; nivrttaya—disinclination; pitr-devaya—unto the master of Pitrloka; karmane—unto the resultant action of fruitive activities; namah—offering respects; adharma—irreligious; vipakaya—unto the result; mrtyave—unto death; duhkha-daya—the cause of all kinds of miserable conditions; ca—also.


My dear Lord, You are the viewer of the results of pious activities. You are inclination, disinclination and their resultant activities. You are the cause of the miserable conditions of life caused by irreligion, and therefore You are death. I offer You my respectful obeisances.


The Supreme Personality of Godhead is situated in everyone’s heart, and from Him issue a living entity’s inclinations and disinclinations. This is confirmed in Bhagavad-gita (15.15):

sarvasya caham hrdi sannivisto
mattah smrtir jnanam apohanam ca

“I am seated in everyone’s heart, and from Me come remembrance, knowledge and forgetfulness.”

The Supreme Personality of Godhead causes the asuras to forget Him and the devotees to remember Him. One’s disinclinations are due to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. According to Bhagavad-gita (16.7), pravrttim ca nivrttim ca jana na vidur asurah: the asuras do not know which way one should be inclined to act and which way one should not be inclined to act. Although the asuras oppose devotional service, it is to be understood that they are inclined that way due to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Because the asuras do not like to engage in the Lord’s devotional service, the Lord within gives them the intelligence to forget. Ordinary karmis desire promotion to Pitrloka, as confirmed in Bhagavad-gita (9.25). Yanti deva-vrata devan pitrn yanti pitr-vratah: “Those who worship the demigods will take birth among the demigods, and those who worship ancestors go to the ancestors.”

In this verse the word duhkha-daya is also very significant, for those who are nondevotees are perpetually put into the cycle of birth and death. This is a very miserable condition. Because one’s position in life is attained according to one’s activities, the asuras, or nondevotees, are put into such miserable conditions.

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