Srimad-Bhagavatam: Canto 5: “The Creative Impetus”
by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Chapter Twenty-six

A Description of the Hellish Planets


The Twenty-sixth Chapter describes how a sinful man goes to different hells, where he is punished in various ways by the assistants of Yamaraja. As stated in the Bhagavad-gita (3.27):

prakrteh kriyamanani
gunaih karmani sarvasah
kartaham iti manyate

“The bewildered spirit soul, under the influence of the three modes of material nature, thinks himself to be the doer of activities, which are in actuality carried out by nature.” The foolish person thinks he is independent of any law. He thinks there is no God or regulative principle and that he can do whatever he likes. Thus he engages in different sinful activities, and as a result, he is put into different hellish conditions life after life, to be punished by the laws of nature. The basic principle of his suffering is that he foolishly thinks himself independent, although he is strictly under the control of the laws of material nature. These laws act due to the influence of the three modes of nature, and therefore each human being also works under three different types of influence. According to how he acts, he suffers different reactions in his next life or in this life. Religious persons act differently from atheists, and therefore they suffer different reactions.

Sukadeva Gosvami describes the following twenty-eight hells: Tamisra, Andhatamisra, Raurava, Maharaurava, Kumbhipaka. Kalasutra, Asi-patravana, Sukaramukha, Andhakupa, Krmibhojana. Sandamsa, Taptasurmi, Vajrakantaka-salmali, Vaitarani, Puyoda, Pranarodha, Visasana, Lalabhaksa, Sarameyadana, Avici, Ayahpana. Ksarakardama, Raksogana-bhojana, Sulaprota, Dandasuka. Avata-nirodhana, Paryavartana and Sucimukha.

A person who steals another’s money, wife or possessions is put into the hell known as Tamisra. A man who tricks someone and enjoys his wife is put into the extremely hellish condition known as Andhatamisra. A foolish person absorbed in the bodily concept of life, who on the basis of this principle maintains himself or his wife and children by committing violence against other living entities, is put into the hell known as Raurava. There the animals he killed take birth as creatures called rurus and cause great suffering for him. Those who kill different animals and birds and then cook them are put by the agents of Yamaraja into the hell known as Kumbhipaka, where they are boiled in oil. A person who kills a brahmana is put into the hell known as Kalasutra, where the land, perfectly level and made of copper, is as hot as an oven. The killer of a brahmana burns in that land for many years. One who does not follow scriptural injunctions but who does everything whimsically or follows some rascal is put into the hell known as Asi-patravana. A government official who poorly administers justice, or who punishes an innocent man, is taken by the assistants of Yamaraja to the hell known as Sukaramukha, where he is mercilessly beaten.

God has given advanced consciousness to the human being. Therefore he can feel the suffering and happiness of other living beings. The human being bereft of his conscience, however, is prone to cause suffering for other living beings. The assistants of Yamaraja put such a person into the hell known as Andhakupa, where he receives proper punishment from his victims. Any person who does not receive or feed a guest properly but who personally enjoys eating is put into the hell known as Krmibhojana. There an unlimited number of worms and insects continuously bite him.

A thief is put into the hell known as Sandamsa. A person who has sexual relations with a woman who is not to be enjoyed is put into the hell known as Taptasurmi. A person who enjoys sexual relations with animals is put into the hell known as Vajrakantaka-salmali. A person born into an aristocratic or highly placed family but who does not act accordingly is put into the hellish trench of blood, pus and urine called the Vaitarani River. One who lives like an animal is put into the hell called Puyoda. A person who mercilessly kills animals in the forest without sanction is put into the hell called Pranarodha. A person who kills animals in the name of religious sacrifice is put into the hell named Visasana. A man who forces his wife to drink his semen is put into the hell called Lalabhaksa. One who sets a fire or administers poison to kill someone is put into the hell known as Sarameyadana. A man who earns his livelihood by bearing false witness is put into the hell known as Avici.

A person addicted to drinking wine is put into the hell named Ayahpana. One who violates etiquette by not showing proper respect to superiors is put into the hell known as Ksarakardama. A person who sacrifices human beings to Bhairava is put into the hell called Raksogana-bhojana. A person who kills pet animals is put into the hell called Sulaprota. A person who gives trouble to others is put into the hell known as Dandasuka. One who imprisons a living entity within a cave is put into the hell known as Avata-nirodhana. A person who shows unwarranted wrath toward a guest in his house is put into the hell called Paryavartana. A person maddened by possessing riches and thus deeply absorbed in thinking of how to collect money is put into the hell known as Sucimukha.

After describing the hellish planets, Sukadeva Gosvami describes how pious persons are elevated to the highest planetary system, where the demigods live, and how they then come back again to this earth when the results of their pious activities are finished. Finally he describes the universal form of the Lord and glorifies the Lord’s activities.




maharsa etad vaicitryam lokasya katham iti.


raja uvaca—the King said; maharse—O great saint (Sukadeva Gosvami); etat—this; vaicitryam—variegatedness; lokasya—of the living entities; katham—how; iti—thus.


King Pariksit inquired from Sukadeva Gosvami: My dear sir, why are the living entities put into different material situations? Kindly explain this to me.


Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura explains that the different hellish planets within this universe are held slightly above the Garbhodaka Ocean and remain situated there. This chapter describes how all sinful persons go to these hellish planets and how they are punished there by the assistants of Yamaraja. Different individuals with different bodily features enjoy or suffer various reactions according to their past deeds.



rsir uvaca

tri-gunatvat kartuh sraddhaya karma-gatayah prthag-vidhah sarva eva sarvasya taratamyena bhavanti.


rsih uvaca—the great saint (Sukadeva Gosvami) said; tri-gunatvat—because of the three modes of material nature; kartuh—of the worker; sraddhaya—because of the attitudes; karma-gatayah—destinations resulting from activity; prthak—different; vidhah—varieties; sarvah—all; eva—thus; sarvasya—of all of them; taratamyena—in different degrees; bhavanti—become possible.


The great sage Sukadeva Gosvami said: My dear King, in this material world there are three kinds of activities—those in the mode of goodness, the mode of passion and the mode of ignorance. Because all people are influenced by the three modes of material nature, the results of their activities are also divided into three. One who acts in the mode of goodness is religious and happy, one who acts in passion achieves mixed misery and happiness, and one who acts under the influence of ignorance is always unhappy and lives like an animal. Because of the varying degrees to which the living entities are influenced by the different modes of nature, their destinations are also of different varieties.



athedanim pratisiddha-laksanasyadharmasya tathaiva kartuh sraddhaya vaisadrsyat karma-phalam visadrsam bhavati ya hy anady-avidyaya krta-kamanam tat-parinama-laksanah srtayah sahasrasah pravrttas tasam pracuryenanuvarnayisyamah.


atha—thus; idanim—now; pratisiddha—by what is forbidden; laksanasya—symptomized; adharmasya—of impious activities; tatha—so also; eva—certainly; kartuh—of the performer; sraddhayah—of faith; vaisadrsyat—by the difference; karma-phalam—the reaction of fruitive activities; visadrsam—different; bhavati—is; ya—which; hi—indeed; anadi—from time immemorial; avidyaya—by ignorance; krta—performed; kamanam—of persons possessing many lusty desires; tat-parinama-laksanah—the symptoms of the results of such impious desires; srtayah—hellish conditions of life; sahasrasah—by thousands upon thousands; pravrttah—resulted; tasam—them; pracuryena—very widely; anuvarnayisyamah—I shall explain.


Just as by executing various pious activities one achieves different positions in heavenly life, by acting impiously one achieves different positions in hellish life. Those who are activated by the material mode of ignorance engage in impious activities, and according to the extent of their ignorance, they are placed in different grades of hellish life. If one acts in the mode of ignorance because of madness, his resulting misery is the least severe. One who acts impiously but knows the distinction between pious and impious activities is placed in a hell of intermediate severity. And for one who acts impiously and ignorantly because of atheism, the resultant hellish life is the worst. Because of ignorance, every living entity has been carried by various desires into thousands of different hellish planets since time immemorial. I shall try to describe them as far as possible.




naraka nama bhagavan kim desa-visesa athava bahis tri-lokya ahosvid antarala iti.


raja uvaca—the King said; narakah—the hellish regions; nama—named; bhagavan—O my Lord; kim—whether; desa-visesah—a particular country; athava—or; bahih—outside; tri-lokyah—the three worlds (the universe); ahosvit—or; antarale—in the intermediate spaces within the universe; iti—thus.


King Pariksit inquired from Sukadeva Gosvami: My dear lord, are the hellish regions outside the universe, within the covering of the universe, or in different places on this planet?



rsir uvaca

antarala eva tri-jagatyas tu disi daksinasyam adhastad bhumer uparistac ca jalad yasyam agnisvattadayah pitr-gana disi svanam gotranam paramena samadhina satya evasisa asasana nivasanti.


rsih uvaca—the great sage replied; antarale—in the intermediate space; eva—certainly; tri-jagatyah—of the three worlds; tu—but; disi—in the direction; daksinasyam—southern; adhastat—beneath; bhumeh—on the earth; uparistat—a little above; ca—and; jalat—the Garbhodaka Ocean; yasyam—in which; agnisvatta-adayah—headed by Agnisvatta; pitr-ganah—the persons known as pitas; disi—direction; svanam—their own; gotranam—of the families; paramena—with great; samadhina—absorption in thoughts of the Lord; satyah—in truth; eva—certainly; asisah—blessings; asasanah—desiring; nivasanti—they live.


The great sage Sukadeva Gosvami answered: All the hellish planets are situated in the intermediate space between the three worlds and the Garbhodaka Ocean. They lie on the southern side of the universe, beneath Bhu-mandala, and slightly above the water of the Garbhodaka Ocean. Pitrloka is also located in this region between the Garbhodaka Ocean and the lower planetary systems. All the residents of Pitrloka, headed by Agnisvatta, meditate in great samadhi on the Supreme Personality of Godhead and always wish their families well.


As previously explained, below our planetary system are seven lower planetary systems, the lowest of which is called Patalaloka. Beneath Patalaloka are other planets, known as Narakaloka, or the hellish planets. At the bottom of the universe lies the Garbhodaka Ocean. Therefore the hellish planets lie between Patalaloka and the Garbhodaka Ocean.



yatra ha vava bhagavan pitr-rajo vaivasvatah sva-visayam prapitesu sva-purusair jantusu samparetesu yatha-karmavadyam dosam evanullanghita-bhagavac-chasanah sagano damam dharayati.


yatra—where; ha vava—indeed; bhagavan—the most powerful; pitr-rajah—Yamaraja, the king of the pitas; vaivasvatah—the son of the sun-god; sva-visayam—his own kingdom; prapitesu—when caused to reach; sva-purusaih—by his own messengers; jantusu—the human beings; samparetesu—dead; yatha-karma-avadyam—according to how much they have violated the rules and regulations of conditional life; dosam—the fault; eva—certainly; anullanghita-bhagavat-sasanah—who never oversteps the Supreme Personality of Godhead’s order; saganah—along with his followers; damam—punishment; dharayati—executes.


The King of the pitas is Yamaraja, the very powerful son of the sun-god. He resides in Pitrloka with his personal assistants and, while abiding by the rules and regulations set down by the Supreme Lord, has his agents, the Yamadutas, bring all the sinful men to him immediately upon their death. After bringing them within his jurisdiction, he properly judges them according to their specific sinful activities and sends them to one of the many hellish planets for suitable punishments.


Yamaraja is not a fictitious or mythological character; he has his own abode, Pitrloka, of which he is king. Agnostics may not believe in hell, but Sukadeva Gosvami affirms the existence of the Naraka planets, which lie between the Garbhodaka Ocean and Patalaloka. Yamaraja is appointed by the Supreme Personality of Godhead to see that the human beings do not violate His rules and regulations. As confirmed in Bhagavad-gita (4.17):

karmano hy api boddhavyam
boddhavyam ca vikarmanah
akarmanas ca boddhavyam
gahana karmano gatih

“The intricacies of action are very hard to understand. Therefore one should know properly what action is, what forbidden action is, and what inaction is. “One should understand the nature of karma, vikarma and akarma, and one must act accordingly. This is the law of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The conditioned souls, who have come to this material world for sense gratification, are allowed to enjoy their senses under certain regulative principles. If they violate these regulations, they are judged and punished by Yamaraja. He brings them to the hellish planets and properly chastises them to bring them back to Krsna consciousness. By the influence of maya, however, the conditioned souls remain infatuated with the mode of ignorance. Thus in spite of repeated punishment by Yamaraja, they do not come to their senses, but continue to live within the material condition, committing sinful activities again and again.



tatra haike narakan eka-vimsatim ganayanti atha tams te rajan nama-rupa-laksanato ’nukramisyamas tamisro ’ndhatamisro rauravo maharauravah kumbhipakah kalasutram asipatravanam sukaramukham andhakupah krmibhojanah sandamsas taptasurmir vajrakantaka-salmali vaitarani puyodah pranarodho visasanam lalabhaksah sarameyadanam avicir ayahpanam iti; kinca ksarakardamo raksogana-bhojanah sulaproto dandasuko ’vata-nirodhanah paryavartanah sucimukham ity asta-vimsatir naraka vividha-yatana-bhumayah.


tatra—there; ha—certainly; eke—some; narakan—the hellish planets; eka-vimsatim—twenty-one; ganayanti—count; atha—therefore; tan—them; te—unto you; rajan—O King; nama-rupa-laksanatah—according to their names, forms and symptoms; anukramisyamah—we shall outline one after another; tamisrah—Tamisra; andha-tamisrah—Andhatamisra; rauravah—Raurava; maha-rauravah—Maharaurava; kumbhi-pakah—Kumbhipaka; kala-sutram—Kalasutra; asi-patravanam—Asi-patravana; sukara-mukham—Sukaramukha; andha-kupah—Andhakupa; krmi-bhojanah—Krmibhojana; sandamsah—Sandamsa; tapta-surmih—Taptasurmi; vajra-kantaka-salmali—Vajrakantaka-salmali; vaitarani—Vaitarani; puyodah—Puyoda; prana-rodhah—Pranarodha; visasanam—Visasana; lala-bhaksah—Lalabhaksa; sarameyadanam—Sarameyadana; avicih—Avici; ayah-panam—Ayahpana; iti—thus; kinca—some more; ksara-kardamah—Ksarakardama; raksah-gana-bhojanah—Raksogana-bhojana; sula-protah—Sulaprota; danda-sukah—Dandasuka; avata-nirodhanah—Avata-nirodhana; paryavartanah—Paryavartana; suci-mukham—Sucimukha; iti—in this way; asta-vimsatih—twenty-eight; narakah—hellish planets; vividha—various; yatana-bhumayah—lands of suffering in hellish conditions.


Some authorities say that there is a total of twenty-one hellish planets, and some say twenty-eight. My dear King, I shall outline all of them according to their names, forms and symptoms. The names of the different hells are as follows: Tamisra, Andhatamisra, Raurava, Maharaurava, Kumbhipaka, Kalasutra, Asi-patravana, Sukaramukha, Andhakupa, Krmibhojana, Sandamsa, Taptasurmi, Vajrakantaka-salmali, Vaitarani, Puyoda, Pranarodha, Visasana, Lalabhaksa, Sarameyadana, Avici, Ayahpana, Ksarakardama, Raksogana-bhojana, Sulaprota, Dandasuka, Avata-nirodhana, Paryavartana and Sucimukha. All these planets are meant for punishing the living entities.



tatra yas tu para-vittapatya-kalatrany apaharati sa hi kala-pasa-baddho yama-purusair ati-bhayanakais tamisre narake balan nipatyate anasananudapana-danda-tadana-santarjanadibhir yatanabhir yatyamano jantur yatra kasmalam asadita ekadaiva murccham upayati tamisra-praye.


tatra—in those hellish planets; yah—a person who; tu—but; para-vitta-apatya-kalatrani—the money, wife and children of another; apaharati—takes away; sah—that person; hi—certainly; kala-pasa-baddhah—being bound by the ropes of time or Yamaraja; yama-purusaih—by the assistants of Yamaraja; ati-bhayanakaih—who are very fearful; tamisre narake—into the hell known as Tamisra; balat—by force; nipatyate—is thrown; anasana—starvation; anudapana—without water; danda-tadana—beaten with rods; santarjana-adibhih—by scolding and so on; yatanabhih—by severe punishments; yatyamanah—being punished; jantuh—the living entity; yatra—where; kasmalam—misery; asaditah—obtained; ekada—sometimes; eva—certainly; murccham—fainting; upayati—obtains; tamisra-praye—in that condition, which is almost entirely dark.


My dear King, a person who appropriates another’s legitimate wife, children or money is arrested at the time of death by the fierce Yamadutas, who bind him with the rope of time and forcibly throw him into the hellish planet known as Tamisra. On this very dark planet, the sinful man is chastised by the Yamadutas, who beat and rebuke him. He is starved, and he is given no water to drink. Thus the wrathful assistants of Yamaraja cause him severe suffering, and sometimes he faints from their chastisement.



evam evandhatamisre yas tu vancayitva purusam daradin upayunkte yatra sariri nipatyamano yatana-stho vedanaya nasta-matir nasta-drstis ca bhavati yatha vanaspatir vrscyamana-mulas tasmad andhatamisram tam upadisanti.


evam—in this way; eva—certainly; andhatamisre—in the hellish planet known as Andhatamisra; yah—the person who; tu—but; vancayitva—cheating; purusam—another person; dara-adin—the wife and children; upayunkte—enjoys; yatra—where; sariri—the embodied person; nipatyamanah—being forcibly thrown; yatana-sthah—always situated in extremely miserable conditions; vedanaya—by such suffering; nasta—lost; matih—whose consciousness; nasta—lost; drstih—whose sight; ca—also; bhavati—becomes; yatha—as much as; vanaspatih—the trees; vrscyamana—being cut; mulah—whose root; tasmat—because of this; andhatamisram—Andhatamisra; tam—that; upadisanti—they call.


The destination of a person who slyly cheats another man and enjoys his wife and children is the hell known as Andhatamisra. There his condition is exactly like that of a tree being chopped at its roots. Even before reaching Andhatamisra, the sinful living being is subjected to various extreme miseries. These afflictions are so severe that he loses his intelligence and sight. It is for this reason that learned sages call this hell Andhatamisra.



yas tv iha va etad aham iti mamedam iti bhuta-drohena kevalam sva-kutumbam evanudinam prapusnati sa tad iha vihaya svayam eva tad-asubhena raurave nipatati.


yah—one who; tu—but; iha—in this life; va—or; etat—this body; aham—I; iti—thus; mama—mine; idam—this; iti—thus; bhuta-drohena—by envy of other living entities; kevalam—alone; sva-kutumbam—his family members; eva—only; anudinam—day to day; prapusnati—supports; sah—such a person; tat—that; iha—here; vihaya—giving up; svayam—personally; eva—certainly; tat—of that; asubhena—by the sin; raurave—in Raurava; nipatati—he falls down.


A person who accepts his body as his self works very hard day and night for money to maintain his own body and the bodies of his wife and children. While working to maintain himself and his family, he may commit violence against other living entities. Such a person is forced to give up his body and his family at the time of death, when he suffers the reaction for his envy of other creatures by being thrown into the hell called Raurava.


In Srimad-Bhagavatam it is said:

yasyatma-buddhih kunape tri-dhatuke
sva-dhih kalatradisu bhauma-ijya-dhih
yat-tirtha-buddhih salile na karhicij
janesv abhijnesu sa eva go-kharah

“One who accepts this bodily bag of three elements [bile, mucus and air] as his self, who has an affinity for an intimate relationship with his wife and children, who considers his land worshipable, who takes bath in the waters of the holy places of pilgrimage but never takes advantage of those persons who are in actual knowledge—he is no better than an ass or a cow.” (Bhag. 10.84.13) There are two classes of men absorbed in the material concept of life. Out of ignorance, a man in the first class thinks his body to be his self, and therefore he is certainly like an animal (sa eva go-kharah). The person in the second class, however, not only thinks his material body to be his self, but also commits all kinds of sinful activities to maintain his body. He cheats everyone to acquire money for his family and his self, and he becomes envious of others without reason. Such a person is thrown into the hell known as Raurava. If one simply considers his body to be his self, as do the animals, he is not very sinful. However, if one needlessly commits sins to maintain his body, he is put into the hell known as Raurava. This is the opinion of Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura. Although animals are certainly in the bodily concept of life, they do not commit any sins to maintain their bodies, mates or offspring. Therefore animals do not go to hell. However, when a human being acts enviously and cheats others to maintain his body, he is put into a hellish condition.



ye tv iha yathaivamuna vihimsita jantavah paratra yama-yatanam upagatam ta eva ruravo bhutva tatha tam eva vihimsanti tasmad rauravam ity ahu rurur iti sarpad ati-krura-sattvasyapadesah.


ye—those who; tu—but; iha—in this life; yatha—as much as; eva—certainly; amuna—by him; vihimsitah—who were hurt; jantavah—the living entities; paratra—in the next life; yama-yatanam upagatam—being subjected to miserable conditions by Yamaraja; te—those living entities; eva—indeed; ruravahrurus (a kind of envious animal); bhutva—becoming; tatha—that much; tam—him; eva—certainly; vihimsanti—they hurt; tasmat—because of this; rauravam—Raurava; iti—thus; ahuh—learned scholars say; ruruh—the animal known as ruru; iti—thus; sarpat—than the snake; ati-krura—much more cruel and envious; sattvasya—of the entity; apadesah—the name.


In this life, an envious person commits violent acts against many living entities. Therefore after his death, when he is taken to hell by Yamaraja, those living entities who were hurt by him appear as animals called rurus to inflict very severe pain upon him. Learned scholars call this hell Raurava. Not generally seen in this world, the ruru is more envious than a snake.


According to Sridhara Svami, the ruru is also known as the bhara-srnga (ati-krurasya bhara-srngakhya-sattvasya apadesah samjna). Srila Jiva Gosvami confirms this in his Sandarbha: ruru-sabdasya svayam muninaiva tika-vidhanal lokesv aprasiddha evayam jantu-visesah. Thus although rurus are not seen in this world, their existence is confirmed in the sastras.



evam eva maharauravo yatra nipatitam purusam kravyada nama ruravas tam kravyena ghatayanti yah kevalam dehambharah.


evam—thus; eva—certainly; maha-rauravah—the hell known as Maharaurava; yatra—where; nipatitam—being thrown; purusam—a person; kravyadah nama—named kravyada; ruravah—the ruru animals; tam—him (the condemned person); kravyena—for eating his flesh; ghatayanti—kill; yah—who; kevalam—only; dehambharah—intent upon maintaining his own body.


Punishment in the hell called Maharaurava is compulsory for a person who maintains his own body by hurting others. In this hell, ruru animals known as kravyada torment him and eat his flesh.


The animalistic person who lives simply in the bodily concept of life is not excused. He is put into the hell known as Maharaurava and attacked by ruru animals known as kravyadas.



yas tv iha va ugrah pasun paksino va pranata uparandhayati tam apakarunam purusadair api vigarhitam amutra yamanucarah kumbhipake tapta-taile uparandhayanti.


yah—a person who; tu—but; iha—in this life; va—or; ugrah—very cruel; pasun—animals; paksinah—birds; va—or; pranatah—in a live condition; uparandhayati—cooks; tam—him; apakarunam—very cruel-hearted; purusa-adaih—by those who eat human flesh; api—even; vigarhitam—condemned; amutra—in the next life; yama-anucarah—the servants of Yamaraja; kumbhipake—in the hell known as Kumbhipaka; tapta-taile—in boiling oil; uparandhayanti—cook.


For the maintenance of their bodies and the satisfaction of their tongues, cruel persons cook poor animals and birds alive. Such persons are condemned even by man-eaters. In their next lives they are carried by the Yamadutas to the hell known as Kumbhipaka, where they are cooked in boiling oil.



yas tv iha brahma-dhruk sa kalasutra-samjnake narake ayuta-yojana-parimandale tamramaye tapta-khale upary-adhastad agny-arkabhyam ati-tapyamane ’bhinivesitah ksut-pipasabhyam ca dahyamanantar-bahih-sarira aste sete cestate ’vatisthati paridhavati ca yavanti pasu-romani tavad varsa-sahasrani.


yah—anyone who; tu—but; iha—in this life; brahma-dhruk—the killer of a brahmana; sah—such a person; kalasutra-samjnake—named Kalasutra; narake—in the hell; ayuta-yojana-parimandale—having a circumference of eighty thousand miles; tamra-maye—made of copper; tapta—heated; khale—in a level place; upari-adhastat—above and beneath; agni—by fire; arkabhyam—and by the sun; ati-tapyamane—which is being heated; abhinivesitah—being made to enter; ksut-pipasabhyam—by hunger and thirst; ca—and; dahyamana—being burned; antah—internally; bahih—externally; sarirah—whose body; aste—remains; sete—sometimes lies; cestate—sometimes moves his limbs; avatisthati—sometimes stands; paridhavati—sometimes runs here and there; ca—also; yavanti—as many; pasu-romani—hairs on the body of an animal; tavat—that long; varsa-sahasrani—thousands of years.


The killer of a brahmana is put into the hell known as Kalasutra, which has a circumference of eighty thousand miles and which is made entirely of copper. Heated from below by fire and from above by the scorching sun, the copper surface of this planet is extremely hot. Thus the murderer of a brahmana suffers from being burned both internally and externally. Internally he is burning with hunger and thirst, and externally he is burning from the scorching heat of the sun and the fire beneath the copper surface. Therefore he sometimes lies down, sometimes sits, sometimes stands up and sometimes runs here and there. He must suffer in this way for as many thousands of years as there are hairs on the body of an animal.

Next verse (SB5.26.15)