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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > All Scriptures By Acharyas > Bhaktivinoda Thakura > Amnaya Sutra > Part one > Chapter-VII

Chapter Seven


Movements of the Spirit Souls



Sutra 41



samsara-dashash catasrah


     samsara - of the world of birth and death; dashah - the conditions; catasrah - four kinds.



     Four states of existence prevail in the world of birth and death.


Commentary by Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura



     In the Brihad-aranyaka Upanishad (4.4.9) it is said:



tasmin shuklam uta nilam ahuh

     pingalam haritam lohitam ca

esha patha brahmana hanuvritteh



     "The wise say that the path to the Supreme is white, blue, yellow, green, and red."


     In Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.12.23) it is said:



adanti caikam phalam asya gridhra

     grame cara ekam aranya-vasah

hamsa ya ekam bahu-rupam ijyer

     maya-mayam veda na deva-vedam



     "Those lusty for material enjoyment and dedicated to family life enjoy one of the tree's fruits, and swanlike men in the renounced order of life enjoy the other fruit. One who with the help of the bona fide spiritual masters can understand this tree to be a manifestation of the potency of the one Supreme Truth  appearing in many forms actually knows the meaning of  the Vedic literature."***


     In Shri Chaitanya-caritamrita (Madhya 20.136) it is said:



aiche shastra kahe karma jnana yoga tyaji'

`bhaktye' krishna vasha haya bhaktye tanre bhaji



     "Revealed scriptures conclude that one should give up fruitive activity, speculative knowledge, and the mystic yoga system and instead take to devotional service, by which Krishna can be fully satisfied."*



Sutra 42



avidyaya karma-dasha


     avidyaya - by ignorance; karma - of fruitive work; dasha - the condition.



     From ignorance comes the state of performing fruitive works.


Commentary by Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura



     In the Katha Upanishad (1.1.8) it is said:



asha pratikshe sangatam sunritam

     ceshta-purte putra-pashumsh ca sarvan

etad vrikte purushasyalpa-medhaso

     yasyanashnann vasati brahmano grihe



     "A foolish person in whose home a brahmana guest does not eat loses all hope. He loses good company, happiness, pious deeds, children, animals, and everything else."


     In the Atri-smriti it is said:



ishta-purtam ca kartavyam

     brahmanenaiva yatnatah

ishtena labhyate svargam

     purte moksho vidhayate


etadrishayam vimsha-




     "A brahmana should carefully perform the pious deeds known as ishta and purta. By performing ishta he attains Svargaloka. By performing purta he attains liberation. This is explained in the twenty dharma-shastras."


     In Vedanta-syamantaka it is said:



     bijankuradi vadanadi siddham karma tat khalu ashubham shubham ceti dvi-bhedam. vedena nishiddha-narakasyanishta-sadhanam brahmana-hananady-ashubham. tena vihitam kamyadi tu shubham. tatra svargadishta-sadhanam jyotishtomadi-kamyam akrite pratyavaya-janakam sandhyopasanagni-hotradi nityam. putra-janmady anu bandhi-jateshtyadi naimittikam durita-kshaya-karam candrayanadi prayashcittam iti shubham bahu-vidham.



     "Karmic reactions are of many kinds, beginning with those lying as seed and those just beginning to sprout. They are also divided into two kinds: auspicious and inauspicious. Those which are inauspicious, such as the murder of a brahmana, are forbidden by the Vedas. Materialistic actions that are nevertheless auspicious are encouraged by the Vedas. Therefore they who desire to go to Svargaloka or attain other material benefits are encouraged to perform jyotishtoma-yajnas and other Vedic rituals. However, if these are not performed then the daily duties of sandhyopasana and agnihotra create many obstacles. Thus one should perform the special duties such as the rites at a child's birth and the performance of the candrayana vow. Thus there are many kinds of auspicious deeds."



Sutra 43



vidyaya nyasa-dasha


     vidyaya - by knowledge; nyasa - of renunciation; dasha - the state.



     From knowledge comes the state of renunciation.


Commentary by Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura



     In the Upanishads it is said:



sa hovaca maitreyi yenaham namamritasyam kim aham tena kuryam.



     "he said: O Maitreyi, what shall I do to become immortal?"


     In the Yajnavalkya-smriti it is said:



sarva-bhuta-hitah shantas

     tridandi sa-kamandaluh

eka-vayah parivrajya-

     bhiksharthi gramam ashrayet.



     "Carrying a tridandi and a kamandalu, wearing only a single cloth, and concerned for the welfare of all, a sannyasi may sometimes enter a village in order to beg some alms."


     Shri Shankaracaraya explains:



     tasmad ete mantra atmano yathatmya-prakashanenatma-vishayam svabhavika-karma-vijnanam nivartayantah shoka-mohadi samsara-dharma-cic-chakti-sadhanam atmaikatvadi-vijnanam utpadayanti.



     "Therefore these mantras enable one to renounce materialistic deeds, which bring only grief, illusion, and a host of other disadvantages. These mantras also bring knowledge of the oneness of the Self."



Sutra 44



audasinyan nirdvandva-dasha


     audasinya - by indifference; nirdvandva - freedom from duality; dasha - the condition.



     From aloofness comes the state of freedom from duality.


Commentary by Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura



     In the Kena Upanishad (2.2) it is said:



naham manye suvedeti

     no na vedeti veda ca

yo nas tad veda tad veda

     no na vedeti veda ca



     "I do not think that I understand well. One who does not know, knows. Among us, one who knows, knows, and one who does not know, also knows."


     In the Bhagavad-gita (5.8-9), Lord Krishna explains:



naiva kincit karomiti

     yukto manyeta tattva-vit

pashyan shrinvan sprishan jighrann

     ashnan gacchan svapan shvasan


pralapan vishrijan grihnan

     unmishan nimishann api



     "A person in the divine consciousness, although engaged in seeing, hearing, touching, smelling, eating, moving about, sleeping, and breathing, always knows within himself that he actually does nothing at all. Because while speaking, evacuating, receiving, or opening or closing his eyes, he always knows that only the material senses are engaged with their objects and that he is aloof from them."*


     In Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.11.32) it is said:


ajnayayaiva gunan dosham

     mayadishtan api svakan

dharman santyajya yah sarvan

     mam bhajet sa ca sattamah



     "Such a saintly person must be considered the most learned of men. He perfectly understands that the ordinary religious duties prescribed by Me in various Vedic scriptures possess favorable qualities that purify the performer, and he knows that neglect of such duties constitutes a discrepancy in one's life. Having taken complete shelter at My lotus feet, however, a saintly person ultimately renounces such ordinary religious duties and worships Me alone. He is thus considered to be the best among all living entities."***





     In Shri Chaitanya-bhagavata, in the description of Lord Nityananda's renunciation, it is said:



ahar-nisha bhavaveshe parama uddama

sarva nadiyaya bule jyotirmaya dhama



     "Day and night He was filled with ecstatic love. The whole land of Nadiya became effulgent in His presence.



kiba yogi nityananda kiba tattva-jnani

jaya jemata iccha na balaye keni



     "What kind of yogi was Nityananda? How was He filled with spiritual knowledge? He did not desire anything of this world."



Sutra 45



bhaktau sarvatratma-bhava-dasha


     bhaktau - in devotiuonal service; sarvatra - everywhere; atma - for the Supreme Personality of Godhead; bhava - love; dasha - the state.



     When devotional service is practiced, the state of love for the Supreme Personality of Godhead comes into being.


Commentary by Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura



     In the Isha Upanishad (1-2) it is said:



ishavasyam idam sarvam

     yat kinca jagatyam jagat

tena tyaktena bhunjitha

     ma grihah kasyasvid dhanam


kurvann eveha karmani

     jijivishec chatam samah

evam tvayi nanyatho 'to 'sti

     na karma lipyate nare



     "Everything animate or inanimate that is within the universe is controlled and owned by the Lord. One should therefore accept only those things necessary for oneself, which are set aside as his quota, and one should not accept other things, knowing well to whom they belong."*


     In Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.20.32) it is said:



yat karmabhir yat tapasa

     jnana-vairagyatash ca yat

yogena dana-dharmena

     shreyobhir itarair api


sarvam yad bhakti-yogena

     mad-bhakto labhate 'njasa



     "Everything that can be achieved by fruitive activities, penance, knowledge, detachment, mystic yoga, charity, religious duties, and all other means of perfecting life is easily achieved by My devotee through loving service unto Me."***


     Shri Gauda-purnananda explains:



ayam prapancah khalu satya-bhuto

     mithya na ca shripati-sangrahena

shuddhatvam etasya nivedanena

     svarnam yatha rajati dhatu-jatam



     "Because it is created by the Supreme Lord, this material universe is real. It is not an illusion. When they are offered to the Supreme Lord, the things of this world become pure. They shine like gold.



vairagya-bhogav iti bhakti-madhye

     sthitav udasinataya khalu dvau

maha-prasada-grahanam tu nityam

     bhogah kadacit khalu bhaktir eva



     "Devotional service stands aloof from both sense gratification and renunciation. By the Lord's great mercy, devotional service is always filled with happiness."



Sutra 46



vishvaukasam tu prayashah karma-dashapannah


     vishva - in the material universe; okasam - of they who make their home; tu - indeed; prayashah - for the most part; karma - of fruitive actions; dasha - the state; apannah - attained.



     The residents of the material world are mostly on the level of performing fruitive work.


Commentary by Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura



     In the Katha Upanishad (1.2.3) it is said:



sa tvam priyan priya-rupamsh ca kaman

     abhidhyayan naciketo 'tyasrakshih

naityam shri\nkam vittamayim avapto

     yasyam majjanti bahavo manushyah.



     "O Naciketa, you have renounced the pleasures of this world. You do not walk on the path to wealth, a path so many follow."


     In Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.5.11) it is said:



loke vyavayamisha-madya-seva

     nitya hi jantor na hi tatra codana

vyavasthitis teshu vivaha-yajna-

     sura-grahair apta-nivrittir ishta



     "In this material world the conditioned soul is always inclined to sex, meat-eating, and intoxication. Therefore religious scriptures never actually encourage such activities. Although the scriptural injunctions provide for sex through sacred marriage, for meat-eating through sacrificial offerings, and for intoxication through acceptance of ritual cups of wine, such ceremonies are meant for the ultimate purpose of renunciation."***


     In Shri Chaitanya-caritamrita (Madhya 19.147) it is said:



dharmacari-madhye bahuta `karma-nishtha'

koti-karma-nishtha-madhye eka jnani shreshtha



     "Among the followers of Vedic knowledge, most are following the process of fruitive activity and distinguishing between good and bad work. Out of many such sincere fruitive actors, there may be one who is actually wise."*



Sutra 47



tesham kadacit samsara-gati-vivekah


     tesham - of them; kadacit - sometimes; samsara - of birth and death; gati - the way; vivekah - distinguishing.



     Sometimes the conditioned souls may wish to understand the truth about the path of birth and death.


Commentary by Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura



     In the Shvetashvatara Upanishad (1.1) it is said:



kim karanam brahma kutasma jatah

     jivama kena kva ca sampratishthitah

adhishthitah kena sukhetareshu

     vartamahe brahma-vido vyavasyam



     "The Brahmavadis say: What is the first, the great cause? From where were we born? How do we remain alive? Where do we go at death? O knowers of Brahman, by whose will are we subject to pleasure and pain?"


     In the Brahma-vaivarta Purana it is said:



yavat papais tu malinam

     hridayam tavad eva hi

na shastre satya-buddhih syat

     sambandhah sad-gurau tatha



     punya-rashi-phalam mahat

sat-sangac chastra-shravanad

     eva premadi jayate



     "As long as his heart is polluted with sins, a person cannot understand the truth of the Vedic literatures. After many births of pious deeds, one attains a bona fide spiritual master. Then, by hearing the Vedic scriptures in the association of the devotees, one attains love and devotion for the Supreme Lord."


     Shri Sanatana Gosvami asked the following question (Chaitanya-caritamrita, Madhya 20.102):



ke ami kena amaya jare tapa-traya

iha nahi jani kemane hita haya



     "Who am I? Why do the threefold miseries always give me trouble? If I do not know this, how can I be benefited?"*



Sutra 48



mocanopaya-jijnasa ca


     mocana - of liberation; upaya - the means; jijnasa - tyhe desire to know; ca - also.



     Then they also desire to know how they may become liberated.


Commentary by Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura



     In the Mundaka Upanishad (1.2.12) it is said:



parikshya lokan karma-citan brahmano

     nirveda-mayan nasty akritah kritena

tad-vijnanartham sa gurum evabhigacchet

     samit-panih shrotriyam brahma-nishtham



     "Having analyzed the nature of fruitive activities in the material world, one should understand that they are all useless and then one should renounce them all.

     "To learn the transcendental subject matter, one must approach a spiritual master. In doing so he should carry fuel to burn in sacrifice. The symptom of such a spiritual master is that he is expert in understanding the Vedic conclusion and therefore he constantly engages in the service of the Supreme Personality of Godhead."*


     In Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.18.38) it is said:



duhkhodarkeshu kameshu

     jata-nirveda atmavan


     gurum munim upavrajet



     "One who is detached from sense gratification, knowing its result to be miserable, and who desires spiritual perfection, but who has not seriously analyzed the process for obtaining Me, should approach a bona fide and learned spiritual master."***


     Shri Nimbarka Svami explains:



upasya-rupam tad-upasyakasya

     kripalavo bhaktivatas tatah param virodhino rupam athaitad-aptaye

     jneya ime 'rtha api panca sadhubhih



Sutra 49



asat-sanga-tyagena tat-phalodayah


     asat - of the impious; sanga - association; tyagena - by renunciation; tat - of that; phala - result; udayah - arisal.



     By renouncing the association of the impious one attains that result.


Commentary by Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura



     In the Taittiriya Upanishad it is said:



yany asmakam sucaritani tani tvayopasyani no itarani.



     "One should associate with they who act properly and avoid all others."


     In the Katha Upanishad (1.2.9) it is said:



naisha tarkena matir apaneya

     proktanyenaiva su-jnanaya preshtha



     "O dear one, the Supreme cannot be understood by material logic or by the words of one who is not enlightened."


     In Shrimad-Bhagavatam (3.31.34) it is said:



teshv ashanteshu mudheshu


sangam na kuryac chocyeshu

     yoshit-krida-mrigeshu ca



     "One should not associate with a coarse fool who is bereft of the knowledge of self-realization and who is no more than a dancing dog in the hands of a woman."*


     In the Hari-bhakti-sudhodaya it is said:



yasya yat-sangatih pumso

     manivat syat sa tad-gunah

sakula-dvaitato dhiman

     sva-yuthyan eva samshrayet



     "The association of devotees is like a precious jewel. Therefore a wise man avoids the non-devotees and takes shelter of the Lord's devotees."


     In Shri Chaitanya-caritamrita (Madhya 22.87) it is said:



asat-sanga tyaga ei vaishnava acara

stri-sangi eka asadhu krishnabhakta ara



     "A Vaishnava should always avoid the association of ordinary people. Common people are very much materially attached, especially to women. Vaishnavas should also avoid the company of those who are not devotees of Lord Krishna."*



Sutra 50



sat-sangac chastrabhidehya-vijnasa


     sat - of devotees; sangat - by the association; shastra - of the scriptures; abhidehya - the menaing; vijnasa - the desire to know.



     By associating with devotees one attains the desire to understand the scriptures.


Commentary by Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura



     In the Kena Upanishad it is said:



upanishadam bho bruhi.



     "Please narrate the Upanishads to me."


     In Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.2.29-30) it is said:



durlabho manusho deho

     dehinam kshana-bhangurah

tatrapi durlabham manye




     "For the conditioned souls the human body is most difficult to achieve, and it can be lost at any moment. But I think that even those who have achieved human life rarely gain the association of pure devotees, who are dear to the Lord of Vaikuntha.***



ata atyantikam kshemam

     pricchamo bhavato 'nagha

samsare 'smin kshanardho 'pi

     sat-sanga-shevadhir nrinam



     "Therefore, O completely sinless ones, I ask you to kindly tell me what the supreme good is. After all, even half a moment's association with pure devotees within this world of birth and death is a priceless treasure for any man."***


     In Shri Chaitanya-caritamrita (Madhya 22.14) it is said:



bhramite bhramite yadi sadhu vaidya paya

tanra upadesha mantre pishaci palaya



     "Wandering and wandering throughout the universe, the conditioned soul may by chance get the association of a devotee physician, whose instructions and hymns make the witch of external energy flee."*