Click here to load whole tree
NITAAI-Veda.nyf > Shrimad Bhagavad Gita > Gita By Acharyas > Gita 09 Raja Guhya Yoga

Ch 9. Raja-guhya Yoga

Yoga Through the Most Confidential Knowledge

Raja-vidya or raja-guhya refers only to suddha-bhakti-yoga. Prakrti (material nature) is not the original cause of the cosmic creation, because prakrti only gets the potency to create by Bhagavan's inspiration. It is foolish and offensive to think that Bhagavan Shri Krishna is a human being, or that his sac-cid-ananda body is made of five material elements like the body of an ordinay conditioned soul (baddha-jiva). Genuine mahatmas engage in the bhajana of Shri Krishna with exclusive devotional moods (ananya bhava), and Shri Krishna personally attends to their necessities (yoga-ksema). It is against the pescribed rules to perform bhajana of different devatas, because Shri Krishna alone is the enjoyer and maste of all yajnas. Shri Bhagavan accepts that which is offered by the suddha bhaktas with love. In the last sloka in this chapter (man mana bhava mad-bhaktah), it is concluded that bhakti is the only means to attain Shri Bhagavan.

The Glories of Chapter Nine
Lord Siva said. ďMy dear Parvati, now I will relate to you the glories of the Ninth Chanter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita.
There was a town of the name Mahismati on the bank of the Narmada River, where one brahmana of the name Madhava lived. That brahmana very strictly followed all the injunctions of the Vedas, and possessed all the good qualities of the brahminical class. Due to his being so learned, he would receive a lot of charity. And with his accumulated wealth, he started to perform a great fire-sacrifice. For offering in sacrifice, one goat was bought, and when they started to cleanse that goat in preparation for itís sacrifice, to everyoneís great surprise the goat started to laugh and in a loud voice said; ďOh, brahmana, what is the benefit of performing so many fire-sacrifices that simply bind us up in the wheel of birth and death. Just see my position due to my performing so many fire-sacrifices.Ē

When everyone gathered there heard the words of the goat, they became curious, and that brahmana inquired with folded hands, ďhow did you become goat? In your previous life, which caste did you belong to and what activities did you perform?Ē The goat replied, ďOh, brahmana, in my previous birth I was born in a very pure brahmana family and I very carefully performed all the ritualistic activities enjoined in the Vedas. One day wife wished to worship Durga, so that our child might he cured of his disease, for this purpose she requested me to bring one goat. When we sacrificed the goat at the temple of Mother Durga; the goat cursed me, ďOh, sinful, lowest of all, you wish to make my children fatherless. For this reason you will also take birth as a goat.Ē Oh, Madhava, when the time for my death came I attained this body of a goat but by the grace of Lord Govinda I can remember my previous births. If you wish to hear one other interesting story then I will tell you. In the place known as Kuruksetra which is capable of giving liberation, there once lived a king of the name Chandrasharma, who was in the dynasty of the sun-god. Once, at the time of the solar-eclipse, the king wished to give charity to one brahmana. Included in that charity was a Sudra, whose body was completely black. After going with his priest and taking bath in the sacred lake, putting on clean cloth and applying sandalwood, he returned to his place. With devotion he gave charity to a qualified Brahmana. After he had presented the charity, all of a sudden from that black Sudrasís heart, one very sinful chandala (dog-eater) appeared and after a little while, a female chandala appeared from that black sudrasís body, and together they went close to the brahmana. All of a sudden they entered in to the body of the brahmana. That brahmana remained undisturbed and started to chant the Ninth Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita, while remembering Lord Govinda. The king witnessing all these activities was stunned, unable to say anything. As soon as the words of the Ninth Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita came on the lips of that brahmana, the Vishnudutas appeared there and chased away those two chandalas. At that time the king inquired from the brahmana, ďOh, learned one, who were those two persons and which mantra did you chant? Which deity did you remember?Ē The brahmana replied, ďTaking the form of a chandala, sin personified appeared, along with offense personified in the form of that female chandala. At that time I started chanting the Ninth Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita, which is capable of releasing one from all fearful situations. By reciting the Ninth Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita, I am always able to remember the lotus-feet of Lord GovindaĒ.

Upon hearing this the king learned the chanting of the Shrimad Bhagavad-gita, Ninth Chapter, from the brahmana. Gradually he managed to attain the lotus-feet of Lord Govinda. When Madhava heard this discourse from the goat, he immediately freed the goat and started to engage in reciting the Ninth Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita daily and thus he also gained the lotus-feet of Lord Govinda.

Ch 9 Verse 1

shri-bhagavan uvaca
idam tu te guhyatamam / pravakshyamy anasuyave
jnanam vijnana-sahitam / yaj jnatva mokshyase 'shubhat

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.1 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/1/en>

shri-bhagavan uvaca---the all-opulent Lord said; pravakshyami---I shall explain; te---to you; anasuyave---who are non-envious; idam---this; guhyatamam---most confidential; jnanam vijnanasahitam tu---knowledge together with realised knowledge, i.e. which has the symptoms of exclusive and pure devotion; jnatva--- knowing; yat---which; mokshyase---you shall be released; ashubhat--- from inauspiciousness, i.e. from this miserable cycle of samsara.

Shri Bhagavan said: O Arjuna, because you are non-envious, I will impart to you this most confidential knowledge, which is endowed with the characteristics of shuddha-bhakti and which bestows direct realisation of Me. Such knowledge will liberate you from the miseries of the material world.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

The Ninth Chapter gives knowledge of Shri Bhagavan's aishvarya. Such jnana is desired by His bhaktas so that they can favourably execute their service to Him. This chapter clearly describes the supremacy of shuddha-bhakti. In comparison to karma, jnana and yoga, we find that bhakti is supreme. Bhakti is of two types: pradhani-bhuta and kevala, both of which have been explained in the Seventh and Eighth Chapters. Of these two, kevala-bhakti is extremely powerful and unlike jnana does not depend upon purity of heart. This in itself substantiates the supremacy of kevalabhakti. Knowledge of Bhagavan's aishvarya is necessary to perform kevala-bhakti. Details of that aishvarya are given in this Ninth Chapter. The middle eight chapters (Six to Thirteen), are the essence of Bhagavad-gita and of all Vedic literature, and the Ninth and Tenth Chapters are the essence of these middle chapters. Shri Bhagavan is glorifying the subject matter that will be defined in three consecutive shlokas, the first of which begins with the words idam tu. "Jnana, which is favourable for liberation, as described in the Second and Third Chapters, is called guhyam, confidential. The Seventh and Eighth Chapters explain knowledge of bhagavattattva, which is essential for one who wishes to attain Me. Such knowledge of bhakti-tattva is called guhyatara, more confidential. Now in this chapter I shall explain that jnana along with the characteristics of shuddha-bhakti, which is guhyatama, most confidential."

Here the word jnana should only be understood to mean bhakti. It does not refer to the regular jnana delineated in the first six chapters. In the next shloka, the word jnana indiSh cates only bhakti since the word avyaya, eternal, has been used as an adjective for jnana. This is because it refers to a transcendental nature in this context and it does not indicate the jnana previously mentioned, which is sattvika, but not nirguna or gunatita.

In the shloka: ashraddadhanah purusha dharmasyasya parantapa (Gita 9.3), the word dharma only means bhakti. Here the word anasuyave means that this instruction is for those who are non-envious. It is not meant for others. Vijnana-sahitam means, "I shall impart this instruction to you which leads to direct realisation of Me. This will free you from an inauspicious life, which is unfavourable to bhakti. With this jnana, you will become free from all obstacles."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

In the Seventh and Eighth Chapters, Shri Krishna explained pradhani-bhuta bhakti and kevala-bhakti, and the difference between the two. In the present chapter He is clarifying the supremacy of kevala-bhakti. Kevala-bhakti does not depend on purification of the heart. Bhakti Devi can even mercifully enter the hearts of extremely abominable persons who are gripped by all types of anarthas, and turn those persons into supremely pure, highly exalted maha-bhagavatas who are worshipable for the whole world. She is very powerful in her own right. Spiritual jnana, as explained in the Second and Third Chapters, is helpful to attain moksha and it is guhya, confidential. Bhagavat-tattva-jnana, as described in the Seventh and Eighth Chapters, causes bhakti to appear and is guhyatara, more confidential. The present chapter describes jnana related to kevala-bhakti, as instructed by Bhagavan. This jnana is guhyatama, most confidential. Only with the help of this guhyatama-jnana can one attain freedom from the inauspiciousness of this world. "This guhyatama-jnana related to shuddha-bhakti is parama-vijnana-maya, that is, it can bestow direct realisation of Me." Vijnana means to comprehend that jnana which is related to Shri Bhagavan, specifically with realisation. Bhagavan said to Brahma:
jnanam parama-guhyam me / yad vijnana-samanvitam
sarahasyam tad-angan ca / grihana gaditam maya
Shrimad-Bhagavatam 2.9.31

Knowledge of Me is non-dual, absolute and highly confidential. Although non-dual, it has four eternal divisions: jnana (My svarupa), vijnana (realisation of Me), rahasya (prema-bhakti unto Me) and tad-anga-pradhana (sadhana-bhakti, the means to attain Me). The jiva cannot understand this with his limited intelligence. He can only realise it by My mercy. Jnana is My svarupa and vijnana is one.s relationship with Me through bhakti. The jiva is My rahasya and the pradhana is My jnana-anga (all that is accessory to My svarupa).The eternal non-duality and the eternal confidential difference between these four principles is due to My acintya-shakti. Bhagavan also spoke this to Uddhava:
athaitat paramam guhyam / shrinvato yadu-nandana
su-gopyam api vakshyami / tvam me bhrityah suhrit sakha
Shrimad-Bhagavatam 11.11.49

O Yadu-nandana (Uddhava), please hear this most confidential knowledge. Although it is extremely confidential, I will speak it to you because you are My servant and well-wishing friend. In Shrimad-Bhagavatam (1.1.8), Shri Shaunaka and other rishis requested Shrila Suta Gosvami to explain such realised confidential truths:
vettham tvam saumya tat sarvam
tattvatas tad-anugrahat
bruyuh snigdhasya shishyasya
guravo guhyam apy uta

The guru-varga also explains these extremely confidential se crets to disciples of an affectionate nature.

Here also, Bhagavan Shri Krishna is imparting this guhyatamaj nana to Arjuna knowing him to be free from envy and hatred, and possessing an affectionate heart. The meaning is that this guhyatama-jnana is instructed by a genuine tattvaj na-guru, only to the type of disciple previously mentioned. A similar instruction is given in Shvetashvatara Upanishad (6.22.23):
vedante paramam guhyam purakalpe pracoditam
naprashantaya datavyam naputraya sishyaya va punah
yasya deve para bhaktir yatha deve tatha gurau
tasyaite kathita hy arthah prakashante mahatmanah

Bhagavad-upasana-tattva, the principle of worshipping Bhagavan, is the essence of Vedanta and is highly confidential. In ancient times, Shri Bhagavan illuminated the heart of Shvetashvatara Rishi with this tattva, being pleased by his worship. Therefore, although this instruction is not for one who is not a shuddha-bhakta, it can be bestowed to a sober son or disciple who is a bhakta of Bhagavan. This instruction should not be imparted to anyone else, even if one is moved by affection for that person. All the confidential meanings of the shrutis fully illuminate the heart of that sadhaka, that mahatma who has para bhakti for Bhagavan and equally for his gurudeva. In this context, it is worth contemplating Bhagavad-gita (18.54-58).

Ch 9 Verse 2

raja-vidya raja-guhyam / pavitram idam uttamam
pratyakshavagamam dharmyam / su-sukham karttum avyayam

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.2 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/2/en>

idam---this (knowledge); (is) raja-vidya---the king of all knowledge; raja-guhyam---the king of all confidential topics; uttamam pavitram---the most pure knowledge; (it is) pratyakshaavagamam ---directly realised; (it is) dharmyam---conducive to virtue; (it is) karttum su-sukham---performed joyfully (without difficulty); (it is) avyayam---imperishable.

This jnana is the king of all knowledge and the monarch of all confidential subjects. It is extremely pure and, since it directly reveals the nature of the self, it is the perfection of dharma. It is joyfully performed, bestowing transcendental and imperishable results.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

Moreover, this knowledge is the king of all knowledge. There are various types of jnana and worship, but their only raja (king) is bhakti. This bhakti is the raja of confidential subjects. In other words, bhakti herself is very confidential.

Although knowledge is of many varieties, this particular jnana (bhakti), along with vijnana (realisation of that knowledge), is the raja of them all, as it is the most confidential. All sinful activities are atoned for by this bhakti (jnana along with vijnana), which shows that this bhakti is pure. It is more purifying than tvam-padartha-jnana, knowledge of the self.

Shripada Madhusudana Sarasvati says that this bhakti can destroy, within the blink of an eye, the gross and subtle stages of all types of sinful activities accumulated over thousands of lifetimes, as well as their cause, which is ignorance. Thus it is supremely purifying. Pratyaksha avagamam means that which can be perceived or realised directly. Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.2.42) states:
bhaktih pareshanubhavo viraktir
anyatra caisha trika eka-kalah
prapadyamanasya yathashnatah syus
tushtih pushtih kshud-apayo .nu-ghasam

A person who is absorbed in eating achieves happiness from tasting every mouthful of food, nourishment as his stomach is filled and relief as his hunger is removed. These three results come to him simultaneously. In the same way, a person who is engaged in bhajana of Shri Hari simultaneously attains prema, realisation of Parameshvara and detachment from sense objects.

According to this statement from the Eleventh Canto, a person attains realisation of Bhagavan in proportion to the intensity of his bhajana. This jnana (bhakti) is dharmyam, meaning that it is not beyond the boundaries of dharmika laws (i.e. not adharmika). A person can attain the perfection of all occupational duties simply by bhakti, even if he does not perform any other dharmika duties. In Shrimad- Bhagavatam (4.31.14), Devarishi Narada also says, "Just as by watering the root of a tree, its trunk, branches and leaves become nourished, similarly, by worshipping Bhagavan Acyuta alone, everyone else is automatically worshipped."

Karttum su-sukham means that one does not have to undergo too much physical, mental or verbal misery on the path of bhakti, unlike the processes of karma, jnana, etc. In the practice of bhakti, characterised by shravanam, kirtanam and so on, only the senses such as the ears and tongue are engaged. Since bhakti is beyond the modes (nirguna), it is not perishable like karma, jnana and so forth.

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

This Ninth Chapter describes kevala-bhakti, which is nirguna. This jnana in the form of kevala-bhakti is the crestjewel of all vidya. It is supremely confidential, most purifying and experienced by direct perception. It bestows the fruits of all other dharmika processes, is joyfully performed and bestows imperishable results.

Here, the word vidya means worship (upasana), hence kevala-bhakti is the best of all vidyas. For this reason, it is called raja-vidya and, because it is the most confidential among all confidential subjects, it is called raja-guhya. Pavitram idam uttamam: Sins are not completely destroyed by performing atonements such as dana (charity), yajna (offering oblations) and tapas (candrayana-vrata etc.). Furthermore, even by once removing the results of sins through such processes as tapasya and brahmacarya, there is the possibility that the tendency to sin will again sprout. However, according to shastras such as Shrimad-Bhagavatam, sins are completely destroyed by the performance of kevala-bhakti. This is true to such an extent that all sins are destroyed at the root simply by the concomitant results of kevala-bhakti. In other words, even the very desire to perform sin is destroyed. This is not possible by processes other than bhakti, such as prayashcitta (atonement), brahmacarya and tapasya. In Shrimad-Bhagavatam (6.1.15) this is confirmed: kecit kevalaya bhaktya / vasudeva-parayanah. "Only by kevala-bhakti can all one.s sins be eradicated at the root." And also in 6.1.16, na tatha hy aghavan rajan / puyeta tapa-adibhih. "All one's sins can be removed only by service to Shri Krishna.s pure representative and not by any other process."

In Shri Bhakti-rasamrita-sindhu, the first characteristic of kevala-bhakti is described as klesha-ghni. Klesha-ghni means that this bhakti completely destroys all sin (papa), the seed of sin (papa-bija), ignorance (avidya), fructified reaction (prarabdhakarma) and unfructified reaction (aprarabdha-karma).

aprarabdham-phalam papam / kutam bijam phalonmukham
kramenaiva praliyate / vishnu-bhakti-ratatmanam
Padma Purana

Kevala-bhakti not only purifies the gross and subtle designations of the jiva, but it also purifies and satisfies the atma:

yayatma suprasidati (Shrimad-Bhagavatam 1.2.6).

According to the shloka: atmaramash ca munayo (Shrimad-Bhagavatam 1.7.10), bhakti.s attraction is the bliss one derives from serving Krishna, by which even those who are atmarama (satisfied within the self) and aptakama (who have no desires left to fulfil) are attracted and give up such natures.

Pratyaksha anubhava-svarupa: Just as a person feels satisfaction, nourishment and the removal of hunger with every mouthful of food that he eats, similarly prema, direct experience of Bhagavan, as well as aversion to sense enjoyment, appear simultaneously within a sadhaka-bhakta, even during sadhana-dasha (the practice stage).

bhaktih pareshanubhavo viraktir
anyatra caisha trika eka-kalah
prapadyamanasya yathashnatah syus
tushtih pushtih kshud-apayo 'nu-ghasam
Shrimad-Bhagavatam 11.2.42

The processes of karma, yoga, jnana, etc., cannot bestow direct realisation upon the sadhaka in the way that bhakti can. Brahma-sutra also states: prakashash ca karmany abhyasat. "Bhakti is so powerful that she bestows an experience of herself even in the initial stages."

Sarva-dharma-phala-prada: By performing bhakti one receives the complete result of all types of dharma and also attains bhagavat-prema, which is the objective established in the Vedas, Upanishads and other shrutis. According to the shloka: sarva-dharman parityajya mam ekam sharanam vraja (Gita 18.66), having given up all types of dharma, such as varnashrama-dharma, karma, jnana, yoga and all other paths that are followed for the purpose of satisfying the body and mind, and taking exclusive shelter of kevala-bhakti by performing bhajana to Shri Krishna, one can easily and naturally attain the result of all the previously mentioned processes.

As it is said in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (1.2.13): samsiddhir harito shanam, "The highest perfection in life is to please Shri Hari." And (11.20.33): sarvam mad-bhakti-yogena / mad-bhakto labhate 'njasa, .By pure devotional service My bhakta can very easily achieve such benedictions as Svarga, liberation or My supreme abode."

Although the performance of different dharmika processes does not exist in the practice of kevala-bhakti, the real dharma of the jiva, which is to serve guru and so forth, remains present within him. The shruti also confirms this opinion in mantras such as: acaryavan purusho veda. Devarishi Narada also establishes this in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (4.31.14):

yatha taror mula-nishecanena
tripyanti tat-skandha-bhujopashakhah
pranopaharac ca yathendriyanam
tathaiva sarvarhanam acyutejya
Just as by properly watering the root of a tree, it.s trunk, branches, twigs, leaves and flowers are nourished, and just as by eating food the prana (life air) is satisfied and all the senses nourished, in the same way only by worshipping Shri Bhagavan is everyone worshipped.

Sukha-sadhya (su-sukham): The sadhana of kevala-bhakti involves no difficulty as the paths of jnana, yoga and so on do; instead one experiences happiness. It is therefore called sukha-sadhya, meaning that the final result, sadhya, is joyfully performed. The sadhana of bhakti can be performed simply by engaging the senses such as the tongue and ear in chanting the sweet holy names of Krishna and by hearing about His lila, or merely by using tulasi leaves and a little water. Prahlada Maharaja also gave this instruction to the sons of the asuras: na hy acyutam prinayato bahv-ayasah. "To please Bhagavan Shri Krishna, who is Acyuta, one does not have to work laboriously," (Shrimad-Bhagavatam 7.6.19).While commenting on this shloka, Shrila Vishvanatha Cakravarti Thakura says, "Although one has to endure great troubles to maintain the family and make them happy, one need not undergo such trouble to please Shri Hari. Because He is ever situated within the heart of everyone as Antaryami, one need not undergo any trouble searching for Him. One can please Him at all times, in all circumstances and in all respects, even by performing manasa seva or by following any one of the processes of bhakti such as shravanam and kirtanam, or just by desiring to perform service. Thus, there is no pain involved in performing bhakti."One experiences joy even while performing bhakti in the stage of sadhana.

tam sukharadhyam rijubhir / ananya-sharanair nribhih
Shrimad-Bhagavatam 3.19.36
Shri Krishna is easily pleased by a person who has completely surrendered and who is simple-hearted.

It is also said in Gautamiya-Tantra:
tulasi-dala-matrena / jalasya culukena va
vikriinite svam atmanam / bhaktebhyo bhakta-vatsalah
Bhagavan, who is bhakta-vatsala, completely sells Himself to those bhaktas who, with love and devotion, offer Him a tulasi leaf and a palmful of water.

Akshaya-phala-prada (avyayam): The processes of karma, jnana and yoga are impermanent. After yielding perfection (the goal), such processes become futile and are then abandoned. However, bhakti exists in the stages of both sadhana and siddha, because bhakti herself is not only the sadhana but is also the sadhya (goal to be achieved). Even in the liberated stage bhakti is not lost, but rather it is performed purely and pperfectly. Therefore, it is permanent and unchanging.

Ch 9 Verse 3

ashraddadhanah purusha / dharmasyasya parantapa
aprapya mam nivarttante / mrityu-samsara-vartmani

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.3 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/3/en>

parantapa---O conqueror of the foe; purushah---persons; ashraddadhanah---who are faithless; asya---in this; dharmasya--- practice of devotional service; aprapya---without attaining; mam---Me; nivarttante---they return; vartmani---on the path; samsara---of material existence; mrityu---and death.

O Parantapa, those who have no faith in this dharma in the form of My bhakti do not attain Me. They wander on the path of material existence, which is full of death.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

Arjuna may raise the following doubt: "If this dharma is so easily perfected, why do people remain in material existence?" In response to this, Shri Bhagavan speaks this shloka beginning with ashraddadhanah. The word asya means dharma in the form of bhakti. Ashraddadhanah purushah means people who lack faith in this.

"The superiority of bhakti is established by the statements of shastra, but those who are faithless consider such glorification to be an exaggeration. They reject this dharma due to atheistic intelligence. Even if someone renounces the path of bhakti and practises severe alternative measures to attain Me, still he will not be successful. Instead, he will continuously wander on this path of material existence which is pervaded by death."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

Even after hearing and being acquainted with the glories of bhakti as described here, some consider these glories to be an exaggeration and they do not develop faith in bhakti. Such faithless persons who do not adopt bhagavad-bhakti are forced to take repeated births in this material world. Shraddha (faith) is the root cause of bhakti. One can only attain Bhagavan, who is bhakta-vatsala, by bhakti. This is also confirmed in Chaitanya-caritamrita (Madhya-lila 22.64): shraddhavan jana haya bhakti-adhikari. "Those who are faithful are eligible for bhakti." Furthermore, it is said:

brahmanda bhramite kona bhagyavan jiva
guru-krishna-prasade paya bhakti-lata-bija
Madhya-lila 19.151

In the course of wandering throughout this universe, a rare jiva who is extremely fortunate, obtains the seed of the creeper of bhakti by the mercy of Shri Gurudeva.

Shri Gurudeva infuses the desire to serve Shri Krishna into the heart of the jivas. This desire is known as krishna-seva-vasana, and by it one attains paramarthika-shraddha, transcendental faith, which is the root cause of bhakti. Those who are faithless and unfortunate do not take shelter of this path of bhakti which has been established in all shastra. They try to attain Shri Bhagavan by adopting other processes such as the performance of pious activities, jnana, yoga and tapasya, but their whimsical attempts go in vain. Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.12.9) states:

yam na yogena sankhyena / dana-vrata-tapo-.dhvaraih
vyakhya-svadhyaya-sannyasaih / prapnuyad yatnavan api
Even though one engages with great endeavour in mystic yoga, philosophical speculation, charity, vows, penances, ritualistic sacrifices, teaching Vedic mantras to others, personal study of the Vedas, or the renounced order of life, still one cannot achieve Me.

Furthermore, the essence of Shrila Vishvanatha Cakravarti Thakura.s commentary on Shrimad-Bhagavatam (10.87.33) is as follows: "Those who abandon service to the lotus feet of Shri Gurudeva, which is their primary support on the path of bhakti, and who desire to subdue their minds by yoga or other methods, are pursuing futile hopes. They fall down into the ocean of material existence, which is full of obstacles and various types of calamities." Shri Bhagavan has also explained this topic in great detail in Bhagavad-gita (3.31 and 12.20).

9.4

maya tatam idam sarvam / jagad avyakta-murttina
mat-sthani sarva-bhutani / na caham teshv avasthitah

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.4 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/4/en>

idam---this; sarvam---entire; jagat---cosmic manifestion; tatam--- is pervaded; maya---by Me; avyakta-murttina---by My form which is unmanifest (to the senses); sarva-bhutani---all living beings; mat-sthani---are situated in Me; ca---yet; aham---I; na avasthitah---am not situated; teshu---in them.

This whole universe is pervaded by Me in My svarupa which is unmanifest to the material senses. All living beings and elements are situated in Me, but I am not in them.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

Shri Bhagavan says, "Only when bhakti is in the mood of dasya (servitorship) do My bhaktas desire knowledge of My aishvarya." To explain this knowledge, Bhagavan is speaking seven shlokas starting here beginning with the word maya. "I am the cause of this world, and I pervade it through My svarupa which is avyakta, unmanifest and beyond the senses. Thus all moving and non-moving beings are situated in Me, who am the cause of everything and the complete conscious entity. Even so, because I am asanga, aloof and unattached, I am not situated in the created beings, unlike earth which is present in its effects (i.e. earthen objects such as pots)."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

Parinama: Milk is a pure substance. By contact with acid, it turns to curd. This is called a transformation. Thus curd is a parinama (effect or product) of milk when milk is transformed. Vivartta: To mistake one object for another is called vivartta. Examples of vivartta are mistaking a rope for a snake, and thinking that there is silver in an oyster.

The essence of Shri Krishna.s instruction lies herein. "This universe is not a parinama (transformation) of Me, nor is it a vivartta (illusion). I am the Absolute Self-effulgent Reality. The jivas and the universe are also real; both are the parinama of My shakti. The jivas are eternal and have come into existence from the tatastha-shakti, but the material world, which is born from My bahiranga-shakti, is temporary and subject to destruction even though it is real. The jivas and the universe are transformations of My shakti, which is nondifferent from Me; hence they are simultaneously one with and different from Me. This conception is acintya (inconceivable), because it can be understood only by shastra and can not be experienced by ordinary intelligence. Wherever one experiences both difference and oneness at the same time, the perception of difference is indeed stronger than the perception of oneness. Therefore, I am the Absolute Conscious Entity, different from both the jiva as well as the universe."

9.4

maya tatam idam sarvam / jagad avyakta-murttina
mat-sthani sarva-bhutani / na caham teshv avasthitah

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.4 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/4/en>

idam---this; sarvam---entire; jagat---cosmic manifestion; tatam--- is pervaded; maya---by Me; avyakta-murttina---by My form which is unmanifest (to the senses); sarva-bhutani---all living beings; mat-sthani---are situated in Me; ca---yet; aham---I; na avasthitah---am not situated; teshu---in them.

This whole universe is pervaded by Me in My svarupa which is unmanifest to the material senses. All living beings and elements are situated in Me, but I am not in them.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

Shri Bhagavan says, "Only when bhakti is in the mood of dasya (servitorship) do My bhaktas desire knowledge of My aishvarya." To explain this knowledge, Bhagavan is speaking seven shlokas starting here beginning with the word maya. "I am the cause of this world, and I pervade it through My svarupa which is avyakta, unmanifest and beyond the senses. Thus all moving and non-moving beings are situated in Me, who am the cause of everything and the complete conscious entity. Even so, because I am asanga, aloof and unattached, I am not situated in the created beings, unlike earth which is present in its effects (i.e. earthen objects such as pots)."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

Parinama: Milk is a pure substance. By contact with acid, it turns to curd. This is called a transformation. Thus curd is a parinama (effect or product) of milk when milk is transformed. Vivartta: To mistake one object for another is called vivartta. Examples of vivartta are mistaking a rope for a snake, and thinking that there is silver in an oyster.

The essence of Shri Krishna.s instruction lies herein. "This universe is not a parinama (transformation) of Me, nor is it a vivartta (illusion). I am the Absolute Self-effulgent Reality. The jivas and the universe are also real; both are the parinama of My shakti. The jivas are eternal and have come into existence from the tatastha-shakti, but the material world, which is born from My bahiranga-shakti, is temporary and subject to destruction even though it is real. The jivas and the universe are transformations of My shakti, which is nondifferent from Me; hence they are simultaneously one with and different from Me. This conception is acintya (inconceivable), because it can be understood only by shastra and can not be experienced by ordinary intelligence. Wherever one experiences both difference and oneness at the same time, the perception of difference is indeed stronger than the perception of oneness. Therefore, I am the Absolute Conscious Entity, different from both the jiva as well as the universe."

URL of this page
http://bhagavad-gita.gaurangapada.com/index.html?page= 9.4.htm <9.4.htm>

9.4

maya tatam idam sarvam / jagad avyakta-murttina
mat-sthani sarva-bhutani / na caham teshv avasthitah

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.4 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/4/en>

idam---this; sarvam---entire; jagat---cosmic manifestion; tatam--- is pervaded; maya---by Me; avyakta-murttina---by My form which is unmanifest (to the senses); sarva-bhutani---all living beings; mat-sthani---are situated in Me; ca---yet; aham---I; na avasthitah---am not situated; teshu---in them.

This whole universe is pervaded by Me in My svarupa which is unmanifest to the material senses. All living beings and elements are situated in Me, but I am not in them.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

Shri Bhagavan says, "Only when bhakti is in the mood of dasya (servitorship) do My bhaktas desire knowledge of My aishvarya." To explain this knowledge, Bhagavan is speaking seven shlokas starting here beginning with the word maya. "I am the cause of this world, and I pervade it through My svarupa which is avyakta, unmanifest and beyond the senses. Thus all moving and non-moving beings are situated in Me, who am the cause of everything and the complete conscious entity. Even so, because I am asanga, aloof and unattached, I am not situated in the created beings, unlike earth which is present in its effects (i.e. earthen objects such as pots)."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

Parinama: Milk is a pure substance. By contact with acid, it turns to curd. This is called a transformation. Thus curd is a parinama (effect or product) of milk when milk is transformed. Vivartta: To mistake one object for another is called vivartta. Examples of vivartta are mistaking a rope for a snake, and thinking that there is silver in an oyster.

The essence of Shri Krishna.s instruction lies herein. "This universe is not a parinama (transformation) of Me, nor is it a vivartta (illusion). I am the Absolute Self-effulgent Reality. The jivas and the universe are also real; both are the parinama of My shakti. The jivas are eternal and have come into existence from the tatastha-shakti, but the material world, which is born from My bahiranga-shakti, is temporary and subject to destruction even though it is real. The jivas and the universe are transformations of My shakti, which is nondifferent from Me; hence they are simultaneously one with and different from Me. This conception is acintya (inconceivable), because it can be understood only by shastra and can not be experienced by ordinary intelligence. Wherever one experiences both difference and oneness at the same time, the perception of difference is indeed stronger than the perception of oneness. Therefore, I am the Absolute Conscious Entity, different from both the jiva as well as the universe."

9.5

na ca mat-sthani bhutani / pashya me yogam aishvaram
bhuta-bhrin na ca bhuta-stho / mamatma bhuta-bhavanah

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.5 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/5/en>

ca---and; bhutani---the living beings and the elements; (are) na---not; mat-sthani---situated in Me; pashya---behold; me---My; yogam---mystic; aishvaram---opulence; mama---My; atma---self; bhuta-bhrit---is the support; bhuta-bhavanah---and the maintainer of all beings and elements; ca---yet; na bhuta-sthah---I am not situated in those entities and elements.

All that is created does not actually exist in My svarupa. Behold My mystic opulence! As Paramatma I support and maintain all living beings and elements, yet I Myself am not situated in them.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

"Therefore, although all living beings and elements are situated within Me, they are not situated in My svarupa because I am asanga, aloof from them. If you raise the doubt, "This is contrary to Your previous statement (Gita 9.4) that You are all-pervading and the support of the whole universe," then in response I say, "Behold My extraordinary yoga-aishvarya (opulence), which can make the impossible possible. This is simply the effect of My aishvarya only. Behold another wonderful quality of Mine! One who supports the living beings and the elements is bhuta-bhrit, and one who maintains the living beings and the elements is bhuta-bhavana. Although I possess these qualities, I am not bhuta-stha, situated in the created beings and elements. There is no difference between My body and Me. The jiva remains within his body because he becomes attached to it in the course of supporting and maintaining it. Similarly, although I support and maintain the material manifestation, and although I am situated in the illusory cosmic form, I am not in it because I am not attached to it; rather, I am detached."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

"I pervade the whole material universe. All beings and elements are situated within Me, yet they do not exist in My svarupa." To clarify this subject further, Shri Bhagavan tells Arjuna, "Although I am the supporter and maintainer of all beings and elements, I am not situated within them." This principle has also been confirmed in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (1.11.38):

etad ishanam ishasya / prakriti-stho .pi tad-gunaih
na yujyate sadatma-sthair / yatha buddhis tad-ashraya
Ishvara, Shri Krishna, is not affected by the modes of nature although He presides over the material nature. This is a most wonderful characteristic of His.

This act of making the impossible possible is achieved through My yoga-aishvarya.

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura quotes Krishna as saying, "All beings and elements exist in Me alone. Do not conclude from this that all beings exist in My shuddha-svarupa (actual self). Rather, they exist under the influence of My maya-shakti. You, the jiva, will not be able to comprehend this fact by your own limited intelligence. Therefore, understand it to be My yogaai shvarya, and know Me as bhuta-bhrit (the supporter), bhuta- stha (all-pervading), and bhuta-bhavana (the maintainer of all manifestations). Consider My activities to be the functions of My energy. Fix yourself in the conception that there is no difference between Myself and My body, as I am absolute spirit. For this reason, I am actually completely aloof, although I am the cause and basis of the material manifestation. "

9.6

yathakasha-sthito nityam / vayuh sarvatra-go mahan
tatha sarvani bhutani / mat-sthanity upadharaya

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.6 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/6/en>

upadharaya---understand; iti---that; yatha---as; sarvatra-gah--- travelling everywhere; mahan---the mighty; vayuh---wind; nityam---always; akasha-sthitah---rests within space; tatha--- similarly; sarvani---all; bhutani---beings; mat-sthani---are situated in Me.

Just as the all-pervasive and limitless wind rests always in the sky, which is separate from it, in the same way all beings are situated in Me, but I am not in them.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

Asanga means that, "Although all beings and the elements are situated in Me, they are not actually in Me, and although I am in all beings and elements, I am not actually in them." Shri Bhagavan is speaking this shloka beginning with the word yatha to give an example of this. "It is the nature of the wind to be always moving, thus it is said to be sarva-ga, moving everywhere. It is described as mighty (mahan), because its capacity is unlimited. Just as the wind is situated in the sky which is by nature asanga (aloof or unmixed), it is simultaneously not situated in the sky. Also because of the sky's asanga nature, it is not situated in the wind, although it is situated in the wind. Similarly, the panca-mahabhuta (five great elements) such as the sky and air, which exist everywhere, are not in Me, because My nature is asanga. They are not in Me although they are situated in Me. Deliberate on this and try to understand it."

Arjuna may raise the following question: "You said, "Behold My extraordinary yoga-aishvarya!" How is the inconceivable nature of Your yoga-aishvarya proved by this example? In other words, if it can be explained by an example, how is it inconceivable?" In response to this question, Bhagavan says, "The sky, which is inert, is asanga, but among conscious beings it is not possible for anyone other than Myself to be asanga even if they have presided over the manifested creation." How can one who creates remain untouched or aloof from creation? If it is so, it is indeed extraordinary. This proves that He is inconceivable. Here the example of the sky is given so that common people may easily understand the siddhanta. Actually, there is no scope for comparison regarding the Inconceivable Entity.

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

The statement: pashya me yogam aishvaram, "Behold My yoga-aishvarya," has a deep meaning. One can only realise bhagavat-tattva by the mercy of Bhagavan. Without His mercy one cannot have His darshana. One can see Bhagavan only by bhakti, which is the favourable propensity to render service to Him. This has been confirmed in Brahma-samhita (5.38):

premanjana-cchurita-bhakti-vilocanena
santah sadaiva hridayeshu vilokayanti
yam shyamasundaram acintya-guna-svarupam
govindam adi-purusham tam aham bhajami

With the eye of devotion which is anointed with the salve of love, bhaktas always see Shri Govinda within their hearts. Although Shri Bhagavan is all-pervading, He always exists in His human-like feature of Shri Krishna. Just as the sun, though always existing in his individual personal form, pervades the whole universe by it's light, in the same way Bhagavan, by His yogamaya, remains situated in His own personal form and at the same time pervades all moving and non-moving entities throughout the universe.

"O Arjuna, realisation or darshana of Me is never possible by one's gross senses. I am revealing Myself to you only out of mercy. My yogamaya-shakti, which is expert at making the impossible possible, is most wonderful. It is only by the help of this shakti that I remain aloof from all beings, even while sustaining them." Krishna gives this clear explanation to Arjuna out of His mercy.

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura quotes Krishna as saying,
"Baddha-jivas cannot really understand this tattva, so to explain it with a mundane example is not very satisfactory. Yet, in an attempt to make it clearly understandable, I will give you an example. Although you will be unable to understand it fully even after serious contemplation, you will be able to comprehend something. Sky is an all-pervading element and in it the movement of air is multi-directional. The sky is the substructure of everything, yet it is asanga, always aloof from the activities of the wind. In the same way, by My external energy, the entire cosmic manifestation emanates and functions, but like the sky I remain untouched by it."

9.7

sarva-bhutani kaunteya / prakritim yanti mamikam
kalpa-kshaye punas tani / kalpadau visrijamy aham

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.7 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/7/en>

kaunteya---O son of Kunti; kalpa-kshaye---when devastation occurs at the end of a kalpa (a millennium, the life-span of Lord Brahma); sarva-bhutani---all living beings and elements; yanti--- enter; mamikam---My; prakritim---nature; kalpa-adau---at the beginning of a new kalpa; aham---I; punah---again; visrijami---create; tani---them.

O Kaunteya, when the universal devastation occurs, all beings enter My prakriti, and at the beginning of the next kalpa, by My potency, I again create them all with their specific natures.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

The following doubt may be raised: "At present it is known that all visible beings and elements are situated in You, but where do they go during the maha-pralaya (great annihilation)? " Anticipating this question from Arjuna, Shri Bhagavan speaks this shloka beginning with sarva. "They enter My maya- shakti which consists of three gunas. Then, after the annihilation, or in other words at the beginning of creation, I again create all of them with their specific natures."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

Creation, maintenance and annihilation of this material world are carried out entirely by the will of Shri Bhagavan. Here the word kalpa-kshaye means the end of Brahma's life span. This subject was explained earlier. There is a maha-pralaya, great annihilation, at the end of Brahma.s life span. At that time, all the jivas along with their karma-vasana (desires for action) enter Shri Bhagavan's bahiranga-shakti and by His will they are again created by His material nature at the beginning of the next kalpa. They receive bodies in various types of species according to their previous desires. One can refer to Shrimad-Bhagavatam (12.4.5-6) for further information.

9.8

prakritim svam avashtabhya / visrijami punah punah
bhuta-gramam imam kritsnam / avasham prakriter vashat

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.8 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/8/en>

avashtabhya---through the medium; svam---of My own; prakritim--- material nature (consisting of three qualities); visrijami---I create; punah punah---repeatedly; imam---this; kritsnam---entire; avasham---helpless; bhuta-gramam---host of beings; vashat---by the influence; prakriteh---of their individual natures.

Through My prakriti, which consists of the three gunas, I repeatedly create this host of living beings who are bound by their karma according to their individual natures.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

Arjuna may raise the following question: "If you are asanga (completely aloof) and nirvikara (free from any transformation), how do You create?" Anticipating this question, Shri Krishna speaks this shloka beginning with the word prakritim.

"Being situated in My prakriti, and presiding over it, I create a host of jivas who are bound by their past karma according to their nature (svabhava)."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

This material world is a manifestation or transformation of Bhagavan's apara shakti (inferior energy). As far as the jivas are concerned, they are His tatastha-shakti, or a transformation of the jiva-shakti, and are eternal, unlike the material world, which is being constantly recreated. They are simply put into the womb of material nature from where they enter the various species of life according to their previous karma and undergo the result of that karma. Incidentally, it is necessary to say at this point that all species of life such as animals, birds and humans are created at the same time. The modern principle of evolution, introduced by Darwin, has no foundation whatsoever, and is a completely mistaken belief. This is proven by the fact that, even after millions of years no superior form of human being has evolved, nor has any other living entity evolved to surpass the human species. Even after performing His act of creation, Shri Bhagavan remains completely asanga (aloof from all these activities) and nirvikara (without any transformation). The jivas and the material world become manifest only when His energy is transformed.

9.9

na ca mam tani karmani / nibadhnanti dhananjaya
udasina-vad asinam / asaktam teshu karmasu

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.9 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/9/en>

dhananjaya---O Arjuna; ca---since; asinam---I am situated; udasina-vat---neutrally; asaktam---detached; teshu karmasu--- from these actions; tani---these; karmani---activities; na nibadhnanti---do not bind; mam---Me.

O Dhananjaya, since I remain detached like a neutral observer, from acts such as creation, these actions cannot bind Me.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

The following question may be raised: "If You, like the jiva, perform karma (action), why do You not become bound by it?" Shri Bhagavan responds to this question with the present shloka beginning with the words na ca. "It is only attachment to acts, such as creation, which causes bondage, but I am not attached. Being aptakama, My every desire is satisfied." This is why Shri Bhagavan says udasina-vat, "I remain indifferent to all acts such as creation, just as a person who is indifferent to others does not become involved in their miseries and lamentations."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura quotes Krishna as saying, "O Dhananjaya, all these actions cannot bind Me. I always remain detached from such actions, like one who is indifferent, although I am not actually indifferent. Rather, I am always absorbed in My own blissful spiritual activities. Only My external potency, maya, and the tatastha-shakti, both of which indirectly nourish My transcendental bliss, create various kinds of beings. My svarupa is not disturbed by these shaktis. Whatever actions the jivas perform under the influence of My maya indirectly help to enliven My purely divine blissful pastimes. Thus, My attitude toward mundane activities is like that of an unconcerned observer."

9.10

mayadhyakshena prakritih / suyate sa-caracaram
hetunanena kaunteya / jagad viparivarttate

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.10 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/10/en>

kaunteya---O son of Kunti; maya---by My; adhyakshena---superintendence; prakritih---nature; suyate---creates; sa-caraacaram ---the universe with moving and non-moving beings; (it is) anena---by this; hetuna---cause; (that) jagat---the universe; viparivarttate---turns (in its cycles).

O Kaunteya, it is under My direction that the entire cosmic manifestation and all moving and nonmoving beings are brought forth by maya-shakti. For this reason, the material world is created again and again.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

If Arjuna raises the doubt, "I cannot believe that You, being the creator of this cosmic manifestation, are so indifferent. "

Then Shri Bhagavan speaks this shloka beginning with the word mayadhyakshena to remove his doubt. Adhyakshena maya means, "I am just the instrumental cause. It is the material nature which creates the entire moving and non-moving material world. My function is only to preside over it, just as the prakriti (energy or administration) of kings like Ambarisha perform their royal duties. There the king is indifferent, and simply represents the kingdom. Just as subjects will not be able to act without the existence of the royal throne, in the same way the material nature will not be able to perform any function without the elements that are symptomatic of My existence, that is, without My presiding over it."

Hetunanena means "This material world is repeatedly created only because I preside over it."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

Bhagavan is the master of the material modes and the superintendent of maya. He is the instrumental cause of material nature and He also presides over it in acts such as creation. It is only by the inspiration of His glance that material nature can repeatedly create this world of moving and non-moving beings. Material nature receives the power to create from Him alone because it is under His control. Inert matter cannot perform the function of creation by itself. Similarly, iron can burn by contact with fire, but is not independently capable of burning without the potency of fire.

Krishna is therefore the root cause of the material world. Inert nature can be compared to the nipple-like bags hanging from the neck of a goat; they are only for external show, there is no milk to be had from them.

9.11

avajananti mam mudha / manushim tanum ashritam
param bhavam ajananto / mama bhuta-maheshvaram

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.11 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/11/en>

mudhah---fools; avajananti---show disrespect; mam---to Me; ajanantah---not knowing that; mama---My; param---supreme; bhavam---nature; ashritam---which has taken shelter; manushim--- in a human-like; tanum---form; (as) bhuta-maha-ishvaram---the Supreme Lord of all beings.

When I appear in My human-like form, foolish people with mundane intelligence disrespect Me, because they cannot comprehend My nature as the Supreme Lord of all beings.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

Arjuna may raise the following doubt: "It is true that You are none other than Karanodakashayi Mahapurusha whose form is sac-cid-ananda, who pervades unlimited universes and who is famous for creating each universe by Your own nature. Some persons however, upon having darshana of Your human form as the son of Vasudeva, do not accept Your supreme position.. To remove Arjuna.s doubt, Shri Bhagavan speaks this shloka beginning with avajananti mam. "They deride Me only because they do not know the supreme nature of My visible human-like form, whose svarupa is even superior to that of great personalities like Karanodakashayi Vishnu."

"What type of svarupa?" Bhagavan answers, "I am bhutamahe shvaram, the great controller of bhuta (brahma), which is satya-svarupa, the embodiment of truth. In other words, I am parama-satya-svarupa, the embodiment of the highest truth."The Amara-kosha dictionary defines bhuta as a substance which is covered by earth (mukto kshmad avrite bhutam).

The Gopala-tapani shruti says, "Shri Govinda in His sac-cid- ananda-vigraha is sporting in the kunjas of immortal trees in Shri Vrindavana, and I and the Marut devas (devas of the air) satisfy Him with great eulogies." In this connection, Shrimad-Bhagavatam (9.23.20) says: paramatma narakritih. "The sac-cid-ananda nature of My human form is glorified only by My pure bhaktas who are well versed in My tattva, and who know that I pervade the entire universe in this body alone. This was observed by Mother Yashoda in My childhood. "

The words param bhavam also mean supreme existence or the pure transcendental sac-cid-ananda form. In the Amarako sha dictionary the words bhava, svabhava and abhipraya are defined as synonymous. The word parama-bhava (supreme nature) is also described in a more specific way as mama bhuta-maheshvaram. "I am the Supreme Controller and the creator of a host of beings such as Lord Brahma. Unlike the jivas, My body is non-different from Me, Parameshvara. That is, I am indeed that very same brahma. Shri Shukadeva Gosvami, who knows My tattva, states: "He displayed a body that can only be known by the Vedas." (Shrimad-Bhagavatam 3.21.8). Therefore, persons like you, Arjuna, who know My tattva, have faith in this statement."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

Shri Krishna is the origin of all vishnu-tattva. Nirvishesha-brahma is described in the Upanishads as the bodily effulgence of Krishna. Paramatma, who pervades the entire universe, is His partial expansion. Shri Narayana, the Lord of Vaikuntha, is His pastime potency (svamsha-vilasa). Shri Krishna alone is the origin of all avataras, the Controller of all controllers and the ultimate Transcendental Reality. Shri Krishna is the master of all beings, and the only Lord of all the universes. He is omniscient (sarva-jna), omnipotent (sarva-shaktiman) and very compassionate (maha-karunika), and He can do anything simply by willing. Foolish people, however, are disrespectful to Him when they have darshana of His beautiful human-like form. Such foolish people consider the svarupa of Vasudeva-nandana or Yashoda-nandana Krishna to be mundane and mortal, like that of an ordinary human being. Some think that Krishna's body is material and perishable. They imagine an atma to be within His body, and that atma to be Paramatma. Those who think like this are foolish, because shastra declares that Krishna's body is sac-cid-ananda, and that there is no difference between His body and Himself.

This is evident from the following quotations from different shastras:
1) om sac-cid-ananda-rupaya krishnaya (Gopala-tapani Upanishad 1.1) Yes, let us contemplate Shri Krishna, whose form is imbued with eternality, cognisance and bliss.
2) tam ekam govindam sac-cid-ananda-vigraham (shruti) It is He alone, Govinda, who has an eternal, cognisant and blissful form.
3) dvi-bhujam mauna-mudradhyam vana-malinam ishvaram (shruti) The Lord, while wearing a garland of forest flowers, plays His flute, enchantingly forming the mauna-mudra with His hands.
4) ishvarah paramah krishnah sac-cid-ananda-vigrahah (Brahma-samhita 5.1) The Supreme Lord, Ishvara, is Krishna; His form is eternal, all-knowing and blissful.
5) apashyam gopam anipadyamanama (Rig-Veda 1.22, 1.66.31) I saw a boy who appeared in the dynasty of cowherds, and who is never annihilated.
6) gudham param brahma manushya-lingam (Shrimad- Bhagavatam 7.15.75) The Supreme Lord is hidden by His accepting a human-like form.
7) sakshad gudham param brahma manushya-lingam (Shrimad- Bhagavatam 7.15.15) He is directly the supreme brahma, yet He is hidden because He has a human form.
8) yatravatirno bhagavan paramatma narakritih (Shrimad- Bhagavatam 9.23.20) ."whereupon the all-opulent Lord descended in the form of a man.

Shri Krishna Chaitanya Mahaprabhu instructed a resident brahmana of Kashi that Krishna's form and Krishna.s name are non-different. His name, form and nature are all sac-cid- ananda and are one in tattva. There is no difference between His body and His self, His name (nama) and the possessor of His name (nami). Those who think that the sac-cid- ananda form of Krishna is material are offensive. Chaitanyacaritamrita explains that amongst all of Shri Krishna.s pastimes, His nara-lila is topmost. His form in which He dresses as a cowherd boy, carries a flute in His hand, and is a young boy dressed like a dancer, is the most supreme and sweetest form of all. Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura quotes Krishna as saying, "The essence of My statements is that My svarupa is sac-cid- ananda, and that My shakti performs all actions by My mercy, although I am independent from them. It is only by My mercy that I am visible in this mundane world, and this is just an effect of My yogamaya-shakti. I am the complete transcendental reality beyond all mundane rules and, even though I am the personification of the conscious reality (chaitanyasvar upa), I become visible in this material world by manifesting that very same svarupa. But human beings, who are atomic in size, have a tendency to be overawed by something that is immense in size. Such is their conception of the unmanifest state of brahma. This is due to their conditioned intelligence, but that form is not My param bhava (supreme nature). My param bhava is that I am completely alaukika (transcendental). Although My human-like form is of a medium size, by My shakti I am simultaneously all-pervading and smaller than the atom. My svarupa is manifested by My acintya-shakti (yogamaya). Those who are foolish consider that My transcendental sac-cid-ananda-murti to be human, and that I have been forced to accept this material body by the laws of material nature. They are unable to understand that I am the controller of all beings in this very svarupa, this beautiful transcendental human-like form. "Therefore, because they have a misconception about transcendental reality (avidvat-pratiti), they superimpose their limited understanding on Me. However, those who have developed vidvat-pratiti and who have proper access to transcendence can realise My svarupa as the ever-existing sac-cid-ananda-tattva."

9.12
moghasha mogha-karmano / mogha-jnana vicetasah
rakshasim asurin caiva / prakritim mohinim shritah

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.12 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/12/en>

eva mogha-ashah---certainly their hopes go in vain; moghakarm anah---their fruitive work is fruitless; mogha-jnanah---their culture of knowledge is fruitless; vicetasah---those bewildered persons; shritah---take shelter; mohinim---of the illusory; prakritim---nature; ca---and; rakshasim---ignorant; (and) asurim--- demonic views.

The hopes of such foolish people for liberation, fruitful gain and the culture of jnana all go in vain. Thus, with their minds distracted, they adopt the deluded nature of atheists and asuras.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

"What is the destination of those who deride Shri Bhagavan, thinking that He has a human body made of maya?" Anticipating this question from Arjuna, Shri Bhagavan says that even though they are bhaktas, their hopes go in vain. That is, their desires to attain one of the four types of mukti, such as salokya, bear no fruit. If they are karmis, they cannot attain the result of their karma such as Svarga. If they are jnanis, they cannot attain moksha as a result of their jnana. So what do they achieve? In answer to this, Shri Bhagavan speaks the third line of this shloka beginning with rakshasim. "They attain an asurika nature."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

This shloka describes the destination of those who deride the supramundane sac-cid-ananda human-like body of Shri Krishna, as described in the previous shloka. Their minds become distracted and they remain attracted to an asurika and atheistic nature which destroys their discrimination, what to speak of their desires, activities and knowledge which all become useless. Thus they fall from the path leading to the supreme goal. This is explained in the Brihad-vaishnava Tantra: yo vetti bhautikam deham krishnasya paramatmanah sa sarvasmad bahish-karyah shrauta-smarta-vidhanatah Those who consider the body of Shri Krishna to be made of the five material elements are disqualified from performing all types of karma according to the rules of shruti and smriti. It is recommended that if one sees the faces of such sinful people, one should immediately take bath with his clothes on. It is asurika to remain attached to that bewildering nature, full of the characteristics of ignorance such as violence. It destroys their discrimination; thus they go to the hellish planets.

9.13

mahatmanas tu mam partha / daivim prakritim ashritah
bhajanty ananya-manaso / jnatva bhutadim avyayam

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.13 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/13/en>

partha---O son of Pritha; maha-atmanah---the great souls; tu--- however; ashritah---taking shelter; daivim---of the divine; prakritim---nature; jnatva---knowing Me; (to be) avyayam---the imperishable; bhuta-adim---cause of all beings; ananya-manasah--- with undeviating minds; bhajanti---worship; mam---Me.

O Partha, the mahatmas, however, having taken shelter of My divine nature, know Me to be the original and imperishable cause of all beings. They constantly engage in My bhajana with their minds fixed exclusively on Me.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

"Those great souls who have attained greatness by the mercy of My bhakti, even though they are only human beings, and who have taken shelter of daivim prakritim (the transcendental nature), only engage in bhajana to serve Me in My human-like form. Their minds are not attracted by karma, jnana and other desires; therefore, they are ananya manah (exclusively absorbed in Me) and, having received knowledge of My aishvarya such as maya tatam idam sarvam (Gita 9.4), they know Me to be the cause of all beings from lord Brahma down to a blade of grass. They know Me to be avyaya, (eternal and immutable), and My form to be sac-cid- ananda. My bhaktas need this type of knowledge to worship Me and only this much. Following their mood, one should regard ananya-bhakti, which is free from the jnana of tvam padartha, karma and so on, as topmost, as the king of all confidential secrets (raja-guhyam).

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

One may raise the question, "Then who is that person who engages in bhajana to Him, respecting Krishna's sac-cid-ananda form?. Bhagavan answers this with the present shloka. Those who have attained the causeless mercy of a bhakta and Shri Bhagavan take shelter of shuddha-bhakti. Only such mahatmas engage in bhajana to Shri Krishna, who is the embodiment of sac-cid-ananda. Such great personalities are very rare. This principle has been confirmed in Bhagavad-gita (7.19). Such great personalities are endowed with divine natures. Contrary to this, there are others with asurika natures. It is said in the Padma Purana: vishnu-bhaktah smrito daiva asuras tadviparyaya h. "According to smriti shastra, the bhaktas of Vishnu are called devas and those who are averse to Him are called asuras."

9.14

satatam kirttayanto mam / yatantash ca dridha-vratah
namasyantash ca mam bhaktya / nitya-yukta upasate

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.14 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/14/en>

satatam---constantly; kirttayantah---glorifying; mam---Me; ca--- and; yatantah---endeavouring; (with) dridha-vratah---determined vows; ca---and; namasyantah---bowing down; bhaktya---with devotion; mam---before Me; nitya-yuktah---they who are always united (with Me); upasate---worship (Me).

Constantly chanting the glories of My names, qualities, form and pastimes, endeavouring with determined vows, and offering pranamas with devotion, they engage in My worship, remaining always united with Me.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

"You said that they engage in Your bhajana, but what is that bhajana?" In answer to this question, Shri Bhagavan speaks this shloka beginning with the word satatam. .They constantly perform My kirtana in which, unlike karma-yoga, there is no consideration of the purity or impurity of time, place or person. Smriti (Vishnu-dharmottara) says, "For a person who is attached to chanting the name of Shri Hari, there is no rule regarding time or place. What to speak of chanting with a contaminated mouth, there is no restriction to chanting in any impure state." "These great souls are yatantah, which means that they endeavour with steadfast vows. A poor householder, in order to maintain his family with hopes of gaining wealth, may endeavour to do so near a wealthy person. Similarly, My bhaktas develop an attachment to kirtana, etc., in order to obtain bhakti, and endeavour in the assembly of sadhus. And even after attaining bhakti, they practise it again and again, just as one may revise the shastra many times. Those who are steadfast and never break their vow to chant a fixed number of names, who bow down a set number of times, who perform other such services regularly and who fast on ekadashi are called yatnavan or persons of endeavour. They think, "This practice is imperative for me." In the phrase namasyantash ca, the word ca means that all other limbs of bhakti, such as shravanam and pada-sevanam, are also included in this. These great bhaktas are called nityayukt ah, meaning that they desire to obtain My eternal association. The import of the two phrases kirtayanto mam and mam upasate in this shloka is that only My kirtana and other angas (limbs) comprise My upasana (bhakti). Therefore repetition of the word mam is not a defect."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

This shloka explains how the great personalities who were described in the previous shloka worship Shri Krishna. Shrimad- Bhagavatam (6.3.22) states: bhakti-yogo bhagavati / tann ama-grahanadibhih. "They incessantly engage in the kirtana of My nama, rupa, guna and lila." It is stated in the Vaishnavacint amani:

na desha-niyamo rajan / na kala-niyamas tatha
vidyate natra sandeho / vishnor namanu kirtane

This bhakti, in the form of kirtana, does not depend on the purity of time, place, or person. The Skanda Purana states: cakrayudhasya namani sada sarvatra kirtayet. "The name of Shri Hari, who carries a disc in His hand, is to be chanted everywhere at all times." Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu confirms this in Shikshashtakam: kirtaniyah sada harih.

An ordinary person cannot become a mahatma simply by advertising himself or collecting votes. No one can become a mahatma by these processes. In this shloka, Shri Krishna Himself has given the svarupa-lakshana (intrinsic characteristic) of a mahatma. Those who are constantly engaged in hearing, chanting and remembering the supremely pure name, form and pastimes of Shri Krishna, who is the atma of all atmas, are called mahatmas. Others, such as jnanis, yogis and tapasvis who engage in pious activities and those who consider Bhagavan to be nirvishesha (featureless), nirakara (impersonal) and nihshaktika (devoid of potency), are not addressed as mahatma in Bhagavad-gita. Any person in any ashrama, be he a brahmacari, a grihastha or a sannyasi, can become a real mahatma by taking shelter of a bona fide guru and by cultivating bhakti to Shri Krishna.

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura quotes Krishna as saying, "Mahatmas who understand Me properly always glorify (perform kirtana of) My nama, rupa, guna and lila. That is, they follow the nine types of bhakti (navadha bhakti), such as hearing and chanting with determined vows in order to attain eternal service to My sac-cid-ananda Shyamasundara form. They become steady in all activities, whether bodily, mental, social or spiritual, solely to please Me. They surrender to Me by the process of bhakti-yoga even while living in this material world. This ensures that their minds do not become disturbed by materialistic activities."

9.15

jnana-yajnena capy anye / yajanto mam upasate
ekatvena prithaktvena / bahudha vishvato-mukham

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.15 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/15/en>

anye---others; api---however; yajantah---worship; jnanayaj nena---through the culture of knowledge; ca---and; anye--- others; upasate---worship; mam---Me; ekatvena---through the monistic conception; prithaktvena---with a conception of duality; anye---others; bahudha---with the conception of many gods; anye---others; vishvatah-mukham---with the concept of the universal form.

Among those who engage in yajna by the cultivation of knowledge, some worship Me with the knowledge of oneness, some with the knowledge of duality, some through the forms of various devatas, and some worship Me as the universal form. SARARTHA-VARShINI


BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

In this Chapter and in previous chapters only ananyabhaktas have been referred to as mahatmas. It has been shown that such bhaktas are superior to all other types of devotees such as artta (the distressed). Now Shri Bhagavan is speaking about the other three types of bhaktas who were not described earlier, and who fall into a different category. They are ahan- graha upasakas, those who identify themselves with the object of worship; that is, they consider the jivas and Bhagavan to be one. The pratika upasakas worship the devas considering them to be supreme, but in fact those devas are simply vibhutis of the Lord. The vishvarupa upasakas worship the universal or cosmic form of the Lord. None of them are mahatmas because they are unable to perform the sadhana described previously (Gita 9.14).

The three meanings of jnana-yajna are described in the shrutis.

1) "O Deva-purusha, Master of all aishvarya! Whatever You are, I am the same as that, and whatever I am, You are also the same." This is ahan-graha upasana and some jnanis engage in the worship of Parameshvara by this type of yajna. Here, the word ca has been used to mean evam (also) and the word api has been used in the sense of giving up all other processes. The word ekatvena (oneness) means thinking that the worshipper is one with the worshipable. In the Tantra it is said: na devo devam arcayet. "One who is not a devata himself cannot worship a devata." Ahan-graha upasana means to worship Gopala with the feeling, "I am Gopala."

2) Inferior to this type of worship is prithaktvena (worship in duality), in which the worshippers engage in yajna in the form of pratika upasana. Following the statements in the shrutis, they think, "The sun is brahma; this alone is the instruction." "Those who have even less intelligence than these worship My universal form in various ways, considering Me to be the atma of everything." This is the explanation of Shripada Madhusudana Sarasvati. Some worshippers think that the Supreme Lord Vishnu is the sun, and that there is no sun other than Him; that He Himself is Indra, and there is no other Indra; and that He is Soma, and there is no other Soma. This type of worship, in which the vibhutis are seen as being Bhagavan in different forms, is called pratika upasana.

3) To worship all the vibhutis with the knowledge that Vishnu is everything is called vishvarupa-upasana.

Jnana-yajna, therefore, has three divisions. Sometimes, ekatvena (the oneness of the worshipper with the object of worship) and prithaktvena (the worship of Shri Bhagavan.s vibhutis as being different from Bhagavan) are placed in one category because they are almost the same. For example, in ahan-graha upasana is the mentality that "I am Gopala," and on the other hand the feeling that, "I am the servant of Gopala." These two types of feelings are likened to a river that is approaching the ocean. The river is different from the ocean, yet also non-different. The second category is vishvarupa upasana. Jnana-yajna is, therefore, of two types when categorised in this way.

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

The superior and exalted postion of the ananya-bhaktas is apparent when they are compared to those bhaktas such as artta (the distressed). Ananya-bhaktas can be addressed as mahatma. Having stated this, Shri Bhagavan explains three other types of worshippers who are inferior to them. These three types of worshippers are unable to perform the sadhana of the ananya-bhaktas so they worship Shri Bhagavan by the yajna of knowledge endowed with guni-bhuta bhakti (bhakti which is predominated by karma, etc.), and they deliberate on the reality of ekatvena (oneness), prithaktvena (difference, duality) and bahudha or vishvato mukham (the universal form).

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura quotes Krishna as saying, "O Arjuna, superior to those such as the artta-bhaktas are the ananya-bhaktas who are known as mahatmas. I have explained the artta-bhaktas in various ways. Now I will explain the three types of bhaktas who are inferior to them, and whom I have not yet mentioned. Learned scholars call these three types of worshippers ahan-graha upasaka, pratika upasaka, and vishvarupa upasaka. Ahan-graha upasakas are superior to the other two. They identify themselves as being one with Bhagavan. This mentality, or egoism is one type of yajna for worshipping Parameshvara. The ahan-graha upasakas worship brahma while performing this yajna with a conception of oneness. Pratika upasakas are inferior to them. They think of themselves as separate from Bhagavan and they worship the sun and Indra, etc., but without understanding that they are only Shri Bhagavan's vibhutis. Those who are even less intelligent worship Shri Bhagavan in the form of vishvarupa (the universal form).Thus, jnana-yajna is of three types."

9.16

aham kratur aham yajnah / svadhaham aham aushadham
mantro .ham aham evajyam / aham agnir aham hutam

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.16 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/16/en>

pitaham asya jagato / mata dhata pitamahah
vedyam pavitram omkara / rik sama yajur eva ca

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.17 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/17/en>

gatir bhartta prabhuh sakshi / nivasah sharanam suhrit
prabhavah pralayah sthanam / nidhanam bijam avyayam

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.18 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/18/en>

tapamy aham aham varsham / nigrihnamy utsrijami ca
amritan caiva mrityush ca / sad asac caham arjuna

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.19 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/19/en>

aham kratuh.I am the agnishtoma ritual; aham yajnah.I am the smarta-yajna (such as vaishva-deva); aham svadha.I am the shraddha ---(offering) to the forefathers; aham aushadham---I am the medicinal herbs; aham mantrah---I am the mantra; aham eva---I am certainly; ajyam---the ghee; aham agnih---I am the fire; aham hutam---I am the offering in the fire; aham pita---I am the father; mata---the mother; dhata---supporter; pita-mahah---and the grandfather; asya---of this; jagatah---universe; vedyam---I am worthy to be known; pavitram---the purifier; om-karah---I am the syllable om; ca---and; eva---certainly; rik sama yajuh---the Rig, Sama and Yajur Vedas; (I am) gatih---the goal of life; bharta---the sustainer; prabhuh---the master; sakshi---the witness; nivasah--- the abode; sharanam---the shelter; suhrit---the dear friend; prabhavah---the creation; pralayah---the dissolution; sthanam--- the basis; nidhanam---the place of rest; (and) avyayam bijam--- the imperishable seed; aham tapami---I cause heat; aham nigrihnami---I withhold; ca---and; utsrijami---release; varsham--- rain; arjuna---O Arjuna; aham---I am; eva---certainly; amritam--- immortality; ca---and; mrityuh---death; ca---as well as; sat---eternal, subtle spirit; (and) asat---temporary, gross matter.

O Arjuna, I am the Vedic rituals such as agnishtoma, the smarta-yajnas such as vaishva-deva, and I am shraddha, the oblation to the forefathers. I am the potency of the healing herb, the mantra, the ghee, the fire and I am homa or yajna. I am the mother, the father, the maintainer and the grandsire of the universe. I am the object of knowledge and the purifier. I am the syllable om and I am also the Rig, Yajur and Sama Vedas. I am destiny in the form of the fruit of karma, the sustainer, the Lord, the witness, the abode, the refuge and the dearest wellwishing friend. I am the creation, the dissolution. the basis, the resting place and the eternal seed. I give heat and I withhold and release the rain. I am immortality and I am death personified. I am the cause of everything and also the effect; spirit and matter are both in Me.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

"Why do people worship You in various ways?" Anticipating this question, in this and the next three shlokas, Shri Bhagavan is giving a detailed explanation of His nature by which He is everything within the universe. In other words, He is describing His cosmic form. The word kratuh means yajnas such as agnishtoma which are prescribed in the Vedas, as well as yajnas such as vaishva-deva which are described in the smriti-shastra of the smartas. The word aushadham means the potency produced from the aushadhi, herbs which have medicinal benefit. The word pita signifies that because He is the efficient material cause of the universe either individually or collectively, He is therefore the father. The word mata means that, because He holds the universe in His womb, He is the mother. He maintains the universe and nourishes it, therefore He is dhata, the sustainer, and since He is the father of Brahma, who is the creator of this universe, He is the grandfather. The word vedyam means the object of knowledge and pavitram means that which purifies. The word gati means fruit in the sense of result or destiny, either good or bad, of our past and present actions. Bharta means the husband or protector, prabhuh means the controller, sakshi means the witness of auspicious and inauspicious activities, and nivasah means the abode. Sharanam means one who delivers others from calamities and suhrit means one who does welfare work without any motive. Prabhavah means, "Only I perform the actions of creation, destruction and maintenance. " Nidhanam means, "I am the treasure, being endowed with padma, shankha, gada and cakra." The word bija means the cause or seed. However, avyayam means "I am not perishable like seeds of rice. I am imperishable, eternal and unchanging. I provide heat in the summer season in the form of the sun. I award the rains in the rainy season. I am amrita (immortality), mrityu (the cycle of birth and death), sat (subtle substance, or spirit) and asat (gross matter). Knowing Me in this way, they worship Me in My universal form." This is how this shloka relates to the previous one.

9.20

trai-vidya mam soma-pah puta-papa
yajnair ishtva svar-gatim prarthayante
te punyam asadya surendra-lokam
ashnanti divyan divi deva-bhogan

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.20 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/20/en>

trai-vidyah---those conversant with (the karma-kanda portions of) the three Vedas; ishtva---having worshipped; mam---Me; yajnaih---through sacrifices; soma-pah---and drinking soma-rasa; puta-papah---being freed from sinful reaction; prarthayante---they pray; svah-gatim---for the destination of Svarga; asadya---upon achieving; punyam---merit; sura-indra-lokam---and the planet of Indra; te---they; ashnanti---enjoy; divyan---divine; devabhog an---godly delights; divi---in heaven.

Those who are devoted to fruitive activity as described in the three Vedas worship Me by performing yajna. Having become free from sins by drinking the soma juice, which is the remnant of the yajna, they pray for entrance into Svarga. When they attain the planet of Indra by virtue of their pious deeds, they enjoy the celestial pleasures of the devas.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

"In this way, these three types of bhaktas who perform worship attain mukti, knowing only Me to be Parameshvara, but those who are karmis do not attain mukti." To explain this, Shri Bhagavan speaks two consecutive shlokas beginning with the word trai-vidya. "Those who know the science of the three Vedas.Rig, Yajur and Sama.and are devoted to the karma prescribed in them worship Me only indirectly by the performance of yajna. They do not know that devas such as Indra are My form in the absolute sense. Therefore, they worship Me in the form of Indra only, and drink the soma juice, the remnants of the yajna. Those who take this soma juice attain piety and enjoy celestial pleasures."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura quotes Krishna as saying, "Only when there is some scent of bhakti in these three types of worship will the jiva begin worshipping Me as Parameshvara. He will gradually give up the impurities of mixed worship and attain moksha in the form of My shuddha-bhakti. If the worshipper abandons the false conception of oneness with Bhagavan as in the ahan-graha upasana process, he can gradually attain shuddha-bhakti by properly deliberating on bhakti.

The idea in the pratika upasana process that other devas are Bhagavan can also gradually culminate in realisation of My sac-cid-ananda svarupa of Shyamasundara, by deliberating on tattva in the association of sadhus. The unsteady knowledge (worship) of Paramatma in the process of vishvarupa upasana can also be removed by gradually realising that the worship of My svarupa is the most elevated. The worshipper can then concentrate on My human-like sac-cid-ananda feature. But if a person who performs one of these three types of worship persists in his attraction for karma and jnana, which is a symptom of his aversion to Me, he cannot attain the all-auspicious bhakti. Because of their aversion to Me, those who worship oneness (ahan-graha upasaka) gradually fall into the network of illusory mayavada reasoning. The pratika upasakas become bound by the laws of karma prescribed in the Rig, Sama, and Yajur Vedas. Having studied these three types of Vedic knowledge, which give instruction on karma, they become freed from sin by drinking the soma juice. They worship Me by yajna and pray to attain Svarga in the planets of the devas as a result of their pious deeds. Thus they attain the divine pleasures of the devas."

9.21

te tam bhuktva svarga-lokam vishalam
kshine punye martya-lokam vishanti
evam trayi-dharmam anuprapanna
gatagatam kama-kama labhante

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.21 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/21/en>

punye---when (their) pious merit; kshine---is exhausted; te---they; vishanti---enter; martya-lokam---the region of mortals; bhuktva--- having enjoyed; tam---that; vishalam---vast; svarga-lokam--- planet of heaven; evam---thus; kama-kamah---those desiring sense pleasures; anuprapannah---following; trayi-dharmam---the karma-kanda portions of the three Vedas; labhante---achieve; gata-agatam---repeated going and coming (from earth to heaven).

When their pious merit is exhausted, they again return to the mortal world, having enjoyed immense celestial pleasures. In this way, those who desire sense pleasures and who perform fruitive activities as described in the three Vedas receive only repeated birth and death within this material world.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

Gata-agatam means going and coming, or repeated birth and death.

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

Those who desire material pleasures, as described in the previous shloka, and who are averse to Bhagavan again fall into this material world after enjoying celestial pleasures and receive the result of taking birth repeatedly. This is also confirmed in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (3.32.2):

sa capi bhagavad-dharmat / kama-mudhah paran-mukhah
yajate kratubhir devan / pitrimsh ca shraddhayanvitah

With their faith in the path of fruitive activity and being averse to the dharma of the soul, which is bhagavad-aradhana (worship of Bhagavan), such persons are bewildered by material desires and perform various types of yajnas to worship mortal devas and the forefathers.

karma-vallim avalambya tata apadah
kathancin narakad vimuktah punar apy
evam samsaradhvani vartamano nara-lokas
artham upayati evam upari gato 'pi
Shrimad-Bhagavatam 5.14.41

In this way, living beings achieve Svarga by taking refuge in the creeper of fruitive activity. Thus they attain temporary relief from the miseries of hell. When their piety is exhausted, however, they again enter the world of birth and death.

tavat sa modate svarge / yavat punyam samapyate
kshina-punyah pataty arvag / anicchan kala-calitah
Shrimad-Bhagavatam 11.10.26

They enjoy the pleasures of Svarga until their piety has been exhausted. They then reluctantly fall back down being impelled by the power of time.

9.22

ananyash cintayanto mam / ye janah paryupasate
tesham nityabhiyuktanam / yoga-kshemam vahamy aham

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.22 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/22/en>

janah---persons; ye---who; ananyah---exclusively; cintayantah--- contemplate; paryupasate mam---and worship Me by every means; tesham---for them; nitya-abhiyuktanam---who are constantly engaged; aham---I; vahami---carry; (their) yoga---necessities; kshemam---for their well-being.

However, for those who are always absorbed in thoughts of Me, and who worship Me with onepointed devotion by every means, I Myself carry their necessities and preserve what they have.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

"The happiness of My bhaktas is not due to receiving the fruit of karma, rather it is because it is granted by Me. Nityabhiyuktanam refers to those who are always united with Me. The happiness of such panditas who are linked with Me by bhakti is bestowed by Me. Those who are not panditas are bereft of this knowledge of bhakti. Nityabhiyuktanam also means that I grant success in yoga, dhyana and so on to those who always desire union with Me. Kshemam means that even if they are not expecting it, I Myself maintain them and carry their burden." Here Shri Bhagavan has not used the word karomi which means "I do", but He has used the word vahami which means "I carry." This implies, "I personally carry the burden of maintaining their bodies, just as a householder carries the burden of maintaining his wife, son and other family members. Their yoga (progress) and kshema (maintenance) are not a result of the fruit of their karma, unlike others."

"What is the purpose behind You, Parameshvara, who are always indifferent and self-satisfied, carrying their burden?" (This appears to be contradictory because it is the bhakta's duty to serve Parameshvara). As it is said in Gopala-tapani Upanishad (Eastern Division 15), "Bhakti means devotional service to Him, in which one gives up all kinds of designations, be they material or transcendental, and absorbs the mind only in Bhagavan." This is called naishkarmya, freedom from karma and its reactions. "My ananya-bhaktas are nishkama (selfless), and because of this selfless nature I bestow bliss upon them. I am neutral but I give this bliss to My bhaktas because of My affection for them, thus I am called bhakta-vatsala. Therefore, it is incorrect to say that those bhaktas are lacking in love for Me because they give Me the responsibility of their maintenance and nourishment. I willingly accept this responsibility even if they do not completely give it to Me. This responsibility is not a burden for Me, who am capable of creating all the universes merely by My will. Furthermore, because I am attached to My bhaktas, it is a great pleasure to carry their burden, just as it is a pleasure for a man to carry the burden of maintaining a pleasing wife."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

How does Shri Bhagavan carry the yoga-kshema (progress and maintenance) of His bhaktas? In this regard a true story is told.

Once, there was a poor brahmana whose name was Arjuna Mishra. He was a parama-bhakta of Shri Bhagavan. Every morning after performing his bhajana, he spent two hours writing a commentary on Shri Bhagavad-gita and then he would go out to beg for alms. Whatever he received by begging he would give to his wife, who would prepare, cook and offer the food to Shri Bhagavan with great love. She then gave the mahaprasada to her husband. Whatever was left over she would eat with great satisfaction. They were very poor and all their clothes were torn. They only had one dhoti that was suitable to wear whenever they left the house. When the brahmana wore that dhoti to go for alms, his wife covered her body with some torn cloth, and when he returned, she put on that same dhoti to go outside or perform other household duties. They both considered their poverty to be a gift from Shri Bhagavan and were fully satisfied. They always offered whatever alms were collected by Bhagavan's mercy to their ishta-deva, Shri Gopinatha, and later accepted His mahaprasada. This was their constant bhavana (mood). Thus their time passed blissfully and they were not the least disturbed by their situation.

In this way, the brahmana regularly wrote his commentary on Bhagavad-gita. One day, after performing his morning bhajana he sat down to write a commentary on the shloka:

ananyash cintayanto mam / ye janah paryupasate
tesham nityabhiyuktanam / yoga-kshemam vahamy aham
Gita 9.22

Upon reading this, his mind became perplexed with a grave doubt that he was unable to resolve in any way. "Will that Person, Svayam-Bhagavan, who is the only master of the whole universe, Himself carry the yoga-kshema (progress and maintenance) of those who are engaged in His ananya bhajana? No, this cannot be true. If this were so, then why is my situation as it is? I am completely dependent on Him, and with exclusive devotion, have offered everything unto His lotus feet. Why then, do I have to undergo the misery of poverty? Therefore, this statement, nityabhiyuktanam yogak shemam vahamy aham, could not have been spoken by Bhagavan Himself; it must have been interpolated." He tried to resolve this difficulty on the strength of his own intelligence but instead he became more and more perplexed and his doubt gradually increased. Finally, he put three slash marks on this line with his red pen, stopped writing and went out to beg alms.

Now, the most compassionate Bhagavan, who protects the surrendered souls, saw that a doubt had appeared in the mind of His bhakta regarding His words. Taking the form of an extremely beautiful, tender, black-coloured boy, He filled two baskets with ample rice, dal, vegetables, ghee and so on and putting them on either ends of a bamboo stick, He personally carried them on His shoulders to the house of this brahmana.

The door was locked from inside. First He knocked on the door, and then loudly called, "O mother, O mother!" But the poor brahmani was only wearing torn cloth, so how could she come out? Out of shyness, she sat quietly but the knocking and calling out continued. Finding no other alternative, she shyly came out keeping her head lowered and finally opened the door. Carrying that weight, the boy entered the courtyard, placed His load on the floor and stood to one side. Shri Bhagavan, in the guise of that boy, spoke to her as follows, "Mother, Panditji (the brahmana) has sent these supplies. Please take them inside."

Until now, the brahmani had been standing with her face lowered. Upon hearing the sweet words of the boy, she looked up and saw in the courtyard two big baskets filled with foodstuffs. She had never seen so many vegetables and food grains.

Being repeatedly requested by the boy to take them, she carried them to the inner part of the house. While doing so, she constantly gazed upon His beautiful face, and became completely satisfied. "Aho, how beautiful His face is! How can a person of such dark colour have such transcendental beauty?" She had never even imagined such beauty. Awestruck, she stood transfixed. Her eyes then noticed that on the chest of the boy were three bleeding slash marks as if someone had cut it with a sharp weapon. Her heart disturbed, she cried, "O son! Which merciless person has made these cuts on Your chest? Alas! Alas! Even a stone-hearted person would melt at the thought of making cuts on such soft limbs!.

Shri Krishna, in the guise of the boy, said, "Mother, while bringing you these foodstuffs, I was delayed, so your husband himself made these cuts on My chest." Her eyes full of tears, the brahmani cried, "What! He made these cuts on your chest? Just let him come home and I will ask him how he could have done such a merciless thing! My son, don't feel distressed. Stay for some time. I will prepare this food and You also can accept the prasada of Thakurji." Seating the boy in the courtyard, the brahmani went to the kitchen and started to prepare an offering. Krishna then thought, "The purpose for which I Myself carried these foodstuffs has been completed. Now, when the brahmana returns to his house, he will immediately discover the authenticity of My words, and he will never doubt them again." In this way, having made arrangements to dispel the doubts of His bhakta, Krishna disappeared.

That day, despite great effort, the brahmana was unable to collect any alms. Losing all hope, he returned home, thinking that his inability to collect anything was the will of Thakurji. He knocked on the back door and his wife opened it. When he saw that she was busy cooking, he inquired, "How is it that you are cooking when I received no alms today? What can you cook with?"

"Why? Some time back you sent so much foodstuff in the hands of that boy that it will take six months for both of us to finish it. Why are you asking me, What will you cook?."

She was a little surprised. "And your heart is like stone. This I did not know before. That boy had three red marks on His chest. How could you slash the tender body of that boy? Have you no mercy?"

The brahmana, completely amazed, asked her to explain. "I didn't send anything home nor did I beat a boy. I do not understand what you are talking about."

After hearing the statements of her husband, she showed him the rice, dal, flour and other things, but when she entered the courtyard to show him the boy and His cuts, the boy was not there. She began to search for Him everywhere. Where had He gone? The outside gate was closed as before. They both looked at each other in surprise. The brahmana now began to understand the whole situation and tears flowed continuously from his eyes. After washing his hands and feet he entered the Deity room and, to completely dispel his doubt, he opened his Bhagavad-gita. That morning he had made three slash marks with his red ink on the line: nityabhiyuktanam yoga-kshemam vahamy aham, but now these three marks were gone. Overwhelmed with happiness, he came out of the Deity room crying. "My dear, you are so fortunate! Today you have directly seen Shri Gopinatha! And all these foodstuffs were brought personally by Him! How could I possibly have brought so much stock? This morning, while writing my commentary on the Bhagavad-gita, I doubted the statements of Bhagavan and slashed those words with three lines of red ink. That is why the tender chest of our Thakurji, Gopinatha, was marked with cuts. He is supremely compassionate. He has taken so much trouble to prove the authenticity of His statements and to remove the doubts of an atheist like me."

Then, his throat choked up and he was unable to speak. Overwhelmed with love, he cried out, "Ha Gopinatha! Ha Gopinatha!" and fell to the ground. Standing in front of Shri Gopinatha, the eyes of his wife, who was struck dumb, filled with tears. After some time the brahmana returned to consciousness and, after taking his bath, performed his daily duties. He offered the preparations to Shri Gopinatha that his wife had prepared and, with great love, they both accepted His remnants. He continued writing the commentary on Gita every day, and his life became full of love.

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura quotes Krishna as saying, "You should not think that these three types of upasakas (worshippers) who have fruitive desires attain happiness and that My bhaktas suffer. My bhaktas think of Me only, without deviation. For the maintenance of their bodies they accept anything that is favourable to My bhakti and reject all that is unfavourable. In this way, they are nitya-abhiyukta, or ever-united with Me by devotional love. Free from selfish desires, they offer everything to Me only. I alone provide all their wealth and any of their other requirements, and thus I maintain them. The meaning is that, from an external point of view, there may appear to be a similarity between materially-motivated pratika upasakas and My bhaktas who only accept that which is favourable to My service. However, there is a big difference between the two. I carry the yoga (progress) and kshema (maintenance) of My bhaktas even if they have no mundane desires. The special benefit My bhaktas receive is that by My mercy they enjoy all sense objects in a dispassionate manner and finally they attain eternal bliss. However, the pratika upasakas again return to the field of karma after enjoying sense pleasure. They do not attain eternal bliss. I am indifferent to all mundane occurences, but out of affection for My bhaktas, I feel delight to help them in every respect. In My doing this, there is no offence at all on the part of My bhaktas, because they do not pray to Me for anything except My favour. I Myself personally supply their requirements."

9.23

ye 'py anya-devata-bhakta / yajante shraddhayanvitah
te 'pi mam eva kaunteya / yajanty avidhi-purvakam

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.23 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/23/en>

kaunteya---O son of Kunti; api---although; te bhaktah---those bhaktas; ye---who; yajante---worship; anya-devata---other devatas; anvitah shraddhaya---with faith; eva---certainly; api---also; yajanti---worship; mam---Me; (but) avidhi-purvakam---in a way contrary to the injunctions of shastra

O Kaunteya, those who worship other devatas with faith actually worship Me alone, but in a way that is unauthorised.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

The following doubt may be raised: "In accordance with the shloka of Bhagavad-gita 9.15, jnana-yajnena capy anye, You said that worship of You is of three types. The statement, bahudha vishvato-mukham, explains the third type, worship of Your universal form. You revealed the nature of that form by statements such as, "I am yajna, I am the Vedic ritual, etc." (Gita 9.16-19). No devata exists independently from You; such is the nature of the universal form. It can be concluded from this that those who worship devatas such as Indra are, in fact, worshipping You, so why will they not be liberated? Furthermore, You have said that those who have material desires become entangled in the cycle of birth and death (Gita 9.21) and attain perishable results. Why is this so?" In response, Shri Bhagavan says, "It is true that they worship Me, but they do so without following the prescribed rules to attain Me. They therefore remain in the material world."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

The following point may be raised: "The devatas are Bhagavan's vibhuti-svarupa (forms of opulence) and the limbs of His body. It does not matter how those who worship the devatas perform their worship, ultimately it reaches Bhagavan. Those who worship the devas attain the planets of those particular devas and, after enjoying the perishable fruits there, they return to this earthly plane. The unalloyed worshippers of Shri Bhagavan, however, do not return to this material world after attaining seva to Shri Bhagavan in His dhama, so if both types of worship are meant for Bhagavan, why do their end results differ?"

In response to this, Shri Krishna is explaining to Arjuna, "The devatas are not separate from Me nor are they controllers independent of Me. The worship of those who consider them as such is unauthorised."

This subject is also clearly explained in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (4.31.14):

yatha taror mula-nishecanena
tripyanti tat-skandha-bhujopashakhah
pranopaharac ca yathendriyanam
tathaiva sarvarhanam acyutejya

By properly watering the root of a tree, it's trunk, branches, twigs, leaves, flowers and so forth all become nourished, just as by eating food the life air and the senses become nourished. In the same way, by worshipping Bhagavan Acyuta everyone, including all the devas, are worshipped.

The essence of Shrila Vishvanatha Cakravarti Thakura's commentary on this shloka is that, by pouring water on the root of a tree, its branches and sub-branches become nourished, but the same result is not achieved by pouring water on it's leaves, branches, fruits and flowers. Somebody may say that there is no harm in giving water to the branches as well as to the root of a tree; rather there is some benefit. Therefore, if one worships the devatas along with worshipping Shri Krishna, then what is the harm? In response to this another example is given. The life air is sustained by supplying food to the stomach; thus all the body's organs and senses become nourished. However, if one gives food separately to the ears, eyes and nose, then one will become deaf and blind and ultimately one will die. In the same way, by worshipping the various devatas, considering them independent gods, one will only attain adverse results. The authorised process, therefore, is to exclusively worship Shri Bhagavan. Moreover, Shrimad-Bhagavatam (10.40.9-10) says:

sarva eva yajanti tvam / sarva-deva-mayeshvaram
ye 'py anya-devata-bhakta / yady apy anya-dhiyah prabho
yathadri-prabhava nadyah / parjanyapuritah prabho
vishanti sarvatah sindhum / tadvat tvam gatayo 'ntatah

When reading these shlokas, most people will understand them to mean, "Just as rivers flowing from the mountains become filled with rain water, divide into various branches and enter the one ocean from various directions, in the same way, the worship performed by those on various paths ultimately culminates in worship of Shri Bhagavan alone. Subsequently, by worshipping other devas one will also receive the result of worshipping Shri Krishna." However this understanding is not correct. The essence of Shrila Vishvanatha Cakravarti Thakura.s commentary on the above two shlokas is as follows: "Karmis, yogis and others actually worship Me only because I alone am the embodiment of all the devas and the Supreme Controller of all controllers. A person who thinks, "I am worshipping Shiva, I am worshipping Surya, I am worshipping Ganesha," considering himself to be devoted to them, actually only worships Me. However, if it is said that in this way they worship Me alone and as a result will surely attain Me, it is not so. The worship performed by them certainly comes to Me, but the worshippers do not. The rivers flowing from the mountains become full of rain water. The clouds pour forth water all over the mountains and eventually this water takes the form of rivers. All the rivers, flowing their independent courses through different places, finally enter the ocean. The rivers coming from the mountains enter the ocean, but their source, the mountain, does not. In the same way, worship performed by persons practising various processes comes to Me alone. However, their source, the worshipper, does not." Here, Shri Bhagavan is compared to the ocean, the Vedas to the clouds, the various types of processes of worship to the water, the worshippers to the mountain and the various devatas to the different places. Just as rivers pass through various lands and enter the ocean, the worship of various devatas comes to Shri Vishnu and, just as the mountain does not reach the ocean, the worshipper of the devas does not reach Vishnu.

Ocean water evaporates to form rainclouds over the mountains. Upon falling, that same water gathers as a river and passes through different lands. It is known by different names and finally it reaches the ocean. In the same way, the different types of worship as described in the shrutis originally came from Bhagavan Shri Krishna. They are performed by various qualified persons to different devas and they are known by the names of those various types of worship. Their worship finally comes to Shri Vishnu through the medium of the devas. Through his worship a person only attains his own worshipable deva, a temporary position. He does not attain eternal seva in the eternal dhama of Shri Krishna.

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura quotes Krishna as saying, "In reality, I, the embodiment of sac-cid-ananda, am the only Parameshvara, Supreme Controller. There is no deva independent of Me. In My own svarupa, I am the transcendental saccid- ananda reality, eternally beyond the material creation. Many persons worship devas, such as Surya. In other words, conditioned human beings in the material world give honour to the majestic feature of My maya-shakti in the form of various devatas and worship them. But by proper deliberation it can be understood that My vibhutis, the devas, are simply My guna-avataras. Those who worship these devas knowing their actual position and the reality of My svarupa, consider them to be My guna-avataras. In this way, their worship is authorised and approved of as the progressive path. But those who worship the devas, thinking them to be eternal and independent of Me, worship in an unauthorised way which does not follow the prescribed rules, and so they do not achieve eternal results."

9.24

aham hi sarva-yajnanam / bhokta ca prabhur eva ca
na tu mam abhijananti / tattvenatash cyavanti te

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.24 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/24/en>

aham---I (am); hi---certainly; bhokta---the enjoyer; ca---and; eva---indeed; prabhuh---the master; sarva-yajnanam---of all sacrifices; tu---but; te---they; na abhijananti---do not recognise; mam---Me; tattvena---as I am, in My svarupa; atah---therefore; cyavanti---they fall down (they wander in samsara).

I am the only master and enjoyer of all yajnas, but those who do not recognise My svarupa repeatedly wander in the cycle of birth and death.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

"What is meant by the phrase "without the prescribed rules?" In response to this question, Shri Bhagavan speaks this shloka beginning with aham hi. "In the form of various devas I am the only enjoyer; I am the Lord and master and I am the giver of results. Those who are pratika upasakas, however, do not know My tattva. For example, they think that by worshipping Surya, whom they see as Parameshvara, the Supreme Controller, Surya will be pleased with them and fulfil their desired results. They cannot understand with their intelligence that Parameshvara, Shri Narayana, has become Surya, and it is Shri Narayana Himself who gives them such faith. Indeed, it is He who bestows the results of Surya worship. Hence, it is because of a lack of tattva-jnana of Me that they fall down. Those who understand that it is Shri Narayana only who is worshipped in the form of Surya and the other devas, and who worship Me being conscious of My universal existence, become liberated. Therefore, it is imperative for those who worship My vibhutis, such as Surya deva, to know that they are actually My vibhutis. They are not to be worshipped independently of Me." This is explained here.

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

"Why is the worship of various devas improper? What is the result of that unauthorised worship?. This is being explained in the present shloka. "In the form of devas such as Indra, I alone am the enjoyer of all yajnas. I am the master, maintainer, controller and bestower of the results of them all. Worshippers of the devas do not know that the devas are My vibhutis; hence, they worship them with faith considering them to be independent of Me and the bestowers of the results of their activities. Because they are unaware of My tattva, they do not have faith in Me; therefore, this type of worship is unauthorised. As a result of such unauthorised worship, they fall away from the truth and remain entangled in the cycle of birth and death.

"However, by worshipping devas such as Surya, considering them to be My vibhuti, they gradually ascend the progressive path and, by the mercy of My bhaktas who know My tattva, they come to understand the science of My svarupa. Thus, their intelligence becomes exclusively fixed on Me, Krishna, whose svarupa is sac-cid-ananda."

This siddhanta is also verified in the shrutis:,BR> narayanad brahma jayate
narayanad indro jayate
narayanad dvadashaditya rudra
sarva-devata sarva rishayah
sarvani bhutani narayanad eva
samutpadyate narayane pratiyante

Brahma is born from Shri Narayana, Indra is born from Shri Narayana, Shiva is born from Shri Narayana, all the devatas and all living entities are also born from Shri Narayana. When their universal duties are complete and they die, all will again merge into Shri Narayana.

The smritis have also established the same conclusion:

brahma shambhus tathaivarkah candramash ca shatakratuh
evam adyas tathaivanye yukta vaishnava-tejasa
jagat tu viyujyante ca tejasa karyavasane
vitejasash ca te sarve pancatvam upyanti te

Brahma, Shiva, as well as the sun god, the moon god, Indradeva and other powerful personalities empowered by Shri Vishnu, are forced to give up all those powers when they die.

This conclusion is also seen in other Upanishads. The above statements from shruti and smriti indicate a difference between the devas and Shri Vishnu, who is the Supreme Controller (sarveshvareshvara). The supremacy of Shri Vishnu over other devas is established in shruti and smriti, yet somewhere in them it is said that a particular deva is equal to Shri Vishnu. This statement is made either because the influence of a particular deva is under the control of Shri Vishnu, or because the deva is very dear to Him.

If one concludes from this that it is proper to worship all devas, considering them to be Narayana, then it is to be understood that everyone is generated from Narayana, by Him they exist and in Him they are annihilated or dissolved. None of them are Narayana, nor can they ever become Narayana. It has been stated in shastra that it is a grievous offence to equate the devas or jivas with Shri Bhagavan. Such offenders are called pashandis (atheists).

yas tu narayanam devam / brahma-rudradi-daivataih
samatvenaiva viksheta / sa pashandi bhaved dhruvam
Padma Purana

Just as it is improper to worship the devatas with the understanding that they are independent lords, it is also atheistic to equate the devas (jivas) with Lord Narayana.

Therefore, it is prescribed that the vishvarupa upasakas (worshippers of the universal form) should worship the devas as the vibhuti of Shri Narayana. In this regard, shastra makes two types of statements. It is said in Narada-pancaratra:

antaryami-bhagavad-drishtyaiva sarv-aradhanam vihitam.

"All are to be worshipped with the vision that Antaryami, the all-pervading Lord, is dwelling within them."

And the Vishnu-yamala states:
vishnu-padodakenaiva pitrinam tarpana kriya
vishnor niveditannena yashtavyam
devatantaram adi-prakarena vihitam iti

It is with the foot water of Shri Vishnu that one should perform activities such as offering oblations to the forefathers, and it is with the remnants of Shri Vishnu's foodstuffs that one should please the devas.

9.25

yanti deva-vrata devan / pitrin yanti pitri-vratah
bhutani yanti bhutejya / yanti mad-yajino 'pi mam

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.25 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/25/en>

deva-vratah---those devoted to the devas; yanti---go; devan---to the devas; pitri-vratah---those devoted to the forefathers; yanti--- go; pitrin---to the forefathers; bhuta-ijyah---the worshippers of the spirits; yanti---go; bhutani---to the spirits; api---and; maty ajinah---My worshippers; yanti---go; mam---to Me.

Those who worship the devatas go to the planets of the devatas, those who worship the forefathers go to the planets of the forefathers, those who worship the spirits go to the planets of the spirits, but those who worship Me will surely come to Me.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

Various rules and regulations have been prescribed for the worship of the different devatas, and the Vaishnavas worship Vishnu by a similar process, according to the injunctions of shastra. One may question, "What is the defect in this deva worship?" To clear up this doubt, Shri Bhagavan says,"It is true; they worship the devas according to the rules for their worship. As a result, such devata-bhaktas achieve those devatas. This is the principle." To explain this point, Bhagavan speaks this shloka beginning with the words yanti deva. "If those devas themselves are perishable, how can their bhaktas become imperishable? But I am imperishable and eternal, therefore, My bhaktas are also imperishable and eternal."

Shrimad-Bhagavatam (10.3.25) also verifies this point: bhavan ekah shishyate 'shesha-samjnah. "After the devastation only You remain, therefore You are called Ananta." Moreover, the shrutis state: eko narayana evasin na brahma na ca shankarah. "In the beginning there was only Narayana, not Brahma or Shiva."

Also in the Gopala-tapani Upanishad it is said: pararddhante so "budhyata gopa-rupa me purastad avirbabhuva" .At the end of the first half of Brahma's life, he understood that I had appeared before him in the form of a cowherd boy."

The shrutis also state: na cyavante ca mad-bhakta mahatyam pralayad api. "My bhaktas continue to exist even at the time of the great dissolution, that is, they do not take birth again."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

Here, Shri Bhagavan is showing the difference between those who worship the devatas and those who worship Him (His bhaktas). He is also showing the difference in the results attained by both. Some may say, "Just as the Vaishnavas worship Vishnu according to the process described in shastra, we are worshipping the devatas according to the rules of shastra. How, then, is our worship considered incorrect?"

In answer to this Bhagavan says, "According to shastra, a person will only have realisation to the extent that the personality whom he worships has realisation. This is just. The worshippers of the devas therefore, attain the planets of the devas. Because both the devas and their planets are perishable, their worshippers achieve perishable results. On the contrary, both My dhama and I Myself are sac-cid-ananda, eternal, cognisant and blissful; therefore, those who worship Me achieve blissful service to Me in My eternal dhama. It is also said in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (1.2.27): sama-shila bhajanti, that those who worship the devas (such as Indra) perform yajnas such as darsha-paurnamasya-yajna that are in sattvagu na. Those who worship the forefathers do so by shraddha and other ceremonies, which are in rajo-guna, and those who worship spirits, yakshas (ghosts), rakshasas and vinayakas (elements which create obstacles for others) worship by the process of bali or offerings, which is in tamo-guna. My bhaktas, who are nirguna, worship Me with devotion using natural and easily available objects."

Someone may say, "Those who worship the devas also have faith in You, because the sarva-deva-puja (worship of all the devas) also includes the worship of Narayana." Bhagavan says in response, "The purpose of worshipping Narayana in sarvadeva- puja, is simply so that the worshippers can perfect their worship. Factually, they have no faith in Narayana. Those who worship the devas think as follows: "I am a worshipper of Indra and other devas. They are my worshipable gods and they themselves will fulfil my desires, being satisfied with my worship." Contrary to this, My bhaktas think, "I am a worshipper of Shri Vasudeva who is the omnipotent Supreme Controller. He alone is my worshipable Lord, and only for His pleasure am I worshipping Him with various offerings according to His liking. Being pleased, He will fulfil my desires. " Externally, both types of worship appear to be equal, but, because those who worship the devas are averse to My bhakti, they attain only limited enjoyment on the planets of those devas. After enjoying there, they again fall to this earthly plane of existence. My ananya-bhaktas, however, attain service to My sac-cid-ananda form in My eternal dhama and do not return to this material world again. They remain absorbed in My loving pastimes, experiencing unlimited happiness in My association."

9.26

patram pushpam phalam toyam / yo me bhaktya prayacchati
tad aham bhakty-upahritam / ashnami prayatatmanah

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.26 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/26/en>

yah---whoever; prayata-atmanah---having a devoted nature; prayacchati---freely offers (without a desire for personal reward); me---to Me; patram---a leaf; pushpam---a flower; phalam---a fruit; toyam---or water; bhaktya---with devotion; tat---that very thing; bhakti-upahritam---served with devotion; aham---I ; ashnami---accept.

If any pure-hearted bhakta offers Me a leaf, a flower, fruit or water with love and devotion, I will surely accept that gift.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

"There is often much misery in deva worship, but such pain does not exist in the performance of bhakti to Me, and it can also be performed with ease." Shri Bhagavan speaks this shloka beginning with the word patram to explain this point. It is described here that it is the bhakti of the devotee which causes Bhagavan to accept his offerings. The word bhaktya has been used in the second line and also again in the third line in the word bhakty-upahritam. Thus there is repetition. According to the rules of Sanskrit grammar, the word bhaktya in the third case implies those who are endowed with bhakti, that is, "My bhaktas." So it emphasises, "If someone other than My bhakta offers Me fruits or flowers with superficial devotion, I do not accept it, but I accept (ashnami) whatever My bhaktas give Me, be it even a leaf. In other words, I fully enjoy that which is offered to Me with bhakti, but I do not enjoy the offering of someone who has been forced to do it. But if the body of My bhakta is impure, I do not accept his offering. " Therefore, Bhagavan says prayatatmanah, meaning he whose body is pure. From this statement it is concluded that a woman is forbidden to make an offering during her monthly menstrual cycle. Another meaning of the word prayatatmanah is, "I accept the offerings of those whose hearts are pure. Other than My bhaktas, no one's heart is pure."

In Shrimad-Bhagavatam (2.8.6) Parikshit Maharaja says, "Those who are pure-hearted never give up the lotus feet of Shri Krishna." The symptom of a person who has a pure heart is that he is unable to give up service to the lotus feet of Bhagavan. Therefore, if such a bhakta is sometimes seen to possess lust or anger, it should be understood that he cannot do any harm to others. He is likened to a snake whose poisonous fangs have been removed.

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

Having explained the imperishable and unlimited nature of the result of bhagavad-bhajana, Bhagavan is now explaining the quality of bhagavad-bhajana, which is easy to perform. When some easily attainable object such as a leaf, flower, fruit, or water is offered to Bhagavan with bhakti, then He accepts it thoroughly, although He is endowed with unlimited opulence and is perfectly satisfied. He becomes hungry and thirsty because of His bhakta's love for Him and, absorbed in a mood of bhakti, He eats that offering out of prema. At the house of bhakta Vidura, Shri Krishna, with great prema, even ate banana peels from the hands of Vidura's wife. While eating the dry rice that His dear friend Sudama Vipra brought and offered with prema, Shri Krishna said:

patram pushpam phalam toyam / yo me bhaktya prayacchati
tad aham bhakty-upahritam / ashnami prayatatmanah
Shrimad-Bhagavatam 10.81.4

The preparation may be delicious or not, but if it is offered with love and a feeling that it is very delicious, it becomes most delicious to Me. At that time, I give up all other thoughts and relish it. Even if such a fruit or flower has no taste or fragrance, I accept it, being captivated by My bhakta's prema.

One may ask if Krishna accepts that article which is offered to Him with bhakti by those who worship the devas. In response, He says,"No. I only accept whatever My bhaktas give Me, not items offered by others."

The ritvik priests in the sacrifice of King Nabhi spoke to Shri Bhagavan, who appeared there:

parijananuraga-viracita-shabala-samshabda-salilasita-
kisalaya-tulasika-durvankurair api sambhritaya
saparyaya kila parama paritushyasi
Shrimad-Bhagavatam 5.3.6

You certainly become especially pleased by the worship offered by Your bhaktas who are full of anuraga for You, who offer prayers with choked voices and who perform puja to You with water, tulasi leaves and sprouting durva grass.

A similar statement from Gautamiya-tantra in Hari-bhaktivil asa states:

tulasi-dala-matrena jalasya culukena va
vikriinite svam atmanam bhaktebhyo bhakta-vatsalah
Bhagavan, who is bhakta-vatsala, completely sells Himself to those bhaktas who, with love and devotion, offer Him a tulasi leaf and a palmful of water.

While eating a morsel of dry rice from the begging bag of the bhakta, Shuklambara Brahmacari, Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu said:

prabhu bale tora khudkana mui khaum
abhaktera amrita ulati na caum
O Shuklambara, I am accepting this dry rice from you, but I do not even look at ambrosial food that is offered by a non-devotee. In Shrimad-Bhagavatam (4.31.21), Devarishi Narada also told the Pracetas: na bhajati kumanishinam sa ijya. "Shri Hari never accepts the service of ill-minded people who, intoxicated by their scholarship, wealth or high birth, disrespect His bhaktas who perform ananya seva to Him."

Shri Krishna personally gave a similar instruction to Uddhava: "Even the gifts given to Me in profusion by non-devotees do not satisfy Me."Furthermore, to clarify this siddhanta, the Lord told Sudama:

anv apy upahritam bhaktaih / premna bhury eva me bhavet
bhury apy abhaktopahritam / na me toshaya kalpate
Shrimad-Bhagavatam 10.81.3

If My bhakta gives Me the smallest offering, I consider it extremely great, but if non-devotees give Me elaborate offerings, they cannot satisfy Me.

Here, the word prayatatma means one who has purified his heart by bhakti. Shri Bhagavan eats the foodstuffs offered with priti by such pure-hearted bhaktas, but He does not eat foodstuffs given by others. Prahlada Maharaja has also made a similar statement: iti pumsarpita vishnor arpitaiva sati yadi kriyate. "The performance of hearing, chanting and so on is shuddha-bhakti only if a person has fully surrendered himself at the lotus feet of Bhagavan, not otherwise."

The purport is that only when the limbs of bhakti are performed with complete surrender can the heart become purified. Shri Bhagavan lovingly accepts only the offerings of such bhaktas.

9.27

yat karoshi yad ashnasi / yaj juhoshi dadasi yat
yat tapasyasi kaunteya / tat kurushva mad-arpanam

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.27 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/27/en>

kaunteya---O son of Kunti; yat---whatever; karoshi---undertakings you make; yat---whatever; ashnasi---you eat; yat---whatever; juhoshi---you sacrifice; yat---whatever; dadasi---you give in charity; yat---whatever; tapasyasi---austerities you perform; kurushva--- you must do; tat---that; mat-arpanam---as an offering to Me.

O Kaunteya, whatever activities you perform, whatever you eat, whatever you sacrifice and give in charity and whatever austerities you perform, offer them all to Me.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

Arjuna may ask the following question: "Up until now, You have explained various types of bhakti from the shloka: artto jijnasur artharthi jnani (Gita 7.16). Which one of them should I follow?"

To remove Arjuna's doubt, Shri Bhagavan says, "O Arjuna, at present you are unable to give up karma, jnana and so on, and therefore you do not have the adhikara to perform the topmost bhakti, namely kevala or ananya-bhakti. And you do not need to perform the inferior sakama-bhakti because your adhikara is higher than that. Therefore, you should perform nishkama-karma-jnana-mishra pradhani-bhuta bhakti, or bhakti (which is predominating) mixed with nishkama-karma and jnana." For this reason, Shri Bhagavan is speaking this shloka beginning with the words yat karoshi and also the next shloka. .Whatever mundane or Vedic activities you perform as normal routine, whatever food or water you take daily, and what- ever austerities you may perform, you should maintain the understanding that all of them can be offered to Me." This, however, is neither nishkama-karma-yoga nor bhakti-yoga.

Those who are devoted to nishkama-karma-yoga offer to Bhagavan only those actions prescribed in shastra, not the normal activities of day-to-day life. This is more common. But bhaktas offer every function of the senses along with their soul, mind and life air unto their worshipable Lord. As it is said in a description of bhakti in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (1.2.36): "Whatever activities a bhakta performs with his body, speech, mind, senses, intelligence and atma, or by dint of his own nature, are all offered to the transcendental Shri Narayana." The following question may be raised: If juhoshi (the performance of yajna) is the same as arcana (a limb of bhakti), which is performed for the purpose of satisfying Shri Vishnu, and if tapasya is to perform the ekadashi fast, then why are they not considered ananya-bhakti? In response Bhagavan says, "This is all right, but actions in ananya-bhakti are not offered to Bhagavan after they have been performed; rather, a person first offers them to Him and then performs the act." As Prahlada Maharaja said:

shravanam kirtanam vishnoh / smaranam pada-sevanam
arcanam vandanam dasyam / sakhyam atma-nivedanam
iti pumsarpita vishnau / bhaktish cen nava-lakshana
kriyeta bhagavaty addha / tan manye 'dhitam uttamam
Shrimad-Bhagavatam 7.5.23-24

Here it is evident that bhakti is performed while first offering these activities to Him, not that the activities are offered after they are performed. In his explanation of this shloka, Shrila Shridhara Svamipada says that bhakti to Vishnu is performed while offering these activities to Him, not that the acts are offered after they have been performed. Therefore, the present Gita shloka does not culminate in kevala-bhakti.

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

For those who are unable to take shelter of the most superior ananya-bhakti, as described by Bhagavan, and also for those who do not have a taste for performing a lower class of bhakti, Shri Bhagavan is instructing His dear friend Arjuna, whom He is using as an instrument to teach humanity, to adopt nishkama-karma-jnana-mishra pradhani-bhuta bhakti, in which all actions are offered to Him.

When Krishna says, "Whatever actions you perform, be they laukika (mundane) or Vedic, offer them to Me," a person should not wrongly think that he can perform any activity and eat and drink whatever he likes without there being any defect, as long as it is offered to Bhagavan. Just because he feels obliged to offer all actions unto the lotus feet of Bhagavan, does not mean that they will be successful. Nor does it mean that an act prescribed in the Vedas, to whichever deva or with whatever desire, will in the end be offered merely by saying the mantra, shri krishnaya samarpanam astu, like the smartas who are engaged in mundane activities. For this reason, all commentators on this shloka like Shrila Shridhara Svami have explained the deep meaning: one should act in such a way that all of his activities are offered directly to Shri Bhagavan. In other words, only those actions which are performed for His pleasure should be offered. In Shrimad- Bhagavatam (1.5.36) Devarishi Narada also says: kurvana yatra karmani bhagavac-chikshaya. "The sharanagata-bhaktas, who perform pleasing acts for Bhagavan, offer those acts solely to Him."

While commenting on this shloka, Shri Vishvanatha Cakravarti Thakura shows the difference between the activities of a karmi and those of a bhakta. "A karmi only offers Bhagavan the activities that are in accordance with Vedic injunction so that his karma will not be fruitless. Bhaktas, however, perform all their activities, whether laukika, Vedic, or related to the body, with the feeling that "Bhagavan is my master, and it is for His pleasure that I am offering everything unto His feet." This is the great difference between the two."

This conclusion has also been confirmed in Shrimad- Bhagavatam (11.2.36) in the dialogue of the Navayogendras:

kayena vaca manasendriyair va
buddhyatmana vanusrita-svabhavat
karoti yad yat sakalam parasmai
narayanayeti samarpayet tat

In accordance with the particular nature that one has acquired in conditioned life, whatever one does with body, words, mind, senses, intelligence or purified consciousness, one should offer to the Supreme, thinking that this is for the pleasure of Shri Narayana.

While commenting on this shloka, Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Prabhupada writes: "The activities of a bhakta are performed with body, mind, speech, intelligence, false ego, heart and all the senses, but they should not be compared to the dharmika acts of karmis which are performed for their own enjoyment. As a result of offering one's actions to Krishna as described above, one's aversion towards Him is gradually removed. Jivas who are situated in their svarupa perform all their actions only for the purpose of serving Krishna. If some pious karmis who have spiritual good-fortune follow the ideals of bhaktas in a bona fide sampradaya and offer all their activities unto the lotus feet of Shri Bhagavan, they quickly rise above karma-mishra bhakti and are counted among the bhaktas."

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura quotes Krishna as saying, "O Arjuna, now ascertain your own qualification. You are engaged in assisting Me in My pastimes, having descended with Me as a dharma-vira (righteous hero); therefore, you can neither be counted among the nirapeksha (indifferent, shanta) bhaktas nor the sakama-bhaktas. You will only perform that bhakti which is mixed with nishkama-karma and jnana. It is, therefore, your duty to offer Me whatever austerities and other activities you perform. The conception of the materialists is to perform an act with material desires and then offer the activity to Me simply as a remnant. This conception is empty and useless. You should offer the action in the right way at its inception and thus perform nishkama-karma-jnanami shra bhakti."

9.28

shubhashubha-phalair evam / mokshyase karma-bandhanaih
sannyasa-yoga-yuktatma / vimukto mam upaishyasi

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.28 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/28/en>

evam---thus; mokshyase---you shall be freed; shubha-ashubhaphalai h---from the auspicious and inauspicious results; karmabandhanai h---by which there is bondage through fruitive reaction; (being) yukta-atma---a soul linked up; sannyasa-yoga---in the yoga of renunciation; vimuktah---fully liberated; upaishyasi--- you will attain; mam---Me.

In this way, you will be freed from the bondage of the auspicious and inauspicious results of karma. Being thus blessed with the yoga of renunciation by offering Me all the results of your actions, you will become distinguished even among liberated souls and you will attain Me.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

"In this way, you will become free from the bondage of karma and its unlimited good and bad results." Shri Gopalat apani Upanishad states: "Krishna-bhajana is bhakti." By this bhakti one becomes free from worldly (laukika) as well as higher celestial (paralaukika) designations. In other words, one becomes free from desiring the fruits of one's activities and fixes one's mind only in bhajana to Shri Krishna. This is called naishkarmya, and, therefore, to give up the result of karma is certainly sannyasa. Those whose atma (mind) is fixed in such yoga are yoga-yuktatma. "When gifted with this yoga, you will not merely be liberated, mukta, but you will be vimukta, a distinguished person even among the liberated souls and you will come to Me to engage in My direct service. "

"O mahamuni, among millions of liberated and perfected beings, a peaceful devotee of Lord Narayana is most rare. (Shrimad-Bhagavatam 6.14.5)" And furthermore, "The Lord can give mukti but He rarely gives bhakti. (Shrimad-Bhagavatam 5.6.18). From this statement of Shukadeva Gosvami, it is understood that direct service to Bhagavan with prema is superior to mukti.

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

One's heart is purified by taking shelter of pradhani-bhuta bhakti, as described above, and offering all actions to Bhagavan. Thus becoming free from the bondage of all good and bad karma, such persons can attain a special position amongst liberated souls and finally they can attain Bhagavan. Here it should be specifically understood that they attain the prema-mayi seva of Shri Bhagavan, which is far superior to mukti.

9.29

samo .ham sarva-bhuteshu / na me dveshyo 'sti na priyah
ye bhajanti tu mam bhaktya / mayi te teshu capy aham

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.29 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/29/en>

aham---I am; samah---equal; sarva-bhuteshu---to all living beings; me---for Me; na asti---there is no-one; dveshyah---hated; na priyah---or dear; tu---however; te---they; ye---who; bhajanti--- worship; mam---Me; bhaktya---with devotion; (are) mayi---in Me; ca---and; aham---I (am); api---also; teshu---in them.

I am equally disposed to all living beings and am neither inimical nor partial to anyone. But as those who serve Me with bhakti are attached to Me, so too am I bound by affection for them.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

Arjuna may say, "O Krishna, You bring only Your bhaktas near You by liberating them, but You do not bring the non-devotees. This means that You are also partial, since this is an expression of attachment and envy." In response, Shri Bhagavan speaks this shloka beginning with samo 'ham, in which He says, "No, no, I am equal to all. The bhaktas live in Me and I also live in them." According to this explanation, the whole universe is in Bhagavan and Bhagavan is also in the whole universe. He shows no partiality by doing this. The statement (Gita 4.11), ye yatha mam prapadyante tams tathaiva bhajamy aham means, "I reciprocate with the consciousness with which one surrenders to Me and also worship him accordingly; and in whichever way the bhaktas are attached to Me, I, who exist in them, am similarly attached to them." This should be understood. In this regard, the example of a wish-fulfilling tree can be given. Those who desire the tree's fruit take shelter of it, but in reality they are not attached to the tree at all; they are only attached to its fruit. Moreover, the wish-fulfilling tree does not become attached to those who take its shelter, nor does it hate those who have enmity towards it. Yet Bhagavan kills the enemies of His bhaktas with His own hands. As Bhagavan said while speaking about Prahlada, "When Hiranyakashipu acts inimically towards Prahlada, I will certainly destroy him even though he has become powerful by the boons of Brahma." Some commentators give a different explanation of the word tu in this shloka. "This partiality in the form of bhakta-vatsalya is always an ornament, not a defect." In this way, Krishna's bhakta-vatsalya is well known, not His vatsalya for a jnani or yogi. Just as it is natural for a person to be affectionately inclined to his own servant and not to the servants of others, Bhagavan has affection for His bhaktas and not for the devotees of Rudra or Durga Devi.

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

The following objection may be raised: "By giving special liberation to His bhaktas, Bhagavan bestows upon them the prema-mayi seva of His lotus feet, but He does not behave like this with the non-devotees. Is this not symptomatic of the defect of partiality, which arises from attachment and envy?. In response to this, it is stated that He has equal vision. He does not hate anybody nor is anyone dear to Him. He creates and maintains humans and other living beings according to their karma. Somebody may say that while maintaining the jivas according to their karma, He gives happiness to one, misery to someone else and moksha to another, so does this not indicate the defect of partiality arising from attachment and envy? The answer to this is found in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (6.17.22) wherein it is said:

na tasya kashcid dayitah pratipo
na jnati-bandhur na paro na ca svah
samasya sarvatra niranjanasya
sukhe na ragah kuta eva roshah
He is equal to all living beings. There is nobody who is dear or not dear to Him. Since a detached person has no attraction to sense pleasure, how can he become angry when his sense pleasure is disturbed?

This is also seen in the next shloka of Shrimad-Bhagavatam (6.17.23):

tathapi tac-chakti-visarga esham
sukhaya duhkhaya hitahitaya
bandhaya mokshaya ca mrityu-janmanoh
sharirinam samsritaye 'vakalpate

Although Shri Krishna is the original performer of action, He Himself is not the cause of the jiva's happiness, distress, bondage and liberation. It is only guna-maya which governs the karmic results of the jiva.s sin and piety and becomes the cause of the jiva.s birth and death, happiness and distress.

Because there is no difference between the energy and the energetic, it is true that the activities of His maya-shakti will also be seen as His own work. Yet one cannot attribute the defect of partiality to Him, because the results a jiva receives for his actions are in accordance with his own karma. While commenting on this shloka, Shrila Vishvanatha Cakravarti Thakura gives the example of the sun and the owl. The sunlight is miserable for the owl, the kumuda flower and certain other entities, but it is pleasing for the cakravaka bird and the lotus flower. One cannot accuse the sun of having the defect of partiality. In the same way, Bhagavan's maya awards results according to the jiva's actions. One cannot attribute to Him the defect of partiality because of this. In this context, one should also deliberate upon the following shloka from Shrimad-Bhagavatam (8.5.22):

na yasya vadhyo na ca rakshaniyo
nopekshaniyadaraniya-pakshah
athapi sarga-sthiti-samyamartham
dhatte rajah-sattva-tamamsi kale
For Shri Bhagavan, there is no one to be killed, no one to be protected, no one to be neglected and no one to be worshiped.

Nonetheless, for the sake of creation, maintenance and annihilation according to a specific time, He accepts different forms in either sattva, rajo or tamo guna.

This is Bhagavan's general principle for all jivas, but in the present Gita shloka He explains a special principle by the word tu. "Those who follow the limbs of bhakti such as shravanam and kirtanam and engage in My bhajana are extremely attached to Me and become situated in Me. And I, who am the Supreme Controller, also become situated in them with devotion." According to the principle of a gem and gold, the gem produces the gold. Similarly, by the grace of Bhagavan, bhakti appears in one's heart. Bhagavan also has devotion to His bhaktas. As Shukadeva Gosvami says in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (10.86.59): bhagavan bhaktabhaktim an. "The Supreme Lord is devoted to His bhaktas."

It is also stated in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (8.16.14): tathapi bhaktam bhajate maheshvarah. "In the same way that bhaktas are attached to Maheshvara Krishna, He is also attached to His bhaktas." This is the special quality of mutual love. It is written in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.2.55): visrijati hridayam na yasya sakshad. "Such premi-bhaktas who have tied Krisna.s lotus feet with the ropes of love are never given up by Him." This shloka describes that, just as their relationship of the heart is mentioned, their external relationship is also established. This relationship is confirmed in Adi Purana:

asmakam guravo bhakta bhaktanam guravo vayam madbhakt
a yatra gacchanti tatra gacchami parthiva.
Bhagavan says, "Bhaktas are My guru; and I am the guru for the bhaktas. Wherever the bhaktas go, I also go there." A wish-fulfilling tree gives results according to the mood of those who have taken its shelter and does not give results to those who have not taken its shelter. In the same way, although He is impartial, Bhagavan differentiates between those who take His shelter and those who do not by giving them different results. The speciality of Shri Krishna over and beyond the wish-fulfilling tree is that the wish-fulfilling tree does not become subordinate to those who take its shelter, whereas Krishna becomes subordinate to His bhaktas. Therefore, one can only see the qualities of friendship, hatred and indifference in Him in relationship to bhakti. Well-known examples are His friendly relationship with Ambarisha Maharaja and His indifference toward Durvasa and others who were envious. It is a fact that Shri Krishna is equal to all, but what is more important is that He favours His bhaktas. Of all His qualities, this particular quality is a special ornament. Shrimad-Bhagavatam, Bhagavad-gita and other shastras give evidence of this.

9.30

api cet su-duracaro / bhajate mam ananya-bhak
sadhur eva sa mantavyah / samyag vyavasito hi sah

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.30 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/30/en>

cet---if; api---even; su-duracarah---a person of very bad character; (becomes) ananya-bhak---exclusively devoted; (and) bhajate--- worships; mam---Me; sah---he; eva---certainly; hi mantavyah--- should indeed be considered; sadhuh---a virtuous person; (for) sah---he; (has become) samyak---rightly; vyavasitah---situated.

If even a man of abominable character engages in My ananya-bhajana, he is still to be considered a sadhu, due to being rightly situated in bhakti.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

"My attachment for My bhakta is natural and, even if his behaviour is degraded, My attachment for him is not lost and I make him supremely righteous." For this reason, Shri Bhagavan speaks this shloka beginning with the words api cet. Suduracarah means that even if he is addicted to killing others, having illicit relations with women, and being attached to others. wealth, if he engages in My bhajana, he is surely saintly. What type of bhajana must he perform? In answer to this Bhagavan says: ananya-bhak. "He is a sadhu who does not worship any devata but only worships Me, who does not engage in any karma and jnana but only engages in bhakti to Me, and who does not desire any happiness such as the attainment of a kingdom but only desires to attain Me." But where is the question of his being a sadhu if some type of bad behaviour is visible in him? In response, Bhagavan says: mantavyah. "He must be considered a sadhu. From the word mantavyah, the following injunction is indicated: There is a flaw in that person who does not consider him to be a sadhu. In this regard, My order alone is authoritative."

If a person who engages in Your bhajana is also poorly behaved, can he be considered a partial sadhu? In response, Shri Bhagavan says: eva. "He is to be considered a complete sadhu. One should not see that he lacks any saintly qualities because he has made a staunch resolve (samyag vyavasitah). His resolve is as follows: "Due to my sins, whether I go to hell or degrade to a bird or animal species, I will never give up aikantika-bhakti to Shri Krishna.""

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

In the present shloka, Bhagavan, who is bhakta-vatsala, is explaining the inconceivable power of His bhakti by making a declaration. "Even if My bhakta is seen to be engaged in an abominable act, I will very quickly make him an exalted person whose behaviour is good. There is no possibility of bad behaviour in such perfect persons who take shelter of My ananya-bhakti. Even if they appear to be badly behaved in the eyes of the ignorant, in reality they are not. In fact, they are definitely saintly. What to speak of the ignorant, even big scholars cannot understand the actions and moods of the Vaishnavas. It is said in Chaitanya-caritamrita: vaishnavera kriya mudra vijne na bujhaya. "It is not possible to understand the behaviour of uttama-adhikari bhaktas with one's material senses."" While warning a brahmana resident of Navadvipa not to disrespect Shri Nityananda Prabhu, Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu said: shuna vipra mahadhikari yeva haya / tabe tana dosha-guna kichu na janmaya (Chaitanya-Bhagavata, Adi-lila 6.26). "There is no possibility of good or bad material qualities even touching an uttama-bhagavata maha-adhikari of bhakti.

Those who continue to view him as lowly will go to hell." Shri Krishna similarly instructed Uddhava:

na mayy ekanta-bhaktanam / guna-doshodbhava gunah
sadhunam sama-cittanam / buddheh param upeyusham
Shrimad-Bhagavatam 11.20.36

There is no possibility of the piety or sin resulting from the performance of prescribed or forbidden activities coming to My aikantika-bhaktas who are free from attachment and envy, who have equal vision towards everyone and who have attained Bhagavan, who is beyond mundane intelligence. Yet one should always remember that the apparently poor behaviour of such ananya-bhaktas is not to be imitated. One should neither criticise them nor associate with them. As it is said in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (10.33.29): tejiyasam na doshaya vahneh sarva-bhujo yatha. Destruction is certain for those who criticise the behaviour of maha-bhagavatas who externally may appear to behave improperly. Fire burns all substances, pure or impure, although it remains pure itself. Similarly, although externally the behaviour of powerful maha- purushas may appear improper, they always remain pure. Shrimad-Bhagavatam describes that the sons of Marici, who were the grandsons of jagad-guru Brahma, had to take birth among the asuras as a result of ridiculing Brahma.s inconceivable behaviour.

What to speak of perfected devotees, even if the sadhaka of ananya-bhakti is seen to sometimes act improperly due to previous habits, he should still be considered saintly because his action is accidental. This is the deep meaning of this shloka. While commenting on the above shloka of Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.20.36), Shrila Cakravarti Thakura gives the same conclusion. Shri Krishna is saying, "A bhakta who performs ananyabhajana, who does not worship any other god or goddess, who does not take shelter of any process other than My bhakti, such as karma, jnana and yoga, who does not desire anything besides My pleasure and, what is more, who knows Me as the only Master and as the Supreme, engages in My bhajana. Such a bhakta naturally has no taste for improper behaviour.

But if accidentally, or by the will of fate, there is a discrepancy in his behaviour, he should still be considered saintly.

This is My special order. If a person disobeys it, he will incur sin. The reason such persons are to be considered sadhus is explained herein. It is because their resolve is proper. In other words, they have aikantika-nishtha, exclusive faith, in Me."

In this regard, Shrila Vishvanatha Cakravarti Thakura has commented on the following shloka from Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.20.27-28):

jata-shraddho mat-kathasu / nirvinŽah sarva-karmasu
veda duhkhatmakan kaman / parityage 'py anishvarah
tato bhajeta mam pritah / shraddhalur dridha-nishcayah
jushamaŽash ca tan kaman / duhkhodarkamsh ca garhayan
He writes that the word dridha-nishcayah in the phrase shraddhalur dridha-nishcayah means, "Whether I am attached to home, etc., or not, or whether that attachment increases, if millions of obstacles enter my bhajana, if due to offenses I have to go to hell, or even if I am overpowered by lust, I will not accept the processes of jnana, karma and yoga under any circumstance, even if Brahma himself orders me." Those who have such determination are called dridha-nishcayah.

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura quotes KrishŽa as saying, "Even if those who engage in My bhajana with their minds completely fixed on Me, are badly behaved, still they should be considered saintly because the resolve they take in their engagement is righteous in every respect and all-beautiful." The meaning of the word su-duracarah must be understood properly. The behaviour of a baddha-jiva is of two types:

sambandhika (conditional) and svarupa-gata (constitutional). Activities such as keeping clean, performing pious acts and nourishing or satisfying the needs of the body, society and progress of mind are called sambandhika (conditional).

Bhajana which is a fully conscious activity performed for Me by the jiva in his pure state is his svarupa-gata (constitutional function). This function is also called amishra-bhakti or kevala-bhakti. In the bound state the jiva's performance of kevala-bhakti has an irrevocable relationship with his sambandhika behaviour. Sambandhika behaviour will certainly continue as long as one has this body, even when ananya-bhakti appears. Only when bhakti appears does the jiva lose his taste in everything that is unfavourable to devotion. One becomes detached from sense objects to the extent that one's taste increases in krishŽa-bhajana. Until the taste for sense objects is completely removed, it sometimes forces one to behave improperly, but it is very quickly subdued by acquiring a loving tendency towards KrishŽa. The behaviour of a person who is situated in the higher levels of bhakti is all-beautiful and righteous. If sometimes, accidentally, a person is seen to be engaging not only in bad, but evil behaviour, performing activities for which a bhakta does not have a natural taste such as killing others, taking away others. wealth and having illicit relationships with others' wives, he will be very quickly purified of such behaviour nonetheless. My bhakti, which is very powerful and purifying, is not polluted by this behaviour. This should be understood. A parama-bhakta should not be considered degraded because of his past indulgence in activities such as eating fish or having illicit relationships with women."

9.31

kshipram bhavati dharmatma / shashvac chantim nigacchati
kaunteya pratijanihi / na me bhaktah praŽashyati

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.31 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/31/en>

bhavati---he becomes; kshipram---quickly; dharma-atma---a virtuous person; nigacchati---and attains; shashvat---lasting; shantim--- peace; kaunteya---O son of Kunti; pratijanihi---you should proclaim (that); me---My; bhaktah---bhakta; na---never; praŽashyati--- perishes.

He quickly becomes virtuous and attains eternal peace. O Kaunteya, declare it boldly that My bhakta never perishes.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

The following questions may be raised: "How can You accept the service of such an adharmika and unrighteous person? How can You eat the foodstuffs offered by a person whose heart is polluted by defects such as lust and anger?. Shri Bhagavan answers by speaking this shloka beginning with the word kshipram. "He very quickly becomes righteous." Here the word kshipram means that, he quickly becomes righteous and achieves eternal peace. The words bhavati and nigacchati are used in the present tense instead of the future. This proves that right after engaging in irreligious or abominable activity, he laments and remembers KrishŽa again and again, thus he quickly becomes righteous. "Alas, alas! There is nobody fallen like me who has brought such infamy to bhakti. Fie on me!" Repeatedly lamenting in this way, he attains eternal peace. Or if he eventually becomes dharmika and righteous, irreligiosity and contamination may remain in him in a subtle form. The deadly heat of fever or poison may remain for some time even after taking the best medicine. Similarly, as soon as bhakti enters such a person.s mind, his evil conduct ceases, though it may remain in a subtle form for some time. Later, in a higher state, indications of poor behaviour such as lust and anger may exist but they will have no influence, just like a snake whose poisonous fangs have been removed and whose poison is thus ineffective. This should be understood. Thus, his lust and anger are eternally quelled (shantim) in a way that is unparalleled. He should be considered to have a pure heart even while he is still in the condition where he behaves inappropriately. Shrila Shridhara Svami says that if they become religious or righteous then there is no argument, but what can be said of a bhakta who is unable to give up such bad behaviour even until the time of death? In response to this, Bhagavan strongly and angrily says: kaunteya pratijanihi na me bhaktah praŽashyati. "Even when he dies, he does not fall. But those who speak harshly against him due to poor logic will not accept this." Thinking like this, KrishŽa spoke words of encouragement to Arjuna who was overwhelmed with grief and doubt. "O Kaunteya, while making a great sound with kettle drums, go to the assembly of those who dispute this, and raising both your arms in the air, and being free from any doubt, declare that a bhakta of Mine is never destroyed, even if he is poorly behaved. Rather, he becomes successful. In this way all their illogical words will be destroyed by your eloquence and they will definitely take shelter of you, accepting you as their guru."

Here, the following objection may be raised: Why is Bhagavan asking Arjuna to make this declaration instead of making it Himself? As Bhagavan says in Bhagavad-gita (18.65): "You will surely attain Me. In truth, I am taking this vow because you are very dear to Me." So why does Bhagavan not say: "O Kaunteya, I declare that My bhakta is never lost.? In response it is said that at that time Bhagavan pondered, "I cannot tolerate even the slightest insult to My bhaktas and therefore, in many instances, I Myself sometimes break My own vow, even though I have to accept insults as a result. In this way, I protect the words of My bhakta, just as I will protect the words of Bhishma in this battle by breaking My own vow. Those who are non-devotees and cynics will laugh at My vow, but the words of Arjuna will be like marks etched on stone." For this reason, KrishŽa made Arjuna take this vow. Having heard about the ananya-bhakti of such an ill-behaved person, some will understand this to mean that an ananya-bhakta is only one who has no adharmika qualities such as lamentation, delusion and anger which all arise from attachment to wife, children and so forth. But such an explanation by so-called scholars should be rejected.

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

Sadhakas of ananya-bhakti have a natural distaste for improper or evil behaviour and always will have. Yet, if by accident the ananya-bhakta is poorly behaved, due to the will of providence that tendency is only temporary. The inconceivable influence of ananya-bhakti is not lost by it. The tendency to misbehave is quickly removed by the inconceivable influence of ananya-bhakti situated in the heart, and such persons become free from piety and sin and attain supreme peace born of bhakti. "Ananya-bhaktas are never lost." In the present shloka, KrishŽa, who is very affectionate to His bhaktas, is making His dearmost friend Arjuna take this oath. This statement is also in the Nrisimha PuraŽa:

bhagavati ca harav ananya-ceta
bhrisha-malino 'pi virajate manushyah
na hi shasha-kala-cchavih kadacit
timira-parabhavatam upaiti candrah

Those bhaktas whose thoughts are exclusively absorbed in Shri Hari are always situated in their own glory, even if externally they are seen to engage in abominable behaviour. This is because of the influence of bhakti situated within their hearts. This is likened to the full moon that has dark spots on it, even though it is never covered by darkness.

Shri Bhagavan has also said:
badhyamano 'pi mad-bhakto / vishayair ajitendriyah
prayah pragalbhaya bhaktya / vishayair nabhibhuyate
Shrimad-Bhagavatam 11.14.18

My dear Uddhava, if My bhakta has not fully conquered his senses, he may be afflicted by material desires, but because of his unflinching bhajana to Me, he will not be defeated by sense gratification. While commenting on this shloka, Shrila Vishvanatha Cakravarti Thakura writes: "Even those who are just in the preliminary stage of sadhana-bhakti become successful and blessed, not to mention those who are gradually attaining the stages of nishtha and bhava, what to speak of shuddhabhaktas in whose hearts bhava has already manifested."

In literature dealing with jnana-marga (the path of jnana), both a jnani who behaves improperly, and his jnana are criticised, but even if a bhakta behaves improperly he and his bhakti are not criticised in the bhakti-shastras. In this regard, one of the best Nava-yogendras, Karabhajana Rishi, says:

sva-pada-mulam bhajatah priyasya
tyaktanya-bhavasya harih pareshah
vikarma yac cotpatitam kathancid
dhunoti sarvam hridi sannivishtah
Shrimad-Bhagavatam 11.5.42

It is not possible for those premi-bhaktas who engage in bhajana to the lotus feet of their most dear Shri KrishŽa with ananya-bhava, having given up all other thoughts, faiths and activities, to engage in sinful activities. However, if somehow or other they do, then by sitting in their heart, Shri Hari cleans everything and makes their hearts pure.

Someone may say that a bhakta who engages in sinful activity must atone for it, but Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.20.25) states:

yadi kuryat pramadena / yogi karma vigarhitam
yogenaiva dahed amho / nanyat tatra kadacana
A bhakti-yogi never engages in an abominable act, but if at some time, he commits an offense inadvertently then he should destroy this sin by the process of bhakti-yoga only; he should not take to other difficult atonements such as candrayaŽa. This same conclusion is also given in Shri Bhakti-rasamritasindhu:

nishiddhacarato daivat / prayashcittan tu nocitam
iti vaishŽava-shastraŽam / rahasyam tad-vidam matam
If by the will of fate a sadhaka engages in a forbidden act, then it is not proper for him to atone for it separately because the influence of bhakti performs the function of atonement. Separate atonement is not necessary. This is the secret of the VaishŽava literature.

Somebody may raise the following objection: "Why did Bhagavan Himself not make the statement, "My bhaktas are not lost." Why did He ask Arjuna to do it?" The answer is that bhakta-vatsala Shri KrishŽa protects the words of His bhaktas even at the expense of breaking His own word. An example of this took place in the battle of Kurukshetra, where He protected the vow of Bhishma by breaking His own.

9.32

mam hi partha vyapashritya / ye .pi syuh papa-yonayah
striyo vaishyas tatha shudras / te 'pi yanti param gatim

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.32 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/32/en>

partha---O son of Pritha; vyapashritya---by taking shelter; mam---of Me; hi---certainly; api---even; te---those; ye---who; syuh---may be; papa-yonayah---born of sinful parentage; striyah---women; vaishyah---merchants; tatha---and; api---even; shudrah---manual labourers; yanti---attain; param---the supreme; gatim---destination.

O Partha, by taking shelter of Me, even the lowborn, such as women, merchants, shudras, or whoever, are certain to attain the supreme destination.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

"In this way, bhakti to Me does not consider the incidental discrepancies of a person who behaves improperly due to karma. What is the wonder in this? My bhakti does not consider the natural, inherent defects in those who are badly behaved because of their caste." Antyaja, mlecchas, etc., are called papa-yonayah (those of sinful birth). As it is said in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (2.4.18), .I pay my obeisances to that omnipotent Bhagavan, who is so merciful that, by taking shelter of the lotus feet of a sad-guru who is His representative and who has taken shelter of Him, one can become free from the defects born of caste or action, be he a Kirata, HuŽa, Andhra, Pulinda, Pulkasha, Abhira, Shumbha, Yavana, Khasa, etc. All of these are miscreants because of their caste, and sinful due to their actions."

Moreover, Shrimad-Bhagavatam (3.33.7) says: "Any person whose tongue has chanted Your name even once is most worshipable, even though he may be born in a caŽdala family. Those who chant Your name have already performed all types of tapasya and yajna, bathed in all the holy places, studied the Vedas and performed all other prescribed actions." This also refers to women, prostitutes, vaishyas and so on who take shelter of Shri Bhagavan even if they are impure and not truthful.

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

In the previous shloka, Bhagavan explained that a sadhaka who devoutly engages in the practice of ananya-bhakti should be considered saintly, even if externally some incidental poor behaviour is seen in him. Now, in the present shloka, Bhagavan is explaining that those who take shelter of Him by engaging in ananya-bhakti, even if born in sinful caŽdala or mleccha families, in low-class shudra families, or even women such as prostitutes who are naturally engaged in illicit activities, all very quickly attain the supreme destination by the influence of bhakti to Shri KrishŽa, which is rare even for yogis.

In Shrimad-Bhagavatam (2.4.18), Shri Sukadeva Gosvami says: "kirata-huŽandhra-pulinda-pulkasha. Kirata, HuŽa, Andhra, Pulinda, Pulkasha, Abhira, Shumbha, Yavana, Khasa, etc., and all others addicted to sinful activities can be purified by taking shelter of the bhaktas of Shri Hari, due to His being the supreme power. I offer my obeisances to Him."

While commenting on this shloka, Shrila Vishvanatha Cakravarti Thakura writes: "Just by becoming endowed with a scent of kevala-bhakti, even the most sinful attain perfection. Those who are low by caste or birth, such as the Kiratas and those who perform sinful actions, become purified by bhakti only when they accept a shuddha-vaishŽava as their guru. A person becomes supremely pure and free from the defects coming from his birth as well as his actions, merely by accepting the shelter of the lotus feet of a sad-guru. In Bhakti-rasamrita-sindhu Shrila Rupa Gosvami says that bhakti destroys both prarabdha and aprarabdha sins at their very root. The Kiratas, for example, are impure because of their birth in a low caste. Sin in the form of a low caste birth is prarabdha-karma and is removed by just a scent of bhakti." In this regard, Shrila Vishvanatha Cakravarti Thakura further says: "In practical life ignorant persons identify those who have accepted vaishŽava-diksha by their dynasty or caste. From the spiritual perspective, none of the defects of caste and birth remain in a person who has taken diksha. This is the reality. Such persons themselves become fallen who place undue emphasis on the birth and caste of one who has taken diksha from a sad-guru. Such condemnation, however, brings no harm to the person who has taken initiation. A person who criticises VaishŽavas is required to atone for it himself. Devahuti also said:

yan-namadheya-shravaŽanukirtanad
yat-prahvaŽad yat-smaraŽad api kvacit
shvado .pi sadyah savanaya kalpate
kutah punas te bhagavan nu darshanat
Shrimad-Bhagavatam 3.33.6

Simply by hearing and chanting Your name, paying obeisances to You and remembering You, even a caŽdala immediately becomes qualified to perform soma-yajna, without waiting for another birth to be able to do so. O Bhagavan! What, then, can be said about the incomparable influence of Your darshana?

Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Prabhupada writes: "This shloka is not spoken for common caŽdalas (dog-eaters) who have taken birth in a fallen family according to their prarabdha-karma, and remain engaged for the rest of their lives in abominable acts fit for their caste. Rather, it is spoken for VaishŽavas who, after taking birth in a family of dog eaters, become disinterested in the abominable activities of their family tradition and, after taking diksha from a sad-guru, remain engaged in the service of Shri Bhagavan."

It is certain that those who are gifted with a saintly nature have followed with staunch faith all the behaviour of a brahmiŽical tradition in their past life. In their previous birth, these people have completed austerities and sacrifices, bathed in the holy places, studied the Vedas and so forth. They have just acted out taking birth in an asurika family to bewilder the foolish and teach the ideal among the Vedic paŽditas. Bhagavan has also said in Itihasa samuccaya:

na me 'bhaktash caturvedi / mad-bhaktah shva-pacah priyah
tasmai deyam tato grahyam / sa ca pujyo yatha hy aham

It is not that a brahmaŽa who knows all the four Vedas will necessarily be a bhakta, but My bhakta, even if born in a caŽdala family, is dear to Me and is the proper recipient of charity and the proper person from whom charity should be accepted. Even if born in a caŽdala family, My bhakta, like Me, is respected by all, even by the brahmaŽas.

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura says that, in this way, the reason a person who has taken shelter of the holy name of Shri KrishŽa has taken birth in the house of a caŽdala is to perfect the quality of humility which is favourable for bhakti. From this shloka, we can also understand more about the deliverance of the hunter by the mercy of Narada Muni, of Jagai and Madhai by the mercy of Shri Shri Gaura- Nityananda, and of the prostitute by the mercy of Thakura Haridasa.

9.33

kim punar brahmaŽah puŽya / bhakta rajarshayas tatha
anityam asukham lokam / imam prapya bhajasva mam

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.33 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/33/en>

kim punah---how much more?; puŽyah---the pious; brahmaŽah--- brahmaŽas; tatha---and; raja-rishayah---saintly kings; (can become) bhaktah---devotees; prapya---therefore having come; (to) imam--- this; anityam---temporary; (and) asukham---unhappy; lokam--- world; bhajasva---worship; mam---Me.

What doubt, then, can there be that pious brahmaŽas and saintly kings can become bhaktas? Therefore, having come to this temporary and miserable world, engage yourself in performing My bhajana.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

"If this is their destination, what to speak of the bhaktas who are brahmaŽas, born in good families and who are of pure conduct. Therefore, O Arjuna, render loving service unto Me."

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

If those who are born in a low family and who behave badly can very quickly develop good conduct by taking shelter of ananya-bhakti, and can thus attain the supreme destination, what is the wonder if those who are born in a good family and whose conduct is pure also achieve the supreme destination by taking exclusive shelter of Shri Bhagavan? Making Arjuna the object of His teachings, Shri KrishŽa is instructing all jivas to perform bhajana to His eternal blissful svarupa as long as they remain in this temporary and miserable world. In this shloka it is declared that the material world is mutable, perishable and miserable, but it does not describe it as false. Some philosophers imagine that the world is false but this idea is against the principle of Bhagavad-gita. The dhama of Shri KrishŽa is called aprakrita or transcendental, and it is eternal and blissful. Jivas who attain to that abode never fall from there.

9.34

man-mana bhava mad-bhakto / mad-yaji mam namaskuru
mam evaishyasi yuktvaivam / atmanam mat-parayaŽah

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 9.34 <http://www.bhagavadgitaasitis.com/9/34/en>

bhava---be; mat-manah---absorbed in thoughts of Me; bhava--- become; mat-bhaktah---My devotee; bhava---be engaged; mady aji---as My worshipper; namaskuru---bow down; mam---before Me; eva---certainly; evam---in this way; yuktva---having engaged; atmanam---your body and mind; mat-parayaŽah---and surrendered to Me; eshyasi---you will come; mam---to Me.

Always absorb your mind in Me, become My bhakta, worship Me and offer obeisances unto Me. In this way, with mind and body fully surrendered in My service, you will certainly achieve Me.

SARARTHA-VARShINI
BY ShRILA VIShVANATHA CAKRAVARTI THAKURA

By the words man-manah, Shri Bhagavan is concluding this chapter by explaining the process of bhajana. Atmanam, "engage your mind and body in Me and perform bhajana to Me." The mere contact of bhakti purifies everyone, whether they are qualified or not. This is described in this Ninth Chapter which is entitled raja-guhyah.

Thus ends the Bhavanuvada of the Sarartha-VarshiŽi Tika, by Shrila Vishvanatha Cakravarti Thakura, on the Ninth Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita, which gives pleasure to the bhaktas and is accepted by all saintly persons.

SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI
BY ShRILA BHAKTIVEDANTA NARAYANA MAHARAJA

The supreme purpose for every jiva is to attain krishŽa-prema. Performing ananya-bhakti is the only means to achieve this purpose. Only shuddha-jivas are qualified to perform bhajana of Shri Bhagavan, the para-tattva. The svarupa of Shri KrishŽa is the highest object of worship for shuddha-jivas. Unless one understands this siddhanta perfectly, his endeavour for the supreme goal (paramartha) cannot be executed purely. Shuddha-bhakti, completely free from jnana, karma and yoga, has been explained in Chapters Seven and Eight. In the Ninth Chapter, the most supreme worshipable tattva has been described. In order to establish this tattva, it is necessary to describe the defects coming from the worship of other devis and devatas who also appear to be the worshipable reality. Therefore, the eternally perfect nature of the supremely pure and conscious svarupa of Shri KrishŽa has been established scientifically. The jnani, yogi and the performers of yajnas worship only manifestations, such as brahma and Paramatma, of this very Bhagavan, who has an eternal svarupa. A shuddha-bhakta, however, does not worship these partial manifestations of the Absolute; he only worships the eternal form of Shri KrishŽa. It is due to extreme ignorance that a person worships devas and devis separately from the eternal form of KrishŽa because by the worship of these devatas he can only partially attain his destination. One should completely give up the worship of other devas and devis in the bhakti-yoga process and, with no ulterior motive and with staunch faith, one should maintain one's body while engaging in navadha-bhakti such as shravaŽam, kirtanam and smaraŽam of Shri KrishŽa only. Such ananya-bhaktas are superior to karmis, jnanis and yogis, even if those ananyabhaktas are badly behaved in the preliminary stage. Hence, they are indeed saintly because in a matter of a few days they become fixed in their aikantika-bhava and their character becomes pure in all respects.

Only shuddha-bhakti to Bhagavan will produce the abovedescribed fruit of prema. The shuddha-bhakta of Bhagavan is never destroyed, nor can he fall because Bhagavan personally maintains and protects him. Hence, those who are intelligent maintain their body simply to perform shuddha-bhakti to Shri Bhagavan.

Thus ends the Sarartha-VarshiŽi Prakashika-vritti, by Shri Shrimad Bhaktivedanta NarayaŽa Maharaja, on the Ninth Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita.