Bhagvat Kahati Hai-  Canto-11


Krishna's Prayer by Kunti

Chapter-2 Chapter-3 Chapter-4 Chapter-5

Pure devotional service rendered to the Supreme Lord is spiritually so potent that simply by hearing about such transcendental service, by chanting its glories in response, by meditating on it, by respectfully and faithfully accepting it, or by praising the devotional service of others, even persons who hate the demigods and all other living beings can be immediately
purified. [12]

For the conditioned souls, the human body is most difficult to achieve, and it can be lost at any moment. But I think that even those who have achieved human life rarely gain the association of pure devotees, who are dear to the Lord of Vaikuntha. [29]

 After all, even half a moment’s association with pure devotees within this world of birth and death is a priceless treasure for any
man. [30]

 Even ignorant living entities can very easily come to know the Supreme Lord if they adopt those means prescribed by the Supreme Lord Himself. The process recommended by the Lord is to be known as bhagavata-dharma, or devotional service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. [34]

 In accordance with the particular nature one has required in conditioned life, whatever one does with body, words, mind, senses, intelligence or purified consciousness one should offer to the Supreme, thinking, ‘‘This is for the pleasure of Lord Narayana.’’ [36]

Therefore, an intelligent person should engage unflinchingly in the unalloyed devotional service of the Lord, under the guidance of bona fide spiritual master, whom he should accept as his worshipable deity and as his very life and soul. [37]

 A devotee should not see anything as being separate from the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krishna, ether, fire, air, water, earth, the sun and other luminaries, all living beings, the directions, trees and other plants, the rivers and oceans–whatever a devotee experiences he should consider to be an expansion of Krishna. Thus seeing everything that exists within creation as the body of the Supreme Lord, Hari, the devotee should offfer his sincere respects to the entire expansion of the Lord’s body. [41]

 A devotee who faithfully engages in the worship of the Deity in the temple but does not behave properly toward other devotees or people in general is called a Prakrita-bhakta, a materialistic devotee, and is considered to be in the lowest position. [47]

 Even while engaging his senses in contact with their objects, one who sees this whole world as the energy of Lord Visnu is neither repelled nor elated. He is indeed the greatest among devotees. [48]




Sri Antariksa said : O mighty-armed King, by activating the material elements, the primeval Soul of all creation has sent forth all living beings in higher and lower species so that these conditioned souls can cultivate either sense gratification or ultimate liberation, according to their desire. [3]

 Therefore any person who seriously desires real happiness must seek a bona fide spiritual master and take shelter of him by initiation. The qualification of the bona fide guru is that he has realized the conclusions of the scriptures by deliberation and is able to convince others of these conclusions. Such great personalities, who have taken shelter of the Supreme Godhead, leaving aside all material considerations,
should be understood to be bona fide spiritual masters. [21]

 Accepting the bona fide spiritual master as one’s life and soul and worshipable deity, the disciple should learn from him the process of pure devotional service. The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Hari, the soul of all souls, is inclined to give Himself to His pure devotees. Therefore, the disciple should learn from the spiritual master to serve the Lord without duplicity and in such a faithful and favourable way that the Supreme Lord, being satisfied, will offer Himself to the faithful disciple. [22]

 A sincere disciple should learn to dissociate the mind from everything material and positively cultivate association with his spiritual master and other saintly devotees. He should be merciful to those in an inferior position to him, cultivate friendship with those on an equal level and meekly serve those in a higher spiritual position. Thus he should learn to deal properly with all living beings. [23]

 To serve the spiritual master the disciple should learn cleanliness, austerity, tolerance, silence, study of Vedic knowledge, simplicity, celibacy, nonviolence and equanimity in the face of material dualities such as heat and cold, happiness and distress. [24]

 One should practice meditation by constantly seeing oneself to be an eternal cognizant spirit soul and seeing the Lord to be the absolute controller of everything. To increase one’s meditation, one should live in a secluded place and give up false attachment to one’s home and household paraphernalia. Giving up the decorations of the temporary material body, one should dress himself with scraps of cloth found in rejected places, or with the bark of trees. In this way one should learn to be satisfied in any material situation. [25]

 One should have firm faith that he will achieve all success in life by following those scriptures that describe the glories of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Bhagavan. At the same time, one should avoid blaspheming other scriptures. One should rigidly control his mind, speech and bodily activities, always speak the truth, and bring the mind and senses under full control. [26]

 One should perform sacrifice, charity and penance exclusively for the Lord’s satisfaction. Similarly, one should chant only those mantras which glorify the Supreme Personality of Godhead. And all one’s religious activities should be performed as an offering to the Lord. Whatever one finds pleasing or enjoyable he should immediately offer to the Supreme Lord, and even his wife, children, home and very life air he should offer at the lotus feet of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. [28]

 One should learn how to associate with the devotees of the Lord by gathering with them to chant the glories of the Lord. This process is most purifying. As devotees thus develop their loving friendship, they feel mutual happiness and satisfaction. And by thus encouraging one another they are able to give up material sense gratification, which is the cause of all suffering. [30]

 The Supreme Personality of Godhead is the cause of the creation, maintenance and destruction of this universe, yet He has no prior cause. He pervades the various states of wakefulness, dreaming and unconscious deep sleep and also exists beyond them. By entering the body of every living being as the Supersoul, He enlivens the body, senses, life airs and mental activities, and thus all the subtle and gross organs of the body begin their functions. My dear King, know that Personality of Godhead to be the Supreme. [35]

 Originally one, the Absolute, Brahman, comes to be known as threefold, manifesting itself as the three modes of material nature–goodness, passion and ignorance. Brahman further expands its potency, and thus the power to act and the power of consciousness become manifest, along with the false ego, which covers the identity of the conditioned living being. Thus, by the expansion of the multipotencies of the Absolute, the demigods, as the embodiment of knowledge, become manifest, along with the

 material senses, their objects, and the results of material activity, namely happiness and distress. In this way the manifestation of the material world takes place as the subtle cause and as the material effect visible in the appearance of gross material objects. Brahman, which is the source of all subtle and gross manifestations, is simultaneously transcendental to them, being absolute. [37]

 The spirit soul is born in many different species of life within the material world. Some species are born from eggs, others from embryos, others from the seeds of plants and trees, and others from perspiration. But in all species of life the prana, or vital air, remains unchanging and follows the spirit soul from one body to another. Similarly, the spirit soul is eternally the same despite its material condition of life. We have practical experience of this. When we are absorbed in deep sleep without dreaming, the material senses become inactive, and even the mind and false ego are merged into a dormant condition. But although the senses, mind and false ego are inactive, one remembers upon waking that he, the soul, was peacefully sleeping. [39]

 When one seriously engages in the devotional service of the Personality of Godhead, fixing the Lord’s lotus feet within one’s heart as the only goal of life, one can destroy the innumerable impure desires lodged within the heart as a result of one’s previous fruitive work within the three modes of material nature. When the heart is thus purified one can directly perceive both the Supreme Lord and one’s self as transcendental entities. Thus one becomes perfect in spiritual understanding through direct experience, just as one can directly experience the sunshine through normal, healthy vision. [40]

 Prescribed duties, nonperformance of such duties, and forbidden activities are topics one can properly understand through authorized study of the Vedic literature. This difficult subject matter can never be understood by mundane speculation. The authorized Vedic literature is the sound incarnation of the Personality of Godhead Himself, and thus Vedic knowledge is perfect. Even the greatest learned scholars are bewildered in their attempts to understand the science of action if they neglect the authority of Vedic knowledge. [43]

 Childish and foolish people are attached to materialistic, fruitive activities, although the actual goal of life is to become free from such activities. Therefore, the Vedic injunctions indirectly lead one to the path of ultimate liberation by first prescribing fruitive religious activities, just as a father promises his child candy so that the child will take his medicine. [44]

 By executing without attachment the regulated activities prescribed in the Vedas, offering the results of such work to the Supreme Lord, one attains the perfection of freedom from the bondage of material work. The material fruitive results offered in the revealed scriptures are not the actual goal of Vedic knowledge, but are meant for stimulating the interest of the performer. [46]

Having obtained the mercy of his spiritual master, who reveals to the disciple the injunctions of Vedic scriptures, the devotee should worship the Supreme Personality of Godhead in the particular personal form of the Lord the devotee finds most attractive. [48]



Anyone trying to enumerate or describe fully the unlimited qualities of the unlimited Supreme Lord has the intelligence of a foolish child. Even if a great genius could somehow or other, after a time-consuming endeavour, count all the particles of dust on the surface of the earth, such a genius could never count the attractive qualities of the Personality of Godhead, who is the reservoir of all potencies. [2]

 Within His body are elaborately arranged the three planetary systems of this universe. His transcendental senses generate the knowledge-acquiring and active senses of all embodied beings. His consciousness generates conditioned knowledge, and His powerful breathing produces the bodily strength, sensory power and conditioned activities of the embodied souls. He is the prime mover, through the agency of the material modes of goodness, passion and ignorance. And thus the universe is created, maintained and annihilated. [4]

 In the beginning, the original Supreme Personality manifested the form of Brahma through the material mode of passion in order to create this universe. The Lord manifested
His form as Visnu, the Lord of sacrifice and protector of the twice-born brahmanas and their religious duties, to maintain the universe. And when the universe is to be annihilated the same Supreme Lord employs the material mode of ignorance and manifests the form of Rudra. The created living beings are thus always subject to the forces of creation, maintenance and destruction. [5]

Some men practice severe penances to cross beyond our influence, which is like an immeasurable ocean with endless waves of hunger, thirst, heat, cold and the other conditions brought about by the passing of time, such as the sensuous wind and the urges of the tongue and sex organs. Nevertheless, although crossing this ocean of sense grafification through severe penances, such persons foolishly drown in a cow’s hoofprint when conquered by useless anger. Thus they exhaust the benefit of their difficult austerities in vain. [11]



Each of the four social orders, headed by the brahmanas, was born through different combinations of the modes of nature, from the face, arms, thighs and feet of the Supreme Lord in His universal form. Thus the four spiritual orders were also generated.

If any of the members of the four varnas and  four asramas fail to worship or intentionally disrespect the Personality of Godhead, who is the source of their own creation, they will fall down from their position into a hellish state of life. [2-3]

 The Personality of Godhead is eternally situated within the heart of every embodied being; still the Lord remains situated apart, just as the sky, which is all-pervading, does not mix with any material object. Thus the Lord is the supreme worshipable object and the absolute controller of everything. He is elaborately glorified in the Vedic literature, but those who are bereft of intelligence do not like to hear about Him. [10]

 In this material world the conditioned soul is always inclined to sex, meat-eating and intoxication. Therefore religious scriptures never actually encourage such activities. Although the scriptural injunctions provide for sex through sacred marriage, for meat-eating through sacrificial offerings and for intoxication through the acceptance of ritual cups of wine, such ceremonies are meant for the ultimate purpose of renunciation. [11]

 The only proper fruit of acquired wealth is religiousity, on the basis of which one can acquire a philosophical understanding of life that eventually matures into direct perception of the Absolute Truth and thus liberation from all suffering. Materialistic persons, however, utilize their wealth simply for the advancement of their family situation. They fail to see that insurmountable death will soon destroy the frail material body. [12]

 The conditioned souls become completely bound in affection to their own corpse like material bodies and their relatives and paraphernalia. In such a proud and foolish condition, the conditioned souls envy other living entities as well as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Hari, who resides in the heart
of all beings. Thus enviously offending others, the conditioned souls gradually fall down into hell. [15]

 Those who have turned away from the Supreme Lord, Vasudeva, being under the spell of the Lord’s illusory energy, are eventually forced to give up their so-called homes, children, friends, wives and lovers, which were all created by the illusory potency of the Supreme Lord, and enter against their will into the darkest regions of the universe. [18]

 Those who are actually advanced in knowledge are able to appreciate the essential value of this age of Kali. Such enlightened persons worship Kali-yuga because in this fallen age all perfection of life can easily be achieved by the performance of sankirtana. [36]

 Indeed, there is no higher possible gain for embodied souls forced to wander throughout the material world than the Supreme Lord’s sankirtana movement, by which one can attain the supreme peace and free oneself from the cycle of repeated birth and death. [37]

 My dear King, the inhabitants of Satya-yuga and other ages eagerly desire to take birth in this age of Kali, since in this age there will be many devotees of the Supreme Lord, Narayana. [38] 

O King, one who has given up all material duties and has taken full shelter of the lotus feet of Mukunda, who offers shelter to all, is not indebted to the demigods, great sages, ordinary living beings, relatives, friends, mankind or even one’s forefathers who have passed away. Since all such classes of living entities are part and parcel of the Supreme Lord, one who has surrendered to the Lord’s service has no need to serve such persons separately. [41]

 One who has thus given up all other engagements and has taken full shelter at the lotus feet of Hari, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is very dear to the Lord. Indeed, if such a surrendered soul accidentally commits some sinful activity, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is seated within everyone’s heart, immediately takes away the reaction to such sin. [42]


O greatest of all, those whose consciousness is polluted by illusion cannot purify themselves merely by ordinary worship, study of the Vedas, charity, austerity and ritual activities. Our Lord, those pure souls who have developed a powerful transcendental faith in Your glories achieve a purified state of existence that can never be attained by those lacking such faith. [9]

The nectar-bearing rivers of discussions about You, and also the holy rivers generated from the bathing of Your lotus feet, are able to destroy all contamination within the three worlds. Those who are striving for purification associate with the holy narrations of Your glories by hearing them with their ears, and they associate with the holy rivers flowing from Your lotus feet by physically bathing in them. [19]


My dear Uddhava, the material universe that you perceive through your mind, speech, eyes, ears and other senses is an illusory creation that one imagines to be real due to the influence of maya. In fact, you should know that all of the objects of the material senses are temporary. [7]

 One whose consciousness is bewildered by illusion perceives many differences in value and meaning among material objects. Thus one engages constantly on the platform of material good and evil and is bound by such conceptions. Absorbed in material duality, such a person contemplates the performance of compulsory duties, nonperformance of such duties and performance of forbidden activities. [8]

 Being fully endowed with conclusive knowledge of the Vedas and having realized the ultimate purpose of such knowledge in practice, you will be able to perceive the pure self, and thus your mind will be satisfied. At that time you will become dear to all living beings, headed by the demigods, and you will never be hampered by any disturbance in life. [10]

 The Supreme Lord replied : Generally those human beings who can expertly analyze the actual situation of the material world are able to raise themselves beyond the inauspicious life of gross material gratification. [19]

 An intelligent person, expert in perceiving the world around him and in applying sound logic, can achieve real benefit through his own intelligence. Thus sometimes one acts as one’s own instructing spiritual master. [20]

 The brahmana said : My dear King, with my intelligence I have taken shelter of many spiritual masters. Having gained transcendental understanding from them, I now wander about the earth in a liberated condition. Please listen as I describe them to you. [32]

 A sober person, even when harassed by other living beings, should understand that his aggressors are acting helplessly under the control of God, and thus he should never be distracted from progress on his own path. This rule I have learnt from the earth. [37]

 A saintly person should learn from the mountain to devote all his efforts to the service of others and to make the welfare of others the sole reason for his existence. Similarly, as the disciple of the tree, he should learn to dedicate himself to others. [38]

 A learned sage should take his satisfaction in the simple maintenance of his existence and should not seek satisfaction through gratifying the material senses. In other words, one should care for the material body in such a way that one’s higher knowledge is not destroyed and so that one’s speech and mind are not deviated from self-realization. [39]

 Even a transcendentalist is surrounded by innumerable material objects, which possess good and bad qualities. However, one who has transcended material good and evil should not become entangled even when in contact with the material objects; rather, he should act like the wind. [40]

 A thoughtful sage, even while living within a material body, should understand himself to be pure spirit soul. Similarly, one should see that the spirit soul enters within all forms of life, both moving and nonmoving, and that the individual souls are thus all-pervading. The sage should further observe that the Supreme Personality of Godhead, as the Supersoul, is simultaneously present within all things. Both the individual soul and the Supersoul can be understood by comparing them to the nature of the sky : although the sky extends everywhere and everything rests within the sky, the sky does not mix with anything, nor can it be divided by anything. [42]

 Although the mighty wind blows clouds and storms across the sky, the sky is never implicated or affected by these activities. Similarly, the spirit soul is not actually changed or affected by contact with the material nature. Although the living entity enters within a body made of earth, water and fire, and although he is impelled by the three modes of nature created by eternal time, his eternal spiritual nature is never actually affected. [43]

 O King, a saintly person is just like water because he is free from all contamination, gentle by nature, and by speaking creates a beautiful vibration like that of flowing water. Just by seeing, touching or hearing such a saintly person, just like a holy place, purifies all those who contact him because he always chants the glories of the Lord. [44]

 Saintly persons become powerful by execution of austerities. Their consciousness is unshakable because they do not try to enjoy anything within the material world. Such naturally liberated sages accept foodstuffs that are offered to them by destiny, and if by chance they happen to eat contaminated food, they are not affected, just like fire, which burns up contaminated substances that are offered to it. [45]

 A saintly person, just like fire, sometimes appears in a concealed form and at other times reveals himself. For the welfare of the conditioned souls who desire real happiness, a saintly person may accept the worshipable position of spiritual master, and thus like fire he burns to ashes all the past and future sinful reactions of his worshipers by mercifully accepting their offerings. [46]

 Just as fire manifests differently in pieces of wood of different sizes and qualities, the omnipotent Supreme Soul, having entered the bodies of higher and lower life forms created by His own potency, appears to assume the identity of each. [47]

 The various phases of one’s material life, beginning with birth and culminating in death, are all properties of the body and do not affect the soul, just as the apparent waxing and waning of the moon does not affect the moon itself. Such changes are enforced by the imperceptible movements of time. [48]

 Just as the sun evaporates large quantities of water by its potent rays and later returns the water to the earth in the form of rain, similarly, a saintly person accepts all types of material objects with his material senses, and at the appropriate time, when the proper person has approached him to request them, he returns such material objects. Thus, both in accepting and giving up the objects of the senses, he is not entangled. [50]

One should never indulge in excessive affection or concern for anyone or anything; otherwise one will have to experience great suffering, just like the foolish pigeon. [52]

 In this way, one who is too attached to family life becomes disturbed at heart. Like the pigeon, he tries to find pleasure in mundane sex attraction. Busily engaged in maintaining his own family, the miserly person is fated to suffer greatly, along with all his family members. [73]

 The doors of liberation are opened wide to one who has achieved human life. But if a human being simply devotes himself to family life like the foolish bird in this story, then he is to be considered as one who has climbed to a high place only to trip and fall down. [74]



The saintly brahmana said : O King, the embodied living entity automatically experiences unhappiness in heaven or hell. Similarly, happiness will also be experienced, even without one’s seeking it. Therefore a person of intelligent discrimination does not make any endeavour to obtain such material happiness. [1]

Following the example of the python, one should give up material endeavours and accept for one’s maintenance food that comes of its own accord, whether such food be delicious or tasteless, ample or meager. [2]

A saintly person should remain peaceful and materially inactive, maintaining his body without much endeavour. Even though possessed of full sensual, mental and physical strength, a saintly person should not become active for material gain but rather should always remain alert to his actual self-interest. [4]

A saintly sage is happy and pleasing in his external behaviour, whereas internally he is most grave and thoughtful. Because his knowledge is immeasurable and unlimited he is never disturbed, and thus in all respects he is like the tranquil waters of the unfathomable and unsurpassable ocean. [5]

During the rainy season the swollen rivers rush into the ocean, and during the dry summer the rivers, now shallow, severely reduce their supply of water; yet the ocean does not swell up during the rainy season, nor does it dry up in the hot summer. In the same way, a saintly devotee who has accepted the Supreme Personality of Godhead as the goal of his life sometimes will receive by providence great material opulence, and sometimes he will find himself materially destitute. However, such a devotee of the Lord does not rejoice in a flourishing condition, nor is he morose when poverty-stricken. [6]

One who has failed to control his senses immediately feels attraction upon seeing a woman’s form, which is created by the illusory energy of the Supreme Lord. Indeed, when the woman speaks with enticing words, smiles coquettishly and moves her body sensuously, his mind is immediately captured, and thus he falls blindly into the darkness of material existence, just as the moth maddened by the fire rushes blindly into its flames. [7]

A saintly person should accept only enough food to keep his body and soul together. He should go from door to door accepting just a little bit of food from each family. Thus he should practice the occupation of the honeybee. [9]

Just as the honeybee takes nectar from all flowers, big and small, an intelligent human being should take the essence from all religious scriptures. [10]

A saintly person should not think, ‘‘This food I will keep to eat tonight and this other food I can save for tomorrow.’’ In other words, a saintly person should not store foodstuffs acquired by begging. Rather, he should use his own hands as his plate and eat whatever fits on them. His only storage container should be his belly, and whatever conveniently fits into his belly should be his stock of food. Thus one should not imitate the greedy honeybee who eagerly collects more and more honey. [11]

A saintly person should never touch a young girl. In fact, he should not even let his foot touch a wooden doll in the shape of a woman. By bodily contact with a woman he will surely be captured by illusion, just as the elephant is captured by the she-elephant due to his desire to touch her body. [13]

A man possessing intelligent discrimination should not under any circumstances try to exploit the beautiful form of a woman for his sense gratification. Just as an elephant trying to enjoy a she-elephant is killed by other bull elephants also enjoying her company, one trying to enjoy a lady’s company can at any moment be killed by her other lovers who are stronger than he. [14]

A greedy person accumulates a large quantity of money with great struggle and pain, but the person who has struggled so much to acquire this wealth is not always allowed to enjoy it himself or give it in charity to others. The greedy man is like the bee who struggles to produce a large quantity of honey, which is then stolen by a man who will enjoy it personally or sell it to others. No matter how carefully one hides his hard-earned wealth or tries to protect it, there are those who are expert in detecting the whereabouts of valuable things, and they  will steal it. [15]

A saintly person dwelling in the forest in the renounced order of life should never listen to songs or music promoting material enjoyment. Rather, a saintly person should carefully study the example of the deer, who is bewildered by the sweet music of the hunter’s horn and is thus captured and killed. [17]

Becoming attracted to the worldly singing, dancing and musical entertainment of beautiful  women, even the great sage Risyasringa, the son of Mrigi, fell totally under their control, just like a pet amimal. [18]

Just as a fish, incited by the desire to enjoy its tongue, is fatally trapped on the fisherman’s hook, similarly, a foolish person is bewildered by the extremely disturbing urges of the tongue and thus is ruined. [19]

The prostitute felt disgusted with her material situation and thus became indifferent to it. Indeed, detachment acts like a sword, cutting to pieces the binding network of material hopes and desires. Now please hear from me the song sung by the prostitute in that situation. [28]

O King, just as a human being who is bereft of spiritual knowledge never desires to give up his false sense of proprietorship over many material things, similarly, a person who has not developed detachment never desires to give up the bondage of the material body. [29]

 Material desire is undoubtedly the cause of the greatest unhappiness, and freedom from such desire is the cause of the greatest happiness. Therefore, completely cutting off her desire to enjoy so-called lovers, Pingala very happily went to sleep. [44]




The saintly brahmana said : Everyone considers certain things within the material world to be most dear to him, and because of attachment to such things one eventually becomes miserable. One who understands this gives up material possessiveness and attachment and thus achieves unlimited happiness. [1]

 Once a group of large hawks who were unable to find any prey attacked another, weaker hawk who was holding some meat. At that time, being in danger of his life, the hawk gave up his meat and experienced actual happiness. [2]

 In family life, the parents are always in anxiety about their home, children and reputation. But I have nothing to do with these things. I do not worry at all about any family, and I do not care about honour and dishonour. I enjoy only the life of the soul, and I find love on the spiritual platform. Thus I wander the earth like a child. [3]

 In this world two types of people are free from all anxiety and merged in great happiness : one who is a retarded and childish fool and one who has approached the Supreme Lord, who is beyond the three modes of material nature. [4]

 O subduer of the enemy, I travel throughout the surface of the earth learning constantly about the nature of this world, and thus I personally witnessed the lesson of the young girl.

 When many people live together in one place there will undoubtedly be quarreling. And even if only two people live together there will be frivolous conversation and disagreement. Therefore, to avoid conflict, one should live alone, as we learn from the example of the bracelet of the young girl. [9-10]

 Having perfected the yoga sitting postures and conquered the breathing process, one should make the mind steady by detachment and the regulated practice of yoga. Thus one should carefully fix the mind on the single goal of yoga practice. [11]

 A saintly person should remain alone and constantly travel without any fixed residence. Being alert, he should remain secluded and should act in such a way that he is not recognized or noticed by others. Moving without companions, he should not speak more than required. [14]

 The Lord of the universe, Narayana, is the worshipable God of all living entities. Without extraneous assistance, the Lord creates this universe by His own potency, and at the time of annihilation the Lord destroys the universe through His personal expansion of time and withdraws all of the cosmos, including all the conditioned living entities, within Himself. Thus, His unlimited Self is the shelter and reservoir of all potencies. The subtle pradhana, the basis of all cosmic manifestation, is conserved within the Lord and is in this way not different from Him. In the aftermath of annihilation the Lord stands alone. [16]

 When the Supreme Personality of Godhead displays His own potency in the form of time and guides His material potencies, such as the mode of goodness, into a neutral condition of equilibrium, He remains as the supreme controller of that neutral state, called pradhana, as well as of the living entities. He is also the supreme worshipable object for all beings, including liberated souls, demigods and ordinary conditioned souls. The Lord is eternally free from any material designation, and He constitutes the totality of spiritual bliss, which one experiences by seeing the Lord’s spiritual form. The Lord thus exhibits the fullest meaning of the word ‘‘liberation’’. [17-18]

 O subduer of the enemies, at the time of creation the Personality of Godhead expands His own transcendental potency in the form of  time, and agitating His material energy, maya, composed of the three modes of material nature, He creates the mahat-tattva. [19]

According to great sages, that which is the basis of the three modes of material nature and which manifests the variegated universe is called the sutra or mahat-tattva. Indeed, this universe is resting within that mahat-tattva, and due to its potency the living entity undergoes material existence. [20]

 Just as from within himself the spider expands thread through its mouth, plays with it for some time and eventually swallows it, similarly, the Supreme Pesonality of Godhead expands His personal potency from within Himself. Thus, the Lord displays the network of cosmic manifestation, utilizes it according to His purpose and eventually withdraws it completely within Himself. [21]

 If out of love, hate or fear an embodied soul fixes his mind with intelligence and complete concentration upon a particular bodily form, he will certainly attain the form that he is meditating upon. [22]

 O King, from all these spiritual masters I have acquired great wisdom. Now please listen as I explain what I learned from my own body. [24]

 The material body is also my spiritual master because it teaches me detachment. Being
subject to creation and destruction, it always comes to a painful end. Thus, although using my body to acquire knowledge, I always remember that it will ultimately be consumed by others, and remaining detached, I move about this world. [25]

 A man who has many wives is constantly harassed by them. He is responsible for their maintenance, and thus all the ladies constantly pull him in different directions, each struggling for her self-interest. Similarly, the material senses harass the conditioned soul, pulling him in many different directions at once. On one side the tongue is pulling him to arrange tasty food; then thirst drags him to get a suitable drink. Simultaneously the sex organs clamor for satisfaction, and the sense of touch demands soft, sensuous objects. The belly harasses him until it is filled, the ears demand to hear pleasing sounds, the sense of smell hankers for pleasant aromas, and the fickle eyes clamor for pleasing sights. Thus the senses, organs and limbs, all desiring satisfaction, pull the living entity in many directions. [27]

 After many, many births and deaths one achieves the rare human form of life, which, although temporary, affords one of the opportunity to attain the highest perfection. Thus a sober human being should quickly endeavor for the ultimate perfection of life as long as his body, which is always subject to death, has not fallen down and died. After all, sense gratification is available even in the most abominable species of life, whereas Krishna consciousness is possible only for a human being. [29]

 Having learned from my spiritual masters, I remain situated in realization of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and, fully renounced and enlightened by realized spiritual knowledge, wander the earth without attachment or false ego. [30]

 Although the Absolute Truth is one without a second, the sages have described Him in many different ways. Therefore one may not be able to acquire very firm or complete knowledge from one spiritual master. [31]




One who is sleeping may see many objects of sense gratification in a dream, but such pleasurable things are merely creations of the mind and are thus ultimately useless. Similarly, the living entity who is asleep to his spiritual identity also sees many sense objects, but these innumerable objects of temporary gratification are creations of the Lord’s illusory potency and have no permanent existence. One who meditates upon them, impelled by the senses, uselessly engages his intelligence. [3]

 One who has fixed Me within his mind as the goal of life should give up activities based on sense gratification and should instead execute work governed by the regulative principles for advancement. When, however, one is fully engaged in searching out the ultimate truth of the soul, one should not accept the scriptural injunctions governing fruitive activities. [4]

 One who has accepted Me as the supreme goal of life should strictly observe the scriptural injunctions forbidding sinful activities and, as far as possible, should execute the injunctions prescribing minor regulative duties such as cleanliness. Ultimately, however, one should approach a bona fide spiritual master who is full in knowledge of Me as I am, who is peaceful, and who by spiritual elevation is not different from Me. [5]

 The servant or disciple of the spiritual master should be free from false prestige, never considering himself to be the doer. He should be active and never lazy and should give up all sense of proprietorship over the objects of the senses, including his wife, children, home and society. He should be endowed with feelings of loving friendship toward the spiritual master and should never become deviated or bewildered. The servant or disciple should always desire advancement in spiritual understanding, should not envy anyone and should always avoid useless conversation. [6]

 One should see one’s real self-interest in life in all circumstances and should therefore remain detached from wife, children, home, land, relatives, friends, wealth and so on. [7]

 The spiritual master can be compared to the lower kindling stick, the disciple to the upper kindling stick, and the instruction given by the guru to the third stick placed in between. The transcendental knowledge communicated from guru to disciple is compared to the fire arising from the contact of these, which burns the darkness of ignorance to ashes, bringing great happiness both to guru and disciple. [12]

By submissively hearing from an expert spiritual master, the expert disciple develops

pure knowledge, which repels the onslaught of material illusion arising from the three modes of material nature. Finally this pure knowledge itself ceases, just as fire ceases when the stock of fuel has been consumed. [13]

It is observed within the material world that sometimes even an intelligent person is not happy. Similarly, sometimes even a great fool is happy. The concept of becoming happy through expertly performing material activities is simply a useless exhibition of false egotism. [18]

When there is agitation and interaction of the material modes of nature, the living entities then describe Me in various ways such as all powerful time, the Self. Vedic knowledge , the universe, one’s own nature, religious ceremonies and so on.[ 34]



By chance, two birds have made a nest together in the same tree. The two birds are friends and are of a similar nature. One of them, however, is eating the fruits of the tree, whereas the other, who does not eat the fruits, is in a superior position due to His potency. [6]

A saintly sage ses with equal visin and therefore is not affected by that which is materially good or bad. Indeed , although the observes others performing good and bad work and speaking properly and improperly , the sage does not praise or criticize anyone. [ 16].

For the purpose of maintaining his body, a liberated sage should not act, speak or contemplate in terms of material good or bad. Rather, he should be detached in all material circumstances, and taking pleasure in self-realization, he should wander about engaged in this liberated life-style, appearing like a retarded person to outsiders. [17]

The Supreme Personality of Godhead said : O Uddhava, a saintly person is merciful and never injures others. Even if others are aggressive he is tolerant and forgiving toward all living entities. His strength and meaning in life come from the truth itself, he is free from all envy and jealousy, and his mind is equal in material happiness and distress. Thus, he dedicates his time to work for the welfare of all others. [29]

His intelligence is never bewildered by material desires, and he has controlled his senses. His behavior is always pleasing, never harsh and always exemplary, and he is free from possessiveness. He never endeavours in ordinary, worldly activities, and he strictly controls his eating. He, therefore, always remains peaceful and steady. A saintly person is thoughtful and accepts Me as his only shelter. [30]

Such a person is very cautious in the execution of his duties and is never subject to superficial transformations, because he is steady and noble, even in a distressing situation. He has conquered over the six material qualities–namely hunger, thirst, lamentation, illusion, old age and death. He is free from all desire for prestige and offers honour to others. He is expert in reviving the Krishna consciousness of others and therefore never cheats anyone. Rather, he is a well-wishing friend to all, being most merciful. Such a saintly person must be considered the most learned of men. [31]

My devotees may or may not know exactly what I am, who I am and how I exist, but if they worship Me with unalloyed love, then I consider them to be the best of devotees. [33]

My dear Uddhava, one can give up false pride and prestige by engaging in the following devotional activities. One may purify oneself by seeing, touching, worshiping, serving and offering prayers of glorification and obeisances to My form as the Deity and to My pure devotees. [34]

A devotee should never advertise his devotional activities; therefore his service will not be the cause of false pride. One should never use lamps that are offered to Me for other purposes simply because there is need of illumination, and similarly, one should never offer to Me anything that has been offered to or used by others. [40]

Whatever is most desired by one within this material world, and whatever is most dear
to oneself–one should offer that very thing to Me. Such an offering qualifies one for eternal life. [41] 

My dear Uddhava, I am personally the ultimate shelter and way of life for saintly liberated persons, and thus if one does not engage in My loving devotional service, which is made possible by associating with My devotees, then for all practical purposes, one possesses no effective means for escaping from material existence. [48]




The Supreme Personality of Godhead said : My dear Uddhava, by associating with My pure devotees one can destroy one’s attachment for all objects of material sense gratification. Such purifying association brings Me under the control of My devotee. One may perform the astanga-yoga system, engage in philosophical analysis of the elements of material nature, practice non-violence and other ordinary principles of piety, chant the Vedas, perform penances, take to the renounced order of life, execute sacrificial performances and dig wells, plant trees and perform other public welfare activities, give in charity, carry out severe vows, worship the demigods, chant confidential mantras, visit holy places or accept major and minor disciplinary injunctions, but even by performing such activities one does not bring Me under his control. [1-2]

 Therefore, My dear Uddhava, abandon the Vedic mantras as well as the procedures of supplementary Vedic literatures and their positive and negative injunctions. Disregard that which has been heard and that which is to be heard. Simply take shelter of Me alone, for I am the Supreme Personality of Godhead, situated within the heart of all conditioned souls. Take shelter of Me wholeheartedly, and by My grace be free from fear in all circumstances. [14-15]



A person should be attentive and grave and never lazy or morose. Mastering the yoga procedures of breathing and sitting properly, one should practice fixing the mind on Me at dawn, noon and sunset, and thus gradually the mind should be completely absorbed in  Me. [13]


With the dust of My devotees’ lotus feet I desire to purify the material worlds, which are situated within Me. Thus, I always follow the footsteps of My pure devotees, who are free from all personal desire, rapt in thought of My pastimes, peaceful, without any feelings of enmity, and of equal disposition everywhere. [16]

 Those who are without any desire for personal gratification, whose minds are always attached to Me, who are peaceful, without false ego and merciful to all living entities, and whose consciousness is never affected by opportunities for sense gratification–such persons enjoy in Me a happiness that cannot be known or achieved by those lacking such detachment from the material world. [17]

 My dear Uddhava, the unalloyed devotional service rendered to Me by My devotees brings Me under their control. I cannot be thus controlled by those engaged in mystic yoga, Sankhya philosophy, pious work, Vedic study, austerity or renunciation. [20]

 Only by practicing unalloyed devotional service with full faith in Me can one obtain Me, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. I am naturally dear to My devotees, who take Me as the only goal of their loving service. By engaging in such pure devotional service, even the dog-eaters can purify themselves from the contamination of their low birth. [21] 

Neither religious activities endowed with honesty and mercy nor knowledge obtained with great penance can completely purify one’s consciousness if they are bereft of loving service to Me. [22] 

Of all kinds of suffering and bondage arising from various attachments, none is greater than the suffering and bondage arising from attachment to women and intimate contact with those attached to women. [30]


Whatever mystic perfections can be achieved by good birth, herbs, austerities and mantras can all be achieved by devotional service to Me; indeed, one cannot achieve the actual perfection of yoga by any other means. [34]



Whatever power, beauty, fame, opulence, humility, renunciation, mental pleasure, fortune, strength, tolerance or spiritual knowledge there may be is simply an expansion of My opulence. [40]


The married order of life appeared from the loins of My universal form, and the celibate students came from My heart. The forest-dwelling retired order of life appeared from My chest, and the renounced order of life was situated within the head of My universal form. [14]

Peacefulness, self-control, austerity, cleanliness, satisfaction, tolerance, simple straightforwardness, devotion to Me, mercy and truthfulness are the natural qualities of the brahmanas. [16]

Dynamic power, bodily strength, determi-nation, heroism, tolerance, generosity, great endeavour, steadiness, devotion to the brahmanas and leadership are the natural qualities of the ksatriyas. [17]

Faith in Vedic civilization, dedication to charity, freedom from hypocrisy, service to the brahmanas and perpetually desiring to accumulate more money are the natural qualities of the vaisyas. [18]

Service without duplicity to the brahmanas, cows, demigods and other worshipable personalities, and complete satisfaction with whatever income is obtained in such service, are the natural qualities of sudras. [19]

Nonviolence, truthfulness, honesty, desire for the happiness and welfare of all others and freedom from lust, anger and greed constitute duties for all members of society. [21]

A brahmachari should always remain silent while bathing, eating, attending sacrificial performance, chanting japa or passing stool and urine. He should not cut his nails and hair, including the armpit and pubic hair. [24]

Those who are not married–sannyasis, vanaprasthas and brahmacharis–should never associate with women by glancing, touching, conversing, joking or sporting. Neither should they ever associate with any living entity engaged in sexual activities. [33]

My dear Uddhava, general cleanliness, washing the hands, bathing, performing religious services at sunrise, noon and sunset, worshiping Me, visiting holy places, chanting japa, avoiding that which is untouchable, uneatable or not to be discussed, and remembering My existence within all living entities as the Supersoul–these principle should be followed by all members of society through regulation of the mind, words and body. [34-35]

One who desires to establish family life should marry a wife of his own caste, who is beyond reproach and younger in age. If one desires to accept many wives he must marry them after the first marriage, and each wife should be of a successively lower caste. [39]

Just as the chief bull elephant protects all other elephants in his herd and defends himself as well, similarly, a fearless king, just like a father, must save all of the citizens from difficulty and also protect himself. [45]

An earthly king who protects himself and all citizens by removing all sins from his kingdom will certainly enjoy with Lord Indra in airplanes as brilliant as the sun. [46]

One in the grhastha order of life should daily worship the sages by Vedic study, the forefathers by offering the mantra svadha, the demigods by chanting svaha, all living entities by offering shares of one’s meals, and human beings by offering grains and water. Thus considering the demigods, sages, forefathers, living entities and human beings to be manifestations of My potency, one should daily perform these five sacrifices. [50]

The association of children, wife, relatives and friends is just like the brief meeting of travellers. With each change of body one is separated from all such associates, just as one loses the objects one possesses in dream when the dream is over. [53]

Deeply considering the actual situation, a liberated soul should live at home just like a guest, without any sense of proprietorship or false ego. In this way he will not be bound or entangled by domestic affairs. [54]



If the sannyasi desires to wear something besides a mere kaupina, he may use another cloth around his waist and hips to cover the kaupina. Otherwise, if there is no emergency, he should not accept anything besides his danda and waterpot. [15]

One who has not accepted the three internal disciplines of avoiding useless speech, avoiding useless activities and controlling the life air can never be considered a sannyasi merely because of his carrying bamboo rods. [17]

Rejecting those houses that are polluted and untouchable, one should approach without previous calculation seven houses and be satisfied with that which is obtained there by begging. According to necessity, one may approach each of the four occupational orders of society. [18]

Without any material attachment, with senses fully controlled, remaining enthusiastic, and satisfied in realization of the Supreme Lord and his own self, the saintly person should travel about the earth alone. Having equal vision everywhere, he should be steady on the spiritual platform. [20]

Dwelling in a safe and solitary place, his mind purified by constant thought of Me, the sage should concentrate on the soul alone, realizing it to be nondifferent from Me. [21]

Therefore, completely controlling the five senses and the mind by Krishna consciousness, a sage, having experienced spiritual bliss within the self, should live detached from insignificant material sense gratification. [23]

The sage should travel in sanctified places, by flowing rivers and within the solitude of mountains and forests. He should enter the cities, towns and pasturing grounds and approach ordinary working men only to beg his bare sustenance. [24]

One in the vanaprastha order of life should always practice taking charity from others, for one is thereby freed from illusion and quickly becomes perfect in spiritual life. Indeed, one who subsists on food grains obtained in such a humble manner purifies his existence. [25]

A learned transcendentalist dedicated to the cultivation of knowledge and thus detached from external objects, or My devotee who is detached even from desire for liberation–both neglect those duties based on external rituals or paraphernalia. Thus their conduct is beyond the range of rules and regulations. [28]

A saintly person should never let others frighten or disturb him and, similarly, should never frighten or disturb other people. He should tolerate the insults of others and should never himself belittle anyone. He should never create hostility with anyone for the sake of the material body, for he would thus be no better than an animal. [31]

The one Supreme Lord is situated within all material bodies and within everyone’s soul. Just as the moon is reflected in innumerable reservoirs of water, the Supreme Lord, although one, is present within everyone. Thus every material body is ultimately composed of the energy of the one Supreme Lord. [32]

Just as I, the Supreme Lord, execute regulative duties by My own free will, similarly, one who has realized knowledge of Me should maintain general cleanliness, purify his hands with water, take bath and execute other regulative duties not by force but by his own free will. [36]

A realized soul no longer sees anything as separate from Me, for his realized knowledge of Me has destroyed such illusory perception. Since the material body and mind were previously accustomed to this kind of perception, it may sometimes appear to recur; but at the time of death the self-realized soul achieves opulences equal to Mine. [37]

One who is detached from sense gratification, knowing its result to be miserable, and who desires spiritual perfection, but who has not seriously analyzed the process for obtaining Me, should approach a bona fide and learned spiritual master. [38

Until a devotee has clearly realized spiritual knowledge, he should continue with great faith and respect and without envy to render personal service to the guru, who is nondifferent from Me. [39]

One who has not controlled the six forms of illusion [lust, anger, greed, excitement, false pride and intoxication], whose intelligence, the leader of the senses, is extremely attached to material things, who is bereft of knowledge and detachment, who adopts the sannyasa order of life to make a living, who denies the worshipable demigods, his own self and the Supreme Lord within himself, thus ruining all religious principles, and who is still infected by material contamination, is deviated and lost both in this life and the next. [40-41]

 The main religious duties of a sannyasi are equanimity and nonviolence, whereas for the vanaprastha austerity and philosophical understanding of the difference betwen the body and soul are prominent. The main duties of a householder are to give shelter to all living entities and perform sacrifices, and the brahmachari is mainly engaged in serving the spiritual master. [42]

A householder may approach his wife for sex only at the time prescribed for begetting children. Otherwise, the householder should practice celibacy, austerity, cleanliness of mind and body, satisfaction in his natural position, and friendship toward all living entities. Worship of Me is to be practiced by all human beings, regardless of social or occupational divisions. [43]

 Thus, one who has purified his existence by execution of his prescribed duties, who fully understands My supreme position and who is endowed with scriptural and realized knowledge, very soon achieves Me. [46]



Those who have achieved complete perfection through philosophical and realized knowledge recognize My lotus feet to be the supreme transcendental object. Thus the learned tran-scendentalist is most dear to Me, and by his perfect knowledge he maintains Me in happiness. [3]

An intelligent person should see that any material activity is subject to constant transformation and that even on the planet of Lord Brahma there is thus simply unhappiness. Indeed, a wise man can understand that just as all that he has seen is temporary, similarly, all things within the universe have a beginning and an end. [18]

Firm faith in the blissful narrations of My pastimes, constant chanting of My glories, unwavering attachment to ceremonial worship of Me, praising Me through beautiful hymns, great respect for My devotional service, offering obeisances with the entire body, performing first-class worship of My devotees, consciousness of Me in all living entities, offering of ordinary, bodily activities in My devotional service, use of words to describe My qualities, offering the mind to Me, rejection of all material desires, giving up wealth for My devotional service, renouncing material sense gratification and happiness, and performing all desirable activities such as charity, sacrifice, chanting vows and austerities with the purpose of achieving Me–these constitute actual religious principles, by which those human beings who have actually surrendered themselves to Me automatically develop love for Me. What other purpose or goal could remain for My devotee? [20-24] 

Actual religious principles are stated to be those that lead one to My devotional service. Real knowledge is the awareness that reveals My all-pervading presence. Detachment is complete dis-interest in the objects of material sense gratification, and opulence is the eight mystic perfections, such as anima-siddhi. [27] 

The greatest charity is to give up all aggression toward others, and renunciation of lust is understood to be real austerity. Real heroism is to conquer one’s natural tendency to enjoy material life, and reality is seeing the Supreme Personality of Godhead everywhere. [37]

Real happiness is to transcend material happiness and unhappiness, and real misery is to be implicated in searching for sexual pleasure. A wise man is one who knows the process of freedom from bondage, and a fool is one who identifies with his material body and mind. The real path in life is that which leads to Me, and the wrong path is sense gratification, by which consciousness is bewildered. Actual heaven is the predominance of the mode of goodness, whereas hell is the predominance of ignorance. I am everyone’s true friend, acting as the spiritual master of the entire universe, and one’s home is the human body. My dear friend Uddhava, one who is enriched with good qualities is actually said to be rich, and one who is unsatisfied in life is actually poor. A wretched person is one who cannot control his senses, whereas one who is not attached to sense gratification is a real controller. One who attaches himself to sense gratification is the opposite, a slave. Thus, Uddhava, I have elucidated all of the matt

ers about which you inquired. There is no need for a more elaborate description of these good and bad qualities, since to constantly see good and bad is itself a bad quality. The best quality is to transcend material good and evil. [41-45]



Among these three paths, jnana-yoga, the path of philosophical speculation, is recommended for those who are disgusted with material life and are thus detached from ordinary, fruitive activities. Those who are not disgusted with material life, having many desires yet to fulfill, should seek perfection through the path of karma-yoga. [7]

 If somehow or other by good fortune one develops faith in hearing and chanting My glories, such a person, being neither very disgusted with nor attached to material life, should achieve perfection through the path of loving devotion to Me. [8]

 The residents of both heaven and hell desire human birth on the earth planet because human life facilitates the achievement of transcendental knowledge and love of Godhead, whereas neither heavenly nor hellish bodies efficiently provide such opportunities. [12]

A human being who is wise should never desire promotion to heavenly planets or residence in hell. Indeed, a human being should also never desire permanent residence on the earth, for by such absorption in the material body one becomes foolishly negligent of one’s actual self-interest. [13]

The human body, which can award all benefit in life, is automatically obtained by the laws of nature, although it is a very rare achievement. This human body can be compared to a perfectly constructed boat having the spiritual master as the captain and the instructions of the Personality of Godhead as favourable winds impelling it on its course. Considering all these advantages, a human being who does not utilize his human life to cross the ocean of material existence must be considered the killer of his own soul. [17]

Having awakened faith in the narrations of My glories, being disgusted with all material activities, knowing that all sense gratification leads to misery, but still being unable to renounce all sense enjoyment, My devotee should remain happy and worship Me with great faith and conviction. Even though he is sometimes engaged in sense enjoyment, My devotee knows that all sense gratification leads to a miserable result, and he sincerely repents such activities. [27-28]

 When an intelligent person engages constantly in worshiping Me through loving devotional service as described by Me, his heart becomes firmly situated in Me. Thus all material desires within the heart are destroyed. [29] 

The knot in the heart is pierced, all misgivings are cut to pieces and the chain of fruitive actions is terminated when I am seen as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. [30] 

Therefore, for a devotee engaged in My loving service, with mind fixed on Me, the cultivation of knowledge and renunciation is generally not the means of achieving the highest perfection within this world. [31] 

Everything that can be achieved by fruitive activities, penance, knowledge, detachment, mystic yoga, charity, religious duties and all other means of perfecting life is easily achieved by My devotee through loving service unto Me. If somehow or other My devotee desires promotion to heaven, liberation, or residence in My abode, he easily achieves such benedictions. [32-33]

 Because My devotees possess saintly behaviour and deep intelligence, they completely dedicate themselves to Me and do not desire anything besides Me. Indeed, even if I offer them liberation from birth and death, they do not accept it. [34]



Impure things may or may not impose sinful reactions upon a person, depending on that person’s strength or weakness, intelligence, wealth, location and physical condition. [11]

The self can be cleansed by bathing, charity, austerity, age, personal strength, purificatory rituals, prescribed duties and, above all, by remembrance of Me. The brahmana and other twice-born men should be duly purified before performing their specific activities. [14]

A mantra is purified when chanted with proper knowledge, and one’s work is purified when offered to Me. Thus by purification of the place, time, substance, doer, mantras and work, one becomes religious, and by negligence of these six items one is considered irreligious. [15]

Just as a foolish businessman gives up his real wealth in useless business speculation, foolish persons give up all that is actually valuable in life and instead pursue promotion to material heaven, which although pleasing to hear about is actually unreal, like a dream. Such bewildered persons imagine within their hearts that they will achieve all material blessings. [31]



Sri Uddhava inquired : Although nature and the living entity are constitutionally distinct, O Lord Krishna, there appears to be no difference between them, because they are found residing within one another. Thus the soul appears to be within nature and nature within the soul. [26]

 Sri Uddhava said : O Supreme Master, the intelligence of those dedicated to fruitive activities is certainly deviated from You. Please explain to me how such persons accept superior and inferior bodies by their materialistic activities and then give up such bodies. [34]

 Although the illumination of a lamp consists of innumerable rays of light undergoing constant creation, transformation and destruction, a person with illusory intelligence who sees the light for a moment will speak falsely, saying, ‘‘This is the light of the lamp.’’ As one observes a flowing river, ever-new water passes by and goes far away, yet a foolish person, observing one point in the river, falsely states, ‘‘This is the water of the river.’’ Similarly, although the material body of a human being is constantly undergoing transformation, those who are simply wasting their lives falsely think and say that each particular stage of the body is the person’s real identity. [44]

By the death of one’s father or grandfather one can surmise one’s own death, and by the birth of one’s son one can understand the condition of one’s own birth. A person who thus realistically understands the creation and destruction of material bodies is no longer subject to these dualities. [48]

Sri Uddhava said : O best of all speakers, please explain to me how I may properly understand this. [59]


O soul of the universe, the conditioning of one’s personality in material life is very strong, and therefore it is very difficult even for learned men to tolerate the offenses committed against them by ignorant people. Only Your devotees, who are fixed in Your loving service and who have achieved peace by residing at Your lotus feet, are able to tolerate such offenses. [60]


Lord Sri Krishna said : O disciple of Brhaspati, there is virtually no saintly man in this world capable of resettling his own mind after it has been disturbed by the insulting words of uncivilized men. [2] 

Sharp arrows which pierce one’s chest and reach the heart do not cause as much suffering as the arrows of harsh, insulting words that become lodged within the heart when spoken by uncivilized men. [3] 

Generally, the wealth of misers never allows them any happiness. In this life it causes their self-torment, and when they die it sends them to hell. [15] 

Whatever pure fame is possessed by the famous and whatever praiseworthy qualities are found in the virtuous are destroyed by even a small amount of greed, just as one’s attractive physical beauty is ruined by a trace of white leprosy. [16] 

Theft, violence, speaking lies, duplicity, lust, anger, perplexity, pride, quarreling, enmity, faithlessness, envy and the dangers caused by women, gambling and intoxication are the fifteen undesirable qualities that contaminate men because of greed for wealth. Although these qualities are undesirable, men falsely ascribe value to them. One desiring to achieve the real benefit of life should, therefore, remain aloof from undesirable material wealth. [18-19] 

Even a man’s brothers, wife, parents and friends united with him in love will immediately break off their affectionate relationships and become enemies over a single coin. [20] 

For even a small amount of money these relatives and friends become very agitated and their anger is inflamed. Acting as rivals, they quickly give up all sentiments of goodwill and will reject one at a moment’s notice, even to the point of committing murder. [21] 

Charity, prescribed duties, observance of major and minor regulative principles, hearing from scripture, pious works and purifying vows all have as their final aim the subduing of the mind. Indeed, concentration of the mind on the Supreme is the highest yoga. [46] 

If one’s mind is perfectly fixed and pacified, then tell me what need does one have to perform ritualistic charity and other pious rituals? And if one’s mind remains uncontrolled, lost in ignorance, then of what use are these engagements for him? [47] 

If we accept time as the cause of happiness and distress, that experience sitll cannot apply to the spirit soul, since time is a manifestation of the Lord’s spiritual potency and the living entities are also expansions of the Lord’s spiritutal potency manifesting through time. Certainly a fire does not burn its own flames or sparks, nor does the cold harm its own snowflakes or hail. In fact, the spirit soul is transcendental and beyond the experience of material happiness and distress. At whom, therefore, should one become angry? [56] 

No other force besides his own mental confusion makes the soul experience happiness and distress. His perception of friends, neutral parties and enemies and the whole material life he builds around this perception are simply created out of ignorance. [60]


Lord Sri Krishna said : Now I shall describe to you the science of Sankhya, which has been perfectly established by ancient authorities. By understanding this science a person can immediately give up the illusion of material duality. [1]


The Supreme Personality of Godhead said : O best among men, please listen as I describe to you how the living entity attains a particular nature by association with individual material modes. [1] 

Mind and sense control, tolerance, discrimination, sticking to one’s prescribed duty, truthfulness, mercy, careful study of the past and future, satisfaction in any condition, generosity, renunciation of sense gratification, faith in the spiritual master, being embarrassed at improper action, charity, simplicity, humbleness and satisfaction within oneself are qualities of the mode of goodness.

Material desire, great endeavor, audacity, dissatisfaction even in gain, false pride, praying for material advancement, considering oneself different and better than others, sense gratification, rash eagerness to fight, a fondness for hearing oneself praised, the tendency to ridicule others, advertising one’s own prowess and justifying one’s actions by one’s strength are qualities of the mode of passion.

Intolerant anger, stinginess, speaking without scriptual authority, violent hatred, living as a parasite, hypocrisy, chronic fatigue, quarrel, lamentation, delusion, unhappiness, depression, sleeping too much, false expectations, fear and laziness constitute the major qualities of the mode of ignorance. [2-4] 

A person exhibiting qualities such as self-control is understood to be predominantly in the mode of goodness. Similarly, a passionate person is recognized by his lust, and one in ignorance is recognized by qualities such as anger. [9] 

When the mode of ignorance conquers passion and goodness, it covers one’s consciousness and makes one foolish and dull. Falling into lamentation and illusion, a person in the mode of ignorance sleeps excessively, indulges in false hopes, and displays violence toward others. [15]

 Residence in the forest is in the mode of goodness, residence in a town is in the mode of passion, residence in a gambling house displays the quality of ignorance, and residence in a place where I reside is transcendental. [25] 

A worker free of attachment is in the mode of goodness, a worker blinded by personal desire is in the mode of passion, and a worker who has completely forgotten how to distinguish right from wrong is in the mode of ignorance. But a worker who has taken shelter of Me is understood to be transcendental to the modes of nature. [26] 

Faith directed toward spiritual life is in the mode of goodness, faith rooted in fruitive work is in the mode of passion, faith residing in irreligious activities is in the mode of ignorance, but faith in My devotional service is purely transcendental. [27]

Happiness derived from the self is in the mode of goodness, happiness based on sense gratification is in the mode of passion, and happiness based on delusion and degradation is in the mode of ignorance. But that happiness found within Me is transcendental. [29]

 Therefore, having achieved this human form of life, which allows one to develop full knowledge, those who are intelligent should free themselves from all contamination of the modes of nature and engage exclusively in loving service to Me. [33]

 A wise sage, free from all material association and unbewildered, should subdue his senses and worship Me. He should conquer the modes of passion and ignorance by engaging himself only with things in the mode of goodness.[ 34]



What is the use of a big education or the practice of austerities and renunciation, and what is the use of studying religious scriptures, of living in solitude and silence, if, after all that, one’s mind is stolen by a woman? [12]

Yet even one who theoretically understands the actual nature of the body should never associate with women or with men attached to women. After all, the contact of the senses with their objects inevitably agitates the mind. [22] 

Because the mind is not disturbed by that which is neither seen nor heard, the mind of a person who restricts the material senses will automatically be checked in its material activities and become pacified. [23] 

Therefore one should never let his senses associate freely with women or with men attached to women. Even those who are highly learned cannot trust the six enemies of the mind; what to speak then, of foolish persons like me. [24] 

My devotees fix their minds on Me and do not depend upon anything material. They are always peaceful, endowed with equal vision, and free from possessiveness, false ego, duality and greed. [27] 

What more remains to be accomplished for the perfect devotee after achieving devotional service unto Me, the Supreme Absolute Truth, whose qualities are innumerable and who is the embodiment of all ecstatic experience? [30]



One should worship Me in the form of water by offering water itself. Actually, whatever is offered to Me with faith by My devotee–even if only a little water–is most dear to Me. [17]

 Even very opulent presentations do not satisfy Me if they are offered by nondevotees. But I am pleased by any insignificant offering made by My loving devotees, and I am certainly most pleased when nice presentations of fragrant oil, incense, flowers and palatable foods are offered with love. [18]

 Placing his head at the feet of the Deity, he should then stand with folded hands before the Lord and pray, ‘‘O my Lord, please protect me, who am surrendered unto You. I am most fearful of this ocean of material existence, standing as I am in the mouth of death.’’ [46]


The Supreme Personality of Godhead said : One should neither praise nor criticize the conditioned nature and activities of other persons. Rather, one should see this world as simply the combination of material nature and the enjoying souls, all based on the one Absolute Truth. [1]

 That which did not exist in the past and will not exist in the future also has no existence of its own for the period of its duration, but is only a superficial designation. In My opinion, whatever is created and revealed by something else is ultimately only that other thing. [21]

 Although thus not existing in reality, this manifestation of transformations created from the mode of passion appears real because the self-manifested, self-luminous Absolute Truth exhibits Himself in the form of the material variety of the senses, the sense objects, the mind and the elements of physical nature. [22]

For one who has properly realized My personal identity as the Supreme Godhead, what credit is there if his senses–mere products of the material modes–are perfectly concentrated in meditation? And on the other hand, what blame is incurred if his senses happen to become agitated? Indeed, what does it mean to the sun if the clouds come and go? [25]

Just as an improperly treated disease recurs and gives repeated distress to the patient, the mind that is not completely purified of its perverted tendencies will remain attached to material things and repeatedly torment the imperfect yogi. [28]

An ordinary living entity performs material work and is transformed by the reaction to such work. Thus he is driven by various desires to continue working fruitively up to the very moment of his death. A wise person, however, having experienced his own constitutional bliss, gives up all material desires and does not engage in fruitive work. [30]

 The wise man, whose consciousness is fixed in the self, does not even notice his own bodily activities. While standing, sitting, walking, lying down, urinating, eating or performing other bodily functions, he understands that the body is acting according to its own nature. [31]

 When the sun rises it destroys the darkness covering men’s eyes, but it does not create the objects they then see before them, which in fact were existing all along. Similarly, potent and factual realization of Me will destroy the darkness covering a person’s true consciousness. [34]

 The physical body of the endeavouring yogi who is not yet mature in his practice may sometimes be overcome by various disturbances. Therefore the following process is reco-mmended. [38]

 Some of these obstructions may be counteracted by yogic meditation or by sitting postures, practiced together with concentration on controlled breathing, and others may be counteracted by special austerities, mantras or medicinal herbs. [39]

 These inauspicious disturbances can be gradually removed by constant remembrance of Me, by congregational hearing and chanting of My holy names, or by following in the footsteps of the great masters of yoga. [40]


O lotus-eyed Lord, generally those yogis who try to steady the mind experience frustration because of their inability to perfect the state of trance. Thus they weary in their attempt to bring the mind under control. [2]

Therefore, O lotus-eyed Lord of the universe, swanlike men happily take shelter of Your lotus feet, the source of all transcendental ecstasy. But those who take pride in their accomplishments in yoga and karma fail to take shelter of You and are defeated by Your illusory energy. [3]

 The Supreme Personality of Godhead said : Yes, I shall describe to you the principles of devotion to Me, by executing which a mortal human being will conquer unconquerable death. [8]

 Always remembering Me, one should perform all his duties for Me without becoming impetuous. With mind and intelligence offered to Me, one should fix his mind in attraction to My devotional service. [9]

 One should take shelter of holy places where My saintly devotees reside, and one should be guided by the exemplary activities of My devotees, who appear among the demigods, demons and human beings. [10]

 Either alone or in public gatherings, with singing, dancing and other exhibitions of royal opulence, one should arrange to celebrate those holy days, ceremonies and festivals set aside specially for My worship. [11]

 With a pure heart one should see Me, the Supreme Soul within all beings and also within oneself, to be both unblemished by anything material and also present everywhere, both externally and internally, just like the omnipresent sky. [12]

 O brilliant Uddhava, one who thus views all living entities with the idea that I am present within each of them, and who by taking shelter of this divine knowledge offers due respect to everyone, is considered actually wise. Such a man sees equally the brahmana and the outcaste, the thief and the charitable promoter of brahminical culture, the sun and the tiny sparks of fire, the gentle and the cruel. [13-14]

 For him who constantly meditates upon My presence within all persons, the bad tendencies of rivalry, envy and abusiveness, along with false ego, are very quickly destroyed. [15]

 Disregarding the ridicule of one’s companions, one should give up the bodily conception and its accompanying embarrassment. One should offer obeisances before all–even the dogs, outcastes, cows and asses–falling flat upon the ground like a rod. [16]

 Indeed, I consider this process–using one’s mind, words and bodily functions for realizing Me within all living beings–to be the best possible method of spiritual enlightenment. [19]

 My dear Uddhava, because I have personally established it, this process of devotional service unto Me is transcendental and free from any material motivation. Certainly a devotee never suffers even the slightest loss by adopting this process. [20]

 O Uddhava, greatest of saints, in a dangerous situation an ordinary person cries, becomes fearful and laments, although such useless emotions do not change the situation. But activities offered to Me without personal motivation, even if they are externally useless, amount to the actual process of religion. [21]  

A person who gives up all fruitive activities and offers himself entirely unto Me, eagerly desiring to render service unto Me, achieves liberation from birth and death and is promoted to the status of sharing My own opulences. [34]


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