Shrimad Bhagavad Gita As It Is -Shri Shrimad A.C Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Attaining the Supreme
Chapter 8: Verse-16
ä-brahma-bhuvanäl lokäh punar ävartino ’rjuna
From the highest planet in the material world down to the lowest, all are places of misery wherein repeated birth and death take place. But one who attains to My abode, O son of Kunti, never takes birth again.
All kinds of yogis—karma, jnäna, hatha, etc.—eventually have to attain devotional perfection in bhakti-yoga, or krsna consciousness, before they can go to Krsna’s transcendental abode and never return. Those who attain the highest material planets, the planets of the demigods, are again subjected to repeated birth and death. As persons on earth are elevated to higher planets, people on higher planets such as Brahmaloka, Candraloka and Indraloka fall down to earth. The practice of sacrifice called pancägni-vidyä, recommended in the Chändogya Upanisad, enables one to achieve Brahmaloka, but if, on Brahmaloka, one does not cultivate krsna consciousness, then he must return to earth. Those who progress in krsna consciousness on the higher planets are gradually elevated to higher and higher planets and at the time of universal devastation are transferred to the eternal spiritual kingdom. Sridhara Svämi, in his commentary on Bhagavad-gita, quotes this verse:
brahmanä saha te sarve sampräpte pratisaïcare
“When there is devastation of this material universe, Brahmä and his devotees, who are constantly engaged in krsna consciousness, are all transferred to the spiritual universe and to specific spiritual planets according to their desires.”
- ä-brahma-bhuvanät=up to the Brahmaloka planet; lokäh=the planetary systems; punah=again; ävartinah=returning; arjuna=O Arjuna; mäm=unto Me; upetya=arriving; tu=but; kaunteya=O son of Kunti; punah janma=rebirth; na=never; vidyate=takes place.