Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana Book 1 Chapter 2:15-28

Book 1: Chapter 2

Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana: Book 1: Chapter 2: Verses 15-28
Glory of the Lord's narrative and of Devotion to Him

The learned, who are armed with the sword of constant meditation on Him cut asunder the hard knot of Karma therewith. Who, then, would not take delight in His stories? By resorting to holy places of pilgrimage, O Brahmanas, one obtains the privilege of waiting on exalted souls and thereby successively develops a desire for hearing the stories of Bhagavan Vasudeva (Sri Krsna), faith in and a relish for such stories. Sri Krsna is a disinterested friend of the virtuous and His praises sanctify those who listen to or sing them. He abides in the heart of those who hear His stories and uproots the evil propensities of their mind. When the evil propensities are well-nigh eradicated through the constant service of His devotees (or the day-to-day study of Srimad Bhagavata), there wells up abiding devotion to the Lord of excellent fame. The mind is then freed from passions such as lust and greed, which have their root in Rajas and Tamas, and established in Sattva, attains purity. In this way, when one is rid of all worldly attachment through loving devotion to the Lord, and the mind is filled with delight, one realizes the truth relating to God as a matter of course. The moment a man sees God as his very self the knot of ignorance in his heart is broken asunder, all his doubts are dispersed and the entire stock of his Karmas gets liquidated. That is why with utmost delight the wise constantly practise devotion to Lord Vasudeva which purifies the soul. Sattva, Rajas and Tamas are the three attributes or modes of Prakrti (Primordial Matter); assuming these for the preservation, creation and destruction of this universe, the one Supreme Person severally bears the names of Hari (Visnu), Virinci (Brahma) and Nara (Siva).

Yet the supreme good of men flows from Sri Hari alone, whose body consists of pure Sattva. Just as smoke is higher (more active) than wood, which is an earthly substance (and hence inert and dull), and higher than smoke is fire, which is associated with many sacrificial acts recommended in the three Vedas, even so Rajas (the principle of motion or activity) is superior to Tamas (darkness or inertia) and even higher than Rajas is Sattva (the principle of light or knowledge), with the help of which one is able to realize God. Of yore sages worshipped for their salvation Bhagavan Visnu alone, who is pure Sattva personified. Even now those who follow in their footsteps likewise get qualified for blessedness. Those seeking liberation worship Bhagavan Narayana and His part manifestations, all of whom are so gentle in aspect, leaving alone the lords of evil spirits (Bhairava and others), who possess a terrible form, though not reviling them. Those, however, who possess a Rajasika or Tamasika disposition and are seekers of wealth, power and progeny, worship the manes, evil spirits and the lords of created beings, possessing as they do a character similar to theirs. The Vedas ultimately treat of Bhagavan Vasudeva; the sacrifices themselves aim at the attainment of Vasudeva; the various Yogas eventually lead to Vasudeva; and all sorts of rituals too have their end in Vasudeva.



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