Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana Book 3 Chapter 31:14-21

Book 3: Chapter 31

Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana: Book 3: Chapter 31: Verses 14-21
The stages of growth of a human embryo

Though bodiless (in reality), I appear as clothed in a body made up of the five elements and as consisting of the lndriyas, the Gunas (modes of Prakrti),the objects of senses and the ego (a reflection of the intelligent Spirit). Therefore, I adore the all-knowing Supreme Person, the Controller of both Prakrti (Matter) and Purusa (Spirit), whose glory can never be obscured by such veils (the body etc.). Having forgotten his own self under the influence of the Lord's Maya, the embodied soul traverses the path of Samsara (transmigration)-strewn with numerous shackles of Karma, having their source in the three Gunas-undergoing hardships of many kinds. By what other expedient, then, than through the grace of that Supreme Being can he expect to realize his true nature? Who else than that Lord has bestowed upon me this knowledge of the past, present and future? For it is He who dwells in all animate and inanimate beings as the Inner Controller, who is no other than a part manifestation of the Lord Himself. Therefore, for soothing our threefold agony it is Him that we adore-we who are playing the role of a Jiva as a result of our Karma (destiny). Fallen into a sink of blood, faeces and urine within the abdomen of another body (the body of the mother) and with his own body scorched by the (mother's) gastric fire, this embodied soul (my own self) is anxious to get out of it, counting his months (the period of gestation). Oh, when shall this wretched soul be released (from this confinement), O Lord? Overflowing with compassion, it is Your peerless Self, 0 Lord, that has imparted to this creature, who is (hardly) ten months old, such (incomparable) wisdom. May that Protector of the afflicted (Yourself) be pleased with His own (benevolent) act (the bestowal of wisdom); for who can ever repay His obligations except by joining his palms( out of gratitude)? The other type of embodied souls (viz., birds, beasts and soon) perceives (experiences) by instinct only the agreeable and disagreeable sensations in its body. I, however, endowed as I am with a (human) body capable of practising self-control (and other spiritual disciplines), behold that most ancient Person, both without and within my heart, by virtue of reason conferred on me by the selfsame Person, who is as manifest as my own self, referred to as 'I' Though living. in this womb a life full of numerous troubles, O Lord, I have no desire to get out of it and descend into the pitfall of the outside world; for the Lord's (Your) Maya overtakes the soul who goes there, and in the wake of Maya appear the false notion of 'I' (with reference to the body) and the consequent cycle of births and deaths. Therefore, having installed (in my heart) the feet of Lord Visnu and shaking off all distraction of mind, I shall quickly redeem myself from the ocean of worldly existence with the help of reason, which is my greatest friend, so that this calamity (in the shape of transmigration), entailing many rounds of gestation, may not befall me again.



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