Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana Book 4 Chapter 29:14-29

Book 4: Chapter 29

Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana: Book 4: Chapter 29: Verses 14-29
The Dialogue between king Pracinabarhi and the sage Narada (continued)

The membrum virile is the western gate called Asuri; the act of copulation is the territory called Gramaka (which is only another name for carnal delight). The faculty of procreation has been spoken of as (a companion of Puranjana under the name of) Durmada; while the anus has been referred to under the name of Nirrti (the other gate in the west). The Infernal region is the territory called Vaisasa, while the organ of defecation (located in the rectum) is the companion named Lubdhaka. (Now) hear from me about the two entrances leading to blind alleys. They are the hands and feet wherewith the human soul severally works and moves about. (The region of) the heart is the gynaeceum and the mind has been spoken of as (the principal waiter in the gynaeceum under the name of) Visuci (Visucina). Identifying itself with the qualities (Sattva, Rajas and Tamas) of the mind, the Jiva gives way herein severally to complacence, joy and infatuation. According as the equilibrium of the intellect is disturbed (in the dreaming state) or it disturbs the senses in its turn (in the waking state), the Jiva (the embodied soul), that is affected by its qualities, is compelled to follow its changes, although (by its essential nature) the Jiva is a (mere) witness. The body is the chariot having the senses of perception for its horses and coursing swiftly (on the face of it) like the year, though (really) motionless. The two varieties of Karma (good and evil actions) are its two wheels; the three Gunas (Sattva, Rajas and Tamas) are its three flagstaffs and the five vital airs (Praha, Apana, Vyana, Udana and Samana) are its five cords. The mind is its (single) rein; the intellect, the charioteer; the heart, the seat (for the occupant of the chariot); the pairs of opposites ( just as joy and sorrow, honour and ignominy and so on), the poles (to which the yoke is fixed); the objects of the five senses, the recesses (into which the weapons are deposited); the seven constituent elements (viz., chyle, blood, flesh, fat, bone, marrow and semen) make the seven protective sheaths; and the five organs of action (the tongue, the hands and feet and the organs of copulation and defecation) are its five kinds of outward motion. (In this way) the Jiva runs after the mirage (of sense-gratification), followed by the ten Indriyas (the five senses of perception and the five organs of action) and the mind (the inner sense) as his army and unlawfully enjoying the five forms of sensuous pleasure, which have been figuratively spoken of as the slaughtering of animals. The year, which symbolizes the (passage of) time, is (referred to under the name of) Capdavega (the chief of the Gandharvas); the days and nights (comprising the year) have been spoken of as the three hundred and sixty male and the same number of female Gandharvas, forming his retinue, who steal the life (of a human being) by rotation. Old age is personified as the daughter of Kala (Time), whom the world does not welcome. Death in the person of the Yavana chief (Bhaya) accepted her as a sister for (help in) the destruction of the world. Mental anguishes and physical disorders are the Yavanas, the mobilized troops (of the Yavana chief). And the fever of two kinds[1] is (personified as) Prajwara (the brother of the Yavana chief) who is described as having a swift career in tormenting living beings. Afflicted thus by manifold sufferings, brought about by divine agencies or other fellow. beings as well as those relating to one's own body or mind, and enveloped in ignorance, the Jiva dwells in the (human) body for a hundred years, bound by the sense of 'I' and 'mine'. (Essentially) attributeless, the Jiva ascribes to itself the qualities of the vital airs, the Indriyas and the mind and remains contemplating on the trivial pleasures of sense and performing actions of various kinds (in order to secure them). (Thus) not realizing the Lord, its supreme teacher and very self, when the Jiva, that is (really) self-seeing, gets attached to the modes of Prakrti, it identifies itself with those qualities and helplessly performs Sattvika, Rajasika and Tamasika actions and is born (in the various species of life) according to those actions. Sometimes through Sattvika actions it attains to spheres abounding in light; now (through Rajasika pursuits) it goes to worlds which lead to suffering and involve exertion through action and now (through Tamasika actions) it is hurled into regions dense with darkness (ignorance) and sorrow. The deluded Jiva is sometimes (born as) a male, now (as) a female, and now it is (born) without sex either as a god or as a human being or in the sub-human species, the birth being determined by its past actions and the mode of Prakrti (predominating in it at the time of death preceding that birth).



  1. Sitajwara (fever accompanied with fits of cold) and Dahaiwara (inflammatory lever) are the two types of fever obviously referred to here.

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