Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana Book 7 Chapter 13:17-29

Book 7: Chapter 13

Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana: Book 7: Chapter 13: Verses 17-29
The course of conduct prescribed for a Samnyasi and a dialogue between an Avadhuta and Prahrada

Lying supine as you do, O holy one l you surely and obviously own no riches, from which alone follows (all enjoyment). (Pray,) tell us, if you deem fit, O Brahmana, the reason why this body of yours is (so) corpulent; even though you indulge in no luxury. Learned able-bodied, endowed with a penetrating vision and possessing a wonderful and charming eloquence, you remain lying down undisturbed while the world is (actively) doing work, even though you perceive everything clearly. Narada continued : Directly questioned thus by Prahrada (the ruler of the Daityas) and captivated by his nectar like speech, the great ascetic (Lord Dattatreya) smilingly addressed him (as follows).

The Brahmana replied : Esteemed as you are of the righteous (wise), O chief of the demons, you undoubtedly know by your spiritual insight (all) this, viz., the consequences of men's activity and cessation from activity. Ever present in your heart by virtue of your absolute (motiveless) devotion, the glorious (self-effulgent) Lord Narayana dispels your ignorance even as the sun disperses (external) darkness. Nevertheless, O king, we (proceed to) answer your questions in the light of what we have heard (on the subject from the wise). For, you deserve to be respected by (all) those seeking the purification of (their) heart. Impelled to actions by the stream of Avidity, which brings in its train a succession of births (and deaths) and which cannot be sated with adequate enjoyments I have been thrown into various wombs (states of existence). Wandering about (from one species of life to another) by force of actions I have been luckily endowed with this (human) body. which leads to heaven (through virtuous deeds), to final beatitude (through spiritual enlightenment or Devotion), to (birth in) the lower order of beings (through unrighteousness) and to this (human) life again (through a mixed type of actions). Perceiving in this life too the frustration of married couples undertaking pursuits (of various kinds) for (securing) happiness and driving away calamities, I have ceased from all activity.

Bliss constitutes the (very) essence of this Self and cessation from all activity is the medium of its manifestation. Realizing (all) enjoyments to be the creation of fancy (alone), I remain lying down (supine), reaping the fruit of destiny. (26) Thus forgetting the object of its pursuit, viz., happiness, which is the (very) essence of its being and is eternally dwelling in it, the Jiva (embodied soul) actually undergoes transmigration-consisting of diverse states of existence (such as gods, human beings and the lower orders of creation) and (so) terrible (being characterized by birth, death, old age and so on)-through duality, which is (really) non-existent. (Even) as an ignorant man impelled by the longing for water may run after a mirage, leaving (actual) water covered with duck weeds etc., sprung from (that very) water, a man seeking happiness (the object of his pursuit) elsewhere than his own Self runs after the objects of senses. Fruitless are the actions repeatedly done by him who, though unaided by Providence, seeks through his body etc.,-which are controlled by Fate-happiness and cessation of suffering for himself.



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