Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana Book 7 Chapter 1:1-12

Book 7: Chapter 1

Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana: Book 7: Chapter 1: Verses 1-12
A dialogue between Narada and Yudhisthira : the story of Jaya and Vijaya

The king (Pariksit) submitted : How did the Lord, who is alike to everyone and is the beloved friend of (all) created beings, kill the demons (the sons of Diti) for the sake of Indra like a partial being, O holy one? Indeed He who is the very embodiment of highest bliss could not have any (selfish) end to be served by the hosts of gods and in no case could He who is untainted by the Gunas (modes of Prakrti) actually have any specific grudge against, much less fear of, the demons. In this way, O exceptionally blessed one, a grave doubt has arisen in our mind with regard to the excellences of Lord Narayana, which you should kindly resolve. Sri Suka replied : Well have you asked, O great king (Pariksit), a question relating to the wonderful and most sacred story of Sri Hari, which is replete with the glory of His devotees (like Prahrada), nay, which goes to intensify one's devotion to the Lord and which is sung by sages like Narada. Bowing to (my father,) the sage Krsna Dwaipayana (Vedavyasa), I shall (accordingly) narrate the story of Sri Hari. Though really transcending Prakrti and (therefore) beyond the (three) Gunas (modes of Prakrti), unborn and devoid of (a material) form, the Lord assumed the role of a chastiser in relation to those deserving"punishment by presiding over the Gunas of His own Maya (Prakrti). Sattva (harmony), Rajas (activity) and Tamas (inertia) are the adjuncts of Prakrti (Matter) and not of the Spirit. Their decline or growth, O king (Pariksit), is not simultaneous as a matter of fact. Conforming to the spirit of the times, He fosters the gods and the Rsis (sages) when (the quality of) Sattva is in the ascendant,the Asuras (demons) when (the quality of) Rajas is predominant, and the Yaksas (a class of demigods) and the Raksasas (ogres) when (the quality of) Tamas preponderates.

Like fire and other elements (which, though undifferentiated, appear as differentiated through diverse media), the Lord (though one) appears endowed with various forms (in the shape of the numberless Jiva); yet He is not distinguished from the psychophysical organism (occupied by Him). It is only the discerning that are eventually able to realize the Self dwelling in their own heart after carefully investigating it. When intending to create bodies (as a means of enjoyment) for the Jiva (the individual soul), the aforesaid Supreme evolves(the element of) Rajas as a distinct entity (out of the chaos hitherto prevailing) by His own Maya (creative energy). (Nay,) keen to sport in the midst of (all) these heterogeneous bodies, the omnipotent Lord evolves the Sattvaguna and when about to retire (from His sportful activities), He fosters the element of Tamas. The Lord, who is the infallible Creator (of the universe) in conjunction with Prakrti and Purusa (the grounds of creation), O ruler among men, brings forth the running Time, which stands as the support (an assistant) of Prakrti and Purusa. Now that which goes by the name of Time, O Pariksit, fosters the element of Sattva (at the dawn of creation); hence the Lord too, who enjoys an extensive fame, fosters as it were the host of gods as their friend and exterminates their enemies, the Asuras, dominated as they are by Rajas and Tamas. To illustrate this very fact (of the Lord being entirely free from hatred etc.) a legend was lovingly narrated in the past by Narada (the celestial sage) to the inquiring Emperor Yudhisthira (in whose eye whom no enemy was ever born) during his great sacrificial performance (of Rajasuya), O Pariksit !



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