Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana Book 8 Chapter 22:1-11

Book 8: Chapter 22

Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana: Book 8: Chapter 22: Verses 1-11
A dialogue between king Bali and Lord Vamana

Sri Suka resumed : Thus subjected to contumely by the Lord, O Pariksit, bali, the demon chief-who remained unagitated in mind, even though the Lord tried tho unnerve him (in order to demonstrate to the world his strength of resolution and thereby enhance his reputation)- gave the following calm reply. Bali submitted : O illustrious One, if You consider the vow made by me to be untrue, O Chief of the gods, I shall (presently) justify it, inasmuch as it was not intended to deceive You. Pray, place Your third footstep on my head (which is certainly more valuable than my possessions taken together). Fallen as I (already) am from my position (sovereignty of the three worlds), I am not so very afraid of damnation nor of being bound with cords nor (again) of a calamity which cannot be easily got rid of, much less of a financial crisis, (nay,) not (even) of punishment at Your hands, as of being called ignoble. I regard, as most laudable for persons, punishment inflicted by the most worthy, (which is a blessing in disguise and) which as a matter of fact no mother, father, brother or friends can mete out. Disguised as an enemy, you are indeed the greatest benefactor to us, Asuras-You, who have vouchsafed vision in the shape of a fall (from power) to us, (who were) blinded with arrogance from manifold causes, and by nursing (a feeling of) deep-rooted enmity towards whom many an Asura has actually attained perfection (in the form of final beatitude), which only those possessed of exclusive devotion could attain.

By You as such of manifold activity have I been taken prisoner and bound with the cords of Varuna (the god of water). Yet I feel neither much ashamed nor afflicted (thereby). My grandfather, Prahrada, who is esteemed by Your devotees and whose reputation as a pious soul is manifest, was subjected to a variety of tortures by his own father (Hiranyakasipu), Your (sworn) enemy, (only) because he was devoted to You."What purpose of a mortal will be served through this body, which will ultimately abandon him? What will be gained (by him) through robbers passing under the name of kinsfolk and carrying away his wealth? What object (of his) will be accomplished through a wife either, who is instrumental in bringing him transmigration, and what useful purpose of his will be served through houses? In (love for) these is involved (mere) waste of one's lifetime." Having concluded thus, the aforesaid Prahrada (My grandfather); an exalted soul possessed of unfathomable wisdom and the foremost of the virtuous, took shelter in Your lotus-feet--- which are eternal and have no fear from any quarter (whatsoever), even though You destroyed his own kinsmen (the demons)-afraid as he was of (the company of) worldly people. And I too have been brought to Your presence by (a propitious) fate, even though You pose as my enemy, and have been forcibly robbed of my fortune; for a man whose understanding has been rendered obtuse by wealth does not recognize this life, which is (always) within easy reach of Death, as uncertain.



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