19821222 Srimad-Bhagavatam.8.20.3 @ New Orleans, USA
The following is a lecture given by His Holiness Jayapataka Swami on December 22nd, 1982 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The class begins with a reading from the Srimad-Bhagavatam Canto 8, Chapter 20, Verse 3.
Translation by His Divine Grace, Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada:
"I am the grandson of Maharaja Prahlada. How can I withdraw my promise because of greed for money when I have already said that I shall give this land? How can I behave like an ordinary cheater, especially toward a brahmana?"
Translation with repetition:
Jayapataka Swami: Am the grandson
Devotees: Am the grandson
Jayapataka Swami: Of maharaja prahlada
Devotees: Of maharaja prahlada
Jayapataka Swami: How can I withdraw my promise
Devotees: How can I withdraw my promise
Jayapataka Swami: When I have already said
Devotees: When I have already said
Jayapataka Swami: That I shall give this land
Devotees: That I shall give this land
Jayapataka Swami: How can I behave
Devotees: How can I behave
Jayapataka Swami: Like an ordinary cheater
Devotees: Like an ordinary cheater
Jayapataka Swami: Especially toward a Brahmana?
Devotees: Especially toward a Brahmana?
Purport by Srila Prabhupada:
“Bali Maharaja had already been blessed by his grandfather Prahlada Maharaja. Therefore, he was a pure devotee, although born in a family of demons. There are two kinds of highly elevated devotees, called sadhana-siddha and krpa-siddha. Sadhana-siddha refers to one who has become a devotee by regular execution of the regulative principles mentioned in the sastras, as ordered and directed by the spiritual master. If one regularly executes such devotional service, he will certainly attain perfection in due course. But there are other devotees, who may not have undergone all the required details of devotional service but who, by the special mercy of guru and Krsna — the spiritual master and the Supreme Personality of Godhead — have immediately attained the perfection of pure devotional service. Examples of such devotees are the yajña-pati… patnis… the yajña-patnis, Maharaja Bali and Sukadeva Gosvami. The yajña-patnis were the wives of ordinary brahmanas engaged in fruitive activities. Although the brahmanas were very learned and advanced in Vedic knowledge, they could not achieve the mercy of Krsna-Balarama, whereas their wives achieved complete perfection in devotional service, despite their being women. Similarly, Vairocani, Bali Maharaja, received the mercy of Prahlada Maharaja, and by Prahlada Maharaja’s mercy he also received the mercy of Lord Visnu, who appeared before him as a brahmacari beggar. Thus Bali Maharaja became a krpa-siddha because of the special mercy of both guru and Krsna. Caitanya Mahaprabhu confirms this favor: guru-krsna-prasade paya bhakti-lata-bija (Cc. Madhya 19.151). Bali Maharaja, by the grace of Prahlada Maharaja, got the seed of devotional service, and when that seed developed, he achieved the ultimate fruit of that service, namely love of Godhead (prema pum-artho mahan), immediately upon the appearance of Lord Vamanadeva. Bali Maharaja regularly maintained devotion for the Lord, and because he was purified, the Lord appeared before him. Because of unalloyed love for the Lord, he then immediately decided, “I shall give this little dwarf brahmana whatever He asks from me.” This is a sign of love. Thus Bali Maharaja is understood to be one who received the highest perfection of devotional service by special mercy.”
Thus end the purport of Text 3, Chapter 20, Canto 8, the Bhaktivedanta Purports in the matter of Bali Maharaja Surrenders the Universe.
So, yesterday someone was asking that, “How… what would be the result if someone who’s not following principles gets Krishna prasada, or if someone who’s not following all the devotional principles somehow or other chants Hare Krishna, what will be the result? Well, here, we see that Bali Maharaja, he was not following all the principles of devotional service in a strict way, rather simply by the mercy of Prahlada Maharaja, he was able to surrender unto the Lord.
This is the symptom of krpa-siddhi, similarly by the mercy of a devotee, even a person may not be fully following all the devotional aspects, but that can create all good fortune for that person. The devotees are out on the sankirtana-yajna, and there are so many people whom they meet, you see. Those people are not generally following devotional principles, but by the special mercy of the devotees, who are giving them books, who are giving them prasadam, who are engaging them in devotional service, those fortunate souls have their spiritual life begun, even though they may not have considered it in that way, nor had they made any specific plan to achieve that benediction. It simply happened by special mercy. So, this special mercy is something that Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu has been giving out very liberally. In fact, that’s the special nomenclature… the special characteristic of Lord Caitanya’s incarnation, of His descent into this material world, that He gives off… gives out His mercy most liberally. Not considering that, “Well this person is qualified. This person is unqualified. This one you can give the mercy to. This one, you neglect.” No. Everyone, without that consideration, is being offered the mercy. Now, it’s up to them, to what extent they’re able to take the mercy, you see. If they want to take the mercy and utilize it for the purpose of serving Krishna, then their life is perfected. If they take the mercy and they misuse it, they use it simply for some type of sense gratification, then what is the use?
Prabhupada, in his poem, Vrndavane Bhajan, he describes that in the battlefield of Kuruksetra, there were two cousin-brothers fighting, namely Arjuna and Duryodhana. Now, the difference is that although Arjuna and Duryodhana were both fighting Duryodhana knew his relationship with Krishna. He was was fighting after hearing Bhagavad-gita, in the consciousness that this is simply an offering to the Lord, you see. Even though the barriers… even though the uh, barriers for uh, raising… even though they are both fighting, but one, because that person Arjuna was in consciousness of Krishna, one achieved eternal life, was victorious, and was elevated as the greatest of all devotees, while the other for all his hard work and battles, simply achieved a change of body, simply achieved his death. This is the nature of the material world. The person, he may surround himself with his relatives, or may surround himself with so many type of protection, may think that he’s very wise and very expert in terms of his material knowledge, his material uh, uh, acquisitions, but in spite of all those soldiers, they’re all fallible soldiers. They’re all fallible soldiers and ultimately, that person simply achieves death in spite of all these fallible soldiers.
So, here we see that one gets the special mercy of guru and Krishna: guru-krsna-prasade paya bhakti-lata-bija, by that mercy, then it’s possible to actually return back to home, back to Godhead, to ultimately get the mercy of Krishna. One simply waters the devotional creeper, and the devotional creeper grows and grows and grows until finally, it breaks through the material world, goes into the brahmajyoti, breaks through the brahmajyoti and goes to the Vaikuntha lokas, goes beyond the Vaikuntha lokas, to the spiritual abode of Krishna.
laksavrtesu surabhir abhipalayantam
govindam adi-purusam tam aham bhajami
So, there in the cintamani-dhama, that devotional creeper finally takes shelter of Radha and Krishna. There, at the lotus feet of Radha and Krishna, when it takes shelter, then that creeper expands and it produces so many flowers and so many fruits. Those flowers and fruits are again distributed to so many other devotees, and innocent people. So, in this way, the devotional creeper grows simply by the gardener, or the devotee watering while serving here, in the material world.
That watering process is hearing, chanting, remembering, etc. So, we should consider who we want to follow. We can follow Arjuna, or we can follow Duryodhana. You want to follow Duryodhana, then you’ll have one result. If you want to follow Arjuna, then you’ll have another result. So naturally, the intelligent person can choose what he wants to do, whether he wants to follow Arjuna or Duryodhana. So, the devotees in the sankirtana movement, they accept Krishna as the Partha-Sarathi, as the chariot driver, through the order of sastra and guru and sadhu, and they allow Krishna to guide them, through his representatives and through the books which he has spoken and written down, Vyasadeva.
In this way, the devotees’ success is assured, by taking always the shelter of the Lord. This special mercy… to be able to get this mercy, even though there’s no qualification that one can see for it, that is known as krpa-siddhi. That is the special mercy. If somebody gets the mercy, very quickly without even trying for it very hard, or not at all, then that person is considered to be a krpa-siddha, or someone who has got the mercy of the Lord. By that mercy, the person has become liberated.
Hare Krishna Hare Krishna
Krishna Krishna Hare Hare/
Hare Rama Hare Rama
Rama Rama Hare Hare
By that mercy, a person becomes situated in pure devotional service, from whence, he never forgets his relationship with Krishna. Therefore, at every uh, obstacle, the devotee always survives, always is victorious, you see. Never perishes. Krishna promises na me bhaktah vinasyati, “My devotee shall never perish.
Hare Krishna Hare Krishna
Krishna Krishna Hare Hare/
Hare Rama Hare Rama
Rama Rama Hare Hare
Devotee: Why is it said that special mercy is rarely achieved?
Jayapataka Swami: Well, it’s not said about Lord Caitanya, but ordinarily Krishna doesn’t give special mercy, so much. You don’t find. It’s very rare. How many, you can count. Kubja got special mercy. Bali maharaja got special mercy. The gopis got special mercy. Some of the queens in Dvaraka, they got special mercy, but uh, out of so many millions of living entities getting that special mercy is uh, rare. Generally, special mercy is given directly by the Lord, or by His representative, so they’re also very rare. Out of millions and millions of people, you’ll find only one is a pure devotee of Krishna, so if they’re the only ones giving out special mercy, then isn’t that quite rare? In any case, special mercy is very valuable. It’s priceless commodity, so one should always be hankering, Prabhupada advised us, for the special mercy of guru and Gauranga.
Devotee: Then, in the Nectar of Devotion, it says one should always expect the special mercy of Krishna.
Jayapataka Swami: Well, you may expect the mercy of Krishna. It doesn’t say expect the special mercy of Krishna. Hope for special mercy and you expect the mercy of Krishna… You expect the shelter of Krishna. You expect that one day, Krishna will give you the special mercy. He’ll give at His own sweet will, at His own sweet time. That’s not something that we can expect it for one year, or one week, or one hour and then, if you don’t get it, then we feel, “Oh, Krishna’s not given special mercy. He’s let me down.” Right? “I did sankirtana for one day, and it wasn’t good enough. Didn’t get Krishna’s special mercy. Maybe I shouldn’t do sankirtana anymore. I should do something else.”. Keep on trying to do one’s service and hope and pray for the mercy of Krishna. Krishna has given His special mercy to so many, why won’t He give also to a devotee who’s sincerely serving Him? But, one should put oneself in the most favorable position for getting Krishna’s special mercy.
No one has any claim to get pure love for Godhead. Only claim, Narottama dasa Thakura expressed was that he was the most fallen of the fallen, and that Lord Caitanya was the most merciful of all, that therefore, he felt that his claim was that he was so fallen, therefore, he should be delivered first.
Devotee: How does the spiritual master give special mercy?
Jayapataka Swami: How does he give special mercy? So many ways. Preaches to the devotees. Explains to them devotional service. Prays to Krishna that the devotee may be accepted into devotional service. If devotee’s accepted into devotional service, that’s special mercy, and special mercy goes on in so many different ways. Here, the word… why it’s said, “Special mercy”, can’t… if you want… I mean since… you know… split hairs about the whole thing. That special mercy, what is the special mercy? Means that even the person’s not following rules and regulations and so many things, wasn’t, you know, living in the asrama for… and uh, so many things. He was just uh, he was a king of demons, but he was the grandson of Prahlada, so he even in spite of not being… was, otherwise so qualified in terms of you know, just uh, sadhana-bhakti, still, by some special mercy, that means by the well-wishes of Prahlada Maharaja, just by his wish, just by his favorable uh, desire that alone was enough lay the groundwork, so Bali Maharaja could develop this spontaneous love for Vamanadeva.
It’s not that the mercy of the spiritual master has to be uh, in a visible way. That just by his favorable wishes, by his favorable desires, a person can advance in Krishna consciousness, but when a person starts to advance, then one should naturally become more and more responsible to repay that special mercy.
One takes that whatever advancement one has achieved is… is due to the mercy of the spiritual master in response to one’s desire in most cases, and then when there was no desire, then you know it was special mercy. I had no desire to be a devotee. Somehow I came to uh, to deliver the uh, milk, and the devotees kept giving me cookies and uh, I can see that by their special mercy, I became a devotee. That… someone may actually come here, looking for Krishna cause there’s some problem that person has, or he wants to know about something, or is looking for God. Comes here, starts to practice. So, then you can say that’s ordinary mercy. And if somebody comes and is just completely, not the slightest desire at all for spiritual life, visibly, there still the devotee goes out of his way to just engage that person, giving some prasada, or some… whatever. So, that’s a special mercy. It’s not that the person really did anything to deserve it, or even desires it, much. Just a devotee, out of his own, “Let me help this person.”
Is that alright? You agree?
Jayapataka Swami: Alright. Haribol.
Devotee: (Inaudible) ki,
[End of Recording]