Ādi-līlāChapter 17: The Pastimes of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu in His Youth

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrī Caitanya Caritāmṛta Ādi 17.78

kvāhaḿ daridraḥ pāpīyān

kva kṛṣṇaḥ śrī-niketanaḥ

brahma-bandhur iti smāhaḿ

bāhubhyāḿ parirambhitaḥ


kva — whereas; ahamI (am); daridraḥ — very poor; pāpīyān — sinful; kva — whereas; kṛṣṇaḥ — the Supreme Personality of Godhead; śrī-niketanaḥ — the shelter of the goddess of fortune; brahma-bandhuḥa caste brāhmaṇa without brahminical qualifications; iti — thus; sma — certainly; ahamI (am); bāhubhyām — by the arms; parirambhitaḥ — embraced.


"'Since I am but a poor, sinful brahma-bandhu, not brahminically qualified although born in a brāhmaṇa family, and You, Lord Kṛṣṇa, are the shelter of the goddess of fortune, it is simply wonderful, my dear Lord Kṛṣṇa, that You have embraced me with Your arms.'"


This is a verse from Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (10.81.16) spoken by Sudāmā Vipra in the presence of Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa. This and the previous verse quoted from Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam clearly indicate that although Kṛṣṇa is so great that it is not possible for anyone to satisfy Him, He exhibits His greatness by being personally satisfied even with one who is unqualified from so many angles of vision. Sudāmā Vipra was born in a family of brāhmaṇas, and he was a learned scholar and a class friend of Kṛṣṇa's, yet he considered himself unfit to be strictly called a brāhmaṇa. He called himself a brahma-bandhu, meaning "one born in a brāhmaṇa family but not brahminically qualified." Because of His great respect for brāhmaṇas, however, Kṛṣṇa embraced Sudāmā Vipra, although he was not a regular brāhmaṇa but a brahma-bandhu, or friend of a brāhmaṇa family. Murāri Gupta could not be called even a brahma-bandhu because he was born of a vaidya family and according to the social structure was therefore considered a śūdra. But Kṛṣṇa bestowed special mercy upon Murāri Gupta because he was a beloved devotee of the Lord, as stated by Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. The purport of Śrī Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura's elaborate discussion of this subject is that no qualification in this material world can satisfy the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Kṛṣṇa, yet everything becomes successful simply through development of devotional service to the Lord.

The members of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness cannot even call themselves brahma-bandhus. Therefore our only means for satisfying Kṛṣṇa is to pursue the injunctions of Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, who says:

yāre dekha, tāre kaha 'kṛṣṇa'-upadeśa

āmāra ājñāya guru hañā tāra' ei deśa

"Whomever you meet, instruct him on the teachings of Kṛṣṇa. In this way, on My order, become a spiritual master and deliver the people of this country." (Cc. Madhya 7.128) Simply trying to follow the orders of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, we speak to the people of the world about Bhagavad-gītā As It Is. This will make us qualified to satisfy the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Kṛṣṇa.

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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda, Founder Ācārya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness