Adi-lilaChapter 8: The Author Receives the Orders of Krishna and Guru

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Adi 8.17

jnanatah su-labha muktir

bhuktir yajnadi-punyatah

seyam sadhana-sahasrair

hari-bhaktih su-durlabha

SYNONYMS

jnanatah -- by cultivation of knowledge; su-labha -- easily obtainable; muktih -- liberation; bhuktih -- sense enjoyment; yajna-adi -- performance of sacrifices, etc.; punyatah -- and by performing pious activities; sa -- that; iyam -- this; sadhana-sahasraih -- execution of thousands of sacrifices; hari-bhaktih -- devotional service; su-durlabha -- is very rare.

TRANSLATION

"By cultivating philosophical knowledge one can understand his spiritual position and thus be liberated, and by performing sacrifices and pious activities one can achieve sense gratification in a higher planetary system, but the devotional service of the Lord is so rare that even by executing hundreds and thousands of such sacrifices one cannot obtain it."

PURPORT

Prahlada Maharaja instructs:

matir na krishne paratah svato va

mitho 'bhipadyeta griha-vratanam

(Bhag. 7.5.30)

naisham matis tavad urukramanghrim

sprisaty anarthapagamo yad-arthah

mahiyasam pada-rajo-'bhishekam

nishkincananam na vrinita yavat

(Bhag. 7.5.32)

These slokas are to be discussed. Their purport is that one cannot obtain krishna-bhakti, or the devotional service of the Lord, by official execution of the Vedic rituals. One has to approach a pure devotee. Narottama dasa Thakura sings, chadiya vaishnava-seva nistara payeche keba: "Who has been elevated without rendering service to a pure Vaishnava?" It is the statement of Prahlada Maharaja that unless one is able to accept the dust from the lotus feet of a pure Vaishnava there is no possibility of achieving the platform of devotional service. That is the secret. The above-mentioned tantra-vacana, quoted from the Bhakti-rasamrita-sindhu (1.1.36), is our perfect guidance in this connection.

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