Canto 1: CreationChapter 19: The Appearance of Śukadeva Gosvāmī

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 1.19.37

ataḥ pṛcchāmi saḿsiddhiḿ

yogināḿ paramaḿ gurum

puruṣasyeha yat kāryaḿ

mriyamāṇasya sarvathā


ataḥ — therefore; pṛcchāmi — beg to inquire; saḿsiddhim — the way of perfection; yoginām — of the saints; paramam — the supreme; gurum — the spiritual master; puruṣasya — of a person; ihain this life; yat — whatever; kāryam — duty; mriyamāṇasya — of one who is going to die; sarvathāin every way.


You are the spiritual master of great saints and devotees. I am therefore begging you to show the way of perfection for all persons, and especially for one who is about to die.


Unless one is perfectly anxious to inquire about the way of perfection, there is no necessity of approaching a spiritual master. A spiritual master is not a kind of decoration for a householder. Generally a fashionable materialist engages a so-called spiritual master without any profit. The pseudo spiritual master flatters the so-called disciple, and thereby both the master and his ward go to hell without a doubt. Mahārāja Parīkṣit is the right type of disciple because he puts forward questions vital to the interest of all men, particularly for the dying men. The question put forward by Mahārāja Parīkṣit is the basic principle of the complete thesis of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. Now let us see how intelligently the great master replies.

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