Canto 4: Creation of the Fourth OrderChapter 14: The Story of King Vena

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 4.14.41

brāhmaṇaḥ sama-dṛk śānto

dīnānāḿ samupekṣakaḥ

sravate brahma tasyāpi

bhinna-bhāṇḍāt payo yathā


brāhmaṇaḥa brāhmaṇa; sama-dṛk — equipoised; śāntaḥ — peaceful; dīnānām — the poor; samupekṣakaḥ — grossly neglecting; sravate — diminishes; brahma — spiritual power; tasya — his; api — certainly; bhinna-bhāṇḍāt — from a cracked pot; payaḥ — water; yathā — just as.


The great sages began to think that although a brāhmaṇa is peaceful and impartial because he is equal to everyone, it is still not his duty to neglect poor humans. By such neglect, a brāhmaṇa's spiritual power diminishes, just as water kept in a cracked pot leaks out.


Brāhmaṇas, the topmost section of human society, are mostly devotees. They are generally unaware of the happenings within the material world because they are always busy in their activities for spiritual advancement. Nonetheless, when there is a calamity in human society, they cannot remain impartial. If they do not do something to relieve the distressed condition of human society, it is said that due to such neglect their spiritual knowledge diminishes. Almost all the sages go to the Himalayas for their personal benefit, but Prahlāda Mahārāja said that he did not want liberation alone. He decided to wait until he was able to deliver all the fallen souls of the world.

In their elevated condition, the brāhmaṇas are called Vaiṣṇavas. There are two types of brāhmaṇas — namely, brāhmaṇa-paṇḍita and brāhmaṇa-vaiṣṇava. A qualified brāhmaṇa is naturally very learned, but when his learning is advanced in understanding the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he becomes a brāhmaṇa-vaiṣṇava. Unless one becomes a Vaiṣṇava, one's perfection of brahminical culture is incomplete.

The saintly persons considered very wisely that although King Vena was very sinful, he was born in a family descending from Dhruva Mahārāja. Therefore the semen in the family must be protected by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Keśava. As such, the sages wanted to take some steps to relieve the situation. For want of a king, everything was being disturbed and turned topsy-turvy.

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