Canto 5: The Creative ImpetusChapter 15: The Glories of the Descendants of King Priyavrata

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 5.15.7

sa vai sva-dharmeṇa prajā-pālana-poṣaṇa-prīṇanopalālanānuśāsana-lakṣaṇenejyādinā ca bhagavati mahā-puruṣe parāvare brahmaṇi sarvātmanārpita-paramārtha-lakṣaṇena brahmavic-caraṇānusevayāpādita-bhagavad-bhakti-yogena cābhīkṣṇaśaḥ paribhāvitāti-śuddha-matir uparatānātmya ātmani svayam upalabhyamāna-brahmātmānubhavo 'pi nirabhimāna evāvanim ajūgupat


saḥ — that King Gaya; vai — indeed; sva-dharmeṇa — by his own duty; prajā-pālana — of protecting the subjects; poṣaṇa — of maintaining them; prīṇana — of making them happy in all respects; upalālana — of treating them as sons; anuśāsana — of sometimes chastising them for their mistakes; lakṣaṇena — by the symptoms of a king; ijyā-ādinā — by performing the ritualistic ceremonies as recommended in the Vedas; ca — also; bhagavati — unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Viṣṇu; mahā-puruṣe — the chief of all living entities; para-avare — the source of all living entities, from the highest, Lord Brahmā, to the lowest, like the insignificant ants; brahmaṇi — unto Parabrahman, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vāsudeva; sarva-ātmanāin all respects; arpita — of being surrendered; parama-artha-lakṣaṇena — with spiritual symptoms; brahma-vit — of self-realized, saintly devotees; caraṇa-anusevayā — by the service of the lotus feet; āpādita — achieved; bhagavat-bhakti-yogena — by the practice of devotional service to the Lord; ca — also; abhīkṣṇaśaḥ — continuously; paribhāvita — saturated; ati-śuddha-matiḥ — whose completely pure consciousness (full realization that the body and mind are separate from the soul); uparata-anātmye — wherein identification with material things was stopped; ātmaniin his own self; svayam — personally; upalabhyamāna — being realized; brahma-ātma-anubhavaḥ — perception of his own position as the Supreme Spirit; api — although; nirabhimānaḥ — without false prestige; evain this way; avanim — the whole world; ajūgupat — ruled strictly according to the Vedic principles.


King Gaya gave full protection and security to the citizens so that their personal property would not be disturbed by undesirable elements. He also saw that there was sufficient food to feed all the citizens. [This is called poṣaṇa.] He would sometimes distribute gifts to the citizens to satisfy them. [This is called prīṇana.] He would sometimes call meetings and satisfy the citizens with sweet words. [This is called upalālana.] He would also give them good instructions on how to become first-class citizens. [This is called anuśāsana.] Such were the characteristics of King Gaya's royal order. Besides all this, King Gaya was a householder who strictly observed the rules and regulations of household life. He performed sacrifices and was an unalloyed pure devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He was called Mahāpuruṣa because as a king he gave the citizens all facilities, and as a householder he executed all his duties so that at the end he became a strict devotee of the Supreme Lord. As a devotee, he was always ready to give respect to other devotees and to engage in the devotional service of the Lord. This is the bhakti-yoga process. Due to all these transcendental activities, King Gaya was always free from the bodily conception. He was full in Brahman realization, and consequently he was always jubilant. He did not experience material lamentation. Although he was perfect in all respects, he was not proud, nor was he anxious to rule the kingdom.


As Lord Kṛṣṇa states in Bhagavad-gītā, when He descends on earth, He has two types of business — to give protection to the faithful and annihilate the demons (paritrāṇāya sādhūnāḿ vināśāya ca duṣkṛtām [Bg. 4.8]). Since the king is the representative of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he is sometimes called nara-deva, that is, the Lord as a human being. According to the Vedic injunctions, he is worshiped as God on the material platform. As a representative of the Supreme Lord, the king had the duty to protect the citizens in a perfect way so that they would not be anxious for food and protection and so that they would be jubilant. The king would supply everything for their benefit, and because of this he would levy taxes. If the king or government otherwise levies taxes on the citizens, he becomes responsible for the sinful activities of the citizens. In Kali-yuga, monarchy is abolished because the kings themselves are subjected to the influence of Kali-yuga. It is understood from the Rāmāyaṇa that when Bibhīṣaṇa became friends with Lord Rāmacandra, he promised that if by chance or will he broke the laws of friendship with Lord Rāmacandra, he would become a brāhmaṇa or a king in Kali-yuga. In this age, as Bibhīṣaṇa indicated, both brāhmaṇas and kings are in a wretched condition. Actually there are no kings or brāhmaṇas in this age, and due to their absence the whole world is in a chaotic condition and is always in distress. Compared to present standards, Mahārāja Gaya was a true representative of Lord Viṣṇu; therefore he was known as Mahāpuruṣa.

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