Canto 8: Withdrawal of the Cosmic CreationsChapter 23: The Demigods Regain the Heavenly Planets

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 8.23.8

citraḿ tavehitam aho 'mita-yogamāyā-

līlā-visṛṣṭa-bhuvanasya viśāradasya

sarvātmanaḥ samadṛśo 'viṣamaḥ svabhāvo

bhakta-priyo yad asi kalpataru-svabhāvaḥ


citram — very wonderful; tava īhitam — all Your activities; aho — alas; amita — unlimited; yogamāyā — of Your spiritual potency; līlā — by the pastimes; visṛṣṭa-bhuvanasya — of Your Lordship, by whom all the universes have been created; viśāradasya — of Your Lordship, who are expert in all respects; sarva-ātmanaḥ — of Your Lordship, who pervade all; sama-dṛśaḥ — and who are equal toward all; aviṣamaḥ — without differentiation; svabhāvaḥ — that is Your characteristic; bhakta-priyaḥ — under the circumstances You become favorable to the devotees; yat — because; asi — You are; kalpataru-svabhāvaḥ — having the characteristic of a desire tree.


O my Lord, Your pastimes are all wonderfully performed by Your inconceivable spiritual energy; and by her perverted reflection, the material energy, You have created all the universes. As the Supersoul of all living entities, You are aware of everything, and therefore You are certainly equal toward everyone. Nonetheless, You favor Your devotees. This is not partiality, however, for Your characteristic is just like that of a desire tree, which yields everything according to one's desire.


The Lord says in Bhagavad-gītā (9.29):

samo 'haḿ sarva-bhūteṣu

na me dveṣyo 'sti na priyaḥ

ye bhajanti tu māḿ bhaktyā

mayi te teṣu cāpy aham

"I envy no one, nor am I partial to anyone. I am equal to all. But whoever renders service unto Me in devotion is a friend, is in Me, and I am also a friend to him." The Supreme Personality of Godhead is certainly equal toward all living entities, but a devotee who fully surrenders at the lotus feet of the Lord is different from a nondevotee. In other words, everyone can take shelter at the lotus feet of the Lord to enjoy equal benedictions from the Lord, but nondevotees do not do so, and therefore they suffer the consequences created by the material energy. We can understand this fact by a simple example. The king or government is equal to all citizens. Therefore, if a citizen capable of receiving special favors from the government is offered such favors, this does not mean that the government is partial. One who knows how to receive favors from the authority can receive them, but one who does not neglects these favors and does not receive them. There are two classes of men — the demons and the demigods. The demigods are fully aware of the Supreme Lord's position, and therefore they are obedient to Him, but even if demons know about the supremacy of the Lord they purposely defy His authority. Therefore, the Lord makes distinctions according to the mentality of the living being, but otherwise He is equal to everyone. Like a desire tree, the Lord fulfills the desires of one who takes shelter of Him, but one who does not take such shelter is distinct from the surrendered soul. One who takes shelter at the lotus feet of the Lord is favored by the Lord, regardless of whether such a person is a demon or a demigod.

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