Madhya-līlāChapter 20: Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu Instructs Sanātana Gosvāmī in the Science of the Absolute Truth

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrī Caitanya Caritāmṛta Madhya 20.118

kabhu svarge uṭhāya, kabhu narake ḍubāya

daṇḍya-jane rājā yena nadīte cubāya


kabhu — sometimes; svargeto higher planetary systems; uṭhāyahe rises; kabhu — sometimes; narakein hellish conditions of life; ḍubāyahe is drowned; daṇḍya-janea criminal; rājāa king; yenaas; nadītein the river; cubāya — dunks.


"In the material condition, the living entity is sometimes raised to higher planetary systems and material prosperity and sometimes drowned in a hellish situation. His state is exactly like that of a criminal whom a king punishes by submerging him in water and then raising him again from the water.


In the Bṛhad-āraṇyaka Upaniṣad (4.3.16) it is stated, asańgo hy ayaḿ puruṣaḥ: the living entity is always free from the contamination of the material world. One who is not materially infected and who does not forget Kṛṣṇa as his master is called nitya-mukta. In other words, one who is eternally liberated from material contamination is called nitya-mukta. From time immemorial the nitya-mukta living entity has always been a devotee of Kṛṣṇa, and his only attempt has been to serve Kṛṣṇa. Thus he never forgets his eternal servitorship to Kṛṣṇa. Any living entity who forgets his eternal relationship with Kṛṣṇa is under the sway of the material condition. Bereft of the Lord's transcendental loving service, he is subjected to the reactions of fruitive activity. When he is elevated to the higher planetary systems due to worldly pious activities, he considers himself well situated, but when he is subjected to punishment, he thinks himself improperly situated. Thus material nature awards and punishes the living entity. When the living entity is materially opulent, material nature is rewarding him. When he is materially embarrassed, material nature is punishing him.

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