Canto 6: Prescribed Duties for MankindChapter 17: Mother Pārvatī Curses Citraketu

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 6.17.31

vāsudeve bhagavati

bhaktim udvahatāḿ nṛṇām


na hi kaścid vyapāśrayaḥ


vāsudeveto Lord Vāsudeva, Kṛṣṇa; bhagavati — the Supreme Personality of Godhead; bhaktim — love and faith in devotional service; udvahatām — for those who are carrying; nṛṇām — men; jñāna-vairāgya — of real knowledge and detachment; vīryāṇām — possessing the powerful strength; na — not; hi — indeed; kaścit — anything; vyapāśrayaḥas interest or shelter.


Persons engaged in devotional service to Lord Vāsudeva, Kṛṣṇa, have naturally perfect knowledge and detachment from this material world. Therefore such devotees are not interested in the so-called happiness or so-called distress of this world.


Here is the distinction between a devotee and a philosopher who speculates on the subject matter of transcendence. A devotee does not need to cultivate knowledge to understand the falsity or temporary existence of this material world. Because of his unalloyed devotion to Vāsudeva, this knowledge and detachment are automatically manifested in his person. As confirmed elsewhere in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (1.2.7):

vāsudeve bhagavati

bhakti-yogaḥ prayojitaḥ

janayaty āśu vairāgyaḿ

jñānaḿ ca yad ahaitukam

One who engages in unalloyed devotional service to Vāsudeva, Kṛṣṇa, automatically becomes aware of this material world, and therefore he is naturally detached. This detachment is possible because of his high standard of knowledge. The speculative philosopher tries to understand that this material world is false by cultivating knowledge, but this understanding is automatically manifested in the person of a devotee, without separate endeavor. The Māyāvādī philosophers may be very proud of their so-called knowledge, but because they do not understand Vāsudeva (vāsudevaḥ sarvam iti [Bg. 7.19]), they do not understand the world of duality, which is a manifestation of Vāsudeva's external energy. Therefore, unless the so-called jñānīs take shelter of Vāsudeva, their speculative knowledge is imperfect. Ye 'nye 'ravindākṣa vimukta-māninaḥ. They simply think of becoming free from the contamination of the material world, but because they do not take shelter at the lotus feet of Vāsudeva, their knowledge is impure. When they actually become pure, they surrender to the lotus feet of Vāsudeva. Therefore, the Absolute Truth is easier to understand for a devotee than for jñānīs who simply speculate to understand Vāsudeva. Lord Śiva confirms this statement in the following verse.

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