Canto 6: Prescribed Duties for MankindChapter 5: Nārada Muni Cursed by Prajāpati Dakṣa

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 6.5.39

nanu bhāgavatā nityaḿ


ṛte tvāḿ sauhṛda-ghnaḿ vai

vairań-karam avairiṇām


nanu — now; bhāgavatāḥ — devotees of the Supreme Personality of Godhead; nityam — eternally; bhūta-anugraha-kātarāḥ — very much anxious to bestow benedictions upon the fallen conditioned souls; ṛte — except; tvām — yourself; sauhṛda-ghnama breaker of friendship (therefore not countable among the bhāgavatas, or devotees of the Lord); vai — indeed; vairam-karam — you create enmity; avairiṇām — toward persons who are not enemies.


All the devotees of the Lord but you are very kind to the conditioned souls and are eager to benefit others. Although you wear the dress of a devotee, you create enmity with people who are not your enemies, or you break friendship and create enmity between friends. Are you not ashamed of posing as a devotee while performing these abominable actions?


Such are the criticisms that must be borne by the servants of Nārada Muni in the disciplic succession. Through the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, we are trying to train young people to become devotees and return home, back to Godhead, by following rigid regulative principles, but our service is appreciated neither in India nor abroad in the Western countries where we are endeavoring to spread this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. In India the caste brāhmaṇas have become enemies of the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement because we elevate foreigners, who are supposed to be mlecchas and yavanas, to the position of brāhmaṇas. We train them in austerities and penances and recognize them as brāhmaṇas by awarding them sacred threads. Thus the caste brāhmaṇas of India are very displeased by our activities in the Western world. In the West also, the parents of the young people who join this movement have also become enemies. We have no business creating enemies, but the process is such that nondevotees will always be inimical toward us. Nevertheless, as stated in the śāstras, a devotee should be both tolerant and merciful. Devotees engaged in preaching should be prepared to be accused by ignorant persons, and yet they must be very merciful to the fallen conditioned souls. If one can execute his duty in the disciplic succession of Nārada Muni, his service will surely be recognized. As the Lord says in Bhagavad-gītā (18.68-69):

ya idaḿ paramaḿ guhyaḿ

mad-bhakteṣv abhidhāsyati

bhaktiḿ mayi parāḿ kṛtvā

mām evaiṣyaty asaḿśayaḥ

na ca tasmān manuṣyeṣu

kaścin me priya-kṛttamaḥ

bhavitā na ca me tasmād

anyaḥ priyataro bhuvi

"For one who explains the supreme secret to the devotees, devotional service is guaranteed, and at the end he will come back to Me. There is no servant in this world more dear to Me than he, nor will there ever be one more dear." Let us continue preaching the message of Lord Kṛṣṇa and not be afraid of enemies. Our only duty is to satisfy the Lord by this preaching, which will be accepted as service by Lord Caitanya and Lord Kṛṣṇa. We must sincerely serve the Lord and not be deterred by so-called enemies.

In this verse the word sauhṛda-ghnam ("a breaker of friendship") is used. Because Nārada Muni and the members of his disciplic succession disrupt friendships and family life, they are sometimes accused of being sauhṛda-ghnam, creators of enmity between relatives. Actually such devotees are friends of every living entity (suhṛdaḿ sarva-bhūtānām), but they are misunderstood to be enemies. Preaching can be a difficult, thankless task, but a preacher must follow the orders of the Supreme Lord and be unafraid of materialistic persons.

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