Text 41


bhaumaṁ divyaṁ mānuṣaṁ ca
mahitvaṁ karma-yogajam
yaś cakre nirayaupamyaṁ


bhaumam—of the lower planets; divyam—heavenly; mānuṣam—of human beings; ca—also; mahitvam—all opulences; karma—by fruitive activities; yoga—by mystic power; jam—born; yah—one who; cakre—did; niraya—with hell; aupamyam—comparison or equality; purusa—of the Supreme Personality of Godhead; anujana—to the devotee; priyah—most dear. 


“As a great follower and devotee of the sage Nārada, Mahārāja Priyavrata considered hellish the opulences he had achieved by dint of fruitive activities and mystic power, whether in the lower or heavenly planetary systems or in human society.” 


Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī has said that the position of a devotee is so superexcellent that a devotee does not consider any material opulence worth having. There are different types of opulences on earth, in the heavenly planets and even in the lower planetary system, known as Pātāla. A devotee, however, knows that they are all material, and consequently he is not at all interested in them. As stated in Bhagavad-gītā, paraṁ dṛṣṭvā nivartate [Bg. 9.59]. Sometimes yogīs and jñānīs voluntarily give up all material opulences to practice their system of liberation and taste spiritual bliss. However, they frequently fall down because artificial renunciation of material opulences cannot endure. One must have a superior taste in spiritual life; then he can give up material opulence. Mahārāja Priyavrata had already tasted spiritual bliss, and therefore he had no interest in any of the material achievements available in the lower, higher or middle planetary systems. 

Thus end the Bhaktivedanta purports to the Fifth Canto, First Chapter, of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, entitled “The Activities of Mahārāja Priyavrata.” 

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