srimad bhagavatam (all cantos 1 - 10)

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"Srimad Bhagavatam – First Canto" by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. COPYRIGHT NOTICE: This is an evaluation copy of the printed version of this book, and is NOT FOR RESALE. This evaluation copy is intended for personal non-commercial use only, under the "fair use" guidelines established by international copyright laws. You may use this electronic file to evaluate the printed version of this book, for your own private use, or for short excerpts used in academic works, research, student papers, presentations, and the like. You can distribute this evaluation copy to others over the Internet, so long as you keep this copyright information intact and do not add or subtract anything to this file and its contents. You may not reproduce more than ten percent (10%) of this book in any medium without the express written permission from the copyright holders. Reference any excerpts in the following way: “Excerpted from “Srimad Bhagavatam First Canto” by A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, courtesy of the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust International, www.krishna.com .” This book and electronic file is Copyright 1972-2004 Bhaktivedanta Book Trust International, 3764 Watseka Avenue, Los Angeles, California 90034, USA. All rights reserved. For any questions, comments, correspondence, or to evaluate dozens of other books in this collection, visit the website of the publishers, www.krishna.com .

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"Srimad Bhagavatam – First Canto" by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. COPYRIGHT NOTICE: This is an evaluation copy of the printed version of this book, and is NOT FOR RESALE. This evaluation copy is intended for personal non-commercial use only, under the "fair use" guidelines established by international copyright laws. You may use this electronic file to evaluate the printed version of this book, for your own private use, or for short excerpts used in academic works, research, student papers, presentations, and the like. You can distribute this evaluation copy to others over the Internet, so long as you keep this copyright information intact and do not add or subtract anything to this file and its contents. You may not reproduce more than ten percent (10%) of this book in any medium without the express written permission from the copyright holders. Reference any excerpts in the following way: “Excerpted from “Srimad Bhagavatam First Canto” by A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, courtesy of the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust International, www.krishna.com.” This book and electronic file is Copyright 1972-2004 Bhaktivedanta Book Trust International, 3764 Watseka Avenue, Los Angeles, California 90034, USA. All rights reserved. For any questions, comments, correspondence, or to evaluate dozens of other books in this collection, visit the website of the publishers, www.krishna.com.
About the Author
His Divine Grace AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, the world’s most distinguished teacher of Vedic religion and thought, is the author of Bhagavad-gita As It Is, Srimad-Bhagavatam, The Nector of Devotion and many other English versions of Vedic literature. He is the founder- acarya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness, which has hundreds of centers throughtout the world.
Copyright © 1998 The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust Int'l. All Rights Reserved.
First Canto
Preface
We must know the present need of human society. And what is that need? Human society is no longer bounded by geographical limits to particular countries or communities. Human society is broader than in the Middle Ages, and the world tendency is toward one state or one human society. The ideals of spiritual communism, according to Çrémad-Bhägavatam, are based more or less on the oneness of the entire human society, nay, of the entire energy of living beings. The need is felt by great thinkers to make this a successful ideology. Çrémad-Bhägavatam will fill this need in human society. It begins, therefore, with the aphorism of Vedänta philosophy janmädy asya yataù [SB 1.1.1] to establish the ideal of a common cause.
Human society, at the present moment, is not in the darkness of oblivion. It has made rapid progress in the field of material comforts, education and economic development throughout the entire world. But there is a pinprick somewhere in the social body at large, and therefore there are large-scale quarrels, even over less important issues. There is need of a clue as to how humanity can become one in peace, friendship and prosperity with a common cause. Çrémad-Bhägavatam will fill this need, for it is a cultural presentation for the respiritualization of the entire human society.
Çrémad-Bhägavatam should be introduced also in the schools and colleges, for it is recommended by the great student-devotee Prahläda Mahäräja in order to change the demoniac face of society.
kaumära äcaret präjïodharmän bhägavatän ihadurlabhaà mänuñaà janmatad apy adhruvam arthadam (Bhäg. 7.6.1)
Disparity in human society is due to lack of principles in a godless
Copyright © 1998 The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust Int'l. All Rights Reserved.
civilization. There is God, or the Almighty One, from whom everything emanates, by whom everything is maintained and in whom everything is merged to rest. Material science has tried to find the ultimate source of creation very insufficiently, but it is a fact that there is one ultimate source of everything that be. This ultimate source is explained rationally and authoritatively in the beautiful Bhägavatam, or Çrémad-Bhägavatam.
Çrémad-Bhägavatam is the transcendental science not only for knowing the ultimate source of everything but also for knowing our relation with Him and our duty toward perfection of the human society on the basis of this perfect knowledge. It is powerful reading matter in the Sanskrit language, and it is now rendered into English elaborately so that simply by a careful reading one will know God perfectly well, so much so that the reader will be sufficiently educated to defend himself from the onslaught of atheists. Over and above this, the reader will be able to convert others to accepting God as a concrete principle.
Çrémad-Bhägavatam begins with the definition of the ultimate source. It is a bona fide commentary on the Vedänta-sütra by the same author, Çréla Vyäsadeva, and gradually it develops into nine cantos up to the highest state of God realization. The only qualification one needs to study this great book of transcendental knowledge is to proceed step by step cautiously and not jump forward haphazardly like with an ordinary book. It should be gone through chapter by chapter, one after another. The reading matter is so arranged with its original Sanskrit text, its English transliteration, synonyms, translation and purports so that one is sure to become a God-realized soul at the end of finishing the first nine cantos.
The Tenth Canto is distinct from the first nine cantos because it deals directly with the transcendental activities of the Personality of Godhead Çré Kåñëa. One will be unable to capture the effects of the Tenth Canto without going through the first nine cantos. The book is complete in twelve cantos, each independent, but it is good for all to read them in small installments one after another.
I must admit my frailties in presenting Çrémad-Bhägavatam, but still I am hopeful of its good reception by the thinkers and leaders of society on the
Copyright © 1998 The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust Int'l. All Rights Reserved.
strength of the following statement of Çrémad-Bhägavatam (1.5.11):
tad-väg-visargo janatägha-viplavo yasmin prati-çlokam abaddhavaty api nämäny anantasya yaço ’ìkitäni yac chåëvanti gäyanti gåëanti sädhavaù
“On the other hand, that literature which is full with descriptions of the transcendental glories of the name, fame, form and pastimes of the unlimited Supreme Lord is a transcendental creation meant to bring about a revolution in the impious life of a misdirected civilization. Such transcendental literatures, even though irregularly composed, are heard, sung and accepted by purified men who are thoroughly honest.”
Oà tat sat A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Dated at Delhi December 15, 1962
Introduction
The conception of God and the conception of Absolute Truth are not on the same level. The Çrémad-Bhägavatam hits on the target of the Absolute Truth. The conception of God indicates the controller, whereas the conception of the Absolute Truth indicates the summum bonum or the ultimate source of all energies. There is no difference of opinion about the personal feature of God as the controller because a controller cannot be impersonal. Of course modern government, especially democratic government, is impersonal to some extent, but ultimately the chief executive head is a person, and the impersonal feature of government is subordinate to the personal feature. So without a doubt whenever we refer to control over others
Copyright © 1998 The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust Int'l. All Rights Reserved.
we must admit the existence of a personal feature. Because there are different controllers for different managerial positions, there may be many small gods. According to the Bhagavad-gétä any controller who has some specific extraordinary power is called a vibhütimat sattva, or controller empowered by the Lord. There are many vibhütimat sattvas, controllers or gods with various specific powers, but the Absolute Truth is one without a second. This Çrémad-Bhägavatam designates the Absolute Truth or the summum bonum as the paraà satyam.
The author of Çrémad-Bhägavatam, Çréla Vyäsadeva, first offers his respectful obeisances unto the paraà satyam (Absolute Truth), and because the paraà satyam is the ultimate source of all energies, the paraà satyam is the Supreme Person. The gods or the controllers are undoubtedly persons, but the paraà satyam from whom the gods derive powers of control is the Supreme Person. The Sanskrit word éçvara (controller) conveys the import of God, but the Supreme Person is called the parameçvara, or the supreme éçvara. The Supreme Person, or parameçvara, is the supreme conscious personality, and because He does not derive any power from any other source, He is supremely independent. In the Vedic literatures Brahmä is described as the supreme god or the head of all other gods like Indra, Candra and Varuëa, but the Çrémad-Bhägavatam confirms that even Brahmä is not independent as far as his power and knowledge are concerned. He received knowledge in the form of the Vedas from the Supreme Person who resides within the heart of every living being. That Supreme Personality knows everything directly and indirectly. Individual infinitesimal persons, who are parts and parcels of the Supreme Personality, may know directly and indirectly everything about their bodies or external features, but the Supreme Personality knows everything about both His external and internal features.
The words janmädy asya [SB 1.1.1] suggest that the source of all production, maintenance or destruction is the same supreme conscious person. Even in our present experience we can know that nothing is generated from inert matter, but inert matter can be generated from the living entity. For instance, by contact with the living entity, the material body develops into a working machine. Men with a poor fund of knowledge mistake the bodily machinery to
Copyright © 1998 The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust Int'l. All Rights Reserved.
be the living being, but the fact is that the living being is the basis of the bodily machine. The bodily machine is useless as soon as the living spark is away from it. Similarly, the original source of all material energy is the Supreme Person. This fact is expressed in all the Vedic literatures, and all the exponents of spiritual science have accepted this truth. The living force is called Brahman, and one of the greatest äcäryas (teachers), namely Çrépäda Çaìkaräcärya, has preached that Brahman is substance whereas the cosmic world is category. The original source of all energies is the living force, and He is logically accepted as the Supreme Person. He is therefore conscious of everything past, present and future, and also of each and every corner of His manifestations, both material and spiritual. An imperfect living being does not even know what is happening within his own personal body. He eats his food but does not know how this food is transformed into energy or how it sustains his body. When a living being is perfect, he is aware of everything that happens, and since the Supreme Person is all-perfect, it is quite natural that He knows everything in all detail. Consequently the perfect personality is addressed in the Çrémad-Bhägavatam as Väsudeva, or one who lives everywhere in full consciousness and in full possession of His complete energy. All of this is clearly explained in the Çrémad-Bhägavatam, and the reader has ample opportunity to study this critically.
In the modern age Lord Çré Caitanya Mahäprabhu preached the Çrémad-Bhägavatam by practical demonstration. It is easier to penetrate into the topics of the Çrémad-Bhägavatam through the medium of Çré Caitanya’s causeless mercy. Therefore a short sketch of His life and precepts is inserted herein to help the reader understand the real merit of Çrémad-Bhägavatam.
It is imperative that one learn the Çrémad-Bhägavatam from the person Bhägavatam. The person Bhägavatam is one whose very life is Çrémad-Bhägavatam in practice. Since Çré Caitanya Mahäprabhu is the Absolute Personality of Godhead, He is both Bhagavän and Bhägavatam in person and in sound. Therefore His process of approaching the Çrémad-Bhägavatam is practical for all people of the world. It was His wish that the Çrémad-Bhägavatam be preached in every nook and corner of the world by those who happened to take their birth in India.
Copyright © 1998 The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust Int'l. All Rights Reserved.
The Çrémad-Bhägavatam is the science of Kåñëa, the Absolute Personality of Godhead of whom we have preliminary information from the text of the Bhagavad-gétä. Çré Caitanya Mahäprabhu has said that anyone, regardless of what he is, who is well versed in the science of Kåñëa (Çrémad-Bhägavatam and Bhagavad-gétä) can become an authorized preacher or preceptor in the science of Kåñëa.
There is a need for the science of Kåñëa in human society for the good of all suffering humanity of the world, and we simply request the leaders of all nations to pick up this science of Kåñëa for their own good, for the good of society and for the good of all the world’s people.
A short sketch of the life and teachings of Lord Caitanya, The Preacher of Çrémad-Bhägavatam
Lord Çré Caitanya Mahäprabhu, the great apostle of love of God and the father of the congregational chanting of the holy name of the Lord, advented Himself at Çrédhäma Mäyäpura, a quarter in the city of Navadvépa in Bengal, on the Phälguné Pürëimä evening in the year 1407 Çakäbda (corresponding to February 1486 by the Christian calendar).
His father, Çré Jagannätha Miçra, a learned brähmaëa from the district of Sylhet, came to Navadvépa as a student because at that time Navadvépa was considered to be the center of education and culture. He domiciled on the banks of the Ganges after marrying Çrématé Çacédevé, a daughter of Çréla Nélämbara Cakravarté, the great learned scholar of Navadvépa.
Jagannätha Miçra had a number of daughters by his wife, Çrématé Çacédevé, and most of them expired at an early age. Two surviving sons, Çré Viçvarüpa and Viçvambhara, became at last the object of their paternal affection. The tenth and youngest son, who was named Viçvambhara, later became known as Nimäi Paëòita and then, after accepting the renounced order of life, Lord Çré Caitanya Mahäprabhu.
Lord Çré Caitanya Mahäprabhu exhibited His transcendental activities for forty-eight years and then disappeared in the year 1455 Çakäbda at Puré.
Copyright © 1998 The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust Int'l. All Rights Reserved.
For His first twenty-four years He remained at Navadvépa as a student and householder. His first wife was Çrématé Lakñmépriyä, who died at an early age when the Lord was away from home. When He returned from East Bengal He was requested by His mother to accept a second wife, and He agreed. His second wife was Çrématé Viñëupriyä Devé, who bore the separation of the Lord throughout her life because the Lord took the order of sannyäsa at the age of twenty-four, when Çrématé Viñëupriyä was barely sixteen years old.
After taking sannyäsa, the Lord made His headquarters at Jagannätha Puré due to the request of His mother, Çrématé Çacédevé. The Lord remained for twenty-four years at Puré. For six years of this time He traveled continuously all over India (and especially throughout southern India) preaching the Çrémad-Bhägavatam.
Lord Caitanya not only preached the Çrémad-Bhägavatam but propagated the teachings of the Bhagavad-gétä as well in the most practical way. In the Bhagavad-gétä Lord Çré Kåñëa is depicted as the Absolute Personality of Godhead, and His last teachings in that great book of transcendental knowledge instruct that one should give up all the modes of religious activities and accept Him (Lord Çré Kåñëa) as the only worshipable Lord. The Lord then assured that all His devotees would be protected from all sorts of sinful acts and that for them there would be no cause for anxiety.
Unfortunately, despite Lord Çré Kåñëa’s direct order and the teachings of the Bhagavad-gétä, less intelligent people misunderstand Him to be nothing but a great historical personality, and thus they cannot accept Him as the original Personality of Godhead. Such men with a poor fund of knowledge are misled by many nondevotees. Thus the teachings of the Bhagavad-gétä were misinterpreted even by great scholars. After the disappearance of Lord Çré Kåñëa there were hundreds of commentaries on the Bhagavad-gétä by many erudite scholars, and almost every one of them was motivated by self-interest.
Lord Çré Caitanya Mahäprabhu is the selfsame Lord Çré Kåñëa. This time, however, He appeared as a great devotee of the Lord in order to preach to the people in general, as well as to religionists and philosophers, about the transcendental position of Çré Kåñëa, the primeval Lord and the cause of all causes. The essence of His preaching is that Lord Çré Kåñëa, who appeared at
Copyright © 1998 The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust Int'l. All Rights Reserved.
Vrajabhümi (Våndävana) as the son of the King of Vraja (Nanda Mahäräja), is the Supreme Personality of Godhead and is therefore worshipable by all. Våndävana-dhäma is nondifferent from the Lord because the name, fame, form and place where the Lord manifests Himself are all identical with the Lord as absolute knowledge. Therefore Våndävana-dhäma is as worshipable as the Lord. The highest form of transcendental worship of the Lord was exhibited by the damsels of Vrajabhümi in the form of pure affection for the Lord, and Lord Çré Caitanya Mahäprabhu recommends this process as the most excellent mode of worship. He accepts the Çrémad-Bhägavata Puräëa as the spotless literature for understanding the Lord, and He preaches that the ultimate goal of life for all human beings is to attain the stage of premä, or love of God.
Many devotees of Lord Caitanya like Çréla Våndävana däsa Öhäkura, Çré Locana däsa Öhäkura, Çréla Kåñëadäsa Kaviräja Gosvämé, Çré Kavikarëapüra, Çré Prabodhänanda Sarasvaté, Çré Rüpa Gosvämé, Çré Sanätana Gosvämé, Çré Raghunätha Bhaööa Gosvämé, Çré Jéva Gosvämé, Çré Gopäla Bhaööa Gosvämé, Çré Raghunätha däsa Gosvämé and in this latter age within two hundred years, Çré Viçvanätha Cakravarté, Çré Baladeva Vidyäbhüñana, Çré Çyämänanda Gosvämé, Çré Narottama däsa Öhäkura, Çré Bhaktivinoda Öhäkura and at last Çré Bhaktisiddhänta Sarasvaté Öhäkura (our spiritual master) and many other great and renowned scholars and devotees of the Lord have prepared voluminous books and literatures on the life and precepts of the Lord. Such literatures are all based on the çästras like the Vedas, Puräëas, Upaniñads, Rämäyaëa, Mahäbhärata and other histories and authentic literatures approved by the recognized äcäryas. They are unique in composition and unrivaled in presentation, and they are full of transcendental knowledge. Unfortunately the people of the world are still ignorant of them, but when these literatures, which are mostly in Sanskrit and Bengali, come to light the world and when they are presented before thinking people, then India’s glory and the message of love will overflood this morbid world, which is vainly searching after peace and prosperity by various illusory methods not approved by the äcäryas in the chain of disciplic succession.
The readers of this small description of the life and precepts of Lord
Copyright © 1998 The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust Int'l. All Rights Reserved.
Caitanya will profit much to go through the books of Çréla Våndävana däsa Öhäkura (Çré Caitanya-bhägavata) and Çréla Kåñëadäsa Kaviräja Gosvämé (Çré Caitanya-caritämåta). The early life of the Lord is most fascinatingly expressed by the author of Caitanya-bhägavata, and as far as the teachings are concerned, they are more vividly explained in the Caitanya-caritämåta. Now they are available to the English-speaking public in our Teachings of Lord Caitanya.
The Lord’s early life was recorded by one of His chief devotees and contemporaries, namely Çréla Muräri Gupta, a medical practitioner of that time, and the latter part of the life of Çré Caitanya Mahäprabhu was recorded by His private secretary Çré Dämodara Gosvämé, or Çréla Svarüpa Dämodara, who was practically a constant companion of the Lord at Puré. These two devotees recorded practically all the incidents of the Lord’s activities, and later on all the books dealing with the Lord, which are above mentioned, were composed on the basis of kaòacäs (notebooks) by Çréla Dämodara Gosvämé and Muräri…