Despair not, Sri Hari is the sole refuge

Despair not, Sri Hari is the sole refuge

Srimad Bhagawatham, Mahatmyam, Chapter One Sloka 70: Vipraiar...In pursuit of transient wealth, Brahmins are going from house to house trying to narrate Srimad Bhagavatham. Due to this attitude, the essence of the holy book is lost.

Interpretation: In Kaliyug, religion has also become commercial. This was foreseen by Narada Muni ages ago. Priests, Brahmins and ‘godmen’ try to ‘sell’ Srimad Bhagawatham for money. In the name of Bhakti, they go from house to house trying to narrate the Holy Book. It should be remembered that for a text like Srimad Bhagawatham, there should be a receptive audience. People should be willing to listen and the narrator should do so out of Bhakti, not money. There is a saying: there is no use trying to narrate the vedas into the ears of a buffalo.

Srimad Bhagawatham, Mahatmyam, Chapter One Sloka 71: Atyugra… As non-believers have occupied the banks of holy rivers, the divine strength of these rivers has also been lost or diminished.

Interpretation: Rivers are considered holy in Sanatana Dharma as they sustain life. In earlier days, they were revered (Kumbh is an example) and protected. But these rivers are also not spared by non-believers. Land-sharks have started swallowing rivers and lakes. Srimad Bhagawatham is also to be viewed through the prism of environment – rivers, forests, animals, earth, air were revered, protected and made richer for the coming generations. Where are we today?

Srimad Bhagawatham, Mahatmyam, Chapter One Sloka 72: Kamakroda..People who have not given up lust, anger and desire for wealth are doing tapas (penance). Hence, the strength of tapas has also reduced.

Interpretation: For doing tapas or penance, one should give up all worldly desires. It is only when one gives up lust, anger, jealousy, desire for wealth etc can one make space for Bhakti and focussed penance on the Lord.

Despair not, Sri Hari is the sole refuge

Srimad Bhagawatham, Mahatmyam, Chapter One Sloka 73: Manas… Unable to control their minds and bereft of the knowledge of ancient texts, the power of meditation has also diminished.

Srimad Bhagawatham, Mahatmyam, Chapter One Sloka 74: Panditho… Pandits or scholars are interested in married life and in producing children, not in attaining mukti or liberation.

Srimad Bhagawatham, Mahatmyam, Chapter One Sloka 75: Nahi… It is difficult to see pure Vaishnava dharma anywhere. Hence there is degradation everywhere.

Srimad Bhagawatham, Mahatmyam, Chapter One Sloka 76: Aiyamtu… These traits are due to Kaliyuga dharma. That being so, Sri Hari, who understands everything, is able to bear with the happening around.

Interpretation: The above slokas need not put you in despair. Listen to the Holy Text and assimilate Bhakti and unadulterated love for Sri Hari.

Srimad Bhagawatham, Mahatmyam, Chapter One Sloka 77: Suthaouvacha… Hearing Narada’s explanation, Bhakti was surprised. What she further said, hey Shounaka, please listen.

Srimad Bhagawatham, Mahatmyam, Chapter One Sloka 78: Sri Bhaktiurvacha… Hey Muni, you are a divine soul. I am lucky having met you. In this world, the very sight of Sadhus (saints) is enough to give happiness and solace.

Srimad Bhagawatham, Mahatmyam, Chapter One Sloka 79: Jayathy, jayathi… Listening to your sole advice, Kayathu’s son (Prahalada) won over Maya and Druva was able to attain an exalted place. You are the fountainhead of all noble deeds and I bow before such an attained soul.

Interpretation: The story of Prahalada and Druva will come in the main chapters later.

This is the first chapter from Padmapurana on Sri Mahabhagavatha Mahatmayam (importance or significance) and this was the dialogue between Bhakti and Narada.  

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