Varnashrama means Selfless Service

2012-01-07
Srimad Bhagavatam 10.05.15-16 - Varnashrama means Selfless Service (download mp3) and (download flv)
by Govinda Prabhu at ISKCON Chowpatty
www.iskcondesiretree.net



SB 10.5.15-16
nando maha-manas tebhyo
vaso 'lankara-go-dhanam
suta-magadha-vandibhyo
ye 'nye vidyopajivinah
tais taih kamair adinatma
yathocitam apujayat
visnor aradhanarthaya
sva-putrasyodayaya ca

Translation: 
The great-minded Maharaja Nanda gave clothing, ornaments and cows in charity to the cowherd men in order to please Lord Visnu, and thus he improved the condition of his own son in all respects. He distributed charity to the sutas, the magadhas, the vandis, and men of all other professions, according to their educational qualifications, and satisfied everyone's desires.

Purport: 
Although it has become fashionable to speak of daridra-narayana, the words visnor aradhanarthaya do not mean that all the people satisfied by Nanda Maharaja in this great ceremony were Visnus. They were not daridra, nor were they Narayana. Rather, they were devotees of Narayana, and by their educational qualifications they would satisfy Narayana. Therefore, satisfying them was an indirect way of satisfying Lord Visnu. Mad-bhakta-pujabhyadhika (SB 11.19.21). The Lord says, "Worshiping My devotees is better than worshiping Me directly." The varnasrama system is entirely meant for visnu-aradhana, worship of Lord Visnu. Varnasramacaravata purusena parah puman/ visnur aradhyate [Cc. Madhya 8.58] (Visnu Purana 3.8.9). The ultimate goal of life is to please Lord Visnu, the Supreme Lord. The uncivilized man or materialistic person, however, does not know this aim of life. Na te viduh svartha-gatim hi visnum (SB 7.5.31). One's real self-interest lies in satisfying Lord Visnu. Not satisfying Lord Visnu but instead attempting to become happy through material adjustments (bahir-artha-maninah) is the wrong way for happiness. Because Visnu is the root of everything, if Visnu is pleased, everyone is pleased; in particular, one's children and family members become happy in all respects. Nanda Maharaja wanted to see his newborn child happy. That was his purpose. Therefore he wanted to satisfy Lord Visnu, and to satisfy Lord Visnu it was necessary to satisfy His devotees, such as the learned brahmanas, magadhas and sutas. Thus, in a roundabout way, ultimately it was Lord Visnu who was to be satisfied.

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