Srimad Bhagavatam 11.02.53 - Responsible Rememberance of Dharma Lead to Constant Rememberance of Krishna (download mp3)
by Krishna Chaitanya Prabhu at ISKCON Chowpatty
tri-bhuvana-vibhava-hetave ’py akuntha-
smrtir ajitatma-suradibhir vimrgyat
na calati bhagavat-padaravindal
lava-nimisardham api yah sa vaisnavagryah
The lotus feet of the Supreme Personality of Godhead are sought even by the greatest of demigods, such as Brahma and Siva, who have all accepted the Supreme Personality of Godhead as their life and soul. A pure devotee of the Lord can never forget those lotus feet in any circumstance. He will not give up his shelter at the lotus feet of the Lord for a single moment — indeed, not for half a moment — even in exchange for the benediction of ruling and enjoying the opulence of the entire universe. Such a devotee of the Lord is to be considered the best of the Vaisnavas.
According to Srila Sridhara Svami one may ask, “If one were able to gain the opulence of the entire universe in exchange for leaving the Lord’s lotus feet for just half a moment, what would be the harm in leaving the Lord’s lotus feet for such an insignificant amount of time?” The answer is given by the word akuntha-smrti. It is simply impossible for a pure devotee to forget the lotus feet of the Personality of Godhead, since everything that exists is in fact an expansion of the Supreme Lord. Since nothing is separate from the Supreme Lord, a pure devotee of the Lord cannot think of anything but the Lord. Nor can a pure devotee contemplate ruling or enjoying universal opulence; even if given all the opulence of the universe, he would immediately offer it at the lotus feet of the Lord and return to his position of a humble servant of the Lord.
The words ajitatma-suradibhir vimrgyat are very significant in this verse. The lotus feet of Lord Krsna are so opulent that even the lords of all material opulence, namely Brahma and Siva, as well as the other demigods, are always searching for a glimpse of the Lord’s lotus feet. The word vimrgyat indicates that the demigods are not actually able to see the lotus feet of the Lord, but are endeavoring to see them. An example of this is given in the Tenth Canto when Lord Brahma offers prayers to Visnu, begging the Lord to rectify the disturbances on the earth.
A similar verse is found elsewhere in Srimad-Bhagavatam (11.14.14):
na paramesthyam na mahendra-dhisnyam
na sarvabhaumam na rasadhipatyam
na yoga-siddhir apunar-bhavam va
mayy arpitatmecchati mad vinanyat
“The devotee who has offered his soul to Me does not want anything if it is separate from Me — not the position of the supreme demigod of the universe, Brahma, nor that of Lord Indra, nor kingship over the entire earth or over the lower planetary systems, nor the mystic perfections of yoga, nor even freedom from the cycle of rebirth.”
According to Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura, the word ajitatma can also be taken to mean ajitendriyah, or “those whose senses are uncontrolled.” Although the demigods are all to be respected as devotees of Lord Visnu, the absence of gross material discomfort in the higher planetary systems makes them tend to become affected by the bodily concept of life, and sometimes they experience some spiritual difficulty due to the gorgeous material facilities available to them. Such disturbances, however, cannot exist within the mind of a pure devotee of the Lord, as indicated in this verse by the word akuntha-smrti. According to Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura, we can understand from this verse that since none of the material facilities available in any of the universal planetary systems can distract a pure devotee of the Lord, such a devotee can never possibly fall or become inimical to the Lord’s service.