Right And Wrong Interpretations

Srimad Bhagavatam 09.04.41-44 - Right And Wrong Interpretations (download mp3)
by Radha Dyuti Prabhu at ISKCON Chowpatty

 SB 9.4.41
ity apah prasya rajarsis
cintayan manasacyutam
pratyacasta kuru-srestha
dvijagamanam eva sah

O best of the Kuru dynasty, after he drank some water, King Ambarisa, meditating upon the Supreme Personality of Godhead within his heart, waited for the return of the great mystic Durvasa Muni.

SB 9.4.42
durvasa yamuna-kulat
krtavasyaka agatah
raj├▒abhinanditas tasya
bubudhe cestitam dhiya

After executing the ritualistic ceremonies to be performed at noon, Durvasa returned from the bank of the Yamuna. The King received him well, offering all respects, but Durvasa Muni, by his mystic power, could understand that King Ambarisa had drunk water without his permission.

SB 9.4.43
manyuna pracalad-gatro
bubhuksitas ca sutaram
krta├▒jalim abhasata

Still hungry, Durvasa Muni, his body trembling, his face curved and his eyebrows crooked in a frown, angrily spoke as follows to King Ambarisa, who stood before him with folded hands.

SB 9.4.44
aho asya nr-samsasya
sriyonmattasya pasyata
dharma-vyatikramam visnor

Alas, just see the behavior of this cruel man! He is not a devotee of Lord Visnu. Being proud of his material opulence and his position, he considers himself God. Just see how he has transgressed the laws of religion.

Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura has diverted the entire meaning of this verse as spoken by Durvasa Muni. Durvasa Muni used the word nr-samsasya to indicate that the King was cruel, but Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura interprets it to mean that the King's character was glorified by all the local people. He says that the word nr means "by all the local people" and that samsasya means "of he (Ambarisa) whose character was glorified." Similarly, one who is very rich becomes mad because of his wealth and is therefore called sriya-unmattasya, but Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura interprets these words to mean that although Maharaja Ambarisa was such an opulent king, he was not mad after money, for he had already surpassed the madness of material opulence. Similarly, the word isa-maninah is interpreted to mean that he was so respectful to the Supreme Personality of Godhead that he did not transgress the laws for observing Ekadasi-parana, despite the thinking of Durvasa Muni, for he only took water. In this way, Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura has supported Ambarisa Maharaja and all his activities.