Will Of Providence Is Higher To Social Customs

Srimad Bhagavatam 09.18.17-21 - Will Of Providence Is Higher To Social Customs (download mp3)
by Akincana Krishna Prabhu at ISKCON Chowpatty

 SB 9.18.17
evam-vidhaih suparusaih
ksiptvacarya-sutam satim
sarmistha praksipat kupe
vasas cadaya manyuna

Using such unkind words, Sarmistha rebuked Devayani, the daughter of Sukracarya. In anger, she took away Devayani's garments and threw Devayani into a well.

SB 9.18.18
tasyam gatayam sva-grham
yayatir mrgayam caran
prapto yadrcchaya kupe
jalarthi tam dadarsa ha

After throwing Devayani into the well, Sarmistha went home. Meanwhile, King Yayati, while engaged in a hunting excursion, went to the well to drink water and by chance saw Devayani.

SB 9.18.19
dattva svam uttaram vasas
tasyai raja vivasase
grhitva panina panim
ujjahara daya-parah

Seeing Devayani naked in the well, King Yayati immediately gave her his upper cloth. Being very kind to her, he caught her hand with his own and lifted her out.
 SB 9.18.20-21
tam viram ahausanasi
prema-nirbharaya gira
rajams tvaya grhito me
panih para-purañjaya
hasta-graho 'paro ma bhud
grhitayas tvaya hi me
esa isa-krto vira
sambandho nau na paurusah

With words saturated with love and affection, Devayani said to King Yayati: O great hero, O King, conqueror of the cities of your enemies, by accepting my hand you have accepted me as your married wife. Let me not be touched by others, for our relationship as husband and wife has been made possible by providence, not by any human being.

While taking Devayani out of the well, King Yayati must certainly have appreciated her youthful beauty, and therefore he might have asked her which caste she belonged to. Thus Devayani would have immediately replied, "We are already married because you have accepted my hand." Uniting the hands of the bride and bridegroom is a system perpetually existing in all societies. Therefore, as soon as Yayati accepted Devayani's hand, they could be regarded as married. Because Devayani was enamored with the hero Yayati, she requested him not to change his mind and let another come to marry her.