Exalted Position of Varuna Dev

Srimad Bhagavatam 10.28.01-02 - Exalted Position of Varuna Dev (download mp3)
by Baladev Prabhu at ISKCON Chowpatty

SB 10.28.1
sri-badarayanir uvaca
ekadasyam niraharah
 samabhyarcya janardanam
snatum nandas tu kalindyam
 dvadasyam jalam avisat

Sri Badarayani said: Having worshiped Lord Janardana and fasted on the Ekadasi day, Nanda Maharaja entered the water of the Kalindi on the Dvadasi to take his bath.

SB 10.28.2
tam grhitvanayad bhrtyo
 varunasyasuro ’ntikam
avaj├▒ayasurim velam
 pravistam udakam nisi

Because Nanda Maharaja entered the water in the dark of night, disregarding that the time was inauspicious, a demoniac servant of Varuna seized him and brought him to his master.

Nanda Maharaja was intent on breaking his fast during the Dvadasi day, of which there remained only a few minutes. Thus he entered the water to bathe at an inauspicious time, before the first dawn light.

The servant of Varuna who arrested Nanda Maharaja is stated here to be an asura, or demon, for obvious reasons. First, the servant was foolishly ignorant of Nanda Maharaja’s position as the pastime father of the Supreme Absolute Truth. Also, Nanda Maharaja’s intention was to carry out the injunctions of scripture; therefore Varuna’s servant should not have arrested Nanda on the technical grounds that he bathed in the Yamuna at an inauspicious time. Later in this chapter Varuna himself will say, ajanata mamakena mudhena: “This was done by my ignorant servant, who is a fool.” This foolish servant did not understand the position of Krsna or Nanda Maharaja or devotional service to the Lord.

In conclusion, it is clear that Lord Krsna wanted to give His personal audience to Varuna and simultaneously accomplish other didactic purposes. Thus this wonderful pastime will now unfold.