Destroy Debt before Dying

Srimad Bhagavatam 10.84.38-39 - Destroy Debt before Dying (download mp3)
by Dwarkadhish Prabhu at ISKCON Chowpatty

SB 10.84.38
vittaisanam yajña-danair
 grhair dara-sutaisanam
atma-lokaisanam deva
 kalena visrjed budhah
grame tyaktaisanah sarve
 yayur dhiras tapo-vanam

An intelligent person should learn to renounce his desire for wealth by performing sacrifices and acts of charity. He should learn to renounce his desire for wife and children by experiencing family life. And he should learn to renounce his desire for promotion to a higher planet in his next life, O saintly Vasudeva, by studying the effects of time. Self-controlled sages who have thus renounced their attachment to household life go to the forest to perform austerities.

SB 10.84.39
rnais tribhir dvijo jato
 devarsi-pitrnam prabho
yajñadhyayana-putrais tany
 anistirya tyajan patet

Dear Prabhu, a member of the twice-born classes is born with three kinds of debts — those owed to the demigods, to the sages and to his forefathers. If he leaves his body without first liquidating these debts by performing sacrifice, studying the scriptures and begetting children, he will fall down into a hellish condition.

Concerning the special obligations of a brahmana, the sruti states, jayamano vai brahmanas tribhir rnavañ jayate brahmacaryena rsibhyo yajñena devebhyah prajaya pitrbhyah: “Whenever a brahmana takes birth, three debts are born along with him. He can pay his debt to the sages by celibacy, his debt to the demigods by sacrifice, and his debt to his forefathers by begetting children.”