Understanding the complexity of this Material World

Srimad Bhagavatam 11.11.15 - Understanding the complexity of this Material World (download mp3)
by Rohini Nandan Pabhu at ISKCON Chowpatty

SB 11.11.15
yasyatma himsyate himsrair
 yena kiñcid yadrcchaya
arcyate va kvacit tatra
 na vyatikriyate budhah

Sometimes for no apparent reason one’s body is attacked by cruel people or violent animals. At other times and in other places, one will suddenly be offered great respect or worship. One who becomes neither angry when attacked nor satisfied when worshiped is actually intelligent.

If one does not become angry when attacked for no apparent reason, and if one does not become enlivened when glorified or worshiped, then one has passed the test of self-realization and is considered fixed in spiritual intelligence. Uddhava asked Lord Krsna, kair va jñayeta laksanaih: by what symptoms can a self-realized person be recognized? Just as Lord Krsna enlightened Arjuna, He now explains the same subject matter to Uddhava. In this verse the Lord describes symptoms by which it is very easy to recognize a saintly person, for a normal person becomes furious when criticized or attacked and overwhelmed with joy when glorified by others. There is a similar statement by Yajñavalkya to the effect that one who is actually intelligent does not become angry though pricked with thorns and does not become satisfied at heart merely by being worshiped with auspicious paraphernalia such as sandalwood.

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