Srimad Bhagavatam 01.18.50 - Untouched in this Touchy World (download mp3)
by Prem Kishor Prabhu at ISKCON Chowpatty
prāyaśaḥ sādhavo loke
parair dvandveṣu yojitāḥ
na vyathanti na hṛṣyanti
yata ātmā ’guṇāśrayaḥ
Generally the transcendentalists, even though engaged by others in the dualities of the material world, are not distressed. Nor do they take pleasure [in worldly things], for they are transcendentally engaged.
The transcendentalists are the empiric philosophers, the mystics and the devotees of the Lord. Empiric philosophers aim at the perfection of merging into the being of the Absolute, mystics aim at perceiving the all-pervading Supersoul, and the devotees of the Lord are engaged in the transcendental loving service of the Personality of Godhead. Since Brahman, Paramātmā and Bhagavān are different phases of the same Transcendence, all these transcendentalists are beyond the three modes of material nature. Material distresses and happinesses are products of the three modes, and therefore the causes of such material distress and happiness have nothing to do with the transcendentalists. The King was a devotee, and the ṛṣi was a mystic. Therefore both of them were unattached to the accidental incident created by the supreme will. The playful child was an instrument in fulfilling the Lord’s will.
Thus end the Bhaktivedanta purports of the First Canto, Eighteenth Chapter, of the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, entitled “Mahārāja Parīkṣit Cursed by a Brāhmaṇa Boy.”