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Srimad Bhagavatam (Bhagavata Purana) :: Conto 3a

Description of the Kingdom of God

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Srimad Bhagavatam » Conto 3a   

 Description of the Kingdom of God

(1) Maitreya said: 'Diti was afraid that she by the power of [the seed of] the great Prajâpati for the time of a century would destroy the power of others and distress the God-fearing people. (2) The world was deprived of light because of this [threat] and thus the local authorities who saw their power diminished consulted with the creator of the universe [Lord Brahmâ] about the darkness that expanded in all directions. (3) The demigods said: 'You, o mighty one, must be knowing about this darkness we are so very afraid of. Your supreme divinity is not affected by time and thus nothing is hidden for you. (4) O god of gods, sustainer of the universe, you as the crown jewel of all the guardians of the spiritual and material worlds know about the intentions of all living beings. (5) We offer you whose strength is found in wisdom our obeisances. Having obtained this body composed of external energy and in acceptance of your distinguished mode [of passion], we pay our respects o unseen source. (6) The ones who are unfaltering in their devotion meditate upon you, the origin of all beings, the absolute consisting of the true and untrue and the self in which all worlds are connected. (7) For those who are mature in the practice of yoga and have attained your mercy in controlling the senses and mind by means of their breath, there is no defeat in any way. (8) Him whose directions are the lead for all living entities the way a rope is the lead for a bull, him under whose authority offerings are presented, that most important personality, you, we offer our obeisances. (9) Because of this darkness we can't get around to our prescribed duties. We ask you to act to our good fortune o great Lord, please grant us surrendered souls, the magnanimous mercy of your glance. (10) O god, this semen of Kas'yapa deposited in the womb of Diti, causes complete darkness in all directions like a fire loaded with too much firewood.'

(11) Maitreya said: 'O mighty-armed one, he, the self-born one who in the prayers was addressed as the Supreme Lord, with a smile satisfied the godly ones and gave a reply in sweet words. (12) Brahmâ said: 'They who before you were born from my mind and are headed by Sanaka [Sanâtana, Sanandana en Sanat-kumâra], traveled free from expectations the distances between the people of the spiritual and material worlds. (13) One day they who are free from all material contamination entered Vaikunthha, the eternal abode of Vishnu, the Supreme Lord, the realm for which one prays in all the worlds. (14) All the persons living there have the same form as the Lord of Vaikunthha and live free from any desire because of their devotional service of continuous worship of the Supreme Personality. (15) The Lord of all Fortune, the original person who is understood through the scriptures, dwells there as the personification of the religious principles in order to accept in His goodness our purity to the greater happiness of us who belong to Him. (16) In that realm where everything is spiritual and personal, there are forests that for the sake of happiness yield to all desires with [desire] trees full of splendid flowers and fruits throughout all the seasons. (17) Living in palaces with their wives the devotees free from all inauspicious qualities are always singing there about the Supreme Lord, and try to ignore the mind blowing fragrance that is carried by the wind of the mâdhavî flowers that full of nectar are blossoming in the midst of the water. (18) When the king of the bumblebees loudly sings the glories of the Lord, the tumult of the pigeons, cuckoos, cranes, cakravâkas and gallinules, swans, parrots, partridges and peacocks stops for a while. (19) The fragrant mandâra, kunda, kurabaka, utpala, campaka, arna, punnâga, nâgakes'ara, bakula, lily and pârijâta, all agree that the tulsî plant [the basil plant the Lord adorns Himself with and] which in the form of a garland is appreciated [by Him] for her smell, best of them all honors the good spirit of renunciation out there. (20) By simply being of obeisance to the Lord His feet the devotees earned the palaces standing everywhere that are made of lapis lazuli with emeralds and gold whose [female] inhabitants have large hips and beautiful smiling faces. But they, with their friendly laughing and joking, with their minds absorbed in Krishna never give rise to any lust. (21) In that house of the Lord [sometimes], reflected in the crystal clear walls inlaid with gold, the Goddess of Fortune is seen who is free from all faults. She then assumes a beautiful form with tinkling [bangles at her] feet and playing with a lotus flower; and that grace of her is something for which the other ladies manifest themselves with the greatest zeal as true scrubwomen. (22) They surrounded by maidservants worship in their gardens on coral banks to ponds with pellucid, nectarean water the Supreme Lord with tulsî and imagine, seeing the beauty reflected in the water of the goddess her locks, that the Lord kisses her face.  (23) How unfortunate are they who never get to this Vaikunthha creation of the Vanquisher of All Sin, but rather hear about other subject matters phrased in bad words that kill one's intelligence. Alas, such persons far removed from the values of life are, devoid of all shelter, cast into the deepest darkness. (24) They who are not of worship for the Supreme Lord and have not realized the human way of life and acquired knowledge about the Absolute and the proper code of conduct [dharma] the way we [Lord Brahmâ and the demigods] desired it, are alas bewildered by His omnipresent, illusory energy. (25) [But] following in the footsteps of [me] the chief of the demigods they will go to Vaikunthha, the realm situated above mine, who attracted to each other in discussions about the Lord His desirable, supreme qualities and glories feel ecstasy, have tears in their eyes and shiver with their bodies, and thus keep Yamarâja [the Lord of death] at a distance.'
(26) [Brahmâ continued:] 'When the sages [headed by Sanaka] by dint of their spiritual potency reached Vaikunthha, they experienced a transcendental ecstasy they never had experienced before. It was the place, radiating with the palaces of the most deserving and learned devotees, where the teacher of the universe rules who is the object of worship in all the worlds. (27) After passing there through six gates without taking much interest, they at the seventh gate ran into two demigods of the same age who carried valuable maces, bracelets, earrings, helmets and beautiful garments. (28) Placed around their necks there was between their four blue arms a garland of forest flowers with intoxicated bees around them. But looking about with their arched eyebrows, restless breathing and reddish eyes they seemed somewhat agitated. (29) Seeing the both of them standing at the gate the sons of Brahmâ, as they did before, passed without taking any notice the golden and diamond doors; they were the great sages who on their own accord moved everywhere without being checked or doubted. (30) When they saw them, four naked boys of age who had realized the truth of the self but who looked as if they weren't older than five years, the two gatekeepers in disregard of the glory and the etiquette, in an attitude offensive to the Lord wrongfully blocked their way with their staffs. (31) Being faced with the slight hindrance of the two doorkeepers who refused them before the eyes of the inhabitants of Vaikunthha, despite of them being by far the fittest of the Lord, their eyes in their eagerness to see their most beloved one suddenly turned red out of anger ['the younger brother of lust'].

(32) The sages said: 'Who are the two of you, who by dint of their actions in the past have attained the service of the Supreme Lord? Whoever of the devotees who in Him are without anxiety and enmity, can be as falsely engaged as you? Who in the world is of such a crude mentality that betrays the confidence? (33) No one here is strange to the Supreme Personality who contains all in His abdomen; the living entity has its place in the Supersoul the way the small portion of air in one's lungs is part of the air outside. As a sober person seeing the two of you dressed up like inhabitants of Vaikunthha, like awakend people who discriminate between body and soul, one wonders how such a terrible thing can exist. How in the world could this have risen with Him? (34) Therefore, in order to secure the grace of the Lord of Vaikunthha, according to our opinion the appropriate measure for you antipathetic minds who see things in opposition, is that the both of you depart from here for the material world where one lives with this threefold sinfulness that is the enemy of the living being [lust, anger and greed, see B.G. 16: 21].'

(35) The two [doorkeepers] who understood that a terrible brahmin curse had been pronounced by them, a curse that cannot be countered by any weapon, at once stricken with fear for the devotees of the Lord fell down to grasp their feet in great anxiety. (36) 'Let it be so that you have punished us for our sins. A lack of respect for great sages like you cannot go unpunished. But we pray that we, with a bit of your infinite compassion for our repentance, not in a state of illusion will lose the memory of  the Supreme Lord when we have to descend in the material world.'

(37) That very moment the Supreme Lord from whose navel the lotus sprouted learned about the offense against the righteous sages and came to their delight to the place accompanied by His Goddess of Fortune, walking with the very same lotus feet that are sought by the hermits and the wise. (38) Seeing Him coming forward with all His associates and paraphernalia, the sages, now seeing the one whom they always had been looking for, fell into ecstasy over the sight of the câmaras [fans of yak-tail] that like beautiful swans waved a cool breeze that moved the pearls of His white umbrella, making them look like drops of water to a reflected moon. (39) Blessing all with His auspicious face as the desirable shelter, He affectionately looked upon them and touched them expanding in their hearts. With His blackish skin and His broad chest decorated by the Goddess of Fortune, He spread the good fortune as the summit of the spiritual worlds and the abode of the soul. (40) Covered by yellow cloth He had a brightly shining girdle around His hips and humming bees about His garland of forest flowers. On His wrists he had lovely bracelets and while one of His hands rested on the shoulder of the son of Vinatâ [Garuda] He waved with another one a lotus flower. (41) Shining brighter than lightening, the decoration of His alligator shaped earrings completed the countenance of His cheeks and straight nose. He wore a gem-studded crown,  carried a charming most precious necklace between His stout arms and the Kaustubha jewel adorned His neck. (42) With His presence He outshone the smiles of the Goddess of Beauty thus thought His devotees in their meditation. The sages couldn't get enough of the sight of the very beautiful figure so worshipable for me and for S'iva as well as for all of you, and that made them joyously bow down their heads. (43) When the breeze, carrying the fragrance of tulsî leaves from the toes of the lotus feet, entered their nostrils, they experienced an inner transformation, even though they in body and mind were devoted to [the impersonal realization of] words. (44) Thereafter looking up they saw His face that resembled the inside of a blue lotus and also saw the even more beautiful jasmine flower lips smiling. Thus having achieved their life's aim they again looked down at the ruby red nails of His lotus feet and then meditated upon their shelter. (45) For those people who seek liberation in this world by the paths of yoga He is the object of meditation approved by the great ones. With the display of His human form pleasing the eyes He, eternally present as the Connecting One, is praised as the perfection of the eight achievements, a perfection that cannot be achieved by others [the so-called eight perfections or siddhis are: animâ: smallness, mahimâ: greatness, garimâ: weight, laghimâ: lightness, prâpti: free access, prâkâmyam: doing at wish, vas'itva: control over the elements and îs'itvam: lordship over all].

(46) The Kumâras said: 'Even though You are seated in the heart You are not manifest to the ones far removed from the soul. Today, o Unlimited One, we see You face to face, You who through our ears reached our inner being when we heard our father [Brahmâ] describe the mysteries of Your appearance. (47) You o Supreme Lord who with Your personality consisting of pure goodness, brings delight to all [who are like us], we at present know as the ultimate reality of the soul. This reality one may, according to the understanding of the sages who are not interested in a material life, grasp by Your grace in steadfast devotional service with a heart free from attachments. (48) They [who follow this practice] do not even care about Your imperishable beatitude [kaivalya, enlightenment] or about any other minor form of happiness with which they may fear the frowning of Your eyebrows. They, o Supreme One, take shelter of Your lotus feet and the narrations about Your pure glories so worthy to be sung by the very expert knowers of Your rasas [the emotional mellows one may have with You]. (49) From the sinful lives we desired we may be of low births and have minds busy like bees, but if we may be engaged at Your lotus feet and fill our ears with Your transcendental qualities, our words will become as beautiful as the tulsî leaves at Your mercy. (50) We obtained so much satisfaction from seeing this eternal form that You manifested o Lord of great renown. Let us therefore offer our obeisances to You, the Supreme Personality of Godhead who is recognized by spiritual persons like us and not by those who are not spiritual.'

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SOURCE: Translation: Anand Aadhar Prabhu, http://bhagavata.org/

Production: the Filognostic Association of The Order of Time, with special thanks to Sakhya Devi Dasi for proofreading and correcting the manuscript. http://theorderoftime.com/info/guests-friends.html

The sourcetexts, illustrations and music to this translation one can find following the links from: http://bhagavata.org/