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Srimad Bhagavatam (Bhagavata Purana) :: Conto 7

What Prahlâda Learned in the Womb

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Srimad Bhagavatam » Conto 7   

 What Prahlâda Learned in the Womb

(1)  Nârada Muni said [to Yudhishthhira, see 7.1: 13]: 'Thus being questioned by the daitya sons spoke he, the Asura who was a great devotee of the Lord, smiling to them remembering what I had told him. (2) S'rî Prahlâda said: 'When our father left for Mandarâcala to do his austerities, were the godly of a great war effort against the Dânavâs. (3) 'Thanks heaven is because of his own sins the sinner, who was always oppressing everyone, now like a serpent eaten by the ants [see: 7.3: 15-16 ]', so the ones of Indra said. (4-5) Hearing how by their great display of violence one after the other was killed by them, fled the asura leaders in fear in all directions. In their great haste and desire to stay alive they forgot about their wives, children and wealth, homes, relatives, animals and the articles of their households. (6) In the heat of their victory plundered the Suras the king's palace, while Indra to that occasion captured the queen, my mother.

(7) The devarishi who happened to arrive there on the spot saw how she on the road, in great fear crying like a kurarî [an osprey], was led away. (8) He said: 'O King of the Suras, you shouldn't drag this one away, she's innocent, release her right away, o greatest of fortune, she is the chaste wife of someone else!'

(9) Indra said: 'She carries the seed of the sura enemy in her womb, let her remain in our custody until she delivers. With that objective realized I will release her.

(10) Nârada said: 'There is nothing wrong with this child, you should see him as a great devotee, the very best even; he, being such a stout servant, will not find his death by your hand.'

(11) Thus speaking to him, released Indra her out of respect for the devarishi his words, out of respect for someone dear to the Eternal One. In their devotion they circumambulated her and then returned to their heaven. (12) Thereafter took the rishi my mother to his âs'rama reassuring her: 'Stay here my child, until the arrival of your husband.' (13) As he so said lived she thus with the devarishi with nothing to fear from anywhere for as long as the penance of the daitya leader was not completed. (14) For the welfare of the child she was expecting was the faithful woman in her desire to deliver it, there unto Nârada of service with great dedication. (15) The rishi as the man in control gave out of compassion her, in fact the both of us, instructions on the truth of dharma and spiritual knowledge, especially pointing it out to me without a tinge of material interest [compare 1.2: 7]. (16) That all was, indeed because it happened such a long time ago and because of my mothers female disposition, forgotten by her, but I, blessed by the sage, did not and even today has the recollection of it not left me [see also B.G. 9: 32]. (17) You yourselves too can have it from me if you believe in my words; provided a firm faith is the intelligence of the very best there just as well for women and small children as it is there for me [see also B.G. 18: 55]. (18) Like in due course of time from the Controller of all Forms with flowers and fruits the body of a tree can be seen, can with one's body the six conditions be observed [of being born, existing as a person, growing, transforming, dwindling and dying] that one undergoes beginning with one's birth, but that does not apply to the soul [see also B.G. 2: 20]. (19-20) The soul is eternal, does not dwindle, is pure, the individual, the knower of the field, the original foundation, the unchanging, self-illumined, actual cause, pervading all, independent and unmoving. From these twelve symptoms of the soul is a conscious person impelled to give up the false conception of 'I' and 'mine' that originates from the illusion of everything that belongs to having a body [see also 6.4: 24]. (21) Just as gold locked up in the stones, that by the golddiggers in different ways are won in the goldmines, by the experts easily is extracted, can from within the fields of organic bodies [see also B.G. 13: 1-4] likewise by spiritual processes the experts in telling the difference between matter and soul obtain the brahmin goal. (22) The teachers of example speak of eight types of material energy [B.G. 7: 4] to which there are exactly three modes and sixteen modifications [consciousness, the senses of action and perception and the elements, see also 1.3: 1]; it is the individual living entity, the person, that connects all these. (23) The body that moving about and standing alone is but a combination of all of them together is thus of the dual and in this matter is it the [original of the] person that one must look for when one says 'not this, not that' [neti neti], which is the way to give up on what is not the soul. (24) Being in touch with matter and being apart from it are, when they with the mindfulness to the soul are purified by mature discrimination, thus the ones reticent who are of serious analysis with the creation, maintenance and destruction. (25) Of the intelligence there are the waking state, the dreaming, and the deep sleep; the One by whom those various modalities are perceived, that One apart from all, is the Original Person of Transcendence. (26) One should understand the constitutional position of the soul in the out of intelligence [neti neti] refuting of the dividedness produced by the different actions of the three modes of nature which are alike scents that are carried by the air [see also B.G. 3: 42]. (27) This ocean of matter rooting in ignorance that is without factual meaning, is of the living entity the door behind which he is confined by the operating modes of nature, like being caught in a dream.'

(28)' Therefore from the bottom of your heart you must burn the weeds of all karma of being conditioned by the modes of nature, in the yoga realizing the cessation of the stream of consciousness. (29) To that is of the thousands of processes this one, as offered by the supreme of devotion that [through the Lord and the devotee] relates to the Supreme Controller, the one process which, once followed, soon brings the peace [consider also B.G. 18: 66, and the footnote]. (30-31) Properly attend to a guru with faith and devotion, offer all that was gained, be of association with the holy and the devoted and of worship unto the Controller, take heed of the relevant discourses, sing about His qualities and activities, meditate on the feet and observe the rules exercising respect for the deities. (32) Hari, the Supreme Lord is situated in all living beings; being of the highest esteem for all those creatures and for what drives them is one of understanding for the Supreme Controller. (33) Thus having subdued the six symptoms [of sensual weaknesses: lust, anger, greed, illusion, madness and jealousy] is the devotional service rendered unto the Controller, Vâsudeva, the Supreme Lord, of which the peace and love is obtained. (34) When hearing about the uncommon activities and might of His exploits and His qualities as evinced by the pastimes of His different appearances, will of great jubilation there be horripilation, tears, a faltering voice and loud aloud chanting, shouting and dancing. (35) Like when one is haunted by a ghost are there sometimes laughs, exclamations, meditative moods, exercises of respect towards other living beings, prolonged heavy breathing and utterances like: 'O Lord, Master of the World, Nârâyana!'; thus is one free from shame absorbed in thoughts about the True Self. (36) This way engaged is one, thus thinking in love about the ultimate, liberated from all obstacles on one's path and is one in one's body and mind harmonized; the so very powerful seed of desire has then been burned by the exercise of bhakti of which one achieves the One Beyond it All [**]. (37) Constantly being in touch with Him, Adhokshaja, is the contaminated mind of an embodied being in this world and the repetitious of its material existence brought to a full stop; the advanced all know of that spiritual heaven of happiness and therefore, from the core of your heart, sing in devotion for your heart's true Controller [see also B.G. 18: 54].

(38) And what would be the problem of that, o asura sons; what would in one's own exercise of always having a place for Him in one's heart, with Him always there as the Soul to one's soul and the Friend Unlimited, all together be the need of providing for all that the sensual pleasure would require [compare 7.6: 19 and B.G. 9: 26]? (39) Wealth, women, one's animals, children and all that, houses, land, elephants, a treasury, all the luxury, all that economy and sense gratification is to the one whose lifespan is but short, the one who inevitably dies, lost in a second; how much pleasure can a thing so temporary bring? (40) Likewise are the higher destinations that are achieved by great sacrifice, all perishable, however more comfortable they might be; they are not free from disturbances and therefore is He of whom one has never seen or heard any fault, with the bhakti as it is explained, the Supreme Ruler to be worshiped for self-realization [see also B.G. 8: 16]. (41) From the material knowledge which is there for the purpose of the many activities in this world, one thinks oneselves highly advanced, but again and again is the unfailing result of a man waging like this to have arrived at the opposite. (42) The determination of the karmi [the person sweating for results] to be happy, to be liberated from misery out here, is an ambition that always leads to the unhappiness that conceals the [lasting] happiness which follows from not craving the money. (43) The desirables one wishes for in the willful actions for which the living being entered the world, result indeed in the physical body that one has, but perishable as it is, is it one's enemy when one tries to leave it for what it is in order to embrace the spirit. (44) What more is there to say, ultimately is one separated from the children, wife, home, wealth and all, the realm, the treasury, the elephant, the ministers and servants and relatives, on which one based one's self-esteem. (45) What is the value of all of this to the soul? Most trivial with the perishable body appear these things to be necessary, but they are useless for the ocean full of the nectar of eternal happiness.

(46) Let it be clear that all that someone in a material body in this world does for his personal benefit, o asura sons, beginning with lusting after sex, with the temporary leads to the heavy suffering that is the result of the workload of one's karma. (47) For the embodied one begins the karma with the body that one acquired as a consequence of the way one acted; because of that karma one acquires another body, and that repetition one indeed owes to one's ignorance. (48) Therefore depends all the regulation of one's income and desires for sense gratification, as well as the religion thereto, on the glorification of the Soul above the soul, the Lord divinely indifferent who is the Controller [of the Time and the karma]. (49) Of all living beings is He the Lord, the original source, the one pulling the strings, the Beloved, who by His different energies has created them in being the Individual Soul of all individual entities together. (50) Whether god or demon, man or ghost or a singer of heaven, in rendering service at Mukunda's feet do we all become equally fulfilled by all of His! (51-52) Being a perfect brahmin, a fine godly person or a saint, o asura descendants, will not suffice for pleasing Mukunda, nor do good conduct or vast learning. Neither will charity or austerity, worship, cleanliness or vows; the Lord is satisfied by unalloyed devotional service, the rest is but outer appearance [see also B.G. 9: 30 and 1.2: 8]. (53) Execute therefore, unto Hari the Supreme Lord the bhakti, o dânavâ sons, for He, omnipresent as the Soul and Controller of all beings alive, is alike one's own self. (54) O Daityas, the ghosts and demons, the women and the laborers, the cowherds, the birds, the animals and all the sinners, without any doubt can all arrive at and be part of the qualities of the Infallible One, of Acyuta [see also B.G. 4: 9]. (55) Of the living entity in this world is the following considered to be the real transcendental self-interest: to care for association in the unalloyed devotion unto Govinda [He as the blessing of the cows] who is found everywhere [see also bhajan 1 and 2].

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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/