by Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura Mahasaya | 2010 | 123,965 words

The Bhajana-rahasya Text 15, English translation, including commentary (vritti). The Bhajana-rahasya is a compilation of verses describing the mercy of the eight pairs of names (Yugala-nama) of the Maha-mantra. This is text 15 belonging to the chapter “Caturtha-yama-sadhana (Madhyahna-kaliya-bhajana–ruci-bhajana)” representing from the second prahara until three-and-a-half praharas: approximately 11.00 a.m.–3.30 p.m.

One should endeavour to attain pure unalloyed devotion (śuddhaahaitukī-bhakti). Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (1.5.18) states:

तस्यैव हेतोः प्रयतेत कोविदो न लभ्यते यद् भ्रमताम् उपर्यधः
तल् लभ्यते दुःखवद्-अन्यतः सुखं कालेन सर्वत्र गभीर-रंहसा

tasyaiva hetoḥ prayateta kovido na labhyate yad bhramatām uparyadhaḥ
tal labhyate duḥkhavad-anyataḥ sukhaṃ kālena sarvatra gabhīra-raṃhasā

[Śrī Nārada said:] In the course of time, I have been wandering from the seven higher planets to the seven lower, such as Sutalaloka, but I have not attained eternal, transcendental happiness, which wise persons endeavour to taste. Just as misery comes without endeavour, by the influence of the grave, quicklymoving time, happiness also comes without any endeavour. What, therefore, is the use of endeavouring for worldly happiness?

विना यत्ने दुःखेर घटना येन हय
सेइ रूपे काल-क्रमे सुखेर उदय

vinā yatne duḥkhera ghaṭanā yena haya
sei rūpe kāla-krame sukhera udaya

अतएव चौद्द-लोके दुर्लभ ये धन
सेइ भक्ति-जन्य यत्न करे बुध-गण

ataeva caudda-loke durlabha ye dhana
sei bhakti-janya yatna kare budha-gaṇa

Commentary: Bhajana-rahasya-vṛtti:

A devotee understands that any pleasure within the material universe is insignificant compared to even the slightest experience of the nectar and fragrance of the Supreme Lord’s lotus feet. One who has only tasted molasses will give it up when he tastes fragrant sugar-candy. Similarly, before actually cultivating devotion to Śrī Bhagavān in the association of pure devotees, the living entity who is allured by the flowery words of the Vedas desires to enjoy nectar, nectarean food and the other heavenly pleasures of Svarga. Alternatively, by the influence of association with jñānīs, the living entity desires liberation. Pure devotees do not accept either of these–they only desire the happiness of loving service to Śrī Bhagavān through bhakti. This Text tells us that those who are genuinely wise search only for that constant, eternal, transcendental happiness that is only obtained in Hari-dhāma (Vaikuṇṭha). This transcendental happiness is not available to the living entity who wanders throughout the fourteen worlds searching for mundane enjoyment.

Material happiness is even obtained in the body of a hog. According to his karma, the living entity sometimes tastes sorrow and difficulties, and sometimes he effortlessly tastes happiness. Therefore, the scriptures unanimously instruct that one should not endeavour to obtain that which is temporary and material. The jīva’s goal is neither to prevent his material suffering nor to be successful in endeavours for happiness. Such attempts are simply childish fickleness. The wise give up searching for these temporary things and endeavour to attain service to Śrī Hari, which is the soul’s eternal dharma.

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