Brihad Bhagavatamrita (commentary)

by Śrī Śrīmad Bhaktivedānta Nārāyana Gosvāmī Mahārāja | 2005 | 440,179 words | ISBN-13: 9781935428329

The Brihad-bhagavatamrita Verse 2.2.200, English translation, including commentary (Dig-darshini-tika): an important Vaishnava text dealing with the importance of devotional service. The Brihad-bhagavatamrita, although an indepent Sanskrit work, covers the essential teachings of the Shrimad Bhagavatam (Bhagavata-purana). This is verse 2.2.200 contained in Chapter 2—Jnana (knowledge)—of Part two (prathama-khanda).

Sanskrit text, Unicode transliteration, Word-for-word and English translation of verse 2.2.200:

अहो श्लाघ्यः कथं मोक्षो दैत्यानाम् अपि दृश्यते ।
तैर् एव शास्त्रैर् निन्द्यन्ते ये गो-विप्रादि-घाटिनः ॥ २०० ॥

aho ślāghyaḥ kathaṃ mokṣo daityānām api dṛśyate |
tair eva śāstrair nindyante ye go-viprādi-ghāṭinaḥ || 200 ||

aho–oh!; ślāghyaḥ–worthy of praise; katham–how?; mokṣaḥ–liberation; daityānām–of the demons; api–even; dṛśyate–it is seen; taiḥ–by them; eva–even; śāstraiḥ–by the scriptures; nindyante–who are worthy of censure; ye–which; go–cows; vipra–and brāhmaṇas; ādi–and so forth; ghātinaḥ–slaying.

Ah! How can liberation be praiseworthy? It is attained even by demons who are killers of cows and brāhmaṇas, demons who are castigated by liberation’s own adherents. Therefore, can such an object that is attained by the wicked be acceptable for the noble?

Commentary: Dig-darśinī-ṭīkā with Bhāvānuvāda

(By Śrīla Sanātana Gosvāmī himself including a deep purport of that commentary)

Despite this discussion, someone might still raise a doubt as to whether bhakti is superior to mukti. Therefore in these two verses, beginning here with aho, the bhakti-śāstras present another argument based on logic. They say, “Oh! Demons such as Kaṃsa and Aghāsura were monstrously evil. If such atrocious demons attain liberation, how can that state be considered praiseworthy?”

Here it is pointed out that while demons like Kaṃsa achieved liberation–something which is only extremely rarely attained–even those who hold liberation dear criticize such demoniac persons. How can something obtained by those who are despicable be considered acceptable by the cultured?

Śrī Gopa-kumāra might ask, “Why would those who are devoted to liberation criticize the demons?”

The bhakti-śāstras reply, “Because they (the demons) are killers of cows and brāhmaṇas and destroyers of Vedic sacrifices (yajñas) and scriptures.

This is seen in the words of the ministers of Kaṃsa, as stated in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (10.4.40):

तस्मात् सर्वात्मना राजन् ब्राह्मणान् ब्रह्म-वादिनः
तपस्विनो यज्ञ-शीलान् गाश् च हन्मो हविर्-दुघाः

tasmāt sarvātmanā rājan brāhmaṇān brahma-vādinaḥ
tapasvino yajña-śīlān gāś ca hanmo havir-dughāḥ

O King! We will then totally destroy all the brāhmaṇas who are learned in the Vedas, as well as the ascetics, those who perform fire sacrifices, and the cows that supply ghee for the sacrifices.

“There are many such examples of proof. Therefore it is said that whatever is attained by despicable people is similarly despicable.”

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