The Padma Purana

by N.A. Deshpande | 1951 | 1,261,945 words | ISBN-10: 8120838297 | ISBN-13: 9788120838291

This page describes carnal enjoyment is sinful which is chapter 100 of the English translation of the Padma Purana, one of the largest Mahapuranas, detailling ancient Indian society, traditions, geography, as well as religious pilgrimages (yatra) to sacred places (tirthas). This is the one hundredth chapter of the Patala-Khanda (Section On The Nether World) of the Padma Purana, which contains six books total consisting of at least 50,000 Sanskrit metrical verses.

Chapter 100 - Carnal Enjoyment Is Sinful

The king said:

1-4. I have been advised by you with words that are like the water of the milky sea, that have a viewpoint that is cool and pure, that are true and beautiful. O dear one, you have made me drink the nectar which has not come up from the ocean, which is not a substance, which is a medicine for the calamity, and which removes the disease in the form of the worldly existence. O brāhmaṇa, it is said that contact of the good gives delight to men, removes their sins, is a medicine for their life, and destroys old age and death. Due to the association of the good only, those desired objects difficult to obtain, are obtained.

5-11a. For him, who has bathed with (i.e. in the water of) Gaṅgā in the form of the company of the good, which removes sins, what is the use of (giving) gifts, (visiting) holy places, (practising) austerities and sacrifices? The good who know the ways of the world, who are tranquil, are the final emancipation for men who sink and come up in the ocean of the worldly existence, area strong boat for those who sink in the water(of the mundane existence). O lord, that my feeling desiring the happiness through lust only which was formerly there, has been reversed due to your sight and your words. One would lose a thousand existences for the happiness in one existence. A wise man collects the (fruit of) thousands of existences by means of (i.e. in) one existence. Oh! O brāhmaṇa, by me, a fool, whose heart was longing for carnal pleasures, my own good has not at all been done. Oh! (great was) the delusion of my mind due to which I threw my soul into an awful calamity, ending in misery and difficult to overcome. O holy one, I am pleased (as) I have been roused by your words.

11b-14. Please liberate me by giving me advice. Since you advised me due to my former meritorious deeds, I am (now) especially purified with the dust of your feet. O best among speakers, describe to me the rite of the month of Vaiśākha, which you have said to be removing all sins. O brāhmaṇa sage, for my emancipation from the sins (please) tell me: What are the gifts in that month? What (kind of) bath is prescribed? Who is the deity? Which are the rules?

Yama said:

15. O brāhmaṇa, that glorious Kaśyapa, the treasure of compassion, who was thus addressed, said words which were meritorious, auspicious and beneficial to all.

Kaśyapa said:

16-19. A wise man has to explain to you what is asked with a mind capable of putting together the earlier and later (ideas), and not to mean person of a wicked mind. There is no doubt that by giving in that way a good (i.e. proper) opinion to him who is engaged in sinful activities, the proper fruit of giving knowledge is obtained. One should not speak to anyone when not asked; so also to him who is asking unjustly. A wise man, even though he knows (the truth), should behave towards the people like a dumb man. (But) he should speak to his learned disciples and sons, though he is not asked. The good of those who have faith is (always) superior.

20-28a. O king, due to my words and due to certain religious merit you had acquired before, now you have become one of a pure heart. Your body having a sinful condition has now gone due to (your) having resorted to me. Due to your having heard the knowledge of religious merit, it has (now) become one having a meritorious condition. A body is of a sinful condition; it is known as unrighteous and is without knowledge. The other which is of (i.e. practises) good vows should be known as righteous. The third one intended for enjoyment of religious merit, and suffering (fruit of) impiety is beyond the senses. Thus those who know religious merit say that the body is of three kinds. As there is the enjoyment of the good deeds and there is salvation, it is of three kinds. The body of a sinful condition is called sinful. Now, the body of you who are having devotion to your teacher, who are following my words (of advice), and who are hearing the nature of religious merit, has become of the nature of religious merit. By that only spotless purity, proper for religious rites, has been produced. Due to luck the minds and acts of bodies of men undergo a change from time to time. Now indeed your body moves on to piety. Therefore, I am inviting you to the excellent bath in the month of Vaiśākha.

Yama said:

28b-32. Then that family priest Kaśyapa urged the king to bathe, (give) gifts, worship (Viṣṇu), and perform proper rites, as formerly told in the sacred texts, in the month of Vaiśākha. The sage spoke to the king as told (in the holy texts). He made him hear the essence of (Viṣṇu’s) hymn, and taught him Viṣṇu’s worship, having heard and studied which he would obtain the proper fruit. He made him (a man of) pure devotion. The king also performed (the rites) according to the rules. The performance (of rites) in the month of Vaiśākha is praiseworthy. He listened to it with respect.

33-39. The best king devoutly performed morning bath, (got) water for washing the feet with, (offered) oblations and worshipped Viṣṇu. He also made an offering of eatables (to Viṣṇu). That best brāhmaṇa who gives gifts according to the rules and with respect, and who performs the rite like this, who devoutly, every day and every year does like this, goes to the abode of Viṣṇu. Then in other months he again becomes one sporting with the breasts of beautiful women, and has the only desire of enjoyment, according to his liking. He being under the influence of lust, does not follow the rule of piety nor does he consider the royal affairs, except in the month of Vaiśākha. O best brāhmaṇa, even for the great, this mind-born (one), born with the body, is difficult to resist. The course of desires is beginningless, since the women who are endowed with (beautiful) hair and collyrium, whose touch is bad, who are dear to the eyes, who have flames like those of fire, burn a man like grass (i.e. hay). Carnal desire is an awful enemy duly living in the bodies of men. It is full of the smoke of delusion, is sinful. Whom has he (i.e. it) not blinded?

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