Shrimad Bhagavatam and Advaita Bhakti — 1 The first Canto of the Bhagavatam is an account of how the work came to be composed. The Rishis that go by the name of Saunaka and others request the famous sage Suta Pauranika to tell them what he heard at the seven-day recital of Maharishi Shuka to King Parikshit and to a large audience on the banks of the Ganges. Suta is famous for his capabilites of remembering verbatim what he hears. So Suta retells the recital of Bhagavatam from his memory to all the Rishis, when they are gathered in Naimisaranya on the banks of Ghantaki river. They are gathered there in preparation for the oncoming Kaliyuga and to find the best way of spending the bad times of the Kaliyuga.
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Shrimad Bhagavatam and Advaita Bhakti — 1 The first Canto of the Bhagavatam is an account of how the work came to be composed. The Rishis that go by the name of Saunaka and others request the famous sage Suta Pauranika to tell them what he heard at the seven-day recital of Maharishi Shuka to King Parikshit and to a large audience on the banks of the Ganges.
Suta is famous for his capabilites of remembering verbatim what he hears. So Suta retells the recital of Bhagavatam from his memory to all the Rishis, when they are gathered in Naimisaranya on the banks of Ghantaki river.
They are gathered there in preparation for the oncoming Kaliyuga and to find the best way of spending the bad times of the Kaliyuga. The very first shloka propitiates the Absolute Truth on the lines of the Gayatri. It is Self-illuminating. Even great sages fail to see it in its Fullness.
All this universe that appears as earth, water and fire is only the appearance of The Absolute. It is That which by its own Effulgence shines without blemish in everything and everywhere. That is itself a great nidhidhyasana exercise, for it contains all the Vedanta that the Upanishads want to convey to you. For more on this. What is known here is the immutable and most auspicious entity that uproots all three kinds of sorrows. What else is the need? It reminds us of Gita shloka IX — 30 and of Soundarya-lahari shloka On behalf of the Rishis assembled, Saunaka asks Suta Pauranika to tell them the stories about Lord Krishna and other avatars of the Lord as he heard from Shuka Maharishi.
And the story of the Bhagavatam begins here. Before beginning the story he recites a few shlokas in praise of Lord Krishna and the merits that accrue by recitation of His names and listening to stories of His exploits.
Very soon Narada himself divines the problem of Vyasa. And he puts it in very powerful words. The eloquence with which this point is emphasized by Narada should be enjoyed in the original words themselves. There is an implicit exhortation here to avoid reading books containing stories of sex, violence, hatred, murder, etc.
Only that literature is worthwhile, says Narada, which is replete with the transcendental glories of the name, fame and miracles of the Infinite Supreme Lord.
Even if that literature is imperfectly composed, goes on Narada, it will be heard, sung and accepted by honest people all over the world I — 5 — According to Narada, Vyasa, in his several PurANas, did not emphasize this aspect sufficiently and that was why Vyasa, even after writing so many scriptural texts, felt dissatisfied, unfulfilled, almost desolate. And Narada gives his own story. He as a boy served them well by doing errands for them. They were so satisfied with him that when they left, they blessed him with the supreme knowledge about the Lord.
The boy had no aims in life except to keep thinking about what the devotees had told him and taught him. So he kept repeating the name of God, that they had taught him, for the rest of his life. He just went wherever his feet would take him, ate whatever anybody offered him. Once while sitting at the foot of a tree in a lonely forest on the banks of a river he had the vision of God.
And when it finally came, that was the pralaya deluge of the last kalpa. When he emerged out of the Lord at the beginning of this kalpa, it was as the mAnasika-putra son born of the mind of Creator Brahma.
By a little but dedicated service to the devotees of God he has reached this eminent status of being always in proximity to the Lord. It was after this prompting that Vyasa wrote the Bhagavatam. After the compilation he taught it to his son Shuka. But Shuka himself was already a realized sage.
Shuka was not interested in any mundane pursuit. So he started to leave for sannyasa. He was in brahman, and of brahman all the time. They have no attachment to anything. Their devotion cannot be explained, because there is no reason why they should have to pray, worship or propitiate the Lord. He begins with the events that followed the finish of the Mahabharata War. Without any respect for law or dharma, he killed the five sons of Draupadi while they were asleep on the night of the last day of war, thereby hoping to wipe out all male heirs of the Pandava dynasty.
Not only that. He released an astra which was programmed by his mantras to kill the child of Abhimanyu growing in the womb of UttarA, the wife of Abhimanyu. Lord Krishna was on the point of departing for his home in Dwaraka. And of course the Lord gave her refuge and miraculously saved the child in the womb by causing his Sudarsana chakra to intervene.
In fact by his mAya-shakti He protected the child in the womb by forming a cordon round the womb, thus also causing a vision for the child to see His Divine Form. The child was saved and the entire Pandava camp was naturally greatly relieved. Incidentally it is this child which is going to be born as Parikshit. And it is to the great King Parikshit that Shuka-brahmam is later going to relate the Bhagavatam in seven days on the banks of the Ganges.
More than anybody else it was Kunti, the mother of the Pandavas, who was most affected by the impending danger of the Pandava vamsa being extinguished and who was most pleased that the danger has been averted by the Compassionate Lord. She could not contain herself. She pours out a moving prayer of thankfulness to the Lord. This is known as Kunti-stuti. It has 25 shlokas. You are beyond the range of sense perception. You are the immutable entity covered by the curtain of delusion mAyA.
You are therefore invisible to the foolish observer, just as an actor is not recognised only as the player in the play and not by his true name and form I Oh Lord, You have saved us from innumerable calamities.
How I wish that all those calamities would happen again and again so that we could see You repeatedly, for seeing You means that we will no longer see repeated births and deaths I And You showed an appearance as if you were afraid, though fear itself is afraid of You.
This sight is bewildering to me. Bhishma is now ready to shed off his mortal coil. He is infinitely happy to have Lord Krishna right at his bedside at the time of his death. Krishna prompts Yudhishtira to ask Bhishma all his questions on Dharma and thus ensues the massive conversation between Yudhishtira and the fallen Veteran about every question on ethics, morals, individual and collective, social and political, of men and women. The Mahabharata goes through all of that in thousands of shlokas.
The well-known sahasranAma of Vishnu occurs here. Each of them was given by satva-dominated persons. But the person to whom they were addressed was differently oriented in the three cases. That the Bhagavad Gita is full of Vedanta, everybody knows.
But the other two are equally of great Vedantic significance. That is why Sankaracharya chose to write Bhashyas for the other two also, in addition to his Bhashya of the Gita.
And these are the only three texts from the Mahabharata to which he has written Bhashyas. You have been treating him as your maternal cousin, your very dear friend, well-wisher, counselor, messenger, benefactor. But He is the Supreme Personality Himself. He is equanimous in his love of every one. He is a sama-dRRishI, that is, He sees every one and everything in the same way.
This Bhishma-stuti is one of several gems from the Bhagavatam. Here is a selection from Bhishma stuti. It refers to a particular scene from the Great War of the Mahabharata. Duryodhana had been complaining that Bhishma was not doing his best all along. Bhishma promised to him now that the very next day he will fight so ferociously that the whole Pandava army would be in shambles and Krishna Himself would take up arms, in spite of his assurance to both sides earlier that He would never take up arms Himself.
And that day the fight that Bhishma put up did shake up the whole Pandava army. And Arjuna himself was at the receiving end. Lord Krishna could no longer bear it. He jumped from the chariot from his seat of the driver, took up His Sudarsana Disc and with the angavastram upper cloth falling behind Him, He was attempting to dash towards Bhishma to attack him and kill him.
And Bhishma was only too ready to welcome Him so that He could die at the hands of the Divine. Right now it was that scene Bhishma was recalling. He says: Oh Lord! You were prepared to throw away your own pratijnA promise in order to make me carry out my promise. That itself was a great blessing. Another shloka I — 9 42 in Bhishma-stuti is in a philosophic mood, befitting the character of Bhishma and the context of his leaving the body.
This shloka is one such. The analogy of the seeing eyes is perfect. Just as each person has an individualised vision of the Sun in his own eyes, so also in each heart He resides as if He is an individualised person.
The analogy brings out this subtle, but important, fact that He who resides in me is not different from Him who resides in the other person.
It is always refreshing to read Queen Kunti prayers. Otto Harrassowitz, Wiesbaden Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: I may be doing something at these places: You have no specific object of favor, nor do You sansmrit any object of envy. This sight is bewildering to me. Important Slokas from the Brahma-samhita click on image. Saving us in the past from poison, a great fire, man-eaters, a vicious assembly, sufferings from exile in the forest and against weapons in battles with great generals, You have now fully protected us against the weapon of the son of Drona. Kunti Stuti Part 2 — Anand — S. In addition, each word can be clicked to find its occurence elsewhere in the entire book, like auto-built concordance with expanded links.
Srimad Bhagavatam – Kunti Stuti – Anand
Vikinos See for example, http: Find these also linked from http: Undoubtedly You are unborn, yet You take Your birth for their welfare and to kill those who are envious of the demigods. In addition, each word can be clicked to find its occurence elsewhere in the entire book, like auto-built concordance with expanded links. Email required Address never made public. Blog Stats 1, hits. The Hindi translation puranas are available for download at http: Raja-Vidya the King of Knowledge click on image. It has a sanwkrit list of Mahapuranas: You Yourself descend to propagate the transcendental science of devotional service unto the hearts of the advanced transcendentalists and mental speculators, who are purified by being able to discriminate between matter ssanskrit spirit. I wish that all those calamities would happen again and again so that we could see You again and again, for seeing You means that we will no longer see repeated births and deaths.