Pradyumna: “Sūta Gosvāmī said: Dispite being instructed in his duty and encouraged to kill the son of Droṇācārya, Arjuna, a great soul, did not like the idea of killing him, although he was a heinous murderer of his family members.”


sūta uvāca
evaṁ parīkṣatā dharmaṁ
pārthaḥ kṛṣṇena coditaḥ
naicchad dhantuṁ guru-sutaṁ
yadyapy ātma-hanaṁ mahān
[SB 1.7.40]

So Kṛṣṇa, as an impartial observer, He advised Arjuna to kill Aśvatthāmā on the ground of so many offenses. He was also trying to see how Arjuna decides. But Arjuna’s decision was very right. Arjuna’s decision was right because, naicchad dhantuṁ guru-sutam. He thought that “Although Aśvatthāmā is criminal, he should be killed. But I am going to kill him on account of my sons’s or our sons’ being killed by him. We are so much aggrieved. So if I kill Aśvatthāmā, then his mother is there. She would be very much unhappy.” For the sake of the spiritual master and teacher… Droṇācārya was dead in the fight, but his wife was living. So Arjuna and Draupadī, considering the grief of the wife of Droṇācārya… There were many instances like that. Not that “The person is criminal,” but “What will be the effect of killing him?” That is to be considered.

I think I have told you one story about Shah Jahan, the emperor of India. A, one great drama writer, Mr. P.L. Raya, he wrote one book by the name, title, Shah Jahan. But the activities of the whole book was the nefarious actions of Aurangzeb. He was killing his brothers, arresting father and so many. So one friend of Mr. Raya asked him that “Your book Shah Jahan, in the activities, the actual hero is Aurangzeb. Why you have named Shah Jahan?” So he replied that although Shah Jahan is silent, but the effect is going to him. When Aurangzeb killed his elder brother, Dara, then the effect was suffered by Shah Jahan. So all the activities, nefarious activities of Aurangzeb, was suffered by Shah Jahan. Therefore he said, “He’s the hero.” Similarly, here is the same instance, that “If I kill Aśvatthāmā—it is right, I should kill him—but the effect would go to his mother. His mother, she is innocent, and in the absence of her husband, our guru, it is our duty to look after her comforts. Now, if I kill Aśvatthāmā, then she will suffer in old age.” Therefore na aicchad dhantuṁ guru-sutam. He did not… Although Kṛṣṇa advised him “You kill him,” he did not like it. Guru-sutam. This is consciousness. Even there is duty, we have to see what will be the effect of the duty. Not everything should be done very blindly. Arjuna… This is devotee. Devotee means he’s not blind. Yasyāsti bhaktir bhagavaty akiñcanā sarvair guṇais tatra samāsate surāḥ [SB 5.18.12]. Bhagavad-bhakta means he will act in such a way that all qualified, nobody can criticize him. That is bhagavad-bhakta. Sarvair guṇais tatra samāsate surāḥ.

We have got many instances. That Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī, he was very rich zamindar’s son, and there was a trouble between the minister of the state and his father and uncle. They were zamindars. They were raising revenues to the extent of twelve lakhs, and the tax was going to the Nawab only four lakhs. So this is the business. So the minister arrested the father and uncle of Raghunātha, and they fled away from home. So the minister arrested Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī. At that time he was not Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī; he was gṛhastha, young man, Raghunātha. So he handled the matter in such a nice way that the matter was settled between the minister and his father. The idea is although he was a Vaiṣṇava, he was not a fool how to manage a state. It does not mean that a Vaiṣṇava will be fool and rascal because he’s Vaiṣṇava. No. Vaiṣṇava, twenty-six qualifications. One of the qualifications is dakṣa: he must be very expert in doing things very nicely. Not that because one is Vaiṣṇava he’ll be callous in the worldly things. No. Therefore I repeatedly request the management that you must be very expert in managing these temple affairs. Everything to the right point. Not a single farthing should be wasted. A Vaiṣṇava must be dakṣa, expert in everything. This is no excuse, that “I have become a devotee. Therefore I am callous to all material things.” What material things? Nirbandhaḥ kṛṣṇa-sambandhe yuktaṁ vairāgyam ucyate. Anything in relationship with Kṛṣṇa, that is not material; that is spiritual. I have several times explained that this temple, don’t think it is ordinary building. It is Vaikuṇṭha. Cintāmaṇi-prakara-sadmasu. Kṛṣṇa has His house, prakara-sadmasu. Cintāmaṇi-prakara-sadmasu. Sadma. Sadma means house. So we should take very, very careful attention that this temple is kept very nicely, managed very nicely. Not that “I have become Vaiṣṇava. Let everything be stolen or spoiled or broken. I have become Vaiṣṇava. I cannot take care. That is not my consideration.”

Because I have several times pressed on this point that everything in relationship with Kṛṣṇa is Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is the advaya-jñāna. Absolute Truth. Kṛṣṇa and His name, His house, His devotees—His everything. Nāma rūpa guṇa līlā parikara vaiśiṣṭa, everything. Caitanya Mahāprabhu says… Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s philosophy, it is said by Viśvanātha Cakravartī, ārādhyo bhagavān vrajeśa-tanaya tad-dhāma vṛndāvanam. Vrajeśa-tanaya, Vrajendra-nandana Hari, Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is very much pleased when He is addressed as Vrajendra-nandana, Yaśodānandana, Pārtha-sārathi. Added with the, with His devotee’s name. Just to establish that He’s not nirviśeṣa. He’s always saviśeṣa. So this addition… Kṛṣṇa is everyone’s father. Ahaṁ bīja-pradaḥ pitā [Bg. 14.4]. Who can be His father? Nobody can become His father. Still, He accepts a father, and He likes that He should be called by His father’s name. Who is that father? His devotee. Vrajendra-nandana Hari. Ārādhyo bhagavān vrajeśa… Bhagavān. He is addressed as Bhagavān. Bhagavān means the Supreme Person, Supreme Being. Who can be His father? Still, it is said, ārādhyo bhagavān vrajeśa-tanayaḥ. Vrajeśa-tanaya. He’s son of Mahārāja Nanda, ārādhyo bhagavān, Yaśomatī-nandana.

So Kṛṣṇa and His father… Although he’s not Kṛṣṇa, he’s nitya-mukta. There are different types of living entities: Nitya-mukta, nitya-baddha, sādhana-siddha, kṛpā-siddha. These things are very nicely discussed in the Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu. Nitya-siddha. This father, mother of Kṛṣṇa, they are nitya-siddhas. Although they are living entities, they are not Bhagavān, not viṣṇu-tattva. Jīva-tattva. But nitya-siddha. Those who are in the spiritual world, they are nitya-siddha. Nitya-mukta. Nitya-mukta means they never come in this material world. Just like Kṛṣṇa is nitya-mukta śuddha. Similarly, the associates of Kṛṣṇa who come with Him… Just like the gopīs or the cowherd boys, and so…, the cows, calves, they are all nitya-siddha, nitya-mukta. They come with Kṛṣṇa. Ānanda-cinmaya-rasa. They are in the spiritual form, ānanda-cinmaya-rasa, enjoying always spiritual bliss in the association of Kṛṣṇa. Ānanda-cinmaya-rasa-pratibhāvitābhiḥ [Bs. 5.37]. Tābhir ya eva nija-rūpatayā kalābhiḥ. That is also expansion of Kṛṣṇa. Just like Brahmā, when he stolen Kṛṣṇa’s friends, cowherd boys, and the cows and calves, Brahmā saw that Kṛṣṇa is playing with the same cowherd boys, cows, calves, and he was astonished. He went, came to test that “It is being advertised that one boy is now born, is there in Vṛndāvana, and He’s being accepted as Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality, my Lord.” So he played some tricks. He stolen away. But the next moment he saw. Next moment means one year. He saw that Kṛṣṇa has expanded Himself in so many living entities. And later on he saw that everyone is Viṣṇu. Everyone is Viṣṇu. Dīpārcir eva hi daśāntaram abhyupetya dīpāyate [Bs. 5.46]. Kṛṣṇa and Kṛṣṇa’s aṁśa. He expands just like candle. One candle is lit up by another candle, another candle. In this way, first, second, third, fourth, fifth, in the hundreds of times. But each candle is as powerful as the first one. Rāmādi-mūrtiṣu kalā-niyamena tiṣṭhan nānāvatāram akarod bhuvaneṣu kintu kṛṣṇaḥ svayaṁ samabhavat paramaḥ pumān yaḥ [Bs. 5.39]. He has got extensive, innumerable expansions. In the Bhāgavata it is said that Kṛṣṇa’s expansion is so great, just like the waves of the ocean, you cannot count. It is not possible. If you sit down on the sea beach and go on counting how many waves, day and night, there is no limit. So Kṛṣṇa’s expansion is unlimited. He’s unlimited, His expansions are unlimited. Advaitam acyutam anādim ananta-rūpam [Bs. 5.33].

So everything belonging to Kṛṣṇa is Kṛṣṇa. This is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Nothing should be neglected. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. Everything should be… Śrī-vigrahārādhana-nitya-nānā-śṛṅgāra-tan-mandira-mārjanādau **. Every corner of this temple should be considered “Here is Kṛṣṇa.” Then Kṛṣṇa conscious. Not that “Only in the temple Kṛṣṇa is there, not in the gate. Let it be open and thief may come and steal.” No. Very, very careful. The idea is that devotee must be expert in understanding things very clearly. Just like Arjuna. Kṛṣṇa is requesting him. Therefore it is said, evaṁ parīkṣatā. Kṛṣṇa is trying to see how Arjuna is Kṛṣṇa conscious. “I am requesting you, ‘Kill him.’ ” And what does he decide? Kṛṣṇa knew everything. Sarvasya cāhaṁ hṛdi sanniviṣṭo mattaḥ smṛtir jñānam apohanaṁ ca [Bg. 15.15]. Kṛṣṇa is situated in everyone’s heart. So what Arjuna was thinking of, Kṛṣṇa knew it that he was thinking rightly not to kill this man. Still, He was parīkṣatā, He was examining how Arjuna decides. So he passed the examination.

So devotee is expected to pass all kinds of examinations. That is devotee. Not one-sided. Therefore śāstra says yasyāsti bhaktir bhagavaty akiñcanā [SB 5.18.12]. Akiñcana-bhakti. Kiñcana. Kiñcana means “something.” So akiñcana means “no something.” That is akiñcana. “I have nothing to do except Kṛṣṇa’s service.” That is called akiñcana. He has no other duty. Only duty is how to please Kṛṣṇa. That is śuddha-bhakti. Anyābhilāṣitā-śūnyaṁ jñāna-karmādy-anāvṛtam [Brs. 1.1.11]. So long you’re on the platform of jñāna or karma… There are different stages. Karma is the lowest stage, and jñāna is higher. Koṭi-karma-niṣṭha-madhye eka jñānī śreṣṭha. Caitanya Mahāprabhu has said, out of many millions of karmīs, one jñānī is good, śreṣṭha. And out of millions of jñānīs… Simply jñāna, theoretical knowledge, is not good. It must be practical. Jñāna, the result of jñāna is to become liberated, mukti. Simply I am very jñānī and I am doing all nonsense, this is not jñāna. He must be liberated from material attachment. Brahma-bhūtaḥ prasannātmā [Bg. 18.54]. This is the stage of perfection of jñāna. Na śocati na kāṅkṣati. He has nothing to do with the material world. That is jñānī. Therefore the karmīs, they are very much attached to the material activities, and jñānī is not attached—not attached neither interested. That is real jñānī. Therefore Caitanya Mahāprabhu said koṭi-karma-niṣṭha-madhye eka jñānī śreṣṭha. Out of millions of karmīs, one jñānī is śreṣṭha. We sometimes differ with the Māyāvādī philosophers. But they are jñānīs. They are better than the karmīs. There is no doubt. Koṭi-karma-niṣṭha-madhye eka jñānī śreṣṭha.

But it does not mean because one has got some theoretical knowledge, therefore he is mukta. That is another stage. Therefore Caitanya Mahāprabhu said, koṭi-jñānī-madhye haya eka mukta śreṣṭha. And so far bhakta, koṭi-mukta-madhye durlabha eka kṛṣṇa-bhakta. Sa mahātmā sudurlabhaḥ. That is another thing. Koṭi-mukta-madhye. Koṭisyapi mahā-mune(?). So to become Kṛṣṇa conscious, fully devoted, anyābhilāṣitā-śūnyam [Brs. 1.1.11], it is very, very difficult, the highest position. Bahūnāṁ janmanām ante jñānavān [Bg. 7.19]. The jñāna, after jñāna, there is the stage of bhakti. Without jñāna, bhakti is kaniṣṭha-adhikārī. With jñāna he is uttama-adhikārī. These are described by Caitanya, in the Caitanya-caritāmṛta. So the idea is that if one is advanced devotee, then all the good qualities will be visible in him. Yasyāsti bhaktir bhagavaty akiñcanā [SB 5.18.12]. He has no other desire. Akiñcana-bhakti. If he has got any other desire to fulfill, then it is mixed. It is not śuddha-bhakti; it is vaidhī-bhakti. Karma-miśra-bhakti, jñāna-miśra-bhakti, yoga-miśra-bhakti. Bhakti must be there. Otherwise, karma, jñāna, yoga, nothing is successful. Bhakti must be there. But when karma, jñāna, yoga, everything is without contamination, simply bhakti… Jñāna-karmādy-anāvṛtam [Cc. Madhya 19.167]. That stage is ānukūlyena kṛṣṇānuśīlanam. Simply to satisfy.

Now here Kṛṣṇa is advising. So ānukūlyena kṛṣṇānuśīlanam. There is a… Parīkṣatā, as Kṛṣṇa is examining, similarly, Arjuna also very intelligently acting. He knew that although Kṛṣṇa was encouraging him to kill Aśvatthāmā, “He wanted to see me, how I deal with the matter.” This is also… So there is competition between bhaktas. Duye lagye hura huri(?). It is stated in the Caitanya-caritāmṛta, between Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa is being enlivened by seeing Rādhārāṇī, and Rādhārāṇī is becoming more beautiful by seeing Kṛṣṇa. Duye lagye hura huri. The competition. This is described in the fourth chapter of Caitanya-caritāmṛta. So it is transcendental sporting between the devotee and the Lord. It is not nirviśeṣa-vāda. The Lord wants to see “How he is My pure devotee.” And the devotee wants to see that “I’ll not accept anything from Kṛṣṇa. I shall sacrifice everything for Kṛṣṇa.” That is duye lagye hura huri. That is devotee, and that is Kṛṣṇa.

So here is Arjuna. He’s being examined by Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa wants to examine His devotees, how staunch devotee he is. Just like the Pāṇḍavas. They were put into so many troubles. They lost their kingdom, they lost their wife-insulted. The wife was endeavored to become naked. Never…, the Pāṇḍavas never said that “Kṛṣṇa, You are our friend. Why we are suffering so many troubles?” Never. Never. This is pure devotee. Kṛṣṇa is always with him. Kṛṣṇa could do anything, but still they never requested. Neither Kuntī nor Pāṇḍavas. This is pure devotion. A pure devotee will never try to take anything from Kṛṣṇa. He will try to give everything to Kṛṣṇa. So duye lagye hura huri. So here is a trial between the devotee and Lord Kṛṣṇa, and Arjuna has passed the examination. Therefore it is said, evaṁ parīkṣatā dharmaṁ pārthaḥ kṛṣṇena coditaḥ. He’s being examined by kṛṣṇena, not ordinary person. But he passed the examination. Why? Naicchad dhantuṁ guru-sutam. In spite of Kṛṣṇa’s, I mean to say, injection, that “Do it,” he did not like to. Naicchad dhantuṁ guru-sutaṁ yadyapy ātma-hanaṁ mahān. Although he is the greatest criminal.

Thank you very much. (end)