Chapter 5: Attaining Perfection

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Narada Bhakti Sutra 80

sa kirtyamanah sighram evavirbhavaty anubhavayati bhaktan


sah -- He; kirtyamanah -- being glorified; sighram -- quickly; eva -- indeed; avirbhavati -- appears; anubhavayati -- gives realization; bhaktan -- to the devotees.


When He is glorified, the Lord swiftly reveals Himself to His devotees and allows them to know Him as He is.


The Srimad-Bhagavatam describes how Narada attained direct perception of Lord Krishna. After Narada heard about Krishna from sages who were visiting his house, he continued living with his mother, since he was only a five-year-old boy. But his mother suddenly died, and Narada took to wandering. Once, as he sat under a banyan tree and began to meditate upon the Supersoul, the Lord appeared to him. Narada relates, "As soon as I began to meditate upon the lotus feet of the Personality of Godhead with my mind transformed in transcendental love, tears rolled down my eyes and without delay the Personality of Godhead, Sri Krishna, appeared on the lotus of my heart" (Bhag. 1.6.16).

After this initial darsana, the Supreme Lord withdrew Himself in His personal form but spoke to Narada: "O virtuous one, you have only once seen My person, and this is just to increase your desire for Me, because the more you hanker for Me, the more you will be freed from all material desires" (Bhag. 1.6.22). The Supreme Lord further told Narada that he would eventually "become My associate in the transcendental world after giving up the present deplorable material worlds."

And so Narada's life is a personal testimony to his own instruction given in this sutra. Narada went on to become one of the twelve authorities on Krishna consciousness known as maha-janas, and he is the spiritual master of such stalwarts as Prahlada, Dhruva, and Vyasadeva.

Narada once came to Vyasadeva when Vyasa was feeling despondent, even after having compiled most of the Vedic scriptures. Narada quickly diagnosed his disciple's depression and spoke to him:

You have not actually broadcast the sublime and spotless glories of the Personality of Godhead. That philosophy which does not satisfy the transcendental senses of the Lord is considered worthless. Please, therefore, describe the transcendental pastimes of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krishna, more vividly. [Bhag. 1.5.8, 21]

Vyasa took Narada's instructions to heart and began composing the Srimad-Bhagavatam, which is filled with the glories of Lord Krishna in His many incarnations, as well as narrations of the Lord's pure devotees. Vyasadeva later expressed his profound gratitude by glorifying Sri Naradadeva in various verses of the Srimad-Bhagavatam:

aho devarshir dhanyo 'yam yat kirtim sarnga-dhanvanah

gayan madyann idam tantrya ramayaty aturam jagat

"All glory and success to Srila Narada Muni because he glorifies the activities of the Personality of Godhead, and in so doing he himself takes pleasure and also enlightens all the distressed souls of the universe" (Bhag. 1.6.38).

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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, Founder Acarya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness
Satsvarupa dasa Goswami
Gopiparanadhana dasa Adhikari