Hare Krishna Prabhujis and Matajis,
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudeva.
This is in continuation of the previous offering titled 'Glories of Srimad Bhagavatam'. In the previous offering we saw how after hearing Srimad Bhagavatam Dhundukari was released from his ghostly form and began to glorify Srimad Bhagavatam. Now we shall continue further.
While Dhundukari was glorifying Bhagavatam in this manner, an aerial car came for him along with Vishnudutas. When Dhundukari boarded the aerial car, Gokarna asked the Vishnudhutas a very interesting question. "There are so many sinless souls in this village who attended this Bhagavata Saptah. But how come there is only one aerial car that has come? Why is there a difference in treatment for them? O beloved servants of Sri Hari, can you please explain us the reason for the same?" The Vishnudhutas gave them a beautiful response for this question. In shloka 71 of the fifth chapter of Uttara khanda of Padmapurana the Vishnudutas say
shravanasya vibhedena phalabhedotra samsthitah
shravanam tu krtam sarvaina tatha mananam krtam
phalabhedastato jaato bhajanaadapi maanada
"The difference in treatment is because of the difference in hearing of Srimad Bhagavatam. Though all the people present here, had heard Bhagavatam, the intensity of hearing was not the same for all. That is the reason for the difference in reward, although everyone had heard Srimad Bhagavatam."
This is very important point to meditate. Many a times even after knowing the glories of devotional service, we do it mechanically without faith or care. Such faithlessness and careless attitude will naturally delay our path of progress. Krishna says in Bhagavad Gita verse 4.11, "ye yathaa maam prapadyante / taams tathaiva bhajaamy aham" - "As all surrender unto Me, I reward them accordingly." Dhundukaari although had led a very sinful life in the past and had attained the ghost body, now when he heard that hearing Srimad Bhagavatam is the only hope for him to get rid of his ghostly form, he heard Srimad Bhagavatam for seven days and seven nights continuously with deep concentration. Due to his faith and intense hearing of Srimad Bhagavatam Dhundukari was blessed with opportunity to go to Lord's abode and have His darshan. Srimad Bhagavatam verse 2.8.4, Parikshit Maharaj says
shrnvatah shraddhayaa nityam / grnatash ca sva ceshtitam
kaalena naatidirghena / bhagavaan vishate hrdi
"Persons who hear Srimad-Bhagavatam regularly and are always taking the matter very seriously will have the Personality of Godhead Sri Krishna manifested in their hearts within a short time."
Parikshit Maharaj also heard Bhagavatam for 7 days and could reach the abode of Lord. His Divine Grace very nicely mentions in the above purport that people like Parikshit Maharaj at least knew that they will die after 7 days. But for us death can come any moment. So remembering our last moment, we should endeavour every day to engage in hearing Srimad Bhagavatam attentively and with faith. Then by the mercy of Guru and Krishna, we are sure to reach the abode of Supreme Lord.
Krishna willing we shall try to meditate on further glories of Srimad Bhagavatam in the subsequent offering.
Thank you very much.
Yours in service of Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudeva,
Sudarshana devi dasi.
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