Bhägavatam is the Crown Jewel of all Revealed Scriptures


dharmaù projjhita-kaitavo 'tra paramo nirmatsaräëäà satäà

vedyaà västavam atra vastu-çivadaà täpa-trayonmülanam

çrémad-bhägavate mahä-muni-kåte kià vä parair éçvaraù

sadyo hådy avarudhyate 'tra kåtibhiù çuçrüñubhis tat-kñaëät

Completely rejecting all religious principles that are materially motivated, Bhägavata-Puräëa propounds the highest truth, which is understandable by those devotees who are fully pure in heart. The highest truth is reality distinguished from illusion for the welfare of all. Such truth uproots the threefold miseries. This beautiful Bhägavatam, compiled by the great sage Vyäsa in the maturity of his spiritual realization, is sufficient in itself for God-realization. What is the need for any other scripture? As soon as one attentively and submissively hears the message of Bhägavatam, by this culture of knowledge, the Supreme Lord is established within his heart.

(Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, 1.1.2)


'kåñëa-bhakti-rasa-svarüpa' çré-bhägavata

täte veda-çästra haite parama mahattva

Çrémad-Bhägavatam gives direct information of the mellows derived from service to Kåñëa. Therefore Çrémad-Bhägavatam is above all other Vedic literature.

(Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya 25.150)


Bhägavatam is the Ripened Fruit of the Vedic Desire Tree


nigama-kalpa-taror galitaà phalaà

çuka-mukhäd amåta-drava-saàyutam

pibata bhägavataà rasam älayaà

muhur aho rasikä bhuvi bhävukäù

Çrémad-Bhägavatam is the essence of all Vedic literature. It is the ripened fruit of the desire tree of Vedic knowledge. It has been sweetened by emanating from the mouth of Çukadeva Gosvämé. O thoughtful men, who relish transcendental mellows, always taste this fully ripened fruit. As long as you are aspiring to be absorbed in the transcendental bliss derived from the Lord's loving service, you should continue tasting Çrémad-Bhägavatam even after liberation.

(Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, 1.1.3)


Bhägavatam is the Literary Incarnation of Kåñëa


kåñëe sva-dhämopagate dharma-jïänädibhiù saha

kalau nañöa-dåçäm eña puräëärko 'dhunoditaù

Çrémad-Bhägavatam is as brilliant as the sun. After Lord Kåñëa has left for His abode, accompanied by dharma and knowledge, it has arisen to save us from the darkness of the age of Kalé.

(Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 1.3.43)


Paramahaàsas Sing Bhägavatam for the Benefit of all Souls


anarthopaçamaà säkñäd

bhakti-yogam adhokñaje

lokasyäjänato vidväàç

cakre sätvata-saàhitäm

yasyäà vai çrüyamäëäyäà

kåñëe parama-püruñe

bhaktir utpadyate puàsaù

çoka-moha-bhayäpahä

The material miseries of the living entity, which are superfluous to him, can be directly mitigated by the linking process of devotional service; but the mass of people do not know this, therefore the great sage Vyäsa compiled this Vedic literature, which is in relation to the Supreme Truth. Simply by hearing this Vedic literature, the feeling for devotional service to Kåñëa sprouts up at once to extinguish the fire of lamentation, illusion, and fearfulness within the heart.

(Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. 1.7.6-7)


Bhägavatam is Dear to the Topmost Paramahaàsas


çrémad-bhägavataà puräëam amalaà yad vaiñëavänäà priyaà

yasmin päramahaàsyam ekam amalaà jïänaà paraà géyate

tatra jïäna-viräga-bhakti-sahitaà naiskarmyam äviñktaà

tac chåëvan sü-paöhan vicäraëa-paro bhaktyä vimucyen naraù

Çrémad-Bhägavatam is the spotless Puräëa. It is especially dear to the Vaiñëavas; it has knowledge that is especially appreciated by the paramahaàsas. When carefully studied, heard, and understood again and again, it opens the door to pure devotion through which one never returns to the bondage of illusion.

(Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. 12.13.18)


Bhägavatam is the Natural Commentary on Vedänta, Mahäbhäräta, Gäyatré, and the Vedas


artho 'yaà brahma-süträëäà bhäratärtha vinirëayaù

gäyatré-bhäñya-rüpo 'sau vedärtha-paribåàhitaù

Çrémad-Bhägavatam explains the meaning of Vedänta and the purpose of Mahäbhäräta. It reveals the inner meaning of the gäyatré mantra and the essence of the Vedas.

(Hari-Bhakti-Viläsa 10.394)


gäyatréra arthe ei grantha-ärambhana

"satyaà paraà" sambhandha, "dhémahi" sädhane prayojana

In the beginning of Çrémad-Bhägavatam is an explanation of the brahma-gäyatré mantra: satyam param dhémahi, "We meditate upon the Absolute Truth." Here dhémahi indicates the execution of devotional service and the attainment of the ultimate goal of life, Çré Kåñëa, who is satyaà paraà, the Supreme Absolute Truth.

(Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya 25.147)


cäri-veda-upaniñade yata kichu haya

tära artha laïä vyäsa karilä saïcaya

yei sutre yei åk viñaya vacana

bhägavate sei åk çloke nibandhana

ataeva brahma-sütrera bhäñya çré bhägavata

bhägavata-çloka, upaniñat kahe 'eka' mata

Vyäsadeva collected whatever conclusions were in the four Vedas and 108 Upaniñads, and composed them in the form of codes as the Vedänta-sütras. In Vedänta-sütra the purpose of all Vedic knowledge is explained, and in Çrémad-Bhägavatam, it is elaborated upon in 18,000 verses. What is explained in Çrémad-Bhägavatam and in the Upaniñads serves the same purpose.

(Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya 25.98-100)


ye sütra-kartä, se yadi karaye vyäkhyäna

tabe sütrera müla artha lokera haya jïäna

If the Vedänta-sütras are explained by their author, Vyäsadeva, their original meaning can be easily understood by the people in general.

(Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya 25.93)


ataeva bhägavata sutrera 'artha'-rüpa

nija-kåta sütrera nija-'bhäñya'-svarüpa

Çrémad-Bhägavatam gives the actual meaning of the Vedänta-sütras. The author of the sütras is Vyäsadeva and he has explained their meaning in the Çrémad-Bhägavatam.

(Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya 25.142)


ataeva bhägavata karaha vicära

ihä haite päbe sütra- çrutira artha-sära

Study Çrémad-Bhägavatam meticulously. Then you will understand the actual meaning of Vedänta-sütra.

(Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya 25.153)


Bhägavatam is the essence of all the scriptures


sarva-vedetihäsänäà

säraà säraà samüddhåtam

The essence of all Vedic literature, the Vedas, Puräëas, and Itihasas, has been collected in the Çrémad-Bhägavatam.

(Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya 25.145)


Bhägavatam Reveals the Inner Meaning of Vedänta


sarva-vedänta-säraà hi çré-bhägavatam iñyate

tad-rasämåta-tåptasya nänyatra syäd ratiù kvacit

Çrémad-Bhägavatam is accepted as the essence of all Vedic literature and Vedantic philosophy. Whoever tastes the transcendental mellow of Çrémad-Bhägavatam is never attracted to any other literature.

(Çrémad-Bhägavatam, 12.13.15)


Bhägavatam is the Cream of the Vedas and the Very Form of Kåñëa


sabe puruñärtha 'bhakti' bhägavate haya

'premarüpa bhägavata' cärivede kaya

cäri veda-dadhi bhagavata

mathilenn çuke-khäilenu parikñita

Çrémad-Bhägavatam speaks of the highest goal of life, devotional service, divine love of Kåñëa. According to all the Vedas Çrémad-Bhägavatam is the very form of divine love. The four Vedas are like yogurt, but the Çrémad-Bhägavatam is like butter. The churner of this butter is Çukadeva Gosvämé, and the eater of this butter is Parékñita Mahäräja.

(Çré Caitanya-bhägavata, Madhya. 22.15-l6)


kåñëa-tulya bhägavata vibhu, sarväçraya

prati-çloke prati-akñare nänä artha kaya

Çrémad-Bhägavatam is as great as Kåñëa Himself, the Supreme Lord and the shelter of everything. In each and every verse and syllable of Çrémad-Bhägavatam, there are multi-faceted meanings, for it is as infinite as Kåñëa.

(Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya 24.318)


bhägavata, tuläsé gaìgäya, bhaktajane

caturdhä vigraha kåñëa ei cäri sane

Wherever Çrémad-Bhägavatam, Tuläsé-devé, the Ganges, and the devotees are found, Kåñëa is always present.

(Çré Caitanya-bhägavata, Madhya 22.81)


Self-Manifest and Eternal, Bhägavatam is not Ordinary Materialistic Literature


ädi-madhya-äntye bhägavate ei kaya

viñëu-bhakti nityasiddha akñaya avyaya

(Çré Caitanya-bhägavata, Antya 3.506)


bhägavata-çästre se bhaktir tattva kahe

teïi bhägavata-sama kona çästra nahe

yena rüpa matsya-kurma-ädi avatära

ävirbhäva-tirobhäva äpanei haya

(Çré Caitanya-bhägavata, Antya 3.509-511)

içvarera tattva yena bujhane na yäya

eimata bhägavata sarva-çäste gäya

(Çré Caitanya-bhägavata. Antya 3.513)


premamaya bhägavata kåñëera çré aìga

tähäte kahena yata gopya kåñëeraìga

(Çré Caitanya-bhägavata, Antya 3.516)


hena bhägavata kona duñkåti paòiyä

nityänanda nindä kare tattva nä jäniyä

(Çré Caitanya-bhägavata, Antya 3.534)


In the beginning, middle, and end, the Çrémad-Bhägavatam speaks only of devotional service to Kåñëa. As such, this literature is eternally perfect, infallible, and infinite, because it contains all truths pertaining to the infinite. Since the Çrémad-Bhägavatam speaks exclusively of the truths of pure devotional service, it is unparalleled among the çästras. No other scripture can compare with Çrémad-Bhägavatam. In the same way that the avatäras of Kåñëa beginning with Matsya and Kürma appear and disappear transcendentally, the Çrémad-Bhägavatam is not of mundane origin. It appears and disappears of its own accord. In the same way that truth about God Himself is inconceivable, the Çrémad-Bhägavatam is beyond all material understanding. The Çrémad-Bhägavatam is full of kåñëa-prema. It is a part of Kåñëa Himself, for it describes Kåñëa's confidential pastimes. Whoever offends the lotus feet of Lord Nityänanda is a great sinner. Despite his deep study and scholarship, such a person will never understand the Çrémad-Bhägavatam.


Bhägavatam is Beyond Sensual Experience


pädau yadéyau prathamadvitéyau tåtéyaturyau kathitau yadurü

näbhistathä païcama eva ñañöho bhüjäntaraà doryugalaà tathänyau

kaëöhas tu räjan navamo yadéyo mukharavindaà daçamäà praphullam

ekädaço yasya laläöapaööakaà çiro'pi tu dvädaça eva bhäti

tamädidevaà karuëänidhänaà tamälavarëaà suhitävatäram

apärasaàsära samudra-setuà bhajämahe bhägavata-svarüpam

I worship that Supreme Lord Çré Kåñëa, the origin of all the gods, the abode of mercy, whose transcendental form is black like the tamal tree, and who has appeared in the form of His sound avatära, Çrémad-Bhägavatam. It is the literary incarnation of Kåñëa, a bridge by which lost souls can cross the ocean of repeated birth and death.

Çrémad-Bhägavatam has twelve cantos, which correspond to the twelve different parts of Kåñëa's divine form. The first two cantos are the lotus feet of Kåñëa. The third and fourth cantos are His lotus thighs. The fifth canto is His lotus navel. The sixth canto is His torso and chest. The seventh and eight cantos are his lotus arms. The ninth canto is his throat. The tenth canto is his beautiful lotus face. The eleventh canto is His forehead, and the twelfth canto is His crown.

(Sri Padma Puräëa)


The Inconceivable Nature of Bhägavatam


mahäcintya bhägavata sarvaçästre gäya

ihä nä bujhiye vidyä, tapa, pratiñöhäya

bhägavata bujhi heno yära äcche jïäna

se nä jäne kabhu bhägavatera pramäëa

According to all the revealed scriptures, the Çrémad-Bhägavatam is inconceivable, beyond mundane understanding. Its meaning cannot be understood either by scholarship or penance. One who is not a devotee of Kåñëa, no matter how great a scholar he may be, will never understand Çrémad-Bhägavatam.

(Çré Caitanya-bhägavata, Madhya 22.13-14)


bhägavate acintya éçvara-buddhi yäora

se jänaye bhägavata-artha bhakti-sära

Çrémad-Bhägavatam has inconceivable knowledge about the Supreme Lord. One who knows this knows the Çrémad-Bhägavatam gives the essence of devotion to Kåñëa.

(Çré Caitanya-bhägavata, Madhya 22.25)

ahaà vedmi çuko vetti

vyäso vetti na vetti vä

bhaktyä bhägavataà grähyaà

na buddhyä na ca öékayä

I know Çukadeva knows the meaning of Çrémad-Bhägavatam, whereas Vyäsadeva may or may not know it. The Çrémad-Bhägavatam can only be known through bhakti, not by mundane intelligence or by reading many commentaries.

(Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya 24.313)


Bhägavatam is Understood Through Vaiñëavas


"yäha, bhägavata paòa vaiñëavera sthäne

ekänta äçraya kara caitanya-caraëe

If you want to understand Çrémad-Bhägavatam you must approach a self-realized Vaiñëava and study it under his guidance while at the same time taking exclusive shelter of the lotus feet of Lord Caitanya.

(Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Antya 5.131)


vaiçëava-päça bhägavata kara adhyayana

[Lord Caitanya said to Raghunätha Bhaööa.] Study Çrémad-Bhägavatam from a pure Vaiñëava who has realized God.

(Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Antya 13.113)


Study Bhägavatam in Light of Previous Acäryas


çrédhara-svämé-prasäde 'bhägavata' jäni

jagad-guru çrédhara-svämé 'guru' kari' mäni

çrédharänugata kara bhägavata-vyäkhyäna

abhimäna chäòi' bhaja kåñëa bhagavän

By the mercy of Çrédhara Svämé, one can understand the meaning of Çrémad-Bhägavatam. For this, reason he is the guru of the whole world, and I consider him my guru. You should explain the Çrémad-Bhägavatam by following the version of Çrédhara Svämé. Giving up all false ego, you should worship Çré Kåñëa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead.

(Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Antya 7.133,136)


Who Does not Recognize Bhägavatam is Doomed


mui, mora bhakta, ära grantha-bhägavate

yära bheda äcche tära näça bhälamate

Myself, My devotees, and the scripture Çrémad-Bhägavatam one who sees any difference between these three will find that all his intelligence has been destroyed.

(Çré Caitanya-bhägavata, Madhya 18)


ye vä bhaööäcärya, cakravarté, miçra saba

tä'rä o nä jäne saba grantha-anubhava

çästra paòäiyä sabe ei karma kare

çrotära sahita yamapäçe òubi' mare

The so-called Bhaööäcäryas, Cakravartés, Miçras, and others make a business out of the scripture, but have no realization at all. All their study of scripture is simply karmic activity. Whoever hears from them will be bound by Yamaräja and dragged down to hell at the time of death.

(Çré Caitanya-bhägavata. Ädi 2.67-68)


bhägavata ye nä mäne, se yavana sama

tära çästä äcche janme janme prabhu yama

Whoever has no regard for Çrémad-Bhägavatam is the same as a yavana, an untouchable heathen. He will be punished birth after birth by Lord Yamaräja.

(Çré Caitanya-bhägavata, Ädi 2.39)


Those Proud Of Their Piety Cannot Relish

The Nectarean Juice Of The Bhägavatam


mauna-vrata-çrüta-tapo-'dhyayana-sva-dharma-vyäkhyä-raho-japa-samädhaya äpavargyäù

präyaù paraà puruña te tv ajitendriyäëäà

värtä bhavasty uta na vätra tu dämbhikänäm

O Lord, there are ten prescribed methods on the way to liberation: silence, vows, hearing of Vedic knowledge, penance, study of Vedic literature's, piety, explaining the çästras, solitude, japa, and samädhé. These are generally a means of livelihood for those who have not conquered their senses. Because they are falsely proud of their religious practices, however, these methods are all unsuccessful.

(Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. 7.9.46)


NOTE: The implication here is that because they are proud of practicing these unsuccessful methods of liberation, so-called religionists (who cannot control their senses) cannot appreciate Çrémad-Bhägavatam, despite performing all manner of pious activities. Çréla Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati comments, "The ten processes of liberation or improvement on the path of liberation are not meant for devotees; kevalyä bhaktyä, if one simply engages in devotional service to the Lord, all ten methods of liberation are automatically observed."

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