Smart Quote of the Day, October 9, 2020

“Anyone completely aware of the science of Krishna, regardless of his status in life, is a guru.”

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This is from the Srimad-Bhagavatam 8.19.2

[This chapter of the Srimad-Bhagavatam is entitled, “Lord Vamanadeva Begs Charity from Bali Maharaja.” This chapter describes how Lord Vamanadeva [Krishna, disguised as a dwarf] asked for three paces of land in charity, how Bali Maharaja agreed to His proposal, and how Sukracarya forbade Bali Maharaja to fulfill Lord Vamanadeva’s request.]

TRANSLATION

The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: O King, you are indeed exalted because your present advisors are the brahmanas who are descendants of Bhrgu and because your instructor for your future life is your grandfather, the peaceful and venerable Prahlada Maharaja. Your statements are very true, and they completely agree with religious etiquette. They are in keeping with the behavior of your family, and they enhance your reputation.

PURPORT:

Prahlada Maharaja is a vivid example of a pure devotee. Someone might argue that since Prahlada Maharaja, even though very old, was attached to his family, and specifically to his grandson Bali Maharaja, how could he be an ideal example?

Therefore this verse uses the word prasantah. A devotee is always sober. He is never disturbed by any conditions. Even if a devotee remains in grhastha life and does not renounce material possessions, he should still be understood to be prasanta, sober, because of his pure devotion to the Lord. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu therefore said:

“Whether one is a brahmana [priest], a sannyasi [renunciant] or a sudra [laborer]— regardless of what he is — he can become a spiritual master if he knows the science of Krishna.” (Cc. Madhya 8.128) Anyone completely aware of the science of Krishna, regardless of his status in life, is a guru. Thus Prahlada Maharaja is a guru in all circumstances.

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