Śrīmad Bhāgavatam|Canto 11 Chapter 8
The Story of Piṅgalā
sukham aindriyakaṁ rājan
svarge naraka eva ca
dehināṁ yad yathā duḥkhaṁ
tasmān neccheta tad-budhaḥ
śrī-brāhmaṇaḥ uvāca — the saintly brāhmaṇa said; sukham — happiness; aindriyakam — generated from the material senses; rājan — O King; svarge — in material heaven; narake — in hell; eva — certainly; ca — also; dehinām — of the embodied living beings; yat — since; yathā — just as; duḥkham — unhappiness; tasmāt — therefore; na — not; iccheta — should desire; tat — that; budhaḥ — one who knows.
The saintly brāhmaṇa said: O King, the embodied living entity automatically experiences unhappiness in heaven or hell. Similarly, happiness will also be experienced, even without one’s seeking it. Therefore a person of intelligent discrimination does not make any endeavor to obtain such material happiness.
grāsaṁ su-mṛṣṭaṁ virasaṁ
mahāntaṁ stokam eva vā
grased ājagaro ’kriyaḥ
grāsam — food; su-mṛṣṭam — clean and delicious; virasam — tasteless; mahāntam — a large quantity; stokam — a small quantity; eva — certainly; vā — either; yadṛcchayā — without personal endeavor; eva — indeed; āpatitam — obtained; graset — one should eat; ājagaraḥ — like the python; akriyaḥ — remaining neutral without endeavor.
Following the example of the python, one should give up material endeavors and accept for one’s maintenance food that comes of its own accord, whether such food be delicious or tasteless, ample or meager.
yadi nopanayed grāso
mahāhir iva diṣṭa-bhuk
śayīta — he should remain peacefully; ahāni — days; bhūrīṇi — for many; nirāhāraḥ — fasting; anupakramaḥ — without endeavor; yadi — if; na upanayet — does not come; grāsaḥ — food; mahā-ahiḥ — the great python; iva — like; diṣṭa — whatever is provided by providence; bhuk — eating.
If at any time food does not come, then a saintly person should fast for many days without making endeavor. He should understand that by God’s arrangement he must fast. Thus, following the example of the python, he should remain peaceful and patient.
bibhrad deham akarmakam
śayāno vīta-nidraś ca
ojaḥ — sensual strength; sahaḥ — mental strength; bala — physical strength; yutam — endowed with; bibhrat — maintaining; deham — the body; akarmakam — without endeavor; śayānaḥ — remaining peacefully; vīta — freed; nidraḥ — from nescience; ca — and; na — not; īheta — should endeavor; indriya-vān — possessing full bodily, mental and sensual strength; api — even though.
A saintly person should remain peaceful and materially inactive, maintaining his body without much endeavor. Even though possessed of full sensual, mental and physical strength, a saintly person should not become active for material gain but rather should always remain alert to his actual self-interest.
ananta-pāro hy akṣobhyaḥ
muniḥ — a saintly sage; prasanna — pleasing; gambhīraḥ — very grave; durvigāhyaḥ — unfathomable; duratyayaḥ — unsurpassable; ananta-pāraḥ — unlimited; hi — certainly; akṣobhyaḥ — not to be disturbed; stimita — calm; udaḥ — water; iva — like; arṇavaḥ — the ocean.
A saintly sage is happy and pleasing in his external behavior, whereas internally he is most grave and thoughtful. Because his knowledge is immeasurable and unlimited he is never disturbed, and thus in all respects he is like the tranquil waters of the unfathomable and unsurpassable ocean.
samṛddha-kāmo hīno vā
notsarpeta na śuṣyeta
saridbhir iva sāgaraḥ
samṛddha — flourishing; kāmaḥ — material opulence; hīnaḥ — destitute; vā — or; nārāyaṇa — the Supreme Personality of Godhead; paraḥ — accepting as supreme; muniḥ — a saintly devotee; na — does not; utsarpeta — swell up; na — does not; śuṣyeta — dry up; saridbhiḥ — by the rivers; iva — like; sāgaraḥ — the ocean.
During the rainy season the swollen rivers rush into the ocean, and during the dry summer the rivers, now shallow, severely reduce their supply of water; yet the ocean does not swell up during the rainy season, nor does it dry up in the hot summer. In the same way, a saintly devotee who has accepted the Supreme Personality of Godhead as the goal of his life sometimes will receive by providence great material opulence, and sometimes he will find himself materially destitute. However, such a devotee of the Lord does not rejoice in a flourishing condition, nor is he morose when poverty-stricken.
dṛṣṭvā striyaṁ deva-māyāṁ
pralobhitaḥ pataty andhe
tamasy agnau pataṅga-vat
dṛṣṭvā — seeing; striyam — a woman; deva-māyām — whose form is created by the illusory energy of the Lord; tat-bhāvaiḥ — by the alluring seductive activities of the woman; ajita — one who has not controlled; indriyaḥ — his senses; pralobhitaḥ — enticed; patati — falls down; andhe — into the blindness of ignorance; tamasi — into the darkness of hell; agnau — in the fire; pataṅga-vat — just like the moth.
One who has failed to control his senses immediately feels attraction upon seeing a woman’s form, which is created by the illusory energy of the Supreme Lord. Indeed, when the woman speaks with enticing words, smiles coquettishly and moves her body sensuously, his mind is immediately captured, and thus he falls blindly into the darkness of material existence, just as the moth maddened by the fire rushes blindly into its flames.
dravyeṣu māyā-raciteṣu mūḍhaḥ
pralobhitātmā hy upabhoga-buddhyā
pataṅga-van naśyati naṣṭa-dṛṣṭiḥ
yoṣit — of women; hiraṇya — golden; ābharaṇa — ornaments; ambara — clothing; ādi — and so on; dravyeṣu — upon seeing such things; māyā — by the illusory energy of the Lord; raciteṣu — manufactured; mūḍhaḥ — a fool with no discrimination; pralobhita — aroused by lusty desires; ātmā — such a person; hi — certainly; upabhoga — for sense gratification; buddhyā — with the desire; pataṅga-vat — like the moth; naśyati — is destroyed; naṣṭa — is ruined; dṛṣṭiḥ — whose intelligence.
A foolish person with no intelligent discrimination is immediately aroused at the sight of a lusty woman beautifully decorated with golden ornaments, fine clothing and other cosmetic features. Being eager for sense gratification, such a fool loses all intelligence and is destroyed just like the moth who rushes into the blazing fire.
stokaṁ stokaṁ grased grāsaṁ
deho varteta yāvatā
gṛhān ahiṁsann ātiṣṭhed
vṛttiṁ mādhukarīṁ muniḥ
stokam stokam — always, a little bit; graset — one should eat; grāsam — food; dehaḥ — the material body; varteta — that it may live; yāvatā — with that much; gṛhān — the householders; ahiṁsan — not harassing; ātiṣṭhet — one should practice; vṛttim — the occupation; mādhu-karīm — of the honeybee; muniḥ — a saintly person.
A saintly person should accept only enough food to keep his body and soul together. He should go from door to door accepting just a little bit of food from each family. Thus he should practice the occupation of the honeybee.
aṇubhyaś ca mahadbhyaś ca
śāstrebhyaḥ kuśalo naraḥ
sarvataḥ sāram ādadyāt
puṣpebhya iva ṣaṭpadaḥ
aṇubhyaḥ — from the smallest; ca — and; mahadbhyaḥ — from the greatest; ca — also; śāstrebhyaḥ — from religious scriptures; kuśalaḥ — intelligent; naraḥ — a man; sarvataḥ — from all; sāram — the essence; ādadyāt — should take; puṣpebhyaḥ — from the flowers; iva — like; ṣaṭpadaḥ — the honeybee.
Just as the honeybee takes nectar from all flowers, big and small, an intelligent human being should take the essence from all religious scriptures.
sāyantanaṁ śvastanaṁ vā
na saṅgṛhṇīta bhikṣitam
makṣikeva na saṅgrahī
sāyantanam — meant for the night; śvastanam — meant for tomorrow; vā — either; na — not; saṅgṛhṇīta — should accept; bhikṣitam — food in charity; pāṇi — with the hand; pātra — as one’s plate; udara — with the belly; amatraḥ — as the storage container; makṣikā — the bee; iva — like; na — not; saṅgrahī — a collector.
A saintly person should not think, “This food I will keep to eat tonight and this other food I can save for tomorrow.” In other words, a saintly person should not store foodstuffs acquired by begging. Rather, he should use his own hands as his plate and eat whatever fits on them. His only storage container should be his belly, and whatever conveniently fits into his belly should be his stock of food. Thus one should not imitate the greedy honeybee who eagerly collects more and more honey.
sāyantanaṁ śvastanaṁ vā
na saṅgṛhṇīta bhikṣukaḥ
makṣikā iva saṅgṛhṇan
saha tena vinaśyati
sāyantanam — meant for the night; śvastanam — meant for tomorrow; vā — either; na — not; saṅgṛhṇīta — should accept; bhikṣukaḥ — a saintly mendicant; makṣikā — honeybee; iva — like; saṅgṛhṇan — collecting; saha — with; tena — that collection; vinaśyati — is destroyed.
A saintly mendicant should not even collect foodstuffs to eat later in the same day or the next day. If he disregards this injunction and like the honeybee collects more and more delicious foodstuffs, that which he has collected will indeed ruin him.
padāpi yuvatīṁ bhikṣur
na spṛśed dāravīm api
spṛśan karīva badhyeta
padā — with the foot; api — even; yuvatīm — a young girl; bhikṣuḥ — a saintly mendicant; na — not; spṛśet — should touch; dāravīm — made of wood; api — even; spṛśan — touching; karī — the elephant; iva — like; badhyeta — becomes captured; kariṇyāḥ — of the she-elephant; aṅga-saṅgataḥ — by contact with the body.
A saintly person should never touch a young girl. In fact, he should not even let his foot touch a wooden doll in the shape of a woman. By bodily contact with a woman he will surely be captured by illusion, just as the elephant is captured by the she-elephant due to his desire to touch her body.
nādhigacchet striyaṁ prājñaḥ
karhicin mṛtyum ātmanaḥ
balādhikaiḥ sa hanyeta
gajair anyair gajo yathā
na adhigacchet — he should not approach to enjoy; striyam — a woman; prājñaḥ — one who can intelligently discriminate; karhicit — at any time; mṛtyum — death personified; ātmanaḥ — for oneself; bala — in strength; adhikaiḥ — by those who are superior; saḥ — he; hanyeta — will be destroyed; gajaiḥ — by elephants; anyaiḥ — by others; gajaḥ — an elephant; yathā — just as.
A man possessing intelligent discrimination should not under any circumstances try to exploit the beautiful form of a woman for his sense gratification. Just as an elephant trying to enjoy a she-elephant is killed by other bull elephants also enjoying her company, one trying to enjoy a lady’s company can at any moment be killed by her other lovers who are stronger than he.
na deyaṁ nopabhogyaṁ ca
lubdhair yad duḥkha-sañcitam
bhuṅkte tad api tac cānyo
na — not; deyam — to be given in charity to others; na — not; upabhogyam — to be enjoyed personally; ca — also; lubdhaiḥ — by those who are greedy; yat — that which; duḥkha — with great struggle and pain; sañcitam — is accumulated; bhuṅkte — he enjoys; tat — that; api — nevertheless; tat — that; ca — also; anyaḥ — someone else; madhu-hā — the one who steals the honey from the beehive; iva — like; artha — wealth; vit — one who knows how to recognize; madhu — the honey.
A greedy person accumulates a large quantity of money with great struggle and pain, but the person who has struggled so much to acquire this wealth is not always allowed to enjoy it himself or give it in charity to others. The greedy man is like the bee who struggles to produce a large quantity of honey, which is then stolen by a man who will enjoy it personally or sell it to others. No matter how carefully one hides his hard-earned wealth or tries to protect it, there are those who are expert in detecting the whereabouts of valuable things, and they will steal it.
yatir vai gṛha-medhinām
su-duḥkha — with great struggle; upārjitaiḥ — that which is acquired; vittaiḥ — material opulence; āśāsānām — of those fervently desiring; gṛha — related to domestic enjoyment; āśiṣaḥ — blessings; madhu-hā — the person who steals honey from the bees; iva — like; agrataḥ — first, before others; bhuṅkte — enjoys; yatiḥ — a saintly mendicant; vai — certainly; gṛha-medhinām — of those dedicated to material family life.
Just as a hunter takes away the honey laboriously produced by the honeybees, similarly, saintly mendicants such as brahmacārīs and sannyāsīs are entitled to enjoy the property painstakingly accumulated by householders dedicated to family enjoyment.
grāmya-gītaṁ na śṛṇuyād
yatir vana-caraḥ kvacit
śikṣeta hariṇād baddhān
grāmya — relating to sense gratification; gītam — songs; na — not; śṛṇuyāt — he should hear; yatiḥ — a saintly mendicant; vana — in the forest; caraḥ — moving; kvacit — ever; śikṣeta — one should learn; hariṇāt — from the deer; baddhāt — bound up; mṛgayoḥ — of the hunter; gīta — by the song; mohitāt — bewildered.
A saintly person dwelling in the forest in the renounced order of life should never listen to songs or music promoting material enjoyment. Rather, a saintly person should carefully study the example of the deer, who is bewildered by the sweet music of the hunter’s horn and is thus captured and killed.
juṣan grāmyāṇi yoṣitām
āsāṁ krīḍanako vaśya
nṛtya — dancing; vāditra — musical performance; gītāni — songs; juṣan — cultivating; grāmyāni — related to sense gratification; yoṣitām — of women; āsām — of them; krīḍanakaḥ — a plaything; vaśyaḥ — fully controlled; ṛṣya-śṛṅgaḥ — the sage Ṛṣyaśṛṅga; mṛgī-sutaḥ — the son of a deer.
Becoming attracted to the worldly singing, dancing and musical entertainment of beautiful women, even the great sage Ṛṣyaśṛṅga, the son of a deer, fell totally under their control, just like a pet animal.
mṛtyum ṛcchaty asad-buddhir
mīnas tu baḍiśair yathā
jihvayā — by the tongue; ati-pramāthinyā — which is extremely disturbing; janaḥ — a person; rasa-vimohitaḥ — bewildered by attraction to taste; mṛtyum — death; ṛcchati — achieves; asat — useless; buddhiḥ — whose intelligence; mīnaḥ — the fish; tu — indeed; baḍiśaiḥ — by the hooks; yathā — just as.
Just as a fish, incited by the desire to enjoy his tongue, is fatally trapped on the fisherman’s hook, similarly, a foolish person is bewildered by the extremely disturbing urges of the tongue and thus is ruined.
indriyāṇi jayanty āśu
varjayitvā tu rasanaṁ
tan nirannasya vardhate
indriyāṇi — the material senses; jayanti — they conquer; āśu — quickly; nirāhārāḥ — those who restrain the senses from their objects; manīṣiṇaḥ — the learned; varjayitvā — except for; tu — however; rasanam — the tongue; tat — its desire; nirannasya — for one who is fasting; vardhate — increases.
By fasting, learned men quickly bring all of the senses except the tongue under control, because by abstaining from eating such men are afflicted with an increased desire to gratify the sense of taste.
tāvaj jitendriyo na syād
na jayed rasanaṁ yāvaj
jitaṁ sarvaṁ jite rase
tāvat — still; jita-indriyaḥ — one who has conquered the senses; na — not; syāt — can be; vijita-anya-indriyaḥ — one who has conquered all of the other senses; pumān — a human being; na jayet — cannot conquer; rasanam — the tongue; yāvat — as long as; jitam — conquered; sarvam — everything; jite — when conquered; rase — the tongue.
Although one may conquer all of the other senses, as long as the tongue is not conquered it cannot be said that one has controlled his senses. However, if one is able to control the tongue, then one is understood to be in full control of all the senses.
piṅgalā nāma veśyāsīd
tasyā me śikṣitaṁ kiñcin
piṅgalā nāma — of the name Piṅgalā; veśyā — a prostitute; āsīt — there was; videha-nagare — in the city named Videha; purā — in the past; tasyāḥ — from her; me — by me; śikṣitaṁ — what was learned; kiñcit — something; nibodha — now you learn; nṛpa-nandana — O son of kings.
O son of kings, previously in the city of Videha there dwelled a prostitute named Piṅgalā. Now please hear what I have learned from that lady.
sā svairiṇy ekadā kāntaṁ
abhūt kāle bahir dvāre
bibhratī rūpam uttamam
sā — she; svairiṇī — the prostitute; ekadā — once; kāntam — a paying lover or a customer; saṅkete — into her house of sex; upaneṣyatī — to bring; abhūt — she stood; kāle — at night; bahiḥ — outside; dvāre — in the doorway; bibhratī — holding up; rūpam — her form; uttamam — most beautiful.
Once that prostitute, desiring to bring a lover into her house, stood outside in the doorway at night showing her beautiful form.
mārga āgacchato vīkṣya
tān śulka-dān vittavataḥ
kāntān mene ’rtha-kāmukī
mārge — in that street; āgacchataḥ — those who were coming; vīkṣya — seeing; puruṣān — men; puruṣa-ṛṣabha — O best among men; tān — them; śulka-dān — who could pay the price; vitta-vataḥ — possessing money; kāntān — lovers or customers; mene — she considered; artha-kāmukī — desiring money.
O best among men, this prostitute was very anxious to get money, and as she stood on the street at night she studied all the men who were passing by, thinking, “Oh, this one surely has money. I know he can pay the price, and I am sure he would enjoy my company very much.” Thus she thought about all the men on the street.
apy anyo vittavān ko ’pi
mām upaiṣyati bhūri-daḥ
evaṁ durāśayā dhvasta-
nidrā dvāry avalambatī
āgateṣu — when they came; apayāteṣu — and they went; sā — she; saṅketa-upajīvinī — she whose only income was from prostitution; api — maybe; anyaḥ — another one; vitta-vān — who has money; kaḥ api — someone; mām — me; upaiṣyati — will approach for love; bhūri-daḥ — and he will give lots of money; evam — thus; durāśayā — with vain hope; dhvasta — spoiled; nidrā — her sleep; dvāri — in the doorway; avalambatī — hanging on; nirgacchantī — going out toward the street; praviśatī — going back into her house; niśītham — midnight; samapadyata — arrived.
As the prostitute Piṅgalā stood in the doorway, many men came and went, walking by her house. Her only means of sustenance was prostitution, and therefore she anxiously thought, “Maybe this one who is coming now is very rich… Oh, he is not stopping, but I am sure someone else will come. Surely this man who is coming now will want to pay me for my love, and he will probably give lots of money.” Thus, with vain hope, she remained leaning against the doorway, unable to finish her business and go to sleep. Out of anxiety she would sometimes walk out toward the street, and sometimes she went back into her house. In this way, the midnight hour gradually arrived.
tasyā vittāśayā śuṣyad-
nirvedaḥ paramo jajñe
tasyāḥ — of her; vitta — for money; āśayā — by the desire; śuṣyat — dried up; vaktrāyāḥ — her face; dīna — morose; cetasaḥ — her mind; nirvedaḥ — detachment; paramaḥ — very great; jajñe — awakened; cintā — anxiety; hetuḥ — because of; sukha — happiness; āvahaḥ — bringing.
As the night wore on, the prostitute, who intensely desired money, gradually became morose, and her face dried up. Thus being filled with anxiety for money and most disappointed, she began to feel a great detachment from her situation, and happiness arose in her mind.
gītaṁ śṛṇu yathā mama
puruṣasya yathā hy asiḥ
tasyāḥ — of her; nirviṇṇa — disgusted; cittāyāḥ — whose mind; gītam — song; śṛṇu — please hear; yathā — as it is; mama — from me; nirvedaḥ — detachment; āśā — of hopes and yearnings; pāśānām — of the binding network; puruṣasya — of a person; yathā — just as; hi — certainly; asiḥ — the sword.
The prostitute felt disgusted with her material situation and thus became indifferent to it. Indeed, detachment acts like a sword, cutting to pieces the binding network of material hopes and desires. Now please hear from me the song sung by the prostitute in that situation.
na hy aṅgājāta-nirvedo
manujo mamatāṁ nṛpa
na — does not; hi — certainly; aṅga — O King; ajāta — who has not developed; nirvedaḥ — detachment; deha — of the material body; bandham — bondage; jihāsati — he desires to give up; yathā — just as; vijñāna — realized knowledge; rahitaḥ — bereft of; manujaḥ — a human being; mamatām — false sense of proprietorship; nṛpa — O King.
O King, just as a human being who is bereft of spiritual knowledge never desires to give up his false sense of proprietorship over many material things, similarly, a person who has not developed detachment never desires to give up the bondage of the material body.
aho me moha-vitatiṁ
yā kāntād asataḥ kāmaṁ
kāmaye yena bāliśā
piṅgalā — Piṅgalā; uvāca — said; aho — oh; me — my; moha — of illusion; vitatim — expansion; paśyata — just see, everyone; avijita-ātmanaḥ — of one whose mind is not controlled; yā — which person (me); kāntāt — from a lover; asataḥ — useless, insignificant; kāmam — lusty pleasure; kāmaye — I desire; yena — because; bāliśā — I am a fool.
The prostitute Piṅgalā said: Just see how greatly illusioned I am! Because I cannot control my mind, just like a fool I desire lusty pleasure from an insignificant man.
santaṁ samīpe ramaṇaṁ rati-pradaṁ
vitta-pradaṁ nityam imaṁ vihāya
moha-pradaṁ tuccham ahaṁ bhaje ’jñā
santam — being; samīpe — most near (in my heart); ramaṇam — the most dear; rati — actual love or pleasure; pradam — giving; vitta — prosperity; pradam — giving; nityam — eternal; imam — Him; vihāya — giving up; akāma-dam — who can never satisfy one’s desires; duḥkha — misery; bhaya — fear; ādhi — mental distress; śoka — lamentation; moha — illusion; pradam — giving; tuccham — most insignificant; aham — I; bhaje — serve; ajñā — an ignorant fool.
I am such a fool that I have given up the service of that person who, being eternally situated within my heart, is actually most dear to me. That most dear one is the Lord of the universe, who is the bestower of real love and happiness and the source of all prosperity. Although He is in my own heart, I have completely neglected Him. Instead I have ignorantly served insignificant men who can never satisfy my real desires and who have simply brought me unhappiness, fear, anxiety, lamentation and illusion.
aho mayātmā paritāpito vṛthā
straiṇān narād yārtha-tṛṣo ’nuśocyāt
krītena vittaṁ ratim ātmanecchatī
aho — oh; mayā — by me; ātmā — the soul; paritāpitaḥ — subjected to great pain; vṛthā — uselessly; sāṅketya — of a prostitute; vṛttyā — by the occupation; ati-vigarhya — most reprehensible; vārtayā — occupation; straiṇāt — from lusty woman-hunters; narāt — from men; yā — who (me); artha-tṛṣaḥ — from the greedy; anuśocyāt — the pitiable; krītena — with that which was sold; vittam — money; ratim — sex pleasure; ātmanā — with my body; icchatī — desiring.
Oh, how I have uselessly tortured my own soul! I have sold my body to lusty, greedy men who are themselves objects of pity. Thus practicing the most abominable profession of a prostitute, I hoped to get money and sex pleasure.
yad asthibhir nirmita-vaṁśa-vaṁsya-
sthūṇaṁ tvacā roma-nakhaiḥ pinaddham
kṣaran-nava-dvāram agāram etad
viṇ-mūtra-pūrṇaṁ mad upaiti kānyā
yat — which; asthibhiḥ — with bones; nirmita — constructed; vaṁśa — the spine; vaṁśya — the ribs; sthūṇam — the bones in the hands and legs; tvacā — by skin; roma-nakhaiḥ — by hair and nails; pinaddham — covered; kṣarat — oozing; nava — nine; dvāram — doors; agāram — house; etat — this; viṭ — stool; mūtra — urine; pūrṇam — full of; mat — besides me; upaiti — devotes oneself to; kā — what woman; anyā — other.
This material body is like a house in which I, the soul, am living. The bones forming my spine, ribs, arms and legs are like the beams, crossbeams and pillars of the house, and the whole structure, which is full of stool and urine, is covered by skin, hair and nails. The nine doors leading into this body are constantly excreting foul substances. Besides me, what woman could be so foolish as to devote herself to this material body, thinking that she might find pleasure and love in this contraption?
videhānāṁ pure hy asminn
aham ekaiva mūḍha-dhīḥ
yānyam icchanty asaty asmād
ātma-dāt kāmam acyutāt
videhānām — of the residents of Videha; pure — in the city; hi — certainly; asmin — this; aham — I; ekā — alone; eva — undoubtedly; mūḍha — fool; dhīḥ — whose intelligence; yā — (I am that one) who; anyam — another; icchantī — desiring; asatī — being most unchaste; asmāt — other than Him; ātma-dāt — who awards us our real, spiritual form; kāmam — sense gratification; acyutāt — the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Acyuta.
Certainly in this city of Videha I alone am completely foolish. I neglected the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who awards us everything, even our original spiritual form, and instead I desired to enjoy sense gratification with many men.
suhṛt preṣṭhatamo nātha
ātmā cāyaṁ śarīriṇām
rame ’nena yathā ramā
su-hṛt — well-wishing friend; preṣṭha-tamaḥ — absolutely the most dear one; nāthaḥ — Lord; ātmā — soul; ca — also; ayam — He; śarīriṇām — of all embodied beings; tam — Him; vikrīya — purchasing; ātmanā — by surrendering myself; eva — certainly; aham — I; rame — will enjoy; anena — with the Lord; yathā — just like; ramā — Lakṣmīdevī.
The Supreme Personality of Godhead is absolutely the most dear one for all living beings because He is everyone’s well-wisher and Lord. He is the Supreme Soul situated in everyone’s heart. Therefore I will now pay the price of complete surrender, and thus purchasing the Lord I will enjoy with Him just like Lakṣmīdevī.
kiyat priyaṁ te vyabhajan
kāmā ye kāma-dā narāḥ
devā vā kāla-vidrutāḥ
kiyat — how much; priyam — actual happiness; te — they; vyabhajan — have provided; kāmāḥ — sense gratification; ye — and those; kāma-dāḥ — who give sense gratification; narāḥ — men; ādi — a beginning; anta — and an end; vantaḥ — having; bhāryāyāḥ — of a wife; devāḥ — the demigods; vā — or; kāla — by time; vidrutāḥ — separated and thus disturbed.
Men provide sense gratification for women, but all these men, and even the demigods in heaven, have a beginning and an end. They are all temporary creations who will be dragged away by time. Therefore how much actual pleasure or happiness could any of them ever give to their wives?
nūnaṁ me bhagavān prīto
viṣṇuḥ kenāpi karmaṇā
nirvedo ’yaṁ durāśāyā
yan me jātaḥ sukhāvahaḥ
nūnam — undoubtedly; me — with me; bhagavān — the Supreme Lord; prītaḥ — is pleased; viṣṇuḥ — the Personality of Godhead; kena api — by some; karmaṇā — activity; nirvedaḥ — detachment from sense gratification; ayam — this; durāśāyāḥ — in one who so stubbornly hoped for material enjoyment; yat — because; me — in me; jātaḥ — it has arisen; sukha — happiness; āvahaḥ — bringing.
Although I most stubbornly hoped to enjoy the material world, somehow or other detachment has arisen in my heart, and it is making me very happy. Therefore the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Viṣṇu, must be pleased with me. Without even knowing it, I must have performed some activity satisfying to Him.
maivaṁ syur manda-bhāgyāyāḥ
puruṣaḥ śamam ṛcchati
mā — not; evam — thus; syuḥ — they could be; manda-bhāgyāyāḥ — of a woman who is truly unfortunate; kleśāḥ — miseries; nirveda — of detachment; hetavaḥ — the causes; yena — by which detachment; anubandham — the bondage; nirhṛtya — removing; puruṣaḥ — a person; śamam — real peace; ṛcchati — obtains.
A person who has developed detachment can give up the bondage of material society, friendship and love, and a person who undergoes great suffering gradually becomes, out of hopelessness, detached and indifferent to the material world. Thus, due to my great suffering, such detachment awoke in my heart; yet how could I have undergone such merciful suffering if I were actually unfortunate? Therefore, I am in fact fortunate and have received the mercy of the Lord. He must somehow or other be pleased with me.
tyaktvā durāśāḥ śaraṇaṁ
vrajāmi tam adhīśvaram
tena — by Him (the Lord); upakṛtam — the great help rendered; ādāya — accepting; śirasā — upon my head, with devotion; grāmya — ordinary sense gratification; saṅgatāḥ — related to; tyaktvā — giving up; durāśāḥ — sinful desires; śaraṇam — for shelter; vrajāmi — I am now coming; tam — to Him; adhīśvaram — the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
With devotion I accept the great benefit that the Lord has bestowed upon me. Having given up my sinful desires for ordinary sense gratification, I now take shelter of Him, the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
santuṣṭā śraddadhaty etad
ātmanā ramaṇena vai
santuṣṭā — completely satisfied; śraddadhatī — now having complete faith; etat — in the Lord’s mercy; yathā-lābhena — with whatever comes of its own accord; jīvatī — living; viharāmi — I will enjoy life; amunā — with that one; eva — only; aham — I; ātmanā — with the Supreme Personality of Godhead; ramaṇena — who is the real source of love and happiness; vai — there is no doubt about it.
I am now completely satisfied, and I have full faith in the Lord’s mercy. Therefore I will maintain myself with whatever comes of its own accord. I shall enjoy life with only the Lord, because He is the real source of love and happiness.
ko ’nyas trātum adhīśvaraḥ
saṁsāra — material existence; kūpe — in the dark well; patitam — fallen; viṣayaiḥ — by sense gratification; muṣita — stolen away; īkṣaṇam — vision; grastam — seized; kāla — of time; ahinā — by the serpent; ātmānam — the living entity; kaḥ — who; anyaḥ — else; trātum — is capable of delivering; adhīśvaraḥ — the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
The intelligence of the living entity is stolen away by activities of sense gratification, and thus he falls into the dark well of material existence. Within that well he is then seized by the deadly serpent of time. Who else but the Supreme Personality of Godhead could save the poor living entity from such a hopeless condition?
ātmaiva hy ātmano goptā
apramatta idaṁ paśyed
grastaṁ kālāhinā jagat
ātmā — the soul; eva — alone; hi — certainly; ātmanaḥ — of himself; goptā — the protector; nirvidyeta — becomes detached; yadā — when; akhilāt — from all material things; apramattaḥ — without material fever; idam — this; paśyet — can see; grastam — seized; kāla — of time; ahinā — by the serpent; jagat — the universe.
When the living entity sees that the entire universe has been seized by the serpent of time, he becomes sober and sane and at that time detaches himself from all material sense gratification. In that condition the living entity is qualified to be his own protector.
śayyām upaviveśa sā
śrī-brāhmaṇaḥ uvāca — the avadhūta said; evam — thus; vyavasita — determined; matiḥ — her mind; durāśām — the sinful desire; kānta — lovers; tarṣa — hankering for; jām — caused by; chittvā — cutting off; upaśamam — in tranquillity; āsthāya — being situated; śayyām — on her bed; upaviveśa — sat down; sā — she.
The avadhūta said: Thus, her mind completely made up, Piṅgalā cut off all her sinful desires to enjoy sex pleasure with lovers, and she became situated in perfect peace. Then she sat down on her bed.
āśā hi paramaṁ duḥkhaṁ
nairāśyaṁ paramaṁ sukham
yathā sañchidya kāntāśāṁ
sukhaṁ suṣvāpa piṅgalā
āśā — material desire; hi — certainly; paramam — the greatest; duḥkham — unhappiness; nairāśyam — freedom from material desires; paramam — the greatest; sukham — happiness; yathā — in that way; sañchidya — completely cutting off; kānta — for lovers; āśām — the desire; sukham — happily; suṣvāpa — she slept; piṅgalā — the former prostitute, Piṅgalā.
Material desire is undoubtedly the cause of the greatest unhappiness, and freedom from such desire is the cause of the greatest happiness. Therefore, completely cutting off her desire to enjoy so-called lovers, Piṅgalā very happily went to sleep.