Śrīmad Bhāgavatam|Canto 12 Chapter 2
The Symptoms of Kali-yuga
tataś cānu-dinaṁ dharmaḥ
satyaṁ śaucaṁ kṣamā dayā
kālena balinā rājan
naṅkṣyaty āyur balaṁ smṛtiḥ
śrī-śukaḥ uvāca — Śukadeva Gosvāmī said; tataḥ — then; ca — and; anudinam — day after day; dharmaḥ — religion; satyam — truth; śaucam — cleanliness; kṣamā — tolerance; dayā — mercy; kālena — by the force of time; balinā — strong; rājan — O King Parīkṣit; naṅkṣyati — will become ruined; āyuḥ — duration of life; balam — strength; smṛtiḥ — memory.
Śukadeva Gosvāmī said: Then, O King, religion, truthfulness, cleanliness, tolerance, mercy, duration of life, physical strength and memory will all diminish day by day because of the powerful influence of the Age of Kali.
vittam eva kalau nṝṇāṁ
kāraṇaṁ balam eva hi
vittam — wealth; eva — alone; kalau — in the Age of Kali; nṝṇām — among men; janma — of good birth; ācāra — good behavior; guṇa — and good qualities; udayaḥ — the cause of manifestation; dharma — of religious duty; nyāya — and reason; vyavasthāyām — in the establishment; kāraṇam — the cause; balam — strength; eva — only; hi — indeed.
In Kali-yuga, wealth alone will be considered the sign of a man’s good birth, proper behavior and fine qualities. And law and justice will be applied only on the basis of one’s power.
dāmpatye ’bhirucir hetur
strītve puṁstve ca hi ratir
vipratve sūtram eva hi
dām-patye — in the relationship of husband and wife; abhiruciḥ — superficial attraction; hetuḥ — the reason; māyā — deceit; eva — indeed; vyāvahārike — in business; strītve — in being a woman; puṁstve — in being a man; ca — and; hi — indeed; ratiḥ — sex; vipratve — in being a brāhmaṇa; sūtram — the sacred thread; eva — only; hi — indeed.
Men and women will live together merely because of superficial attraction, and success in business will depend on deceit. Womanliness and manliness will be judged according to one’s expertise in sex, and a man will be known as a brāhmaṇa just by his wearing a thread.
pāṇḍitye cāpalaṁ vacaḥ
liṅgam — the external symbol; eva — merely; āśrama-khyātau — in knowing a person’s spiritual order; anyonya — mutual; āpatti — of exchange; kāraṇam — the cause; avṛttyā — by lack of livelihood; nyāya — in credibility; daurbalyam — the weakness; pāṇḍitye — in scholarship; cāpalam — tricky; vacaḥ — words.
A person’s spiritual position will be ascertained merely according to external symbols, and on that same basis people will change from one spiritual order to the next. A person’s propriety will be seriously questioned if he does not earn a good living. And one who is very clever at juggling words will be considered a learned scholar.
sādhutve dambha eva tu
svīkāra eva codvāhe
snānam eva prasādhanam
anāḍhyatā — poverty; eva — simply; asādhutve — in one’s being unholy; sādhutve — in virtue, or success; dambhaḥ — hypocrisy; eva — alone; tu — and; svī-kāraḥ — verbal acceptance; eva — alone; ca — and; udvāhe — in marriage; snānam — bathing with water; eva — alone; prasādhanam — cleaning and decorating of the body.
A person will be judged unholy if he does not have money, and hypocrisy will be accepted as virtue. Marriage will be arranged simply by verbal agreement, and a person will think he is fit to appear in public if he has merely taken a bath.
dūre vāry-ayanaṁ tīrthaṁ
satyatve dhārṣṭyam eva hi
yaśo ’rthe dharma-sevanam
dūre — situated far away; vāri — of water; ayanam — a reservoir; tīrtham — holy place; lāvaṇyam — beauty; keśa — hair; dhāraṇam — carrying; udaram-bharatā — filling the belly; sva-arthaḥ — the goal of life; satyatve — in so-called truth; dhārṣṭyam — audacity; eva — simply; hi — indeed; dākṣyam — expertise; kuṭumba-bharaṇam — maintaining a family; yaśaḥ — fame; arthe — for the sake of; dharma-sevanam — observance of religious principles.
A sacred place will be taken to consist of no more than a reservoir of water located at a distance, and beauty will be thought to depend on one’s hairstyle. Filling the belly will become the goal of life, and one who is audacious will be accepted as truthful. He who can maintain a family will be regarded as an expert man, and the principles of religion will be observed only for the sake of reputation.
evaṁ prajābhir duṣṭābhir
yo balī bhavitā nṛpaḥ
evam — in this way; prajābhiḥ — with populace; duṣṭābhiḥ — corrupted; ākīrṇe — being crowded; kṣiti-maṇḍale — the earth globe; brahma — among the brāhmaṇas; viṭ — vaiśyas; kṣatra — kṣatriyas; śūdrāṇām — and śūdras; yaḥ — whoever; balī — the strongest; bhavitā — he will become; nṛpaḥ — the king.
As the earth thus becomes crowded with a corrupt population, whoever among any of the social classes shows himself to be the strongest will gain political power.
prajā hi lubdhai rājanyair
prajāḥ — the citizens; hi — indeed; lubdhaiḥ — avaricious; rājanyaiḥ — by the royal order; nirghṛṇaiḥ — merciless; dasyu — of ordinary thieves; dharmabhiḥ — acting according to the nature; ācchinna — taken away; dāra — their wives; draviṇāḥ — and property; yāsyanti — they will go; giri — to the mountains; kānanam — and forests.
Losing their wives and properties to such avaricious and merciless rulers, who will behave no better than ordinary thieves, the citizens will flee to the mountains and forests.
śāka — leaves; mūla — roots; āmiṣa — meat; kṣaudra — wild honey; phala — fruits; puṣpa — flowers; aṣṭi — and seeds; bhojanāḥ — eating; anāvṛṣṭyā — because of drought; vinaṅkṣyanti — they will become ruined; durbhikṣa — by famine; kara — and taxation; pīḍitāḥ — tormented.
Harassed by famine and excessive taxes, people will resort to eating leaves, roots, flesh, wild honey, fruits, flowers and seeds. Struck by drought, they will become completely ruined.
himair anyonyataḥ prajāḥ
kṣut-tṛḍbhyāṁ vyādhibhiś caiva
santapsyante ca cintayā
śīta — by cold; vāta — wind; ātapa — the heat of the sun; prāvṛt — torrential rain; himaiḥ — and snow; anyonyataḥ — by quarrel; prajāḥ — the citizens; kṣut — by hunger; tṛḍbhyām — and thirst; vyādhibhiḥ — by diseases; ca — also; eva — indeed; santapsyante — they will suffer great distress; ca — and; cintayā — by anxiety.
The citizens will suffer greatly from cold, wind, heat, rain and snow. They will be further tormented by quarrels, hunger, thirst, disease and severe anxiety.
triṁśad viṁśati varṣāṇi
paramāyuḥ kalau nṛṇām
triṁśat — thirty; viṁśati — plus twenty; varṣāṇi — years; parama-āyuḥ — the maximum duration of life; kalau — in Kali-yuga; nṛṇām — of men.
The maximum duration of life for human beings in Kali-yuga will become fifty years.
naṣṭe veda-pathe nṛṇām
nānā-vṛttiṣu vai nṛṣu
itthaṁ kalau gata-prāye
kṣīyamāṇeṣu — having become smaller; deheṣu — the bodies; dehinām — of all living entities; kali-doṣataḥ — by the contamination of the Age of Kali; varṇa-āśrama-vatām — of the members of varṇāśrama society; dharme — when their religious principles; naṣṭe — have been destroyed; veda-pathe — the path of the Vedas; nṛṇām — for all men; pāṣaṇḍa-pracure — mostly atheism; dharme — religion; dasyu-prāyeṣu — mostly thieves; rājasu — the kings; caurya — banditry; anṛta — lying; vṛthā-hiṁsā — useless slaughter; nānā — various; vṛttiṣu — their occupations; vai — indeed; nṛṣu — when men; śūdra-prāyeṣu — mostly low-class śūdras; varṇeṣu — the so-called social orders; chāga-prāyāsu — no better than goats; dhenuṣu — the cows; gṛha-prāyeṣu — just like materialistic homes; āśrameṣu — the spiritual hermitages; yauna-prāyeṣu — extending no further than marriage; bandhuṣu — family ties; aṇu-prāyāsu — mostly very small; oṣadhīṣu — plants and herbs; śamī-prāyeṣu — just like śamī trees; sthāsnuṣu — all the trees; vidyut-prāyeṣu — always manifesting lightning; megheṣu — the clouds; śūnya-prāyeṣu — devoid of religious life; sadmasu — the homes; ittham — thus; kalau — when the Age of Kali; gata-prāye — is almost finished; janeṣu — the people; khara-dharmiṣu — when they have assumed the characteristics of asses; dharma-trāṇāya — for the deliverance of religion; sattvena — in the pure mode of goodness; bhagavān — the Supreme Personality of Godhead; avatariṣyati — will descend.
By the time the Age of Kali ends, the bodies of all creatures will be greatly reduced in size, and the religious principles of followers of varṇāśrama will be ruined. The path of the Vedas will be completely forgotten in human society, and so-called religion will be mostly atheistic. The kings will mostly be thieves, the occupations of men will be stealing, lying and needless violence, and all the social classes will be reduced to the lowest level of śūdras. Cows will be like goats, spiritual hermitages will be no different from mundane houses, and family ties will extend no further than the immediate bonds of marriage. Most plants and herbs will be tiny, and all trees will appear like dwarf śamī trees. Clouds will be full of lightning, homes will be devoid of piety, and all human beings will have become like asses. At that time, the Supreme Personality of Godhead will appear on the earth. Acting with the power of pure spiritual goodness, He will rescue eternal religion.
cara-acara — of all moving and nonmoving living beings; guroḥ — of the spiritual master; viṣṇoḥ — the Supreme Lord, Viṣṇu; īśvarasya — the Supreme Personality of Godhead; akhila — of all; ātmanaḥ — of the Supreme Soul; dharma-trāṇāya — for the protection of religion; sādhūnām — of saintly men; janma — the birth; karma — of their fruitive activities; apanuttaye — for the cessation.
Lord Viṣṇu — the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the spiritual master of all moving and nonmoving living beings, and the Supreme Soul of all — takes birth to protect the principles of religion and to relieve His saintly devotees from the reactions of material work.
śambhala-grāma — in the village Śambhala; mukhyasya — of the chief citizen; brāhmaṇasya — of the brāhmaṇa; mahā-ātmanaḥ — the great soul; bhavane — in the home; viṣṇuyaśasaḥ — of Viṣṇuyaśā; kalkiḥ — Lord Kalki; prādurbhaviṣyati — will appear.
Lord Kalki will appear in the home of the most eminent brāhmaṇa of Śambhala village, the great soul Viṣṇuyaśā.
aśvam āśu-gam āruhya
vicarann āśunā kṣauṇyāṁ
aśvam — His horse; āśu-gam — swift-traveling; āruhya — mounting; devadattam — named Devadatta; jagat-patiḥ — the Lord of the universe; asinā — with His sword; asādhu-damanam — (the horse who) subdues the unholy; aṣṭa — with eight; aiśvarya — mystic opulences; guṇa — and transcendental qualities of the Personality of Godhead; anvitaḥ — endowed; vicaran — traveling about; āśunā — swift; kṣauṇyām — upon the earth; hayena — by His horse; apratima — unrivaled; dyutiḥ — whose effulgence; nṛpa-liṅga — with the dress of kings; chadaḥ — disguising themselves; dasyūn — thieves; koṭiśaḥ — by the millions; nihaniṣyati — He will slaughter.
Lord Kalki, the Lord of the universe, will mount His swift horse Devadatta and, sword in hand, travel over the earth exhibiting His eight mystic opulences and eight special qualities of Godhead. Displaying His unequaled effulgence and riding with great speed, He will kill by the millions those thieves who have dared dress as kings.
atha teṣāṁ bhaviṣyanti
manāṁsi viśadāni vai
atha — then; teṣām — of them; bhaviṣyanti — will become; manāṁsi — the minds; viśadāni — clear; vai — indeed; vāsudeva — of Lord Vāsudeva; aṅga — of the body; rāga — from the cosmetic decorations; ati-puṇya — most sacred; gandha — having the fragrance; anila — by the wind; spṛśām — of those who have been touched; paura — of the city-dwellers; jāna-padānām — and the residents of the smaller towns and villages; vai — indeed; hateṣu — when they have been killed; akhila — all; dasyuṣu — the rascal kings.
After all the impostor kings have been killed, the residents of the cities and towns will feel the breezes carrying the most sacred fragrance of the sandalwood paste and other decorations of Lord Vāsudeva, and their minds will thereby become transcendentally pure.
teṣāṁ prajā-visargaś ca
sattva-mūrtau hṛdi sthite
teṣām — of them; prajā — of progeny; visargaḥ — the creation; ca — and; sthaviṣṭhaḥ — abundant; sambhaviṣyati — will be; vāsudeve — Lord Vāsudeva; bhagavati — the Supreme Personality of Godhead; sattva-mūrtau — in His transcendental form of pure goodness; hṛdi — in their hearts; sthite — when He is situated.
When Lord Vāsudeva, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, appears in their hearts in His transcendental form of goodness, the remaining citizens will abundantly repopulate the earth.
kalkir dharma-patir hariḥ
kṛtaṁ bhaviṣyati tadā
prajā-sūtiś ca sāttvikī
yadā — when; avatīrṇaḥ — incarnates; bhagavān — the Supreme Lord; kalkiḥ — Kalki; dharma-patiḥ — the master of religion; hariḥ — the Supreme Personality of Godhead; kṛtam — Satya-yuga; bhaviṣyati — will begin; tadā — then; prajā-sūtiḥ — the creation of progeny; ca — and; sāttvikī — in the mode of goodness.
When the Supreme Lord has appeared on earth as Kalki, the maintainer of religion, Satya-yuga will begin, and human society will bring forth progeny in the mode of goodness.
yadā candraś ca sūryaś ca
bhaviṣyati tadā kṛtam
yadā — when; candraḥ — the moon; ca — and; sūryaḥ — the sun; ca — and; tathā — also; tiṣya — the asterism Tiṣyā (more commonly known as Puṣyā, extending from 3° 20´ to 16° 40´ Cancer); bṛhaspatī — and the planet Jupiter; eka-rāśau — in the same constellation (Cancer); sameṣyanti — will enter simultaneously; bhaviṣyati — will be; tadā — then; kṛtam — Satya-yuga.
When the moon, the sun and Bṛhaspatī are together in the constellation Karkaṭa, and all three enter simultaneously into the lunar mansion Puṣyā — at that exact moment the age of Satya, or Kṛta, will begin.
ye ’tītā vartamānā ye
bhaviṣyanti ca pārthivāḥ
te ta uddeśataḥ proktā
ye — those who; atītāḥ — past; vartamānāḥ — present; ye — who; bhaviṣyanti — will be in the future; ca — and; pārthivāḥ — kings of the earth; te te — all of them; uddeśataḥ — by brief mention; proktāḥ — described; vaṁśīyāḥ — the members of the dynasties; soma-sūryayoḥ — of the sun-god and the moon-god.
Thus I have described all the kings — past, present and future — who belong to the dynasties of the sun and the moon.
ārabhya bhavato janma
etad varṣa-sahasraṁ tu
ārabhya — beginning from; bhavataḥ — of your good self (Parīkṣit); janma — the birth; yāvat — up until; nanda — of King Nanda, the son of Mahānandi; abhiṣecanam — the coronation; etat — this; varṣa — years; sahasram — one thousand; tu — and; śatam — one hundred; pañca-daśa-uttaram — plus fifty.
From your birth up to the coronation of King Nanda, 1,150 years will pass.
saptarṣīṇāṁ tu yau pūrvau
dṛśyete uditau divi
tayos tu madhye nakṣatraṁ
dṛśyate yat samaṁ niśi
tenaiva ṛṣayo yuktās
tiṣṭhanty abda-śataṁ nṛṇām
te tvadīye dvijāḥ kāla
adhunā cāśritā maghāḥ
sapta-ṛṣīṇām — of the constellation of the seven sages (the constellation known to Westerners as Ursa Major); tu — and; yau — which two stars; pūrvau — first; dṛśyete — are seen; uditau — risen; divi — in the sky; tayoḥ — of the two (named Pulaha and Kratu); tu — and; madhye — between; nakṣatram — the lunar mansion; dṛśyate — is seen; yat — which; samam — on the same line of celestial longitude, as their midpoint; niśi — in the night sky; tena — with that lunar mansion; eva — indeed; ṛṣayaḥ — the seven sages; yuktāḥ — are connected; tiṣṭhanti — they remain; abda-śatam — one hundred years; nṛṇām — of human beings; te — these seven sages; tvadīye — in your; dvijāḥ — the elevated brāhmaṇas; kāle — in the time; adhunā — now; ca — and; āśritāḥ — are situated; maghāḥ — in the asterism Maghā.
Of the seven stars forming the constellation of the seven sages, Pulaha and Kratu are the first to rise in the night sky. If a line running north and south were drawn through their midpoint, whichever of the lunar mansions this line passes through is said to be the ruling asterism of the constellation for that time. The Seven Sages will remain connected with that particular lunar mansion for one hundred human years. Currently, during your lifetime, they are situated in the nakṣatra called Maghā.
viṣṇor bhagavato bhānuḥ
kṛṣṇākhyo ’sau divaṁ gataḥ
tadāviśat kalir lokaṁ
pāpe yad ramate janaḥ
viṣṇoḥ — of Viṣṇu; bhagavataḥ — the Supreme Personality of Godhead; bhānuḥ — the sun; kṛṣṇa-ākhyaḥ — known as Kṛṣṇa; asau — He; divam — to the spiritual sky; gataḥ — having returned; tadā — then; aviśat — entered; kaliḥ — the Age of Kali; lokam — this world; pāpe — in sin; yat — in which age; ramate — take pleasure; janaḥ — the people.
The Supreme Lord, Viṣṇu, is brilliant like the sun and is known as Kṛṣṇa. When He returned to the spiritual sky, Kali entered this world, and people then began to take pleasure in sinful activities.
yāvat sa pāda-padmābhyāṁ
spṛśan āste ramā-patiḥ
tāvat kalir vai pṛthivīṁ
parākrantuṁ na cāśakat
yāvat — as long as; saḥ — He, Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa; pāda-padmābhyām — with His lotus feet; spṛśan — touching; āste — remained; ramā-patiḥ — the husband of the goddess of fortune; tāvat — for that long; kaliḥ — the Age of Kali; vai — indeed; pṛthivīm — the earth; parākrantum — to overcome; na — not; ca — and; aśakat — was able.
As long as Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the husband of the goddess of fortune, touched the earth with His lotus feet, Kali was powerless to subdue this planet.
yadā devarṣayaḥ sapta
maghāsu vicaranti hi
tadā pravṛttas tu kalir
yadā — when; deva-ṛṣayaḥ sapta — the seven sages among the demigods; maghāsu — in the lunar mansion Maghā; vicaranti — are traveling; hi — indeed; tadā — then; pravṛttaḥ — begins; tu — and; kaliḥ — the Age of Kali; dvādaśa — twelve; abda-śata — centuries [These twelve hundred years of the demigods equal 432,000 earth years]; ātmakaḥ — consisting of.
When the constellation of the seven sages is passing through the lunar mansion Maghā, the Age of Kali begins. It comprises twelve hundred years of the demigods.
yadā maghābhyo yāsyanti
tadā nandāt prabhṛty eṣa
kalir vṛddhiṁ gamiṣyati
yadā — when; maghābhyaḥ — from Maghā; yāsyanti — they will go; pūrva-āṣāḍhām — to the next lunar mansion, Pūrvāṣāḍhā; mahā-ṛṣayaḥ — the seven great sages; tadā — then; nandāt — beginning from Nanda; prabhṛti — and his descendants; eṣaḥ — this; kaliḥ — Age of Kali; vṛddhim — maturity; gamiṣyati — will attain.
When the great sages of the Saptarṣi constellation pass from Maghā to Pūrvāsāḍhā, Kali will have his full strength, beginning from King Nanda and his dynasty.
yasmin kṛṣṇo divaṁ yātas
tasminn eva tadāhani
iti prāhuḥ purā-vidaḥ
yasmin — on which; kṛṣṇaḥ — Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa; divam — to the spiritual world; yātaḥ — gone; tasmin — on that; eva — same; tadā — then; ahani — day; pratipannam — obtained; kali-yugam — the Age of Kali; iti — thus; prāhuḥ — they say; purā — of the past; vidaḥ — the experts.
Those who scientifically understand the past declare that on the very day that Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa departed for the spiritual world, the influence of the Age of Kali began.
caturthe tu punaḥ kṛtam
bhaviṣyati tadā nṝṇāṁ
divya — of the demigods; abdānām — years; sahasra — of one thousand; ante — at the end; caturthe — in the fourth age, Kali; tu — and; punaḥ — again; kṛtam — the Satya-yuga; bhaviṣyati — will be; tadā — then; nṝṇām — of men; manaḥ — the minds; ātma-prakāśakam — self-luminous.
After the one thousand celestial years of Kali-yuga, the Satya-yuga will manifest again. At that time the minds of all men will become self-effulgent.
ity eṣa mānavo vaṁśo
yathā saṅkhyāyate bhuvi
tās tā jñeyā yuge yuge
iti — thus (in the cantos of this Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam); eṣaḥ — this; mānavaḥ — descending from Vaivasvata Manu; vaṁśaḥ — the dynasty; yathā — as; saṅkhyāyate — it is enumerated; bhuvi — upon the earth; tathā — in the same way; viṭ — of the vaiśyas; śūdra — śūdras; viprāṇām — and brāhmaṇas; tāḥ tāḥ — the situations of each; jñeyāḥ — are to be understood; yuge yuge — in each age.
Thus I have described the royal dynasty of Manu, as it is known on this earth. One can similarly study the history of the vaiśyas, śūdras and brāhmaṇas living in the various ages.
kīrtir eva sthitā bhuvi
eteṣām — of these; nāma — their names; liṅgānām — which are the only means of remembering them; puruṣāṇām — of the personalities; mahā-ātmanām — who were great souls; kathā — the stories; mātra — merely; avaśiṣṭānām — whose remaining portion; kīrtiḥ — the glories; eva — only; sthitā — are present; bhuvi — on the earth.
These personalities, who were great souls, are now known only by their names. They exist only in accounts from the past, and only their fame remains on the earth.
devāpiḥ śāntanor bhrātā
devāpiḥ — Devāpi; śāntanoḥ — of Mahārāja Śāntanu; bhrātā — the brother; maruḥ — Maru; ca — and; ikṣvāku-vaṁśa-jaḥ — born in the dynasty of Ikṣvāku; kalāpa-grāme — in the village Kalāpa; āsāte — the two of them are living; mahā — great; yoga-bala — with mystic power; anvitau — endowed.
Devāpi, the brother of Mahārāja Śāntanu, and Maru, the descendant of Ikṣvāku, both possess great mystic strength and are living even now in the village of Kalāpa.
tāv ihaitya kaler ante
tau — they (Maru and Devāpi); iha — to human society; etya — returning; kaleḥ — of the Age of Kali; ante — at the end; vāsudeva — by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vāsudeva; anuśikṣitau — instructed; varṇa-āśrama — the divine system of occupational and spiritual orders of society; yutam — comprising; dharmam — the code of eternal religion; pūrva-vat — just as previously; prathayiṣyataḥ — they will promulgate.
At the end of the Age of Kali, these two kings, having received instruction directly from the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vāsudeva, will return to human society and reestablish the eternal religion of man, characterized by the divisions of varṇa and āśrama, just as it was before.
kṛtaṁ tretā dvāparaṁ ca
kaliś ceti catur-yugam
bhuvi prāṇiṣu vartate
kṛtam — Satya-yuga; tretā — Tretā-yuga; dvāparam — Dvāpara-yuga; ca — and; kaliḥ — Kali-yuga; ca — and; iti — thus; catuḥ-yugam — the cycle of four ages; anena — by this; krama — sequential; yogena — pattern; bhuvi — in this world; prāṇiṣu — among living beings; vartate — goes on continuously.
The cycle of four ages — Satya, Tretā, Dvāpara and Kali — continues perpetually among living beings on this earth, repeating the same general sequence of events.
rājann ete mayā proktā
bhūmau mamatvaṁ kṛtvānte
hitvemāṁ nidhanaṁ gatāḥ
rājan — O King Parīkṣit; ete — these; mayā — by me; proktāḥ — described; nara-devāḥ — kings; tathā — and; apare — other human beings; bhūmau — upon the earth; mamatvam — possessiveness; kṛtvā — exerting; ante — in the end; hitvā — giving up; imām — this world; nidhanam — destruction; gatāḥ — met.
My dear King Parīkṣit, all these kings I have described, as well as all other human beings, come to this earth and stake their claims, but ultimately they all must give up this world and meet their destruction.
rāja-nāmno ’pi yasya ca
bhūta-dhruk tat-kṛte svārthaṁ
kiṁ veda nirayo yataḥ
kṛmi — of worms; viṭ — stool; bhasma — and ashes; saṁjñā — the designation; ante — in the end; rāja-nāmnaḥ — going by the name “king”; api — even though; yasya — of which (body); ca — and; bhūta — of living beings; dhruk — an enemy; tat-kṛte — for the sake of that body; sva-artham — his own best interest; kim — what; veda — does he know; nirayaḥ — punishment in hell; yataḥ — because of which.
Even though a person’s body may now have the designation “king,” in the end its name will be “worms,” “stool” or “ashes.” What can a person who injures other living beings for the sake of his body know about his own self-interest, since his activities are simply leading him to hell?
kathaṁ seyam akhaṇḍā bhūḥ
pūrvair me puruṣair dhṛtā
mat-putrasya ca pautrasya
mat-pūrvā vaṁśa-jasya vā
katham — how; sā iyam — this same; akhaṇḍā — unbounded; bhūḥ — earth; pūrvaiḥ — by the predecessors; me — my; puruṣaiḥ — by the personalities; dhṛtā — held in control; mat-putrasya — of my son; ca — and; pautrasya — of the grandson; mat-pūrvā — now under my sway; vaṁśa-jasya — of the descendant; vā — or.
[The materialistic king thinks:] “This unbounded earth was held by my predecessors and is now under my sovereignty. How can I arrange for it to remain in the hands of my sons, grandsons and other descendants?”
mahīṁ mamatayā cobhau
hitvānte ’darśanaṁ gatāḥ
tejaḥ — fire; ap — water; anna — and earth; mayam — composed of; kāyam — this body; gṛhītvā — accepting; ātmatayā — with the sense of “I”; abudhāḥ — the unintelligent; mahīm — this earth; mamatayā — with the sense of “my”; ca — and; ubhau — both; hitvā — giving up; ante — ultimately; adarśanam — disappearance; gatāḥ — they have obtained.
Although the foolish accept the body made of earth, water and fire as “me” and this earth as “mine,” in every case they have ultimately abandoned both their body and the earth and passed away into oblivion.
ye ye bhū-patayo rājan
bhuñjate bhuvam ojasā
kālena te kṛtāḥ sarve
kathā-mātrāḥ kathāsu ca
ye ye — whatever; bhū-patayaḥ — kings; rājan — O King Parīkṣit; bhuñjate — enjoy; bhuvam — the world; ojasā — with their power; kālena — by the force of time; te — they; kṛtāḥ — have been made; sarve — all; kathā-mātrāḥ — mere accounts; kathāsu — in various histories; ca — and.
My dear King Parīkṣit, all these kings who tried to enjoy the earth by their strength were reduced by the force of time to nothing more than historical accounts.