ye 'nye 'ravindÄká¹£a vimukta-mÄninas
tvayy asta-bhÄvÄd aviÅuddha-buddhayaá¸¥
Äruhya ká¹cchreá¹a paraá¹ padaá¹ tataá¸¥
patanty adho 'nÄdá¹ta-yuá¹£mad-aá¹ ghrayaá¸¥
ye anye - anyone, or all others; aravinda-aká¹£a - O lotus-eyed one; vimukta-mÄninaá¸¥ - falsely considering themselves free from the bondage of material contamination; tvayi - unto You; asta-bhÄvÄt - speculating in various ways but not knowing or desiring more information of Your lotus feet; aviÅuddha-buddhayaá¸¥ - whose intelligence is still not purified and who do not know the goal of life; Äruhya - even though achieving; ká¹cchreá¹a - by undergoing severe austerities, penances and hard labor; param padam - the highest position (according to their imagination and speculation); tataá¸¥ - from that position; patanti - they fall; adhaá¸¥ - down into material existence again; anÄdá¹ta - neglecting devotion to; yuá¹£mat - Your; aá¹ ghrayaá¸¥ - lotus feet.
Aside from devotees, there are many others, nondevotees, known as karmÄ«s, jÃ±ÄnÄ«s or yogÄ«s, philanthropists, altruists, politicians, impersonalists and voidists. There are many varieties of nondevotees who have their respective ways of liberation, but simply because they do not know the shelter of the Lordâs lotus feet, although they falsely think that they have been liberated and elevated to the highest position, they fall down. As clearly stated by the Lord Himself in Bhagavad-gÄ«tÄ (9.3):
aprÄpya mÄá¹ nivartante
âThose who are not faithful on the path of devotional service cannot attain Me, O conqueror of foes, but return to birth and death in this material world.â It doesnât matter whether one is a karmÄ«, jÃ±ÄnÄ«, yogÄ«, philanthropist, politician or whatever; if one has no love for the lotus feet of the Lord, one falls down. That is the verdict given by Lord BrahmÄ in this verse.
There are persons who advocate accepting any process and who say that whatever process one accepts will lead to the same goal, but that is refuted in this verse, where such persons are referred to as vimukta-mÄninaá¸¥, signifying that although they think they have attained the highest perfection, in fact they have not. In the present day, big, big politicians all over the world think that by scheming they can occupy the highest political post, that of president or prime minister, but we actually see that even in this life such big prime ministers, presidents and other politicians, because of being nondevotees, fall down (patanty adhaá¸¥). To become president or prime minister is not easy; one must work very hard (Äruhya ká¹cchreá¹a) to achieve the post. And even though one may reach his goal, at any moment one may be kicked down by material nature. In human society there have been many instances in which great, exalted politicians have fallen from government and become lost in historical oblivion. The cause of this is aviÅuddha-buddhayaá¸¥: their intelligence is impure. The ÅÄstra says, na te viduá¸¥ svÄrtha-gatiá¹ hi viá¹£á¹um (BhÄg. 7.5.31). One achieves the perfection of life by becoming a devotee of Viá¹£á¹u, but people do not know this. Therefore, as stated in Bhagavad-gÄ«tÄ (12.5), kleÅoÂ âdhikataras teá¹£Äm avyaktÄsakta-cetasÄm. Persons who do not ultimately accept the Supreme Personality of Godhead and take to devotional service, but who instead are attached to impersonalism and voidism, must undergo great labor to achieve their goals.
Åreyaá¸¥-sá¹tiá¹ bhaktim udasya te vibho
kliÅyanti ye kevala-bodha-labdhaye
To achieve understanding, such persons work very hard and undergo severe austerities, but their hard labor and austerities themselves are their only achievement, for they do not actually achieve the real goal of life.
Dhruva MahÄrÄja at first wanted to achieve the greatest material kingdom and greater material possessions than his father, but when he was actually favored by the Lord, who appeared before him to give him the benediction he desired, Dhruva MahÄrÄja refused it, saying, svÄmin ká¹tÄrtho âsmi varaá¹ na yÄce: âNow I am fully satisfied. I do not want any material benediction.â (Hari-bhakti-sudhodaya 7.28) This is the perfection of life. Yaá¹ labdhvÄ cÄparaá¹ lÄbhaá¹ manyate nÄdhikaá¹ tataá¸¥ (Bg. 6.22). If one achieves the shelter of the Lordâs lotus feet, one is fully satisfied and does not need to ask for any material benediction.
At night, no one can see a lotus, for lotuses blossom only during the daytime. Therefore the word aravindÄká¹£a is significant. One who is not captivated by the lotus eyes or transcendental form of the Supreme Lord is in darkness, exactly like one who cannot see a lotus. One who has not come to the point of seeing the lotus eyes and transcendental form of ÅyÄmasundara is a failure. PremÄÃ±jana-cchurita-bhakti-vilocanena santaá¸¥ sadaiva há¹dayeá¹£u vilokayanti. Those who are attached to the Supreme Personality of Godhead in love always see the Lordâs lotus eyes and lotus feet, whereas others cannot see the Lordâs beauty and are therefore classified as anÄdá¹ta-yuá¹£mad-aá¹ ghrayaá¸¥, or neglectful of the Lordâs personal form. Those who neglect the Lordâs form are surely failures on every path in life, but if one develops even a little love for the Supreme Personality of Godhead, one is liberated without difficulty (svalpam apy asya dharmasya trÄyate mahato bhayÄt). Therefore the Supreme Personality of Godhead recommends in Bhagavad-gÄ«tÄ (9.34), man-manÄ bhava mad-bhakto mad-yÄjÄ« mÄá¹ namaskuru: âSimply think of Me, become My devotee, worship Me and offer some slight homage to Me.â Simply by this process, one is guaranteed to return home, back to Godhead, and thus attain the highest perfection. The Lord further affirms in Bhagavad-gÄ«tÄ (18.54-55):
na Åocati na kÄá¹ ká¹£ati
samaá¸¥ sarveá¹£u bhÅ«teá¹£u
mad-bhaktiá¹ labhate parÄm
bhaktyÄ mÄm abhijÄnÄti
yÄvÄn yaÅ cÄsmi tattvataá¸¥
tato mÄá¹ tattvato jÃ±ÄtvÄ
âOne who is thus transcendentally situated at once realizes the Supreme Brahman and becomes fully joyful. He never laments nor desires to have anything; he is equally disposed to every living entity. In that state he attains pure devotional service unto Me. One can understand the Supreme Personality as He is only by devotional service. And when one is in full consciousness of the Supreme Lord by such devotion, he can enter into the kingdom of God.â