Canto 7: The Science of GodChapter 7: What Prahlada Learned in the Womb

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Srimad Bhagavatam 7.7 Summary

In this chapter, to dissipate the doubts of his class friends, the sons of the demons, Prahlada Maharaja states how, within the womb of his mother, he had heard from the mouth of Narada Muni, who had instructed him in bhagavata-dharma.

When Hiranyakasipu left his kingdom and went to the mountain known as Mandaracala to execute severe austerities, all the demons scattered. Hiranyakasipu's wife, Kayadhu, was pregnant at that time, and the demigods, mistakenly thinking that she carried another demon in her womb, arrested her. Their plan was that as soon as the child took birth they would kill him. While they were taking Kayadhu to the heavenly planets, they met Narada Muni, who stopped them from taking her away and took her to his asrama until Hiranyakasipu's return. In Narada Muni's asrama, Kayadhu prayed for the protection of the baby in her womb, and Narada Muni reassured her and gave her instructions on spiritual knowledge. Taking advantage of those instructions, Prahlada Maharaja, although a small baby within the womb, listened very carefully. The spirit soul is always apart from the material body. There is no change in the spiritual form of the living entity. Any person above the bodily conception of life is pure and can receive transcendental knowledge. This transcendental knowledge is devotional service, and Prahlada Maharaja, while living in the womb of his mother, received instructions in devotional service from Narada Muni. Any person engaged in the service of the Lord through the instructions of a bona fide spiritual master is immediately liberated, and being free from the clutches of maya, he is relieved of all ignorance and material desires. The duty of everyone is to take shelter of the Supreme Lord and thus become free from all material desires. Regardless of the material condition in which one is situated, one can achieve this perfection. Devotional service is not dependent on the material activities of austerity, penance, mystic yoga or piety. Even without such assets, one can achieve devotional service through the mercy of a pure devotee.

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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, Founder Acarya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness