|Canto 5: The Creative Impetus||Chapter 19: A Description of the Island of Jambūdvīpa|
Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 5.19.27
satyaḿ diśaty arthitam arthito nṛṇāḿ
naivārthado yat punar arthitā yataḥ
svayaḿ vidhatte bhajatām anicchatām
satyam — certainly; diśati — He offers; arthitam — the object prayed for; arthitaḥ — being prayed to; nṛṇām — by the human beings; na — not; eva — indeed; artha-daḥ — the bestower of benedictions; yat — which; punaḥ — again; arthitā — a demand for a benediction; yataḥ — from which; svayam — personally; vidhatte — He gives; bhajatām — unto those engaged in His service; anicchatām — although not desiring it; icchā-pidhānam — which covers all desirable things; nija-pāda-pallavam — His own lotus feet.
The Supreme Personality of Godhead fulfills the material desires of a devotee who approaches Him with such motives, but He does not bestow benedictions upon the devotee that will cause him to demand more benedictions again. However, the Lord willingly gives the devotee shelter at His own lotus feet, even though such a person does not aspire for it, and that shelter satisfies all his desires. That is the Supreme Personality's special mercy.
The devotees mentioned in the previous verse approach the Supreme Personality of Godhead with material motives, but this verse explains how such devotees are saved from those desires. Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (2.3.10) advises:
akāmaḥ sarva-kāmo vā
yajeta puruṣaḿ param
"Whether one is freed from all material desires, is full of material desires, or desires to become one with the Supreme, he should engage in devotional service." In this way, not only will the devotee's desires be fulfilled, but the day will come when he will have no other desire than to serve the lotus feet of the Lord. One who engages in the service of the Lord with some motive is called a sakāma-bhakta, and one who serves the Lord without any motives is called an akāma-bhakta. Kṛṣṇa is so merciful that He turns a sakāma-bhakta into an akāma-bhakta. A pure devotee, an akāma-bhakta, who has no material motives, is satisfied simply to serve the lotus feet of the Lord. This is confirmed in Bhagavad-gītā (6.22). Yaḿ labdhvā cāparaḿ lābhaḿ manyate nādhikaḿ tataḥ: if one engages in the service of the lotus feet of the Lord, he does not want anything more. This is the highest stage of devotional service. The Lord is so kind even to a sakāma-bhakta, a motivated devotee, that He satisfies his desires in such a way that one day he becomes an akāma-bhakta. Dhruva Mahārāja, for example, became a bhakta with the motive of getting a better kingdom than that of his father, but finally he became an akāma-bhakta and said to the Lord, svāmin kṛtārtho'smi varaḿ na yāce: "My dear Lord, I am very satisfied simply to serve Your lotus feet. I do not want any material benefits." Sometimes it is found that a small child eats dirty things, but his parents take away the dirty things and offer him a sandeśa or some other sweetmeat. Devotees who aspire for material benedictions are compared to such children. The Lord is so kind that He takes away their material desires and gives them the highest benediction. Therefore, even for material motives, one should not worship anyone other than the Supreme Personality of Godhead; one must fully engage himself in the devotional service of the Lord so that all his desires will be fulfilled and at the end he can go back home, back to Godhead. This is explained in Caitanya-caritāmṛta (Madhya 22.37-39, 41) as follows.
Anyakāmī — a devotee may desire something other than service to the lotus feet of the Lord; yadi kare kṛṣṇera bhajana — but if he engages in Lord Kṛṣṇa's service; nā māgiteha kṛṣṇa tāre dena sva-caraṇa — Kṛṣṇa gives him shelter at His lotus feet, even though he does not aspire for it. Kṛṣṇa kahe — the Lord says; āmā bhaje — "He is engaged in My service"; māge viṣaya-sukha — "but he wants the benefits of material sense gratification." Amṛta chāḍi' viṣa māge: — "such a devotee is like a person who asks for poison instead of nectar." Ei baḍa mūrkha: "That is his foolishness." Ami-vijña: "But I am experienced." Ei mūrkhe 'viṣaya' kene diba: "Why should I give such a foolish person the dirty things of material enjoyment?" Sva-caraṇa-mṛta: "It would be better for Me to give him shelter at My lotus feet." 'Viṣaya' bhulāiba: "I shall cause him to forget all material desires." Kāma lāgi' kṛṣṇa bhaje — if one engages in the service of the Lord for sense gratification; paya kṛṣṇa-rase — the result is that he ultimately gets a taste for serving the lotus feet of the Lord. Kāma chāḍi' 'da' haite haya abhilāṣe: He then gives up all material desires and wants to become an eternal servant of the Lord.
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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda, Founder Ācārya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness