Canto 5: The Creative ImpetusChapter 26: A Description of the Hellish Planets

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 5.26.18

yas tv iha asaḿvibhajyāśnāti yat kiñcanopanatam anirmita-pañca-yajño vāyasa-saḿstutaḥ sa paratra kṛmibhojane narakādhame nipatati tatra śata-sahasra-yojane kṛmi-kuṇḍe kṛmi-bhūtaḥ svayaḿ kṛmibhir eva bhakṣyamāṇaḥ kṛmi-bhojano yāvat tad aprattāprahūtādo 'nirveśam ātmānaḿ yātayate


yaḥ — any person who; tu — but; ihain this life; — or; asaḿ-vibhajya — without dividing; aśnāti — eats; yat kiñcana — whatever; upanatam — obtained by Kṛṣṇa's grace; anirmita — not performing; pañca-yajñaḥ — the five kinds of sacrifice; vāyasa — with the crows; saḿstutaḥ — who is described as equal; saḥ — such a person; paratrain the next life; kṛmibhojane — named Kṛmibhojana; naraka-adhame — into the most abominable of all hells; nipatati — falls down; tatra — there; śata-sahasra-yojane — measuring 100,000 yojanas (800,000 miles); kṛmi-kuṇḍein a lake of worms; kṛmi-bhūtaḥ — becoming one of the worms; svayamhe himself; kṛmibhiḥ — by the other worms; eva — certainly; bhakṣyamāṇaḥ — being eaten; kṛmi-bhojanaḥ — eating worms; yāvatas long as; tat — that lake is wide; apratta-aprahūta — unshared and unoffered food; adaḥ — one who eats; anirveśam — who has not performed atonement; ātmānamto himself; yātayate — gives pain.


A person is considered no better than a crow if after receiving some food, he does not divide it among guests, old men and children, but simply eats it himself, or if he eats it without performing the five kinds of sacrifice. After death he is put into the most abominable hell, known as Kṛmibhojana. In that hell is a lake 100,000 yojanas [800,000 miles] wide and filled with worms. He becomes a worm in that lake and feeds on the other worms there, who also feed on him. Unless he atones for his actions before his death, such a sinful man remains in the hellish lake of Kṛmibhojana for as many years as there are yojanas in the width of the lake.


As stated in Bhagavad-gītā (3.13):

yajña-śiṣṭāśinaḥ santo

mucyante sarva-kilbiṣaiḥ

bhuñjate te tv agham pāpā

ya pacanty ātma-kāraṇāt

"The devotees of the Lord are released from all kinds of sins because they eat food which is first offered for sacrifice. Others, who prepare food for personal sense enjoyment, verily eat only sin." All food is given to us by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Eko bahūnāḿ yo vidadhāti kāmān: the Lord supplies everyone with the necessities of life. Therefore we should acknowledge His mercy by performing yajña (sacrifice). This is the duty of everyone. Indeed, the sole purpose of life is to perform yajña. According to Kṛṣṇa (Bg. 3.9):

yajñārthāt karmaṇo 'nyatra

loko 'yam karma-bandhanaḥ

tad-arthaḿ karma kaunteya

mukta-sańgaḥ samācara

"Work done as a sacrifice for Viṣṇu has to be performed, otherwise work binds one to this material world. Therefore, O son of Kuntī, perform your prescribed duties for His satisfaction, and in that way you will always remain unattached and free from bondage." If we do not perform yajña and distribute prasāda to others, our lives are condemned. Only after performing yajña and distributing the prasāda to all dependents — children, brāhmaṇas and old men — should one eat. However, one who cooks only for himself or his family is condemned, along with everyone he feeds. After death he is put into the hell known as Kṛmibhojana.

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