|Canto 5: The Creative Impetus||Chapter 6: The Activities of Lord Ṛṣabhadeva|
Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 5.6.6
athaivam akhila-loka-pāla-lalāmo 'pi vilakṣaṇair jaḍavad avadhūta-veṣa-bhāṣā-caritair avilakṣita-bhagavat-prabhāvo yogināḿ sāmparāya-vidhim anuśikṣayan sva-kalevaraḿ jihāsur ātmany ātmānam asaḿvyavahitam anarthāntara-bhāvenānvīkṣamāṇa uparatānuvṛttir upararāma
atha — thereafter; evam — in this way; akhila-loka-pāla-lalāmaḥ — the head of all kings and monarchs of the universe; api — although; vilakṣaṇaiḥ — various; jaḍa-vat — as if stupid; avadhūta-veṣa-bhāṣā-caritaiḥ — by the dress, language and characteristics of an avadhūta; avilakṣita-bhagavat-prabhāvaḥ — hiding the opulence of the Supreme Personality of Godhead (keeping Himself like an ordinary human being); yoginām — of the yogīs; sāmparāya-vidhim — the method of giving up this material body; anuśikṣayan — teaching; sva-kalevaram — His own personal body, which is not at all material; jihāsuḥ — desiring to give up like an ordinary human being; ātmani — unto Vāsudeva, the original person; ātmānam — Himself, Lord Ṛṣabhadeva, being an āveśa-avatāra of Lord Viṣṇu; asaḿvyavahitam — without intervention by the illusory energy; anartha-antara-bhāvena — Himself in the status of Viṣṇu; anvīkṣamāṇaḥ — always seeing; uparata-anuvṛttiḥ — who was acting as if giving up His material body; upararāma — ceased His pastimes as the King of this planet.
Lord Ṛṣabhadeva was the head of all kings and emperors within this universe, but assuming the dress and language of an avadhūta, He acted as if dull and materially bound. Consequently no one could observe His divine opulence. He adopted this behavior just to teach yogīs how to give up the body. Nonetheless, He maintained His original position as a plenary expansion of Lord Vāsudeva, Kṛṣṇa. Remaining always in that state, He gave up His pastimes as Lord Ṛṣabhadeva within the material world. If, following in the footsteps of Lord Ṛṣabhadeva, one can give up his subtle body, there is no chance that one will accept a material body again.
As Lord Kṛṣṇa says in Bhagavad-gītā (4.9):
janma karma ca me divyam
evaḿ yo vetti tattvataḥ
tyaktvā dehaḿ punar janma
naiti mām eti so 'rjuna
"One who knows the transcendental nature of My appearance and activities does not, upon leaving the body, take his birth again in this material world, but attains My eternal abode, O Arjuna."
This is possible simply by keeping oneself an eternal servant of the Supreme Lord. One must understand his constitutional position and the constitutional position of the Supreme Lord as well. Both have the same spiritual identity. Maintaining oneself as a servant of the Supreme Lord, one should avoid rebirth in this material world. If one keeps himself spiritually fit and thinks of himself as an eternal servant of the Supreme Lord, he will be successful at the time he has to give up the material body.
Copyright © The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust International, Inc.
His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda, Founder Ācārya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness