Who Is Maintaining Dharma Now? The Rishis Asked Suta

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Knowledge Bank

Who was Bhishma in previous birth?

Bhishma was the incarnation of Dyou, one of the eight Vasus (Ashta Vasus). They were all born on earth due to a curse from Sage Vasishta. Their mother, Ganga drowned seven of them soon after birth to give them relief from the curse. Bhishma lived on.

Ashwini Nakshatra meaning

Ashwini Nakshatra is named after its ruling deities Ashwini Kumaras. They are the sons of Surya and his wife Samjna in the form of a horse.

Quiz

Who is the father of Kadru and Vinata?

Rishis have already put up five among the six questions to Suta. What is the greatest goal? How to achieve it? Why has Bhagawan taken avatara as Krishna? The fourth and fifth questions both pertain to his leelas, one at a macro level, at a universal level; the second at the level of avataras specific to a place and time. Now before moving on to the sixth and final question the rishis are justifying their eagerness to listen to the stories of his leelas. Through the next two shlokas. कलिमागतमज्ञाय क्षेत्र....

Rishis have already put up five among the six questions to Suta.
What is the greatest goal?
How to achieve it?
Why has Bhagawan taken avatara as Krishna?
The fourth and fifth questions both pertain to his leelas, one at a macro level, at a universal level; the second at the level of avataras specific to a place and time.
Now before moving on to the sixth and final question the rishis are justifying their eagerness to listen to the stories of his leelas.
Through the next two shlokas.
कलिमागतमज्ञाय क्षेत्रेऽस्मिन् वैष्णवे वयम्
आसीना दीर्घसत्रेण कथायां सक्षणा हरेः
There are two kinds of karma - Vihita karma and Avihita karma.
What should be done unfailingly is Vihita karma.
What should never be done is Avihita karma.
The dos and don'ts.
As Kaliyuga comes and progresses, the scope of Vihita karma reduces.
Many of the sadhana paddhatis, there are thousands of them, they will stop yielding any benefit.
This is a characteristic of Kali.
Kali has not yet started, but its signs can be seen.
The rishis have chosen to do the thousand-year-long yajna called Sahasra Sama, they are not doing tapas, they are not doing dhyana they have chosen to do yajna.
There is a reason behind this.
Vedic yajnas never become redundant or resultless.
As long as there is Sun in the sky, Moon in the sky, as long as there is a waxing moon and waning moon, Vedic yajnas will yield results.
Because the yajna that we do on earth is just a replica of the celestial yajna that happens in the sky.
Ahutis of the Moon are offered in the Sun over a period of 15 days.
That's why the Moon goes on reducing in size.
This celestial phenomenon is behind the sustenance of life on earth.
As long as this phenomenon in the sky exists, yajnas on earth will also yield results.
Rishis are not sure whether the other forms of sadhana will yield any benefit.
Now they are all under deeksha for the yajna.
When you are in deeksha, you are not supposed to do any other physical act.
Anything other than what is part of the yajna.
So they have ample time.
To listen to Bhagawan's stories.
Yajnas don't run throughout the day.
There are savanas like one in the morning, one in the noon time, one in the evening like that.
It is not like from sunrise to sunset they will all be sitting and doing homas.
They have time to listen to Bhagawan's stories.
And of course rishis have the protection of being inside the Vaishnava Kshetra which is naimisharanya.
त्वं न सन्दर्शितो धात्रा दुस्तरं निस्तितीर्षताम्
कलिं सत्वहरं पुंसां कर्णधार इवार्णवम्
Out of the three gunas, sattva guna rajo guna and tamo guna, Kali destroys the sattva guna first of all.

Sattva guna is what gives stability and steadiness to the mind.
Only if you have a steady mind can you have qualities like intelligence, knowledge, and discretion.
If outside Naimisharanya, even the Rishis will end up losing sattva guna.
So this is going to be the common man's predicament.
This is why stories of leelas are required.
They are going to be the boat which will help people cross the rough sea which is kaliyuga.
Suta is God sent.
धात्रा संदर्शितः - The Almighty has only sent him to Naimisharanya with Bhagawan's beautiful stories.
Now the sixth question -
ब्रूहि योगेश्वरे कृष्णे ब्रह्मण्ये धर्मवर्मणि
स्वां काष्ठामधुनोपेते धर्मः कं शरणं गतः
Krishna after accomplishing the purpose of his avatara has returned to his abode.
As long as he was here on earth, he was sustaining dharma.
As both Yogeshwara and Brahmanya.
As Brahmanya he ensured the maintenance of varna dharma and ashrama dharma in society.
Then when dharma reduces, the path is to internally realize dharma through Yoga.
For this also he is the ishwara, Yogeswara.
Now that he has gone back, it is not that dharma also went with him.
Even now there is no complete absence of dharma.
This we can feel.
You are here.
You are here to tell us his stories.
We are still able to do yajnas.
So, not what or who dharma is depending on?
Who or what is sustaining dharma now?
With this sixth question ends the first chapter of the first skandha of Srimad Bhagavata.

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