Srila Kalidas Prabhu talking to Srila Jadu Thakur Prabhu and his wife

na me ‘bhaktaś catur-vedī

mad-bhaktaḥ śva-pacaḥ priyaḥ

tasmai deyaḿ tato grāhyaḿ

sa ca pūjyo yathā hy aham

SYNONYMS

na — not; me — My; abhaktaḥ — devoid of pure devotional service; catuḥ-vedī — a scholar of the four Vedas; mat-bhaktaḥ — My devotee; śva-pacaḥ — even from a family of dog-eaters; priyaḥ — very dear; tasmai — to him (the pure devotee); deyam — should be given; tataḥ — from him; grāhyam — should be accepted (remnants of food); saḥ — that person; ca — also; pūjyaḥ — is worshipable; yathā — as much as; hi — certainly; aham — I.

TRANSLATION

"’Even though one is a very learned scholar in Sanskrit literature, if he is not engaged in pure devotional service, he is not accepted as My devotee. But if someone born in a family of dog-eaters is a pure devotee with no motives for enjoyment through fruitive activity or mental speculation, he is very dear to Me. All respect should be given to him, and whatever he offers should be accepted, for such devotees are indeed as worshipable as I am.’

viprād dvi-ṣaḍ-guṇa-yutād aravinda-nābha-

pādāravinda-vimukhāt śva-pacaḿ variṣṭham

manye tad-arpita-mano-vacanehitārtha-

prāṇaḿ punāti sa kulaḿ na tu bhūri-mānaḥ

SYNONYMS

viprāt — than a brāhmaṇa; dvi-ṣaṭ-guṇa-yutāt — who is qualified with twelve brahminical qualifications; aravinda-nābha — of Lord Viṣṇu, who has a lotuslike navel; pāda-aravinda — unto the lotus feet; vimukhāt — than a person bereft of devotion; śva-pacam — a caṇḍāla, or person accustomed to eating dogs; variṣṭham — more glorified; manye — I think; tat-arpita — dedicated unto Him; manaḥ — mind; vacana — words; īhita — activities; artha — wealth; prāṇam — life; punāti — purifies; saḥ — he; kulam — his family; na tu — but not; bhūri-mānaḥ — a brāhmaṇa proud of possessing such qualities.

TRANSLATION

"’A person may be born in a brāhmaṇa family and have all twelve brahminical qualities, but if in spite of being qualified he is not devoted to the lotus feet of Lord Kṛṣṇa, who has a navel shaped like a lotus, he is not as good as a caṇḍāla who has dedicated his mind, words, activities, wealth and life to the service of the Lord. Simply to take birth in a brāhmaṇa family or to have brahminical qualities is not sufficient. One must become a pure devotee of the Lord. If a śva-paca or caṇḍāla is a devotee, he delivers not only himself but his whole family, whereas a brāhmaṇa who is not a devotee but simply has brahminical qualifications cannot even purify himself, what to speak of his family.’

PURPORT

This and the following verse are quoted from Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (7.9.10 and 3.33.7).

aho bata śva-paco ‘to garīyān

yaj-jihvāgre vartate nāma tubhyam

tepus tapas te juhuvuḥ sasnur āryā

brahmānūcur nāma gṛṇanti ye te

SYNONYMS

aho bata — how wonderful it is; śva-pacaḥ — a dog-eater; ataḥ — than the initiated brāhmaṇa; garīyān — more glorious; yat — of whom; jihvā-agre — on the tip of the tongue; vartate — remains; nāma — the holy name; tubhyam — of You, my Lord; tepuḥ — have performed; tapaḥ — austerity; te — they; juhuvuḥ — have performed sacrifices; sasnuḥ — have bathed in all holy places; āryāḥ — actually belonging to the Āryan race; brahma — all the Vedas; anūcuḥ — have studied; nāma — the holy name; gṛṇanti — chant; ye — who; te — they.

TRANSLATION

"’My dear Lord, anyone who always keeps Your holy name on his tongue is greater than an initiated brāhmaṇa. Although he may be born in a family of dog-eaters and therefore, by material calculations, be the lowest of men, he is glorious nevertheless. That is the wonderful power of chanting the holy name of the Lord. One who chants the holy name is understood to have performed all kinds of austerities. He has studied all the Vedas, he has performed all the great sacrifices mentioned in the Vedas, and he has already taken his bath in all the holy places of pilgrimage. It is he who is factually the Āryan.’"

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