One thing I have often found interesting when reading books like the Srimad Bhagavatam and the Maha Bharata, is how far back the recorded oral histories go. Often Millions of Years. On our last visit to Mexico we were learning some about the Mayan culture, and how Millions of people vanished some 5,000 years ago. Which happens to coincide with the ancient Battle of Kurukestra which took place in India.
Also Srila Prabhupada has mentioned so many places in his books about how at one time, all the different parts of the world were ruled by one king.
…In the modern age people are under the impression that during the Vedic period or the prehistoric ages America and many other parts of the world had not been discovered, but that is not a fact. Pṛthu Mahārāja ruled over the world many thousands of years before the so-called prehistoric age, and it is clearly mentioned here that in those days not only were all the different parts of the world known, but they were ruled by one king, Mahārāja Pṛthu. (from purport to SB 4.21.12)
An interesting link ended up in my mailbox this morning which I share with all of you describing some of the common spiritual cultures on differing sides of the world.
Baffling Links to Ancient India: History is full of misnomers; one such term is the New World, as applied to the Americas. The landing of Columbus in 1492 undoubtedly created a new life on the continents, but it neither created nor discovered a new world. Many centuries ago Asian migrants had come to the western shore in substantial numbers. What if the popular idea that Tibetans and American Indians have much in common in terms of their spiritual culture is largely a result of another historical scenario?
What if Hindus and Hopis, Advantins and Aztecs, Tibetan Monks and Mayans were part of one world culture – a spiritual one?
Click on Link Links to Ancient India for more information
We also include a few brief excerpts form the Srimad Bhagavatam describing this one world culture which existed thousands of years ago.
Trita: One of the three sons of Prajāpati Gautama. He was the third son, and his other two brothers were known as Ekat and Dvita. All the brothers were great sages and strict followers of the principles of religion. By dint of severe penances they were promoted to Brahmaloka (the planet where Brahmājī lives). Once Trita Muni fell into a well. He was an organizing worker of many sacrifices, and as one of the great sages he also came to show respect to Bhīṣmajī at his deathbed. He was one of the seven sages in the Varuṇaloka. He hailed from the Western countries of the world. As such, most probably he belonged to the European countries. At that time the whole world was under one Vedic culture. (from purport SB 1.9.6-7)
…It is mentioned in the Mahābhārata (Ādi-parva 174.38), viz., the inhabitants of the province of the name Pulinda. This country was conquered by Bhīmasena and Sahadeva. The Greeks are known as Pulindas, and it is mentioned in the Vana-parva of Mahābhārata that the non-Vedic race of this part of the world would rule over the world. (from purport SB 2.4.18)
Sapta-dvīpa refers to the seven great islands or continents on the surface of the globe: (1) Asia, (2) Europe, (3) Africa, (4) North America, (5) South America, (6) Australia and (7) Oceania. In the modern age people are under the impression that during the Vedic period or the prehistoric ages America and many other parts of the world had not been discovered, but that is not a fact. Pṛthu Mahārāja ruled over the world many thousands of years before the so-called prehistoric age, and it is clearly mentioned here that in those days not only were all the different parts of the world known, but they were ruled by one king, Mahārāja Pṛthu. The country where Pṛthu Mahārāja resided must have been India because it is stated in the eleventh verse of this chapter that he lived in the tract of land between the rivers Ganges and Yamunā. This tract of land, which is called Brahmāvarta, consists of what is known in the modern age as portions of Punjab and northern India. It is clear that the kings of India once ruled all the world and that their culture was Vedic. (from purport SB 4.21.12)
Full text and purports
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Canto One, Chhapter 9, Text 6-7
parvato nārado dhaumyo
trito gṛtsamado ‘sitaḥ
kakṣīvān gautamo ‘triś ca
kauśiko ‘tha sudarśanaḥ
parvataḥ—Parvata Muni; nāradaḥ—Nārada Muni; dhaumyaḥ—Dhaumya; bhagavān—incarnation of Godhead; bādarāyaṇaḥ—Vyāsadeva; bṛhadaśvaḥ—Bṛhadaśva; bharadvājaḥ—Bharadvāja; sa-śiṣyaḥ—along with disciples; reṇukā-sutaḥ—Paraśurāma; vasiṣṭhaḥ—Vasiṣṭha; indrapramadaḥ—Indrapramada; tritaḥ—Trita; gṛtsamadaḥ—Gṛtsamada; asitaḥ—Asita; kakṣīvān—Kakṣīvān; gautamaḥ—Gautama; atriḥ—Atri; ca—and; kauśikaḥ—Kauśika; atha—as well as; sudarśanaḥ—Sudarśana.
All the sages like Parvata Muni, Nārada, Dhaumya, Vyāsa the incarnation of God, Bṛhadaśva, Bharadvāja and Paraśurāma and disciples, Vasiṣṭha, Indrapramada, Trita, Gṛtsamada, Asita, Kakṣīvān, Gautama, Atri, Kauśika and Sudarśana were present.
Parvata Muni: is considered to be one of the oldest sages. He is almost always a constant companion of Nārada Muni. They are also spacemen competent to travel in the air without the help of any material vehicle. Parvata Muni is also a devarṣi, or a great sage amongst the demigods, like Nārada. He was present along with Nārada at the sacrificial ceremony of Mahārāja Janamejaya, son of Mahārāja Parīkṣit. In this sacrifice all the snakes of the world were to be killed. Parvata Muni and Nārada Muni are called Gandharvas also because they can travel in the air singing the glories of the Lord. Since they can travel in the air, they observed Draupadī’s svayaṁvara ceremony (selecting of her own husband) from the air. Like Nārada Muni, Parvata Muni also used to visit the royal assembly in the heaven of King Indra. As a Gandharva, sometimes he visited the royal assembly of Kuvera, one of the important demigods. Both Nārada and Parvata were once in trouble with the daughter of Mahārāja Sṛñjaya. Mahārāja Sṛñjaya got the benediction of a son by Parvata Muni.
Nārada Muni: is inevitably associated with the narrations of the Purāṇas. He is described in the Bhāgavatam. In his previous life he was the son of a maidservant, but by good association with pure devotees he became enlightened in devotional service, and in the next life he became a perfect man comparable with himself only. In the Mahābhārata his name is mentioned in many places. He is the principle devarṣi, or the chief sage amongst the demigods. He is the son and disciple of Brahmājī, and from him the disciplic succession in the line of Brahmā has been spread. He initiated Prahlāda Mahārāja, Dhruva Mahārāja and many celebrated devotees of the Lord. He initiated even Vyāsadeva, the author of the Vedic literatures, and from Vyāsadeva, Madhvācārya was initiated, and thus the Madhva-sampradāya, in which the Gauḍīya-sampradāya is also included, has spread all over the universe. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu belonged to this Madhva-sampradāya; therefore, Brahmājī, Nārada, Vyāsa, down to Madhva, Caitanya and the Gosvāmīs all belonged to the same line of disciplic succession. Nāradajī has instructed many kings from time immemorial. In the Bhāgavatam we can see that he instructed Prahlāda Mahārāja while he was in the womb of his mother, and he instructed Vasudeva, father of Kṛṣṇa, as well as Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira.
Dhaumya: A great sage who practiced severe penances at Utkocaka Tīrtha and was appointed royal priest of the Pāṇḍava kings. He acted as the priest in many religious functions of the Pāṇḍavas (saṁskāra), and also each of the Pāṇḍavas was attended by him at the betrothal of Draupadī. He was present even during the exile of the Pāṇḍavas and used to advise them in circumstances when they were perplexed. He instructed them how to live incognito for one year, and his instructions were strictly followed by the Pāṇḍavas during that time. His name is mentioned also when the general funeral ceremony was performed after the Battle of Kurukṣetra. In the Anuṣāsana-parva of Mahābhārata (127.15-16), he gave religious instructions very elaborately to Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira. He was actually the right type of priest of a householder, for he could guide the Pāṇḍavas on the right path of religion. A priest is meant for guiding the householder progressively in the right path of āśrama-dharma, or the occupational duty of a particular caste. There is practically no difference between the family priest and the spiritual master. The sages, saints and brāhmaṇas were especially meant for such functions.
Bādarāyaṇa (Vyāsadeva): He is known as Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa-dvaipāyana, Dvaipāyana, Satyavatī-suta, Pārāśarya, Parāśarātmaja, Bādarāyaṇa, Vedavyāsa, etc. He was the son of Mahāmuni Parāśara in the womb of Satyavatī prior to her betrothal with Mahārāja Śantanu, the father of the great general Grandfather Bhīṣmadeva. He is a powerful incarnation of Nārāyaṇa, and he broadcasts the Vedic wisdom to the world. As such, Vyāsadeva is offered respects before one chants the Vedic literature, especially the Purāṇas. Śukadeva Gosvāmī was his son, and ṛṣis like Vaiśampāyana were his disciples for different branches of the Vedas. He is the author of the great epic Mahābhārata and the great transcendental literature Bhāgavatam. The Brahma-sūtras-the Vedānta-sūtras, or Bādarāyaṇa-sūtras-were compiled by him. Amongst sages he is the most respected author by dint of severe penances. When he wanted to record the great epic Mahābhārata for the welfare of all people in the age of Kali, he was feeling the necessity of a powerful writer who could take up his dictation. By the order of Brahmājī, Śrī Gaṇeśajī took up the charge of noting down the dictation on the condition that Vyāsadeva would not stop dictation for a moment. The Mahābhārata was thus compiled by the joint endeavor of Vyāsa and Gaṇeśa.
By the order of his mother, Satyavatī, who was later married to Mahārāja Śantanu, and by the request of Bhīṣmadeva, the eldest son of Mahārāja Śantanu by his first wife, the Ganges, he begot three brilliant sons, whose names are Dhṛtarāṣṭra, Pāṇḍu and Vidura. The Mahābhārata was compiled by Vyāsadeva after the Battle of Kurukṣetra and after the death of all the heroes of Mahābhārata. It was first spoken in the royal assembly of Mahārāja Janamejaya, the son of Mahārāja Parīkṣit.
Bṛhadaśva: An ancient sage who used to meet Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira now and then. First of all he met Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira at Kāmyavana. This sage narrated the history of Mahārāja Nala. There is another Bṛhadaśva, who is the son of the Ikṣvāku dynasty (Mahābhārata, Vana-parva 209.4-5)
Bharadvāja: He is one of the seven great ṛṣis and was present at the time of the birth ceremony of Arjuna. The powerful ṛṣi sometimes undertook severe penances on the shore of the Ganges, and his āśrama is still celebrated at Prayāgadhāma. It is learned that this ṛṣi, while taking bath in the Ganges, happened to meet Ghṛtacī, one of the beautiful society girls of heaven, and thus he discharged semen, which was kept and preserved in an earthen pot and from which Droṇa was born. So Droṇācārya is the son of Bharadvāja Muni. Others say that Bharadvāja the father of Droṇa is a different person from Maharṣi Bharadvāja. He was a great devotee of Brahmā. Once he approached Droṇācārya and requested him to stop the Battle of Kurukṣetra.
Paraśurāma, or Reṇukāsuta: He is the son of Maharṣi Jamadagni and Śrīmatī Reṇukā. Thus he is also known as Reṇukāsuta. He is one of the powerful incarnations of God, and he killed the kṣatriya community as a whole twenty-one times. With the blood of the kṣatriyas he pleased the souls of his forefathers. Later on he underwent severe penances at the Mahendra Parvata. After taking the whole earth from the kṣatriyas, he gave it in charity to Kaśyapa Muni. Paraśurāma instructed the Dhanur-veda, or the science of fighting, to Droṇācārya because he happened to be a brāhmaṇa. He was present during the coronation of Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, and he celebrated the function along with other great ṛṣis.
Paraśurāma is so old that he met both Rāma and Kṛṣṇa at different times. He fought with Rāma, but he accepted Kṛṣṇa as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He also praised Arjuna when he saw him with Kṛṣṇa. When Bhīṣma refused to marry Ambā, who wanted him to become her husband, Ambā met Paraśurāma, and by her request only, he asked Bhīṣmadeva to accept her as his wife. Bhīṣma refused to obey his order, although he was one of the spiritual masters of Bhīṣmadeva. Paraśurāma fought with Bhīṣmadeva when Bhīṣma neglected his warning. Both of them fought very severely, and at last Paraśurāma was pleased with Bhīṣma and gave him the benediction of becoming the greatest fighter in the world.
Vasiṣṭha: The great celebrated sage among the brāhmaṇas, well known as the Brahmarṣi Vasiṣṭhadeva. He is a prominent figure in both the Rāmāyaṇa and Mahābhārata periods. He celebrated the coronation ceremony of the Personality of Godhead Śrī Rāma. He was present also on the Battlefield of Kurukṣetra. He could approach all the higher and lower planets, and his name is also connected with the history of Hiraṇyakaśipu. There was a great tension between him and Viśvāmitra, who wanted his kāmadhenu, wish-fulfilling cow. Vasiṣṭha Muni refused to spare his kāmadhenu, and for this Viśvāmitra killed his one hundred sons. As a perfect brāhmaṇa he tolerated all the taunts of Viśvāmitra. Once he tried to commit suicide on account of Viśvāmitra’s torture, but all his attempts were unsuccessful. He jumped from a hill, but the stones on which he fell became a stack of cotton, and thus he was saved. He jumped into the ocean, but the waves washed him ashore. He jumped into the river, but the river also washed him ashore. Thus all his suicide attempts were unsuccessful. He is also one of the seven ṛṣis and husband of Arundhatī, the famous star.
Indrapramada: Another celebrated ṛṣi.
Trita: One of the three sons of Prajāpati Gautama. He was the third son, and his other two brothers were known as Ekat and Dvita. All the brothers were great sages and strict followers of the principles of religion. By dint of severe penances they were promoted to Brahmaloka (the planet where Brahmājī lives). Once Trita Muni fell into a well. He was an organizing worker of many sacrifices, and as one of the great sages he also came to show respect to Bhīṣmajī at his deathbed. He was one of the seven sages in the Varuṇaloka. He hailed from the Western countries of the world. As such, most probably he belonged to the European countries. At that time the whole world was under one Vedic culture.
Gṛtsamada: One of the sages of the heavenly kingdom. He was a close friend of Indra, the King of heaven, and was as great as Bṛhaspati. He used to visit the royal assembly of Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, and he also visited the place where Bhīṣmadeva breathed his last. Sometimes he explained the glories of Lord Śiva before Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira. He was the son of Vitahavya, and he resembled in features the body of Indra. Sometimes the enemies of Indra mistook him to be Indra and arrested him. He was a great scholar of the Ṛg-veda, and thus he was highly respected by the brāhmaṇa community. He lived a life of celibacy and was powerful in every respect.
Asita: There was a king of the same name, but herein the Asita mentioned is the Asita Devala Ṛṣi, a great powerful sage of the time. He explained to his father 1,500,000 verses from the Mahābhārata. He was one of the members in the snake sacrifice of Mahārāja Janamejaya. He was also present during the coronation ceremony of Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira along with other great ṛṣis. He also gave Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira instructions while he was on the Añjana Hill. He was also one of the devotees of Lord Śiva.
Kakṣīvān: One of the sons of Gautama Muni and the father of the great sage Candakausika. He was one of the members of Parliament of Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira.
Atri: Atri Muni was a great brāhmaṇa sage and was one of the mental sons of Brahmājī. Brahmājī is so powerful that simply by thinking of a son he can have it. These sons are known as mānasa-putras. Out of seven mānasa-putras of Brahmājī and out of the seven great brāhmaṇa sages, Atri was one. In his family the great Pracetās were also born. Atri Muni had two kṣatriya sons who became kings. King Arthama is one of them. He is counted as one of the twenty-one prajāpatis. His wife’s name was Anasūyā, and he helped Mahārāja Parīkṣit in his great sacrifices.
Kauśika: One of the permanent ṛṣi members in the royal assembly of Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira. He sometimes met Lord Kṛṣṇa. There are several other sages of the same name.
Sudarśana: This wheel which is accepted by the Personality of Godhead (Viṣṇu or Kṛṣṇa) as His personal weapon is the most powerful weapon, greater than the brahmāstras or similar other disastrous weapons. In some of the Vedic literatures it is said that Agnideva, the fire-god, presented this weapon to Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa, but factually this weapon is eternally carried by the Lord. Agnideva presented this weapon to Kṛṣṇa in the same way that Rukmiṇī was given by Mahārāja Rukma to the Lord. The Lord accepts such presentations from His devotees, even though such presentations are eternally His property. There is an elaborate description of this weapon in the Ādi-parva of the Mahābhārata. Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa used this weapon to kill Śiśupāla, a rival of the Lord. He also killed Śālva by this weapon, and sometimes He wanted His friend Arjuna to use it to kill his enemies (Mahābhārata, Virāṭa-parva 56.3).
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Canto Two Chapter 4, Text 18
ābhīra-śumbhā yavanāḥ khasādayaḥ
ye ‘nye ca pāpā yad-apāśrayāśrayāḥ
śudhyanti tasmai prabhaviṣṇave namaḥ
kirāta—a province of old Bhārata; hūṇa—part of Germany and Russia; āndhra—a province of southern India; pulinda—the Greeks; pulkaśāḥ—another province; ābhīra—part of old Sind; śumbhāḥ—another province; yavanāḥ—the Turks; khasa-ādayaḥ—the Mongolian province; ye—even those; anye—others; ca—also; pāpāḥ—addicted to sinful acts; yat—whose; apāśraya-āśrayāḥ—having taken shelter of the devotees of the Lord; śudhyanti—at once purified; tasmai—unto Him; prabhaviṣṇave—unto the powerful Viṣṇu; namaḥ—my respectful obeisances.
Kirāta, Hūṇa, Āndhra, Pulinda, Pulkaśa, Ābhīra, Śumbha, Yavana, members of the Khasa races and even others addicted to sinful acts can be purified by taking shelter of the devotees of the Lord, due to His being the supreme power. I beg to offer my respectful obeisances unto Him.
Kirāta: A province of old Bhārata-varṣa mentioned in the Bhīṣma-parva of Mahābhārata. Generally the Kirātas are known as the aboriginal tribes of India, and in modern days the Santal Parganas in Bihar and Chota Nagpur might comprise the old province named Kirāta.
Hūṇa: The area of East Germany and part of Russia is known as the province of the Hūṇas. Accordingly, sometimes a kind of hill tribe is known as the Hūṇas.
Āndhra: A province in southern India mentioned in the Bhīṣma-parva of Mahābhārata. It is still extant under the same name.
Pulinda: It is mentioned in the Mahābhārata (Ādi-parva 174.38), viz., the inhabitants of the province of the name Pulinda. This country was conquered by Bhīmasena and Sahadeva. The Greeks are known as Pulindas, and it is mentioned in the Vana-parva of Mahābhārata that the non-Vedic race of this part of the world would rule over the world. This Pulinda province was also one of the provinces of Bhārata, and the inhabitants were classified amongst the kṣatriya kings. But later on, due to their giving up the brahminical culture, they were mentioned as mlecchas (just as those who are not followers of the Islamic culture are called kafirs and those who are not followers of the Christian culture are called heathens).
Ābhīra: This name also appears in the Mahābhārata, both in the Sabhā-parva and Bhīṣma-parva. It is mentioned that this province was situated on the River Sarasvatī in Sind. The modern Sind province formerly extended on the other side of the Arabian Sea, and all the inhabitants of that province were known as the Ābhīras. They were under the domination of Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, and according to the statements of Mārkaṇḍeya the mlecchas of this part of the world would also rule over Bhārata. Later on this proved to be true, as in the case of the Pulindas. On behalf of the Pulindas, Alexander the Great conquered India, and on behalf of the Ābhīras, Muhammad Ghori conquered India. These Ābhīras were also formerly kṣatriyas within the brahminical culture, but they gave up the connection. The kṣatriyas who were afraid of Paraśurāma and had hidden themselves in the Caucasian hilly regions later on became known as the Ābhīras, and the place they inhabited was known as Ābhīradeśa.
Śumbhas or Kaṅkas: The inhabitants of the Kaṅka province of old Bhārata, mentioned in the Mahābhārata.
Yavanas: Yavana was the name of one of the sons of Mahārāja Yayāti who was given the part of the world known as Turkey to rule. Therefore the Turks are Yavanas due to being descendants of Mahārāja Yavana. The Yavanas were therefore kṣatriyas, and later on, by giving up the brahminical culture, they became mleccha-yavanas. Descriptions of the Yavanas are in the Mahābhārata (Ādi-parva 85.34). Another prince called Turvasu was also known as Yavana, and his country was conquered by Sahadeva, one of the Pāṇḍavas. The western Yavana joined with Duryodhana in the Battle of Kurukṣetra under the pressure of Karṇa. It is also foretold that these Yavanas also would conquer India, and it proved to be true.
Khasa: The inhabitants of the Khasadeśa are mentioned in the Mahābhārata (Droṇa-parva). Those who have a stunted growth of hair on the upper lip are generally called Khasas. As such, the Khasa are the Mongolians, the Chinese and others who are so designated.
The above-mentioned historical names are different nations of the world. Even those who are constantly engaged in sinful acts are all corrigible to the standard of perfect human beings if they take shelter of the devotees of the Lord. Jesus Christ and Muhammad, two powerful devotees of the Lord, have done tremendous service on behalf of the Lord on the surface of the globe. And from the version of Śrīla Śukadeva Gosvāmī it appears that instead of running a godless civilization in the present context of the world situation, if the leadership of world affairs is entrusted to the devotees of the Lord, for which a worldwide organization under the name and style of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness has already been started, then by the grace of the Almighty Lord there can be a thorough change of heart in human beings all over the world because the devotees of the Lord are able authorities to effect such a change by purifying the dust-worn minds of the people in general. The politicians of the world may remain in their respective positions because the pure devotees of the Lord are not interested in political leadership or diplomatic implications. The devotees are interested only in seeing that the people in general are not misguided by political propaganda and in seeing that the valuable life of a human being is not spoiled in following a type of civilization which is ultimately doomed. If the politicians, therefore, would be guided by the good counsel of the devotees, then certainly there would be a great change in the world situation by the purifying propaganda of the devotees, as shown by Lord Caitanya. As Śukadeva Gosvāmī began his prayer by discussing the word yat-kīrtanam, so also Lord Caitanya recommended that simply by glorifying the Lord’s holy name, a tremendous change of heart can take place by which the complete misunderstanding between the human nations created by politicians can at once be extinguished. And after the extinction of the fire of misunderstanding, other profits will follow. The destination is to go back home, back to Godhead, as we have several times discussed in these pages.
According to the cult of devotion, generally known as the Vaiṣṇava cult, there is no bar against anyone’s advancing in the matter of God realization. A Vaiṣṇava is powerful enough to turn into a Vaiṣṇava even the Kirāta, etc., as above mentioned. In the Bhagavad-gītā (9.32) it is said by the Lord that there is no bar to becoming a devotee of the Lord (even for those who are lowborn, or women, śūdras or vaiśyas), and by becoming a devotee everyone is eligible to return home, back to Godhead. The only qualification is that one take shelter of a pure devotee of the Lord who has thorough knowledge in the transcendental science of Kṛṣṇa (Bhagavad-gītā and Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam). Anyone from any part of the world who becomes well conversant in the science of Kṛṣṇa becomes a pure devotee and a spiritual master for the general mass of people and may reclaim them by purification of heart. Though a person be even the most sinful man, he can at once be purified by systematic contact with a pure Vaiṣṇava. A Vaiṣṇava, therefore, can accept a bona fide disciple from any part of the world without any consideration of caste and creed and promote him by regulative principles to the status of a pure Vaiṣṇava who is transcendental to brahminical culture. The system of caste, or varṇāśrama-dharma, is no longer regular even amongst the so-called followers of the system. Nor is it now possible to reestablish the institutional function in the present context of social, political and economic revolution. Without any reference to the particular custom of a country, one can be accepted to the Vaiṣṇava cult spiritually, and there is no hindrance in the transcendental process. So by the order of Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, the cult of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam or the Bhagavad-gītā can be preached all over the world, reclaiming all persons willing to accept the transcendental cult. Such cultural propaganda by the devotees will certainly be accepted by all persons who are reasonable and inquisitive, without any particular bias for the custom of the country. The Vaiṣṇava never accepts another Vaiṣṇava on the basis of birthright, just as he never thinks of the Deity of the Lord in a temple as an idol. And to remove all doubts in this connection, Śrīla Śukadeva Gosvāmī has invoked the blessings of the Lord, who is all-powerful (prabhaviṣṇave namaḥ). As the all-powerful Lord accepts the humble service of His devotee in devotional activities of the arcana, His form as the worshipable Deity in the temple, similarly the body of a pure Vaiṣṇava changes transcendentally at once when he gives himself up to the service of the Lord and is trained by a qualified Vaiṣṇava. The injunction of Vaiṣṇava regulation in this connection runs as follows: arcye viṣṇau śilā-dhīr guruṣu nara-matir vaiṣṇave jāti-buddhiḥ śrī-viṣṇor nāmni śabda-sāmānya-buddhiḥ, etc. “One should not consider the Deity of the Lord as worshiped in the temple to be an idol, nor should one consider the authorized spiritual master an ordinary man. Nor should one consider a pure Vaiṣṇava to belong to a particular caste, etc.” (Padma Purāṇa)
The conclusion is that the Lord, being all-powerful, can, under any and every circumstance, accept anyone from any part of the world, either personally or through His bona fide manifestation as the spiritual master. Lord Caitanya accepted many devotees from communities other than the varṇāśramites, and He Himself declared, to teach us, that He does not belong to any caste or social order of life, but that He is the eternal servant of the servant of the Lord who maintains the damsels of Vṛndāvana (Lord Kṛṣṇa) [Cc. Madhya 13.80]. That is the way of self-realization.