Srimad-Bhagavatam, First CantoA.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
Srimad-Bhagavatam, an epic philosophical and literary classic, holds a prominent position in India’s voluminous written wisdom. The timeless wisdom of India is expressed in the Vedas, ancient Sanskrit texts that touches upon all fields of human knowledge. Originally preserved through oral tradition, the Vedas were first put into writing by Srila Vyasadeva, the “literary incarnation of God.” After compiling the Vedas, Srila Vyasadeva was inspired by his spiritual master to present their profound essence in the form of Srimad-Bhagavatam. Known as “the ripened fruit of the tree of Vedic literature,” Srimad-Bhagavatam is the most complete and authoritative exposition of Vedic knowledge.
After writing the Bhagavatam, Vyasa taught it to his son, Shukadeva Goswami, who later spoke the Bhagavatam to Maharaja Parikshit in an assembly of sages on the bank of the sacred Ganges River. Although Maharaja Parikshit was a great rajarshi (saintly king) and the emperor of the world, when he received notice of his death seven days in advance, he renounced his entire kingdom and retired to the bank of the Ganges to seek spiritual enlightenment. The questions of King Parikshit and Shukadeva Goswami’s illuminating answers, concerning everything from the nature of the self to the origin of the universe, are the basis of Srimad-Bhagavatam.
This edition of Bhagavatam is the only complete English translation with an elaborate and scholarly commentary, and it is the first edition widely available to the English-reading public. This work is the product of the scholarly and devotional effort of His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, the world’s most distinguished teacher of Indian religious and philosophical thought. His Sanskrit scholarship and intimate familiarity with Vedic culture combine to reveal to the West a magnificent exposition of this important classic.