The Srimad Bhagavatam

It is said that the four Kumaras - the original sons of Brahma, who preferred self-realisation to creation - told the Sage Narada all the three ingredients of bhakti, vairagya and jnana (devotion, dispassion and wisdom) spontaneously arises in he who recites it.

The Sage Narada is then said to have asked them why a perusal of the Vedas, Upanishads and the Bhagavad Gita do not result in such an outcome, they pointed out that as long as the essence cannot be separated from the appearance, (similar to the extraction of butter from milk) no benefit is possible. The Bhagavata is the spiritual butter that has been churned from the milk of the Vedas to assist those "who are pure in heart, free from malice and are keen to hear it. It frees them from the triple affliction of bodily diseases, natural calamities and distress caused by the action of others."

In the words of Suta: "The great Siddha Vedavyasa composed this blessed Purana which is equal to the Veda and which recounts the glory of the Lord and imparted it to his self-realised son, Sukadeva, who recited it to King Parikshit and the assembled Rishis on the banks of the Ganga in my presence. The Dark Age of Kali having begun and Sri Krishna being no longer in the world to teach the Truth in person, this Purana which contains the quintessence of the Veda and the epics and which shines by its spiritual radiance like the sun, has been given for the benefit of those who are seeking the light of Truth in the darkness of ignorance."

Lord Brahma then declared to Narada: "The primal Purusha, the Unborn, creates, maintains and destroys Himself time after time, though in Himself. He is ever pure, indestructible, attributeless, changeless, perfect and one without the second. Sages realise Him only when they succeed in completely subduing their body, senses and mind. But He disappears from the view of those who attempt to reach Him by sophisticated reasoning."

"This is the Bhagavata which the Lord was pleased to teach me. Do amplify it in a way which will create devotion for Him. He who will recite it and he who will hear it with faith, will never be deluded by maya or cosmic illusion."

Among the rivers, it is the Ganges, among the trinity, it is Vishnu and among places of pilgrimage, it is Kashi. It is authentic liberation.

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