TEXT 169
tasyaiva hetoḥ prayateta kovido
na labhyate yad bhramatām upary adhaḥ
tal labhyate duḥkhavad anyataḥ sukhaṁ
kālena sarvatra gabhīra-raṁhasā
tasya eva—for that; hetoḥ—reason; prayateta—should endeavor; kovidaḥ—one who is learned and intelligent; na—not; labhyate—is achieved; yat—that which; bhramatām—of those wandering; upari adhaḥ—up and down; tat—that; labhyate—is achieved; duḥkhavat—exactly like unhappiness or distress; anyataḥ—from other reasons (one's past actions); sukham—happiness; kālena—by time; sarvatra—everywhere; gabhīra—insurmountable; raṁhasā—having force.
" 'The transcendental position cannot be attained by wandering up and down from Brahmaloka and Satyaloka to Pātālaloka. If one is actually intelligent and learned, he should endeavor for that rare transcendental position. Whatever material happiness is available within the fourteen worlds is attained by the force of time, just as one attains distress in due course of time. Since these are not attained by spiritual consciousness, one should not try for them.'
This verse was spoken by Nārada Muni in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (1.5.18). Nārada Muni was speaking to Vyāsadeva, who was morose even after he had compiled all Vedic literatures. In this connection, Nārada Muni advised Śrīla Vyāsadeva to attain devotional service.

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