param pradhanam purusam mahantam
kalam kavim tri-vrtam loka-palam
svacchanda-saktim kapilam prapadye
param—transcendental; pradhanam—supreme; purusam—person; mahantam—who is the origin of the material world; kalam—who is time; kavim—fully cognizant; tri-vrtam—three modes of material nature; loka-palam—who is the maintainer of all the universes; atma—in Himself; anubhutya—by internal potency; anugata—dissolved; prapancam—whose material manifestations; sva-chanda—independently; saktim—who is powerful; kapilam—to Lord Kapila; prapadye—I surrender.
I surrender unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead, descended in the form of Kapila, who is independently powerful and transcendental, who is the Supreme Person and the Lord of the sum total of matter and the element of time, who is the fully cognizant maintainer of all the universes under the three modes of material nature, and who absorbs the material manifestations after their dissolution.
The six opulences—wealth, strength, fame, beauty, knowledge and renunciation—are indicated here by Kardama Muni, who addresses Kapila Muni, his son, as param. The word param is used in the beginning of Srimad-Bhagavatam, in the phrase param satyam, to refer to the summum bonum, or the Supreme Personality of Godhead. param is explained further by the next word, pradhanam, which means the chief, the origin, the source of everything—sarva-karana-karanam [Bs. 5.1]—the cause of all causes. The Supreme Personality of Godhead is not formless; He is purusam, or the enjoyer, the original person. He is the time element and is all-cognizant. He knows everything—past, present and future—as confirmed in Bhagavad-gita. The Lord says, “I know everything—present, past and future—in every corner of the universe.” The material world, which is moving under the spell of the three modes of nature, is also a manifestation of His energy. parasya saktir vividhaiva sruyate: everything that we see is an interaction of His energies (Svetasvatara Upanisad 6.8). parasya brahmanah saktis tathedam akhilam jagat. This is the version of the Visnu Purana. We can understand that whatever we see is an interaction of the three modes of material nature, but actually it is all an interaction of the Lord’s energy. Loka-palam: He is actually the maintainer of all living entities. Nityo nityanam: He is the chief of all living entities; He is one, but He maintains many, many living entities. God maintains all other living entities, but no one can maintain God. That is His svacchanda-sakti; He is not dependent on others. Someone may call himself independent, but he is still dependent on someone higher. The Personality of Godhead, however, is absolute; there is no one higher than or equal to Him.
Kapila Muni appeared as the son of Kardama Muni, but because Kapila is an incarnation of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Kardama Muni offered respectful obeisances unto Him with full surrender. Another word in this verse is very important: atmanubhutyanugata-prapancam. The Lord descends either as Kapila or Rama, Nrsimha or Varaha, and whatever forms He assumes in the material world are all manifestations of His own personal internal energy. They are never forms of the material energy. The ordinary living entities who are manifested in this material world have bodies created by the material energy, but when Krsna or any one of His expansions or parts of the expansions descends on this material world, although He appears to have a material body, His body is not material. He always has a transcendental body. But fools and rascals, who are called mudhas, consider Him one of them, and therefore they deride Him. They refuse to accept Krsna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead because they cannot understand Him. In Bhagavad-gita Krsna says, avajananti mam mudhah: “Those who are rascals and fools deride Me.” When God descends in a form, this does not mean that He assumes His form with the help of the material energy. He manifests His spiritual form as He exists in His spiritual kingdom.

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