TEXT 22
pṛthur uvāca
bhoḥ sūta he māgadha saumya vandiḹ
loke ’dhunāspaṣṭa-guṇasya me syāt
kim āśrayo me stava eṣa yojyatāṁ
mā mayy abhūvan vitathā giro vaḥ
SYNONYMS
pṛthuḥ uvāca—King Pṛthu said; bhoḥ sūta—O sūta; he māgadha—O māgadha; saumya—gentle; vandin—O devotee offering prayers; loke—in this world; adhunā—just now; aspaṣṭa—not distinct; guṇasya—whose qualities; me—of me; syāt—there may be; kim—why; āśrayaḥ—shelter; me—of me; stavaḥ—praise; eṣaḥ—this; yojyatām—may be applied; —never; mayi—unto me; abhūvan—were; vitathāḥ—in vain; giraḥ—words; vaḥ—your.
TRANSLATION
King Pṛthu said: O gentle sūta, māgadha and other devotee offering prayers, the qualities of which you have spoken are not distinct in me. Why then should you praise me for all these qualities when I do not shelter these features? I do not wish for these words meant for me to go in vain, but it is better that they be offered to someone else.
PURPORT
The prayers and praises by the sūta, māgadha and vandī all explained the godly qualities of Mahārāja Pṛthu, for he was a śaktyāveśa incarnation of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Because the qualities were not yet manifest, however, King Pṛthu very humbly asked why the devotees should praise him with such exalted words. He did not want anyone to offer him prayers or glorify him unless he possessed the real qualities of which they spoke. The offering of prayers was certainly appropriate, for he was an incarnation of Godhead, but he warned that one should not be accepted as an incarnation of the Personality of Godhead without having the godly qualities. At the present moment there are many so-called incarnations of the Personality of Godhead, but these are merely fools and rascals whom people accept as incarnations of God although they have no godly qualities. King Pṛthu desired that his real characteristics in the future might justify such words of praise. Although there was no fault in the prayers offered, Pṛthu Mahārāja indicated that such prayers should not be offered to an unfit person who pretends to be an incarnation of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.

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