TEXT 17
matr-bhaktih para-strisu
patnyam ardha ivatmanah
prajasu pitrvat snigdhah
kinkaro brahma-vadinam
SYNONYMS
matr-bhaktih—as respectful as one is to his mother; para-strisu—to other women; patnyam—to his own wife; ardhah—half; iva—like; atmanah—of his body; prajasu—unto the citizens; pitr-vat—like a father; snigdhah—affectionate; kinkarah—servant; brahma-vadinam—of the devotees who preach the glories of the Lord.
TRANSLATION
The King will respect all women as if they were his own mother, and he will treat his own wife as the other half of his body. He will be just like an affectionate father to his citizens, and he will treat himself as the most obedient servant of the devotees, who always preach the glories of the Lord.
PURPORT
A learned man treats all women except his wife as his mother, looks on othersí property as garbage in the street, and treats others as he would treat his own self. These are the symptoms of a learned person as described by Canakya Pandita. This should be the standard for education. Education does not mean having academic degrees only. One should execute what he has learned in his personal life. These learned characteristics were verily manifest in the life of King Prthu. Although he was the king, he treated himself as a servant of the Lordís devotees. According to Vedic etiquette, if a devotee came to a kingís palace, the king would immediately offer his own seat to him. The word brahma-vadinam is very significant. Brahma-vadi refers to the devotees of the Lord. Brahman, Paramatma and Bhagavan are different terms for the Supreme Brahman, and the Supreme Brahman is Lord Krsna. This is accepted in Bhagavad-gita (10.12) by Arjuna (param brahma param dhama). Thus the word brahma-vadinam refers to the devotees of the Lord. The state should always serve the devotees of the Lord, and the ideal state should conduct itself according to the instructions of the devotee. Because King Prthu followed this principle, he is highly praised.

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