atha ha bhagavan rsabhadevah sva-varsam karma-ksetram anumanyamanah pradarsita-gurukula-vaso labdha-varair gurubhir anujnato grhamedhinam dharman anusiksamano jayantyam indra-dattayam ubhaya-laksanam karma samamnayamnatam abhiyunjann atmajanam atma-samananam satam janayam asa.
atha—thereupon (after the departure of his father); ha—indeed; bhagavan—the Supreme Personality of Godhead; rsabha-devah—Rsabhadeva; sva—His own; varsam—kingdom; karma-ksetram—the field of activities; anumanyamanah—accepting as; pradarsita—shown as an example; guru-kula-vasah—lived at the gurukula; labdha—having achieved; varaih—gifts; gurubhih—by the spiritual masters; anujnatah—being ordered; grha-medhinam—of the householders; dharman—duties; anusiksamanah—teaching by example; jayantyam—in His wife, Jayanti; indra-dattayam—offered by Lord Indra; ubhaya-laksanam—of both types; karma—activities; samamnayamnatam—mentioned in the scriptures; abhiyunjan—performing; atmajanam—sons; atma-samananam—exactly like Himself; satam—one hundred; janayam asa—begot.
After Nabhi Maharaja departed for Badarikasrama, the Supreme Lord, Rsabhadeva, understood that His kingdom was His field of activities. He therefore showed Himself as an example and taught the duties of a householder by first accepting brahmacarya under the direction of spiritual masters. He also went to live at the spiritual masters’ place, gurukula. After His education was finished, He gave gifts (guru-daksina) to His spiritual masters and then accepted the life of a householder. He took a wife named Jayanti and begot one hundred sons who were as powerful and qualified as He Himself. His wife Jayanti had been offered to Him by Indra, the King of heaven. Rsabhadeva and Jayanti performed householder life in an exemplary way, carrying out ritualistic activities ordained by the sruti and smrti sastra.
Being an incarnation of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Rsabhadeva had nothing to do with material affairs. As stated in Bhagavad-gita, paritranaya sadhunam vinasaya ca duskrtam: [Bg. 4.8] the purpose of an incarnation is to liberate His devotees and to stop the demoniac activities of nondevotees. These are the two functions of the Supreme Lord when He incarnates. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu has said that in order to preach, one must live a practical life and show people how to do things. Apani acari’ bhakti sikhaimu sabare. One cannot teach others unless he behaves the same way himself. Rsabhadeva was an ideal king, and He took His education in the gurukula, although He was already educated because the Supreme Lord is omniscient. Although Rsabhadeva had nothing to learn from gurukula, He went there just to teach the people in general how to take an education from the right source, from Vedic teachers. He then entered householder life and lived according to the principles of Vedic knowledge—sruti and smrti. In his Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu (1.2.10) Srila Rupa Gosvami, quoting the Skanda Purana, states:
“Devotional service of the Lord that ignores the authorized Vedic literatures like the Upanisads, Puranas and Narada-pancaratra is simply an unnecessary disturbance in society.” Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu 1.2.101
Human society must follow the instructions received from sruti and smrti, Vedic literature. Practically applied in life this is worship of the Supreme Personality of Godhead according to the pancaratrika-vidhi. Every human being must advance his spiritual life and at the end return home, back to Godhead. Maharaja Rsabhadeva strictly followed all these principles. He remained an ideal grhastha and taught His sons how to become perfect in spiritual life. These are some examples of how He ruled the earth and completed His mission as an incarnation.
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