dadhyaṅṅ ātharvaṇas tanum
pare bhagavati brahmaṇy
ātmānaṁ sannayañ jahau
śrī-bādarāyaṇiḥ uvāca—Śrī Śukadeva Gosvāmī said; evam—thus; kṛta-vyavasitaḥ—making certain of what to do (in giving his body to the demigods); dadhyaṅ—Dadhīci Muni; ātharvaṇaḥ—the son of Atharvā; tanum—his body; pare—to the Supreme; bhagavati—Personality of Godhead; brahmaṇi—the Supreme Brahman; ātmānam—himself. the spirit soul; sannayan—offering; jahau—gave up.
Śrī Śukadeva Gosvāmī said: Dadhīci Muni, the son of Atharvā, thus resolved to give his body to the service of the demigods. He placed himself, the spirit soul, at the lotus feet of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and in this way gave up his gross material body made of five elements.
As indicated by the words pare bhagavati brahmaṇy ātmānaṁ sannayan, Dadhīci placed himself, as spirit soul, at the lotus feet of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. In this regard, one may refer to the incident of Dhṛtarāṣṭra’s leaving his body, as described in the First Canto of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (1.13.55). Dhṛtarāṣṭra analytically divided his gross material body into the five different elements of which it was made—earth, water, fire, air and ether—and distributed them to the different reservoirs of these elements; in other words, he merged these five elements into the original mahat-tattva. By identifying his material conception of life, he gradually separated his spirit soul from material connections and placed himself at the lotus feet of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The example given in this connection is that when an earthen pot is broken, the small portion of the sky within the pot is united with the large sky outside the pot. Māyāvādī philosophers misunderstand this description of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. Therefore Śrī Rāmānuja Svāmī, in his book Vedānta-tattva-sāra, has described that this merging of the soul means that after separating himself from the material body made of eight elements—earth, water, fire, air, ether, false ego, mind and intelligence—the individual soul engages himself in devotional service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead in His eternal form (īśvaraḥ paramaḥ kṛṣṇaḥ sac-cid-ānanda-vigrahaḥ/ anādir ādir govindaḥ sarva-kāraṇa-kāraṇam [Bs. 5.1]). The material cause of the material elements absorbs the material body, and the spiritual soul assumes its original position. As described by Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, jīvera ‘svarūpa’ haya—kṛṣṇera ‘nitya-dāsa’: [Cc. Madhya 20.108] the constitutional position of the living entity is that he is the eternal servant of Kṛṣṇa. When one overcomes the material body through cultivation of spiritual knowledge and devotional service, one can revive his own position and thus engage in the service of the Lord.
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