PRAHLAD PLEASES NARAYAN BY DEVOTION
March 17, 2001
Louisville, Kentucky

In Swami Ni Vato 1/3, Gunatitanand Swami explains, "Prahlad fought with Narayan (God) for many days, but could not conquer Him. Then Narayan told Prahlad, 'I cannot be defeated by fighting; to win over Me, there is only one method: to sing My praise with your tongue, to keep Me in your mind, and to hold My divine image in your vision - in this manner, incessantly remember Me.'" Given in Swami Ni Vato 5/322, Prahlad unsuccessfully fought with Nara-Narayan for 10 thousand years; but per Naradji's instruction, by devotion, he won in just 6 months.

After the Narsinh incarnation of Lord Vishnu killed the demon Hiranyakashyap, [given in Bhagavat 7/10:] Prahlad was blessed to be the king of the demons until the end of the manvantara.

Once, when Chyavan Rushi went to bathe in a lake, some demons captured him and took him to Vaasukinaag, the serpent king of the netherworld. Due to his prayers, the serpent's deadly poison had no effect on Chyavan Rushi. However, Chyavan Rushi was unable to free from Vaasukinaag's grip. When Prahlad saw Chyavan Rushi, he made a deal that if he was allowed to accompany the sage on a pilgrimage, the sage would be released. (Prahlad, though a staunch devotee of Lord Vishnu, was born into an asura (demon) family. Because of this, he was unable to visit the holy places of Mrutyulok.)

Chyavan Rushi happily agreed to go on the pilgrimage. During their travels, Chyavan Rushi and Prahlad arrived at Badrikashram where they saw two saints, Nara and Narayan. Seeing Narayan doing penance while holding a bow and arrow, Prahlad inquired the need for weapons. Narayan responded, "To kill demons like you!" (Narayan responded in this way to remove Prahlad's remaining impurity. Otherwise, Prahlad was a great devotee of Lord Vishnu who recieved divine knowledge from Naradji while in the womb of his mother, Kayadhu.)

Upon hearing Narayan's statement, Prahlad became angry and challenged Narayan to a fight, thus forgetting his original purpose of coming as a pilgrim. The fight continued for 10 thousand years, but none of Prahlad's methods could even come close to defeating Narayan. Finally exhausted, Prahlad realized the identity of Narayan and prayed to him for forgiveness. By singing Narayan's praises with the tongue, listening to Narayan with the ears, etc. Prahlad became totally pure. Thus, in 6 months, Prahlad was able to earn Narayan's grace.

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