From the Jacket
The volume presents, for the first time in English language, the translation, based on devotion to our
Lord Sri Krishna (bhakti), bringing out, from the original Sanskrit text, the “bhavartha” (meaning of the
innerspirit and underlying loving sentiments, with which, this treatise has been written), of the
monumental commentary Sri Subodhini, on the Maha Bhagavata Purana, by Mahaprabhu Sri
Vallabhacharya (c 1479 – c 1531).
Shri Vallabhacharya’s Sri Subodhini is available only for the 1st, 2nd 3rd; 10th and for 4
chapters and 2 verses of chapter 5 of 11th canto. Sri Subodhini is considered as the most detailed
commentary, among all the available commentaries of Sri Bhagavatam.
In this volume 7 chapters of the canto III (Chapters 27 to 33) are dealt with the original verse of Sri
Bhagavatam, it’s English Meaning, The text of Sri Subodhini in Sanskrit and it’s English Meaning.
Wherever necessary, the Commentaries / Explanations given of Shri Gosainji (Shri Vittalnatha) Shri
Vallabhji, Shri Laloo Bhatji and Shri Purushotamji have also have been added.
The 7 Chapters, respectively, deal with (1) The “Divine Nature of “Purusha” (Primordial
Lord) and the “Way” to realize Him (2) The Yoga of meditation on the divine form of our Lord and it’s
Spiritual steps (Saadhan) (3) The description of the nature and form of “Kaala” (Time) by Lord
Kapiladeva, with a view to enable his mother Devahooti to attain “Total detachment” (Vairaagyam) (4)
The sorrow of “Attached” householders, caused by the factor of “Time” (5) The “Entry of the Jeeva”,
into the stomach of his mother, and the song of “Praise”, sung by this “Jeeva”, on our Lord (6) The
duties of an “Ideal” householder and (7) The “going away” of Lord Kapiladeva, and the “Liberation”
(Mukthi) of mother Devahooti.
Born in a village, founded by Adi Shankracharya, as the son of very devout parents, the late T.K.
Viswanatha Iyer and Ranganayaki Ammal, Ramanan was initiated into the study of the Vedas, the
Upanishads, Puranas, the Gita, Sanskrit treatises and the Sacred Chantings from the age of 5.
His initiation into the path of Bhakti was blessed by his Acharya and Guru, Shri Ubhaya
Vedanta Srirangam Sampath Kumara Swami, who is 77 now and is a symbol of our Lord’s love and
compassion. He is honoured and loved by everyone, as a noble Saint of Shri Ramanuja Sampradaya.
Ramanan says “if ever there is a faint and feeble remembrance of our Lord, in my mind, it is
entirely due to the Grace of my Guru and his prayers to our Lord Shri Laxmi Narayana”
Arising out of a chance meeting with one of the greatest saints of our times, Shri Shyam
Manohar Goswamijee, a direct descendant of Shri Mahaprabhu Vallabhacharya, becoming the recipient
of His love, Grace and Compassion, Ramanan was inspired to attempt writing this translation into
English of the monumental commentary of Shri Subodhini, by Mahaprabhu Shri Vallabhacharya, which
in the words of Srimad Andavan of Srirangam, a noble and most loving Saint of the Ramanuja
Sampradaya “cannot be fully and truly translated, into any other language, as Shri Vallabhacharya had the
highest love for Lord Krishna”
Hence, at best, this translation, in the words of Ramanan “is a humble attempt to becoming
deserving to get the Grace of our Lord Shri Krishna, through the Blessings and Grace of my Gurudeva
Shri Ubhaya Vedanta Srirangam Sampath Kumara Swamin, Shri Shyam Manohar Goswamijee, Srimad
Andavan of Srirangam and all Devotees and Bhaktas of our Lord”
Blessings from Parama Poojya Shri Goswami Shyam Majoharji Maharaj
The sacred Shree Maha Bhagavata Purana, is considered as the most revered “King” among the holy
scriptures, unanimously accepted and respected, by the followers of Shri Shankara, Shri Ramanuja, Shri
Madhwa, Shri Nimbarka and our Shri Mahaprabhu Vallabhacharya, as being helpful, for the meditation
and contemplation of the Upanishadic Truth of the Supreme Para Brahman and also for the hearing,
chanting, singing and remembering the sacred Divine Truth and Principle of our Lord and His Divine
Leelas, as explained in the Puranas.
The Supreme Para Brahman, explained in the Upanishads, regarded as the creator, sustainer,
destroyer (withdrawer) and also as the giver of liberation, is described in the Maha Bhagavata Purana, as
the Supreme Lord and Shree Bhagavan, who enacts, His Divine Leelas of creation of the Primordial
elements and it’s subsequent forms (in endless permutation and combination) in this universe, and also
provides for the various functions such as the continuity of existence, it’s nourishment, fulfillment of
desires and wants/requirements, changing of aeons/times, enacting His Divine Leelas constituting the
Divine stories about these Leelas, blessing the devotee with pure and total devotion (NIRODHA) and
finally causing the “liberation” (MOKSHA) of His devotees. In other words, the Supreme Para Brahman
described in the Upanishads. Is the same Lord or Bhagavan Shri Purushottama, as explained in this Maha
Our Shri Mahaprabhu Vallabhacharya has revered and accepted this Maha Bhagavata Purana, as
the ultimate proof and evidence, which could remove all the doubts, that may arise, while one is
engaged, in the interpretation of the Vedas, the Smritis and the Brahmasutras. Our Mahaprabhuji has also
desired, that the interpretation of the true inner-meaning of the Vedas should be done as per the
directions and exposition given by our Lord Shri Krishna, in the Bhagavad Gita, which in turn, should be
interpreted as per the inner meaning of the Brahmasutras. Shri Mahaprabhu then specified, that the
Brahmasutras Shri Mahaprabhu then specified, that the Brahmasutras should be interpreted as per the
directions and teachings contained in this Maha Bhagavata Purana.
With another view in his mind, our Shri Mahaprabhu had written the commentary on the
Brahmasutras and the Sutras of Jaimini, as propounding the true meaning of the Vedas. Unfortunately
only a very small part of these treatises are available now. In the same way, he had also written the
commentary on Shri Bhagavatam, which determines the true meaning of Shri Bhagavad Gita and, once
again, only few parts of this is available now, in the form of “Bhagavatartha Nibhandha” and “Sri
The essence of the teachings contained in this Maha Bhagavata Purana, in each of it’s cantos,
divisions and chapters, has been explained, by our Shri Mahaprabhu, as a treatise expounding a sastra or
philosophical system, in his monumental work “Bhagavatartha Nibhandha”.
Out Shri Mahaprabhu has described the meanings of the syllables, words and sentences of
Shri Maha Bhagavata Purana, in a summarized way, in his “SUKSHMA TEEKA” (subtle commentary).
This is also available only in parts. He had desired to undertake this type of a very detailed and
comprehensive interpretation of Shri Maha Bhagavata Purana. But, he could do such a detailed
interpretation, in his Sri Subodhini, only for the 1st, 2nd , 3rd, 10th Cantos and very few chapters of the
11th Canto, of Shri Maha Bhagavata Purana.
In this proposed English translation of Shri Subodhini our dear Shri T. Ramanan, has, with
considerable sustained efforts, brought out the “Bhava” of devotion (Bhakti) to our Lord Shri Krishna
(as being the main purport of this treatise), based on an inspired, devoted and a most desirable oneness,
of his love and devotion to our Lord Shri Krishna. On hearing several parts of this devotion-based
translation, I have experienced wholesome pleasant astonishment and Bliss-indeed, I should say, that I
am unable to control this urge in me, to speak about this joy, based on the experience, which I have
From the time of our Shri Maha