Actions Speak Louder Than Thoughts

It’s always comforting to remember that the Srimad Bhagavatam tells us that sinful thoughts don’t bring sinful results in this age; it is only sinful actions that do. Of course one shouldn’t become complacent and wallow in sinful thought, but the verse is nonetheless encouraging for those who won’t take undue advantage of it. Translation: “Maharaja Pariksit was a realist, like the bees who only accept the essence [of a flower]. He knew perfectly well that in this age of Kali, auspicious things produce good effects immediately, whereas inauspicious acts must be actually performed [to render effects]. So he was never envious of the personality of Kali.” (Srimad Bhagavatam 1.18.7) Purport: “The age of Kali is called the fallen age. In this fallen age, because the living beings are in an awkward position, the Supreme Lord has given some special facilities to them. So by the will of the Lord, a living being does not become a victim of a sinful act until the act is actually performed. In other ages, simply by thinking of performing a sinful act, one used to become a victim of the act. On the contrary, a living being in this age is awarded with the results of pious acts simply by thinking of them. Maharaja Pariksit, being the most learned and experienced king by the grace of the Lord, was not unnecessarily envious of the personality of Kali because he did not intend to give him any chance to perform any sinful act. He protected his subjects from falling prey to the sinful acts of the age of Kali, and at the same time he gave full facility to the age of Kali by allotting him some particular places. At the end of the Srimad-Bhagavatam it is said that even though all nefarious activities of the personality of Kali are present, there is a great advantage in the age of Kali. One can attain salvation simply by chanting the holy name of the Lord. Thus Maharaja Pariksit made an organized effort to propagate the chanting of the Lord’s holy name, and thus he saved the citizens from the clutches of Kali. It is for this advantage only that great sages sometimes wish all good for the age of Kali. In the Vedas also it is said that by discourse on Lord Krsna’s activities, one can get rid of all the disadvantages of the age of Kali. In the beginning of the Srimad-Bhagavatam it is also said that by the recitation of Srimad-Bhagavatam, the Supreme Lord becomes at once arrested within one’s heart. These are some of the great advantages of the age of Kali, and Maharaja Pariksit took all the advantages and did not think any ill of the age of Kali, true to his Vaisnavite cult.”