Mukunda Goswami Sanga

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Founder-Acharya: His Divine Grace
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Is Vyas Still Living?

We have read that Vyasadeva may still be alive and well, wandering in the Himalayas. A translation to Srimad Bhagavatam 9.12.6 and Srila Prabhupada's comments on the longevity of Vyas and Asvathama in his purport to this text is instructive. First the text, in which Sukadeva Goswami says: "Having achieved perfection in the power of mystic yoga, Maru still lives in a place known as Kalapa-grama. At the end of Kali yuga, he will revive the lost Surya dynasty by begetting a son." Then the purport by Srila Prabhupada: "At least five thousand years ago, Srila Sukadeva Gosvami ascertained the existence of Maru in Kalapa-grama and said that Maru, having achieved a yoga-siddha body, would continue to exist until the end of Kali-yuga, which is calculated to continue for 432,000 years. Such is the perfection of mystic power. By controlling the breath, the perfect yogi can continue his life for as long as he likes. Sometimes we hear from the Vedic literature that some personalities from the Vedic age, such as Vyasadeva and Asvatthama, are still living. Here we understand that Maru is also still living. We are sometimes surprised that a mortal body can live for such a long time. The explanation of this longevity is given here by the word yoga-siddha. If one becomes perfect in the practice of yoga, he can live as long as he likes. The demonstration of some trifling yoga-siddha does not constitute perfection. Here is a factual example of perfection: a yoga-siddha can live as long as he likes."