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CC Madhya 19.75


jātiḥ śāstraṁ japas tapaḥ
aprāṇasyeva dehasya
maṇḍanaṁ loka-rañjanam


bhagavat-bhakti-hīnasya — of a person devoid of devotional service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead; jātiḥ — birth in a high caste; śāstram — knowledge in the revealed scriptures; japaḥ — pronunciation of mantras; tapaḥ — austerities and penances; aprāṇasya — which is dead; iva — like; dehasya — of a body; maṇḍanam — decoration; loka — to the whims of people in general; rañjanam — simply pleasing.


“ ‘For a person devoid of devotional service, birth in a great family or nation, knowledge of the revealed scriptures, performance of austerities and penance, and chanting of Vedic mantras are all like ornaments on a dead body. Such ornaments simply serve the concocted pleasures of the general populace.’ ”