अत्यक्रामदविज्ञात: काल: परमदुस्तर: ॥ १७ ॥
Insurmountable eternal time imperceptibly overcomes those who are too much attached to family affairs and are always engrossed in their thought.
“I am now happy; I have everything in order; my bank balance is quite enough; I can now give my children enough estate; I am now successful; the poor beggar sannyāsīs depend on God, but they come to beg from me; therefore I am more than the Supreme God.” These are some of the thoughts which engross the insanely attached householder who is blind to the passing of eternal time. Our duration of life is measured, and no one is able to enhance it even by a second against the scheduled time ordained by the supreme will. Such valuable time, especially for the human being, should be cautiously spent because even a second passed away imperceptibly cannot be replaced, even in exchange for thousands of golden coins amassed by hard labor. Every second of human life is meant for making an ultimate solution to the problems of life, i.e., repetition of birth and death and revolving in the cycle of 8,400,000 different species of life. The material body, which is subject to birth and death, diseases and old age, is the cause of all sufferings of the living being, otherwise the living being is eternal; he is never born, nor does he ever die. Foolish persons forget this problem. They do not know at all how to solve the problems of life, but become engrossed in temporary family affairs not knowing that eternal time is passing away imperceptibly and that their measured duration of life is diminishing every second, without any solution to the big problem, namely repetition of birth and death, disease and old age. This is called illusion.
But such illusion cannot work on one who is awake in the devotional service of the Lord. Yudhiṣṭhira Mahārāja and his brothers the Pāṇḍavas were all engaged in the service of the Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa, and they had very little attraction for the illusory happiness of this material world. As we have discussed previously, Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira was fixed in the service of the Lord Mukunda (the Lord, who can award salvation), and therefore he had no attraction even for such comforts of life as are available in the kingdom of heaven, because even the happiness obtained on the planet Brahmaloka is also temporary and illusory. Because the living being is eternal, he can be happy only in the eternal abode of the kingdom of God (paravyoma), from which no one returns to this region of repeated birth and death, disease and old age. Therefore, any comfort of life or any material happiness which does not warrant an eternal life is but illusion for the eternal living being. One who understands this factually is learned, and such a learned person can sacrifice any amount of material happiness to achieve the desired goal known as brahma-sukham, or absolute happiness. Real transcendentalists are hungry for this happiness, and as a hungry man cannot be made happy by all comforts of life minus foodstuff, so the man hungry for eternal absolute happiness cannot be satisfied by any amount of material happiness. Therefore, the instruction described in this verse cannot be applied to Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira or his brothers and mother. It was meant for persons like Dhṛtarāṣṭra, for whom Vidura came especially to impart lessons.