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ŚB 10.24.37


एषोऽवजानतो मर्त्यान् कामरूपी वनौकस: । हन्ति ह्यस्मै नमस्याम: शर्मणे आत्मनो गवाम् ॥ ३७ ॥


eṣo ’vajānato martyān
kāma-rūpī vanaukasaḥ
hanti hy asmai namasyāmaḥ
śarmaṇe ātmano gavām


eṣaḥ — this one; avajānataḥ — those who are neglectful; martyān — mortals; kāma-rūpī — assuming any form at will (such as that of the snakes who live upon the hill); vana-okasaḥ — residents of the forest; hanti — will kill; hi — certainly; asmai — to him; namasyāmaḥ — let us pay our obeisances; śarmaṇe — for the protection; ātmanaḥ — of ourselves; gavām — and of the cows.


“This Govardhana Hill, assuming any form he wishes, will kill any residents of the forest who neglect him. Therefore let us pay our obeisances to him for the safety of ourselves and our cows.”


Kāma-rūpī indicates that the form of Govardhana can manifest as poisonous snakes, wild animals, falling rocks and so on, all of which are competent to kill a human being.

According to Śrīla Śrīdhara Svāmī, the Lord presented six theoretical points in this chapter: 1) that karma alone is sufficient to determine one’s destiny; 2) that one’s conditioned nature is the supreme controller; 3) that the modes of nature are the supreme controller; 4) that the Supreme Lord is simply a dependent aspect of karma; 5) that He is under the control of karma; and 6) that one’s occupation is the actual worshipable deity.

The Lord presented these arguments not because He believed them but rather because He wanted to stop the impending sacrifice to Indra and divert it to Himself in the form of Govardhana Hill. In this way the Lord desired to agitate that falsely proud demigod.