daṇḍa pāṇiṁ na paśyati
taṁ bhraṁśayāmi sampadbhyo
yasya cecchāmy anugraham
mām — Me; aiśvarya — of his power; śrī — and opulence; mada — by the intoxication; andhaḥ — rendered blind; daṇḍa — with the rod of punishment; pāṇim — in My hand; na paśyati — one does not see; tam — him; bhraṁśayāmi — I make fall; sampadbhyaḥ — from his material assets; yasya — for whom; ca — and; icchāmi — I desire; anugraham — benefit.
A man blinded by intoxication with his power and opulence cannot see Me nearby with the rod of punishment in My hand. If I desire his real welfare, I drag him down from his materially fortunate position.
One may argue, “God should desire everyone’s real welfare; therefore why should Lord Kṛṣṇa state in this verse that He removes the intoxicating opulence of one who is about to receive His mercy, rather than simply stating that He will remove everyone’s opulence and bless everyone?” On the other hand, we may point out that irrevocable death occurs for everyone, and thus Lord Kṛṣṇa does take away everyone’s opulence and everyone’s false pride. However, if we apply the Lord’s statement to events within one’s immediate life, before death, we may refer to Kṛṣṇa’s statement in the Bhagavad-gītā (4.11): ye yathā māṁ prapadyante tāṁs tathaiva bhajāmy aham. “As people surrender to Me, I reward them accordingly.” Lord Kṛṣṇa desires everyone’s welfare, but when He says here yasya cecchāmy anugraham, “for one whose welfare I desire,” it is understood that the Lord refers to those who by their own activities and thoughts have manifested a desire to achieve spiritual benefit. Lord Kṛṣṇa wants everyone to be happy in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, but when He sees that a specific person also desires spiritual happiness, the Lord especially desires it for that person. This is a natural act of reciprocation consistent with the Lord’s statement samo ’haṁ sarva-bhūteṣu: “I am equal in My attitude to all living beings.” (Bg. 9.29)