संसारचक्रकदनाद् ग्रसतां प्रणीत: ।
बद्ध: स्वकर्मभिरुशत्तम तेऽङ्घ्रिमूलं
प्रीतोऽपवर्गशरणं ह्वयसे कदा नु ॥ १६ ॥
saṁsāra-cakra-kadanād grasatāṁ praṇītaḥ
baddhaḥ sva-karmabhir uśattama te ’ṅghri-mūlaṁ
prīto ’pavarga-śaraṇaṁ hvayase kadā nu
trastaḥ — frightened; asmi — am; aham — I; kṛpaṇa-vatsala — O my Lord, who are so kind to the fallen souls (who have no spiritual knowledge); duḥsaha — intolerable; ugra — ferocious; saṁsāra-cakra — of the cycle of birth and death; kadanāt — from such a miserable condition; grasatām — among other conditioned souls, who devour one another; praṇītaḥ — being thrown; baddhaḥ — bound; sva-karmabhiḥ — the course by the reactions of my own activities; uśattama — O great insurmountable; te — Your; aṅghri-mūlam — to the soles of the lotus feet; prītaḥ — being pleased (with me); apavarga-śaraṇam — which are the shelter meant for liberation from this horrible condition of material existence; hvayase — You will call (me); kadā — when; nu — indeed.
O most powerful, insurmountable Lord, who are kind to the fallen souls, I have been put into the association of demons as a result of my activities, and therefore I am very much afraid of my condition of life within this material world. When will that moment come when You will call me to the shelter of Your lotus feet, which are the ultimate goal for liberation from conditional life?
Being in the material world is certainly miserable, but certainly when one is put into the association of asuras, or atheistic men, it is intolerably so. One may ask why the living entity is put into the material world. Indeed, sometimes foolish people deride the Lord for having put them here. Actually, everyone is put into conditional life according to his karma. Therefore Prahlāda Mahārāja, representing all the other conditioned souls, admits that he was put into life among the asuras because of the results of his karma. The Lord is known as kṛpaṇa-vatsala because He is extremely kind to the conditioned souls. As stated in Bhagavad-gītā, therefore, the Lord appears whenever there are discrepancies in the execution of religious principles (yadā yadā hi dharmasya glānir bhavati bhārata … tadātmānaṁ sṛjāmy aham). The Lord is extremely anxious to deliver the conditioned souls, and therefore He instructs all of us to return home, back to Godhead (sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja). Thus Prahlāda Mahārāja expected that the Lord, by His kindness, would call him again to the shelter of His lotus feet. In other words, everyone should be eager to return home, back to Godhead, taking shelter of the lotus feet of the Lord and thus being fully trained in Kṛṣṇa consciousness.