yudhisthiras tad akarnya
aprcchad vividhan dharman
Translation by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada:
Suta Gosvami said: Maharaja Yudhisthira, after hearing Bhismadeva speak in that appealing tone, asked him, in the presence of all the great rsis, about the essential principles of various religious duties.
Purport by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada:
Bhismadeva, speaking in that appealing tone, convinced Maharaja Yudhisthira that he was very soon passing away. And Maharaja Yudhisthira was inspired by Lord Sri Krsna to ask him of the principles of religion. Lord Sri Krsna inspired Maharaja Yudhisthira to ask Bhismadeva in the presence of many great sages, indicating thereby that the Lord’s devotee like Bhismadeva, although apparently living as a worldly man, is far superior to many great sages, even Vyasadeva. Another point is that Bhismadeva at that time was not only lying on a deathbed of arrows, but was greatly aggrieved because of that state. One should not have asked him any question at that time, but Lord Sri Krsna wanted to prove that His pure devotees are always sound in body and mind by dint of spiritual enlightenment, and thus in any circumstances a devotee of the Lord is in perfect order to speak of the right way of life. Yudhisthira also preferred to solve his problematic questions by asking Bhismadeva rather than ask anyone else present there who was seemingly more learned than Bhismadeva. This is all due to the arrangement of the great wheel-carrier Lord Sri Krsna, who establishes the glories of His devotee. The father likes to see the son become more famous than himself. The Lord declares very emphatically that worship of His devotee is more valuable than the worship of the Lord Himself.