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devah ksetrani tirthani
sanaih punanti kalena
tad apy arhattameksaya
One can gradually become purified by seeing, touching and worshiping temple deities, places of pilgrimage and holy rivers. But one can attain the same result immediately simply by receiving the glance of exalted sages.
Rather than remaining in seclusion and concentrating on their own perfection, Vaisnava brahmanas of the highest order dedicate their lives to sharing the benediction of the Lord’s devotional service. In the words of the sons of King Pracinabarhi:
tesam vicaratam padbhyam
bhitasya kim na roceta
“Dear Lord, Your personal associates, Your devotees, wander all over the world to purify even the holy places of pilgrimage. Is not such activity pleasing to those who are actually afraid of material existence?” (Bhag. 4.30.37) And Prahlada Maharaja says:
prayena deva munayah sva-vimukti-kama
maunam caranti vijane na parartha-nisthah
naitan vihaya krpanan vimumuksa eko
nanyam tvad asya saranam bhramato ’nupasye
“My dear Lord Nrsimhadeva, I see that there are many saintly persons indeed, but they are interested only in their own deliverance. Not caring for the big cities and towns, they go to the Himalayas or the forest to meditate with vows of silence [mauna-vrata]. They are not interested in delivering others. As for me, however, I do not wish to be liberated alone, leaving aside all these poor fools and rascals. I know that without Krsna consciousness, without taking shelter of Your lotus feet, one cannot be happy. Therefore I wish to bring them back to shelter at Your lotus feet.” (Bhag. 7.9.44)