Prema-bhakti, as actually demonstrated by mother Yasoda
Prema-bhakti, as actually demonstrated by mother Yasoda.
Srila Prabhupada: In the beginning, the Vedic purpose is pursued in three ways (trayi) — by karma-kaṇḍa, jsana-kaṇḍa and upasana-kaṇḍa. When one reaches the complete, perfect stage of upasana-kaṇḍa, one comes to worship Narayaṇa, or Lord Viṣṇu. When Parvati asked Lord Mahadeva, Lord Siva, what is the best method of upasana, or worship, Lord Siva answered, aradhananaḿ sarveṣaḿ viṣṇor aradhanaḿ param. Viṣṇupasana, or viṣṇv-aradhana, worship of Lord Viṣṇu, is the highest stage of perfection, as realized by Devaki. But here mother Yasoda performs no upasana, for she has developed transcendental ecstatic love for Kṛṣṇa. Therefore her position is better than that of Devaki. In order to show this, Srila Vyasadeva enunciates this verse, trayya copaniṣadbhiḥ etc.
When a human being enters into the study of the Vedas to obtain vidya, knowledge, he begins to take part in human civilization. Then he advances further to study the Upaniṣads and gain brahma jsana, impersonal realization of the Absolute Truth, and then he advances still further, to sańkhya-yoga, in order to understand the supreme controller, who is indicated in Bhagavad-gita (paraḿ brahma paraḿ dhama pavitraḿ paramaḿ bhavan/puruṣaḿ sasvatam [Bg. 10.12]). When one understands that puruṣa, the supreme controller, to be Paramatma, one is engaged in the method of yoga (dhyanavasthita-tad-gatena manasa pasyanti yaḿ yoginaḥ [SB 12.13.1]). But mother Yasoda has surpassed all these stages. She has come to the platform of loving Kṛṣṇa as her beloved child, and therefore she is accepted to be on the highest stage of spiritual realization. The Absolute Truth is realized in three features (brahmeti paramatmeti bhagavan iti sabdyate), but she is in such ecstasy that she does not care to understand what is Brahman, what is Paramatma or what is Bhagavan. Bhagavan has personally descended to become her beloved child. Therefore there is no comparison to mother Yasoda’s good fortune, as declared by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu (ramya kacid upasana vrajavadhu-vargeṇa ya kalpita). The Absolute Truth, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, may be realized in different stages. As the Lord says in Bhagavad-gita (4.11):
ye yatha maḿ prapadyante
taḿs tathaiva bhajamy aham
manuṣyaḥ partha sarvasaḥ
“As men surrender unto Me, I reward them accordingly. Everyone follows My path in all respects, O son of Pṛtha.” One may be a karmi, a jnani, a yogi and then a bhakta or prema-bhakta. But the ultimate stage of realization is prema-bhakti, as actually demonstrated by mother Yasoda.
(SB. 10.8.45, Purport)