|Chapter 9||Confidential Knowledge of the Ultimate Truth||Verse 30|
Rudra Vaisnava Sampradaya:
The power of bhakti or loving devotional service to the Supreme Lord is so potent that it is indomitable and indestructible. Even if a person of abominable behaviour somehow or other worships the Supreme Lord Krishna or any of His Vedically authorised incarnations exclusively with determination comprehending that all other gods are but part of Him then such a person is considered venerable and because He desires to serve the Supreme Lord solely He has made the correct resolve and come to the right conclusion.
Brahma Vaisnava Sampradaya:
The unrighteous and wicked who are of vile and evil nature can practically never be devotees of the Supreme Lord Krishna. But if some how by chance they receive the mercy of His devotees then by that potency they sometimes can have a change of heart and begin to regard the Supreme Lord in a reverential mood propitiating Him exclusively. This causes them to accumulate much merit and as they develop and advance with this state of consciousness they can be considered to be transformed into the noble and saintly for being rightly resolved.
Sri Vaisnava Sampradaya:
Persons of this world are born into different castes with each caste having its own ordinances of conduct some injunctions being mandatory and other injunctions being prohibitory. Even if a member of a particular caste transgresses the injunctions of that particular caste they deserve to be accounted for as praiseworthy if they have resolved themselves to performing exclusive worship of the Supreme Lord Krishna. Such a person is to be esteemed and honoured as spiritually enlightened and the best of human beings equal to His devotees previously mentioned. It may be questioned how can this be possible that such a transgressor of the injunctions of his caste can achieve this position. It is because their present conduct and resolution are definitively focused in the right conclusion of unwavering bhakti or loving devotion to the Supreme Lord. Such a fixed state of mind consists of the implicit understanding not available to everyone that Lord Krishna solely is cause of all creation, that Lord Krishna alone is the source of infinite universes, that Lord Krishna Himself is the ultimate controller of everything movable and stationary. That Lord Krishna is the Supreme Lord of all and is also my teacher, my friend, my sole object of supreme delight. A person thinking like this is always situated in righteousness. Such a person is always to be honoured and should not be disregarded due to any dereliction of duty or deviation from the dictates of his caste. To the contrary because all his attention and energies are focused in propitiation and worship of the Supreme Lord such a person is to be even more respected and honoured. But if there is still any objections that by transgressing the customary injunctions and ordinances of one's caste must cause obstacles and impediments for developing atma tattva or realisation of the soul and taking one further away from the Supreme Lord as stated in the Vedic scriptures that such a person shall not attain the Supreme Lord if they have not ceased from unrighteousness, who is not free from passion, whose mind is not under control and whose senses are unbridled even if such persons possess knowledge of the brahman or spiritual substratum pervading all existence.
Kumara Vaisnava Sampradaya:
Lord Krishna expounds upon the wonderful position of His devotee emphasising it with the words api cet suduracaro bhajate mam meaning even if a person of extremely abominable habits worships Him exclusively they are laudable. The devotees of Lord Krishna can never be abominable sinners but if some how or other they took birth in a low caste or even out of caste due to sinful reactions such as blaspheming the Vedic scriptures in a previous life; or even if born in a higher caste from righteous family one deviates from righteous conduct as prescribed for their caste and instead lives a life of debauchery due to making offences against devotees in a previous life. Both are equally unfit to be considered pious yet if in spite of this they worship the Supreme Lord exclusively then they are praiseworthy. One who is even more sinful then the two aforesaid mentioned who has incurred great sins such as eating food before offering it unto the Supreme Lord, who eats grains on Ekadasi the 11th day before the new and full moons, who is a liar and who is ungrateful is designated as the vilest of sinners. If such a person receiving the mercy of a devotee has a change of heart and excluding the worship of any other god, devotes themselves to worshipping the Supreme Lord, exclusively surrendering to Him, who is endowed with all possibilities, who is the supplier of all needs and the protector of all, who is the sole objective and goal for those who have achieved moksa or liberation from material existence. Who is the repository for everyone, the goal and the source of all life; such a being should be considered venerable as the jnani stated earlier in VII.XVI who consider the Supreme Lord as the sole goal because they also are absolute devotees of correct resolve. The absolute devotee worshipping the Supreme Lord exclusively does not desire any rewards for such service except to have communion with Him is the best of the best. The absolute devotee has come to the irrevocable resolve that surrender to the Supreme Lord Krishna, the origin of all creation, the source of all sentient beings, the objective of the Upanisads, the beloved of the gopi's and the hope of the liberated beings. This surrender applies to any of His authorised incarnations and expansions as well asn is the only object of attainment and that worship of Him can only be performed through the authority of the Vedic scriptures under the guidance of a spiritual preceptor from one of the four bonafide sampradaya's empowered spiritual line of disciplic succession. The particle api cet meaning even if denotes all possibilities according to Panini's rule I.IV.LXXXXVI.
The understanding is that even if due to excessive sinful activities a person was unfit for inclusion of conduct worthy of Vedic piety and suffered a demotion and downfall; the Supreme Lord being a ocean of all auspicious attributes like compassion, forgiveness, kindness and affection graced such a person with a human birth and association with the spiritual preceptor to guide such a person back to absolute devotion for the Supreme Lord. Compassion is the Supreme Lord's nature and thus naturally we depend fully upon His compassionate nature. Such a person realises that the Supreme Lord Himself caused them to perceive the atma or soul as totally under His control and to be separate from the physical body and senses. Thus made aware that one is His absolute devotee by the grace of the spiritual preceptor one becomes very grateful and humble. Therefore immensely appreciating His mercy it is their prime duty to serve the spiritual preceptor wholeheartedly and worship the Supreme Lord who is an ocean of boundless mercy life after life. This is the unparalleled firm resolve of the absolute devotee.