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A person who is very envious, proud, easily angered, restless and complacent is called dhīroddhata by learned scholars. Such qualities were visible in the character of Lord Kṛṣṇa, because when He was writing a letter to Kālayavana, Kṛṣṇa addressed him as a sinful frog. In His letter Kṛṣṇa advised Kālayavana that he should immediately go and find some dark well for his residence because there was a black snake named Kṛṣṇa who was very eager to devour all such sinful frogs. Kṛṣṇa reminded Kālayavana that He could turn all the universes to ashes simply by looking at them.

The above statement by Kṛṣṇa seems apparently to be of an envious nature, but according to different pastimes, places and times this quality is accepted as a great characteristic. Kṛṣṇa’s dhīroddhata qualities have been accepted as great because Kṛṣṇa uses them only to protect His devotees. In other words, even undesirable traits may also be used in the exchange of devotional service.

Sometimes Bhīma, the second brother of the Pāṇḍavas, is also described as dhīroddhata.

Once, while fighting with a demon who was appearing as a deer, Kṛṣṇa challenged him in this way: “I have come before you as a great elephant named Kṛṣṇa. You must leave the battlefield, accepting defeat, or else there is death awaiting you.” This challenging spirit of Kṛṣṇa’s is not contradictory to His sublime character; because He is the Supreme Being, everything is possible in His character.

There is a nice statement in the Kūrma Purāṇa about these contradictory traits of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. It is stated there that the Supreme Person is neither very fat nor very thin; He is always transcendental to material qualities, and yet His bodily luster is blackish. His eyes are reddish, He is all-powerful, and He is equipped with all different kinds of opulences. Contradictory traits in Kṛṣṇa’s person are not at all surprising; one should not consider the characteristics of Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, to be actually contradictory. One should try to understand the traits of Kṛṣṇa from authorities and try to understand how these characteristics are employed by the supreme will of the Lord.

In the Mahā-varāha Purāṇa it is confirmed that the transcendental bodies of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and His expansions are all existing eternally. Such bodies are never material; they are completely spiritual and full of knowledge. They are reservoirs of all transcendental qualities. In the Viṣṇu-yāmala-tantra there is a statement that because the Personality of Godhead and His expanded bodies are always full of knowledge, bliss and eternity, they are always free from the eighteen kinds of material contaminations – illusion, fatigue, errors, roughness, material lust, restlessness, pride, envy, violence, disgrace, exhaustion, untruth, anger, hankering, dependence, desire to lord over the universe, seeing duality and cheating.

Regarding all of the above-mentioned statements, it is understood that the Mahā-viṣṇu is the source of all incarnations in the material world. But because of His greater, extraordinary opulence, we can understand that the son of Nanda Mahārāja is the source of the Mahā-viṣṇu also. This is confirmed in the Brahma-saṁhitā, wherein it is stated, “Let me offer my respectful obeisances unto Govinda, whose partial representation is the Mahā-viṣṇu.” The gigantic form of the Mahā-viṣṇu is the source of generation for innumerable universes. Innumerable universes are coming out of His exhaling breath, and the same universes are going back in with His inhaling breath. This Mahā-viṣṇu is also a plenary portion of a portion of Kṛṣṇa.

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