Srimad-Bhagavatam: Canto 6 - Chapter 1 - Verse 12


को गृध्येत्पण्डितो लक्ष्मीं त्रिपिष्टपपतेरपि ।ययाहमासुरं भावं नीतोऽद्य विबुधेश्वर: ॥ १२ ॥


ko gṛdhyet paṇḍito lakṣmīṁtripiṣṭapa-pater apiyayāham āsuraṁ bhāvaṁnīto ’dya vibudheśvaraḥ


Although I am King of the demigods, who are situated in the mode of goodness, I was proud of a little opulence and polluted by false ego. Under the circumstances, who in this world would accept such riches at the risk of falling down? Alas! I condemn my wealth and opulence.


Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu prayed to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, na dhanaṁ na janaṁ na sundarīṁ kavitāṁ vā jagad-īśa kāmaye: “O my Lord, I do not aspire for material opulence or wealth, nor do I want a great number of followers to accept me as their leader, nor do I want a very beautiful wife to please me.” Mama janmani janmanīśvare bhavatād bhaktir ahaitukī tvayi: “I do not even want liberation. All I want, life after life, is to be a faithful servant of Your Lordship.” According to the laws of nature, when one is extremely opulent one becomes degraded, and this is true both individually and collectively. The demigods are situated in the mode of goodness, but sometimes even one who is situated in such an exalted position as King Indra, the king of all the demigods, falls down because of material opulence. We are now actually seeing this in America. The entire American nation has tried to advance in material opulence without striving to produce ideal human beings. The result is that Americans are now regretting the wholesale criminality of American society and are wondering how America has become so lawless and unmanageable. As stated in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (7.5.31), na te viduḥ svārtha-gatiṁ hi viṣṇum: persons who are unenlightened do not know the aim of life, which is to return home, back to Godhead. Therefore, both individually and collectively, they try to enjoy so-called material comforts, and they become addicted to wine and women. The men produced in such a society are less than fourth class. They are the unwanted population known as varṇa-saṅkara, and as stated in Bhagavad-gītā, an increase of varṇa-saṅkara population creates a hellish society. This is the society in which Americans now find themselves. Fortunately, however, the Hare Kṛṣṇa movement has come to America, and many fortunate young men are giving serious attention to this movement, which is creating ideal men of first-class character, men who completely refrain from meat-eating, illicit sex, intoxication and gambling. If the American people are serious about curbing the degraded criminal life of their nation, they must take to the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement and try to create the kind of human society advised in Bhagavad-gītā (cātur-varṇyaṁ mayā sṛṣṭaṁ guṇa-karma-vibhāgaśaḥ). They must divide their society into first-class men, second-class men, third-class men and fourth-class men. Since they are now creating only men who are less than fourth class, how can they avoid the dangers of a criminal society? Long, long ago, Lord Indra regretted his disrespect to his spiritual master, Bṛhaspati. Similarly, it is advised that the American people regret their mistaken advancement in civilization. They should take advice from the spiritual master, the representative of Kṛṣṇa. If they do so, they will be happy, and theirs will be an ideal nation to lead the entire world.