People are generally under the impression that the demigods are powerful, but people are not aware that Krishna is above all of them. The highest of the demigods, Brahma, gave his opinion of this matter in the verse isvarah paramah Krishnah Sac-Cid-Ananda-Vigrahah (Brahma Samhita 5.1): ”Krishna is the supreme controller, and His body is full of knowledge, bliss, and eternality”.

There is only one master-Krishna. All others are subservient, there are thirty-three million demigods. Everyone is bhrtya or servant. When Krishna orders, “My dear Mr So and-So, now please give up your place and leave,” one must go. Therefore everyone is a servant. This is the position of Lord Brahma and the ant as well. Yas tv indragopam athavendram aho sva-karma. From Lord lndra to indragopa, an insignificant insect, everyone is reaping the consequences of his karma.

The demigod goddess Durga is so powerful that she can create, maintain and annihilate. However, she cannot act independently of Krishna. She is like a shadow of Krishna. A sadhu knows that prakrti, nature, is working under Krishna’s direction. Similarly, a policeman knows that he is not working independently but under government orders. This knowledge is required in order that the policeman, who has some power, will not think that he has become God. No, God is not so cheap. God has multi-energies, and one of these energies is Durga. It is not that she is all and all, for there are many millions of Durgas, just as there are many millions of Sivas and millions of universes. Although there are millions of demigods, God is one. It is not that there are a million Gods. Of course, God can expand in millions of forms, but that is different. A devotee offers respects to the demigods as the servant of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, not as the supreme power. One who does not know God as He is considers the demigods to be supreme. Such people are less intelligent. A devotee offers respects to the demigods, but he knows that the Supreme Lord is Krishna. Krishna tu Bhagavan svayam.

Demigods are appointed servants of the Lord, the conversation between Jambavati one of Krishna’s wives, and Kalindi, her friend offers a description of all the demigods.

Jambavati inquired, “Who is this personality circumambulating our Krishna?”

Kalindi replied, “She is Durga, the superintendent of all universal affairs.”

Then Jambavati inquired, “Who is this personality who is trembling at the sight of Krishna?”

Kalindi replied, “He is Lord Shiva.”

Then Jambavati inquired, “Who is the person offering prayers?”

Kalindi replied, “He is Lord Brahma.”

Jambavati then asked, “Who is that person who has fallen on the ground and is offering respect to Krishna?”

Kalindi replied, “He is Indra, the king of heaven.”

Jambavati next inquired, “Who is this person who has come with the demigods and is laughing with them?”

Kalindi replied, “He is my elder brother, Yamaraja, the superintendent of death.”

This conversation offers a description of all the demigods, including Yamaraja.

The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krishna, says in Bhagavad-gita that the natural laws are perfect because of His superintendence. No one should think that nature is working automatically, without superintendence. The Vedic literature says that the clouds are controlled by the demigod Indra, heat is distributed by the sun-god, the soothing moonlight is distributed by Candra and the air is blowing under the arrangement of the demigod Vayu. But above all these demigods is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the chief living entity. Nityo nityanam cetanas cetananam. The demigods are also ordinary living entities, but due to their faithfulness-their devotional service-they have been promoted to such posts. These different demigods, or directors, such as Candra, Varuna, and Vayu, are called Adhikari-devata. The demigods are departmental heads. The government of the Supreme Lord consists not only of one planet or two or three; there are millions of planets and millions of universes. The Supreme Personality of Godhead has a huge government, and He requires assistance. The demigods are considered His bodily limbs. These are described in Vedic literature. The sun-god, moon-god, fire-god and air-god are working under the direction of the Supreme Lord. It is confirmed in the Bhagavad-gita (9.10), mayadhyaksena prakrtih suyate sa-caracaram. The natural laws are being conducted under His direction. Because He is in the background, everything is being performed punctually and regularly.

Source: A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada (2014 edition), “The Science of Self-Realization”, Page 343

A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada (2007 edition), “Teachings of Lord Kapila, The Son of Devahuti”, Page 17, 155, 244

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