Qualities of a Leader – According to Bhāgavatam (Part 2)

Bhāgavatam continues describing the qualities of a genuine leader (4.16.7)

He is patient with the disorderly
and tries to uplift even them.
He is always compassionate to everyone
and supports the needy like the earth supports all creatures.

4) He doesn’t silence those who don’t comply, he deals productively with those who protest. He is patient and tries to uplift them and uplift himself by understanding their criticism and the reasons for their disorder.

5) He is generous in economic and practical ways – giving support to those who need it.

When the gods withhold blessings
that god, Hari, in the form of the King, god of men
immediately protects the citizens from danger and death,
as if he were Indra himself.

The king takes taxes and develops a treasury to store wealth. Thus even if the gods / destiny create drought or famine or catastrophe, the king can draw upon his reserves to save his citizens from death and danger. Therefore he is as good as the lord of the gods, Indra.

Hari himself empowers the king to maintain such reserve of wealth.

Everyone sees his generous face
as the epitome of nectar.
He looks upon everyone with affection,
smiling broadly and beautifully.

5) He is kind, and it is obvious.

He doesn’t hate his subjects for being so needy and weak. The moon is said to have an unlimited supply of nectar, similarly the king has an unlimited supply of life-giving affection for his people. He never looks upon his dependents as if they were a burden. Only the weak look upon their dependents as burdens.

His paths are not visible.
His plans are kept confidential.
His intentions are profound.
His wealth is not fully demonstrated.
He conceals his stature
as the font of unlimitedly glorious qualities,
as Pracetā Varuṇa conceals himself within the seas.

6) He is not an extrovert

He keeps important things secret. He is not in a rush to have his glories known by everyone. He prefers to keep them safe and secret so that others will not attempt to plunder or ruin them. He needs his wealth and resources to serve the needy citizens or to serve the entire community in a time of need – therefore he does not vainly advertise his powers and accomplishments.

Calamity cannot approach him,
from afar he curbs and regulates them.
No one can conquer him,
the flame born from the wood of Vena.

7) He is not embroiled in perpetual crisis!

He is powerful enough to resolve crisis before it becomes critical.

He sees both the outer and inner nature
of everyone’s deeds and plans,
just like the all-witnessing
impartial soul of all bodies.

By spies he sees the inner and outer nature of aggressors, but by personal insight he sees the outer and inner nature of everyones plans and deeds because he is empowered by the Supersoul, which is everywhere and inside and outside of everything.

Continuing from Part 1.

by Vraja Kishor dāsa


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