BG Chap 12 - More qualities of devotees that endear them to the Lord
From the devotee no one receives disturbance due to fear. He does not act to cause distress to others because he is compassionate to all. Also others do not act to cause distress to him because they know he is not hostile to anyone. He does not have to do anything to avoid material emotions like joy, jealousy, fear and anxiety because these emotions give him up. Being deeply absorbed in relishing the ātmā, he is not touched by these emotions at all. Joy means to become excited at the acquisition of something enjoyable for oneself. Envy means intolerance of others attaining enjoyable items. Fear is alarm caused by seeing some unfortunate conditions. Anxiety is the disturbance caused by thinking, “How can I survive without doing something?” These four are states of consciousness. A devotee who is always transcendental to all these disturbances is very dear to Kṛṣṇa.
The devotee is not dependent on the ordinary course of activities because he is devoid of expectations from material work, enjoying what comes out of its own accord. He is pure internally and externally. He is expert in discerning the meaning of the scriptures. He is neutral, not taking sides, being unattached to material persons. He is free from all pain even if wronged by others. He rejects all distracting undertakings because he does not make any attempts which are contrary to his practice of devotion. He may construct a temple for the Lord, and for that he may take all kinds of anxiety, but he does not construct a big house for his personal relations. Viśvanātha says that the devotee even gives up some spiritual endeavors such as some types of teaching scripture. The devotee neither rejoices at gaining dear things, nor grieves on attaining what is disagreeable. He does not lament on the destruction of what is dear to him, nor hankers for what he does not have. He renounces both pious and sinful actions because they are both causes of bondage. He is prepared to accept all kinds of risks for the satisfaction of the Supreme Lord. Nothing is an impediment in the discharge of his devotional service. Such a devotee is very dear to Kṛṣṇa.
The devotee is equal to enemy and friend, and is equipoised in honor and dishonor, heat and cold, and happiness and distress. He is free from contaminating association. He does not become dejected on being criticized, nor elated on being praised. He is silent, for he is controlled in his speech, contemplating on his Lord. Silent does not mean that one should not speak; silent means that one should not speak nonsense. One should speak only of essentials, and the most essential speech for the devotee is to speak for the sake of the Supreme Lord. He is satisfied with whatever comes by fate. He has no fixed residence or is devoid of the illusions arising from possessing a house. He may sometimes live underneath a tree, and he may sometimes live in a very palatial building; he is attracted to neither. He is convinced in his knowledge.
There is no fault in the repetition of qualities as the purpose is to show the great rarity of these qualities. It is to emphasize the fact that a devotee must acquire all these qualifications. Without good qualifications, one cannot be a pure devotee. Harāv abhaktasya kuto mahad-guṇāḥ: one who is not a devotee has no good qualification. One who wants to be recognized as a devotee should develop the good qualifications. Of course he does not extraneously endeavor to acquire these qualifications, but engagement in Kṛṣṇa consciousness and devotional service automatically helps him develop them.