SB 1.4 - Vyāsa's dissatisfaction
Even after preparing literatures for the all-round welfare of the general mass of people, Vyāsadeva was still not satisfied in his mind. Thus he began to reflect the cause for his dissatisfaction. He had worshipped the Vedas under strict vows, and also the spiritual masters and the altar of sacrifice. He had shown the import of disciplic succession thru the Mahābhārata. Vyāsa was feeling incomplete, though he was fully equipped with everything required by the Vedas. Purification of the living beings submerged in matter is made possible by the prescribed activities in the Vedas, but the ultimate achievement is different.
Vyāsa then understood the cause for his dissatisfaction because he did not specifically point out bhāgavata dharma – devotional service of the Lord, which is dear both to perfect beings – the paramahaṁsas, and to Acyuta, the infallible Lord. The path of bhakti is pleasing to the most elevated devotees, and the elevated devotees alone are dear to the Lord. Bhāgavata dharma is emphasized repeatedly in Śrīmad Bhāgavatam, especially by Ṛṣabhadeva, Yamarāja, King Citraketu, Prahlāda, and the nine Yogendras. Unless one is fixed in the normal condition of service, neither the Lord nor the living being can become fully satisfied. The vacuum felt by Vyāsadeva was not due to his lack of knowledge. In none of his works were the transcendental activities of the Lord properly explained. Thus not even writing spiritual masterpieces can replace alienation with a lasting sense of completeness. Nothing short of devotedly serving and glorifying Kṛṣṇa can deeply satisfy the soul. The monist has no access to pure bhakti, and they are not counted amongst the paramahaṁsas. It is said here (1.4.31) that bhāgavata dharma is pleasing to the paramahaṁsas. The word bhāgavata dharma cannot mean jñāna, and thus paramahaṁsas can refer only to the devotees and not to the jñānīs. Bhāgavatam should always be connected with the devotees and never taken as the property of the jñānīs. It is definitely expressed herein that without loving service to the Lord, everything is void.
Lacking complete knowledge and being dissatisfied are impossible for Vyāsa, since he is an avatāra of the Lord. Thus it should be understood that these conditions were strongly produced by Kṛṣṇa Himself in order to manifest the Bhāgavatam. Similarly, even Balarāma’s knowledge became covered by Kṛṣṇa for the beauty of the pastimes in bewildering Brahmā. The chief goal of human endeavor, liberation, is achieved only by bhakti. And the unique meaning of all the scriptures becomes visible to all people by bhakti. Just as Vyāsa was regretting his defects, Nārada reached his cottage on the banks of Sarasvatī. Seeing Nārada, Vyāsadeva got up respectfully and worshipped him giving him respects equal to that given to Brahmā, the creator. Nārada is the representative of Brahmā, and thus respected exactly like Brahmā, the father of all vidhis (regulations).