The Value Of Material Opulence
His Divine Grace
A.C.Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Within this material world, one should under¬stand by practical experience the value of mate¬rial opulence, longevity and influence. We have actual experience that even on this planet there have been many great politicians and military commanders like Napoleon, Hitler, Shubhash Chandra Bose and Gandhi, but as soon as their lives were finished, their popularity, influence and everything else were finished also. Prahlada Maharaja formerly gathered the same experience by seeing the activities of Hiranyakashipu, his great father. Therefore Prahlada Maharaja did not give any importance to anything in this material world. No one can maintain his body or material achievements forever. A Vaisnava can understand that nothing within this material world, not even that which is powerful, opulent or influential, can endure. At any time such things may be vanquished. And who can vanquish them? The Supreme Personality of Godhead. Therefore one should conclusively understand that no one is greater than the Supreme Great. Since the Supreme Great demands, sarva-dharmān par-ityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja [Bg. 18.66], every intelligent man must agree to this proposal. One must surrender unto the Lord to be saved from the wheel of repeated birth, death, old age and disease.
— Srimad-Bhagavatam (Bhagavata Purana) » Canto 7: The Science of God » Chapter 9 » Verse: 23, Purport.