This is a transcendental declaration:
नमो भगवते वासुदेवाय।
namo bhagavate vāsudevāya
The son of Vasudeva is All-Attractive,
When we stop wanting to be attractive, and start to enjoy being attracted; when we stop wanting to be loved, and start to enjoy giving love; then we will be able to truly let go of sorrows and pains. Next, when our attraction and love finds the all-attractive beloved, like an arrow finding its target or a river finding the sea, the ecstatic bliss and profound happiness we know is the very point of being alive will saturate us absolutely.
This is the key to enlightenment and the theme this book will explore from so many fascinating angles.
How do we fall in love with the All-Attractive?
“Dhīmahi:” Our thoughts must embrace the beloved. We must meditate, contemplate, and simply think about the All-Attractive son of Vasudeva.
Who is this “son of Vasudeva”?
“Janmādy asya yataḥ:” He is more creative than anyone or anything else; the creative entity from which all other creative entities in the universe spring forth.
The son of Vasudeva is “svarāṭ” – completely independent. He grants independence and freewill to all that springs forth from him. Thus his beautiful creations have the potential to create ugliness in their worlds. This does not indicate that there is any ugliness inherent within him.
He knows exactly what he is doing and why. He is perfectly aware, directly and indirectly, of everything that springs forth from him. He is therefore the perfect lover, for he completely understands the heart, mind and soul of the beloved. He is the perfect guide and gradually he patiently encourages all his emanations towards beauty and bliss.
From him, spiritual bliss and enlightenment comes into our hearts. Even the Creator, Brahmā, received his inspiration and knowledge from Vasudeva’s son. Without him even the gods become bewildered, confused, and incapable. Not only to all creative beings come from him, even the materials they use for creativity are nothing but his energy!
The Supreme Being is not boring, cranky and old! He is an eternal and infinite manifestation of pleasures, replete with all the talents and paraphernalia for enjoying unlimited ecstasy. The enjoyments relished in divine love with the Supreme have their faint echo in all the pleasures we know or have dreamed of in this world. But the echoes are fleeting and thus a miserable hunger persists for them. The delights of the All-Attractive are not hollow like their echoes. They are not frantic attempts to escape pain. They are divine blossoms of inherently overflowing self-sufficient bliss.
We experience problems in life because we try to be attractive instead of being attracted to him; we try to be the enjoyer instead of being enjoyed by him. There is no truth to this costume we wish to adorn, and that is why it becomes a burden to maintain. There is no such burden of falsehood upon the all-truthful pleasures of the All-Attractive. He truly is the All-Attractive supreme enjoyer. Therefore his enjoyment is ever-fresh, unbounded, and pristine.
Therefore let our thoughts and emotions flow like rivers to the ocean of beauty that is the All-Attractive, “Śrī Krishna.”
Yes! Let our thoughts and emotions flow into the All-Attractive ocean… but how?
We need subject matter for such thoughts. Therefore the greatest sage compiled a book full of such, Beautiful Tales of the All-Attractive. Dive very deeply into its delightful waves of nectar, and don’t waste any time being distracted to other subjects!
Why? What is so special about this book?
Unlike other books, even those that are religious and spiritual, Śrīmad Bhāgavatam goes direct and straight to the true heart; banishing from its pages all hints of mundane religion and self-centered spiritualties – which are really nothing more than selfishness in a fancy outfit. Even the most enlightened and selfless souls delight in the topics of this book.
What is the effect of meditating on what is in this book?
You will capture the All-Attractive Being, Śrī Krishna, in the loving confines of your own heart’s embrace! The mere side-effect is that everything inauspicious in yourself and your world will be annihilated, absolutely and everything auspicious will manifest gloriously.
Besides the Beautiful Tales of the All-Attractive, what else could you possibly require!? Let us meditate on the All-Attractive son of Vasudeva by attentively and eagerly hearing these wonderful tales!
 Tradition holds this book, Śrīmad Bhāgavatam, to be the evolution, sequel, commentary, and natural progression of the most important literary works of Vedic, Upanishadic and Puranic culture.
Among all Vedic mantra, the Brahmā Gayatrī is most renowned. It directs us to place our meditation (“dhīmahi”) upon the source of all light. Śrīmad Bhāgavatam is held as the evolution of this mantra because it gives the same directive (“dhīmahi”) and also gives us ample and delightful descriptions of the All-Attractive Origin upon whom the Brahmā Gayatrī advises us to meditate.
Among all Upanishads, Vedānta Sūtra stands at the fore. It begins by defining the Supreme as the source of all things (“janmādy asya yataḥ”). Śrīmad Bhāgavatam begins with the same definition (“janmādy asya yataḥ”) and goes a step further to define the intimate personality of and all-attractive nature of that Ultimate Source.
In Puranic culture, the Mahābhārata is the greatest and most beloved work. From chapter 7 onward, Śrīmad Bhāgavatam establishes itself as a sequel to Mahābhārata.
 The “greatest sage” (mahāmuni) is Vyāsa. This will be clear a little later in the book. He is credited as Śrīmad Bhāgavatam’s “compiler” (kṛte) but we will learn from the book itself that it is a compilation from several authors including Sūta, Śuka, and even Krishna himself.
 Common religion deals mainly with morality – which is an effort to make the world a better place. This is a form of extended selfishness. Common spirituality deals with self-realization, again an extension of selfishness. The Bhāgavatam proposes something significantly new and different: selfless love of the All-Attractive!