Prabhupada, Nellore, January 7, 1976: [...] In every religious system there is a process of atonement. In Christian religion there is a process of atonement called confession. The Pariksit Maharaja is practical politician. He said that… He had also experience that a criminal is punished and again he commits the criminal act.
Nowadays we practically see also that government has enacted so many laws against criminality, but criminality is going on without any stoppage. We have got practical experience, as we have explained last night, that in the airport the security checking is going on for everyone, which means that after so much education, every one of us, we are dishonest.
This answer is there in the sastra: yasyasti bhaktir bhagavaty akincana sarvair gunais tatra samasate surah. This means that if one is turned to be a pure devotee, then all the good qualities automatically become manifest in him.
Harav abhaktasya kuto mahad-guna manorathenasato dhavato bahih [SB 5.18.12] Whereas a nondevotee, he has no good qualification because he is acting on the mental platform, as such, he will be always attracted by material things.
Sukadeva Gosvami is the son of Vyasadeva. He answered, “My dear king, since acts meant to neutralize impious action are also fruitive, they will not relieve one from the tendency to act fruitively. Persons who subject themselves to the rules and regulation of atonement are not at all intelligent.
Indeed, they are in the mode of darkness. Unless is freed from the mode of ignorance, trying to counteract one action through another is useless because this will not uproot one’s desire. Thus, even though one may superficially seem pious, he will undoubtedly be prone to act impiously.
Therefore real atonement is enlightenment in perfect knowledge, Vedanta, by which one understands the Supreme Absolute Truth.” In this verse there is one particular word, vimarsanam. The meaning of this vimarsanam: “full knowledge of Vedanta.”