In Bhagavad-gītā (4.2) Lord Kṛṣṇa says:
imaṁ rājarṣayo viduḥ
sa kāleneha mahatā
yogo naṣṭaḥ parantapa
“This supreme science was thus received through the chain of disciplic succession, and the saintly kings understood it in that way. But in course of time the succession was broken, and therefore the science as it is appears to be lost.”
Through the disciplic succession the royal order was on the same platform as great saintly persons (rāja-ṛṣis). Formerly they could understand the philosophy of life and knew how to train the citizens to come to the same standard. In other words, they knew how to deliver the citizens from the entanglement of birth and death. When Mahārāja Daśaratha ruled Ayodhyā, the great sage Viśvāmitra once came to him to take away Lord Rāmacandra and Lakṣmaṇa to the forest to kill a demon. When the saintly person Viśvāmitra came to the court of Mahārāja Daśaratha, the King, in order to receive the saintly person, asked him, aihiṣṭaṁ yat tat punar janma jayāya. He asked the sage whether everything was going on well in his endeavor to conquer the repetition of birth and death. The whole process of Vedic civilization is based on this point. We must know how to conquer the repetition of birth and death. Mahārāja Rahūgaṇa also knew the purpose of life; therefore when Jaḍa Bharata put the philosophy of life before him, he immediately appreciated it. This is the foundation of Vedic society. Learned scholars, brāhmaṇas, saintly persons and sages who were fully aware of the Vedic purpose advised the royal order how to benefit the general masses, and by their cooperation the general masses were benefited. Therefore everything was successful. Mahārāja Rahūgaṇa attained this perfection of understanding the value of human life; therefore he regretted his insulting words to Jaḍa Bharata, and he immediately descended from his palanquin and fell down at the lotus feet of Jaḍa Bharata in order to be excused and to hear from him further about the values of life known as brahma jijñāsā (inquiry into the Absolute Truth). At the present moment, high government officials are ignorant of the values of life, and when saintly persons endeavor to broadcast the Vedic knowledge, the so-called executives do not offer their respectful obeisances but try to obstruct the spiritual propaganda. Thus one can say that the former kingly government was like heaven and that the present government is like hell.