(His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada)
"The word paramahaṁsa mentioned here means 'the supreme swan.' It is said that the swan can draw milk from a mixture of milk and water; it can take only the milk portion and reject the watery portion. Similarly, a person who can draw out the spiritual portion from this material world and who can live alone, depending only on the Supreme Spirit, not on the material world, is called a paramahaṁsa. When one achieves the paramahaṁsa platform, he is no longer under the regulative principles of the Vedic injunctions. A paramahaṁsa accepts only the association of pure devotees and rejects others, who are too much materially addicted. In other words, those who are materially addicted cannot understand the value of the paramahaṁsa, but those who are fortunate—who are advanced in a spiritual sense—take shelter of the paramahaṁsa and successfully complete the mission of human life."