Tag Archive | spirituality

For Lord Nityananda’s Appearance Day

The Magnanimous Nature of Sri Nityananda Prabhu

by Srila Bhakti Raksaka Sridhara Maharaja

Today is the appearance day of Sri Nityananda Prabhu. He is supposed to be thenityananda incarnation of Baladeva in Vrajamandala. Narottama das Thakur says ‘Balaram haila Nitai’. Sanatana Goswami also mentions Nityananda Prabhu as the incarnation of Baladeva in Vrndavana, but some persons within the Gaudiya sampradaya preach that Nityananda Prabhu is the incarnation of Radharani.

So, a vehement protest is given from the side of the Gaudiya Math and we cannot recognize them as the true followers of Gaudiya Vaisnava faith and Mahaprabhu. Nityananda Prabhu took His birth in the district of Virbhum on the Western side of Katwa, north west of Ekachakra, where the Pandavas in disguise lived for sometime.

Nearby is also shown a tree where the Bakaraksasa was killed by Bhimasena. In Ekachakra near Garbhavasa and many other places, we can trace the pastimes of Nityananda Prabhu.

Nityananda Prabhu’s son establised a temple nearby, and Sri Murtis were installed by Him. About two hundred years ago there was a great storm in that area and many ancient arrangements were devastated. A big Zamindar and devotee of the Gaudiya Sampradaya came and restored the puja, the worshipping arrangements at Virachandrapura. All were desolated at that time.

Nityananda Prabhu’s mother’s name was Padmavati, and His father’s name was Hadai Pandit. Ojha was their title although now we do not find any such title.

When Nityananda Prabhu was about 12 years old one sannyasi came and begged Hadai Pandit for his son “I want your son.” The sannyasi came and begged for the child, only one son, and son like Nityananda Prabhu who was very charming. It was almost impossible to live bidding goodbye to such a son, but what to do? A sannyasi has come and asked for him and begging they could not avoid; they could not avoid the sannyasi, they had to give their only son to him. We are told, that sannyasi was no other than Sri Madhavendra Puri, the guru of Iswara Puri, Advaita Acharya, and Pundarika Vidyanidhi. That sannyasi came and took Nityananda Prabhu away from His house when he was only 12 years old; and Nityananda Prabhu wandered with him through the whole of India, visiting all the holy places.

Mahaprabhu did not visit so many holy places. He generally travelled through the south of India, not northern India entirely, only Vrndavana and Prayag. Dvaraka and Badrinarayana were excluded by Mahaprabhu, but Nityananda Prabhu visited all the holy places that exist in India. After Madhavendra Puri disappeared, he was wandering in the holy places. In the meantime Mahaprabhu coming back from Gaya began his Sankirtana Lila in Nabadwipa.

Nityananda Prabhu was wandering here and there and lastly he went to Vrndavana. He was searching for something because of His inner identification with that of Baladeva. When Krsna came he was feeling some tendency of attraction towards him. In the last period, he began searching in Vrndavana very scrutinizingly but did not find that. Then he got some inspiration, “Where to find Krsna?” ‘He is now in Nabadwip,’ “I shall go there,” with this inspiration in his heart he came to Navadwipa Dhama.

Mahaprabhu had already begun his sankirtana movement, and he had a dream at night that someone came in a chariot and at the peak of the chariot there was a palm tree; and he is searching, “Where is Nimai pandit’s house? Where is Nimai Pandit’s house?” Someone then said, “Here is Nimai Pandit’s house.” Mahaprabhu then told to the devotees, “A great personage has come here to Nabadwipa Dhama last night. You (Srivasa and others) try to find out that great person.” The followers tried their best, they searched in every nook and corner but could not find Nityananda Prabhu. They reported to Mahaprabhu “we tried our best but could not trace any noble person, any saint, or any big man.

“Then Mahaprabhu told, ‘Let us try with the followers.” He then went straight to the southern side of Nandana Acharya’s Bhavan. Mahaprabhu went directly to a particular house which is known as Nandana Acharya’s house, and there they found a new gentleman, stout and strong, and golden in appearance, sitting on the veranda of that house. The devotees of Mahaprabhu could then understand him to be the man of whom Sri Gaurangadeva was telling about. He was sitting there in red robes, all others were white dressed. Someone then chanted some Bhagavata sloka, and so many spiritual symptoms gradually appeared in his body.

They could then understand what a great man he is for he was filled with divine love. He was the agreed personage and gradually coming in intimate connection with him they could understand that he was Sri Nityananda Prabhu. Outwardly his movements were not like a scholarly person, or an ordinary man; he was surcharged with a high type of energy and divinity coming forth from his complexion.

Mahaprabhu gradually began preaching, Haridasa Thakura and Nityananda Prabhu were both given orders. “Go from door to door and request them to leave everything aside and take the name of Krsna. Whomever you may meet going from door to door, approach and ask them to take the name of Krsna leaving aside everything else.” At that time Nabadwip Dhama was mostly filled with trantrics, that is the worship of Sakti Devi and Maya Devi.

“This Maya is disturbing us, so we must take shelter under her feet. When she will be satisfied then she will loosen, open the door and we will get out and become Siva. By nature, by birth, jiva means Siva, Siva means the master of Maya. We are now in the clutches of Maya, misunderstanding. When the goddess of misunderstanding is satisfied with us, she will then withdraw and we shall find a door out, we shall go to the other side.

There are so many liberated souls there and we shall join them. They are all enjoying the position of Siva, the master of Maya. Maya cannot force them to do anything and everything as she wills, rather she serves her masters. Maya serves Siva, the liberated souls. Maya serves them though in the relativity of Maya, but they cannot control so they render some service to the liberated souls and they are known as Siva. Pasa baddho bhavet jiva pasa mukta Sadasiva.

When within bondage he is jiva, a fallen soul, when he is outside the bondage of this Maya, this misunderstanding, then he’s always Siva. He can then move here and there at his sweet will and Maya cannot force him, rather she will come to serve him, and that is liberation. We shall then serve Maya devi, and the tantric process involves something, in this way she will be satisfied.

They use many things, they may drink wine and eat meats. They offer them to the deities Maya, Sakti and Kali. They also enjoy the women in different moods. They think that the application of mixing with ladies is such, that they will get liberation from the charm of the ladies. In this way in their process, they approve of the wine, the meat and the ladies it seems to be very harmful to us but these are the underlying principles of the tantric upasana.

In our method, our process of approaching these things which we feel temptation for, we shall get liberation from them. They come to attract us towards them but by a particular process we shall handle them. We shall be masters of those poisonous things, and at that time Navadwipa was filled with such persons.

When Mahaprabhu, Sri Gauranga begun his preaching attempt that everyone should give up everything and take to the name of Krsna, Narayana, he then said, “Not only will you, be out of Maya but you will attain positive life in Vaikuntha, in Vrndavana.” That is higher attainment, and what is to be attained by worshipping the sakti in the method they are following, that is reactionary and sometime again they will have to evolve. This is mentioned in the sastra, but not very extensively. If you are very particular, then you will have to see that in the relativity of this negative world; but it is not safe.

You must enter the positive world then you will be safe. That is not only mere liberation, emancipation from the opposite forces, but practical participation in the serving line, which is very pure. Not to be non-selfish, but must be God-centred, God-serviced. The positive world is there and that is full of pervasive happiness, and that we can attain only through service. Here we are an enjoying unit, an exploiting unit, but it must be given up to get out of the reactionary tendency of life; but we must not wait on the fence, for that is not a safe position.

Then again, that is not paying much because withdrawal from the negative side is not enough. There is a positive world and that is meant for a real high form of life, and that can be attained through service. Service is great, to sacrifice ones own interest, not for any part but for the whole, the absolute good, that is great. Nothing can be compared to that. It is calculative and automatic. To reach the automatic stage of service with love is high pay; so give up all these habits and these former engagements with a lower standard of worshipping, penance and all these things. “Die to Live.” A radical change must be welcome in life.

Life is worth living, life is worth living and it is only open to the human section. In other species it is impossible to get a glimpse of such high light and to begin that way of life, for there are only a very few human beings in the creation. What are the number of human bodies, very small compared to the whole of creation, and that is the door to heaven so you must try to have a positive life. He is Krsna, He is all attractive, He is beautiful, He is the highest reality, He is all accommodating and most charming.

Our life will receive its fulfillment if we can approach that Lord, especially by taking His Holy name. In this age of Kali a special sanction has been given to us that by taking the holy name with satsanga, with the real saints, then we can make progress, enter and approach that high line of preaching.

Nityananda Prabhu was a dynamo of energy and Haridasa Thakura could not follow, a little trouble to carry out the order of Mahaprabhu, what to do?

One day there were so many gunda type persons, they came with an attacking spirit, “You are disturbing us, we are not religious and you have come to preach religion to us; what right have you got? Why do you come to disturb us? As a big society we are following a particular creed, and you are so bold as to blame us for not been religious men. You have come with a new idea of religion and we are to accept that, you fools!

If again you come here you will be taught a good lesson.” In this way they were threatened, but Mahaprabhu still says you must go. Then one day they met Jagai and Madhai. Jagai and Madhai were from Brahmin birth but they did not have any care for religion. They were also entrusted with some administration in the Muslim Government. They had some connection with the Government and they themselves were gundas, although Brahmins by birth. They used to take anything and everything. They were a notorious pair of gundas, Jagadananda and Madhavananda.

Then one day they met him “Oh! You rogues, we have heard of you, you have come to create a new religion here – Never! If we find you again on the street you will receive a licking and will have to weep.” Anyhow, they were given such warning. Nityananda Prabhu had to report every day what progress they had made in their preaching campaign and he almost challenged Mahaprabhu. He said “our life was saved today from the worst pair in the whole of Navadwipa Dham, but if you can deliver them, then I shall think that you have really come to render some service.

They are the greatest rogues ever found in this area and must be converted. If you can do that then we shall say that you have got some power with some objective, and you will be able to do something.” Mahaprabhu felt, “If it is Krsna´s will then everything will be possible.” They again went out preaching and they met those two gundas, Haridasa Thakura coming back and Nityananda Prabhu stood courageously. There was an earthen pot cast away after used on the side of the way. It was taken and thrown on the head of Nityananda Prabhu and his forehead was cut, blood oozing, Nityananda Prabhu standing.

Some person came to Gaurangadeva saying that Nityananda Prabhu was wounded by the rogues. Mahaprabhu very enraged and excited came there. There was blood oozing, “Who has caused this wound on the body of Nityananda Prabhu? I shall finish the whole town, come forward” Mahaprabhu was besides Himself. Then Nityananda Prabhu came, “No! No! Don´t be excited my Lord, in this incarnation we are not to use any force; remember it.” Nityananda Prabhu then reminded Mahaprabhu.

In the meantime there another man approached and told “No, no! They are red-clad mendicants what fame is there in striking them. They are not wholly established rich men or party men, only red-clad sannyasis – there is no credit by killing them or beating them,” and they took Jagai and Madhai away. Nityananda Prabhu then appealed to Mahaprabhu. “What to do, this is not proper. In this age in this time at this juncture what have we come to do, use force? Never!”

In the meantime Madhai came to hit Nityananda Prabhu but Jagai saved him by just opposing him and Mahaprabhu turned around suddenly, “You Jagai, you have protected my Nityananda.” Mahaprabhu then embraced him and Jagai fell at his feet and began to cry “Hare Krsna.” Mental transformation came in Jagai, then Madhai who was standing there said, “for this deed we are two, such a sin, and Jagai´s condition is such,” In that atmosphere his transformation also began.

Then Nityananda Prabhu came to recognize that in the same place with similar persons, one will gain and the other will fail and so he must also be saved.

Then Mahaprabhu said, “Nityananda Prabhu himself is pleading for you, and so you Madhai, you should also be absolved,” Mahaprabhu then embraced him, he also fell, began to weep, and took the holy name Krsna, and there was wholesale conversion of these two great demons. There was within minutes an uproar in the town. “Who is this Nimai Pandita, a scholar, so far we can understand but he is endowed with supernatural power. These two great demons, whoever they came across, or whoever would see them would enter their homes and close their doors, such demoniac persons they were, and they were converted by Nimai Pandita within one hour, what miraculous power.”

So in this way Nimai Pandit, got some footing there. Nimai Pandit is not an ordinary, he is not merely a scholar but he is endowed with some supernatural power, original power. Nityananda Prabhu was famous from that time. Although he was hit on the forehead and blood oozed still he had so much of an extraordinary, patient, forbearing and affectionate heart, that he recommended that gunda who had caused him mischief. Nityananda Prabhu´s position was very safe and very high, a divine position from that time. Nityananda Prabhu has neither an exploiting nor enjoying mood, he is wholeself given to Krsna. Sanatana Goswami has given this in his commentary: In the rasa lila of Krsna, Krsna was enjoying all the gopis, at that time Balarama also had his separate rasa lila.

It is also mentioned in Bhagavatam and other puranas, that Krnsa had His rasa lila and that Baladeva also had his rasa lila, but Sanatana Goswami has given the meaning. That is very fine, very subtle and very difficult to understand. Baladeva continued rasa externally, but in his heart he was making Krsna to participate in that rasa. He was not the party to enjoy the gopis. He is aloof, he is aside, he is only performing, managing the rasa lila with the gopis and Krsna. He is not only indifferent but with so much serving tendency and wholeself serving attitude.

In Vrndavan mandala in vatsalya rasa and sakhya rasa, they also have marriages, they have their sons, but not in any enjoying mood. There is union of men and women but not in an enjoying mood, or then they will have to be left here in the material world. Both parties meet and are united in a serving mood, that is particularly another type of mood, never an enjoying mood, or then they are not to be allowed to enter that domain.

They will be thrown here in the land of exploitation. When they go through the door of emancipation, liberation and enter Vaikuntha, from there also the exploiting tendency is eliminated, what avoidance! They are outwardly participating but internally in a serving mood. It may be impossible to think but it is such, not only the human form but also the birds and beasts, they are also apparently mixing in an enjoying mood, but really their mood is of service attitude. Such a wholesale transformation has to be effected in ones heart, mind and body, before wholly attempting to enter into that domain.

So Hegel said, “Die to live”, if you really want to live in that plane then you will have to die wholesale as you think you are in this life as flesh blood and bones. It is of opposite type, the purity is there, it can be measured; it is not non-scientific but it is really scientific. It is the process of “die to live”! And love is there, the dying tendency for the object of love, that is love proper otherwise it is imitation, it is hypocracy, it is conspiracy to ones own suicidal attainment. The pure thing is that if we have got faith for such divine conception of life then we should come to Bhagavatam, the last gift in the sastric world of vedic literatures.

Vyasadeva´s last gift in the world of vedic literatures is Bhagavatam. The Bhagavatam is so high, so high, prithi vite yata katha dharma nam chole. Our Guru Maharaj´s translation dharmah projjhito kaitavo all the words and tales that are running in this world in the name of religion, Srimad Bhagavatam says all is false, all is false, all is tampered with and not pure, not pure! The pure type of religion is not yet spoken. It is there, all self-centered, the current is towards the centre, not only selflessness but self sacrificing, self forgiving, self forgetfulness, in that way we are to start, we are to start, we are to go.

Sri Nityananda Prabhu came and appealed, “Come to Gauranga, He is the depot, He is the dynamo to send you there very easily. He sang these names of Gauranga on the banks of the Ganges.“Bhaja Gauranga, kaha Gauranga, laha Gauranga nam je jan Gauranga bhaje se amar pran; all you people come and take refuge under the divine feet of Gauranga, give up everything and come fall at the feet of Gauranga. Take His name, remember Him and throw yourself wholly at His disposal. He is my own life, I consider Him to be my life, my soul, my everything.” Nityananda Prabhu saying this began to roll at the door of the householders “Householders! You must do this.” He is rolling and crying, “Accept Gauranga, you don´t know what great benefit you will receive by doing this.”

He is rolling in the dust at the door of the householders with such an appeal. He came to the ordinary masses to give them shelter at the lotus feet of Gauranga, that is Nityananda Prabhu. He came to give Mahaprabhu even to Jagai and Madhai and he appealed to all from door to door to accept Gaurangadeva. You do not know what will be your prospect in life, the highest prospect in life! Nityananda Prabhu is our only hope, He is so benevolent, so generous, so gracious, that very easily we can draw his attention and we can get his recommendation. Gaurangadeva will not be able to disregard his recommendation, and when we have got the grace of Gauranga then the Radha-Krsna lila is within our fists. Nityananda Prabhu´s grace means to get Mahaprabhu´s grace within our clutches and to get Mahaprabhu, means to get Radha-Govinda, Vrndavana, and then everything is within our fists.

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For Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja ~ Disappearance

The Attitude of a Servant: Being the Seen not the Seer

by Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja

[NOTE: This page uses Balarama font (available here) for better transliteration of Sanskrit into English. Click here for a version without Balarama font.]

 

 

It is mentioned in Sri Hari-bhakti-sudhodaya (13.2):

akñëoù phalaà tvädåça-darçanaà hi

tanoù phalaà tvädåça-gätra-saìgaù

jihvä-phalaà tvädåça-kértanaà hi

sudurlabhä bhägavatä hi loke

 

Devotees of Bhagavän are extremely rare in this world. Therefore the perfection of the eyes is to see them, the perfection of the body is to touch them and the perfection of the tongue is to glorify them.  Upon seeing the title of this essay and reading this verse, many people will object to this essay even before reading it. Offering our brothers, the readers, prostrated obeisances (säñöäìga-pranämas) and keeping a straw between our teeth, we earnestly beseech them to hear us.  By submissively approaching the lotus feet of an äcärya who is the personified conclusion and the manifested embodiment of çästra, we can understand that our consideration of çästra is based on external perception and is nothing but the whim of our minds. Whatever çästra refutes or rejects we, according to our desire, accept as the subject and essence of çästra.

In this verse, a fortunate person who has been blessed by darçana of a bhägavad-bhakta is overwhelmed with bliss.  He says, “To have the darçanaof a Vaiñëava is indeed the perfection of the eyes, to touch him is the perfection of the body and to glorify him is the perfection of the tongue, because in this world such bhägavad-bhaktas are rare.

” Such a statement has been delivered by the servant of a Vaiñëava at his lotus feet, after the servant has received the Vaiñëava’s mercy and been overwhelmed by gratitude for him. Unless a Vaiñëava bestows his mercy upon us and reveals his svarüpa, there is no possibility of us knowing and understanding him. When the Vaiñëava mercifully reveals his svarüpa, the jéva remembers his previous mundane, sensual, worldly perception of that Vaiñëava and he naturally feels a deep anguish in his heart. That specific form of the Vaiñëava who is devoted to the service of Bhagavän, attracts him to such an extent that as soon as a previous mundane conception of the Vaiñëava appears on the path of his memory he feels disgusted by it.

It is stated in the above verse, akñëoù phalaà tvädåçadarçanaà hi – the perfection of the eyes is to have darçana of a Vaiñëava. In such darçana the mood to render service under that Vaiñëava’s guidance is indeed expressed.  Vaiñëavas know no one other than Bhagavän. In turn, the vaiñëava-sevaka knows nothing but rendering service according to the direction of the Vaiñëava.

This sevana-dharma, service attitude, of the servant does not aim at attaining his own enjoyment through acts of seeing and touching that Vaiñëava. Bhagavän and Bhagavän’s devotees only accept our nature (svarüpa) that is devoted to service. They never accept our mundane nature, which is devoid of service.

Bhagavän is not a mundane entity (präkåta-vastu). Similarly, the çuddha jévätmä is also not a mundane entity.  In his pure state, the jévätmä is naturally devoted to service that pleases Bhagavän. The intense eagerness for the darçana of Bhagavän that is observed in him is solely to render service to Bhagavän. The perfection of the sevaka’s feet in visiting the dhäma of Bhagavän is to attain the service of Bhagavän. He cleans the temple of Viñëu with his hands, thus enhancing Bhagavän’s pleasure. The sevaka’s two eyes become blessed by collecting all types of beautiful objects solely for the service of Bhagavän. With the help of his nostrils the sevaka is led to gather various fragrant objects to assist in satisfying Bhagavän. With his tongue the sevaka performs the kértana of Bhagavän’s name, form, qualities and pastimes, thus enhancing His bliss.

Besides this, he offers extremely tasteful foodstuffs to Bhagavän, having examined them with his tongue. The sevaka (the worshipper) has a spiritual body so that the sevya (worshipful) Bhagavän can experience the pleasure of touch from that sevaka. The Vaisnavas of the Sri-sampradäyaare devoted to the conception of vidhi-märga, or regulated devotional service, and cannot embrace the purport of this in their hearts. However, in comparison, the service in the higher adhikära of the Gauòéya Vaiñëavas devoted to the path of räga, or deep attachment, attains the highest extent of perfection for all the senses by this method only.

We have entitled this essay: “The Attitude of a Servant: Being the Seen, not the Seer.” This means that one should not consider himself the subject (seer) of Bhagavän. A person should never hurry to have darçana of Bhagavän with the aim of self enjoyment. When a person has käma, or the desire to please his own senses, the door to the transcendental abode of Bhagavän closes to him. And when mundane endeavours for personal enjoyment and false renunciation have been completely eliminated from the heart that has been illuminated by exclusive surrender to Kåñëa (kåñëaika çaraëatä), the servant’s sole disposition is to execute service exclusively for the pleasure of Bhagavän.

The transcendental gopés of Vraja dress solely for the pleasure of Kåñëa. Phalgutva, to falsely renounce that which pleases Kåñëa can never result in finding a place in hearts. Their obsession for Kåñëa is solely to render service to Him. Their act of looking at Kåñëa’s lotus face without blinking their eyelids, is also for enhancing His  bliss. When Kåñëa sees that the gopés are looking at Him, He becomes delighted. Knowing this the gopés are exclusively intent on attaining darçana of Him. When they look at Kåñëa, it is not with the intention of personal enjoyment by being the subject (seer). In other words, they become visible to Kåñëa; they become the object seen by Him. Only to give Kåñëa bliss do they ‘show’ Him their nature (svarüpa), which is completely devoted to His service.  Here the act of ‘showing’ does not express their ego, but indicates the excellence of their service.

 

Thousands and thousands of pilgrims visit holy places in order to have darçana of Bhagavän. Although most think that they received His darçana, they are actually unlimited miles away from receiving it. When one has actually attained darçana of Bhagavän, he is unable to utter statements like, “The deity is made of wood”, “The deity is made of stone”, “The deity is made of clay” and “Jagannätha is devoid of hands and legs”.

 

Their act of ‘seeing’ is endowed with the spirit of personal enjoyment, which is not the spirit of a servant of Bhagavän. Such statements show that their very act of ‘seeing’ Bhagavän concealed, or barred, their sight. Many have lost the path by which they can have darçana of Bhagavän, being covered by the darkness of the newmoon night (the spirit of personal enjoyment). Therefore, for their deliverance my çré gurupäda-padma has cautioned: “Do not go to see Jagannätha with a spirit of personal enjoyment, which is born of aversion for Him and which is prevalent in this world. Enter the temple of Çré Jagadéça carrying the necessary ingredients, that is, a service attitude that delights Jagannätha.

 

 

“Always keep in mind that the act of ‘seeing’ Jagannätha with mundane eyes is not how a servant sees Him. The servant’s disposition is to show Him the nature (svarüpa) of his service attitude – in other words, to become the object (the seen). It means to come within His sight in such a way that delights the worshipful Bhagavän. The servant’s attitude is not to derive pleasure himself by seeing Bhagavän. Rather, brilliantly situated within the servant’s heart is the attitude – ‘Bhagavän will be delighted by seeing me.’ ”
Translated from Sri Gaudiya Patrika, Year 7, Issue 9
by the Rays of The Harmonist team.
Published in English for the first time in Rays of The Harmonist No. 11 kartikka 2002

For Lord Nityananda’s Appearance Day

The Magnanimous Nature of Sri Nityananda Prabhu

by Srila Bhakti Raksaka Sridhara Maharaja

Today is the appearance day of Sri Nityananda Prabhu. He is supposed to be thenityananda incarnation of Baladeva in Vrajamandala. Narottama das Thakur says ‘Balaram haila Nitai’. Sanatana Goswami also mentions Nityananda Prabhu as the incarnation of Baladeva in Vrndavana, but some persons within the Gaudiya sampradaya preach that Nityananda Prabhu is the incarnation of Radharani.

So, a vehement protest is given from the side of the Gaudiya Math and we cannot recognize them as the true followers of Gaudiya Vaisnava faith and Mahaprabhu. Nityananda Prabhu took His birth in the district of Virbhum on the Western side of Katwa, north west of Ekachakra, where the Pandavas in disguise lived for sometime.

Nearby is also shown a tree where the Bakaraksasa was killed by Bhimasena. In Ekachakra near Garbhavasa and many other places, we can trace the pastimes of Nityananda Prabhu.

Nityananda Prabhu’s son establised a temple nearby, and Sri Murtis were installed by Him. About two hundred years ago there was a great storm in that area and many ancient arrangements were devastated. A big Zamindar and devotee of the Gaudiya Sampradaya came and restored the puja, the worshipping arrangements at Virachandrapura. All were desolated at that time.

Nityananda Prabhu’s mother’s name was Padmavati, and His father’s name was Hadai Pandit. Ojha was their title although now we do not find any such title.

When Nityananda Prabhu was about 12 years old one sannyasi came and begged Hadai Pandit for his son “I want your son.” The sannyasi came and begged for the child, only one son, and son like Nityananda Prabhu who was very charming. It was almost impossible to live bidding goodbye to such a son, but what to do? A sannyasi has come and asked for him and begging they could not avoid; they could not avoid the sannyasi, they had to give their only son to him. We are told, that sannyasi was no other than Sri Madhavendra Puri, the guru of Iswara Puri, Advaita Acharya, and Pundarika Vidyanidhi. That sannyasi came and took Nityananda Prabhu away from His house when he was only 12 years old; and Nityananda Prabhu wandered with him through the whole of India, visiting all the holy places.

Mahaprabhu did not visit so many holy places. He generally travelled through the south of India, not northern India entirely, only Vrndavana and Prayag. Dvaraka and Badrinarayana were excluded by Mahaprabhu, but Nityananda Prabhu visited all the holy places that exist in India. After Madhavendra Puri disappeared, he was wandering in the holy places. In the meantime Mahaprabhu coming back from Gaya began his Sankirtana Lila in Nabadwipa.

Nityananda Prabhu was wandering here and there and lastly he went to Vrndavana. He was searching for something because of His inner identification with that of Baladeva. When Krsna came he was feeling some tendency of attraction towards him. In the last period, he began searching in Vrndavana very scrutinizingly but did not find that. Then he got some inspiration, “Where to find Krsna?” ‘He is now in Nabadwip,’ “I shall go there,” with this inspiration in his heart he came to Navadwipa Dhama.

Mahaprabhu had already begun his sankirtana movement, and he had a dream at night that someone came in a chariot and at the peak of the chariot there was a palm tree; and he is searching, “Where is Nimai pandit’s house? Where is Nimai Pandit’s house?” Someone then said, “Here is Nimai Pandit’s house.” Mahaprabhu then told to the devotees, “A great personage has come here to Nabadwipa Dhama last night. You (Srivasa and others) try to find out that great person.” The followers tried their best, they searched in every nook and corner but could not find Nityananda Prabhu. They reported to Mahaprabhu “we tried our best but could not trace any noble person, any saint, or any big man.

“Then Mahaprabhu told, ‘Let us try with the followers.” He then went straight to the southern side of Nandana Acharya’s Bhavan. Mahaprabhu went directly to a particular house which is known as Nandana Acharya’s house, and there they found a new gentleman, stout and strong, and golden in appearance, sitting on the veranda of that house. The devotees of Mahaprabhu could then understand him to be the man of whom Sri Gaurangadeva was telling about. He was sitting there in red robes, all others were white dressed. Someone then chanted some Bhagavata sloka, and so many spiritual symptoms gradually appeared in his body.

They could then understand what a great man he is for he was filled with divine love. He was the agreed personage and gradually coming in intimate connection with him they could understand that he was Sri Nityananda Prabhu. Outwardly his movements were not like a scholarly person, or an ordinary man; he was surcharged with a high type of energy and divinity coming forth from his complexion.

Mahaprabhu gradually began preaching, Haridasa Thakura and Nityananda Prabhu were both given orders. “Go from door to door and request them to leave everything aside and take the name of Krsna. Whomever you may meet going from door to door, approach and ask them to take the name of Krsna leaving aside everything else.” At that time Nabadwip Dhama was mostly filled with trantrics, that is the worship of Sakti Devi and Maya Devi.

“This Maya is disturbing us, so we must take shelter under her feet. When she will be satisfied then she will loosen, open the door and we will get out and become Siva. By nature, by birth, jiva means Siva, Siva means the master of Maya. We are now in the clutches of Maya, misunderstanding. When the goddess of misunderstanding is satisfied with us, she will then withdraw and we shall find a door out, we shall go to the other side.

There are so many liberated souls there and we shall join them. They are all enjoying the position of Siva, the master of Maya. Maya cannot force them to do anything and everything as she wills, rather she serves her masters. Maya serves Siva, the liberated souls. Maya serves them though in the relativity of Maya, but they cannot control so they render some service to the liberated souls and they are known as Siva. Pasa baddho bhavet jiva pasa mukta Sadasiva.

When within bondage he is jiva, a fallen soul, when he is outside the bondage of this Maya, this misunderstanding, then he’s always Siva. He can then move here and there at his sweet will and Maya cannot force him, rather she will come to serve him, and that is liberation. We shall then serve Maya devi, and the tantric process involves something, in this way she will be satisfied.

They use many things, they may drink wine and eat meats. They offer them to the deities Maya, Sakti and Kali. They also enjoy the women in different moods. They think that the application of mixing with ladies is such, that they will get liberation from the charm of the ladies. In this way in their process, they approve of the wine, the meat and the ladies it seems to be very harmful to us but these are the underlying principles of the tantric upasana.

In our method, our process of approaching these things which we feel temptation for, we shall get liberation from them. They come to attract us towards them but by a particular process we shall handle them. We shall be masters of those poisonous things, and at that time Navadwipa was filled with such persons.

When Mahaprabhu, Sri Gauranga begun his preaching attempt that everyone should give up everything and take to the name of Krsna, Narayana, he then said, “Not only will you, be out of Maya but you will attain positive life in Vaikuntha, in Vrndavana.” That is higher attainment, and what is to be attained by worshipping the sakti in the method they are following, that is reactionary and sometime again they will have to evolve. This is mentioned in the sastra, but not very extensively. If you are very particular, then you will have to see that in the relativity of this negative world; but it is not safe.

You must enter the positive world then you will be safe. That is not only mere liberation, emancipation from the opposite forces, but practical participation in the serving line, which is very pure. Not to be non-selfish, but must be God-centred, God-serviced. The positive world is there and that is full of pervasive happiness, and that we can attain only through service. Here we are an enjoying unit, an exploiting unit, but it must be given up to get out of the reactionary tendency of life; but we must not wait on the fence, for that is not a safe position.

Then again, that is not paying much because withdrawal from the negative side is not enough. There is a positive world and that is meant for a real high form of life, and that can be attained through service. Service is great, to sacrifice ones own interest, not for any part but for the whole, the absolute good, that is great. Nothing can be compared to that. It is calculative and automatic. To reach the automatic stage of service with love is high pay; so give up all these habits and these former engagements with a lower standard of worshipping, penance and all these things. “Die to Live.” A radical change must be welcome in life.

Life is worth living, life is worth living and it is only open to the human section. In other species it is impossible to get a glimpse of such high light and to begin that way of life, for there are only a very few human beings in the creation. What are the number of human bodies, very small compared to the whole of creation, and that is the door to heaven so you must try to have a positive life. He is Krsna, He is all attractive, He is beautiful, He is the highest reality, He is all accommodating and most charming.

Our life will receive its fulfillment if we can approach that Lord, especially by taking His Holy name. In this age of Kali a special sanction has been given to us that by taking the holy name with satsanga, with the real saints, then we can make progress, enter and approach that high line of preaching.

Nityananda Prabhu was a dynamo of energy and Haridasa Thakura could not follow, a little trouble to carry out the order of Mahaprabhu, what to do?

One day there were so many gunda type persons, they came with an attacking spirit, “You are disturbing us, we are not religious and you have come to preach religion to us; what right have you got? Why do you come to disturb us? As a big society we are following a particular creed, and you are so bold as to blame us for not been religious men. You have come with a new idea of religion and we are to accept that, you fools!

If again you come here you will be taught a good lesson.” In this way they were threatened, but Mahaprabhu still says you must go. Then one day they met Jagai and Madhai. Jagai and Madhai were from Brahmin birth but they did not have any care for religion. They were also entrusted with some administration in the Muslim Government. They had some connection with the Government and they themselves were gundas, although Brahmins by birth. They used to take anything and everything. They were a notorious pair of gundas, Jagadananda and Madhavananda.

Then one day they met him “Oh! You rogues, we have heard of you, you have come to create a new religion here – Never! If we find you again on the street you will receive a licking and will have to weep.” Anyhow, they were given such warning. Nityananda Prabhu had to report every day what progress they had made in their preaching campaign and he almost challenged Mahaprabhu. He said “our life was saved today from the worst pair in the whole of Navadwipa Dham, but if you can deliver them, then I shall think that you have really come to render some service.

They are the greatest rogues ever found in this area and must be converted. If you can do that then we shall say that you have got some power with some objective, and you will be able to do something.” Mahaprabhu felt, “If it is Krsna´s will then everything will be possible.” They again went out preaching and they met those two gundas, Haridasa Thakura coming back and Nityananda Prabhu stood courageously. There was an earthen pot cast away after used on the side of the way. It was taken and thrown on the head of Nityananda Prabhu and his forehead was cut, blood oozing, Nityananda Prabhu standing.

Some person came to Gaurangadeva saying that Nityananda Prabhu was wounded by the rogues. Mahaprabhu very enraged and excited came there. There was blood oozing, “Who has caused this wound on the body of Nityananda Prabhu? I shall finish the whole town, come forward” Mahaprabhu was besides Himself. Then Nityananda Prabhu came, “No! No! Don´t be excited my Lord, in this incarnation we are not to use any force; remember it.” Nityananda Prabhu then reminded Mahaprabhu.

In the meantime there another man approached and told “No, no! They are red-clad mendicants what fame is there in striking them. They are not wholly established rich men or party men, only red-clad sannyasis – there is no credit by killing them or beating them,” and they took Jagai and Madhai away. Nityananda Prabhu then appealed to Mahaprabhu. “What to do, this is not proper. In this age in this time at this juncture what have we come to do, use force? Never!”

In the meantime Madhai came to hit Nityananda Prabhu but Jagai saved him by just opposing him and Mahaprabhu turned around suddenly, “You Jagai, you have protected my Nityananda.” Mahaprabhu then embraced him and Jagai fell at his feet and began to cry “Hare Krsna.” Mental transformation came in Jagai, then Madhai who was standing there said, “for this deed we are two, such a sin, and Jagai´s condition is such,” In that atmosphere his transformation also began.

Then Nityananda Prabhu came to recognize that in the same place with similar persons, one will gain and the other will fail and so he must also be saved.

Then Mahaprabhu said, “Nityananda Prabhu himself is pleading for you, and so you Madhai, you should also be absolved,” Mahaprabhu then embraced him, he also fell, began to weep, and took the holy name Krsna, and there was wholesale conversion of these two great demons. There was within minutes an uproar in the town. “Who is this Nimai Pandita, a scholar, so far we can understand but he is endowed with supernatural power. These two great demons, whoever they came across, or whoever would see them would enter their homes and close their doors, such demoniac persons they were, and they were converted by Nimai Pandita within one hour, what miraculous power.”

So in this way Nimai Pandit, got some footing there. Nimai Pandit is not an ordinary, he is not merely a scholar but he is endowed with some supernatural power, original power. Nityananda Prabhu was famous from that time. Although he was hit on the forehead and blood oozed still he had so much of an extraordinary, patient, forbearing and affectionate heart, that he recommended that gunda who had caused him mischief. Nityananda Prabhu´s position was very safe and very high, a divine position from that time. Nityananda Prabhu has neither an exploiting nor enjoying mood, he is wholeself given to Krsna. Sanatana Goswami has given this in his commentary: In the rasa lila of Krsna, Krsna was enjoying all the gopis, at that time Balarama also had his separate rasa lila.

It is also mentioned in Bhagavatam and other puranas, that Krnsa had His rasa lila and that Baladeva also had his rasa lila, but Sanatana Goswami has given the meaning. That is very fine, very subtle and very difficult to understand. Baladeva continued rasa externally, but in his heart he was making Krsna to participate in that rasa. He was not the party to enjoy the gopis. He is aloof, he is aside, he is only performing, managing the rasa lila with the gopis and Krsna. He is not only indifferent but with so much serving tendency and wholeself serving attitude.

In Vrndavan mandala in vatsalya rasa and sakhya rasa, they also have marriages, they have their sons, but not in any enjoying mood. There is union of men and women but not in an enjoying mood, or then they will have to be left here in the material world. Both parties meet and are united in a serving mood, that is particularly another type of mood, never an enjoying mood, or then they are not to be allowed to enter that domain.

They will be thrown here in the land of exploitation. When they go through the door of emancipation, liberation and enter Vaikuntha, from there also the exploiting tendency is eliminated, what avoidance! They are outwardly participating but internally in a serving mood. It may be impossible to think but it is such, not only the human form but also the birds and beasts, they are also apparently mixing in an enjoying mood, but really their mood is of service attitude. Such a wholesale transformation has to be effected in ones heart, mind and body, before wholly attempting to enter into that domain.

So Hegel said, “Die to live”, if you really want to live in that plane then you will have to die wholesale as you think you are in this life as flesh blood and bones. It is of opposite type, the purity is there, it can be measured; it is not non-scientific but it is really scientific. It is the process of “die to live”! And love is there, the dying tendency for the object of love, that is love proper otherwise it is imitation, it is hypocracy, it is conspiracy to ones own suicidal attainment. The pure thing is that if we have got faith for such divine conception of life then we should come to Bhagavatam, the last gift in the sastric world of vedic literatures.

Vyasadeva´s last gift in the world of vedic literatures is Bhagavatam. The Bhagavatam is so high, so high, prithi vite yata katha dharma nam chole. Our Guru Maharaj´s translation dharmah projjhito kaitavo all the words and tales that are running in this world in the name of religion, Srimad Bhagavatam says all is false, all is false, all is tampered with and not pure, not pure! The pure type of religion is not yet spoken. It is there, all self-centered, the current is towards the centre, not only selflessness but self sacrificing, self forgiving, self forgetfulness, in that way we are to start, we are to start, we are to go.

Sri Nityananda Prabhu came and appealed, “Come to Gauranga, He is the depot, He is the dynamo to send you there very easily. He sang these names of Gauranga on the banks of the Ganges.“Bhaja Gauranga, kaha Gauranga, laha Gauranga nam je jan Gauranga bhaje se amar pran; all you people come and take refuge under the divine feet of Gauranga, give up everything and come fall at the feet of Gauranga. Take His name, remember Him and throw yourself wholly at His disposal. He is my own life, I consider Him to be my life, my soul, my everything.” Nityananda Prabhu saying this began to roll at the door of the householders “Householders! You must do this.” He is rolling and crying, “Accept Gauranga, you don´t know what great benefit you will receive by doing this.”

He is rolling in the dust at the door of the householders with such an appeal. He came to the ordinary masses to give them shelter at the lotus feet of Gauranga, that is Nityananda Prabhu. He came to give Mahaprabhu even to Jagai and Madhai and he appealed to all from door to door to accept Gaurangadeva. You do not know what will be your prospect in life, the highest prospect in life! Nityananda Prabhu is our only hope, He is so benevolent, so generous, so gracious, that very easily we can draw his attention and we can get his recommendation. Gaurangadeva will not be able to disregard his recommendation, and when we have got the grace of Gauranga then the Radha-Krsna lila is within our fists. Nityananda Prabhu´s grace means to get Mahaprabhu´s grace within our clutches and to get Mahaprabhu, means to get Radha-Govinda, Vrndavana, and then everything is within our fists.

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For Srila Jayadeva Gosvami Dissappearance Day

 

Sri Jayadeva Goswami appeared in either the eleventh or twelfth century of the Shaka era. There is a difference of opinion about his place of birth. The majority opinion holds that he ailed from the village of Kendubilva, presently in the district of Birbhum. Others claim that he was born in either Orissa or South India.

Kendubilva is situated about twenty miles south of Siuri on the banks of the Ajaya River. In the Gaudiya Vaisnava Abhidhana, it is stated that Jayadeva found his Radha Madhava deities in this river’s waters. It is also stated there that he used to rest and worship at the temple of Shiva known as Kusheshwar, which is also on the banks of the Ajaya River. Jayadeva’s father was named Bhojadeva and his mother, Vama Devi.

 

Jayadeva’s Life in Nabadwip

Jayadeva lived for a long time in Nabadwip during the reign of the king of Bengal, Lakshman Sen, making his home not far from the king’s palace. At that time, the king’s chief scholar was Govardhan Acharya. According to Ashutosh Deb’s Bengali dictionary, Jayadeva was Lakshman Sen’s court poet.

Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakur writes in his Nabadvipa-dhama-mahatmya that Lakshman Sen was delighted when he heard Jayadeva’s hymn to the ten incarnations, the Dasavatara-stotra. When Govardhan Acharya notified the king that it was Jayadeva who had composed the hymn, he became desirous to meet the poet. He went incognito to Jayadeva’s house and when he saw him, he noticed that Jayadeva possessed all the characteristics of a great and powerful spiritual personality. Deeply impressed and attracted to Jayadeva, the king revealed his identity to him and invited him to come and live in the royal palace. Jayadeva was leading a very renounced life and was therefore unwilling to live in the opulent environment of the palace. He told the king that he preferred to live in Jagannath Puri.

Lakshman Sen was disappointed by Jayadeva’s intentions. He quickly suggested that he take up residence in the village of Champa Hati, saying that it was a place suitable for a person who wished to lead a meditative life. He also promised him that he would never come to disturb him again. When Jayadeva agreed, Lakshman Sen had a cottage built for him in the village that was formerly known as Champaka-hatta, named after the beautiful garden of champa trees and the village market where Mahaprabhu’s associate Dvija Baninath received a vision of Him in the Satya Yuga, seeing Him in the form of a Brahmin whose skin was the color of champa flower. Similarly, Jayadeva had a vision here, first of Radha-Madhava, then of Their combined form as the golden champa-colored Gauranga Mahaprabhu.

After the Lord gave Jayadeva this vision, He told him to go to Jagannath Puri. Although Jayadeva was sad to leave the future abode of his Lord, he obeyed the Lord’s command and made his way to Puri, where it is said that he was engaged as the king of Orissa’s court poet. He spent the remainder of his life in the abode of Lord Jagannath, where he wrote the transcendental poem based on the sentiment of love in separation known as Gita-govinda or Astapadi. Indeed, Mahaprabhu told Jayadeva while giving him the vision of Nabadwip that after appearing there, He would take sannyas and go to Jagannath Puri where He would relish the Gita-govinda.

Further information about the life of Jayadeva is found in the preface to the Calcutta Basumari Sahitya Mandir edition of Gita-govinda: “sometime prior to the Muslim conquest of Delhi, King Manikya Chandra ordered the writing of the book Alankara-sekhara, in which Jayadeva is mentioned as the court poet of the king of Orissa. Sridhar Das, the son of one of the chief courtiers of Lakshman Sen, included many of Jayadeva’s verses in his anthology, Sad-ukti-karnamrta, citing a work named Amiyabha-kavya. The colophon to one ancient manuscript of the Gita-govindastates, “Jayadeva had a great reputation as a poet during the time of Lakshman Sen.”

 

Jayadeva’s Marriage to Padmavati

According to legend, Jagannath Himself ordered Jayadeva to marry his wife, Padmavati. The story is told in the Visvakosa as follows: there once was a Brahmin who was without offspring despite having worshiped Jagannath for many years in the hope of having a son. Finally, he and his wife had a daughter and they named her Padmavati. When she came of marriageable age, the Brahmin brought her to Lord Jagannath to offer her to his lotus feet. When He saw them, Jagannath said to the Brahmin, “I have a servant whose name is Jayadeva. He has given up family life and has dedicated himself to chanting My names. Give your daughter to him in marriage.”

The Brahmin took his daughter to Jayadeva and asked him to marry his daughter. However, since Jayadeva had no desire to get married, he refused to agree to any such arrangement. The Brahmin then told him that it was Jagannath Himself who had arranged this marriage; and without another word, he left, leaving his daughter behind. Jayadeva found himself totally unprepared for this situation and told the girl, “Tell me where you want to go and I will take you and leave you there. You cannot stay here.”

Padmavati started to cry and said, “My father brought me here to marry you on Jagannath Deva’s order. You are my husband, my all in all. If you do not accept me, then I will fall down at your feet and die right here. You are my only hope, my Lord.”

The poet and scholar Jayadev could not abandon her after such a heartfelt plea. So he became a householder.

 

Jayadeva Goes to Vrindavan

[Later], Jayadeva took his deities Radha and Madhava with him, and set off on the long journey. Once in Vrindavan, he began to serve his deities in an area near Keshi Ghat. When the residents of the Dham heard Jayadeva sing the Gita-govinda in his sweet voice, they were entranced. One merchant built a large temple for the deities on that site.

It is said that Jayadeva returned to his birthplace in Kendubilva after living in Vrindavan for many years. He spent the rest of his life there, worshipping his deities and performing his bhajan. He would make the long walk to the Ganges every day to take his bath there. One day, for some reason or another, he was unable to make it. Ganga Devi was so kind to him that she came personally to the village of Kendubilva so that he would bathe in her holy waters. It is said that Jayadeva died in Kendubilva and every year on the first day of the month a Magh, a large festival, is held there in his memory.

There is, however, a difference of opinion about where Jayadeva finished his life. Though some say he returned to Kendubilva, others claim it was Puri, and still others say that he went to Vrindavan. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Goswami Thakur has stated his opinion that Jayadeva left this world from Jagannath Puri. Though some people say that Jayadeva returned to Kendubilva to spend his last days, there is no indication anywhere that he brought his Radha-Madhava deities with him. In fact, these deities were taken by the king of Jaipur to a place named Ghati sometime after Jayadeva’s passing away and they are still being served in the Jaipur area.

Jayadeva’s disappearance day is on the sixth day of the waning moon of the month of Paush.

[Excerpted from “Sri Chaitanya: His Life & Associates” by Srila Bhakti Ballabh Tirtha Maharaj]

For Srila Jagadisa Pandita’s Appearance Day

“Sri Jagadisa Pandita is the saviour of the world. He distributes the nectar of love of Krsna just like a dense mass of dark clouds in the sky distributes rainfall.” [C.c. Adi 11.30]

Sri Jagadisa Bhatta took his birth in the region of Gaihati. His father’s name was Sri Kamalaksa Bhatta, who was the son of Bhatta Narayana, who hailed from Goyghar Bandyaghata. Both the mother and father of Jagadisa were very devoted Visnu-bhaktas. After his parents passed away he came with his wife to live on the banks of the Ganges. His wife’s name was Dukhinidevi. (His younger brother Mahesa also came with him to reside on the banks of the Ganga.) They built their house near the home of Jagannatha Misra.

Sri Gaurasundara instructed Jagadisa to preach Hari Nam at Nilacala. Thus he took shelter of the lotus feet of Lord Jagannatha. At that time he prayed at the feet of Lord Jagannatha and was rewarded by obtaining a Deity of the lotus-eyed Lord. This he brought to Yasora, on the banks of the Ganga near Cakdaha. This Deity was brought suspended from a staff which is still being worshiped in the temple of Lord Jagannatha at Jasora. This temple is presently under the charge of Sri Gaudiya Math, and is a rickshaw ride away from Cakdaha railway station, on the Sealdah-Krsnanagar line.

Lord Caitanya and Lord Nityananda sometimes used to go to Jasora to have festivals of sankirtana. Jagadisa Pandita’s son was Sri Rambhadra Gosvami. In the temple are Deities of Sri Jagannatha Deva, Sri Radha-Vallabhaji and Sri Goura-Gopala. It is said that the Goura Gopala Deity was established by Sri Duhkhini Devi. The Deity is a golden colour.

After Lord Caitanya conducted a sankirtan festival at the home of Jagadisa Pandita, He planned to go to Nilacala. Duhkhini, however, knowing the Lord’s mind, was very distressed by feelings of impending separation. At that time Mahaprabhu gave her this Deity and said, “I will eternally remain in your house in the form of this Deity.” From that day this Deity of Gaura-Gopala is being worshipped there. In Gaur-ganoddesa-dipika it is revealed that Jagadisa and Hiranya were wives of the Vedic brahmanas in Krsna lila. According to another opinion, “He who was previously known as Candrahasa, a famous dancer in Krsna-lila, is now famous as Jagadisa Pandita, who also takes great pleasure in ecstatic dancing.”

On one Ekadasi day, the young Sri Gaura Hari wanted to eat rice from the house of Jagadisa and Hiranya. The Lord said to His parents, “If you don’t want Me to die, then immediately go to the house of two brahmanas by the names of Jagadisa and Hiranya, with whom I am very pleased. They are both fasting for Ekadasi, but they have prepared some offerings for Lord Visnu. If you can obtain some of that Visnu-prasada then I’ll recover my health and be able to move about.” [C.B. Adi 6.20-23] One day, child Gaura Hari was crying incessantly. His parents told him, “First tell us what you want. We’ll bring it, but please don’t cry.”

He replied, “On this Ekadasi day in Jagadisa and Hiranya’s house are many preparations of Visnu-prasada. If I can eat that then I’ll be alright.”

Hearing this impossible request of her son, Saci Mata put her hand on her head and began to lament. Upon hearing the words of the child, the neighbours laughed in amazement. “How is it that such a young child as this is aware that today is Ekadasi?”

Then the ladies told Him, “Bap Nimai, don’t cry anymore, we’ll bring what you have requested.” When the two brahmanas heard of the child’s request they were very pleased. Both of them were very intimate friends of Jagannath Misra and they were well aware that the Supreme Personality of Godhead Sri Hari had appeared in his house. Therefore, whatever they had prepared for Lord Hari they brought before Sri Gaura Hari and told Him, “Bap, Visvambhara! We have brought everything which You requested. Now please eat it in great happiness and don’t cry anymore.”

Bhagavana Sri Gaurasundara, along with His friends, then enjoyed that feast. While doing so, He showed His transcendental form.

by Srila Bhakti Ballabh Tirtha Maharaja

For Lord Nityananda’s Appearance Day

The Magnanimous Nature of Sri Nityananda Prabhu

by Srila Bhakti Raksaka Sridhara Maharaja

Today is the appearance day of Sri Nityananda Prabhu. He is supposed to be thenityananda incarnation of Baladeva in Vrajamandala. Narottama das Thakur says ‘Balaram haila Nitai’. Sanatana Goswami also mentions Nityananda Prabhu as the incarnation of Baladeva in Vrndavana, but some persons within the Gaudiya sampradaya preach that Nityananda Prabhu is the incarnation of Radharani.

So, a vehement protest is given from the side of the Gaudiya Math and we cannot recognize them as the true followers of Gaudiya Vaisnava faith and Mahaprabhu. Nityananda Prabhu took His birth in the district of Virbhum on the Western side of Katwa, north west of Ekachakra, where the Pandavas in disguise lived for sometime.

Nearby is also shown a tree where the Bakaraksasa was killed by Bhimasena. In Ekachakra near Garbhavasa and many other places, we can trace the pastimes of Nityananda Prabhu.

Nityananda Prabhu’s son establised a temple nearby, and Sri Murtis were installed by Him. About two hundred years ago there was a great storm in that area and many ancient arrangements were devastated. A big Zamindar and devotee of the Gaudiya Sampradaya came and restored the puja, the worshipping arrangements at Virachandrapura. All were desolated at that time.

Nityananda Prabhu’s mother’s name was Padmavati, and His father’s name was Hadai Pandit. Ojha was their title although now we do not find any such title.

When Nityananda Prabhu was about 12 years old one sannyasi came and begged Hadai Pandit for his son “I want your son.” The sannyasi came and begged for the child, only one son, and son like Nityananda Prabhu who was very charming. It was almost impossible to live bidding goodbye to such a son, but what to do? A sannyasi has come and asked for him and begging they could not avoid; they could not avoid the sannyasi, they had to give their only son to him. We are told, that sannyasi was no other than Sri Madhavendra Puri, the guru of Iswara Puri, Advaita Acharya, and Pundarika Vidyanidhi. That sannyasi came and took Nityananda Prabhu away from His house when he was only 12 years old; and Nityananda Prabhu wandered with him through the whole of India, visiting all the holy places.

Mahaprabhu did not visit so many holy places. He generally travelled through the south of India, not northern India entirely, only Vrndavana and Prayag. Dvaraka and Badrinarayana were excluded by Mahaprabhu, but Nityananda Prabhu visited all the holy places that exist in India. After Madhavendra Puri disappeared, he was wandering in the holy places. In the meantime Mahaprabhu coming back from Gaya began his Sankirtana Lila in Nabadwipa.

Nityananda Prabhu was wandering here and there and lastly he went to Vrndavana. He was searching for something because of His inner identification with that of Baladeva. When Krsna came he was feeling some tendency of attraction towards him. In the last period, he began searching in Vrndavana very scrutinizingly but did not find that. Then he got some inspiration, “Where to find Krsna?” ‘He is now in Nabadwip,’ “I shall go there,” with this inspiration in his heart he came to Navadwipa Dhama.

Mahaprabhu had already begun his sankirtana movement, and he had a dream at night that someone came in a chariot and at the peak of the chariot there was a palm tree; and he is searching, “Where is Nimai pandit’s house? Where is Nimai Pandit’s house?” Someone then said, “Here is Nimai Pandit’s house.” Mahaprabhu then told to the devotees, “A great personage has come here to Nabadwipa Dhama last night. You (Srivasa and others) try to find out that great person.” The followers tried their best, they searched in every nook and corner but could not find Nityananda Prabhu. They reported to Mahaprabhu “we tried our best but could not trace any noble person, any saint, or any big man.

“Then Mahaprabhu told, ‘Let us try with the followers.” He then went straight to the southern side of Nandana Acharya’s Bhavan. Mahaprabhu went directly to a particular house which is known as Nandana Acharya’s house, and there they found a new gentleman, stout and strong, and golden in appearance, sitting on the veranda of that house. The devotees of Mahaprabhu could then understand him to be the man of whom Sri Gaurangadeva was telling about. He was sitting there in red robes, all others were white dressed. Someone then chanted some Bhagavata sloka, and so many spiritual symptoms gradually appeared in his body.

They could then understand what a great man he is for he was filled with divine love. He was the agreed personage and gradually coming in intimate connection with him they could understand that he was Sri Nityananda Prabhu. Outwardly his movements were not like a scholarly person, or an ordinary man; he was surcharged with a high type of energy and divinity coming forth from his complexion.

Mahaprabhu gradually began preaching, Haridasa Thakura and Nityananda Prabhu were both given orders. “Go from door to door and request them to leave everything aside and take the name of Krsna. Whomever you may meet going from door to door, approach and ask them to take the name of Krsna leaving aside everything else.” At that time Nabadwip Dhama was mostly filled with trantrics, that is the worship of Sakti Devi and Maya Devi.

“This Maya is disturbing us, so we must take shelter under her feet. When she will be satisfied then she will loosen, open the door and we will get out and become Siva. By nature, by birth, jiva means Siva, Siva means the master of Maya. We are now in the clutches of Maya, misunderstanding. When the goddess of misunderstanding is satisfied with us, she will then withdraw and we shall find a door out, we shall go to the other side.

There are so many liberated souls there and we shall join them. They are all enjoying the position of Siva, the master of Maya. Maya cannot force them to do anything and everything as she wills, rather she serves her masters. Maya serves Siva, the liberated souls. Maya serves them though in the relativity of Maya, but they cannot control so they render some service to the liberated souls and they are known as Siva. Pasa baddho bhavet jiva pasa mukta Sadasiva.

When within bondage he is jiva, a fallen soul, when he is outside the bondage of this Maya, this misunderstanding, then he’s always Siva. He can then move here and there at his sweet will and Maya cannot force him, rather she will come to serve him, and that is liberation. We shall then serve Maya devi, and the tantric process involves something, in this way she will be satisfied.

They use many things, they may drink wine and eat meats. They offer them to the deities Maya, Sakti and Kali. They also enjoy the women in different moods. They think that the application of mixing with ladies is such, that they will get liberation from the charm of the ladies. In this way in their process, they approve of the wine, the meat and the ladies it seems to be very harmful to us but these are the underlying principles of the tantric upasana.

In our method, our process of approaching these things which we feel temptation for, we shall get liberation from them. They come to attract us towards them but by a particular process we shall handle them. We shall be masters of those poisonous things, and at that time Navadwipa was filled with such persons.

When Mahaprabhu, Sri Gauranga begun his preaching attempt that everyone should give up everything and take to the name of Krsna, Narayana, he then said, “Not only will you, be out of Maya but you will attain positive life in Vaikuntha, in Vrndavana.” That is higher attainment, and what is to be attained by worshipping the sakti in the method they are following, that is reactionary and sometime again they will have to evolve. This is mentioned in the sastra, but not very extensively. If you are very particular, then you will have to see that in the relativity of this negative world; but it is not safe.

You must enter the positive world then you will be safe. That is not only mere liberation, emancipation from the opposite forces, but practical participation in the serving line, which is very pure. Not to be non-selfish, but must be God-centred, God-serviced. The positive world is there and that is full of pervasive happiness, and that we can attain only through service. Here we are an enjoying unit, an exploiting unit, but it must be given up to get out of the reactionary tendency of life; but we must not wait on the fence, for that is not a safe position.

Then again, that is not paying much because withdrawal from the negative side is not enough. There is a positive world and that is meant for a real high form of life, and that can be attained through service. Service is great, to sacrifice ones own interest, not for any part but for the whole, the absolute good, that is great. Nothing can be compared to that. It is calculative and automatic. To reach the automatic stage of service with love is high pay; so give up all these habits and these former engagements with a lower standard of worshipping, penance and all these things. “Die to Live.” A radical change must be welcome in life.

Life is worth living, life is worth living and it is only open to the human section. In other species it is impossible to get a glimpse of such high light and to begin that way of life, for there are only a very few human beings in the creation. What are the number of human bodies, very small compared to the whole of creation, and that is the door to heaven so you must try to have a positive life. He is Krsna, He is all attractive, He is beautiful, He is the highest reality, He is all accommodating and most charming.

Our life will receive its fulfillment if we can approach that Lord, especially by taking His Holy name. In this age of Kali a special sanction has been given to us that by taking the holy name with satsanga, with the real saints, then we can make progress, enter and approach that high line of preaching.

Nityananda Prabhu was a dynamo of energy and Haridasa Thakura could not follow, a little trouble to carry out the order of Mahaprabhu, what to do?

One day there were so many gunda type persons, they came with an attacking spirit, “You are disturbing us, we are not religious and you have come to preach religion to us; what right have you got? Why do you come to disturb us? As a big society we are following a particular creed, and you are so bold as to blame us for not been religious men. You have come with a new idea of religion and we are to accept that, you fools!

If again you come here you will be taught a good lesson.” In this way they were threatened, but Mahaprabhu still says you must go. Then one day they met Jagai and Madhai. Jagai and Madhai were from Brahmin birth but they did not have any care for religion. They were also entrusted with some administration in the Muslim Government. They had some connection with the Government and they themselves were gundas, although Brahmins by birth. They used to take anything and everything. They were a notorious pair of gundas, Jagadananda and Madhavananda.

Then one day they met him “Oh! You rogues, we have heard of you, you have come to create a new religion here – Never! If we find you again on the street you will receive a licking and will have to weep.” Anyhow, they were given such warning. Nityananda Prabhu had to report every day what progress they had made in their preaching campaign and he almost challenged Mahaprabhu. He said “our life was saved today from the worst pair in the whole of Navadwipa Dham, but if you can deliver them, then I shall think that you have really come to render some service.

They are the greatest rogues ever found in this area and must be converted. If you can do that then we shall say that you have got some power with some objective, and you will be able to do something.” Mahaprabhu felt, “If it is Krsna´s will then everything will be possible.” They again went out preaching and they met those two gundas, Haridasa Thakura coming back and Nityananda Prabhu stood courageously. There was an earthen pot cast away after used on the side of the way. It was taken and thrown on the head of Nityananda Prabhu and his forehead was cut, blood oozing, Nityananda Prabhu standing.

Some person came to Gaurangadeva saying that Nityananda Prabhu was wounded by the rogues. Mahaprabhu very enraged and excited came there. There was blood oozing, “Who has caused this wound on the body of Nityananda Prabhu? I shall finish the whole town, come forward” Mahaprabhu was besides Himself. Then Nityananda Prabhu came, “No! No! Don´t be excited my Lord, in this incarnation we are not to use any force; remember it.” Nityananda Prabhu then reminded Mahaprabhu.

In the meantime there another man approached and told “No, no! They are red-clad mendicants what fame is there in striking them. They are not wholly established rich men or party men, only red-clad sannyasis – there is no credit by killing them or beating them,” and they took Jagai and Madhai away. Nityananda Prabhu then appealed to Mahaprabhu. “What to do, this is not proper. In this age in this time at this juncture what have we come to do, use force? Never!”

In the meantime Madhai came to hit Nityananda Prabhu but Jagai saved him by just opposing him and Mahaprabhu turned around suddenly, “You Jagai, you have protected my Nityananda.” Mahaprabhu then embraced him and Jagai fell at his feet and began to cry “Hare Krsna.” Mental transformation came in Jagai, then Madhai who was standing there said, “for this deed we are two, such a sin, and Jagai´s condition is such,” In that atmosphere his transformation also began.

Then Nityananda Prabhu came to recognize that in the same place with similar persons, one will gain and the other will fail and so he must also be saved.

Then Mahaprabhu said, “Nityananda Prabhu himself is pleading for you, and so you Madhai, you should also be absolved,” Mahaprabhu then embraced him, he also fell, began to weep, and took the holy name Krsna, and there was wholesale conversion of these two great demons. There was within minutes an uproar in the town. “Who is this Nimai Pandita, a scholar, so far we can understand but he is endowed with supernatural power. These two great demons, whoever they came across, or whoever would see them would enter their homes and close their doors, such demoniac persons they were, and they were converted by Nimai Pandita within one hour, what miraculous power.”

So in this way Nimai Pandit, got some footing there. Nimai Pandit is not an ordinary, he is not merely a scholar but he is endowed with some supernatural power, original power. Nityananda Prabhu was famous from that time. Although he was hit on the forehead and blood oozed still he had so much of an extraordinary, patient, forbearing and affectionate heart, that he recommended that gunda who had caused him mischief. Nityananda Prabhu´s position was very safe and very high, a divine position from that time. Nityananda Prabhu has neither an exploiting nor enjoying mood, he is wholeself given to Krsna. Sanatana Goswami has given this in his commentary: In the rasa lila of Krsna, Krsna was enjoying all the gopis, at that time Balarama also had his separate rasa lila.

It is also mentioned in Bhagavatam and other puranas, that Krnsa had His rasa lila and that Baladeva also had his rasa lila, but Sanatana Goswami has given the meaning. That is very fine, very subtle and very difficult to understand. Baladeva continued rasa externally, but in his heart he was making Krsna to participate in that rasa. He was not the party to enjoy the gopis. He is aloof, he is aside, he is only performing, managing the rasa lila with the gopis and Krsna. He is not only indifferent but with so much serving tendency and wholeself serving attitude.

In Vrndavan mandala in vatsalya rasa and sakhya rasa, they also have marriages, they have their sons, but not in any enjoying mood. There is union of men and women but not in an enjoying mood, or then they will have to be left here in the material world. Both parties meet and are united in a serving mood, that is particularly another type of mood, never an enjoying mood, or then they are not to be allowed to enter that domain.

They will be thrown here in the land of exploitation. When they go through the door of emancipation, liberation and enter Vaikuntha, from there also the exploiting tendency is eliminated, what avoidance! They are outwardly participating but internally in a serving mood. It may be impossible to think but it is such, not only the human form but also the birds and beasts, they are also apparently mixing in an enjoying mood, but really their mood is of service attitude. Such a wholesale transformation has to be effected in ones heart, mind and body, before wholly attempting to enter into that domain.

So Hegel said, “Die to live”, if you really want to live in that plane then you will have to die wholesale as you think you are in this life as flesh blood and bones. It is of opposite type, the purity is there, it can be measured; it is not non-scientific but it is really scientific. It is the process of “die to live”! And love is there, the dying tendency for the object of love, that is love proper otherwise it is imitation, it is hypocracy, it is conspiracy to ones own suicidal attainment. The pure thing is that if we have got faith for such divine conception of life then we should come to Bhagavatam, the last gift in the sastric world of vedic literatures.

Vyasadeva´s last gift in the world of vedic literatures is Bhagavatam. The Bhagavatam is so high, so high, prithi vite yata katha dharma nam chole. Our Guru Maharaj´s translation dharmah projjhito kaitavo all the words and tales that are running in this world in the name of religion, Srimad Bhagavatam says all is false, all is false, all is tampered with and not pure, not pure! The pure type of religion is not yet spoken. It is there, all self-centered, the current is towards the centre, not only selflessness but self sacrificing, self forgiving, self forgetfulness, in that way we are to start, we are to start, we are to go.

Sri Nityananda Prabhu came and appealed, “Come to Gauranga, He is the depot, He is the dynamo to send you there very easily. He sang these names of Gauranga on the banks of the Ganges.“Bhaja Gauranga, kaha Gauranga, laha Gauranga nam je jan Gauranga bhaje se amar pran; all you people come and take refuge under the divine feet of Gauranga, give up everything and come fall at the feet of Gauranga. Take His name, remember Him and throw yourself wholly at His disposal. He is my own life, I consider Him to be my life, my soul, my everything.” Nityananda Prabhu saying this began to roll at the door of the householders “Householders! You must do this.” He is rolling and crying, “Accept Gauranga, you don´t know what great benefit you will receive by doing this.”

He is rolling in the dust at the door of the householders with such an appeal. He came to the ordinary masses to give them shelter at the lotus feet of Gauranga, that is Nityananda Prabhu. He came to give Mahaprabhu even to Jagai and Madhai and he appealed to all from door to door to accept Gaurangadeva. You do not know what will be your prospect in life, the highest prospect in life! Nityananda Prabhu is our only hope, He is so benevolent, so generous, so gracious, that very easily we can draw his attention and we can get his recommendation. Gaurangadeva will not be able to disregard his recommendation, and when we have got the grace of Gauranga then the Radha-Krsna lila is within our fists. Nityananda Prabhu´s grace means to get Mahaprabhu´s grace within our clutches and to get Mahaprabhu, means to get Radha-Govinda, Vrndavana, and then everything is within our fists.

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Srimati Vishnupriya Devi

by Srila Bhakti Ballabha Tirtha Goswami Maharaj

On the holy occasion of the appearance day of Srimati Vishnupriya Devi (3rd February 2014),

The following is an excerpt from the book “Sri Chaitanya: His Life and Associates” by Srila Bhakti Ballabh Tirtha Maharaj. More information about this book.

sri-sanatana-misro’yad pura satrajito napa |
vinˆupriya jagan-mata yat-kanya bhu-svarupiˆi ||

He who was King Satrajit in Krishna lila was Sanatan Mishra in Chaitanya lila.
The mother of the universe, the incarnation of the Lord’s bhu-sakti,
is his daughter Vishnupriya. (Gaura-gaˆoddesa-dipika 47)

Krishna married Satyabhama, the daughter of King Satrajit and a Yadu princess. In Gaura lila, this same Satrajit became Sanatan Mishra and she became Vishnupriya Devi. All manifestations of Vishnu tattva have three energies, known as Sri, Bhu and Nila (or Lila). Lakshmipriya Devi is the sri-sakti of Mahaprabhu in his majestic Gaura-Narayan attitude; Vishnupriya is his bhu-sakti and Nabadwip Dham is his lila-sakti. Srila Gadadhara Pandit Goswami is the sakti of Gaura-Krishna, or Mahaprabhu in the mood of Krishna. Knowledge is of two kinds, apara vidya or material knowledge, and para vidya, or transcendental knowledge. Vishnupriya Devi is the personification of transcendental knowledge. Devotees worship her on her appearance day on the sukla pa cami of the month of Magh. On the same day, those materialistic persons who are seeking the perfection of knowledge of this world worship the goddess of learning, Saraswati. Vishnupriya Devi’s grandfather was Durga Das Mishra. Some people believe that Durga Das was Vishnupriya’s father. In the Prema-vilasa, the family of Durga Das Mishra’s descendants through Yadavacharya is known as Vishnupriya’s parivara.

Mahaprabhu’s marriage to Vishnupriya Devi

Vrindavan Das Thakur describes the birth of Gaura-Narayan’s sakti, Vishnupriya Devi, in his Chaitanya Bhagavat. Krishnadas Kaviraj Goswami has also mentioned the event in his Chaitanya Charitamrita.

In the Adikhaˆa, the death of Mahaprabhu’s first wife is described, and then his second marriage to the daughter of the court pandit. (Chaitanya Bhagavat 1.1.110)

Then he was married to Vishnupriya Thakurani, after which he defeated the Digvijayi Pandit. (Chaitanya Charitamrita 1.16.25)

For the materialistic person, the marriage of a man and woman is the source of bondage. When the Lord marries in imitation of ordinary mortals, it becomes a something quite different: it is a transcendental affair. By chanting and hearing about the union of the Supreme Lord with his divine energy, one is liberated from the material energy.

Whoever hears about the holy pastime of the Lord’s marriage will be liberated from his bondage to this world. Lakshmi sat beside the Lord and the house of Sachi was filled with light. (Chaitanya Bhagavat 1.10.110-1)

Whoever saw the Lord’s effulgent form on that day was freed from his or her sins and went to Vaikuntha. This is why the Lord is known as the merciful lord of the fallen. (Chaitanya Bhagavat 1.15.216-7)

Mahaprabhu spent an inordinate time absorbed in teaching his students on a trip to eastern Bengal, and Lakshmipriya Devi found it impossible to support his absence. So, meditating on his lotus feet, she departed from this world. When Mahaprabhu finally arrived back in Nabadwip, he consoled his mother who was deeply affected by the loss of her daughter-in-law. Sachi Mata then started looking for another wife for her son and consulted Kashinatha Pandit for that purpose. Kashinatha was a well-known matchmaker who is described in Gaura-gaˆoddesa-dipika (50) as having been the Brahmin in Krishna lila named Kulaka who was sent by Satrajit to arrange the marriage between his daughter Satyabhama and Krishna. He then went to the court pandit Sanatan Mishra to arrange the marriage between Mahaprabhu and his daughter, the devotionally minded Vishnupriya. Kashinatha said the following to Sanatan Mishra:

Give your daughter to Vishvambhara Pandit; it is a perfect combination. She alone is worthy of such a divine husband, while he deserves such a pious and chaste wife. Just as Krishna and Rukmiˆi were worthy of each other, so are Vishnupriya and Nimai Pandit. (Chaitanya Bhagavat 1.15.57-59)

From her early childhood, Vishnupriya Devi was always devoted to her parents and to Vishnu, taking her bath in the Ganges three times daily. She regularly saw mother Sachi there, paying obeisances and being blessed by her. In this way, Sachi already knew Vishnupriya’s good qualities, and so was happy to agree to accept her as a wife for her son. Buddhimanta Khan was a rich and wise friend of Nimai’s family who volunteered to bear the entire expense of his marriage. Once it had been decided that Vishnupriya and Vishvambhara would be married, an auspicious day and moment were fixed for the ceremony. With great pomp, the adhivasa rituals were carried out on the eve of the marriage. The Lord arrived at Sanatan Mishra’s house in a palanquin at dusk and Gaura and Vishnupriya’s wedding ceremony was performed according to both scriptural and popular traditions. On the following day, Vishnupriya joined her new husband on the palanquin and returned with him to his house. If one hears the eternal pastime of the wedding of Lakshmi and Narayan, then he loses his desire for the material relationship of enjoyer and enjoyed, for one comes to understand that Narayan alone is the supreme enjoyer of the entire universe. Buddhimanta Khan was fulfilled by receiving Mahaprabhu’s embrace and mercy. Vrindavan Das Thakur has further written the following about the wedding:

Some people of the pious women said, They remind me of Gauri and Shiva. Others said, It seems that they are Lakshmi and Narayan. Yet others said, No, they rather resemble Rati and Kamadeva. Some compared them to Indra and Sachi, and others to Rama and Sita. (Chaitanya Bhagavat 1.15.205-8)

Vishnupriya Devi after Nimai’s sannyas

When Mahaprabhu left home to go to Katwa and take sannyas, he was only 24 years old. Lochan Das Thakur has described Vishnupriya’s terrible feelings of separation in the days that followed his departure in the Chaitanya Ma”gala:

The earth splits from the sound of Vishnupriya’s crying: the birds and beasts, even the trees and stones shed tears when they heard it. Falling to the ground she would lament, crying out Why does my sinful life not end? In separation, her breath was like fire, drying her lips and her body trembled constantly. (Cm 2.14.15-6)

The Advaita-prakasa also describes how Vishnupriya lived her life in terrible separation from the Lord after his departure. Every morning, she would go for her bath in the Ganges with mother Sachi, after which she spent the entire day inside the house, never allowing the moon or the sun to see her form. Not even the devotees were allowed to see anything more than her feet, nor would anyone ever hear her voice. Constantly shedding tears and eating only Mother Sachi’s remnants, she became pale and thin. She took intense delight in the Holy Name, chanting all day long in solitude before a portrait of Gauranga, serving it as though he were present in it and surrendering herself to his lotus feet. In this way, she demonstrated the ideal character of a devoted wife as well as the forbearance spoken of by the Lord in his verse, taˆad api sunicena taror iva sahinˆuna, etc. Srinivas Acharya received Vishnupriya Devi’s blessing. He personally witnessed her devotion to Mahaprabhu in separation. Narahari Chakravarti has described this in his Bhakti-ratnakara:

Every day Srinivas would come to see her. He observed her daily activities, which are beyond description. She had completely renounced sleep, and if ever she closed her eyes, it would be while lying on the bare ground. Her bodily luster, which had formerly glowed more brilliantly than gold, had become dull and she was as thin as the waning moon on its fourteenth day. She set aside grains of rice to count the Holy Names she chanted, and would cook only this rice and offer it to her Lord. Of this amount, she would only eat a small portion. No one understood how she could remain alive. (BhaktiR09;ratnakara 4.47-51)

Jahnava Devi’s disciple Nityananda Das has also described the standard Vishnupriya Devi set for bhajan in his Prema-vilasa.

Listen, brothers, to the way which Isvari Vishnupriya would take the names of the Lord. By listening to this, you will get a feeling for the lila. Every day she would place two clay pots on either side of her, one filled with uncooked rice, the other empty. Each time she completed one mantra of sixteen names and thirty-two syllables, she would joyfully place a grain of rice into the empty container. She would chant in this way until three o’clock in the afternoon, and then would take whatever rice had accumulated and cook it. This is the only food that she prepared, drenching it with her tears before she offered it to the Lord. It is not possible to estimate how many names Mahaprabhu himself chanted, but he chanted all day and night. Similarly, his beloved wife Vishnupriya chanted incessantly through the day and the night. Such dedication to the Holy Name was not impossible for her, for the Lord had planted the seed of his power in her.

It is said that Vishnupriya Devi was the first to establish worship of a murti of Gauranga. This has been stated in Murari Gupta’s kaaaca:

prakasa-rupeˆa nija-priyaya
samipam asadya nijad hi murtim |
vidhaya tasyad sthita ena kanˆa
sa laknmi-rupa ca ninevate prabhum ||

Krishna came to his beloved wife in this expansion form to remain by her side as the Mahaprabhu deity. Thus she, the incarnation of the goddess of fortune, was able to serve him constantly.

The devotees of Mahaprabhu sometimes said that just as Ramachandra, who had taken the vow of monogamy, performed a sacrifice to a golden Sita that he had had made during his exile in the forest rather than marry a second time, so Vishnupriya repaid her debt to her Lord in the pastimes of Gaura-Narayan by having an image of Mahaprabhu created so she could perform the sacrifice of the Holy Name to him. This deity is still present and worshiped in Nabadwip.

Sri Vamsivadana Thakur and Ishan Thakur were blessed by the service of taking care of Vishnupriya Devi and Sachi Devi after Mahaprabhu took sannyas.

For more articles on a variety of devotional topics by and about Srila Bhakti Ballabh Tirtha Maharaj and other Vaishnava authors, kindly visit the GOKUL website athttp://www.gokul.org.uk or http://www.sreecgmath.org For more information, or to subscribe to our newsletter, write to bhakti@gokul.org