SRI CAITANYA BHAGAVATA
Madhya Lila Chapter 1
All glories, all glories to Lord Visvambhara the crest-jewel among brahmanas, and all glories to the beloved associates of Lord Visvambhara.
All glories to Lord Gaura Candra, a stalwart amongst all religious preachers, the safe bridge to the spiritual sky - He has fully subdued His physical and mental urges.
All glories to Him; He possesses incomparable beauty and is the embodiment of the congregational chanting of the holy name of God.
All glories to Lord Gaura Candra for He is the dearest friend and life of Lord Nityananda Prabhu, and the sublime object of love for Gadadhara Pandita and Advaita Acarya Prabhu. He is very dear to Sri Jagadananda Pandita, and the tender loving heart of Vakresvara Pandita and Kasiswara. He is the Lord and master of Srinivasa and other beloved associates. O Lord, kindly look upon the living entities with divine benevolence.
The descriptions recorded in the Madhya-Khanda are like streams of nectar when they pour into the ears. They melt the granite-like doubts and atheistic thoughts in the deep recesses of the heart.
Please listen attentively and with unflinching faith as the narrations of Madhya describe the beginning of the congregational chanting of the holy name.
The entire township of Navadvipa offered jubilant and loud welcome to the Lord who had just returned from Gaya Dhama. Friends and relatives rushed to meet the Lord. The Lord spoke sweetly to everyone and they were overjoyed to see Lord Visvambhara return. They all accompanied the Lord, many of them going in front of Him. They brought Him to His house, and He began narrating the experiences of His pilgrimage.
The Lord said, "Because of all your blessings and good wishes I could visit Gaya Dhama and return without any difficulties. The Lord spoke very humbly, pleasing everyone and they were very impressed to see the Lord's humility.
The senior members touched the Lord's head and blessed Him with a long life. Others touched different parts of His body and chanted mantras for His protection. Others put their heads on His chest and invoked the mercy of Lord Govinda and Sita Devi.
Nobody could describe the joy Mother Saci experienced when she saw her son return. Laksmi Devi glowed with happiness at seeing Her Lord's face, and the cloud of Her loneliness dissipated. The joyous news spread to His in-laws' house and touched them with jubilation. The Vaisnavas were especially happy, and they ran to see the Lord. To everyone the Lord spoke very humbly and softly, and taking leave of them He returned to His room. He took a handful of His intimate disciples and went inside to discuss more confidential topics about His pilgrimage to Gaya.
The Lord said, "My dear friends, I want to describe to you the wonderful places that constantly reminded Me of Lord Krsna. As soon as I entered Gaya, I heard the auspicious sounds of chanting and conch shells and bells; hundreds and hundreds of brahmana priests were chanting from the Vedas and were glorifying the lotus feet of the Lord Krsna and His place of pilgrimage where the Lord left His lotus feet impressions."
They said, "Welcome to the holy spot where the Lord washed his lotus feet. In previous ages when Lord Krsna visited Gaya, He washed His transcendental lotus feet. Mother Ganga has become glorious and holy from the touch of the waters from the lotus feet of the Lord, and Lord Siva holds that water on his head with the full realization that this is the water from the lotus feet of Lord Krsna. That is why this place of pilgrimage has become one of the holiest and known as 'Padapadma tirtha' or the pilgrimage where the Lord left the waters of His lotus feet."
As soon as the Lord repeated the name of Gaya Dhama or Padapadma tirtha, and remembered the lotus feet of Lord Visnu, incessant streams of tears poured down from His eyes. The Lord became extremely restless. Unable to control His spiritual emotions, He began crying out the name of Lord Krsna. So profuse were the tears of love of God that it watered an entire flower garden.
He sighed deeply, repeating Krsna's name. His whole body was covered with horripilation. He could not control Himself anymore. He shivered like an autumn leaf. Sriman Pandita and other devotees present were astounded at seeing this wonderful manifestation of love of Krsna. The devotees could not remain unaffected. Tears swelled up in their eyes and flowed freely and unrestrained as though Mother Ganga had found another source.
They all thought in their minds, "What a sight this is. We have never seen the Lord acting like this; this must be the great mercy of Lord Krsna that He has allowed us to see such spiritual emotions." After a while the Lord became still, and external consciousness returned to Him. He began to speak again, "My dear friends! Please return to your homes today, but I want to see all of you tomorrow and discuss very confidentially. I want to disclose the deep sadness in My heart. Come to Suklambara Brahmacari's house with Murari and Sada Siv."
Everyone returned to their homes and the Lord became engrossed in His own world. The spirit of love of Godhead had now manifested in the body of the Lord, and He had lost all taste for anything mundane. Mother Saci could not understand this new transformation that had overcome her son, but nevertheless she was happy just to have Him near her. She saw her son crying out Krsna's name, and tears of love of Godhead flowed profusely from His eyes. The Lord cried out, "Where is my beloved Krsna, where is my beloved Krsna?" This increased His mood of separation in love of Krsna.
All such activities of the Lord were incomprehensible to Mother Saci, so in great awe with folded hands she prayed for the shelter of Lord Govinda. The time had dawned when Lord Caitanya was to reveal His real identity - the entire universe swayed with the waves of joy. News spread to all the devotees of the Lord that Lord Caitanya was constantly shedding tears of love of Godhead, so they all ran to meet Him. All the Vaisnavas visited the Lord. The Lord treated them humbly and spoke with everyone.
He requested of the Vaisnavas: "Please come and meet Me in Suklambara Brahmacari's house tomorrow, I want to open My grief-ladened heart to all of you."
Sriman Pandita was extremely happy when he saw this wonderful transformation in the Lord - His extraordinary love of Godhead. The devotees as usual went early in the morning to pick flowers. In Srinivasa's house there is a jasmine tree, which was like a wish-fulfilling desire tree. No matter how many flowers were picked from the tree, the tree was never empty of flowers. It had an inexhaustible bloom of fresh flowers. So all the devotees as usual met during the flower picking and they exchanged words on topics about Krsna and His wonderful pastimes; every morning they, Gadadhara, Gopinatha, Rama and Srinivasa enjoyed each others' company.
Just then Sriman Pandita came laughing with joy and everyone greeted him saying, "Why are you so happy today?" Sriman said, "Certainly there must be a reason.' So they asked, "Why do you not say it?" Sriman Pandita began, "Then hear the reason: something most wonderful and most impossible has happened. Nimai Pandita has become a great Vaisnava devotee. I heard that He had returned from Gaya, so I went in the evening to meet Him. He spoke with everyone with a humble and very detached air, showing not the slightest sign of arrogance or insolence.
"Then He took us aside and began telling us about His pilgrimage and about Lord Krsna. As soon as He mentioned the lotus feet of Lord Krsna and 'Padapadma tirtha', His eyes flooded over with tears of love of Godhead. His whole body was overwhelmed with ecstatic symptoms, shivering, horripilation, and as soon as He cried out Lord Krsna's name, He fell to the ground unconscious. When He regained consciousness He repeated Krsna's name and began crying in separation from the Lord, as if Mother Ganga was flowing there.
"After seeing such an exhibition of sublime love of God, I am convinced in my mind that He is not an ordinary personality. When He became controlled and stilled, He told us that we should all come and meet Him in Suklambara Brahmacari's house today; and I should bring Sada Shiv Pandita and Murari along with me. There He will reveal the torment within His heart to us. Thus I have told you the reason for my joy, and the most auspicious news." Sriman's words gave much pleasure to all the devotees, and they loudly repeated Lord Hari's name. Srivasa Thakura commented, "May Lord Krsna increase our congregation."
The assembled devotees appreciated this mood of Srivasa Thakura, and happily they discussed topics on Krsna consciousness. The joyous sound that went around them was pleasing to the heart. The devotees blessed everyone saying, "May everyone be blessed by worshiping the lotus feet of Lord Krsna." Sriman Pandita then left this Vaisnava assembly and proceeded to Suklambara Brahmacari's house.
Gadadhara Pandita who had heard the discussions silently while everyone was picking flowers, also went towards the house of Suklambara Brahmacari while the others went to perform their daily worship of the Lord. Gadadhara Pandita thought, "Let me go and hear what He speaks about Krsna." He entered the house and hid himself. Sada Shiv, Murari, Sriman, Suklambara and other such highly advanced loving devotees had already assembled there.
Just then, Lord Visvambhara, the crest-jewel of the brahmanas appeared in the assembly. They greeted each other happily, but the Lord was all the time engrossed within Himself. As soon as He was in the assembly of Vaisnava devotees He began reciting different slokas.
He said, "I had found my beloved Lord, but then He disappeared. In which direction did He go?" Saying these words He fell down completely paralyzed. The Lord embraced the pillars of the house and began crying out, "Where is Krsna?" and then again fell down. The devotees became affected by the Lord's intense mood of separation from His beloved Lord Krsna. He constantly repeated, "O Krsna, where is My Krsna?" and the devotees became intoxicated in that mood, and they swayed and ...... about the room.
Gadadhara Pandita inside the room, unseen by anyone, fell down unconscious. The devotees lost all sense of direction and identity, nobody knew where they were. They became so overwhelmed with love of Krsna that all external consciousness was lost in them, and Jahnava-devi, Mother Ganga was amazed at the whole spiritual scene. After a while, consciousness returned to the Lord, and He again repeated Lord Krsna's name, and began crying bitterly.
It was a wonderful scene, everyone had lost themselves in an ocean of ecstatic bliss of love of God. The Lord fell repeatedly and continuously lamented, "O my beloved Lord Krsna, where did You go?" In this ecstatic mood the Lord fell many times to the ground unconscious, but no bruises or pain were visible on His transcendental body. Loud jubilant cries and weeping in love of Krsna reverberated through the entire house, and Suklambara's home became surcharged with the ecstasy of love of Godhead.
After some time, the Lord calmed Himself and sat down, but tears of ecstatic love flowed unrestrained from His eyes. He asked, "Who is inside the house?" Suklambara Brahmacari replied, "Your beloved Gadadhara Pandita." Gadadhara Pandita entered with his head down and his unchecked tears flowed profusely in torrents. This pleased the Lord beyond words. The Lord said, "Dear Gadadhara! You are most fortunate and pious because from your childhood you developed unflinching love for Krsna, but My life has been wasted so far in useless pursuit of material knowledge. Then finally when I found the most precious object of love, He disappeared as a result of my previous impious and profane activities."
Saying this, the Lord Visvambhara again fell unconscious to the ground, and the dust covered His entire body. Later His external consciousness returned, and then again He fell unconscious, totally lost in ecstatic separation from His beloved Lord Krsna. It was certainly the grace of God that the Lord was not hurt. It became impossible for the Lord to open His eyes because they were brimming with tears of love of Krsna, and the only words He repeated were Krsna's name.
He embraced everyone and cried bitterly and asked, "Where is My beloved Krsna?"
"My dear brothers, please tell Me quickly." The devotees were greatly moved to see His intense pain of separation from Krsna. They remained dumbfounded and lost for words.
The Lord said, "Please release Me from this grief. I only need the son of Nanda Maharaja, the Lord of the Gopis. I need Lord Krsna."
Saying this He fell down again, His hair loose and mingling in the dust. The day passed unnoticed by anyone, and finally the Lord bade farewell to all the devotees.
After the Lord had departed, the devotees spoke openly expressing their surprise. Each one had marveled at the Lord. Their external senses and bodies had become numb. The entire Vaisnava community was overjoyed at the new turn of events.
The word spread quickly, and it was received by all the devotees with great joy, and spontaneously they responded by chanting the holy name of Krsna. They could not restrain their amazement and made comments like, "He will reveal God to everyone." Someone else said, "When Nimai Pandita feels a little better in this condition, then He can easily break the heads of atheists."
Another commented, "I have no doubt that He will reveal to the world the most confidential pastimes of Lord Krsna." Another commented, "Perhaps, because of His association with a pure devotee like Isvara Puri, He saw the Supreme Lord Krsna." Endlessly they tried to find a possible reason for the Lord's transformation.
The devotees were very happy about Nimai Pandita's condition and they all blessed Him saying, "May He be blessed with the mercy of Lord Krsna." The devotees were truly very happy; they danced, sang and cried tears of love with new life.
While the devotees were happily engaged in dancing and singing, the Lord became totally immersed in His mood of ecstatic absorption. He went to the house of Ganga Dasa Pandita. He offered His respects to the feet of His teacher, and His teacher got up and affectionately embraced Him. Ganga Dasa Pandita said, "What a glorious life! You have liberated both the families of Your mother and father. All Your students have been awaiting You anxiously. They have not opened their books since You left, and even if Lord Balarama had come in person and told them to read, they would have refused. You have returned to brighten everyone's days, but go home now and tomorrow come back and begin Your teaching. The Lord again offered His obeisances to His teacher before He left, and all the students surrounded the Lord like many stars surrounding the moon.
He went to the house of Mukunda Sanjaya, and sat in the courtyard of the Durga temple. The whole household of Mukunda Sanjaya was overwhelmed with joy. The Lord embraced Purusottama Sanjaya and drenched him with tears of love. The ladies, elevated with joy, made auspicious sounds and the whole house reverberated with jubilant sounds. The Lord glanced mercifully at everyone, and returned back to the house.
He came and sat in the temple room, then affectionately bade everyone farewell. Whoever came to meet the Lord and spoke to Him went away bewildered, unable to comprehend the Lord's mood. No trace of previous arrogance or showing off His learning remained in the Lord's character. Everyone saw that He was completely detached and engrossed in deep meditation.
Mother Saci was completely at a loss; she could not understand her son anymore. She prayed constantly to Mother Ganga and Lord Visnu for her son's well being. She prayed, "O my Lord Krsna Candra, You have taken my husband. You have also taken my son. There is only Nimai who remains with me. O Krsna, I am helpless and alone, just grant me this one favor: let my child Visvambhara remain in the house healthy and whole."
Mother Saci would bring Laksmi devi and make Her sit in front of the Lord, and the Lord would stare without noticing Her. The Lord continuously recited slokas, and kept lamenting and repeating, "Where is Krsna? Where is Krsna?" At times when the Lord roared in ecstatic bliss, Laksmi-devi ran away in fear, and Mother Saci stood helpless and fearful. The ecstasy of love for Krsna kept Him from sleeping, and His unbearable separation from Krsna made Him sit up the whole night. As soon as He saw anyone, He immediately went inside Himself and did not exhibit any of the ecstatic symptoms.
Early every morning He went for His bath in the Ganga, and on His return from His bath He found the students waiting for Him. The Lord uttered only Krsna's name and nothing else, but the students could not understand their teacher in this mood. On the students' request, the Lord sat down to teach. The students sat down and opened their books, singing the Lord's name "Hari" as they used to. The son of Mother Saci, Nimai Pandita was greatly overjoyed at hearing His beloved Lord's name. He again became absorbed, forgetting His external senses, and He looked upon everyone with His merciful glance. Totally absorbed in Krsna, the Lord began explaining to His students; He told His students that the essential lessons of everything was Lord Krsna - all aphorisms, commentaries and dissipations were actually describing the glories of the Holy name.
The Lord said, "The only eternal truth is the Holy name of Krsna. Krsna is the only worshipable Lord in all the scriptures. Krsna is the Supreme Controller and Maintainer - the Lord of the entire creation. Lord Siva, Lord Brahma and every other deity are His servants. Whoever tries to explain anything without describing the lotus feet of Lord Krsna, is in illusion. Their words are untrue and their birth is useless. The entire Vedanta and all the agamas and other philosophical treatises point out that devotion to the lotus feet of Krsna is the only and ultimate goal.
"All the mundane scholars are mezmerized by the illusory potency of the Lord, and they are totally lost because they cannot find shelter at the lotus feet of Krsna. Lord Krsna is an ocean of mercy, and He is the life and soul of every living entity. He is most dear to His surrendered souls, the dear son of Mother Yasoda. A person may be very familiar with all the scriptures, but if they have no attraction and attachment for the holy name of Lord Krsna, then they follow the path of destruction and hell. If a wretched and abominable person chants Lord Krsna's name, then even if they are most sinful, they reach the supreme abode of Lord Krsna after leaving this material world. This is the verdict of all the scriptures, and if anyone doubts it, then they are the worst sufferers. If anyone tries to explain the scriptures without having taken shelter of the lotus feet of Lord Krsna, then such a degraded person can never know the purport of the scriptures. They pretend to be teachers of the scriptures, yet they do not know the real purport of the scriptures. They are like a washerman's donkey carrying the load of all the scriptures. Such a soul is truly unfortunate because in spite of their education, they have forfeited the joy of Krsna consciousness.
"People in general are so foolish that instead of meditating on the Supreme Lord Krsna, they meditate on others, not knowing that the one Supreme Lord, Krsna offered liberation to the demoness Putana who had come to kill Him. Indeed, what greater pleasure can they receive than glorifying Lord Krsna, for didn't He redeem the demon Aghasura? That Supreme Lord Krsna whose name alone can purify the entire universe is known by the miserable living Lord Brahma who becomes overwhelmed with joy when he participates in the great festivities surrounding Lord Krsna. But these unfortunate souls disregard this, and sing and dance and revel in inauspicious mundane festivities.
"Intoxicated by wealth, high birth, education etc., they do not know the wonders of the holy name of Krsna that liberated Ajamil just by chanting the Lord's name once. My dear students and brothers, please hear Me carefully for everything I say is very true. You should just worship the lotus feet of Lord Sri Krsna, the most precious treasure. Laksmi devi always desires to serve these lotus feet, and Lord Siva has become a pure devotee just by taking shelter of them. These Supreme lotus feet are the ultimate source of Mother Ganga. So all of you, My brothers, please simply desire to take shelter of the Lord's lotus feet. Now I also want to send out a challenge to refute the explanations that I have just rendered."
Lord Visvambhara is the Supreme Absolute Truth and the embodiment of transcendental sound vibration, so whatever He speaks is the Absolute Truth. The mezmerized students listened to the Lord's words with individual attention, while the Lord spoke on as if in a trance, revealing the Absolute Truth. The Lord explained everything in light of Krsna consciousness, and He established a straightforward connection between every word and the Supreme Lord Krsna. This was an astonishing feat even for the Supreme Lord Himself. Lord Visvambhara soon became aware of His external words, and coming out of His trance, He became shy, wondering whether His students would think Him mad or something. So in order to cover it up, He said a few words. He asked the students, "How were My commentaries today?"
The students replied, "We could not understand anything. You have described Krsna as a purport to every word. Who is there who can understand Your explanations?" Lord Visvambhara laughed and said, "Listen my dear brothers, pack your books and let's go to the Ganga for a bath." The students put their books away and accompanied Lord Visvambhara down to the Ganga. They were all happy to be in the water playing and joking. Lord Visvambhara, surrounded by all His students, looked like the glowing full moon just rising out of the ocean. All those who saw the Lord frolicking in the waters were extremely pious and fortunate. Even Lord Brahma aspires to see the Lord like this, playing in the water. Everyone who had come to bathe kept looking longingly at the beautiful face of Lord Gauracandra. They said to each other, "How beautiful He is. His father and mother are truly blessed."
Mother Ganga could not contain the joy she experienced from the Lord's presence in her waters. Her waters swirled, sending out dancing waves of ecstasy. She was dancing with joy - she wanted to serve those lotus feet that are even desired by Ananta Sesa and all the demigods. So her many thousand waves washed the Lord's lotus feet. Only the Vedas know the truth about all such transcendental activities of the Lord and His devotees, and in the future someone will come and reveal these wonderful pastimes of the Lord.
Finishing His bath the Lord returned home and the students went back to their respective homes. He changed His clothes and washed His feet, and then offered water to the Tulasi plant. He performed His daily worship of Lord Govinda, and then came to take His meal. Mother Saci brought His plate with rice, Tulasi Manjari and other preparations. The Lord offered it to Visvakesara, and then the Lord of the entire universe began taking His meal. Mother Saci, the Mother of the Universe sat in front of the Lord as He ate. Meanwhile Laksmi-devi, the Goddess of Fortune remained inside unseen as She looked at the Lord.
Mother Saci asked, "My son, what book did You read today? And who did You have an argument with?" The Lord replied, "Today we read about the holy name of Krsna, and the glories of His lotus feet, the abode of all excellences. His name and transcendental qualities are eternal - chanting and hearing the Lord's name are also eternal. His surrendered servants and devotees are also eternal. That scripture is true and eternal that explains the process of devotional service to the Supreme Lord Krsna. Otherwise, such a book cannot be called a scripture - it is an atheistic and shallow book. The Vedic scriptures say, 'That scripture which fails to establish the process of devotional service is to be rejected. Even if Lord Brahma himself was to come and speak from it, one should never hear him speak.'
"If the lowest men in human society, the dog-eaters utter Krsna's holy name, then they are not the lowest of mankind; and a Brahmin born in a high family is not a Brahmin if he does not follow the principles of scripture and religion." Lord Visvambhara spoke to His mother just like Lord Kapila had spoken to His mother, Devahuti.
"Dear mother, listen to the wonderful influence of the process of devotional service to Lord Krsna. Try to develop in every respect, attachment to the Supreme Lord. The devotees of Lord Krsna can never be destroyed. Fearful death himself is afraid of a servant of the Lord. The excruciating pains of birth and death and living in the womb of the mother is never experienced by the Lord's devotees. All such sufferings are unknown to the devotee.
"Whoever refuses to worship the lotus feet of Krsna who is the Father of every living entity, is a great sinner, an enemy of their own Father; they become residents of Hell, birth after birth. My dear mother, please listen attentively about how frightfully a living entity suffers, if they are not willing to serve the lotus feet of the Lord.
"Again and again they have to enter the womb of their mother as a sinful creation. They are subjected to unbearable suffering in the womb. Everything the mother eats pains them. Whether it is spicy, salty or sour, they suffer - unable to do anything. They cannot protect themselves from the many worms and bacteria that nibble on their soft unprotected flesh. Unable to move, they suffer everything inside the hot and sticky womb. They live through this nightmare if their fate allows them to. There are some who are extremely sinful; they are condemned to die within the womb again and again.
"The living entity after remaining seven months within the womb, begins to gradually understand their position. They remember their previous birth and promise, and begin to repent for their mistake. They sigh and pray heedlessly to Lord Krsna, 'Oh Lord Krsna! Please save me! You are the life and soul of all the living entities.
"'You are the only shelter to turn to for the living entities in distress. Due to my forgetfulness, Krsna, I have been captured by Your external energy. Oh Lord, You who are the Lord of all the energies, please relieve me by an easy death. I have wasted my life chasing after illusory and temporary happiness such as family, children, wealth, etc., and I neglected Your priceless and eternal lotus feet.
"'The son who I raised so lovingly, and in a life of sin, where is he now? Where is everything? What have all my activities brought me? Who will save me from this untold suffering? My Lord, You are the only friend in this distress. Now I know that Your lotus feet are the only eternal shelter. O Lord Krsna, please save me. I take shelter at Your lotus feet. Oh foolish me, I have left such a merciful Lord as Yourself who is like a touchstone satisfying all desires, and I became mad after illusion, and forgot You.
"'For such a crime, my present suffering condition is a proper punishment, but now, Oh Lord, please be merciful to me. Grant me just this one favor: that I may never forget You or neglect Your lotus feet, that wherever I am, whether living or dying, I can always remember You. I do not want to be in that place where there are no assemblies of Your devotees. I do not even want to be in Indraloka, if they do not celebrate Your festivals.'
"The Srimad-Bhagavatam says, 'An intelligent person does not take interest in a place, even in the topmost planetary system, if the pure river of topics concerning the Supreme Lord's activities does not flow there - if there are no devotees engaged in service on the banks of such a river of piety - or if there are no festivals and sankirtana yajna to satisfy the Lord (especially since sankirtana yajna is recommended in this age). Better, Oh Lord, to live cramped up perpetually in an airtight mother's womb suffering constantly, if I can remember Your lotus feet there. But I never want to live in a place where I must forget Your lotus feet. O Lord, please be merciful, and never put me in a place like that.
"'So many millions of births I have suffered in this abominable position, Oh Lord. They were all due to my own sinful activity. Let me always remain in that precarious and suffering position, if You mercifully appear on the mirror of my memory, because You are the essence of all Vedic scriptures. Oh Lord, please offer me Your servitude, and keep me eternally at Your lotus feet, just like a sold-out slave. If this time, You relieve me from this painful condition, then I want nothing other than Your lotus feet.'
"In this way the living entity suffers unbearable pain within the womb, yet they still love this painful condition because they can still remember Lord Krsna. Praying to the Lord in this manner the devotee does not feel the pain anymore, and soon they come out of the womb unwillingly.
"Oh mother, please listen carefully to the position of the conditioned living entity. As soon as they enter this world they lose all of their knowledge. Sometimes they are sleeping as though unconscious, sometimes crying, breathing deeply. Unable to express themself, they are drowned in an ocean of suffering.
"The living entities are eternal servants of Lord Krsna. However if they turn away from the Lord, then they suffer the punishment meted out by the illusory potency of the Lord. After some years, knowledge and intelligence may blossom within, and then if one worships Lord Krsna they are truly fortunate and pious. But if, by the influence of bad association, they do not worship the lotus feet of Lord Krsna, then they fall down into the dark well of sin and suffering.
"The Srimad-Bhagavatam says, 'Therefore, if the living entity again associates with the path of unrighteousness, influenced by sensually-minded people engaged in the pursuit of sexual enjoyment or the gratification of the palate, then again they go to hell as before.'"
--------- [ Texts 237 to 263 are missing ] ---------
He continually chanted Lord Krsna's name, feeling great ecstasy and sometimes He laughed out loud, sometimes roared out loud, and sometimes His whole body broke out in horripilation. In this way different symptoms manifest within Him. When He sat down to teach, He connected the root of every single word to Krsna. All His purports and commentaries described Krsna. This new transformation in Him seemed to be so alien to us. "Please, Oh Master, please tell us what we can do?"
Ganga Dasa Pandita, the jewel-like teacher of Navadvipa, smiled after listening to the complaints of the students. He told them, "Go home now and return tomorrow morning. I will teach Nimai a lesson. I will ensure that He tutors all of you properly from now on. Be here with your books tomorrow morning to attend Nimai's class."
The students were relieved and happy, and came back the next afternoon to attend Visvambhara's classes. The Lord touched His master's feet with respect. Ganga dasa Pandita blessed his master's feet with respect, and Ganga dasa Pandita blessed Him saying, "May You become highly learned." Ganga dasa Pandita then said, "My dear Visvambhara, I must tell You something. You know that it is no small matter for a brahmin to be able to teach. It is a question of good fortune.
"Your grandfather is none other that Sri Vilambhara Cakravarti, and Your father Sri Jagannatha Misra, both great scholars. Neither of Your parents' families are illiterate, and You Yourself are a very able scholar with an exceptional faculty to give commentaries. Would You say that one achieves the path of devotion by giving up his education and learning? In that case, aren't Your parents devotees of the Lord? The only thing that I know is that You should learn and study properly, and only through proper education and learning can one become a Vaisnava brahmin.
"How can an illiterate brahmin develop the faculty for discriminating between good and bad, proper and improper? My knowledge tells me to chant Krsna's name and continue Your education. Go and teach the scriptures in the proper way, with the proper explanations, and do not try to misconstrue their meanings. It brings me tremendous anxiety."
The Lord replied, "By your grace, and the mercy of your lotus feet, there is no one in Navadvipa who can defeat Me in any argument? Who can refute My arguments, and then establish a new and original concept? I will go into town and teach. I would like to see who has the courage to find faults and mistakes in My commentaries."
The teacher, Ganga dasa Pandita was very pleased when Visvambhara offered His obeisances to His master and left. Ganga dasa Pandita is so fortunate and such an elevated personality, that his disciple offered obeisances to his feet, and his disciple is none other than Sarasvati devi, the Goddess of learning. For what more can Ganga dasa Pandita aspire? His disciple is the most worshipable Lord of the entire universe.
Lord Visvambhara walked down the street surrounded by His students, like the shining full moon against a velvet dark firmament surrounded by so many stars.
Lord Visvambhara, whose lotus feet are worshiped by Laksmi-devi within Her heart eternally, came and sat on the bank of the river Ganga. There He began His explanations and commentaries, establishing, refuting, and then reestablishing different points.
The Lord said, "In Kali yuga, the so-called scholar has no idea of conjugation, but receives the title of Bhattacarya. One who has no knowledge of philosophy, he has the audacity to debate, but none of these scholars can ever challenge Me. Whatever arguments I establish and whatever I refute, let Me see if there is anyone who can challenge this!" Like this, the Lord of the universe, Visvambhara boldly challenged everyone. And who was there who could take up that challenge?
The scholars who came to pay their respects to Mother Ganga heard Lord Visvambhara's bold words in fearful silence, their scholarly pride broken to pieces. Is there anyone in Navadvipa who could challenge Visvambhara in debate? The Lord continued to speak for four hours as if in a trance, explaining and giving commentaries. It was late in the evening, yet the Lord did not stop. Then the Lord visited another gentleman's house, and this happened to be the house of a very pious brahmana whose name was Ratnagarbha Acarya. He was a close acquaintance of Lord Visvambhara's father - both were born in the same village. He had three sons who were elevated devotees of the Lord, full of spiritual humour. They were like the bees which gather nectarine pollen from the lotus feet of Lord Krsna. Their names were Krsnananda, Jiva and Vadunatha Kavicandra. Ratnagarbha Acarya was a great devotee of the Lord and was very fond of the Srimad-Bhagavatam. He was now reading from the Bhagavatam with great respect and affection.
He read, "The wives of the Jaget brahmana saw a beautiful young boy. His complexion was darkish. He wore a golden yellow cloth. He was nicely decorated with flower garlands around His neck - a peacock feather slanted sideways out of His crown where precious stones and metals glistened brightly like stars. He was with His friends. He stood leaning against a dear friend, His left hand on his shoulders, and with His right hand He twirled a beautiful lotus flower. His ears were decorated with earrings in the shape of lotus flowers. His cheeks carried decorative designs of sandalwood paste, and His sweet smile played on His lotus-like mouth." These words of the Srimad-Bhagavatam spoken with great devotion entered the ears of Lord Visvambhara. The devotion of the speaker affected the Lord, and as soon as He heard these words, the Lord fell down unconscious overcome with loving spiritual ecstasy.
All the students were amazed at the sight. After remaining in a trance for a while, the Lord regained His external consciousness. When He was able to speak the Lord said to Ratnagarbha Acarya, "Go on, Go on", and He rolled on the ground in ecstasy. The Lord urged him on saying, "Go on, Go on," and the brahmana continued to read, and everyone floated on the ocean of nectar-like love of Krsna. Unrestrained tears from the Lord's eyes flooded the entire world. All the ecstatic symptoms like shivering, horripilation and crying manifested in the Lord's person.
The brahmana was extremely happy and he continued to read the slokas with great inspiration. The Lord was very satisfied with the brahmana's devotion, and He embraced him warmly. Being touched, Ratnagarbha Acarya experienced immense bliss. He fell down and held the Lord's lotus feet crying, and from that moment he became trapped by the love of Lord Caitanya.
He continuously read the slokas from the Srimad-Bhagavatam, and the Lord responded roaring loudly, "Go on. Go on."
The people were completely amazed at this sight, and they realized that something extraordinary was taking place. Then Gadadhara Pandita intervened and told the Acarya, "Do not read any further." He stopped reading and they all sat down surrounding the Lord. When external consciousness returned to the Lord, He inquired, "Tell Me, what happened? Did I act very restlessly?"
The students replied, "What ability do we have to explain Your activities? All we know is that You are very fortunate." The Lord's friends and relatives discouraged them and said, "Do not praise Him like this." The Lord now withdrew His emotions within Himself, and He accompanied all the students to the banks of the Ganga. The Lord sprinkled some water on His head offering His obeisances to the Ganga, and sat down on her banks.
Nimai Pandita, the son of Mother Saci, sat with all the students discussing topics about Krsna, as Lord Krsna sat with all the young damsels of Vrndavana on the banks of the Jamuna. He spent some time with the boys, and then everyone returned to their respective homes. The Lord returned to His home and after His meal, He lay down to rest just like Maha-Visnu lies down for Yuganidram. After a good night's sleep the students returned early in the morning with their books to see the Lord.
The Lord went for His daily ablutions to the Ganga and upon returning, sat down with His students and began explaining and commenting on the different aspects of grammar. But all of His explanations and commentaries revolved around one subject only: Krsna, and the process of devotional service to the Lord.
The students inquired, "What is the definition of verbal roots?"
The Lord replied, "It is the energy of Lord Krsna. My dear students, I will now explain the aphorisms of verbal roots. Let Me see who can refute My explanation!
"There have been many kings with beautiful bodies, decorated with golden ornaments, flower garlands and sandalwood paste. People say that they are representatives of Laksmi, the Goddess of Fortune, and their words are the words of Yamaraja, the presiding demigod of religious principles. Let me explain to you what happens when 'Dhatu', or life, leaves their body.
"Where goes their physical beauty, their decorations, and their power? Some of them turn to ashes, and some become buried underneath the earth. Lord Krsna is present in everybody in the form of His energy 'Dhatu', or His life. Living entities love this, and they offer their devotion to Him. All these other so-called scholars and teachers are very confused. They do not understand the real meaning of 'Dhatu' or verbal roots. So all of you now listen attentively.
"The kingly personality who was for so long worshiped and respected, becomes contaminated as soon as life leaves him; and when his body is touched, one must take a bath. The son who spent happy hours on the lap of his father must touch fire to the dead father's mouth and burn his body to ashes. Therefore the definition of 'Dhatu' or essential substance, is the energy of Lord Krsna that is loved by everyone.
"Now I want to see if there is anyone capable of refuting this explanation. So the energy of Krsna is so pure, transcendental and worshipable - develop unflinching faith and devotion in Lord Krsna. Just chant Krsna's name, worship His lotus feet, and hear only the name of Lord Krsna.
"Spend all of your time meditating on the lotus feet of the Lord. Just take shelter of the lotus feet of the son of Nanda Maharaja, for if one simply worships the lotus feet with a little water and grass or a leaf then the demigod of death can never approach them. Just worship Him, He who has by killing Aghasura and Bakasura and Putana given them liberation. Ajamila at the point of death cried out his son's name, Narayana, and even after a sinful life, by worshiping the Lord's lotus feet and remembering the Lord, he gave up attachment for his son and went to the spiritual sky, the Vaikuntha planets.
"Simply take shelter of those Supreme lotus feet of Lord Sri Krsna. Lord Siva and Laksmi devi are always desirous of worshiping those lotus feet. Lord Ananta Sesa very humbly always glorifies the wonderful mercy of the lotus feet of Lord Krsna. As long as there is life within the body, and strength in the limbs and mind, take shelter of devotional service to the lotus feet of Lord Krsna. Krsna is your Mother - Krsna is your Father - Krsna is your very life and soul. Simply embrace His lotus feet and offer your mind, words and body completely to Him."
Lord Visvambhara who is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Sri Krsna explained the devotional mood of servitorship to Himself. He was unaware that it was already past noon, and still He continued. The students listened as if hypnotized with undivided attention. No one felt like disturbing or making contradictory remarks. One must understand that these students are not ordinary mortals. They are all servants of Lord Krsna. Otherwise how could they be personally taught by the Supreme Lord Krsna. After a while, Lord Visvambhara emerged from His trance and looked at everyone's face. Feeling a little ashamed and shy, He asked, "How were My explanations on verbal roots?"
The students replied, "You have revealed the truth to us; Your explanations on the word meanings are impossible to be refuted or contradicted by anyone. All of your explanations are eternal truths. However, the reference we use for our understanding complies with the present-day grammatical concepts of the so-called scholars. But we can understand that these are not the proper meanings."
The Lord said, "Can any of you explain how My wind disorders are influencing My mind? Instead of explaining the nature of verb roots, I do not know whose nature or what I am talking about!"
The students replied, "You have always described the glories of the holy name of God. All of Your commentaries and definitions and purports describe Lord Krsna and His transcendental potencies. Who can understand such esoteric subject matters? The transformation we notice that envelopes You as soon as You hear transcendental subject matters of Krsna-lila or His holy name are so wonderful that we cannot think of You as an ordinary personality."
The Lord inquired, "What sort of transformation did you see in Me?"
The students replied, "It was marvelous, the different emotions that played on You like shivering. Your tears, and Your entire body was covered with horripalations. We had never seen anything like this before. Yesterday we accompanied You to the bank of the river Ganga where You were explaining from the books to us. In one of those houses a brahmana was reciting a sloka, and You fell down unconscious as if the life air had left Your body. We were bewildered and amazed, and when You came out of Your trance, unrestricted tears poured out of Your eyes in streams like the flowing of the Ganga. Finally You began shivering so uncontrollably that even a thousand men could not have held You still. Horripilation covered You from head to toe, and You perspired profusely. You lay upon the ground as if You were a golden statue in the dust. Everyone present marveled at You, and they all said that He is the Supreme Lord Narayana. Some were saying that You were Srila Vyasadeva, Sukadeva Gosvami, Narada Muni or even Prahlad Maharaja. You were equal to them in receiving the Supreme Lord's mercy. All of us got together and tightly held You down, and gradually Your external consciousness returned. You do not know any of these details that we have just described. We want to tell You something more, please listen to us attentively.
"All of Your explanations on word meanings and aphorisms for the last ten days describe the process of devotional service to Lord Krsna and the glories of the holy name of Krsna. So for the last ten days, we have not been able to follow the lessons in the books. We were a little fearful to tell You this. Your profound erudition can explain unlimited meanings of words. It is truly amazing - no one can equal that feat."
The Lord replied, "Ten days without studies! Was it not your duty to tell Me about this?"
The students replied, "Your explanations were very correct: Lord Krsna is the eternal truth. This is the verdict of all the scriptures. Your explanations on the Supreme Absolute Truth is absolute education, and is the essence of all scriptures, but we were unable to understand them due to our own faults and limited intelligence."
These words greatly pleased the Lord. He gently blessed them and said, "My dear students, you have truly spoken the truth. My words are not meant for others. I am constantly seeing a little boy playing the flute. He has a blackish-blue glowing complexion. That is why you always hear Me speaking about Him. All that you have heard is actually the name of Lord Krsna, and everything that you see around you is the spiritual world, Goloka Vrndavana. Therefore, I shall teach no more. I give you complete freedom to go to anyone you might want to study under, because to tell you the truth, I cannot speak about anything other than Lord Krsna, His name and His pastimes. It will not be possible for Me to teach you anymore in this condition."
Lord Visvambhara then tied the books together and handed them to the students with tears in His eyes. The students then spoke up, "We have also decided according to Your desire to give up studies because once we have studied under You, where can we find another teacher who is able to explain and teach the way You do?" The thought of separation from their teacher was too heavy a burden for the students to bear, and they began to lament. They said, "Those explanations that we have heard from You, we want to treasure in our hearts birth after birth, to meditate upon them. What is the use of studying further, and who would we go to? All that we have learned from You is more than sufficient for us."
Overcome with feelings, and with folded hands they prayed to the Lord and then tied their books. The students were now extremely happy and they jubilantly shouted Lord Hari's name. Lord Visvambhara embraced His students and began to weep.
Everyone was drowned in the waves of joy. Their voices choked with ecstatic bliss. The son of Mother Saci, Lord Caitanya then blessed them saying, "If I ever become a true servant of Lord Krsna, then may all of your desires be fulfilled. All of you please take shelter of Lord Krsna, and always chant Lord Krsna's holy name. Try to hear Krsna's name always, and may Krsna become your most precious object and your very life and soul. Whatever you have studied so far, that is enough. There is no need to study any further. Now all of you get together and chant Lord Krsna's name in one place. By Krsna's mercy may the purport of all the scriptures manifest within you. All of you are my dear friends, birth after birth."
The words of the Lord were like nectar in the students ears, and they became extremely happy. I offer my obeisances unto the feet of all such students who are so elevated and fortunate to become the direct disciples of the Supreme Lord Visvambhara. All of them are eternal servants of the Supreme Lord Krsna. How could it be any other way - Krsna Himself personally taught them.
One is freed from material bondage just by seeing that person who has seen these wonderful scholarly pastimes of the Supreme Lord. What a miserable birth I have taken, that I was excluded from seeing such transcendental pastimes and sights of the Lord. Still I pray for Your mercy, Oh Lord, that Your pastimes in the mood of a scholar may remain eternally within my heart. The Lord of Vaikuntha appeared in Nadia to teach in the mood of a scholar. The signs of His appearance are still visible now.
The transcendental pastimes of the Lord are eternal and unlimited, without beginning or end. The scriptures describe His eternal pastimes as unmanifest and manifest. The Lord had now begun His pastime of congregational chanting the holy name which is the ultimatum of all learning and education.
The students were sad and weeping. The Lord was very moved and He spoke to them in comforting words, "Now you can fulfill the purpose of your studies by chanting and singing the holy name of Krsna."
The students inquired, "Oh Lord, we do not know how to perform this chanting or singing. Why do You not please teach us?"
The Lord began singing, "Hare haraye nama Krsna Yadavaya namah, Gopala Govinda Ram Sri Madhusudana". He clapped His hands and led the students in a beautiful kirtana.
Lord Visvambhara is the Lord of the chanting the holy name of Krsna, the propagator of the congregational chanting, and now He sang the Lord's holy name surrounded by His students. He was in an ecstatic trance tasting the intoxicating nectar of His own name, rolling on the ground oblivious to everything around Him. He repeated, "Sing on, Sing on", and kept falling on the ground. The earth seemed to split open each time He crashed to the ground.
The residents of Navadvipa, hearing the great commotion coming from the Lord's house rushed to that spot. When the neighboring Vaisnavas heard His loud kirtana, they quickly came to Lord Caitanya's house. The Vaisnavas saw the Lord's ecstatic trance, and they marveled deep within themselves. Feeling great happiness they thought that now at long last, kirtana has made an appearance in Navadvipa. Where in the entire universe is there the practice and propagation of such a rare devotional service? Such devotional ecstasy is the perfection of sight.
This very same Visvambhara had been the epitome of arrogance, but now the devotional ecstasy He manifested is rarely achieved even by Narada Muni and others. If such a degree of devotion is exhibited by such a vain glorious personality, I (we) do not understand the will of Lord Krsna, and how He can make this happen.
Sometime later, Lord Visvambhara emerged from His ecstatic trance, and simply repeated, "Krsna! Krsna!"
Although external consciousness returned, the Lord spoke nothing about this mundane world. He just embraced all of the Vaisnavas and cried. Finding the Lord agitated by ecstatic emotions, the Vaisnavas pacified the Lord. Feeling great joy, they then left the Lord's house.
Some of the Lord's students, infected by the Lord's love of God took to the path of renunciation, cultivating detachment from material existence and attachment to the lotus feet of the Supreme Lord Krsna.
The Lord, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu had now begun the congregational chanting of the holy name of the Lord. He had begun to freely and profusely distribute the nectar of His own holy name, thus washing away all of the sufferings of all the Vaisnava devotees.
Lord Sri Krsna Caitanya and Lord Nityananda Prabhu are my life and soul.
I, Vrndavana dasa, humbly offer this song at Their lotus feet.