SRI CAITANYA BHAGAVATA
Madhya Lila Chapter 3
All glories to Lord Visvambhara, the omnipotent Supreme Lord of all living entities! He is the beloved Lord of Nityananda Prabhu and Gadadhara Pandita. All glories to Lord Caitanya, Advaita Acarya Prabhu, and all the pure devotees of the Lord who have captured Him by their unalloyed devotion!
I, Vrndavana Dasa, am a very wretched and miserable person; so my dear Lord Caitanya, please instill within me the mood of devotion, and redeem me from this ocean of material nescience.
The devotees frequently floated on waves of transcendental bliss, seeing the manifestations of Lord Caitanya's ecstatic moods. Lord Caitanya's devotees were as dear to Him as His very life. Chanting Krsna's name and weeping bitterly in separation from the Lord, Lord Caitanya embraced His beloved devotees as they gathered around Him, crying in ecstatic joy of love of God.
The devotees, engaged in devotional service, experienced love of God in association with Lord Caitanya. Even stone-like hearts melted at the sight of the Lord's ecstatic manifestations. The devotees found no more interest in wealth, family, children, etc. Day and night they remained by the side of the Lord, chanting Krsna's name.
Lord Gauracandra became totally absorbed in love of Krsna. He exhibited different devotional moods, finding inspiration from the topics the devotees discussed. In the devotional mellow of servitude, He would cry for hours as if Mother Ganga had descended through His eyes. Then, in a jolly mood, He laughed for hours; and when He fell unconscious, He remained without breathing for several hours.
At times when He became aware of His Supreme Personality, He would, with real arrogance(?) say, "I am Him, I am Him, the Supreme Lord," and laugh. "Where is that old man, Advaita Acarya, the one who brought Me here from My spiritual abode? I will fulfill His desire and distribute love of Godhead to every home."
The next moment the Lord cried out, "Oh Krsna, Oh my beloved Lord!", and weeping, He would tie His feet with His long curly tresses. Then He repeated the sloka from the Srimad-Bhagavatam where Akrura came to take away Krsna and Balarama to Mathura. He fell to the ground like a stick offering His obeisances, as if He were Akrura. Absorbed in ecstatic trance, He said, "Oh Nanda, let us take Krsna and Balarama to Mathura and see the great festivals at the palace where they are performing the Dhama Yajna sacrifice." In this way, Lord Caitanya exhibited so many ecstatic moods. This gave unlimited joy to all of the devotees present there.
One day the Lord heard the pastimes of Krsna in His incarnation as a boar, Lord Varaha. Roaring He rushed to Murari Gupta's house. Lord Caitanya had a special love for Murari Gupta, just like Lord Ramacandra had a special love for Hanuman. When Lord Gauracandra arrived at Murari Gupta's house, Murari Gupta received the Lord with great respect, offering obeisances to the Lord's lotus feet. The Lord hurried past him shouting, "Boar, boar."
Murari Gupta was left dumbfounded, looking all around him. The Lord entered the temple room of Lord Visnu and saw a beautiful water pot standing in the corner. Just at that moment the Lord took the form of Lord Varaha. Absorbed in this mood, He lifted the water pot with His tusks, and roaring loudly like a boar He stood there with His four hooves.
The Lord ordered Murari Gupta, "Offer prayers to Me, Murari!" Murari remained dumbfounded. Amazed by this extraordinary sight, no words came to his mouth. The Lord then said, "Speak up, Murari, speak up. You do not have to fear. Do you not know My supreme identity?"
Trembling with fear, Murari pleaded with the Lord saying, "Oh Lord! You Yourself know how to glorify Yourself and offer prayers. Lord Ananta Sesa, who holds the entire creation on just one of His hoods, has manifested a thousand mouths to glorify You, yet He laments that He cannot find the limits to Your glories. Who is more capable of glorifying You than Ananta Sesa? The entire material universe follows the instructions of the Vedas, yet these very Vedas are unable to fully reveal Your transcendental, absolute nature.
"I have heard that there are an unlimited number of universes in this material creation, and that they all emanate from the pores of Your transcendental body.
"You are the fully independent Supreme Autocrat, and You are always blissful. How is it possible for the limited Vedic literature to describe the pastimes which You perform according to Your own sweet will. Therefore, Oh Lord, only You know Yourself fully; others can know You only if You reveal Yourself to them through Your causeless mercy. What ability do I possess to offer You prayers and glorify You?" Saying this, Murari Gupta fell flat on the floor offering obeisances to the Lord.
Lord Varaha was pleased with Murari Gupta's words. Then expressing anger at the Vedic literatures, He spoke out loud, "The Vedas have the audacity to say that I have no hands, no legs, no mouth, and no eyes! There is a mischievous sannyasi living in Kasi who teaches his students. That rascal tries to mutilate My transcendental form. He studies the Vedas and teaches others, but he does not accept My transcendental form. As a result of such blasphemy he was attacked by the dreaded disease leprosy, but he could not understand the import of it.
"I am the Lord of all sacrifices, the Supreme Lord Visnu. There are no imperfections in My transcendental form. Lord Brahma and Lord Siva are always engaged in glorifying My supreme transcendental position and nature. A mere touch of My body can spiritualize and purify everything; yet that rascal is so insolent that he proclaims that My transcendental form is non-existent. Carefully hear My opinion, Murari Gupta. I will tell you that which is not manifest even in the Vedas.
"I accepted the incarnation of a boar to lift the material world out of the waters of nescience. Know Me to be the ultimate goal of the Vedas. The purpose of My present incarnation is to propagate the congregational chanting of the holy name of Krsna. In this incarnation, as in other incarnations, I will annihilate the miscreants for the protection and pleasure of My devotees. I cannot tolerate My devotees being threatened or tortured. I will even kill My own son to protect My beloved devotees. This is not a lie Murari!
"Listen attentively. In My boar incarnation, when I lifted the earth, Mother Earth became impregnated by My touch. She gave birth to My son, named Naraka, who was very strong and powerful. I gave My son all religious instructions. He became a very powerful king and dutifully protected the demigods, brahmanas, spiritual master, and the devotees. However, the hand of destiny changed everything. Due to the influence and bad association of King Venu, he became a criminal and was cruel to the devotees. Any aggression or violence towards My devotees is totally intolerable to Me, so I killed My son to protect My devotees. I am revealing all these confidential matters to you because you have been serving Me for many births."
Murari Gupta was overwhelmed by the Lord's presence and narration, and he wept with joy.
All glories to Sri Gauracandra and Sri Murari Gupta! All glories to Lord Varahadeva, the protector of His devotees!
In this way Lord Caitanya went to the homes of all His devotees, and by His causeless mercy revealed His real supreme identity to them. The devotees and servants recognized their Supreme Lord, and their hearts were filled with ecstatic bliss. They now became fearless and did not care for the atheists. They went everywhere, in all public places, and chanted Krsna's name loudly. Day and night the devotees spent their time with the Lord chanting and singing Lord Krsna's holy name.
Only Lord Nityananda Prabhu was missing, and this saddened Lord Gauracandra. Lord Visvambhara was constantly thinking about Lord Nityananda. His separation became unbearable for the Lord. Lord Visvambhara knew Lord Nityananda to be the Supreme Lord, Ananta Vasudeva. I shall take this time to describe some transcendental facts about Lord Nityananda's birth, activities and so on.
The Supreme Lord Nityananda Prabhu was born in the village of Ekacakra. Lord Nityananda, who is Lord Haladhara, Balarama worshiped Lord Mooresvara, Lord Siva in the form of his linga. This temple is situated close to the Lord's birthplace. Lord Nityananda's parents were extremely pious. His father, Hrdaya Pandita, was a very learned brahmana, very compassionate and detached from material life. His Mother, Srimati Padmavati, was a very pious and chaste lady. She was a great devotee, and the Universal Mother. Lord Nityananda Raya was the eldest son of the family. Everyone was captivated by His good looks. I have already described in detail His childhood pastimes in the earlier portion of this book, so for now, I will give only indications, otherwise the book will become voluminous.
Lord Nityananda spent some years performing His childhood pastimes in the house of Hrdaya Pandita. The Lord decided to leave home, but He could not sever the bonds of affection for His mother and did not want to see her suffer. The parents could not live for a moment without seeing Lord Nityananda. Even a moment out of His sight seemed like a millennium to His mother and father. Hrdaya Pandita never went anywhere without his son. When Hrdaya Pandita went about doing his work, like going to the fields, attending to the pilgrims, or going marketing, Lord Nityananda would always accompany him. If by chance, the Lord fell behind Hrdaya Pandita, His father would frequently look frantically behind him to see whether the Lord was following him or not.
The parents often embraced and fondled Him, and the Lord's soft body, which was like butter, would melt with the bodies of His parents. Lord Nityananda became more dear to Hrdaya Pandita than his own life. The Supreme Lord is the Supersoul, therefore he knew all the desires of His father, thus He remained in the house to make His father happy.
One day, by divine arrangement, a sannyasi with a 'God-like' appearance visited Lord Nityananda's house. Hrdaya Pandita welcomed him and looked after him very nicely with great pleasure. Lord Nityananda's father spent the whole night with the sannyasi talking about Krsna and His pastimes. As he was preparing to leave early the next morning, the sannyasi asked Nityananda's father, "I have one request." Hrdaya Pandita replied, "Whatever you desire you may have." The sannyasi said, "I am on a pilgrimage tour, but I do not have a good brahmana as a companion. Give me your eldest son for a few days to be my companion. I will protect and look after him with my life, and your son will also be able to learn about the many places of pilgrimage we visit."
The sannyasi's words greatly perturbed Hrdaya Pandita who was a pure and pious brahmana. Fraught with worries, he became weak and thought, "The sannyasi has begged for my very life, and I feel that if I refuse then I will be ruined. Great personalities previously have offered even their lives to fulfill the desire of a sage or a renunciate. In the Puranas we read that Lord Ramacandra was more dear to His father, Dasaratha, than his own self. Once the sage Visvamitra begged Dasaratha to allow his son to come with him. It was very painful for Dasaratha to part with his son, Lord Ramacandra, yet he did not refuse. I feel myself to be in the same predicament. Oh Lord Krsna, please guide me and protect me in this dilemma! By divine arrangement I have to take the position of Dasaratha and my son has to take the position of Lord Ramacandra. Otherwise why is this happening to my son? And why does he have an air of detachment about him?"
Hrdaya Pandita went inside to consult his wife. The chaste Padmavati, the Universal Mother heard everything from Hrdaya Pandita and said, "Whatever you decide, my lord, is my decision too." Hrdaya Pandita returned to the sannyasi, and placed his son into his custody. He stood there crestfallen with his head hanging down, as Lord Nityananda left with the sannyasi. In this way Lord Nityananda was able to leave His home.
As soon as Lord Nityananda left, Hrdaya Pandita crumbled to the ground unconscious. He wept bitterly in separation from his beloved son and Lord. His piteous cries could even melt a heart of stone. Overwhelmed with intense love in separation from the Lord, Hrdaya Pandita appeared to be in a state of total shock. He went about like a statue. The people said, "Hrdaya Pandita has become mad." For three months Hrdaya Pandita stopped eating. But unlike ordinary human beings, he did not die or become emaciated. He remained alive only because of his attachment to the Supreme Lord.
In this context a person may question why the Lord left His house where He was so beloved. The correct answer to that question is that Lord Visnu and His devotees, the Vaisnavas possess unlimited potencies, hence their activities are inconceivable.
Lord Kapila, saturated in transcendental knowledge, left His home and widowed mother for the sake of saving the entire creation. Srila Sukadeva Gosvami walked out of his home and left his father who was none other than the great Vaisnava, Vyasadeva, never once looking back.
Even a wonderful and affectionate mother like Saci had to lose her son, who became the crest-jewel of the sannyasis, leaving her alone. Renunciation on the spiritual platform is not like ordinary renunciation. Who can understand the meaning of this? The Lord performs such pastimes for the liberation of all living entities. Such is the unparalleled mercy of the Lord. The moving story of how King Dasaratha was separated from his dearest son, Lord Ramacandra when He went to the forest would bring tears to the eyes of even a meat-eater.
After leaving His home, Lord Nityananda traveled carefree and happy to many places of pilgrimage. He visited Gaya, Kasi, Prayaga, Mathura, Dvaraka, Badarikashram, and many other holy places. He visited the birth place of Lord Buddha, and from there He went to the cave of Vyasadeva. In the South He visited the temple of Lord Ranganatha at the tip of India, where Lord Ramacandra built the bridge to cross to Sri Lanka. Then He went to the Malai Hills. He traveled through lonely forests fearlessly. He also visited Gopati, Gandhaki, Sarayun and Kaveri, Ayodhya, Dandhakaranya, Trimala, Venkathanatha, Saptho, and Gadhavari. In Karnak Nagar He visited the temple of Lord Siva. Then He visited Reva, Mahisvati, Mala Tirtha and Haridwar.
His travels finally brought Him to Mathura. He visited Gokula, the place where He had appeared in His previous incarnation as Lord Balarama. He roared with ecstatic emotion, but no one could recognize Him as the original Lord Ananta Sesa. In Vrndavana, He felt like a young boy playing with the sand of Vrndavana and rolling on the ground. This feeling was constantly with Him. He did not even feel like eating; He just wanted to play and roll in the dust of Vrndavana. No one could understand the inner mood of Lord Nityananda; He simply maintained Himself on the nectar of loving exchanges with Krsna. On some rare occasions He drank a little milk, but even then it appeared as if someone offered it to Him unsolicited.
While Lord Nityananda was living in this manner in Vrndavana, Lord Gauracandra manifested Himself in Navadvipa. Lord Caitanya was constantly engaged in the congregational chanting of the holy name in great ecstasy, but He felt sad because of Lord Nityananda Prabhu's absence. Lord Nityananda was waiting in Vrndavana for Lord Caitanya to reveal His sankirtana pastimes. As soon as He heard that Lord Caitanya had begun His sankirtana movement, He immediately came to Navadvipa and stayed in the house of Sri Nandanacarya.
Nandanacarya was a very elevated devotee, and he was happy to have Lord Nityananda Prabhu staying in his house. He saw that the Lord was very effulgent like the brilliant sun. The Lord had a large body and was dressed in the clothes of a traveling renunciate. He was always grave and equipoised. Day and night He chanted Lord Krsna's holy name. He is the Supreme unequaled Personality, nondifferent from Lord Caitanya. Absorbed within Himself, He often roared loudly like a lion, for He is the direct manifestation of Lord Balarama. His beautiful, glowing face could have easily defeated a thousand shining full moons. His captivating smile played sweetly on His exquisite lips. So white and radiant were His teeth that if a pearl were held next to them, the pearl would look like a faded and discarded piece of glass. His long languid eyes stole the pinkish tinge of the early rising sun. His arms were long and reached down to His knees, and He possessed a robust chest and broad shoulders. His lotus feet were soft, and His gait was graceful. He spoke to everyone with kind words which severed the bonds of material attachment within everyone's heart.
The coming of Lord Nityananda to Navadvipa was welcomed by all the devotees with shouts of joy. Who can describe the unlimited qualities of Lord Nityananda Prabhu, the one who had the potency to break the sannyasa staff of Lord Caitanya? Lord Nityananda is so merciful that anyone who chants His name becomes purified. Even a gross materialist, or an ignorant or fallen person can cross over this ocean of material nescience if they simply chant Lord Nityananda's name. His holy name is capable of purifying the entire material creation. Nandanacarya Prabhu was more than happy to have Lord Nityananda Prabhu stay in his house, and he looked after Him with great care.
Whoever hears Lord Nityananda's pastimes of coming to Navadvipa will be blessed with love of God. Lord Visvambhara heard of Lord Nityananda's arrival in Navadvipa, and He felt great joy within. Earlier Lord Caitanya had given indications of Lord Nityananda's arrival to the Vaisnavas, but they could not understand its import. The Lord had told them, "A great personality will come to Navadvipa within a few days."
Lord Gauracandra worshiped Lord Visnu in His temple, and then quickly went to meet all the devotees. He told them, "Last night I had a wonderful dream. A chariot came and stood in front of My door. The chariot's flag had a palm leaf drawn on it. This chariot was meant to carry one from this temporary material existence to absolute reality. The passenger of that chariot was a colossal figure. He carried a plough on His large shoulders; He was moving about as if He were restless. In His left hand He carried a renunciate's water pot which was wrapped over by cane reeds. On top He wore a blue cloth, and His lower dress was also blue. A beautiful earring pierced His left earlobe. His whole appearance and demeanor gave me the impression that He was Lord Balarama. Then speaking in (Hindi??), He repeated a question at least ten or twenty times saying, 'Does this house not belong to Nimai Pandita?'
"Never before had I seen such a formidable-looking mendicant. I felt great respect for this person and I asked, 'I see that You are a great personality. Who are You?' Smiling, He replied, 'I am Your brother. Tomorrow we shall get to know each other.' His words increased My delight, and I began to feel that He and I were the same person."
In the middle of the narration, the Lord went into an ecstatic trance, and entering into the mood of Lord Balarama, He began to roar and shout loudly, "Bring Me wine, bring Me wine." His thundering voice seemed to burst the eardrums. Srivasa Pandita said, "Listen to me my dear Lord, the wine that You want is not to be found anywhere, but You and others will have it only if You distribute it!"
The devotees, a little afraid and trembling, stayed at a distance from the Lord. The Vaisnavas thought to themselves, "There must be a reason for all this."
With reddened eyes the Lord recited small lyrical poems and ballads. Smiling, He softly and rhythmically swayed His body like Lord Sankarsana, Balarama. After a while the Lord returned back to His normal self.
Then Murari Gupta, the beloved devotee and friend of Lord Ramacandra, began to explain the inner meaning of the Lord's dream: "My feeling is that a great personality has come to Navadvipa. You had mentioned earlier that we would soon meet a great personality." The Lord then said to Srila Haridasa Thakura and to Srivasa Pandita, "Go and find out where this great personality is."
The two great spiritual stalwarts left on the order of Lord Caitanya and roamed about Navadvipa, searching. On the way they discussed, "Maybe Lord Sankarsana, Lord Balarama, has come Himself." They went about looking everywhere with great happiness, but could not find a single trace of the person they were looking for. After three hours of intensive searching, they returned. They humbly submitted their report to the Lord, "We could not find Him anywhere. We looked everywhere. We went to Vaisnavas' houses, spoke to sannyasis, went to the householders, even to the houses of the atheists and Mayavadis. But we were unsuccessful. We looked in every house in Navadvipa. The only houses we did not see were the ones on the outskirts of Navadvipa." Lord Gauracandra smiled, indicating that Lord Nityananda was a very mysterious personality.
In the Lord's present incarnation as Sri Krsna Caitanya some people want to glorify Lord Caitanya, but refuse to glorify Lord Nityananda Prabhu. Such a grievous sin is similar to worshiping Lord Krsna, Govinda, but not respecting Lord Siva or Shankara. Such an abominable person will surely be condemned to eternal hellish sufferings. Lord Nityananda's incarnation is very mysterious and confidential. It is impossible for anyone to see Him, unless and until Lord Caitanya Himself reveals this secret. Although the living entity is a part and parcel of Krsna and it is their constitutional position to be an eternal servant of Krsna, they have eternally forfeited this opportunity to engage in Lord Krsna's and Lord Caitanya's devotional service.
Unalloyed devotees such as Srivasa Pandita and Haridasa Thakura are fully realized in such esoteric understandings, yet for some mysterious reason, they could not find Nityananda Prabhu. Then Lord Caitanya, laughing mildly said, "Come with Me. Let us go find Him."
All the devotees became very jubilant and chanted, "All glories to Krsna!", and they accompanied the Lord. The Lord took all the Vaisnava devotees, and went directly to the house of Nandanacarya. Everything was already known to the omniscient Supreme Lord, Sri Gauracandra. Inside the house they saw a great personality - effulgent like a million suns. Without proper spiritual vision one cannot see Lord Nityananda. A sweet smile played on His lips and He was totally absorbed in meditation on Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.
The Lord saw before Him a towering spiritual stalwart, and Lord Visvambhara along with all the devotees offered their obeisances to Lord Nityananda Prabhu. They stood up respectfully and kept standing without speaking a word. Lord Visvambhara stood at the head of all the Vaisnavas. Lord Nityananda saw Lord Visvambhara and recognized Him as the beloved Lord of His heart.
Lord Visvambhara was looking so beautiful, even more beautiful than Cupid himself. A fragrant flower garland hung around His neck. His face was decorated with sandalwood paste, and He wore nice fine clothes.
What is glittering gold next to the Lord's aura? The full moon has lost interest in her own beauty, and she yearns to see the glowing face of the Lord.
How enchanting they look, Nityananda and Lord Gauranga, as They roam about Navadvipa with the devotees chanting the holy name of God! What is the luster and value of pearls next to the Lord's teeth? One is sure to lose his mind at the sight of the Lord's beautiful cascading black hair. All other lotuses look faded and artificial next to the pinkish, graceful lotus-eyes of the Lord.
His long hands extend down to His knees, and the thin line of His brahmana thread hangs loosely across His broad and expansive chest. A thin and perfect tilaka decorates His broad forehead. Without any jewelry or ornaments, every limb of His beautiful body looks exquisite and captivating. Whence goes the brilliance of millions of precious gems compared to His dazzling nails?
What use do I have for ambrosia when I see the sweet smile playing on my Lord's lips?
Lord Sri Krsna Caitanya and Lord Nityananda Prabhu are my life and soul.
I, Vrndavana dasa, humbly offer this song at Their lotus feet.