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(Marhati Raga – Disha)
Hari Rama Rama Gaurachand aare Prana mora haya
Prathame kahiba katha apurva kathan
Acharya Gosai kaila garvera vandana
Prithivite janama laila trijagata natha
Sangopango yata yata parishada satha
Gauranchand (Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu) ,who is non different to Lord Hari and Lord Ramachandra, is my very life.
First of all I would recite the wonderful pastimes of how Sri Advaita Acharya worshipped Saci Mata’s womb. Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, the Lord of the three worlds, appeared on this earth along with His eternal associates.
Srimad Bhagavatam states –
krishna-varnam tvishakrishnam sangopangastra-parshadam,yajnaih sankirtana-prayair yajanti hi sumedhasah (11.5.32)
In the age of Kali, intelligent persons perform congregational chanting to worship the incarnation of Godhead (Gauranga) who constantly sings the holy name of Krishna. Although His complexion is not blackish, He is Krishna Himself. He is accompanied by His associates, weapons , servants, and confidential companions.
When the Supreme Lord descends to this world, He descends along with all of His weapons, associates, servants and all of His incarnations as well.
Mata pita balaka lalena yenamate
Annaprashana naame thuila harashite
Balya-charita katha kahiba bidhana
Shunya charane shuni nupura nishana
Bringing the Lord up with utmost care, His mother (Sacidevi) and father (Jagannatha Mishra) subsequently performed Nimai’s grain eating and the name giving ceremony with great joy. I would recite the childhood pastimes of the Lord and how the people could hear the sounds of ankle bells from His feet, even when He wore none.
Parashi asuchi deshe chale achambite
Apana maa-era jnana kahila yemate
Puranarigana kahe bujhite charita
Taar bole narikela anila tvarite
Sometimes Nimai would touch unclean things and when His mother would try to stop Him, Nimai would speak bewildering words of philosophy.To test Him, the old village ladies would sometimes ask Him to fetch a coconut. Surprisingly, He would manifest one almost instantly.
Nimai began exhibiting His blissful enchanting pastimes since He was a little boy. One day, Jagannath Mishra went far for some work and Nimai climbed upon some used clay pots that were utilised for cooking. When Nimai, with His golden complexion climbed upon these black pots, He seemed just like a golden champaka flower with these pots seeming like black bees hovering around Him. When Saci mata asked Him to get down from the place citing that it was unclean, little Nimai surprised everyone by speaking some deep philosophical subjects. Suddenly Nimai began saying that whichever place He sits upon becomes purified by His presence. Wherever He stays, the place becomes automatically sanctified. Ganges and all other places of pilgrimage naturally reside there. The conception of clean and unclean are a conditioned way of thinking. He added that as those pots were used to cook bhoga for Lord Vishnu, they could never become contaminated. On the contrary these pots were the most sanctified and they could purify everything simply by their touch. The people who had gathered over there to hear the ongoing discussion were astounded hearing little Nimai’s reply.By the influence of His illusory potency, no one could fathom the depth of his words though.
During this pastime,Nimai also expressed His keen desire to continue with His studies, which had by then been halted by Jagannatha Misra. Nimai said that how would He come to differentiate between clean and unclean things if He was not allowed to continue with His studies.It was after this pastime that little Nimai was allowed to resume His studies.
Kukkura-shabaka laiya khelana thakura
Dekhiya shakala loka ananda prachura
Balakera shonge khela khele rajapathe
Gupta-bejha parakash dekhila yemate
Seeing the Lord playing with a puppy, everyone was very much pleased.Murari Gupta watched the Lord play with His friends in the streets.
Basakasahite hari-sankirtana-e nritya
Dekhiya shakala loka anandita chitto
Yena mate haate khari dile tara baap
Ya shunile duur hoi amangala taap
All the people (of Nadia) greatly relished the Lord’s sankirtana pastimes with His friends. His father (Jagannatha Mishra) thereafter gave Nimai a chalk and taught Him how to write. Anyone who hears of this pastime, is relieved of all sufferings and inauspiciousness.
Nimai’s childhood pastimes have been described in a greater detail in Adi Lila of Sri Chaitanya Mangala. The childhood pastimes of Nimai are especially sweet and heart melting. As Locana das Thakura confirms in this verse, contemplation and meditation upon these pastimes removes all inauspiciousness and fills one’s heart with love and ecstasy.
dhanye kalau sampravishte, Gaura leela manorama;
prakata bhavita hy etat, vyaktam tada bhavishyati
The advent of the age of Kali is most auspicious because in the near future the most wonderful and enchanting holy Pastimes of Lord Gauranga will be most openly and widely established and broadcasted.
Tabeta kahiba katha shuno sabdhane
Khele Viswambhara-Viswarupa jyestha san-e
Indra-upendra yena dui sahadara
Kahiba tahara katha sunibe uttara
Please listen carefully as i describe the wonderful childhood pastimes of how Viswambhara played with His elder brother Viswarupa. The two brothers resembled just like Indra and Upendra (Indra’s brother).I shall recite these pastimes and you shall relish them.
Viswarupa was the elder brother of Lord Chaitanya.He accepted sannyasa at a very early age and left his home, when Nimai was a little child. Viswarupa’s sannyasa name was Sankararanya. He subsequently passed away at a place of pilgrimage known as Pandharpur, situated in western India.
Viswarupa sannyasa karila yenamate
Viswambhara mata pita prabodhe kathate
Tabe to kahiba Viswambharera charita
Balakasahite khela khele viparita
When Viswarupa accepted His sannyasa,Viswambhara consoled His father and mother. I shall narrate how Viswambhara performed His mischievous playful pastimes along with the other boys.
Shakala balaka mili Jahnavira kule
Balukaya pakshapadachihna dekhi bule
Dekhiya tahara pita dukhi haila mana
Gharere aniya kaila tarjana garjana
The Lord would play upon the bank of the Ganges along with the other boys. The Lord’s father (Jagannatha Misra) followed the footprints on the sand one day and found his son playing over there. He became very sad. Bringing Nimai back home, he rebuked him in a loud voice.
Swapane tanhare kripa kaila yenamate
Kahiba shakala katha shuno ekchite
Karnabedha churakarana ara upabita
Kahiba shakala katha ananditachita
Please listen attentively as i describe how Nimai bestowed His mercy (upon His father) in a dream. With a jubilant heart i shall narrate the Lord’s ear-piercing, hair-cutting, sacred thread and other ceremonies.
Balya samadhana haile yauvana pravesha
Dine dine kare prema prakash aseshe
Guru sthane parilena satirthera sane
Bangajera kathaya parihasaye yemone
Once His childhood was over, the Lord entered His youth. Day by day He began manifesting His intense love for God. He began studying at His teacher’s house along with His friends. The Lord used to make fun of the bengali dialect spoken by the students having their roots in East Bengal.
There is a little difference in the bengali accents spoken by the people of East bengal (now Bangladesh) and the people of west Bengal. This difference gets more profound as one travels further east or further west. For example a bengali from Kolkata may find it really difficult to decipher the bengali spoken by a person originating from sylhet or chittagong. It is worthwhile mentioning at this point that though Mahaprabhu made fun of the bengali accents of the students from East bengal, yet His parents were originally from Sylhet, situated in East Bengal. Mahaprabhu was an expert in teasing others.
Maa-e ajna dila ekadashi karibare
Anek prakash katha kahiba se-kaale
Henoyi samay Jagannatha paralaka
Kandoye yemate prabhu paiya pitrishoka
He instructed His mother (Saci devi) to observe ekadashi vows. I shall narrate several important things when i discuss this pastime.During this time, Jagannatha Mishra passed away from this world and Nimai cried piteously at the loss of His father.
There is a beautiful pastime in which Nimai begged His mother, to grant Him something in charity. When Srimati Saci devi agreed to grant Nimai a boon, Lord Viswambhara begged her to fast from grains on ekadashi. From that day onwards Saci devi happily gave up eating grains on an ekadashi day. In this way Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu introduced the system of observing a fast on the ekadashi day, since His very childhood.
Tabeto kahiba katha aparupa ara
Vivaha karila prabhu ananda apara
Ganga darsane ara ye haila rahasya
Savdhabe shuno iha kahiba abashya
I shall narrate to you the beautiful pastimes of the Lord’s marriage, which had bestowed unlimited bliss upon everyone. I shall reveal to you the confidential incident that had occured while the Lord was on His way to the Ganges. Please listen to it carefully, as i shall definitely tell you this story.
Purva-desh gamana kahiba bhalomate
Lakshmi-swarga-arohana haila yenamate
deshere ashiya punah vivaha karila
Sishye vidyadan diya gaya-re chalila
I shall nicely explain the Lord’s journey to His ancestral home (in Bangladesh). It was at this time that Lakshmipriya devi passed away from this world. On returning, Mahaprabhu married once again. After imparting education unto His students, He left for Gaya.
After Lakshmipriya devi (Nimai Pandita’s first wife) had passed away, suffering an intense separation from her husband, Saci mata endeavored to get Nimai married for the second time.Sri Sanatana Mishra was a pious and charitable brahmana of Navadvipa.He was exceedingly educated and being a great scholar ,had received the title of ‘Raja Pandita’.The Gaura gannoddesha Deepika reveals that Sanatana Misra was the incarnation of King Satrajit. His daughter ,Srimati Vishnupriya devi was a chaste ,beautiful woman of noble character. She embodied all the divine qualities of Lakshmi devi.
Tanra kanya aachen parama Sucharita
Murtimati Lakshmi-praya sei jaganmata
(Sri Chaitanya Bhagavata)
Saci devi used to meet Vishnupriya at the bathing Ghat of the ganges everyday.She noted the exalted qualities of the girl, and decided that Vishnupriya was the perfect match for her son Nimai.Deciding thus, Saci Mata approached Sri Kashinath Pandita, who mediated between the two families and the marriage was soon fixed.
Sri Buddhimanta Khan, an eternal associate of Mahaprabhu, was a wealthy gentleman of Navadvipa. He was the incarnation of King Suvarna Sena, who in the previous yugas, had ruled over these lands.Suvarna Vihara, the place where Suvarna Sen’s palace once stood, can be taken darsana of at Godrumadvipa till this day. Ancient relics of prehistoric architecture have been excavated from this place that tell a tale of an opulent past.Sri Buddhimanta Khan, subsequently bore the entire expense of Mahaprabhu and Vishnupriya devi’s marriage.
Pratyeke kahiba iha shuno sarvajana
Anek ananda pabe, na chharo jatana
Desh agaman katha kahiba vishesh
Prema prakashaye-nirantara rashabesh
I shall narrate these pastimes to everyone ; so please listen to them attentively. One shall obtain a lot of transcendental bliss upon hearing them carefully.I shall recite how the Lord returned to West bengal and manifested symptoms of ecstatic spiritual love, and how He always remained plunged in a nectar of transcendental mellows.
Madhyakhanda-katha bhai anek ananda
Shunite pulaka bandhe amiyara khanda
Bhakta sandarshana katha premar prakash
Kahibar aage uthe hridoye ullash
The pastimes described in Madhya Khanda (of this book) are full of transcendental bliss. One who hears of them has the hairs of his body standing on its end. The section is filled with sweet nectar. By discussing these pastimes in the association of devotees, one develops transcendental love of God.Hence, even before i attempt to recite them i feel great ecstasy arising within my heart.
Sri Locana das Thakura has divided Chaitanya Mangala into the following parts – Sutra Khanda, Adi Khanda, Madhya Khanda and Sesh Khanda. Sutra Khanda primarily deals with the celestial pastimes preceding the advent of Lord Gauranga.Adi Khanda deals with the Lord’s childhood pastimes and pastimes in His youth. Madhya Khanda recites the pastimes of Mahaprabhu till His journey to South India.The later pastimes of Mahaprabhu have been recited in Sesh Khanda.
Madhya-khanda katha bhai nadiya-vihar
Amiyar dhara yena premar prachara
Ati aparupa leela prakashila prabhu
Chari yuge adbhut katha nahi shune kabhu
O Brother! The pastimes described in Madhya Khanda (of Chaitanya Mangala) talks about the Lord’s activities in Nadiya. These pastimes wherein the Lord preached love of God ,are just like incessant streams of nectar. Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu manifested the most wonderful incomparable pastimes, never heard before in any of the four yugas.
‘Avatara sar Gaura avatara’. Lord Chaitanya is the essence of all the incarnations of the Supreme. His blissful transcendental body is saturated with ecstatic love of God, merely by seeing which, one receives the pure love of God.
The Navadvipa dham mahatmya states –
‘ara eka gudha katha suna sarva jana, kali jive yogya vastu Gaura leela dhana’