(Dhanashi Raga – Madhya chhanda)
Oki aare oki aare haya (refrain)
Heno adbhuta katha , sravana mangala nama
Ara shuno gauraguna gatha
O! O! O! O! Such wonderful amazing pastimes. Please hear the auspicious holy names of the Lord, please listen more of Lord Gauranga’s glories.
Shuniya Rukmini vani antara ullashe
Aruna kamala – ankhi karuna – jole bhase
Anga helaiya pahun lahu lahu bole
Simhasane basiya Rukmini kari kole
(Murari Gupta continued narrating the pastimes to Sri Svarupa Damodara)
Hearing the words of Rukmini devi, Sri Krishna became elated within His heart. His lotus like eyes that emitted the hue of sunset, was filled with tears of compassion. Sitting upon His throne and bringing His body close to Rukmini devi, He placed Rukmini devi upon His lap.
Chibuke dakshina kara bayana nehale
Uthholi prema sindhu amiya hillole
Heno adbhuta katha kabhu nahi shuni
Bhunjiba premar sukh kahila apani
Holding Her (Rukmini’s) chin with His right hand, the Lord gazed lovingly at Her. Great nectarian waves arose from the ocean of ecstatic love (within their hearts).
(Lord Krishna then said) ‘Never have i heard before such wonderful words. No one has suggested Me before to taste the ecstatic bliss of My own love’.
Heno kale Narada aila achambita
Bayana birasha munir antara chintita
Uthiya sambhrame devi padya arghya diya
Basaila divya-asane kushala puchhiya
Just then, all of a sudden, Narada Muni arrived there at Dwarka. His face appeared pale and he looked worried. Rukmini devi atonce got up and respectfully welcomed Narada muni with water to wash his feet and the paraphernalia to worship him. She enquired about his welfare and offered him a seat.
Thakura uthiya kaila nibira aasleshe
Sarasa kathaye Krishna Narada sambhase
Anurage ranga dui ankhi chhala chhala
Gadagada bhas muji kare talamala
Lord Krishna also arose and tightly embraced Narada muni. He welcomed him with sweet words. Narada’s eyes, which were tainted with divine love, were filled with tears.His voice was choked up and his body trembled.
Anga nirakhite ankhi bhase premanire
Kahibare chahe kichu kahite na paare
Prabhu sudhaila muni kaha sunischita
Eheno durbala kene antara chintito
The tears of ecstasy that streamed from Narada’s eyes flooded all over his body. Though Narada wanted to speak, yet he could not (as he was overwhelmed with love). Lord Krishna asked the sage ,’Please tell me what exactly troubles you and makes you so worried. What has made you so frail?’
The eight manifestations of transcendental ecstasy that a spiritual practitioner experiences at times are : 1. being stopped as though dumb; 2. perspiration 3. standing up of hairs on the body 4. dislocation of voice 5. trembling 6. fading of the body 7. crying in ecstasy and 8. trance
Tumi mor pranadhika, muin tora prana
Tomare dukhita dekhi harila geyan
Narada kahoye prabhu ki kahiba ami
Tumi sarveshwareshwar sarva antaryami
(Lord Krishna continued) ‘You are dearer to Me than even My own life. And I am dearer to you than Your life. Seeing you sorrowful, I almost lose my consciousness’.
Narada muni replied,’ O Lord ! what shall I say ? You are the master of all masters, and knower of all hearts’.
Tora gunagaane mor amiya aahar
Tor guna-lobhe bulon shakala samsara
Krishna-nama na shunilo samsara bhramiya
Nija mod-e matta lok toma pashariya
(Narada continued) ‘The songs celebrating Your exalted qualities are my nectarian foodstuffs. Hankering to preach Your glories, I traversed the world of birth and death. But I could not hear the chants of Krishna’s holy name travelling through the entire material world. Being absorbed in material activities, the people have forgotten You’.
This is the only business of a pure devotee – to chant and sing the glories of the Supreme Lord.
Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu had predicted :
‘prithivite ache yata nagaradi-grama, sarvatra pracara haibe mora nama.
My Name will be broadcasted and glorified in various towns, villages, cities of the world.
So let us try to act as an instrument of Mahaprabhu’s divine will and propagate His name and pastimes all over the world.
‘Gaurangera madhura leela, yar karne praveshila, hridoya nirmala velo taar’ –
Anyone who as much as hears of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s nectarian pastimes, is immediately cleansed of all impurities in his heart.
So let us relish this priceless treasure of love and distribute it to everyone else.
Ahankar-e mugadha murchhita sarvalok
Krishnaheen lok dekhi – ei mor shok
Lokera nistar hetu na dekhi upaya
Ei monoh-katha mon sadai dheyay
(Narada continued) ‘Being intoxicated and enchanted with pride, the entire world has become devoid of Krishna. This is the cause of my sorrow.I see no means of delivering these (conditioned) people. This is the thought that keeps disturbing my mind’.
A vaishnava is ‘parah dukhe dukhi’ and ‘parah sukhe sukhi’. In other words he feels sad seeing others suffering and feels happy seeing others happy and blissful. Here Narada muni feels sad and compassionate seeing the suffering souls of this world. The root cause of all suffering is forgetfulness of the Supreme Lord.
Nibedila antarer yata chhilo dukkha
Tor pada parashade ara sab shukha
Hasiya kahen prabhu shuna mahamuni
Puravera yata katha pasharile tumi
(Narada continued) ‘Now I have revealed to You, all that ,which pained my heart. By the mercy of Your lotus feet, all else is blissful’.
Smiling Lord krishna then said, ‘ Please listen O great sage. You have forgotten all the events of the past’.
Katyayani pratigya karila yenamate
Mahesh samvad Mahaprasada nimitte
Ara aparupa katha Rukmini kahila
Shuniya bihavala ami pratigya karila
(Lord Krishna continued) ‘Goddess Katyayani (Durga) had previously made a promise to Lord Shiva regarding My Mahaprasada. And Rukmini just spoke some wonderful words, hearing which I have become overwhelmed. Thus I made a vow’.
Bhunjibo Premar shukh, bhunjaibo loke
Deena bhab prakash kariba kaliyuge
Bhakata yanera sange bhakati kariya
Nija prema bilaiba isvara haiya
(Sri Krishna continued) ‘I shall relish the bliss of My own ecstatic love, and I shall make the others taste this ecstasy as well. I shall manifest a form filled with humility in this kaliyuga. Along with the other devotees , I shall engage in devotional service and in the process ,I, the Supreme personality of Godhead, shall freely distribute the ecstatic love for Me to one and all’.
Krishna-varnam tvishakrishnam sangopangastra-parshadam,yajnaih sankirtana-prayair yajanti hi sumedhasah
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.
(Srimad Bhagavatam 11.5.32)
The land of Navadvipa, the place where Sri Chaitanya mahaprabhu eternally enjoys His magnanimous pastimes, is saturated with audarya (magnanimity). He is the saviour of the fallen souls; that is why He is also known as patita pavana.
Along with His associates, Sri Chaitanya had manifested the most blissful , heart rending pastimes that have been ever witnessed in human history. In fact, some of the eternal associates of the Lord have experienced a greater degree of transcendental ecstasy being part of the pastimes of Lord Chaitanya, as compared to being part of Sri Krishna’s vrindavana pastimes. Lord Gaurahari freely gives what no other incarnation of the Supreme Lord has ever given before – the ecstatic pure love of God. He does not consider one’s qualifications or background or pedigree before bestowing this supreme gift upon them, receiving which one achieves the ultimate perfection of his human life .He is the essence of all the other incarnations of the Supreme – ‘Avatara sar Gaura avatara’.
Ati aparupa leela prakashila prabhu
Chari yuge adbhut katha nahi shune kabhu
(Chaitanya Mangala , 1.94)
– Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu had manifested the most wonderful incomparable pastimes, never heard before in any of the four yugas.
This ecstatic love of God eludes the great demigods like Brahma, Shiva and Indra. Even Lakshmi devi, the wife of Lord Narayana, hankers to receive it. A yogi cannot achieve it , even after performing severe austerities for a thousand of years. A Jnani cannot smell it even after analysing the whole of the vedic scriptures. This ecstatic love of God is extremely rare but it can be easily achieved by the causeless mercy of Lord Gaurasundara. That is why even drunkards and sinful murderers like Jagai and Madhai had obtained it 500 years ago. By mercy of Lord Gauranga, they gave up their sinful lives and spent rest of their days serving vaishnavas and engaging themselves in ecstatic Gauranga bhajana.
Sri Chaitanya Chandramrita explains why Lord Gauranga is the essence of all incarnations :
Rakso-daitya-kulam hatam kiyad idam yogadi-vartma-kriya-
Margo va prakati-kritah kiyad idam sristy adhikam va kiyat
Mediny-uddharanadikam kiyad idam premojjvalaya maha-
Bhakter vartma-karim param bhagavatas Chaitanya-murtim stumah
(Chaitanya Chandramrita, Text 7)
What benefit did the world derive when the incarnations of the supreme Lord like Ramachandra, Nrsimha, and many others killed so many raksasa and Daityas ? What was the benefit derived when Lord kapila and other incarnations reveal the paths of sankhya and yoga ? Is it of great glory that Lord Brahma and other guna-avataras create, maintain and destroy the material universes ? How auspicious is it that Lord Varahadeva lifted and rescued the earth from the garbhodaka ocean ? We do not consider these pastimes to be so important. The most important of all things is that Lord Chaitanya has revealed the great splendour of pure ecstatic love for Himself. Let us glorify that Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.
And what happens to those who have received the causeless mercy of Lord Gauranga :
Kaivalyam narakayate tri dasa pur akasha puspayate
Durdantendriya kala sarpa patali protkhata damstrayate
Visvam purna sukhayate vidhi mahendradis ca kitayate
Yat karunya kataksa vaibhav-avatam tam Gauram eva stumah
(Chaitanya Chandramrita, text 5)
For those who have attained the merciful sidelong glance of Lord Gauranga, impersonal liberation (merging into the brahmajyoti) becomes as painful as going to hell, the heavenly cities of the demigods seem to be as trivial as mere flowers floating in the sky, the venomous and poisonous fangs of the untamable black snakes of the senses become extracted and uprooted,the whole world which is otherwise full of misery becomes full of supreme joy and the exalted positions of Brahma, Indra and all the demigods become as insignificant as those of tiny insects. Let us glorify that supremely merciful Lord Gauranga.
Nija guna sankirtana prakash kariba
Navadvipe Saci-grihe janama lobhibo
Gaura dirgha kalebara, bahu janu-sama
Sumeru sundara tanu ati anupama
‘I shall manifest the congregational chanting of my glories. I shall take My birth at the house of Saci devi in Navadvipa. My body shall be fair and long ,with my arms reaching up to my knees. The matchless form of mine shall be as beautiful as Mount Sumeru’.
Kahite kahite Prabhu Gaura-tanu haila
Dekhiya Narada ati arati barila
Sumeru sundara tanu, premar abeshe
Kohoye Locana Gaura prathama prakashe
Speaking thus, Lord Krishna manifested His form as Lord Gauranga beholding which Narada muni became overwhelmed with divine rapture. The form of the Lord was as glorious as Mount Sumeru and saturated with pure ecstatic love. Locana das says that this is the first time that the form of Lord Gauranga has been manifest.
Srila Vrindavana das Thakura glorifies the wonderful blissful form of Lord Gaurahari in one of his bhajans :
Madanamohana tanu Gauranga Sundara
Lalate Tilakashova urdhhe mahohara
Trikachha vasana shobhe kutila kuntala
Ayata nayana dui parama chanchala
Shukla-yajna-suta shobhe beriya sarire
Suksha-rupe ananta ye heno kalebare
Adhare tambula hashe adhara chapiya
Jaun Vrindavana Dasa se rupa nichiha
The exquisitely beautiful body of Lord Gauranga is more enchanting than that of a cupid. His forehead is adorned with a glistening Vaishnava tilaka.
He wears wonderful clothes which are tucked at three places (example- dhoti) with His hairs curled all over His head. His large eyes are very restless.
Manifesting a very slender subtle form Lord Ananta has become a white sacred thread that adorns Gauranga’s beautiful body.
Upon His lips rest a tambula and a gentle half smile.
Seeing this wonderful form, Vrindavana das worships Him.
(Sri Raga- Disha)
Aki Gauranga Jaya Jaya !!! (refrain)
Aki na mor Gauranga prema amiya
Ki na mor Gauranga are jaya jaya
All Glories , all glories to Lord Gauranga !!!
Alas ! why am i not able to taste the nectarian ecstatic love for my Lord Gauranga !
All glories , all glories unto Lord Gauranga !!!
Dekhiya Narada muni harish hiyay
Barishaye ankhi-nir sahasra dharay
Koti indujini jyoti ,koti robi tyeje
Koti kaam jini rupa ,gorabor raje
(Sri Murari Gupta continued with his story)
Beholding the wonderful form of Lord Gauranga, Narada muni felt ecstatic in his heart. A thousand streams of tears gushed from his eyes. The beauty of the Lord resembled the radiance of millions of moons and He shone like a million of effulgent suns. His majestic form was as beautiful as millions of cupids combined together.
Jhalamala anga tyejah – chahite na pari
Ankhi mude rahe muni kanpe tharahari
Tyejah sambariya prabhu narade nehare
Abasha narada dekhi dake ucchasware
Blinded by the shining effulgence of the Lord’s transcendental body, Narada muni closed his eyes and trembled. Withdrawing His effulgence, the Lord glanced at Narada and called him out loudly.
Lord Gauranga is the essence of all the incarnations of the Supreme (avatara sar Gaura avatara).His enchanting blissful form is saturated with ecstatic love. Just by catching a mere glimpse of Him, one can obtain the greatest treasure of ecstatic love of God, which is rare for even the greatest of demigods. Just like Gangadhar bhattacharya who was one of those who had the rare opportunity to witness Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s sannyasa initiation at Gauranga bari , in Katwa.Such was the effect of Lord’s darsana on Gangadhara ,that he began chanting Sri Chaitanya’s names day and night. He constantly cried “Ha Chaitanya! Ha Chaitanya! Krishna Chaitanya!” . Such was his intoxication in divine love for Mahaprabhu, that people nicknamed him as Chaitanya Das. This is how ,being a recipient of Lord Gauranga’s mercy, Sri Gangadhar Bhattacharya came to be subsequently known as Chaitanya Das.He and his wife lakshmipriya devi were blessed by Lord Chaitanya, and as a result these fortunate souls could subsequently become the proud parents of Sri Srinivasa Acharya, the manifestation of Mahaprabhu’s ecstasy.
Mahaprabhu’s form, His qualities and His pastimes are so attractive and so magnanimous, that thousands of people in south India, villages after villages were delivered, receiving the love of God ,simply by coming in contact with Him.
When Lord Gauranga danced ,He soared to newer and newer heights of ecstasy.The beauty of the Lord defeated that of millions of cupids.None in the world could dance as beautifully and as gracefully as Sri Gauranga. As soon as the Kirtana began, the Lord became absorbed in trance ,and would sometimes fall down upon the ground with such force, that the earth would seem to shake.Sometimes He would become so heavy that no one could restrain Him, while at other times, he would become as light as a cotton.Sometimes He would weep for hours altogether, trembling and rolling on the floor, while the devotees would secretly take the dust from His lotus feet. The soul stirring kirtana of His associates ,mixed with the melodious voices of Kartala,mridanga and conch shells, coupled with the Lord’s ecstatic dancing created a musical uproar that cannot be compared to anything of this material world. The Lord would display ecstatic symptoms which are not revealed in the scriptures – Sometimes His body became stiff like a statue, while at other times it became as soft as a cream,Sometime His body became elongated to such an extent that He appeared twice His normal size, while at other times, He looked thinner and smaller than usual.
When Mahaprabhu organized the mass sankirtana procession of devotees who marched towards Chand Kazi’s house in Simulia, people of navadvipa spontaneously left their homes and participated in Lord Chaitanya’s sankirtana. Dancing and singing they assisted the Lord in His mission.
Even when the Lord was travelling to vrindavana from ramkeli, people abandoned their houses and like waves of a sea, accompanied Him wherever He went. These people sacrificed all their opulences, obligations, etc and did not think twice about participating in Lord Chaitanya’s sankirtana.
We should understand that all living entities, already possess a very deep and strong attraction towards Lord Gaurahari. Hearing and contemplating upon His pastimes shall help us revive our lost relationship with Him (Sravanadi-suddha-chitte karaye udaya). When Mahaprabhu was travelling to Vrindavana through the forest of Jharkhand, even the animals of the jungle, recognised their eternal Lord and danced in ecstasy, thereby participating in His Harinama sankirtana movement.
Lord Gauranga’s name and His pastimes are non different from Him. So when we meditate upon Him, His name or His pastimes, we are in fact directly associating with Him, the most merciful incarnation of the Supreme. The more we do this regularly, the more we cleanse our consciousness which further helps in reviving our spontaneous faith and devotion unto Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.One who meditates and contemplates upon Mahaprabhu’s ecstatic form and His enchanting blissful pastimes ,is very quickly cleansed of all contaminations.So we should ‘Read, Contemplate and Preach’ atleast one of Lord Gauranga’s pastimes daily. We should read atleast one of Lord Gaurahari’s pastimes in a day, contemplate upon it and preach it to any person we desire. The next day we can Read,contemplate and preach a different pastime of Lord Gaurasundara.In this way we would purify our consciousness and progress very quickly in devotion.
The Navadvipa dham mahatmya states –
‘ara eka gudha katha suna sarva jana, kali jive yogya vastu Gaura leela dhana’
Please hear the most confidential secret. The most suitable thing for the conditioned souls in this age of Kali, is the supreme treasure of Lord Gauranga’s pastimes.
Sambita paila muni se rupa dheyane
Punah darsana lagi piyash nayane
Thakura kahahe muni shuno mahabhag
Abyahata gati tor sarvatra sohaag
Regaining his consciousness, Narada became absorbed meditating upon Lord Gauranga’s form.However, he yearned to behold the form of Lord Gauranga with his thirsty eyes once more. Lord Krishna then told Narada ,’ Listen O most fortunate sage, you can travel wherever you like and you shall be loved wherever you go’.
Those who have realized that Gauranga prema is the essence of all vedic scriptures and the highest form of spiritual practice, pray as below :
kandarpad api sundarah surasarit purad aho pavanah
sitamsor api shitalah sumadhuroh madhvika sarad api
data kalpa mahiruhad api maha snigdho jananya api
premna Gaura harih kada nu hrdi me dhyatuh padah dhasyati
(Chaitanya Chandramrita, Text 72)
When will Lord Gaurahari, who is unlimitedly more beautiful than Cupid, infinitely more purifying than the celestial Ganges, more soothing than millions of moons, sweeter than madhavika nectar, more charitable and generous than the celestial desire creepers, and more affectionate than millions of mothers , appear in my meditation and lovingly place His lotus feet upon my heart ?
Ghosona karoho shiva brahma adi loke
Gaura avatara muin haba Kaliyuge
Guna sankirtana nama prakash kariba
Nija bhakti prema-rasa sukh prachariba
(Lord krishna continued) ‘Announce at the residences of Shiva, Brahma and all the other celestial planets, that I would advent as Lord Gauranga in the age of kali. I shall propagate the congregational chanting of My name and qualities. I shall preach the bliss of tasting the ecstatic love obtained by rendering devotional service unto Me’.
Mahaprabhu reveals His reasons for adventing upon this world in the below verse :
Nija preme bhasaiba e brahmanda sob
Kabhu na rakhibo dukhha, shoka ek lob
Bhasaiba sthabara , jangama devagane
Shuni anandita kahe e das Locana-e
(Chaitanya Mangala, 568-569)
(Lord Gauranga said) ‘I shall flood the universe with the nectar of ecstatic devotional service unto Myself. Not the slightest tinge of suffering shall remain. I shall flood the moving, the unmoving, the demigods in that ecstatic nectar’. Locana das narrates this pastime, being filled with bliss.
In this verse Lord Chaitanya has predicted how the whole universe (not just the earth) shall be intoxicated with His divine love and be flooded in devotional ecstasy. He has predicted how being madly engrossed in His ecstatic love, the world shall be completely delivered from their miserable suffering condition. A person who receives Mahaprabhu’s causeless mercy cares for nothing else in this material world and achieves the highest perfection of life. The words ‘Nija preme’ is very significant, as Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu has specifically mentioned over here ,about the transcendental love that others shall possess for Him and His own form (and not for any other manifestations of the supreme). Though all forms and manifestations of the Supreme belong to one and the same Supreme person, yet there are differences when it comes to each of their mood, nature, characteristics, qualities, magnanimity and purpose.
So worship of Lord Gauranga, the golden avatara, is very essence of devotional science, which shall soon be revealed in this fortunate age of kali.
Shata shata shakha, bhaktipathe nahi shima
Ekmukh hauk lok, prachariba prema
Nija nija bhakta-jana ara parishad
Prithivi janam giya premabhakti swadh
(Lord krishna continued) ‘There are presently hundreds and hundreds of branches on the path of devotional service. There is no end to this. I would preach pure love unto the Supreme Lord and unite all these people.
Along with all my devotees and associates, I shall appear on earth. I shall relish the taste of ecstatic loving service unto Myself’.
Aichhana Srimukh vani shuniya Narada
Khandila shakala dukhha padaparashada
Chalila Narada muni vina bajaiya
Ei manah-katha-rase parabash haiya
Hearing these words from the Lord’s beautiful mouth, and by the mercy of the Lord’s feet, all of Narada’s miseries disappeared. Playing upon his vina and with his thoughts surcharged with the nectar of the Lord’s words, Narada Muni departed.