Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura provides a thorough description of ‘Namahatta’ in his newsletter ‘Godruma Kalpatavi’ (the desire-tree groves of Godruma). ‘Godruma’ is the second island of Nabadwip dham representing Kirtana (chanting). Composed about 120 years ago, this newsletter talks of a transcendental market of holy names (Nama-Hatta) wherein the holy names of the Supreme Lord, Sri Krishna, are systematically sold to customers who are willing to accept such a spiritual product. Based upon the currency of one’s faith and devotion for the Supreme Lord, anyone, regardless of one’s caste, creed, background, education, nobility, religion, etc is qualified to purchase the holy name from Namahatta. This article outlines the commodities, modes of Payment, and the roles and responsibilities of various devotees in charge of Namahatta, as described by Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakur in his Godruma Kalpatavi.
Commodities to be purchased from Namahatta
The headquarters of Sri Nama-Hatta, the marketplace of the holy name, is located at Sri Nabadwip dham. The following are the commodities that can be bought from Namahatta :
- Nama (Holy Names of Sri Krishna, the Supreme Lord) – compared to sugarcane juice
- Rupa-Yukta Nama (Holy Names of Sri Krishna, the Supreme Lord, imbued with His form) – Compared to liquid Molasses (gur)
- Guna-Yukta Nama (Holy Names of Sri Krishna, the Supreme Lord, that glorify His qualities) – Compared to solid Molasses (gur)
- Lila-Yukta Nama (Holy Names of Sri Krishna, the Supreme Lord, imbued with His pastimes) – Compared to Sugar
- Rasita Nama (Holy Names of Sri Krishna, the Supreme Lord, imbued with transcendental mellows) – Compared to rock Candy.
- Sarva-rasita-sikta-Nama (Holy name imbued with full potency of transcendental mellows) – Compared to lozenges made from rock Candy.
Rules for Payment at Namahatta
Pennies, rupees, dollars, Silver, Gold, etc cannot be utilized to buy commodities traded at Namahatta. Transcendental faith is the only admissible currency. Listed below are the various currencies acceptable at Nama-Hatta.
- Sraddha (faith) – Compared to Paisa with which Holy Name (Nama) can be purchased
- Nistha (steady devotional service) – Compared to two annas or 1/8th of silver with which Holy Name imbued with Lord’s form (Rupa-Yukta Nama) can be purchased.
- Ruci (taste) – Compared to four annas, or 1/4th of Silver with which holy Name imbued with Lord’s qualities (Guna-Yukta Nama) can be purchased.
- Asakti (attachment) – Compared to one-half of a silver coin and can be used to purchase Holy name imbued with Lord’s pastimes (Lila-Yukta Nama).
- Bhava or Rati (preliminary ecstatic love of God) – Compared to one silver coin and can be used to purchase Holy Name imbued with transcendental mellow (Rasita Nama).
- Prema (pure love of God) – Compared to a Gold coin and can be used to purchase Holy Name imbued with all the transcendental mellows (Sarva-rasita-sikta-Nama).
The trades at Namahatta are unlike anything in this world. When a customer purchases from Namahatta, and chants the holy name, he is reimbursed in full his original payment multiplied many times over. This happens due to the mercy of the Store Owner – Lord Nityananda and His partners.
Devotees in Charge of Namahatta
Srimad Bhagavatam, the great scripture, also known as the natural commentary of the Vedas and the essence of Upanishads, is the storehouse of holy Name. Srimad Bhagavatam is the embodiment of all transcendental mellows.
Mula Mahajan (Principal trader) – The principal trader, or the owner of the goods, at Sri Nama-Hatta is Sri Nityananda Prabhu.
Amsi Mahajan (Share traders) – The share traders of Namahatta are as follows :
Bengal – Advaita Acharya
Vrindavan – Rupa Goswami and Sanatana Goswami
Jagannath Puri – Svarupa Damodara Goswami and Ramananda Raya
The storekeepers of Nama-Hatta are as follows :
Bengal – Sri Gadadhar Pandita, Srimati Vishnupriya devi, Jahnava mata
Vrindavan – Srila Raghunath das Goswami
Jagannath Puri – Sri Paramananda Puri
The watchmen of Sri Nama-Hatta are as follows :
Bengal – Vamsi Vadanananda, Ramananda Vasu, Pundarika Vidyanidhi, Damodara Pandita, Jagadananda Pandita, Jagadish Pandita, Hiranya Pandita
Vrindavan – Lokanath Goswami, Raghava Pandita
Jagannath Puri – Haridas Thakur
The Treasurers of Nama-Hatta are as follows :
Bengal – Srivasa Pandita and his brothers, Acharyaratna
Vrindavan – Gopal Bhatta Goswami
Jagannath Puri – King Pratap Rudra
Lekhakas or Ganakas (Clerks or accountants)
The Clerks and Accountants of Nama-Hatta are as follows :
Bengal – Vrindavan das Thakur
Vrindavan – Raghunath Bhatta Goswami and Visvanatha Chakravarti
Jagannath Puri – Vaninatha Pattanayaka
Postr vargas (Cooks)
The cooks of Nama-Hatta are as follows :
Bengal – Jagannath Misra and others, Saci mata, Sita Thakurani, Malini devi
Vrindavan – Sanodiya Brahmana
Jagannath Puri – wife of Sarvabhauma Bhattacharya
Mudra Pariksakas or Poddars (Currency Examiners)
Following devotees are the currency examiners of Nama-Hatta :
Bengal – Gaudidasa Pandita, Abhirama Gopal Thakur, Kavi Karnapur
Jagannath Puri – Pradyumna Misra
Dalalas (Sales Agents)
Following devotees are the sales agents of the Holy Name :
Bengal – Isvara Puri, Keshava Bharati, Vidya Vachaspati
Vrindavan – Bhugarbha Goswami
Jagannath Puri – Madhavendra Puri
The weighers of Nama Hatta are as follows :
Bengal – Murari Gupta, Ramananda vasu
Vrindavan – Krishnadasa Kaviraj Goswami
Jagannath Puri – Kasi Misra
The servants of Nama Hatta are as follows :
Bengal – Buddhimanta Khan, Vijaya dasa Ratnabahu, Vanamali Pandita, Garuda Pandita, Narasimhananda, Ramai Pandita, and others.
Vrindavan – Balabhadra Bhattacharya
Jagannath Puri – Govinda, Krishnadasa, Kasisvara Pandita
These devotees are the porters of Nama-Hatta :
Bengal – Sanjaya, Suklambara, Kholavecha Sridhar, Nakula Bhramachari, Pradyumna Bhramachari
Sakatika Vahakas (Cart Pullers)
Following devotees are the Cart Pullers of Nama-Hatta :
Bengal – Vasudeva Datta, Vasudeva Ghosh, Sivananda sen, Gopinath Simha
Following are the customers of Namahatta : Sarvabhauma Bhattacharya, Jaga Madhai, Prakashananda Sarawati, and other devotees.