Srimad Bhagavatam 8.7.24
“tvaà brahma paramaà guhyaà
tvam ätmä jagad-éçvaraù”
tvam—Your Lordship; brahma—impersonal Brahman; paramam—supreme; guhyam—confidential; sat-asat-bhäva-bhävanam—the cause of varieties of creation, its cause and effect; nänä-çaktibhiù—with varieties of potencies; äbhätaù—manifest; tvam—you are; ätmä—the Supersoul; jagat-éçvaraù—the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
You are the cause of all causes, the self-effulgent, inconceivable, impersonal Brahman, which is originally Parabrahman. You manifest various potencies in this cosmic manifestation.
This prayer is offered to the impersonal Brahman, which consists of the effulgent rays of Parabrahman. Parabrahman is the Supreme Personality of Godhead (paraà brahma paraà dhäma pavitraà paramaà bhavän [Bg. 10.12]). When Lord Çiva is worshiped as Parabrahman, the worship is meant for Lord Viñëu.
The Topmost Vaishnava
We are reading here the prayers of the demigods to Lord Shiva. “vaiñëavänäà yathä çambhuù”. Lord Shiva is considered in the Srimad Bhagavatam to be the foremost, the greatest the supreme of all vaisnava or devotees of the Lord. Especially it is this particular story which illustrates the inconceivable extent of how dear he is to the Lord because Krishna favors most those persons who are the well wishers of the fallen conditioned souls in this world, because in this world every living entity is the child of god, “Ahaà béja-pradaù pita”.Krishna, who is the well wishing father of all, He has natural love for every living being and nature of that love is it manifests itself in the form of compassion. It is true thatKrishnais the supreme enjoyer. But He is perfectly complete. In His supreme enjoyment there is also transcendental distress but this distress is not like something material because it is totally selfless.
In Caitanya-caritamrita we read of Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. One day He approached Srila Haridas Thakur. Yesterday was the disappearance day of Srila Haridas Thakur and from the very short narration that I am about to offer to all of you, we can understand why Haridas Thakur was the most dear of all devotees to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Lord Caitanya was greatly depressed. He was in a mood where his heart crying out seeing the condition of His own children in this age of kali Yuga. Some are attached to fruitive activities for sense gratification, some are attached to mental speculation. Some are attached to those things which do not bear the fruit of bhakti or pure devotion, which is the only real satisfaction to the heart.
The Concern of the Lord
So Sri Caitanya Mahäprabhu began to reveal His confidential feelings to Srila Haridas Thakur. That these people they are suffering in great ignorance and hope against hope we cannot find the means to convince them accept the path of bhakti. Therefore although they are part and parcel of supreme, they are Sat-Cit-Ananda, eternal full of knowledge and full of bliss, they are wasting their valuable and precious time in illusion chasing after some mirage, some material sense enjoyment and thus suffering the repetition of birth and death. He explained to Haridas Thakur, “My heart is feeling greatly distress just to see in this condition”. So that is love. That is the love of god. Although sees everything perfect because He has the perfect source of everything, still He is the person and His expression of love for each part and parcel is to show them his infinity compassion. So at that time Srila Haridas Thakur began to explain to Caitanya Mahaprabhu that simply because you have descended into this world and chanted the holy name once all these people will be liberated. Just as Lord Ramachandra left this world all the inhabitants of Ayodhya went back to Vaikuntha just behind Him.
Respecting the Maha Prasad of Lord
Similarly just by coming to this world and chanting the holy name by your compassion all living entities within this entire universe will become liberated. In this way he was soothing the heart of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu with his loving words and Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu because he saw that Haridas Thakur with his words and with his life, he was willing to try to appeal this feeling in the Lord’s heart. He became the Namacarya, the dear most empowered associate of the supreme Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu to such an extent that when Haridas Thakur made his appeal to the Lord. This story is in Caitanya-caritamrita. It is explained that one time Govind, the servant of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu on behalf of the Lord came to the place of Srila Haridas Thakur to offer him some Prasad of Jagannath. At that time Haridas Thakur was laying on the ground. He was of a very old age and Govinda said, “Please get up and take this mahaprasad. Haridas Thakur replied, “I am in a diseased condition. I cannot take this Prasad because I have not completed the chanting of the holy name” Haridas Thakur had made the vow to chant the name of Krishna three lacs times each day and He would not even take any Prasad until he completed his vow. But then he got up and he said, “At the same time it is an offence to disrespect mahaprasad”. So he offered his respectful obeisances to the mahaprasad with beautiful prayers.
When Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu received this news, the next day He came to the Siddhabakula of Srila Haridas Thakur. He said, “Haridas are you not well?” and Haridas Thakur said, “My body is alright but spiritually I am in a diseased condition because I am unable to complete my vow of chanting the holy names of Sri Krishna”. “Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, KrishnaKrishna, Hare Hare/Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare”. Haridas Thakur is known as Namacarya. That means he was especially empowered by Sri Mahäprabhu by his example to establish the process in this age of Kali Yuga of attaining the perfection of life to chanting the holy names of Krishna. So he was just chanting on his Japa mala. This meditative process of japa he was chanting a fixed number of rounds everyday, 300,000 names of Krishna. It was to consider in his own mind, “That if he could not complete his vow, he was in a spiritually diseased condition”.
Spiritually Diseased Condition
Of course according to the time and the circumstances spiritual master adjust the discipline for his disciples so that they can advance in spiritual life. Thus the Acharya knows according to time and circumstances exactly what disciple requires and if we do not complete with great care our prescribed number of mantras each day then it is considered that we are in a very seriously diseased condition spiritually. This is the example given by Srila Haridas Thakur that we must accept chanting of Holy names very seriously. If we want to properly advance in spiritual life, we must know “kértanéyaù sadä hariù” that we should always chant the holy names of the lord but “______”. The six Goswamis said us, “One must chant the holy name with a strict vow”. Therefore upon initiation you make a strict vow that we will everyday chant the minimum which is given by our spiritual master of the chanting of the Hare Krishna mahamantra. So Haridas Thakur was lamenting in this way.
Last Desire Of Srila Haridas Thakur
Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu replied, “Haridas, you are the Namacarya. You have all attain the most perfect state beyond liberation of pure bhakti. There is no need for you to chant with such a vow with such discipline. You have descended in this world on my order simply to establish the glories of the holy name. In this way you have already successfully completed your vow. You have spread the glories of the Holy name throughout the Universe. He said, now it is no need in your old age for you to continue this very vow of chanting 3lacs names of lord every day. Then Haridas Thakur replied, “My dear lord I have one request, kindly hear it”. That soon I can understand the final chapter of your earthly Lila will take place. I do not want to see your disappearance in this world, which will be too pain for me. Therefore my great desire is let this body fall down in your divine presence. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu upon hearing it He became very sad. Srila Haridas Thakur, how can you say like this? It is your divine presence, your friendship, your love that gives willing to my life in this world. And Haridas Thakur, he replied, “My lord, if one insignificant insect dies, what will be the loss to this universe? I am most insignificant. It is by your causeless mercy that you have taken this most insignificant to be humble servant and gave some position. Although I am born in an untouchable out cast family, it is by your arrangement and by your grace that the great soul Advaita Acharya gave me the first portion of Mahaprasad of the Sraddha Ceremony which is the meant for the topmost Brahmana. My lord please there will be no loses to the world with me or without me. Kindly fulfill this one request. This is my great desire”.
The Divine Disappearance of Srila Haridas Thakur
So Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu at that time embraced Haridas Thakur and left to perform His noon duty. The next day Lord Caitanya Mahäprabhu along with his most confidential associate returned to Siddhabakula, the divine hata of Srila Haridas Thakur and Swarupa Damodar Goswami began the Kirtan, Srila Vakreswara Pundit began to dance. Then Srila Haridas Thakur he took the dust from the feet of the all of the Vaishnavas and then he laid before the Lord and He took lords lotus foot and placed it upon his heart. His eyes like two bamboo bees, fixed themselves on the beautiful moonlight face of Sri Gauranga with his lips with great feeling and love, he recited again and again the divine words, “Sri Krishna Caitanya, Sri Krishna Caitanya, and Sri Krishna Caitanya”. By the causeless mercy of Sri Gaurasundar and by His divine will the life air of Srila Haridas Thakur departed from that body. Upon seeing all the devotees were mystified. They all remember the divine disappearance of Bhisma Deva as he willingly left his body in the presence of the lord in the battle field of Kurukshetra.
Then the Kirtan increase and Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu in a mixed feeling of joy and the pain of separation, He lifted the body of Haridas Thakur and He began to dance. With the body of Haridas Thakur in His most merciful arms He was dancing again and again and again in great ecstasy of love. Then Swarupa Damodar Goswami, he stopped the lord. He said, My lord the funeral ceremony must continue now. So they built a palanquin which appeared to be like airship and they placed the divine form of Srila Haridas Thakur upon this palanquin and they began a procession to the ocean. On this procession, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and all of His followers were dancing. Dancing to the sound of the holy names “Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare”.
Then they reach the ocean Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu personally bathe the body of Haridas Thakur in the waters. Then they made a hole on the ground and gently placed the divine body in that hole and Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu personally decorated the body of Haridas Thakur with mahaprasad of Sri Jagannath with garlands and food stuffs and sandal wood and so on. Then with His own hands the Supreme Personality of Godhead began to cover the body with sand of the beach.
After Srila Haridas Thakur’s body was properly buried in this holy Samadhi that place raised platform to commemorate that this is a site of the Samadhi mandir of the Namacarya, who is most dear to the lord for His great compassion upon all living beings. At that time they all returned to the city ofJagannath Puriand Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu announced that there will be a feast for everyone to commemorate the divine disappearance of Haridas Thakur. Then Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu personally went for shop to shop begging arms from each shopkeeper but then Swarupa Damodar Goswami with several of His associates they told the lord that they will be doing this begging business and soon the great feast was prepared and many people came and Caitanya Mahaprabhu Himself began to distribute the Prasad but Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, he was so anxious to see the devotees taking nice Prasad that His hand would hold no less than any five man could eat. It was then the Swarupa Damodar Goswami explained to the Lord that no one will take this Prasad until you my Lord so when we seat with the sannyasi and partake. Then Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu sat with Brahmananda Bharati and Paramananda Puri and he began to take the Prasad and after Him every one began to enjoy this wonderful feast. At that time Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu was ordering each server to give them more and more. Until each of the participants would take this wonderful feast, Krishnadasa Kaviraja Goswami explains up to the neck. Then Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu began the Kirtan. The chanting of the holy name commences then Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu began to dance and that was the most beautiful dance. Vakreswara Pandit was dancing as well. In this way wonderful Sankirtan was performed in the honor of Haridas Thakur. Then Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu offered a benediction to the world, that anyone who has seen the divine disappearance of Haridas Thakur, anyone who had taken of the ceremony of burring at the beach, anyone who has attained this festival of mahaprasad and he is honored, in fact anyone who even hear this narration with great faith and devotion will become more dear to Krishna and will soon delivered from all the bondage of material existence.
Then Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu continued that by the divine arrangement of Sri Krishna, He has given to this world Srila Haridas Thakur but now by His divine arrangement He has taken away him back to His home. Srila Haridas Thakur is the crest jewel of all Vaishnavas within this entire creation. Now we are bereft of his divine association. Then He appeared to everyone to repeat after Him “All glories to Haridas Thakur” for propagating the glories of the holy name throughout the world. Then everyone repeated “All glories to Haridas Thakur”. Haridas Thakur established the divine importance of the chanting of the holy name of Krishna throughout the world. Then Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu in a mixed feeling of those joy that Haridas has returned to Krishna and sorrow that He is no longer in the divine presence of great soul, He returned to His home. Krishnadasa Kaviraja Goswami explains that this story is most important. Not only it is a show the glory of Srila Haridas Thakur but it is especially exhibits the intimate confidential love of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu upon his devotee and how the lord reciprocates with infinity love upon those who assist Him in His divine mission.
Today is also very auspicious and sacred day. It is the day that His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada accepted the renunciate order of life. Of course we know that Srila Prabhupada was in the same mood of infinite compassion that has exhibited in the life of Srila Haridas Thakur. Srila Prabhupada left everything in this world. He left his family, his children, and his business and then after that he even left the peaceful and tranquil atmosphere of Vrindavan to accept great hardships, great suffering, simply out of compassion for you and for me.
Sannyasa Ceremony of Our divine Master
In fact both stories about Srila Prabhupada verses so infinitely dear to the heart of the devotees is the hardship and sufferings that he enjoyed for the sake of uplifting the fallen souls. Krishna is perfect and complete and all that his devotee does is in the higher sense simply different varieties of ecstasy that ecstasy is in the love that motivates him. But often times that love is exhibited to enduring pain and suffering. But because of the sake of the others, it is not due to one’s selfish attachment to one’s own body or mind. It is considered perfect, pure, and spiritual by nature. So therefore when Srila Prabhupada endured several heart attacks in Jaladuta, when he was alone practically starving like a beggar on the streets ofNew Yorkat anytime he could have returned to Vrindavan but he did not. The devotees when hear this, it melts their hearts, they cry in love. This increases their love and appreciation for their guru maharaja and it is for this reason thatKrishnahas put His devotees into such conditions of life.
So accepting such sannyasa by Srila Prabhupada was identical to accepting such sannyasa of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu Himself. He accepted the very difficult condition of a sannyasi simply for the sake of uplifting fallen soul in this age of Kali yuga. So I would like to read today a lecture given by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, which delivered on the disappearance day of His Sanyasa Guru His Divine Grace Bhaktiprjnya Keshav Maharaja. This is beautiful lecture; I personally have heard rather than study this lecture for many many years because it gives the wonderful illumination of the humility and the divine compassion of the heart of Srila Prabhupada. This lecture was delivered on October, 21 1968 inWashington.
You Must Take Sannyasa-
Srila Prabhupada speaks, “One has to accept the renounced order from another person who is within the renounced order. So I never thought that I shall accept this renounced order of life. In my family life, when I was amidst my wife and children. Sometimes there is a dreaming of my spiritual master that he is calling me and I was following Him. When my dream was over, I was thinking, I was little horrified, oh guru maharaja wants me to become a sannyasi. How can I accept sannyasa. At that time I was feeling not very much that I have to give up my family and have to become a mendicant. At that time it was horrible feeling. Sometimes I would be thinking, no I cannot take sannyasa but then again I saw the same dream. So in this way, I was fortunate, (at that time Srila Prabhupada in the lecture begins to cry in a choked voice) my Guru Maharaja pulled me out from this material life. I have not lost anything. He was so kind upon me, I left three children, and I have got now three hundred children. So I am not a looser. This is the material conception. We think that we should be losing by acceptingKrishna. Nobody is losing. I say for my practical experience, I was thinking that how can I accept the renounced order of life. I cannot accept so much trouble but I retired from my family life. I was sitting alone in Vrindavan writing books. So this god brother who instated to me, “Bhaktivedanta prabhu, this tide has given me my family life”. It was offered me by the vaisnava society. So he insisted me. Not he insisted me but practically my spiritual master insisted me through him that you accept because without accepting the renounced order of life no body can become a preacher but he wanted me to become a preacher. So he forced me through this god brother, you accept. So unwillingly, I accepted and then I remembered that he wanted me to go to the western country. So I am feeling now very much obliged to my god brother that he carried out to worship my spiritual master and forced me to accept the sannyasa order. So this god brother His Holiness Keshava Maharaja is no more. He has enteredKrishna’s abode that I used to pass the resolution of revetment and sent them. So I have composed one verse also in this connection in Sanskrit that you “vairägya-vidyä-nija-bhakti-yoga”.
This Krishna Consciousness is vairagya Vidya. Vairagya Vidya means to become detached to this material world, that is called Vairagya Vidya and that is possible simply by the bhakti Yoga. So this is just like medicine. The child sometimes is afraid of taking medicine that also I have experienced. I my childhood when I became ill I was very stubborn. I won’t accept any medicine that my mother used to forced medicine within my mouth with the spoon. I was so obstinate. So any way similarly, I didn’t wanted to accept the sannyasa order but this god brother forced me, “You must”. “Apäyayan mäm”. He forcibly made me to take this medicine. “anbhikshu andham”. Anbhikshu means unwilling and andham means, one who is blind who can not see the future. The spiritual light is the brightest future. But the materialistic cannot see to it.
For the Vaishnavas the spiritual master, he forcefully asks, “You drink this medicine”. “apäyayan mäm anabhépsum andham sri Keshava bhakti prajnanam”. So this my god brother his name is Keshava, Bhaktiprajanam Keshava, kripam buddhi. So he did this favor upon me because he was an ocean of mercy. So we offer our obeisances to Vaishnavas “kripam bruddhi”. “väïchä-kalpatarubhyaç ca kåpä-sindhubhya eva ca” The Vaishnavas are the representative of the lord they are so kind. They build the ocean of mercy for distributing to the suffering humanity. “kåpämbudhir yas tam ahaà prapadye”. Now I am offering my respectful obeisance onto this, His holiness because he forcefully made me adopt the sannyasa order. Now he is no more in this world. He has entered in Krishna’s abode, so I am offering my respectful obeisance along with my disciples.
On the first day of my sannyasa, I never thought but I remembered that I have to speak in English. So I remembered, on that sannyasa day, when there was the reception, so I first of all I spoke in English. That was all arrangement ofKrishnahigher authorities. We are writing like this. “ undersigned members of the International Society of Krishna Consciousness in co-operated in a condemns meeting under the presidency of His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. Today is the 21st October, 1968 in our – branch, express our profound – on hearing of the passing of His divine grace Om Vishnu pad Sri Srimad Bhaktiprajnayan Keshava Goswami maharaja, the sannyas guru preceptor of our spiritual master.
Then in October 6, 1968 that is at our head quarter residence in Navadvipa Bengal. We offer our respectful obeisances on to the lotus feet of Sri Srimad Bhaktiprajnayan Keshava Maharaja with the following verse composed on this occasion by our spiritual master. It is described by Srila Prabhupada.
Beginning Of a World Movement
After he left his family affairs, he went to the city of Jhansi; he was an invited guest to give the series of lectures. While he was there, he was offered in a property to be utilized to establish his mission. Seeing the quarrel amongst his god brothers that was preventing the expansion of his guru maharaja’s mission, Srila Prabhupada decided to start, an organization which will be like to in United nations which would have all persons of all religions to understand the supreme truth based on pure devotional service. Therefore he established his mission initially in Jhansi which he personally named “The league of devotees”. So one of the year Srila Prabhupada worked very hard, trying to establish this place but then the governor’s wife decided that that facility should be used as club for women. So she took it away from Srila Prabhupada. Soon after that Srila Prabhupada went to Vrindavan, where he resided in Vamshi Gopal temple. There he was writing his Back to Godhead magazine. He was going toDelhivery often by train. He was collecting the funds for the printing of this magazine. He had no one to help him. He was over seeing the printing of magazine.
Of course as we know, he was doing all the writing and editing of the magazine and then he was personally going to the streets and distribute copies with his own hands. At that time he had no money except a little help he gained from sympathetic supporters. But because people are generally not so anxious to help a person who does not have a big name for a spiritual mission he was running more and more on dept, so he was not able to even pay to the printer. But somehow or other byKrishna’s divine grace things were going on. Later on Srila Prabhupada shifted his residence to Radha Damodar Temple. He considered it to be the most sacred and auspicious place because this is the place where the Six Goswamis would come together to discuss the expansion of Sri Caitanya Mahäprabhu’s movement throughout the world. It was there that Srila Bhaktisiddhant Saraswati Thakur appeared to him several times on dream – Srila Prabhupada Srila Prabhupada to accept the renounced order of life.
Once Srila Prabhupada approached one of his very beloved god brothers and friends Srila Keshava Maharaja. Srila Keshava maharaja very anxiously said to Srila Prabhupada, “You must accept sanyasa”. If you want to give your dignity to preaching mission, you must accept sanyasa. Because in the Gaudiya Vaishnava tradition, generally the leaders of preaching mission are the sannyasis. So Srila Prabhupada hearing the divine words of his spiritual master through his own godbrother he accepted the renounced order of life. He accepted that the Keshava Gaudiya math inMathura, there even to this day you can go and sit in the beautiful temple room, where Srila Prabhupada accepted the renounced order of life.
Grateful for the Eternal Debt
After accepting sannyasa he was given the name Abhaya Charanarbinda Bhaktibedanta Swami. Shortly after that he began to write his divine translation of Srimad Bhagavatam. So this is a very very auspicious and sacred day. It is the day that we can remember with great love, the divine mercy of His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada upon all of us. How in the mood of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu he accepted so much opposition and hardship simply to give us the opportunity to be Krishna Consciousness. So the dept that we all got from Srila Prabhupada a great Acharya can never be understood. But somehow or other we must endeavor with our life and soul to make some feeble attempt to repay this great dept, the dept of great mercy. What is most pleasing to him is simply when we assist him by becoming the servant of the servant of the servant of His divine grace and pushes forward his great mission of the Krishna Consciousness movement. So whatever we can do we must do. Do not worry, do not be afraid, whatever inconvenience or obstacles come on our path accept them with love and continue on committing oneself more and more and more to this great mission.
Srila Prabhupada would often tell us that he was an old man and there was little that he could do but he was thankful to his disciples who are assisting him in this divine mission. He tell us continue chanting the holy name and living a pure life and with great determination work harder and harder to expand the mercy of Sri Gaurasundara and His Sankirtan movement to all corners of this world. Srila Prabhupada considered that he had a dept to his spiritual master.
I Thank You all very much.