Welcoming vaishnavas to holy land of Vrindavan
oà ajïäna-timirändhasya jïänäïjana-çaläkayä
cakñur unmélitaà yena tasmai çré-gurave namaù
çré-caitanya-mano-‘bhéñöaà sthäpitaà yena bhü-tale
svayaà rüpaù kadä mahyaà dadäti sva-padäntikam
I welcome everyone to our Sri Vrindavan Dhaam parikramä. Some very special guest, very senior associates of His Divine Grace AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada have joined us; his holiness Chandrasekhar Swami maharaj, her grace Mälaté Mataji, her grace Närtaké Mataji, his grace Bhéma Prabhu & his good wife. It is said that Vrindavan & Navadweep are not different. The essence of Sri Navadweep Dhaam has come to bless us with the mercy of Sri Sri Gaur-Nitai during our Vrindavan yatra in the form of the official head pujari of both ISKON Chandrodaya Mandir as well as Radhagopinath Mandir. Let us loudly welcome Jananivas Prabhu, Lokavarëatam Prabhu who has descended from Florida.
Krsna descends to attract conditioned soul
In the Bhagavad Gita lord Sri Krsna has spoken,
vinäçäya ca duñkåtäm
sambhavämi yuge yuge
That to annihilate the miscreants, to religious- establish the principles of religion & to give protection to his devotees, he descends to this world gain & again.
janma karma ca me divyam
evaà yo vetti tattvataù
tyaktvä dehaà punar janma
naiti mäm eti so ‘rjuna
“One, who knows the transcendental nature of the appearance and activities of the lord, becomes purified from within & without, never has to take birth again in this material world. Srila Prabhupada has revealed to us that, to kill demons, to re- establish the principles of religion, the lord can do either through his material energies or through his personal representatives ,however when the lord descends in this world, it is especially to perform such all attractive activities to give pleasure to & attract the heart of all living beings. Srimad Bhagvatam explains that, just as there are waves in the ocean, there are incarnations of supreme personality of godhead that appear in this world.
Krsna, the ultimate destination
ete cäàça-kaläù puàsaù
kåñëas tu bhagavän svayam
Of all such expansions, plenary expansions & incarnations, Krsna is the ultimate source; he is full complete supreme personality of godhead. Beyond this earth planet, are the upper planetary systems, Bhür loka, Bhuvar loka, Swarga loka, Mahar loka, Jana loka, Tapa loka, Brahma loka? Beyond the brahma loka is the Viraja, the dividing river between the material & spiritual existence. When one crosses Viraja one crosses into the Brahma jyoti, the unlimited all pervading spiritual sky, which are the bodily rays from the beautiful form of Lord Sri Krsna. Within the brahma jyoti are innumerable Vaikuntha planets, where the supreme lord lives in his eternal forms just according to his devotee’s natural inclination to worship. In all Vaikuntha planets, lord Narayan is existing, reciprocating pure love of his devotees. The top most of all planets of Vaikuntha loka is the Krsna planet that is the place where, Rasaraj, Sri Kaushalya resides reciprocating loving exchanges that are not to be found anywhere else in all material world & spiritual existence. It is mädhurya Dhaam, where the sweetness of Krsna’s beauty, where the charm of his intimate dealings of his devotees completely overcomes the recognition of the lord’s supreme majestic opulence. It is this Sri Vrindavan Dhaam that is the ultimate destination to be attained by all souls.
Glories of Vrindavan Dhaam
Once in a day of brahma, the supreme personality of godhead descends in his original form in this world that means approximately once every four billion, three hundred million years. Sri Vrindavan Dhaam ki jai. When the lord appears in this world along with him he brings his intimate eternal associates & his eternal abode. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur has explained that, the Vrindavan of this world is called Gokul; the Vrindavan of the spiritual world is Goloka. There is absolutely no difference between the two. Krsna has manifested the spiritual world on this earth, a place of birth & death out of his infinite causeless mercy. Vrindavan is called Chintamani Dhaam; it is the place where all one’s spiritual desires can be completely fulfilled to those who are sincere in their prayers, in their devotional service & in their chanting of the holy names. Krsna performed his lila in Vrindavan for approximately eleven years & nine months, before going to Mathura & then to Dwarka, during his lila in Vrindavan, Krsna performed such sweet all attractive past times, that anyone who hears them with a sincere & receptive heart, anyone who speaks them or even remembers them will certainly attain the ultimate destination of pure devotional service.
Lord Caitanya explores Vrindavan Dhaam
Five hundred years ago lord Krsna appeared as the Yuga avatar, Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu; Krsna searching to understand & experience the sweetness of the supreme love of Shrimati Radharani. In the year 1515, Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu personally came to Vrindavan. It is described, when he was living in Puri, just a thought of, and his ecstasy of love would increase hundreds of times. When he was travelling to Vrindavan through the Jarikhanda forest with the expectation of coming to this holy land, his ecstasy increase hundreds of times beyond that. When he entered into the district of Mathura, his ecstasy increased hundreds of times beyond that. When Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu was travelling through the twelve forests of Vrindavan, his ecstasy increased unlimitedly. When Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu came here, Vrindavan was practically a forgotten place, it was a deep jungle. The holy places of Krsna’s Lila over four thousand five hundred years were practically lost & forgotten. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is Radha & Krsna in one form. When he returned to Vrindavan, the inhabitants of Vrindavan, the deer’s, the parrots, the monkeys they all came to greet him in great ecstatic love. Here he discovered many of the eternal places where Krsna performed his divine Lilas. He returned to Jagannath Puri, on the request of his devotees & sent Rupa Goswämé, Sanatan Goswämé, Srila Raghunath Das Goswämé, Srila Gopal Bhatt Goswämé, Srila Raghunath Bhatt Goswämé & Srila Jiva Goswämé, the six Goswämé specifically to establish the holy places of Vrindavan. Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s vision was that, the whole world comes to become purified in sanctified atmosphere of Vrindavan. Srila Prabhupada explained that, in Vrindavan Dhaam, any devotional service one performs has hundreds of times the power to purify our hearts. And during this month of Kartik, the month which is personally overseen by Shrimati Radharani; Rupa Goswämé explains that, to perform devotional service in the land of Vrindavan in the month of Kartik will bear fruits thousands of time greater than in ordinary times. Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu sent the six Goswämé to actually establish Vrindavan as a holy place of pilgrimage, to find & to excavate the holy places of Krsna’s past times, to establish beautiful temples with deity worship, to write spiritual literature extracting from all the Vedas the essence of all knowledge; pure unalloyed devotional service to Sri Sri Radha & Krsna. And by their lives example to teach the world, what is real Bhakti, what is real renunciation. mahäjano yena gataù sa panthäù, the ultimate path of truth is to follow the footsteps of great souls. Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu personally empowered the six Goswämé, to show the way of the world to world.
The forgotten Vrindavan
As the years went by, the glorious influence that was created by the six Goswämé became very much minimized. The conqueror Aurangzeb, he destroyed many temples, the deities were hidden or taken to various places. In those situations there was much suffering, much deviation. At that time the great acharya, Vishvanath Chakravarti Thakur he appeared to re- establish the true purity of pure devotional service in Vrindavan. As we know, in this material world unless great souls are fighting fearlessly to protect us from the influence of mäyä; everything goes down. It is the law of material nature, we have the law of gravity; everything is forced down. Similarly human consciousness over time dependency is to push the consciousness down to the lowest levels of materialistic life. Therefore, evaà paramparä-präptam, it is essential that these great acharyas of the parampara protect the true principles of religion. When Bhaktivinod Thakur came to Vrindavan, it was over run by dacoits. He re-established the principles of pure Bhakti in the line of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. And Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur, he came to Vrindavan to perform the Braj Maëòala parikramä with thousands & thousands of devotees. It was Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur that ordered his divine grace AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada to take the message of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu to the whole world. What Lord Sri Caitanya envisioned to the six Goswämé, of people from all over the world coming to Vrindavan to learn, how to love Sri Sri Radha & Krsna was fulfilled by Srila Prabhupada. Living in his simple room at RadhaDamoder temple, he was very satisfied, but he left, to travel all around the world thirteen times; established Krsna-Balaräm temples, so that devotees from all around India, from all the continents of the planet to come together & be purified by chanting the holy names & rendering devotional service in the supreme abode of Vrindavan. Srila Prabhupada performed such immense sacrifice of inconceivable compassion to facilitate us being here today. Therefore we begin our Braj Mandala Parikramä by first offering our deepest gratitude & loyal devotion at the lotus feet of his divine grace AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada & pray for his mercy. Srila Prabhupada ki jai. Srila
Lord Caitanya in Jagannath Puri
Prabhupada in his Caitanya Charitamrita tells a beautiful story: in Jagannath Puri, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu would perform the Rath yatra with his devotees, each & every year. The Jagannath temple represents the Dwarka mood of devotional service & the Guëòicä temple at Sundaräcala represents Sri Vrindavan Dhaam. The Ratha yatra is the mood of Radharani & the Gopis bringing Krsna from his majestic mood in Kurushetra back to Vrindavan, for nine days lord Jagannath, Baladeva & Subhadrä enjoyed the past times of Vrindavan in Sundaräcala. During that time Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu & his devotees, they stayed in the Jagannath Vallabh garden. Lord Sri Caitanya saw these gardens as non different than Vrindavan. How they enjoyed the sweetest kirtans of the holy names in the gardens of Vrindavan in the presence of Jagannath. One festival is called the Herapancami, in this festival Lakshmi Devi comes to chastise lord Jagannath for being away from Jagannath temple for so long. Maharaj Pratapa Rudra, he very much wanted Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu & his devotees to be satisfied. So he called the super attendants of the temple & told them, I want this Herapancami festival to be performed like never been performed before. Whatever expenses required; let us have a glorious festival for the pleasure of the lord.
Lord Caitanya immersed in hearing the glories of Vrindavan
At this time, Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu turned to Swarup Damodar Goswämé & he inquired, Swarup Damodar Goswämé, please tell us about the rasas of Vrindavan. Swarup Damodar Goswämé began to explain with great great realization, the pure love of Radharani & inhabitants of Vrindavan for lord Shamasundar. The devotees were ecstatic to hear this, but then Shrivas Thakur very much smiling, he interrupted. He said, just see my Lakshmi Devi, the opulences that she resides within in the holy Dhaam of Vaikuntha are unparalleled. As far as Vrindavan is concern, Vrindavan consist of some twigs, some flowers, some leaves, a few peacock feathers & a plant called Guïjä. In Vrindavan your Gopis they knows cows, they boil the milk, they churn the milk into yoghurt but in Vaikuntha my Lakmi she sits on a royal opulent majestic throne made of the most precious jewel. Lord Sri Caitanya smiling, he looked at Shrivas Thakur & said, Shrivas, you are acting identical to Narada Muni, I think that, the supreme personality of godhead’s opulences has very much influenced you. But Swarup Damodar Goswämé, he is a pure devotee of Vrindavan, he doesn’t know anything about these opulences; he only knows pure devotional service. Let us hear from him, what is Vrindavan. Swarup Damodar Goswämé, he said, my dear Shrivas you have forgotten the natural opulence of Vrindavan. The opulences of Vrindavan are like an unlimited vast ocean in comparison to the opulence of Dwarka in Vaikuntha are not even a particle of a single drop. Vrindavan is Chintamani Dhaam, it is the place where lord’s opulences are complete, it is the place where everything that exists is constituted of touchstone, where each tiny particle of dust or sand is more precious than the most valuable jewel of Vaikuntha. Vrindavan is place where the Chintamani stone decorates the lotus feet of the simple maid servants of the maid servants of the maid servants of the Gopis. Vrindavan is that place where there are vast forests & every tree in that forest is kalpavåkña, it is a desire tree that can fulfil all one’s inner most heart’s desires to serve the supreme personality of godhead. And the vrajaväsés, they have no desires for anything but to enjoy the fruits of those trees. In Vrindavan there are vast pastures grounds with pure fragrant green grasses, in those pastures are unlimited kämadhenu cows, wish fulfilling cows, so beautiful moving about the pasture like clouds in the sky. Their milk is ambrosial like nectar, they give unlimited milk & the vrajaväsés are thoroughly satisfied & desire nothing else. In Vrindavan the Gopis are the super goddess of fortune, even the least of the gopis are loved millions of times excels Lakshmi, the goddess of fortune in Vaikuntha. In Vrindavan, all speech that the people speak is music, all motion is dance, all water nectar & the constant companion of everyone is the sweet melodious flute of Lord Sri Krsna. This constitutes the real opulence of Vrindavan. When Shrivas Thakur heard this, he began to dance in ecstasy smiling, laughing, slapping his hands against his body, making very very incredible noises; he went wild with love of God. As lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu saw, Shrivas Thakur dancing in ecstasy hearing the glories of Vrindavan; he said to Swarup Damodar Goswämé, go on singing these glories of Vrindavan Dhaam. Swarup Damodar Goswämé began to continue his, incredible explanations of the opulences of Vrindavan Caitanya Mahaprabhu began to dance & dance, and he became so ecstatic in his dance upon hearing the glories of Braj bhumi that, he assumed the mood of Shrimati Radharani. It became so uncontrollable, hours & hours & hours went by; Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu actually assumed the very form of Shrimati Radharani before the devotee’s eyes as he danced. When Nityänanda Prabhu saw that, here in Jagannath Puri Lord Sri Caitanya is dancing with the form & in mood of Shrimati Radharani; he offered from a distance his prayers & his obeisances. The kirtan went on all morning & all afternoon, there were four kirtan parties all singing as Swarup Damodar Goswämé continued narrating the glories of Vrindavan Dhaam & Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu danced & danced with all ecstatic symptoms manifesting from his body. Now when kirtan went on for long long time, the only person who could stop the kirtan was Nityänanda Prabhu. But on this day seeing that, Lord Sri Caitanya was in Radharani’s form, he could come close to the lord; he kept his distance. So therefore the kirtan would not end. Mahaprabhu’s ecstasy was so great that, the kirtan could not end but at the same time the devotees became so tired, that the kirtan could not continue. Caitanya Mahaprabhu said, go on singing. Swarup Damodar Goswämé stopped; said my dear lord the devotees are very much fatigued, please be merciful to them. Thus Caitanya Mahaprabhu came back into external consciousness. And there in Jagannath vallabh garden, with a wonderful feast of Jagannath Prasad waiting for all of them. Sri Gauranga Mahaprabhu ki jai.
The vision to see Vrindavan
Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu in this wonderful story, revealed his deepest love & appreciation for the supreme abode of Sri Vrindavan. He wanted to show through Swarup Damodar Goswämé that, we should not see Vrindavan with material vision. Srila Prabhupada explained to us that, there is a fine layer covering Vrindavan; it is yoga mäyä. In order to perceive the Dhaam as it is, is not possible with our mortal eyes made of flesh & blood. The spiritual world cannot be seen through such a mechanism, the spiritual world can only be seen by our faith in the words of the great acharyas & by our humility & our devotion. Do not commit offences by thinking anything in Vrindavan to be ordinary. Those great personalities, who have completely purified hearts, they see the divine past times of Sri Sri Krsna material Balaräm, Sri Sri Radhesham continuously taking place in Vrindavan. But some time we see sewage running in the street & hogs bathing in that sewage & walking around, sometime we see poverty, some time we see condition that may be not very sanitary. This is our vision. Actually behind all of this, the lord is performing his unlimited past times. Gour Kishore Das Babaji maharaj when he was living in Vrindavan, one time the devotees offered their obeiscences in the dust & they got up & started cleaning the dust of their body & their hair. Gour Kishore Das Babaji chastised them, he said, do you not know the every particle of this dust is valuable than all the jewels of heavenly planets or Vaikuntha; & you are taking it so ordinary, you have been blessed by this dust & you are simply pushing it off as it is something ordinary. There are three very very powerful forms of Sri Radharani’s mercy in Vrindavan, there is the dust, there is the hill called, Govardhana & there is the nectarine water of Yamuna. And one, who comes in contact with these forms of lord’s love, becomes greatly purified. Srila Prabhupada taught us that, we have to see by our ears, we have to see through the faith that we have in our hearts; in the word of great souls. It is the great personalities that reveal to us, the holy Dhaam. I remember, in 1971 in December, I have good fortune of being here in Sri Vrindavan; when his divine grace Srila Prabhupada took all of us on parikramä to the various holy places, explaining nicely & teaching us how to honour & worship the lord’s abode. To be in association of the devotees, hearing the narrations of the lord will give us a proper understanding & perception of what is Vrindavan.
Dealing with Vrajavasis & devotees
We are here for only about ten days, in this great month of Kartik; we should be very very attentive to make maximum spiritual advancement during this time, and there should be no talk of this material world, no gossips, no rumours, no politics these should be driven out of the Vrindavan forever. I remember during that time in 1971, one devotee treated harshly when vrajaväsés who actually tried to cheat him of his money, & Srila Prabhupada told that devotee to leave Vrindavan. You cannot disrespect the vrajaväsés; you do not understand who they are. What to speak of the vrajaväsés; Prabhupada told us the hogs & monkeys of Vrindavan were Goswämé in their previous lives that they made aparädha. And therefore in Vrindavan by always laying in the dust for their whole life & suffering in that situation, they become completely purified & at the end of their lives these monkeys & hogs will return to spiritual world. This is the vision Srila Prabhupada has given us. So at every moment, hear & chant the glories of the lord in the mood of servant of the servant of the servant. There are about thousand devotees within this congregation, each one of you should be the servant of all others. This is the Vrindavan atmosphere; where everyone else is important except me, everyone else is prabhu; I am das das das anu das.
trinad api sunicena, taror api sahishnuna
amanina manadena, kirtaniya sada hari
Unless we adopt this consciousness, we are far far away from Vrindavan Dhaam. Rup Goswämé taught us that, unless one is humble like a blade of grass, tolerant like tree, ready to offer all respect to others & expect none in return; one cannot understand, what Vrindavan is. So we should be very respectful, all helpful to serve all others, try to put everyone else before ourselves. In this spirit we will make wonderful spiritual progress.
By humility we can understand Vrindavan
While in Vrindavan be very eager to hear the message of Krsna, however tired you may be, however much your limbs may be paining, put it aside to you to return to Bombay or whatever you are from. While in Vrindavan, completely engross your mind with great enthusiasm hearing the narrations of supreme personality of godhead & during kirtans please dance with great enthusiasm & loudly chant the holy names, Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare Hare Ram Hare Ram Ram Ram Hare Hare. We should be in a prayerful mood, praying to the dust of Vrindavan, praying to trees of Vrindavan, praying to the lotus feet of vaishnavas & ultimately to Prabhupada, the acharyas, & the lotus feet of Sri Sri Radhashamasundar, that we can please them by genuinely surrendering in the mood of servant of servant of their servants. We cannot push our way into Vrindavan, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur taught us like this. The intimate Lilas of Vraja bhumi can only be realised to one who is truly humble & surrendered at the lotus feet of Sri Guru & Gauranga. The glories of lord Krsna purify all those fortunate souls who hear & chant them.
The story of an American & a monkey
Srimad Bhagvatam describes… although these monkeys are certainly transcendentalist please be careful. Krsna has purified many of his devotees through monkeys. I remember when I was living here in 1971, two people, from America happened to come to Vrindavan & one them was secretary of very very famous author of spiritual books in the western world, & he rejected that person because he saw inconsistency in his books & in his life. So somehow he came to Vrindavan & he was stating here only until he received the letter. This letter was life & death decision that had to be made, he was waiting for the news, every day he would go to post office near Bankebihari temple waiting for this letter, asking, has the letter come for me? But letter wouldn’t come. He was so eager for this letter. Finally one day the letter came & he said, I don’t want to read this until I am in a very very secluded place, where I can completely absorb myself in the content of this letter, my whole life rest on this letter. So, I said, why don’t we walk through Nidhu vana & Seva kunja area? Because then we will find a nice quiet place there. So, as we were walking in Seva kunja one monkey just went right up to him & put his hand in this person’s bag; I saw this with my own eyes. And took the letter out & jumped on to a tree, then he jumped to the next tree, to the next tree, to the next tree until he disappeared. This person was weeping, he was crying, he fell tot ground, he said, what am I going to do? We have to find this monkey. So he stayed in Vrindavan, he didn’t know what else to do, where else to go. Sometime monkeys steal devotees glasses, Krsna wants to show you that, you cannot through adjusting your material vision can you see Vrindavan.
Krsna & Balaräm in Vrindavan
There are blind vaishnavas who are seeing the eternal Lilas of Krsna, because they have pure faith & devotion, because they have taken the shelter of the lotus feet of Sri Sri Radhashamasundar. At the time when sun would set, Krsna & Balaräm with cowherd boys would return to the village of Vraja. Generally Krsna would climb the tallest tree in area; often times the Kadamba tree or a Banyan tree & he would play his flute & call each of his cows & when Krsna would call the cows, each cow would hear Krsna, calling her own personal name. They felt so spiritual touched by this gesture of Shamasundar; they would come running with tears in their eyes with their tails raised, galloping to meet with Krsna. Krsna-Balaräm & the Gopas, when they would enter into the village of Vraja, their hairs were decorated by the dust raised by the hoofs of the cows. Within their hairs, there were peacock feathers & flowers from the forest of Vrindavan. Krsna was glancing so charmingly & smiling so beautifully; the Gopis of Vrindavan, from early they were simply counting the moments to Krsna & Balaräm would return. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu explained that, for such devotees a moment seems like twelve years or more. The Vraja Gopis of Vrindavan would simply immerse themselves in singing the beautiful glories of Krsna, just to somehow or rather survive the separation as he was playing in the pasture grounds with his friends. When he returned in the evening, their eyes were like bumble bees, drinking the pure nectar of the lotus face of Mukunda & thus all the pain of their separation was released. Krsna accepted their love, & they understood this within the core of their heart. Yashoda & Rohini, when they saw Krsna & Balaräm respectively they would embrace them. After being in the pasture ground all day, Rohini & Yashoda they would squeeze every single limb of their body to make sure, that they were in good health & that they were safe. They would bring Krsna & Balaräm into their homes & give them bath in fragrant scented water, massage them with fragrant oils, they would dress their bodies with beautiful garments, decorate them with jewels, put garments & fine oils on their bodies & they would feed sumptuous dinner for Krsna & Balaräm. After which they would put them in beautiful beds arranged for them & Krsna & Balaräm would happily sleep through the night. The next morning they would rise early, blow their buffalo horns to call their cowherd boyfriends & the cows to return.
Why Balaräm did not go to forest
One day, Krsna with the Gopas entered into the pasture ground of Vrindavan with the cows; on this particular day, Balaräm did not come. There are many reasons that the various acharyas explains. You see, the previous day Balaräm killed Dhenukäsura. I remember, one of the first times I met Shrinath ji Prabhu. He told me this story, Krsna came back to Vrindavan & he said do you know what happened today in Talavan; lord Balaräm, he performed such a herculean, incredible tasks. Do you know what he did? Everyone was very excited…. what did he do? What did he do? He said today Balaräm demonstrated such extra ordinary prowess, he killed an ass. So, Balaräm said, Krsna tomorrow I am not going with you again. So the next day Balaräm stayed back.
River Yamuna poisoned by Kaliya
The gopas led by Krsna came to this part where we are sitting now, in this December time the sun was scorching, it was hot & the cowherd boys were suffering very much by great thirst. Here was a lake which was connected to Yamuna; with great enthusiasm & all the cowherds boys drank the water of this lake, but within the water was a deadly poison. All the gopas & the cows fell unconscious, they became lifeless. Lord Krsna seeing all of his friend, as well the cows lying on the bank of Yamuna lake dead; he smiled, he casted nectarine glance upon them & immediately they came back to life. The gopas, they all began to look at each other with great astonishment; what just happened? The lake was poisoned by the presence of the son of Kadrü. Kadrü happened to be one of the daughters of Daksha, her son was Kaliya; he was a massive venomous snake, this Kaliya, he was the embodiment of fear, he was like a burning ball of fire in the belly of Yamuna, he was like an incurable disease. He created such powerful poisonous effect within this lake that if the bird happens to be flying even high up above the lake the vapours of the water would poison & burn the bird dead. If the wind came & just took the mist from this water & anything that touched by that mist, immediately died. In fact within eight miles of Kaliya Lake nothing lived. The water was deep black & Kaliya, he had a mystic siddhi called Jala stava; by this mystic siddhi you can make water into solid objects. He built the entire city under the water of Yamuna & nothing could live except his wives & his children.
Krsna’s mercy is the medicine for six anarthas
This Kadamba tree that we are sitting under today was the only thing alive in that vicinity. The acharyas explains that, Garuda in the past, he knew Krsna will perform his Lila here so he put nectar on the tree to keep it alive. And others commentators of Srimad Bhagvatam; Srila Prabhupada explains that, the tree was actually dead but Krsna climbed it & as soon as Krsna’s lotus feet touched the Kadamba tree immediately flourished back in full life. He explained how Krsna glanced upon the dead cowherds boys & brought them to life; this is very important because we are all spiritually dead, spiritually we are all lifeless, we have all been poisoned by envy, by lust, by pride, by greed, anger & illusion. We have been poisoned by our false egoistic desires to enjoy separate from Krsna. Only if Krsna caste his merciful glance upon us; can we come back to our real spiritual lives & this is the whole purpose of Bhakti. Somehow or other become dear to Krsna, by our humble sincere service to his servants. When Krsna is pleased with us & he cast his merciful glance upon us; we will be spiritually revived.
Krsna takes on Kaliya
Krsna climbed to the top of this Kadamba tree in a very very playful mood, first he pulled back his hair with both his hands, then he re-tied his turban, then readjusted his belt, began to flap his arms & sing a beautiful song, then he dove directly into Kaliya’s lake. Krsna was heavier than the universe; he went deep deep down into the lakes, it created such a commotion that although was such a small child; the impact of him hitting the water caused the entire lake of poison to over flow on all sides over one hundred bows in length. Krsna agitated the water so much that the water just burst out into ferocious flames. In that setting of flaming water, black ugly poison, Krsna was swimming around very playfully just splashing the waves, making loud loud sound & smiling & laughing fearlessly. Kaliya was terribly insulted by this… intolerable; he was furious, he came out of the lake. Kaliya had one thousand hoods, of them one hundred & one were prominent. He looked upon Krsna, seeing the beauty of Krsna he was astounded; such charm, such sweetness that instead of falling in love Krsna he became envious of Krsna, he pounced upon Krsna, he beat Krsna right in the chest & then coiled his body around the delicate form of Shamasundar. When lord Krsna in the coils of Kaliya, Kaliya expanded his body to as monstrous size & began to squeeze with all his strength, trying to crush little Gopal, he squeezed & he squeezed then he squeezed. But Gopal just smilingly remained. So Kaliya could not tolerate this, he expanded his body more & more & more in monstrous proportion & squeezed with all of his strength & kept squeezing until he became exhausted. Meanwhile Krsna just remained motionless within the coils of Kaliya demon. When the cowherd boys & cows saw Krsna in this condition; they began to weep & cry piteously, they cried out, alas alas we cannot live seeing this. How will we survive, we cannot bear the sight; please Krsna come back, but Krsna remained motionless. Cowherd boys fell to the ground rolling in the dust of Vrindavan suffering miserably.
Vrajavasis struck with grief
At that time inauspicious moments pervaded the whole of Vraja bhumi. Srila Prabhupada explains there are three types of inauspicious moments; those which manifest in the earth, the sky & in the body. There were earthquakes & the jackals on the ground in the middle of the day were howling at the sun, the sun in the sky became dark, dull it had no effulgence & the sky appeared to be covered with smoke. The left side of the men was throbbing & the right side of the women was throbbing; which is greatly inauspicious. Seeing these inauspicious moments, Nandamaharaj, Yashoda, the community of Vrajavasis immediately became terribly alarmed thinking, some danger must have some upon Krsna. That is the nature of devotees; any situation that comes upon them they immediately remember Krsna the residence of Vrindavan their only thought, their only desire, their only reason to live was the pleasure of Krsna. They became beside themselves in confusion & grief; what has happened, what is happening, something must have happened to Krsna we must protect him. Meanwhile Balaräm he was smiling, he knew exactly what was happening. Balaräm started to laugh & he was thinking within his heart that, Krsna never ever plays with me in my form of Shesa Näga, but now he is playing with this insignificant mundane ordinary snake. There is no danger. The residence of Vrindavan, they began to follow the beautiful foot prints of Krsna. Krsna’s foot prints are distinguished because they have all auspicious marks ornamenting them. in Vrindavan the cowherd men, the cowherd women, the cowherd boys, the cowherd girls even all the animals the peacocks, the monkeys, the lions, the tigers, the deer’s they all made a unanimous agreement that no one will ever step on the footprint of Gopal. This is the ornament of the earth; they all observed this etiquette & the foot prints of Krsna were sacred. Nanda Maharaj & Yashoda & the gopas & the gopis began to chase out the foot prints of Krsna. In fact there was such a desperate urgent alarm, everyone was running to the site. When I say, everyone, the acharyas explain that means everyone, even the tiny little babies got up on their feet & started running, even the old people who could not walk started running; Krsna was in danger, we have to go to try to help him. So here we find that whole Vrajaväsé community running & running & finally they came to the point where they could see the cowherd boys rolling in the ground weeping piteously. They saw the cows with tears flowing from their eyes motionless, then they looked up & they witnessed the very object of all their love & devotion lord Sri Krsna motionless within the horrible monstrous coils of this great black serpent Kaliya. They were shocked confused & devastated. Yashoda mayi she just became delirious & ran to jump right in the water to end her life, but older gopis they somehow held her back although they felt the same way. The only way they could maintain life in this situation is they all chanted the glories of the lord & his holy name, Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare Hare Ram Hare Ram Ram Ram Hare Hare. They were all standing like corpses looking at Krsna. Nanda maharaj & all the gopas they decided they could not live; they were all just about to jump in the poisonous water of Yamuna but Balaräm stopped them & he told them that there is nothing to be in anxiety about.
Difficulties in devotion help us get purified faster.
Everyone was on the verge of death, literally they were falling unconscious & getting up & rolling in the dust & crying & looking at Krsna & falling unconscious; their hearts were utterly broken, & Balaräm was laughing. Sri Balaräm Ji ki jai. He said Krsna is my younger brother, he is not afraid of this insignificant tiny little water snake. What can this snake do to my brother; nothing more than a slight wind can do to a mountain. What a little darkness do to the sun or a handful of dry weeds to put out a forest fire, but the residence of Vrindavan could not hear him; they were all at the point when they were on the verge of death. Srila Prabhupada asks us, why? Why would Krsna put his beloved devotees who have surrendered all of their lives, in such a miserable condition? And he gives the answer; only to intensify their pure unmotivated love to the most ecstatic degree. When Krsna puts his devotee into a suffering condition; it is to purify our hearts, it is to put us in the condition where we understand that there is no one & nothing else can save us than Krsna & we turn to him whole heartedly with o other shelter. And for the pure devotees like the Vrajavasis there is no purification required, but their total absorption in the remembrance of Krsna was intensified unlimitedly.
Upon seeing that, his devotees were just on the verge of death Krsna felt very compassionate; he expanded his body & slipped out of the coils of Kaliya. He remained in that condition for two full hours. Now Kaliya was ever angrier. Kaliya was breathing horrible fire out of all of his mouths, there were sparks flying out of his red eyes, he raised all of his hoods & stared at Krsna with such cruel envy that no one can imagine. He attacked Krsna, but Krsna just looked at the Vrajavasis & smiled just to reassure them that, there is no danger. As Kaliya with his thousands hoods was attacking Krsna, Krsna was going in circles to doge all of his attacks. Inconceivable potency of the lord, he kept going in circle & circle & Kaliya all his thousand heads were chasing him in circle until Kaliya became so dizzy that he was defeated of all of his strength. Then Krsna pushed down one of Kaliya’s hood & jumped to the top of it. Srila Prabhupada explains in this regard that, eventually everyone has to bow their head to Krsna; devotees they perform their dandavat obeiscences, they place their head at the dust of the feet of Krsna & his servants willing out of humility & devotion. But those who are like Kaliya, who refuse to bow their heads in the spirit of surrender to the supreme personality of godhead; in the form of time Krsna ultimately pushes their heads to the ground to bow to the lotus feet of Krsna in the form of death. Krsna jumped upon the raised hood of Kaliya & began to dance, as Krsna was dancing the demigods were struck with wonder; the demigods began to play the kettle drums, Mridangas, tabläs & all sorts of instruments, they were playing flutes & Veenas & they were singing beautiful songs to accompany Krsna dancing & Krsna danced & danced with such exquisite artistry; Srila Prabhupada explains it was a dramatic performance. Krsna’s legs moving his whole body was so graceful that the demigods could not even keep up with the instrumentation to accompany Krsna’s beautiful dancing. He simply captivated all the fourteen worlds with the beautiful dance. It was here at Kaliya Ghat where we are sitting today that Krsna performed his eternally performing the Lila of dancing on the hoods of Kaliya. And Srila Prabhupada explained that the transcendental sound vibration is non-different than the actual form of the past time itself; we can all witness the dancing of Krsna on Kaliya’s hoods by simply hearing the transcendental sound of Sukadev Goswämé’s words. Krsna danced & danced & danced until Kaliya’s hood collapsed, it was broken to pieces, it fell to the side & then Krsna jumped to the next hood & he danced & to the next hood & to the next & to the next, Krsna danced on all thousand hoods of Kaliya. As the vrajaväsés were all watching in great amazement singing, even the Gandharvas, the Apsaräs they were all dancing along with Krsna. Kaliya was on the verge of death, Kaliya was so beaten down by the lotus feet of the supreme personality of godhead. The Vraja Gopis they are thinking that, Krsna’s feet are so soft, so tender, so gentle that when the Krsna was in the pasture grounds of Vrindavan sometimes these bare feet are stepping upon little stones or pebbles or maybe even a thorn may touch that lotus feet; they were literally cried & their hearts would break thinking that Krsna feet might be injured in this way. When they would place Krsna lotus feet even on the softest part of their bodies; they were afraid that, they might hurt his feet because they were so soft. His feet are tenderer than the petal of lotus flowers to his devotees but to Kaliya those same lotus feet were like thunderbolts crashing upon his head destroying his integrity. Deadly black, red poison started pouring out of Kaliya’s mouths, after all of his poison was vomited, blood started pouring from his mouth & then Kaliya understood that he was finished.
Better late than never
He began to remember the instructions that his wives would regularly give him. His wives the Naga patnés were great devotees, they were always telling him that, you should become a devotee. Krsna is the supreme personality of godhead, he is all attractive, we are wives we are chaste & faithful, but what kind of husband are you? You are supposed to lead us on the path of dharma; you should surrender to Krsna, all your desires will be fulfilled when you surrender to Krsna. But Kaliya with his demoniac male ego he would just disregard the words of his wives as just sentimental fools. But in this condition when he was on the verge of death, he remembered the instructions of his wives & he took shelter of the lotus feet of Krsna.
Killing the Kaliya within by chanting the holy names
This is very interesting to understand & very instructive as well; Krsna is non-different than his name, Krsna is non-different than the rendering of devotional service, his beautiful form of the deity, the past times of the lord, the vaishnavas. Krsna manifests himself in these forms in this world. When we take to chanting of hare Krsna maha mantra, Srila Prabhupada explains Krsna is personally dancing on our tongues. Tongue is something like a snake, is it not? In fact Bhaktivinod Thakur explain that, of all the senses the tongue is the most difficult to control, very stubborn, very obstinate it wants to speak on non sense, it wants to eat all kinds of foods; if one can control the tongue one can control all the other senses easily. And how do we control the tongue; by only taking Krsna Prasad & only speaking those things favourable to Krsna consciousness & chanting the holy name, Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare Hare Ram Hare Ram Ram Ram Hare Hare. As Krsna is dancing on your tongue begin to become purified & all the contaminations of the heart begin to come out like poison. Some of us have this experience, just by chanting hare Krsna it seems like our material desires are worst than ever. It’s not that they are worse than ever, they are always there in your heart; they are coming out like poison. When the poison starts vomiting out it doesn’t look very nice; we have to just keep vomiting & vomiting & vomiting & go on chanting the holy names , Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare Hare Ram Hare Ram Ram Ram Hare Hare. Rup Goswämé says, first we have little faith then we associate with sadhus, then we begin to practise bhajan kriyä, the process of devotional service & then anartha-nivåtti, all of the poison the unwanted things are removed from our hearts. Only then can we really take shelter of the lotus feet of the supreme personality of godhead & that is what Kaliya did.
Kaliya received mercy in the form of punishment
The Naga patnés, the wives of Kaliya when they saw Krsna smashing the hoods of Kaliya by dancing upon then they were in ecstasy, in their heart they were thinking, let this atheistic demon die; then we will become widows, then we can worship the lotus feet of Shamasundar to our heart’s content without any other distraction. But then they saw that, when Kaliya was the verge of death he was actually taking shelter of Krsna he had become humble, he was repentful, he was remorseful. They saw that the Kaliya had become a Vaishnava, let us go & protect him; putting their children before them all the Naga patnés came around Krsna with folded palms to offer prayers. The Naga patnés they prayed that, dear lord Krsna you are the supreme personality of godhead & your mercy is causeless, your punishment is simply your causeless mercy upon our husband who is a serpent & naturally inclined to be envious & cruel. But our husband Kaliya, he has attained the supreme good fortune of having your lotus feet upon his heads, the dust of your feet are so sacred that even Lakshmi Devi, the goddess of fortune & even the greatest of demigods they perform years of tapasya & austerities to attain even one particle of dust from your lotus feet & that same dust which satisfies all desires is & the head of our husband. One who attains the dust of your lotus feet lord Krsna, no longer desire any of the wealth or opulences of this world, had no concern even for the riches of the heavenly planets, has no desire for liberation, mystic siddhis or anything else except your loving devotional service, today you have blessed our husband with the dust of your lotus feet; we cannot understand, what inconceivable pious activities he must have performed in his previous life. But now look at him, he is surrendering to you, he is humble please forgive him; give us our husband back. Krsna was so pleases with the loving prayers of the Naga patnés that he smiled upon them; he told them that your prayers are like a monsoon rain which has extinguished the fire of my anger toward Kaliya. Then Krsna jumped off from the hoods of Kaliya.
What matters, is the sincerity in prayers
Kaliya was lying on the ground unconscious, gradually by the grace of Krsna he regained his consciousness & with great humility & surrender he offered prayers to the lotus feet of Shamasundar. Kaliya knew nothing about offering prayers but he heard his wives praying so he imitated them, but it was done with great sincerity from his heart. He expressed that, I am from the species of serpents, it is our nature to be very envious & very cruel, and it’s very very difficult for anyone to overcome the habitual nature that they have. I am envious, I am cruel, I have offended you, I have offended your devotees, please forgive me I surrender to you. Krsna gave forgiveness to Kaliya & told him that, you should leave this place, you should go back to your home the Ramaëaka Lake in the ocean, you have nothing to fear from Garuda anymore because when he sees my lotus footprints on your head; he will be very kind & merciful to you.
Kaliya returns Kaustubha maëi back to Krsna
It’s very interesting that, Kaliya & Garuda were worst enemies, you know that Kaliya was hiding in this place specifically from Garuda however our beloved acharyas have described to us that after Kaliya became purified & surrendered to the lotus feet of Sri Krsna, Krsna gave him the position of sometime being his carrier the same role as Garuda he has achieved. And it is described in some Puranas that, sometimes when Krsna travels, he travels on the hoods of Kaliya. Kaliya then began to worship Krsna, he offered beautiful jewels, one of the beautiful jewels he took from the inner most part of his treasury; it was the Kaustubha maëi. When Krsna first jumped into the Yamuna Lake his Kaustubha maëi fell off & went to the bottom, then Kaliya found it the most precious of all his jewels he put it in his treasury thinking it is mine. But now he came forward & presented Kaustubha maëi back to Krsna & surrendered. This is actually the meaning of Surrender.
One time a devotee approached our beloved Srila Prabhupada & said “Srila Prabhupada, I want to renounce everything” Srila Prabhupada replied, you have nothing to renounce, everything belongs to Krsna, the only thingy have to renounce is your misconceptions that, you have something to renounce. Whatever we offer to Krsna is like taken water from Ganga & offering back to Ganga. Krsna accepts our devotion, patraà puñpaà phalaà toyam; even if we offer a leaf, a fruit, a flower or some water to Krsna he will accept it; if it is done with devotion. Real peace & happiness can only come when we have full understanding that, everything is the property of Krsna & whatever we have when we offer it for the pleasure of Krsna that is the perfection of our life & that is what Kaliya did. He surrendered his life, offered Krsna garlands, ornaments he offered him everything he had. And then with Krsna’s blessings he departed for the ocean.
Understanding & dealing with anarthas
When Krsna came out of the Yamuna, he was decorated by all the offerings of Kaliya. Vrajavasis were like as if they had come back from the dead seeing Krsna safe & alive. Lord Balaräm embraced him laughing; the Gopas began to embrace him. Nanda maharaj thinking that the supreme personality of godhead has saved my child from this great disaster began to give charity of many decorated cows to the Brahmans. Yashoda mayi, she took the child Gopal on her lap, embraced him & excessively wept tears of love. According to Srila Bhaktivinod Thakur all of the demons who appeared in Sri Vrindavan Dhaam they all represent particular anarthas that we must overcome. He explains that, Kaliya represents the anartha of envy, deceit & cruelty; this anartha attacks us both from within & without. We must understand very carefully, what this anartha is & how it is working. From without there are person who will try to poison our faith, faith is so precious. Like the tree it may take many many births to grow a tree to a state where the fruits begin to blossom but to cut down a tree could be done in the matter of seconds. To hear offences to the vaishnavas, to speak offences to Krsna or his devotees; Caitanya Mahaprabhu explained, it is like mad elephant offence. The devotional creeper that has taken many many lives to begin to develop can be trample to the ground in the matter of seconds; we must be very very careful. There are religious philosophies; there are people who may come before us like Kaliya to try to poison our minds, to try to destroy our faith in Krsna, the spiritual master & the vaishnavas. Then it is explained by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur that, devotees are often time very innocent & unsuspecting, just like those cowherd boys. They just accepted the water as pure & drank from it wholeheartedly not knowing what was in it. Similarly we should not hear from persons who are envious to principles of pure devotional service. Sanatan Goswämé explains that if a non-devotee who is a Mäyävädi speaks Hari katha; it is like milk touched by the lips of a serpent. It tastes like milk but the effect is like poison so we must be very careful. Sometimes even our near & dear ones try to drag us away from the path of devotional service by poisoning our mind. And within our own heart there is envy, there is the propensity of to be deceitful; we must pray to seek Kaliya Daman, Krsna the killer of Kaliya to kill this Kaliya like propensity within our hearts.
Kaliya’s past life
According to Garga saàhitä, there was a sage of the name Vedaçirä & he has an ashram & another great named Açvaçira came to meditate in that ashram but he was not allowed. So Açvaçira cursed Vedaçirä, that I have come to meditate in your ashram & you are so angry at, you are hissing like a snake; I curse you become a snake. Vedaçirä was very upset, began to beg forgiveness & cried please forgive me, forgive me. But then lord Vishnu appeared & told him, you will become a snake but I will personally dance on your hoods & give you deliverance. After Kaliya was delivered & purified by the lotus feet of Sri Gopal, the residence of Vrindavan they so happy to be Krsna, they didn’t want to leave him. so they decided, let’s all take rest right here on the bank of Yamuna .
Fire demon hits Vrindavan
When Krsna would go home to Yashoda & Nanda maharaj all the other Gopas & gopis were just be all night awake longing for the sun to rise when they would see Shamasundar again. But in this particular night Krsna fulfilled all their desire & they all went to sleep on the bank of Yamuna with fixed love & devotion gazing upon the beautiful form of lord Krsna. In this world any disaster can take place at any moment, padaà padaà yad vipadäà na teñäm, there is danger at every step. As they were sleeping peacefully a blazing fire consumed all directions, they woke up & they were surrounded by fire. The flames were towering to the sky. The Gopas, Gopis the cows with tears of love in their eyes they all turned to Krsna, please please save us; we have nothing but you. Whenever devotee takes wholehearted shelter of the supreme personality of godhead, Krsna will surely protect them.
na me bhaktaù praëaçyati
Krsna tells us in Gita that, my devotee will never perish. How Krsna protects his devotees is according to his own inconceivable sweet will. Krsna effortlessly inhaled; simply by breathing inward the entire enormous forest fire was consumed by his small mouth. Sri Krsna bhagavän ki jai. Bhaktivinod Thakur describes that this burning forest fire represents inter communal discord amongst vaishnavas. Some of our acharyas explained that, his burning fire was a actually a demon sent by Kamsa to kill Krsna & the Vrajavasis. Other commentators tell us that this forest fire may have been one of the associates of Kaliya who came to kill Krsna in the residence of Vrindavan out of revenge.
Serving the mission with unity
This is one of greatest anarthas on the path of devotional service, when there is gossip, politics, useless futile rumours which creates discord, disharmony, and agitation amongst the vaishnavas. Srila Prabhupada explained, like a bunch sticks when they are tied together the strength of those sticks is their unity; no matter how hard you try you cannot break those sticks as long as they are tied together. And what is that ties? Srila Prabhupada explains the string of love & trust, without that string of love & trust each twig can individually can easily be broken to pieces; we desperately need each other. United we stand divided we fall. Maya is all powerful, we are at war with her; any war the soldiers understand that, they desperately need each other to overcome the enemy. There are many differences, differences in economic categories some are rich & some are poor. There are various castes, various nationalities, different sexes so many ways that we can differences from each other & fight over those differences however we have one thing in common, that we are all dedicated to the loving service of guru & Gauranga & that one unifying principle should stand above of all others. Srila Prabhupada was greatly disturbed when he saw politics, argumentation & mundane disharmony between the devotees; in fact it caused great pain to his heart. He reminded us often of when he met his own guru maharaj, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur at Sri Radha kund. They were walking along the bank & Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur told him that there were great troubles in Gaudiya math. They had just acquired this Baghbazar Gaudiya math & some of the leaders were competing un-necessarily over who would use which room. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur used the words; there is fire in the Gaudiya math, what is hat fire? Fighting, arguing, and disharmony it is like fire. Chanakya Pandit said, there are several things that most be dealt with immediately or they will destroy you; one is disease & other is fire. If your house is on fire, you can’t take it lightly because if fire is unattended it will not get smaller; it will consume more & more & more until it is like a blazing forest fire. So we must cut this propensity at its very root, as soon as we see the flames of disharmony, mundane interests coming between us, false egos, profit adoration & distinction these inclinations can create havoc within a spiritual society. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur explained that prestige of this world should be seen as abomable, as the stool of a boar, simply abomable. But we are so attached to drinking the succulent juices of this boar stool that due to that attachment we can create havoc to the whole mission of Gauranga Mahaprabhu & guru maharaj.
Humility – the only solution
tåëäd api su-nécena
taror iva sahiñëunä
kértanéyaù sadä hariù
This in fact is the only remedy by which we can put out this fire; to be the servant of the servant of the servant. To strive to be more humble than the straw on the street, more tolerant than a tree, to be very eager to offer all respect to others & expect no respect for ourselves. In this state of mind we can constantly chant the holy names, Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare Hare Ram Hare Ram Ram Ram Hare Hare. So let us not allow this blazing fire to destroy the mission of guru & Gauranga, let us arm ourselves with the quality of forgiveness humility & a true desire to serve. Generally devotees fight over such Pedy insignificant things; we have seen sometime there is major schisms, battle fighting even horrible aparädhas thrown at each others simply on the bases of use of particular type of terminology. Srila Prabhupada gave the example of sons, the father is being massaged & one son on each side & each son is sticking, poking, scratching, and biting the father on the other son side so that he will become more recognised but ultimately it is only the father that suffers. The whole humanity is burning in the fire of ignorance & somehow or other by the inconceivable causeless mercy of the lord we have been given the power to deliver them. If we act united we could heal the sufferings of this world. Srila Prabhupada explained that, if his devotees would just unite in complete faith in his instructions we can make the whole world Krsna conscious in eighteen days; that is the power of holy name, the power of the mercy of guru & Gauranga. So we must give all hatred, all envy & all mundane competition amongst us for the higher principle of giving pleasure to Sri Sri Radhashamasundar & our spiritual master.
Cupid struck by his own arrow
On a way here as we are walking across, parikramä märga we passed a place called 2.09.37 this is a very very important place. When Krsna was playing with Vraja Gopis Madan or Cupid decided he wanted to come to conquer Krsna with his prowess. Now we all know the power of cupid in this world, practically the entire universe is dancing like puppet on the strings of cupid’s influence. The arrows although they are like flowers of cupids bow when they pierce our heart we become mad, we become infatuated. So cupid aimed his bow & arrow at lord Krsna who is Shamasundar, beautiful with his complexion like the Tamal tree, lotus like eyes, his hairs like clusters of crows feathers casketing down his beautiful shoulders, his body decorated with a dhoti which shone yellow like lightening. He was wearing a garland of wild forest flowers, the Kaustubha maëi was on his chest, his limbs beaming like the bimba fruit playing the fifth note of his flute. As cupid aimed & concentrated on his target upon the seeing the beauty of lord Gopinath his heart melted he was paralysed; he couldn’t shoot his arrows & he fell to the ground unconscious. Thus the lord assumed the name Madan Mohan. Cupid is enchanting & intoxicating the entire the universe but Cupid is bewildered by the beauty of Krsna; he is all attractive. There is only one cure for the infatuation of the disease of material desires, paraà dåñövä nivartate there is no other way except experiencing higher taste.
täni sarväëi saàyamya
yukta äséta mat-paraù
Krsna says when we restrain our senses from material objects & fix our consciousness on Krsna then we become fixed in purification. So this should be the goal of our life. Of all the scriptures & all the injunctions & instructions & philosophies they are all meant to serve two purposes, to always remember Krsna & to never forget Krsna. This is the ultimate goal of life & the means of achieving that goal.
Feats by Prabodhänanda Saraswati & Srila Sanatan Goswämé
Just behind us is the samädhi Mandir of Prabodhänanda Saraswati one of the very great acharya of the Gaudiya Vaishnava sampraday. Prabodhänanda Saraswati Thakur was the spiritual master & the uncle of Gopal Bhatt Goswämé, the lord lived them when he was in south Indian tour in Çrérangam. He came & spent his life here in Vrindavan & wrote beautiful literatures that are worshiped by all of our acharyas, especially literatures glorifying the supremely splendid qualities of Sri Vrindavan Dhaam & pure devotional service. After passing by Prabodhänanda Saraswati Thakur’s samädhi we will come to Madan Mohan temple. This is the first temple built here in Vrindavan; it was built by Srila Sanatan Goswämé. When he depart from Vrindavan most of us will be going to Karoli & then to Jaipur. The original deity of Madan Mohan is now in Karoli; however the pratibhü murti is non different living in Vrindavan. We will speak at great length about Sanatan Goswämé & Sri Madan Mohan in the temple of Karoli on November 20th. But in brief Madan Mohan was originally installed by Vajranäbha great grandson of Krsna, over the centuries, millennium it was lost. Sri Advaita acharya was residing in Vrindavan in a place that we will be passing by in a few minutes, it is called Advaita väöa. There he discovered the deity of Madan Gopal, worshiped the deity with great love & devotion. Before returning to Bengal, Advaita acharya gave the deity of Madan Gopal to one of his disciples in Mathura named Purushottam Chobey; who worshiped Madan Gopal with great spontaneous love. He gave the deity to Srila Sanatan Goswämé. Sanatan Goswämé was living here at Dwadashaditya hill, the mountain called Dwadashaditya hill is named such because after Krsna was in the water for so many hours with Kaliya, he stood on top of that small hill; the twelve sons of Aditya appeared as twelve sons just to warm Krsna’s body as an act of loving service. At that time Krsna perspired, the perspiration came down below the hill to form the Praskandana kund. On top of Dwadashaditya hill Sanatan Goswämé was residing, he had nothing, he was the chief minister under Nawab Hussain Shah in Rämakeli living in an glorious ornamented palace; he was a multi millionaire; he gave everything up to serve the mission of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Here in Vrindavan he would sleep under a different tree every night, he would beg mädhukaré & get some simple wheat flour & he would add some Yamuna water & make into balls & put it into fire that’s what he would eat. That’s all he had to offer to Madan Gopal, who was then given the name Madan Mohan. Worshiping the lord under a tree, in poverty by material calculations; but he was offering Madan Gopal the supreme wealth of pure devotional service. What a holy place that is!
Krishnadas Kapoor built Radha Madan Mohan temple
One day a boatman named, Krishnadas Kapoor he had a big big barge with salt & other wares he was taking it to Agra to sell & just near the Praskandana kund his boat got stuck, began to sink. Madan Gopal took the form of cowherd boy & told Mr. Kapoor that there is a great sadhu up there on hill & told, you should talk to him. So he came up. Sanatan Goswämé taught him the science of pure devotional service & Mr. Kapoor surrendered at the lotus feet of Sanatan Goswämé & Sri Madan Mohan. He happened to have some salt which is just what Madan Mohan wanted for his unsalted chapattis. Such a simple offering yet he had attained the ultimate perfection of life by making that offering; his heart was transformed. He sold all of his goods, came back to Vrindavan & built the first temple Sri Sri Radha Madan Mohan that stands today. In fact Madan Mohan temple is the very symbol of Vrindavan for many of us, Madan Mohan is the Sambandha murti of t Gaudiya vaishnava sampraday. Through the teachings of Sanatan Goswämé & the worship of Madan Mohan, we establish our relationship with Krsna who attracts our mind of miserable condition of wanting to enjoy our senses. So when we go to Sri Sri Madan Mohan Mandir we should fall in the dust of that place & beg for the mercy of Sri Sanatan Goswämé & Madan Mohan: please attract my heart to your loving service for all of eternity.
Hearing from realized souls
After Madan Mohan Mandir we will be having hari naam sankirtan to Radhashamasundar temple & then Sri Sri RadhaDamoder temple. At RadhaDamoder temple we will be requesting our illustrious guest Mälaté Devi, Chandrasekhar Maharaj, Bhéma Prabhu, Devamrita, Jananivas Prabhu to speak some wonderful realizations about the significance of that holy place for us, at this time let us take our bath in Kaliya Ghat. Krsna explained after subduing Kaliya that, anyone who take bath in this lake will without doubt achieve pure devotional service to his lotus feet. So there is no water here that we can see with our mortal eyes, however the dust that you are sitting on is non-different from that water, so please whole heartedly take bath in Kaliya Ghat & we will continue our parikramä of Sri Vrindavan Dhaam.
Srila Prabhupada ki jai
Sri Gauranga Mahaprabhu ki jai
Jai Jai Sri Radhe Sham.