sa evayam´ maya te ‘dya

yogah proktah puratanah

bhakto ‘si me sakha ceti

rahasyam´ hy etad uttamam

Translation :

That very ancient science of the relationship with the Supreme is today told by Me to you because you are My devotee as well as My friend. Therefore you can understand the transcendental mystery of this science.


Purport by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhakti Vedanta Swami Prabhupada

There are two classes of men, namely the sura and the asura. The Lord selected Arjuna as the recipient of this great science owing to his being a devotee of the Lord, but for the asura it is not possible to understand this great mysterious science. There are a number of editions of this great book of knowledge. But the commentations by the devotees is real, whereas that by the non-devotees is useless. Arjuna accepts Sri Krsna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and any commentary on the Gita following in the footsteps of Arjuna is real devotional service to the cause of this great science. One should try to follow the disciplic succession from Arjuna, and thus be benefitted.

bhakto ‘si me sakha ceti

rahasyam´ hy etad uttamam

That very ancient science of the relationship with the Supreme is today told by Me to you because you are My devotee as well as My friend. Therefore you can understand the transcendental mystery of this science.


Bhagavat Dharma, a great science:

Here Bhagavan Sri Krishna is describing this science of Bhagavat dharma to be a great mystery. Indeed it is a great science. In fact people in this world they are most unfortunate if they consider religion to be something unscientific. In fact there are many varieties of material sciences. Krsna explains in Gita

bhumir apo ‘nalo vayur kham mano buddhi eva ca
ahankara itiyam me bhinna prakrtir astadha

He describes there are eight basic material elements. Five gross elements – earth, water, fire, air and ether and the study of these five gross elements goes by the names of chemistry, biology, physics and so forth. And the three subtle elements mind, intelligence and ego, the material sciences of understanding this level of existence, goes by the name of psychology, psychiatry consider science. These sciences should not be rejected. But they are incomplete according to Sri Krsna as he describes in next verse.


apareyam itas tv anyāḿ

prakṛtiḿ viddhi me parām

jīva-bhūtāḿ mahā-bāho

yayedaḿ dhāryate jagat


Besides these five gross and three subtle material elements, there is another nature which is eternal, which is spiritual, which is source of all life and animation, it is the atma, the soul. To understand the eternal nature of the soul and its eternal relationship with supreme soul paramatma, that is the highest most inclusive and the most important of all sciences. But Krsna is explaining in this verse that this science of the soul is very much different than the material sciences because through material science, through your sense perception and your mental comprehension, you can observe the truth, the relative truths of the five gross and three subtle elements. But to try to approach the supreme spiritual science in this way is doomed to failure because the comprehension of the absolute truth is beyond the capacity of the five gross and three subtle elements of material nature.  Our senses are gross material elements and our mind, intelligence, and ego are subtle material elements and that which is material has no access into what is beyond the realm of material existence. The soul is transcendental and God, the supreme controller is supremely transcendental. Therefore Krsna explains that this science is very ancient, it is the science of the soul’s relationship with God and because you are my devotee Arjuna, you can enter into the great mystery of Bhagavat dharma.  This is the singular qualification, accepting the position of  God’s devotee. There is the ascending process, through our capacity try to reach higher and higher heights of realization but in the school of Bhakti which Krsna stresses, advocates throughout the Gita, this school of Bhakti is altogether different. It is a descending process. Is the process according to our capacity to simply not to attain God but to please God. There is a great difference. One is an expression of love and one is not. To work according to our mental and physical capacity to attain God, is not love. It’s a struggle but to work for your complete capacity with all your intelligence, all your mind, all your physical capabilities to please God, that is love, that is affection and when Krsna who is within the heart of every living being,

 isvarah sarva-bhutanam

 hrd-dese ‘rjuna tisthati

 bhramayan sarva-bhutani

yantrarudhani mayaya
 [Bg. 18.61]

 Who is the witness from within and without for every and our every thought and our every deed. When Krsna sees when we are honest and sincerely with a desire for great affection trying to please Him, trying to serve Him,

 yasya prasadad bhagavat-prasado

yasyaprasadan na gatih kuto ‘pi

How to please Krsna:

How to please Krsna? With our present mind and senses we cannot perceive Him. So, how do we please someone that is invisible to us? Therefore it is said

yasya prasadad bhagavat-prasado

yasyaprasadan na gatih kuto ‘pi

Krsna is so merciful, He is so kind that he is appearing in this world in so many wonderful ways, that we can perceive Him. When he incarnates as the archa murti the beautiful deity in the temple we can see Him. But seeing Him is not enough. We must know what He wants and therefore Krsna explains, archayamaam vijaniyam.

That Krsna appears in this world, to teach us through the true pure hearted sadhus, the Guru. What Guru speaks? He does not speak his own opinion, his own idea, his own philosophy. Like a messenger, like a postman, he simply delivers the message of Krsna. Krsna within our heart, we cannot perceive. He is speaking to us through our ears, through the scriptures through the guru and through the sadhus. It is through Guru, sadhu, shastra that Krsna’s desire is revealing to us. And when we serve that instruction, with submissiveness, Krsna says in Gita,

tad viddhi pranipatena

pariprasnena sevaya

upadeksyanti te jnanam

jnaninas tattva-darsinah

If you want to know the truth, approach guru. He is my representative, He is worshipping me with Love, How to approach? pariprasnena sevaya. You must enquire submissively with open ears, open mind, open heart and serve that instruction. That is bhakti and when we please Krsna in this way, He descends into our life. The invisible becomes visible. The unknowable becomes knowable, by His own inconceivable potency. Some people lodge the argument that if the senses are limited, in order for them, if the senses and mind are limited, in order for them to perceive God who is unlimted, they must become unlimited, which means in other words, that you become God. But according to the shastra, this is not the correct understanding. The senses and the mind are limited. That is true but for the unlimited to be unlimited, the unlimited could do anything, that’s what it means to be unlimited, there is nothing that you cannot do. He could reveal himself to the women.

bhakto ‘si me sakhā ceti,

rahasyaḿ hy etad uttamam


Therefore Krsna says only by becoming My humble submissive devotee, My bhakta, can one understand as I am.


bhaktya tv ananyaya sakya

aham evam-vidho ’rjuna

jnatum drastum ca tattvena

pravestum ca parantapa


Only Krsna says by undivided devotion I am understood as I am. So this simple affection is factually more important than all of the very very complex rules regulations, and rituals of the Vedas. After all you know this story in Vrndavan of the Brahmins, they were very well versed in the shastras and they were masters in performing ritualistic ceremonies and their wives they had no philosophy really, as far as being able to show their prowess in argumentation, and sloka quoting and they didn’t know any rituals but they had one qualification. They had affection for Krsna. So Krsna rejected the Brahmins and revealed himself to them. That affection is the conclusion of all slokas. It is the conclusion of all Veda. So therefore we must know that all the slokas of the Vedas, all the rituals and all of the yagnas are all meant simply to regulate our life for the purpose of awakening that natural affection for God because only by that affection that God reveal Himself.


Lord reciprocation to His devotees Love:

There is nice story of how the Lord reciprocates with His devotees love and how the Lord is more concerned with that Love than all sorts of formal etiquette. The spiritual master of Lord Sri Krsna Caitanya Mahaprabhu was the foremost great disciple of Sri Madhavendra puri. His name was Isvara Puri, Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu accepted initiation from him and Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu worshipped him with such devotion and love, although Mahaprabhu is the avatar of Sri Krsna, he wanted to show the nature of love of His devotee. And it is described when Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu went to the birth place of Isvara Puri after his Gurudev has already left this world, he began weeping tears of love and he began not only did he put his head in that dirt of that birth place but he ate the dirt and he took that little part of that dust and every day he would eat that crying tears of love remembering the love of his Guru maharaj. In this way he showed us how a disciple should respect, adore and love the spiritual master with heart full of gratitude for revealing Krsna.

So Isvara Puri had two personal servants. One was named Govinda, and the other was named Kasishwara Pandit. When Isvara Puri was in his last days, just before disappearing from this world, his beloved disciples, Govinda and Kasishwara, he told them that very soon, I will depart from this earthly lila of mine, At that time you should become the personal servants of my disciple but who is also my worship able lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. He told Kashishwara pandit, that you should first go to all the holy places throughout the Bharath varsha and then you should take shelter of the service of Lord Gauraga and Govinda he said he should immediately go and take up his personal service. So when Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu was traveling though South India, when he returned Govinda approached him and he said, he paid his humble obeisances to Lord Caitanya, he said Isvari Puri, our Guru Maharaj he had instructed me to become your personal servant and dedicate my life in serving to your every need and want. And Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu upon hearing these words his heart was overflowing with love, he turned to Sarvabouma bhattacharya, who was the greatest scholar and the greatest Brahmin in all of India who had just accepted pure devotional service at the feet of the lord.

And Sarvabouma Bhattacharya, he was confused. He turned to Caitanya Mahaprabhu and he said how is this possible? This man Govinda, he is from the caste of sudras, he was born in the Sudra family and Isvara Puri was a great Brahmin, he was a spiritual master, he is your spiritual master.  Why did he accept the Sudra for a servant? Do you not know, it is against the principles of the Vedas for a Brahmin Guru to accept the disciple in the Sudra class and it is also against the principles of a Brahmin Guru to accept the service from a Sudra? And Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, he replied very mused by Sarvaboumya bhattacharya remark. That try to understand, Krsna is manifesting His will in this world through the spiritual master. And Krsna is not bound by these rules and regulations. He is only bound by affection.  Mother Yashoda who is the wife of a Vaishya but she was able to bind Krsna with ropes. Krsna only considers the affection. He does not consider the physical formalities of one’s position in the society. If he did, why was it that when Lord Sri Krsna visited Hastinapur, who did he take his lunch with? Not the Brahmin, not the Kshatriyas, with Vidura. He would every day take his Prasad at the house of Vidura. Food cooked by him. Although he was classified by all to be a Sudra by birth. Why? What was Vidura’s qualification? Bhakti, love, affection. Therefore because Govinda had such love and devotion, to my Guru Maharaj Isvara Puri when he was initiated, my Guru Maharaj by his causeless mercy made him a pure vaisnava. He made him better than all Brahmins. This is love. This is Guru Kripa. Guru Kripa is the way to approach the God not through any Janama, by any birth by performance of any ritual. You can never approach God by this process. This is only by the mercy of Guru and Krsna. The rituals are important but what is the purpose of rituals? Simply to please Krsna and to get the mercy of Guru and Krsna.  Outside of that motivation, all other rituals are simply karma kanda. They are materialistic. At the most they are piety. They cannot bring realization of God. So Govinda he began to serve the Lord. He was the constant companion.


Nature of Devotees Love:

There is one beautiful incident which also shows the nature of devotees love. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu he was dancing in Jagan mohan area in front of Lord Jagannath in puri dham. And he was dancing and dancing and all various ecstatic symptoms were manifesting in his body. Tears were flowing from his eyes, blood was coming from his pores, limbs were becoming disjointed, his hairs were standing on end, foam was coming out of his mouth, any body who tries to imitate these symptoms is a great cheater. This is mahabhav. These symptoms of ecstasy can only be manifested by God himself. No one else. So as he was manifesting these supreme symptoms of transcendental love, the devotees they were chanting and chanting and dancing and dancing and hours were going by and the Lord Nityananda was trying. He was also very happy. He also saw the devotees how long they could go on. Mahaprabhu can go on eternally but the rest of us My dear lord, please. Caitanya Mahaprabhu was in trans and finally when he saw that the devotees were becoming very tired, out of sympathy for them, he ended the kirtan. Then he went to bathe in the ocean and after bathing in the ocean, he went to his personal quarters which is called the Gambira in the home of Sri Kashi Mishra. And it was the regular service of Govinda that after the beautiful kirtan performance of Lord Gaurasundar, he would massage him to give him relief from all of his dancing pastimes. So on this day, Caitanya Mahaprabhu instead of lying inside of his room, he laid across the door of the room and his legs were inside. So Govinda he said my Lord, please I very humbly request you, can you just move slightly because I do not want to step over your transcendental form.  Just move over slightly so I can get into the room to massage your legs and Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu he said, I am too tired, I cannot move. Then Govinda he said, he knew that the Lord, for his pleasure he has to massage him somehow or the other his lotus feet and his legs. My Lord please please just little few inches move I will creep by you. I cannot move. I am too tired. I have been dancing all day. Again Govinda requested my Lord, Please I want to massage your lotus feet. I want to massage your legs. Kindly move slightly. He said I cannot move. And he said why don’t you walk over me? And Govinda said how can I walk over you? That would be a great offense. And then Lord Caitanya said do whatever you like. Whatever your heart tells you to do, do it. And then the Lord fell asleep, transcendental sleep. So upon seeing the lord resting in this way, Govinda very carefully took the upper portion of the Lord’s cloth and placed it over the Lords body and then very carefully he stepped over the body of Lord Caitanya and went into the room and began to massage his feet and his legs very carefully to give pleasure to the lord and about 45 minutes later, Sri Gauranga arose from his sleep and he saw Govinda sitting next to him still massaging his feet. He said what are you doing? Why are you still here? Because you see it was Govinda’s, it was his regulation after Lord Caitanya would bathe in the sea, he would take Prasad. Then he would lay in the room, Govinda would massage his feet and then Govinda would after mahaprabhu fall asleep, he would go and take the remnants of the Lord’s Prasad. He said why have you not taken Prasad? It is been so long. Why have you not eaten? Govinda said how could I? How could I do like this? He said in order to get my Prasad I would have to walk over you. And Lord Caitanya said but you walked over me to come in? Why couldn’t you walk over me to go out? And Govinda remained completely silent but the Lord heard what he was thinking in his mind and he was very pleased. In his mind, he was thinking, my Lord to serve you, to give you pleasure I am willing to commit 100’s of millions of greatest offences. If it pleases you, if I can serve I am willing to go to the hell for the rest of the eternity. But for my own sense gratification, for my own self interest I am scared to death to even commit the slightest glimpse of something representing an offence. This was the love of Govinda. And how much this love please the lord. This was his qualification for being the intimate association of the lord.


Lord’s reciprocation to the Love of His devotees:

And sometime later that other great disciple of Isvara puri, Kasishwara pandit, he came to Jagannath puri after travelling to various holy places and he was given the personal service of being Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s body guard. What is that mean? That means whenever Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu go into the Jagannath puri temple there were always so many hundreds sometimes thousands of people and everyone wanted to touch him and be like that. So Kasishwara pandit he would clear the way to the Lord so no one would disturb him. He would always walk in front of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu. He was very big and strong. Whatever you have use it in Krsna’s service. If you are big and strong, be big and strong for Krsna. If you are skinny and weak, be skinny and weak for Krsna. Krsna doesn’t care.

patraḿ puṣpaḿ phalaḿ toyaḿ, yo me bhaktyā prayacchati

Whatever you have just use it for Me Krsna says. Offer Me with devotion. So Kasishwara pandit, he would clear the way, push everyone out of the way. Mahaprabhu is coming. Haribol! He would do it with great respect but also very appreciably. He would never offend people he is very efficient and also he was always in charge after the kirtans. He was in charge of distributing Prasad, taking care of serving all the vaisnavas. He always has the very very deep love for the personal service of the lord.

But it is described that Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu sent Srila Rupa Gosvami and Srila Sanatana Gosvami to Vrndavan and Srila Rupa Gosvami, this young boy appeared to him. Beautiful cowherd boy and took him to this one hill in Vrndavan called Gomati hill. And there Rupa Gosvami was shown the most wondrous site. That there was this beautiful beautiful cow and everyday it would stand on the top of this hill and all its milk would come out of the udder and go into the ground.  And Rupa Gosvami would go there he would chant the holy names of the lord and each and every day this cow would come and do like this. He looked under the earth where that cow is bringing its milk everyday and there he found the beautiful deity of Govinda Dev.

Jaya Radha Govinda Radha Govinda Radhey!

Rupa Gosvami pranadana he

Jaya Radha Govinda Radha Govinda Radhey!!

So upon finding the beautiful murti of Govinda, he installed the murti exactly in the place where he had found him. And one of the disciples of Srila Raghunath Bhatta Gosvami, who is a great journal under the king, his name was Maharaj Maan Singh. He constructed the beautiful temple for Govinda ji. So Rupa Gosvami explained the wonderful mercy of the Lord in the message he has sent to Caitanya Mahaprabhu in Jagannath puri and Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu was so happy. This Govinda ji was originally installed by Badrinath, the great grandson of Lord Sri Krsna 5000 years ago. One of the most famous murtis of Vrndavan who had been unmanisfested thousands of years, manifested himself to Rupa Gosvami, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu was so happy. He was in transcendental ecstasy that the Lord was showing such mercy to his devotee. He was thinking the best servant should go to assist Rupa Gosvami with serving Radha Govinda Ji. So he told Kashishwara Pandit that you should go to Vrndavan and you should assist Srila Rupa Gosvami in his devotion to Radha Govinda. And Kasishwara pandit was always very very anxious to fulfill any order of the Lord, but in his heart he was feeling great great bereavement. Day and night he was rendering personal service to Lord Gauranga, how will I leave without that service. His heart, his mind was in great turmoil. He wanted to follow the instruction but he could not live in separation from the lord. So very humbly, very submissively he revealed his mind. He said my Lord, of course I want to please you and serve you but it is worse than death even to think about being without you. So Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu who is the paramatma within the lord of every living being could understand the deep deep love of Kashishwara pandit. So what he did is he gave Kasishwara pandit a small murti of himself. He said you take this murti with you wherever you go. You place it on the left side of Radha Govinda ji and when you worship Govinda, you also worship me. This deity is non different than me. When you offer it food, you will see me eat it. When you offer me the devotion and love, you will perceive my presence in this murti. And then Caitanya Mahaprabhu named the murti Gaura Govinda. And Kasishwara pandit took that little beautiful deity and he took it to Vrndavan and he placed it on the left side of Sri Govinda dev and whenever the separation from the lord would become very acute, he would sing, he would dance, he would offer food for the murti of Gaur Govinda and in this way he would become fully satisfied feeling the intimate personal presence of the lord.

So the lord reciprocates always with the love of his devotee and the reciprocation of the lord for his devotees is beyond, the power of the material senses to comprehend. It can only be understood by one who has sacrificed his heart for the pleasure of the lord and of course Krsna is explaining here that this great mystery is very very easy to understand for one who is willing to accept the position of Bhakti and Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu during his divine Lila, he revealed to us, the means of becoming, such a pure devotee. What is that means? To always humble oneself before the Guru and the vaisnavas and in their divine association learn how to receive the supreme benediction for all humanity, the holy name of Krsna.

Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare

Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

When we chant the holy name of the Lord according to the instructions of the great souls and we chant the holy names of the lord with the intimate association of the vaisnavas, then Krsna takes our devotion very seriously.

ceto-darpana-marjanam bhava-maha–davagni-nirvapanam

And through this process Krsna puts personally from within the heart cleanses all unwanted qualities and awakens that pure devotion from within what is the means and the ways of the supreme realization of Bhagavan Sri Krsna.


Our body, our mind and everything is Krsna’s property:

So, let us take very seriously the example of these great souls . Let us not perform rituals for rituals sake. Let us do everything we do whether it is an elaborate rituals or whether it is simply dancing, chanting, cooking some chapattis. Whatever we do let us do for one purpose and for one purpose alone to please Krsna, to please His devotees. However miserable our life may be on a material platform we should never think selfishly. Just like Sanatana Gosvami it is explained at one time he drank some bad water, and he got terrible, terrible disease. He had horrible rashes all over his body which were oozing with puss and blood and they itched so unbearably no human could stand it. So, he decided what is the use of this body, I will commit suicide. During the Ratha yatra while Mahaprabhu is dancing I will throw my body on to the cart and this way I will die and may be in my next birth I might become a good devotee. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu in his heart could understand what he was thinking and he said to Haridas Thakur and Sanatan, He said just see this Haridas, what non-sense this man is? What a selfish person he is? If I want him to suffer this pain, he is so selfish. He wants to destroy the body that I have given him? Your body belongs to me. It does not belong to you. You have no right to do anything unless I sanction. Mahaprabhu classified Sanatana as a selfish thief for wanting to destroy the property of the lord, whatever the condition was. Our body, our mind and everything is Krsna’s property and when we become his devotee he does what fit to purify us. And the devotee should be grateful to endure anything to receive that purification. And by doing that he pleases the lord. He is not concerned with pleasing himself. That is Bhakti.  And that natural condition of unmotivated, uninterrupted service is awakened by following in the footsteps of great souls by chanting the holy names

Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare

Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

Thank you very much!

Written by

Radhanath Swami

H.H Radhanath Swami is one of today’s most beloved and respected spiritual teachers. A Bhakti Yoga practitioner for 40 years, he is a guide, community builder, philanthropist, and acclaimed author.Born and raised in Chicago,at the age of 19 he discovered India's Mystical devotional tradition and now spread his message of compassion and love around the world.

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About Me

Radhanath Swami

H.H Radhanath Swami is one of today’s most beloved and respected spiritual teachers. A Bhakti Yoga practitioner for 40 years, he is a guide, community builder, philanthropist, and acclaimed author.Born and raised in Chicago,at the age of 19 he discovered India's Mystical devotional tradition and now spread his message of compassion and love around the world.