Today is Varāhadeva’s appearance day. We are here in Vṛndāvana-dhāma, at the lotus feet of Vṛndā-devī. We are very fortunate to be here. But I am a useless and bogus person. Anything I say, I think this is not correct. I am speaking with hope that the guru-varga will correct me. May the Vaiṣṇavas take the essence, and throw out my rubbish and garbage. If I don’t speak anything, I cannot purify myself. If my faults and guilt don’t come out, then the Vaiṣṇavas will not purify my anarthas. If I hide anything, it is a problem. Therefore I am speaking. May the guru-varga and Vaiṣṇavas purify me.
Today is the appearance day of Varāhadeva. How did He appear? All know this. Śāstra has told many different things. Brahmā created the Earth by the mercy of God. She was present on top of the ocean. Brahmā thought, “This Earth has nothing. There is no grass, animals, trees, creepers, plants, men or women… only earth. What can I do?” He was thinking and praying to God, and he sneezed. Then a very small creature came out of his nose and took on a colossal form, and jumped in the ocean. He is Sveta Varāha. He shook His neck, and many hairs fell. When these hairs touched the earth, the hairs sprouted and grew into kuśa grass.
This grass is very strong and will never be extinguished. If it is in water for thousands of years, it will not be destroyed… nor in fire or in the desert. Why? This hair was from the neck of God. This is pure. When this touched Pṛthivī Devī, she got the power for creation. Then everything began to grow, like sugarcane, many grains for the living entities to eat, and many medicinal herbs. When Varāhadeva touched Pṛthivī Devī, that was enough for her. The Earth Goddess had some desire. When she was touched by Varāhadeva, a slight change came in her, and Narakāsura was born from her womb.
On one side, all grains, medicines, fruits and all nectar came; and on the other side, it was like a big anartha came out and was born as Narakāsura. He is like God’s son and was born from the womb of Earth. But how was his nature? Pṛthivī Devī had a little desire to enjoy, then this created a great problem.
We have come near Hari, Guru and Vaiṣṇavas, but if we have a little impure desire, will the result of that be very sweet? Our desires are very strong. We pray, “I want this. -Ggive this to me.” God gives us many things, but we are not happy with that; we want more. This son of the Earth was very strange. He went to modern Assām and made friendship with other demons there. He was also as if immortal. Now he began to do everything wrong. He also had desires to enjoy.
Anywhere he went, he would steal others’ wives. He stole apsarās from demigods and would steal the wives of gandharvas from Gandharva-loka. He would go to the places of the demons and steal their women as well. He was very strong and had a very strange nature. This went on through satya-yuga and tretā-yuga in the sveta-kalpa.
In dvāpara-yuga, Kṛṣṇa came. Narakāsura’s nature had not changed. He captured thousands of princesses by force and put them in his jail. He gave them time: “If you accept me by then, you can be my mistresses; otherwise, I will kill you all.”
Now, if we pray for good things from Guru and Vaiṣṇavas, they will fulfill our desires. If we pray for bad things, will they give us those as well? They won’t give. But if our desires won’t change, punishment is therefore also necessary.
Pṛthivī Devī suffered so much from the activities of her wicked son. Kṛṣṇa himself came and killed him, and brought all the princesses out of jail.
What do you want? Artha or paramārtha? Paramārtha or anartha? On one side there is anartha, and one side there is paramārtha. Varāhadeva steals the anarthas of all jīvas and gives paramārtha.
He gave kuśa that is very pure. Any place you use kuśa will be pure. By sitting on kuśa mats, the mind and body will be pure. No strange nature will come. Without kuśa, no yajña or tapa will be pure.
When Bali Mahārāja was going to give charity to the Lord, Vāmanadeva said, “First take kuśa and water, and make a promise on that.”
If you use kuśa when Rahu and Ketu cast their effects, contaminating and making everything poisonous by their shadow, you can have some protection. The anarthas and power of demons cannot affect one because of the purifying influence of kuśa. This is very pure. Anywhere kuśa grows in this world will be a yajña bhūmi, a pure place of sacrifice.
Sveta Varāha came and helped all jīvas. The ṛṣis, maharṣis, tapasvīs and sādhus perform their bhajana in places where kuśa grows. Tulasī, Gaṅgā and the holy rivers are helpful for all living entities. But anarthas are very strange and strong. Simply by bathing in Gaṅgā or Yamunā, and staying near sādhus, will anarthas automatically go and good desires come?
We are covered with anarthas from millions of lives– pāpa, pāpa bīja, avidyā, asmita, rāga, dveṣa, abhineśa, svarūpa-bhrama, asat tṛṣṇā, hṛdaya daurbalya and aparādha. We may become cleansed of past sins, but our desire to sin remains.
Therefore, Param Gurudeva, nitya-līlā praviṣṭa oṁ viṣṇupāda aṣṭottara-śata Śrīla Bhakti Prajñāna Keśava Gosvāmī Mahārāja, established Deities of Lord Varāhadeva and Lakṣmī Devī in his temple, Devānanda Gauḍīya-maṭha.
The jīvas have so many anarthas. They have false pride. They are very proud and do not want to think, “I am a sinful offender, full of anarthas.”
If anyone tells this to them, they will become very angry. How can realization come that, “I am full of guilt.”? People like everything to go according to their choice, and for this purpose they pray to God, Guru and Vaiṣṇavas. But all their desires are born of anarthas.
aparādha phale mama, citta bhela vajra-sama,
tuyā nāme nā labhe vikāra
hatāśa haiye hari, tava nāma ucca kari,
baḍa duḥkhe ḍāki bāra bāra
dīna dayāmaya karuṇā-nidāna
bhāva-bindu dei’ rākhaha parāṇa
Śikṣāṣṭaka, Song Six, Gītāvalī
“As a result of my offenses, my heart has become as hard as a thunderbolt. Consequently, it does not melt even slightly when I chant Your holy name. O Lord, now I am feeling very despondent. Being very aggrieved with distress, I am calling Your name again and again. You are very merciful. Kindly give me just a single drop of ecstatic love and save my agitated life.”
When will that day come that I realize, “I have made so many offenses, I have so many anarthas. Because of this, I have no taste for kṛṣṇa-nāma, no taste for dhāma sevā, I have no taste for sādhu-saṅga, and to me śāstra is like an astra, a missile attacking me. I have no desire to read or hear any śāstra.”
Param Gurudeva thought, “How can I help these fallen souls, full of anarthas and false pride?”
People have pride– I am guru-sevaka, a great bhakta– but a devotee of what? I am bhakta of my own desires. I am not the devotee of God. I am not the servant of God, Guru or the Vaiṣṇavas. I am the servant of my desires. I am not a guru-sevaka. I am my mind’s sevaka. How can we understand this? To purify and destroy our anarthas, realization that they are present is first necessary.
Varāhadeva is always ready to help the aspiring devotees full of anarthas. Varāhadeva smells and searches, “Where are the anarthas? How can I remove them?”
Everyone knows the story of Jaya and Vijaya. They were the near and dearest servants of God. They were not only faithful servants, they were loveful servants, full of heartfelt love. They had no desire to go away from God. But the Four Kumāras came there and cursed them.
Jaya and Vijaya only said, “Please wait a moment, we will go ask.”
“Why are you stopping us?” the Kumāras shouted. “Don’t you know who we are? Don’t you know any etiquette? Who gave you this post here? That person also has no intelligence.”
The Kumāras had so much fire. If you scratch the skin of so-called sādhus, so much fire comes out. This fire is balanced in them. How can one go near God? His sevaka only requested them to wait for a moment, with a humble mood, not giving them an order. But, at once, all the fire of the Catuḥsana came out. This is called Brahma śāpa, the fearsome curse of a brāhmaṇa.
This Brahma śāpa now touched them, arrested them, and threw them down. Where? To hell? No. Hell would have been better. They would come out sooner. But no, the Four Kumāras sent them into demonic dynasties, covering them with demonic desires and nature.
Nārada Ṛṣi doesn’t give such sādhu darśana. Nalakuvera and Maṇigrīva insulted him. They did not respect him. They tortured him. But Nārada Ṛṣi sent them to Vṛndāvana, Gokula Mahāvana. He bestowed prema-bhakti on them. That is not easy.
But where did the Catuḥsana send Jaya and Vijaya? They cursed them to become demons. What is this? How is thisthe nature of sādhus?
Jaya and Vijaya were God’s own beloved servants. When Catuḥsana cursed them, God came and said, “Prabhu, the offense of one’s servants is the master’s offense. Their fault is My fault, their guilt is My guilt. Please excuse Me, forgive Me.”
The Lord Himself begged the Four Kumāras for forgiveness. But the proud sages gave great sadness to everyone in the universe by their curse.
Before Jaya and Vijaya fell, God said, “Anywhere you go, I will come and help you. Don’t worry, I am with you. If you are with Me, then I am with you.”
Jaya and Vijaya went down to the material world and became covered with anarthas. They forgot their past relation with God, and became the great demons Hiraṇyakaśipu and Hiraṇyaksa.
Hiraṇyaksa stole the Earth, the Vedas, Vedānta, śāstra and hid them in the lower realms. He tortured the sādhus, brāhmaṇas and demigods. Everyone up to Brahmā suffered because of the effect of this curse.
Brahmā thought, “How can I liberate them from this curse? Then no more disturbance will come to anyone.”
Brahmā thought about this. Then he sneezed, and Kṛṣṇa-Varāha appeared out of his nose, like a small worm. But then He took on a huge form and jumped in the ocean. When He crashed into the ocean, the water rose up, roaring like a lion. Varāhadeva went down into the ocean and brought up the Earth, Vedas and śāstra. Hiraṇyaksa stole this by the effect of the fearsome curse of the Four Kumāras. How dangerous is this? One becomes antagonistic to everything good.
This is the balance of prarabhdha. Therefore, Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī told in his glorification of Śrī Nāma—
vināśam āyāti vinā na bhogaiḥ
apaiti nāma! sphuraṇena tat te
prārabdha-karmeti virauti vedaḥ
“O Nāma! The Vedas loudly declare that even without a devotee undergoing any suffering, his prārabdha-karma, which cannot be eliminated even by resolute meditation on impersonal Brahman, is at once mitigated by Your appearance on the tongue.”
If anyone continuously chants harināma, then prārabdha and aprārabdha will go… otherwise not. If one doesn’t chant any harināma, how will he become pure?
Vaharadeva went and took up the Earth, and then Hiraṇyaksa came to fight with Him. Varāhadeva gave Hiraṇyaksa liberation from that life. His soul left, but he was not completely purified. The curse was very strong.
Out of His immense compassion, the Lord sent the mahā-bhāgavata Prahlāda Mahārāja to help Hiraṇyakaśipu. Then Nṛsiṁhadeva Bhagavān came.
The jīvas have so many anarthas, but they don’t realize this.
āmāra jīvana sadā pāpe rata,
nāhiko puṇyera leśa
parere udvega diyāchi je kato
diyāchi jīvere kleśa (1)
“Throughout my whole life I have been addicted to sin, never performing any pious activities. I have simply been a source of disturbance and suffering for others.”
nija sukha lāgi’ pāpe nāhi ḍori’
para sukhe duḥkhī, sadā mithyā-bhāṣī
para-duḥkha sukha koro (2)
“For my own pleasure I never fear to commit any sin. I am devoid of pity and full of selfishness; I’m sorry at others’ happiness and am an inveterate liar. Indeed, I take delight in others’ miseries.”
Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura sang this for himself.
But if anyone tells this to me, I say, “Hey, fool, rascal!” Then I will be very angry. Why? I think, “I am a Founder-Ācārya. If you are calling me bad, you are a rascal. Why did you give bad announcement about me on Facebook?”
But really I don’t understand I am bad. I have false ego, false pride, and relation with all ordinary things. I can’t cross māyā. I am full of prārabdha, aprārabdha and anarthas.
Devānanda Paṇḍita was also a bhāgavata paṇḍita. Param Gurudeva explained this history. But he made aparādha to Śrīvāsa Paṇḍita, the incarnation of Nārada Ṛṣi. Because of this, he was suffering and was not forgiven. He came once to Puliya and begged Mahāprabhu for forgiveness, saying, “I am suffering so much. I am a brāhmaṇa and bhāgavata paṇḍita. I have all knowledge, but I don’t feel well.”
Mahāprabhu said, “How will you feel well? You made so many offenses.”
“Where?” Devānanda Paṇḍita asked.
“You made offense to Śrīvāsa Paṇḍita. Go to him and ask for forgiveness. If he forgives you, then you may become relieved.”
Param Gurudeva told, “This Devānanda Paṇḍita came to Kuliyā, the place of Varāhadeva. If anyone remembers Varāhadeva and worships Him, or goes for His darśana, first Varāhadeva will show, ‘Where are you? What is your position? How can you cross beyond everything?’”
Param Gurudeva established the Deity of Varāhadeva. He told, “If any devotee or ordinary conditioned souls try to come to Guru and Vaiṣṇavas, the darkness of their anarthas acts as a boundary keeping them away. The living entities come to sādhu, Guru and Vaiṣṇavas, but, truly, they are very far away. Their anarthas don’t let them cross the darkness of māyā. With their own choice, they try to understand Guru and Vaiṣṇavas.
One patient went to a doctor. He thought, “The doctor should be fat, fair and healthy, and he should give me sweet-tasting medicine.” Meeting the doctor, he said, “Don’t give me any bitter medicine.” Did the patient go to test and order the doctor, or to get treatment for his disease from the doctor?
We go to Guru and Vaiṣṇavas, full of our anarthas. But people don’t meet with Guru and Vaiṣṇavas, they don’t understand them. Why? Their anarthas create a boundary.
Our Śrī Guru is a mahā-bhāgavata, the associate of God, an anurāgi Vrajavāsī, but I have no desire for his anurāga. I pray to him for jaḍa-anurāga, bhoga.
Gurudeva then says, “Aho, alas, alas, why have you come to me?”
We all have demonic natures and policy, therefore we have great taste for mundane novels and the cinema, but we have no taste for Rāmāyaṇa, Gītā and Bhāgavatam or our Gosvāmīs’ philosophy. We have no desire to become tad anurāgi janānugami. Therefore we never advance and develop taste for any limb of bhakti. We have no taste for kīrtana!
Varāhadeva gives the jīvas entrance, admission and a chance. He cleans and purifies all. Therefore, the Vaiṣṇavas follow Varāhadeva and Nṛsiṁhadeva.
The Bhāgavatam gives this history of Varāhadeva and Hiraṇyākṣa to teach us how to purify and clean our anarthas. Hiraṇyākṣa and Hiraṇyakaśipu suffered from the curse of the Four kumāras. We have anarthas from millions of lives, insulting the dhāma, holy names, Tulasī, Vaiṣṇavas, Gaṅgā, sādhus, and causing harm to the living entities, and are full of violence and jealousy.
Today is Varāha Dvādaśī. It is a very special day. Also, this year Varāha Dvādaśī has come on punarvasu nakṣatra. Then it is called Maha Dvādaśī. This is very helpful.
On this day, you can either get God’s blessings for good things or mundane things. What will come? If you have desire for mundane things, God will say, “Don’t pray for this from Me.” But I say, “Why don’t You give me?”
People go to Girirāja Govardhana and do daṇḍavat parikramā, praying, “Give me this. If you don’t give me, I will give up my life.”
Then what can God do? I try to steal from God by force, and try to make Guru and Vaiṣṇavas slaves for fulfilling my desires.
Today is punarvasu nakṣatra. On this day, ṛṣis and maharṣis, sādhus and sannyāsīs observe complete silence. In Magha masa, this śukla dvādaśī is the appearance time of Varāhadeva.
In śāstra, the glories of eight maha-dvādaśīs are described. How can we conquer and cross beyond māyā? From early morning on punarvasu-naksastra, those who chant their mantra, like guru-mantra, Gāyatrī, Gaura mantra or mahāmantra, will have their desires fulfilled.
In this time, people go to the bank of Gaṅgā, Yamunā or the saṅgam of Sarasvatī. All bhaktas come to Maghamasa, the saṅgam of Gaṅgā, Yamunā and Sarasvatī. From morning, they start reciting Gītā, Bhāgavata, Rāmāyaṇa, Upaniṣad and perform nāma yajñas. In kali-yuga, harināma-saṅkīrtana is most important.
This Varāha Dvādaśī comes every year, but when this Jaya maha-dvādaśīcomes, this is like His actual appearance day. As Janmāṣṭamī comes every year, but when it falls on Wednesday, Rohiṇī nakṣatra, that is Kṛṣṇa jayantī.
Sanātana Gosvāmī explains this in Hari-bhakti-vilāsa.
Today is Varāha Dvādaśī. Many Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇavas did not follow ekādaśī yesterday. Today they follow maha-dvādaśīvrata, and tomorrow they do abhiṣeka of Nityānanda Prabhu and then take mahā-prasāda of grains.
But this is one problem. We cannot neglect Nityānanda Prabhu. There is no other helper for us in kali-yuga.
If one doesn’t respect Nityānanda Prabhu, His appearance day, and doesn’t have love for Him, then one can never advance.
je chāyāya jagat juḍāya
heno nitāi vine bhāi, rādhā-kṛṣṇa pāite nāi,
dṛḍha kori’ dharo nitāiyer pāya
“Nitāi’s lotus feet are more cooling than the shining of millions of moons. Their shade gives solace to the universe. O brother, without a personality such as Nitāi, it is not possible to attain Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa. So hold on very tightly to His lotus feet.”
nitāiyera caraṇa satya, tāhāra sevaka nitya,
nitāi-pada sadā koro āśa
“The feet of Nitāi are real and His servants are eternal. Always hope and pray for the lotus feet of Nitāi.”
What did Mahāprabhu do? Mahāprabhu took a loincloth of Nityānanda Prabhu, broke it into many pieces and gave it to all the devotees, saying, “Wear this as a kavaca.” Some devotees put it on their heads, some put it around their neck, or tied it on their hands.
Mahāprabhu had deep love and respect for Nityānanda Prabhu. Some complained about Nityānanda Prabhu in Jagannātha Purī to Mahāprabhu, saying, “You are God and a sannyāsī. You are good. But Nityānanda Prabhu wears gold, chews pan, and is an avadhūta who moves everywhere and eats from anyone without any consideration. He is not pure.”
Mahāprabhu became very angry and said, “Mora nityananda yadi sui bari jaya, tathapi mora guru nityananda raya.”
“Nityānanda Prabhu may do anything. If you complain and judge Him, don’t come near me anymore. Anywhere He goes, He purifies everyone and brings them to God’s lotus feet. He is My authority. He gives pure existence to the soul, svarūpa sattā, purifying all jaḍa sattā. If you disrespect that Nityānanda Prabhu, I have no relation with you… don’t come near Me.”
If we don’t follow Nityānanda Trayodaśī, then more problems come.
Yesterday, ekādaśī went.Today, we do arcana and take caraṇāmṛta. If anyone did a full fast yesterday, then today they should only take water and tomorrow, after Nityānanda Prabhu’s abhiṣeka, they can take fruits or anything. If possible, one day you can do nirjala, the next day water, and the third fruit and roots. If this is not possible, then yesterday anyone who followed ekādaśī can break their vrata today after taking caraṇāmṛta, and then tomorrow fast for Nityānanda Prabhu’s appearance.
But in Prabhupāda Sarasvatī Ṭhākura’s time, Param Gurudeva’s time, and Śrīla Gurudeva’s time, devotees would follow vrata for three days.
Offered in remembrance of Śrīla Gurudeva
Śrī Śrīmad Bhaktivedānta Nārāyaṇa Gosvāmī Mahārāja