As is Vaiṣṇava custom for any appearance day of the Lord, Śrīla Gurudeva fasted on Gaura-pūrṇimā, along with the rest of the devotees congregated at Devānanda Gauḍīya Maṭha. From morning to evening, the Caitanya-Bhāgavata and Caitanya-caritāmṛta were recited before the assembly, with special emphasis given on the reasons for the Lord’s advent.When the moon began to rise in Navadvīpa, the assembled devotees sang the hymn recounting the birth of Lord Caitanya as Acaryadeva bathed the Deity of Mahāprabhu with milk, yogurt, clarified butter, honey, sugar, water, and fragrant oils. The devotees danced in bliss with their arms raised in unison, roaring, “Nitai-Gaura Haribol!” Some devotees played on trumpets and bugles, others on cymbals and drums, and others waved banners marked with the holy names. After garbing the Deity, Acarya Kesarī joined the kīrtaniyas (singers). Ecstatic symptoms manifested on his body as he danced in unbridled love of God. Mesmerized by the scene, Śrīla Gurudeva prayed for audience of Mahāprabhu and His associates. Suddenly, the material curtain covering the eternal spiritual abode lifted. Mahāprabhu appeared before Gurudeva’s eyes accompanied by Nityānanda Prabhu, Gadādhara Paṇḍa, Advaita Acarya, Śrīvāsa Paṇḍa, Sañjaya, Mukunda, and Vāsu Ghoṣa. Concealed to the ordinary observer, they danced in the courtyard of Devānanda Gauḍīya Maṭha to the sound of mahā-saṅkīrtana.Śrīla Gurudeva’s hairs stood on end, he wept and shivered uncontrollably, and then he fell senseless on the ground. By the mercy of his divine master, Gurudeva was able to observe Mahāprabhu and His associates. Śrī Guru thereby fulfills the heartfelt desire of the sincere aspirant. Seeing Gaura Nārāyaṇa fallen senseless, Acarya Kesarī lifted him on to his lap. Gurudeva slowly returned to consciousness. Once awake, Gurudeva wept, longing to see the Lord again. He said, “Guru Mahārāja, your mercy is endless. By your grace alone I have witnessed Mahāprabhu and Navadvīpa-dhāma. But now, due to my great misfortune, I am no longer able to see the beauty of Gaurāṅga Mahāprabhu.”Acarya Kesarī pacified him, “Be peaceful. Soon you will be able to always perceive Mahāprabhu’s saṅkīrtana.”From that day on Śrīla Gurudeva could not forget the beautiful form of Mahāprabhu; while chanting harināma or engaged in services, the scene of Mahāprabhu’s kīrtana remained fixed in his mind.After Gaura-pūrṇimā, Śrīla Gurudeva accompanied AcaryaKesarī and some close associates to various holy sites in Gauḍa-maṇḍala—the area in Bengal where Mahāprabhu performed His pastimes, which includes the appearance places of many exalted Vaiṣṇavas and associates of Mahāprabhu. They went to Śāntura, the residence of Ādvaita Acarya, and Phuliyā, where Haridāsa Ṭhākura resided. Next they went to Ambikā-kālanā, where Gaurīdāsa Paṇḍita worships the Deities of Gaura-Nityānanda that were created from a neem tree by the Lords’ Themselves when Gaurīdāsa Paṇḍa requested the Lords to always stay with him. Acarya Kesarī and Śrīla Gurudeva then went to Cāṭigrāma, the birth village of Mahāprabhu’s dear associates Puṇḍarīka Vidyānidhi, Caitanya Vallabha, Vāsudeva Datta, and Mukunda Datta. They then went to Ekacakrā-dhāma, the birthplace of Lord Nityānanda Prabhu, and next to Kaṭavā, where Nimāī Paṇḍa accepted sannyāsa from Keśava Bhāratī. Afterwards, they went to Śrīkhaṇḍa, where many eminent associates of Mahāprabhu took birth, such as: Narahari Sarakāra Ṭhākura, Mukunda Ṭhākura, Raghunandana, and Jagadānanda, to name a few. They finished their parikramā at Pānīhāṭī and Ādi Saptagrāma.Acarya Kesarī described the pastimes and glories of each place they went to. When Gurudeva heard the glories of Ādi Saptagrāma, the appearance place of Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī, he asked, “Why did renounced Vaiṣṇavas like Haridāsa Ṭhākura go to the house of Hiraṇya and Govardhana Majumadāra? After all, Mahāprabhu said, ‘Meeting with kings and royalty is like taking poison. Renounced Vaiṣṇavas never meet with such men.’ Despite this, we see that numerous Vaiṣṇavas in the renounced order went to the house of the aristocratic viceroy Govardhana. Why was this?”Acarya Kesarī explained, “Haridāsa Ṭhākura had no desire for wealth or anything material. He was niśkiñcana-akiñcana, completely neutral and free of mundane desires. Haridāsa Ṭhākura had the transcendental desire to meet with Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī, the son of Govardhana Majumadāra. Dāsa Gosvāmī came from the eternal world of Vraja-maṇḍala. In Mahāprabhu’s līlā he is Raghunātha, but in vraja-līlā he is Rati Mañjarī. Without Rati Mañjarī’s mercy, rati, attraction for Kṛṣṇa will not arise in one’s heart. Rati Mañjarī bestows anurāga and the desire for bhajana, bhakti, and a transcendental relation. At present, our rati is for our own senses. Without spiritual strength and attraction we are unable to transcend our material condition and enter the eternal realm.“Once Nityānanda Prabhu sat under a tree on the bank of the Gaṅga in Pānīhāṭī in the company of Śānanda Sena and thousands of bhaktas. Raghunātha came to meet Nityānanda Prabhu there and prostrated himself before the Lord from a distance. Nityānanda Prabhu called him forward, saying, ‘Thief! You have been hiding from Me; today I will give you a punishment. Now and forevermore you must serve all the Vaiṣṇavas.’ Nityānanda Prabhu placed both His feet on the head of Śrī Raghunātha and said, ‘The living beings are only truly helped when they receive vraja-rati. You must distribute this rati to not only the people that visit your home but to everyone. I have been thinking about pulina-bhojana—how Kṛṣṇa picnics with His friends on the bank of the Yamunā. Arrange prasāda at once for everyone here. This will please Me.’“Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī made all necessary arrangements with haste and ease. The love of svarūpa-śakti empowered him. He did not distribute just sweet yogurt, flat rice, and fruits that morning on the riverbank. In that festival, Rati Mañjarī distributed rati, loving attraction for Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa. The medium was flat rice, ghee, fruit, yogurt, and so forth, but in truth he was not giving ordinary substances. On Lord Nityānanda’s order, he gave his pure heartfelt love to the devotees.Mahāprabhu directly manifested in the midst of that festival and Nityānanda Prabhu offered the preparations to Him first. Mahāprabhu gladly accepted that offering, prepared with rati and offered by Nityānanda Prabhu—the original guru of all. Afterwards, His prasāda was distributed to tens of thousands of eager recipients. All became full of bliss, receiving the rati distributed by Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī. Nityānanda Prabhu ordered Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī to never stop this service.”Gurudeva asked Acarya Kesarī, “Rati Mañjarī gave this vraja-rati; did not Prabhupāda Sarasvatī Ṭhākura—the emissary of svarūpa-śakti—also distribute this rati?”“Indeed he did.”“And you are also distributing this rati, Gurudeva?”“Yes,” Acaryadeva said with a smile, “those fortunate souls who have a ready vessel in their hearts all receive this rati.”“If I pray for this,” Gurudeva asked, “will the Guru-varga bestow upon me?”“Yes, why wouldn’t they? If you beg for this with faith and respect, the merciful Guru-varga will certainly give it to you.”Acarya Kesarī indicated the occupation of sādhakas. “We are simple beggars,” he said. “Sādhakas visit the places of the Guru-varga and beg for vraja-rati from the ācāryas. If you seek charity from general people they may give one, five, or ten rupees, but they can’t give vraja-rati. They will engender viṣaya-rati, attainment for sense objects, and will try to make you their servant. Only the Guru-varga bestow pure love.”From that time on, Śrīla Gurudeva committed prayers of the Guru-varga to memory and repeated them daily in supplication:tavaivāsmi tavaivāsmi na jīvāmi tvayā vinā. (Click on the Title to read complete post)
Dāsa Gosvāmī prays, “O Rādhike, please do not be angry with me. You are the epitome of patience and tolerance. In this world, millions of people don’t follow or respect You. Still, You continuously help all living entities, but they do not think of You. You don’t reject them or stop nourishing them for even a second. If You did so, all the material and spiritual creation would be destroyed in an instant. You have unlimited patience and give everything to the living entities. I am full of faults. Please don’t look at them.“Please send Lalitā-devī. May she be kind to me and bring me before You, and then ask You to forgive me and bestow some service on this small Rati. I do not understand what is wrong and what is right. If You say, ‘Get out, never come near Me. You have no brain,’ then what will be my position? I don’t know the process of Your service, but I am very greedy for this.”Absorbed in his eternal form as Rati Mañjarī, Dāsa Gosvāmī prays to Śrīmatī Rādhārānī, “O Rādhike, I made a small mistake and therefore You have kicked me out of Your kuñja. Kṛṣṇa came and spoke to me, questioning me and enticing me to reply. I tried very hard to remain silent, but afterwards I could not constrain myself and I independently gave an answer to Him. Seeing me speaking with Kṛṣṇa outside the kuñja, You became angry. When I reentered the kuñja, You said, ‘Get out! Don’t come near me.’ Lalitā-devī saw me crying in a corner and brought me back to You. O Rādhe, my heart was broken when You sent me away angrily. I cannot express the magnitude of my sorrow and cannot find peace anywhere. I have no one in this world but You; I cannot leave You and go to anyone else. O Rādhe, I had no desire to speak with Kṛṣṇa, but what could I do…”Śrīla Gurudeva gave an example here. Once, Vallabhācārya instructed his dear disciple, “When Thakurji is given rest after the midday offering and artik go inside the temple altar and fan the Lord with eyes closed. If you hear someone saying anything, don’t give any answer or open your eyes.”The disciple followed his Gurudeva’s instruction. A short while after beginning to fan the Lord, the disciple heard someone saying, “Hey! Why are you fanning for so long with closed eyes? Open your eyes and look at Me!”When the disciple didn’t open his eyes or speak anything, the voice continued, “Speak something! You will fan Me, but won’t talk to Me, or look at Me? If you have so much daring to fan Me as I rest, then why won’t you speak to Me?”But the disciple remained firm to the order of his Gurudeva and remained fanning, while the Lord endeavored to make him speak. Outside, Gurudeva was waiting to see what happened.When the Deitie’s curtains were opened at four in the afternoon, Vallabhācārya asked his disciple, “Who was talking to you?”“Gurudeva, I followed your instruction and didn’t open my eyes. But someone was saying again and again, ‘Open your eyes and talk to Me.’”“You did well.”Śrīla Gurudeva gave this example when commenting on this verse of Vilāpa-kusumāñjali.Śrīla Gurudeva would further explain.Kṛṣṇa could not tolerate seeing Rādhārānī’s one-pointed beloved maidservant. She was so close to Rādhārānī, such an expert maidservant, and so beautiful, that Kṛṣṇa came and tried to converse with Rati Mañjarī, teasing her from behind, in front, and side-to-side. Rati Mañjarī remained firm and ignored Kṛṣṇa, and then He began teasing her, “O Svāminī’s beloved! O Svāminī’s nearest and dearest! There is no one dearer to Her than you. You know Her better than any other. You are so chaste! You don’t speak with anyone else or look at anyone. Oh! You are so proud. If anyone comes to you, you show them contempt and reject them.”Kṛṣṇa began teasing her like this more and more, until finally Rati Mañjarī’s resolve was broken and she strongly responded to Kṛṣṇa’s antics. This is called vaco-vegam.Rādhārānī had told Rati Mañjarī, “You are so close to Me, don’t allow any distance to come between us. Don’t speak or make relation with anyone.”Rādhārānī knew what had transpired. When Rati Mañjarī fearfully came to Rādhārānī, She reprimanded her, “Why did you give Him a moment of your time? Why did you show Him any affection by speaking with Him? Go! Never come near Me. Leave here at once!”Rati Mañjarī left in a state of devastation. She fell down in a corner outside the kuñja in despair, and within, Rādhārānī also lamented. When Rādhārānī could no longer tolerate being separated, Lalitā-devī brought Rati back to Rādhārānī. Then Lalitā said to Śrīmatījī, “Will You forgive her and look just once in her direction?”Dāsa Gosvāmī says, “You have patience and tolerance, please forgive me. What was my fault? Amidst a thousand things Kṛṣṇa said, I only gave a momentary reply and looked at Him for a moment from the corner of my eyes.”Those mañjarīs and sakhīs who are in Rādhārānī’s group have this difficulty. Rādhārānī is not pleased if they have relation with any other.In the first verse of Vilāpa-kusumāñjali, Rādhārānī gave indication for Kṛṣṇa to go to Rūpa, and Rādhārānī watched, ‘What will Rūpa do?’ Like if I told you, ‘Do this work.’ Then I will watch what you do, and if you do any error, I will correct you. What did Rūpa Mañjarī do? She ran away when Kṛṣṇa came to her. However, Rati Mañjarī spoke with Kṛṣṇa, therefore Rādhārānī became upset. If she had not spoken with Kṛṣṇa, then Rādhārānī would have been happy ten or twenty times more, and Kṛṣṇa as well.Kṛṣṇa also would be happier if Rati had completely ignored Him, and He would have teased her even more, embracing her from behind, kissing her neck and then saying, “Won’t you speak to Me?” Kṛṣṇa would fold His hands to her a thousand times if she completely ignored Him.This mood is essential. Therefore, from an externalperspective, Rūpa Gosvāmī instructed, ‘vaco-vegam’ for sādhakas, and for those in the highest position, this is applied to a much greater extent.Once, a policeman came and spoke with me while I was cutting vegetables in Mathurā, near the kitchen in Keśavajī Gauḍīya Maṭha. Śrīla Gurudeva was sitting in a chair on the other side of the temple courtyard. After watching me speak to the policeman for sometime, he began shouting, “Why are you talking so much? What is the need? Why do you have so much affection for this outside man?”The policeman became astonished, got up and left. There is a very strong bond between the servant and served. If one is someone’s svapakṣa, any slight deviation will not be tolerated, even if it is of no great significance.tavaivāsmi tavaivāsmi na jīvāmi tvayā vināiti vijñāya devi tvaṁ naya māṁ caraṇāntikamVilāpa-kusumāñjali 96I am Yours! I am Yours! I cannot live without You! O Devī, please understand this and bring me to Your lotus feet.“O Rādhike, You are my heart, my soul. Everything I possess is Yours. You have complete adhikāra over me. I am Yours, I am Yours! Without You, I cannot stay one moment in this world. Please, please, give me shelter at Your lotus feet. I desire nothing other than the shelter of Your lotus feet.”Tavaivāsmi tavaivāsmi means, “I offer myself to You, I am Yours. I don’t know anything without You. I am Yours, I am Yours, I cannot live without You.” Why is this repeated? Is once not enough? The first ‘I am Yours’ means, “Many mañjarīs are close to You. May they accept me, give me shelter, and a chance to serve You. I am poor, fallen, and full of faults, but please accept me.” The second ‘I am Yours’ means, “I am praying to Your senior authorities, the sakhīs. May they accept and teach me, not reject me. May they call me forward and give me a drop of their love, otherwise I am dry. How can I stay with You without any love and affection?”If there is no love and affection, then one brahmacārī or devotee cannot remain following bhakti. He will be dry and suffering in māyā. If one devotee helps another, then devotion can grow in such a favorable environment. If a senior devotee nourishes junior devotees with his love and affection, the juniors’ devotion will become strong, and they will gradually become senior in bhakti, and will bestow love and affection to others and help them grow as well. This flow will then run on continuously.In this verse, Rati Mañjarī laments, “Aho! Devī, I have no one else in this world other than You! I am only Yours! I am only Yours! I cannot live without You for a single moment! Please bestow the shelter of Your lotus feet. I cannot go to any other, look at any other, nor have any dealing or connection with any other. I am Yours alone, Yours alone, Yours alone!”“What is the need to promise so many times?” Śrīmatījī asks.“If I spoke with anyone,” Rati replies, “it wasn’t for my own happiness. If anyone asks about You, then I feel the need to speak for Your sake. And if I don’t answer, then He teases me, ‘O stubborn one! O exalted arrogant maidservant of Your proud mistress. You are so exalted that you can’t spare me even a moment to speak.’ Then, when I said a few words, You became angered. I tell You sincerely that I am Yours, I am Yours, I am Yours! I cannot live another minute without You. Please give me shelter at Your feet. You are the reason I am living. Not seeing Your lotus feet, I cannot survive for even a moment. Please give me place at Your feet and don’t make me separate from You for even a moment.“Lalitā-devī is extremely dear to You, I am not so dear to You as she is. I made a mistake, but Lalitā-devi is very close to You. Please listen to Her request and accept me back in Your good graces. Don’t keep me away from You.”Now Rati Mañjarī prays to Lalitā-devī, “Please, by any means, remove Svāminī’s māna. If you can’t do this great task, who will I go to for shelter? And only having Her speak to me again is not enough; may She grant me Her intimate service. Otherwise, if She shrugs and says, ‘Okay, I forgave her, no problem,’ but doesn’t give me service again, keeping me at a distance, then what will be my position? Please petition Her on my behalf. If She doesn’t give me Her intimate service, I will die.”Dāsa Gosvāmī was in the highest state of separation in his sādhaka form. Even in mānasī-sevā, one cannot be deviated in service and dedication to one’s worshipable beloved.Once, one thirsty man came to the cottage of Lokanātha dāsa Gosvāmī and asked for water. Receiving no answer, He next went to the kuṭīra of Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura and begged for water. When Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura gave water to this thirsty man, Lokanātha dāsa Gosvāmī became upset and said, “Leave this place! If you want to serve others, then there is no need to stay here. You have no desire for bhajana. Go and serve others.” It was Kṛṣṇa who had come. There were many homes nearby in the village, why would anyone come to a Bābājī’s kuṭīra for water? Anyone could go drink water from a well. Why would one come and beg for a glass of water from Bābājīs? But Kṛṣṇa came to test Narottama, knowing, “He is on Rādhārānī’s side. Let me see what he does.”When Lokanātha dāsa Gosvāmī saw that Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura had some softness towards Kṛṣṇa, that he had become a little favorable to Kṛṣṇa, he said, “Go serve Him and His followers.”The situation is perilous for those solely dedicated to Rādhārānī. If they go a little to one side or another, then She has great māna. Breaking that māna is not easy.sva-kuṇḍaṁ tava lolākṣi sa-priyāyāḥsad aspadamatraiva mama samvāsa ihaiva mama saṁsthitiḥVilāpa-kusumāñjali 97O restless-eyed one, Your lake is the eternal dwelling-place of You and Your beloved. Here only will I reside and here alone will I stay.Dāsa Gosvāmī says, “Rādhā-kuṇḍa is extremely dear to You. Inside this kuṇḍa there is not only water, rather the mellows of all Your love are present here. All the sakhīs’ and mañjarīs’ love is present here as well. I stay on the bank of Your Rādhā-kuṇḍa without any qualification, but my eyes search in all directions to see from which way You are coming. The mañjarīs and sakhīs will call me and show me the pathway to Your lotus feet in a secluded grove. They will give me permission to reside here eternally.”Srimati may then say, “Why are you distressed? You are already living here at Radha kunda, performing bhajana. What problem do you have?”“No, no, no, I have this body now. Gaurahari offered me to His near and dear Svarūpa Dāmodara, who sent me here to Rādhā-kuṇḍa. But now this body is very old. Soon it will leave me.”“Are you sad because of this?”“No, no, no, I am not sad or afraid of leaving my body, but I want to permanently serve You in the form of a mañjarī. Please give this to me. Don’t give me a big rich post or make me wealthy and healthy and send me far away.”Dāsa Gosvāmī prays, “May I have eternal residence here at Radha kunda.” What is the meaning? This means, “I will serve You while You engage in intimate pastimes with Kṛṣṇa, ready to do anything needed. I will fan You, massage Your lotus feet, and make Your bed. I will stay here for all services, not going anywhere.”Dāsa Gosvāmī next prays, “I am staying here, but I am unqualified. Yet, You are searching for me, ‘Where is Rati? Where did she go?’ Then I say, ‘I am here, with You. Don’t worry. Why are You looking at me with restless eyes? Wherever Kṛṣṇa is present, I will bring Him to Your kuñja by any ploy. I know how to catch Him. But if I speak with Kṛṣṇa to bring Him back, will You be angered? I will teach Him how to break Your māna, but for this, please don’t become upset with me.“You engage in loving pastimes with Kṛṣṇa at Rādhā-kuṇḍa. May I reside here eternally. If I am always present, I can assist Him in pleasing You. I do not want to leave this service for any other engagement.” (click on the Title to read the full post)
O calm, grave one, when will I witness Your great ceremonial bathing, as You are being crowned as the queen of Vṛndāvana by Paurṇamāsī? Your coronation will be celebrated with a great festival of love, with auspicious singing, dancing, and the playing of vīṇās and other instruments, while You are being bathed with many pitchers of pure, scented water?Paurṇamāsī-devī begins a festival of auspicious songs for the pleasure of Vraja’s empress. The gopīs begin to dance and sing, while playing many musical instruments like the sitar.They then arrange drinks in big clay pots and begin Śrīmatī Rādhārānī’s mahā-abhiṣeka. At the time of Her abhiṣeka, they sing, while playing on many instruments on the order of Paurṇamāsī-devī.Kṛṣṇa then bathes Himself with the caraṇāmṛta of Śrīmatī Rādhārānī and all His blackness and impurity is washed away. All hardness, blackness, and sadness is cleansed and washed out of the kuñja and Vraja-maṇḍala.Mahāprabhu says, ‘Ceto darpanan marjanama—how can you clean your heart? This is only possible by:bhakta-pada-dhūli āra bhakta-pada-jalabhakta-bhukta-avaśeṣa – ei tina mahābalaCaitanya-caritāmṛta, Antya-līlā 16.60The foot-dust of a devotee, the water that has washed his feet and the remnants of food left by him are three very powerful items that help one progress in sādhana-bhakti.The only way the heart can be cleansed is by taking the caraṇāmṛta of Śrīmatī Rādhārānī or Her beloved followers. The dust from their feet is vraja-raja; this is what makes Vraja so special. Vraja is known as va-raja. Va means ‘special’ and raja means ‘dust’.Kṛṣṇa always rolls in this dust and smears it on His body. He takes the Vraja-devīs’ caraṇāmṛta, remnants, and foot dust, and distributes it. By this process, the heart is easily purified and illuminated.Helpful, loveful, hopeful, merciful, blessful, and very powerful Śrīmatī Rādhārānī has tolerance and patience, and She knows everything. She does not reject anyone. When Kṛṣṇa is nearby Her, He is very happy, and when He is a little disconnected with Her, then He becomes dry, Brahma.Śakti-śaktimator-abheda, Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa are inseparable. Therefore Kṛṣṇa never wants to go an inch away from svarūpa-śakti, Śrīmatī Rādhārānī. She is sweet and humble and maintains all living entities with Her potency.Paurṇamāsī-devī gives everyone in the kuñja-kuṭīra a chance to serve Rādhārānī during Her mahā-abhiṣeka. Some serve by singing, some by dancing, some by playing instruments, and some by bathing Her directly. They use camphor, aguru, kastūrī, and arrange many full pots of water with these fragrances inside to start Rādhārānī’s mahā-abhiṣeka.After this abhiṣeka, everything in Vraja-maṇḍala becomes joyful and surcharged by the potency of Her caraṇāmṛta. Drinking this nectar, Pṛthvī-devī blossoms in joy.Dāsa Gosvāmī prays to be there, assisting in the mahā-abhiṣeka of Śrīmatī Rādhārānī, and receiving Her caraṇāmṛta.bhrātrā go-’yutam atra mañju-vadane snehena dattvālayaṁ śrīdāmnā kṛpaṇāṁ pratoṣya jaṭilāṁ rakṣākhya-rākā-kṣaṇenītāyāh sukha-śoka-rodana-bharais te sāndravantyāḥ paraṁ vātsalyāj janakau vidhāsyata itaḥ kiṁ lālanaṁ me ‘grataḥ Vilāpa-kusumāñjali 88O fair-faced one, will I be present on Rakṣā Pūrṇimā, the full-moon day in the month of Śravaṇa, when Your brother Śrīdāmā comes to Yāvaṭa, with ten thousand cows to satisfy the greedy Jaṭilā, and he affectionately takes You along to Varsānā, where Your parents lovingly fondle You in front of me, as You melt with weeping from both happiness and sorrow?Jaṭilā is very greedy for wealth. She is a great miser. On Baladeva’s birthday, Rākhi Pūrṇimā, she tries to stop Rādhārānī from going to Her father’s house in Varsānā. Why? She knows that if Rādhārānī stays at her house, then Vṛṣabhānu Mahārāja will send many gifts for his beloved daughter. Not only Her father, but Lalitā, Viśākhā, and everyone in Vraja-maṇḍala will send Her many presentations, like sweets, cloth, and ornaments.Greedy Jaṭilā thinks, “If Rādhārānī goes to Her father’s house, nothing will come for me. When Rādhārānī is present, my cows give a lot of milk, and so much wealth automatically comes. But when She leaves, everything becomes dry.”Śrīdāma approaches Jaṭilā and says, “Listen, I will give you thousands of cows in charity. Please allow my sister to come to Varsānā. I have come to ask this of you.”Hearing this news, Śrīmatī Rādhārānī becomes overjoyed. She is anxious, “When will I go and meet with My parents? When will I meet with grandmother?” Her heart is very soft and She begins to weep in separation from Her parents.Rati Mañjarī says, “I will go there and request the greedy mother-in-law of my Svāminī, ‘O Jaṭilā, how many cows do you want? I will tell Vṛṣabhānu Mahārāja and his brothers, and they will give you as many cows as you want. Just please give permission for Rādhārānī to go to Her father’s house. Today is Rakṣā-bandhana. Rādhārānī will go and bind a bracelet on Her brother’s wrist, and he will give Her cloth, ornaments, and many new gifts. Please give permission.”But Jaṭilā at first does not agree. “I will ask my son,” she says, “if he agrees, then I will consider granting permission. I will also ask my daughter. If they agree, then I will give permission.”Abhimanyu has great reverence for Śrīmatī Rādhikā and always keeps a respectful distance from Her. When Brahmā stole the calves and boys and put them in a cave, Kṛṣṇa Himself took on their forms for a year. He became Abhimanyu and all the sakhās, and in their forms, married all the gopīs. When the real Abhimanyu returned after a year, he asked his mother,“How has Rādhārānī come to our house? Why is She here?”“What do you mean?” Jaṭilā said, “She is your wife.”“No, how is that possible! She is highly respectable,” Abhimanyu said. “She is the daughter of Vṛṣabhānu Mahārāja, the king of Varsānā. I am very lowly.”Abhimanyu was in the cave for one year and did not know he was meant to have married to Rādhārānī. He came back and offered praṇāma to Śrīmatī Rādhārānī, and hearing they were married, he said, “No, this can’t be true.”The next day he again asked, “How did Rādhārānī come to my house? Why is She here?”He heard, “When you were in the mouth of Aghāsura, you became affected by the monster’s poison and fell lifeless. Then Kṛṣṇa requested Rādhārānī to go help you and remove all the poisonous effect. She then came and gave you new life.”Hearing this, Abhimanyu respected Her even more, saying, “Oh, She gave me new life? She is a worshipable goddess.”From that time, Abhimanyu stayed outside in a small hut and did not reside in the house. Every day, after milking the cows, he brings many gifts and puts them at the door of Rādhārānī’s room. He offers praṇāma there, and returns to his hut.“Won’t you stay in the house?” Jaṭilā and Kuṭilā ask him.“No, this house is not mine. It is Rādhārānī’s house. She is Vṛṣabhānu-rāja-nandinī and is very respectable. She is worshiped by everyone in Vraja-maṇḍala.”Abhimanyu stays outside as a guard and gatekeeper. Even Brahmā comes to worship Śrīmatī Rādhārānī. Abhimanyu has knowledge of Her glories; therefore Rādhārānī was safe there. In Varsānā, there could be some difficulty meeting Kṛṣṇa, with Her parents and family all there. But in Yāvaṭa, Rādhārānī is alone with Her sakhīs and mañjarīs. She is safe and protected, as others have no adhikāra to enter there.Sometimes Kṛṣṇa comes to Yāvaṭa in the dress of Abhimanyu. Jaṭilā and Kuṭilā are then overjoyed to see Him entering Śrīmatī’s room.“This is very good,” says Jaṭilā. “I am happy that finally Abhimanyu is spending time with Rādhārānī.”On Rākhi Pūrṇimā, Śrīdāma asked permission for Rādhārānī to come with him to the house of Her father. For a long time She has not met with Vṛṣabhānu and Her mother Kīrtidā-devī.When Jaṭilā’s greed is satisfied, she allows Rādhārānī to return home for sometime. Rādhārānī goes home with Śrīdāma. There, Kīrtidā-devī takes Rādhārānī in her arms and smells Her head. Then Her father asks Her, “Do You like Yāvaṭa or Varsānā? If You like Varsānā, I will never leave You. You will stay here. O my dear daughter, You are the pupil of our eyes. Without You, we have no light.”She is very happy to see Her family after so long, but She is also upset. “You didn’t send Me any news,” She says, “and you didn’t come to see Me.”Because of this, She cries while meeting with Her father and mother.lajjayāli-purataḥ parato māṁ gāhvaraṁ giri-pater bata nītvādivya-gānam api tat-svara-bhedaṁ śikṣayiṣyasi kadā sa-daye tvamVilāpa-kusumāñjali 89O merciful one, when, because I feel shy before Your friends, will You take me to a cave at Govardhana and tutor me in the art of singing?Dāsa Gosvāmī says, “O Rādhike, please take me inside the caves of Girirāja Govardhana and teach me how to sing, teach me how to play the vīṇā, and guitar. I cannot learn from anyone else. Please take me alone inside a cave of Girirāja Govardhana and there teach me how to sing and play beautiful melodies.”Songs are of many kinds. One kind is for the happiness of others, and another kind is for lifting the spirits of a person who is sad. Another type of singing is such that its hearer will become very hungry and eager to eat. Another type of song will make you want to play sports. Sports players like to hear this kind of music as they play. And in the military, while preparing to fight, soldiers like to hear music that is dangerous and ferocious, like lions roaring.Sometimes, when there is no rain although the long expected clouds travel overhead, the appropriate song must be sung, and then it begins to rain. Such prayers are found in the Sāma-Veda.When Kṛṣṇa sleeps, there is one type of song to sing. When He wakes, there is another type of song, and while He eats there is another. When He sets out with the cows, His sakhās make happy music behind Him. The cows and calves bound around blissfully, the birds fly very fast, and all creatures are thus involved in a grand musical festival in the forest. Even the trees begin to dance, hearing the joyous musical celebration as Kṛṣṇa passes them. It seems as if the trees will jump out of the ground and run along with Him.yācitā lalitayā kila devyā lajjayā nata-mukhīṁ gaṇato māmdevi divya-rasa-kāvya-kadambaṁ pāṭhayisyasi kadā praṇayenaVilāpa-kusumāñjali 90O Devī, when, requested by Lalitā-devī, will You affectionately ask me, my head bowed with shyness in the assembly, to recite many splendid and sweet poems?Dāsa Gosvāmī prays, “O Rādhike, when will You accept me into the group of Your near and dear sakhīs, and ask me to sing poetry for Your pleasure? How can I learn this art of sweet service? Please teach me. I will go to Your class. I will learn from You which poem to sing at which time, with which melody.”nija-kuṇḍa-taṭi-kuñje guñjad-bhramara-saṅkuledevi tvaṁ kacchapī-śikṣāṁ kadā māṁ kārayiṣyasi Vilāpa-kusumāñjali 91O Devī, when will You teach me to play the kacchapī, in a grove, filled with humming bees, on the shore of Your lake?”At Rādhā-kuṇḍa, there are many honeybees that drink so much nectar from the lotus flowers that they are unable to return to their hive. They sleep in the lotus flowers, having become intoxicated by drinking their nectar. This signifies that, if anyone comes to Rādhā-kuṇḍa and just once gets a chance to serve Rādhārānī, then they cannot go back. Even Parabrahma came and doesn’t want to ever leave.Many kuñja-kuṭīras are present at this Rādhā-kuṇḍa. “When will You call me inside one of these kuñja-kuṭīras and instruct me to play the kacchapī? At such a time, Kṛṣṇa will come from a distance to hear the music.vihārais truṭitaṁ hāraṁ gumphitaṁ dayitaṁ kadāsakhīnāṁ lajjayā devi saṁjñayā māṁ nidekṣyasi Vilāpa-kusumāñjali 92O Devī, when will You, being shy before Your sakhīs, hint that I should re-string Your favorite necklace, which was broken in Your pastimes?Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī now prays, “O Devī Rādhike, You are now playing kandarpa-līlā with Kṛṣṇa. Your necklace breaks in the course of this game, and this I will fix. You are very shy and will not tell anyone. But You give me a hint, and I step forward to carefully fix Your necklace.” (CLICK on the Title to see more)
Kṛṣṇa plays His flute everywhere around Girirāja Govardhana, and He meets with the Vraja-devīs in Govardhana’s kuñjas. Sometimes He goes to Candra-sarovara, to the kuñja of Candrāvalī. There she offers Him a garland of mallikā flowers.Later, Kṛṣṇa comes to Rādhā-kuṇḍa, still wearing that garland. But He sees that no one talks with Him, meets with Him, or even looks at Him. He then feels dry and despondent.“Oh, this garland is very wicked,” He says in disgust and casts aside the gift from Candrāvalī. He then bathes in Śyāma-kuṇḍa and Rādhā-kuṇḍa, and feels a little better. He then comes before the gopīs and prays at their feet for mercy and for Rādhārānī’s darśana. Feeling a breeze that has touched Rādhārānī and come to Him, He experiences great bliss and His heart is cooled.In his Rādhā-rasa-sudhā-nidhi, Śrīla Prabhodānanda Sarasvatī glorifies Śrīmatī Rādhārānī as follows:yasyāḥ kadāpī vasanāṣcala-khelanottha- dhanyāti-dhanya-pavanena kṛtārtha-mānīyogīndra-durgama-gatir madhusūdano ‘pi tasyā namo ‘stu vṛṣabhānu-bhuvo diśe ‘pi Rādhā-rasa-sudhā-nidhi 2Obeisances to the direction that faces Śrī Vṛṣabhānu’s daughter. When the breeze, coming from that direction, playfully moves the edge of Her garment, Madhusūdana, who cannot be attained by even the greatest yogīs, thinks that His life has become a great success.By some sly process, Candrāvalī’s followers brought Kṛṣṇa to their kuñja. There they offered Kṛṣṇa a nice outfit and decorated Him. He thought, “If I go like this to Rādhā-kuṇḍa everyone will be pleased with Me.” But when He reached Rādhā-kuṇḍa He found that no one was pleased at all. It seemed that even Girirāja Govardhana neglected Him. Why? Girirāja is Śrīmatī Rādhārānī’s follower. Therefore he also ignored Kṛṣṇa. Every kuṇḍa and kuñja-kuṭīra at Govardhana is cold to Kṛṣṇa and Kṛṣṇa cannot find anyone there, not even any animals.He looked around and thought, “I must have done something quite wrong.”He looked down at His outfit and became saddened. “Because of these garments Rādhārānī’s gopīs have become angry and have hidden from Me? Where have they gone?” Then He prays deeply.Suddenly, from the north side of Rādhā-kuṇḍa, where Śrīmatī Rādhārānī is sitting with the sakhīs, a breeze touches Śrīmatī Rādhārānī’s lotus feet and takes their fragrant message to the south side of Rādhā-kuṇḍa, where Kṛṣṇa is present. When Kṛṣṇa smells this, He comes to His senses.“This attire is not good for Me,” He thinks, and He takes off His outfit and ornaments. He purifies Himself by bathing in Śyāma-kuṇḍa and Rādhā-kuṇḍa. “Yes,” He says, “now I’m feeling better.”Then He sees some mañjarīs have approached. “Your body has a horrible smell,” they say, “clearly You have gone to the abode of many buffaloes. Perhaps You didn’t herd cows today and played with buffaloes instead. Has Brahmā come and stolen Your cows again? Has Viśvāmṛta given You buffaloes to herd in their place? Buffaloes are very dirty; they like to sleep in drains and bathe in foul water. But cows are always neat and clean. You have definitely been with buffaloes, for Your body has such a foul scent.”The mañjarīs bring candana, sugandhi, arbaṭa, and other fragrant substances and ask Kṛṣṇa, “Shall we clean You?”“This will not do,” Kṛṣṇa says, “only the dust of Vraja will suffice.”“Yes, Rādhārānī’s footdust will purify You,” the manjarīs respond. “You should beware of the other side. Your desire and nature will change if You go to the other side. If You interact with Candrāvalī’s party then Rādhika’s group will shun You.”“I was not happy with Candrāvalī,” Kṛṣṇa said, “so I came to drink the sweet honey of Rādhārānī’s affection. I left Candrāvalī and came to Rādhā-kuṇḍa and cleansed Myself in the pure nectar of the water that bathed Śrīmatījī. Now will She accept me?”samastād unmatta-bhramara-kula-jhaṅkāra-nikarair lasat-padma-stomair api vihaga-rāvair api paramsakhī-vṛndaiḥ svīyaiḥ sarasi madhure prāṇa-patinā kadā drakṣyāmas te śaśi-mukhi navaṁ keli-nivahamVilāpa-kusumāñjali 75O sweet, moon-faced one, when will I witness Your ever-fresh water-sports with the Lord of Your heart and Your friends in Your sweet lake, which is filled with a host of splendid lotuses and is surrounded by chirping birds and humming bees?Śrīmatī Rādhārānī is present at Rādhā-kuṇḍa, where atop splendid lotuses, there are many honeybees that hum sweetly and feast on nectar.There are also many birds in all directions that sing happily. Why are they so happy? Receiving Your darśana, the hearts of the sakhīs, mañjarīs, birds, and animals are filled with happiness.”Kṛṣṇa has left Candrāvalī’s kuñja and Śrīmatī Rādhārānī’s victory is celebrated in bliss. The sakhīs sing, dance, and joke with Kṛṣṇa. Everyone waits for that darśana. How is that rasa? It is like when the full moon rises and everyone becomes naturally joyful. Kṛṣṇa, the lord of the Vraja-devīs’ hearts, has come and now the gopīs celebrate. There is a great assembly of birds singing. Bees are drinking nectar amidst the swirls of fragrant lotuses and their buzzing adds to the birds’ musical performance.Dāsa Gosvāmī prays to be present during that occasion, waiting to see what happens next. He is ready, “What orders will come to me? I will arrange everything needed. When inspiration comes, I will quickly perform my service for Rādhārānī.”This wonderful program on the bank of Rādhā-kuṇḍa starts in the morning. There are many types of flowers in the kuñja-kuṭīras surrounding Rādhā-kuṇḍa, and an ocean of bliss pervades the whole atmosphere. The sakhīs and mañjarīs are very busy there, decorating the kuñjas.When will that Rādhā-kuṇḍa give us Rādhikā’s darśana and admission into eternal service? Dāsa Gosvāmī says, “Without the mercy of Rādhā-kuṇḍa one will not be able to enter the camp of Rādhārānī and follow Her footsteps, nor will one understand the secrets of Kṛṣṇa’s service.”Rādhā-kuṇḍa is the place in Vraja-maṇḍala where all favorable things are present for Śrīmatī Rādhārānī’s service.sarovara-lasat-taṭe madhupa-guñji-kuñjāntare sphuṭat-kusuma-saṅkule vividha-puṣpa-saṅghair mudā ariṣṭa-jayinā kadā tava varoru bhūṣā-vidhīr vidhāsyata iha priyaṁ mama sukhābdhim ātanvatāVilāpa-kusumāñjali 76O beautiful-thighed one, when will the ocean of my bliss expand to see Kṛṣṇa, the victor over Ariṣṭāsura, happily decorate You with many kinds of flowers in a kuñja, filled with blossoming flowers and humming bees, on the splendid bank of Your lake?In Rādhā-kuṇḍa, if anything contrary enters, Kṛṣṇa destroys it. Like when Ariṣṭāsura came to Vraja, Kṛṣṇa destroyed him. What does this mean? If a person comes to Rādhā-kuṇḍa and sits on Her bank, at the lotus feet of Rādhārānī, then any ariṣṭa, demonic mundane desire, will not be able to come and cheat that sādhaka, pulling him away from service to Śrīmatījī. Kṛṣṇa is present there with a strong mood, ready to destroy any opposition. Any anarthas or unwanted desires will be unable to disturb one. The sādhaka will have no further troubles. Kṛṣṇa will give him a sweet nature and good desires.At Rādhā-kuṇḍa, the sakhīs are busy serving Rādhārānī. Some are painting designs on Her hands and feet, and some are combing Her hair, which they decorate with small flowers.The mañjarīs say, “Collect peacock feathers here. Kṛṣṇa likes them so much.” Then they collect peacock feathers and make crowns with them and give these to the sakhīs. Then they make dresses. After Kṛṣṇa bathes, they will decorate and dress Him. The sakhīs and mañjarīs are ready to perform this service.On the other side, the sādhakas see that the gopīs are busily engaged in serving Śrīmatī Rādhārānī. Kṛṣṇa has come Himself and is waiting for a chance to serve Rādhārānī. He prays to the sakhīs and mañjarīs, “When will you give Me chance to comb Rādhārānī’s hair? I will separate Her hairs and will gently braid them. How will I make a sweet relation with Her hair? I will massage oil into Her hair, made fragrant with kastūrī, and then I will place flowers and pollen in Her charming locks.”Kṛṣṇa prays to the gopīs and waits with trembling hands. He cannot control Himself. It is as if all His strength has left and He is filled with fear, feeling within, “What will happen if I do something wrong?”Kṛṣṇa sees Śrīmatī Rādhārānī’s form in the water of Rādhā-kuṇḍa. He sits on the bank of Rādhā-kuṇḍa and watches Her pastimes and interaction with the sakhīs and mañjarīs in the reflection of the water.“How can I serve Her? How can I get permission?” Kṛṣṇa prays to the sakhīs and mañjarīs in a choked voice, with hairs standing on end and tears gently falling from His cheeks. The sakhīs come from another side and offer Kṛṣṇa peacock feathers and guñjā-mālā. Kṛṣṇa had fallen into an internal state of meditation. At the sound of the gopīs’ words, His external sense returns and He feels, “I am very lucky today. Certainly they will give Me permission to serve and they will teach Me the proper process.”At this Radha-kunda, all special training, power, and taste is given to serve Rādhārānī. (click on the Title to see more)
When I came to Mathura to stay with Gurudeva, I was alone. I left one family, and came to stay in the family of Vaisnavas. We were lucky to have Pujyapada Bhakti Vaibhava Puri Gosvami Maharaja visit us in Mathura; he would often speak harikatha in the evening. Gurudeva would give him the vyasasana and request him to speak. Pujyapada Bhakti Bhudeva Srauti Maharaja, Pujyapada Bhakti Jivana Janardhana Maharaja, Pujyapada Hrisikesa Maharaja, Pujyapada Paramahamsa, Maharaja, Pujyapada Sara Maharaja, and many other Acaryas would come to Mathura. They shared a sweet relationship with Gurudeva. Gurudeva would respect them, and he would tell me to serve them. In this way, I would be able to understand them.He said, “Unless one respects and serves the family members of God, one can never realize anything.” Therefore, he requested us to serve them. We didn’t serve as a matter of duty. People who serve by force have no love. Guru and Vaisnavas are transcendental power houses. They are the expansions of Svarupa sakti. If you serve them, you will be connected to their power. By their power, you will understand who the Vaisnavas are.Millions of people came to Mahaprabhu. Mahaprabhu would place them under the guidance of His different associates like Sri Svarupa Damodara, Raghunatha das Gosvami, Vakresvara Pandit, Gopala Guru, and Gadadhara Pandit. No one could understand Mahaprabhu’s mood without taking shelter of His associates.I never thought that Bhakti Vaibhava Puri Maharaja was not my Gurudeva. He taught me many things. I was a servant in his temple for many months. I would only work and work. Maharaja would call me a karmi, or worker. He would say, “You are running up and down the stairs a thousand times a day. Then, you run to Holi gate, and then to Janma bhumi, like a horse.” I was always working. Therefore, when Maharaja came to see me, he would call me a maha-karmi. But, he had so much love for me. Once, he pulled me to Rajamundry and to Kovur. He also took me to the Caitanya Candrodaya temple in Balesvara. Why? He had unlimited love. I will never be able to define or explain this love. Before, I was with Maharaja. For me, he was my relative, my family. But, I could not understand his nature as a Mahabhagavat, and I would argue with him. I never thought that this could be Vaisnava aparadha, or that this could make a Vaisnava angry.Sometimes, Maharaja or Pujyapada Janardhana Maharaja or Pujyapada Srauti Maharaja would come and stay for fifteen days or a month in Mathura. Vrndavana only had Caitanya Gaudiya Matha, and Mathura only had our temple. Srila Puri Maharaja would come and give class. His classes were infused with much spiritual power. It was like power coming from the powerhouse. This would purify one, and like the words of the Acaryas, his words would completely transform the heart. Maharaja would close his eyes when he was speaking. He would speak for half an hour, or one hour, without opening his eyes. Sometimes, he would cry, and sometimes he would smile. Sometimes, he spoke without stopping for a long time.At that time, we didn’t understand the meaning of bhava. When one crosses all anarthas, and comes near the stage of rati, he develops a special mood. Ordinary people do not know who a Vaisnava is. Vaisnavas mercifully make a platform. They clean the heart, and they help someone to understand who a Vaisnava really is. Only Vaisnavas can understand Vaisnavas. But, ordinary people have no intelligence. They cannot understand this.By the causeless mercy of Pujyapada Bhakti Vaibhava Puri Gosvami Maharaja, he accepted me, and because of this, I never distanced myself from Vaisnavas in my life. He would tell me, “Apart from the Vaisnavas, nothing in this world has any value. They are the family members of God. They are the expansions of God’s body.”
When will I see You gazing upon the prince of Vraja, His cheeks sweetened with a smile, as His mother anxiously strokes Him while He departs for the forest, fulfilling His vow to protect the surabhi cows? (Vilāpa-kusumāñjali)Dasa Gosvāmī now prays to be near Rādhārānī as She watches Kṛṣṇa passing by on His way to go grazing the cows, when mother Yaśodā embraces him. For the service and protection of the noble members of the surabhi dynasty of cows, Kṛṣṇa daily enters the forests of Vraja. Kṛṣṇa took a vow to always serve the cows. He does not go to the same place every day, in consideration of the area, not wanting to overburden it with all the cows.Mother Yaśodā worries about Kṛṣṇa, thinking, “Gopāla is only a small boy, but He daily goes out in the summer heat or winter chill, despite rain or any other harsh weather; He never takes rest. The sun is strong and burns Him. How can I protect Him?” She has affectionate concern for Kṛṣṇa’s welfare.Kṛṣṇa’s earrings kiss His cheeks. He smiles and looks side to side. Yaśodā Mātā watches His every movement. She thinks, “What is helpful for Kṛṣṇa?” and she is ready to arrange anything at once. Kṛṣṇa has relation and love for anyone who resides in Gokula and promises to protect and serve all those who come and stay in Vraja. This relation is not any ordinary or temporary thing. Kṛṣṇa does not make friendship with anyone for a day; His love is eternal.Kṛṣṇa is the prince of Vraja, but He doesn’t consider Himself royalty too superior to serve. He does not feel that He is a highly respectable authority. This is not His nature.Vṛndāvana has many forests. When Kṛṣṇa takes the cows out to graze, He is not only taking care of the cows, but He takes care of the forests and gardens as well. The creepers, plants, and trees will become dry if they are not taken care of. The cows trim the grass and keep it clean and healthy.Farmers clean and till their fields to keep them fertile and healthy. The cows are like the gardeners of Vraja, keeping everything fresh and pure by fertilizing the forests and aerating the land. The cow dung and urine make those areas healthy and vibrant. This is food for the plants and trees. If the cows did not graze in the forests, then the greenery would not get this extra nourishment. In the forest, there are many varieties of plants and medicinal herbs. By eating these plants and herbs, the cows’ udders become filled with wholesome milk. In this way, everyone benefits by Kṛṣṇa taking the cows out to graze. Therefore Kṛṣṇa vows to always care for the cows, Vrajavāsīs, and forests of Vraja.As Kṛṣṇa goes through the forests, He accepts the trees and plants’ heartfelt gifts of fruits and flowers and distributes them to the sakhās.Yaśodā Mātā is always concerned for Kṛṣṇa’s welfare when He is in the forests of Vraja. To pacify her, Rati Mañjarī says, “O Nandarānī, don’t worry. I will go to the forest and look after Kṛṣṇa. I will change my appearance and will help arrange for Kṛṣṇa’s service while He is grazing the cows. Rādhikā will also cook some refreshments for Kṛṣṇa. I will help arrange all this. The mañjarīs and I are ready to see that Kṛṣṇa is cared for while He is outside Nanda-bhavana.”Yaśodā Mātā is pleased to hear this and says, “Oh! You will take care of my Kanhaiyā? He cares for everyone, but I always worry about who will take care of Him.” Yaśodā Mātā is very happy to hear that the sakhīs and mañjarīs are there to help Kṛṣṇa in the forest and she gives her blessings to Rati Mañjarī.goṣṭheśayātha kutukāc chapathādi-pūrvaṁ su-snigdhayā sumukhi mātṛ-parārdhato ‘pihā hrī-mati priya-gaṇaiḥ saha bhojyamānāṁ kiṁ tvāṁ nirīkṣya hṛdaye mudam adya lāpsye Vilāpa-kusumāñjali 66O bashful fair-faced one! When will my heart feel great joy to see the queen of Vraja, who is more affectionate than countless mothers, taking an oath to make You sit down to eat with Your friends?Dāsa Gosvāmī in his internal form as Rati Mañjarī prays to Rādhārānī, “O Śrīmatī, You are supremely beautiful. Seeing You, people become filled with joy, and in the absence of Your darśana everyone becomes distressed. In Nanda-bhavana, while eating, without Your darśana the food has no taste for Kṛṣṇa.”After Kṛṣṇa finishes His meal, Yaśoda Mātā affectionately requests Śrīmatī to take prasāda. Rādhārānī becomes shy. She sits down with Lalitā, Viśākhā, and the other sakhīs and takes something. Rati Mañjarī feels great bliss observing Śrīmatījī as She tastes Her cooking. As Kṛṣṇa ate, Śrīmatī watched from a hidden place, and Kṛṣṇa would casually look up now and again and They exchanged sidelong glances. Now, when Rādhārānī sits to eat on the request of Yaśodā Mātā, Kṛṣṇa comes and peeks through the window to watch His beloved. Receiving darśana of Śrīmatī is Kṛṣṇa’s favorite nourishment.While Kṛṣṇa eats, Śrīmatī watches from a hidden place and waits for Him to finish. When Kṛṣṇa gets up and leaves, as the elders and other guests in Nanda-bhavana are otherwise preoccupied, He and Śrīmatī look for a chance to momentarily meet. Śrīmatī wants to meet with Kṛṣṇa and begins walking away from the kitchen, but then Yaśodā Mātā calls out to Her, “O Lālī, come eat something.”Rādhārānī returns unwillingly and sits down to eat. In the meantime, Kṛṣṇa waits at the secret meeting place for Śrīmatī. When She doesn’t arrive, Kṛṣṇa comes to where She is eating with Yaśodā and Her sakhīs. On the pretense of asking Yaśodā something, He glances lovingly at Śrīmatī from the corner of His eyes. Rādhārānī blushes and covers Her face with a cloth while She takes prasāda with the sakhīs and Yaśodā. Seeing this in his meditation, Dāsa Gosvāmī becomes overjoyed.āliṅganena śirasaḥparicumbanena snehāvalokana-bhareṇa ca khañjanākṣigoṣṭheśayā nava-vadhūm iva lālyamānāṁ tvāṁ prekṣya kiṁ hṛdi mahotsavam ātaniṣye Vilāpa-kusumāñjali 67O Rādhe, eyes restless as khañjana birds! When will I experience a festival of joy seeing You being fondled by the queen of Vraja, who embraces You, kisses Your head, and gazes upon You lovingly as if You were Her newly married daughter-in-law?Like a newly married girl who comes to serve at the house of her husband after marriage, Śrīmatī Rādhārānī comes in the early morning to Nandagrāma with Her sakhīs and mañjarīs to cook for Kṛṣṇa.While Rādhārānī is still on the pathway to Nandagrāma, Yaśodā Mātā comes down to meet Her. She runs and embraces Śrīmatī Rādhārānī. She smells Her head, kisses Her, lifts Her into her arms, and carries Her up the hill to her own room. There she gives Śrīmatī Rādhārānī new earrings, necklaces, saris, and many other gifts. She gives Her so many new things every day. She embraces and kisses each of the young girls and gives them many gifts.Why does Yaśodā Mātā have this heartfelt love for them all? If anyone desires to serve Kṛṣṇa, then Yaśodā is very pleased and has so much love for that person. She serves and thinks of everyone’s welfare.Dāsa Gosvāmī prays, “When will I be present in Nanda-bhavana, and under guidance of Yaśodā Mātā, I will assist Śrīmatī Rādhārānī in the kitchen. Love and affection will flow from Yaśodā Mātā’s heart to all the sakhīs and mañjarīs.” Anything done with love is very sweet. Kṛṣṇa longs for that love. Śrīmatī Rādhārānī’s hlādinī-śakti spreads out to the hearts of all the Vrajavāsīs, like a transcendental sun of love, and shines in the hearts of those in the moods of dāsya-rasa, sakhya-rasa, vātsalya-rasa, and mādhurya-rasa.hā rūpa-mañjari sakhi praṇayena deviṁ tvad-bāhu-datta-bhuja-vallarim āyatākṣīmpaścād ahaṁ kalita-kāma-taraṅga-raṅgāṁ neṣyāmi kiṁ hari-vibhūṣita-keli-kuñjamVilāpa-kusumāñjali 68O dear friend Rūpa Mañjarī, when will I, from behind, lead our Devī, who has become a dancing arena for waves of amorous passion, Her large eyes wide-open, and Your arm affectionately placed about the vine of Her waist, to the keli-kuñja forest grove, decorated by the presence of Śrī Hari?Dāsa Gosvāmī prays to accompany Śrīmatī as She goes to the keli-kuñja. In his internal form as Rati Mañjarī, Dāsa Gosvāmī is there, watching Kṛṣṇa’s playful pastimes. Rati Mañjarī is present behind Rūpa Mañjarī and they walk with Śrīmatī to the keli-kuñja. Rūpa Mañjarī has decorated the kuñja, making a brilliant throne of flowers. Śrīmatī Rādhārānī sits on the flower throne in the kuñja and eagerly awaits Kṛṣṇa’s arrival.If there is no sweet relation, then no one will want to follow behind another. Ordinarily, people follow others for their own selfishness, but this temporary relationship is contemptible, whereas the sweet relation between the Vrajavāsīs is most glorious.Rati Mañjarī thinks, “When will I carry Kṛṣṇa’s loving presentations and give them to Rūpa Mañjarī?”Rūpa Mañjarī will not accept anything independently. She offers anything that comes to her to Śrīmatī Rādhārānī. Kṛṣṇa sends a necklace or a beautiful garland to Rūpa Mañjarī through the hand of Rati Mañjarī. Rati Mañjarī shows this gift to Śrīmatī Rādhārānī, then Rādhārānī gives it to Rūpa Mañjarī, and says, “No, no. This is good for you, you should accept it.”This garland isn’t only made of flowers. Kṛṣṇa’s heartfelt love is contained within. After much opposition, Rūpa Mañjarī wears this mālā by Rādhārānī’s insistance; she becomes very shy and looks down, experiencing Kṛṣṇa’s love present in this gift.sākaṁ tvayā sakhi nikuñja-gṛhe sarasyāḥ svasyās taṭe kusuma-bhāvita-bhuṣaṇenaśṛṅgāritaṁ vidadhatī priyam īśvarī sā hā hā bhaviṣyati mad-īkṣaṇa-gocaraḥ kim Vilāpa-kusumāñjali 69My dear friend Rūpa Mañjarī, when will I be able to see you with my mistress decorating Her beloved with flower ornaments in a kuñja-kuṭīra by the bank of Her lake?Śrimati Radika is in an isolated grove on the bank of Radha-kuṇḍa. Rūpa is nearby, feeling that although the kuñja-kuṭīra is decorated with beautiful flowers, it is lacking perfect beauty because Kṛṣṇa is not there. Rūpa Mañjarī finds some means to invite Kṛṣṇa, who comes and sits on a seat of flowers. The sakhīs begin to fan Him. The flowers are fragrant, but Kṛṣṇa is restless. The flowers and fans do not cool Him. He is unsatisfied. Why?Kṛṣṇa says, “O Rūpa Mañjari when will your adhīśvari Śrīmatī Rādhārānī give Me darśana? I came here only for Her darśana.”Rūpa Mañjarī replies, “My Svāminī is resting inside a kuñja nearby.” “I came only for Her darśana,” Kṛṣṇa repeats.Rūpa Mañjarī gives an indication to Rati Mañjarī, who goes and tells Rādhārānī. Hearing Kṛṣṇa’s message, Śrīmatī Rādhārānī hides deeper in the kuñja-kuṭīra, not wanting to give Him darśana so easily. When Rati returns, Kṛṣṇa begins to search for Rādhikā.śrutvā vicakṣaṇa-mukhād vraja-rāja-sūnoḥ śastābhisāra-samayaṁ subhage ‘tra hṛṣṭāsūkṣmāmbaraiḥ kusuma-saṁskṛta-karṇa-pūra- hārādibhiś ca bhavatīṁ kim alaṅkariṣyeVilāpa-kusumāñjali 70O beautiful one, hearing from the parrot Vicakṣaṇa that the prince of Vraja has already left for His rendezvous with You, can I joyfully decorate You with fine garments, flower earrings, and necklaces?In Vraja, there is a clever parrot named Vicakṣaṇa, who witnesses Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa’s sweet loving pastimes and repeats them to the gopīs. Sometimes this parrot brings messages back and forth between Rādhārānī’s camp and Kṛṣṇa’s camp.Once, Kṛṣṇa sent Vicakṣaṇa on an errand, saying, “Go and search out where there are nice flowers. Collect them and give them to Me. I will make flower earrings and will decorate a dress and make many flower ornaments for Rādhārānī. Then I will take these and present them to Her.” This parrot returns sometime later and says to Nanda-nandana, “I went to search for flowers and found the Vraja-devīs making a dress for You embroidered with flowers. They want to give You flower earrings, ornaments, and flowers.”Kṛṣṇa replies, “I will decorate and serve them.”“If You first accept their loving presentations,” Vicakṣaṇa replies, “then You will realize how they will be pleased and will be able to serve them in return.”Kṛṣṇa’s desires reflect in Rādhārānī’s heart and She instructs Her mañjarīs how to fulfill those desires. They then make new outfits with silk, pearls, flowers, and jewels. When Kṛṣṇa wears these clothes, He feels that Śrīmatī Rādhārānī is directly present with Him. Śrīmatī Rādhārānī’s love and the love of the sakhīs and mañjarīs is present in whatever they touch.nānā-puṣpaiḥ kvanita-madhupair devi sambhāvitābhir mālābhis tad-ghusṛṇa-vilasat-kāma-citrālibhiścarājad-dvāre sapadi madanānandadābhikhya-gehe malli-jālaiḥ śaśi-mukhi kadā talpam ākalpayāmiVilāpa-kusumāñjali 71O moon-faced one, when will I arrange a bed of jasmine flowers for You in Madanānandada-kuñja, which has a beautiful gate and is decorated with wonderful pictures of Cupid, drawn in kuṁkum, and garlands of many flowers, surrounded by buzzing bees.The glories of this Madanānanda-kuñja are explained herein. It is located near Pāvana-sarovara, not far from Nanda-bhavana. Kṛṣṇa goes alone to that kuñja after waking in the morning, and rests for awhile in the arms of Śrīmatī and the Vraja-devīs.Dāsa Gosvāmī prays, “O Devī, sweetly singing bumblebees move flower to flower, collecting honey. Hearing their singing, You open the door of the kuñja and look out expectantly, hoping for Kṛṣṇa to appear at any moment. I will decorate the doorway of that kuñja with draping strands of flowers and will arrange a bed in that forest grove for Your pleasure.”In the morning, the sakhīs and mañjarīs come with honey, drinks, flowers, and many offerings to cook with Rādhārānī at Nanda-bhavana. From a distance, Citrā-devī, who is most expert at making paintings, shows Śrīmatī Rādhārānī with her enchanting art where Kṛṣṇa is and what He is doing. Then Śrīmatī Rādhārānī arranges for His service.Kṛṣṇa gets up in the morning, having stayed awake the whole night and therefore needing more rest. There is a special kuñja-kuṭīra arranged for Him to hide in and continue resting after He formally wakes in Nanda-bhavana.He comes there by a hidden path. He disappears from the cowshed where He was milking the cows and enters this kuñja. Rādhārānī and the Vraja-devīs take Him in their arms. They massage Him and fan Him, and He interacts with each of them personally, resting His head on the knee of one, holding hands with another, and placing His arm around the shoulders of another. The hearts and bodies of the Vraja-devīs are more soft, delicate, beautiful and lovely than any flower. Each gopī makes her lap like a bed for Kṛṣṇa to rest on. Kṛṣṇa rests in Madanānandada-kuñja in the morning.śrī-rūpa-mañjari-karārcita-pāda-padma- goṣṭhendra-nandana-bhujārpita-mastakāyāḥhā modataḥ kanaka-gauri padāravinda- samvāhanāni śanakais tava kiṁ kariṣye Vilāpa-kusumāñjali 72O golden one, when will I happily and gently massage Your lotus feet, along with Rūpa Mañjarī, as You rest Your head in the lap of the prince of Vraja, and He massages Your head?Śrīmatī Rādhārānī comes from Varsānā and rests with Kṛṣṇa in Madanānanda-kuñja. She lies down, and Rūpa Mañjarī massages Her feet and soothes them with cool kuñkuma and mehindi. As Rūpa Mañjarī serves the feet of Śrīmatī Rādhārānī, she signals to Rati Mañjarī to come forward and massage as well.Sometimes, if He has permission, Kṛṣṇa sits with Śrīmatī Rādhārānī in His lap and as She rests on His knee, He strokes Her head. Rūpa Mañjarī massages the feet of the Divine Couple with her soft pleasing hands and calls Rati Mañjarī forward to assist her.Dāsa Gosvāmī prays, “When will Rūpa Mañjarī call me forward for the service of Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa?”The name ‘Rūpa Mañjarī’ means that with her beauty, she conquers and controls the hearts of all. There is no darkness in her heart. She is always bright, light, and golden.Dāsa Gosvāmī prays, “When will that day come when, after serving Śrīmatī Rādhārānī and Śrī Kṛṣṇa, I will be able to serve Rūpa Mañjarī herself? When will she give me permission for this? How else will I receive proper training?”govardhanādri-nikaṭe mukuṭena narma- līlā-vidagdha-śirasāṁ madhusūdanenadāna-cchalena bhavatīm avarudhyamānāṁ drakṣyāmi kiṁ bhru-kuṭi-darpita-netra-yugmāmVilāpa-kusumāñjali 73When will I see You, Your eyebrows knitted and Your eyes burning with pride, as Madhusūdana, the crown on the heads of expert jesters, stops You near Govardhana Hill on the pretext of collecting a toll?Kṛṣṇa comes with His sakhās to the foot of Govardhana and takes tax from the Vraja-devīs. He demands, “Give Me tax!Then He says, “Actually, I am not a tax collector. I don’t take anything by force. That is not right. It is not sweet for Me. Please give Me some charity.”Then a bit later He says, “No, no, charity is also not good. I am not a poor person or a beggar. Please give Me dāna, donation. By giving dāna, you yourselves will be benefited and become happy. If you give anything happily, the benefit will multiply ten times. Therefore, give Me dāna. If you don’t give Me dāna, you will become a poor, dirty, narrow-minded beggar. I am great. Everyone knows this. Therefore if you give Me a donation, then My own greatness will come to you, and your hearts will be clean. You will become fair, fresh, and full of goodness. I am a qualified person. If you give dāna to bad people, they will make you dirty and contaminated. You will suffer life after life. But by giving a donation to those who are qualified, it is very good for you. The best thing to offer is yourself, so if you offer yourself as a donation to a person with all good qualities, it is best.”With these words, Kṛṣṇa tries to capture Śrīmatī Rādhārānī. He says, “Give everything to Me. Then I will accept and help you. If you don’t give yourselves to Me, then you will be forced to give yourselves to cheaters. They don’t have any strength to help you. Anything you have should be given to Me. I am a qualified and very powerful person.”With such clever words, Kṛṣṇa attempts to take everything the gopīs possess as dāna. He is not interested in anything small. With His crooked eyes, He scans for any particle of love, and is not happy until He receives every last drop.Dāsa Gosvāmī prays, “I long to watch Kṛṣṇa’s sweet playful pastimes with the Vraja-devīs.” (Click on the Title to see more)
O Devī, while You are on Your way to the home of the king of Vraja, to cook for Mādhava, every hair on Your body stands erect in joy and Your gait falters. Will my eyes ever attain this vision? (Vilapa-kusumanjali)Śrīmatī Rādhārānī, the most excellent and famous cook in all existence, because of the earnest entreaty of Yaśodā Mātā, daily goes to cook for Kṛṣṇa at Nanda-bhavana.Once, Durvāsā Ṛṣi came to the palace in Varsānā and said, “Vṛṣabhānu Mahārāja, I am very hungry.”“I will quickly arrange whatever you like,” Vṛṣabhānu Mahārāja said.“I don’t desire your cooking or the cooking of your wife. You are not pure. You share your life with everyone.”“Then what should I do?” “Do you have a daughter?” “Yes.”“Your daughter will cook.”“She is only a baby, how can She cook?”“You are trying to cheat me. Call Her at once!”Vṛṣabhānu Mahārāja brought Rādhārānī in his arms to Durvāsā Ṛṣi.“O Lāḍlī,” Durvāsā Ṛṣi asked, “I know You are an expert cook. All the demigods including Brahmā know of Your special abilities and glorify Your super-excellent qualities. Won’t You cook something for me?”Rādhārānī smiled and said, “Yes.”“Please cook something quickly. I have not eaten for what seems like ages.”“What would you like?”“I especially like ksīra,” Durvāsā Ṛṣi replied, “and I also like mālpuā so much.”Śrīmatī Rādhārānī cooked sweet rice and mālpuā. She didn’t make only one or two pieces of mālpuā. Durvāsā Ṛṣi doesn’t eat one or two grams, a hundred grams, or even a hundred kilos. His appetite is immeasurable. Śrīmatī knew this. She cooked so much sweet rice, it was like the kusuma-sarovara lake, and She made so many mālpuās, they became a mountain like Girirāja Govardhana. How did She cook? All the sakhīs and mañjarīs are like Her expansions; they all know Her desire. They helped arrange everything. If Rādhārānī looks and touches anything, this is enough. So many things are arranged.Durvāsā Ṛṣi sat down at eleven or twelve o’clock in the night and began eating. From midnight until early morning he ate, saying inbetween platefuls, “Bring more, bring more.” He had more and more desire for this mahā-prasāda. He ate a plate, yawned, and then ate more, without taking any rest. By morning everything was finished. Then he said, “Now I am happy. Now I am satisfied.”His name is Durvāsā Ṛṣi. He checks if one has good or bad desires, vāsāna. If your desire is good, he will give you a passing certificate, otherwise if you have bad desires and moods, he will destroy you.After eating, Durvāsā Ṛṣi gave a boon to Rādhikā: “This daughter of Vṛṣabhānu Mahārāja is siddha, perfect. Anything She touches becomes supremely auspicious and full of nectar. If anyone tastes Her cooking, or hears Her glories, remembers Her, offers anything to Her, and then takes that, he will achieve love for God and bhakti-rasa. By once tasting that rasa, he will have no desire for other rasas. And if anyone is inimical to her, he will be destroyed.”In this verse, Dāsa Gosvāmī prays to accompany Śrīmatījī on Her way to Nanda-bhavana. All the sakhīs and mañjarīs walk with Śrīmatī Rādhārānī from Varsānā to Nandagrāma. Many sakhīs and mañjarīs come from different places in Vraja to meet with Śrīmatī Rādhārānī at Prema-sarovara, before proceeding to Nandagrāma. None of the gopīs come empty-handed. They bring many items, arranged at their homes for service in Rādhārānī’s cooking.pārśva-dvaye lalitayātha viśākhayāca tvāṁ sarvataḥ parijanaiś ca paraiḥ parītāmpaścān mayā vibhṛta-bhaṅgura-madhya-bhāgaṁ kiṁ rūpa-mañjarir iyaṁ pathi neṣyatīha Vilāpa-kusumāñjali 59When will Rūpa Mañjarī lead You on the path with Lalitā and Viśākhā at Your two sides, Your friends all around, and me holding Your delicate waist from behind?On the way to Nandagrāma, Lalitā and Viśākhā walk alongside Rādhārānī. Here, Dāsa Gosvāmī prays to walk behind holding Śrīmatījī’s waist. Rūpa Mañjarī walks in front with Rādhikā, while carrying many things. Absorbed in his internal form as Rati Mañjarī, Dāsa Gosvāmī sees Rūpa with a heavy load and thinks, “I will go forward and request Rūpa Mañjarī, ‘Please give me something to carry.’ ” Rati Mañjarī doesn’t want Rūpa Mañjarī to feel the slightest disturbance.Kṛṣṇa understands everything. He is still resting in Nanda-bhavana, but by His desire, many bulls, camels, and elephants come to help bring paraphernalia from Varsānā to Nanda-bhavana. They offer praṇāma to Śrīmatī Rādhārānī, bending down on their knees. The elephants clean the pathway with their tusks and sprinkle the road with flowers. Then the animals carry the items for cooking. The animals of Vraja also have service tendency and don’t merely eat, sleep, and wander about, enjoying the love and affection of Kṛṣṇa. They have pure knowledge and service tendency.hamvārair iha gavām api ballavānāṁ kolāhalair vividha-vandi-kalāvatāṁ taiḥsamrājate priyatayā vraja-rāja-sūnor govardhanād api gurur vraja-vanditād yaḥprāptāṁ nija-praṇayinī-prakaraiḥ parītāṁ nandīśvaraṁ vraja-mahendra-mahālayaṁ taṁdūre nirīkṣya muditā tvaritaṁ dhaniṣṭhā tvām ānayiṣyati kadā praṇayair mamāgre Vilāpa-kusumāñjali 60–61Surrounded by Your affectionate gopī friends, You arrive at Nandiśvara, which is filled with the mowing of the cows, the shouts of the cowherders and the different songs of minstrels, and which is dearer to the prince of Vraja than even Govardhana. When will I then see Dhaniṣṭhā, who has seen you coming from afar, quickly and lovingly take You inside, as I follow behind You?Nandiśvara Hill is extremely dear to Nanda-nandana. The Vrajavāsīs pray and offer respect to Girirāja Govardhana, but an even sweeter and important place is Nandiśvara Hill. Kṛṣṇa dearly loves Nandiśvara and always resides there. Kṛṣṇa sometimes go to Govardhana and performs pastimes there, accepting the service of Girirāja, but Nandiśvara is always able to serve Kṛṣṇa and His associates.Dāsa Gosvāmī prays, “When will I go to Nandiśvara and pray to him for service. But only service is not enough. If I have no position there, my mind will be disturbed by asat-sāṅga.”Sat-saṅga doesn’t only mean to stay with sādhus for some time and then go some place else. One must continuously stay with sādhus, with love for them, not by hook or crook. If I have a loving relation with the sādhus, they will give me a place to stay.Dāsa Gosvāmī prays, “I will not stay for selfish purposes, nor will I try to acquire and possess any place. Any place I am present, I will keep it only for Śrīmatījī and the sakhīs and will endeavor to serve them there.”Dhanisṭhā is very dear to Śrīmatī Rādhārānī. She is her beloved sakhī. Mother Yaśodā gives her great respect. Dhaniṣṭhā serves in Nanda-bhavana, dividing all responsibilities so that everything can be accomplished properly.Dāsa Gosvāmī prays, “When will Dhaniṣṭhā take me to Vrajeśvarī Yaśodā, and say, ‘This Lālī has so much love for service.’ ”On one side Lalitā is present, and Viśākhā is on the other side, but this Rati is waiting behind. Whenever Dhaniṣṭhā calls her forth, she does everything on her instruction.At the time of smaraṇa-daśā, internally meditating on one’s perfected state and form, and going near one’s worshipable Kṛṣṇa, all Kṛṣṇa’s associates are present there. They will instruct you, “This is your service. This is your place.” There will be no need for any subtle hint or indication. One will understand which direction to go and how to serve. The path will be clear, without any obstacles. Don’t think this is speculation or if you go there you won’t know what to do, or how to engage your time. It is not like this. The flow of inspiration and mercy is very powerful. It will sweep you up.Many people are in Russia, America, Africa, Australia, Europe, or India. When they meet Gurudeva and join his mission, at first they don’t know what to do or what their service will be. But automatically, by Gurudeva’s inspiration, they take their own places and responsibilities and perform their specific service very seriously. Gradually their taste for service will increase more and more and there will be no need for any permit, permission, advice, instruction, or company officer to give one duty and sign one in, checking if one is performing one’s service properly and doing the proper amount of hours. This is only as an example. In the eternal world, there is a powerful force, inspiring one to serve. (click on the Title to see more)
At the time of chanting, we hold each tulasī bead in our mālā, like catching the feet of the Vraja-devīs and praying to them as we serve internally. Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa and all the Vraja-devīs are present there while we chant Hare Kṛṣṇa. If we only chant Rādhe Kṛṣṇa, Rādhe...
Young people dream of what they will be when they grow up. They have high expectations, and think, “I will be a big barrister,” or “I will be a famous architect,” or “I will be a lawyer practicing in the Supreme Court.” They have big hopes from their childhood. As ordinary people have greed for ordinary achievements, we must develop spiritual greed for extraordinary, spiritual achievements. If we have no spiritual greed or desire, nor any hope to achieve any aspiration, our life is only like an empty shell. We are not really human; we are impotent and like a stone or inert object.People cheat others, saying, “Mānasī-sevā is speculation.” When a baby is born, after some time it becomes natural for the baby to ask questions. They soak up information. Even before a baby goes to school, he starts inquiring from his parents about all kinds of things, saying, “Mama, what is this? Papa, what is that?”If we don’t go and pray to the Guru-varga for spiritual instruction, if we have no scent of greed, how can we be called students of the spiritual science? Are we humans? Are we trunks of wood or chunks of stone? Who are we? The soul is the part and parcel of the Supreme Soul. It has consciousness, but in its perverted state, this consciousness is now absorbed in dull matter. When a ray of divine mercy touches the soul by earnest prayer, then greed arises for attaining the pure state of consciousness in love with the Supreme.Dāsa Gosvāmī is Rati Mañjarī in the spiritual world. She is sevonmukhi, always eager to serve the Divine Couple. This tendency is born naturally out of her love. She prays, “O Śrīmatī Rādhike, I am Your small maidservant. I will make a flower seat for You in the forest of Vṛndāvana. You will sit there happily and worship the sun. You will offer argha and other paraphernalia to the sun. You are sumukhi-sevonmukhi, always serving and teaching others how to serve.“I will make a jeweled seat for You. And from there, You can serve Mitradeva with the sakhīs. The sun is coming! He rises early. But He will take some time to reach here, therefore we must prepare for His arrival. O sumukhi, sevonmukhi! Be pleased with this dāsī and give her inspiration and instructions for service. This dāsī of Yours will arrange everything for the service of the Sun-god. When the sun-like Kṛṣṇa arises and comes here and accepts Your presentations, then the arrangement made by Your sakhīs will be successful. I will prepare all things for that worship. I have no good intelligence; I don’t know what is needed to perfect this worship. With Your inspiration, I will go to the sakhīs and mañjarīs and they will guide me in this service.”vraja-pura-pati-rājñyā ājñayā miṣṭam annaṁ bahu-vidham ati-yatnāt svena pakvaṁvarorusapadi nija-sakhīnāṁ mad-vidhānāṁ ca hastair madhumathana-nimittaṁ kiṁ tvayā sannidhāpyam Vilāpa-kusumāñjali 46O lovely-thighed one, when, employing the hands of Your friends such as myself, will You place before the killer of the Madhu demon the many delicious foods You very carefully cooked by the order of the queen of Vraja?“O Rādhike! On the request of Yaśodā Mātā, You arrange and cook many sweets, such as halavā, laḍḍu, kṣīra-sāgara, and kṣīri. I am Your Rati Mañjarī. I will take something for Kṛṣṇa and give it to Yaśodā Mātā, saying, ‘O Yaśodā Mātā, please give this to Kṛṣṇa. Śrīmatījī has made this with Her own hands. It is very tasty, sweet, and helpful for Kṛṣṇa.’ ”Yaśodā Mātā gives the gopīs the chance to serve Kṛṣṇa. Rādhārānī cooks with Lalitā and all the sakhīs and mañjarīs in the kitchen of Nandagrāma. And She gives what She cooks to Rati Mañjarī, saying, “Go give this to Yaśodā Mātā.”Why does Śrīmatī Rādhārānī entrust this offering to Rati Mañjarī? Because anything Rati Mañjarī gives is completely filled with love. She is none other than the personified form of Śrīmatī Rādhārānī’s affection for Kṛṣṇa. Rati Mañjarī knows the process of offering the preparations. (click on the Title to read more)
Once, as Śrī Bihārī dāsjī was carrying Śrīla Jagannātha dāsa Bābājī Mahārāja on a pathway, a devotee gave Bābājī Mahārāja one rupee and Bābājī Mahārāja gave it to Bihārīdāsa to keep. Two or three miles ahead, Śrīla Bābājī Mahārāja suddenly told Bihārī Dāsa to return it. After arriving at his Kuṭī, he called that devotee and gave him back the rupee, saying, “Brother, keep your rupee, I heard that you have many rupees. I don’t know how you can tolerate the biting sting of so many rupees, I am not able to tolerate the sting of even one rupee.”Śrīla Bābājī Mahārāja’s Instructions to Those Unqualified for the Path of RāgaŚrīla Jagannātha dāsa Bābājī Mahārāja always gave instructions to perform hari-bhajana through one’s body, mind, and words. Some people among those with the desire to be his followers, taking loin cloth, or the dress of a bābājī, thought that they would now not have to perform fatiguing physical work as householders do, for they were now bheka-dhārīs, (wearing the dress of renunciation). Consequently, they simply circulated their beads without care, trying to complete their regulated number of rounds by any means, thinking that then their daily activities would be finished. However, Śrīla Jagannātha dāsa Bābājī Mahārāja mercifully engaged all those nāma-āparādhis in exhausting physical activities for the service of Kṛṣṇa. Without keeping one’s senses absorbed in the service of Viṣṇu and the Vaiṣṇavas, Śrī Kṛṣṇa’s names will not manifest on the tongue, and one will not get the qualification to perform Śrī Kṛṣṇa’s names. For as long as one’s senses are present with the body and their sense objects, as well as those persons related to the body, until then the living entity will be attached to sense enjoyment, this is certain. “I am Bhagavān’s servant”— situated in this mood, one will have possessiveness towards the objects related to Bhagavān, thus one will engage his own body and the objects related to the body in the service of Bhagavān and the devotees, and the tendency of love and possessiveness will be towards them. Seeing the unperfected and foolish persons laziness in regards to Śrī Kṛṣṇa anuśīlana, for they were busily engaged in their own sense enjoyment, and to stop them from proceeding on the pathway to hell, Śrīla Bābājī Mahārāja engaged them in honest hari-bhajana, in such a way that finally their consciousness would be cleansed and they would obtain the qualification to perform śrī-kṛṣṇa-anuśīlana.Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura Meets Śrīla Jagannātha dāsa Bābājī MahārājaIn the month of śrāvaṇa 1880, when Śrīla Jagannātha dāsa Bābājī Mahārāja was staying in the kuñja of Śrī Rūpa dāsa Bābājī Mahārāja, Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura came to the kuñja of Śrī Rādhā Ramaṇa Vasu, with the intent of having daṛśana of Śrīdhāma Vṛndāvana. When Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura was searching for some rare scriptures, he came to the kuñja of Śrī Rūpa dāsa Bābājī Mahārāja, and had darśana of Śrīla Jagannātha dāsa Bābājī Mahārāja for the first time. The pastime of the eternal vrajavāsī guru and disciple meeting together in the Vraja of this world was manifest. In this place, Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura authored the ‘dāśa ślokī’ in the name of Śrī Nimbāditya.Along with hearing the powerful hari-kathā of Śrīla Jagannātha dāsa Bābājī Mahārāja, Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura realized him to be a great bhajanānandī-mahāpuruṣa, and offered himself for all time at his lotus feet. Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura realized that the actual result of his pilgrimage had been obtained:“tīrtha-phala sādhu saṅga, sādhu saṅge antaraṅga, śrī kṛṣṇa bhajana manohara”[The actual result of going to the holy places is to obtain sādhu-saṅga, because in sadhu-saṅga one gets ‘antaraṅga,’ or the opportunity of receiving confidential instructions for Śrī Kṛṣṇa-bhajana, which steal the mind.]Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura’s travel to Śrīdhāma Vṛndāvana was successful. In the same way that Śrīman Mahāprabhu spoke the feelings of His heart when He had darśana of Śrī Īśvarapurī in Gayā, saying:prabhu bale gayā yātrā saphala āmārayatra kṣane dekhilāṅ caraṇa tomārasaṁsāra-samudra haite uddhāraha moreeī āmi deha samarpilāṅ tomārekṛṣṇa-pāda-padmera amṛta-rasa pānaāmāre karāo tumi ei cāhi dānaŚrī Caitanya Bhāgavata, Ādi 17.50-52Receiving the darṣana of Śrī Īśvara Purī’s lotus feet, Śrī Gaursundara said, “That moment I obtained the darśana of your beautiful lotus feet, My pilgrimage to Gayā was successful. Please save Me from the ocean of material existence, I have offered My body unto you! Please make Me drink the transcendental nectar of Śrī Kṛṣṇa’s lotus feet; this is all I beg from you!”In this same way, Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura’s mind became agitated, and prayers appeared on his tongue. Seeing a person so learned and well versed in the scriptures, with such a powerful natural enthusiasm to preach śrī-nāma-saṇkīrtana as practiced and preached by Śrīman Mahāprabhu, Śrīla Jagannātha dāsa Bābājī Mahāśaya was pleased, and encouraged Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura to more widely and strongly preach śrī-gaura-nāma, śrī-gaura-dhāma and śrī-gaura-kāma (Gaura’s desires) throughout the world.Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura returned from Śrī Vṛndavān and began preaching extensively to fulfill the heart’s desire of Śrīla Jagannātha dāsa Bābājī Mahāśaya. If one reads the autobiography of Ṭhākura Bhaktivinoda, one will understand from that time how he greatly preached the holy name, pure bhakti, and gave many eloquent lectures related to dharma in many places throughout Bengal.
Srila Gurudeva followed Siva-ratri. There was so much fighting about this in the matha even in Mathura, where Srila Gurudeva was in charge. His Godbrothers would become upset. I would cook on Siva-ratri, but they wanted there to be rice, dal, sabji and everything. They would not accept Srila Gurudeva’s idea and they complained about his following of vrata on that day.Srila Gurudeva said to them, “Who is Siva? Do you accept Siva as separate from Visnu? That is a nama-aparadha. Sada Siva is directly Lord Visnu’s expansion. However, if you accept Siva as equal to Visnu, this is also nama-aparadha. If you accept Siva as an independent controller than this is aparadha, but at the same time, he is not separate from Visnu. In the Brahma Samhita, it is stated:ksiram yatha dadhi-vikara-visesa-yogatsanjayate na hi tatah prthag asti hetohyah sambhutam api tatha samupaiti karyadgovindam adi-purusam tam aham bhajami“Here it is described that, milk turns into yogurt by a transforming agent, but yogurt cannot again become milk. In the same way, Lord Visnu manifest as Lord Siva to perform a specific function. So he is an expansion of Lord Visnu, but Siva he is not equal to Visnu and he cannot become Visnu just like milk can become yogurt but yogurt cannot become milk. It is a great offense to disrespect Lord Siva and one should certainly perform fast on his day of Siva-ratri.”Srila Gurudeva had to deal with so much disturbance amongst his Godbrothers over this matter. These Godbrothers, of course, did not include Srila Vamana Gosvami Maharaja and Srila Trivikram Gosvami Maharaja, but a collection of people who were not so serious about performing bhajana.Srila Gurudeva later wrote a book titled Siva-tattva and he had it distributed freely to different mathas. He said, “By disrespecting the different demigods one commits nama-aparadha and invites calamity. If one makes this offence he will never attain pure bhakti. Those people who offend Lord Siva will surely suffer. Just look at what happened to Daksa-prajapati, and look at what happened to Pusa and Brghu. Pusa’s teeth were shattered and Bhrgu’s mustache was ripped off. Daksa’s head was replaced with the head of a goat!
Vilāpa-kusumāñjali 8 O Devī, please rescue this unfortunate person drowning in an ocean of pain. Place him on the strong boat of Your mercy and carry him to the wonderful realm of Your lotus feet.He says, “O Rādhe! I am not merely sad, I have fallen in the ocean of distress where I am burning in separation. I don’t know how to come out. Be merciful upon me, send a boat to help and carry me across this ocean to Your lotus feet. They are my all and all. Please bring me close to Your lotus feet. Otherwise, for millions of lives I take shelter of ordinary people, but they don’t accept me. They only kick me. O Rādhike, You are my life and soul. Please give me shelter. This will be my permanent post and service. Otherwise, I have no power.”Rādhārānī may say, “Oh, why are you sad? Why are you disturbed? Why are you crying?”“O Devī! Before, I had no knowledge that this world is a prison. Many cruel animals are present who are always cheating me, stealing my life. They appear like friends but they only steal my life, time, and energy. They make me perform bad karma, sending me away from bhakti and God.“By the mercy of Caitanya Mahāprabhu and Guru-pāda-padma, I have realized this and come here. Without Your mercy it is not possible to cross over this mundane world. I cannot cross beyond this attachment. If I have no protection and shelter, then I would be forced to go back. If You don’t give taste and relation, then I would have to go to others and work constantly for their pleasure.“I have no shelter. Without You I am very small. Your lotus feet are very wonderful. Many millions and millions of siddha-sevakas are present there.“Please give me a small place there as well. I will sit by Your lotus feet and Your sevakas will teach and guide me.”In the ninth verse Dāsa Gosvāmī prays: tvad-alokana-kalāhi-daṁśair eva mṛtaṁ janamtvat-padābja-milal-lakṣa-bheṣajair devi jīvayaVilāpa-kusumāñjali 9 O Devī, with the medicine of the red lac from Your lotus feet, please bring back to life this person now dead from the bites of the black snake of not seeing You. “O Devī, I can’t see You. The serpent of time is stealing away my life. It bites me and injects me with poison. I can’t protect myself. By its poison I am suffering and feeling so much pain. O Devī! Tat-padābjam, Your lotus feet are like life-giving medicine. Please give me life and strength, so that I may return to You. Now I am wounded, as if dead by the influence of mahā-kāla. Poisonous snakes always come and bite me. Babies go to their mother and father, who take them in their lap, and kiss and play with them. With all types of love and affection, relatives poison us and keep us disconnected from our soul and the Supreme Soul. These family members are the soldiers of time.“O Devī, Your lotus feet are covered with reddish kuṁkum. Please give me a particle of kuṁkum from Your feet. This medicine will cure the material disease and bestow anurāga.”Caitanya Mahāprabhu covered Himself with this anurāga. In Anurāga-vallari, Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura wrote that in the early morning Śrīmatī Rādhārānī watched many pulina-kanyās going to collect dry wood and cow dung. They saw Kṛṣṇa’s foosteps and kuṁkum on the grass. Where did this come from? The Vraja-devīs put Kṛṣṇa’s feet on their breasts that are smeared with kuṁkum and that kuṁkum becomes imprinted on the grass when Kṛṣṇa walks through the forest. The pulina-kanyās place this kuṁkum on their heads and chests. Śrīmatī sees this and says, “How much love they have for this Kṛṣṇa!”Caitanya-candra wore cloth the reddish color of this anurāga. He said, “I always keep the Vraja-devīs’ footdust with Me. This footdust is their anurāga.”This anurāga color is medicine that treats our material condition. How can hṛd-roga, lust, go? Dāsa Gosvāmī Prabhu says, “If you take a little bit of this footdust and smear it on your body and pray to that dust, then your hṛd-roga will go away. The serpents of time will no longer bite you. Even if you can’t bring Her feet directly in your heart, if you can collect a little of this kuṁkum and place it in your heart, then that will cure you and bring you to Vraja-dhama.”Some people say, “I have no time, when can I chant? I will chant later. I will serve later.” This is the poisonous effect of kāla-sarpa, the serpents of time. If you want to be saved from these serpents, then you must take shelter of the Vraja-devis’ foot dust.vande nanda-vraja-strīṇāṁ pāda-reṇum abhīkṣṇaśaḥyāsāṁ hari-kathodgīrṇaṁ punāti bhuvana-trayam Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 10.47.63 I constantly glorify the dust of the feet of the women of Nanda’s cowherd pastures. Their chanting of the activities of Śrī Kṛṣṇa purifies the entire universe. Brahmā and Uddhava pray like this. This dust is available. Why don’t you take it? You don’t have the desire. How can desire come? For that desire you must worship Śrīmatī Rādhārānī’s lotus feet.Śrīla Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura sings: rādhikā-caraṇa-renu, bhūṣaṇa koriyā tanuanāyāse pābe giridhārīrādhikā-caraṇāśraya, je kore se mahāśayatāre moi jāo bolihārī Ornament your body with the dust of Śrīmatī Rādhikā’s lotus feet and you will easily attain Giridhārī. I congratulate such a great soul who takes shelter of Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī’s lotus feet.jaya jaya rādhā-nāma vṛndāvana jāra dhāmakṛṣṇa-sukha vilāsera nidhiheno rādhā guṇa gāna, na sunilo mora kānavañcito korilo more vidhi All glories, all glories to She whose name is Rādhā, whose divine abode is Vṛndāvana, and who is a treasury of pastimes that bring joy to Kṛṣṇa. Alas! If my ears have not heard Rādhā’s glories, then destiny has cheated me. Everything we sing, we sing without desire to accept. We sing, pray, and pass our time, and then run another way. Why? We have no desire to accept this.Dāsa Gosvāmī Prabhu says, “Color yourself from top to bottom with this kuṁkum. Then nothing else can touch or disturb you.”If we don’t read the Gosvāmīs’ books, like this Vilāpa-kusumāñjali, how can we understand what process the Gosvāmīs left for us? How can we cross māyā? How can we collect bhakti-rasa? Without this, our lives pass uselessly. If we only cry and think about the negative, what benefit will come to us? We accept nothing positive. We will be weak if we take no food and have no rasa. Vaidhī-mārga is not useless, but who can actually follow all rules and regulations? Those who have anurāga follow all rules and regulations naturally. They come everyday to maṅgala-āratī to serve in niśānta-līlā. There is no need to bang on their doors and shout, “Wake up!” They naturally follow everything with anurāga. Vaidhī-mārga followers do everything by force. If sometimes they are sick, then how can they follow? This anurāga is the only thing necessary for strength in bhajana. devi te caraṇa-padma-dāsikāṁ viprayoga-bhara-dāva-pāvakaiḥdahyamānatara-kāya-ballavīṁ jīvaya kṣaṇa-nirīkṣaṇāmṛtaiḥVilāpa-kusumāñjali 10 O Devī, with the nectar of a moment’s glance, please restore the life of this maidservant of Your lotus feet, who now burns in the great forest-fire of separation from You. What does Devī mean? In the transcendental realm of Vṛndāvana-dhāma, You control Śrī Kṛṣṇa with Your over-world-power-love and keep Him always near You, thus You are Devī.“O Devī, I am burning; my body, mind, and senses—everything is burning. Everywhere I look there is only fire, dryness, and ashes. Please cool me with the nectar from Your lotus feet. Śiva Ṭhākura sits in a crematorium and smears his body with ashes, saying, ‘In this world there is only fire and ash, fire and ash.’ O Devī, this world is a forest-fire and my body is like a burning creeper. I am a very small dāsī at Your lotus feet. Kṛpā kaṭākṣa bhājanam—please just once grace me with Your merciful glance. If You don’t look at me and take care of me, then everyone will come with fire and attack me, saying, ‘Hey, don’t do this, do what I am telling, follow me.’ The government, educators, parents, friends, and the so-called gurus and ācāryas—everyone in this world smashes us and squeezes out our life. They like to take all our time and life. But they don’t say, ‘Follow this line of the Gosvāmīs; this is good for you.’ ”When a goat or pig is young and healthy, everyone is ready to check, “How much does it weigh? How tasty will it be?” The fire of peoples’ desires burns us. People are always ready to attack and digest us.Dāsa Gosvāmī says, “Kṛṣṇa is transcendental. He is in my heart, but I can’t meet with Him because I am surrounded by fire. How can I cross this fire and go to meet with Kṛṣṇa? It is not possible. I am burning in my desire-fire, lust-fire, anger-fire, and so many other fires. I collect fire from all others; they give me this by force. Also, I am sentimental and sensitive—this is one fire. Even worse is the fire of pratiṣṭhā, greed for name and fame. O Devī, if these fires aren’t vanquished, I will not be able to cross beyond this fearsome world and reach You. I have been burning, burning, burning for millions of lives. Now I have only a little time left. I cannot tolerate this torment any longer. Without Your merciful glance, I will be burnt to ashes and destroyed. Please give me Your kṛpā-kaṭākṣa-bhājanam, without which I cannot cross over this fearsome world.“This body that You gave is always demanding attention and wants me to be its slave. It is a vortex of fire in which I am always burning. I desire to engage my body always as an instrument of Your service. But these fires are burning me and keep me from serving You. In a forest there are many big trees. Sometimes, when wind rubs them against each other, fire is generated. This fire burns the whole forest down. Similarly, mundane people have fire and they steal us away from bhakti and bhajana. This is like a forest-fire. How can I protect myself from the fires of this world? I don’t know. Please help me.“Your darśana is not possible for me. I can’t see you, but You can see me. Please give me Your glance of mercy, otherwise I cannot cross over this world and go to You.” svapne ‘pi kiṁ sumukhi te caraṇāmbujāta- rājat-parāga-paṭavāsa-vibhūṣaṇenaśobhāṁ parām atitarām ahahottamāṅaṁ bibhrad bhaviṣyati kadā mama sārtha-nāmaVilāpa-kusumāñjali 11 O beautiful-faced one, when, even in a dream, will I, by decorating my head with the splendid perfumed powder of Your lotus feet, attain the goal of my life? (Click on the Title to see more)
Today is Vijaya Ekadasi. Sastra, the Guruvarga, Acarya, and the Vaisnavas distribute many transcendental jewels to the residents of this world. Only very lucky people can accept, receive, and collect these transcendental jewels. These jewels contain priceless instructions that on properly being followed will lead to the sadhaka quickly attaining everlasting benefit. Anybody who engages in austerities, in tapa and japa, may attain their desired fruit of liberation in due course of time; but this is not possible in Kali Yuga.Pracinanan bhajanam atulam duskaramsrnvato me—in previous times, the Rsis and Maharsis engaged in such excruciating austerities! They performed such strong austerities; these austerities cannot be replicated in Kali Yuga. Mostly, the so-called sadhus of Kali Yuga who are conditioned souls always engage themselves in having buildings and houses built them. They amass much property for their own enjoyment. They will then claim to perform bhajan inside these buildings. Before, they left everything and entered the forest, or went to a hill-station, a place near a waterfall, or they may have even entered a cave. Tolerating the scorching heat of the summer and the biting cold of the winter, they resided in these places in a carefree manner.But now, equipped with all modern amenities, they claim to perform sadhana. They now have all forms of enjoyment and recreation present with them. They unconditionally gifted themselves with these facilities on the pretext of gifting them to God. But, the real sadhus remain unaffected by these conveniences and facilities; they have no relation, connection, and attachment to them. They are nirapeksa; they are neutral. They unconditionally offer all they possess to the lotus feet of the Lord. Mahaprabhu has said:Nirapeksa na hoilo dharma raksa na jayaThe sadhus have everything, but they are never attached to anything they possess. Everything they have is meant for the service of the Lord; for the service of the Guruvarga. They are of the conviction, “What we possess is not meant for us.” How can this position of complete surrender come? How is it possible to achieve this mood? Srila Prabhupada Sarasvati Thakura has kindly arranged for a solution to this situation. He has made this position accessible to all conditioned souls. He has also managed for all forms of help to the conditioned souls. He arranged for all the souls to engage in Nama-sankirtan and bhajan throughout the day. Conversely, from morning to evening, the hapless conditioned souls cannot complete chanting even sixteen rounds. They chant Guru-mantra haphazardly, according to their discretion. They cannot offer their puspanjali and obeisances to Tulasi-devi; they cannot perform her arati and parikrama also. It is impossible for them to respect any Vaisnavas. Why? The parents offer their children all kinds toys to play with. Similarly, Maya-devi has offered many instruments and toys to the conditioned souls. All detrimental influences are present in Maya-devi presentations.But, by accepting her real mercy, then despite being surrounded by her alluring presentations, the sincere devotees will be disconnected from her overwhelming influence and all of their attachment and connection will be directed towards God. The nirapeksa devotees are very serious, lucky, and fortunate. They are the most serious people in this world. Though they may have everything; except for Krsna and His service, they have nothing. Is something better than nothing? No! They only possess the wealth of service to Krsna, hence, they are called sadhus. They are attached and engaged to pracinanan bhajanam atulam duskaramsrnvato me.
Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī says, “Aho! These senses and family are so attractive. Young age! Wealth! An opulent kingdom! I had everything. This is mahā-andha-kūpa, a deep, dark well. How can I escape from this? This is impossible for me. O Gurudeva! You are so kind. You are an ocean of mercy. He Gurudeva! On one side my nature pulls me, ‘Come, come, there is a nice bed, wife, and all enjoyment! Young age, wealth, everything is available to enjoy.’ On the other side you throw your rope of mercy into this well of family life and pull me up, saying, ‘Hey! Don’t look at this side.’ You sent Haridāsa Ṭhākura, Balarāma Ācārya, Advaita Ācārya, and the Gosvāmīs.”Haridāsa Ṭhākura never went near any king. This is not the nature of sādhus. It is impossible! He would not go to the homes of wealthy men and beg for any wealth. But he went to the home of the aristocrats Hiranya-Govardhana just to see Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī.When I came to Mathurā, Śrīla Gurudeva taught me, “Never go and beg, ‘Oh, give me one paisa, one rupee.’ Only beg for the mercy of Guru and Vaiṣṇavas, the powerful transcendental personalities in Vraja-maṇḍala, and the Gosvāmīs. Pray to them. Don’t be greedy for anything mundane.” In this world, if Guru and Vaiṣṇavas don’t help us, then the illusory energy of the Lord defeats everyone; it smashes us and makes us into halavā and chutney. Then people lick, eat and destroy us, and pass us out like stool. If Guru and Vaiṣṇavas protect us, our backbone will be strong, and our health and wealth will be God’s property, dedicated only for His service.Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī prays, “How is your mercy? Aho! You took me out of this deep well, and offered me at the lotus feet of Caitanya Mahāprabhu and Svarūpa Dāmodara. I could not understand this at that time. You are not cruel to me, but very kind. Caitanya-candra is the independent Lord.But you prayed for my sake; He then accepted me and always took care of me. He offered me to Svarūpa Dāmodara, who then taught me everything; all this is your mercy.”Dāsa Gosvāmī first offered obeisances to guru, then to śiksa-guru, and Caitanya-candra. This is the proper process. He says, “Without water, a fish suffers and will leave its body in a minute. The soul is inside the body and is always suffering without love and affection. After sometime it leaves the body, but you watered me with bhakti-rasa, saving my life, saving my soul. And you took me out of the small well of suffering in family life and brought me to the great ocean of Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s unlimited mercy. And He offered me to Svarūpa Dāmodara. Now there is no shortness of anything. How much water is present in a small well? One day this will be dry and short. But the great ocean of Caitanya-candra’s mercy will never be finished.”Only Guru-pāda-padma who is rāgānugā can give this anurāga to his disciples. He is perfectly able to protect and save them.Ordinary gurus have no spiritual power. After sometime the disciples leave their guru, and guru leaves his disciples, and everyone runs here and there. Why? They have no link, there is no one watering the soul, they have no rasa. Thus they are dry and suffer.Our beloved Śrīla Gurudeva is not like this. He bestows bhakti-rasa and gives us life and nourishment so that we can grow and one day attain our svarūpa-siddhi. He arranges so that we can obtain this rasa. This is the nature of a pure guru. Mundane gurus give initiation, take some donation, fill their pockets, and then run away, not thinking about the progress of their disciples’ souls. Our Guru-varga is not like this. Therefore this line is running on.Babies don’t understand the help and nourishment of their mother’s breast milk. Anything the Guru-varga gives to the conditioned souls is like pure nourishing milk, but the ignorant souls have no knowledge of this great mercy. However, when they meet with śiksa-guru, he can teach and make them qualified; then they can understand guru’s glory.If we don’t hear this Vilāpa-kusumāñjali, then how can we understand guru and bhakti? And those who say, “Don’t read, you have no qualification,” actually think, “Oh! You are hiding and suffering in deep and dark wells, rotting there in the sewer plants of material life. This is good for you.”Is this called spiritual instruction? No. If anyone is not greedy for this, then how has he come to guru? If you have no desire to cross māyā and enter the eternal world, then why have you come to this line? Why have you come here? The Guru-varga strongly teaches us. Therefore this book is present, Dāsa Gosvāmī is present, his advice is present, his philosophy and example is present. By following this, spiritual power will come to you; love, faith, and respect will come. Then you will never lose anything. Then you won’t think, “I have lost my Gurudeva. My Gurudeva has departed.” What is the meaning of departure?Gurudeva is eternal, God is eternal, and relation with them is eternal. How does this question come to you?Is Gurudeva ash or smoke? Is he dust or anything mundane? No. To understand our Gurudeva’s glories we must come near the Gosvāmīs, who will teach us the nature of Gurudeva and how Śrīla Gurudeva is present even now, bestowing his mercy.Saṁsāra-phukāra kāne nā paṣibe: we will then not hear the talks of ordinary people. Gurudeva will protect us. He makes a protected area for his sincere disciples so that mundane people don’t come and torture them with their mundane desires. They will not come and say, “Come, come with me, make relation with me. I will be your lover. You are my friend. Let’s go to the park and the movies.”By drinking this bhakti-rasa, you will have no more desire or thirst for material life and shall follow bhakti very seriously.Pray everyday with this Vilāpa-kusumāñjali. For those who pray, entering eternal life is not hard, but if we don’t follow this line, we will waste millions more lives wandering in māyā. (click on the title to see more)
Vrndavana, India: 1991 by Bhaktivedanta Narayana Maharaja Srila Sarasvati Thakura knew that he would soon be going to his Master, and therefore he gave some final instructions to his disciples. Our Guru-Maharaja was there, as were Gosvami Maharaja (a prominent...