Sri Manah-Siksa

by Puru Das Adhikari

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Sri Sri Guru-Gaurangau Jayatah

Srila Raghunatha Das Gosvami’s
Sri Manah-siksa
With the Sri Bhajana-darpana-digdarsini-vrtii
Commentary of Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Maharaja
A translation with expanded purport of the
Bhajana-darpana
Commentary of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura

If you are interested in obtaining a copy of the Manah-siksa, you can contact me At PuruDas@compuserve.com with a cc to: unclepuru@hotmail.com or you can phone me at 718/961-7409.

For West Coast orders contact Upananda Prabhu Prabhu at 1/800/900-0108 or Nanda Gopal Prabhu at (209)337-2448

Preface

Today by the causeless mercy of the lotus feet of my most worshipful Sri Gurudeva, nitya-lila-pravista om visnupada astottara-sata Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami, this edition of Sri Manah-siksa composed by Sri Raghunatha Dasa Gosvami, the pre-eminent follower of Sri Rupa Gosvami, the pre-eminent follower of Sri Rupa Gosvami, is happily presented before the faithful readers. The commentary which is found in this edition is called Sri Bhajana-darpana-digdarsini-vrtti, the purport which examines every point of the commentary known as Bhajana-darpana.

It is a translation along with expanded notes of the Bhajana-darapana commentary written by Srila Sacidananda Bhaktivinoda Thakura, who in this modern age reinitiated the flow of the Bhagirathi river of bhakti which had become practically invisible.

Manah-siksa–written by Sri Raghunatha Dasa Gosvami, the eternal associate of Sri Gauranga–is a collection of eleven verses which offer instructions to the mind. These verses are an excerpt from the book known as Sri Stavavali, a compilation of all of the author’s prayers and deep spiritual yearnings. In a very concise manner, Sri Dasa Gosvami has surcharged these eleven verses of Manah-sika with the essence of the teachings of Sri Gaurasundara, the prema-intoxicated embodiment of the combined forms of Sri Sri Radha-Krsna, His intimate associate Sri Svarupa Damodara, and rasacarya Sri Rupa Gosvami.

In the Gaudiya bhakti literatures such as Sri Brhad-bhgavatamrta, Sri Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu, Sat Sandharbhas, and Sri Caitanya —caritamrta, bhakti has been classified in three divisions: sadhana-bhakti, bhava-bhakti, and prema-bhakti. Sadhana-bhakti is further divided into two stages: vaidhi and raganuga. Bhava-bhakti which arises from vaidhi-sadhana-bhakti and prema-bhakti which arises from bhava-bhakti of that nature are predominated by asivarya-jnana or knowledge of the Lord’s opulence and majesty. But bhava originating form raganuga-sadhana-bhakti and prema originating form that standard of bhava is predominated by madhurya or sweetness without the slightest trace of aisvarya.

Only by prema which is predominated by madhurya devoid of any scent of aisvarya or reverence can one obtain the loving service of the lotus feet of Yugala-kisora, Sri Vrajendra-nandana and Srimate Vrsabhanu-nandini. Prema which is predominated by aisvarya causes one to attain to Vaikuntha. Therefore, there is a very subtle yet significant difference between the quality of bhava and prema arising either from vaidhi-sadhana-bhakti or raganuga-sadhana-bhakti. This fundamental difference is the distinctive trait of the line of thought of the Sri Gaudiya Vaisnava acaryas as expressed in this statement from Caitanya-caritamrta, Adi 3.15-17:

sakala jagate more kare vidhi-bhakti
vidhi-bhaktye vraja-bhava paite nahi sakti
aisvarya-jnanete saba jagat misrita
aisvarya-sithila-preme nahi mora prita
aisvarya-jnane vidhi-bhajana kariya
vaikunthake yaya catur-vidha mukti pana
Everywhere in the world people worship Me according to the scriptural rules of vaidhi-bhakti. But one cannot attain Me in My supreme Vraja feature by vaidhi-bhakti. In vaidhi-bhakti, aisvarya-jnana is most prominent. The entire world is mixed with this conception for asivarya-jnana. Prema which is weakened by aisvarya gives Me no pleasure. Those who worship Me according to the rules of vaidhi predominated by aisvarya-jnana go to Vaikuntha and obtrain the four kinds of liberation–sarsthi (opulence like that of the Lord), sarupya (bodily features like those of the Lord), samipya (nearness to the Lord), and salokya (residence in the Lord’s realm).

A deep attachment which is permeated by spontaneous and intense absoprtion in the object of one’s affection is called raga. Ragamayi-bhakti unto Sri Krsna which is saturated with this deep attachment is known as ragatmika-bhava. Bhakti which follows in the wake of ragatmika-bhakti is called raganuga-bhakti. Greed to obtain the mood of the Lord’s ragatmika devotees is the sole qualification for raganuga-bhakti. Such raganuga-bhakti sadhakas should always reside in Vraja. By means of both the physical body and the internally conceived spiritual body which is suitable to carry out the service of Sri Krsna for which one anxiously aspires, one should always remember Sri Krsna and His beloved gopis of Vraja and constantly serve Sri Radha-Krsna Yugala.

While continuously residing in Vraja under the guidance of rasika bhaktas who are deeply immersed in the mood of Vraja, one should hear, chant, and remember the name, form,qualities, and pastimes of Sri Krsna. This is the method of bhajana for sadhakas who are traversing the path of raganuga-bhakti. Out of all the angas of bhakti such as sravana and kirtana which have been described in relationship to vaidhi-bhakti, those which are favorable to the development of one’s particular disposition may also be accepted on the path of raganuga-sadhana.

It is essential to know that by following the intructions which Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu gave to all the jivas of this world, a strong yearning

To pursue the path of raganuga will suddenly awake in the sadhaka’s heart. Sri Caitanyadeva personally practiced, propagated, and tasted only that bhajana which is undertaken via the raga-marga. If by great fortune the jivas obtain the association of the beloved associates of Sri Gaurangadeva, then they will certainly develop greed for the mood of the eternal residents of Vraja. Until one receives such association, most sadhakas adopt the process of vaidhi-bhakti, which certainly must be done.

By taking shelter of the lotus feet of Sri Caitanyadeva, one will inevitably enter into raga-marga. Sahdakas who are eagerly desrious of entering raga-marga must first practice the sadhana of raganuga-bhakti. The qualification which is required for raganuga-bhakti is extremely high.

When greed actually develops toward the mood of the eternal residents of Vraja, one loses his taste for the things of this world and obtains release from pious and sinful activities, karma, akarma, vikarma, jnana, yoga and nondevotional vairagya.

In vaidhi-marga one first develops sraddha. Then one acquires sadhu-sanga. Thereafter, by practice of bhajana one is released from anarthas. Gradually one then develops nistha, ruci, asakti, and bhava. By this system bhava is obtained after a very long time. But when greed develops, all anarthas are very easily detroyed because of the absence of hankering for material sense enjoyment. Bhava also arises concomitantly with this greed. In raga-marga, however, it is essential to cast off all falsity, deceit, and desire for prestige. If one does not do so, anarthas will increase and one will be dangerously deviated. In this event, debased attachment or raga will be mistaken for visuddha-raga or pure attachment. Gradually one’s material association will increase, and the sadhaka will fall down.

Another name for raganuga-bhakti is rupanuga-bhakti. Without becoming a rupanuga or follower of Sri Rupa Gosvami, it is imposible to enter the path of raganuga-bhakti. If by some great fortune a person develops an intense desire to enter the path of raganuga-bhakti, then one should certainly study and follow this Manah-siksa of Sri Dasa Gosvami, the prinicpal follower of Sri Rupa Gosvami.

A Brief History of the Life of Sri Raghunatha Dasa Gosvami

Sri Raghunatha Dasa Gosvami appeared in a respected and fabulously wealth family of kayastha landholders in a village called Krsnapura (Saptagrama) within the Jugali distrit of West Bengal around the year 1416 Sakabda (1494). His father’s name was Sri Govardhana Majumandara. Sri Govardhana’s older brother was named Hiranya Majumadara. Although both brtohers were opulent landowners, they were devoutly religious and maintained tremendous faith in the Vaisnava sadhus.

The renowned devotee of Lord Gaura, namacarya Haridasa Thakura, used to visit their royal court. Their guru and royal priest, Sri Yadunandana Acarya, was in intimate disciple of Sri Advaita Acarya and a close friend of Sri haridas Thakura. It was Yadunandana Acarya who was the diksa guru of Srila Raghunatha Dasa.

In his childhod Raghunatha Dasa received the association of pure devotees such as Sri haridas Thakura and Sri Yadunandana Acarya, and in his early youth he met with Sri Nityananda Prabhu and His associates. This influence left a very deep impression on him in regard to unalloyed bhakti.

He very quickly renounced wealth comparable to that of Indra’s and a wife who was a beautiful as an apsara or heavenly goddess. He went to Puri-dhama and submitted himself at the feet of Sri Caitnaya Mahaparabhu , who entrusted him inot the hands of His second self, Sri Svarupa Damodara. Since that time he became known as "Svarupera Raghu’ or the Raghu of Svarupa, and by his mercy he acquired elegibility to render intimate service to Sri Gaurasundara. Being very pleased with his unflinching dedication to bhajana and exemplary renunciation, Sri Gaurasundara endowed him with the eligibility to serve Sri Giridhari in the form of Govardhana-sila and Sri Radhika in the form of a gunja-mala.

After Sri Gaurasundara withdrew His pastimes from the view of this world, Sri Raghunatha Dasa became overwhelmed with the agony of intolerable separation. He left Puri-dhama and went to Vrndavana with the intention of giving up his life by throwing himself off the peak of Sri Govardhana Hill. There, however, Sri Rupa and Sanatana Gosvamis convinved him to give up his idea by showering him with the nectar of their mercy and sweet Krsna-katha. From that time he became their third brother and took up permanent residence on the bank of Sri Radha-kunda.

At Radha-kunda he remained deeply immersed in worshipping Sri Radha-Govinda in the mood of separation with swevere,nearthly renunciation. At the advanced age of approximately one hundred years, while performing this standard of bhajana, he entered into the unmanifest pastimes of Sri Yugala by entering into Sri Radha-kunda. He is understood to be Rati Manjari in Vraja-lila. In Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Adi 10.98-102, Sri Krsnadas Kaviraja Gosvami has described Sri Raghunatha Dasa Gosvami’s method of bhajana in the following words:

anna-jala tyaga kaila anya-kathana
pala dui-tina matha karena bhaksana
sahasra dandavat kare, laya laksa nama
dui sahasra vaisnavere nitya paranama
ratri-dine radha-krsnera manasa sevana
prahareka mahaprabhura caritra-kathana
tina sandhya radha-kunde apatita snana
vraja-vasi vaisnave kare alingana mana
sardha sapta-prahara kare bhaktira sadhane
cari danda nidra, seha nahe kona-dine
When Sri Raghunatha Das Gosvami came to Vraja, he took up residence at Sri Radha-kunda on the order of Sri Rupa and Sanatana Gosvamis and became immersedin bhajana in the mood of anguished separation. He practically gave up all food an ddrink. Every day he accepted only a few ounces of buttermilk in order to sustain his life. He never spoke or listened to mundane talks which had no connection to Krsna-katha. Every day as a mater o regulation he offered one thousand dandavat pranamas unto Sri Nanda-nandana, Srimati Vrsabanu-nandini, Their eternal pastime-associates, and ot the places of Their divine lila. He also offered two thousand pranamas unto different Viasnavas and chanted harinama to the extent of one hundred thousand names. Day and night he served Sri Radha Krsna within his mind. He discussed the pastimes of Sriman Mahaprabhu for three hours, bathed in Sri Radha kunda three times daily, and would regularly embrace the Vrajavasi Vaisnavas. In this way he used to perform bhakti for twenty-two and a half hours a day out of twenty-four. Thus he would sleep for only one and a half hours, and some days he would not sleep at all.

He has written three books which are very famous: (1)Sri Stavavali, (2)Sri Dana-carita (Dana-keli-cintamani), and (3)Sri Mukta-carita. The present book, Manah-siska is included within the Sri Stavavali, a compilation of stavas and stutis composed by him.

Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura
Author of the commentary known as
Sri Bhajana-darpana

Sri Saccidananda Bhaktivinoda Thakura, the ternal associate of Sri Gaurasundara, reinitiated the current of bhakti in this modern age wherein almost eveyrone is addicted to material enjoyment steeped in the glitter of material knowledge. He has written a commentary on the verses of Sri Manah-siksa which is rooted in deep philosophical conclusions and full of rasa. In this commentary he has very carefully analysed every verse in relationship to raganuga-bhakti or rupanuga-bhakti. Supported by quotations from Sri Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu, Ujjvala-nilamani, Stava-mala, Stavavali, and other Gosvami literature, he has indicated the essential mood of bhajana for the benefit of raganuga-sadhakas. All raganuga sadhakas will remain forever indebted to him for this extraordinary gift.

Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura is an intimate associate of Sacinadana Sri Gaurasundara, who is adorned with the complexion and bhava of Sri Radha and who delivers the fallen souls in the age of Kali. He appeared in this world in order to spread sri harinama-sankirtana and to propagate pure bhakti andin particular rupanuga (raganuga) bhakti, thus fulfilling the inner longing of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. He appeared o September 2, 1838 in a highly educated and respected family in a vilage named Virana-gara near Sri Mayapura within the district of Sri Navadvipa-dhama, West Bengal. He disappeared form this world on June 23, 1914 in the city of Calcutta. He wrote approxiately on ehundred books on bhakti in Sanskrit, Bengali, Hindi, English, Oriya, and other languages. For this reason,enlightened persons have called himn’the seventh Gosvami’ and the Bhagiratha or Ganges of bhakti in the modern age.

He revealed the place of Sri Gauranga’s appearance at the yoga-pitha in Sri Mayapoura and also begot Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati. Furthermore, bu his influential and impeccavble discourses, articles and books about pure bhakti, and by establishing Sri Nama-hata or the marketplace of the holy name in every town and village, he laid the foundation for widespread distribution of rupanuga-bhakti throughout the world. Today the outcome of this is directly visible everywhere. The sound vibration of Sri Gaura Krsna-nama-sankirtana resounds in every corner of the world, and even in far off Western and Eastern countries enourmous, opulent temples have been built.

My most worshipful Gurudeva,astottara-sata Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaj, isa guardian of the Sri Gaudiya sampradaya and the founder-acarya of the Sri Gaudiya Vedanta Samiti as well as the Guaidya Maths or temples which operate under the jurisdiction of that Samiti. In addition to the books which hepersonallywrote, he republished the books of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura and othe previous acaryas in the Bengali language. Now by his heartfelt desrie, inspiration and cuasselessmercy, Jaiva-dharma, Sri Caitanya-siksamrta, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhura-siksa, Sri Siksastaka, and other books have been published in India’s national language of Hindi, while others are still being published.

The present director and acarya of the Sri Gaudiya Vedanta Samiti, my most worshipful godbrother parvrajakacarya Sri Bhaktivedanta Vamana Maharaja, is deeply immersed in transcendental knowledge and is an intimate servant of the lotus feet of our Gurudeva. I humbly pray at his lotus feet that he may kindly offer this precious book, Manah-siksa, into the lotus hands of our beloved Gurudeva, thus fulfilling the inner longing of his heart.

I am fully confident that devotees who have a deep yearning for bhakti and particularly raganuga-bhakti sadhakas, who covet the dust of Vrndavan will have tremendous appreciation for this book.. Faithful persons who study this book will obtain qualifications to enter into the prema-dharma of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Inconclusion, may our most worshipful Gurudeva, who is the conentrated manifestation of the Lord’s compassion pour down a profuse shower of mercy upon us, thus enabling us to attain greater and greater eligibility in fulfilling the inner longing of his heart. Ths is our anxious, heartfelt prayer at his lotus feet, which bestows Krsna-prema.

Nrsimha Caturdasi
510 years after the apperance
of Lord Gauranga (Gaurabda)
(1918 by the Inidan Calendar)
2nd May, 1996

An aspirant for a particle of mercy
of Sri Hari, Guru and Vaisnavas,
Humble and insignificant,
Tridani Bhaksu Sri Bhaktivedanta Narayana

"Mahotsavayate menas to enjoy bliss. How Krnsa is running forward. His earings are swinging o nhis cheks. He is wearing pitambara, a yellow cloth. Yasoda has decoated her child very beautifully. Krsna looks backwards, and seeing Yasoda coming to catch Him, runs again. Yoasoda is very full-bodied, and as she is running, her body is trembling. This is the ‘mahotsava’ of Gokula. Whosever sees this becomes enchanted. Such mahotsavas are manifested by harinama. Sri Nama produces Radha-kunda mahotsavayate, Vrndavana mahotsavayate–but according to one’s adhikara. To attain this we should perform bhajana like the raganuga Viasnavas–with firm nistha. " (Sri Manah-siksa, back cover)

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(*Note from Puru: The teachings of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada and Srila Bhaktivedanta Narayana Maharaj are parallel. Here are His Divine Graces’ translations and purports to the verses mentioned by Srila B.V. Narayana Maharaj in his preface to the Mana-siksa. Some additional verses have also been included)

Excerpted from Sri Caitanya-cartamrta:
Published by The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust 1974

TEXT 15

sakala jagate more kare vidhi-bhakti
vidhi-bhaktye vraja-bhava paite nahi sakti

SYNONYMS

sakala--all; jagate--in the universe; more--to Me; kare--they do; vidhi-bhakti--regulative devotional service; vidhi-bhaktye--by regulative devotional service; vraja-bhava--the feelings of those in Vraja; paite--to obtain; nahi--not; sakti--the power.

TRANSLATION

"Everywhere in the world people worship Me according to scriptural injunctions. But simply by following such regulative principles one cannot attain the loving sentiments of the devotees in Vrajabhumi.

TEXT 16

aisvarya-jnanete saba jagat misrita aisvarya-sithila-preme nahi mora prita

SYNONYMS

aisvarya-jnanete--with knowledge of the opulences; saba--all; jagat--the world; misrita--mixed; aisvarya-sithila-preme--to love enfeebled by opulence; nahi--there is not; mora--My; prita--attraction.

TRANSLATION

"Knowing My opulences, the whole world looks upon Me with awe and veneration. But devotion made feeble by such reverence does not attract Me.

PURPORT

After His appearance, Lord Krsna thought that He had not distributed the transcendental personal dealings with His devotees in dasya, sakhya, vatsalya and madhurya. One may understand the science of the Supreme Personality of Godhead from the Vedic literature and thus become a devotee of the Lord and worship Him within the regulative principles described in the scriptures, but one will not know in this way how Krsna is served by the residents of Vrajabhumi. One cannot understand the dealings of the Lord in Vrndavana simply by executing the ritualistic regulative principles mentioned in the scriptures. By following scriptural injunctions one may enhance his appreciation for the glories of the Lord, but there is no chance for one to enter into personal dealings with Him. Giving too much attention to understanding the exalted glories of the Lord reduces the chance of one's entering into personal loving affairs with the Lord. To teach the principles of such loving dealings, the Lord decided to appear as Lord Caitanya.

TEXT 17

aisvarya-jnane vidhi-bhajana kariya
vaikunthake yaya catur-vidha mukti pana

SYNONYMS

aisvarya-jnane--in knowledge of the opulences; vidhi--according to rules and regulations; bhajana--worship; kariya--doing; vaikunthake--to Vaikuntha; yaya--they go; catuh-vidha--four kinds; mukti--liberation; pana--achieving.

TRANSLATION

"By performing such regulated devotional service in awe and veneration, one may go to Vaikuntha and attain the four kinds of liberation.

TEXT 18

sarsti, sarupya, ara samipya, salokya
sayujya na laya bhakta yate brahma-aikya

SYNONYMS

sarsti--opulences equal with the Lord's; sarupya--the same form as the Lord's; ara--and; samipya--personal association with the Lord; salokya--residence on a Vaikuntha planet; sayujya--oneness with the Lord; na laya--they do not accept; bhakta--devotees; yate--since; brahma-aikya--oneness with Brahman.

TRANSLATION

"These liberations are sarsti [achieving opulences equal to those of the Lord], sarupya [having a form the same as the Lord's], samipya [living as a personal associate of the Lord] and salokya [living on a Vaikuntha planet]. Devotees never accept sayujya, however, since that is oneness with Brahman.

PURPORT

Those engaged in devotional service according to the ritualistic principles mentioned in the scriptures attain these different kinds of liberation. But although such devotees can attain sarsti, sarupya, samipya and salokya, they are not concerned with these liberations, for such devotees are satisfied only in rendering transcendental loving service to the Lord. The fifth kind of liberation, sayujya, is never accepted even by devotees who perform only ritualistic worship. To attain sayujya, or merging into the Brahman effulgence of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is the aspiration of the impersonalists. A devotee never cares for sayujya liberation.

TEXT 19

yuga-dharma pravartaimu nama-sankirtana
cari bhava-bhakti diya nacamu bhuvana

SYNONYMS

yuga-dharma--the religion of the age; pravartaimu--I shall inaugurate; nama-sankirtana--chanting of the holy name; cari--four; bhava--of the moods; bhakti--devotion; diya--giving; nacamu--I shall cause to dance; bhuvana--the world.

TRANSLATION

"I shall personally inaugurate the religion of the age--nama-sankirtana, the congregational chanting of the holy name. I shall make the world dance in ecstasy, realizing the four mellows of loving devotional service.

TEXT 20

apani karimu bhakta-bhava angikare
apani acari' bhakti sikhaimu sabare

SYNONYMS

apani--personally; karimu--I shall make; bhakta-bhava--the position of a devotee; angikare--acceptance; apani--personally; acari'--practicing; bhakti--devotional service; sikhaimu--I shall teach; sabare--to all.

TRANSLATION

"I shall accept the role of a devotee, and I shall teach devotional service by practicing it Myself.

PURPORT

When one associates with a pure devotee, he becomes so elevated that he does not aspire even for sarsti, sarupya, samipya or salokya, because he feels that such liberation is a kind of sense gratification. Pure devotees do not ask anything from the Lord for their personal benefit. Even if offered personal benefits, pure devotees do not accept them, because their only desire is to satisfy the Supreme Personality of Godhead by transcendental loving service. No one but the Lord Himself can teach this highest form of devotional service. Therefore, when the Lord took the place of the incarnation of Kali-yuga to spread the glories of chanting Hare Krsna--the system of worship recommended in this age--He also distributed the process of devotional service performed on the platform of transcendental spontaneous love. To teach the highest principles of spiritual life, the Lord Himself appeared as a devotee in the form of Lord Caitanya.

TEXT 21

apane na kaile dharma sikhana na yaya
ei ta' siddhanta gita-bhagavate gaya

SYNONYMS

apane--personally; na kaile--if not practiced; dharma--religion; sikhana--the teaching; na yaya--does not advance; ei--this; ta'--certainly; siddhanta--conclusion; gita--in the Bhagavad-gita; bhagavate--in Srimad-Bhagavatam; gaya--they sing.

TRANSLATION

"Unless one practices devotional service himself, he cannot teach it to others. This conclusion is indeed confirmed throughout the Gita and Bhagavatam.

(Cc. Adi-lils Ch.3, Txt. 15-21)
Translation and Commentary by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

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TEXT 91

mahaprabhura priya bhrtya----raghunatha-dasa
sarva tyaji' kaila prabhura pada-tale vasa

SYNONYMS

mahaprabhura--of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu; priya--very dear; bhrtya--servant; raghunatha-dasa--Raghunatha dasa Gosvami; sarva tyaji'--renouncing everything; kaila--did; prabhura--of the Lord; pada-tale--under the shelter of the lotus feet; vasa--habitation.

TRANSLATION

Srila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami, the forty-sixth branch of the tree, was one of the most dear servants of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu. He left all his material possessions to surrender completely unto the Lord and live at His lotus feet.

PURPORT

Srila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami was most probably born in the year 1416 sakabda (A.D. 1495) in a kayastha family as the son of Govardhana Majumdara, who was the younger brother of the then Zamindar, Hiranya Majumdara. The village where he took birth is known as Sri Krsnapura. On the railway line between Calcutta and Burdwan is a station named Trisabagha, and about one and a half miles away is the village of Sri Krsnapura, where the parental home of Sri Raghunatha dasa Gosvami was situated. A temple of Sri Sri Radha-Govinda is still there. In front of the temple is a large open area but no large hall for meetings. However, a rich Calcutta gentleman named Haricarana Ghosa, who resided in the Simla quarter, recently repaired the temple. The entire temple compound is surrounded by walls, and in a small room just to the side of the temple is a small platform on which Raghunatha dasa Gosvami used to worship the Deity. By the side of the temple is the dying River Sarasvati.

The forefathers of Srila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami were all Vaisnavas and were very rich men. His spiritual master at home was Yadunandana Acarya. Although Raghunatha dasa was a family man, he had no attachment for his estate and wife. Seeing his tendency to leave home, his father and uncle engaged special bodyguards to watch over him, but nevertheless he managed to escape their vigilance and went away to Jagannatha Puri to meet Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. This incident took place in the year 1439 sakabda (A.D. 1518). Raghunatha dasa Gosvami compiled three books, named Stava-mala (or Stavavali), Dana-carita and Muktacarita. He lived a long time. For most of his life he resided at Radha-kunda. The place where Raghunatha dasa Gosvami performed his devotional service still exists by Radha-kunda. He almost completely gave up eating, and therefore he was very skinny and of weak health. His only concern was to chant the holy name of the Lord. He gradually reduced his sleeping until he was almost not sleeping at all. It is said that his eyes were always full of tears. When Srinivasa Acarya went to see Raghunatha dasa Gosvami, the Gosvami blessed him by embracing him. Srinivasa Acarya requested his blessings for preaching in Bengal, and Srila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami granted them. In the Gaura-ganoddesa-dipika (186) it is stated that Srila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami was formerly the gopi named Rasa-manjari. Sometimes it is said that he was Rati-manjari.

TEXT 92

prabhu samarpila tanre svarupera hate
prabhura gupta-seva kaila svarupera sathe

SYNONYMS

prabhu--Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu; samarpila--handed over; tanre--him; svarupera--Svarupa Damodara; hate--to the hand; prabhura--of the Lord; gupta-seva--confidential service; kaila--did; svarupera--Svarupa Damodara; sathe--with.

TRANSLATION

When Raghunatha dasa Gosvami approached Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu at Jagannatha Puri, the Lord entrusted him to the care of Svarupa Damodara, His secretary. Thus they both engaged in the confidential service of the Lord.

PURPORT

This confidential service was the personal care of the Lord. Svarupa Damodara, acting as His secretary, attended to the Lord's baths, meals, rest and massages, and Raghunatha dasa Gosvami assisted him. In effect, Raghunatha dasa Gosvami acted as the assistant secretary of the Lord.

TEXT 93

sodasa vatsara kaila antaranga-sevana
svarupera antardhane aila vrndavana

SYNONYMS

sodasa--sixteen; vatsara--years; kaila--did; antaranga--confidential; sevana--service; svarupera--of Svarupa Damodara; antardhane--disappearance; aila--came; vrndavana--to Vrndavana.

TRANSLATION

He rendered confidential service to the Lord for sixteen years at Jagannatha Puri, and after the disappearance of both the Lord and Svarupa Damodara, he left Jagannatha Puri and went to Vrndavana.

TEXT 94

vrndavane dui bhaira carana dekhiya
govardhane tyajiba deha bhrgupata kariya

SYNONYMS

vrndavane--at Vrndavana; dui bhaira--the two brothers (Rupa and Sanatana); carana--feet; dekhiya--after seeing; govardhane--on the hill of Govardhana; tyajiba--will give up; deha--this body; bhrgupata--falling down; kariya--doing so.

TRANSLATION

Srila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami intended to go to Vrndavana to see the lotus feet of Rupa and Sanatana and then give up his life by jumping from Govardhana Hill.

PURPORT

Jumping from the top of Govardhana Hill is a system of suicide especially performed by saintly persons. After the disappearance of Lord Caitanya and Svarupa Damodara, Raghunatha dasa Gosvami keenly felt separation from these two exalted personalities and therefore decided to give up his life by jumping from Govardhana Hill in Vrndavana. Before doing so, however, he wanted to see the lotus feet of Srila Rupa Gosvami and Sanatana Gosvami.

TEXT 95

ei ta' niscaya kari' aila vrndavane
asi' rupa-sanatanera vandila carane

SYNONYMS

ei ta'--thus; niscaya kari'--having decided; aila--came; vrndavane--to Vrndavana; asi'--coming there; rupa-sanatanera--of Srila Rupa Gosvami and Sanatana Gosvami; vandila--offered respects; carane--at the lotus feet.

TRANSLATION

Thus Srila Raghunatha dasa Gosvami came to Vrndavana, visited Srila Rupa Gosvami and Sanatana Gosvami and offered them his obeisances.

TEXT 96

tabe dui bhai tanre marite na dila
nija trtiya bhai kari' nikate rakhila

SYNONYMS

tabe--at that time; dui bhai--the two brothers (Srila Rupa and Sanatana); tanre--him; marite--to die; na dila--did not allow; nija--own; trtiya--third; bhai--brother; kari'--accepting; nikate--near; rakhila--kept him.

TRANSLATION

These two brothers, however, did not allow him to die. They accepted him as their third brother and kept him in their company.

TEXT 97

mahaprabhura lila yata bahira-antara
dui bhai tanra mukhe sune nirantara

SYNONYMS

mahaprabhura--of Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu; lila--pastimes; yata--all; bahira--external; antara--internal; dui bhai--the two brothers; tanra--his; mukhe--in the mouth; sune--hear; nirantara--always.

TRANSLATION

Because Raghunatha dasa Gosvami was an assistant to Svarupa Damodara, he knew much about the external and internal features of the pastimes of Lord Caitanya. Thus the two brothers Rupa and Sanatana always used to hear of this from him.

TEXT 98

anna-jala tyaga kaila anya-kathana
pala dui-tina matha karena bhaksana

SYNONYMS

anna-jala--food and drink; tyaga--renunciation; kaila--did; anya-kathana--talking of other things; pala dui-tina--a few drops of; matha--sour milk; karena--does; bhaksana--eat.

TRANSLATION

Raghunatha dasa Gosvami gradually gave up all food and drink but a few drops of buttermilk.

TEXT 99

sahasra dandavat kare, laya laksa nama
dui sahasra vaisnavere nitya paranama

SYNONYMS

sahasra--thousand; dandavat--obeisances; kare--does; laya--takes; laksa--one hundred thousand; nama--holy names; dui--two; sahasra--thousand; vaisnavere--unto the devotees; nitya--daily; paranama--obeisances.

TRANSLATION

As a daily duty, he regularly offered one thousand obeisances to the Lord, chanted at least one hundred thousand holy names and offered obeisances to two thousand Vaisnavas.

TEXT 100

ratri-dine radha-krsnera manasa sevana
prahareka mahaprabhura caritra-kathana

SYNONYMS

ratri-dine--day and night; radha-krsnera--of Radha and Krsna; manasa--within the mind; sevana--service; prahareka--about three hours; mahaprabhura--of Lord Caitanya; caritra--character; kathana--discussing.

TRANSLATION

Day and night he rendered service within his mind to Radha-Krsna, and for three hours a day he discoursed about the character of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu.

PURPORT

We have many things to learn about bhajana, or worship of the Lord, by following in the footsteps of Raghunatha dasa Gosvami. All the Gosvamis engaged in such transcendental activities, as described by Srinivasa Acarya in his poem about them (krsnotkirtana-gana-nartana-parau premamrtambho-nidhi). Following in the footsteps of Raghunatha dasa Gosvami, Srila Rupa Gosvami and Sanatana Gosvami, one has to execute devotional service very strictly, specifically by chanting the holy name of the Lord.

TEXT 101

tina sandhya radha-kunde apatita snana
vraja-vasi vaisnave kare alingana mana

SYNONYMS

tina sandhya--three times, namely morning, evening and noon; radha-kunde--in the lake of Radha-kunda; apatita--without failure; snana--taking bath; vraja-vasi--inhabitants of Vrajabhumi; vaisnave--all devotees; kare--does; alingana--embracing; mana--and offering respect.

TRANSLATION

Sri Raghunatha dasa Gosvami took three baths daily in the Radha-kunda lake. As soon as he found a Vaisnava residing in Vrndavana, he would embrace him and give him all respect.

TEXT 102

sardha sapta-prahara kare bhaktira sadhane
cari danda nidra, seha nahe kona-dine

SYNONYMS

sardha--one and a half hours; sapta-prahara--seven praharas (twenty-one hours); kare--does; bhaktira--of devotional service; sadhane--in execution; cari danda--about two hours; nidra--sleeping; seha--that also; nahe--not; kona-dine--some days.

TRANSLATION

He engaged himself in devotional service for more than twenty-two and a half hours a day, and for less than two hours he slept, although on some days that also was not possible.

TEXT 103

tanhara sadhana-riti sunite camatkara
sei rupa-raghunatha prabhu ye amara

SYNONYMS

tanhara--his; sadhana-riti--process of devotional service; sunite--to hear; camatkara--wonderful; sei--that; rupa--Sri Rupa Gosvami; raghunatha--Raghunatha dasa Gosvami; prabhu--lord; ye--that; amara--my.

TRANSLATION

I am struck with wonder when I hear about the devotional service he executed. I accept Srila Rupa Gosvami and Raghunatha dasa Gosvami as my guides.

PURPORT

Srila Krsnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami accepted Raghunatha dasa Gosvami as his special guide. Therefore at the end of every chapter he says, sri-rupa-raghunatha-pade yara asa caitanya-caritamrta kahe krsnadasa. Sometimes it is misunderstood that by using the word raghunatha he wanted to offer his respectful obeisances to Raghunatha Bhatta Gosvami, for it is sometimes stated that Raghunatha Bhatta Gosvami was his initiating spiritual master. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Gosvami does not approve of this statement; he does not accept Raghunatha Bhatta Gosvami as the spiritual master of Srila Krsnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami.

TEXT 104

inha-sabara yaiche haila prabhura milana
age vistariya taha kariba varnana

SYNONYMS

inha--of them; sabara--all; yaiche--as; haila--became; prabhura--of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu; milana--meeting; age--later on; vistariya--expanding; taha--that; kariba--I shall do; varnana--description.

TRANSLATION

I shall later explain very elaborately how all these devotees met Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.

(Cc. Adi-lila Ch. 10, Txt 91-104)
Translation and Commentary by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

************************************************************

"Gentlemen, the offering of such an homage as has been arranged this evening to the acaryadeva is not a sectarian concern, for when we speak of the fundamental principle of gurudeva or acaryadeva, we speak of something that is of universal application. There does not arise any question of discriminating my guru from yours or anyone else’s.

There is only one guru, who appears in an infinity of forms to teach you, me and all others."

His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Excerpted from:

Our Eternal Guide
Om Tat Sat
Your servant,
Puru Das Adhikari

[Originally published 02/12/00 on VNN]


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