Glossary of Names



Acyuta - infallible or imperishable; one who is never deviated, moved, or shaken; one who never falls from the transcendental position; a name for Sri Krsna.

Advaita Acarya - an intimate associate of Sriman Mahaprabhu and one of the members of the panca-tattva. He is the combined form of Maha Visnu and Sada-Siva. He was a disciple of Sri Madhavendra Puri and by age senior to Sri Caitanya. Seeing the fallen condition of the jivas in Kali yuga, He prayed to the Lord to descend. Sriman Mahaprabhu appeared partly to fulfill His request. 

Ahalya - the wife of the great sage Gautama Rsi. Indra, the chief of the devas, was infatuated with the beauty of Ahalya. Once in Satyayuga, while Gautama Rsi was away, Indra assumed the form of Gautama by mystic power and had union with Ahalya. When Gautama returned he could understand the whole situation through his yogic power. Furious with his wife, Gautama cursed her to become a stone. Ahalya was deeply aggrieved and fell crying at Gautama’s feet to beg for deliverance from the curse. Gautama consoled her by saying that in Treta-yuga, when Bhagavan Ramacandra would appear on the earth, He would touch the stone with His foot and she would thus be delivered from the curse. 

     Normally Satya-yuga is followed by Dvapara and then Treta in the cycle of the four yugas. Ahalya appealed to Gautama, saying that she would not be able to bear waiting so long for the appearance of Ramacandra. Gautama assured her that in this particular cycle of the four yugas, Treta would follow Satya. By the desire of Gautama Rsi, the order of the yugas was reversed. When Ramacandra appeared, He touched that stone with His foot and Ahalya was released from the curse. Thus Ahalya, who had assumed the form of a stone, was liberated from the state of covered consciousness (achadita-cetana), at which time she was reunited with her husband.

Ananga Manjari - the younger sister of Srimati Radhika. She is thirteen years old and her complexion is the color of vasanta-ketaki, a beautiful golden flower blossoming in spring. Her dress is the color of indivara, a blue lotus flower. Her principal service is preparing tambula for the pleasure of Radha and Krsna. In gauranga-lila she manifests as Jahnava Devi, the consort and sakti of Sri Nityananda Prabhu.

Angada - the son of Tara and Vali, the monkey chieftain of the kingdom of Kiskindha. Sugriva had enlisted the help of Bhagavan Rama to kill Vali. When Vali was on his death-bed, he offered his son, Angada, at the feet of Sri Rama. After Vali’s death, Ramacandra appointed Sugriva as the king of Kiskindha and Angada as the crown prince. Angada assisted Sri Rama in the battle against Ravana. Thus, although in the body of a monkey, which is representative of the state of sankucita-cetana (contracted consciousness), he engaged in the process of bhakti.


Badarayana Rsi - see Vyasadeva.

Bharata - the eldest of one hundred sons of Lord Rsabhadeva, who was a saktyavesa-avatara, an impowered incarnation of Sri Bhagavan.  Although his father was a brahmana, Bharata exhibited the nature of a ksatriya and thus he acted in that capacity. By the desire of his father, Bharata was enthroned as the emperor of the entire earth.  Nonetheless, he was a great bhakta of Sri Bhagavan. After ruling the kingdom for a considerable time, detachment awakened in his heart for the world. Dividing the kingdom and his possessions amongst his sons, he went alone to the asrama of Pulaha Rsi in Hariharaksetra to absorb himself in the worship of Bhagavan.

     Once, after bathing in the River Gandaki close by his hermitage, he sat down on the sacred banks of that river, and began to chant sri-nama. He saw a thirsty doe drinking water, and looking around cautiously. Just then, she heard the fierce roar of a lion nearby, and out of fear jumped into the river to cross it. She was pregnant, and due to her sudden jump the baby deer fell out of her womb into the current of the river. The doe died after crossing the river. Bharata’s heart melted. He ran and picked up the drowning, motherless baby deer, brought it to his hermitage, and began to take care of it with great affection.

     Bharata’s affection for the baby deer gradually increased, and as it did so, his sadhana-bhajana decreased, until he finally gave up his devotional practices completely. One day, he could not find the baby deer and he started lamenting “Ha deer! Ha deer!” and overwhelmed with grief, finally gave up his life. In due course of time, he received the body of a deer, according to his thoughts at the time of death. However, due to the influence of the devotional practices performed in his previous birth, he could remember the cause of his falldown, and became repentant. Leaving his parents, he again went to Pulaha-asrama and was delivered by hearing the holy name. This is an example of a contracted consciousness (sankucita-cetana).  Similarly, if a renounced person or a hermit becomes attracted to women etc., he certainly falls down from his exalted position. Some people put forward the theory that one attains the human birth, which is the best of all births, through a natural progression, and that one does not fall down from it. Such a proposition is quite wrong, and very misleading. One takes birth according to his desires, and there is no scope for changing this principle. Bharata demonstrated this principle through his own life. 

Brahma - the first created being in the universe. Directed by Sri Visnu, he creates all life forms in the universe and rules the mode of passion.


Caitanya Mahaprabhu - also referred to as Sri Caitanya, Sriman Mahaprabhu, Gaura, Gauracandra, Gaura-Hari, Gaura-kisora, Gauranga, Gaurasundara, Gaura, Krsna-Caitanya, Nimai Pandita, Sacinandana, and Visvambhara; the Supreme Lord who appeared approximately five hundred years ago (1486 A.D.) in Navadvipa, West Bengal. Although He is identical to Sri Krsna, He appeared with the bhava (internal mood) and kanti (bodily complexion) of Srimati Radhika in order to taste the mellows of Her love for Krsna.  Assuming the mood of a bhakta, He spread love for Krsna through the chanting of sri-hari-nama.

Catuhsana - see Kumara.

Chand Kazi - the guru of Hussain Shah and chief magistrate of Navadvipa during the time of Sri Caitanya. He forbade the performance of kirtana in Navadvipa and had a mrdanga drum broken.  Later, he received the mercy of Sriman Mahaprabhu and became a great devotee. In krsna-lila he was King Kamsa. 

Chota Haridasa - one of Lord Caitanya’s intimate associates. He accepted the renounced order and was chastised for a slight indiscretion.  Once Bhagavan Acarya requested Chota Haridasa to beg some good quality rice from the elderly Madhavi Devi so that he could feed Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Madhavi Devi was an exemplary devotee of Mahaprabhu, deeply absorbed in bhajana. When Mahaprabhu tasted the excellent quality of the rice, He inquired where it had come from. Bhagavan Acarya explained that Chota Haridasa had received it from Madhavi Devi. Hearing this Mahaprabhu was silent. Later He informed the devotees that Chota Haridasa was no longer permitted to come to Him, for He could not bear to see the face of a renunciate who freely converses with women.  Chota Haridasa eventually went to Prayaga and gave up his life in the Ganga. Thereafter he attained the form of a Gandharva in Vaikuntha. In that form he would visit Mahaprabhu every night and perform melodious kirtana for His pleasure. Chota Haridasa did not actually commit any offense; this was simply a pastime of the Lord with an unalloyed devotee to establish the sanctity of the renounced order.


Dhruva -This pastime occurred at the beginning of creation. Emperor Uttanapada, who was born in the dynasty of Svayambhuva Manu, had two queens. The elder was named Suniti, while the younger, who controlled the king, was called Suruci. Suniti had a son by the name of Dhruva. Child Dhruva was deprived of his father’s affection, and could not tolerate his stepmother’s tortures.  Following his mother’s advice, he therefore went into the deep forest, where he became completely absorbed in very austere and difficult worship of the lotus-eyed Sri Hari. His prayer was not to attain the Supreme, but to fulfill his material desire for a kingdom.  However, by the mercy of Sri Bhagavan, not only was his ambition for a kingdom fulfilled, but he also obtained pure bhakti. If one performs bhakti with undivided attention, even to fulfill a material desire, one always attains all auspiciousness in the end. Dhruva is an example of such an artharthi.

Dinanatha - the guardian and refuge of destitute souls; a name for Sri Krsna.

Durga - the wife of Lord Siva, also known as Sakti, Mahavidya, Kali, Syama, and Nistarini. She presides over the material energy and is one of the five deities worshiped by the pancopasakas.  Durvasa Muni - the son of Maharsi Atri and Anusuya. A partial expansion of Sri Rudra, a great rsi and propounder of the jnanasastras.  Like Lord Siva, he was easily angered and easily pleased. He could give great benedictions and terrible curses. Durvasa Muni was always surrounded by sixty thousand disciples. Consequently, his unexpected arrival could create an awkward situation for his host. The Muni’s intimidating presence, and the difficulty of accommodating so many disciples could cause fear of the possible repercussion of displeasing him.


Four Kumaras - see Kumara.


Gadadhara Pandita - an intimate associate of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. He is one of the members of the panca-tattva. He embodies Sri Krsna’s internal potency and is a manifestation of Srimati Radhika. After Mahaprabhu accepted sannyasa, Gadadhara Pandita accompanied Him to Puridhama. He used to recite the Srimad-Bhagavatam for the pleasure of Sri Gauranga. Mahaprabhu wrote a sloka in His own handwriting in Gadadhara Pandita’s Bhagavad-Gita. After Mahaprabhu’s disappearance from this world, Gadadhara Pandita could not bear the pain of separation. He departed from this world eleven months after His disappearance. 

Gajendra - the following pastime took place during the fourth manvantara. An elephant called Gajendra was the leader of many strong elephants, and he lived with many she-elephants in the deep jungle in a valley of Trikuta, the King of mountains. In the valley was a large, beautiful and inviting lake, and one day Gajendra was fearlessly absorbed in sporting in the lake with his female elephants and children. All of a sudden, a strong crocodile angrily caught hold of his leg. Gajendra used all his strength to try to release himself, but the strong elephant could not get free, even after struggling for a thousand years. Slowly, Gajendra begun to lose strength. When he saw that he had no other protection, he took complete and exclusive shelter of Sri Bhagavan, and began to chant in great distress, eloquent Sanskrit slokas learned by him in his previous birth as King Indradyumna. Sri Bhagavan, who carries the cakra, arrived there riding on Garuda, and released Gajendra by cutting open the crocodile’s mouth with His cakra.

     In his previous life, Gajendra had been King Indradyumna of the state of Dravida, a member of the Pandava dynasty. Once Maharsi Agastya came to visit Indradyumna, but when he arrived

there, the king was worshiping Sri Bhagavan in deep trance, and therefore could not greet the rsi. Due to this offense, Maharsi Agastya cursed the king to take birth as an elephant. This is an

example of a person in distress (artta) and contracted consciousness (sankucita-cetana).

Ganesa - the son of Lord Siva and Parvati. He removes all material impediments and bestows great wealth upon his worshipers; one of the five deities worshiped by the pancopasakas.  Gangesopadhyaya - author of a famous treatise on nyaya, Tattvacintamani.  There are no authentic records regarding his birth or place of origin, but he is believed to have been from Mithila and to have lived in the 12th-13th century. He was a keen dialectician and a brilliant polemicist. He made the nyaya-sastra a science and an art of debate. He developed a new school of nyaya known as navya-nyaya. His Tattva-cintamani is a systematic account of epistemology, logic and philosophy of grammar. It deals almost exclusively with the epistemology of the nyaya system with little attention to metaphysics or ontology. The Tattva-cintamani laid the foundation of a new system of dialectics in India. His book became so popular that no one thereafter could be considered a scholar of nyaya unless they wrote a commentary on this book.  The most famous commentary on Tattva-cintamani was written by Raghunatha (Kanaibhatta) Siromani, a contemporary of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu (see Siromani).

Gaura - a short form of the name Gauranga.

Gauracandra - one who has arisen like a dazzling golden moon; a name for Caitanya Mahaprabhu (see Caitanya). 

Gaura-Hari - one who has stolen the golden complexion of Srimati Radhika; a name for Krsna appearing in the form of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.

Gaura-kisora - the beautiful golden youth; a name for Caitanya Mahaprabhu.

Gauranga - one whose limbs have a hue of molten gold; a name for Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, who is Sri Krsna Himself, endowed with the bhava (inner mood) and kanti (bodily complexion) of Srimati Radhika.

Gaura-Nitai - a short name for Sri Gauranga and Sri Nityananda Prabhu.

Gaurasundara - one who has a splendid golden form; a name for Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu (see Caitanya).

Gauridasa Pandita - a beloved associate of Caitanya Mahaprabhu. His father was Kamsari Misra and his mother was Sri Kamala Devi. He had five brothers named Suryadasa, Damodara, Jagannatha, Krsnadasa, and Nrsimha-Caitanya. His eldest brother, Suryadasa, had two daughters – Srimati Vasudha Devi and Srimati Jahnava Devi – who became the wives of Nityananda Prabhu. Gauridasa’s wife was Vimala Devi. They had two sons, Balarama and

Raghunatha. Gauridasa lived in Ambika Kalna, on the opposite side of the Ganga from Santipura. Just next to Gauridasa’s house there is a large tamarind tree, beneath which Sriman Mahaprabhu

and Sri Nityananda Prabhu would sit. Once Gauridasa implored the two brothers to remain in his home forever. In order to pacify Gauridasa, Mahaprabhu made a beautiful set of Gaura-Nitai Deities from a nearby neem tree and presented them to him. In krsnalila Gauridasa Pandita is Subala-sakha, one of the dvadasa-gopalas of Vraja (Gaura-ganoddesa-dipika 128).


Gautama - is popularly known as Aksapada Gautama. According to some scholars, he lived in the 5th century BC and founded the pracina, or older, nyaya school of philosophy. He wrote Nyayasutra, which is known as the earliest systematic literature of the system. The traditional nyaya system as it stands today is mainly based on this work of Gautama. The Nyaya-sutra is divided into five adhyayas, or lessons, usually called books. Each lesson is divided into two ahnikas, or daily portions, and these in turn contain a number of sutras, or aphorisms. These sutras are also divided into prakaranas, or topics, by commentators such as Vatsyayana and Vacaspati.

Gopijana-vallabha - the lover of the gopis of Vraja; a name for Sri Krsna.

Gopinatha Acarya - a great devotee of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.  He was the husband of Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya’s sister. During Mahaprabhu’s childhood, he lived in Nadiya. He later lived with the Bhattacarya in Puridhama while Mahaprabhu was there. He was the first one in Puri to proclaim Sri Caitanya as Bhagavan, for which he was initially ridiculed by the Bhattacarya, who later obtained the mercy of Mahaprabhu.

Govinda - a name for Krsna; one who pleases the gopis, gopas, cows, senses, the earth, and Govardhana Hill.

Gunaraja Khana - an associate of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and resident of Kulinagrama. He was also known as Sri Maladhara Vasu. His father was Bhagiratha Vasu and his mother was Indumati.  He wrote a famous book known as Sri Krsna-vijaya which was much appreciated by Mahaprabhu. Gunaraja Khana used to visit Sri Caitanya every year for the performance of the ratha-yatra festival at Puri. It was there that the residents from Kulinagrama inquired from the Lord about the characteristics of a Vaisnava.


Hari - a name for Sri Krsna which means ‘One who takes away’ He takes away everything inauspicious, and who steals the hearts of His bhaktas.


Indra - the predominating deity of the atmosphere, sky and rain, he is a deva who is subordinate to Brahma, Visnu, and Siva, but is the chief of all the other celestial devas.


Jagadananda Pandita - a confidential friend and eternal associate of Sri Caitanya. He used to perform kirtana with Sriman Mahaprabhu. He knew nothing other than the Lord. According to the Gaura-ganoddesa-dipika (51), in krsna-lila Jagadananda Pandita has a mood like that of Satyabhama’s, the chief wife of Sri Krsna (satyabhama prakaso ‘pi jagadananda panditah). As Satyabhama always exhibited a haughty and contrary mood, Jagadananda exhibited a similar mood in his relationship with Mahaprabhu. He remained with the Lord in Puridhama, constantly engaged in His service. He is the author of Sri Prema-vivarta. 

Jahnava Devi - was the daughter of Suryadasa, the elder brother of Gauridasa Pandita, and one of the two wives of Nityananda Prabhu.  According to Gaura-ganoddesa-dipika (65-66), in krsna-lila she is Revati, the consort of Lord Balarama, and Ananga Manjari, the younger sister of Srimati Radhika.

Jaimini - the founder of the purva-mimamsa system of Indian philosophy, better known as the mimamsa system. According to modern scholars he composed his purva-mimamsa-sutra around the 4th century BC. It deals with the investigation of the nature of dharma and lays down the principle interpretation of the Vedic texts on which the performance of sacrifices wholly depends. It describes the different sacrifices and their purposes. The mimamsa-sutra consists of twelve chapters, the first of which deals with the source of knowledge and the validity of the Vedas. It is recognized as the basic comprehensive work of the mimamsa school of philosophy which gave rise to a host of commentaries and sub-commentaries. 

Jamavanta - also known as Jambavan and Rksaraja, a king among bears. In Treta-yuga he was one of the ministers of the monkey king Sugriva. In age, wisdom, strength, and moral judgment he was superior to all. It was he who reminded Hanuman of his strength when it came time to cross the ocean. He was the chief minister in the war against Ravana. Sri Ramacandra took his advice in all matters and offered him great respect. In the battle of Lanka, when all were bewildered by the mayic power of Meghanada (Indrajit), Jambavan remained unaffected by that maya. Both Meghanada and Ravana fell unconscious from the blows of the fists of Jambavan. After Rama returned to Ayodhya and was corronated as king, He ordered Jambavan and all the monkeys to return to their kingdom. Jambavan agreed only upon receiving the Lord’s promise that he would obtain the Lord’s association again in Dvapara-yuga. Thus when Sri Krsna appeared in Dvaparayuga, Jambavan’s desire was fulfilled.

Jiva Gosvami - the son of Sri Vallabha (Anupama), who was the brother of Rupa and Sanatana Gosvamis. Even as a young boy he was deeply attracted Sri Krsna. He spent his time not in playing but in worshiping Bhagavan with flowers, sandalwood, and other articles.  In his youth he went to Varanasi to study Sanskrit under Madhusudana Vacaspati, a disciple of Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya.  After completing his studies he went to Vrndavana and took shelter of his uncles, Sri Rupa and Sanatana. After the disappearance of Rupa and Sanatana, he became the leader amongst all of the Vaisnava followers of Sriman Mahaprabhu. His numerous literary contributions, which include books such as Sat-sandarbha and Gopal-Campu, and commentaries on Srimad-Bhagavatam, Bhakti-rasamrtasindhu, and Ujjvala-nilamani, have lent support with sastric evidence to the teachings of Sri Caitanya. According to Gauraganoddesa-dipika (194-207) he is Vilasa Manjari in krsna-lila.


Kakkhati - Srimati Radhika’s pet female monkey. 

Kali - a form of the Goddess Durga; one whose complexion is dark or black.

Kaliya - a gigantic naga or serpent of the race of Kadru and Kasyapa.  At the time of Sri Krsna’s appearance, he took up residence in the Yamuna river and poisoned the water with his venom. Krsna chastised Kaliya by dancing on his hoods. By the touch of Krsna’s lotus feet, Kaliya was purified and he left the Yamuna for Ramanakadvipa, a small island adjacent to Jambudvipa.

Kanada - an ancient sage. He is the originator of the vaisesika system of Indian philosophy (see vaisesika in the Glossary of Terms).  The word kanada primarily means “one who lives on a small particle of food.” This may have some connection to the basic tenet of the school which says that the universe is formed of the minutest units of matter, called anu (the Nyaya-kandali of Sridhara may be consulted for further information on this point). Kanada is also referred to by the synonyms of his name, e.g. Kanabhuja and Kanabhaksa, or by his genealogical name Kasyapa. He is also known as Uluka, which literally means an owl. Tradition explains this name with a story that Lord Siva appeared before the sage in the form of an owl and revealed the vaisesika system to him. It is traditionally believed that Kanada lived and taught in Varanasi. 

     Kanada is credited with the authorship of the Vaisesika-sutra, the basic text of the system, but the precise dates of his life and work cannot be ascertained. While tradition sets him in the 8th century BC, modern scholarship assigns the composition of the Vaisesikasutra to the first century AD. The basic tenets of the system were known to the early compilers of the Caraka-samhita – not only to its final editor, Caraka, but to its original author, Agnivesa, who is thought to have lived several centuries prior to the Christian era.  The vaisesika philosophy, as propounded in the sutra, is acknowledged by several schools of Buddhist philosophy, particularly the madhyamikas and the vaibhasikas. The Pali work, Milindapanha, which was written in the 1st century AD, mentions vaisesika as an established branch of Indian learning.

Kapiladeva - an avatara of Sri Krsna, who appeared as the son of Kardama Muni and Devahuti. He taught the true purport of the sankhya philosophy to his mother. In this original sankhya philosophy of Kapiladeva there are twenty-five principles. Beyond these there is the existence of Sri Bhagavan, who is the source of the other principles. There was another Kapila who appeared later in the dynasty of Agni who taught an atheistic version of the sankhya philosophy (see Kapila above). The atheistic sankhya accepts the twenty-five principles but denies the existence of God. The sankhya of Kapiladeva ultimately culminates in bhakti.

Kasyapa - the son of Marici, who was one of the six sons produced from the mind of Brahma. Kasyapa was one of the first progenitors of the universe. He married thirteen daughters of Daksa, headed by Aditi. The universe was filled with living beings of all different varieties by the combination of Kasyapa and his wives. Aditi was the mother of the devas headed by Indra. Kasyapa and Aditi performed severe austerities to please the Lord, and as a result He appeared as their son, Vamanadeva.

Kavi Karnapura - one of the three sons of Sivananda Sena. His brothers were named Caitanya dasa and Rama dasa. His real name was Paramananda Sena, but he was given the names Puri dasa and Karnapura by Sriman Mahaprabhu. When he was a young boy he sucked the toe of Mahaprabhu. He was a superlative writer and poet. He wrote many famous books, including Gaura-ganoddesadipika, Sri Caitanya-candrodaya-nataka, Ananda-vrndavana-campu, Sri Caitanya-carita-mahakavya, Arya-sataka, Krsnahnika-kaumudi, Alankara-kaustubha, a commentary on the tenth canto of Srimad- Bhagavatam, and Caitanya-sahasra-nama-stotra.

Kesava - a name for Krsna. When the word kesa is taken to mean the Kesi demon, the word va is connected to the verbal root vadh, to kill. In this sense, Kesava means the slayer of the Kesi demon. Another meaning of kesa is hair. When this is combined with the verbal root vah (to wear or possess), Kesava means one who has beautiful long hair. Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura has given two further explanations of the name Kesava: kesan vayate samskarotiti kesava, when kesa is combined with the verbal root ve (to braid), Kesava means one who expertly braids and decorates the hair of His beloved, Srimati Radhika; and ko brahma iso mahadeva tavapi vayase vasikarosi, the syllable ka refers to Brahma, the word isa refers to Mahadeva and the verbal root ve here is used in the sense of bringing under control. Thus Kesava means one who brings even Brahma and Mahadeva under His control.

Krsna - the original Supreme Lord, Svayam Bhagavan. He is avatari, the source of all other avataras. His partial manifestation is the Paramatma and His bodily effulgence is the all-pervading brahma.  His body is composed of sac-cid-ananda – eternality, knowledge, and bliss. He is the personification of all spiritual mellows, raso vai sa. His father is Nanda Maharaja, His mother is Yasoda, His brother is Balarama, and His eternal consort is Srimati Radhika. He is a charming young cowherd boy with a complexion like that of a fresh monsoon raincloud. His wears a brilliant yellow dhoti, a peacock feather on His crown, and a garland of fresh forest flowers. He possesses sixty-four primary transcendental qualities, out of which four are unique to Him alone: venu-madhurya, He attracts the entire world and especially the gopis with the melodious sound of His flute; rupa-madhurya, He possesses extraordinary beauty which captivates the minds of all; prema-madhurya, He is surrounded by intimate loving associates whose prema is completely unbounded by reverence or formality; and lila-madhurya, He performs beautiful and enchanting pastimes, amongst which rasa-lila is the summit. 

Krsna Caitanya - a name for Caitanya Mahaprabhu (see Caitanya). 

Krsnadasa Kaviraja - the author of Sri Caitanya-Caritamrta. He received the darsana of Nityananda Prabhu in a dream and was ordered by Him to go to Vrndavana. At the repeated request of the Vaisnavas, and after obtaining the blessings of the Madana-Gopala Deity, he accepted the task of writing the biography of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. He also wrote Govinda-lilamrta, a description of Radha and Krsna’s eight-fold daily pastimes, and a commentary known as Saranga-rangada on Bilvamangala Thakura’s famous book, Krsnakarnamrta.  He is Kasturi Manjari in krsna-lila.

Kumara -The four Kumaras are called Sanaka, Sanatana, Sanandana and Sanat. Brahma created them in the beginning of creation from his mind (manah). That is why they are called Brahma’s manasa-putra (sons born of his mind). Because of their profound knowledge, they were completely detached from worldly attraction, and they did not give any assistance in their father’s task of creation, because they had developed an inclination for impersonal speculation (brahma-jnana). Brahma was extremely displeased with this, and he prayed to Bhagavan Sri Hari for the welfare of his sons. Sri Bhagavan was pleased by Brahma’s prayers, and in His Hamsa (swan) avatara, He attracted their minds away from dry impersonal knowledge to the knowledge of pure devotional service on the absolute platform. Because of this, Sanaka Rsi and his brothers are known as jnani-bhaktas. They are the originators of the Nimbaditya disciplic succession.


Lalita-Sakhi - an intimate friend of Srimati Radhika. She is the first and most prominent of the asta-sakhis, the eight confidential girlfriends of Sri Radha. According to Srila Rupa Gosvami’s Sri Radha-Krsna Ganoddesa-dipika (Baharampura edition) she is twenty-seven days older than Sri Radha and she is also known as Anuradha. She has a contradictory and haughty nature. Her complexion is like gorocana, a brilliant yellow pigment. Her garments are the colors of peacock feathers. Her mother is Saradi and her father is Visoka.  Her husband is Bhairava, who is a friend of Govardhana Malla, the husband of Candravali. The eight principal sakhis in her yutha (group) are Ratna-prabha, Ratikala, Subhadra, Bhadra-rekhika, Sumukhi, Dhanistha, Kala-hamsi, and Kalapini. Lalita is the leader of the parama-prestha-sakhis; she instructs and directs all the sakhis; she understands all the different moods of loving affairs; and she is expert in the tactics of union and separation in the matter of prema.  If by chance Krsna ever commits any offense toward Sri Radha, Lalita is quick to rebuke Him, raising her head in anger.


Madhva - the chief acarya of the Brahma sampradaya; born in 1239 near Udupi. His father and mother were Sri Madhyageha Bhatta and Srimati Vedavidya. He accepted diksa and sannyasa at age twelve from Acyuta-preksa. His sannyasa name was Purnaprajna. He wrote commentaries on the Bhagavad-Gita, Srimad-Bhagavatam, Brahmasutra, and many other books. He established the doctrine of dvaitavada which emphasizes the eternal distinction between the living entities and the Supreme Lord. He preached vigorously against the kevaladvaitavada teachings of Sri Sankaracarya. 

Mahadeva - a name for Lord Siva; the great Lord or the chief among the devas (see Siva).

Mahaprabhu - the Great Master, Sri Krsna Caitanya (see Caitanya). 

Mahavidya - a name for the Goddess Durga. This name indicates that because Goddess Durga is the personification of the material energy, she is the source of all material science. 

Mahesa - the great (maha) Lord or master (isa). This is a name for Lord Siva.

Maitreyi - Yajna-valkya had two wives, namely Katyayani and Maitreyi. When he reached the age of fifty, he called his two wives and divided all his wealth between them saying “Be happy and allow me to go the forest to chant and remember Krsna.”

     Katyayani told him, “ You have given me everything. So now you can go and practice as you desire.” The second wife Maitreyi said, “ First, please answer my question. You are giving me everything. My question is, can these things make me happy forever? You are giving me all these things, and previously you had all these possessions.  Why are you giving them up and going to the forest? If these things can give me eternal happiness, why did you not get happiness from them? Why are you giving them up and going to the forest? I know that these material things could not actually make you happy. They only gave you momentary happiness.” Yajna-valkya was satisfied to hear his wife speaking in this way. He embraced her and said, “Truly, you are my svadharmani, my religious wife. No ordinary person can ask a question like this. Such a person is very rare.”

     He then took that wife Maitreyi with him to the forest and, helping each other, they began to practice bhakti-yoga. 

Manu - any one of fourteen principal progenitors and administrators of the universe appearing in succession; the first of these is known as Svayambhuva to whom the famous lawbook, Manusamhita, is ascribed.

Mukunda - a name for Sri Krsna. The word muku is equivalent to mukti and the verbal root da means to give or bestow. Thus, Mukunda means the granter of liberation. Also means one whose face is lusterous like the kunda flower.


Narada - a great sage among the devas; he is thus known as Devarsi.  He was born from the mind of Brahma. He is a liberated associate of Sri Krsna, who travels throughout the material and spiritual worlds broadcasting His glories. In Caitanya lila he appears as Srivasa Pandit

Narayana - nara–mankind, ayana–the shelter of. Means the shelter for mankind. An expansion of Krsna; the opulent Lord of Vaikuntha.

Nilambara Cakravarti - the father of Sri Saci Mata, and maternal grandfather of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu; a great astrologer. According to Gaura-ganoddesa-dipika (104-105), in krsna-lila he was Garga Muni and Sumukha gopa.

Nimai Pandita - Sriman Mahaprabhu’s childhood name was Nimai because He was born beneath a neem tree. In His youth He became a great scholar, and thus He came to be known as Nimai Pandita.

Nimbaditya - also known as Nimbarkacarya; the head acarya of the Kumara sampradaya. He established the philosophical doctrine of dvaitadvaita-vada, which delineates both the oneness and the distinction of all things with the Lord. He performed his bhajana at Dhruva-ksetra near Govardhana. He wrote a commentary on Vedanta-sutra named Vedanta-saurabha, as well as Vedantakamadhenu- dasa-sloka, Krsna-stavaraja, Guruparampara, Vedantatattva-bodha, Vedanta-siddhanta-pradipa, Svadharmadhva-bodha, Aitihya-tattva-siddhanta, Radhastaka, and a commentary on Bhagavad-Gita.


Nistarini - a name of Durga-Devi meaaning she who transports one across material existence; she who awards moksa.

 Nitai - a nickname for Nityananda Prabhu.

Nityananda - a manifestation of Sri Krsna who in krsna-lila is Sri Balarama. He appeared together with Sriman Mahaprabhu and was the Lord’s chief assistantin distributing harinama-sankirtana to the fallen jivas of Kali-yuga. He was born in Ekacakra in 1473 on the day of sukla-trayodasi in the month of magha (January-February). His father was Hadai Pandita and His mother was Padmavati. According to some, He was the disciple of Sri Madhavendra Puri, and according to others the disciple of Laksmipati, the guru of Madhavendra Puri.

Nrga - a great king and the son of Maharaja Iksvaku. He was exceedingly generous. He once gave an incalculable number of exceptional cows to a brahmana in charity. By chance one of those cows escaped and returned to the King’s herd. Unwittingly, Nrga gave that same cow to a different brahmana. Along the way, the first brahmana recognized the cow and was very upset. The two brahmanas went to Nrga to settle the matter. Although the King offered each of the brahmanas a hundred thousand cows in exchange for the one cow, they both left feeling dissatisfied. Shortly thereafter, the King died. When he was brought before Yamaraja, he was given the choice to first enjoy the results of his pious actions or to suffer the reactions to his misdeeds. He chose to first suffer the reactions to his misdeeds. Instantly he obtained the body of a lizard and was cast to Earth, where he was made to live in a dried-up well.

     One day in Dvapara-yuga, Nrga was found by some boys of the Yadu dynasty. The boys went and reported this to Krsna who then came and lifted the lizard out of the well with His left hand.  Upon being touched by the lotus-hand of Sri Krsna, Nrga was released from the body of the lizard. He is an example of someone who attained Krsna’s mercy from the state of sankucita-cetana, contracted consciousness.

Nrsimhadeva - the half-man, half-lion avatara of Krsna. He appeared in a ferocious mood to protect His beloved bhakta, Prahlada Maharaja, when Prahlada was being severely oppressed by his demoniac father, Hiranyakasipu.


Padmanabha - one whose navel is shaped like a lotus; a name for Krsna or Visnu.

Pandavas - the five sons of Pandu: Yudhisthira, Bhima, Arjuna, Nakula, and Sahadeva. They were great devotees of Sri Krsna. They are the heroes of the Mahabharata and were the victorious party in the battle of Kuruksetra.

Pariksit Maharaja - the son of Abhimanyu and Uttara, and the grandson of Arjuna. He appeared just at the end of Dvapara-yuga.  After the battle of Kuruksetra, he was the sole living descendant of the Pandavas and Kauravas. While still in his mother’s womb, Krsna protected him from the deadly brahmastra weapon of Asvatthama.  When Pariksit was fully grown, the Pandavas installed him as emperor and retired to the Himalayas. He was such a powerful ruler that he was able to forestall the onset of the age of Kali. Later, by the influence of the Lord’s internal potency, he committed an act of indiscretion against the sage Samika Rsi and was cursed by the sage’s five year old son, Srngi, to die from a snake-bite within seven days. Pariksit calmly accepted the curse as the mercy of Sri Krsna.  He left the kingdom in the hands of his son, Janamejaya, and went to the bank of the Ganga. Great sages from all over the world immediately gathered there to witness his passing away. He spent his final days hearing the narration of Srimad-Bhagavatam from the sage Sukadeva. Absorbed in ambrosial descriptions of Sri Krsna and His bhaktas, Pariksit Maharaja gave up eating, drinking, sleeping, and all fear of his imminent death.

Patanjali - a great maharsi and author of the yoga-sutra (see yoga in the Glossary of Terms).

Patita-pavana - one who purifies and delivers the fallen souls; a name for Sri Caitanya and Nityananada and Sri Guru. 

Prabodhananda Sarasvati - the uncle of Sri Gopala Bhatta Gosvami.  He was a resident of Ranga-ksetra and a sannyasi of the Sri Ramanuja sampradaya. Gopala Bhatta Gosvami received diksa from him. Prabodhananda was a worshiper of Laksmi-Narayana, but by the mercy of Sri Gaurasundara he adopted the worship of Sri Radha- Govinda. He wrote many books such as Sri Vrndavana-mahimamrta, Sri Radha-rasa-sudhanidhi, Sri Caitanya-candramrta, Sangitamadhava, Ascarya-rasa-prabandha, Sri Vrndavana-sataka, Sri Navadvipa-sataka, Sruti-stuti-vyakhya, Kamabija-Kamagayatrivyakhyana, Gita-Govinda-vyakhyana, and Sri Gaura-sudhakaracitrastaka. According to Gaura-ganoddesa-dipika (163), in krsna-lila Prabodhananda Sarasvati is Tungavidya, one of the asta-sakhis of Srimati Radhika.

Pradyumna Brahmacari - a personal associate of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. He was a worshiper of Sri Nrsimhadeva and thus Sriman Mahaprabhu additionally gave him the name Nrsimhananda. In Sri Caitanya-caritamrta Srila Krsna Dasa Kaviraja has narrated how within his mind Nrsimhananda Brahmacari created a road out of valuable jewels and surrounded it by all kinds of sublime paraphanalia (lakes and gardens etc.) so that Sri Sacinandana could feel delight as He travelled to Sri Vrndavana. 

Prahlada - a great bhakta of Sri Krsna and son of Hiranyakasipu. As a small boy of only five years old he was severly oppressed by his father, Hiranyakasipu, who was bitterly opposed to Visnu for having killed his brother, Hiranyaksa. In spite of many threats and attempts on his life, Prahlada remained composed and absorbed in remembrance of Sri Krsna. He was protected in all such situations and ultimately the Lord appeared as Nrsimhadeva to kill his demoniac father. The history and teachings of Prahlada are renowned in Srimad-Bhagavatam and other scriptures.


Radha - the eternal consort of Sri Krsna and the embodiment of the hladini potency. She is known as mahabhava-svarupini, the personification of the highest ecstacy of divine love. She is the source of all the gopis, the queens of Dvaraka, and the Laksmis of Vaikuntha.  Her father is Vrsabhanu Maharaja, Her mother is Kirtida, Her brother is Sridama, and Her younger sister is Ananga Manjari. She has an effulgent, golden complexion and She wears blue garments.  She is adorned with unlimited auspicious qualities and is the most dearly beloved of Sri Krsna.

Radha-Syama - the divine couple Sri Sri Radha-Krsna.

Raghunandana Bhattacarya - the son of Harihara Bhattacarya and a contemporary of Sriman Mahaprabhu. He was also known as Smarta Bhattacarya. He wrote a lengthy book known as Astavimsati-tattva (28 principles) dealing with the scriptural codes of conduct for upanayana, marriage, sraddha, and many other essential social and moral functions. Aside from this he wrote several other smrti-sastras including Rasayatra-paddhati, Sankalpa-candrika, Tripuskarasanti-tattva, Dvadasa-yatra-pramana-tattva, and Harismrti-sudhakara. Kalirama Vacaspati and Radha-Mohan Gosvami of Santipura each wrote commentaries on his Asta-vimsati-tattva. 

Raghunatha dasa Gosvami - also known as Dasa Gosvami; a confidential associate of Sriman Mahaprabhu. He was born in 1494 in the village of Krsnapura within the Hugali district of West Bengal.  His father was Govardhana Majumadara and His uncle was Hiranya Majumadara. His diksa-guru was Sri Yadunandana Acarya.  At an early age he gave up a beautiful wife and opulence like that of Indra to take shelter at the feet of Sriman Mahaprabhu in Jagannatha Puri. Mahaprabhu placed him under the guidance of Svarupa Damodara Gosvami. After the disappearance of Sri Caitanya and Svarupa Damodara, he went to Vrndavana and remained under the shelter of Sri Rupa and Sri Sanatana Gosvamis.  He stayed at Radha-kunda, constantly absorbed in bhajana. He wrote three books: Stavavali, Danakeli-cintamani, and Mukta-carita.  In krsna-lila he is Rati Manjari.

Rama - a lila-avatara or pastime avatara of Sri Krsna; He is the famous hero of the Ramayana. He is also known as Ramacandra, Raghunatha, Dasarathi-Rama, and Raghava-Rama. His father was Maharaja Dasaratha, His mother was Kausalya, and His wife was Sita. He had three brothers named Laksmana, Bharata, and Satrughna. The celebrated monkey Hanuman was His beloved servant and devotee. After killing the pernicious demon, Ravana, and rescuing Sitarani with the help of the monkey army, Rama returned to Ayodhya and was crowned king.

Ramanuja - the celebrated Vaisnava acarya of the Sri sampradaya who founded the Vedantic school which taught the doctrine of visistadvaitavada, qualified non-dualism. He lived at Kancipuram and Sri Rangam in South India in the 12th century. He is believed to have been an incarnation of Sesa and is known also as both Ramanujacarya and Yatiraja. He wrote commentaries on Bhagavad- Gita, Srimad-Bhagavatam, and Vedanta-sutra.

Rasaraja - the emperor of rasa; one who is supreme in relishing the mellows of rasa; this is a name for Sri Krsna who is akhilarasamrta-murti, the embodiment of the essence of all rasa.

Rupa Gosvami - an eternal associate of Sriman Mahaprabhu. He is glorified as having established the inner desire of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu in this world. He understood the confidential moods of Sri Krsna and broadcast them in his many books. He was personally instructed by Mahaprabhu at Prayaga and empowered to write books explaining the esoteric truths of uttama-bhakti. His unique contribution was to explain how bhakti is transformed

into rasa and how rasa is the real basis of loving relationships with Sri Krsna. Some of his prominent books are Bhakti-rasamrtasindhu, Ujjvala-nilamani, Vidagdha-madhava, and Lalita-madhava. According to Gaura-ganoddesa-dipika (180), he is Sri Rupa Manjari in krsna-lila.


Sacinandana - the son of mother Saci; a name for Caitanya Mahaprabhu (see Caitanya).

Sanatana Gosvami - an eternal associate of Sriman Mahaprabhu and elder brother of Rupa Gosvami. He was personally instructed by Mahaprabhu, who ordered him to write books explaining the principles of bhakti and to excavate the lost places of krsna-lila in Vraja. His Brhad-bhagavatamrta is considered to be the earliest of the Gosvami writings and the source of inspiration for many other works. He wrote a famous commentary on the tenth canto of Srimad-Bhagavatam, originally titled Vaisnava-tosani, which later became known as Brhad-Vaisnava-tosani after Srila Jiva Gosvami wrote a tenth canto commentary known as Laghu-Vaisnava-tosani.  He also enumerated the basic principles of bhakti in his book Haribhakti-vilasa. According to Gaura-ganoddesa-dipika (181), he is Lavanga Manjari in krsna-lila.

Sanda - one of the sons of Sukracarya and a teacher of Prahlada Maharaja. The word sanda means a bull. Sanda embodies the nature of one who is dull-witted in the matter of spiritual realization. 

Sankara - another name for Siva (see Siva). Sometimes Sankara is used as a short name for Sankaracarya.

Sankaracarya - a celebrated teacher of Vedanta philosophy and the reviver of Brahmanism. He is understood to have been an incarnation of Lord Siva. He was born in 788 and he died in 820 at the age of thirty-two. According to some accounts of his life, he was born approximately 200 BC. He was born into a Nambudaripada brahmana family in the village of Kalapi or Kasala in the province of Kerala.  His father’s name was Sivaguru and his mother was Subhadra. The couple worshiped Lord Siva for a long time to obtain a son, and thus when their son was finally born, he received the name Sankara. His father passed away when Sankara was only three years old. By the time he was six, Sankara was a learned scholar, and he accepted the renounced order at the age of eight. He travelled all over India to suppress the Buddhist doctrine and revive the authority of Vedic dharma.

     Sankaracarya wrote a famous commentary on Vedanta-sutra known as Sariraka-bhasya, Inquiry into the Nature of the Embodied Spirit. Although he made an invaluable contribution by re-establishing Brahmanism and the Vedic authority, which laid some groundwork for the teachings of Sri Caitanya, the precepts he established are at odds with the Vedic conclusion and the Vaisnava acaryas. He declared the Supreme brahma to be devoid of form, characteristics, potencies, and qualities. He states that although brahma is full of knowledge, it is not a conscious all-knowing being. Although brahma is of the nature of transcendental bliss, it is not a subjective experiencer of that bliss. brahma is not the creator of the world. When that featureless brahma comes in contact with maya, it assumes material qualities. These ideas have been strongly refuted by all the Vaisnava acaryas.

Sapta-tala - the seven tala (palmyra) trees. In Treta-yuga the monkey chief Vali once procured seven succulent tala fruits. He kept them aside and went to bathe, thinking that he would enjoy them later.  Upon his return, he discovered that a poisonous snake had already ruined them. Vali became furious and cursed the snake to obtain the body of a tree. By the potency of this curse, the snake at once manifested as seven Palmyra trees (sapta-tala). The father of the snake was acutely distressed and cursed Vali in return that whoever could pierce all seven tala trees with a single arrow would be the cause of Vali’s death. Later, Sri Ramacandra accomplished this feat to assure Sugriva of His ability to kill Vali. In Kali-yuga when Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu travelled to South India to deliver the jivas of that place, He came upon the sapta-tala trees. Upon seeing them, He became overwhelmed with prema and rushed forward to embrace them. As soon as He did so, the trees disappeared. By the touch of Sriman Mahaprabhu they were delivered from the state of acchadita-cetana, covered consciousness. When the local residents witnessed this astonishing event, they could understand that Sriman Mahaprabhu was directly Sri Ramacandra.  Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya - an associate of Sriman Mahaprabhu; also known as Sri Vasudeva Sarvabhauma. According to the Gaura-Ganoddesa-dipika (119) he was formerly Brhaspati, the preceptor of the devas. At first his residence was in Navadvipa, but he came to Puri dhama on the invitation of King Prataparudra, and was the chief pandita in the king’s court. He was one of the foremost scholars of his time. When Mahaprabhu came to Puri dhama, Sarvabhauma instructed Him for one week in the impersonal conception of Vedanta. After this, Mahaprabhu explained the true meaning of Vedanta and bestowed His mercy upon Sarvabhauma in such a way that the Bhattacarya could understand Sri Krsna’s true identity. At that point Sarvabhauma submitted himself unto His lotus feet. 

Saunaka and rsis - Once, Saunaka and other rsis organized sacrificial yajnas for a thousand years in the holy place of Naimisaranya, hoping to attain the supreme benediction. After some time, they lost all hope of attaining their desired goal in this way, but they attained their desired perfection through the answers that Sri Suta Gosvami (the disciple of Sri Krsna-dvaipayana Vedavyasa) gave to their questions. The six questions that they asked him are: (1) What is the ultimate benediction for the jivas? (2) What topic can we hear that will please the life of all souls, Paramatma Sri Hari? (3) What were the purposes that Vasudeva Sri Krsna desired to fulfill when He appeared from Devaki’s womb? (4) What pastimes did Bhagavan Vasudeva perform in His different avataras? (5) Please describe the qualities and glories of Sri Hari. (6) Where did dharma take shelter when Sri Krsna returned to His own abode?

     All these rsis took shelter of Sri Suta Gosvami as guru, although they took birth in high-caste brahmana families, whereas he took birth in a lower caste. When they expressed their inquisitiveness to Sri Suta Gosvami in a simple-hearted way, this dearmost disciple of Sri Vedavyasa answered all their questions with gentle affection.  When they heard his answers, they all attained the supreme perfection. This is an example of an inquisitive (jijnasu) devotee. 

Siromani, Raghunatha - also known as Kanai Siromani or Kanabhatta; a contemporary of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and author of Didhiti, the famous nyaya commentary on the Tattvacintamani of Gangesopadhyaya. He was a student of Sri Vasudeva Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya in Navadipa. After completing his studies, he went to Mithila for some time and then returned to Navadipa to open his own school of nyaya. At that time Vasudeva Sarvabhauma was invited by King Prataparudra to come to Orissa to be the chief pandita in his court. As a result, Siromani became distinguished as the foremost scholar of nyaya in Navadvipa during his time. According to the Advaita-prakasa, Siromani desired that his Didhiti would become the most famous commentary on Tattvacintamani.  However, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu had written a commentary on Tattva-cintamani which surpassed the work of Siromani.  Seeing this, Siromani became despondent. In order to fulfill Siromani’s desire, Mahaprabhu threw His own commentary into the Ganga. Thereafter, Siromani’s commentary became celebrated as the pre-eminent commentary on Tattva-cintamani.

Siva - a qualitative expansion of Sri Krsna who supervises the material mode of ignorance, and who annihilates the material cosmos; one of the five deities worshiped by the pancopasakas. His name literally means auspicious. In the Brahma-samhita (5.45) it is described that Sri Krsna assumes the form of Lord Siva for the purpose of carrying out the material creation. In the Srimad-Bhagavatam (12.13.16) Siva is described as the best of all Vaisnavas: vaisnavanam

yatha sambhu.

Simantini-devi - is a name for Parvati, who at the instigation of her consort Lord Siva, desired to have darsana of Gauranga Mahaprabhu. Thus she went to see Him. After being blessed by Him she took His footdust and placed it on her simanta (hair parting).  Thus that place bwcame famous as Simanta-dvipa. Ignorant people call it Simuliya.

Sriman Mahaprabhu - a name for Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu (see Caitanya).

Sukadeva - the son of Badarayana Vyasadeva and speaker of the Srimad-Bhagavatam to Maharaja Pariksit. In Goloka-dhama, Krsna’s eternal abode in the spiritual world, he is the parrot of Srimati Radhika.

Sugriva - the monkey chieftain in the Rsya-muka mountain, who received Rama and Laksmana when they were searching for Sita.  He was the brother of Vali, who, due to a misunderstanding, was vehemently inimical toward him. After taking Rama’s help to kill his brother, he summoned the monkey army to assist Rama in conquering Ravana and recovering Sita. After the death of Ravana, Sugriva accompanied Rama and Laksmana on their return to Ayodhya.

Surabhi - a cow of divine origin. After Indra committed a grave offense against Sri Krsna by flooding Gokula with torrents of rain, he became very fearful, and thus he approached Surabhi for shelter, knowing cows to be most dear to Krsna. The two of them went to Navadvipa-dhama, knowing that Krsna would appear there in Kaliyuga as Sri Gauranga. By chanting Gauranga’s name, tears of love filled their eyes and they quickly attained the darsana of Gauranga.  The Lord assured them that they would attain His service when He would appear there. After He disappeared, Surabhi remained there beside a banyan tree, constantly serving the lotus feet of Gauranga by engaging in worship and bhajana.

Surya - the sun god; one of the five deities worshiped by the pancopasakas.

Svarupa Damodara - one of the most intimate associates of Sriman Mahaprabhu (Caitanya-caritamrta, Antya-lila 2.105-106). His previous name was Purusottama Acarya. After accepting sannyasa he received the name Svarupa Damodara. He accompanied Mahaprabhu to Puri and served Him constantly by reciting appropriate slokas to nourish His confidential moods. He recorded the activities of Sriman Mahaprabhu in the form of Sanskrit slokas, which later became the basis of Caitanya-caritamrta and other biographical works on the life of Sri Caitanya. In krsna-lila he is Lalita Sakhi.

Syama - (1) a name for Srimati Radhika, one who is absorbed in Syama (Sri Krsna), (2) a name for the Yamuna River, (3) a short name for Syamala, a sakhi friend of Sri Radha, (4) a form of Durga worshiped by tantrikas.


Tala - see Sapta-tala.


Uddharana Datta - a confidential associate of Nityananda Prabhu. He was born into a wealthy family of gold merchants in 1481 in the town of Saptagrama. His father and mother were Srikara Datta and Bhadravati. His wife was Mahamaya and his son was Srinivasa Datta Thakura. Uddharana Datta’s wife died when he was only twenty-six. After this he abandoned his wealth and family and wandered everywhere as a servant of Nityananda Prabhu. In krsnalila he was the cowherd boy known as Subahu, one of the dvadasagopalas of Vraja, the twelve intimate cowherd boyfriends of Krsna and Baladeva, who descended with Nityananda Prabhu (Gauraganoddesa-

dipika 129).


Vamsi-vadanananda - the son of Chakauri Cattopadhyaya. At birth, Srila Vamsi-vadanananda Thakura was given the name Vamsi or Vamsi dasa. He was also known as Vadana and Vadanananda. He was born in 1494 or, according to others, in 1505, and was regarded as an incarnation of Krsna’s flute. This was later confirmed in Sri Gaura-ganoddesa-dipika (179) – written approximately 1576 – the book of Srila Kavi Karnapura which reveals the identities of Mahaprabhu’s associates in krsna-lila.  The name Vamsi-vadana refers to Sri Krsna, the flute-player.  One who gives ananda (bliss) to Krsna by enabling Him to play on the flute and thus attract the beloved gopis to Him is known as Vamsi-vadanananda. Thus, although his birth name was simply Vamsi dasa, he came to be known as Vamsi-vadanananda Prabhu or Thakura. The names Prabhu and Thakura are titles of respect for great personalities.

Vasudeva - the indwelling Lord of all beings, Sri Krsna who resides everywhere and in all things. This word comes from the verbal root vas, to reside. In another sense it means the son of Vasudeva, derived from the Sanskrit verbal root vis to pervade; means the all-pervading and omnipotent one.

Visnu - the Supreme Lord of the cosmos who presides over the material mode of goodness; the supreme amongst the five deities worshiped by the pancopasakas.

Visnupriya - the second wife of Sriman Mahaprabhu. Bhagavan has three potencies known as sri, bhu, and nila. Sri Visnupriya Devi embodies the bhu potency. In krsna-lila she is Satyabhama (Gaura-ganoddesa-dipika 47-48). Her father was Sanatana Misra, who was King Satrajita in krsna-lila. After Mahaprabhu accepted sannyasa, Visnupriya engaged constantly in chanting hari-nama.  She would set aside one grain of rice for every round of hari-nama that she chanted. In the evening she would cook that rice and offer it to her Deity of Sri Gauranga. She would then give half to Saci Mata and eat the remainder.

Visnusvami - the head acarya of the Rudra sampradaya. He established the doctrine of suddhadvaitavada, purefied non-dualsim, in contrast to the impure doctrine of kevaladvaitavada, the impersonal interpretation of monism. The famous Vaisnava acarya, Sri Vallabha, established his conclusions on the basis of the philosophical principles laid down by Visnusvami. Vallabhacarya is said to be an incarnation of Visnusvami.

Visvambhara - a name for Caitanya Mahaprabhu which means one who maintains and nourishes the entire universe (see Caitanya).

Vrnda Devi - a confidential servant of Sri Sri Radha-Krsna. She is expert in making all arrangements for Radha-Krsna’s amorous pastimes in the kunjas of Vrndavana. She is the predominating goddess of the Vrndavana forest and her partial expansion is Tulasi-Devi. Sometimes the name Vrnda-Devi is used simply to refer to Tulasi-Devi.

Vyasadeva - a great sage and empowered incarnation of the Lord. He was also known as Badarayana, Dvaipayana, and Veda-Vyasa.  His father was Parasara and his mother was Satyavati. He was the step-brother of Vicitravirya and Bhisma. Because of the untimely death of Vicitravirya, Satyavati requested Vyasa to become the husband of Vicitravirya’s two childless widows. From the womb of Ambika, Dhrtarastra was born and from the womb of Ambalika, Pandu was born. He was also the father of Vidura by a servant girl. In addition, by his wife Arani, Vyasadeva was the father of the great sage Sri Sukadeva, who spoke the Bhagavata Purana to Maharaja Pariksit. Vyasadeva compiled and arranged the Vedas, Vedanta-sutra, the Puranas, the Mahabharata, and Srimad- Bhagavatam, and he also established the uttara-mimamsa system of philosophy.


Yadunandana - a name for Sri Krsna meaning one who appeared in the Yadu dynasty.

Yamalarjuna - the twin Arjuna trees. Formerly they were Nalakuvara and Manigriva, the sons of Kuvera, the treasurer of the devas in the heavenly planets. Once, intoxicated with sensuous desire and accompanied by many young ladies, Nalakuvara and Manigriva were sporting naked in the Mandakini river. The sage Narada Muni passed by at that moment. The ladies at once covered themselves in shame and fell at the feet of Narada to beg his forgiveness. However, Nalakuvara and Manigriva were so intoxicated that they took no notice of Narada. Seeing them bereft of all sense, Narada blessed them by cursing them to take birth as trees. Thus they were born as twin Arjuna trees in Gokula. When Bhagavan Sri Krsna appeared in Dvapara-yuga, He delivered them from the state of covered consciousness by touching them with His lotus feet.


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