Book excerpts Sri Guru Darsana WHY SHOULD WE GO ON PARIKRAMA?

WHY SHOULD WE GO ON PARIKRAMA?

Srila Gurudeva annually gathered the devotees from Matura and brought them to Navadvīpa for parikramā. Once, a brahmacārī asked Śrīla Gurudeva, “Why do we go on parikramā every year? I heard that in our line mānasī-sevā is the highest practice. So, is it necessary to do parikramā physically year after year? Why don’t we simply visit the holy places mentally?”
“Five material elements compose the physical body,” Śrīla Gurudeva answered. “These elements are governed by demigods.
If we do not take the body on parikramā and engage it in the service of Hari, Guru and Vaiṣṇavas at the holy places, we will remain indebted to the presiding deities of the elements in our bodies and will not be able to achieve salvation. During parikramā our bodies touch the dhāma and become purified, and we have the opportunity to serve the sādhus. Our bodies thence purified, the senses become favorable to the execution of devotional service. The nine limbs of devotion are naturally performed during parikramā. When we engage in bhakti, the demigods presiding over the elements of the body are pleased and discharge all debt. If we don’t engage our bodies in service, our senses will be agitated, and it is unlikely we will have the mental discipline to serve internally. Laziness is the worst malady. We must cure indolence by forcible engagement in service. For this reason we travel in sādhu-saṅga to all those places where Śrīman Mahāprabhu and Nityānanda Prabhu went with Their associates:
 
gaura āmāra, ye saba sthāne, karala bhramana raṅge
se-saba sthena, heriba āmi, praṇayi-bhakata-saṅge
 
‘In the company of devotees that have love for Gaurāṅga Mahāprabhu, I will visit the places where My Lord happily wandered.’
 
“Alone you cannot attain perfection. By going on parikramā in sādhu-saṅga, and smearing the dust of the holy places on your body, you will certainly receive the mercy of Śrī Guru, Kṛṣṇa, and the dhāma.
“The Guru-varga serve the dhāma by annually bringing the devotees together for parikramā. They teach us that parikramā of the dhāma must not only be done annually, but daily—no matter where we are physically. We learn from them that we must first offer praṇāmas to the Guru-varga when we wake in the early morning, chant our mantras, and also visit all the dhāmas, praying to Guru and Vaiṣṇavas, ‘Please let me stay nearby you. Without you I am a helpless orphan. Please do not reject me.’ You will always be with Guru and Vaiṣṇavas if you have this humble and prayerful mood.
“While chanting harināma, you should mentally go to Vraja-maṇḍala, Navadvīpa-maṇḍala, and Kṣetra-maṇḍala. Offer obeisance at each of the places within these dhāmas, and pray at those places, as well as to all the devotees and associates of Rādhā, Kṛṣṇa, and Mahāprabhu. Render service in the mind by sweeping, cleaning, and decorating the dhāma, and offer gifts to the Deities. By doing so, your mind will be present in the spiritual abodes and will not wander in the realm of illusion, māyāmaṇḍala.
“The dhāma cuts our relations with our temporary home and family, and awakens our relation with our eternal home and family. In truth, we are refugees in this world; like guests staying for some time in a boarding house—our material body. In these temporary dwellings we meet with many other refugees, whom we call our relatives. Inevitably however, death will come and all these relations will be lost. We must understand this bitter lesson. The duty of sādhus is to take the conditioned souls to the dhāma and connect them to Kṛṣṇa and His associates. is Navadvīpa-dhāma Parikramā has been going on continually from the time of Nityānanda Prabhu and Jīva Gosvāmī, to the time of Prabhupāda Sarasvatī Ṭhākura.
My Guru Mahārāja continued this tradition and that continuation runs on to this day. All branches of the Gauḍīya Maṭha perform Navadvīpa-dhāma Parikramā.”
In 1986, a massive celebration was held in Māyāpura for Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s fifth centennial. Millions of people came to Māyāpura from India and all over the world in the days before and after Gaura-pūrṇimā just for a chance to see the birthplace of Mahāprabhu. In preparation for all the people, the Bengal government set up temporary shelters, hand-pump wells, lights, and other facilities all around Māyāpura. The Indian Prime Minister granted 25 lākhas rupees for preparation and orchestration of the festival.
Each branch of the Gauḍīya Maṭha organized a party of many thousands for Navadvīpa Parikramā; the overall congregation of Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇavas was well over a hundred thousand adherents from all over India. The fifteen thousand strong Parikramā party of the Gauḍīya Vedānta Samīti, led by Śrīla Gurudeva and his dear godbrothers, Śrīla Bhaktivedānta Vāmana Gosvāmī Mahārāja, and Śrīla Bhaktivedānta Trikrama Gosvāmī Mahārāja, was the largest group.
ISKCON invited the Parikramā party of the Gauḍīya Vedānta Samīti to participate in their opulent celebrations at the Māyāpura Candrodaya-mandira on Jagannātha Miśra Mahotsava. Śrīla Gurudeva led the procession from Devānanda Gauḍīya Maṭha to Māyāpura, with dozens of other sannyāsīs and scores of brahmacārīs, all singing, playing instruments, and dancing ecstatically in saṅkīrtana. A hundred and eight mṛdaṅgas played in rhythm to the kīrtana of Mahāprabhu’s names and glories, and devotees carried 108 clay pots of paraphernalia for Mahāprabhu’s abhiṣeka. As the grand procession entered the Candrodaya-mandira’s gates, the devotees were welcomed with showers of flower petals from both sides.
Śrīla Gurudeva spoke in the temple room, glorifying Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja, and the specialty of Māyāpura and Mahāprabhu. Gurudeva concluded his speech saying, “The glories and specialties of Sri Guru are always present in the place that Vaiṣṇavas are welcome, and those who respect Vaiṣṇavas can experience the mercy of Śrī Guru. Those who serve and respect the family and disciples of Śrī Guru are true guru-sevakas. Today, the magnanimous disciples of Śrīla Bhaktivedānta Svāmī Mahārāja have conquered the world by their service to the Vaiṣṇavas.”
Thereafter, Śrīla Gurudeva offered puṣpāñjali to the deity of Śrīla Bhaktivedānta Svāmī Mahārāja, and then proceeded to Yogapīṭha with the Parikramā party. At midday, over 50,000 Mahāprabhu-bhaktas gathered in a field by Śrīdhara-āṅgana. Śrīla Gurudeva had arranged for the distribution of kicari, sweet rice, chutney, sabjis, and other varieties of prasāda, with generous help from Rāma Praka from Mathurā, Phuland from Āgrā, and other devotees.
Śrīla Gurudeva wrote an offering in Bengali for the auspicious occasion of Mahāprabhu’s fifth centennial was published in the Gauḍīya Patrikā—year 38, Issues 5-7, 1986. Śrīla Gurudeva began the article with the verse:
 
namo mahā-vadānyāya kṛṣṇa-prema-pradāya te
kṛṣṇāya kṛṣṇa-caitanya- nāmne gaura-tviṣe namaḥ
Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Madhya-līlā 19.53
 
I offer obeisance to the giver of kṛṣṇa-prema—the supremely magnanimous Śrī KṛṣṇaCaitanya, who is in fact Kṛṣṇa Himself endowed with the golden complexion of Śrīmatī Rādhikā.
 
Śrīla Gurudeva explained how this verse describes the essence of Mahāprabhu’s name, form, qualities, and pastimes. He also elaborated on how Mahāprabhu is the Supreme Personality, the selfsame Kṛṣṇa—not an incarnation, but the origin of all incarnations. Gurudeva substantiated his affirmation with numerous scriptural quotations:
 
kṛṣṇa-varṇaṁ tviṣākṛṣṇaṁ sāṅgopāṅgāstra-pārṣadam
yajñaiḥ saṅkīrtana-prāyair yajanti hi su-medhasaḥ
Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 11.5.32
 
‘In the Age of Kali, taking up the method of worship known as the saṅkīrtana-yajña, or the congregational chanting of the holy name, intelligent persons adore that incarnation of Godhead who constantly sings the name of Kṛṣṇa, whose complexion is fair, and who is accompanied by His associates, servants, weapons, and confidential companions.’
 
yadā paśyaḥ paśyate rukma-varṇaṁ
kartāram īśaṁ puruṣaṁ brahma-yonim
tadā vidyān puṇya-pāpe vidhūya
nirañjanaḥ paramaṁ sāmyam upaiti
Muṇḍaka Upaniṣad 3.2.3
‘When one sees the Golden Lord, the supreme doer and the source of brahma, he attains pure knowledge. He becomes cleansed of both pious and impious activities, he is freed from worldly bondage, and he enters the Lord’s most magnificent abode.’
 
Śrīla Gurudeva explained how the Supreme Lord is one without a second, in accordance with the aphorism of the Candogya Upaniṣadekaṁ-eva-dvitīyaṁ, and then how the essence of Bhagavān’s nature is His sweetness, or mādhurya, and most importantly, that this sweetness can only be realized by the living entities through the Lord’s compassion. The Lord’s compassion manifests in different ways in this world, as evidenced in the Bhagavad-gītā (4.7-8) wherein Kṛṣṇa details the circumstances in which He appears on Earth. Gurudeva then illuminated the three reasons for Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s advent and propounded that Mahāprabhu’s mercy is greater than all other incarnations. This he demonstrated with the following examples of Śrī Gaurahari’s boundless compassion.
Only Śrī Gaurahari gave bhakti freely to everyone—unlike His incarnations—and only He bestowed rāga-bhakti. Not only that, He was a paragon of how to practice bhakti. Mahāprabhu gave prema without taking into account the qualification of the living entities. Surrendering to His Mercy Potency, Śrīman Mahāprabhu told His karuṇā-śakti, “Karuṇā, I surrender unto you. In whichever direction you choose, however far you want to go, and to whatever place you want to travel, drown everyone—the offenders, the antagonists, the neutral, the faithful, the faithless, the ordinary devotees, and the special devotees—in a flood of prema.”
Sri Gaurahari desired earnestly to deliver all living beings, including all moving and inanimate beings. He did so without caring any weapon or taking anyone’s life. He did so by destroying the demoniac natures of the living entities and bestowing divine love upon them. Kṛṣṇa liberated the demons by destroying them and thereby relieved the burden of the Earth; however, Mahāprabhu freely gave prema, which is difficult even for Brahmā to attain.
He even gave prema to offenders. Mahāprabhu is therefore known as parama-karuṇā—supremely compassionate.
Sri Gaurahari relishes rasa to the greatest extent. Gaurahari tastes even that which Kṛṣṇa cannot—the ecstatic moods of Śrīmatī Rādhikā. Also, as only the Original Lord can, Śrī Gaurahari exhibited His various forms as different incarnations before His devotees who cherished Him, each in a particular manner.
Further exceptional qualities of Mahāprabhu’s compassion are: love for Kṛṣṇa awakens in the heart of one who chants the name of Gaurāṅga; there is no offense taken when chanting His names; one who surrenders to Gaurahari attains Śrī Kṛṣṇa; one who takes shelter of Gauḍa-maṇḍala achieves eternal residence in Vraja; one who dives into the ocean of gaura-prema will float in the waves of pure love for Śrī Śrī Rādhā-Mādhava; and by taking shelter of the associates of Mahāprabhu, one becomes a maidservant of Śrīmatī Rādhikā.
Śrīla Gurudeva closed his article with a discussion of parakīya-bhāva, describing  as the most sacred gift given by Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. Mahāprabhu extolled parakīya-bhāva above all else, and His apostles, the Gosvāmīs, elaborately delineated parakīya-rasa. In conclusion, Gurudeva gave a life sketch of Śrīman Mahāprabhu.
 
Srila Gurudeva ki Jaya! (Excerpted from the Bhaktabandhav book publication, “Sri Guru Darshan”. Available from: rasik@kripa.tv )

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CAN WE UNDERSTAND THE GOPI'S SEPARATION MOOD?

As soon as the gopis learned that Akrura was going to takeKrsna and Baladeva to Mathura, their hearts broke and theywere filled with unbearable anxiety. They knew what wouldfollow. “Take all our sweets and cows,” they exclaimed,“but do not take Krsna! This is worse than killing us.”Unaware that their garments had become disheveled andthat their bangles and other ornaments had broken orslipped from their bodies, the gopis entered a state ofdevastation so intense that Sukadeva Gosvami express toKing Pariksit that it was impossible for him to describe thatscene. The Vraja-devis became like lifeless statues, notbreathing or moving.The gopis whose hearts had already been stolen by Krsnastopped all sensory activity. As a flower that falls from thetree-branch becomes lifeless, similarly the gopis nowseemed deprived of their life-force.Somehow or another, they came to Nanda-bhavana. Theyknew Krsna would leave from that gate in the morning.“We will not let him leave,” they thought. At that time, theveil of secrecy that usually kept society blind to their deeplove for Krsna was gone and they began to cryuncontrollably. They became like a person deprived of hisgreatest treasure, or like mothers whose sons had just died.“O Creator,” they said, “how could You be so hard-hearted?What is this arrangement of Yours? Why are You killingus?”yas tvam pradarsyasita-kuntalavrtamMukunda-vaktram su-kapolam un-nasamsokapanoda-smita-lesa-sundaramkarosi paroksyam asadhu te krtamSrimad-Bhagavatam 10.39.20“Having shown us the face of Mukunda, framed by darklocks of hair and beautified by His shining cheeks, raisednose, and charming smiles, which destroy all misery, Youwill now make that face invisible to us. This behavior ofYours is not good at all.”The gopis were not worried that Krsna may be harmed byKamsa. That is not why they were distressed. They knewthat Krsna’s heart was very soft and that as soon asVasudeva and Devaki saw Krsna they would offer theiraffection and prayers to Him and not allow Him to everreturn. They knew this would come to pass.The gopis continued, “O Providence, although You havecome here with the name Akrura, You are actually cruel(krura). It seems You have lost all sense, for You are takingaway what You once gave us. You are depriving us of thesole meaning to our eyes’ existence. You are suggesting tous to look at anything other than Krsna.“This destroyer (Akrura) has come and done his work inmere moments. In just a second he has stolen our life awayfrom us. Tomorrow morning our lives will be devoid ofmeaning. The songs, sweet words, and dancing ofMathura’s girls will arrest Krsna and keep Him theirforever.”Nanda Baba announced in Vraja that everyone shouldprepare to go to Mathura with presentations for Kamsa.“We will attend the Dhanusa-yajna and offer our respects toSiva Thakura as well as the king. The yajna takes place onSiva Ratri in front of Rangesvara, and there will be manyfestivities. Krsna and Balarama have requested by the kingto wrestle in his presence.”All arrangements were being made but the gopis of Vrajaalone considered their lives finished. They doubted, in fact,they were sure, that Krsna would never return. Why didthey have this doubt? Were they astrologers? Did they readthe stars to see the future? Why did they think like this?Nanda Baba is in vatsalya-rasa. He did not doubt the waythe gopis did. Because the depth of the gopis love is greaterthan that of those in vatsalya-rasa, the gopis consideredthemselves already lifeless and felt that Krsna would neverreturn to them after going to Mathura.The gopis knew that Krsna and Baladeva were very softhearted.If anyone in Mathura were to just offer them alittle love and service then they will come under theircontrol. The gopis thought, “If you give Krsna anything Hisheart melts; even if its just a little bit of butter or misri. Hedances for such simple in joy and eagerness loving gifts. InMathura there is so much opulence. The Mathura-vasis willgive Krsna many nice things and He will be arrested.”Do the gopis mean to say that Krsna is greedy? Not exactly.Krsna is not attracted to any gift itself but to love. When agift is given as a representation of love, Krsna must acceptit.“We Vrajavasis have nothing,” the gopis went on, “onlysome fruits, flowers, leaves, and go-rasa. The Yadavas andthe residents of Mathura, have so much wealth and are alsovery tricky. In Mathura, there are many young girls who arebeautiful and clever. They will come close to Krsna andcontrol Him. We simple girls of the forest of Vraja offeredour hearts to Krsna and He accepted them, why then wouldHe not accept the hearts of more qualified and expertgirls?”The truth is that, wherever there is deep love, there isdoubt. This is not the fault of a person with love; this isnatural. For example, when a child goes to school and isonly a little bit late to return, his parents think, “There musthave been an accident! Perhaps he was kidnapped!” Theydoubt in this way. But why? Why do they automaticallythink something bad has happened? Why do they not thinkpositively? This is nature. This kind of doubt comes handin-hand with deep affection.“When the Bhojas, Andhakas, Vrsnis, and others see Krsnathey will certainly be overjoyed and put on a big festival.They will rejoice—while we die.”Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura comments thatbecause Mahalaksmi is unable to enter Vrndavana she waswaiting just outside the border. The gopis thought that assoon as Krsna left Vrndavana, she would definitely make ahuge drama. With millions of different attractive svarupasshe will endeavor to steal Krsna’s heart. She sees Him asher Narayana, in whose heart she always resides.Laksmi-devi had been unable to accept Krsna’s conditionswhen she begged for entrance into Vrndavana. She couldnot tolerate the idea of being born from the womb of agopi, marrying a gopa, and becoming a servant of cows.But now her chance to meet with Krsna was coming. Thegopis said, “She has been waiting a long time for this. Shewill surely have many duplicitous plans and svarupas ofladies to enter His heart and arrest Him.”If people offer themselves to Krsna, Krsna accepts them.He cannot refuse them. This is His weakness. He evenaccepted the witch Putana as a mother. She offered herbreast milk to Him with the intention of poisoning Him, butdespite her ill-intentions, Krsna accepted that as service andgave her a permanent position and seva in relation to Him.Now Laksmi will steal Krsna from us, and such is ourmisfortune that we do not have any power born of tapa oryoga to protect ourselves from this robbery.”maitad-vidhasyakarunasya nama bhudakrura ity etad ativa darunahyo 'sav anasvasya su-duhkhitam janampriyat priyam nenyati param adhvanahSrimad-Bhagavatam 10.39.26That merciless Akrura should not be called Akrura (notcruel), for he is in fact so cruel (krura) that without evenattempting to console the sorrowful Vrajavasis, he is takingKrsna, who is more dear to us than our very lives, awayfrom us.“O hard-hearted Akrura, you are rendering us shelterlessand indeed taking our lives. You are stealing our heart,intending to present it to Kamsa. No one is more cruel thanyou. We cannot revolt against Nanda Baba’s arrangement,so you must be sure to bring Krsna back. If you fail to dothis, then mark our words, you will realize our pain. Thefire in our hearts will continuously burn you. You willnever feel well for as long as you live. This pain that youare giving us today will come to you and will drive youmad. We are not just one or two gopis, we are millions. Youwill feel the pain of each and every one of us.”“Alas! Look! Krsna is already seated on the chariot, and thebullock carts of the cowherd men are following behind.What has happened to their intelligence? Why are theelders letting this happen? Have they gone mad? They willnot be able to bring Him back. They do not realize this.Indeed the creator is against us. Just see how Krsna’sfriends, headed by Sridama, are accompanying Him. Theydo not know that he won’t come back. They do not knowthat this Vraja-mand ala will burn in the fire of our pain.Nothing here can remain without our Vraja-jivana.”The gopis were normally shy and would never approachKrsna in front of everyone, but they decided now to all gobefore Him and stop Him from going. “If we cannot stopHim, then at least we will have seen Him this one last time.If we do not see Him in the last moments of our life thenwe will not be able to be with Him in our next life.”“We must stop Him,” they thought. Then they surroundedthe chariot on which Krsna-Baladeva and Akrura wereseated and pleaded with Krsna to not to leave them. Theycast off all fear of what society would think of them. Theydid not care if the consequence for such behavior waspunishment or criticism. This is called anuraga.Who can explain the suffering of the gopis at this time. Thesame Krsna used to smile at them as they crossed paths. Atthose times, He would give them hints about the agreedplace where He would meet with them. Today, here.Tomorrow, there. He enjoyed rasa with them for an entirenight of Brahma, and He had many other loving exchangeswith them in Vraja-mandala’s many caves and groves andby the waterfalls and streams. How was it possible thattoday this would all be over? How could this relationshipbe broken? How could life ever return to them? How couldthey ever speak with anyone apart from Him? When theirlives and hearts were completely filled with love for Krsna,how could they tolerate Him leaving them?yo 'hnah knaye vrajam Ananta-sakhah paritogopair visan khura-rajas-churitalaka-srakvenum kvanan smita-katakna-niriknanenacittam kninoty amum rte nu katham bhavemaSrimad-Bhagavatam 10.39.30“How can we survive without that friend of Ananta, Krsna, who, in the company of the cowherd boys, would return to Vraja in the evening, His hair and flower-garland covered with the dust raised by hooves of the cows? 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WHY WILL WE ALWAYS SUFFER IF WE DON'T COLLECT THIS BHAKTI RASA?

Vilāpa-kusumāñjali 8 O Devī, please rescue this unfortunate person drowning in an ocean of pain. Place him on the strong boat of Your mercy and carry him to the wonderful realm of Your lotus feet.He says, “O Rādhe! I am not merely sad, I have fallen in the ocean of distress where I am burning in separation. I don’t know how to come out. Be merciful upon me, send a boat to help and carry me across this ocean to Your lotus feet. They are my all and all. Please bring me close to Your lotus feet. Otherwise, for millions of lives I take shelter of ordinary people, but they don’t accept me. They only kick me. O Rādhike, You are my life and soul. Please give me shelter. This will be my permanent post and service. Otherwise, I have no power.”Rādhārānī may say, “Oh, why are you sad? Why are you disturbed? Why are you crying?”“O Devī! Before, I had no knowledge that this world is a prison. Many cruel animals are present who are always cheating me, stealing my life. They appear like friends but they only steal my life, time, and energy. They make me perform bad karma, sending me away from bhakti and God.“By the mercy of Caitanya Mahāprabhu and Guru-pāda-padma, I have realized this and come here. Without Your mercy it is not possible to cross over this mundane world. I cannot cross beyond this attachment. If I have no protection and shelter, then I would be forced to go back. If You don’t give taste and relation, then I would have to go to others and work constantly for their pleasure.“I have no shelter. Without You I am very small. Your lotus feet are very wonderful. Many millions and millions of siddha-sevakas are present there.“Please give me a small place there as well. I will sit by Your lotus feet and Your sevakas will teach and guide me.”In the ninth verse Dāsa Gosvāmī prays: tvad-alokana-kalāhi-daṁśair eva mṛtaṁ janamtvat-padābja-milal-lakṣa-bheṣajair devi jīvayaVilāpa-kusumāñjali 9 O Devī, with the medicine of the red lac from Your lotus feet, please bring back to life this person now dead from the bites of the black snake of not seeing You. “O Devī, I can’t see You. The serpent of time is stealing away my life. It bites me and injects me with poison. I can’t protect myself. By its poison I am suffering and feeling so much pain. O Devī! Tat-padābjam, Your lotus feet are like life-giving medicine. Please give me life and strength, so that I may return to You. Now I am wounded, as if dead by the influence of mahā-kāla. Poisonous snakes always come and bite me. Babies go to their mother and father, who take them in their lap, and kiss and play with them. With all types of love and affection, relatives poison us and keep us disconnected from our soul and the Supreme Soul. These family members are the soldiers of time.“O Devī, Your lotus feet are covered with reddish kuṁkum. Please give me a particle of kuṁkum from Your feet. This medicine will cure the material disease and bestow anurāga.”Caitanya Mahāprabhu covered Himself with this anurāga. In Anurāga-vallari, Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura wrote that in the early morning Śrīmatī Rādhārānī watched many pulina-kanyās going to collect dry wood and cow dung. They saw Kṛṣṇa’s foosteps and kuṁkum on the grass. Where did this come from? The Vraja-devīs put Kṛṣṇa’s feet on their breasts that are smeared with kuṁkum and that kuṁkum becomes imprinted on the grass when Kṛṣṇa walks through the forest. The pulina-kanyās place this kuṁkum on their heads and chests. Śrīmatī sees this and says, “How much love they have for this Kṛṣṇa!”Caitanya-candra wore cloth the reddish color of this anurāga. He said, “I always keep the Vraja-devīs’ footdust with Me. This footdust is their anurāga.”This anurāga color is medicine that treats our material condition. How can hṛd-roga, lust, go? Dāsa Gosvāmī Prabhu says, “If you take a little bit of this footdust and smear it on your body and pray to that dust, then your hṛd-roga will go away. The serpents of time will no longer bite you. Even if you can’t bring Her feet directly in your heart, if you can collect a little of this kuṁkum and place it in your heart, then that will cure you and bring you to Vraja-dhama.”Some people say, “I have no time, when can I chant? I will chant later. I will serve later.” This is the poisonous effect of kāla-sarpa, the serpents of time. If you want to be saved from these serpents, then you must take shelter of the Vraja-devis’ foot dust.vande nanda-vraja-strīṇāṁ pāda-reṇum abhīkṣṇaśaḥyāsāṁ hari-kathodgīrṇaṁ punāti bhuvana-trayam Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 10.47.63 I constantly glorify the dust of the feet of the women of Nanda’s cowherd pastures. Their chanting of the activities of Śrī Kṛṣṇa purifies the entire universe. Brahmā and Uddhava pray like this. This dust is available. Why don’t you take it? You don’t have the desire. How can desire come? For that desire you must worship Śrīmatī Rādhārānī’s lotus feet.Śrīla Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura sings: rādhikā-caraṇa-renu, bhūṣaṇa koriyā tanuanāyāse pābe giridhārīrādhikā-caraṇāśraya, je kore se mahāśayatāre moi jāo bolihārī Ornament your body with the dust of Śrīmatī Rādhikā’s lotus feet and you will easily attain Giridhārī. I congratulate such a great soul who takes shelter of Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī’s lotus feet.jaya jaya rādhā-nāma vṛndāvana jāra dhāmakṛṣṇa-sukha vilāsera nidhiheno rādhā guṇa gāna, na sunilo mora kānavañcito korilo more vidhi All glories, all glories to She whose name is Rādhā, whose divine abode is Vṛndāvana, and who is a treasury of pastimes that bring joy to Kṛṣṇa. Alas! If my ears have not heard Rādhā’s glories, then destiny has cheated me. Everything we sing, we sing without desire to accept. We sing, pray, and pass our time, and then run another way. Why? We have no desire to accept this.Dāsa Gosvāmī Prabhu says, “Color yourself from top to bottom with this kuṁkum. Then nothing else can touch or disturb you.”If we don’t read the Gosvāmīs’ books, like this Vilāpa-kusumāñjali, how can we understand what process the Gosvāmīs left for us? How can we cross māyā? How can we collect bhakti-rasa? Without this, our lives pass uselessly. If we only cry and think about the negative, what benefit will come to us? We accept nothing positive. We will be weak if we take no food and have no rasa. Vaidhī-mārga is not useless, but who can actually follow all rules and regulations? Those who have anurāga follow all rules and regulations naturally. They come everyday to maṅgala-āratī to serve in niśānta-līlā. There is no need to bang on their doors and shout, “Wake up!” They naturally follow everything with anurāga. Vaidhī-mārga followers do everything by force. If sometimes they are sick, then how can they follow? This anurāga is the only thing necessary for strength in bhajana. devi te caraṇa-padma-dāsikāṁ         viprayoga-bhara-dāva-pāvakaiḥdahyamānatara-kāya-ballavīṁ     jīvaya kṣaṇa-nirīkṣaṇāmṛtaiḥVilāpa-kusumāñjali 10 O Devī, with the nectar of a moment’s glance, please restore the life of this maidservant of Your lotus feet, who now burns in the great forest-fire of separation from You. What does Devī mean? In the transcendental realm of Vṛndāvana-dhāma, You control Śrī Kṛṣṇa with Your over-world-power-love and keep Him always near You, thus You are Devī.“O Devī, I am burning; my body, mind, and senses—everything is burning. Everywhere I look there is only fire, dryness, and ashes. Please cool me with the nectar from Your lotus feet. Śiva Ṭhākura sits in a crematorium and smears his body with ashes, saying, ‘In this world there is only fire and ash, fire and ash.’ O Devī, this world is a forest-fire and my body is like a burning creeper. I am a very small dāsī at Your lotus feet. Kṛpā kaṭākṣa bhājanam—please just o nce grace me with Your merciful glance. If You don’t look at me and take care of me, then everyone will come with fire and attack me, saying, ‘Hey, don’t do this, do what I am telling, follow me.’ The government, educators, parents, friends, and the so-called gurus and ācāryas—everyone in this world smashes us and squeezes out our life. They like to take all our time and life. But they don’t say, ‘Follow this line of the Gosvāmīs; this is good for you.’ ”When a goat or pig is young and healthy, everyone is ready to check, “How much does it weigh? How tasty will it be?” The fire of peoples’ desires burns us. People are always ready to attack and digest us.Dāsa Gosvāmī says, “Kṛṣṇa is transcendental. He is in my heart, but I can’t meet with Him because I am surrounded by fire. How can I cross this fire and go to meet with Kṛṣṇa? It is not possible. I am burning in my desire-fire, lust-fire, anger-fire, and so many other fires. I collect fire from all others; they give me this by force. Also, I am sentimental and sensitive—this is one fire. Even worse is the fire of pratiṣṭhā, greed for name and fame. O Devī, if these fires aren’t vanquished, I will not be able to cross beyond this fearsome world and reach You. I have been burning, burning, burning for millions of lives. Now I have only a little time left. I cannot tolerate this torment any longer. Without Your merciful glance, I will be burnt to ashes and destroyed. Please give me Your kṛpā-kaṭākṣa-bhājanam, without which I cannot cross over this fearsome world.“This body that You gave is always demanding attention and wants me to be its slave. It is a vortex of fire in which I am always burning. I desire to engage my body always as an instrument of Your service. But these fires are burning me and keep me from serving You. In a forest there are many big trees. Sometimes, when wind rubs them against each other, fire is generated. This fire burns the whole forest down. Similarly, mundane people have fire and they steal us away from bhakti and bhajana. This is like a forest-fire. How can I protect myself from the fires of this world? I don’t know. Please help me.“Your darśana is not possible for me. I can’t see you, but You can see me. Please give me Your glance of mercy, otherwise I cannot cross over this world and go to You." svapne ‘pi kiṁ sumukhi te caraṇāmbujāta-        rājat-parāga-paṭavāsa-vibhūṣaṇenaśobhāṁ parām atitarām ahahottamāṅaṁ        bibhrad bhaviṣyati kadā mama sārtha-nāmaVilāpa-kusumāñjali 11 O beautiful-faced one, when, even in a dream, will I, by decorating my head with the splendid perfumed powder of Your lotus feet, attain the goal of my life? (Click on the Title to see more)

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