On 4 January 1962, paramaradhya Srila Gurudeva came with his associates to the Samiti’s branch matha in Mathura. There he preached Sriman Mahaprabhu’s message extensively for a week. He then proceeded to Jaipura, the capital of Rajasthan, at the repeated request of some distinguished residents of that city. For a week he lectured in Hindi and English in different assemblies, associations and temples, speaking about the spotless vaisnava-dharma and sanatana-dharma that Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu had taught and practised. He explained very clearly to the general public that sri harinama-sankirtana is easy and simple, and is the only way to attain Bhagavan, especially in Kali-yuga.
A huge assembly was organized in the local Sri Radha-Krsna temple. The city’s distinguished scholars and masters of literature attended, and Srila Gurudeva gave a brilliant lecture on sri nama-tattva. The famous Hindi scholars, Sri Kamalakara Kamala and pandita Sri Krsnacandraji (kavya-vyakarana-tirtha, sahityacarya) were greatly impressed by Srila Acaryadeva’s lecture. Even though both were initiated acaryas in Sri Vallabhacarya’s pusti-marga, they came to hear vaisnava-tattva from Srila Acaryadeva. Srila Gurudeva told them that Sri Vallabhacarya met Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu twice. The first time was in Adaila-grama near Prayaga, and the second time was in Sri Puri-dhama. Sri Vallabhacarya’s son, Sri Vitthaladeva, had a close and affectionate friendship with Sri Rupa, Raghunatha and the other Gosvamis.
Both Sri Kamalakara ‘Kamala’ and Sri Krsnacandraji maintained a connection with Sri Kesavaji Gaudiya Matha throughout their life. They kept an affectionate friendship with me [the author], and their poems and essays were published in Sri Bhagavata-patrika.
After preaching vaisnava-dharma extensively like this for a month in Mathura and Jaipura, Acarya Kesari returned to Sri Uddharana Gaudiya Matha, Chunchura, on 9 February.
Establishing a Samiti preaching centre in Orissa
Bhadraka is a famous place within the Balesvara district in Orissa. Nearby, on the bank of the river Salindi, is the sacred village Koranta, where the majority of the residents are highly educated and prominent governmental officials. In this village, there is a temple of Sri Gopalaji whose priest was Sri Lala Mohana Mahapatra. Unable to perform the temple seva, he offered the temple and its adjoining agricultural land to the Samiti’s president, Srila Acaryadeva, and it was duly registered in the court. Srila Acaryadeva named this new branch Sri Gopalaji Gaudiya Preaching Centre. After some time Sri Gopalaji was moved from inside the village to an extensive temple, which was constructed on a large piece of land on the main road. An assembly hall and residential quarters for the sevakas were also built. Sri Gopalaji is now worshipped in this temple.
Koranta village is situated two-and-a-half miles north of Bhadraka town. Sri Bhaktivinoda Thakura composed his famous Sri Krsna-samhita here while serving as sub-divisional officer (SDO) in Bhadraka. He has mentioned in his poetic work Vijana-grama : “kimva na rahili kena salindira kule, yathaya pathika-gana asvatthera mule, kataya atapa-tapa niscinta antare – On the bank of Salindi there is a pipal tree, under whose shade travellers get relief from the scorching heat of the sun.” When the preaching centre was established there, Srila Acaryadeva said, “We will reside in Sri Gopalaji Gaudiya Preaching Centre and have the good opportunity to remember Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura’s pure character and devotional instructions.”
This matha is situated only two furlongs from Vaudapura station, the next station after Bhadraka railway station. The road for vehicles there is also very good. The atmosphere is very captivating. The Samiti offers its heartily thanks to Sri Mahapatra Mahasaya and his family for establishing this preaching centre for the propagation of suddha-bhakti.
Preaching suddha-bhakti in Jaipura
On 29 August 1962, Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja arrived with some brahmacaris at Sri Kesavaji Gaudiya Matha in Mathura, where they stayed for fifteen days. Local educated people came to hear Srila Acaryadeva, as did several research scholars from the universities at Aligarha and Agra. All were very pleased to hear his philosophical conceptions. Srila Acaryadeva had established an extensive library in Sri Kesavaji Gaudiya Matha and from time to time these scholars borrowed books favourable for their research.
Paramaradhyatama Srila Acaryadeva also gave lectures in the temple room (natya-mandira) at Sri Kesavaji Gaudiya Matha. When the Mathuravasis heard his impressive philosophical conceptions on suddha-bhakti, they gradually became his followers. Tridandi-svami Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Maharaja [the author], the manager of the matha, devoted himself to caring for paramaradhyatama Srila Gurupada-padma and the brahmacaris accompanying him.
On 4 September 1962, Srila Gurudeva arrived in Jaipura with his group of followers and stayed at the main office of the Jaipura Halvai Samiti, at the special request of the president, Setha Somilalaji. Pandita Sri Krsnacandra Sastri Mahodaya (kavya-tirtha, sahitya-ratna) organized an eminent assembly on the premises of his Sri Radha-Krsnaji temple on Sri Radhastami evening. Paramaradhya Srila Gurudeva gave a Hindi lecture which was full of siddhanta, establishing the usefulness of sabda-brahma, transcendental sound, as compared to useless mundane sound. The Vedas establish that only sri harinama is sabda-brahma. And in all Vedas and other scriptures the sad-guru, the expert who has realized Bhagavan, bestows the transcendental sabda-brahma in the pure ear of the sat-sisya. This sabda-brahma is not created by air interacting with the throat or palate. Rather,
na bhaved grahyam-indriyaih
sevonmukhe hi jihvadau
svayam eva sphuratyadah
The human material senses cannot perceive sri harinama because it is a transcendental sound. It will appear by itself on the pure senses of the sevon-mukha sadhaka, the practitioner in whose heart the desire to serve Sri Krsna has arisen.
In Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu (1.2.231) the nature of sri nama is described thus:
nama cintamanih krsnas- caitanya-rasa-vigrahah
purnah suddho nitya-mukto ’bhinnatvan nama-naminoh
Sri krsna-nama is a transcendental wish-fulfilling gem (cintamani ), because krsna-nama (Krsna’s name) and nami (Krsna Himself) are non-different. This name is the very form of transcendental mellows (caitanya-rasa-svarupa). It is complete, beyond illusion and eternally liberated.
Sac-cid-ananda rasa-maya tattva, the transcendental nectar-filled Truth, is non-dual, but this advaya-tattva has appeared in two forms, vigraha and nama. Only through service to sabda-brahma, that is, through pure nama-sankirtana, can the living being be established in his real svarupa and remain eternally devoted serving the Divine Couple.
Ordinary sound is that which appears as a result of air interacting with the throat, palate, teeth, etc. It is uttered by one who does not have the shelter of a bona fide guru or the guidance of transcendental literature. This ordinary sound cannot bring about any good fortune for the conditioned souls (baddha-jivas). The genuine sastras have profusely glorified sabda-brahma. Srila Acaryadeva used Vedanta-darsana and other evidence to establish the speciality and super-excellence of sabda-brahma.
After that, the honourable head (mahantaji) of the famous Sri Govindadeva temple in Jaipura organized a scholarly assembly there and Srila Gurudeva delivered a brilliant lecture on sri radha-tattva, sri krsna-tattva and the astonishing nature of Sri Sri Radha-Krsna Yugala’s pastimes. The audience was very attracted to Srila Acaryadeva’s unprecedented sastric and siddhantic conceptions. They could understand something of the deep philosophy of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and the Vaisnava acaryas in His line.
Gradually it became known throughout the whole of Jaipura that a Gaudiya Vaisnava acarya, who was an erudite philosopher and most knowledgeable in siddhanta, was visiting the city from Sri Navadvipa-dhama. The current principal of Jaipura’s Maharaja Sanskrit College was mahamahopadhyaya Sri Candrasekhara Dvivedi Vyakarana-acarya (sankhya-yoga-vedanta-tirtha). He later accepted sannyasa in the Sankara sampradaya and was given the post of sankaracarya, the person in charge of the matha in the Sankara sampradaya, in Sri Govardhana Matha in Puri. He very respectfully invited Srila Acaryadeva to preside at a huge scholastic assembly that he organized at his college. The assembly was attended by various college professors, students and honourable and faithful citizens. In his erudite lecture Srila Acaryadeva quoted evidence from the Vedas and other scriptures to establish Vrajendra-nandana Sri Krsna as aksara-brahma, the imperishable Supreme Truth.
After that he spoke on ‘The duty of human life’. He compared modern democracy – wherein everyone, whether intelligent or foolish, can vote, and also be elected minister – to Ganesa, who is considered foolish because he does not know who his father is. Quoting arupavadeva tat-pradhanatvat and other aphorisms from Vedanta-sutra, he refuted nirakara-vada and established the Lord as sakara, having form. He also impressed his audience by revealing the conclusion that bhakta (the devotee) and Bhagavan exist eternally, being beyond the limit of time and place.
The honourable principal of the college praised Srila Acaryadeva’s Vedantic viewpoints and thanked him profusely. He also advised the students and society at large to accept Srila Acaryadeva’s spiritual instructions. He said that he would like to organize a conference for all sampradayas, which would facilitate a discussion comparing the Gaudiya Vedanta commentary with other commentaries on Vedanta.
The Samiti gave special thanks to Setha Somilalaji, Sri Omprakasa Vrajavasi Sahityaratna and Sri Jagadisa Prasadaji Gupta, the director of Laksmi Motor Company, for all the service rendered while Srila Acaryadeva was preaching suddha-bhakti in Jaipura.
Srila Acaryadeva’s auspicious desire for Sri Gaudiya Vedanta Catuspathi
In 1957, Sri Gaudiya Vedanta Samiti established a Sanskrit school called Sri Gaudiya Vedanta Catuspathi in Bospada Lane, Bagbazar, Kolkata. Modern universities do not attach proper significance to the Sanskrit language, and as a result, students are not learning it. If such an ignorant attitude towards Sanskrit (deva-bhasa, the language of the gods) persists, the bhagavat ideology, which is the life of Indian culture, will undoubtedly soon disappear.
The Bengali language has been respected as pre-eminent among all languages in India, because its literature is derived from Sanskrit literature exclusively. Unfortunately, nowadays, Bengali is becoming disconnected from its relationship with Sanskrit. The present atheistic society in Bengal wants to eradicate Hindu dharma, but they know very well that Hindu dharma cannot be destroyed while Bengali is connected to Sanskrit. Therefore the managers of the modern universities want to make Bengali a ravindriya-karana language (i.e. a language as simple as that used by Ravindra Tagore), by separating Bengali from Sanskrit literature and grammar. In this way, by removing the combined letters [typical of Sanskrit], which are difficult to read, a very simple language is created, but it is a common man’s language and low-class. One should understand that this is disrespectful of Sanskrit and ignorant of the line of thought presented in India’s Vedas, Upanisads, Puranas and other traditional, spiritual teachings.
The devotees of Sri Gaudiya Vedanta Samiti reflected for a long time on this deplorable situation in Bengal, and indeed in the whole of India. To disseminate Sanskrit education they established the Sri Gaudiya Vedanta Catuspathi in Chunchura. Later this was transferred to Sri Devananda Gaudiya Matha in Sri Dhama Navadvipa. Sri Gaudiya Vedanta Samiti formed a committee to satisfactorily manage the catuspathi. The committee members are as follows:
- Chairman: om visnupada paramahamsa-svami parivrajakacarya-varya Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami
- Secretary: tridandi-svami Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Vamana Maharaja
- Member: tridandi-svami Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Trivikrama Maharaja
- Member: tridandi-svami Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Maharaja [the author]
- Member: Sriyuta Sacindra Mohananandi (chairman of the Navadvipa City Council)
- Member: Sriyuta Jitendranatha (panca-tirtha)
- Member: pandita Sri Nimai Carana (vyakarana-tirtha)
- Member: pandita Sriyuta Suresacandra Raya (vyakarana-tirtha)
- Member: pandita Sri Vrajananda Vrajavasi
In previous years, many catuspathi students passed the examination of the Bengal Sanskrit Literature Association (Bangiya Sanskrta Sahitya Parisad) with great distinction. This year, 1963, the honourable Sri Jitendranatha Panca-tirtha (kavya-vyakarana-purana-vedanta-vaisnava-darsana-tirtha) is managing the Catuspathi very earnestly and enthusiastically. In a short time, Sri Gaudiya Vedanta Catuspathi has become glorious throughout Navadvipa.
This year, a new teacher, pandita Nimai Carana Vyakarana-tirtha Mahasaya, has been appointed because the number of students has increased. The students read and study poetry (kavya), grammar (vyakarana) and Vedanta, and this year, seven of them have taken examinations at primary, medium and degree level. We respectfully offer Sanskrit students an education by qualified teachers in this exemplary catuspathi. I am also humbly informing you that this Sanskrit school particularly emphasizes classes in Sri Harinamamrta-vyakarana. Facility for boarding and lodging is also available for students of Sri Harinamamrta-vyakarana. Such students may send their application forms together with their credentials to the secretary of the catuspathi, tridandi-svami Bhaktivedanta Vamana Maharaja.
The opinion of the Sanskrit school supervisor regarding Sri Gaudiya Vedanta Catuspathi
“The inspection of Sri Gaudiya Vedanta Catuspathi took place today. Two teachers, the secretary and ten students were present. Currently there are twelve students enrolled in the catuspathi, which teaches poetry (kavya, the Gosvami’s writings), Sri Harinamamrta-vyakarana (Srila Jiva Gosvami’s book teaching Sanskrit grammar), Vedanta, vaisnava-darsana and other sastras. The respected principal is a panca-tirtha (master of these five subjects), and a very diligent teacher. An assistant teacher has been appointed because the number of students has increased.
“According to the register, the catuspathi has twelve or thirteen resident students. This is something to be happy about and proud of. The managing committee applied for government approval a long time ago, but to this day, approval has not been given.
“The catuspathi’s examination result is not lower than the previous year’s, and the records are being accurately kept as before. I wish this catuspathi all prosperity and progress.”
(additional) inspector of West
Bengal Sanskrit school system
19 December 1963