Verse 27: Rasābhāsa

vaira-rasasya smaraṇe rādhyatve vā viṣayāśraya-bhede vā upamāyāṁ vā rasāntara-vyavadhānena vā varṇane sati na rasābhāsaḥ. anyathā tu paraspara-vairayor yadi yogas tadā rasābhāsaḥ. yadi parasparaṁ mitra-yogas tadā surasatā. mukhyānāṁ tu viṣayāśraya-bhede ’pi vaira-yoge rasābhāsa eva. evam adhirūḍha-mahābhāve kevalaṁ śrī-rādhāyāṁ tu vaira-yoge ’pi varṇana-paripāṭyāṁ na rasābhāsaḥ. kiṁ ca kṛṣṇo yadi svayam ekadaiva sarva-rasānāṁ viṣayo vā āśrayo vā tadāpi na rasābhāsaḥ. athānye ’pi rasābhāsāḥ kecit grāhya-prāyāḥ – śrī-kṛṣṇe yadi brahmataś camatkārādhikyaṁ na bhavati tadā śānta-rasābhāsaḥ. śrī-kṛṣṇāgre yadi dāsasyāti-dhārṣṭyaṁ bhavati tadā dāsya- rasābhāsaḥ, dvayor madhye ekasya sakhya-bhāvaḥ anyasya dāsya-bhāvas tadā sakhya-rasābhāsaḥ, putrādīnāṁ balādhikya-jñānena lālanādya-karaṇaṁ vātsalya-rasābhāsaḥ, dvayor madhye ekasya ramaṇecchānyasya nāsti prakaṭam eva sambhoga-prārthanaṁ vā tadojjvala-rasāhāsaḥ, śrī-kṛṣṇa-sambandha-varjjitāś cet hāsyā-dayas tadā te hāsyādi-rasābhāsāḥ, yadi śrī-kṛṣṇa-vairiṣu bhavanti tadā ati rasābhāsāḥ.

anadhīta-vyākaraṇaś caraṇa-
pravaṇo hare jano yasmāt
bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu-
binduto bindu-rūpeṇa

iti mahāmahopādhyāya-śrī-viśvanātha-cakravarti viracitaḥ bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu-binduḥ samāptaḥ.

Śrī Bindu-vikāśinī-vṛtti

In concluding, it is essential to understand rasābhāsa. There are several circumstances in which the combination of two incompatible rasas does not generate rasābhāsa: when an incompatible rasa is remembered (and thus not presently experienced); when a speaker describes an incompatible rasa as detrimental and by so doing praises the excellence of a particular rasa; when the āśraya or viṣaya of the incompatible gauṇa-rasa is different from that of the mukhya-rasa (this exception does not apply when two incompatible mukhya-rasas are combined); when there is comparison of two incompatible rasas; and when a neutral or compatible rasa intervenes between two opposing rasas. Otherwise when there is a combination of two incompatible rasas it results in rasābhāsa.

When two compatible rasas are combined it results in surasatā or an enhanced state of rasa. When any two incompatible mukhya-rasas are combined, even though the āśraya or viṣaya is different, it results in rasābhāsa. In the state of adhirūḍha-mahābhāva found only in Śrīmatī Rādhikā, when there is a combination of many different incompatible rasas, it does not result in rasābhāsa. When Śrī Kṛṣṇa Himself is the āśraya or viṣaya of all the rasas at the same time, there is no rasābhāsa. An example of Śrī Kṛṣṇa as the viṣaya of all twelve rasas at the same time is given in Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu (4.8.84):

daityācāryās tadāsye vikṛtim aruṇatāṁ malla-varyāḥ sakhāyo
gaṇḍaunnatyaṁ khaleśāḥ pralayam ṛṣigaṇā dhyānam uṣṇāsram ambāḥ
romāñcaṁ sāmyugīnāḥ kam api nava-camatkāram antaḥ sureśā-
lāsyaṁ dāsāḥ kaṭākṣaṁ yayur asitadṛśaḥ prekṣya raṅge mukundam

 

When the priests of Kaṁsa saw Śrī Kṛṣṇa enter the wrestling arena anointed with blood after killing the elephant Kuvalayāpīḍa their faces became contorted (bībhatsa). The faces of the wrestlers turned red with anger (raudra). The cheeks of Kṛṣṇa’s friends blossomed with joy (hāsya and sakhya). The wicked lost all consciousness as if on the verge of death (bhayānaka). The sages became absorbed in meditation (śānta). Devakī and the other mothers began to cry warm tears (vātsalya and karuṇa). The bodily hairs of the warriors stood on end (vīra). Indra and the other demigods experienced unprecedented astonishment within their hearts (adbhuta). The dāsya-bhaktas danced (dāsya), and the young girls cast sidelong glances (mādhurya).

An example of Śrī Kṛṣṇa as the āśraya of all twelve rasas at the same time is given in Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu (4.8.85):

svasmin dhurye ’py amānī śiśuṣu giridhṛtāv udyateṣu smitāsyas
thūtkārī dadhni visre praṇayiṣu vivṛta-prauḍhir indre ’ruṇākṣaḥ
goṣṭhe sāśrur vidūne guruṣu harimakhaṁ prāsya kampaḥ sa pāyād
āsāre sphāradṛṣṭir yuvatiṣu pulakī bibhrad adriṁ vibhur vaḥ

 

Although Śrī Kṛṣṇa supported the great weight of Govardhana, He was devoid of pride (śānta). He smiled when He saw that the small boys were prepared to hold up the hill (hāsya and vātsalya). He spat at the smell of musty yoghurt (bībhatsa). He displayed tremendous prowess to lift Govardhana in the presence of His beloved friends (sakhya and vīra). He looked at Indra with red eyes (raudra). Tears came to His eyes when He saw the residents of Vraja tormented by the powerful wind and rain (karuṇa). He trembled before His respectful elders on account of having spoiled the Indra yajña (dāsya and bhayānaka). His eyes widened at the torrential down- pour of water (adbhuta), and His hairs stood on end when He saw the young girls (mādhurya). May that Lord Giridhārī protect you.

Rasābhāsa has been defined in Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu (4.9.1) as follows:

pūrvam evānuśiṣṭena
vikalā rasa-lakṣmaṇā
rasā eva rasābhāsā
rasajñair anukīrtitāḥ

 

That which appears to be rasa but in which there is a deficiency or impropriety in any of the elements that comprise it is called rasābhāsa, a semblance of rasa, by those learned in the science of rasa.

The elements that compose rasa are sthāyibhāva, vibhāva, anubhāva, sāttvika-bhāva and vyabhicāri-bhāva. If any of these elements are missing or if there is an impropriety in any of them, then although the combination produced may have the appearance of rasa, it is but a semblance of rasa and is therefore known as rasābhāsa.

There are three gradations of rasābhāsa: (1) uparasa, (2) anurasa and (3) aparasa. These are known respectively as uttama, madhyama and kaniṣṭha.

  1. Uparasa
    If śānta or any of the twelve rasas are obtained by distortion of the sthāyibhāva, vibhāva, anubhāva or any of the other elements, it is called uparasa. Although there are many examples of this, we will give only one example for each of the five principal rasas.

    • (i) Śānta-uparasa – If one does not see any greater splendour in Śrī Kṛṣṇa who is the personification of Parabrahma than one does in nirviśeṣa-brahma, it becomes śānta-uparasa-rasābhāsa.
    • (ii) Dāsya-uparasa – If a servant displays excessive impudence in the presence of Śrī Kṛṣṇa, it becomes dāsya-uparasa-rasābhāsa.
    • (iii) Sakhya-uparasa – If amongst two friends one has the attitude of a friend and the other has the attitude of a servant, it becomes sakhya-uparasa-rasābhāsa.
    • (iv) Vātsalya-uparasa – If one does not endeavour to care for and protect one’s child because of awareness of his great strength, it becomes vātsalya-uparasa-rasābhāsa.
    • (v) Mādhurya-uparasa – If a nāyikā (heroine) desires a conjugal relationship with a nāyaka (hero), but he does not desire the same with her, or vice-versa, or if one of them openly solicits their conjugal union, it becomes mādhurya-uparasa-rasābhāsa.
  2. Anurasa
    If hāsya or any of the seven gauṇa-rasas and śānta-rasa is produced by ālambana-vibhāva, anubhāva or other elements that are devoid of a relationship with Śrī Kṛṣṇa, it becomes anurasa.
  3. Aparasa
    If Śrī Kṛṣṇa is the viṣaya and the enemies of Kṛṣṇa are the āśraya of hāsya or any of the gauṇa-rasas, it is known as aparasa. This is counted as an extreme case of rasābhāsa.

In concluding Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura says, “Those who have not studied the śāstras dealing with grammar but who are eager to serve the lotus feet of Śrī Hari, shall become attached as a drop (bindu) at His lotus feet by studying this Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu-bindu.”

Thus ends the translation of the commentary Śrī Bindu-vikāśinī-vṛtti to Śrī Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu-bindu.

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