Hari-katha inspired by the Guru-varga
We are now reading and hearing from Sri Srimad Caitanya Caritamrita, 2nd Canto, and 9th chapter. Caitanya Mahaprabhu is in South India and is discussing cit-tattva with Ramananda Raya. He is not discussing jada-tattva or jiva-tattva with him. Mahaprabhu is directly discussing cit-tattva with him that consists of samvit, sandhini, and hladini-sakti. In this world, if anyone is too attached then he is not only wasting time, a lair is coming for him. If you look, touch, or think about family, animal, or anything, then what you think about will not go without giving a fruit. It will surely give you a fruit—karma. There is ku-karma, akarma, vikarma, sat-karma—everything will give you some fruits. It is not possible to remove these fruits because this lair is very strong. Therefore, when Caitanya Mahaprabhu discussed with Ramananda Raya, He spoke of many goals as useless and bogus.
He said, “There is no need to even think about this.”
If paramartha is also with these mundane things, than this is anartha and not paramartha. If you are attached even a little to wife, children, husband, family, and any material things, then you will not just lose one life, you will lose millions of lives. How can you remove this attachment to the body? Therefore, you should use your time for obtaining paramartha. When you taste aprakrta-rasa, you will have no more taste for mundane things. You will have no taste for eating, sleeping, looking, and talking. You will have no more taste for rupa, rasa, sparsa, gandha, and sabdha, which are form, taste, touch, smell, and sound respectively. You will have no taste for any material thing by drinking that rasa even a little bit. So, Mahaprabhu is trying to give the jivas this transcendental rasa: bhakti-rasa, vraja-rasa, cit-rasa. He didn’t discuss any mundane things with Ramananda Raya Prabhu for even one minute.
A person approached Gurudeva and said, “Gurudeva, now I have a desire to start a family. I want to take care of my parents and grandparents. They will be helpful for my bhakti.”
Gurudeva replied, “Act according to your choice. I cannot give you an order. Why should I kick you and throw you away into the hellish planets? If you want to start your journey to hell, why should I push you further?”
So, Mahaprabhu very strongly followed what Raya Ramananda Prabhu said. Also, at the last moment Mahaprabhu said, “Dasya, sakhya, and vatsalya-rasa are also not helpful. Only if you are connected to the main power, then these rasas are helpful.
radha-krsnera lila ei ati gudhatara
dasya-vatsalyadi-bhave na haya gocara
–Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya 8.202
“The pastimes of Radha and Krsna are very confidential. They cannot be understood through the mellows of servitude, fraternity or parental affection.”
sabe eka sakhi-ganera ihan adhikara
sakhi haite haya ei lilara vistara
–Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya 8.203
“Actually, only the gopis have the right to appreciate these transcendental pastimes, and only from them can these pastimes be expanded.”
If you have no power of digestion, then regardless of anything you take, you will still be sick. If you have the power to digest, then there is no problem. But where will this power come from? You are cut from the line; you are not attached to this supreme powerhouse, Svarupa-sakti. Therefore, Mahaprabhu said that if there is no relation with Svarupa-sakti or Her expansions, or with srngara-rasa or madhura-rasa, then you will not get any sweetness. You will run here and there for other forms of sweetness like an animal. You should be careful. Why? You have no taste for aprakrta-rasa.
At the conclusion of the dialogue between Mahaprabhu and Raya Ramananda Prabhu, the meaning of Radharani’s svarupa, Krsna’s svarupa, prema’s svarupa, and rasa’s svarupa is stated. Mahaprabhu discussed everything. Mahaprabhu then asked Raya Ramananda, “Is Krsna worshipable or is Radharani worshipable? Krsna is scared because He is hiding with Radharani in front of everybody. He fears to give respect to Radharani in front of everybody. After Radharani disappeared, Krsna became hopeless. Then Krsna understood that “I have no power. Everything is useless.” Here, it is shown that Svarupa-sakti—Srimati Radharani is maintaining everything. If God Himself has no relation with Svarupa-sakti, then He is dry, nirakara, nihsakti, nirguna, nirvisesa-brahma. So, if you take shelter of this Svarupa-sakti, then you will understand everything. By having a connection with this power, then it is possible. Why? Srngara-rasa has dasya-rasa, sakhya-rasa, and vatsalya-rasa. Srngara-rasa also has santa, adbhuta, karuna, maitra, vibhatsa, raudra, bhayanaka, and all other forms of rasas. But, if there is no relation with srngara-rasa, then everything is not helpful. They will only give fruits and return; there will no longer be any connection. Therefore, be careful.
The ninth chapter explains Mahaprabhu’s travels to South India.
gauras cakre sa vaisnavan
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.1
[Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu converted the inhabitants of South India. These people were as strong as elephants, but they were in the clutches of the crocodiles of various philosophies, such as the Buddhist, Jain and Mayavada philosophies. With His disc of mercy the Lord delivered them all by converting them into Vaisnavas, devotees of the Lord.]
Mahaprabhu saw that many of the South Indian people were arrested by the Buddhist, Jain, and Mayavada philosophies. These philosophies are like animals. Each philosophy or group is like a tiger, lion, or a crocodile. These philosophies are like groups of animals found in the forest. By staying in groups, animals like tigers, lion, zebras, and buffaloes protect themselves. But, if you belong to any group that is not bona fide, then Mahaprabhu compares this group to an animal group. These groups are only meant to destroy. This is not helpful.
If you think, “I will go near Jains, Hindus, Buddhists, Christians, Muslims, here and there”, then know that this is animal protection. The leaders always try to control one another. Why? They are very cruel. They have no sympathy; they are not humble or helpful. They only say, “You are in my group if you follow what I say.” But these philosophies have no relation with the soul; they only help maintain the body and mind. It is not possible for the body and mind to be happy by following these philosophies. To think otherwise reflects the thinking of an animal. Sastras and Mahaprabhu say, “This thinking is useless.” Money, food, and any object of enjoyment cannot give you any happiness. This is useless. Also, they only destroy. Therefore, you should follow the right path.
So, Mahaprabhu saw that South India is filled with many, many philosophies, groups, leaders, and ideas. The leaders of these groups are ready to only destroy everything. This portion of the Caitanya Caritamrita describes how Mahaprabhu changed the people of South India with His karuna-sakti, with His mercy. Therefore, Mahaprabhu started this program of deliverance and continued for a few years. Mahaprabhu went to each place by foot and He gave all the jivas this instruction and inspiration. He gave them the capacity to follow the soul and Supreme Soul. But, very strong power is necessary for this. Otherwise, the jivas will not accept immediately. For instance, the babies always want chocolates. But if you give a caffeinated chocolate to the babies, then they will not take any other chocolate. They will only desire caffeinated chocolates. If you don’t give, then they will throw away anything else you give them. Why? This caffeine has an intoxicating effect. But, the parents don’t think about this when they give their babies these chocolates. Now, their babies become crazy and they always desire these intoxicating chocolates.
So, by employing tricky means, Mahaprabhu gave the people of South India a taste that is more intoxication than millions of caffeine chocolates or heroin. He gave them a very strong, powerful taste. Drinking this rasa, the people of South India became unaware of its after-affects. But by taking and drinking this rasa, they forgot everything. They forgot family, children, and the group-leaders of these misleading philosophies. They forgot everything. They only chanted Hare Krsna on the streets, and following Mahaprabhu, they went everywhere. When Mahaprabhu left, they only continuously cried. They felt they lost everything but they continued to only chant. The leaders of these groups also became humble and they offered each other pranama. They were no longer sentimental or sensitive.
They no longer thought, “I am great and superior.” They became humble and with a melting heart, they told each other, “You should also chant. You are lucky. Are you also chanting harinama?”
How merciful Mahaprabhu is! In this Kali Yuga, Kali Maharaja offers many things:
dyutam panam striyah suna
—Srimad Bhagavatam 1.17.38
Kali Maharaja offers places where gambling, drinking, prostitution, and animal slaughter can be performed. He is distributing adharma.
Mahaprabhu said, “I am not giving dharma. If I am giving dharma, then I have to fight with adharma. I will give only one thing—this very strong, sweet taste.”
Therefore, Mahaprabhu collected all the power and mercy of Vraja-mandala. And bringing this, Mahaprabhu gave nama-prema to everyone.
nama-prema-mala ganthi’ paraila samsare
—Caitanya Caritamrita Adi 4.40
[He wove a wreath of the holy name and prema, with which He garlanded the entire material world.]
By distributing and showering everyone with just a drop of that prema-bhakti, Mahaprabhu made everyone very happy. Day and night, they only chanted harinama. This is called diksa.
divya jnanam yato dadyat kuryat papasya samksyam
tasmad dikseti sa prokta desike tattva kovidaih
He gave this natural knowledge. Now, material knowledge no longer worked. It was not possible to disturb anybody. Everyone only chanted all the time. They did not leave this tasteful rasa. They only cried and chanted. They didn’t want anything else. They were also divinely crazy. Mahaprabhu gave this very powerful taste of Svarupa-sakti. How did He give this? Mahaprabhu told His karuna-sakti, “I am now coming. You should go fast and help everyone. You should clean everyone’s hearts. I am coming and I will distribute nama-prema.”
The air that touched Mahaprabhu acted as His messenger and went in all directions. It went near everyone. Now everyone only told each other that, “Oh one sannyasi has come. This sannyasi is very powerful and very nice. He has a golden complexion; He has long eyes and hands. He is always chanting, crying, and dancing. He cools everyone by His association. Everyone feels very sweet and well by His association. He is only chanting the Hare Krsna Mahamantra.”
Everyone heard Mahaprabhu chant and they told each other about their supremely good fortune. This is called vartma-pradarsaka guru. They helped each other. People waited for Mahaprabhu to come to their towns and villages. They thought, “How is it possible that this divine figure has come to our state? What is He doing?”
They gave this good announcement to each other. They glorified Mahaprabhu. By this glorification, karuna-sakti cleans everybody. You will be very happy by glorifying Guru and Vaisnavas, especially Mahabhagavat Vaisnavas. You will be very happy immediately because your heart has been cleansed—ceto darpana marjanam. Otherwise, ceto darpana marjanam is not possible. By glorifying Guru and Mahabhagavat Vaisnavas, you will be purified and clean at a time. How? I will tell you.
Like, Rupa Gosvami Prabhu is in Vrndavana. His Samadhi-temple is there. The people of Mahesvari-kunja gave Gurudeva a presentation. Gurudeva refused but they requested him to accept their presentation many times. Gurudeva then agreed and in some time, Gurudeva opened a center there. My Guru Maharaja was also present and he would give advice and many instructions.
He said, “This place will be Rupa-Sanatana’s place.”
But, Rupa-Sanatana already have a place. Sanatana Gosvami’s Samadhi-temple is behind Rupa-Sanatana Gaudiya Math. Rupa Gosvami’s Samadhi-temple is in Radha-Damodara. Why did my Guru Maharaja name the place as Rupa-Sanatana Gaudiya Math? Although Vrndavana is Rupa Gosvami’s and Sanatana Gosavmi’s place, nobody follows or glorifies them. Nobody explains about them. Mostly, everyone only go to Radha-Damodara for requesting mundane fruits. They do parikrama of the Giriraja-Govardhana sila that has Krsna’s footprint only so they can have their material desires fulfilled. Therefore, they go there. But they don’t glorify Rupa Gosvami.
My Guru Maharaja said, “Our center will be Rupa-Sanatana Gosvami’s place. There, we will always glorify Sri Rupa-Sanatana. Then, you will be cleansed and purified at a time.” All centers are for Mahabhagavat Vaisnvas. The centers are not for propagating the name and fame of you or me. Name and fame is only reserved for the Guru-varga, for the Mahabhagavat Vaisnavas. It is their center. Anywhere you go, you will be inspired. On seeing a Mahabhagavat Vaisnava, you will think, “Who is he? He is a Mahabhagavat Vaisnava.” By listening to the glories of Mahabhagavat Vaisnava, you will see that a change is coming soon. As Mahaprabhu walked, His karuna-sakti went ahead of Him and changed everyone body’s heart. People glorified Mahaprabhu to each other.
They said, “I heard that a sannyasi is coming.”
“Where is He coming from?” a person asked.
“He is coming from Jagannatha Puri, Orissa. This sannyasi is very tall and beautiful.”
visvambharau dvija-varau yuga-dharma-palau
vande jagat-priya-karau karunavatarau
—Sri Caitanya Bhagavat Adi-khanda 1.1
[I worship the incarnations of mercy, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and Sri Nityananda Prabhu, whose arms extend to Their knees, whose eyes are large like lotus petals, and whose complexions are enchanting and resplendent with the luster of molten gold, who are the maintainers of the entire universe, who appeared in the families of exalted brahmanas, and inaugurate the sankirtana movement, thus protecting the yuga-dharma and bestowing the highest auspiciousness upon the residents of the material world.]
Mahaprabhu is karuna-avatara. Mahaprabhu didn’t come alone; He came with His karuna-sakti. Therefore, Mahaprabhu’s karuna sakti went everywhere and spread news of His arrival. His karuna-sakti helped everybody. By the mercy of karuna-sakti everybody glorified Mahaprabhu to each other. This glorification cleansed everyone’s hearts and any undesirable mentalities and philosophies were finished. Why? Having a clean heart, they understood and realization came. If anyone has a dirty heart, then despite telling again and again, he will not understand. Therefore, by our good luck and good fortune, we have the chance to glorify Mahabhagavat Vaisnavas on their appearance and disappearance days and on other days. Mahaprabhu’s karuna-sakti is present on those days. If anyone is attracted and attached to Guru-Vaisnavas’ glories and Mahabhagavat’s glories, and God’s glories, then he will do kirtana and engage in sravana, darsana, manana, and anusilana. First, there is sravana—hearing, then darsana—watching, and afterwards, one thinks constantly about the object of his worship. After darsana and manana, anusilana comes. Realization and feelings come, and one tells others that, “Oh this mango is very tasteful. You should also eat it, then you will understand. This is a ripe, juicy, and good smelling mango.”
But if you can’t eat, watch, taste, or hear the mango’s glories, then how can you tell others? Similarly, sastra tells us that, “You should come near Guru, Vaisnavas, Bhaktas, and the Holy Dhama.” By meeting with them, you will be attracted and attached. Thinking about them, they will give you this karuna-sakti and blessings. You will not be able to watch how you are being blessed with this mercy. You think, “If a person slaps or embraces me, then blessings will come.” No, there is no need for this. This is your capacity. If you like, you can accept. Then when you pray, everything will automatically come near you. In South India, even before Mahaprabhu went to any villages, an announcement was made in all the villages about Mahaprabhu’s visit. People told each other, “Oh a sannyasi has come. How wonderful His kirtana is! He cries and rolls on the ground. He is chanting with everybody as He passes from one village to another. Everyone is following Him. He never eats or sleeps; He is only chanting the whole time.”
Thus, everyone glorified Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. The Brahmins, Buddhists, and Jains were very proud. They thought, “Who is He? He is going to everyone.” The Buddhists came with one big golden plate full of meat and they came near Mahaprabhu. They told Mahaprabhu, “This is prasadam.” Mahaprabhu always respects prasadam. Mahaprabhu had a purpose. He wanted to change all the Buddhists; then all would chant and follow Mahaprabhu. The Buddhist guru carried the plate on his head and approached Mahaprabhu. He thought, “If I give this plate, then Mahaprabhu will lose His Vaisnavism. He will lose Bhakti and everything.”
When he approached Mahaprabhu, Garuda came. Why? Anywhere there is God, than His sevakas will surely be with Him for all time. Wherever sadhus are, the Sudarsana cakra is also there, protecting them all the time. Garuda is the first sevaka of Krsna, Rama, Nrsimha, and all incarnations. Therefore, in any temple, there is always a pillar for Garuda where he sits. Wherever there is no Garuda-stambha or pillar, then that place is not God’s center. Therefore, respect is offered to Garuda everywhere. Parama Gurudeva established a Garuda-stambha even in front of the Mathura temple. Garuda is given a place everywhere. There should always be a place for Garudadeva.
Garudadeva came and thought, “This rascal is giving Mahaprabhu meat.”
Garuda took the plate and threw it on the leader’s head. The leader fell unconscious on the ground. All his disciples cried near Mahaprabhu. Mahaprabhu told all of them, “Chant harinama. Give your guru harinama. You give harinama-diksa to your guru. Then your guru’s heart will be clean.”
All the disciples chanted the Hare Krsna Mahamantra inside the guru’s ears. The guru came to his senses and he changed. Mahaprabhu changed them. He even changed the Jains, Mayavadis, and others. They were very strange and strong; but Mahaprabhu made everybody’s heart melt. Even stones and rocks melted. The ocean is always coming with his waves and cutting many hills. He makes sand this way. The ocean is always coming and touching or massaging the hills. But, the ocean is really taking and stealing away their bodies. Sometime after, there are no more hills. All the hills find themselves to have melted. They don’t know when they have melted. Similarly, Mahaprabhu went with His karuna-sakti and Mahamantra everywhere and touched everyone. Thus, meeting everyone, He propagated sankirtana-rasa everywhere. Even stones and rocks melted. This karuna-sakti has so much power. How helpful Mahaprabhu’s journey to South India was for the jivas!
jaya jaya sri-caitanya jaya nityananda
jayadvaita-candra jaya gaura-bhakta-vrnda
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.2
[All glories to Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu! All glories to Lord Nityananda Prabhu! All glories to Sri Advaita Prabhu! And all glories to all the devotees of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu!]
daksina-gamana prabhura ati vilaksana
sahasra sahasra tirtha kaila darasana
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.3
[Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s tour of South India was certainly very extraordinary because He visited many thousands of places of pilgrimage there.]
sei saba tirtha sparsi’ maha-tirtha kaila
sei chale sei desera loka nistarila
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.4
[On the plea of visiting all those holy places, the Lord converted many thousands of residents and thus delivered them. Simply by touching the holy places, He made them into great places of pilgrimage.]
Mahaprabhu visited all South Indian tirthas. There are many tirthas there. Why? Ramacandra stayed there. South India is also called Vaikunthapuram. There are many Visnu and Siva tirthas there like Visnu-kanci and Siva-kanci. Maya-tirtha is also there. Madhurai, Meenaksi, Kanyakumari, and many tirthas are there. Many demigods come and do austerities here. But Kali Maharaja is stealing the power of all the tirthas. Like when a new political leader comes, he takes away the posts of all the previous ministers. He changes, suspends, or transfers them here and there according to his choice. Kali Maharaja came and made all the holy tirthas dirty. And he covered the tirthas with his followers. You will find many followers of Kali Maharaja in Mathura-Vrndavana and Gaya-Kasi. They are all present there; they will abuse, steal, and torture you. They will disturb you so much.
You will then think, “I will never come to the holy dhama. Nonsense people are staying here.”
Why does Kali Maharaja do like this? If he doesn’t act this way, then people will come to the tirthas and get benefit. Then no one will follow Kali Maharaja. Therefore, Kali Maharaja causes this hodge-podge situation. For instance, all power is present in a powerful Guru Maharaja’s center. Bhakti is present. But when Guru disappears or goes at a distance, then Kali Maharaja looks for a hole. Entering that hole, he makes a house or a nest there. And, he shows himself there.
Then a person influenced by Kali Maharaja says, “I am Guru’s follower.”
“But if you are Guru’s follower, then why is there no sravana-kirtana there? Why are there no programs of Bhakti?”
“Oh this is secondary. Firstly, our politics will run. There will be meetings every day.”
“What are these meeting for? For harinama? For hari-katha?”
“Meetings are for maintenance.”
“What maintenance? Why should there be meeting for life-maintenance? Are there any meetings for kirtana and harinama?”
Srila Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja said, “No need for any meetings. Come near me in the morning and chant with me. This is the first meeting. The second meeting is my class. The third meeting is Mahaprasad. The fourth meeting is seva.”
But if others hold meetings the whole day, then what is the conclusion? What advise can nonsense people give you? If you follow them, then you will lose your life. Therefore, Mahaprabhu went to all the holy tirthas. Kali Maharaja and his group have acquired all the tirthas. If you go there, then his followers will steal your purse, bag, and they will torture you. Many gents business and ladies business also takes place there. You will be surprised and you will think, “These bad things happen in these places?” Then you will be very disturbed. Why? Asat-sanga is present there. Kali Yuga covers all the holy tirthas. Therefore, these problems arise. Are Jaghai-Madhai’s anarthas and sins spread all over Navadvipa Dhama? No. Mahamaya-Durga’s rasa takes place. All the goats, pigs, hogs, and dogs are feasted on. This is prasad for them. Thousands go with goats and sheep and slaughter them. This is prasad for them. Then then distribute this. So, Kali Maharaja gives facilities for slaughter, prostitution, gambling, and intoxication. Jiva-himsa is slaughter. Kali Maharaja had acquired all the places.
Caitanya Mahaprabhu purified all the tirthas of South India. Kali Maharaja and his followers then ran away. Only sankirtan-rasa pervaded these places. Therefore, don’t do anything except sankirtanam. Before, during Gurudeva’s time, many Mathajis would go and do kirtana everywhere after hari-katha and prasad. But now, after Gurudeva’s disappearance, where have the mrdangas and karatalas gone? Now everyone has become mahabhagavatis; they have become Durga Devi’s followers. There is no kirtana anymore. But during Gurudeva’s time, even ladies would take mrdangas and karatalas and do kirtana everywhere.
Now, they say, “I am paralyzed. I am in coma. My hands don’t work. My voice doesn’t work. How can I do kirtana?”
They do everything except for kirtana. Kali Maharaja and his followers will give you many gifts. They will tell you, “Don’t do kirtana. Don’t come to class. Don’t follow Bhakti’s rules and regulations. I will give you everything. I will give you respect, house, food, subsidies, and everything else. But I will not give you chances for harinama and hari-kirtana.”
Mahaprabhu said, “No. Hari-kirtana should be done in all the places.”
Everyone started hari-kirtana and all the holy tirthas became purified. Mahaprabhu touched the tirthas and made them into maha-tirthas.
sei saba tirthera krama kahite na pari
daksina-vame tirtha-gamana haya pherapheri
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.5
[I cannot chronologically record all the places of pilgrimage visited by Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. I can only summarize everything by saying that the Lord visited all holy places right and left, coming and going.]
There were tirthas everywhere; Mahaprabhu purified all the tirthas. Why? Saivites and Vaisnavas would fight all the time. Saivites have desires to eat fish, garlic, and onion. They want to smoke intoxicating substances also. But a Vaisnava is disturbed by the smell of these substances. Now, the Vaisnavas are also changing. When I went to South India, I saw that they are using onion and garlic. I asked why.
They said, “This is vegetarian. Otherwise, how can one eat?”
Coconut chutney had onion and garlic. I asked, “Are you offering bhoga with this food made of onion and garlic?”
They said, “No. For bhoga we don’t offer anything that has onion and garlic. Only labors and pujaris take onion and garlic.”
So, Kali Maharaja gives his own gifts anyhow. The tirthas then lose their power. Then all the people of those areas become Kali’s followers. Now, Mahaprabhu checked to see where sankirtana-rasa ran.
ataeva nama-matra kariye ganana
kahite na pari tara yatha anukrama
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.6
Srila Krsnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami said, “I am writing and explaining the names of many important tirthas.”
purvavat pathe yaite ye paya darasana
yei grame yaya, se gramera yata jana
sabei vaisnava haya, kahe ‘krsna’ ‘hari’
anya grama nistaraye sei ‘vaisnava’ kari’
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.7-8
[As previously stated, all the residents of the villages visited by Lord Caitanya became Vaisnavas and began to chant Hari and Krsna. In this way, in all the villages visited by the Lord, everyone became a Vaisnava, a devotee.]
When Mahaprabhu would go to one village, all the villagers would meet him. Those villagers would go to another village and made everyone they met into Vaisnavas. They made everyone into devotees. What did they do? They made Mahaprabhu’s deity immediately. They made the sankirtanam-deity. Like how Svami Prabhupada’s deities are made everywhere. If you go to South India or anywhere, you will see how this preaching is running everywhere. Sankirtana and Ekadasi is running everywhere. Sometime before, I went to Mysore. When I went from Mysore to Ernakulam, I also went to Tiruchinapalli. There, I saw that Svami Prabhupada’s deities are everywhere. Every Sunday, there is a big sankirtana and feast. This is very nice. How wonderful these sankirtana programs are! Mahaprabhu and Nityananda Prabhu are the fathers of this sankirtana movement. The Guru-varga are Nityananda Prabhu’s expansion. Anywhere the Guru-varga are, then sankirtana follows their footsteps.
daksina desera loka aneka prakara
keha jnani, keha karmi, pasandi apara
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.9
[In South India there were many types of people. Some were philosophical speculators, and some were fruitive workers, but in any case there were innumerable nondevotees.]
sei saba loka prabhura darsana-prabhave
nija-nija-mata chadi’ ha-ila vaisnave
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.10
[By the influence of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, all these people abandoned their own opinions and became Vaisnavas, devotees of Krsna.]
vaisnavera madhye rama-upasaka saba
keha ‘tattvavadi’, keha haya ‘sri-vaisnava’
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.11
[At the time, all the South Indian Vaisnavas were worshipers of Lord Ramacandra. Some were Tattvavadis, and some were followers of Ramanujacarya.]
sei saba vaisnava mahaprabhura darsane
krsna-upasaka haila, laya krsna-name
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.12
[After meeting Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, all those different Vaisnavas became devotees of Krsna and began chanting the Hare Krsna maha-mantra.]
In South India, all the people are mostly following some dharma. But some of them were jnanis, karmis, and pasandis. The atheists are completely against. Mostly, most of the people are Christians now. But, Svami Maharaja is changing this Christianity. Now, Jayapataka Maharaja is changing so many. There is also one Maharaja of ISKCON Ujjain who is doing this service. Everyone is doing nama-sankirtanam now and they are carrying their Gurudeva. But now is anyone carrying Srila Gurudeva?
If someone asks, “Whose disciple are you? Do you belong to ISKCON?”
Then the disciple replies, “No. I belong to the Gaudiya Math.”
But they don’t carry Gurudeva in their hearts. If ISKCON asks, “Where are you from?” then the disciple will not say Gurudeva’s name. He is shy and afraid. He thinks, “What will ISKCON say? They may insult.”
But, then you are alone. Who is with you? Then Kali Maharaja’s spies are with you. After attaining Mahaprabhu’s darsana, everyone forgot their philosophy, logic, and everything. All the worshipers of Rama and the Sri-Vaisnavas changed. They became followers of Krsna.
rama! raghava! rama! raghava! rama! raghava! pahi mam
krsna! kesava! krsna! kesava! krsna! kesava! raksa mam
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.13
[“‘O Lord Ramacandra, descendant of Maharaja Raghu, kindly protect me! O Lord Krsna, killer of the Kesi demon, kindly protect me!’”]
ei sloka pathe padi’ karila prayana
gautami-gangaya yai’ kaila ganga-snana
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.14
[While walking on the road, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu used to chant this Rama Raghava mantra. Chanting in this way, He arrived at the banks of the Gautami-ganga and took His bath there.]
mallikarjuna-tirthe yai’ mahesa dekhila
tahan saba loke krsna-nama laoyaila
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.15
[Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu then went to Mallikarjuna-tirtha and saw the deity of Lord Siva there. He also induced all the people to chant the Hare Krsna maha-mantra.]
ramadasa mahadeve karila darasana
ahovala-nrsimhere karila gamana
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.16
[There he saw Lord Mahadeva [Siva], the servant of Lord Rama. He then went to Ahovala-nrsimha.]
Mahaprabhu went to Mangala-giri, Malaya-parvata. Pana-Nrsingha is present there. He only drinks the offerings offered by millions of people every day. Mahaprabhu was there at Mangala-giri and He bathed in the Gautami-Ganga. He saw Mahesh, Siva Thakura at Mallikarjuna-tirtha. He met Rama dasa and He had darsana of Nrsingha. He offered many stava-stutis. On the way, Mahaprabhu sang:
rama! raghava! rama! raghava! rama! raghava! pahi mam
krsna! kesava! krsna! kesava! krsna! kesava! raksa mam
Mahaprabhu sang the Hare Krsna Mahamantra as well. Mahaprabhu chanted Rama’s name. Rama-nama is Taraka-brahma and Krsna-nama is Paraka-brahma. To help the jivas, to purify and change them and to help them follow etiquette, rules and regulations; Mahaprabhu distributed Rama-nama. Rama is Maryada-Purusottama. Did Mahaprabhu distribute Rama-nama because of this? No. This Rama-nama doesn’t refer to Ramacandra. Srila Visvanatha Cakravarthi Thakura explains the meaning of, “Rama-Raghava.” Raghava refers to the bright, effulgent light. When the sun arises, the darkness is dissipated. In the Mahamantra, Hare Krsna is chanted first and then, Hare Rama is chanted. But here, Rama’s name is chanted first. Why? Mahaprabhu chanted Radha-ramana Rama’s names to clean all the jivas’ hearts. He invited Him. He is helping. Then the jivas will understand Krsna. Otherwise, one will be doubtful about Krsna. People are not doubtful about Rama. They doubt Krsna.
They say, “Oh Krsna only likes ladies. He only likes the gopis. But Rama is very strong.”
Everyone came when they heard these names being chanted by Mahaprabhu. Mahaprabhu gave this Rama-nama, but it is different. This Rama-nama refers to Radha-ramana Rama and Gopi-ramana Rama. He is Gopijana-vallabha. He gave this power first and changed everyone. After Nrsinghadeva’s darsana, Mahaprabhu went to Siddhavata.
nrsimha dekhiya tanre kaila nati-stuti
siddhavata gela yahan murti sitapati
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.17
[Upon seeing the Ahovala-nrsimha Deity, Caitanya Mahaprabhu offered many prayers unto the Lord. He then went to Siddhavata, where He saw the Deity of Ramacandra, the Lord of Sitadevi.]
raghunatha dekhi’ kaila pranati stavana
tahan eka vipra prabhura kaila nimantrana
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.18
[Upon seeing the Deity of Lord Ramacandra, the descendant of King Raghu, the Lord offered His prayers and obeisances. Then a brahmana invited the Lord to take lunch.]
sei vipra rama-nama nirantara laya
‘rama’ ‘rama’ vina anya vani na kahaya
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.19
[That brahmana constantly chanted the holy name of Ramacandra. Indeed, but for chanting Lord Ramacandra’s holy name, that brahmana did not speak a word.]
sei dina tanra ghare rahi’ bhiksa kari’
tanre krpa kari’ age calila gaurahari
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.20
[That day, Lord Caitanya remained there and accepted prasadam at his house. After bestowing mercy upon him in this way, the Lord proceeded ahead.]
Mahaprabhu came to Siddhvata. There is a temple of Ramacandra there. There was a devotee there only chanted, “Sita-Rama Sita-Rama,” day and night. He did not say anything else. He invited Mahaprabhu. Mahaprabhu went to take afternoon prasadam at his house. When the devotee saw Mahaprabhu, he forgot everything.
He only chanted, “Hare Krsna Hare Krsna.”
Mahaprabhu asked, “What happened?”
The devotee replied, “When I saw you, I forgot to chant Rama-nama. I try chanting Rama’s names, but I only chant Hare Krsna. What can I do? Did you steal my Rama-nama?”
After prasadam, he offered pranam to Mahaprabhu and washed His feet. He then saw how Mahaprabhu was his selfsame Lord, Sri Ramacandra. He became very happy and said, “Oh Ramacandra has come near me just as He came near Sabari. Rama has come near me!” He became very pleased.
He said, “My life is now successful. Now I am not going to take birth or death anymore. Please take me along with You. I am going with You.”
Mahaprabhu told the devotee, “No. You should serve here and chant Hare Krsna.”
The devotee then always chanted Hare Krsna.
skanda-ksetra-tirthe kaila skanda darasana
trimatha aila, tahan dekhi’ trivikrama
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.21
[At the holy place known as Skanda-ksetra, Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu visited the temple of Skanda. From there He went to Trimatha, where He saw the Visnu Deity Trivikrama.]
punah siddhavata aila sei vipra-ghare
sei vipra krsna-nama laya nirantare
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.22
[After visiting the temple of Trivikrama, the Lord returned to Siddhavata, where He again visited the house of the brahmana, who was now constantly chanting the Hare Krsna maha-mantra.]
Mahaprabhu went to Trimatha, where Vamanadeva is present in His Trivikrama svarupa. Mahaprabhu then went to Skanda-ksetra, where Karttikeyan is present. He is also called Murugan. When I went there, everyone would sing, “Muruga. Muruga.”
I thought, “The South Indians are only chanting, ‘Muruga, Muruga.’”
When I went to the temple, I asked, “Why are you chanting, ‘Murugan, Murugan?’”
There, I saw Karttikeyan. The Telugu people call Karttikeyan, “Murugan.” The temple is situated on top of a big hill. So, Mahaprabhu went to this Skanda-tirtha. Mahaprabhu then went for Trivikrama darsana. After Trivikrama darsana, Mahaprabhu returned to the house of Ramadasa-vipra in Siddhavata. Mahaprabhu saw that the brahmana was advising everyone to chant the Hare Krsna Mahamantra. He was no longer chanting, “Rama Rama.” Mahaprabhu was surprised. Mahaprabhu also did bhiksa there.
bhiksa kari’ mahaprabhu tanre prasna kaila
“kaha vipra, ei tomara kon dasa haila
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.23
[After finishing His lunch there, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu asked the brahmana, “My dear friend, kindly tell Me what your position is now.]
purve tumi nirantara laite rama-nama
ebe kene nirantara lao krsna-nama”
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.24
[“Formerly you were constantly chanting the holy name of Lord Rama. Why are you now constantly chanting the holy name of Krsna?”]
Mahaprabhu asked, “Oh brahmin, what happened? Before you were only chanting Rama’s names, but you are now constantly chanting Krsna’s names.”
vipra bale,—ei tomara darsana-prabhave
toma dekhi’ gela mora ajanma svabhave
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.25
[The brahmana replied, “This is all due to Your influence, Sir. After seeing You, I have lost my lifelong practice.]
The brahmin said, “My life has now changed. I was chanting Rama’s names from my childhood. Now, I have forgotten Rama’s names. Now my nature has changed.”
balyavadhi rama-nama-grahana amara
toma dekhi’ krsna-nama aila eka-bara
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.26
[“From my childhood I have been chanting the holy name of Lord Ramacandra, but upon seeing You I chanted the holy name of Lord Krsna just once.]
The brahmin said, “When I looked at You, I only chanted Krsna’s name once. From then, I have forgotten my Rama-nama. I have forgotten everything.”
sei haite krsna-nama jihvate vasila
krsna-nama sphure, rama-nama dure gela
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.27
[“Since then, the holy name of Krsna has been tightly fixed upon my tongue. Indeed, since I have been chanting the holy name of Krsna, the holy name of Lord Ramacandra has gone far away.]
balya-kala haite mora svabhava eka haya
namera mahima-sastra kariye sancaya
—Sri Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya 9.28
[“From my childhood I have been collecting the glories of the holy name from revealed scriptures.]
The brahmin told Mahaprabhu, “I have been only chanting Rama-nama from my childhood. After seeing You, I have forgotten Rama-nama. Now I only chant Krsna-nama. Since my childhood, it was my nature to collect Rama’s glories from everywhere. I would save these glories and distribute them. But now, I am collecting Krsna’s glories. I have forgotten everything else.”
Thus, Rama-nama and Krsna-nama were glorified and explained by Mahaprabhu.
Now, you should take prasada and the next class will be during the evening.
Gaura Premanande! Hari Haribol!
[CC-by-NDNC Bhakta Bandhav]