domingo, 12 de junio de 2011

Śrī Caitanya-bhāgavata - Śrīla Vṛndāvana dāsa Ṭhākura - Ādi-khaṇḍa 11.1-11.8

Śrī Caitanya-bhāgavata - Śrīla Vṛndāvana dāsa Ṭhākura

Chapter Eleven: Meeting with Śrī Īśvara Purī

Commentary by Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura

This chapter describes various subjects like the scholastic pastimes of Nimāi Paṇḍita, Mukunda’s chanting the names of Kṛṣṇa in Advaita’s assembly, Nimāi’s sporting pastimes with Mukunda, the godlessness of Nadia, the arrival of Īśvara Purī in Navadvīpa, his meeting with Advaita Prabhu, his accepting lunch and discussing topics of Kṛṣṇa at Gaura’s house, he teaches his own book, Śrī Kṛṣṇa-līlāmṛta, to Śrī Gadādhara Paṇḍita, Nimāi’s comments on that book, and enjoying topics of Kṛṣṇa with Śrī Purīpāda.

Śrī Gauracandra, the husband of Sarasvatī, wandered throughout Navadvīpa with thousands of students while remaining intoxicated from scholastic mellows. Throughout Navadvīpa, no one other than Gaṅgādāsa Paṇḍita could properly understand Nimāi Paṇḍita’s explanations. According to their mundane mentality, the materialists saw Nimāi Paṇḍita in various ways. The atheists saw Him as Yamarāja personified, the materialists saw Him as Cupid personified, and the learned scholars saw Him as Bṛhaspati personified. Meanwhile, the Vaiṣṇavas eagerly waited with the following hope:

“When will the Lord manifest devotional service to Viṣṇu within this world, which is devoid of devotion to Viṣṇu?”

Many people came to study in Navadvīpa, which was the main educational center. Many Vaiṣṇava residents of Caṭṭagrāma came and lived in Navadvīpa in order to study and reside on the bank of the Ganges. In the afternoon, all the pure devotees would gather at the assembly of Śrī Advaita. All the Vaiṣṇavas in the assembly of Advaita felt great happiness in their hearts on hearing the glories of Lord Hari chanted by Mukunda, who was dear to all the Vaiṣṇavas. For this reason the Lord was also very pleased at heart with Mukunda. As soon as Nimāi saw Mukunda, He would challenge him with questions in logic, and both would then engage in loving debate. Nimāi would also challenge other devotees headed by Śrīvāsa. Fearing that Nimāi would challenge them, they would all run away from Him. Having renounced topics not related to Kṛṣṇa, the devotees did not love to hear anything except kṛṣṇa-kathā, and Nimāi did not ask them anything other than questions on logic.

One day Nimāi Paṇḍita was coming on the main road with some students. At that time Mukunda saw Nimāi from a distance and immediately tried to escape from His vision. On the pretext of describing the reason for Mukunda’s behaviour, Nimāi narrated His and His devotees’ glories to Govinda, who was His servant and doorkeeper, saying:

“I have not yet revealed the topics of devotional service to Kṛṣṇa. That is why Mukunda ran away from Me. But he will not do this for long, because I will manifest such pure devotional service and Vaiṣṇava characteristics that even Lord Brahmā and Lord Śiva will come to My doorstep and roll on the ground.”

Thereafter the author describes the godless atmosphere of Navadvīpa at that time. Although the devotees were always engaged in chanting the names of Kṛṣṇa, the people of Nadia were so averse to Kṛṣṇa and maddened by enjoyable objects like wealth and children that as soon as they heard the chanting of Kṛṣṇa’s names by devotees, particularly the four brothers headed by Śrīvāsa, they ridiculed and teased them. Hearing the blasphemous words from the sinful atheists, the Vaiṣṇavas felt great distress within their hearts and always thought:

“When will Śrī Kṛṣṇacandra appear within this world and eradicate the dearth of kīrtana?”

When the Vaiṣṇavas informed Śrī Advaita about the criticism and blasphemous words of the atheists, Ācārya Prabhu vowed:

“I will soon induce Kṛṣṇa, who gives pleasure to the hearts of the devotees, to manifest here in Navadvīpa.”

By the words of Śrī Advaita, the distress of the Vaiṣṇavas was mitigated.

Meanwhile, as Nimāi increased Śacī’s joy by remaining absorbed in the pleasure of study, Śrī Īśvara Purī one day arrived incognito at Śrī Advaita’s house in Navadvīpa. By seeing his wonderful effulgence, Advaita Ācārya understood that Īśvara Purī was a Vaiṣṇava sannyāsī. When Mukunda sang a song about Kṛṣṇa in Advaita’s assembly, the naturally deep ocean of love for Kṛṣṇa in the pure heart of Īśvara Purī overflowed. Thereupon everyone came to know that this devoted sannyāsī was Īśvara Purī.

One day as Śrī Gaurasundara was returning home from teaching, by providence He met Īśvara Purī on the way. The Lord, who is jagad-guru, displayed honour to His devotees by immediately offering obeisances to His servant. Seeing Nimāi’s wonderful effulgence, Īśvara Purī inquired about His identity and the subject of His studies. Nimāi answered all of Īśvara Purī’s inquiries and then respectfully brought him home for lunch. After Śacīdevī cooked and offered foodstuffs to Kṛṣṇa and fed Īśvara Purī, Īśvara Purī began to discuss topics of Kṛṣṇa with Nimāi. While discussing kṛṣṇa-kathā, Īśvara Purī became overwhelmed with love of God. Īśvara Purī stayed in Navadvīpa at the house of Śrī Gopīnātha Ācārya for a few months, and Nimāi regularly went to see him. Seeing the devotion of Gadādhara Paṇḍita, who was renounced from his childhood, Īśvara Purī began to affectionately teach him his book, Śrī Kṛṣṇa-līlāmṛta. Every evening, after studying and teaching, Nimāi went to offer obeisances to Īśvara Purī. One day Īśvara Purī requested Nimāi Paṇḍita to point out the mistakes in his Śrī Kṛṣṇa-līlāmṛta and indicated his desire to correct the mistakes under Nimāi’s guidance. Hearing his words, the Lord condemned mundane scholarship and spoke the following invaluable nectarean words:

“First of all, this book is composed by such a pure devotee as Purīpāda, and, moreover, it is full of topics about Kṛṣṇa. Therefore whoever finds faults in this book is certainly an offender. The poetry of a pure devotee, in whatever form it may be, is always pleasing to Kṛṣṇa. There is no doubt about it. The Supreme Lord never sees any grammatical faults in the statements of His devotees, for He is controlled by devotion and He accepts the sentiments of His devotees. A person who finds faults in the statements of a devotee is himself full of faults. No one is so audacious as to find faults in the descriptions of the Supreme Lord by a pure devotee like Purīpāda.”

But Īśvara Purī repeatedly requested Nimāi to point out the faults in his book. In this way Īśvara Purī regularly spent an hour or two with Nimāi discussing various subjects. After hearing a verse from Īśvara Purī’s book one day, Nimāi Paṇḍita sportingly said:

“The verb in this verse should be parasmaipadī instead of ātmanepadī.”
Another day, when Nimāi came back, Īśvara Purī said:

“The verb that You have not accepted as ātmanepadī, I have accepted as ātmanepadī.”

In order to increase the glories and display the victory of His servant, the Lord did not point out any further faults. In this way, after spending some time enjoying educational pastimes with Nimāi, Īśvara Purī left Navadvīpa to continue sanctifying the holy places of India.

CB Ādi-khaṇḍa 11.1

jaya jaya mahā-maheśvara gauracandra
bālya-līlāya śrī-vidyā-vilāsera kendra


All glories to Śrī Gauracandra, the Lord of lords. In His childhood He was the reservoir of scholastic pastimes.


The phrase vidyā-vilāsera kendra is explained as follows:

The lack of proper philosophy or knowledge is called avidyā. Although some people claim that to achieve knowledge of an incomplete object is vidyā, real knowledge is found only in knowledge of the Supreme Lord, who is complete. Although knowledge of Brahman and Paramātmā aspects of the Absolute Truth is part of spiritual knowledge, in a comparative study of spiritual knowledge they are both limited and incomplete. The age for primary education of an ordinary human being is known as bālya, or childhood. The enactment of educational pastimes that we find in the pastimes of Gaurasundara at that age are like the childhood activities of the spiritual world. The arrangement for learning and teaching children’s literatures like grammar, the principle subject of language books, is simply based on giving and taking mundane knowledge. With the help of these children’s literatures one can enter into and realize knowledge regarding transcendental sound. Although different languages born from the research of mankind are meant for bringing one to knowledge of the Supreme, they are not actually directing one to knowledge of the Supreme. Ordinary people could not observe even a tinge of spiritual education in the educational pursuits of Śrī Gaurasundara in His childhood pastimes. Since Gaurasundara concealed Himself at that time, many people had no opportunity to see Him as the central figure of all spiritual knowledge. Although the objects of the external world, which act as servants of sensual knowledge, did not benefit the living entities through Śrī Gaurasundara’s studying grammar or teaching language, from the intellectual point of view He was nevertheless certainly present in each word as the Supersoul.

CB Ādi-khaṇḍa 11.2

ei-mate gupta-bhāve āche dvija-rāja
adhyayana vinā āra nāhi kona kāja

In this way, as Gaura, the best of the brāhmaṇas, confidentially lived in Navadvīpa, He had no engagement other than studying.

CB Ādi-khaṇḍa 11.3-4

jiniyā kandarpa-koṭi rūpa manohara
prati-aṅge nirupama lāvaṇya sundara
ājānu-lambita-bhuja, kamala-nayana
adhare tāmbula, divya-vāsa-paridhāna


His form was as enchanting as millions of Cupids. Each of His limbs was incomparably charming. His arms extended to His knees, and His eyes were like the petals of a lotus. He chewed betel nut and dressed divinely.


The words adhare tāmbula, “chewed betel nut,” are explained as follows:

On seeing Śrī Gaurasundara’s wonderfully sweet beauty, which defeats that of millions of Cupids, His matchless effulgence emanating from His bodily limbs, His long arms that stretch to His knees, His lotus eyes, His fine dress, and betel nuts between His lips, the conditioned souls, who have been awarded ugly material bodies, short arms, and harsh eyes and who desire sense gratification, consider Śrī Gaurasundara as attached to material enjoyment and intoxication and possessing a material body like themselves. But if they understand the extraordinary glories of Śrī Gaurasundara, it will help the envious living entities realize that their material bodies, which are fit to be eaten by dogs and jackals, and their minds, which are attached to misconceptions, are abominable. Although Śrī Gaurasundara accepted innumerable items of enjoyment such as betel nuts, He instructed everyone for their eternal benefit to engage each and every item in the service of Śrī Kṛṣṇa, who is the only object of all enjoyment. In other words, He taught that if living entities eligible for being controlled by māyā enjoy insignificant material sense objects, their inauspiciousness is guaranteed, for these items are eternally prescribed as ingredients for the service of the Supreme Lord. Although the display of such pastimes by Śrī Gaurasundara is meant to be seen and analysed by self-controlled sādhakas, the eternally envious ignorant observers are simply bewildered as a reward for their foolishness. Since Śrī Gaurasundara is situated on the highest platform of the Absolute Truth, His exhibition of renunciation pastimes was not intended to protect Himself from the mundane difficulties imposed by non-devotional endeavours like those of conditioned souls who desire self-control and liberation and who display an indifferent lifestyle in order to remain detached or separate from material objects; rather, He empowered the most fortunate persons to understand the important truth that in the characteristics and personality of the Supreme Lord the performance of such pastimes is not at all abominable or faulty.

CB Ādi-khaṇḍa 11.5

sarvadāya parihāsa-mūrti vidyā-bale
sahasra paḍuyā-saṅge, yabe prabhu cale


As the Lord walked with thousands of students, by the strength of His knowledge He entertained everyone with His sharp wit.

CB Ādi-khaṇḍa 11.6

sarva-navadvīpe bhrame’ tribhuvana-pati
pustakera rūpe kare priyā sarasvatī


Viśvambhara, the Lord of the three worlds, travelled all over Navadvīpa holding in His hand His beloved Sarasvatī, in the form of a book.


In the form of books, Mahā-Lakṣmī Nārāyaṇī, the goddess of speech, always remained in the lotus hands of her Lord, Gaura-Nārāyaṇa, and thus fulfilled the meaning of the Lord’s name, Vācaspati, “the husband of the goddess of speech.”

CB Ādi-khaṇḍa 11.7

navadvīpe hena nāhi paṇḍitera nāma
ye āsiyā bujhibeka prabhura vyākhyāna


There was no scholar throughout Navadvīpa who could understand Nimāi’s explanations.

CB Ādi-khaṇḍa 11.8

sabe eka gaṅgādāsa mahā-bhāgyavān
yā’ra ṭhāñi prabhu kare’ vidyāra ādāna


The Lord discussed His explanations only with the most fortunate Gaṅgādāsa Paṇḍita.

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