From Vrndavana His personal servitor Krsnadasa Vipra induced Him to go back to Prayaga to take bath during the Magha-mela. The Lord acceded to this proposal, and they started for Prayaga. On the way they met with some Pathans, amongst whom there was a learned Moulana. The Lord had some talks with the Moulana and his companions, and the Lord convinced the Moulana that in the Koran also there are descriptions of Bhagavata-dharma and Krsna. All the Pathans were converted to His cult of devotional service.
When He returned to Prayaga, Srila Rupa Gosvami and his youngest brother met Him near Bindu-madhava temple. This time the Lord was welcomed by the people of Prayaga more respectfully. Vallabha Bhatta, who resided on the other bank of Prayaga in the village of Adaila, was to receive Him at his place. but while going there the Lord jumped in the River Yamuna. With great difficulty He was picked up in an unconscious state. Finally He visited the headquarters of Vallabha Bhatta. This Vallabha Bhatta was one of His chief admirers, but later on he inaugurated his own party, the Vallabha-sampradaya.
On the bank of the Dasasvamedha-ghata at Prayaga for ten days continually the Lord instructed Rupa Gosvami in the science of devotional service to the Lord. He taught the Gosvami the divisions of the living creatures in the 8,400,000 species of life. Then He taught him about the human species. Out of them He discussed the followers of the Vedic principles, out of them the fruitive workers, out of them the empiric philosophers, and out of them the liberated souls. He said that there are only a few who are actually pure devotees of Lord Sri Krsna.
Srila Rupa Gosvami was the younger brother of Sanatana Gosvami, and when he retired from service he brought with him two boatfuls of gold coins. This means that he brought with him some hundreds of thousands of rupees accumulated by the labor of his service. And before leaving home for Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu, he divided the wealth as follows: fifty percent for the service of the Lord and His devotees, twenty-five percent for relatives and twenty-five percent for his personal needs in case of emergency. In that way he set an example for all householders.
The Lord taught the Gosvami about devotional service, comparing it to a creeper, and advised him to protect the bhakti creeper most carefully against the mad elephant offense against the pure devotees. In addition, the creeper has to be protected from the desires of sense enjoyment, monistic liberation and perfection of the hatha-yoga system. They are all detrimental on the path of devotional service. Similarly, violence against living beings, and desire for worldly gain, worldly reception and worldly fame are all detrimental to the progress of bhakti, or Bhagavatadharma.
Pure devotional service must be freed from all desires for sense gratification, fruitive aspirations and culture of monistic knowledge.
One must be freed from all kinds of designations, and when one is thus converted to transcendental purity, one can then serve the Lord by purified senses.
As long as there is the desire to enjoy sensually or to become one with the Supreme or to possess the mystic powers, there is no question of attaining the stage of pure devotional service.
Devotional service is conducted under two categories, namely primary practice and spontaneous emotion. When one can rise to the platform of spontaneous emotion, he can make further progress by spiritual attachment, feeling, love, and many higher stages of devotional life for which there are no English words. We have tried to explain the science of devotional service in our book The Nectar of Devotion, based on the authority of Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu by Srila Rupa Gosvami.
Transcendental devotional service has five stages of reciprocation: 1. The self-realization stage just after liberation from material bondage is called the santa, or neutral stage.
2. After that, when there is development of transcendental knowledge of the Lord's internal opulences, the devotee engages himself in the dasya stage.
3. By further development of the dasya stage, a respectful fraternity with the Lord develops, and above that a feeling of friendship on equal terms becomes manifest. Both these stages are called sakhya stage, or devotional service in friendship.
4. Above this is the stage of paternal affection toward the Lord, and this is called the vatsalya stage.
5. And above this is the stage of conjugal love, and this stage is called the highest stage of love of God, although there is no difference in quality in any of the above stages. The last stage of conjugal love of God is called the madhurya stage.
Thus He instructed Rupa Gosvami in devotional science and deputed him to Vrndavana to excavate the lost sites of the transcendental pastimes of the Lord. After this, the Lord returned to Varanasi and delivered the sannyasis and instructed the elder brother of Rupa Gosvami. We have already discussed this. The Lord left only eight slokas of His instructions in writing, and they are known as the Siksastaka. All other literatures of His divine cult were extensively written by the Lord's principal followers, the six Gosvamis of Vrndavana, and their followers. The cult of Caitanya philosophy is richer than any other, and it is admitted to be the living religion of the day with the potency for spreading as visva-dharma, or universal religion. We are glad that the matter has been taken up by some enthusiastic sages like Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Gosvami Maharaja and his disciples. We shall eagerly wait for the happy days of Bhagavatadharma, or prema-dharma, inaugurated by the Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.
The eight slokas completed by the Lord are:
1 Glory to the Sri Krsna sankirtana, which cleanses the heart of all the dust accumulated for years and extinguishes the fire of conditional life, of repeated birth and death. This sankirtana movement is the prime benediction for humanity at large because it spreads the rays of the benediction moon. It is the life of all transcendental knowledge. It increases the ocean of transcendental bliss, and it enables us to fully taste the nectar for which we are always anxious.
2 O my Lord, Your holy name alone can render all benediction to living beings, and thus You have hundreds and millions of names like Krsna and Govinda. In these transcendental names You have invested all Your transcendental energies. There are not even hard and fast rules for chanting these names. O my Lord, out of kindness You enable us to easily approach You by chanting Your holy names, but I am so unfortunate that I have no attraction for them.
3 One should chant the holy name of the Lord in a humble state of mind, thinking oneself lower than the straw in the street; one should be more tolerant than a tree, devoid of all sense of false prestige, and ready to offer all respect to others. In such a state of mind one can chant the holy name of the Lord constantly.
4 O almighty Lord, I have no desire to accumulate wealth, nor do I desire beautiful women, nor do I want any number of followers. I only want Your causeless devotional service birth after birth.
5 O son of Maharaja Nanda [Krsna], I am Your eternal servitor, yet somehow or other I have fallen into the ocean of birth and death. please pick me up from this ocean of death and place me as one of the atoms of Your lotus feet.
6 O my Lord, when will my eyes be decorated with tears of love flowing constantly when I chant Your holy name? When will my voice choke up, and when will the hairs of my body stand on end at the recitation of Your name? 7 O Govinda! Feeling Your separation, I am considering a moment to be like twelve years or more. Tears are flowing from my eyes like torrents of rain, and I am feeling all vacant in the world in Your absence.
8 I know no one but Krsna as my Lord, and He shall remain so even if He handles me roughly in His embrace or makes me brokenhearted by not being present before me. He is completely free to do anything and everything, for He is always my worshipful Lord unconditionally.
Questions by the Sages ASA Chapter Notes:
Verses 1-3, are Prelude to SB then at Naimisaranya the Sages ask Suta Goswami six questions (4-22).
1) Ch-1 is 42 pages with 22 verses (1.9 pages/verse).
2) And, most of those pages are in the first three verses.
Take them slowly, 1/2 of your reading is in the first three verses.
3) Second half is Questions by the Sages. What are the six questions?
Why do they ask these of Suta Goswami?
Are the four regulative principles introduced?
What right do they have to ask these questions?
Where are they? Kuruksetra?
What qualifications do we have or lack to hear Srimad Bhagavatam (Text 21 Purport).
4), 4), 4) But what is Srimad Bhagavatam? Is that the content of Texts 2 & 3?
5) Text One is 9-pages! I count maybe 11-qualities of Krsna, Vasudeva, mentioned in the sloka. Is that a correct count? Does Prabhupada discuss them all in the Purport? Why should we meditate on Vasudeva, not economic development?
What does susrusu mean (Compare Nectar of Instruction Text 5).
What's a "Prelude"? (Dictionary?)
6) Text One describes Krsna. Text Two Describes ______(?)
7) Is the following true of Text Two? Please complete:
Materialistic Religion < << Srimad Bhagavatam >> > Highest Truth >>-> Reality x Illusion (for) Welfare of ALL>> > Destroys ____(?) & >> > Sufficient for ______(?)
Who compiled it?
Who can understand it? (Graph it!)
8) Is Text Three more of Text Two? How? Two ways?
Finis -- Are the Six Questions in front of you?
Do you have any other questions? If these six are answered will it be enough for you?
* * *
No Key Verses in this chapter for memorization, but 2nd pada of Text 10 is famous.
Are you "mandah? sumanda-matayo? manda-bhagya? upadrutah?"
There is at least one Text more that I remember is really nice.
9) What does Text Three say about relishing SB?
om namo bhagavate vasudevaya
janmady asya yato 'nvayad itaratas carthesv abhijnah svarat
tene brahma hrda ya adi-kavaye muhyanti yat surayah
dhamna svena sada nirasta-kuhakam satyam param dhimahi
SYNONYMS om--O my Lord; namah--offering my obeisances; bhagavate--unto the Personality of Godhead; vasudevaya--unto Vasudeva (the son of Vasudeva), or Lord Sri Krsna, the primeval Lord; janma-adi--creation, sustenance and destruction; asya--of the manifested universes; yatah--from whom; anvayat--directly; itaratah--indirectly; ca--and; arthesu--purposes; abhijnah--fully cognizant; sva-rat--fully independent; tene--imparted; brahma--the Vedic knowledge; hrda--consciousness of the heart; yah--one who; adi-kavaye--unto the original created being; muhyanti--are illusioned; yat--about whom; surayah--great sages and demigods; tejah-- fire; vari--water; mrdam--earth; yatha--as much as; vinimayah--action and reaction; yatra--whereupon; tri-sargah--three modes of creation, creative faculties; amrsa--almost factual; dhamna--along with all transcendental paraphernalia; svena--self-sufficiently; sada--always; nirasta--negation by absence; kuhakam--illusion; satyam--truth; param--absolute; dhimahi--I do meditate upon.
TRANSLATION O my Lord, Sri Krsna, son of Vasudeva, O all-pervading Personality of Godhead, I offer my respectful obeisances unto You. I meditate upon Lord Sri Krsna because He is the Absolute Truth and the primeval cause of all causes of the creation, sustenance and destruction of the manifested universes. He is directly and indirectly conscious of all manifestations, and He is independent because there is no other cause beyond Him. It is He only who first imparted the Vedic knowledge unto the heart of Brahmaji, the original living being. By Him even the great sages and demigods are placed into illusion, as one is bewildered by the illusory representations of water seen in fire, or land seen on water. Only because of Him do the material universes, temporarily manifested by the reactions of the three modes of nature, appear factual, although they are unreal. I therefore meditate upon Him, Lord Sri Krsna, who is eternally existent in the transcendental abode, which is forever free from the illusory representations of the material world. I meditate upon Him, for He is the Absolute Truth.
PURPORT Obeisances unto the Personality of Godhead, Vasudeva, directly indicate Lord Sri Krsna, who is the divine son of Vasudeva and Devaki.
This fact will be more explicitly explained in the text of this work.
Sri Vyasadeva asserts herein that Sri Krsna is the original Personality of Godhead, and all others are His direct or indirect plenary portions or portions of the portion. Srila Jiva Gosvami has even more explicitly explained the subject matter in his Krsna-sandarbha. And Brahma, the original living being, has explained the subject of Sri Krsna substantially in his treatise named Brahma-samhita. In the Sama-veda Upanisad, it is also stated that Lord Sri Krsna is the divine son of Devaki. Therefore, in this prayer, the first proposition holds that Lord Sri Krsna is the primeval Lord, and if any transcendental nomenclature is to be understood as belonging to the Absolute Personality of Godhead, it must be the name indicated by the word Krsna, which means the all attractive.
In Bhagavad-gita, in many places, the Lord asserts Himself to be the original Personality of Godhead, and this is confirmed by Arjuna, and also by great sages like Narada, Vyasa, and many others. In the Padma Purana, it is also stated that out of the innumerable names of the Lord, the name of Krsna is the principal one.
Vasudeva indicates the plenary portion of the Personality of Godhead, and all the different forms of the Lord, being identical with Vasudeva, are indicated in this text. The name Vasudeva particularly indicates the divine son of Vasudeva and Devaki. Sri Krsna is always meditated upon by the paramahamsas, who are the perfected ones among those in the renounced order of life. Vasudeva, or Lord Sri Krsna, is the cause of all causes. Everything that exists emanates from the Lord. How this is so is explained in later chapters of this work.
This work is described by Mahaprabhu Sri Caitanya as the spotless Purana because it contains the transcendental narration of the Personality of Godhead Sri Krsna. The history of the Srimad- Bhagavatam is also very glorious. It was compiled by Sri Vyasadeva after he had attained maturity in transcendental knowledge. He wrote this under the instructions of Sri Naradaji, his spiritual master. Vyasadeva compiled all Vedic literatures, containing the four divisions of the Vedas, the Vedanta-sutras (or the Brahma-sutras), the Puranas, the Mahabharata, and so on. But nevertheless he was not satisfied. His dissatisfaction was observed by his spiritual master, and thus Narada advised him to write on the transcendental activities of Lord Sri Krsna.
These transcendental activities are described specifically in the Tenth Canto of this work. But, in order to reach to the very substance, one must proceed gradually by developing knowledge of the categories.
It is natural that a philosophical mind wants to know about the origin of the creation. At night he sees the stars in the sky, and he naturally speculates about their inhabitants. Such inquiries are natural for man because man has a developed consciousness which is higher than that of the animals. The author of Srimad-Bhagavatam gives a direct answer to such inquiries. He says that the Lord Sri Krsna is the origin of all creations. He is not only the creator of the universe, but the destroyer as well. The manifested cosmic nature is created at a certain period by the will of the Lord. It is maintained for some time, and then it is annihilated by His will. Therefore, the supreme will is behind all cosmic activities. Of course, there are atheists of various categories who do not believe in a creator, but that is due to a poor fund of knowledge.
The modern scientist, for example, has created space satellites,
and by some arrangement or other, these satellites are thrown into outer space to fly for some time at the control of the scientist who is far away. Similarly, all the universes with innumerable stars and planets are controlled by the intelligence of the Personality of Godhead.
In Vedic literatures, it is said that the Absolute Truth, Personality of Godhead, is the chief amongst all living personalities. All living beings, beginning from the first created being, Brahma, down to the smallest ant, are individual living beings. And above Brahma, there are even other living beings with individual capacities, and the Personality of Godhead is also a similar living being. And He is an individual as are the other living beings. But the Supreme Lord, or the supreme living being, has the greatest intelligence, and He possesses super-most inconceivable energies of all different varieties. If a man's brain can produce a space satellite, one can very easily imagine how brains higher than man can produce similarly wonderful things which are far superior.
The reasonable person will easily accept this argument, but there are stubborn atheists who would never agree.
Srila Vyasadeva, however, at once accepts the supreme intelligence as the paramesvara. He offers his respectful obeisances unto the supreme intelligence addressed as the para or the paramesvara or the Supreme Personality of Godhead. And that paramesvara is Sri Krsna, as admitted in Bhagavad-gita and other scriptures delivered by Sri Vyasadeva and specifically in this Srimad- Bhagavatam. In Bhagavad-gita, the Lord says that there is no other paratattva (summum bonum) than Himself. Therefore, Sri Vyasadeva at once worships the para-tattva, Sri Krsna, whose transcendental activities are described in the Tenth Canto.
Unscrupulous persons go immediately to the Tenth Canto and especially to the five chapters which describe the Lord's rasa dance. This portion of the Srimad-Bhagavatam is the most confidential part of this great literature. Unless one is thoroughly accomplished in the transcendental knowledge of the Lord, one is sure to misunderstand the Lord's worshipable transcendental pastimes called rasa dance and His love affairs with the gopis. This subject matter is highly spiritual, and only the liberated persons who have gradually attained to the stage of paramahamsa can transcendentally relish this rasa dance. Srila Vyasadeva therefore gives the reader the chance to gradually develop spiritual realization before actually relishing the essence of the pastimes of the Lord. Therefore, he purposely invokes a Gayatri mantra, dhimahi. This Gayatri mantra is meant for spiritually advanced people. When one is successful in chanting the Gayatri mantra, he can enter into the transcendental position of the Lord. One must therefore acquire brahminical qualities or be perfectly situated in the quality of goodness in order to chant the Gayatri mantra successfully and then attain to the stage of transcendentally realizing the Lord, His name, His fame, His qualities and so on.
Srimad-Bhagavatam is the narration of the svarupa of the Lord manifested by His internal potency, and this potency is distinguished from the external potency which has manifested the cosmic world, which is within our experience. Srila Vyasadeva makes a clear distinction between the two in this sloka. Sri Vyasadeva says herein that the manifested internal potency is real, whereas the external manifested energy in the form of material existence is only temporary and illusory like the mirage in the desert. In the desert mirage there is no actual water. There is only the appearance of water. Real water is somewhere else. The manifested cosmic creation appears as reality. But reality, of which this is but a shadow, is in the spiritual world. Absolute Truth is in the spiritual sky, not the material sky. In the material sky everything is relative truth. That is to say, one truth depends on something else. This cosmic creation results from interaction of the three modes of nature, and the temporary manifestations are so created as to present an illusion of reality to the bewildered mind of the conditioned soul, who appears in so many species of life, including the higher demigods, like Brahma, Indra, Candra, and so on. In actuality, there is no reality in the manifested world. There appears to be reality, however, because of the true reality which exists in the spiritual world, where the Personality of Godhead eternally exists with His transcendental paraphernalia.
The chief engineer of a complicated construction does not personally take part in the construction, but he knows every nook and corner because everything is done under his direction. He knows everything about the construction, both directly and indirectly. Similarly, the Personality of Godhead, who is the supreme engineer of this cosmic creation, knows every nook and corner, although affairs are being carried out by demigods.
Beginning from Brahma down to the insignificant ant, no one is independent in the material creation. The hand of the Lord is seen everywhere. All material elements as well as all spiritual sparks emanate from Him only. And whatever is created in this material world is but the interaction of two energies, the material and the spiritual, which emanate from the Absolute Truth, the Personality of Godhead, Sri Krsna. A chemist can manufacture water in the chemical laboratory by mixing hydrogen and oxygen. But, in reality, the living entity works in the laboratory under the direction of the Supreme Lord. And the materials with which he works are also supplied by the Lord. The Lord knows everything directly and indirectly, and He is cognizant of all minute details, and He is fully independent. He is compared to a mine of gold, and the cosmic creations in so many different forms are compared to objects made from the gold, such as gold rings, necklaces and so on. The gold ring and the gold necklace are qualitatively one with the gold in the mine, but quantitatively the gold in the mine is different.
Therefore, the Absolute Truth is simultaneously one and different.
Nothing is absolutely equal with the Absolute Truth, but at the same time, nothing is independent of the Absolute Truth.
Conditioned souls, beginning from Brahma, who engineers the entire universe, down to the insignificant ant, are all creating, but none of them are independent of the Supreme Lord. The materialist wrongly thinks that there is no creator other than his own self. This is called maya, or illusion. Because of his poor fund of knowledge, the materialist cannot see beyond the purview of his imperfect senses, and thus he thinks that matter automatically takes its own shape without the aid of a superior intelligence. This is refuted in this sloka by Srila Vyasadeva: "Since the complete whole or the Absolute Truth is the source of everything, nothing can be independent of the body of the Absolute Truth." Whatever happens to the body quickly becomes known to the embodied. Similarly, the creation is the body of the absolute whole. Therefore, the Absolute knows everything directly and indirectly that happens in the creation.
In the sruti-mantra, it is also stated that the absolute whole or Brahman is the ultimate source of everything. Everything emanates from Him, and everything is maintained by Him. And at the end, everything enters into Him. That is the law of nature. In the smrti-mantra, the same is confirmed. It is said that the source from which everything emanates at the beginning of Brahma's millennium and the reservoir to which everything ultimately enters, is the Absolute Truth or Brahman. Material scientists take it for granted that the ultimate source of the planetary system is the sun, but they are unable to explain the source of the sun.