The following is a presentation by His Holiness Jayapataka Swami on March 27th, 1983, in Sri Navadvipa Dhama, West Bengal, India. This presentation was given in Sri Navadvipa Dhama Mandala Parikrama in Rudradvipa.
Jayapataka Swami: Today, in this sacred land of Rudradvipa, in Navadvipa Dham, you should know that all of the four Vaishnava-acaryas have all worshipped Sri Krishna Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, otherwise how they can be Vaisnava at all? We agree with the statement made this morning and according to Bhaktivinoda Thakura, all the four Vaisnava Acaryas have all worshipped Sri Krishna Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Ramanujacarya came to Navadvipa during his lifetime. He kind of snuck here. When he went up to Jagannath Puri and he was thrown out by Jagannath, before he went back to Kumarstan he came here to Navadvipa, and he started doing tapasya.
Jayapataka Swami: That’s another story. (Everyone laughs) That’s for the Puri-yatra. So, I... You cannot know the mind of the book, but He came here, He performed his tapasya in Rudradvipa, and here Lord Siva appeared to him, because this is the island where Lord Siva and the 12... rather, dvadasa-rudra? Or eleven, ekadasa-rudra... anyway. 11 Rudras (inaudible) they performed their tapasya here waiting for Lord Caitanya and had darshan of Lord Caitanya, so when Ramanuja came here, Lord Siva being satisfied with his tapasya appeared to him and blessed him that “I am very pleased with your worship. You should know, that this place, is the place of Sri Krishna Caitanya Mahaprabhu, the mercy incarnation of Krishna Himself, coming and giving pure Krishna-bhakti.” and he revealed... he gave spiritual vision that he could see the ever existent sankirtan party of Caitanya Mahaprabhu here in Rudradvipa. Then He revealed that that sankirtana party chanting
Hare Krishna Hare Krishna
Krishna Krishna Hare Hare/
Hare Rama Hare Rama
Rama Rama Hare Hare
was non-different in mood from the mood of the gopis in the rasa-lila, that the mood of separation and pure appreciation for the qualities, form, characteristics of the Lord Sri Krishna were non-different and Ramanujacarya could see that the sankirtana party of Lord Caitanya turned into Radha-Krishna rasa-lila with the gopis. And here in Rudradvipa the rasa-lila is ever existent, that the mood of Lord Caitanya is exactly following in the mood of Radha and Krishna, following in the pure Vrindavan mood, but actually in Kali-yuga we are not qualified to go directly to Vrindavan because we are aparadhis, we are offenders, but Lord Caitanya is so kind that, by His mercy we are able to also enter into those confidential pastimes. We are able to enter into those nectarine pastimes and be forgiven for all our offenses, and then by His mercy we can actually understand, what is the real meaning of Radha-Krishna pastimes, of Vrindavan pastimes.
To get that mercy of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu, as has been revealed in the past few days in the classes, it’s specially by giving out that mercy to the conditioned souls, so that they can take up also this sublime process of Krishna consciousness, pure devotional service. I’d like to request His Divine Grace Srila Visnupada Harikesa Swami to illuminate us on how we can understand the non-difference of Lord Caitanya’s pastimes from the pastimes in Vrindavana, and how we can enter into the sublime activities even in our present state.
Devotee: Jaya! (applause)
Harikesa Swami: Acaryapada is expert in making introductions (Laughter) I hate to be the one who doesn’t speak on what he wanted me speak on. As we were walking here, we all noticed that it was very hot, and as we are sitting here, we are noticing that we are all very tired, and it is still very hot So, this of course, it is the contact of the material body. When a spirit soul accepts the material body it begins to feel the pains and pleasures of this material body.
puruṣaḥ prakṛti-stho hi
bhuṅkte prakṛti-jān guṇān
kāraṇaṁ guṇa-saṅgo 'sya
That we are wondering through so many different species of life, and because we are considering our self the enjoyer or purusa, we are forced to meet good and bad, under the influence of the modes of material nature. But when we are walking on these parikramas, we are not wandering through the different species, we are not wandering through the different, various material sense gratification. We are simply wondering around the place of pastimes of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Nityananda Prabhu, Advaita Prabhu, Gadadhara Prabhu, Srivasacarya. So, it is a completely different kind of wandering and even though it is very hot and even though some have uh, begun to feel great discomfort but if the mind is at all attracted to loving devotion, the mind is wandering off to take shelter of the lotus feet of the Lord, whereas the body is wanting to merge into the earth but that bodily platform is a temporary thing and of that which is temporary, there is no eternal existence.
Now, it is very hot, and if we go to Vrindavan we will find it is quite cooler during the night during the night, and if we go back to our respective places we will find may be it is really cold, some places still have snow, but the pastime of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu do not relate to our material body. Therefore, we can actually enjoy them. Anything that relates to the material body you cannot enjoy. Even one takes the most wonderful thing of this material world, after a while it will not be very nice. Nice food, nice association with the members of the opposite sex, nice fame, nice money, all this things ultimately bring about the opposite result.
Ultimately they bring about opposite results than that which we are looking for. We are all looking for enjoyment, we are looking for pleasure, but the material energy is so arranged that it will not be available, just like now we are uh, actually in the most ecstatic place in the whole universe, but because of conditioning, one is thinking it is very hot. Bodies are thinking it is hot, but if the mind is trained up, if the internal consciousness has gotten some awareness due to performance of devotional service, chanting of Hare Krishna mantra uh, preaching, the inward consciousness of loving devotion of the Lord brings the mind, when there is difficulty, to the lotus feet of the Lord. When there is difficulty the devotee has the opportunity to remember the Lord more, just like on these parikramas they are very special. Why are they special? That is not because we have gotten and on and gone on a hike somewhere. Hiking you can do anywhere. If all of us got up and went on a hike, in the Amazon rain forest, it would not be at all very blissful or even purifying, but because we are walking through the dhama, walking through the place of pastimes of the Supreme Lord, mysteriously and miraculously when we return, everybody is very blissful.
Just like when go on the Parikrama, the devotees would stay back, the more cynical ones, we need not make any further comments, they always ask the returning devotees, they say, “How was it?” (Laughter) and returning devotees somehow are very blissful, even though what did we do? Well, we got up and we walked to this place and paid our obeisances and sat down and heard some class, then we got up and walked to this other place and sat down and heard some class, we could’ve simply, just walked around the garden and sat down and heard the class, it would have been the same activity, but it’s not, and everybody knows it. Therefore there is a transcendental nature to parikrama.
There is an activity established by the Supreme Lord Himself, established by Caitanya Mahaprabhu and Nityananda Prabhu, who used to wonder all over this nine islands, bringing the ecstacy of Love of Godhead everywhere. Actually when we are performing this Parikramas we are purifying the whole world, because the mercy of Caitanya Mahaprabhu and Nityananda Prabhu come from Mayapura dhama and spills out like a flood over the whole world. So, these Parikaramas are very special, and even though it is very hot, actually it doesn’t matter so much, and when we get back or when we go the Ganges and take a bath in a nice, cool, purifying, refreshing water we won’t mind, and when we get back we’ll have a smile on our faces, because we will be tired, but the nice thing about being tired in this way, is that there is no more energy for any Maya.
Devotees: (laughter, applause)
Harikesa Swami: Everybody likes not being in Maya, see. (Laughter) So, if we just stayed in temple all day, probably we wouldn’t do very much chanting, we wouldn’t be doing too much, everybody would just be wondering here and there, chanting to his neighbour about this and that, but when we are in the Parikrama we cannot talk to anybody because there is always kirtan going on, and you can’t talk to your neighbour because otherwise people in the back of you will push you over, and anyway it is very tired, who wants talk anything? And what’s so important to talk about anyway? Let’s just chant the holy name and remember Krishna.
So, this place is the place of pastime of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, the dhama, nama, the rupa, the lila, all of these characteristics, of the Lord manifested eternally here. When we are chanting the holy name of the Lord they are manifested anywhere. One who is fully absorbed in chanting the holy name, the Hare Krishna mantra, although he may be in a very strange place, actually has direct connection with the Supreme Lord. Gradually he will realize the Lord, but because we are not so expert, we come to Sridham Mayapura and here it is a very special place because it is very easy to chant here, and Mayapur is so nice because, Lord Caitanya, Lord Nityananda, They did not accept offences of a devotee, whereas in Vrindavana your offences are multiplied one hundred times in severity. of course I heard Prabupada once say ten times in severity, then I heard him say one hundred times in severity, but in any case if your offences are multiplied two times it is already bad. What to speak of the offence itself, which is in itself one times as bad. So, if we are here in Mayapur, our offences are not counted because of the mercy of Caitanya, Lord Nityananda uh, but when we leave Mayapura, if we take away the mentality... take away the mentality of taking advantage of the mercy of the Lord, then immediately Maya comes in, clobbers us on our head, therefore while we are here in Mayapur, we should not take advantage of the mercy of the Lord.
There are so many who stay in Navadvipa Dham, the nine islands of devotion and take advantage of that mercy, and are not very careful in the way they are dealing or in the way they are acting. Maybe they are not developed the loving devotion to the Lord so, but in Mayapur dhama, still some adjustment is made transcendentally, but we have to do a great work, we have to go preaching, we have to spread Krishna consciousness all over the world. So, here we have not come to take advantage of the Lord. We have come so that the Lord may take advantage of us, may take advantage in the sense that we are offering our body, our minds, our words, our whole consciousness, and saying, “My dear Lord Caitanya, my dear Lord Nityananda, we are Yours. Now, we are undergoing this austerity of parikrama although it is not such a big austerity. We are undergoing this austerity of parikrama because we want Your mercy, and when we leave this place we want to go back to our respective preaching field, and we want to glorify You by spreading Your holy name everywhere, by spreading Your transcendental literatures everywhere, by actually pleasing You, and You kindly reciprocate with us and give us Your mercy.” and when one actually gets the mercy of the Lord, he begins to realize the pastimes of the Lord, and he even sees that this Krishna consciousness movement is not different than the pastimes of the Lord.
In fact, this sankirtan movement is the pastime of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. It is just that we have to get a little more purified to see it, we have to become a little bit more purified. Do you know who we will see? We will see the pastimes of the Lord directly manifesting and we will see Lord Chaitanya uh, dancing and chanting and we will understand Radha-Krishna but as Narottama Dasa and other Acaryas have said they wish to get the mercy of Rupa Gosvami, Raghunatha Dasa Gosvami, the Gosvamis of Vrindavan, and then they will get the mercy of Nityananda Prabhu and then they will get the mercy to understand Caitanya Mahaprabhu as He is. Without going through this chain, of disciplic succession you cannot understand Caitanya Mahaprabhu.
Although one may hear, one may even uh, perform austerity, one may even preach but unless one gets the mercy of these acaryas in our disciplic succession, in other words first one must approach a spiritual master, we must approach Srila Prabhupada, then we must get the mercy of the predecessor acaryas by pleasing our spiritual master and he will call upon us the mercy of Rupa Gosvami and other Gosvamis and then we will able to please Nityananda Prabhu and get the mercy of Caitanya Mahaprabhu. So, this attitude of servitorship, this is the basis, the foundation upon which all advancement in spiritual life is made. Therefore when we are on... in Mayapur and Vrindavan we should not be thinking that we should be served because we are on vacation, actually we should want to serve.
To want to serve means, one has actually advanced, and to be on vacation means one has not understood anything. The only vacation is uh, the service of the Lord, and everything else is hard work. It’s like Parikram is not even hard work, it is nice, no matter the heat, you have… even now the cool breezes are coming so, to be on parikrama, this is actual vacation. To be chanting the holy name of the Lord, serving, even to help to serve prasadam, helping to keep everything nice and clean, this is real vacationing, this is the real nectar, the relaxation, and to just lay around or do nothing and engage in unnecessary talking, what this is... this is work. This is karma-bandhana, this is binding us to the material world, and work which is done for the satisfaction of Visnu, actually here the satisfaction is Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, this is freeing us from all reactions, therefore we cannot call it work, we have to call it bliss. Our eternal blissful position in relationship to the Supreme Lord, so let us take advantage of this, and every time when we go parikrama, when you come in the future years, and somebody says, “Oh, I don’t want to go to the parikrama because Acaryapada takes us around in circles (Laugh). We should understand those circles are ecstatic circles. You know, Krishna took the gopis around in circles too, when He was having the rasa dance. We do not want to equate the two activities, but just going around in circles in such is not bad, if it is done in full Krishna consciousness. And if one is thinking mundane circles, this is the duality, birth and death. You see, if you just go around in circles in the material world you are just taking birth and dying again, samsara. But, we go around in circles, circumambulating the holy dham and we are actually taking off, going right back home, back to Godhead. So, this activity is very transcendental, and we are all very, very, lucky to be here. Very lucky to take advantage of this activity. Very lucky that we are able to come. There are so many who have not come. So let us just with great enthusiasm complete our activity, and unfortunately we’ll be leaving in a few days. Let us try to beg for the mercy of the Lord, and somehow extract the nectar from the holy dhamas.
Devotees: (applause) Haribol!
Jayapataka Swami: Sri Navadvipa-dhama ki,
Jayapataka Swami: ISKCON Navadvipa dhama parikrama ki
Jayapataka Swami: Samaveta Bhakta Vrinda ki,
Jayapataka Swami: Srila Prabhupada ki
Jayapataka Swami: Nitai Gaur ki,
Jayapataka Swami: Gaur Pramanande, Hari Haribol
Devotees: Hari Haribol!
Devotee: Srila Acaryapada ki,
Jayapataka Swami: So, the plan is to go from here to the Ganges, Ganga Mayi ki
Jayapataka Swami: Just before we go, we’ll all lead the way, or Prabhupada will lead the way, and we will follow which is supposed to be a short cut, to be walking alongside the Ganga, and as the path around the Ganges side for those who are not into swimming or would like to hear some more of that... when they have the different sannyasis give some talks at that time, those who would like to do so. Just here before we leave this island of Rudradvipa, (inaudible) go to our next gear of going on the Ganges side. If we remember that this is the island of friendship, and that friendship in the material world means that actually it brings both pain and pleasure. When someone who is a friend, someone you love is suffering that gives you pain; when that person is happy then you feel happy. That’s the real friendship.
So, Krishna doesn’t want us to be miserable. Therefore He comes Himself. He send His devotees to give us mercy. Therefore, He is suhrt, He is our real friend.
jñātvā māṁ śāntim ṛcchati
He is the friend of all the living entities. So, sometimes a devotee... a living entity realizes that Krishna is the friend, the master, surrenders to Him, and (inaudible) enter into the pastimes of the Lord. Those pastimes are the real standard of friendship, of servitude, of parental love, and conjugal love, the real standard of love. Here, Caitanya Mahaprabu accepted Mother Saci as His mother and allowed her to worship Him in the mood of parental rasa, but Lord Caitanya’s mission was to be the friend of all the living entities, so He had to leave Navadvipa to preach, to go to Jagannath Puri, South India and other places. So, He decided to take sannyasa, and leave His loving mother and His loving wife.
So, when He left, Lord Caitanya came just by this village. He snuck night when everyone was asleep. He went here with only a few, trusted... four, five people, knew perfect the exact moment He was leaving. Everyone had apprehension, but no one could say at this time, only Nityananda, Mukunda, a few knew. So, when Lord Caitanya came, He came by this village and He crossed over the Ganges Ghats we are going to walk by. And, at that time Mother Saci, she... as soon as Lord Caitanya left their house, she felt some emptiness, she woke up. She looks, oh, there was Visnupriya alone, Lord Chaitanya wasn’t there. She knew like a thunderbolt striking her, that Caitanya Maharabhu has left.
“He is gone. Kothai! Kothai!” she started shouting out. “Where is Lord Chaitnya? Where is Nimai? Where is my Nimai? Where is my Visambhara? Where is He? Where is He?” And she went out. She didn’t thinking about what she was wearing, anything like that, she was just mad trying to find Lord Caitanya, finally she came wandering over the field, you see, and when she got to this village she was practically, senseless that time. She was just mad. It was the middle of the night. Everybody was asleep, but she was crying out to the trees, to the village, “Have you seen my Nimai, gone? Have you seen Him gone?” and she was crying like that, just mad in separation.
And when in this village, none of the trees, none of the people woke up, nobody said anything, then she said, “You are Nirdaya, you have no mercy on me, you are not telling me where is my Nimai.” and she just collapsed in separation, weeping. So, since that time this village, is know as Nirdaya or Nidaya, in short. The village that was chastised by mother Saci is having no mercy, because it couldn’t tell her where her beloved Nimai is. Of course, if you would offer Mother Saci something in exchange, if you give another boy, you adopt a son, or we will give you ticket to somewhere, if anything, you give her the whole world, she couldn’t care peanuts for it. She just wanted her Nimai, Visvambhara, because she is the eternal devotee of the Lord, and because of the that Lord Caitanya actually didn’t leave her but in bhava-rupa stayed with her always, and even accepted the prasada which was later proven that He was accepting the prasada she was offering everyday.
So sometimes we serve in separation. Sometimes we are serving in the presence, visible presence of our worshipable object, of the Lord, or even the spiritual master. Similar feelings are there because He the Svarupa of Krishna, therefore one has to have a spiritual master who is a pure devotee of Krishna and none other, so while we’re here at this village of Nirdaya, actually heading towards the Ganges. We can actually meditate on the mood of mother Saci, on how she was so completely absorbed, and think that, “Here we are in Navadvipa but we can’t see Lord Caitanya.”
Transcribed by Sadananda Krishna Prema Dasa
Revised by Jagannatha dasa Brahmacari