So today is Sri Advaita’s day. Advaita Acarya, he was a very great soul and He was the avatar of Mahavishnu and Sadasiva. He was born in Bangladesh in a place called Mahia… that is in the north and now it is called Sylhet 3 miles from the Indian border. It is on a sacred river. After some time beside the house in Shantipur he also had a house in Navadweep. He saw that people were very much materialistic and he wanted to give them love of Krishna. But he could not get to change their hearts. He could give liberation but in order to give them love of Krishna that was not easy – only Krishna can do that. (Is there Russian translation there? Who is the translator, raise your hand. Okay. So anyone who needs Russian translation go there.) Any way, he started to worship the Shaligramshila with Ganges water and Tulasi manjaris and he was also fasting and loudly chanted the Holy Names and with his loud chanting, fasting and worshipping of Shaligramshila he said if my name is Advaita which means non different then I will bring the Supreme Lord down. On the adivas day of the Lord during the fire sacrifices it is customary to remember how Advaita Gosia was doing tapasya and loudly chanting the Holy Names and fasted and worshipped the Shaligramshila for the advent of Lord Caitanya. Gauranga! Gauranga! Gauranga! While he was doing this, also in Kuliya? Was Haridas Thakur who was also chanting for the coming of the Lord. So in this way Advaita Acarya got confirmation that the Lord is coming, Krishna is coming in His most merciful incarnation, His most merciful form of Gauranga! Gauranga! Gauranga! So that was one side. Meanwhile he had six children of which three were devotees and three were more like caste brahmanas following the smarta system. There is no guarantee to get a devotee as a child. So we try and we pray and if we are successful we can get a Krishna conscious child but there is no guarantee. So Acyutananada, he was the one and then I think Krishna Misra, and like that three were devotees. So the present… who of you went to Shantipur? Today it is very auspicious to take the prasad there on this tithi – you also ate the prasad there? Hari bol! By eating prasada there on this day, the disappearance day of Madhavendra Puri, you get Krishna Prema or you get Bhakti - pure devotion.
So in Shantipur, that was where Advaita Acarya lived mainly, it says that Shantipur was famous for being having a very …and being very critical of the Vaishnavas. It was a tough place. Later when Lord Caitanya He came back from Gaya and He was initiated by Ishwara Puri Maharaj at that time He started to display His devotion. So He was a changed person. Up to that time He was living as Nimai Pandit, He was showing his learning and scholarly skills and He could defeat anyone and everyone in Grammar. Senior Vaishnavas like Srivas Acarya and Advaita Acarya, He showed them respect and Srivas …. Because if you are a devotee you could do so much.. Nimai Pandit said if I meet my guru, a Vaishnava guru, I will become a Vaishnava. Lord Caitanya was looking for a guru and finally he took initiation from Ishwara Puri Maharaj. Ishwara Puri was the disciple of Madhavendra Puri. After accepting initiation He became a very docile person. Also he saw Krishna in Karanaksha? … Krishna came up and hugged him and He became mad after Krishna. He went after Him and Krishna, He disappeared. After that Lord Caitanya came back. He was completely different from the Nimai Pandit people knew. He was devotionally inclined and He was showing so much ecstasy.
One day He came out and told the brother of Srivas who was Sriram Pandit, He told him to go to Advaita Gosai and tell him that the person for whom he was fasting and chanting and worshipping the Shaligramshilas with Tulasi manjaris and Ganges water, that person is now here in Navadweep. So Sriram went and somehow located the house of Advaita Gosai and there in the courtyard he saw Advaita Gosai worshipping his Shaligramshila. Sriram came in and paid his obeisances. Advaita jumped up and said: How do I know it is you? How do I know it is you? Sriram had not said anything and was quite amazed why Advaita was saying the same thing. But then finally Advaita accepted and asked him what message do you have Sriram? That person who you are worshipping all day with Tulasi manjari and Ganges water, and chanting, that person is now in Navadweep! And Advaita jumped up and he said Hari bol! Hari bol! Hari bol! I brought Him down! I BROUGHT HIM DOWN! I BROUGHT HIM DOWN! Hari bol! …But how do I know it is Him? Maybe I was fasting and chanting and praying but how do I know He is really here. You tell Him I am not coming. Tell Him I will not go! I will hide in the village. I will hide and if He is really my Lord He will find me and He will put Hi feet on my head and I will see Him and His transcendental body and I will see this is my Lord. His wife Sita Thakurani was standing next to him with an arati tray…. Meanwhile Sriram Pandit he came and he wanted to tell Lord Caitanya that Advaita is not coming but Lord Caitanya just looked at him and said : Come out Narayana come on! Advaita Acarya come on. So then he came out and he was like a little timid and he paid his obeisances and the Lord put His foot on his head and he looked up and saw the whole world had disappeared and there was only Lord Caitanya and the Brahman effulgence from His body and there were Nityananda and other associates holding chamara in the prayer. He saw this and realized this is the Lord, this is the Lord, Hari bol! I brought Him down! Hari bol! Hari bol! Hari bol! Hari bol! So then he did arati and that arati lasted for 22 hours. Ha! Ha!.. No 21 hours! So that was a super arati and we celebrate that arati at the time of the Sandhya arati : Kiba jaya jaya Gaura Chander Aarati ko shobha! So at that time Lord Caitanya showed who He really was to many people - many associates, otherwise He would hide Himself in the garb of a Vaishanava, a devotee. So normally to Advaita Acarya He would offer all respect as Advaita Acarya was initiated by His guru’s guru. So He took Advaita to be higher in the rank. So He offered him obeisances and respect but Advaita always thought that Lord Caitanya is my senior – He is the Original Personality of Godhead and I am just the expansion of His expansion. So he was always offered respect by Lord Caitanya. One time just to get Lord Caitanya to disrespect him, he began to speak the Patanjali yoga system and little mixed with mayawad. So he was speaking of the yoga with the mayawad and Lord Caitanya came after him with a stick: you don’t speak this nonsense anymore. So he was very happy that he was being disrespected.
One time Lord Caitanya had fallen down in ecstasy and at that time Advaita, he took the dust of Lord Caitanya’s lotus feet and he thought this is my chance, I can get His dust and so he took the dust! But when Lord Caitanya came back to His external consciousness, He said: someone stole my bhakti, some one took my bhakti, I don’t have any bhakti, what is the use of living without My bhakti and He ran to the Ganges and then Nityananda ran after Him. And all the devotees started to catch up but they weren’t as fast as Lord Caitanya. So Lord Caitanya dived into the Ganges with all His clothes on and Lord Nityananda dived after Him and all the other devotees and came and saw circles – they didn’t know where to go! They looked and looked and looked and could not see! They looked again and again but could not see, where is He? Where is He? They came away. Then Lord Caitanya came up and swam to the shore, and next came Lord Nityananda … okay come on! They hid in the house of Nandan Acarya and They stayed there and then They called Srivas – I think it was Srivas – and They asked him what is happening? Srivas said, My Lord you are alive, you are okay, the devotees think You took Your lives. They are very much beside themselves. Especially, Advaita, he is not eating, he is not sleeping and crying I don’t know, what have I done? What have I done? He is rolling on the ground and crying my Lord. He is in a very pitiful condition. After some time, Lord Caitanya said : you can tell him We are still here. I think he has learned a lesson. So after Lord Caitanya took sanyas He did not like to stay away from the Ganges, He said that those who live by the Ganges, they have more devotion and they chant Hare Krishna…
Lord Nityananda walked ahead of Lord Caitanya and told some cowherd boys there that when Lord Caitanya asks them which is the way to Vrindavan, point south, Vrindavan is the other way, it is north. And they knew Nitai was telling a lie because the Yamuna is on the other side. So any way Nityananda dived into the Ganges and swam to the other shore which was Mayapur and then he got Mother Sachi and brought her to Shantipur. Meanwhile Lord Caitanya came looking and crying: Vrndavan kothaay? Where is Vrndavan? The cowherd boys pointed south(Guru maharaj made a gesture with his finger, Ha! Ha!). So he went to Shantipur and there He wondered what is Advaita doing here, in Vrindavan? Ha! Ha! Then He realized, I am not in Vrindavan, I am in Shantipur! Ha! Ha! I got cheated! That Nityananda, He cheated me! Then He said to Advaita I have been cheated. This is not Vrindavan! Also this side is the Yamuna, so it is not different from Bengal and they come over to Shantipur . Advaita said please take your meal here and he said now you are a sanyasi, we should serve you. And He said, yes as I am a sanyasi give Me just a little sak, little rice, little dal and one sabzi, I am a sanyasi and I should eat austerely. Sure! Ha! Ha! Nityananda came and said I haven’t eaten for three days, I want an opulent spread, I don’t want this simple prasad! I want a big spread! I am hungry! So there was this contrast. Meanwhile Mother Saci and Sita Thakurani they cooked a big feast and Advaita served the rice, sabzis and dals and chutneys and things to Lord Caitanya and Lord Nityananda and Lord Caitanya said this is too much! I told you I am a sanyasi and I have to eat very austere. Advaita said, eat whatever You want and leave the rest. And Lord Nityananda, He said, what is this? What is this? Ki holo ei shob! I said I needed prasad, I am hungry! So then he was taking prasad and Advaita as soon as he would finish one bowl, he would fill it up! And so it was hard to keep track how much he ate as the bowls were always full. So Lord Caitanya was eating and giving it to him and saying I feel very full! But Lord Nityananda said, I am so hungry and they are not feeding me! He threw some rice on Advaita. So Advaita came dancing and said I got the chishtha, the remnants from Lord Nityananda! Hari bol! Hari bol! Hari bol! So this way Lord Caitanya and Lord Nityananda They were enjoying the pastime. So that place we saw today, is called the theen prabhur vishraam sthaan. The three prabhus – Lord Caitanya, Nityananda and Advaita, they sat and took prasad.
Actually we were told by the father of this present sevak, Shanti Chakra Goswami, he was the previous sevak, he said that well I will give you that place, later his advisors said, don’t give them. At one point he was going to give us but we had to establish the deity of Lord Caitanya, Nityananda and Advaita. And we were worried that if we had the temple and deities there would be some distraction with the Advaita deity so like that…Then they said you can have in the old Ganges but nothing happened. In any case that is the ancient house of Lord Advaita and Lord Caitanya visited there on many occasions. Most significant is after He took sanyas and also today, Govinda Dwadasi.
Of course there are also many pastimes when Advaita went to Jagannath Puri and he would cook and feed Lord Caitanya. Advaita was very much devotional for Lord Caitanya and he had the excuse that He was a sanyasi so we have to respect the sayansis. We are very much grateful to Advaita Gosai that he has come and brought Lord Caitanya down from the spiritual world. Sri Advaita Gosai ki jai!
Doya koro Sitapati Advaita Gosai, Tava kripa bale pai Caitanya Nitai!
So that is a little gist, nectar about Advaita Gosai. Any questions? I will take one. Okay two. One from the men and one from the ladies!
Devotee: Why Advaita prabhu has beard?
GM: Bhakti Siddhantha Saraswati Thakur, he said that Advaita did not have a beard regularly, he would be shaved up . Prabhupad said that probably one time Advaita decided to have a beard. I put it up this year to the GBC of Mayapur that since Prabhupad said that he always based his instructions on Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur and since he said that Advaita did not live in an ashram and he was not so learned about deity worship and since this is an aspect of deity worship, so he was saying at least in Bengal he should be allowed not have a beard. So let us see what the GBC says. Ladies, question?
Devotee: I heard that Advaita Acarya had two wives and they both became spiritual masters?
GM: Nityananda, He also had two wives – Vasudha and Jahnava. But I forget the name of Advaita Acarya’s other wife. In those days it was allowed to marry more than once and sometimes two sisters would marry the same husband. So this was what happened here. In case of NItyananda, both the sisters Vasudha and Jahnava both wanted to marry Nitai – they are Revati and (Varuni) from the spiritual world. Advaita had Sita Thakurani and I forget the name of the other one – Sridevi. But I know that Nityananda’s wife Jahnava was a guru but I don’t know particularly if Advaita Acarya’s wife was.
Devotee: The book called Prema Vilas…
GM: The book Prema Vilas I don’t know. This book on Nityananda is also produced by some so called ISKCON but I don’t know. But that is not accepted as a bonafide book. Nityananda Bhagavat or something..So there are some books which are not acceptable but somehow they get published.
Jaya Raseswari Devi Dasi - 18/03/2011