The following is a class given by H.H. Jayapataka Swami Maharaja on June 22nd , 1981 in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia. The class begins with a reading from the Srimad Bhagavatam, canto 1, chapter 4 , text 14, part 1.
Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 1.4.14
sūta uvāca dvāpare samanuprāpte tṛtīye yuga-paryaye jātaḥ parāśarād yogī vāsavyāḿ kalayā hareḥ
Translation by His Divine Grace Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada:
Sūta Gosvāmī said: When the second millennium overlapped the third, the great sage [Vyāsadeva] was born to Parāśara in the womb of Satyavatī, the daughter of Vasu.
Purport by Srila Prabhupada :
There is a chronological order of the four millenniums, namely Satya, Dvāpara, Tretā and Kali. But sometimes there is overlapping. During the regime of Vaivasvata Manu, there was an overlapping of the twenty-eighth round of the four millenniums, and the third millennium appeared prior to the second. In that particular millennium, Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa also descends, and because of this there was some particular alteration. The mother of the great sage was Satyavatī the daughter of the Vasu (fisherman), and the father was the great Parāśara Muni. That is the history of Vyāsadeva's birth. Every millennium is divided into three periods, and each period is called a sandhyā. Vyāsadeva appeared in the third sandhyā of that particular age.
Thus end the purport by Srila Prabupada of canto 1 chapter 4 text 14 of the Srimad Bhagavatam.
So, this is describing the appearance of Vyasadeva. Vyasadeva, they say, is the incarnation of Hari, of the personality of Godhead; he comes down for the purpose of compiling and writing the vedic literatures.
Before, it was not necessary to write them, because the people’s memory was so clear and sharp that they would not forget whatever they heard. But in the kaliyuga, he could see that the people are the short-lived, unfortunate and also they had also poor memory. Therefore it is necessary to write down the Vedas, in order to protect the culture and to give the people a chance to get back to home, back to Godhead. So, he divided the one Veda into four, and then he also compiled the fifth Veda, the history , the puranas and so on. So, Vyasadeva, in this way, he is known as the origin of spiritual master, because he is Krsna's expansion, and because he has given us the Vedas, which are the source of all knowledge.
An example, Srila Prabupada once told us that , actually the fact that people could simply remember what they heard is not so wonderful because even he about the 70 years ago, or 50 years ago, he saw one instance , where there was one , Britisher... two Britishers, they were arguing with each other and there was one sage, he was taking bath in the river; and they had a fight, and there was some violence, so a court case ensued.
So they called this sage as a witness, so the sage said, “I know what they said; I don’t know any English. I can only vibrate the sounds that I heard at that time, and then he perfectly vibrated the sounds that he heard when they were fighting. Although he didn’t even know English; just he heard the sounds, and on that basis, the case was judged. So you can imagine what a sharp memory! As good as a tape recorder or better. So, that was just within recent history, what to speak of 5000 years ago. But Generally speaking, people forget from one day to the next, if you ask someone what he did exactly one week ago, at this time, (of course, for the devotee it is easy because at this time, we do the same thing everyday (a mataji chuckles) generally speaking. But for regular people, it is very hard, because they have no regulated life and they have no good memory. So, Vyasadeva, knowing all these things, he had already planned to write the Vedas down. So, there are always three things: sadhu, shastra and guru; they are checks and balances. The basis is the shastra.
Srila Prabhupada said that the spiritual master is like a professor. Simply by reading shastra, it is difficult for one to come to a conclusion, because they are so vast; therefore it is necessary to have also a professor, who is expert. Just like Arjuna, when he a quoted so many Vedic understandings about what he should do and shouldn’t do, but ultimately he was confused. So its not enough; its not simply scholastic or pedantic or education through book-reading that one can understand what is the purpose of the Vedas. To really clear the doubts, one also needs the spiritual master, but the spiritual master, just like Krishna, when he was preaching to Arjuna, He would always quote the previous authorities and the Vedas, just like that. He said, “ proktam aham avyayam,” before this was also spoken. Not that Krishna was... although He is Himself, aham sarvasya prabhava.... the source of everything matah prakram nanyat.. there is no higher truth than Him; still He is referring to higher authorities. Higher authorities mean previous authorities. That is to instruct us that this is the vedic system; no one is independent, even Krishna Himself is referring to Vedas. Why? Because He has given the Vedas for that purpose, as a check, as a reference that everything is supposed to be done according to the Vedas. Simply the spiritual master, like an expert lawyer or professor who knows spiritually what is the Vedas and who its practicing that is particular part of the vedic culture, you see. Therefore, He guides the disciples according to the Vedas through the path of God consciousness.
So, when one wants to choose spiritual master, then one will see what are the qualities in the Vedas and then one will also discuss with the other saintly people, the sadhus, and then one can say who is guru. When one wants to know what is the meaning of the Vedas, one will read the Vedas, but will not able to understand; therefore approaches the guru and the sadhus and then understands the Vedas. One has to know who is a saintly person; that can also be understood from the Vedas and from the spiritual master, what he is saying is correct or not. So, in this way, these three are always there to give us some check and balance. So, the basis however, is the shastra. No one can say that the shastra we don’t accept; if anyone says that, that is a great offense. Shastra is the always at the absolute position, because that is directly given by the incarnation ok Krishna Vyasadeva. That is the basis.
So, everything must be guided according to sadhu, shastra and guru, keeping the shastra in the forefront. This is the basic system. Therefore Srila Prabhupada, as soon as he came, immediately started to translate shastra: the Srimad Bhagavatm, Bhagavad gita, Caitanya Charitamrita, Isopanishad, Nectar of devotion, because books are the basis.
This Krishna consciousness movement is not based on sentiment; it is based upon spiritual knowledge, upon Vedas, the books of knowledge, ancient knowledge, which is coming down since the Vedic creation itself, and was written only 5,000 years ago, but before that it was also existing in the ether in sound. So, this is the very wonderful thing. People ask, “How old is your religion? How old is your culture?” So, we tell them, “Well, Bhagavad-gita was is written 5000 years ago.” But actually it is Santana; there's no beginning and there's no end. This is eternal religious principles, especially those principles which are given in the Srimad Bhagavatam. Those principles are the same principles that are practiced in the spiritual sky. In other Vedas, there may be sacrifices meant for elevation to heavenly planets. And when this universe is destroyed, also the heavenly planets are destroyed. But the topics about Krishna consciousness are never destroyed, because even when this universe is destroyed, one is transferred back to the spiritual sky by the mercy of Krishna consciousness of the pure devotees.
So, this material world is very difficult to cross over; very difficult (pause). But Krishna says, “mayam etam taranti te. Mamevaya prapadyante mayam etam taranti te.” That one who takes shelter of me easy, easily I deliver him out of this material world. Mama mayam duratyaya. Someone who takes shelter of Me, I deliver him. This is Krsna's special mercy, that he is delivering who ever takes shelter. So, how one takes shelter? This of course, we see that when Krishna was personally present and He was personally demanding that sarva-dharman parityajya mam ekam saranam vraja, aham tvam sarva-papebhyo moksayisyami ma sucah, one completely surrender to Krishna and then one will be delivered. We also pray to Caitanya Mahaprabhu “namo maha badnaya Krsna prema pradhayate, krishnaya Krishna chaitanya namine gaur tvishe namo namah” Why? Because Chaitanya Mahaprabhu is more merciful than even Krsna himself. Krishna was saying, “Surrender unto me, I will deliver you,” but Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu, he is giving pure Love for Krishna. Very easily, simply by chanting “Hare Krishna Mahamantra and desiring to surrender to Krishna. Simply by desiring perfection.
Prabhupada said for the children sometimes you have to give them the dessert first ; when there's a big feast, they children want to first have the sandesh and sweets; they are not patient to eat through all the sabjis and everything else , so first you have give them the sweet. Then you can go on to the sabjis. The children have a sweet tooth. So like that, here krishna has given us first the sweets, first the nectar, you see. Then after we are attracted to Krishna consciousness, after attracted to Krsna, developed some devotion, then we have come back and then further refinement is there; get rid of the anarthas. But first we're given the sweets, that is ecstasy from chanting, then from the association of vaishnavas; then, after having some sweets, then we go back, clean up our act, so to speak. Clean up all the anarthas. And then get permanently situated in the nectar of devotion.
So, Caitanya Mahaprabhu is most kind; but chaitanya Mahaprabhu, he didn’t personally write any literature. All he wrote was the Sikhastaka, the 8 shalokas, which we chant every morning. But he ordered his associates like Rupa Goswami, Sanatan Goswami, Jiva Goswami, Gopal Bhata Goswami to write vedic literatures. And all the other devotees like Srinivas Acharya, Narottama Das thakura , Shyamananda Pandit , He ordered them to preach and distribute those literatures. So, Srinivas Acharya, he was the disciple of Gopal Bhatta Goswami; he is different from the Srivas from the Panca Tattva. It's not Srivas pandit. It’s Srnivas acharya. So, he was first one to bring all the books of the Goswamis to Bengal and to eastern states, he was accompanied by Narottama Das Thakura, and also by Shyamananda Pandit .
Shyamananda Pandit was also a great devotee; he, at a very early age , he approached his mother father and said that, “I want to take initiation from Hridaya Caitanya Das.” And of course, they had their mixed feelings, but overall, they were very pleased that “Our son at such an early age has already decided that he wants to take spiritual master.” So, on his own choice, they allowed him that he went to the Ashrama of Ambika Kalna. Hridaya Caitanya Das is a great devotee of Lord Chaitanya , he is the disciple of Gauri Das pandit . You know Gauri das pandit ? He was Subal in Krsna lila, the friend of Krsna. He is famous because he demanded that lord Caitanya and Lord Nityananda have to stay with him, because he wants to always talk with them and offer them foodstuff, because they were his friends. They said, “If we stay here, then what about other devotees? So then he said , “at least you have to give me a deity,” Then Lord Caitanya said , “Well, how can I give you deity in my presence? I have come here as a devotee, not as the Lord.” Then he(Gauridas Pandit) said, “ I don't know all these things, either you two have to stay here, or leave me me a deity.. Because he had a friendly relationship with Lord caitanya, these type of affectionate dealings could be there. So Lord Caitanya, He agreed and they went and they constructed one deity , Nitai Gaura.(two deities, one pair) Life-size, seven feet! Beautiful! Out of neem wood. One huge tree. While carving, they were personally modeling.
When it was finished, He begged permission, “Please allow me to go.” Subal, I mean Gauridas Pandit, he said, “No, you stay. Your deities are non-different from you, yes?
“Let them go.”
So then Lord Caitanya and Lord Nityananda , they agreed , “All right.” They raised their arms and they became as if wood, and the deities, they became moveable and they walked off. And then, after that he ran after the moving forms and said, “No, you stay. Let them go.”(devotees laugh). They said all right. Then again they became deity and the other, they started walking off. Haribol! NO, no no. You must stay. You don't go! They said , “All right.” They raised their hands , they became wooden in appearance, and the others became moveable and walked off. OH, no no no... Please don't go. You stay.
“All right.” Now they raised their hands, and the other... then finally he paid obeisances and said , “All right.” What can I do? You are the inconceivable Lord. So then he installed those deities and was worshipping. And Hridaya Caitanya was a disciple( of Gauridas Pandit). Hridaya Caitanya used to be known as Hridaya Ananda. Hridaya means heart , ananda, pleasure, bliss. So Hridayaananda was... decided one day, when Gauridas Pandit was out, for a few days, just visiting disciples, that on Gaura Purnima, there should be a special festival. So he told all the villagers to bring different types of rice and milk, and sugar, gur, and different things and have a big festival..kirtan would be held. So , Gauridas Pandit, when he came back, he saw that already.. he heard about this plan. He was overly angry.
Inwardly, he was pleased that it was good service, but the disciples shouldn't just do things without asking.. that was his point. So he said that, “No. Cancel this program. How can you do these things? You never consulted with me? You've become independent. Next time you will do something unauthorized, you will fall in Maya. One has to always follow the instruction of the Acharya, the previous Acharyas. Very important, to keep in line with the mood of the previous Acharyas. So he didn't ask any permission. And in this way, he might do something unauthorized. So Hridayananda simply went to the side of the Ganges and he was simply chanting Japa, feeling very fallen for having offended the spiritual master. But in the meantime, so many boatloads coming right on the bank of the Ganges, south of Mayapur, just opposite from our Shantipur. Bullock carts.. the different provisions started to pile up into a big mountain. And so Gauridas Pandit said , “What can we do?” They are already coming. Tell all these people bring back, and say not to give to Krsna? So he called Hridayaananda and said , “ All right, have your festival.” Haribol! Haribol! So then they had a huge kirtan by the side of the Ganges. And everyone was jumping and kirtan became so ecstatic. Spinning around and jumping. Dozen mridangas and karatals. And literally hundred people, you see.
In the mean time, Gauridas pandit, he had prepared some bhoga; was bringing the bhoga in to offer to Nitai Gaura, the deity. When he went into the temple , he looked. Nitai Gaura were not there?! “Where's Nitai Gaura? Where's Nitai Gaura? Where have They gone? Kuthai gelo Nitai Gaura? Where have they gone? He was astonished. The deities are not here. ”
He ran out , looked everywhere. Where did the deities go? Someone stole them or what? There he saw Hridayaananda, and his big kirtan party. Amidst the kirtan party , there was the deities Nitai Gaura! Dancing in kirttan! Hare Krsna Hare Krsna Krsna Krsna Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare(Jayapataka Maharaja sings the Mahamantra twice). Jumping and dancing amongst the devotees, you see, but the other devotees, they couldn't even see the deities.
Gauridas Pandit , he became furious! He picked up his stick and he ran after Nitai Gaura! He said, “Then you were trying to cheat me; now you're going to run off again!(devotees laugh). Immediately get back in the temple now! (devotees laugh again) Your prasadam is waiting! Nitai Gaura, they saw him running with the stick and they became afraid. Lord Caitanya immediately hid inside the heart of Hridyananda, you see. From that moment , he became known as Hridaya Caitanya, because in his heart , Caitanya went. Gauridas said, “Don't hide! Immediately get back in the temple!'' (devotees laugh) They all ran, the two, no one knowing what's going on, (Jayapataka Maharaja laughs) He's (Gauridas Pandit) running down with a stick, chasing the air, because others are not seeing Lord Caitanya and Lord Nityananda. So they ran back in the temple and became visible to everyone, you see.
Gauridas said, “Don't try to leave this temple again! Don't try to cheat me! Otherwise how will I talk to you? Who will I offer this prasad to? Who will I offer service to? How will I live? Don't you know that... don't you know what this will do to me? You want to leave me all alone! And then he.. he was very angry, you see, that his friends were doing this to him(devotees laugh again). Didn't consider! Who can understand when Krsna and his friends are having these pastimes? Who can understand how some devotee can be... connected with Krsna as a friend not consider, friend means, they don't consider that Krsna is superior to me; they consider, “Krsna is my friend. He's my equal.” In just pure love, they're acting. Who can understand this type of relationship? You see, of course, some devotees are there with dasya, servant like Hanuman, and they always have fear and respect for the Lord. Then there's a great devotee as a friend of Krsna and doesn't have that fear, you see. He's only thinking, just like if some friend is running off without taking meal, “How you're running off without taking meal? Come on back! Sit down and eat first! Like that! Just a friend.
That was the mood of Gauridas Pandit with Lord Caitanya. We can touch his (Gauridas Pandit's) lotus feet and meditate on the dust of his lotus feet and pray that we can get some Krsna consciousness to understand the pastimes of Lord Caitanya.
So this is Hridayaananda, Hridaya Caitanya. So that... Shyamananda , his previous name was duhkhi Krsna das. Sad servant of Krsna. I don't know why 'duhkhi', sad. I guess he was always in separation, and so he was called Duhkhi Krsna das. Anyway, that was his name. He went to Hridaya Caitanya and fell at his feet and begged . “Please give me initiation, “ you see.
So then Hridaya Caitanya, he initiated him, but very quickly, he sent him with letter to Vrindavana, to Jiva Goswami, requesting Jiva Goswami, “You please train him up in Radha Krsna worship, in the science of Bhagavatam (so he can preach here) and send him back. So, in this way, Shyamananda , he went to Vrindavana, Srinivas Acharya , you know how he went to Vrindavana? A long story.. he was looking, he first went to Puri to find Lord Caitanya, but Caitanya disappeared and he went and found Gadadhar Pandit. Then Gadadhara pandit didn't have the Bhagavatam, so sent him back to Navadvipa to get the Bhagavatam; then again he came back , Gadadhar pandit had disappeared. He almost died in separation. And at that time, he again went back to Navadvip and he was shattered and he was told to go to Rupa and Sanatana in Vrindavana , but they had also disappeared. There Jiva Goswami was told by Rupa and Sanatana that he should take Srinivas Acharya to Gopal Bhatta Goswami and should be initiated by him. And he should instruct him more. So in this way , Srinivas Acharya , finally he was in Vrindavana. (End of part 1 of this lecture)