August 25, 2007

In celebration of Jhulan-yatra (Sri Sri Radha-Krsna’s swing festival), Srila Rupa Gosvami’s disappearance day and Baladeva Purnima, Srila Narayana Maharaja and his followers spent from August 24-28 in Vrndavana, at the Sri Rupa-Sanatana Gaudiya Matha.

On the first evening, Srila Maharaja spoke about the swing festival, on the following three evenings he and many well-known learned scholars from Vrndavana and Mathura spoke about the glories of Srila Rupa Gosvami, and on the morning of the 28th he spoke about the glories of Lord Balarama.

On August 25th, Srila Maharaja took the devotees to Sri Radha Damodara Temple. First they circumambulated the temple, stopping to offer obeisances to the many transcendental personalities whose samadhis are situated here. They visited the samadhis of Srila Jiva Gosvami, Srila Krsnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami, Srila Bhugarbha Gosvami, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura, and Srila Bhakti Pramoda Puri Maharaja.

Then they proceeded to Srila Rupa Gosvami’s samadhi. After Srila Maharaja offered his full obeisances, he was garlanded by the pujari there. He led the devotees in offering arati, and then he spoke about the glories of Srila Rupa Gosvami. His Hindi glorification was translated by Sripad Damodara Maharaja.



He said, “It is a matter of great fortune that today, the disappearance day of Srila Rupa Gosvami, we have had a chance to come here to discuss his glories. Who is Srila Rupa Gosvami and what is his contribution?

sthapitam yena bhu-tale
svayam rupah kada mahyam
dadati sva-padantikam

[“When will Sri Rupa Gosvami give me the shelter of his lotus feet? He understood the innermost desire of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, and established His mission in this world.” (Sri Prema-bhakti-candrika, Srila Narottama dasa Thakura)]

Srila Rupa Gosvami is that person who established Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s heartfelt intentions in this world.

prema-rasa-niryasa karite asvadana
raga-marga bhakti loke karite pracarana
rasika-sekhara krsna parama-karuna
ei dui hetu haite icchara udgama

[“The Lord's desire to appear was born from two reasons: the Lord wanted to taste the sweet essence of the mellows of love of God, and He wanted to propagate devotional service in the world on the platform of spontaneous attraction. Thus He is known as supremely jubilant and as the most merciful of all. (Caitanya-caritamrta, Adi-lila, 4-15-16)]

“Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu came to this world to taste the parakiya-bhava (paramour love), the unnatojjvala-rasa (pinnacle of loving devotion) of Srimati Radhika. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu came to taste the happiness She experienced in that. Mahaprabhu did not come to give the mood of Srimati Radhika to the jiva; that is impossible. Even the mood of Lalita and Visakha cannot be given to the jivas. The beauty or service of that mood, raga-marga, can be distributed to the jivas. This is what Mahaprabhu came to give.

”Srimati Radhika is the wish-fulfilling transcendental vine of pure devotion towards Krsna. The sakhis are like the leaves, buds, and flowers on the vine of Srimati Radhika.

“The manjaris, which sway back and forth in the breeze, are the real beauty of the vine or creeper. Similarly, the manjaris (maidservants of Srimati Radharani) are the real beauty of the vine of Radhika’s love. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu came to distribute their service, and He did so through the writings of Srila Rupa Gosvami.

“At the time of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, most people thought that parakiya-rasa (the paramour love between Krsna and the gopis) was contemptible. The worst thing in this world is for a woman to leave her husband and go with another man, but this transcendental parakiya-rasa is not like that. Otherwise, why would Srila Sukadeva Gosvami, the crest-jewel of transcendental personalities, speak about this before the assembly of 88,000 Rsis and transcendental personalities like Parasa Rsi, Vyasadeva, Narada Rsi, Vasistha Rsi, and Gautama Rsi. These sages are paramahamsas, topmost swanlike pure devotees. Srila Rupa Gosvami gave evidence from Srimad-Bhagavatam that this parakiya-rasa is completely transcendental and pure.

“Krsna is the essence and the beginning of all incarnations. He is the cause of all causes. There is no reason for Him to come from Goloka Vrndavana to this world to taste the disgusting mood of a mundane woman leaving her husband. Krsna is the source of all incarnations. The gopis are nothing but direct personified forms of Krsna’s own energy. The relationship between Krsna and the gopis is not mundane at all. It was Srila Rupa Gosvami who gave the evidence for this.

“The Srimad-Bhagavatam states that the gopis left their husbands, brothers, mothers, and other seniors to run to the forest to please Krsna. The gopis came to meet Krsna in the forest, at which time Krsna told them, “You should go back and serve your husbands and family members. They are looking for you.” But they did not go.

“Srila Rupa Gosvami established that parakiya-bhava is glorified in the Srimad-Bhagavatam. By his writings, especially in Sri Ujjvala-nilamani, he established this in this world.”

After speaking, Srila Maharaja went to have darsana of Sri Sri Radha Damodara, the Deities of Srila Jiva Gosvami.

He then went to the room of Srila Prabhupada Bhaktivedanta Svami Maharaja and, standing outside the room, he spoke about his relationship with Srila Prabhupada.

Outside Srila Prabhupada’s room

Editorial Advisors: Pujyapad Madhava Maharaja, Sripad Brajanath dasa and Sri Prema Prayojana dasa
Reporter: Vasanti dasi
Translator of the excerpts of Srila Maharaja’s class: Sripad Damodara Maharaja
Photographer and video maker: Vasanti and Anita dasis
Editor: Syamarani dasi