Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja
Disappearance Day of Sri BaladevaVidyabhusana
The following is Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja's glorification of Sri Baladeva Vidyabhusana Prabhu from the preface of his book, Sri Utkalika-vallari.
My supremely worshipable Gurudeva nitya-lila-pravista om visnupada astottara-sata Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja demonstrated his veneration for Sri Gaudiya Vedanta and for sri-gaudiya-vedantacarya Srila Baladeva Vidyabhusana Prabhu by using Prabhu’s name in establishing the society ‘Sri Gaudiya Vedanta Samiti’ and also in awarding his sannyasa disciples the title ‘Sri Bhaktivedanta.’ He wrote an article entitled Gaudiya-vedantacarya Sri Baladeva, in which he says, “Sri-gaudiya-vedantacarya Baladeva Vidyabhusana has an unbreakable relationship with Sri Gaudiya Vedanta Samiti, and because he is a rupanuga Vaisnava, the Samiti has completely embraced his conduct and concepts and his method of bhajana. His stature as a follower of Sri Rupa Gosvami is proven in his voluminous writings.” He also writes, “When we talk about Sri Baladeva Vidyabhusana Prabhu, the first thing that comes to our mind is his commentary on Vedanta called Sri Govinda-bhasya, for which he is held in great repute by the Vaisnavas of the four sampradayas.”
Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura, who is non-different from sri gaura-sakti Gadadhara, has proclaimed, “Vidyabhusana Mahasaya is a special luminous star in the Gaudiya Sampradaya. After the Six Gosvamis, no one has done welfare for the sampradaya as he has. By this, we understand he must be one of the eternal associates of Sriman Mahaprabhu.”Srila Baladeva Vidyabhusana Prabhu, in Jaipur at Galta-pahad, hoisted the victory flag for the Gaudiya Vaisnava Sampradaya, and in doing so he established its eminent position within the Madhva Sampradaya. This service to the sampradaya proves that he is indeed a rupanuga-gaudiya-vaisnava.
Sri Baladeva Prabhu was the initiated disciple of Sri Radha-Damodara, who is in the family of Syamananda, the follower of Sriman Mahaprabhu. Syamananda Prabhu was under the guidance of the one-pointed rupanuga Srila Jiva Gosvami; this connection proves that Srila Baladeva Prabhu is also a rupanuga Vaisnava. Furthermore, Sri Baladeva Vidyabhusana was the prominent siksa disciple of Sri Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura, who is well-known as ‘the second Sri Rupa.’ Therefore, there is no doubt about Sri Baladeva being rupanuga. Attaining the mercy of Sri Govinda-deva, who is the treasure of Sri Rupa Gosvami’s life, he was able to keep the Deity’s seva going without break. What doubt can remain regarding Sri Baladeva’s position as rupanuga when he has attained the mercy of both Sri Rupa Gosvami as well as his worshipable Çri Govindaji? He belonged to both the pancaratrika- (diksa) and bhagavat-paramparas (siksa), the two streams flowing together in him; yet he established the authenticity and the charm of bhagavat-parampara, which, as it is founded on the degree of proficiency in bhajana, is superior to pancaratrika.
Srila Baladeva Vidyabhusana Prabhu has delineated the system of disciplic succession in his Prameya-ratnavali. By this it is clearly seen that the commentator, Sri Baladeva, is immersed in the Vedic teachings accepted in the Gaudiya line, and he is the emperor of the Gaudiya Vaisnava acaryas. Our worshipable srila gurupada-padma om visnupada astottara-sata Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja has written a verse in praise of him:
sri madhva sampradaya sri-caitanya-kula-raksakah
vedantacarya-sardulo baladevo mahamatih
“All glories to Sri Baladeva Vidyabhusana, who is the opulence of the Sri Madhva Sampradaya, the decoration of Sri Caitanya-deva’s dynasty, the protector of the Sri Gaudiya Vaisnava Sampradaya, and a great-minded, lion-like acarya.”
Srila Gurupada-padma also said that any sampradaya that is reluctant to accept Srila Baladeva as rupanuga is actually in error and is making an offense to a Vaisnava. Therefore, understanding such sampradaya to be bad association one should reject it and in this way show his real faith to Srila Baladeva Prabhu. It has also been told that Mahaprabhu’s associate, Sri Gopinatha Misra, who along with Sarvabhauma had heard Mahaprabhu speak His commentary on Vedanta-sutra, later on appeared as Srila Baladeva Vidyabhusana, the Brahma Sampradaya’s commentator.
Srila Baladeva Vidyabhusana’s writings include Sri Govinda-bhasya; Suksma-tika; Siddhanta-ratnam and its commentary Bhasya-pithakam; Sahitya-kaumudi; Vyakarana-kaumudi; commentaries on Tattva-sandarbha and Isopanisad; Siddhanta-darpamam; Kavya-kaustubha; Gopala-tapani-bhasya; commentaries on Sahitya-kaumudi (Krsnanandini), Chanda-kaustubha, Laghu-bhagavatamrta and Candra-loka; Natya-candrika; commentary on Srimad-Bhagavat (Vaisnava-anandini); Vedanta-syamantaka; Prameya-ratnavali; Gita-bhusana-bhasya; Visnu-sahasranama-bhasya (Namartha-sudha); Saìksepa-bhagavatamrta-tippani (Saranga-raìgada); Stava-mala-vibhusana-bhasya; Pada-kaustubha; and commentary on Sri Syamananda-sataka.