Lord Gauranga's Lila
.Sri Gaura Purnima
Catch the Moon
In this way a blissful day turned into a full moon night. After engaging the servants in their evening duties, Sacidevi took Nimai into the courtyard for some fresh air. The full moon was climbing the sky. Acting like an innocent boy, the clever Nimai cried, "Mother! Mother!"
Sacidevi said, "Donít cry. I will give You whatever You want." The Lord replied, "Mother, please give Me the moon." Saci said, "Can anyone catch the moon in the sky?"
Nimai said, "Then why did you say that you would give Me whatever I wanted? For this reason, I asked for the moon."
Then Nimai began wailing. Holding the comer of Sacidevi's sari, He kept crying while rubbing His eyes with His free hand and kicking the dirt with His feet. Nimai was insistent; He wanted the moon. Gaura Raya clutched His mother's sari and yanked her hair. The next moment He hit her in the head with His hand. Still unsuccessful, He rolled on the ground and cried.
Sacimata said, "O Nimai, You are incorrigible and Your behavior is most unusual. How can I possibly catch the moon in the sky? There are already so many moons on Your body. Look how the moon has become ashamed before You. Out of shyness, he is now hiding himself behind the clouds. O my son, please listen."
Then Sacimata placed Nimai on her lap and showered Him with kisses. Obsessed with parental love, Sacidevi forgot herself in transcendental bliss. Her voice became choked up in ecstasy. Locana Dasa joyfully sings the glories of Lord Gauranga.
"Intense feelings of spiritual rapture"
Sri Caitanya Mangala
Standing behind the Garuda stambha, Lord Caitanya gazed at the beautiful moonlike face of Lord Jagannatha with unblinking eyes. Intense feelings of spiritual rapture seized Gauranga's body. As a result, His bodily hairs stood up straight, appearing like the stiffened filaments of a golden kadamba flower. Tears flowed in five or seven streams from His lotus eyes.
Losing Himself in the bliss of pure Krishna consciousness, Sri Gaura Raya became stunned and collapsed on the ground unconscious. It appeared like the peak of a mountain breaking off due to high wind. His eyes were closed and His fists were tightly clenched.
Soon Lord Caitanya returned to external consciousness. Dancing and chanting, "Hari! Hari!" He entered the temple with the other devotees: Srivasa, Damodara, Murari and Mukunda. They sang the glories of Radha and Krishna and danced exuberantly.
Gauranga's Pastimes with Sarvabhauma
Then Gaurasundara and His loving associates returned to the home of Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya. Again Lord Caitanya fell into a trance of divine euphoria and performed sankirtana. Observing the blissful activities of the Lord filled Sarvabhauama's heart with wonder and pleasure. When Gaura-nataraja stopped dancing, Sarvabhauma sent a man to bring Lord Jagannatha's rnaha-prasada. Meanwhile, they discussed philosophy.
Vasudeva Sarvabhauma said, "Mahaprabhu, please tell mc Your birthplace."
Gauranga said, "Whatever you say, that is true."
Sarvabhauma, "Why are You answering me like this? I say one thing and then You say something else."
Gauranga kept silent, as grave as the ocean.
Sarvabhauma, "Will You please tell me how You became a sannyasi?"
Gauranga, "Definitely, know this is truth."
Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya was totally bewildered by Mahaprabhu's equivocal statements. He couldn't understand anything about Lord Caitanya, who is the beloved Lord of millions of Sarasvatis [goddesses of knowledge]. Not knowing whether Gauranga was God Himself or just a madman, Sarvabhauma became upset.
Gauranga Glorifies Jagannatha Maha-prasada
At that time a huge quantity of Jagannatha maha-prasada arrived. Thrilled to see it, Mahaprabhu bowed His head to offer respects and then roared like a lion, filling the universe with the sound. The demigods, Gandharvas, human beings, dogs, and snakes came to receive prasada from Gauranga's hand.
Everyone felt ecstatic by taking Lord Jagannatha's maha-prasada. Although Gadadhara, Nityananda, and other devotees saw this, they kept quiet because they know everything. Then Mahaprabhu honored Lord Jagannatha's remnants.
Srivasa said, "Mahaprabhu, I'm a little afraid to ask, but if You permit, then I'll ask a question. After You took rnaha-prasada I saw that You were smiling blissfully. Can You tell us what You were smiling about?"
Hearing this, the Lord became joyful and revealed His heart. "Due to the promise of Katyayani, even the animals are receiving maha prasada. But even after great endeavor, demigods such as Indra, Candra and the Gandharvas can't obtain it. Devotees like Narada, Sukadeva, Prahlada and others rarely get to taste this maha prasada. Now everyone is relishing such rnaha prasada"
"Anyone who rejects maha prasada, considering it to be ordinary food, will lose his piety and take birth as a pig. One should accept maha prasada and eat it immediately without consideration, even if it has fallen from the mouth of a dog. There is never any defect in maha prasada."
Next, Mahaprabhu honored some maha prasada. In the evening He took darsana of Lord Jagannatha. With His full-blooming lotus eyes and complexion the color of a monsoon cloud, Lord Jagannatha's face was most charming to behold. The whole universe could not contain the ecstasy that Lord Caitanya felt upon seeing Lord Jagannatha.
The intensity of His Krishna-prema made Gauranga tumble to the ground. It appeared as if the golden Mt. Sumeru was rolling on the ground. The dazzling effulgence of Gauranga's body made Lord Jagannatha also appear golden. Lord Balarama and the temple priests also became absorbed in Gauranga's ecstatic mood. Seeing this, all the devotees floated in an ocean of bliss.
The temple priest worshiped Lord Caitanya, whom he saw as Lord Jagannatha now moving in the form of a sannyasi. No one had ever seen such an amazing sight. Surfacing from the deep ocean of prema, Lord Caitanya went back to Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya's house. In this way Lord Gauranga tasted boundless happiness in taking Lord Jagannatha's darsana three times a day. He also passed the days and nights discussing Radha-Krishna prema-tattva with His intimate followers.
Teaching Vedanta and Sad-Bhuja Revealed
Now listen carefully to a pastime that was first revealed in Purusottama-ksetra [Jagannatha Purl]. Lord Caitanya lived humbly, without any material possessions to teach renunciation to the people in general. Foolish people thought that the Lord was an ordinary man. Gauranga would sing His own glories in association with His dearmost devotees.
Sarvabhauma, who was proud of his mundane scholarship, once said something incorrect about Lord Sri Caitanya to an assembly of brahmanas and saintly persons. He said, "Although Sri Caitanya is a scholar hailing from a good family, He has taken sannyasa at such a young age. With incomplete knowledge this brahmana has taken such a serious step.
"Now He should rectify Himself and deeply study Vedanta. It's not the dharma of a sannyasi to chant and dance wildly in the streets. Better He should study Vedanta from me and go back to family life."
Suddenly Gauranga appeared within that assembly. His face was adorned with a sweet smile appearing like a constant flow of honey. Startled, Sarvabhauma got up immediately to receive Lord Caitanya. He praised the Lord and offered a seat.
Sri Gauranga Mahaprabhu said, "I don't know all the rules. But you, Sarvabhauma, being a great scholar, know everything. Please tell Me the rules and regulations.
"Although I don't understand the duties of a sannyasi, Providence has arranged that I am one. Now, please explain the proper rules and conduct of a sannyasi. You know and teach Vedanta, so now please instruct Me. It's said that one shouldn't take sannyasa at the prime of life. What is the scriptural rule about taking diksa?"
Sarvabhauma, being surprised by Lord Caitanya's frankness, felt shy and hesitant to reply. He thought, "How did this sannyasi know that I was talking about Him with my followers?"
The next day Gauranga and His followers returned to Sarvabhauma's house. Lord Caitanya wanted to learn the confidential conclusion of the Vedanta on taking shelter of the nectarean lotus feet of Sri Krishna. Heating this shocked Sarvabhauma, who then realized that the darling of Sacimata was no ordinary human being.
Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya thought, "I have never heard such an explanation of Vedanta. I've become very proud after spending my whole life studying and teaching Vedanta. But upon hearing Sri Caitanya's presentation of it, I understand that He is favored by Sarasvati, the goddess of learning."
Then Sarvabhauma, the best of the brahmanas, folded his hands and offered prayers to Gauranga. Astonishing everyone, Lord Caitanya manifested a six-handed form, [sad-bhuja]. Sarvabhauma became full of ecstasy when he saw this transcendental form of the Lord. In one place, at one time, and from one body, Lord Caitanya showed a six armed form.
In two raised arms the Lord held a bow and arrow. He held a flute to His lips with two other hands. In the two arms hanging by His sides, He clutched a sannyasa danda and waterpot. Entranced in the ecstasy of Krishna consciousness, Sarvabhauma fell at Gauranga's feet, crying. Then just before hinting, Sarvabhauma, in a faltering voice, offered Lord Gauranga a prayer called Caitanya-sahasranama--the thousand names of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.
Thus Locana Dasa describes the manifestation of sad-bhuja to Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya in Jagannatha Puri.
In this way, Sri Krishna Caitanya happily lived in Nilacala. Everyday the devotees came to visit Lord Gauranga. The daily darsana of Lord Jagannatha filled everyone' s heart with the joy of Krishna consciousness.
The Puppy Story
Gauranga used to pass His time playing and enjoying many frivolous games with His friends. One day they found a litter of puppies. Nimai picked out the nicest one.
Nimai's friend said, "Look Nimai, You chose the best puppy and left the ugly ones for us. It's not fair. If You keep that one, then we're going home."
Visvambhara said, "Come on. Listen, I'll keep this puppy in My house and we can all play with him there."
Nimai took the puppy home and tied it to a chain. Having just finished her duties, Sacimata had gone to bathe in the Ganges along with her friends. Visvambhara's friends came into the house and played with the puppy dog. They fondled the dog, rolled in the dirt with it, and laughed and joked.
Suddenly, a quarrel broke out among the boys. Nimai took the side of one boy and found fault with the other. Gaurahari said, "Listen, everyday you come here to play and you always start a fight. Why do you behave like this?"
In defense, the boy said, "Well, You stole the puppy!" Then he stormed out of the house.
Seeing Sacimata returning from the Ganges, that boy said in a voice choked with anger, "Your son Visvambhara is playing in the house with a puppy dog. Sometimes He puts it on His lap, or hangs it over His shoulder. Go and see for yourself." Sacimata quickly entered the house and saw Visvambhara playing with-the puppy. In astonishment, she hit her forehead with her palm. "Visvambhara! What are You doing?" said Sacimata. "I simply can't understand Your behavior. You have so many things to play with, but instead You play with a dog.
"You are the son of a very religious father. What will people say if they see You playing with a dog? This behavior does not befit a brahmana's son. It pains my heart to imagine how people will criticize You if they find out.
"Your form is so pure and wonderful. Why do You find happiness in smearing Your body with dirt? Seeing You like this, I bow my head in shame and wish to die. Your body shines like fresh lightning, and Your face is more beautiful than many moons. Yet, instead of wearing Your clothes, You cover Your body with dirt and play with low-class boys."
Fuming with anger, Sacimata bit her lower lip and rebuked her errant son. "Okay Nimai, if You like that puppy so much, then take him to Your room. Just forget about Your mother and father and play with Your dog!"
But the charming beauty of Gaura's gorgeous and innocent face quickly dissipated Sacimata's anger. Adopting a joyful mood, Sacidevi said, "Come my darling son, get on my lap. I want to hug You and kiss Your sweet smiling face. Now, just leave that puppy alone for a little while, and go bathe in the Ganges.
"Besides, You must be hungry. It's already lunchtime. Why are You filling me with anxiety? Now tie up Your puppy, take bath, and after lunch You can play with him again. Your face looks tired like a golden lotus withered by the scorching sun. A drop of perspiration, like a pearl, rests on the tip of Your nose."
Smiling, Visvambhara said, "Mother, please watch My puppy while I take a bath." After cleansing the dirt from Nimai's body, Sacimata rubbed Him with fragrant oil. Gaurahari and His friends went to bathe in the Ganges. They laughed, swam about, and threw water on each other just like playful elephants do when bathing. Gauranga's golden body appeared powerfully built and as immovable as Mt. Sumeru.
Meanwhile back home, Sacimata untied Nimai's puppy and sent him away. One of Gauranga's playmates saw this, and then ran to the Ganges to inform Nimai. "Hey Nimai, Your mother sent Your puppy away!"
Nimai immediately ran home. Not seeing His puppy, Nimai's heart burned' in anger. Feeling separation, He cried and scolded His mother. "Listen mother, you don't understand. Why did you do this to Me? I feel very hurt. He was such a nice beautiful puppy. How could you send him away?
Playing innocent, Sacimata said, "I don't know what happened to Your puppy. He was just here. Maybe a thief has stolen him. Now stop crying. We'll search for the puppy and bring him back tomorrow. I promise I'll find Your puppy. Now please stop crying."
After saying this, Sacimata wiped the tears from Nimai's face, put Him on her lap, and smothered Him with kisses. Then Sacimata pacified Nimai with khira, sandesh, bananas, and other tasty sweets.
Sacimata dressed her darling son. She tied His hair in a topknot and applied black kajjala around His eyes. She wrapped a ruby-red cloth around Nimai's nicely curved hips. She hung a pearl necklace around His neck. Sandalwood tilaka adorned His forehead. Gold bangles highlighted the beauty of His wrists and ankles.
Grabbing a sweetball, Nimai ran outside to play with His friends. His walking defeated the pride of the king of elephants. His deep voice sounded as sweet as nectar. Nimai, the crest jewel among His brahmana friends, looked like the full moon surrounded by a cluster of stars. The demigods felt great happiness to witness Lord Gaura's transcendental pastimes. Locana Dasa is amazed to see that the Supreme Lord touched cats and dogs.
That puppy dog attained the greatest fortune by the transcendental touch of Lord Gauranga. The dog gave up his bad habits and became Krishna conscious. One day the dog just started dancing ecstatically while chanting the holy names, "Radha-Krishna! Govinda!"
Hearing that a lowly dog was chanting Hare Krishna, the townspeople of Navadvipa ran to see the miracle. Before everyone's eyes, the dog exhibited the bodily symptoms of ecstatic love of God. The dog was crying, his hair stood on end, and his entire body was covered with goose bumps. Suddenly, that most fortunate dog gave up his body.
At that moment, a golden celestial chariot came down from the sky, and carried the dog to Goloka Vrndavana. Topped with many domes, the chariot was lavishly decorated with pearls and dazzling jewels. The sound of bells, gongs, conchshells, and karatalas accompanied the divine singing of Gandharvas and Kinnaras, who were singing the glories of Radha and Krishna.
Flags flapped atop the chariot whose brilliance outshone the light of the sun. In his spiritual body, the dog was sitting upon a jeweled throne inside the chariot. His body, adorned with divine ornaments, looked more beautiful than millions of moons. The former dog was singing the glories of Radha, Krishna, and Gauranga. The Siddhas fanned him with camaras as he soared back to Goloka.
Lord Brahma, Siva, Sanaka, and other demigods surrounded the chariot and sang Gauranga's praises. "All glories, all glories to the ocean of mercy, the darling of Sacimata. Never before has He bestowed such mercy. He liberated a dog and sent him back to Goloka'
The demigods continued, "All glories to Gaurahari, the resort of the helpless. You are the best of all incarnations. By Your mercy, the people of the age of Kali will attain salvation. What wonderful pastimes will You reveal in the future?
"When will we demigods become fortunate and receive Your supreme mercy? Simply by Your touch, a dog attained liberation. We've never seen such mercy, even in the pastimes of Lord Hrsikesa, Krishna. We hanker for Your mercy, so we too can attain the same destination as that dog.
"O Gaura Raya, we bow down to Your wonderfully glorious lotus feet. You always overlook one's faults and offenses. In this way, any fortunate living entity who takes shelter of You, Lord Gauranga, will attain Goloka."
Repeatedly singing these glorious transcendental pastimes, I, Locana Dasa, continually marvel at the divine incarnation known as Lord Gauracandra.
Notes on Locana Dasa-
Locana Dasa was born in 1520 A.D. in Kograma within Gauramandala, West Bengal. He was a disciple of Sri Narahari Sarakara Thakura, an intimate eternal associate of Sri Caltanya Mahaprabhu. One day in 1537 A.D., following his guru's order, Locana Dasa sat on a stone slab under a badari tree and started writing the Caitanya-Mangala on a piece of bark. Since Vrndavana Dasa Thakura had already written a book entitled Caitanya-Mangala, the leading devotees in Vrndavana [Sri Raghunatha Dasa Gosvami, Sri Jiva Gosvami, Kasisvara Pandita, Pandita Haridasa Gosvami, and Anantacarya] met to resolve the problem. They decided that henceforth Vrndavana Dasa's book would be called Caitanya Bhagavata, and Locana Dasa Thakura's book would remain as Caitanya-Mangala.
In Vaisnava Abhidana, Haridasa Dasa [a famous Gaudiya Vaisnava historian] describes Caitanya-Mangala, "Locana Dasa based his Caitanya-Mangala on Murari Gupta's authorized Sanskrit biography of Lord Caitanya entitled Sri-Krishna-Caitanya-carita.
Caitanya-Mangala is written in simple, beautiful language, and it can be sung in various beautiful ragas.
"Caitanya-Mangala is a rasatmaka-sastra [book full of rasa], and Caitanya Bhagavata is a varnanatmaka-sastra [a book full of descriptions]. In some cases, Locana Dasa's poetic expression surpasses
that of Vrndavana Dasa Thakura.
The members of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness should go to India during the birthday ceremony of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu at Mayapur and perform sankirtana congregationally. This will attract the attention of all the important personalities in India, just as the beauty, bodily luster and sankirtana performance by the associates of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu attracted the attention of Maharaja Prataparudra.> NAM 5.1: The Krsna Consciousness Movement and the Holy Name
So there is no cause of disappointment, but this is, today is, very important day, Lord Caitanya's birthday ceremony. At least in India, specially in
Nabadwip, there is very, very great ceremony today. Thousands and millions of people are gathering to observe this important ceremony. So ceremony, apart from ceremonial function, let us try to understand the philosophy of Lord Caitanya.
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