|NITAAI-Veda.nyf > All Scriptures By Acharyas > Bhaktivinoda Thakura > Navadvipa Dhaam Mahatmya > Pramana Khanda Only English > Chapter-II|
For the pleasure of intelligent people, I will first present what Lord Shiva described long ago to Parvati in the Ananta-sanhita.
Shri Parvati said, “Who is Krishna Chaitanya? What are His auspicious characteristics? What is the Ananta-sanhita? How and by whom was it revealed? I have heard you chant various names of Vishnu, but never the two names `Gauranga' and `Krishna Chaitanya.' O lord of my life, please tell me why you are loudly chanting these all-auspicious names. Also, please narrate that Sanhita which contains Lord Chaitanya's glorification.”
Shri Mahadeva said, “O Parvati, daughter of Himalaya, you are very fortunate. Lord Vishnu glorifies you as being equal to Shri Radha. You have surrendered both body and mind to Shri Krishna. Therefore, my beloved, you have the proper qualification for hearing about Shri Krishna Chaitanya, for only those who have devotion to Radha and Krishna are qualified to hear about Shri Chaitanya. Nondevotees are not qualified.
“O beloved, Krishna Chaitanya is the first amongst the gods, the Lord of all worlds from whom everything comes. He is the Paramatma, and everything merges in Him at the time of universal destruction. The knowers of the Vedas call Him Brahman, while some call Him the original learned person. Some persons call Him the sole Lord of the universe, and others see Him as the Supreme Person.
“Some call Him the fruit of work, and others know Him as the grandfather. Someone else knows Him as the Lord of sacrifice, and others as the omniscient Lord. O Maheshvari, the Supreme Person, Shri Krishna Himself, who is the life of Shri Radharani and Lord of the universe, appeared at the time of creation as Gaura. O gentle-faced Parvati, because He appeared at that time as pure consciousness, chaitanya, the wise call Him Krishna Chaitanya. The syllable `krishi' means `support' and `na' means `universe.' The wise understand that Krishna is the person who supports the universe.
“Previously you heard from me in detail about Krishna. Because He appeared at the beginning of the creation of the universe in a golden form, the Vaishnavas know Him as Gauranga. At that time, Prakritidevi, the mistress of the three modes and mother of the universe, was not present, so the mahat-tattva and the material elements were not yet manifest.
“Let me offer my obeisances unto the Supersoul, the cause of all causes, the Lord of lords, Gauranga, the form of eternity, knowledge, and bliss.
“O Parvati, one day the Lord known as Ananta, the king of snakes, went to Svetadvipa where Lord Vishnu, the protector of the three worlds, resides. The thousand-headed Ananta offered His respects to the all-powerful Vishnu and praised Him by reciting the Purusha-sukta. Then, with hands folded, He inquired from the Lord.
“Nagaraja said, `O Narayana, O ocean of mercy! You know everything, and You are affectionate to Your devotees. By Your mercy I support this earth. By Your mercy I have been able to see and understand all moving and nonmoving things. Now I wish to see the pastimes of Radha and Krishna. O husband of Lakshmi, by the mercy of Your lotus feet I have been able to go everywhere except Vrindavana. Now I desire to go to Mahavana, the best of dhamas. Please tell Me how I can go there.'
Shri Mahadeva continued, “Hearing Nagaraja speak, the Lord of Svetadvipa, Madhusudana, slightly smiled and spoke the following sweet words.
“The Supreme Lord said, `O greatly intelligent Nagaraja, how can You ask such a question? This is like desiring to cross the ocean by holding the tail of a dog. O upholder of the earth, what great austerities or pious activities have You done that You desire to see the beautiful abode of Radha and Krishna? Neither Brahma, the grandfather of the universe; nor Shiva; nor I Myself, the sustainer of the universe; nor Garbodakashayi Vishnu; nor Karanodakashayi Vishnu; nor Mayadevi, who bewilders everyone in the universe, can go to that spiritual abode of Krishna, Radha's Lord.
“`That place where the trees, leaves, flowers, and fruit are spiritual; where the swans, cuckoos, deer, and other animals are spiritual; where the ground, rivers, mountains, and lakes are spiritual–not born of gross material energy–that place is glorified by the great devotees as the best of places. It is called Goloka. Radha and Krishna perform Their pastimes there. Vrindavana is the dearmost abode of Krishna, whom all the devatas desire to see.
“`O Nagaraja, how have You come to desire to see this supreme abode, from one corner of which are born all places dear to the living entities such as Vaikuntha, and which the sages cannot see even in their dreams?
“`Long ago, Brahma performed austerities at Pushkara for a hundred years, hoping to get the dust from the lotus feet of Lord Krishna. But You–so unqualified, so unintelligent–how can You desire to see the supreme pastimes of Radha and Krishna?
“`But, O king of the snakes, I consider You the best of the devotees, because You have developed such a taste for the pastimes of Radha and Krishna. After ten million kalpas of performing pious deeds, the living entity becomes a Vaishnava. Thereafter he develops a taste for the pastimes of Radha and Krishna.
“`That person who develops the fine intelligence to perceive the pastimes of Radha and Krishna is a liberated soul, who is worshipable by all the demigods.
“`One cannot attain Radha and Krishna by hearing the glories of Vishnu for a billion kalpas. Radha and Krishna can be attained only by association with the gopis. And one cannot attain the association of the gopis except by taking shelter of the lotus feet of Gauranga. Therefore, please, constantly worship Gauranga with full devotion.
“`Devotees exclusively attracted to the lotus feet of Gauranga, like bees attracted to nectar, certainly attain Radha and Krishna. If You desire the goal of devotion–servitorship to Radha and Krishna in Vrindavana, which is so rare in this world–then go quickly to Navadvipa and worship Gauranga, the ocean of mercy. At present, Krishna, the dearmost of Radha, is residing there in the form of Gauranga.
“`In order to bestow the mood of the gopis, Krishna, the son of Nanda, has appeared in a two-armed golden form, with hands extending to the knees, and with pleasing eyes and face. In the dress of a devotee, He chants His own auspicious name in a loud voice and sometimes He chants `gopi, gopi, gopi.'
“`Sometimes He will hold a danda and waterpot, and sometimes He will be overcome with the sentiments of mahabhava for bestowing realization to the souls of this world. By worshiping with great devotion this form of Gauranga, the great mountain of mercy, You will obtain Radha and Krishna in Vrindavana.'”
Mahadeva continued, “Receiving the instruction of the Lord, Ananta went to Navadvipa to meet Gauranga.”
Thus ends the Second Chapter of the Second part of the Shri Chaitanya Janma-khanda of the Ananta-sanhita.
Parvati said, “Please tell me, O Lord, O ocean of mercy, O great yogi, where is this Navadvipa in which Gauranga resides? What did Ananta do when He went there? The name of Gauranga has forcibly stolen my mind. You have already told me the glories of Vrindavana. Now, Lord, tell me the glories of Navadvipa.”
Hearing Parvati's words, Lord Shiva embraced her and with great respect said, “O Gauri, please listen as I describe the glories of Navadvipa, which bestow prema-bhakti on mankind and destroy all types of sins. I describe truly the glories of Navadvipa just as I have described the glories of Vrindavana.
“The Lord, who gives bliss to His devotees, performs His pastimes in Navadvipa just as Krishna enjoys pastimes with Radha in Vrindavana. Just by remembrance of glorious Navadvipa, an island situated within the combined Ganges and Yamuna Rivers, one will develop attraction for Radha and Krishna.
“A person may wander about the earth and visit a thousand holy tirthas, but if one does not see Navadvipa, he cannot obtain Radha and Krishna. O Parvati, in just one portion of Navadvipa all the sacred places, sages, munis, demigods, ashramas, Vedas, scriptures, and mantras constantly reside for the pleasure of Radha and Krishna. Whatever results a person can attain by performance of thousands of horse sacrifices, thousands of vajapeya sacrifices, various types of rituals and yoga exercises, can be attained ten million times over just by remembering Navadvipa. What can I say then of the results of actually seeing Navadvipa?
“O Parvati, if even the most sinful people remember Navadvipa just once, they become devotees. Know this for certain. Day by day their devotion will increase. The earth becomes purified by the dust from their lotus feet.
“Those who live in Navadvipa and accept Gauranga as their only worshipable Lord should not be thought of as ordinary mortals. They are personal associates of Gauranga. Just by remembering those devotees the most sinful persons become purified. And what to speak of seeing them!
“If Ananta with His thousands of mouths is unable to describe the glories of Navadvipa, how will I be able to do so with my five mouths? O Parvati, the wise men know that Navadvipa is the only means by which to ascend to Vrindavana.
“Ananta went to Navadvipa, performed penances, and worshiped Gauranga for ten thousands years. Being pleased with Ananta, Lord Gauranga appeared before Him. On seeing that form, Ananta fell to the ground offering His respects.
“Then, raising Himself, Ananta folded His hands and began to sing the glories of Gauranga, who appeared with a complexion of molten gold. Gauranga's lotus feet were very beautiful, His toenails glowed like ten million moons, His form glowed like a thousand suns, and He was decorated with a forest flower garland and the mark of Shrivatsa on His chest. Wearing silk cloth, He was as attractive as ten million Cupids. His arms extending to His knees and a sacred thread draped across His chest. He was smeared with sandalwood pulp and decorated with arm bands and tulasi beads around His neck. He had graceful eyes and beautiful eyebrows and nose. He was slightly smiling, and His ears were decorated with shark earrings. He was peaceful, and His feet are eternally worshiped by the devotees. He is the deliverer of the suffering living entities and the cause of the universes. His form is full of eternity, knowledge, and bliss. With a choked voice, Ananta offered His prayers.
“Ananta said, `O Lord, You are the origin of everything, the only cause of the universe. You are the independent, merciful, eternal person. As fire gives birth to sparks, You give birth to all living entities who take bodies of demigods and humans.
“`O omniscient Lord, since Your eternal energy cannot give rise to Me without Your wish, I surrender unto You in Your eternal form. O destroyer of the miseries of material life, O Paramatma! Those who give up the all-auspicious, blissful service of Your lotus feet and instead labor constantly for speculative knowledge engage in useless activity.
“`O lotus-eyed Lord, those who give up Your service with the aim of merging with You by yoga practice cannot actually be considered to be amongst the intelligent persons on this earth, being cheated of the bliss of serving You.
“`Therefore, O friend of the miserable, please engage Me in Your service. I have no other desire at Your lotus feet.
“`O savior of the earth, for those whose minds are satisfied by the nectar of service to Your lotus feet, anything on this earth is easily obtainable.
“`O best of the godly, today I am more fortunate than the mental speculators, because I have seen Your form, which is transcendental to the material world. O Lord, I offer My respects to You, whose form is full of eternity, knowledge, and bliss, whose complexion is like molten gold, and whose lotus feet are easily attained by the devotees.
“`O merciful Gauranga, I wish to see You once again in the future, in the form which enjoys pastimes in Vrindavana.'
“The Lord said, `O Ananta, I am satisfied with Your service because You are the first amongst the best devotees. For this reason, when I appear in Navadvipa You will appear as My best servant.
“`O fortunate one, Navadvipa is equal to Vrindavana. Long ago it was created by Radha to bestow mercy on the living entities. Vrindavana and Navadvipa are as dear to Me as Radha Herself. This I testify is the truth. O Ananta, as I always reside in Vrindavana with Radhika, so I always reside in Navadvipa combined with Radhika in one form as Gauranga. Just as I never leave Vrindavana, I never leave Navadvipa. I appear in Vrindavana during every kalpa, and I perform pastimes for the pleasure of the devotees and to purify the world. O Ananta, please describe those same pastimes as they occur in Navadvipa.
“`O fortunate one, when I appear in person for the benefit of the populace, You will also appear. I do not tolerate separation from You even for a moment. Therefore, in another age I take You as My elder brother in Vrindavana.
“`I will appear in Navadvipa, the great holy place, in the house of a brahmana. Being prayed for by the devas, I will kill the fear generated by the advent of Kali-yuga. At that time, appearing as the large-bodied Nityananda, You will be absorbed in kirtana pastimes and transform the bewildered faithless into My devotees. You will convert the living entities into the best of devotees by gathering the essence of My eternal pastimes and composing an attractive sanhita approved by the great devotees.'”
Lord Shiva said, “O Parvati, being ordered by the Lord in this way, Ananta offered His obeisances to the Lord and then composed this great sanhita which gives prema-bhakti. When Ananta offered this sanhita at the lotus feet of the Lord, He felt great satisfaction. Since this work was full of the Lord's infinite (ananta) pastimes, and since it came from the mouth of Ananta, the Lord called this work, Ananta-sanhita.
“My dear Parvati, one time in Vaikuntha the Lord gave this sanhita to Brahma for the benefit of all the worlds, and later, in another kalpa, He mercifully gave it to me when I was overcome from drinking poison. As my mouth was burning with the poison, I took this nectarean sanhita in my mouth. O Parvati, since that time I have been constantly reciting this sanhita along with the auspicious mantra of Gauranga's name. Being purified by this, I am considered the best of devotees. I am now satisfied, having been freed from the sinful reactions due to creating the atheistic Mayavada scriptures which criticize Krishna.
“O Parvati, because you are my beloved, in a previous kalpa I gave this sanhita to you, but because of your being a woman, or because of your predominance of speculative knowledge, you could not remember it. Described in this sanhita are the attractive pastimes of Krishna and the character of Gauranga, which bestows direct meeting of Radha and Krishna.
“O Parvati, by hearing, reading, or teaching this scripture, a person can attain direct service to Lord Gauranga, who is merciful to the devotees and whose form is eternal and full of knowledge and bliss. Such a person resides in Navadvipa for many kalpas. Then, by Gauranga's mercy, that person becomes a gopi and resides with Radha and Krishna in the groves of Vrindavana as an attendant (sakhi). This is without a doubt the truth.
“O Sati, without service to the lotus feet of Gauranga, a person cannot obtain Radha and Krishna, even after accumulating lifetimes of pious activities. Therefore Parvati, you should constantly hear about the character of Lord Gauranga.”
Shri Narada said, “O Gautama, being again questioned by Parvati, the merciful Lord Shiva began to describe in a loud voice the character of Gauranga.”
Thus ends the Third Chapter of the Second part of the Shri Chaitanya Janma-khanda of the Ananta-sanhita.
Gautama said, “O best of the munis, please be merciful and tell me what Parvati then asked Lord Shiva.”
Shri Narada said, “After hearing the glories of Navadvipa and wanting to know the cause of its appearance, Parvatidevi inquired from Lord Shiva.”
Parvati said, “O Lord, please describe exactly how and when Shrimati Radhika created Navadvipa.”
Lord Shiva replied, “O Parvati, please hear the reason for Navadvipa's appearance, as described in the Ananta-sanhita and as I have heard from the mouth of Lord Narayana.
“As a bee plays in a lotus, Krishna was enjoying with Viraja in the pleasant forest groves of Vrindavana. Moon-faced, doe-eyed Radhika heard this news from one sakhi and hastily ran to find Krishna. Seeing that Radha was coming, Krishna suddenly disappeared, and Viraja became a river. Radha again heard that Krishna was enjoying with Viraja, but when She arrived there She could not find them. Absorbed in thoughts of Krishna, Radha began to think.
“She gathered Her sakhis together between the Ganges and Yamuna Rivers. She created there a beautiful place, decorated with creepers and trees and filled with male and female bumble bees. Deer and buck were happily enjoying as they wandered about, and the whole area was filled with the fragrance of jasmine, mallika, and malati flowers. That transcendental abode was adorned with tulasi forests and decorated with various groves. On Radha's order, the Ganges and Yamuna, with their pleasant water and banks, acted as a moat to protect the garden. Cupid himself, along with springtime, eternally reside there, and the birds constantly sing the auspicious name of Krishna.
“Radha, dressed in a colorful cloth, then began to play a beautiful melody on a flute in order to attract Krishna. Attracted by that melody, Krishna appeared in that enchanting place. Radha, the attractor of Krishna's mind, seeing that Krishna had come, held His hand and experienced ecstatic delight. Then Krishna, understanding Radha's mood, spoke in a voice choked with love.
“`O lovely-faced Radha, You are My very life. There is no one more dear to Me than You. Therefore I will never leave You. Just for Me You have created this wonderful place. Staying with You, I will transform this place, filling it with new sakhis and groves. The devotees will glorify this place as New Vrindavana (Nava Vrindavana). As this place is like an island, or dvipa, the wise will call it Navadvipa. By My order, all the holy places will reside here. Because You have created this place for My pleasure, I will live here eternally.
“`Those people who come here and worship Us will certainly obtain Our eternal service in the mood of the sakhis. O dear Radha, like Vrindavana, this place is extremely pure. If anyone comes here just once, he will obtain the results of going to all sacred places. He will quickly attain devotional service, which satisfies Us.'”
Lord Shiva continued, “O most fortunate Parvati, saying this, Krishna, the Lord of Radha, merged with Radha's body and began to reside there eternally. Seeing that sat-cit-ananda form—outwardly of a fair complexion but inwardly Krishna Himself—Lalita gave up her beautiful form for the service of Gauranga. She took on a male form to suitably receive the affection of Gauranga. Seeing that Lalita had taken such a form, Vishakha and all the other sakhis also suddenly took on male forms.
“At that time the tumultuous vibration of `Jaya Gaurahari!' filled the four directions. From that time the devotees call this form of Krishna, Gaurahari. As Radha is Gauri (fair) and Krishna is Hari, when They combine in one form, They are called Gaurahari. Since then, the lotus-eyed, flute-playing, threefold bending form of Krishna and the lotus-eyed form of Radhikadevi remained there combined in one form.
“O Parvati, in blissful Vrindavana, Radha stays by the left side of Krishna and always pleases Him. Similarly, in Navadvipa Krishna takes Radharani in His heart and bestows bliss upon Her. Just as in Vrindavana the sakhis headed by Lalita serve Radha and Krishna in their own forms, in Navadvipa also the sakhis always joyfully serve Gaurahari as His devotees. Radha and Krishna are Gaura, and Vrindavana is Navadvipa. That low person who differentiates between Vrindavana and Navadvipa or between Radha-Krishna and Gauranga will be pierced by my arrows and experience pain in the worst hells until the time of the universal devastation.
“O Parvati, I have described to you the reason for the appearance of Navadvipa. When heard by mankind, this narration removes all sins and bestows devotional service. Whoever rises early in the morning and with devotion to Gaura recites or hears this story of Navadvipa's creation will certainly attain Gauranga.
“Even now the devotees, but not the faithless, can see the sat-cid-ananda form of Lord Gauranga in Navadvipa. Previously, in the rasa dance at Vrindavana, I saw Krishna, the Lord of the rasa dance and attractor of Cupid, appear as Gauranga. That same Lord, Krishna Chaitanya, appears in Navadvipa in every kalpa and gives pure devotional service to the living entities.
“O Parvati, these secret topics that I have told you should never be revealed to the foolish nondevotees. Give it to the pure-minded devotee. Please tell me now, what else do you wish to hear?”
Thus ends the Fourth Chapter of the Second part of the Shri Chaitanya Janma-khanda of the Ananta-sanhita.
In the Urddhvamnaya-sanhita, the Lord says, “O Brahma, during the reign of Vaivasvata Manu, I will take a golden form on the bank of the Ganges and, giving out the name of Hari, I will deliver hundreds and thousands of brahmanas, kshatriyas, vaishyas, candalas, and other low class men. I will go to Kancana-grama11 and take sannyasa.”
Thus ends the Second Chapter of the Navadvipa-dhama-mahatmya, Pramana-khanda.