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Hankering for Divine Service
- Thirteen Songs -
prapance podiya, agati hoiya,
na dekhi upaya ar
agatira gati, carane sharana,
tomaya korinu sar
1) O my Lord Hari! Having fallen into the illusion of this world, thus rendered helpless, I see no other means of deliverance but You. Since You are the only recourse for the helpless, I accept the shelter of Your lotus feet as most essential.
karama geyana, kichu nahi mora,
sadhana bhajana nai
tumi kripa-moya, ami to’ kangala,
ahaituki kripa cai
2) I have no background of pious activities, nor any knowledge, nor any regulated devotional practice. But You are full of compassion and kindness; therefore I, being indeed destitute, solicit Your causeless mercy.
miliya e saba, samsare bhasa’ye,
3) The powerful urges of speech, mind, anger, tongue, belly, and genitals have banded together to cast me adrift on the sea of this material world, thus causing me grievous trouble.xiii*
aneka jatane, se saba damane,
chadiyachi asha ami
anathera natha! daki tava nama,
ekhona bharasa tumi
4) After numerous endeavors to subdue these material demands, I have completely given up all hope. O Lord of the destitute! I call upon Your holy name, for now You are my only hope.xiv*
arthera sancaye, vishaya-prayase,
ano-adhikara, niyama agrahe,
1) O my Lord Hari! I have become absorbed in accumulating wealth and endeavoring for material possessions. I am addicted to idle conversations on topics apart from You. I mistakenly accept duties apart from my own qualifications, and am always eager to adhere to the letter of the law. This is the consequence of associating with worldly men.xv*
asthira siddhante, rohinu mojiya,
hari-bhakti roilo dure
e hridoye matro, para-himsa, mada,
pratishtha, shathata sphure
2) I remain deeply absorbed in the quicksand of ever-changing, uncertain opinions. Therefore, devotion to You has remained distant from me. In this heart of mine dwells only envy and malice towards others, false pride, the desire for fame and honor, and deceitfulness.
e saba agraha, chadite narinu,
apana doshate mari
janama biphala, hoilo amara,
ekhona ki kori, hari!
3) I have not been able to give up any of these inclinations. Thus my own faults have been my downfall. My birth as a human being has been totally wasted. O Lord Hari, what am I to do now?
ami to’ patita, patita-pavana,
tomara pavitra nama
se sambandha dhori’, tomara carane,
sharana loinu hama
4) I am indeed fallen (patita); but Your pure holy name is Patita-pavana—the savior of the fallen. Clinging to our relationship as implied by that holy name, I have taken shelter of Your lotus feet.
bhajane utsaha, bhaktite vishvasa,
1) O my Lord Hari! Enthusiasm in devotional service, faith in the process of devotional service, the treasure of patience in the attainment of love of God, performing activities favorable to pure devotion, abandoning the company of worldly people...
bhakti-sadacara, ei chaya guna,
nahilo amara natha!
kemone bhojibo, tomara carana,
chadiya mayara satha
2) ...performing approved devotional practices—I have never possessed these six devotional qualities, O Lord. How, then, shall I give up my affinity for Maya and worship Your lotus feet?xvi*
garhita acare, rohilama moji’,
na korinu sadhu-sanga
lo’ye sadhu-vesha, ane upadeshi,
e bodo mayara ranga
3) Remaining absorbed in abominable activities, I never kept company with sadhus. Now I adopt the garb of a sadhu and act out the role of instructing others. This is Maya’s big joke.
e heno dashaya, ahaituki kripa,
tomara paibo, hari!
shri-guru-ashroye, dakibo tomaya,
kabe va minati kori’
4) O Lord Hari, in such a helpless condition surely I will receive Your causeless mercy. O when, under the shelter of my spiritual master, will I call out to You with my humble entreaty?
dana, pratigraha, mitho gupta-katha,
sangera lakshana, ei chaya hoya,
ihate bhaktira prana
1) O my Lord Hari! Offering and receiving gifts, giving and receiving spiritual food, revealing one’s thoughts, and making confidential inquiries—these are the six characteristics of loving association, and in them is found the very life of devotion.xvii*
tattva na bujhiye, jnane va ajnane,
asate e saba kori’
bhakti harainu, samsari hoinu,
sudure rohile hari
2) I have failed to understand the truth, and by practicing these six activities with non-devotees, either knowingly or unknowingly, I lost all devotional inclination and have become a materialist. Consequently You, O Lord, still remain far away.
krishna-bhakta-jane, ei sanga-lakshane,
adara koribo jabe
bhakti-maha-devi, amara hridoya-
asane bosibe tabe
3) The day I cherish these activities of intimate association with the devotees of Shri Krishna, that very day the high goddess of devotion will take her seat upon the throne of my heart.
yoshit-sangi-jana, krishnaabhakta ara,
tava bhakta-jana- sanga anukshana,
kabe va hoibe hari!
4) When will I give up the company of those who are addicted to the company of materialistic women and those who are averse to You? And when will I cultivate the constant association of Your devotees, O Lord?
jadi tava nama ga’ya
manase adara, koribo tahare,
jani’ nija-jana taya
1) O my Lord Hari! Within my mind I will honor and consider as my own relative one who naturally avoids the offense of bad association and sings Your holy name, be he formally initiated or not.xviii*
dikshita hoiya, bhaje tuwa pada,
tahare pranati kori
ananya-bhajane, vijna yei jana,
tahare sevibo, hari!
2) I offer obeisances to that devotee who is initiated and worships Your lotus feet, and I will faithfully serve, O Hari, a devotee who is fixed in unalloyed devotion to You.
sarva-bhute sama, ye bhaktera mati,
tahara darshane mani
apanake dhanya, se sanga paiya,
caritartha hoilun jani
3) I consider myself greatly fortunate to even see that devotee who regards all living beings equally. Obtaining his association I consider myself fortunate, for I know that I have become successful in life.
nishkapata-mati, vaishnavera prati,
ei dharma kabe pa’bo
kabe samsara- sindhu-para ho’ye,
tava braja-pure ja’bo
4) When will my attitude toward the Vaishnavas become simple and innocent? And when will I cross over this ocean of worldly existence and reach Your transcendental abode of Vraja?
panka-phena drishta hoya
tathapi kakhona, brahma-drava-dharma,
se salila na chadoya
1) O my Lord Hari! Mud and foam are seen in the waters of the Ganga, for that is the inherent nature of river water. Yet the water of the sacred Ganga never loses its purely spiritual nature.xix*
vaishnava-sharira, aprakrita sada,
kabhu nahe jada, tathapi ye ninde,
pode se vishamadharme
2) One may likewise find natural defects in the body of a Vaishnava, yet his body is always spiritual. It is never to be considered material. That person who criticizes the body of a Vaishnava falls into deadly irreligion.
sei aparadhe, yamera jatana,
paya jiva avirata
he nanda-nandana! sei aparadhe,
yeno nahi hoi hata
3) For such an offense, the fallen soul ceaselessly suffers the tortures of Yamaraja, lord of death. O youthful son of Nanda! I pray that I will not be destroyed by committing such an offense.
tomara vaishnava, vaibhava tomara,
amare koruna doya
tabe mora gati, ha’be tava prati,
pa’bo tava pada-chaya
4) The Vaishnava is Your own, representing Your glorious divine potency. May he be merciful to me. Then my life’s journey will turn toward You, and I will attain shelter in the shade of Your lotus feet.
vaishnava thakura, doyara sagara,
e dase koruna kori’
diya pada-chaya, shodho he amaya,
tomara carana dhori
1) O revered Vaishnava Thakura! O ocean of mercy! Please be merciful to me, your humble servant. Purify me by giving the shade of your lotus feet. Your feet I clasp submissively.
chaya vega domi’, chaya dosha shodhi’,
chaya guna deho’ dase
chaya sat-sanga, deho’ he amare,
bosechi sangera ashe
2) Please help me to control the six urges, purify me of the six faults, and please instill in your servant the six good qualities. Oh, bestow upon me the six kinds of holy association! I am seated here in the hope of having your company.xx*
ekaki amara, nahi paya bala,
tumi kripa kori’, shraddha-bindu diya,
3) On my own, I find I have no strength to chant the holy name of Lord Hari. Please be merciful by awarding me with a particle of faith and giving me the great treasure of the holy name of Krishna.
krishna se tomara, krishna dite paro,
tomara shakati ache
ami to’ kangala, `krishna’ `krishna’ boli’,
dhai tava pache pache
4) Krishna is yours, therefore you are able to give Him to others. This is certainly within your power. I am indeed wretched and fallen, simply running after you crying “Krishna! Krishna!”
tomare bhuliya, avidya-pidaya,
pidita rasana mora
krishna-nama-sudha, bhalo nahi lage,
1) O my Lord Hari! Because of forgetting You, my tongue has become embittered with the disease of ignorance. I cannot relish the sweet nectar of Your holy name of Krishna, for I have become addicted to the taste of worldly pleasures.xxi*
prati-dina jadi, adara koriya,
se nama kirtana kori
sitapala jeno, nashi’ roga-mula,
krame swadu hoya, hari!
2) If I sing that holy name of Yours aloud every day with warm affection, then as sugar candy taken medicinally destroys the very disease which makes it taste bitter (jaundice), so Your holy name, O Lord Hari, will cure my spiritual disease and allow me to gradually taste Your sweetness.
durdaiva amara, se name adara,
na hoilo, doyamoya!
dasha aparadha, amara durdaiva,
kemone hoibe kshoya
3) How great is my misfortune that I feel no appreciation for Your holy name, O merciful Lord! In such a lamentable state, how will I be freed from committing the ten offenses to the holy name?
anudina jeno, tava nama gai,
kramete kripaya tava
aparadha ja’be, name ruci ha’be,
4) If I sing Your name every day, then gradually by Your mercy the ten offenses will disappear, taste for Your holy name will grow within me, and then I shall relish the intoxicating wine of that name.
shiksha dila mora kane
“jano mora katha, namera kangala!
rati pa’be nama-gane
1) O my Lord Hari! Shri Rupa Goswami, in the form of the spiritual master, spoke these instructions into my ears: “Try to understand my words, O you who beg for the gift of the holy name! You will then develop attraction for singing the holy name.
parama jatane kori’
rasana-manase, koraho niyoga,
2) “Following the scriptural rules and regulations, engage your tongue and your mind in carefully cultivating Lord Krishna’s nama (holy names), rupa (divine forms), guna (transcendental qualities), and sucarita (wonderful pastimes). This should be done according to the recommended order of ascending progression.xxii*
braje kori’ basa, raganuga hoiya,
smarana kirtana koro
e nikhila kala, koraho japana,
upadesha-sara dharo’ ”
3) “Always dwelling in the holy land of Vraja, become a practitioner of raganuga-bhakti (spontaneous loving devotion) while engaging in smarana (remembrance) and kirtana (glorification). Spend every moment of your time in these ways. Just accept this as the essence of all instructions.”
ha! rupa-gosai, doya kori’ kabe,
dibe dine braja-basa
ragatmika tumi, tava padanuga,
hoite dasera asha
4) O Rupa Goswami! When will you, out of your causeless mercy, enable this poor wretched soul to reside in Vraja? You are a ragatmika devotee—an eternally liberated, intimate associate of Radha and Krishna. This humble servant of yours desires to become a loyal follower of your lotus feet.
bodo kripa kori’, gauda-vana majhe,
godrume diyacho sthana
ajna dila more, ei braje bosi’,
hari-nama koro gana
1) O Gurudeva! Because you are so merciful, you gave me a place to live in Godruma amid the woodlands of Gauda-desha, with this order to fulfill: “Dwell here in this sacred place of Vraja and sing the holy name of Hari.”
kintu kabe prabhu, yogyata arpibe,\
e dasere doya kori’
citta sthira habe, sakala sohibo,
ekante bhajibo hari
2) But when, O master, out of your great mercy, will you bestow upon this servant the spiritual qualification to fulfill that order? My mind will then become tranquil, I will endure all hardships, and I will serve Lord Hari with undivided attention.
abhyasa hoilo manda
nija-karma-doshe, e deho hoilo,
3) Due to attachment to worldly pleasures in childhood and youth, I have developed many bad habits. Due to the reaction of these sinful acts my body itself has become an impediment to the service of the Supreme Lord.
vardhakye ekhona, panca-roge hata,
kemone bhojibo bolo’
kandiya kandiya, tomara carane,
4) Now, in old age, afflicted by the five-fold illnesses, how will I serve the Lord? O master, please tell me! Weeping and weeping, I have fallen at your feet, overwhelmed with anxiety.xxiii*
kripa-bindu diya, koro’ ei dase,
trinapeksha ati hina
sakala sahane, bala diya koro’,
1) O Gurudeva! By administering a drop of your mercy make this servant of yours infinitely more humble than a blade of grass. Giving me the strength to bear all trials and troubles, free me from desires for personal honor.xxiv*
sakale sammana, korite shakati,
deho’ natha! jathajatha
tabe to’ gaibo, hari-nama-sukhe,
aparadha ha’be hata
2) O lord and master! Inspire me with the power to befittingly honor all living beings. Only then will I sing the holy name of the Lord in great ecstasy, and my offensive activities will cease.
kabe heno kripa, labhiya e jana,
kritartha hoibe, natha!
shakti-buddhi-hina, ami ati dina,
koro’ more atma-satha
3) When will this person be indeed blessed by receiving your mercy, O lord and master? Devoid of all strength and intelligence, I am very low and fallen. Please make me your own.
yogyata-vicare, kichu nahi pai,
karuna na hoile, kandiya kandiya,
prana na rakhibo ara
4) When I examine myself for worthiness, I find nothing of value. Therefore Your mercy is the essence of life. If you are not merciful to me, then I will constantly weep and weep, no longer being able to maintain my life.
kabe mora sei din ha’be
mana sthira kori’, nirjane bosiya,
krishna-nama ga’bo jabe
samsara-phukara, kane na poshibe,
deho-roga dure ro’be
1) O Gurudeva! When will that day be mine? With a steady mind, sitting in a secluded place, I will sing the name of Shri Krishna. The tumultuous pandemonium of worldly existence will no longer echo in my ears, and the diseases of the body will remain far away.
`hare krishna’ boli’, gahite gahite,
nayane bohibe lora
dehete pulaka, udita hoibe,
premete koribe bhora
2) When I chant “Hare Krishna” tears of love will flow and flow from my eyes. Ecstatic rapture will arise within my body, causing my hair to stand on end and my entire being to become overwhelmed with divine love.
gada-gada vani, mukhe bahiribe,
kanpibe sharira mama
gharma muhur muhuh, virvarna hoibe,
stambhita pralaya sama
3) Faltering words choked with emotion will issue from my mouth. My body will tremble, constantly perspire, turn pale and discolored, and become stunned. All of this will be like a devastation of ecstatic love and cause me to fall unconscious.xxv*
nishkapate heno, dasha kabe ha’be,
nirantara nama ga’bo
aveshe rohiya, deha-yatra kori’,
tomara karuna pa’bo
4) When will such a genuine ecstatic condition be mine? I will constantly sing the holy name and remain absorbed in profound devotion while traveling in the material body. In this way I will receive your mercy.
kabe tava karuna-prakashe
shri-gauranga-lila, hoya nitya-tattwa,
ei dridha vishvase
`hari hari’ boli’, godruma-kanane,
1) O Gurudeva! When will it be, as a manifestation of your mercy? I will become fixed in the firm faith that Lord Gauranga’s pastimes are eternal realities. Chanting “Hari! Hari!” I will wander throughout the groves of Godruma, hoping to catch a glimpse of those pastimes.
nitai, gauranga, adwaita, shrivasa,
krishna-nama-rase, bhasa’be jagat,
2) The five personalities—Nitai, Gauranga, Advaita, Shrivasa, and Gadadhara—will flood the entire universe with the intoxicating nectar of the holy name of Shri Krishna by performing a maha-sankirtan.
dekhiya dekhiya, se lila-madhuri,
bhasibo premera bane
3) With my own ears I will hear the sounds of playful dancing and the rhythmic pulsations of the mridanga drums. By constantly looking and looking upon the sweetness and beauty of that pastime, I will float in the floodtide of divine love.
na dekhi’ abara, se lila-ratana,
kandi ha gauranga! boli’
amare vishayi, pagala boliya,
angete dibeka dhuli
4) The next moment losing sight of the jewel of that pastime, I shall weep and cry out, “O my Lord Gauranga!” Materialists will then proclaim me thoroughly mad and will throw dust upon my body.
Thus ends the section on Bhajana-Lalasa.