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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > All Scriptures By Acharyas > Book Distribution > Book Distribution Glories > The Sankirtana Tradition > Bolo Krsna Bhaja

Bolo Krsna Bhaja Krsna Koro Krsna-siksa

When Shrila Prabhupada began preaching Krsna conscious­ness in the West, he used the example of Jagai and Madhai to demonstrate the incredible mercy of Shri Chaitanya Maha-prabhu, because wherever he looked he saw Jagais and Madhais. By using this example, he clearly implied, "Don't worry, by Lord Chaitanya's mercy even you can be saved." Jagai and Madhai were members of a wealthy and learned aristocratic family that had been respected in Navadvlpa for many generations, but these two men were extraordinary, for they were the greatest debauchees, murderers, drunkards, and thieves. After stealing someone's belongings, they would burn down his house. They would rape women and even kill peo­ple. They were very big, very crazy, and could not be stopped. Even the law was afraid of them. They were total outcasts— black sheep in society—and their family had rejected them long ago. They constantly wandered the streets of Navadvlpa in a drunken state, making big scenes. Whenever one of them was not paying attention, the other one would beat him with his fists. One moment they would embrace each other in brotherly love, and the next moment they would pull each other by the hair and fall to the ground, fighting. They were completely mad—more or less the way we were before joining Shrila Prabhupada's movement. One day Lord Chaitanya told Nityananda Prabhu and Hari­dasa Thakura, "I have a new program for you. I want you to go out and preach. Just tell everybody, 'Bolo krsna, bhaja krsna, koro krsna-siksa—chant Hare Krsna, worship Lord Krsna, and live according to His transcendental instructions.'"


Lord Nityananda and Haridasa Thakura would go out every day, knock on every door, and sayr "Chant Krsna's name, worship Him, and accept His instructions into your life." Shrila Prabhupada often cited Locana dasa Thakura, who described how Lord Nityananda cut a canal from the ocean of mercy, which was blocked on all four sides. Taking that canal to the door of every house, He would flood everybody in the house with love of Godhead. Seeing the effulgence coming from the bodies of these two wonderful personalities, the pious people would say, "Yes, I will do it from today on. Welcome, please come in and take something to eat." But Nityananda and Haridasa would reply, "No, we have no time. We are busy preaching, and we have to go to the next door."  At some houses, however, the impious people would shout at them, saying, "What are you doing here? You are simply frauds and imposters. If you come back again, I'm going to call the law!" Other rascals would say, "You only come here to get something to fill your bellies."


"This Nimai Pandita has ruined many good persons, and now He is ruining you as well." "Can't you understand that you should only chant 'Krsna' softly? Don't you think your God is going to be disturbed by all your screaming and howling?" When Lord Nityananda and Haridasa Thakura came back every night and told Lord Chaitanya about the rascals they had met, Lord Chaitanya would say, "Do not fear, I will cut off their heads with My cakra. Anybody who does not accept what you say, I will cut to pieces." But Nityananda Prabhu would pacify Him, saying, "Please wait. We want to continue, and we haven't met everybody yet.


Once Lord Nityananda and Haridasa Thakura were out preaching, and they saw a big crowd of people. Lord Nitya­nanda asked what was going on, and some of the bystanders replied, "Oh, it is those hooligans Jagai and Madhai."

"Who are they?"

"They are terrible persons, Gosain. This is no place for You. For Your own safety, You should leave this place immediately." But Lord Nityananda's interest was aroused. "Tell Me more," He said. "Who are these two, Jagai and Madhai?" After the people explained the whole story, Lord Nityananda con­tinued, "Oh, I want to go and save them. If these persons are saved, then everybody will worship My Lord, Gaurariga. Everybody will understand that His mercy is supreme in this world, and they will all sing His praises. What a wonderful opportunity!" In response, the well-meaning people cried out a warning: "Don't go near these fellows! They will harm You or even kill You! They are crazy, don't You understand? Take our words seriously!"


Lord Nityananda and Haridasa Thakura ignored them and went near the two brothers. Approaching from the side, out of the brothers' vision, Lord Nityananda called out, "Listen, dear brothers! Chant Krsna's name, worship Him, and take His instructions into your life. If you just chant His holy name, you will be happy." In one respect the sinful brothers were all right. They were not aparadhls. They didn't understand how to offend Vais­navas, because they were always too drunk. But now two Vaisnavas were standing in front of them. When the brothers heard the request that they surrender to Krsna and chant His name, their eyes turned blood-red with rage, and they started chasing Lord Nityananda and Haridasa Thakura, who went racing off in full flight. The two monstrous brothers drunkenly stumbled along after them, screaming, "Wait! We'll show you what we think of your chanting! Why don't you stay here and get to know us better?"


Then Haridasa Thakura said to Lord Nityananda, "An­other fine mess You've gotten us into. We came here to preach, and look what's happened now! It's all because of Your magnanimous nature." Lord Nityananda replied, "It's not My fault! It's your Lord Chaitanya's fault. He's the one who sent us here." Arguing as they were running, Haridasa Thakura com-plained, "I don't know why I keep coming out with You! You're always getting us into trouble. You jump into the Ganges and start wrestling with the crocodiles. You chase after children playing on the riverbank, screaming frighteningly, and I have to console the angry parents who want to beat You, trying to explain to them that You're an avadhuta and You think You're a cowherd boy. You ask girls to marry You. You milk cows and drink all the milk. You steal buckets of butter and cream, and when the bewildered cowherd men come to beat You, You run away, leaving me alone to ward them off. I don't know why I come with You all the time. This preaching gets us into so much difficulty!"


In this way they ran down the road toward Srlvasa Pandita's house enjoying a mock argument. Finally, Jagai and Madhai became so confused that they just fell down on the street, and Lord Nityananda and Haridasa Thakura slipped out of sight to recover. Breathing heavily and looking back in the direction of their fallen pursuers, Nityananda and Haridasa began to laugh, joking about the two drunkards and em­bracing each other in ecstasy. Upon hearing about everything that had happened, Lord Chaitanya angrily exclaimed, "I will chop them to pieces im­mediately!" But Nityananda Prabhu implored, "No, give us a chance to save them. If You will kindly offer Your mercy to them, they will surely be saved."


At this Lord Chaitanya said, "If You want them to be saved, then they are immediately saved. It has already happened by Your desire. Soon we shall see them in our company as Vaisnavas." When the associates of the Lord heard this decree, they all started to jubilantly chant "Hari bol!"  Soon, by divine arrangement (Lord Chaitanya's desire), Jagai and Madhai set up their den on the Ganges where Lord Chaitanya took His bath. The rogues were so nasty— rolling around drunkenly and doing all kinds of horrible things—that nobody wanted to bathe in the Ganges any­more. Lord Chaitanya would keep His distance, but when Jagai and Madhai saw Him, they would mockingly request Him to conduct a Durga-arati, because they liked to dance drunkenly to the sound of the sweet klrtana coming every night from the Lord's house. Shortly thereafter, Lord Nityananda thought, "Now is My chance." He stood before Jagai and Madhai peacefully and said, "My Lord Chaitanya wishes that you be blessed with love of Godhead. Please kindly accept the lotus feet of the Lord and render devotional service unto Him."


"Who is this?" Madhai asked, "What does this guy want?" In reply Jagai sneeringly drawled, "He's an avadhuta." When Madhai heard this, he picked up a piece of a broken earthen wine pot and threw it at Nityananda Prabhu. It hit Him in the forehead and blood came pouring down all over His body. Madhai raised his arms and moved forward, wanting to attack again, but Jagai grabbed him and protested, "What are you doing? Are you mad? He's innocent! He didn't do anything wrong. Why are you threatening Him like this? You should protect Him." The townspeople witnessing the inci­dent quickly ran to Lord Chaitanya and told Him what had happened. When Lord Chaitanya came and saw blood all over Nityananda Prabhu, He raised His index finger in the air and cried out threateningly, "Cakra!" Summoned thus, the Su-darsana cakra immediately appeared, spinning on His finger. The brothers were struck with amazement and fear, for they knew that this cakra was ready to chop them in half. Nityananda Prabhu appealed to the Lord. "Stop!" He cried, "You have appeared in this incarnation to save them, not to kill them! Your mission is not to kill the demons but to flood them with love of Godhead. Jagai was trying to protect Me. It's all over now; it was just an accident, and 1 don't feel any pain. There is nothing to worry about and I am not disturbed."


When Lord Chaitanya heard this He immediately embraced Jagai, saying, "Oh, My dear Jagai, you are so wonderful for protecting My Lord Nityananda." Jagai immediately fell over unconscious in love of Godhead, shaking and rolling on the ground. Since Jagai and Madhai were practically like one soul, Madhai also became purified. Realizing what a fool he was, he threw himself at the feet of Lord Chaitanya, saying, "Please purify me too! Why only him?"

Lord Chaitanya replied, "I cannot deliver you. You were responsible for shedding Nityananda's blood." But Madhai begged, "You cannot say this, my Lord. How can You act against Your own religion? In Your previous incar­nation You even gave liberation to demons who pierced Your body with arrows. And they were big demons, whereas I'm only a little demon! Why shouldn't You accept me?"


Lord Chaitanya was firm. "That may be good logic," He said, "but you have offended Nityananda Prabhu. Go and surren­der to Him!" Madhai immediately clasped the lotus feet of Lord Nityananda, and then he too became mad in love of Godhead. Afterward they all went back to Lord Chaitanya's house. When the other devotees saw how Jagai and Madhai had become the personal associates of the Lord and were rolling on the ground in love of Godhead, they could not believe it. They asked, "How did these drunks become devotees?" Lord Chaitanya answered, "Don't call them drunks! They are Vaisnavas! Accept them as your brothers." Everybody was amazed. In an equally amazing way, Shrila Prabhupada transformed sinful wretches like us into blissful devotees of Lord Chaitanya and engaged us in the Lord's eternal sankirtana- lila.