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SRI SRI RASIKA-MANGALA
by Shri Gopijanavallabha dasa
The First Wave
There are numerous Puranas in the world, but with the exception of Gita-Govinda, none of them show the handwriting of Shri Krishna. In the same way no devotee was ever painted by the Lord, Shrimati Radharani painted a mark on the forehead of Shri Syamananda Deva.
Syamananda, a gem of kindness, is a mine of extreme joy, an ocean of favour, proprietor of the beauties of the three worlds, the abode of the essence of love, the abode of all good fortune, the only resort of those who are aggreived, the supreme jewel of sports, a gem of mercy and full of the most elegant intelligence.
I bow down to Shri Rasiskananda who is like the Sun, the giver of deep joy, the possessor of ujjvala rasa, a mine of Krishna-bhava, who can bring peace to our minds and remove the darkness of ignorance, the well-wisher of the devotees, the extinguisher of all miseries, the source of all joy, the father of such wealth as mercy and the deliverer of the poor.
Oh most merciful Shrila Sanatana Goswami Prabhupada! Oh Shrila Rupa Goswami Prabhupada, the only resort of the fallen souls! Oh Bhatta Prabhus (Shrila Raghunatha Bhatta and Shrila Gopala Bhatta Goswamis), oh Dasa Goswami Prabhupada. Oh Shrila Jiva Goswami Prabhupada! Please bestow your mercy on my worthless self.
I worship the lotus feet of Shri Syamananda Deva by whose mercy one can attain love and devotion to Shri Hari.
I worship the feet of Rasikananda who is ever joyful, the abode of well-being, and who is fully elegant.
Let all mankind serve Shri Murari (Shri Rasikananda Deva) whose face is like the moon, whose words are like nectar, in whose throat resides the goddess Sarasvati, whose bodily glow is like Laksmi, his teeth are like kunda flowers and pearls, and his smile is dazzling and his eyes are like bees while his arms resemble the stalk of a lotus.
I worship the lotus feet of Shri Guru, Syamananda Raya, by whose grace I have attained love for Krishna. Simply by the touch of his feet the inhabitants of the three worlds can be relieved from the bondage of material existence and float in the mellows of love and devotion. He dominated the three worlds by his mercy and showed extreme kindness to all who were poor, fallen or miserable. The moon of the Gopa dynasty, by appearing in Utkala, has removed the darkness of sin by dint of his love and devotion. He is an ocean of joy and favour and the possessor of a beauty that can win over all three worlds. He is a sea of love and an ocean of nectar and the most fortunate person in all respects. He can remove the agony of the three worlds and his merciful words melt any heart. When will Syamananda the son of Durika, who is the head jewel of all elegances and who has performed his sports by appearing in different ages, bestow his favour on me so that I can sing his glories. I worship the feet of the three Thakuranis, the wives of Shri Guru, by whose favour I have learnt about love and devotion to Krishna. Oh wife of Syamananda, disciple of Hrdayananda, who is an image of love of Krishna, please favour me and allow me to sing the glories of Rasika.
I worship the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu the son of Saci devi, who appears age after age to destroy the miscreants and protect the devotees. Seeing the ominous Kali and being compassionate on all beings He advented Himself in Navadvipa along with His associates. Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu the shelter of the needy and distressed, who is meditated on by Brahma, Siva and Purandara, please favour me, Oh son of Jagannatha Misra, and enable me to describe the biography of Rasika. Now I worship Lord Nityananda, non-different from Lord Balarama, whose beauty defeats millions of cupids (Kama), the deliverer of the three worlds by indiscriminately distributing love of Krishna to all poor and fallen persons and to both high and low caste persons. I worship Saci devi, Jagannatha Misra, Harai Pandit and Padmavati. I worship both the Thakuranis, Laksmi and Vishnupriya, and I worship Vasudha and Jahnava, the wives of the elder brother. I worship Advaita Acarya for by his grace one can obtain devotion to Lord Chaitanya. I worship Sita Thakurani who was an image of devotion at the time of Lord Chaitanya's advent. I worship Shri Acyutananda, the son af Advaita Acarya and I worship the whole branch of that tree from Advaita Acarya. I worship Virabhadra, whose shining features are famous throughout the world for his glorious manifestations. I worship all the branches of the devotees who can enable me to sing the glories of Rasika. With great delight I worship Ramai and Sundarananda whose glories are famous on this earth. I worship Gauridasa Thakura, alias Suvala Raya, who is a favourite devotee of Lord Nityananda, a favourite playmate of Krishna amd who belongs to the same Vaishnava family as Syamananda. If that prabhu favours me then I shall be able to describe the biography of Rasika. I worship Uddharana Datta, a favourite companion of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. I worship Murari Thakura and Kamalakanta, I worship Purusottama, Manohara and Kaliya Krishna dasa. I worship the eight Giris and the eight Puris as favourite followers of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. I worship the eight Bharatis among whom Visvambhara is initiated as an ascetic. I worship the Valakas as followers of Chaitanya and I worship the sixty-four Mahantas too. I worship the Gurukula gladly and I worship Haridasa. I worship Govinda Goswami and Mahesh Thakura. I worship Dinlava Thakurani.
I worship all groups and branches of Vaishnavas along with all their companions. I worship all brahmins and all ascetics the seven oceans and this earth. Among them I worship all the holy places with special respect for just by hearing about these holy places one can awaken devotion for Lord. I worship Shri Vrndavana, Madana Gopala, Shri Govinda, Gopinatha, Venka Vehara, Radha Vallabha, Kalindi, Yamuna and all Vraja Pura.
I worship Gokula, Mathura and Shri Kesava Raya who can remove all kinds of sins from one who hears of their glories. I worship Yadava Raya, the owner of Gokula, I worship Gopala Raya, the holder of Govardhana. I worship Dvaraka along with Ranacora Raya which is more famous than Vaikuntha as an abode of Lord Krishna. I worship Badarikasrama along with Nara-Narayana. I worship Gandaki, Gomati, Naimisaranya, Pravasa, Puskara, and Godavari, Narmada, Sarasvati, Sindhu and Kaveri. I worship Ayodhya, Kuruksetra and Setabandhu which are all famous as holy places. I worship Hastinapura, the palace of the Pandavas where Krishna lived for the sake of His devotees. I worship the famous holy places of Kanchi, Avantika and the seven cities where Lord Hari lived. I worship Shri Purusottama, the Lord of Nilacala and I worship Gaya, Ganga,Varanasi, Prayag, etc. I worship Navadvipa on the bank of the Bhagirathi as the abode of Shri Chaitanya Candra Mahaprabhu. I worship the famous Ganga-sagara. I worship Navadvipa and Tamralipta. I worship heaven, earth and the netherworld especially all of the holy places contained within them. I request all of you to favour me and allow me to describe the pastimes of Rasika. By the grace of Rasika I am mentioning briefly a few names to whom I offer my obeisances. I bow to Gopiramana, a companion of Shri Chaitanya. I bow to Rama Thakura, an abode of all qualities. I worship the feet of Krishnananda and Dvarika and I worship the feet of Acutya and Bhavani. I worship Prasada Thakura and Balarama dasa who lived with the brothers of Syamananda. I worship the feet of the thoughtful Manohara and Professor Kisora. I worship Shri Tulasi dasa, a master of sankirtana who remained with Shri Rasika throughout his life.
At the beginning of sankirtana, Rasika first of all worshipped him by offering him clothes and ornaments. If Rasika did not get a tulasi leaf then he would wash the feet of Tulasi dasa and drink the water. I take hold of the feet of all my seniors and pray to them to allow me to begin this biography of Rasika. I will discuss briefly about a few senior Vaishnavas and although the order will not be correct gradually I shall mention all of them, one by one. I worship Yadavendra dasa, the elder brother of Nityananda, I worship Kisora dasa and Valaka dasa, Vaishnava dasa, Gopinatha dasa, Monahara and Damodara Prabhu, the servant of Krishna. Always absorbed in the joy of Krishna, his eyes constantly shed tears of love. Damodara, who knew nothing but Krishna, had a close relationship with Rasika and accepted many disciples. I worship the Brahmin Govinda dasa and also Gopala, Balabhadra and Haridasa. I worship Govinda of Vrndavana and Syamasundara and Uddhava.
I worship Syamadasa, Jagannatha, Kaviraja, Balabhadra, Cintamani dasa and Shri Radhavallabha dasa. I worship Ananta dasa, Raghunatha dasa of Mathura, Dvija Padmanabha and Gangadhara dasa. I worship Shri Radhamohan, Sirikara, Kanudasa, Govinda dasa, Bhudhara, Radha-carana and Purusottama. I worship Ananta, Radhavallabha, Radhadhara, Gokula and Damodara. I worship Shri Syamarangini dasa, Shri Syama Tarangi, Abhaya, Ramagovinda, Ananda, Mathura Syama, Madhuvana dasa and millions of other devotees of Krishna. I worship Shri Anandananda, sons of Divakara, Gopa Mathira dasa and Gouria Mathura dasa, Jagannatha dasa, Radhavallabha, Bhudhara, Rama dasa and Shri Chaitanya dasa. I worship Shri Krishna dasa, Gopala dasa, Mukunda, Bhupati and Syamananda dasa who was famous as a poet. I worship Shri Kesava and Shri Jagannatha. I worship Brghu Purusottama, Bhudevi and Shri Chaitanya dasa. I worship Vaidya Shri Gopala dasa, Madana Mohana dasa, Gadadhara, Balabhadra and Vamsi. I worship the great brahmin Purusottama who surrendered his caste, wealth and life to Syamananda Prabhu. I worship the brahmin Damodara and Syamananda dasa whose abode was the feet of Syamananda. He along with his family were sold to the feet of Syamananda and knew nothing but guru, sadhu and Krishna.
I worship Shri Mathura dasa who dedicated everything to Syamananda. He was a favourite disciple of Syamananda and an embodiment of love and devotion. I worship Dvija Haridasa, Banamali, Radhakrishna, Dharamvara, Narayana, Gauranga, Purusottama, Madhava, Dvija Gopala, Manohara, Bhudeva and Govinda Bhattacarya who lived in Banga where he preached the teachings of Syamananda. I worship Kisora dasa, Kanudasa, Gopa Mathura dasa, Rasamaya dasa, Shri Gauranga dasa and Manohara dasa. I worship all the followers of Syamananda who lived in different countries. I worship Nilamvara dasa, Shri Ananta Raya and Sanatana. I gladly worship Thakura Vishnudasa who always remained with Rasika. I worship Thakurani Syamadasi, the wife of Rasika and an embodiment of love and devotion. She was a disciple of Syamananda, a devoted wife, a mother to all, who worshipped Govinda throughout her life. I worship Shri Devaki, the daughter of Rasika. She was a disciple of Syamananda and the eldest daughter of Rasika. I worship Radhananda Thakura, the son of Rasika and a favourite disciple of Syamananda. He was always absorbed in Krishna consciousness and tears constantly fell from his eyes. He was fully conversant with the scriptures and an expert musician. I worship Shri Krishna bhanja deva who was fully devoted to Syamananda. Kuladiptacandra was a favourite disciple of Syamananda who organised great festivals to worship Krishna in his kingdom. He was a good ruler and a sincere devotee of Hari. Sixty-four kinds of devotion resided in his heart and he was a great brahmin. He was compared to Pariksit, Ambarisa, Sanaka, etc. who had taken birth as a symbol of devotion to Krishna. By his good fortune he was a powerful king with dominion over his rivals. I seek the favour of this illustrious King to allow me to sing the glory of Rasika. I worship Krishnananda dasa who did not know anything but Syamananda. I worship Vrndavati, the daughter of Rasika who was famous for her politeness and perserverence. I worship the pure-hearted Krishnagati, the middle son of Rasika.
He was so intoxicated with love of Krishna that he could not differentiate between day and night. Krishna was his only life and resort. I worship Radhakrishna dasa, the youngest son of Rasika who was a favourite of Syamananda and had a very pure heart. He was full of love and kind to all beings. I worship Gopala, Govinda, Ramadasa, Madhava, Kisora and Radhamohana. I worship the feet of Purusottama dasa, Shri Syamananda dasa, Daria Krishna dasa and Radhavallabha dasa. How can I count the number of numerous servants of Syamananda? I worship the son of Acyuta, Dasa Jagannatha, Ananta, Shridhara and Kasinatha. I worship Nirmalvara, Sirikara, Kapilesvara, Gangadasa and other companions. I worship Shri Syamagopala, Cintamani, Vihari, Dinasyama, Ramakrishna, Syamagopinatha, Vaidyanatha and others. There were countless disciples of Syamananda so which names should I mention first? I simply pray to them all to empower me to preach the glory of Rasika. I fall at the feet of Rasamaya and his wife and five sons who were dedicated to the feet of Rasika. I worship Vamsimathura dasa, the uncle of Rasika who appeared with the beginning of Syamananda's mission. I worship all who belong to his father's and mother's side. We all belong to the Gopa dynasty to whom the feet of Syamananda are caste, creed and nationality. I worship Gopijanavallabha, Haricarana dasa, Madhava, Rasikananda, Kisora and the five sons of Rasamaya who were fully devoted to the son of Acutya. The son of Vallabha was Radhavallabha and Rasika was like his father. He and his family were servants of Rasika. They were like the Pandavas who were always in the care of Krishna. They were all devotees of Krishna and never indulged in any type of quarrel, by the grace of Rasika. Rasika always protected them and they were always attached to him and knew nothing but worship, meditation and austerity. Lord Krishna is the friend of the needy and He should always be worshipped, but devotees should be worshipped even more than Him. Rasika's uncle, Tulasi Thakura, used to hold festivals every year and seeing his love for Krishna the people of Utkala advised him to sing the glory of Rasika. As he felt ashamed to declare his qualities I dare not say anything about him. In the meantime Rasika of Verhapala asked everyone, "Is there a fortunate person in Syamananda's group who can describe the method of service to Lord Krishna according to their rules? It will be very helpful if someone can describe all the groups of Syamananda." Being confident of this I have accepted the responsibility and take the feet of Rasika on my head. Thinking of the lotus feet of Krishna, I Gopijanavallabha, a servant of Syamananda, sing the glory of Rasika. The glory of a devotee is a vast, bottomless ocean which is beyond the reach of even Brahma, Siva, Indra and others. The glory of a devotee is greater than that of Krishna and we should always desire to take the dust from their feet. Rasika Murari was an exalted devotee of Krishna and his qualities cannot be described in thousands of years. I am a poor, incapable and worthless fellow. Whatever I say is by the grace of the lord of my life, Rasika. How is it possible to describe those pastimes which are like a bottomless ocean? Because of the requests of the Syamanandi Vaishnavas, and my own confidence in his grace, I shall describe the glorious virtues of Rasika deva. Listening to the qualities of Krishna can help to cross this material world but listening to the qualities of a devotee can help to cross the three kalas.If one hears only once the Rasika-mangala millions of sins can be immediately destroyed, all bonds can be removed and one can attain love and devotion. Listening to Rasika-mangala removes all sorrows and misery, brings wealth to the poor and a son to the childless. Wherever people are suffering from the bite of Kala hearing and chanting of this Rasika-mangala makes one free from the bonds of the material world and can easily bestow everything desirable such as a wife, children, wealth and love and devotion. Don't be discouraged by the hardships in reading the text, just remember that a poisonous snake always vomits poison. Give up all unnecessary occupations and listen of the qualities of Rasika, thus you will easily attain shelter at his feet. The snakes in hell, the gods in heaven and wise people on earth all listen to it. Any person, young or old, man or woman, if they hear Rasika-mangala only once, their individual desires will be granted and they can attain fame, glory, wealth and family. This eastern part is just the essence but it helps one to cross the material world. Oh my friends listen to Rasika-mangala and you will immediately attain love of Krishna. I, the son of Rasamaya, write this song making the feet of Syamananda my ornaments.
All glory to Syamananda, a genious, the abode of all good qualities and the life of the poor and fallen. Oh Prabhu, please favour me and allow me to sing your glories. In describing your appearance in this world I have no fear of public opinion because Rasika Sekara is beheind me. I cannot live without singing his glory because Rasika Murari has made Vallabha mad. His glory cannot be covered anymore than the glow of the moon can be covered by a palm - it declares it's own glory. Syamananda is said to be the life of Rasika and after showing devotion to Syamananda, he has become famous as a giver of devotion. Syamananda took his birth in the village of Utkala at a time when the people were determined to commit sins. Now I shall tell you about how they were delivered by Syamananda and his favourite disciple Rasikendra candra. First I shall describe the mystery of his birth and later on how he travelled to many holy places. Shri Krishna Mandala was from the Gopa family but left Gaura to settle in Utkala. He built his house in a village named Dandesvara. His wife Durika, was a devoted lady famous for her kindness, sobriety and mercy. The couple were famous in brahminical society for being pure-hearted and tolerant of all religions. Syamananda took his birth in this family and was in course of time duly married. After a brief period of married life he became absorbed in love of Krishna and could not maintain his interest in the household affairs. However, overwhelmed by his attraction for the Lord and His holy dhama, he resolved to visit His abode. His relatives could not change his mind and his younger brother Balarama, who was a pure-hearted, calm and quiet person was selected to take charge of the family
For his first pilgrimage Syamananda first of all went to see the forms of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and Lord Nityananda at Amuna. Then he went to offer obeisances at the feet of Hrdayananda. Hearing of his renunciation and seeing his bodily beauty, Hrdayananda could at once understand that this person was a great devotee of Lord Krishna. He asked him, "Whose servant are you and why have you come here?" He answered, "My name is Dukhi Krishna dasa. I am your servant life after life." Hearing this Hrdayananda became very happy and initiated him giving him the name Syamananda. At this time he ordered him to make Vaishnavas in each and every family in Utkala, to preach the sixteen syllable mantra of Hare Krishna, and to deliver all moving and non-moving entities. Hearing this Syamananda felt ashamed and begged that he might be given the power to fulfill this order. He also requested that he could go for pilgrimage and subsequently visited Vakresvara, Vaidyanatha, Ganga and Kasi the abode of Siva. In the month of Magha he visited Prayaga then he went to Mathura and then to Vrndavana and saw all the holy spots there and toured all the twelve forests of Gokula. He visited the Pandavas residence at Hastinapura and then went to Dvaraka to see Ranchor Raya. He moved with such speed his companions could not keep pace with him and he never cared for his health. He went to see the place of Kapila in Sindhu and then to Matsyatirtha, Sivakanci and Vishnukanci.
He also visited Kuruksetra, Prthudaka, Bindusarova and Prabhasa-ksetra. He was always joyful and never cared about day and night. Whenever he heard about a holy place, he did not hesitate to visit it. He visited Teritakupayana tirtha, Visala, Brahma tirtha, Candra tirtha, Pratisvata, Praci, Sarasvati, Naimisaranya and then he reached Ayodhya. He visited the territories of Guhaka candala and Kausiki and then went to see the hermitage of Paulastya on the banks of the Gomati and Ganduki. He took bath in the Sarasi tirtha on Mahendra Hill and went to see the source of the Ganges in Hardwar. He took darsana of Lord Narayana in Badarikasrama and visited the hermitage of Vyasadeva. He constantly chanted the Lord's holy name and shed pools of tears. Next he came to the banks of the Pampa and Bhagirathi. Then he saw seven Godavari, Dhenutirtha and the city of Dravira. From there he went to Vemkatadrinath temple of Kamakosthipuri, then to Kanca, south of Modhupuri he visited Haridvara and then Tamraparni. Continuing his pilgrimage he came to the oblation spot of Agasirya on the Malaya mountain, then Kalinga, the palace of Caidya and Shri Anantapura situated on the south of the ocean. He toured Panca Apsara, Gokarnakhya, Kulanaka, Trigartaka and Payasnidhana. He visited Reva, Mahismati puri, Mallatirtha, Surparaka, Praticiri and Setubandha. He travelled at will without caring for companions. When he visited Dhuritirtha he heard about the kidnapping of Maya Sita. He visited Avanti, Jiyara, Narasimha, Godavari, Trimaka, Kurmanatha and then reached Nilacala, the abode of Purusottama. Observing the Lords of his life, Krishna and Balarama, he began to tremble and cry continuously for his happiness knew no bounds. From there he went to Gangasagara and then touched the soil of his own birthplace but continued to Madhupura where he spent many days. He visited all the groves there and when he went to Rasasthala in Vrndavana he began to roll on the ground and cry out, "Where shall I get the Lord of my life, Shri Krishna." He met all the devotees of Krishna there and spent time studying scriptures under Shrila Jiva Gosvami and Haripriya dasa. Manifesting great love and devotion he spent many days in Brajapura.
By hearing the sweet message of this Rasika-mangala one can ignore the influence of the age of Kali. Just by hearing of the pilgrimage tour of Syamananda can free one from all kinds of sins. Taking the feet of my ornament, this son of Rasamaya, narrates Rasika-mangala.
Glory to Syamananda who is the abode of all good qualities. May he favour me so that I can sing his glories and these of Rasikadeva. In this Rasika-mangala, which is in four parts, I shall explain the purpose of Shri Chaitanya's sending him to deliver Utkala. The dwellers of Utkala were full of sin and never cared for Harinama or to hear the glories of Lord Hari. In Utkala, the King and all his subjects, being greedy for wealth and intoxicated by liquor, were accustomed to killing animals, and even brahmins and Vaishnavas. They worshipped many deities except for Shri Hari. Because of their offenses against the Vaishnavas, Lakshmi left this place and in their poverty they blamed any Vaishnava who came there as a thief and chased him from the town. The devotees who remained there always prayed that the Lord would send one of His servants to give the people love and devotion and destroy their sins. Being moved by the appeal of His devotees the Lord, who is always kind to His devotees, sent forth the son of Acyuta.
Now I shall describe the history of the birth of Rasika which took place in Utkala. Mallabhumna was a place in this country and in it there was the beautiful city of Rohini. This city was as large as Kataka and stood on the banks of the Suvarnarekha. There was another river called Dolanga whose water was just like the Ganges and nearby was Varajita which was a place where Rama, Sita and Laksmana had taken rest. Where the Suvarnarekha ran to the north were twelve Siva Lingas which had been worshipped by the moon of the Raghu dynasty. Many people would come and collect water at this holy place. Rohini was surrounded by such illustrious places and sacred rivers. The area was full of mango groves and jackfruit trees. and there were also orange, pomegranate and lime trees in abundance. There were many Pandava trees in those forests along with beautiful banana groves. These forests were so enchanting that even the demigods were in the habit of roaming here. There were plentiful harvests of rice, betel leaves and other such valuable items and there was no lack of wells or ponds or meadows. In the centre of the city stood a magnificent palace and the citizens lived on all sides of the fort. Hundreds of brahmins inhabited this place to practice the Vedas and smrti, They loved to perform sandhya tarpana and all around one could hear the sound of the Vedas being recited. Ascetics with sticks (ie. sannyasis?) lived here and were sincerely served by the brahmins. Within the city there dwelled a new class of persons who engaged in business and who had no want of food or money. Other classes lived at distant places and they also had no poverty or suffering. Within every home there was a tulasi tree, but despite this the inhabitants of the city had no love or devotion for Shri Krishna.
The glory of Rohini was just like that of Navadvipa, Mathura or Raghuvamsapuri. Wherever devotees continue to reside, the Vedas and Puranas describe that place to be like the Vaikuntha Dhama of Shri Krishna. I bow down to Rohini because it was the birth place of Rasikacandra. The King of that place was Shri Acyuta and he was known as a good, kind and sober man who had many friends and no scarcity of wealth. He never neglected to serve the brahmins, he was very charitable and kind to all and devoted to performing Harinama. Acyuta had four wives and many children and his pious deeds were confirmed by having Rasika as his son. One resident of Kataka named Haladhara lost all his property to the yavanas there and hearing about the good qualities of Acyuta came to settle in Rohini at the house of Gopi Mandala. With him came his wife and daughter who was full of all good qualities. Her name was Bhavani and it was her good fortune to become the mother of Rasika.
Once when Acyuta was visiting the house of Gopi Mandala he observed the girl and immediately asked for her hand in marriage. Gopi then told the parents to give their daughter to Pattanayaka and they were happy at this request although they confessed that they had no dowry to offer at her marriage. On hearing the poor appeal of the girls father, Acyuta assured him that he would take the responsibility. He then sent his servant's to different cities to collect the necessary paraphernalia for the marriage and on an auspicious day the couple were married. The ceremony was equal to that held by an emperor or even a god. The entire city was illuminated with lacs of lamps, musicians played everywhere and the joy of the city knew no bounds. I have kept this description brief and now I shall describe the mystery of Rasika's birth which is a source of pleasure to all the devotees of Syamananda. By taking the feet of Syamananda as my ornament, this son of Rasamaya is writing this book.
All glories to Syamananda, the abode of all good qualities and the life of Rasika Sekhara. After his marriage Shri Acyuta continued to rule his territories and enjoyed passing time with his favourite wife Bhavani.
In Utkala the devotees of Krishna continued to appeal to the Lord to send one of His devotees to deliver the troubled citizens there. In answer to their prayers the Lord sent Rasika down to this earth and simultaneously his companions took their births in different places of Utkala.
Now listen to how he took his birth to deliver all living entities. On an auspicious night after having past the day in discussing topics of Lord Krishna, the couple conceived a child. Day by day the neighbours and relatives were astonished to see the beauty of Bhavnai increase. They thought that most probably Brahma or Sambhu or Narayana or Vyasa, Sukadeva, Narada, Pariksit, Maharaja Janaka or any magnaminous person had taken his birth in the womb of Bhavani. Hearing the news that a great soul was about to take birth all the citizens, friends, brahmins and Vaishnavas all came to the house of Acyuta to witness the occasion. The astrologers and brahmins blessed Bhavani and confirmed that a great King would take birth from her womb. In this way ten months passed and then the month of Kartika came. On the Amavasya day, Acyuta and the other Vaishnavas of Rohini began to worship Lord Krishna. Many Vaishnavas and brahmins came to his house and the atmosphere was filled with the sound of name of Hari. Lamps illuminated the whole city and it appeared that the night was over and the dawn began. At this time the mother began to have delivery pains and hearing of this Acyuta called for many brahmins, astrologers and tantrikas. They began to recite from the Vedas and the sankirtana was also begun. The child, Rasika, was born in the Saka era of 1512 on the Pratipada time of the moon.
It was a Sunday, the first day of the solar eclipse and the third half of a dark night. All the good planets met at that time. Rasikendra took his birth to remove the darkness of ignorance from Utkala and all the devotees there, knowing the reason for his birth, became mad with joy. Everyone began to bless the baby and even the gods of heaven showered flowers. There were recitations from the Vedas, Gita, Mahabharata, Puranas and Ramayana. One could also hear the sounds of the name of Hari, conches and different musical instruments. Both the abode of the gods and human beings were happy and they came to visit the new born child. After his birth, like an ordinary child, Rasika began to cry and the effulgence of his body lit the whole house. The child had a moon-like face with a broad forehead, a firmly shaped nose, eyebrows like the canons of Kama, eyes like the leaves of a lotus, finely shaped ears and a head full of black curly hair. His lips were like the red vimva fruit, his shoulders could be compared to those of an elephant, his hands were like the stalk of a lotus, both palms were decorated with kunda flower-like nails and his broad chest charmed the three worlds. His navel was very beautiful and the three fold curve of his waist was like a lion. His knees and waist were beautifully shaped like a banana tree. The signs of his lotus feet were very charming, his nails shone brightly and his complexion was bright blue and black. Seeing the beauty of her son Bhavani was overcome and could understand that a great soul had appeared from her womb. The father, Acyuta, called for many Vedic brahmanas and offered them tila, rice, cows and gold. He also gave many gifts to the Vaishnavas and they were greatly satisfied to see his humility. They told the parents that they prayed for a long life for their son, that he would be a favourite devotee of Krishna, preach love and devotion for the Lord and thereby deliver all the inhabitants of Utkala. Then the ladies performed some rituals for the well-being of the baby. The neighbours told Bhavani, "You are a fortunate woman and you have gained this child as a result of your austerities. He will enlighten his family and bring joy to everyone. Let Krishna protect him always." When it became time to perform an auspicious ceremony for his child Acyuta first sent his servants to various places to collect the necessary items. The relatives came for the event along with their full families. The Vedic brahmins were invited and ksatriyas, vaisyas and sudras and others all gathered at the house of Acyuta. Ladies decorated with various ornaments performed many rituals according to the laws of scriptures. Using six pots for the worship of goddess Sasthi they all prayed to the goddess for a long time for the child.
Then Bhavani sat in the assembly with her son in her lap and the women blessed the baby with grass, rice and turmeric. Someone said, "Let Mahesh and Parvati grant eighty years of life to this boy." Someone said, "Let goddess Sasthi give this boy a long life." Then someone said, "Let Lord Krishna protect him." and as soon as the name of Lord Krishna entered the ears of the baby he began to cry emotionally.
Hearing his crying, the mother offered her breast milk but it could not relieve the child. Just as Prahlada had heard about Krishna from Narada while still in his mother's womb similarly Rasikendra had heard about Krishna from Dayala dasi's talks to his mother while he was still in the womb. After birth whenever anyone uttered the name of Krishna tears would come in his eyes. He would absorb himself in meditation on Bhagavata and the words of guru, sadhu and Krishna became his life and soul. Before the assembly of ladies departed from their home Bhavani distributed celestial garlands to everyone and fed them all with the utmost hospitality. She offered betel nuts and camphor to them and satisfied them in every respect. After bidding farewell to the ladies Bhavani touched sindhura on her head then put collyrium in the child's eyes. All the guests were charmed to see the wonderful qualities of the child and continued praising him as they journeyed home. They were certain that he must be a companion of Krishna. Acyuta satisfied the brahmins present by giving them various gifts such as betel leaves, camphor, ornaments and gold coins. He then collected dust from their feet and touched it to the head of Rasika. Then he called all the Vaishnavas of the city who came to his home playing musical instruments of various kinds. Acyuta offered them various kinds of sweetmeats and they began to sing the glories of Krishna. As soon as the sound of their song entered the ears of the child he began to cry and would not remain in his mothers lap. The devotees were very happy to see this pastime and could understand that he could certainly rescue Utkala. From his birth the palace of Acyuta became Vaikuntha and all the citizens were eager to visit and see the child. The wealth of Acyuta doubled and all the eight types of accomplishments resided with Rasika.
The fourth wave deals with the birth of Rasika. Taking the feet of Syamananda as my ornaments this son of Rasamaya narrates Rasika-mangala.
All glories to Syamananda and all glories to Rasikendra candra. Please favour me and allow me to sing your unlimited glories. Gradually it came time for the boys name giving ceremony and brahmins and astrologers were invited to name to child. The Vedic brahmins came there and began to sing songs from the Sama Veda while a square was drawn on the floor and the child's chart made. The gopas spent the night absorbed in singing and dancing to the accompaniment of different musical instruments. Then the Vedic brahmins began to offer oblations according to the rules of the Vedas and at that time the women performed many auspicious rituals. After bathing, Bhavani, dressed in celestial garments, worshiped the senior persons present there. She then bathed her son and sat with the child on her lap to await the decision of the brahmins. On the basis of his horoscope the astrologers selected Rasika as a fitting name for the child and the Vedic brahmins all gave their blessings to the child. They told Acyuta, "Oh fortunate man, this child will be the life of this world and he will distribute love and devotion to all without caring for caste and creed. Even if we had hundreds of mouths we could not fully describe the glories of your son. By his mercy he will enable everyone to take part in Harinama." Hearing the words of the brahmins Acyuta folded his hands respectfully and requested them, "Oh respectful brahmins, I have a request for you. Let Shri Rasika be his name according to the horoscope but I wish to call him Murari. Please bless him by this name and grant that he may be a scholar of all scriptures." After granting Acyuta this request the brahmins departed along with the other guests. All were greatly satisfied by the respect given by Acyuta.
In due course the boy began to crawl on the floor breaking whatever would come into his hands. By breaking earthen pots he mixed milk, curd and ghee together and he would often eat something only to scatter a portion of it everywhere. He was not afraid of fire or snakes and thorns and stones were all the same to him as were friends and enemies. He would smear dust all over his body as though it were aguru and sandalwood oil. He displayed sweet laughter, the beauty of his face could defeat the moon and his eyes were extremely large. As he moved the ornaments round his waist made a sweet jingling sound. Round his neck he wore jewelled garlands, his wrists were decorated with golden bangles, a golden tiger's nail hung round his neck and his legs were decorated with jewelled ornaments making him look just like an image of Gopala. Whenever he would fall his parents would immediately pick him up and dust his body. His mother would wash him with scented water and then offer him milk to drink. When it came time for the child to sleep Bhavani would take the child in her lap and begin singing the name of Krishna. Hearing the name of the Lord the child would invariably become perturbed with emotion and begin to tremble and shed tears. Seeing her child cry she would offer the child her breast and begin to sing louder hoping to pacify him but he would only cry louder. Then she would call for a few girls to sing with her and this would bring more tears of lamentation into Rasika's eyes. Whenever the waves of love of Krishna overflow, a devotee always loves to float in that wave with greater emotion. In trying to pacify the child each of the women would take him in their laps, but without success. One tied a protective band round his head and another cited hymns but still the child cried. Then suddenly, remembering Lord Krishna, he became calm, exchanged glances with those around him and began to suck his mothers breast. The delighted and relieved mother then offered sweets to the brahmins and they would give their blessings to the child. In this way Rasika passed his childhood sports. Making the feet of Syamananda my ornament this son of Rasamaya has written this wave
All glories to Syamananda, the abode of all good qualities. All glories to Rasikacandra and all glories to all their companions and followers for by their grace one can quickly attain shelter at the lotus feet of Krishna. The son of Acyuta would crawl around the home playing and touching whatever he could reach. If someone asked him to bring shoes or wooden sandals or even pots, jars or brooms he would immediately try to carry them and never disappointed anyone. Everyone was pleased to see the efforts of the small child and one after another they would place the child in their laps.
Gradually it came time for the child's `anna prasana' ceremony and on the advice of his neighbours Acyuta began to arrange for it. He invited the Vedic brahmins and all his friends and relatives and requested their permission saying, "If you all permit me then I shall offer rice to the mouth of my son." Permission was gladly given and Acyuta ordered the decoration of his house. The women made a painting on the floor and placed a silver conch along with rice and cow dung in the middle of it. They also arranged for a table on which they put a pen, tala leaf and the Shrimad-Bhagavatam. After performing the scheduled rituals they decorated Rasika with many ornaments and smeared his body with perfume and sandal. Faint lines of cow urine on his forehead made him look very charming and he shone with a beauty like the moon. Rasika's father sat with his son in his lap and surrounded by friends and brahmins the Vedic hymns were recited and oblations began. At the same time musical instruments were played and the ladies made auspicious sounds indicating their well-being.
Varieties of foodstuffs were placed on a dish and after placing Rasika in front of the dish the women told him, "Oh dear Rasika, bring the thing which you like the most." Hearing their words he looked at the Shrimad-Bhagavatam with tears in his eyes. He eagerly took hold of the book and embraced it tightly to his chest. He began to cry and ecstatic symptoms appeared in his body. All the spectators were astonished to see this and one remarked, "This boy is not an ordinary person. He must be a favourite devotee of Krishna." Someone else said, "He will rescue all beings." Another said, "He has incarnated as a creeper of religion." Yet another said, "Acyuta is a most fortunate father." With the completion of the rice-giving ceremony the brahmins were respectfully dismissed and Acyuta distributed many varieties of palatable foodstuffs to his friends and relatives. At the same time Bhavani with the utmost care, fed the ladies and offered them sandal, kumkum, betel leaves and camphor. All of the ladies took turns to hold the child in their lap and to glorify the good fortune of Bhavani.
After this the son of Acyuta began to wander throughout the village and with the company of many friends they would perform sankirtana. Observing this tendency in the boy all the devotees of Krishna became mad with joy. Rasika would write the name of Krishna on the bodies of his playmates and persuade them to dance. On hearing the name of Krishna he would faint, his voice would choke and tears would roll down his moonlike face. Sometimes he would become overcome with emotion and fall down on the ground while at other times he would cry out loudly. He would take dust from the feet of any person who would utter the name of Krishna. Seeing this behaviour in the boy astonished the local people and the ladies once again told Acyuta, "Your son is not an ordinary person." Acyuta simply replied, "Let him live long by your grace." In this way he appealed to everyone to bless his son.
Rasika made it his habit to respect all types of religion and would offer respect to Tulasi, Asvattha, Dhatri, Vaishnava and brahmin. He was unable to remain calm and quiet at home but would roam through the village in love of Krishna. Knowing that he was the son of a King the local people would invite him into their homes and offer him palatable foodstuffs. Rasika would then place everything with Tulasi and offer them to Krishna. Then he and his playmates would circumambulate Tulasi while dancing and clapping their hands. Next he would distribute the prasada to the brahmins who did not hesitate to accept. Then he would give prasada to his friends and also take a little for himself. In this way he loved to wander through the village and the people became happy by seeing him. He was fond of a place where saintly persons were staying and he loved to go to those places which were connected with the worship of Krishna. If he found any temple of Krishna or any place where there was a Tulasi tree, in an unkempt condition then he would clean it by smearing a mixture of cow-dung, soil and water on them and made them as clean as Vaikuntha. In this way the son of Acyuta taught the people to keep the sanctity of religion. Seeing the behaviour of the boy the people felt ashamed of themselves and from then on they followed the boys example. Rasika would also bring water and grass with his own hands, for he loved to serve the cows. If, in his travels, he met any brahmin or Vaishnava he would worship their feet. He always talked sweetly to others and by his good nature people would were attracted to take him in their lap and question him. They would ask him, "Oh, my dear, from where have you learned all this? How have you learned to keep religious principles and to serve brahmins and Vaishnavas? How have you learned to keep the holy places clean?" They would often tell Acyuta, "Your son is not an ordinary child. His body is decorated with auspicious signs and whenever he hears the name of Krishna he begins to cry." On hearing the name Krishna, with tears in his eyes, Rasika would go and sit on the lap of Acyuta. His mother would then cleanse his body and offer him some nice foodstuffs. In this way he passed his boyhood. Taking the lotus feet of Syamananda as my ornament, the son of Rasamaya narrates Rasika-mangala
All glory to Syamananda the lord of the life of Rasika. Please favour me so that I can sing of your glory. Gradually it came time to pierce the ears of Rasika. On an auspicious date a water pot was installed in the centre of the freshly painted floor. The brahmanas began to offer oblations and a barber was called. After bathing his son Acyuta dressed him in new garments, placed him on a wooden chair and put sweets into his hand. Kirtana was begun and they sang of Krishna. "Try to understand my mind, my friend, Syamanagara comes to my mind all day and night."
Hearing this line in the Samai the son of Acyuta turned numb. The eight signs of a devotee appeared in his body and tears rolled down from his eyes. At first he fainted and then on regaining his consciousness he began to take the name of Krishna. When he stopped chanting and the people round saw that his eyes were closed, they were all afraid. The brahmins stopped offering oblations, the musicians stopped playing and those close to Rasika tried to nurse him. When the sound of the Samai ceased Rasika came back to normal consciousness and sat up. Seeing the child recover everyone loudly called out the name of Hari.
After this the barber neatly pierced the ears of the child while the brahmins once again began to offered oblations. In the meantime Dayala dasi Thakurani, who was famous as a devotee of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, came to see the child. She lived in a nearby temple and loved to serve Acyuta. She first offered her blessings to Acyuta but when she saw the child she lost all consciousness and fell down. The other ladies sprayed water on her face and told one another, "She has lost consciousness because she is old and she came here through the heat of the sun." However she told them, "You don't know the glory of this child. I saw the form of Gopala in him and this is the reason why I fainted. He is not a child at all but the life of this world. He will rescue all beings and preach love and devotion in Utkala. He will preserve the religious principles and serve the Tulasi, asvattha, brahmins and Vaishnavas. He will be kind to the needy and the poor. By his bodily signs we can see he is a confidential devotee of Krishna. Never neglect his words and do not dishonour him. He will preach the sixty-four kinds of devotional and he has appeared in this world to rescue all beings. I have no power to sing his countless qualities but I can assure you Bhavani is certainly fortunate in having this son for he can tell past, present and future." Then she told Acyuta, "Your son will enlighten your family." Hearing this Acyuta humbly bowed and told her, "Please bless my boy with a long life and that he will remain your servant."
Thakurani gladly blessed the boy and chanted Krishna's name to protect him, Rasika was very happy to hear the name of Krishna and put his arms around her neck and began to cry. The delighted Dayala dasi took the child in her bosom and poured the name of Krishna into his ears. After reciting the Hare Krishna mantra she explained to Acyuta, "I have recited a mantra which can not be explained by anyone else. Krishna will be the Lord of his life and together they will preach love and devotion and deliver the people of Utkala. Do not think if him as an ordinary child for he is a favourite devotee of Lord Krishna." After saying all this she bid farewell to Acyuta and Bhavani and they both took the dust from her feet and presented her with many gifts.
Rasika did not spend time in games like other children.Instead he would meditate on the maha-mantra refusing to accept any of his mothers foodstuffs until he could complete one lac of names. This became his daily practice. The people of the town told Acyuta, "Surely your boy has received the favour of Krishna, otherwise how could a mere boy show such intelligence. He is always meditating on the name of Krishna and he doesn't care for eating or sleeping." In the company of his friends Rasika would re-enact the pastimes of Lord Krishna. They would dress themselves in different garments so that someone would be Brahma and someone Lord Narayana lying on the Ksirodakasayi ocean. Sometimes one would dress as Devaki, another as Vasudeva and another as Kamsa who would put them in prison. Sometimes one would dress as Nanda Maharaja and another as Yasoda while others would be cowherd boys or calves and some would be Putana or Trnavarta or Sakatasura. Rasika enjoyed playing in this way and he would meditate on Bhagavata. Those who observed his behaviour could see this child was not ordinary. Sometimes he would enact the pastimes of Krishna eating dirt or His being tied up with the mortar and then breaking the Yamalarjuna trees. On other occasions they would perform the killing of Vatsasura. Rasika liked to watch his friends perform all these pastimes just as though they were Krishna with His friends. He would see them pretend to be Aghasura while another would be Krishna and kill the demon. One boy would then be Brahma and kidnap the other boys or else he would be Brahma praying to Lord Krishna. Then one would be Dhenukasura and another as Krishna would kill him. They loved to enact the pastimes of Kaliyadamana where some of the boys would be the wives of the Naga and offer Krishna nice prayers. They were able to describe the glory of Krishna's flute and they could describe the Autumn season. There were other plays such as installing a deity of Katyayani and then one of the boys would play Krishna and steal the dresses of the others who were the gopis. Sometimes they became the yajnic patnis and the cowherd boys would beg rice from them on behalf of Krishna. When they played the sport of lifting Govardhana Hill and the attempt of Indra to kidnap Suravi it caused Rasika to faint in ecstasy and he rolled on the ground in a trance. Seeing the behaviour of the boy the local panditas thought to themselves, "He must be a favourite devotee. Whatever we know of the theories of Bhagavata are nothing in comparison to this child who has absorbed himself in the pastimes of Krishna." Other pastimes they enjoyed included the kidnapping of Nanda Maharaja by Varuna and Krishna's going to rescue him. When they arranged a Rasamandala for Radha and Krishna to dance with all the gopis they enacted Krishna's disappearance from their midst and the gopi's search for Him. Seeing the disappearance of Krishna, Rasika Murari fell under the eight types of ecstatic emotions. Sometimes they would sing from Gopi-gita or they would kill the Arista demon or the Kesi demon or else it would be the subduing of Sankhacudha (Sudarsana). They played Krishna brought by Akrura on the order of Kamsa and His killing of the washerman and distributing his clothes. Then Krishna meeting Kubja and Sudama the florist and the killing the elephant Kuvalayapida, the wrestling match against such giants as Canura and Mustika and the killing of Kamsa. In this way Rasika Sekara saw the embodiment of Bhagavata and continuously absorbed himself in the Lord's pastimes.
Making the feet of Syamananda my ornament, this son of Rasamaya gladly narrates this Rasika-mangala.
The Eight Wave
All glory to Syamananda, the son of Durika, and the life of Rasikadeva. Rasika passed his childhood performing all the pastimes of Krishna as described in the Bhagavatam. He was so totally absorbed in playing like this with his friends that he did not care to eat or sleep. This became a cause of concern to his father and one day Acyuta took his child in his arms and told him, "This playing with your friends is stopping you from eating so from tomorrow I want you to remain in the house and play instead of going out." To this the child replied, "I will not go out to play so long as I am allowed to listen to Bhagavata." This reply made his father very happy and he immediately called for some brahmins to recite. He told them of the desire of his son and asked that they recite it daily. In this way they began to recite and Rasika would sit on the lap of his father and listen to all the pastimes of the Lord which he had previouly performed with his young friends. He listened to the killing of Kamsa and the re-establishment of Ugrasena on the throne of Mathura. He heard how Krishna studied in gurukula and to the visit of Uddhava to Vraja and the lamentation of the gopis in their separation from Krishna. Hearing these descriptions Rasika rolled down from his father's lap unconscious. Seeing the emotion in the body of his son Acyuta recited the names of the Lord and prayed to Him to protect his child. Listening to Bhagavata became the regular habit of Rasika and some times he would hear of Krishna's visit to the house of Kubja and to Akrura's house. Then he heard of the going of Akrura to Hastinapura then the complaining of the two wives of Kamsa, Asti and Prapti, to their father Jarasandha. He heard of the valour of Jarasandha, the King of Magdha, in his fighting Lord Krishna seventeen times. He heard how Krishna left Madhupura and established His Kingdom at Dvaraka. He heard of Mucukunda burning Kalayavana to ashes and the apparent fleeing of Krishna and Balarama from Jarasandha, Krishna's fight with the kings for the hand of Rukmini, the kidnapping of Pradyumna and the killing of Samvara in order to rescue him, the episode of the Syamantaka jewel, Krishna's fight with Jambavan, His marriage with Jambavati Thakurani, His marriage with Satyabhama and the killing of Satadhanu by Krishna at Samagrama. He also listened to Krishna's visit to Indraprastha to see the Pandavas, His marriage with Kalindi, the daughter of Maharaja Nagnajit, the imprisonment of Saptasanda, the killing of Narakasura and the freeing of the sixteen thousand one hundred princesses he held in prison, and the capturing of a parijata tree by winning over the King of heaven. He listened to the household affairs of Krishna and Rukmini, the names of the sons of each of His eight wives, the marriages of Aniruddha and Pradyumna, the fight with the King of Kalinga, the release of the Nrga Raja, Lord Balarama's visit to Vraja to meet His friends, His dragging of the Yamuna by His plough, the killing of Pundarika? (Pundrauka), Sudarsana's burning of Varanasi, the imprisonment of the son of Krishna on Hastinapura and Lord Balarama's visit to that place to release him; Narada,s going to Dvaraka to see Krishna's actvities in each of His palaces. He also heard of Jarasandha's imprisonment of ninety-six thousand Kings and their prayers to Krishna for release, Narada's return to Dvaraka, the visit to Hastinapura of Krishna and Uddhava; the killing of Jarasandha and the release of the imprisoned kings; the Rajasuya yajna, the killing of Sisupala, the killing of Salya and Dantavakra; Lord Balarama's pilgrimmage including His visit to Naimisaranya and His killing of Suta Pauranika; the visit of Sudama to Dvaraka and his release from poverty; the Kings of the Yadus going to Kuruksetra and Krishna's meeting with Nanda Maharaja and the inhabitants of Vrndavana; Draupadi's talks with the eight wives of Krishna; the kidnapping of Subhadra, Lord Krishna's visit to Videha, the visit of Bhrgu to Dvaraka and Krishna's acceptance of the mark of Shrivatsa. Then he heard of the promise of Arjuna to the brahmana whose wife lost her children and descriptions of the family members of Krishna and His sons. This was how Rasika loved to absorb himself in hearing Bhagavata. After hearing all twelve cantos he heard those Puranas that depicted the glory of Krishna and while listening he would shed tears. One of Rasika's favourite pastimes was to gather soil and with his own hands mould it to the form of the Lord, Shri Krishna. He would then decorate the form in various ways and offer many items in worship while his young friends would sing and dance. When Rasika would go out for pilgrimmage his friends would have to bring him home because he knew nothing but the pastimes of the Lord and always floated in pools of tears remembering Him. Observing the behaviour of the child the inhabitants of his town were astonished and discussed with one another, "This child has a bodily effulgence like Krishna and he has induced his father to listen to Bhagavata because the child will hear nothing else. He must be an associate of the Supreme Lord, Shri Krishna. Oh Lord Krishna, protect this boy always because one day he will surely deliver all beings." In this way the local people would bless him. Just by looking at his moonlike face one would forget his own identity and his mild and sweet smile charmed everyone. The boyhood pastimes are thus described although they can only be mentioned briefly for they are without limit. This eastern part of Rasika-mangala is very sweet to hear for it will help one to conquer over this Kali-yuga. Making the feet of Syamananda my ornament, this son of Rasamaya narrates Rasika-mangala.
The Ninth Wave
All glory to the son of Acyuta. In due course it became time for Rasika to begin study and with the help of brahmin astrologers a suitable date was selected. After first worshipping Sarasvati a great astrologer named Vasudeva helped Rasika write the name of Shri Krishna. Then Rasika, holding the pencil with his own beautiful hands, wrote "Siddhirastu", and then offered his obeisances at the feet of his teacher. He also offered obeisances at the feet of all the brahmins, his parents and to all his seniors. Everyone was happy to bless the child and they all prayed to Shri Krishna to allow him to prosper like Brhaspati. Thus the son of Acyuta began his studies in the beautiful school of Vasudeva. He was able to learn all the letters at a glance and his reading which sounded like a nectar to the ears could melt stone. He could master all the difficult lessons in a very short time and within a few days he began to study grammar. Acyuta appointed a professor for this purpose and Rasika began to study Mimamsa mandana. After hearing just once from his teacher Rasika would analyse the Dhatur. His teachers declared, "He has learnt in a few days what took us one or two years of study. He is not an ordinary child. He must be a confidential devotee of Shri Krishna. He will defeat the Saivites and the Saktas." After this Rasika began to study under the great grammar scholar Vaidya Balabhadra Sena, then under Anukula Cakravarti and Kavicandra and then Shri Yadunandana Cakravarti. Shri Rasika began to study under five teachers at a time. After hearing the sutra only once he was able to analyse it. He began to love poetry, or dramatical grammar and comments on grammar. He was able to establish a theory by himself and then he could contradict that theory by his own words. Hundreds of students studied with him but not one was equal to him. Being graced by the favour of the husband of Sarasvati, Lord Krishna, Rasika was capable of establishing even those theories that were previously contradicted by others. The teachers were astonished and thought, "How is it possible that a mere child can analyse theories which took us years to learn?" In this way they wondered about the genius of the child.
As the Zamindar of Mallabhuma, Acyuta often visited many countries and would take his favourite child with him on tour. At these times Rasika would meet and study under the professors of these places and he soon became a scholar in six scriptures. He studied with sincerity for he knew that he must rescue the fallen souls. While remaining absorbed in love for Krishna he got hold of such philosphies as Tarka, Sankya, Sankhyayana, Mimamsa, the theories of Patanjali and many others and soon mastered them all. He was as brilliant as Brhaspati and his presence gratified the earth. After completing his study of these scriptures he took up a study of Bhagavata under a fortunate professor named Jagannatha Misra sho had written a Bhagavata in poetry. The son of Acyuta began to analyse each and every verse and began to create his own comments. Indeed whenever he sat for study of Bhagavata it seemed as if he were Sukadeva analysing the slokas in devotion and his efforts could be compared to those of Vyasa. His explanation of the slokas could melt dry wood and brought great pleasure to his teacher who would affectionately embrace him. Misra would often remark, "Glory to that mother and father who are so fortunate to have a son like Suka and Vyasa. His explanations of the Bhagavata have opened my own eyes." Once after saying this Misra took Rasika in his arms and embraced him. At once Misra fell under the spell of the eight kinds of emotion and began to cry. He thought, "His touch has awoken love and devotion in me. He must be a favourite devotee of Lord Krishna and he can enable me to attain Lord Krishna. Simply by observing him all my sins will be removed." Everyone who heard this began to sing the glory of Rasika. They said, "His words give pleasure to the ears. We had studied Bhagavata for a long time but had failed to know the essence of the theories in this book. This boy has now opened our eyes. In order to teach the world the inner meanings of Bhagavata a servant of Krishna has taken birth as the son of Acyuta." In this way everyone blessed Rasika. After completing his studies under Misra, Rasika studied under Hari Duve who was a fortunate devotee of Shri Krishna. He observed the love and devotion which Rasika had for Lord Krishna and the two became absorbed together in scriptures. Rasika was happy to have such a teacher and both of them forgot about eating and sleeping being so absorbed in their study. When Duve would hear the analysis of Rasika he would become emotional and shed tears. He would take him in his arms and exclaim, "Glory to the parents. Glory to this earth. A child such as Brhaspati, Vyasa, Suka or Narada has now taken birth. We have never seen such an intelligent child and in the sphere of knowledge he can be compared to Brhaspati or Suka. He is a scholar of all six philosophical systems as well as Vedanta, the eighteen Puranas and Shri Bhagavad-gita. He is an ocean of love of Krishna and when he explains something it is as if Krishna Himself is speaking through him. He can refute the interpretations of other scholars and establish his own explanations which will be in accordance with those of Narada, Suka and Vyasa. We are indeed fortunate to have this boy among us. In the future he will deliver all beings." Duve was a great soul who could tell past, present and future so he blessed Rasika in this way and also informed all others about the childs power. In this way Rasika spent his time with Duve.
Just by listening to Rasika-mangala one can shake off the bondage of this material world. Oh, devotees of Krishna, listen to Rasika-mangala and very soon you will attain the feet of Rasika. Making the feet of Syamananda my ornament this son of Rasamaya narrates Rasika-mangala.
The Tenth Wave
All glories to Syamananda the son of Durika and all glories to Rasikendra, the son of Bhavani. One day Rasika was reading the Tenth Canto of the Bhagavata with Duve. When they came to the chapter describing Krishna's going to Mathura and the feelings of separation felt by the gopis at that time Rasika fainted and fell to the ground. The eight kinds of emotions broke out in his body and as he thought how the gopis could not bear to live without Krishna he cried out again and again. He cried out, "Where has Krishna the lord of my life gone?" His crying brought others to see the cause of the disturbance. They said, "This boy's father is the lord of Mallabhuma and he has no want for anything in his life. Why is he crying? He must have been disturbed by some rogue." No one could understand why the child gave up bathing, eating and studying and kept crying all the time. Everyone was sympathetic towards him but they were unable to comfort him. He could not stay at home but would wander like one insane. Once while chanting the name of Krishna he roamed into the forest not caring for wild animals. In the midst of the jungle he fell on the ground and with a heavy sigh cried out, "Oh my Lord, why are You so cruel to Her. Why have You left this poor gopi who has forsaken Her husband and family. She did not consider the good name of Her family and remains with You like Your shadow. She suffers from hunger and thirst but does not take either food or water. You have made Her homeless but She thinks of You constantly, even in Her sleep. How can You expect the cowherd boys and the cows to live without You, how will mother Yasoda or Nanda Maharaja maintaim their lives. The river Yamuna is crying for You. Even the trees, creepers, birds and animals are crying for You. Why have You become so cruel to them." After uttering all this Rasika began to roll on the ground and cry. Without even caring for food or water he passed seven days in this condition continually roaming in the forest. When his father returned home from his duties and heard that his son had entered the forest at first he fell to the ground crying out the name of his child. Then he ordered everyone to search for him. By his order hundreds of people went to the forest serching for the child. Eventually Rasika was found still lying on the ground, his body glowing brightly and his moonlike face beautiful to look at and his fine curly hair floating on the ground. Seeing his child in this condition pierced the heart of Acyuta and he took Rasika on his lap. Immediately Rasika opened his eyes and seeing his father returned to normal consciousness. The two then returned home together but still Rasika could not check his crying and tears continued to roll down his moonlike face. Seeing in him this condition some said, "This must be due to some wicked person." Then another said, "He is suffering from wind trouble." They continued to talk in different ways but the boy did not answer them. He kept his head down and continued crying unable to look up. Acyuta seeing the distress of his son politely turned to Duve and said, "My son has given up eating and drinking. How can he continue to live?" Duve said, "Don't worry. He is mad in love for Krishna. Your son is a great soul. He will deliver the world." Then Duve, combining all the theories of the scriptures, made a Bhagavatamrta and began to recite it to Rasika. He said, "After three months separation from Vraja Krishna returned there because He can never be separated from His eternal abode. This fact is known only by those who have attained love and devotion for Krishna and have taken complete shelter of Him. This the confidential meaning of Bhagavatam which is known only by these great souls." On hearing that Krishna has returned to Vraja, Rasika was relieved and sat up chanting the name of the Lord. Seeing his son cured Acyuta said to Duve, "You have given life back to my son. I can never repay you for this." Acyuta was so delighted that he began to eulogise to Duve and offered him worship and all types of sweets. He gifted fine clothes and money to Duve and requested him as follows, "Please don't let Rasika out of your sight for a second. It will be a great relief for me to give my son to you." In this way Acyuta bowed to Duve and felt happy seeing the moonlike face of his child.
Day by day Rasika grew into a great scholar whom no one could argue with. The panditas were no match for him. Those who listened to his nectarine words forgot the pains of their existence. He spent his days enjoying his studies and clarifying the scriptures in such a way that no one would dare to refute his theories. He would create slokas which no one could find any error in and sometimes while sitting alone he would cry for Krishna because his body was always ruled by emotion. Day by day his love for Krishna grew, his childhood and boyhood being spent in this state of mind. In his privacy he would study manuscripts, sometimes he would write songs of new slokas, sometimes he would debate on scriptures with other scholars and sometimes he would absorb himself in worship and meditation on the Lord.
By the time of his entering into youthhood he exhibited a Kandarpa winning beauty which made him charming to behold. However, household affairs were very dull things to him and he was apt to roam in the forest full with love of Krishna. Acyuta being anxious about his apathetic son began to search for a suitable bride for him. Accidentally he came to hear of the Zamindar of Hijalimandala whose name was Balabhadra and who was the brother of Sadasiva. His uncle, named Bibhisana Mahapatra, was known to kive in kingly opulence but there was no one as wealthy and fortunate as Balabhadra dasa. Apart from his fabulous treasury the number of cows and stock of rice in his possession could not be counted. His daughter, being favoured by the goddess Lakshmi, was unparalleled throughout the world in beauty and qualities. Her disposition was very sweet and her words were pleasing. Her lotus like face could put Manasifa to shame. Her whole body was decorated with numerous ornaments and she wore nothing but silk dresses. Her name was Iccha devi and it was to be her who could stand by the side of Rasika. She had been in the habit of worshipping Lord Krishna since her childhood. Along with her friends she would form a Deity of the Lord and after worshipping Him she would pray to Him, "Please give me a husband like You, to whom I am a maidservant birth after birth."
Now listen to the marriage episode of the daughter of Balabhadra. Balabhadra received an order from the King of his country that he should pay taxes and also deliver many valuable goods to him. When he went to deliver payment Balabhadra was short by lacs of rupees and the King, the Patsaha of Medinapura, had him imprisoned. The messenger of Balabhadra reported this to Acyuta and Acyuta at once went to meet the King. Acyuta agreed to settle the debt and the King released Balabhadra. Acyuta then brought Balabhadra to his home and served him with the utmost respect offering him sweets, varieties of foodstuffs and celestial clothes. While he was eating betel leaf Rasika came before him. He looked very beautiful with curly locks of hair, a face like the moon, a beautifully constructed nose between two large lotus eyes, ornaments hanging from his ears, his teeth resembled darimva fruit shining like lightning and he was mildly smiling. His reddish lips vibrated words which resembled the sound of a cuckoo and his talking was a shower of nectar. Golden beads hung around his neck as well as a garland of rubies and pearls. His long hands were decorated with golden bangles and his navel was very beautifully shaped. His waist could defeat a lion and his thighs were like two pillars of emeralds. His lotus feet were painted red and in his hand he held a manuscript. A cloth was folded over his shoulder and with his elephant like gait he appeared magnificent. He took his seat by the side of Balabhadra who was stunned to see the beauty of Rasika and fainted, falling to the ground. When he recovered Balabhadra told the others, "This boy must be Narayana Himself. I have never seen such beauty in this world. Whose son is he?" Hearing that he was the son of Acyuta, Balabhadra addressed Acyuta, "Please listen to my request. If you permit I will give my daughter to your son. My daughter, Iccha devi, has no equal in this world in regards to both beauty and good qualities. Your son is the best husband for her and she will be the best wife for your son. It is all the arrangement of providence for them. I have been captivated by the beauty of your son who is the real wealth of life in this world."
Acyuta gladly agreed to the marriage proposal and with due respect they parted. Now I shall describe the marriage episode of Rasika. Listen to Rasika-mangala because it describes the lord of life for all devotees of Krishna. Making the lotus feet of Syamananda my ornament, this son of Rasamaya narrates Rasika-mangala.
The Eleventh Wave
All glory to the son of Acyuta who is an abode of all good qualities the wealth of life in this world and the deliverer of all beings. After receiving the proposal from Balabhadra, Acyuta discussed is with his relatives. He told them, "Shri Balabhadra has proposed giving his beautiful daughter as a wife for Rasika. He has been charmed by the character of Rasika and considerd his daughter a suitable wife for him. Balabhadra is the lord of Hijli and has enormous wealth. It is by the grace of providence that I could meet him. Let us prepare for the marriage and arrange all the necessary items very carefully." By the order of Acyuta arrangements were begun and ornaments, clothes and other commodities were collected. Balabhadra had his whole house cleaned thoroughly and told his men, "The marriage of my daughter to the son of Acyuta has been arranged by the will of providence. The bridegroom possesses a beauty which is unequalled in the three worlds, indeed he looks like Narayana Himself. He possesses saintly qualities and his knowledge and learning can be compared to Brhaspati. I have secured such a husband for my daughter only due to the good fortune of my family or else as by result of some austerities. Iccha devi is certainly fortunate, for she will have a husband like Lord Narayana."
Unfortunately before the marriage could be performed Balabhadra died. After a suitable time had elapsed his elder brother, Sadasiva, in order to keep the promise of his deceased brother, called for astrologers to fix a date for the marriage and then announced it to all. He had his men gather all the necessary commodities such as curd, milk, ghee, molasses, rice and sweets of many different varieties. On the auspicious day his house was decorated with paintings and a pandal was erected. Sadasiva requested a few brahmins and a few of his relatives to bring the bridegroom with great care and attention. He instructed them to first take permission from Acyuta and politely inform him that they would take his son to the home of the bride. Acyuta invited all his friends and relatives and they came to his house on horses or in palanquins.
O friends, please listen to the episode of Rasika's marriage. Making the feet of Syamananda my ornament, the son of Rasamaya narrates Rasika-mangala.
The Twelfth Wave
All glory to Syamananda the friend of the needy and all glory to Rasikananda, the ocean of mercy. At the proper time, after having obtained the permission of Acyuta, the relatives started the journey to Hijli taking Rasika with them. They were accompanied by the friends and relatives of Acyuta and there were Vedic brahmins and even barbers and washermen to accompany them. Travelling on horses and in palanquins they carried various gifts as well as food, clothes and ornaments. Many musical instruments were played such as the dhola, mrdanga and kartels. Rasikendra boarded a beautifully decorated palanquin and the sight of the procession brought hundreds of people running to witness it. Seeing Rasika the people would say, "Which village is this man from? We have never seen such good looks as he possesses, indeed he looks like Lord Narayana." When the procession entered Hijli, a messenger reported it to Sadasiva and he ordered his friends to go forward to welcome the bridegroom. Seeing the beauty of Rasika they began to praise the good fortune of Iccha devi. As they entered the city the residents, having heard of Rasika, came running eagerly just to catch a glimpse of him. They praised Balabhadra and his daughter saying that they must have performed many austerities to deserve such a husband. Sadasiva was delighted to received the groom and arranged his accomodation in a comfortable house. He sent various items to that house making sure that all the guests were comfortable and then called for the astrologers. The house of Sadasiva was decorated with many paintings and curtains of gems and jewels were hanging from the doors and windows. All the pillars were decorated with flags and a golden water pot was placed in the middle of a circular painting. The place looked as beautiful as Vaikuntha. Vedic brahmins sat around the circle while hundreds of relatives and friends took their seats in the pandal. The ascetics and saints were given seats on diases and the aristocrats sat on rugs and carpets. The house was decorated throughout with lamps which made the city appear as though it were a moonlit night. Different fireworks were thrown in the sky such as Hawai, Candravana, Bhumicampa, etc. The pandal was decorated with white candles which made the night appear as though it were day. Flower garlands were hung everywhere and the beauty of the pandal cannot be fully described. The women began to perform rituals while, following the rules of the Vedas, Sadasiva performed adhivasa and other rituals. Sadasiva sat near the circled spot with his friends and offered everyone betel leaves and camphor. When the astrologers announced that it was the right time to bring the bridegroom Sadasiva ordered his men and with the accompaniment of musicians they entered the house where Rasika was staying. The companions of Rasika began hasty attempts to decorate him with ornaments. They painted his forehead with kumkum and sandal, arranged his hair and placed flower garlands round his neck. Then a golden crown was placed on his head. The crown was made of numerous gems and jewels and it enhanced the beauty of his moonlike face which was lit by the jewels hanging from the crown on both sides of his face. His eyes were decorated with a border of collyrium, his nose resembled a beautiful tila flower while his teeth, which enhanced the beauty of his face were like finely shaped Darinbha flowers. His lips were reddened with the juice of betel leaves, his eyebrows were like the carions (vultures?) of Karma, his ears were bedecked with jewelled ornaments, a garland of gold hung round his elephant like neck and there was a beautiful locket in the centre of his chest. His long arms were decorated with armlets and bangles. His slim waist had a silk scarf wrapped round it on top of his yellow silk dhoti and he carried a chaddar over one shoulder. The nails of his soft feet were painted red and he wore wooden sandals. The effulgence of his blackish body illuminated the three worlds. Decorated in this way he boarded the palanquin and started for the bride's house. At that moment many musicians began playing their instruments, poets recited fine verses, brahmins chanted Vedic hymns while others read from Ramayana, the Mahabharata and the Puranas. In other places sankirtana was being performed, in other places the gopas were displaying their skills with sticks, girls were dancing, the local citizens were singing patriotic songs and there was wrestling and horse-riding going on in other areas. All the experts in music and instruments came from different cities to participate in the marriage ceremony. All the inhabitants of Hajali came to witness the event and the market places, streets and houses were all full of people hoping to see Rasika. The crowd was so great that even a mustard seed could not be thrown on the ground. Everyone said they had never seen such a marriage. When the palanquin reached the pandal the Vedic brahmins began the offering of oblations. Rasika stepped down and stood under the pandal to receive the worship of brahmins. They blessed him and prayed to him to deliver the three worlds by giving devotion to Krishna.
The beauty of Rasika charmed everyone present such as the kings along with their entourages, the brahmins, children, aged persons and women. They all wondered where the bridegroom had come from. Seeing his beautiful smile, the gesture of his eyes (brows) and his long arms they all praised Rasika saying they had never seen such beauty before. They also praised the good fortune of the daughter of Balabhadra in being the wife of such an extraordinary personality. Indeed they thronged round Rasika just like bees round a flower. His moonlike face soothed their eyes and the spectators thought Rasika must be an incarnation of Narayana and the place Vaikuntha. The groom was directed to a silk carpeted seat on a dias while others took their seats in the pandal along with Sadasiva and his friends and relatives. Now it was time to begin the rituals for the marriage and the brahmins started to offer oblations while musicians played, women made sounds vibrating their tongues and blowing conchshells and people sang songs. Everything was performed according to the scriptures. With the order from the brahmins to bring the bride, the relatives entered into the house and ordered the women present to complete the decoration. They smeared kumkum and sandal on the golden complexion of the bride and arranged her hair with a giant jewel on the top of her head. Her moonlike face put the full moon to shame, her eyebrows could defeat the canors of Kama and her lips could win over vandhuli flowers. Her eyes were decorated with collyrium and she had a pearl nose ring through her tila flower like nose. Her teeth were like kunda flowers, a beauty spot decorated her cheek and she wore jewelled and gold garlands round her neck. Her hands and wrists were decorated with ornaments. Her breasts, navel and waist were beautifully shaped and her golden silk dress enhanced her beauty further. Golden bangles decorated her ankles and the nails of her feet shone like millions of moons. After they completed her decoration, Iccha devi, the daughter of Balabhadra and eternal consort of Rasika, took flower garlands and personally decorated all of her friends.
In the company of her relatives she was brought to the marriage arena. While the brahmins offered oblations according to the rules of the Vedas, Sadasiva, observing all the rituals offered the bride to Rasika. She was placed at the side of Rasika just like Lakshmi sits at the side of Lord Narayana. At that time Sadasiva offered many valuable items as dowry. A few days later the Asta-mangala ceremony was held and then Rasika started for his home along with his bride. Rasika was absorbed in spiritual trance and tears flowed from his eyes in love of Krishna. Seeing his son return home with his wife Acyuta felt happy and invited all his friends to his home satisfying them with palatable food and distributing clothes, ornaments and rice among them.
One who hears the marriage episode of Rasika can get free from the bondage of the material world. O friends, listen to Rasika-mangala because the son of Acyuta is the friend of all. Listen to his lilamrta for by giving up all unnecessary things you will be delivered to Krishna. Making the feet of Syamananda my ornament, this son of Rasamaya narrates Rasika-mangala.
The Thirteenth Wave
May Syamananda Prabhu, the joy of this world bestow his favour on me and allow me to sing the glories of Rasika. After his marriage Rasika Murari settled down and passed his time discussing Bhagavatam and topics concerning Lord Krishna. Absorbed in chanting of Hari-nama his eyes shed a constant flow of tears and he would roll on the ground, his body experiencing the eight kinds of emotions. He would cry out, "Krishna my wealth, He is my mother, my Lord, my guardian, my son, my friend and my protector. Without Krishna I have no one. I have dedicated myself to Him." His only concern was the pastimes of Krishna and he neglected even eating and sleeping. He was unable to sit at home but loved to wander through the forests where he would sit alone until his relatives found him and brought him home. There was nothing but Krishna in his mind and he grew more and more apathetic to household affairs. Understanding the thinking of his son, Acyuta told Rasika, "Listen my dear Rasika, remain at home. I shall provide you with whatever you need." Hearing this Rasika replied, "O father, hear me. This family and wealth is false and Krishna is the only truth, His pastimes are the only truth; sankirtana is the only truth, Krishna nama is the only truth, guru and devotion to the guru are the only truth. Listen father for this is the essence of the Vedas. Dedicate yourself to Krishna for He is the life of all and worship of Him is the verdict of the scriptures. Brahma, Narada, Siva, Suka, Indra and other gods know only Krishna and nothing else." These words can help others to also accept Krishna as the only truth. With these words, the son of Rasamaya takes the feet of Syamananda as his only wealth.
The Fourteenth Wave
Glory to Syamananada, the friend of the world, well-wisher of all and an ocean of mercy. Please favour me O son of Durika, and allow me to sing the glory of Rasika. Now I shall describe the meeting of Syamananda and Rasika and how they decided to deliver all beings. Acyuta possessed houses in many different countries and while on tour he and his son, Rasika, would stay in them. Ghanta Sila was one such place where they stayed along with their men. Nearby was a spot named Jagannatha Mandapa where Rasika would spend all his time studying Bhagavatam and shedding tears in love of Krishna. There was also a beautiful grove on the banks of Shrivamarekha where the Pandavas had once halted for some time. Rasika Sekhara not only visited that grove but many other places which were all places of pilgrimmage. When he roamed through the forest sometimes he would chant japa, or other times he would perform sankirtana. He also enjoyed having prasadam distribution and he would feed many Vaishnavas. The place where the Pandavas had stayed was a beautiful spot surrounded by deep forest and rivers with sweet water. At that place he sat for meditation on Lord Krishna. One moment he would sweat, the next moment he would tremble and the next, cry. At this time he had a vision of a divine personality which had a blackish complexion but which glowed with an effulgence illuminating the entire forest. He stood before Rasika in a threefold posture holding a flute to His lips. His magnificent black curly hair was decorated with a peacock feather and he wore a yellow cloth and many ornaments. The Kaustubha jewel hung in the middle of His jewelled garland and he wore pearl earrings and footbells. Just at the time of twilight Lord Krishna came before His servant Rasika and spoke words to sooth the ears. He said, "Listen to Me Rasika, your advisor is Syamananda Raya. He is My beloved devotee and he will deliver all beings by giving love and devotion. By serving his feet you will attain My feet. I will be in your heart always." As these words entered the ears of Rasika Murari, he opened his eyes and saw the lord of his life, Shri Krishna, before him. Seeing that Supreme Personality whose beauty can defeat millions of Cupids, Rasika, fell to the ground with a delighted heart but when he raised his head he could no longer see the Lord. He began to cry and roll on the ground his body covered with dust. He called out, "Oh the Lord of my life, Shri Krishna, where have You gone. You have allowed my sinful eyes to see Your beauty but now You have left me in a helpless condition for I do not know where You have concealed Yourself. How can I continue to live." It is not possible to fully describe the emotion of Rasika for his lamentation could melt stone. Rasika lost all control of his senses and continued crying throughout the night. There were numerous wild animals in that place but by the grace of Lord Krishna, none came near to Rasika. At last his relatives who were anxiously searching for him came to that place. They quickly helped him to sit up and carefully wiped his face, arranged his hair and dusted his body before taking him home. That beautiful form which Rasika had witnessed, however, remained in his heart. Although he did not tell anyone he grew anxious to meet Syamananda and meditated upon him and although his wife and friends sat around him with different pleasing items he did not look at them at all. His only thought was for Krishna and Syamananda. He gave up reading manuscripts and forgot about eating, drinking or sleeping. He could not stay at home but roamed in the forests.
In course of time, Syamananda, due to the bond of love, came to that place to favour Rasika. Now I shall describe the incident of his coming to Utkala from Vraja. Some may ask what is my capacity to describe the favour of Syamananda to Rasika? In this regard I can say that I served these two Prabhus from my childhood and I have personally seen and heard their pastimes. I shall describe them in brief and please don't see any fault in it because I am guided by Rasika. Making the feet of Syamananda his ornament, the son of Rasamaya has written this.
The Fifteenth Wave
Glory to Syamananda, the joy of this world, at whose feet Rasikendracandra was like a bee for he knew nothing but the meditation of Syamananda. Now I shall describe the visit of Syamananda to Utkala for it was by the order of Govinda that he left Vraja and came to find Rasika.
One day while Syamananda was absorbed in chanting the holy name Madana gopala, Shri Govinda, appeared before him and said, "Listen Syamananda, Rasika Murari is My favourite devotee. Go to Utkala and after you initiate him together you should preach love and devotion to Me and deliver all the inhabitants of Utkala. The residents of Vraja are My favourite devotees but I request you to go to Utkala to favour Rasika." With a shiver Syamananda fell to the ground and being unable to see the Lord anymore he began to lament. Then he remembered the words of Hrdayananda and he thought to himself, "The Lord has confirmed the previous instruction given to me but how can I leave Vraja to go to Utkala. If I don't go, however, then I will be neglecting the order of Shri Krishna. I must go and see this great devotee who is living there." He continued to think in this way but was reluctant to go out of Vraja. It was then that Madana gopala appeared to Shri Jiva Goswami and told him, "Listen My dear Jiva, tell Syamananda to go to Utkala. Rasika Murari is a favourite devotee of Mine and he is living there. Syamananda has to go there and deliver the inhabitants of Utkala with the help of Rasika." The order was given three times and the Lord also said, "He should serve the Vrajavasis who are now residing in Utkala. They are very unhappy there because of the predominance of sinful activities. Syamananda and Rasika, by removing the darkness of sin will deliver Utkala." Having received the order from Lord Krishna, Jiva told everything to Syamananda. He said, "Listen Syamananda, Krishna has ordered you to go to Utkala. You should enlist Rasika Murari in your group and with his help you should deliver the inhabitants of Utkala. Rasika is a favourite devotee of Krishna." After hearing all this from Jiva, Syamananda became more confident and told Jiva, "I must go to Utkala and meet Rasika Murari. I must see him as a favourite of the Lord."
Thus Syamananda took leave of Jiva Goswami, Haripriya dasa and other Vaishnava mahajanas of the asrama and started on his journey. He took with him three of his disciples, and one his brothers named Thakura Prasada dasa, a boy named Syamadasa and a few religious scripts. After leaving Vraja they came to Agra and settled in a place there. When the Moghul general saw that some Vaishnavas had settled in the city he became furious. He could not determine the purpose of their staying in the city and took them either to be thieves or saints. Thus he had his soldiers arrest them and put them into prison. That night when the general lay dowm to rest someone entered into his room and picked up the bed along with the general and then thrashed it to the ground. He then sat on the chest of the general and told him, "You are a rogue. You have taken My favourite devotees and put them into prison. I will kill you and all your family." In fear of his life the general cried out in pain for his life air was at the edge of his throat. Hearing his cries his relatives came running to him and found him vomiting blood and sighing heavily. They put water in his mouth and then inquired what had happened to him. He told them, "I have put five Vrajavasis into prison. They are not ordinary persons but favourite devotees of Krishna. You must go and release them and bring them to me." A few guards went to the prison and freed them. When Syamananda met that general he fell on Syamananda's feet saying, "Forgive me, I did not know that you are favourite devotees of Krishna and because of this I have suffered." The Yavana then tried to please Syamananda in various ways and being satisfied Syamananda told him, "I beg you to always render service to the Vaishnavas." The Yavana felt relief and from that day he began to serve saintly persons and kept Syamananda and his party in the city for a few months serving them very sincerely. From there Syamananda went to Varanasi and Prayaga and stayed there for some time before entering Rohini city. When he inquired as to the whereabouts of Rasika he was told that he was now in Ghantasila. Syamananda went to that place and when the two met they floated in waves of love of Krishna. I shall describe the meeting later. Making the feet of Syamananda my ornament, the son of Rasamaya narrates Rasika-mangala.
The Sixteenth Wave
Glory to Syamananda, the life of the universe. Please favour me so that I may be able to sing the glories of both you and Rasika. Now listen how Syamananda met Rasika. Rasika was living happily in Ghantasila, absorbed in meditation on Syamananda. One day, in the court of the King, a gathering was held to hear recitation of Bhagavata. The royal court was full of great brahmin scholars and Rasika would question them about the inner meaning of the theories of Bhagavata. When Syamananda came to this place his beautiful golden figure with long arms, smiling face, beautiful eyes and elephant like gait caught the attention of everyone. The King quickly rose from his seat, offered him obeisances and very respectfully gave him a seat. On seeing Syamananda, Rasika became full of ecstatic love. Syamananda took his seat and began to scan the assembly. Although neither of them knew what the other looked like, as soon as they saw each other they knew their identity. When the Bhagavatam reading was concluded the King returned to his chambers and one by one the brahmins dispersed until only Rasika remained sitting there. Seeing Syamananda sitting in the group of his disciples Rasika went to him and offered obeisances. Syamananda embraced him and asked the others, "What is his name? Whose son is he? He has handsome features and a beautiful smile." After hearing that he was the son of Acyuta, the King of Mallabhuma and that he was known as Murari, Syamananda allowed him to sit by his side and asked him about his family. Then he told him, "I have come from Vraja by the order of Lord Krishna and the residents of Vraja. You are an intimate devotee of Lord Krishna and I have come here to meet you." After some brief talk Rasika took his leave and returned to his house.
Syamananda remained in this place for months. He would spend time in solitary places discussing topics of Lord Krishna in the company of Rasika. They discussed the Mimamsa of Patanjali and the Vedas as well as Sankhya and Bhagavata. When Syamananda heard Rasika state that the only essence of scripture is love and devotion to Krishna he was greatly happy and embraced him. They would discuss in private and no one else knew what they were discussing. It was at this time that Syamananda taught all the methods of worship to Rasika. He told Rasika, "According to scriptures all of the Lord's incarnations such as Matsya, Kurma, Varaha, Shri Nrsimha, Parasurama, Vamana, Buddha and Kalki are worshipped individually by the devotees. The method of worship given by Chaitanya Mahaprabhu is something different and it was discussed before by Narada after he was questioned by saintly persons about it. Those who listened to Narada began to worship in Madhurya bhava recognising Shri Krishna, the Lord of Vrndavana as the only God. This fact is confirmed by the srutis.
On the banks of the Yamuna stands Vrndavana, the most beautiful place in millions of brahmandas. The city is decorated with numerous jewels and the women are like Lakshmi while the men are like Vishnu. The rasamandali is under the kalpa-vrksa and in this area stands a jewelled throne which shines like millions of suns. Seated on the jewelled throne is Lord Krishna with His consort Shrimati Radharani on His left side. He is seen in a three-fold posture, His beautiful curly hair decorated with peacock feathers and jewelled garlands around His neck. His beautiful forehead is painted and the hairs on His body look just like a line of bees. His eyebrows resemble the cannons of Kama and His eyes are like lotus petals. A pearl nose ring decorates His tila flower like nose. He speaks sweet words and smiles magnificently, His face resembling the Autumn moon while His earrings swing brightly from side to side. His mesmerising beauty charms everyone in the universe. A jewelled garland with the Kaustubha gem in the centre hangs round His neck. His breast bears the mark of Shrivatsa's feet. His hands are decorated with bangles and other ornaments. Wearing a yellow dress His waist looks like that of a lion, His legs are like two emerald pillars which charm the Vraja girls and His two lotus feet are very soft. He wears footbells round His ankles and the glow of His nails can put millions of moons to shame. The marks of Dvaja, Padma, Vajra and Chatrankusa can be seen under His right foot and the marks of Kumbha, Sankha, Mina and Indradhanu can be seen under His left foot. Vanamali is seen in this manner with beautiful Radha on His left side. The throne is surrounded by eight favourite sakhis who remain in the service of Radha and Krishna playing different musical instruments. This is called madhura bhajana of Radha Krishna. Follow this method sincerely."
Piece by piece Syamananda revealed the storehouse of love of Krishna to Rasika. He said, "The males are like females to the son of Nanda. If you worship Krishna in this way you can quickly attain Him. If Krishna favours someone then they can understand this loving relationship and without this love no one can attain Krishna. Krishna, the son of Nanda Maharaja, can be conquered by love. By this love sometimes a gopi offers Him her chewed remnants and sometimes He will carry a gopi on His shoulders. All the scriptures declare that God is conquered by such love and devotion. If you dedicate yourself to Him, the life of the universe and son of Nanda Maharaja, then you will soon attain shelter at His lotus feet." After hearing all this from Syamananda Rasika became ecstatic in love of God and began to shed tears. He fell at the lotus feet of Syamananda and his tears washed his feet. Syamananda gave him a loving embrace and blessed him saying, "Krishna will ever remain in your heart. You are the embodiment of the loving image of Krishna. Along with you I shall deliver all beings." Thus he accepted Rasika.
This is episode of the meeting of Rasika with Syamananda. Rasika-mangala is very sweet to hear for it will remove all Kali kala. Making the feet of Syamananda my ornament, the son of Rasamaya narrates Rasika-mangala. Here ends the Eastern Part describing the union of Rasika and Syamananda.