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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > All Scriptures By Acharyas > Verses > Gaudiya Kanthahara > Naam-tattva

Nama-tattva

 

 

The Supreme Lord is the Root of all Religion

 

17.1

dharma-mulam hi bhagavan sarva-vedamayo harih

smrtam ca tad-vidam rajan yena catma prasidati

 

          The Supreme Person is the root of all dharma, the essence of all the Vedas, and the meditation of all those great authorities who know the truth about the Supreme Lord, and whose opinions becomes scripture. This is evidence, O King, and by accepting this religious principle, everyone will attain the highest satisfaction of the soul, mind, and body. (Bhag. 7.11.7)

 

Krishna is the Only Way

 

17.2

tapastu tapaih prapatastu parvata-datantu tirthani pathastu cagaman

yajastu yagairvivadantu vadair harim vina naiva mrtim taranti

 

          You may perform mountains of austerities, visit many holy places, study all the Vedas, and perform all kinds of Vedic sacrifices, but without devotion to Krishna, none of these things can save you from death. (Bhavartha Dipika 10.87.27)

 

Chanting the Holy Name is the Eternal and Highest Dharma for all Souls

 

17.3

etavan eva loke 'smin pumsam dharmah parah smrtah

bhakti-yogo bhagavati tan-nama-grahanadibhih

 

          It is recognized that the highest religious principle in human society is devotional service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, beginning with the chanting of the holy name of the Lord, nama-saakirtana. (Bhag. 6.3.22)

 

The Holy Name is the Essence of the Srutis

 

17.4

nikhila-sruti-mauli rama-mala-dyuti nirajita-padapaokajanta

ayi mukta-kulair upasyamanam paritas tvam harinama samsrayami

 

          O holy name, the tips of the toes of your lotus feet are eternally worshiped by the glowing effulgence of the Upanisads, the crest jewels of the Vedas. You are eternally adored and chanted by great liberated souls like Narada and Sukadeva Gosvami. O Harinama, clearing myself of all offenses, I take complete shelter of You. (Shrila Rupa Gosvami, Krishna-namastakam 1)

 

The Constitutional Nature of the Holy Name

 

17.5

nama cintamanih krishnas chaitanya-rasa-vigrahah

purnah-suddho nitya-mukto'bhinnatvan nama naminoh

 

          The holy name of Krishna is a transcendental wish fulfilling gem it bestows all spiritual benedictions, for it is Krishna Himself. It is the personification of divine mellow, the fountainhead of all pleasure. The holy name of Krishna is eternally liberated and spiritual. This is because the name of Krishna and Krishna Himself are nondifferent. (Shri Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu, Purva-Vibhagaga 2.233)

 

17.6

ekam eva sac-cid-ananda-rasadi-rupam tattvam dvidha-virbhutam

 

          The Supreme Absolute Truth is one reality whose form is eternal, fully cognizant, and ecstatic. That Absolute reality who is the origin of all rasa appears in two forms, as Krishna Himself and as the holy name of Krishna. These two forms are nondifferent manifestations of the same eternal reality Krishna. (Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu, Purva-Vibhaga 2.233, Jiva Gosvami's Durgama-sargamani commentary)

 

The Vedas Sing the Glories of the Holy Name

 

17.7

om asya jananto nama cid-viviktan mahante visno sumatim bhajamahe

om tat sat

 

          This mantra means, "O Lord Vishnu, Your name is conscious (cit) and therefore self-effulgent (mahas) and so even one with partial knowledge of the eternal nature of Your name, and incomplete understanding of the glory of proper chanting, can attain knowledge of You merely by repeating the syllables, because You, who are known by Om, are self-existent (sat)." Thus it is seen that the name liberates a person from fear and envy even if alluded to. (Bhagavata-Sandarbha 47)

 

17.7a

he vinro te tava nama cita cit-svarupam ata eva mahau sva-prakasa-rupam tasmat asya namna a inadapi janantau ha tu samyak

uccmra-mahatmayadi puruskarera.

tathapi vivaktan bruvarau kevalam tad-aksarabhyasa matram kurvarmu sumantia tad-vinayam vidyam bhajamahe prapnuyau.

Ata eva bhayadvenmdau shri mhrteu aphurter iva smnketya-dmvapasya muktidatvam sruyate.

 

          O Vishnu! Your holy name is of the nature of divine consciousness it is transcendental reality par-excellence. It is a manifestation of Your own divine form, even if someone utters the holy name without knowing the names complete glories. To utter the name without being fully aware of its glories means namabhasa, or uttering the syllables of the holy name which are only the outer reflection. Even in such a positon we shall attain divine knowledge of the Lord, by such worship. Because this line contains the word oa it indicates that the use of the word "sat" means svata-siddau. Therefore the divine form manifests upon one's having uttered the name (even when there is nanabhasa because of smnketya and so forth), and thus one attains liberation from the postion of fear and envy. (Bhagavata Sandarbha 4)

 

The Glories of the Holy Name in the Smrti-sastras

 

17.8

vede ramayane caiva purane bharate tatha

adavante ca madhye ca harih sarvatrah giyate

 

          Throughout the Vedas, the Ramayara, the Puranas, and the Mahabharata, from beginning to end, only the glories of the Supreme Lord Hari are sung. (Hari-vaasa)

 

The Holy Name Grants All Perfection in Kali-yuga

 

17.9

kaler dosa-nidhe rajann asti hy eko mahan gunah

kirtanad eva krishnasya mukta-sangah param vrajet

 

          My dear King, although Kali-yuga is an ocean of faults, there is still one good quality about this age: Simply by chanting the Hare Krishna maha-mantra, one can become free from material bondage and be promoted to the transcendental kingdom. (Bhag. 12.3.51)

 

17.10

krte yad dhyayato visnum tretayam yajato makhaih

dvapare paricaryayam kalau tad dhari-kirtanat

 

          What was attained in Satya-yuga through meditation, in Treta-yuga through sacrifice, and in Dvapara-yuga through Deity worship is realized in Kali-yuga through hari-kirtana. (Bhag. 12.3.52)

17.11

dhyayan krte yajan yajnais-tretayam dvapare 'rcayan

yadapnoti tadapnoti kalau saokirtya kesavam

 

          Whatever results was attained in Satya-yuga by meditation, in Treta-yuga by yajna, and in Dvapara-yuga by arcara, can only be attained in the Kali-yuga by hari-nama-kirtana, chanting the glories of Krishna, who is known as Kenava. (Padma Purana, Uttara-khanda, 42nd Adhyaya)

 

17.12

kali-kale nama-rupe krishna-avatara

nama haite haya sarva-jagat-nistara

nama vinu kali-kale nahi ara dharma

sarva-mantra-sara nama, ei sastra-marma

 

          In the age of Kali, Krishna advents Himself in the form of the holy name. By the holy name, the entire universe is delivered. There is no other dharma in the age of Kali. The holy name of Krishna is the essence of all mantras and the purport of all revealed scriptures. (Cc. Adi 17.22 and 7.74)

 

Shridhara Svami on Glories of the Holy Name

 

17.13

amhah samhara dakhilam sakrdudayadeva sakala-lokasya

taraniriva timira-jaladhim jayati jagan-mangalam harer nama

 

          Let the all-auspicious glories of the holy name, which benedicts the entire universe, be victorious. Just as when the sun rises, it dispels the ocean of darkness, in the same way, when the holy name has only slightly risen within one's heart, all one's sins are completely destroyed. (Padyavali 16, Shridhara Svami)

 

17.14

jnanamasti tulitam ca tulayam prema naiva tulitam tu tulayam

siddhir eva tulitatra tulayam krishna-nama tulitam na tulayam

 

          Knowledge and yogic perfection can be compared to one another, but prema and krishna-nama have no comparison to anything within this world. They cannot be weighed on the scales of mundane consideration. (Padyavali 15, Shridhara Svami)

 

Rupa Gosvami on the Glories of the Name

 

17.15

akrstih krta-cetasam sumahatam-muccatanam camhasam

acandalamamukaloka-sulabho vasyas ca moksashriyah

no diksam na ca daksinam na ca purascaryam managiksate

mantro'yam rasana sprg eva phalati shri krishna namatmakah

 

          The holy name of Krishna is an attractive feature for many saintly, liberal people. It is the annihilator of all sinful reactions and is so powerful that save for the dumb who cannot chant it, it is readily, available to everyone, including the lowest type of man, the candala. The holy name of Krishna is controller of the opulence of liberation, and it is identical with Shri Krishna. Simply by touching the holy name with one's tongue, immediate effects are produced. Chanting the holy name does not depend on initiation, pious activities, or the purascarya regulative principles generally observed before initiation. The holy name does not wait for all these activities. It is self-sufficient. (Padyavali 29, Rupa Gosvami)

 

The Efficacy of Gayatri and the Holy Name

 

17.16

krishna-mantra haite habe samsara-mocana

krishna-nama haite pabe krsnera carana

 

          Through the gayatri mantra one attains liberation from material existence. Through the holy name one attains the lotus feet of Krishna. (Cc. Adi 7.73)

 

The Glories of Hari-katha

 

17.17

srutam-apy-aupanisadam dure hari-kathamrtat

yan na santi dravac-citta-kampasru-pulakadayah

 

          The Upanisads have ascertained nirvisena brahma as the subject of the sruti, whereas they only take a distant view of hari-katha. This is because through hearing and chanting about Brahman, one's heart is not moved, tears do not pour from the eyes, and the bodily hairs do not stand on end. (Padyavali 39)

 

The Glories of the Holy Name Surpasses that of Impersonal Brahman

 

17.18

yad brahma-saksat-krti-nisthayapi vinasamayati vina na bhogaih

apaiti nama-sphuranena tatte prarabhda-karmeti virauti vedah

 

          O holy name! The seeds from which sin sprouts within the heart are not burned to ashes by realization of Brahman or by constant meditation on eternal consciousness. But, O holy name, as soon as You appear on the tongue of a sincere chanter, all the karmic seeds of sin are burned to ashes. Thus all sinful reactions, past, present and future are finished. This is proclaimed by the Vedas. (Krishna-namastakam, Rupa Gosvami 4)

Kirtana of the Holy Name is Best of All

 

17.19

aghaccit-smaranam visnor-bahvayasena sadhyate

austhaspandana-matrena kirtanatu tato varam

 

          The remembrance of Vishnu certainly cuts sin to pieces, but it is very difficult to attain perfection through remembering Vishnu. Only after great effort is such remembrance possible. However, simply by moving the lips, there is the kirtana of the holy name of Vishnu, and therefore kirtana is the topmost process of devotional service. (Hari-bhakti-vilasa, 11.453)

 

The Holy Name Surpasses Worship and Meditation

 

17.20

 

jayati jayati namananda-rupam murarer

viramita-nija-dharma-dhyana-pujadi-yatnam

kathamapi sakrdattam muktidam pranina yat

param-amrtam-ekam jivanam bhusanam me

 

          All glories, all glories to the all-blissful holy name of Shri Krishna, which causes the devotee to give up all conventional religious duties, meditation, and worship. When somehow or other uttered even once by a living entity the holy name awards him liberation. The holy name of Krishna is the highest nectar in my life and my only treasure. (Bnhad-Bhagavatmmnta 1.1.9)

 

17.21

yena janma sataih purvam vasudevah sanarcitah

tan-mukhe hari-namani sada tisthanti bharata

 

          O descendant of Bharata, one who has previously worshiped Lord Vasudeva in hundreds of lifetimes can now chant the holy name eternally. (Hari-bhakti-vilasa 11.454)

 

The Holy Name is not Regulated by Time, Place, and Circumstance

 

17.22 and 23

na desa niyamo rajan na kala niyamas tatha

vidyate natra sandeho visnor-namanu-kirtane

kalo'sti dane yajne ca snane kalo' sti saj jape

visnu-saokirtane kalo nastyatra prthivitale

 

          O king, there are no rules governing the time and place wherein the holy name of Vishnu can be chanted. Of this there can be no doubt. Charity and sacrifice are governed by various rules regarding time and place, as are the taking of one's bath and the silent uttering of different mantras. But the holy name of Vishnu can be chanted in sankirtana at any time in any place on earth. (Hari-bhakti-vilasa 11.412, 413)

 

17.24

na desa-niyamas tasmin na kala-niyamas-tatha

nocchisthadau nisedho 'sti shri harer-namni lubdhaka

 

          O hunter, there are no restrictions on when or where the holy name of Shri Hari may be chanted and no prohibitions regarding the uncleanness of the mouth from which the holy name comes forth. (Hari-bhakti-vilasa 11.408)

 

17.25

etavatalam agha-nirharanaya pumsam

saokirtanam bhagavato guna-karma-namnam

vikrusya putram aghavan yad ajamilo 'pi

narayaneti mriyamana iyaya muktim

 

          It should be understood that one is easily relieved from all sinful reactions by chanting the holy name of the Lord and chanting of His qualities and activities. This is the only process recommended for relief from sinful reactions. Even if one chants the holy name of the Lord with improper pronunciation, he gets relief from material bondage if he chants without offenses. Ajamila, for example, was extremely sinful, but while dying he merely chanted the holy name, and although calling his son, he achieved complete liberation because he remembered the name of Narayana. (Bhag. 6.3.24)

 

The Bhagavatam on Loud Kirtana

 

17.26

 

namany anantasya hata-trapah pathan

guhyani bhadrani krtani ca smaran

gam paryatams tusta-mana gata-sprhah

kalam pratiksan vimado vimatsarah

 

          [Narada Muni said] Thus I loudly chanted the holy name of Krishna in kirtana, not caring for any social formalities. Such chanting and remembering of the holy name benedicts everyone. In this way, I traveled across the earth, fully satisfied, humble, and non-envious. (Bhag. 1.6.26)

 

Loud Kirtana is the Best

 

17.27

japato hari namani sthane sata-gunadhikah

atmanan ca punaty-uccair-japan srotrn-punati ca

 

          Compared to that person who is attached to chanting japa, the person who performs loud chanting of the holy name of Shri Hari is one hundred times better. This is because the person who chants japa purifies himself, whereas the person who chants the holy name loudly in kirtana purifies himself, all those who are with him, and everyone else who hear the holy vibration. (Shri Naradiya, Prahlada-vakya)

 

Loud Kirtana Benefits the Chanter of the Holy Name and Those Who Hear it

 

17.28

pasu-paksi-kita-adi balite na pare

sunile se harinama ta'ra saba tare

japile se krishna-nama apani se tare

ucca-saokirtane para-upakara kare

ata eva ucca kari' kirtana karile

sata-guna phala haya sarva-sastre bole

 

          The animals, birds, and insects cannot chant the holy name, but by hearing the holy name chanted they can benefit. Chanting the japa of the holy name of Krishna purifies oneself, but the loud sankirtana of the holy name of Krishna benefits all living beings. Therefore, loudly chant the holy name of Krishna in kirtana, and you will get one hundred times the benefit of chanting japa. This is the verdict of all the sastras. (Cb. Adi 11.275-277)

 

Mahaprabhu Loudly Chanted the Holy Name

 

17.29

hare krsnety uccyaih sphurita-rasano namaganana-

krta-granthi sreni-subhaga-kati-sutrojjvalakarah

visalakso dirghargala-yugala-kheloncita-bhujah

sa chaitanyah kim me punarapi drsoryasyati padam

 

          Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu loudly chants the Hare Krishna mantra, which dance upon His tongue, as His radiant lotus hand counts the name by fingering the beads on the beautiful knotted counting string tied to His waist. His beautiful lotus eyes stretch to His ears and His arms reach to His knees. When will Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu again appear before my eyes? (Chaitanyanthakam 5, Rupa Gosvami)

 

The Opinion of Baladeva on the Form of the Maha-mantra

 

17.30

hare krsneti mantra-pratika-grahanam.

Sodasa-namatmana dvatrimsa-daksarena mantrenoccair-uccaritena sphurita krta-nrtya rasana jihva yasya sah.

 

          When the sixteen names and thirty-two syllables of the Hare Krishna mantra are loudly vibrated, Krishna Himself dances on ones tongue. (Baladeva Vidyabhnara, Stava-malm-vibhunara-bhanya)

 

Hare Krishna is the Maha-mantra for the Age of Kali

 

17.31-37

hare krishna hare krishna krishna krishna hare hare

hare rama hare rama rama rama hare hare

sodasaitani namani dvatrimsad varnakani hi

kalau yuge maha-mantrah sammato jivatarane

varjayitva tu namaitad durjanaih parikalpitam

chandobaddham susiddhanta viruddham nabhyaset padam

tarakam brahma-namaitad brahmana gurunadina

kalisantaranadyasu sruti-svadhigatam hareh

praptam shri brahma-sisyena shri naradena dhimata

namaitad-uttamam srauta-paramparyena brahmanah

utsrjyaitan-maha-mantram ye tvanyat kaepitam padam

mahanameti gayanti te sastra-guru langhanah

tattva-virodha-saoprktam tadrsam daurjanam matam

sravatha pariharyam syadatma-hitarthina sada

hare krishna hare krishna krishna krishna hare hare

hare rama hare rama rama rama hare hare

 

          Hare krishna hare krishna krishna krishna hare hare, hare rama hare rama rama rama hare hare: This sixteen-name, thirty-two syllable mantra is the maha-mantra in the age of Kali by which all living beings can be delivered. One should never abandon chanting this maha-mantra and take to other so-called purificatory processes which are practiced by rascals, or engage in chanting other metrical compositions of the name of Krishna that are against the pure conclusions of the scriptures, or are filled with rasmbhasa. About this divinely spiritual maha-mantra, which delivers one from material existence, the original guru, Lord Brahma, has said, kali-santararadi srutite, "The srutis have declared this mantra to be the best means of deliverance in the age of Kali". Having all heard this from Brahma, the sons and disciples of Brahma, beginning with Narada, all accepted the Hare Krishna maha-mantra and, having meditated on it, attained perfection. (Ananta-Samhita)

 

 

The Upanisads on the Hare Krishna Maha-mantra

 

17.38-39

hare krishna hare krishna krishna krishna hare hare

hare rama hare rama rama rama hare hare

iti sodasakam namnam kali-kalmasa-nasanam

natah parataropayah sarva-vedesu drsyate

 

          The sixteen names of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra: hare krishna hare krishna krishna krishna hare hare, hare rama hare rama rama rama hare hare destroy all the inauspiciousness of the age of Kali. This is the conclusion of all the Vedas. (Kali-santarara Upanisad)

 

The Puranas on the Hare Krishna Maha-mantra

 

17.40

hare krishna hare krishna krishna krishna hare hare

ratanti halaya vapi te krtartha na samsayah

 

          Hare krishna hare krishna krishna krishna hare hare: Whoever chants this mantra, even neglectfully, will attain the supreme goal of life. Of this there is no doubt. (Agni-Purana)

 

Chanting the Holy Name Qualifies One for Deliverance

 

17.41

madhura-madhuram-etan-mangalam mangalanam

sakala-nigamavalli-sat-phalam cit-svarupam

sakrdapi parigitam sraddhaya helaya va

bhrguvara naramatram tarayet krishna nama

 

          The holy name of Krishna is the sweetest of the sweet and the most auspicious of all auspicious things. It is the self-effulgent and beautiful fruit of the Vedic desire tree. O best of the Bhrgus, when the holy name is uttered once without offense, either attentively or in attentively, it immediately ensures the deliverance of all human beings from the bondage of illusion. (Hari-bhakti-vilasa 11.234, Skanda Purana)

 

The Holy Name is to be Chanted in the Stage of Practice and in Perfection

 

17.42

etan nirvidyamananam icchatam akuto-bhayam

yoginam nrpa nirnitam harer namanukirtanam

 

          O King, constant chanting of the holy name of the Lord after the way of the great authorities is the doubtless and fearless way of success for all, including those who are free from all material desires, those who are desirous of all material enjoyment, and those who are self-satisfied by dint of transcendental knowledge. (Bhag. 2.1.11)

Things Unfavorable for Nama-kirtana

 

17.43

janmaisvarya-sruta-shribhir edhamana-madah puman

naivarhaty abhidhatum vai tvam akincana-gocaram

 

          Those who are intoxicated by false ego on account of their good birth, wealth, learning, and beauty, cannot cry out Your name with sincere feeling. Only those who are materially bereft can chant Your name in purity. (Bhag. 1.8.26)

 

The Characteristics of the Principal and Secondary Name

 

17.44

namnamakari bahudha nija-sarva-saktis

tatrapita niyamitah smarane na kalah

etadrsi tava krpa bhagavan mamapi

durdaivam idrsam ihajani nanuragah

 

          O my Lord, Your holy name alone can render all benediction to the living beings, and thus You have hundreds and millions of names like Krishna and Govinda. In these transcendental names You have invested all Your transcendental energies and there are no hard and fast rules for chanting Your name. O my Lord, out of kindness, You enable us to easily approach You by chanting Your holy names, but I am so unfortunate that I have no attraction for them. (Siksmntaka 2)

 

The Secondary Names of God and Their Symptoms

 

17.45

jada krtira paricaye nama yata

prakrtir gune gauna vedera sammata

srsti kartta paramatma brahma sthiti kara

jagat samharta pata yajnesvara hara

 

          According to the Vedas, the secondary or inferior names of the Supreme Lord, Shri Krishna are those which are in connection with the material world. For example: "God," "Creator of the Universe," "Paramatma," "Supersoul," "Brahman," " Maintainer of the Universe," "Destroyer of the Universe," "Savior," and "Lord of Sacrifice," and "He who takes away," are some inferior or secondary names of Godhead. (Hari-nama-cintmmari)

 

Fruits of the Principal and Secondary Names of the Lord

 

17.46

ei rupa nama, karma-jnana-kanda-gata

punya moksa dana kare sastrera sammata

namera ye mukhya-phala krishna-prema-dhana

tara mukhya name matra labhe sadhugana

 

          These inferior names of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Shri Krishna are called upon by those who are on the paths of karma and jnana. According to the scriptures, one who calls upon these names gets piety and liberation. On the other hand, the result of chanting the principal names of the Lord [Govinda, Gopmla, Rama, Nandanandana, Radhanatha, Hari, Yasomati-pranadhana, Madana-mohana, Syamasundara, Madhava, Gopinatha, Vrajogopa, Rakhala, and Yadava] is krishna-prema. In this way, the saintly attain love of Godhead by chanting the principal names of Godhead [while those attached to karma and jnana get mere piety and impersonal liberation by chanting inferior and secondary names because their conception of Godhead is also secondary and inferior.] (Hari-nama-cintmmari)

 

The Principal Name

 

17.47

aghadamana-yasodanandanau nandasuno

kamala-nayana-gopicandra-vrndavanendrah

pranata-karuna-krishnav ity aneka-svarupe

tvai mama ratir uccair vardhatam namadheya

 

          O killer of the demon Agha, O son of Yasoda, O son of Nanda, O lotus-eyed, O moon of the gopis, O Lord of Vnndmvana, O merciful to the submissive, O Krishna, You have manifest Yourself in innumerable forms out of Your infinite mercy. Let my devotion to You go on increasing without any impediment. (Krishna-namastakam, Rupa Gosvami 5)

 

The Fruit of Offenselessly Uttering the Principal Name

 

17.48

tunde tandavini ratim vitanute tundavali-labdhaye

karna-krodha-kadamvini ghatayate karnarbudebhyah sprham

cetah prangana-sangini vijayate sarvendriyanam krtim

no jane janita-kiyadbhir amrtaih krsneti varnadvayi

 

 "I do not know how much nectar the two syllables 'Knn-ra' have produced. When the holy name of Krishna is chanted, it appears to dance within the mouth. We then desire many, many mouths. When that name enters the holes of the ears, we desire many millions of ears. And when the holy name dances in the courtyard of the heart, it conquers the activities of the mind, and therefore all the senses become inert." (Vidagdha-Madhava 1.12)

The Sevenfold Results of Chanting the Principal Name

 

17.49

ceto-darpana-marjanam bhava-maha--davagni-nirvapanam

sreyah-kairava-candrika-vitaranam vidya-vadhu-jivanam

anandambudhi-vardhanam prati-padam purnamrtasvadanam

sarvatma-snapanam param vijayate shri-krishna-saokirtanam

 

          Chanting the holy name of Krishna cleanses the mirror of the heart an extinguishes the fire of misery in the ocean of birth and death. At that time, real auspiciousness begins for the soul. Just as the evening lotus blooms in the moon's cooling rays, the heart begins to blossom in the nectar of the name, and at last the soul awakens in full knowledge of its real inner treasure a life of love with Krishna in the highest mellows of devotion. Again and again tasting nectar, the soul dives and surfaces in the ever increasing ocean of joy. In this way, all phases of the self are fully satisfied and purified by bathing in the nectarean mellows of the holy name of Krishna. Therefore, let the saakirtana of the holy name be victorious. (Siksastaka 1)

 

The Principal Result of Chanting the Holy Name is Krishna-prema, Not Dharma, Artha, Kama or Moksa

 

17.50

bhaktistvayi sthiratara bhagavan yadi syad

daivena nah phalati divya-kisora-murtih

muktih svayam mukulitanjali sevate'sman

dharmartha-kama-gatayah samaya-pratiksah

 

          O Lord when a devotee, by good fortune, develops unflinching devotion to Your transcendentally beautiful, youthful form, then liberation herself waits with folded hands to be his maidservant. And right behind liberation, piety, economic development, and sense enjoyment will wait for the chance to serve. (Krishna-karnamrta 107)

 

Nama-kirtana Fulfills all Aspects of Bhajana

 

17.51

mantratas tantratas chidram desa-kalarha-vastutah

sarvam karoti nischidram anusaokirtanam tava

 

          [In the various kinds of Vedic sacrifice and worship mentioned in the Vedas] There may be discrepancies in pronouncing the mantras and observing the regulative principles, paraphernalia, but when Your Lordship's holy name is chanted, everything becomes faultless. (Bhag. 8.23.16)

The Pure Name Arises Within the Association of Devotees

 

17.52-53

mamaham iti dehadau hitvamithyartha-dhir matim

dhasye mano bhagavati suddham tat-kirtanadibhih

iti jata-sunirvedah ksana-sangena sadhusu

ganga-dvaram upeyaya mukta-sarvanubandhanah

 

          {Ajamila said] Simply because I chanted the holy name of the Lord in the association of devotees, my heart is now becoming purified. Therefore I shall not fall victim again to the false lures of sense gratification. Now that I am fixed in the Absolute Truth, I shall not identify myself with the body. I shall give up the false conception of "I" and "mine" and fix my mind on the lotus feet of Krishna. Because of a moment's association with devotees [the Vishnudhtas], Ajamila detached himself from the material conception of life with determination. Thus freed from all material attraction, he immediately started for Hardwar. (Bhag. 6.2.38-39)

 

17.54

sarvabhauma-sange tomara 'kalusa' haila ksaya

'kalmasa' ghucile jiva 'krishna-nama' laya

 

          Because of the association of [a devotee like] Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya, all your contamination is now vanquished. When a person's heart is cleansed of all contamination, he is able to chant the Hare Krishna maha-mantra. (Cc. Madhya 15.276)

 

17.55

asadhu-sange bhai "krishna nama" nahi haya

"namaksara" bahiraya bate nama kabhu naya

 

          O brothers, the holy name of Krishna is never to be found in the association of those who are un-saintly. The external sound of the holy name is never the name proper. (Prema-vivarta)

 

The Holy Name Cannot be Realized Through the Material Senses

 

17.56

atah shri krishna namadi na bhaved grahyam indriyaih

sevon-mukhe hi jihvadau svayam eva sphuratyadah

 

          Therefore the material senses cannot appreciate Krishna's holy name, form, qualities, and pastimes. When a conditioned soul is awakened to Krishna consciousness and renders service by using his tongue to chant the Lord's holy name and taste the remnants of the Lord's food, the tongue is purified, and one gradually comes to understand who Krishna really is. In other words, the holy name of Krishna can never be grasped by the material senses. Only by rendering devotional service, beginning with vibrating the Lord's glories upon the tongue, can one realize Krishna, for he will reveal Himself directly to the sincere soul. The formula for perfection in chanting the holy name. (Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu 1.2.234)

 

17.57

trnad api sunicena taror api sahisnuna

amanina manadena kirtaniyah sada harih

 

          One should chant the holy name of Krishna in a humble state of mind, considering oneself to be lower than a blade of grass. One should be more tolerant than a tree, devoid of false prestige, and offer all respect to others, without expecting any respect in return. In this way, one should always chant the holy name of Krishna. (Siksastaka 3)

 

The Formula for the Favorable Culture of the Holy Name

 

17.58

syat krishna-nama-caritadi-sitapy avidya-

pittopatapta-rasanasya na rocika nu

kintv adarad anudinam khalu saiva justa

svadvi kramad bhavati tad-gada-mula-hantri

 

          The holy name, character, pastimes, and activities of Krishna are all transcendentally sweet like sugar candy. Although the tongue of one afflicted by the jaundice of ignorance cannot taste anything sweet, it is wonderful that simply by carefully chanting these sweet names every day, a natural relish awakens within this tongue, and his disease is gradually destroyed at the root. (Upadesamrta 7)

 

Determination for Chanting the Holy Name

 

17.59

khanda khanda hai' deha yadi jaya prana

tabu ami vadane na chadi harinama

 

          Even if you cut my body into pieces, I should not give up chanting the holy name. (Cb. Adi 11.91)

 

Kirtana of the Holy Name Gradually Awakens the Form, Qualities, and Pastimes of the Lord

 

17.60

 

krishna-nama dhare kata bala

visaya-vasananale mora citta sada jale

ravintapta maribhumi sama

karna-randhra patha diya, hrdi majhe pravesiya,

varisaya sudha anupama

hrdaya haite bale, jihvara agrete cale

sabda-rupe naca anuksana

kanthe mora bhange svara, anga kanpe thara thara,

sthira haite napare carana

cakse dhara, dehe gharma, pulikata saba carma,

vivarna haila kalevara

murccita haile mana, pralayera agamana,

bhave sarva-deha jara jara

kari'eta upadrava, citte vars sudhaadrava,

more dare premera sagare

kichu na bujhite dila, mora ta batula kaila,

mora citta vitta saba hare

lainu asraya yanra, henu vyavahara tan'ra

varnite napari ei sakala

krishna-nama icchamaya, yahe yahe sukhi haya

sei mora sukhera sambala

premera kalika nama, adbhuta rasera dhama

hena bala karaye prakasa

isat vikasi' punah, dekhaya nija rupa-guna

citta hari' laya krishna-pasa

purna vikasita haina, vraje more yaya laina,

dekhaya more svarupa-vilasa

more siddha-deha diya, krishna-pase rakhe giya,

ei dehera kare sarva-nasa

krishna-nama-cintamani, akhila rasera khani,

nitya-mukta, suddha, rasamaya

namera balai yata, saba la'ye hai hata

tabe mora sukhera udaya

 

          My heart is just like a desert, hot with the rays of the sun. This is my internal mental condition. The desire for mortal things cannot satisfy me because by nature they are death-producing. And not one or two, but thousands of such death-producing desires have taken shelter in my mind. So, my subconscious region is always burning. This is my condition. But somehow, by the grace of the sadhu and guru, the holy name of Krishna with its infinite prospect has entered through the holes of my ears and reached the plane of my heart. And there, with some peculiar hope, with infinite, auspicious possibilities, it touched my heart with a new kind of nectar.

           New hope is aroused by that sound. Then by force it comes form the heart towards the tongue. Not that by the endeavor of my tongue I am producing that sound no. What came from the heart of a saint through my ear, entered my heart, and that forcibly appeared on my tongue, and began to dance.

          That is the holy name proper. It descends from above. It cannot be produced by the material tongue. It's source is above. And through an agent of the absolute it comes through the ear to the heart. From the heart it gathers some sympathy, then the holy name of Krishna forcibly appears upon the tongue and begins to dance. With great force it comes to the end of the tongue, and that sweet sound begins its dancing.

          The real effects of the divine name have been described here. If it is a real and living name, the voice will be choked up, there will be shivering in the body, and the legs will be unable to stand. Sometimes tears will flow in a current on the body, and one's hairs will stand on end. Sometimes changes of color will be found in the body, and we will be unable to find any trace of the mind or consciousness.

          We may fall in a swoon, the whole body and mind will appear as if it is being attacked, shivering, and influenced in different ways.

          Apparently it may seem that so many troubles are created in the body and the mind, but the real heart is overflowing with a particular kind of strange, sweet juice. Sometimes the devotee thinks, 'I am in an ocean of nectar. My whole existence is within an ocean of nectarean liquid. I am beside myself. I can't understand where I am. Where am I? What is this? What is all about me? It has almost made me mad. Am I a madman? Where is my past experience, my seriousness, my gravity, where are they? What am I? I have been converted wholesale by a foreign thing. I am a doll in the hands of a great force, which is also so affectionate to me. I can't ascertain how it is possible that by my faith I have entered this great, unknown environment, not experienced before. And at last I find that I am captivated. My entire being, within and without, has been captured by a particularly sweet force. I can't help being prey to such a sweet power. I can't give any proper description of this. I came to take shelter of Him and accept Him as my guardian; now at His hand I am being dealt with in such a merciless and despotic way.

           Still, I feel that everything is very pleasing , beyond my experience. What is this? I can't resist anymore. I am fully captured. Let my fate go anywhere. I can't come out. I am a captive in the hand of a sweet friend; my whole independence is gone. There is no way left to me but to surrender. I am unable to describe my real position.

          I find that He's an autocrat. Whatever He likes, He will do. Since it is not possible for me to give any resistance, I must surrender. Let me also cooperate with whatever He is pleased to do. Otherwise I find that the sweetness of the name is condensed like a blossoming flower, and very wonderful streams of sweet current are flowing from it. The holy name contains so many sweet variegated forms of current within Him, and He is wonderfully expressing Himself in different ways. Sometimes He emanates a peculiar type of color and figure, and disappears.

          So many charming aspects are shown as if to my eyes within, and He forcibly takes me to surrender at the foot of that altar. He shows Himself in His full-fledged form, in Vnndmvana, in His Braja-lila, with Radharani, and He takes me there. I find that I am in the midst of His peculiar, very sweet and loving paraphernalia. And He says, 'You see! I have so many wonderful things. This is your home. I am not merely imagination, but concrete reality. You will find here that the environment is very favorable and sweet. You are to live here.' I see there that He is dealing in different ways with His associates, in different rasas. And I find that I have another body that has emerged from my previous one, and that has a permanent place here in His service.

          Such a new life I find here. And then I find ultimately that all consideration of my past life and experience has vanished. And it is true: my real life is here. This is proper, and that was a sham, that life has vanished. Then I find that chanting the holy name gives me new encouragement, a new prospect, and new hope. Whatever we want, whatever is our internal demand, it is supplied by the name. If we take the name, all our internal hankerings will be fulfilled. It is eternal, it is the purest of the pure, and it is full of ecstasy.

          Now I find I have been completely converted. How, my innermost hankering is this: Let whatever is against this sweet name vanish eternally from the world. If anything is in opposition to this sweet life, let it vanish, and if necessary, I will give my life to make it disappear from the world forever. Then others will be able to enjoy it at their free will. No hindrance should come to that fulfillment of life. It has no other second. So, everyone may come here, and if necessary, I will sacrifice myself to finish any opposition, so that all can smoothly, peacefully, and without any danger, enjoy this absolute, sweet, and blissful life. (Saranagati, Bhaktivinoda Thakura)

 

The Four Kinds of Namabhasa

 

17.61

saoketyam parihasyam va stobham helanam eva va

vaikuntha-nama-grahanam asesagha-haram viduh

 

          One who chants the holy name of the Lord is immediately freed from the reactions of unlimited sins, even if he chants indirectly, to indicate something else, (as in using the holy name to count drumbeats on a mndarga, or to pace oneself while running), jokingly, for musical entertainment, or even neglectfully. This is accepted by all scholars of the scriptures. (Bhag. 6.2.14)

 

The Results of Namabhasa

 

17.62

tam nirvyajam bhaja guna-nidhim pavanam pavananam

sraddha-sudhyan-matir-itiram-uttama-sloka-maulim

udyan anantah-karana-kuhare hanta yan-nama-bhanor-

abhaso'pi ksapayati mahapataka-dhvantadharam

          [Vidura said to Drthrastra] My dear brother, O ocean of good qualities, just fix your mind on the lotus feet of Krishna, and worship Him with great faith. He is worshiped with poetic hymns by great saints and scriptural authorities. Krishna is the supreme savior amongst all other saviors. In the same way that even a slight glimpse of the sun's rays dissipates the darkness of night, even a dim dawning of the holy name of Krishna, will immediately dissipate all the darkness of ignorance and free one from even the blackest contamination of sinful activity. (Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu, Daksina Vibhaga, 1.103)

 

17.63

yad abhaso' pyudyan kavalita-bhavadhvanta-vibhavo

drsam tat tvandhanam api disati bhakti-pranayinim

janas-tasyodattam jagati bhagavan-nama-tarane

krti te nirvaktum ka iha mahimanam prabhavati

 

          O divine sun of the holy name, even a slight reflection of You can dispel the darkest ignorance from the minds of those who are sunk in worldliness and grant the spiritual vision upon those who are spiritually blind. Who, then, can find the end of Your infinite glories? Who is there expert enough to completely sing the limits of Your greatness? [Just as the twilight before the sunrise dispels darkness and all kinds of fears and troubles, so the dim reflection or the dawning of the holy name (namabhasa) removes all sorts of evils or anarthas arising from forgetfulness of the true nature of the self and the Supreme Lord. (Krishna-namastakam, Rupa Gosvami 3)

17.64

haridasa kahena,-"yaiche suryera udaya

udaya na haite arambhe tamera haya ksaya

caura-preta-raksasadira bhaya haya nasa

udaya haile dharma-karma-adi parakasa

aiche namodayarambhe papa-adira ksaya

udaya kaile krishna-pade haya premodaya

 

          Haridasa Thakura said, "As the sun begins to rise, even before being visible it dissipates the darkness of night. With the first glimpse of sunlight, fear of thieves, ghosts, and demons immediately disappears, and when the sun is actually visible everything is manifest, and everyone begins performing his religious activities and regulative duties. Similarly, the faint dawning of the holy name (namabhasa) dissipates the reactions of sinful life immediately. And when one chants the holy name purely, the complete dawning of the pure holy name takes place, and one awakens to devotional service in krishna-prema at the lotus feet of Krishna. (Cc. antya 3.183-86)

 

The Results of the Pure Holy Name and Namabhasa

 

17.65

namaikam yasya cihnam smarana-pathagatam srotra-mulam gatam va

suddham vasuddha-varnam vyavahitarahitam tarayaty eva satyam

tac ced deha-dravinajani-talobha-pakhanda-madhye

niksiptam syan na phala-janakam sighram evatra vipra

 

          [Sanat-Kumara told Narada] If a person only once hears, chants or remembers the holy name of Krishna, he will certainly be delivered from the ocean of birth and death and attain liberation whether the holy name is pronounced properly or improperly, with correct or incorrect grammar, and whether it is properly joined or only vibrated in part. O brahmana, such are the glories of the holy name. If one chants the syllables of the holy name for personal benefit, however, for material wealth and followers, or out of greed, or in the association of atheists, such offensive chanting will not soon produce the supreme goal of life [krishna-prema]. (Padma Purana, Brahma-khanda, 25.24)

 

The Results of Namabhasa and Namaparadha

 

17.66

yatha nama-bhasabalenajamilo duracaro'pi vaikuntham prapitas-tathaiva smartadayah sadacarah sastrajna api bahuso nama grahino'pyarthavada-kalpanadi-namaparadha-balena ghora-samsaram eva prapyante

 

          Note: In Shrimad Bhagavatam 6.2.9-11, the Vishnudutas say: "The chanting of the holy name of Lord Krishna is the best process of atonement for a thief of gold or other valuables, for a drunkard, for one who betrays a friend or relative, for one who kills a brahmana or for one who indulges in sex with the wife of his guru or another superior.

           It is also the best method of atonement for one who murders women, the king or his father, for one who slaughters cows, and for all other sinful men. Simply by chanting the holy name of Lord Krishna, such sinful persons may attract the attention of the Supreme Lord, who therefore considers, 'Because this man has chanted My holy name, My duty is to give him protection.'

          By following the Vedic ritualistic ceremonies or undergoing atonement, sinful men do not become as purified as by chanting once the holy name of Lord Hari. Although ritualistic atonement may free one from sinful reactions, it does not awaken devotional service, unlike the chanting of the Lord's names, which reminds one of the Lord's fame, qualities, attributes, pastimes, and paraphernalia."]

          Commenting of this section of Shrimad Bhagavatam , Shri Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura remarks as follows on the different results attained by namabhasa or offenseless chanting as opposed to namapradha, or offensive chanting.]

 

Although Ajamila was great sinner, by chanting the holy name of Krishna in namabhasa that is, offenselessly the ultimately attained Vaikurtha. But all the good deeds of the smartas, their knowledge of the sastra, and even their chanting of the holy name many times will not bring them to the same end, because they chant the holy name offensively. They may continue chanting in that way for many millions of year, but because of namaparadha, offenses to the holy name, the holy name does not appear in their impure hearts, and they do not attain the goal. Rather, they simply suffer again and again repeated birth and death in the ghastly material world. (Bhag. 6.2.9-10, Sarartha-darsini commentary)

 

The Proper Mentality for Chanting Without Offense.

 

17.67

tad asma-saram hrdayam batedam

yad grhyamanair hari-nama-dheyaih

na vikriyetatha yada vikaro

netre jalam gatra-ruhesu harsah

 

          Certainly that heart is steel-framed which, in spite of one's chanting the holy name with concentration, does not melt when ecstasy takes place, tears do not fill the eyes and the hairs do not stand on end. (Bhag. 2.3.24)

 

17.68

asrupulakaveva cit-tadravaliogamityapi na sakyate vaktum;

yad uktam shrimad rupa gosvami caranaih:

"nisargapicchila svaste tad abhyasaparo pi ca

sattvabhasam vinapi syuh kvapyasru-pulakadayah"

(Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu 2.3.89)

 

...tatas ca bahir asu-pulakayoh satorapi yaddha dayah na vikriyeya, tad asmasarimiti vakyarthah tatasca hrdaya-vikriya laksmananya-sadharanani ksatinamagrahanasakty adinyeva jneyani... kanisthadhikarinam samat saranastu saparadha-vittatvan-nama-grahana-bahulye'pi tan-madhury-anubhavabhave cittam naiva vikriyeta, tad vyanjakah ksatyadayo 'pi na bhavanti, tesam eva asup-pulakadimattve 'pyasma-sara-hrdayataya nindaisa. kinca, tesam api sahu-sangenanartha-vivrtti-nistharucyadibhumikarudhanam kalena ciccadrave sati cittasyasma-saratvamapagacchatyeva. yesastu cittadrave 'pi sati cittasyasmasaratatisthadeva, te tu duscikitsya eva jneyah

 

[This is from Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura's commentary on Bhag. 2.3.24 quoted as 17.67]

 

          In Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu, Rupa Gosvami analyzes the appearance of the symptoms of divine ecstasy in non-devotees. He refers to these symptoms as sattvabhasa, or a dim reflection of ecstasy. Sometimes it is seen that staunch logicians, without any trace of devotional service and without actually understanding the transcendental glories of the Lord, sit down to hear the glories of the Lord, they appear to be melting and shedding tears. In this connection there is a statement by a devotee who is addressing the Lord as follows:

          "My dear Mukunda, I cannot properly express the glories of Your pastimes. Even when non-devotees hear of Your glorious pastimes they become affected and shed tears and start to tremble." Rupa Gosvami comments on this by saying.] "Such non-devotees are not actually melted; they are hard-hearted. But the influence of the glories of the Lord is so great that even the non-devotees sometimes shed tears.

          Sometimes it is found that a non-devotee who has practically no taste for Krishna and who follows no rules or regulations can, by practice, make a show of devotional symptoms, even crying in an assembly of devotees. This shedding of tears is not actually an ecstatic loving expression. However, it is done simply by practice and is only a dim reflection of true ecstatic symptoms. For example impersonalists may sometimes show symptoms of ecstasy while chanting the holy name Krishna, but this is not accepted as actual ecstasy, but only a dim reflection (Sattvabhasa).

 

          Note:Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura has very critically discussed all these displays of ecstasy in connection with some unscrupulous neophyte's imitating the above symptoms for cheap appreciation. Not only Visvanatha Cakravarti but also Rupa Gosvami has treated them very critically.

           Sometimes all the above eight symptoms of ecstasy are imitated by the mundane devotees, but the pseudo symptoms are at once detected when one see the pseudo-devotee addicted to so many forbidden things. Even though decorated with the signs of a devotee, a person addicted to smoking, drinking or illegitimate sex with women cannot have all the above mentioned ecstatic symptoms. But it is seen that sometimes these symptoms are willingly imitated, and for this reason Shrila Visvanatha Cakravarti accuses the imitators of being stone-hearted. They are sometimes even affected by the reflection of such transcendental symptoms, yet if they still do not give up the forbidden habits, then they are hopeless cases for transcendental realization.

          When Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu met Shrila Ramananda Raya of Kavaur on the bank of the Godavari, the Lord developed all these symptoms, but because of the presence of some non-devotee brahmanas who were attendants of the Raya, the Lord suppressed these symptoms.

          So sometimes they are not visible even in the body of the first-class devotee for certain circumstantial reasons. In Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu (1.3.11) Shri Rupa Gosvami explains that real, steady bhava is definitely displayed in the matter of cessation of material desires (ksmnti), utilization (avyatha-kalatvam), eagerness for glorifying the Lord constantly (nama-gmne sadm ruci), attraction for living in the land of the Lord (pritis tad-vasati sthale), complete detachment from material happiness (virakti), and pridelessness (mana-shnyatm). One who has developed all these transcendental qualities is really possessed by the bhava stage, as distinguished from the stone-hearted imitator or mundane devotee.

           The whole process can be summarized as follows: The advanced devotee who chants the holy name of the Lord in a perfectly offenseless manner and is friendly to everyone can actually relish the transcendental taste of glorifying the Lord. And the result of such realization is reflected in the cessation of all material desires, etc., as mentioned above.

          The neophytes, due to their being in the lower stage of devotional service, are invariable envious, so much so that they invent their own ways and means of devotional regulations without following the acaryas. As such, even if they make a show of constantly chanting the holy name of the Lord, because they commit offenses to the holy name, they cannot relish the transcendental taste of the holy name.

           Therefore, the show of tears in the eyes, trembling, perspiration or unconsciousness, etc., is condemned. They can, however, get in touch with a pure devotee of the Lord and rectify their bad habits; otherwise they shall continue to be stone hearted and unfit for any treatment. A complete progressive march on the return home, back to Godhead, will depend on the instructions of the revealed scriptures directed by a realized devotee. (Bhag. 2.3.24, Sarartha-darsini commentary)