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Chapter Eight: The Disappearance of Jagannatha Mishra
This chapter describes Nimai's sacred thread ceremony, His studying at the house of Gangadasa Pandita, Jagannatha Mishra's dream of Vishvambhara's future pastimes as a sannyasi, and the disappearance of Jagannatha Mishra.
Shri Gaurasundara accepted the sacred thread in a grand ceremony at an auspicious moment, on an auspicious day, in an auspicious month. Then in order to deliver the living entities He enacted the pastimes of Vamanadeva and begged alms from everyone. Shri Gaurasundara began to study with Gangadasa Pandita, who is nondifferent from Sandipani Muni and the crest jewel among the professors of Navadvipa. When Gangadasa realized that Nimai was the most intelligent of his students, he became very pleased. Nimai did not hesitate to challenge even Gangadasa's senior students, headed by Shri Murari Gupta, Kamalakanta, and Krishnananda. Nimai would go to the various bathing ghatas along the Ganges and quarrel with the other students. After Nimai explained and established the meaning of a sutra, He would refute that meaning and then again reestablish His first explanation, thereby astonishing the assembled students. In order to see Nimai's scholastic pastimes, the omniscient Brihaspati appeared in Navadvipa along with his disciples. The Ganges had long desired the good fortune enjoyed by the Yamuna: urmidorvilasa-padma-nabha-pada-vandini-"who with folded hands in the form of waves prayed to the lotus feet of the Lord." Shri Gaurasundara, who is a desire tree, regularly fulfilled that desire of Gangadevi. Thus Nimai displayed His pastimes of bathing in the Ganges, properly worshiping Vishnu, watering the tulasi plant, and honoring prasada. Thereafter He would sit in a secluded place in His house to study and write a commentary on the sutras. Seeing these activities, Jagannatha Mishra was jubilant within, and out of parental affection he continually prayed to Krishna so that his son would not face any obstacles. One day Jagannatha Mishra dreamt that Nimai was dressed as a wonderful sannyasi and engaged in continual laughing, dancing, and crying while chanting the names of Krishna surrounded by the devotees headed by Advaita Acarya. He saw Nimai sit on Vishnu's simhasana and place His feet on everyone's head. The demigods led by the four-headed, five-headed, and thousand-headed Lords all chanted, "Jaya Shacinandana!" and offered prayers from all sides. Then he saw Nimai dancing and chanting in the streets of Navadvipa followed by millions of people. He also saw Nimai going to Nilacala with His devotees. After seeing this dream, Jagannatha Mishra was convinced that Nimai would leave home, and he became filled with fear and anxiety. Shacidevi, however, solaced Jagannatha Mishra, saying, "The way Nimai is engaged in studying, He will never leave home and go anywhere." Shortly thereafter, Jagannatha Mishra left this world. As Shri Ramacandra cried when Shri Dasharatha left this world (feeling separation from His devotee), Shri Gaurasundara also profusely cried on the disappearance of Jagannatha Mishra. Thereafter Nimai solaced mother Shaci in various ways, saying, "I'll give you that which is rare for even Lord Brahma and Lord Shiva." One day before going to take bath in the Ganges, Nimai asked Shacidevi for some oil, an amalaki fruit, a flower garland, and some sandalwood to worship the Ganges. When Shacidevi requested Nimai to wait a bit, Nimai became as angry as Rudra and began to destroy everything in the house, including the doors and windows. Being the protector of sanatana-dharma, however, the Lord did not raise His hand against His mother. After breaking everything, Nimai began to roll on the ground. Thereafter Shacidevi brought sandalwood and a garland for Nimai's worship of the Ganges. As Yashoda tolerated all of Krishna's mischievous activities in Gokula, Shacidevi similarly tolerated all of Nimai's mischievous activities in Navadvipa. After Nimai bathed in the Ganges, returned home, and ate, Shacidevi said to Him, "What did You gain by smashing everything in the house? What will You eat tomorrow? We have no more provisions at home." In reply, Nimai told His mother, "Vishvambhara Krishna is the only maintainer of everyone. His devotees do not need to worry about their food." Saying this, Shri Gaurasundara, the husband of Sarasvati, went out to manifest His pastimes of study. When Nimai returned home, He gave twenty grams of gold to His mother and said, "Krishna has given this resource, you can exchange it for whatever household provisions we need." Shacidevi thought, "Whenever there is a shortage at home, Nimai immediately brings gold from somewhere." Shacidevi became afraid as she thought, "I don't know, perhaps some problem will arise." Thus Shacidevi first checked the gold with five to ten people before exchanging it for her household necessities. Nimai remained always engaged in discussing the scriptures while taking bath, eating, and traveling. He did not disclose Himself due to the fallen condition of the world. This chapter ends with a description of the world as devoid of devotional service to Lord Hari and the distress felt by the compassionate Vaishnavas on account of this pathetic condition.
Commentary and Chapter Summaries of His Divine Grace Om Vishnupada Paramahamsa Parivrajakacarya Shri Shrimad Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Gosvami Prabhupada.