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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > Compiled and Imp Scriptures > Jaiva Dharma > 21. Prameya: Abhidheya -Raganuga-Sadhana-Bhakti


C H A P T E R 2 1

Prameya: Abhidheya -



Vijaya Kumara and Vrajanatha were impressed when they

heard the deliberation concerning vaidhi-sadhana-bhakti.

They became firmly convinced that one must accept hari-nama

and diksa from a siddha-mahatma (great perfected soul) in order

to enter the supreme abode. They therefore decided to accept

diksa from Siddha Babaji Maharaja the very next day, so as not

to lose any time.


Vijaya Kumara had already received diksa-mantra from his family

guru in his boyhood. Vrajanatha, however, had not received

any diksa-mantra other than the Gayatri mantra. They had both

clearly understood from the revered Babaji's instructions that the

jiva goes to hell if he chants mantras received from a guru who is

not a Vaishnava; therefore, according to the regulations of sastra,

when proper discrimination has awakened, he should again take

diksa from a suddha-vaishnava guru. Particularly, one can achieve

perfection in the chanting of his mantra very quickly by accepting

the mantra from a siddha-bhakta. Thinking like this, they both

decided that they would go to Mayapura the next morning, bathe

in the Ganga, and then take diksa from the most revered Babaji.


The next morning, they bathed in the Ganga and applied tilaka

to the twelve places on their bodies. They then arrived before

Raghunatha dasa Babaji and offered prostrated obeisances at his

lotus feet. Babaji Maharaja, being a siddha-vaishnava, understood

their minds, but as a matter of etiquette he said, "Why have you

come here today so early in the morning? What is the matter?"


Vijaya Kumara and Vrajanatha humbly replied, "O Master, you

know that we are very lowly and destitute of spiritual wealth, so

kindly take pity on us."


Babaji Mahasaya was very pleased to hear them speak in this

way. He called them into his kutira separately, and bestowed upon

them the mantra consisting of eighteen syllables. On receiving and

chanting the mantra, they both became intoxicated with mahaprema,

and started dancing, crying out, "Jaya Gauranga! Jaya

Gauranga!" Around their necks they wore three strands of tulasi

beads, the beautiful sacred thread was draped about their bodies,

which were marked with tilaka in twelve places; their faces were

charming; they exhibited some sattvika-vikara (transformations of

ecstasy); and tears flowed incessantly from their eyes. When Babaji

Mahasaya saw such beautiful forms, he embraced them, and said,

"Today, you have sanctified me."


Again and again, they relished the dust from Babaji's lotus feet

and rubbed it on their heads and on all their limbs. At that time,

in accordance with Vrajanatha's previous arrangement, their two

servants arrived with a large quantity of food offerings (bhoga) for

Shriman Mahaprabhu. With folded hands Vijaya Kumara and

Vrajanatha requested that the bhoga preparations should be

offered, and the venerable chief among the bhaktas of Shrivasaangana

instructed the pujari to offer the bhoga to the Deities of Shri

Shri Panca-tattva.


Conch-shells and bells sounded, and the Vaishnavas took up

cymbals, karatalas and mrdangas and began to sing the bhoga-arati

song before Shriman Mahaprabhu. Many Vaishnavas gathered, and

the bhoga offering was accomplished with great ceremony. Arrangements

were then made for distributing prasadam in the natyamandira

(dancing hall). Hearing the loud sounds of hari-nama, all

the Vaishnavas assembled together, bringing their lotas with them.

Then they loudly chanted the glories of maha-prasada and began

to honor prasada. Vrajanatha and Vijaya Kumara did not want to

sit down immediately, because they were waiting for maha-mahaprasada

(the remnants of the guru and the Vaishnavas). However,

the foremost of the respected Babajis made them sit down, saying,

"You are grhastha Vaishnavas. We will be blessed by offering

prostrated obeisances unto your lotus feet."


Vijaya Kumara and Vrajanatha said humbly with folded hands,

"You are great renounced Vaishnavas. We will be very fortunate if

we can partake of your ambrosial remnants, and it will be an offense

if we sit with you."


The Vaishnavas replied, "So far as Vaisnavism is concerned, there

is no difference between a householder and a renunciant.

Vaishnavas are compared only according to their devotion; the more

advanced Vaishnava is simply the one who has the deeper devotion

for Shri Krishna."


They all sat together conversing in this way, and honoring

prasada, but Vijaya Kumara and Vrajanatha waited quietly, faithfully

keeping their prasada in front of them. Some of the Vaishnavas

who were respecting prasada noticed this and, understanding their

motive, said to Raghunatha dasa Babaji, "O chief of the Vaishnavas,

please be kind to your faithful disciples, otherwise they will not

take prasada."


When the elderly Babaji heard the Vaishnavas' request, he gave

some of his prasada to Vijaya and Vrajanatha. They accepted his

remnants with great faith, uttering shri gurave namah, and began to

honor prasada. While the bhaktas were taking prasada, some would

call out, "Sadhus savahana, be very careful not to overeat!" and "All

glories to the greatness of the prasadam!"


Oh! What unprecedented splendor arose in the natya-mandira

of Shrivasa-angana at that time! Everyone perceived Shri Saci-devi,

Sita and Malini-devi bringing prasada, while Shriman Mahaprabhu

sat and lovingly took that prasada with His dear associates. See??

ing this, the Vaishnavas forgot to take their own prasada. They all

watched, motionless, while tears of great joy gently trickled from

their eyes, and their hands, which were in the act of bringing

prasada to their mouths, remained fixed for as long as this lila was

manifest. After a short time, the lila disappeared from their sight,

and they gazed at one another and wept. Then the sweet taste of

that prasada defied description. As if with a single voice all of the

bhaktas said, "These two sons of brahmanas are recipients of Gaura

Hari's mercy. For this reason Shriman Mahaprabhu has manifested

His lila in this festival today."


Vrajanatha and Vijaya Kumara wept and said, "We are worthless,

wretched and destitute. We know nothing at all. We could only see

all these things today by the causeless mercy of our guru and the

Vaishnavas. Today our taking birth has become meaningful."


When Vijaya Kumara and Vrajanatha had honored prasada, they

took permission of the Vaishnavas and returned home.

From that day on, they bathed daily in the Ganga, and then

offered dandavat-pranama at the feet of their preceptor. They

would then take darsana of the Deity forms of Shri Krishna in the

mandira, and circumambulate Tulasi. In this way, they accepted

some kind of instruction every day. After four or five days had

elapsed, they presented themselves one evening at Shrivasa-angana.

Sandhya-arati and nama-sankirtana were already over, and Shri

Raghunatha dasa Babaji sat in his kutira, softly chanting shri-nama

in a sweet voice. They both offered dandavat-pranama at his lotus

feet, and he lovingly placed his lotus hand on their heads, seated

them, and inquired about their welfare.


Vrajanatha saw this as an opportunity and said, "Master, by your

mercy we have properly understood vaidhi-sadhana-bhakti. Now we

are very anxious to understand raganuga-bhakti, so kindly instruct

us about this."


Babaji was extremely pleased to hear this, and said, "Shri

Gaurachandra has taken both of you as His own, so there is nothing

that should not be given to you. Listen very carefully as I explain



"First, I offer my dandavat-pranama again and again at the lotus

feet of Shri Rupa Gosvami, whom Shriman Mahaprabhu liberated

from the association of the Muslims, and to whom he instructed

rasa-tattva at Prayaga. I then take shelter of the lotus feet of Shri

Raghunatha dasa Gosvami, who is like a black bee, tasting the

nectar of that vraja-rasa. The supremely merciful Shri Gauranga

Mahaprabhu liberated him from the bottomless pit of gross materialism.

Then, by entrusting him within the hands of Shri Svarupa

Damodara Gosvami, He bestowed all perfection upon him.


"Now, before describing raganuga-bhakti, I should explain the

svarupa of ragatmika-bhakti.


Vrajanatha: But I would first like to know what is raga.


Babaji: When materialistic people are in contact with the objects

of the senses, they naturally become deeply attached to an endless

variety of material sense enjoyment. This intense attachment in

the heart is called visaya-raga. When they glance upon some

beautiful object, the eyes become restless, and in the heart, there

is an attraction (ranjakata) towards the object of beauty and

attachment (raga) to it.


Raga-bhakti is the state in which Krishna becomes the sole object

of raga. Shrila Rupa Gosvami has defined the word raga in the

following way:


iste svarasiki ragah paramavistata bhavet

tan-mayi ya bhaved bhaktih satra ragatmikodita

Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu (1.2.272)


Raga is the unquenchable loving thirst (prema-mayi trsna) for

the object of one's affection, which gives rise to spontaneous

and intense absorption (svarasiki paramavistata) in that object.

Ragamayi bhakti is the performance of seva, such as

stringing garlands, with such intense raga.


Raga is the absolute (parama) and undivided (svarasiki) absorption

(avistata) in one's own particular object of worship. When

devotion to Krishna comes to the stage of ragamayi, it is called

ragatmika-bhakti. In summary, it can be said that intense hankering

for Krishna that is saturated with prema (prema-mayi) is called



It is auspicious that a person in whose heart such raga has not

arisen should strive to cultivate such bhakti by behaving according

to vidhi (the rules and regulations of sastra). The principles at

work in vaidhi-bhakti are fear, respect and reverence, whereas the

only principle at work in ragatmika-bhakti is lobha, or greed, in

relation to Shri Krishna's lila.


Vrajanatha: Who has the adhikara (qualification) for ragamayi



Babaji: Vaidhi-sraddha bestows the adhikara for vaidhi-bhakti, and

similarly, lobhamayi sraddha (faith imbued with greed for Krishna's

vraja-lila) bestows the adhikara for ragamayi bhakti.


The bhava of the vraja-vasis towards Krishna is the supreme

example of ragatmika-bhakti. One who has the great fortune to have

greed (lobha) to obtain the same bhava (sentiment ) as the vrajavasis

have towards Krishna has the adhikara for raganuga-bhakti.


Vrajanatha: What are the symptoms of such lobha?


Babaji: When one hears about the intensely sweet bhavas of the

vraja-vasis, one's intelligence (buddhi-apeksa) begins to consider

how one may enter into those dealings. That desire (apeksa) is the

symptom that lobha has awakened.


A person who has the adhikara for vaidhi-bhakti tests everything

on the platform of intelligence, knowledge of sastra, and reasoning;

and when he hears krishna-katha, he only accepts it if these three

support it. However, there is no such consideration in raga-marga,

for intelligence, knowledge of sastra, and reasoning are not desired

on this path. All that is needed is the greed for the sentiments of

the vraja-vasis: "What are the sweet bhavas of the vraja-vasis towards

Krishna? Is it possible for me to obtain such bhavas? How can this be

obtained?" This intense yearning is the symptom of greed, and one

who does not have it does not have the adhikara for raganuga-bhakti.

This you should understand.


Vrajanatha: What is the process of raganuga-bhakti?


Babaji: The sadhaka who has developed greed towards the beautiful

service mood (seva) of a particular vraja-vasi always remembers

and meditates on his seva to that personality. He is absorbed in

the mutual pastimes of his beloved Shri Krishna with that vraja-vasi,

and he constantly resides in Vraja, either physically or within the

mind, having a greed to obtain his or her bhava. He follows that

vraja-vasi's example, and always renders seva in two ways: Externally,

he serves as a practicing sadhaka; and internally he renders seva

with the bhavas (bhavana-purvaka) of his siddha-deha. This is the

process of raganuga-bhakti.


Vrajanatha: What is the relationship between raganuga-bhakti and

the angas of vaidhi-bhakti?


Babaji: The angas of vaidhi-bhakti - sravanam, kirtanam, and so on

- are also included in the raganuga-sadhaka's practice. The sadhaka

follows the eternal residents of Vraja, and consequently he tastes

the eternal bliss of service. At the same time, he observes the angas

of vaidhi-bhakti with his external body.


Vrajanatha: Please explain the glories of raganuga-bhakti.


Babaji: Raganuga-bhakti very quickly bestows that fruit which one

cannot obtain even by observing the angas of vaidhi-bhakti with

firm faith (nistha) for a long time. Devotion on the vaidhi-marga

is weak, because it depends on rules and regulations; whereas

raganuga-bhakti is naturally strong, because it is completely independent.

When one adopts the spiritual conception of following

in the footsteps of a loving resident of Vraja, raga is awakened

which always involves following the process of sravanam,

kirtanam, smaranam, pada-sevanam, arcanam, vandanam and atmanivedanam.

Ruci for following in the footsteps of the vraja-vasis

is only awakened in those whose hearts are nirguna (beyond

material attributes). This is why the greed for raganuga-bhakti is

supremely rare and the root of supreme auspiciousness. There

are as many types of raganuga-bhakti as there are of ragatmikabhakti.


Vrajanatha: How many kinds of ragatmika-bhakti are there?


Babaji: There are two kinds of ragatmika-bhakti: that which is based

on transcendental lust to satisfy Krishna (kama-rupa), and that

which is based on relationship (sambandha-rupa).


Vrajanatha: Please explain the difference between kama-rupa and



Babaji: It is said in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (7.1.30-31):


kamad dvesad bhayat snehad yatha bhaktyesvare manah

avesya tad-agham hitva bahavas tad-gatim gatah

gopyah kamad bhayat kamso dvesac caidyadayo nrpah

sambandhad vrsnayah snehad yuyam bhaktya vayam vibho


Many people have attained the Supreme by complete

absorption of the mind in devotion through lusty desires

(kama), envy (dvesa), fear (bhaya), or affection (sneha), and

by giving up the faulty aspects of those sentiments. The

gopis have attained the Supreme by fixing their minds on

Krishna through kama; Kamsa by bhaya; Sisupala and other

kings by dvesa; the Yadus by family relationships

(sambandha); you (the Pandavas) by affection (sneha); and

we sages (Narada and other rsis) by bhakti.


Six principles are mentioned here, namely, kama (lust), bhaya

(fear), dvesa (envy), sambandha (family relationship), sneha (affection),

and bhakti (devotion). Two of these - bhaya (fear) and dvesa

(envy) - should not be imitated because they are unfavorable

sentiments. Now, there are two kinds of sneha. The first is associated

with sakhya-bhava and is included in vaidhi-bhakti. The second

kind is related to prema and has no application in the field of

sadhana. Therefore, sneha has no place in the practice of raganugasadhana-



The words bhaktya vayam (in the sloka 7.1.31) mean that 'we' -

Narada and other sages - have attained the Supreme by bhakti. The

word bhakti here should be understood to mean vaidhi-bhakti, and

may refer either to the vaidhi-bhakti practices of the sages such as

Narada, or to devotion mixed with jnana.


The words tad-gatim gatah mean that many people have attained

the Supreme. It is important to have a clear understanding of this

sentence. A single ray of sunlight (kirana) and the sun itself are

one and the same substance (vastu). Similarly, brahma and Krishna

are also one and the same substance; brahma is simply Krishna's

bodily effulgence. The jnani bhaktas merge into that brahma existence,

and so do Krishna's enemies when He has personally killed

them. Some of them obtain sarupyabhasa (a semblance of sarupya,

or having a form similar to Bhagavan's) and remain immersed in

the bliss of brahma. According to the Brahmanda Purana, they stay

in Siddhaloka, the liberated world beyond the material world.


Two kinds of jivas reside in Siddhaloka: those who have attained

perfection through the cultivation of knowledge (jnana-siddha),

and asuras who have been killed by Shri Bhagavan. Amongst these

jnana-siddhas, some who are extremely fortunate become the asraya

of raga (abode of attachment for Krishna), and they worship His lotus

feet and thus obtain the ultimate aim of krishna-prema. In this way,

they gain entry into the group of Krishna's dear associates.


As the sunrays and the sun are considered one substance,

similarly there is no difference between Krishna's bodily effulgence

known as brahma and Krishna Himself. The words, tad-gatim mean

attaining tat, i.e., Krishna (krishna-gati). The jnanis and the asuras

achieve sayujya-mukti and both attain brahma, which is the rays of

Krishna's effulgence (krishna-kirana). The suddha-bhaktas develop

prema, and attain service to Krishna, who is the root of all existence.

Now, by removing bhaya, dvesa, sneha, and bhakti from the above??

mentioned list of six characteristics, we are left with kama and

sambandha. Therefore, kama and sambandha are the only bhavas that

are applicable in raga-marga. Thus, there are two types of ragamayi

bhakti: kama-rupa and sambandha-rupa.


Vrajanatha: What is the svarupa (intrinsic characteristic) of kamarupa



Babaji: The word kama signifies sambhoga-trsna (the desire for

sambhoga with Krishna). This sambhoga-trsna changes into ragatmikabhakti,

and from this, causeless loving behavior arises. In other words,

priti-sambhoga is to satisfy Krishna's desires. All one's endeavors are

made solely for Krishna's happiness and prosperity, without any

desire for one's own happiness. Even if there is an effort for one's

own pleasure, it is in accordance with Krishna's happiness.


This unprecedented love is only found in the female residents

of Vraja. The gopis' prema is endowed with a particular wonderful

sweetness (madhurya), and gives rise to many playful sports and

pastimes. That is why learned scholars refer to this unique

condition of love as kama (lust), although in reality the gopis' kama

is aprakrta (transcendental) and completely bereft of even the

slightest trace of fault. The kama of the conditioned souls is full of

fault and contemptible, whereas the love of the gopis is so transcendentally

pure and attractive that even such dear bhaktas as

Uddhava also desire to attain it. Nothing can compare with the

gopis' kama; it can only be compared with itself. Kama-ruparagatmika-

bhakti is found only in Vraja, and nowhere else. Kubja's

kama in Mathura is not really kama, but merely rati. The kama that

I am describing has no relation with that of Kubja.


Vrajanatha: What is sambandha-rupa-bhakti?


Babaji: Sambandha-rupa-bhakti is devotion to Krishna in which one

assumes an abhimana (conception and identity) such as "I am

Krishna's father" or "I am Krishna's mother." In Vraja, the devotion of

Nanda Maharaja and Mother Yasoda are examples of sambandharupa



One can attain one's inherent svarupa in unalloyed prema by

developing the bhavas of either kama-rupa or sambandha-rupa.

Therefore, both these bhavas are the shelter of nitya-siddha-bhaktas.

These have only been mentioned in the analysis of raganuga-bhakti.

Now, you can see that there are two types of raganuga-sadhanabhakti:

kamanuga and sambandhanuga.


Vrajanatha: Please explain the nature of kamanuga in raganugasadhana-



Babaji: Kamanuga is the desire to follow kama-rupa-bhakti, of

which there are two types: sambhoga-icchamayi and tat-tad-bhavaicchamayi.


Vrajanatha: What is sambhoga-icchamayi?


Babaji: Sambhoga-icchamayi means the desire to engage in playful

sportive pastimes (keli) with Krishna. Krishna's transcendental

sportive pastimes with the gopis are called sambhoga.


Vrajanatha: What is tat-tad-bhava-icchamayi?


Babaji: Tat-tad-bhava-icchamayi is the desire to experience the

sweet bhavas that the gopis of Vraja have towards Krishna.


Vrajanatha: How do these two kinds of raganuga-sadhana-bhakti



Babaji: When a bhakta sees Shri Krishna's beautiful Deity form and

hears Shri Krishna's madhura-lila-katha (sweet pastimes), an intense

hankering arises in his heart to experience those bhavas, and he

then engages himself in the sadhana of kamanuga and

sambandhanuga raganuga-bhakti.


Vrajanatha: Shri Krishna is male (purusa) and the gopis are all female

(prakrti). As far as I understand, only females can have the adhikara

for kamanuga raganuga-bhakti, so how can a male obtain this bhava?


Babaji: Jivas in this world are the abodes of five different types of

relationships - santa, dasya, sakhya, vatsalya and madhurya - according

to their own inherent svabhava. Of these five, dasya, sakhya,

vatsalya and madhurya are found in the residents of Vraja. Dasya,

sakhya, and vatsalya with fatherly instincts are male bhavas, and

those who are so inclined serve Krishna in male spiritual forms. The

two rasas in which the female bhava is intrinsic are vatsalya with

motherly instincts, and srngara-rasa or madhurya-rasa (the mellow

of amorous love), and those who are of this nature engage in Krishna's

service as females. These two kinds of svabhava exist both in Shri

Krishna's eternal associates and in sadhakas who are in their anugatya



Vrajanatha: How do those who have a male form practice raganugasadhana

with the bhava of the vraja-gopis?


Babaji: Those who have developed ruci for srngara-rasa according

to their adhikara may be male outwardly, but their spiritual body

(siddha-sarira) has a female form. In that siddha-sarira, they engage

in Krishna's service, following in the footsteps of a particular

gopi according to their ruci and inherent svabhava. Padma Purana

describes males who possessed this kind of bhava. When the sages

of Dandakaranya saw Shri Ramacandra's unparalleled beauty, they

performed bhajana with a desire to get Him as their husband. Later,

they attained gopi forms in Gokula lila and engaged in Shri Hari's

service by kama-rupa-ragamayi-bhakti.


Vrajanatha: We have heard that the women of Gokula are nityasiddhas,

who appear in Vraja in order to give nourishment to

Krishna's pastimes. If this is true, how is it consistent with the

description of the Padma Purana?


Babaji: Those who were nitya-siddha gopis easily participated in

the rasa dance with Shri Krishna. Others had taken birth as gopis after

attaining siddhi through kamarupa-sadhana-bhakti. According to

the sloka, ta varyamanah patibhih pitrbhir bhratr-bandhubhih1




1 ta varyamanah patibhih pitrbhir bhratr-bandhubhih

govindapahrtatmano na nyavartanta mohitah (SB 10.29.8)

Even though the (nitya-siddha) gopis were forbidden by their

husbands, fathers, mothers, and brothers, they did not stop,

because they were enchanted, their hearts already having been

stolen by Shri Govinda. In this regard, Shrimad-Bhagavatam

(10.23.20) is also worth studying.





(Shrimad-Bhagavatam 10.29.8), they attained their aprakrta-svarupa

by rendering manasa-seva to Krishna. These were mainly the maharsis

of Dandakaranya.


Vrajanatha: Will you please explain who are the nitya-siddha gopis

and who are the sadhana-siddha gopis?


Babaji: Shrimati Radharani is Shri Krishna's svarupa-sakti, and the

eight principal sakhis are Her first kaya-vyuha (bodily expansions).

The other sakhis follow behind as Her further kaya-vyuha. All

these sakhis are nitya-siddha; they are svarupa-sakti-tattva, not

jiva-tattva. The general sakhis of Vraja - who attained perfection

by performing sadhana - follow Shrimati Radharani's eternal associates

(parikara), and they are known as sadhana-siddha jivas.

Having been imbued with the potency of hladini-sakti, they attained

salokya (residence in vraja-aprakrta-lila) with the nityasiddha

sakhis of Vraja. Jivas who attain perfection by the path of

raganuga-sadhana in srngara-rasa are included amongst the

sadhana-siddha sakhis.


Those who only serve Krishna according to the principles of the

vidhi-marga, with the riramsa (desire) to enjoy with Krishna for their

own pleasure, gain entry into the group of Krishna's queens in

Dvaraka. One cannot become a follower of the vraja-gopis through

the vidhi-marga alone. However, those who behave externally

according to the principles of vidhi-marga, but who internally

practice the sadhana of raga-marga, also obtain vraja-seva.


Vrajanatha: How can one fulfill the desire for enjoyment (ramana)

or riramsa?


Babaji: Those who have the mood of Krishna's queens (mahisi-bhava)

towards Him desire to give up the quality of shamelessness

(dhrstata), and engage in Krishna's service just as a housewife (grhini).

They do not want to serve like the beautiful vraja-sundaris.



Vrajanatha: Please explain this subject more clearly.


Babaji: Mahisi-bhava is the sadhana-seva in which one cherishes

the spiritual self-conception that Krishna is one's own husband.

The relationship that is established with Shri Krishna when one

attains this mahisi-bhava is known as svakiya (marital love). Those

who have mahisi-bhava in the stage of sadhana do not experience

the parakiya-rasa (paramour mellow) of the gopis of Vraja, and this

is why they cannot follow the gopis in parakiya-bhava. Therefore,

the only way to attain vraja-rasa is to practice raganuga-sadhanabhakti

in the parakiya-bhava.


Vrajanatha: By your mercy, I have understood up to this point. Now,

please explain the difference between kama and prema. If the two

are non-different, then can't prema-rupa be used instead of kamarupa?

The word kama sounds somewhat harsh.


Babaji: There is some difference between kama and prema. Prema

is the same as sambandha-rupa ragamayi-bhakti; there is no difference

between those two. In sambandha-rupa-bhakti, there is no

kama, in other words, no desire for sambhoga; it is prema without

playful sporting pastimes (keli). Prema becomes kama-rupa-bhakti

when it is combined with the desire for sambhoga. Kama-rupa-bhakti

is not present in any other rasa; it is found only in the srngararasa

of the vraja-devis. Kama in this material world takes the form

of sense gratification, and it is quite different from aprakrta-kama.

The kama of this material world is only a perverted reflection or

transformation of the faultless aprakrta-kama. Even Kubja's bhava

cannot be called direct kama, although it is directed towards Krishna.


Jadiya-kama (lust in relation to inert, lifeless matter) is based

on sense gratification, and it is only a transformation of misery. It

is worthless and contemptible. In contrast, kama based on prema

is full of ananda, and it is supremely valuable and always joyful.

Since prakrta-kama (worldly lust) is insignificant and abominable,

you should have no hesitation in using the word aprakrta-kama

(transcendental lust).


Vrajanatha: Now please explain raganuga-bhakti that is based on

relationship (sambandha-rupa).


Babaji: Sambandhanuga bhakti has the mood of being related to

Krishna, and this relationship may be one of three types: in dasya

(servitude), in sakhya (friendship), or in vatsalya (parental). 'I am

Krishna's servant, and Krishna is my master'; 'I am Krishna's friend'; 'I

am Krishna's mother or father' - all these moods are called relationship.

Sambandhanuga bhakti is pre-eminently displayed only in the

inhabitants of Vraja.


Vrajanatha: How does one cultivate raganuga-bhakti in the mood

of a servant, friend or parent?


Babaji: One who has awakened ruci for dasya-rasa follows Krishna's

eternal servants such as Raktaka and Patraka, and serves Krishna by

following their particular mood of service, imbued with madhurabhava.

One whose ruci is towards sakhya-rasa serves Krishna by following

the bhava (sentiment) and cesta (endeavors) of one of

Krishna's priya-sakhas such as Subala. One whose ruci is towards

vatsalya-rasa engages in Krishna's service by following the bhava and

activities of bhaktas such as Nanda and Yasoda, who have a parental

relationship with Him.


Vrajanatha: What does it mean to follow (anukarana) the cesta and



Babaji: According to one's eternal inherent nature (siddha-bhava)

towards Krishna, some specific bhavas and cesta (endeavors) arise, and

vyavahara (activities) are also manifested along with them. A sadhaka

performing sambandhanuga bhakti engages himself in Krishna's

service by following these bhavas, cesta and vyavahara. For instance,

Nanda Maharaja has the mood of paternal affection towards Krishna,

so one should follow all the endeavors that he makes to please

Krishna, guided by the mood of paternal affection, but one should

never consider that he himself is Nanda, Yasoda, Subala or

Raktaka. Rather, one should simply follow the bhavas of these great

bhaktas according to one's own ruci; otherwise, it will be an offense.


Vrajanatha: Which type of raganuga-bhakti do we have the adhikara

to adopt?


Babaji: My son, you should scrutinize your own svabhava, and then

you will see the corresponding type of devotion for which you are

qualified. A particular ruci will awaken according to your inherent

svabhava, and you should pursue the rasa that is indicated by

that ruci. In order to cultivate that rasa, you should follow one of

Krishna's eternal associates who is perfect in it. To determine rasa, it

is only necessary to examine your own ruci. If your ruci is towards

the path of raga, then you should act according to that ruci; and as

long as inclination has not awakened for the path of raga, you should

simply execute the principles of vaidhi-bhakti with firm faith.


Vijaya: Prabhu, I have been studying Shrimad-Bhagavatam for a long

time, and I listen to krishna-lila whenever and wherever I find the

opportunity. Whenever I deliberate on krishna-lila, a strong bhava

arises within my heart to serve the Divine Couple as Lalita-devi



Babaji: You need not say any more. You are a manjari (young

maidservant) of Lalita-devi. Which service do you like?


Vijaya: I desire that Shrimati Lalita-devi should grant me permission

to string garlands of flowers. I shall string lovely garlands of

beautiful delicate flowers, and place them in Lalita Sakhi's lotus

hands. She will look upon me with an infinitely merciful, loveladen

glance, and then she will place the garlands around the necks

of Shri Shri Radha and Krishna.


Babaji: I give you my blessings that you may attain perfection in

the goal for which you are undertaking your sadhana.


When Vijaya heard Babaji Mahasaya's affectionate benediction,

he fell at the lotus feet of his preceptor and wept. Seeing his

emotional state, Babaji said, "Go on continually practicing

raganuga-sadhana-bhakti with this same feeling, and externally

follow the conduct laid down according to the rules of vaidhisadhana-

bhakti, in a regular way."


When Vrajanatha saw Vijaya Kumara's spiritual wealth, he

folded his hands and humbly said, "My master, whenever I meditate

on Shri Krishna's pastimes, a desire arises in my heart to serve

Him by following in the footsteps of Subala."


Babaji: Which service do you like?


Vrajanatha: When the calves wander far off to graze, I would very

much like to bring them back in the company of Subala. When

Krishna sits in a place to play upon His flute, I will take the permission

of Subala to let the cows drink water, and then I will bring

them to Bhai (Brother) Krishna. This is my heart's desire.


Babaji: I give you the benediction that you will attain Krishna's

service as a follower of Subala. You are eligible to cultivate the

sentiment of friendship (sakhya-rasa).


It is wonderful that from that day on, within Vijaya Kumara's

mind, the feeling began to sprout that he was a maidservant (dasi)

of Shrimati Lalita-devi, and he began to look upon Shrila Babaji

Maharaja as the personification of Shri Lalita-devi.


Vijaya: Oh master! What more remains to be known about this

subject. Please give your order.


Babaji: Nothing more remains. You need only know the name, form,

dress and so on, of your siddha-sarira. Come to me alone at another

time and I shall tell you all these things.


Vijaya Kumara offered dandavat-pranama at the feet of his preceptor

and replied, "As my master pleases."


From that day on, Vrajanatha began to look upon Babaji as the

personification of Subala. Babaji said to Vrajanatha, "You also

come to me alone at another time and I will tell you the name,

form, dress and ornaments of your spiritual body."

Vrajanatha offered dandavat-pranama and said, "As my master



Vrajanatha and Vijaya Kumara acknowledged their great good

fortune, and from that day on, they happily engaged in their

spiritual practice of raganuga-sadhana. Externally, everything remained

as before, but their inner emotions had changed. Externally,

Vijaya Kumara behaved only as a man, but internally he was

imbued with the female nature (stri-bhava), while within

Vrajanatha appeared the inherent svabhava of a cowherd boy.


The night was far advanced. Both of them returned home,

chanting on their japa-mala the maha-mantra that they had received

from their preceptor - Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna,

Hare Hare, Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. It was

midnight, and the lovely moonlight appeared like a shower of

whitish silver upon the earth. An intoxicating breeze blew from

the Malayan Mountain, creating a very pleasant sensation for the

mind. They sat down together beneath an amvala tree in a beautiful

secluded place near Laksmana Tila, and began a discussion.


Vijaya: Vrajanatha, our hearts' desires have been fulfilled. We shall

certainly be blessed with Krishna's mercy by the grace of the

Vaishnavas. Let us now decide our future course of action. Tell me

frankly what you want to do. Do you want to marry, or do you want

to become a mendicant? I don't want to put any pressure on you; I

just want you to let me know your real intention, so that I can

communicate it to your mother.


Vrajanatha: Uncle, I regard you very highly, and besides that, you

are an erudite scholar and a Vaishnava. You have been my guardian

since my father passed away, and I am prepared to act according to

your order. I am nervous about marriage because I don't want to

become entangled in the material world and fall down from my

realization of the supreme spiritual reality. What is your opinion?


Vijaya: I don't want to impose anything on you. You have to decide

for yourself.


Vrajanatha: It will be proper for me to receive Gurudeva's instruction,

and act accordingly.


Vijaya: That's a good idea. Tomorrow we shall take Prabhupada's

decision on this subject.


Vrajanatha: Uncle, what is your consideration? Will you remain

as a grhastha or become a mendicant?


Vijaya: My son, like you, I am also undecided. I sometimes think of

giving up grhastha-dharma and becoming a mendicant; and

sometimes I think that if I do so, my heart may become dried up, so

that I am deprived of bhakti-rasa as well. I think it is appropriate to

take Shri Gurudeva's order in this regard, and act accordingly. I shall

do as he instructs me.


Realizing that the night was far advanced, uncle and nephew

returned home chanting hari-nama, then after honoring prasada,

they took rest.