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Nityananda Charitamrita, Antya Khanda Chapter 8
A brahmana's doubt in the character of Lord Nityananda and its removal by Lord Gauranga
All glories to Shri Gaurachandra! All glories to Nityananda Prabhu! All glories to all the devotees of the Lord! Lord Nityananda happily enjoyed the pastimes of nama-sankirtana with His servants. As He previously enjoyed His pastimes in Vrindavana, Nityananda enacted His pastimes in Navadvipa. He made everyone in this world fully attached to the lotus feet of Shri Krishna Chaitanya. Nityananda Prabhu, the abode of transcendental effulgence, wandered all over Navadvipa with His most enthusiastic associates. He decorated himself with beautiful ornaments and flower garlands. Betel nuts and camphor reddened His lips. Seeing the extraordinary pastimes of Lord Nityananda, many people became happy while others did not know what to make of Him.
A brahmana lived in Navadvipa who was a classmate of Shri Gauranga Mahaprabhu. Seeing the mysterious behavior of Nityananda, this brahmana got a doubt. He had firm faith and devotion to the lotus feet of Gaurangacandra, but he failed to understand the potency of Nityananda Svarupa. Once, this brahmana went to Nilacala for some days. He regularly visited Shri Gauranga Mahaprabhu for he had firm faith in His lotus feet. One day, he wanted to ask something of the Lord alone.
The brahmana said, "O Lord, I'd like to ask something, if You'll allow me. If You really think me Your servant, then please answer my question. I don't understand what this Nityananda Avadhuta is doing at Navadvipa. Everyone says that He's a sannyasi. But to everyone's surprise, He chews betel nut with camphor. A sannyasi is not supposed to touch gold and so on. But Nityananda decorates His whole body with gold, silver, and pearls. Abandoning kaupina and saffron robes, He dresses Himself with fine and gorgeous clothing. He also puts sandalwood paste on His body.
"Why does He carry an iron stick instead of a sannyasa-danda? He always mingles with sudras. I don't find His behavior in accordance with the scriptures. So I have a doubt in my heart. Everyone addresses Him as an exalted person, but He doesn't follow the rules and regulations of His asrama. O Lord, if You think me Your servant, then please explain the truth. Since the pious brahmana inquired from the Lord at an auspicious moment, Shri Gaurasundara explained everything to him.
suna bipra maha adhikari ye ba haya, tabe tanra doya guna kichu na janmaya
"Listen, my dear brahmana. Faults or defects do not affect an exalted person. Shrimad-Bhagavatam 11.20.36 states:
na mayy ekanta-bhaktanam,
sadhunam sama-cittanam, buddheh param upeyusham
Material piety and sin, which arise from the good and evil of this world, cannot exist within My unalloyed devotees, who, being free from material hankering, maintain steady spiritual consciousness in all circumstances. Indeed, such devotees have achieved Me, the Supreme Lord, who am beyond anything that can be conceived by material intelligence.'
padma patre yena kabhu nahi loge jala
eimata nityananda svarupa nirmala
paramartha krishnacandra tahana career
niscaya janiha bipra sarvada bihare
adhikari bai kare tahana amara
duhkha paya sei jana papa janma taya
rudra bine anye yadi kare bishagana
sarvathaya mare sarva purana pramana
"As water doesn't touch a lotus leaf, so too no faults touch Nityananda Svarupa. O brahmana, know that Krishnacandra eternally resides in Nityananda's body. Those disregarding an exalted person will suffer miseries and reap sinful reactions. The Puranas say if anyone other than Lord Siva drinks poison, he will surely die. Shrimad-Bhagavatam 10.33.29-30 also says,
isvaranam ca sahasam
tejiyasam na doshaya
vahneh sarva-bhujo yatha
nSukadeva Gosvami said: The status of
powerful controllers is not harmed by any apparently audacious transgression of
morality we may see in them, for they are just like fire, which devours
everything fed into it and remains unpolluted.'
naitat samacarej jatu
manasapi hy anisvarah
vinasyaty acaran maudhyad
yatharudro 'bdhi-jam visham
nOne who is not a great controller
should never imitate the behavior of ruling personalities, even mentally. If
out of foolishness an ordinary person does imitate such behavior, he will
simply destroy himself, just as a person who is not Rudra would destroy himself
if he tried to drink an ocean of poison.'
eteke ye na janiya ninda tana karma
nija dose sei duhkha paya janma janma
garhito karaye yadi maha adhikari
nindaya ki daya tanre hasilei mari
bhagavata haite se e sava tattva jani
taho yadi vaishnava-gurura murkhe suni
"Those thus criticizing an exalted person without knowing his glories suffer miseries life after life from this fault. Even if an exalted person does something improper, what to speak of criticizing him, if one even laughs at him, such a person is doomed. Shrimad-Bhagavatam describes all these truths. One can also hear this from the mouth of a bona fide spiritual master. Listen attentively to the results of laughing at the behavior of an exalted person described in Shrimad-Bhagavatam:
"Once, Krishna and Balarama went to the asrama of Sandipani Muni to study. After completing Their studies, They wanted to go home. They asked Their teacher, nWhat dakshina should we give?' After consulting his wife, the teacher asked Krishna and Balarama to bring back his dead son. Krishna and Balarama started at once for the abode of Yamaraja. After destroying all the child's karma, They brought the boy back to Their teacher from the abode of Yamaraja. When Devaki heard of this most wonderful incident, she too asked Krishna to bring back her dead sons.
"One day Devaki addressed both Krishna and Balarama pathetically, nListen, Krishna and Balarama. You're the Lords of all mystic perfections. You're both the eternal Personalities of Godhead. Both of You are the fathers of the entire universe. I know that both of You are the cause of all the causes. Creation, maintenance, and annihilation are carried out by the portion of Your plenary portion. Yet, to diminish the burden of the earth, You've descended as my sons. You brought back the dead son of Your teacher from the abode of Yamaraja as dakshina. I, too, have a great desire to see my six sons who were killed by Kamsa. Though the son of Your teacher died long ago, You brought him back by Your extraordinary potency. So both of You please fulfill my desire by bringing my six sons back.'
"After hearing mother Devaki's request, Krishna and Balarama left at once for the abode of Bali Maharaja. When Bali Maharaja saw his own worshipable Lords, he merged in the ocean of transcendental bliss. He promptly surrendered everything including his house, children, body, wealth, and friends at the lotus feet of Krishna. In ecstasy his hair stood on end, tears of love flowed from his eyes, and he shivered in bliss. He caught hold of Krishna's lotus feet and began to offer prayers.
"All glories to Krishnacandra, the ornament of Gokula! All glories to Sankarshana, who is non-different from Ananta! All glories to Haladhara, the leader of the cowherd boys! All glories to the merciful devotees of Krishna who fulfill all one's desires! Although the demigods and sages are situated in pure goodness, still Your darsana is rare for them. O Lord, You are so merciful that You manifest Yourself even before the demons who are generally in ignorance. You do not discriminate between friends and enemies. The Vedas confirm it and I can directly see it. Putana came to kill You by smearing her breast with poison, still You sent her to Vaikuntha. Neither the Vedas, nor the scriptures, nor the great mystic yogis can understand Your heart. If the great mystic yogis are unable to know Your glories, then how can I, a sinful demon, know You? O Lord of the universe, please be merciful to me so that I may not fall down in the dark well of family life. I wish to hold Your lotus feet within my heart and live peacefully beneath a tree. O Lord, please make me a servant of Your servant. I have no other desire.'
"Holding the lotus feet of Krishna and Balarama within his heart, Bali Maharaja offered prayers. Bali Maharaja and his family members drank and touched their heads with the water that washed the lotus feet of the Lord and felt immensely fortunate. Such water purifies the abodes of Lord Brahma and Lord Siva just as the Ganges purifies the entire three worlds. He also offered worship with sandalwood paste, flowers, ghee lamp, incense, cloth, and ornaments. Finally, he offered his respectful obeisances and continued, nO Lord, please instruct me if You really think me to be your servant. Anyone who follows Your instructions reaches beyond the jurisdiction of rules and regulations.'
"Lord Krishna, exceedingly pleased with Bali, began to explain the reason for His visit. The Lord said, "Listen, Bali Maharaja. The sinful Kamsa killed my mother's six sons. Thus he also finally died. Remembering her sons, mother Devaki continually cries in lamentation. Those six sons are with you and I want to take them back for the pleasure of My mother. Those six sons are actually perfected demigods, grandsons of Lord Brahma. Let Me explain to you why they had to undergo such tribulations.
"These six sons were previously the sons of Prajapati Marici, a son of Brahma. Once, Lord Brahma was bewildered by lusty desires and shamelessly chased his own daughter. Seeing the behavior of Brahma, the six sons of Marici laughed at him. Because of this fault, they at once fell from their positions. Since they ridiculed the activities of an exalted person, they were forced to take birth among demons. Leaving their demigod bodies, they took birth in the family of Hiranyakasipu who terrorized the entire universe. They suffered various miseries and were ultimately killed by the thunderbolt of Indra. By the arrangement of Yogamaya, these six sons of Marici took birth from the womb of Devaki.
Simply by laughing at Brahma's misbehavior, they incurred so many sinful reactions. They thus had to undergo these punishments. From their birth, they suffered unlimited distress. Though they were nephews of Kamsa, he killed them. Devaki is unaware of these mysteries. She simply cries considering them as her own sons. I wish to return those six sons to my mother. That's why I've come here to you. Drinking milk from Devaki's breast will release these six from the Brahma's curse.' Lord Krishna continued, O Bali, consider the consequences of ridiculing a Vaishnava. If perfect personalities like these received so much misery, what will be the fate of ordinary men? A sinner who criticizes a Vaishnava suffers misery birth after birth. Take this lesson to your heart. Never blaspheme or laugh at a Vaishnava. If one worships Me and chants My holy names, but blasphemes devotees, he'll be vanquished. Those who show love and respect to My devotees will surely obtain My favor. There is no doubt about it.'
"The Varaha Purana states:
siddhir bhavati va neti samsayohucyata sevinam
"Whether there is perfection or not for the servants of Acyuta, there could be doubt. But for His devotees who are engaged in His service, there is no doubt."
"In Shri Hari-bhakti-sudhodaya it says:
arcaittva tu govindam tadiyannaccayatmane
na te vishnu prasadasya bhajanam danbhika janah
"If one does not worship My devotees but only worships Me then he is simply a proud person and not a recipient of My mercy.'
"O Bali, I explained this confidential topic to you since you are My eternal and dear servant.'
"Bali Maharaja was very pleased to hear the teachings of Lord Krishna. Obeying the Lord's order, he at once brought the six sons and offered them to the Lord. Krishna and Balarama took them and returned them to mother Devaki. When Devaki saw her sons, out of affection she happily fed them breast milk. Drinking the remnants of Lord Krishna as Devaki's breast milk, they were filled with transcendental knowledge. They promptly offered obeisances to the Lord falling flat on the ground. Everyone witnessed this.
"Lord Krishna, glancing mercifully on them, began to compassionately instruct them, nO demigods, now you may go home. Never blaspheme an exalted person again. Lord Brahma is the energy of the Supreme Lord. Even if he acts wrongly, one should not blaspheme him. You have suffered so much by ridiculing him. Now give up such a mentality. Go to Lord Brahma and beg his pardon. You'll then regain your happiness.' The six demigods offered obeisances to their mother and father, Devaki and Vasudeva. Then, after offering their obeisances to Krishna and Balarama, they returned to their heavenly abode."
Lord Gauranga said, "O brahmana, I've explained the topics of Shrimad-Bhagavatam to you. Don't maintain the slightest doubt about Nityananda Svarupa. He is the most exalted personality. Unfortunate people are unable to understand Him. Accept His uncommon activities. Then you'll surely be delivered. He incarnated simply to deliver the fallen souls. He'll liberate all living beings. His dealings are above all rules and regulations. Who has the power to understand Him? Anyone who blasphemes Nityananda without knowing His unfathomable qualities, even if that person achieved vishnu-bhakti, is doomed. O brahmana, go to Navadvipa and explain this truth to everyone. If anyone blasphemes Nityananda Prabhu in any way, no one will be able to protect that person from Yamaraja's punishment.
"One who loves Him actually loves Me. I'm telling you the truth. Even if Nityananda marries a Muslim girl or enters a wine shop, He is still worshipable by Lord Brahma. This is My verdict."
Shri Gauranga Himself spoken the following verse,
grihniyad yavani panim vised ba sausnukalayam
tathapi brahmana bandyam nityananda padasvujam
"Even if Lord Nityananda marries a Muslim girl or enters a wine shop, He is still worshipable by Lord Brahma."
The Lord's words made the pious brahmana very happy. He gained immense faith in the lotus feet of Nityananda and returned to Navadvipa. Arriving in Navadvipa, the fortunate brahmana first went to Nityananda Prabhu's house. He begged forgiveness for his offenses from Nityananda who fully bestowed His mercy on him.
Such are the dealings of Nityananda Svarupa. They are unknown to the Vedas and incomprehensible to ordinary men. From the spiritual point of view, Nityananda Prabhu is the master of the mystic yoga. He is also known as Adideva Dharani-dhara, the original personality who holds the universes on His hoods. He has thousands of heads and His body is eternal and pure. Without the mercy of Shri Gauranga, no one can know Him.
Some said, "He's Balarama," while others said, "He's the dearmost associate of Shri Gauranga." Another said, "He's the most effulgent plenary portion of the Personality of Godhead." Still another declared, "We don't understand. If one calls Nityananda a living entity, a devotee, or a learned scholar, it doesn't matter. Nityananda Prabhu may be anyone to Shri Gauranga, still I keep His lotus feet within my heart. He's my Lord, and I'm His servant birth after birth. I pray to everyone to bless me to always remain this way."
Shri Gaurasundara is the Lord of my Lord. I always keep this faith within my heart. Will that day ever come when I'll see Gauranga and Nityananda surrounded by their devotees? All glories to Mahaprabhu Gaurachandra! You kindly gave me the association of Nityananda, and then took Him away from me. Still, O Gaurahari, favor me so I never forget You and Nityananda Prabhu. Wherever You both appear, let me also appear as Your eternal servant.
Accepting Shri Gauranga and Nityananda Prabhu as my life and soul, I, Vrindavana dasa, sing the glories of Their lotus feet.
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