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Shri Nityananda Charitamrita
The Nectarean Pastimes of the Supreme Lord Nityananda Prabhu
Composed By Shrila Vrindavana dasa Thakura
Published and Copyrighted by Isvara dasa
Nityananda Charitamrita Introduction
by Isvara dasa
Shrila Narottama dasa Thakura says,
"hena nitai bine bhai radha-krishna paite nai"
That without the mercy of Lord Nityananda, no one can attain Shri Shri Radha and Krishna. The ultimate goal of life is the attainment of krishna-prema. This is possible only by the mercy of sadhu-guru. Shri Nityananda Prabhu is the sum total of all gurus (samashti-guru). He is guru-tattva. All individual gurus (vyashti) are representations of Shri Nityananda. Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura writes in the Harmonist magazine about the manifestation of guru in the form of Shri Nityananda:
The guru is the embodiment of the manifestation of the Divinity to the pure receptive spiritual essence of the disciple. Nityananda is the primary manifestive constituent of the Divinity. Nityananda alone possesses the distinctive function of the guru. In Nityananda the function is embodied. Nityananda is the servant-God. He serves Shri Gaurasundara by the distinctive method of reverential servitude. He is identical with Shri Balarama of krishna-lila. Shri Balarama is not the chum of Krishna, but His respected elder brother. It is an intimate relationship characterized by becoming reserved on one side, and of respectful deference on the other. Individual souls are under the direction of Nityananda. They receive their service of Shri Gaurasundara, i.e., of Krishna, at His hands. Nityananda is not a jiva. He is Divinity. He is the ultimate source of the jiva. The jiva is a potency of Nityananda. No jiva can be the medium of the service of the Absolute to another jiva. The Absolute alone may communicate His service to the separable constituents of Himself. This is the real nature of the function of the guru.”
“But Nityananda does not directly instruct in the confidential service of Krishna. Shrimati Radhika is the guru of the inner circle of the servants of Krishna. Shrimati Radhika, however, accepts the offer of service of only those souls who are specially favored by Nityananda and are deemed by Him to be fit for Her service. There is, therefore, a most intimate relationship between the function of Nityananda and that of Shrimati Radhika, which is at once supplementary to and inclusive of the former.”
“But all jivas are not liable to be eclipsed by the deluding potency. Those who are so liable are again distinct from the eternally free jivas. The eternally free jivas are inseparable associates of Nityananda. They are integrated part and parcel of Himself. They never fall into the clutches of maya. When Nityananda manifests His appearance on the mundane plane, His inseparable constituents also appear in His company. They sometimes manifest their function on this lower place in a visible form on the errands of Nityananda. They are Vaishnavas whose subordination to Nityananda is natural and ingrained in their nature. It is not necessary for such souls to undergo the process of enlightenment for being restored to the spiritual plane. Unless this fact is borne in mind, the conditioned soul may be tempted to undervalue the constant guidance of the guru on the hypocritical plea of following in the footsteps of the eternally free pure devotees.
Those, therefore, who suppose that deliverance from the bondage of this world should be practicable without the constant guidance of the spiritual preceptor, confound the conditioned state with the free.”
There is no difference between Lord Chaitanya and Lord Nityananda. As Lord Krishna and Lord Balarama are essentially the same and the original forms of Godhead, so Lord Chaitanya and Lord Nityananda, who are Krishna and Balarama directly, are one and the same. Lord Krishna manifested Himself as a separate form of Lord Balarama for the performance of His own lilas and to benefit the jivas by showing them the path of developing loving service unto Himself. In the Chaitanya-caritamrita, Shrila Krishnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami explains that Lord Krishna is eternally enjoying Himself in Goloka Vrindavana along with His unlimited associates. Lord Balarama, however, is the source of all spiritual and material manifestations. All the Narayana and Vishnu expansions come from Lord Balarama. As such, Lord Balarama is directly the source of all incarnations in this material world.
As Lord Chaitanya’s pastimes are much more pleasing than Krishna’s pastimes, so Lord Nityananda’s pastimes are much more pleasing than those of Lord Balarama. Lord Balarama was famous for His pastimes of chastising the miscreants, such as killing so many demons, being ready to throw the whole city of Hastinapura into the ocean, and the killing of Romaharshana Suta. His form as Lord Nityananda, however, is known as akrodha paramananda nityananda-raya, He never gets angry. The form of Lord Nityananda is the most merciful form and the giver of krishna-prema-bhakti. Lord Chaitanya Himself declared in shri nityananda-caritamrita antya-khanda, chapter three, “Those who develop love, affection, and respect for Shri Nityananda, develop love and affection for Me. All the demigods headed by Lord Siva and Lord Brahma offer worship to Nityananda Svarupa. If somebody thinks ill of Shri Nityananda or blasphemes Him, whoever he may be, still he must fall down. Even if such a person profess to be a devotee of Mine, he is not My devotee”
Shri Nityananda-caritamrita is an authentic Vaishnava literature compiled by Shrila Vrindavana dasa Thakura. This book describes the transcendental glories of Lord Nityananda. The birth of Nityananda, His childhood pastimes, His leaving home, His traveling to the holy places, His arrival at Navadvipa and meeting Lord Chaitanya, His preaching the holy names of the Lord by the order of Lord Gauranga, His pastimes with Mahaprabhu at Nadia, His presence at the Lord’s pastime of accepting sannyasa, His accompanying the Lord to Nilacala, His return to Navadvipa by the order of the Lord, His marriage, His distribution of love of God, and His disappearance from this world. All these subjects are elaborately and properly described in this book. The author of this book, Shrila Vrindavana dasa Thakura, is forever remembered in the Vaishnava communities for his wonderful literary work, Shri Chaitanya-bhagavata. The glories of Shri Chaitanya-bhagavata were proudly described by the author of Shri Chaitanya-caritamrita, Shrila Krishnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami, in his book as follows:
manushye racite nare aiche grantha dhanya
vrindavana-dasa-mukhe vakta shri-chaitanya
“No human being can compose such a book. Actually, Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu speaks through the mouth of Shrila Vrindavana dasa Thakura.” (Chaitanya-caritamrita Adi-lila 8.39)
Shri Chaitanya-bhagavata is the original book in Bengali language about the pastimes of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Following the codes of Chaitanya-bhagavata, other books such as Shri Chaitanya-caritamrita were compiled. This present book contains what is presently in Chaitanya-bhagavata about Lord Nityananda, but Shrila Vrindavana dasa Thakura has given additional information. This includes: the affection of Hadai Pandita for Lord Nityananda, the marriage of Vasudha and Jahnava with Lord Nityananda, and the disappearance of Lord Nityananda. Therefore this book, Shri Nityananda-caritamrita, is very similar to Shri Chaitanya-bhagavata. This book giving an exclusive narration of the pastimes of Lord Nityananda will serve as a great inspiration for communities of Vaishnavas, especially from the English speaking world.
Completed January 31st, 2000
Vrindavana dhama, India.
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