Post Author: Swami Gaurangapada Date: 2007-11-03 20:27:42
Shri Virachandra or Virabhadra Prabhu appeared on the ninth day of the dark fortnight of the month of Kartik. Krsna dasa Kaviraja Gosvami has given this description of Him in the C.c. Adi 11.8-12:
"After Nityananda Prabhu, the greatest branch is Virabhadra Gosani, who also has innumerable branches and sub-branches. It is not possible to describe them all. Although Virabhadra Gosani was the Supreme Personality of Godhead Lord Kshirodakashayi Vishnu Himself, He presented Himself as a great devotee. And although the Supreme Godhead is transcendental to all Vedic injunctions, He strictly followed the Vedic rituals. He is the main pillar in the hall of devotional service erected by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. He knew within himself that He acted as the Supreme Lord Visnu, but externally He was prideless. It is by the mercy of Sri Virabhadra Gosani that people all over the world now have the chance to chant the names of Caitanya and Nityananda. I there take shelter of the lotus feet of Virabhadra Gosani so that by His mercy my great desire to write Sri Caitanya-Charitamrta will be properly guided."
Sri Birbhadra Gosvami is the son of Sri Nityananda Prabhu and the disciple of Sri Jahnava Mata. His mother is Srimati Vasudha Devi. In the Gaura-ganoddesa-dipika it is described that Sri Viracandra Prabhu is an incarnation of Ksirodakasayi Visnu ?one of the expansions of Sri Sankarsana. He is thus not different from Lord Caitanya Himself.
Once upon a time, Isvari (Sri Jahnava Mata) went to the house of one Jadunandana Acarya of Jhamatpur near Rajbol Hat(ta?)?and by her mercy he became a devotee. Jadunanda's wife was extremely devoted to her husband and his two daughters, Srimati and Narayani, possessed bodily forms which excelled the limits of mortal beauty. By the desire of Isvari that very perfect brahmana gave these two daughters in marriage to Prabhu Viracandra. [B.R.13]
Sri Yadunandana Acarya became the disciple of Vircandra Prabhu and Srimati and Sri Narayani were given initiation in mantra by Sri Jahnava Mata. Viracandra prabhu had a sister, Srimati Gangadevi, who was none other than Mother Ganga herself. Her husband Madhavacarya was an incarnation of Raja Santanu.
Taking permission from his mother, Viracandra Prabhu set out on a pilgrimage to Vrindavana. First he came to Saptagram and proceeded to the house of Sri Uddharana Datta Thakura where He was met by Uddharana Datta's son, Srinivasa Datta. Srinivasa greeted Him with respect and showed Him all hospitality for the two days that he stayed there. From there He went to Santipur where He was led to Advaita Bhavan in a kirtan procession by Advaita Acarya's son, Sri Krsna Misra. Next he crossed the Ganges River and came to Gauri dasa Pandita's house in Ambika Kalna. Sri Hrdaya Caitanya Prabhu respectfully greeted Him and honored Him as His guest. From here He came to Navadvipa, to the house of Jagannath Misra. When the family members and associates of Mahaprabhu learned that He was the son of Sri Nityananda Prabhu, they were highly pleased and showed Him all courtesies.
After spending two days there He came to Sri Khanda where He was greeted very respectfully and affectionately by Sri Raghunandana and to Sri Kanai Thakura. He spent a few days there, and then went to Srinivasa Acarya Prabhu's house in Jajigram, where Acarya Prabhu received his exalted guest by offering Him the appropriate worship. A few days passed In the ecstasy of sankirtan and then Viracandra Prabhu came to Kantak Nagan (Katwa). He remained there for one day and then proceeded to Bhudarigram. There He was received by Sri Govinda Kaviraj who worshipped His lotus feet and offered Him all hospitality. Sri Viracandra Prabhu was very pleased at his devotion and remained there for a couple of days. Thereafter He made His auspicious arrival in Kheturi.
As soon as he received news of His arrival, Sri Narottama Thakura came out in great ecstasy to meet Sri Viracandra Prabhu. He led Him into the courtyard of the temple of Sri Gauranga where sankirtan accompanied with ecstatic dancing commenced. A steady crowd of people thronged to get a glimpse of Prabhu Vircandra. [B.R. 13]
After spending a few days in Kheturi in ecstatic sankirtana, Viracandra Prabhu set off for Sri Vrindavana Dhama. Along the way many sinful and atheistic people were delivered by His influence. As news of His arrival reached Vrindavana, the Gosvamis, namely Srila Jiva Goswami, Srila Krsna dasa Kaviraj Gosvami, Sri Ananta Acarya, Sri Hari dasa Pandita, Sri Krsna dasa Brahmacari (Sri Madhu Gopala's pujari, a disciple of Sri Gadadhara Pandita), Sri Madhu Pandita (pujari of Sri Gopinatha), Sri Bhavananda, Sri Kasisvara, as well as his disciple Sri Govinda Gosvami and Sri Yadavacarya were all informed.
The Gosvamis, accompanied by many residents of Sri Vrindavana Dhama, all came out to meet Prabhu Viracandra. Everyone was overwhelmed by His appearance in ecstatic love, and they all were humming like bumble bees in discussing His good qualities. Prabhu Viracandra, in the company of these exalted souls, took darshana of Sri Madana Mohana, Sri Govindaji, Sri Gopinatha, the principal Deities in Vrindavana. [B.R. 13]
After receiving the consent of Sri Jiva Gosvami and Sri Bhugarbha Gosvami, Prabhu Viracandra set out to wander in the twelve forests of Vrajamandala, becoming completely overwhelmed by seeing the various places of Krsna's pastimes, like Sri Radha Kunda, Sri Shyama Kunda and Giri Govardhana. His display of ecstatic symptoms captivated the Brijbasis. After seeing the sights of Sri Vrajadhama, Bircandra Prabhu returned to Gaudadesa.
All of the divine qualities of His father, Sri Nityananda Prabhu, were fully present in Him. Those who were fortunate enough to witness His ecstatic love praised His glories far and wide.
Gopijana Vallabha, Rama Krsna and Ramacandra, who are thought by some to be the sons of Virabhadra Gosai, were actually His disciples. The youngest, Rama Krsna, who resided at Khardaha, belonged to the Sandilya Gotra and was a member of the Batabyal brahmana community, known for their great accomplishment in studying the Vedas. The oldest, Gopijana Vallabha, lived at Latagram near Manakar, in the district of Barddhaman. The middle one, Ramacandra, lived at Ganeshpur near Maldah. Because their gotras and surnames (titles) were different, and because they lived at different places, it is concluded they were not actually ViraRcandra Prabhu's sons.
His birthplace is at Khardaha, which now is a rail station on the Sealdah-Krsnanagar line. The village where Nityananda Prabhu made His advent in this world - Ekacakra - is also named ViracandraRpur. Here the Deity of Sri Bankim Raya was worshipped by ViraRcandra Prabhu.
Daaso'smi, Swami Gaurangapada.
Post Author: Swami Gaurangapada Date: 2007-11-04 12:01:48
Yes, we have to find the original book with the Bengali verses then it can be translated. I will remember to try for it. Thanks Igor. Nityananda! Gauranga! Hare Krishna!
Daaso'smi, Swami Gaurangapada.
Post Author: Bhakta Igor Date: 2007-11-04 08:52:11
Nityananda Gauranga Hare Krsna
Thank you so much for posting such wonderfull katha!
Nityananda! Nityananda! We are hoping that Gurudeva will in future translate Abhiram Lilamrta so that we can read more pastimes of glorious Abhiram Thakur! (I think that problem is to find genuine bengali verses...Gurudeva wrote about that)It will be wonderfull to have this book in Nitaai Veda! Thank you once again! Nityananda! Gauranga! Hare Krsna!
Post Author: BhushanNityananda das Date: 2007-11-04 04:17:47
All Glorties to Lord Virachandra who is non different from Gaurachandra
dandavats at lotus feet of Gurudeva
Pastime of Birth of Lord Virachandra
Nityananda Charitamrita, Antya Khanda Chapter 11
Lord Gauranga instructs Nityananda Prabhu to marry
One day in Nilachala Puri Dhama, Gaurachandra Mahaprabhu discussed something alone with Nityananda.
tumi yao gaudadese karaha samsara
tabe e saba lokera haibe nistara
punaha asiba ami tomara mandire
tomara grihe habe amara avatare
bhakti bilaiya punah asiba samsara
gupu avatara sastre naheta pracara
acintya amara shakti keha nahi jane
sei se janaye tumi janaha sei khane
"Dear Shripada, return to Bengal and get married, then all the people will be delivered. I'll again manifest in Your family and stay in Your home. I'll distribute krishna-bhakti and deliver the whole world. These incarnations of Mine are secret and hidden in the scriptures. No one knows My inconceivable energies. Only You know them perfectly and others know only by Your mercy."
The following story adapted from the book "Abhiram Lilamrta" appeared in issue number 4 of Sri Krishna Kathamrita Bindu, the free fortnightly email magazine from ISKCON Gopal Jiu Publications.
Abhiram Thakur is perhaps the most prominent follower of Lord Nityananda Prabhu. According to Srila Kavi Karnapur, Abhiram Thakur is the incarnation of Sridama Sakha, the chief cowherd boy in krsna-lila. His pastimes were described in simple Bengali verse by his disciple Sri Tilak Ram Das in a book called Sri Abhirama Lilamrta. In the fourth chapter the author reveals how he was able to write:
utha utha ore sisya sunaha vacane
amara yateka lila karaha varnana
eta bali mora sathe carana dharila
carana parase lila svarana haila
[My guru Abhiram Thakur came to me while I was resting and said] "Wake up! Wake up! O disciple, hear my words! I want you to write about my pastimes." I touched my head to my guru's lotus feet and at that time all of his pastimes appeared to me. [Texts 5-6, 13]
The following story, adapted from chapter 15, verses 141-246, describes how Abhiram Thakur tested the newborn sons of Lord Nityananda.
Abhiram Thakur was a very powerful personality. It is said that he would sometimes test the authenticity of a salagrama-sila or a deity by offering obeisances. If they were not genuine, they would break. He had other uncommon powers as well.
On one occasion Abhiram Thakur met Nityananda Prabhu on the bank of the Ganga, near to the home of Nityananda Prabhu. Nitai offered Abhiram a seat. They embraced, and both sat down.
Nitai said, "O brother Abhiram, what is your desire? Why have you come to My home?"
"I want to see Your son."
Hearing this, Nityananda became happy. However, when Nityananda Prabhu showed him His son, Abhiram offered obeisances to the child and immediately the child died. When Nityananda Prabhu's wives Vasudha and Jahnava heard the news, they both fainted. Nityananda then placed the body of the child in the Ganga and they all took bath.
Sometime later, another child was born, and again Abhiram Thakur came. As before, when Abhiram offered his obeisances, the child died. Everyone was astonished, thinking, "What is Abhiram's purpose?" In this way, every time a child was born, Abhiram would come, offer obeisances, and the child would die.
Although Nityananda Prabhu is the Supreme Personality of Godhead Lord Balaram, still, while acting out His human-like pastimes, He externally became very unhappy seeing all of His sons die. Therefore, when the next child was born, Nitai thought to Himself, "If Abhiram does not come My child will live."
Nityananda Prabhu invited many quests for the festive occasion, but He did not invite Abhiram Thakur. Seeing that Abhiram was not there, Adwaita Acharya inquired from Nityananda, "Why have You not invited Abhiram?"
Nityananda Prabhu replied, "Abhiram has made Me bereft of sons. So I will not invite him. I've told all of the boatmen not to bring him across the Ganga in their boats."
During the time of the festival for the birth of Nityananda Prabhu's latest son, Abhiram and his wife Malini were staying at Krishnagar. Vakreswar Pandit came to see them. Malini offered him a seat, and Vakreswar inquired from Abhiram, "Nitai is performing a festival on the occasion of the birth of his son. You are the pradhana-gopal, the leader of the cowherd boys. Is He inviting you or not?"
Abhiram laughed and said, "No. He is not inviting me."
Vakreswar humbly told Abhiram, "Without your presence this ceremony cannot be performed properly. Although He is not inviting you, still you should go."
"How can I go without an invitation?"
Malini then said, "Abhiram is a rakhal, a cowherd boy. Such cowherders have no abhiman, false ego. He is not finding fault with Nityananda Prabhu for not inviting him."
Abhiram Thakur then told Vakreswar, "O brother, I'll go there later." After Vakreswar left, Abhiram conceived a plan. He bade Malini goodbye and started off, saying, "Gaura Hari ki jaya!" He went to the bank of the Ganga and said to a boatman, "Take me across!"
The boatman looked at Abhiram Thakur and inquired, "Who are you sir? Give me your name and then I will start the journey. If I take the wrong person across then Nityananda Prabhu will be very angry with me."
Abhiram replied, "Why does He want to restrict this person from crossing?" The boatman said, "Nityananda Prabhu is miserable and lamenting for His lost children. He told me, 'There is one person named Abhiram Thakur. He is very powerful. If he offers obeisances to My son then the child will die.' Saying this, Nityananda Prabhu told me not to bring that person across. I think that you are that same Abhiram Thakur."
Out of fear of Nityananda Prabhu, the boatman then put water in his boat and made it sink. Hearing that Abhiram Thakur had come, all of the other boatmen also filled their boats with water and sank them.
Abhiram Thakur then took some cloth and threw it in the river. The cloth floated, and, sitting on it, Abhiram crossed the river.
Seeing this, the people became astonished and ran to tell Nityananda Prabhu. Although Nitai became worried, He took all of the mahants who were present at the festival and went to meet Abhiram Thakur. Abhiram saw them all performing ecstatic kirtana and coming toward the bank of the Ganga to meet him. Abhiram then began playing his flute, and he lost external consciousness. Tilak Ram Das says, "Who can understand Abhiram Thakur?"
PRASAD AT NITAI'S HOME
When they came together, Abhiram embraced all of them with ecstatic love while his hairs stood on end. Nitai brought Abhiram into His home. Abhiram told Him, "I am very hungry. Please give me some prasad." Nitai gave him a seat in a room and Vasudha and Jahnava happily brought him nice prasad consisting of sweet rice, fancy rice and many opulent dishes. As much prasad as they brought, Abhiram ate it until he had finished everything in the house.
Seeing that he had eaten everything, Nitai said, "Dandavats to your pastimes! Who can understand You? In vraja-lila you are Sridama. Have you forgotten our loving relationship? In Vraja we all shared prasad together. But now, forgetting all of that, you are taking all of the prasad alone. In Vraja we would always share whatever fruits we got. What sort of behavior is this that you are taking all of the prasad alone?"
Abhiram listened and said, "My nature is that of a cowherd boy. First I take, then I give to others. My behaviour is that of Vraja. Knowing my nature and activities in Vraja, how can You say I took all of the prasad? Go and see Your pots." Then Abhiram performed acaman.
Nityananda Prabhu went to see the pots and found that double the original amount of prasad was there. Nitai then happily embraced Abhiram.
Abhiram said, "O brother, you should feed all of the mahants."
The mahants then happily took prasad and shouted, "Hari! Hari!" Finishing, they all performed acamana. Then Nitai gave them tambula and a place to take rest.
"SPARE OUR CHILD!"
Abhiram Thakur said, "Nitai, You have celebrated a festival for the birth of Your son. What sort of son do You have? Please bring him and I will offer my obeisances to him."
Hearing this, everyone became worried. Nityananda Prabhu's wives Vasudha and Jahnava approached Abhiram and humbly said, "This time please give protection to our child. Don't let us be criticized for not having a son. If you offer obeisances to our son then he will die. Every time this is what has happened. If you do this again, then we will also die."
Abhiram said, "Why are you fearing? You don't understand. I am offering my obeisances to test the child. If he is svayam-svarupa, the Lord's personal manifestation, then he will survive my obeisances."
Hearing Abhiram's words, Nityananda Prabhu became happy and brought His son before Abhiram. Abhiram Thakur offered his obeisances, and the child laughed. Abhiram become very happy and offered his obeisances a second and a third time, just to test the child. He saw that this child was jagat-priya, dear to the entire universe. Abhiram took the child on his lap and began to dance. He then told all of the mahants there:
ye na dekhecha gora dekha ara bar
punarbar sei gora vira avatar
"So that those who did not see Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu could again have the opportunity to see Him, the Lord has reappeared in the form of Virabhadra Prabhu."
THE IDENTITY OF VIRABHADRA PRABHU
Lord Balaram has appeared as Lord Nityananda Prabhu. As the Supreme Lord, He is sarvajna, all- knowing. Hence He certainly understood and, in fact, inspired the behavior of Abhiram Thakur. The nature of the Lord is that He likes to see His devotees glorified more than Himself. Therefore, to glorify His devotee Abhiram Thakur, and also His son Virabhadra Prabhu, Lord Nityananda inspired Abhiram Thakur to act in such an unusual way.
Virabhadra Prabhu is the incarnation of Kshirodakasayi Vishnu. Srila Kavi Karnapura has written (Sri Gaura-ganodesa-dipika text 67):
sankarsanasya yo vyuhah payo-visayi-namakah
sa eva viracandro 'bhuc caitanyabhinna-vigrahah
The expansion of Lord Sankarshan known as Kshirodakasayi Vishnu appeared in Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu's pastimes as Virachandra Prabhu. Lord Virachandra was non-different from Lord Chaitanya Himself.
As Kshirodakasayi Vishnu, Virabhadra Prabhu is the svayam svarupa, the plenary expansion of Lord Nityananda Prabhu. Srila Krishnadas Kaviraj has described:
garbhoda-sayi ca payobdhi-sayi
sesas ca yasyamsa-kalah sa nitya-
nandakhya-ramah saranam mamastu
May Sri Nityananda Rama be the object of my constant remembrance. Sankarshana, Sesa Naga and the Vishnus who lie on the Karana Ocean (Karanodakasayi Visnu), Garbha Ocean (Garbhodakasayi Visnu) and ocean of milk (Ksirodakasayi Visnu) are His plenary portions and the portions of His plenary portions. [Cc. adi 1.7]
Srimad Birchandra or Birabhadra Prabhu took birth within this world on the ninth day of the dark moon in the month of Kartik, which corresponds to the divine appearance day of Sri Srimad Bhakti Raksaka Sridhar Maharaja.
aspiring to be humble servant