Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya Carita | Book 1 Chapter 5

Fifth Sarga

The Appearance of Śrī Caitanya


O brāhmaṇa, please hear attentively about the unique appearance of that ocean of compassion, the all-pervasive and sense-controlled Supreme Master of the cosmic manifestation, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu.


When Nārada, the chief of demigod sages had departed for His own āśrama, the infallible Lord, who possesses infinite opulences, entered within the mind of the brāhmaṇa sage, Śrī Jagannātha Miśra.


By virtue of the Lord's presence, in due course of time, the chaste and saintly Śacī Devī conceived Jagannātha's powerful seed within her womb.


She became pregnant with the expansion of Śrī Hari, as the blessed Gaṅgā river bore the potency of Śiva. Her lustre increased day by day like the waxing moon.


When Jagannātha Miśra saw his wife becoming filled with great beauty and a lustre like molten gold, he felt blessed with much opulence, and his heart exulted.


Seeing Śacī in such an exalted state, the demigods headed by Brahmā and others such as the gandharvas, the immortals, together with Indra took to the skies.


Tears filled their eyes and choked their throats out of jubilation, and with folded hands and bowed heads, they offered these prayers all blissfully.


"I bow down to you, O Aditī, mother of Śrī Hari. Your womb is effulgent like the moon, sun and fire. By your pure and patient pregnancy, you maintain the Lord.


"Your pregnancy is free from envy and blessed with all perfection. Indeed yours is the womb of the Vedas, and You personally give birth to Lord Hari in His every incarnation, becoming Devakī, Rohiṇī, and Yaśodā.


"In your womb You bear He who will spread the process of yajña named saṅkīrtana. The saṅkīrtana-yajña has great purificatory potency unobtainable through the Vedic process of yajña.


"If even persons such as ourselves hear but for a split-second such kīrtana of Kṛṣṇa's names as Lord Nṛhari will bring, they can achieve love for Him. Such love is unattainable even by the performance of millions of fire-yajñas.


"Oh, how wonderful! In ancient times Śrī Hari in His form of Mohinī-mūrti, personally awarded me amṛta after we devas had churned the Garbhodaka ocean with the asuras; yet this hari-nāmāmṛta is a million times superior.


"Now through our ears we shall drink rasāmṛta as we hear the glories of Śrī Hari. In comparison with such kīrtana my heart considers even liberation insignificant."


After conversing in this manner, Indra with the devas offered respectful obeisances to Śacī Devī. Then placing Brahmā at their head, they departed for their own abodes singing the glories of Śrī Hari.


Śrīpati's expansion was about take birth on earth. Thus the gods jubilantly lauded the good fortune of the people of Kali-yuga and danced, overwhelmed by prema.


At the auspicious full moon night of the month of Phalguṇa, when all virtuous qualities of men were in attendance, and a breeze bearing pure fragrances blew, when the minds of gods and godly men were tranquil, when the waters of the sky- river Gaṅgā were crystal-clear, then did Śrī Hari took birth by His own wish.


Śrī Jagannātha Miśra Purandara saw His son's eyes as blossoming lotus flowers, His face like the effulgent full moon and His complexion like gold. By the child's potency, darkness in all directions was dispelled. Jagannātha found no limit to the mellifluous ocean of love he felt for his child. He felt just like a pauper finding a vast treasure, and since his voice was choked with love he was unable to speak clearly.


Just after the Lord's birth, Rāhu impudently swallowed the moon, considering the beauty of the moon had been utterly defeated by Śrī Kṛṣṇa's beautiful lotus face. Thus while entering the mouth of that enemy of the gods, the moon appeared to disappear.


At that auspicious time, all people performed kīrtana of Narahari. With much eagerness they offered worship, took bath, distributed charity, and bathed, cleansing themselves from sin in holy waters of Jāhnavī-Mā.


The hosts of Suras headed by Indra as well as Brahmā and Śiva rejoiced and apsarās danced with sublime excellence, while on earth great-hearted social dignitaries showered gifts of charity on deserving persons.


Since he was aware of the auspicious time at which His daughter's son had taken birth, Śrī Nīlāmbara Cakravartī who was learned in all śāstra, felt joyous on account of the Lord's birth. Quickly he went to the āśrama of his son-in-law, and called for Jagannātha Miśra and Śacī Devī. That very thoughtful gentleman said:


"O how astonishing! This child has taken birth just on the apex of the orbit of Jupiter, the planet of Śrī Guru. By this indication I understand that lion amongst men shall give eternal protection to all people.


"He possesses noble character. Indeed, His character is the original shelter of all virtues. By becoming the topmost of all renunciates, He shall bestow love on all living beings, just as the full moon floods the night sky with nectar.


"This person shall perpetually award deliverance to the dynasties of His father and mother." Hearing the brāhmaṇa speak thus, all the people present became overjoyed.


Hearing these words from her father, the child's mother felt very happy, and Jagannātha Miśra, feeling much affection for his son, performed a great festival to celebrate his birth.


Then he distributed pān, sandal pulp, garlands, and scented oils to the brāhmaṇas. As his son grew, he performed in natural sequence the various auspicious ceremonies, at time of the boy's first standing up and so forth.

Thus ends the Fifth Sarga entitled "The Appearance of Śrī Caitanya," in the First Prakrama of the great poem Śrī Caitanya Carita.