Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya Carita | Book 2 Chapter 15

Fifteenth Sarga

A Description of the Ecstatic Moods of the Gopīs as Bhakti-Yoga


In a delightful and melodious tone, Gaura Kṛṣṇa falteringly uttered some glorious words of nectar, "Bhagavān Varāha-deva, whose form is personified sacrifice and who resembles a great mountain, has embraced Me.


"In My heart Halāyudha resides. In His hand He holds a flute , and the edges of His eyes are black with collyrium." Hearing the Lord speak in this way, the hearts of the learned and great-hearted brāhmaṇas became inspired, and in exultation they danced.


Then Lord Kṛṣṇa laughingly spoke to Śrīvāsa, "Now bring Me My transcendental flute." Then that Paṇḍita replied, "Great Lord, that flute is within Your dwelling, carefully guarded by the daughter of Bhīmaka.


"At this time Your Lordship's flute is not available, for it is night and the flute is kept within a cabinet within the house." Hearing this, the guru of the people laughed loudly. Thus He passed the night with His bhaktas.


 In the early morning, after bowing before Śrī Hari, those leaders of the twice-born joyously walked to take bath in the midst of the sky-river. Then after offering their daily worship to the mūrti of Śrī Hari, they accepted His prasādam and thereby felt supreme delight.


A man who hears of these very playful pastimes of the enemy of Murā becomes fully delivered out of the ocean of birth and death which is filled a host of material maladies and one who recites them swiftly attains affectionate attachment for His lotus feet.


For a man thus absorbed in contemplating Śrī Gaurāṅga's lotus feet which are tended by Kamalā, the splendid ocean of love shines ever more brightly, and his mind becomes captivated by that youthful gopa of the name Kṛṣṇa, having taken shelter at His feet.


Once the sense-controlled great Lord with His moon-like face and smile of nectar dressed Himself in sublime women's attire and performed a drama with His associates in the courtyard of Candra-Śekharācārya.


First the great brāhmaṇa, Śrīvāsa Paṇḍita, the elder brother of Śrīpati Paṇḍita, radiantly appeared on stage as the great Nārada, sage amongst the gods, and son of the unborn Lord Brahmā. Falling down like a rod on the ground before the unconquerable son of Śacī, he offered obeisances in surrender.


Then Lord Gaura said gently to the brāhmaṇa, Gadādhara, "Please have faith in this story of mine, O Gopikā! Once in ancient times you bowed down your body and humbled your heart at the feet of this Nārada, sage amongst the gods. You said to him `Master, I have abandoned the service of the feet of my father and mother just to render unalloyed service to Śrī Śyāmasundara Kṛṣṇa's lotus feet. Kindly bless me. Let the mercy flowing from the lotus feet of that ocean of mercy descend on me.'


"After you uttered such trusting words to him, Nārada replied with a jubilant countenance, `O Apsarā, bathe with fixed attention for one hundred times a hundred months of Māgha within the waters of the river of the sages.


"`Then it will be possible to render pure service to Kṛṣṇa's lotus feet.' Because your grace strictly followed the muni's instructions, you have presently taken birth in the land of Gokula within this world.


"The sage Nārada has attained a super-excellence of Hari-bhakti which is very rarely attained throughout the length and breadth of the three worlds. He has become wet from bathing in the myriad waves of the ocean of spontaneous prema- rasa. It is such bhakti as this which Śukadeva extols with joy.


 [Here follows verse 63 from the Forty-Seventh Chapter of the Tenth Canto of Śrīmad Bhāgavatam:] "Śrī Śukadeva Gosvāmī said, `I forever praise the foot-dust falling from the feet of the milkmaids who dwell in the land of Vraja where Nanda is king, because their songs describing the pastimes of Śrī Hari purify the three worlds.'


"How can I praise adequately the glories of Hari-bhakti? There was once a brāhmaṇa's son named Ajāmila, in whose character every variety of vice was abundantly present, and who was thus awaiting immense suffering in his future lives. However, simply by uttering the name of `Nārāyaṇa,' although he was thinking only of his son, he departed from that hellish fate.


"By the power of the holy name of the Lord, Ajāmila and all those associated with him could surmount the insurmountable ocean of birth and death to attain the abode of the ocean of mercy, Lord Nārāyaṇa. And how much more is liberation assured for one who renders favourable service to the unborn Lord?"


After Śrī Gaura, the jewel of the brāhmaṇa community, had thus spoken, the hearts of those eminent twice-born men became greatly enlivened until they overflowed with rasa and quickly became drenched by the waves of the prema-sāgara.


A single ray of Gaurāṅga's moon-like toenails is sought after by the foremost of sages and the gods headed by Brahmā. Accepting the role of a human being, He performed fully spotless pastimes while chanting the nectarine names of the Vraja- gopas and gopīs. Therein histories such as Śrī Gadādhara's former life as an Apsarā were revealed.

Thus ends the Fifteenth Sarga entitled "A Description of the Ecstatic Moods of the Gopīs as Bhakti-Yoga," in the Second Prakrama of the great poem Śrī Caitanya Carita.