Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya Carita | Book 4 Chapter 23

Twenty-third Sarga

The Pastimes of Nityānanda


When Nityānanda Prabhu arrived in Navadvīpa, He at first felt an intense eagerness to see Śacī Mātā. Entering her home, He bowed down close to her feet, saying, "O Mother, I am very pleased to come and see you!"


Hearing these words, she quickly took His head in her hands and kissed it again and again, addressing Him, "My dear child!"


She said sweetly, "Dear child, please stay in my house, for thus I can always look at You and become free from sorrow."


Laughing loudly, Nityānanda replied to her, "Hear Me, Mother, I tell you truly: Along with My younger brother, I forever live by your side.


"Since Śrī Kṛṣṇa's lips thoroughly savour the food you cook, I always stay in your presence out of greed for tasting it."


Hearing this, Śacī Devī laughed and offered to Him all the foods which she had prepared. There was very fine cooked rice, soup made of dahl and vegetables, plus various sweets such as sweet rice. All of these foods had a very wonderful flavour. While the lover of His devotees, Śrī Nityānanda, ate laughing in the company of His younger brother (who was indeed present), Śacī Mātā gazed upon Their lotus faces.


 Seeing Rāma and Kṛṣṇa eating, she became merged in a sea of joy. Nityānanda, the ocean of mercy, glanced at her and said, "Mother, tell Me now. Were My words true?" She replied, "Dear child, Your words are as true as the words of Īśvara.


 "Still I wish that I could always see You and Your younger brother." Nityānanda replied, "Dear Mother, whatever you may order Me, it is always My duty to fulfil it with gladness."


Thus Nityānanda, the bestower of all bliss, stayed in the house of Śacī and created transcendental happiness for the residents of Navadvīpa.


He inspired all men to taste the rasa of munificence and service to the name, as taught by Kṛṣṇa Caitanya Mahāprabhu, and as He danced with His associates, His heart was filled with the joy of Gaurāṅga-kīrtana.


His body was anointed by fragrant scents and sandalwood paste, and He was dressed in a garment of deep blue colour. He was decorated by ornaments of gold, silver, coral and other precious substances.


His fully blossomed lotus-like mouth was fragrant with camphor and betel. He held a copper staff, and He was further ornamented by a silver necklace holding the Kaustubha gem.


That illustrious Lord wore a single earring, and He was decorated by a garland of forest-flowers. He held a flute in His hands, and He sang incessantly of Śrī Gaurāṅga's qualities.


Seeing His fine ornaments, all the bands of thieves and dacoits made many attempts to steal them.


Feeling great compassion for them, Nityānanda Mahāprabhu transformed them from murderous dacoits into men wholly absorbed in relishing the nectarine bliss of Gaurāṅga-kīrtana.


Thus Nityānanda took His pleasure as a Gaura-bhāvuka, one who madly experiences the ecstatic emotions and transcendental moods taught by Kṛṣṇa Caitanya, and He performed many kinds of sportive pastimes as a cowherd boy.


Overflowing with affection for all, Nityānanda Prabhu travelled along the bank of the Gaṅgā, visiting the homes of His bhaktas and tasting bliss. Once, He visited the home of Kṛṣṇa Dāsa, who was a resident of Baa-gāchī. Having attained the unattainable Supreme Personality of Godhead as a guest within His home, Kṛṣṇa Dāsa became filled with joy and danced while waving his upper garment.


That town known as Baa-gāchī is most pious, for in that place Nityānanda-svarūpa enjoyed many pleasure-pastimes.


Then, surrounded by His devotees headed by Kṛṣṇa Dāsa and Rāma Dāsa, and revelling in the bliss of kīrtana, Nityānanda approached Śrī Navadvīpa.


In company with those gopālas, Nityānanda made the three worlds fully satisfied through the chanting of Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya's names, just as it had formerly been in the land of Vraja when Nanda ruled as king of the cowherds.


Nityānanda's love for Śrī Gaurāṅga was the very energy which sustained His life.

He was surrounded by associates who inundated the world with the nectarine rains of Kṛṣṇa-kīrtana. They were decorated by staffs for herding cows, various kinds of flutes, buffalo horn bugles, and strands of red guñjā berries.

In their company He who is none other than the original Baladeva, and who formerly played the pastimes of a cowherd in Vṛndāvana, displayed that same form to the world.

Thus ends the Twenty-third Sarga entitled "The Pastimes of Nityānanda," in the Fourth Prakrama of the great poem Śrī Caitanya Carita.