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Indradyumna Swami’s Parikrama 2018 in Vrindavan and Mayapur Dham with Bada Haridas

Indradyumna Swami Parikrama
Indradyumna Swami 2018 Parikrama in Vrindavan and Mayapur Dham
PART 1 : VRINDAVAN : OCT 24TH to NOV 8TH 2018

PART 2 : MAYAPUR : NOV 9TH to NOV 23RD 2018

Welcome to Indradyumna Swami’s Parikrama. Indradyumna Swami and Bada Hari Das will be taking devotees on a special journey of pilgrimage, in Sri Vrindavan dham and Sri Mayapur dham in the most auspicious month of Kartik 2018. Join them!

 

Registration – 2018

 Registration for Kartik Parikrama with Indradyumna Swami is now open!

nityananda-vata

Nityānanda vata – HH Indradyumna Swami & HG Caturātmā Prabhu – Parikramā Realizations

The Glories of Parikramā

– By HH Indradyumna Swami & HG Caturātmā Prabhu

HH Indradyumna Swami Mahārāja:

Mother Śītalā said the other day, when she was beginning her talk on the disappearance of Śrīla Prabhupāda; she began by saying, “This is going to be painful”. Like that it’s always hard to say good bye. Of course there is a famous quote from my good friend ŚrīPrahlāda. At the end of every festival program on Baltic-Sea cost, he would say that, “There is only one good thing about saying ‘Good bye’, and that is in the future, we can say ‘Hello’ again”.

In my mind I am already thinking of Kārtika 2016, for some new places to go; like Badrikāśrama way far out at the end of Vraja; some other forest, we haven’t visited and  some of those 60 billion holy places that we haven’t seen yet. How many of you would like to join us next year?

Also because of the internet we have all these videos posted and they are being shared everywhere and I think we are going to exceed even Rādhānātha Swami’s Parikramā party, by something like maybe 60 thousand people! [Laughter]

But for now we are sharing our memories and realizations. I take these events quite seriously, so this morning I was preparing a little bit by taking out this year’s itinerary. We have that itinerary on the website and I printed it out; all the different places that we visited from A to Z. I was thinking what days I would like to comment, what events I remember, what precious moments and so forth.

“Oh there was Kāmyavana!” I thought about that for a while, to make a few notes on Kāmyavana. Then there was Mathurā, all the temples I remember that and I want to talk about; then MadanaMohan temple up there on the hill; then the program at GokulānandaNarottama Dāsa Ṭhākur’s Disappearance day, and then there was first GovardhanParikramā that we walked— ran. Then all of sudden I realized that I had like 15 pages of notes, far too many to speak on today. At that moment I had a realization and my mind went back to polish festival tour on the Baltic Sea cost. At the end of every festival we have this big Kīrtana, where all the people, especially the children, dance in front of the stage. It’s kind of competitive, but at the end we invite all the kids to come up, which numbers around like 50 or 100 sometimes. The children come up and we give all of them presents; we give each girls a silk Sāri and they are like dumbfounded. They just love it and never forget it. You know it takes some time to give 100 little girls – Sāris and the boys – sweets. But you know in the mean time, the master of ceremony is interviewing each little child, so “Did you like the festival?” “Yeah!” “And what was your favorite part of the festival?” Like this 10, 15, 20 kids are interviewed before all the girls have their Sāris on; and then we conclude the show.

My Polish is as bit as my Russian— about 4 – 5 words.  So when we started this, they asked the little girls and all the kids were saying “Wszystko!” I keep on hearing this word “Wszystko” and after 4, 5 festivals I looked around and asked what this “Wszystko” mean? A devotee said, It means “everything”. The little girls when they were asked what did you like? They said, “Everything!”

As I had my notes of 15 pages I realized, I was writing down every single place we went, every single thing that happened, and every single thing that we said. I realized that about our tour this year, I liked “Wszystko!” – I liked ‘everything’. But we are supposed to share few outstanding moments, so I don’t want to take too much time, because there are many speakers. For me the main thing that stood out was:  On the first Parikramā we went to Kāmyavana, and that beautiful gorgeous all merciful compassionate red colored deity of Vṛndādevī, I just can’t get it out of my mind; because it was just an overwhelming experience to me, to see that historic deity of Rūpa Gosvāmī. It’s so big and so red and so merciful. I just remember her, I hope I shall remember her when I leave this body; I hope that Saṁskāra, that impression stays in our heart.

Then we went to Mathurā, and you know at Mathurā I was expecting to see Kṛṣṇa killing Kaṁsa and fighting CāṇūraMuṣṭikaKuvalayāpīḍa; but what I saw was Varāha. [Laughs] Because Varāha has a very intimate relationship with Mathurā, as we discussed, I won’t be talking about it again but, the big black deity of Varāha and the big white deity of Varāha–“Wow!” that was so amazing.

Then at MadanaMohan up on the hill there, I had many rounds to make up, so I was sitting back a little bit; and I couldn’t hear much more of what it was, but watching Caturātmā’s animated lectures, like Italians they speak with their hands; so I could understand everything he said by sign language. Then you know we kind of split up with some devotees and we moved unto Sanātana Gosvāmī’s Samādhi. I am now an old guy, I don’t play Mṛdunga so much anymore; but I picked up that Mṛdunga and I received so much enthusiasm, inspiration; so that’s one of my favorite places in Vṛndāvana and we had 2 hours Kīrtana there.  That Kīrtana at Sanātana Gosvāmī’s Samādhi was so wonderful!

Then we did the first Govardhan Parikramā, and at one point we were so enthusiastic we started running, literally running and it was captured by Ananta Vṛndāvana, put on that particular video at the end as one of the climactic scenes, in that everyone is running; he captured that running around Govardhan hill.

Also when we came here for the first time, and put Jīva Gosvāmī’s beads around my neck, I got to speak by wearing those beads.  I thought I was just garlanded by mercy, so I had to say something significant.

Then at Jaipur, when we went for ParikramāDarśana of the Deities, I tried to position myself so that I could watch all of you coming and see Govinda. I had a quick Darśana of Govinda but I wanted to see many of you who were there for the first time; I wanted to see your faces when you saw Rūpa Gosvāmī’s Govindaji and then, all the people chanting with so much love and so much devotion and that atmosphere was just like Goloka and just to see your spiritual senses come alive, it was so satisfying. And then the Harināma we had at the lake of blood –Kurukṣetra. Do you remember those lakes? That were created from blood of out of the 21 generations of disobedient Kṣatriyas that Paraśurāma killed. We decided to have a Harināma there and I was thinking, “Harināma! But there is like nobody out there.” So I said to Kālasamvara, “We can’t have Harināma with nobody?” He said, “No! There are 33 million demigods.” “Ok let’s go”, and that was such an ecstatic Harināma we had, Kālasamvara is leading, Prahlāda, for me that was a very memorable moment.

When we visited Tālavana that big beautiful deity of Daujī and telling that story about Dhenukāsura was so much fun. Śītalā’s lectures painful as it was on Śrīla Prabhupāda’sdisappearance day, actually I couldn’t stay but I was listening from the other side of the wall. But Prahlāda said, it was the best disappearance day lecture that he had ever heard.  Then Prahlāda gave some really good lectures, I mean everyone was outstanding, but my favorite was his lecture he had at Kṛṣṇa Kuṇḍa about Rādhārāṇī. How he started out with Tattva you know the basic elements of truth and expanded into the pastimes. Like you can see why he is one of the main professors now at the University of Sydney. He is a good speaker but that was saturated with so much devotion.

Then Caturātmā’s 44.43 minutes superfast lecture a couple of days ago at Yavat; He did it. He had prepared maybe a 2 and half hour lecture but he spoke so fast that he got all points included in 44.43 minutes.  On my watch I was actually keeping time, and he looked back and he smiled at me, “I did it”. [Laughter]

I want to give him a gift, not only for that but just you know for giving everything jolly and talkative and sharing all the fun that we had on this month; Because older devotees, god brothers— they are in charge of all of you, just to make sure that you have a good time in Kṛṣṇa Consciousness. I am especially indebted to the senior god brothers and god sisters; so I thought I would give him a really nice present and it’s not the Govardhan Śilā, he had enough of those. When I got this present from the Sādhu, these ancient wooden beads, he said, “I would like to have that”. Wow! That’s pretty bold. [Laughter] But as they say in the English, “fortune favors the bolds”. [Śrīla Gurudeva offered the neck beads to Caturātmāprabhu]

I really appreciate Baḍa Hari Prabhu’s initiation lecture. He has not realized it now because we were just moving so fast, 2 of us for the last 3 years and he doesn’t realize where it went. Actually for the last 3 years he has given all the initiation lectures. I ask, “Can you give an initiation lecture?” “Aha, Yeah OK.” But then I realized, I was having him do all of them because it’s so good. He also gives all the marriage lectures, I just sit back, I give my blessings, and I get the donations [Laughter].

It was really fun having my son Gaur Śakti, joined us for a few days; he is on facebook right now here looking at this lecture so you can all give him a big round of applause – Gaur Śakti!   [Claps-Haribol] I call him Śaktipāda, so he really enjoyed this and also said, he will be coming back again next year. He keeps reminding me when I say, “go to this place in India and that place”, he says, “Pita (father), why go anywhere else? Just stay in Braja, everything is in Braja.” So he has realized this. Haribol Śaktipāda!

Another indelible memory that etched in my heart is, how we start, how we set the stage. It is so important to set the mood properly to absorb the Dhāma, how Mādhava prabhu so expertly and devotionally and melodiously began each program with his Kīrtana every day. You all kind of moving and wrestling and as soon as his Kīrtana starts everyone is just focused on the mood of Braja. We are so indebted to Mādhava prabhu. [claps –Haribol]

All these things: the personalities, the places, the Kathā, the Kīrtana, they create the SaṁskāraSaṁskāra means a deep spiritual impression in the heart that just doesn’t go away. It’s just like, unfortunately when I was young and some of my god-brothers were young— we heard all these songs from the 60s & 70s, and you know sometimes they pop in the mind, “Oh No!” They are just like bubbles that come out of mud, they come to the surface of the mind, but they are material impressions. While spiritual impressions are much more powerful and much more important and if we keep going on Parikramā every year, we go back and we keep preaching, then these Saṁskāras, they will come to our mind again and again. Maybe when we leave this body— one of these holy places, one of these lectures or one of Baḍa Hari Prabhu’s Kīrtanas will then take us Back home back to god head; that’s Saṁskāra. So don’t forget. If you think of the past, then think of this last month, and in the coming year when things may be getting a little difficult, like some opposition in the preaching, you are alone in your apartment in a cold and dark – winter evening, or you are frustrated doing 5 hours of homework or you are on a long tedious plane ride, you are dealing with some family problem, some disciple problem- then remember all these moments of this month and you will get strength, inspiration and hope.

In conclusion because we want many devotees to speak I first in foremost would like to thank Śrīla Prabhupāda, by whose invitation alone, we are here today.  He could have easily stayed here; he took Sannyāsa and as a Sannyāsī he had right to retire to the Dhāma; he could have stayed here and just immerse himself in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, but he took it upon himself the order of spiritual master to leave this wonderful place, this wonderful world of Kṛṣṇa consciousness and go to hellish – MlecchāDeśaYavanaDeśain the West, to bring all of us back here, future generations as well. Therefore we are all indebted to Śrīla Prabhupāda.  Whenever you receive a gift you have to say – Thank You; and if you receive the greatest gift, you have to give the biggest ‘Thank You’. I think the biggest ‘Thank You’, the expression of gratitude that we can offer to ŚrīlaPrabhupāda is to go back and bring other people here, people who are suffering, who are in misery, who are bewildered, wake them up in Kṛṣṇa consciousness and whatever time that takes, bring them to this wonderful Dhāma so they can also have the Vṛndāvana experience; that’s the best way we can reciprocate with Prabhupāda’smercy. I would also like to thank specially my God-brothers & God-sisters who so much contributed to the Vṛndāvana experience:

  • Baḍa Hari Prabhu!  [Applause: Claps, Haribol!]
  • Madhumaṅgala (Caturātmā Prabhu)! [Applause: Claps, Haribol!] He looks pretty good with these beads on.
  • Ghoṣa Ṭhākur!  [Applause: Claps, Haribol!]
  • Manyu Prabhu! [Applause: Claps, Haribol!]
  • Gopa Swami Prabhu! [Applause: Claps, Haribol!]
  • Ṭhākurāṇī (Mother Śītalā Prabhu)! [Applause: Claps, Haribol!]
  • And best apple crumble maker in the whole universe- Mother Viśeṣa Prabhu! [Applause: Claps, Haribol!]
  • I am very much grateful to my disciples, Govinda Caraṇa & Rasikā for their super excellent management, what can I say! [Applause: Claps, Haribol!]
  • Our translators so that our translation would be understood, so Murāri Kṛṣṇa Prabhu, Uttama-śloka! Barsānā Rāṇī! Dulāli! [Applause: Claps, Haribol!]
  • The Sound Team, they have done wonderful job! [Applause: Claps, Haribol!]
  • The man who never sleeps, Ananta Vṛndāvana! [Applause: Claps, Haribol!]
  • We would like to thank Rāmāi Paṇḍita, Dhaniṣṭhā and Vṛndā for keeping my house the head quarter together during the whole show. [Applause: Claps, Haribol!]
  • And all the cooks who cooked wonderful Prasādam! Prasādam was pretty good this year right! The Prasādam that you had most of the days on the Parikramās! [Applause: Claps, Haribol!]
  • Thanks to Vṛndāvana TV  for airing our program for the greater Vaiṣṇava community. [Applause: Claps, Haribol!]
  • Once again to Mādhava & Baḍa-Hari Prabhu, they had just such amazing Kīrtanas,that took us to Goloka immediately[Applause: Claps, Haribol!]
  • To all the Vrajavāsīs in Vṛndāvana, past, present and future; who make this wonderful abode, what it is. [Applause: Claps, Haribol!] That includes the cows, the buffalos, the butterflies, the bees, the dogs even the pigs. [Applause: Claps, Haribol!] Even the monkeys! [Applause: Claps, Haribol!]
  • We would like to thank again the 5 personalities, who we spoke so much about to grant us entrance into and hopefully one day residence into Vṛndāvana. [Applause: Claps, Haribol!] These are Gopeśvara Mahādeva, Vṛndādevī, Paurṇamāsī, Govardhan Hill, and Yamunā.
  • I would like to give a special thank you once again to all of you without you it would be nothing! [Applause: Claps, Haribol!]

There is a saying in English, “We are all that we have”. We were on the Polish tour, I sometime mentions my favorite thing is to sit at the gate, you know the entrance to the festival, where people can’t really see me, and I just watch them coming with great expectation, and the looks on their faces when coming in to get their first experience of this wonderful world of Hare Kṛṣṇa’s, and to see them that is my greatest pleasure.   They are brand new, but they got a little taste on the beach of an invitation or Harināma and they are coming like, “Wow I want to experience this Hare Kṛṣṇa!” and thus watching them walk by, that’s the greatest joy of my life actually. Sometimes I actually feel like offering my obeisances to them. What would the festival of India be without them? Actually ultimately as George Harrison famously said, “Everyone is devotee of Kṛṣṇa, some realize it and some don’t”.  There is something special about the birth of the newborn baby, so there is something special about seeing the conditioned soul take their first infantile steps as unconscious as they are, unto the path of devotional service, Kṛṣṇa Consciousness.

Here in Vṛndāvana the other side of that experience is that 2 headed coin – preaching and the Vṛndāvana experience. Here my greatest pleasure was watching all of you awakened to the wonderful world of Goloka Vṛndāvana, right here centerfold in this holy abode of Vṛndāvana. I just loved watching your faces, how you were swaying in the Kīrtana and dancing and listening so attentively, just absorbing everything; for me that was my Vṛndāvana experience.

We can do this again next year and for many years to come, I will consider it my greatest honor to serve all of you in this way again. It is kind of hard to offer my obeisances to the people because they might see me, I have done that for few times; but I can easily offer my obeisance to all of you.

[Śrīla Indradyumna Swami offered obeisances to all of audience]

vāñchā-kalpatarubhyaś ca kṛpā-sindhubhya eva ca

patitānāṁ pāvenebhyo vaiṣṇavebhyo namo namaḥ

Gaur Bhakta Vṛndā ki – jaya!

Śrīla Prabhupāda ki Jaya!

Kārtik Parikramā – 2015 ki – Jaya!

Kārtik Parikramā – 2016 ki – Jaya!

Jaya-Jaya Śrī Rādhe ……………………………….Śyāma!

‘Spasiba Bolshaya!’ [Big Thank You]

Hare Kṛṣṇa!

[Applause: Claps Haribol]

 

HG Caturātmā Prabhu:

This is about appreciation and realizations and I had 2 particular groups of persons that I really felt in spite of everyone else having said so many things, that I have also wanted to give my appreciation to them; and that is once again our management team. I mean all of you who are experiencing your Vṛndāvana Parikramā only through this medium, you have no idea but everything was taken care for you so nicely; and so many endeavors and so much effort and so much arrangement and finagling was done just to make it such a wonderful experience for you. Having managed couple of temples and couple of Rathayātrās and festival of colors – big events like that, I know it can really be a headache working all that out.

Maybe you didn’t get the room partner that you wanted; maybe you didn’t like the particular bus you want; maybe Prasādam came a little later than you wanted that day;  but let me tell you, this management team of 5 or 6 people have done absolutely astounding Job. I take the dust of their feet on my head any day of the week.

Now all of you have your bag-pack, your little bag you are carrying with you every day, right? You know we all are dressed up nice & warm in morning and what you need in day you could shove in that bag and that bag gets little heavier. Well way before all of you get ready on the busses this group of men right here, they are at Gurudeva’s house shifting these equipments up & down from the roof every morning and every afternoon, endlessly just to get it here ahead of all of us.  Up the rocky hills of Barsānā, down onto the slopes of Kṛṣṇa Kuṇḍa, into the court yards of Gokula, anywhere we go by the time we get there, they have already got there and set everything up, so just like that. I am very grateful personally to all of you.

Realizations are of 2 kinds, those personal intimate realizations that motivates on our devotional service that we keep to ourselves and those realizations that are pertinent to the collective effort to become Kṛṣṇa conscious. 1st one I won’t speak about because it’s not the appropriate. But of the 2nd group there are 2 particular realizations I had this year. One of this I spoke about several times when devotees would ask me. How do we see Vṛndāvana? I mean I look around and I don’t really see the Vṛndāvana that we are reading about and hearing about in the Śāstras? But that’s the problem; we are trying to see Vṛndāvana with our eyes. We don’t see Vṛndāvana with our eyes. We don’t see, as Gurudeva says, as 60 million holy places with your eyes. See them through your ears. Because by seeing with the ears, which means as we hear about these places our heart becomes cleansed; and when the heart becomes cleansed then with the actual spiritual eyes, we began to see things in that perspective. This is how we see Vṛndāvana – ‘premāñjana-cchurita-bhakti-vilocanena’ [Bs. 5.38]. When our vision is quoted with love that comes from purified heart and that heart became purified by hearing from the saintly persons.  This is the essential understanding in coming to Vṛndāvana and trying to see these holy places.

The 2nd realization I had dealt with something equally profound things. In observing all of you and reading Ṭhākurāṇī’s manuscript that I share with many of you that comes in the evening – things about Narottam, I noticed one particular thing. Loving emotions and exchanges of friendship and appreciation and deep concern for each other, these are all real. These are not false sentiments that we give up as the materialistic concept and try to become, staunch in devotional service. The hearts and feelings of all of our Ācāryas, were genuinely soft and filled with love and compassion for each other. This is the type of relationships that we should have in our own dealings with each other. I am very fortunate to senior god brothers that are very much caring and loving with me like that. For me it was kind of nice, because it wasn’t just like, “Oh I am some sentimental old fool” and that just how I am; but I could see that this is actually how relationships between devotees and devotional service really are. So for all of you, I thank you very much for giving me that impetus and helping me get that realization; and I simply pray that the future of our lives is built upon this year after year after year after year. With your blessings I pray that, may I be able to come year after year after year after year. Thank you very much.

[Applause: Claps, Haribol!]

javat

Javat – HG Caturātmā Prabhu – Lecture, Indradyumna Swami’s Parikrama -2015

Rādhā & Kṛṣṇa’s Pastimes in Yavat

– By HG Caturātmā Prabhu

Just one thing before we start. Over the last month we have been together, I have seen the variety of tears during Kīrtana;  and all I can say is this—If we can’t cry here, where are we going to cry? Okay, so this place of Yavat, one of my absolute favorite places all over Braja; and there are unlimited pastimes to speak about what takes place here at Yavat. But as is the nature of this world we are governed by the time factor, particularly me. We will start off with this nice wonderful prayer. “Jaṭilā Devī is Rādhārāṇī’s mother-in-law, and Abhimanyu is Rādhā’s so-called husband. Kuṭilā Devī, who is always eager to find faults, is Rādhārāṇī’s sister-in-law. Abhimanyu doesn’t realize the value of the diamond he has in his care. Any ways Kṛṣṇa doesn’t care, neither does Rādhārāṇī.”

In Alachua we have this sweet cook, and she is the best sweet cook around. Whoever you know who makes milk sweets, she makes them even better. She takes fresh cow’s milk from her own cows, makes her own curd and then cooks easily the most wonderful squishy Rasagullās you have ever had. But the level of her skill is that she does one thing further than this. She takes a couple of unexpected ingredients and adds them to the Rasagullās, camphor and black pepper. Now camphor and black pepper are not particularly known for their sweetness, but when you mix them properly by an expert cook, the combination gives the most amazing flavor, and it makes sweetness even sweeter.

The pastimes in Yavat here are comparable to this sweetest of Rasagullās, because they involve the sweetness of Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa’s pastimes, which are the sugar in the Rasagullā. But an added ingredient not so much thought of, namely, Abhimanyu actually makes it even sweeter. This so-called husband of Rādhārāṇī is the camphor, and black pepper which, when added in their proper proportions, make the whole pastime even sweeter. As followers of Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī, we always refer to Abhimanyu as the so-called husband. You will hear that phrase being used many times while discussing pastimes involving them. This is the place of the Līlā of Rādhārāṇī’s household life with that so-called husband Abhimanyu, and his ever attentive, and watchful mother Jaṭilā, and even more overbearing sister Kuṭilā. As Gurudeva said, these are three main obstacles to the enjoying pastimes between Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa. We know, if there is something that you desire, and there is an obstacle put in front of that, well, you are going to try that much harder to fight it.

Now Yavat, like all of Braja that we have been visiting, looked a little different when these Līlās were taking place at that time. We are instructed that the truth of Yavat and the pastimes of Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa are very sublime and are concealed from ordinary people. But by the good fortune of pure Vaiṣṇavas and those who are following them, we are able to enjoy these pastimes by speaking about them and hearing about them. Our Ācāryas,they describe the Yavat pastimes as RasaYavat was built by King Vṛṣbhānu; it’s a wedding present for his daughter, and the palace [is] for the son-in-law to be and to exist very happily. Of course, as a father, he desired that his daughter would live somewhere close in her married life, not so much far away like Australia [like Caturatma das’ daughter]. Anyway, he built Yavat in such a way that it was very spacious and very aesthetically pleasing. There are many wide alleys, very palatial buildings. It was beautifully decorated and every convenience that anyone would need was found here in Yavat. Now all of Rādhārāṇī’s girlfriends, who would also have been married, they all moved here and lived with all their husbands in Yavat as well.

The overall area of Yavat was blessed at that time with many banyan trees. There are also 15 specific Kuṇḍas that surround this area that are related particularly to the pastimes of Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa here at Yavat. There is one Kuṇḍa with a special selection of Kadambatrees there, indicating that the pastimes there are most sweet. There is also the spot in Yavat where Rādhārāṇī planted a Pārijāta tree and watered it and nourished it till it grew and gave flowers and then took those flowers and made garlands for Kṛṣṇa. She would give those garlands to Him when He would sneak and see Her here in Yavat.

Another thing to know about Yavat, this is the place where the Gopāṣṭamī pastime takes place also. Yet, because Rādhārāṇī was forced to live here as the so-called wife of someone other than Kṛṣṇa, She saw it as a prison, a prison from which She was constantly trying to escape. Actually it was prison for both Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa. She is always trying to get out, and He is always trying to get in, and, you know, if you have a really good prison, nobody can get in, nobody can get out. Every night, She would climb up to the moon tower. This tower here you can actually go up. There is a place with Her lotus feet, and she would look across the fields to Nandagrāma and pine, not knowing that Kṛṣṇa was also on a tower over there looking in this way and pining also.

Why would Vṛṣbhānu Mahārāja ask his daughter Rādhārāṇī to marry Abhimanyu? We do have to understand that this marriage takes place here in Gokula Dhām and not in GolokaDhām. It takes place here for the sole purpose of facilitating the deep Bhāva of ParakīyaRasaRādhārāṇī never considers Herself married, neither does She give Her heart to Abhimanyu. At best it’s just a facade of a marriage. Actually the marriage takes place during the one year after Brahmā stole the cowherd boys and Kṛṣṇa had expanded Himself into all the different cowherd boys including Abhimanyu, so She actually married KṛṣṇaThe real answer lies in the fact that this relationship, Svakiya Rasa, the wedded relationship, is not considered the highest enjoyment. Instead it’s a Parakīya Rasabetween the Divine Couple that is seen as the topmost pleasure. Personalities like JīvaGosvāmī and many others have delved into this with great detail, something that I am not qualified to do and won’t even attempt.

There is a second reason why Vṛṣbhānu had Her married. In his subconscious deeper understanding he wanted to facilitate the desire for Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa to be together, because this brings the highest happiness to Rādhārāṇī. As a father, he wanted unlimitedly Rādhārāṇī’s best happiness. But as a father to facilitate that is completely Rasā-Bhāsa, so therefore he arranges for the marriage of Rādhārāṇī to Abhimanyu. I mean after all, She is a suitable young girl who needs a husband and he seemed to be a suitable husband. In this way, the rules of a so-called marriage go on.

Abhimanyu has a variety of words that are used to describe him. None of them are very flattering: dull-witted, dumb, unappreciative of the real jewel he has, not knowing the value of the diamond in his care. Abhimanyus real wealth is from cows, so instead of spending most of his time with Rādhārāṇī, he spends most of his time in the barn with the cows. As a result, his wife, Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī doesn’t get the type of attention She deserves. Some of you ladies maybe experienced husbands not paying close attention, like, “I know about that.” But the reality, as Gurudeva said, earlier is that Abhimanyu is actually the shadow of Kṛṣṇa. As you know, His expansion from when the cowherd boys were stolen. From the spiritual point of view, the wives are also shadows, so these cowherd men, they never actually touched their wives. They are touching the shadows, and in this way they are all saving themselves, and Kṛṣṇa is their only husband.

There is a real nice pastime which Śrīla Prabhupāda explains in the Nectar of Devotionabout Abhimanyu. One day, Abhimanyu was returning home from herding the cows, and he didn’t know Kṛṣṇa was already inside the house—something Kṛṣṇa always tried to do and occasionally was successful [in]. Seeing Abhimanyu coming, Kṛṣṇa quickly assumed the dress and the appearance of Abhimanyu, and he went to Jaṭilā and addressed his mother Jaṭilā looking like Abhimanyu and with the same voice as Abhimanyu, “My dear mother Jaṭilā I am your son Abhimanyu, but Kṛṣṇa has assumed my dress and is coming towards the house posing as me. This rascal is trying to gain entrance to our home. You should deal with Him. I am going to take Rādhā into Her quarters and close the doors from the inside and keep Her safe. In this way, I will protect Her.” As Kṛṣṇa is the most expert of dressers and knows the voices of all the animals, it’s not hard to imagine [that] he pulled this off really successfully. Jaṭilā was convinced that he is indeed the real Abhimanyu, so the anger she felt is now about to be taken out on her real son. First she got Kuṭilā and then locked the door from the inside. They climbed up to the roof of the house, and they collected several very, very large and soft balls of cow dung. Now, if you step on a dried-up cow dung paddy, this is not such a big deal, but if you step on a wet one, “Yahhhhha”—so big wet balls of cow dung.

Abhimanyu came to the house, went to open the door; door is locked, so he called out, “I am home, I am home. Can somebody open the door? Can I be received properly?” Jaṭilācalled out, “Oh yes, you rascal, we will receive you properly.” As the confused Abhimanyulooked up to see what his mother was talking about, “Splat! Crash!” [laughter]. Very big large soft cow dung balls sailed down from the top of the house and landed on top of his head. In confusion he thought, “Who is throwing these cow dung balls on me?” He looked up and saw it was his mother and sister, so he screamed, “Mother, what are you doing? Don’t you see who I am?” “Yes, we know who you are. You are a big rascal. You are the debauchee Kṛṣṇa, and we are going to punish you.” She threw more cow dung balls down, so lying there on the ground, it covered all of his nice clothing and his hair. Turban covered in cow dung, he looked up and he thought, “The women of this house have gone mad.” “Mother, Mother it is me, your son, Abhimanyu.” “We knew you would say that; that proves you are Kṛṣṇa!” Splat! Crash!

Abhimanyu concluded, “They have been possessed by ghosts,” and he went to Mathurāto get accessories so that they could be saved. At this point Jaṭilā came down and got one of those cleaning brooms, not one of those little soft ones that you use to sweep the floor, but the really hard stiff ones you use for scrubbing with. She opened the door and started to chase Abhimanyu. Now, when she first opened the door, he felt, “Okay, she returned to her senses. She is going to open the door and greet me and let me come in and clean up.” But instead, she comes out of the door with her broom raised, “You rascal, get away from our house.” She begins chasing him as he runs off to Mathurā to get an exorcist. Seeing this all, the girlfriends of Rādhārāṇī who were present began to smile, showing just a portion of their teeth. Nectar of Devotion describes this type of smiling as, hasita—smiling.

Now there was another time when Kṛṣṇa assumed the dress of Abhimanyu. This is something He does often, and unlike the jokes which I tell to Indradyumna Swami during our lunch-time, His dressing is always successful and it always produces a good laugh. Once Kṛṣṇa dressed as Abhimanyu, and His cowherd friend Raktak noticed this. Even from when I was a young Brahmacārī, Raktak was my favorite cowherd boy. He is green. Anyway, Raktak saw that Abhimanyu was there. What’s Abhimanyu doing mixing with us?[he thought]. And he started to rebuke him with some very choice words. Here are a couple of men who know how to use these choice words, but I think they have taken a vow for Kārtik and don’t use them. In this way, after a little bit of this he suddenly realized, “Wait, this is just Kṛṣṇa dressed as Abhimanyu,” and he began sweating a little uncomfortably. Prabhupāda describes in Nectar of Devotion that this type of sweating is brought on by fearfulness. Now, one thing to know about Jaṭilā; she has this big Jata. She has these matted locks on her head, all piled up really high. It is described like this because her mind is just like that, also completely entangled on top of her head. Plus, she is half-blind and this just adds to the enjoyable pastimes. You can imagine, trying to sneak and hide around someone who is half-blind, can’t even see you; so that’s Jaṭilā.

Over at Nandagrāma, early one morning, mother Yaśodā had one very large box, and she was packing this box with all kinds of beautiful ornaments and clothing and silks and perfumes and cosmetics. Kṛṣṇa went into the room and said, “Ma, what are you doing with this box? Why are you packing these things in here?” “Oh, my little boy these are just some presents, for someone very, very special and dear to Me.” “What are you packing in it, Ma? What are you packing? What’s going in the box?” Mother Yaśodā said, “O, why do You need to know? Just go out and play with Your friends.” “I really want to know, Ma. If you don’t tell me, I am just going to stand here and keep asking you until you do.” Being filled with love, but a little reluctant to tell Him the whole thing, Mother Yaśodā went ahead and told Him, “All right, if you must know, I am putting in the box, camphor, lotus, red kumkum, sandalwood sticks, and musk for making different types of perfumes. For making uncommonly beautiful dresses, I am putting in various ornaments that are made of tinkling bells, red lapis lazuli, gems, extremely valuable clothes, earrings, bangles, emeralds and pearls. Dear, are You satisfied now? Now go outside and play with Your friends.” “No! I want to know if this box is for Me or Balarāma?” “I have already packed two large boxes for You and Your brother.”

Kṛṣṇa then said, “Well, who besides Daujī and Me could be very, very special to you?” To this question, Mother Yaśodā then paused, closed her eyes thinking and then answered very nicely, “My dear son, as a result of past pious deeds and many austerities, providence has restored upon me a son like You and a girl who is powerful tonic and sustains my life. This girl, the soothing camphor for my eyes, is the shelter of extraordinary feminine qualities: good behavior, beauty, simplicity, humility. Before You ask me who this girl is, I will tell You. Her name is Śrī Rādhā and Her husband Abhimanyu is meeting Your father.” Now at this point, Yaśodā got distracted because the jeweler, who is making crowns for Kṛṣṇa, had come to the house, and she had to go and talk to him. So she turned to Dhaniṣṭhā and said, “You keep an eye on this box until I get back. You know in a little while Abhimanyu will come, and he will take this box with him when he is finished meeting with my husband.”

Upon hearing these final words, Kṛṣṇa devised a plan. As soon as Yaśodā left, He emptied all the contents of the box, and he climbed in the box. He entrusted the contents to Dhaniṣṭhā to hide them so they wouldn’t be found. Now you remember, she is very cooperative, so once He is inside, He has Dhaniṣṭhā to ensure to close the lock and secure it. A little later, Yaśodā returned with Abhimanyu, presented him [with] the box and gives him the following message that he has to give to Śrī Rādhā, “Oh, fame of Kīrtidā, I have sent You a box full of wonders. You should use these wonders to daily ornament Yourself and dress Yourself. May You forever be happy, radiant and fortunate with these gifts.” Abhimanyu thanked Yaśodā a hundred times and with some difficulty, he put this heavy box on his head and set out on the long road back to Yavat. Now very strange things happened when Abhimanyu was carrying this box. He finds himself filled with joy, a joy that he has not experienced from all the wealth that he has got. His body gets goosebumps, his eyes becomes moist with tears.  Well, of course, this is all because he is in the touch with the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the source of all bliss, right there on his head. In the meantime, Kṛṣṇa, who is in the box, can barely contain His laughing at the fact that Abhimanyu is carrying Him to meet Śrī Rādhā.

Breathlessly, Abhimanyu finally enters the house and tells Jaṭilā about this wonderful box that has been sent by Yaśodā for Śrī RādhāJaṭilā was reflecting on the wealth that must be in the box, and there really is a wealth in this box. She thinks, “Oh, with this present, my daughter-in-law will finally be happy with my son,” so she instructs Abhimanyu, “Go ahead and take this to ŚrīRādhā’s quarters. She is in Her room sulking.” Abhimanyu carries this box up and finds indeed there is Śrī Rādhā in Her room sulking. Now an interesting thing happens, as he totters in the door almost losing his balance, leaning forward, this wave of bliss flows out from this box engulfing all the Gopīs in the room including Śrī Rādhā, and Śrī Rādhā Herself begins to twitch on Her left side.

It is described that this box, being placed in the room, was perceived by the Gopīs as if the Sun Himself had entered into the room. Rādhā turned to Lalitā and She said, “I feel my mother-in-law’s house is like a prison, but why do I suddenly feel happy and notice my left side is twitching? Just seeing this box brings Me great happiness. I can’t imagine how happy I will be when I open it.” All the cowherd girls, they clatter around the box and encouraged Rādhā, “Stop what you are doing and open the box right now.” It is described that as Rādhārāṇī approaches the box and reaches out to touch it, a wave of amorous blissful desire completely engrosses Her like a bolt of lightning coming from a rain cloud. As a result, She pulls Her hand back and is a little suspicious, “What is in there?” But all the girls are pressing Her forward, until She actually agrees, “Okay.” She unlocks the box and throws back the lid.

When She throws back the lid, the instant it’s opened, Kṛṣṇa whips up, standing up inside the box with His hands thrown into the air. Then He places His hands on His hips and looks around the room with His eyebrows dancing up and down. The Gopīs all exclaimed, “Hah! What is this?”  Extremely pleased with His own trickery, Kṛṣṇa jumps out of the box, revolves around the room, and kisses each one of the Gopīs. Having a rare opportunity to be inside of Śrī Rādhā’s quarters, He began to investigate everything in the room. Laughing in great pleasure, Lalitā repeated the loud message of Yaśodā and exclaimed, “Well, it is true, this is a glorious gift. But YaśodāJaṭilā and Your husband have all ordered You to wear this gift.” Rādhā began to blush, and all the Gopīs cheered at this, and then Rādhā got a little angrier. She began to wag Her finger at Kṛṣṇa. She was addressing the girls, chastising Kṛṣṇa, “This thief has stolen all of My gifts in this box, and before He could get out of the box, My husband has brought Him here. Go and get Jaṭilā and tell her about this.”  In great joy, Lalitā joins Her in the front. “You rascal, stealing Rādhā’s gifts. You are dedicated to ruining the chastity of all women on this earth. Have you no shame?” Kṛṣṇasaid, “No, no. This isn’t true at all. There was this nice empty box at Yaśodā’s quarters and it was all padded and I thought, ‘Oh, what a great place for a nap.’ So I climbed in and went to sleep and someone closed the lid, and here I am.” In this way, the GopīsKṛṣṇaand Lalitā and Rādhā they go back and forth, back and forth for some time, playing different types of word games. Finally, all the Gopīs leave the room, leaving Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa alone. That’s how they enjoyed their enriching pastimes of love here at Yavat.

I leave you with one prayer, “I bow to the marital home of Śrī Rādhā. The walls of this house kept Rādhā from meeting Kṛṣṇa. Therefore She considers it like a dungeon and every brick to be a source of misery.” So may we all keep these handfuls of pastimes eagerly in our hearts.

Śrī Yavat Dhām ki- Jaya!

Śrī-Śrī  Rādhārāṇī ki –Jaya!

Śrī Kṛṣṇa ki –Jaya!

Gaura Premanande – Haribol! [claps]

Being on time –ki [Laughs: Ha-ha-ha-ha]

javat

Javat – HH Śrīla Indradyumna Swami – Instructions

Praying to kalpa-vṛkṣa: for pure devotion

– By His Holiness Śrīla IndradyumnaSwami

This is the ancestral home of Abhimanyu, his mother Jaṭilā and his sister Kuṭilā. There are beautiful deities of AbhimanyuKuṭilā & Jaṭilā just over here. They are very unique personalities, they create lot of trouble for Kṛṣṇa, lot of obstacles for Kṛṣṇa, but it’s always in the mood of increasing the mellow of the Rasa for Rādhā and Kṛṣṇas pastimes; that is their Sevā. If there is some obstacle to the meeting, then when the meeting finally takes place, it’s even more relishable. That’s the theme in a lot of Rādhā & Kṛṣṇas pastimes. This will be elaborated on this morning by, His Grace Caturātmā Prabhu.

And there are also very beautiful Deities of Rādhā and KṛṣṇaRādhāKānta are the Deities’ names, RādhāKānta, very ancient RādhāKṛṣṇa Deities.

We talk a lot in Vṛndāvan about the desire trees. It’s an important part of the history in the culture.

cintāmaṇi-prakara-sadmasu kalpa-vṛkṣa-

lakṣāvṛteṣu surabhīr abhipālayantam

[BS 5.29]

In that verse from the Brahmā-Saṁhitā, we hear the name kalpa-vṛkṣa. The kalpa-vṛkṣatrees are personalities who live in Vṛndāvan, who fulfill the desires of devotees, who request various objects for use in the service of the Lord. You can approach a kalpa-vṛkṣatree and ask for some item that you can use in Kṛṣṇa’s service. As we were explaining the other day, the kalpa-vṛkṣa trees are very mystical, they don’t just give one object, like apples, or oranges, or bananas, they can give all types of fruits, all types of vegetables, all type of flowers. They can even give cooking utensils, clothes, whatever is required for the pleasure of Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa.

It’s very much the tradition of those who go on Parikramā for the last thousands of years, when they come across a kalpa-vṛkṣa tree, especially a kalpa-vṛkṣa tree of this nature—this tree was here 5,000 year ago; actually, Kṛṣṇa climbed up unto this tree trying to get into the palace. This is a very special kalpa-vṛkṣa tree. Devotees, they hug the tree and you reveal your heart:

  • How you would like to serve Rādhā & Kṛṣṇa;
  • What you require to do that activity.

Whatever the spiritual desire that you have can easily be fulfilled by a kalpa-vṛkṣatree.

I recommend before you all leave today, you give this kalpa-vṛkṣa tree a big, warm, tight embrace and reveal your heart, and be careful not to mix material desires in it. That would be disastrous.

na dhanaṁ na janaṁ na sundarīṁ

kavitāṁ vā jagadīśa kāmaye.

mama janmani janmanīśvare

bhavatād bhaktir ahaitukī tvayi

We just pray for pure devotional service. This is a wonderful opportunity here at Javat, very sacred isolated place.

Actually this is the last day of our Parikramā. Tomorrow we cancelled the VṛndāvanParikramā because I am not that well and also I have lot of things to do before we leave Vṛndāvan. So this is actually our last Parikramā Day.

But of course we will be meeting on the 25th at Nityānanda Vat, the Śrīngāra Vata. We will have a fantastic program, and we will speak our memories and our realizations. Don’t lament, it’s not over. That’s a very special event as well.  That’s the 25th, day after tomorrow. We will leave from outside of my house on the Parikramā Mārga. So please relish every moment of this transcendental day. Mādhava Prabhu, who so kindly graced our Parikramā party this month, will sing Kīrtana, then Caturātmā Prabhu will speak about the glories of this place in detail.

Then that transcendental walk, through the BrajaReṇu, through the dust of Vṛndāvan, through the fields of Vṛndāvan to Ter Kadamba!  There Baḍa-Hari Prabhu will lead us in Ṣaḍ-Gosvāmī Aṣṭakam, the prayers to the six Gosvāmīs, and Ṭhākurāṇī Śītalā Devī Dāsīwill speak on the glories of Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī. Who could ask for a better day than this? This way you have so many precious memories in your heart to carry with you throughout the year. If your memory is not so good, you can have that USB drive, with all of these 14 or 15 videos of Ananta Vṛndāvan; and there is always Kārtik 2016.

Śrī Yavat Dhām ki – Jaya!

Śrī-Śrī  Rādhā Kānta ki – Jaya!

Śrī Braja Bhūmi Śrī Vṛndāvan Dhām ki – Jaya!

Kārtik Parikramā – 2015 ki – Jaya!

Kārtik Parikramā – 2016 ki – Jaya!

Kārtik Parikramā – 2017 ki – Jaya!

Jaya-Jaya Śrī Rādhe ……………………………….Śyāma!

Hare Kṛṣṇa!

tera kadamba

Tera Kadamba – HG Baḍa Haridāsa Prabhu – Preface, Indradyumna Swami’s Parikrama -2015

Preface to Śad-Gosvāmī Aśtaka

– By HG Baḍa Haridāsa Prabhu

Hare Kṛṣṇa,

We are here at the very beautiful Tera Kadamba, where Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī wrote Bhakti-Rasāmṛta-Sindhu. Many wonderful pastimes happened here. We will hear more about those from Śītalā Devī. We want to sing these beautiful prayers to the six-Gosvāmīs, by Śrīnivas Ācārya! Anyone of you familiar with these prayers? Not so many. Okay, actually Śrīla Prabhupāda one time said, “By studying these prayers we can understand the internal mood of the Spiritual Master.” These are in Sanskrit, they are pretty long, but it’s not too hard to follow. You will probably recognize some of the words. We won’t go through all of the translations. We are going to give you just a little bit of an idea.

It begins: kṛṣṇotkīrtana, so this is actually three words: kṛṣṇa, uta, kīrtana. These Gosvāmīsare the greatest scholars that had ever lived. They were not dry scholars. They were loudly chanting the names of Kṛṣṇa; so ‘kṛṣṇotkīrtana gāna’—and they are singing and dancing— ‘nartana’; and ‘premāmṛtāmbho-nidhī’—they are just like an ocean of love of God, of Prema. Then ‘dhīrā and adhīra-jana’—dhīrā means sober or what you could say saintly people; and adhīra—just the opposite, strongly stated here is ruffians. Like the people you meet at Woodstock, they are in the adhīra category [laughter]. But even to these people ‘priyau’—the Gosvāmīs are very dear even to such people. That’s the nature of saintly people, that even kind of rough characters liked them. Why is that? ‘nirmatsarau’because they are not envious of anyone.

They were all trying to eradicate from the hearts the disease in the material world, which is envy. Saintly persons are free from this envy and so naturally everyone loves them. One time the devotees told Śrīla Prabhupāda, ”Śrīla Prabhupāda, everyone loves you,” and he said, “Yes, because I love everyone.”

Next ‘śrī-caitanya-kṛpā-bharau’—they are carrying a huge burden.  What is that burden?‘śrī-caitanya-kṛpā’—it means the mercy of Lord Caitanya. Are you familiar with that word—‘kṛpā’? Then ‘bhārāvahantārakau’—they are pleasing to everyone. They are fully blessed by Lord Caitanya.

Therefore, each line after glorifying the Gosvāmīs in various ways; the last line is concluded with ‘vande rūpa’—my obeisances to Rūpa Gosvāmī, ‘sanātanau’—unto Sanātana Gosvāmī, ‘raghu-yugau’—the two Raghus, meaning Raghunātha Dāsa Gosvāmīand Raghunātha Bhaṭṭa Gosvāmī, ‘śrī-jīva’Jīva Gosvāmī, and ‘gopālakau’ GopālaBhaṭṭa Gosvāmī. So we can sing this line together:

vande rūpa-sanātanau raghu-yugau śrī-jīva-gopālakau

[Everyone in Chorus]:

vande rūpa-sanātanau raghu-yugau śrī-jīva-gopālakau

Hey, I think you know the tune already, but let’s do one more verse quickly.

Next ‘nānā-śāstra’—so what does śāstra mean? You’ve heard that word, right? Śāstra means scriptures, so ‘nānā-śāstra-vicāraṇaika-nipuṇau’—they are singularly expert, extremely expert at studying the scriptures.

Then ‘sad-dharma-saṁsthāpakau’—and they were ordered to establish ‘sad-dharma’ or true religion. They are ‘lokānāṁ hita-kāriṇau’—that means the well-wishers of the whole universe; and ‘mānyau śaraṇyākarau’—they are worthy of taking shelter of. Actually Prabhupāda said, “We are Rūpānugās”; so they are our shelter, especially Rūpa Gosvāmī.

Next: ‘rādhā-kṛṣṇa-padāravinda-bhajanānandena mattālikau’—they are always absorbed, just like mad in love for Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa.

Again I ask you, as we sing these songs try to kind of look at the translations, and understand what we are saying and connect to the feelings and then glorification which has been given here. This is a wonderful place to pray for the mercy of Śrīla Rūpā Gosvāmī.

[Kīrtana: Śrī-Śrī  Ṣaḍ-Goswāmi-Aṣṭaka]

tera-kadamba

Tera Kadamba – HG Śītalā Mātāji – Lecture, Indradyumna Swami’s Parikrama -2015

Life sketch of Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī

– By Her Grace Śītalā Mātāji 

[Maṅgala Caraṇa Prayers]

Here we are in one of the most extraordinary places in whole world. Although it is a little bit late, and we have been going on, it would be very good if we could all try as hard as possible to be very present in this special place.

We are here in Śrī Vṛndāvan Dhām which is described by Śrīla Bhakti Vinod Ṭhākur. He says that, the whole Dhām is Cintāmaṇi—it’s touchstone. It yields all desires. This Dhāmis full of knowledge and bliss and is completely spiritual. The water, the land, the trees—everything in the Dhām is spiritual, unlike the dull matter of this material world. Always present in the Dhām are Kṛṣṇas three spiritual energies—SandhinīSamvit and Āhlādinī. The Dhām acts eternally as a support for the Lord’s appearance and activities. All this is an action of the inconceivable energy of the Lord which is anti-material and completely transcendental. Just think of that, for a moment, being present in this situation where we are, and really deeply considering where we sit. Because in the Dhām, not only are we in this Cintāmaṇi Dhām, as described by Bhakti Vinod Ṭhākur, but we are in a very, very special section of that Dhām.

It is actually described that there are five types of Dhām:

  1. Of course we know the original Goloka Vṛndāvan Dhām.
  2. And then there is Bhaum Vṛndāvan DhāmBhaum Vṛndāvan refers to when Kṛṣṇa was actually present here at that time; it’s absolutely non-different from Goloka.
  3. But after Kṛṣṇa leaves, then there is a Dṛṣyamān Dhām. This is a Dhām that most of us are a little more familiar with. It’s a Dhām that has a little filter over it, little covering. It’s the same Dhām, but depending on our consciousness, we may get some dim rays reflecting through that film that covers the Dhām.
  4. Another type of Dhām is where the pure devotee resides.
  5. And the fifth type of Dhām is the heart of a pure devoteeThat’s why we come to these Bhajan placesAlthough Vṛndāvan  Dhām is so special, even more special are these places where Bhajan by great souls like Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmīhave been performed. This is where Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī spent so much time and poured his heart, which is a Dhām, into his writings and into this whole environment here. It’s still here; it ripples through time and space and continues to touch our heart. This environment is so special.

People are really interested in cleaning up the environment nowadays, which is a good thing. But even if they got rid of every last bit of garbage in this world, it would still be a completely polluted place. Because of the sound vibrations and activities of the living entities that are permeating everywhere, especially now in these days when the internet is going on everywhere, and everything is contaminated even when it looks pretty. But here we should absorb in this environment because this is as clean as it gets. This pure environment where such a great saint performed his Bhajan, we need to just absorb itAbsorb the environment, let it go into ourselves so that we become clean inside and out.

Of course, it is not only the place of Bhajan, but it is a place of incredible, amazing daily pastimes of the Lord. It’s actually the first meeting place in the morning of Rādhā andKṛṣṇa. Every morning, this is still going on. This is it. Like in the old days, every morning the meeting happens first here. As we heard the other day, it was explained how Mother Yaśodā really wanted Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī to cook for her Kṛṣṇa, because of those special blessings and benedictions from Durvāsā Muni. Every morning, She passes this way with Her Sakhīs and Her girlfriends on the way to Pāvan Sarovara where She cooks Kṛṣṇa’s breakfast every morning. Meanwhile Kṛṣṇa wakes up and He comes out before breakfast with His cows and His cowherd friends. They come here to frolic and wrestle and milk the cows, and graze the cows—right here every day, in this beautiful area, under these trees here. This is a moment when it’s just the opportunity to get quick sidelong glances at each other.

Kṛṣṇa would be milking the cows, apparently oblivious to those ankle-bells that are starting to get louder and louder as they approach where He is. Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī and Her friends are feigning indifference. They just happen to be walking by, but glancing over—Lord Kṛṣṇa’s milking. Sometimes Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī notices there is a bit of a mischievous look on Kṛṣṇa’s face. But He is just milking, “Tush, Tush, Tush, Tush” [sound of milking], but He hears the ankle-bells closer and closer and just at the right moment turns the teat, “Tusheee….” [sound of sprinkling of milk], right on Rādhārāṇī’s face [Laughter]. As all the Gopīs start scattering, Kṛṣṇa takes the opportunity to jump up and plant a kiss on ŚrīmatīRādhārāṇī’s cheek that nobody sees; only the parrots are very happy. But Lalitā, she is saying, “You scandal!” These are the kind of things that go on here, every morning and also in the evening.

This is Ter Kadamba, so these beautiful trees here are Kadamba trees and all these Kunjasare here.  Kṛṣṇa comes here in the evening, and this is where He calls His cows. He has a name and He has a sound in His flute and He has a call for every single cow. He calls, and sees, “Are they there?” Every cow recognizes when Kṛṣṇa is calling just them, mooing, “I am here.”  This is available to every living entity. We each have a relationship with Kṛṣṇa and He wants to call us. He is calling us but we are silent—not listening. That’s why we have to try to hear more in Kīrtana—hearing and hearing and hearing and eventually we will wake up and we will hear Kṛṣṇa. He is always calling His cows and He is also always calling all of His living entities to come home, come to Him—Time to come home.

This is an extraordinary place, where Kṛṣṇa’s pastimes are going on every day; but we can’t focus on these pastimes. It is a bit over our heads, so better we hear more about Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī, because through the mercy of these devotees, there is some slim chance that some lifetime we may actually understand something about Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa. Every year we talk about these personalities and little by little, we start to feel affection, appreciation, and feel, “How awesome it is that we have any connection with such personalities!” It takes time to understand, because we are so covered. Just like even we were there with Prabhupāda and Prabhupāda was doing miracles and magic, but somehow as the time goes by we realize more and more, “Wow! Look what Prabhupāda did!” Similarly for these Gosvāmīs, as we hear about them, we become more and more amazed by what they have done and what that has done to our life.

Just to give a sense of Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī, the kind of family and culture that he came from: he came from a highly aristocratic extraordinary family. Their lineage goes way back—very exalted devotees. Both Rūpa and Sanātana, they were very highly qualified people in every field and in every way. Very highly educated, studied in music, in so many languages—Persian, Sanskrit, Bengali, Arabic, Urdu, so many languages. They were musicians, poets—just the list goes on and on. These people were so qualified and that is why Nawāb wanted them in his government.

At this time Bengal was two to three times larger than what it is now. It included Bāṅgālādesh; that was east Bengal. It was a very large area and so as a political move, the Muslim ruler, the Nawāb said, “These people are so respected and they are so smart and everyone really appreciates them, loves them. If I can get them in my government then I will have control over this huge Bengal.” To enter into this government, running the government—and that too for the Nawāb—this was a huge sacrifice for Rūpa and Sanātana. Yet some may wonder, “Why did they do that? Such highly qualified people, great devotees, so intelligent, what are they doing with Muslim government and becoming chief ministers?” But they did that because they wanted to protect all of the people in that area. This is an indication of their character just right from the beginning. Because they gave up their cast, they gave up all prestige, everything, to do this for protecting the people in that area. They gave up all respectability. I mean nowadays, we probably may not understand. We don’t have these kinds of systems, but understand what it means just to completely lose your high cast and your position in society. In India, this is the most important thing, “Save your cast, save your family prestige, your reputation,” but they gave it all up for the benefit of the people.

Of course they had been hearing about Lord Caitanya and it was their heart’s desire to live with Him. They sent a number of letters, but no reply. But eventually Śrī CaitanyaMahāprabhu arrived in Rāmakeli and that was a major turning point in the life of RūpaSanātana and also little Jīva. It was a very emotional meeting, and Mahāprabhu said, “Finally, I have found My eternal servants.” Apparently Śrī Jīva, the nephew of Rūpa and Sanātana was there as a very small toddler, but somehow he watched this meeting from a distance, and he saw how his father and his uncles were bowing and crying and loving ŚrīCaitanya Mahāprabhu. So even he was tiny, he was also finished at that point, “I want to be with Mahāprabhu”.

It was a matter of time before Rūpa Gosvāmī was able to, was the first one who was able to run away from all this political involvement. It was a big thing. I mean you imagine a president of some country just like runs or disappears and becomes a renunciate. It was a major event. It was Rūpa Gosvāmī’s desire that he could go with Caitanya Mahāprabhu to Vṛndāvan. That didn’t happen, but they met at Prayāg, and for ten days Śrī CaitanyaMahāprabhu instructed Rūpa Gosvāmī. There is a place there called Rūpa Shiksha Sthahli, the place that Rūpa received all his instructions for ten solid days by just sitting with the Lord and getting instructions.

There is some popular book nowadays with new age people: “Conversations with God”; but this is the real conversations with God. It was actually the very beginning of the Hare Kṛṣṇa movement, that Mahāprabhu was investing everything into Rūpa Gosvāmī. It was something like Kṛṣṇa talking to Brahmā at the creation or even more: Kṛṣṇa speaking to Arjuna on the battlefield. It was even above that. Rūpa received from Lord Caitanya the whole of Prema Dharma—what is that?  At the end of the ten days Caitanya Mahāprabhugave Rūpa Gosvāmī His mission and His instructions. A lot of people you know, hanker for you know, “I wish my Spiritual Master would give me some specific instruction or some mission.” But we have to be able to take it, if it comes. What Rūpa Gosvāmī got instructions about what to do in the future – Wow! It’s awesome.

Lord Caitanya told them four things. He wanted to do four things:

  1. First was to identify, “Go to Vṛndāvan and identify the lost places of pilgrimage and excavate them.”  Now just think what that means; how do you do that? He just left everything, gave all his wealth—everything, he has nothing left. He just goes as a mendicant and Vṛndāvan, too, is a very large place.  Lord Caitanya said, “So just find all those places”, but how do you find them? There was no science, there was no technology. How do you find [them]? This is so difficult.
  2. Then not only that, you have to find a second thing: “Find all these lost Deities that used to be there.” Again, I mean, just wandering around in the forest, how do you find these lost Deities?  Then, “Don’t just find Them but build temples for Them also.” He is a mendicant, he has given away everything. There is nobody here; Vṛndāvan was a desolate place, so pretty major instruction there.
  3. Third instruction, then, was to write transcendental literature. “Write the transcendental literature under these trees here.” No fans, no computers, no paper. How do you even write? Just think about the complications of each of these things. How difficult! How did they make the pens? How did they make that palm-leaf paper? As they live under the trees, where did they store these papers when it rained? How did they do these things? These are unbelievable, but they did it.  He was supposed to write, having heard all of this from Mahāprabhu, but not just write, as Mahāprabhu further said, “You should extract the essence of all scripture and establish pure devotional service.”  That means here under these trees. How does he extract the essence of all scriptures? Also, then firmly establish pure devotional service as a goal. These are very impossible, difficult tasks that he is being asked. Even just one of them. It would be hard for anyone to take up one of these things.
  4. The fourth thing that he had been asked: “Preach the glories of the holy name and flood everywhere with Prema.”

He really got major instructions there. But they say along with the instructions comes the ability to do so. There are different ways that people become empowered to do something. Like Mahārāja was explaining the other day, how Narottama Dāsa Ṭhākur got empowered directly by Padmāvatī Devī, who gave him the Prema of MahāprabhuŚrīla Prabhupāda of course, he was empowered by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī himself, that he actually stayed in Rādhā Dāmodara and he looked out his window and He just meditated on Rūpa Gosvāmī day and night: “How to establish this movement? How to establish this movement?” He was empowered by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī to do so. My husband took the opportunity one time when he was with Śrīla Prabhupāda, he said, “You knowPrabhupāda, everybody says that Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī appeared to you and he empowered you. Is that true?” Prabhupāda just went on to say, “Oh, everybody knows that.” What a great mission they had!  Thus empowerment was necessary; without these instructions, it was impossible.

It is said that Caitanya Mahāprabhu empowered Rūpa Gosvāmī by entering his heart, because he had to assimilate all of these teachings and he had to remember everything. I mean I can’t remember what I said a second ago. He was sitting and listening for ten days and he was not taking notes. He had to assimilate and he had to remember everything and so Mahāprabhu entered his heart in order to make this task possible.

Then,  although Rūpa Gosvāmī didn’t want to leave Lord Caitanya’s sight, but Lord Caitanya said, “No! Now you go to Vṛndāvan,” and He was going to Purī. “You go to Vṛndāvan and then come and see me in Purī after some time.” It takes a few months to walk there and a few months to walk back, you know, it wasn’t a little thing. It was going to take some time before he saw Him again. But Rūpa Gosvāmī did go to Vṛndāvan for the first time, and really there was just Lokanātha Gosvāmī, Bhugarbha Gosvāmī and also there was a Subuddhi Rāya, and Subuddhi took Rūpa Gosvāmī around whatever they did know. Lokanātha Gosvāmī and Bhugarbha had been trying to find some places, some of the sacred places. Then Rūpa Gosvāmī went to see Mahāprabhu in Purī and while he was in Jagannātha Purī, he stayed with Haridāsa Ṭhākur. You picture that—what kind of Bhajanthat was going on there. Haridāsa Ṭhākur and Rūpa Gosvāmī living together! That’s also why the Siddha Bakul place is such an auspicious place to go, to chant and sit, because these two great souls were doing their Bhajan there. Although both of them were so elevated, neither one of them went to the Jagannātha temple. They were both so humble and they were just always, “We are so fallen! We won’t go!” They followed the social custom at that time. Thus, the Lord came out of the temple in the form of Śrī CaitanyaMahāprabhu and came to their house every day; so taking the humble position is never a loss, you are never the loser.

Indradyumna Mahārāja told this pastime maybe in the Kurukśetra, where Mahāprabhushowed the glories of Rūpa Gosvāmī when he found that leaf that was stuck into the roof at Haridāsa Ṭhākur’s house. It was after the Ratha-Yātrā celebration, when Mahāprabhuhad been singing the song. No one could understand [it], but Rūpa Gosvāmī understood and he wrote a beautiful verse that Mahāprabhu found. He said, “Oh! Who has written this? Who has understood My heart,” and Swaroop Dāmodara said, “Only You must have allowed him to understand Your heart.” Therefore, there is this verse:

śrī-caitanya-mano-‘bhīṣṭaṁ sthāpitaṁ yena bhū-tale

svayaṁ rūpaḥ kadā mahyaṁ dadāti sva-padāntikam

This verse is in glorification of Rūpa Gosvāmī, where ‘mano-‘bhīṣṭaṁ’ indicates, “He is the one that understood the mind, the heart of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu.” In CaitanyaCaritāmṛta where this verse is found, there is a purport, Śrīla Prabhupāda writes something quite interesting that I would like to read.

Śrīla Prabhupāda said [CC Antya 1.117 Purport]:

“The special function of Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī is to establish the feeling of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. These feelings are His desires that His special mercy be spread throughout the world in this Kali-yuga.

prithivite achhe yata nagarādi gram

sarvatra pracāra haibe mora nāma

The desire of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu is that all over the world, everyone, in every village and every town, know of Him and His Saṅkīrtana movement.”

Here Śrīla Prabhupāda is making it very clear—what are these feelings? He further says, “These are the inner feelings of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī committed to writing all these feelings of the Lord.”

Then Prabhupāda further said, “Now again by the mercy of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu the same feelings are being spread all over the world by the servants of the Gosvāmīs.” So indirectly Śrīla Prabhupāda is telling us that the desires of Mahāprabhu came to Rūpa Gosvāmī, they came to Prabhupāda, and now he is distributing it. Prabhupāda went on to say that, “And devotees who are pure and simple will appreciate this attempt. As concluded by Kavirāj Gosvāmī however, those on the level of hogs and dogs never appreciate such a great attempt. Yet this does not matter to the preachers of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s cult, for all over the world they will continue to perform this responsible work, even if persons like cats and dogs do not appreciate them.

Anyway, from PurīRūpa Gosvāmī then went to back to Vṛndāvan to begin this extraordinary mission of these four things that he was supposed to do and this was a very huge task. There were no books, there was no successor, there was no institution, there was nothing. It was up to Rūpa Gosvāmī to start to give form and some shape to this HareKṛṣṇa mission and it was actually very miraculous. It was a very wonderful and glorious time in Vṛndāvan. It was a desolate area and in a short period of time it was trying to be a flourishing Vaiṣṇava center.

The writing began on this attempt to fill up what Mahāprabhu had taught into words.  Besides that, actually amongst the Gosvāmīs, when they were writing, they were really kind of writing for each other. They’d write something and then they’d show it to each other, “What you think?” It wasn’t that they were thinking now that, “There is going to be a printing press and we can go all over the world.” They were just following the instructions and sharing it with each other; that’s how it was there.

At one time Rūpa Gosvāmī gave his Vidagdha Mādhava to Raghunātha Dāsa Gosvāmī to read. There is so much a mood of separation in that book, that Raghunātha Dāsa Gosvāmījust couldn’t stop crying and being in this mood where he can hardly eat. He was already only taking a little pot of butter and now wasn’t even taking that. He was just immersed so much in separation that everyone became worried, so some devotees came to Rūpa Gosvāmī and said, “Please, you must do something, maybe Raghunātha Dāsa will die in separation.” Then Rūpa Gosvāmī took one of his other books, that book was more in a jolly spirit. Somehow he convinced Raghunātha, “Now I need to take that manuscript back, because I need to do little editing here. You can read this in the meantime.”

Apart from these four things that needed to be done there, actually Rūpa Gosvāmī had to do quite a few other things. The first thing that he had to do beyond those four things was to reveal the nature and the mission of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. It really wasn’t fully comprehended and understood amongst all the devotees: “Who exactly is Lord Caitanya,and exactly what is He doing here?” Because Lord Caitanya was just acting as a devotee, so anytime anyone would say anything else about Him, except Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācāryaand Rāmānanda Rāya, who tried to glorify Him as the Supreme Personality of Godhead—and He would always silence them immediately, “No, no, stop!” But he allowed Rūpa Gosvāmī to reveal:

namo mahā-vadānyāya

kṛṣṇa-prema-pradāya te

kṛṣṇāya kṛṣṇa-caitanya-

nāmne gaura-tviṣe namaḥ

[Cc. Madhya 19.53]

 

He said that, and Mahāprabhu was silent; so he allowed. He was the one, he had to show—who is Mahāprabhu?

And then of course, then an even more famous verse in which he reveals the purpose of Mahāprabhu’s descent. That’s now there in Caitanya Caritāmṛta:

anarpita-carīṁ cirāt karuṇayāvatīrṇaḥ kalau

samarpayitum unnatojjvala-rasāṁ sva-Bhakti-śriyam

hariḥ puraṭa-sundara-dyuti-Kadamba-sandīpitaḥ

sadā hṛdaya-kandare sphuratu vaḥ śacī-nandanaḥ

[Cc. Ādi 1.4]

“May the Supreme Lord who is known as the son of Śrīmatī Śacī-devī be transcendentally situated in the innermost chambers of your heart. Resplendent with the radiance of molten gold, He has appeared in this age of Kali by His causeless mercy to bestow what no incarnation has ever offered before: the most sublime and radiant mellow of devotional service, the mellow of conjugal love.”

That is one of the 14 seed verses of Caitanya Caritāmṛta. From those 14 verses, the rest of the Caitanya Caritāmṛta is elaborated. So Rūpa Gosvāmī came to reveal this, the nature and the mission of Caitanya Mahāprabhu. It was a big part that he played and he also was to reveal Rādhā Bhāva, to really give Her service to the world. Now think about that, “What if he didn’t do that? What if he didn’t have service to Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī?” Horrifying! Because although Rādhārāṇī was known, but not necessarily valued, appreciated. Even in that story we told in Jaipur, some of you know, the Rāmānandīs didn’t want Rādhārāṇī on the altar with GovindaThus Rūpa Gosvāmī has to reveal the Rādhā Bhāva and he has to act as the Abhidheya Ācārya; and that means, how to act in devotional service. It is the whole foundation of our movement“How to be engaged in devotional service?” We think these things are just like a no-brainer, but because they have been so expertly given to us. We say “Yeah of course, devotional service!” But this was established by Rūpa Gosvāmī.

He was so good at writing that he could put very difficult concepts into just very simple form; like just in one verse he explains, “What is pure devotional service?”

Śrīla Prabhupāda quoted this again and again and again and so it is one of his favorite verses:

anyābhilāṣitā-śūnyaṁ

jñāna-karmādy-anāvṛtam

ānukūlyena kṛṣṇānu-

śīlanaṁ Bhaktir uttamā

Perfect description of Bhakti: no karma, no jñāna, no material desires, just pure unalloyed uninterrupted service to the Supreme Lord. Apart from being the AbhidheyaĀcārya he also had to manifest the Abhidheya Murti which is Śrī Govinda-Deva. We heard that story in Jaipur, amazing story of how he found Govindaji.

He also wrote that famous verse which is one of Śrīla Prabhupāda’s favorites, about the beauty of Govinda. The verse said [that] if you have any material desire, if you want to enjoy family, society, love, then just don’t go and see that beautiful face of Govinda; just don’t go. Because you will forget all your material desires.” But fortunately although Rūpa Gosvāmī tries to warn us, but Indradyumna Mahārāja already took us there [laughter] and so we saw His face. So it’s too late for all of us, at least the lucky ones that went to Jaipur. They are permanently infected with a disease that can’t be cured.

Actually Girirāja Mahārāja told us a really nice story about himself, when he was young and was in Bombay. He got very ill and Prabhupāda told him, “You better go back to America, it doesn’t seem like you can sustain here.” He was really sick, so he went back to America and he went to his parent’s home. He stayed there for three days, and while he was there, his parents brought the psychologist to talk to him. She said, “Glen, when you were a young boy, did you feel your parents didn’t love you?” Glen said, “What parents, which parents? I had so many parents, so many lifetimes.” Like in this way, he answered all her questions. Then he overheard the psychologist telling the parents, “I really don’t think there is anything I can do,” and so then he went away and he told Prabhupāda about what happened. Prabhupāda was so pleased, and he said, “You can never be cured now. This is very good!”

I was thinking about also the first time that I came into the Hare Kṛṣṇa temple. I actually didn’t want to come so much, but if I wanted to get a ride to that pop festival, I had to stop there first, for the Sunday feast. So then I took lots of Prasāda. I loved the Prasāda, and I heard the chanting and then I went to the pop festival. When I got to the pop festival, everything was horrible. It sounded like all of the music was off and everything looked dysphonic and I couldn’t understand. I was trying so hard to have fun and I couldn’t have fun anymore. That’s the principle there; we are not into false renunciation, but we get a higher taste.

Apart from being the Abhidheya Ācārya and also bringing the Abhidheya Murti, he also was the Rasācāryaa specialist in Rasa. He did so many things; you can’t even get down to the bottom of the list. But this is important. I want to tell this about the term ‘Rasācārya’; that means he synthesized Vedānta with Rasa. He established the flavors of devotion. He brought the emotions in. In other words he really brought in the “love.” This is such a cheap word in our world today. People have no idea what that word is, what that means. In Sanskrit, there are hundreds of names for different levels of loving experience and this is what Rūpa Gosvāmī explains in Bhakti-Rasāmṛta-Sindhu, so many levels of real love. It’s said that the Vedas speak in the language of a king; and the Purāṇas speak in the language of a friend; and the Rasa-Śāstra, those Śāstras from our Gosvāmīs, especially from Rūpa Gosvāmīthey speak in the language of a lover.Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī really explains the whole science of love. A category of people have such shallow, gross, tiny—little concept of what love means. In this world, what they think is love? It’s just like nothing. Like when we look at a hog wallowing, we think why does he do that? But Rūpa Gosvāmī explains that we have much higher, much broader potential than what we are going for. We are settling for nothing, although the potential is so great. There is BhāvaMahābhāvaPremaSneha so many things. So why go for the cheap material pleasure; it’s nothing but imitation.

These writers like Rūpa Gosvāmī, they are explaining the concepts which don’t exist in any other language. Like that, I was told in Chinese, they don’t even have a word for God. They just have like “above the emperor.” That’s as far as the concept can go for them. In English, there is no word for Dhām, because they don’t really have the concept of “soul” or the nature of the soul, so how could you really translate that? But Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī has explained these things, concepts that are just way beyond what people know of, in this world. He can even put them into poems that turn into forms: lotuses, wheels—Inconceivable, what is the capacity? For you know, it’s just like in the spiritual world, you don’t have these restrictions, so even a poem can have taste, can have everything and much more, it’s not flat—one dimensional.

We better cut it short. These all are the reasons to understand why we are Rūpānugas. Of course we can’t go or I think we will offend the local people if we don’t say one last thing very briefly that happened here. While Rūpa Gosvāmī was performing his Bhajan here, he had a deep desire to serve his Spiritual Master, brother—Sanātana Gosvāmī—on his Vyasapuja day. But he had nothing, so sitting here under the tree he thought, “What can I give him?” Tears were flowing onto his manuscript making it wet, and Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī,understanding his desire, facilitated so that he could serve Sanātana Gosvāmī. She came in the very beautiful form of a little local village girl and she brought all the ingredients for a feast and said “Bābā.” “What?” “Why don’t you cook?” Rūpa Gosvāmī was so excited by the arrival of his ingredients, that he just quickly took the ingredients and started to cook, so that he could fulfill his desire to serve Sanātana Gosvāmī, who is living over in PāvanSarovara. Then when Sanātana Gosvāmī came, he was so surprised, “Wow! How did you get these ingredients?” Sanātana Gosvāmī took some taste of that feast—sweet rice.

[Mahānta at Ter Kadamba had prepared sweet rice for the pleasure of all the devotees, and he took it out.]

When Sanātana Gosvāmī tasted, he said, “I have never tasted like this before. I am feeling this great ecstasy.” When he tasted this sweet rice again he asked, “Oh, who is that lady who brought?” Sanātana Gosvāmī inquired from Rūpa, “Where did you get these ingredients? How did they come here? From which girl? From which village?  Who is this?” Talking together, they understood that that was none other than Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī.

Jaya-Jaya Śrī Rādhe………..

Drama by Mahānta/Bābāji of Ter Kadamba:

[Included translations of Bābāji]:

Jaya-Jaya Śrī Rādhe……………………. Śyāma!

The name of this place is Ter KadambaTermeans we call God from the heart; Kadamba means Kadamba tree, it is the form of Rādhārāṇī. So one of its names is Kṛṣṇa-Priya. For this there is one poem:

व्रज के लता पता मर्म न जाने कोई

डाल डाल पाथ पाथ राधे राधे होई

vraja ke latā patā maram na jane koi

dāl-dāl pāth-pāth rādhe-rādhe hoi

[Translation:] “The leaves and everything of the Kadamba tree, they all call RādhāRādhā.”

In the morning Kṛṣṇa goes to herd the cows. It was only forest everywhere. He comes from Nandagaon. You also please come to participate in the drama. Let’s have one minute of chanting and dancing—that’s it. You can also chant and dance but dance by sitting.

Now let us call to Kṛṣṇa for coming to have lunch.

[Bhajan in call and response:]

Govinda Jaya-Jaya – Gopala Jaya-jaya!

Govinda Jaya-Jaya – Gopala Jaya-jaya!

Rādhā Ramana Hari – Govinda Jaya-Jaya!

Rādhā Ramana Hari – Govinda Jaya-Jaya!

Jay Kṛṣṇa Balarāma, Jaya Kṛṣṇa Balarāma.

Bolo Rādhe Śyāma, Jaya Rādhe Śyāma.

Haribol…………..

Haribol…………..

Haribol…………..

[Drama begins with narration]:

Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma have come now. Not all of the cowherd boys have come yet. Kṛṣṇa is calling to all the boys. Kṛṣṇas mobile/telephone is the flute, but for this telephone there is no problem. The telephones that we possess have big problems, because we have to pay money first (pre-paid). We have to charge a phone; we have to recharge it; we have to repair it; we have to dial the number. With flute, there is no number; all numbers are zero indicated by the holes of the flute… Our hero is Kṛṣṇa.

Now Kṛṣṇa is going to call out to the boys. Assume Indradyumna Swami Mahārāja now be one cowherd boy. Here everyone is a cowherd boy. He is going to call the cowherd boys now.

[Mahānta plays flute.]

DamŚrīdāmaVasudamIndradyumna Swami, cowherd boys! I am Kṛṣṇa calling.” [Laughter]

“Please come soon.” He is calling all the cowherd boys.

All the boys are running and coming.

[Some action, laughter]

Indradyumna Mahārāja: take your lunch!”

[Laughter, clapping]

Bābāji: “Indradyumna Mahārāja (as cowherd boy) says “Now, no lunch time, early morning.” So all the kids they have their lunch with them, and they will not eat here because it is not the time for lunch.

Now everyone came for lunch, Kṛṣṇa is not yet arrived. So Indradyumna Swami Mahārāja—cowherd boy—is calling Kṛṣṇa, but no mobile connection like airtel, no reliance, no tata-indicom; not even  bansi (flute). But his telephone is his loud voice. Now let’s all call out, so that Kṛṣṇa must come. It’s only a five minute drama. Chant in loud sound. No problem!

Everyone is calling to Kṛṣṇa: (everyone together with Bābāji in loud and long response)

Kṛṣṇa…………………………………………………………………….”

Kṛṣṇa replied, “I am coming…………………………………”

Kṛṣṇa is now coming.

[Made one devotee act as Kṛṣṇa, with attire of a black blanket/kambal]

काली कम्बली वाले की, जय कन्हैया लाल की

‘kāli kambali vāle ki, jaya kanhaiyā lāla ki’

This is one type of Śrīngāra where they put a black shawl (kambali) for Kṛṣṇa.

Kṛṣṇa came and is sitting in front of everyone. So everyone is thinking they want to eat first. But Indradyumna Swami—cowherd boy—says, “No, I am first offering.” So Indradyumna Swami is taking his lunch bag.

“Very tasty food, prepared by my Mom, take.” Mahārāja offers it to Kṛṣṇa. [Action, laughter, applause].

“Does it taste good? “Yes.”

Kṛṣṇa is telling, “Your Mom has made very good food.”

One day, someone’s stomach is only half-full. Only when you eat butter it becomes full.

[Called one Mātāji]

What’s your name?—“Shardiya”.

Shardiya Gopī went early in the morning to make butter. “Kṛṣṇa come here!” Actually she offered him butter; Kṛṣṇa is very happy. On Gopāṣṭamī day, he doesn’t goes to Gopīs’house; so all the Gopīs are so sad on Gopāṣṭamī.

Kṛṣṇa is calling to Gopīs.  [Mahānta plays flute.]

Kṛṣṇa: “LalitāViśākāChampakalataCitrāShardiya Gopīs—my dear girlfriends, I am very hungry. Please come to this place.”

Then all these Gopīs said, “Okay, we are coming.”

Shardiya Gopī has come now. Kṛṣṇa is on that side of the forest, so [that] Gopī wanted to meet to Kṛṣṇa. But our Kṛṣṇa is looking angrily, with wide open eyes.

So one more time let us make a ‘Ter,’ which means call; calling loudly with pure hearts. All are ready? So let’s call one time.

(Everyone together with Bābāji in loud and long response)

Kṛṣṇa…………………………………………………………………….”

So Kṛṣṇa came. “Shardiya”.

Shardiya has to feed Kṛṣṇa now.

[Action, laughter].

“So tasty!” He wants more.

Jaya-Jaya Śrī Rādhe.

“We have a sacred code name called—’ATB bank’”.

“Do you know, what is ATB bank? ATB Bank means ‘ALL TIME BHAKTI’ bank.”

[Applause]. The ATM of this material world’s banks does not work properly many times and it has some limitations. But our ATB bank, anybody can come, take more and more, there is no limitation, no checking. Rūpa Gosvāmī who is a beautiful manager of this bank, had given facility to unlimited withdrawal of Bhakti, more and more, without any limits. But there is one little condition—one should purely chant the holy name of Lord which should be ‘lineless’ chanting (continuous, uninterrupted chanting). Why? Kṛṣṇa at a time calls—nine lakhs cows who then assemble near Him. So let us all together, one time, purely chant. Close your eyes; see in your heart Govinda and Guru sitting:

Hare-Kṛṣṇa-Hare-Kṛṣṇa-Kṛṣṇa-Kṛṣṇa-Hare-Hare

Hare-Rāma-Hare-Rāma-Rāma-Rāma-Hare-Hare

Haribol ……………………………………………………………..

It’s a blessing of Rūpa Gosvāmī on all of you.

Indradyumna Swami Mahārāja:

Bābā has been taking care of this place very nicely from many years. When I first came here, 30 or 40 years ago, it was in disrepair and for so many years, he has built up this beautiful property, made it very organized and very clean. Even in his old age, he is doing it so nicely. As a result, we can come here and have a very ecstatic time and hear the glories of Rūpa Gosvāmī and his writing of Upadeśāmṛta, etc. We must reciprocate with Bābāsefforts to preserve this place for many future generations and we should give some “Bakshish.” We should give some donations, so he can keep this place running nicely, so that we can come back year after year here with our Parikramā party. You can see he is keeping nothing for himself, living like a humble Sādhu. So whatever money you give will be used for the service of Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī.

Mathurā – HH Śrīla Indradyumna Swami – Instructions

Best days of your life

– By His Holiness Śrīla Indradyumna Swami

Baḍa-Hari Prabhu ki—Jaya!

Mathurā Dhām ki—Jaya!e

Śrī-Śrī Rādhā Govinda ki—Jaya!

Lord Varāha-Deva ki—Jaya!

Kārtik Parikramā ki—Jaya!

Gaur Premanande! – Haribol!

Jaya-Jaya Śrī Rādhe………….. Śyāma!

Did you enjoy your pilgrimage Parikramā to the great city of Mathurā? [Applause, Haribol!]

Did you learn a lot of things about this transcendental abode? [Applause, Haribol!]

Has it left a deep impression in your hearts?  [Applause, Haribol!]

Did you like the pastime how Kṛṣṇa appeared as Varāha to the cowherd boys? [Applause, Haribol!]

And wasn’t it amazing the Darśana of the Deities? [Applause, Haribol!]

Tomorrow we’re going to walk to the first established temple in Vṛndāvan, Śrī-Śrī RādhāMadana-Mohan. That temple was established of course by Śrīla Sanātana Gosvāmī. And we’ll also be visiting his Samādhi Mandir, the Samādhi Mandir of Śrīla Sanātana Gosvāmī. It’s actually one of my favorite places in Vṛndāvan, his Samādhi. It’s his full Samādhi, means his transcendental body was placed in the dust of Vṛndāvan there and they built a beautiful Samādhi. And in that area there is also what’s called the Grantha Samādhigrantha means scripture; so there is a scripture Samādhi. All the books that were written by the six Gosvāmīs were placed inside that Samādhi for preservation. It’s about this big; it’s in the corner of the courtyard. And the instructions are to never open that Samādhi, because some of the books that were written by the Gosvāmīs are just too deep, too esoteric, too elevated for aspiring devotees to read or to hear.

The atmosphere in that area is very much like old Braja. In the early years we used to go and visit there, 72-73. We would go there and we would have long Kirtans and lots of Kathā, so it created a very deep impression in my heart as a young devotee and I always like to go back there and seek guidance and inspiration from Śrīla Sanātana Gosvāmī. We’ll sit at the foot of the Madana-Mohan temple. There’s a small little courtyard there. We’ll all fit there and tomorrow’s class will be given by His Grace Caturātmā Prabhu. He’s in shock so give him some applause.  [Applause: Haribol!]. He is very famous for speaking about the lives and the teachings of great Vaiṣṇava personalities. And Kirtans will be performed by Mādhava Prabhu, Baḍa-Hari Prabhu, and me. [Applause, Haribol!]

I just love to sing and dance in front of Sanātana Gosvāmī’s Samādhi. So we’re going to leave at seven in the morning. You can assemble on the road, the Parikramā Mārga outside my house there at Rāma Reti near Balarāma Bābā’s place, near my house, or [the] houses of BB Govinda Mahārāja, Girirāja Swami. You can all assemble there at seven o’clock. It means you can go to Maṅgala Āratī at KṛṣṇaBalarāma Mandir.

In that cool morning air of Vṛndāvan, we’ll all walk down to the Madana-Mohan temple, takes about 45 minutes. It’s a very nice walk, part of the Vṛndāvan Parikramā walk. Tomorrow we’ll give you time to have breakfast there. But there won’t be any lunch served tomorrow, because when we do the Vṛndāvan temples, you can come back and take Prasādam where you’re staying or you can take Prasādam at the temple, so we won’t serve lunch tomorrow. Okay, so remember we’re leaving a little later: seven o’clock, and if you’re late you can just come down to the Madana-Mohan temple and you’ll catch us there.

One point I know, I’m looking around, and devotees are quite sleepy. Remember I told you: in India it’s good to go to bed early. Actually, in Vedic culture, in village life, people would go to sleep when the sun went down, and they would wake when the sun got up. India has a very intense climate. You might not be able to see it or perceive it but the climate, the weather, everything is very intense here and you can’t move as quick and get as many things done as you can in the West. You may have started to experience that.

You can’t do everything. But you should do the main thing, which is come on the Parikramās. We’ve organized these Parikramās. We’ve invited these illustrious personalities, older devotees to accompany us, so you can get a real Vṛndāvan experience over the next month. So go to bed early. You need the rest. You need the rest more here than you do in the West. It also helps to take a nap in the afternoon. This is not deep philosophy, this is just how to live in India, how to survive the Parikramā. When you get back, don’t run down to Loi Bazaar to go shopping. There’ll be plenty of beautiful Sāris at the end of Kārtika, as well.  When you get back, take a nap, take a nap. And get up and chant some extra japa, read a little bit.

At most, you can go to the temple to offer your lamp and then go home and take rest. Don’t talk and chat till one—and then you get tired and you won’t be able to hear the Kathā or dance in the Kirtans and so this is good advice. You should be in bed by 8:30, nine o’clock. What? Yes! The early morning’s the best part of Braja. When you get up, it’s dark. You can chant Hare Kṛṣṇa Hare Kṛṣṇa. These Parikramās are intensewalking, singing, in India. But these are some of the best days of your life. When you’re older you’ll look back and remember these Parikramās, and you’ll remember, “Wow, that was really amazing.”

Okay, early to bed and drink lots of water. We’re told to drink two liters, you know. In India you can drink four liters. It helps keep you hydrated. So tomorrow at Madana-Mohan temple up on that beautiful hill, I don’t want to see any of this [mimics sleeping]. You’re sleeping!

Okay, and before you leave today, please leave our pūjārī friend a nice donation. This pūjārī’s doing very Pakka Sevā and the Deities are very beautiful. They’re shining, there’s lots of Bhakti Bhāva. So this is setting such a nice example for the whole world taking very good care of Kṛṣṇa, so if you have some lakṣmī, please give it to the pūjārī. He has a beautiful long, long hair there—big Śikhā. So please give him a very nice donation. I’m just making a personal request because everything will go to the Sevā of RādhāGovindaji.

Ananta Vṛndāvan produced a beautiful video last night about the first days in Vṛndāvan. It’s called Entering the Dhām.” It’s on Facebook, my Facebook page. It’s three minutes long, beautiful song by Jahnavi, “Like the river flows to the sea”. So if you can get online, watch that video. He is posting photos, you can see yourself, “There I am in Mathurā!” Go online if you can and see the beautiful work of Ananta Vṛndāvan—the whole world’s enjoying it. All of ISKCON is relishing his artistic abilities.

We would love to share this with the whole world and inspire them to come to Vṛndāvan! [Applause, Haribol!] We’ll try to get a big screen maybe and show you as we produce them every day. Also everything’s going live on the internet, Vrindavan.tv. You can tell all your friends, your family members, they can see you, see the Parikramās and benefit from the Kārtik experience here on Vrindavan.tv live every day, the whole Parikramā. Okay, seven o’clock tomorrow morning outside my house. Madana-Mohan and Sanātana Gosvāmī lecture by Caturātmā Prabhu.

Mathurā Dhām ki—Jaya!

Mathurā Maṇḍala Dhām ki—Jaya!

Śrī Vṛndāvan Dhām ki—Jaya!

Lord Varāha – Deva ki—Jaya!

Śrī-Śrī Rādhā Govinda-Deva ki—Jaya!

Vṛndāvanesvari Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī ki—Jaya!

Gaura Bhakta Vṛndā ki—Jaya!

Kārtik Parikramā 2015 ki—Jaya!

Jaya-Jaya Śrī Rādhe…Śyāma!

I really hope Prasādam is here?. Prasādam is here, Wow! Rasikā Śiromani Devī Dāsī ki—Jaya! Govinda Carana ki—Jaya! She would like to make some announcements. “Announcements Dāsī!

[Announcement by Rasikā Śiromani Devī Dāsī]

Śrīla Gurudeva leads the devotees Prasādam prayers…

Hare-Kṛṣṇa-Hare-Kṛṣṇa-Kṛṣṇa-Kṛṣṇa-Hare-Hare

Hare-Rāma-Hare-Rāma-Rāma-Rāma-Hare-Hare

Hare-Kṛṣṇa-Hare-Kṛṣṇa-Kṛṣṇa-Kṛṣṇa-Hare-Hare

Hare-Rāma-Hare-Rāma-Rāma-Rāma-Hare-Hare

Hare-Kṛṣṇa-Hare-Kṛṣṇa-Kṛṣṇa-Kṛṣṇa-Hare-Hare

Hare-Rāma-Hare-Rāma-Rāma-Rāma-Hare-Hare

Śrī-Śrī Bhagavat Prasādam ki –Jay,

Mathurā Dhām ki—Jaya!

Rādhā Govinda-Deva ki—Jaya!

Lord Varāha-Deva ki—Jaya!

Kārtik Parikramā ki—Jaya!

Śrī-Śrī Rādhā Madana-Mohan Temple ki—Jaya!

Sanātana Gosvāmī ki—Jaya!

Gaur Premanande —- Hari Haribol!

 

 

Kāmyavana – HH Śrīla Indradyumna Swami – Instructions

Instructions with Indradyumna Swami

Mood & Precautions during Parikramā

– By His Holiness Śrīla Indradyumna Swami

It’s even getting more cloudy, which is nice because it’s even cooler than it was earlier. And the weather is going to start changing—that means it going to sometimes be hot, and sometimes even cold. This is not deep spiritual philosophical wisdom, it’s just kind of practical knowledge that you have to be careful not to get sick in the changing weather patterns.

I think when everyone goes out now, you should be wearing a sweater, some socks or maybe even a hat, because if it gets cold, you should be covered. You shouldn’t get sick, because once your immune system goes down, then you can get something more serious. And when it is sunny, be careful not to get too much sun. There’s a big difference between the sun in Russia—Moscow, Paris, and New York—and the sun in India. It’s a very intense sun here that can deplete you and make you sick. Well, you could get heat stroke or even sun stroke.

One golden rule in India is you should only drink bottled water and you never eat outside. When we come to places like this, we are providing nice Prasādam. When we’re back at the KṛṣṇaBalarāma Mandir, they have Prasādam every afternoon there. But don’t eat out at sweet shops.

‘vāco vegaṁ manasaḥ krodha-vegaṁ jihvā-vegam’

[NOI – verse 1]

Don’t eat out of the sweet shops. Don’t eat ice cream from those little carts they carry around. When they don’t sell it one year, they put it in the freezer and they bring it out the next year. They don’t sell—the next year’s ice cream is ten-twelve years old. [Laughter] I’m exaggerating, but be careful.

Don’t eat from the food stands, like when we’re at the bus stops on the way to Jaipur. Those little stands—they sell yummy samosas and pakoras and khachori. But you don’t know who cooked there, where it was cooked, what pot it was cooked in.

vāco vegaṁ manasaḥ krodha-vegaṁ

jihvā-vegam udaropastha-vegam

If you’re hungry—eat fruits. If you wash the fruits, it’s generally safe, especially fruits that have a skin on them like oranges or bananas. You can have them. You can eat extra fruits and nuts. You can get some nuts in packages, that’s pretty safe. But generally, we will be providing nice Prasādam at Noon. And at the temple they have Prasādam and many of you can cook where you’re staying. You have in your lodging or apartments, you can cook Prasādam there. I said this last year and then ten minutes after the talk, I walked outside, devotees were buying ice cream out of the little box, for five rupees or whatever. Be careful!

Be careful of the animals. I know the cows are really cute and especially the little calves, but every calf has a Mommy looking after that little calf. The Mommy may come and charge you. Respect the cows from a distance.

How many of you have ever been on the Polish festival tour in Poland during July and August? Oh, wow! [Polish word]. It’s intense, but this is ten times more intense. This is the first day, it’s real easy. But we get up quite early, we are driving, we are out, we are walking around everything. So when you get back, it’s good just to relax in the evening. Maybe you can go to the temple and offer the lamp, like that, and so forth, but be careful not to stay up too late. Don’t eat late at night.

Your main purpose in being here is going on Parikramā and hearing the Kathā and participating in the Kīrtana and seeing all these wonderful places. If you stay up at night and socialize, you’re walking and talking and sitting, looking around, then you go to bed late and you gradually become more and more tired, and you won’t be able to keep up with us.

We are speaking from many years of experience, like forty years of being in India, having survived. If you get sick, let my management team know. Rasikā Śiromani, she’s got nothing to do [Laughter]. You can tell her, we’ll find a doctor for you. We have the best doctors. If you get sick, take care of it immediately. Just let us know, and we’ll take care of you. If you get a little cut, you take care of it immediately. We have antibiotic creams you can buy over the counter here. In America, we come with “Neosporin”, it has antibiotics in it. You can also get something similar in all the pharmacies here. You get a cut, immediately put some antibiotic cream and a band-aid. Don’t let it go more than 2-3 days. Even a mosquito bite, if you scratch it, then it gets infected, so put on some antibiotic cream, put a band-aid on, you’ll be okay.

Another very intelligent thing to do while you are in India: we have this hand wash, the antibacterial hand wash they sell all over the world, you can even get it in India. Whenever I’m anywhere, I’m all the time just cleaning my hands with this liquid, because you don’t know what you’re touching when you’re going on, this and that, and the animals and the sides of the building. If you keep your hands clean with this disinfectant, and then when you touch your mouth, you won’t transfer a disease. I travel with this everywhere in the world. There are different kinds of it.

In the West, in Kṛṣṇa Consciousness, we follow the rule: eat to your full satisfaction. In India, we have a different rule: under-eat. Especially don’t eat too much at night. Don’t go to MVT, have a pizza, think, “I’m going to sleep really good.” And everyone’s going to probably get a little diarrhea. We’re being quite open here. Fast; just don’t eat anything for a few days, just drink water. Don’t eat, take a little yogurt; it will cool your system down.

And the monkeys are so cute. We heard how Kṛṣṇa’s playing with His monkeys here in Vṛndāvan. Rāma had a whole army of monkeys, but you’re not God. The monkeys, they just want to be rascals, and they will steal your bags, they will steal your glasses. I’ve had at least 26 pairs of glasses stolen in the last 40 years. Watch out for the monkeys! There’s one monkey, I see him, he has stolen six bananas in the last five hours here, and I don’t know where he is now. Also, always be respectful to the locals. Never argue with anyone: rickshaw-valas, never get in any arguments. One last point, as far as our Parikramā is concerned, always be on time. It all starts with getting up early in the morning. I know it’s not easy sometimes, but the buses are going to leave at 5:30 am, maybe ten or twenty minutes later. But it’s always good to be on time, as everything functions smoothly, and it saves everyone’s time.

All this is not as interesting as Kṛṣṇa’s pastimes, and stories about Durvāsā Muni, but it’s practical advice that will make your Parikramā experience much smoother, healthier and enjoyable. Now during my talk this morning, I committed a great offense. Without knowing it, I told the pastime that Caturātmā Prabhu was going to tell, about the boy that Durvāsā Muni cursed to be a crocodile. He has been waiting months to tell that story! So during Prasādam, he was practically in tears. I said, “What’s wrong?” He said, “You told my story!” Seriously!

So I said, “You will have nothing to say this afternoon?”. So I got my computer out, and I had one more story I was going to tell if I had more time, so I’m going to give him one more story that I had that he can tell. I actually gave him my notes on the computer and he has been memorizing them since Prasādam. But of course, it’s not my story; it’s a beautiful pastime which I touched on earlier, about the ten questions that Yudhisthira answered to Yamarāja. It’s a very important, instructive pastime and Caturātmā is an excellent preacher. He’s a very popular class-giver, so with great pleasure, we turn the program over to Caturātmā, who will tell this wonderful pastime. Because I just disappointed him and made him cry, please give him a big round of applause as he comes forward.

[Applause]. Caturātmā Prabhu kī Jaya!

Following you home – HH Indradyumna Swami

Dear Srila Prabhupada,

Please accept my humble obeisances in the dust of your lotus feet.

Today, at a youth festival in South Africa, devotees glorified your Divine Grace.It was not the day of your Vyasa-puja. It was not the day of your departure.Was, let’s say, the most ordinary day.

But the disciple does not need to wait for a special day to glorify his spiritual master. He is ready to glorify him every moment of every day throughout his life.Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura writes:

dhyayan stwams tasya yasas tri-sandhyam 
vande guroh sri-caranaravindam

“I must always remember my spiritual master and glorify him. At least three times a day (at sunrise, at noon and at sunset), I should bow in deep reverence to the lotus feet of my spiritual master. “

Among all my topics, I like talking about your name, personality, qualities and games. Always mindful of you deep in my heart, I’m talking about you with friends, I glorify you in the company of devotees and with great pleasure I spread your glory to the fallen souls, suppressed by this material world. All this is natural for me, because you are the most important person in my life.

In fact, you were the first devotee with whom I was introduced. More than forty years ago, on a warm summer evening in Ann Arbor, Michigan, I happened to see a group of sannyas singing the holy Names on the university lawn. Intrigued by their robes, their manners and apparent joy, I approached them to listen to the singing.

Their leader, Vishnujana Swami, stopped kirtan and called me.

“Sit down, young man,” he said, “and I will tell you about the glory of my spiritual master.”

While he talked about you as a person, about teaching, about a mission, I realized that I gradually began to perceive you in my heart and my spiritual teacher.

When Maharaj finished speaking, I asked the question:

– Can I become his disciple?

“Yes, of course,” Maharaj replied. “You have to.” After all, he is Prabhupada, the teacher, at the feet of which all other teachers are seated.

That evening, without the least hesitation, I decided to follow all your instructions and began to water the seed planted by Maharaj in my heart. After that, day by day, my faith in you strengthened and that you can take me home to the spiritual world, where every word is a song, every step is a dance, and every day is a cheerful and joyful holiday.

Wishing to fully surrender, I dedicated to serving you the years of my youth – that stage of life when a healthy body, strong feelings and an active mind convince us that there are so many wonderful opportunities for satisfying the senses. However, it was not difficult for me to give you these valuable years to you, Srila Prabhupada, because the service to you was – and always will be – the highest happiness of my life.

In fact, I went through adolescence, and then mature years, even without noticing them – because I felt satisfaction in serving you, distributing books, spending harinams and festivals. When you hate your work, time hardly drags on, and when you love, it seems that time flies.

And now, now I am at the last stage of my life, this is jara (old age), one of the four main sufferings of the material world, according to the Bhagavad-gita. I begin to feel the pain that old age brings to us all. But, as before, serving you gives so much satisfaction and happiness to my heart that I remember Arjun on the battlefield of Kurukshetra. Absorbed by his service to Sri Krishna, he perceived the arrows of the Kauravas in his body as if they were thousands of fragrant flowers.

My spiritual brothers and sisters, just like me, were fortunate in this life to experience what your blessings are. Can we ask you something else? It is said that children are the future of society. Can we ask you to bestow upon your blessings the young devotees of our movement?

Soon they will inherit the responsibility that you have placed on your immediate students – the responsibility for preserving and spreading your mission. Please bless them to win. Please bless them to experience the same happiness that we experienced while serving your divine punishments.

One day after a public program in Vrndavana, you left for Krishna-Balarama-mandir with a servant on a rickshaw. It was already dark outside. We with several bishops went home on foot, but I was late and soon realized that I was alone. Suddenly, as if from nowhere, your rickshaw appeared. You stopped the rickshaw.

“What are you doing here?” – You asked me.

“I’m lost, Srila Prabhupada,” I replied.

You smiled.

“Then follow me home,” you said.

So I ran after your rickshaw all the way to Krishna-Balarama-mandir.

My dear teacher, let me continue to run after you all the way back to the spiritual world, and there, in the transcendental abode, serve you, fulfilling your every wish. Let your works in this world never be in vain, and let countless souls be satisfied by finding shelter at your lotus feet for the next ten thousand years.

Glory to you!

Your servant,

Indradyumna Swami

Sanket – The first meeting of Radha and Krishna – by HH Indradyumna Swami

The first meeting of Radha and Krishna

By HH Indradyumna Swami

01 Dec 2012

Radha Krishna - by Indradyumna Swami
Radha Krishna – by Indradyumna Swami

Again I want to note that I am not qualified to talk about such a holy place as Sanket. I feel my lack that I’m sitting here. There are many of my much more qualified Godbrothers who could discuss the games that are taking place here and this place. This is my first stay in Sanket for the last 40 years of visiting the dham. I’m surprised that we never came here. My first impression was that it was a small quiet Vrindavan village. It is located between Warsaw and Nandagram.

Here, as well as hundreds and thousands of years ago, are engaged in agriculture. Also my first impression was that the villagers are very friendly towards us. When we entered this village, they did not treat us as outsiders, they accepted us as members of their family, and greeted us with exclamations: “Jaya Radhe, Hare Krishna, Haribol!” Before the bus arrived, I wandered around the village in the search for a place where we could hold sat-sangu. First I went to the Sunqué devi-mandir – this is the biggest temple here. But there was not much room.

Sanket-devi is the embodiment of Yoga-maya. In this village she is present in the form of Durga.At the same time, it is considered non-different from the gopis called Vira-devi. As I understand, Vira-devi is one of the most important assistants of Vrinda-devi, who is responsible for organizing the most intimate games that take place here in Sanket. Then I reached Krishna-kunda, this is a large lake that is in the forest and there is nowhere to sit down. Then we proceeded to Julian Steel, where Radha and Krishna are swinging on a swing. Then we proceeded to a large mandala, it is now flat, it seems to want to be covered with marble, this is a mandala race where Radha and Krishna dance a dance of race.

Then the Lord sent us from the heart to the bhajan-kutiri Gopal Bhatta Gosvami. And we passed, I can not say that by chance, because nothing happens in Vrndavana, we passed the place where Radha-Sanketbihari Mandir stands, where there are wonderful Radha-Krishnabihari Deities, which means, He who enjoys. As soon as we stopped at this place, the residents greeted us very warmly and you can live here, you see many rooms here. Residents began to inspire us to look at the Deities, to spend kirtan. They immediately spread out the rugs. By the great mercy of Srila Prabhupada we are sitting today in this holy place.

Sanket is mentioned in the Puranas as one of the forests, such a small forest of Vrndavana. It is part of the large Sankat-van forest. Sanket means a meeting place, which is indicated by signals using mirrors. Gosvami Vrndavana described that Radharani being in Warsaw, and Krishna in Nandagram, they send signals to each other with the help of mirrors about the meeting. This meeting is called sambhog.

There are two moods of Radha and Krishna, one is called sambhog, this is the mood when they meet, and the other is vipralambha, love in separation. You remember that we visited the forest of Prema-van, this is a forest of love and in the middle of this forest there is a lake of love – Prema-Sarovar. Hardly we can forget a wonderful game, as this lake appeared. Radha and Krishna felt such a strong sense of separation that their tears mingled with each other and with the tears of the gopis and formed this wonderful lake. In Prema-vana Radha and Krishna are in a mood of separation, but here they meet in Sanketa-vana.

I found a beautiful quote from Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura, where he writes that he believes that Sankata-van is the personification of the divine love of Radha and Krishna when They meet.We remember that there are 4 kinds of separation, which we discussed not so long ago and also there are 4 types of love meeting. This is the science of devotional service. Devotional service is not just some sentiments, it’s very deep emotions that are based on a solid philosophy, one might even say – in scientific philosophy.

Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura describes the Sabbah, the meeting that it consists of 4 kinds of meetings. The first kind is when Radha and Krishna just matured and developed a great sense of love for each other. The second kind is after Radharani calms down after his anger. Sometimes Radharani becomes angry with Krsna and after Krsna appeases her, they meet again. The third kind is when They meet after They have been separated for a while. This can be when Krishna is away for some time and they meet again. The fourth kind is a meeting when Krsna returns after a long absence. For example, Krsna comes back from Dvaraka or Mathura, or Hastinapura, ie. He was absent for some time, which seemed to be gopi for an eternity.

A good example of this is the meeting of the gopis and Krishna in Kuruksetra during the eclipse.They asked Krsna, “Krishna, you look different, where is your peacock feather, why are you dressed like a prince, why on your head is the crown, where is your flute, will you return with us to Vrndavana?” Krishna for as long as he did many things: He married thousands of princesses, He built the palaces of Dvaraka, took part in many battles and defeated them. After the gopis met Krsna, they were surprised that Krsna was walking with a weapon, wearing a helmet, they asked him to put on a yellow dhoti, because only then Krishna could become himself.

We can not imagine the feelings of the gopis, because Lord Caitanya in the “Siksastak” describes that even one moment of separation from the Lord seems to be an eternity for the devotee, therefore, if we combine these moments with each other, we can not even imagine, How happy the gopis were when they met with Krsna. Bhaktivinod Thakura describes Kuruksetra as one of the most sacred places for Vaisnavas, precisely because of these emotions.

Kurukshetra is now a very popular place, because the Bhagavad-gita was told there, many tourists come there, but we go there because we want to better understand the feelings of the residents of Vrndavana. Krishna says in the Bhagavad-gita that His devotee sees Him everywhere, but especially those who want to develop the mood of the bridzhabashi like to listen to all the pastimes of Krsna, but especially they seek to understand Krsna’s mood in Vrndavana.This is one of the deepest understandings of the Ratha Yatra festival, when we take Lord Krishna, Balarama and Subhadra back to Vrndavana after a whole eternity of separation from them. Devotees keep this in mind all the time, because it’s not just a feast, a meeting with friends, a big festival show, it’s a deep mood that we have to meditate on and then we can develop Krsna consciousness.

Advanced Vaisnavas try not to understand what is important, because it is an exalted subject, but to appreciate the mood of Lord Caitanya during the Ratha Yatra festival, because Lord Caitanya is the embodiment of Radharani’s love, and Lord Jagannath is Krishna Himself. During the Ratha-yatra, Lord Caitanya dances in ecstasy before the chariot, and between Him and the Lord there is a profound interchange of love, and sometimes because of this interchange, Lord Jagannatha stops his chariot, and no one can move it: neither city dwellers nor elephants, because there is an interchange of love between Radha and Krishna. No one knows these things better than Srila Prabhupada. He gave us this festival of ratha-yatra, as a preaching program.What is the significance of Sanket in the 4 sections of sambhogi?

Sanket is the very first place where Radha and Krishna met, when They only matured and developed a great transcendental desire for each other. The acaryas describe that although each meeting of Radha and Krishna is eternally fresh and inspiring, however, their first encounter was especially unique. So unique that Krishna forever remembered it. Sometimes He told His closest devotees, Svia, the first meeting with Sri Radha in Sanket.

One day Krishna told Visakha, “Oh, my friend, when I started joking with Radharani during our first meeting, She began to stutter.” Even in Dvaraka, where Krsna was playing games with His queens, whenever He began to describe His first encounter with Srimati Radharani, the grief of separation was so overwhelming to Him that He fell silent, unable to continue. Their first meeting, when they grew up a little, occurred during the rainy season. Why is such a unique event, like the first meeting, occurred during the rainy season? Because of the rain, the bridzhabasi was difficult to move around the village and Radha and Krishna used this to meet. Due to bad weather, it was easier for them to meet between Nandagram and Warsaw.

The acaryas describe that the night before Radharani and Krishna met, Radharani’s affection for Krsna, Her desire and anticipation of meeting Him was so strong that She could not sleep. She walked back and forth in her room to the surprise of Swich’s girlfriends. Mother Purnamasi, who organizes all meetings and games in Vrndavana, arranged so that the first meeting of the Divine couple took place on the night of the dark moon, when the Moon is just beginning to grow. All the signals were transmitted by mirrors, messages were transmitted through the gopis and through the cowherd boys, and before going out to the meeting, which was scheduled for about midnight, Radharani plastered her body with black musk. She wore a dark blue sari.

Govinda das Thakura describes: “O Radha, Your shining necklace, bracelets and clothes, they are all black. All lotus flowers, by which You passed, all the bumblebees that flew past You and even the night itself became darker. “ During the full moon, Radharani wears white clothes, takes a white lotus flower and even bees that curl around her – a white color. The question arises, how could Radharani see on a dark night?

When we go to parikramy in the evenings, it is generally difficult for us to see anything. Last night I went to the parikrama in Nityanandavat. When Lord Nityananda came to Vrndavana, He sat under this tree and sang holy names. We also went there and repeated japa there. We were 5-6 people and some of them walked barefoot, and I asked how they can walk barefoot on the rocks.When we went down to Kalia-ghat, where the asphalt begins, one devotee pushed me away and said that there was a deadly spider. We recoiled, and I saw a dark brown spider, the size of a bottle cap. There are many dangerous living beings in Vrndavana here. There are cobra, similar to a lizard, but it is 12 times more toxic than a normal cobra. I saw one such in the 70s. Madhura-bihari described that even the breath of this spider is enough to kill, but scientifically it is not proven, but if it bites, then in 5 minutes you will die and there is no antidote from his bite. And this spider just strolled, and we walked at night barefoot. Since there were many pilgrims, I began to push this spider away with my stick, but Madhura Bihari stopped me and said that this spider is a bridzhabashi, you can not treat him like that, he took a small twig, planted a spider on it and dropped it somewhere in side. And I saw a dangerous creature in this spider, and Madhura-bihari saw him as a bridzhabashi. Yesterday, when we were at Radha-kunda, I saw a snake in the water, and I thought that in the west the children would throw rocks at it, but here the children recoiled and they just shouted that the snake was in the water. Of course, if there is a risk of a snake bite, the villagers usually kill snakes in order to protect their families and animals.

Radharani goes out at night and the night is such that even though the eye is pierced. How does She find the way? Acaryas very poetically describe how She found the way to Sanket. They say that love itself, madhurya-rasa, as a compass pointed Radharani direction. And just as this embodied love led Radharani, she led to Sanket and Krsna Himself. Krsna came first. Krishna began to put the finishing touches on, although Vrinda-devi and Purnamasi had met in Vrinda-kunda, in particular the Gupta-kunda, in the morning, everything was discussed and organized, but Krishna did the last check, said something to the birds to arrange a worthy meeting of Radharani . With the finishing touches He adorned the beautiful kunja with beautiful ornaments.And what kind of decoration was it? It was the sound of the name Radha. The names of Radharani were sung everywhere, and this was the last ornament of the kunja.

And suddenly, although it was a quiet and peaceful night, the lightning flashed, and lit up all the kunja, and Krsna saw how Srimati Radharani and all his gopi friends enter the kunja. It was their first meeting at their age and They could not say anything because it was their first meeting, They just drank the nectar of beauty each other and the nectar of love for each other. The acaryas say that they simply exchanged loving glances. And They already began to approach each other, but then the Goddess of modesty stopped Them.

And under the influence of this Goddess of modesty, Laja-devi, Radharani became nervous and decided to escape. But Lalita caught up with Her and said that She would not go anywhere. Then one of the confidential servants of Srimati Radharani went to her and whispered to her in the ear: “Listen, dear friend! Today we all have a request to You. Please let Krsna enjoy Your arms at least once. If You will fulfill this request, we will never again ask you anything. “ Radharani smiled a little. But then another gopi approached her and began to whisper: “Oh, moonlight! Just look at this poor young man, He came here alone, through dangerous jungles just for You! Be compassionate to Him. Rid Him of anxiety and unrest. “

Inspired by His friends, Radharani went to Krishna, and Krsna came to Her, and They embraced in this very place. Then the gopis quietly left, leaving Radha and Krishna alone, and then I will not speak, because the depth of our awareness is not enough.

In Srimad Bhagavatam there is a wonderful verse that says that even if a person has material desires in the heart, in particular lust, then, by listening to these endless, wonderful games of Radha and Krishna, about games in which there is a so-called a lust that is absolutely transcendent, then these material desires are destroyed, so we must listen to these games, and for this there is no better place than Sanket, the place of the first meeting of the sabhoga. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu also visited Sanket during His parikrama in Vrndavana. He sat here under a large stone and listened to these games. As I mentioned, Gopal Bhatta Goswami lived here in Sanket in an underground cave for many years. It was not far from the big temple of Sanket Devi, there Gopal Bhatta was immersed in the games taking place here. Hare Krsna.

Nearby there is a place of Radha Nagari, it is not very well known, and not many devotees visit it.This secret place is named after the gopis, who are called Radha Nagari. Since this place is only 100 meters away, I also want to touch upon the games that were taking place there. I found this touching game and it shows how Radharani is merciful to His devotees.

We discussed how Radharani and Krishna met in Sanket. These games lasted all night. These games take place in different kunjas, in different places. At the end of the night, Radha and Krishna are sleeping peacefully, and one of the services of Vrinda-devi is to awaken the Divine Chet. After awakening, Radha and Krishna must quickly return to their homes so that their relatives will not notice their absence. When Radha returns home, many Her friends of the gopis follow her, who help her sneak into the house unnoticed. Then all these gopis go to their homes to also slip unnoticed. This gopi, Radha Nagari, when she returned home, was seen by her relatives and they began to think where she had been absent all night and the next day they forbade her to go and serve Radharani. And this young girl, who was excommunicated from her ministry, stood all day in her room crying. This is similar to the case when many gopis of their relatives forbade going on a beautiful autumn night to dance the race. The gopis, who were not allowed to enter Krishna, felt such a strong separation that some of them left their bodies and went to Goloka Vrndavana.

The next morning, Radharani went to prepare for Krishna, and all the gopis were with Her, but someone noticed that Radha Nagari is not with them and reported this to Radharani. They said that relatives suspected her of something, because she was out all night. Radharani immediately turned off the path, although She was preparing to cook for Krishna, but She turned to the house of Radha Nagari, and She had some weighty arguments to explain to Radha Nagari’s relatives of her absence from the night. Radharani told Radha-nagari’s family that yesterday she had a bad cold and Radha Nagari was so kind that she came and looked after her all night, she helped She, and at the end of the night Radharani sent her home, and so she returned so late .

Goswamis describe that when the relatives of Radha-nagari saw the innocent face of Srimati Radharani, they heard Her persuasive words, their hearts melted. And they allowed their daughter to go with the princess of Vraja to Nandagram.Since then, the name Radha-nagari has been associated with devotees who are the object of the special mercy and love of Srimati Radharani. Entering the circle of servants of Srimati Radharani is the rarest perfection. But to receive service from Srimati Radharani is a special favor, a special blessing, a special perfection that Radha Nagari received. Devotees who know about this game go to this place of Radha-nagari and pray to Srimati Radharani for special mercy, that She will take them to serve, that She will turn from her path and take care of them.

Radha-Nagari ki jay.

Vrindavaneshvari Srimati Radharani ki jay.

Shri Shyamasundar ki jay! Sri Radha-Shyam ki jay!

Sri Radha-Sunketbihari ki jay!

Sanket Kim Ki Jai!

Hare Krsna!