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Bhakti-Rasayana
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About the Author

 

On the auspicious day of Mauni Amavasya, 1921, Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja took his divine birth in a devout Vaisnava family in Tivaripura, in the state of Bihar, India.

 

In February, 1946, he met his gurudeva, Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja, and his life of complete and exemplary dedication to Gaudiya Vaisnavism, or the path of krsna- bhakti in the line of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, began.

 

He accompanied his gurudeva on his extensive preaching tours throughout India, actively assisting him in propagating the teachings of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu for the eternal benefit of the living entities in this world. This included regularly hosting the thousands of pilgrims attending the yearly circumambulation of Sri Navadvipa-dhama, the appearance place of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and Sri Vrndavana-dhama, the appearance place of Sri Krsna.

 

His gurudeva had instructed him to translate the writings of prominent Gaudiya Vaisnavas into Hindi, a task he assiduously assumed throughout his entire life and which resulted in the publication of nearly fifty Hindi sacred texts. These invaluable masterpieces are currently being translated into English and other major languages of the world.

 

For many years, he travelled throughout India to spread the message of Gaudiya Vaisnavism, and it was for this end, also, that in 1996, he journeyed abroad. During the next fourteen years, he circled the globe more than thirty times. Whether he was in India or abroad, his preaching always bore the distinctive characteristic of boldly unmasking any misconception obscuring the specific purposes of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu's advent, in strict adherence to the desire of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada and in perfect congruence with the conceptions of Srila Rupa Gosvami, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu's foremost follower. Thus, in present times, in upholding the glorious tenets of the Gaudiya sampradaya, he performed the function of a true acarya.

 

Introduction

 

At the beginning of the second part of Srila Sanatana Gosvami's Sri Brhad-bhagavatamrta, Jaimini Rsi explains to Janamejaya how, after having heard the description of Narada's quest that comprises the first part of this exalted scripture, Pariksit Maharaja's mother Uttara said to her son, "My heart cannot be satisfied if those devotees who, being indifferent to any other spiritual practice and spiritual attainment, desire only the eternal service of Srimati Radhika, and who perpetually sing Her glories and are immersed in love for Her, attain residence in merely the same Vaikuntha as so many other devotees do. This is a matter of great sorrow! And I cannot tolerate that this may be the final destination for devotees like Sri Nandaraya and Sri Yasoda, There must certainly be a suitable abode for them that is superior to Vaikuntha. If there is such a place, then please describe it and deliver me from this doubt." (Brhad-bhagavatam.rta (2.1.21-2, 24))

 

Pariksit Maharaja replied, "Although I could satisfy you by answering your question with the words of the Sruti and Smrti, instead, by the mercy of my spiritual master, Sri Sukadeva, I will first relate a historical narration that will dispel all of your doubts. Then I will speak those essential verses of the scriptures." (Brhad-bhagavatamrta (2.1.34-5))

 

Then, after hearing the incomparable story of Gopa-kumara that comprises the second part of the Brhad-bhagavatamrta, Janamejaya said to Jaimini Rsi, "Fearing that these descriptions will now come to an end, my heart is feeling great sorrow.

 

Therefore now please give me such potent nectar that, upon hearing which, my heart will be fully purified for all time." (Brhad-bhagavatamrta (2.7.89))

 

Jaimini replied, "O my child Janamejaya, your father, Sri Pariksit, feeling transcendental pleasure upon describing the glories of Goloka, next sang with a wonderful and sweet devotional mood numerous verses from two great epics that are the very essence of the Srutis and Smrtis. With great happiness I wander in this world singing these verses, thereby mitigating the pangs of separation from your father that I feel." (Brhad-bhagavatamrta (2.7.90-1))

 

Then Jaimini Rsi went on to quote four verses from Brahma- samhita and fifty-nine verses from Srimad-Bhagavatam that collectively have come to be known as bhakti-rasayana, nectar-tonic that stimulates devotion unto the Supreme Lord Sri Krsna. This book is a translation of lectures spoken originally in Hindi by our esteemed Srila Gurudeva, om Visnupada astottara-sata Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Maharaja. Spoken in 1991 at Sri Kesavaji Gaudiya Matha in Mathura, this material comprises his commentary on twenty-eight of these verses that are the very essence of the Tenth Canto of Srimad-Bhagavatam. In gradation these verses glorify the devotion of the different classes of devotees in Vraja, culminating in the topmost bhakti of the vraja- gopis.

 

In his ongoing publication of Vaisnava literature in the English language, Srila Gurudeva mentions repeatedly that he is simply following in the footsteps of his dear friend and instructing spiritual master, nitya-lila-pravista om Visnupada Sri Srimad A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, Srila Prabhupada single- handedly and in a relatively short period of time spread the teachings of Krsna consciousness around the entire world. His translations and writings set the standard for the literary presentation of Vaisnava philosophy, and we sincerely pray that our current efforts are pleasing to him.

 

Grateful acknowledgement is extended to Lavanga-lata dasi for copy-editing this new third edition, to Santi dasi for proofreading the final manuscript, to Atula-krsna dasa for checking the Sanskrit, to Krsna-prerna dasa for designing the new cover and to Subala-sakha dasa for providing the new photograph of Srila Gurudeva. It is the earnest prayer of all of us serving in Gaudiya Vedanta Publications that Srila Gurudeva, who is the very embodiment of a rasika Vaisnava, be pleased with our efforts. We offer obeisances to him time and again for giving us such wonderful explanations of the nectar-tonic that Pariksir Maharaja gave to Uttara, Jaimini Rsi gave to Janamejaya, and Sanatana Gosvami gave to the inhabitants of this world.

 

Contents

 

 

Publisher’s Note

 

 

Introduction

 

 

Mangalacarana

 

 

Chapter

 

1.

The Earth Becomes Fortunate

1

2.

The Peacocks Dance to Krsna's Flute Melody

13

3.

The Best Servant of Hari

25

4.

The Clouds, Rivers and Trees Serve Krsna

35

5.

Happiness in Separation

49

6.

The Gopis Desire to Become Birds and Deer

59

7.

The Animals of Vraja are Stunned

69

8.

The Gopis Glorify the Pulinda Girl

77

9.

Krsna Enjoys Playing with His Friends

89

10.

The Glories of Sakhya-rasa

99

11.

Nanda and Yasoda's Love for Krsna

111

12.

Mother Yasoda's Bhakti is Indescribable

125

13.

Mother Yasoda Binds Krsna

137

14.

Purva-raga, or Preliminary Attraction

151

15.

Krsna's Beauty is Unsurpassed

159

16.

The Nature of the Gopis' Mahabhava

169

 

Bhakti-rasayana verses

181

 

Glossary

193

 

Verse Index

203

 

Bhakti-Rasayana

Item Code:
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Edition:
2011
ISBN:
9781935428374
Language:
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Pages:
220 (9 Color Illustrations)
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About the Author

 

On the auspicious day of Mauni Amavasya, 1921, Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja took his divine birth in a devout Vaisnava family in Tivaripura, in the state of Bihar, India.

 

In February, 1946, he met his gurudeva, Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja, and his life of complete and exemplary dedication to Gaudiya Vaisnavism, or the path of krsna- bhakti in the line of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, began.

 

He accompanied his gurudeva on his extensive preaching tours throughout India, actively assisting him in propagating the teachings of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu for the eternal benefit of the living entities in this world. This included regularly hosting the thousands of pilgrims attending the yearly circumambulation of Sri Navadvipa-dhama, the appearance place of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and Sri Vrndavana-dhama, the appearance place of Sri Krsna.

 

His gurudeva had instructed him to translate the writings of prominent Gaudiya Vaisnavas into Hindi, a task he assiduously assumed throughout his entire life and which resulted in the publication of nearly fifty Hindi sacred texts. These invaluable masterpieces are currently being translated into English and other major languages of the world.

 

For many years, he travelled throughout India to spread the message of Gaudiya Vaisnavism, and it was for this end, also, that in 1996, he journeyed abroad. During the next fourteen years, he circled the globe more than thirty times. Whether he was in India or abroad, his preaching always bore the distinctive characteristic of boldly unmasking any misconception obscuring the specific purposes of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu's advent, in strict adherence to the desire of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada and in perfect congruence with the conceptions of Srila Rupa Gosvami, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu's foremost follower. Thus, in present times, in upholding the glorious tenets of the Gaudiya sampradaya, he performed the function of a true acarya.

 

Introduction

 

At the beginning of the second part of Srila Sanatana Gosvami's Sri Brhad-bhagavatamrta, Jaimini Rsi explains to Janamejaya how, after having heard the description of Narada's quest that comprises the first part of this exalted scripture, Pariksit Maharaja's mother Uttara said to her son, "My heart cannot be satisfied if those devotees who, being indifferent to any other spiritual practice and spiritual attainment, desire only the eternal service of Srimati Radhika, and who perpetually sing Her glories and are immersed in love for Her, attain residence in merely the same Vaikuntha as so many other devotees do. This is a matter of great sorrow! And I cannot tolerate that this may be the final destination for devotees like Sri Nandaraya and Sri Yasoda, There must certainly be a suitable abode for them that is superior to Vaikuntha. If there is such a place, then please describe it and deliver me from this doubt." (Brhad-bhagavatam.rta (2.1.21-2, 24))

 

Pariksit Maharaja replied, "Although I could satisfy you by answering your question with the words of the Sruti and Smrti, instead, by the mercy of my spiritual master, Sri Sukadeva, I will first relate a historical narration that will dispel all of your doubts. Then I will speak those essential verses of the scriptures." (Brhad-bhagavatamrta (2.1.34-5))

 

Then, after hearing the incomparable story of Gopa-kumara that comprises the second part of the Brhad-bhagavatamrta, Janamejaya said to Jaimini Rsi, "Fearing that these descriptions will now come to an end, my heart is feeling great sorrow.

 

Therefore now please give me such potent nectar that, upon hearing which, my heart will be fully purified for all time." (Brhad-bhagavatamrta (2.7.89))

 

Jaimini replied, "O my child Janamejaya, your father, Sri Pariksit, feeling transcendental pleasure upon describing the glories of Goloka, next sang with a wonderful and sweet devotional mood numerous verses from two great epics that are the very essence of the Srutis and Smrtis. With great happiness I wander in this world singing these verses, thereby mitigating the pangs of separation from your father that I feel." (Brhad-bhagavatamrta (2.7.90-1))

 

Then Jaimini Rsi went on to quote four verses from Brahma- samhita and fifty-nine verses from Srimad-Bhagavatam that collectively have come to be known as bhakti-rasayana, nectar-tonic that stimulates devotion unto the Supreme Lord Sri Krsna. This book is a translation of lectures spoken originally in Hindi by our esteemed Srila Gurudeva, om Visnupada astottara-sata Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Maharaja. Spoken in 1991 at Sri Kesavaji Gaudiya Matha in Mathura, this material comprises his commentary on twenty-eight of these verses that are the very essence of the Tenth Canto of Srimad-Bhagavatam. In gradation these verses glorify the devotion of the different classes of devotees in Vraja, culminating in the topmost bhakti of the vraja- gopis.

 

In his ongoing publication of Vaisnava literature in the English language, Srila Gurudeva mentions repeatedly that he is simply following in the footsteps of his dear friend and instructing spiritual master, nitya-lila-pravista om Visnupada Sri Srimad A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, Srila Prabhupada single- handedly and in a relatively short period of time spread the teachings of Krsna consciousness around the entire world. His translations and writings set the standard for the literary presentation of Vaisnava philosophy, and we sincerely pray that our current efforts are pleasing to him.

 

Grateful acknowledgement is extended to Lavanga-lata dasi for copy-editing this new third edition, to Santi dasi for proofreading the final manuscript, to Atula-krsna dasa for checking the Sanskrit, to Krsna-prerna dasa for designing the new cover and to Subala-sakha dasa for providing the new photograph of Srila Gurudeva. It is the earnest prayer of all of us serving in Gaudiya Vedanta Publications that Srila Gurudeva, who is the very embodiment of a rasika Vaisnava, be pleased with our efforts. We offer obeisances to him time and again for giving us such wonderful explanations of the nectar-tonic that Pariksir Maharaja gave to Uttara, Jaimini Rsi gave to Janamejaya, and Sanatana Gosvami gave to the inhabitants of this world.

 

Contents

 

 

Publisher’s Note

 

 

Introduction

 

 

Mangalacarana

 

 

Chapter

 

1.

The Earth Becomes Fortunate

1

2.

The Peacocks Dance to Krsna's Flute Melody

13

3.

The Best Servant of Hari

25

4.

The Clouds, Rivers and Trees Serve Krsna

35

5.

Happiness in Separation

49

6.

The Gopis Desire to Become Birds and Deer

59

7.

The Animals of Vraja are Stunned

69

8.

The Gopis Glorify the Pulinda Girl

77

9.

Krsna Enjoys Playing with His Friends

89

10.

The Glories of Sakhya-rasa

99

11.

Nanda and Yasoda's Love for Krsna

111

12.

Mother Yasoda's Bhakti is Indescribable

125

13.

Mother Yasoda Binds Krsna

137

14.

Purva-raga, or Preliminary Attraction

151

15.

Krsna's Beauty is Unsurpassed

159

16.

The Nature of the Gopis' Mahabhava

169

 

Bhakti-rasayana verses

181

 

Glossary

193

 

Verse Index

203

 

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