Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu

Bhagavad-Gita-Original-Art-Pancha-Tattva

…A person in the conditioned stage of material existence is in an atmosphere of helplessness, but the conditioned soul, under the illusion of māyā, or the external energy, thinks that he is completely protected by his country, society, friendship and love, not knowing that at the time of death none of these can save him. The laws of material nature are so strong that none of our material possessions can save us from the cruel hands of death…An intelligent person, therefore, does not put his faith in any material possessions, but completely takes shelter of the lotus feet of the Lord.

Let me offer glorification to the Supreme Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. One who has taken shelter of His lotus feet is the most glorified person. (Sri Caitanya-caritamrta Adi Lila, Chapter 7, Text 2)

…Prabhu means master. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu is the supreme master of all masters; therefore He is called Mahāprabhu. Any person who takes shelter of Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya Mahāprabhu is most glorified because by the mercy of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu he is able to get promotion to the platform of loving service to the Lord, which is transcendental to salvation. (purport to above verse)

Sri Caitanya-caritamrta 1975
By His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Adi-lila, Chapter 7, Text 1-4

TEXT 1

agaty-eka-gatiṁ natvā
hīnārthādhika-sādhakam
śrī-caitanyaṁ likhyate ‘sya
prema-bhakti-vadānyatā

SYNONYMS

agati—of the most fallen; eka—the only one; gatim—destination; natvā—after offering obeisances; hīna—inferior; artha—interest; adhika—greater than that; sādhakam—who can render; śrī-caitanyam—unto Lord Śrī Caitanya; likhyate—is being written; asya—of the Lord, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu; prema—love; bhakti—devotional service; vadānyatā—magnanimity.

TRANSLATION

Let me first offer my respectful obeisances unto Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu, who is the ultimate goal of life for one bereft of all possessions in this material world and is the only meaning for one advancing in spiritual life. Thus let me write about His magnanimous contribution of devotional service in love of God.

PURPORT

A person in the conditioned stage of material existence is in an atmosphere of helplessness, but the conditioned soul, under the illusion of māyā, or the external energy, thinks that he is completely protected by his country, society, friendship and love, not knowing that at the time of death none of these can save him. The laws of material nature are so strong that none of our material possessions can save us from the cruel hands of death. In the Bhagavad-gītā (13.9) it is stated, janma-mṛtyu-jarā-vyādhi-duḥkha-doṣānudarśanam: one who is actually advancing must always consider the four principles of miserable life, namely, birth, death, old age and disease. One cannot be saved from all these miseries unless he takes shelter of the lotus feet of the Lord. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu is therefore the only shelter for all conditioned souls. An intelligent person, therefore, does not put his faith in any material possessions, but completely takes shelter of the lotus feet of the Lord. Such a person is called akiñcana, or one who does not possess anything in this material world. The Supreme Personality of Godhead is also known as Akiñcana-gocara, for He can be achieved by a person who does not put his faith in material possessions. Therefore, for the fully surrendered soul who has no material possessions on which to depend, Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu is the only shelter.

Everyone depends upon dharma (religiosity), artha (economic development), kāma (sense gratification) and ultimately mokṣa (salvation), but Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, due to His magnanimous character, can give more than salvation. Therefore in this verse the words hīnārthādhika-sādhakam indicate that although by material estimation salvation is of a quality superior to the inferior interests of religiosity, economic development and sense gratification, above salvation there is the position of devotional service and transcendental love for the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu is the bestower of this great benediction. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu said, premā pum-artho mahān: “Love of Godhead is the ultimate benediction for all human beings.” Śrīla Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī, the author of Caitanya-caritāmṛta, therefore first offers his respectful obeisances unto Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu before describing His magnanimity in bestowing love of Godhead.

TEXT 2

jaya jaya mahāprabhu śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya
tāṅhāra caraṇāśrita, sei baḍa dhanya

SYNONYMS

jaya—all glories; jaya—all glories; mahāprabhu—unto the Supreme Lord; śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya—of the name Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya; tāṅhāra—of His; caraṇa-āśrita—one who has taken shelter of the lotus feet; sei—he; baḍa—is very much; dhanya—glorified.

TRANSLATION

Let me offer glorification to the Supreme Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. One who has taken shelter of His lotus feet is the most glorified person.

PURPORT

Prabhu means master. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu is the supreme master of all masters; therefore He is called Mahāprabhu. Any person who takes shelter of Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya Mahāprabhu is most glorified because by the mercy of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu he is able to get promotion to the platform of loving service to the Lord, which is transcendental to salvation.

TEXT 3

pūrve gurv-ādi chaya tattve kaila namaskāra
guru-tattva kahiyāchi, ebe pāṅcera vicāra

SYNONYMS

pūrve—in the beginning; guru-ādi—the spiritual master and others; chaya—six; tattve—in the subjects of; kaila—I have done; namaskāra—obeisances; guru-tattva—the truth in understanding the spiritual master; kahiyāchi—I have already described; ebe—now; pāṅcera—of the five; vicāra—consideration.

TRANSLATION

In the beginning I have discussed the truth about the spiritual master. Now I shall try to explain the Pañca-tattva.

PURPORT

In the First Chapter of Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Ādi-līlā, the author, Śrīla Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī, has described the initiator spiritual master and the instructor spiritual master in the verse beginning with the words vande gurūn īśa-bhaktān īśam īśāvatārakān. In that verse there are six transcendental subject matters, of which the truth regarding the spiritual master has already been described. Now the author will describe the other five tattvas (truths), namely, īśa-tattva (the Supreme Lord), His expansion tattva, His incarnation tattva, His energy tattva and His devotee tattva.

TEXT 4

pañca-tattva avatīrṇa caitanyera saṅge
pañca-tattva lañā karena saṅkīrtana raṅge

SYNONYMS

pañca-tattva—these five tattvas; avatīrṇa—advented; caitanyera—with Caitanya Mahāprabhu; saṅge—in company with; pañca-tattva—the same five subjects; lañā—taking with Himself; karena—He does; saṅkīrtana—the saṅkīrtana movement; raṅge—in great pleasure.

TRANSLATION

These five tattvas incarnate with Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu, and thus the Lord executes His saṅkīrtana movement with great pleasure.

PURPORT

In Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam there is the following statement regarding Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu:

kṛṣṇa-varṇaṁ tviṣākṛṣṇaṁ
sāṅgopāṅgāstra-pārṣadam
yajñaiḥ saṅkīrtana-prāyair
yajanti hi su-medhasaḥ

“In the Age of Kali, people who are endowed with sufficient intelligence will worship the Lord, who is accompanied by His associates, by performance of saṅkīrtana-yajña.” (Bhāg. 11.5.32) Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu is always accompanied by His plenary expansion Śrī Nityānanda Prabhu, His incarnation Śrī Advaita Prabhu, His internal potency Śrī Gadādhara Prabhu and His marginal potency Śrīvāsa Prabhu. He is in the midst of them as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. One should know that Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu is always accompanied by these other tattvas. Therefore our obeisances to Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu are complete when we say śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya prabhu -ityānanda śrī-advaita gadādhara śrīvāsādi-gaura-bhakta-vṛnda. As preachers of the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, we first offer our obeisances to Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu by chanting this Pañca-tattva mantra; then we say Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare. There are ten offenses in the chanting of the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra, but these are not considered in the chanting of the Pañca-tattva mantra, namely, śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya prabhu-nityānanda śrī-advaita gadādhara śrīvāsādi-gaura-bhakta-vṛnda. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu is known as mahā-vadānyāvatāra, the most magnanimous incarnation, for He does not consider the offenses of the fallen souls. Thus to derive the full benefit of the chanting of the mahā-mantra (Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare), we must first take shelter of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, learn the Pañca-tattva mahā-mantra, and then chant the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra. That will be very effective.

Taking advantage of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, many unscrupulous devotees manufacture a mahā-mantra of their own. Sometimes they sing, bhaja nitāi gaura rādhe śyāma hare kṛṣṇa hare rāma or śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya prabhu-nityānanda hare kṛṣṇa hare rāma śrī-rādhe govinda. Actually, however, one should chant the names of the full Pañca-tattva (śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya prabhu-nityānanda śrī-advaita gadādhara śrīvāsādi-gaura-bhakta-vṛnda) and then the sixteen words Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare, but these unscrupulous, less intelligent men confuse the entire process. Of course, since they are also devotees they can express their feelings in that way, but the method prescribed by Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s pure devotees is to chant first the full Pañca-tattva mantra and then chant the mahā-mantra-Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare.

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