Pranams (Prayers)

Srila Prabhupada playing harmonium

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One of the most used books in our temple room is the songbook. Everyday it seems, I am flipping through the “Songs of the Vaisnava Acaryas”, singing one of the many songs or reciting some of the numerous pranams (prayers) as part of my daily sadhana. The following post is the first 13 pages of songbook, which in my mind is a nice way to start the day and is a good prelude to other devotional service.

Pranams
from the Songs of the Vaisnava Acaryas

SRI GURU PRANAMA

om ajnana-timirandhasya jnananjana-salakaya
caksur unmilitam yena tasmai sri-gurave namah

om-address; ajnana-of ignorance; timira-by the darkness; andhasya-of one who was blinded; jnana-anjana-by the ointment of spiritual knowledge; salakaya-by a medical instrument called a salaka, which is used to apply medical ointment to eyes afflicted with cataracts: caksuh-eyes; unmilitam-were opened; yena-by whom; tasmai-unto him; sri-gurave-unto my spiritual master; namah-obeisances.

I offer my respectful obeisances unto my spiritual master, who has opened my eyes, which were blinded by the darkness of ignorance, with the torchlight of knowledge.

SRI RUPA PRANAMA

sri-caitanya-mano-‘bhistam sthapitum yena bhtu-tale
svayam rupah kada mahyam dadati sva-padantikam

sri-caitanya-of Lord Caitanya; manah- mind; abhistam-what is desired; sthapitam-established; yena-by whom; bhu-tale-on the surface of the globe; svayam-himself; rupah-Srila Rupa Gosvami; kada-when; mahyam-unto me; dadati-will give; sva-his own; pada-lotus feet; antikam-proximity to.

When will Srila Rupa Gosvami Prabhupada, who has established within this material world the mission to fulfill the desire of Lord Caitanya, give me shelter under his lotus feet?

MANGALACARANA

vande ‘ham sri-guroh sri-yuta-pada-kamalam sri-gurun vaisnavams’ ca
sri-rupam sagrajatam saha-gana-raghunathanvitam tam sa jivam
sadvaitam savadhutam parijana-sahitam krsna-caitanya-devam
sri-radha-krsna-padan saha-gana-lalita-sri-visakhanvitams’ ca

vande–offer my respectful obeisances; aham–I; sri-guroh–of my spiritual master; sri-yuta-pada-kamalam–unto the lotus feet; sri-gurun–unto the spiritual masters; vaisnavan–unto all the Vaisnavas; ca–and; sri-rupam–unto Srila Rupa Gosvami; sa-agra-jatam–with his elder brothers Sri Sanatana Gosvami; saha-gana-raghunatha-anvitam–with Raghunatha Dasa Gosvami and his associates; tam–unto him; sajivam–with Jiva Gosvami; sa- advaitam–with Advaita Acarya; sa-avadhutam–with Nityananda Prabhu; parijana-sahitam–and with Srivasa Thakura and all the other devotees; krsna-caitanya-devam–unto Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu; sri-radha-krsna-padan–unto the lotus feet of Radha and Krsna, saha-gana–with associates; lalita-sri-visakha-anvitan–accompanied by Lalita and Sri Visakha; ca–also.

“I offer my respectful obeisances unto the lotus feet of my spiritual master and unto the feet of all Vaisnavas. I offer my respectful obeisances unto the lotus feet of Srila Rupa Gosvaml, along with his elder brother Sanatana Gosvami, as well as Raghunatha Dasa , Raghunatha Bhatta, Gopal Batta and Srila Jiva Gosvami. I offer my respectful obeisances to Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and Lord Nityananda along with Advaita Acarya, Gadadhara, Srivasa, and other associates. I offer my respectful obeisances to Srimati Radharani and Sri Krsna along with Their associates Sri Lalita and Visakha.”

SRILA PRABHUPADA-PRANATI

nama om visnu-padaya krsna-presthaya bhu-tale
srimate bhaktivedanta-svamin iti namine

namah–obeisances; om-address; visnu-padaya–unto him who is at the feet of Lord Visu; krsna-presthaya–who is very dear to Lord Krsna; bhu-tale–on the earth; srimate–all-beautiful; bhakti-vedanta-svamin–A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami; iti–thus; namine– who is named.

I offer my respectful obeisances unto His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupalda, who is very dear to Lord Krsna, having taken shelter at His lotus feet.

namas te sarasvate deve gaura-vani-pracarine
nirvisesa -sunyavadi-pascatya-desa-tarine

namah–obeisances; to–unto you, sarasvate deve–servant of Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Gosvami; gaura-vani–the message of Lord Caitanya; pracarine–who are preaching; nirvisa–impersonalism; sunya-vadi–(from) voidism; pascatya–Western; deska-countries; tarine–who are delivering.

Our respectful obeisances are unto you, O spiritual master, servant of Sarasvati Gosvami. You are kindly preaching the message of Lord Caitanyadeva and delivering the Western countries, which are filled with impersonalism and voidism.

SRILA BHAKTISIDDHANTA SARASVATI-PRANATI

nama om vinsu-padaya krsna-presthaya bhu-tale
srimate bhaktisiddhanta-sarasvatiti namine

I offer my respectful obeisances unto His Divine Grace Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati, who is very dear to Lord Krnsa, having taken shelter at His lotus feet.

sri- varsabhanavi-devi-dayitaya krpadhaye
krsna-sambandha-vijnana-dayine prabhave namah

sri-varsabhanavi-devi-dayitaya–unto Sri Varsabhanavi-devi-dayita Dasa, the servant of the lover of Srimati Radharani; krpa-abdhaye–who is an ocean of mercy; krsna-sambandha–(of) the relationship with Krsna; vijnana–(of) the science; dayine–who is the deliverer; prabhave–unto the master; namah–obeisances.

I offer my respectful obeisances to Sri Varsabhanavi-devi-dayita Dasa [another name of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati, who is favored by Srimati Radharani and who is the ocean of transcendental mercy and the deliverer of the science of Krsna.

madhuryojjvala-premadhya-sri-rupanuga-bhaktida-
sri-gaura-karuna-sakti-vigrahaya namo ‘stu te

madhurya–conjugal; ujjvala–brilliant; prema–love; adhya– enriched with; sri-rupa-anuga–following Srila Rupa Gosvami; bhakti-da–delivering devotional service; sri-gaura–(of) Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu; karuna–(of) the mercy, sakti–energy; vigrahaya–unto the personified; namah–obeisances; astu–let there be; to–unto you.

“I offer my respectful obeisances unto you, who delivers devotional service which is enriched with conjugal love of Radha and Krsna, coming exactly in the live of revelation of Srila Rupa Gowvami.”

names te gaura-vani-sri-murtaye dina-tarine
rupanuga-viruddhapasiddhanta-dhvanta-harine

namah–obeisances; to–unto you; gaura-vani–teachings of Lord Caitanya; sri-murtaye–unto the personified; dina–(of) the fallen; tarine–unto the deliverer; rupa-anuga–the philosophy which follows the teachings of Srila Rupa Gosvami; viruddha–against; apasiddhanta–(of) unauthorized statements; dhvanta–the darkness; harine–unto you who are removing.

I offer my respectful obeisances unto you, who are the personified teachings of Lord Caitanya. You are the deliverer of the fallen souls. You do not tolerate any statement which is against the teachings of devotional service enunciated by Srila Rupa Gosvami.

SRILA GAURAKISORA-PRANATI

namo gaura-kisoraya saksad-vairagya-murtaye
vipralambha-rasambhode padambujaya te namah

namah–obeisances; gaura-kisoraya–unto Gaurakisora Dasa Babaji; saksat–directly; vairagya–renunciation; murtaye–unto the personified; vipralambha–(of) separation (from Krsna) rasa–(of) the mellow; ambhodhe–O ocean; pada-ambujaya–unto the lotus feet; te–your; namah–obeisances.

I offer my respectful obeisances unto Gaurakisora Dasa Babaji Maharaja [the spiritual master of Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati], who is renunciation personified. He is always merged in a feeling of separation and intense love of Krsna.

SRILA BHAKTIVINODA-PRANATI

namo bhaktivinodaya sac-cid-ananda-namine
gaura-sakti-svarupaya rupanuga-varaya te

namah–obeisances; bhaktivinodaya–unto Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura; sat-cit-ananda-namine–known as Saccidananda; gaura–(of) Lord Caitanya; sakti–energy; svarupaya–unto the personified; rupa-anuga-varaya–who is a revered follower of Srila Rupa Gosvami; te–unto you.

I offer my respectful obeisances unto Saccidananda Bhaktivinoda, who is transcendental energy of Caitanya Mahaprabhu. He is a strict follower of the Gosvamis, headed by Srila Rupa.

SRILA JAGANNATHA-PRANATI

gauravirbhava-bhumes tvam nirdesta saj-jana-priyah
vaisnava-sarvabhaumah sri-jagannathaya te namah

gaura–(of) Lord Caitanya; avirbhava–(of) the appearance; bhumeh–of the place; tvam–you; nirdesta–the indicator; sat-jana– (to) all saintly persons; priyah–dear; vaisnava–(of) the Vaisnavas; sarvabhaumah–chief; sri jagannathaya–unto Jagannatha dasa Babaji; te–unto you; namah–obeisances.

I offer my respectful obeisances to Jagannatha Dasa Babaji, who is respectful to the entire Vaisnava community and who discovered the place where Lord Caitanya appeared.

SRI VAISNAVA-PRANAMA

vancha-kalpatarubhyas ca krpa-sindhubhya eve ca
patitanam pavanebhyo vaisnavebhyo namo namah

vancha-kalpa-tarubhyah–who are desire trees; ca–and; Krpa– (of) mercy: (of) mercy; sindhubhyah–who are oceans; eva–certainly; ca–and; patitanam–of the fallen souls; pavanebhyah–who are the purifiers, vaisnavehhyah–unto the Vaisnavas; namah namah–repeated obeisances.

I offer my respectful obeisances unto all the Vaisnava devotees of the Lord. They are just like desire trees who can fulfill the desires of everyone, and they are full of compassion for the fallen conditioned souls.

SRI GAURANGA-PRANAMA

namo maha-vadayaya krsna-prema-pradaya te
krsnaya krsna-caitanya-namne gaura-tvise namah

namah–obeisances; maha-vadanyaya–who is most magnanimous; krsna-prema–love of Krsna; pradaya– who can give; te–unto You; krsnaya–the original Personality of Godhead; krsna-caitanya-namne–under the name Krsna Caitanya; gaura-tvise– whose complexion is the golden complexion of Srimati Radharani; namah–obeisances.

“I offer my respectful obeisances unto the Supreme Lord Sri Krsna Caitanya, who is more magnanimous that any other avatara, even Krsna Himself, because He is bestowing freely what no one else has ever given-pure love of Krsna”

SRI PANCA-TATTVA-PRANAMA

panca-tattvatmakam krsnam bhakta-rupa-svarupakam
bhaktavataram bhaktakhyam namami bhakta-saktikam

panca-tattva-five features; atmakam– consisting of; krsnam–unto Lord Krsna; bhakta-rupa– form of a devotee; sva-rupakam–personal form; bhakta-avataram–in the form of incarnation; bhakta-akhyam–celebrated as a devotee, namami–I offer my obeisances; bhakta-saktikam–the giver of the energy of a devotee.

I offer my obeisances unto the Supreme Lord, Krsna, who appears as a devotee [Lord Caitanya Himself], as His personal expansion [Sri Nityananda], His incarnation [Sri Advaita], His devotee [Sri Srivasa], and His energy [Sri Gadadhara], and who is the source of all strength for the devotees.”

SRI KRSNA-PRANAMA

he krsna karuna-sindho dina-bandho jagat-pate
gopesa gopika kanta radha-kanta namo ‘stu te

he–O; krsna–Krsna; karuna-sindho–O ocean of mercy; dina– (of) the distressed; bandho–O friend; jagat–(of) the universe; pate–O Lord; gopa-isa–O master of the cowherdmen; gopika-kanta–O lover of the gopis; radha-kanta–O lover of Radharani; namah–obeisances; astu–let there be; to–unto You.

O my dear Krsna, You are the friend of the distressed and the source of creation. You are the master of the cowherdsmen and the lover of the gopis, especially Radharani. I offer my respectful obeisances unto You”.

SAMBANDHA-ADHIDEVA-PRANAMA

jayatam suratau pangor mama manda-mater gati
mat-sarvasva-padambhojau radha-madana-mohanau

jayatam–all glories; suratau–who are engaged in amorous pastimes; pangoh–who am lame; mama–of myself; manda-mateh–having depraved intelliegence; gati–the shelter; mat–my; sarva-sva–be all and end all; pada-ambhojau–whose lotus feet; radha-madana-mohanau– to Sri Radha and Madana-mohana.

“Glory to the all-merciful Sri Radha and Madana-mohana, who are always engaged in amorous pastimes. The are the only shelter of my depraved and crippled self. Their lotus feet are the be-all and end-all of my life.”

ABHIDHEYA-ADHIDEVA-PRANAMA

divyad-vrndaranya-kalpa-drumadhah
srimad-ratnagara-simhasana-sthau
sri-sri-radha-srila-govinda-devau
presthalibhih sevyamanau smarami

divyat–shining; vrndaaranya–in Vrndavana; kalpa-druma–the desire tree; adhah–under; srimat–opulent; ratna–bedecked with gems; agara –in a mansion; simha-asana–on a throne; sthau–who are seated; sri-sri-radha–Sri Radha; srila-govinda-devau–and Sri Govinda; prestha-alibhih–by female attendants; sevyamanau–being served; smarami–I meditate upon.

“I meditate on Sri Radha and Govinda. They are seated on a throne in a mansion bedecked with gems under the desire trees in Vrndavana, being served by Their loving female attendants.”

PRAYOJANA-ADHIDEVA-PRANAMA

sriman rasa-rasarambhi vamsi-vata-tata-sthitah
Karsan venu-svanair gopir gopinathah sriye ‘stu nah

sriman–worshipable Lord; rasa-rasa–of the rasa-lila; arambhi–the inaugurator; vamsi-vata–of the Vamsivata tree; tata–at the base; sthitah–seated; Karsan–attracting; venu–of the flute; svanaih–with the sounds, gopih–the gopis; gopi-nathah–Master of the gopis; sriye-astu–may He be auspicious; nah–unto us.

“May Lord Gopinatha confer on us His grace. He inaugurated the rasa-lila by attracting the spiritual milkmaids of Vraja with the enchanting tune of His flute, and He is seated at the base of the vamsivata tree.”*

SRI-RADHA-PRANAMA

tapta-kancana-gaurangi radhe vrndavanesvari
vrsabhanu-sute devi pranamami hari-priye

tapta–molten; kancana–like gold; gaura–fair complexion; angi– whose body; radhe–O Radharani, vrndavana-isvari– the Queen of Vrndavana; vrsabhanu-sute–the daughter of King Vrsabhanu; devi–O goddess; pranamami–I offer my respects; hari-priye– very dear to Lord Krsna.

“I offer my respects unto Srimati Radharani, whose bodily complexion is like molten gold and who is the Queen of Vrndavana. You are the daughter of King Vrsabhanu, and You are very dear to Lord Krsna”.

PANCA-TATTVA MAHA-MANTRA

(jaya) sri-krsna-caitanya prabhu nityananda
sri-advaita gadadhara srivasadi-gaura-bhakta-vrnda

HARE KRSNA MAHA-MANTRA

Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna
Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare
Hare Rama, Hare Rama
Rama Rama, Hare Hare

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Songs of the Vaisnava Acaryas

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