Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Rasikānanda's 'Bhāgavatāṣṭakam' - Epilogue

Rasikānanda Prabhu and a kīrtana party


  TEXT 9 - Epilogue

etad bhāgavatāṣṭakaṁ paṭhati yaḥ śraddhānvitaḥ kṣema-daṁ
bhakty-udreka-vivardhanaṁ pratipadaṁ prema-pramoda-pradam |
premāṇaṁ paramaṁ dhruvaṁ sa labhate vṛndāvaneśātmasu
kṣipraṁ bhāgavateṣu yena vaśa-go gopāṅganā-vallabhaḥ || 9 ||
 
At every word, this Bhāgavatāṣṭakam gives prosperity, the joy of love, and abundantly increasing devotion. One who recites it with faith will certainly soon attain ultimate love for the great devotees who have the Lord of Vṛndāvana in their hearts. The beloved of the gopīs is controlled by such love.


Bhajanānanda-deva-gosvāmi-kṛta-ṭīkā:
aṣṭaka-pāṭha-phalam āha – etad iti | yo janaḥ śraddhānvitaḥ sann etad bhāgavatāṣṭakaṁ paṭhati sa bhāgateṣu paramaṁ sarvotkṛṣṭaṁ premāṇaṁ dhruvaṁ niścitaṁ kṣipraṁ śīghraṁ yathā tathā labhate iti pratyāśīḥ-pradānam | dhruvaṁ niścita-tarkayor iti śrīdharaḥ | bhāgavateṣu kīdṛśeṣu | vṛndāvaneśaḥ śrī-kṛṣṇas tasyātmāno manāṁsi sa evātmani yeṣām iti vā teṣu | ātmā puṁsi svabhāve’pi prayatna-manasor apīti medinī | etenāsyaiteṣāṁ ca parasparātmakaṁ sūcitam | sādhavo hṛdayaṁ mahyaṁ sādhūnāṁ hṛdayaṁ tv aham | mad-anyat te na jānanti nāhaṁ tebhyo manāg api (śrīmad-bhāgavatam, 9.4.68) iti śrī-bhagavad-ukteḥ | yena premṇā gopāṅganā-vallabho vaśa-go bhavati | aṣṭakaṁ viśinaṣṭi – kṣematyādi | kṣemaṁ śrī-bhagavac-caraṇa-prāpti-rūpaṁ kuśalaṁ dadātīti tat | bhakter udreka utkarṣas taṁ viśeṣeṇa vardhayatīti tat | pratipadaṁ padaṁ padaṁ prati yaḥ prema-pramodaḥ premānandas tasyāspadaṁ sthāna-rūpam || 9 ||

śrī-bhakta-vṛnda-kṛpayā tadīyāṣṭakasya ca |
vyākhyā śrī-bhajanānanda-kṛtaiṣā pūrṇatāṁ gatā ||
 
Commentary by Bhajanānandadeva Gosvāmī

Now the fruit of reciting these eight verses is being stated. One who (yaḥ) recites (paṭhati) this (etat) Bhāgavatāṣṭakam with faith (śraddhānvitaḥ) certainly (dhruvam) very soon (śīghram) attains (labhate) ultimate (parama) love (prema) for the great devotees of the Lord (bhāgavateṣu). This is the blessing of the author. According to Śrīdhara Svāmī, the word dhruva is used in the sense of certainty and logic. What are these devotees like? Their hearts (ātmasu) belong to Śrī Kṛṣṇa (vṛndāvaneśa), or else, He always lives in their hearts. According to the Medinī-kośa, the masculine word ātman is used in the sense of nature, effort and mind/heart. This indicates the reciprocal relation between the Lord and His devotees, as He states:

sādhavo hṛdayaṁ mahyaṁ sādhūnāṁ hṛdayaṁ tv aham
mad-anyat te na jānanti nāhaṁ tebhyo manāg api

“The pure devotees are My heart, and I am the heart of the pure devotees. My devotees do not know anything else but Me, and I do not know anything else but them.” (Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, 9.4.68)
The beloved of the gopīs (gopāṅganā-vallabhaḥ) becomes controlled (vaśa-gaḥ) by such love (yena). This aṣṭakam is described in the following words: it gives prosperity (kṣema-dam) in the form of attainment of the Lord’s lotus feet, increases very much (vivardhanam) the rising (udreka) of devotion (bhakti). It is the abode of the joy of love. 
It is by the mercy of the congregation of devotees that the commentary on these eight verses glorifying them has now been completed by Śrī Bhajanānandadeva Gosvāmī.

|| iti śrī-rasikānanda-murāri-viracitaṁ śrī-bhāgavatāṣṭakaṁ sampūrṇam ||
 
Thus ends the Bhāgavatāṣṭakam composed by Śrī Rasikānanda Murāri.
 

 

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Rasikānanda's 'Bhāgavatāṣṭakam' verse 8

Śyāmānanda and Rasikānanda Prabhus


TEXT 8
 
kṛṣṇād anyam ajānataḥ kṣaṇam api svapne’pi viśveśvare
tasmin bhaktim ahaitukīṁ vidadhato hṛt-kāya-vāgbhiḥ sadā |
śrīlān sad-guṇa-puñja-keli-nilayān premāvatārān ahaṁ
vande bhāgavatān imān anulavaṁ mūrdhnā nipatya kṣitau || 8 ||
 
They do not know any worshipable personality besides Lord Kṛṣṇa even for a moment in a dream, for they are always engaged in unmotivated devotional service to the Supreme Lord with mind, body and words. These fortunate souls are incarnations of love, the abode of pastimes and a multitude of good qualities. Bowing my head on the ground, I respectfully glorify these great devotees of the Lord at every moment.
 
Bhajanānanda-deva-gosvāmi-kṛta-ṭīkā:

svopāsya-niṣṭhatvam eṣāṁ varṇayan viśinaṣṭi – kṛṣṇād iti | svapne tad-avasthāyām api kṣaṇaṁ tan-mātram api | api-dvayaṁ pūrva-vat | kṛṣṇāt sac-cid-ānanda-rūpād yaśodā-stanandhaya-rūpāt para-brahmaṇa iti vā | sac-cid-ānanda-rūpāya kṛṣṇāyākliṣṭa-kāriṇe (Gopāla-tāpany-upaniṣad, 1.1)  iti tāpanī-śruteḥ | uktaṁ ca nāma-kaumudī-kāreṇa – tamāla-śyāmala-tviṣi yaśodā-stanandhaye para-brahmaṇi kṛṣṇa-śabdasya rūḍhitvād iti | anyam upāsyaṁ na jānantīti tān | viśveṣāṁ matsya-kūrmādy-avatārāṇāṁ garbhodaśāyi-prabhṛtīnāṁ vā, īśvare sarvāṁśini śrī-kṛṣṇe ete cāṁśaḥ kalāḥ puṁsaḥ kṛṣṇas tu bhagavān svayam (śrīmad-bhāgavatam, 1.3.28) iti prathamoktiḥ | uktaṁ ca brahmaṇā brahma-saṁhitāyām (5.48) – yasyaika-niḥśvasita-kālam athāvalambya jīvanti loma-vilajā jagad-aṇḍa-nāthāḥ | viṣṇur mahān sa iha yasya kalā-viśeṣo govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmīti | hṛt-kāya-vāgbhir manaḥ-śarīra-vacanairahaitukīṁ phalānusandhāna-rahitāṁ bhaktiṁ sadā vidadhati kurvantīti tān | vipūrvo dhāñaḥ kṛñ-arthatvāt | atra hṛdā saṅkalpenaiva darśanādi cintanādi vā kāyena hastādinā śrī-caraṇāravinda-sparśanādi, añjali-bandhādi vā, vācā āhvānādinā samāgamanādi stuti-pāṭhena guṇa-kathanādi veti | yataḥ śrīr bhajana-sampattir vidyate yeṣāṁ tān | matv-arthīyo lac | santo ye guṇāḥ sva-svādhikāra-niṣṭhās teṣāṁ puñjāḥ samuhās teṣāṁ keli-nilayāḥ krīḍā-gṛha-rūpās tān | sve sve’dhikāre yā niṣṭhā sa guṇaḥ parikīrtitaḥ (śrīmad-bhāgavatam, 11.20.26) iti śrīmad-ekādaśokteḥ | premṇo’vatāra-rūpān premaiva tat-tad-rūpeṇāvatīrṇavān ity arthaḥ       || 8 ||
 
Commentary by Bhajanānandadeva Gosvāmī

Here the devotees’ attachment to their worshipable Lord is described. Even (api) in a dream (svapne) even (api) for a moment, they do not know (ajānataḥ) any other worshipable personality (anyam) besides Kṛṣṇa (Kṛṣṇāt), the sad-cid-ānanda Supreme Brahman in the form of the son of Mother Yaśodā. The word api is used twice to emphasize well, as previously done. As stated in the Gopāla-tāpanī Upaniṣad, 1.1:
 
Oṁ namaḥ sac-cid-ānanda-rūpāya kṛṣṇāyākliṣṭa-kāriṇe

“We offer respectful obeisances to Śrī Kṛṣṇa, Whose form is eternal, full of knowledge and bliss, the deliverer from distress.”

According to Lakṣmīdhara, author of the Bhagavan-nāma-kaumudī, the word ‘kṛṣṇa’ is conventionally used in the sense of the dark color of the tamāla tree as well as the Supreme Brahman, the son of Mother Yaśodā. They do not know other worshipable personality because Lord Kṛṣṇa Himself is the source of all other incarnations such as Kūrma, Matsya, Garbhodakaśāyī Viṣṇu, etc. As stated in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, 1.3.28:
 
ete cāṁśa-kalāḥ puṁsaḥ kṛṣṇas tu bhagavān svayam

“All of the above-mentioned incarnations are either plenary portions or portions of the plenary portions of the Lord, but Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa is the original Personality of Godhead.”

It is also said by Lord Brahmā in the Brahma-saṁhitā, 5.48:

yasyaika-niḥśvasita-kālam athāvalambya
jīvanti loma-vilajā jagad-aṇḍa-nāthāḥ
viṣṇur mahān sa iha yasya kalā-viśeṣo
govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi

“Brahmā and other lords of the material universes appear from the pores of hair of Mahā-Viṣṇu and remain alive as long as the duration of His one exhalation. I adore the primeval Lord Govinda, whose expansion of an expansion is Mahā-Viṣṇu.”

They perform (vidadhataḥ) devotional service (bhaktim) with mind (hṛt), body (kāya) and words (vāgbhiḥ) without any expectation for the results (ahaitukīm). Here the verb dhā with the prefix vi is used in the sense of performing. With the mind means by engaging the thoughts in philosophy, meditation, etc.; with the body means touching His lotus feet with the hands, folding the hands in salutation, etc.; and with words means invocating His names upon meeting Him, reciting hymns of glorification, describing His transcendental qualities, etc. They are called fortunate (śrīlān) because they have the fortune of worshipping the Lord. Here the affix lac is used in the sense of possession. They are an abode (nilayān) of pastimes (keli) which contains a multitude (puñja) of good qualities, which means they are steadily engaged in their own positions. As it is stated in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, 11.20.26:

sve sve’dhikāre yā niṣṭhā sa guṇaḥ parikīrtitaḥ

“Steady engagement in one’s own position is said to be a virtue.”
 Such devotees are said to be incarnations of love personified.

 

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Rasikānanda's "Bhāgavatāṣṭakam" verse 7


Rasikānanda Prabhu


TEXT 7
premasvada-parayanan hari-pada-sphūrti-sphuran-manasan
anandaika-payo-nidhin rasa-samullasi-smita-śri-mukhan |
dhanyan sac-caritaugha-nandita-janan karunya-pūraśrayan
vande bhagavatan iman anulavam mūrdhna nipatya kṣitau || 7 ||
 
Relishing love of God as the supreme shelter, they are a unique ocean of bliss. Their hearts sparkle at the sight of Lord Hari’s lotus feet. Their beautiful smiling faces shining due to attachment to the Lord, these virtuous souls delight everyone with their saintly behavior and are a stream of mercy to those who take their shelter. Bowing my head on the ground, I respectfully glorify these great devotees of the Lord at every moment.
 
Bhajanānanda-deva-gosvāmi-kṛta-ṭīkā:
 
premāsvādenānanda-rūpatvam eṣāṁ varṇayan viśinaṣṭi – premeti | premṇāṁ ya āsvādaḥ sa eva param ayanam āśrayo yeṣāṁ tān | pūrva-padāt saṁjñāyām iti ṇatvam | pūrva-pada-sthān nimittāt parasya nasya ṇaḥ syāt saṁjñāyāṁ, na tu ga-kāra-vyavadhāne (Laghu-siddhānta-kaumudī, sūtra 1372)  iti tad-arthaḥ | hares tad-virahārti-harasya śrī-kṛṣṇasya padayor yā sphūrtis tayā sphuranti prakāśamānāni mānasāni yeṣāṁ tān | ata eva pūrvokta-jātānām ānandānām eka-payo-nidhīn mukhya-samudra-rūpān | eke mukhyānya-kevalā ity amaraḥ | rasena śrī-bhagavad-anurāgeṇa samyag ullāsituṁ śīlaṁ yasya tathā-bhūtaṁ yat smitaṁ manda-hāsas tena yā śrīḥ śobhā mukheṣu yeṣāṁ tān | śṛṅgārādau viṣe vīrye guṇe rāge drave rasa iti viśvaḥ | smitaṁ tv alakṣya-daśanaṁ netra-gaṇḍa-vikāśa-kṛt (Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu, 4.1.16) iti tal-lakṣaṇāt | dhanyān sukṛtinaḥ | sukṛtī puṇyavān dhanya ity amaraḥ | sac-caritaughena su-svabhāva-vṛndena nanditā ānanditā janā yais tān | caritaṁ caritram | śīlaṁ svabhāve sad-vṛtta iti, ogho vṛnde’mbasāṁ raya iti cāmaraḥ | pūraḥ pravāhe madhyastha iti kumudākaraḥ || 7 ||
Commentary by Bhajananandadeva Gosvami

Now the author describes the bliss of relishing love for God. The flavour (asvada) of loving emotions (prema) is their supreme shelter (parayanan). The dental ‘n’ of the word ayana turns into a cerebral ‘n’ because of the previous word of this compounded noun. In the Laghu-siddhanta-kaumudi, sūtra 1372, it is explained: pūrva-pada-sthan nimittat parasya nasya nah syat samjnayam, na tu ga-kara-vyavadhane, “A dental ‘n’ changes into a cerebral ‘n’ if there is a cause for it in the previous word of a compounded noun, provided the letter ‘g’ does not intervene.” Lord Krṣna is called Hari because he removes the grief caused by separation from Him. The devotees’ hearts (manasan) sparkle (sphurat) at the display (sphūrti) of His lotus feet (pada). Therefore such devotees are a unique ocean (eka-payo-nidhin) of bliss, which was previously described. According to the Amara-kośa, the words mukhya, anya and kevala are synonyms of unique. Their faces (mukhan) are beautiful (śri) due to their smiles (smita), which fully shine (samullasi) due to their attachment (rasa) to the Lord. According to the Viśva-kośa, the word rasa is used in the sense of loving emotions, poison, semen, quality, attachment and liquid substances. It is described in the Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu, 4.1.16:
 
smitam tv alakṣya-daśanam netra-ganda-vikaśa-krt

“A gentle smile (smita) is when the teeth are not visible and the eyes and cheeks become joyful.”
According to the Amara-kośa, the words sukrti, punyavan and dhanya are synonyms of virtuous.

Everyone (janan) is delighted (nandita) by their saintly behaviour (sac-caritaughena). The word carita means good behaviour, good character. According to the Amara-kośa, the words caritra, carita, śila and sad-vrtta are all synonyms of good behaviour, and the word ogha is used is the sense of multitude and stream of water. According to the Kumudakara-kośa, the word pūra is used in the sense of stream and intermediate.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Rasikānanda's 'Bhāgavatāṣṭakam' verse 6


śrī-śrī-rādhā-govinda, the deities worshipped by Rasikānanda Prabhu in Gopivallabhpur



TEXT 6
 
bhāvāveśa-samujjvalān pulakino harṣāśru-dhārāvalī-
nirdhautānana-paṅkajān nava-navānandād bhṛśaṁ nṛtyataḥ |
premṇoccaiś caritaṁ sa-gadgada-padaṁ gopī-pater gāyato
vande bhāgavatān imān anulavaṁ mūrdhnā nipatya kṣitau || 6 ||

Completely blazing, surcharged with loving emotions, their hairs standing on end, their lotus faces continuously washed by streams of tears of ecstasy, they intensely dance due to newer and newer bliss. With intense love and faltering words they loudly sing the pastimes of the Lord of the gopīs. Bowing my head on the ground, I respectfully glorify these great devotees of the Lord at every moment.

Bhajanānanda-deva-gosvāmi-kṛta-ṭīkā:

śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya-mahāprabhor gaṇāntaḥ-pātitvān madhura-rasāśrayatvenaiṣāṁ prema-pāravaśyaṁ varṇayan viśinaṣṭi – bhāveti | bhāvaḥ premṇaḥ prathama-vikāras tasya ya āveśas tena samyag ujjvalā dedīpyamānās tān | nirvikārātmake citte bhāvaḥ prathama-vikriyeti śrī-gosvāmi-lakṣaṇāt | viśeṣaṇa-dvārā tad vivṛṇoti – pulakinas tad-yuktān | harṣād udgatā yā aśru-dhārā tasyā yā āvalī śreṇī tayā nir nitarāṁ dhautāni ānana-paṅkajāni mukha-kamalāni yeṣāṁ tān | yato gopī-pateś caritaṁ prabandhatayā nirmitam ity arthaḥ | premṇā gadgadena saha varttamānāni padāni yasmin, tad yathā tathā uccair gāyantīti tān | etenaiṣām alaukikatvaṁ suvyaktam | tathoktam ekādaśe – evaṁ-vrataḥ sva-priya-nāma-kīrtyā jātānurāgo druta-citta uccaiḥ | hasaty atho roditi rauti gāyaty unmāda-van nṛtyati loka-bāhyaḥ (śrīmad-bhāgavatam, 11.2.40) iti
|| 6 ||

Commentary by Bhajanānandadeva Gosvāmī

As they are included among the associates of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu, they resort to the madhura-rasa and thus come under the control of love. This is what is being described here. The first transformation of love is called bhāva. Being surcharged (āveśa) with it, they completely blaze (samujjvala). As described by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī:

nirvikārātmake citte bhāvaḥ prathama-vikriyā

“Bhāva is the first transformation of loving emotions which manifests in a mind that was until then unchanged.” (Ujjvala-nīlamaṇi, 11.6)

This is described with the following adjectives. Their hairs stand on end (pulakinaḥ) and their lotus faces (ānana-paṅkajān) are continuously washed (nirdhauta) by rows (āvalī) of streams (dhārā) of tears (aśru) of ecstasy (harṣa). This is because the pastimes of the Lord of the gopīs are continuously being performed. They sing them loudly (uccaiḥ) with intense love (premṇā) and faltering words (sa-gadgada-padam). By this their transcendental status is clearly manifest, as stated in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, 11.2.40:

evaṁ-vrataḥ sva-priya-nāma-kīrtyā jātānurāgo druta-citta uccaiḥ
hasaty atho roditi rauti gāyaty unmāda-van nṛtyati loka-bāhyaḥ

“By taking such vows and loudly glorifying the holy name of the Supreme Lord, one develops attachment for Him and his heart melts. Sometimes he laughs, cries, sings and dances like a madman, indifferent to the world.”