Sri Advaita Acarya’s Appearance Day is later this week
Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu reveals Himself to Sri Advaita Acarya
from Sri Chaitanya Bhagavat, Madhya Kanda, Chapter 2
English translation by Bhumipati dasa
jaya jaya jagan-mangala gauracandra
dana deha’ hrdaye tomara pada-dvandva//CB, Madhya 2.001//
All glories to Gauracandra, who is the benefactor of the entire world! Please give Your lotus feet in charity to my heart.
bhakta-gosthi-sahita gauranga jaya jaya
sunile caitanya-katha bhakti labhya haya//CB, Madhya 2.002//
All glories to Sri Gauranga along with His devotees! By hearing the topics of Lord Caitanya, one attains the devotional service of the Lord.
thakurera prema dekhi’ sarva-bhakta-gana
parama-vismita haila sabakara mana//CB, Madhya 2.003//
When all the devotees observed the Lord’s love, they were all struck with wonder.
parama-santose sabe advaitera sthane
sabe kahilena yata haila darasane//CB, Madhya 2.004//
In great satisfaction they went to Advaita and informed Him of what they had seen.
bhakti-yoga-prabhave advaita mahabala
‘avatariyache prabhu’—janena sakala//CB, Madhya 2.005//
The most powerful Advaita immediately understood through the influence of His devotional service, “The Lord has incarnated.”
tathapi advaita-tattva bujhana na yaya
sei-ksane prakasiya takhane lukaya//CB, Madhya 2.006//
Yet the truth of Advaita Acarya is difficult to understand, because He sometimes reveals Himself and sometimes conceals Himself.
In Sri Caitanya-caritamrta (Adi 6.26-30, 33-37, 42-43, 113-115) it is stated: “Sri Advaita, who is a reservoir of virtues, is the main limb of Maha-Visnu. His full name is Advaita, for He is identical in all respects with that Lord. As He had formerly created all the universes, now He descended to introduce the path of bhakti. He delivered all living beings by offering the gift of krsna-bhakti. He explained the Bhagavad-gita and Srimad Bhagavatam in the light of devotional service. Since He has no other occupation than to teach devotional service, His name is Advaita Acarya. He is the spiritual master of all devotees and is the most revered personality in the world. By a combination of these two names, His name is Advaita Acarya. Sri Advaita Acarya is the principal limb of the Supreme Lord. His truths, names, and attributes are all wonderful. He worshiped Krsna with tulasi leaves and water of the Ganges and called for Him in a loud voice. Thus Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu appeared on earth, accompanied by His personal associates. It is through Him [Advaita Acarya] that Lord Caitanya spread the sankirtana movement and through Him that He delivered the world. The glory and attributes of Advaita Acarya are unlimited. How can the insignificant living entities fathom them? Sri Advaita Acarya is a principal limb of Lord Caitanya. Another limb of the Lord is Nityananda Prabhu. Sri Advaita Acarya considers Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu His master, and He thinks of Himself as a servant of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu. He forgets Himself in the joy of that conception and teaches all living entities, ‘You are servants of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.’ The glories of Sri Advaita Acarya are boundless, for His sincere vibrations brought about Lord Caitanya’s descent upon this earth. He liberated the universe by preaching sankirtana. Thus the people of the world received the treasure of love of Godhead through the mercy of Sri Advaita. Who can describe the unlimited glories of Advaita Acarya? I write here as much as I have known from great authorities.” The truth and characteristics of Sri Advaita Prabhu are incomprehensible to ordinary mundane living entities. Although by His own sweet will He sometimes reveals His own transcendental glories, He sometimes conceals His transcendental glories. Albandaru Yamunacarya has written in his Stotra-ratna (13) as follows: “O my Lord, everything within material nature is limited by time, space, and thought. Your characteristics, however, being unequaled and unsurpassed, are always transcendental to such limitations. You sometimes cover such characteristics by Your own energy, but nevertheless Your unalloyed devotees are always able to see You under all circumstances.”
suniya advaita bada harisa
hailaparama-avista hai’ kahite lagila//CB, Madhya 2.007//
When Advaita Acarya heard this news, He became fully absorbed and began to speak as follows.
“mora ajikara kathasuna, bhai-saba!
nisite dekhilunami kichu anubhava//CB, Madhya 2.008//
“O brothers! Please hear Me. Last night I saw something in a dream.
gitara pathera artha bhala na bujhiyathakilana
duhkha bhavi’ upasa kariya//CB, Madhya 2.009//
“I was not understanding well the meaning of a passage I had read in Bhagavad-gita, so I was unhappy and took rest without eating.
katho ratrye asi’ more bale eka-jana
‘uthaha acarya! jhata karaha bhojana//CB, Madhya 2.010//
“In the dead of night someone came to Me in a dream and said, ‘Rise, Acarya! Go and take Your meal.
ei patha, ei artha kahilun tomare
uthiya bhojana kara’, pujaha amare//CB, Madhya 2.011//
“I am telling You the meaning of the text that You read. Now get up, eat, and worship Me.
ara kena duhkha bhava’ paila sakala
ye lagi’ sankalpa kaila, se haila saphala
yata upavasa kaila, yata aradhana
yateka karila‘krsna’ baliya krandana
ya anite bhuja tuli’ pratijna karilaseprabhu
tomare ebe vidita haila//CB, Madhya 2.012-014//
“Why are You feeling sad? You have obtained everything. Your resolution has been fulfilled. Your fasting, Your worship, Your tears while crying out the name Krsna, and Your vow with raised arms—all to induce the Lord’s advent—have now become successful.
An elaboration of these three verses is found in the Caitanya-caritamrta (Adi 3.92, 96-110) as follows: “Advaita Acarya Gosvami is an incarnation of the Lord as a devotee. His loud calling was the cause for Krsna’s incarnation. Advaita Acarya having appeared, He found the world devoid of devotional service to Sri Krsna because people were engrossed in material affairs. Everyone was engaged in material enjoyment, whether sinfully or virtuously. No one was interested in the transcendental service of the Lord, which can give total relief from the repetition of birth and death. Seeing the activities of the world, the Acarya felt compassion and began to ponder how He could act for the people’s benefit. [Advaita Acarya thought:] ‘If Sri Krsna were to appear as an incarnation, He Himself could preach devotion by His personal example. In this Age of Kali there is no religion other than the chanting of the holy name of the Lord, but how in this age will the Lord appear as an incarnation? I shall worship Krsna in a purified state of mind. I shall constantly petition Him in humbleness. My name, “Advaita,” will be fitting if I am able to induce Krsna to inaugurate the movement of the chanting of the holy name.’ While He was thinking about how to propitiate Krsna by worship, the following verse [spoken by Narada Muni in the Gautamiya-tantra] came to His mind.
jalasya culukena va
vikrinite svam atmanam
‘Sri Krsna, who is very affectionate toward His devotees, sells Himself to a devotee who offers Him merely a tulasi leaf and a palmful of water.’ Advaita Acarya considered the meaning of the verse in this way: Not finding any way to repay the debt He owes to one who offers Him a tulasi leaf and water, Lord Krsna thinks, ‘There is no wealth in My possession that is equal to a tulasi leaf and water.’ Thus the Lord liquidates the debt by offering Himself to the devotee. Considering this, the Acarya began worshiping the Lord. Thinking of the lotus feet of Sri Krsna, He constantly offered tulasi buds in water from the Ganges. He appealed to Sri Krsna with loud calls and thus made it possible for Krsna to appear. Therefore the principal reason for Sri Caitanya’s descent is this appeal by Advaita Acarya. The Lord, the protector of religion, appears by the desire of His devotee.”
sarva-dese haibeka krsnera kirtana
ghare-ghare nagare-nagare anuksana//CB, Madhya 2.015//
“The chanting of Krsna’s names will be spread to all countries, all towns, and all houses.
brahmara durlabha bhakti achaye yateka
tomara prasade ebe sabe dekhibeka//CB, Madhya 2.016//
“Devotional service that is rare for even Lord Brahma will now be available to everyone by Your mercy.
ei srivasera ghare yateka vaisnava
brahmadiro durlabha dekhibe anubhava//CB, Madhya 2.017//
“All the Vaisnavas will experience realizations at the house of Srivasa Pandita that are rare for even Lord Brahma.
bhojana karaha tumi, amara vidaya
ara-bara asibana bhojana-velaya’//CB, Madhya 2.018//
“Therefore, eat Your meal. I am departing now, but I will come again while You are eating.’
The phrase amara vidaya means “I am taking Your leave.”
caksu meli’ cahi’ dekhi,—ei visvambhara
dekhite-dekhite matra haila antara//CB, Madhya 2.019//
“When I opened My eyes, I saw this Visvambhara, but He soon disappeared from My sight.
The word antara means “disappeared,” “vanished,” or “invisible.”
krsnera rahasya kichu na pari bujhite
kon rupe prakasa va karena kahate//CB, Madhya 2.020//
“I cannot understand Krsna’s mysteries, such as which form He manifests or in whom He manifests.
Regarding this verse, it is stated in the Caitanya-caritamrta (Adi 3.88) as follows: “Lord Sri Krsna tries to hide Himself in various ways, but nevertheless His pure devotees know Him as He is.” In the Caitanya-caritamrta (Antya 6.124) it is also stated: “The Supreme Personality of Godhead always resides either in the heart or in the home of a devotee. This fact is sometimes hidden and sometimes manifest, for the Supreme Personality of Godhead is fully independent.”
ihara agraja purve—‘visvarupa’-nama
amara sange asi’ gita karita vyakhyana//CB, Madhya 2.021//
“His elder brother, Visvarupa, used to come and study Bhagavad-gita with Me.
ei sisu—parama-madhura rupavan
bhaike dakite aisena mora sthana//CB, Madhya 2.022//
“This child, Visvambhara, was most enchantingly attractive. He used to come to My house to call His brother.
citta-vrtti hare’ sisu sundara dekhiya
asirvada kari ‘bhakti hauka’ baliya//CB, Madhya 2.023//
“On seeing the beauty of this child, My heart was captivated. I blessed Him with the words, ‘May You attain devotional service to the Lord.’
abhijatye haya bada-manusera putra
nilambara-cakravarti,—tanhara dauhitra//CB, Madhya 2.024//
“He is from an aristocratic family, for He is the son of Nilambara Cakravartis daughter.
The word abhijatye means “in aristocracy” or “in the honor of high birth.”
apane o sarva-gune parama-pandita
inhara krsnete bhakti haibe ucita//CB, Madhya 2.025//
“He is also most erudite and possesses all good qualities, so it is befitting that He has devotion to Krsna.
bada sukhi hailana e kathasuniya
‘asirvada kara’ sabe ‘tathastu’ baliya//CB, Madhya 2.026//
“I have become very pleased on hearing this news. All of you kindly bless Him, saying, ‘May it be so.’
sri-krsnera anugraha hauka sabare
krsna-name matta hau sakala-samsare//CB, Madhya 2.027//
“May the mercy of Krsna be manifest to all, and may the entire world become intoxicated by the name of Krsna.
yadi satya vastu haya, tabe eikhane
sabe asibena ei vamanara sthane”//CB, Madhya 2.028//
“If all this is true, then everyone will come to the house of this brahmana.
anande advaita kare parama-hunkara
sakala-vaisnava kare jaya-jaya-kara//CB, Madhya 2.029//
Advaita Acarya roared loudly in ecstasy, and all the Vaisnavas chanted in jubilation.
‘hari hari’ bali’ dake vadana sabara
uthila kirtana-rupa krsna-avatara//CB, Madhya 2.030//
As they all chanted the names of Hari, Lord Krsna manifested there in the form of kirtana.
All the residents of Sri Navadvipa-Mayapur began to hear and chant the sound vibration of Sri Hari’s names, which are nondifferent from Hari Himself, with their pure service-inclined tongues. As a result, Lord Krsna, who is nondifferent from His holy names, appeared there in the form of His glorification, sound vibration, and holy names.
keha bale,—“nimani-pandita bhala haile
tabe sankirtana kari’ maha-kutuhale”//CB, Madhya 2.031//
Someone said, “When Nimai Pandita becomes a devotee, then we will have tumultuous kirtanas.”
The word bhala refers to a nonenvious saintly person, a devotee, or a Vaisnava.
acaryere pranati kariya bhakta-gana
anande calila kari’ hari-sankirtana//CB, Madhya 2.032//
All the devotees then offered their obeisances to Advaita Acarya and left, chanting the names of Hari.