Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu Meets Sri Isvara Puri at Gaya and Accepts Initiation from Him,
from Sri Chaitanya Bhagavat, Adi Kanda, English translation by Bhumipati dasa, Commentary by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Prabhupada
carana-prabhava suni’ vipra-gana mukhe
avista haila prabhu premananda-sukhe//CB, Adi 17.42//
Hearing the glories of the Lord’s lotus feet from the brahmanas, the Lord became absorbed in ecstatic love.
The phrase carana-prabhava is explained as follows: Imagining the Supreme Lord to be formless, the impersonalists cannot understand the wonders of the Lord’s eternal form, which attracts even self-satisfied souls. The impersonalists’ process of consideration arises from material conceptions. After subduing the impersonal philosophy, the lotus feet of the Lord were installed on the head of Gayasura at Gaya; these lotus feet of the Lord are the source of all spiritual pastimes. The voidism of the Buddhists and the impersonalism of the pancopasakas are buried under these lotus feet of Gadadhara. Since the pancopasakas ultimately become impersonalists, they are simply Buddhists in disguise. The conceptions of the fruitive workers who are opposed to Vedic injunctions are under the shelter of ignorance; the conceptions of the Buddhists are opposed to the Vedas and deny spiritual existence; and the conceptions of the impersonalists, though not directly Buddhist, superficially follow the Vedas, deny material existence, and are a covered form of Buddhism. Since the covered Buddhist impersonalists and their followers, the pancopasakas, consider the eternal form and eternal lotus feet of Gadadhara as material, perceivable by their senses, and products of material nature, they are eternally bereft of the good fortune of seeing them. The devotees who accept the eternally variegated pastimes of the Lord never give respect to the philosophy of covered Buddhism that superficially follows the Vedas. The lotus feet of the Lord attract Siva, Brahma, Sukadeva, and many other self-satisfied souls; they are the eternal Absolute Truth, or sac-cid-ananda-vigraha. Therefore the impersonalists’ conception of pancopasana, which is meant for cheating people, is nothing but a means for cheating innocent foolish people. Therefore the most intelligent devotees never accept impersonalism, the covered form of Buddhism.
asru-dhara vahe dui sri-padma-nayane
loma-harsa-kampa haila carana-darsane//CB, Adi 17.43//
As the Lord looked at those lotus feet, tears flowed from His lotus eyes, His hairs stood on end, and He began shivering.
sarva-jagatera bhagye prabhu gauracandra
prema-bhakti-prakasera karila arambha//CB, Adi 17.44//
Lord Gauracandra then began to manifest ecstatic devotional service for the benefit of the entire world.
Sri Gaurasundara appeared in this world in order to bestow eternal benefit on the universe. So far He had not manifested any sign of awarding loving devotion to the people of this world. But after seeing the lotus feet of the Lord at Gaya, He inaugurated His pastimes of awarding loving devotion to the people of the world. Understanding that these lotus feet of the Lord had appeared in the material world to give pious persons who are free from the clutches of impersonalism an opportunity to serve the Lord’s lotus feet, the Lord became overwhelmed with the eight transformations of ecstatic love. Being bereft of Krsna’s service, persons who are averse to Krsna in this world maintain the sinful desire of becoming the Lord or the enjoyer of the material world. After destroying the conditioned souls’ desire for material enjoyment or liberation, when the lotus feet of the Lord appear in the purified hearts of the living entities, then their propensity for serving the Lord is awakened. In order to exhibit and preach this great truth, the Lord accepted the dress of a devotee and had darsana of the transcendental lotus feet of Gadadhara through His service inclined senses. When living entities bound by gross and subtle chains wander throughout the material sky, they remain averse to the service of the Lord. But when their service propensity is awakened on the strength of mercy received from Hari, Guru, and Vaisnava, then the lotus feet of the worshipable Lord Visnu become the object of those servants’ awakened spiritual propensity. Without a service mentality, one cannot become fortunate enough to see the form of the Lord. Without the piety resulting from devotional service, one’s faith does not awaken. On the strength of piety born of the devotees’ mercy, a living entity receives the opportunity to hear topics of Lord Hari. Sometimes on the strength of piety born from Krsna’s mercy a living entity becomes freed from the bondage to material sense objects and thus encounters the worshipable Lord Krsna—this is spiritual vision. When, after full surrender, a living entity hears and glorifies topics of Lord Krsna, the propensity of his consciousness is constantly engaged in the service of Krsna—this is the result of piety born of a devotee’s mercy. In spite of being the only worshipable object of all surrendered souls, Sri Gaurasundara considered Himself a servant of the worshipable object and thus began to propagate transcendental love of Krsna by chanting His glories. The eight transformations of ecstatic love manifested in the body of the Lord as a result of seeing the lotus feet of Gadadhara marked the beginning of His propagation of loving devotional service.
avicchinna ganga vahe prabhura nayane
parama-adbhuta saba dekhe vipra-gane//CB, Adi 17.45//
The brahmanas were all startled to see tears flow from the Lord’s eyes like the unbroken flow of the Ganges.
daiva-yoge isvara-puri o sei-ksane
ailena isvara-icchaya sei-sthane//CB, Adi 17.46//
By the divine will of the Supreme Lord, at that moment Sri Isvara Puri arrived at that place.
When Lord Sri Gaurasundara’s hair stood on end due to love of God while seeing His own lotus feet, by the will of the Lord and by providence, Sri Isvara Puripada arrived there as a mahanta-guru in order to serve his own Lord by assisting Him in His pastimes. In order to disclose that He is a descendent of Srimad Purnaprajna Madhvacarya Anandatirtha in the Vedic disciplic succession, Sri Gaurasundara, who is the Supreme Lord of all acaryas, inspired Isvara Puripada to come there.
isvara-purire dekhi’ sri-gaurasundara
namaskarilena ati kariya adara//CB, Adi 17.47//
On seeing Sri Isvara Puri, Sri Gaurasundara respectfully offered him obeisances.
isvara-puri o gauracandrere dekhiya
alingana karilena maha-harsa haiya//CB, Adi 17.48//
Isvara Puri was also delighted to see Gauracandra, and he happily embraced Him.
donhakara vigraha donhakara prema-jale
sincita haila premananda-kutuhale//CB, Adi 17.49//
In the ecstasy of meeting each other, they both became soaked with tears of love.
As an affectionate, unalloyed, confidential disciple of Madhavendra Puri, who is the original seedling of the desire tree of love of God, Sri Isvara Puripada is attached to prema-bhakti, loving devotional service. By seeing Gaurasundara’s display of a devotee’s characteristics, the eternally perfect mood of the devotees was enhanced and manifested. Now, for the benefit of people, the meeting between the Supreme Lord and the topmost devotee and mahanta-guru blossomed their flowerlike transformations of ecstatic love that destroyed the contamination in the polluted hearts of persons who were averse to Krsna. Being filled with wonderful ecstasy, Sri Gaurasundara began to describe the glories of the lotus feet of the spiritual master, who is the bestower of transcendental knowledge and who is unlimitedly superior to Gaya-tirtha.
prabhu bale,—“gaya-yatra saphala amara
yata-ksane dekhilana carana tomara//CB, Adi 17.50//
The Lord said, “My journey to Gaya has become successful the moment I was able to see your lotus feet.
While wandering throughout the fourteen worlds under the shelter of karma and jnana, by good fortune and piety resulting from devotional service, the living entities receive the opportunity to see the lotus feet of the spiritual master, who is the reservoir of the seed of devotional service. Just by seeing the spiritual master, one’s unauthorized, mundane, sensual, argument-based knowledge is checked and the topmost shining glories of devotional service manifest in the heart. This is the fruit of visiting holy places. Srimad Bhaktivinoda Thakura, the crest-jewel of the mahajanas, has written in his Kalyana-kalpa-taru as follows:
mana, tumi tirthe sada rata ayodhya,
mathura, maya, kasi, kanci, avantiya,
dvaravati, ara ache yata
“My dear mind, you are always attached to the different places of pilgrimage such as Ayodhya, Mathura, Haridvara, Kasi, Kanci, Avanti, and Dvaraka.
tumi caha bhramibare, e sakala bare bare,
mukti-labha karibara tare
se sakala taba bhrama, nirarthaka parisrama,
citta sthira tirthe nahi kare
“You want to travel to all these holy places of pilgrimage again and again for the sake of obtaining liberation. But it is clear that your heart is not becoming resolutely fixed by going to all these places; therefore all of your wanderings are simply useless labor.
tirtha-phala sadhu-sanga, sadhu-sange antaranga
yatha sadhu, tatha tirtha, sthira kari’ nija citta,
sadhu-sanga kara nirantara
“The real benefit of visiting any holy place is to achieve the association of the pure-hearted devotees of the Lord living there. Establishing intimate and friendly relations with such great souls, let your heart be captivated by performing the charming worship of Lord Krsna in their association. Wherever the Lord’s devotees are living, that place becomes a place of pilgrimage. Therefore you should become fixed by constantly remaining in the company of such devotees.
ye tirthe vaisnava nai, se tirthete nahi yai,
ki labha hantiya dura-desa
yathaya vaisnava-gana, sei stana vrndavana,
sei sthane ananda asesa
“I never visit any so-called place of pilgrimage that is devoid of the presence of unalloyed devotees, for what benefit is gained by walking to such distant places? Wherever there are devotees, that place is actually Vrndavana. Only there can one find unlimited spiritual pleasure.
krsna-bhakti yei sthane, mukti dasi seikhane,
salila tathaya mandakini
giri tatha govardhana, bhumi tatha vrndavana,
avirbhuta apani hladini
“Liberation personified is herself the humble maidservant of places that are surcharged with devotion to Krsna. All the water at the place is the celestial Ganges, every hill there is Govardhana, and the very earth is indeed Vrndavana. Only such a place can manifest the eternal spiritual joy which is revealed by the Lord’s pleasure-potency.
vinoda kahiche bhai, bhramiya ki phala pai,
vaisnava-sevana mora vrata
“I ask you now, dear brother, what benefit would I get by circumambulating all the holy places of pilgrimage? Personally, my vow is to serve the Vaisnavas with firm resolution and untiring endeavor.”
tirthe pinda dile se nistare pitr-gana
seha,—yare pinda deya, tare’ sei jana
toma’ dekhilei matra koti-pitr-gana
sei-ksane sarva-bandha paya vimocana//CB, Adi 17.51-52//
“If one offers oblations to the forefathers in a holy place, then the forefathers are delivered. But one delivers only he to whom the oblation was offered. By seeing you, however, millions of forefathers are immediately freed from material bondage.
“Only those forefathers who are offered oblations at Gaya are delivered as a result of receiving those oblations, yet simply on the strength of piety accrued by seeing an eternally perfect associate of Krsna like yourself, millions of forefathers whose names are unknown are immediately delivered from the ocean of material existence. There is no need to separately offer them oblations for their deliverance. Those most fortunate living entities who receive the mercy of seeing a beloved associate of the Lord deliver millions of their forefathers from the bondage of repeated birth and death; in other words, they attain Vaikuntha through the worship of the Lord.”
ataeva tirtha nahe tomara samana
tirther o parama tumi mangala pradhana//CB, Adi 17.53//
“Therefore holy places are not equal to you, for you purify even the holy places.
“Only one who is offered oblations at Gaya is delivered, but for one who sees a Vaisnava, millions of his forefathers are liberated. Therefore the Vaisnavas are much more exalted than the holy places. You are the purifier of all holy places and a more beneficial Vaisnava guru. This is confirmed in the following statement of Dharmaraja Yudhisthira to Bhaktaraja Vidura in Srimad Bhagavatam (1.13.10):
bhavad-vidha bhagavatas tirtha-bhutah svayam vibho
tirthi-kurvanti tirthani svantah-sthena gadabhrta
‘My lord, devotees like your good self are verily holy places personified. Because you carry the Personality of Godhead within your heart, you turn all places into places of pilgrimage.’”
samsara-samudra haite uddharaha more
ei ami deha samarpilana tomare//CB, Adi 17.54//
“Please deliver Me from the ocean of material existence. I surrender Myself unto you.
Taking shelter at the lotus feet of a spiritual master is the main entrance to the practice of devotional service to the Lord. That is why the spiritual master of all servants and the acarya of abhidheya, Srila Rupa Gosvami Prabhupada, has in the course of describing the symptoms of devotional service in his Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu written as follows:
guru-pad asrayas tasmat krsna-diksadi-siksanam
visrambhena guroh seva sadhu-vartmanuvartanam
Those living entities who desire their eternal ultimate benefit and freedom from material bondage should first take shelter of a bona fide spiritual master who is a manifestation of the Supreme Lord. There is no way of being delivered from the ocean of anarthas without fully surrendering at the lotus feet of the spiritual master. Unless one takes shelter of a bona fide spiritual master who is fixed in the Absolute Truth and conversant in Vedic knowledge, a living entity cannot attain the goal of life through the process of argument. The argument-afflicted hearts of godless people who are ever-forgetful of the lotus feet of the spiritual master and who are averse to the Vedic way of life have taken shelter of the four defects— bhrama (the tendency to commit mistakes), pramada (the tendency to be illusioned), vipralipsa (the tendency to cheat) and karanapatava (imperfect senses)—in such a way that there is no scope for taking shelter of the lotus feet of the spiritual master, rather there is only gurudroha and bhagavad-droha, envy of the spiritual master and envy of the Supreme Lord. Those who are determined to merge into the ocean of material existence have no goal other than the unauthorized path of argument. They are unable to accept the shelter of the Vedic way of life or a bona fide spiritual master. If persons who are averse to the service of the Lord and who follow the path of argument proudly accept a so-called guru who is an attached householder covered by unauthorized seminal considerations as their spiritual master, and if, being induced by blind faith, they continue like this for millions of kalpas, they will never achieve eternal benefit. In order to propagate this great truth and educate people, jagad-guru Sri Gaurasundara considered Himself a surrendered soul at the lotus feet of the guru and thus instructed everyone about saranagati, in the form of atma-niksepa and karpanya, full self-surrender and humility. Those who follow the path of material argument in order to fulfil the deficiency and insubstantiality of a spiritual master who is fully surrendered to Krsna and whose all endeavors are meant for the pleasure of Krsna have no possibility of being delivered from the pangs of hell.
‘krsna-pada-padmera amrta-rasa pana
amare karao tumi’—ei cahi dana”//CB, Adi 17.55//
“I beg that you make Me drink the nectar of Krsna’s lotus feet.”
Persons in whose hearts the eternally beneficial realization, sajatiyasaye snigdhe sadhau sangah svato vare—“One should associate with the devotees who are more advanced than oneself and endowed with a similar type of affection for the Lord,” is prominent can alone fully surrender, or take shelter of the lotus feet of the spiritual master. Considering that the lotus feet of the Supreme Lord are the only object of service and to set example for practitioners who desire love of God, the Lord, who is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, exhibited the pastime of accepting Sri Isvara Puripada, the recipient of Madhavendra Puripada’s mercy, as His spiritual master and thus bestowed mercy on him. There was no contradiction in the begging at the lotus feet of the spiritual master for the alms of drinking the nectar of Krsna’s lotus feet by the Lord, who acted as the disciple, and the awarding of those alms by the donor Isvara Puripada, who acted as the guru.
na dhanam na janam na sundarim
kavitam va jagad-isa kamaye
mama janmani janmanisvare
bhavatad bhaktir ahaituki tvayi
“O Almighty Lord, I have no desire to accumulate wealth, nor to enjoy beautiful women. Nor do I want any number of followers. What I want only is the causeless mercy of Your devotional service in my life, birth after birth.” The purport of this verse offered by the Lord in prayer at the lotus feet of Sri Gadadhara manifested and constantly remained in the heart of Sri Isvara Puripada on the strength of Sri Madhavendra Puri’s full nonduplicitous mercy.
balena isvara-puri,—“sunaha, pandita!
tumi ye isvara-amsa,—janinu niscita//CB, Adi 17.56//
Isvara Puri then said, “Listen, dear Pandita. I know without doubt that You are an expansion of the Supreme Lord.
Isvara Puripada, the Lord’s associate and servant of the maha-bhagavata guru, constantly engaged in chanting the holy names of the Lord. Therefore, since the principle of offering respect to others without expecting any honor was brightly shining in him, he instructed Gaurasundara, who acted as his disciple, as follows: “You are the knower of all living entities’ bondage and liberation. You are an expansion of the Supreme Lord; in other words, You are directly the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and all other controllers are Your expansions—I am confident about this.” In consideration of the Absolute Truth, the living entities are the fragmental parts and parcels of the Lord, who is full in six opulences. But in this case, since Gaurasundara was enacting the pastimes of a disciple, He exhibited the pastime of hearing in disciplic succession from the lotus mouth of His spiritual master the conclusion that the living entities are parts of Lord Visnu, in other words, they are separated parts.
jivera ‘svarupa’ haya——krsnera ‘nitya-dasa’
krsnera ‘tatastha-sakti’ ‘bhedabheda-prakasa
“It is the living entity’s constitutional position to be an eternal servant of Krsna because he is the marginal energy of Krsna and a manifestation simultaneously one and different from the Lord.” Constitutionally, the separated parts of the Supreme Lord have no material designations; in other words, the living entities cannot remain in any occupation other than the service of the Lord. Living entities who are forgetful of their constitutional position and averse to the service of the Lord are subjected to the bondage of material existence. In that state the valor of body and mind is prominent in their activities. The Lord is the Supersoul, and the living entity is an infinitesimal soul and therefore His fragmental part. The Lord is the infinitely potent, fully cognizant personality, and the spirit soul is a minute, liberated spiritual spark.
ye tomara panditya, ye caritra tomara
seha ki isvara-amsa bai haya ara?//CB, Adi 17.57//
“Can anyone other than an expansion of the Supreme Lord possess the extraordinary learning and characteristics that You have?
“Due to absorption in maya, materially conditioned souls are under the control of the illusory energy of the Lord, but for pure spirit souls there is no scope for absorption in maya. The characteristics of conditioned souls and the characteristics of liberated souls are not ‘one;’ therefore I do not consider You anyone other than an expansion of the Supreme Lord. It is understood from Your learning and characteristics that You are none other than an expansion of the Supreme Lord.”
yena aji ami subha svapna dekhilana
saksate tahara phala ei pailana//CB, Adi 17.58//
“I had an auspicious dream last night, and today I’ve obtained the fruits of that dream.
satya kahi, pandita! tomara darasane
parananda-sukha yena pai anuksane//CB, Adi 17.59//
“O Pandita, I’m telling You the truth! I’m feeling great ecstasy every moment since I’ve seen You.
yadavadhi toma’ dekhiyachi nadiyaya
tadavadhi citte ara kichu nahi bhaya//CB, Adi 17.60//
“From the time I saw You in Nadia, my heart has had no other attraction.
satya ei kahi,—ithe anya kichu nai
krsna-darasana-sukha toma’ dekhi pai”//CB, Adi 17.61//
“I’m speaking the truth, nothing else. When I see You, I feel the happiness of seeing Krsna.”
“Since I saw You in Navadvipa, no other subject matter has occupied my heart. This is indeed the truth. There is no doubt about it. As soon as I see You with my eyes smeared with the ointment of love, I experience the same indescribable happiness as when I see Krsna.”
suni’ priya isvara-purira satya vakya
hasiya balena prabhu,—“mora bada bhagya”//CB, Adi 17.62//
Hearing His beloved Isvara Puri’s truthful words, the Lord smiled and said, “It is My great fortune.”
ei-mata kata ara kautuka-sambhasa
yata haila, taha varnibena veda-vyasa//CB, Adi 17.63//
In this way the two exchanged many other pleasing words which will be described in the future by Vedavyasa.
tabe prabhu tana sthane anumati laiya
tirtha-sraddha karibare vasila asiya//CB, Adi 17.64//
The Lord then took leave of Isvara Puri and went to offer oblations to His forefathers.
It is the prescribed duty for one to offer oblations to his forefathers when visiting a holy place. Gaurahari enacted the pastime of taking permission from Isvara Puripada and then offering oblations at Gaya according to prescribed duties. The path of pure devotional service and the path of fruitive activities based on the smrtis are not similar. Only after rejecting fruitive activities can one enter into spiritual life. Since materially conditioned living entities are not self-realized or God-realized before oblations to their forefathers and the demigods according to external considerations.
Interveneing verses describe the Lord’s offering of sraddha and visiting various holy places near Gaya
ei-mata sarva-sthane sraddhadi kariya
vasaya calila vipra-gane santosiya//CB, Adi 17.79//
After completing His offerings of sraddha and satisfying the brahmanas at all the recommended places, the Lord returned to His room.
Regarding the karma-kanda system of performing sraddha at Gaya, in the Visnu Purana (2.16.4) Aurva spoke to Sagara Maharaja the following words:
gayam upetya yah sraddham karoti prthivi pate
saphalam tasya taj janma jayate pitr tustidam
“O King, a person who goes to Gaya and offers oblations makes his life successful by satisfying his forefathers.”
tabe mahaprabhu kata-ksane sustha haiya
randhana karite prabhu vasilena giya//CB, Adi 17.80//
After He took some rest, the Lord then sat down to cook.
randhana sampurna haila, henai samaya
ailena sri-isvara-puri mahasaya//CB, Adi 17.81//
As soon as the Lord finished cooking, Sri Isvara Puri arrived there.
prema-yoge krsna-nama balite balite
ailena prabhu-sthane dhulite dhulite//CB, Adi 17.82//
Isvara Puri’s head was rolling back and forth in ecstatic love as he arrived there chanting the names of Krsna.
While chanting the holy names of Krsna, Isvara Puripada was overwhelmed with love of God and unable to control his balance as he came before Sri Gaurasundara. At that time the Lord was engaged in cooking.
randhana ediya prabhu parama-sambhrame
namaskari’ tane vasailena asane//CB, Adi 17.83//
The Lord immediately left the kitchen and, after respectfully offered obeisances, He seated Isvara Puri comfortably.
hasiya balena puri,—“sunaha, pandita!
bhalai samaye hailana upanita”//CB, Adi 17.84//
Isvara Puri smiled and said, “Listen, O Pandita. I see I’ve come at the right time.”
prabhu bale,—“yabe haila bhagyera udaya
ei anna bhiksa aji kara mahasaya”//CB, Adi 17.85//
The Lord replied, “It will be My good fortune if you accept your meal here today.”
hasiya balena puri,—“tumi ki paibe?”
prabhu bale,—“ami anna randhibana ebe”//CB, Adi 17.86//
Isvara Puri smiled and said, “Then what will You eat?” The Lord replied, “I will cook again.”
puri bale,—“ki-karye karibe ara paka?
ye anna achaye, taha kara’ dui-bhaga//CB, Adi 17.87//
Isvara Puri then said, “What is the need for cooking again? Divide whatever You have in two portions.”
hasiya balena prabhu,—“yadi ama’ cao
ye anna haiyache, taha tumi saba khao//CB, Adi 17.88//
The Lord smiled and said, “If you really want to please Me, then eat whatever I’ve cooked.
tilarddheke ara anna randhibana ami
na kara’ sankoca kichu, bhiksa kara, tumi”//CB, Adi 17.89//
“I’ll cook again within a moment. You take your meal without hesitation.”
tabe prabhu apanara anna tanre diya
ara anna randhite se gela harsa haiya//CB, Adi 17.90//
The Lord then gave His meal to Isvara Puri and happily went to cook for Himself.
hena krpa prabhura isvara-puri-prati
purir o nahika krsna-chada anya-mati//CB, Adi 17.91//
Isvara Puri’s mind never deviated from the lotus feet of Krsna, therefore the Lord bestowed such mercy on him.
sri-haste apane prabhu kare parivesana
parananda-sukhe puri karena bhojana//CB, Adi 17.92//
The Lord served Isvara Puri with His own hands, and Isvara Puri thus ate in great ecstasy.
sei-ksane rama-devi ati-alaksite
prabhura nimitta anna randhila tvarite//CB, Adi 17.93//
At that time Ramadevi, the goddess of fortune, quickly cooked for the Lord while remaining unseen by all.
Remaining out of the sight of materially conditioned living entities, Sri Maha-Laksmidevi, who is the dearmost maidservant of Gaura-Narayana, immediately cooked nectarean foodstuffs for her beloved husband.
tabe prabhu age tane bhiksa karaiya
apane o bhojana karila harsa haiya//CB, Adi 17.94//
Then, after the Lord first fed Isvara Puri, He happily ate Himself.
isvara-purira sange prabhura bhojana
ihara sravane mile krsna-prema-dhana//CB, Adi 17.95//
One who hears about the Lord taking His meal with Isvara Puri will achieve the wealth of love of Krsna.
tabe prabhu isvara-purira sarva-ange
apane sri-haste lepilena divya-gandhe//CB, Adi 17.96//
The Lord with His own hands then smeared sandalwood paste on the body of Isvara Puri.
The jagad-guru Lord set the ideal example of serving the spiritual master by personally smearing the body of Isvara Puripada with sandalwood pulp as a menial disciple. While serving the spiritual master, who is a manifestation of the Supreme Lord, Gaurahari taught everyone that the best ingredients of this world should never be used for one’s own sense gratification, rather they should be utilized only for the service of Hari, Guru, and Vaisnava.
yata prita isvarera isvara-purire
taha varnibare kon jana sakti dhare//CB, Adi 17.97//
Who has the ability to describe the Lord’s love for Sri Isvara Puri?
The word isvarera refers to the Supreme Lord, Sri Gaurasundara.
apane isvara sri-caitanya bhagavan
dekhilena isvara-purira janma-sthana//CB, Adi 17.98//
The Supreme Lord, Sri Caitanya, personally visited the birthplace of Isvara Puri.
The birthplace of Isvara Puri is situated in the village of Kumarahatta, which is 3 km. from the Halisahara Station on the E.B.R. line. Recently the sakhibhekis have introduced their unauthorized standard of worship at this birthsite. Seeing, offering obeisances to, and circumambulating the Lord’s birthplace are some of the limbs of pure devotional service.
prabhu bale,—“kumarahatterer namaskara
sri-isvara-purira ye-grame avatara”//CB, Adi 17.99//
The Lord said, “I offer My obeisances to the village of Kumarahatta, where Sri Isvara Puri appeared.”
kandilena vistara caitanya sei sthane
ara sabda kichu nahi ‘isvara-puri’ vine//CB, Adi 17.100//
Lord Caitanya cried profusely at that place and spoke nothing other than the name of Isvara Puri.
se-sthanera mrttika apane prabhu tuli’
lailena bahirvase bandhi’ eka jhuli//CB, Adi 17.101//
The Lord took some dust from the birthplace of Isvara Puri and tied it in His cloth.
prabhu bale,—“isvara-purira janma-sthana
e mrttika-amara jivana dhana-prana//CB, Adi 17.102//
The Lord said, “The dust from the birthplace of Isvara Puri is My life, wealth, and living force.”
hena isvarera prita isvara-purire
bhaktere badate prabhu saba sakti dhare//CB, Adi 17.103//
The Lord exhibited such affection for Isvara Puri, because He takes pleasure in increasing the glories of His devotees.
Because the Lord worships His devotees, Lord Gaurasundara increased the prestige of His dear devotees by accepting Isvara Puripada as His spiritual master.
prabhu bale,—“gaya karite ye ailana
satya haila,—isvara-purire dekhilana”//CB, Adi 17.104//
The Lord said, “I came to Gaya to offer oblations to My forefathers. Now that I have seen Isvara Puri, My journey has become successful.”
In order to teach His sadhaka disciples, the Lord, as spiritual master of the world and teacher of all, personally spoke the following words: “On the occasion of My visit to Gaya, I was fortunate enough to see the lotus feet of the spiritual master, who is the personification of the holy places, and as a result I have attained the fruits of visiting all holy places.”
ara dine nibhrte isvara-puri-sthane
mantra-diksa cahilena madhura-vacane//CB, Adi 17.105//
On another day the Lord went privately to Isvara Puri and in sweet words requested him for initiation.
The phrase mantra-diksa is defined in the Bhakti-sandarbha (207) as mantra-diksa-rupah anugrahah—“receiving mercy in the form of initiation.” According to the passage, mananat trayate yasmat tasman mantrah prakirtitah, a mantra is that which delivers one from manana, or absorption in the separate temporary objects of the temporary, external, enjoyable world, or that which delivers the material enjoyer from the principle of enjoying material existence. It is stated in the Visnu-yamala:
divyam jnanam yato dadyat kuryat papasya sanksayam
tasmad dikseti sa prokta desikais tattva-kovidaih
“Diksa is the process by which one can awaken his transcendental knowledge and vanquish all reactions caused by sinful activity. A person expert in the study of the revealed scriptures knows this process as diksa.” According to regulative principles, the initiation ceremony has five factors. Among them, the three samskaras—tapa-samskara, urdhvapundra-samskara, and nama-samskara—are found in the gross material world. Apart from these three, those who are madhyama-adhikaris can undergo mantra-samskara and yoga-samskara and thus become fully initiated with the five samskaras. Thereafter, those who perform navejyakarma, or nine forms of arcana, and master the knowledge of arthapancaka are called uttama-adhikaris. Persons who have received pancaratrika initiation are qualified to worship the Deities. By the influence of mantra-diksa, a living entity attains freedom from the bondage of material existence. Then, by attaining perfection in chanting one’s mantra, knowledge of the Lord and His holy names awakens in one’s heart and one becomes qualified to serve the lotus feet of Krsna. In the bhagavata-sampradaya, the kanistha-adhikaris who engage in Deity worship lack scientific knowledge regarding the devotees of the Lord, because at that stage, apart from worshiping the Deity, appreciation for the wonderfully glorious service of the Lord’s associates does not manifest in their materialistic hearts. Gradually, due to increased good fortune and the mercy of the Lord, when the living entities surpass the stage of kanistha and become conversant in knowledge about the devotees, then by the result of achieving transcendental knowledge the four following principles are found: love for the Lord, friendship with those who are attached to His servants, display of mercy by instructing the innocent who are ignorant of the Absolute Truth, and neglect of those who are opposed to the Lord. In the advanced stage of uttama-adhikari, the principle of neglecting those who are averse to the Lord is slackened and, as a result, one obtains indirect cultivation of Krsna consciousness by which the conception that everything in the world is meant for the service of Krsna awakens and thus one always and everywhere continually remembers the Lord.
puri bale,—“mantra va baliya kon katha?
prana ami dite pari tomare sarvatha”//CB, Adi 17.106//
Isvara Puri replied, “What to speak of mantra, I can give my life to You.”
tabe tana sthane siksa-guru narayana
karilena dasaksara-mantrera grahana//CB, Adi 17.107//
Then in order to instruct everyone, the Lord accepted the ten syllable mantra from Isvara Puri.
Sri Gaurasundara is directly Sri Krsna. (In the first verse of Lilasuka Bilvamangala’s Sri Krsna-karnamrta it is stated: siksa-gurus ca bhagavan sikhi-pincha-maulih—“All glories to my instructing spiritual master, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who wears peacock feathers in His crown.”) Though situated in the heart of Isvara Puripada as the caityaguru Supersoul, in order to instruct everyone that it is essential for a person desiring to attain the goal of life to first take shelter at the lotus feet of the spiritual master, Mahaprabhu personally accepted Puripada as His guru and enacted the pastime of receiving the ten syllable mantra from him.
tabe prabhu pradaksina kariya purire
prabhu bale,—“deha ami dilana tomare//CB, Adi 17.108//
The Lord then circumambulated Isvara Puri and said, “I fully surrender Myself unto you.
hena subha-drsti tumi karaha amare
yena ami bhasi krsna-premera sagare”//CB, Adi 17.109//
“Please glance mercifully on Me, so that I may float in the ocean of love of Krsna.”
Some people consider the tri-varga—religiosity, economic development, and sense gratification—as the goal of life, and some consider liberation the goal of life; but most people are unable to ascertain the fifth goal, love of God, as the goal of life. In order to instruct people, jagad-guru Gaurasundara enacted the pastimes of a disciple desiring to attain love of Krsna by completely rejecting the four cheating objectives of life— dharma, artha, kama and moksa—and praying to His spiritual master, Isvara Puripada, for love of Krsna, which is the only principle goal for a devotee to achieve. Personally realizing that love of Krsna is the only goal of life, He then glorified it before Isvara Puri.
suniya prabhura vakya sri-isvara-puri
‘prabhure dilena alingana vakse dhari’//CB, Adi 17.110//
Hearing the Lord’s words, Sri Isvara Puri embraced Him.
donhara nayana-jale donhara sarira
sincita haila preme, keha nahe sthira//CB, Adi 17.111//
The bodies of both became soaked with their tears and agitated due to ecstatic love.
hena-mate isvara-purire krpa kari’
kata-dina gayaya rahila gaurahari//CB, Adi 17.112//
In this way, while bestowing mercy on Isvara Puri, Sri Gaurahari remained in Gaya for a few days.
Inexperienced material enjoyers, fruitive workers, celibates, yogis, mental speculators, and ascetics, who are all busy fulfilling their material desires that are not related to Krsna, think that Gaurasundara is a mortal living entity forced to accept the fruits of His karma like themselves, and therefore He was obliged to accept someone as His spiritual master in order to attain freedom from the bondage of material existence. Due to this offensive mentality, they display superficial respect to mundane, nondevotee, so-called gurus and thus accumulate offenses at the feet of guru-tattva, the bona fide guru. But in this case, even though Lord Caitanyadeva is personally the supreme object of worship, in order to show honor and respect for His own beloved devotee, He established him as His spiritual master and thus exhibited His real mercy.