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NAROTTAMA VILASA By Narahari dasa

Wednesday, 16 October 2019 / Published in Recent Media / 601 views

Sri Narottama Das Thakur

NAROTTAMA VILASA
By Narahari dasa

Translated by Dravida Das

THE FIRST VILASA

Oh! Supreme Lord Visvambhara, You are the husband of the goddess of fortune, and my eternal friend. Only You are capable of distributing the wealth of love of Godhead. You are known as kindhearted to those who depend upon You, therefore, oh Lord, please shower You kindness upon me.

I worship Sri Lokanatha Prabhu, who is fully surrendered to the lotus feet of Sri Sri Radha Vinode. He is the life of the devotees, and a confidential associate of Caitanya Mahaprabhu.

I worship Narottama dasa Thakura, who is especially dear to Lord Gauranga. Like a honey bee anxious for the nectar, he hovers at the lotus feet of Srila Lokanatha, absorbed in love for Radha Krsna.

I worship the disciples of Srila Narottama Prabhu who are rich in good qualities and are able to destroy all misfortune and misery.

For the pleasure of the Vaisnavas and to fulfill my own ardent desires, I am writing this book Narottama Vilasa which briefly describes the glories of Srila Narottama dasa Thakura.

All glories to the son of Saci and Jagannatha Misra, Sri Gaura Govinda, the embodiment of divine love. He is the life of Nityananda and Advaita, and the only love of Svarupa, Sanatana, Rupa, and Gopala. Lord Visvambhara, who is expert at pleasing everyone, has bound the hearts of Haridasa, Vakresvara, and Narahari with the ropes of His love, and won the friendship of Gauridasa and Gadadhara.

All glories to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and all His associates.

Oh listeners! please be kind upon me. I am an illiterate fool who knows nothing of right or wrong, yet I have been ordered by saintly persons to narrate this beautiful book Narottama Vilasa which will certainly be relished by the readers. I have offered my obeisances to the Lord in the above verses, now listen patiently and attentively as I briefly describe the glories of Sri Lokanatha Prabhu, a favorite devotee of the Lord and the light of his famous brahmana family.

He was born to Sita and Padmanabha Cakravarti in the village of Talagari in the district of Jassora. It is difficult to describe the wonderful attributes of Lokanatha’s father and mother. Padmanabha was a famous Rarhi brahmana Vaisnava and a favorite of Sri Advaita Prabhu. He was constantly absorbed in sankirtana, singing madly and crying incessantly. Those who simply observed his kirtana were also unable to check their tears.

He frequently came to Nadia for darsana of Lord Gauranga. However, after such visits upon returning to his own village he inevitably fell into the depths of despair due to intense feelings of separation from Gauranga.

He and his wife always sang the glories of Gauracandra. Sita was like her husband. She was a devoted Vaisnavi and wife. She felt extremely fortunate to have a wonderful son like Lokanatha and her happiness knew no bounds as she watched his devotion to Gauracandra blossoming day by day. Who can describe the loving care she showered upon her exalted son?

Lokanatha was always enthusiastically engaged in the Lord’s devotional service. People were spontaneously drawn by his extraordinary beauty and deep devotion. He conscientiously served his parents, and was well-versed in all of the scriptures at a very young age.

When his parents died, Lokanatha decided, after discussing with his friends, that he would give up the shackles of material existence, go to Nadia and surrender at the lotus feet of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.

The mercy of the Lord was abundantly showered upon Lokanatha during his stay in Nadia. However, after sometime Lord Caitanya requested that he go to Vraja. Lokanatha could understand the mind of the Lord, he knew that Mahaprabhu was thinking of taking sannyasa shortly. Thus Lokanatha’s departure was an indescribably pathetic scene; leaving the Lord’s association was unbearable for him. Completely despondent, Lokanatha began his journey. Crying incessantly, the path before him became practically invisible, thus in five days he walked a distance which would normally be covered in a single day. After traveling for sometime he received the heart breaking news that Mahaprabhu had taken sannyasa and, after consoling his associates, had gone to Nilacala. Lokanatha lamented, knowing the Lord had given up His beautiful curling hair.

Heavy-hearted and forlorn, Lokanatha continued his journey only because it was the order of the Lord. He arrived in Vrndavana practically lifeless, but the charming atmosphere of Vraja soothed his mind and eased his aching heart. However, after a few days Lokanatha heard that Mahaprabhu had gone to South India, and his mind became disturbed. Eager to see the Lord again, Lokanatha left for the south at once. In anxious anticipation he traveled quickly. However, after traveling a considerable distance he received news that the Lord had already left the South and returned to Nilacala [unclear] Afterwards he heard that the Lord had arrived in Vrndavana. With great anxiety Lokanatha immediately started for Vraja. However, upon reaching Vrndavana, he found that Mahaprabhu had departed for Prayaga just a few days before.

The forlorn Lokanatha sank into the depths of despair. The next morning he decided to follow Mahaprabhu to Prayaga. He could no longer tolerate the intense misery of separation from his beloved Lord. Rolling on the ground he cried pitifully until at last he feel asleep. In his dream he finally received the long awaited darsana of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu; His effulgent body was covered with yellow sandalwood paste, shining with a brilliance unknown to gold. Perfectly arranged hair, decorated with fresh flowers, surrounded His exquisite face, and His forehead was neatly marked with tilak. Who would not be captivated by His gorgeous lotus eyes, majestic eyebrows, and enticing smile which easily defeated the beauty of the moon? A sacred thread was draped across His broad chest and His long arms touched His knees. His dhoti was folded in three places and His transcendental body was bedecked with ornaments.

He spoke affectionately to Lokanatha: “I shall always be with you, relishing loving pastimes, here in My eternal abode, Navadvipa. Even great personalities like Lord Brahma are unable to understand this Dhama of Mine.” Saying this, He embraced Lokanatha and disappeared.

Lokanatha awoke, the emptiness in the Lord’s absence was intolerable and he was overwhelmed with despair. However, by Mahaprabhu’s kindness, sleep once again overtook him and the Lord, dressed in the garb of a sannyasi, once again appeared before him. “You are thinking of going to Prayaga,” the Lord said sweetly, “But what is the use of going there when you can see me here in your dream. Oh Lokanatha I also desire to be with all of you in Vrndavana. After I sent you to Vraja I took sannyasa from Kesava Bharati. At that time I was very eager to see Vrnda Vipina, but My devotees were so broken-hearted and desolate, due to my acceptance of the renounced order, that I was obliged to spend a few days in the house of Advaita Prabhu to console them. Afterwards I went to Nilacala, then later to the South. Unfortunately our paths did not cross either in the South or in Vrndavana. I know you are feeling despondent because of this and have decided to leave for Prayaga tomorrow morning, but don’t leave Vrndavana, remember that I am always with you. I shall keep you informed of my whereabouts. From Prayaga I’ll leave for Nilacala, there I will tell my dear devotees Rupa and Sanatana about you and they will meet you in Vrndavana soon. In their association you will float on the waves of happiness amidst the ocean of ecstatic love for Krsna.”

“Within a short period of time a prince named Narottama will become your disciple. He will be a gifted devotee, full of love and devotion, and empowered to save the fallen conditioned souls from hellish life. His enchanting beautiful kirtana will melt even wood or stone.” Thus speaking He embraced Lokanatha, who fell at the Lord’s feet.

Awaking and finding himself alone, Lokanatha cried pitifully, remembering the beautiful Gaurangacandra. Eventually he pacified himself, but tears continued to flow like rivers from his eyes. As dawn approached he performed his daily duties and sat down in a quiet place to chant the holy name of the Lord until a local brahmana offered him some fruits to eat. He sat under the tree for a long time until restlessness overtook him and he began wandering aimlessly throughout Vrndavana. Eventually he happened upon a beautiful secluded area where he stayed alone for a long time.

Later he happened to find out that Sri Subuddhi Misra had visited Vrndavana, followed by Sri Rupa Gosvami a bit later, but now they were both on there way to meet Sri Gaurasundara. Sanatana had also come to Vrndavana but had recently left for Nilacala. Hearing this Lokanatha could not suppress his disappointment. Sighing heavily and crying pitifully, he lamented, “Oh Rupa, Sanatana, when will I be able to live with you?” Suddenly a voice replied: “We shall definitely come to Vrndavana soon.”

Eventually Gopala Bhatta and others did come to Vrndavana. I am lost for words to describe that joyous meeting and the immense pleasure they derived from each other’s association. Sri Rupa Gosvami greeted Lokanatha with great warmth and affection, dissipating the anguish of long separation from the Lord and His devotees.

In Sanatana Gosvami’s Vaisnava Tosani he mentions his attachment for Lokanatha: “I worship Srila Kasisvara, Lokanatha, and Sri Krsnadasa who have taken shelter at the lotus feet of the dear-most Deity in Vrndavana, Srila Govinda Deva.” Raghunatha Bhatta, Gopala Bhatta, Bhugarbha Gosvami, as well as many others, dearly loved Lokanatha. Together they spent many wonderful days in Sri Vrndavana Dhama relishing the highest pinnacles of devotional happiness. Lokanatha was fully engaged in the service of his worshipful Deities, Sri Sri Radha Vinode. How he obtained these deities I have explained in Bhakti-ratnakara (page 23). Once while serving his Deities, Lokanatha suddenly saw the madhurya rupa** of Sri Gaura amalgamated with that of Sri Radha Vinode. Later, in a dream, the Lord ** revealed everything regarding His own transcendental nature. Such deep spiritual realizations gave rise to intense emotions, thus whenever Lokanatha tried to describe the divine attributes of the Lord, he would lose his composure and simply roll on the ground, cursing himself for not having personally witnessed the Lord’s pastimes.

Krsnadasa Kaviraja requested Lokanatha’s permission for writing Caitanya Caritamrta, which he received with Lokanatha’s wholehearted enthusiasm, yet both he and Gopala Bhatta, forbade Krsnadasa from mentioning their names within the book.

I have heard all of these stories from some aged persons?? Whoever hears them is extremely fortunate. The merciful Lokanatha Gosvami remained in Vrndavana and later showered his blessings upon his dear disciple, Narottama dasa. By the mercy of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Lokanatha obtained the precious gem of love of Godhead:

“I worship the lotus feet of Lokanatha Prabhu whose is opulent with the wealth of Sri Krsna Caitanya’s blessings, and whose mind is bedecked with the ornaments of love.”

“I take shelter at the lotus feet of Lokanatha Prabhu who eternally resides in Vrndavana. He is always absorbed in loving devotional service, enchanted by the transcendental pastimes of Sri Krsna. ”

“I take refuge at the lotus feet of Lokanatha Prabhu who is completely indifferent to the pains and pleasures of this material world. His mercy was fully realized only by the great scholar Narottama dasa.”

All glories to Narottama dasa Thakura, the beloved disciple of Lokanatha Gosvami.

How the illustrious Narottama took his birth in the house of Krsnananda Datta, the elder brother of Sri Purusottama, I dare not discuss elaborately here. However, for your pleasure, I shall give a brief description.

Rupa and Sanatana lived in Ramakeli, a beautiful village in a pleasant area of Gaudadesh. Although acting as high ranking ministers in the court of the king, they were always absorbed in discussing scriptures with scholars and professors. Their genius and wisdom won them fame throughout the world. In the courts of Maharastra, Karnataka, Dravida, Tailanga, Utkala, Mithila, Gaura, Gujarata, Vanga, Kasi and Kashmir they were considered the greatest scholars. (I have explained this further in Bhakti-ratnakara). Being favorites of the king, the brothers had no shortage of wealth.

Meanwhile, Sri Gauracandra was performing His all-attractive pastimes in Navadvipa. Rupa and Sanatana happened to hear reports of the Lord’s activities and were spontaneously attracted. Immediately they began writing numerous letters to Mahaprabhu, while earnestly waiting for the opportunity to meet Him personally.

The Supreme Lord, who is bound only by the love of His devotees, soon also became anxious to meet Rupa and Sanatana. After accepting sannyasa, the Lord consoled his devotees, went to Nilacala and later to Vrndavana. When Mahaprabhu started for Gaudadesh millions of people ran behind him, thus He arrived at Ramakeli surrounded by hoards of devotees.

On hearing of Lord Caitanya’s arrival, Sanatana and Rupa, as well as Kesava Chatri and other friends, were overwhelmed with joy. The royal ministers, Rupa and Sanatana, could not contain their happiness and secretly rushed to meet the associates of Lord Caitanya. By the grace of Nityananda Prabhu they were introduced to Sri Krsna Caitanya. Who can describe the intense emotions of Rupa and Sanatana at that meeting? Sri Gauracandra happily welcomed them with sweet words, as Nityananda Prabhu, Haridasa, Vakresvara, Mukunda and others stood by watching with pleasure.

Mahaprabhu stayed there for a few days constantly surrounded by an ocean of ecstatic devotees who were eager to bath in the purifying waters of the Lord’s transcendental association. Not only the general mass of people were affected by the Lord, even the Yavana king was moved by Mahaprabhu’s presence.

One day while Caitanya Mahaprabhu was dancing with his associates during sankirtana, He suddenly looked in the direction of Sri Kheturi village. A peculiar look appeared on His face, tears whelmed up in His eyes, and He cried out the name “Narottama! Narottama!” again and again. The ocean of mercy, Nityananda Raya shouted in joy, and Haridasa, Vakresvara, and others were inexplicable filled with happiness.

Witnessing the unusual behavior of the Lord, the devotees began talking amongst themselves: “Prabhu is repeatedly calling out the name of someone called Narottama.”
“It seems that this Narottama is extremely dear to the Lord, perhaps he is about to take birth soon.”
“Oh who is that fortunate man who will have such a son?” “The woman who bears him within her womb is the most fortunate lady in the world.”
“Obviously, the Lord has plans for this Narottama to fulfill His mission.”

In this way the rumors of the appearance of Narottama spread far and wide. A similar event took place again when Mahaprabhu was traveling to Nilacala, suddenly he cried out the name of Srinivasa. [unclear] These topics became known to all and everyone waited eagerly anticipating the appearance of Narottama.

Oh listeners please hear attentively as Narahari dasa narrates Narottama Vilasa.

THE SECOND VILASA

All glories to Sri Gauracandra, Nityananda Prabhu, and all the devotees of Mahaprabhu. Please bestow your mercy upon this poor fallen conditioned soul. All glories to those who hear the nectar of this Narottama Vilasa, kindly listen patiently to my narration.

The wheel of time turned, until finally, on the sixth hour of the full moon day in the month of Magha, when all auspicious signs were visible, Narottama dasa took birth to fulfill the mission of the Lord.

His mother, radiant with beauty, wept joyfully as she lovingly gazed at the charming face of her son. An unearthly effulgence suddenly illuminated the entire delivery room and happiness swelled in the hearts of everyone present. From that moment the village of Sri Kheturi became an auspicious place. The residents suddenly felt purified; as if cleansed of all misgivings. They trembled with ecstatic emotions, tears filled their eyes, and they spontaneously chanted the holy name with devotion. They rushed to the house of Krsnananda carrying all kinds of gifts for the newborn child.

The delighted Datta Mahasaya warmly welcomed them all without taking his eyes off the face of his son for a second, while Krsnananda’s exalted father distributed charity profusely to the singers, musicians and others present, for the protection of his grandson.

There was no woman in the world as fortunate as Narottama’s mother, Narayani. By the Lord’s grace she was granted the eyes to see Gauranga, Nityananda, and Advaita dancing ecstatically within her own home.

Narayani watched jubilantly as her son began to grow like the moon. Similarly, Krsnananda’s pleasure knew no bounds as he constantly stared at the jewel-like face of his son. Grateful for his good fortune, he fed the brahmanas daily.

At the appropriate time on an auspicious day, Krsnananda arranged for the ceremony of offering rice to his son. The astrologer present on that joyful occasion noted all the auspicious signs upon the child’s body and predicted that the boy would be an illustrious person: “This baby will be the greatest of men, therefore he should be called Narottama.”

The festivities went on happily until Krsnananda tried to feed his son the rice. To everyone’s dismay the child refused to eat. Although they coaxed him again and again, the boy repeatedly turned his head away, refusing to eat. The festive atmosphere was replaced with anxiety and everyone looked at each other nervously, not knowing what to do.

The thoughtful astrologer, however, reassured everyone, “Don’t worry, this baby will not accept food unless it has first been offered to Lord Visnu.”

Thus the rice was offered to Lord Visnu, then again offered to the child. To everyone’s relief, the child happily devoured it. From that day on, realizing the value of prasada, the king ordered: “Only food which has been offered to Krsna should be given to my son.” Although the worship of Krsna was customary in their family, from the time of Narottama’s birth everyone became much more attentive to the service of the Lord.

After a few years Narottama began his studies and soon proved to be a genius. Within a short time he became a scholar in all subjects. The teachers use to comment: “How is it possible that this boy can learn so quickly? Do you think he is an incarnation of God?”

He was an adorable boy and endeared himself to everyone, soon he was the talk of the town: “Just one glance at Narottama is sufficient to cool my mind and chase away all miseries.”
“From every angle of vision the prince is beautiful.” “I have never seen such a gorgeous boy.” In this way Krsnananda’s son was glorified throughout the town.

Krsnananda was happy simply to gaze upon his son, but as time passed he began to think, “My son is capable in all respects, he must be married soon. I am getting old and should follow the path of my father, it is time to be relieved of my kingly duties.” Thus he consulted with the wise Kayasthas to find a suitable bride for his son.

Meanwhile Narottama was lost in the ecstacy of love for Krsna. With eyes full of tears he joyfully worshipped his Lord privately, oblivious to everything else. In this way he lost all taste for mundane pleasures and could not bear to even hear topics related to royal pleasures and properties. Aware of their son’s growing apathy for material life, Krsnananda and Narayani were filled with anxiety and could think of nothing else. Finally they decided to appoint someone to constantly watch over their son, but still they were unable to find peace of mind.

Narottama’s home became a prison for him and he longed to be free. Although he said nothing, he was constantly waiting for the opportunity to leave home. Everyday he secretly pleaded desperately for the Lord’s help. His body became covered with dust as he rolled on the ground crying. Raising his arms in the air he begged pitifully, “Oh Gauranga! Nitai! Advaita! My Lords, please save me from this hell.”

At that time the news of Lord Gauranga’s glories was spreading throughout the world. Narottama’s only solace was when he received some word of the Lord’s pastimes. There was one aged brahmana in Sri Kheturi named Krsnadasa. He was a genuine servant of Lord Krsna and loved Narottama deeply. He could not let a single day pass without seeing Narottama. That brahmana, Krsnadasa, was so powerful by dint of his devotion, that no one dare disobey him.

Everyday after completing his worship of Krsna, Krsnadasa would visit Narottama. Narottama welcomed him with wholehearted enthusiasm, humbly falling prostrate at his feet. Offering him a seat, he would then eagerly enquiring about Lord Caitanya and His associates. Krsnadasa happily narrated the pastimes of the Lord in three parts (Adi, Madhya and Antya). He went on to glorify the transcendental activities of Nityananda and Advaita with such emotion then even wood or stone would melt upon hearing his devotional narration. He explained the life histories of Pandita Gadadhara, Pandita Srivasa, Vakresvara, Svarupa, Murari, Haridasa, Narahari Dasa, Gauridasa, Gadadhara, Vasu Ghosh, Mukunda, Sanjaya, Damodara, Kasisvara, Sri Paramananda Bhattacarya, Krsnadasa brahmacari, Lokanatha Varya, Sanatana, Rupa, Sri Gopala, Raghunatha, Raghunatha Bhatta, Sri Jiva, Subuddhi Misra, Raghava, Krsna Pandita and others.

He then narrated the story of Srinivasa Acarya’s birth. Krsnadasa took hold of Narottama’s hands and tearfully said, “Oh Narottama, how can I describe the wonderful qualities of Srinivasa? In his youth he was renowned as a great scholar and the embodiment of love and devotion. When he left for Nilacala to meet Sri Caitanya, along the way he received the stunning news that the Lord had disappeared from this world. He was devastated and immediately fell unconscious. Only due to the wish of the Lord did life remain within his body.”

The glories of the Lord’s devotees are described by Kavi Karnapura in Gunalesasucakam: “Glory to Srila Srinivasa Prabhu, the embodiment of mercy, who was born in a Rarhi brahmin family in Ghantesvari. In his childhood he conquered the world by his scholastic genius. Upon hearing about Lord Caitanya, Srinivasa rushed to Nilacala to see the Lord.”

“Glory to Srinivasa Prabhu who fell unconscious on the road to Nilacala upon hearing of Sri Mahaprabhu’s disappearance. After regaining consciousness he frantically cut his own beautiful hair and so doing hurt his forehead, then he continued on to Purusottama remembering the lotus feet of Mahaprabhu.”

In a dream Lord Caitanya appeared before Srinivasa, encouraging him to go on to Nilacala. Upon seeing Srinivasa, everyone there shed tears. Gadadhara, Vakresvara Pandita and others welcomed him into their association. Showering their mercy upon him they ordered him to go to Vrndavana. Srinivasa first took darsana of Sri Jagannatha and then started for Gauda via Srikhanda. After reaching Gauda he again returned to Nilacala via Srikhanda, but along the way he heard that Gadadhara Pandita Gosvami had disappeared from the world. Devastated, Srinivasa turned around and headed back towards Gauda, looking like a man on the verge of death. After traveling sometime he lay down and fell asleep. In his dream Sri Pandita Gosvami appeared before Srinivasa and lovingly consoled him.

When he awoke in the morning his mind was still extremely perturbed, yet he continued on towards Gauda. Along the road he met one of the residents of Gauda who informed Srinivasa about the disappearances of Prabhu Nityananda and Advaita. Again, Srinivasa fell unconscious in despair. When he came back to consciousness he immediately decided to commit suicide and began building

a fire to throw himself into. However, Nityananda and Advaita Prabhu suddenly appeared before Srinivasa. They quickly pacified him and ordered him to go to Vrndavana.

In the morning Srinivasa continued on to Gauda. In Srikhanda he met Narahari and Sri Raghunandana and bowed to their feet. This is described by Kavi Karnapura in Gunalesasucakam: “All glory to Srila Srinivasa Prabhu who went to Srikhanda and bowed before Narahari Sarkara Thakura, the dear-most associate of Sri Caitanya Candra. Being ordered by Narahari, Srinivasa also sought the favor of Yadunandana.”

When Srinivasa arrived in Navadvipa he was overwhelmed with astonishment to see the Supreme Lord Gauranga and His associates sporting happily there. Srinivasa had been granted the eyes to see this wonderful scene. Actually everyone in Navadvipa was floating in an ocean of sorrow. Srinivasa eagerly went to the house of Prabhu where Visnupriya Devi bestowed her mercy upon him. Dasa Gadadhara, Srivasa and others also welcomed Srinivasa with tears of love in their eyes. From there, Srinivasa went to Santipura to see Sita Devi. Who can describe the loving reception he received from her? In ecstatic trance he traveled on to Khardaha, there Sri Jahnava and Vasudha greeted him with great affection. He then went to Khanakula to receive the blessings of Sri Abhirama and his wife Malini devi. He then returned to Srikhanda and met Sri Narahari Thakura who bestowed his mercy upon him and again advised him to go to Vraja. With great affection Sri Raghunandana gave Srinivasa complete instructions for his journey to Vrndavana. Srinivasa went back to Yajigrama to visit his mother and after consoling her, started off alone for Vrajapura.”

After hearing this story, spontaneous love for Srinivasa arose within the heart of Narottama. Floating in a river of tears Narottama thought, “When shall I get the company of Srinivasa?” Who can understand Narottama’s state of mind? Daily he listened attentively to the stories of Prabhu and his devotees, and cursed himself for not having attained their association. His mind was always disturbed, he could not eat, nor could he sleep at night.

One day, due to the desire of the Lord, Narottama fell asleep and in his dream he saw Gauraraya. His splendid beauty could not be compared to gold, lightning, or anything else of this world. The beautiful curling hair hanging down His back could turn the mind of even the most virtuous woman. His earrings shone brightly and His lotus eyes were the trap of Cupid. His smiling face could easily defeat the effulgence of the moon, and the beautiful tilak on His forehead could capture one’s breath. His graceful hands swept down to His knees, and how broad His chest was. Beautiful jewelled garlands hung around His conch-like neck, and His deep navel was finely shaped. His thin waist defeated even the lion. His knees looked like toppled banana trees, and His feet were more attractive than lotuses. How gorgeous was His three fold loin cloth. Observing the beauty of Prabhu, Narottama shed tears of love and fell on the feet of the Lord. Placing His feet on Narottama’s head, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu said sweetly, “Oh, Narottama, look at me. I cannot bear your tears. Don’t worry, go straight to Vrndavana. There you will be initiated by my dear devotee Lokanatha. He will happily pour the nectar of the Mahamantra into your ears. I have many plans which are to be served by you.” Narottama’s sleep was then broken.

Narottama could not bear Prabhu’s disappearance and he rolled on the ground in disappointment. Thus again, due to the Lord’s wish, Narottama fell asleep. In his dream he saw Lord Caitanya on the bank of the Ganges in Navadvipa. He was enjoying His pastimes along with Nityananda, Advaita, Gadadhara, Srivasa, Svarupa, Narahari, Haridasa, Vakresvara, Mukunda, Murari, Govinda, Madhava, Vasu Ghosh, Suklambara, Gauridasa, Sri Sanjaya, Damodara, Mahesa, Sankara, and Yadu Acarya. All of them surrounded Gauranga as they engaged in sankirtana, while the people of Navadvipa witnessed their divine pastimes. Eager to inspect this beautiful scene, even Brahma, Siva and other demigods and goddesses mingled with the crowd in disguise. Even the animals and birds were charmed. Those who were born blind, were suddenly able to see and rushed to observe the extraordinary sankirtana performance. Seeing this wonderful fun, Narottama wept with joy. On seeing Narottama, Prabhu Gauracandra emotionally took him to His bosom and soaked Narottama with His tears. Narottama fell on Prabhu’s feet, and the Lord affectionately lifted him from the ground and put him in the care of Nityananda and Advaita. He also helped Narottama to obtain the mercy of His associates, and they all advised Narottama to go to Vrndavana. Narottama was unable to control his emotions. Observing the beauty of Nityananda, Narottama fell on His feet, and Nityananda put His feet on Narottama’s head, blessing him with unconditional love for Sri Gauranga, then advised him to go to Vrndavana. Upon seeing the beauty of Advaita, Narottama fell at his feet, who at once lifted Narottama and placed him at the lotus feet of Gauranga. He bowed to the feet of Gadadhara, Srivasa and others who also embraced Narottama one by one. Narottama bathed in the tears of everyone. All of them encouraged Narottama to go to Vrndavana. Narottama then woke up and it was morning. He consoled himself and finished his daily morning duties. He wept with joy as he began to see many auspicious signs, indicating good fortune. In anticipation he waited, hoping that the fortunate moment would soon arise.

Shortly thereafter, Narottama’s father and his men went to Gauda for business. Narottama seized the opportunity. He somehow managed to trick his mother, then he deceived the guard watching over him and quickly left his home secretly. In fear of being caught, Narottama did not visit Navadvipa, but started towards Vrndavana through the woods. He disguised himself in such a way that no one could identify him. For fifteen days he ran at random, then heaved a sigh of relief.

The miserable condition of Narottama’s parents was beyond description. Narottama became the talk of Gauda, “Prince Narottama must have gone to Vrajapura.”

“He must be the Narottama whom Prabhu had called for in Ramakeli village.” “The strength of mind he has manifested is not known to an ordinary man.”

In this way Narottama became very popular in that town. Nityananda, Advaita and other favorite associates of Sri Caitanya always thought of Narottama’s well being. It is said that he who was fortunate enough to have seen Narottama could forget his fear of material life.

Narottama undauntedly passed through the main roads now. Who can describe Narottama’s sincere efforts in the service of the Lord? Traveling along the road he sang the glories of Gauranga with continuous streams of tears rolling down his face. Those who just once looked upon the face of Narottama, attained peace of mind. The villages which Narottama selected to halt at each night became blessed by his presence. Whether male or female, anyone who kept company with Narottama during his journey would comment softly amongst themselves about the wonderful characteristics of Narottama: “Even the golden campaka flower would become ashamed to see the beautiful color of this young man’s complexion.”
“Look at his beautiful face and big eyes. How superb his nose, cheeks, eyebrows, forehead and ears are.”
Some one else said, “Look how long his hands are and how broad his chest is.” “Who are the fortunate parents of this extraordinary man with such beautiful knees and feet?”
Some one said, “He cannot be an ordinary human being. He must be a demigod or a son of a king.”
Another person remarked, “Alas, how sad it is that such a young man has become apathetic toward family life.”
Others said, “We wonder how his parents are living without him.” “Fie to providence, who has no mercy for this boy and has dragged him out of his family at such an young age.”

Being extremely moved by Narottama’s presence, no one wanted to return to their houses. They brought many things for Narottama to eat and offered him a comfortable bed to sleep on. But Narottama could not eat or sleep, he spent the night in sankirtana. Everyone felt sad to see the body of Narottama smeared with dust. In the morning the villagers did not want to let him go, but Narottama begged their leave. This was the normal scene which occurred daily along his journey to Vraja. Narottama stole the hearts of everyone he met. Within a short time Narottama visited all the holy places and at last, with an enchanted mind, entered Vrndavana. First of all he went to visit Visrama Ghat in Sri Mathura, where he bathed in the Yamuna and took some rest. In the solitude of the night he began kirtana there. At that time a great vaisnava resident of Mathura came there carrying many varieties of Krsna prasada and affectionately fed Narottama. Narottama asked him about the well being of Vraja. With a pierced heart the brahmana informed him of the demise of Raghunatha, Kasisvara, Rupa and Sanatana. On hearing of the disappearance of Rupa and Sanatana, Narottama fell on the ground crying. Striking his head on the ground he called out, “Kasisvara Pandita, Sri Bhatta Raghunatha.” Tears streamed from his eyes like a river and he was about to faint. Seeing the death-like state of Narottama, the brahmana took him in his lap and consoled him. They spent most of the night together discussing many topics. Late at night, due to the will of the Lord, both of them fell asleep. In Narottama’s dream, Rupa, Sanatana, Kasisvara and Raghunatha appeared before Narottama. Narottama at once fell on their feet. All of them embraced Narottama and soaked him with their tears. They spoke sweetly to Narottama, some of which the brahmana could hear. With great satisfaction they showered their blessings upon Narottama and then disappeared.

Narottama was unable to tolerate their disappearance, he began to lament gazing desperately in all directions. The brahmana was astonished to see Narottama’s condition. He hastily took Narottama in his lap and tearfully spoke sweetly to him, thanking him for his purifying association. After considerable time the brahmana’s emotions cooled and he begged Narottama to come to his house in the morning. Narottama bowed before the brahmana and requested him to let him go, “Please be kind to me and let me go, for I am dying to see the feet of the Gosvamis. Please be merciful and help me to fulfill my desires.” With tears in his eyes the brahmana affectionately took him in his lap and blessed him. He accompanied Narottama for some distance but due to his old age could not walk further. Thus he gave Narottama directions to reach Vrndavana and ordered one man to assist Narottama in his journey. After Narottama’s departure, the brahmana, with a broken heart, stood staring at the path.

While walking Narottama began to think, “Caitanya Mahaprabhu has brought such a low and unqualified man as me here to the sacred land of Vrndavana. He has sent me to the abode of mercy, Sri Lokanatha Gosvami Prabhu. Will he accept me as his servant? Will I be able to hold the lotus feet of Sri Gopala Bhatta, Sri Bhugarbha Gosvami, Sri Jiva Gosvami and others on my head? Will they show their mercy to a worthless man like me? Srinivasa Acarya who is the embodiment of love, will he love a poor soul like me?” Thinking in this way his eyes filled with tears, his body trembled uncontrollably and he was unable to walk a single step further.

Meanwhile, on the same night that Narottama entered Vrndavana, Srinivasa suddenly became overwhelmed with joy for no apparent reason. He took this as a good sign and tears of love began to fall from his eyes as he thought, “I’m probably going to meet a very dear friend.” In eager anticipation he began kirtana and continued on throughout the night. However, late into the night he fell asleep. In his dream Sri Rupa Gosvami appeared before him saying, “Oh Srinivasa, in the morning you will meet Narottama.” Thus speaking, he disappeared.

In the morning when Srinivasa awoke he rushed to meet Sri Jiva Gosvami and revealed his dream. Sri Jiva Gosvami was very happy to hear the news, as he had been in great anxiety waiting for Narottama’s arrival. He told Srinivasa, “Previously Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu told me about Narottama, and I have already told you about him. This is that Narottama for whom we have been waiting for so long.” Saying this, Sri Jiva hurried off to the temple of Sri Govinda, and Srinivasa happily returned to his house.

Suddenly a person approached Srinivasa and informed him, “A prince has come from Gauda. He is a young man with beautiful features and his body is soaked with tears. I cannot describe the wonderful emotions of that man after observing the face of Sri Govinda. Crying incessantly, Sri Jiva Gosvami took him in his lap and welcomed him with sweet words. He sent me to bring you to that place.” Hearing this, Srinivasa could not control his emotions and began running to the temple of Govinda.

Srinivasa was overwhelmed to at last see Narottama. Like a poor man who has gained a priceless gem, Srinivasa rushed to embrace Narottama. What Srinivasa expressed to Narottama through his embrace, I am unable to describe. Nor can I explain with one mouth how Narottama felt upon meeting Srinivasa. Everyone began to whisper about the uncommon friendship between Srinivasa and Narottama. They became such close friends that one could hardly differentiate one from the other. Sri Govinda had at last fulfilled the desires of Narottama. Sri Krsna Pandita, the head priest of Sri Govinda, brought the garlands worn by the Deity for both of them. It should be noted that Sri Krsna Pandita was a great scholar and intimate associate of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. After the demise of Kasisvara Pandita, Sri Krsna Pandita became the head priest of Sri Govinda. Everyone knew that Sri Krsna Pandita had great love for Narottama. Narottama humbly bowed to the feet of Sri Krsna Pandita.

Sri Jiva Gosvami quickly took Narottama to the solitary hermitage of Sri Lokanatha Gosvami. They found him alone in a secluded place where he had been suffering the misery of separation from Rupa and Sanatana. Sri Jiva Gosvami bowed to his feet and slowly told him about Narottama. Lokanatha had been restlessly waiting for Narottama to come, now seeing Narottama before him, Lokanatha began to float in an ocean of tears. Narottama fell at the feet of his spiritual master, and Lokanatha placed his feet on Narottama’s head. With sweet words he assured Narottama that after a few days he would initiate him. Again and again Lokanatha asked Sri Jiva, “Please help him to establish his grasp of devotional books.” To Srinivasa he affectionately said, “Always make sure he is properly situated on the path of devotion”. Thus speaking, Lokanatha uttered the names of Rupa and Sanatana and extracted a heavy sigh. Observing Gosvami, Sri Jiva was unable to check his tears. Sri Jiva took his leave and left to take darsana of the lotus feet of Sri Radhavinoda.

Thereafter Sri Jiva Gosvami took Narottama to meet Gopala Bhatta Gosvami. He was also sitting alone in a secluded place, cultivating the memories of Rupa and Sanatana. I have no words to accurately depict the sweet relationship between Sri Gopala Bhatta and Sri Sanatana Gosvami. This has been described in one sloka: “I worship Sri Gopala Bhatta Gosvami whose heart is filled with love for Sanatana and the friendship of Sri Rupa. He who worships them, is able to obtain mercy of Sri Gopala Bhatta. I worship Sri Gopala Bhatta whose life and soul is Sri Radharamana.”

Sri Jiva Gosvami bowed to the feet of Gopala Bhatta Gosvami, who was very happy to meet Narottama. Narottama fell at his feet and Gosvami at once showed him great affection, warmly embracing Narottama and soaking his body with tears. Sri Jiva and Narottama offered their obeisances and went for darsana of the lotus feet of Sri Radharamana. They also went to the temples of Sri Govinda, Gopinatha and Madanamohana.

While conversing together they entered the temple of Sri Gopinatha, and Sri Jiva introduced Narottama to Sri Madhu Pandita. Narottama immediately touched the lotus feet of Sri Pandita. Sri Pandita affectionately held Narottama to his bosom and brought him to see Sri Radha Gopinatha. He gave the garland which had decorated the Deity to Narottama.

Sri Jiva Gosvami then took Srinivasa and Narottama to the house of Sri Bhugarbha Gosvami, a great scholar and inseparable associate of Sri Lokanatha Gosvami. He always spent his days in remembrance of Mahaprabhu. Sri Jiva Gosvami introduced him to Narottama, who at once touched the feet of Gosvami. Bhugarbha Gosvami embraced him very lovingly. After bowing to his feet, Sri Jiva returned to his house with Srinivasa and Narottama and brought them before Sri Sri Radha Damodara. Narottama was overwhelmed with love at the sight of the Deity. How can I describe Narottama’s state of mind upon seeing the tomb of Sri Rupa Gosvami? Tears streamed down his face as he rolled on the ground. Gradually, his body became still and there was no sign of heaving. Srinivasa quickly took him in his lap. Sri Jiva pacified him and took him to his cottage. Sri Jiva then received a message to go quickly to Govindaji Temple. Thus he, Srinivasa and Narottama went to the temple and observed the rajabhoga arati of Sri Govinda. After respecting mahaprasada they returned to Sri Jiva’s cottage. There they spent time discussing topics related to Krsna. Later they went to the temple of Sri Madanamohana and observed the uthvapana arati of the Deity. Sri Jiva then introduced Narottama to everyone there. Seeing Sri Madanamohana, Narottama became overwhelmed with love, forgetting himself he wept incessantly. The Gosvami priest lovingly gave him the garland which had decorated the Deity. Sri Jiva then took him to the tomb of Sanatana Gosvami. One mouth is incapable of describing the emotions of Narottama upon observing Sanatana’s tomb. With great affection Sri Jiva pacified Narottama and brought him to his cottage. There he put Narottama into the hands of his dear Srinivasa. With great happiness Srinivasa bowed to the feet of Sri Jiva and started for his cottage with Narottama, where they spent the entire night discussing topics related to Krsna. In the morning, they bathed in the Yamuna and worshipped the Lord. With joyful minds they went to see Sri Jiva Gosvami, who immediately sent them to the Radha Kunda.

After observing the beauty of the two kunda’s, they went to the place of Sri dasa Gosvami and Srinivasa cautiously introduced Narottama to him. Though Dasa Gosvami had been in a miserable state of mind due to separation from the Lord and His devotees, he suddenly became very happy. “Where is Narottama”? Saying this he opened his eyes. Narottama bowed to his lotus feet. Being affectionately moved, Dasa Gosvami showered his mercy upon Narottama. Narottama was then introduced to all the great scholars there. Sri Raghava Pandita, who had been living at Govardhana, was extremely happy to see Narottama. Srinivasa and Narottama finished their travels to all the sacred spots and then reported back to Sri Jiva.

Without delay Sri Jiva happily began educating Narottama. During his studies Narottama won the hearts of all with his sensitive and scholastic explanations. Who can understand the heart of Narottama? His service attitude towards Lokanatha Gosvami was beyond compare, and Lokanatha Gosvami was extremely pleased with his beloved disciple. One day, observing Narottama’s eagerness, Lokanatha fulfilled Narottama’s long cherished desire and initiated him into the chanting of the Mahamantra. Everyone in Vrndavana was greatly impressed by the depth of Narottama’s understanding of devotional scriptures. Thus, to everyone’s pleasure, Sri Jiva Gosvami conferred upon Narottama the title of `Sri Thakura Mahasaya.’ All the mahantas were filled with joy and Narottama’s fame rapidly spread throughout Vrajapura. The practice of manasa seva in Vrndavana was first started by Narottama (this episode has been described in Bhakti-ratnakara.)

Please listen attentively as I describe how Narottama again returned to Gauda. I, Narahari dasa continue the narration of Sri Narottama Vilasa.

THE THIRD VILASA

All glories to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Nityananda, Advaita Acarya and all the devotees. Please bestow your mercy upon me. All glories to the listeners, who are an ocean of mercy. Now listen attentively as I continue my narration.

After consulting with all the mahantas of Vraja, Sri Jiva Gosvami determined an auspicious date for sending all of the Gosvami’s manuscripts to Gauda. It had previously been predicted by the Lord Himself that these books would be distributed far and wide. Thus Sri Jiva handed over all the precious manuscripts to Srinivasa Acarya, who was responsible for carrying them to Gauda. In this regard Sri Thakura Mahasaya composed one famous sloka: “When shall I see the abode of mercy, Sri Caitanya Deva who has distributed his power in two ways; He invested Sri Rupa, and others, with the power to write devotional books wherein priceless treasures of spiritual knowledge shine like brilliant jewels. And He has empowered Srinivasa to circulate them. Thus I worship the lotus feet of Sri Caitanya Deva who has manifested these two powerful mediums to shower His mercy upon this world.”

Sri Jiva Gosvami’s knowledge and devotion was deeper than millions oceans. Although his outward expression was most stable, inwardly he was extremely emotional and greatly perturbed at the thought of separation from Narottama and Srinivasa. Nevertheless, he calmly helped Srinivasa to say good-bye to everyone and gave him his blessings to start for Gauda at an auspicious moment.

With great affection Lokanatha Gosvami handed over his dear disciple, Narottama, to the hands of Srinivasa. Again and again he instructed Narottama, “Always remember to serve the Deities and dedicate your life to spreading the sankirtana movement.” Narottama happily accepted these instructions as his life and soul, and Srinivasa accepted the charge of Narottama jubilantly. Putting Syamananda and Narottama under the care of Srinivasa, Sri Jiva said, “From now on, these boys are yours.” He ordered Syamananda , “First go to Gauda, then travel to Utkala via Sri Amvika Puri.” (This is elaborately described in Bhaktiratnakara). Thus taking the blessings of all the mahantas, they started their long journey to Gauda. The carts filled with the priceless treasure of books moved ahead and eleven armed guards from Vraja followed behind. With a disturbed mind, Sri Jiva Gosvami accompanied the party to Mathura. The residents of Mathura greeted them ecstatically and they rested there for the night. Their departure the following morning, however, was a pathetic scene, no one could bear to see them go.

After a long journey Srinivasa, Narottama and Syamananda finally reached Gaudamandala and headed through the woods in the direction of Vanavisnupura. In the midst of the forest they came upon a village were they decided to halt for the night. Generally they were extremely cautious about protecting the books at night. However, on this night, due the desire of the Lord, they all fell sound asleep.

Meanwhile, the local king, Vira Hamvira, had received a report that many carts filled with jewels, carried by a number of wealthy persons, had arrived in their village. Hearing this, the enthusiastic king at once sent a team of dacoits to rob them. The dacoits easily robbed the caskets and carried them to the king. Without even opening the caskets the king suddenly became overwhelmed with awe and bowed to the ground again and again. Bewildered, the king exclaimed, “Oh, what has happened to me. What kind of jewels are in these caskets?” Saying this the king began to weep inexplicably. In this way the goddess of devotion transcendentally tricked the king. Feeling uncertain about the robbery, the king secretly opened the caskets and found the books. Repentant, he cried out, “Alas, what have I done? I don’t know who the gentlemen are whom I have hurt. If I am fortunate enough to meet them, I shall certainly seek their refuge and return their books.” Sitting alone in a secluded place the king lamented in this way.

In the morning when Srinivasa and his party awoke they were horrified to find that the precious life-long works of the Gosvami’s had been stolen by dacoits. The miserable scene which then insued is to heart-breaking to describe. Throwing themselves on the ground they cried out loudly in utter despair. They were unable to pacify one another. A long time passed in heated lamentation, until Srinivasa calmed himself down and tried to pacify the others. “On our long journey we passed safely through many dangerous places. But here we accidentally fell asleep and everything has been easily stolen. There must be some hidden purpose behind this incident.” Sri Thakura Mahasaya also took heart and privately said, “This must be a divine arrangement in order that this country receive some special mercy.” At that time they suddenly heard an oracle in the sky, “Do not worry, the books will soon be recovered.”

Shortly thereafter, someone whispered to Srinivasa, “The king is the real culprit, go to Vanavisnupura.” Hearing this, Srinivasa first consoled his companions and sent a letter to Vrndavana. He requested Sri Thakura Mahasaya to go to Kheturi without hesitation, and told Syamananda, “Go immediately to Utkala via Sri Kheturi. I shall go to Vanavisnupura and fetch the books, then I will send you a letter to reassure you that the books have been recovered. Now don’t worry and don’t think about anything else.” Saying this he bade farewell to them. It was impossible for them to disobey the order of Sri Acarya, yet they could not conceal their grief when they were about to leave. Together Narottama and Syamananda traveled to Kheturi, but Narottama did not let Syamananda go to Utkala.

In Vanavisnupura Srinivasa bestowed his mercy upon King Vira Hamvira, who happily returned the books without hesitation. Later the king, along with his followers and family, took shelter under the lotus feet of Srinivasa and became great devotees. This incident is elaborately described in Bhakti-ratnakara. Relieved and happy, Sri Acarya Thakura sent word to Vrndavana assuring the devotees that the books had been recovered. He also sent a letter to relieve the minds of Thakura Mahasaya and Syamananda in Kheturi. Upon receiving the news they joyfully raised their hands, singing and dancing ecstatically. Sri Santosa Datta, the son of Sri Purusottama Datta, was also jubilant. Santosa was the son of Narottama’s uncle and was full of all good qualities. Krsnananda Datta had appointed him as the heir to the throne. He was a good and kind hearted king and gave profuse charity to the brahmanas, scholars and poor. Sri Thakura Mahasaya happily sent a reply to Srinivasa in Vanavisnupura.

Thereafter Syamananda took his leave. The parting of Narottama and Syamananda was a pathetic scene. Even the animals and birds cried upon hearing the loving exchange between the two dear friends. Sri Thakura Mahasaya selected an escort to accompany Syamananda to Utkala, and Syamananda began his journey with a heavy heart.

Syamananda traveled to Amvika via Navadvipa. There he was overwhelmed with ecstatic emotion upon observing the temple of Sri Gaura-Nitai. Seeing Syamananda crying helplessly, someone rushed to inform Sri Hrdaya Caitanya of Syamananda’s arrival, “Your Dukhi Krsnadasa is here. I saw him lying on the ground in front of the temple praying to the Lord with extreme humility. I was completely amazed by the boy’s expressions of love and devotion. I cannot describe how his eyes incessantly shed tears. Since he did not come to see you, I ran here immediately to inform you of his arrival.”

Hearing this, Thakura was jubilant and excitedly requested that the man immediately bring Syamananda to see him, “I am eagerly waiting for him”, he said. “I am very proud of his devotional service. After taking initiation from me, he lived here for a long time and captured Sri Nitai Caitanya with the bonds of his love. I affectionately sent him to Vrndavana, where he completed his devotional studies. During that time he wrote me regularly to inform me of his progress. Understanding his thirst for knowledge, I permitted him to carry on. In Vrndavana he was so happily engaged in the service of the Nikunja, that eventually his named was changed from Dukhi to Syamananda. Everyone in Vrndavana loves him dearly. He had already written to me that he would be coming here soon. By the desire of Gaura Nitai he will perform exalted service which will be acknowledged throughout the world. Mind you, he is my favorite disciple and I am anxious to see him after such a long time.”

At that moment Syamananda appeared on the spot and fell at the feet of his spiritual master. Sri Hrdaya Caitanya Thakura affectionately placed his feet on Syamananda’s head. When he tried to embrace his disciple, Syamananda shrank away and stood in a distant place. Nevertheless Thakura grabbed him and embraced him lovingly and then took him to the temple of Mahaprabhu.

There he dedicated Syamananda to the feet of Gaura-Nitai. Thakura then brought Syamananda to his house and gave him the remnants of his food to eat, which Syamananda relished happily. Thakura eagerly inquired about recent events, and Syamananda pleased his guru with an elaborate description of everything. Syamananda stayed with his spiritual master for a long time serving him wholeheartedly. However, one day Hrdaya Caitanya said, “Do not delay any longer, you must leave for Utkala at once. The Lord has many plans for you to execute there.” Saying this, he brought Syamananda before Gaura-Nitai and gave him the garland offered to the Deities. After bestowing his blessings upon Syamananda, Hrdaya Caitanya bade him farewell. Crying pathetically, Syamananda said goodbye to his spiritual master, who was also unable to hold back his tears.

I will not describe Syamananda’s journey to Utkala, but I shall mention that along the way Syamananda freely distributed his mercy and saved many fallen souls from the repetition of birth and death. In Utkala he accepted many disciples, of which Sri Rasikananda was one. Due to the powerful preaching of Syamananda and his disciples the whole country became purified. I have elaborately described these incidents in Bhakti-ratnakara.

When Syamananda finally arrived in Utkala he immediately sent a letter to Sri Thakura Mahasaya to inform him of his safe arrival. Thakura Mahasaya, who had been waiting anxiously to hear from Syamananda, was happy and relieved to receive his letter. He immediately sent the letter on to the devotees in Vanavisnupura, and wrote a reply to Syamananda.

Sri Thakura Mahasaya then left Kheturi and started for Navadvipa. Narottama remained in an ecstatic loving trance as he traveled, like a maddened elephant. A continuous shower of tears streamed down his face, wetting his chest. Everyone who saw him observed his expressions of divine love with astonishment. As he passed through various villages the residents became enchanted by his presence and followed along behind him. Once he set foot in a village, the inhabitants ran to greet him, swarming around him like bumblebees. And when he left the village, the inhabitants sank into the depths of sorrow.

Traveling in this way he eventually reached the boarder of Navadvipa. Observing the beautiful countryside he began to lament, “Oh, most merciful Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, why have you sent me into this world now? Being unable to witness your divine pastimes in Nadia I am lost in intense suffering.” Thinking in this way, he walked on very slowly, crying pitifully. But to his astonishment, when he entered Navadvipa proper, he found that each and every house was full of joy and happiness. In every corner the loud chanting of “Hari, Hari” resounded. From all directions men and women eagerly rushed to the house of Sri Caitanya. There the Lord and His associates danced ecstatically in sankirtana, thus Navadvipa was floating in the ocean of happiness.

For some time Narottama enjoyed the vision of this joyous scene, when suddenly, everything changed. Again the city of Nadia was sunk into the depths of despair. Narottama burst out crying, “Oh Lord, what have I seen?” Narottama sat thoughtfully for some time, then eventually asked a passerby where he could find the house of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. With his head hung down, tears streaming from his eyes, the man replied, “Look over there, that is the house of Prabhu, go in this way.” Seeing the Lord’s house Narottama began to cry also.

At that time Suklambara brahmacari happened to be passing by and his curiosity was aroused upon seeing Narottama. Narottama bowed to his feet, and Suklambara asked, “Who are you”? When Narottama stated his name, Suklambara immediately broke out in tears and warmly embraced Narottama with deep affection. With a choked voice he explained to Narottama, “When Gauracandra was absorbed in ecstatic trance in the village of Ramakeli, He called out your name lovingly. Who can understand the mystery of the Lord’s pastimes? At that time he predicted your arrival here. Oh my son, all the mahantas, including myself, have been eagerly waiting for you. Actually Prabhu’s disappearance is unbearable for us. Some of us have already disappeared from this world.”

He then introduced himself to Narottama and brought him to meet all the other remaining devotees of Gauranga. Narottama worshipped everyone’s feet, and they embraced him. Though they were merged in intense suffering due to separation from the Lord, they felt immediate relief and happiness upon seeing Narottama. They eagerly questioned Narottama about many things, and Narottama happily answered them all. Damodara Pandita and others did not want Narottama to leave them, thus Narottama stayed in Nadia a few more days in the houses of the favorite associates of Mahaprabhu. Narottama was so fortunate that in his dreams he was able to meet those devotees who he had not met there due to their demise.

After a few days passed the devotees reluctantly, and with heavy hearts, allowed Narottama to leave. They told him sweetly, “Prabhu has kept us alive only to see you. But, alas, we will not be able to see Srinivasa.” Saying this, their voices choked with emotion. With a perturbed mind, Narottama touched everyone’s feet and went to Gauracandra’s house for a final visit. There he found even the servants and maidservants of Prabhu on the verge of death, due to separation. Seeing Narottama, their misery doubled. Blessing Narottama they said, “Due to the wish of Prabhu, you will execute His plans and perform wonderful service.” Then they bade him farewell. Narottama cried loudly and fell on the ground in the courtyard of Gauranga. After a long time, he controlled himself and started for Santipura.

Narottama was charmed by the beauty of Santipura. He went to the house of Advaita Acarya and worshipped the feet of Sri Acyutananda, son of Advaita Prabhu. He was merciful to Narottama and introduced him to all the devotes. Later he ordered Narottama, “Go to Nilacala first and then come back to your place and begin to popularize kirtana.” Saying this he began to weep and his thin body trembled. Narottama again worshipped the feet of all the devotees and took his leave.

Arriving at Harinadi village he crossed the Ganges and entered Amvika. There he asked someone where he could find the house of Hrdaya Caitanya Pandita, and found out that he was not far away. Someone who had seen Narottama pass by, rushed ahead to Hrdaya Caitanya and informed him excitedly, “A beautiful young man who is filled with love for Gaura-Nitai is coming to see you.” Sri Hrdaya Caitanya immediately understood that it was non-other than his beloved Narottama. Filled with emotion, he ran to the door step to welcome his disciple. Narottama fell at the feet of his guru, who tearfully welcomed him, taking him in his lap. He then took Narottama to the temple of Gaura-Nitai for darsana. Seeing his beloved Lord’s before him, Narottama fell on the ground crying. Hrdaya Caitanya pacified him and gave him the Deities garland.

With great affection, Sri Hrdaya Caitanya kept Narottama with him for 2 to 4 days and then, after dedicating him to the feet of Gaura-Nitai, ordered him to go to Nilacala. All the great Bhagavatas, including Sri Hrdaya Caitanya, were deeply aggrieved to see him go.

Narottama traveled quickly, eager to reach Khardaha. He became so excited upon entering Khardaha proper, that he lost his usual reserve. Mahesa Pandita and others rushed to greet Narottama when they saw him approaching. “We were dying with separation from the Lord,” they said, “but now you have come to soothe our aching hearts, like a cooling oasis in the desert of misery. We have known about you for a long time and have already heard about your travels to Vrndavana, the stealing of the manuscripts, as well as your visit to Navadvipa. We are so happy to finally see you.” Saying this they each introduced themselves, and Narottama tearfully worshipped their feet. Thereafter they took Narottama to the house of Prabhu. When Sri Vasu and Jahnava were told of Narottama’s arrival, they eagerly requested that he be brought to the interior of the house immediately. Entering the room, Narottama felt himself extremely fortunate and worshipped the feet of the two Iswari’s, then bowed to the lotus feet of Sri Virabhadra. Upon seeing Narottama, Sri Vasu and Jahnava could not conceal their overwhelming love for him. “The title Mahasaya is rightly attributed to him,” they said. Out of affection, they kept Narottama with them for four days and all of the devotees of Khardaha came to meet him. Sri Vasu, Jahnava and Viracandra could not bear to leave him for a moment. The all-knowing Sri Jahnava Thakurani privately spoke to Narottama and ordered him to go to Nilacala soon. At the time of Narottama’s departure, Mahesa Pandita and others embraced Narottama again and again and also advised him to go to Nilacala. Narottama bowed to their feet and took his leave crying. The devotees accompanied him for some distance, then after pacifying themselves, as well as Narottama, they returned home.

He who attentively hears this narration of Narottama’s journey in Gauda will have his desires fulfilled. So listen attentively as I, Sri Narahari Dasa, narrate Narottama Vilasa.

THE FOURTH VILASA

All glories to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Nityananda Prabhu, Advaita Acarya, and all the devotees of the Lord. Please shower your mercy upon this poor soul. All glories to the all-merciful listeners. Now listen attentively as I narrate this episode of Narottama Vilasa.

As Sri Thakura Mahasaya began his journey to Nilacala his mind was filled with loving thoughts of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. With due reverence Narottama choose to take the same road which had formerly been traversed by Sri Caitanya Candra Himself. At night Narottama halted at the same villages which the Lord had chosen as His resting place, and also discussed topics of Krsna with the local people, just as Mahaprabhu had done previously. When Narottama happened to meet someone who had personally met Mahaprabhu, he could not check his emotions and cried uncontrollably. Everyone who met Narottama was extremely pleased and immediately began glorifying him, “Sri Krsna Caitanya is the most merciful and loving incarnation. Only one who is His great devotee is capable of displaying such divine attributes as we see in this handsome young man. Just see how gracefully walks, and how comforting it is to one’s eyes to simply glance upon his face.” Speaking in this way the people became enchanted by the presence of Narottama. In the morning when it was time for Narottama to resume his journey crowds of local people swarmed around him, following along behind him as he walked. Narottama was unable to disperse the crowd, but eventually, with sweet words, he bid them farewell and continued his journey, halting only in those places where Mahaprabhu had performed His divine pastimes.

Narottama became ecstatic upon reaching the place where Nityananda Prabhu had broken the sannyasa stick of Sri Caitanya. He listened intently as the local people described this incidence, then, after expressing his gratitude to those persons, he continued along his way.

An aged brahmana, who was a great Vaisnava scholar, happened to pass Narottama on the road. Observing Narottama’s devotional mood, suddenly something came to his mind. He slowly approached Narottama and asked mildly, “What is your name, my son? From where are you coming?”

Upon hearing Narottama’s reply the brahmana’s suspicion was confirmed. With tears of ecstacy rolling down his face the brahmana warmly embraced Narottama saying, “For so long I have heard about you and I was cherishing the hope of one day meeting you. Today providence has shown its mercy upon me. I have just come from Ksetra, where I received the mercy of those associates of Prabhu who are still alive in Nilacala, and now I have luckily found you here. With great pleasure I heard them describe your glories while I resided there. I heard that you were bringing books from Vrndavana to Gauda, but unfortunately they were stolen along the way. I also heard that you would soon be coming to Ksetra and everyone was eagerly waiting for you. Gopinatha Acarya and Kasi Misra explained that Mahaprabhu had called for you when He visited the village of Ramakeli. At that time Nityananda and other devotees were very happy and since then they have all been eagerly waiting for you. Today, I have received the good fortune to meet you personally, but now you must not delay. Go as quickly as possible to Ksetra and I shall meet you there later.”

At that time the brahmana’s son arrived there. He introduced his son to Narottama and ordered him to accompany Narottama to Ksetra. The brahmana then happily bade them farewell. Narottama took the dust of the feet of the brahmana to his head and started his journey with the son of the brahmana.

Upon reaching Ksetra, Narottama and his companion observed the beauty of Lake Narendra. Remembering the Lord’s pastimes sporting within the water there, Narottama was unable to hold back his tears. He quickly took his bath and hurried off towards the Lion Gate.

At that time Sri Gopinatha Acarya and other devotees where also walking towards the Simhadvara. While walking Sri Sikhi Mahiti said to Mangaraja, “I can’t understand why my mind is leaping with joy.” And Kanai Khuntia said, “I don’t understand what is about to happen but it is evident from the auspicious omens that something wonderful is awaiting us.” Gopinatha Acarya told Vaninatha, “I think we are going to meet Narottama here soon.”

As they were speaking in this way the brahmana’s son approached them and informed them of Narottama’s arrival. Who can describe the devotees jubilation upon receiving this news? The brahmana boy then rushed back to Narottama and helped him to identify the devotees who were approaching from a distance. Seeing all the devotees Narottama was overwhelmed with emotion. He immediately fell on the ground bowing to their feet. With tears streaming from his eyes, Gopinatha Acarya ran to greet Narottama and embraced him affectionately.

Later, when Narottama had calmed down, they took him to the temple to see Sri Jagannatha Deva. After entering through the Lion Gate, Narottama first bowed before Sri Nrsimha Deva. Upon seeing Sri Jagannatha along with Sri Balarama and Sri Subhadra sitting on Their thrones, Narottama was filled with ecstatic emotions. Sri Padmalocana, Sri Jagannatha Deva, benevolently bestowed His mercy upon Narottama. The priest of Sri Jagannatha Deva, understanding the mind of his Lord, brought Sri Jagannatha Deva’s garland and offered it to Narottama.

Narottama was unable to control his emotions and wept incessantly. After pacifying Narottama, Gopinatha Acarya took him to his house. There he instructed one experienced person to accompany Narottama to the samadhis of the departed associates of the Lord. Thereafter he informed everyone of Narottama’s arrival in Nilacala and brought varieties of mahaprasada from the temple for him.

Meanwhile, Narottama came across some persons who were talking to one another in this way: “Alas, Nilacala has now become the abode of misery. All the associates of Sri Gauracandra are gradually departing from this world. Sri Gopinatha Acarya and other great Vaisnavas have become lean and weak.” Someone else said: “I recently visited Gopinatha and I cannot describe what I saw there. Unable to bear the misery of separation from Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Sri Mamu Gosvami is practically lifeless. He is lying emaciated in a lonely corner. I am afraid that he will die soon.” Overhearing this conversation, Narottama’s heart ached with misery.

Narottama then traveled on to have darsana of Tota Gopinatha. The vision of the beautiful Lord with His shining black complexion seated upon His throne could easily defeat the pride of Cupid. Narottama, deeply moved, laid prostrate before the Deity crying. Seeing him the priest offered him the Lord’s garland. Narottama and his escort then went to see the seat of Sri Pandita Gosvami. He fell on the ground before the seat, and, again the priest gave him a garland. Crying uncontrollably Narottama lamented, “Oh Gadadhara Pandita Gosvami Prabhu, how unfortunate I am for not having the opportunity to see you.” Narottama’s pathetic crying could melt even wood or stone.

Sri Mamu Gosvami, who had been lying in a half-unconscious state crying, suddenly got up and heaving a heavy sigh asked, “Who is crying?” They replied, “Narottama has arrived from Gauda.” Upon hearing the name of Narottama, he broke out in floods of tears and embraced Narottama emotionally. Unable to control himself, Mamu Gosvami fell on the ground, and outcry of anguish arose from the devotees in the temple of Gopinatha. By the grace of the Lord, Mamu Gosvami gradually calmed down and everyone was pacified. Though Gosvami’s life was in a precarious state, he was exceedingly happy to see Narottama and asked about his well being. Hearing Narottama’s sweet words, Mamu Gosvami became extremely moved by Narottama’s sweet words and thus dedicated Narottama to the feet of Gopinatha and ordered him, “Go to see the tomb of Haridasa Thakura, Gopinatha Acarya is waiting for you there.”

Without delay, Narottama and his escort went to the tomb of Haridasa Thakura on the seashore. He was so shaken to see the tomb that no one could pacify him. Eventually, the Vaisnava in charge of the samadhi, managed to slightly console Narottama and sent him to Gopinatha Acarya’s house. Gopinatha Acarya, a very warm hearted person, with tender words encouraged Narottama to sit peacefully by his side and told him, “Everyone here is greatly eager to see you. Take some rest now and afterwards you can meet all the devotees.”

How can I describe the state of mind of the residents of Nilacala? Due to the Lord’s disappearance, they had given up eating, drinking and sleeping. They lived only in hopes of seeing Narottama. Thus when they saw Narottama approaching their houses, they eagerly rushed out to greet him. As Narottama’s escort introduced each devotee, they affectionately embraced him and Narottama and touched their feet. Thereafter they went to the house of Gopinatha who lovingly offered them seats. Everyone had questions to ask Narottama and he answered them all, reporting everything in detail. Thereafter Gopinatha Acarya requested the devotees to relish mahaprasada along with Narottama. After washing their mouths, they returned to their houses and requested Narottama to take some rest.

When it was time to go to the temple, Narottama got up and took his bath and Kanai Khuntia took him to the temple of Jagannatha. Narottama remained there throughout the afternoon, observing all three arati ceremonies {sandhya (evening) and sayana (at bed time)} one after another. He and Kanai Khuntia then returned to the house of Gopinatha Acarya. No one wanted to give up Narottama’s association, but on the order of Acarya, they took their leave. Gopinatha, whose affection for Narottama was beyond compare, then requested him to take rest. After Narottama went to bed, Gopinatha also entered into his room.

However, Narottama’s mind was too agitated and he was unable to sleep. Yet after some time, by the wish of the Lord, he finally fell asleep and in his dream he saw his worshipful Lord and all the devotees dancing in front of the chariot of Sri Jagannatha. He saw Sri Krsna Caitanya, Nitai, Sri Advaita, Gadadhara Pandita Gosvami, Srivasa Pandita, Murari Gupta, Govinda, Haridasa, Kasi Misra, Ramananda Raya, Vasudeva Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya, Kasisvara, Jagadisa Pandita, Vasu Ghosh, Mukunda, Madhava, Vakresvara, Govinda dasa, Mahesa Pandita, Damodara, Svarupa Gosvami, Suklambara brahmacari, Dasa Gadadhara, Yadu, Sri Kansari, Sridhara, Suryadasa, Ramai Sundara, Dhananjaya, Ramananda Vasu Ghosh, Sankara, Sanjaya, Lokanatha, Bhugarbha, Sri Rupa, Sanatana, Sri Jiva, Gopala Bhatta, Krsnadasa brahmacari, Pandita Raghava, Paramananda Bhattacarya, Acarya Madhava, Raghunatha, Raghunatha Bhatta, Sri Tapana Misra, King Sri Prataparudra, Acarya Gopinatha, Sri Sikhi Mahiti etc.

He saw all Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s devotees from Gauda, Vraja, Utkala and South India performing pastimes with the Lord. Who could describe the extraordinary captivating beauty of this scene? Sri Gauracandra danced in the middle surrounded by all the devotees. Inspired by the Lord’s presence, the devotees performed ecstatic sankirtana, joyfully dancing, singing and playing musical instruments. The atmosphere was so divine that even the demigods came down from their heavenly abodes to enjoy the Lord’s pastimes. As the sound of sankirtana penetrated the air, the entire three worlds began to float on waves of happiness. Huge crowds of people eagerly pushed forward to get a glimpse of the Lord’s beautiful dancing, as the demigods showered flowers on Mahaprabhu’s head. Even the lame, the blind and the deaf suddenly forgot their handicaps and dashed forward to join in the sankirtana. Even stone hearted persons wept in joy upon hearing the melodious chanting. Even the animals and birds became restless.

Standing in the corner Narottama joyfully watched this wonderful scene with tears rolling down his cheeks. Seeing Narottama, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, in trance, grabbed hold of Narottama’s hands and said mildly, “You must manifest a new type of kirtana which will have the potency to mesmerize the people. Through your songs and music you should explain My pastimes and mission. Don’t worry about anything, all your desires will be fulfilled. Now go to Gauda as soon as possible and preach the glories of devotional service. Those who are fortunate enough to take shelter in you, will receive the most precious wealth of love of God. Soon you will link up with Ramacandra, son of Ciranjiva Sena. What else can I say? I shall always take care of you.” All the devotees of the Lord were extremely happy to see Lord Caitanya shower His mercy so profusely upon Narottama. Nityananda, Advaita, Gadadhara, Haridasa, Sarvabhauma, Ramananda Raya, Srivasa, Vakresvara and others embraced Narottama tightly. Narottama fell on the ground in a pool of tears. Mahaprabhu’s devotees consoled Narottama and advised him to go to Gauda.

Suddenly Narottama awoke with a heavy heart. Somehow he managed to calm himself and hastily finished his morning duties. Afterwards, Gopinatha Acarya sent him with Sikhi Mahiti to Sri Jagannatha Deva’s arati. As soon as Narottama began to think about going to Gauda, Lord Jagannatha’s garland fell from His neck and the priest gave Narottama that garland. Narottama considered this the Lord’s indication to him to leave at once for Gauda. After bowing to the feet of Jagannatha, he went to the house of Gopinatha Acarya and before Narottama could say anything, Gopinatha said, “The Lord has ordered you to go to Gauda.” Thus after consulting with the other mahantas of Sriksetra a date was fixed for Narottama’s departure.

When Narottama was about to leave the devotees held his hands and said happily, “We eagerly waited to meet you for so long, now are dreams have finally been fulfilled. We are also hoping to have so good fortune to meet Srinivasa Acarya, and perhaps someday we will have the darsana of the exalted Dukhi Krsnadasa, who is now called Syamananda.” Saying this they began to weep. Hearing their loving words Narottama was also moved to tears. After assigning an escort to accompany Narottama, they reluctantly bade farewell. Narottama began his journey along with his escort who carefully carried a basket of mahaprasada.

With a heavy heart and tear filled eyes, Narottama traveled until reaching Narendra lake. There he met the brahmana and his son whom he had met upon arriving at Ksetra. Narottama took the dust of his feet to his head and the brahmana embraced him saying, “Oh my dear Narottama, you are more dear to me than my life. I knew that you would be passing by today on your way to Gauda so I finished my duties as quickly as possible. Now, by the mercy of Jagannatha Deva, you have come. If I would have missed you I would have burned in the fire of my own sorrow.” He did not want to let Narottama go but he had to. He blessed Narottama and walking along with him begging again and again to come with him, but Narottama would not consent.

Narottama then started walking swiftly. He took rest for two days at Yajapura and then went on to Nrsimhapura. Someone who spotted him rushed ahead and informed Syamananda that Sri Thakura Mahasaya was coming from Ksetra. Syamananda was overwhelmed with ecstasy. Hurriedly, he and his men rushed to greet Sri Thakura Mahasaya. Seeing each other, they were both overcome with emotion and wept and bowed to each of continuously. Narottama held Syamananda tightly to his bosom and did not want to be separated.

Those who observed their meeting were amazed. Someone said, “Oh, how incredible, I have never seen anything so wonderful in my life.” Another person commented, “Oh, how lucky I am to see Sri Thakura Mahasaya for whom I was waiting for such a long time.” Someone else said, “Will we be so fortunate as to see Acarya Thakura once in our life?” Another person answered, “Certainly Srinivasa Acarya will bestow his mercy upon us.” Even the villagers came running to see Sri Thakura Mahasaya. Although Syamananda arranged a solitary house for Sri Thakura Mahasaya, still the people came to see Narottama in his house. Those persons who had the extraordinary good fortune to receive Thakura Mahasaya and Syamananda’s association and mercy were fortunate beyond compare. The entire country became blessed by contact with Sri Syamananda (Narottama?).

Sri Thakura Mahasaya happily bathed and performed his other duties. Afterwards he sat down with Syamananda, who slowly informed Narottama, “A few days ago Acarya Thakura left Vanavisnupura for Yajigrama. Yesterday afternoon I received this letter. Please look at it.” Narottama cried joyfully and happily read the letter with the utmost care. Syamananda then explained, “He sent another letter along with mahaprasada from Sri Amvika.” Again Narottama’s heart surged with happiness and he praised Syamananda for his good fortune. Touching the mahaprasada to his head, he ate some of it and became mad with joy. Sri Thakura Mahasaya ordered his men, “Bring the mahaprasada of Sri Jagannatha and gave some of it to Syamananda.” Narottama then carefully explained to Syamananda, “The associates of Lord Caitanya who are still alive in Nilacala are now suffering greatly due to the miserable fire of separation. I cannot describe their condition. Only due to the Lord’s desire they are still alive. They are simply waiting to see you. So, please do not make delay, start for Nilacala at once. After touching the feet of the devotees there, go to Utkala and benedict the people there by distributing the sublime treasure of pure devotional service. After some time I will send you a letter, requesting you and your men to go to Kheturi.”

Syamananda and Narottama stayed together a few more days, meanwhile the entire village came to know of Syamananda and Narottama’s eminent departure. Who could describe the sadness at the time of their separation? All of Syamananda’s disciples cried miserably, especially Rasika Murari could not stop crying. Sri Thakura Mahasaya affectionately embraced him and was extremely loving and merciful to all those who had taken shelter at the feet of Syamananda. Thakura Mahasaya blessed all of them and then started for Gauda. At this point Syamananda helplessly broke out in tears and no one could pacify him. Thereafter, with a heavy heart, Syamananda began his journey to Nilacala. I have described Syamananda’s journey to Nilacala in Bhakti-ratnakara.

Please listen attentively as I, Narahari, narrate Narottama Vilasa.

THE FIFTH VILASA

All glories to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Nityananda, Advaita and all the devotees. Please bestow your mercy upon this poor soul. All glories to the merciful listeners. Now listen attentively as I continue my narration.

When Narottama arrived at the famous village of Srikhanda in Gauda, someone spotted him approaching the house of Sarkara Thakura and rushed ahead to announce his arrival: “A very attractive man with a magnificent gait is coming this way, along with four other persons. Most likely he is coming from Nilacala.” Thakura immediately understood that it was none other than Narottama. Seeing Narottama in the distance, Sri Raghunandana rushed to greet him. When the local people informed Narottama about Raghunandana, he happily fell on the ground offering obeisances as Raghunandana approached him running. Raghunandana immediately embraced Narottama. Speechless with emotion he cried uncontrollably. Gradually he managed to calm himself and quickly took Narottama to his house. There Narottama saw Sri Sarkara Thakura and fell at his feet. Though Sarkara Thakura was sunk in the ocean of sorrow due to separation from the Lord, when he saw Narottama he was overwhelmed with joy. He took Narottama in his lap and tearfully told him, “I am so happy to see you. In Mahaprabhu’s absence, He will distribute love of God through you. Many fallen souls will take shelter in you, and you will spread the Lord’s ecstatic message by manifesting a new type of kirtana. In this way all your desires will be fulfilled by the mercy of Lord Caitanya. Do not worry about anything. You should go to Kheturi via Yajigrama, as Srinivasa Acarya recently returned from Vanavisnupura and is eagerly waiting for you there. He is constantly thinking about you. Yesterday he came here but returned to his house on the same day.” After that he asked Narottama about Sri Ksetra and Narottama vividly reported everything, which filled Sarkara Thakura with ecstatic emotions. Checking his sentiments, Thakura ordered Sri Raghunandana to take Narottama to the courtyard of Gauranga.

Upon seeing the Deity of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Narottama could not control himself and fell on the ground in a pool of tears. The priest tried to console him by offering him the garland from the Deity. Having heard of Narottama’s arrival, the inhabitants of Srikhanda eagerly gathered in the courtyard of Gauranga to greet and praise Narottama. Narottama then took some mahaprasada to the house of Sri Sarkara and asked Raghunandana to offer it to Sarkara Thakura, who became ecstatic upon eating the prasada of Sri Jagannatha. He then ordered Sri Raghunandana to distribute the mahaprasada to all the devotees. Thus everyone relished the prasada, while absorbed in memories of Sri Gauranga and His pastimes in Nilacala. Thereafter they sat together and enjoyed discussions about Sri Krsna. In this way the devotees happily treasured Narottama’s association and could not even think of being separated from him.

In the morning, Narottama finished his daily duties, took darsana of Sri Gauranga, and went to meet Sarkara Thakura. With deep feeling and gravity Thakura looked at Narottama and said, “How peaceful it is to look upon your face. I shall not have this opportunity a second time.” Narottama could not bear this sad thought and fell at Thakura’s feet crying. Sri Thakura embraced Narottama and bade him farewell. Narottama bowed to the feet of all the inhabitants of Srikhanda and began his journey. Sri Raghunandana, not wanting to leave Narottama’s company, walked along with him for some distance. He then appointed one man to accompany Narottama to Yajigrama and tearfully said goodbye.

Upon reaching Yajigrama, the escort pointed to one house and said, “That is the house of Srinivasa Acarya where he teaches his students.”

In the meantime someone reported to Acarya that Sri Thakura Mahasaya had come from Sri Ksetra. Srinivasa Acarya at once got up and hurried towards the door, when Narottama suddenly entered the house. Seeing each other, their hearts leapt with joy and both of them burst into tears. Narottama fell at Acarya’s feet and Acarya lovingly embraced him. Who can understand the nature of such exalted personalities? Although physically two different persons, they were of suchlike minds that they felt as if one. When they had calmed down they sat and conversed together intently.

In the meantime, a learned brahmana, who had come from Ksetra in hopes of studying the books of the Gosvamis, arrived there. He politely submitted himself before Srinivasa, who inquired from him about events in Sri Nilacala. Heaving a heavy sigh, the brahmana said tearfully, “Nilacala has lost her jewels. Since the day that Thakura Mahasaya left a chain of miserable events has come to reign there. Practically all the associates of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu began to disappear from this world. Syamananda faced terrible miseries when he arrived there. Only due to the will of the Lord, was he able to maintain his life. Those who are still alive, consoled Syamananda and bade him farewell. Then he returned to his own place. I witnessed all of this with my own eyes and was unable to stay there any longer, so I started walking and didn’t not stop until I reached Gauda.” Saying this the brahmana began to cry, calling out the names of the departed devotees of Ksetra. Acarya Thakura, Narottama, Vyasa Cakravarti and Krsnavallabha all cried along with him. Considerable time passed before Acarya Thakura was able to console himself and the brahmana. He then arranged accommodations for the brahmana and from that day began teaching him. Who knows what Acarya Thakura and Narottama discussed privately amongst themselves?

The next day morning, Thakura Mahasaya took his leave of Acarya Thakura. Acarya Thakura stood stone-like staring at the path which Narottama traversed, bathing himself with his own tears. Vyasa Cakravarti and a few other devotees accompanied Narottama for some distance, until Narottama very lovingly forbade them go any further.

Narottama eventually arrived at Kantakanagara, the place of Sri Kesava Bharati. Who can describe Narottama’s condition upon seeing Dasa Gadadhara’s Deity of Sri Gauranga there? Sri Yadunandana Cakravarti, the disciple of Sri Gadadhara and a scholar of all scriptures, became excited when he saw Narottama and hurried out of the temple to greet him. He offered the Lord’s garland to Narottama and embraced him warmly with tears in his eyes. In a chocked voice he told Narottama, “It is so wonderful that you have finally come here. Prabhu Gadadhara has been impatiently waiting for you for a long time. Again and again he has asked me, `Go see whether Narottama has come yet.’ Oh my dear brother, what can I say? The ocean of misery is extremely turbulent here. After the demise of Sri Visnupriya Iswari, my Prabhu returned from Navadvipa and has been spending his days alone here. Lost in an ocean of misery, he is unable to eat and has become completely emaciated.”

Saying this he took Narottama to Dasa Gadadhara who was sitting alone with dust all over his body. His closed eyes continuously shed tears. Merged in thoughts of Sri Gaurahari, he sighed heavily and repeatedly uttered, “Hari, Hari.” At an opportune moment, Yadunandana said quietly, “Narottama has come from Ksetra.”

As soon as the name of Narottama entered his ears, Sri Gadadhara opened his eyes crying loudly. With outstretched hands, he embraced Narottama soaking him with his tears. Narottama touched the feet of Gadadhara and reported everything to him about his recent travels. Blessing Narottama, Sri Gadadhara said, “All your desires will be fulfilled. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu will definitely dance along with your kirtana. Now you should go to Kheturi and distribute love of God to the people there.”

Sri Yadunandana then took Narottama to another dwelling place and said, “See, this is the place where Sri Kesava Bharati lived. And here is the place where Prabhu cut His hair and took sannyasa from Bharati.” At this point they broke into tears and Narottama fell unconscious on the ground. A long time passed before they were able to enter into the temple and observe the beautiful Deity of Gauracandra. Narottama stayed there for the day and the following morning, thinking of the lotus feet of Sri Nityananda Balarama, he started for Ekacakra village in Radha.

At the entrance of the village Nityananda, in the guise of an old brahmana, asked Narottama, “What is your name and from where are you coming? Where will you go and for what purpose?” Narottama replied, “I am Narottama, coming from Ksetra. I have come to the birth place of Nityananda, whose parents were Padmavati and Hadai Pandita, because I want to see the sacred places where Sri Nityananda Prabhu performed his pastimes. I live on the other side of the Padmavati in Sri Kheturi and from here I shall return there.” Hearing Narottama’s sweet words, the old brahmana smiled and without disclosing anything said, “I know everything. Come along with me, I shall show you all.” The brahmana guided Narottama to a particular spot and said, “See, this is the place where Nityananda and His friends enjoyed grazing cattle like the Gopas. Nityananda roamed about in this area holding His club and plow. And this is the place where He performed Ramalila. As Balarama performed His pastimes in Svetadvipa, similarly Nityananda performed His pastimes here. Now let me show you the house of Hadai Pandita where Nityananda Raya took birth. Here is the spot where He held a snake. See, over here, this is where His Gurukarana ceremony was performed. Now look at this temple of Visnu where He used to worship the Lord. This is where that sannyasi came and ate and afterwards begged Nityananda from his father. This is the road by which the sannyasi and Nityananda left, followed by all the inhabitants of this village. In this spot Nityananda’s mother loudly lamented for her son, and over here Hadai Pandita rolled on the ground in anguish at losing his son. Here Padmavati devi laid unconscious and Hadai Pandita consoled her. Oh Narottama, mind these places which I am showing you are beyond the grasp of even the demigods. In this Ekacakra village, Nityananda Raya still performs His pastimes and only the fortunate can see them.” Saying this much, the brahmana vanished. The sudden disappearance of the old brahmana bewildered Narottama. “What is this,” he thought, “one moment he was here and then he vanished like a bolt from the blue.” Narottama became extremely restless and thought, “If I cannot see him anymore, I shall commit suicide by entering into fire.” Saying this Narottama began to lament pitifully. Nityananda Haladhara who is an ocean of mercy again appeared before Narottama in the guise of the old brahmana. This time, the brahmana suddenly turned into Balarama, carrying his club and plow, wearing a topknot on his head and dressed in beautiful garments. Then suddenly Balarama turned into Nityananda. Smilingly he said to Narottama, “You are my favorite, I have no intention to deceive you. Very soon all your desires will be fulfilled. But don’t disclose to anyone that you have seen Me here.” Saying this He disappeared. Narottama stood transfixed like a statue, unable to move or speak. He stayed that day at Ekacakra and the following morning, while glorifying Nityananda Prabhu, King of Ekacakra, the son of Rohini and the life of the most fallen souls, Narottama began his journey. Crossing over the Padmavati river he headed towards Kheturi.

Listen attentively as I, Narahari, narrated this Narottama Vilasa.

THE SIXTH VILASA

All glories to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Nityananda Prabhu, Advaita Acarya and all the devotees. Please bestow your benedictions upon this fallen soul. All glories to the merciful listeners. Now hear attentively as I continue this narration.

At an auspicious time, Narottama crossed the Padmavati and entered Sri Kheturi. People from every corner of the village happily flocked to see him. Sri Santosa Datta and others greeted Sri Thakura Mahasaya and arranged accommodations for him in a solitary house. Nevertheless, the house was packed until the evening with enthusiastic villagers eager for his darsana.

In the evening when Narottama was finally alone, he began to think deeply about his devotional service to Sri Krsna. Eventually, by the Lord’s arrangement, he finally fell asleep late in the evening. In a dream the son of Saci told him, “Oh Narottama, in the hope of your coming here, I hid Myself in the form of a metal Deity in the house of an influential landlord. Everyone knows him because he is a rich man with many rice-go-downs, but no one will approach these go-downs because they are full of poisonous snakes. In one of the bigger go-downs I have concealed Myself. Quickly go and open the door of that go-down and bring Me to your house.” He then advised Narottama to have more Deities made and then vanished after embracing him.

Narottama excitedly woke to find that it was still dark. He spent the rest of the night performing sankirtana and in the morning quickly completed his daily duties. He then asked various persons if they knew of a rich man who had many rice go-downs which were infested with snakes. Everyone knew the man, and Narottama requested them to take him there. Thus Narottama, along with a few others, went to the rich man’s house, who was greatly surprised and happy to receive them. Sri Thakura Mahasaya immediately proceeded straight towards the rice go-down. The rich man was horrified, falling at Narottama’s feet he begged with folded hands, “Everyone knows that these go-downs are infested with snakes. Many snake tamers have tried to clear them out but their attempts were in vain. Long ago I gave up hope of getting rid of the snakes and, although I lost considerable money, I was forced to close the buildings down. I could not possibly allow you to go inside. Please tell me, what I can do for you?”

Thakura Mahasaya simply laughed and said, “Don’t be nervous, I shall clear it out now. I have very important business to attend to within your go-down. Afterwards you will be relieved and happy to see what I will bring out from inside.” Saying this, Thakura Mahasaya undauntedly walked towards the go-down, as the spectators trembled in fear. But when the snakes saw Thakura Mahasaya, they immediately left the go-down and went away. In a trance of love, Narottama opened the door and found Navadvipa Candra with His consort. Their bodies were fully decorated with ornaments and Their brilliant beauty was beyond compare. When Narottama picked Them up and lovingly clasped Them to his heart, he was suddenly jolted as if struck by a bolt of lightning.

Everyone was spellbound to see the Deities and began shouting with joy. Someone remarked, “It is not possible for an ordinary human being to do such a thing.” Someone else said, “Who can understand him? Because of his presence our village has become blessed.” Another person commented, “If we are fortunate enough, perhaps we can receive his blessings.” All of them danced happily, calling out the name of Narottama.

As Narottama carried the Deities, a huge crowd followed along behind him. Upon reaching his house, he placed Sri Gauranga and His consort on a beautiful celestial seat. With unblinking eyes he stared at the Lord crying incessantly. Suddenly a thought came to his mind and began spontaneously singing a beautiful kirtana about the glories of Gauracandra which he had written but had not yet been heard by others. Narottama sang and danced gracefully, putting the Gandharvas to shame. Even the Yavanas and the wicked souls became mad and sang the glories of Gauranga’s pastimes. The sound of kirtana covered the entire world and the demigods showered flowers from the heavens. Gandharvas and Kinnaras remarked with amazement, “Who is that extraordinary person who has suddenly manifested this most sublime and beautiful kirtana? Even we are not familiar with this type of singing. It appears that the dance, music and instruments have all become personified by his singing. Some of the devotees of Caitanya have this type of extraordinary power. All the devotees of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu are worshipable by even the demigods and goddesses.” Saying this, they accepting the guise of human beings, came before Narottama and fell at his feet. Thus from that very special day the super-excellent kirtana of Sri Narottama dasa Thakura was inaugurated. On that same day Balarama Vipra and others happily took initiation from Sri Thakura.

With a satisfied heart, Sri Thakura Mahasaya began to serve Gauracandra and Laksmi Visnupriya. He appointed Balarama Vipra and others to take charge of the Deities’ service. As ordered in a dream, he also installed five more Deities.

After this he began to feel anxious about not having heard from Srinivasa Acarya for so long. He wanted to find out some news, but thought, “Without his permission, how can I send anyone to see him? Yet no one has come from Yajigrama in such a long time. Now, I am at a loss as to what to do.” Just as he was thinking in this way a man suddenly arrived from Yajigrama. With great relief Thakura Mahasaya eagerly inquired about events there. The devotee replied, “Everything is fine there, but Acarya Thakura is always thinking of you and missing your association. He regularly visits Sri Khanda and Kantakanagara, and has also gone to Navadvipa. One day when he was in Khanda, Sri Sarkara Thakura spoke with him and again requested that he marry. This time he could not disobey Thakura. Thus he married and settled at Yajigrama, where many scholars and learned persons regularly visit. Now Ramacandra, a learned son of Sri Ciranjiva Sena of Khanda, has become the disciple of Acarya, and many others have also accepted initiation from him.

He has also successfully distributed all of the books of the Gosvamis. He sent a message to Sri Vrndavana, and one man brought a reply along with more books written by Sri Jiva Gosvami. Acarya has already distributed these new books everywhere.

Recently Srinivasa received a letter from Navadvipa, carrying devastating news. Many of the Lord’s associates from Santipura and the surrounding areas, who were suffering intensely in the fire of separation, have now left this world. Hearing about the demise of Sri Sarkara Thakura and Sri Dasa Gadadhara, Srinivasa Acarya sank deep in the ocean of despair. I cannot describe his state of mind. Sometimes we were afraid of his life. One day being unable to bear the pain of separation, he left for Vrndavana without telling anyone.

The Gosvamis were overjoyed to have Srinivasa’s company. They happily sat him down and inquired about his well-being and listened intently to the full account of carrying the manuscripts to Gauda. In this way they happily spent four or five days together.

Around that time, Sri Ramacandra Sena came there to meet Srinivasa Acarya. When the Gosvamis were informed of Ramacandra’s scholarly capabilities, they conferred upon him the title of “Kaviraja.” The Gosvamis eagerly listened as Ramacandra gave a full account of Srinivasa Acarya’s marriage.

Thereafter Sri Jiva Gosvami and the others gladly handed over more books to Srinivasa Acarya, appointed four Vrajavasis to accompany him, and bade him farewell. Sri Gopala Bhatta, Lokanatha, and everyone there was extremely sad to see him leave. Srinivasa quickly returned to Gauda and then went to Visnupura to relieve the king. I heard that he would be coming soon to Yajigrama, so I immediately came here to inform you.”

During the course of this conversation, two messengers suddenly arrived with another letter for Narottama from Sri Acarya and Narottama happily read aloud, “I left my house, along with my followers, and went to Kancanagaria where I initiated two devotees, who are the bearers of this letter. These two brothers, Sridasa and Gokulananda, are the sons of Dvija Haridasa, a prominent follower of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Being ordered by their father, they accepted initiation from Me. Yesterday I left Kancanagaria and started for Vudhuri.”

Reading this, Narottama exclaimed, “Oh what a wonderful morning for me,” and happily escorted the two messengers to the temple of Sri Gaura. There he introduced them to Balarama Pujari, who gladly brought them mahaprasada.

Thakura Mahasaya then went to inspect whether all the preparations for the forthcoming festival were ready or not. He was happy to find that all the go-downs were full of commodities. He then engaged various persons to specific assignments for further preparations. The next morning he left, along with Devidasa, Gokula and Gauranga and started for Vudhuri.

When Narottama reached Vudhuri someone rushed ahead and announced his arrival to Sri Acarya, who happily hurried out of the house and found Narottama standing there. Narottama fell at his feet, and Sri Acarya Thakura embraced him warmly. He then introduced Narottama to Ramacandra and the other devotees.

Sitting in a quiet place they discussed many topics; Srinivasa explained how he had met Ramacandra and initiated him, how his marriage had occurred, how Ramacandra received the title “Kaviraja,” his journey from Yajigrama to Vudhuri and how he conferred the title of “Kaviraja” upon Govinda. He then inquired about Narottama’s well being, and Narottama gradually explained how Sri Santosa Raya and others had became his disciples, how he rescued the Deity of Sri Gaurahari and arranged to have five more Deities carved and how he was making preparations for the forthcoming great festival. Narottama said, “As soon as I received your letter, I decided to hold the festival on the full-moon day of Phalguna.” Thereafter they sat together and compiled a list of devotees to invite to the festival and immediately sent out the invitation letter to all the devotees of Sri Gaurangamandala. Narottama also wrote a letter inviting Syamananda from Utkala. Sri Acarya and Narottama then sat together discussing privately. Later, Sri Acarya put Ramacandra under the care of Narottama.

Within a few days, news of Sri Acarya, Narottama and Ramacandra spread like wildfire. In every corner people were speaking about them: “They have mercifully appeared in this world to save the fallen souls from this hellish material existence.” Another person said, “Although three separate persons, they are so deeply united that they appear to be one.”

After four days had passed Sri Acarya permitted Narottama to return to Kheturi and instructed Ramacandra and others to accompany him. Upon arriving in Kheturi they immediately went for darsana of Sri Gauranga. There they happily met the disciples of Thakura Mahasaya, who were all abodes of transcendental qualities. Thereafter they inquired about the preparations for the festival and were pleased to find an enormous collection of the necessary commodities. Sri Thakura Mahasaya arranged separate private houses for Ramacandra and the others, where they all waited anxiously for the arrival of Sri Acarya.

Shortly thereafter, when Sri Acarya Thakura, along with Govinda and other devotees, arrived in Kheturi, a wonderful scene ensued as all the Vaisnavas ran out to greet them. They happily escorted Sri Acarya to a beautiful house and then took him for darsana of Sri Gauranga. Upon seeing the Deity along with His consort, Laksmi-Visnupriya, Acarya was filled with ecstatic love. He then saw the other five Deities and was equally overjoyed to see each one. Sri Acarya then inspected the go-downs, but his mind was constantly distracted by thoughts of Sri Syamananda Prabhu. As he was thinking in this way, someone suddenly announced that Syamananda had just arrived from Utkala.

Hearing this, Acarya and his men dashed to welcome him. When Syamananda and his companions entered the house of Sri Acarya, Syamananda could not check his emotions. They embraced, soaking each other with their tears. Acarya then asked about Syamananda’s well being. The same emotional scene occurred when Narottama arrived there. Sri Thakura Mahasaya then introduced Syamananda to all the Vaisnavas, and Sri Syamananda in turn introduced Rasikananda and his other devotees. Sridasa, Gokulananda, Vyasa Cakravarti, Ramacandra and Govinda Kaviraja were extremely happy to meet Cattaraja, Ramakrsna, Kumuda and the others. Narottama then took Ramacandra and Syamananda to a beautiful house and said to Rasikananda affectionately, “My dear Rasikananda, try to manage everything smoothly and peacefully. Be very careful to look after the guests so they do not experience any inconvenience.” Rasikananda listened humbly with folded hands and remained quiet. His humility charmed the heart of Narottama.

Thakura Mahasaya and Ramacandra returned to Sri Acarya’s place and sent Sri Govinda Kaviraja to take Syamananda to the temple of Sri Gaurasundara. Syamananda was ecstatic to see the beautiful form of the Lord and requested to see the other five Deities. Govinda also showed Syamananda the store rooms. Sri Rasikananda, Purusottama, Sri Kisora and other devotees had brought many items from home to contribute for the festival. Thus their gifts were added to the huge stock. In this way the commodities increased and the store rooms bulged with goods. Syamananda then went to Sri Acarya’s place and together they relished discussions about Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. In this way that wonderful day came to a close.

In the morning everyone completed their daily duties and began to wonder why Sri Jahnava Devi had not arrived in Kheturi yet. As they were thinking in this way, a brahmana arrived and reported that Sri Jahnava Iswari had just crossed the River Padmavati. Everyone happily scrambled towards the bank of the river to greet Sri Iswari. The news rapidly spread and people came running from all directions.

After bowing to her feet, Acarya asked about her well-being. She replied, “Upon receiving your letter we were all extremely anxious to come to Kheturi at once.” At that time when Jahnava had received the invitation to Kheturi, Krsnadasa Atyudara, the elder brother of Suryadasa Sarkhela, was also present there. Hearing about the forthcoming festival, Srila Raghupati Upadhyaya, Murari, Caitanya, Jnanadasa, Manohara, Kamalakara Pippalai, Sri Jiva Pandita, Madhava Acarya, Nrsimha Caitanya Dasa, Kanai, Sankara, Sri Gaurangadasa, Vrndavana, Sri Minaketana, Ramadasa, Nakari, Sri Balarama and others, bowed to the feet of the two Iswaris and humbly said, “We would also like to go to Kheturi.” Hearing this Sri Jahnava happily requested Sri Paramesvara dasa to begin preparations for their journey immediately.
On the day of Sri Iswari’s departure, many Vaisnavas from distant places came to see Sri Iswari and when they came to know about the festival, they also were eager to go along with her. They enthusiastically rushed back to their houses and began preparing for the journey. For this reason the entire party was held up for some time.
At the time of their departure they suddenly heard a deep voice speaking to them from the sky saying, “Srinivasa and Narottama are extremely dear to Me and are empowered by Me to distribute divine love. I am completely bound by their love. In Kheturi you will all see Me dance in the sankirtana along with My companions. The power of My love will drive the three worlds mad and no one will escape. Your journey will certainly be a great success. Everyone is eagerly waiting for you. From Kheturi, you should go to Vrndavana, and when you return from Vrndavana you should distribute pure devotional love to everyone.”

Upon hearing this voice, Sri Iswari wept with joy, and all the great personalities assembled there were overcome with happiness. Sri Jahnava consoled Sri Vasu devi, Ganga and Viracandra and, chanting the holy names of Gaura Nityananda, she and her party began their journey by boat to Kheturi. Meanwhile, news of Sri Iswari’s future trip to Vraja via Kheturi spread everywhere.

After some distance, they stopped the boat and Sri Iswari visited the house of a fortunate merchant who was always absorbed in the glories of Nityananda Prabhu. His love overflowed to have Iswari in his house. Favoring them, Sri Iswari decided to take rest for the day in his house. Raghunatha Khaja, son of Bhagavan and favorite disciple of Jagadisa Pandita, came to meet Iswari at that time.

Early the next morning they started for Amvika, where Sri Hrdaya Caitanya greeted Sri Iswari. Seeing the Deities there of Nitai Caitanyacandra, she was filled with ecstatic emotions, and thereafter she and her companions took prasada. Sri Jahnava reported everything to Hrdaya Caitanya who also decided to go to Kheturi. In the meantime, Sri Caitanyadasa, son of Sri Vansivadana, came to meet Sri Iswari and also decided to go to Kheturi. At that time one man came from Santipura and reported that Sri Acyutananda, son of Advaita Prabhu, was practically dead due to the unbearable misery of separation from the Lord. His mother, Sri Sita, ordered him to go to Kheturi and thus they planned to start in the morning. Hearing this, Sri Iswari became so happy that she immediately instructed him to tell Acyutananda that he should travel along with her party. Sri Iswari and her companions happily spent that night in the house of Hrdaya Caitanya Pandita. In the morning she observed Sri Mangala Arati and dedicated herself to the feet of Nitai Caitanya. She then started for Navadvipa.

Reaching the outskirts of Navadvipa, she began to weep thinking of the wonderful pastimes of the Lord. When the favorite associates of Caitanya Mahaprabhu who were still alive in Navadvipa heard that Sri Jahnava had come to their place, they all rushed happily to meet her. As she got down from the palanquin all the Vaisnavas of Navadvipa bowed to her feet, and she introduced her companions to the Navadvipa devotees. How can that glorious meeting be described? Many of the devotees were bowing at each other’s feet, while others embraced one another, and still others began to loudly sing the glories to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. A long time passed before they were capable of checking their ecstatic loving feelings.

Eventually Pandita Sripati, brother of Srivasa Pandita, suggested to Sri Madhava Acarya and others, “I think we should take bath here in the Ganges.” Everyone was delighted by the proposal and rushed to take their bath. Meanwhile, Sripati quickly went to Navadvipa and returned with many items. Sri Jahnava Iswari cheerfully fed them and afterwards took something herself.

The party then entered into Navadvipa and went to the house of Srivasa. Advaita Prabhu’s son, Sri Gopala, brother of Acyuta, Sri Kanu Pandita, Visnudasa Mahasaya, Vanamali dasa and other great Vaisnavas came to greet them. Everyone was jubilant to meet one another. Srimati Iswari privately spoke to Acyutananda, explaining about the festival. Delighted, he immediately announced to his followers about the upcoming Kheturi festival. Quickly the news spread throughout Navadvipa and everyone was eager to attend the festival. Afterwards they all met in the house of Srivasa and took their meals. Meanwhile people from all over Navadvipa came running to see the meeting of the Vaisnavas. A long time passed joyfully in this way until eventually the devotees went to bed.

Early in the morning they resumed their journey. Upon arriving in Akaihata, they went to the house of Krsnadasa, the great singer, who quickly arranged food for them. He also prepared himself for going to Kheturi.

The next morning they again traveled on until they reached Kantakanagara. Krsnadasa Thakura was the first to be informed of their arrival and immediately came forward to greet them and brought them to his house. Very shortly thereafter, Sri Raghunandana and his companions arrived there, then Vaninath and Sivananda came along with others. Vallabha, Caitanya dasa, Bhagavatacarya, Nartaka (dancer) Gopala, Jita Misra, Raghu Misra, Kasinath Pandita, Uddhava, Sri Nayanananda Misra and other favorite followers of Caitanya Mahaprabhu also came there. Everyone was overjoyed to meet one another and overwhelmed upon seeing the beauty of Sri Gauranga and Dasa Gadadhara. Afterwards they tearfully went to see the place where the Lord accepted sannyasa. A long time passed before they were able to calm themselves, eventually they went to take bath in the Ganges.

Meanwhile Sri Yadunandana collected many varieties of sweet for them and after offering them to Sri Gaurangacandra, placed separate plates of sweets in separate rooms. After coming back from the Ganges they very gladly took mahaprasada. On that day, Sri Jahnava Iswari in a happy mood went to cook for the devotees. She cooked various items and then offered them to Sri Gaurangacandra, who very happily accepted them. After some time, she affectionately distributed prasada to all the devotees. Everyone delightedly relished the prasada which tasted like nectar. Afterwards Sri Iswari took some prasada. After her, Sri Yadunandana and others ate.

Yadunandana, being extremely moved by remembrance of his spiritual master, Dasa Gadadhara, began preparing for the trip to Kheturi. He carefully instructed the priest of the temple to be attentive to the service of Sri Gauranga. By the evening all the preparations were complete.

In the meantime, all the mahantas gathered in the courtyard of Sri Gauranga. After observing Sri Gauranga’s arati ceremony, they started sankirtana. In this way most of the night passed in glorification of Krsna. Late at night they took a short nap. In the morning, after offering their obeisances at the feet of Gauracandra, they started out for Kheturi and very soon they crossed the River Padmavati. Sri Iswari sent a messenger to inform Acarya Thakura of their arrival. Excited and happy, Sri Acarya, Sri Thakura Mahasaya and Syamananda all stood together, shining as brilliantly as the sun, expectantly staring at the path waiting for her arrival. Seeing these three exalted souls waiting on the path, Sri Iswari could not contain her emotions and got down from her palanquin, while Srinivasa and others ran to her and fell at her feet. Srinivasa and the other devotees then bowed to the feet of Sri Acyutananda and the rest of the devotees. Everyone was overwhelmed with intense loving sentiments – someone held on to Srinivasa crying, and someone else embraced Narottama, another devotee could not let Ramacandra out of his embrace, while another person soaked Sri Gokulananda with his tears. One devotee stretched out his arms to greet Sridasa, and another affectionately embraced Syamananda and Govinda Kaviraja.

When the party entered into Kheturi proper, the entire village was submerged in an ocean of happiness. With great care Acarya Thakura escorted the devotees to separate houses and appointed Ramacandra Kaviraja to the service of Raghunatha Acarya and his associates. He appointed Syamananda to the service of Sri Hrdaya Caitanya. Sri Nrsimha Kaviraja was appointed to serve Sri Caitanyadasa and some others, and Sri Vyasa Acarya took care of Sripati, Srinidhi Pandita and their associates. He asked Sri Vallabhi Kanta to serve Krsnadasa and other devotees from Akaihata, and Sri Govinda Kaviraja took charge of serving Sri Raghunandana and his companions. Ramakrsna, Kumuda and their associates were requested to look after Vaninatha, Jita Misra and others. Kaviraja Bhagavan was put in the service of Sri Yadunandana Cakravarti, and Sri Gopiramana and others were appointed to the service of the other Vaisnavas. Srinivasa arranged separate stocks of food for separate houses, and Sri Acarya Thakura and Thakura Mahasaya oversaw everything to assure that all was executed properly.

Simply hearing about the arrival of all these great mahantas in Kheturi can fulfill all the desires of the listeners.

So hear attentively as I, Narahari, narrate this Narottama Vilasa.

THE SEVENTH VILASA

All glories to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Nityananda Prabhu, Advaita Acarya and all the associates of the Lord. Please bestow your mercy upon this fallen soul. All glories to the merciful listeners. Kindly listen attentively to this narration.

As news of the Kheturi festival spread throughout the country, everywhere people were heard speaking about it: “Oh brother, Sri Khetari has become beautified by the association of the devotees. It is now the most fortunate village on the earth and is the abode of eternal joy.” Everyone in Sri Kheturi; men, women, aged and even the children could not check their tears upon seeing the assembly of devotees. Someone said, “Many more Vaisnavas have arrived today, they look as effulgent as the brilliant sun. ” Another person commented, “By the power of these Vaisnavas even the atheistic offenders feel compelled to utter the name of Krsna.” Someone else remarked, “Sri Santosa is certainly the most fortunate King, just see how carefully he has arranged accommodations for all the devotees.” Others said, “The King is very attentive to the well-being of all mankind.” Someone else commented, “The flower-men have been told to supply beautiful garlands, while others were requested to prepare sandalwood paste. The instrumentalists have been ordered to begin playing on the Sukla Pancami day of Phalguna.” Everywhere bustling preparations for the festival were under way, as people chattered excitedly in anticipation: “The king has invited all the neighbouring kings to the abhiseka ceremony. Tomorrow is the auspicious full moon day, exactly the appropriate time for the Deities to be installed in the temple.” Other’s said, “Thakura Mahasaya has transformed this land. Previously the area was overrun with wicked thieves and rogues who knew nothing about religion. Neither could they understand what the results of their inauspicious behaviour would be. These ignorant people were accustomed to severing the heads of goats, lambs and buffalos. Some of them were even so degraded that they would dance with the heads of men fixed on the top of their swords. Such persons were accustomed to indulge in intoxication and illicit sex. Yet, by the influence of Narottama, even such atrocious persons have become exempt from the results of their sinful activities.” In this way, the glories of Narottama were sung continually throughout the town. People came from far and wide carrying all varieties of commodities for the imminent festival. Everyone who entered into Kheturi was immediately freed from all distress. The association of Sri Thakura Mahasaya soothed the hearts of all.

In the evening one devotee told Acarya that many kholas and kartalas had been made and stocked in a suitable place, and requested that he come to inspect them. Sri Acarya, along with Gauranga, Gokula and Devidasa happily went to inspect the instruments. They first worshipped the instruments while chanting the names of Gaura Nityananda. Thereafter they went to see Sri Iswari and informed her about the abhiseka ceremony.

In the morning, when all the mahantas had finished their morning duties, Sri Acarya and Thakura Mahasaya came to them and offered them beautiful new clothes.

Meanwhile, King Sri Santosa Raya noted with pleasure that all the arrangements for the opening ceremony were complete. The gorgeous canopy which had been hung in the courtyard increased the charm of the festival arena. Many seats were arranged for the mahantas under the canopy, and the wide courtyard of the temple was tastefully decorated with innumerable banana trees, coconuts, flowers, mango twigs, and pitchers filled with water. Seeing that the arrangements were complete, Sri Acarya personally informed Her Holiness Jahnava mata, and she came and sat in her private seat. At the request of Srinivasa, all the mahantas took their seats. The atmosphere in the courtyard was most pleasing, as the mahantas chatted mildly amongst themselves. Sri Acarya then requested their permission to begin the auspicious abhiseka ceremony.

Having received the blessings of all, Srinivasa performed the bathing ceremony and other rites swiftly, in accordance with the instructions given by Srila Rupa Gosvami. After completing the bathing, Srinivasa revealed the names of the Deities as had been prophesied in his dream. He then placed the Deities on the throne in the following order: Sri Gauranga, Vallabhi Kanta, Sri Braj Mohan, Sri Krsna, Sri Radha Kanta, and Sri Radha Ramana. He worshipped the Lords, performed arati and offered their Lordships sumptuous food. The bhoga was removed after some time and the place was thoroughly cleansed. Srinivasa then placed a garland around the neck of each Deity. He then gave the offered garlands and sandalwood paste to the mahantas, who happily wore the garlands and smeared their bodies with the paste while gleefully shouting out the glories of the Lord.

Meanwhile the musical instruments played melodiously and it appeared that the evils of the world were minimized simply by that sound. Permission was then given to Sri Thakura Mahasaya to begin sankirtana. His heart full of joyful anticipation, Sri Thakura told Devidasa to get ready. Devidasa, Vallabha, Gokula and Gauranga quickly gathered their instruments and entered the courtyard. Standing in front of Devidasa, Narottama’s appearance charmed the hearts of all. The tilak on his forehead and the tulsi beads around his neck appeared to glitter brilliantly. Narottama called out to Gaura, Nitai, Advaita and others, then bowed to all the mahantas. Smiling brightly, he began sankirtan in a soft voice, accompanied by the kartals. His body was drenched in sweat mixed with tears of joy. The sound of drums joined in, mingling with the voices of the singers, creating celestial music. Unable to control himself, Raghunandana began to chant the glories of the Lord at the top of his voice, roaring like an enraged lion. At that moment, Sri Acarya gave Raghunandana garlands and sandalwood paste which he at once touched to the drums and cymbals. Totally immersed in the ecstasy of transcendental love, Raghunandana smeared the body of Narottama with the sandalwood paste, garlanded him with flowers and embraced him warmly. He also extended the same treatment to the other devotees present. They all bowed at the feet of Raghunandana and started to sing the preamble, beginning at a low pitch and gradually increasing until finally the atmosphere became so surcharged that everyone marvelled at the occasion.

Charmed by the marvellous voice of Narottama, the mahantas commented that Narottama was certainly directly empowered by the Lord to act as the custodian of transcendental music. Thinking in this way, they all embraced Narottama and began to dance with him jubilantly. The sandalwood paste on their bodies and the flowing garlands added extra luster to the occasion. At this point, Gauranga and His associates could no longer remain unmoved and thus personally appeared at the scene. The atmosphere was suddenly surcharged with emotion and the devotees entered into a state of trance as they beheld the appearance of Sri Caitanya, Lord Nityananda, Advaita, Srinivasa, Gadadhara, Murari, Svarupa, Haridasa, Vakresvara, Jagadisa, Gauridasa. The son of Saci began to dance ecstatically with Sri Acyutananda and the others. Similarly, Sri Nityananda danced with Narottama, Sri Advaita danced with Ramacandra and others, while Pandita Gadadhara danced with Srinivasa Acarya. The whole assembly thus became caught up in the mood of great ecstasy and innumerable associates of the Lord including Srivas Pandit, Murari Gupta, Svarupa, Haridasa, Suklambara Brahmacari, Vasudeva Datta, Vakresvara Pandit, Gadadhara Dasa, Mukunda, Narahari, Gauri Dasa Pandita, Nakula Brahmacari, Jagadisa, Sujadasa, Acarya Nandana, Srinatha, Mahesha, Jodu, Madhusudana, Govinda, Madhava Basurai, Ramananda, Vijaya, Dhananjaya Datta, Sanatana, Rupa, Raghunatha, Kasisvara also began to dance.

It seemed that the visible and invisible had convened at that place as everyone sang and clapped their hands along with the throbbing beating of the drums. Glancing in every direction the Lord showered His love on all present and in reciprocation the devotes chanted the names of Sri Krsna Caitanya. The promises which the Lord had made to Narottama in his dream were now realized to the amazement of the devotees. Who can understand the inconceivable potency of the Lord?

Suddenly the Lord and His associates disappeared from the scene, and immediately everyone’s trance was broken. The devotees lamented piteously, feeling intense separation from Gaura, Nityananda, Advaita, Srivasa, Gadadhara, Murari, Haridasa, Vakresvara Pandita, Narahari, Gauradasa and the others. Sri Acyutananda and others began to ask themselves if indeed it had actually taken place or whether they had simply been dreaming. Narottama, Srinivasa, Ramacandra, Syamananda and others fell to the ground. Grief stricken, they cried out to the Lord. Even the non-believers who attended the festival simply out of curiosity or seeking some entertainment or fun, left the area as changed men. The brahmana Baninath was first to regain consciousness. Seeing the devotees lying in various stages of collapse, he and others immediately began to nurse the devotees and gradually they returned to external consciousness.

Her Holiness Jahnavi Devi told Narottama and Srinivasa that she fully appreciated their ? and advised them to hold it. She then told them that according to the scriptures it was time to play fagu, with coloured powder. Srinivasa and Narottama then went to meet all the other mahantas who praised the two acknowledging them as eternal associates of the Lord. Sri Nityananda expressed His satisfaction by stating that neither He, nor anyone else present, would ever forget the wonderful experience which the festival afforded them.

Srinivasa and Narottama then invited the mahantas to participate in the fagu play and this idea was greeted with everyone’s full approval. Sri Santosh Rai brought pots filled with different kinds of scented fagu. Narottama, with the help of Ramacandra, gave the first pot of fagu to Her Holiness. Together they entered the temple and placed it on the body of the Lord. Then Sri Acyutananda, Raghunandana, Srinidhi, Kasinatha, Hrdaya Caitanya, Jodu and others put fagu on the body of Sri Gauranga, Radha Kanta, Sri Vallabha Kanta, Sri Braj Mohan, Sri Radha Raman. While playing some of the devotees recited poetry, while others chanted the glories of the Lord’s Vrndavana and Navadvipa pastimes. In this way everyone was totally absorbed in chanting, dancing, reciting the Lord’s glories and engaging in the fagu festival. Thousands of people joined in and the fagu thrown about was sufficient to cover the sky. This continued until evening when everyone attended the arati of the Lord and chanted His glories. After some time they all assembled in the courtyard where Sri Acarya carefully performed the necessary rituals observing the birthday of the Lord. To mark the occasion the Vaisnavas conducted all night kirtanas to the accompaniment of various percussion instruments.

In the morning everyone performed their morning ablutions. Her Holiness bathed with tepid water and said her daily prayers. Then along with Srinivas she went along to the kitchen to make sure it was stocked with all the necessary requirements. Smiling, she said to Srinivasa, “I wanted you to know the ingredients needed for the cooking and now I see that everything is ready. How did you know that I intended to cook everything with my own hands?” Saying this she sat down on a stool and began to prepare everything very carefully. Very quickly she prepared rice as well as various vegetable preparations and placed them with great care in trays and pots. She then presented these foodstuffs as an offering to the Lord.

Absorbed in ecstatic devotion, she watched lovingly as the Deities of Gauranga, Vallabha Kanta, Radha Mohana, Radha Kanta, Radha Krsna and Braj Mohana all partook of her mouthwatering preparations with great relish. After this, as was the custom, she then came out and closed the door. After waiting for some time she again entered the sanctum of the temple, removed the preparations, offered water for washing the mouths of the Lords and then offered the betel nuts. After this offering Srinivasa distributed the offered foodstuffs among the mahantas, who ate it all with great satisfaction. Next they all went to the Rajbhoga arati of the Lord, after which the performing priest presented them all with garlands of Tulsi leaves. The priest then placed the Deities to rest on soft beds and covered Their bodies with beautiful soft cloth and began to fan them with a yak tail fan. After doing so for some time he then came out, closed the door and offered his obeisances on the ground while reciting prayers.

Thereafter Srinivasa invited everyone to take prasada in the courtyard of the temple and then he cleaned the dust from the area and all the mahants sat in a circle. One devotee provided the banana leaf plates, while other devotees came around with salt, clarified butter, curd and milk. Her Holiness was very pleased to see such an assembly of devotees and ordered that the prasada be served promptly. The preparations included fried leafy vegetables, rice, soup, sour soup and condensed milk, and everyone was served to their full satisfaction. The aroma and the taste of the food was so tantalising that everyone ate much more than they needed and Sri Acyutananda remarked, “I cannot understand how I ate so much.” Sripati, Srinidhi and Baninath replied that it was all by the grace of Her Holiness that this was possible. Sri Raghunandana and others remarked that they would never again receive the same pleasure from eating as they had received on this auspicious occasion.

Srinivasa and Narottama then went to Her Holiness and requested, “You have worked very hard, now it is our desire that you sit down and take prasada.”

She replied, “My great desire is that I want to feed you all first and then I shall eat. For my sake please go and sit in the courtyard along with the others.” Sri Acarya and others then went and sat in the courtyard and they were served the feast in the same way as was before mentioned. Wit great affection, Her Holiness personally served prasada thus making everyone eat to their heart’s content. As the devotees happily ate they talked amongst themselves happily: “This is heavenly cooking, has anyone ever eaten such a fried leafy vegetable in all their life?” In this way they praised her culinary expertise and when they finished Raghunandana and a few others went to retire. Srinivasa then ate in the company of Narottama, Ramacandra, Govinda dasa, Rama Krsna, Mukunda, Gokulananda, Vyasa, Syamananda, Sri Krsna Vallabha, Devidasa, Bhagavan, Nrsimha, Gokula, Karnapura, Kishore, Rasikananda, Gauranga Thakura, Gopiramu and others. After finishing, they all washed their hands and took betel nuts. Sri Acarya then made a seat for Her Holiness and she happily took a small quantity of each of the items that had been prepared. Then with the help of Syamananda, Sri Acarya fed many other men and finally Balarama the priest and a few others were the last to partake.

After eating, Her Holiness bathed in tepid water in a private place and her personal attendant, a brahmana lady, wiped her body gently with a fine cloth. Jahnava mata had a slim figure and a golden complexion and was overcome by intense feelings of separation from her beloved Lord. Another lady brought Her Holiness a set of clean clothes. After changing and washing her mouth, Her Holiness took some betel nut while sitting on a sheet on the ground. As tears of gratitude rolled down her cheeks, she affectionately told Narottama, “Today I have made my eating complete.” Srinivasa and Syamananda also came before Jahnava mata and she said in a sweet voice, “We don’t think we should stay here any longer. I consider it best to start for Vrndavana tomorrow morning. To this Sri Acarya replied, “Though it pains us to hear this, I have nothing to reply. I know that there is nothing I can say to change your decision. The festival has now come to close so how can I object to the journey.” Her Holiness simply smiled in reply to this remark. Then, on Srinivasa’s request, she lay down on the sheet to rest for awhile.

Srinivasa, Narottama and Syamananda went to another place where they also took some rest. Thereafter they proceeded to the residence of Sri Acyutananda where all the mahantas were assembled and discussing topics of Sri Krsna’s life. Pleased to see their three hosts, the mahantas requested Sri Acarya, “We are sorry but we must now beg your permission to go. We would like to depart.” The Acarya replied, “What you have decided cannot be changed. If early tomorrow morning you arise and prepare your own food that will be convenient for us.” The mahants were amused by his suggestion and agreed to it and then returned to their respective lodgings.

Sri Acarya, along with Narottama and Syamananda went to the abode of the Lord along with Sri Santosh Rai and others and Sri Acarya told them everything.

He who derives pleasure from hearing these pastimes will no doubt have all his desires fulfilled.

Please listen attentively to Narottama Vilasa as told by Narahari.

THE EIGHTH VILASA

Glory to Gaura, Nityananda, Advaita and others. Be kind to this poor soul. Glory to the merciful listeners.

At the time of evening ceremony of waving light before Sri Gauracandra all the mahantas came to the temple. They became very happy to observe the ceremony. The priest gave them offered garlands and Tulsi. Then they began sankirtana. After that they went to their own rooms. Many items of food were offered to Prabhu. After Prabhu’s eating, Sri Acarya took prasadam for Iswari and then distributed that separately and served to every room. All of them became very happy to eat the tasteful prasadam. Sri Acarya told everybody to bless Santosa Raya who had arranged everything by giving the full financial help. They also blessed him. Being happy Acarya Mahasaya with his companions came to the temple of Prabhu. Sri Acarya, Thakura Mahasaya and Syamananda ate some prasadam. Again Sri Acarya cautioned those whom he had engaged in the service of the mahantas. As it was late at night, they all entered into their rooms and went to sleep. In the morning, they completed their morning duties. Now the cooks of the mahantas took their baths first, did their `Anhika’ and going round the Tulsi. Then they entered into the separate kitchens. Ramacandra Kaviraja with others supplied the necesary commodities to the cooks in each kitchen. Then the cooks began to cook varieties of items very gladly. At the time of cooking, Ramacandra and others used to be standing cautiously beside the kitchens if any cook needed any help.

Sri Santosa Raya was engaged in arranging separate containers decorated with betel leaves, gold and silver coins, beautiful silk dreses what he would offer to the mahantas. Sri Santosa Raya went to Sri Iswari and asked for her permission. Then he went to all the mahantas and offered them those things one by one. They all wore the silk cloths and sat for doing Anhika. Santosa Raya gave beautiful cloth and coins to each and everyone who came with the mahantas. At the time Acarya came to that place and became very glad to see the charity of Santosa Raya. In the meantime the priest informed that he had arranged prasadam separately. Sri Acarya requested them to take seats and began to serve food to them. The mahantas sat in rows and became very happy to eat prasadam.

In the courtyard of Sri Jahnava Iswari’s house, some Vaisnavas took their seats for taking meals. They were Krsnadasa Sarakhela, Madhava Acarya, Raghupati Upadhyaya, Krsna Bhaktavarya, Sri Minaketana, Ramadasa, Mahidhara, Murari, Caitanya, Jnanadasa, Manohara, Kamalakara Pippalai, Nrsimha Caitanya, Sri Jiva Pandita, Sri Gaurangadasa, Vrndavana, Sri Sankara, Kanai, Nakari, Krsnadasa, Paramesvaradasa, Balarama, Damodara and Mukunda. I am giving the names of these who sat with Sri Acyutananda for eating. They were Sri Gopala, younger brother of Acyutananda, Sri Kanu Pandita, Visnudasa, Narayana, Banamali dasa, Sri Ananta, Janardana, Sri Mahava, Lokanatha Bhagavatacarya. Raghunathacarya with his companions, Sri Caitanyadasa, son of Sri Vansivadana, with his companions, Sri Hrdaya Caitanya with his companions. All were enjoying the prasadam by sitting in their own rooms. What a beautiful scene there, all were enjoying prasadam delightfully. In another room were eating Sripati, Srinidhi, Krsnadasa, Sri Sanjaya, Kasinatha, Mukunda, Paramananda, Sekhar Pandita, Krsnadasa Vaisya, Subhananda, Sri Gopala Acarya, Kavicandra Kirtaniya and Sasthivara. Krsnadasa of Akaihata with his companions were eating in their place most gladly. Vaninatha, Sivananda, Vallabha Caitanya, Nartaka Gopala, Bhagavatacarya Jita Misra, Raghu, Sri Uddhava, Kasinatha, Sri Narayana Misra and Sri Mangala sat in one place and were eating all along very happily. Sri Raghunandana, Sulocana and others were eating in their room. Sri Yadunandana Cakravarty and his companions were taking prasadam by siting in their own place. Sri Acarya and Sri Thakura Mahasaya were inspecting their eating very carefully. When all the mahantas finished their eating, they were offered water for washing their mouths. After that they took prasadam. At last the priest fed all the Vaisnava guests there. Even the untouchable persons also got the highest respect there. At long last, Acarya and Thakura Mahasaya took their prasadam.

Who has witnessed such a big festival in his life? People used to say that they had never seen such a great festival. Some persons said that how it was possible for a human being to perform such a festival which was even totally impossible for the gods. Some persons said that those who had performed this festival, they were no human beings because all the devotees of Sri Caitanya were even worshipped by the gods. Some persons said that they had even moved the heretics by the topics on Krsna. Above all, the heretics had eaten the left over food of the Vaisnavas and prayed to them to rescue them from damnation. Some persons said that Narottama would rescue all the heretics from damnation and there would be not a single heretic in this country. In this way, the people began to glorify Narottama.

Now listen, Sri Acarya after taking some rest, told Thakura Mahasaya privately, “They will take their leave in the morning. They will take their baths after crossing Padmavati. We should pack some food for them, so that they can eat after bath.” Hearing this, Thakura Mahasaya did not lose time. He quickly ordered to prepare food. After food had been ready, he first of all offered them to Prabhu and then packed them separately. He reported Acarya that everything was ready but all these preparations could be done by the evening. Here all the mahantas being eager to observe the waving light ceremony came out of their rooms and gathered in the courtyard of Prabhu. The priest offered them garlands, and Tulsi. After the ceremony, the mahantas started sankirtana.

Within a while, the river of nectar began to flow there and all the mahantas began to swim in the ocean of love. They could not control themselves and fell on the ground out of ecstasy. Their beautiful bodies became smeared with dust. After a long time, they observed the Sayana Arati of Prabhu. Again the priest gave garlands and Tulsi to them. Then the mahantas returned to their own places. Acarya with Narotama supplied prasadam separately to each room.

He told the mahantas, “Tomorrow Khetari will sink into utter darkness. I am giving some prasadam with you so that you can eat after crossing Padmavati. At noon, you can reach Budhari. Govinda with some men and the cooks should enter first to the village. Ramacandra and others will go with them up to Budhari. Then they will be back here for accompanying Sri Iswari to Vrndavana. Now please accept these prasadam and eat all of your Srinivasa fed all of them with a broken heart. Even the mahantas became so emotional that they all kept mum. Then Acarya reported everything to Sri Iswari. Observing the disturbed condition of Srinivasa, Sri Iswari consoled him and most affectionately gave him her left over food. In a delighted mind, Acarya asked Santosa to make the boats ready for the mahantas. Santosa said that he had already done that. Hearing this Acarya became very glad and went his room to take some rest.

In the morning all of them did their morning duties and observed the morning ceremony of waving lights. Sri Govinda Kaviraja with some companions and cooks started first. They crossed Padmavati and at noon reached Budhari. Here the mahantas in the morning went to take leave of Sri Iswari. Sri Acyutananda told her in crying, “Most probably, I may not see you again.” Sri Gopala and others told something which could break the heart. Sripati, Srinidhi and others, Vaninatha and others, Raghunatha Acarya and others, all of them became perturbed and grief-stricken at the time of taking leave. Sri Hrdaya Caitanya said, “Please, let me see your feet again.” Sri Canda Haldara, Mitu Haldara, Sri Caitanya and others could not speak anything. Sri Raghunandana told her, “Please, be kind to us to see you soon.” Sri Yadunandana said, “Please come back. Pippalai and others go back to Khardaha.” After bidding farewell to them, she became extremely sad. Other mahantas gathered in the courtyard of Prabhu and became ecstatic in emotion. They laid prostrate on the ground and their bodies became smeared with dust. They all asked for the well-being of Acarya and others from Prabhu and prayed to him to favor them to listen to this sankirtana life after life. The priest gave them the clothes used by Prabhu. By holding the clothes on their hands, they started with broken hearts.

Sri Hrdaya Caitanya by holding Acarya in his lap, told mildly, “Visit Amvika time to time and let me see you. Syamananda is yours.” Acarya said, “Syamananda is my life. I do not think of him anything other than this. To Narottama and Ramacandra, Syamananda and his companions are most precious things.” Hrdaya Caitanya most affectionately dedicated Syamananda to Srinivasa.

When they left Khetari village, an outcry of despair arose in that village. The people of that village became mad in sorrow. On the bank of Padmavati, Acarya consoled everybody. After embracing everyone, the mahantas with Ramacandra and others boarded on the boats which started at once. Acarya and others rolled on the ground with loud crying. Observing them, the mahantas could not resist their tears. By the wish of Prabhu, they somehow crossed Padmavati. They took their baths and ate prasadam and then started for Budhari village.

Acarya and others returned to Khetari. Srinivasa with Sri Thakura Mahasaya and Syamananda went to the temple of Prabhu. The priest told Acarya Thakura, “Just now, Sri Iswari took her bath. After the leaving of the mahantas, she had been sitting alone in a pool of tears. Sri Madhava Acarya and others also took their baths just now.”

Hearing this, Sri Acarya again became restless and hastily went to see Sri Iswari. Sri Iswari eagerly asked Srinivasa about the going of the mahantas and he reported everything in brief. On hearing the report, Sri Iswari looked at the face of Srinivasa whom she found very thin not only for the misery of separation but also for his fasting since last night. She thought, “Today they are not at all thinking of their eating. I m afraid of their health. If I do not take the initiative of feeding them they won’t get anything to eat.” Thinking so, she told Acarya sweetly, “You had already taken your bath and it is now afternoon. But you are still in fasting. It is paining me. So be quiet and take food in my house.” Hearing this, Acarya became so obliged that he called Narottama and others to that place. Sri Iswari affectionately ordered Nrsimha Caitanya and other to call everyone and sit in a row on the ground. Someone arranged the banana leaves and someone filled the glasses with water. Then Sri Iswari served various kinds of food to them. Being ordered by Sri Iswari they all ate happily. Sri Iswari out of affection again and again served a profuse quantity of food to them. They all ate voraciously. After their eating, the servants cleaned the place.

Sri Acarya and others happily went to gather in the courtyard of Prabhu. Someone gave them offered betel leaves. When they returned to their own rooms, they found many presons were waiting for mahaprasadam. So they were also served prasadam. In this way a huge number of Vaisnavas were fed. Sri Iswari’s loving service cooled their miseries of separation. So a day ended happily. Sri Iswari went to the temple and became ecstatic in observing the beauty of Prabhu. The priest gave her the offered garland.

In the evening during the ceremony of waving light, millions of people gathered in the courtyard. Next started the sankirtan whose divine sound covered the world. Aged, young, respectable became mad in sankirtana. Even the gods amalgamated themselves with the people to join in that sankirtana. Some persons began to roll on the ground while some began to roar like lions. Who will describe the happiness of Sri Nama sankirtana? In this way they spent the whole night unconsciously. Due to the wish of Prabhu, they stopped at last. Sri Jahnava Iswari happily returned to her house. In the morning, after finishing her daily duties, she took bath in hot water. After doing worship, she began cooking preparations. Here Sri Acarya and others after taking their baths and observing the rajbhoga arati of Prabhu came to see Sri Iswari. In the meantime, Sri Iswari offered food to Prabhu and after his eating she took away the bowls from the temple. Then she sat among Sri Acarya and others. She asked Acarya anxiously about Ramacandra and others. At the same time, they returned from Vudhuri.

They reported, “Everything could be completed perfectly and the mahantas could eat at Vudhuri very timely. The mahantas did sankirtana after their eating. At late night they slept a little and in the early morning, everyone became very much perturbed to bid farewell to us. Most probabaly, we all became stone-hearted at that time of separation so that we became able to cross Padmavati to come here very easily.” Saying so, they became silent. Sri Iswari consoled them and fed them. Sri Acarya ate the left over food of Sri Iswari and then fed the rest of the Vaisnavas who had been waiting for prasadam. Everyone showed their respect to Sri Acarya who consoled Santosa and others by saying, “Due to the wish of Sri Iswari, everything is over very succesfully. Now she is eager to go to Vrndavana and I should not stop her from going. When she will be back from Vrndavana, you can see her feet again. Now don’t show her your restlessness of minds. Tomorrow morning, she will start.” Hearing this, Sri Santosa Raya slowly went to Iswari and stood there very humbly. Knowing his mind, Sri Iswari consoled him and Santosa requested her to come back soon to them. Sri Iswari assured him. Then Sri Santosa Raya most gladly brought all the things what he would give to Sri Iswari for carrying to Vraja. He gave fine silky clothes, ornaments, jewelleries for Sri Govinda, Gopinatha, Madanamohana, Sri Radhavinoda, Sri Radha-ramana and Radha Damodara. Apart from these, he also gave gold and silver coins to Sri Iswari. Sri Jahnava became very happy to see that every arrangement had become complete very perfectly.

At the time of waving the light ceremony of the evening, Sri Iswari told something silently to Prabhu and the garland of Prabhu fell on the ground. The priest gave that to Sri Iswari who held that on her head. After Sri Nama sankirtana, Sri Iswari sleep. In the morning, she first went to take her leave of Prabhu. The priest gave her offered garlands.

Now I shall give the names of companions who went with Sri Iswari. They were Sri Pandita Krsnadasa, son of Suryadasa, Madhava Acarya, Murari, Caitanya, Krsnadasa brahmana, Nrsimha Caitanya, Balarama, Mohindhara, Kanai, Nakaridasa, Gauranga, Sankara, Sri Paramesvara dasa, Dasa Damodara, Raghupati Vaidya, Upadhyaya Manohara, Jnanadasa, Mukundadasa and others. From Khetari, Sri Iswari took Sri Govinda, Sri Gopiramana, Bhagavana, Gokula, Nrsimha, Vasudeva and others. The people of Khetari lost their patience and began to cry. Sri Narottama, Acarya and other began to follow them for some distance in crying. The feature of love, Sri Jahnava Iswari, pacified them in various ways and forbade them to follow her anymore. So she got up in a palanquin and started her journey. Sri Acarya, Narottama and Syamananda could not check their tears at the time of their going. In a broken heart, they returned to Khetari. The people of Khetari in a dying condition began to sing the glory of Sri Jahnava.

Someone told to another, “She will be back very soon from Vrndavana.” Some said, “She will go to her village in another way. What is the use of coming here?” Someone said, “This Acarya Mahasaya has won over Sri Iswari by his love and devotion.” All these discussions made them very happy.

Here Sri Acarya, Sri Thakura Mahasaya and Syamananda returned to the temple. Due to the wish of Sri Iswari, they pacified themselves and completed their baths and worship and then went to observe the waving light ceremony of Prabhu. They visited all the Vaisnava houses, met them and talked with them. Then they fed others the prasadam and took their seats in the courtyard of Prabhu. The cook of Prabhu began to serve food to them. After eating they washed their mouths and took betel leaves. Acarya along with others became engaged in talking about Krsna.

In the morning Acarya came to the temple courtyard and told the Vaisnavas who were about to take their leave, “It is your place. Please come here from time to time. Now it is evening and too late to start today. Tomorow morning you should start for your own villages. Now please accept the things which Santosa Raya had cherished in his mind to give.” All of them became glad to hear the nectar-like words of Acarya. Thus Sri Santosa Raya, according to their permission, offered fine clothes and coins to them. In the evening, all of them observed the waving light and then went to their rooms to sleep. Srinivasa with his companions sat there for sometime in discussing the topic of Krsna and then went to bed. In the morning, Acarya and others gathered in the courtyard of Prabhu and observed the morning waving light. The Vaisnavas who would like their leave then, also gathered and observed the ceremony. The priest gave them garlands of Prabhu.

Gradually all the Vaisnava guests took their leave of Khetari in singing the glory of the great festival. The brahmanas, the singers, the dancers and the instrumentalists also took their leaves in tears. On observing the procession of men from Khetari, the people of that place began to say, “Who is able to count the heads”? Someone said, “Everything has been possible for Narottama.” In this way, they began to sing the glory of Narottama. Here Narottama and Srinivasa took their baths and after doing their worship, ate some sweets.

We don’t know on what topic Narottama and Srinivasa were engaged in talking about but we see them wet with the tears from their eyes. They observed the beauty of Prabhu and rajbhoga arati of Prabhu. Then they ate prasadam and after that took betel leaves. Then they took their seats.

Acarya very affectionately told Sri Thakura Mahasaya and Syamananda, “I shall start tomorow morning with Syamananda and by crossing Padmavati, I shall go to Vudhuri village. From there I shall go to Yajigrama, I won’t stay there long and shall go to Vana-Visnupura. Again I shall be back to Yajigrama.

And Syamananda will first visit Navadvipa and Amvika and then should go and settle at Vahadurapura in Dharenda. He should preach devotion in all those places and should send me a letter with all reports. I shall send a letter with detailed reports of Yajigrama to him very soon. When Sri Iswari will be back here, do send me a letter as soon as possible. Sri Iswari will take this course and from here some persons should accompany her. Then all of us will come to Khetari again very soon.”

Though this news of his going was a shock to Thakura Mahasaya, yet he pacified himself and went to prepare arrangements for Acarya’s going. He sent a letter quickly to Vudhuri and arranged the boats for crossing Padmavati. The things which would go with Syamananda were handed over in charge of Rasikananda. The things which would go with Sri Acarya were handed over in the charge of Karnapura Kaviraja. Sri Santosa arranged all these things and reported to Sri Thakura Mahasaya. Hearing this, Acarya became very happy and along with others went to inspect the store room of Prabhu. He found that the store room was full of commodities and praised Santosa for this superb deed. They all spent the evening in enjoying the waving light ceremony. The priest put on the garlands around their necks for which they began to look very beautiful.

Observing the beauty of Prabhu, Acarya again and again glanced at Narottama knowing his intention, Sri Thakura Mahasaya started sankirtana. The other singers and instrumentalists began to arrange their instruments such as khola and kartalas. Devidasa, Gokula, Gauranga and others began to play khola and kartalas.

Sri Thakura Mahasaya began to sing a song written by Sri Vasu Ghosa: “Oh Sakhi, look at the feature of Gaura. See, his beautiful face defeating milions of moons, his hands defeating the elephants, his eyes defeating the Khanjana birds. See, his beautiful forehead bedecked with tilaka, his long stretching hands and flower garland around his neck, his conch like throat and broad chest, bedecked with sandal and ornaments. See, his thigh and knee defeating the banana tree and his saffron dress, his white nails defeating millions of moons.” Vasu Ghosa says, “Gora where have you been? Has the providence created your beauty to charm the maids”?

How can I describe the sweet tune of the song? Mrdanga accompaniment with the song attracted everone’s heart. On listening the sweet sound of the mrdanga and the melting voice of Narottama made Sri Acarya Thakura mad in love. He stood up to dance in a beautiful posture which maddened the listeners. He began to shine in his beautiful golden complexion. How magnetic was his smile in his moon-like face. How attractive were his lips with kunda-like white teeth. How big were his lotus eyes stretching up to his ears. How beautiful were his bee-like eyebrows and parrot beak-like nose. How long were his hands and broad was his chest. How deep was his navel and beautiful were his legs and feet. Viewers became mesmerised to see his dancing. The whole of Khetari was present there. Even many respected persons from distant places were present there. The whole festival area was lighted up with lamps. Sometimes the people used to sing loudly the glory of all singing and dancing there.

Even the gods in their carriers appeared on the scene to enjoy the dancing of Srinivasa. The gods began to say that it was not at all possible for human being to dance like this. Only the servants of Sri Caitanya could do this. The gods began to shower flowers on the head of Acarya. While dancing, Srinivasa forgot his own entity and in emotion he began to embrace Devidasa in a pool of tears. Who can restrain himself from being moved to listen to the khola recital of Devidasa and kirtana recital of Sri Gokula? Sri Thakura Mahasaya began to shout, “Speak, speak” by embracing him. Syamananda, Ramacandra Kaviraja and others became overwhelmed with emotion and began to weep. Thus the ocean of happiness overflowed there for the beautiful sankirtana. Due to the wish of Prabhu, they stopped at late night. After completing kirtana, all of them began to roll on the ground and smeared the dust of that place. After embracing each and everyone, they returned to their own houses to take some rest.

In the morning, Sri Acarya dressed up and came to the courtyard of Prabhu. Syamananda with his companions also came to that place. Narottama with Ramacandra and Santosa and others in a broken heart came too. Even the people of Khetari on hearing the leaving of Acarya, came running to the place. The courtyard of Prabhu became a crowded place. Syamananda bowed before Prabhu. The priest gave garland and clothes offering of Prabhu to Acarya who distributed those among others. Though inwardly Acarya was very much moved, yet outwardly he consoled everybody and started from Khetari. Sri Thakura Mahasaya became down with misery. Ramacandra pacified him very lovingly. On reaching the bank of Padmavati, Acarya Thakura hastily boarded on the boat to conceal his emotion. Sri Thakura Mahasaya told many things to Syamananda who began to float in a stream of tears. Narottama by taking Syamananda in his lap began to weep helplessly. Ramacandra pacified them. Syamananda got on the boat which started at once. They crossed the river and reached Vudhuri.

Here Thakura Mahasaya and others took their baths and returned to the courtyard of Prabhu. Sudenly the happy memories of Prabhu’s dancing with his associates made Narttama so happy that he began to sing the glory of the courtyard. The priest informed Sri Thakura Mahasaya that Prabhu’s arati was over and now they could eat prasadam. Sri Thakura Mahasaya with others ate happily and distributed prasadam among the villagers of Khetari.

On that day many heretics also ate prasadam. Now a change came to their minds and they began to talk to others in this way, “Oh brothers, how fruitless our own lives are. Who will rescue us from the judgement of Yama? This Thakura Narottama can do this.” Someone said, “I am scared of going near him.” Someone said, “Let us fall on his feet.” In saying this, they in crying fell on the feet of Narottama.
Sri Thakura Mahasaya who is an ocean of mercy, very sweetly told them, “Don’t cry. You are very fortunate. Sri Krsna Caitanya will favor you and rescue you from damnation.”
On hearing these hopeful words, the poor souls cried out, “Oh my lord, we had done all types of evil deeds. We are not afraid of doing those deeds. We had gone elsewhere for dacoity and only had returned last night. Those who did not go with us, rebuked us to a great extent. They were also dangerous dacoits but now due to you, they have become Vaisnavas. Oh my lord, be merciful to us.” These pathetic confessions melted the heart of Thakura Mahasaya who favored them all. He advised them, “Always do wise company and being very humble always listen and sing kirtana. Always be careful about behaving with Vaisnavas. Don’t do anything which may humiliate them. And always cite Harinama.” Saying so he embraced them all. All of them ran to fall on his feet and he put his feet on the heads of each and everyone. So devotion most automatically came to reign over them.

Sri Thakura Mahasaya became very anxious for not getting any news from Acarya. He decided to send Ramacandra to Acarya but in the meantime a man came with the letter of Acarya from Yajigrama. Being very glad, Thakura Mahasaya sent a reply to Acarya and began to sing the glory of Acarya.

All these episodes can purify your mind, so be kind to listen to Narottama Vilasa by Narahari.

THE NINTH VILASA

Glory to Gaura, Nityananda, Advaita and others. Be favorable to this poor soul. Glory to the merciful listeners.

While going to Vrndavana from Khetari, Sri Jahnava Iswari had done some transcendental deeds. Many wicked heretics got favor and mercy from her and obtained the most valuable gem-like devotion. Those who came in contact with her, got the favor of Sri Krsna Caitanya and became mad in singing the glory of Him. The road which Sri Iswari had taken for her travel, the local people used to follow her in that way. The village which she used to choose for her halt, the villagers there used to get extreme pleasure. In this way, favoring many poor souls, she went to Madhupuri (Mathura) quickly via Prayaga. She with all her followers took bath in Sri Visrama Ghata. She paid respect to a brahmana of Mathura and stayed there for that night. In the morning, after taking bath, again started her journey.

The news of her coming to Mathura, spread all over the country. The Gosvamis of Vrndavana quickly came forward to receive her. Here Sri Iswari became charmed to see the beauty of the forests of Vrndavana. She could not control her tears. So she got down from her palanquin and started walking on foot. Sri Paramesvara dasa told slowly to Iswari, “Sri Gopala Bhatta, Sri Bhugarbha, Lokanatha, Sri Jiva, Sri Krsna Pandita and others have come here to receive you.” Saying so, he showed her their coming towards her. Seeing them, Sri Jahnava became overwhelmed with joy. The Gosvamis began to shed tears on seeing Sri Iswari and fell on her feet. They were introduced to Krsnadasa Sarkhela, Madhavacarya etc. Sri Paramesvara dasa introduced Sri Govinda and others to them. Sri Govinda Kaviraja and others bowed to the feet of the Gosvamis. The Gosvamis most cordially and affectionately embraced them. Sri Jiva Gosvami talked alot with Sri Iswari and very carefully helped her to get on the palanquin. He took all of them very quickly to a lonely house. The people took to their heels to meet Sri Iswari. The priests of Sri Govinda, Gopinatha and Madanamohana came also to meet her. How can I describe the highest of pleasure which occurred in Vrndavana after this meeting?

When Sri Iswari with her followers settled themselves in that house, many items of food came to them. Sri Iswari first fed her men and then took something herself. Sri Gopala Bhatta and others most gladly returned to their houses. For observing the rajabhoga arati of Sri Govinda Sri Jiva Gosvami took all of them to the temple. Sri Jahnava Iswari became charmed to see the beauty of Sri Radha Govinda after entering into the temple. Sri Madhavacarya and others also became overwhelmed to observe Sri Govinda. After arati, they took mahaprasadam and returned to their house for taking rest. Sri Jiva Gosvami returned to his house. In the afternoon, Sri Jahnava Iswari and others quickly took their baths. Then they observed Madanamohana, Gopinatha, Sri Radhavinoda, Sri Radharamana and Sri Radha Damodara. She offered those clothes and ornaments to the deities which she had brought with her. Then they took prasadam.

She reported to Lokanatha about the great festival at Khetari and the course of her coming to Vrndavana. The Gosvamis became very glad to hear those incidents. The Gosvamis also narrated the happenings in Vrndavana. Sri Iswari became very perturbed to listen to the narrations. After checking her emotion, she told all of them to listen to the poetry composed by Govinda. His compositions so charmed the Gosvamis that they conferred the title of Kaviraja on Govinda.

After taking permission from them, Sri Iswari started for Bahulavana and then for Srikunda. Those who came from Srikunda, now accompanied Sri Iswari to that place. After visiting Radhakunda and Syamakunda, they went to Sri Manasa Ganga and Govardhana. Then they went to Vrsabhanupura and from there to Nandisvara. They also visited Sri Javata village where Balarama had done His rasalila sport. Again they returned to Vrndavana.

Sri Iswari cooked food for the deities and offered them. Then she distributed that prasadam among the Gosvamis. In this way, Sri Jahnava stayed a few days there. Sri Jiva Gosvami read out from his books for Sri Iswari. Now Sri Iswari with her followers visited the twelve forests of Vraja. Then she began to think returning to Gauda. The Gosvamis permitted her to go. She took her leave of Sri Govinda, Gopinatha, Madanamohana, Radha Damodara, Sri Radharamana and Sri Radha Vinoda. I am unable to describe her pathetic state of mind at the time of leaving. Madhava Acarya and others pacified her. That day they stayed there.

Gauridasa Pandita had a favorite disciple whose name was Varu Gangadasa, a man of fine qualities. Once he had come to Vrndavana but he could not live in one place for a long time and used to travel always here and there. Sri Iswari favored him and ordered him to go with her to Gauda. Thus by her order, he prepared himself to go with her. Here Govinda and others went to the houses of the Gosvamis to take farewell. They bowed to the feet of Sri Gopala Bhatta and Lokanatha. The Gosvamis blessed them by putting their feet on their heads and conveyed their blessings to Srinivasa and Narottama. From there they went to the house of Bhugarbha Gosvami and then to the house of Sri Jiva Gosvami. There they found Sri Krsnadasa Kaviraja and others. So getting all of them there, they fell on their feet. The Gosvamis blessed them wholeheartedly.

So Jiva Gosvami affectionately told Govinda, “Report everything to Acarya and send me a copy of your book Gitamrta. I shall finish this book which I am writting now very soon. I shall send it with a letter to you there.” Saying so, he gave his book Gopala Virudavali to Govinda. Krsnadasa Kaviraja highly recommended that book. In this way, they visited all the Gosvami houses and returned to their house for some rest.

Sri Iswari at late night went to bed and during her sleep Sri Gopinatha appeared before her in her dream. He gave His own garland to Iswari and in a sweet smile told her, “What you have thought about my lady-love, send me from Gauda as soon as possible. She will sit by my left side and this will remain on my right side. The beauty which will come out of that, you can see later on.” Saying so He entered into the temple.

She woke up and hid the garland in a private place. She went to observe the morning ceremony of waving light. Then she came back very gladly to her house. On that morning, in an auspicious moment, she started from there. The Gosvamis came to bid farewell and acompanied her for some distance. Then being ordered by Sri Iswari, they stopped following her but burst into tears. Sri Jahnava Iswari also began to weep. Krsnadasa Pandita, Madhava Acarya, Murari, Caitanya and others began to weep to. With them wept the people of Vraja. After a long time, the people of Vraja stopped following them and returned to their houses.

Sri Iswari with others came to Sri Mathura and decided to do a night halt there. She very carefully fed the Mathura brahmana. From there she started for Gauda. After a few days, she reached Khetari. Having got the news of her coming, Narottama out of joy, forgot his own entity. He sent a message to Ramacandra who with others at once came to Narottama’s house. They moved forward with the people of Khetari to receive Sri Iswari. Who can describe the flood of happiness when all of them met one another?

Narottama and others fell on the ground to bow to her feet. She became glad too to see Narottama and others again. Then with a big crowd she entered into Khetari proper. Sri Iswari was given the same house of the time of festival. Many Vaisnavas were engaged to serve her. Her companions were also given the same houses. Varu Gangadasa felt charmed to see the loneliness of the place. Ramacandra Kaviraja very carefully carried many necessary things to their houses separately. Sri Thakura Mahasaya earnestly requested Sri Iswari to take her bath. Thus she took hot bath and then ate some prasadam. Then she quickly cooked for Prabhu and offered Him. When the mahantas finished their baths, Sri Santosa offered them new clothes and some prasadam. Then the cooks prepared food, offered Sri Krsna and then served the prasadam to the mahantas. Then Sri Govinda Kaviraja and others with the cooks sat for taking food. After that, all of them took a little nap. Sri Iswari also took a litte nap and then got up quickly to complete her bath.

Narottama, Ramacandra, Santosa and others gladly came to meet Sri Iswari. Sri Iswari ordered them to take their seats. Narottama cherished the hope of telling something to her and she at once realised that. For his satisfaction, Sri Iswari explained the incidents that had happened at Vrndavana. She also very subtly explained the order of Sri Gopinatha. When she told them that she would start soon, Ramacandra with folded hands told her, “We hope that you will stay here for sometime but your decision has made us very much disappointed.” Iswari said, “I cannot think anything at all you better suggest me what to do.” Sri Thakura Mahasaya said slowly, “It is good to start for Khardaha within a couple of days for your presence is necessary at the time of building the image. It is not wise to waste time in relation to this type of job. It will take some time to reach Khardaha. Tomorrow I shall send a man to Khardaha.” Saying so, in the presence of Sri Jahnava Iswari, he wrote a letter and handed over to Santosa. He also wrote a letter to Sri Acarya and despatched both the letters without delay through two persons.

In the evening Sri Iswari went to the courtyard of Prabhu to observe the waving light ceremony. She remained there for a long time in listening to kirtana. Then she returned to her house Madhava Acarya and others also returned to their places. Ramacandra and others remained in the courtyard of Prabhu. After the offering of food to Prabhu, they distributed the food among the mahantas. After eating they relaxed on the beds and Sri Santosa and others remained engaged in massagingg their legs. Ramacandra with a little milk offering of Prabhu, went to Sri Iswari and requested her to drink that. The brahmana ladies who were with Sri Iswari, were given food also. While Sri Iswari went to sleep, Ramacandra returned to the temple of Prabhu. He with Govinda and others took some prasadam. Thakura Mahasaya also ate something. In an opportune moment, Thakura Mahasaya instructed Govinda Kaviraja about some duties to be done towards the Gosvamis on their journey and handed over the book Gopala Virudavali to Govinda. Govinda gave that to Ramacandra. Then all of them went to sleep.

In the dream of Narottama, Sri Lokanatha Gosvami appeared. Narottama fell on his feet and soaked his lotus feet with his tears. Lokanatha embraced Narottama and consoled him with very sweet words. Then he disappeared. Sri Thakura Mahasaya became very happy and spent the whole night in singing Sri Nama kirtana.

In the morning all the mahantas took the pleasure of discussing about Sri Vrndavana with Narottama. They spent four days in this way during which Sri Iswari took the pleasure of cooking for them. Sri Thakura Mahasaya after discussing with Ramacandra, fixed up a date of Iswari’s going. He sent Sri Govinda Kaviraja and some others to Vudhuri. Sri Santosa said, “Tomorow they will start in the morning. So let us prepare the arrangements. He instructed the priests, “Be careful in serving Prabhu and the Vaisnava’s.” Warning them in this way, he reported everything to Sri Iswari. Sri Santosa Raya prepared everything and handed over the things for Sri Iswari to Paramesvara dasa. In the morning they all took their leave of Prabhu. The priest gave them Prabhu’s garlands and clothes. They all bowed to Prabhu by lying on the ground. We do not know what Sri Iswari had prayed to Prabhu silently. She held the garland and clothes on her head.

Then she started with all from the courtyard. Sri Thakura Mahasaya bade her farewellby citing a hymn written by himself: “Gauranga Vallabhi Kanta Sri Krsna Vrajamohana. Radharamana he Radhe Radhakanta Namahastute.” Ramacandra with those who would accompany her, became very perturbed at the time of their leaving. The people of Khetari village became very perturbed also. They followed her up to the bank of Padmavati. After consoling everybody Sri Iswari got up on the boat. Sri Thakura Mahasaya ordered the boatman to cross the Padmavati quickly. The people of Khetari in a perturbed mind returned to their village.

After crossing the river, they quickly came to Vudhuri. The people of that village came running to see the mahantas entering into their village. The mahantas became very satisfied with them and blessed them. Sri Iswari with all went to stay in a lonely place. Sri Govinda Kaviraja ordered the cooks to start cooking. Then they offered food to Krsna and kept aside the prasadam after sometime. Sri Iswari completed her cooking very briefly and offered them with milk to Krsna. Then she ate very gladly. After taking another bath, she came to take her seat. The cooks distributed prasadam among the mahantas. Then Sri Thakura Mahasaya with the rest of all ate very gladly.

On that day, Sri Iswari became very happy and negotiated the marriage of Varu Gangadasa who was a very apathetic type of man and had no intention to marry. But due to the order of Sri Iswari, he had to marry. Syama Raya, which was a beautiful image in looking, appeared in the dream of Sri Iswari and told her, “Now hand me over to Varu Gangadasa.” Being ordered in her dream, Sri Iswari became very happy and did that what he had said. She arranged the food offering to Syama Raya and a great festival took place on the next day. We do not know what she had instructed Varu Gangadasa but we can see that since that day, he was engaged in the service of Syama Raya and began to settle at Vudhuri.

Sri Iswari with all came to Kantakanagara. Sri Yadunandana and others came forward to receive them and brought them in the temple of Prabhu at the time of Prabhu’s just going to bed. All of them became very happy to see Gauracandra and then went to an arranged house. Sri Thakura Mahasaya and other also were given beautiful but solitary houses. They went to take bath in the Ganges.

Sri Yadunandana sent a message to Yajigrama and Sri Acarya Thakura with his men came quickly to that place. Then all of them ate prasadam. They became very glad to see Acarya. Srinivasa bowed to the feet of all the mahantas who affectionately embraced him. They asked Acarya about his well being. The persons who came with Srinivasa, bowed to the feet of the mahantas. The cooks prepared the food and offered Krsna. After that they kept aside the prasada. Sri Iswari cooked quickly in brief and offered to Krsna. Then she ate something and after taking another bath, she requested the mahantas to eat. The mahantas along with Srinivasa and others ate most gladly. Then Srinivasa went to Sri Iswari and they remained engaged in talking to each other. Then Srinivasa went to the house of Narottama. Sri Govinda Kaviraja reported everything to Srinivasa what the Gosvamis had instructed him. Ramacandra Kaviraja gave the book Gopala Virudavali to Acarya who held it on his head.

He with all the mahantas observed the ceremony of waving light before Prabhu. They they started sankirtana. Sri Jahnava became overwhelmed to see the beauty of Prabhu. After a long time, she returned to her house. Sri Gauranga also was led to the bed to sleep. Srinivasa and the mahantas also went to their places to sleep.

At the end of the night Sri Gopala Bhatta appeared in the dream of Srinivasa who at once fell on his feet and washed the lotus feet of his religious master by his tears. Sri Bhatta Gosvami embraced him and told Srinivasa sweetly, “I am always with you. You are my principal disciple in birth after birth.” Saying so he put his feet on the head of Srinivasa and then disappeared. Srinivasa in the memory of Sri Gopala Bhatta, got up on his bed and sang the glory of Sri Krsna Caitanya.

In the morning he finished his morning duties and bathing in the Ganges. He visited the temple of Sri Gauranga and the place of Sri Bharati. At the time of departing all of them became perturbed with misery. Srinivasa consoled Sri Yadunandana and others. Then with Sri Iswari Srinivasa came to Yajigrama. Acarya Thakura sent a message to Khanda which made the people of that place mad in joy.

Sri Raghunandana came to Yajigrama and observed the feet of Sri Jahnava. He stayed at Yajigrama for a long time during which he became restless in listening to the incidents of Vraja. Again with Srinivasa, he went to meet Sri Iswari and told her mildly, “I have heard everything from Srinivasa. There should be no delay to go to Khardaha. Tomorrow, do come to Sri Khanda. I have to go now.” Saying so, after bowing to her feet, Sri Raghunandana returned to Khanda happily. He collected all necessary things for her service and cleaned the house for her. The people of Khanda began to wait eagerly for Sri Iswari.

There at Yajigrama, Sri Iswari with others quickly finished their eating. Acarya read out from the devotional books for some time and they started sankirtana. In the morning, Sri Iswari with others went to Sri Khanda. Quickly they moved to the courtyard of Prabhu and became glad to observe the beauty of Prabhu.

They became overwhelmed with emotion to see the places where Nityananda Prabhu had danced, where He had drank honey in a trance of love, where Nitai had observed the dance of Narahari. After enjoying the pleasure of those places, they returned to their houses. On that day they quickly finished their cooking and after offering food to Prabhu, they finished their eating quickly.

Knowing the mind of Sri Iswari, Sri Raghunandana started beautiful kirtana and in the flood of sankirtana, everyone began to swim happily. They began to roll on the ground forgetting their own entities. Playing of musical instruments was as beautiful as dancing. They began to sing the glory of singing, dancing and playing of instruments in that way. In a trance of emotion, they spent the whole night in singing kirtana. Due to the wish of Prabhu they stopped at last and went to their houses to take rest.

In the morning they did their morning duties. Sri Iswari hastily finished her bath, cooked for Prabhu and then fed all of them by her own hand. Who knows how they had enjoyed the eating on that day? Sri Raghunandana became overwhelmed with emotion observing the affection of Sri Iswari towards them. The people of Sri Khanda were greatly moved by the high qualities of the associates of Sri Iswari. Sri Iswari again took her bath and sat among Srinivasa and others. She told him, “From here, we should move to Khetari. Tomorrow morning, we should start for Khardaha. I shall send a messege from there soon.” Saying in this way, she came to the courtyard of Prabhu and observed the evening waving light. Then all of them started Sri Nama kirtana.

When all of them went to their houses Sri Raghunandana and his men met Sri Iswari and told her softly, “We heard that tomorow morning you will start from here. We don’t dare to forbid you to go now. As you are independent one, we are seared to request you that we will be obliged if you please visit our place from time to time. There is no one so shameless creature like me. My worthless life is still alive though it is always burning in the fire of separation.” Hearing these humble utterances of Sri Raghunandana, Sri Iswari could not check her tears. After a long time Sri Iswari and Raghunandana pacified themselves. Raghunandana distributed prasadam to everybody though they were not at all hungry. He handed over the things what were for Sri Iswari to Sri Madhava Acarya. As it was already late for going to bed, they hastily went to their houses.

In the morning, apathetic scene occurred there when all of them began to say goodbye to one another. Sri Iswari took the same course to go to Khardaha.

Here Sri Thakura Raghunandana at Sri Khanda used to be very glad to get the company of Acarya and his associates. Sri Acarya stayed that day at Sri Khanda. In the morning he went back to Yajigrama. After spending 2-3 days at Yajigrama, Acarya went to Nadia with two persons. His Navadvipa tour had been discussed in Bhakti-ratnakara.

From there, he came back to Yajigrama and spent that day in sankirtana. On the next day, he started in the morning and within 4-5 days came to Vudhuri. He ordered Sri Govinda Kaviraja and others to stay at Vudhuri and he himself came to Khetari on the next day. The people of Khetari came to meet him. He with Thakura Mahasaya talked to them very sweetly. All of them came to the courtyard of Gauranga and observed Him. In the meantime, a letter from Khardaha arrived. Being relieved to know about the well-being of Khardaha, he sent a reply with the news of well being of Khetari to Khardaha. After going back to their house, Acarya and Thakura Mahasaya remained engaged in discussing about Krsna. We do not know what Acarya, Thakura Mahasaya and Ramacandra had discussed alone. Sri Acarya stayed there for 15 days and then went to Kancanagaria via Vudhuri. There they stayed for 5 days and then went to Yajigrama.

At Yajigrama, Sri Acarya remained engaged in teaching his disciples all the devotional scriptures. Who will dare to interfere in his discussions? The debate-loving persons used to flee from that place. Students from distant places used to come to him to study. Acarya used to visit many places as a professor of devotional scriptures due to the favor of Sri Caitanya. Sinners and heretics due to the favor of Acarya began to sing the glory of Sri Krsna Caitanya.

Sri Thakura Narottama who was an ocean of qualities and a non-detachable? feature of Sri Acarya, began to spend his days happily with Ramacandra who was more favorite to him than his own life. Sri Thakura Mahasaya and Ramacandra remained engaged in teaching Srimad Bhagavata and the books of the Gosvamis to their students. On listening to the analysis of devotional scriptures by Narottama, the believers in karma and jnana began to criticise Thakura Mahasaya by saying, “Being a Vaisnava, he is criticising karma and jnana.” But even the brahmanas of distant places used to come to Khetari to study Gosvami books along with the Vaisnavas and then began to teach others.

One day, Narottama with Ramacandra had been discussing the topic of Krsna. In the meantime, a distinguished brahmana came to Narottama and told him in crying, “Oh being proud, I told so many things against you to many students but on that particular day I had criticised you, I became a prey to the disease of leprosy. I took many medicines and performed many rituals, but alas, apart from cure, the disease began to aggravate day by day. I thought of commiting suicide by jumping into the Ganges. In my dream, Devi Bhagavati apeared and angrily told me, “You will face a severe misfortune. Being proud, you have insulted Narottama by calling him a sudra. You are still a fool after studying so many scriptures. He who has taken Narottama as an ordinary man, has no chance of averting misfortune in any life. If he forgives you, then you will get rid of misfortune.” Saying so, she disappeared. In the morning, I have come straight to you. First of all, I became afraid of facing you but a brahmana in my way told me that you are ever merciful. I looked at you from a distance but your merciful feature at once has cooled my eyes as if I have got back my life. Oh lord, be merciful to me. I am taking refuge to your feet.” Saying so, the brahmana began to cry loudly. He fell on the ground to touch the feet of Narottama.

Sri Thakura Mahasaya said, “You have done nothing to humiliate me.” The brahmana said, “Do put your feet on my head, then a sinner’s mind will be pacified.” Narottama thinking of Sri Krsna Caitanya, embraced the brahmana. The brahmana being very glad took the dust of Narottama’s feet and began to dance by raising his hands. After a long time, he became quiet but by that time his disease had gone and he became purified at long last. The feeling of love and devotion arose in the mind of the brahmana which led him to think, “This cure seems to me very dangerous. I hope I could get the disease again for this cure may create pride in my mind.” So this thought made him a Vaisnava and his followers became Vaisnavas too.

These news spread all over the village which made all the brahmanas scared. They began to warn one another in this way, “Be careful in your behaviour about Narottama. Don’t call Narottama a low caste person.” Someone said, “Being proud of our brahmanism, we have failed to acknowledge a jewel like Narottama.” Someone said, “There is no question of being a brahmana or a high caste person. Without his mercy, it is not possible to identify him.” Someone said, “Narottama is himself an abode of mercy. He by his own quality can save the sinners.” Someone said, “So many qualities do not belong to an ordinary man. He is a man only in appearance. He is an incarnation to save the beings from damnation.” The brahmana warned his followers by singing the glory of Narottama. Narottama’s qualities were above any discussion. He used to visit Yajigrama from time to time to meet Acarya.

I have elaborately discussed the meeting of Narottama and Acarya with Vira Hamvira in Bhakti-ratnakara. So be patient in listening to Narottama Vilasa by Narahari.

THE TENTH VILASA

Glory to Gaura, Nityananda, Advaita and their associates. Be kind to this poor soul. Glory to the merciful listeners.

Now listen, Sri Rama and Sri Raghunandana, two disciples of Acarya, came back from Vrndavana. They reported gladly to Thakura Mahasaya about the well-being of Vraja. They told excitedly, “How can we describe the beauty of Radha Thakurani sent by Sri Jahnava Iswari? She had created a magnificent glory by sitting in the left side of Gopinatha who Himself had ordered the Gosvamis to do that. They had held a great festival on this occassion that we had seen by our own eyes. The Vaisnavas of Vraja had become mad in joy.” Hearing this incident, all of them became very glad and Ramacandra requested those two to take their baths quickly.

Sri Thakura Mahasaya with Ramacandra went gladly to take their bath in Padmavati. On their way, they saw two brahmana boys were coming wtih many cubs of goats, sheeps and buffaloes. Looking at them, Sri Mahasaya told Ramacandra that these two boys had fine devotional qualities for worshipping Krsna. Ramacandra began to discuss different scriptures in the presence of those two boys. The boys on hearing the discussion from some distance began to tell to each other, “Most probably these two Vaisnavas are Sri Thakura Mahasaya and Kaviraja. We have already heard about their glory. Today is an auspicious day that we can meet them now.” Saying so, they put aside the cubs and came near to Ramacandra and Thakura Mahasaya with a heart swinging like a pendulum. Thakura Mahasaya sweetly asked them, “Who are you? Whose son s you are?” One boy told, “I am Harirama and he is my younger brother, Ramakrsna. Sivai Acarya is our father. He used to spend a lot of money on the occassion of Bhavani worship. Balarama Kaviraja is a good physician. Being ordered by our father, we came here to buy these cubs. My father believes that sacrifice of these cubs before the goddess will grant him the happiness of heaven.” After saying so, he called on his men and ordered them to cross Padmavati leaving those cubs here. Being ordered by Harirama Acarya, they crossed the river without the cubs and these two brahmana boys. Harirama told Thakura Mahasaya, “True, we came here to buy the cubs, but now our visions have become cleaned by your teachings. Now be favorable to us and accept us and give once again the proof of your glory.” Saying so the two brothers fell on the ground to touch his feet.

Observing the humble disposition of these two brothers, both Thakura Mahasaya and Ramacandra became very much perturbed and embraced them. After taking bath, they took those boys to the temple of Prabhu most happily. That day was an auspicious day and Sri Kaviraja initiated Harirama. Thakura Mahasaya intitiated Ramakrsna Acarya. Harirama and Ramakrsna were very fortunate because at once they could get the feeling of the unattachable identity of Ramacandra and Narottama. They fell prostrate on the feet of their religious masters who empowered their disciples to a great extent. They dedicated their disciples to the feet of Radha-Krsna and Caitanya. They helped their disciples to know Sri Bhakti Sidhantas thoroughly. Harirama and Ramakrsna became mad in the juices of love and devotion.

On the eleventh day i.e. the day after Vijaya Dasami (the tenth day of the worship of goddess Bhavani), they asked for their farewell from their religious masters and came back to Goyasa village from Khetari. They first of all got Balarama Kaviraja and spent that night in his house. They told everything to Balarama who is turn reported everything about their father. In the morning they became face to face with their father. On seeing his sons, Sivai became fire with anger and shouted at them by saying, “Oh fools, which one among the scriptures has said that the Vaisnavas are superior to brahamanas? By offending Bhagavati, you have spoilt your lives. What type of Vaisnava he is that he made to accept defeat and humiliation before the society of scholars? I know I must be successful due the favor of Durga towards me. Thus further, he won’t dare to do this.” Harirama became furious and cried out again and again, “Let the Panditas come here and let me see their powers. They have to defeat me first otherwise all their shoutings will be proven fake.” On hearing the utterances of his son, Sivai Acarya became impatient in anger and forced his son to appear before the Pandita Society. Harirama, proud like a lion, refuted all the explanations of the Panditas and established the superiority of devotion. He proved that the Vedas have said that the Vaisnavas are worshipped by all. The Panditas being defeated from all respects, began to stare at Harirama. Someone said, “How can he know all the scriptures?” Another one replied, “From the favor of Vaisnavas, do you know the glory of Ramacandra and Narottama? These two brothers had obtained favor from those great Vaisnavas. No one can defeat them.” The Panditas became ashamed and went back to their house after saying, “The Vaisnavas have power, no doubt.” Out of blind anger, Sivai called forth Murari who was a world conquering scholar of Mithila. He was so proud of his knowledge that he used to look upon the other scholars like grass under his feet. He came with many students and supporters. Balarama Kaviraja very easily defeated him in the debate. Being defeated, he said, “It is impossible for me to grasp the limit of glory of the Vaisnavas.” Saying so, he distributed all his belongings among others and took self-banishment by not going back to his own country. He accepted the life of a beggar. Sivai being ashamed, reached to the dying condition. He became very sorry for insulting the Vaisnavas. He was rightly served by goddess Bhagavati.

The news of the people being converted into Vaisnavism spread all over the countries. The Vaisnavas became very glad for this. Harirama and Ramakrsna Acarya gladly engaged themselves in nama-sankirtana. They became most apathetic towards material life after getting the valuable wealth like devotion. They began to stay with Balarama Kaviraja being always engaged in singing the glory of Sri Krsna Caitanya. One day, on some personal purpose, the two brothers came to Gamvila village on the bank of Suradhuni (Ganga). That place had many scholars among whom Ganganarayana Cakravarti was the foremost one. He was a man of devotional disposition and had conquered the desire for material pleasure. He was a good teacher. Secretly he had been watching Harirama and Ramakrsna and began to think after observing their transcendental brightness, “They were not like this before, but now what a change has come in them. Kaviraja and Sri Thakura Mahasaya had favored them for which they have become great Vaisnavas and great scholars in all scriptures. Many scholars had accepted defeat from them. Being ashamed the world-conqueror scholar became a beggar. These two brothers are very fortunate. He who had criticised Thakura Mahasaya, had been rightly served by Bhagavati. I, the worst brahmana, being proud of my knowledge had neglected him. The only way of my survival is to get favor from him. It is known that he is very merciful.”

Thinking in this way, Ganganarayana began to weep and to lament in this way, “There is no religion above Vaisnavism and worthless person like me get no interest in that religion. Fie, fie to my life. Without worshipping Krsna, I had spent the whole life on trifle things. Oh, lord Narottama, help me to obtain love and devotion. I am taking refuge to your lotus feet.” In lamentation he spent most of the night. At late night, he fell asleep and dreamt of Thakura Mahasaya in shinning glory and full of mercy. He was telling him smilingly, “You are my servant, don’t lament. All your desires will be fulfilled. Tomorrow, at the time of your bath in the Ganges, you will see me. I have come here from Khetari. That time I shall talk to you.” As he disappeared, Ganganarayana became very sad.

In the morning, after quickly finishing his daily duties, he came on the bank of Ganga and sat there in silent prayer. Harirama and Ramakrsna came to that place. Cakravarty greeted them very humbly and told them, “Please do stay here for a few days with me. If I am fortunate enough to get Prabhu here, please tell him about me.” Most fortunately, Mahasaya with some disciples came to the bank of the Ganges. Harirama and Ganganarayana told, “Look, prabhu by chance has come to take bath in the Ganges.” Ganganarayana became highly satisfied because he found Thakura Mahasaya just the same, he had seen in his dream. Cakravarty asked Harirama about the identities of the Vaisnavas coming with Narottama. Harirama helped Ganganarayana to get the identities of them and moved forward to Narottama to give the identity of Ganganarayana. With a smile, Thakura Mahasaya said, “Bring Ganganarayana to me soon.”

Ganganarayana came with Harirama and fell on the feet of Narottama who in a trance of love embraced Ganganarayana. In a sweet voice, he asked Ganganarayana, “Well, gentleman, won’t the other brahmanas mind for this type of your behaviour? Ganganarayana said, ‘Oh my lord, if your favor goes to the poor soul, he never cares for those devotionless brahmanas.” Saying so he worhipped the feet of Ramacandra. Ganganarayana was introduced to everybody. The people out of astonishment whispered to one another, “We found him in Gamvila many times but what a surprise, he is now a completely changed person.” Someone said, “He who was always proud of his knowledge, now how he has became so humble? Someone said, “How this type of devotion arose in him? It was totally imposible for him.” Someone said, “Oh brothers, I think that everything has become posible due to the presence of this Mahasaya.” Then everyone began to praise the fortune of Ganganarayana who being a staunch brahmana, had become a devout Vaisnava.

Anticipating that Ganganarayana was trying to tell something to him, Thakura Mahasaya told him, “Don’t think anything else. After taking bath, I shall go to Vudhuri and tomorrow I shall go back to Khetari for I have some important business to do in the temple of Gauranga. You should stay here today with Harirama and Ramakrsna and tomorrow you all should go to Vudhuri. There you can meet Karnapura and others. On the next morning you all should go to Khetari quickly.” Saying so, after a quick bath, Mahasaya went to Vudhuri with others. Ganganarayana after his bath went to home with Harirama and Ramakrsna and stayed at Gamvila for that day. In the early morning they went to Vudhuri gladly and stayed in the house of Sri Govinda Kaviraja. Divyasimha, son of Govinda became astonished to observe the devotional efforts Ganganarayana. There, Karnapura Kaviraja and others were also present. In the morning they hastily came to Khetari and observed the image of Sri Gauranga. Ganganarayana prayed before Prabhu for the fulfilment of his desire. That day they spent in the pleasure of sankirtana.

On the next morning, after finishing bath and daily duties, Thakura Mahasaya thought that today was the most auspicious day to initiate Ganganarayana. So did he and dedicated Ganganarayana to the lotus feet of Sri Krsna Caitanya. Narottama, who was an incarnation of devotion, empowered Ganganarayana with his own power. Being overwhelmed with joy, Ganganarayana could not check his tears and lay prostrate on the lotus feet of Narottama who took him to his bosom. Narottama dedicated Ganganarayana to Ramacandra. Ganganarayana worshipped the feet of Ramacandra, Govinda Kaviraja and others. All the Vaisnavas there became very happy. Ganganarayana, the genius of all scriptures, began to study the Gosvami books. He began to swim continuously in the stream of happiness derived from sankirtana. In this way, Ganganarayana achieved some extra high qualities of love and devotion.

Jagannatha Acarya who was a devout worshipper of Bhagavati, was ordered by her to take refuge to the lotus feet of Narottama. She told him, “Without worshipping Krsna, life is a futile one. Go and touch the feet of Narottama who will give you salvation.” Being ordered by her, he in the next morning came to Khetari and fell on the feet of Thakura Mahasaya. With tears he told Thakura Mahasaya, “Being ordered by Bhagavati, I have come to you. Now I am at your feet. Oh lord, please initiate me and save me from damnation.” Hearing this humble confession, Thakura Narottama initiated that brahmana. In this way, Narottama got many disciples. For this incident, some became happy while some became angry.

There was a king in a distant place, named Narasimha who was a great patron of scholar brahmanas. One of those brahmanas angrily complained to the king, “There is no one to think about religion which is in stake now. Narottama dasa, son of Krsnananda Datta, had become a Vaisnava and now he is initiating the brahmanas. I don’t know what type of a magician he is in doing all these miracles. If you say that he is a scholar, then my opinion is this is his false pride before the ignorants. Will he dare to face us? Let us go to his place and let see the fun. I know he must make haste to flee from there. If you can accomplish this, you will be praised by all the countries for keeping the prestige and superiority of the brahmanas. The king is the saviour and the only judge due to the order of God. Otherwise the brahmana class will be perished.”

On hearing this, the king made arrangements to go to Khetari with others among whom there was Rupanarayana also. The professors with many books started proudly. The king with his men halted at Kumarapura village near Khetari. Here, on getting the news of the king’s coming, Mahasaya told Ramacandra slowly, “We have to face the professors and I know a great debate will occur.” Ramacandra smiled and said, “They can be defeated very easily and will come to fall on your feet.” Thus Ramacandra and Ganganarayana came to Kumarapura and took the guises of two shopkeepers. One of them became the seller of betel leaf in shop to buy betel leaf. When he asked the price for betel leaf, the seller replied in sanskrit. The student accepted his defeat. The seller said, “You are a fool, you know nothing. If you want to keep your prestige, go and bring your teacher.”

The student being ashamed informed everything to his professor and said, “That young sellers of Khetari, the place of Narottama, are great scholars. If you want to defeat Narottama, first defeat these young sellers. Otherwise stop going to Khetari.” Hearing this the Pandits became furious and ordered the student to guide them to that place. They began debate on different scriptures. Gradually Narasimha, Rupanarayana and many people came to that place to witness the battle of scriptures. The seller men began to refute one by one all the explanations given by the Pandita in a very polite way. Thus very easily the Panditas were defeated by the sellers. Someone said, “When the Panditas had come here they were just like lions. But now after defeat they have become dogs.” Then the people began to sing the glory of Thakura Mahasaya.

These hearsays made the king nervous. He asked Rupanarayana very slowly, “What is the way out now”? Rupanarayana said, “Vaisnavism is superior to all religions. Humiliating the Vaisnavas leads to the path of hell. Let us go and take refuge to his feet. Otherwise there is no way out from damnation.” Narasimha said, “I am also thinking so. Let us go quickly.” Rupanarayana said, “Stay here today. Tomorrow start with your men.” This news spread all over that tomorrow the king with his men would go to Khetari. The condition of the professors was undoubtedly most miserable. They could not face the king due to shame. They confined themselves in a lonely place. They used to tell one another about the forthcoming situation they had to face tomorrow.

Here after defeating the professors, the two shopkeepers started for Khetari. Ramacandra distributed the betel leaves among the poor and Ganganarayana also distributed his earthen materials among the poor villagers. Being satisfied, they returned to Khetari and reported everything to Thakura Mahasaya. Here King Narasimha began to think silently whether a wicked person like him would get the mercy of Thakura Mahasaya. In extreme lamentation, he told Rupanarayana, “My life will be totally futile unless I get his mercy.” Certain invisible one throw the words, “He will forgive by his own forgiveful nature.” The king became very much perturbed to hear this and began to wait for the morning in a swinging heart.

How pity was the condition of the professors. The most proud professor among them fell asleep at late night and saw in his dream goddess Bhagavati with a sword in her hand. She told in an angry voice, “Oh you rogue, how futile is your whole life study. You will go to hell as you have criticised the Vaisnavas. I shall be satisfied if I sever you head. Oh wicked soul, I don’t know how to give you a lesson. Only Narottama can save you from damnation.” Then with blood-shot eyes, the goddess vanished. Waking up from sleep, the professor began to tremble in fear. He awakened others with a shout and told others, “Luckily I am saved. Bhagavati came to kill me as I had underestimated Narottama. Now only he can save me from the sufferings of the hell.” In the morning, he went to report everything to the king. The king told, “I had forbade you before to criticise Narottama as an ordinary man. Is it posible for a human being to perform all these transcendental deeds? Sri Thakura Mahasaya is respected person to us all.” Saying so, he consoled the pandita.

After taking their baths, the king with all the professors started for Khetari on foot. Reaching Khetari, they hastily went to the courtyard of Gauranga. Being very humble, the king with others lay prostrate on the ground to bow to Sri Gauranga. Ramacandra, the most wise person, with Govinda and others, took great care of them. All of them became very eager to meet Sri Thakura Mahasaya who had been sitting in a lonely place. After a while, Sri Thakura Mahasaya came to that place and everyone had been observing his beauty. King Narasimha and Rupanarayana advanced forward first towards Narottama and said humbly, “Oh lord, how can we introduce ourselves? We are full materialists and wicked persons. We are dedicating ourselves to you but we are afraid of telling anything to you. Please kindly initiate us and fulfil our desires.” Saying so, they fell on his feet with tears in their eyes. Observing their perturbed condition, Thakura Mahasaya very affectionately consoled them and embraced them. Narasimha and Rupanarayana fell on the ground to touch his feet and at once all their agonies were vanished and they got extreme peace in their minds.

The king brought that illustrious professor to Narotama and said, “He is the head of the professors. His pride has gone and now forgive and favor him.” That brahmana stood before Mahasaya and sorrowfully reported about the anger of the goddess. He fell on the ground in crying and sought the refuge of Narottama. Sri Thakura Mahasaya, the image of mercy, favored him by embracing him. Then Ramacandra pacified him by lifting him from the ground. Then all of them became devotees of Krsna Caitanya.

Thakura Mahasaya with all of them came to the courtyard of Prabhu and observed the waving light ceremony of Prabhu. Sri Santosa Raya most heartily took them to a house and brought many things for their eating. He most humbly requested them to cook their food but Narasimha and others begged prasadam from Santosa Raya who most gladly granted this proposal. So Narasimha, Rupanarayana and others went to that place where Sri Thakura Mahasaya with his followers had been sitting. How can I describe the divine pleasure they got in eating prasadam? Then they spent the whole day in extreme pleasure.

On the next day, in an auspicious moment all of them took initiation from Sri Thakura Narottama who dedicated them to the feet of Prabhu. Rupanarayana and others stayed there for a few days during which they began to study the Gosvami books. In due course of time all of them became possessors of love and devotion and extremely interested in doing sankirtana. They used to enjoy the songs written by Sri Govinda Kaviraja. They used to listen to Srimad Bhagavata from Ganganarayana Cakravarty. In this way, they forgot the difference between day and night. He who once came to Khetari forgot to go elsewhere leaving this type of divine pleasure. King Narasimha and Rupanarayana hurriedly went to their country to bring the queen Rupamala who was a devoted wife and a lady of beautiful disposition. Thakura Mahasaya became very happy to observe her beautiful nature and gave her initiation. Rupamala became so happy that she sweared to take one lakh of Harinama in a day. Everyone began to sing the glory of Thakura Mahasaya.

Haricandra Raya was a dacoit. He heard about the qualitites of Thakura Mahasaya and came to take refuge to his feet. Thakura Mahasaya saved him from damnation by giving him initiation. After initiation, he was renamed as Haridasa and became the possessor of precious gem-like devotion. He gave up? his Zamindari of Jalapantha. Everyone became astonished to see the change in a dacoit. The people began to whisper, “Sri Thakura Mahasaya is a man of transcendental qualitites by which he subdued a dacoit very easily. But Canda Raya is the most notorious of all dacoits. If he can overcome Canda Raya, the whole country can heave a sigh of relief.” Someone said, “Don’t worry, Canda Raya will soon be favored and with all his men will be great Vaisnavas. Due to that favor, he must give up his dacoity.”

In the meantime, one brahmana came to them to inform about the rescue of Canda Raya by Thakura Mahasaya. Canda Raya was a terror before but now his only appearance could give pleasure to the eyes. The brahmana further said, “I have seen in my own eyes that Canda Raya and his men are dancing in sankirtana on the courtyard of Prabhu.” Hearing this miraculous incident, the people in a crowd went to see Canda Raya whom they found lying on the dust of the ground and his whole body was trembling with emotion. Everyone got relief for averting the tyranny of Canda Raya.

In the meantime, some unkown persons with arms and weapons came to that place and asked the people how Canda Raya had become a Vaisnava. The people explained the whole event in nutshell. Canda Raya with his followers were devotees of goddess Bhagavati. Canda Raya was a powerful Zamindar and the head of the dacoits. Goddess Bhagavati became so angry upon him that she punished him with the help of a brahmana ghost. When again she found that Canda’s life was at stake, she ordered him to take refuge to the feet of Narottama. Thakura Mahasaya favored him and rescued him from damnation. Canda Raya became a most humble Vaisnava.

Taking advantage of his weakness, the Yavana king tried to torture him. But Canda Raya did not bother about his pains and remained loyal to the feet of Narottama. The Yavana king brought a mad elephant to kill Canda Raya but the elephant fled away instead of moving forward towards Canda Raya. Being highly disturbed the king ordered to imprison Canda Raya. Instead of being sad, Canda Raya thought gladly that he had been rightly served for his misdeeds. Someone suggested him to cite hymns praising the goddess but Canda Raya refused to cite any other hymns that hymns of Lord Krsna. Observing his sincerity, Prabhu became so glad that due to him the Yavana king became so afraid that he released Raya after begging to him. He came to Khetari to meet Thakura Mahasaya.

Hearing all these incidents, the unknown persons, throwing out their weapons, laid prostrate on the ground before Thakura Mahasaya. Thakura Mahasaya asked them sweetly about their particulars. They replied in tears, “We are dacoits of Bengal and the most disgracing thing is that we are brahmanas and Canda Raya is our leader. We used to do dacoity on the river. This time we had come here to consult with Raya but we heard about the episode of Canda Raya from the people. Now we have changed our minds. Observing your lotus feet from distance, a sudden change came to our mind. We are wicked and robbers. Please save us from damnation.” Now they began to cry miserably. In the meantime Canda Raya came to that place and all of them became very happy to see him. Canda Raya very humbly greeted them all. After a few days, Thakura Mahasaya initiated them all.

If anyone listens to these episodes, can get rid of damnation. So be attentive to Narottama Vilasa by Narahari.

THE ELEVENTH VILASA

Glory to Gaura, Nityananda, Advaita and their associates favor the poor soul. Glory to the merciful listeners.

Now listen to me. Kaviraja Thakura and Thakura Mahasaya wrote two separate letters in which they enclosed the songs written by Sri Govinda to Vrndavana very carefully. In reply from Vrndavana, they got the news of the well-being of that place. Thus gladly they conveyed this news to Yajigrama. At Yajigrama, Acarya with his students and followers used to spend the days in discussing about devotional scriptures. On knowing the efforts of Sri Narottama by which he had favored and saved many heretics and wicked dacoits, pleased Acarya to a great extent. He at once decided to go to Khetari.

In the meantime, someone informed that Virabhadra had come to their place. Being delighted, Acarya Thakura advanced forward to meet Viracandra who on seeing Acarya coming towards him, got down from his palanquin quickly. Acarya and his followers fell on the ground to show their respect to Virabhadra who at once embraced Acarya and asked about his well being. Viracandra started walking slowly with Acarya by holding the hand of Acarya.

Acarya very humbly asked Viracandra Prabhu, “I thought one day at Khardaha that I will go to Khetari via Yajigrama. With my followers I had already visited the places of Nadia. Then I went to Sri Khanda and from there quickly I have come here.” Saying so, he entered into a house and took his seat. The visit of Prabhu so delighted Acarya that it seemed to him as if the actual owner had come to his own place. Draupadi Iswari and Sri Gauranga-priya, wives of Acarya, bowed to the feet of Viracandra Prabhu. They washed the feet of Prabhu with cold water. The eldest son of Acarya, who had been named by Sri Jiva Gosvami as Vrndavana, was a boy of very beautiful intellect. Vrndavana with his two brothers, Radhakrsna and Sri Gitagovinda fell on the feet of Prabhu who blessed them very affectionately. He put his feet on the heads of the three respectively. The three daughters of Acarya, Hemalata, Krsnapriya and Sri Kancanalata were very devotional minded. They also bowed to the feet of Prabhu Viracandra who blessed them too. Prabhu asked about their well being very sweetly and the three girls spontaneously dedicated themselves to the feet of Prabhu. After sometime, Prabhu with his followers went to take bath.

Here, the wives of Acarya quickly took their bath and started cooking for Prabhu various items of food. They decorated the rice plate with scented rice and other items. One wise disciple of Acarya offered food first to Salagrama Candra and also to that Govardhana Sila given by Prabhu Nityananda to Viracandra. The two Thakuranis decorated the rice plates for two Prabhus. After the eating of Govardhana Sila and Sri Vansivadana, the priest offered the water for washing mouth. Then he offered betel leaves to them. After that they went to bed.

Here after coming back from the river, Viracandra and his followers took their seats for eating by sitting in the courtyard of Gauranga. Prabhu Viracandra told Sri Acarya to sit with him and to take food. Acarya Thakura said humbly, “It is not fair to sit with you for eating for I want to eat after you all.” Hearing this, Prabhu caught Acarya’s hand and said with a smile, “There is no one to blame you if you sit by my side and take food with me.” Acarya was unable to violate Prabhu’s request. Thus he sat with Prabhu Viracandra.

Everyone became charmed to observe the beauty of all the great Vaisnavas sitting in a row. Banana leaves were placed before them and Prabhu ordered to serve the food. Then wives of Acarya began to serve food. Sridasa, Gokulananda and Vyasa decorated the plates filled with bowls full of delicious curries. All of them with Viracandra ate most happily. After eating, they washed their mouths and took betel leaves. Prabhu took rest a little and then spent the rest of day and night in discussing about Krsna.

In the morning, Sri Viracandra with Acarya started for Khetari most gladly. All of them reached Vudhuri via Kantakanagara. Govinda and others getting the news of their coming, had been waiting on the path. Viracandra Prabhu with Acarya and others met Govinda and others on the way. Govinda most gladly took them to the house. Viracandra and Acarya became very pleased to get beautiful resting places and delicious food. They stayed two days at Vudhuri. All the Vaisnavas of that place came to meet Prabhu, Acarya and others. After taking bath in Padmavati River, all of them crossed the river and most happily moved towards Khetari.

On knowing the coming of Prabhu, Thakura Mahasaya ordered his cooks to prepare various items of food. He collected different kinds of fruits and sweets. He ordered his men to clean the houses. Then he with his men stood on the road and waited for Prabhu. Prabhu with his followers appeared just like the million moons to soothe the heat of the sun. Thakura Mahasaya advanced forward and bowed to the feet of Viracandra. Prabhu embraced Narottama who could not hold his tears and touched the feet of Prabhu again and again. Acarya Thakura and Sri Thakura Mahasaya took Prabhu to the courtyard and temple of Gauranga. They observed the images of Gauranga, Vallabhikanta, Sri Vrajamohana, Radhakrsna, Radhakanta, Sri Radharamana. Viracandra could not control his tears after observing the beautiful images. He fell on the ground again and again to bow to the images. When he checked his emotion, the priest gave him the offered garland of Prabhu. Acarya Thakura then very carefully took him to the house. The priest also gave offered garlands to all the Vaisnavas who came with Viracandra. The people of Khetari came to see Prabhu Viracandra. On their way back to their houses, one said to another, “Nityananda is Balarama himself and Prabhu Virabhadra is his son and is an abode of qualities. His beautiful feature can increase the thirst of the eyes to see him again.” Someone said, “We are very fortunate to have the chance of seeing him most easily.” Someone said, “All these have become possible only due to Sri Thakura Mahasaya.”

Here Viracandra took his seat with his followers in the beautiful house. Acarya Thakura told very sweetly to Viracandra Prabhu, “Your food is ready because it has been prepared before your coming to the house.” Prabhu took out his Govardhana Sila from his cloth bag and offered food before Him. After His eating, he again put Him in his cloth bag. Then varieties of prasadam came from the temple. Prabhu told Acarya, “Now I am hungry. So let us not waste time.”

He with all his followers sat down to eat. Harirama, Ramakrsna, Ganganarayana, Sri Govinda Cakravarti and others began to serve various items of food to Viracandra and other Vaisnavas. Due to the superb taste of all items, Prabhu and others ate too much. Then they washed their mouths. After that Acarya Thakura with his followers began to discuss about Radhakrsna and Caitanya and in this way they spent the whole day and night.

In the morning, Prabhu took his bath. Then Sri Santosa stood before Prabhu with a beautiful cloth in his hand and requested Prabhu to wear it. He also offered new clothes to all the Vaisnava followers of Prabhu. Prabhu then decorated his Govardhana Sila with flowers, sandalpaste and Tulasi and offered food before Him. Then he distributed the prasadam among all. After them Prabhu ate himself. With the permission of Prabhu, Acarya and Thakura Mahasaya decided to start sankirtana.

On hearing the announcement of sankirtana, people from every corner of Khetari came running to throng all around the courtyard. In the afternoon, after Viracandra’s coming with his associates to the courtyard of Gauranga, the Utthvapana arati ceremony took place. The priest gave him the garland and sadal offerings. Acarya delightfully decorated Prabhu with sandalpaste and flower garlands and began to weep in joy to observe the beauty of Prabhu. Thakura Mahasaya with other singers and instrumentalists started sankirtana gladly. Within a second the whole atmosphere changed into a divine-like feelings.

Devidasa started playing khola and kartala. Gokula started singing nectar-like kirtana, the sound of which pierced the heaven. The voice of Sri Mahasaya led to the ocean of happiness to overflow its bank. Viracandra amidst the group of Vaisnavas began to shine like the sun. He in his beautiful feature began to dance magnificiently with the music and kirtana. With raised hands he began to utter “Haribola” very sweetly. His big deep eyes began to shed tears of joy. His restless lotus-like fet began to move very beautifully. The gods began to shower flowers upon the heads of the Vaisnavas. Prabhu Viracandra in the hope of dancing with all of them, began to stare here and there. In the meantime, he found that Sri Acarya with his follwers were dancing by his side. The earth began to tremble by the feet steppings of the dancers. Gradually all of them forgot their own entities and began to roar like lions.

Someone began to tremble out of trance. Someone began to hold the feet of Viracandra. Someone began to roll on the ground out of ecstasy. Prabhu out of ecstasy tightly embraced Narottama and did not let him go out of his embrace. Sometimes he began to caress the face of Gokula. Sometimes he began to praise Sri Govinda Kaviraja for his songs. Then he began to encourage Gokula to sing more. Sri Gokula thus began to sing more beautifully the songs written by Sri Govinda in a very expert manner. In this way midnight came. Then they stopped sankirtana and took their seats in the courtyard of Gauranga.

In the morning all the Vaisnavas came to the house of Viracandra who requested Ramacandra to sing the songs of Sri Rasa Vilasa. Ramacandra’s voice was just like nectar. His beautiful analysis of Bhagavatam highly pleased Viracandra. Viracandra told Acarya, “I am afraid, can I meet you all again and have this valuable company of yours?” Saying so, he began to weep. Acarya also began to weep with him. Somehow they checked their emotions and then Sri Rupa Ghataka, Ganganarayana, Syamadasa, Govinda and others brought fruit and sweets offerings for Sri Govardhana Sila. Prabhu offered them to Him. After that he offered betel leaves to Him and then put Him in a gold casket inside his cloth bag. After observing the image of Sri Gauranga, they all took prasadam.

Prabhu then took some rest and after that he told Acarya, “I want to back to Khardaha via Ekacakra. Tomorrow morning I have decided to start. You should go with me for some distance.” Acarya said, “Who will stand before your decision? Do what you want to do.” Prabhu Viracandra said with a smile, “I cannot turn down your request. I have just tell you about my programme, now do what you think better.” Acarya told Narottama, “Tomorrow, Prabhu will leave Khetari with me.” Hearing this Thakura Mahasaya became very much perturbed and Acarya pacified him. He ordered Santosa to make arrangements for Prabhu’s going. He ordered Thakura Kanai to pack the things what they would send with Prabhu. He ordered Rupa Ghataka to pack the things what Acarya would carry. He sent a messenger to Vudhuri very quickly and ordered his men to arrange a large number of boats for Prabhu on the bank of Padmavati.

Next morning, Prabhu Viracandra with Acarya and others stood before Gauranga. Then Prabhu returned to his house where many persons came to say farewell to Prabhu. Prabhu then started for the bank of Padmavati. The disciples of Thakura Mahasaya very humbly touched the feet of Prabhu Viracandra who blessed them all. Viracandra consoled Thakura Mahasaya and Ramacandra Kaviraja in variuos ways and took leave of them for some months. Acarya also consoled the villagers of Khetari. Then he with Viracandra boarded on the boat. Ramacandra and others also took another boat. The boatmen started the boats. The remaining Vaisnavas along with Thakura Mahasaya who had been standing on the bank of Padmavati started crying loudly. Viracandra with his followers reached Vudhuri by crosing Padmavati.

With a clouded heart, Thakura Mahasaya returned to the temple of Gauranga. All of them observed Gauranga, Vallabhikanta, Sri Vrajamohana, Radhakanta, Radhakrsna and Sri Radharamana whose faces at once removed the clouds from their minds. Thakura Mahasaya with others quickly took their baths and then ate mahaprasadam. They spent that day in discussing about Krsna. But since that day, Thakura Mahasaya became quite restless.

After a few days, Ramacandra came from Yajigrama. Thakura Mahasaya became very glad to get back Ramacandra and became engaged in sankirtana for the days and nights with Govinda and others in the courtyard of Gauranga. Even king Narasimha and Canda Raya joined them in that wave of happiness. After a few days, Thakura Mahasaya told his disciples, “For a long time you have not gone to your own houses. This time pay a quick visit to your places.” Though no one really wanted to leave Thakura Mahsaya, yet being ordered by him, they had to start for their houses. Only Ramacandra stayed with him.

One day, sitting in a lonely place, Thakura Mahasaya and Ramacandra discussed something secret. Ramacandra Kaviraja after soetimes went to Yajigrama with a perturbed mind. A message came from Yajigrama that Sri Acarya Thakura had gone to Vrndavana with Ramacandra Kaviraja. Who could understand the mind of those two?

One day Sri Mahasaya could not control his mind and began to lament for some unprecedented happenings. He began to sing: “The associates of Gauranga are Srinivasa, Gadadhara, Narahari, Mukunda, Murari. Svarupa Damodara, Haridasa, Vakresvara are possessors of divine love. The sports what they had performed could melt the stone, but how unforunate I am for not able to witness them. I failed to be born at that time and remained ignorant, how can I forget this sorrow? Prabhu Sanatana, Rupa, Raghunatha Bhatta, Bhugarbha, Sri Jiva, Lokanatha, all these Prabhus did beautiful sports in Vrndavana with other devotees. Now all of them have disapeared, leaving this world empty, my eyes have become blind to whom I shall disclose my sorrow? Thus I am living like an animal. Acarya Srinivasa to whom I got the refuge and whose words used to cool my mind, he also has left me, and Ramacandra is absent, how can I live without them? The sorrows which I am bearing in my mind, cannot be told to others. So I have lost interest in my own life. The food I used to eat is just like poison to me, yet I am still living. Then what is the value of Narottama dasa?”

At that moment, the news came to him that Ramacandra Kaviraja had disappeared from the world. Sri Thakura Mahasaya completely broke down and ran to a dense forest. He began to cry loudly and lamented for Ramacandra. His voice became chocked and he fell on the ground. King Narasimha, Rupanarayana, Sri Govinda, Santosa could do nothing to pacify him. They could only cry along with Thakura Mahasaya. Due to the wish of Prabhu, he pacified himself after a long time. After 5-7 days, he decided to go for a bath in the Ganges. So some of his disciples very carefully took him to Vudhuri and from there to Gamvila near the bank of the Ganges. Suddenly he got tremendous temperature and he ordered his disciples to prepare a pyre for him. Then he remained completely silent. His disciples became completely at a loss. Ganganarayana pacified others. Many brahmana panditas came to meet him but he did not speak to them. In this state, he spent three days. He remained detached from the people. His disciples bathed him in the Ganges and placed him on a celestial seat on the pyre. The brahmanas began to jeer at Narottama by saying in this way, “This is the result of his effort of making brahmanas, his disicples. Now Narottama is dying after losing the power of speaking. Ganganarayana being a brahmana has become his disciple after discarding the customs of a brahmana. Now he is witnessing the condition of his religious master. We don’t know what is expecting for him also.”

In this way, they began to throw the arrows of words towards Ganganarayana. Instead of being angry, Ganganarayana felt sorry for those heretics. He came and stood before the pyre with folded hands and prayed to Narottama, “You had saved many heretics before. This time these heretics being ignorant of your power, are criticising you. Your disciples are feeling very sad to hear their bad words. Please be favorable to them and save them from damnation.”

On hearing the helpless utterances of Ganganarayana Mahasaya again came back into sense. He got up on the pyre uttering “Radhakrsna Caitanya” and came out of the pyre shinning like the sun. The people around him began to shout Haribola. Suddenly the gods began to shower flowers on him.

The now-believer brahmanas watching everything from distance became horrified. They began to repent for their evil mentality. With tears in their eyes, they fell on the feet of Ganganarayana and asked for mercy. Being moved by their prayers, Ganganarayana went to Mahasaya and requested him to forgive those brahmanas. The brahmanas then fell on the feet of Narottama and completely surrendered themselves after confessing all their sins. Thakura Mahasaya became so moved that he at once embraced them and empowered them with devotion. He ordered them to study devotional books to Ganganarayana.

He then told everybody, “After few days I shall go to Khetari and you all should go with me. Today I shall go to Vudhuri.” Saying so he quickly took bath in the Ganges. This incident spread all over the country. From the bank of the Ganges, Mahasaya with others went to the house of Ganganarayana. There they ate prasadam. Then he started for Vudhuri very gladly. He went back to Khetari with Sri Govinda, Kaviraja, Karnapura, Kaviraja Gokula, Valabhi Majumdar and others and remained engaged on the topics of Krsna. Narottama used to serve the Prabhus all the time. Sometimes he used to roll in the dust of the courtyard of Gauranga and used to pray to the Prabhu in this way, “Oh Lord Gauranga, Vallabhi Kanta Krsna, be merciful to me like a materialist. Oh Lord, Radhakanta, Sri Vrajamohana, let me get rid of the agonies of this material world. Oh Lord Radharamana, let me lie under your feet and do help me to remember you in this life and life after death.” In this way, he used to lament everyday.

In order to avoid crowd, he used to enter into the dense forest and cry out loudly, “Oh Lord Gauranga Sundara, the moon of Navadvipa, oh Lord Nityananda, son of Padmavati, oh Lord Advaita, the husband of Sita, oh Lord Sri Pandita Gadadhara, the abode of love, oh Lord, Pandita Srivasa, the ocean of mercy, oh lords Vakresvara, Sri Murari, Haridasa, Sri Svarupa, Ramananda, Damodara, Sri Acarya Gopinatha, Kasisvara, oh lords Vacaspati, Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya, oh lords Suryadasa, Gauridasa, oh Sri Pandita Jagadisa Suklamvara, oh Sri Govinda Ghosa, Dasa Gadadhara, oh Pundarika Vidyanidhi Mahasaya, Mukunda, Madhava, Vasu Ghosa, Dhananjaya, oh Sri Jagadananda, Sankara, Sridhara, oh Sri Mukunda, Narahari, oh Sri Rupa, Sanatana, Sri Bhugarbha, Lokanatha, oh Sri Gopala Bhatta, Raghunatha Bhatta, oh Svarupa Raghunatha, the dwellers of Sri Kunda, oh Sri Jiva Gosvami and oh the devotees of Gaura Nityananda, be merciful to me, I am at your feet. Don’t neglect me because I am a sinner. Please fulfill my desires.”

With these prayers his eyes began to shed continuous tears. He began to roll on the ground. He began to pray to Sri Govinda, Gopinatha, Madanamohana, Radha Damodara, Sri Radharamana, Radhavinoda and the Queen of Vrndavana. He also prayed to Lalita, Visakha, Sucitra, Sri Campakalatika, Rangadevi, Sudevi, Tungavidya, Indulekha, Sri Rupamanjari, Ratimanjari, Kasturi, Lavangamanjari, Manjulali to help him to stay under the feet of Radharani.

He prayed to Sri Radha, “Oh Sri Radharani, Krsna is yours, you are always engaged in His service. Please give me the chance of worshipping You both. I want to place you on a jewelled throne and I shall fan you at that time. Being directed by the sakhis, I shall offer betel leaves to your moon-like mouths. Will any desires be fulfilled?”

Saying so, he sighed. Then he tried to remember the sports of Gauranga with his asociates in Nadia. Observing the restless state of mind of Thakura Mahasaya, Sri Radhavallabha became very anxious. Sometimes Thakura Mahasaya used to console his dear disciples and used to concentrate them in sankirtana. One day he asked his disciples about the delay of Ganganarayana in coming to Khetari. In the meantime, Ramakrsna and Ganganarayana came with those brahmanas. All of them bowed to the feet of Thakura Mahasaya and expressed their desires of being initiated by Thakura Mahasaya. Thakura Mahasaya became glad. He intitiated some of them and some of them got initiation from Ganganarayana. After that, all of them went to the courtyard of Gauranga. The priest gave them offered garlands. Sri Govinda Kaviraja and others became satisfied to observe the sincere efforts of the brahmanas. Sri Sankara Bhattacarya and other brahmanas very humbly bowed to the feet of the Vaisnavas.

On the next day, a great festival took place. The brahmanas became mad in sankirtana. One day, Mahasaya in the morning, began to shed tears helplessly with fire-like sighs. He laid down on the ground for sometime and his lotus face became dry. He with a chocked voice, began to lament in this way, “How cruel is the providence to me, where Srinivasa has gone after giving me so much pain? I had Ramacandra but he also had left me and I cannot hear a word from him any longer. Can I have him again in my life, my life has become futile. Svarupa, Rupa, Sanatana, Raghunatha, the merciful, and the Bhattas, be kind to me. Acarya Srinivasa whose servant is Ramacandra, can I have them again? Without observing their faces my heart is getting pierced, just like a doe pierced by poisonous arrow. I kept some jewels hidden under my cloth, who has stolen them why Narottama is suffering so much misery?”

Saying so, he kept mum and everyone became aware of some unforeseen incidents. On knowing the state of mind of his dear disciples, Mahasaya consoled them all. Thakura Mahasaya came to the courtyard of Gauranga and dedicated himself once again to the feet of Prabhu. He started for Vudhuri with Govinda and others. He stayed one day at Vudhuri and Sri Govinda Cakravarti and others came to meet him. After talking very sweetly with them, Mahasaya spent the day and night in sankirtana. From Vudhuri, he quickly moved to Gamvila.

After taking bath in the Ganges, he sat in the water and ordered Ramakrsna and Ganganarayana to massage his body. But there was no chance of massaging his body because only the touch of their hands, Thakura Mahasaya’s body melted like milk and vanished in the Ganges. Suddenly the river became turbulent. Everyone became puzzled at this. The gods began to shower flowers from the heaven on seeing this type of disappearance. The cry of Hari Hari filled the air. The disciples of Sri Mahasaya went to the house of Ganganarayana and very patiently they kept themselves calm and quiet. Sri Govinda Kaviraja and others quickly arranged for a funeral ceremony at Gamvila. Then they went hastily to Khetari via Vudhuri. There king Narasimha, Rupanarayana, Krsnasimha, Canda Raya, Sri Gopiramana, Sri Govinda, King Santosa and others started preparations for a great festival.

Due to the fear of exaggeration, I restrain myself from describing the festival in toto but when they started sankirtana in the courtyard of Gauranga, within a short time, Devidasa, Gauranga, Gokula, Sri Govinda Kaviraja and others forgot their own entities. They began to roll of the ground. They began to roar like lions and they began to soak the ground with their tears. Suddenly due to the favor of guru, Krsna and Vaisnavas, everyone witnessed Narottama dancing with them. When he vanished everyone lost their patience. So Narotatma again appeared and consoled them all. Who can realise the qualities of Thakura Mahasaya?

So to get his favor, be attentive to Narottama Vilasa, narrating by Narahari.

THE TWELFTH VILASA

All glories to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Nityananda Prabhu, Advaita Acarya and their associates. Please be kind to this poor soul. All glories to the merciful listeners.

Who could possibly describe all the wonderful disciples of Sri Thakura Mahasaya? Although I am unqualified and ignorant, I shall try to describe some of the branches and twigs who descended from the tree of Sri Narottama dasa Thakura. Please forgive my frailties and bestow your mercy upon me as I am always at your service.

All glories to the disciples of Sri Mahasaya. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Nityananda and Advaita are their very life. Glory to Sri Pujari Balarama who satisfied the Lord by his intense devotion. Glory to Cakravarti Sri Gopiramana to whom Gauracandra and his associates are the life. Glory to Sri Acarya Ramakrsna, the mine of qualities whose branches and twigs covered the whole world. Glory to Sri Pujari Ravi Raya who derived immense pleasure from simply serving the Vaisnavas. All glories to Cakravarti Ganganarayana who also has many disciples. Glory to Radhavallabha Caudhuri who bound Sri Thakura Mahasaya by his love. Ramakanta is the elder brother of Sri Mahasaya and Sri Radhavallabha is the son of Ramakanta. Glory to Sri Ghosa whose songs charmed Sri Thakura Mahasaya. Glory to Krsna Sinha who is better known as Sinha Vikrama. He is always mad with love, and is an expert musician. Glory to Sri Santosa Raya whose service charmed Sri Thakura Mahasaya. Narottama Thakura is very affectionate towards Sri Govinda Kaviraja who expressed his realizations through his songs. Being requested by Santosa, Kaviraja gladly wrote a drama named Sangita Madhava. Glory to King Sri Govindarama whose tongue used to chant Harinama incessantly. Glory to Sri Vinoda Raya who used to dance madly in sankirtana. Glory to Phagu Caudhuri, a great scholar whose songs could even charm the Gandharvas. Glory to the great scholar Sri Casanta Raya who is always absorbed in the pastimes of Krsna Caitanya. Glory to Sri Sitala Raya whose calm disposition always charms the Vaisnavas. Glory to Prabhu Ramadatta whose eyes always shed tears of love. Glory to apathetic Dharmadasa Caudhuri who practises firm belief in the Vaisnavas. Glory to Nityanandadasa who is mad in love for Prabhu Nityananda. Glory to Candidasa, an abode of good qualities, who is kind to the wicked and poor. Glory to Dhiru Caudhuri whose qualities used to make the animals and birds cry. Glory to Vonka Ramabhadra, a very humourous person. Glory to the friend of the poor, Ramabhadra Raya. Glory to Rupanarayana whose songs used to melt everyone’s heart. Glory to Janakivallabha Caudhuri Thakura. Glory to Sri Srimanta Datta Bhandari Glory to Rupanarayana Pujari Thakura. Glory to apathetic Vaisnava Carana. Glory to broadminded Sivarama dasa. Glory to Krsnadasa Vairagi Thakura. Glory to king Narasimha. Glory to Queen Rupamala. Glory to Canda Raya. Glory to Narayana Raya. Glory to Ramacandra Raya. Glory to the kirtana singer Devidasa whose songs madden the Vaisnavas. Glory to Radhakrsna Bhattacarya of Navadvipa. Glory to wise Sri Thakura Krsnadasa. Glory to Catna Ramadasa. Glory to Sankara Visvasa. Glory to the great singer Gandharva Raya. Glory to Madana Raya, son of Gandharva Raya. Glory to Gangadasa Raya. Glory to the instrumentalist Gauranga dasa whose mrdanga playing removes the agony of everyone. Glory to Sri Acarya Jayakrsna. Glory to Varu Caitanyadasa. Glory to Vraja Raya. Glory to Radhakrsna dasa. Glory to Krsna Raya. Glory to Thakura Sri Dayarama dasa. Glory to Sri Purusottama. Glory to the great singer Gokula dasa. Glory to Haridasa whose only desire is to live in Navadvipa. Glory, glory to Ganga Haridasa. Glory to Sri Thakura Haridasa. Glory to Sri Jagata Raya. Glory to the singer Rupa Raya. Glory to Dhiru Caudhuri. Glory to Sri Kanta. Glory to Sri Mathura dasa. Glory to Sri Bhagavata dasa. Glory to Jagadisa Raya. Glory to Thakura Sri Mahesa Caudhuri. Glory to Ganesa Caudhuri. Glory to Candrasekhara. Glory to Sri Govinda Raya. Glory to Narottama a Majumdara. Glory to Sri Sri Sankara Bhattacarya. Glory to Sri Gosvami dasa. Glory to Sri Murari dasa. Glory to Sri Vasanta Datta. Glory to Thakura Sri Syama dasa. Glory to Sri Jayagopala Datta. Glory to Ramadeva Datta. Glory to Gangadasa Datta. Glory to Manohara Ghosa. Glory to Sri Mukuta Maitra. Glory to Sri Manohara Visvasa. Glory to Sri Arjuna Visvasa. Glory to Sri Govardhana Bhandari. All glories to Sri Valakadasa Vairagi Thakura, Sri Gaurangadasa Vairagi, Sri Viharidasa Vairagi Thakura, Sri Gokuldasa Vairagi, Sri Prasada dasa Vairagi. There is no limit in describing the qualities of all these Vaisnavas. Their fame spread all over the world. I desire to worship them and sing their glories without any attraction towards material pleasure.

Now I give further description of the branches and twigs of Narottama dasa Thakura. Ramakrsna Acarya has a big branch having many disciples. Kanakalatika is the wife of Sri Acarya. She is a devoted wife and a great devotee of Krsna. Radhakrsnacarya, the eldest son of Acarya died at an early age. Radhakrsna Cakravarti of Vetula is a great devotee. Sri Svarupa Cakravarti of Husanapura is a sincere servant of Sri Govinda. Sri Gopala Cakravarti of Kumarapura whose topic is on everyone’s lips. There is no limit of the branches and twigs to whom Sri Krsna Caitanya is the life.

Ganganarayana is the branch of Sri Thakura Mahasaya. Ganganarayana got the title of Sri Thakura Cakravarti. Everyone used to sing his glory even today in Vrndavana. He has many branches and twigs of disciples. Narahari, wife of Sri Cakravarti is the mother of Visnupriya. Krsnapriya, daughter of Visnupriya is favored by Sri Radharani of Sri Radha Kunda. Sri Krsna Carana Cakravarti is the youngest son of Ramakrsna Acarya. How can I sing the glory of Sri Krsnacarana. I am trying to present a brief account of his branches and twigs. Rama Krsna and Ganganarayana are the same entity. Sri Thakura Cakravarti has no son. Acarya realising his desire, favored Ganganarayana by giving a son. And that son is Sri Krsnacarana, son of Sri Acarya. Sri Krsnacarana became a great scholar in a short time. Sri Madhusudana Cakravarti is another branch to whom Ganganarayan is the life. Raghudeva Cakravarti is a great devotee of Sri Cakravarti Thakura.

I restrain myself from narrating all the branches and twigs of Sri Cakravarti Thakura. The branches of Sri Mahasaya’s disciples are all abodes of exemplary qualities who were always absorbed in the joy of sankirtana. I have no capacity to descibe the transcendental pastimes of Sri Thakura Mahasaya, therefore I am fully dependent on the mercy of the Vaishnava Gosvamis.

Thus listen attentively to the narration of Narottama Vilasa by Narahari.

MotelGita: More and more motel owners welcome Gita in their motels! (Album of photos)..
The glories of Narottama dasa Thakura

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