By Janananda Gosvami
“I wanted everyone to be immersed in this inundation of love of Godhead, but some of them have escaped. Therefore I shall devise a trick to drown them also.” Thus the Lord accepted the sannyäsa order of life after full consideration.
Throughout the world this glorious occasion will be celebrated between the above dates. The exact day is not clearly definable although it is clearly between these dates. He left home, from all accounts, on the auspicious day of makara sankranthi, during the waxing fortnight of the month of magha. In the Prema Vilas it is stated that He will take sannyasa on the third day of magha, which in most places is the 18th Jnauary. So we are encouraging all devotees and centres to take advantage of this by organising Nagar sankirtana processions. You could take Gaura Nitai on palanquins to every town and village or wherever you can. Discuss about the event and Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s pastimes and teachings. Distribute literature about Caitanya Mahaprabhu.
WHY THE LORD ACCEPTS SANNYASA EXTERNAL REASONS TO SPREAD THE HOLY NAMES AND DELIVER EVERYONE In Caitanya Bhagavata Ch. 26 the following discussion takes place between the Lord and Nityananda prabhu. Many local brahmana students had just formed a group opposed to the Lord and had started to blaspheme against Him. The Lord was very concerned. “Sometime after this incident Gaurahari was sitting with all His devotees, when suddenly He made a mysterious remark, the meaning of which was too shrouded for anyone to understand. He said, “The medicine ‘pippali-khanda’ was prepared to cure the excess phlegm, but instead it has increased the phlegm in the body.” Saying this, the Lord began laughing loudly musing over something incomprehensible to all. The devotees became very concerned.” (the meaning of this statement is that the Lord’s intent was to preach the highest truth for the benefit of all but the students have instead blasphemed and thus caused offense) Nityänanda knew the inner meaning of the Lord’s statement and understood His confidential mood. He thought, “Soon the Lord will leave home and take sannyasa.” Nityänanda fell into deep despair. The life air seemed to leave His body at the thought of seeing His beloved Sri Caitanya, as beautiful as He is, being shorn of those lovely locks of hair. The Lord said, “Listen, Nityananda. I will tell You My heart’s desires. I descended to deliver the whole world. Instead of delivering, I am simply destroying them. Instead of becoming free from bondage by seeing Me, people are entangled more and more. When they thought of beating* Me, they were at once entangled by unlimited bondage simply by this thought. “I appeared to deliver the people, but instead I have personally ruined them all. You will see, tomorrow I will shave My head and accept sannyasa. I will beg alms door to door. Those who wanted to kill Me today, tomorrow I will go to their doors as a beggar. Seeing Me in that form, people will fall at My feet. I will thus deliver the whole world. People generally respect a sannyasi and would not dare to beat him. I will take sannyasa and wander door to door for alms. Let us see who will beat Me. So I have disclosed My heart to You. I am determined to give up My household life. Please do not feel sad about this. Rather You should encourage and help Me take sannyasa. I will do whatever You make Me do. Suggest to Me the way to take sannyasa. If You really want to deliver the whole world, then do not forbid Me. Do not even feel distress in Your mind, for You know the cause of My incarnation. “If you really want to see that everyone in the world becomes liberated, then you must not prohibit Me from My decision. You should be the last person to lament over this, because You know the confidential reason for My advent.” From the Caitanya Caritamrita. Adi Lila 17.259-273 “All the so-called professors and scientists and their students generally follow the regulative principles of religion, fruitive activities and austerities,” the Lord thought, “yet at the same time they are blasphemers and rogues. “If I do not induce them to take to devotional service, because of committing the offense of blasphemy none of these people will be able to take to it. “I have come to deliver all the fallen souls, but now just the opposite has happened. How can these rogues be delivered? How may they be benefited? If these rogues offer Me obeisances, the reactions of their sinful activities will be nullified. Then, if I induce them, they will take to devotional service. “I must certainly deliver all these fallen souls who blaspheme Me and do not offer Me obeisances. “I shall accept the sannyasa order of life, for thus people will offer Me their obeisances, thinking of Me as a member of the renounced order. “Offering obeisances will relieve them of all the reactions to their offenses. Then, by My grace, devotional service [bhakti] will awaken in their pure hearts.”All the unfaithful rogues of this world can be delivered by this process. There is no alternative. From Caitanya Caritamrta. Adi Lila Ch. 7 texts 29-33 “The impersonalists, fruitive workers, false logicians, blasphemers, nondevotees and lowest among the student community are very expert in avoiding the Krsna consciousness movement, and therefore the inundation of Krsna consciousness cannot touch them. Seeing that the Mäyävädis and others were fleeing, Lord Caitanya thought, “I wanted everyone to be immersed in this inundation of love of Godhead, but some of them have escaped. Therefore I shall devise a trick to drown them also.” Thus the Lord accepted the sannyäsa order of life after full consideration. PURPORT “There was no need for Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu to accept sannyasa, for He is God Himself and therefore has nothing to do with the material bodily concept of life. Although there was actually no need for Him to accept sannyasa, He did so for the benefit of those who might think Him an ordinary human being. The main purpose of His accepting sannyasa was to deliver the Mayavadi sannyasis. Therefore Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu accepted sannyasa to facilitate preaching His devotional cult, although otherwise He had no need to accept the fourth order of spiritual life.
(Because Mahaprabhu had taken sannyasa from Kesava Bharati, who was accepted as a mayavadi sannyasi, the mayavadis accepted Lord Caitanya into their midst and eventually also became devotees. In fact wherever the Lord went all types of persons – Buddhists, Muslims, Jains, scholars, non believers – all surrendered to Him.) THE BLESSED CURSE. From the Caitanya Caritamrita Adi Lila Ch. 17 texts 60-64. “Another brahmana came to see the kirtana performance, but the door was closed, and he could not enter the hall. He returned home with an unhappy mind, but on the next day he met Lord Caitanya on the bank of the Ganges and spoke to Him. That brahmana was expert in talking harshly and cursing others. Thus he broke his sacred thread and declared, “I shall now curse You, for Your behavior has greatly aggrieved me.” The brahmana (breaking his sacred thread), cursed the Lord, “You shall be bereft of all material happiness! (As You kept me out of Your house You will also be kept out of Your house)”. When the Lord heard this, He felt great jubilation within Himself. (The brahmana then came to His senses wondering from where these words came and greatly resented his statement )
(This pastime is further explained in the Caitanya Mangal of Locana das) As the ideal acarya Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu was teaching the highest purpose of human life – attachment to Krsna and detachment from matter. For the purpose of preaching Lord Caitanya accepted sannyasa.
By taking sannyasa the Lord not only Himself experienced in full the ecstasy of vipralambha bhava (separation from the Lord) but also plunged His devotees into that mood. They all experienced this ecstasy of separation when the Lord took sannyasa.
From the Caitanya Mangal: “I must take sannyasa in order to attain love of Krishna. Then I’ll take the treasure of Krishna-prema to different countries. Other mothers’ sons bring the transient treasures of gold and silver which simply cause misery and death. Enjoying wealth and opulence is not the goal of life. “I will bring the topmost treasure of Krishna-prema. Love of Krishna is eternal and imperishable in this world and the next. In every life one gets a father and mother. Rarely, however, does one obtain a guru and Krishna. In the human birth, one should understand the importance of serving guru and Krishna. One who doesn’t accept a guru is no better than a bird or beast.”
(From Prema Vilas by Nityananda das) “I have come to Gauda manifesting the mood of Shri Radha. I want to experience Shri Radha’s feeling of separation from her beloved Krishna. For My sake, Shrimati Radhika has given up her family and wealth, completely dedicating herself to My service. The memory of Me has caused her to become lean and thin. She is not even concerned about her appearance and she never looks at the face of another man. Eager for My company, she remains constantly absorbed in hearing and chanting about Me. Being angry with Me, she used to complain about My character to the flower groves and the Jamuna, but upon seeing Me, she would immediately forget her anger. To Shri Radha, one days separation from me is like a hundred years. She is My beloved, together we enjoyed transcendental pastimes in Vrndavana. It is because of her that I want to live in Vrndavana. She is My life and I am the same to her. ” “Now listen as I describe another unfortunate incident. There is one brahmana who has committed a great sin by criticising Me. He does not know that Krishna is the only guru of this universe. Forgetting this, he arrogantly travels about, worshiping other deities, not knowing that Krishna is the Supreme Lord and that all deities have emanated from His mouth. He does not understand that by rejecting Krishna he has become less than a vaisya or sudra.” “But who will understand My mind, or My desire? I am always absorbed in the mood of Shri Radha, who always wore blue colored garments–the colour of My complexion. However, when we were separated she would wear a saffron colored dress. Always regarding herself as My maidservant, she and her confidants gave up their lives. Now I shall also give up My life for her. Therefore my complexion is of the same colour as Her’s. Soon I shall wear the saffron colored dress of separation and gladly become her servant. I shall meditate on her and sing her glories constantly. I cannot repay My dept to her, even in a hundred years. I am telling you Lokanatha, to honour Her properly I shall flood the universe by singing her praises. After attaining her love, I shall dance, cry, and roll on the ground in sankirtana.”
Thank you Please do whatever you can to honour the 500th sannyasa anniversary of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu. I hope this finds you well.
Your servant Janananda Gosvami
“Thus with two intentions the Lord appeared with His devotees and tasted the nectar of prema with the congregational chanting of the holy name. Thus He spread kértana even among the untouchables. He wove a wreath of the holy name and prema, with which He garlanded the entire material world.” (From CC. Adi 4. 39-40 describing Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu)
500th ANNIVERSARY OF LORD CAITANYA’S SANNYASA
JANUARY 14th -19th 2010
Throughout ISKCON we are celebrating from the 14th January till the 19th. The actual date of His sannyasa is a little obscure but it is definitely between those dates. Most likely it is the 18th or the third day of the month of magha. Check your calendar. He left home early in the morning on the auspicious day of Makara sankranthi when the sun begins its northern journey. The Lord was in His 24th year when he took sannyasa.
In Mayapura the festival will begin on the 14th and goes through till February 2nd. They will visit many of the places visited by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, just after taking sannyasa, culminating with His arrival in Puri.
We are hoping devotees will make every effort to spread the mission of Lord Caitanya at this time with mass Harinama sankirtana parties – perhaps with palanquins carrying Deities of Gaura Nitai and go through the towns and villages chanting the holy names. Readings and discussion about Lord Caitanya and His sannyasa, extra temple kirtanas etc..
In the Caitanya Bhagavat chapters 26-28 and the Caitanya Mangal chapters 10-14 there is much information on this pastime. Especially in the Caitanya Mangal the heart rending events concerning the Lord’s discussions with His mother Sacimata and wife Visnupriya are accounted. These will be sent out as a separate attachment shortly.
Caitanya Caritamrita Adi Lila 3.49
“In His early pastimes He appears as a householder with a golden complexion. His limbs are beautiful, and His body, smeared with the pulp of sandalwood, seems like molten gold. In His later pastimes He accepts the sannyasa order, and He is equipoised and peaceful. He is the highest abode of peace and devotion, for He silences the impersonalist nondevotees.”
Srila Prabhupada states that this is a verse from the Mahabharata (Dana-dharma, Visnu-sahasra-nama-stotra). In his commentary on the Visnu-sahasra-nama, called the Namartha-sudha, Srila Vyasadeva already confirmed this pastime would take place.
ANYONE WHO HEARS THE LORDS PASTIME OF TAKING SANNYASA WILL BE BLESSED AND FREED FROM KARMIC REACTION.
“The Madhya-khanda section of this book ends with the Lord receiving sannyasa. Whosoever hears this narration will immediately be rewarded with servitorship to His lotus feet. By hearing this most auspicious pastime of sannyasa initiation, one certainly receives the ultimate treasure of krsna-prema.” (Caitanya Bhagavat Ch. 28).
“The divine hero of Vaikuntha left home to enter the renounced order to liberate all living entities. My dear brothers, respected readers, by hearing the narrations of the Supreme Lord taking sannyasa, one is freed from all material bondage. (Caitanya Bhagavat Ch 28: Sri Caitanya Takes Sannyasa)
“My dear readers, please listen attentively to the details of the Lord receiving sannyasa. By hearing this, one is freed from the bondage of infinite karmic reactions.