Tridandisvami Shri Shrimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja
Shrila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja came to this world with the mission of ISKCON – Vaisnavism. What was that? It is the same mission as Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. And who is Mahaprabhu? He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Shri Krsna Himself. But He is also more than that; He is not only Krsna. He is the combination of both Shrimati Radhika and Krsna. Shri Krsna has combined with Shrimati Radhika, His power.
Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu used to always be absorbed in Radha's mood. Krsna Himself could not possess Her beauty or Her intrinsic mood. Radhika has adhirudha mahabhava, and even more than that. Krsna's mood goes up to mahabhava, but after that, He Himself does not know the mood of how to serve and please Him. He has to learn that by going to the school of Visakha-devi, and sometimes Lalita-devi. Without the help of Lalita and Visakha, He cannot relish the mood of Shrimati Radhika.
This was the mission of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu – to give the service of these moods. Krsna Himself could not do this, but when He took the beauty and the intrinsic mood of Radhika, He could then relish Her moods in Gambhira under the guidance of Svarupa Damodara (Lalita) and Ramananda Raya (Visakha).
At this time Gadadhara Pandita, who is Radhika Herself, serving Shri Krsna in Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu's pastimes, was watching to see whether or not Mahaprabhu was playing Her role perfectly. If Krsna as Mahaprabhu would make a mistake in feeling and displaying the mood of Radhika, Gadadhara Pandita prabhu would 'twist the ears' of Krsna. He would say, "Oh, You are doing it wrong. You should it do it like this."
Once, when Mahaprabhu was singing, "Barahapidam nata-vara-vapu...," Shri Gadadhara Pandita quickly came and said, "Oh, You should do it like this:
barhapitam nata-vara-vapuh karnayoh karnikaram
bibhrad vasah kanaka-kapisam vaijayantim ca malam
randhran venor adhara-sudhayapurayan gopa-vrndair
vrndaranyam sva-pada-ramanam pravisad gita-kirtih
''Wearing a peacock-feather ornament upon His head, blue karnikara flowers on His ears, a yellow garment as brilliant as gold, and the Vaijayanti garland, Lord Krsna exhibited His transcendental form as the greatest of dancers as He entered the forest of Vrndavana, beautifying it with the marks of His footprints. He filled the holes of His flute with the nectar of His lips, and the cowherd boys sang His glories.''
Although Krsna, as Mahaprabhu, was perspiring, His heart melting, and His tears falling like heavy rain, there was some defect, and Gadadhara Pandita therefore instructed Him by showing Him through his own example.
To think that Shri Krsna had taken away the beauty and intrinsic leftwing mood of Radhika to become Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, and that Gadadhara Pandita had thus become Rukmini, is quite wrong. It is not like that at all. *
Shrila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja came for the same object and mission as Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu – that the jivas should be given raga-marga. They should know the identity of Shrimati Radhika and the nature of all Her moods. However, when he came to New Jersey, Boston, and New York, he saw that he had to first cut so many jungles. If the land of people's hearts is not fertile, how can the seed of this bhakti be given? The jungles were very dense and wild, with so many wild beasts, dangerous animals, and poisonous snakes. It took time to cut those jungles, and at the same time Pujyapada Shrila Svami Maharaja kept everything reserved in his books. He told his disciples to read about the life and character of Prahlada Maharaja, Citraketu Maharaja, and others. He had so little time, because the 'bell rang' and Krsna called him, ''I cannot remain without you. I need your service. Please come at once.'' He was bound to go to his Prabhu.
Yes, he has given everything, but you will have to go deep into them with the help of any pure Vaisnava:
yaha bhagavat pada vaisnavera sthane
ekanta asraya kara caitanya carane
(Antya-lila 5. 131)
"If you want to understand Shrimad-Bhagavatam, you must approach a self-realized Vaisnava and hear from him. You can do this when you have completely taken shelter of the lotus feet of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu."
[The second excerpt is from a lecture given by Shrila Gurudeva on the morning of July 8, 2000. There, he explained the essence of Shriman Mahaprabhu's appearance in a most interesting way:]
Shri Krsna is the Supreme Almighty, but if you go deep into the scriptures you will see so many more things about Him, as given us by Shrila Rupa Gosvami. Krsna wanted to attract the fallen souls to Him, and He wanted to give the ocean of rasa, Shrimati Radhika's mahabhava, to the world – but He could not. He could only give His own love, not love TO Him, which only Radhika has in completeness. He would therefore have to steal Her beauty and mood.
He could not steal it, however, because Radhika is always alert and more clever and intelligent than He. He could only have the wish for it, and therefore He had to beg Her. Her sakhis were also present when He prayed to Her, "I beg Your mercy, Your beauty, and Your mahabhava." Shrimati Radhika replied, "Yes, I'm donating it for some time, but You will have to attend the class of My sakhis (Visakha-devi in the form of Shri Ramananda Raya, and Lalita in the form of Shri Svarupa Damodara) so that they can sprinkle that upon You. And I will also be there (as Shri Gadadhara Pandita). Krsna was thus able to come and give what no other incarnation or acarya gave before: manjari bhava, direct service to Shrimati Radhika as Her maidservant.
*Endnote: (from Shrila Gurudeva's lecture in Jagannatha Puri, on October 7, 2001)
One should not think that when Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu took Shrimati Radhika's bhava She became zero. In a drama, someone may take the part of someone else who is present in the audience. That second person has not become zero. Someone may play Radha and Krsna, and Radha and Krsna may also be present, watching. Similarly, when Lord Shri Krsna 'took' the bhava of Radhika and became Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, She was also present, watching, in the form of Shri Gadadhara Pandita.
Radhika came in the form of Shri Gadadhara. It is extremely important to know Gadadhara-tattva, the established philosophical truths of Shri Gadadhara Pandita. There is no difference between Shri Gadadhara Pandita and Shrimati Radhika, but the activities are different in Krsna's pastimes and Gaura's pastimes. In Gaura-lila Shri Gadadhara Pandita is in the mood of a servant.
No gopi, including Candravali, Lalita and Visakha, is qualified to experience Shrimati Radhika's madanakya-mahabhava (Her super-most ecstatic love). Krsna experiences the ecstatic loving moods of rudha and adirudha, but not madanakhya-mahabhava. Shri Gadadhara Pandita, on the other hand has madanakya-mahabhava. In Gaura-lila, however, it is covered, so that Gadadhara Pandita can help Krsna to play the part of Shrimati Radhika. In the form of Shri Gadadhara Pandita, Shrimati Radhika is looking and examining, and if there is something wrong in Krsna (as Mahaprabhu), She corrects it...
Shri Gadadhara Pandita is Shrimati Radhika, and he therefore has up to madanakya mahabhava, but He wants to serve Mahaprabhu. He wants to do what Krsna wants, and thus he covers this madhurya-bhava. Shri Gadadhara Pandita knows what Mahaprabhu wants: Mahaprabhu wants to play the part of Shrimati Radhika. Right from the beginning He is in Shrimati Radha's mood, and He is chanting "Krsna prananatha (My beloved Krsna)!"
He came here to Tota-Gopinatha to hear Shrimad-Bhagavatam from Shri Gadadhara Pandita, Shrimati Radhika, to learn better how to play Her part. In its deepest understanding, Shrimad-Bhagavatam is really the glories of Shrimati Radhika's moods.
(Shrimad Bhagavatam 10.47.63)
"I repeatedly offer my respects to the dust from the feet of the women of Nanda Maharaja's cowherd village. When these gopis loudly chant the glories of Shri Krsna, the vibration purifies the three worlds."
Why did Mahaprabhu come to hear from Shri Gadadhara Pandita? Since Shri Gadadhara Pandita is Shrimati Radharani, he was able to explain Her moods described in Shrimad-Bhagavatam. The explanations of Gadadhara Pandita are the highest explanations and glorification of Her mood. His explanations will be greater than those of Vyasa, Sukadeva, and Krsna Himself. Mahaprabhu came here to know the glories of all the gopis, and especially Shrimati Radharani:
aksanvatam phalam idam na param vidamah
sakhyah pasun anuvivesayator vayasyaih
vaktram vrajesa-sutayor anuvenu-justam
yair va nipitam anurakta-kataksa-moksam
(Venu-gita, text seven)
"The gopis began to speak among themselves: O sakhis! We think that for those who have eyes, there is but one thing which is a suitable object of vision. Success of the eyes lies in beholding this object alone; we know of no other. And what is that most precious object of attachment for the eyes? It is the vision of the two sons of Maharaja Nanda, Shri Krsna and Baladeva, accompanied by the gopas, as They enter the forest taking the cows, or as They bring them back to Vrndavana. They hold Their flutes to Their lips and look upon us with mild smiles and amorous sidelong glances filled with love. At that time we drink the sweetness of Their faces."
This verse in Venu-gita of Shrimad-Bhagavatam is spoken by Shrimati Radhika and the gopis when Krsna goes cowherding. Shri Krsna is behind and Baladeva is ahead. Krsna is playing on His flute and searching for Shrimati Radhika. Shrimati Radhika comes and takes His flute, and He begins looking at Her with sidelong glances. If Shrimati Radhika explains this pastime Herself, saying, "My mood was such and such," it is surely the best explanation.
mrgayur iva kapindram vivyadhe lubdha-dharma
striyam akrta virupam stri-jitah kama-yanam
balim api balim attvavestayad dhvanksa-vad yas
tad alam asita-sakhyair dustyajas tat-katharthah
(Shrimad Bhagavatam 10.47.17)
"Like a hunter, He cruelly shot the king of the monkeys with arrows. Because He was conquered by a woman, He disfigured another woman who came to Him with amorous desires. And, even after consuming the gifts of Bali Maharaja, He bound him up with ropes as if he were a crow. So let us give up all friendship with this dark-complexioned boy, even if we can't give up talking about Him."
This verse and the one below were uttered by Shrimati Radhika at Uddhava Kyari, when Krsna was residing in Mathura. The deepest meanings of these verses were revealed to Mahaprabhu by Gadadhara Pandita Prabhu.
sapadi grha-kutumbam dinam utsrjya dina
bahava iha vihanga bhiksu-caryam caranti
(Shrimad Bhagavatam 10.47.18)
"To hear about the pastimes that Krsna regularly performs is nectar for the ears. For those who relish just a single drop of that nectar, even once, their dedication to material duality is ruined. Many such persons have suddenly given up their wretched homes and families and, themselves becoming wretched, traveled here to Vrndavana to wander about like birds, begging for their living."
Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu came here to hear, and when He heard, He fainted. Both He and Shri Gadadhara Pandita fainted. Gadadhara Pandita knew that by Mahaprabhu's hearing from him, Mahaprabhu would become more perfect to play Shrimati Radhika's part. Shrimati Radhika is the principal in the school of Shrimad-Bhagavatam, in the course of tasting its meanings.
There were three and a half confidential associates of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu in Gambhira. Why was Shri Gadadhara Pandita not one of them? He is superior to these other three and a half confidential associates. This is a hidden secret. If Shri Gadadhara Pandita were there, Mahaprabhu's separation mood would not have come. In the association with Shrimati Radhika He would have thought Himself to be Krsna.
MORE ABOUT SRI GADADHARA PANDITA PRABHU
Jagannatha Puri: October 13, 2001 Darsana
Shrila Gurudeva: Gadadhara Pandita is always serving Krsna. In Krsna-lila, whatever Krsna wishes, Shrimati Radhika always serves Him more than Candravali, Lalita, Visakha, and all others. Her whole mood is to satisfy Krsna. In Mahaprabhu-lila, because Krsna wants to relish His own self, He takes Radhika's mood, and She responds accordingly: "He wants that, so I should not disturb Him. If I help Him in this, this will be My service." Do you understand?
When Mahaprabhu was calling, "Krsna! Krsna! O Prananatha!" Radhika was there, but as an obedient servant. She was in a daksina (submissive) mood. The relationship of dasa (servant) always constitutes a daksina mood. Shri Gadadhara Pandita was even more daksina than Rukmini. Rukmini sometimes had some maan (transcendental loving anger or sulky mood), but Shri Gadadhara Pandita was not like that. If He had been in a vamya (left-wing or unsubmissive) mood, it would have been unfavorable to the mood of Krsna as Mahaprabhu. Gadadhara Pandita was always thinking, "I am His servant." If he had said to Mahaprabhu, "My dear Krsna, my dear beloved," Mahaprabhu's mood would have been disturbed.
Tunga-vidya dasi: That was in Puri. But what was the mood in Navadvipa?
Shrila Gurudeva: In Navadvipa also. At that time Gauranga was also calling out, "Krsna, Krsna," not "Radha, Radha." But at that time He was untrained. He was not yet admitted in the school of Visakha – Shri Svarupa Damodara. At that time also, Gadadhara Pandita always served as an obedient servant, covering all his moods as Shrimati Radhika.
Tunga-vidya dasi: Are Mahaprabhu and Gadadhara Pandita in the same mood in nitya-Navadvipa Dhama as well?
Shrila Gurudeva: Same mood. Gauranga was not in the mood of nagara (Krsna as the male lover). We never accept Him as nagara.