Sri Caitanya-caritamrta: Adi-lila
by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Lord Caitanya in Five Features
sri-caitanyam likhyate ’sya
agati—of the most fallen; eka—the only one; gatim—destination; natva—after offering obeisances; hina—inferior; artha—interest; adhika—greater than that; sadhakam—who can render; sri-caitanyam—unto Lord Sri Caitanya; likhyate—is being written; asya—of the Lord, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu; prema—love; bhakti—devotional service; vadanyata—magnanimity.
Let me first offer my respectful obeisances unto Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu, who is the ultimate goal of life for one bereft of all possessions in this material world and is the only meaning for one advancing in spiritual life. Thus let me write about His magnanimous contribution of devotional service in love of God.
A person in the conditioned stage of material existence is in an atmosphere of helplessness, but the conditioned soul, under the illusion of maya, or the external energy, thinks that he is completely protected by his country, society, friendship and love, not knowing that at the time of death none of these can save him. The laws of material nature are so strong that none of our material possessions can save us from the cruel hands of death. In the Bhagavad-gita (13.9) it is stated, janma-mrtyu-jara-vyadhi-duhkha-dosanudarsanam: one who is actually advancing must always consider the four principles of miserable life, namely, birth, death, old age and disease. One cannot be saved from all these miseries unless he takes shelter of the lotus feet of the Lord. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is therefore the only shelter for all conditioned souls. An intelligent person, therefore, does not put his faith in any material possessions, but completely takes shelter of the lotus feet of the Lord. Such a person is called akincana, or one who does not possess anything in this material world. The Supreme Personality of Godhead is also known as Akincana-gocara, for He can be achieved by a person who does not put his faith in material possessions. Therefore, for the fully surrendered soul who has no material possessions on which to depend, Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is the only shelter.
Everyone depends upon dharma (religiosity), artha (economic development), kama (sense gratification) and ultimately moksa (salvation), but Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, due to His magnanimous character, can give more than salvation. Therefore in this verse the words hinarthadhika-sadhakam indicate that although by material estimation salvation is of a quality superior to the inferior interests of religiosity, economic development and sense gratification, above salvation there is the position of devotional service and transcendental love for the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is the bestower of this great benediction. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu said, prema pum-artho mahan: “Love of Godhead is the ultimate benediction for all human beings.” Srila Krsnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami, the author of Caitanya-caritamrta, therefore first offers his respectful obeisances unto Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu before describing His magnanimity in bestowing love of Godhead.
jaya jaya mahaprabhu sri-krsna-caitanya
tanhara caranasrita, sei bada dhanya
jaya—all glories; jaya—all glories; mahaprabhu—unto the Supreme Lord; sri-krsna-caitanya—of the name Sri Krsna Caitanya; tanhara—of His; carana-asrita—one who has taken shelter of the lotus feet; sei—he; bada—is very much; dhanya—glorified.
Let me offer glorification to the Supreme Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. One who has taken shelter of His lotus feet is the most glorified person.
Prabhu means master. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is the supreme master of all masters; therefore He is called Mahaprabhu. Any person who takes shelter of Sri Krsna Caitanya Mahaprabhu is most glorified because by the mercy of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu he is able to get promotion to the platform of loving service to the Lord, which is transcendental to salvation.
purve gurv-adi chaya tattve kaila namaskara
guru-tattva kahiyachi, ebe pancera vicara
purve—in the beginning; guru-adi—the spiritual master and others; chaya—six; tattve—in the subjects of; kaila—I have done; namaskara—obeisances; guru-tattva—the truth in understanding the spiritual master; kahiyachi—I have already described; ebe—now; pancera—of the five; vicara—consideration.
In the beginning I have discussed the truth about the spiritual master. Now I shall try to explain the Panca-tattva.
In the First Chapter of Caitanya-caritamrta, Adi-lila, the author, Srila Krsnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami, has described the initiator spiritual master and the instructor spiritual master in the verse beginning with the words vande gurun isa-bhaktan isam isavatarakan. In that verse there are six transcendental subject matters, of which the truth regarding the spiritual master has already been described. Now the author will describe the other five tattvas (truths), namely, isa-tattva (the Supreme Lord), His expansion tattva, His incarnation tattva, His energy tattva and His devotee tattva.
panca-tattva avatirna caitanyera sange
panca-tattva lana karena sankirtana range
panca-tattva—these five tattvas; avatirna—advented; caitanyera—with Caitanya Mahaprabhu; sange—in company with; panca-tattva—the same five subjects; lana—taking with Himself; karena—He does; sankirtana—the sankirtana movement; range—in great pleasure.
These five tattvas incarnate with Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu, and thus the Lord executes His sankirtana movement with great pleasure.
In Srimad-Bhagavatam there is the following statement regarding Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu:
yajanti hi su-medhasah
“In the Age of Kali, people who are endowed with sufficient intelligence will worship the Lord, who is accompanied by His associates, by performance of sankirtana-yajna.” (Bhag. 11.5.32) Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is always accompanied by His plenary expansion Sri Nityananda Prabhu, His incarnation Sri Advaita Prabhu, His internal potency Sri Gadadhara Prabhu and His marginal potency Srivasa Prabhu. He is in the midst of them as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. One should know that Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is always accompanied by these other tattvas. Therefore our obeisances to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu are complete when we say sri-krsna-caitanya prabhu -ityananda sri-advaita gadadhara srivasadi-gaura-bhakta-vrnda. As preachers of the Krsna consciousness movement, we first offer our obeisances to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu by chanting this Panca-tattva mantra; then we say Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. There are ten offenses in the chanting of the Hare Krsna maha-mantra, but these are not considered in the chanting of the Panca-tattva mantra, namely, sri-krsna-caitanya prabhu-nityananda sri-advaita gadadhara srivasadi-gaura-bhakta-vrnda. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is known as maha-vadanyavatara, the most magnanimous incarnation, for He does not consider the offenses of the fallen souls. Thus to derive the full benefit of the chanting of the maha-mantra (Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare), we must first take shelter of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, learn the Panca-tattva maha-mantra, and then chant the Hare Krsna maha-mantra. That will be very effective.
Taking advantage of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, many unscrupulous devotees manufacture a maha-mantra of their own. Sometimes they sing, bhaja nitai gaura radhe syama hare krsna hare rama or sri-krsna-caitanya prabhu-nityananda hare krsna hare rama sri-radhe govinda. Actually, however, one should chant the names of the full Panca-tattva (sri-krsna-caitanya prabhu-nityananda sri-advaita gadadhara srivasadi-gaura-bhakta-vrnda) and then the sixteen words Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare, but these unscrupulous, less intelligent men confuse the entire process. Of course, since they are also devotees they can express their feelings in that way, but the method prescribed by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s pure devotees is to chant first the full Panca-tattva mantra and then chant the maha-mantra-Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.
panca-tattva--eka-vastu, nahi kichu bheda
rasa asvadite tabu vividha vibheda
panca-tattva—the five subjects; eka-vastu—they are one in five; nahi—there is not; kichu—anything; bheda—difference; rasa—mellows; asvadite—to taste; tabu—yet; vividha—varieties; vibheda—differences.
Spiritually there are no differences between these five tattvas, for on the transcendental platform everything is absolute. Yet there are also varieties in the spiritual world, and in order to taste these spiritual varieties one should distinguish between them.
In his Anubhasya commentary Sri Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura describes the Panca-tattva as follows: The supreme energetic, the Personality of Godhead, manifesting in five kinds of pastimes, appears as the Panca-tattva. Actually there is no difference between them because they are situated on the absolute platform, but they manifest different spiritual varieties as a challenge to impersonalists to taste different kinds of spiritual humors (rasas). In the Vedas it is said, parasya saktir vividhaiva sruyate: “The varieties of energy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead are differently known.” From this statement of the Vedas one can understand that there are eternal varieties of humors, or tastes, in the spiritual world. Sri Gauranga, Sri Nityananda, Sri Advaita, Sri Gadadhara and Srivasa are all on the same platform, but in spiritually distinguishing between them one should understand that Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is the form of a devotee, Nityananda Prabhu appears in the form of a devotee’s spiritual master, Advaita Prabhu is the form of a bhakta (devotee) incarnation, Gadadhara Prabhu is the energy of a bhakta, and Srivasa is a pure devotee. Thus there are spiritual distinctions between them. The bhakta-rupa (Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu), the bhakta-svarupa (Sri Nityananda Prabhu) and the bhakta-avatara (Sri Advaita Prabhu) are described as the Supreme Personality of Godhead Himself, His immediate manifestation and His plenary expansion, and They all belong to the Visnu category. Although the spiritual and marginal energies of the Supreme Personality of Godhead are nondifferent from the Supreme Personality of Godhead Visnu, they are predominated subjects, whereas Lord Visnu is the predominator. As such, although they are on the same platform, they have appeared differently in order to facilitate tasting of transcendental mellows. Actually, however, there is no possibility of one being different from the other, for the worshiper and the worshipable cannot be separated at any stage. On the absolute platform, one cannot be understood without the other.
panca-tattva-atmakam—comprehending the five transcendental subject matters; krsnam—unto Lord Krsna; bhakta-rupa—in the form of a devotee; svarupakam—in the expansion of a devotee; bhakta-avataram—in the incarnation of a devotee; bhakta-akhyam—known as a devotee; namami—I offer my obeisances; bhakta-saktikam—the energy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
Let me offer my obeisances unto Lord Sri Krsna, who has manifested Himself in five as a devotee, expansion of a devotee, incarnation of a devotee, pure devotee and devotional energy.
Sri Nityananda Prabhu is the immediate expansion of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu as His brother. He is the personified spiritual bliss of sac-cid-ananda-vigraha. His body is transcendental and full of ecstasy in devotional service. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is therefore called bhakta-rupa (the form of a devotee), and Sri Nityananda Prabhu is called bhakta-svarupa (the expansion of a devotee). Sri Advaita Prabhu, the incarnation of a devotee, is visnu-tattva and belongs to the same category. There are also different types of bhaktas, or devotees, on the platforms of neutrality, servitude, friendship, parenthood and conjugal love. Devotees like Sri Damodara, Sri Gadadhara and Sri Ramananda are different energies. This confirms the Vedic sutra parasya saktir vividhaiva sruyate. All these bhakta subjects taken together constitute Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, who is Krsna Himself.
svayam bhagavan krsna ekale isvara
advitiya, nandatmaja, rasika-sekhara
svayam—Himself; bhagavan—the Supreme Personality of Godhead; krsna—Lord Krsna; ekale—the only one; isvara—the supreme controller; advitiya—without a second; nanda-atmaja—appeared as the son of Maharaja Nanda; rasika—the most mellow; sekhara—summit.
Krsna, the reservoir of all pleasure, is the Supreme Personality of Godhead Himself, the supreme controller. No one is greater than or equal to Sri Krsna, yet He appears as the son of Maharaja Nanda.
In this verse Kaviraja Gosvami gives an accurate description of Lord Krsna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, by stating that although no one is equal to or greater than Him and He is the reservoir of all spiritual pleasure, He nevertheless appears as the son of Maharaja Nanda and Yasodamayi.
ara yata saba dekha,--tanra parikara
rasa-adi—the rasa dance; vilasi—the enjoyer; vraja-lalana—the damsels of Vrndavana; nagara—the leader; ara—others; yata—all; saba—everyone; dekha—must know; tanra—His; parikara—associates.
Lord Sri Krsna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is the supreme enjoyer in the rasa dance. He is the leader of the damsels of Vraja, and all others are simply His associates.
The word rasadi-vilasi (“the enjoyer of the rasa dance”) is very important. The rasa dance can be enjoyed only by Sri Krsna because He is the supreme leader and chief of the damsels of Vrndavana. All other devotees are His associates. Although no one can compare with Sri Krsna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, there are many unscrupulous rascals who imitate the rasa dance of Sri Krsna. They are Mayavadis, and people should be wary of them. The rasa dance can be performed only by Sri Krsna and no one else.
sei krsna avatirna sri-krsna-caitanya
sei parikara-gana sange saba dhanya
sei krsna—that very Lord Krsna; avatirna—has advented; sri-krsna-caitanya—in the form of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu; sei—those; parikara-gana—associates; sange—with Him; saba—all; dhanya—glorious.
The selfsame Lord Krsna advented Himself as Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu with all His eternal associates, who are also equally glorious.
ekale isvara-tattva caitanya-isvara
bhakta-bhavamaya tanra suddha kalevara
ekale—only one person; isvara-tattva—the supreme controller; caitanya—the supreme living force; isvara—controller; bhakta-bhava-maya—in the ecstasy of a devotee; tanra—His; suddha—transcendental; kalevara—body.
Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, who is the supreme controller, the one Personality of Godhead, has ecstatically become a devotee, yet His body is transcendental and not materially tinged.
There are different tattvas, or truths, including isa-tattva, jiva-tattva and sakti-tattva. Isa-tattva refers to the Supreme Personality of Godhead Visnu, who is the supreme living force. In the Katha Upanisad it is said, nityo nityanam cetanas cetananam: the Supreme Personality of Godhead is the supreme eternal and the supreme living force. The living entities are also eternal and are also living forces, but they are very minute in quantity, whereas the Supreme Lord is the supreme living force and the supreme eternal. The supreme eternal never accepts a body of a temporary material nature, whereas the living entities, who are part and parcel of the supreme eternal, are prone to do so. Thus according to the Vedic mantras the Supreme Lord is the supreme master of innumerable living entities.
The Mayavadi philosophers, however, try to equate the minute living entities with the supreme living entity. Because they recognize no distinctions between them, their philosophy is called Advaita-vada, or monism. Factually, however, there is a distinction. This verse is especially meant to impart to the Mayavadi philosopher the understanding that the Supreme Personality of Godhead is the supreme controller. The supreme controller, the Personality of Godhead, is Krsna Himself, but as a transcendental pastime He has accepted the form of a devotee, Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu.
As stated in the Bhagavad-gita, when the Supreme Personality of Godhead Krsna comes to this planet exactly like a human being, some rascals consider Him to be one of the ordinary humans. One who thinks in that mistaken way is described as mudha, or foolish. Therefore one should not foolishly consider Caitanya Mahaprabhu to be an ordinary human being. He has accepted the ecstasy of a devotee, but He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Since Caitanya Mahaprabhu, there have been many imitation incarnations of Krsna who cannot understand that Caitanya Mahaprabhu is Krsna Himself and not an ordinary human being. Less intelligent men create their own “Gods” by advertising a human being as God. This is their mistake. Therefore here the words tanra suddha kalevara warn that Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s body is not material but purely spiritual. One should not, therefore, accept Caitanya Mahaprabhu as an ordinary devotee, although He has assumed the form of a devotee. Yet one must certainly know that although Caitanya Mahaprabhu is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, because He accepted the ecstasy of a devotee one should not misunderstand His pastimes and place Him in exactly the same position as Krsna. It is for this reason only that when Sri Krsna Caitanya Mahaprabhu was addressed as Krsna or Visnu He blocked His ears, not wanting to hear Himself addressed as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. There is a class of devotees called Gauranga-nagari, who stage plays of Krsna’s pastimes using a vigraha, or form, of Caitanya Mahaprabhu. This is a mistake that is technically called rasabhasa. While Caitanya Mahaprabhu is trying to enjoy as a devotee, one should not disturb Him by addressing Him as the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
krsna-madhuryera eka adbhuta svabhava
apana asvadite krsna kare bhakta-bhava
krsna-madhuryera—the supreme pleasure potency of Krsna; eka—is one; adbhuta—wonderful; svabhava—nature; apana—Himself; asvadite—to taste; krsna—the Supreme Personality of Godhead; kare—does; bhakta-bhava—accept the form of a devotee.
The transcendental mellow of conjugal love of Krsna is so wonderful that Krsna Himself accepts the form of a devotee to relish and taste it fully.
Although Krsna is the reservoir of all pleasure, He has a special intention to taste Himself by accepting the form of a devotee. It is to be concluded that although Lord Caitanya is present in the form of a devotee, He is Krsna Himself. Therefore Vaisnavas sing, sri-krsna-caitanya radha-krsna nahe anya: Radha and Krsna combined together are Sri Krsna Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Caitanyakhyam prakatam adhuna tad-dvayam caikyam aptam. Sri Svarupa-damodara Gosvami has said that Radha and Krsna assumed oneness in the form of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.
ithe bhakta-bhava dhare caitanya gosani
’bhakta-svarupa’ tanra nityananda-bhai
ithe—for this reason; bhakta-bhava—the ecstasy of a devotee; dhare—accepts; caitanya—Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu; gosani—the transcendental teacher; bhakta-svarupa—exactly like a pure devotee; tanra—His; nityananda—Lord Nityananda; bhai—brother.
For this reason Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, the supreme teacher, accepts the form of a devotee and accepts Lord Nityananda as His elder brother.
’bhakta-avatara’ tanra acarya-gosani
ei tina tattva sabe prabhu kari’ gai
bhakta-avatara—incarnation as a devotee; tanra—His; acarya-gosani—the supreme teacher, Advaita Acarya Prabhu; ei—all these; tina—three; tattva—truths; sabe—all; prabhu—the predominator; kari’-by such understanding; gai—we sing.
Sri Advaita Acarya is Lord Caitanya’s incarnation as a devotee. Therefore these three tattvas [Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Nityananda Prabhu and Advaita Gosani] are the predominators, or masters.
Gosani means gosvami. A person who has full control over the senses and mind is called a gosvami or gosani. One who does not have such control is called godasa, or a servant of the senses, and cannot become a spiritual master. A spiritual master who actually has control over the mind and senses is called gosvami. Although the gosvami title has become a hereditary designation for unscrupulous men, actually the title gosani, or gosvami, began from Sri Rupa Gosvami, who presented himself as an ordinary grhastha and minister in government service but became gosvami when he was actually elevated by the instruction of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Therefore gosvami is not a hereditary title but refers to one’s qualifications. When one is highly elevated in spiritual advancement, regardless of wherefrom he comes, he may be called gosvami. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Sri Nityananda Prabhu and Sri Advaita Gosani Prabhu are natural gosvamis because They belong to the visnu-tattva category. As such, all of Them are prabhus (“predominators” or “masters”), and They are sometimes called Caitanya Gosani, Nityananda Gosani and Advaita Gosani. Unfortunately Their so-called descendants who do not have the qualifications of gosvamis have accepted this title as a hereditary designation or a professional degree. That is not in accord with the sastric injunctions.
eka mahaprabhu, ara prabhu duijana
dui prabhu seve mahaprabhura carana
eka mahaprabhu—one Mahaprabhu, or the supreme predominator; ara prabhu duijana—and the other two (Nityananda and Advaita) are two prabhus (masters); dui prabhu—the two prabhus (Nityananda and Advaita Gosani); seve—serve; mahaprabhura—of the supreme predominator, Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu; carana—the lotus feet.
One of Them is Mahaprabhu, and the other two are prabhus. These two prabhus serve the lotus feet of Mahaprabhu.
Although Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Sri Nityananda Prabhu and Sri Advaita Prabhu all belong to the same Visnu category, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is nevertheless accepted as the Supreme, and the other two prabhus engage in His transcendental loving service to teach ordinary living entities that every one of us is subordinate to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. In another place in Caitanya-caritamrta (Adi 5.142) it is said, ekale isvara krsna, ara saba bhrtya: the only supreme master is Krsna, and all others, both visnu-tattva and jiva-tattva, engage in the service of the Lord. Both the visnu-tattva (as Nityananda Prabhu and Advaita) and the jiva-tattva (srivasadi-gaura-bhakta-vrnda) engage in the service of the Lord, but one must distinguish between the visnu-tattva servitors and the jiva-tattva servitors. The jiva-tattva servitor, the spiritual master, is actually the servitor God. As explained in previous verses, in the absolute world there are no such differences, yet one must observe these differences in order to distinguish the Supreme from His subordinates.
ei tina tattva,--’sarvaradhya’ kari mani
caturtha ye bhakta-tattva,--’aradhaka’ jani
ei tina tattva—all three of these truths; sarva-aradhya—worshipable by all living entities; kari mani—accepting such; caturtha—fourth; ye—who is; bhakta-tattva—in the category of devotees; aradhaka—worshiper; jani—I understand.
The three predominators [Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Nityananda Prabhu and Advaita Prabhu] are worshipable by all living entities, and the fourth principle [Sri Gadadhara Prabhu] is to be understood as Their worshiper.
In his Anubhasya, Sri Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura, describing the truth about the Panca-tattva, explains that we can understand that Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is the supreme predominator and that Nityananda Prabhu and Advaita Prabhu are His subordinates but are also predominators. Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is the Supreme Lord, and Nityananda Prabhu and Advaita Prabhu are manifestations of the Supreme Lord. All of Them are visnu-tattva, the Supreme, and are therefore worshipable by the living entities. Although the other two tattvas within the category of Panca-tattva-namely, sakti-tattva and jiva-tattva, represented by Gadadhara and Srivasa-are worshipers of the Supreme Lord, they are in the same category because they eternally engage in the transcendental loving service of the Lord.
srivasadi yata koti koti bhakta-gana
’suddha-bhakta’-tattva-madhye tan-sabara ganana
srivasa-adi—devotees headed by Srivasa Thakura; yata—all others; koti koti—innumerable; bhakta-gana—devotees; suddha-bhakta—pure devotees; tattva-madhye—in the truth; tan-sabara—all of them; ganana—counted.
There are innumerable pure devotees of the Lord, headed by Srivasa Thakura, who are known as unalloyed devotees.
gadadhara-panditadi prabhura ’sakti’-avatara
’antaranga-bhakta’ kari’ ganana yanhara
gadadhara—of the name Gadadhara; pandita—of the learned scholar; adi—headed by; prabhura—of the Lord; sakti—potency; avatara—incarnation; antaranga—very confidential; bhakta—devotee; kari’-accepting; ganana—counting; yanhara—of whom.
The devotees headed by Gadadhara Pandita are to be considered incarnations of the internal potency of the Lord. They are confidential devotees engaged in the service of the Lord.
In connection with verses sixteen and seventeen, Sri Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura explains in his Anubhasya: “There are specific symptoms by which the internal devotees and the unalloyed or pure devotees are to be known. All unalloyed devotees are sakti-tattvas, or potencies of the Lord. Some of them are situated in conjugal love and others in filial affection, fraternity and servitude. Certainly all of them are devotees, but by making a comparative study it is found that the devotees or potencies who are engaged in conjugal love are better situated than the others. Thus devotees who are in a relationship with the Supreme Personality of Godhead in conjugal love are considered to be the most confidential devotees of Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Those who engage in the service of Lord Nityananda Prabhu and Lord Advaita Prabhu generally have relationships of parental love, fraternity, servitude and neutrality. When such devotees develop great attachment for Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, they too become situated within the intimate circle of devotees in conjugal love.” This gradual development of devotional service is described by Sri Narottama dasa Thakura as follows:
gauranga balite habe pulaka sarira
hari hari balite nayane ba’be nira
ara kabe nitaicanda karuna karibe
samsara-vasana mora kabe tuccha habe
visaya chadiya kabe suddha habe mana
kabe hama heraba sri-vrndavana
rupa-raghunatha-pade ha-ibe akuti
kabe hama bujhaba sri-yugala-piriti
“When will there be eruptions on my body as soon as I chant the name of Lord Caitanya, and when will there be incessant torrents of tears as soon as I chant the holy names Hare Krsna? When will Lord Nityananda be merciful toward me and free me from all desires for material enjoyment? When will my mind be completely freed from all contamination of desires for material pleasure? Only at that time will it be possible for me to understand Vrndavana. Only if I become attached to the instructions given by the six Gosvamis, headed by Rupa Gosvami and Raghunatha dasa Gosvami, will it be possible for me to understand the conjugal love of Radha and Krsna.” By attachment to the devotional service of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu one immediately comes to the ecstatic position. When he develops his love for Nityananda Prabhu he is freed from all attachment to the material world, and at that time he becomes eligible to understand the Lord’s pastimes in Vrndavana. In that condition, when one develops his love for the six Gosvamis, he can understand the conjugal love between Radha and Krsna. These are the different stages of a pure devotee’s promotion to conjugal love in the service of Radha and Krsna in an intimate relationship with Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.
yan-saba lana prabhura nitya vihara
yan-saba lana prabhura kirtana-pracara
yan-saba lana karena prema asvadana
yan-saba lana dana kare prema-dhana
yan-saba—all; lana—taking company; prabhura—of the Lord; nitya—eternal; vihara—pastime; yan-saba—all those who are; lana—taking company; prabhura—of the Lord; kirtana—sankirtana; pracara—movement; yan-saba—persons with whom; lana—in accompaniment; karena—He does; prema—love of God; asvadana—taste; yan-saba—those who are; lana—in accompaniment; dana kare—gives in charity; prema-dhana—love of Godhead.
The internal devotees or potencies are all eternal associates in the pastimes of the Lord. Only with them does the Lord advent to propound the sankirtana movement, only with them does the Lord taste the mellow of conjugal love, and only with them does He distribute this love of God to people in general.
Distinguishing between pure devotees and internal or confidential devotees, Sri Rupa Gosvami, in his book Upadesamrta, traces the following gradual process of development. Out of many thousands of karmis, one is better when he is situated in perfect Vedic knowledge. Out of many such learned scholars and philosophers, one who is actually liberated from material bondage is better, and out of many such persons who are actually liberated, one who is a devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead is considered to be the best. Among the many such transcendental lovers of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the gopis are the best, and among the gopis Srimati Radhika is the best. Srimati Radhika is very dear to Lord Krsna, and similarly Her ponds, namely, Syama-kunda and Radha-kunda, are also very dear to the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura comments in his Anubhasya that among the five tattvas, two are energies (sakti-tattva) and the three others are energetic (saktiman tattva). Unalloyed and internal devotees are both engaged in the favorable culture of Krsna consciousness untinged by philosophical speculation or fruitive activities. They are all understood to be pure devotees, and those among them who simply engage in conjugal love are called madhurya-bhaktas, or internal devotees. The loving services in parental love, fraternity and servitude are included in conjugal love of God. In conclusion, therefore, every confidential devotee is a pure devotee of the Lord.
Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu enjoys His pastimes with His immediate expansion Nityananda Prabhu. His pure devotees and His three purusa incarnations, namely, Karanodakasayi Visnu, Garbhodakasayi Visnu and Ksirodakasayi Visnu, always accompany the Supreme Lord to propound the sankirtana movement.