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Krishna-karnamrta (RTF)

"A great Vaisnava sannyasi named Bilvamangala Thakura, who is also known as Lilasuka. He intensely desired to enter into the eternal pastimes of the Lord, and he lived at Vrndavana for seven hundred years in the vicinity of Brahma-kunda, a still-existing bathing tank in Vrndavana. The history of Bilvamangala Thakura is given in a book called Sri Vallabha-digvijaya. He appeared in the eighth century of the Saka Era in the province of Dravida and was the chief disciple of Visnusvami. In a list of temples and monasteries kept in Sankaracarya's monastery in Dvaraka, Bilvamangala is mentioned as the founder of the Dvarakadhisa temple there. He entrusted the service of his Deity to Hari Brahmacari, a disciple of Vallabha Bhatta.

Bilvamangala Thakura actually entered into the transcendental pastimes of Lord Krsna. He has recorded his transcendental experiences and appreciation in the book known as Krsna-karnamrta. In the beginning of that book he has offered his obeisances to his different gurus, and it is to be noted that he has adored them all equally. The first spiritual master mentioned is Cintamani, who was one of his instructing spiritual masters because she first showed him the spiritual path. Cintamani was a prostitute with whom Bilvamangala was intimate earlier in his life. She gave him the inspiration to begin on the path of devotional service, and because she convinced him to give up material existence to try for perfection by loving Krsna, he has first offered his respects to her. Next he offers his respects to his initiating spiritual master, Somagiri, and then to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who was also his instructing spiritual master. He explicitly mentions Bhagavan, who has peacock feathers on His crown, because the Lord of Vrndavana, Krsna the cowherd boy, used to come to Bilvamangala to talk with him and supply him with milk. In his adoration of Sri Krsna, the Personality of Godhead, he describes that Jayasri, the goddess of fortune, Srimati Radharani, takes shelter in the shade of His lotus feet to enjoy the transcendental rasa of nuptial love. The complete treatise Krsna-karnamrta is dedicated to the transcendental pastimes of Sri Krsna and Srimati Radharani. It is a book to be read and understood by the most elevated devotees of Sri Krsna."

Caitanya-caritamrta, Adi lila 1:57

"When Bilvamangala Thakura was going to Vrndavana, he was still attracted to women. One night he stayed at the house of a very rich merchant, and the merchant's wife told her husband that Bilvamangala Thakura was attracted to her. She asked her husband what to do, and the merchant simply said, "Serve him." Finally Bilvamangala Thakura came to his senses, and he thought, "These eyes are my enemies." When the beautiful woman approached him, Bilvamangala Thakura said, "Mother, please give me the pins out of your hair. I am very mad after the beauty of women. So let me pluck out my eyes." In this way, he blinded himself. Although he could not see, in Vrndavana he was supplied milk by Krsna Himself. Thus he personally realized Krsna through bhakti and wrote of his personal experience. He wrote, "Mukti is not a very important thing. She is always at my service with folded hands, saying, 'My dear sir, what can I do for you?' " Thus a devotee is not very anxious for mukti because he is already liberated. If a man has a million dollars, why should he hanker after ten rupees?"

Teachings of Lord Kapila, Verse 32