Guranga and Murarigupta
BY: SUN STAFF
Jan 04, CANADA (SUN) A five-part series from 'Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu', edited by Srimad Bhakti Vaibhav Puri Goswami Maharaj, Founder Acharya of the Sri Krishna Chaitanya Mission, Ganjam, Orissa.
After conferring the boon on Sridhara, the Lord Gauranga manifested Himself before Murari Gupta as Sri Ramchandra with His bow and arrow with His consort Sita Devi, on the left and Sri Lakshman on the right. On seeing the desired object of his worship, Murari Gupta fell into a swoon. When brought back to his consciousness by the Lord, he began to weep so vehemently out of Divine Love that it melted the hearts of all the devotees assembled there.
Being demanded by the Lord to ask for a boon, Murari prayed with all humility "O Lord, by Thou pleased to grant me this boon that I may sing thy glories in every birth and that I may be the servant of Thy Eternal Associates wherever and whenever they may descend."
"O Lord, I do not crave for that salvation which wipes out the
relationship that exists between master and servant in the field of
devotion. I do not yearn for piety, wealth, passion or even freedom from
bondage, but vouchsafe unto me. O Lord, that I may be a particle of dust
at Thy Lotus feet."
The Lord Gauranga was graciously pleased to confer upon Murari Gupta,
the boon solicited with this pithy remark that he was aptly named "Murari
Gupta" because the Supreme Lord Murari (Sri Krishna) was dwelling
secretly in the innermost recess of his heart.
After granting the desired boon to Murari Gupta, Gauranga said, "Thakur
Haridas belongs to the same class that of Mine. The attribute, Satchit-
Ananda of God-head, was equally applicable to Haridas as the Divine
quality manifests itself in a sincere and loving devotee. in his unalloyed
existence, whether he is in the spiritual or mundane plane, just as a piece
of iron acquires. 'Tadatma' or same quality of blazing fire by coming in
close touch with it so a devotee acquires the same quality of God-head
when he is thoroughly imbued with the confidential loving service to Him.
Though Thakur Haridas had been suffering from terrible persecutions at
the hands of his persecutors, he prayed to the Lord not only to forgive
them but also to do them eternal good. So the Lord Himself had to bear
the brunt of the persecutions on His own body in order to save Haridas
and having a glimpse of Lord Gauranga's Grand Revelation, Thakur
Haridas fell into a swoon under the impulse of Supreme Ecstatic Love
which is quite distinct from mundane epileptic fit or pseudo trance. Hence
a Mahabhagavata was initiated to have a darsan of the Supreme Lord Sri
Krishna who revealed His own beautiful Human form on him in his trance.
Regaining his consciousness, Thakur Haridas began to address the Lord,
"O Lord of infinite mercy, I am the most unworthy of the devotees, I am
the most untouchable of untouchables, being born in a low caste non-
Hindu family. The very sight of mine is sin and the very touch of mine
requires purification in the Ganga water. Even without my remembrance of
Thy Lotus feet. Thou hast saved me from all perils. I, therefore, beseech
These, O Lord of unbounded ocean of mercy, that I may be the recipient of
remains of dishes of Thy most beloved servitors."
Hearing him Lord
Gauranga said, "O Haridas He who keeps your company even for a single
moment and shows loving regard to you, will surely attain Me. As you have
no offence against Me and My devotees, I bless you this day for your
devotional love for Lord Krishna." By this Lord Gauranga teaches us that
Sri Krishna is attainable only by single minded loving devotion i.e. having
intense yearning for and pinning agony of separation from Him. No
amount of wealth, lineage beauty, austerity, scholasticism, energy,
splendour authority, strength, manliness, wisdom of Astangayoga is
competent enough to please the Supreme Lord Bhagavan. Whatever caste
of community a devotee may belong to, he stands superior to all others,
who are void of Krishna Bhakti. Even the remembrance of Thakur Haridas
destroys all kinds of sins. Not to speak of the demigods who are aspirants
of his touch, even the Ganga yearns for his plunge in her water. Even the
very sight of Thakur Haridas, not to speak of his touch, delivers one from
the bondage of Maya.
Hearing the blessing voices of the Lord Gauranga about Thakur Haridas,
the devotees began to weep out of intense love for the Lord.
Sri Gauranga then reminded Sri Advaita Acharya of his fasting at one
night owing to his failure of finding a Bhakti interpretation of a sloka in the
Gita and His revealing to him, in dream, the real reading and meaning of
the above sloka.
When all the devotees were blessed with their respective boons by Lord
Gauranga except Mukunda Datta, Pandit Srivas asked the Lord as to why
Mukunda, His favourite musician should be deprived of His blessings and
requested the Lord that he might be accepted as a recipient of His Mercy,
after adequate punishment for his offence if any. At this Gauranga said
that Mukunda does not deserve His blessings as he was (a chit-jadasamanvaya-
vadi) an irrational compromiser between spirit and matter. An
opportunist some times advocates the theory of illusion, sometimes
glorifies Bhakti and sometimes denounces Bhakti supporting the life-less
non-devotional activities of Karmi, Jnani yogi to be superior to the
devotional practices of pure devotees. Therefore, he was debarred from
the delight of Lord's Darsan. Mukunda Datta too heard Gauranga and said
to himself, "I have been really guilty as an offender at the Lotus feet of
Bhakti Devi, the Delight giving potency or Hladini Sakti of the Supreme
Lord Krishna. Bhakti is but the eternal function of an unalloyed self, always
searching after the devotional service of the Supreme Lord Sri Krishna to
His pleasure without the slightest tinges of desire for elevation or
salvation. Ignoring this truth, I have misidentified myself with body and
mind and have; therefore, taken recourse to the defective, deceptive and
fluctuating principles of the illusionists for which act of disservice or
offence I must put an end to my life. But before adopting this desperate
measure, I must know, if there is any hope of my receiving the Lord's
grace in my birth to come."
He then asked pandit Srivas to implore the
Lord for him, whether he has any chance of receiving His grace in any life
to come and to this the Lord replied, "Mukunda should have to wait for a
crore of births to receive My grace." Hearing this Mukunda began to dance
with intense love for the Lord. As a result of his devotional fervour
Mukunda could over-come the almost unbounded span of one crore of
births. When he regained his consciousness from Love intoxicated swoon,
the Lord said, "O Mukunda, you have knocked out one core of births by
simply putting your firm conviction in My words. You have captured My
heart. Your mind and body are surcharged with devotional fervour for Me.
You are My eternal servant. I always dance on the tip of your tongue and
hear you sing." Hearing this Mukunda, felt remorse for his past nondevotional
aptitude and considered himself as the most pitiable wretch in
the world void of pure devotion and hence deprived of the delight resulting
in the Darsan of the Lord.
Then the Lord Gauranga out of His infinite mercy
began to console him. "Mukunda!" you are very dear to Me for your
unflinching devotion. I descend whenever and wherever you sing the
glories of Krishna. What you have said so long is nothing but truth, There
can be no delight for you in My Darsan without Bhakti. Whoever ignores
Bhakti incurs My displeasure which stands in the way of his delight in My
Darsan." Hearing these blessings of Gauranga on Sri Mukunda Datta all
the devotees were thrilled with joy and began to praise his good luck.
During the grand revelation of Gauranga every devotee beheld his
respective object of worship in the Lord Gauranga in proportion to his
loving devotion to Him.
Gauranga then called for Narayani the fortunate four year old niece of
Pandit Srivas and with grace and pleasure, offered her the remnants of His
Then Gauranga along with His followers held Sri Nama Yajna every night
in the house of Pandit Srivas. While the Sankirtan went on, no outsider was
allowed to peep or enter into the compound of Srivas Pandit. One night.
Srivasa's mother-in-law, who had kept herself hidden in corner of the room
was turned out by the Pandit for her anti-devotional aptitude. Men of
malicious disposition, finding the door shut against them cast aspersions
on the spot-less character of the Lord's devotees, to which the latter paid
no heed at all.
Once Gopala Chapal being refused admission into the compound, out of
wrath and jealousy, deposited some objectionable articles such as wine,
flesh etc. outside the gate of Pandit Srivas For this offence done to Srivas
Pandit, Gopal Chapal was attacked with leprosy and suffered a lot for a
Not being allowed to enter into the court yard of Srivas Pandit, to
witness Sankirtan a foulmouthed Brahmin tore his sacred thread in a fit of
rage and cursed Gauranga saying." Let your worldly happiness be at an
end." Gauranga accepted the curse with great pleasure. By this Gauranga
teaches us that complete destruction of worldly desires and prosperity is
the significance of God's Grace.
One night an old ascetic, living entirely on milk, earnestly requesting
Pandit Srivas, obtained entrance into the fold, but was turned out by
Gauranga as a foreign element. Gauranga remarked. 'No amount of severe
austerities, scepticism or renunciation is competent enough to please Me. I
am pleased only by unadulterated devotion." The Brahmachari accepted
this chastisement with good grace and was afterwards redeemed by the
Lord Gauranga when he surrendered himself entirely to His Lotus feet.
One night when Gauranga and His devotees were lost the ecstatic dance
and chanting of the Holy name of Sri Krishna, the only son of Srivas Pandit
breathed his last.
Although the members of his family were overwhelmed
with grief and began to lament, Srivas immediately stopped them to do so,
lest Gauranga's ecstasy would be disturbed. Gauranga apprised of this
mishap. Late at night, He went to the place of occurrence with His
associates and had the mystery of this sudden departure unravelled from
the lips of the departed soul who addressed the Lord with the following
ever memorable grief killing words. "I am a jiva soul. At the will of the
Lord, I came here and got Pandit Srivas and Malini Devi as my parents.
The span of my life came to an end. At the will of the Lord, I am now
departing to another world. Please bless me, O Lord, that I may be your
eternal servitor wherever I shall be born. I offer my humble prostrations at
your Lotus feet and your associates, to be merciful on me." The soul left
the body amidst loud cheer of 'Haribol'. The members of Sriva's family
were relieved of their anxiety and grief.
There lived Suklambar
Brahmachari in Navadweep, a true devotee of the Lord. He lived an
exemplary simple life solely consecrated to the service of the Supreme
Lord. One day, while he was returning to his hermitage after begging.
Gauranga forcibly thrust His hand into his alms bag and ate a morsel of
rice particles out of it, to establish the sastric truth that neither riches nor
the rich dishes of affluent atheists can have any charm for the Lord, who
always accepts with great relish the humblest offerings made with loving
Once when Gauranga was narrating the glories of the Holy name to His
devotees. a student tauntingly remarked. "Is this not simply a highly
exaggeration? Is salvation possible only by chanting Name to the
exclusion of other religious practices? Such dogmatism or sectarianism
should find no favour among the learned Pandits. To consider the glories
of the Holy Name as merely hyperbolic or eulogistic is a great offence
against the Holy Name." Thereupon the Lord Gauranga indignantly
exclaimed to him.
harer nama harer nama
harer namaiva kevalam
kalau nasty eva nasty eva
nasty eva gatir anyatha
One day, Gauranga recited the above sloka to His disciples and
explained to them. "In this Kaliyuga the Supreme Lord, Krishna has
revealed Himself in the form of 'Nama'. The chanting of the Holy Name is
the only panacea for world disease. To convince the people, the Name of
Hari has been repeated thrice.
Hari's Name alone and nothing else can dispel the gloom of ignorance
from the people and liberate them from the bondage of maya. The world
'Nasthi', is repeated thrice to leave no room for doubt. The fact that those
who consider otherwise and take recourse to other processes than the
devotional path are doomed to destruction."
"A devotee willing to chant the Holy Name must feel himself to be
humbler than a blade of grass; he must be more forbearing than a tree; he
must not give way to lust and anger despite the cause of provocation; he
should give due respect to others and must not covet any for himself."
While preaching the tenets of Gauranga, Nityananda and Haridas
encountered the two brothers Jagai and Madhai who had left no sins, vices
or crimes uncommitted. They assaulted the two innocent missionaries of
Divine Love. This assault caused the fore-head of Nityananda to bleed
profusely. "Gauranga Mahaprabhu came instantly to the spot to punish the
The ruffians got terribly afraid and fell prostrate at His Lotus feet to
forgive and save them. Gauranga directed them to seek the mercy of
Nityananda, at whose feet they have committed serious offences.
When they did so, Gauranga promised to take upon Himself all their
past sins provided they would promise not to commit any sin in future.
With overflooded tears of repentance, the two ruffians responded with
submission. The iron was thus changed into pure gold by the philosopher's
miraculous touch-stone and thence forward they led the purest life of
One day to have relief from the fatigue caused by the scorching rays of
the mid-day sun, Gauranga took rest in a devotee's house and sowed a
mango seed in his compound. Lo! In an instant sprang up a mango tree
laden with ripe delicious and beautiful fruit with which Gauranga feasted
the devotees those were present to their satisfaction.
Since then, He used to perform such mango festivals everyday after
Hari Sankirtan for one year. The place where this miraculous festival was
held is still known as "Amrahatta."
Once Gauranga with His devotees went far away from His house, on a
Krishna Sankirtan Mission, when the sky was suddenly overcast with dark
thick clouds And the rumbling noise being accompanied with lightening
and thunders began to threaten the atmosphere. Gauranga immediately
desired the clouds to disperse in the interest of the Nama Sankirtan.
Where this incident happened is still known as 'Megherchar'.
Sri Gauranga named Murari Gupta, a faithful devotee of Sri Ram,
Hanuman. One day Gauranga went to his house and assumed the form of
the Divine Board lifted up a water pot with His teeth. Intoxicated with
Divine Love Murari Gupta carried the Divine Manifestation of the Lord upon
his shoulders and went about in his compound dancing. By this He
condemned the anti-devotional propaganda. God is void of any Name,
Form, Attribute, Entourage pastimes and Realms.
Sachi Devi in a dream saw Nimai and Nitai on one side and Krishna,
Balarama and the Tutelary Deities of her house on the other side,
snatching from one another the offerings. She revealed her dream to Nitai
and invited him to dine with Gauranga. While both Nimai and Nitai were
partaking of their meals served by Sachi Devi she saw that they were no
other than the veritable Deities, Krishna and Balarama. She fell into swoon
transported with unspeakable joy.
On another night the sight of the full moon filled the heart of Gauranga
with the thoughts of Vrindavan and He began to play the flute being
surcharged with that emotion. None-else heard that melodious sound
except Sachi Devi who came out and found her son Nimai seated on the
threshold of the Vishnu temple. Then she no longer heard any sound of the
flute, but beheld a halo of the moon shining round her son's head.
Advaita Acharya being deprived of Gauranga's blessings devised a plan
to obtain His favour. He retired to his house at Santipur where he began to
expound Mayavada Jnana to his disciples. When Gauranga came to know
of this, He hastened there and in a fit of rage began to give him blows
saying, "What makes you, Acharya to establish the superiority of Jnana
over Bhakti cult? Is it the reason for which you have invoked Me from My
Supreme Seat Vaikuntha?" Advaita's desire was thus fulfilled, as he
received the loving chastisement from the Lord Himself. By this Gauranga
teaches us, that He has appeared to establish Bhagavat-Dharma of the
religion of Divine Love all over the world.
One day, Gauranga was heard crying out "Pundarika, Pundarika" other
could not make out the real significance of it. Then Gauranga told His
devotees that Pundarika-Vidyanidhi , a wonderful devotee from Chitagong
would soon visit Sridham Navadweep. Accordingly Pundarika arrived at
Navadweep in a short time. He was saturated with Krishna Prema in his
heart of hearts. His strong loving nature was hardly recognisable because
of his exterior splendid garments. Mukunda who knew Vidyanidhi beforehand
wanted to see him accompanied by Pandit Gadadhara, his most
intimate friend. Gadadhara a life-long celibate, wholly detached from the
world, mistook Vidyanidhi, for a man of the world to deliver Gadadhara
from this great offence. Mukunda recited a sloka from Srimad Bhagavata
to show how deep Pundarika's love for Sri Krishna was. Hearing the sloka
Vidyanidhi, was so much transported with ecstatic joy that he fell into a
trance and symptoms of Divine emotions began to manifest themselves in
his body. To make amends for his offence against Vidyanidhi, Gadadhara
made up his mind to be initiated by him and informed Gauranga of his
pious desire to which Mahaprabhu gave His consent.
Sri Gauranga one night staged an unprecedented wonderful dramatic
performance known as "Dana Leela" (the Divine Leela of gift) at the house
of Chandrasekhar Acharya His elder devotee. The dramatic personnel were
Sri Advaitacharya, Sri Nityananda, Pandit Srivas, Thakur Haridas, Pandit
Gadadhara and others. They played their respective roles on the stage
extempore under the Divine inspiration. Sri Gauranga played the part of
Rukmini, the consort of Sri Krishna at Dvaraka. This was the first dramatic
performance on the Bengali stage.
Devananda Pandit a learned Brahmin living at Navadweep, had a
sanskrit school. He used to give Bhagavat discourses to a large audience
daily. Though an empiric reader of the Bhagavat he failed to realise that
Krishna is one with, name, form and attributes. He also failed to
understand the non-difference between a Bhakta Bhagavata and Grantha
Bhagavat both being Divine. One day Srivas Pandit went to listen to
Devananda's discourse on Bhagavata. On hearing Sri Krishna Leela, Srivas
was so much intoxicated with Divine love that he could not refrain himself
and so began to weep out of love in-separation from Sri Krishna.
Devananda regarding it as unpleasant disparaged him to his pupils who
turned him out of the compound.
Sri Gauranga with His associates while passing by that way saw
Devananda reading Bhagavat to a distinguished gathering of Pandits.
Gauranga at once flew into a rage and exclaimed "What right has this
fellow to read the Bhagavat and thus delude the audience with false and
farfetched interpretations? Pride in high lineage empiric scholarship,
mundane piety or purity is always an effective bar to the right
comprehension of the Bhagavat. It is only understandable by a devotee
who renders sincere service and submissively listens to the Sad-Guru. Now
he enlightens only himself with this kind of esoteric meaning.
It is a matter
of great regret that Devananda not only lacks the above qualities but also
commits a great offence at the feet of Pandit Srivas by defaming him the
other day. He is a mere dry panditic wrangler of the empiric school and
has therefore no right to read the Bhagavat." Devananda fell down at the
Lotus feet of Sri Gauranga and begged to be forgiven. Gauranga advised
him to ask for the pardon of Pandit Srivas at whose feet he had committed
offence and he acted accordingly.
Gauranga through His disciples preached His Nam Sankirtan cult in
important towns and villages till His renunciation. As a result of it
thousands of people joined His banner. The complete success of His
Doctrine of Divine Love stirred up malicious disposition of some of the
Navadweep Pandits who brought a charge against Him to Chand Kazi, the
then Governor of the city. The Kazi polluted the Holy Nama-Sankirtan by
smashing into pieces the Mridangas of the Sankirtan party and introduced
prohibition. The place where the incident occurred is still known as Khol
Bhangar Danga. There upon Gauranga took out a huge procession of
Nama Sankirtan in which almost all the citizens of Navadweep joined, each
holding a lighted torch. Frightened by the huge demonstrations and the
loud chant of the Holy Name, Kazi concealed himself inside the house.
Gauranga sent for the Kazi who came out and met Him.
The Kazi had long conversation with Gauranga about some topic of vital
importance. When Gauranga asked as to why there was the slaughter of
animals, especially cows and oxen in his jurisdiction, the Kazi replied that
it was enjoined in the Quran to kill animals for those who are attached to
worldly pleasures and not for those who follow the path of abstention. He
supported his statement by a reference to Vedic sanctions to which the
Lord objected saying cow killing is strictly prohibited in the Vedas which
declare that old oxen but not cows, are to be sacrificed in order to be
revivified and rejuvenated by Vedic Mantras. But such psychic powers are
sadly lacking in the Brahmins of Kali Yuga.
Further, the Kazi made no secret of the punishment he received in his
sleep in the shape of nail scratches on his breast at the hands of a grim
lion faced human figure grinding his teeth and reprimanding him for his
anti-religious act on the very night of day he broke into pieces the
'Mridangas' of Sankirtan party. He also added that some of his peons who
had been out on the anti-theistic errand had their beards burnt by
meteorlike flame from heaven and some of them, in spite of unwillingness,
repeat, Rama, Krishna, Hari as if by spell. The utterance of Holy Names of
Sri Krishna thrice, in this way, purified and melted the heart of Kazi who
implored the Lord for His mercy and promised Him to abstain from all
further desecrations of His Divine religion and to punish any one for
neglecting duty of his community with social punishment. Moved with the
truth of the doctrine of Gauranga, the Kazi gladly joined the banner of His
Universal religion. The Kazi and his descendents were staunch followers of
the Lord for many generations. The conversion of Chand Kazi not only
created thrilling sensation all over Navadweep but also attracted
thousands of unbelievers to flock under the Lord's banner of Nama
After converting the Kazi, Gauranga with Sankirtan party passed
through the quarters of conch sellers and weavers of Navadweep and at
last arrived at Sridhar's house. They then drank with great relish a little
quantity of water from patched-up iron pot. Drinking the water He
showered His choicest blessings upon Sridhara. Gauranga asked him the
cause of his willingness like others, he did not become affluent by
worshipping minor Gods. To this Sridhara said, "Eating, drinking, merry
making, sleeping and such like sensual pleasures are common factors both
in man and animal according to their past deeds. But to please Hari is the
exclusive right of human beings a right which is only possible for an
Once Gauranga and Nityananda walked to Santipur to see Advaita
Acharya. On their way they met a pseudo Sanyasi who was a prodigal and
a drunkard. At Lalitpur. He blessed Gauranga to be happy with all sorts of
worldly enjoyments. Gauranga summarily discarded them saying, "Real
benediction lies not in the achievement of mundane or celestial happiness,
but in the attainment of eternal Krishna Prema, which is the be-all and
end-all of human existence." So saying both of them left the place in
Once when the Lord Gauranga had first paused for a while after His long
Sankirtan dance a Brahmin lady touched, caught hold of and repeatedly
took the dust of His Lotus feet. This was too much for Him to bear. Being
greatly mortified, He threw Himself in to the river Ganga and was rescued
by Nityananda and Haridas. He spent that night in the house of Sri Vijay
Acharya and was brought home next morning by His devotees.
Once a sage was offering his prayers standing in water. When a boy out
his childish pranks dragged the legs of the sage under the water, the sage
became angry and cursed the body to be born as a crocodile. When the
boy besought the sages mercy, the sage pardoned him and said that he
would be delivered by the touch of the Lotus feet of Sri Krishna who could
soon appear as Sri Gauranga. Now while passing the lake near Godrum, it
happened for Gauranga to touch the crocodile with His feet and the
crocodile soon changed into a beautiful boy who went to his own place
chanting the glories of Sri Gauranga.
After sometime Sri Gauranga converted a Mohammedan tailor into a
great Vaishnava as the latter used to stitch the tattered clothes of Pandit
Srivas, His intimate associate. Thereby He showed that the slightest
service to Vaishnavas entitles one to attain the grace the Lord.
One day, Sri Gauranga was chanting the Name of Gopi, instead of
Krishna in His home. A student of atheistic views came to Him and not
knowing that it was the outcome of unbearable separation in love for
Krishna exhorted Him to say Krishna instead of Gopi. His words enkindled
in Gauranga deep passionate love for Krishna which prepared Him to
change the student in a frenzied mood with a staff in hand. The student
took to his heels and reported the matter to his fellow students who,
forming a league, began to scoff at the Lord and even went so far as to
threaten Him with assault. This impious conduct on the part of students
fomented by their professors who were of the same staff, paved the way
for their eternal condemnation.
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