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Sri Gadadhara Pandita Disappearance

Today is the super excellent auspicious disappearance day of Sri Gadadhara Pandita who is nearest and dearest to Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. In radha-krishna-lila, Gadadhara Pandita is the direct original manifestation of Srimati Radhika. In Chaitanya-charitamrita grantha, it is stated that there are two Gadhadaras. One is Gadadhara Pandita and the other is Gadadhara Dasa, who is an expansion of Srimati Radhika.

Chaitanya Mahaprabhu is Krishna who has not taken Srimati Radhika's bhava (mood) and kanti (complexion). This is because in krishna-lila, Krishna cannot completely realise Srimati Radhika’s highest mood: Her divya-unmada (transcendental madness) in madanakhya-mahabhava.

And in this Kali-yuga, Krishna appears in the form of Shachinandana Gaurahari, taking the complexion and mood of Srimati Radhika.

prema-bhakti śikhāite āpane avatari rādhā-bhāva-kānti dui aṅgīkāra kari’ śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya-rūpe kaila avatāra ei ta’ pañcama ślokera artha paracāra

Chaitanya-charitamrita (Adi-lila, 99-100)

[To promulgate prema-bhakti, Krishna appeared as Sri Krishna Chaitanya with the mood and complexion of Sri Radha. Thus I have explained the meaning of the fifth verse.]

In Chaitanya-charitamrita, Krishnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami explains that Krishna stole Srimati Radhika’s mood and Her complexion by manifesting as Shachinandana Gaurahari. Krishna took Srimati Radhika’s mood, vamya-bhava, because in the realm of prema, prema-rajya, vamya-bhava (left wing mood), vamyata, is very important, especially in parakiya-bhava (paramour mood).

Although Krishna took Srimati Radhika’s parakiya-bhava, Srimati Radhika did not lose anything. As stated in shastra, in prema-rajya, the realm of divine love, everything is infinite, thus can never lose anything. Like the rule of mathematics, infinity minus infinity equals infinity. In the same way, everything in the transcendental world is infinite. Although Krishna took Srimati Radhika’s vamya-bhava, She still remained with Her full vamya-bhava.

Some people might think that Krishna has taken away Srimati Radhika’s vamya-bhava. And, Gadadhara Pandita who is Srimati Radhika, has now lost it. However this is actually not true. Srila Gurudeva very nicely explained how Srimati Radhika still has this vamya-bhava and how Gadadhara Pandita also has this vamya-bhava. This is because love has two moods simultaneously occurring, one is dakshina-bhava (submissive mood) and the other vamya-bhava (left wing mood). And these two moods always go side by side, like a flowing river, with its two banks always alongside each other.

Gadadhara Pandita was born in Navadvipa-dhama because Krishna descends from Goloka Vrindavana to this material world with His own associates, parikaras.

śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya prabhu jīve doyā kori’ swa-pārṣada swīya dhāma saha avatari’ atyanta durlabha prema koribāre dāna śikhāya śaraṇāgati bhakatera prāna

Sri Krishna Chaitanya Prabhu Jive Doya Kori (1-2) by Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura

[Out of compassion for the fallen souls, Sri Krisna Chaitanya came to this world with His personal associates and divine abode to teach sharanagati (the goal of surrender), surrender to the almighty Godhead, and to freely distribute ecstatic love of God, which is ordinarily very difficult to obtain. This sharanagati is the very life of the true devotee.]

This song states how Chaitanya Mahaprabhu descends from Goloka Vrindavana with His own parikaras because without His own nitya-parikaras, eternal associates, the Lord cannot perform His lilas.

Thus, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu who is Krishna Himself, brought all of His nitya-parikaras like: Srimati Radhika who appears as Gadadhara Pandita, Lalita-devi as Svarupa Damodara and Mahavishnu as Advaita Acharya appearing in Navadvipa-dhama. Even Narada Rishi appears in Navadvipa-dhama in the form of Srivasa Thakura. And with lots of love and affection, Gadadhara Pandita is always staying with Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Wherever Gadadhara Pandita is, there is Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Likewise, wherever Nimai is, there is Gadadhara Pandita. For this reason in our Vaishnava sampradaya we say, “Gadai-Gauranga, Gauranga-Gadai.” Meaning that Nimai always belongs to Gadadhara and vice versa. They are always staying together, eating and sleeping together also. And Shachimata also loves Gadadhara Pandita as her own family member, very nicely serving Them.

Sometimes in her heart, Shachimata felt that Nimai and Gadadhara are like Lord Rama and Sita. Sita and Rama always stay together, just like Radha and Krishna do. And the same way, Nimai and Gadadhara are always together, exchanging so much love and affection.

Sometimes, They are also quarrelling with each other; but this is called a loving quarrel, prema-kalaha. Because this is the nature of love, when love and attachment increases more and more, at that time, these types of attitudes enter the heart of both lover and beloved, premi and premika. In this material world, we can also see how lover and beloved are sometimes quarrelling. In the same way, Gaurasundara and Gadadhara, due to Their very deep love and attachment, these loving quarrels between Them would occur. However, we should always be careful not to engage in gauranga-nagari-vada, as it can lead to sahajiya-vada.

According to Their time of appearance, Gadadhara is Nimai’s senior and Nimai is junior. So, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, as Nimai, was a student of Sanskrit grammar, vyakarana. Since Gadadhara is older, He is a student of tarkashastra, logic. Nimai mostly spoke high level kathas with Gadadhara, which would sometimes make Gadadhara feel shy as Nimai was in a junior class and he did not want to discuss these topics with Him. Yet, Nimai always forced Gadadhara Pandita into discussions about these subjects.

Srila Gurudeva gave an example: when a small boy speaks high level things, any senior person present will get upset, “Hey, you have to speak according to your own level.” In the same way, Nimai would always speak higher level class kathas, and sometimes Gadadhara did not want to engage in these conversations.. Still Nimai, by force, would talk to Him. During Gadadhara’s return home from school, Nimai would block the road and not allow Him to pass without asking a question regarding logic. One day, Nimai asked Gadadhara, 'Tell me, according to Your philosophy, what is the meaning of mukti?’ Mukti means liberation. In a simple way, Gadadhara first explained the meaning of mukti. Our shastras say:

ātyantika duḥkha nivṛttir eva hi mukti

Simply put, mukti refers to one who is free from all kinds of distress. In this material world, all we want is to be free from distress. Who does not want liberation? If you have some disease or distress or unhappiness you will want happiness, or to be freed from this distress— this is called mukti.

Then, Gadadhara also explained another meaning of mukti. Impersonalists desire to merge with Brahma, which is a rejectable type of mukti. Then, Gadadhara explained, “One who attains the lotus feet of Lord, this is also mukti." There is spiritual mukti, spiritual liberation, vaikuntha-mukti, etc— there are many kinds of liberation.

According to shastra there are four kinds of mukti: salokya, sarshti, sarupya and samipya. In Srimad-Bhagavatam, Vyasadeva Gosvamipada also explains these four kinds of mukti, chatuh-vidha mukti.There is actually a fifth type of mukti, pancha-vidha mukti, called sayujya-mukti, meaning oneness. Krishna Himself said, “Even if I offer these four types of mukti: salokya, sarshti, sarupya and samipya, those who are My devotees will not accept,” what to speak of oneness with the Lord, brahma-sayujya-mukti.

sālokya-sārṣṭi-sāmīpya- sārūpyaikatvam apy uta dīyamānaṁ na gṛhṇanti vinā mat-sevanaṁ janāḥ

Srimad-Bhagavatam (3.29.13)

[A pure devotee does not accept any kind of liberation — salokya, sarshti, samipya, sarupya or ekatva — even though they are offered by the Supreme Personality of Godhead.]

Therefore, our shastras explain that there are many kinds of mukti, like brahma-sayujya-mukti or paramatma-sayujya-mukti. Yogis, according to their yogic process, desire to merge in Brahma. Hence, paramatma-sayujya-mukti is also known as ishvara-sayujya-mukti.

So iIn this way, Gadadhara discussed these things, by force, with Nimai. And Gadadhara gave many different definitions of mukti, however, Nimai was not satisfied. After each explanation, Nimai said, “No, I am not satisfied with your answer. ’Finally, Gadadhara replied, “Hey! You are a junior student, but You are speaking too much. With Your small mouth, You are speaking very big words. So what is your opinion of mukti?”

Then Chaitanya Mahaprabhu gave the highest definition about mukti:

nirodho ’syānuśayanam ātmanaḥ saha śaktibhiḥ muktir hitvānyathā rūpaṁ sva-rūpeṇa vyavasthitiḥ

Srimad-Bhagavatam (2.10.6)

[The merging of the living entity, along with his conditional living tendency, with the mystic lying down of the Mahavishnu is called the winding up of the cosmic manifestation. Liberation is the permanent situation of the form of the living entity after he gives up the changeable gross and subtle material bodies.]

‘Muktir hitvānyathā’ - give up all kinds of activities. When one has realised his or her own transcendental constitutional form, siddha-deha, with this siddha-deha he or she will directly serve Radha and Krishna in Goloka Vrindavana— this is called perfect mukti. In this way, Nimai provided the highest definition of mukti: ‘muktir hitvānyathā rūpaṁ sva-rūpeṇa vyavasthitiḥ’, and according to the nyaya, very nicely established this mukti-tattva with Gadadhara Pandita.

Afterwards, Gadadhara Pandita completely surrendered to Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Actually, without Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s instruction Gadadhara did not do anything. This is called sarvatma-sharanam or atma-samarpana.

One day, Gadadhara Pandita asked Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, “Many devotees are going to take darshana of one sadhu. May I go or not?” Chaitanya Mahaprabhu replied, “Of course, You have to go and take darshana of that sadhu. However, only in the company of devotees. Otherwise, you will not understand the activities of that particular sadhu.” Srivasa Thakura invited Gadadhara Pandita to go along with him to take darshana of the sadhu. And together they went with other devotees to take darshana of the sadhu.

Upon arriving at the sadhu, Pundarika Vidyanidhi’s residence, Gadadhara Pandita noted that Pundarika Vidyanidhi was elegantly dressed with silken gorgeous clothes, and was seated on a golden decorated simhasana. He had a golden spoon in his hand, and was chewing betel nut, whilst being fanned by two servants on both sides. Pundarika Vidyanidhi was also receiving so much reverence from his visitors.

After witnessing this, Gadadhara Pandita’s mind became very disturbed. People generally think that a sadhu refers to a completely renounced personality, one without any possessions and who is probably completely naked. This is actually what they still think today about sadhus in India. Most of their ideas of a sadhu are of a renounced person with ash all over their body and wearing large jata, dreadlocks. Thus, for the loka-shiksha, teaching of others, Gadadhara Pandita now had a similar idea of how a sadhu should appear. And just after a short while, with a disturbed mind, Gadadhara Pandita left Pundarika Vidyanidhi’s residence.

Gadadhara Pandita then seeked Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, who is sarva-antaryami - one who knows all the living entities. Chaitanya Mahaprabhu asked Gadadhara Pandita, “Did You take darshana of the sadhu?” Gadadhara Pandita was shy and remained silent. Chaitanya Mahaprabhu asked again, “What happened?” Gadadhara Pandita’s mind was now very disturbed. Chaitanya Mahaprabhu realised that Gadadhara Pandita did not understand the heart of Pundarika Vidyanidhi.

The next day, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu instructed Gadadhara Pandita to take dashana of Pundarika Vidyanidhi in his residence once more. Meanwhile, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu also instructed Mukunda Datta and other devotees to accompany Gadadhara Pandita.

On their arrival, Pundarika Vidyanidhi was seated very nicely on his beautifully decorated simhasana. Then, Mukunda Datta just recited two shlokas from Srimad-Bhagavatam, about Krishna's rupa and Krishna's guna, Krishna's beauty and Krishna's qualities.

barhāpīḍaṁ naṭa-vara-vapuḥ karṇayoḥ karṇikāraṁ bibhrad vāsaḥ kanaka-kapiśaṁ vaijayantīṁ ca mālām randhrān veṇor adhara-sudhayāpūrayan gopa-vṛndair vṛndāraṇyaṁ sva-pada-ramaṇaṁ prāviśad gīta-kīrtiḥ

Srimad-Bhagavatam (10.21.5)

[Accompanied by His cowherd boyfriends, Shyamasundara entered the forest of Vrinda-devi. His head was decorated with a peacock feather. He wore yellow karnikara flowers over His ears, a dazzling golden yellow garment on His body, and around His neck, extending down to His knees, hung a fragrant vaijayanti garland made of five kinds of flowers. Splendidly attired as a beautiful natavara, a most expert dancer, He appeared just like a very fine actor on stage. He poured the nectar of His lips through the holes of His flute, and the cowherd boys followed behind Him, singing His glories. In this way, the land of Vrindavana was even more charming than Vaikuntha, due to being beautified by Sri Krishna's lotus feet marked with the conch, disk, and other symbols.]

This shloka nicely glorifies Krishna’s beautiful form. Next, Mukunda Datta recited another shloka, glorifying Krishna's qualities of being so wonderful and merciful.

aho bakī yaṁ stana-kāla-kūṭaṁ jighāṁsayāpāyayad apy asādhvī lebhe gatiṁ dhātry-ucitāṁ tato ’nyaṁ kaṁ vā dayāluṁ śaraṇaṁ vrajema

Srimad-Bhagavatam (3.2.23)

[Alas, how shall I take shelter of one more merciful than He who granted the position of mother to a she-demon [Putana] although she was unfaithful and she prepared deadly poison to be sucked from her breast?]

When Mukunda Datta recited these verses, Pundarika Vidyanidhi became completely intoxicated with prema. Pundarika Vidyanidhi started to shake his body, displaying signs of horripilation, followed by perspiration. Then he began rolling down on the ground while incessantly crying and yelling, “Ha! Krishna! Ha! Krishna!” Gadadhara Pandita witnessed this and finally understood the concealment of prema in the heart of Pundarika Vidyanidhi. Gadadhara Pandita also realised what He saw the previous day was only Pundarika Vidyanidhi’s external activities.

Gadadhara Pandita then returned to Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Again, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu asked Gadadhara, “Have You seen the sadhu or not?” Gadadhara Pandita was embarrassed and acknowledged His mistake, “Now, I have realised what kind of sadhu Pundarika Vidyanidhi is. I have committed an offence to his lotus feet.”

Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Prabhupada’s commentary explains that there are two kinds of people in this material world. One is called vishayi-praya and the other is called vaishnava-praya. Vaishnava-praya means that externally one may appear as a Vaishnava, however they are completely enjoying sense gratification. And vishayi-praya refers to one who although may appear like a materialistic person, their heart is completely absorbed in krishna-prema.

We have to carefully understand these two terms in our Vaishnava philosophy. And we should reject those who are vaishnava-praya, externally displaying Vaishnava activities, yet internally absorbed with material sense gratification. Vishayi-praya refers to personalities like Raya Ramananda and most of Mahaprabhu’s associates, who externally are grihasthas, but their hearts always remain completely absorbed in krishna-prema.

Since Gadadhara Pandita committed an offence at the lotus feet of Pundarika Vidyanidhi, Gadadhara Pandita seeked advice from Chaitanya Mahaprabhu about this matter. Chaitanya Mahaprabhu advised Him to take diksha from Pundarika Vidyanidhi. Thus, according to the instruction of the Gaurahari, Gadadhara Pandita became Pundarika Vidyanidhi’s disciple.

The teaching here is that we should very carefully discern who is actually a Vaishnava. And always remember to never criticise any Vaishnava, and always offer respect to Vaishnavas. Always maintain firm faith towards Guru and Vaishnavas, and always chant the Lord’s holy names.

In this material world, there will always be imitators as this is the nature of Kali-yuga, the nature of this material world. So be very careful in this. Some people speak hari-katha and shed tears in an effort to display many external activities of prema. When in actual fact, there is nothing in their hearts, no prema. They only do this for labha, puja and pratishtha. It is only done to show the audience that they are indeed great Vaishnavas. Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura sang:

kabahū sveda, kabahū kheda, kabahū pulaka, svara-vibheda kabahū lampha, kabahū jhampa, kabahū dīrgha-śvāsa re

Ananda-kanda (6) by Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura

[Sometimes He perspires, sometimes He laments, sometimes He experiences horripilation, and sometimes He stammers. Sometimes He leaps long distances, sometimes He jumps high into the air, and sometimes He heaves deep sighs.]

Lampha jhampa means falsely showing these external activities, one must give these things up. After taking shelter of Pundarika Vidyanidhi, Gadadhara Pandita returned to Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and was always associating with Him. Because as mentioned earlier, Gadadhara was always staying with Sri Gaurasundara.

Date: 18 April 2015 Location: Skype


Transcriber: Janardana dasa (UK), Radhakanti dasi (Australia) Editor: Sanatana dasa (USA) Proofreader: Chandrika dasi (UK) Integrity check: Divya-premamayi dasi (Slovakia) Image: Navina-krishna dasa (Holland)

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