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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Who is Vijay Krishna Goswami?


I received this query from Anurādhā from Netherlands as a comment to a previous blog, but it warrants a separate blog, so here are the questions and answers:

Anurādhā: "I came across one personality in the book "Saints of Bengal" by O.B.L. Kapoor called Śrī Vijaya Kṛṣṇa Goswami. His appearance was somewhat similar to that of your respected Guru."

Advaitadas: It is very similar indeed.

Anurādhā: "Of course that is just appearance, but I also vaguely recall that you mentioned somewhere that you studied some of his works."

Advaitadas: "No, it goes further than appearance. Their lives and attitudes were very similar too, to the extent that my Guru brother Rākhā Haridās even called Sādhu Bābā 'a reincarnation of Vijay Kṛṣṇa Gosvāmī'."

Anurādhā: "Hence I think of you to pose my question.I came across the same picture in a book about Rāmakṛṣṇa and Vivekānanda that someone gave me. He was somehow affiliated according to them. Similarly with the Brahma-Samāj as mentioned in OBL Kapoor's book."

Advaitadas: Vijay Kṛṣṇa Gosvāmī was secretary of the Brāhmo Samāj until Rāmakṛṣṇa talked him out of it.

Anurādhā: Who is he ?

Advaitadas: Like Sādhu Bābā, he was a direct descendent of Advaita Ācārya, in both birth and quality.

Anurādhā: "What was his purpose?"

Advaitadas: "Like Sādhu Bābā, he had an independent, living mind. He didn't take the status quo of being a Gosvāmī, privileged born Guru, for granted, but wanted to explore the truth on his own. Like Sādhu Bābā, he came to the devotional conclusion on his own strength, after lengthy exploration, and became ācārya on his own strength."

Anurādhā: What do you know about him ? His life-story as told by OBL Kapoor is very intriguing, inspiring, but also confusing.

Advaitadas: The confusion can arise when we fail to acknowledge the effect of being a direct descendant of Advaita Prabhu, who is Lord Shiva in Gaura līlā. Lord Shiva is the Lord of the yogis and that attribute appears in some of his descendants too, like Vijay Kṛṣṇa Gosvāmī and Nikuñja Gopāl Gosvāmī.

Anurādhā: Can you shed some light and give some more insight on this remarkable Vaiṣṇava ?

Advaitadas: "There are many wonderful hagiographies of Vijay Krishna Gosvami on the internet. Google Vijay Krishna Goswami or Bijoy Krishna Goswami, you will find a lot there.

If, when you ask how to harmonize this, you refer to the yoga thing, let me say this: You may say "It is not pure bhakti" - perhaps so, but Vijay Kṛṣṇa Gosvami is singled out for mentioning in 'Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇava Jīvan' by Haridās Dās and in 'The Saints of Bengal' by OBL Kapoor, and Nikuñja Gopāl Gosvāmī's disappearance-day celebration is mentioned every year in the Gauḍeśvara Pañjikā, the annual Vaiṣṇava calendar of commemorations, unlike his rasika bhakta brothers and even his famous father Ānanda Gopāl Gosvāmī. That says something about the great admiration they harvested from the great Vaiṣṇavas."

38 comments:

  1. I made a blog about him before, on april 19, 2006, called 'Ignorance IS an excuse'.

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  2. I think that Shyam Sundar Goswami (1891-1978) also was a descendent of Advaita Acarya who trend the path of Yoga. He founded the Goswami Institute of Yoga in Sweden. He was the author of Layayoga, Hatha-yoga, and other works on yoga. An internet reference states that he was a disciple of Balak Bharati. He stated in one of his works that he came from Shantipur, as I recall. If I am wrong, please let me know!

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  3. I do not know this person, perhaps googledeva can help you out. Meanwhile I did a little comparing between Kapoor and Haridas Das. Haridas Das said there was a conspiracy to kill Vijay Krishna Gosvami due to his developing disagreements with Keshab Candra Sen, but he was saved by good luck (apratyasita bhave). When he was in Kooch Bihar he heard a divine voice saying: "Do not stay in any organisation any more - spiritual life cannot be had within organised religion!" (gandira bhitare thakile dharma haya na)

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  4. Jai Vijay Krishna Goswami,

    One of my favorites, I love the stories about him in 'Saints of Bengal', I look forward to more information about him being translated from the original sources one day.

    namaskar,

    jijaji

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  5. I was told a story in which Ramakrishna brought Vijay Krishna Goswami to the Sripat of Das Gadadhar. Vijay Krishna Goswami had not fully accepted bhakti as his path. Ramakrishna hoped to awaken bhakti in his heart by bringing there him for darshan. When they arrived the doors to the deities rooms were closed. Ramakrishna tried to summon a pujari, but to no avail. Then with his mystic potency Ramakrishna had the doors open on their own and Vijay Krishna Goswami felt great bliss upon receiving darshan of the beautiful Ananga Manjari, Radha-Krishna, and Nitai-Gour murtis there.

    There is a picture of Ramakrishna and Vijay Krishna Goswami at the temple in memory of this event.

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  6. That is great. Do you happen the know the source of that story? I see in the Gaudiya Vaishnava Jivan there are several biographies of VKG - sad guru sanga (kulada brahmacari) vijay kathamrita (nava kumar bagaci) acarya prasanga (sarada kanta bandyopadhyaya) and vijay mangal by Varada kanta Bandyopadhyaya. I dont have any of these books here and I never read them either. I wonder if they are at all available.

    Do you have a picture of that mandira and the picture of RKP and VKG?

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    Replies
    1. All the above books are available in Bengali at Kolkata`s Mahesh Library.Please read these authentic books to know about Sri Sri Vijoykrishnaji. Many of the blogs appearing here give incorrect and biased information on Sri Vijoykrishna .To know more about Him visit www.sadgurubijaykrishna.com

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  7. I heard that story from the temple pujari. We will be in Bengal on the 6th of June and will be staying for some time. If I can locate any of those biographies on VKG I would be happy to send them to you. I have a picture of the mandir which I will post on RSD, but not of VKG and RKP as seen there.

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  8. That's great - 6th of june is real soon. Hope you wont feel too hot then. Bengal is less hot than Vraja though. Please note down the names of the books and see what you can find!

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  9. Jay Vijay Krishna Goswami !

    Thanks

    This is not the first excentic (I mean this in a nice and colourful way) devotee I hear about from the Advaita-line. They all seem to be going their own individual ways not caring much about public opinion and religious establishments.

    What do you know about the excentric Gaur Kishore Das Babaji Maharaj ? I only read one really small Iskcon-book and a chapter in OBL Kapoor's book about him. It contains little info, only a few well known anecdotes about his extraordinary detached nature and that he was widely recognized as a great devotee. Is he also a descendent of Advaitacharya ? What do you know about him ?

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  10. I probably wouldnt know more about him than you do. His link with Advaitacarya is that his Guru was named Nanda Kishora Gosvami. He was the pujari of the Madangopal Mandir in Shantipura and is in the Advaita Parivara, likely in the Vamsa as well. I went to see the place in October 2003. Unfortunately the pujari, likely a descendant of NKG, was out for the procession of Kali Puja, so I couldnt speak to him about Nanda Kishor Gosvami.

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  11. All very very interesting.

    Jay Sri Advaitacharya !

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  12. I also remember reading about Vijay Krishna Gosai in Ramakrishna-oriented literature. Specifically, the famous "Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna" records some incidents of meetings between the two, and it really looks as if VKG became Ramakrishna's follower and danced in R's kirtans.

    When I asked Advaitaji about this some time ago, he replied that it was probably down to Bengali culture and how Bengalis are generally proud of anything great in their culture, such as Rabindranath Tagore, Ramakrishna, etc. Or something to that effect.

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  13. Ramakrishna considered the Brahma Samaj a load of crap basically, though he sometimes did attend their soirees. He thought that an Advaita Vams Goswami like Vijay deserved something better and explained to him what a mental construction the BS was. He talked him out of it, after which Vijay became an associate of RK briefly. RK passed away shortly after that though and thus the relationship dissolved and Vijay moved on. VK passed away 13 years later himself. Neither of them lived very long.

    Yes, even pure GVs from Bengal are very proud of Bengal's heroes like Rabindranath, Aurobindo, Ramakrishna and Vivekananda. This admiration is not very deep though. Their hearts really lie with Mahaprabhu only.

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  14. This was actually what created some confusion in me, not the liking he had for yoga.
    The confusion is cleared up.

    Another amazing personality I seek to know more from is the following....

    Last year I was in Nawadwip and went for the first time to Jagananath Das Babaji Maharaja's bhajan kutir. The place is maintained by a younger babaji, strong and beautiful in appearance. And also a very old babaji is living there. He is said to be over a hundred years old. I got darshan, spent some time over there and tried to communicate with 'hands and feet' since I do not know Bengali. Realizing this led to nowhere, I asked there blessings and left, since I had nobody to translate with me.

    Do you know who he is ? Are they granddisciples of Jagannatha Das Babaji Maharaja ?

    The atmosphere over their was really sweet.

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  15. Jagat may know this - he is more experienced in Navadwip's social scene than me. If it is a young babaji perhaps he may also not know it - we both split from there more than 2 decades ago, that babaji may not even have been born then.

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  16. Although I said young, I also noticed a small grey sikha. Better if I say... effulgent or something like that.

    The thing is.. OBL Kapoor's book is nice, but it is not finished. And it will never be finished. Somebody should continue to record all these personalities while they are still there. If it is done generations after their passing the stories can become... somewhat confusing. It is especially interesting to record the lifestories of the ones that choose not to play on the foreground and whose lifestories are not spectacular in the sense of miracles, contributions or philosophy. A description of their softness, gentleness and simple bhajan is already soothing and a contribution to our history.

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  17. According to Vaishnava tradition, hagiographies are only composed after the demise of the saint. Of course that will have to contain some miracles or extraordinary accomplishments, for it is hard if not impossible to write about someone's feelings, intangible and indescribable as they are. Distortion can take place in any phase of time. But yes, descriptions of saintly qualities do inspire the Vaishnava audience and should be broadcast.

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  18. When I asked ADB disciples for a description of any ecstatic symptoms of ADB's on GD some time ago, or generally describe some tangible anecdotes that highlight ADB's "holiness", they were very reluctant to do so. I was rather disappointed with that.

    I understand all those things about not glorifying such things in public about your guru and so on, but in a confidential discussion among a few people, I was rather disappointed not to receive any information that might actually help me towards the goal of taking a guru.

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  19. I went to the Bhajan-sthali of Sri Jagannatha das Babaji together with my elderly Bengali godbrother Haricharan das, who has lived in Nabadwip continuously since the 1950's. Haricharan Prabhu showed me around, and took me to the siddha-bakul tree there, overlooking the pond - it was here that Babaji Maharaj used to sit and do bhajan.

    On the wall in front of you there, you see a plaque mentioning that ISKCON has given money to renovate and maintain the temple.

    They also have produced a book about the life of Babaji Maharaj in English, and I got a copy of that small book from a youngish Babaji. Perhaps the person you mentioned. He didn't really speak with us, as he seemed to be busy that day.

    In the book it says many interesting anecdotes about Jagannatha das Babaji. Perhaps the most interesting is that he did not chant Krishna Nam but instead he used to chant this "Mahamantra of Mahapravo":

    Sri Krishna Chaitanya Prabhu Nityananda Sri Adwaita Gadadhar Sribasadi Gaura Bhakta Brnda

    Advaitadas, you previously mentioned to me that Srila Jagannatha das Babaji may be the writer of this "Panca Tattva" prayer?

    There are many anecdotes in that book which come from Bihari das Babaji, the personal servant of Srila Jagannatha das Babaji. I wouldn't be surprised if that bhajan sthali of Jagannatha Babaji (it is very near the Dhameshwara Mahaprbhu mandira) was inherited or maintained by Bihari das Babaji. The book in fact is mostly stories told by Bihari das Babaji. This Bihari das Babaji, by the way, was a good friend of Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura and he used to attend Gaudiya Math in Mayapura functions right up to the 1930's. He was well known - my Guru Maharaj knew him and I've seen his name in various biographies of Saraswati Thakura.

    ys,
    Muralidhar

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  20. Yes, I have bought this booklet too, they ask only 10 Rs. The anecdotes are similar to the ones in OBL Kapoor's book.

    Most of them do not like to touch money though, so I had a hard time trying to give a donation. Only the younger babaji accepted money from my hands.

    There is actually a nice anecdote in the booklet about Jagannatha Das Babaji and the burden of money.

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  21. Advaitadas,
    You stated:

    He thought that an Advaita Vams Goswami like Vijay deserved something better and explained to him what a mental construction the BS was. He talked him out of it, after which Vijay became an associate of RK briefly.

    On what do you base this contention? Where in the literature about Ramakrishna (either in English or Bangla) did you find evidence for this statement? Please provide appropriate references which can be verified, if you can.

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  22. This is mentioned often in The Gospel of Ramakrishna, the official and famous hagiography of RKP by M (Mahendranath Gupta). It is a large book, my mother left me a Dutch translation when she died, but I wouldnt be able to locate it just now. The gist is that the Brahma Samaj was an artificial synthesis, made up by a handful of Bengali intellectuals, of colonial British influence (science, ratio, Christianity, aversion to idol worship) and the - for them - more acceptable principles of (impersonalist) Hinduism. RKP repeatedly challenged them on the authority of their concoctions and showed with his own example of having realised all the genuine God-given, revealed paths like Advaita, Islam, Christianity proper, bhakti proper, that one must follow a real thing, whatever that thing may be according to one's propensity.

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  23. Here's a link to Sri Sri Ramakrishna Kathamritam (Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna)

    It is incomplete, but has some chapters with Vijaya Krishna Gosvami in it chillin with RKP..

    http://www.hinduism.fsnet.co.uk/namoma/

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  24. Chapter 7 is 'THE MASTER AND VIJAY GOSWAMI'

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  25. The Kundalini Yoga Sadhana
    of Sree Vijayakrishna Goswami
    by Sobharani Basu

    http://www.sadgurubrahman.com/TheKundaliniYogaSadhana.htm

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  26. To know more about Shri Vijay Krishna Goswami ji you can visit their parampara aashram in Ramchandrapur, Aasansol, West Bengal.
    There you can find Shri Sadguru sang(Written by Shri Kuludanand ji Bramhachari) and many other nice books by saints in Hindi also.
    Goswami ji is not just bhakti yogi, he is considered to be Eighth descendant in Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabh's parampara and incarnation on lord in Sadguru swarupa.

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  27. Who gives the intiations these days in the guru-shishya lineage of Prabhupad Shri Bejoy Krishna Goswami.

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  28. Animesh, I am sorry, we belong to a different branch of Advaita Prabhu's family. Sadhu Baba was a fan of Goswamiji but was only a distant relative. If you live in W.Bengal it is best to inquire about it in the Babla Mandir.

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  29. Prabhupad Shri Bejoy Krishna Goswami, was a disciple of one Swami Brahmanand, a sage who lived near Mansarovar.
    He had come in contact with Shri Ramkrishna Paramhansa, but was not his disciple.

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  30. BijoyKrishna Goswami got his initiation from Brahmananda Paramhansa, also referred as Manassorovar Paramhansaji. He had very close contacts with many great Yogis at that time as was documented in several authentic books. Please read books/chapters that are authentic.

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  31. I am pleased and flattered that this blog which is more than 2 years old, still attracts comments and is read so often. Actually it was a very shallow and haphazard blog which was posted casually. I know I could have made a much better job of it, had I known it would draw so much attention.

    I dont know if the last Anon is the same as the one before that, who posted a comment last march. That anon does not seem to deny that at least one of BKG's diksa gurus was Brahmanandaji. I dont see the argument really.

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  32. Almost five centuries ago a love incarnate god head Prabhu Adwaityacharya of Shantipur, traveled far and wide on foot with a burning desire to bring forth god Himself for the salvation of the mankind. He succeeded in his almost impossible task with the advent of Lord Krishna in the form of Sri Krishna Chaitanya who drenched India in the nectar of chanting god’s NAME. About three hundred years later a great devotee of Lord Krishna in the lineage of Prabhu Adwaityacharya took a dangerous vow to travel on DANDEE *1 from the same Shantipur to Jagannath Puri with a burning desire to get Lord Jagannath as his son. After a year’s penance when he reached the Lord’s temple at Puri in an emaciated and bleeding body, he heard Jagannath in a tranced state saying that he is coming to him as his son. A beacon of light came from Jagannath and entered into his bosom. He fainted in rapture. He was none but Bhagawat Acharya Ananda Kishore Goswami a great exponent of Bhagawan (God Sri Krishna). He would go into trance quite often while listening to any discourses on Bhagawan) and God Sri Krishna’s ‘Leela’ descriptions. While listening to these descriptions sometimes blood oozed out of his eyes along with tears. One day he went into deep rapture during one of his discourse on Bhagawan (God Sri Krishna) from which he did not return to outer sense and relinquished his mortal frame on the very spot.
    Dandee is a kind of penance in which a pilgrim traverses a distance by prostrating on the ground with stretched forward arms and stands up again at the point where his palm’s touched the ground and prostrate again from that point, thus proceeding towards the temple two yards at a time.
    Gosaiji’s Birth and Early Life:

    Lord Jagannath’s promise was fulfilled when a son was born to Ananda Kishore and Swarnamoyee in 2nd August 1841, whom they named Bijoy Krishna (Lord Krishna won by love). Alike other messiahs who are born in peculiar situations Bijoy Krishna was born in a wild thicket of arum plants where his mother hid herself when a gang raided their house. Bijoy Krishna, the second son of Ananda Kishore and Swarnamoyee was quite different from others in his childhood. He would talk to the tutelary deity Shyam Sundar (Krishna), play ball game with Him and feed Him the milk meant for him. One day Bijoy refrained from taking food because Shyam Sundar did not return the ball thrown to Him. When every body failed to force him to take his dinner, his food was kept in the dining room. The mother also remained without food and slept. At the dead night Swarnamoyee heard a dialogue from the dining room. She woke up to find Bijoy was not in his bed. She heard Bijoy saying (to Shyam Sundar);”I was angry and vowed not to take food until you return my ball but why did you not take your dinner?”…. after a minute silence Bijoy replied,”Oh! You love me so much. Alright let us share the food, we both are hungry.” After some time when silence prevailed the mother entered the room to see that Bijoy was asleep on the floor and the dishes empty. She fainted.


    *God Sri Krishna was born in a jail, Prince Buddha under a forest bush, Jesus in as stable,
    Chaitanya under a Neem tree, RamKrishna beside a heap of ashes.

    read more :
    www.sadgurubijoykrishna.com

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  33. www.sadgurubijoykrishna.com

    KNOW MORE ABOUT BIJOYKRISHNA GOSWAMI
    PARTHA
    9830631423

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  34. the samadhi of Sri bijoy krishna is at puri. the last days of his life he spent at puri. he was well known as Jatiya baba in puri. hence his samadhi is named as Jatiya babar samadhi.It is not very far from SRI Jagannath temple.
    Cannot stop myself from writing something on Gosaiji (sri bijoy krishna goswamiji well known as gosaiji) .
    You must read sadgurusanga "in the company of sadguru" which is the diary of Kuladanandaji in the company of his sadguru .
    Acharya prasanga is another diary in which the daily days of Goswamiji when he was at puri is written.
    he attained the absolute truth. he used to speak to sakhsat Jagannath, Sri chaitanya mahaprabhu, lord Siv . Gondi charo..the devine voice he heard and suffereed so much pain but at last attained the absolute truth. He said Krishna and Christ are the same. No donot misunderstand . this is written in sadgurusanga. there was nothing unknown to him. He was sadguru avatar. well i cannot write everything in this blog you need to read books on him which are authentic. some of them are getting translated in english.

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  35. http://sadgurusanga.blogspot.com/

    Blog for readers and followers of sadgurusanga

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