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Saturday, July 04, 2009

Dhāmāparādha, is bhajan selfish pt.6, Kṛṣṇa's welfare, Vaikuṇṭha stopover pt.4

Revelation of Kankan Kund in 1940. Note the mass of trees over Ma Jahnava's sitting place.


Bhakta: "I have questions related to Dhamāparādha (offences to the holy places):

1. Is there any fixed number for Dhāmāparādha as in the case of nāmāparādha (10)?
2. Which scripture they are mentioned in?
3. Who becomes monkey-dog-hog in Dhām?
4. What is the rectification of Dhamāparādh?
5. Does Sad Goswamis mention ‘Dhamāparādh’ anywhere?
6. If somebody does some sinful act in Dhām then what is the rectification?

Advaitadas: "Dhāma aparādha is not mentioned in any śāstra. There are 10 nāmāparādhas and 32 sevāparādhas, these are mentioned in Haribhakti Vilāsa and Bhakti Rasāmṛta Sindhu. One should certainly beware of sinful acts in the holy dhām - they are not more sinful than elsewhere, but it is certainly not the purpose of going to holy places to commit sin there. It is the abode of the Lord and it is a place for surrender. Mahāprabhu said sarva tyaji jīber kartabya kāhā bās? Dhām-bās is for those who have given up everything, not for those who want to build huge ashrams, make lots of money, pursue a Guru career or chase the opposite sex. That much is obvious. That is why most devotees are adviced not to stay there too long - Jagadānanda Pandit served as the model for that in Gaura līlā. Monkey-dog-hog? It is up to Kṛṣṇa and one's own karma. There is no fixed rule for that. It is often said that fallen bābās and other sādhus take birth as monkeys. This is not in śāstra, but it is very well possible. Since Dhāmāparādha is not mentioned in śāstra, prāyaścit (atonement) of it is neither."

Bhakta: "What about the belief that sinful reactions are more severe to sins committed in the dhāma?"

Advaitadas: "This too is not in śāstra, but I did notice that those who misbehaved in the dhāma often ended up in a bad situation, losing their bhakti and getting into a lot of trouble. śāstra or no śāstra,  it is obviously very disrespectful and foolish to come to the holy dhāma and forget what you came there to do, and engage in gossip, sin, gross materialism etc."

Is bhajan selfish, pt.6

Bhakta: "Prahlāda Mahāśay speaks this verse in Śrīmad Bhāgavata (7.9.44) -

naitān vihāya kṛpaṇān vimumukṣa eko
nānyaḿ tvad asya śaraṇaḿ bhramato 'nupaśye

(BBT Translation:
My dear Lord Nṛsiḿhadeva, I see that there are many saintly persons indeed, but they are interested only in their own deliverance. Not caring for the big cities and towns, they go to the Himalayas or the forest to meditate with vows of silence [mauna-vrata]. They are not interested in delivering others. As for me, however, I do not wish to be liberated alone, leaving aside all these poor fools and rascals. I know that without Kṛṣṇa consciousness, without taking shelter of Your lotus feet, one cannot be happy. Therefore I wish to bring them back to shelter at Your lotus feet."

Advaitadas: "This deals with Munis (munaya) who covet mukti (sva vimukti kāma, impersonal liberation), this verse is not about nor does it mention Vaiṣṇavas who go and serve Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa in rāgānuga bhajana in Vraja bhūmi. The desire for liberation is already rejected in the beginning of the Bhāgavata (1.1.2) - tāra madhya mokṣa vāñchā kaitava pradhāna - 'The desire for liberation is the main type of cheating-religion.' (CC Adi 1,92) pra-śabdena mokṣābhisandhir api nirastaḥ (Śrīdhara Swāmī quoted in Ādi 1.93). bhajanānandīs are not after liberation - they endeavour to just please Kṛṣṇa with their hearing and chanting.


man mana bhava mad bhakto mad yaji māṁ namaskuru
mam evaiṣyasi satyaṁ te pratijāne priyo'si me

"Think of Me, be My devotee and worship Me. Bow down to Me and you will surely attain Me. I promise you that because you are dear to Me."

(See my blogs of December 25, 2006, July 15, 23 and 30, 2007 (last paragraph) and June 2, 2008)

Bhakta: "In the Bhagavat (1.14.34) Maharaj Yudhisthir inquires from his brother Arjun about the welfare of Bhagavan Govinda. Visvanatha Cakravarti writes in his commentary that it is improper to inquire about the welfare of the Lord. Why then did Yudhisthir do that anyway?"

Advaitadas: "I do not know that for sure, I surmise that it is Yudhiṣṭhira's mixture of vātsalya and sakhya rati for Kṛṣṇa. In Vilāpa Kusumāñjali (47) it is said prasūr iva bhavat kuśalasya pṛccham 'Mother Yaśodā inquires about Your (Rādhā's) welfare' - this may be some mixture of aiśvarya and mādhurya, because Yudhiṣṭhira speaks of Bhagavān (the Supreme Lord) and Govinda at the same time, plus he inquires about His welfare, which is mādhurya. In sweet pastimes Kṛṣṇa is perceived as a human being who needs to be protected etc. In his commentary on this vers (Śrīmad Bhāgavat 1.14.34) Śrīpād Madhvācārya quotes an interesting verse from the Nāradīya Purāṇa:


atyuttamānāṁ kuśala-praśno loka-sukhecchayā
nityadāpta-sukhatvāt tu na teṣāṁ yujyate kvacit

'Because the ati-uttamas (supreme ones) are always blissful it is not appropriate to inquire about their welfare'

Vaikuṇṭha stopover, pt. 4

Bhakta: "As for the queens that were kidnapped by Kṛṣṇa in the form of a band of criminal cowherds in Śrīmad Bhāgavat 1.15.20, Viśvanātha Cakravartīpāda says in his commentary that they became gopīs in another prakāśa (manifestation or pastime) of Kṛṣṇa.  Isn't that a sign that one can progress in rati for and sambandha with Kṛṣṇa, and that being a queen in Dwārkā can be a stopover before proceeding?"

Advaitadas: "Hardly. This does not apply to regular sādhakas like you and me; it is all in the context of the endless game of cursing and blessing in the Purāṇas. They were not nitya siddhas but devīs who were blessed by Aṣṭavakra Muni that they would be the wives of Viṣṇu but because they laughed at his misformed body he also cursed them that they would be touched by naughty cowherds before becoming gopīs. To make the curse come true the cowherds even managed to defeat the invincible Arjun in this līlā. Viśvanātha Cakravartīpāda explains a little further on, in his tika to Śrīmad Bhāgavat 1.15.34, that after the Mauṣala-līlā the devatās that had merged with the nitya siddha Yādavas (as Droṇa and Dharā had merged with the nitya siddha Nanda-Yaśodā to become Kṛṣṇa's parents), mystically separated from them and then returned to Swarg. This too illustrates the difference between Kṛṣṇa's nitya siddha associates and deva/devīs that temporarily merge with them. But as sādhakas we practise according to our sthāyi bhāva and then realize that - tam tam evaiti kaunteya sadā tad bhāva bhāvitā.

(More on stopover-vāda, see my blogs of August 3, 2007, July 23, 2007, and July 4, 2007.)

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