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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Pleasing Kṛṣṇa, Mangal ārati and Rasa-śāstra


Bhakta: "You said one can only please Kṛṣṇa through Rādhā, but this seems to be only in the śṛṅgāra rasa. But the other rasas serve Kṛṣṇa independently."

Advaitadas: "No that is not true. Mother Yaśodā is feeding Kṛṣṇa so He has strength to love Rādhikā, the servants dress Him so He looks nice for  Rādhikā, the cows want Him to herd them in the pastures so He has an excuse to go out to meet  Rādhikā at Radhakund. Same for the cowherd boys. Even the bees, the sun and the moon serve Radha and Kṛṣṇa by creating a romantic atmosphere. The cows of Abhimanyu serve Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa by keeping Abhimanyu so engaged with them that he does not have any time for his so-called wife. They do not serve independently at all, though they may not be aware of it, except for the sakhīs and mañjarīs. Padakarta Jñānadās sings: "tomāri lāgiyā beḍāi bhramiyā giri-nadī vane vane: (Kṛṣṇa sings:) "For Your (Rādhā's) sake I wander through the forest, past the rivers and over the mountains!"

Bhakta: "I heard that in some temples in Vṛndāvana they do not do mangal arati because they say that Kṛṣṇa is still sleeping then."

Advaitadas: 'That would depend on the sampradāya. The temples who hold such philosophies are not Gauḍīya. In Kṛṣṇa Bhāvanāmṛta there is a description of mangal ārati offered by the mañjarīs in the kunja at daybreak [niśānta], and Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa are wide awake then. Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇavas believe Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa are so absorbed in Their loving pastimes that They hardly sleep at any time, perhaps from 1-3 a.m. only."

Bhakta: "Scholars say that the Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇava ācāryas have gleaned rasa tattva from earlier, mundane rasika authors. If this is true then how can rasa be called eternal?"

Advaitadas: "It is true that Rūpa Goswāmī was inspired to write his Bhakti Rasāmṛta Sindhu and Ujjvala Nīlamaṇi by, among others, a book named Rasārṇava Sudhākara, which was written by one of his ancestors, named Siṁha Bhūpāla. But that does not mean there was an historical sequence or a discovery or so. Just see, before Mahāprabhu's advent, the rasika secrets all existed in the 5000-year old Bhāgavatam, but they were not understood and revealed until the Goswāmīs wrote down their books. But that does not mean that the rasika truths did not exist, right?"

Bhakta: "Rūpa Goswāmī taking over the whole rasa-science from previous, mundane writers, does make him seem like an ordinary mundane scholar."

Advaitadas: "Who else is Rūpa Mañjarī? How else is Gaura-līlā meditation transcendental and eternal if Rūpa Gosvāmī was not? Look, the fact that Rāma and Kṛṣṇa took diksa and went to Gurukula (school) does not mean they are not the omniscient Bhagavān, Paramātmā, right? Similarly, Rūpa Gosvāmī taking lessons from previous teachers does not make him a conditioned soul. Lord Viṣṇu got the Kaustubha gem when the milk-ocean was churned, or did He? It is eternally His, and in a pastime He got it again. Similarly the Gosvāmīs knowledge is eternally with them but sometimes they play as if they are learning this."

9 comments:

  1. This is a wonderful blog. Thank you for this. It was very refreshing and a beam of light in the darkness of my mundane day.

    I would like to contribute my view of Sri Rupa Goswami's rasa system.

    A) The upanishad says raso'vai sah. So it's not like someone else besides Krsna invented rasa. Krsna is rasa.

    B) Life imitates Krsna. This world is an upsidedown reflection of that world. The rasa there is reflected into the rasas here.

    C) Art imitates life. Then you have drama emulating the rasas of life, and manipulating them. In the refinement of this art the experience of rasa is theoretically broken down into different components. The purpose is that the writer and actors can understand exactly what to do to achieve the effects they want.

    D) Sri Rupa takes what drama-scholars have developed and again applies it AS A VEHICLE to understand the thing it originates from - Krsna, and His Lila (Plays - Dramas)

    It is not that rasa is actually broken into 5 parts, and each part is broken into so many subparts and subsubparts. This is merely the THEORY of how we can APPRECIATE, understand and even try to compliment and augment rasa from our initial distant and unrealized vantage point. The actual rasa is a unified divine experience. The system Sri Rupa has shown us is an intellectual tool to help us comprehend Rasa.

    Therefore although the framework of this tool may have been developed by playrights and drama-scholars - it does not in any way indicate that the subject which the tool is meant to reveal was created by play-writers. A scientist invents a telescope and looks at a distant planet. The telescope is the tool to reveal the planet, it is not the thing which creates the planet.

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  2. Also - about the final question... Sri Rupa took from others. But what is the problem in that? How does that make him any less divine? He took his body from his parents. He took his rice from the fields. Does it mean a being is not transcendental if he has any connection with things that appear to be normal? I don't think so - else the whole "avatar" concept would be a fraud.

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  3. Bhakta: "You said one can only please Krishna through Radha, but this seems to be only in the sringara rasa. But the other rasas serve Krishna independently."

    Advaitadas: "No that is not true. Mother Yashoda is feeding Krishna so He has strength to love Radhika, the servants dress Him so He looks nice for Radhika, the cows want Him to herd them in the pastures so He has an excuse to go out to meet Radhika at Radhakund. Same for the cowherd boys. Even the bees, the sun and the moon serve Radha and Krishna by creating a romantic atmosphere. The cows of Abhimanyu serve Radha-Krishna by keeping Abhimanyu so engaged with them that he does not have any time for his so-called wife. They do not serve independently at all, though they may not be aware of it, except for the sakhis and manjaris. Padakarta Jnanadas sings: "tomAri lAgiyA beDAi bhramiyA giri-nadI vane vane: (Krishna sings:) "For Your (Radha's) sake I wander through the forest, past the rivers and over the mountains!"


    I fully agree with your answer. However, would that only apply to the personalities in the shastras? Or that also applies to the jivas who are playing their own dramas in this world.Is it arrogance to say I want to please Krishna directly? Or is the rationale for why you said that we can't please Krishna without pleasing Radha first is because Radha personifies hladini shakti?

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  4. Malati,

    However, would that only apply to the personalities in the shastras? Or that also applies to the jivas who are playing their own dramas in this world.

    How could they, unless they engage in devotional service?

    Is it arrogance to say I want to please Krishna directly? Or is the rationale for why you said that we can't please Krishna without pleasing Radha first is because Radha personifies hladini shakti?

    The answer to both these questions is 'yes'.

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  5. many praNAms to all VaishNavs and Gaura bhakta vrnda

    Please kindly answer my [eternal] qn: Someone said "Is it arrogant to say i want to please Krshna directly ?" Yes.

    My qn is, what if one's KRshNa is real, came to them as a surprise and stayed with them, and they have no clue of the G of GV ? They have a direct relationship with KRshna one-on-one and no ashta sakhis manjaris Radha or Rukmini or Yashoda are around. Then what ? Isn't Krshna driving the show here ? There are incidents that prove He is. That their bhav is real.

    Some Pushti Marg Vaishnavs are in Radha-bhav. What will this lead to ? What is there svarUp ? What is their siddha deha ?

    Thank You. Please kindly answer my qns.

    will all sincerity
    your humble servant

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  6. ~ ~
    Krishna is never alone. He will be in the company of your yuthesvari and your Guru rupa Manjari. There is no other way. This is the G of GV.

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  7. praNAm Prabhu

    Thanks for replying so promptly. ... but, what i mean by G of GV is : There are bhaktas oblivious to GV, who met KRshna accidentally - pleasant surprise, and of course live with Him in the manas ganga. He does not bring anyone with Him. His Lotus Feet are always there. It is just devotee and KRshNa on Shvetadvipa. What will be the devotee's svarup or siddha deha ? It Krshna lets them think they are His mother or lover or wife ? It is so artificial for them to bring Rupa Manjari and cultivate a manjari bhav or a Yashoda-kinkari bhav.

    In any case, how can Rupa Manjari be the leader of millions and billions of manjaris ? How many sakhi-manjaris is each siddha manjari conscious of ?

    thanks for your patience with this silly jIva

    Hare KRshNa

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  8. Also, how to reconcile being with million other dasis ,
    with the Priti Sandarbha verse that says each devotee has a one-on-one relation with KRshNa ? (Jiva Goswami)

    Thanks.

    Hare KRshNa

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  9. ~~ it is hard to comprehend your language and your points, but hear me still - sAdhya kobhu noy - it is never artificial. why? guru krsna prasade pAy - he/she gets it by the grace of guru/krsna.
    manjari bhava is the great gift of sri caitanya mahaprabhu, not yashoda bhav - unnatojjvala rasa sva bhakti.
    there is no krsna on swetadwip but narayan. prity sandarbha is easy to grasp. you will have your very own radha, krsna and rupa manjari. there are not millions but uncountable swarupas there,

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