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Verses, prayers and quotes of choice. If you come across something you find inspiring, please post it here. You can also start threads on a particular theme and regularly post in something related.

April 2004 - Meditations

Revati - Tue, 13 Apr 2004 20:41:40 +0530
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Srila Bilvamangala Thakura said to Sri Krsna:

gopalangana kardamesu viharam vipradhavare lajjase
bruse go vrsa hunkrtaih stuti satair maunam vidhatse satam
dasyam gokula pumscalisu kuruse svaymam na dantatmasu
jnatam krsna tavagghri pankaja-yugam premaika labhyam muhuh

“O Krsna! You play in the mud on the yards of the cowherders, but You are hesitant to appear on the pure sacrificial altars of the noble brahmanas; You cry out when You hear the mooing of the cows and bulls of Vraja, but when the great sages offer hundreds of reverential prayers to You, You remain silent. You become the servant of the cowherdgirls in Vraja while You don’t even want to be the master of the austere ascetics. O Krsna! Thus I know that Your lotusfeet can only be attained by ecstatic love!”
Revati - Wed, 14 Apr 2004 20:10:55 +0530
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kanthaka gadi kamala sama padatala manjira cirahi jhampi
gagari vari dhari kori pichala calatahi anguli capi
hari abhisaraka lagi!
dutara pantha gamana dhani sadhaye mandire yamini jagi
kara-yuge nayana mudi calu bhavini timira payanaka ase
mani kankana pana phani mukha bandhana sikhai bhujaga guru pase
gurujana vacana badhira sama manai an sunai koho an!
parijana vacane mugadhi sama hasai govinda dasa paramana

The poet Govinda Dasa sings:

“To prepare Herself for walking over the thorny pathways on the way to the grove at night, She strews thorns over Her yard in the daytime and learns how to tolerate their pricks. She learns how to wrap Her ankle bells into Her cloth, so that She can run at night without making any sound. She throws water over Her yard in the daytime to learn how to walk over slippery paths at night. She covers her eyes with Her hands in the daytime to learn how to walk in the dark at night. And She rewards a snake charmer with a jeweled bangle for teaching Her a mantra that will stifle the snakes that might attack Her at night and that will protect Her from the attacks of wild beasts of prey. It is as if She is deaf for the words of Her superiors and She simply smiles like a fool when She hears the criticism and rebukes of Her relatives. For Syamasundara’s sake She takes even unlimited misery to be `like great bliss!”
Jagat - Thu, 15 Apr 2004 03:36:30 +0530
One day, Nandimukhi was speaking to a group of gopis, telling them stories from the Puranas. Some of the girls from Radha's groups were yawning and nodding off, so much so that Padma began to laugh at them. Then Lalita turned to her and said in a deceptively sweet voice, "We have not performed as many pious actions in previous lives as you.

vidmaH puNyavatI-zikhAmaNim iha tvAm eva harmye yayA
nIyante zarad-indu-dhAma-dhavalAH svApotsavena kSapAH |
ko’yaM naH phalati sma karma-viTapI vRndATavI-kandare
zyAmaH ko’pi karI karoti hRdayonmAdena nidrA-kSayam ||
We know that you are the most pious of all, for even on these autumn nights, when the moon is shining brightly and keeping the sky light, you are able to enjoy delightful dreams in your palatial residences. I don't know what evil seeds of karma we planted in past lives that have now grown into trees and are bearing fruit. We have to spend our nights in caves or under a tree in the forest, where some black elephant in a kind of intoxication of the heart keeps on disturbing our sleep.
This is called "vyAja-stuti", when one pretends to be praising someone, while in fact showing one's own superiority. (Ujjvala-nilamani 9.27, Vishwanath)
Jagat - Thu, 15 Apr 2004 04:04:45 +0530
That was an example of darpa, which is a kind of pride that comes out of a sense of the superiority of one's enjoyments. Now this following verse is an example of mada, a kind of pride that comes out of feeling one's service is superior.

One day, Padma came across Lalita picking flowers near the Yamuna. She asked why she was doing so and Lalita told her the flowers were for worshiping the Sun God. Padma then said: "I don't think that our Chandravali has as much devotion for her deity as Radharani has for hers.

jagati lalite dhanyA yUyaM sugandhibhir adbhutai
ravir aviratiM yAbhiH puSpair amIbhir upAsyate |
bata vidhi-vazAj jAtaM vanya-sraji vyasanaM tathA
dalam api na naH kAtyAyanyai yathA pariziSyate ||
Lalita, you are really most fortunate in this world, for you are able to worship the Sun constantly with all these amazing, fragrant blossoms. Alas, Fate has dealt us an unkind hand, for we are so busy making garlands that we haven't even got a bud left over for worshiping Katyayani.
The garlands are for Krishna. (UN 9.31)
Jagat - Thu, 15 Apr 2004 04:47:04 +0530
In the previous examples, the sakhis of the yuthesvari used indirect language to indicate her superiority. When one openly proclaims such superiority, that is called auddhatyam, or insolence.

One day, Padma was arguing with Radharani's friends. She was proclaiming the great good fortune of Chandravali and her group so loudly that finally Lalita lost patience. She said,
kas tAvad vraja-maNDale sa valate gAndharvikA spardhatAM
sArdhaM hanta janena yena jagatI-jaGghAla-kIrti-dhvajA
kulyAyAH kRpaNAvalISu kRpayA kAmaM dravac-cetaso
yasyAH preraNayA kSaNaM bhavati vaH padme niSevyo hariH
Who can compete with Gandharvika anywhere in this land of Vraja? She carries the banner of glories that penetrate the furthest corners of the universe in an instant. Indeed, so noble is she that she takes pity on you lesser creatures and sends Hari over to you, so that for a few moments at least you can render him a little service.
"Because Radha is present here in Vraja, you other girls have the chance to associate with Krishna. Otherwise, the possibility would not even present itself. Only because of her great nobility does she have mercy on you pitiful creatures and send Krishna, who is completely under her thumb, to you. Her heart just melts as she thinks, 'These poor girls are feeling so lusty for Krishna that they may just die if they do not get a few moments' association with him." (Vishwanath) (UN 9.33)
Jagat - Thu, 15 Apr 2004 05:00:49 +0530
A last one for today. Vishnudas gives the following example from Dana-keli-kaumudi for auddhatya.

bhavatu mukha-maNDalena balinA candrasya padmasya vA
vyAkSiptA suSameti keyam abudhaiH zlAghA vinirmIyate
yad dUre’py anubhUya bhUyasi sudhA zuddhApi candrAvalI
padmAlI ca visRjya zIryati nijAM saundarya-darpa-zriyam
It seems that the charms of the moon and the lotus flower
are merely the reflections of Radha’s perfectly proportioned face,
and so the less intelligent praise them.
But as soon as they feel her presence, even from afar,
Chandravali, who is compared to a multitude of moons,
and her friend Padma, compared to an entire garden of lotuses,
both of whom are filled with spotless nectarean charms,
wither in shame, losing any pride they had in their own beauty.
Hari Saran - Thu, 15 Apr 2004 13:34:52 +0530
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“I have my meals, I have my clothes, and I am having fun! My bhajana is also going on, but in a mechanical way, I always feel the need for profit, adoration and distinction and I never miss my beloved deities. That is why feelings of eagerness never awaken within my heart!”
Srila Rupa Goswamipada.

Sri-Sri Utkalika Vallari. – pg. 6.
Jagat - Fri, 16 Apr 2004 00:06:00 +0530
saMmohanasya kandarpa-vRndebhyo’py agha-vidviSaH |
mUrto narma-priya-sakhaH zRGgAro vartate vraje ||
kSipen mitho vijAtIya-bhAvayor eSa pakSayoH |
IrSyAdIn sva-parivArAn yoge sva-preSTha-tuSTaye |
ata eva hi vizleSe snehas tAsAM prakAzate ||
One of the intimate friends of the enemy of Aghasura, who is more enchanting than all the gods of love, is Sringara-rasa who has taken human form and lives in Vraja. Envy and these other conflicting states of mind are his expansions. He is the one who thrusts the various gopis into these conflicting states of mind for the sake of his dear Krishna's satisfaction. Therefore when the gopis are separated from Krishna, they feel affection for each other.
The example is taken from Lalita-madhava. After Krishna has left for Mathura, Radha and her friends search Vrindavan in disbelief, convinced that he is still hiding there somewhere. At Govardhan, Radha catches sight of her reflection in a pond and, thinking it to be Chandravali, appeals to her in the following words:

sAndraiH sundari vRndazo hari-pariSvaGgair idaM maGgalaM
dRSTaM te hata-rAdhayAGgam anayA diSTyAdya candrAvali
drAg enAM nihitena kaNTham abhitaH zIrNena kaMsa-dviSaH
karNottaMsa-sugandhinA nija-bhuja-dvandvena sandhukSaya
O Chandravali! How fortunate I am to see you! Up to now, it has been a most inauspicious day. How many times Krishna held you tightly in his arms. Quickly, water my thirsty soul by wrapping your arms, which still carry the fragrance of Krishna's flower ear ornaments, around my neck.
Ujjvala-nilamani 9.43-45. Lalita-madhava 3.39.
Hari Saran - Fri, 16 Apr 2004 12:31:44 +0530
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caturyaika nidana sima capalapanga cchata mantharam
lavannyamrta vici lolita drsam laksmi kataksadrtam
kalindi pulinangana pranayinam kamavatarankuram
balam nilam ami vayam madhurima svarajyamaradh

“We worship an adolescent boy of bluish complexion, Who is the limit of cleverness. Who slows down Sri Radhika with the luster of His eyes that are swaying on the waves of nectarine elegance. Who is honored by the glances of the goddess of fortune (Sri Radha), Who do the girls on the bank of Yamuna love. Who is the seed of all the descents of Cupid and the Emperor of sweetness.”
[Krishna Karnamrta – 3]

Srila Raghunatha’s Prarthanah, prayer 4, pg. 12
Jagat - Tue, 20 Apr 2004 18:05:40 +0530

"The Agent's Song"

By Srila Bhaktivinode Thakur

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boro sukher khobor gAi
surabhi-kuJjete nAmer hAT khuleche khoda nitAi (1)
I am singing to announce some very good news! Lord Nityananda Himself has opened the marketplace of the Holy Name at Surabhi Kunj in Sri Nabadwip.
boro mojAr kathA tAy
zraddhA-mUlye zuddha-nAma sei hATete bikAy (2)
It is a most delightful piece of news! The pure Holy Name is being sold in that marketplace for the price of faith alone.
joto bhakta-bRnda bosi’
adhikArI dekhe’ nAma becche dor koSi’ (3)
While the devotees wait in line, Lord Nityananda studies their qualifications and then sells them the Name after setting the price they must pay.
jadi nAma kinbe, bhAi
AmAr saGge colo, mahAjaner kAche jAi (4)
O brother, if you really want to buy the Holy Name, then come along with me, for I am now going to meet with Lord Nityananda, the wholesaler.
tumi kinbe kRSNa-nAma
dasturi loibo Ami, pUrNa hobe kAma (5)
You will buy the pure Name and I will get my commission. In this way all our desires will be fulfilled.
boro doyAl nityAnanda
zraddhA-mAtra loye den parama-Ananda (6)
Lord Nityananda Prabhu is greatly merciful—he takes only your faith in the Holy Name, and in return bestows the topmost divine bliss.
ek bAr dekhle cakSe jal
gaura bole nitAi den sakala sambal (7)
On just once seeing the tears in your eyes, Nitai will utter the name of Gaura and give you everything you need to attain perfection.
den zuddha kRSNa-zikSA
jAti, dhana, vidyA, bala nA kore apekSA (8)
He will give you the pure teachings of Sri Krishna, without caring for your caste, material wealth, mundane knowledge, or physical strength.
amani chAre mAyA-jAl
gRhe thAko, bane thAko, nA thAke jaJjAl (9)
With Nityananda’s mercy, Maya’s nets will automatically set you free. Whether you are a householder or renounced, nothing will trouble you anymore.
Ar nAiko kalir bhoy
AcaNDAle den nAma nitAi doyAmoy (10)
There is no need to fear the terrible age of quarrel, for the most merciful Lord Nityananda gives the Holy Name to even to the lowest among men.
bhaktivinoda DAki’ koy
nitAi-caraNa binA Ar nAhi Azroy (11)
Bhaktivinode loudly calls out and proclaims to all, “Other than the lotus feet of Lord Nityananda, there is no shelter!”
Jagat - Tue, 20 Apr 2004 18:40:27 +0530
My old khata from India days. Here's a great guru kirtan I really love. Transliteration and translation to follow.

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Jagat - Tue, 20 Apr 2004 18:56:07 +0530

zrI-guru zrI-pAda-vaiSNava-gaNa !

Vishwarupa Das

zrI-guru zrI-pAda-vaiSNava-gaNa !
karuNA koro ei akiJcane
AmAra ghucAo bhrAnti, tritApa azAnti
mAtAo gaura kIrtane ||1||
O Sri Guru, O venerable Vaishnavas! Please be merciful to this helpless soul. Please erase my misconceptions and the turmoil of the three miseries, and intoxicate me in Sri Gauranga’s kirtan.
Ami sAdhana sukRti, saGgati vihIna
kali-hata jIva, pApete malina
Achi kRta karma phala, bhuJjite kevala
pariyA e bhava bandhane ||2||
I have no spiritual discipline, nor good association. I am a tiny jiva, ground down by this age of Kali and soiled by sin. I have no option but to reap the results of my past deeds, bound here in this material existence.
AmAra joto din jAy, toto anartha bArAy
azuddha e mon, asAra cintAy
diye gaura sandhAn, zuddha koro prAN
bhakti-prema-rasa-siJcane ||3||
With every day that passes, my troubles increase. My mind is impure from absorption in thoughts of the unessential. Please show me the way to Gauranga; purify my heart by watering it with the juices of love and devotion.
AmAy dAo premAsvAda bhakata saGge
bhAsAo gaura rasa taraGge
bhaji hari-nAma-yajJe, prabhu yajJezvara
sundara zrI-zacI-nandane ||4||
Give me a taste of prema bhakti in the association of devotees. Wash me away in the waves of Mahaprabhu’s rasa. Let me worship the Lord of the Sacrifice in the sacrifice of the Holy Name, the beautiful son of Sachi.
dAsa vizvarUpe koy zuno dayAmoy
purAo vAsanA dAo padAzroy
mAti gaura garave gaura vaibhave
gaura-mahimA kIrtane ||5||
Vishwarupa Das says, listen to me, O merciful one! Fulfill my desires and give me refuge at your feet. Intoxicate me with the pride of being Gauranga’s devotee, in the wealth of Gauranga’s devotion, and in the singing of Gauranga’s glories.
Jagat - Tue, 20 Apr 2004 19:39:27 +0530

Sorry for inundating this thread today. Doing a songbook for Mandala.

When I was living at my Gurudeva's ashram in Birnagar, we had one custom that we did without fail: morning kirtan through the residential streets of the village. We would stop in front of three houses each day and sing this song, based on Mahaprabhu's instructions to Haridas and Nityananda in the Chaitanya Bhagavata. Most people in this predominantly Shakta village wouldn't give us the time of day, so we usually went to the same houses of pious Vaishnavas, who would come out with a plate of batasa or cut fruit, the women giving ulu dhvani. I used to love going out when Sachinandan was there. Sachinandan is another person who influenced Iskcon kirtan through Gurukripa and Yashodananda, whether anyone knows it or not.

~ Nadiya Godrume ~

by Srila Bhaktivinode Thakur

nadIyA-godrume nityAnanda mahAjana
pAtiyAche nAma-haTTa jIvera kAraNa (1)
On the island of Godruma in Nabadwip Dham, the magnanimous Lord Nityananda has opened up the marketplace of the Holy Name, meant for the deliverance of all fallen souls.
(zraddhAvAn jan he, zraddhAvAn jan he)
prabhur AjJAy, bhAi, magi ei bhikhA
bolo kRSNa, bhajo kRSNa, koro kRSNa-sikSA (2)
O people of faith! O people of faith! On Lord Gauranga’s order, my brothers, I beg this one thing of you: Chant Krishna’s name, worship Krishna, and learn about Krishna.
aparAdha-zUnya hoye loho kRSNa-nAma
kRSNa mAtA, kRSNa pita, kRSNa dhana-prANa (3)
Eliminate all offenses from your life and just repeat the holy name of Krishna. Krishna is your true mother, father and the treasure of your very life.
kRSNera saMsAra koro chAri’ anAcAr
jIve doyA, kRSNa-nAma, sarva-dharma-sAra (4)
Give up all sinful behavior and carry on your worldly duties with Krishna as the center. Chanting the holy name of Krishna and showing compassion to all creatures is the essence of all religion.
Revati - Thu, 22 Apr 2004 20:40:32 +0530
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“O Sakhis! Where is Priyaji?” The sakhis reply: “Syamasundara! Her superiors have forbidden Her to leave the house today.” Syama says: “But why do I smell Her fragrance then? Tell Me the truth! She must be hiding in some nearby grove, just to make fun of Me!” The sakhis reply: “Syama! Our clothes carry Radhika’s fragrance, because we’re always close by Her! We tell You the truth: Today She really couldn’t come along with us!” When Nagara hears these words He becomes very upset and says: “Tell Me, how can I still meet Her?” The sakhis then advise Him: “Look, just stay here for some time, and be fixed in chanting Her honeysweet name, and She will surely show up, being attracted to Your chanting!” On the sakhis’ advise, Syama lovingly starts to chant Radha’s holy name, but after some time he asks them: “O sakhis! I’ve chanted for so long now, but still Your friend didn’t show up!” The sakhis reply: “Look, along with the chanting You should also do some hearing! We will chant the holy name of Radha, and You listen!” premna akarnayate: The sakhis are chanting Radhas’s name, and Syama is listening with love and attention. Becoming more attracte to Radha by this practice of hearing, Syama says: “O sakhis! Now I have also listened to the holy name of Sri Radha, but still She has not shown up yet! “One sakhi then jokingly replies: “Look Syamasundara! I thuink that You’re committing offenses to the chanting of the holy name, and that’s why You don’t get any result1 Have You maybe gone to Candravali’s grove today?” Sitting aside in hiding, and hearing Her friends’ jokes, Svamini laughs. Sripada, in his kinkari-form, sticks to Her like Her shadow and floats in oceans of bliss. The sakhis now tell Krsna: “Look, just clap Your hands and chant the holy name out loud. Then You will get rid of Your offenses, and the holy name will be please with You!” then Nagararaja in great loving ecstasy, and tearfilled eyes, joins the sakhis in ecstatic Radha nama sankirtana. Seeing the ecstasy, Srimati can no longer stay in hiding, so She enters the kunja and blesses Nagara with Her audience. “This holy name of Sri Radha” says Sripada, “is my very life!”

Extracted from the commentary of the verse 97 of "Sri Radha Rasa Sudhanidhi," by Sri Ananta Das Pandit.
Revati - Sat, 24 Apr 2004 20:35:20 +0530
Sri Jagannatha Dasa Babaji Maharaja once begged a ruti (bread) as alm from the sweepers of Vrindavana, and when the leading Vaisnavas asked him why he did so, he blissfully answered: “They are always serving the dust of Vraja, therefore they are most fortunate! They’re not mere sweepers – they are most fortunate munis and rsis that took birth in outcaste families simply to serve the dust of Vraja-dhama!”
"Gaudiya Vaishnava Jivana" by Haridas Dasaji

S.S.R.R.Sudhanidhi page: 230.-
Revati - Sat, 01 May 2004 06:50:15 +0530
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ki na bole ki kore bhaktera karane: bhakta lagi boli badhe sugrivera sthane
jvalanta anala krsna bhakta-lagi khay; bhaktera kinkara apana icchay

“What will Krsna not do and say for His devotees? For His devotee He killed Bali in Sugriva’s place. For His devotee Krsna swallowed the forestifire. Thus He voluntarily becomes His devotee’s servant.”
(Caitanya Bhagavata)

Extracted from SRRS. page 239.
Not so long ago a man from Punjab wandered through different holy places around Vrndavana, agitated by feelings of separation from his wife. One night he was loudly crying for his wife in Radharani’s parental abode Barsana. His wife’s name was Kisori, so he loudly cried out “O Kisori! O Kisori!” Limitlessly merciful Radharani heard this pitiful crying and asked Her friend Lalita: “Lalite! Who is this great devotee crying out for Me? Quickly bring him to Me!” Lalita said: Radhe! This is not a devotee, it’s a hellish person who has gone mad over his wife who is also named Kisori! He’s not calling out for You!” Merciful Radharani replied: “Lalite, I know that, but tell Me what should I do? My heart melts when I hear those cries of love and I cannot stay calm anymore! Everyone here calls Me Kisori! Therefore take that person to Me with love and make him My girlfriend!

SRRS page 110. ADBM's commentary.

siddha deha diya, vrndavana majhe
sevamrta-koro dana
piyaiya prema, matta kori more
suna nija gunagana

“Please bestow upon me my real form (sidda-deha). Place me in the midst of Vrndavana, and give me the nectar of devotional service. Please force me to drink prema and let me be fully absorbed in it, so much so that I become intoxicated and can’t think anything else. Then I will sing your glories, and you will hear my song filled with the madness of prema”.

Radha- Krsna Vijnapti – by Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura.

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