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Narrations on the pastimes of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and Radha-Krishna.

Bhatktivinod verses a tantric yogi - enjoyable past time on his auspicious disappearance day

JayF - Tue, 05 Jul 2005 20:32:13 +0530
Hare Krsna!

This is a story that I always relished and found very amusing, and felt fitting to share this on this disappearance day of Bhaktivinod Thakur.

Taken from :

Near the capital of Orissa, in the town of Kamanala, there lived a 'yogi' named Bisakisena, who would lean into a fire while sitting closeby, then return to an erect sitting posture; in this way he'd rock back and forth over the flames. He could also produce fire from his head.  He had two companions going by the names Brahma and Siva; he claimed to be Maha Vishnu. The small kings of Orissa came under his sway and were providing funds for the construction of a temple for the 'Triguna-Avataras'; they also sent him women with whom he engaged in 'rasa-lila' enjoyments. Bisakisena declared he'd drive off the British from ruling Orissa and himself would become king. He published such statements which were circulated all around Orissa. The British thought him a revolutionary for speaking out against the 'British Raj', so the District Governor of the National Government of Bengal drew up arrest orders; but nobody in Orissa dared to act upon these orders, as they all feared Bisakisena.

Mr. Ravenshaw, district commissioner for Orissa, requested Sri Kedaranatha Datta to bring Bisakisena to justice. Sri Kedaranatha Datta went personally to Bisakisena; Bisakisena showed some powers that would normally scare off an ordinary man,  and informed Kedaranatha Datta that he knew well who he was and his mission, but that since he (Bisakisena) was the Lord, he'd better not interfere with him. That was enough for Sri Kedaranatha Datta, who replied by acknowledging Bisakisena's accomplishments in 'yoga' and 'tantra', and requested him to come to Puri where he could have the 'darshan' of Jagannatha.  Bisakisena haughtily said, "Why should I come to see Jagannatha?  He's only a hunk of wood; I am the Supreme in person."

Sri Kedaranatha Datta became instantly furious and arrested the rogue, brought him to Puri and threw him in jail, where he was guarded by 3 dozen Muslim constables and 72 policemen from Cuttack day and night.  The accomplaces to the 'divine trilogy' 'Brahma' and 'Siva' avoided arrest by claiming they'd been forced by Bisakisena to do as they'd done; but Mr. Taylor, subdivision officer at Kodar, later prosecuted them.

The fearless Kedaranatha Datta tried Bisakisena in Puri; the trial lasted 18 days, during which time thousands of people whom he had control over gathered outside the courtroom demanding Bisakisena's release. On day six of the trial Kedaranatha Datta's second daughter Kadambini (aged 7 years) became seriously ill and nearly died; but within a day she had recovered. Sri Kedaranatha Datta knew it was the power of the 'tantric yogi' at work; he remarked "Yes, let us all die, but this rascal must be punished."

The very next day in court the 'yogi' announced he'd shown his power and would show much more; he suggested that Kedaranatha Datta should release him at once or face worse miseries. On the last day of the trial Kedaranatha Datta himself became ill from high fever and suffered exactly as his daughter had done for one whole day.  But the determined Kedaranatha Datta pronounced the man guilty and sentenced him to 18 months for political conspiracy.

When Bisakisena was being readied for jailing, one Dr. Walter, the District Medical Officer, cut off all the 'yogis' hair. The 'yogi' drew power from his long hair; he hadn't eaten or drunk during the whole trial, so he fell to the floor like a dead man and had to be taken by stretcher to jail.  After 3 months he was moved to the central jail at Midnapura where he took poison and died there in the year 1873.