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Discussions on the doctrines of Gaudiya Vaishnavism. Please place practical questions under the Miscellaneous forum and set this aside for the more theoretical side of it.

Sakshatkara or Prema? -

Jagat - Fri, 22 Jul 2005 04:15:53 +0530
Brihad-bhägavatamrita 2.3.180 (a great, great chapter, by the way)

sarveSAM sAdhanAnAM tat-sAkSAt-kAro hi sat-phalam |
tadaivAmUlato mAyA nazyet premApi vardhate ||180||

The direct vision of Krishna is the true result of all the devotional practices. Through such vision, one's illusory concept is completely destroyed and one's love for Krishna increases.

Can you separate sakshatkara from prema? Is one a cart, the other a horse? Is one a chicken, the other an egg? Are they two sides of a coin? Can we say, "The goal of bhakti is prema, not sakshatkar?"

Jagat - Fri, 22 Jul 2005 04:27:03 +0530
I think the difference is this: If you believe in "prema" without sakshatkar, it is likely that your concept of prema will be watered down.
Jagat - Fri, 22 Jul 2005 04:45:43 +0530
I ended up spending the day editing the Brihad-bhagavatamrita for GGM. Pretty amazingly, I will finish it today--not a perfect job, but nothing on GGM is.

When in Mayapur this year, Gadadhar Pran said of Brihad Bhagavatamrita that he never cared much for it. "Once you've got the point of what is the topmost devotion, then you don't really need it any more, do you?"

OF course, GP thinks the same of the Bhagavatam itself, I guess. GP is a real ekanta, so I don't think he's wrong, but I really find there is a lot of nectar oozing out of this book, even as I just skim through it.

For those wondering--from a hundred points of view, this was a wasted day. But what a waste !
Jagat - Fri, 22 Jul 2005 04:50:48 +0530
Like in 2.4, Narayan seems like such a nice guy. This is a really happy book. Gopa Kumar is a Krishna bhakta, but Narayan is watching out for him, birth after birth (2.4.81-83).

And I think this image of Narayan dressing up like Krishna to try to keep Gopa Kumar in Vaikuntha with him is just brilliant. He'll do anything to keep a Krishna bhakta around. But watch out for God dressing up as Krishna to distract you and keep you in the midst of palaces.

Narayan dressed up as a cowherd boy is like Marie-Antoinette dressed up as a village girl, with her own straw huts on the Versaille palace grounds. It's so rustic...
Madhava - Fri, 22 Jul 2005 04:52:42 +0530
Considering that prema by its nature is zrI-kRSNAkarSiNI, how could there not be sAkSAtkAra when prema awakens? Conversely, how could there not be prema when sAkSAtkAra is attained? And, without the element of viSayAlambana-vibhAva, how could rasa ever arise to begin with?

The very concept of prema calls for the presence of both Azraya and viSaya. Hence, wherever there is a longing for prema, there must be a longing for prema-sevA directed towards the object of the emotion. The presence of such sevA is inseparable from sAkSAtkAra.

kRSNa-premodgama, premAmRta-AsvAdana |
kRSNa-prApti, sevAmRta-samudre majjana ||
[CC 3.20.14]

Upon the attainment of prema, the premI-bhakta is immersed in an ocean of sevAmRta. To separate prema from the element of sAkSAtkAra is essentially to separate the concept of sevA from the presence of prema. That, as we know, is characteristic of zAnta-rasa.
anuraag - Fri, 22 Jul 2005 21:09:27 +0530

All well known pure devotees of the Lord, even after the Lord has blessed them
with Divine vision and realization -'divya sAkSAtkAra', have made it a point to
beg for the blessing of Prema Bhakti and 'sevAnanda'.

These original verses from Shri Ramacharita manasa
are often melodiously recited by Jagadguru Sri Rama
Kripaluji Maharaj in his discourses stressing that
'sevAnanda' of the Lord is much superior to 'sAkSAtkAra'.

When the devotee Kaka bhushundi was blessed with the
Divine vision of His Lord, He made His offer to the devotee:

kakabhusundi Mang bar athi prasanna mohi jaani.
animadhik sidhi apar ridhi moksh sakal suk kani.

"Kaka bhushundi, ask me a boon, for know that I am highly pleased with you;
be it the eight perfections such as Anima (the power of assuming a form as small
as an atom), or fabulous wealth (such as that possessed by Kubera, the god of riches),
or final liberation, the fountain of all bliss;

Jyan bhibek bhirathi bhigjyana.Munidurlab gun je jag jana.
aaju dehu sab samsay naahi Mangu jo thohi bhav man maahi.

or Knowledge and discernment, dispassion and mystic wisdom,
or those numerous virtues which sages scarcely attain in the world.
today I will grant you all these; doubt not, but ask whatever your soul desires."

Suni Prabhubhachan adhik anuraaghua. Man anumaan karan thab lagavu.
Prabhu kah dhen sakal suk maahi Bhagathi aapani dhen na kahi.

On hearing the Lord's words, I (Kaka Bhushundi) was overwhelmed
with love and began to reason within myself:
"The Lord, it is true, has promised me all kinds of blessings
but has said nothing about the gift of Divine Love to Himself,

Bhagathiheen gun sab suk yise.Lavan bhina bhau bhyanjan jaise.
Bhajanheen suk kavane kaaja. as bhichari bolehu kaguraaja.

Without Divine Love (Prema Bhakti) all virtues and blessings
as insipid as any quantity of condiments without salt.
Of what avail is any blessing unaccompanied by 'sevAnanda'?"
Having thus pondered, O king of birds, I replied:

Jo Prabhu koi prasanna bar dehu.Mo per karahu Kripa aru nehu.
Man bhavath bar mangu Swami.Tumah udhaar ur Antharyaami.

"If Lord, you are pleased with me and would grant me a boon
and if you are kind and affectionate to me, then master,
I will ask the boon which my soul desires, for
you are generous and know the secrets of all hearts;

Aviral bhagathi vishuddha thava shruthi puran jo gaava.
Johi Khojath jogisi muni prabhuprasad kowu paava

it is that uninterrupted and unalloyed devotion to your Person
which the Vedas and the Puranas hymn,
which the greatest ascetics and the sages search after and
a few by my Lord's Grace can attain!

"O Lord, if You are pleased, grant me pure and deeprooted Prema bhakti."

Hearing this, the Lord granted him Prema Bhakti (sevAnanda)
and complimented him saying,

"Kaka, you are naturally clever. Why should you not ask for such a boon?
There is none more fortunate than you, as you have asked for Prema Bhakti
which is the source of all happiness. The Premi Bhakta is dear to Me indeed...
No one is dear to Me as My pure devotee!"

Uttarkand - Shri Ramacharita Manasa
kRSNa-premodgama, premAmRta-AsvAdana |
kRSNa-prApti, sevAmRta-samudre majjana || [CC 3.20.14]
Can you separate sakshatkara from prema? Is one a cart, the other a horse? Is one a chicken, the other an egg? Are they two sides of a coin? Can we say, "The goal of bhakti is prema, not sakshatkar?"