Rare Gems- Vilapa Kusumanjali

Even giving an introduction to Vilapa Kusumanjali, the finest creation by Das Goswami (Raghunatha Das) is like offering a wick to the Sun. This greatest of creations in Gaudiya History is the most confidential, most exotic and foremost writing; a prayer of Viraha Agni (Fire of Separation) offered at the Lotus feet of Swamini (Srimati Radha) by her maid-servant (Das Goswami as Tulasi manjari). This work is an outpour of transcendental love-in-separation of Das Goswami for Srimatiji in his manjari swarupa or his eternal siddha deha (spiritual body). Just as a swan sings his most beautiful, cathartic and immensely pitiable song just before his death, Srila Rupa and Dasa Goswami wrote the most exquisite and unparalleled works at the fag end of their seeming material existence.

raghunatha-dasa-goswamiThe manjari Bhava Sadhana is the rarest spiritual jewel of all known practices that can be in Bhakti that has been handed over in absolute confidence by Sriman Mahaprabhu for the fallen souls of Kali. Das Goswami’s Vilapa Kusumanjali is the most mature revelation of this manjari bhava upasana. One who considers this great work as one’s heart and soul will attain one’s swarupa in this very lifetime while still embodied if undertaken under the auspices of a perfect Guru in the parampara of the families of Radha Kunda.  These rare prayers of Dasa Goswami are dedicated to the personal service of Srimati Radharani. Srila Dasa Goswami was already elevated beyond all body consciousness and was imbued in Lila rasa, the most clandestine flavour of the erotic transcendental pastimes of Sri Sri Radha Krishna in Vraja. Day and night Dasa Goswami wept for the service of Swamini on the banks of Sri Radhakunda, the holiest of all abodes in the three worlds. Dasa Goswami spent more than half a century at Radhakunda. That is why this rare gem is called Vilapa Kusumanjali or “A bouquet of transcendental lamentations”.  The feelings of Dasa Goswami when he created this great gem are described in Bhakti Ratnakara. The author of Bhakti Ratnakara Srila Narhari Chakravarthy says “Dasa Goswami wept continuously during those days lamenting Ha Rupa, Ha Sanatana where have you gone thus leaving me alone. Dasa Goswami floated and drowned in his own tears and rolled in the dust of Radhakunda area. His body became extremely weak. He would eat dry bread once in three or four days. His body was so frail that he could be easily blown away by a gust of wind. Still he would perform his daily duties with immaculate regularity. When he met other Vaishnavas, he would fall flat to pay obeisance to them but would not have strength to get up anymore. Out of concern fellow Vaishnavas would forbid him to pay such prostrations but Dasa Goswami would never listen to them out of extreme humility. He would forget himself when he worshiped Goverdhana Shila and the gunja beads that Lord Chaitanya had given him. He never knew whether it was day or night as he chanted Sri Radha and Krishna’s transcendental names. Who can even have a glimpse of Das Goswami’s heart which was perennially immersed in the mood of separation of Lord Chaitanya and the divine couple? There was no sleepiness in his eyes and his eyes would brim with tears of love-in-separation all the time.

Every verse in the prayers named Vilapa Kusumanjali is made of the tears of Sripada Dasa Goswami shed out of separation from Srimati Radharani; every flower-like lamentation is filled with the honey of transcendental grief. Vilapa Kusumanjali makes it evident that those devotional practitioners who meditate upon themselves as being exclusive maid-servants of Srimati Radhika prefer that service strongly , a million times over than being qualified as a servant to Krishna, anytime. This mood is called Radha Snehadhika or Bhavollasa Rati, a technical term as described by Sri Rupa Goswami in the grantha (holy book) Ujjvala Nilamani. The practitioners mentally conceive themselves as twelve year old spiritual maid-servants of Sriji, although their gross physical body maybe male. As they train their minds in this conception, they may by the grace of Guru and Srimati Radharani attain this very same spiritual form in the spiritual world after they become liberated from material embodied existence. Sri Krishna Himself gives an example in the Bhagavat Gita by saying “ O Son of Kunti, Whatever one thinks of at the time of death , that one shall surely attain.”

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