Insights into Gaura Tattva

The admission to the sweet service of Sri Sri Radha Krishna cannot be attained until a devotee completely surrenders himself to the Gaura Tattva. Surrender to Lord Gauranga is the only possible means to obtain eternal servitude to the divine couple in Goloka. Gaura tattva is the aspect of magnanimity that supports the aspect of sweetness for one to relish the sweet dealings of the divine couple. Thus “Audarya” (magnanimity), representing Gaura Tattva is the pre-requisite to Madhurya (sweetness), representing Radha tattva ,and both are not mutually exclusive.

As we understand the Gaura Tattva, it will be interesting to note that there are 3 aspects to tumblr_nkpmtt54vy1s0gs5so1_500devotional life in general and they are clearly an intrinsic part of Gaura “rasa”. They are the magnanimity of name, form and qualities. Let us understand the life of the great Lord of magnanimity. His life is again by divine arrangement sectioned into 3 namely Adi, Madhya and Antya or a life which has a tri-course flow. Similarly the 3 parts of Sriman Mahaprabhu’s (Lord Gauranga) life represents the 3 fold concepts of the Gaudiya Vaishnava principle namely Sambandha (relationship), Abhidhyeya (practice) and Prayojana (goal).There is a clear demarcation in the flow of Sriman Mahaprabhu’s life and precepts. If one surrenders oneself to the saga of Sriman Mahaprabhu there is no possibility that one can miss the ultimate purpose of all life.

Sriman Mahaprabhu in the Adi Leela is addressed as “Vishvambara”, in His pre-adulthood days especially at a time when He was a jaunty youngster full of life and verve. These were days when Vishvambara joked and painted the city red. He had sweet arguments with the poor vegetable seller Kholevecha Sridhar and bargained for pumpkins and banana leaves. He was the sweet-heart of Nadia, a scholar beyond compare defeating Dig-Vijayi (world beaters) pundits in the art of Sanskrit poetry. He was the heart-throb of Nadia, a youngster who represented the pulse of Nabadwipa and Nadia in general. He wore neatly ironed silk kurtas, adorned Himself with perfume and gold. Vishvambara represents “Sambandha” gyan (knowledge), the relationship of a living entity with Krishna, His life as Vishvambara represents heart and passion, the basis for any relationship. Adi Leela is full of these sweet anecdotes where the reader devotee establishes a deep relationship with Vishvambara, a permanent one. The form of Vishvambara is of an adolescent young lad with whom one will yearn to live with and experience, a lad with long lustrous hair and a gait which represents the “ideal” youth “God”.

In the Madhya Leela Sriman Mahaprabhu is addressed as “Gauranga”, the golden one, an adult who is becoming mature after having lost His father and after having to bid adieu to His elder brother Vishwaroop who has taken Sanyasa. This is a serious man who leaves for Gaya for conducting the last rites for His departed father. There He meets His eternal spiritual master Ishwara Puri. It is Ishwara Puri who realizes that he is in for a tryst with “Krishna Himself”. Gauranga’s meeting with His spiritual master is an inflection point. After having taken the Krishna Mantra, Gauranga is literally mad with Love for Godhead. His tongue continually rants the Holy name of the Lord. Gauranga is now no more an ordinary Sanskrit teacher. He can now only convey Krishna through the Sanskrit language and nothing else, every letter and word of Sanskrit is now Krishna for Him. Gauranga has now been transported to the realm where there is no other activity other than chanting the Holy name. His discourses and Nama Kirtanam along with His eternal associates Vasudeva Ghosh, Mukunda Datta, Sanjaya, Advaita Acarya, Nityananda, Haridas Thakhura, Srivasa Acarya during this phase of His life, representing the “Abhidhyeya” tattva, the process of devotional service. The Madhya Leela is a saga of discipline and service. It is in this phase of life where Lord Gauranga declares to the world that Hari Nama Sankirtana is the “Yuga Dharma” and there is no other recourse to be taken if one serious about the Absolute. He thus offers to the times to come the Hare Krishna Mahamantra that can save the world from the perils of Maya. Thus He set the standards for devotional service. This is also the time, that for the benefit of the human race He took Sanyasa from Keshava Bharati at Katwa. The form of Mahaprabhu is that of a well-shaved healthy Sanyasa with the “Danda” which represents discipline. The Danda of course was later broken by Nityananda Prabhu representing the aspect of unconditional “surrender”.  The quality displayed by Him is that of “koruna”, “Doya” (compassion) for the whole of humanity. It is during the time of Sanyasa that the name Krishna Chaitanya Mahaprabhu is conferred on Gauranga. At least 2 years of time was spent by Sriman Mahaprabhu to spread the Abhidhyeya Tattva as parivrajakacarya (touring monk) in the whole of South India. Most of the life of Sriman Mahaprabhu during the middle years was spent under the auspices of Lord Jagannath at Puri Dhama.

lcm14As the days of Lord Gauranga entered the last 12 years, He had already adorned the name Krishna Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, the monument of magnanimity. These were the years when Sriman Mahaprabhu truly represented the Prayojana Tattva as part of the Antya Leela or the final pastimes. The last 12 years of the life of Mahaprabhu were spent at the Gambhira in Puri. The word Gambhira signifies utter sobriety, sobriety towards the Ultimate Goal. These were the times when Sriman Mahaprabhu was lost in the mood of Srimati Radharani, in Her separation from Nandanandana. The witnesses to this Leela were the “parikaras”, the intimate eternal associates of Sriman Mahaprabhu who spiritually belong to the innermost circle of divinity. The foremost was the personal servant of Sriman Mahaprabhu, Govinda then Swarupa Damodara who is Srimati Lalita sakhi of the Krishna Leela, then Raya Ramananda who is none other than Vishakha Sakhi of the Krishna Leela. Sriman Mahaprabhu during those years displayed the highest ecstasies of Maha bhava, in mood and bodily symptoms. His body would get elongated and the limbs would just stretch separating themselves from the bones or at other times, the body would shrink and couch likes that of a tortoise as if there were no bones leaving the impression of a lump of flesh soaked in tears. A witness of Sriman Mahaprabhu’s form in those elevated moods would have surely attained an ounce of the mood of Srimati Radhika for Krishna. A witness to these moods of the Lord would have been a sure recipient of the Prayojana tattva, the Ultimate goal.

The life of Sri Gaura is the one point stop for a devout follower of the Gaudiya Vaishnava principle. One who is eager to enter the “rasa” or devotional mood exchange of the divine couple should as a no alternative , engage in a sincere and in-depth study of Lord Mahaprabhu’s life and identify oneself as His servant only. This is perhaps the only cranny passage available in the world today that can foster one to the eternal realm of Goloka!

%d bloggers like this: