A Parikara is the most advanced topic in the field of Bhakti to understand. This cannot be understood by any living entity unless the Supreme Lord qualifies the living entity based on the grit and “tapasya” of the living entity for the sake of the welfare of the entire creation however insignificant the living entity may appear to be. This is the ultimate benediction that the Supreme can bestow on the living entity simply by the extension of the minute “Free-will” of the living entity who even challenges the Supreme Lord though the living entity is “unfit” and will continue to be unfit in all respects. This is the power of “Prema” that will make the “Lord” an “eternal servant” of that living entity where the Lord is forced to change the course of the entire creation looking at the innocence of living entity. Such a living entity is a “Parikara”.
In the Leela of Sriman Mahaprabhu, He was accompanied by many Angas and upangas (Main limbs and sub-limbs). The extent of Prema in each of these “parikaras” was so phenomenal that the eternal concepts were upgraded several times during the course of the Mahaprabhu Leela that happened in this tiny corner of the multi-verse. The Angas are the eternal associates of the Lord who belonged to the inner circle of the Lord. These are namely Swarupa Damodara, Raya Ramananda and Govinda who was the eternal servant of the munificent Avatara of the divine couple that is the direct witnesses of the Prema Leela at Gambhira. The upangas are the other lines of devotees which included categories of eternal sadhakas like Rupa Santana and eternal empowered incarnations like Srila Acarya Adwaita and Prabhu Nityananda. We shall see the intricate nuances of parikaras in the succeeding section.
The different types of Parikaras are Nitya Parikaras, Siddha Parikaras, saktyavesa Avatars, combined Incarnations and so-on. The categories of Parikaras get upgraded continuously in the field of Bhakti from time to time depending on the “need” of the Kalpa or individualized field of social consciousness. The “Absolute“ is the complete manifestation of the entire field of consciousness. Examples of Absolute personification of the same are Sri Krishna Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and Sri Sri Radha Krishna, in that order. Parikaras are individualized field of consciousness who have been servants of the Lord eternally. Non-Parikaras is the rest of creation. Among Parikaras there may be Mukhya Parikaras (main associates) and Gaun Parikaras or Siddha Parikaras (sub-associates of the Lord who assist the mukhya Parikaras). Nitya Parikaras are those associates who have never been on the plane of the mundane and will continue to be in that state of consciousness even if they arrive on the plane of the mundane uncountable times by the sweet will of the Lord. Such Parikaras are not empowered and they are not human. They are the aspects of divinity who understand the mood of the Absolute at all times. Examples are Swarupa Damodara and Raya Ramananda. Siddha Parikaras are those who have been empowered by Nitya Parikaras during the course of a particular incarnation. These Parikaras are similar to the Nitya Parikaras, even these Parikaras remain oblivious of nature of “jeeva” although they have appeared millions of life-times to assist Nitya Parikaras. They always remain under the care and command of the Nitya Parikaras. Saktyavesa Avatars are not Parikaras but for the welfare of humanity depending on time place and circumstances, the Lord may project these Saktyavesa Avatars as Parikara but in fact such people are just extraordinary living entities whose heart bleeds for the baddha jeevas. However during the course of subsequent incarnations, the Saktyavesa Avatars may achieve the post of Parikaras depending on the sweet will of the Absolute. The combined incarnations are also parikaras of a special kind who may or may not be Siddha Parikaras. The Absolute gives them a mixed status. Examples of these are Kholovecha Sridhar , Haridasa Thakhura etc. Kholovecha Sridhar was a combined incarnation of Kumsumasava of Vrindavana Leela and that of Sri Vidura or the Dwaraka leela. The understanding of a combined incarnation is the particular associate of the Lord who displays transcendental emotions of multiple incarnations for a specific effect on humanity.