Celebrating Sri Gaura Purnima

Śrīla Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswāmī Mahārāj describes the joy in the devotees’ hearts.

My dear devotees and friends, we are so fortunate to be assembled here in Śrī Chaitanya Sāraswat Maṭh, which is a supremely sacred place within this world. We are often saying that Śrī Nabadwīp Dhām is a ‘holy place’, but really we consider that it is much more than that. In this material world, we are suffering through death and birth, happiness and sadness, and so many things. We cannot cross these natural laws. But if we take a little sincere interest in being rescued from this material world—from the specific gravity of the illusory environment—if we want to rescue ourselves from this world and become members of the holiest place within Vaikuṇṭhaloka—Śrī Goloka Vṛndāvan Dhām, where infinite auspiciousness and happiness are always existing—then we must surrender in this place of Śrī Koladwīp Dhām within Śrī Nabadwīp Dhām. Śrīla Guru Mahārāj, Om Viṣṇupād Śrīla Bhakti Rakṣak Śrīdhar Dev-Goswāmī Mahārāj, has arranged all of this for us and this ashram here on bank of the holy river Ganges: Śrī Chaitanya Sāraswat Maṭh. Śrīla Guru Mahārāj has chosen this place, which has been described in the scriptures and has come down to this material world from Vaikuṇṭhaloka for us because we are always doing many offensive things and suffering through the great disturbances created by the reactions to that life after life. All our offences will go away if we surrender in this place, Śrī Aparādha-bhañjan-pāṭ, where Śrīman Mahāprabhu forgives all sinners’ offences.

Śrī Chaitanya Sāraswat Maṭh began as a very simple thatched ashram but has now developed in to what Śrīla Guru Mahārāj divinely envisioned and expressed in his verse,

śrīmach-chaitanya-sārasvata-maṭhavara udgīta-kīrtir jayaśrīṁ
bibhrat sambhāti gaṅgā-taṭa-nikaṭa-navadvīpa-kolādrirāje
yatra śrī-gaura-sārasvata-mata-niratā gaura-gāthā gṛṇanti
śrīmad-rūpānuga śrī-kṛtamati-guru-gaurāṅga-rādhā-jitāśā
(Śrīla Bhakti Rakṣak Śrīdhar Dev-Goswāmī Mahārāj)

In this verse Śrīla Guru Mahārāj expresses that here in this very beautiful ashram of Śrī Chaitanya Sāraswat Maṭh on the bank of the Ganges Śrī Śrī Guru Gaurāṅga Gāndharvā Govindasundar will accept the service of the surrendered souls who will very happily engage in honouring mahāprasadam, serving Guru and Vaiṣṇava, and engaging in the nine forms of devotional practice—hearing, chanting and glorifying the divine Name and Pastimes of Lord, remembering, honouring, worshipping, praying, serving, befriending and full surrendering to the Lord.

Śrīla Guru Mahārāj gave this name ‘Śrī Chaitanya Sāraswat Maṭh’, and it is so beautiful. Maṭh means maṭhanti vasanti chhātra yatra maṭha, a place where religious students live. So ‘Śrī Chaitanya Sāraswat Maṭh’ means the place where students of Śrī Chaitanya Mahāprabhu and Bhagavān Śrīla Bhakti Siddhānti Saraswatī Goswāmī Ṭhākur live and learn. We heard Śrīla Guru Mahārāj himself in many of his lectures say, “I am also a student.” A student means one who is always listening to his master. So Śrī Chaitanya Sāraswat Maṭh means the place where we are always listening to Śrīman Mahāprabhu, Śrīla Saraswatī Ṭhākur and our Śrīla Guru Mahārāj.

All the devotees of Śrī Chaitanya Sāraswat Maṭh are also always teaching me. What do they teach me? Humility, tolerance, and giving honour to others. Humility must be practiced no doubt, but tolerance is extremely necessary. And giving honour to others is Vaiṣṇava religion. A Vaiṣṇava never digests honour. A Vaiṣṇava always offers any honour that comes to them to their Guru. Prabhupād Saraswat Ṭhākur said wealth is for Nārāyaṇ, women are for Kṛṣṇa and pratiṣṭhā is for Gurudev. Tomāra pratiṣṭhā,—śūkarera biṣṭhā: if you try to digest honour for yourself, it will be like eating the stool of a pig. Āsakti-rahita sambandha-sahita viṣaya-samūha sakali Mādhava: without attachment, you must always connected everything with the Lord. That is our procedure.

śrī Chaitanya Sāraswat Maṭh has now arranged all over the world the practising process described in the scriptures and given by Śrī Chaitanya Mahāprabhu.

harer nāma harer nāma harer nāmaiva kevalam
kalau nāsty eva nāsty eva nāsty eva gatir anyathā

The Holy Name, the Holy Name, the Holy Name—there is no other way, there is no other way, there is no other way.”

Mahāprabhu Himself told this and would preach, “It is not necessary to read a Ganges full of scriptures; it is not necessary to do anything except chant the Holy Name of Lord.” But if you do read the Holy Books, everywhere you will find that this process of chanting the Lord’s Holy Name is the best for this Age of Kali. Mahāprabhu said, however, that if you want to chant the Holy Name of Lord purely, then it is necessary to follow three directives.

tṛṇād api sunīchena taror iva sahiṣṇunā
amāninā māna-dena kīrtanīyaḥ sadā hariḥ
(Śrī Chaitanya-charitāmṛta, Ādi-līlā, 17.31)

Be humble, be tolerant and given honour to everyone.”

This is necessary because the Lord existing everywhere—in everyone’s heart. That will be revealed to us through chanting, and when we will get connection with the transcendental form of Lord, all inauspiciousness will go out from us, everything will be set right, the reactionary environment leave us, and we will get a positive connection with the transcendental world which is full of love, affection, sincerity, and chastity. Everything is beautiful and harmless there. There, life is eternal, and time is eternal. Everything is eternal there, and we will get an opportunity to live within that eternal world by chanting the Lord’s Holy Name with a pure mood of humility, tolerance, and giving honour to others.

jīvera svarūpa haya—kṛṣṇera nitya-dāsa
kṛṣṇera taṭasthā-śakti bhedābheda-prakāśa
(Śrī Chaitanya-charitāmṛta: Madhya-līlā, 20.108)

All souls are really servitors of Śrī Kṛṣṇa; that is the real identity of every soul. They are forgetting that, however, and are polluted by the illusory environment. The Lord’s illusory environment is called mahāmaya. We cannot avoid that association of mahāmaya: all our behaviour—everything we do—is influenced by mahāmāyā. We are seeing that. But if we are determined to try to avoid it and want to clean ourselves from the illusory environment, then it becomes possible. Bhagavān Chaitanyadev said, “Chant the Holy Name of Lord Kṛṣṇa. So many Names of the Lord have appeared in this material world by the grace of Lord Kṛṣṇa. If you take any of His Holy Names, you can clean your own self.”

Mahāprabhu first gave honour to Kṛṣṇa-saṅkīrtan this way. Cheto-darpaṇa-mārjanaṁ, first our mind, the cover of our transcendental form—our soul—must come to a clean position. Then we will see our proper existence. It is like a mirror. If a mirror is very dirty, we cannot see our face or figure in the mirror. But when it is clean, then we can see our self within the mirror. We are souls; we are servitors of Lord Kṛṣṇa; we are members of the transcendental world. All of this will be revealed to us when we chant the Holy Name of Lord Kṛṣṇa. For this reason Mahāprabhu said, “Paraṁ vijayate: may Kṛṣṇa-saṅkīrtan is supremely victorious!”

Kṛṣṇa-saṅkīrtan is the supreme opportunity for all conditioned souls. It is no problem for us to stay anywhere in this world if we follow these directives of Śrī Chaitanya Mahāprabhu and chant the Hare Kṛṣṇa Mahāmantra in this Age of Kali. So be happy, chant the Holy Name of Lord, and serve everyone by distributing the Holy Name and the method given by Śrī Chaitanya Mahāprabhu. Others will be benefitted and you will get benefitted—everyone will be benefitted by this. “Satyam śivam sundaram: everything is truthful, everything is very auspicious, and everything is so beautiful.” This mentality, this happiness, this atmosphere, will come to everyone if they sincerely practice Kṛṣṇa consciousness in line of Śrīman Mahāprabhu.

Śrīla Guru Mahārāj established this Maṭh here in Koladwīp for the spiritual welfare of everyone. If anyone will come here and stay for few days, they will feel how much auspiciousness and happiness comes in the heart through this process. Hare Kṛṣṇa.

Kṛṣṇa is so merciful and has given us such opportunity to stay here in Śrī Chaitanya Sāraswat Maṭh. So as possible by us, we must try to practice. There is no consideration of creed, criterion, or caste here. Here, we are all simply in the boat proceeding to Goloka Vṛndāvan, and everyone is happy. Our spiritual programme is very nice, and twenty-four hours a day our programme is running. Everyone follows that program and is so benefitted.

Service is our life, and that service is for the Lord, for the servitors of the Lord, and also for the general people of this world. It is necessary to do good for others and to do good for ourselves. Mahāprabhu said,

bhārata-bhūmite haila manuṣya janma yāra
janma sārthaka kari’ kara para-upakāra
(Śrī Chaitanya-charitāmṛta, Ādi-līlā, 9.41)

First rescue yourselves, then try to spread this conception to others; they will be benefitted.”

Life and death are uncertain in this material world, but we should not be concerned about that. Rather, we should always be concerned about our practicing procedure—about what will give super benefit to us in our spiritual and material lives. We do not know what is good for us, but we do know that Kṛṣṇa will always arrange what is good for us. So, we are not fearful of any circumstance. Rather we simply do our best to harmonise with all circumstances which come to us and try to proceed to our destination, that is, serving the Lord in Goloka Vṛndāvan.

Goloka Vṛndāvan was also present here in this material world before, and modern science tells us that nothing is ever created or destroyed, so why can”t we connect with that transcendental world? If we have a pure process, we must get connection with that transcendental world and transcendent service. Through pure practice, everything will come to us; we will march forward through everything and attain our super benefit. If we are a sincere seeker, we must attain that without difficulty.

So, we must try with heart and soul. We have only one life in hand, and when we have full sense—full ability to think, feel and will, then why won’t we use our capacity to cross over this wave of material attraction and attain our transcendental destiny.

uttiṣṭha jāgrata prāpya varān nibodhat
(Kaṭha-upaniṣad: 1.3.14)

If we do not use our capacity for thinking, feeling and willing, then we will act like nothing more than a stone. We are souls—living entities with consciousness, and our actions are governed by our desires. So, with this life we have in hand, we must try for our super spiritual benefit.

We are trying to do this, and not only in this ashram, we have been invited so many places in this world, and we are going everywhere and preaching this conception given by our Guru Mahārāj and Chaitanya Mahāprabhu. In this age, this conception is supreme, and any practitioner who practises it will get the proper result. That is Śrīla Guru Mahārāj’s gift we know. Hare Kṛṣṇa.

My english is poor. My health is also poor. All I have may be poor, but I am not poor! We are all actually part and parcel of Lord Kṛṣṇa: we have a spiritual body with the ability to think, feel and will, and we know will get a connection with our Lord if we engage in this practice. So why won’t we try? We must try.

We cannot say how much benefit will come to us through our connection with the transcendental world.

aṇor aṇīyān mahato mahīyān
(Kaṭha-upaniṣad: 1.2.20)

If one small part and parcel of the light of that transcendental world can move the body of an elephant—can create an atomic blast, then how powerful is everything in that world? From our position in this world, we may not be able to understand. But Hanumānjī knows: he can cross over the ocean in one leap. Actually, everything is possible by the grace of Lord, and when we realise something of the character of the sādhus, ṛṣis, and munis, we will understand more and more of that.

Anyhow, it is my request, and not only my request, but the request of Mahāprabhu also, “Whoever has a human life, use it properly and attain your super benefit.” The Upaniṣads also said, “Śṛṇvantu viśve amṛtasya putrā: divine nectar is waiting for your to taste it. Why do you not come forward and accept it?” This is the news that comes to us from the Vedic literature—from Śrī Chaitanya Mahāprabhu and His associates led by Śrīla Guru Mahārāj.

At present we are seeing that all over the world so many auspicious souls are chanting the Holy Name of the Lord, getting good results, and coming here to Śrī Chaitanya Sāraswat Maṭh to celebrate Śrī Gaura Pūrṇimā. Seeing all their faces, we can see how happy they are, but we cannot express how happy we are. All we can say is that we are very, very happy to see the presence of devotees from all over this world assembled here for this festival. By the grace of Śrīla Guru Mahārāj, Om Viṣṇupad Śrīla Bhakti Rakṣak Śrīdhar Dev-Goswāmī Mahārāj, Śrī Kṛṣṇa, Mahāprabhu Chaitanyadev, and Śrī Nityānanda Prabhu have bestowed Their mercy upon us and given us the opportunity to do Nabadwīp Dhām parikramā. Otherwise, it would not be possible.

For some days you have all been here and have no doubt felt much disturbance regarding your eating and sleeping arrangements. As possible by us, we are arranging everything for the devotees and the sincere seekers who want to do Nabadwīp Dhām parikramā with us and giving them the opportunity to go everywhere throughout these nine islands of Śrī Nabadwīp Dhām so that they can see the divine land of Śrīman Mahāprabhu in the association of the devotees and take everything into their devoted hearts. We have given the charge to arrange this festival and parikramā to Śrīpād Bhakti Nirmal Āchārya Mahārāj.

It is by the service of Śrīla Bhakti Vinod Ṭhākur and through the preaching of Bhagavān Śrīla Bhakti Siddhānti Saraswatī Ṭhākur that we are so fortunate as to have this opportunity to do Nabadwīp Dhām parikramā. Śrīman Mahāprabhu appeared in Nabadwīp five hundred years ago in a special quarter known as Māyāpur, where at present we can see a great Temple. This site of Mahāprabhu’s birthplace was lost after Mahāprabhu’s Pastimes in this world and later rediscovered by Śrīla Bhakti Vinod Ṭhākur. Because the course of the Ganges, which is always going this way and that way, has changed since the time of Mahāprabhu and the towns in the area of Nabadwīp have also changed places, the actual site of Mahāprabhu’s appearance was lost. Through meditation, the inspiration of sādhus like Jagannāth Dās Bābājī and Gaura Kiśora Dās Bābājī, and the guidance of Mahāprabhu Himself, Bhakti Vinod Ṭhākur was able to relocate Mahāprabhu’s birthplace. When Bhakti Vinod Ṭhākur came to the site he had seen in meditation, he asked the local people, “Why is this land neglected?” They replied, “We cannot grow anything here. Nothing we plant ever becomes fruitful. Only tulasī grows here no matter what we plant.”

Later, after the Temple at Mahāprabhu’s birthplace had been established and everyone knew this was Mahāprabhu’s birthplace, an antithesis came. Thesis, antithesis, synthesis—this is natural. One man tried to misguide people by establishing another place as Mahāprabhu’s birthplace by calling it ‘Prachin Māyāpur’ [‘Ancient Māyāpur’]. Śrīla Bhakti Vinod Ṭhākur brought documents from London and proved everything. There is a book published by Śrī Chaitanya Maṭh about this, and if you read that, you will understand easily the proper site of Mahāprabhu’s birth in Māyāpur. Now so many glorious disciples of Śrīla Bhakti Siddhānta Saraswati Ṭhākur and followers of Śrīla Bhakti Vinod Ṭhākur have established Temples there and made Māyāpur so glorious.

Our Nabadwīp Dhām parikramā festival has been running since 1948. It happened one year before this, and then was stopped, but it has continued every year without fail since 1948 by the grace of Śrīla Guru Mahārāj.

When our parikramā started, only about 70 or 75 persons joined with us, and they were not all our Maṭh’s disciples. Some were disciples of Śrīpad Jājāvar Mahārāj and Śrīpad Goswāmī Mahārāj. Maybe fifteen or twenty were our disciples, and fifty or sixty were from other Maṭhs. But we were all very enthusiastic to do parikramā, and Śrīla Guru Mahārāj supplied us with that enthusiasm. Our Nabadwīp Dhām parikramā started in this way, and up to today you are seeing thousands and thousands of people doing parikramā with us. We are distributing tens of thousands of plates of prasādam, and I am very happy to see that. It is all the grace and blessings of Śrīla Guru Mahārāj that we can organise this parikramā and participate in this festival on Śrī Gaurāṅga Mahāprabhu’s appearance day on Phalguṇ Purṇimā. Śrīman Mahāprabhu appeared on this day in the evening.

sandhyā samāgama  tapana magana
keno hema ghana kole
aparūpa kata   pūraba parvvata
suvarṇa chandramā bhāle
(Śrī Śrī Gaurasundarer Avirbhāv Vasare: 7)

Śrīla Guru Mahārāj composed this verse describing the atmosphere at the time of Mahāprabhu’s appearance. During the evening, just as it was turning into night, on the day of a lunar eclipse, as all the people of Nabadwīp—thousands and thousands of people—were bathing in the Ganges and chanting the Holy Names of the Lord, which they would never do normally, Śrīman Mahāprabhu appeared. Śrīla Kṛṣṇa Dās Kavirāj Goswāmī also composed a song describing this. Every year Śrīla Guru Mahārāj would engage me to sing this song for our Gaura Purṇimā festival, and still I am trying to sing that song every year.

nadīyā-udayagiri pūrṇachandra gaurahari
kṛpā kari’ ha-ila udaya
pāpa-tamaḥ haila nāśa trijagatera ullāsa
jagabhari’ hari-dhvani haya
(Śrī Chaitanya-charitāmṛta: Ādi-līlā, 13.98)

When, by His causeless mercy, the full moon Śrī Gaurahari arose in the district of Nadīyā—the eastern land of the rising sun—the darkness of sin was dispelled and the three worlds rejoiced as the whole universe resounded with the transcendental vibration of the Lord’s Holy Name—‘Hari! Hari!’”

Today is that appearance day of Śrī Śachī Nandan Gaurahari, the combined form Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa. So many incarnations of the Lord have appeared in this world. In India, we have seen Matsya, Kūrma, Vāman, and so forth. But none are like Śrī Kṛṣṇa Chaitanyadev, and none have given here or anywhere what He has distributed. This has been described by Śrīla Rūpa Goswāmī Prabhu,

anarpita-charīṁ chirāt karuṇayāvatīrṇaḥ kalau
samarpayitum unnatojjvala-rasāṁ svabhakti-śriyam
hariḥ puraṭa-sundara-dyuti-kadamba-sandīpitaḥ
sadā hṛdaya-kandare sphuratu vaḥ śachī-nandanaḥ
(Śrī Chaitanya-charitāmṛta: Ādi-līlā, 1.4)

[“May the brilliantly golden, beautifully radiant Lord Śrī Śachī-nandan Gaurahari always be resplendently manifest in the core of your heart. He has descended in the Age of Kali to  distribute the treasure of His own prema—supremely exalted madhura-rasa, which has never before been revealed in this mundane world.”]

It is not difficult to understand that Mahāprabhu is the Yugāvatār for Kali-yuga. This proved throughout the scriptures.

suvarṇa-varṇo hemāṅgo varāṅgaś chandanāṅgadī
sannyāsa-kṛch chhamaḥ śānto niṣṭhā-śānti-parāyaṇaḥ

[“When the the Lord appears as Śrī Gaurāṅga, in His early pastimes His complexion will be golden, His limbs will be the most desirable colour of molten gold, His body will be extremely beautiful, and He will be adorned with sandalwood paste and flower garlands. In His later Pastimes, He  will accept sannyās, teach the qualities of equanimity and peacefulness, and enact Pastimes as the supreme abode of ecstatic devotion.”]

kṛṣṇa-varṇaṁ tviṣākṛṣṇaṁ sāṅgopāṅgāstra-pārṣadam
yajñaiḥ saṅkīrtana-prāyair yajanti hi su-medhasaḥ
(Śrīmad Bhāgavatam: 11.5.32)

In the Age of Kali, fortunate souls qualified with theistic intelligence will take shelter of Śrī Kṛṣṇa Chaitanya Mahāprabhu, the golden form of the Lord who constantly chants the Holy Name and worship Him by performing the mahāyajña of Hari-nām-saṅkīrtan.”

This is a verse from Śrīmad Bhāgavatam that described the symptoms of the Kali-Yugāvatār. Through this śloka we can easily recognise that He is Mahāprabhu.

mahān-prabhur vai puruṣaḥ sattvasy aiśaḥ pravartakaḥ
sunirmalam imam prāptiṁ iśāno jyotir vyayaḥ
(Śvetāśvatara-upaniṣad: 3.12)

[“Śrī Mahāprabhu, the Supreme Master, is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He is the originator of all existence. By His grace, one can obtain the ultimate purity—divine love for Kṛṣṇa. He is the infinitely effulgent—golden—Supreme Controller.”]

itthaṁ nṛ-tiryag-ṛṣi-deva-jhaṣāvatārair
lokān vibhāvayasi haṁsi jagat pratīpān
dharmaṁ mahā-puruṣa pāsi yugānuvṛttaṁ
channaḥ kalau yad abhavas tri-yugo ‘tha sa tvam
(Śrīmad Bhāgavatam: 7.9.38)

Mahāprabhu’s form as the Yugāvatār is easy to identify through many verses in the scriptures. But to identify Him not an Avatār of Kṛṣṇa, but Avatārī Kṛṣṇa—Svayam Bhagavān Kṛṣṇa Himself appearing to taste the mood of Rādhārāṇī—is difficult. To understand that Avatārī Kṛṣṇa appeared in the form of a Yugāvatār with the heart and halo of Rādhārāṇī in the form of Mahāprabhu is difficult. Yugāvatār Mahāprabhu is easy to recognise, but when the Power and Powerful both come down in a combined form to this mundane level to taste the ecstasy of supreme paramour love is not so easy to recognise.

The first person to fully recognise Mahāprabhu’s internal form was Rāmānanda Rāy.

pahile dekhilu̐ tomāra sannyāsi-svarūpa
ebe tomā dekhi muñi śyāma-gopa-rūpa
tomāra sammukhe dekhi kāñchana-pañchālikā
tā̐ra gaura-kāntye tomāra sarva aṅga ḍhākā
(Śrī Chaitanya-charitāmṛta: Madhya-līlā, 8.268–9)

On the banks of the Godāvarī, Rāmānanda Rāy said to Mahāprabhu, “At first I saw You as a glorious sannyāsī, but now I am seeing that internally You are Kṛṣṇa Himself covered by the halo of Rādhārāṇī. You cannot hide Your divine form from me. You are the combined form of Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa. I am seeing that. You have taken Rādhārāṇī’s halo and heart and become Gaurāṅga Mahāprabhu.” Mahāprabhu replied, “Oh! You are a great devotee of Kṛṣṇa, and therefore You are seeing Kṛṣṇa within Me.” But Rāmānanda Rāy replied, “No no no. You cannot cheat me. You cannot hide Your true identity from me. I am seeing who You are.”

Then Mahāprabhu showed Rāmānanda Rāy His full form as Rādhā-bhāva-dyuti-suvalitam: Kṛṣṇa Himself manifest with Rādhārāṇī’s heart and halo. Seeing this full form of Mahāprabhu, Rāmānanda Rāy fainted, and when he got back his normal consciousness, he again saw Mahāprabhu as a sannyāsī. Then Mahāprabhu said to Rāmānanda Rāy, “No one will see this form of Mine, though it is My true form. You also should not tell others about this.”

In this way the hidden treasure of Mahāprabhu’s identity was first revealed to Rāmānanda Rāy. Later, that consciousness was spread everywhere by Śrīla Rūpa Goswāmī Prabhu.

When describing Kṛṣṇa, Śrīla Rūpa Goswāmī wrote:

(Śrī Chaitanya-charitāmṛta: Madhya-līlā: 23.82–3)

Everyone is stunned and astonished by the waves of the divine Pastimes of Vrajendra Nandan Śrī Kṛṣṇa: He plays His infinitely attractive flute song as He is surrounded by His supremely qualified intimate associates—the Vraja-vāsīs and Vraja-gopīs—in five types of relationships—śānta, dasya, sakhya, vatsalya, and madhura. In those Pastimes, His divine form is supremely beautiful.”

Śrīla Rūpa Goswāmī also explains that beauty equal to Kṛṣṇa’s cannot be seen in Baladev, Nārāyaṇ, Saṅkarṣaṇ, in the other forms of the Chatur-vyuha, or anywhere else and that even Kṛṣṇa Himself is astonished by the beauty of His divine form. When He stands in front of a mirror, He wants to embrace His own image. He forgets He is looking into a mirror, and thinks, “A second divine form of Myself is here in front of Me. Who is that? Is it Me or My picture?” He becomes greatly eager to embrace His form but He cannot.

When Rādhārāṇī comes in front of Kṛṣṇa, She can immediately embrace Kṛṣṇa. What kind of ecstasy does She feel in Her heart when She faints as She embraces Kṛṣṇa? That type of ecstatic love Kṛṣṇa cannot taste without Her mercy. And just to taste that love, He appeared with Her heart and halo in the form of Gaurāṅga. To taste Her loving mood of devotion and His own beauty, Kṛṣṇa actually stole the heart and halo of Rādhārāṇī and became Gaurāṅga Mahāprabhu.

This is the hidden form of Mahāprabhu. But who can recognise it? It is not the form of a Yugāvatār. Actually, what Mahāprabhu showed in His Pastimes is not possible for any other Avatār. Only if the Supreme Personality of Godhead sdescend with the heart and halo of Rādhārāṇī can He show the symptoms of atigūḍha mahābhāva and the exclusive devotion of madhura-rasa. Nowhere else in any other Avatār did the Lord appear in this way. A Yugāvatār will never appear with the heart and halo Rādhārāṇī. A Yugāvatār’s function is to preach Hari-nām-saṅkīrtan. Śrīpād Swāmī Mahārāj Prabhupād was like a Yugāvatār: he gave the Kṛṣṇa conception to the whole world. That is the work of a Yugāvatār. But Kṛṣṇa appeared with the heart and halo of Rādhārāṇī for His own interest, not for us. He appeared to taste the mood of extreme paramour devotion for Himself. Mahāprabhu’s Avatār is considered in this way by Kṛṣṇa Dās Kavirāj Goswāmī, Jīva Goswāmī, Rūpa Goswāmī, and Svarūp Dāmodar.

That divine form of Śrīman Mahāprabhu appeared today, and we are celebrating that here in our Śrī Chaitanya Sāraswat Maṭh by the grace of Śrīla Guru Mahārāj.

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