by Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura Mahasaya | 2010 | 123,965 words

The Bhajana-rahasya Text 2, English translation, including commentary (vritti). The Bhajana-rahasya is a compilation of verses describing the mercy of the eight pairs of names (Yugala-nama) of the Maha-mantra. This is text 2 belonging to the chapter “Dvitiya-yama-sadhana (Pratah-kaliya-bhajana)” representing the first six dandas of the morning: approximately 6.00 a.m.–8.30 a.m.

A prayer to attain attachment to the holy name is given in the fifth verse of Śrī Kṛṣṇa-nāmāṣṭaka:

अघ-दमन-यशोदा-नन्दनौ! नन्द-सूनो! कमल-नयन-गोपी-चन्द्र-वृन्दावनेन्द्राः!
प्रणत-करुण-कृष्णाव् इत्य् अनेक-स्वरूपे त्वयि मम रतिर् उच्चैर् वर्धतां नामधेय

agha-damana-yaśodā-nandanau! nanda-sūno! kamala-nayana-gopī-candra-vṛndāvanendrāḥ!
praṇata-karuṇa-kṛṣṇāv ity aneka-svarūpe tvayi mama ratir uccair vardhatāṃ nāmadheya

O Nāma, possessor of inconceivable glories, may my affection for You continue to increase, day and night. O Agha-damana! O Yaśodā-nandana! O Nanda-sūnu! O Kamala-nayana! O Gopīcandra! O Vṛndāvanendra! O Praṇata-karuṇa! O Kṛṣṇa! You have innumerable forms. May my attachment to them always increase.

Commentary: Bhajana-rahasya-vṛtti:

As the rāgānuga-sādhaka chants the holy name under the guidance of pure devotees, he prays to Nāma Prabhu in great distress, “O Nāma Prabhu, please manifest in my heart, along with Your pastimes that relate to each name.”

Agha-damana–“He who protected His friends by killing the demon Agha.” The word agha means ‘sin’ and damana means ‘to destroy’. He destroys the sins in the heart of the sādhaka, making it pure, and then He Himself comes to reside there. In relation to mādhurya-rasa, Agha-damana has another meaning: “He whose darśana destroys the gopīs’ feelings of separation and thus bestows great joy upon them.” During the day Śrī Kṛṣṇacandra goes to the forest, causing the vraja-sundarīs to burn in the fire of separation from Him. When He is with them at night, He relieves their burning in separation from Him, and He appears as pleasant as the cool moon as He enjoys many pleasurable activities in rāsa-līlā. Thus, He tastes mādhurya-prema-rasa.

Yaśodā-nandana–‘The son of Yaśodā’. All the good qualities of Kṛṣṇa’s affectionate mother are also found in Him. Therefore, one of His names is Yaśodā-nandana. Yaśo dadāti iti yaśodā. In other words, Mother Yaśodā is famous for her vātsalya-bhāva. The mood of this verse is, “May the compassionate Yaśodā-nandana, who possesses the same qualities as His mother, appear in my heart.”

Nanda-sūnu–‘The son of Nanda’.

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (10.8.46) states:

नन्दः किम् अकरोद् ब्रह्मन् श्रेय एवं महोदयम्
यशोदा च महा-भागा पपौ यस्याः स्तनं हरिः

nandaḥ kim akarod brahman śreya evaṃ mahodayam
yaśodā ca mahā-bhāgā papau yasyāḥ stanaṃ hariḥ

[Mahārāja Parīkṣit inquired:] What most auspicious activity did the very fortunate Nanda Bābā perform? And what kind of austerity did the supremely fortunate Yaśodā perform that the Supreme Lord Himself drank her breast milk with His lotus mouth?

By chanting this name of Kṛṣṇa, the sādhaka prays, “May the son of the supremely munificent and most fortunate Nanda Mahārāja, Nanda-nandana Śrī Kṛṣṇa, shower His mercy upon me.”

Kamala-nayana–‘Lotus-eyed one’. “May Kamala-nayana Śrī Kṛṣṇa, whose half-closed eyes resemble a red lotus due to His nocturnal amorous pastimes with His beloved vraja-devīs in the nikuñjas, manifest within my heart.”

Gopīcandra–‘The moon of the gopīs’. When Śrī Kṛṣṇa sees the rising full moon, remembrance of the moon-like faces of the vrajadevīs awakens in His heart.

Vṛndāvanendra–‘The Lord of Vṛndāvana’. This refers to He who makes the inhabitants of Vṛndāvana blissful by His unique quality of prema-mādhurya.

Praṇata-karuṇa–‘He who is merciful to the surrendered’. Śrī Kṛṣṇa displays His mercy and compassion to those who are surrendered to Him by making them taste His caraṇāmṛta. Remembering the mercy Kāliya-nāga received when Śrī Kṛṣṇa placed His lotus feet on Kāliya’s heads, the gopīs sing, “Praṇata-dehināṃ pāpa-karṣaṇam–Your lotus feet destroy the past sins of all souls who surrender unto them.”

Kṛṣṇa–This name is derived from the verbal root kṛṣ meaning ‘to attract’. Kṛṣṇa attracts everyone with His prema-mādhurya, and in this way, bestows the bliss of divine love upon them.

Devotees pray according to their transcendental sentiments;thus the Supreme Lord appears to them according to their prayers and makes them joyful. The sādhaka chants a specific name of the Supreme Lord to increase his attachment to Nāma Prabhu.

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