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

The Bhajana-rahasya Text 28, 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 28 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.

Everyone should endeavour to attain knowledge of Śrī Kṛṣṇa (kṛṣṇasvarūpa ) and oneself (ātma-svarūpa). One first attains knowledge of Śrī Kṛṣṇa’s form and qualities, and then His pastimes. Catuḥ-ślokī Bhāgavata (2.9.33) states:

अहम् एवासम् एवाग्रे नान्यद् यत् सद्-असत् परम्
पश्चाद् अहं यद् एतच् च यो’वशिष्येत सो’स्म्य् अहम्

aham evāsam evāgre nānyad yat sad-asat param
paścād ahaṃ yad etac ca yo’vaśiṣyeta so’smy aham

[The Supreme Lord said to Brahmā:] Before the creation of this world, only I existed. The gross and the subtle, up to the indefinable brahma–in other words, the cause (sat) and the effect (asat)–did not exist. Nothing other than I existed. What is manifested in the form of creation is also I, after creation it is also I, and after annihilation only I will remain.

चिद्-घन-स्वरूप कृष्ण नित्य सनातन
कृष्ण-शक्ति परिणति अन्य सङ्घटन

cid-ghana-svarūpa kṛṣṇa nitya sanātana
kṛṣṇa-śakti pariṇati anya saṅghaṭana

सकलेर अवशेषे कृष्ण चिद्-भास्कर
अविचिन्त्य-भेदाभेद तत्त्व कृष्णेतर

sakalera avaśeṣe kṛṣṇa cid-bhāskara
avicintya-bhedābheda tattva kṛṣṇetara

Commentary: Bhajana-rahasya-vṛtti:

In this Text the words aham eva, meaning ‘certainly I’, are used three times. This is because Śrī Bhagavān is eternally present since time immemorial in His form endowed with all opulence. Bhagavān has used the words ‘certainly I’ three times to refute the doctrine of persons who consider Parabrahma to be without form. The implied meaning is, “Now I am present before you as a great ocean of supremely captivating beauty, qualities and sweetness. I was also present before this creation, or in other words, at the time of the mahā-pralaya (annihilation of the universe at the end of Brahmā’s life).” At that time, Bhagavān was performing all His activities, not only the act of creating the material world consisting of the five elements. His eternal, confidential pastimes, as well as His associates, who are assistants in His pastimes, were also existing. At the time of the mahā-pralaya, the material universes are destroyed, but Bhagavān’s transcendental pastimes and His various forms, abodes and intimate associates are all eternally existent.

The Supreme Lord is present both before and after the creation. The entire material world is the manifestation of His bahiraṅga-śakti, and the living entity is His taṭastha-śakti. Therefore, this material world is not separate from Him. Śrī Bhagavān is situated in unlimited Vaikuṇṭha planets in His form complete with the six opulences. In the material world, He is present as the Supersoul (antaryāmī), and He appears as Matsya and other incarnations when needed.

According to the impersonalists (nirviśeṣavādīs ), only the impersonal brahma existed at first. To defeat this doctrine, Śrī Bhagavān says to Brahmā, “Beyond the cause (sat ) and the effect (asat) is the supreme entity, brahma. That brahma is nothing other than Me. Few can perceive My personal form replete with transcendental pastimes; they can only realise the impersonal form (nirviśeṣa-svarūpa ). You, however, can apprehend My form full of transcendental beauty and all qualities, by My blessings and mercy.”

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