Bhajana-Rahasya

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

The Bhajana-rahasya Text 22, 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 22 belonging to the chapter “Caturtha-yama-sadhana (Madhyahna-kaliya-bhajana–ruci-bhajana)” representing from the second prahara until three-and-a-half praharas: approximately 11.00 a.m.–3.30 p.m.

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (4.22.39) states:

यत्-पाद-पङ्कज-पलाश-विलास-भक्त्या कर्माशयं ग्रथितम् उद्ग्रथयन्ति सन्तः
तद्वन् न रिक्त-मतयो यतयो’पि रुद्धस्रोतो-गणास् तम् अरणं भज वासुदेवम्

yat-pāda-paṅkaja-palāśa-vilāsa-bhaktyā karmāśayaṃ grathitam udgrathayanti santaḥ
tadvan na rikta-matayo yatayo’pi ruddhasroto-gaṇās tam araṇaṃ bhaja vāsudevam

[Śrī Sanat Kumāra instructed Pṛthu Mahārāja:] The devotees of Śrī Bhagavān are easily able to cut the knot in the heart, in the form of desires for fruitive activities, by meditating upon the splendour that emanates from the toes of His lotus feet. However, impersonalist yogīs, who are devoid of loving devotion, cannot do so even by controlling their senses. Therefore, give up endeavours for jñāna, yoga and so forth, and engage in bhajana of Vāsudeva Kṛṣṇa.

प्रत्याहारे रुद्ध-मति योगेश्वर-गन
कदाच करिते पारे याहा सम्पादन

pratyāhāre ruddha-mati yogeśvara-gana
kadāca karite pāre yāhā sampādana

सेइ कर्माशय ग्रन्थि काटे साधु-गण
याङ्र कृपा-बले, लह ताङ्हार शरण

sei karmāśaya granthi kāṭe sādhu-gaṇa
yāṅra kṛpā-bale, laha tāṅhāra śaraṇa

Commentary: Bhajana-rahasya-vṛtti:

Impersonalists (nirviśeṣa-jñānīs) are not able to control their senses even by performing severely rigid practices, but devotees can very easily control the extremely strong senses by meditating upon the lustre of the lotus-petal-like toes of the most merciful Śrī Bhagavān. In this way they become absorbed in deep meditation. This meditation (dhyāna), and the object of meditation (dhyeya), Śrī Bhagavān, are both eternal. The followers of the theory of monism (advaitavādīs) say: “sādhakānāṃ hitārthāya brahmaṇo rūpaḥ kalpatebrahma is formless, but for the benefit of sādhakas a form has been imagined.” They say that by worshipping imaginary forms of Viṣṇu, Śiva, Durgā, Sūrya and Gaṇeśa, one’s heart is purified and one then attains sāyujya-mukti, merging into brahma. This conception, however, is an ignorant hypothesis that is opposed to the scriptures.

The word vilāsa-bhaktyā in this Text 22 means that the sādhaka contemplates Śrī Kṛṣṇa’s body and meditates on different kinds of services, such as anointing Him with perfume, giving Him an oilmassage and bathing Him. Meditation on the toes of Śrī Kṛṣṇa, who is clever in vraja-rasa, means remembering that His lotus toes have been coloured by kuṅkuma while He was performing intimate pastimes in the bowers of Vṛndāvana with the vraja-devīs. By meditating on this, all the knots of the disease in one’s heart are easily and naturally destroyed. How can the impersonalists, who are covered by ignorance, obtain all these transcendental sentiments? They do not even accept the eternality of Śrī Bhagavān and His transcendental form. Although they consider themselves liberated, in reality they are not.

Śrī Caitanyacaritāmṛta (Madhya-līlā 22.29) confirms this:

ज्ञानी जीवन्-मुक्त-दशा पाइनु करि’ माने
वस्तुतः बुद्धि ‘शुद्ध’ नहे कृष्ण-भक्ति बिने

jñānī jīvan-mukta-daśā pāinu kari’ māne
vastutaḥ buddhi ‘śuddha’ nahe kṛṣṇa-bhakti bine

The endeavours of the offensive nirviśeṣa-jñānīs to control their senses are futile. Externally their activities may look like self-control, but internally there is a flow of dirty, lusty desires likened to the Phalgu River, a river in Gayā that has no f low of water on the river bed but flows underground. Even after thousands of years of severe austerities, Saubhari Ṛṣi was not liberated from material desires. However, by serving Śrī Bhagavān in the association of the pure devotee Mahārāja Māndhātā, he was liberated from material existence very easily. On the strength of bhakti, the devotees are able to cut ignorance at the root. All their senses remain engaged in the Supreme Lord’s service and they make their senses successful by relishing the nectar of the Lord’s beauty. Therefore, give up futile endeavours to subdue the senses and perform bhajana of Śrī Vrajendra-nandana, who is eternal and full of transcendental bliss. This is the only auspicious activity.

 

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