Brihad Bhagavatamrita (commentary)

by Śrī Śrīmad Bhaktivedānta Nārāyana Gosvāmī Mahārāja | 2005 | 440,179 words | ISBN-13: 9781935428329

The Brihad-bhagavatamrita Verse 1.7.87-88, English translation, including commentary (Dig-darshini-tika): an important Vaishnava text dealing with the importance of devotional service. The Brihad-bhagavatamrita, although an indepent Sanskrit work, covers the essential teachings of the Shrimad Bhagavatam (Bhagavata-purana). This is verse 1.7.87-88 contained in Chapter 7—Purna (pinnacle of excellent devotees)—of Part one (prathama-khanda).

Sanskrit text, Unicode transliteration, Word-for-word and English translation of verse 1.7.87-88:

श्रेष्ठा विदग्धा स्वभिमान-सेवा-चातुर्यतो नन्दयितुं प्रवृत्ता ।
गोपाल-नारी-रति-लम्पटं तं भर्तरम् अत्यन्त-विदग्धताढ्यम् ॥ ८७ ॥
दासीभ्यस् तादृशीम् आज्ञां तस्याकर्ण्य विचक्षणा ।
उत्थाय मार्जयन्त्य् अङ्गं त्वरया तत्र सागता ॥ ८८ ॥

śreṣṭhā vidagdhā svabhimāna-sevā-cāturyato nandayituṃ pravṛttā |
gopāla-nārī-rati-lampaṭaṃ taṃ bhartaram atyanta-vidagdhatāḍhyam || 87 ||
dāsībhyas tādṛśīm ājñāṃ tasyākarṇya vicakṣaṇā |
utthāya mārjayanty aṅgaṃ tvarayā tatra sāgatā || 88 ||

Śrī Satyabhāmā-devī was the most expert of artistic, beautiful women, so she began to please her husband, the crest-jewel of expert, witty persons who ardently desire amorous sports with the gopīs, by cunningly displaying her wrath in the name of service. Nevertheless, when she heard the order of Śrī Kṛṣṇa from the lips of the maidservants, she gave up her earthen bed (bhūmi-sāyyā), cleansed her body, and quickly approached her Lord.

Commentary: Dig-darśinī-ṭīkā with Bhāvānuvāda

(By Śrīla Sanātana Gosvāmī himself including a deep purport of that commentary)

If someone says Śrīmatī Satyabhāmā-devī is the most beloved of Śrī Kṛṣṇa, then why did she behave in such a manner that was contrary to the desire of Śrī Kṛṣṇa? Actually, Śrī Satyabhāmā-devī is the most beloved of Śrī Kṛṣṇa; nevertheless, Śrī Kṛṣṇa who is nāgara-śekhara (topmost enjoyer of damsels) broke the māna of māninī by describing the excellent prema of His beloved devotees. On the contrary, Śrī Satyabhāmā-devī became intent on performing her māna-sevā (sulky service) for securing the happiness of Śrī Kṛṣṇa; therefore, she is addressed as the best of artistic, clever women (vidagdha ramaṇīs). In other words, she attempted to please her husband who is the crest jewel of clever persons (vidagdhaśiromaṇi), through the cunning service of observing passionate wrath by becoming māninī, that is, a woman possessed of jealous wrath. Especially, Satyabhāmā-devī, upon hearing the irate order of her husband to ‘quickly, bring Satyabhāmā here’ from the mouths of her maidservants, gave up her earthen bed (bhūmi-sāyyā) at once and brushing off her limbs, promptly appeared before her husband. The previous verse revealed the purpose of her sulkiness.

How can the Lord be pleased if you say that in breaking the innate māna of women there is a decline in propriety? Therefore, he says that Śrī Kṛṣṇa is extremely clever and being the crest jewel of all cunning persons, becomes pleased in breaking the māna of sulky women. Because Śrī Kṛṣṇa is eager to have amorous pastimes with the gopīs such as Śrī Candrāvalī, that is, the matured fruit of loving dedication is His amorous pastimes, He is a great connoisseur of amorous affairs. In this way, this most cunning person, Śrī Kṛṣṇa, gains immense joy and shrewdness in breaking the māna of these women. Śrī Kṛṣṇa experiences this just to reveal this matter only, as this is the present subject understandably. Moreover, this Śrī Satyabhāmā-devī is also very clever, that is, she is aware of the timing of māna; therefore, as soon as she heard the order of Śrī Kṛṣṇa she gave up lying upon the earth and soon approached her husband while brushing off her body. The previous śloka explained her intent of becoming māninī, one who is capable of employing jealous wrath.

If you remark that how could the Lord be pleased when His pride and honor (maryādā) is diminished by breaking the jealous anger of women, so he says Śrī Kṛṣṇa is full of wonderful cleverness (vidagdhatā). He becomes extremely happy in breaking the māna of sulky women endowed with loving attachment (prema-niṣṭhā), being the crest-jewel of cunning fellows. The reason for this is that Śrī Kṛṣṇa is expertly rasika in the matter of intimate transactions, which is the mature perfection of attachment, the topmost loving determination (parama-prema niṣṭhā) of the cowherd damsels such as Śrī Candrāvalī.

In such a way, Śrī Kṛṣṇa uses His topmost expertise, rather His most expert experiencial happiness to break the māna of women—these topics are noteworthy for further discussion. Śrī Satybhāmādevī is also extremely experienced (vicakṣaṇā). She knows the timing of māna. Therefore, as soon as she heard the order of Śrī Kṛṣṇa, she gave up her earthen bed and approached her husband while wiping off her limbs, brushing the dust off her body due to lying on the ground.

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