Adventures in Humility

News, Views, and Chews on spiritual issues.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Sacinandan Leaves Home

One of the most painful episodes of Gaura-lila is the acceptance of sannyasa by Sriman Gaurasundara Mahaprabhu and it's consequence of leaving home as well as leaving devoted kith and kin. You can bet that much has been made over this issue. The father of Sripada Srinivasa Acharya is described as having met Mahaprabhu for the first time at Katwa where the sannyasa-ceremony was taking place. Oh, how he wept as the barber shaved off Mahaprabhu's beautiful locks!

These two padas describe the anguish of the residents of Navadvipa and were copied from KK Bindu #111: They were collected by the Orissan State Museum in Bhubaneswar from palm leaf manuscripts written in Oriya script. In 1992 they published these and some other rare songs of Raya Ramananda in a book titled, 'Raya Ramananda Padyavali.'

Pada One:

nadiAte bhaktagana sakali milila
harinAma dhUnI gorA nadIyA kampAla he

Gathered together with Gauranga, the devotees
performed such uproarious harinama that all of Nadia trembled.

sanyAsake jAba boli bole gauramanI
mAtAra Agare kahe atirasa khAnI

Gauranga, the golden jewel, told His mother the
unbearable news that he was about to take sannyasa.

zuna mAye ogo Ami sannyAsake jAba
kabu mAtA Ami gRhakhAne rakhAiba

"Listen, O mother! I will accept sannyAsa.
How long will you keep me in this house?"

zuni zacI ThAkurAnI kAndiyAM bolite
na jA-a sannyAse gorA AmAre chADite

Hearing this, Sachi Thakurani started to cry
and said, "O Gaura, don’t go. Don’t leave me."

rAye rAmAnanda bole vikala hoila
navIna kuñcita keza gaura muNDAila

muNDAila kezabhAra kapinI daNDa kamaNDala

Raya Ramananda says, “I have become
perturbed! Gaura has shaved off His youthful curly hair.”

Coda: Cutting the burden of his hair, he has accepted
a shaven head, loincloth, staff, and water pot.

Pada Two:

muNDAila kezabhAra navIna ga-urabara
daNDa kamaNDala ka-upine

Youthful Gaura has shaved his head and relieved himself of the
burden of hair. He has accepted a sannyasa danda, kamandalu, and kaupina.

dekhi zacI ThAkurANI paDila tucchA dharanI
kena keza gaura muNDAila

Seeing this, Sachi Thakurani became faint
and said, "Why has Gaura shaved his head?"

kAhAra mukha Ami cAite kemani rahibu grIhate
more sane nia gaurAmanI

"How can I live without seeing his face? How can I
stay in this house? O Gauramani, take me with you!"

tumi jadi sanyAse jAba Amire garala khAba
rAye rAmAnanda rasavAnI

gaurAcAnda tumi thAki more nA kariA duHkhI

Ray Ramananda says with feeling,
"If you accept sannyasa, then I will eat poison."

Coda: O Gaurachandra, stay here! Don’t put me in distress!

The entire story of Gaura's sannyasa-lila is inexpressibly painful to read and hear about.

Although it is relatively well-known that Sri Kesava Bharati was the incarnation of Sandipani Muni in Krishna-lila, I spotted this line in Sri Gaura-ganoddesa-dipika that highlights a different angle on Sri Kesava Bharati's role in Gaura-lila:

iti kecit prabhASante
'krurah kezava-bhAratI

"Some opine that Kesava Bharati
is certainly the incarnation of Akrura."
(SGGD 117)

A nice parallel. Just as Akrura was blamed for stealing Krishna away from Vraja and plunging all the Gopis and other residents in an ocean of sorrow, so also does it seem that Kesava Bharati was responsible for stealing away the young and beautiful Nimai Pandit and thus drenching all of Navadvipa in tears.


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