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  • Why is self-forgetfulness beautiful?

    — Q: Why is Self-forgetfulness Beautiful?

    — Devotion free from the need to know

    — How Mahaprabhu became a devotee

    — Krishna can't reciprocate to Braja-gopi's love

    — Krishna became a canvasser for Radharani and Braja-gopis

    — Self-forgetfulness is beautiful when it is connected with beautiful Krishna

    — How beautiful is Krishna? Brahma's version

    — Freud: eros rules the world

    — To break Cupid's ties

    — Uniqueness of Srimad Bhagavatam: possibility of the highest loving relationships with the Supreme Personality of Godhead

    — Q: Do eternal Krishna associates have free will?

    — Devotees who can give happiness to Krishna with something fresh

    — How to improve upon the infinite beauty of Krishna?

    Chiang Mai 2017 - Why is self-forgetfulness beautiful?

    Author: Bhakti Sudhir Goswami Cycle: Chiang Mai 2017 Uploaded by: Priyanana Created at: 6 April, 2017
    Duration: 01:09:06 Date: 2017-03-24 Place: Gupta Govardhan Chiang Mai Downloaded: 2450 Played: 3912

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    Devotee: Maharāj, there is a question from Priyanana didi. Why self-forgetfulness is beautiful?
    Goswāmī Mahārāj: The first book that we made for Śrīla Srīdhar Mahārāj was based upon this saying of his, "Reality the Beautiful." And, he...Guru Mahārāj always gives tribute. He is not a plagiarist, if he is re-purposing something from another, he'll mention who that person is. Some of it is like, "everywhere [center], the Infinite is everywhere center, nowhere circumference." Most likely comes from Pascal, but was appreciated by vedāntās than others. But again, Guru Mahārāj is always bringing everything in connection with Kṛṣṇa conception. Just as when Nimāi Paṇḍit returned from Gayā, we know He was up to this point a grammar teacher for the primary students. The nature of aprākṛta-līlā is the Lord's relishing that His position is clandestine, or concealed, not obvious. Who is a cow-herd boy is Kṛṣṇa, in the middle of varṇāśrama, right? Brāhmana, kṣatriya, vaiśya. kṛṣi-go-rakṣya-vāṇijyaṁ vaiśya-karma svabhāva-jam(Bhagavad-gītā: 18.44). Here, He is saying because of His pious activities as a cow-herd in former life, He became a brāhmana in this life. [Laughter]. He did a lot of cow-sevā, go-sevā. And, as a teacher, then you think, ohh, He is the omniscient Supreme Lord, so He must be teaching the most advanced type of instruction to the most advanced students. No, He is teaching the basics of grammar to the primary students. He is concealed in that way. But upon His return, with the initial approval of His own teacher, guru, teacher within Sanskrit language and grammar, Gangadās Paṇḍit, He begins teaching the students that everything indicates Kṛṣṇa.
    That even the, you know, the verbs are His śaktis. When He comes back from Gayā— as we told the other day on Śrīvās Ṭhākur's appearance day, when Śrīvās Ṭhākur saw Him in Navadwīp, he just burst out laughing. And Mahāprabhu said to him, what did He say, chira-jīvī hao. "May you live forever." That's when Śrīvās Ṭhākur said, "when are you going to give up all of this arrogant scholarship and studies?" And if we understand it, Śrīvās Ṭhākur is Nārada, and he is playing a particular role in these pastimes. It's as if he is pressing Him to begin in earnest the nāma-saṅkīrtan movement, as it were. So, on the one [hand], it appears a little bit like chastising, when are you going to give up all of this? But we always, always, the vaiṣṇavās are saying thatjñāne prayāsam udapāsya namanta eva (Śrīmad Bhāgavatam: 10.14.3). Brahma is saying that, when are you going to give up all of this? vidyā-kule ki karibe tāra,Narottam says. When are you going to give it up? Guru Mahārāj said to one Ph.D candidate, scholar type from Switzerland, he said, "Are you ready to admit that knowledge is poison?" And there was a silence. And Guru Mahārāj said, "Huh! Not yet!" [Laughter]. Guru Mahārāj himself, considering he is Ramendra Sundar Bhattācharya, he is a Bhattācharya brāhmin. Knowledgeable to the extreme, qualified to teach, [so much so] that when he came to Gaudiya Maṭh, and Saraswatī Ṭhākur is always hammering, you know, jñāna-śūnya bhakti. In the beginning Guru Mahārāj was like, you know, striking this hard. Jñāna-sūnya bhakti — knowledge-free devotion. Free from the need to know. Curiosity killed the cat. I don't know if it killed Schroedinger's cat, but.... A lack of curiousity. But we are not— curiosity or not curiosity, same result.
    The cowherd men, when they witnessed all these miraculous pastimes of Gopāl, their talk amongst themselves [is] of His either being a [demi]-god, a devata or God Himself. And they are sharing their observations, they come as a group to Nanda Mahārāj. And Nanda Mahārāj is saying, "no, Garga riṣi told He [is] a very pious lad, you know...[in His] previous life, and this life, some Viṣṇu-like [qualities are there]." Very much like Viṣṇu, like, same, same, but different. That's an understatement. He is Kṛṣṇa. So many Viṣṇu expansions He has. After Balarām, the mūla-saṅkarṣaṇa, the chatur-vyūha, the second chatur-vyūha, the puruṣa-avatārs, guṇa-avatārs, līlā-avatārs, yuga-avatārs, manvantara-avatārs, saktyaveśa-avatārs... Like Viṣṇu. He [Nanda Mahārāj] is saying, "and, I must have done something pious to have a son like this, but, I assure you nothing to say here, nothing out of the ordinary. Because, Gopāl, he is so dependent on our love and affection." Because He is bhakta-vatsala. Everything they say is true, meaningful in different ways. And they [are] saying, although He talks so much nonsense, that could be God Himself? As Indra thought, this child is precocious and He with His nonsense-talking has convinced these jñana-śūnya cow-herd men to give up worshipping me and to take all the paraphernalia from my pūja and offer it to Govardhan hill. And he says, like, I forget the word he used....[SANSKRIT WORDS]. Means talkative.
    So...so Guru Mahārāj, he would say that he re-purposed this line from some French thinker, or someone of French descent, "Reality the Beautiful." Ohh, then I was telling how Mahāprabhu, He is telling His students…ohh, Śrīvas Ṭhākur is saying, "so, when are you going to give up all this scholarship, and you know, become a devotee?" So, they are preaching to Him [laughter], trying to convert Him to Kṛṣṇa consciousness. He is already Kṛṣṇa, but Kṛṣṇa consciousness is another thing. It's the property of the devotees. And particularly Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī. And, so Śrivās Ṭhākur is pressing Him, and Mahāprabu is saying, as we understand to this day, He is saying happily that, "well, you are a devotee of Kṛṣṇa. And by your well-wishes, certainly that will happen." Even in the case of Mahāprabhu, the case of Kṛṣṇa [Himself], He is saying, if it is the will of the devotees, then it must happen. As Śrīla Gurudeva told around the time of the installation of the deities in Kaikali, Rādhāramaṇa Sundarjiu, is that the name? Pardon me? Right. Anyway, at that time, he said, the will of the Vaiṣṇava is supreme. Because Kṛṣṇa says in the Gītā: kaunteya pratijānīhi na me bhaktaḥ praṇaśyati(Bhagavad-gītā: 9.31). The observation is made that — Kṛṣṇa is telling Arjuna to declare this.
    Because, you say, well, why not just say it directly Himself? Because He said He wouldn't take up arms in the Kurukṣetra battle—[for] which He found a workaround. He took a chariot wheel from the broken chariot, and was going to kill Bhīṣmadeva with that. Like a giant chakra. And ye yathā māṁ prapadyante tāṁs tathaiva bhajāmy aham (Bhagavad-gītā: 4.11). He also promised in the Bhagavad-gītā, as you surrender to Me, I will reciprocate that. Love and affection towards Kṛṣṇa, and then from Kṛṣṇa love and affection toward the devotee. What a wonderful thing, actually! Inconceivable, that the original Supreme Personality of Godhead, svayam-bhagavān can have a personal loving relationship with someone who...obviously, I mean a relationship is based on both sides loving one another. But that that is possible with Divinity has never been fully, properly conceived and fully expressed as is in Kṛṣṇa conception—śānta, dāsya, sakhya, vātsalya, madhura. All the possibilities, the full spectral range of loving relationship is possible with Kṛṣṇa. But that's Kṛṣṇa's promise. But then we find in the Bhāgavatam, in the na paraye’ham [niravadya-samyujam]śloka(Śrīmad Bhāgavatam:10.32.22),that Krsna is telling the Vraja-gopīs, the sort of love and devotion you have in your hearts, I cannot reciprocate. I promised in the [Bhagavad-gita, but] now I have to break my promise, I can't...It's too great, it's too pure, let virtue be its own reward, I can't reciprocate what is in your heart.
    Even My giving Myself to you is not enough. So, Guru Mahārāj says, Saraswatī Ṭhākur corroborates in the Chaitanya Bhāgavat purport that He becomes their canvasser. To— feeling Himself unable to properly reciprocate the love and devotion of Rādhārāṇī and Vraja-gopīs, He descends in the world as Śrī Chaitanya Mahāprabhu and
    yadi, gaura nā ha'ta tabe ki haita
    kemane dharitām de
    rādhāra mahimā prema-rasa-sīmā
    jagate jānāta ke?
    (Song by Śrīla Vāsudeva Ghoṣ)
    To tell everyone how great they are — Rādhārāṇī and the Vraja-gopīs.
    sureśānāṁ durgaṁ gatir atiśayenopaniṣadāṁ
    munīnāṁ sarva-svaṁ praṇata-paṭalīnāṁ madhurimā
    viniryāsaḥ premṇo nikhila-paśu-pālāmbuja-dṛśāṁ
    sa caitanyaḥ kiṁ me punar api dṛśor yāsyati padam
    (ŚrīChaitanya-Charitāmṛta Ādi-līlā: 4.51)
    The Chaitanyaṣtakam also. sureśānāṁ durgaṁ.Rarely, whether it is the devatās, the upaniṣads, the vedās, even Brahmā and Śiva, we are told, they're hankering for an opportunity, a glimpse. Nārada, Śuka, they are all hankering for a glimpse, a drop of that divine substance and now, Kṛṣṇa Himself, he has descended as Gaurāṅga Mahāprabhu and he has become the canvasser of Rādhārāṇī and the Vraja-gopīs. Rādhāra-mahimā— expressing Her greatness, prema-rasa-sīmā, what is the heights of Kṛṣṇa-prema, particularly mahābhāva, which is the exclusive possession of Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī. And that...Nimāi Paṇḍit came back from Gayā and He is saying, you know, where is Kṛṣṇa? After He took sannyās, kāhāṅ mora prāṇa-nātha muralī-vadanakāhāṅ karoṅ kāhāṅ pāṅ vrajendra-nandana(ŚrīChaitanya-Charitāmṛta: Madhya-līlā: 2.15). He is asking all the people, where is Kṛṣṇa? His heart is being flooded with Kṛṣṇa-prema, that it is looks like the Gaṅga has avatār'ed from His eyes. The avatār of the Gaṅga is coming out His eyes, in tears, moistening all the ground. And He is repeatedly crying, falling to the ground in ecstasy and now all the devotees, Gadādhar Paṇḍit, Śrīvās Ṭhākur, they are all surrounding Him, they're falling to the ground in ecstasy. Sometimes on top of one another.
    And what does it say, who, which goddess...maybe Jāhnavī...[she is] smiling, seeing this beautiful scene that Nimāi Paṇḍit, Gadādhar Paṇḍit, they're all crying incessantly and fainting in ecstasy upon one another. So, Nimāi Paṇḍit, He begins explaining. Now He has returned, He still has his students, but now He is saying everything indicates Kṛṣṇa. Everything. Guru Mahārāj mentions in the — Madhvāchārya, saying the local context of any word, contexts are like reins, a bridle, reins on a horse, that allows you to steer it in a particular direction. Nimāi Paṇḍit is telling His students, if you steer any word in a direction other than Kṛṣṇa, it's illusion. It's deceptive. Everything can be traced back to Kṛṣṇa. Every sort of expression that is possible, we can trace back to Kṛṣṇa conception. And Madhvāchārya [says], if you release, take the bridle and the reins off the horse, then the horse runs according its own necessity. So, [he says], if you remove the local context, of any word, any concept, then it will run in the direction of Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa conception. So, remember Nimāi Paṇḍit, he has descended to introduce Nām-saṅkīrtan. So then, naturally, He will show, everything goes back to Nām—Hari-nām— the Nām of Hari, or Kṛṣṇa. So, Śrīla Guru Mahārāj, he is re-purposing these statements, aphorisms, like, you know, "die to live," "reality is for itself and by itself," "self-determination." These are Hegelian expressions, [but] Guru Mahārāj [is] connecting them all to Kṛṣṇa conception.
    So, when this philosopher uses the phrase, "Reality the Beautiful," Guru Mahārāj liked this very much. He said, because it's like satyam, śivam, sundaram. He says, sat-chit-ānandam, the ultimate expression of truth is in ānandam, joy, happiness, ecstasy. So here, satyam— truth, auspiciousness— śivam,sundaram— beauty. And if you put them together, Sundarānanda, Ānandasundar, Kṛṣṇa is beauty and ecstasy personified. He is happiness, ecstasy, rāsarāj, akhila-rasāmṛta-mūrti. He is the rasāmṛta: rasa-amṛta-mūrti. And He is Reality the beautiful. The ultimate reality is beautiful. brahmeti paramātmeti bhagavān. Brahma— all-accommodating; Paramātma— all-permeating. One, [brahma], everything is within that, the other one, [paramātma], it is within everything. All-accomodating, all-permeating, then what is the hallmark of Bhagavān? All-attractive. Drawing everything to the center. How? Like magnetism. We know, in the world, there's different types of magnetism. What is one that you hear most about, with regard to people and beautiful people. It is charisma, right? It's a type of magnetism, people are drawn to them. So, what to speak of Kṛṣṇa? kandarpa-koṭi-kamanīya-viśeṣa-śobhaṁ (Śrī Brahma-saṁhitā: 5.30), yaṁśyāmasundaram achintya-guṇa-svarūpaṁ(Śrī Brahma-saṁhitā: 5.38). So He is inconceivably beautiful, charming and sweet and everyone is being drawn towards this central conception of the Infinite. So, reality, in its ultimate expression, is beautiful, ecstatic, full of love and joy.
    So, when we speak about [self-forgetfulness], if someone says why is self-forgetfulness [important] — we are assuming this means as applied to Kṛṣṇa conception, beautiful — then the answer is obvious. [It is] because [self-forgetfulness] means forgetful of one's [position], not factoring in one's own [position]. Forgetfulness means not factoring in one's own imposition, or, how do you say, expectation for a particular outcome. So, self-forgetfulness, that's being...the Personality [of Godhead] is so beautiful, charming and sweet and loving and affectionate that that doesn't become a consideration. In consideration of Kṛṣṇa's position as Reality the beautiful, then self-forgetfulness applied in connection with Kṛṣṇa conception must translate into beauty. You understand?
    And so, in the....how beautiful and seductive, seductively charming is Kṛṣṇa, is expressed in the Brahma-saṁhitā: kandarpa-koṭi-kamanīya-viśeṣa-śobhaṁ (Śrī Brahma-saṁhitā: 5.30). Remember, śobha, like śobhana, Kṛṣṇa— śobhana, śobha means beauty. Kandarpa-koṭi-kamanīya. He is saying, like the attractiveness of ten million cupids personified as one. Because this not only tells us something about beauty, but why use cupid? Because we are talking about attraction here, a magnetism, in this meaning. Just like there is gravity in a general sense, holding everything together and drawing everything towards the center. But here, this sort of magnetism, as not beauty in a passive sense, but so compelling that you want to offer yourself to them in service. bhajanīya sarvva-sad-guṇa-viśiṣṭa. Bhagavān proper, means this — that Whose qualities,Who is so qualified, as to compel one, voluntarily to offer themselves, automatically, in response to that beauty. And this simple example of this is, we are seeing in this world, like, you know, like a happy example ....[with people].
    Sometimes adults, they see some very cute child. They don't even [know the child], maybe they never even met them, [but] all of a sudden they encounter some really cute child. And automatically, they want to give themselves to that child. It's an automatic reaction, they want to do something for them, they are willing to offer themselves in service to the child. They find them so charming. So, we see that. And also, older, in terms of men, women. People are enamored, but the example of the child is more safe. So, if we can understand, that how charming someone can be in this world and compelling...the charm is compelling, [so that] one can't remain passive, they feel they must do something. Then what we are told here, well, to go to the non-safe, cupid. Can only be talked about in a general way, that's the greatest power of charm and attraction in this world, beyond just cute. And, as Freud observes, he is saying, ohh, this is actually the driving principle of material existence. And in this regard he is an extremist. He is saying, it's the reason for everything. And if something doesn't appear to be caused by this, or the pursuit of this, [or] its outcome, then it's just this very thing being repressed. That's his position, it's an extreme one.
    So, he will say....[if you say] this artist drew this beautiful picture here, are you saying this [eros] is the driving principle behind that? And he will say, yes. It's repressed erotic tendencies being expressed in this way, but it's all based upon the erotic principle. So, in one sense, we agree with him. As Śrīla Saraswati Ṭhākur … Professor Sanyāl, under his direction, presented [in] this one booklet, that had in it a very interesting title, you know an arresting title, it's called "The erotic principle and unalloyed devotion." So, as you can imagine, that caught a lot of people's attention. What? Erotic principle and unalloyed devotion. [Laughter]. They are saying, maybe I should read this alone. [Laughter]. But then you will see...and actually it deals with this. Saraswati Ṭhākur says that— very beautifully, whether it's him directly or Sanyāl under the influence of his thought, quoting [him] — he says that you cannot eliminate the erotic tendency, the erotic principle, he said, any more than you can eliminate existence itself. It's not like there's a type of existence where this is not a part of it. So, Freud tried to trace that even to the early stages of, you know, children. And I don't want to get into that, it gets kind of gross. [Laughter]. But the principle is there. And the seed of that principle. And as I told, when we hear — I think a little while ago, was that the cicada, making that [noise], and then the tukke (gecko species in Southeast Asia), and so many things here, it's that principle operating, maybe in a very primitive way, instinctual, primitive [way]. But it's there, that even tells you something, how inescapable it is. That it's in every aspect of life. Gurudeva once was saying — and not, how do you say, teasing or anything, he said, the children, they can be taught about reproduction through the Brahma-saṁhitā. The first ślokās there.
    As it is saying...the translators are saying we can't express this in any other words than...ŚambhuŚiva and Māyā, and how the jīvas are impregnated into the womb of [material nature]. This is how this works. So, everywhere you see this principle. Freud, he is not what you would generally conceive of as a theist, but still his [ideas are valid], he was overwhelmed in identifying this, and seeing traces of this in everything. [It is] reminiscent of....what is that śloka…
    nārāyaṇa-mayaṁ dhīrāḥ
     paśyanti paramārthinaḥ
    jagad dhana-mayaṁ lubdhāḥ
     kāmukāḥ kāminī-mayam
    In that śloka it says: according to what your core consciousness is, that is how you see the world. So, a businessman sees everything as a business opportunity. It says, kāmukāḥ kāminī-mayamand someone filled with lust, they see... they are seeing everything is being scrutinized in that way. And then it says, and also, the devotee is seeing everything through devotional eyes.
    santaḥ sadaiva hṛdayeṣu vilokayanti
    yaṁ śyāmasundaram acintya-guṇa-svarūpaṁ
    govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi
    (Śrī Brahma-saṁhitā : 5.38)
    The inconceivable beauty of Kṛṣṇa, they are seeing in everywhere and in everything. So, Saraswati Ṭhākur, he is making the point: this principle, this erotic principle, can it be expressed in unalloyed devotion in that plane? It's something we can't discuss in a cavalier way, or in detail, but the premise of the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, it's contention is, yes. And, we are told, Nārada to Vyāsa, he is saying, "if you...," to underscore the point, he is saying, "if you don't make this clear..." Remember the Bhāgavatam reaches its crescendo in the Tenth Canto, in the pancha…those five chapters of the pastimes of Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa and the Vraja-gopīs. And it cannot be dismissed, it must be noted [that] the nine cantos of pre-requisites [are needed] to reach that point, to not misunderstand what is being expressed there. But nonetheless, that is the point of the Bhāgavatam, [it] is to express this and make it clear that there is possibility for this in the upper world. Or, as Prabhupāda mentions, quoting Viśwanāth Chakravarthi Ṭhākur, for a śloka of the Bhāgavatam, janmādy asya yataḥ (Śrīmad Bhāgavatam: 1.1.1) etc. The ādi being a reference to ādi-rasa, madhura-rasa, mukya- rasa. He is saying māyāvādīs, by [definitition] — and this is a very interesting point, he is quoting Viśwanath [Chakravarthi Thakur] saying this— he said māyāvādīs, because they deny the personality of Godhead, they're inadvertently, indirectly, giving, how do you say, impetus for mundane sexuality. You understand? Because they deny the personality of Godhead, so that means this relationship isn't possible in anywhere but here. And like the Grand Inquisitor told Jesus in Dostoevsky, where he said, "and besides you and a few of your saint friends, who can control their senses...come on..." You and a few saints, but you know, the regular people, they can't do that.
    Like someone's father, of one Chinese girl, we were talking about Buddhism, and he said, "but my daughter is not Buddha!" And I said, "maybe she is a little Buddha..." She has a got a little Buddha [in her]. Some Buddha-like qualities. So, this possibility, this prospect muktir hitvānyathā-rūpaṁ svarūpeṇa vyavasthitiḥ (Śrīmad Bhāgavatam: 2.10.6). It's really thrilling and exciting and astonishing, and unbelievable, what........if we understand what's being inferred. But it can only be addressed in an inference sort of way, meant to....I told Nṛsiṁganath, Nṛsiṁga Chaitanya Prabhu found that śloka in the Eleventh Canto, basically saying that subtlety, to infer, is a more favoured way of expressing higher truth. Because of its...well, in this case, we'll say, of its likelihood of being misunderstood, misread. So, in the Bhaktisiddhānta Achārya, Sanātana Goswāmī Prabhu—Āchārya of sambandha-jñāna. Sometimes, it can be expressed in different ways, you know, sambandha [mean]— relationship. But sometimes Prabhupāda would just say, it means knowing what is what. Knowing what is what. And who is who, who is whom. So, his deity, the deity of sambandha-jñāna [is] Madan Mohan. And must be. We are saying, ohh, well, we heard the story, that's some favourite with him [Sanātana Goswāmī] and Rupa Goswāmī's Govinda....and Raghunāth Dās's Giridhāri, but prayojana[tattva’s deity is] Gopināth..But it's not arbitrary. So, necessarily, Madan Mohan must come first. And Guru Mahārāj explained why. Back to this principle, the cupid principle. That, if eros is the driving principle of material existence, then that's what is also keeping everyone bound in material existence. That attraction, just like an orbit. Can't...what do they call it, when you leave the orbit, you know the gravitational pull of the earth...it has a name, I forgot. But anyway, you understand the idea, there's a certain point, within a certain range you are hopeless. You are just, like, you must remain within that orbit. But only at a certain point can you leave that and say, come within the magnetic, gravitational pull of another. So, he is saying, here, Madan has that sort of the gravitation pull of the mundane erotic principle upon everyone and everything in material existence.
    So, Kṛṣṇa, as Madan Mohan, the one who has the....how beautiful is Kṛṣṇa, [he is so beautiful] that cupid is bewildered. Sometimes they show cupid with a bow and arrow and kind of like happily inflicting, you know, lust upon others. Like, they're hit by an arrow of cupid and then they're totally bewildered. But here, cupid is seeing someone who is so beautiful that cupid is bewildered and charmed. Right? Why so? As Brahma-Saṁhitā expresses, kandarpa, that's another name of cupid, kandarpa-koṭi-kamanīya-viśeṣa-śobhaṁ (Śrī Brahma-saṁhitā : 5.30). Kṛṣṇa has the attraction...He is so beautiful [that He] has the magnetic, seductive attraction of ten million cupids personified as one. And for those who have experienced one cupid, we should think, "Oh my God!" [Laughter]. That's just inconceivable. One, ten, a hundred, no. Ten million cupids could appear as one. And why [is he] giving ten million? Because our mind...we can't hardly accommodate that, what to speak of beyond that. It's talking about some sort of infinite beauty and charm, seductive, attracting. That is Who is Kṛṣṇa. The very name Kṛṣṇa indicates that. Kṛṣ-ṇa. Kṛṣ— everything being drawn to the center, and ṇa— He is nourishing everyone. Because He is rāsa-rāj, He is ecstasy personified.
    So, Madan Mohan necessarily must be the first deity. Why? Because Madan Mohan is capable of breaking the stranglehold that cupid has on the heart of the conditioned souls. Must necessarily be Madan Mohan. Because that needs to be broken, and that's Nārada to Vyāsa really. He is alluding to this sort of possibility, prospect, you have to clearly express it. Other things have been expressed, general spiritual principles, how to live a spiritual life, engage in spiritual practices, to come out of the mundane and make progress toward the spiritual, but really, the average person, in the name of spiritual culture, they're going to engage in practices that more or less keep them bound here. That do not break the stranglehold. And that's why he told, "it must be you, Vyāsa, because if anyone were to challenge them, they would say, well, we are following the advice of Veda-Vyāsa. Are you a greater authority than Veda-Vyāsa? No, I don't think so." So Nārada is saying, "So, it has to come from you, because you gave everything else, so you have to give this in your magnum opus, your masterpiece purāṇa, super-purāṇa, Śrīmad Bhāgavatam." There, because....we'll say, well, there was Mahābhārata and Kṛṣṇa [is] there…but in a different capacity. Not as gopī-jana-vallabha.
    And I say that specifically, because that is mentioned there, but only in, how do you say, practically encrypted in the statement of Draupadī, upon her disrobing, where, we are told, as they are trying to disrobe her, she is trying to, with her own ability, strength, save her modesty. Then, she starts crying out to the Lord, [but] with one [arm still covering herself]. And she is crying, then we are told, at last, she gives up on her side, what she can do to save her own honour and she, with both arms raised in the air, completely at the mercy of Kṛṣṇa, she vibrates [His name]. He! He! Gopī-jana-vallabha! And it's when she mentions that, gopī-jana-vallabha, that means the lovers of the gopīs, means that Kṛṣṇa. Then, Kṛṣṇa starts supplying infinite sari, infinite cloth to her sari. And it's mentioned somewhere else [in the Mahābhārata], for the sake of līlā and pastimes, and purāṇic legend, that when she, as a girl—[when] Kṛṣṇa cut Himself once, and she immediately tore her sari and made a band-aid for Kṛṣṇa from her sari. So, she tore a little bit off and fixed Kṛṣṇa, then, what is that? We give something to Kṛṣṇa from the heart, Kṛṣṇa, He only knows infinite reciprocation. He is the infinite, a drop of the infinite is infinite, what to speak of a whole lot of infinite? [Laughter]. So, when she says...and that's....everything with Kṛṣṇa is like that, the cliff-hanger, ohh, he is pressing, whatever the first level of resistance, defence strategy is, more drama from Kṛṣṇa, to press the devotee to go deeper and deeper until they reach the deepest region of their heart, where, what is expressed there? Self-forgetfulness, not just self-sacrifice, self-forgetfulness to the extreme, where they give up all ego and conception of self in favour of Kṛṣṇa. And then, Kṛṣṇa gives everything to them.
    So, Madan Mohan has that capacity to break the stranglehold that cupid has upon the heart.
    bhidyate hṛdaya-granthiś
     chidyante sarva-saṁśayāḥ
    kṣīyante cāsya karmāṇi
     mayi dṛṣṭe ’khilātmani
    (Śrīmad Bhāgavatam:11.20.30)
    Then, the devotee is saying, actually, Kṛṣṇa, You...are the object of my heart, what I am searching for. I have been thinking, it's some person, place, thing of this world, [but] I see You are that.
    śrutvā guṇān bhuvana-sundara śṛṇvatāṁ te
     nirviśya karṇa-vivarair harato ’ṅga-tāpam
    rūpaṁ dṛśāṁ dṛśimatām akhilārtha-lābhaṁ
     tvayy acyutāviśati cittam apatrapaṁ me
    (Śrīmad Bhāgavatam: 10.52.37)
    Rukmiṇī, she is saying, now I have heard about You, śrutvā guṇān, and Your qualities, śrutvā guṇānbhuvana-sundar. I understand You are the most beautiful thing in the world, beyond the beauty of anything here…mentioned in the Bhāgavatam and elsewhere, bhūṣaṇa-bhūṣaṇāṅgam(Śrīmad Bhāgavatam: 3.2.12). He is the ornament's ornament. Sometimes we see that principle here, regularly, like, when they want to sell something to someone, particularly clothes, jewellery etc. what do they do, they put that on a beautiful model. They don't put it on an ugly person, not that there's anyone who is ugly, but just for speaking. They don't go like, here's an ugly person, we put this on them, and now they are [beautiful]. No, they put it on the most beautiful person they can find, and then they go, look! And then people are saying, so then if I put that, I'll also be like that, very nice, amazing, how transformative it can be. But here, we're told, Kṛṣṇa....what's the origin of that? Back to Nimāi Paṇḍit saying, every word, every concept, you can go back to Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is the original bhūṣaṇa-bhūṣaṇ[āṅgam.bhūṣaṇa means ornament, bhūṣaṇāṅgam — He's the ornament's ornament. Whatever you put on Kṛṣṇa looks beautiful. Same thing from Mahāprabhu, Nimāi Paṇḍit.
    As we told, when He is playing with the dirty pots, remember He is golden, He is Gaurāṅga, Gaura-Hari. When He's playing with those dirty pots...we've seen'em in India, you know in Purī they still do that, cook in the pot. The pot you get the prasādam in is the pot it was cooked in. They don't cook in one pot and transfer it to another pot. That pot it's cooked in, you see the black soot on it, that's the pot. So, He's got that black soot all over Him. But He's Gaura-Hari, Gaurāṅga, Mahāprabhu. So, what is Vṛndāvan dās Ṭhākur [saying]? When Sachi looks at Him, she sees....indranīlā —means the blue sapphire. An indranīla gem, means like the king of sapphires is the indranīla, the blue sapphire. So, that's what he looks like when He is dirty. From the blackness [of the soot], when they add that to His Gaura-Hari, Gaurāṅga complexion, He looks like a shining blue sapphire. That's what she [sees]. And who is that? Nīlamaṇi, Kṛṣṇa. So, it is a little difficult for her to chastise Him, but she does have vātsalya-bhāva, so she's the doing the best she can, which is the best ever done, so she can chastise him still. But in the presence of so much beauty, it's overwhelming.
    So bhūṣaṇa-bhūṣaṇāṅgam. bhuvana-sundara śṛṇvatāṁ te(Śrīmad Bhāgavatam: 10.52.37).And she [Rukmiṇī] is saying, and now I realize why there's such a thing as hearing, and why we have the ears. Not that...an option is hearing about Kṛṣṇa, she is saying, now I understand the idea behind all of this. Hearing, seeing...We have evolutionary biologists saying, no, see, the reason the ears are on the side, and the predators are coming....please....How can you say that with a straight face? You know, really, hopefully our prospects are higher than that. Set your sights higher. Bhuvana-sundara, the most beautiful thing in the world...she is saying, hearing about you I understand why there is such a thing as hearing. It's a very dramatic, emphatic statement. nirviśya karṇa-vivarair harato ’ṅga-tāpam. And the end result of this, harata, all the suffering, which really is on account of forgetfulness of Kṛṣṇa. Instant[ly], that's gone. Now I am in touch with You, beautiful and pleasing. rūpaṁ dṛśāṁ dṛśimatām akhilārtha-lābhaṁ. And from the sound Brahma, comes the rūpa-Brahma, the form [of] Kṛṣṇa, comes out of the sound of Kṛṣṇa. That's why one of the offenses is to not believe that, or not conceive that properly. Out of the sound comes the form of Kṛṣṇa. And she is saying, now I feel like I have got everything, Yaṁ labdhvā cāparaṁ lābhaṁ manyate nādhikaṁ tataḥ(Bhagavad-gītā: 6.22). And, I understand, why we can see, what is seeing is meant for, what seeing is all about. To hear the most beautiful thing, to see the most beautiful, to serve the most beautiful— bhajanīya sarvva-sad-guṇa-viśiṣṭa.
    tvayy achyutāviśati cittam apatrapaṁ me. (Śrīmad Bhāgavatam: 10.52.37).Achyutā, Kṛṣṇa. She is saying, and now, inextricably surrounded by my karmic circumstance, as it appears I am, I am inviting you to kidnap me. So, normally, when there is a kidnapping, the ransom note is sent from kidnappers. But here, Rukmiṇī is [the] opposite. She is writing the kidnapping note. [Laughter]. So we can't have any stereotype about what to expect in Kṛṣṇa conception.
    Yes? Sure.
    Devotee: Just a second, Mahārāj. Well, in [the] Supreme Abode, the main characters of the pārṣadas of Kṛṣṇa-līlās...do they have freedom of will, or everything is happening there by the divine will of Kṛṣṇa?
    GoswāmīMahārāj: I['d] just respond [with] what comes to my mind. Once a beloved disciple of Śrīla Swāmi Mahārāj was on a walk with him in Central Park, and he said to Prabhupāda…he is a very simple-hearted devotee...he says to Prabhupāda, you know Prabhupāda is walking along, and he says, "Does Mother Yaśodā really enjoy her pastimes with Kṛṣṇa?" He said this, like, very sincerely and earnestly. "Does Mother Yaśodā really enjoy her pastimes with Kṛṣṇa?" [Laughter]. And Prabhupāda just looked at him like, in disbelief, but almost you know, to say, like, I think what was unsaid bears repeating. [Laughter]. If I can say that, and apparently, I just did. What was unsaid bears repeating. And that is, how to properly conceive of that world. So, Guru Mahārāj put it this way, I think once, nicely, when he said [the following]. People are always talking about whether or not the jīvas have free will. And, but Guru Mahārāj said...because Kṛṣṇa is omniscient and He knows everything, like what's going to happen and all...But Guru Mahārāj said, does Kṛṣṇa have free will, then? Or is he, like, ohh, I already knew it...I could, ohh, yeah....You know, He would be paralyzed. [Laughter]. That would be horrible, if that's what having [omniscience], being omniscient entailed, that you just know everything that's going to happen.
    But I think we find hints in the pastimes of Mahāprabhu, where, when He is travelling, we know at first like a 100,000 people [are] following him, they're crying, they're digging up the ground where the tears of Mahāprabhu fall, they're following him. He's trying to go toward Vṛndāvan, and then, a devotee who is part of the ministry of the king, or the local nawāb, he knows that Mahāprabhu conceivably could run into some problem with government agents. So, he meets with him and [he is] saying like, it might be good to take your...and go, because I anticipate some obstacles. And there is this one line in there, but it is very interesting, where Mahāprabhu is telling him, He is saying, I will give some inspiration into the heart. As I said, it's a nawāb, some governor, like that. But he won't interfere with his free will, He said, I'm going to give some inspiration to him. And I am paraphrasing now, but He says basically, and if he doesn't accept it, I have a B plan.
    You understand? And I thought, this is really insightful. He is saying in advance, I'm going to give some inspiration to him, but it'll be up to him, whether he accepts that or not. Should he not accept it, then I'll go in another way. And if we want our minds to explode, you know, we can go, well, doesn't He know [whether the nawāb will accept or not]? Then, [like] Guru Mahārāj was just talking about, then that would be to eliminate the free will of Kṛṣṇa, if He knows everything. If that's what being omniscient means. But I think the beauty here, is that, Who is omniscient and omnipotent, and every other omni-, this is astonishing, He is extending to us free will. You can choose to go this way or that way, to give your heart, or to withhold your heart. To participate in these pastimes as a contributing agent. Like we see the devotees, as they evolve, and enter the nitya-siddha plane, they're capable of expressing something new, that will actually give joy to Kṛṣṇa and His devotees. Like, I think of Guru Mahārāj and Gurudeva particularly, but, saying original things. As Guru Mahārāj told me, "I say [things that weren't said]. My godbrothers will say, you say things that weren't said by the predecessor āchāryas." And you go, what? And he said, [they said], "but we accept them, because it's in line with what they say."
    And sometimes I give this example: I just mentioned, kandarpa-koṭi-kamanīya-viśeṣa-śobhaṁ (Śrī Brahma-saṁhitā : 5.30). That's Brahma, Brahma-saṁhitā, about the beauty, seductive charm, sweetness of Kṛṣṇa. And then he said, erotic potential is alluded to there. It's Brahma-saṁhitā. Brahma. Guru Maharaj, in the Prema-dhāma-deva Stotram, he is....and I...now, on to Mahāprabhu, if Rupa Goswami, saying about the beauty of Mahāprabu...because we are thinking, how can you improve on Reality the Beautiful? But in Charitāmṛtam, we hear, Kṛṣṇa, we are told, He is ecstatic, He is beautiful, there is no room for more. And he is saying, yet, it increases. And increases with loving exchange with His devotees. That's how. He is saying, there is no room for increase, but in loving exchange with Rādhārāṇī, Vṛaja-gopīs, Nanda, Yaśoda etc. it's increasing. Increasingly loving, affectionate, beautiful etc.
    So, when we are thinking about Kṛṣṇa, so many things come to mind. But then ...Rādhārāṇī, as we told the other day, Kṛṣṇa is saying, all right, everyone's mad for Me, my fragrance is what...when you smell beautiful flowers and wonderful things, it's aroma therapy and it's changing your consciousness. He is saying, that's like, you know, a peripheral representation of My fragrance, if you can trace that to the centre. So He is saying, everyone's mad by Me, but He is saying, but who could inspire Me? In the way that I am inspiring everyone. He said, someone who is more qualified than Me. These are His own words. And He is saying, and we don't find anyone who is more qualified than Me than Rādhārāṇī. She is more qualified...And then He gives the same [descriptions], as people appreciate Him, His aroma, the sound of His flute, He is saying, He is appreciating Her aroma, the sound of Her voice, Her touch, all the different senses. He is saying, [they] drive Me mad. Kṛṣṇa...that is a shocking revelation from the central conception of the infinite, in praise of Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī. So, then that's astonishing.
    But then, if we say, what if you combine them? It's almost...that's too much. You mean, you could combine Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa as One, that's too much to conceive. That is Mahāprabhu. The real followers of Rādhārāṇī and Krṣṇa are devotees of Mahāprabhu. He is Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa combined. That's inconceivable. So, then, the beauty of Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa combined, what would that be like? So, Rūpa Goswāmī is saying:
    rasoddāmā kāmārbuda-madhura-dhāmojjvala-tanur
    yatīnām uttaṁsas taraṇikara-vidyoti-vasanaḥ
    hiraṇyāṇāṁ lakṣmī-bharam abhibhavann āṅgika-rucā
    sa chaitanyaḥ kiṁ me punar api dṛśor yāsyati padam
    (Stavamala Vol.1: Prathama ŚrīŚrī Chaitanyaṣtakam: Verse 4 )
    He is saying, rasoddāmā kāmārbuda—kama-arbuda. Here is ten million cupids again. And I am saying, re-purposing the word cupidity, in the sense [of] meaning like cupidness. Because it has another meaning actually. But I want to use that, give it [this meaning], re-purpose. So ten million cupids in full-blown cupidity, madhura-dhāmojjvala-tanur, that's the sort of sweetness and beauty [that is present] in the tanu, the radiant tanu of Śrī Chaitanyadev. And goes on from there. So, this is original from Rūpa Goswāmī. Rūpa Goswāmī is giving this. Guru Mahārāj...why did Bābājī Mahārāj say he liked so Guru Mahārāj's songs, ślokās etc? He said, we find there, he is saying, equal to Rūpa Goswāmī, like that. And he is the Rūpānuga dhara. We can say that, Guru Mahārāj won't say that, but Gurudev will say that. So, what is Guru Mahārāj saying?
    prema-dhāma-devam eva naumi gaura-sundaram
    prema-dhāma-devam eva naumi gaura-sundaram
    (ŚrīŚrī Prema-dhāma-deva stotram byŚrila Śridhara Dev-Goswāmī Mahārāj: verse 2)
    I'm talking about fragrance, all these things, but he is saying here, how beautiful is Mahāprabhu? As Rūpa Goswāmī told, ten million cupids, that sort of radiant sweetness, [ten million cupids] in full-blown cupidity. Guru Mahārāj is saying, ten million cupids will faint to see the beauty of Mahāprabhu. That's another way of expressing it. And it's original. So, what did [the god-brothers] say, "you say things that were not said by the predecessor āchāryas, but we accept them, because it is in line with what they expressed." And what is the point [I am making], this is totally, completely, original, from the heart of Śrīla Guru Mahārāj. Such devotees are qualified to participate fully in these pastimes and contribute something new and fresh, as inconceivable as it may be. And it gives delight to Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa, and Their......to hear this. It will make them all....who are...there is no room for expansion, They'll be even more happy and beautiful, hearing such things.
    Hare Kṛṣṇa.