Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura
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THE LORD AND HIS BELOVED
We have surveyed in the last Chapter the seeming conception of worldly people about Rai Ramanana. Now we are to enlighten those who are interested in the esoteric aspect of the devotee. Savants of the spiritual manifestations do not corroborate the view of the ordinary observer of mundane phenomena. Conception is carried both in worldly phenomena as well as in transcendental manifestive aspects. A stricter caution may not be neglected in distinguishing the two different planes so as to rescue the true view from confusion.
Rai Ramananda was far from subscribing to the conception of a pantheist. From what 'he had disclosed about the solution of the manifestive absolute before Sri Krishna-Chaitanya, we come to know that Krishna is the fountainhead of all sounds, all aspects of sight, the creator of spritual and mundane representations, the very center of all sensuous activities and the object of all manifestive phenomena. He is the efficient and material cause of every manifestation and all noumena. Infinite potencies are inherent in Him, and the potencies are set to work by being emanated from the sole fountainhead. He is the essence and flavor of all smelling activity of an enjoyer. He is the relishing and tasteful entity of all active workers who are a part and parcel of the substratum and delegated powers.
The sentient creation is nothing but a wrapper of the transcendental senses inherent in all spiritual atoms known as jivas. They are adaptable as predominated agents of the predominating aspect of Krisbna. Krishna is Himself svayam-rupa; and other representative aspects of the eternal fountainhead are His non-distinctive manifestations to help the atomic spiritual parts of His borderland potency, viz., the jivas.
There are five stages which are known as acme of spontaneous function towards the All-love by His loving agents. So we do not find any ritualistic performance by Ramananda, though there was the seeming feature of ablution in the waters of the Godavari accompanied by his karmi councilors who were busy in trying to induce him to submit to the conventional customs of the fruit-seekers. His conversations with the Supreme Lord disclose the fact of his far-off situation from the conception of the ritualists or the designs of the intellectual pedants prone to suicidal commission. The disclosure of the transcendental manifestation through the lips of an eternal devotee was calculated by the following of Sri Krishna-Chaitanya as the pioneer publication of the transcendental Truth in various aspect. So the messenger should not be misunderstood by scrutinizing merely his outward appearance. A devotee is never recognized by his seeming feature and condition.
The Supreme Lord has taught us by His self-composed verse which runs thus –
naham vipro na ca nara-patir napi vaisyo na sudro
naham varni na ca grha-patir no vana-stho yatir va
kintu prodyan nikhila-paramananda-purnamrtabdher
gopi-bhartuh pada-kamalayor dasa-dasanudasah
"I am not a brahmana, nor a ksatriya, nor a vaishya, nor a sudra; neither am I a brahmacari, a grihasta, nor a vanaprasta or sannyasi, but I am the eternal servant of the servant of the servant of the brilliant, unlimited, most blissful, complete emporium of nectar Who is the maintainer of the gopies."
The Supreme Teacher posed Himself as the audience of the speaker of transcendental Truth as a mere Inquirer. The adamantine mentality could not easily submit to the enlightenment by the eternal observer in his delineation of the eternal fact. An unalloyed observation of the soul should not be contaminated in any way to determine himself as being identical with the over-soul. But an eternal servitor views every manifestation either to be identical with the object of his devotion or traces the eternal relationship with the Same.
The outward meeting of Sri Chaitanya with Ramananda was quite deceptive to the ordinary spectator, specially the dissimilar combination of the two, one being a mendicant and the other showing affinity for worldly affairs. Unless the spectator is familiar with the keen insight to penetrate into the hearts of both of them he is not expected to discern the actual subjectivity and their real goal. If the spectator is educated in the line of the salvationists he would necessarily be confused in ascertaining the compatibility of the two. In his estimation the Mendicant should not show such affinity for a man in power busy with his pompous attempts in securing popularity and must fall as a true religious man. Ramananda was far from the misleading conceptions of an enjoying impersonalist.
The devotees are not properly seen by the non-devotees who have got a wrong education and misconception. A non-devotee often thinks himself quite conversant with all the phases of mundane existence. And this unreliable confidence in himself makes him a pedant and deaf to the inculcation of a devotee's temper. So he cannot participate in the same view with a devotee. The difference between a devotee and the following of the school of impersonalists can be traced by the bifurcate view of the former's particularizing the interest of self with that of the hazy consideration of apparently contending impressions of the latter. The devotee is busy with his person and the Personality of the Absolute. Whereas an impersonalist is found to concentrate his conflicting conceptions to an imaginary unity. His synthetic method in many cases leads him to despair.
Ramananda had one object in view and his object was Krishna and His services in order to please Him. The ordinary eye will consider him to run after different aims to satisfy his senses; but he had only one determination to fulfil. Sri Krishna-Chaitanya and His following could determine his true position as true devotee, meant for his eternal services to Krishna.
"Though Krishna was observed by the wrestlers as the best champion like the thunder, by the people as the king of men, by the ladies as the attracting center of love, by the cowherds as their near Relative, by the wrong-doing chieftains as their chastiser, by the parents as their Only Child, by the Emperor ( Kamsa ) of Bhoja as Destruction Incarnate, by the fools as Infinity, by the Yogins as the Final Object and by the Brishnis as their Guardians, the eternal brothers (Baladev and Krishna) went up to the platform of Kamsa." Though Krishna was observed as Matsya, Kurma, Varaha, Nrisimha, Vamana, Three Ramas, Buddha and Kalki, and Brahma, Vishnu and Maheshvara, and Vasudeva, Samkarshana, Pradyumna and Anirudha, Manvantaravatara, Yugavatara, Aveshavatara, and as the Instructor or Leader, and Brahman and Paramatman by different sights, He was the only object of devotion of Ramananda as consort. When the Absolute is consort, the reciprocal situation of the servitor can easily be asce rtained as serving-maid. When that object is eternally served by the serving maid who has just attained towards Him, her eternal age has no variation in the rolling round of time. The very beauty and color of the eternal server is exactly dove-tailing the purpose of the object and the eternal garments of the pair are no longer shut off before the following of Ramananda.
The eternal Name, Form, Color, Abode, Garments, Mentality, Ingredients of service and everything connected therewith are visible to a true devote who aspires to have a similar situation to follow his or her leader. A hazy sight will determine him in the historicity of heroes, locate him in a particular province, and give him as the holder of a particular situation. But a devotee has little to be taught in these lines to ascertain the absolute whereabouts of Ramananda. A devotee knows Ramananda's grove on the bank of the Spiritual Stream Yamuna and particular helpful Pastimes rendered to Krishna.