Sri Madhavendra Puripad
His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Every year on the second day of the parikrama, on Gaura Dvadasi, we celebrate this day—Sri Madhavendra Puripad's disappearance festival. Actually, Srila Madhavendra Puripad is the root of the bhakti-kalpa-vriksa (the wish-fulfilling tree of devotion). It is told in Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Adi-lila:
জয় শ্রীমাধবপুরী কৃষ্ণপ্রেমপূর ।
jaya sri madhavapuri krsna-prema-pura
Glory to Madhav Puri, the abode of love of Krishna, from whom the divine tree of devotion initially sprouts.
Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Adi-lila, 9.10
He is the ankur, the root of bhakti-kalpataru (wish-fulfilling tree of devotion). Chaitanya Mahaprabhu told also to Nityananda Prabhu about Sri Madhavendra Puri:
প্রভু কহে, "নিত্যানন্দ, করহ বিচার ।
prabhu kahe, "nityananda, karaha vichara
Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Madhya-lila, 4.171
"Nityananda, You can judge for Yourself—there is no one in this world as fortunate as Madhavendra Puri!"
"দুগ্ধদান-ছলে কৃষ্ণ যাঁরে দেখা দিল ।
"dugdha-dana-chhale krsna yanre dekha dila
Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Madhya-lila, 4.172
"He is very fortunate—Krishna Himself came to see him, He brought him milk, and He came to him in a dream three times." Three times—not only once. One time Krishna came with some milk, another time He came to ask him to bring some Malaya sandalwood from Nilachal, and third time He came to him saying it was not necessary to bring the sandalwood to Vrindavan, he could give it to Gopinath instead.
যাঁর প্রেমে বশ হঞা প্রকট হৈলা ।
"yanra preme vasa hana prakata ha-ila
Bound by Madhavendra Puri's love, Krishna manifested Himself (in the Deity form as Gopal) and, by accepting his service, He liberated the whole world.
Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Madhya-lila, 4.173
Krishna took service from him, and, moreover, for him Krishna—the Lord Himself—stole ksir (sweet condensed milk known also as amrita-keli):
যাঁর লাগি' গোপীনাথ ক্ষীর কৈল চুরি ।
"yanra lagi' gopinatha ksira kaila churi
For him, Gopinath stole ksir, condensed milk, earning thus the name 'Ksir-chor' ("Ksir-stealer").
Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Madhya-lila, 4.174
When Madhavendra Puri went to Vrindavan, he went there alone, and he would stay at Govinda Kunda, chanting the Holy Name, and not asking anybody for anything—if somebody gave him anything, he would take it, otherwise he would fast. He was passing his days in this way.
One evening, a boy came to him with some milk and said, "Madhav, I heard all day you have not eaten anything... Some ladies came to bathe and take some water from Govinda Kunda, and they said there was a sannyasi here, and he was not eating anything. So, I have brought you some milk." Madhavendra Puri was surprised, and asked Him many questions, "Who are You? Where do You stay?" and so on, but the boy replied, "First you drink the milk. I will come back later to take the pot." Madhavendra Puri drank the milk and thought, "It is nectar, it is not ordinary milk! I have drunk milk so many times before, but I have never tasted this kind of milk!" He waited and waited for the boy to come back, and when he finally fell asleep he saw a dream: the same boy came to him and said that many years ago Krishna's prapautra (great-grandson) established a Deity of Govardhan-dhari Gopal, and when some Muslim mlechchha people broke the temple, the pujari hid the Deity in the jungle. He told him to find that Deity and take Him out:
বহুদিন তোমার পথ করি নিরীক্ষণ ।
bahu-dina tomara patha kari niriksana
I have been watching you for many days, wondering, "When will Madhav come and serve Me?" Bound by your love, I will appear in this world and accept service—I will liberate the whole world."
Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Madhya-lila, 4.39-40
"I have been waiting for many days for the one who will serve Me—I have been waiting for you, Madhav." You can understand what loving search for the lost servant is...
The next day, Madhavendra Puri took some villagers and, armed with different tools, they went to the jungle—clearing the path, digging the ground, he finally found the Deity of Gopal. Then, he established the Deity in a temple on top of the Govardhan Hill. Some time later, Gopal again came to Madhavendra Puri in a dream and requested his service: "My body is burning because for so many years I have been suffering from cold, hot, and rain in the jungle. Please, bring some sandalwood from Nilachal. Only you can do it."
Following the order, Madhavendra Puri started his journey to Nilachal (Puri). On his way, he stopped in Shantipur, at the house of Advaita Acharya. When Advaita Acharya saw him, he thought, "This is not an ordinary person, it is a great personality!" He washed and massaged Madhavendra Puri's feet... Madhavendra Puri stayed there for a few days, and during that time Advaita Acharya took initiation from him. Madhavendra Puri is actually our line (you know that Ishwar Puri took initiation from Madhavendra Puri, and Mahaprabhu took initiation from Ishwar Puri)—he is the kalpa-vriksa mul, the root of the wish-fulfilling tree of devotion.
After Shantipur, Madhavendra Puri came to Remuna. There, he saw Gopinath and was very happy to see His worship. He asked the pujari, "What bhog do you offer to Gopinath?" The pujari replied that every day he offered twelve pots of amrita-keli (ksir, or condensed milk). Madhavendra Puri wanted to taste it, thinking, "If I get to taste it, then I can cook it for my Gopal Deity in Vrindavan too," but then he thought, "No, it is my tongue that wants to taste it. It is very offensive! It is not good!" Thinking in this way, he left the temple compound and went to the open market. He went there crying so much and chanting.
That night, at midnight, Gopinath said to His pujari in a dream, "I have hidden a pot of ksir under my cloth. My devotee Madhavendra Puri is there, chanting outside the temple compound, take it and give it to him." The pujari went to look for Madhavendra Puri. He went down the street, shouting, "Where is this Madhavendra? Gopinath has stolen ksir for you!" When he came to the market, he saw a sannyasi chanting and crying, and he understood that it must be Madhavendra Puri, "Are you Madhavendra Puri? Gopinath stole a pot of ksir for you!" Madhavendra Puri took the ksir and kept touching it to his forehead—so much ecstasy then came that he became senseless: "Oh, Gopinath is very merciful! He has sent prasadam for me!" He took that prasadam, and then broke the pot, tied it in his cloth and later he would take a piece of clay pot every day... After that, knowing that pratistha would come to him, he did not stay there—he continued his way to Nilachal, Puri...
Madhavendra Puri served Krishna in this way... If you serve devotees, Krishna will come to serve you—so you can understand how powerful Madhavendra Puri is.
It is not written anywhere in Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita whether Mahaprabhu had ever met Madhavendra Puri—Madhavendra Puri was an old man when Mahaprabhu appeared; but Vrindavan Das Thakur wrote in his Sri Chaitanya-bhagavata something about Madhavendra Puri's meeting with Nityananda Prabhu:
মাধবপুরীরে দেখিলেন নিত্যানন্দ ।
madhava-purire dekhilena nityananda
The moment Nityananda saw Madhav Puri, He fell on the ground, senseless in the ecstasy of divine love; and as soon as Sri Madhav Puri saw Nityananda, he fell unconscious, forgetting himself.
Sri Chaitanya-bhagavata, Adi-khanda, 9.158-159
মাধবেন্দ্র-প্রতি নিত্যানন্দ মহাশয় ।
madhavendra-prati nityananda mahasaya
Nityananda Mahasay saw Madhavendra as no one other than His Guru.
Sri Chaitanya-bhagavata, Adi-khanda, 9.188
জানিলুঁ কৃষ্ণের কৃপা আছে মোর প্রতি ।
janilu krsnera krpa ache mora prati
Sri Chaitanya-bhagavata, Adi-khanda, 9.183-184
Madhavendra Puri said to Nityananda Prabhu, "I have got the mercy of Krishna because I have got the association of Nityananda Prabhu! Wherever Nityananda Prabhu goes, that place is vaikuntha-maya (fully transcendental)."
Just before Madhavendra Puri left his body, he would recite this sloka:
অয়ি দীনদয়ার্দ্র নাথ হে
ayi dina-dayardra natha he
"O gentle-hearted Lord, ever-gracious upon the destitute, O Lord of Mathura, when shall I see You again? In Your absence my broken heart trembles. Beloved! what shall I do now?"
Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, Madhya-lila, 4.197
Bhagavan Gaurasundar would always become senseless when reciting this sloka...
Jay Sri Madhavendra Puripad ki jay!
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