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Glories of Srila Haridas Thakur (3)

His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj
Disappearance day of Srila Haridas Thakur
Sri Nrisingha Palli, 1 September 2020, part 4
Translated from Bengali


One day, Srila Haridas Thakur told Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, "Prabhu, when You come to stay in Puri, I will stay there with You." Mahaprabhu agreed, and as He was staying in Kashi Misra's house in Puri, He asked Kashi Misra and Sarvabhauma Bhattacharya to arrange some place where Srila Haridas Thakur could make his bhajan kutir. His bhajan kutir was very near Jagannath Mandir, there is also a Siddha Bakul tree in that place. One day, Mahaprabhu secretly took a twig offered to Lord Jagannath as a toothbrush and the Bakul Tree sprang from that twig. It is still there, but the tree had left its body, only the bark is left. So, Srila Haridas Thakur would stay under that Bakul Tree and spend his days doing his service there. He never went to Jagannath Temple, he said, "I am a yavan, and there are many pandas (priests), many high-caste personalities—if I go there, it is crowded and my body can touch their bodies. I will commit an offence."

Chaitanya Mahaprabhu would go to Jagannath Temple every morning for mangal arati—He would take darshan of Lord Jagannath, and after that, every single day, he would come to take darshan of Srila Haridas Thakur. Mahaprabhu would personally come to him. After meeting with Srila Haridas Thakur, Mahaprabhu would go to bathe in the ocean. Such was Mahaprabhu's daily routine.

What prasad did Srila Haridas Thakur take? When Jagannath prasad came from the temple, Mahaprabhu would take it and send His plate with the remnants for Srila Haridas Thakur. Nobody else could take Mahaprabhu's prasadam remnants, only Srila Haridas Thakur would take it—from Mahaprabhu's very plate.

Mahaprabhu had a servitor named Govinda. Govinda was a disciple of Ishwar Puri and, therefore, a godbrother of Mahaprabhu, but following the order of His Guru, Mahaprabhu engaged Govinda in His service. So, one day when Govinda brought prasadam for Srila Haridas Thakur, he saw that Srila Haridas Thakur was chanting the Holy Name softly—he was lying down and chanting on his mala slowly. Govinda said, "Prabhu, I have brought prasadam for you." Srila Haridas Thakur replied, "I am going to break the rule today." (If you read Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, you will find it there.) What rule did he have to break? He said, "Every day I chant three hundred thousand (three lakh) Holy Names, after that I take prasadam, but I have not finished my rounds today." He was chanting very slowly that day, so he did not finish the rounds. He said, "What am I to do? I have not finished my rounds, so how can I take prasadam? On the other hand, this is my Guru's prasad, how can I reject it? What shall I do? I cannot reject Mahaprabhu's prasadam." So, Srila Haridas Thakur took a tiny bit.

Govinda went back and gave the news to Mahaprabhu, "Prabhu, Haridas Thakur's state is not good. He was chanting the Holy Name very slowly, he is not well." Mahaprabhu said, "All right, I will come with you tomorrow." The next morning, the Lord came to Srila Haridas Thakur with a few other devotees like Svarupa Damodar, Ray Ramananda.

"Haridas, what is the news?" asked Mahaprabhu. "What disease have you got?"

We would say, "Oh, my health is not good," "I have stomach ache," "I have a headache," but do you know what Haridas Thakur said?

Haridas Thakur said, "My mind is sick, my body is not sick."

Such is our situation—our mind is always sick, our mind is always pressing us towards maya. Then, Haridas Thakur took Mahaprabhu's hand and made Him sit down saying, "Prabhu, I have spent so many days with You. I have never wanted anything from You in my life, but today I want to ask You for something. I want to beg You for something today." What did he beg for? Haridas Thakur said to Mahaprabhu, "Prabhu, I have seen Your appearance pastime, I have seen Your childhood pastimes, I have seen Your adolescent pastimes, I have seen Your householder pastimes, and I also see Your sannyas pastimes now. However, I am thinking that You will not stay in this world much longer now. The time has come for You to finish Your pastimes. You have shown me Your birth pastimes, but I will not bear to see Your disappearance pastimes. I do not want to see it. I want to leave before You." He said this humbly. "I want to leave before You." Mahaprabhu said in reply, "Haridas, you know why I have come to this world. I have been performing the pastimes of inaugurating the chanting of the Holy Name together with you. All My pastimes were with you—how will I stay without you? Krishna will fulfil your desire, but—" As soon as Haridas Thakur heard "but" he quickly grabbed Mahaprabhu's feet saying, "Please, no buts, Prabhu. If an ant like me dies, what is the loss for this world, what is the loss for You? There are hundreds of thousands of Haridases like me in this world." Then, Mahaprabhu said, "Leave My feet. All right, you are a great Vaishnav, and the Lord always fulfils the desires of His great devotees. So, the Lord will fulfil your desire..." Then, Mahaprabhu left saying that He would come again the next day...


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