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Remembering Mahaprabhu's

His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj
Kolkata—Worldwide, 17 January 2021, part 3


Mahaprabhu's sannyas is described in Sri Chaitanya-bhagavata also. There, it is said that Vakreshwar Pandit, Mukunda, Nityananda Prabhu left Nabadwip together with Mahaprabhu. In Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, it says five people, and in Sri Chaitanya-bhagavata it says three people. Everything is possible. Three or five people knew that Mahaprabhu was going to take sannyas—both is correct.

One time, Sripad Bhakti Ananda Sagar Maharaj (later, Svarupananda Prabhu) was composing something based on Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, and he asked me what was correct—Srila Krishna Das Kaviraj Goswami said five people knew about Mahaprabhu's intention to take sannyas, and Srila Vrindavan Das Thakur said three people. What is the truth? Is it five people or three people? I said both was the truth. We cannot deny either of it. It is not a question, everything is possible.

So, when we were in Bamunpara, Gurudev showed me the place that Mahaprabhu was passing. Sri Chaitanya-bhagavata also described Mahaprabhu's sannyas-lila. After Mahaprabhu took sannyas and left Keshav Bharati's ashram, He thought He went to Vrindavan, so when He came to Bamunpara and saw many cowherd boys, He was very pleased thinking He was close. Even now too you can see in some places many cows grazing and some cowherd men walking with them. So, coming to Bamunpara, Mahaprabhu sat under a banyan tree and called some of the cowherds. (Nityananda Prabhu knew that Mahaprabhu would ask them, so He had spoken to them before that and asked them, "Mahaprabhu will come here, if He asks you whether He was going the right way to Vrindavan, say yes.") As Nityananda Prabhu expected, Mahaprabhu asked the cowherds the same question, "Do you know which way is Vrindavan? Am I going the right way?" As promised, the cowherds replied, "Yes, Prabhu, You are going the right way."

In this way, Mahaprabhu came to Bamunpara, after that to Katwa, and then finally to Shantipur. He had walked for more than two days, almost three days, and He had not eaten anything during this time—He only drank some water, nothing else. When He came to the bank of the Ganges, He thought it was the Yamuna, so He entered the water and, standing in the water in wet clothes, recited the pranam mantra of Yamuna Devi. When He finished, He suddenly saw Advaita Prabhu there. Greatly surprised, He asked him, "Advaita, you? How did you know I was here? How did you know I would come to Vrindavan?" Advaita Prabhu replied, "Prabhu, wherever You are, that is where Vrindavan is." "What? What do you mean wherever I am, that is where Vrindavan is?! Is it not Vrindavan?" Then Mahaprabhu understood, "Oh, Nityananda Prabhu has brought Me here! I wanted to go to Vrindavan, but instead He has brought Me to Shantipur through Kalna! Now I understand!"

Sri Advaita Prabhu knew everything because Nityananda Prabhu had sent some devotees before that to inform Advaita Prabhu that Mahaprabhu was coming to Shantipur, and Sita Devi (Advaita Prabhu's sakti) had prepared all prasadam and everything else to receive Mahaprabhu at their house. Otherwise, how would he know? There were no telephones, no mobile phones at that time. How could it be possible? So, Nityananda Prabhu had sent a message to Shantipur saying, "Somehow or other, I am taking Mahaprabhu to your house." This is how Advaita Prabhu knew about it, and this is how Mahaprabhu reached Shantipur.

Srila Param Guru Maharaj also said that during this time Nabadwip was covered by thick clouds—there was no sun in the sky and everything was very dark. Even the sun too cried because the Lord had left Nabadwip. It was such a sad time, everybody felt very deep separation.

One time, I asked Srila Gurudev what Krishna-katha Keshav Bharati and Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu had talked about the whole night before Mahaprabhu's sannyas, and Gurudev told me many things about that pastime. How does one take sannyas? The scriptures say that one must practise brahmacharya until twenty-five years, then live as a grihastha from twenty-five to fifty years, then as a vanaprastha from fifty to seventy-five years, and only then one can take sannyas and practise sannyas from seventy-five to a hundred years. However, the main conception is that if you cannot control the ten senses (five bodily senses, karmendriya, and five mental senses, jnanendriya), then you cannot take sannyas even if you are a hundred years old. If you cannot control kama, krodha, lobha, moha, mada, matsarya (lust, anger, greed, illusion, madness, envy), ego, etc. then you cannot take sannyas no matter how old you are.

In this way, Mahaprabhu explained so many things, He explained why He wanted to take sannyas, etc. In the end, knowing everything, Keshav Bharati told Mahaprabhu, "You are the Lord Himself, but You are taking sannyas from me—actually, You are giving mercy to me in this way." Not only that, Keshav Bharati had actually first taken the sannyas mantra from Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu—he had asked the Lord to teach him that mantra—and then he gave that same mantra to Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.

The conversation between Keshav Bharati and Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu went on in this way the whole day and night....


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