TEXT 24
prabhate kukkura cahi' kanha na paila
sakala vaisnavera mane camatkara haila
SYNONYMS
prabhate—in the morning; kukkura—the dog; cahi'-looking for; kanha—anywhere; na paila—not found; sakala vaisnavera—of all the Vaisnavas present; mane—in the minds; camatkara haila—there was great astonishment.
TRANSLATION
In the morning they looked for the dog, but it could not be found anywhere. All the Vaisnavas were astonished.
PURPORT
Sivananda Sena's attachment to the dog was a great boon for that animal. The dog appears to have been a street dog. Since it naturally began to follow Sivananda Sena while he was going to Jagannatha Puri with his party, he accepted it into his party and maintained it the same way he was maintaining the other devotees. It appears that although on one occasion the dog was not allowed aboard a boat, Sivananda did not leave the dog behind but paid more money just to induce the boatman to take the dog across the river. Then when the servant forgot to feed the dog and the dog disappeared, Sivananda, being very anxious, sent ten men to find it. When they could not find it, Sivananda observed a fast. Thus it appears that somehow or other Sivananda had become attached to the dog.
As will be evident from the following verses, the dog got the mercy of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and was immediately promoted to Vaikuntha to become an eternal devotee. Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura has therefore sung, tumi ta' thakura, tomara kukkura, baliya janaha more (Saranagati 19). He thus offers to become the dog of a Vaisnava. There are many other instances in which the pet animal of a Vaisnava was delivered back home to Vaikunthaloka, back to Godhead. Such is the benefit of somehow or other becoming the favorite of a Vaisnava. Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura has also sung, kita-janma ha-u yatha tuya dasa (Saranagati 11). There is no harm in taking birth again and again. Our only desire should be to take birth under the care of a Vaisnava. Fortunately we had the opportunity to be born of a Vaisnava father who took care of us very nicely. He prayed to Srimati Radharani that in the future we would become a servant of the eternal consort of Sri Krsna. Thus somehow or other we are now engaged in that service. We may conclude that even as dogs we must take shelter of a Vaisnava. The benefit will be the same as that which accrues to an advanced devotee under a Vaisnava's care.

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