Chapter 5
The Activities of Sākṣi-gopāla
Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura gives the following summary of the Fifth Chapter in his Amṛta-pravāha-bhāṣya: After passing through Yājapura, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu reached the town of Kaṭaka (Cuttak) and there went to see the temple of Sākṣi-gopāla. While there, He heard the story of Sākṣi-gopāla from the mouth of Śrī Nityānanda Prabhu.
Once there were two brāhmaṇas, one elderly and the other young, who were inhabitants of a place known as Vidyānagara. After touring many places of pilgrimage, the two brāhmaṇas finally reached Vṛndāvana. The elderly brāhmaṇa was very satisfied with the service of the young brāhmaṇa, and he wanted to offer him his youngest daughter in marriage. The young brāhmaṇa received the promise of his elder before the Gopāla Deity of Vṛndāvana. Thus the Gopāla Deity acted as a witness. When both brāhmaṇas returned to Vidyānagara, the younger brāhmaṇa raised the question of this marriage, but the elderly brāhmaṇa, due to obligations to his friends and wife, answered that he could not remember his promise. Because of this, the younger brāhmaṇa returned to Vṛndāvana and narrated the whole story to Gopālajī. Thus Gopālajī, being obliged by the young man's devotional service, accompanied him to southern India. Gopālajī followed the younger brāhmaṇa, who could hear the tinkling sound of Gopālajī's ankle bells. When all the respectable gentlemen of Vidyānagara were assembled, Gopālajī testified to the promise of the elderly brāhmaṇa. Thus the marriage was performed. Later, the King of that country constructed a fine temple for Gopāla.
Afterwards, King Puruṣottama of Orissa was insulted by the King of Kaṭaka, who refused to give him his daughter in marriage and called him a sweeper of Lord Jagannātha. With the help of Lord Jagannātha, King Puruṣottama fought the King of Kaṭaka and defeated him. Thus he took charge of both the King's daughter and the state of Kaṭaka as well. At that time, Gopālajī, being very much obligated by the devotional service of King Puruṣottama, was brought to the town of Kaṭaka.
After hearing this narration, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu visited the temple of Gopāla in great ecstasy of love of God. From Kaṭaka He went to Bhuvaneśvara and saw the temple of Lord Śiva. In this way, He gradually arrived at Kamalapura, and on the banks of the Bhārgī River He came to the temple of Lord Śiva, where He entrusted His sannyāsa staff to Nityānanda Prabhu. However, Nityānanda Prabhu broke the staff into three pieces and threw it into the Bhārgī River at a place known as Āṭhāranālā. Being angry at not getting His staff back, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu left the company of Nityānanda Prabhu and went alone to see the Jagannātha temple.
padbhyāṁ calan yaḥ pratimā-svarūpo
brahmaṇya-devo hi śatāha-gamyam
deśaṁ yayau vipra-kṛte 'dbhutehaṁ
taṁ sākṣi-gopālam ahaṁ nato 'smi
padbhyām—by the two legs; calan—walking; yaḥ—one who; pratimā—of the Deity; svarūpaḥ—in the form; brahmaṇya-devaḥ—the Supreme Lord of brahminical culture; hi—certainly; śata-āha—in one hundred days; gamyam—to be passed over; deśam—the country; yayau—went; vipra-kṛte—for the benefit of a brāhmaṇa; adbhuta—most wonderful; īham—activity; tam—unto that; sākṣi-gopālam—the Gopāla known as the witness Gopāla; aham—I; nataḥ asmi—offer respectful obeisances.
I offer my respectful obeisances unto the Supreme Personality of God [brahmaṇya-deva], who appeared as Sākṣi-gopāla to benefit a brāhmaṇa. For one hundred days He traveled through the country, walking on His own legs. Thus His activities are wonderful.
jaya jaya śrī-caitanya jaya nityānanda
jayādvaitacandra jaya gaura-bhakta-vṛnda
jaya—all glories; jaya—all glories; śrī-caitanya—to Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu; jaya—all glories; nityānanda—to Lord Śrī Nityānanda Prabhu; jaya—all glories; advaita-candra—to Advaita Ācārya; jaya—all glories; gaura-bhakta-vṛnda—to the devotees of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu.
All glories to Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu! All glories to Lord Nityānanda Prabhu! All glories to Śrī Advaita Prabhu! And all glories to the devotees of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu!
calite calite āilā yājapura-grāma
varāha-ṭhākura dekhi' karilā praṇāma
calite calite—walking on and on; āilā—reached; yājapura-grāma—the village of Yājapura-grāma; varāha-ṭhākura—the temple of Varāhadeva; dekhi'-seeing; karilā—offered; praṇāma—obeisances.
Walking and walking, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu and His party finally arrived at Yājapura on the river Vaitaraṇī. There He saw the temple of Varāhadeva and offered His obeisances unto Him.
nṛtya-gīta kaila preme bahuta stavana
yājapure se rātri karilā yāpana
nṛtya-gīta—dancing and chanting; kaila—executed; preme—in love of Godhead; bahuta—various; stavana—prayers; yājapure—in the village of Yājapura; se rātri—that night; karilā—did; yāpana—passing.
In the temple of Varāhadeva, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu engaged in chanting and dancing and offered prayers. He passed that night in the temple.
kaṭake āilā sākṣi-gopāla dekhite
gopāla-saundarya dekhi' hailā ānandite
kaṭake—in the town of Kaṭaka (Cuttak); āilā—arrived; sākṣi-gopāla—the witness Gopāla; dekhite—to see; gopāla—of the Deity of Gopāla; saundarya—the beauty; dekhi'-seeing; hailā—became; ānandite—very pleased.
Afterwards, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu went to the town of Kaṭaka to see the temple of the witness Gopāla. When He saw the Deity of Gopāla, He was very much pleased with His beauty.
premāveśe nṛtya-gīta kaila kata-kṣaṇa
āviṣṭa hañā kaila gopāla stavana
prema-āveśe—in the ecstasy of love of God; nṛtya-gīta—dancing and chanting; kaila—performed; kata-kṣaṇa—for some time; āviṣṭa hañā—being overwhelmed; kaila—offered; gopāla stavana—prayers to Gopāla.
While there, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu engaged in chanting and dancing for some time, and being overwhelmed, He offered many prayers to Gopāla.
sei rātri tāhāṅ rahi' bhakta-gaṇa-saṅge
gopālera pūrva-kathā śune bahu raṅge
sei rātri—that night; tāhāṅ—there; rahi'-remaining; bhakta-gaṇa-saṅge—with the other devotees; gopālera—of Lord Gopāla; pūrva-kathā—previous narration; śune—hears; bahu—much; raṅge—in pleasure.
That night Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu stayed in the temple of Gopāla, and along with all the devotees, He heard the narration of the witness Gopāla with great pleasure.
nityānanda-gosāñi yabe tīrtha bhramilā
sākṣi-gopāla dekhibāre kaṭaka āilā
nityānanda-gosāñi—Lord Nityānanda Prabhu; yabe—when; tīrtha bhramilā—traveled to the places of pilgrimage; sākṣi-gopāla—the witness Gopāla; dekhibāre—to see; kaṭaka—to the town of Kaṭaka; āilā—came.
Previously, when Nityānanda Prabhu had toured all over India to see different places of pilgrimage, He also had come to see Sākṣi-gopāla at Kaṭaka.
sākṣi-gopālera kathā śuni, loka-mukhe
sei kathā kahena, prabhu śune mahā-sukhe
sākṣi-gopālera—of the witness Gopāla; kathā—the narration; śuni—hearing; loka-mukhe—from the people; sei kathā—that narration; kahenaNityānanda Prabhu narrates; prabhu—Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu; śune—hears; mahā-sukhe—in great pleasure.
At that time, Nityānanda Prabhu had heard the story of Sākṣi-gopāla from the townspeople. He now recited this again, and Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu heard the narration with great pleasure.
The Sākṣi-gopāla temple is situated between the Khurdā Road junction railway station and the Jagannātha Purī station. The Deity is not presently situated in Kaṭaka, but when Nityānanda Prabhu traveled there, the Deity was present. Kaṭaka is a town in Orissa situated on the Mahānadī River. When Sākṣi-gopāla was brought from Vidyānagara in southern India, He stayed for some time at Kaṭaka. Thereafter, He was situated for some time in the Jagannātha temple. It seems that in the temple of Jagannātha there was some disagreement between Jagannātha and Sākṣi-gopāla, a disagreement called prema-kalaha, a quarrel of love. In order to settle this love quarrel, the King of Orissa constructed a village about six miles from Jagannātha Purī. The village was called Satyavādī, and Gopāla was stationed there. Thereafter, a new temple was constructed. Now there is a Sākṣi-gopāla station, and people go there to see the witness Gopāla.
pūrve vidyānagarera dui ta' brāhmaṇa
tīrtha karibāre duṅhe karilā gamana
pūrve—previously; vidyānagarera—of the town known as Vidyānagara; dui—two; ta'-certainly; brāhmaṇabrāhmaṇas; tīrtha karibāre—to tour places of pilgrimage; duṅhe—both of them; karilā—began; gamana—journey.
Formerly at Vidyānagara in South India there were two brāhmaṇas who made a long tour to see different places of pilgrimage.
gayā, vārāṇasī, prayāga--sakala kariyā
mathurāte āilā duṅhe ānandita hañā
gayā—the pilgrimage site of the name Gayā; vārāṇasī—Benares, or Kāśī; prayāga—Allahabad; sakala—all; kariyā—touring; mathurāteMathurā; āilā—they reached; duṅhe—both; ānandita—pleased; hañā—becoming.
First of all they visited Gayā, then Kāśī, then Prayāga. Finally, with great pleasure, they came to Mathurā.
vana-yātrāya vana dekhi' dekhe govardhana
dvādaśa-vana dekhi' śeṣe gelā vṛndāvana
vana-yātrāya—in touring the different forests; vana dekhi'-while seeing the forests; dekhe—they see; govardhanaGovardhana Hill; dvādaśa-vana dekhi'-visiting the twelve forests in Vṛndāvana; śeṣe—at last; gelā—reached; vṛndāvanaVṛndāvana.
After reaching Mathurā, they started visiting the different forests of Vṛndāvana and came to Govardhana Hill. They visited all twelve forests [vanas] and at last came to the town of Vṛndāvana.
The five forests situated on the eastern side of the river Yamunā are Bhadra, Bilva, Loha, Bhāṇḍīra and Mahāvana. The seven forests situated on the western side of the Yamunā are Madhu, Tāla, Kumuda, Bahulā, Kāmya, Khadira and Vṛndāvana. After visiting all these forests, these pilgrims went to a place known as Pañcakrośī Vṛndāvana. Out of the twelve forests, the Vṛndāvana forest extends from the town of Vṛndāvana up to Nanda-grāma and Varṣāṇa, a distance of thirty-two miles, within which the Pañcakrośī Vṛndāvana town is situated.
vṛndāvane govinda-sthāne mahā-devālaya
se mandire gopālera mahā-sevā haya
vṛndāvane—within Pañcakrośī Vṛndāvana; govinda-sthāne—at the place where the present Govinda temple is situated; mahā-deva-ālaya—a great temple; se mandire—in that temple; gopālera—of the Deity of Gopāla; mahā-sevā—gorgeous worship; haya—there is.
In the village of Pañcakrośī Vṛndāvana, at the site where the Govinda temple is now situated, there was a great temple where gorgeous worship of Gopāla was performed.
keśī-tīrtha, kālīya-hradādike kaila snāna
śrī-gopāla dekhi' tāhāṅ karilā viśrāma
keśī-tīrtha—the bathing place on the bank of the Yamunā known as Keśī-ghāṭa; kālīya-hrada—the bathing place on the bank of the Yamunā known as Kāliya-ghāṭa; ādike—in such different bathing places; kaila—did; snāna—bathing; śrī-gopāla dekhi'-by visiting the temple of Gopāla; tāhāṅ—there; karilā—took; viśrāma—rest.
After taking baths at different bathing places along the river Yamunā, such as Keśī-ghāṭa and Kāliya-ghāṭa, the pilgrims visited the temple of Gopāla. Afterwards, they took rest in that temple.
gopāla-saundarya duṅhāra mana nila hari'
sukha pāñā rahe tāhāṅ dina dui-cāri
gopāla-saundarya—the beauty of the Gopāla Deity; duṅhāra—of both of them; mana—the minds; nila—took away; hari'-carrying; sukha pāñā—feeling this transcendental happiness; rahe—remained; tāhāṅ—in that temple; dina—days; dui-cāri—two or four.
The beauty of the Gopāla Deity stole away their minds, and feeling great happiness, they remained there for two or four days.
dui-vipra-madhye eka vipra--vṛddha-prāya
āra vipra--yuvā, tāṅra karena sahāya
dui-vipra-madhye—between the two brāhmaṇas; eka vipra—one brāhmaṇa; vrddha-prāya—elderly man; āra vipra—the second brāhmaṇa; yuvā—young man; tāṅra—of the older brāhmaṇa; karena—does; sahāya—assistance.
One of the two brāhmaṇas was an old man, and the other was young. The young man was assisting the old one.
choṭa-vipra kare sadā tāṅhāra sevana
tāṅhāra sevāya viprera tuṣṭa haila mana
choṭa-vipra—the younger brāhmaṇa; kare—does; sadā—always; tāṅhāra—his (the old brāhmaṇa's); sevana—service; tāṅhāra—his; sevāya—by the service; viprera—of the old brāhmaṇa; tuṣṭa—pacified; haila—became; mana—the mind.
Indeed, the young brāhmaṇa always rendered service to the older one, and the old man, being very satisfied with his service, was pleased with him.
vipra bale--tumi mora bahu sevā kailā
sahāya hañā more tīrtha karāilā
vipra bale—the elderly brāhmaṇa says; tumi—you; mora—my; bahu—various; sevā—service; kailā—have rendered; sahāya—assistant; hañā—being; more—to me; tīrtha—pilgrimage; karāilā—helped to do.
The older man told the younger, "You have rendered various types of service to me. You have assisted me in traveling to all these places of pilgrimage.
putreo pitāra aiche nā kare sevana
tomāra prasāde āmi nā pāilāma śrama
putreo—even my own son; pitāra—of the father; aiche—in this way; —not; kare—renders; sevana—service; tomāra—your; prasāde—by the mercy; āmi—I; —not; pāilāma—have gotten; śrama—fatigue.
"Even my own son does not render such service. By your mercy, I did not become fatigued while on this tour.
kṛta-ghnatā haya tomāya nā kaile sammāna
ataeva tomāya āmi diba kanyā-dāna
kṛta-ghnatā—ungratefulness; haya—it is; tomāya—to you; —not; kaile—if doing; sammāna—respect; ataeva—therefore; tomāya—to you; āmi—I; diba—shall give; kanyā-dāna—my daughter as charity.
"If I do not show you any respect, I will be ungrateful. Therefore, I promise to give you my daughter in charity."
choṭa-vipra kahe, "śuna, vipra-mahāśaya
asambhava kaha kene, yei nāhi haya
choṭa-vipra—the younger brāhmaṇa; kahe—replies; śuna—hear; vipra-mahāśaya—my dear brāhmaṇa; asambhava—unlikely; kaha—you say; kene—why; yei—which; nāhi—not; haya—happens.
The younger brāhmaṇa replied, "My dear sir, please hear me. You are saying something very unusual. Such a thing never happens.
mahā-kulīna tumi--vidyā-dhanādi-pravīṇa
āmi akulīna, āra dhana-vidyā-hīna
mahā-kulīna—highly aristocratic; tumi—you; vidyā—education; dhana-ādi—riches; pravīṇa—enriched; āmi—I; akulīna—not aristocratic; āra—and; dhana-vidyā-hīna—without any wealth and education.
"You are a most aristocratic family man, well educated and very rich. I am not at all aristocratic, and I am without a decent education and have no wealth.
Due to pious activities, one can be enriched by four opulences: one may obtain birth in an aristocratic family, become highly educated, become very beautiful or get a sufficient quantity of riches. These are symptoms of pious activities performed in one's past life. In India it is still current for an aristocratic family never to consider a marriage with a common family. Though the caste may be the same, to maintain the aristocracy such marriages are rejected. No poor man will dare marry the daughter of a rich man. Because of this, when the elderly brāhmaṇa offered the young brāhmaṇa his daughter, the young brāhmaṇa did not believe that it would be possible to marry her. Therefore he asked the elderly brāhmaṇa why he was proposing something unprecedented (asambhava). It was unheard of for an aristocratic person to offer his daughter to a person who was both uneducated and poor.
kanyā-dāna-pātra āmi nā ha-i tomāra
kṛṣṇa-prītye kari tomāra sevā-vyavahāra
kanyā-dāna-pātra—a bridegroom suitable for one's daughter; āmi—I; —not; ha-i—am; tomāra—of you; kṛṣṇa-prītye—only for satisfaction of Kṛṣṇa; kari—I do; tomāra—of you; sevā—of service; vyavahāra—activities.
"Sir, I am not a suitable bridegroom for your daughter. I render service to you only for the satisfaction of Kṛṣṇa.
Both brāhmaṇas were pure Vaiṣṇavas. The younger man took special care of the older one simply to please Kṛṣṇa. In Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (11.19.21) Kṛṣṇa says, mad-bhakta-pūjābhyadhikā: "It is better to render service to My devotee." Thus, according to the Gauḍīya-Vaiṣṇava philosophy of Caitanya Mahāprabhu, it is better to be a servant of the servant of God. One should not try to serve Kṛṣṇa directly. A pure Vaiṣṇava serves a servant of Kṛṣṇa and identifies himself as a servant of a servant of Kṛṣṇa. This is pleasing to Lord Kṛṣṇa. Śrīla Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura confirms this philosophy: chāḍiyā vaiṣṇava-sevā nistāra pāyeche kebā. Unless one serves a liberated Vaiṣṇava, he cannot attain liberation by directly serving Kṛṣṇa. He must serve the servant of Kṛṣṇa.
brāhmaṇa-sevāya kṛṣṇera prīti baḍa haya
tāṅhāra santoṣe bhakti-sampad bāḍaya"
brāhmaṇa-sevāya—by rendering service to a brāhmaṇa; kṛṣṇera—of Lord Kṛṣṇa; prīti—the satisfaction; baḍa—very great; haya—is; tāṅhāra santoṣe—by pleasing the Lord; bhakti—of devotional service; sampad—the opulence; bāḍaya—increases.
"Lord Kṛṣṇa is very pleased by service rendered to brāhmaṇas, and when the Lord is pleased, the opulence of one's devotional service increases."
In this regard, Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura comments that the younger brāhmaṇa rendered service to the older one with the purpose of pleasing Kṛṣṇa. It was not a matter of ordinary worldly dealings. Kṛṣṇa is pleased when a Vaiṣṇava is rendered service. Because the younger brāhmaṇa served the older one, Lord Gopāla agreed to become a witness of the marriage negotiation in order to maintain the prestige of both devotees. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu would certainly not have liked to hear about marital dealings unless such dealings were exchanged between two Vaiṣṇavas. Marriage arrangements and ceremonies belong to ordinary material karma-kāṇḍa sections of the scriptures. The Vaiṣṇavas, however, are not interested in any kind of karma-kāṇḍa dealings. Śrīla Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura says: karma-kāṇḍa jñāna-kāṇḍa kevala viṣera bhāṇḍa. For a Vaiṣṇava, the karma-kāṇḍa and jñāna-kāṇḍa sections of the Vedas are unnecessary. Indeed, a real Vaiṣṇava takes these sections as a poison pot (viṣera bhāṇḍa). Sometimes we take part in a marriage ceremony for our disciples, but this does not mean that we are interested in karma-kāṇḍa activities. Sometimes, not knowing the Vaiṣṇava philosophy, an outsider criticizes such activity, maintaining that a sannyāsī should not take part in a marriage ceremony between a young boy and a young girl. However, this is not a karma-kāṇḍa activity, because our purpose is to spread the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. We are giving all facility to the general populace to take to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, and in order to fix the devotees in concentration on the service of the Lord, marriage is sometimes allowed. We have experienced that such married couples actually render very important service to the mission. Therefore, one should not misunderstand when a sannyāsī takes part in a marriage ceremony. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu and Nityānanda Prabhu took great pleasure in hearing about the marriage ceremony between the young brāhmaṇa and the daughter of the elderly brāhmaṇa.
baḍa-vipra kahe,--"tumi nā kara saṁśaya
tomāke kanyā diba āmi, karila niścaya"
baḍa-vipra—the older brāhmaṇa; kahe—replies; tumi—you; —not; kara—do; saṁśaya—doubt; tomāke—to you; kanyā—the daughter; diba—shall give; āmi—I; karila—made; niścaya—certainty.
The older brāhmaṇa replied, "My dear boy, do not doubt me. I will give you my daughter in charity. I have already decided this."
choṭa-vipra bale,--"tomāra strī-putra saba
bahu jñāti-goṣṭhī tomāra bahuta bāndhava
choṭa-vipra—the young brāhmaṇa; bale—says; tomāra—your; strī-putra—wife and sons; saba—all; bahu—many; jñāti—of family relations; goṣṭhī—group; tomāra—your; bahuta—many; bāndhava—friends.
The young brāhmaṇa said, "You have a wife and sons, and you have a large circle of relatives and friends.
tā'-sabāra sammati vinā nahe kanyā-dāna
rukmiṇīra pitā bhīṣmaka tāhāte pramāṇa
tā'-sabāra—of all of them; sammati—consent; vinā—without; nahe—not; kanyā-dāna—giving the daughter in charity; rukmiṇīra—of Queen Rukmiṇī; pitā—father; bhīṣmaka—of the name Bhīṣmaka; tāhāte—of that; pramāṇa—evidence.
"Without the consent of all your friends and relatives, it is not possible to give me your daughter in charity. Just consider the story of Queen Rukmiṇī and her father, Bhīṣmaka.
bhīṣmakera icchā,--kṛṣṇe kanyā samarpite
putrera virodhe kanyā nārila arpite"
bhīṣmakera—of King Bhīṣmaka; icchā—the desire; kṛṣṇe—unto Kṛṣṇa; kanyā—daughter; samarpite—to give; putrera—of his son; virodhe—by the objection; kanyā—daughter; nārila—was unable; arpite—to offer.
"King Bhīṣmaka wanted to give his daughter, Rukmiṇī, in charity to Kṛṣṇa, but Rukmī, his eldest son, objected. Therefore he could not carry out his decision."
As stated in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (10.52.25):
bandhūnām icchatāṁ dātuṁ
kṛṣṇāya bhaginīṁ nṛpa
tato nivārya kṛṣṇa-dviḍ
rukmī caidyam amanyata
King Bhīṣmaka of Vidarbha wanted to offer Kṛṣṇa his daughter, Rukmiṇī, but Rukmī, the eldest of his five sons, objected. Therefore he withdrew his decision and decided to offer Rukmiṇī to the King of Cedi, Śiśupāla, who was a cousin of Kṛṣṇa's. However, Rukmiṇī conceived of a trick: she sent a letter to Kṛṣṇa asking Him to kidnap her. Thus in order to please Rukmiṇī, who was His great devotee, Kṛṣṇa kidnapped her. There ensued a great fight between Kṛṣṇa and the opposing party, headed by Rukmiṇī's brother Rukmī. Rukmī was defeated and, because of his harsh words against Kṛṣṇa, was about to be killed, but he was saved at the request of Rukmiṇī. However, Kṛṣṇa shaved off all of Rukmī's hair with His sword. Śrī Balarāma did not like this, and so to please Rukmiṇī, Balarāma rebuked Kṛṣṇa.
baḍa-vipra kahe,--"kanyā mora nija-dhana
nija-dhana dite niṣedhibe kon jana
baḍa-vipra kahe—the elderly brāhmaṇa says; kanyā—the daughter; mora—my; nija-dhana—own property; nija-dhana—one's own property; dite—to give; niṣedhibe—will object; kon—what; jana—person.
The elderly brāhmaṇa said, "My daughter is my own property. If I choose to give my property to someone, who has the power to stop me?
tomāke kanyā diba, sabāke kari' tiraskāra
saṁśaya nā kara tumi, karaha svīkāra"
tomāke—to you; kanyā—the daughter; diba—I shall offer; sabāke—all others; kari'-doing; tiraskāra—neglecting; saṁśaya—doubt; —not; kara—do; tumi—you; karaha—just do; svīkāra—acceptance.
"My dear boy, I will give my daughter to you in charity, and I will neglect the position of all others. Don't doubt me in this regard; just accept my proposal."
choṭa-vipra kahe,--"yadi kanyā dite mana
gopālera āge kaha e satya-vacana"
choṭa-vipra kahe—the younger brāhmaṇa replies; yadi—if; kanyā—daughter; dite—to give in charity; mana—the mind; gopālera—of the Gopāla Deity; āge—in front; kaha—say; e—these; satya-vacana—words in truth.
The younger brāhmaṇa replied, "If you have decided to give your young daughter to me, then say so before the Gopāla Deity."
gopālera āge vipra kahite lāgila
'tumi jāna, nija-kanyā ihāre āmi dila'
gopālera āge—in front of the Gopāla Deity; vipra—the elderly brāhmaṇa; kahite—to speak; lāgila—began; tumi jāna—my Lord, please know; nila-kanyā—my own daughter; ihāre—to this boy; āmi—I; dila—have given in charity.
Coming before Gopāla, the elderly brāhmaṇa said, "My dear Lord, please witness that I have given my daughter to this boy."
In India it is still the custom for a daughter to be offered to someone simply by word. This is called vāg-datta. This means that the father, brother or guardian of a girl has given his word that she will be married to a certain man. Consequently, that daughter cannot be married to anyone else. She is reserved by virtue of the honest words of the father or guardian. There are many instances in which the parents of a female child have given someone a verbal promise that their daughter will be married to his son. Both parties agree to wait until the boy and girl are grown up, and then the marriage takes place. Following this custom, which is very old in India, the elderly brāhmaṇa promised to give his daughter to the younger brāhmaṇa in charity, and he promised this before the Gopāla Deity. In India the custom is to honor any promise made before the Deity. Such a promise cannot be canceled. In Indian villages, whenever there is a quarrel between two parties, they go to a temple to settle the quarrel. Whatever is spoken in front of the Deity is taken to be true, for no one would dare lie before the Deity. This same principle was followed in the Battle of Kurukṣetra. Therefore in the very beginning of the Bhagavad-gītā it is stated: dharma-kṣetre kuru-kṣetre.
By not becoming God conscious, human society is deteriorating to the lowest standard of animal life. This Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement is very essential to reviving God consciousness among the general populace. If people actually become God conscious, all quarrels can be settled outside of court, as happened in the case of the two brāhmaṇas whose disagreement was settled by the witness Gopāla.
choṭa-vipra bale,--"ṭhākura, tumi mora sākṣī
tomā sākṣī bolāimu, yadi anyathā dekhi"
choṭa-vipra bale—the younger brāhmaṇa replied; ṭhākura—my dear Lord Gopāla; tumi—You; mora—my; sākṣī—witness; tomā—unto You; sākṣī—witness; bolāimu—I shall call as; yadi—if; anyathā—otherwise; dekhi—I see.
Then the younger brāhmaṇa addressed the Deity, saying, "My dear Lord, You are my witness. I shall call for You to testify if it is necessary later on."
eta bali' dui-jane calilā deśere
guru-buddhye choṭa-vipra bahu sevā kare
eta bali'-speaking this; dui-jane—both the brāhmaṇas; calilā—went; deśere—toward their own country; guru-buddhye—accepting the elderly brāhmaṇa as guru; choṭa-vipra—the young brāhmaṇa; bahu—various; sevā—services; kare—renders.
After these talks, the two brāhmaṇas started for home. As usual, the young brāhmaṇa accompanied the elderly brāhmaṇa as if the older brāhmaṇa were a guru [spiritual master] and rendered him service in various ways.
deśe āsi' dui-jane gelā nija-ghare
kata dine baḍa-vipra cintita antare
deśe āsi'-after returning to their own country; dui-jane—both of them; gelā—went; nija-ghare—to their respective homes; kata dine—after some time; baḍa-vipra—the elderly brāhmaṇa; cintita—very anxious; antare—within.
After returning to Vidyānagara, each brāhmaṇa went to his respective home. After some time, the elderly brāhmaṇa became very anxious.
tīrthe vipre vākya diluṅ,--kemate satya haya
strī, putra, jñāti, bandhu jānibe niścaya
tīrthe—on pilgrimage; vipre—to a brāhmaṇa; vākya—word of honor; diluṅ—I have given; kemate—how; satya—true; haya—it is; strī—wife; putra—sons; jñāti—relatives; bandhu—friends; jānibe—will know; niścaya—certainly.
He began to think, "I have given my word to a brāhmaṇa in a holy place, and what I promised will certainly come to pass. I must now disclose this to my wife, sons, other relatives and friends."
eka-dina nija-loka ekatra karila
tā-sabāra āge saba vṛttānta kahila
eka-dina—one day; nija-loka—all his relatives; ekatra—in one place; karila—assembled; -sabāra—of all of them; āge—in front; saba—all; vṛttānta—narration; kahila—spoke.
Thus one day the elderly brāhmaṇa called for a meeting of all his relatives and friends, and before them all he narrated what had taken place in front of Gopāla.
śuni' saba goṣṭhī tāra kare hāhā-kāra
'aiche bāt mukhe tumi nā ānibe āra
śuni'-hearing; saba—all; goṣṭhī—family members and friends; tāra—of the elderly brāhmaṇa; kare—do; -hā-kāra—exclamation of disappointment; aiche—such; bāt—proposal; mukhe—in the mouth; tumi—you; —not; ānibe—should bring; āra—again.
When those who belonged to the family circle heard the narration of the old brāhmaṇa, they made exclamations showing their disappointment. They all requested that he not make such a proposal again.
nīce kanyā dile kula yāibeka nāśa
śuniñā sakala loka karibe upahāsa'
nīce—to a lower family; kanyā—daughter; dile—if offering; kula—family tradition; yāibeka—will go to; nāśa—destruction; śuniñā—hearing; sakala—all; loka—friends; karibe—will do; upahāsa—joking.
They unanimously agreed, "If you offer your daughter to a degraded family, your aristocracy will be lost. When people hear of this, they will make jokes and laugh at you."
vipra bale,--"tīrtha-vākya kemane kari āna
ye ha-uk, se ha-uka, āmi diba kanyā-dāna"
vipra bale—the brāhmaṇa says; tīrtha-vākya—the promise made on the pilgrimage; kemane—how; kari—I shall do; āna—otherwise; ye ha-uk—whatever may be; se ha-uka—let it take place; āmi—I; diba—shall give; kanyā-dāna—my daughter in charity.
The elderly brāhmaṇa said, "How can I undo the promise I made in a holy place while on pilgrimage? Whatever may happen, I must give him my daughter in charity."
jñāti loka kahe,--'morā tomāke chāḍiba'
strī-putra kahe,--'viṣa khāiyā mariba'
jñāti loka—the relatives; kahe—answer; morā—we all; tomāke—you; chāḍiba—will give up; strī—wife; putra—sons; kahe—say; viṣa—poison; khāiyā—drinking; mariba—we shall die.
The relatives unanimously said, "If you give your daughter to that boy, we shall give up all connection with you." Indeed, his wife and sons declared, "If such a thing happens, we shall take poison and die."
vipra bale,--"sākṣī bolāñā karibeka nyāya
jiti' kanyā labe, mora vyartha dharma haya"
vipra bale—the brāhmaṇa says; sākṣī—a witness; bolāñā—calling for; karibeka—there will be; nyāya—justice; jiti'-winning; kanyā—the daughter; labe—he will take; mora—my; vyartha—meaningless; dharma—religious principles; haya—will be.
The elderly brāhmaṇa said, "If I do not give my daughter to the young brāhmaṇa, he will call Śrī Gopālajī as a witness. Thus he will take my daughter by force, and in that case my religious principles will become meaningless."
putra bale,--"pratimā sākṣī, seha dūra deśe
ke tomāra sākṣī dibe, cintā kara kise
putra bale—his son says; pratimā—the Deity; sākṣī—witness; seha—He also; dūra—distant; deśe—in country; ke—who; tomāra—of you; sākṣī—witness; dibe—will give; cintā—anxiety; kara—you do; kise—why.
His son replied, "The Deity may be a witness, but He is in a distant country. How can He come to bear witness against you? Why are you so anxious over this?
nāhi kahi--nā kahio e mithyā-vacana
sabe kahibe--'mora kichu nāhika smaraṇa'
nāhi kahi—I did not say; kahio—do not say; e—this; mithyā-vacana—false statement; sabe—only; kahibe—you shall say; mora—my; kichu—anything; nāhika—not; smaraṇa—remembrance.
"You do not have to flatly deny that you spoke such a thing. There is no need to make a false statement. Simply say that you do not remember what you said.
tumi yadi kaha,--'āmi kichui nā jāni'
tabe āmi nyāya kari' brāhmaṇere jini"
tumi—you; yadi—if; kaha—say; āmi kichui jāni—I do not remember anything; tabe—in that case; āmi—I; nyāya kari'-arguing; brāhmaṇere—the younger brāhmaṇa; jini—shall conquer.
"If you simply say, 'I do not remember,' I shall take care of the rest. By argument, I shall defeat the young brāhmaṇa."
The son of the elderly brāhmaṇa was an atheist and a follower of the Raghunātha-smṛti. He was very expert in dealing with pounds-shillings-pence, but he was fool number one. Consequently, he did not believe in the spiritual position of the Deity, nor did he have any faith in the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Therefore, as a typical idol worshiper, he considered the form of the Lord to be made of stone or wood. Thus he assured his father that the witness was only a stone Deity and was not capable of speaking. Besides that, he assured his father that the Deity was situated far away and consequently could not come to bear witness. In essence, he was saying: "Have no anxiety. You do not have to lie directly, but you should speak like a diplomat, like King Yudhiṣṭhira when he spoke to Droṇācārya-aśvatthāmā hata iti gajaḥ. Following this principle, simply say that you do not remember anything and are completely unaware of the statements given by the young brāhmaṇa. If you make the background like that, I shall know how to fill in the argument and defeat him by word jugglery. Thus I shall save you from having to give your daughter to him. In this way, our aristocracy will be saved. You have nothing to worry about."
eta śuni' viprera cintita haila mana
ekānta-bhāve cinte vipra gopāla-caraṇa
eta śuni'-hearing this; viprera—of the old brāhmaṇa; cintita—agitated; haila—became; mana—the mind; ekānta-bhāve—with single-minded attention; cinte—thinks; vipra—the brāhmaṇa; gopāla-caraṇa—of the lotus feet of Śrī Gopālajī.
When the elderly brāhmaṇa heard this, his mind became very agitated. Feeling helpless, he simply turned his attention to the lotus feet of Gopāla.
'mora dharma rakṣā pāya, nā mare nija-jana
dui rakṣā kara, gopāla, lainu śaraṇa'
mora—my; dharma—religious principles; rakṣā pāya—spared; —not; mare—die; nija-jana—own kinsmen; dui—two; rakṣā kara—You kindly protect; gopāla—my Lord Gopāla; lainu—I have taken; śaraṇa—shelter under Your lotus feet.
The elderly brāhmaṇa prayed, "My dear Lord Gopāla, I have taken shelter of Your lotus feet, and therefore I request You to please protect my religious principles from disturbance and at the same time save my kinsmen from dying."
ei-mata vipra citte cintite lāgila
āra dina laghu-vipra tāṅra ghare āila
ei-mata—in this way; vipra—the elderly brāhmaṇa; citte—within the mind; cintite—to think; lāgila—began; āra dina—the next day; laghu-vipra—the young brāhmaṇa; tāṅra—his; ghare—to the home; āila—came.
The next day, the elderly brāhmaṇa was thinking deeply about this matter when the young brāhmaṇa came to his house.
āsiñā parama-bhaktye namaskāra kari'
vinaya kariñā kahe kara dui yuḍi'
āsiñā—coming; parama-bhaktye—in great devotion; namaskāra kari'-offering obeisances; vinaya kariñā—with great humility; kahe—says; kara—hands; dui—two; yuḍi'-folding.
The young brāhmaṇa came to him and offered respectful obeisances. Then, very humbly folding his hands, he spoke as follows.
'tumi more kanyā dite karyācha aṅgīkāra
ebe kichu nāhi kaha, ki tomāra vicāra'
tumi—you; more—to me; kanyā—your daughter; dite—to give in charity; karyācha—have made; aṅgīkāra—a promise; ebe—now; kichu—something; nāhi—not; kaha—you say; ki—what; tomāra—your; vicāra—conclusion.
"You have promised to give your daughter in charity to me. Now you do not say anything. What is your conclusion?"
eta śuni' sei vipra rahe mauna dhari'
tāṅra putra mārite āila hāte ṭheṅgā kari'
eta śuni'-hearing this; sei vipra—the elderly brāhmaṇa; rahe—remains; mauna dhari'-holding silence; tāṅra—his; putra—son; mārite—to strike; āila—came out; hāte—in hand; ṭheṅgā—stick; kari'-taking.
After the young brāhmaṇa submitted this statement, the elderly brāhmaṇa remained silent. Taking this opportunity, his son immediately came out with a stick to strike the younger man.
'āre adhama! mora bhagnī cāha vivāhite
vāmana hañā cāṅda yena cāha ta' dharite'
āre adhama—O most degraded one; mora—my; bhagnī—sister; cāha—you want; vivāhite—to marry; vāmana—a dwarf; hañā—being; cāṅda—the moon; yena—as if; cāha—you want; ta'-certainly; dharite—to capture.
The son said, "Oh, you are most degraded! You want to marry my sister, just like a dwarf who wants to catch the moon!"
ṭheñā dekhi' sei vipra palāñā gela
āra dina grāmera loka ekatra karila
ṭheñā dekhi'-seeing the stick in his hand; sei vipra—the young brāhmaṇa; palāñā gela—fled from that place; āra dina—the next day; grāmera loka—the inhabitants of the village; ekatra karila—gathered in one place.
Seeing a stick in the hand of the son, the younger brāhmaṇa fled. The next day, however, he gathered together all the people of the village.
saba loka baḍa-vipre ḍākiyā ānila
tabe sei laghu-vipra kahite lāgila
saba loka—all the village inhabitants; baḍa-vipre—to the senior brāhmaṇa; ḍākiyā—calling; ānila—brought; tabe—then; sei laghu-vipra—the junior brāhmaṇa; kahite lāgila—began to speak.
All the people of the village then called for the elderly brāhmaṇa and brought him to their meeting place. The young brāhmaṇa then began to speak before them as follows.
'iṅha more kanyā dite karyāche aṅgīkāra
ebe ye nā dena, pucha iṅhāra vyavahāra'
iṅha—this gentleman; more—to me; kanyā—his daughter; dite—to give in charity; karyāche—has made; aṅgīkāra—promise; ebe—now; ye—indeed; —not; dena—he gives; pucha—kindly ask; iṅhāra—of him; vyavahāra—the behavior.
"This gentleman has promised to hand over his daughter to me, yet now he does not follow his promise. Please ask him about his behavior."
tabe sei viprere puchila sarva-jana
'kanyā kene nā deha, yadi diyācha vacana'
tabe—then; sei—that; viprerebrāhmaṇa; puchila—asked; sarva-jana—all the people; kanyā—daughter; kene—why; deha—you do not give in charity; yadi—if; diyācha—have given; vacana—word of honor.
All the people gathered there asked the elderly brāhmaṇa, "If you have already promised to give him your daughter in charity, why are you not fulfilling your promise? You have given your word of honor."
vipra kahe,--'śuna, loka, mora nivedana
kabe ki baliyāchi, mora nāhika smaraṇa'
vipra kahe—the senior brāhmaṇa replied; śuna—please hear; loka—all people; mora—my; nivedana—submission; kabe—when; ki—what; baliyāchi—I have said; mora—my; nāhika—there is not; smaraṇa—remembrance.
The elderly brāhmaṇa said, "My dear friends, please hear what I have to submit. I do not exactly remember making a promise like that."
eta śuni' tāṅra putra vākya-cchala pāñā
pragalbha ha-iyā kahe sammukhe āsiñā
eta śuni'-hearing this; tāṅra putra—his son; vākya-cchala—for jugglery of words; pāñā—getting a chance; pragalbha—impudent; ha-iyā—becoming; kahe—says; sammukhe—in the front; āsiñā—coming.
When the elderly brāhmaṇa's son heard this, he took the opportunity to juggle some words. Becoming very impudent, he stood before the assembly and spoke as follows.
'tīrtha-yātrāya pitāra saṅge chila bahu dhana
dhana dekhi ei duṣṭera laite haila mana
tīrtha-yātrāya—when touring the holy places; pitāra—my father; saṅge—with; chila—there was; bahu—much; dhana—money; dhana—money; dekhi—seeing; ei—this; duṣṭera—of the rogue; laite—to take; haila—it was; mana—the intention.
"While touring various holy places of pilgrimage, my father carried much money. Seeing the money, this rogue decided to take it away.
āra keha saṅge nāhi, ei saṅge ekala
dhuturā khāoyāñā bāpe karila pāgala
āra—anyone; keha—else; saṅge—in company; nāhi—there was not; ei—this brāhmaṇa; saṅge—in company; ekala—alone; dhuturā—an intoxicant; khāoyāñā—making him eat; bāpe—my father; karila—made; pāgalamad.
"There was no one besides this man with my father. Giving him an intoxicant known as dhuturā to eat, this rogue made my father mad.
saba dhana lañā kahe--'core la-ila dhana'
'kanyā dite cāhiyāche'--uṭhāila vacana
saba—all; dhana—money; lañā—taking; kahe—says; core—a thief; la-ila—took; dhana—all the money; kanyā—the daughter; dite—to give in charity; cāhiyāche—has promised; uṭhāila—has raised; vacana—a slogan.
"Having taken all my father's money, this rogue claimed that it was taken by some thief. Now he is claiming that my father has promised to give him his daughter in charity.
tomarā sakala loka karaha vicāre
'mora pitāra kanyā dite yogya ki ihāre'
tomarā—you; sakala—all; loka—people; karaha—just make; vicāre—judgment; mora—my; pitāra—of the father; kanyā—the daughter; dite—to give in charity; yogya—befitting; ki—is it; ihāre—to him.
"All of you assembled here are gentlemen. Please judge whether it is befitting to offer this poor brāhmaṇa my father's daughter."
eta śuni' lokera mane ha-ila saṁśaya
'sambhave,--dhana-lobhe loka chāḍe dharma-bhaya'
eta śuni'-hearing all this; lokera—of all the people; mane—in the minds; ha-ila—there was; saṁśaya—doubt; sambhave—possible; dhana-lobhe—by greed for money; loka—some man; chāḍe—gives up; dharma-bhaya—religious principles.
Hearing all these statements, all the people gathered there became a little doubtful. They thought it quite possible that because of attraction for riches one might give up his religious principles.
tabe choṭa-vipra kahe, "śuna, mahājana
nyāya jinibāre kahe asatya-vacana
tabe—at that time; choṭa-vipra—the young brāhmaṇa; kahe—says; śuna—please hear; mahā-jana—all gentlemen; nyāya—the argument; jinibāre—to win; kahe—he says; asatya-vacana—untruthful statements.
At that time the young brāhmaṇa said, "My dear gentlemen, please hear. Just to gain victory in an argument, this man is lying.
ei vipra mora sevāya tuṣṭa yabe hailā
'tore āmi kanyā diba' āpane kahilā
ei vipra—this brāhmaṇa; mora—my; sevāya—by the service; tuṣṭa—fully satisfied; yabe—when; hailā—he was; tore—to you; āmi—I; kanyā—daughter; diba—shall give; āpane—of his own accord; kahilā—promised.
"Being very satisfied with my service, this brāhmaṇa said to me of his own accord, 'I promise to hand over my daughter to you.'
tabe muñi niṣedhinu,--śuna, dvija-vara
tomāra kanyāra yogya nahi muñi vara
tabe—at that time; muñi—I; niṣedhinu—forbade; śuna—hear; dvija-vara—O best of the brāhmaṇas; tomāra—your; kanyāra—for the daughter; yogya—suitable; nahi—not; muñi—I; vara—husband.
"At that time I forbade him to do this, telling him, 'O best of the brāhmaṇas, I am not a fit husband for your daughter.
kāhāṅ tumi paṇḍita, dhanī, parama kulīna
kāhāṅ muñi daridra, mūrkha, nīca, kula-hīna
kāhāṅ—whereas; tumi—you; paṇḍita—learned scholar; dhanī—rich man; parama—first class; kulīna—aristocracy; kāhāṅ—whereas; muñi—I; daridra—poor man; mūrkha—not educated; nīca—fallen; kula-hīna—without aristocracy.
" 'Whereas you are a learned scholar, a rich man belonging to an aristocratic family, I am a poor man, uneducated and with no claim to aristocracy.'
tabu ei vipra more kahe bāra bāra
tore kanyā diluṅ, tumi karaha svīkāra
tabu—still; ei—this; viprabrāhmaṇa; more—to me; kahe—says; bāra bāra—again and again; tore—to you; kanyā—my daughter; diluṅ—I have given in charity; tumi—you; karaha—make; svīkāra—acceptance.
"Still this brāhmaṇa insisted. Again and again he asked me to accept his proposal, saying, 'I have given you my daughter. Please accept her.'
tabe āmi kahilāṅ--śuna, mahā-mati
tomāra strī-putra-jñātira nā habe sammati
tabe—at that time; āmi—I; kahilāṅ—said; śuna—please hear; mahā-mati—O intelligent brāhmaṇa; tomāra—your; strī-putra—wife and children; jñātira—kinsmen; habe sammati—will not agree.
"I then said, 'Please hear. You are a learned brāhmaṇa. Your wife, friends and relatives will never agree to this proposal.
kanyā dite nāribe, habe asatya-vacana
punarapi kahe vipra kariyā yatana
kanyā—daughter; dite—to give; nāribe—you will not be able; habe—it will become; asatya-vacana—a false statement; punarapi—again; kahe—he says; vipra—the brāhmaṇa; kariyā yatana—with great attention.
" 'My dear sir, you will not be able to fulfill your promise. Your promise will be broken.' Yet, again and again the brāhmaṇa emphasized his promise.
kanyā tore diluṅ, dvidhā nā kariha cite
ātma-kanyā diba, kebā pāre niṣedhite
kanyā—the daughter; tore—to you; diluṅ—I have given; dvidhā—hesitation; —do not; kariha—do; cite—within your mind; ātma-kanyā—my own daughter; diba—I shall give; kebā—who; pāre—is able; niṣedhite—to forbid.
" 'I have offered you my daughter. Do not hesitate. She is my daughter, and I shall give her to you. Who can forbid me?'
tabe āmi kahilāṅ dṛḍha kari' mana
gopālera āge kaha e-satya vacana
tabe—at that time; āmi—I; kahilāṅ—said; dṛḍha kari' mana—fixing my mind; gopālera āge—in front of the Gopāla Deity; kaha—speak; e-satya vacana—this truthful statement.
"At that time I concentrated my mind and requested the brāhmaṇa to make the promise before the Gopāla Deity.
tabe iṅho gopālera āgete kahila
tumi jāna, ei vipre kanyā āmi dila
tabe—at that time; iṅho—this gentleman; gopālera—of the Gopāla Deity; āgete—in front; kahila—he said; tumi jāna—my Lord, please know; ei vipre—unto this young brāhmaṇa; kanyā—my daughter; āmi—I; dila—have offered.
"Then this gentleman said in front of the Gopāla Deity, 'My dear Lord, please bear witness. I have offered my daughter to this brāhmaṇa in charity.'
tabe āmi gopālere sākṣī kariñā
kahilāṅ tāṅra pade minati kariñā
tabe—at that time; āmi—I; gopālere—to the Gopāla Deity; sākṣī—the witness; kariñā—making; kahilāṅ—said; tāṅra pade—at His lotus feet; minati—humility; kariñā—making.
"Accepting the Gopāla Deity as my witness, I then submitted the following at His lotus feet.
yadi ei vipra more nā dibe kanyā-dāna
sākṣī bolāimu tomāya, ha-io sāvadhāna
yadi—if; ei—this; viprabrāhmaṇa; more—to me; —not; dibe—will give; kanyā-dāna—his daughter in charity; sākṣī bolāimu—I shall call as a witness; tomāya—You; ha-io sāvadhāna—kindly be attentive.
" 'If this brāhmaṇa later hesitates to give me his daughter, my dear Lord, I shall call on You as a witness. Please note this with care and attention.'
ei vākye sākṣī mora āche mahājana
yāṅra vākya satya kari māne tribhuvana"
ei vākye—in this statement; sākṣī—witness; mora—my; āche—there is; mahājana—a great personality; yāṅra—whose; vākya—words; satya—true; kari—taking as; māne—accepts; tri-bhuvana—the whole world.
"Thus I have called upon a great personality in this transaction. I have asked the Supreme Godhead to be my witness. The entire world accepts the words of the Supreme Personality of Godhead."
Although the young brāhmaṇa described himself as having no claims to aristocracy and being an uneducated common man, still he had one good qualification: he believed that the Supreme Personality of Godhead was the topmost authority, he accepted the words of Lord Kṛṣṇa without hesitation, and he had firm faith in the Lord's consistency. According to Prahlāda Mahārāja, another authority on the Supreme Personality of Godhead, such a staunch and faithful devotee of the Lord must be understood to be a most learned scholar: tan manye 'dhītam uttamam (Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 7.5.24). A pure devotee who has firm faith in the words of the Supreme Personality of Godhead is to be considered a most learned scholar, the topmost aristocrat and the richest man in the whole world. All godly qualities automatically exist in such a devotee. In the preaching work of the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, we, as the servant of the servant of the servant of the servant of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, fully believe in the words of Kṛṣṇa and His servants, the disciplic succession. In this way we are presenting the words of Kṛṣṇa throughout the world. Even though we are neither a rich man nor a very learned scholar, and even though we do not belong to any aristocracy, this movement is still being welcomed and is very easily spreading all over the world. Although we are very poor and have no professional source of income, Kṛṣṇa supplies money whenever we need it. Whenever we need some men, Kṛṣṇa supplies them. Thus it is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā (6.22): yaṁ labdhvā cāparaṁ lābhaṁ manyate nādhikaṁ tataḥ. Actually, if we can attain the favor of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Kṛṣṇa, we do not need anything else. We certainly do not need those things which a mundane person considers to be material assets.
TEXTS 77-78
tabe baḍa-vipra kahe, "ei satya kathā
gopāla yadi sākṣī dena, āpane āsi' ethā
tabe kanyā diba āmi, jāniha niścaya"
tāṅra putra kahe,--'ei bhāla bāta haya'
tabe—at that time; baḍa-vipra—the elderly brāhmaṇa; kahe—says; ei satya kathā—this is true; gopāla—the Gopāla Deity; yadi—if; sākṣī—witness; dena—gives; āpane—personally; āsi'-coming; ethā—here; tabe—at that time; kanyā—daughter; diba—must give in charity; āmi—I; jāniha—you all know it; niścaya—certainly; tāṅra—his; putra—son; kahe—says; ei—this; bhāla—nice; bāta—statement; haya—is.
Taking this opportunity, the elderly brāhmaṇa immediately confirmed that this was really true. He said, "If Gopāla personally comes here to serve as a witness, I shall surely give my daughter to the young brāhmaṇa." The elderly brāhmaṇa's son immediately confirmed this, saying, "Yes, this is a very nice settlement."
As the Supersoul within the heart of all living entities, Kṛṣṇa knows everyone's desire, everyone's request and everyone's prayer. Although all these may be contradictory, the Lord has to create a situation in which everyone will be pleased. This is an instance of a marriage negotiation between an elderly brāhmaṇa and a youthful one. The elderly brāhmaṇa was certainly willing to give his daughter in charity to the young brāhmaṇa, but his son and relatives became impediments to this transaction. The elderly brāhmaṇa considered how to get out of this situation and still offer his daughter to the young brāhmaṇa. His son, an atheist and a very cunning fellow, was thinking of how to stop the marriage. The father and son were thinking in a contradictory way, yet Kṛṣṇa created a situation wherein they both agreed. They both agreed that if the Gopāla Deity would come and serve as a witness, the daughter would be given to the young brāhmaṇa.
baḍa-viprera mane,--'kṛṣṇa baḍa dayāvān
avaśya mora vākya teṅho karibe pramāṇa'
baḍa-viprera mane—within the mind of the elderly brāhmaṇa; kṛṣṇa—Lord Kṛṣṇa; baḍa—very; dayāvān—merciful; avaśya—certainly; mora—my; vākya—words; teṅho—He; karibe—will make; pramāṇa—evidence.
The elderly brāhmaṇa thought, "Since Lord Kṛṣṇa is very merciful, He will certainly come to prove my statement."
putrera mane,--'pratimā nā āsibe sākṣī dite'
ei buddhye dui-jana ha-ilā sammate
putrera mane—in the mind of the son; pratimā—the Deity; —not; āsibe—will come; sākṣī dite—to give witness; ei—this; buddhye—in understanding; dui-jana—both the father and the son; ha-ilā sammate—agreed.
The atheistic son thought, "It is not possible for Gopāla to come and bear witness." Thinking thus, both father and son agreed.
choṭa-vipra bale,--'patra karaha likhana
punaḥ yena nāhi cale e-saba vacana'
choṭa-vipra—the young brāhmaṇa; bale—says; patra—paper; karaha—do; likhana—writing; punaḥ—again; yena—so that; nāhi—not; cale—change; e-saba—all these; vacana—statements.
The young brāhmaṇa took this opportunity to speak: "Please write this down on paper in black and white so that you may not again change your word of honor."
tabe saba loka meli' patra ta' likhila
duṅhāra sammati lañā madhyastha rākhila
tabe—then; saba loka—all the people; meli'-gathered together; patra—paper; ta'-indeed; likhila—wrote; duṅh\ara—of both of them; sammati—the agreement; lañā—taking; madhya-stha—as mediator; rākhila—remained.
All the assembled people got this statement down in black and white and, taking the signatures of agreement from both of them, served as the mediators.
tabe choṭa-vipra kahe,--śuna, sarva-jana
ei vipra--satya-vākya, dharma-parāyaṇa
tabe—at that time; choṭa-vipra—the young brāhmaṇa; kahe—says; śuna—please hear; sarva-jana—O all gentlemen present here; ei vipra—this elderly brāhmaṇa; satya-vākya—always truthful; dharma-parāyaṇa—religious.
The young brāhmaṇa then said, "Will all you gentlemen present please hear me? This elderly brāhmaṇa is certainly truthful and is following religious principles.
sva-vākya chāḍite iṅhāra nāhi kabhu mana
svajana-mṛtyu-bhaye kahe asatya-vacana
sva-vākya—his own promise; chāḍite—to give up; iṅhāra—of this brāhmaṇa; nāhi—not; kabhu—at any time; mana—the mind; sva-jana—of his own kinsmen; mṛtyu-bhaye—fearing the suicide; kahe—says; asatya-vacana—untruthful words.
"He had no desire to break his promise, but fearing that his kinsmen would commit suicide, he deviated from the truth.
iṅhāra puṇye kṛṣṇe āni' sākṣī bolāiba
tabe ei viprera satya-pratijñā rākhiba
iṅhāra puṇye—by his piety; kṛṣṇe—Lord Kṛṣṇa; āni'-bringing; sākṣī—witness; bolāiba—I shall call; tabe—at that time; ei viprera—of this brāhmaṇa; satya—truthful; pratijñā—the promise; rākhiba—I shall keep.
"By the piety of the elderly brāhmaṇa, I shall call the Supreme Personality of Godhead as a witness. Thus I shall keep his truthful promise intact."
eta śuni' nāstika loka upahāsa kare
keha bale, īśvara--dayālu, āsiteha pāre
eta śuni'-hearing this; nāstika—atheistic; loka—class of men; upahāsa—joking; kare—do; keha bale—someone says; īśvara—God; dayālu—merciful; āsiteha pāre—He is able to come.
Hearing the emphatic statement of the younger brāhmaṇa, some atheists in the meeting began to cut jokes. However, someone else said, "After all, the Lord is merciful, and if He likes, He can come."
tabe sei choṭa-vipra gelā vṛndāvana
daṇḍavat kari' kahe saba vivaraṇa
tabe—after this; sei—that; choṭa-vipra—young brāhmaṇa; gelā—went; vṛndāvana—to Vṛndāvana; daṇḍavat kari'-after offering respects; kahe—tells; saba—all; vivaraṇa—the description.
After the meeting, the young brāhmaṇa started for Vṛndāvana. Upon arriving there, he first offered his respectful obeisances to the Deity and then narrated everything in full detail.
"brahmaṇya-deva tumi baḍa dayā-maya
dui viprera dharma rākha hañā sadaya
brahmaṇya-deva—O Lord of brahminical culture; tumi—You; baḍa—very; dayā-maya—merciful; dui—two; viprera—of brāhmaṇas; dharma—the religious principles; rākha—protect; hañā—becoming; sa-daya—merciful.
He said, "My Lord, You are the protector of brahminical culture, and You are also very merciful. Therefore, kindly show Your great mercy by protecting the religious principles of us two brāhmaṇas.
kanyā pāba,--mora mane ihā nāhi sukha
brāhmaṇera pratijñā yāya--ei baḍa duḥkha
kanyā pāba—I shall get the daughter; mora—my; mane—in the mind; ihā—this; nāhi—is not; sukha—happiness; brāhmaṇera—of a pure brāhmaṇa; pratijñā—the promise; yāya—becomes lost; ei—this; baḍa—very much; duḥkha—unhappiness.
"My dear Lord, I am not thinking to become happy by getting the daughter as a bride. I am simply thinking that the brāhmaṇa has broken his promise, and that is giving me great pain."
It was not at all the intention of the young brāhmaṇa to get the daughter of the elderly brāhmaṇa in marriage and thus enjoy material happiness and sense gratification. It was not for that reason that the young brāhmaṇa went to Vṛndāvana to ask the Supreme Personality of Godhead to act as a witness. His only concern was that the elderly brāhmaṇa had promised something, and if Gopāla did not bear witness to that transaction, then the older brāhmaṇa would incur a spiritual blemish. Therefore, the young brāhmaṇa wanted protection and help from the Deity. The young brāhmaṇa was thus a pure Vaiṣṇava, and he had no desire for sense gratification. He wanted only to serve the Supreme Personality of Godhead and the older brāhmaṇa, who was also a Vaiṣṇava and very devoted to the Lord.
eta jāni' tumi sākṣī deha, dayā-maya
jāni' sākṣī nāhi deya, tāra pāpa haya
eta jāni'-knowing this; tumi—You; sākṣī—witness; deha—please give; dayā-maya—O most merciful one; jāni'-knowing; sākṣī—witness; nāhi deya—does not give; tāra—for him; pāpa—sin; haya—there is.
The young brāhmaṇa continued, "My dear sir, You are very merciful and You know everything. Therefore, kindly be a witness in this case. A person who knows things as they are and still does not bear witness becomes involved in sinful activities."
The dealings between a devotee and the Lord are very simple. The young brāhmaṇa said to the Lord, "You know everything, but if You do not bear witness, You will be involved in sinful activities." There is no possibility, however, of the Lord's being involved in sinful activities. A pure devotee, even though he knows everything of the Supreme Lord, can speak with the Lord exactly as if He were a common man. Although the dealings between the Lord and His devotee are always very simple and open, there is formality. All these things happen because of the connection between the Lord and the devotee.
kṛṣṇa kahe,--vipra, tumi yāha sva-bhavane
sabhā kari' more tumi kariha smaraṇe
kṛṣṇa kahe—Lord Kṛṣṇa says; vipra—My dear brāhmaṇa; tumi—you; yāha—go back; sva-bhavane—to your own home; sabhā kari'-calling a meeting of all the men; more—of Me; tumi—you; kariha—just do; smaraṇe—remembering.
Lord Kṛṣṇa replied, "My dear brāhmaṇa, go back to your home and call a meeting of all the men. In that meeting, just try to remember Me.
āvirbhāva hañā āmi tāhāṅ sākṣī diba
tabe dui viprera satya pratijñā rākhiba
āvirbhāva—appearance; hañā—making; āmi—I; tāhāṅ—there; sākṣī—witness; diba—shall give; tabe—at that time; dui—two; viprera—of the brāhmaṇas; satya—truthful; pratijñā—promise; rākhiba—I shall keep.
"I shall certainly appear there, and at that time I shall protect the honor of both you brāhmaṇas by bearing witness to the promise."
vipra bale,--"yadi hao caturbhuja-mūrti
tabu tomāra vākye kāru nā habe pratīti
vipra bale—the young brāhmaṇa says; yadi—if; hao—You become; catuḥ-bhuja—four-handed; mūrti—Deity; tabu—still; tomāra—Your; vākye—in the word; kāru—of anyone; —not; habe—there will be; pratīti—belief.
The young brāhmaṇa replied, "My dear sir, even if You appear there as a four-handed Viṣṇu Deity, still, none of those people will believe in Your words.
ei mūrti giyā yadi ei śrī-vadane
sākṣī deha yadi--tabe sarva-loka śune"
ei—this; mūrti—in the form; giyā—going; yadi—if; ei—this; śrī-vadane—from Your beautiful face; sākṣī—witness; deha—You give; yadi—if; tabe—then; sarva-loka—all people; śune—will hear.
"Only if You go there in this form of Gopāla and speak the words from Your beautiful face will Your testimony be heard by all the people."
kṛṣṇa kahe,--"pratimā cale, kothāha nā śuni"
vipra bale,--"pratimā hañā kaha kene vāṇī
kṛṣṇa kahe—Lord Kṛṣṇa says; pratimā cale—a Deity walks; kothāha—anywhere; śuni—I have not heard; vipra bale—the young brāhmaṇa replies; pratimā hañā—in Your Deity form; kaha kene vāṇī—how do You speak words.
Lord Kṛṣṇa said, "I've never heard of a Deity's walking from one place to another." The brāhmaṇa replied, "That is true, but how is it that You are speaking to me, although You are a Deity?
pratimā naha tumi--sākṣāt vrajendra-nandana
vipra lāgi' kara tumi akārya-karaṇa"
pratimā—a statue; naha—are not; tumi—You; sākṣāt—directly; vrajendra-nandana—the son of Nanda Mahārāja; vipra lāgi'-for the sake of the brāhmaṇa; kara tumi—You can do; akārya-karaṇa—an action You have never done before.
"My dear Lord, You are not a statue; You are directly the son of Mahārāja Nanda. Now, for the sake of the old brāhmaṇa, You can do something You have never done before."
hāsiñā gopāla kahe,--"śunaha, brāhmaṇa
tomāra pāche pāche āmi kariba gamana
hāsiñā—smiling; gopāla—the Lord Gopāla; kahe—says; śunaha—just hear; brāhmaṇa—O My dear brāhmaṇa; tomāra—you; pāche pāche—behind; āmi—I; kariba—shall do; gamana—walking.
Śrī Gopālajī then smiled and said, "My dear brāhmaṇa, just listen to Me. I shall walk behind you, and in this way I shall go with you."
The conversation between Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa and the brāhmaṇa is proof that the Lord in His arcā-mūrti, or form made of material elements, is not material, for those elements, although separated from the Lord, are also a part of the Lord's energy, as stated in the Bhagavad-gītā. Because the elements are the Lord's own energy and because there is no difference between the energy and the energetic, the Lord can appear through any element. Just as the sun can act through the sunshine and thus distribute its heat and light, so Kṛṣṇa, by His inconceivable power, can appear in His original spiritual form in any material element, including stone, wood, paint, gold, silver and jewels, because the material elements are all His energy. The śāstras warn, arcye viṣṇau śilā-dhīḥ . . . nārakī saḥ: one should never think of the arcā-mūrti, the Deity within the temple, as stone, wood or any other material element. Because of his advanced devotional position, the younger brāhmaṇa knew that although the Deity of Gopāla appeared to be stone, He was not stone. He was the son of Nanda Mahārāja, Vrajendra-nandana Himself.
As such, the Deity can act exactly as the Lord did in His original form as Kṛṣṇa. Lord Kṛṣṇa was talking to the young brāhmaṇa just to test his knowledge about the arcā-vigraha. In other words, those who have understood the science of Kṛṣṇa-Kṛṣṇa's name, form, quality and so forth-can also talk with the Deity. To an ordinary person, however, the Deity will appear to be made of stone, wood or some other material. In the higher sense, since all material elements ultimately emanate from the supreme spiritual entity, nothing is really material. Being omnipotent, omnipresent and omniscient, Kṛṣṇa can deal with His devotees in any form without difficulty. By the mercy of the Lord, the devotee knows perfectly well about the Lord's dealings. Indeed, he can talk face to face with the Lord.
ulaṭiyā āmā tumi nā kariha daraśane
āmāke dekhile, āmi rahiba sei sthāne
ulaṭiyā—turning your face; āmā—Me; tumi—you; —not; kariha—do; daraśane—seeing; āmāke—Me; dekhile—if you see; āmi—I; rahiba—shall stay; sei sthāne—in that very place.
The Lord continued, "Do not try to see Me by turning around. As soon as you see Me, I shall remain stationary in that very place.
nūpurera dhvani-mātra āmāra śunibā
sei śabde āmāra gamana pratīti karibā
nūpurera—of the ankle bells; dhvani-mātra—the sound only; āmāra—My; śunibā—you will hear; sei śabde—by hearing that sound; āmāra—My; gamana—coming; pratīti—understanding; karibā—you will do.
"You will know that I am walking behind you by the sound of My ankle bells.
TEXT 100
eka-sera anna rāndhi' kariha samarpaṇa
tāhā khāñā tomāra saṅge kariba gamana
eka-sera—one kilogram; anna—of rice; rāndhi'-cooking; kariha—do; samarpaṇa—offering; tāhā—that; khāñā—eating; tomāra—of you; saṅge—in the company; kariba—I shall do; gamana—walking.
"Cook one kilogram of rice daily and offer it. I shall eat that rice and follow behind you."
TEXT 101
āra dina ājñā māgi' calilā brāhmaṇa
tāra pāche pāche gopāla karilā gamana
āra dina—the next day; ājñā—permission; māgi'-begging; calilā—started; brāhmaṇa—the young brāhmaṇa; tāra—him; pāche—behind; pāche—behind; gopāla—Lord Gopāla; karilā—began; gamana—following.
The next day, the brāhmaṇa begged permission from Gopāla and started for his country. Gopāla followed him, step by step.
TEXT 102
nūpurera dhvani śuni' ānandita mana
uttamānna pāka kari' karāya bhojana
nūpurera—of the ankle bells; dhvani—the sounds; śuni'-hearing; ānandita—very much pleased; mana—the mind; uttama-anna—first-class rice; pāka—cooking; kari'-doing; karāya—causes; bhojana—eating.
While Gopāla followed the young brāhmaṇa, the tinkling sound of His ankle bells could be heard. The brāhmaṇa became very pleased, and he cooked first-class rice for Gopāla to eat.
TEXT 103
ei-mate cali' vipra nija-deśe āilā
grāmera nikaṭa āsi' manete cintilā
ei-mate—in this way; cali'-walking; vipra—the brāhmaṇa; nija—own; deśe—to the country; āilā—returned; grāmera—to the village; nikaṭa—near; āsi'-coming; manete—within his mind; cintilā—thought.
The young brāhmaṇa walked and walked in this way until he eventually arrived in his own country. When he neared his own village, he began to think as follows.
TEXT 104
'ebe muñi grāme āinu, yāimu bhavana
lokere kahiba giyā sākṣīra āgamana
ebe—now; muñi—I; grāme—to the village; āinu—have come; yāimu—I shall go; bhavana—to my home; lokere—the people; kahiba—I shall tell; giyā—going there; sākṣīra—of the witness; āgamana—about the arrival.
"I have now come to my village, and I shall go to my home and tell all the people that the witness has arrived."
TEXT 105
sākṣāte nā dekhile mane pratīti nā haya
ihāṅ yadi rahena, tabu nāhi kichu bhaya'
sākṣāte—directly; —not; dekhile—if seeing; mane—in the mind; pratīti—assurance; —not; haya—there is; ihāṅ—here; yadi—if; rahena—the Lord stays; tabu—still; nāhi—there is not; kichu—any; bhaya—fear.
The brāhmaṇa then began to think that if the people didn't directly see the Gopāla Deity, they would not believe that He had arrived. "But even if Gopāla stays here," he thought, "there is still nothing to fear."
TEXT 106
eta bhāvi' sei vipra phiriyā cāhila
hāsiñā gopāla-deva tathāya rahila
eta bhāvi'-thinking like this; sei—that; viprabrāhmaṇa; phiriyā—turning; cāhila—saw; hāsiñā—smiling; gopāla-deva—Lord Gopāladeva, the Supreme Personality of Godhead; tathāya—there; rahila—stayed.
Thinking this, the brāhmaṇa turned to look back, and He saw that Gopāla, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, was standing there smiling.
TEXT 107
brāhmaṇere kahe,--"tumi yāha nija-ghara
ethāya rahiba āmi, nā yāba ataḥpara"
brāhmaṇere kahe—He asked the brāhmaṇa; tumi—you; yāha—go; nija-ghara—to your own home; ethāya—here in this place; rahiba—shall stay; āmi—I; —not; yāba—shall go; ataḥpara—hereafter.
The Lord told the brāhmaṇa, "Now you can go home. I shall stay here and shall not leave."
TEXT 108
tabe sei vipra yāi nagare kahila
śuniñā sakala loka camatkāra haila

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