Tuesday, July 07, 2015

The Sandarbhas summarized in four verses

I was reflecting again on the idea of abbreviated works, like the four-verse Gita or Bhagavatam. We have also found a four-verse Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu and a five-verse essential Gīta-govinda. Now here we present the essential four verses of the Sandarbhas.

As we would expect, since the Sandarbhas deal with the subjects of sambandha, abhidheya and prayojana, Jiva Goswami summarizes each of the divisions of the Sandarbhas with a verse at the conclusion of each. So the Kṛṣṇa-sandarbha, which concludes the section on sambandha has one verse that tells us what Jiva's final word in sambandha-tattva. Similarly, Bhakti-sandarbha concludes with a verse that similarly summarizes the abhidheya and Prīti-sandarbha the prayojana. The first verse, however, comes at the very beginning of Tattva-sandarbha and though it mentions prema, and bhakti, its main emphasis is again on sambandha-tattva. So the summary looks like this:
  • Tattva-sandarbha (sambandha-tattva, general, preliminary)
  • Kṛṣṇa-sandarbha (sambandha-tattva, specific, concluding)
  • Bhakti-sandarbha (abhidheya)
  • Prīti-sandarbha (prayojana
These verses are worthy of deep reflection and meditation, keeping an eye to the subtleties that they contain. So, without elaborating too much on the verses, just giving their translations, here they are:

(1)

yasya brahmeti saṁjñāṁ kvacid api nigame yāti cin-mātra-sattāpy
aṁśo yasyāṁśakaiḥ svair vibhavati vaśayann eva māyāṁ pumāṁś ca |
ekaṁ yasyaiva rūpaṁ vilasati parama-vyomni nārāyaṇākhyaṁ
sa śrī-kṛṣṇo vidhattāṁ svayam iha bhagavān prema tat-pāda-bhājām ||8||
In one feature Sri Krishna exists as pure consciousness, without any manifest characteristics, and is referred to as Brahman in some portions of the Vedas. In another feature He expands as the Purusha, who regulates the external potency, Maya, by His many plenary portions. In yet another of His principal forms He is Narayana, resplendent in the spiritual sky, Vaikuntha. May that Sri Krishna, the original complete Absolute Truth (svayam bhagavān), bestow love for Himself on those who worship His lotus feet in this world.
This is the general overview of sambandha, following the vadanti verse (1.2.11) of the Bhāgavatam. Note that Chaitanya Charitamrita 1.1.3 is calqued on this one. The next verse takes us beyond the Bhāgavatam. Krishna without Radha is given as the sambandha here, though the word Shri is usually interpreted to mean Krishna's Shakti.

The verse also includes the abhidheya (tat-pāda-bhājām) and the prayojana (prema), and allows that grace is the ultimate deciding factor, so it is more than simply the tattva.

(2)

gaura-śyāma-rucojjvalābhir amalair akṣṇor vilāsotsavair
nṛtyantībhir aśeṣa-mādana-kalā-vaidagdhya-digdhātmabhiḥ |
anyonya-priyatā-sudhā-parimala-stomonmadābhiḥ sadā
rādhā-mādhava-mādhurībhir abhitaś cittaṁ mamākrāmyatām ||
Let my heart be ever overpowered from all sides by the sweetness of Sri Sri Radha and Madhava who have a golden and blackish brilliance, manifesting the ever pure festival of their dancing eye movements, who are completely soaked in the expertise of the art of amorous activities, and who are supremely delighted by the fragrance of the ambrosia of mutual love.
Radha and Krishna, or the Divine Couple, or Krishna in the association of His primary potency, Radha. This is the final sambandha of the Gaudiya Vaishnava. In my view, Jiva Goswami spreads his net wide, but this is the fish he wants to catch and that is shown by his concluding verse to Krishna Sandarbha. And, in fact, for those who get this far, there is no need to go back.

(3)

guruḥ śāstraṁ śraddhā rucir anugatiḥ siddhir iti me
yad etat tat sarvaṁ caraṇa-kamalaṁ rājati yayoḥ |
kṛpā-mādhvīkena snapita-nayanāmbhoja-yugalau
sadā rādhā-kṛṣṇāv aśaraṇa-gatī tau mama gatiḥ ||
The guru, scripture, faith, taste, adherence and accomplishment… all these things are found at the lotus feet of Radha and Krishna, whose lotus eyes are bathed in tears of ambrosial compassion. may they become my shelter for they alone give shelter to those who have none.
Note that though the Bhakti-sandarbha is about the practices of devotion, the summary indicates an unfamiliar series of six principal stages or apparent causes of prema, but all of which are dependent on divine grace. This is an apt summary of the process of bhakti. Putting Guru and Shastra at the beginning prior to faith is an interesting approach, but could be said to be two stages of shravanam, which is emphasized throughout the Bhagavatam and Bhakti Sandarbha as the first stage of devotion, which even leads to faith. "Guru" is any sadhu whose presence inculcates faith in the devotee. All these six stages are dependent on Divine Grace.

(4)

ālībhiḥ paripālitaḥ pravalitaḥ sānandam ālokitaḥ
pratyāśaṁ sumanaḥ-phalodaya-vidhau sāmodam āmoditaḥ |
vṛndāraṇya-bhuvi prakāśa-madhuraḥ sarvātiśāyi-śriyā
rādhā-mādhavayoḥ pramodayatu mām ullāsa-kalpa-drumaḥ ||
The girlfriends of Srimati Radharani carefully nurture the desire tree of the Divine Couple Radha and Madhava’s jubilant pastimes in Vrindavan’s fertile soil, in constant expectation of seeing its beautiful flowers and fruits; they watch it develop and grow, and when those flowers and fruits appear, they are the ones to relish them. May that tree, by its unparalleled beauty, give pleasure to us also.
The role of Radha's sakhis is mentioned for the first time in the explanation of the prayojana, which is apt and significant. Also Vrindavan is spoken of for the first time.

Watch the video. If you want to skip the long-winded introduction, go to minute 10:


1 comment:

Vinodh said...

This is so nice and it made my day! Thank you dear Jagat ji.