Jiva Goswami's Final Word: Sankalpa-kalpa-druma

I have been reading from Jiva Goswami's Gopāla-campū (GC) at the Jiva Institute. Classes are held Monday to Friday from 5-6 in the evening. As I prepared my course, I began going over Saṅkalpa-kalpa-druma (SKD), which gives further clues into Sri Jiva's purpose in writing GC.

Saṅkalpa-kalpa-druma (SKD) is the last book Jiva Goswami wrote, which came at the end of his life. In the beginning of the book, which has over 700 verses, Jiva tells his mind that since he is growing old, it should be fixed on Krishna's eternal pastimes. SKD was written after GC, and in some ways it is a recapitulation or summary explanation of the basis or theory of GC. What was Jiva trying to do in his magnum opus?

One of the verses given by Vishwanath and his senior contemporary Radha Krishna Das Goswami to support their idea that Jiva Goswami was actually dissimulating when he wrote in various places his defense of svakīyā-vāda is the one which concludes the commentary to 1.21, after his elaborate argumentation there. That verse is probably better known than either GC or SKD:

svecchayā likhitaṁ kiṁcit kiṁcid atra parecchayā |
yat pūrvāpara-sambaddhaṁ tat pūrvam aparaṁ param ||
Some things I have written of my own volition, some at the behest of others. That which is consistent throughout is the former, that which is not, the latter.
The challenge here is to establish Jiva Goswami's overall intent, and he himself frequently refers to a verse from the Sanskrit tradition that is of great help in conducting such an analysis:

upakramopasaṁhārāv abhyāso’pūrvatā phalam
arthavādopapattī ca liṅgaṁ tātparya-nirṇaye
The purport of any text can be established by the study of six indicators: {1} the beginning and concluding part, {2} what is repeated, {3} the original aspects described, {4} the result, {5} what it glorifies, and {6} logical establishment.
Since SKD is the concluding work of Jiva Goswami's career, it should be considered particularly important in this regard.

A fuller discussion can be found in the following series of article, especially The Parakiya Rebuttal, and in the summary of Gopala Champu, especially part 5. I concluded "The Parakiya Rebuttal" with the following verse from GC, which appears to directly contradict the above svecchayā verse. This is spoken by Paurnamasi to Vrinda Devi in the first volet of arguments defending the svakīyā position in GC 1.15.18:

avacam avocam uvāca ca vacmi hi vaktāsmi vakṣyāmi |
ucyāsam idaṁ vacyāṁ vacāni no ced avakṣyaṁ na ||
I was saying it, I have said it, even in dreams did I say it;
I am saying it, I am about to say it, and I will go on saying it;
I should say it, I pray to God that I may go on saying it,
I must say it, and if it weren't so, then I would never have said it at all.
At any rate, I bring these preliminary points up again to introduce some statements from the SKD, which I shall elaborate on in future articles. This particular controversy is directly connected to the problem of the prakaṭa-līlā and the nitya-līlā, which is also a direct theme of the SKD.

Two verses in particular give us a clue as to Jiva Goswami's intention. The first of these says that the prakaṭa-līlā and the nitya-līlā are mutually related as seed to tree, perpetuating each other in a chain of mutual creation:

sā ca janmādikā sā ca nityā līlā śrutīr itā |
mithaḥ pūrvā parā ca syād bīja-vṛkṣa-pravāhavat ||1||
The pastimes of birth and so on, and the pastimes in the eternal realm, have been presented to your ears. They have a mutual prior-posterior relationship, like the cycle of seed to tree and tree to seed. (SKD 3.1)
This is a very interesting analogy, and the same analogy is used in a bit different way at the beginning of SKD as an explanation of the title of the book itself, "The Desire Tree of My Vow," where he says that the prakaṭa- or janmādi-līlā is the root of the tree, the nitya-līlā is its trunk (in this case he means the chapter in the book of that name, which gives the general outline of a day in Radha and Krishna's nitya-līlā.

mūlaṁ janmādi-līlāsya skandhaḥ syān nitya-līlatā |
śākhās tat-tad-ṛtu-ślokāḥ phalaṁ premamayī sthitiḥ ||11||
The root of this tree is Krishna's pastimes in the prakaṭa-līlā, beginning with his birth and so on. The trunk is the nitya-līlā. The descriptions of the seasons in Vrindavan are the branches, and the loving permanent situation in the nitya-līlā is the fruit. (SKD 1.10)
This describes the four chapters of the SKD. The third chapter is the branches and leaves, which is the description of the six seasons, also part of the nitya-līlā. The fourth chapter is called phala-niṣpatti. Since that chapter is short – only ten verses – I am going to present the translation here in its entirety. Those looking for consistency in Jiva's work will be hard pressed to find evidence contrary to this summary of what he has stated again and again:

ghoṣe sva-prema-koṣe pitṛ-mukha-sukhada-svīya-vṛndena dīvyan
kaṁsena preritebhyas tam atibhayamayaṁ vīkṣya nighnan muhus tān
hantuṁ teṣām apaśyann adhi madhu-puri taṁ hantum añcan sa-vṛndam
hatvā taṁ ghoṣam āgāt tad atula-sukha-kṛd yaḥ sadā taṁ bhajāmi
I worship forever that Krishna who enjoyed his pastimes in the cowherd community, the treasure-chest of his love, with his own folk headed by his own father, all of whom are sources of joy for him. Seeing that this village was becoming a fearsome place due to the attacks of demons sent by Kamsa, he destroyed those demons. When he saw that he had not been able to finish them off, he went with his friends to Mathura to kill Kamsa, their root. When that was done, he returned to the cowherd community, bringing incomparable joy to all.
rādhādyāḥ kṛṣṇa-kāntāḥ svayam avataraṇaṁ kṛṣṇavat prāpya līlā-
śaktyā vismṛtya nityāṁ sthitim aparatayā jñāta-kṛṣṇās tathāpi |
rāgād aspaṣṭa-kṛṣṇa-śrayaṇa-sukha-ratā prāntataḥ kṛṣṇam eva
spaṣṭaṁ jagmuḥ sva-kāntaṁ tam atisukha-sudhā-sindhu-magnāntarāḥ smaḥ ||2||
Radha and Krishna's other eternally beloved gopis descended into the material world just like Krishna. There they forgot their eternal situation with him due to the Lila Shakti and knew Krishna as someone unrelated to them. Even so, out of spontaneous love for him, they became attached to the pleasure of loving Krishna, taking shelter of him secretly. Then in the end they went to him openly as their own husband, as a result of which we are immersed in the ocean of the nectar of extreme happiness.
haṁho saukhyaṁ sura-dviṭ-kaṭu-kaṭaka-ghaṭā-preṣṭha-kaṁsādi-duṣṭān
hatvā tat-kliṣṭa-cittāṁ pitṛ-mukha-janatāṁ nirvṛtāṁ suṣṭhu cakre |
kiṁ cānyaḥ sva-priyāṇāṁ patir iti bahir akhyāti-duḥkhāni hṛtvā
tat-tad-viśleṣa-pīḍā-cchid ayam atijagad-dṛṣṭi-goṣṭhe vibhāti ||3||
What amazing joy! Krishna destroyed the wicked Kamsa and other enemies of the gods whose evil armies were overrunning the earth, and then brought blissful joy to Nanda and the people of Braj who had been tormented by them. What is more, he then removed the misery that came to his beloved gopis from the infamy that they had other husbands. And so this Krishna, have cut away the Brijvasis suffering that had arisen from his separation from them, stands glorious in that cowherd settlement which is beyond the vision of this world.
The above sequence of events is followed in GC. See the final section of the summary.

prātar mātuḥ sva-hastād aśana-sukha-kṛtī labdha-tātādy-anujñaḥ
śrī-rāmādi-prasaktaḥ surabhi-gaṇa-śataṁ pālayan moda-yuktaḥ |
sandhyāyāṁ gopa-gopī-sukhada-gṛha-gatiḥ sānurāgaṁ kṣapāyām
tat-tad-dīvyad-vihāraḥ sphuratu tava manaḥ sarvadā kṛṣṇa-candraḥ
In the morning Krishna joyfully eats the breakfast his mother cooks for him with her own hand, then taking his father and other senior Brajvasis' permission leaves and spends the day with Balaram grazing the hundreds of godly cows. Then in the evening he returns to the blissful abode of the cowherd men and women, and at night enthusiastically watches the performances they have put on. May this Krishna Chandra always appear before you, O mind!
The previous two verses follow the contents of the first two chapters of Gopāla-campū.

janmādyaṁ svīya-vṛttaṁ kavi-bharata-kalā-citra-yogena dṛśya-
prāyaṁ tanvan sabhāyāṁ rahasi tu dayitā-pūrva-rāgādy udantam |
vargaṁ tat-tan-nisargaṁ nijam anu vijayī sarva-sāt-parva kurvan
divya-divya-kriyābhir viharaṇa-kutukī nandatān nanda-sūnuḥ ||5||
In the assembly, the ever-victorious son of Nanda enjoys hearing all his own activities beginning from his birth onward as they are performed by poets, actors, and picture story-tellers who make all these events come alive. Then afterwards, in private, the stories of his love affairs with Radha and the gopis are told from their beginning. By way of both his worldly and other-worldly activities he turns everything into a festival for his devotees, each according to their mood. May he be ever joyful.
This is the way things are told in Gopāla-campū also. For the separation of the two performance venues, see the Kaiśora-vilāsa-campū.

yaḥ śrī-paryanta-yācyānv itir iha paśupa-śreṇi-bandhur yaśodā-
nanda-svīyāṅga-jātaḥ subala-mukha-sakhaḥ kiṁ ca rādhādi-kāntaḥ |
sa śrī-gopāla-nāmā surabhi-kulam ahaḥ pālayan divya-kelir
naktaṁ rāsādi-līlā-lalitatama-gatiḥ sarvadā syād gatir naḥ ||6||
The gods and goddesses up to Lakshmi herself pray to become his servants, he is the kinsman of all strata of the cowherd community, he was born directly from the bodies of Nanda and Yashoda, Subala is chief among his friends, and finally, he is the beloved of Radha and the gopis. This Krishna, named Gopala, spends his day in various amusements while grazing the cows and his night in the Rasa dance, dancing with the most charming movements. May he always be our shelter.
śrīmad-vṛndāvanendor madhupa-khaga-mṛgāḥ śreṇi-lokā dvijātā
dāsā lālyāḥ surabhyaḥ sahacara-halabhṛt-tāta-mātr-ādi-vargāḥ |
preyasyas tāsu rādhā-pramukha-vara-dṛśāś ceti vṛndaṁ yathordhvaṁ
tad-rūpāloka-tṛṣṇak pramadam anudinaṁ hanta paśyāma karhi ||7||
All the bees, birds and animals, the various guilds, the brahmanas, servants, the children, the cows, his friends along with Balaram and his father and mother, his doe-eyed lady loves, of whom Radha is the foremost, are the companions of the moon of Vrindavan, and he is ever eager to associate with them, each of whom is more intimate with him than the one before. He wishes to see them every day. Ah, when will I see him?
śaśvad dhyāyati dūraga-sthiti mithaḥ, sūkṣma-prathaṁ cāyati
prājyāntar-gatam, ātta-narma tu sakhī-madhya-sthitaṁ paśyati |
rādhā-mādhava-nāma-dheya-mithunaṁ vighnān atītyāmitān
dāmpatye sthitam atra vā yadi rahaḥ prāptaṁ tadā kiṁ punaḥ ||8||
That divine couple named Radha and Madhava constantly meditate on each other when separated, when out in public they cast secretive glances at one another, and they look at each other with open amusement while in the midst of her sakhis. If after overcoming all the countless obstacles that had been standing in their way they are now here together in the secret eternal realm as a married couple, then what more can we ask for?
rādhā-kṛṣṇa-yugaṁ muhur vighaṭanām uttīrya dāmpatya-bhāk
pratyekāntam udasram ekataraga-svāpāntar antar mithaḥ |
vaktraṁ paśyati mārṣṭi locana-puṭaṁ nāsāgram uddaṇḍayan
niṁste gaṇḍa-yugaṁ hṛdā hṛdi milal lelīyate śarmaṇi ||9||
Even in their married state, the Divine Couple Radha and Krishna again and again have to overcome the pain of separation, when one of them falls asleep then the other's face is filled with tears and looks upon the face of the first, and wiping the tears away and lifting her chin kisses both cheeks. Then the two embrace heart to heart, becoming totally immersed in joy.
See Ujjvala 14.225-226.

gaura-śyāma-rucojjvalābhir amalair akṣṇor vilāsotsavair
nṛtyantībhir aśeṣa-mādana-kalā-vaidagdhya-digdhātmabhiḥ |
anyonya-priyatā sudhā-parimala-stomonmadābhiḥ sadā
rādhā-mādhava-mādhurībhir abhitaś cittaṁ samākrāmyatām ||10||
Let my heart be ever overpowered from all sides by the sweetness of Sri Sri Radha and Madhava who have the golden and blackish brilliance, manifesting the pure, festival of the movements of their eyes dancing, 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.
This last verse is also the concluding verse of the Krishna Sandarbha.

I would like to discuss a little more extensively about the relation between the prakaṭa-līlā and the nitya-līlā as mentioned in SKD in another article following up. Jai Radhe for now.


Ānanda das said…
Dear Jagat prabhu,

Thanks for another erudite essay. I very much enjoy your thoughtful writings. I found this bit of poetic verb-paradigm word play quite amusing and cheerful.

“I was saying it, I have said it, even in dreams did I say it;
I am saying it, I am about to say it, and I will go on saying it;
I should say it, I pray to God that I may go on saying it,
I must say it, and if it weren't so, then I would never have said it at all.”

Kind regards,
Ananda das


Note: I'd like to draw to your attention a few small typos (or what I believe to be typos).

I pray to God that I may go one saying it --> I pray to God that I may go on saying it

their own husband. As a result of which --> their own husband, as a result of which

And so this Krishna, have cut away the Brijvasis suffering that had arisen from his separation from them, he stands -->
And so this Krishna, having cut away the Brijvasis’ suffering that had arisen from his separation from them, stands

Jagadananda Das said…
Thanks Jai Radhe. Making the changes.

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