Bhakti Sandarbha 320.2-4 : Love for Bhagavan in the Erotic Mood is Accepted




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320.2 Projecting Lustful Feelings Upon Bhagavān is Not a Transgression

अथ कामुकत्वाद्यारोपणाद्यधरपानादिरूपस्तत्र व्यवहारोऽपि नातिक्रमहेतुः। यतो "लोकवत्तु लीलाकैवल्यम्" (वे.सू. २.१.३३) इति न्यायेन लीला तत्र स्वभावत एव सिद्धा।

We will now consider the second possibility. [See 320.1] Even such behavior as projecting lustful feelings upon Bhagavān and kissing Him, etc., is not a transgression of the codes of conduct, because it is said: “Bhagavān's pastimes exactly resemble those of human beings.” (lokavat tu līlā-kaivalyam, VS 2.1.33) By this principle it is understood that Bhagavān’s pastimes are naturally carried out in this manner.

तत्र च श्रीभूर्लीलादीभिस्तस्य तादृशलीलायाः श्रीवैकुण्ठादिषु नित्यसिद्धत्वेन स्वतन्त्रलीलाविनोदस्य तस्याभिरुचितत्वावगमात् तादृशलीलारसमोहस्वाभाविकं भगवत्ताद्यननुसन्धानमपि कामुकत्वादिमननमपि च तदभिरुचितत्वेनैवावगम्यते।

Such pastimes of Bhagavān ever exist in Vaikuṇṭha with His consorts, such as Śrī, Bhū and Līlā, because scripture explains that Bhagavān, who delights in the utter freedom of His play, is exhilarated by such pastimes. And it is understood that this attraction creates a kind of natural illusion in Him, because of the intoxicating bliss of these pastimes, leading Him even to forget that He is God and to become absorbed in passionate desires.

तथा तत्प्रेयसीजनानामपि तत्स्वरूपशक्तिविग्रहत्वेन परमशुद्धरूपत्वात् ततो न्यूनताभावाच्च तदधरपानादिकमपि नानुरूपं, पूर्वयुक्त्या तदभिरुचितमेव च। न च प्राकृतवामाजनेन दोषः प्रसञ्जनीयः। तद्योग्यं तादृशं भावं स्वरूपशक्तिविग्रहत्वं च प्राप्यैव तदिच्छयैव तत्प्राप्तेः।

In addition, Bhagavān’s beloved consorts, being embodiments of His internal potency and supremely pure, are not less than Him. Thus, it is not at all inappropriate for them to engage in amorous play with Bhagavān, such as kissing Him. In fact, by the logic already given, it is fully according to His liking.

Neither should one ascribe any fault to the women of this world who develop such feelings of conjugal attraction for Bhagavān, because it is only by His will that they attain Him and are thus able to engage in conjugal play with Him, after first developing the appropriate temperament of amorous love and acquiring forms constituted of the internal potency.


320.3 Amorous Desire for Bhagavān is not Sinful

अथ पापश्रवणेन च न पापावहोऽसौ कामः, तदश्रवणादेव। अतः पतिभावयुक्ते च तत्र सुतरां न दोषः, प्रत्युत स्तुतिः श्रूयते।

याः सम्पर्यचरन् प्रेम्णा पादसंवाहनादिभिः।
जगद्गुरुं भर्तृबुद्ध्या तासां किं वर्ण्यते तपः॥ (भा. १०.९०.२७) इति।

Now [let us consider the third possibility, that amorous desire for Bhagavān is sinful because scripture declares it as such]. This is not the case, however, because there is no such mention anywhere in scripture. So [because there is no inherent defect with amorous desire for Bhagavān], there is certainly no fault when such desire is combined with the feeling of being married to Bhagavān. Rather, Śrī Śuka glorifies this feeling:

Who can estimate the penance performed by these women? Regarding the preceptor of the universe as their husband, they massaged His feet and rendered all types of service to Him out of great love. (SB 10.90.27)

महानुभावमुनीनामपि तद्भावः श्रूयते। यथा श्रीमध्वाचार्यधृतं कौर्मवचनम्—

अग्निपुत्रा महात्मानस्तपसा स्त्रीत्वमापिरे।
भर्तारं च जगद्योनिं वासुदेवमजं विभुम्॥ इति।

In scripture we find mention of the development of such feelings even in great sages, as in this statement from the Kūrma Purāṇa, cited by Śrī Madhvācārya :

The sons of Agni, who were greatly realized souls, acquired female forms through austerity, and thus attained as their husband Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the birthless, all-pervading source of the entire universe.

अत एव वन्दितं "पतिपुत्रसुहृद्भ्रातृ" (नारायणव्यूहस्तवे) इत्यादिना।

Therefore, those endowed with such feelings have been honored in the Nārāyaṇa-vyūha-stava, cited earlier: “I offer obeisance again and again even to those in this world who always eagerly meditate on Bhagavān Hari as their husband, son, friend, brother, father or mother.”

अथोपपतिभावेन न च पापावहोऽसौ "यत् पत्यपत्यसुहृदामनुवृत्तिरङ्ग" (भा. १०.२९.३२) इत्यादिना ताभिरेवोत्तरितत्वात्, "गोपीनां तत्पतीनां च" (भा. १०.३३.३५) इत्यादिना श्रीशुकवचनेन च।

Amorous desire for Bhagavān as a paramour is also not sinful. The gopīs themselves addressed this point in these words:

O beloved, You are the knower of the principles of religion, and You yourself have instructed us that the natural duty of women is to serve their husbands, children and relatives. So let us fulfill this instruction by performing such service to You, the Supreme Bhagavān, because You are the most beloved, the very self and the friend of all living beings. (SB 10.29.32)

Śrī Śukadeva also confirmed the same:

That supreme witness, who dwells within the hearts of the gopīs, their husbands and all living beings, has appeared in human-like form just for the sake of play. (SB 10.33.35)

"न पारयेऽहं निरवद्यसंयुजां स्वसाधुकृत्यं विबुधायुषापि वः" (भा. १०.३२.२२) इत्यत्र "निरवद्यसंयुजामि"त्यनेन स्वयं श्रीभगवता च।

Even Bhagavān Kṛṣṇa has pointed out the faultless nature of the gopīs’ amorous love by using the words “spotless union” in this verse:

My beloved gopīs, your union with Me is completely pure and faultless. Even with the lifespan of Brahmā, I cannot repay you, who have completely cut asunder the stringent bonds of household life just to serve Me. So you will have to be satisfied by accepting the auspiciousness of your own activities as repayment. (SB 10.32.22)

तादृशानामन्येषामपि तद्भावो दृश्यते। यथा पाद्मोत्तरखण्डवचनम्—

पुरा महर्षयः सर्वे दण्डकारण्यवासिनः।
दृष्ट्वा रामं हरिं तत्र भोक्तुमैच्छत् सुविग्रहम्॥
ते सर्वे स्त्रीत्वमापन्नाः समुद्भूतास्तु गोकुले।
हरिं सम्प्राप्य कामेन ततो मुक्ता भवार्णवात्॥ (प.पु. ६.२४५.१६४) इति।

Like the gopīs, others have also attained this type of relation with Bhagavān, as pointed out in the Uttara-khaṇḍa of the Padma Purāṇa (345.164-165):

Previously all the great sages residing in the Daṇḍaka forest saw Bhagavān Hari in His form as Rāma when He visited their hermitages. This vision awakened in them the desire to enjoy with Him, whose form is most enchanting. Attaining female forms, all of them were born in Gokula. Through their amorous desire, they attained Bhagavān Hari and were delivered from the ocean of birth and death.

अतः पुरुषेष्वपि स्त्रीभावेनोद्भवाद्भगवद्विषयत्वान्न प्राकृतकामदेवोद्भावितः प्राकृतः कामोऽसौ, किन्तु "साक्षान् मन्मथमन्मथः" (भा. १०.३२.२) इति श्रवणादागमादौ तस्य कामत्वेनोपासनाच्च भगवदेकोद्भावितोऽप्राकृत एवासौ काम इति ज्ञेयम्। श्रीमदुद्धवादीनां परमभक्तानामपि च तच्छ्लाघा श्रूयते—"एताः परं तनुभृतो भुवि गोपवध्वः" (भा. १०.४७.५१) इत्यादौ।

Therefore, because this amorous passion of a woman for her paramour appears even in men and because it is directed towards the Supreme Bhagavān, it is not material passion incited by the material Cupid. Rather, it is completely spiritual because it is aroused only by Bhagavān, who is worshiped in the Āgamas as the transcendental Cupid and who is described by Śuka as the subduer of cupid: “Śrī Kṛṣṇa is the Cupid who bewilders the mind even of Cupid himself.” (SB 10.32.2)

Even great devotees like Uddhava have praised this type of amorous desire:

Among all the embodied beings on earth, these cowherd women stand supreme, because they have exclusive, unparalleled love for Govinda, the Soul of all living beings, which is coveted by those who aspire for liberation, by those who are already liberated, and by us, the servants of Bhagavān. Of what value then are the three births of a brāhmaṇa to one who has awakened a taste for the stories of the unlimited Bhagavān? (SB 10.47.58)

Commentary by Satyanarayana Dasa Babaji

The possibility that kāma is sinful because it is so stated in the scripture is also not true because there are no statements to this effect. In this way Śrī Jīva Gosvāmī shows that kāma is not sinful by its very nature.

The next option is that kāma is sinful in considering Kṛṣṇa as one’s husband. Śrī Jīva Prabhu says that far from being sinful, such a relation has been much praised by sages like Śukadeva. According to the Kurma Purāṇa, the sons of Agni were saintly by nature yet they performed austerities to becomes Kṛṣṇa’s wives in their next birth. If such a relation were sinful then they would not have desired it.



320.4 Even the Vedas personified sought the parakīya mood

किं बहुना, श्रुतीनामपि तद्भावो बृहद्वामने प्रसिद्धः, यतस्तत्र श्रुतयोऽपि नित्यसिद्धगोपिकाभावाभिलाषिण्यस्तद्रूपेणैव तद्गणान्तःपातिन्यो बभूवुरिति प्रसिद्धिः।

What further proof is required? It is well-known from the Bṛhad Vāmana Purāṇa that even the Vedas personified acquired the mood of amorous love for Śrī Kṛṣṇa as a paramour as it is there described that they, coveting the bhāva of the nitya-siddhā gopīs, acquired gopī forms and were ultimately included within their group.

एतत् प्रसिद्धिसूचकमेवैतदुक्त ताभिरेव (भा. १०.८७.२३) —

निभृतमरुन्मनोऽक्षदृढयोगयुजो हृदि यन्
मुनय उपासते तदरयोऽपि ययुः स्मरणात्।
स्त्रिय उरगेन्द्रभोगभुजदण्डविषक्तधियो
वयमपि ते समाः समदृशोऽङ्घ्रिसरोजसुधाः॥ इति।

The Śrutis themselves hint at this celebrated fact in these words:

By thinking of You, Your enemies realized the same truth that the sages worship within their hearts after controlling their breath, mind, and senses and rigidly practicing yoga. The [cowherd] women, whose minds are drawn to Your sleek, serpentine arms, and we, who have the same vision as they, are equal [to them] in attaining the nectar of Your lotus feet. (SB 10.87.23)

विस्पष्टश्चायमर्थः—यद्ब्रह्माख्यं तत्त्वं शास्त्रदृष्ट्या प्रयासबाहुल्येन मुनय उपासते, तदरयोऽपि यस्य स्मरणात् तदुपासनं विनैव ययुः। तथा स्त्रियः श्रीगोपसुभ्रुवस्ते तव श्रीनन्दनन्दनरूपस्य उरुगेन्द्रदेहतुल्यौ यौ भुजदण्डौ तव विषक्तधियः सत्यस्तवैव अङ्घ्रिसरोजसुधास्तदीयस्पर्शविशेषजातिप्रेममाधुर्याणि ययुः। वयं श्रुतयोऽपि समदृशस्तत्तुल्यभावाः सत्यः समास्तादृशगोपिकात्वप्राप्त्या तत्साम्यमाप्तास्ता एवाङ्घ्रिसरोजसुधां यातवत्य इत्यर्थः।

The clear meaning of this verse is as follows: The Absolute Reality, known as Brahman, which the sages worship with tremendous effort guided by scriptural vision, was attained even by the enemies of Bhagavān simply through remembrance, without any such exertion of worship. Similarly, the beautifully-browed cowherd women attained the nectar of Kṛṣṇa’s lotus feet, simply because their minds were drawn to the sleek, serpentine arms of the son of Nanda Mahārāja. In other words, they tasted the particular kind of sweetness of love roused by contact with His feet. The phrase “having the same vision” (sama-dṛśaḥ) means that the Śrutis were endowed with the same bhāva as the gopīs. The word "equal" (samāḥ) means that the Śrutis acquired gopī forms and thus attained equality with them, that is to say, they also obtained the nectar of Kṛṣṇa’s lotus feet.

अर्थवशाद्विभक्तिविपरिणामः। अङ्घ्रीति सादरोक्तिः।

The case has changed to fit the meaning.

[The verb "to attain" (yayuḥ, “[the enemies] attained,”) is to be carried over into the second half of the verse, but there it would have to change ending from the third to the second person plural in accordance with the changed subject, from "enemies" to the Śrutis, who speak the verse (i.e., yayima.]

The word “foot” (aṅghri) is used as an indication of respect.
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अत्र तदरयोऽपि ययुः स्मरणादित्यनेन भावमार्गस्य झटित्यर्थसाधनत्वं दर्शितम्। समदृश इत्यनेन रागानुगाया एव तत्र साधकतमत्वं व्यञ्जितम्। अन्यथा सर्वसाधनसाध्यविदुष्यः श्रुतयोऽन्यत्रैव प्रवर्तेरन्।

By statinig that even the enemies of Bhagavān attained that truth through remembrance, it is shown that the goal is quickly attained on the path of emotion (bhāva). “Having the same vision [as that of the gopīs]” (sama-dṛṣaḥ) indicates that rāgānugā is the best process. Otherwise, the Śrutis, who are well-acquainted with all the different paths and their goals, would certainly have adopted a different one.

तथा स्मरणपरयुग्मद्वयेऽस्मिन् स्वस्वयुग्मे प्रथमस्य मुख्यत्वं द्वितीयस्य गौणत्वं दर्शितम्। उभयत्राप्यपिशब्दसाहित्येनोत्तरत्र पाठादेकार्थताप्राप्तेः। अतः स्त्रिय इति नित्याः श्रीगोपिका एव ता ज्ञेयाः। तथैव श्रुतिभिरिति श्रीकृष्णनित्यधाम्नि ता दृष्टा इति बृहद्वामन एव प्रसिद्धम्।

This verse contains two sets of two individuals, all of whom are absorbed in remembrance. In the first, the sages are primary and the enemies secondary, whereas in the second set, the gopīs are primary and the Śrutis secondary. This is understood because in the first set the word api, “also,” is used in connection with the enemies, and in the second set the same word is used with the Śrutis. The word api here shows that the secondary group of individuals is being equated with the primary group. So the word “women” (striyaḥ) refers to the eternal gopīs. The Śrutis also saw the gopīs in this way in the eternal abode of Bhagavān Kṛṣṇa, as described in the Bṛhad Vāmana Purāṇa.

तदेवं साधु व्याख्यातं कामाद्द्वेषात् इत्यादौ तदघं हित्वा इत्यत्र तेषु मध्ये द्वेषभययोर्यदघमित्यादि॥

Therefore, it was appropriately concluded that only enmity and fear are to be given up amongst the different attitudes of absorption in Bhagavān mentioned in SB 7.1.29, cited at the beginning of this Anuccheda.



Commentary by Satyanarayana Dasa Babaji

The third option is the relation of paramour. This relation is also not sinful. It has been praised by great personalities like Uddhava, Śukadeva, and even by Kṛṣṇa Himself. According Padma Purāṇa, Uttara-khaṇḍa (245.164,165) when Bhagavān Rāma was in exile and arrived at Daṇḍakāraṇya, the sages doing tapasyā in the forest became enamored by His beauty. He reminded them of Kṛṣṇa on whom they were meditating. They became eager to have female forms and have a loving relation with Kṛṣṇa. Because of this desire they were born as gopīs during Kṛṣṇa’s descent on earth. They attained Kṛṣṇa because of kāma, hariṁ samprāpya kāmena (PP 6.245.165). Therefore, their kāma cannot be sinful.

Hearing these statements from Śiva, Pārvatī also raised a doubt about the relation between the gopīs and Kṛṣṇa. To her, this relation appeared immoral because the gopīs were the cowherd men's wives, and not Kṛṣṇa's. Śiva replied that Kṛṣṇa is the natural husband and master of everyone’s ātmā, naisargikasya bhartṛtvād ātmeśatvāj jagat-pateḥ (PP 6.245.176). The kāma of the gopīs towards Kṛṣṇa is not material but spiritual. In other words it is prema. Therefore, even the Vedas personified desired to have a relation like that of the gopīs, and indeed attained it. This is understood from their prayers found in Bhāgavata Purāṇa (10.87.23) as well as from a story found in Bṛḥad Vāmana Purāṇa.

In this way Śrī Jīva Gosvāmī refutes the idea that kāma for Kṛṣṇa is sinful.


Comments

Parikshit said…
Can a man attain Bhagāvan as his wife? If that is possible, I would ne delighted. Put differently, can a man attain Rādhā as his lover?

Dear Jagadananda Das,

In relation to your dialogue at 11:36:

https://youtu.be/l1MHw3YVGqo?t=706

The word आरोप (ā-ropa) “superimposition,” the true sense of this word may be found from its origin in Latin super (“above, on top, over; upwards”) + imposition from Latin imponō +‎ -tiō (“to place upon”):

“to place upon above.”

http://www.sanskrita.org/scans/visor.html?scan=151.gif

The word ā-roha (on the same page of Monier-Williams) reinforces this translation (in its true yogic sense):

One who mounts or ascends, a rider (on a horse etc.), one who is seated in a carriage; ascent, rising, creeping up, mounting; elevation, elevated place, altitude; a heap, mountain; increase.

http://www.sanskrita.org/scans/visor.html?scan=151.gif
Jagadananda said…
With regards to the question of whether a man can attain God as his wife. At least in our parampara there is no example of such. I have heard that some Sufi sects have at least a mood something like that. There was also a devotee in Hawaii who believed that since Radha is supreme and Krishna is her devotee that we should follow Krishna and be lovers of Radha in the material reflection.

All these ideas are possible, since everything is possible in the Lord. But due to our lesser intelligence we follow the mood of our Guru varga in a spirit of simplicity. They have glorified the feminine mood of service and taken that as the ideal. Ego and enjoyment, kartr̥-bhoktr̥-buddhi, are endemic to the masculine spirit. There is certainly a mystery there, but we purify our mind and body through bhajan and tapasya and things become clarified. What can we understand in our conditioned state? The intelligence is possessed by kāma and so deceives us at every turn unless we take shelter in the Guru.

indriyāṇi mano buddhir asyādhiṣṭhānam ucyate |
etair vimohayaty eṣa jñānam āvṛtya dehinam ||3.40||

Jagadananda said…
With regards to āropa, thank you MN for your research. I did some articles way back in the beginning of the blog discussing āropa and comparing it to ahaṅgrahopāsanā and adhyāsa, and their relation to the rāgānugā and sahajiyā practices.

Āropa is particularly important in Sahajiya sadhana and is condemned by the orthodoxy, and yet they deny that to think of oneself as a mañjarī is āropa. I was never fully satisfied with that series of articles and hope to revisit it one day when I have a little more clarity and more of my backlog of unfinished projects is cleared away.

Jai Radhe.

BTW, the new videos I am making are being done with the camera and microphone that you so kindly sent me many years ago, so eternal gratitude flows from my heart to yours. You have been my most consistent reader and comment giver for many years now. I thank you for your continued support. Jai Radhe.
Parikshit said…
Thank you Babaji for answering.
Anonymous said…

आरोप (ā-ropa) → आ (ā) + रोप (ropa)

“to rise (up, moving upwards out of (the body), grow(ing), increase(ing) (in size), spring(ing) up(wards)”

We are talking about this Jagadananda Das:

https://jagadanandadas.blogspot.com/2015/08/erotic-sculptures-on-jagannath-temple.html?showComment=1476741106219#c506768101907925784

The masculine and feminine energies are united (in divine love - prema) in (and piercing above) the bridal chamber of the skull.

Notes

आरोप ā-ropa:

http://www.sanskrita.org/scans/visor.html?scan=151.gif

आ (ā) see 4. (“as a prefix to verbs, especially of motion, and their derivatives) near, near to, towards; up to; out of”:

http://www.sanskrita.org/scans/visor.html?scan=126.gif

रोप (ropa) see 2. (√ 1. ruh ):

http://www.sanskrita.org/scans/visor.html?scan=889.gif

रोप 2. Ropa, m. (fr. Caus. of √ 1. ruh) the act of raising, setting up, planting, fixing in etc., MBh.; an arrow, Śiś.; Naish.; n. a fissure, hole.

√ रुह् (ruh):

http://www.sanskrita.org/scans/visor.html?scan=885.gif

To ascend, mount, climb cf. RV. cf. AV. cf. Br. cf. ŚrS.

to reach to, attain ( a desire ) cf. ŚBr.

to rise, spring up, grow, develop, increase, prosper, thrive cf. RV. etc. ( with na, ' to be useless or in vain ' cf. MBh. )

to grow together or over, cicatrise, heal ( as a wound ) cf. AV. cf. Kathās. cf. Suśr. etc. : Caus. roháyati or ( later ) ropayati, °te ( aor. arūruhat or arūrupat Gr.

Pass. ropyate cf. MBh., aor. aropi cf. Kāv. ), to cause to ascend, raise up, elevate cf. RV. cf. AV. cf. Rājat

to place in or on, fix in, fasten to, direct towards ( with acc. or loc. ) cf. MBh. cf. Kāv. cf. Kathās

to transfer to, commit, entrust cf. Ragh. ( cf. ropita )

to put in the ground, plant, sow cf. MBh. cf. R. cf. VarBṛS.

to lay out ( a garden ) cf. MBh.

to cause to grow, increase cf. Rājat

to cause to grow over or heal cf. AV. cf. Kathās. cf. Suśr. : Desid. rúrukṣati, ā-√ ruh : Intens. roruhyate, roroḍhi Gr.
Anonymous said…

Hence the comment (2nd comment dated Wednesday, 03 April, 2019):

"the "sahajiya woman" is your own self. You must find this woman within your own self and learn how to ride her."

http://jagadanandadas.blogspot.com/2006/07/some-more-autobiographical-notes-this.html?showComment=1554292235079#c530154419173697810
Anonymous said…

Pages 155 - 161 of Obscure Religious Cults (Chapter V, The Theory of Āropa) briefly discusses the subject of Āropa (in relation to the Vaiṣṇava Sahajiya’s).

https://archive.org/details/obscurereligiouscultsshashibhushandasgupta_202003_714_g/page/n189/mode/2up

My person is currently reading it.

Notes

My own (1995) edition of Obscure Religious Cults has this from pages 133-138.

Readers may wish to acquire a nodding literary acquaintance of the penetrations of Kundalini (energy); read from page 35 onwards:

https://archive.org/details/kundalini-vigyan-rahasyam-swami-lakshman-joo
Anonymous said…

Continue reading at:

https://jagadanandadas.blogspot.com/2020/04/priti-sandarbha-1-7-goal-of-all.html?showComment=1588182196523#c3394976085485425586

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