VMA 1.17 : Grant me residence here until the end of this life

Sineha Bihari on Hariyail Teej. Most picture purported to be of Banke Bihari are actually this deity, since photography of the one is allowed, the other not. Sineha Bihari is a clone of Banke Bihari and his temple is also nearby.

mahā-premāmbhodher yad anupama-sāraṁ yad amalaṁ
hari-premāmbhodher madhura-madhuraṁ dvīpa-valayam|
munīndrāṇāṁ vṛndaiḥ kalita-rasa-vṛndāvanam aho
tad etad dehāntāvadhi samadhivāsaṁ diśatu me ||

Aho! May Vrindavan,
the incomparable essence of the great ocean of Prem,
the spotless archipelago of great sweetness
in the midst of that ocean of Krishna Prem,
where the great sages envisioned the supreme flavors of love,
please grant me residence here to the very end of this life. (1.17)

Commentary

The word kalita is from one of those kāmadhenu roots that can mean almost anything you want it to. I translated it as “envisioned,” but it could also mean “created.” In a sense, those who have vision create. Therefore the visionary is a poet, who envisions or creates a mental universe, which he then shares, and which then can be made a reality through the activities of the intelligence and labor. Without visionaries, what is reality?

Chaitanya Mahaprabhu sent Rupa and Sanatan to envision Vrindavan, or to create the Vrindavan that was born of his vision of an ocean of Prem. And it so happened that by the Divine Will, there were others who simultaneously had the same inspiration, Swami Haridas, Vallabhacharya, Sri Bhatta, and so many others. And it started to happen, and is still happening.

We may not really understand their vision fully. But we can intuit it by meditating on the words “prema” and “rasa” and developing our ideas from there.

I like to think that Chaitanya just set things into motion, and we have come to this line by the grace of the Holy Name. And now, 500 years on, we combine the inspiration that comes from the Holy Name and the rasik sants, we meditate on the concept of Love and attempt to further that concept in thought, word, and deed.

And although some may think that Chaitanya Mahaprabhu or the Vrindavan rasikas are irrelevant to our modern age, it is impossible for them to be irrelevant to us, because they have become a part of who we are, through connection, through association, through grace, through the Holy Name, and for some of us, through assiduous sadhana.

Just hold on to that idea: Prema is the Prayojan, Love is the goal. And I personally start the process by loving the source of that concept, the source that made Prema meaningful to me, the source that is traced through my Guru Parampara to Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.

So asking the Dham, the effulgence of the Divine Couple, to grant us residence, means the prayer to move ever forward to that ideal of Divine Love.

Previous posts

VMA 1.16 : A prayer for the siddha Vrindavan to manifest
VMA 1.15 : Rolling in the dust of Vrindavan
VMA 1.13 : Offenses to the residents of the Dham break my heart
VMA 1.12 : The Upanishads take birth as cows in Braj
VMA 1.11 : The defects we see in the Dham are not real.
VMA 1.10 : More glories of Radharani's kunj
VMA 1.9 : Radhika's cottage in the kunj
VMA 1.8 : Vrindavan contains all the Dhams
VMA 1.7 : Vrindavan includes all of Braj
VMA 1.6 : What is it to me if you cannot see Vrindavan's glories?
VMA 1.5 : Take shelter of Vrindavan with all your being
VMA 1.9 : Radhika's cottage in the kunj
VMA 1.8 : Vrindavan contains all the Dhams


Comments

Prem Prakash said…
Beautiful. This post also raises the question about the relationship of ontological truth to visionary experience. Are the visions of the saints and poets a mental phenomenon, are they self-generated? Or, are they perceptions of what actually exist in a different dimension, independent of of any human perceiver?

Your thought?

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