As we approach the end of this now lengthy series on the places where Lord Brahma is worshipped, some of our readers may wonder why we are pursuing such a detailed exploration. Have your Sun editors became absorbed in demigod worship? Will we encourage the devotees to take up worshipping Brahmadeva, asking him for boons? No, of course not. We do, however, wish to remind the reader that Lord Brahma is the transcendental father and Sampradaya Acarya of our Brahma Madhva Gaudiya Vaisnava Sampradaya. Because so little of the available documentation on his glorification and temple worship has been made available to the devotees, we began this series. Never imaging that we would uncover so many fascinating stories about the worship of our Sampradaya's Founder, we have been pleased to carry on, and we hope you have enjoyed the read.
Today, we offer a reminder of the vast importance of Lord Brahma to our Sampradaya, with this presentation of Sri Brahma-samhita. This lofty philosophical treatise was rediscovered by Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu Himself, while He was on pilgrimage in South India. Traveling along the banks of the Payasvini River in Travancore, Mahaprabhu reached the temple of Adi-kesava in Thiruvattar, Trivandrum district of Kerala. In the library there he discovered the manuscript of Sri Brahma-samhita, which is the fifth chapter of 100 chapters from the Hymns of Brahma.
In 1932, the Gaudiya Matha published an English-language version of Sri Brahma-samhita, with subsequent reprints in 1958 and later by Srila Prabhupada's BBT in 1973. These editions feature the English translation and commentary of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakur, whose erudite words stand as the Absolute introduction to Sri Brahma-samhita.
The materialistic demeanor cannot possibly stretch to the transcendental autocrat who is ever inviting the fallen conditioned souls to associate with Him through devotion or eternal serving mood. The phenomenal attractions are often found to tempt sentient beings to enjoy the variegated position which is opposed to undifferenced monism. People are so much apt to indulge in transitory speculations even when they are to educate themselves on a situation beyond their empiric area or experiencing jurisdiction. The esoteric aspect often knocks them to trace out immanence in their outward inspection of transitory and transformable things. This impulse moves them to fix the position of the immanent to an indeterminate impersonal entity, no clue of which could be discerned by moving earth and heaven through their organic senses.
The lines of this booklet will surely help such puzzled souls in their march towards the personality of the immanent lying beyond their sensuous gaze of inspection. The very first stanza of this publication will revolutionize their reserved ideas when the nomenclature of the Absolute is put before them as "Krsna." The speculative mind would show a tendency of offering some other attributive name to designate the unknown object. They will prefer to brand Him by their experience as the "creator of this universe,""the entity beyond phenomena"--far off the reference of any object of nature and void of all transformation. So they will urge that the very fountainhead should have no conceivable designation except to show a direction of the invisible, and inaudible untouchable, nonfragrant and unperceivable object. But they will not desist from contemplating on the object with their poor fund of experience. The interested enquirer will be found to hanker after the records left by erudite savants to incompatible hallucinative views of savage demonstration. In comparing the different names offered by different thoughts of mankind, a particular judge would decide in favor of some nomenclature which will suit best his limited and specific whims. The slave mentality of an individual will no doubt offer invective assertions to the rest who will be appealing to him for a revelation of his decision. To remedy this evil, the hymns of the accepted progenitor of the phenomena would do great help in taking up the question of nomenclature which is possessed of adequate power to dispel all imaginations drawn out of their experiencing the phenomena by their tentative exploitations.
The first hymn will establish the supremacy of the Absolute Truth, if His substratum is not shot by the bullets of limited time, ignorance and uncomfortable feeling, as well as by recognizing the same as an effect instead of accepting Him as the prime cause. He will be satisfied to mark that the object of their determination is the par"excellent Supreme Lord Sri Krsna who has eternally embodied Himself in His ever-presence, all-blissful, all-pervasive perfected knowledge as the very fountainhead of all prime causes of unending nonbeginning time, the supplying fosterer of all entities, viz., mundane and transcendental.
The subsequent lines will go to determine the different aspects of the Absolute, who are but emanations of the supreme fountainhead Krsna, the attractive entity of all entities. Moreover, the derivative proclamation of the nomenclature will indicate the plane of uninterrupted, unending, transcendental felicity and the nomenclature Himself is the source of the two components which go by the names of efficient and material causes. The very transcendental name "Krsna" is known as the embodiment of all the transcendental eternal rasas as well as the origin of all eclipsed conceptions of interrupted rasas found in the mentality of animated beings which are successfully depicted by litterateurs and rhetoricians for our mundane speculation.
The verses of Brahma-samhita are a full elucidation of the origination of phenomenal and noumenic conceptions. The hymns of the incarnated prime potency has dealt fully with the monotheistic speculations of different schools which are busy to give an outer cover of an esoteric concoction without any reference to the true eternal aspect of transcendental nontransformable and imperishable manifestation of the immanent. The hymns have also dealt with different partial aspects of the personality of the Absolute who is quite isolated from the conception of the enjoyers of this phenomenal world.
A very close attention and a comparative study of all prevailing thoughts and conceptions will relieve and enlighten all--be he a materialist, a downright atheist, an agnostic, a sceptic, a naturalist, a pantheist or a panantheist--busy with their knowledge of three dimensions only by their speculative exertions.
This booklet is only the fifth chapter of the Hymns of Brahma which were recorded in a hundred chapters. The Supreme Lord Sri Caitanya picked up this chapter from the temple of Adi-kesava at Tiruvattar, a village lying under the government of Travancore, for the assurance of all God-loving, and especially Krsna-loving, people in this conditioned jurisdiction. This booklet can easily be compared with another book which passes by the name of Srimad-Bhagavatam. Though it has got a reference in the pantheon of Puranas, the Bhagavatam corroborates the same idea of this Pancaratra.
The devotees should consider that these two books tend to the identical Krsna who is the fountainhead of all transcendental and mundane entities and has a manifestive exhibition of the plenary variegatedness.
Aspersions of calumniation are restricted in the limited world, whereas transcendence cannot admit such angularities being an angle of 180 degrees or void of any angular discrepancies.
The publisher is carried away to the realm of gratitude when his stores of publication are scrutinized. Thakura Bhaktivinoda has given an elucidatory purport of the conception of the most sublime fountainhead of all entities in Bengali, and one of his devout followers has rendered that into English for propagatory purpose. The purports and the translations are traced to the backgrounds of the writings of Srila Jiva Gosvami, a contemporary follower of the Supreme Lord Sri Krsna Caitanya. The emotional aspirations will find fair play in perusing the texts of this brochure by one and all who have any interest in pure theistic achievements. The materialistic inspection often goes on to say that the provincial conception of theism has made the depicting of transcendental unity into diverse face quite opposed to the ethical consideration of the limited region. But we differ from such erroneous considerations when we get a prospective view of the manifested transcendentality eliminating all historicities and allegorical enterprises. All our enjoying mood should have a different direction when we take into account the transcendental entity who has obsessed all frailties and limitations of nature. So we solicit the happier mood of the scrutinizers to pay special attention to the importance of manifestive transcendence in Krsna.
It was found necessary to publish this small book for the use of English-knowing people who are interested in the acme of transcendental truths in their manifestive phases. The theme delineated in the texts of this book is quite different from the ordinary heaps of poetical mundane literature, as they are confined to our limited aspiration of senses. The book was found in the South some four centuries ago and it is again brought into light in the very same country after a long time, just like the worshiping of the Goddess Ganges by the offering of her own water.
10th day glorifying Kalki Avatar
The last avatara among the Dasavatara is Lord Sri Kalki. It is also written that the twenty-fifth and final lila-avatara is Lord Kalki. Generally, these twenty-five avataras appear in every kalpa. That is why they are also known as kalpa-avataras. In his Dasavatara-stotra, Srila Jayadeva Gosvami prays to Lord Kalki in this way:
mleccha-nivaha-nidhane kalayasi karavalam
dhumaketum iva kim api karalam
kesava dhrita-kalki-sarira jaya jagadisa hare
(Sri Jayadeva's Dasavatara-stotra, 10th Verse)
"Lord Kesava assumes the comet-like form of Kalki with a terrible sword to annihilate the wicked barbarians. O Lord of the universe! O Lord Hari! O Lord in the form of Kalki, all glories unto You!"
Lord Kalki will appear in the home of a religious and highly gentle brahmana, Sri Vishnu Yasa, in a village named Sambhala. The Lord of the universe, Kalkideva, will possess all eight mystic perfections or siddhis such as anima (the ability to become atomically small) and others, as well as an unequalled luster. He will ride on a fast-moving steed and suppress the wicked. The swift horse on which He will ride to suppress the doers of evil will be named Devadatta. While riding on Devadatta, Kalkideva will travel all over the world at great speed, and with His sword He will annihilate countless disguised plunderers and mlecchas who are a burden to the earth. After this, the hearts of all people will become sanctified by the touch of the air carrying the fragrance of sandalwood and other sacred cosmetics decorating Kalkideva. Again, by the desire of Lord Vasudeva, a large number of progeny will take birth. By the appearance of Supreme Lord Kalki, people endowed with the quality of goodness will take birth at the beginning of Satya-yuga.
yada yada hi dharmasya glanir bhavati bharata
abhyutthanam adharmasya tadatmanam srijamy aham
paritranaya sadhunam vinasaya ca dushkritam
dharma-samsthapanarthaya sambhavami yuge yuge
"Whenever there is a decline of dharma (righteousness) and a prevalence of adharma (unrighteousness), the Supreme Lord appears, millennium after millennium, to deliver the pious and annihilate the dishonest, as well as to re-establish dharma."
In Kali-yuga, when there is a terrible and extensive rise of irreligion leading to an ever-increasing defilement of society, the demigods will take shelter of Lord Vishnu. Understanding the desires of the demigods, the Lord will perform the pastime of appearing in the previously described village of Sambhala and will accept Vishnu Yasa and his wife Sumati as His parents. He will appear on the 12th day of the waxing moon in the month of Vaisakha (April-May). Reaching adulthood, He will annihilate all the mlecchas of the dwelling place of Buddhists, as well as Kuthodevi, the wife of the Rakshasas of Kalkanja, and all other mlecchas. He will even destroy Kali and re-establish dharma.
It has also been said that Lord Kalki will obtain the Vedic knowledge from Parasurama and the military science from Lord Siva. The horse on which He will ride while destroying the wicked will be white in colour. In the 1st Canto of Srimad-Bhagavatam, He has been described as the twenty-second avatara.
athasau yuga-sandhyayam dasyu-prayeshu rajasu
janita vishnu-yasaso namna kalkir jagat-patih
"Thereafter, at the conjunction of the two yugas, when the rulers of the earth have degenerated into plunderers, the Lord of the creation, Jagannatha-Vishnu, will appear as the son of Vishnu Yasa and be renowned by the name 'Kalki'."
Supreme Lord Kalkideva saves the living beings from the evil influence of Kali-yuga and re-establishes them in dharma. Such is described in the 6th Canto of Srimad-Bhagavatam:
dvaipayano bhagavan aprabodhad buddhas tu pashanda-gana-pramadat
kalkih kaleh kala-malat prapatu dharmavanayoru-kritavatarah
"May Supreme Lord Vyasadeva protect me from all kinds of ignorance. May Lord Buddha protect me from activities opposed to the Vedic principles as well as laziness leading to bewilderment and forgetfulness of the Vedic principles of knowledge and ritualistic actions. May Kalkideva, who is considered the supreme descent of Godhead to protect righteousness, protect me from the dirt of the age of Kali."
Srila Narahari Thakura has written in his �Bhakti-ratnakara� that those who call themselves God are the disciples of Kali. Their punisher is Lord Kalkideva:
se papishtha apanara bolaya 'gopala'
ataeva tare sabe bolaye 'siyala'keha kahe - maha amangala e sabara
e saba mlecchera sasta kalki avatara
"He who declares himself to be God is extremely sinful. All call him a jackal or a cheat. Such dreadful ominous barbarians will be punished by Kalki-avatara."
Sri Krishna Dvaipayana Vedavyasa Muni describes the holy biography and glories of Kalkideva in detail in his Kalki Purana:
sambhale vishnu yasaso
sumatyam matari vibho
bhavanto bandhava devah
(Kalki Purana 2.4-5)
"Sri Hari said to the lotus-born Brahma, At your request, I shall take birth on the earth in the home of the brahmana, Vishnu Yasa, from the womb of his wife, Sumati. I shall destroy Kali with My four brothers. O demigods! You should also take birth on your behalf and establish friendly relations with Me for the benefit of the inhabitants of heaven."
Kamala Devi (Padma), the beloved of Lord Kalki, will appear from the womb of Kaumudi, the wife of Brihadratha, the king of Simhala. Kalkideva will be four-armed at first, but will later assume a two-armed form at the request of Brahma. Rama, Parasurama, Kripa, Vyasa and Asvatthama will assume the forms of mendicants (bhikshu-deha) to see Kalkideva. Lord Kalki, riding on His horse with sword in hand, will appear in the city of Bhallata with His army. There will be a great battle with the powerful glorious King Sasidhvaja, who will be a devotee of Lord Krishna. Susanta, the wife of Sasidhvaja, will also be a devotee of Lord Hari. In this terrible battle between Kalki and Sasidhvaja, a large number of infantry, cavalry and elephantry will be destroyed. After offering prayers to Kalki, when the devotee Sasidhvaja attacks Supreme Lord Kalki according to the regulations of war, Lord Kalki will faint. Pretending to have fainted, Lord Kalkideva will come with Sasidhvaja to his palace. There, He will accept the worship of Sasidhvaja and his devoted wife, Susanta. At that time, Dharma and Krita-yuga (Satya-yuga) will also arrive there. Due to the repeated and lengthy prayers of Susanta, Lord Kalki will be pleased. He will give up His swoon and stand up like a warrior. At that time, Susanta will be at His front, Krita-yuga at His left side, Dharma at His right side and the great devotee king, Sasidhvaja, at his back.
King Sasidhvaja will call his sons and according to the desire of his wife, he will surrender his daughter Rama to the lotus feet of Lord Kalkideva. Kalki Purana describes how King Sasidhvaja became a devotee.
Sasidhvaja and his wife had formerly been born as foul smelling flesh-eating eagles. A hunter had trapped them in a net and brought them to the bank of the River Ganga. There he pulverised their heads by striking them on a black stone found in the river Gandaki (which are representations of Vishnu called salagrama sila) and killed them. Since they had departed from their bodies on a holy salagrama-sila marked with a cakra on the bank of the Ganga, they assumed four-armed forms and went to Vaikuntha-dhama. After living there for one hundred yugas they came to the abode of Brahma, where they lived for five hundred yugas and then lived four hundred years in paradise. After this, they attained human births as devotees of Lord Hari.
A detailed description of Kalkideva along with the gist of subjects and incidents has been described in Kalki Purana as follows:
The conversation between Suka and Markandeya Muni; a description of the Adharma dynasty; a description of Kali; the journey of the earth in the form of a cow along with the demigods to the abode of Brahma; the birth of Hari in the home of Vishnu Yasa according to the promise of Brahma; the birth of four brothers as partial manifestations of Sri Hari from the womb of Sumati in Sambhala village; the conversation between father and son; Kalki accepts the sacred thread; the father and son live together; Kalki learns the Vedas and military science; the meeting with Lord Siva; Kalki prays to, and receives boons from Lord Siva; Kalki obtains the company of Sukadeva; Kalki returns to Sambhala village and describes the boons of Lord Siva to His relatives; at the request of King Visakhayupa, Kalki describes His own form; the glories of the brahmanas; the arrival of Suka; the conversation between Kalki and Suka; Suka describes Simhala; by the boon of Hara-Mahadeva, the kings become women just by seeing Padma at her svayamvara; Padma's sorrow; Kalki's attempt at marriage; Suka is motivated to be a messenger; the mutual introduction of Suka with Padma; the method of worship of Hari; meditation on Lord Hari from His feet to His face; Padma gives her ornaments to Suka; Suka again meets with Kalki; Kalki sets off to marry Padma; the meeting with Padma by the deception of water-sports and then marriage; the kings regain their masculinity just by seeing Kalki; the arrival of Ananta; Ananta's discussion with the kings in the assembly; a description of Ananta's birth as a eunuch; prayers to Lord Siva; Ananta's father passes away seeing maya in Vishnu-kshetra; the biography of Ananta; Ananta's knowledge, renunciation and so on; the departure of the kings; Kalki goes to Sambhala with Padma; Visvakarma builds a city in Sambhala; Kalki, together with Padma, His relatives and His armies, resides in the house built by Visvakarma; suppression of the Buddhists; the Buddhist women travel to the battlefield; the presence of the sages named Balakhilya; self-dedication; the killing of the Rakshasi Kuthodevi along with her sons; the sages meet with Kalki in Haridvara; a description of the lunar and solar dynasties; the holy life of Lord Rama; the meeting with Maru and Devapi who had come for battle; the killing of the violent Kokavikoka; Kalki goes to Bhallata city; the battle with Sayakarna and others; Kalki's battle with King Sasidhvaja; the devotion of Susanta; Kalki brings Dharma and Krita-yuga from the battlefield; Susanta prays to Kalki; Kalki's marriage to Rama; a description of Sasidhvaja's previous life in the assembly; the reason for his becoming old; Sasidhvaja obtains liberation from Kalki; deliverance of the visha-kanya; coronation of the kings; prayers by maya; various sacrifices in Sambhala village; Vishnu Yasa is liberated by Narada; the nature of Krita-yuga and dharma; the vow undertaken by Rukmini; Kalki's wanderings; the birth of Kalki's sons and grandsons; the presence of demigods and Gandharvas in Sambhala village and after this, the departure of Kalki to Vaikuntha....See more
भक्त्या त्वनन्यया शक्य अहमेवंविधोSर्जुन | ज्ञातुं द्रष्टुं च तत्त्वेन प्रवेष्टुं च परन्तप || ५४ ||
My dear Arjuna, only by undivided devotional service can I be understood as I am, standing before you, and can thus be seen directly. Only in this way can you enter into the mysteries of My understanding.
Kṛṣṇa can be understood only by the process of undivided devotional service. He explicitly explains this in this verse so unauthorized commentators, who try to understand Bhagavad-gītā by the speculative process, will know that they are simply wasting their time. No one can understand Kṛṣṇa or how He came from parents in a four-handed form and at once changed Himself into a two-handed form. It is clearly stated here that no one can see Him. Those who, however, are very experienced students of Vedic literature can learn about Him from the Vedic literature in so many ways. There are so many rules and regulations, and if one at all wants to understand Kṛṣṇa, he must follow the regulative principles described in the authoritative literature. One can perform penance in accordance with those principles. As far as charity is concerned, it is plain that charity should be given to the devotees of Kṛṣṇa who are engaged in His devotional service to spread the Kṛṣṇa philosophy or Kṛṣṇa consciousness throughout the world. Kṛṣṇa consciousness is a benediction to humanity. Lord Caitanya was appreciated by Rūpa Gosvāmī as the most munificent man of charity because love of Kṛṣṇa, which is very difficult to achieve, was distributed freely by Him. And if one worships as prescribed in the temple (in the temples in India there is always some statue, usually of Viṣṇu or Kṛṣṇa), that is a chance to progress. For the beginners in devotional service to the Lord, temple worship is very essential, and this is confirmed in the Vedic literature.
One who has unflinching devotion for the Supreme Lord and is directed by the spiritual master can see the Supreme Personality of Godhead by revelation. For one who does not take personal training under the guidance of a bona fide spiritual master, it is impossible to even begin to understand Kṛṣṇa. The word tu is specifically used here to indicate that no other process can be used, can be recommended, or can be successful in understanding Kṛṣṇa.
The personal forms of Kṛṣṇa, the two-handed form and the four-handed, are completely different from the temporary universal form shown to Arjuna. The four-handed form is Nārāyaṇa, and the two-handed form is Kṛṣṇa; they are eternal and transcendental, whereas the universal form exhibited to Arjuna is temporary. The very word sudurdarśam, meaning difficult to see, suggests that no one saw that universal form. It also suggests that amongst the devotees there was no necessity of showing it. That form was exhibited by Kṛṣṇa at the request of Arjuna because in the future, when one represents himself as an incarnation of God, people can ask to see his universal form.
Kṛṣṇa changes from the universal form to the four-handed form of Nārāyaṇa and then to His own natural form of two hands. This indicates that the four-handed forms and other forms mentioned in Vedic literature are all emanations of the original two-handed Kṛṣṇa. He is the origin of all emanations. Kṛṣṇa is distinct even from these forms, not to speak of the impersonal conception. As far as the four-handed forms of Kṛṣṇa are concerned, it is stated clearly that even the most identical four-handed form of Kṛṣṇa (which is known as Mahā-Viṣṇu, who is lying on the cosmic ocean and from whose breathing so many innumerable universes are passing out and entering) is also an expansion of the Supreme Lord. Therefore one should conclusively worship the personal form of Kṛṣṇa as the Supreme Personality of Godhead who is eternity, bliss and knowledge. He is the source of all forms of Viṣṇu, He is the source of all forms of incarnation, and He is the original Supreme Personality, as confirmed in Bhagavad-gītā.
In the Vedic literature it is stated that the Supreme Absolute Truth is a person. His name is Kṛṣṇa, and He sometimes descends on this earth. Similarly, in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam there is a description of all kinds of incarnations of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and there it is said that Kṛṣṇa is not an incarnation of God but is the original Supreme Personality of Godhead Himself. Kṛṣṇas tu bhagavān svayam. Similarly, in Bhagavad-gītā the Lord says, mattaḥ parataram nānyāt: "There is nothing superior to My form as the Personality of Godhead Kṛṣṇa." He also says elsewhere in Bhagavad-gītā, aham ādir hi devānām: "I am the origin of all the demigods." And after understanding Bhagavad-gītā from Kṛṣṇa, Arjuna also confirms this in the following words: paraṁ brahma paraṁ dhāma pavitraṁ paramaṁ bhavān: "I now fully understand that You are the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the Absolute Truth, and that You are the refuge of everything." Therefore the universal form which Kṛṣṇa showed to Arjuna is not the original form of God. The original is the Kṛṣṇa form. The universal form, with its thousands and thousands of heads and hands, is manifest just to draw the attention of those who have no love for God. It is not God's original form.
The universal form is not attractive for pure devotees, who are in love with the Lord in different transcendental relationships. The Supreme Godhead exchanges transcendental love in His original form of Kṛṣṇa. Therefore to Arjuna, who was so intimately related with Kṛṣṇa in friendship, this form of the universal manifestation was not pleasing; rather, it was fearful. Arjuna, who is a constant companion of Kṛṣṇa's, must have had transcendental eyes; he was not an ordinary man. Therefore he was not captivated by the universal form. This form may seem wonderful to persons who are involved in elevating themselves by fruitive activities, but to persons who are engaged in devotional service, the two-handed form of Kṛṣṇa is the most dear....See more