Srila Das Goswami Prabhu’s connection with Sri Guru.

By Srila Bhakti Raksak Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj


Srila Govinda Maharaj: [Translated from Bengali:] One question is that Das Goswami Prabhu took initiation [from Yadu Nandan Acharya] …

Srila Sridhar Maharaj: By the will of God it is transferred …

Srila Govinda Maharaj: [Translated from Bengali:] Yes. He went and stayed with Rupa Goswami Prabhu, and the hankering he had and showed for Rupa Goswami he did not have for his own Gurudev. Why is this?

Srila Sridhar Maharaj: That is a complicated case. You see, Das Goswami has his first diksa [initiation] from Yadu Nandan Acharya, a grhastha, when he was a grhastha himself. This was first, but the Lord takes on different forms according to the change in the disciple to help him in different cases. Das Goswami next went to Mahaprabhu, and then Mahaprabhu handed him over to Svarup Damodar. We may take or say that Yadu Nandan Acharya was an ordinary Siksa-guru, a vartma-pradarsak [shower of the path], the starter, the canvasser, something like a rtvik, a representative. He was not the Guru proper, but the Guru’s representative came as Yadu Nandan and helped Das Goswami in the right way. Otherwise, he could not be have been attracted by the charming personality of Mahaprabhu. He then approached Mahaprabhu, and Mahaprabhu we may take as Radharani, Krishna in the garb of Radharani. So, Radharani then placed him in the charge of Svarup Damodar, who is Lalita Devi. Still, we trace that Das Goswami’s tendency is always towards Mahaprabhu. Although Mahaprabhu deputed Svarup Damodar for him, he again approached Mahaprabhu and said, “I can’t understand why You have taken me, snatched me here away from my family. Please give me some definite directions.” Then, Mahaprabhu told him something in a nutshell. “Do this and don’t do this.” And He told him, “What I don’t know, Svarup Damodar knows for certain and elaborately. So, I have rightly deputed him to train you on My behalf.” Mahaprabhu again put Das Goswami in the hands of Svarup Damodar, and then of course, he went on with his bhajan in a very stern manner. Sixteen years after that, after the disappearance of Mahaprabhu, he decided to leave, “I would like to have a glimpse of Vrndavan, and then I would prefer to try to finish my life. There is no more prospect to be seen in my future life.” But when he came to Vrndavan, he said that he found Mahaprabhu there in Rupa and Sanatan. And all his plans disappeared. He found, “Mahaprabhu is there!” Specially, he was attracted to to Sri Rupa. His internal connection of the most sympathetic chord he found with Rupa. Thereby, we are taught that, passing through so many ups and downs in the life of a sadhaka, he at last comes to Sri Rupa, and there he thinks that he has reached the desired station.

What is the Rupanuga sampradaya? Mahaprabhu named this Rupanuga sampradaya. The first disciple of Mahaprabhu is Rupa Goswami. Although Rupa Goswami took formal initiation from Sanatan Goswami, Mahaprabhu met Rupa first and Sanatan second. So, we say “Rupa Sanatan” and not “Sanatan Rupa”.

Student: Who was originally the elder of the two brothers?

Srila Sridhar Maharaj: Sanatan. But we say “Rupa Sanatan” because Rupa received recognition from Mahaprabhu first and then Sanatan did. So, “Rupa Sanatan”.

Now, what is the real meaning of Rupanuga sampradaya? You are to hear it and mark it very attentively. Madhura-rasa is the total of all rasas and the most intense of all rasas. It is all-accommodating. Twenty-four hours engagement in service to Krishna is only possible in madhura-rasa. There is the possibility of reaction, leisure, alasyam, tiredness, in all other rasas, even vatsalya-rasa. Sometimes, a mother or father may think, “I am too tired. I shall do the arrangement a little later.” But in madhura-rasa, there is no alasyam, reaction. Then, there is a difference between Rupa, a manjari, and Lalita, a sakhi. These are of course things of the very highest order. We do not have the audacity to enter into these subtle points. Still, only because this question has come to me about Raghunath Das, by divine arrangement, I am going to say what we understand: when Radha-Govinda are alone in union, the sakhis of the higher order do not approach that place, but the manjaris can go. These junior sevikas can go to perform any service necessary there. Because of their lesser age, they are allowed, and the higher friends of Radharani keep some respectable distance. So, when Radha-Govinda are alone in union, there the highest quality of rasa is to be found in Their lila, and that is approachable by the juniors, the manjaris, and not the sakhis. So, the highest attainment is to be located in Rupa, the leader of that group, that junior group who has got the special advantage of special service in that stage. So, Rupanuga. Wherever we are, we shall have to accept that that is the acme of our fulfilment, that point.

kabe sri-chaitanya more karibena daya
kabe ami paiba vaisnava-pada-chaya

[“When will Sri Chaitanya bestow His grace on me? When will I reach the shade of the Vaisnava’s feet?”]

First, we may be attracted by the highest peak of the Himalayas. Then, when approaching, we see that there are so many other beautiful peaks. So, we are attracted by Krishna in general, then from Krishna, we come to a proper Vaisnava in a proper location according to the necessity of our innate nature. In this way, Das Goswami came from Mahaprabhu to Svarup Damodar, and then with the permission of Lalita to Rupa. This point is the place of our highest attainment, and that has been shown to us by the lila of Das Goswami Prabhu.

tvam rupa-manjari sakhi prathita pure ’smin
pumsah parasya vadanam na hi pasyasiti

There are verses written by him, and he has been accepted as the Acharya of prayojan-tattva, our highest necessity. That is in his hand, in Das Goswami, the Prayojan-tattva-acharya. But the whole thing must be approached with the mood of divinity, where there is the plane of dedication and nothing of enjoyment. The spirit of pleasure, enjoyment, must not enter there. That will keep us down in this plane of mundane relativity. Divinity to the extreme reaches its zenith there in Sri Rupa Manjari.


Spoken on 14 August 1981.