A Village Encounter

A passage from the life of Lord Chaitanya

A Village Encounter-Lord Chaitanya’s Visit to Vrindavana

Lord Chaitanya’s Visit to Vrindavana

Lord Chaitanya came to Vrindavan on the day of Karitika Purnima in the year 1515. For two months he toured various places of Vraja and excavated Shyam Kunda and Radha Kunda. Eventually, Lord Chaitanya was living at Akrura Ghata in Vrindavana and daily visiting holy spots in the area.One day His servant Balabhadra Bhattacharya was exasperated with endless invitations for Lord Chaitanya from brahmanas to visit Mathura and requested Lord Chaitanya to move to Prayaga on the occasion of Magha Mela held during Makara Sankranti for bathing in the Ganga on the full moon day. Lord Chaintanya was ecstatic staying in Vrindavana, but felt indebted to the brahmana who had faithfully served Him, so He agreed. The Lord experienced a different kind of ecstasy at the prospect of leaving Vrindavana. The following morning they departed for Prayaga accompanied by Krishnadasa, a Rajputa Kshatriya who had become Sri Chaitanya’s disciple, a Sanodiya brahmana who was a disciple of Madhavendra Puriand Balabhadra Bhattacharya’s assistant.

Lord Chaitanya becomes ecstatic

As they walked along the banks of the Ganga, Lord Chaitanya noticed that His companions were fatigued. So, He suggested that they all take rest underneath the shade of a tree. There were many cows grazing by the tree. Lord Chaitanya was happy seeing them. Suddenly a cowherd began to play his flute. Lord Chaitanya burst into ecstatic transformations. He fell on the ground, foam emanating from His mouth, His body shuddering. He became unconscious and stopped breathing.

Lord Chaitanya’s state of Ecstasy in Vrindavana

Anything that reminded Him of Krishna aroused intense ecstatic emotions in the Lord. In Vrindavana, the Lord’s ecstasy had greatly intensified. Previously, as He was approaching Vrindavana on the way from Kashi, as soon has He would see the Yamuna, He would plunge into the river and fall unconscious. Balabhadra Bhattacharya retrieved Him from the river in that condition on numerous occasions. As they walked through the forests of Vraja the Lord was merged in an ocean of unfathomable ecstasy. Observing the graceful blue neck of a peacock He fainted in ecstatic remembrance of Krishna. When Balabhadra Bhattacharya brought Him to awareness by chanting Hare Krishna in His ear, He woke up and rolled on the ground, injuring Himself by the thorns. Then he sprang up singing and dancing. Such spiritual ecstasy cannot be understood or described. The author of Chaitanya Charitamrita, Srila Krishnadasa Kaviraja Goswami says that when Lord Anantha with His innumerable hoods was unable to sufficiently glorify the ecstasy of Lord Chaitanya, what would then be the capacity of a tiny soul. By hearing these descriptions one can only get an indication of the intense devotional bliss of Lord Chaitanya.

A Village Encounter-Balabhadra Bhattacharya submitted his prayer before Lord Chaitanya

The Village Encounter

As Sri Chaitayna Mahaprabhu lay still on the ground, tenPathana soldiers appeared on the scene on their horses. Seeing the Lord in that condition, they conferred among themselves and concluded that the four persons accompanying the sannyasi had killed him for his gold by poisoning him. They decided to arrest the four of them.

Balabhadra Bhattacharya and his assistant trembled but the Sanodiya Brahmana and Krishnadasa, the Rajaputa were brave. While the Sanodiya Brahmana tried to reason with them, the Rajputa disciple threatened the Pathana soldiers with counterattack from his own army. He accused them of being real rogues for falsely implicating the brahmanas. The Pathana soldiers were slightly intimidated. Then Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu regained consciousness. The Lord arose and jumped high with raised arms and began loudly chanting and dancing. The Pathana soldiers felt their hearts struck by thunderbolts. Out of fear they released all the companions of Lord Chaitanya. The Lord never saw His associates under arrest.

Lord Chaitanya Transforms the Pathanas

The Pathana soldiers offered their respects to Lord Chaitanya and accused His companions of wrong doing.The Lord clarified that the four men were His associates who helped Him during epileptic fits like the one he just underwent. Then one of the Pathanas who was a saintly person and scholar came forward and spoke about the impersonal conclusions of Koran. Lord Chaitanya contested his views and gave numerous counter arguments. Finally the scholar was stunned, unable to counter the Lord.

Then Lord Chaitanya told him that even though the Koran established Impersonalism but in the end refuted impersonal ideas in favour of a personal God. He said that ultimately Koran establishes God’s as a person with blackish bodily complexion. He said Koran taught that God was one and that He was a Person, the Supreme Absolute Truth, all pervading, all knowing and the origin of everything. The Lord concluded saying in the Koran it was taught that without devotional service to the Supreme Being, no one could be liberated from material bondage and love at His lotus feet was the ultimate goal of life. The five daily prayers enjoined in Islam were ample proof of the devotional decisions of Islam. The Lord mentioned that while fruitive activity, speculative knowledge and mystic power were discussed in Koran, but all these were ultimately refuted in favour of devotional service to God. When the Lord asked for the Muslim scholar’s opinion, he admitted that what the Lord had spoken was indeed mentioned in the Koran, but Muslim scholars could not understand or accept it.

The saintly Muslim bowed down before the Lord and said his pride as a scholar had been crushed and his tongue was now incessantly chanting Hare Krishna! He prayed to the Lord to instruct him about the ultimate goal of life and the means to attain it. The Lord told the saintly muslim to arise and informed him that by chanting Hare Krishna, he had destroyed the sinful reactions of millions of lives and he was now pure. He made all the Pathan soldiers chant Hare Krishna. He indirectly initiated the saintly muslim by naming him Ramadasa. One of the Pathana was the son of the king named Vijuli Khan. He fell at the feet of the Lord and the Lord placed His foot on his head. Lord Chaitanya then left that place for Prayaga.

All these Pathanas became mendicants and preached the glories of Lord Chaitanya all over the country. They became famous as the Pathana Vaishnavas. Vijuli Khan became a very advanced and celebrated devotee of Lord Chaitanya.

A Village Encounter-lilas

The Munificence of Lord Chaitanya

These are the inconceivable glories of Lord Chaitanya as He enacted His transcendental pastime of inaugurating the Sankirtana movement and establishing love of Krishna as the supreme life principle for the benefit of the people of the whole world. That His preaching transformed the hearts of even those who were vehemently opposed to the Vedic culture is powerful illustration of Lord Chaitanya’s supreme munificence toward the fallen souls of this degraded age.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *