Sri Bhugarbha Goswami Tirobhava Tithi [disappearance day]
Sri Kasisvara Pandita Tirobhava Tithi [disappearance day]
Wednesday, November 21, 2018 [Mayapura, West Bengal, India time]
Srila Prabhupada explains the exalted position of Sri Bhugarbha Goswami and Sri Kasisvara Goswami
compiled by Yasoda nandana dasa
Bhugarbha Goswami’s samadhi (shrine) in the courtyard of the Radha-Damodara temple in Vrindavan
Kasisvara Pandit’s Deity of Gaura-Govinda
Kasisvara Pandita’s Deity of Gaura-Govinda.
paṇḍita-gosāñira śiṣya–bhugarbha gosāñi
gaura-kathā vinā āra mukhe anya nāi
paṇḍita-gosāñira—of Paṇḍita Gosāñi (Gadādhara Paṇḍita); śiṣya—disciple; bhugarbha gosāñi—of the name Bhugarbha Gosāñi; gaura-kathā—topics of Lord Caitanya; vinā—without; āra—else; mukhe—in his mouth; anya nāi—nothing else.
Bhugarbha Gosāñi, a disciple of Gadādhara Paṇḍita, was always engaged in topics regarding Lord Caitanya, knowing nothing else. Sri Caitanya-caritamrta – 1975 Edition : Cc. Adi-lila : Adi 8: The Author Receives the Orders of Krsna and Guru : Adi 8.68
bhūgarbha gosāñi, āra bhāgavata-dāsa
yei dui āsi’ kaila vṛndāvane vāsa
bhūgarbha gosāñi—of the name Bhūgarbha Gosāñi; āra—and; bhāgavata-dāsa—of the name Bhāgavata dāsa; yei dui—both of them; āsi’-coming; kaila—did; vṛndāvane vāsa—residing in Vṛndāvana.
The eleventh branch of Gadādhara Gosvāmī was Bhūgarbha Gosāñi, and the twelfth was Bhāgavata dāsa. Both of them went to Vṛndāvana and resided there for life.
Bhūgarbha Gosāñi, formerly known as Prema-mañjarī, was a great friend of Lokanātha Gosvāmī, who constructed the temple of Gokulānanda, one of the seven important temples of Vṛndāvana-namely, Govinda, Gopīnātha, Madana-mohana, Rādhāramaṇa, Śyāmasundara, Rādhā-Dāmodara and Gokulānanda-that are authorized institutions of Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇavas. Sri Caitanya-caritamrta – 1975 Edition : Cc. Adi-lila : Adi 12: The Expansions of Advaita Acarya and Gadadhara Pandita : Adi 12.82
cakravartī śivānanda sadā vrajavāsī
mahāśākhā-madhye teṅho sudṛḍha viśvāsī
cakravartī śivānanda—of the name Śivānanda Cakravartī; sadā—always; vraja-vāsī—resident of Vṛndāvana; mahā-śākhā-madhye—amongst the great branches; teṅho—he is; sudṛḍha viśvāsī—possessing firm faith.
Śivānanda Cakravartī, the thirty-third branch, who always lived in Vṛndāvana with firm conviction, is considered an important branch of Gadādhara Paṇḍita.
The Gaura-gaṇoddeśa-dīpikā, verse 183, mentions that Śivānanda Cakravartī was formerly Lavaṅga-mañjarī. The Śākhā-nirṇaya, written by Yadunandana dāsa, also names other branches of Gadādhara Paṇḍita, as follows: (1) Mādhava Ācārya, (2) Gopāla dāsa, (3) Hṛdayānanda, (4) Vallabha Bhaṭṭa (the Vallabha-sampradāya, or Puṣṭimārga-sampradāya, is very famous), (5) Madhu Paṇḍita (this famous devotee lived near Khaḍadaha in the village known as Sāṅibonā-grāma, about two miles east of the Khaḍadaha station, and constructed the temple of Gopīnāthajī in Vṛndāvana), (6) Acyutānanda, (7) Candraśekhara, (8) Vakreśvara Paṇḍita, (9) Dāmodara, (10) Bhagavān Ācārya, (11) Ananta Ācāryavarya, (12) Kṛṣṇadāsa, (13) Paramānanda Bhaṭṭācārya, (14) Bhavānanda Gosvāmī, (15) Caitanya dāsa, (16) Lokanātha Bhaṭṭa (this devotee, who lived in the village of Tālakhaḍi in the district of Yaśohara and constructed the temple of Rādhāvinoda, was the spiritual master of Narottama dāsa Ṭhākura and a great friend of Bhūgarbha Gosvāmī), (17) Govinda Ācārya, (18) Akrūra Ṭhākura, (19) Saṅketa Ācārya, (20) Pratāpāditya, (21) Kamalākānta Ācārya, (22) Yādava Ācārya and (23) Nārāyaṇa Paḍihārī (a resident of Jagannātha Purī).
Sri Caitanya-caritamrta – 1975 Edition : Cc. Adi-lila : Adi 12: The Expansions of Advaita Acarya and Gadadhara Pandita : Adi 12.88
bhūgarbha-gosāñi, āra śrī-jīva-gosāñi
śrī-yādava-ācārya, āra govinda gosāñi
bhūgarbha-gosāñi—Bhūgarbha Gosāñi; āra—and; śrī-jīva-gosāñi—Śrī Jīva Gosvāmī; śrī-yādava-ācārya—Śrī Yādava Ācārya; āra—and; govinda gosāñi—Govinda Gosvāmī.
Bhūgarbha Gosvāmī, Śrī Jīva Gosvāmī, Śrī Yādava Ācārya and Govinda Gosvāmī also accompanied Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī.
Sri Caitanya-caritamrta – 1975 Edition : Cc. Madhya-lila : Madhya 18: Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s Visit to Sri Vrndavana : Madhya 18.50
‘govinda’ bhakta, āra vāṇī-kṛṣṇadāsa
puṇḍarīkākṣa, īśāna, āra laghu-haridāsa
govinda—Govinda; bhakta—a great devotee; āra—and; vāṇī-kṛṣṇadāsa—Vāṇī Kṛṣṇadāsa; puṇḍarīkākṣa—Puṇḍarīkākṣa; īśāna—Īśāna; āra—and; laghu-haridāsa—Laghu Haridāsa.
The great devotee Govinda, Vāṇī Kṛṣṇadāsa, Puṇḍarīkākṣa, Īśāna and Laghu Haridāsa also accompanied him.
Laghu Haridāsa should not be confused with Junior Haridāsa, who committed suicide at Prayāga. Generally a devotee is called Haridāsa, and consequently there are many Haridāsas. The chief was Ṭhākura Haridāsa. There was also a Madhyama Haridāsa.
In Bhakti-ratnākara (Sixth Wave), there is a list of many of the chief devotees who accompanied Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī.
gosvāmī gopāla-bhaṭṭa ati dayāmaya
bhūgarbha, śrī-lokanātha–guṇera ālaya
śrī-madhu-paṇḍita–yāṅra caritra āścarya
premī kṛṣṇadāsa kṛṣṇadāsa brahmacārī
yādava ācārya, nārāyaṇa kṛpāvān
śrī-puṇḍarīkākṣa-gosāñi, govinda, īśāna
śrī-govinda vāṇī-kṛṣṇadāsa aty-udāra
śrī-uddhava–madhye-madhye gauḍe gati yāṅra
dvija-haridāsa kṛṣṇadāsa kavirāja
śrī-gopāla-dāsa yāṅra alaukika kāya
śrī-gopāla, mādhavādi yateka vaiṣṇava
“The following Vaiṣṇavas were present with Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī: the merciful Gopāla Bhaṭṭa Gosvāmī; Bhūgarbha Gosvāmī; Śrī Lokanātha dāsa Gosvāmī, a reservoir of good qualities; Śrī Mādhava; Śrī Paramānanda Bhaṭṭācārya; Śrī Madhu Paṇḍita, whose characteristics are all wonderful; Premī Kṛṣṇadāsa; Kṛṣṇadāsa Brahmacārī; Yādava Ācārya; the merciful Nārāyaṇa; Śrī Puṇḍarīkākṣa Gosvāmī; Govinda; Īśāna; Śrī Govinda; the magnanimous Vāṇī Kṛṣṇadāsa; Śrī Uddhava, who occasionally visited Bengal; Dvija Haridāsa; Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja; Śrī Gopāla dāsa, whose body is completely spiritual; Śrī Gopāla; Mādhava; and many others.” Sri Caitanya-caritamrta – 1975 Edition : Cc. Madhya-lila : Madhya 18: Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s Visit to Sri Vrndavana : Madhya 18.52
Bhugarbha Goswami was Lokanatha’s closest friend and constant companion. He was Prema Manjari in Vraja (Gaura-ganoddesha-dipika 187).
bhugarbha-thakkurasyasit purvakhya prema-manjari.
According to the Sadhana-dipika, Bhugarbha was Lokanatha’s paternal uncle. The Shakha-nirnayamrita adds the following comments on Bhugarbha Goswami:
gosvaminam ca bhugarbham bhugarbhottham suvishrutam |
sada mahashayam vande krishna-prema-pradam prabhum ||
shrila-govinda-devasya seva-sukha-vilasinam |
dayalum premadam svaccham nityam ananda-vigraham ||
I offer my reverence to the illustrious Bhugarbha Prabhu, who is said to have been born from the bowels of the earth. He bestows love of Krishna; he takes pleasure in the service of Govinda Deva, is compassionate, simple and always joyful.
Sri Kavikarnapura writes in his Gaura-ganodesa-dipika that Bhugarbha Goswami was formerly the gopi named Prema Manjari in Vrindavana. While in Vrindavana, Bhugarbha Goswami passed away and entered into the unmanifest pastimes of the Lord on the fourteenth day of the full moon in the month of Kartika.
Lokanatha Goswami and Bhugarbha Goswami lived together in Vrindavana as one. Srila Narahari Cakravarti Thakura writes about them in his Bhakti-ratnakara: “Bhugarbha Goswami and Lokanatha Goswami were world-preachers; they were so close and affectionate to one another that they were like one body.”
In Vrindavana, Bhugarbha Goswami and Lokanatha Goswami were regarded as among the principle Goswamis, as they were senior by age and experience to many. The foremost among the subsequent followers of Rupa Goswami, Narottama Dasa Thakura, writes about Bhugarbha Goswami, with whom he had much affectionate association: “O Hari! Why am I addicted to this abominable path of karma? I didn’t worship Radha-Krishna in Vraja even one iota, nor could I understand the position of spontaneous devotion – raga-marga. Svarupa Damodara, Sanatana Goswami, Raghunatha Bhatta, Raghunatha dasa, Gopala Bhatta Goswami, Bhugarbha Goswami, Jiva Goswami, and Lokanatha Goswami – I never offered a drop of service to their lotus feet. How then shall I attain the goal of life? Krisnadasa Kaviraja is among the most exalted rasika-bhaktas, devotees whose sole interest is in relishing the mellows of devotion to Radha-Govinda and Mahaprabhu. He compiled the Caitanya-Caritamrita which describes the pastimes of Sri Caitanya and the Govinda-lilamrita, describing the pastimes of Radha-Krisna. Hearing the pastimes of Gaura-Govinda would melt even stone, but it had no effect on my consciousness. Not only have I failed to take advantage of the association of all these great souls, but I have also neglected their associates and followers. What a sad story my life has become. My life and birth are all useless. Shame on me. Alas, alas. Thus laments Narottama Dasa.”
Sri Kasisvara Goswami
kāśīśvara gosāñira śiṣya–govinda gosāñi
govindera priya-sevaka tāṅra sama nāñi
kāśīśvara gosāñira—of Kāśīśvara Gosvāmī; śiṣya—disciple; govinda—of the name Govinda; gosāñi—spiritual master; govindera—of Govinda; priya-sevaka—most confidential servitor; tāṅra—his; sama—equal; nāñi—is none.
Govinda Gosāñi, the priest engaged in the service of Lord Govinda in Vṛndāvana, was a disciple of Kāśīśvara Gosāñi. There was no servant more dear to the Govinda Deity.
Kāśīśvara Gosāñi was one of the contemporaries of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu who was with the Lord in Jagannātha Purī. Also known as Kāśīśvara Paṇḍita, he was a disciple of Īśvara Purī and son of Vāsudeva Bhaṭṭācārya, who belonged to the dynasty of Kāñjilāla Kānu. His surname was Caudhurī. His nephew, his sister’s son, who was named Rudra Paṇḍita, was the original priest of Vallabhapura, which is situated about one mile from the Śrīrāmapura railway station in the village of Cātarā. Installed there are the Deities of Rādhā-Govinda and Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. Kāśīśvara Gosāñi was a very strong man, and therefore when Lord Caitanya visited the temple of Jagannātha, he used to protect the Lord from the crowds. Another of his duties was to distribute prasāda to the devotees after kīrtana.
Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura also visited this temple at Vallabhapura. At that time the person in charge was a Śaivite, Śrī Śivacandra Caudhurī, who was a descendant of Kāśīśvara Gosāñi’s brother. In Vallabhapura there was a permanent arrangement to cook nine kilos of rice, vegetables and other foodstuffs, and near the village there is sufficient land, which belongs to the Deity, on which this rice was grown. Unfortunately, the descendants of Kāśīśvara Gosāñi’s brother have sold a major portion of this land, and therefore the Deity worship has now been hampered.
It is said in the Gaura-gaṇoddeśa-dīpikā that the servant of Kṛṣṇa in Vṛndāvana named Bhṛṅgāra descended as Kāśīśvara Gosāñi during the pastimes of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu. In our householder life we also sometimes visited this temple of Vallabhapura and took prasāda there at noon. The Deities of this temple, Śrī Śrī Rādhā-Govinda and the Gaurāṅga vigraha, are extremely beautiful. Near Vallabhapura is another beautiful temple of Jagannātha. We sometimes used to take prasāda in this Jagannātha temple also. These two temples are situated within a one mile-radius of the Śrīrāmapura railway station, near Calcutta.
Sri Caitanya-caritamrta – 1975 Edition : Cc. Adi-lila : Adi 8: The Author Receives the Orders of Krsna and Guru : Adi 8.66 :
īśvara-purīra śiṣya–brahmacārī kāśīśvara
śrī-govinda nāma tāṅra priya anucara
īśvara-purīra śiṣya—disciple of Īśvara Purī; brahmacārī kāśīśvara—of the name Brahmacārī Kāśīśvara; śrī-govinda—of the name Śrī Govinda; nāma—name; tāṅra—his; priya—very dear; anucara—follower.
Brahmacārī Kāśīśvara was a disciple of Īśvara Purī, and Śrī Govinda was another of his dear disciples.
Govinda was the personal servant of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. In the Gaura-gaṇoddeśa-dīpikā, verse 137, it is stated that the servants formerly named Bhṛṅgāra and Bhaṅgura in Vṛndāvana became Kāśīśvara and Govinda in Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s pastimes. Govinda always engaged in the service of the Lord, even at great risk. Sri Caitanya-caritamrta – 1975 Edition : Cc. Adi-lila : Adi 10: The Trunk, Branches and Sub-branches of the Caitanya Tree : Adi 10.138
tāṅra siddhi-kāle doṅhe tāṅra ājñā pāñā
nīlācale prabhu-sthāne milila āsiyā
tāṅra siddhi-kāle—at the time of Īśvara Purī’s passing away; doṅhe—the two of them; tāṅra—his; ājñā—order; pāñā—getting; nīlācale—at Jagannātha Purī; prabhu-sthāne—at the place of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu; milila—met; āsiyā—coming there.
In the list of prominent devotees at Nīlācala [Jagannātha Purī], Kāśīśvara was the eighteenth and Govinda the nineteenth. They both came to see Caitanya Mahāprabhu at Jagannātha Purī, being thus ordered by Īśvara Purī at the time of his passing away. Sri Caitanya-caritamrta – 1975 Edition : Cc. Adi-lila : Adi 10: The Trunk, Branches and Sub-branches of the Caitanya Tree : Adi 10.139
gurura sambandhe mānya kaila duṅhākāre
tāṅra ājñā māni’ sevā dilena doṅhāre
gurura sambandhe—in relationship with His spiritual master; mānya—honor; kaila—offered; duṅhākāre—to both of them; tāṅra ājñā—his order; māni’-accepting; sevā—service; dilena—gave them; doṅhāre—the two of them.
Both Kāśīśvara and Govinda were Godbrothers of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, and thus the Lord duly honored them as soon as they arrived. But because Īśvara Purī had ordered them to give Caitanya Mahāprabhu personal service, the Lord accepted their service. Sri Caitanya-caritamrta – 1975 Edition : Cc. Adi-lila : Adi 10: The Trunk, Branches and Sub-branches of the Caitanya Tree : Adi 10.140
aṅga-sevā govindere dilena īśvara
jagannātha dekhite calena āge kāśīśvara
aṅga-sevā—taking care of the body; govindere—unto Govinda; dilena—He gave; īśvara—the Supreme Personality of Godhead; jagannātha—the Jagannātha Deity; dekhite—while going to visit; calena—goes; āge—in front; kāśīśvara—of the name Kāśīśvara.
Govinda cared for the body of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, whereas Kāśīśvara went in front of the Lord when He went to see Jagannātha in the temple. Sri Caitanya-caritamrta – 1975 Edition : Cc. Adi-lila : Adi 10: The Trunk, Branches and Sub-branches of the Caitanya Tree : Adi 10.141
aparaśa yāya gosāñi manuṣya-gahane
manuṣya ṭheli’ patha kare kāśī balavāne
aparaśa—untouched; yāya—goes; gosāñi—Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu; manuṣya-gahane—in the crowd; manuṣya theli’-pushing the crowd of men; patha kare—clears the way; kāśī—Kāśīśvara; balavāne—very strong.
When Caitanya Mahāprabhu went to the temple of Jagannātha, Kāśīśvara, being very strong, cleared the crowds aside with his hands so that Caitanya Mahāprabhu could pass untouched. Sri Caitanya-caritamrta – 1975 Edition : Cc. Adi-lila : Adi 10: The Trunk, Branches and Sub-branches of the Caitanya Tree : Adi 10.142
jagadānanda, bhagavān, govinda, kāsīśvara
paramānanda-purī, āra svarūpa-dāmodara
jagadānanda—of the name Jagadānanda; bhagavān—of the name Bhagavān; govinda—of the name Govinda; kāsīśvara—of the name Kāsīśvara; paramānanda-purī—of the name Paramānanda Purī; āra svarūpa-dāmodara—and Svarūpa Dāmodara, His secretary.
Jagadānanda, Bhagavān, Govinda, Kāśīśvara, Paramānanda Purī and Svarūpa Dāmodara were other devotees who also lived with the Lord. Sri Caitanya-caritamrta – 1975 Edition : Cc. Madhya-lila : Madhya 1: The Later Pastimes of Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu : Madhya 1.253
kāśīśvara āsibena saba tīrtha dekhiyā
prabhu-ājñāya muñi āinu tomā-pade dhāñā
kāśīśvara—Kāśīśvara; āsibena—will come; saba—all; tīrtha—holy places; dekhiyā—visiting; prabhu-ājñāya—under the order of my spiritual master; muñi—I; āinu—have come; tomā—to Your; pade—lotus feet; dhāñā—running.
“Kāśīśvara will also come here after visiting all the holy places. However, following the orders of my spiritual master, I have hastily come to be present at Your lotus feet.” Sri Caitanya-caritamrta – 1975 Edition : Cc. Madhya-lila : Madhya 10: The Lord’s Return to Jagannatha Puri : Madhya 10.134
eta śuni’ sārvabhauma prabhure puchila
purī-gosāñi śūdra-sevaka kāṅhe ta’ rākhila
eta śuni’-hearing this; sārvabhauma—Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya; prabhure—unto the Lord; puchila—inquired; purī-gosāñi—Īśvara Purī; śūdra-sevaka—a servant who is a śūdra; kāṅhe ta’—why; rākhila—kept.
After hearing this, Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya asked Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, “Why did Īśvara Purī keep a servant who comes from a śūdra family?”
Both Kāśīśvara and Govinda were personal servants of Īśvara Purī. After Īśvara Purī’s demise, Kāśīśvara went to visit all the holy places of India. Following the orders of his spiritual master, Govinda immediately went to Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu for shelter. Govinda came from a śūdra family, but because he was initiated by Īśvara Purī, he was certainly a brāhmaṇa. Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya here asked Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu why Īśvara Purī accepted a disciple from a śūdra family.
According to the smṛti-śāstra, which gives directions for the management of the varṇāśrama institution, a brāhmaṇa cannot accept a disciple from the lower castes. In other words, a kṣatriya, vaiśya or śūdra cannot be accepted as a servant. If a spiritual master accepts such a person, he is contaminated. Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya therefore asked why Īśvara Purī accepted a servant or disciple born of a śūdra family.
In answer to this question, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu replied that His spiritual master, Īśvara Purī, was so empowered that he was as good as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. As such, Īśvara Purī was the spiritual master of the whole world. He was not a servant of any mundane rule or regulation. An empowered spiritual master like Īśvara Purī can bestow his mercy upon anyone, irrespective of caste or creed. The conclusion is that a spiritual master who is authorized and empowered by Kṛṣṇa and his own guru should be considered as good as the Supreme Personality of Godhead Himself. That is the verdict of Viśvanātha Cakravartī: sākṣād-dharitvenaśā. An authorized spiritual master is as good as Hari, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. As Hari is free to act as He likes, the empowered spiritual master is also free. As Hari is not subject to mundane rules and regulations, the spiritual master empowered by Him is also not subject. According to the Caitanya-caritāmṛta (Antya-līlā 7.11), kṛṣṇa-śakti vinā nahe tāra pravartana.
An authorized spiritual master empowered by Kṛṣṇa can spread the glories of the holy name of the Lord, for he has power of attorney from the Supreme Personality of Godhead. In the mundane world, anyone possessing his master’s power of attorney can act on behalf of his master. Similarly, a spiritual master empowered by Kṛṣṇa through his own bona fide spiritual master should be considered as good as the Supreme Personality of Godhead Himself. That is the meaning of sākṣād-dharitvena. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu therefore describes the activities of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and the bona fide spiritual master as follows. Sri Caitanya-caritamrta – 1975 Edition : Cc. Madhya-lila : Madhya 10: The Lord’s Return to Jagannatha Puri : Madhya 10.136 :