The simultaneous occurrence of the Lord's appearance and the lunar eclipse indicated the distinctive mission of the Lord. This mission was to preach the importance of chanting the holy names of the Lord in this age of Kali (quarrel). In this present age quarrels take place even over trifles, and therefore the śāstras have recommended for this age a common platform for realization, namely chanting the holy names of the Lord. People can hold meetings to glorify the Lord in their respective languages and with melodious songs, and if such performances are executed in an offenseless manner, it is certain that the participants will gradually attain spiritual perfection without having to undergo more rigorous methods. At such meetings everyone, the learned and the foolish, the rich and the poor, the Hindus and the Muslims, the Englishmen and the Indians, and the caṇḍālas and the brāhmaṇas, can all hear the transcendental sounds and thus cleanse the dust of material association from the mirror of the heart. To confirm the Lord's mission, all the people of the world will accept the holy name of the Lord as the common platform for the universal religion of mankind. In other words, the advent of the holy name took place along with the advent of Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu.
- 1 Bhagavad-gita As It Is
- 2 Srimad-Bhagavatam
- 3 Sri Caitanya-caritamrta
- 4 Other Books by Srila Prabhupada
Bhagavad-gita As It Is
BG Chapters 7 - 12
Of the hymns in the Sāma Veda I am the Bṛhat-sāma, and of poetry I am the Gāyatrī. Of months I am Mārgaśīrṣa (November-December), and of seasons I am flower-bearing spring.
It has already been explained by the Lord that amongst all the Vedas, He is the Sāma Veda. The Sāma Veda is rich with beautiful songs played by the various demigods. One of these songs is the Bṛhat-sāma, which has an exquisite melody and is sung at midnight.
In Sanskrit, there are definite rules that regulate poetry; rhyme and meter are not written whimsically, as in much modern poetry. Amongst the regulated poetry, the Gāyatrī mantra, which is chanted by the duly qualified brāhmaṇas, is the most prominent. The Gāyatrī mantra is mentioned in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. Because the Gāyatrī mantra is especially meant for God realization, it represents the Supreme Lord. This mantra is meant for spiritually advanced people, and when one attains success in chanting it, he can enter into the transcendental position of the Lord. One must first acquire the qualities of the perfectly situated person, the qualities of goodness according to the laws of material nature, in order to chant the Gāyatrī mantra. The Gāyatrī mantra is very important in Vedic civilization and is considered to be the sound incarnation of Brahman. Brahmā is its initiator, and it is passed down from him in disciplic succession.
SB Preface and Introduction
On His way back from Vṛndāvana He first came to Prayāga, where He met Rūpa Gosvāmī along with his younger brother, Anupama. Then He came down to Vārāṇasī (Benares), where he became the guest of Śrī Tapana Miśra and Candraśekhara, assisted by a Mahārāṣṭra brāhmaṇa. At that time Vārāṇasī was headed by a great sannyāsī of the Māyāvāda school named Śrīpāda Prakāśānanda Sarasvatī. When the Lord was at Vārāṇasī, the people in general became more attracted to Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu on account of His mass saṅkīrtana movement. Wherever He visited, especially the Viśvanātha temple, thousands of pilgrims would follow Him. Some were attracted by His bodily features, and others were attracted by His melodious songs glorifying the Lord.
SB Canto 2
The sublime form of religious performances to free oneself from all reactions of sins is suggested herein by the greatest authority, Śrī Śukadeva Gosvāmī. Kīrtanam, or glorifying the Lord, can be performed in very many ways, such as remembering, visiting temples to see the Deity, offering prayers in front of the Lord, and hearing recitations of glorification of the Lord as they are mentioned in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam or in the Bhagavad-gītā. Kīrtanam can be performed both by singing the glories of the Lord in accompaniment with melodious music and by recitation of scriptures like Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam or Bhagavad-gītā.
When the Lord was engaged in His pastimes of the rāsa dance in the forest of Vṛndāvana, enlivening the sexual desires of the wives of the inhabitants of Vṛndāvana by sweet and melodious songs, a demon of the name Śaṅkhacūḍa, a rich follower of the treasurer of heaven (Kuvera), kidnapped the damsels, and the Lord severed his head from his trunk.
SB Canto 5
The path of this material world is full of material miseries, and various troubles disturb the conditioned souls. Sometimes he loses, and sometimes he gains. In either case, the path is full of danger. Sometimes the conditioned soul is separated from his father by death or other circumstances. Leaving him aside he gradually becomes attached to others, such as his children. In this way, the conditioned soul is sometimes illusioned and afraid. Sometimes he cries loudly out of fear. Sometimes he is happy maintaining his family, and sometimes he is overjoyed and sings melodiously. In this way he becomes entangled and forgets his separation from the Supreme Personality of Godhead since time immemorial. Thus he traverses the dangerous path of material existence, and on this path he is not at all happy. Those who are self-realized simply take shelter of the Supreme Personality of Godhead in order to get out of this dangerous material existence. Without accepting the devotional path, one cannot get out of the clutches of material existence. The conclusion is that no one can be happy in material life. One must take to Kṛṣṇa consciousness.
SB Canto 7
The steps of King Indra's residence were made of coral, the floor was bedecked with invaluable emeralds, the walls were of crystal, and the columns of vaidūrya stone. The wonderful canopies were beautifully decorated, the seats were bedecked with rubies, and the silk bedding, as white as foam, was decorated with pearls. The ladies of the palace, who were blessed with beautiful teeth and the most wonderfully beautiful faces, walked here and there in the palace, their ankle bells tinkling melodiously, and saw their own beautiful reflections in the gems. The demigods, however, being very much oppressed, had to bow down and offer obeisances at the feet of Hiraṇyakaśipu, who chastised the demigods very severely and for no reason. Thus Hiraṇyakaśipu lived in the palace and severely ruled everyone.
SB Canto 8
In that garden there was a very large lake filled with shining golden lotus flowers and the flowers known as kumuda, kahlāra, utpala and śatapatra, which added excellent beauty to the mountain. There were also bilva, kapittha, jambīra and bhallātaka trees. Intoxicated bumblebees drank honey and hummed with the chirping of the birds, whose songs were very melodious. The lake was crowded with swans, kāraṇḍavas, cakrāvakas, cranes, and flocks of water chickens, dātyūhas, koyaṣṭis and other murmuring birds. Because of the agitating movements of the fish and tortoises, the water was decorated with pollen that had fallen from the lotus flowers. The lake was surrounded by kadamba flowers, vetasa flowers, nalas, nīpas, vañjulakas, kundas, kurubakas, aśokas, śirīṣas, kūṭajas, iṅgudas, kubjakas, svarṇa-yūthīs, nāgas, punnāgas, jātīs, mallikās, śatapatras, jālakās and mādhavī-latās. The banks were also abundantly adorned with varieties of trees that yielded flowers and fruits in all seasons. Thus the entire mountain stood gloriously decorated.
SB Cantos 10.14 to 12 (Translations Only)
Dear Kṛṣṇa, what woman in all the three worlds wouldn't deviate from religious behavior when bewildered by the sweet, drawn-out melody of Your flute? Your beauty makes all three worlds auspicious. Indeed, even the cows, birds, trees and deer manifest the ecstatic symptom of bodily hair standing on end when they see Your beautiful form.
One gopī, joining Lord Mukunda in His singing, sang pure melodious tones that rose harmoniously above His. Kṛṣṇa was pleased and showed great appreciation for her performance, saying "Excellent! Excellent!" Then another gopī repeated the same melody, but in a special metrical pattern, and Kṛṣṇa praised her also.
Let me offer my respectful obeisances unto my spiritual master, the son of Vyāsadeva, Śukadeva Gosvāmī. It is he who defeats all inauspicious things within this universe. Although in the beginning he was absorbed in the happiness of Brahman realization and was living in a secluded place, giving up all other types of consciousness, he became attracted by the pleasing, most melodious pastimes of Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa. He therefore mercifully spoke this supreme Purāṇa, Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, which is the bright light of the Absolute Truth and which describes the activities of the Lord.
O my merciful Lord Caitanya, may the nectarean Ganges waters of Your transcendental activities flow on the surface of my desertlike tongue. Beautifying these waters are the lotus flowers of singing, dancing and loud chanting of Kṛṣṇa's holy name, which are the pleasure abodes of unalloyed devotees. These devotees are compared to swans, ducks and bees. The river's flowing produces a melodious sound that gladdens their ears.
Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu asked Raghunātha Bhaṭṭācārya not to marry but to remain a brahmacārī, and He also ordered him to read Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam constantly. Thus he went to Vṛndāvana, where he engaged in reciting Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam to Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī. He was so expert in reciting Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam that he would recite each and every verse in three melodious tunes. While Raghunātha Bhaṭṭa Gosvāmī was living with Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, the Lord blessed him by offering him betel nuts offered to the Jagannātha Deity and a garland of tulasī said to be as long as fourteen cubits. Under Raghunātha Bhaṭṭa Gosvāmī’s order, one of his disciples constructed the Govinda temple. Raghunātha Bhaṭṭa Gosvāmī supplied all the ornaments of the Govinda Deity.
May Gopīnāthajī, who attracts all the gopīs with the song of His flute and who has begun the most melodious rāsa dace on the bank of the Yamunā in Vaṁśīvaṭa, be merciful upon us.
One who constantly reads the Kṛṣṇa-karṇāmṛta can fully understand the beauty and melodious taste of the pastimes of Lord Kṛṣṇa.
“Indeed, their effulgence is like the brilliance of a million suns. Nor have I ever heard the Lord's names chanted so melodiously.
“"His character is very sweet, and His pastimes are melodious. He is expert in intelligence, and thus He enjoys all His pastimes and mellows."
“"Let me offer my respectful obeisances unto my spiritual master, the son of Vyāsadeva, Śukadeva Gosvāmī. It is he who defeats all inauspicious things within this universe. Although in the beginning he was absorbed in the happiness of Brahman realization and was living in a secluded place, giving up all other types of consciousness, he became attracted by the most melodious pastimes of Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa. He therefore mercifully spoke the supreme Purāṇa, known as Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, which is the bright light of the Absolute Truth and which describes the activities of Lord Kṛṣṇa."
“His fingernails are many full moons, and they dance on the flute in His hands. Their song is the melody of that flute. His toenails are also many full moons, and they dance on the ground. Their song is the jingling of His ankle bells.
“‘Apart from these sixty transcendental qualities, Kṛṣṇa has an additional four transcendental qualities, which are not manifested even in the personality of Nārāyaṇa. These are: (1) Kṛṣṇa is like an ocean filled with waves of pastimes that evoke wonder within everyone in the three worlds. (2) In His activities of conjugal love, He is always surrounded by His dear devotees who possess unequaled love for Him. (3) He attracts the minds of all three worlds with the melodious vibration of His flute. (4) His personal beauty and opulence are beyond compare. No one is equal to Him, and no one is greater than Him. Thus the Personality of Godhead astonishes all living entities, both moving and nonmoving, within the three worlds. He is so beautiful that He is called Kṛṣṇa.
“"All the cranes and swans in the water are being enchanted by the melodious song of Kṛṣṇa"s flute. They have approached and are worshiping the Supreme Personality of Godhead with full attention. Alas, they are closing their eyes and are becoming completely silent.’
""O dear Kṛṣṇa, by Your smiling glances and melodious talk, You have awakened a fire of lusty desire in our hearts. Now You should extinguish that fire with a stream of nectar from Your lips by kissing us. Kindly do this. Otherwise, dear friend, the fire within our hearts will burn our bodies to ashes because of separation from You. Thus by meditation we shall claim shelter at Your lotus feet.""
Other Books by Srila Prabhupada
Nectar of Devotion
In other words, the minds of the cowherd boys became almost vacant on account of Kṛṣṇa's separation. An example of impatience was also shown by the cowherd boys when Kṛṣṇa went to Mathurā. Out of the sorrow of separation, all these boys forgot to take care of their cowherding and tried to forget all the melodious songs they used to sing in the pasturing ground. At last they had no desire to live anymore, being separated from Kṛṣṇa.
Krsna, The Supreme Personality of Godhead
The young damsels of Vraja were very nicely dressed and anointed with pulp of sandalwood and decorated with flowers. The moon was shining in the sky, surrounded by glittering stars. The breeze was blowing, bearing the aroma of mallikā flowers, and the bumblebees were mad after the aroma. Taking advantage of the pleasing atmosphere, Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma began to sing very melodiously. The damsels became so absorbed in Their rhythmical song that they almost forgot themselves; their hair loosened, their clothes slackened, and their garlands began to fall to the ground.
First of all They learned how to sing, how to compose songs and how to recognize the different tunes; They learned the favorable and unfavorable accents and meters, how to sing different kinds of rhythms and melodies, and how to follow them by beating different kinds of drums. They learned how to dance to the rhythm of melody and different songs. They learned how to write dramas, and They learned the various types of painting, from simple village arts up to the highest perfectional stage. They also learned how to paint tilaka on the face by making different kinds of dots on the forehead and cheeks. Then They learned the art of making paintings on the floor with a liquid paste of rice and flour; such paintings are very popular at auspicious ceremonies performed at household affairs or in the temple.
They also learned how to set valuable jewels in ornaments. They learned the art of ringing waterpots. Waterpots are filled with water to a certain measurement so that as one beats on the pots, different tones are produced, and when the pots are beaten together they produce a melodious sound. They also learned how to splash water in the rivers or lakes while taking a bath among friends. They learned how to decorate with flowers. This art of decorating can still be seen in various temples of Vṛndāvana during the summer season. It is called phulla-bāḍi. The dais, the throne, the walls and the ceiling are all fully decorated, and a small, aromatic fountain of flowers is fixed in the center. Because of these floral decorations, the people, fatigued from the heat of the summer, become refreshed.
Balarāma also learned how to make various syrups and beverages required at various times, having various tastes and intoxicating effects. They also learned different types of sewing and embroidery work, as well as how to manipulate thin threads for dancing puppets. This art includes how to string wires on musical instruments, such as the vīṇā, sitar, esarāja and tamboura, to produce melodious sounds. Then They learned how to make and solve riddles. They learned the art of how even a dull student can very quickly learn the alphabet and read books. Then They learned how to rehearse and act out a drama. They also studied the art of solving crossword puzzles, filling up the missing spaces and making complete words.
And because in those days Lord Kṛṣṇa was also there, the palace was also decorated by His thousands of queens. When the queens, with their heavy breasts and thin waists, moved within the palace and their ankle bells rang very melodiously with their movement, the whole palace appeared more opulent than the heavenly kingdom. Because a portion of their breasts was sprinkled with saffron powder, the pearl necklaces on their breasts appeared reddish. With their beautiful earrings and flowing hair, the queens appeared very attractive. After seeing such beauties in the palace of King Yudhiṣṭhira, Duryodhana was envious. He was especially envious and lustful upon seeing the beauty of Draupadī because he had cherished a special attraction for her from the very beginning of her marriage with the Pāṇḍavas.
At that time the vibration of "Jaya! Jaya!" was heard all over the world, and from the sky came sounds of drums beaten by the denizens of heaven. Great demigods were overwhelmed with joy and showered flowers on the earth.
“At that time, I entered the arena of competition, and the ankle bells on my legs sounded very melodious as I walked. I was nicely dressed with new silken garments, flowers decorated my hair, and because of Lord Kṛṣṇa's victory I was in ecstatic joy and smiling very pleasingly. I carried in my hands a golden necklace bedecked with jewels, which glittered at intervals. My curling hair encircled my face, which shone with a bright luster due to the reflection of my various earrings.
The crystal-clear water of the lakes contained many blooming lotus flowers of different colors, like blue, yellow, white and red, and the saffron powder from the lotus flowers was blown all around by the breeze. All the lakes were full of beautiful swans, ducks and cranes, crying occasionally with melodious sounds. Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa sometimes entered those lakes or the rivers with His wives and enjoyed swimming pastimes with them in full jubilation. Sometimes the wives of Lord Kṛṣṇa, who were all goddesses of fortune, would embrace the Lord in the midst of the water while swimming or taking a bath, and the red vermilion of kuṅkuma decorating their beautiful breasts would adorn the chest of the Lord with a reddish color.
The only difference is that in the spiritual world such facilities are eternal, never-ending occurrences, whereas in the material world they are simply impermanent perverted reflections. When Lord Kṛṣṇa was engaged in such enjoyment, the Gandharvas and professional musicians would glorify Him with melodious musical concerts, accompanied by kettledrums, mṛdaṅgas and other drums, along with stringed instruments and brass bugles, and the whole atmosphere would change into a greatly festive celebration. In a festive mood, the wives of the Lord would sometimes sprinkle water on the His body with a syringelike instrument, and the Lord would similarly wet the bodies of the queens. When Kṛṣṇa and the queens engaged themselves in these pastimes, it seemed as if the heavenly king Yakṣarāja were engaged in pastimes with his many wives. (Yakṣarāja is also known as Kuvera and is considered the treasurer of the heavenly kingdom.)
Light of the Bhagavata
A rich man displays his opulence in various colorful ways. He has a good residential bungalow with sufficient property and a well-trimmed garden. The bungalow is decorated with up-to-date furniture and carpets. There are motorcars with dazzling polish, and a radio set receiving and broadcasting colorful news and melodious songs. All these captivate their proprietor as though he were in a dreamland of his own creation.