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Well, is that (Lord Caitanya inquiring from Ramananda Raya) important? That's the scene about the meeting

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"Lord Caitanya inquired from him and Ramananda Raya replied" |"That's the scene about the meeting" |"Well, is that important"

Conversations and Morning Walks

1967 Conversations and Morning Walks

Meeting, meeting, that discussion would you like to give?

Discourse on Lord Caitanya Play Between Srila Prabhupada and Hayagriva -- April 5-6, 1967, San Francisco:

Hayagrīva: This is the fourth act, first scene.

Prabhupāda: Yes, fourth act, first scene.

Hayagrīva: "Meets Rāmānanda Rāya."

Prabhupāda: Yes. Shall I speak?

Hayagrīva: Oh, yes.

Prabhupāda: So after converting Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya, Caitanya Mahāprabhu started for His South Indian tour. In South Indian tour, before meeting Rāmānanda Rāya, He visited a very nice temple, which is called Vijaya Nṛsiṁha. Shall I . . .? Shall you give that scene? That is very nice temple. Huh?

Hayagrīva: Yes. Go ahead.

Prabhupāda: Then the first scene will be the visit of Vijaya Nṛsiṁha Garh temple.

Hayagrīva: Vijaya . . .

Prabhupāda: Vijaya Nṛsiṁha Garh.

Hayagrīva: I'll get the spellings of these from you later.

Prabhupāda: I'm spelling. V-i-j-a-y N-r-i-s-i-n-g-a G-a-r-h. Vijaya Nṛsiṁha Garh temple. This is near modern Visakhapatnam shipyard. There is a very great Indian shipyard, Visakhapatnam. Formerly it was not Visakhapatnam. So near that, five miles away from that station, there is that nice temple on the hill. So I think that the temple scenery may be there and Caitanya Mahāprabhu's visiting that temple.

And after that temple He came to the bank of River Godāvarī. Just like the river Ganges is very sacred river, similarly there are others, four other rivers: Yamunā, Godāvarī, Kṛṣṇā, Narmadā. Gaṅgā, Yamunā. Godāvarī, Narmadā and Kṛṣṇā. These five rivers are considered very sacred.

So He came to the bank of Godāvarī and He took His bath and was sitting in a nice place underneath a tree and chanting "Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa." In the meantime He saw that a great procession was coming, and that should be the scenario of this. In that procession . . . formerly the kings and governors, they used to take bath in the Ganges with their paraphernalia, band party and many brāhmins and all kinds of charitable things.

In this way they used to come to take bath. So Lord Caitanya saw that somebody is coming in that great procession, and He was told about Rāmānanda Rāya, the governor of Madras province. Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya requested Him that, "You are going to South India. You must meet Rāmānanda Rāya. He's a great devotee."

So when He was sitting on the bank of the Kāverī and Rāmānanda Rāya was coming in procession, He understood that he is Rāmānanda Rāya. But because He was sannyāsī, He did not address him. But Rāmānanda Rāya, he was a great devotee, and saw a nice sannyāsī, young sannyāsī was sitting and chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa. Generally, the sannyāsīns they do not chant Hare Kṛṣṇa. They, "Oṁ Nārā . . . oṁ . . . " Simply sound oṁ. Not Hare Kṛṣṇa.

Hayagrīva: What do you mean He wouldn't address him because He was a sannyāsī?

Prabhupāda: Sannyāsīn, the restriction is the sannyāsī should not beg from pound-shilling man or see them. That is a restriction. Women, and men of pounds-shillings-pence.

Hayagrīva: But I thought Rāmānanda Rāya was a devotee.

Prabhupāda: But he was devotee, but undoubtedly, but outwardly he was a governor. Outwardly. So Caitanya Mahāprabhu did not go him, but he understood that "Here is a nice sannyāsī." He came down and offered his respect and sat down before Him. And there was acquaintances, and Lord Caitanya said that "Bhaṭṭācārya has already informed Me about you. You are a great devotee. So I have come to see you."

And then he replied: "Well, what devotee? I am a pound-shilling man, politician. But Bhaṭṭācārya is very kind to me that he has asked Your Holiness to see me. So if You have come, so kindly, kindly deliver me from this material māyā."

So there was appointment of time with Rāmānanda Rāya, and both of them met again in the evening, and there was discussion about, I mean to say, spiritual advancement of life. Lord Caitanya inquired from him and Rāmānanda Rāya replied. Of course, that's a long story, how He questioned and how he replied.

Hayagrīva: Rāmānanda Rāya.

Prabhupāda: Yes.

Hayagrīva: Well, is that important? That's the scene about the meeting.

Prabhupāda: Meeting . . . meeting, that discussion would you like to give?

Hayagrīva: Well, if it has to be rendered in the scene it's important. You want me to render the discussion?

Prabhupāda: Important is the scene that He met Rāmānanda Rāya, he came in procession, that was a nice scenery. These things are already complete. Now so far the talks are concerned, the summary of the talk was . . .

Hayagrīva: Just give me the brief summary.

Prabhupāda: Brief summary . . . in this scene Caitanya Mahāprabhu became the student. Not exactly student; He inquired and Rāmānanda Rāya answered. So the importance of the scene is that Caitanya Mahāprabhu does not follow the formality only the sannyāsīns should be the spiritual master.

Anyone who knows the science of Kṛṣṇa, he can be spiritual master. And to show this example practically, although He was sannyāsī and brāhmin and Rāmānanda Rāya was a śūdra and a gṛhastha, householder, still He became like a student and inquired Rāmānanda Rāya.

Rāmānanda Rāya felt some, I mean to say, hesitation that, "How can I take the position of a teacher to a sannyāsī?" Then Caitanya Mahāprabhu replied: "No, no. Don't hesitate." He stated that either one may be a sannyāsī or may be householder or one may be a brāhmin or śūdra, it doesn't matter.

Anyone who knows the science of Kṛṣṇa, he can take the place of teacher. So that was His, I mean to say, gift. Because in Indian society it is simply taken that the brāhmins and the sannyāsī can be spiritual master. But Caitanya Mahāprabhu said: "No. Anyone can become spiritual master provided he's conversant with the science."