Welcome to the Festival ofLord Śrī Nityānanda’s Appearance Day
Sri NityanandastakamSrila Vrindavana dasa Thakurasarac-candra-bhrantim sphurad-amala-kantim gaja-gatimhari-premonmattam dhrita-parama-sattvam smita-mukhamsada ghurnan netram kara-kalita-vetram kali-bhidambhaje nityanandam bhajana-taru-kandam niravadhi (1)I perpetually worship Sri Nityananda, the root of the tree of krishna-bhakti, whose bright face mocks the full autumn moon, whose bright complexion glistens, whose graceful gait is like that of an intoxicated elephant. Although he is the personification of pure spiritual energy, he is mad with krishna-prema, wearing a gentle smile and rolling his eyes in absorption. His hand is beautified by carrying a staff and he pierces the influence of Kali-yuga.rasanam agaram svajana-gana-sarvasvam atulamtadiyaika-prana-pratima-vasudha-jahnava-patimsada premonmadam paramaviditam manda-manasambhaje nityanandam bhajana-taru-kandam niravadhi (2)I perpetually worship Sri Nityananda, the root of the tree of krishna-bhakti, who is the abode of mellows of devotional service, who is everything for his devotees and who is beyond compare. He is the master of Vasudha and Jahnava devi, who consider him more dear than their own lives. Being always maddened in krishna-prema, he is unknown for those with meager intelligence.saci-sunu-prestham nikhila-jagad-istam sukhamayamkalau majjaj-jivoddharana-karanoddama-karunamharer-akhyanad va bhava-jaladhi-garvonnati harambhaje nityanandam bhajana-taru-kandam niravadhi (3)I perpetually worship Sri Nityananda, the root of the tree of krishna-bhakti, who is very dear to the son of Saci devi and who is worshiped by the entire universe. He is the embodiment of happiness and out of infinite mercy he is chanting the holy names of Lord Hari, thus delivering the souls drowning in the age of Kali and eradicating the swelling false pride of the ocean of repeated birth and death.
aye bhratar nrinam kali-kalusinam kim nu bhavitatatha prayascitam racaya yad anayasata imevrajanti tvam-ittham saha bhagavata mantrayati yobhaje nityanandam bhajana-taru-kandam niravadhi (4)I perpetually worship Sri Nityananda, the root of the tree of krishna-bhakti, who said to Sri Krishna Caitanya, “O brother Gauranga! What will be the destination of the sinful souls of Kali-yuga and and how will they be redeemed? Please devise a way by which they will easily attain You.”yathestham re bhratah kuru hari-hari-dhvanam anisamtato vah samsarambudhi-tarana-dayo mayi lagetidam bahu-sphotair atati ratayan yah pratigrihambhaje nityanandam bhajana-taru-kandam niravadhi (5)I perpetually worship Sri Nityananda, the root of the tree of krishna-bhakti, who wandering around in Bengal approached the door of every home. With upraised arms he exclaimed: “O Brothers! Please constantly chant the holy names of Hari. If you do so, I will take the responsibility to deliver you from the ocean of material existence.”balat samsarambhonidhi-harana-kumbhodbhavam ahosatam sreyah-sindhunnati-kumuda-bandhum samuditamkhala-sreni-sphurjat-timira-hara-surya-prabham ahambhaje nityanandam bhajana-taru-kandam niravadhi (6)I perpetually worship Sri Nityananda, the root of the tree of krishna-bhakti, who is the Agastya Muni who forcibly swallows the ocean of repeated birth and death. He is the rising full moon, which causes the ocean of the saintly devotees’ great fortune (bhavas) to swell, and who is the sun, whose blazing rays dissipate the darkness of ignorance cast by various classes of miscreants.
natantam gayantam harim anuvadantam pathi pathivrajantam pasyantam svam api na dayantam jana-ganamprakurvantam santam sakaruna-drigantam prakalanadbhaje nityanandam bhajana-taru-kandam niravadhi (7)I perpetually worship Sri Nityananda, the root of the tree of krishna-bhakti, who wandered on every path in Bengal dancing, singing and calling out the names of Hari. He lovingly bestowed his merciful sidelong glances upon all without considering their good and bad fortune.suvibhranam bhratuh kara-sarasijam komalatarammitho vaktralokocchalita-paramananda-hridayambhramantam madhuryair ahaha madayantam pura-jananbhaje nityanandam bhajana-taru-kandam niravadhi (8)I perpetually worship Sri Nityananda, the root of the tree of krishna-bhakti, who held the soft lotus-hand of his brother Sri Gauranga. When the two brothers gazed into each other’s lotus faces, they became filled with the highest bliss, delightning the townspeople with their sweet beauty.
rasanam adharam rasika-vara-sad-vaisnava-dhanamrasagaram saram patita-tati-taram smaranatahparam nityanandastakam idam apurvam pathati yastad-anghri-dvandvabjam sphuratu nitaram tasya hridaye (9)May Sri Nityananda Prabhu place His lotus feet in the heart of those lovingly reciting this unprecedented and supremely potent Nityanandastakam. It is the abode of divine mellows, the greatest treasure of the most exalted Vaisnavas and the storehouse of the essence of bhakti-rasa. It bestows liberation to the conditioned souls who simply are remembering the sublime qualities of Sri Nityananda.
PrefaceWelcome everyone to this special Sunday Feast Program. We celebrate today the appearance day of Lord Śrī Nityānanda. He is the unseparable eternal brother and associate of Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. These two Lords appear in Kali-yuga to dissipate the darkness of ignorance. One is like the Moon and the Other is like the Sun. They introduce the saṅkīrtan movement, the congregational chanting of the Holy Names as the perfect process of self-realization meant to deliver the conditioned souls in the age of Kali. The saṅkīrtanmovement is sustained on the whole by the causeless mercy of these Two Lords ever since up until now.Lord Śrī Nityānanda is an incarnation of Lord Balarāma, the first plenary expansion of Lord Kṛṣṇa. He is ever enraptured in loving service to Lord Caitanya Who is none other than Lord Kṛṣṇa Himself. Lord Kṛṣṇa and Lord Balarāma appeared 5,000 years ago. And They appeared again as Lord Śrī Nityānanda and Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu some 500 years ago.
Understandingthe importanceof catching hold of Lord Nityānanda’slotus feetNitāi pada kamalaby Śrīla Narottam Dās Ṭhākur
Nitāi pada kamala by Śrīla Narottam Dās Ṭhākur1) The lotus feet of Lord Nityānanda are a shelter where one will get the soothing moonlight not only of one, but of millions of moons. If the world wants to have real peace, it should take shelter of Lord Nityānanda.Unless one takes shelter under the shade of the lotus feet of Lord Nityānanda, it will be very difficult for him to approach Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa. If one actually wants to enter into the dancing party of Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa, he must firmly catch hold of the lotus feet of Lord Nityānanda.
Nitāi pada kamala by Śrīla Narottam Dās Ṭhākur2) Anyone who has not established his relationship with Nityānanda Prabhu is understood to have spoiled his valuable human birth.Such a human being is actually an uncontrollable animal. Because he never uttered the holy name of Nityānanda, he has become merged into so-called material happiness. What can his useless education and family tradition do to help him?
Nitāi pada kamala by Śrīla Narottam Dās Ṭhākur3) Being maddened after false prestige and identification with the body, one is thinking, oh, what is Nityānanda? What can He do for me? I don't care. The result is that he is accepting something false to be truth. If you actually want to approach the association of Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa, you must first achieve the mercy of Lord Nityānanda. When He is merciful toward you, then you will be able to approach Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa. Therefore you should firmly grasp the lotus feet of Lord Nityānanda.
Nitāi pada kamala by Śrīla Narottam Dās Ṭhākur4) The lotus feet of Nityānanda are not illusion; they are a fact. One who engages in the transcendental loving service of Nityānanda is also transcendental. Always try to catch the lotus feet of Lord Nityānanda. This Narottama dāsa is very unhappy, therefore I am praying to Lord Nityānanda to make me happy. My dear Lord, please keep me close to Your lotus feet.
Lord Nityānanda,The dispeller of KaliŚrī Śrī Nityānandāṣṭakamby Śrīla Vṛndāvan Dās Ṭhākur Śrīla Vṛndāvan Dās Ṭhākur’s Śrī Śrī Nityānandāṣṭakamwas published in Śrī Gauḍīya Darśan in Volume 4, Issue 10,on Friday 11 May 1959.
Śrī Śrī Nityānandāṣṭakamby Śrīla Vṛndāvan Dās Ṭhākursarach-chandra-bhrāntiṁ sphurad-amala-kāntiṁ gaja-gatiṁhari-premonmattaṁ dhṛta-parama-sattvaṁ smita-mukhamsadā ghūrṇan-netraṁ kara-kalita-vetraṁ kali-bhidaṁbhaje nityānandaṁ bhajana-taru-kandaṁ niravadhi He rambles like the autumn moon, His spotless lustre is radiant, and His gait resembles an elephant. He is intoxicated with prema for Hari. Bearing a form of the highest nature, His face smiles, and His eyes continuously roll. Holding a staff in hand, He is the dispeller of Kali. I eternally serve Nityānanda, the root of the tree of devotion.
kali-bhidaṁ: “The dispeller of Kali.” Kali is the personification of quarrel (kalaha).The Kali-yuga, the age in which Kali is predominant throughout the world, is said to last 432,000 years and to have begun about 5,000 years ago when Lord Kṛṣṇa withdrew from the earth. The characteristics of the Kali-yuga have been described at length in Śrīmad Bhāgavatam(see sections 1.17, 12.2, and 12.3) and are summarised in short as follows:
kali-bhidaṁ: “The dispeller of Kali.” yadā māyānṛtaṁ tandrā nidrā hiṁsā viṣādanamśoka-mohau bhayaṁ dainyaṁ sa kalis tāmasaḥ smṛtaḥ(Śrīmad Bhāgavatam: 12.3.30)“When deceit, dishonesty, laziness, sleepiness, violence, depression, lamentation, delusion, fear, and poverty become predominant (when people are fond only of what is contrary to dharma), know that to be the darkness of the Age of Kali.”
kali-bhidaṁ: “The dispeller of Kali.” Kali’s presence is found particularlyin places where dharma is ignored:abhyarthitas tadā tasmai sthānāni kalaye dadaudyūtaṁ pānaṁ striyaḥ sūnā yatrādharmaś chatur-vidhaḥpunaś cha yāchamānāya jāta-rūpam adāt prabhuḥtato ’nṛtaṁ madaṁ kāmaṁ rajo vairañ cha pañchamam(Śrīmad Bhāgavatam: 1.17.38–9)“Having been requested, Parīkṣit Mahārāj gave Kali the places of the four forms of adharma (dishonesty, lust, violence, and pride): gambling (gaming), intoxication, inappropriate association with women, and slaughter. When requested again, Parīkṣit Mahārāj gave Kali gold (wealth), where there is dishonesty, pride, lust, violence, and a fifth (form of adharma), enmity.”
kali-bhidaṁ: “The dispeller of Kali.” Nevertheless, like a thief that steals from those who are asleep but fears approaching those who are awake, Kali cannot disturb those who are discerning and attentive to their spiritual nature and purpose:kaler doṣa-nidhe rājann asti hy eko mahān guṇaḥkīrtanād eva kṛṣṇasya mukta-saṅgaḥ paraṁ vrajet(Śrīmad Bhāgavatam: 12.3.51)My dear King, although Kali-yuga is an ocean of faults, there is still one good quality about this age: Simply by chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra, one can become free from material bondage [absorption in adharma] and be promoted to the transcendental kingdom.
kali-bhidaṁ: “The dispeller of Kali.” ŚB 12.3.51kaler doṣa-nidhe rājannasti hy eko mahān guṇaḥkīrtanād eva kṛṣṇasyamukta-saṅgaḥ paraṁ vrajetkaleḥ — of the Age of Kali; doṣa-nidheḥ — in the ocean of faults; rājan — O King; asti — there is; hi — certainly; ekaḥ — one; mahān — very great; guṇaḥ — good quality; kīrtanāt — by chanting; eva — certainly; kṛṣṇasya — of the holy name of Kṛṣṇa; mukta-saṅgaḥ — liberated from material bondage; param — to the transcendental spiritual kingdom; vrajet — one can go.My dear King, although Kali-yuga is an ocean of faults, there is still one good quality about this age: Simply by chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra, one can become free from material bondage and be promoted to the transcendental kingdom.Purport: After mentioning the innumerable faults of this Age of Kali, Śukadeva Gosvāmī now mentions its one brilliant aspect. Just as one powerful king can kill innumerable thieves, one brilliant spiritual quality can destroy all the contamination of this age. It is impossible to overestimate the importance of chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare/ Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare, especially in this fallen age.
kali-bhidaṁ: “The dispeller of Kali.” kaliṁ sabhājayanty āryā guṇajñā sāra-bhāginaḥyatra saṅkīrtanenaiva sarvaḥ svartho ’bhilabhyate(Śrīmad Bhāgavatam: 11.5.36)Those who are actually advanced in knowledge are able to appreciate the essential value of this Age of Kali. Such enlightened persons worship Kali-yuga because in this fallen age all perfection of life can easily be achieved by the performance of saṅkīrtana.
kali-bhidaṁ: “The dispeller of Kali.” Vyāsadev thus advised a group of sages who came to him seeking to know which of the four universal ages (Satya, Tretā, Dvāpar, and Kali) was the best as follows:ity ukto munibhir vyāsaḥ prahasyedam athābravītśrūyatāṁ bho muni-śreṣṭhā yad uktaṁ sādhu sādhv itidhyāyan kṛte yajan yajñais tretāyāṁ dvāpare ’rchayanyad āpnoti tad āpnoti kalau saṅkīrtya keśavam(Viṣṇu-purāṇa: 6.2.14,17)“Vyāsa smiled at the question of the sages and then spoke as follows, ‘Hear, O exalted sages, why I have said, ‘Sādhu! Sādhu! (Excellent! Excellent in the Kali-yuga!)’ That which a worshipper attains in Kṛta (Satya-yuga) by meditation, in Tretā by sacrifice, and Dvāpar by worship they attain in Kali by saṅkīrtan of Kṛṣṇa.”
kali-bhidaṁ: “The dispeller of Kali.” Śrīman Nityānanda Prabhu is praised as the dispeller of Kali because He compelled Lord Gaura Kṛṣṇa to establish this most purifying process of saṅkīrtan for the souls suffering in the Age of Kali and because He so compassionately reached out to the fallen souls everywhere He went and inspired them to engage in Śrī Kṛṣṇa-saṅkīrtan.Śrīla Bhakti Vinod Ṭhākur has thus sung:nāche mātoyārā nitāi godrumera māṭhejagat mātāya nitāi premera mālasāṭepalāya durdānta kalī paḍiyā vibhrāṭe(Gītāvalī: Nagara-kīrtana, 8.5–6)“Intoxicated, Nitāi dances throughout the fields of Godruma. Slapping His arms (like a wrestler about to charge) out of divine love, Nitāi maddens the world (with joy), and thus falling into danger, fearsome Kali flees.”
kali-bhidaṁ: “The dispeller of Kali.”
There are offenses to be considered while chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra. Therefore simply by chanting Hare Kṛṣṇa one does not become ecstatic.(Caitanya-caritāmṛta Ādi 8.24)Purport: It is very beneficial to chant the names śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya prabhu-nityānandabefore chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra because by chanting these two holy names — śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya prabhu-nityānanda — one immediately becomes ecstatic, and if he then chants the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra he becomes free of offenses.
Obliviousof kali-yuga,devoteesrelish saṅkīrtan
Lord Nityānanda,The root of the tree of devotionŚrī Śrī Nityānandāṣṭakamby Śrīla Vṛndāvan Dās Ṭhākur
bhajana-taru-kandaṁ: “The root of the tree of devotion.”bhajana-taru-kandaṁ: “The root of the tree of devotion.” Śrīla Vṛndāvan Dās Ṭhākur has explained the position of Śrīman Nityānanda Prabhu as the giver and controller of all service to the Lord throughout Śrī Chaitanya-bhāgavat:saṁsārera pāra ha-i’ bhaktira sāgareye ḍubibe se bhajuka nitāichāndere(Śrī Chaitanya-bhāgavat: Ādi-khaṇḍa, 17.152)“Let anyone who wishes to cross over saṁsāra and swim in the ocean of devotion serve Śrī Nitāichānd.”
bhajana-taru-kandaṁ: “The root of the tree of devotion.”“The saṅgī, sakhā, bhāi, chhatra, śayana, vāhananityānanda vahi anya nahe kona jananānā-rūpe seve prabhu āpana-ichchhāyayāre dena adhikāra, sei jana pāya(Śrī Chaitanya-bhāgavat: Madhya-khaṇḍa, 6.67)“Without Nityānanda, no one can become Gaurachandra’s companion, friend, brother, umbrella, bed, or carrier. Nityānanda serves the Lord in various ways by His own will, and only those whom He gives the qualification can serve the Lord.”
bhajana-taru-kandaṁ: “The root of the tree of devotion.”tomāra se prema-bhakti, tumi premamayavinā tumi dile kāro bhakti nāhi haya(Śrī Chaitanya-bhāgavat: Madhya-khaṇḍa, 5.100)[Mahāprabhu has said to Nityānanda Prabhu:]“Prema-bhakti belongs to You. You are the embodiment of prema, and unless You give it, no one can have bhakti.”
bhajana-taru-kandaṁ: “The root of the tree of devotion.”•In the Upaniṣads it is stated, nāyam ātmā bala-hīnena labhyaḥ. The purport is that one cannot attain the supreme platform of self-realization without being sufficiently favored by Balarāma. •Bala does not mean physical strength. No one can attain spiritual perfection by physical strength.•One must have the spiritual strength which is infused by Balarāma, or Saṅkarṣaṇa.(Kṛṣṇa Book, Chapter 2)
bhajana-taru-kandaṁ: “The root of the tree of devotion.”•Ananta, or Śeṣa, is the source of the power which sustains all the planets in their different positions. Materially this sustaining power is known as the law of gravitation, but actually it is a display of the potency of Saṅkarṣaṇa. •Balarāma, or Saṅkarṣaṇa, is the source of spiritual power, or the original spiritual master. •Therefore Lord Nityānanda Prabhu, who is also the incarnation of Balarāma, is the original spiritual master. •And the spiritual master is the representative of Balarāma, the form of the Supreme Personality of Godhead who supplies spiritual strength. •In the Caitanya-caritāmṛta it is confirmed that the spiritual master is the manifestation of the mercy of Kṛṣṇa.(Kṛṣṇa Book, Chapter 2)
bhajana-taru-kandaṁ: “The root of the tree of devotion.”Śrīla Kṛṣṇadās Kavirāj Goswāmī has described how he personally attained everything by the mercy of Śrīman Nityānanda Prabhu:āre āre kṛṣṇadāsa, nā karaha bhayavṛndāvane yāha’—tā̐hā sarva labhya haya eta bali’ prerilā more hātasāni diyā(Śrī Chaitanya-charitāmṛta:Ādi-līlā, 5.195–6)“‘O Kṛṣṇadās! Do not be afraid. Go to Vṛndāvan! There you will attain everything.’ Saying this, Nityānanda sent me, touching me with His hand.
Taking shelter of Lord Nityānanda by chanting the Holy Names
In the mahā-mantra – Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa, Hare Hare/ Hare Rāma, Hare Rāma, Rāma Rāma, Hare Hare—the word “Rāma” refers to Balarāma. Since Lord Nityānanda is Balarāma, “Rāma” also refers to Lord Nityānanda. Thus Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Rāma addresses not only Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma but Lord Caitanya and Lord Nityānanda as well. (Teachings of Lord Caitanya, Introduction)
Thank you very much.May Lord Nityānandabless you all.