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Advent of Lord Nityananda Prabhu | Gaudiyamission

Advent of Lord Nityananda Prabhu

Posted on: February 10, 2021 Posted By: Subhamoy Chatterjee

The thirteenth day of the bright fortnight of the Bengali month of Magha is one of the most important and memorable dates in the calendar of the Gaudiya Vaishnavism all over the world. It was on this day that Prabhu Nityananda, the ultimate repository of "Bhakti" or the supreme concept of devotion through love appeared on this earth. Born into a highly spiritual Brahmin as a son of Pandit Hadai and Padmavati in the village of Ekchakra of the present Birbhum district of West Bengal, the foremost "Lilaparshad" (spiritual associate) of Sriman Mahaprabhu, Lord Nityananda has, down the last five centuries or more, ensconced himself in the hearts of millions of Krishna devotees across the globe. Almost all the venerable Vaishnava Goswamis and teachers of the cult have sung paeans of him. (This year this auspicious event falls on 25th Feb 2021)

Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Prabhupada, who resurrected the pure form of Gaudiya Vaishnavism after a gap of several centuries, was untiring in highlighting the position of Nityananda Prabhu in propagating the all-pervasive and all-inclusive "Bhakti" movement of Sriman Mahaprabhu. Addressing a mammoth religious congregation at Sonajuli in Assam's Darang district on the occasion of Lord Nityananda's appearance anniversary on 15th February 1884, Shrila Prabhupada described, the former as "the manifested image of mercy and forgiveness". He further said that Nityananda accompanied Mahaprabhu to this earth to teach how to love, irrespective of caste, creed, gender, or location. To this end, ShrilaPrabhupada continued, Lord Nityananda laid emphasis only on one aspect of devotion which is "Nama-Sankirtana" or chanting the blissful name of the Lord who is Love Incarnate. One has to secure the causeless mercy of Lord Nityananda to attain spiritual peace and love for the Lord.

Sri Nityananda Prabhu

Shrila Narottama Das Goswami, one of the tallest figures in the Vaishnava iconography also said in many of his "kirtan" compositions that one has to have the mercy of Lord Sri Nityananda to attain the Lotus feet of Sri Radhakrishna, the ultimate goal of a devotee. It was at his age of 32 years that Lord Nityananda came in contact with Mahaprabhu who was then twenty years old. By that time Lord Nityananda was married to Jahnava Devi and Vasudha Devi, daughters of Suryadas Sarakhel, brother of Gouridas Pandit, an intimate associate of Mahaprabhu and spiritual master of Shyamananda Pandit. The meeting between the two created a bond the like of which is seldom found on the mortal plane. They appeared in this age of Kali like what Krishna and Balaram did in Dwapara. With a complexion of gleaming gold and having a deep, melodious voice, Lord Nityananda showed signs of devotion and spirituality at an early age. He excelled in enacting the "Lilas" (pastimes) of Srikrishna and Sri Ramachandra. This made him extremely adorable in the neighborhood. In the company of Mahaprabhu, he manifested an interesting and highly revealing "Lila" before Sachimata. As the two of them were having lunch one day on Mahaprabhu's invitation, Sachimata had a vision of their transforming into a couple of very young boys, holding "Sankha", "Chakra", "Gada" and "Padma" in their four hands. Sachimata fainted on seeing this.

Lord Nityananda's most famous act of delivering sinners was his gift of Harinam to the utterly depraved Jagai and Madhai, two brothers belonging to a Brahmin family in the Navadwip region. An inebriated Madhai had struck him with the sharp edge of an earthen pitcher and he was bleeding profusely in the forehead. Instead of getting angry or vengeful, Lord Nityananda sang out to the effect that he would not desist from giving love even though he had been badly hurt. In Srichaitanyacharitamrita, Shrila Krishnadas Kaviraja mentions, "Because He is intoxicated by ecstatic love and is an incarnation of mercy, he does not distinguish between the good and the bad".

The Chida-dadhi Mahotsav of Panihati is another famous event where Raghunath Das Goswami got a chance to serve all the devotees and attain the service of Lord Sri Nityanand Prabhu. Many devotees sat on the ground surrounding the Lord, Raghunatha Das offered his obeisances by falling prostrate at a distant place, and a servant of the Lord pointed out, "There is Raghunatha Das, offering You obeisances."Hearing this, Lord said, "You are a thief. Now you have come to see Me. Come here, come here. Today I shall punish you, "the Lord called him, but Raghunatha Das did not go near the Lord. Then the Lord forcibly caught him and placed His lotus feet upon RaghunathaDas's head. "Make a festival and feed all My associates yogurt and chipped rice." Hearing this, Raghunatha Das was greatly pleased.

When chipped rice had been served to everyone, Lord Nityananda Prabhu, in meditation, brought Lord Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. From each and every pot, Lord Nityananda Prabhu took one morsel of chipped rice and pushed it into the mouth of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu as a joke. In this way, Lord Nityananda was walking through all the groups of eaters, and all the Vaisnavastanding there were seeing the fun. And, Raghunath Das was the only one who witnessed Mahaprabhu’s presence.

Gaudiya Mission leaves no stones unturned in celebrating the auspicious appearance day of Nityananda Prabhu. From the eve (adhibasa) and special prayer sessions to kirtan and spiritual discourses and distribution of "Mahaprasadam", the celebration spans every aspect of his beatific life at their headquarters at Baghbazar as well as branches all over the world.

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