Commentary by Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja
More than five hundred years ago, the Supreme Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu sat with His intimate devotee Sri Ramananda Raya on the banks of the river Godavari. For the benefit of all living beings, the Lord inquired from him about the ultimate goal of life, as if ignorant.
Sri Ramananda's initial response did not satisfy Lord Caitanya, who probed for a deeper answer. Again and again He rejected the goal Sri Ramananda put forth, calling it external. Finally, when Sri Ramananda touched upon the natural, eternal religion of the soul, the Lord was somewhat satisfied. His subsequent inquiries continued to depths that astounded and delighted His devotee, who replied wonderfully to each of them.
|Publisher:||Gaudiya Vedanta Publications|
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About the Author
In February, 1946, he met his gurudeva, Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajñana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja, and his life of complete and exemplary dedication to Gaudiya Vaisnavism, or the path of krsna-bhakti in the line of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, began to manifest.
He accompanied his gurudeva on his extensive preaching tours throughout India, actively assisting him in propagating the teachings of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu for the eternal benefit of the living entities in this world. This included regularly hosting the thousands of pilgrims attending the yearly circumambulation of Sri Navadvipa-dhama, the appearance place of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, and Sri Vrndavana-dhama, the appearance place of Sri Krsna.
His gurudeva had instructed him to translate the writings of prominent Gaudiya Vaisnavas into Hindi, a task he assiduously assumed throughout his entire life and which resulted in the publication of nearly fifty Hindi sacred texts. Later, most of these invaluable masterpieces were translated into English and other major languages of the world.
For many years, he traveled throughout India to spread the message of Gaudiya Vaisnavism, and it was for this end, also, that in 1996, he journeyed abroad. During the next fourteen years, he circled the globe more than thirty times. Whether he was in India or abroad, his preaching always bore the distinctive characteristic of boldly unmasking any misconception obscuring the specific purposes of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s advent, in strict adherence to the desire of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada and in perfect congruence with the conceptions of Srila Rupa Gosvami, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s foremost follower. Thus, in present times, in upholding the glorious tenets of the Gaudiya sampradaya, he performed the function of a true acarya.
At the age of ninety years, on December 29, 2010, he concluded his pastimes in this world at Cakratirtha, in Sri Jagannatha Puri-dhama. The following day, in Sri Navadvipa-dhama, Sri Gaurasundara’s fully empowered emissary, the very embodiment of His unique compassion, was given samadhi. He will never cease to reside in his divine instructions and in the hearts of those who are devoted to him.