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Dearmost to Krishna

Śrīla Bhakti Vinod Ṭhākur’s commentary on the tenth verse of Śrī Upadeśāmṛta.

The following is a translation of Śrīla Bhakti Vinod Ṭhākur’s poetic Bengali translation, Bhāṣā, and Bengali prose commentary, Pīyūṣa-varṣiṇī-vṛtti, on Śrīla Rūpa Goswāmī Prabhu’s Śrī Upadeśāmṛta.

These texts were published in Śrī Gauḍīya Darśan, in Volume 2, Issue 11, 10 June 1957,  Volume 2, Issue 12, 12 July 1957, and Volume 3, Issue 1, 12 August 1957. In combination with Śrīla Bhakti Siddhānta Saraswatī Ṭhākur’s Anuvṛtti, they were also published as a book from Śrī Chaitanya Sāraswat Maṭh by Śrīla Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswāmī Mahārāj in 1970.

The Upadeśāmṛta of Śrīla Rūpa Goswāmī is also extremely good for us; we published Upadeśāmṛta before.”

Śrīla Bhakti Sundar Govinda Dev-Goswāmī Mahārāj,
Affectionate Guidance

Śrī Upadeśāmṛta Verse Ten

karmibhyaḥ parito hareḥ priyatayā vyaktiṁ yayur jñāninas
tebhyo jñāna-vimukta-bhakti-paramāḥ premaika-niṣṭhās tataḥ
tebhyas tāḥ paśu-pāla-paṅkaja-dṛśas tābhyo ’pi sā rādhikā
preṣṭhā tadvad iyaṁ tadīya-sarasī tāṁ nāśrayet kaḥ kṛtī [10]

jñāninaḥ–Knowers of impersonal Brahman vyaktiṁ yayuḥ–are known [to be] priyatayā–more dear paritaḥ–in all respects hareḥ–to the Lord karmibhyaḥ–than performers of material activities. [More dear] tebhyaḥ–than them [are] bhakti-paramāḥ–devotees vimukta–completely free jñāna–from knowledge of Brahman. [More dear] tataḥ–than them [are] niṣṭhāḥ–those who are fixed eka–exclusively prema–in divine love. [More dear] tebhyaḥ–than them [are] paṅkaja-dṛśaḥ–the lotus-eyed tāḥ paśu-pāla–cowherd women, [and more dear] tābhyaḥ api–than even them [is] sā rādhikā–Rādhikā. iyaṁ–This sarasī–pond tadīya–of Hers [is] tadvad–similarly preṣṭhā–dear [to the Lord]. kaḥ kṛtī–What fortunate soul na āśrayet–would not take shelter tāṁ–of it? [10]

More dear to Kṛṣṇa, in all respects, than performers of pious deeds are knowers of Brahman, more dear than them are devotees completely free from knowledge of Brahman, more dear than them are devotees fixed exclusively in divine love, more dear than them are the gopīs, and more dear than them is Śrī Rādhikā. Her pond is similarly dear to Kṛṣṇa. What fortunate soul would not take shelter there?

Bhāṣā

chid-anveṣī jñānī jaḍa-karmī ha-ite śreṣṭha
jñāni-chara bhakta tad apekṣā kṛṣṇa-preṣṭha [1]

Knowers of Brahman who seek impersonal spirit are higher than those who are engaged in material activities. Devotees who are free from knowledge of Brahman are more dear to Kṛṣṇa than them.

prema-niṣṭha bhakta tad apekṣā śreṣṭha jāni
gopī-gaṇe tad apekṣā śreṣṭha bali’ māni [2]

We know that devotees fixed in divine love are higher than them, and that the gopīs are higher than all other devotees.

sarva-gopī śreṣṭhā rādhā kṛṣṇa-preṣṭhā sadā
tā̐hāra sarasī nitya kṛṣṇera prītidā [3]

Rādhā is the highest of all the gopīs. She is forever Kṛṣṇa’s favourite, and Her lake always pleases Kṛṣṇa.

e hena premera sthāna govardhana-taṭe
āśraya nā kare kebā kṛtī niṣkapaṭe [4]

What fortunate soul would not take shelter in that abode of divine love at the base of Govardhan Hill with all sincerity?

Pīyūṣa-varṣiṇī-vṛtti

Devotees who reside on the bank of Rādhā Kuṇḍa are higher and more dear to Kṛṣṇa than all other types of practitioners that exist throughout the world. This is being shown in the tenth verse. Knowers of Brahman who seek impersonal spirit are more dear to Kṛṣṇa than all types of persons engaged in pious deeds. Devotees who are free from knowledge of Brahman are more dear to Kṛṣṇa than all types of realised souls who seek liberation. Amongst all types of devotees, devotees fixed in divine love are most dear to Kṛṣṇa. Amongst all such devotees, the Vraja-gopīs are extremely dear to Kṛṣṇa, and amongst all the gopīs, Śrī Rādhikā is the most dear. As Rādhikā is dear to Kṛṣṇa, so Her lake is also most dear to Him. Therefore, those who have great spiritual fortune will reside at Śrī Rādhā Kuṇḍa and serve Śrī Kṛṣṇa during the eight periods of the day.

Reference

Read Śrīla Bhakti Vinod Ṭhākur’s commentary on Śrī Upadeśāmṛta: verses onetwothreefour, fivesixseveneight, and nine.

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