Back of the Book
The teachings of Sri Caitanyadeva are both very simple and very deep. Simple in that even uneducated and foolish persons can easily enter this dharma, and deep in the sense that greatly learned persons, logicians and those expert in scriptural erudition will also be able to understand it by deeply contemplating His teachings. This book is the very essence of the Vedas, Vedanta, Puranas, Ramayana, Mahabharata, Gita, the six Vedic philosophies, and the Tantras. Not only this, but whatever good instructions are there in either the Indian or foreign religious systems will also be found in this book, and instructions which are not found in other religions may be obtained here also. Whether one is in family life or a renunciate, whether a child or an elderly person, whether a young man or woman, or even an old man or woman, whether one is with or without caste, established in any Vedic social system (varna) or not, anyone can easily attain the topmost auspiciousness simply by accepting the teachings of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.
To The Third Hindi edition
The founder and president of the Gaudiya Vedanta Samiti, my most worshipful Gurudeva, nitya-lila-pravista om visnupdda Sri Sri Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja, has written the following in his Introduction to the book named The Teachings of Sriman Mahaprabhu, "Sri Bhaktivinoda Thakura, by manifesting the principles of dasa-mula-tattva, has brought the Gaudrya Vaisnava world to another age. But not only for the Gaudiya Vaisnavas; rather, he has given a new outlook for the whole philosophical world in general." Of the books that Sri Bhaktivinoda Thakura has written, taking shelter of this dasa-mula-tattva; the three books Jaiva-dharma, Sri Cauanya-sihsamrta and Teachings of Lord Caitanya are the topmost.
The great swan-like devotee paramahamsa om visnupa-da Sri Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Prabhupada has also written, "In the teachings of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, firstly pramana-tattva has been established, then upon the foundation of the self-evident and all-perfect Vedic sound vibrations, nine philosophical truths (prameya-tattva), which are established by that pramana, have been produced. The nine methods of formulating a conclusion such as pratyohsa (direct sense perception), anumdna (inference), upamdna (comparison), arsa (statements of various saintly persons) abhava (conclusion obtained by absence or omittance), sambhava (inclusion), aitihya (historical evidence), cesta (indication) and arthapatti (deduction of an unseen cause by hypothesis) are to a limited degree somewhat helpful in drawing a conclusion within this world. Yet apart from the process of hearing divine sound (srauta-pramana), the processes dependent upon the fallible material senses remain completely unable to help us regarding the understanding of spiritual subject matter, which is beyond matter. The endeavour to equate the material with the transcendental proves to be an obstruction in the path of submissive hearing; that is due to lack of surrender in the hearer. The neutral searchers of the truth will accept the Srimad-Bhagavatam as the spotless Vedic evidence and the one and only non-duplicious commentary of the Brahma-sutra, and thus they may then advance on the path of submissive hearing. Only then will they be able to properly understand the teachings imparted within this book.
Jagad-guru (the universal spiritual master), Srila Saccidananda Bhaktivinoda Thakura has also written, "Those persons who have unflinching faith in SrI Caitanyadeva and who also have faith in the devotion that is found in the shelter of the holy name are the only ones qualified to read this book. Of all practitioners, the topmost sadhaka is one who believes that of all the limbs of devotion, only the shelter of the chanting of the holy names can deliver complete perfection. This teaching of Lord Caitanya is available in His Sri Siksastaka. The nectarine teachings of Lord Caitanya are the essence of all scriptures and the only supreme wealth for all the jivas."
Gaudiya Vedanta Samiti has already printed the first two sections of the book Jaiva-dharma in the Bengali language, and the complete book has been presented in Hindi. By the one-pointed endeavours and ideal service mood of the sec- retary of the Gaudiya Vedanta Samiti, Tridandi Svaml Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Maharaja, the Hindi edition of the book Sri Cauanya-sihsamrta has now been published by Sri Kesavaji Gaudiya Matha, Mathura. By this, the educated sections of the Hindi knowing public will be especially benefitted. This book was first published in an unbroken manner in our monthly spiritual periodical Sri Bhagavat-patrika from the seventh year, ninth edition until the eighteenth year, twelfth edition. This was the first edition. This book has also been printed and preached in English and Telagu by Sri Sarasvati Prabhupada, from Sri Caitanya Matha and Sri Gaudiya Matha.
The Gaudiya Vedanta Acarya Sri Baladeva Vidyabhusana Prabhu, at the time of writing his commentary on the Vedanta named Sri Goviruia-bhasya, has taken the essence of the philosophical conclusions from the lotus feet of his predecessor spiritual master Sriman Madhvacarya, and placed them in his own book named Sri Prameya-ratnavali. It is written in the verse sri madhvah praha that Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu has accepted these nine prameyas as given by Sri Madhva as instructions for all the jivas of this world. Sri Bhaktivinoda Thakura, following the philosophical conclusions given by Sri Baladeva Vidyabhusana Prabhu and by Sri jiva Gosvami in his Sat-sandarbhas, has put these ten root philosophical points (sri dasa-mula) inside the verse amnaya prdha. Afterwards he has written Vaisnava-siddhanta-mdla and Teachings of Lord Caitanya, and placed the teachings of Sriman Mahaprabhu concerning srt dasa-mula-tattva within them. After this he wrote the book named Jaiva-dharma and again presented this point in an extended manner. He has described sri dasa-muia-tattva in other books written by himself, including Tattva-sutra, Sri Gauranga-smarana-man-gala-stotra, Sri Harinama cintamani and other books.
This book, Sri Caitanya-siksamrta, was first published by Sri Bhaktivinoda Thakura in 1886. After this edition was sold out, it was published again in 1905, after being completely re-edited and redesigned. In this book, a special emphasis was also placed on the sri dasa-muia-tattva in regards to sambandha, abhideya and prayojana-tattvas. In order to fully study the essence of the teachings of Lord Caitanya, it is necessary that one also read Sri Siksasta-ka and Sri Cauanya-caritamrta. Reading books like Sri Cauanya-candrodaya-nataha, Sri Caitanya-bhagavata and the Sat-sandarbhas written by various Gaudiya acaryas will also be extremely helpful. In the pastimes of Sriman Mahaprabhu as a married person, the Lord taught the jivas the necessity of performing harinama-sankirtana. All of His teachings that He gave after He took the renounced order (sannyasa) are found in His instructions to Sri Sarvabhauma Battacarya, Sri Raya Ramananda, Sri Venkata Batra, Sri Rupa Gosvami, Sri Sanataria Gosvami, Sri Ragupati Upadhyaya, Sri Vallabha Batra and Sri Prakasananda Sarasvati.
In the eight rainfalls of Sri Caitanya-siksamrta, there are discussions on both ordinary and pure religious life, the secondary rules concerning religious behaviour, vaidhi-bhakti, raganuga-bhakti, bhava-bhakti, prema-bhakti and a deliberation on rasa. The explanation is both condensed and elaborate. The conclusions are thick with the very essence of spirituality. In order to understand the system of Sriman Mahaprabhu's teachings, there is an absolute necessity of understanding the philosophy of acintya-bhedabheda-tattva.
The embodiment of all rasa (raso vai sah), lila-purusottama Sri Krsnacandra, is the enjoyer of nama-bhajana. A vision of the Lord's eternal eight-fold pastimes are possible by such congregational chanting of the holy names. The remembrance of the pastimes of Krsna is achieved by the loud chanting of the holy names; at such a time one may perform the chanting of the holy names in solitude. This is presented in the teachings of Sri Sarasvati Thakura, otherwise known as Sri Varsabhanavi-dayita-dasa.
In 'sri Caitanya-sik~amrta, as in the books Teachings of Lord Caitanya and [aiva-dharma, there are descriptions of sri dasa-mula-tattva. Sri Bhaktivinoda Thakura has enabled us to draw a comparison of sanatana-dharma with the irreligion and pretension of the attached fruitive workers, pseudo-logicians and yogis. Because he has presented the confidential conclusions of the Vedas, Vedanta, Upanisads, Gita and Bhagavata in simple and easy to understand language, this book is supremely and astonishingly authoritative. LikeJaiva-dharma and other books written by Thakura, this book is also condensed, pleasant to read and easily understandable. Thus due to its indirect nuances of expressions and language, it is also very dear to the inquisitive and rasika readers. This is my strong belief.
There is no real need of further explanation of this book, 'sri Cauanya-sihsamrta. My Gurudeva, Srila Sarasvati Thakura and Sri Bhaktivinoda Thakura have already described the special glories of this book in their Introductions. I understand that their good wishes and blessings are the only way for the jivas in this world to attain real auspiciousness.
To the First English Edition
First of all I offer dandavat-pranama at the lotus feet of my most worshipful Gurudeva, nitya-lilla pravista om vishnupada astottara-sata Sri Sri Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja. It is by his causeless mercy and inspiration that we are able to offer this English translation of Sri Caitanya-siksamrta into his lotus hands. The original was composed in the Bengali language by Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura in 1886, and almost one hundred years after this, in 1985, our Gurudeva had offered the Hindi edition of this same book to his spiritual master, nitya-lila pravista om visnupada Sri Sri Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja.
This English edition has some special features I would like to draw the attention of the readers to. Firstly, Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura for the most part has not given translations of the verses that he has used to support the points made in this Sri Caitanya-sihsamrta. Sri Bhagavata Arka-marici-mala, which is an explanation of the Srimad-Bhagavatam itself, was composed by Thakura in 1901. In this book, Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura has given his own translations, and wherever possible, I used the original translations from the Hindi edition of that book published by my worshipful spiritual master, Sri Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja. In the cases where such translations were not available, we took translations from GVP, who publishes the English translations of the books of our spiritual master. In some cases translations from there were unavailable, so we used translations from BBT.
In the Hindi translation of our Gurudeva, the verses were put on the same page as the articles, but due to the size of the verses (with added translations), we put the verses at the end of each chapter as endnotes. This was done with the intention of easing the reading of the text.
We also added the very valuable Foreword and Preface of Srila Gurudeva, Srlla Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja, and Srila Bhaktivedanta Va mana Gosvami Maharaja. These were given in the Hindi edition also. They are very valuable to understanding the contribution of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura, In the Sixth Stream of the Sixth Rainfall of this book, again verses were used to describe the eternal eight-fold pastimes of the Divine Couple, Sri: Radha-Krsna, but no translations were given. I took the Hindi translations of the great scholar Sri Bhaktivedanta Madhusudana Gosvami Maharaja that he had personally composed in his translation of the Sanskrit work of Sri Dhyanacandra Gosvami Maharaja named Sri Sri Radha-Krsna-asta-kaliya-lila-smarana-krama-paddhatih. I am indebted to him for his permission to use those verses as well as for his constant help during the translation of this book.
I am also indebted to Sri Prahladananda dast (USA) and Sri Va nama tt dasa from Christchurch, New Zealand, who both did invaluable work in the editing of this edition. After the disappearance of our Gurudeva, being unable to find a competent and reliable editor I had stopped work on the project. It was Srila Gurudeva, working through Vanaman Prabhu, who gave me renewed enthusiasm to continue. Thanks to Karuna-mayi dast from Brisbane for checking my translation. Also to the host of devotees in Sri Krsna-Balaram Temple who helped with proofreading, including Maha-mantra dasa, jayasri dasi, Krsna-mayi deiSt, Lalita Kisori dasi, Damayanti dast and others. Also to Santi: dast and Arjuna-sakha dasa for layout and Devaki dasl for the cover. Also to Nandinl dasi for indexing verses and Makhesvari dast for helping with editing and so many other services. May Sri Guru and Gauranga bless them all.
Due to the size of the book and inexperience of the production team, there must necessarily be some inadvertent errors. We hope the generous readers will forgive that, and please inform us of the faults so that the next edition may be more up to standard. This book contains a veritable ocean of bhakti-siddhanta, and who reads it, their life is successful. This is the blessing given within the pages of this book by Sri Bhaktivinoda Thakura himself.
To The Third Hindi Edition
By the causeless mercy and inspiration of my most worshipful Gurudeva, nitya-lila-pravista om visnupada Sri Sri Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja, today, on the occasion of the 500th anniversary of the appearance of Sri Sacinandana Caitanya Mahaprabhu, we are presenting Sri Caitanya-sihsamrta. Sri Caitanyadeva is the purifier of Kali-yuga, the source of all incarnations, and is non-different from Svayam Bhagavan Sri Vrajendra-nandana, and this book is a collection of His essential teachings.
Presenting this book, Sri Cauanya-sihsamrta, to the Hindi speaking populace, I am feeling immense bliss. The original book is in Bengali. The writer of this book is Sri Saccidananda Bhaktivinoda Thakura, a dear eternal associate of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, also known as the Seventh Gosvami, who again caused the flow of pure devotion in the modern age just as Bagiratha Maharaja brought the flow of the Ganga again to this earth planet in ancient times. Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura has descended to this world to fulfill the internal desire of Srtman Mahaprabhu, which was to reinaugurate the preaching and practice of harinama-sankirtana and the flow of suddha-bhakti on this planet in the modern age. On the 2nd of September, 1838, he appeared in an educated and aristocratic family in the village named Viranagara within the jurisdiction of Sridhama Navadvipa, near to Mayapura, in West Bengal. He left this world in Calcutta on the 23rd of june, 1914. If he had not appeared within this world, then both the place of Lord Caitanya's appearance, Sridhama Mayapura, and His immaculate teachings on pure devotion would have been covered forever. Thus the Gaudiya Vaisnava world remains eternally in his debt. Because of Sri Bhaktivinoda Thakura, we are hearing the congregational chanting of the holy names in every corner of the world, and the universe has been flooded in the towering waves of devotion for Sri Gaura-Krsna. He is the Vyasa of sri caitanya-lila, and he is non other than jagad-guru, the universal teacher. He composed more than one hundred devotional literatures in English, Hindi, Bengali, Sanskrit, Oriya and Urdu languages. Sri Cauanya-sihsamrta is prominent amongst those compositions.
The founder of the Gaudiya Vedanta Samiti and the many, many temples founded within India under its auspice, the protector of the Gaudiya sampradaya, the lion-like acarya, my most worshipful Gurudeva, nitya-1ila pravista om visnupada Sri Sri Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvaml Maharaja, apart from writing his own literatures also re-published the books of Snla Bhaktivinoda Thakura in the Bengali language. It was his strong desire that the books of all our Vaisna- va acaryas, but especially the books of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura, be translated from Bengali and Sanskrit into the national language of India, namely Hindi. By this, the pure prema-dharma that was practised and preached by Sriman Mahaprabhu could then also be practised and preached by the Hindi speaking population. For this reason he established the Sri Kesavaji Gaudiya Matha in Mathura on the 13th of December, 1956, and from there he began the publication of a monthly spiritual journal named Sri Bhagavat-patrika. It is by his special mercy and inspiration that translations of the books of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura such as Jaiva-dharma, Sri Caitanya-sihsamrta and Teachings of Lord Caitanya were presented in this monthly magazine. Out of these, the famous books like Jaiva-dharma and Teachings of Lord Caitanya have already been independently published in the Hindi language. Today, by the mercy of that great maha-purusa; the Hindi edition of Sri Caitanya-siksamrta is also being placed in the lotus hands of the readers. You should understand the first edition to be that which was already placed in our monthly magazine.
The teachings of Sri Caitanyadeva are both very simple and very deep. Simple in that even uneducated and foolish persons can easily enter this dharma, and deep in the sense that greatly learned persons, logicians and those expert in scriptural erudition will also be able to understand it by deeply contemplating His teachings. This book is the very essence of the Veda, Vedanta, Purana, Ramayana, Mahabharata, Gita, the six Vedic philosophies, and the Tantras. Not only this, but whatever good instructions are there in either the Indian or foreign religious systems will also be found in this book, and instructions which are not found in other religions may be obtained here also. Whether one is in family life or a renunciate, whether a child or an elderly person, whether a young man or woman, or even an old man or woman, whether one is with or without caste, established in any Vedic social system (vema) or not, anyone can easily attain the topmost auspiciousness simply by accepting the teachings of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.
My elder Godbrother, the president and current acarya of the Gaudiya Vedanta Samiti, parivrajahacarya Sri Bhak-tivedanta Va mana Maharaja, is deeply attached to Vedic knowledge and a very powerful acarya. He has presented, and is continuing to produce many of his own books, as well as the books of the previous acaryas, in English, Bengali and the Sanskrit languages. By his special mercy and support, the Hindi edition of Sri Caitanya-siksamrta is being produced. It is my earnest prayer at his lotus feet that he may present this book into the lotus hands of our most worshipful spiritual master.
I am most indebted to various devotees, who by their hard labour in terms of proofreading and layout, helped in the publication of this book. Those devotees include Tridandi Svami Srimad Bhaktivedanta Padmanabha Maharaja, Sriyut Om Prakasa Brajabasi (M.L.L.B), Srrrnan Subhananda Brahmacari, Srtman Navin Krsna Brahmacari, Sriman Prernananda Brahmacart, Srtrnan Krsna-prema Brahmacart, Sriman Raghunatha dasa Brahmacari and Srlrnan Sudanya Brahmacan. Special thanks to Srlman Siva-prakasa Pachauri-ji for all his assistance in the printing. May Gurudeva bless them all.
I am also supremely indebted to one family who helped not only in the production of this book, but also in other books, and indeed, in all of the various service-minded endeavours of our society by offering wealth and all other assistance. And those who gave me enthusiasm and inspiration, who are without even the faintest smell of desire for reputation or fame, supremely desireless, who are immensely compassionate, who gave their bodies, mind, wealth and very life simply out of affection for Hari, Guru and the Vaisnavas. They offered everything in the name of Sriman Mahaprabhu. Even though they are situated in family life, they are the ideal personifications of appropriate renunciation (yukta-vairagya), engrossed in bhajana, more tolerant than trees, and offer all respect to others but do not expect any in return. May SrI Sacinandana Gaurahari shower His special mercy upon them.
It is my strong belief that both the spiritual practitioners Csadhakas) thirsty for devotion and the impartial members of learned society will all deeply appreciate this book. Those persons will, by reading this book again and again, certainly enter the pure prema-dharma as practised and preached by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. May our most worshipful Sri Gurudeva, whose only unhappiness is seeing the unhappiness of others and who is the personification of the Lord's mercy, as well as the most compassionate Sri Caitanyadeva, who is Krsna endowed with the mood and complexion of Sri Radha, be pleased and bestow upon me the qualification so that I may be engaged in the service of fulfilling their most cherished desires. This is my only earnest prayer at their lotus feet.
Whatever the son of Mother Sad, Sri Caitanyadeva, gave to the souls (jivas) of this world after appearing in Sridhama Navadvtpa, Mayapura, in the form of sweet instructions and pure character, are called Sri Caitanya-sihsamrta, or the nectarean instructions of Sri Caitanya. For all the jivas of the world, these instructions are the topmost nectarean donation. Some evidence from the scriptures is mentioned to support the philosophical conclusions (siddhantas) that are described in this book; by seeing these, the doubts the reader has in the subject matter will not remain. Our humble entreaty to the respectable readers is that they should study this book with special endeavour, and their lives will become fully successful.
Upon full deliberation on the contents it will become completely clear that this Sri Caitanya-siksamrta is the very essence of all the revealed scriptures. The confidential tattvas that have been discovered in the scriptures like the Rg, Sama, Atharva and Yajur Vedas, as well as the Vedanta, have been collected and given in this Sri Cauanya-sihsamrta. In this book, one can find the true essence of the auspicious instructions given in the eighteen Puranas, twenty dharma-sastras, the six philosophical theories (sad-darsana), the Tantras and the Mahabharata. All have been presented in Sri Caitanya-siksamrta in a philosophical manner. All the various Indian and foreign philosophies or religions that are currently being practised are fully included within this Siksamrta in a complete manner. Whatever instructions that one cannot find in either Indian or foreign literature can be found presented in this most agreeable book.
The dharma which is presented in this Sri Caitanya-siksamrta is exceedingly simple, and yet also very profound. It is said to be exceedingly simple in that this dharma is intrinsic and natural for even the foolish, illiterate and un-intelligent persons, yet it is also said to be profound in the sense that this supremely beneficial dharma is also discussed in this book for those persons learned in the scriptures and expert in logic and discrimination.
Apart from this Sri Siksamrta, it is impossible to find another book where this most excellent dharma, which is applicable for all types of persons, has been more elaborately and more completely discussed. If any learned persons take a position of neutrality [upon reading this book], then they can become qualified for this parama-dharma. Respectable persons situated within the Vedic system of varnasrama and also those who are outside of this system, are all eligible for the instructions given within this book. Foolish persons addicted to the path of fruitive material enjoyment (karmis) and those of twisted intellect who taste these instructions with faith will also be able to cross the ocean of material existence. Also, learned scholars of tattva possessed of broad intellect who neutrally study these instructions will be attracted and will be able to attain the supreme destination very easily. Persons bound by various other theories can come to life by these instructions, and abandoning their twisted faith and frustrations, they can attain a broad and generous nature. It is for this reason that I have described this Sri Caitanya-siksamrta as the topmost nectarean gift for the jivas.
Those persons who are bereft of sraddha, or faith in transcendental subject matters, will not have taste in accepting these instructions. This is completely true. Still, in regards to such people, because of some piety they will accrue by reading this, they will become qualified for these nectarean instructions in a future birth.
Some people are preaching irreligion, falsehood, sinful, illicit behaviour and illogical conclusions in the name of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Many people who are devoid of any power of deliberation and absorbed in material enjoyment, mistakenly consider these to be the supremely pure instructions of Sriman Mahaprabhu and are thus cheated of His actual instructions. For such people, we simply expel sorrowful breaths and lament. May Sriman Mahaprabhu be kind upon them and deliver them.
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