(An Offering of Flowers)
Bhakti Rakshaka Sridhara Deva Goswami
(The following Bengali poem was composed by Srila Sridhara Maharaja in glorification of his spiritual master, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakura, and first published in the Dainik Nadiya Prakash newspaper on Sunday, 11th June, 1927)
jakhan jakhan dharmera glani
adharama-abhi udglana haya
sadhu pavitrana, dushkriti vinasha
dharama sthapane ei he udaya
“Whenever and wherever there is a decline in religious practice, and a predominant rise of irreligion—at that time I descend Myself. To deliver the pious and to annihilate the miscreants, as well as to re-establish the principles of religion, I Myself appear.”
(ei) shri gita kathita, bhagavati vani
saphala kariya udita aji
shri gauda gagane, aveshavatara
vitariya nava kirana raji
These words, uttered by the Lord in Bhagavad-gita, have been fulfilled today. On the horizon of Gauda-desha an empowered avatara has appeared, distributing new rays of light everywhere.
mugdha jagata, chakita nayane
bhatiche nirava bhakati he
dekhe nai kabhu, shune nai kabhu
bhakata vatsala erupa he
The entire world is enchanted and awe-struck. Such devotional sentiments and lustre have rendered all speechless. One who is so compassionate to the devotees has never been seen nor heard of before.
ani puratana, sanatana dhana
vitarana tar e nava chande
kabe ke kareche, jivera lagiya
kahara erupa parana kande
Bringing that wealth which is ancient and eternal, that personality, who is like a new moon, distributes it to one and all. Who has ever given such benefit to the living entities? Whose heart has ever cried out in pity like this?
a-chandale diya, preme adhikara
mahaprabhura maha-vadanya lila
khauya para bhava, vahana kariya
bhajana karana e kona khela
Just as in Mahaprabhu’s most magnanimous pastimes, he gives even the Chandalas the qualification to receive divine love. It is simply his pastime to taste the highest ecstasy and carry that everywhere for the purpose of bhajana.
nitya yukta kare, yoga moksha sada
ami e tadera vahana kari
pratijna gitaya, dhareche akara
kahara dayaya aha re mari
“I provide for those who are eternally engaged on the path of yoga and liberation.” This promise in the Gita has now been taken shape. Who else is as merciful? I faint to think of it.
apane achari, sakala anga
hate dhari sabe shikhache aja
pashanda dalane, ajeya teja
dhandhiya nayana karicha virajata
He personally practices all the angas of bhakti and today he holds hands with all those that he teaches. He defeats the atheists with his invincible power, dazzling the eyes of all.
pache bhavishyate, tava anugate
kona kale keha kare akramana
(tai) kari akarshana, shakra astra-gana
kariteche ebe saba nirasana
Lest in future anyone attacks your surrendered servants at any time, you will attract all the mighty weapons of their enemies and render them ineffective.
adure se dina, nikhila bhuvana
anjali purita kusuma kare
kritanja hridaye, rajiva-charana
karibe pujana bhakati bhave
That day is not far off, when the entire world will offer you prayers with handfuls of flowers. With a grateful heart, they will fold their hands and offer worship to your lotus feet in a mood of devotion.
phalgu tyagi jara, sadhu bale tara
jagate vidita chila tata dina
rupa-anugata, se yukta vairagya
tara dhvaja tumi karile ujjina
For so long now the world has known only pseudo-renunciates and those that call themselves sadhus. But the followers of Sri Rupa have come to propound yukta-vairagya and you have come to fly their flag.
bhajana sopana, daiva-varnashrama
shastra-vidhi mata sthapana karile
smarta jada-vada, kari nirasana
ati-martya tava lila prakashile
You have come to establish daivi-varnashrama, which is a stepping-stone towards bhajana, and the process of following the scriptural injunctions. Rejecting materialistic Smarta-vada, you manifest your supra-mundane pastimes.
bhoga yoga tyaga, adi yata patha
mayara chalana kevala se saba
shuddha bhakati jivatmara vritti
sthapile se mata projjhita kaitava
The various paths of exploitation, the process of yoga, austerities etc. are all simply Maya’s tricks. Pure devotion is the occupational duty of the jivatma. Establishing this principle, you discard all sorts of deception.
shri-murti shri-nama, shri-grantha vyakhyana
bhogera tandava e saba dvare
vyepe chila desha, kari hunhunkare
hanile vraja tahara shire
In the name of deity worship, the holy name and scriptural explanations, everyone was engaged in a suicidal dance of material enjoyment. The country was in a total state of self-deception. But by your loud roaring, you struck its very head with a thunderbolt.
vyabhichara bhara, e dhara dhame
kona loka hote asiyacha he
sakali shodhiya, karicha nutana
sakalei bhangiya gadicha he
From which planet have you come from to appear in this degraded world, which is full of corruption and immorality? Purifying and correcting everything, you are making them anew. By breaking everything, you are rebuilding it again.
nahi jani kona, sukritira bale
peyechi smarana u charanatale
kamana ekhana, he dina sharana
pada chada yena nahi kona kale
I do not know by the power of what sukriti I am able to remember him and take shelter at his feet. O shelter of the poor, my only desire now is that I may never be separated from your lotus feet.
kshanerkera klesha, yatha kare nasha
kata shuni tara yasha-gatha gana
anadi kalera, ashru muchaiya
ditecha jivera nityananda sthana
He eradicates momentary tribulations and I hear so many songs singing his glories. By wiping away the tears accumulated from time immemorial, he is giving the living entities the position of eternal happiness.
ye dana ditecha, ki bujhiba mora
avrita nayana avidyara bale
mahima tomara, jane muktakula
tava yasho-gana goloka-mandale
How can we understand the charity that you are distributing, when our eyes are covered by the power of ignorance? Your glories are known by liberated souls and songs praising you are sung in the realm of Goloka.
devata-vanchita, o pada kamale
renu rupe sthana mage e dasa
yogyata vichare, se gunata nai
tava ahaituki kripa matra asha
This servant asks for the position of a speck of dust at your lotus feet, which are worshipped by the demigods. When I consider my eligibility, I find that I do not even have any qualities. My only hope is your causeless mercy.
ei bhiksha ara, shri charane magi
purave vasana vishvasa mora
sada nishkapate, guru-gaura-seva
karya tahate thaki yena bhora
This is what I beg and request at your holy feet, as it is my firm belief that my desire will be fulfilled – may I always remain absorbed in serving Sri Guru and Sri Gaura without duplicity.
sadachara yuta, brahmana pandita
ghare janamiya chila abhimana
eke dekhe haya, tulana na haya
asaman-jamin bheda vidyamana
I was proud of possessing proper behavior and being born in the home of a brahmana scholar. Now I see there is no comparison. They are different and exist poles apart from each other.
vaµsha vidya dhana, rupa abhimana
kariya harana deha ei vara
jivane marane, u charana vine
nahi jane dasa ramendra-sundara
Kindly bless me by removing my pride in having a noble birth, knowledge, wealth or beauty. In life or death, this servant, Ramendra-sundara knows nothing except your lotus feet.