Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das
Srimad Bhagavatam is called the “king of all spiritual books” (Grantha Raja) for good reason. Within this triguna-free, transcendental treatise, the amala-purana, which showcases the absolutely selfless, divine love of Srimati Radharani, one can find all the sweet, majestic and beautiful truths about the sadhana and sadhya (daily practice and perfection) of Gaudiya Vaisnavism.
In his most compassionate and wonderful shastra, Sri Chaitanya Caritamrita, Sri Krishna Dasa Kaviraja summarizes the teachings of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and the six Goswamis of Vrindavana by mentioning the same Bhagavatam verses that they used to substantiate their sublime instructions.
To emphasize the importance of these particular verses for all Gaudiya Vaisnavas, the same Bhagavatam verse is often mentioned two, three or more times in the Sri Chaitanya Caritamrta.
This series of posts presents these verses, along with selected tikas of our acharyas and the compiler. We will cover the beautiful truths, tattvas, of Krishna, Radha, Vaisnavas, Sri Guru, Bhakti Sadhana, Nama, Prema and more.
* POWER of VAISNAVA ASSOCIATION
tulayama -lavenapi, na -svargam napunar -bhavam
bhagavat-sangi-sangasya, martyanam -kim -utashisha
A moment’s association with a Krishna bhakta cannot be compared to elevation to Svarga, attaining mukti, or what to speak of any blessings in this world. (Srimad Bhagavatam 1.18.13)
Sri Jiva Goswami:
Bhagavat-sangi-sanga means association with persons who are attached to Bhagavan Sri Krishna. A moment’s association with such a person cannot be compared to attaining the heavenly planets. The affectionate nature (snigdha) of devotees should be implied from the verse. (Bhakti-rasamrita Sindhu 1.2.228)
In association of Krishna bhaktas one enjoys unlimited happiness by relishing Krishna’s nectarine lilas. Even one second’s association with a true bhakta gives rise to bliss! (Subodhini tika)
Here the sages at Naimisharanya glorify the influence of Suta Goswami. The fruits of karma, jnana, or worldly enjoyments are insignificant compared to the benefit one gains by bhagavat-sangi, a moment’s association with a Krishna bhakta. By this one receives the bhakti-beeja which results in prema. Thus, there is no possibility of comparing this with the fruits of karma and jnana. It is like comparing a mustard seed to Mount Meru. (Bhakti-rasamrita Sindhu 1.2.228)
One cannot compare the association of a pure devotee to anything material. The pure devotees are factually liberated even in the material world because they are engaged in a transcendental loving service of Bhagavan Sri Krishna.
Devotional service is eternal; it has no end because it is spiritual. Association with Krishna bhaktas is always desirable; it is worshipable, it is praiseworthy, and one may accept it as the highest goal of life.
Pandit Sri Ananta Dasaji Maharaja:
Without sadhu-sanga, no one is able to engage in bhagavad-bhajana with a mind freed from the vile decoction of attachment and aversion and the pollution of beginningless karma-samskaras.
Bhagavan Sri Krishna is filled with profound transcendental joy and always enjoying His prema-lilas. Thus, the miseries of the jivas can never touch Him. Even though the full power of compassion exists within Krishna, it is impossible for Krishna to directly express it toward the suffering jivas.
“Then how will they be delivered?” Sri Krishna’s compassion is present in the hearts of the sadhus. The rays of bhakti spread from their hearts in all directions and infuse pure love into the hearts of those around them. Such is the enormous power of sadhu-sanga.
Thus, it is the supremely merciful sadhus living in this world who help the illusion-bound suffering jivas. Other than sadhu-sanga, there is no way to obtain the mercy of Bhagavan Sri Krishna.
Vaishnava sadhu sanga ki jai! Srimad Bhagavatam ki jai! Jai Jai Sri Radhe!