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Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

The sadhaka jiva’s eternal spiritual identity, the siddha svarupa or spiritual body is not an imagination because it exists eternally in the spiritual realm, Vaikuntha/Vrndavana. As the material sky is unlimited and has unlimited residents, the spiritual sky is also unlimited with unlimited spiritual bodies.

There are unlimited siddha-dehas suitable to the unlimited types of moods of would-be sadhana siddha devotees. And that spiritual body i.e. siddha dehais revealed to a qualified sadhaka by a qualified guru. Or the siddha dehais given by Bhagavan Sri Krishna Himself as the Bhagavata describes regarding Narada Muni, Dhruva Maharaja, Ajamila, Gajendra and Putanarasasi.

Srimad Bhagavatam (3.15.14) says:

vasanti yatra purusah, sarve vaikuntha murtayah,
ye’ nimitta nimittena, dharmen aradhayan harim

“The great liberated persons [sarupya muktas] are residing there eternally [in the spiritual sky]. They all have transcendental Vaikuntha forms [like Visnu], and they worship Hari causelessly.”

In the Krama Sandarbha tika on Srimad Bhagavatam 3.15.14, Sri Jiva Goswamipada says:

vaikunthas yeva nitya ananda rupa murtir yesam, te yatra vasanti,

“The liberated souls living in the spiritual world all have eternal, blissful forms like that of Bhagavan Sri Visnu/Krishna in Vaikuntha.”

In the Priti Sandarbha (10) tika on Srimad Bhagavatam 3.15.14, Sri Jiva Goswamipada says, “Illuminating the spiritual world, Bhagavan Visnu/Krishna has unlimited spiritual forms that ARE ALL ETERNALLY EXISTING THERE (murtir yas tatra vartante) as expansions of Himself. From these unlimited murtis or transcendental forms, Bhagavan gives or awards one murti i.e. siddha svarupa to each liberated soul. This murti or transcendental form resembles that of Bhagavan Visnu/Krishna.

The siddha deha is not within one’s heart or lying dormant inside of one waiting to rise or wake up. In his tika on Vedanta Sutra (4.4.1),Baladeva Vidyabhusana says that by Bhagavan’s mercy the jiva attains its own, eternally existing svarupa (spiritual body) which is not inherent in it.

Unlike the material body inhabited by the atma, that spiritual body i.e. siddha svarupa is not created at some point in time, nor is it external or different from the atma.

Basically, what happens is that at the devotional stage of bhava or prema, one’s eternally existing spiritual body i.e. siddha deha becomes one with the atma or self. For the liberated soul, sadhana-siddha, there is no longer any duality between the self (atma) and the body. In other words, the atma, self, is the siddha deha and the siddha deha is the atma.

But you may ask, ‘Exactly how is the siddha deha non-different from the jivatma, since the jiva is tatastha-shakti, and spiritual bodies are made of svarupa-shakti i.e. antaranga-sakti i.e. Sri Krishna’s eternal internal energy?’

This is a fine point that exceeds the limits of ordinary material logic. The liberated jiva as tatastha-sakti does not change into svarupa-sakti. The siddha deha is not like the physical body of our experience; it’s a body made of bhava, prema—gopi bhava. Similarly, the divine, transcendental form of Srimati Radharani is made of maha-bhava.

The sadhana siddha or liberated tatastha-saktijiva does not become svarupa-sakti. But it is something like an iron rod made red hot by contact of the fire of svarupa-sakti in the form of prema or gopi-bhava that now constitutes one’s siddha deha or bhava deha.

Imagine if you wear a dress made of flame, would you feel different or one with the flame? Similarly, the liberated tatastha-saktijiva experiences a sense of oneness with Sri Krishna’s svarupa-sakti because of it’s possessing a transcendental body, siddha deha, made of gopi-bhava (hladini-sakti).

WHAT ARE SPIRITUAL BODIES DOING NOW?

What are all those spiritual bodies doing right now in the spiritual sky, Vaikuntha/Vrndavana? Unfortunately, other than the evidence given above, there is NO CLEAR objective answer to this question given either in sastra nor by our Gaudiya Vaisnava Sampradaya acaryas like the six Goswamis, Sri Baladeva Vidyabhusana or Visvanatha Cakravartipada.

In the absence of adequate sastrapramana, therefore one must resort to yukti i.e. logic, reason and “common sense” to draw one’s own conclusion.

Or one may select what one considers to be the most reasonable answer to this question from among the various subjective views propounded by different spiritual teachers.

Subjective Answers from Transcendental Teachers:

  1. “The spiritual body i.e. siddha deha is in an ‘in inactive state’, because when talking about transcendental things like this, we are severely limited by our language and our experience to clearly convey the situation there.”
  2. “The spiritual body i.e. siddha deha of the liberated soul exists in Vaikunthalike a 3D picture. And it’s activated when it is awarded to a sadhana siddha devotee.”
  3. “Presently, the siddha dehas of the sadhana siddhas are lying dormant in Vaikuntha like statues, clothes hanging on hangers in a closet, or shiny new cars waiting in showroom for the buyer to purchase, put in the key and drive away.”
  4. “Pramana or spiritual truth, siddhanta is based on sastra and also yukti, common sense. The idea of the siddha deha in Vaikuntha being inactive, dormant, frozen in time and “waiting for the right time to be activated” does not make sense to me.

“The Srimad Bhagavatam statement, na ca kala vikramah (2.9.10), and the acaryas’ tikas establish the fact that unlike here in the material world of our experience, there is no linear time in spiritual world.”

“In his tika to Brahma Samhita (56), Sri Jiva Goswamipada says “Very great time periods of billions of years, or even split seconds of time do not exist in the spiritual realm of Vaikuntha or Vrndavana.”

“In the Krama Sandarbha tika on Srimad Bhagavatam 3.15.14, quoted above, Sri Jiva Goswamipada uses the word NITYA which means the spiritual body exists eternally in the past, present and future. If the spiritual body is ‘activated’ at some point of time, that would mean it has beginning and thus is not nitya.”

“The idea of the dormant, inactive or still siddha deha is nowhere in sastra, and nor does it make sense (yukti). Presently and eternally in Vaikuntha/Vrndavana the siddha dehas or spiritual bodies of the liberated souls are active. It’s a seamless transfer from death as a perfected premi sadhaka to one’s eternal siddha deha in the spiritual sky, Vaikuntha/Vrndavana.”

“What happens is this: Right here right now on earth, the perfected premi sadhaka is meditating upon and serving in his/her siddha deha, eternal spiritual body. Then at death, that premi bhakta is immediately transferred to Vaikuntha or Vrndavana, and continues serving in that same spiritual body, siddha deha, there in the spiritual realm.”

“Just imagine right here in Radha Kunda, a premi bhakti enters a deep state of meditative samadhi fanning Srimati Radharani in his/her manjari svarupa. Suddenly death comes, then in a flash that premi bhakta, now a sadhana-siddha, continues fanning Srimati Radhika in the spiritual realm in his/her nityasvarupa or eternal siddha deha. Jai Radhe!”

“The Srimad Bhagavatam (1.6.28-29) story of Narada Muni’s death, the immediate attainment of his siddha deha, and his transfer to Vaikuntha gives the proof or praman for this fact. The eternality of the soul’s Vaikuntha/Vrndavana spiritual deha is proven in the vasantiyatrapurusasloka of Srimad Bhagavatam 3.15.14.”

“To repeat, no sastras describe closets in Vaikuntha with dormant siddha dehas hanging on hangers; or still not yet inhabited siddha dehas. Sastra clearly say that the sadhakajiva’s siddha deha is eternal, already in the spiritual realm and actively serving Bhagavan Sri Krishna/Visnu.”

“It’s common sense that a fully Krishna conscious, blissful spiritual entity in a spiritual body, i.e. siddha deha, would be lovingly serving Bhagavan. He or she would not just besitting alone in cave of Govardhana Hill—still, inactive, dormant—and hanging around doing nothing.”

“The spiritual world and everyone in it is fully active, dynamic, and eternally blissful. The idea of a “dormant, inactive, not-yet-inhabited eternal body” or siddha deha in Vaikuntha/Vrndavana does not make any sense at all. The only non-inhabited body is a dead material body!”

We have presented the available sastra praman on the topic of “Your Spiritual Body”, and the subjective views of various spiritual wisdom teachers. Now each reader can choose the answer that seems most reasonable and satisfying to his/her intellect. Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

(concept adapted: Sri Satyanarayana Das Babaji, Sri Advaita Dasji, Sri Krishna Dasji)

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

The eternal constitutional nature of every single jiva is to be an eternal servant of Bhagavan Sri Krishna, jivera svarupa haya krishnera nitya dasa (Caitanya-caritamrta 2.22.108). A transcendental body, siddha deha, fit for serving Bhagavan Sri Visnu/Krishna is being kept in the spiritual sky for each jiva.

When by the mercy of Sri Krishna, Sri Guru and pure devotion one becomes qualified for Krishna’s direct seva, Bhagavan Sri Krishna will give one of those spiritual bodies to the sadhaka. The spiritual body, which is called the siddha-svarupa i.e. siddha deha, is given to a qualified sadhaka to practice raganuga bhakti in order to attain Vraja prema and the eternal seva of Radha Govinda Yugala in Goloka Dhama.

While living in the physical body, a raganuga sadhaka concentrates on nama japa and Radha-Krishna asta-kaliya lila smaran. Externally one follows all the rules of vaidhi-bhakti. But internally, in one’s private mental/heart world, the raga bhakta visualizes his/her siddha deha, and meditates upon serving Radha Govinda Yugala with the feelings and bhava of a gopi/manjari.

In the desired spiritual form, one tries to reach the ideal of mentally serving Radha Govinda Yugala throughout the day and night, asta-kaliya lila smarana bhajana. By continual meditation one gradually enters and experiences Krishna’s Vraja lila as it floods one’s inner being with its eternal presence, tasty bliss and fulfillment.

The internally visualized siddha deha is real. It’s a mental reflection of the transcendental body [siddha-svarupa/deha], which Sri Krishna will reveal and one will directly see and experience at the stage of bhava, prema, or at death as in the case of Narada Muni (SB 1.6.28), Dhruva Maharaja, Ajamila, Gajendra and Putana raksasi.

In Srimad Bhagavatam (3.9.11), Sri Brahma says:

yad yad dhiya ta urugaya, vibhava yanti,
tat tad vapuh pranayase, sad anugrahaya

“Bhagavan Sri Krishna is so merciful to His devotees that He gives them the particular spiritual bodies [siddha dehas] upon which they are meditating upon along with the mood of love [bhava; gopi-bhava] that they are cultivating during sadhana.”

In Sri Gita (4.11), Bhagavan Sri Krishna Himself promises reciprocation: ye yatha mam prapadyante, tams tathaiva bhajam yaham, “I respond to persons according to the manner and mood in which they surrender to Me.” In Priti Sandarbha (50), Sri Jiva Goswami confirms this point by quoting Chandogya Upanisad (3.14.1): yatha kratur asmin loke puruso bhavati tathetah pretya bhavati, “According to the way one is determined to worship the Bhagavan Sri Visnu/Krishna in this life, a person attains an appropriate reward after death.”

Your eternal, individual spiritual body can be attained either by assignment as a precious gift from Sri Guru, or by revelation from Bhagavan Sri Krishna via His omnipotent pure Divine Names.

One teacher described the manifestation of the siddha deha that the sadhaka continually meditates upon thus: “One’s eternally existing siddha deha in Vaikuntha/Vrndavana descends into the mind of the meditative raganuga bhakta in a “shadow” form. That siddha deha is eternally existing spiritual realm, but it clearly and fully manifests in the mind at the particular time when a sadhaka attains bhava or prema.”

Bhakta O.B.L Kapoor explains how the raganuga sadhaka attains the spiritual body, siddha deha thus: “The siddha deha or transcendental body of the sadhaka first appears in the mind of the guru, who then reveals its details i.e. name, color, dress, age, personal seva to Radha-Govinda, and so on to the disciple.

“The disciple then forms a mental picture of this siddha deha, identifies fully with it as being one’s eternal spiritual body, and in that form always serves Radha-Govinda in his meditation, lila smarana. This type of meditation will bring success because it’s the nature of the mind is to assume the shape of any object upon which it always dwells. And the Gita (8.6) says; sada tad bhava bhavita, “as you think, so you become.” (adapted “Raganuga Bhakti”)

The Srimad Bhagavatam (11.9.23) confirms the powerful effect of form meditation as in contemplating one’s eternal spiritual body or siddha deha. The Bhagavata describes how a small insect, trapped alive inside a hole by a larger insect, out of fear continually meditated on the form of its predator. Due to this absorption, after death that small insect got the same type of body as the bigger one which it was constantly meditating upon.

In Uddhava-gita (11.15.26), Sri Krishna says, “A sadhaka who has faith in Me (mat parah puman) will obtain whatever he/she desires by devotion to Me, and by fixing the mind on Me because My wish is always fulfilled (satya-sankalpa).”

Pandita Sri Ananta Dasa Babaji describes the process for attaining the spiritual body, siddha deha thus: “While meditating on Krishna’s pastimes, the sadhaka will especially contemplate one’s personal eternal seva to Radha-Krishna as revealed by Sri Guru, and eagerly perform that seva within one’s mind. In addition, one will serve in ALLEGIANCE to the nitya-siddha sakhis and manjaris like Visakha-sakhi and Tulasi-manjari (aka Dasa Gosvami).

“ALLEGIANCE means aligning, identifying and mixing one’s mind and heart, thoughts and feelings, with those of one’s role models i.e. Visakha sakhi or Tulasi manjari. By this method the sadhaka’s bhava i.e. gopi/manjari bhava will develop, deepen and eventually become one with theirs.

“The raganuga sadhaka will surely attain success in his manjari svarupa bhajan because he/she has taken full shelter of Bhagavan Sri Krishna, the Absolute Truth personified. Furthermore, the sadhaka gets transcendental power, support and compassionate blessings from bhakti, which is composed of Krishna’s own internal potency, hladini-sakti.

“In this world, the sadhaka will attain siddhi or success in bhajan by receiving the mercy of Sri Guru gained by sincere service. Then in the spiritual realm, by the mercy of one’s guru-rupa manjari, the sadhana siddha will obtain his/her cherished direct seva to Radha-Govinda Yugala in one’s manjari svarupa in the bowers of Vrajadhama. In raganuga bhajan pursuing manjari bhava, this is the way to attain one’s eternal spiritual body, siddha deha.” (adapted “Prema Bhakti Candrika” tikas 55-56)

Obtaining siddha deha ki jai! Sri Guru krpa ki jai! Jai Jai Sri Radhe!