Union and Separation in the Maha-mantra

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

There are three ista devas in the Hare Kṛṣṇa maha-mantra: Radha, Kṛṣṇa and Prema.

Hare Kṛṣṇa–means Radha-Kṛṣṇa together, united in love. They continually relish a unique type of inconceivably powerful, all-attractive, unlimitedly sweet love known as madhurya-prema. This prema binds Radha and Kṛṣṇa with its immense magnetic force. Radha-Kṛṣṇa relish this extraordinary prema in its highest expression. The living entities can also taste this wonderful madhurya-prema by assisting the meeting of the Divine Couple. Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa.

While chanting the maha-mantra one should deeply contemplate the pure beauty, taste and sweetness of the prema that forcefully pulls Hare (Radha) toward Kṛṣṇa and Kṛṣṇa toward Radha. Hare Kṛṣṇa-Hare Kṛṣṇa. Try to feel and understand this prema. Fervently pray for the day when Radha-Kṛṣṇa will bestow vraja-prema upon us. Hare Kṛṣṇa, Hare Kṛṣṇa.

Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa–means Radha is separated from Kṛṣṇa. Missing the splendid taste of His prema, Radha cries out, “Kṛṣṇa! Kṛṣṇa! Where is Kṛṣṇa? Where can I find Kṛṣṇa?”

While chanting the maha-mantra one should remember Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, absorbed in radha-bhava and crying out, “Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa He!” May we unite Radha with Kṛṣṇa by the purity of our service attitude toward the holy name. Kṛṣṇa-Kṛṣṇa.

Hare Hare–means Kṛṣṇa is separated from Radha. Missing the deliciously sweet taste of Her love, Kṛṣṇa cries, “Hare! Hare! Where is Radha? Where can I find Radha?” May we unite Kṛṣṇa with Radha by the purity of our service attitude toward the holy name. Hare-Hare.

Hare Rama–Hare means Radha the Ramani, the most beautiful, charming young lover who perfectly pleases Kṛṣṇa in unlimited ways. Rama means Radha Raman Kṛṣṇa who is perfectly expert in delighting Radha. Hare Rama Hare Rama–United again, Radha-Madhava’s madhurya prema overflows with an especially exuberant taste enhanced and nourished by Their recent separation. Hare Rama Hare Rama.

Rama Rama–means that Ramani Radha is again painfully separated from Her beloved Radha Raman Kṛṣṇa. Radha cries out, “Rama! Rama! Where is Rama? Where can I find My Raman?” Rama-Rama.

Hare Hare–means Kṛṣṇa tortured in separation from His beloved Radha. Feeling totally empty without Her, Kṛṣṇa cries out, “Hare! Hare! Where is Radha? Where can I find My Ramani?” Hare-Hare.

Thus vraja-prema compels Radha-Kṛṣṇa to continually experience union and separation in Their amorous pastimes within the Hare Kṛṣṇa maha-mantra. One should chant the maha-mantra with complete submission, the utmost humility, and a pure service attitude. By sincerely praying for the causeless mercy of Radha-Govinda, the maha-mantra may someday reveal these sublime truths and bestow the precious treasure of vraja-prema.

An excerpt from the book Art of Chanting

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