Sri Jayadeva Gosvami

Sri Jayadeva Gosvami Tirobhava tithi [disappearance day] – January 7, 2018

Srila Prabhupada glorifies Jayadeva Gosvami
Compiled by Narasimha dasa and Yasoda nandana dasa

Srimad-Bhagavatam 4.24.29: PURPORT
This verse gives an idea of the highest perfection of the evolutionary process. As described by the Vaisnava poet Jayadeva Gosvami, pralaya-payodhi jale dhrtavan asi vedam **. Let us begin tracing the evolutionary process from the point of devastation (pralaya), when the whole universe is filled with water. At that time there are many fishes and other aquatics, and from these aquatics evolve creepers, trees, etc. From these, insects and reptiles evolve, and from them birds, beasts and then human beings and finally civilized human beings. Now, the civilized human being is at a junction where he can make further evolutionary progress in spiritual life. Here it is stated (sva-dharma-nisthah) that when a living entity comes to a civilized form of life, there must be sva-dharma, social divisions according to one’s work and qualifications.

Srimad-Bhagavatam 4.26.9: PURPORT
The devotees are pained to see the hunting and killing of animals in the forest, the wholesale slaughter of animals in the slaughterhouses, and the exploitation of young girls in brothels that function under different names as clubs and societies. Being very much compassionate upon the killing of animals in sacrifice, the great sage Narada began his instructions to King Pracinabarhisat. In these instructions, Narada Muni explained that devotees like him are very much afflicted by all the killing that goes on in human society. Not only are saintly persons afflicted by this killing, but even God Himself is afflicted and therefore comes down in the incarnation of Lord Buddha. Jayadeva Gosvami therefore sings: sadaya-hrdaya-darsita-pasu-ghatam. Simply to stop the killing of animals, Lord Buddha compassionately appeared. Some rascals put forward the theory that an animal has no soul or is something like dead stone. In this way they rationalize that there is no sin in animal-killing. Actually animals are not dead stone, but the killers of animals are stonehearted. Consequently no reason or philosophy appeals to them. They continue keeping slaughterhouses and killing animals in the forest. The conclusion is that one who does not care for the instructions of saintly persons like Narada and his disciplic succession surely falls into the category of nasta-prajna and thus goes to hell.

Srimad-Bhagavatam 8.1.16: PURPORT
Svayambhuva Manu is the leader of mankind, and he has given a book called Manu-samhita to guide human society. Herein he directs us to follow the Supreme Personality of Godhead in His different incarnations. These incarnations are described in Vedic literature, and Jayadeva Gosvami has described ten important incarnations in summary (kesava dhrta-mina-sarira jaya jagad-isa hare, kesava dhrta-nara-hari-rupa jaya jagad-isa hare, kesava dhrta-buddha-sarira jaya jagad-isa hare, etc.). Svayambhuva Manu instructs us to follow the instructions of God’s incarnations, especially Krishna’s instructions of Bhagavad-gita As It Is.  

Sri Chaitanya-charitamrta – 1975 Edition: Adi 4.219

kamsarir api samsara-
radham adhaya hrdaye
tatyaja vraja-sundarih

kamsa-arih—Lord Krishna, the enemy of Kamsa; api—moreover; samsara—for the essence of enjoyment (rasa-lila); vasana—by the desire; baddha—tied on; srnkhalam—who was like the chains; radham—Srimati Radharani; adhaya—taking; hrdaye—in the heart; tatyaja—left aside; vraja-sundarih—the other gopis.

"Lord Krishna, the enemy of Kamsa, left aside the other gopis during the rasa dance and took Srimati Radharani to His heart, for She is the helper of the Lord in realizing the essence of His desires."

In this verse from the Gita-govinda (3.1), Jayadeva Gosvami describes Sri Krishna's leaving the rasa-lila to search for Srimati Radharani.

Sri Chaitanya-charitamrta – 1975 Edition: Adi 4.224

visvesam anuranjanena janayann anandam indivara-
sreni-syamala-komalair upanayann angair anangotsavam
svacchandam vraja-sundaribhir abhitah praty-angam alingitah
srngarah sakhi murtiman iva madhau mugdho harih kridati

visvesam—of all the gopis; anuranjanena—by the act of pleasing; janayan—producing; anandam—the bliss; indivara-sreni—like a row of blue lotuses; syamala—bluish black; komalaih—and soft; upanayan—bringing; angaih—with His limbs; ananga-utsavam—a festival for Cupid; svacchandam—without restriction; vraja-sundaribhih—by the young women of Vraja; abhitah—on both sides; prati-angam—each limb; alingitah—embraced; srngarah—amorous love; sakhi—O friend; murtiman—embodied; iva—like; madhau—in the springtime; mugdhah—perplexed; harih—Lord Hari; kridati—plays.

"My dear friends, just see how Sri Krishna is enjoying the season of spring! With the gopis embracing each of His limbs, He is like amorous love personified. With His transcendental pastimes, He enlivens all the gopis and the entire creation. With His soft bluish-black arms and legs, which resemble blue lotus flowers, He has created a festival for Cupid.

Sri Chaitanya-charitamrta – 1975 Edition: Adi 13.42

vidyapati, jayadeva, candidasera gita
asvadena ramananda-svarupa-sahita

vidyapati—the author of the name Vidyapati; jayadeva—of the name Jayadeva; candidasera—of the name Chandidasa; gita—their songs; asvadena—tastes; ramananda—of the name Ramananda; svarupa—of the name Svarupa; sahita—along with.

The Lord used to read the books of Vidyapati, Jayadeva and Chandidasa, relishing their songs with His confidential associates like Sri Ramananda Raya and Svarupa Damodara Gosvami.

Vidyapati was a famous composer of songs about the pastimes of Radha-Krishna. He was an inhabitant of Mithila, born in a brahmana family. It is calculated that he composed his songs during the reign of King Sivasimha and Queen Lachimadevi in the beginning of the fourteenth century of the Saka Era, almost one hundred years before the appearance of Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. The twelfth generation of Vidyapati's descendants is still living. Vidyapati's songs about the pastimes of Lord Krishna express intense feelings of separation from Krishna, and Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu relished all those songs in His ecstasy of separation from Krishna.

Jayadeva was born during the reign of Maharaja Laksmana Sena of Bengal in the eleventh or twelfth century of the Saka Era. His father was Bhojadeva, and his mother was Vamadevi. For many years he lived in Navadvipa, then the capital of Bengal. His birthplace was in the Birbhum district in the village Kendubilva. In the opinion of some authorities, however, he was born in Orissa, and still others say that he was born in southern India. He passed the last days of his life in Jagannatha Puri. One of his famous books is Gita-govinda, which is full of transcendental mellow feelings of separation from Krishna. The gopis felt separation from Krishna before the rasa dance, as mentioned in the Srimad-Bhagavatam, and the Gita-govinda expresses such feelings. There are many commentaries on the Gita-govinda by many Vaisnavas.

Chandidasa was born in the village of Nannura, which is also in the Birbhum district of Bengal. He was born of a brahmana family, and it is said that he also took birth in the beginning of the fourteenth century, Sakabda Era. It has been suggested that Chandidasa and Vidyapati were great friends because the writings of both express the transcendental feelings of separation profusely. The feelings of ecstasy described by Chandidasa and Vidyapati were actually exhibited by Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. He relished all those feelings in the role of Srimati Radharani, and His appropriate associates for this purpose were Sri Ramananda Raya and Sri Svarupa Damodara Gosvami. These intimate associates of Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu helped the Lord very much in the pastimes in which He felt like Radharani.

Sri Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura comments in this connection that such feelings of separation as Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu enjoyed from the books of Vidyapati, Chandidasa and Jayadeva are especially reserved for persons like Sri Ramananda Raya and Svarupa Damodara, who were paramahamsas, men of the topmost perfection, because of their advanced spiritual consciousness. Such topics are not to be discussed by ordinary persons imitating the activities of Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. For critical students of mundane poetry and literary men without God consciousness who are after bodily sense gratification, there is no need to read such a high standard of transcendental literature. Persons who are after sense gratification should not try to imitate raganuga devotional service. In their songs, Chandidasa, Vidyapati and Jayadeva have described the transcendental activities of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Mundane reviewers of the songs of Vidyapati, Jayadeva and Chandidasa simply help people in general become debauchees, and this leads only to social scandals and atheism in the world. One should not misunderstand the pastimes of Radha and Krishna to be the activities of a mundane young boy and girl. The mundane sexual activities of young boys and girls are most abominable. Therefore, those who are in bodily consciousness and who desire sense gratification are forbidden to indulge in discussions of the transcendental pastimes of Sri Radha and Krishna. 

Sri Chaitanya-charitamrta – 1975 Edition: Adi 16.102

dosa-guna-vicara–ei alpa kari' mani
kavitva-karane sakti, tanha se vakhani

dosa-guna-vicara—therefore to criticize one's poetry as good or bad; ei—this; alpa—negligible; kari'-making; mani—I consider; kavitva—poetic ingenuity; karane—in performing; sakti—power; tanha—that; se—we; vakhani—describe.

"Such mistakes should be considered negligible. One should see only how such poets have displayed their poetic power.

In Srimad-Bhagavatam (1.5.11) it is said:

tad-vag-visargo janatagha-viplavo
yasmin prati-slokam abaddhavaty api
namany anantasya yaso 'nkitani yat
srnvanti gayanti grnanti sadhavah

"In explaining the glories of the Lord, inexperienced men may compose poetry with many faults, but because it contains glorification of the Lord, great personalities read it, hear it and chant it." Despite its minute literary discrepancies, one must study poetry on the merit of its subject matter. According to Vaisnava philosophy, any literature that glorifies the Lord, whether properly written or not, is first class. There need be no other considerations. The poetic compositions of Bhavabhuti, or Srikantha, include Malati-madhava, Uttara-carita, Vira-carita and many other similar Sanskrit dramas. This great poet was born during the time of Bhojaraja as the son of Nilakantha, a brahmana. Kalidasa flourished during the time of Maharaja Vikramaditya, and he became the state poet. He composed some thirty or forty Sanskrit dramas, including Kumara-sambhava, Abhijnana-sakuntala and Megha-duta. His drama Raghu-vamsa is especially famous. We have already described Jayadeva in Chapter Thirteen of this Adi-lila.  

Sri Chaitanya-charitamrta – 1975 Edition: Adi 17.117

jala pana kariya nace hana vihvala
yamunakarsana-lila dekhaye sakala

jala—water; pana kariya—after drinking; nace—dances; hana—becoming; vihvala—ecstatic; yamuna-akarsana—attracting the river Yamuna; lila—pastimes; dekhaye—sees; sakala—everyone.

After drinking the water, Lord Chaitanya became so ecstatic that He began to dance. Thus everyone saw the pastime of attracting the river Yamuna.

Yamunakarsana-lila is the pastime of attracting Yamuna. One day, Sri Baladeva wanted the Yamuna River to come before Him, and when the river Yamuna refused, He took His plow, wanting to dig a canal so that Yamuna would be obliged to come there. Since Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu is the original form of Baladeva, in His ecstasy He asked everyone to bring honey. In this way, all the devotees standing there saw the yamunakarsana-lila. In this lila, Baladeva was accompanied by His girlfriends. After drinking a honey beverage called Varuni, He wanted to jump into the Yamuna and swim with the girls. It is stated in Srimad-Bhagavatam (10.65.25-30, 33) that Lord Baladeva asked Yamuna to come near, and when the river disobeyed the, order of the Lord, He became angry and thus wanted to snatch her near to Him with His plow. Yamuna, however, very much afraid of Lord Balarama's anger, immediately came and surrendered unto Him, praying to the Lord, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and admitting her fault. She was then excused. This is the sum and substance of the yamunakarsana-lila. The incident is also described in the prayer of Jayadeva Gosvami concerning the ten incarnations:
vahasi vapusi visade vasanam jaladabham
kesava dhrta-haladhara-rupa jaya jagad-isa hare 

Sri Chaitanya-charitamrta – 1975 Edition: Madhya 8.107

itas tatas tam anusrtya radhikam
krtanutapah sa kalinda-nandini
tatanta-kunje visasada madhavah

itah tatah—hither and thither; tam—Her; anusrtya—searching out; radhikam—Srimati Radharani; ananga—of Cupid; bana-vrana—by a wound from the arrow; khinna-manasah—whose heart is injured; krta-anutapah—repentant for misbehavior; sah—He (Lord Krishna); kalinda-nandini—of the river Yamuna; tata-anta—on the edge of the bank; kunje—in the bushes; visasada—lamented; madhavah—Lord Krishna.

" 'Being afflicted by the arrow of Cupid and unhappily regretting His mistreating Radharani, Madhava, Lord Krishna, began to search for Srimati Radharani along the banks of the Yamuna River. When He failed to find Her, He entered the bushes of Vrndavana and began to lament.'

These two verses are from the Gita-govinda (3.1, 2), written by Jayadeva Gosvami.  

Sri Chaitanya-charitamrta – 1975 Edition: Madhya 10.115

vidyapati, candidasa, sri-gita-govinda
ei tina gite kara'na prabhura ananda

vidyapati—an old Vaisnava poet from the province of Mithila; candidasa—a Bengali Vaisnava poet born in the village of Nannura, in the Birbhum district; sri-gita-govinda—a celebrated poem by Jayadeva Gosvami; ei—these; tina—three; gite—songs; kara'na—cause; prabhura—of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu; ananda—happiness.

Sri Svarupa Damodara used to read the poems of Vidyapati and Chandidasa and Jayadeva Gosvami's Sri Gita-govinda. He used to make Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu very happy by singing these songs.

Sri Chaitanya-charitamrta – 1975 Edition: Antya 15.27

karnamrta, vidyapati, sri-gita-govinda
ihara sloka-gite prabhura karaya ananda

karnamrta—the book Krishna-karnamrta; vidyapati—the author Vidyapati; sri-gita-govinda—the book Sri Gita-govinda by Jayadeva Gosvami; ihara—of these; sloka-gite—verses and songs; prabhura—for Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu; karaya—create; ananda—happiness.

The Lord especially liked to hear Bilvamangala Thakura's Krishna-karnamrta, the poetry of Vidyapati and Sri Gita-govinda by Jayadeva Gosvami. Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu felt great pleasure in His heart when His associates chanted verses from these books.

Sri Chaitanya-charitamrta – 1975 Edition: Antya 17.6

Vidyapati, candidasa, sri-gita-govinda
bhavanurupa sloka padena raya-ramananda

vidyapati—the author Vidyapati; candidasa—the author Chandidasa; sri-gita-govinda—the famous book by Jayadeva Gosvami; bhava-anurupa—according to the ecstatic emotion; sloka—verses; padena—recites; raya-ramananda—Ramananda Raya.

Ramananda Raya would quote verses from the books of Vidyapati and Chandidasa, and especially from the Gita-govinda by Jayadeva Gosvami, to complement the ecstasy of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. 

Sri Chaitanya-charitamrta – 1975 Edition: Antya 20 

The following summary study of the Twentieth Chapter is given by Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura in his Amrta-pravaha-bhasya. Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu passed His nights tasting the meaning of Siksastaka in the company of Svarupa Damodara Gosvami and Ramananda Raya. Sometimes He recited verses from Jayadeva Gosvami's Gita-govinda, from Srimad-Bhagavatam, from Sri Ramananda Raya's jagannatha-vallabha-nataka or from Sri Bilvamangala Thakura's Krishna-karnamrta. In this way, He became absorbed in ecstatic emotions. For the twelve years Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu lived at Jagannatha Puri, He relished the taste of reciting such transcendental verses. The Lord was present in this mortal world for forty-eight years altogether. After hinting about the Lord's disappearance, the author of Chaitanya-caritamrta gives a short description of the entire Antya-lila and then ends his book.

The Nectar of Devotion – 1970 Edition: Chapter 22
Jayadeva Gosvami, in his Gita-govinda, has sung as follows: "The Lord has saved the Vedas in His form as a fish, and He has borne the whole universe on His back in the form of a tortoise. He has picked up this earthly planet from the water in the form of a boar. He has killed Hiranyakasipu in the form of Nrsimha. He has cheated Maharaj Bali in the form of Vamana. He has annihilated all the dynasties of the ksatriyas in the form of Parasurama. He has killed all the demons in the form of Lord Rama. He has accepted the great plow in the form of Balarama. He has annihilated all the atheistic persons in the form of Kalki. And He has saved all the poor animals in the form of Lord Buddha."* These are some of the descriptions of the incarnations emanating from Krishna, and from the Srimad-Bhagavatam it is understood that innumerable incarnations are always coming out from the body of Krishna, just like waves in the ocean. No one can even count how many waves there are, and similarly no one can count how many incarnations are coming from the Lord's body.

Conversations: July 5, 1976, Washington, D.C.

Dr. Sukla: Have the writings of Vidyapati come to attention, and if they have…

Prabhupada: That is very higher, not for ordinary persons. Vidyapati's writing is meant for realized souls, not ordinary. Ordinary, they will take as love affairs between girls and boys. Therefore it is not for them. Those who are already advanced, liberated, then these love affairs of Krishna and Radha, they will be discussed.

Dr. Sukla: Is there any plan of bringing those things out, publishing them, his poems and translations?

Prabhupada: It is not for ordinary. Chandidasa, Vidyapati. Chaitanya Mahaprabhu used to discuss Jayadeva's books, Vidyapati's books, very confidentially amongst a few devotees. Not publicly.

Dr. Sukla: So you think they might be misused.

Prabhupada: Yes, they are being misused. They take Krishna as debauch. They do not understand. Therefore the Krishna's lila with the gopis, they are described in the Tenth Canto. That is also middle of Tenth Canto, and nine cantos required to understand Krishna, beginning with janmady asya yatah [SB 1.1.1]. So that is the Absolute Truth. These things should be discussed in the beginning. Then when one is fully convinced that Krishna has nothing to do with this material world, as Sankaracarya said, narayanah para avyaktat, avyaktat anna sambhava. This material world is a production… [break] It has to be purified. Sarvopadhi-vinirmuktam tat-paratvena nirmalam [Cc. Madhya 19.170]. When it is nirmalam, then it is first-class. The first process is nirmalam. Sravanam kirtanam visnoh smaranam pada-sevanam, arcanam vandanam dasyam [SB 7.5.23]. This process is first-class. Not all of a sudden jump over. This literature, that is (indistinct), that should be kept in reserve for persons who are already liberated. Otherwise it will be misunderstood.