Recommended route description for transcendental travel. CC M 19.153 & 19.154

As one waters the bhakti-latä-bija, the seed sprouts, and the creeper gradually grows to the point where it penetrates the walls of this universe and goes beyond the Virajä River, lying between the spiritual world and the material world. It attains brahma-loka, the Brahman effulgence, and penetrating through that stratum, it reaches the spiritual sky and the spiritual planet Goloka Vrindävana. CC M 19.153

”Being situated in one’s heart and being watered by shravana-kirtana, the bhakti creeper grows more and more. In this way it attains the shelter of the desire tree of the lotus feet of Krishna, who is eternally situated in the planet known as Goloka Vrndävana, in the topmost region of the spiritual sky. CC M 19.154

Further more in the purport of text 154, last paragraph, we find a wealth of transcendental information:

“Goloka Vrindävana is the highest planet in the spiritual world. In order to go to the spiritual world after penetrating the covering of the material universe, one must penetrate Brahma-loka, the spiritual effulgence. Then one can come to the Goloka Vrindävana planet. There are also other planets in the spiritual world, called Vaikuntha planets, and on these planets Lord Näräyaëa is worshiped with awe and veneration. On these planets shänta-rasa is prevalent, and some of the devotees are also connected with the Supreme Personality of Godhead in däsya-rasa, the mellow of servitorship. As far as the mellow of fraternity is concerned, in Vaikuntha this rasa is represented by gaurava-sakhya, friendship in awe and veneration. The other fraternity rasa, exhibited as vishrambha (friendship in equality), is found in the Goloka Vrindävana planet. Above that is service to the Lord in vätsalya-rasa (parental love), and above all is the relationship with the Lord in the mädhurya-rasa (conjugal love). These five rasas are fully exhibited in the spiritual world in one’s relationship with the Lord. Therefore in the spiritual world the bhakti creeper finds its resting place at the lotus feet of Krishna.”

COMMENTARY.

First of all, we note that the word “brahma-loka” presents two meanings.

1 ) The residence of Lord Brahma, the engineer of the universe. This is a material planet within the walls of the universe. It is in fact, the topmost planet of the universe.

2) Brahmajyoti and Brahma-loka are synonyms and refers to the spiritual effulgence of the transcendental body of Lord Krishna. Not only is this particular Brahma-loka situated in the spiritual world, but it represents an integral part of the spiritual world itself. Which is basically saying the same thing, as all things in the spiritual world are made of the same transcendental stuff, whose characteristics are well opposed to that of matter, as we perceive it with our gross senses.

From this passage we gather also the information that some devotees of the Lord on the Vaikuntha planets are related to the Lord through the shanta-rasa, the neutrality relationship. Not just some devotees but the majority, as Srila Prabhupada writes that this shanta-rasa is prevalent in the Vaikunthas. That’s very interesting, as my conception of Shanta rasa in this material world was for example, the relationship with the chair I am sitting on. In other words, my relationship with an inanimate object. However here it is clearly stated that the devotees of Vaikuntha enjoy the shanta-rasa with Krishna.

Another interesting point in this paragraph, is that there are two kinds of sakhya-rasa and they are, from the lower to the higher:

Gaurava-sakhya, friendship in awe and veneration found in the Vaikuntha planets

and

vishrambha-sakhya, friendship in equality found exclusively in Goloka Vrindavan. The same distinction applies to madhurya-rasa (conjugal love) also called sringara-rasa. The queens of Vaikuntha do not enjoy the same degree of familiarity with Krishna, as the cowherd girls of Vrindavana do.

What an achievement for a transcendental traveler to become a real friend of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the master of all worlds! The kind of friendship that is not at all imbued with awe and veneration, but allows one to go cow herding every day with the Supreme Personality of Godhead in Vrindavan, share meals with Him, joke with him, and play games like for example climbing on His back for couple wrestling. We sometimes see this type of activity happening on the beaches just for fun. These activities are vividly described in Srila Prabhupada’s Krishna book. The cow herding in the company of Krishna is boys-only activity. Even though we hear of the existence of the cowherd girls, we don’t hear that they accompany the boys for this activity. That does not mean at all that girls have less access to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. They have full access, but in a different rasa. And Krishna, being the Supreme Personality of Godhead can manage simultaneously zillions of zillions of relationships. And He does so right now! In that realm, there are consequently no problems at all.

We also learn that Krishna’s planet, Goloka Vrindavan is the topmost of all planets. How about a whole planet to establish one’s exclusive residence? We hear that some rich and influential people purchase a whole island for their residence, others purchase properties of hundreds of thousands and even millions of hectares. But a whole planet? Another display of Krishna unrivaled opulence!  And there you will find desire trees and surabhi cows and other unimaginable marvels. as per Brahma-Samhita 5.29

TEXT 29

cintämani-prakara-sadmasu kalpa-vriksha-
lakshävriteshu surabhir abhipälayantam
lakshmé-sahasra-shata-sambhrama-sevyamänam
govindam ädi-purusham tam aham bhajämi

SYNONYMS

cintämani—touchstone; prakara—groups made of; sadmasu—in abodes; kalpa-vriksha—of desire trees; laksha—by millions; ävriteñu—surrounded; surabhih—surabhi cows; abhipälayantam—tending; lakshmi—of goddesses of fortune; sahasra—of thousands; shata—by hundreds; sambhrama—with great respect; sevyamänam—being served; govindam—Govinda; ädi-purusham—the original person; tam—Him; aham—I; bhajämi—worship.

TRANSLATION

I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, the first progenitor who is tending the cows, yielding all desire, in abodes built with spiritual gems, surrounded by millions of purpose trees, always served with great reverence and affection by hundreds of thousands of laksmis or gopis. All rights reserved to BBT International and the author of the article.

 

Here again, (CC M 19.153 purport, last paragraph. ) Srila Prabhupada uses two times the word “mellow” as a noun. This is rather an unconventional use of the word “mellow”, because the english dictionary gives “mellow” as an adjective and as well as a verb, but the English dictionary does not give “mellow” as a noun. At least in this passage, Srila Prabhupada basically uses interchangeably three different words i.e. relationship, mellow and rasa to designate the same phenomenon. Two of these words are English and one is a Sanskrit word. Out of the two English terms, the word “mellow” is used in a unique and exclusive Prabhupada-way.

Another parampara way to call this is the Hare Krishna style or Hare Krishna way, as Srila Prabhupada Himself confirms in 700109let.Satsvarupa. On my website www.krishnaculture.org, one will find the seed of a Prabhupada glossary as well. All glories to Srila Prabhupada!

The word “mellow” is used 908 times in the Vedabase.

Srila Prabhupada therefore, makes here a personal and unconventional use of the word. In the beginning it may conflict with our sense of the use of the English language. But we can adopt this Prabhupada-way relatively easily. And why “mellow” should not be used as a noun? Conventionally, it is already used as a verb and as adjective and Srila Prabhupada in His own perfection and completeness, complements even the English language by using “mellow” as a noun. After all the English language, especially in its rules of pronunciation is quite a whimsical affair, as Srila Prabhupada has often pointed out. For example, even though the u spelling is the same, the words “put” and “but” call for a different sound in their pronunciations. According to Srila Prabhupada, such variations are clearly whimsical and do not exist in the Sanskrit language,. Of course the English noun directly associated with “mellow” is “mellowness.” says my World Book Dictionary. 1975 edition, printed in USA. ISBN 0-7166-0275-X. It says also these words are related to mild. And in the explanation of the adjective “mellow” the following words appear: soft, full-flavored, ripe, sweet, juicy, mature, rich. In relation to a person we find the following explanation: softened and made wise by age and experience; having the gentleness or dignity resulting for maturity.

It is therefore no wonder that “mellow” was rightly chosen, because it conveys the intended meaning perfectly and completely and because rasa is, after all, the reservoir of all pleasure. Which brings us to the real point, as HG Dravida Prabhu has just reminded me that His Divine Grace Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Goswami Thakur, Srila Prabhupada’s spiritual master and our param Guru, is the actual initiator of this practice.

In the book Brahma Samhita by our param Guru, the words “mellow” is used 5 times. In Brahma-samhita 5.3, it is clearly suggested that “mellow” is the English equivalent for the Sanskrit “rasa”. The other four times, “mellow” is used conventionally as an adjective.

 

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