Madhyāhna-kālīya-bhajana – ruci-bhajana
(from the second prahara until three-and-a-half praharas: approximately 11.00 A.M. – 3.30 P.M.)
A nāma-sādhaka has no desire other than unadulterated devotional service to Kṛṣṇa (ahaitukī-kṛṣṇa-bhakti). The fourth verse of Śikṣāṣṭaka states:
na dhanaṁ na janaṁ na sundarīṁ
kavitāṁ vā jagadīśa kāmaye
mama janmani janmanīśvare
bhavatād bhaktir ahaitukī tvayi
O Jagadīśa, I do not desire wealth, nor followers, nor do I desire beautiful poetry (here meaning “knowledge”). O Prāṇeśvara, my only desire is to have unalloyed devotion unto Your lotus feet birth after birth.
strī-putra dāsa-dāsī kuṭumbādi jana
kāvya-alaṅkāra-ādi sundarī kavitā
pārthiva-viṣaya madhye e saba vāratā
ei saba pāivāra āśā nāhi kari
śuddha-bhakti deha more, kṛṣṇa kṛpā kari’
premera svabhāva, yāhā premera sambandha
sei māne kṛṣṇa mora nāhi bhakti-gandha
Misusing material wealth and so forth is opposed to bhakti. Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (3.9.6) states:
tāvad bhayaṁ draviṇa-deha-suhṛn-nimittaṁ
śokaḥ spṛhā paribhavo vipulaś ca lobhaḥ
tāvan mamety asad-avagraha ārti-mūlaṁ
yāvan na te ’ṅghrim abhayaṁ pravṛṇīta lokaḥ
As long as a person does not take shelter of Your lotus feet, which remove all kinds of fear, he will be tormented by anxiety, sorrow, hankering, wretchedness, extreme greed and so forth caused by wealth, home, friends and relatives. He will maintain the misconception of “I” and “mine”, which is the sole cause of unhappiness.
dravya-deha-suhṛn-nimitta śoka bhaya
spṛhā parābhava āra lobha atiśaya
āmi mama ārti-mūla asat-āśaya
yata dina nahe tava pāda-padmāśraya
Śrī Kṛṣṇa is the supreme Lord of all lords, and by worshipping Him, all others are worshipped. Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (4.31.14) states:
yathā taror mūla-niṣecanena
prāṇopahārāc ca yathendriyāṇāṁ
tathaiva sarvārhaṇam acyutejyā
By watering the root of a tree, all its parts, such as the trunk, branches and sub-branches, are nourished, and by satisfying the life-airs through eating, all of the senses are nourished. Similarly, only by worshipping Śrī Kṛṣṇa are the demigods, forefathers and so forth worshipped.
taru-mūle dile jala, bhuja-śākhā-skandha
tṛpta haya anāyāse, sahaja nirbandha
prāṇera tarpaṇe yathā indriya sabala
kṛṣṇārcane tathā sarva-devatā śītala
Unalloyed devotees have no other duty than serving Kṛṣṇa. The Padma Purāṇa states:
harir eva sadārādhyaḥ sarva-deveśvareśvaraḥ
itare brahma-rudrādyā nāvajñeyāḥ kadācana
The Lord of all demigods, Śrī Hari, is always the only worshipful object, but it is improper to disrespect Brahmā, Rudra and other demigods.
ādau sarveśvara-jñāna kṛṣṇete haibe
anya deve kabhu nāhi avajñā karibe
One should not increase the number of his unqualified disciples on the pretext of spreading bhakti. Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (7.13.8) states:
na śiṣyān anubadhnīta granthān naivābhyased bahūn
na vyākhyām upayuñjīta nārambhān ārabhet kvacit
One should not make many disciples for material gain, nor study many books, nor give discourses on śāstra to earn one’s livelihood. One should also give up large undertakings.
bahu-śiṣya-lobhete ayogya śiṣya kare
bhakti-śūnya śāstrābhyāse tarka kari’ mare
vyākhyāvāda-bahvārambhe vṛthā kāla yāya
nāme yāra ruci sei e saba nā cāya
Exclusive and unmotivated devotional service, known as aikāntikīahaitukī- bhakti, is described in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (1.2.14):
tasmād ekena manasā bhagavān sātvatāṁ patiḥ
śrotavyaḥ kīrtitavyaś ca dhyeyaḥ pūjyaś ca nityadā
With an attentive mind, one should constantly hear about, glorify, meditate upon and worship Bhagavān, who is loving towards His devotees (bhakta-vatsala). All the while, one should endeavour to remove his anarthas. Then his creeper of devotion will very quickly bestow its fruit in the form of prema.
ananya-bhāvete kara śravaṇa-kīrtana
saṅge saṅge anartha-nāśera yatna kara
bhakti-latā phala-dāna karibe satvara
One should not be disturbed by the loss of acquired assets. In this regard Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu (1.2.114) quotes the Padma Purāṇa:
alabdhe vā vinaṣṭe vā bhakṣyācchādana-sādhane
aviklava-matir bhūtvā harim eva dhiyā smaret
One who is devoted to hari-bhakti should remain undisturbed and continue remembering Hari, even if he is unsuccessful in obtaining food and clothing, or if what he has obtained is lost.
bhakṣya-ācchādana yadi sahaje nā pāya
athavā pāiyā kona gatike hārāya
nāmāśrita bhakta aviklava-mati haiyā
govinda śaraṇa laya āsakti chāḍiyā
Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu (1.2.113), quoting from the Padma Purāṇa, mentions the necessity of giving up distress:
śokāmarṣādibhir bhāvair ākrāntaṁ yasya mānasam
kathaṁ tatra mukundasya sphūrtiḥ sambhāvanā bhavet
How can Mukunda manifest in the heart of a person who is filled with lamentation, anger and so forth?
putra kalatrera śoka, krodha, abhimāna
ye hṛdaye tāhe kṛṣṇa sphūrti nāhi pāna
One should accept only as much wealth as is necessary to maintain his life. The Nāradīya Purāṇa states:
yāvatā syāt sva-nirvāhaḥ svīkuryāt tāvad arthavit
ādhikye nyūnatāyāṁ ca cyavate paramārthataḥ
A sādhaka who needs to maintain himself will collect only as much wealth and other material necessities as are required to maintain his bhakti; to accept too much or too little will surely make him deviate from his goal.
dravyādi svīkāra kare bhakta nahe bhogī
The symptoms of advancement in unmotivated devotional service are given in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (11.2.42):
bhaktiḥ pareśānubhavo viraktir
anyatra caiṣa trika eka-kālaḥ
prapadyamānasya yathāśnataḥ syus
tuṣṭiḥ puṣṭiḥ kṣud-apāyo ’nu-ghāsam
With each morsel of food that a hungry person eats, he simultaneously experiences satisfaction, nourishment and relief from hunger. Similarly a surrendered devotee, who is engaged in the performance of bhakti, simultaneously realises his worshipful deity, strengthens his relationship with that deity and becomes detached from this temporary world and material relationships.
bhakta-jane samamāne yugapad udaya
bhakti, jñāna, virakti, tina jānaha niścaya
cid-acid-īśvara sambandha-jñāne jñāna
kṛṣṇetare anāsakti virakti-pramāṇa
ye rūpa bhajane tuṣṭi puṣṭi pratigrāse
kṣudhāra nivṛtti ei tina anāyāse
The following verse is a petition made at the stage of humility described in the previous Texts. Prahlāda Mahārāja (Śrīmad- Bhāgavatam (7.9.39)) prays:
naitan manas tava kathāsu vikuṇṭha-nātha
samprīyate durita-duṣṭam asādhu tīvram
tasmin kathaṁ tava gatiṁ vimṛśāmi dīnaḥ
O Vaikuṇṭhanātha, my mind is polluted by the desire to sin. How can I explain to You the suffering of my mind, which is constantly afflicted by desires? My mind, strongly attached to these desires, is sometimes overpowered by happiness and sometimes by distress and fear. It is always engaged in collecting wealth and material assets, and it finds no taste in the narrations of Your pastimes. How, then, can I remember and meditate upon You?
durita-dūṣita mana asādhu mānasa
kāma-harṣa-śoka-bhaya eṣaṇāra vaśa
tava kathā-rati kise haibe āmāra?
kise kṛṣṇa tava līlā kariba vicāra?
Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (7.9.40) explains how life is completely destroyed by attraction to the form, taste and so on of material objects:
jihvaikato ’cyuta vikarṣati māvitṛptā
śiśno ’nyatas tvag-udaraṁ śravaṇaṁ kutaścit
ghrāṇo ’nyataś capala-dṛk kva ca karma-śaktir
bahvyaḥ sapatnya iva geha-patiṁ lunanti
O Acyuta, my tongue is pulling me towards very relishable flavours, my genitals towards beautiful women, my stomach towards foodstuffs that are harmful, my ears towards sweet songs and useless talk, my nose towards pleasant fragrances, my eyes towards beauty and my sense of touch towards soft things. In this way all my sense organs are pulling me towards their respective sense objects. O Nanda-nandana, my situation is like that of a man with many wives, each dragging him towards her own bedroom. In such a condition how can I remember You and Your form, qualities and pastimes?
jihvā ṭāne rasa prati, upastha kadarthe
udara bhojane ṭāne viṣama anarthe
carma ṭāne śayyādite, śravaṇa kathāya
ghrāṇa ṭāne surabhite, cakṣu dṛśye yāya
karmendriya karme ṭāne, bahu-patnī yathā
gṛhapati ākarṣaya, mora mana tathā
emata avasthā mora śrī-nanda-nandana
ki rūpe tomāra līlā kariba smaraṇa?
A prayer for obtaining the association of vraja-bhaktas is spoken by Lord Brahmā in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (10.14.30):
tad astu me nātha sa bhūri-bhāgo
bhave ’tra vānyatra tu vā tiraścām
yenāham eko ’pi bhavaj-janānāṁ
bhūtvā niṣeve tava pāda-pallavam
O Bhagavān, may I be so fortunate as to attain the association of Your devotees and, under their guidance, obtain service to Your lotus feet; be it in this or any other human birth, or in a birth such as an animal, bird, worm or moth.
ei brahma janmei vā anya kona bhave
paśu-pakṣī ha’ye janmi tomāra vibhave
ei mātra āśā tava bhakta-gaṇa-saṅge
thāki’ tava pada-sevā kari nānā-raṅge
It is useless to be anxious about attaining the four goals of life. Śrī Uddhava explains in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (3.4.15):
ko nv īśa te pāda-saroja-bhājāṁ
sudurlabho ’rtheṣu caturṣv apīha
tathāpi nāhaṁ pravṛṇomi bhūman
O Lord, it is not difficult for one who has taken shelter of Your lotus feet to achieve the four goals of life (religiosity, economic development, sense gratification and liberation); nevertheless, such a person does not desire them. O Great One, he is not concerned with anything other than rendering service to Your lotus feet.
kṛṣṇa! tava pāda-padme bhakti āche yāṅra
catur-varga-madhye kivā aprāpya tāṅhāra
tathāpi tomāra pada-sevā mātra cāi
anya kona arthe mora prayojana nāi
One should endeavour to attain pure unalloyed devotion (śuddha-ahaitukī-bhakti). Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (1.5.18) states:
tasyaiva hetoḥ prayateta kovido
na labhyate yad bhramatām uparyadhaḥ
tal labhyate duḥkhavad-anyataḥ sukhaṁ
kālena sarvatra gabhīra-raṁhasā
[Śrī Nārada said:] In the course of time I have been wandering from the seven higher planets to the seven lower, such as Sutalaloka, but I have not attained eternal, transcendental happiness, which wise persons endeavour to taste. Just as misery comes without endeavour, by the influence of grave, quicklymoving time, happiness also comes without any endeavour. What, therefore, is the use of endeavouring for worldly happiness?
vinā yatne duḥkhera ghaṭanā yena haya
sei rūpe kāla-krame sukhera udaya
ataeva caudda-loke durlabha ye dhana
sei bhakti-janya yatna kare budha-gaṇa
The desire for liberation is made insignificant by ahaitukī-bhakti. Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (4.9.10) states:
yā nirvṛtis tanu-bhṛtāṁ tava pāda-padmadhyānād
bhavaj-jana-kathā-śravaṇena vā syāt
sā brahmaṇi sva-mahimany api nātha mā bhūt
kiṁ tv antakāsi-lulitāt patatāṁ vimānāt
O Lord, a drop of the bliss received from meditating on Your lotus feet, from hearing about Your pastimes – which flow from the mouths of Your devotees who are expert in relishing vrajarasa – and from hearing descriptions of Your devotees’ pastimes, is not available in the bliss of merging into Brahman. What to speak of being available to others, it is not even available to the demigods of the heavenly planets, who fall down again, being cut by the sword of time.
tava pada-dhyāne bhakta-mukha tava kathā
śravaṇe ye sukha tāhā māgiye sarvathā
brahma-sukha nāhi bhāla lāge mora mane
ki chāra anitya loka-sukha-saṅghaṭane
The glory of hearing the holy name from the mouth of a sādhu is described in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (4.20.24):
na kāmaye nātha tad apy ahaṁ kvacin
na yatra yuṣmac-caraṇāmbujāsavaḥ
vidhatsva karṇāyutam eṣa me varaḥ
O Lord, I do not want liberation. I receive no pleasure in hearing any topic other than the glorious narrations of the nectar of Your lotus feet. This nectar emanates from the mouths of saintly persons from deep within their hearts. I beg only for the boon that You will give me ten thousand ears with which I can always hear the sweetness of Your pastimes.
yāhāte tomāra pada-sevā-sukha nāi
sei rūpa vara āmi nātha kabhu nāhi cāi
bhaktera hṛdaya haite tava guṇa-gāna
śunite ayuta karṇa karaha vidhāna
Residence in the heavenly planets, residence in Brahmaloka, sovereignty over the Earth and lower planetary systems, the perfections of yoga and the eighteen mystic perfections are all insignificant from the perspective of a devotee. This is confirmed in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (6.11.25):
na nāka-pṛṣṭhaṁ na ca pārameṣṭhyaṁ
na sārva-bhaumaṁ na rasādhipatyam
na yoga-siddhīr apunar-bhavaṁ vā
samañjasa tvā virahayya kāṅkṣe
O source of all good fortune, I have no desire to have a position of great sovereignty like that of Dhruva or Brahmā, or rulership over the Earth; nor do I desire aṇimā or any other mystic perfection. I do not even want liberation, if attaining it means I would have to give You up.
svarga parameṣṭhī-sthāna, sarvabhauma-pada
rasātala-ādhipatya, yogera sampada
nirvāṇa ityādi yata chāḍi’ sevā tava
nāhi māgi, e mora pratijñā akaitava
The symptom of attachment (āsakti) that is developed by taking shelter of the holy name is described in Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (10.29.34):
cittaṁ sukhena bhavatāpahṛtaṁ gṛheṣu
yan nirviśaty uta karāv api gṛhya-kṛtye
pādau padaṁ na calatas tava pāda-mūlād
yāmaḥ kathaṁ vrajamatho karavāma kiṁ vā
[The gopīs said to Kṛṣṇa:] O stealer of minds (cittacora), by playing on Your vaṁśī, You have stolen our minds, which were absorbed in household affairs. This was not difficult for You. However, having lost our minds, our working senses are not functioning, and our movements and intelligence have therefore become abnormal. Our feet do not want to leave You to go anywhere else. Please tell us then, how can we possibly return to our homes?
gṛhasukhe citta chila, gṛhakārye kara
hariyā layecha tumi prāṇera īśvara
tava pādamūla chāḍi’ pada nāhi yāya
yāba kothā ki kariba balaha upāya
As described in the following verse, all virtue and peacefulness appear in the devotee. Prahlāda Mahārāja explains in Śrīmad- Bhāgavatam (5.18.12):
yasyāsti bhaktir bhagavaty akiñcanā
sarvair guṇais tatra samāsate surāḥ
harāv abhaktasya kuto mahad-guṇā
manorathenāsati dhāvato bahiḥ
All the demigods and their exalted qualities, such as religiosity and knowledge, always dwell in the heart of a person who possesses selfless devotion to Bhagavān (niṣkāma-bhakti). But how can a person who is not a devotee of Bhagavān possess these qualities of great personalities? He constantly runs after insignificant and superfluous things, even after taking many different vows to renounce them.
akiñcanā bhakti yāṅra tāṅhāra śarīre
sarva-guṇa saha sarva-devatā vihare
abhakta sarvadā mano-rathete caḍiyā
asad bāhye bhrame guṇa varjita haiyā
Bhakti destroys the egoism arising from falsely identifying the body with the self (deha-abhimāna). This is stated in Śrīmad- Bhāgavatam (4.11.30):
tvaṁ pratyag ātmani tadā bhagavaty ananta
bhaktiṁ vidhāya paramāṁ śanakair avidyā
granthiṁ vibhetsyasi mamāham iti prarūḍham
[Manu said to Dhruva:] By searching for Bhagavān Ananta, who possesses all potencies, who is the embodiment of supreme transcendental bliss and who resides within all living entities as the Supersoul, your devotion will become very steady. On the strength of that devotion you will be able to cut the tight knot of ignorance in the form of the false conceptions of “I” and “mine”.
manu bale dhruva tumi dhṛta sarva-śakti
pratyak ānanda-rūpa kṛṣṇe kara bhakti
chedana karite krame haibe sakṣama
Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (4.22.39) states:
karmāśayaṁ grathitam udgrathayanti santaḥ
tadvan na rikta-matayo yatayo ’pi ruddhasroto-
gaṇās tam araṇaṁ bhaja vāsudevam
[Śrī Sanat Kumāra instructed Pṛthu Mahārāja:] The devotees of Bhagavān are easily able to cut the knot in the heart in the form of desires for fruitive activities by meditating upon the splendour that emanates from the toes of Bhagavān’s lotus feet. However, impersonalist yogīs, who are devoid of loving devotion, cannot do so even by controlling their senses. Therefore give up the endeavours of jñāna, yoga and so forth, and engage in bhajana of Vāsudeva-Kṛṣṇa.
pratyāhāre ruddha-mati yogeśvara-gana
kadāca karite pāre yāhā sampādana
sei karmāśaya granthi kāṭe sādhu-gaṇa
yāṅra kṛpā-bale, laha tāṅhāra śaraṇa
An introduction to the midday pastimes (madhyāhna-līlā) is found in Govinda-līlāmṛta (8.1):
rādhā-kṛṣṇau satṛṣṇau parijana-ghaṭayā sevyamānau smarāmi
I meditate upon Śrī Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa, who at midday enjoy each other’s company while being beautifully decorated with various bhāvas, such as aṣṭa-sāttvika-bhāvas and vyabhicāri-bhāvas. They become extremely restless due to contrariness (vāmya) and yearning (utkaṇṭhā). In Their amorous play (kandarpa-yajña) the joking words of Śrī Lalitā and the other sakhīs give Them much pleasure. They blissfully enjoy sports like swinging (jhūlā), frolicking in the forest (vana-vihāra), playing in the water (jala-keli), stealing the flute (vaṁśī-haraṇa), amorous meeting (rati-krīḍā), drinking honey (madhu-pāna), worshipping the Sun-god (sūrya-pūjā) and many other kinds of pastimes while being served by Their dear ones.
rādhā-kuṇḍe sumilana, vikārādi-vibhūṣaṇa,
sambhoga-narmādi-rīti, dolā-khelā vaṁśī-hṛti,
madhu-pāna, sūrya-pūja khelā
jala-khelā, vanyāśana, chala-supti, vanyāṭana,
bahu-līlānande dui jane
parijana suveṣṭita, rādhā-kṛṣṇa susevita,
madhyāhna-kālete smari mane
Thus ends the Caturtha-yāma-sādhana, Madhyāhna-kālīya-bhajana, of Śrī Bhajana-rahasya.