Datta Kaustubham - by Bhaktivinoda ThakurDatta Kaustubham – Verses 51-60
Datta Kaustubham - by Bhaktivinoda ThakurDatta Kaustubham – Verses 71-80

Datta Kaustubham
Verses 61 – 70

by Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura
(translated by Swami Bhakti Vijñāna Giri)

ārurukṣas tathārūḍhaḥ sampanno yoginas tridhā
ūrdhvodhvagāminaḥ śaśvan nābaddha vidhi-bandhane

The yogīs, who are not bound by rules, are always ascending to higher states. Ārurukṣa (desiring yogic achievement), ārūḍha (advanced yoga) and sampanna (perfection in yoga) – these are the three kinds of states.

kvacit karma kvacit jñānaṁ yad yadā prītaye kṣamam
kurvanti yoginas tat-tat-tyajanti na kṣamaṁ yadā

The aforementioned yogīs sometimes perform karma and sometimes jñāna, whenever that is useful for achieving divine love (prīti). When it is not appropriate, then they abandon it.


Now, the author of this philosophical treatise describes the combination of karma, jñāna and bhakti. The samanvaya-yogīs (those that combine these methods) are of three types – ārurukṣa, ārūḍha and sampanna. Amongst defective practitioners in relation to karma, jñāna and bhakti, there are two kinds of eligible persons – the sāragrāhī and the bhāravāhī. For those who are bhāravāhīs, the struggle of various types of karma is best for them. This is because hard work does not give rise to impious acts (pāpa). Their objective is atonement through karma. Also, those persons who are sāragrāhīs have a tendency to advance in samanvaya-yoga due to their strong desire to progress. They swiftly attain the advanced stage of yoga (ārūḍha). Eventually, by the power of their sādhana and their tendency to accept that which is essential, those on the platform of ārūḍha quickly attain perfection (sampanna). Repentance is the atonement to eliminate pāpa for those persons at the stage of ārurukṣa, and the only atonement for those at the stage of ārūḍha is the remembrance of Hari. In this regard, one should consider the lives of Parikṣit, Khaṭvāṅga etc. All these yogīs were not merely aspiring for karma, jñāna or renunciation. Due to lack of knowledge concerning this yoga (samanvaya-yoga), or due to the influence of bewilderment, defective jñānīs find attraction in various things that help destroy material bondage such as renunciation etc. Sometimes they engage in gross karma and they criticise renunciation. Sometimes they become devoted to jñāna and become indifferent to practices which are of value to the body, home and wife. However, while they are in a state of bondage, the samanvaya-yogīs uses the body, home, wife etc. in the process of attaining love for Bhagavān for the benefit of all. At all times they constantly endeavor in their sādhana, and due to the strength of their tendency to advance, they accept the substantial explanations of all rules and prohibitions and eventually achieve the wealth of prema. When karma and jñāna are conducive to bhakti, they also perform these with the utmost care. If at any time, considering place, time and circumstances, there is no increase in love to Bhagavān through these, then they give up this karma or jñāna, considering them completely fit to be rejected – this is a great secret. Having insufficient intelligence, those persons who are bhāravāhīs have no entrance into this mystery. At the time of advancing in yoga, all these impurities are seen to gradually burn away. From time to time, when akarma and vikarma does occur, it does not produce the reaction of worldly miseries in the end because the yogī has already attained the result of eradicating his karma. The contamination of a jīva in the perfected state is prominent in the account of Śrī Nārada. With this consideration, we accept the gradual suspension of material life in a natural way as with Ṛṣabhdeva, Jaḍa Bharata etc. where jīvas who have attained divine love are unable to perform mundane duties due to their love for Bhagavān. Renunciation of material life by deceitful persons based only upon various kinds of deception is condemned as useless.

prayojanañca jīvānāṁ na muktir laya-lakṣaṇā
na bhuktiḥ sampadāṁ kintu prītiḥ kṛṣṇāśayātmikā

Material enjoyment is not the ultimate necessity of the jīva, and the liberation of merging is not his objective. However, the jīva’s necessity, or true goal of human life is prīti which takes the form of accepting Kṛṣṇa’s shelter.

aśuddha buddhayo bālyāc-chāstrāṇāṁ bhāra-vāhinaḥ
asac-chikṣā vimūḍhā ye na cordhvagamane ratāḥ

sampradāya malāsaktā na yogena samanvitāḥ
jātyāder mala-saṁyuktā vadanty anyat prayojanam

Those who possess an impure intellect from childhood, who are burdened by the heavy load of the śāstra, who are ignorant due to the result of wrong teachings, who are not interested in progressing, who are attached to impurities found within the sampradāya, who are bereft of yoga and sādhana, who are concerned with the faults of one’s birth etc. – they speak of other things as the actual objective or ultimate goal of human life.


“What is the necessity of the whole world contemplating the primary objective?” The answer to the opposition is explained in the ślokas beginning with prayojanañca etc. One should understand that prayojana refers to the complete result. If defective sādhakas become jñānīs, then their objective is the liberation of merging, and they endeavour for that purpose. If they become karmīs, then they establish the enjoyment of sense-objects to be their objective. However, tendency or taste is the ultimate origin. By the influence of association or through the affects of saṁskāras (mental disposition which shapes one’s life), one’s inclination accepts a nature which is either constrictive or expanding. Love for Bhagavān is the inherent inclination of the jīvas. In relation to those jīvas who are averse to Him, their inclination is drawn towards material sense-objects, in other words, they are attracted to materialism. If he accepts his previous inherent nature, then that is auspicious – otherwise it all becomes useless. If the jīva’s intellect is contaminated from childhood due to bad association, erroneous teachings, malice within the sampradāya, prejudice (narrow-mindedness), the heavy burden of śāstra, envy based on caste etc. then the desire for sense-enjoyment, liberation etc. becomes stronger and love for Bhagavān becomes crippled. Absorbed in these restrictions, such unfortunate persons cannot understand prema to be the ultimate goal of human life (one’s inherent puruṣārtha). In fact, only transcendental love for Bhagavān is worthy to be called the supreme goal of human life.

bhuktyo muktayaḥ kintu na nivāryāḥ kadācana
tā  gauna-phalam-rūpeṇa sevante sādhakaṁ  kila

However, bhukti and mukti are never prohibited. The serve the sādhaka in the form of indirect results.


“If that is so, then how can a sādhaka maintain his life, or a siddha (perfected souls) survive?” In answer to this doubt, it is said bhuktyaḥ etc. All actions have an intermediate result. Satisfaction of the self can also be seen in acts of worship. Even in selfless acts of good in the world, some other purpose can be observed. For example, in the use of steam-engines, telegraph etc. there is a primary or superior result that exists in the quest for truth through the spread of knowledge, or by going to a far off place to take darśana of a sādhu by the movement of the body – yet one also experiences happiness in the form of seeing distant lands and engaging in requirements for one’s household as an intermediate result. Creating Vaiṣṇava children, by which the world is made blissful, brings the highest happiness and is the primary result – yet sense pleasure is inevitable.

muktir hitvānyatha-rūpam svarūpeṇa vyavasthitiḥ

Mukti is being situated in one’s svarūpa and rejecting all other forms.” (Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 2.10.6)

According to this authoritative statement of the Bhāgavata, the inevitable result of sambandha-jñāna is mukti for the devotees of Bhagavān. This kind of intermediate result occurs in all activities. It is for this reason that the sāragrāhī devotees will turn those results into a means of achieving the objective of prema. Sense-enjoyment, liberation etc. are impediments for the jīva who is averse to the Lord who fully identifies with the results of karma. However, in relation to the sāragrāhī, they all assist him attain the goal of human life. Those persons who are sāragrāhīs never search for intermediate results. However, when those results appear by themselves, they serve the sādhaka and help him achieve divine love.

ākarṣa-sannidhau lauhaḥ pravṛtto dṛśyate yathā
aṇormahiti caitanye pravṛttiḥ prīti-lakṣaṇam

Just as iron is seen to move, being attracted to a magnet, similarly, the finite consciousness’s tendency (or taste) towards the Infinite Consciousness is a symptom of prīti.


Now the symptoms of prīti are described in the śloka beginning with ākarṣa etc. Just as iron is naturally attracted to a magnet, so the jīva with finite consciousness is attracted to the infinite consciousnesses of the Supreme God due to his tendency – that is prīti. Maharṣi Śāṇḍilya has also given this sūtra in his book on bhakti-mīmāṁsā:

īśvara parānurakti bhakti

Bhakti is great attraction to the Supreme.” (Śāṇḍilya Bhakti Sūtra 2)

Bhagavān is like the sun. The jīva is like an atomic ray. The jīva and Īśvara are one in that their forms are intrinsically cit (spiritual consciousness). All consciousness beings are eternally attracted to one another. Moreover, the attraction of the less conscious beings towards the greater conscious Entity is eternally effected. All atoms in this physical world obey the laws of attraction – this is according to the theory of physicists. This proves that the physical world is a reflection of the spiritual world. Again, in the form of gravity, such attraction is immensely powerful in large gross objects such as the sun etc. That is why planets revolve around the sun and much greater celestial objects all revolve around the Dhruva constellation (Pole Star). The created universe is a reflection of Vaikuṇṭha and is extremely beautiful. One should understand the complete transcendental conception of attraction belonging to the mahā-rasa in the pastimes of Vraja in Vaikuṇṭha.

sambandhāt pratibimbasya baddha jīve sambhāvataḥ
karma-jñānātmikā sā tu bhakti-nāmnā mahīyate

However, due to the bound jīva’s relationship with the reflection of prīti (māyā), he naturally reveres karma and jñāna in the name of bhakti.

vaimukhyāṭ pratibimbe ced āsaktir upajāyate
sā caiva viṣaya-prītir mūḍhanām asatī hṛdi

If attachment towards the reflection (in other words, the shadow-world) is born due to the influence of aversion to the Supreme, then such love within the hearts of fools, is unchaste. In other words, that unchaste love is directed towards material sense-objects.


This love of the jīva, which is situated in his heart, due to the relationship with the shadow of māyā, naturally takes on the forms of karma and jñāna and achieves respect in the name of bhakti from common people. However, if due to ignorance, the jīva’s attachment to the reflected world is born, then the love of that jīva who is averse to the Supreme takes on the form of love for material sense-objects. Being the cause of bondage for the jīva, it becomes māyā. This is because prīti or māyā are dependent upon Bhagavān.

yā prītir avivekānāṁ viṣayeṣv-anapāyinī
tvāṁ anusmarataḥ sā me hṛdayān nāpasarpatu

“The same constant love that those who are indiscriminate feel for the sense objects – may such constant love never leave my heart as I always remember You.” (Viṣṇu Purāṇa 1.20.19)

This has been stated by Śrī Prahlāda in Śrī Viṣṇu Purāṇa.

Here, the word pratibimba (reflection) should not be understood to refer to the theory of Pratibimbavāda, that there is a reflection of Bhagavān.* However, the world is a reflection of the transcendental nature of the transformation of Bhagavān’s potency – this should be understood.

*Translator’s Note: The impersonal philosophy of Pratibimbavāda postulates that the jīvas are merely a reflection of Brahman, just as the sun may be reflected in many pots of water.

ratyādi bhāva-paryantaṁ svarūpa-lakṣaṇaṁ param
kartṛ-karma vibhedena prīteḥ sāmbandhikaṁ hi tat

Rati (attachment) extends to the primary svarūpa-lakṣāna (inherent characteristics) of prīti and then mahābhāva. This is in relation to the divisions of doer (the devotee) and the object of activities (the Supreme).


Ratyādi bhāva-paryantaṁ – this śloka describes the svarūpalakṣaṇa of prīti in its different stages. The  sequence is rati, prema, sneha, māna, praṇaya, rāga, anurāga, bhāva and mahābhāva.

cittam ullāsayati mamatayā yojayati visrambhayati priyatv-ātiśayenābhimānayati drāvayati sva-viṣayaṁ praty-abhilāṣātiśayena yojayati pratikṣaṇam eva sva-viṣayaṁ nava-navatvenānubhāvayati asamordhva-camatkāreṇonmādayati ca

“This boundless rati brings bliss to the heart, then it creates a mood of possessiveness, creates confidence, makes one proud with excessive prema, melts the heart, creates an intensity for one’s desired object, forces one to think about one’s desired object in ever-fresh ways at every moment, and produces madness through unparalleled astonishment.” (Prīti Sandarbha 84)

This is what Śrī Jīva Gosvāmīpāda has said. This much is the svarūpa-lakṣaṇa. In relation to the doer and the object of the activities of the doer, there are two kinds of sambandhika-lakṣaṇas (relational characteristics). In regards to the doer (the devotee), the five kinds of rasas are śānta, dāsya, sakhya, vātsalya and madhura. Śānta-rasa only has pure rati. Dāsya has rati and prema. Sakhya has rati, prema and praṇaya. Vātsalya has rati, prema, praṇaya, sneha up to prīti. And śrṅgāra (madhura) is seen to have everything up to prīti and extends to mahābhāva.

In relation to the object of activity (the Supreme Lord) there are two kinds of rasamādhuryātmaka (that which is invested with sweetness) and aiśvaryātmaka (that which is invested with reverence). This should be noted during the analysis on āśraya (the Lord’s shelter).

Datta Kaustubham - by Bhaktivinoda ThakurDatta Kaustubham – Verses 51-60
Datta Kaustubham - by Bhaktivinoda ThakurDatta Kaustubham – Verses 71-80

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