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Today we celebrate the Appearance of Lord Nityananda with a few select verses from the Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Adi Lila Chapter 5, entitled “The Glories of Lord Nityananda Balarama”.
“Let me offer my obeisances to Lord Śrī Nityānanda, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, whose opulence is wonderful and unlimited. By His will, even a fool can understand His identity.” (Adi 5.1)
“The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Kṛṣṇa, is the fountainhead of all incarnations. Lord Balarāma is His second body.” (Adi 5.4)
“That original Lord Kṛṣṇa appeared in Navadvīpa as Lord Caitanya, and Balarāma appeared with Him as Lord Nityānanda.” (Adi 5.6)
By His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda
Ādi-līlā, Chapter 5, Text 1-12
The Glories of Lord Nityānanda Balarāma
vande—let me offer my obeisances; ananta—unlimited; adbhuta—and wonderful; aiśvaryam—whose opulence; śrī-nityānandam—unto Lord Nityānanda; īśvaram—the Supreme Personality of Godhead; yasya—whose; icchayā—by the will; tat-svarūpam—His identity; ajñena—by the ignorant; api—even; nirūpyate—can be ascertained.
Let me offer my obeisances to Lord Śrī Nityānanda, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, whose opulence is wonderful and unlimited. By His will, even a fool can understand His identity.
jaya jaya śrī-caitanya jaya nityānanda
jayādvaita-candra jaya gaura-bhakta-vṛnda
jaya jaya—all glories; śrī-caitanya—to Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu; jaya nityānanda—all glories to Lord Nityānanda; jaya advaita-candra—all glories to Advaita Ācārya; jaya gaura-bhakta-vṛnda—all glories to the devotees of Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu.
All glories to Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. All glories to Lord Nityānanda. All glories to Advaita Ācārya. And all glories to all the devotees of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu.
ei ṣaṭ-śloke kahila kṛṣṇa-caitanya-mahimā
pañca-śloke kahi nityānanda-tattva-sīmā
ei—this; ṣaṭ-śloke—in six verses; kahila—described; kṛṣṇa-caitanya-mahimā—the glories of Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu; pañca-śloke—in five verses; kahi—let me explain; nityānanda—of Lord Nityānanda; tattva—of the truth; sīmā—the limitation.
I have described the glory of Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya in six verses. Now, in five verses, I shall describe the glory of Lord Nityānanda.
sarva-avatārī kṛṣṇa svayaṁ bhagavān
tāṅhāra dvitīya deha śrī-balarāma
sarva-avatārī—the source of all incarnations; kṛṣṇa—Lord Kṛṣṇa; svayam—personally; bhagavān—the Supreme Personality of Godhead; tāṅhāra—His; dvitīya—second; deha—expansion of the body; śrī-balarāma—Lord Balarāma.
The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Kṛṣṇa, is the fountainhead of all incarnations. Lord Balarāma is His second body.
Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the absolute Personality of Godhead, is the primeval Lord, the original form of Godhead, and His first expansion is Śrī Balarāma. The Personality of Godhead can expand Himself in innumerable forms. The forms that have unlimited potency are called svāṁśa, and forms that have limited potencies (the living entities) are called vibhinnāṁśa.
eka-i svarūpa doṅhe, bhinna-mātra kāya
ādya kāya-vyūha, kṛṣṇa-līlāra sahāya
eka-i—one; svarūpa—identity; doṅhe—both of Them; bhinna-mātra kāya—only two different bodies; ādya—original; kāya-vyūha—quadruple expansions; kṛṣṇa-līlāra—in the pastimes of Lord Kṛṣṇa; sahāya—assistance.
They are both one and the same identity. They differ only in form. He is the first bodily expansion of Kṛṣṇa, and He assists in Lord Kṛṣṇa’s transcendental pastimes.
Balarāma is a svāṁśa expansion of the Lord, and therefore there is no difference in potency between Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma. The only difference is in Their bodily structure. As the first expansion of Godhead, Balarāma is the chief Deity among the first quadruple forms, and He is the foremost assistant of Śrī Kṛṣṇa in His transcendental activities.
sei kṛṣṇa–navadvīpe śrī-caitanya-candra
sei balarāma–saṅge śrī-nityānanda
sei kṛṣṇa—that original Kṛṣṇa; navadvīpe—at Navadvīpa; śrī-caitanya-candra—Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu; sei balarāma—that Lord Balarāma; saṅge—with Him; śrī-nityānanda—Lord Nityānanda.
That original Lord Kṛṣṇa appeared in Navadvīpa as Lord Caitanya, and Balarāma appeared with Him as Lord Nityānanda.
garbhoda-śāyī ca payobdhi-śāyī
śeṣaś ca yasyāṁśa-kalāḥ sa nityā-
nandākhya-rāmaḥ śaraṇaṁ mamāstu
saṅkarṣaṇaḥ—Mahā-saṅkarṣaṇa in the spiritual sky; kāraṇa-toya-śāyī—Kāraṇodakaśāyī Viṣṇu, who lies in the Causal Ocean; garbha-uda-śāyī—Garbhodakaśāyī Viṣṇu, who lies in the Garbhodaka Ocean of the universe; ca—and; payaḥ-abdhi-śāyī—Kṣīrodakaśāyī Viṣṇu, who lies in the ocean of milk; śeṣaḥ—Śeṣa Nāga, the couch of Viṣṇu; ca—and; yasya—whose; aṁśa—plenary portions; kalāḥ—and parts of the plenary portions; saḥ—He; nityānanda-ākhya—known as Lord Nityānanda; rāmaḥ—Lord Balarāma; śaraṇam—shelter; mama—my; astu—let there be.
May Śrī Nityānanda Rāma be the object of my constant remembrance. Saṅkarṣaṇa, Śeṣa Nāga and the Viṣṇus who lie on the Kāraṇa Ocean, Garbha Ocean and ocean of milk are His plenary portions and the portions of His plenary portions.
Śrī Svarūpa Dāmodara Gosvāmī has recorded this verse in his diary to offer his respectful obeisances to Lord Nityānanda Prabhu. This verse also appears as the seventh of the first fourteen verses of Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta.
śrī-balarāma gosāñi mūla-saṅkarṣaṇa
pañca-rūpa dhari’ karena kṛṣṇera sevana
śrī-balarāma—Balarāma; gosāñi—the Lord; mūla-saṅkarṣaṇa—the original Saṅkarṣaṇa; pañca-rūpa dhari’-accepting five bodies; karena—does; kṛṣṇera—of Lord Kṛṣṇa; sevana—service.
Lord Balarāma is the original Saṅkarṣaṇa. He assumes five other forms to serve Lord Kṛṣṇa.
āpane karena kṛṣṇa-līlāra sahāya
sṛṣṭi-līlā-kārya kare dhari’ cāri kāya
āpane—personally; karena—performs; kṛṣṇa-līlāra sahāya—assistance in the pastimes of Lord Kṛṣṇa; sṛṣṭi-līlā—of the pastimes of creation; kārya—the work; kare—does; dhari’-accepting; cāri kāya—four bodies.
He Himself helps in the pastimes of Lord Kṛṣṇa, and He does the work of creation in four other forms.
sṛṣṭy-ādika sevā,–tāṅra ājñāra pālana
’śeṣa’-rūpe kare kṛṣṇera vividha sevana
sṛṣṭi-ādika sevā—service in the matter of creation; tāṅra—His; ājñāra—of the order; pālana—execution; śeṣa-rūpe—the form of Lord Śeṣa; kare—does; kṛṣṇera—of Lord Kṛṣṇa; vividha sevana—varieties of service.
He executes the orders of Lord Kṛṣṇa in the work of creation, and in the form of Lord Śeṣa He serves Kṛṣṇa in various ways.
According to expert opinion, Balarāma, as the chief of the original quadruple forms, is also the original Saṅkarṣaṇa. Balarāma, the first expansion of Kṛṣṇa, expands Himself in five forms: (1) Mahā-saṅkarṣaṇa, (2) Kāraṇābdhiśāyī, (3) Garbhodakaśāyī, (4) Kṣīrodakaśāyī, and (5) Śeṣa. These five plenary portions are responsible for both the spiritual and material cosmic manifestations. In these five forms Lord Balarāma assists Lord Kṛṣṇa in His activities. The first four of these forms are responsible for the cosmic manifestations, whereas Śeṣa is responsible for personal service to the Lord. Śeṣa is called Ananta, or unlimited, because He assists the Personality of Godhead in His unlimited expansions by performing an unlimited variety of services. Śrī Balarāma is the servitor Godhead who serves Lord Kṛṣṇa in all affairs of existence and knowledge. Lord Nityānanda Prabhu, who is the same servitor Godhead, Balarāma, performs the same service to Lord Gaurāṅga by constant association.
sarva-rūpe āsvādaye kṛṣṇa-sevānanda
sei balarāma–gaura-saṅge nityānanda
sarva-rūpe—in all these forms; āsvādaye—tastes; kṛṣṇa-sevā-ānanda—the transcendental bliss of serving Kṛṣṇa; sei balarāma—that Lord Balarāma; gaura-saṅge—with Gaurasundara; nityānanda—Lord Nityānanda.
In all the forms He tastes the transcendental bliss of serving Kṛṣṇa. That same Balarāma is Lord Nityānanda, the companion of Lord Gaurasundara.