saguNa and nirguNa (continued)

Anand Hudli anandhudli at HOTMAIL.COM
Thu Nov 18 15:31:50 CST 1999

Continuing the section "saguNanirguNayoraikyam.h" of
 the prabodha-sudhAkara:

 nanvAtmanaH sakAshAdutpannA jIvasantatishcheyam.h |
 jagataH priyatara AtmA tatprakR^ite naiva saMbhavati ||

 (An objection is raised:) This succession of living entities
 originates from the Self. The Self is dearer than the world.
 This is not possible in the subject (Krishna) being discussed.

 The objector maintains that all the jIvas originate from the
 Self. The Self is dearer than anything else. But how can
 Krishna, who appears as a human being, be the Self? How can
 He be the origin of all jIvas? He is not. If He were to be the Self,
 then why does not everybody hold Him dearer than everything else?


 vatsAharaNAvasare pR^ithagvayorUpavAsanabhUshhAn.h |
 harirajamohaM kartuM savatsagopAnvinirmame svasmAt.h ||

 During the episode of (BrahmA's) taking away of the calves, Hari
 created from Himself the calves and the accompanying cowherd boys
 of different ages, appearances, clothes, and ornaments, in order
 to delude (teach a lesson to) BrahmA.

 This is apparently a reference to the episode in the BhAgavata,
 when Krishna is still a boy. BrahmA takes away the calves of Krishna
 and His cowherd friends. It so happens that the boys are having lunch
 with Krishna when they notice they are missing the calves. Krishna
 sets out in search of the calves but cannot find them. When He
 returns to the lunch area, He sees that the cowherd boys too are
 missing. Realizing that this is the handiwork of BrahmA the Creator,
 Krishna plays Creator Himself by re-creating the calves and the
 cowherd boys with all their ornaments and paraphernalia, exactly
 as they were before.

 agneryathA sphuliN^gAH xudrAstu vyuchcharantIti |
 shrutyarthaM darshayituM svatanoratanotsa jIvasandoham.h ||

 "As tiny sparks fly out from fire": In order to illustrate the
 meaning of this statement from the shruti (muNDaka upanishhad 2.1.1),
 Krishna created this collection of living beings from His own form.

 [ "yathA sudIptAtpAvakAtvisphuliN^gAH sahasrashaH prabhavante sarUpAH|
   tathAxarAdvividhAH somya bhAvAH prajAyante tatra chaivApi yanti||"
     (muNDaka upanishhad 2.1.1) ]

 yamunAtIranikuJNje kadAchidapi vatsakAMshcha chArayati |
 kR^ishhNe tathAryagopeshhu cha varagoshhTheshhu chArayatsvArAt.h ||

 Once (after the re-creation of the cowherd boys and calves), Krishna
 was minding the calves in an area overgrown with shrubs and grass on
 the banks of the YamunA river. At a distance were elder cowherds
 watching over cows grazing in excellent meadows.

 vatsaM nirIxya dUrAdgAvaH snehena saMbhrAntAH |
 tadabhimukhaM dhAvantyaH prayayurgopaishcha durvArAH ||

 Having seen her calf from a distance, each cow was overcome by affection,
 and started running towards the calves. The cows could not be prevented
 from running thus by (even the experienced elder) cowherds.

 prasravabhareNa bhUyaH srutastanAH prApya pUrvavadvatsAn.h |
 pR^ithurasanayA lihantyastarNakavatyo .apyapAyayanpramudA ||

 As the cows ran to their calves, their udders were frequently
 overflowing with excess of milk. Having reached their respective
 calves, as before, the cows fed the calves with milk and stood
 affectionately licking the calves with their large tongues as they
 fed. (The cows exhibited this behavior even though) they had calves
 that had been born after the calves that they were now feeding.
 (In other words, it was quite unusual for the cows to have behaved
 this way.)

 gopA api nijabAlAJNjagR^ihurmUrdhAnamAghrAya |
 itthamalaukikalAbhasteshhAM tatra xaNaM vavR^idhe ||

 (The elder cowherds, who were embarrassed by their inability
 to control the cows, nevertheless ran after the cows. But when
 those cowherds reached the place where they saw the cowherd
 boys, their own sons,) the cowherds too (were overcome with affection)
 seeing their own sons. They picked them up and kissed them on the
 forehead (as a sign of affection). (The cows and the cowherds) thus
 felt a moment of increasing transcendental attainment (of joy) at that

 gopA vatsAshchAnye pUrvaM kR^ishhNAtmakA hyabhavan.h |
 tenAtmanaH priyatvaM darshitameteshhu kR^ishhNena  ||

 The cowherd boys and calves, although different from kR^ishhNa
 before (He re-created them from His own being), were now
 essentially Krishna Himself. From this event, the Krishna showed
 how dear the Self is (by illustrating the affection shown ) for
 those cowherd boys and calves.

 preyaH putrAdvittAtpreyo .anyasmAchcha sarvasmAt.h |
 antarataraM yadAtmetyupanishhadaH satyatAbhihitA ||

 "The Self is dearer than the son or wealth, and more intimate than
  anything else." This is the truth declared by the upanishhad
 (BR^ihadAraNyaka upanishhad 1.4.8)

  Also, note the bR^ihadAraNyaka statement:

  na vA are sarvasya kAmAya sarvaM priyaM bhavati, Atmanastu kAmAya
  sarvaM priyaM bhavati ... 2.4.5

  O dear one! Everything that is dear is not dear for its own sake,
  but everything that is dear is dear for the sake of the Self.

 From the unusual affection of the cows towards their calves and the
 cowherds towards their sons, as described above, it is being shown
 that the objects of the affection in this case had to be the Self.
 In other words, the calves and cowherd boys that Krishna created were
 as dear as the Self to the cows and the cowherds respectively. But
 then the calves and cowherds had been created by Krishna from His own
 being. This means that Krishna is the Self.

 In fact, the BhAgavata continues to narrate that BalarAma witnessed
 this event and was wonderstruck by the affection being shown to the
 cowherds boys instead of Krishna. Later He saw that all the "cowherd
 boys" had indeed forms identical to VishhNu.


bhava shankara deshikame sharaNam

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