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CC Adi 7.157

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His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

TEXT 157

prabhu yabe yā’na viśveśvara-daraśane
lakṣa lakṣa loka āsi’ mile sei sthāne


prabhu—Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu; yabe—when; yā’na—goes; viśveśvara—the deity of Vārāṇasī; daraśane—to visit; lakṣa lakṣa—hundreds of thousands; loka—people; āsi’—come; mile—meet; sei—that; sthāne—on the place.


When the Lord went to visit the temple of Viśveśvara, hundreds of thousands of people assembled to see Him.


The important point in this verse is that Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu regularly visited the temple of Viśveśvara (Lord Śiva) at Vārāṇasī. Vaiṣṇavas generally do not visit a demigod’s temple, but here we see that Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu regularly visited the temple of Viśveśvara, who was the predominating deity of Vārāṇasī. Generally Māyāvādī sannyāsīs and worshipers of Lord Śiva live in Vārāṇasī, but how is it that Caitanya Mahāprabhu, who took the part of a Vaiṣṇava sannyāsī, also visited the Viśveśvara temple? The answer is that a Vaiṣṇava does not behave impudently toward the demigods. A Vaiṣṇava gives proper respect to all, although he never accepts a demigod to be as good as the Supreme Personality of Godhead.

In the Brahma-saṁhitā there are mantras offering obeisances to Lord Śiva, Lord Brahmā, the sun-god and Lord Gaṇeśa, as well as Lord Viṣṇu, all of whom are worshiped by the impersonalists as pañcopāsanā. In their temples impersonalists install deities of Lord Viṣṇu, Lord Śiva, the sun-god, goddess Durgā and sometimes Lord Brahmā also, and this system is continuing at present in India under the guise of the Hindu religion. Vaiṣṇavas can also worship all these demigods, but only on the principles of the Brahma-saṁhitā, which is recommended by Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. We may note in this connection the mantras for worshiping Lord Śiva, Lord Brahmā, goddess Durgā, the sun-god and Gaṇeśa, as described in the Brahma-saṁhitā.

sṛṣṭi-sthiti-pralaya-sādhana-śaktir ekā
chāyeva yasya bhuvanāni bibharti durgā
icchānurūpam api yasya ca ceṣṭate sā
govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi

“The external potency, māyā, who is of the nature of the shadow of the cit [spiritual] potency, is worshiped by all people as Durgā, the creating, preserving and destroying agency of this mundane world. I adore the primeval Lord, Govinda, in accordance with whose will Durgā conducts herself.” (BS 5.44)

kṣīraṁ yathā dadhi vikāra-viśeṣa-yogāt
sañjāyate na hi tataḥ pṛthag asti hetoḥ
yaḥ śambhutām api tathā samupaiti kāryād
govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi

“Milk is transformed into curd by the actions of acids, yet the effect, curd, is neither the same as nor different from its cause, viz., milk. I adore the primeval Lord, Govinda, of whom the state of Śambhu is a similar transformation for the performance of the work of destruction.” (BS 5.45)

bhāsvān yathāśma-śakaleṣu nijeṣu tejaḥ
svīyaṁ kiyat prakaṭayaty api tadvad atra
brahmā ya eṣa jagad-aṇḍa-vidhāna-kartā
govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi

“I adore the primeval Lord, Govinda, from whom the separated subjective portion Brahmā receives his power for the regulation of the mundane world, just as the sun manifests a portion of his own light in all the effulgent gems that bear such names as sūrya-kānta.” (BS 5.49)

yat-pāda-pallava-yugaṁ vinidhāya kumbha-
dvandve praṇāma-samaye sa gaṇādhirājaḥ
vighnān vihantum alam asya jagat-trayasya
govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi

“I worship the primeval Lord, Govinda. Gaṇeśa always holds His lotus feet upon the pair of tumuli protruding from his elephant head in order to obtain power for his function of destroying all obstacles on the path of progress in the three worlds.” (BS 5.50)

yac cakṣur eṣa savitā sakala-grahāṇāṁ
rājā samasta-sura-mūrtir aśeṣa-tejāḥ
yasyājñayā bhramati sambhṛta-kāla-cakro
govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi

“The sun, full of infinite effulgence, who is the king of all the planets and the image of the good soul, is like the eye of this world. I adore the primeval Lord, Govinda, in pursuance of whose order the sun performs his journey, mounting the wheel of time.” (BS 5.52)

All the demigods are servants of Kṛṣṇa; they are not equal with Kṛṣṇa. Therefore even if one goes to a temple of the pañcopāsanā, as mentioned above, one should not accept the deities as they are accepted by the impersonalists. All of them are to be accepted as personal demigods, but they all serve the order of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Śaṅkarācārya, for example, is understood to be an incarnation of Lord Śiva, as described in the Padma Purāṇa. He propagated the Māyāvāda philosophy under the order of the Supreme Lord. We have already discussed this point in text 114 of this chapter: tāṅra doṣa nāhi, teṅho ājñā-kārī dāsa. “Śaṅkarācārya is not at fault, for he has thus covered the real purport of the Vedas under the order of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.” Although Lord Śiva, in the form of a brāhmaṇa (Śaṅkarācārya), preached the false philosophy of Māyāvāda, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu nevertheless said that since he did it on the order of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, there was no fault on his part (tāṅra doṣa nāhi).

We must offer proper respects to all the demigods. If one can offer respects even to an ant, why not to the demigods? One must always know, however, that no demigod is equal to or above the Supreme Lord. Ekale īśvara kṛṣṇa, āra saba bhṛtya: (CC Adi 5.142) “Only Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and all others, including the demigods such as Lord Śiva, Lord Brahmā, goddess Durgā and Ganeśa, are His servants.” Everyone serves the purpose of the Supreme Godhead, and what to speak of such small and insignificant living entities as ourselves? We are surely eternal servants of the Lord. The Māyāvāda philosophy maintains that the demigods, the living entities and the Supreme Personality of Godhead are all equal. It is therefore a most foolish misrepresentation of Vedic knowledge.