All glories to Sri Guru and Sri Gauranga

Sri Guru-Purnima
Srila Vyasadev's Appearance

Related references from books by
His Divine Grace Srila Bhakti Raksak Sridhar Dev-Goswami Maharaj

From Sermons of the Guardian of Devotion Vol.IV, Chapter One: The Four Sittings of Srimad Bhagavatam

Question: In the beginning of Srimad Bhagavatam events are described of Suta Goswami speaking at Naimisaranya and this is after Vyasadev had spoken Bhagavatam to Sukadev. So how is it that Vyasadev was aware of the events at Naimisaranya?

Srila Sridhar Maharaj: So many sittings of Bhagavatam took place. First Narad came and gave instruction by way of a ten sloka outline. He told Vyasadev; "Meditate on it and give it out to the public. Elucidate these principles. Elucidate, otherwise what you have given so far will be all fruitless." So Vyas took only those ten slokas, those ten verses. He meditated and wrote the principle Bhagavatam in a short way. He gave, "That is revered brahma, the highest quarter, the Krsna conception of Godhead, and that lila is very sweet. That is nothing of this side in maya, but that plane is full of transcendental, sweet Pastimes." Vyasadev managed to call his son, Sukadev, and in Badarikasram he taught him: "Although my inclination was towards this non-differentiated brahman conception, my father managed to teach me this lila of Bhagavan Krishna. Today I shall talk about that to you in this great assembly."

So Sukadev received Srimad Bhagavatam from Vyasadev. Previously Narad gave it to Vyasadev, and Vyas composed it in elaboration and taught it to Sukadev: this was the second recitation. The third was when Sukadev delivered lectures with his remarks to the great assembly of scholars in Sukartala.

When Sukadev gave lecture, there was one Suta Goswami who was a very sharp hearing man, srutidhara. Srutidhara is one who having only once heard something keeps it in his memory, and Suta, having those qualities, was present in that meeting. The fourth sitting was in Naimisaranya where the rishis, apprehending the black march of kaliyuga, commenced and engaged themselves in a one thousand year campaign, yajna. Finding Suta Goswami they told, "We have go much leisure in the evening to hear about the Absolute and we heard that you, Suta, were present in that mysterious and famous assembly where Sukadev gave his lecture about Bhagavatam and you memorised it. We request that you deliver by way of lecture to us that Bhagavatam." Suta Goswami accepted their proposal and that was the last sitting in the form of regular evening lectures. Sixty thousand or so rishis, the scholars and performers of sacrifices, assembled to hear from him. It was after this sitting that Vyasadev took the whole thing and compiled it in book form and let it loose on the public.

From Sri Guru and His Grace, Chapter: Separation from Sri Guru.

Vyasadev may, or may not, know

Devotee: Although the disciple should regard the guru as absolute and of the highest level of spiritual attainment, how should the guru view his own position?
Srila Sridhar Maharaj: Sridhar Swami wrote a commentary on the Srimad-Bhagavatam. It was a little different from the previous commentaries, so the scholars, especially the Sankarites, refused to accept that commentary as universal. They put it to the test. They left the commentary in the temple of Visvanath, Lord Siva, and agreed that if he accepted the commentary, they would all accept. Then, from the Siva temple, this verse was revealed:

     aham vedmi suko vetti
     vyaso vetti na vetti va

        (Chaitanya-charitamrita, Madhya 24.313)

"The real purpose of the Srimad-Bhagavatam is very difficult to conceive," Lord Siva says. "I know the true purpose of Bhagavatam; Sukadev, the son and disciple of Vyasadev, knows it thoroughly, and the author of the Bhagavatam, Srila Vyasadev, may or may not know the meaning.

When teaching Sanatan Goswami, Mahaprabhu said, "Sanatan, Krishna is going to give His kindness to you through Me. I am talking to you like a madman. I feel many things are passing through Me to you. But I do not know that I Myself have that thing." It is possible. It is wonderful, but still we find it there. It is not unreasonable, although it is not understandable.

You see, when the Second World War broke out, in Dalhousie Square in Calcutta, there was a popular government poster. A military uniform was painted on the wall. Beneath it was a saying, "Just wear this uniform, and the uniform will show you what you must do." So, when a sincere man has taken a particular charge, he will somehow find out what are the duties of his post. He is sincere. And God will help. God helps those who help themselves. You have taken the charge, and that charge has come only as a chance, but there is some underground link. Then if you try to go on, help will come to you. He's not a cheat. You have sincerely taken this responsibility, as given to you by your master, and the master is not a cheat. He will come to help you with all his might, saying, "Do this. I'm helping; I am at your back." When we are all sincere, things will happen like this.

From Sermons of The Guardian of Devotion Vol.I, Chapter Ten: Beyond Doubt.

Before the Srimad-Bhagavatam appeared in the world, Devarsi Narad came and gave a regular stricture to Srila Vyasadev: "What have you done for so long? This is nothing! Rather, you did some downright wrong."

     jugupsitam dharma-krte 'nusasatah
     svabhava-raktasya mahan vyatikramah
     yad vakyato dharma idtarah sthito
     na manyate tasya nivaranam janah

        (Bhagavatam, 1.5.15)

"You have committed a great wrong. In your injunctions of religious duty for the masses, you have sanctioned condemnable worldly works for fulfilment of mundane desires. The masses are already by nature attached to condemnable worldly works for fulfilment of mundane desires. It is a great wrong because the worldly masses will conclude that your messages alone are the central religious duty. Even if they are taught by other knowers of the truth to refrain from those worldly works, they will not accept those teachings, or, they will not be able to understand them for themselves."

"The people generally have natural affinity for these things - dharma, artha, kama, and then moksa (religion, wealth, sense-pleasure, and liberation). You have recommended these four things in a regular and polished way, but this is already their natural demand. When one is over-fed, he wants fasting as a reaction. So, moksa is only a reaction to exploitation. This is already a fact, and you have recommended the same thing. What new thing have you given them? You have done wrong! Why? Because when a person of your status has recommended moksa, it will be difficult to give anything further. No one will be prepared to oppose your opinion, your standard. All will say that Vyasadev is the highest authority, and that they don't care for the advice of anyone else. The highest authority is Vyasadev. So it will be very difficult to get the people to accept through other sources anything beyond what you have given. So, you have done wrong! It may be considered your misdeed. Now, the only relief can be that you yourself will give the fifth end (beyond the aforementioned four common pursuits). You, personally, will have to take this work: 'So far what I have given is very limited, but now I shall give you something far superior.' You alone will have to take up this task, and only then you will have undergone the proper penance necessary for your chastisement. Mahan vyatikramah - it is a great wrong, because jugupsitam - what is very condemnable; dharma-krte - is given under the stamp of religion; but the goods under the stamp are ultimately nonreligious. What good is that? Only 'to do wrong and not to do wrong.' But to do good - is it not included there? Of bad and non-bad, non-bad does not mean positive good. So, you will have to take this duty with earnestness and clarify the position for the people: 'So far, what I have given you is more or less of a negative character. Now I have come to give you something positive.' In this way, you must create the atmosphere to give them something substantial.

"Dharma-projjhita-kaitavo 'tra paramo nirmat-saranam satam (the religion of the Srimad-Bhagavatam is free from the deceptions of the four ends of humanity, and it is the religion of the true saints). Nirmatsara means 'an impartial mentality,' and matsara refers to the jealous. 'So far, I have given advices to that particular section which is not free from egoistic thinking. I have dealt with them. But now I shall deal with the normal-thinking - the good-hearted people. I shall now advise them.' Because it will be difficult to dissuade the people from the path taught by you, I have therefore come to you. Only through you can the higher, developed conception be given to them. This is the only way."

Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math, Nabadwip
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