Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha

Question of Kripadham: What is the deity that Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu especially worships?

Tirtha Maharaj: Jagannath. Daru Narayan, the wooden Narayan.

Kripadham: Why exactly Jagannath?

Tirtha Maharaj: Because He was living in Puru! Jagannath Puri.

Kripadham: And during the time when he was in Navadvip?

Tirtha Maharaj: Well, in Navadvip… Ah, that was more special. Already in Navadvip He started to fall in ecstasy. But those ecstasies were very special. These Jagannath Puri ecstasies are more like rasic ecstasies. And the Navadvip ecstasies were more like aishvaric. Aishvarya means the majestic mood. So sometimes He manifested different aspects, different avatars of Vishnu. Sometimes Narasingha, sometimes others – in that mood He appeared, sat on a throne and accepted the worship of devotees. So in these moments He was not worshipping, but He was worshipped by others.

But generally speaking we can say that after meeting His master in Gayaa big change started to manifest in His life. Before He was a respected scientist so to say of logic and Sanskrit language and when returning from Gaya He invited all the students of His school and said: “Finished! Go to others to study. My heart is stolen by this dark Lord. I cannot teach you Sanskrit. I can only teach about Him.” That was a big transformation in Him. And that transformation manifested first of all in personal meeting with Ishvara Puri and then by chanting the mahamantra these feelings evolved more and more.

And then arriving to Jagannath Puri He was very satisfied to meet His beloved Lord there. Because Mahaprabhu was especially focusing on the Vrindavana rasa. Why? Because He was a combined incarnation of Radha andKrishna. What else He could be focused on? This is the only thing.

So we can say that the main object of worship and the main mood of worship for Him was this Jagannath mood. But not in the mood of the Lord of the Universe, but in the mood of the hiding or hiddenKrishna.

Kripadham: So, He is in the mood of Vrindavana, staying in Jagannath Puri; and what happens when He goes to Vrindavana? He finds Radha-kunda and other places… What is the relation between Jagannath Puri and Vrindavana?

Tirtha Maharaj: We shall go on reading this chapter and so many things will be revealed. Because another sign of divine ecstasy – besides this very unusual behavior of sometimes violent, other times embracing, sometimes forgetting, sometimes dancing, sometimes laughing – is the inability to identify places. Mahaprabhu saw the ocean and said: “Ah, Radha-kunda!” When He saw a sand dune He said: “Govardhan!” When He heard one lady walking on the street and singing, He said: “Ah, the gopis are singing!” So in His mind and His heart Jagannath Puri was always a reflection of Vrindavana. 

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