Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha


(continues from the previous issue)

 If we discuss a little bit more this very nice topic of chanting the names of the Lord, there is another story to mention. Here the kirtan of the devotees made Mahaprabhu happy. From a sad state of mind, He came back to a normal state of mind, so to say. This other occasion was when He completely fainted. Actually He mistook the ocean for the Yamuna again and ran into the water. And as I have taken my lessons in oceanography recently, I understood that seas and oceans are dangerous. Certain layers and currents and this and that are there in the water. It happened in the Bengal Bay also. When Mahaprabhu ran into the sea, into the ocean, He was just wiped away by the waves. And quite far from Jagannath Puri there is a very famous temple of the sun god, Surya, this is called Kunaraka. Otherwise this is called the Black Pagoda. The Muslims think that it has got some magnetic power. They think due to some heavy metals there, but they are mistaken – this is the power of the sun god, Surya Narayan’s attractive power. Actually Mahaprabhu was wiped there, to such a distance from Puri! And devotees started to miss Him: “Our Lord did not return.” Whole evening they were searching for Him, when all of a sudden they saw a madman on the street. By profession he was a fisherman. And in the strange behaviour of this fisherman, the devotees had tasted something from their Lord. So they immediately inquired from this person: “What’s happening to you? Why are you running in such a lunatic mood?” And then the fisherman started to explain: “Ah, today, during the night, I had a good catch. A big fish came into my nets, but when I touched I got electric shock! Something strange happened to me and since that time I have lost my consciousness, I am running up and down! I don’t know what’s going on! Sometimes I feel like dancing and jumping – very unusual and very uneasy! Help me, cure me of my disease!” But then the devotees paid absolutely no attention to him, they understood: “Here is our Lord!” They inquired from the fisherman: “Where is this big fish?” He said: “Fish! I thought this is a fish, but it is too big and sometimes some parts are elongated, other times it is changing the form and colour also… So maybe it is not a fish, maybe it is some spirit!” Yes, this is the spirit of ecstasy! So devotees were just running to catch the fish, the big fish. And finally they saw their Lord, just rescued from the water, but you know, He was in a swoon. So what to do, what to do?! They tried to collect all their medical knowledge – how to cure a fainted person. But in unison they agreed there is only one remedy. So they started: Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare – and they repeated it for some time. And then soon the “big fish” started to gain His consciousness. Great devotees like Svarupa Damodara, Mukunda, Ramananda Raya and others – they were chanting. They are considered highly qualified vaishnavas. And when the “big fish” regained His consciousness, He said: “What is this noise?! What is this noise, disturbing My meditation?!”

So, please, brothers and sisters, try to qualify your chanting, so that this is not an annoying noise for the Lord, disturbing His meditation, but it should be some flower petals, offered nicely, humbly with full heart and dedication at His lotus feet.

From this second event you can see that from a deep ecstatic mood, Mahaprabhu came back in so to say normal condition. When He is very sad and deeply engrossed by the pain of separation, by the help of kirtan He comes back to a normal condition. When He is in a high ecstasy, by the chanting of the name He again comes back to a normal state of mind. This shows that whenever you are in trouble or whenever you are overwhelmed by some kind of happiness, just chant the holy names. You will regain your normal consciousness.

These are just very few things of the magical effects of the holy name.

Question of Kripadham: As you mentioned in the story that the chanting of Ramananda Raya and Svarupa Damodara was appearing like a noise to Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, how can we reach such a level, so that our chanting is not noisy?

Tirtha Maharaj: Whisper silently.

Well, this is their business. Our business is to do what our spiritual master has given us. We cannot imitate the great ones – neither their noise, not their chanting. But if the noise of my disciples would bring back God from His deepest ecstasy to a normal state of mind, I would be very satisfied. It is quite a noise! Because that means it is powerful. The rockets are burning! Well, maybe the targeting is not perfect yet, but at least the rockets are burning.

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