Sri Ramakrishna attends a Performance of Chaitanya at Calcutta with Devotees in Dakshineswar
Conversation between Rakhal, Narayan (Naran), Nityagopal and the Younger Gopal
It is Sunday, 21 September, 1884, (the sixth day of Aswin, 1291 B.Y.). A number of devotees have gathered in Sri Ramakrishna’s room – Ram, Mahendra Mukherji, Chunilal, M. and many others are there.
Chunilal has just returned from Vrindavan. He and Rakhal went there with Balaram. Rakhal and Balaram have not yet returned. Nityagopal is also in Vrindavan. Thakur talks of Vrindavan with Chunilal.
Sri Ramakrishna — How is Rakhal doing?
Chunilal — Sir, he is all right now.
Sri Ramakrishna — Isn’t Nityagopal coming back?
Chunilal — He is still there. I saw him there before I left.
Sri Ramakrishna — Who is accompanying your wife and the others?
Chunilal — Balaram Babu said that a good and suitable person would be sent to accompany them. He didn’t give the name.
Thakur now talks to Mahendra Mukherji about Narayan. Narayan goes to school and is 16 or 17 years old. He visits Thakur off and on. Thakur is very fond of him.
Sri Ramakrishna — He is very guileless, isn’t he?
As he says ‘guileless’, Sri Ramakrishna is filled with joy.
Mahendra — Yes sir, very guileless.
Sri Ramakrishna — His mother came the other day. I was frightened to find her so egotistical. She found out that you and Captain visit here. She must have definitely thought that he and Narayan were not the only ones who come to the temple. (All laugh.) There was some sugar candy in the room. Seeing it she said, ‘Nice sugar candy that is!’ She must have concluded from this that there is no dearth of food here.
“Then perhaps I said to Baburam in her presence, ‘Please keep some sandesh for Narayan and yourself.’ Ganu’s mother and some other women said, ‘Oh God, how he bothers his mother to pay the ferry charges to come here!’ His mother said to me, ‘Please ask Narayan to marry.’ I replied, ‘It depends on his destiny. Why should I interfere in such matters?’ (All laugh.)
“He doesn’t work hard in his studies, so she said, ‘Please ask him to study hard.’ I said to Narayan, ‘You must study hard.’ Then she said again, ‘Please tell him more emphatically.’ (All laugh.)
(To Chunilal) “Well, why doesn’t Gopal come?”
Chunilal — He has blood diarrhea.
Sri Ramakrishna — Does he take any medicine?
A courtesan acting in theatre – his past story – Thakur sees a balloon going up and is inspired
Today Thakur is to visit the Star Theatre in Calcutta and witness the Chaitanya Lila (play of Chaitanya). He will go with Mahendra Mukherji in his carriage to see the play. They discuss, where they should sit to get a good view. Somebody suggests that a one Rupee seat gives a good view. Ram says, “Why? We will take a box.”
Thakur laughs. Somebody says, “Courtesans act in these plays. They play the role of Chaitanya Deva, Nitai and others.”
Sri Ramakrishna (to the devotees) — I shall look upon them all as the All-Blissful Mother.
“Let them act as Chaitanya Deva. Seeing an imitation custard apple made of sola (a dry plant) one has the feeling of a real custard apple.
“A devotee walking on the road saw a number of babul (acacia) trees. The devotee was instantly absorbed in bhava (divine fervour). He remembered that the beautiful handle of the spade in the garden of Shyamasundar [Krishna] is made of the same wood. It at once brought the thought of Shyamasundar to his mind! When they took me to the Fort Maidan to see the balloon, I saw a European boy standing against a tree with his body bent at three places. Immediately, I was inspired with Krishna and went into samadhi!
“Chaitanya Deva was passing by the Meda village. He was told that they make khol (drum, used in kirtan) with clay from this village. At once he went into ecstasy.
“Seeing a cloud or the neck of a peacock, Radha could not control herself. She would be overcome with the presence of Sri Krishna and lose all outward consciousness.”
Thakur is now silent for awhile. After some time, he resumes the conversation: “Radha’s mahabhava – the prema (intense love) of the gopis was desireless. A genuine devotee has no desire. He merely prays for pure love for God. He doesn’t ask for occult powers, or any other power.”
Instructions by the Naked One – the eight occult powers are an obstacle in attaining the Lord
Sri Ramakrishna — Occult powers bring great troubles. The Naked One (Tota Puri) counseled me, saying, ‘A man who had occult powers was sitting on the seashore. The sea became stormy. Afraid that the storm would harm him, the man said, ‘Let the storm halt at once.’ His words could not remain unfulfilled. A ship with a mast was passing. When the storm died down so abruptly, the ship sank. All the passengers occupying the ship went down with it. Thus he contracted the sin of drowning so many people! The sin resulted not only in losing his occult powers, but also sent him to hell.’
“A sadhu possessed many occult powers. This also made him very proud. But this man was basically a good fellow and had a lot of tapasya (penance) to his credit. Bhagavan one day came to him disguised as a sadhu and said, ‘Maharaj, I hear that you have acquired many occult powers.’ The sadhu asked him very cordially to sit down. Just then an elephant was passing that way. The second sadhu said, ‘Well Maharaj, can you kill this elephant by a mere wish?’ The first sadhu said, ‘Yes, it is possible.’ Saying so, he took a little dust, muttered a few words and threw it on the body of the elephant. Lo! It died, writhing in pain. The visitor sadhu thereupon said, ‘You indeed have great powers! You have killed the elephant.’ The first sadhu began to laugh. The other sadhu then said, ‘Well, can you bring the elephant back to life?’ The other sadhu said, ‘That, too, is possible.’ Saying so, he muttered a few words and threw some dust on the elephant. It staggered up. The other sadhu then said, ‘O, how powerful you are! But I ask you this: What have you gained by killing the elephant and then bringing it back to life? What spiritual progress were you able to achieve by it? Has it helped you to realize Bhagavan?’ Saying so, that sadhu disappeared.
“Religion is a very delicate matter. Even the smallest trace of desire can stop you from attaining Bhagavan. The thread does not pass through the eye of a needle if its end has any fibers sticking out.
“Krishna said to Arjuna: Brother, if you wish to attain Me, even one of the eight occult powers will obstruct your reaching Me.
“The fact is that one becomes proud if one possesses occult powers. And this makes one forget the Lord.
“A cross-eyed gentleman came to see me. He said, ‘It is good that you are a paramahamsa. Please perform sawastyayana (a religious practice for the attainment of worldly desire) for me.’ What low intelligence! A paramahamsa should perform a sawastyayana! It is an occult power if one cures a person by performing sawastyayana. Pride stops you from attaining the Lord. Do you know what it is to be proud? Say, there is a high mound. You will see that it cannot hold rainwater; the rainwater just runs off. On the other hand, low land holds water. It helps plants to germinate and grow into trees. The trees later bear fruits.”
Love all – love dispels egoism and leads to God-realization
“So I say to Hazra, ‘Don’t think that you alone understand everything and that everyone else is a fool. You must love everyone. Nobody is a stranger. Hari dwells in all beings. Nothing exists without Him.’ Bhagavan said to Prahlada, ‘Ask for a boon.’ Prahlada replied, ‘I have had Your vision. I need nothing else.’ But Bhagavan would not listen. Then Prahlada said, ‘If You want to grant me a boon, then please don’t punish those who have troubled me.’
“It means that it was the Lord Hari Himself who had inflicted troubles on him. By harming those people, one would be harming the Lord Himself.”
Sri Ramakrishna surcharged with madness of jnana – his caste differentiation
His earlier story of 1857 – he meets a person with the madness of jnana just after the Kali Temple was founded – Haladhari
Sri Ramakrishna — Radha was seized with the madness of prema (ecstatic love) and also with the madness of bhakti – just like Hanuman. Seeing Sita entering the fire, he went toward Rama to hit him. And then there is the madness of jnana. Just after the Kali Temple was founded, I saw a jnani who looked crazed. People said that he belonged to the Brahmo Society of Rammohan Roy. A shoe on one of his feet was tattered. He was holding a bamboo branch in one hand and an earthen pot with a mango plant in the other. He had a dip in the Ganges. And then he entered the Kali Temple. Haladhari was sitting in the shrine. Later, the man began to sing a hymn in frenzy –
Kshon kshon Khattangadharini etc.
“He went near a dog, held its ear and shared its food. The dog did not react. I had also begun to experience a state of divine madness. I embraced Hriday and said to him, ‘Oh, Hriday! Am I also going to be put in such a state?’
“My state of madness! Narayan Shastri came and saw me strolling with a bamboo pole on my shoulder. He then told people that I was in divine intoxication. In such a state, one does not distinguish one’s own caste from others. The wife of a man of low caste would cook a vegetable and send it to me, and I would eat it.
“After the beggars and indigents had eaten and left the Kali Temple, I would take their leaf plates and touch them to my head and face. Haladhari said to me, ‘What are you doing? You are eating the leftover food of these indigents. How will you marry off your children?’ This made me very angry. Haladhari was my elder cousin’s brother. But what did it matter? I said to him, ‘Oh rascal, is it for this that you study the Gita and the Vedanta? Don’t you teach that only Brahman is the reality and the world illusory? You think that I am also going to have children! Fie on your study of the Gita!’
(To M.) “Look here, mere study does not help. A person maybe able to recite musical notation very nicely. But it is very difficult to play it.”
Thakur is further describing his state of intoxication of jnana.
His past story – in Navadvip with Mathur – Thakur falls at the feet of Chine Sankhari
“I was on a boat trip with Mathur Babu for several days. During that trip we visited Navadvip. I saw that the boatmen were cooking very good food in the boat and Mathur Babu knew that I would ask for it and eat it. So he said, ‘Father, do come here, come away.’
“But I can’t do it now. Now I am in a different state of mind. Now I only eat rice given by a pious man, a brahmin, or that offered to deities.
“What states have I passed through! In my village I would say to Chine Sankhari and the other companions of my age, ‘Brother, I fall at your feet. Just utter Haribol once.’ And I could fall at anybody’s feet. Chine said, ‘Oh brother, it is your first experience of anuraga (divine love). That is why you see everyone as equal.’ When a stormy wind blows, it raises a lot of dust and one sees no difference between the tamarind and the mango trees – one cannot distinguish the mango tree from the tamarind tree.”
What does Sri Ramakrishna believe in: in household life or complete renunciation? Keshab Sen’s doubt
A Devotee — How will a householder be able to go on with his duties of the world, if he experiences such madness of bhakti, or of prema (intense love), or of jnana?
Sri Ramakrishna (looking at the householder devotee) — There are two classes of yogis: vyakta (one who can be seen outwardly as a yogi) and the other, gupta (who hides his yoga). A householder is a gupta yogi, he doesn’t let others know of it. The householder renounces mentally, not externally.
Ram — This is like comforting a young boy. One can be a jnani in the household, but not a vijnani.
Sri Ramakrishna — If he wants finally to be a vijnani, he can become so. It is not right to renounce the household by forcing yourself.
Ram — Keshab Sen used to say, ‘Why do so many people go to him [meaning Sri Ramakrishna]? He will one day gently sting them. Then they will run away from him.’
Sri Ramakrishna — Why should I sting gently? I tell people, ‘Do ‘this’ and do ‘that’ too – live in the family and also call on the Lord.’ I don’t ask them for complete renunciation. (Laughing) Keshab Sen one day said in one of his lectures, ‘Oh, Lord, grant that we may dive into the river of bhakti and be carried to the ocean of Sachchidananda.’ All the ladies were behind a screen. I said to Keshab, ‘How could you all dive together? If you did that, what would happen to these ladies? First climb to dry land and then dive. And then again climb up to the dry land.’ Keshab and all other began to laugh. Hazra said to me, ‘You are very fond of rajasic people – they who have a lot of money, name, fame, and public respect.’ If that is so, why do I love Harish, Noto (Latu) and others? Why am I fond of Narendra? He doesn’t even have salt to eat with his roasted banana!
Sri Ramakrishna comes out of his room and goes toward the Jhautala talking with M. on the way. A devotee accompanies him with a washing pot and a hand towel. He is to go to Calcutta to witness the Chaitanya Lila – this topic is being discussed.
Sri Ramakrishna (to M., as they approach the Panchavati) — Ram does everything in a rajasic way. What is the need to spend so much for a seat?
What Thakur means is that there was no need to buy tickets for the box class.
Sri Ramakrishna at a devotee’s place in Hathibagan – Mahendra Mukherji’s service to him
Sri Ramakrishna is going from Dakshineswar to Calcutta by Mahendra Mukherji’s carriage. It is Sunday, 21 September, 1884, the sixth of Aswin, the second day of the bright fortnight of the month of Aswin. It is five o’clock. Mahendra Mukherji, M. and a couple of other persons are also in the carriage. The carriage hasn’t gone far when Thakur goes into the state of samadhi while meditating on the Lord.
The samadhi breaks after a long time. Thakur says, “And Hazra tries to teach me. Rascal!” After awhile, he says, “I shall take some water.” Thakur often says this after coming out of samadhi, to bring his mind down to the outer world.
Mahendra Mukherji (to M) — Shall I bring something to eat?
M. — He will not eat now.
Sri Ramakrishna (still in the ecstatic mood) — I shall eat. I shall ease myself.
Mahendra Mukherji has a flour mill in Hathibagan. He is taking Thakur to the mill. After resting for awhile, Thakur will go to the Star Theatre to see the Chaitanya Lila. Mahendra’s house is in Baghbazar, a little to the north of the Madan Mohan temple. His father is not acquainted with the Paramahamsa Deva, so Mahendra hasn’t taken Thakur to his house. Priyanath, his second brother, is a devotee.
A cotton carpet has been spread over a wooden cot in Mahendra’s mill. Thakur is sitting there talking on spiritual matters.
Sri Ramakrishna (to M. and Mahendra) — Hearing the narration of the Chaitanya Charitamrita, Hazra said, ‘It is all the sport of Shakti (Divine Power). There is no Vibhu in it.’ Can there be Shakti without Vibhu? He is trying to disprove the teachings of this place [of Sri Ramakrishna].
Brahman pervades all as Vibhu – a pure devotee doesn’t want the six supernatural powers
“I know that Brahman and Shakti are not separate from each other. They are like water and its wetness, or fire and its power to burn. God is present in the form of Vibhu, though there is greater manifestation of His Shakti in some, less in others. Besides, Hazra says, ‘When one attains Bhagavan, one acquires the six supernatural powers like Him. There will be six powers in one’s grasp, which may or may not be used.”
M. — One must have the six powers in one’s grasp! (All laugh.)
Sri Ramakrishna (laughing) — Yes, one must possess them. But what a low intellect! He who has never enjoyed powers is eager to possess them. The pure devotee never prays for these powers.
Betel leaves have not been served in the mill. Thakur says, “Please fetch some betel leaves.” He has to go to ease himself. Mahendra gets a pot of water and holds it in his hand. He will accompany Thakur out in the open space. Seeing Mani standing in front of him, Thakur says to Mahendra, “You don’t have to carry it. Give it to him.” Mani takes the washing pot and accompanies Thakur to the open space inside the mill. After the wash, Thakur is offered a smoke from the hookah. Thakur says to M., “Is it already sandhya (twilight hour)? If so, I shall not smoke from the hookah. When sandhya is approaching, one should remember Hari and forget everything else.” Saying this, Thakur sees whether he can count the hair on his hand. If he cannot, it is already dusk.
Chaitanya Lila in the theatre – Sri Ramakrishna in samadhi
M., Baburam, a devotee of the lineage of Nityananda, Mahendra Mukherji and Girish
Thakur’s cab arrives in front of the Star Theatre on Beadon Street at about 8.30 p.m. He is accompanied by M., Baburam, Mahendra Mukherji and one or two other devotees. They are purchasing the tickets. Girish Ghosh, the manager of the theatre, comes to Thakur’s carriage with some theatre employees. They welcome him and cordially take him upstairs. Girish knows the Paramahamsa Deva by name. He is extremely happy that Thakur has come to witness the performance of Chaitanya Lila. Thakur is given a seat in the southwestern box. M. is seated beside him. Baburam and one or two devotees are seated behind them.
The theatre hall is well lit. The seats on the ground floor are filled. Some boxes are also occupied. Each box has an attendant who fans the spectators from behind. Girish has appointed an attendant to fan Thakur.
Sri Ramakrishna is as happy as a child to see the theatre hall.
Sri Ramakrishna (to M., laughing) — Ah! It is very nice! It is good we came. I get inspired when there are many people around. I then clearly see that He has become all.
M. — Yes, Sir.
Sri Ramakrishna — What will they charge us?
M. — They will not charge us anything. They are glad that you came.
Sri Ramakrishna — It’s all the Mother’s greatness!
The curtain rises. All the spectators turn their eyes toward the stage. The first scene shows a meeting of sin and the six enemies. It is followed by a dialogue between discrimination, dispassion and bhakti.
Bhakti says, “Gauranga has taken birth in Nadia. That is why the learned and the rishis and munis are coming in disguise to see him.”
Blessed is the earth that Lord Gauranga has appeared in Nadia.
Behold, the demi-gods are coming by a flying chariot to have a glimpse of Lord Hari.
And lo! All the rishis and munis filled with divine love are coming too.
The demi-gods and goddesses, the rishis and munis sing a hymn of praise to Gauranga, looking upon him as an incarnation of God. Seeing them, Thakur passes into an ecstatic mood. He says to M., “Ah! How wonderful it is.”
The demi-gods and goddesses, the rishis and the munis sing the hymn –
Men — Keshab, bestow your compassion on us, the lowly, you who roam the groves and glades (of Vrindavan).
Women — You, the beloved Madhava, the charming Mohan playing the flute.
Chorus — Haribol, Haribol, Haribol (chant the name of Hari), O my mind!
Men — The lad of Braja, the tamer of Kaliya, the serpent and the dispeller of fear and harm.
Women — You with slanting eyes and the peacock feather arching on your forehead, the heart-throb of Radha!
Men — It was you who lifted the Govardhan Mount. Wild flowers decorate your person. O Damodara, the destroyer of Kamsa’s pride.
Women — O Shyam, you sported with the milkmaids of Vrindavan.
Chorus — Haribol, Haribol, Haribol (chant the name of Hari), O my mind!
As the demi-goddesses sing, “You with slanting eyes and the peacock feather arching on your forehead, the heartthrob of Radha,” Sri Ramakrishna goes into deep samadhi. The concert goes on, but he is unaware of the external world.
Witnessing of Chaitanya Lila – Sri Ramakrishna becomes intoxicated with intense love of Gaur
Jagannath Misra (Nimai’s father) has received guests. The child Nimai is strolling and singing joyfully with the companions of his age –
Where is my Vrindavan and where is mother Yashoda? Where is my father, Nanda, and where, brother Balai?
Where are my twin cows, black and white and where is my bewitching flute? Where can I find Sridama, Sudama and the other cowherd boys?
Where is my Jamuna’s bank and where my banana grove? Where, my milkmaids and my Radha?
The guests offer food to Bhagavan with their eyes shut. Nimai comes running and eats the holy food. The guests recognize him as Bhagavan and sing the hymn of the ten avatars to please him. While taking leave of Misra and Sachi, they sing another hymn –
Victory to Nityananda and Gaur, victory to the redeemer,
The refuge of the helpless, the soul of the embodied soul and the dispeller of fear!
In every new age You sport in a new way. A new role with every new wave, You who bear the burden of the universe.
You take away the fire of the world with the rain of Your divine love, You the distributor of the joy of Your divine sport.
The hope of the lowly, the destroyer of all sins and the remover of all cause of fear.
As Thakur hears the hymn, he again passes into an ecstatic mood.
On the bank of the Ganges in Navadvip, after their dip in the Ganges, the brahmins and the men and women perform worship. Nimai snatches the food offering and eats it. A brahmin is very annoyed with him and shouts, “You mischievous boy! You are snatching the holy food of Vishnu’s puja. You will be totally ruined!” Nimai still grabs it and is about to run away. Most of the women are very fond of this boy. They cannot bear to see Nimai leaving. They call out, “Nimai, come back! Do come back!” But Nimai does not listen to them.
Somebody knows the great mantra that will force Nimai to return. He begins to chant, “Haribol, Haribol.” Immediately Nimai returns, repeating, “Haribol, Haribol.”
Mani is seated beside Thakur. He is exclaiming, “Ah.”
Thakur cannot contain himself any longer. He begins to shed tears of love looking at Mani as he utters, “Ah.”
Sri Ramakrishna (to Baburam and M.) — Look here, if I pass into an ecstatic mood or samadhi, you must not create a fuss about it. Worldly people will think that I am feigning it.
It is the sacred thread ceremony of Nimai. Nimai is in the robes of a sannyasin. He is surrounded by Sachi and the women of the area. Nimai sings a song to beg for alms –
O, give me alms my mother. I am a new yogi roaming about weeping.
O, the people of Braja, I love you. O, mother, that is why, I have come! See, I am fasting.
See mother! A yogi is repeating, ‘Radha, Radha,’ at your door. The time is up and he has to return. Mother, I live alone on the bank of Jamuna.
The water from my eyes meet the water of the Jamuna and flows slowly to mix with the waves in a gentle roar.
Everybody leaves except Nimai who stays alone. The gods in the guise of brahmin men and women are singing a hymn.
Men — The light of the moon shines in you. You have the form of vamana (a dwarf).
Women — You, the beloved of the milkmaids, the wanderer among the beautiful groves of Vrindavan.
Nimai — Victory to Radha, Sri Radha.
Men — The boys of Braja are with you, your beauty puts to shame the pride of Madan, the god of love.
Women — Your love has intoxicated the gopis of Braja. There are waves of ecstasy.
Men — You who delude the demons, you are the Lord Narayana, the dispeller of the fear of gods.
Women — You roam about in Braja and beg love from the gopis.
Nimai — Victory to Radha, Sri Radha.
Sri Ramakrishna enters samadhi hearing the song. The curtain drops. The concert orchestra is playing a single tune.
Worldly people want to hold onto both: the world and God – Gangadas and Srivas
Srivas and others are in conversation in front of Advaita’s home. Mukanda sings in a sweet voice –
O my mind, don’t go to sleep. You have remained oblivious, intoxicated with maya for so long.
Who are you? Why have you come? You have forgotten yourself.
Come out of this bad dream, open your eyes and see.
You are living with transitory things. Look for the eternal within yourself.
Come out of the darkness and see the bright light of the sun.
Mukanda has a very sweet voice. Sri Ramakrishna is praising him to Mani.
Nimai is at home. Srivas has come to see him. First he meets Sachi. Sachi weeps and says, “My son doesn’t show interest in domestic duties.”
I constantly tremble with fear ever since Viswarupa (her eldest son) left, lest Nimai should also embrace sannyasa.
Nimai arrives now. Sachi says to Srivas –
Alas, look at him. What crazy looks he has!
Tears from his eyes have drenched his chest.
Tell me, please tell me, how I can free him of this mood.
Nimai weeps, holding Srivas’s feet and says –
O Lord, where do I have bhakti for Krishna?
My wretched life is now of no avail!
Tell me, O Lord, where is Krishna? How can I attain Krishna?
Kindly give me the dust of your feet so that I maybe able to attain Banmali.
Sri Ramakrishna continues to look at M. and wants to talk, but cannot. His throat is choked with emotion, his cheeks drenched with tears. He stares at Nimai, holding the feet of Srivas. Nimai is saying, “O Lord, how do I have love for Krishna?”
Nimai is not able to give lessons to his students. Gangadas was his teacher. Gangadas has come to instruct Nimai. He says to Srivas, “Revered Srivas, we are brahmins too. We, too, worship Vishnu. You people have ruined the household life (of Nimai).”
Sri Ramakrishna (to M.) — It is a householder’s instruction, ‘Do this and also do that.’ When a householder teaches, he wants you to hold onto both the world and God.
M. — True, Sir.
Gangadas further instructs Nimai, “I say Nimai, you are well versed in scriptures. Discuss it with me. What is more important than the householder’s dharma? Please explain it to me. You are a householder, so why do you conduct yourself otherwise?”
Sri Ramakrishna (to M.) — See, he is saying this to uphold both sides [worldly and spiritual].
M. — Yes, Sir.
Nimai says: I am not willingly unmindful of the household life. On the contrary, I wish for both sides to be taken care of. But –
Lord, I do not know at all why all this is happening.
Alas! What I am doing is through the attraction of my heart!
I wish I could live in the family, but I cannot.
My soul is flying out and there is no way to bring it back.
It is ever longing to jump into the deep sea.
Sri Ramakrishna — Ah!
A descendant of Nityananda’s family in the theatre and Sri Ramakrishna’s inspiration – M., Baburam, the Goswami from Khardaha, of the lineage of Nityananda
Nityananda has arrived at Navadvip. He has been looking for Nimai, and Nimai for him. At that very moment, he meets Nimai. When they meet, Nimai says –
My life is blessed. My dream has come true. You had hidden yourself after appearing in a dream.
Sri Ramakrishna (to M., in a voice choked with emotion) — Nimai says, ‘I saw you in a dream.’
Srivas is seeing the six-armed divine form and he sings his praises. Sri Ramakrishna also sees the six-armed divine form absorbed in bhava. Gauranga is in ecstasy. He talks to Advaita, Srivas, Haridas and others in an ecstatic mood.
Recognizing the ecstatic mood of Gauranga, Nitai sings –
O the Beloved of my soul, where is Krishna in the grove?
Please bring me my Krishna, O my beloved friend! Whom does Radha know except Krishna?
Sri Ramakrishna passes into samadhi on hearing the song. He remains in this mood for a long time. The orchestra goes on. Thakur’s samadhi comes to an end. In the meantime, a gentleman from Nityananda Goswami’s lineage of Khardaha comes in and stands behind Thakur’s chair. He is thirty-four or thirty-five. Seeing him, Thakur is filled with joy. Holding his hand, he talks to him for a long time. He asks him a number of times to take a seat close to him, saying that he feels greatly inspired by his presence. He holds his hand and shows his love and regard by bringing the hand to touch his face.
As the Goswami leaves, Thakur says to M., “He is a great scholar. His father is a great devotee. When I go to Khardaha for the darshan of Shyamasundar, his father feeds me offered food worth more than a hundred rupees.”
“He has very good traits. Just nudging him a little easily arouses his consciousness. I get greatly inspired looking at him. Had he been here a little while longer, I would have stood up [in ecstasy].”
What Thakur means is that if he had been with the Goswami a little longer, he would have gone into an ecstatic mood.
The curtain rises. Nityananda is seated on the main road with his hand on his head to stop his bleeding. Madhai has thrown a brass pot at him and its edge has hurt him. But Nitai is absolutely indifferent to it – he is intoxicated with the love of Gauranga, filled as if up to the neck. Sri Ramakrishna is absorbed in an ecstatic mood. He watches Nitai embracing Jagai and Madhai. Says Nitai –
Come on, Jagai and Madhai, come dancing. Let us utter Haribol to our hearts’ content.
If you have struck me, you have done well. Sing ‘Hari, Hari’ and dance.
Repeat Haribol. The lovers will embrace you in love divine.
Raise, O raise, the name of Hari. Let the word resound all around.
You have not yet tasted prema. O brother, say Haribol and weep. Then you will see the moon in your heart.
O, brother! I will lovingly dole out His name. That is why Nitai is calling so lovingly.
Now Nimai is talking to Sachi about his sannyasa.
Sachi falls into a swoon. Seeing her faint, many in the audience sob with grief. Sri Ramakrishna, however, remains perfectly self-composed. Except that one can see a tear in the corner of his eye.
Sri Ramakrishna intoxicated with the love of Gaur
The performance ends. Sri Ramakrishna gets into a carriage. A devotee asks him, “How did you like it?” Thakur laughs and says, “The performance was truly the same as the reality.”
The carriage is proceeding toward Mahendra Mukherji’s mill. Suddenly Thakur passes into an ecstatic mood. After a long time, he murmurs lovingly –
“ ‘Oh, Krishna! Oh, Krishna! Jnana (knowledge) is Krishna! Prana (vital breath) is Krishna! The mind is Krishna! The Atman is Krishna! The body is Krishna!’ And he adds, ‘The beloved of my soul, oh Govinda! You are my life.’ ”
The carriage arrives at Mukherji’s mill. Mahendra treats Thakur to refreshments with the utmost hospitality and love. Mani is seated nearby. Thakur says lovingly to him, “Please take something.” Then he himself gives some prasad of sweetmeats to him.
Now Sri Ramakrishna is going to the Kali Temple in Dakshineswar. He is accompanied in the carriage by Mahendra Mukherji and two or three other devotees. Mahendra is to leave the carriage after some distance. Thakur is full of joy and begins to sing –
O Lord, Gaur and Nitai, both of you two brothers …
Mani sings with him.
Mahendra intends to go on pilgrimage. This is the topic of conversation with Thakur.
Sri Ramakrishna (to Mahendra, laughing) — The sprout of prema (divine love) will wither away before it starts to develop within you.
“But come back quickly. Oh, for so many days I had been thinking of visiting your house. It is good that I visited it once.”
Mahendra — Sir, my life is blessed.
Sri Ramakrishna — You are already blessed. And your father is also a nice man. I met him the other day. He has faith in Adhyatma (Ramayana).
Mahendra — Sir, grant that I may have bhakti by your grace.
Sri Ramakrishna — You are very large-hearted and guileless. One cannot attain Bhagavan without being guileless and generous. One must shun hypocrisy.
Mahendra takes his leave near Shyambazar. The carriage moves on.
Sri Ramakrishna (to M.) — What has Jadu Mallick done?
M. (to himself) — Thakur is so interested in the welfare of everyone! Has he incarnated in a human body to teach bhakti, like Chaitanya Deva?
 The premises of the Star Theatre is now the Kohinoor Theatre
 Divine Mother wearing a dress of a particular kind of grass
 People endowed with the quality of rajas
 All-pervading Consciousness
 The six passions: lust, anger, greed, attachment, pride and envy
 The ten avatars: The fish, the turtle, the sow, the Narasimha (half man and half lion), vamana (in the form of a dwarf), Parashurama, Rama, Krishna, Buddha and the Kalki avatar
 An appellation Sri Krishna; one wearing a garland of wild flowers
 To see and pay homage
 For the complete song, see Section XII, Chapter III of this volume