ecstatic love immediately overwhelmed everyone
LORD CAITANYA´S PARTY
all good fortune immediately awakens
Lord Chaitanya is Lord Krishna Himself teaching all living entities the easy method of approaching Krishna in this age. He is like a teacher who, seeing a student doing poorly, takes up a pencil and writes, saying, “Do it like this: A, B, C.” So, although Lord Chaitanya appears in the guise of a devotee teaching by His personal example, we should not foolishly think He is an ordinary human being. We should always remember that Lord Chaitanya is Krishna Himself, appearing in the dress of a devotee Who came to this world to teach the easy process of self-realization, purity, and spiritual happiness by introducing the congregational chanting of the maha mantra:
Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama Hare Hare
This chanting in the form of the Hare Krishna maha-mantra is the sublime and easy process in this age for the deliverance of all souls from illusion, depravity and irreligion. Lord Chaitanya made no conditions to adopt this chanting process, He simply requested that one adopt it and reap the benefit. By this chanting process the heart will, in due course of time, radiate pure of love of God. He taught the principal by practicing it Himself as a regular daily pastime.
When the eastern horizon of Lord Chaitanya’s hometown of Mayapur became tinged with the redness that heralds the rising of the sun, He immediately awakened. Taking His devotees with Him, singing and dancing, He joyfully wandered throughout the towns and villages of Nadia district. The mridanga drums resounded, and the large metal hand cymbals chimed in time. Lord Gauranga’s golden form slightly trembled in ecstatic love of Godhead as He sang, and His footbells jingled as He danced. Lord Caitanya called out to the townsfolk as they passed through the streets, urging them to participate, “You spend your nights uselessly sleeping and your days decorating your bodies! Now just fill your mouths with the holy names, ‘Mukunda!’ ‘Madhava!’ ‘Krishna!’ and ‘Hari!’ chanting without offense! He reminded the townsfolk, “With every rising and setting of the sun, a day passes and is lost. Why then do you remain idle and not serve the Lord of the heart? You should understand this essential fact: life is temporary and filled with various kinds of miseries. Therefore, carefully take shelter of the holy name and remain always engaged in His service as your eternal occupation. Desiring to bless all living entities, this sweet name of Krishna has descended to this material universe and shines like the sun in the sky of the heart, destroying the darkness of ignorance.
Thus, the kirtan established by Lord Chaitanya was not solely a musical performance as one would expect to hear elsewhere, rather He taught the principals of spirituality simultaneously. The chanting of the Lord’s name was sung to cleanse the heart, bring peace to the world, and awaken the spiritual sentiments of the participant.
The same ecstatic outpouring of devotional ecstasy that was displayed in Kuliya, West Bengal was later seen in Lord Chaitanya’s kirtan performances in Jagannatha Puri, an idyllic seacoast town in the state of Orissa, and site of the famous Ratha Yatra cart festival that is attended by no less than one million people. The following is a beautiful description of Lord Chaitanya’s Harinam sankirtana, performed with thousands of devotees on the streets of Jagannatha Puri:
Four kirtan parties were distributed in four directions to perform sankirtana, and in the middle of them the Lord Himself, known as the son of Mother Sachi, began to dance. In the four groups there were eight mridanga drums and thirty-two brass cymbals. In harmonious uproar they began to vibrate the transcendental sound of the Lord’s name, and everyone exclaimed, “Very good! Very good!” When the tumultuous vibration of sankirtana resounded, all good fortune immediately awakened, and that holy sound penetrated the entire universe throughout the fourteen planetary systems. When the congregational chanting began, ecstatic love immediately overwhelmed everyone, and all the residents of Jagannatha Puri came running to participate. Everyone was astonished to see such an unprecedented performance of sankirtana, and they all agreed that never before had kirtana been so blissfully performed and ecstatic love of God so jubilantly exhibited as in the kirtan of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. This is the process to awaken our dormant love of God.
God is the father of all, and loving him enables us to see all living beings as our family members. The vision that every individual belonging to a universal spiritual family fosters peace and harmony in the world, but that vision begins with our individual effort to become free from hatred, greed, anger, envy, lust, and hypocrisy. The benefits reaped by the chanter of the holy name, either in kirtan, or by chanting in the sanctity of one’s own home will radiate outwards from the individual to the neighbourhood, and from the neighbourhood to the nation, and eventually from the nation to the world! Every mantra counts! Come chant with us and help shape a better world. Hare Krishna!