Canto 11: General HistoryChapter 5: Narada Concludes His Teachings to Vasudeva

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Srimad Bhagavatam 11.5.32

krishna-varnam tvishakrishnam


yajnaih sankirtana-prayair

yajanti hi su-medhasah


krishna-varnam -- repeating the syllables krish-na; tvisha -- with a luster; akrishnam -- not black (golden); sa-anga -- along with associates; upa-anga -- servitors; astra -- weapons; parshadam -- confidential companions; yajnaih -- by sacrifice; sankirtana-prayaih -- consisting chiefly of congregational chanting; yajanti -- they worship; hi -- certainly; su-medhasah -- intelligent persons.


In the age of Kali, intelligent persons perform congregational chanting to worship the incarnation of Godhead who constantly sings the names of Krishna. Although His complexion is not blackish, He is Krishna Himself. He is accompanied by His associates, servants, weapons and confidential companions.


This same verse is quoted by Krishnadasa Kaviraja in the Caitanya-caritamrita, Adi-lila, Chapter Three, verse 52. His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada has given the following commentary on this verse. "This text is from Srimad-Bhagavatam (11.5.32). Srila Jiva Gosvami has explained this verse in his commentary on the Bhagavatam known as the Krama-sandarbha, wherein he says that Lord Krishna also appears with a golden complexion. That golden Lord Krishna is Lord Caitanya, who is worshiped by intelligent men in this age. That is confirmed in Srimad-Bhagavatam by Garga Muni, who said that although the child Krishna was blackish, He also appears in three other colors -- red, white and yellow. He exhibited His white and red complexions in the Satya and Treta ages respectively. He did not exhibit the remaining color, yellow-gold, until He appeared as Lord Caitanya, who is known as Gaurahari.

"Srila Jiva Gosvami explains that krishna-varnam means Sri Krishna Caitanya. Krishna-varnam and Krishna Caitanya are equivalent. The name Krishna appears with both Lord Krishna and Lord Caitanya Krishna. Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, but He always engages in describing Krishna and thus enjoying transcendental bliss by chanting and remembering His name and form. Lord Krishna Himself appears as Lord Caitanya to preach the highest gospel. Varnayati means 'utters' or 'describes.' Lord Caitanya always chants the holy name of Krishna and describes it also, and because He is Krishna Himself, whoever meets Him will automatically chant the holy name of Krishna and later describe it to others. He injects one with transcendental Krishna consciousness, which merges the chanter in transcendental bliss. In all respects, therefore, He appears before everyone as Krishna, either by personality or by sound. Simply by seeing Lord Caitanya one at once remembers Lord Krishna. One may therefore accept Him as vishnu-tattva. In other words, Lord Caitanya is Lord Krishna Himself.

"Sangopangastra-parshadam further indicates that Lord Caitanya is Lord Krishna. His body is always decorated with ornaments of sandalwood and with sandalwood paste. By His superexcellent beauty He subdues all the people of the age. In other descents the Lord sometimes used weapons to defeat the demoniac, but in this age the Lord subdues them with His all-attractive figure as Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Srila Jiva Gosvami explains that His beauty is His astra, or weapon, to subdue the demons. Because He is all-attractive, it is to be understood that all the demigods lived with Him as His companions. His acts were uncommon and His associates wonderful. When He propagated the sankirtana movement, He attracted many great scholars and acaryas, especially in Bengal and Orissa. Lord Caitanya is always accompanied by His best associates like Lord Nityananda, Advaita, Gadadhara and Srivasa.

"Srila Jiva Gosvami cites a verse from the Vedic literature that says that there is no necessity of performing sacrificial demonstrations or ceremonial functions. He comments that instead of engaging in such external, pompous exhibitions, all people, regardless of caste, color or creed, can assemble together and chant Hare Krishna to worship Lord Caitanya. Krishna-varnam tvishakrishnam [SB 11.5.32] indicates that prominence should be given to the name Krishna. Lord Caitanya taught Krishna consciousness and chanted the name of Krishna. Therefore, to worship Lord Caitanya, everyone should together chant the maha-mantra -- Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. To propagate worship in churches, temples or mosques is not possible because people have lost interest in that. But anywhere and everywhere, people can chant Hare Krishna. Thus worshiping Lord Caitanya, they can perform the highest activity and fulfill the highest religious purpose of satisfying the Supreme Lord.

"Srila Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya, a famous disciple of Lord Caitanya, said: 'The principle of transcendental devotional service having been lost, Sri Krishna Caitanya has appeared to deliver again the process of devotion. He is so kind that He is distributing love of Krishna. Everyone should be attracted more and more to His lotus feet, as humming bees are attracted to a lotus flower.' "

The incarnation of Caitanya Mahaprabhu is also described in the Sri Vishnu-sahasra-nama, which appears in Chapter 189 of the Dana-dharma-parva of Mahabharata. Srila Jiva Gosvami has quoted this reference as follows: suvarna-varno hemango varangas candanangadi. "In His early pastimes He appears as a householder with a golden complexion. His limbs are beautiful, and His body, smeared with the pulp of sandalwood, seems like molten gold." He has also quoted, sannyasa-kric chamah santo nishtha-santi-parayanah: "In His later pastimes He accepts the sannyasa order, and He is equipoised and peaceful. He is the highest abode of peace and devotion, for He silences the impersonalist nondevotees."

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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, Founder Acarya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness
His Holiness Hrdayananda dasa Goswami
Gopiparanadhana dasa Adhikari
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