Shri Shyamananda Prabhu Appearance

By Ramai Swami - 23.4 2024

Shri Shyamananda, Shrinvasa and Shri Narottama Dasa Thakura are all eternal associates of Shri Gaurasundara.  For the purpose of preaching the holy message of Sri Caitanya all over the earth they appeared within this world.

Sri Syamananda made his appearance at Utkala in the village of Dharenda Bahadurpur. His father’s name was Sri Krsna Mandal and his mother’s name was Sri Durika. Sri Krsna Mandal, who descended in the line of sad-gopas, had many sons and daughters who unfortunately passed away before the birth of this son. For this reason this son was named Dukhiya.

As time passed, the purificatory rites, his first taking of grains, tonsure (the hair-cutting ceremony) and the rites for beginning his education were performed, one after the other. The scholars were astounded to see his profound intellect.

Within a short period he completed his studies of grammar, poetry and rhetoric. When he heard of the glories of Sri Gaura-Nityananda from the Vaishnavas of his village, a very deep attachment to Their lotus feet developed in him.

Sri Krsna Mandal was himself a very advanced devotee. Seeing that his son was always absorbed in thinking of Gaura-Nityananda. He told him that he should be initiated into the divine mantra.

The boy replied, “Sri Hrdaya Caitanya is my guru. He is at Ambika Kalna. His guru is Sri Gauri dasa Pandita. The two brothers, Sri Gaura-Nityananda, are eternally present in his house. If you give your permission, I will proceed to there to become his disciple.”

Sri Hrdaya Caitanya was very pleased by him. He told the boy, “From now your name is Krsna das. Since early this morning I was feeling that someone would come today.” Sri Hrdaya Caitanya could see that his new disciple was extremely intelligent and at the same time very devoted, so he ordered him to go to Vrindavana to study the shastras under the tutelage of Srila Jiva Gosvami. 

Srila Jiva Gosvami was extremely happy to receive Duhkhi Krsna dasa into his care. Krsna das very carefully began to serve Jiva Gosvami as well as study the literatures of the Gosvamis.
Srinivasa Acarya and Narottama dasa Thakura also came to Sri Jiva at this time to study under him. Thus Krsna das had the opportunity to meet them.

Krsna das requested Srila Jiva Gosvami for a special service. Sri Jiva instructed him to sweep the forest grove of Sevakunja everyday. From that day he began to carry out this service with great pleasure. 

One day while Krsna das was cleaning the kunja, his heart filled with love. Just then he happened to notice a very beautiful ankle bracelet lying in the dust. He picked it up, touched it to his head and then bound it in the corner of his upper cloth. “I’ll give it to whomever it belongs to when they come to look for it,” he thought.

The next morning the gopis noticed that Srimati Radharani’s left ankle bracelet was missing. Radharani explained, “Last night, when I was dancing in the kunja, it must have fallen off. Please look for it and bring it back to me.”

When the gopis came to search for the bracelet, Visakha devi noticed Krsna das sweeping the grove. She asked him, “Have you found an ankle bracelet here?” Duhkhi Krsna dasa was so mesmerized by her sweet words and radiant form, which was like that of a demigoddess descended from heaven, that he simply stared at her dumbfounded. Again she asked him, “Have you found an ankle bracelet here?”

After a few moments, Visakha devi returned with Srimati Radha Thakurani who stood in the shade at the foot of a large tree. Visakha called out to Krsna dasa, “Bhakta, the person who lost her ankle bracelet has come to receive it.”

Visakha then told him, “O best of the devotees! Our Sakhi wants to give you a benediction to express her gratitude.”

Duhkhi Krsna dasa saw the holy waters of Radha kunda before him. After offering his obeisances, he immersed himself in her waters. Thus he attained a transcendentally beautiful feminine form. Coming out of the sacred kunda, he stood before Visakha devi and offered prayers. Taking this ‘forest sakhi’ by the hand, Visakha approached Srimati Radha Thakurani, and the new sakhi fell down at Her lotus feet. Then Srimati Radharani decorated her forehead with tilaka using the ankle bracelet and the kumkum of her lotus feet.

“This tilak will remain on your forehead. From today you will be known as Shyamananda. Now you can go.” After She said this, Srimati Radha Thakurani and Her sakhis were no longer to be seen. Dukhi Krsna dasa’s trance broke and he found himself as before, alone and in his male body: yet with the tilaka applied by Srimati Radharani still on his forehead. Being overwhelmed with emotion, he repeated over and over, “What have I seen?”

Sri Shyamananda, Srinivasa and Sri Narottama began to pass their days in great bliss, studying the literatures of the goswamis and begging a little to eat from door to door. The three of them resolved to continue in this way and thus devote the better part of their time to serving and worshipping Sri Krsna in Vrindavana.

The goswamis held a council together and decided that these three should be sent to Gaudadesa to preach the teachings of Mahaprabhu as presented in the gosvami literature. One day Srila Jiva Gosvami called the three of them together and informed them of this decision. Thus the three of them accepted that order on their bowed heads.

Written by: Ramai Swami on April 23, 2024.