Essential verse of Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu

Citta Hari Dasa - August 1, 2013 2:22 pm

In the wake of Guru Maharaja's lecture series on the BRS along with my own study of it I was inspired to compile the essential verses of the book so as to have an easy reference for the core concepts and definitions in uttama-bhakti. Knowing these verses (definitions) is important for us as practitioners since having precise definitions of the various aspects of bhakti is the first step in gaining a clear intellectual understanding of what we're involved in. This then can help us to focus our practice in such a way that our understanding can evolve beyond the intellectual level to the realm of feeling and taste for bhakti. It's my hope that this compilation may be of use to the devotees and so I'm posting it here for their pleasure. If I've missed any important verses be sure to post them!

Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu anubindhu

(An atomic particle of a drop of the ocean of bhakti-rasa)

Essential verses of BRS

(Bhanu Swami's translation)

1. Definition of uttama-bhakti

BRS 1.1.11

anyabhilasita-sunyam jnana-karmady-anavrtam

anukulyena krsnanu- silanam bhaktir uttama

Translation: The highest bhakti is defined as continuous service or emotions directed towards Kåñëa, His expansion forms or others related to Him, with a pleasing attitude towards Kåñëa. It should be devoid of desires other than the desire to please the Lord, and unobstructed by impersonal jnana, the materialistic rituals of karma or other unfavorable acts.

Pramana verse: 1.1.12

sarvopadhi-vinirmuktam tat-paratvena nirmalam

hrisikena hrisikesa-sevanam bhaktir ucyate ||12||

Translation: Thus, Narada-pancaratra says:

Bhakti is defined as service to the Lord using the senses. It should be done with the intention of pleasing the Lord, free of other desires, and unobstructed by other processes.

Three stages of maturity of bhakti

2. Definition of sadhana-bhakti

BRS 1.2.2

krti-sadhya bhavet sadhya-bhava sa sadhanabhidha

nitya-siddhasya bhavasya prakatyam hrdi sadhyata

Action of the senses, which produces the stage of bhava, is called sadhana-bhakti. This attained state of bhava-bhakti (sadhyata) is an eternal sthayi-bhava which is not created, but simply manifests within the soul by the spiritual energy of the Lord.

3. Definition of bhava-bhakti

BRS 1.3.1

suddha-sattva-visesatma prema-suryamsu-samya-bhak

rucibhis citta-masrnya-krd asau bhava ucyate

Translation: That part of bhakti is called bhava, whose essence is samvit and hladini sakti, which is one ray of the sun of prema which will soon rise in the heart, and which softens the heart with desires to meet, serve, and exchange love with the Lord.

Symptoms of bhava

BRS 1.3.25-26

ksantir avyartha-kalatvam viraktir mana-sunyata

asa-bandhah samutkantha nama-gane sada rucih

asaktis tad-gunakhyane pritis tad-vasati-sthale

ity adayo ’nubhavah syur jata-bhavankure jane

Translation: The anubhavas or characteristics of a person who has developed the bud of bhava are as follows: tolerance, not wasting time, detachment from enjoyment, pridelessness, con- fidence in the Lord’s mercy, longing for the Lord, taste for chanting the name of the Lord, attachment to discussing about the Lord’s qualities, and attachment to living in the abode of the Lord.

4. Definition of prema-bhakti

BRS 1.4.1

samyan-masrnita-svanto mamatvatisayankitah

bhavah sa eva sandratma budhaih prema nigadyate

Translation: When bhava becomes extremely condensed, it is called prema by the learned. It softens the heart completely and produces extreme possessiveness of the Lord in the experiencer.

Two basic types of bhakti: vaidhi and raganuga

5. Definition of vaidhi-bhakti

BRS 1.2.6

yatra raganavaptatvat pravrttir upajayate

sasanenaiva sastrasya sa vaidhi bhaktir ucyate

Where the actions of bhakti arise, not from the attainment of raga, but by the teachings of scriptures, it is called vaidhi-bhakti.

Pramana verse: 1.2.8

smartavyam satatam visnur vismartavyo na jatucit

sarva-vidhi-nisedhah syur etayor eva kinkarah

One should always remember Visnu and never forget Him. All injunctions and prohibitions are dependent on these two principles.

6. Adhikara for vaidhi-bhakti

BRS 1.2.14

yah kenapy atibhagyena jata-sraddho ’sya sevane

natisakto na vairagya-bhag asyam adhikary asau

The person who has developed faith in serving the Lord by impressions arising from previous association with devotees, who is not too attached to material objects, and who is not too detached, is qualified for vaidhi-bhakti.

Jiva Gosvami’s Commentary

Previously, in defining vaidhi-bhakti, it was said that vaidhi-bhakti existed where the actions were inspired by the teachings of scripture. Thus, it may be concluded that the root cause of a person’s bhakti is faith in the content of scriptures. Conviction in the contents of the scriptures is called sraddha or faith. According to the degree of faith in the scriptures, there will be classifications of persons possessing that faith.

Definition of uttama-adhikari: 1.2.17

sastre yuktau ca nipunah sarvatha drdha-niscayah

praudha-sraddho ’dhikari yah sa bhaktav uttamo matah

The person who is skilful in scripture and logic, completely firm in his belief, with deep faith, is considered qualified as uttama in vaidhi-bhakti.

Definition of madhyama-adhikari: 1.2.18

yah sastradisv anipunah sraddhavan sa tu madhyamah

The person who is not fully conversant with scriptures like the uttamadhikari but has firm conviction in them is known as the madhyamadhikari.

Definition of kanistha-adhikari: 1.2.19

yo bhavet komala-sraddhah sa kanistho nigadyate

He who has weak faith because of even less knowledge of scrip- tures than the madhyamädhikäré is called the kanistha.

7. Definition of raganuga-bhakti

BRS 1.2.270

virajantim abhivyaktam vraja-vasi janadisu

ragatmikam anusrta ya sa raganugocyate

Translation: Raganuga-bhakti is defined as that bhakti which follows after the ragamika-bhakti found distinctively in the inhabitants of Vraja.

8. Definition of ragatmika-bhakti

BRS 1.2.272

iste svarasiki ragah paramavistata bhavet

tan-mayi ya bhaved bhaktih satra ragatmikodita

Translation: Raga is defined as spontaneous, deep thirst for the object of love. Bhakti that is impelled exclusively by such a thirst is called ragatmika-bhakti.

9. Two types of ragatmika-bhakti

BRS 1.2.273

sa kamarupa sambandha-rupa ceti bhaved dvidha

Translation: There are two types of ragatmika-bhakti: that impelled by conjugal feelings (kama-rupa) and that impelled by other relationships (sambandha-rupa).

10. Qualification for raganuga-bhakti

BRS 1.2.291

ragatmikaika-nisyha ye vraja-vasi-janadayah

tesam bhavaptaye lubdho bhaved atradhikaravan

Translation: The qualification for raganuga-bhakti is as follows:

That person who is greedy for attaining a bhava similar to that of the inhabitants of Vraja—who are fixed solely in ragatmika- bhakti—is qualified for raganuga-bhakti.

11. The method of raganuga-bhakti

BRS 1.2.294-296

krsnah smaran janan casya prestham nija-samihitam

tat-tat-katha-ratas casau kuryad vasam vraje sada

Translation: Remembering the Vrndavana form of Krsna and His dear associates who have inclinations for service similar to one’s own, absorbing oneself in hearing topics related to them, one should always live in Vraja.

seva sadhaka-rupena siddha-rupena catra hi

tad-bhava-lipsuna karya vraja-lokanusaratah

Translation: Following after the inhabitants of Vraja, one should perform service in one’s physical body and in one’s siddha body, with a desire for a particular bhäva.

sravanotkirtanadini vaidha-bhakty-uditani tu

yany angani ca tany atra vijneyani manisibhih

Translation: The discriminating practitioners should accept the angas which were mentioned in vaidhi-bhakti such as hearing and chanting as the angas of rägänuga-bhakti.

Two divisions of raganuga-bhakti

12. Definition of kamanuga-bhakti

BRS 1.2.297-298

kamanuga bhavet trsna kama-rupanugamini ||297||

sambhogeccha-mayi tat-tad-bhavecchatmeti sa dvidha ||298||

That raganuga-sadhana-bhakti which is filled with longing and which follows after the kama-rupa-ragatmika-bhakti of the siddha-bhaktas, is called kamanuga-bhakti. There are two types: sambhogeccha-mayi and tad-tad-bhavecchatma.

13. Definition of sambandhanuga-bhakti

BRS 1.2.305

sa sambandhanuga bhaktih procyate sadbhir atmani

ya pitrtvadi-sambandha-mananaropanatmika

The devotees define sambandhanuga-bhakti as that bhakti in which there is a constant contemplation of oneself as a parent, friend or servant of Krsna, and identification with the role.

Southern Ocean

Definition of vibhava

BRS 2.1.14

tatra vibhava –
tatra jneya vibhavas tu raty-asvadana-hetavah

te dvidhalambana eke tathaivoddipanah pare

Translation: In rasa, the vibhavas should be known as the causes of relishing rati. They take the form of support (alambana) of two types and stimuli (uddipana).

BRS 2.5.87

rates tu tat-tad-asvada-visesayatiyogyatam

vibhavayanti kurvantity ukta dhirair vibhavakah

Translation: Those conditions which cause (vibhavayanti) rati (relationship of love) to become very suitable for relishing particular tastes are called vibhava (excitants) by the wise.

Definition of anubhava

BRS 2.2.1

anubhavas tu citta-stha-bhavanam avabodhakah

te bahir vikriya prayah prokta udbhasvarakhyaya

Translation: Anubhavas refers to those things which express the bhava situated within the heart. They are predominantly external transformations, and are thus called udbhasvara (shining in the body).

BRS 2.5.88

tam canubhavayanty antas tanvanty asvada-nirbharam

ity ukta anubhavas te kataksadyah sa-sattvikah

Translation: Those elements such as glancing, accompanied by the sattvika-bhavas, which produce fullness of the rati produced by the vibhava--in other words, which spread within the mind an additional relish (anubhavayanti)--are called anubhavas.

Definition of sattva and sattvika-bhava

BRS 2.3.1-2

krsna-sambandhibhih saksat kincid va vyavadhanatah

bhavais cittam ihakrantam sattvam ity ucyate budhaih

On the topic of rasa, when the heart becomes overwhelmed by ratis or bhavas in relation to Krsna, either directly or indirectly, the learned call this sattva.

sattvad asmat samutpanna ye ye bhavas te tu sattvikah

snigdha digdhas tatha ruksa ity ami trividha matah

The transformations which arise solely from this sattva are called sattvika-bhavas. There are three types of sattvika-bhavas: snigdha (affectionate, arising from genuine rati), digdha (tainted, arising from other emotions) and ruksa (contaminated, arising in a person without rati).

Definition of vyabhicari-bhava

BRS 2.4.1-3

athocyante trayas-trimsad-bhava ye vyabhicarinah

visesenabhimukhyena caranti sthayinam prati

Hereafter, the thirty-three vyabhicari-bhavas will be described. They are called vyabhicari-bhavas since they move (caranti) against the sthayi-bhava, while assisting it in a distinctive way (visesena abhimukhyena)

vag-anga-sattva-sucya jneyas te vyabhicarinam

sancarayanti bhavasya gatim sancarino ’pi

The vyabhicari-bhavas reveal themselves by words, by eye brows and other bodily parts and by external actions (anubhavas) which arise from overwhelming emotions (sattva). Since they set in motion (sancarayanti) the course of the sthayi-bhava, they are called sancari-bhavas.

unmajjanti nimajjanti sthayiny amrta-varidhau

urmivad vardhayanty enam yanti tad-rupatam ca te

All the vyabhicari-bhavas, rising and falling like waves in the sweet ocean of the sthayi-bhava, increase the sthayi-bhava and then merge into the sthayi-bhava.

BRS 2.5.89

sancarayanti vaicitrim nayante tam tatha-vidham

ye nirvedadayo bhavas te tu sancarino matah

Those mental conditions such as nirveda (self-deprecation) which produce further variety in the rati (sancarayanti) induced by the vibhavas and made more enjoyable by the anubhavas, are called sancari-bhavas or vyabhicari-bhavas.

Definition of sthayi-bhava

BRS 2.5.1

aviruddhan viruddhams ca bhavan yo vasatam nayan

su-rajeva virajeta sa sthayi bhava ucyate

That bhava which, controlling other favorable bhavas such as hasya and contradictory bhavas such as krodha, presides in the manner of an efficient ruler, is called the sthayi-bhava.

Definition of rasa

BRS 2.5.132

vyatitya bhavana-vartma yas camatkara-kara-bhuh

hrdi sattvojjvale badham svadate sa raso matah

That which becomes even more intensely relished in the heart made bright with hladini and samvit saktis (attainment of bhava), after surpassing the stage of distinguishing the constituent bhavas, and which becomes more astonishing in bliss than bhava, is called rasa.


Braja-sundari Dasi - August 5, 2013 1:53 am

Thank you, Citta Hari for these drops of nectar from the Bhakti Ocean! :Praying:

Bijaya Kumara Das - August 6, 2013 5:00 am

oh captain my captain

thank you for the help-siksha

this is awesome


look forward to seeing you in person

Guru-nistha Das - August 17, 2013 2:39 pm

Thanks for the verses, Citta! A nice service.