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VIRACANDRA (VIRABHADRA GOSVAMI)

Page history last edited by Juan Castañeira 10 years, 7 months ago

VIRACANDRA (VIRABHADRA GOSVAMI)

 

He was the son of Lord Nityananda and was also known as "Viracandra" and "Jagatdurlabha." He was born of Vasudha. In his past incarnation he was Payodhisayi, Nisatha, Ulmuka (GGD. 67). He was a disciple of Jahnava Mata.

 

According to BRK. 9.420, Viracandra, at the desire of Jahnava, married both the daughters of Yadunandana Acarya, a resident of Jhamatpura near Rajabalahat. His wives were named Srimati and Narayani. Jahnava gave diksa to these two women, while Viracandra gave diksa to his father-in-law, Yadunandana.

 

Viracandra had three sons namely Gopijanavallabha, Ramakrsna and Ramacandra. All three were ardent devotees.

 

Viracandra once left Khardaha on a pilgrimage to Vrndavana passing through Saptagrama, Santipura, Amvika, Navadvipa, Srikhanda, Yajigrama, Kantakanagara and Kheturi. Right through he was warmly received by devotees and he performed and danced ecstatically in love of God.

 

In Vrndavana his presence was a great pleasure for the devotees there such as Bhugarbha, Jiva Gosvami, etc. who showed him great respect. Viracandra and his devotees visited Dvadasa Vana and met Kaviraja Gosvami at Radhakunda. Kaviraja Gosvami accompanied Viracandra from Radha Kunda to Vrndavana.

 

On the occasion of the installation ceremony of Radhavinoda in the house of Govinda Cakravarti, a disciple of Srinivasa Acarya and a resident of Borakuli village, Viracandra charmed the audience by his ecstatic dancing in harmony with the kirtana sung by Narottama Thakura.

 

Viracandra zealously took up the task of preaching and maintaining the sanctity of the faith. There was a person named Jayagopala belonging to the Kayastha caste who lived in the village of Kandra in the land of Radha. He was extremely proud of his erudition. Since Jayagopala's guru was not very learned the former never spoke about and his guru and when specifically asked to mention who his guru was Jayagopala referred to his parama-guru.

 

Once, out of vanity, Jayagopala showed disrespect to the prasadam. Thereafter Viracandra cut off all relations with Jayagopala and informed the rest of the Vaisnava community of it. Thus the entire community also threw Jayagopala out.

 

In CC. 1.11.8 it is stated that Virabhadra was the trunk and from him sprang numerous branches.

 

Viracandra's third and youngest son Ramacandra lived at Khardaha and his family-descendants settled in the following places: Vrndavana, Navadvipa, Khardaha, Calcutta, Dhaka, Butni, Uddharanapura, Saptagrama, etc. Viracandra's second son Ramakrsna settled at Maldaha and his family descendants lived at Vrndavana, Gayespura, Sodpur, Kanaidanga, Gorabajar, Mado, etc. Viracandra's eldest son Gopijanavallabha lived at Lata. His family descendants spread and settled in the following places: Latadaha, Nupuravallabhapura, Purunia in Bankura district, Kodala, Moktarpur, Agartala, Jessore, etc. The genealogical line descends as follows:

 

 

                     

                                 Ramacandra

                                          |

_________________________|__________________________

|                           |                         |                             |

|                           |                         |                             |

Ramadeva     Krsnadeva             Radhamadhava           Visnudeva

|

________________________|_____________________

|                          |                 |              |             |

Gopikanta      Raghava        Ragendra Yadava    Balarama

|

Harigovinda

(migrated from Khardaha to Butni village in Dhaka)

                      |

_____________|________________

|                     |                         |

Sarvesvara Vangesvara          Nandesvara

|

_______________|______________

|                        |                     |

Laksmikanta Gopikrsna          Ratnakrsna

                         |

      _________    |

     |

     |

Krsnakisora

    |

    |_______________________

    |                                      |

Candramohana                Atlokamohana

                    |

____________|______________

|                                         |

|                                         |

Krsnagopala                     Pranagopala

 

 

In CCU P. 690-692 B.B. Majumdar writes as follows: VV. of Jiva 51-54, Devakinandana 12-13, Vrndavanadasa 15-17. There is no mention of Viracandra's name in CBh., CC. 1.11.5-9 refers to Virabhadra.

 

When mentioning the names of Advaita Acarya's sons, Krsnadasa Kaviraja in each case introduced them as "Advaitanandana" but while writing about Virabhadra, Kaviraja Gosvami never mentioned him as the son of Nityananda. This led some to argue that Virabhadra was not the son, but disciple of Nityananda.

 

Jayananda P. 151 and BRK. P. 589 refer to Virabhadra as the son of Nityananda. Virabhadra must have been born during the lifetime of Lord Caitanya, otherwise his name wouldn't have been found in GGD and VV. Perhaps he was a child when Vrndavana dasa wrote CBh. and hence his name was not mentioned.

 

It is said that Viracandra converted 1,200 Nedanedi into Vaisnavism. They were possibly Sahajiya Buddhists.

 

The following is taken from GPC:

 

Srimad Viracandra or Sri Virabhadra was born in the month of Kartika (Oct-Nov), on the 9th day of the black fortnight. He was the manifestation of Sri Sankarsana. He was the inseparable vigraha-svarupa of Sri Caitanya. In Bhakti-ratnakara, Sri Narahari Cakravarti has written that Viracandra Prabhu was the son of Sri Nityananda and Srimati Vasudha. He was the disciple of Jahnava Mata. Sri Yadunandana Acarya was the disciple of Sri Viracandra and his two daughters Sri Sat and Sri Narayani were initiated by Sri Jahnava Mata. The daughter of Sri Vasudha and sister of Sri Viracandra Sri Ganga devi was the manifestation of the Ganges. She was married to Sri Madhava Acarya and he was the manifestation of King Santanu. VV. mentions the name of Sri Madhava Acarya.

 

After receiving his mother's permission, Sri Viracandra Prabhu proceeded to Sri Vrndavana. He first reached the house of Sri Uddharana Datta Thakura in Saptagrama. Srinivasa Thakura, the son of Sri Uddharana Thakura, entertained him with much honor for two days. From there Viracandra Prabhu came to Sri Advaita Bhavan in Santipura and was received and treated with much care by Sri Krsna Misra, the son of Advaita Acarya. From Santipura he reached Amvika-Kalna and stayed at Sri Gauridasa Pandita's house. Sri Hrday Caitanya Prabhu entertained him nicely. When he reached Jagannatha Misra's house in Navadvipa a hearty reception was given to him by the relatives of Mahaprabhu. He then went to Srikhanda where Sri Raghunandana and Kanai Thakura showed him great respect and embraced him. After spending a few days, Sri Viracandra Prabhu reached the house of Srinivasa Acarya in Yajigrama. Acarya Prabhu worshiped him with deep respect. There he participated in a grand sankirtana festival and afterwards went to Kantakanagara. He stayed for one day and then went on to Sri Govindaraja's house in Budhari. Sri Govinda Kaviraja worshiped him along with his many associates. Sri Viracandra was very pleased with their devotion and stayed there for two days. After that he went to Kheturi. There he spent time with Sri Narottama Thakura, performing sankirtana with great delight and then left for Sri Vrndavana.

 

On his way to Vrndavana, many degraded and fallen persons came under his influence and were completely rectified. When he reached Vrndavana all the Gosvamis of Vrndavana came forward to welcome him. They were Sri Jiva Gosvami, Sri Krsna dasa Kaviraja, Sri Ananta Acarya, Sri Haridasa Pandita-Sri Madana gopala deva's priest, Sri Gopinatha Adhikari, Sri Madhu Pandita and his brother Sri Bhavananda the priest of Sri Gopinatha, Sri Kasisvara and his disciple Sri Govinda Gosvami and Sri Yadavacarya and others (BRK).

 

Then Sri Viracandra Prabhu was permitted by Sri Bhugarbha Gosvami and Sri Jiva Gosvami to visit the forests of Vrndavana. He visited the twelve forests in Mathura, Sri Radhakunda and Syamakunda and Govardhana hill, etc. Many people who saw him were charmed by his display of devotional ecstacy. After spending some time in Vrndavana, he returned to Gauda and his fame spread far and wide. Like Sri Nityananda Prabhu, he was enriched with divine wealth.

 

Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Prabhupada has written in CC. Anubhasya that Gopijanavallabha, Ramakrsna and Ramacandra were his three sons, and also his disciples. Ramacandra, the youngest one lived in Khardaha. The eldest, Sri Gopijanavallabha lived in Latagrama near Manakara, and the second son Ramakrsna lived in Ganesapura near Maladaha.

 

Virabhadra efficiently organized the Vaisnava community in Gaura Vanga. He showed great respect to Srinivasa Acarya and Narottama Thakura. The authority which Virabhadra exercised over the Vaisnava community can be understood from a letter extracted in BRK.

 

Jayagopala dasa, a Kayastha and a resident of Kanda slighted his guru, being puffed up with the arrogance of erudition hence Viracandra socially excommunicated him and forbid all the devotees to associate with him.

 

Jayagopala dasa was not a person of insignificant stature. He received the grace of Sundarananda Thakura, a companion of Nityananda. Jayagopala wrote Sanskrit books such as: Hari-bhakti-ratnakra, Bhakti-bhava-pradipa, Krsna-vilasa, Manovuddhi-sandarbha, Dharma-sandarbha, Anumana-samanvaya and in Bengali Gopalavilasa. It is clear from the story of Jayagopala that thereafter a hostile group turned against Viracandra. The associates of Nityananda were accustomed to wear the dress of a cowherd and a Cuda on the head. Viracandra forbade them to wear a Cuda. When one refused to abide by his order, Viracandra excommunicated him also. People following this dissenting group are known to belong to the Cudadhari sampradaya.

 

 

 

 

 

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