Shri Shrimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja
[This is a glorification of Shri Ramacandra Kaviraja given by Shrila Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja in Badger, May 18, 2003.]
[ Just after the devotees sang Bhajahu Re Mana by Shri Govinda dasa Kaviraja, Shrila Narayana Maharaja gave a short history of the author and his brother, Shri Ramacandra Kaviraja:]
Shrila Narrottama dasa Thakura prays, "Please give me the association of Ramacandra Kaviraja. Please place me with him."
doya koro Shri acarya prabhu Shrinivasa
ramacandra-sanga mage narottama dasa.
["O Shri Krishna Chaitanya Prabhu, be merciful to me. Except for You, who in this material existence is so full of compassion?" (Shri Krishna Chaitanya Prabhu Daya Karo More, verse 6)]
Shrila Narottama dasa Thakura, Shrila Shrinivasa Acarya, and Shri Syamananda Prabhu were associates. Shrinivasa Acarya was an elevated acarya. Once he was sitting in an asrama, and nearby were a newly wedded girl and her husband. Approaching the asrama, the carriers of the wedding palanquins thought to stop there for water and cooling shade. They put the palanquins down there and took water.
Seeing the wedding party, Shrinivasa Acarya said, "This foolish person has obtained a poisonous black snake, and he is keeping it around his neck. That very snake will bite him and he will die, but he does not know this."
Hearing the words of Shrinivasa Acarya, the bridegroom at once approached him and said, "What are you saying? I could not understand thoroughly." Shrinivasa replied, "He who marries does not know that his wife is a black serpent – a very poisonous snake. He does not know that she will bite him and he will die." The bridegroom's eyes were at once opened, and he told the palanquin carrier, "Return this girl to her father."
As the carrier began returning the weeping girl to her father's house, that boy told Shrinivasa Acarya, "I want to serve you forever. I am giving myself to you; my life is now in your hands."
He later became known as Ramacandra Kaviraja. He was a very elevated devotee, a realized soul.
Once, the brother of Ramacandra Kaviraja, named Durgadha became very sick. Although several people tried to save his life by administering many medicines and by worshipping the demigoddess Durga, still, day by day his health was decreasing and he was now about to die. Ramacandra Kaviraja came to him and asked, "Why are you worshipping Durga? Why aren't you worshipping Krishna, Govinda? Take responsibility for yourself and chant 'Govinda,' one-pointedly. In this way you'll be cured, your life will be saved, and you'll be happy forever." Hearing this, Durgadha agreed: "Durga couldn't help me". He took initiation from his elder brother and gradually, in three or four days, as if by some magical effect, his illness was cured, his health was restored, and he began to do bhajana under the guidance of his guru.
From then on, Durgadha became known as Govinda dasa Kaviraja. He was an excellent writer and poet, and after he wrote "Bhajahu re mana, Shri nanda-nandana abhaya-caranaravinda re," he sent it to Shrila Jiva Gosvami. When Jiva Gosvami heard the bhajana of Govinda dasa Kaviraja, he appreciated it so much that he told him, "Continue to compose kirtanas like these. You are very qualified, so you should compose more, and send them to me in Vrndavana." Shrila Govinda dasa Kaviraja then composed many poems of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and Shri Radha-Krishna.
Abhaya-caranaravinda re (the place of fearlessness – the lotus feet of Shri Krishna). Shrila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Prabhupada gave this name, Abhaya Caranaravinda, to Parama-pujyapada Shrila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja.
Bhajahu re mana has been a favorite bhajana in our guru-parampara, and Shrila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja used to sing this song, weeping and his heart melting. Bhajahu re mana, Shri nanda-nandana abhaya-caranaravinda re. He was meeting with the inner, transcendental meaning of his own name, and he used to weep.
We should also have strong faith in this, bhajahu re mana. Every one of these songs has a deep history behind them.