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Srila Narottama Dasa Thakura Disappearance Day

By Sacinandana Swami

Narottama got his name from Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu personally. His name means “the best of humans”.

It so happened that on His travels the Lord once stopped at the banks of the sacred Padma river – a branch of mother Ganga – and called out lovingly, “Narottama, Narottama, Narottama!” Astonished to see Sri Caitanya’s ecstasy, Nityananda asked Him, “Who is it who brings such joy to Your heart my Lord?” Sri Caitanya answered, “He is yet to appear. When he does I have a special gift for him. I will deposit it until then within the Ganga.”

With this the Lord celled mother Ganga and when the Goddess appeared He gave her the love of His heart, which had a golden color. “But how will I recognize Your Narottama?” asked mother Ganga. “When he takes his bath, your banks will flood with ecstasy!” answered Sri Caitanya.

Several years after Sri Caitanya’s disappearance, Narottama was given the extraordinary brilliant love of Godhead that is so special to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu while taking his bath in mother Ganga once early morning.

The way Narottama disappeared is absolutely spectacular. When he was very old, he went with a few of his disciples into the Ganges to take his final bath. Then and there his body dissolved into milk and colored mother Ganga white. Who can understand the personality of a dear associate of the Lord?

During his earthly pastimes, Narottama wrote many songs in which he provided guidelines for the devotees. Here is one which happened to be a favorite of Srila Prabhupada. I once heard His Divine Grace sing it with tears in his eyes…

hari hari! biphale janama gonainu
manusya-janama paiya, radha-krsna na bhajiya,
janiya suniya bisa khainu

O Lord Hari I have spent my life uselessly. Having obtained a human birth and having not worshiped Radha and Krsna, I have knowingly drunk poison.

golokera prema-dhana, hari-nama-sankirtana,
rati na janmilo kene tay
samsara-bisanale, diba-nisi hiya jwale,
juraite na koinu upay

The treasure of divine love in Goloka Vrindavana has descended as the congregational chanting of Lord Hari´s holy names. Why did my attraction for that chanting never come about? Day and night my heart burns from the fire of the poison of worldliness, and I have not taken the means to relieve it.

brajendra-nandana jei, saci-suta hoilo sei,
balarama hoilo nitai
dina-hina jata chilo, hari-name uddharilo,
tara saksi jagai madhai

Lord Krishna, who is the son of the King of Vraja, became the son of Saci (Lord Caitanya), and Balarama became Nitai. The holy name delivered all those souls who were lowly and wretched. The two sinners Jagai and Madhai are evidence of this.

ha ha prabhu nanda-suta, vrsabhanu-suta-juta,
koruna karoho ei-baro
narottama-dasa koy, na theliho ranga pay,
toma bine ke ache amara

O Lord Krishna, son of Nanda, accompanied by the daughter of Vrisabhanu, please be merciful to me now. Narottama Dasa says, "O Lord, please do not push me away from Your reddish lotus feet, for who is my beloved except for You?"

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