Sri Nityananda Prabhu—An Incarnation of Mercy
We welcome you on the most auspicious occasion of Sri Nityananda-trayodasi, in the merciful presence of Sri Sri Nitai-Gaurahari and other Deities. We shall read two verses from Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Adi-lila, Chapter Five: “The Glories of Lord Nityananda Balarama.”
preme matta nityananda krpa-avatara
uttama, adhama, kichu na kare vicara
preme—in ecstatic love; matta—mad; nityananda—Lord Nityananda; krpa—merciful; avatara—incarnation; uttama—good; adhama—bad; kichu—any; na—not; kare—makes; vicara—consideration.
Because He is intoxicated by ecstatic love and is an incarnation of mercy, He does not distinguish between the good and the bad.
ye age padaye, tare karaye nistara
ataeva nistarila mo-hena duracara
ye—whoever; age—in front; padaye—falls down; tare—unto him; karaye—does; nistara—deliverance; ataeva—therefore; nistarila—delivered; mo—as me; hena—such; duracara—sinful and fallen person.
He delivers all those who fall down before Him. Therefore He has delivered such a sinful and fallen person as me.
COMMENT by Giriraj Swami
First we will discuss some of the important words in these verses so that we can better understand the direct meaning, and then we will see how the verses apply to us.
Preme means “in ecstatic love.” The author of Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Sri Krsnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami, following Srila Rupa Gosvami, has explained that there are different stages in bhakti and that the highest goal of attainment is prema, prema-bhakti—pure love for Godhead. Nityananda Prabhu is an incarnation of Balarama, who is the first expansion of Krishna, and so we may say that Nityananda Prabhu is the first expansion of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Like Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, Nityananda Prabhu also feels ecstatic love and is intoxicated by such love.
Krpa-avatara. He is an expansion of mercy. The word avatara literally means “one who descends.” Nityananda Prabhu, along with Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, descended from the spiritual world specifically to distribute mercy. And in doing so He did not consider who was good or bad (uttama, adhama), high or low. He saved all who fell down before Him. Therefore (ataeva) He delivered one as duracara, sinful and fallen, as me. In other words, being duracara is not a disqualification to receive Nityananda’s mercy, as long as one has the qualification. The qualification is age padaye tare: one should fall down before Him. In other words, one should be humble.