Disappearance Day of Srila Devananda Pandit

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In order to expand the glories and assist in the pastimes of Sri Krishna, Sri Sachinandan Gaurahari and his various incarnations, numerous associates of his take birth along with him and perform their designated roles in the pastimes of the Lord. Thus Bhaguri Muni, the chief priest of Nanda Baba in Vraja, appeared as Sri Devananda Pandit in the pastimes of Sri Gaurachandra.

Residing in Nawadwip, he would speak on the Srimad Bhagawatam while being surrounded by his numerous students. Once Srila Srivas Pandit came to the assembly of Devananda Pandit and started listening to him reciting Srimad Bhagawatam. Overcome by his transcendental love of Godhead, he started shedding tears in ecstasy and started rolling on the ground. Thinking him to be a crazy fellow, the students of Devananda Pandit picked him up and put him outside. Devananda Pandit, however, did not stop them from committing this grave offence at the lotus feet of such an exalted devotee, as he himself was also ignorant about the glories of the vaishnavas. This occurred before the appearance of Sri Gaurasundar and later when Sri Sachinandan was present and was passing by the home where Devananda Pandit was staying, he heavily objected to Devananda’s recitation of the Bhagwatam, saying that he had no idea about the true import of the Srimad Bhagwatam, for the Book Bhagwat can only be understood by the mercy of the devotee Bhagawat. Despite hearing the statements of Mahaprabhu, Devananda Pandit could not understand these sublime truths and therefore did not pay heed to the statements of Gaurahari. It was only after Nimai took sanyas that he started realizing his mistake and developed faith in Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.

Once thereafter, Sri Vakreshwar pandit was visiting the house of one of the vaishnavas in Kuliya and Devananda Pandit was present there at the time. In ecstatic love of Godhead, Vakreshwar Pandit started singing and dancing continuously for hours. Soon a crowd gathered to see him, and at that time Devananda pandit took up a stick and started controlling the crowd so that no one would disturb the dancing of Sri Vakreshwar Pandit. This act of service granted him the mercy of Sri Vakreshwar Pandit.

Due to the mercy that he had received by performing service at the lotus feet of Sri Vakreshwar Pandit, he later got the opportunity to fall at the feet of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and beg for forgiveness when He came to Nawadwip after having taken sanyas. Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu then forgave him and also instructed him to beg forgiveness from Srivas Pandit, who mercifully forgave him and embraced him with great affection.

Having received the mercy of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and his associates, Devananda Pandit became an exalted devotee of the Lord, a dear associate of Gaurahari and understood the true purport of the Srimad Bhagawatam.

One must be very careful to not mistakenly think Devananda Pandit to be an ordinary offender, as he is actually an eternal associate of the Lord and was simply performing pastimes in accordance with the desire of the Lord.  We therefore pray for his mercy on this auspicious occasion of his disappearance on Saphala Ekadashi in the month of Pausha, so that we may be able to realize the exalted position of vaishnavas and give them all respect, thus pleasing the Lord and receiving his mercy.