sādhanā

Śikṣāṣṭakam or eight instructions of Śri Caitanya

On this occasion of Gaura Purnima, we present Śri Babaji’s translation of Śri Caitanya’s famous Śikśaṣṭakam for the pleasure of our readers.

चेतोदर्पणमार्जनं भवमहादावाग्नि निर्वापणं श्रेयःकैरवचंद्रिकावितरणं विद्यावधूजीवनम्

आनंदाम्बुधिवर्धनं प्रतिपदं पूर्णामृतास्वादनम् सर्वात्मास्नपनं परं विजयते श्रीकृष्णसंकीर्तनम्

ceto-darpaṇa-mārjanaṁ bhava-mahā-dāvāgni-nirvāpaṇaṁ
śreyaḥ-kairava-candrikā-vitaraṇaṁ vidyā-vadhū-jīvanam
ānandāmbudhi-vardhanaṁ prati-padaṁ pūrṇāmṛtāsvādanaṁ
sarvātma-snapanaṁ paraṁ vijayate śrī-kṛṣṇa-saṅkīrtanam

Śrī-kṛṣṇa-saṅkīrtanam is supremely glorious. It cleanses the mirror-like heart of all dust. It extinguishes the terrible forest-fire of material existence. It spreads moon-like rays that make the white lotus of supreme auspiciousness bloom. It is the very life of bride-like wisdom. It increases the ocean of bliss at every moment, and is completely relishable like ambrosia that drenches one’s whole being.

नाम्नामकारि बहुधा निजासर्वशक्तिस्तत्रार्पिता नियमितः स्मरणे न कालः

एतादृशी तव कृपा भगवन ममापि दुर्दैवमिदृशमिहाजनि नानुरागः

nāmnām akāri bahudhā nija-sarva-śaktis
tatrārpitā niyamitaḥ smaraṇe na kālaḥ
etādṛśī tava kṛpā bhagavan mamāpi
durdaivam īdṛśam ihājani nānurāgaḥ

O Bhagavān! You manifest many names, invest all Your potency in each of them, and place no restrictions on accessing them. Despite this kindness, I have no interest in your names. How unfortunate!

तृणादपि सुनीचेन तरोरपि सहिष्णुना

अमानिना मानदेन कीर्तनीयः सदा हरिः

tṛṇād api su-nīcena
taror api sahiṣṇunā
amāninā māna-dena
kīrtanīyaḥ sadā hariḥ

One should always sing the names of Hari while considering oneself to be lower than grass, more tolerant than a tree, not desiring any honor for oneself and being respectful to others.

न धनं न जनं न सुन्दरीं कवितां वा जगदीश कामये

मम जन्मनि जन्मनीश्वरे भवताद्भक्तिरहैतुकी त्वयि

na dhanaṁ na janaṁ na sundarīṁ
kavitāṁ vā jagad-īśa kāmaye
mama janmani janmanīśvare
bhavatād bhaktir ahaitukī tvayi

O Master of the Universe! I do not desire anything for myself: neither wealth, nor followers, nor a beautiful woman, nor poetry. All I desire, birth after birth, is causeless devotion for you, O Master.

अयि नन्दतनुज किंकरं मां विषमे भवाम्बुधौ

कृपया तव पादपंकजस्थितधूली सदृशं विचिन्तय

ayi nanda-tanūja kiṅkaraṁ
patitaṁ māṁ viṣame bhavāmbudhau
kṛpayā tava pāda-paṅkaja-
sthita-dhūlī-sadṛśaṁ vicintaya

O Son of Nanda! I am Your servant, fallen into the terrible ocean of worldliness. Please think of me as a speck of dust at Your lotus feet.

नयनं गलदश्रुधारया वदनं गद्गदरुद्धया गिरा

पुलकैर्निचितं वपुः कदा तव नामग्रहणे भविष्यति

nayanaṁ galad-aśru-dhārayā
vadanaṁ gadgada-ruddhayā girā
pulakair nicitaṁ vapuḥ kadā
tava nāma-grahaṇe bhaviṣyati

When will rivers of tears flow from my eyes, my voice choke up, and the hairs on my body stand on end as I call Your Name?

युगायितं निमेषेण चक्षुषा प्रावृषायितम्

शून्यायितं जगत्सर्वं गोविन्दविरहेण मे

yugāyitaṁ nimeṣeṇa
cakṣuṣā prāvṛṣāyitam
śūnyāyitaṁ jagat sarvaṁ
govinda-viraheṇa me

O Govinda! Without You, a blink of an eye seems to last for an age, tears flow like rain from my eyes, and the whole world seems empty.

आश्लिष्य वा पादरतां पिनष्टु मामदर्शनान् मर्महतां करोतु वा

यथा तथा वा विदधातु लम्पटो मत्प्राणनाथस्तु स एव नापरः

āśliṣya vā pāda-ratāṁ pinaṣṭu mām
adarśanān marma-hatāṁ karotu vā
yathā tathā vā vidadhātu lampaṭo
mat-prāṇa-nāthas tu sa eva nāparaḥ

Embrace me or crush me beneath the feet that I adore, or break my heart by ignoring me altogether. He is a debauchee who can treat me however He likes, but He alone and no one else is the Lord of my heart.

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