Ādi-līlāChapter 10: The Trunk, Branches and Subbranches of the Caitanya Tree

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrī Caitanya Caritāmṛta Ādi 10.7

vande śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanya-

premāmara-taroḥ priyān

śākhā-rūpān bhakta-gaṇān

kṛṣṇa-prema-phala-pradān

SYNONYMS

vandeI offer my obeisances; śrī-kṛṣṇa-caitanyato Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu; prema-amara-taroḥ — of the eternal tree full of love of Godhead; priyān — those who are devotees; śākhā-rūpān — represented as branches; bhakta-gaṇān — all the devotees; kṛṣṇa-prema — of love of Kṛṣṇa; phala — of the fruit; pradān — the givers.

TRANSLATION

I offer my obeisances to all the dear devotees of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, the eternal tree of love of Godhead. I offer my respects to all the branches of the tree, the devotees of the Lord who distribute the fruit of love of Kṛṣṇa.

PURPORT

Śrī Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī sets the example of offering obeisances to all the preacher devotees of Lord Caitanya, without distinction as to higher and lower. Unfortunately, at present there are many foolish so-called devotees of Lord Caitanya who make such distinctions. For example, the title "Prabhupāda" is offered to a spiritual master, especially to a distinguished spiritual master such as Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī Prabhupāda, Śrīla Jīva Gosvāmī Prabhupāda or Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Gosvāmī Prabhupāda. When our disciples similarly wanted to address their spiritual master as Prabhupāda, some foolish people became envious. Not considering the propaganda work of the Hare Kṛṣṇa movement, simply because these disciples addressed their spiritual master as Prabhupāda they became so envious that they formed a faction along with other such envious persons just to minimize the value of the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. To chastise such fools, Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī very frankly says, keha karibāre nāre jyeṣṭha-laghu-krama. Anyone who is a bona fide preacher of the cult of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu must be respectful to the real devotees of Lord Caitanya; one should not be envious, considering one preacher to be very great and another to be very lowly. This is a material distinction and has no place on the platform of spiritual activities. Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī therefore offers equal respect to all the preachers of the cult of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, who are compared to the branches of the tree. ISKCON is one of these branches, and it should therefore be respected by all sincere devotees of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu.

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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda, Founder Ācārya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness