Chaitanya Mahaprabhu taught how to overcome our suffering?

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Chaitanya Mahaprabhu taught how to overcome our suffering?

Most of us do not know how not to suffer. So, Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu came and taught us how to overcome our suffering?

Who does not want freedom from suffering? Is it not true that none of us want to suffer in this world? Have you seen or met anyone who desperately want to become miserable? No sane man would even think of it. But we suffer. Whether we want it or not some unfortunate things happen in our life.

So, is there any way by which we can free ourselves from all suffering?

The answer is yes.

God does not want us to suffer. So, he gave us Vedic scriptures. This transcendental literature teaches us how to live happily in this world. But in spite of that we disregard the teachings of the scriptures. So, the Supreme Lord personally appears in this world to teach us how to lead a pure life so that we attain complete freedom from all suffering.

In this age of Kali Yuga the Supreme Lord appeared as Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and he taught us how to overcome all our suffering. Before discussing further, let us know who Lord Chaitanya is?

Knowing Lord Chaitanya

Lord Chaitanya is the Supreme Lord. He is Lord Krishna and He is Lord Jagannath. So, Vasudeva Gosh while extolling the glories of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu sings, “jei gaura sei kṛṣṇa sei jagannāth.” Lord Chaitanya appeared around 500 years ago in Mayapur.

Bhaktivinoda Thakura elaborately explains it, “Caitanya Mahāprabhu [Lord Chaitanya] was born in Māyāpur, in the town of Nadia, just after sunset on the evening of the 23rd Phālguna, 1407 Śakābda, answering to the 18th of February 1486, of the Christian Era.” Teachings of Lord Caitanya, Prologue by Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura

Chaitanya Mahaprabhu was unhappy when he saw his unfortunate children, you and me, suffering in this world.

Why you & me suffer?

We the people of Kali Yuga are unfortunate. We are unfortunate because we have chosen to be unfortunate. Intentionally, we disregard the teachings of the Vedic scriptures given to us by the Lord. Instead, we like to live independently or rather whimsically. We explore all means to enjoy in this ephemeral material world with our temporary material body and constantly flickering senses. In our pursuit of enjoyment, we fail again and again. In fact, instead of enjoyment we mostly get suffering, but the saddest part is that sometimes we do not even realize that we are suffering.

Even the greatest material accomplishment cannot satiate our heart and is taken away from us at the time of our death. 

Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, our creator, our father, was sorry to see the plight of his children. So, he came.

Most important reason for suffering

We have forgotten our true spiritual identity that we are parts and parcels of the Supreme Lord. We have forgotten that we are spiritual beings and not material beings. And because of this ignorance, we get entangled in this material world. We try our best to gratify our material body and material senses hoping that it will give us joy. We even indulge in sinful activities. Sinful activities mean those actions which are prohibited by the scriptures. Sin causes suffering.

Many times, we become so habituated to commit sinful activities that in spite of knowing that our action is bringing misery we continue committing it. It increases our suffering, we become helpless and slowly hopeless. Everything starts with ignorance, ignorance of not understanding our relationship with the Supreme Lord.

Attaining freedom from never ending suffering

Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu appeared in this age of downfall to deliver us, the unfortunate souls of Kaliyuga, from our never-ending suffering. He gave us the medicine of the holy names of Krishna, the Hare Krishna Mahamantra, which has the potency to give us freedom from all our suffering. He asked everyone to sincerely and attentively chant the Hare Krishna Mahamantra. Chanting the Mahamantra not just frees us from suffering, but it also fills our heart with unlimited bliss.  

Glory of Hare Krishna Mahamantra

Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu extols the glories of the Hare Krishna Mahamantra beautifully in his Siksastakam Prayers, “Glory to the Sri-Krsna-Sankirtana, which cleanses the heart of all the dust accumulated for years and extinguishes the fire of conditional life, of repeated birth and death. This sankirtana movement is the prime benediction for humanity at large because it spreads the rays of the benediction moon.”

Just as sun appears darkness disappears. Similarly, as soon as the holy names of Krishna, appears in our heart by our sincere chanting, our ignorance disappears which is the root cause of our suffering. When our ignorance starts disappearing, we start understanding that we are souls eternally related to Lord Chaitanya. When this understanding dawns upon us, we start putting our best efforts to re-establish our relationship with the Lord.

With determination we try not to indulge in any sinful activities. Slowly because of the mercy of the holy name, our heart gets purified of all sinful desires and proclivities. And what about our past sins? It gets burnt to ashes. So, just by chanting the names of Krishna, our life becomes all auspicious. We attain love of Krishna and even become qualified to return back to the spiritual world, our original home. This is the greatest gift of Lord Chaitanya to us, to the entire human civilization. 

Srila Rupa Goswami, a great Vaisnava acharya, glorifies Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu in these beautiful words, “I offer my respectful obeisances unto the Supreme Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya, who is more magnanimous than any other avatāra, even Kṛṣṇa Himself, because He is bestowing freely what no one else has ever given — pure love of Kṛṣṇa.” Sri Chaitanya Charitamrita, Madhya Lila 14.16”

Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s greatest gift

Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu gifted us the holy name and taught us that just by chanting these transcendental names of Krishna we can overcome all suffering and can attain Krishna.

So, if we should sincerely take up this process of mantra meditation. Anyone can chant this great mantra – Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Christians, men, women, young, old, Indians, non- Indians. For chanting no qualification is required, we just need to have sincere desire to chant in our heart. We can chant at anytime and at any place.

Although best is to chant early in the morning and at a place where there is no distraction. But if we are not able to chant in the morning then we can chant at any time of the day which is suitable for us. And even if we do not find any quiet place still we can chant at public place quietly without disturbing others.

Whenever and wherever we are chanting we should sincerely try to absorb ourselves in holy name. This will make our life auspicious and as promised by the Supreme Lord, will grant us freedom from all suffering.

In Sri Chaitanya Charitamrita, Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī writes,”In this age of quarrel and hypocrisy, the only means of deliverance is the chanting of the holy names of the Lord. There is no other way. There is no other way. There is no other way.”

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