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Author Topic: SAINT KRISHNADAYARNAVA By Dr. S. D. Parchure M. A.. Ph. D. (Continued from the A  (Read 2803 times)

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Offline JR

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On seeing the great devastation at Ambejogai, Saint Krishna-dayarnava was no doubt shocked like other ordinary persons; but he had a good philosophical background. He knew that after all the human life was transitory. He therefore, composed himself and decided to go to Pimpalner. At the time of his return to Ambejogai the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb had just expired (Shaka 1629). His generals however had not still left Deccan. His army was about to go back to Delhi and hence though unrest and anarchy had not stopped altogether, still it had sub¬sided to a great extent. Saint Krishnadayarnava therefore, had some peaceful time at Pimpalner.

Saint Krishnadayarnava had a desire to take the vow of fire worship (Agnihotra) and he had sought the permission of his guru for the same; but all things do not take place according to man's wishes. The will of the god is supreme. Hence before he could take the vow, he lost his wife and his plan could not materialize. At the time of the death of his wife, Krishnadayarnava had a son and a daughter. So it was not necessary for him to marry a second time for getting issues; but having a wife was a nece¬ssary condition for a person taking the vow of fire worship. The dilemma of a second marriage, therefore, stood before Krishnadayarnava; but he decided to face it with the blessing of his guru. He, therefore married a second time in Shaka 1633 and took the Agnihotra. As his heart's desire was fulfilled, Krishna¬dayarnava was happy and was spending his days in peace and tranquility.

Saint Krishnadayarnava continued his peaceful family life in this fashion for about six years. He used to be busy with his daily rituals in connection with the worship of the fire; but human life is always full of ups and downs. It never runs smoothly and accordingly a new mishap overtook Krishnadayar¬nava. The signs of leprosy appeared on his body. This disease is such that even today it requires a long time for cure. In those days when the progress of medical science was limited, leprosy might have been in the list of incurable diseases. Hence with the appearance of the signs of leprosy on his body, Krishnadayarnava lost his mental peace, not knowing what to do; but his Guru paci¬fied h m and advised him to await god's orders.

For persons who are staunch believers in god, the help comes from an unknown source. Similarly Krishnadayarnava got a directive from Saint Eknath in the dream. Saint Eknath advi¬sed Krishnadayarnava to write a commentary on the tenth canto of Shrimadbhagawat in order to get rid of the disease. Formerly when Krishnadayarnava was staying at Gaya he had studied Bhagwat with his guru; but at that time he did not have the inspiration to write a book. This time, however, he got a direc¬tive from Saint Eknath and he promptly decided to comply with it. His guru and other saints in the vicinity also supported the resolve of Krishnadayarnava and he took his pen in his hand at the age of fiftyfour in Shaka 1649 to write that commentary. This is an age when people are preparing to lay down their pen because their physical and mental powers are slowly and slowly getting reduced; but according to the directions of Saint Eknath, Krishnadayarnava dedicated the rest of his life for writing the commentary, which was a gigantic work comprising of 42,000 ovees. If we consider the volume and quality of this book, which is famous by the name Hariwarada, then we find that only seven or eight books will reach the level of this book. Geetarnava by Dasopant, commentary of Shri Shivkalyan on the tenth canto of Bhagwat and Bhawarth Ramayan by Saint Eknath may be cited as   a   few   examples   of   books   which can .equal in merit with Krishnadayarnava's Hariwarada.

Shrimadbhagawat is a very popular book among the Maha-rashtrian Saints. A number of them have written commentaries on that book. On comparison of the commentary of Shridhar with that of Hariwarada, we feel that it must be this commen¬tary that was followed closely for his book by Krishnadayarnava. In order to overcome the disease Krishnadayarnava assiduously continued the writing of the book for six to seven years and completed forty nine cantos during this period. On the Gokul Ashtami day in Shaka 1656 the first part of the book was com¬pleted and on that same day Saint Krishnadayarnava also com¬pleted sixty years of his life. This day was also unique in the life of the author, because as per the directions of Saint Eknath in his dream, he was completely cured by this time and all the signs of leprosy disappeared from his body!

Because of the approaching old age, Krishnadayarnava had become diffident. He was therefore, hesitating to start the second part of his book as he felt that he may not be able to complete it; but Shri Shiv Chowdhary, the son of the guru of Krishnada¬yarnava encouraged him in undertaking the work and because of the pressure brought by Shri Chowdhary, Krishnadayarnava commT enced the writing of the second part of the book, one or two months after completing the first part, in the month of Kartik in Shaka 1656. Though Krishnadayarnava started his book because of the pressure from Shri Chowdhary, still his former enthu-siaim had left him. He had become week; but for six long years he dragged on and completed further thirty seven cantoes of the book. He thus completed in all eightysix cantoes and wrote only 23 ovees of the eightyseventh canto when on the fifth day of the bright half of the month of Margasheersha in Shaka 1662 (1740 A. D.) this great saint took Samadhi, at Paithan.

The book of Hariwarada that has come to us has ninety cantoes in all. The last three chapters of the book have been added by Uttam Shloka the worthy disciple of Saint Krishnada-yarnava. This disciple of Saint Krishnadayarnava was doing the writing work of Hariwarada from the beginning and because of his long association of twelve years with this book, he was able to complete it as per the orders of his Guru.
Krishnadayarnava had in all sixteen disciples and they had their Maths at different places all over India. Uttam Shloka was the disciple, who was liked most by his Guru, and his Math is at Umarkhed in Berar. Tirupati, Dwarka, Badrikedar, Haridwar, Kanchi, Audumbar, Mathura, Jagannathpuri, Rameshwar, Beed are some other places where the Maths of the disciples of Saint Krishnadayarnava exist Uttam Shloka has written a seprate book named Prabodhsar in Shaka 1682. This disciple of Krishnadayar¬nava took Samadhi in Shaka 1708 and his Samadhi also can be seen by the side of that of Krishnadayarnava at Paithan Uttam Shloka completed the remaining part of his Guru's book on his 3rd death anniversary in Shaka 1665.

Hariwarada is a book describing the life of Sbri Krishna, the most beloved deity of the author. Saint Krishnadayarnava* in addition to being a devotee of Lord Krishna was a poet, who had the background of vast study of Sanskrit literature. In Marathi we come across commentaries on the tenth canto of Shrimadbhagawat written by several authors, amongst whom Shridhar, Jayaram, Madhavsuta, Bahirajataved, Lolimbraj, Raghunath Shesh, Shivakalyan, Moropant, Arabaji etc. could be mentioned in particular; but on comparison of the commentary of Krishnadayarnava with that of all these authors, we find that Hariwarada stands head and shoulder above them. The other authors, mentioned above, have written their commentaries along with their other works; but that is not the case with Krishnadayarnava. Though he has also done some other casual writing,   still he   wrote Hariwarada  as his   life's   mission and it may be   because of   this fact that   his work has   become superb.

The original Bhagwat is composed in Shloka form. While writing his commentary, Krishnadayarnava has not followed a uniform system. In some places we find that he has written only one "ovee" to explain one Sholka and in one case he has written as many as one hundred and fifteen ovees tc explain the meaning of one Sanskrit Shloka in original. This sort of inequality we find in most of the commentaries written by majority of the Marathi authors. In Dnyaneshwari, for example, we find that Dnyaneshwar also has once written over two hundred ovees to explain one Shloka of the Bhagwadgeeta, while at some places he has written only three to four ovees. It is of course very clear that all Shlokas in the original composition itself are not of equal importance. Hence the variation in the number of ovees in the commentary also takes place according to the Hkei and dislikes of the author.

In Hariwarada Krishnadayarnava has given at several places certain information about his personal life. So we are able to know something about the life of the author from the book, in some cantoes the author has given the date of commencing the commentary and at some places the date of completion also is given; but at some places we find only the time of commencement and at other places we find only the date of completion. Hence we ate able to know the exact time taken in writing a particular canto only in few cases where both the biginning and the end are mentioned.

At the end of each canto, Krishnadayarnava has bowed down to his guru and at that time he has mentioned the whole tradition of his guru as Adinath, Dattatraya, Janardan, Eknath, Chidanand, Swanand and Govind. This practice of mentioning the tradition of gurus was followed by many authors writing Marathi commentaries on Sanskrit books. In the last three cantoes of Hariwarada, however, we find that in addition to the chain mentioned above, there appear two more names viz. Virinchi and Narada. Hence from this different tradition, we can conclude that the author must be a different person from Krisbnadayarnava. Thus from this internal evidence we are able to know that the last three cantoes of the book must have been composed by the disciple of Saint Krishnadayarnava who had this tradition of gurus.

We have already seen before that the guru of Krishnadayar¬nava saw that he studied most of the Sanskrit books that were commonly studied by all in those days. It is therefore, quite natural that we find references from Geeta, Smriti, Puranas, Meemansa etc. in Hariwarada, but it is really a wonder that we also come across several references from medical books like Charaka and Sushruta, from books on Music like Sangeetratnakar and even from books on Astronomy. Hence we have to conclude that the author had a close contact with all these books. Because Krishnadayarnava suffered from leprosy, it appears that along with religious and philosophical books, he also studied closely the books on medicine in order to find out a remedy for his disease and hence he was able to quote from these books.

Krishnadayarnava has not merely presented in his books a translation of the original Sanskrit Shlokas. While commenting on the Shlokas, he has alio given his ideas about welcoming the guest, precautions to be taken in our food as well as entertainment, how to score a victory over our internal enemies, how to repay the three debts which every human being is born with and such other matters which are useful for a person to lead a decent and honourable life. Like iaint Ramdas, Krishnadayarnava also has given lot of general knowledge to his readers, which would help them to enrich their life and make if fruitful and successful.

During the course of discussion   of the Sanskrit  Shlokas of Bhagwat, Saint Krishnadayarnava has given a number of instru¬ctions to his readers. In one place for example he writes that a man should not thrash his wife too much. He may punish her a little occasionally. He further instructs that-if secrets are to he told, then they also should not be given out freely. Secrets should be told with some reservation. As regards entertainment, he advises that a married person should occasionally take his wife along with him for a stroll after decorating her with good clo¬thes and ornaments. He further warns the married man that he should keep restraint on his behaviour and that if there are any disruptions in the family, the whole blame of that will fall on the head of the family and none else. It will thus be seen that the idea underlying the writing of Hariwarada was not merely to explain in Marathi the Sanskrit shlokas of Bhagwat, but to bring out people, who were learned, well versed in the knowledge of behaving well in the worldly life and who would also be good and staunch devotees of Lord Krishna.

This great Saint Krishnadayarnava thus not only spread the devotion to Lord Krishna in his life, but also arranged to keep the continuity of the same after him by sending his sixteen dis¬ciples into different directions all over India, where they establi¬shed their Maths for the spread of the teaching of their guru. Though this saint had to spend his early life in days of unrest, still he spent his last thirty years in the time of the" first two Peshwas, at ease and spent those years in spreading the devotion to god and making a substantial addition to the Marathi literature by his voluminious book Hariwarada dedicated to explaining a part of the life of lord Krishna.

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