About the Book
Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa was written by
a disciple of Jiva Gosvami.
Bhakti-rasamrta-sasa covers the Poetical theory which
is not found in Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu and follows
the theory in Visvanatha Kaviraja’s
Visvanatha Kaviraja’s Sahityadarpana and
other important treatises on Sanskrit poetics mostly follow kavya-prakasa.
In their commentaries on Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu and
on Ujjvalanilamani, Jiva Gosvami and Visvanatha Cakravarti quote from Kavya-prakasa
and Sahitya-darpana. The Gosamis
attentively studied those two books. In addition, several verses in Padyavali are sourced in Sahitya-darpana.
rasika or sahrdaya, the
true appreciator of poetry, must be, according to the conception of the
Sanskrit therists, not only well read wise, and
initiated into the intricacies of theoretic requirements, but also possessed of
fine instincts of aesthetic enjoyment,” (Dr. Sushil
Kumar De, History of Sanskrit Poetics)
Bhakti-rassamrta-sesa is so called
because it is the remainder of the nectar of bhakti-rasa
(Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu). In other words, it is what
needs to be added to the nectar theory of bhakti-rasa.
The nectar theory of bhakti-rasa.
The aspects of poetic theory which are not covered in Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu,
Ujjvalanilamani and Nataka-candrika
are in Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa. And in the fourth
chapter (4.21-24; 4. 44-51), the author of Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa
included all the verses of Rupa Gosvami’s
Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa, the definition of ornaments and
so on are the same as those in Sahitya-darpana, a
treatise on are the same as those in Sahitya-darpana,
a treations of ornaments and so on are the same as
those in Sahitya-darpana, a treatise on poetics
written by Visvanatha Kaviraja,
an outstanding Vaisnava scholar at the court of King Narasimha of kalinga (Orissa),
sometime between 1300 and 1384 CE. The younger brother of Visvanatha
Kaviraja was the famous Candidasa,
whose songs were relished by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Candidasa wrote a
commentary on kavya-prakasa in 1300 CE. Visvanatha Kaviraja was a devout Vaisnava. At the end of his commentary on kavya-prakasa, he wrote: rama-krsna-carane
mama bhaktir astu, “May I
achieve devotional service to Rama and to Krsna” (kavya-prakasa-darpana)
Gosvamis studied Sahitya-darpana.
It is quoted in Brhad-vaisnava-tosani (10.21.3), in Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu (3.4.78), and in Natakacandrika
(76; 100; 118; 162; 167; 168; 170; 176). Jiva Gosvami refers to it in Durgama-sanga,ani
(2.5.101;4.2.12;4.3.51), in Locanarocani
(5.3;14.114), in Sarva-sarinvadini 11.47-52 of Tattva-sandarbha, and several times in Priti-sandarbha
110.In his commentary on Ujjvalanilamani, Visvanatha Cakravarti quotes Sahitya-darpana three times (Ananda-candrika
5.61;11.6;15.15). A devotee who reads Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa
acquires the same knowledge of Sanskrit poetics that the Gosvamis
had. Although in the original text of Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa
the chapter on the gunas (qualities) is chater seven and thus occurs after the chapter on the ritis (styles), the present writer switched their order
because the styles are based upon the qualities and because Visvanatha
Kaviraja expounds the styles after the gunas.
The Mysterious Author
scholars, such as Haridasa of Navadvipa
(c. 1940) and Haridasa of Vrndavana
(1919-2013), said that author of Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa
is Jiva Gosvami. This
presumption is erroneous for several reasons. For instance, in text 2.31, the
author of Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa changed the first line
of Visvanatha Kaviraja’s
verse and broke the meter, other reasons are pointed out in the Commentary
(4.40; etc.) In truth, the author of Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa
was an anonymous, outstanding Gaudiya Vaisnava Pandita who had
extensive knowledge of Gopala-campu and so on.
readings of Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa are from Haridasa Sastri’s edition (Vrndavana, India, 1982). ???Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa
was first published by Haridas Dasa,
Haribol Kutir, Navadvipa, Bengal, in 1942. It is based on a single
manuscript found in the library of the Radha Damodara temple in Vrndavana. At
the end, the copyist wrote:
Kamyakakhya-vane maghe srimad-damodaralaye
Sake vasu-eka-rtu-vidhau rakayam kuja-vasare
gopi-dhavain gurum natva yatnenatimudanvita
rasamrtasya sesam hi likhitam vrndavane
Kamyaka-akhya-vane-in the forest known as Kamya;
maghhe-in Magha; srimad-damodara-alaye-in the abode of Sriman Damodara; sake-in Saka; vasu-eight [vasus]; eka-one; rtu-six [seasons]; vidhau-one [moon]; rakayam-on the
full moon; kuja-when birds are warbling; vasare-on a day; gopi-dhavam-the gopis’ husband; gurum-to the spiritual master; natva-after
bowing; yatnena-with effort; atimuda-with
intense joy; anvita-endowed; rasa-amrtasya-of
the nectar of rasa; sesam-the remainder; hi-(a verse
filler); likhitam-written; vrndavane-in
Vrndavana, in the abode of Sri Damodara
in Kamyavana, on a day when the birds are warbling,
during the full moon in the month of Magha in Saka 1618 (1696 CE), the remainder of the nectar of rasa (rasamrta-sesa) has been written with great joy after effortfully bowing to the spiritual master, the gopis husband.”
that regard, sometimes an explanation in Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa
is also seen in Baladeva Vidyabhusana’s
Based on this verse, Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa predates Baladeva Vidyabhusan’s works. On
the other hand, in their respective explanations of samsrsti,
reiterated Visvanatha Kaviraja’s
mistake regarding a yamaka (Sahitya-kaumudi
10.246), whereas the author of Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa
corrected Visvanatha’s mistake (4.394).
Definitional Verses (karika),
Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa, the definitions of ornaments
and so on are the same as those in Sahitya-darpana.
The author of Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa rarely made
changes. Moreover, whole karika or a portion of karika is called a sutra. On the right side of each sutra,
the present writer added the number of that sutra in Sahitya-darpana.
Since a definitional verse consists of four lines, those lines are represented
the letters a, b, c,and d
respectively. For the most part, the elaborations on the sutras are the same in
illustrative verses in Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa are taken
from Sahitya-darpana and from Gopala-campu,
Govinda-lilamrta, and Alankara-kaustubha.
Many more examples from the latter three are shown in the Commentary. My
profound respects go to Matsya Avatara
Dasa for his collaboration in the translation of Alankara-kaustubha.
Krsnadasa kaviraja exemplified the literary ornaments in the
eleventh, sisteenth, and seventeenth chapters of Govinda-lilamrta. Vrndavana Cakravarti, the renowned commentator on Govinda-lilamrta,
pointed out the figures of speech in those chapters. According to Haridasa Dasa, Vrndavana was a grand-disciple of Visvanatha
Cakravarti, and his commentary on Govinda-lilamrta
was completed in Vrndavana, in Saka
1701 (1779 CE). Thus Vrndavana Cakravarti
lived after both the author of this book and Baladeva
Vidyabhusana, and his explanations of verses of Govinda-lilamrta and his classification of those verses in
the categories of ornaments follow the same explanations of those verses in Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa and in Sahitya-kaumudi.
the author of Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa replaced some word
in an example of Sahitya-darpana with either Krsna’name, Radha’s name, or the like. A footnote shows the reading in Sahitya-darpana. In so doing the author followed the train
of thought of Caitanya Mahaprabhu,
who read the poetry of Vidyati and Candidasa: Although they wrote on topics of material rasas, He converted those material subject matters into
transcendental ones in His mind and heart. Thuse He
relished their poetry as if it were imbued with the aprastuta-prasamsa
ornament (indirect expression) (4.216).
old-school poetical rhetoricians used the term bhakti
in the sense of “figurative usage” (laksana-vrtti).
The real bhakti is all about that bhakti.
The Lord communicates indirectly: paroksam mama ca priyam, “I as well prefer an indirect mode of expression” (Bhagavatam 11.21.35). Poetics sheds light on the concept
and helps us understand Bhagavatam.
Sabara Svami is the first authority to use the word bhakti in the abovementioned sense. The poets of old
Kavya-sabdo yam gunalankara-samskrtayoh sabdarthayor
vartate, bhaktya tu sabdartha-matra-vacano tra grhyate, “This word poetry
refers to sounds and meanings embellished by literary qualities and ornaments.
The mention of only sound and meaning takes place by figurative usage (bhakti) (rasa is conveyed through them)” (Vamana’s kavyalankara-sutra
upacara-matram tu bhaktih, “Bhakti
(figurative usage) is simply upacara (metaphorical
usage)” (Anandavardhana’s Dhvany-aloka
Kavyaika-rupatvac ca sarasvateye pi kavya-purusa iti bhaktya prayunjate,
“He is the kavya-purusa also in the sense of being Sarasvati’s son: This takes place by figurative usage (bhakti), also because he is the primordial form of poetry”
Ojasi bhaktya ojah-pada-vacye sabdartha-dharma-visese, “By
figurative usage (bhakti), “in ojas”
means “in a specific attribute, expressed by the term ojas,of
sound and meaning”” (Sahitya-darpana 8.9-10), bhaktih seva-gauna-vrttyoh, “Bhakti means “service and “qualitative figurative usage”” (Hema-kosa 2.185).
Abhinavagupta says bhakti, derived from the verbal root bhaj
sevayam (to serve), means “rhat
which is employed, i.e. that which is proclaimed by scholars as being
well-known,” and denotes the concept of similarity and so on. The term bhakta means “it has come from bhakti,”
and is a synonym of “indirect meaning” (laksanika artha). Evam ca sarvatra vyanjake
edition pp. 62-63).
benefit of studying poetry is that all of us develop the propensity to speak
with imager and metaphorical language. Poetry gets our mojo
to understand the world, the materialistic way of thinking needs the assistance
of an educated, intuitive approach because the world is a form of symbolism.
Specific Topics in Each Chapter
Ornaments of Meaning in Alphabetical Order
mysterious author of this book
Karikas and vrttis
technical usage of the term bhakti
differences between Bhakti-rasamrta-sesa and Sahitya-kaumudi
definition of poetry
sentence (vakya), words (sabda,
pada), meanings (artha),and
the modes of meaning (vrtti)
and second-rate poetry
of sound (sabda alankara)
and ornaments of meaning (artha alankara)
literary faults (dosa)
literary qualities (guna)
18 main varieties of dhvani
broad categories of ornaments of meaning
taste of Caitanya-caritamrta Maha-kavya
Children’s Books (39)
Brahma Sutras (85)
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