GURU PARAMPARA OF MAHANAM
Sri Raghunandan Goswami, originating from the linage of Adwaita clan,
was the mentor of Raja Banamali Roy, the king of Taras, Pabna. He
asked Bandhusundar- “Prabhu who is your mentor?” Prabhu
replied, on the trot- “The Daughter of Brishvanu initiated
me by the side of Radhakund.” When asked how Radharani could
be Prabhu’s Guru, particularly when Prabhu is the incarnation
of Supreme Godhead - Bhagwan SriKrishna who is the Jagadguru or
the supreme guru, Acharya Dr. Mahanambrataji explained as follows
to one of his disciples.
It is SHE and only SHE, Radharani, who could be his guru as Lord
Krishna himself also accepts ShriRadha as his guru. He quoted Krishna
saying –“Radhika je Premguru aami shisya nat, Sada ama
nana nritye nachay udbhat” (Chaitanya Charitamrita, Adileela,
4th Parichhed) & “Aama hoitey guni baro jagatey asombhav,
Ekali Radhatey taha kori anubhav” (-do-) meaning thereby that
SriKrishna agrees that He has got to learn about Prem or Divine
Love from Her and under this power of love of ShriRadha, He just
keeps dancing at Her tunes and does just whatever She likes Him
to do (ref. 77th sloka, 8th sarga, Gobinda Leelamrita). SriKrishna
is the Loved One for everybody and being the subject or “Bishay”
of love fails to own it as much as His lovers do, who are the “Ashray”
of love, the greatest of them being ShriRadha. Thus the treasure
of deepest love, an endless ocean of true love, an ever-increasing
embodiment of profound love can only be seen in ShriRadha whom Sri
Krishna accepts as His guru.
Sri Prabhu Jagatbandhu Sundar
Sri Prabhu Jagatbandhu Sundar, the resident worshipped deity of
the Mahanam Sampraday, is a condensed living idol of self-restraint,
harinam and austere –practices.
Like Sri Gour Hari, Prabhu was tall, bright complexioned, having
all the divine traits and always clad in white robes. For the benefit
of ignorant, He revealed his own identity by saying-
“The supreme Godhead and eternally original Sri Govinda
is Sri Sri Krishna and Sri Sri Gouranga. One who is the total unification
and energy of these two Lilas is Sri Sri Haripurush Jagatbandhu.
That is only me - do you understand? -- the Lila combination of
Prabhu Jagatbandhusundar was not a Guru in ordinary sense, he was
Jagadguru, the Sureme Godhead incarnate, Lord Sri Krishna Himself.
He never initiated any body or had given formal Diksha. In fact,
his follower Radhika Gupta who was attached to him from child hood
when became very desirous for a formal Diksha or initiation, He
directed him to Sri Radharaman Charandas Babaji, at that time a
famous Vaisnab of Nawaddwip. This Radhika Gupta later became a very
famous Vaisnabite Saint of India – Ramdas Babaji Maharaj,
the founder of Barahanagar Pathbari, Kolkata. Prabhu uttered –
‘Dikshaguru mantra dey kane, Jagatguru mantra
dey prane’ meaning a formal guru utters sacred
words into the ears of disciple but the Universal guru or the Supreme
Lord inspires one at his heart.
Atul Champati Thakur
Atul Champati. was one of Prabhu Jagadbandhu’s principal companion
in his divine past time more well-known as Mahauddharan Lila. Incidentally,
he was the husband of Kshiroda, daughter of Digambari Debi - Prabhu’s
eldest cousin sister.
Sripad Mahendraji, the founder Acharya of Mahanam Sampraday, while
wandering in Vrindaban at his early life received one of his first
guidance and inspiration towards The New Incarnation of Lord Sri
Hari - Prabhu Jagadbandhu from a mystic touch of Atul Champati Thakur.
In later life, Mahendraji used to consider Atul Champati Thakur
as his Gurudev or mentor.
As already told earlier, Prabhu being Lord Sri Hari Himself, never
formally initiated anyone or had given mantra diksha. But propagation
of Harinam was one the main mission of Prabhu Jagadbandhu and Atul
Champati was his main companion for achieving this mission. By helping
Prabhu to Achieve his mission, he performed the duties of a true
disciple. As told by Prabhu Jagadbandhu Himself –
“Guru avipreta karjya ke Guru- diksha baley”
Meaning fulfilling the intentions of Gurudev or mentor is the true
diksha or the act of becoming a disciple.
Mahendraji - The Founder Acharya of the sect
Sripad Mahendraji, was the most beloved
and intimate associate of Sri Sri Bandhusundar. In the Bengali
year of 1323, he founded ‘the Mahanam sect’ with eight
denunciated brahmachari youth members.
The great incarnation Prabhu Jagatbandhu Sundar, Lila combination
of Sri Nitai-Gour and god for the wretched and downtrodden; became
the resident deity of Mahanam sect. The philosophy of Achintovedaved,
as defined by Sriman Mahaprabhu’s loving goswami- sixtets
along with twatta or ontology of this New Incarnation of Sri Hari,
is the core philosophy of Mahanam sect.
He was well connected to the-then eminent personalities, like
Mahatma Gandhi, Deshbandhu Chittaranjan Das, Netaji Subhash Chandra
Bose, etc. Sripad Mahendraji was the combination of lover, poet,
dearest ascetic of Braja and a man of strong personality. At the
very first sight and introduction he could endear any person,
specially young boys and youths, by his strong and mesmerizing
He prepared in his own hand, the second Acharya of the sect ‘Bhagabad-Gangotri’
Sriman Mahanambrata Brahmachariji who later became a world renowned
Philosopher – Saint. In the language of Dr. Mahanambrata
‘There was no doubt that Sripad Mahendraji was a man from
Braja. Quoted below is a portion from a poem as written by Sripad,
while describing his own Identity:-
“Gokuley Basati, Krishna Pati / Aviri Rupasi Ami ”
In another Poem he described his own self as –
“Lolita-Swafup-Milito-Anga Bandhur Seba Lagi.”
Sripad Mahendraji’s absorbedness in the services to Bandhusundar
– in his Divine-Pastime of Mahauddharan, was equivalent
to Lalita’s services at Braja or Swarup’s services
In the biography of Sripad Mahendraji (Mahendra Lilamrita) Dr.
Mahanambrata Brahmachari has mentioned (towards end of chapter
‘Kripar Dhara’) that Mahendraji directly revealed
to him these three Identities of his.
Mahanambrata Brahmachari is the Principal Acharya of Mahanam Sampraday.
Under his leadership, activities of the Sampradaya really flourished
and overall development took place in Spritual and all other sectors.
The main formulation of worship of the Sampraday (Bhajan Pranali,
including the mantras etc. of the New Incarnation-Lord Bandhusundar)
as it stands today was mainly constructed by him as per inspirations
received from his Gurudev Sripad Mahendraji.
In the biography of Sripad Mahendraji (Mahendra Lilamrita) Dr. Mahanambrata
Brahmachari has mentioned (towards end of chapter ‘Kripar
Dhara’) that Mahendraji directly revealed to him not only
his own identities in Braja, Gour and Bandhu Lila, but also revealed
to him secretly his (Mahanambrataji’s) identities which are
later hinted in many of his poems and also in the dedication page
of Mahendra Lilamrita (wherein he has mentioned himself as Bilas
Manjari) as follows –
Bilas Manjari in Braja Lila, Sri Jiba Goswami in Gour Lila and Mahanambrata
in Bandhu Lila.