Welcome to JaivaDharma.org! 

This is a Vaisnava community based, online and self-paced study course which will assist students to enter deeply into Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura's epic work detailing the eternal and essential nature of all living beings.

This compelling narrative is not a fiction-based philosophical literature as some may believe. Rather, the contents are the transcribed manifestation of the mystic visions of Srila Thakur Bhaktivinode known as samadhi-bhasya and are akin to the mystic trance incantations of Sanjaya in his narration of the battle events on Kurukshetra and his revelation of Srimad Bhagavad Gita. Thus, Jaiva Dharma depicts historically factual interactions among highly developed spiritual personalities with others from cultured Bengali society. These events occurred just several decades after the divine pastimes of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu had concluded, (circa 1600 A.D.) and the momentum of His influence upon the world was still quite palpable; several of His nitya-parikaras (eternal associates) still remaining are prominently present throughout the pages of Jaiva Dharma. The extraordinary exchanges that ensue provide the setting which reveal powerful Gauḍīya Vedantic insights, stemming from the correction and clarification of common Hindu society misconceptions and gradually ascending through the establishment of essential truths and effective practice, toward its esoteric pinnacle of pure relationships with Godhead. Inherent in the storyline are penetrating philosophical questions that are exceedingly high-class in character and eternally relevant to the fundamental meaning and purpose of human existence. The depth of the discussions captivate the reader’s mind, intellect and heart, and provides clarity and direction towards the fulfillment of our quest to establish ourselves in our jaiva-dharma; our soul’s constitutional position and function.



Course Preface by Srila Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaj:

In his Jaiva Dharma, Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura has written everything about the authentic process to become a paramahamsa. Jaiva Dharma is the essence of the Vedas, Upanishads, Srimad Bhagavatam, and the writings of Sri Rupa Gosvami, Sri Ragunatha das Gosvami and our guru-varga. Asta-kaliya-lila is described for those that are advanced, but how does one become qualified to understand it? One must systematically study Jaiva Dharma from beginning to end, starting with the first part where there is a description of the material world, and proceeding through a study of Dasa-mula and all the tattvas.

By following Jaiva Dharma properly, your anarthas will gradually disappear and you will be able to practice bhakti as exemplified by the two disciples, Brajanatha and Vijay Kumara. They practiced first in Nabadwipa and then in Puri, and they were completely conversant with all the teachings of the important literatures by our guru-varga, including Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu and Ujjvala-nilamani. They had realized all the stages of prema: vibhava, anubhava, sattvika, vyabhicari, etc. Thus they received real diksa, and they were blessed with a vision of Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, dancing with Lord Nityananda and all of their associates.

Brajanatha's uncle, Vijay Kumar, was a paramahamsa who had renounced his worldly life and was remembering asta-kaliya-lila on the seashore. As unlimited waves appear one after another on the seashore, so it is in the ocean of rasa. Krsna is that ocean of rasa, and the innumerable waves are the different bhavas (spiritual emotions) experienced by the devotee, such as: bhava, anubhava, sattvika, vyabhicari, uddipana, and alambana.

Anyone can become qualified to understand asta-kaliya-lila by attentively and respectfully hearing Jaiva Dharma. Without this knowledge, one cannot become qualified – but one must start from the beginning. Hearing with honor will help one to develop strong faith in gurudeva and to follow his instructions. We should be eager to do so. Don't jump to the top of the rasa tree; begin from the root. 

Follow the process Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura has given in Jaiva Dharma. Serve your gurudeva; have strong faith in sad-guru and Vaisnavas; and always be in good Vaisnava association.

~Srila Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja
Vienna Sept 19 2002