The Jiva Institute of Vaiśnava Studies is happy to announce the publication and availability of the fourth book in the Ṣaṭ Sandarbha series, the Kṛṣṇa Sandarbha. Here we are providing an exclusive preview of this wonderful book by making the part of the introduction available:
This book is truly a work of genius. No other book in or related to its field of study can compare to it. There have been many essays or short treatises written about Kṛṣṇa, but no one else has afforded this subject such a thorough and systematic treatment. Śrī Jīva Gosvāmī traces out Kṛṣṇa’s factual status among all the avatāras of Bhagavān based upon his careful study of Bhāgavata Purāna. Not only does he demonstrate that Kṛṣṇa is the original form of God, Svayaṁ Bhagavān, he goes a step further to establish a hierarchy within Kṛṣṇa’s own multifaceted manifestations. In this respect, he discloses that Kṛṣṇa as a cowherder and lover in Vraja is superior to His manifestation as a royal statesman in Mathurā and Dvārakā. This fact is so abstruse that even among Vaiṣṇavas, there are some who have difficulty in comprehending and accepting it. This precise realization, however, is crucial for the practice of rāgānugā-bhakti, or pure devotion in the wake of natural affection, which is the subject of the next book in this series, Bhakti Sandarbha. Kṛṣṇa Sandarbha is therefore the most important of all the ontological writings in the Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇava School, because it unravels the mystery regarding the Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇava’s worshipable deity, which gives the school its unique identity.
Kṛṣṇa Sandarbha is the fourth book in the series of the Six Sandarbhas. Śrī Jīva Gosvāmī wrote the first three Sandarbhas—Tattva, Bhagavat, and Paramātma—based on the Bhāgavata Purāṇa’s famous “vadanti” verse (SB 1.2.11). In these three books, he elaborated on the key words mentioned in this verse: tattva, brahma, paramātmā, and bhagavān. While treating their own graded thematic subjects, these first three Sandarbhas ultimately serve as an introduction to the fourth volume, Kṛṣṇa Sandarbha, in which Śrī Jīva Gosvāmī ascertains the identity of the original form of Bhagavān. In doing so, he brings to light the true significance of another key phrase from the vadanti verse—namely, that ultimate reality (tattva) is nondual consciousness (advaya-jñāna). Śrī Jīva conclusively establishes that this phrase is a reference to Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the Nondual Personal Absolute replete with His own interiority.
The mind likes to dwell in the past or brood over the future. Senses however work in the present. Therefore, chanting while visualizing the mantra with mental eye, or with open eyes, is a practical means to keep the mind in the present.
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