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CC Madhya 15.99

Text

guṇarāja-khāṅna kaila śrī-kṛṣṇa-vijaya
tāhāṅ eka-vākya tāṅra āche premamaya

Synonyms

guṇarāja-khāṅna — Guṇarāja Khān; kaila — compiled; śrī-kṛṣṇa-vijaya — the book named Śrī Kṛṣṇa-vijaya; tāhāṅ — there; eka-vākya — one sentence; tāṅra — of it; āche — is; prema-maya — full of love of Kṛṣṇa.

Translation

Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu then said, “Guṇarāja Khān of Kulīna-grāma compiled a book named Śrī Kṛṣṇa-vijaya, in which there is a sentence revealing the author’s ecstatic love of Kṛṣṇa.”

Purport

Śrī Kṛṣṇa-vijaya is a book of poems considered to be the first poetry book written in Bengal. Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura states that this book was begun in the year 1395 Śakābda (A.D. 1473). After seven years, it was completed (in 1402 Śakābda). This book was written in plain language, and even half-educated Bengalis and women could read it very clearly. Even ordinary men with little knowledge of the alphabet could read this book and understand it. Its language is not very ornamental, and sometimes the poetry is not very sweet to hear. Although according to the sonnet style each line should contain fourteen syllables, there are sometimes sixteen, twelve or thirteen syllables in his verse. Many words used in those days could be understood only by local inhabitants, yet this book is still so popular that no bookstore is complete without it. It is very valuable for those who are interested in advancing in Kṛṣṇa consciousness.

Śrī Guṇarāja Khān was one of the topmost Vaiṣṇavas, and he translated the Tenth and Eleventh Cantos of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam for the understanding of the common man. The book Śrī Kṛṣṇa-vijaya was highly praised by Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, and it is very valuable for all Vaiṣṇavas. Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura gives a genealogical table and family history of Guṇarāja Khān. When a Bengali emperor named Ādiśūra first came from Kānyakubja, or Kānauj, he brought with him five brāhmaṇas and five kāyasthas. Since the king is supposed to be accompanied by his associates, the brāhmaṇas accompanied the King to help him in higher spiritual matters. The kāyasthas were to render other services. In the northern Indian high country, the kāyasthas are accepted as śūdras, but in Bengal the kāyasthas are considered among the higher castes. It is a fact that the kāyasthas came to Bengal from northern India, specifically from Kānyakubja, or Kānauj. Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura says that the kāyasthas who came from Kānyakubja were high-class men. Of them, Daśaratha Vasu was a great personality, and the thirteenth generation of his family included Guṇarāja Khān.

His real name was Mālādhara Vasu, but the title Khān was given to him by the Emperor of Bengal. Thus he became known as Guṇarāja Khān. Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura gives the following genealogical table of Guṇarāja Khān: (1) Daśaratha Vasu; (2) Kuśala; (3) Śubhaśaṅkara; (4) Haṁsa; (5) Śaktirāma (Bāgāṇḍā), Muktirāma (Māinagara) and Alaṅkāra (Baṅgaja); (6) Dāmodara; (7) Anantarāma; (8) Guṇīnāyaka and Vīṇānāyaka. The twelfth generation included Bhagīratha, and the thirteenth Mālādhara Vasu, or Guṇarāja Khān. Śrī Guṇarāja Khān had fourteen sons, of whom the second son, Lakṣmīnātha Vasu, received the title Satyarāja Khān. His son was Śrī Rāmānanda Vasu; therefore Rāmānanda Vasu belonged to the fifteenth generation. Guṇarāja Khān was a very well known and wealthy man. His palace, fort and temples are still existing, and from these we can deduce that the opulence of Guṇarāja Khān was certainly very great. Śrī Guṇarāja Khān never cared for the artificial aristocracy introduced by Ballāl Sena.