The father of Srinivas was Chaitanya
Das. He had another name at first. On a particular occasion he went to
Katwa planning to take sannyasa. When he arrived at Katwa he saw a barber
who was just about to cut off the hair of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. When
Srinivas' father saw this he became so very sad that the only thing he
could say was, "Chaitanya! Chaitanya!" So from that time on
everyone called him Chaitanya Das.
Some time later he married, and one day his wife said: "My dear husband,
I had a dream in which Lord Chaitanya came to me and He told us to have
Chaitanya Das said: "Are you just saying this to have a child, or
His wife said: "I am not lying, honestly, Mahaprabhu came to me in
a dream and told us to have a child."
Chaitanya Das was still not convinced and said: "Mahaprabhu is in
Jagannath Puri, so we will go there and ask Him personally if this is
what He desires."
Chaitanya Das and his dear wife went on their way to meet Sri Chaitanya
Mahaprabhu at Jagannath Puri. When they entered the Dham they saw the
sankirtana (chanting of the Holy Name) taking place in front of the Jagannath
Temple. Mahaprabhu was in the middle, surrounded by many of His followers
and many sannyasis.
But as soon as Mahaprabu saw the couple arrive He made way to welcome
them and invited them to come over to see Him. Everyone wondered: "Who
are these people? Why are they so special and why is Mahaprabhu giving
them special attention?"
Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu spoke with them and said: "Chaitanya Das,
your wife is right. I want you to have a child and I want you to call
the child Srinivas." Both Chaitanya Das and his wife were very, very
happy to receive this order from the Lord.
They stayed in Jagannath Puri for a while and they joined the kirtan of
Mahaprabhu. They were so very happy. After some time though they went
back to Nabadwip, and some time later a beautiful boy was born.
At a very young age Srinivas met Vishnupriya Devi, the wife of Sri Chaitanya
Mahaprabhu, but at that time Mahaprabhu had already disappeared from this
When Srinivas was about four years old he went into the temple room and
he found his father crying and asked: "Father, why are you crying?"
His father said: "I am crying because I have no love for Radha and
Krishna and no love for Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. I am so fallen!"
Then Srinivas started crying as well and said: "Oh father, neither
do I!" When the mother of Srinivas heard them cry in the temple room
she came in and asked why they were both crying and when they told her,
she too started to cry.
Srinivas was about eight or nine years old when a sannyasi came to their
house. He spoke about Krishna (Krishna-katha) and everyone who was there
was very happy and fulfilled. Srinivas' father said to that sannyasi:
"You are a great preacher, is there anything I can do for you or
anything I can give to you?"
The sannyasi then said: "What I desire I cannot tell you, my dear
Chaitanya Das replied: "What do you mean, 'you cannot tell' me? I
am a grhasta (a married man) and it is my vow to treat a sannyasi properly,
so please do not hesitate, tell me please if there is anything special
The sannyasi said: "No! I will not tell you, you would not like what
I would ask of you."
When Chaitanya Das heard this he wanted to please the sannyasi even more
and said to him: "You must tell what it is you want. I will not let
you leave my house until you tell what it is that you desire. Anything
you ask, I will give to you."
In the end the sannyasi told Chaitanya Das what he wanted: "It is
your son, Srinivas, that I want, I want to take him with me."
Chaitanya Das fainted and fell to the floor when he heard the sannyasi's
request. He knew there was no way back!
Their son, Srinivas, the gift they had received from Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu,
had to be returned to his rightful owner.
Srila Gopal Bhatta Goswami,
the diksa guru of Srinivas Acharya
Later on Srinivas dediced to go to
Vrindavan. He was very eager to meet Srila Rupa Goswami there. But when
he arrived there a large group of Vaisnavas was having kirtan. When Srinivas
asked what the special event was, someone said: "Don't you know?
Rupa Goswami has left the world!" Srinivas' heart stopped and he
When he came to, he was in the ashram of Srila Jiva Goswami.
In Vrindavan, Srinivas met Sri Gopal Bhatta Goswami and he became his
disciple. Sri Gopal Bhatta Goswami was Srinivas Acharya's Diksha-Guru
(the Guru he received initiation from).
One day Srinivas had a dream to go to Gadadhar Pandit to learn Srimad-Bhagavatam
from him. Gadadhar Pandit had the same dream. Gadadhar Pandit told Srinivas
to get another copy of the book from Bengal, but when Srinivas returned
however, Gadadhar Pandit had left the planet. Srinivas was heartbroken.
Sri Gadadhar Pandit had promised to teach Srinivas the Bhagavatam, and
simply because he said he would do so, Srinivas became a great teacher
of Srimad Bhagavatam. Such is the power of a great devotee of the Lord!
In the early seventeenth century Srinivas was personally trained by Srila
Jiva Goswami at the Sri Radha Damodar Temple. Srila Jiva Goswami passed
the teachings of the Rupanuga Sampradaya on to him.
Our beloved Sri Chaitanya Saraswat
Math is in the line of the Rupanuga Sampradaya.
Srila Jiva Goswami also trained Shyamananda and Narottama Das Thakur as
well. It was Srila Jiva Goswami who gave Srinivas the title 'Acharya.'
Srila Jiva Goswami, the instructing
Spiritual Master of Srinivas Acharya
Srila Jiva Goswami gave Srinivas
Acharya, Narottama Das Thakur and Shyamananda Prabhu some very holy books
to take along to Bengal. On the way the books were stolen by the King
Birhambir. He thought that there were jewels in the trunks, but instead
there was something much more precious inside; the Holy Scriptures.
Srinivas Acharya, Narottama Das Thakur and Shyamananda Prabhu looked everywhere
for the books. After some time they decided that Srinivas Acharya would
stay behind to continue searching, and Srila Narottama Das Thakur and
Syamanada Prabhu would travel on.
Finally Srinivas Acharya went to the King's house. A Bhagavatam reading
was going on at the time. There Srinivas explained the proper meaning
of the Srimad-Bhagavatam to everyone. The King was very impressed with
Srinivas Acharya and showed him the books. He told him that he was the
one who had stolen the books and, converted by Srinivas, he begged for
initiation at the lotus feet of Srinivas Acharya.
Together with Narottam DasThakur and Shyamananda Prabhu, Srinivas Acharya
preached a lot in the north-eastern part of India.
When the Deities were installed and the first ever Gaura Purnima festival
took place at Kheturigram, Srinivas Acharya was there as well.
Srinivas Acharya married and he was a very great devotee and very knowledgeable.
He always spoke of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. He had a daughter, Hemalata
Thakurani, and she became a Vaisnava Acharya herself.
The Deities at the Sri Radha Damodar Temple in Vrindavan
Acharya ki jaya!
Prepared by Parama Bhakti
Dasi for Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math: