Yoga of Empathy
Upcoming book by Radhamadhav Das
In today’s times, empathy levels are dropping dramatically. In one study in the USA, the empathic concern of college students declined by 48 percent in the recent 30 years. Many scientists and leaders have expressed that empathy is most likely the key solution to solve the greatest problems of humanity. To nourish empathy, there is a great need of empathy heroes.
What most people don’t know yet is that God Himself descended unto Earth five hundred years ago in an empathic form – as Lord Caitanya – the Avatar of divine empathy. This novel discloses the wonderful insights of the Avatar of divine empathy in a fresh modern context. The introduction is light to digest and appealing for a broad audience. As the book progresses, the cream gradually gets thicker and thicker.
In the beginning of the book, the main character, Radhika, discusses her class’s essay topic of empathy with her college friend Shahid. Shahid is fascinated to learn from Radhika that God Himself delights in empathy and teaches empathy to one and all. Radhika explains to Shahid how Lord Caitanya is the empathic Lord – the Supreme Lord Krishna who is experiencing the mood of His greatest devotee Radharani through empathy with Her, thus fulfilling His innermost desires.
Shahid then asks Radhika a deep question:
“So when Krishna is finally completely absorbed in empathy with Radharani as Sri Caitanya and His innermost desires are fulfilled, what is His realization? What fresh perspective does He experience when He finally tastes His own sweetness and the exalted love of Radharani?
Radhika becomes stunned. “What an amazing question!”, she tells Shahid. She promises him to find the answer in Mayapur, the birth place of Lord Caitanya.
Shahid’s question leads Radhika not only to many wonderful places and devotees in Mayapur and Navadvipa, but further to Puri and finally to Vrindavan. Most of her wonderful encounters and realizations are based on true stories collected by the author from various devotees across the globe. Many devotee characters in the book are real and still living devotees. The books reveals esoteric Gaura-tattva, Krishna-tattva and Radha-tattva through a tapestry of contemporary true stories, thus encouraging the readers by exemplifying how Gaura-lila is ever-continuing in ever-fresh ways within our spiritual communities.
Sri Caitanya before Lord Jagannatha
When Krishna enters empathy with Radharani, He takes on Her mood called “maha-bhava”, which is the most exalted mood of pure devotion. Krishna’s empathic forms are called “maha-bhava-prakasa” or manifestations of Krishna relishing Radha’s maha-bhava. There are two forms of maha-bhava-prakasa: Lord Jagannath and Lord Caitanya.
This book reveals the esoteric correlations of these two most ecstatic forms of the Lord and how Their dhama of Gauravana (Nadia and Puri) relates to the Vrindavan pastimes.
Through the sublime vision of various wonderful devotees, Radhika discovers the Vrindavan within Gauravan and Gauravan within Vrindavan.
Over twelve years of contemplation and research went into this book so far. Some unique contributions will include fresh translations of the crucial parts of the Oriya classic “Mahabhaba Prakasa” by Kanai Kunthia (establishing Jagannatha as maha-bhava prakasa), of the Bengali “Imlitala Mahatmya” (establishing Gaura-lila within Vrindavan) and of the Sanskrit Jagannathastakam (revealing new insights into Jagannatha being maha-bhava prakasa). And of course the sublime visions of various devotees will give wonderful fresh perspectives of Krishna’s amazing journey of empathy with Radharani.
Although the pastimes of Sri Caitanya are famous for bearing the mood of viraha or love of God in separation, it is crucial to know that this viraha serves primarily to nourish and heighten internal union or union in separation. Internal union is mainly empathic union or tadatmika-sambhoga. This book focuses more on internal or empathic union. Empathic union has not been discussed elaborately yet, despite it being extremely revealing and valuable for sadhakas on all levels.
Yoga of Empathy is expected to be released in 2020. Radhamadhav Das is a researcher, author and teacher living in Sri Vrindavan in India. For any queries or suggestions you may contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are also looking for patrons to cover costs of research, editing and printing. Even small support like a pre-order will help.