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Rama and Beautiful Syama

Nasir Mamud

Aside from Mahaprabhus famous associate Srila Haridas Thakur, within the history of Chaitanya Vaishnavism there is record of a number of persons originally coming from Muslim backgrounds who later either adopted the Gaudiya Vaishnava faith or at least became strongly influenced by Vaishnava religion and literature. The Bengali scholar Vraja-sundara Sanyal published a collection of songs composed by Islamic Vaishnava poets, named Musalmn Vaiava Kavi. Therein he includes works from over forty different Muslim Vaiava poets, including the Oriya poet Salabeg, Saiyad Martuja from Bengals Murshidabad District, Nasir Mamud, and Shah Akbar, who composed poems in glorification of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Pada-kalpa-taru is a famous Gauya Vaiava songbook compiled in the 1850s by Gokulananda Sen under the pen name Vaishnava Das. It includes the following beautiful song written in brajabuli language by Nasir Mamud: Refrain: calata rama sundara yma pcan kcani vetra veu mural-khural gna ri Balaram and beautiful Shyama Krishna are moving along holding rods for driving the cows, ropes for binding them, canes, and the flute from which issues sweet notes.

priya rdma sudma meli tarai-tanay-tre keli dhabal al o ri o ri phukari calata kna ri Krishna calls out, O dear Sridama! O Sudama! Come let us play together on the bank of the daughter of Tarani (the Yamuna). As he walks, Krishna calls out for his pet cows, Dhabali! Shyamali! Come along. bayase kiora mohana bhti vada indu jalada-kti cru-candri guj-hra vadane madana-bhna ri

Young is his age; charming is his beauty. His face is a veritable moon, and his complexion is like that of a dark cloud. He is decorated with a peacock feather on his head and a necklace of guja seeds. His face appears like that of the god of love. gama-nigama-veda-sra llya karata goha-bihra nasira-mmuda karata a carae araa dna ri Although he is the essence or the only deity worshipped in the gamas, nigamas and Vedas, he is relishing the pastime of herding the cows. Nasir Mamud clings to the hope that he may give him refuge at his lotus feet.

From Sri Krishna Kathamrita Bindu issue 28. Gopal Jiu Publications. For a free subscription to Sri Krishna Kathamrita Bindu e-magazine write to: minimag@gopaljiu.org or visit: www.gopaljiu.org