By Narayana Goswami Maharaj
A Treasury of Holy Days gives priceless accounts of the lives, character and precepts of exalted souls wholly dedi cated to the path of bhakti (devotion) to the Supreme Lord and also of two of the Lord’s manifestations who also embody that dedication. By spiritual principle, narrations about transcen- dental personalities serve to increase our relationship with them, and we are drawn towards transcendence.
In this book, penetrating Insights into Gaudiya Vaisnava philosophy are inter- woven with fascinating and relevant historical anecdotes. The last three chapters describe the marvelous mani- festation of bhakti.
He met his beloved gurudeva, Šrila Bhakti Prajñāna Keśava Gosvami Mahārāja, in 1947 and unreservedly served him throughout his life. He travelled the world for fourteen years from 1996, imparting Gaudiya Vaisnava teachings. In 2010, he left this world. having instilled in his followers a taste for hearing and speaking the Vaisnavas’ glories.
In the late 1980s and early 90s, years before Śrī Śrīmad Bhaktivedanta Nārāyaṇa Mahārāja (Srila Gurudeva) journeyed from India to Western shores in 1996, Śrīman Prema-viläsa prabhu, having familiarized himself sufficiently with the Hindi language, recorded and translated selected classes by Śrila Gurudeva that he was confident would be appreciated by bhakti practitioners in English speaking countries. He gradually published these translations as four books. Nectar of Govinda-lila was the first of these titles and was soon followed by Going Beyond Vaikuntha, Bhakti-rasayana and Sri Prabandhavali, reprinted now for the 3 time as A Treasury of Holy Days.
Prema-vilåsa prabhu’s capacity to not only precisely represent Śrila Gurudeva’s clear and insightful delivery of Gaudiya philosophy but also to capture in English the sweetness and charm of his Hindi lecture has made these four titles dearly loved by all levels of Vaiṣṇavas.
Śrila Gurudeva would remind us that our advancement in bhakti depends on the mercy of the Vaisnavas. Like others in the line of Śrila Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada, he would therefore acquaint us with prominent personalities in the Gaudiya line on their appearance or disappearance days, sharing unique insights into their life and precepts. He did so to fortify and nourish our aspiration to practice pure bhakti as they do.
The classes in A Treasury of Holy Days were spoken in 1989 and 1991 at Sri Keśavaji Gaudiya Matha in Mathura and Sri Rūpa-Sanatana Gaudiya Matha in Vṛndavana. The chapter on Srila Bhaktivedanta Svāmī Prabhupada was compiled from three separate lectures spoken in English in the early 90s.