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Stunned by Separation from Him, the Gopis Eventually Regain Shri Krishna's Association
1. Madhukantha said: Please hear the following songs: O Krishna like a moon shining in Vraja, please see what has happened to us! O Krishna like a moon shining in Vraja, please see what has
happened to us!
2. My dear Krishna, ever since You took Your birth in this land of Vrajabhumi, everything appears to be glorious, and it is as if the goddess of fortune is personally always existing here.*
O Lord, You have abandoned us. What shall we do to bring You back?
(Translator's note: These verses follow the verses of Shrimad-Bhagavatam's Tenth Canto, Chapter 31.)
3. With a glance You eternally eclipse the most exalted many-petalled autumn lotus flower, a lotus flower that is like a great demigod of splendor.
4. Ah! How will we become purified if we must remain far from You. Please grant our request. Please give us the boon that we may always be as if shackled to You.
5. We are all Your maidservants. Why do You kill us with Your glance? Iron weapons are not alone in having the power to kill. You eyes have that power no less than weapons.
6. Gokula and its forests You saved from many fearful dangers. We know that out of love You protect Your devotees. Why, then, do you kill us?
7. O protector of the poor and helpless, the idea that You are Yasoda's son is an idea of this temporary world. In truth Youarer the Supreme Soul, untouched by matter. That You torment
others is a very bitter truth.
8. O master, You are not like others. You do not become angry, for You are the protector of all the worlds. When the demigod Brahma requested, by Your own will You took birth in the
9. O supreme master, please place on our heads Your hand, which holds the hand of Goddess Shri and which frightens the fear personified, the fear of continued birth and death in this world. Please do not refrain from giving Your mercy to us.
10. O hero who removes Vraja's fears, With Your smile You pacify the anger of us women. Please do not punish us. Please show us the effulgent festival of tye glory of Your face.
11. Your feet are rthe goddess of fortune's abode. They defeat the sins and sufferings of this world. They are the abode of great sacredness. Even so, those feet followed the cows and
even danced on the head of a poison-filled snake.
12. You have placed Your feet in many terrible places. Your feet are the abode of peacefulness. They pacify all inauspiciousness. Ah! Why do You not pprotect usby placing Your
feet on our breast, which now burn with flames of separation from You.
13. Your sweetm, playful, splendid, graceful, words, secnted with bliss and pleasing to the ear, have made us thirst to attain You.
14. Great saints praise the nectar of Your words and words about You. Those words are the life of all souls burning in the flames of material life. Those words kill sins. To benefit us fools
and sinners, the saints repeat those words.
15. Your smiling, restless, playful eyes glisten with love. Coming from the forest, Your splendid flute music takes away our very breath.
16. When You go to herd the cows our thoughts become ripped apart as we think how Your feet will become pricked by the pebbles and sharp blades of grass.
17. Ah! Flames and flames burn and burn in Our hearts. Please remember us, Your own poor-hearted people. O lover, please place Your lotus feet over our hearts.
18. Ah! When, during the daytime You wander in the forest, and we are unable to see Your handsome face with its curly locks of hair, we think each moment is long like a kalpa.
19. King Nimi cursed the village of Vraja. Why should he not be rebuked? Why should we gopis not become angry with him?
20. What cheater would reject a host of women who, bound by the shackles of His flute music and tormented by desire spurned their kinsmen and ran to Him to Him in the great ofrest at night?
21. Beloved, having seen Your smiling,loving glances, handsome form, and glorious broad chest, and haviong heard Your playful joking words, we are now bewildered with love for You.
22. At the end of the day, when You allow us to see Your moonlike face surrounded by the darkness of Your curly black hair and marked with the moon'sspots of dust raised by the cows'
hooves, You arouse amorous passion within us.
23. O hero, please give us the nectarof Your lips, nectar that destroys all sorrows, nectar that will restore our lives, nectar tasted by Your flute, which desires nothing else.
24. We dearlyulove You. Whatever You desire, we desire also. How could we disagree with Your desire?
25. Your appearance destroys the sins of Vraja's people, who keep You always in their hearts. We yearn to attain You.Please give us a medicine to cure the sikness that has overtaken our
hearts filled with love for You.
26. In Shrimad-Bhagavatam (10.31.19) it is said: "O dearly beloved! Your lotus feet are so soft we place them gently ohn our breasts, fearing that Your feet will be hurt. Ourlife
rewsts only in You. Our minds, therefore, are filled with anxiety that Your tender feet might be wounded by pebbles as Your roam about on the forest path."*
27. This verse is explained in the following words: We affectionately wish that You place Your feet, feet more soft than the lotus, upon our breasts. We desire this because we
are stunned to think how Your feet may walk on rough places. Why should we not be filled with anxiety when Your feet may be wounded by pebbles as You roam about on the forest path? As we think in this way You at once enter our hearts. We are afraid that our hard hearts will wound Your soft feet. Therefore please place them very gently on our breasts."
28. The gopis' songs gradually became sorrowful laments. This is not surprising. Their powerful thirst to see Krishna increased a hundred times.
29. Hearing and seeing the gopis bitterly weep with glistening tears, Krishna suddenly appeared amongst them dressed in glorious garments.
30. As He was before, in that way Krishna appeared befopre the go;is' eyes. He was wonderfully splendid. The gopis let out a great tumult of "Krishna! Krishna!"
31. Hearing the tumult, the beautiful gopis quickly gathered around Krishna. The gopis were nowfilled with bliss. They had been like rivers beginning to go dry in the long summer when
no rainclouds come, rivers that suddenly encounter a great host of large monsoon cloudsthat shower ample rains. The gopis felt they had been on the verge of death and now their livges were suddenly rescued.
32. The following description is given: Glorious in yellowgarments, smiling flower-garlanded Krishna gently placed flower garlands on the gopis' shoulders. He was like Kamadeva
surrounded by many amorous Ratis.
33. Without shyness, Krishna, surrounded by His gopi-beloveds, went to the riverbank. The restless gopis were like rivers swiftly flowing to the ocean Krishna.
34. The first of these proud gopis is described hy Shri Parasara Muni in these words of the Vishnu Purana: Seeing her beloved, one joyful gopi called out, `Krishna!
Krishna! Krishna!' " The gopi here is named Bhadra.
35. Shrila Sukadeva Gosvami explains: "Another girl approached Krishna. A glorious new lotus flower within its leaves was the offering she held in her folded hands."This gopi is
36. "On some pretext another gopi placed Krishna's feet on her breasts. It was as if she had worshiped Lord Siva for a boon and now her desire was fulfilled." This gopi is Padma
37. "Another gopi took in her folded hands the remnants of betelnuts chewed by Krishna. She considered herself now the object of Krishna'spassionate love." This gopi is Saibya
These gopis are all right-wing (gentle and meek) gopis.
38. "Another gopi took Krishna's sandal-anointed arm and placed it around her neck.In this way she hinted at her eagerness to enjoy pastimes with Him." The gopi here is
Syamala, who is a left-wing (proud and bold) gopi.
39. "With the black bees of her unblinking eyes, another gopi drank the nectar at the lotus floweer of Krishna's face.A metaphor is emplyed here. In truth the gopis' eyes defeat
the black bees and the glory of Krishna's face defeats the nectar of the lotus flower. Thegopi here is Lalita.
40. With closed eyes another shy-hearted gopi gazed at Krishna. Even though she was separated from Him, she saw Him in her heart. This is very wonderful. She became like a yogi, who by meditating meets the Lord in his heart." This gopi is Visakha.
41. "An angry gopi tried to fire arrows from her eyes.Krishna remained unwounded and unmoved. Although those arrows did not wound Krishna, they certaionly troubled Him,. Who can describe the activities of this gopi?" The gopi here is Radha, who is accompanied by Her gopi-friends.
42. "The gopis' faces blossopmed with happiness because of the monsoon-cloud Krishna's arrival. They celebrated a festival of bliss. They felt they had attained their life's goal.
They felt they had been born again." This verse refers to all the gopis.
43. Krishna's form is splendid without peer. No metaphor can do justice to His youthful handsomeness. Although no metaphor does justice to Him, still I have employed metaphors in these verses. I am not at fault. That Krishna is more glorious than all else is simply thr nature of things.
44. Krsbna and the gopis then enjoyed pastimes of passionate amorous glances. Gazing at each other, Krishna and the gopis both became like cakora birds gazing at the moon. As flowers blossom on a vine, their eyes blossomed with happiness.
45. At that festive moment, Vrndavana's splendid Deity, Shri Krishna, as He was blodly enjoying pastimes, walked to the Yamuna's banks, which were playfully touched by restless waves and by lotus breezes travling on the pathways of the air.
46. The glorious Yamuna, its graceful waves like hands, flowed. The fragrant breezes blowing from the lotus flowers' filaments embraced the soft white sands of the riverbank. The
nectar autumn moonlight anointed the riverbank and chased the darkness of night far away. The humming bees delightedly flew amongs the flowers growing on the land and in the water.
47. Staying by the glorious Yamuna, Shri Krishna, His smiling glistening eyes like hundred-petal whiote lotuses, with His own hands anointed with kugkuma the gopis' breasts, dressed the
gopis in fine garments, made them sit in glorious sitting places. and praised them with graceful prayers and songs. In this way He delighted them and drove away their sufferings.
48. I meditate on Shri Krishna, the master of my life. He glistens like sapphires. He is the abode goddess Laksmi yearns to attain. Surrounded by a host of splendid, golden, saintly vraja-gopis, He is glorious. Around Him are hundreds of glorious flower gardens and forest archways. Below Him are the diamond-powder sands of the riverbank. above Him is the glorious parasol that is the moon.
49. Served by Vrnda and a host of Vrndavana maidservants, who with great care btought Him floweer garlands, divine fragrances, sandal paste with camphor, delicious foods,
betelnuts, and other offerings, and enjoying pastimes of joking words with His gopi-beloveds, the glorious dear lover Krishna shone with great splendor. With the doe-eyed gopis, who tried to
conceal their anger, Krishna conversed.
50. To satisfy the gopis, whose hearts were withered with anger at Him for His misdeeds after they had renounced all for His sake, Krishna spoke pleasing and playful words.
51. Gently massaging Krishna's hands, feet, and thighs, carefully concealing the anger in her heart, externally peaceful, amd her eyes and eyebrows smiling, a certain gopi spoke.
52. Some give the following description: With restless eyes and weyebrows, secret sweet smiles, graceful playful words, crooked hearts, external straightforwardness, thenintelligent
gopis affectionately spoke the following riddle to theri submissive beloved, Krishna.
53. "O king of the intelligent, please solve this
riddle. Some persons love only persons who love them. Some
persons do not love others, even if others love them. Some
persopns love everyone, whether these persons love them or not.
Some persons Some persons love needy and helpless persons,
whether such persons love them or not."
54. In His mind understanding the meaning of this riddle, Shri Krishna said: "These four persons are respectively: 1. persons greedy after their owen self-interest, 2. Ungrateful persons, 3. pious persons, and 4. persons who know the highest truths of spiritual life. Or, these persons may also be respectively described as: 1. bewildered fools, 2. persons who are self-satisfied, 3. liberated persons, and 4. merciful persons."
55. Hearing these words, the gopis knitted their eyebrows. With knitted eyebrows they said to Krishna: "First You of following ther path of religion. Then You abandoned us. You
were merciless. Do You not see our anguish?"
56. In this verse the word "celevrly" may be interpreted as sarcasm and in truth may thus mean foolishly". In the same way "the glories of following the path of religion" may be interpreted to mean "the path of irreligion". Thus these two statements mean the opposite of their face value. In this way "cleverness" means folly". "You attracted us" may mean "You
gave us perfection and liberation". In these words the gopis rebuke Krishna for being ungrateful. By abandoning them and by not being able to see theire anguish, Krishna displayed His
57. Understanding t the gopis' words, Krishna defended Himself. He said, "I am not like that. I desire to make you greedy to attain Me, to make you wealthy with the great treasure of love for Me. That is why I arranged your separation from Me. Some people think I wish to create calamities for My devotees. These complaints bring Me great sorrow.
58. "When I abandoned you, you continually yearned to attain Me. With great love you passionately yearned to attain Me. I have not the power to repay you even slightly. Therefore
please be satisfied with your own virtuous glorious deeds.
59. Hearing His pure and glorious words, and understanding that no one is more wise or handsome than Him, the gopis thirstily gazed at Lord Krishna.
60. From the sky the demigods joked, "O Krishna, why do You wish to give delight to the gopis? They gaze at You with crooked eyes and they praise You with crooked words."
61. Glory to the wild elephant of the beautiful-eyebrowed vraja-gopis' pride and anger. Even though He defeated it, the lion Krishna always feared that elephant.
62. Madhukantha concluded his words by saying, "O Radha, Your friend Krishna is gloriously intelligent. His intelligence is anointed with the fragrant oil of supreme skill and understanding. You make no requests of Him. You are silent. Still He earnestly wishes that You be always glorious and prosperous.