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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > All Scriptures By Acharyas > Jiva Goswami > Madhava Mahotsava > 04 Arrangements for Bathing > The Adhivasa Ceremony

The Adhivasa Ceremony


The women begged each other for duties in performing the adhivasa. Though one usually ignores others in attaining one's own goals, those aspirŽing ioiprema accept dependence on others with similar goals and tastes. Thus, cooperating with each other, they worked together keeping in mind the goal of prema. The presence of Radha at the adhivasa manifested so much auspicious-ness that when Paurnamasi recited the santipatha (prayers of invocation), the eyes of the assembled devotees became more and more dissatisfied. Indra ordered the Maruts to shower flowers in such a way that the ghee lamps would not be disturbed. They enhanced the auspiciousness by dropping heavŽenly flowers like parijata and mandara.


As the clamor of a variety of excellent drums widened everyone's eyes with anticipation, Vrinda-devi offered the coronation garlands to Radha, who graŽciously accepted Her lordship over the forests. The cakora birds of the sakhis' eyes gave up the moon to gaze upon the moon-like face of Radha. And the pupils of their eyes, like jewel lamps, danced here and there.In order to remove all obstacles in the path of Radha, Paurnamasi continuŽously chanted vedic and tantric mantras. Due to extreme joy, however, she became bewildered and could not perform the remedial measures for counŽteracting faults in the ceremony. Paurnamasi then offered arghya to worship Radha, whose beauty causes trembling in the body. This solidified the auspiŽcious nature of the festival. "As the white moon, which worships Your toeŽnails, cannot stand in the same place as Your face, then let this black musk from the navel of the deer mark Your forehead instead." Thinking in this way, Paurnamasi anointed Radha's forehead with musk.


Then the elders decorated the fragrant body of Radha with many aromatic substances and auspicious herbs as a protective kavaca (talisman). Singing in high voices, they performed raksa bandhana (tying a thread around Radha's wrist) using turmeric and oiled tips of durva grass tied in cloth.Vrindavana, famous everywhere as the kingdom of Krishna, the sacred place of Radha and Krishna's conjugal love, and the most beautiful place in the universe, was shining with fruit-laden trees bearing fragrant flowers, and filled with the sweet twittering of colorful birds. Like the beauty of Vrindavana, today Radha has attained lordship of Vrindavana by Krishna's will, and thereby achieved greater beauty than Uma, Laksmi or any other woman. The most exquisite scents, flowers, the eight herbs oimahansadhi, and the mantras of the brahmanas were employed in the purification rites of Shri Radha.


Radha's fingers, shining at the end of Her hands, became even more beauŽtiful when the threads were tied on Her wrist. It seemed as if Cupid had combined all five of his arrows in one to quickly conquer Murari. Radha's beauty spread in all directions as She sat on the adhivasa platform, holding a mirror, kusa grass, and other auspicious items in Her lotus hands that charmed the eyes of everyone in the universe.Following the local custom, the women, enlivened by the adhivasa festiŽval, gleefully sprinkled each other with butter, yogurt and other substances. But because of their ecstasy they could not do more than this. Some playful gopis threw ghee, yogurt, and fragrant substances soaked in turmeric water in all directions. Some gopis threw these substances in the eyes of others and then ran away. The happiness they experienced at that time is not astonishing for the occasion.Jatila let out a terrifying scream after some bold sakhis cleverly lured her and doused her with ghee and yogurt. Seeing that Kutila (Her sister in-law) was present, Radha bent Her head and smiled slightly in response to the laughter of Her sakhis.With Paurnamasi's permission and unseen by others, Radha took some remnants of the sacrifice. Observing the proper rules, the gopis placed Radha in front and went to worship the abhiseka arena.