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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > All Scriptures By Acharyas > Jiva Goswami > Madhava Mahotsava > 07 Bathing Ceremony > Arrival of the Gandharvas

Arrival of the Gandharvas


The Gandharva girls, who were expert singers and friends of Candrakanti, arrived at the festival. Paurnamasi ordered them to sing about the pastimes of Radha and Krishna and depict them with clever expressions. Seeing Candrakanti in Radha's body, the Gandharva girls became happy. Compos¬ing new songs, they sang high and low notes for the pleasure of Radha and the assembly. They sang, "She is the source of our dear friend Candrakanti. He is the master of Candrakanti, who attained Him by austerities. He is performing Her abhiseka. O tears! Do not suddenly cover our eyes and choke our throats. The two are one in sweetness with their smiles and glances, good qualities, continuous pastimes in Vrindavana, and with Radha's lordship over Krishna. All are present here. Though waves arise in the ocean by the raging wind, the turbulence in the ocean of rasa in Radha's heart can neither be calmed or aggravated by the instructions of the sakhis."


Having full knowledge of all the scriptures, Paurnamasi acted as the acarya. Chaya and the daughters of Garga were chosen to perform the activities at the correct moment. The Devas, the lords of the planets who serve Krishna by bringing every moment into existence, now began living for every moment to witness the sweetness of Radha's abhiseka. Seeing the beauty of Radha's limbs spreading in all directions, everyone embraced in joy. The sakhis performed their particular duties as if they were their life and soul. Though the inhabitants of Gokula ignored the beauty of thousand-eyed Indra. they all desired to have Indra's thousand eyes to witness the joyful abhiseka more and more. Today are Krishna's goose bumps showing the mys¬tic art of entering another's body? Just see how first they appear on Syamasundara's body, and then enter Radha's body with great force.I'he forests of V raj a flow with rasa. Even Laksmi Herself intensely desires to live in these creeper-filled groves. Everything in the forest of Vrindavana emits the radiance of Radha's body, for She has kindly bestowed Her luster to all things here.


Earth Bath by the Sakhis


First the sakhis bathed Radha with water, and then they bathed Her with eight types of earth (from a riverbank, dug by a wild pig's tusk, dug by a bull's horn, from a doorway, from an anthill, from the ocean, from a temple and from the Ganga). The water and earth were permeated with the fragrance of the lotus feet of Hari, who wanders everywhere. That sweet fragrance spread in every direction. By thepancagavya bath (cow urine, dung, milk, ghee, yogurt) Radha, full of desire, stole the five knowledge-gathering senses of the sakliis. Did Radha also release five arrows of love in the heart of Murari? Starting from the east and ending in the north, the sakhis held pots made of gold, silver, and sixteen types of earth (the previous eight types plus earth from a king's door, from the juncture of four roads, dug by an elephant's tusk, from both banks of a river, from a cow pen, from the meeting of three pathways, and from a town). After filling them with water, flowers, ghee, milk and yogurt they bathed Radha.


A Rg Veda brahmacari and a Sama Veda brahmacari bathed Radha in honey and kusa water respectively. When the santi mantras were chanted to remove all obstacles, Hari became more eager to meet Radha without any restrictions. O Gandharva friend! Look, while the brahmacaris are chanting mantras, Paurnamasi is holding a pot high in the air. Will Radha now be¬come the ruler with the chanting of the rajasuya mantra?


After sprinkling fragrant kunkuma powders on Radha, they use a golden sahasra dhara (pot with thousand holes to create rain shower effect) to bathe Her one after the other with herbs, scents, seeds, flowers, fruits and jewels, accompanied by mantras from the Yajur Veda. The streams of glistening water falling from the sahasra dhara cannot be compared with anything in the fourteen worlds. While the brahmacaris chanted Rg Veda mantras, Paurnamasi put on a kusa grass ring, soaked her hands mgorocana (yellow pigment derived from cows) and, though blinded with tears of joy, touched the head and throat of Radha.


After completing the preliminary rites, Paurnamasi desired to bathe Radha in pots made of the nine jewels (coral, ruby, pearl, diamond, cat's eye, emer¬ald, yellow sapphire, blue sapphire and gomeda). To make the job easier Paurnamasi divided each of the nine large pots into five smaller pots. People situated at various places held an umbrella, camaras, fans, a jeweled scepter, a mace and other royal insignia in preparation for the first abhiseka.As the conches, kettledrums, and singing roared in the background, the crowds moved back and forth in the hall while restlessly waiting for the abhiseka,