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In all respects, Radha and Candravall are the best of all the gopis. Both of them have a group of followers numbering millions of doeeyed gopis. On the shore of the Yamuna, Krsna enjoyed the rasa dance with these two and many hundreds of millions of other gopls. This rasa dance is very famous.Among the gopls of Vrndavana, Srlmati RadharanI and another gopl are considered chief. However, when we compare the gopls, it appears that Srlmati RadharanI is most important because Her real feature expresses the highest ecstasy of love. The ecstasy of love experienced by the other gopls cannot be compared to that of Srlmati RadharanI.Srlmati RadharanI is glorified in all Vedic literatures. In the Gopala-tapani Upanisad, Uttarakhanda, She is addressed by the name Gandharva. In the Rgvedaparisista, She is addressed by the name Radha and described as the companion of Madhava. In the Padma Purana, Devarsi Narada narrates Her glories: Just as Srlmati RadharanI is dear to Lord Visnu, so Her lake, Radhakunda, is also dear to Him. Of all the gopls, Srlmati RadharanI is the most dear to Lord Visnu.Srlmati RadharanI is Lord Krsna's hladinl-sakti (pleasure potency), the best of all His potencies. She is the form of ecstatic love for Lord Krsna. All this is described in the Tantras. She wears sixteen kinds of ornaments and twelve kinds of ornaments."Krsna to RadharanI: My dear RadharanI, Your curling locks of hair; wide, restless eyes; firm breasts, slender waist, shyly bowed head, creeper-like arms, and jewel-like fingernails are all exquisitely beautiful. The jubilant festival of Your beauty makes all the three worlds tremble with transcendental bliss.
Srlmati Radharanl's sixteen ornaments are described as follow: (1) Srlmati RadharanI is nicely bathed (2) The tip of Her nose is decorated with a glittering jewel (3) She wears exquisite blue garments (4) She wears a charming belt (5) Her braids are nicely tied (6) She wears beautiful earrings (7) Her transcendental body is anointed with fragrant sandalwood paste (8) Her hair is decorated with flowers (9) She wears a flower garland (10) She holds a lotus flower in Her hand (11) She chews betel nuts (12) Her chin is decorated with bunches of flowers drawn with many musk dots (13) Her eyes are attractively anointed with black mascara (14)Her limbs are decorated with colorful designs and pictures (15)Her feet are splendidly decorated with red lac (16) She wears graceful tilaka. These are the sixteen decorations on the transcendental form of Srlmati RadharanI.
The twelve ornaments of Srlmati RadharanI are as follow: Srlmati RadharanI wears the following ornaments, all fashioned from gold: (1) a splendid jeweled crown (2) earrings (3) a belt (4) a niska (5) a pair of cakri-salakas (6) bracelets (7) a kantha-bhusa (8) finger rings (9) jeweled necklaces that look like strings of stars (10) armlets (11) millions of jeweled ankle bells (12) splendid toe rings. These ornaments decorating Srlmati Radharanl's transcendental form appear like a great host of shining suns.Srlmati Radharanl's twenty-five chief transcendental qualities are: (1) She is very sweet (2) She is always freshly youthful (3) Her eyes are restless (4) She smiles brightly (5) She has beautiful, auspicious lines (6) She makes Krsna happy with Her bodily aroma (7) She is very expert in singing (8) Her speech is charming (9) She is very expert in joking and speaking pleasantly (10) She is very humble and meek (11) She is always full of mercy (12) She is cunning (13) She is expert in executing Her duties (14) She is shy (15)She is always respectful (16) She is always calm (17) She is always grave (18) She is expert at enjoying life (19) She is situated at the topmost level of ecstatic love (20) She is a reservoir of loving affairs in Gokula (21) She is the most famous of submissive devotees (22) She is very affectionate to elderly people (23) She is very submissive to the love of Her friends (24) She is the chief gopl (25) She always keeps Krsna under Her control. In short, Srimati RadharanI possesses unlimited transcendental qualities of form, mind, and wordsjust as Krsna does.
In this way, four kinds of transcendental qualities are described as being present in Srimati RadharanI, the queen of Vrndavana. In this explanation, the word madhurya means "beautiful," navyam means "the middle of adolescence," saubhagya-rekha means "the auspicious markings of a crescent-moon and other figures on Srimati RadharanI's lotus feet and the other parts of Her body," maryada means "never wavering from the path of saintliness," lajja and siia mean "shyness and good character," and chairya means "the ability to tolerate suffering." These transcendental qualities are all manifested in Srimati RadharanI and they may be clearly seen in Her. Their fullest expression cannot be seen in anyone else.
(Sweetness): Srimati Radharanl's sweetness is described in the following statement, where PaurnamasI says: The beauty of Radharanl's eyes forcibly devours the beauty of a newly grown blue lotus flower, and the beauty of Her face surpasses that of an entire forest of fully blossomed lotuses. Her bodily luster seems to place even gold in a painful situation. Thus, the wonderful, unprecedented beauty of RadharanI is awakening in Vrndavana.
(Fresh vouthfulness): The gopl messengers says to RadharanI: O RadharanI of slender waist, You are now well equipped for amorous battle. Your hips are Your war chariot, Your breasts are two Sudarsana cakras, Your eyebrows are two opulent bows, and Your eyes are two swift arrows. Cupid has now placed Krsna, the master of the surabhi cows, as the general of the opposing army. General Krsna is now fighting on the battlefield of Your body. Even though You were so confident of victory, He has soundly defeated You and He is now plundering the regal opulence of Your transcendental body. He is carrying off Your wealth as the victor's spoils.
(Restless eyes): Krsna to RadharanI: My dear moon-faced RadharanI, has the lightning flash learned from Your sidelong glance the art of moving swiftly, or has Your sidelong glance learned this from the lightning flash? I think that Your sidelong glance must be the teacher and the lightning flash is its student. Your glance is so swift that it has even captured My quickly moving mind.
(Brightly smiling): Visakha says to RadharanI: Now that He has seen on the moon of Your face the line of Your lips, from which flows the nectar of Your smile, the most handsome cakora bird, Krsna, suddenly flies into the air, excited with transcendental bliss.
(Beautiful, auspicious lines): Madhumangala says to Krsna: O Krsna, O killer of Aghasura, be cheerful! Look! Here are footprints bearing the lines of the earring, creeper, flower, bracelet, and crescent moon. These must be Radharanl's footprints. These footprints proclaim that this is the place where RadharanI is hiding.
(She makes Krsna happy with Her bodily aroma): Turigavidya says to RadharanI: My dear queen of Vrndavana, O beloved of Madhava, do not uselessly try to hide among these blossoming creepers. My friend, the intoxicating fragrance of Your transcendental body will disclose Your hiding place to Krsna, the king of the bumblebees. He will find You, violently capture You, and forcibly drink the nectar of Your lips. Therefore, what is the use of trying to hide from Him?
(Expert in singing): Vrnda-devi says to Radharani: O Radharani, please give a wonderful festival of vocal music in the fifth mode, that attracts all the deer. Do not worry, Your irritable husband will not be able to see Krsna running to find the source of this singing.
(Charming speech): Krsna to Radharanl: O beautiful-faced Radharani, what sweetness is present in the words from Your mouth? This sweetness has filled the cuckoo with despair and made the sweetest nectar completely useless by comparison.
(Expert at joking and speaking pleasantly): Radharani to Krsna: My dear Krsna, are You the teacher of Your flute or is the flute the teacher and You, the student? I cannot tell because You both act in the same way. You both perform no activity other than to steal away the religious principles of respectable young girls.
Radharani to Krsna: O Lord, who makes piety prosper, whose saintliness is very famous, and who has become eternally purified by the auspicious worship of the chaste gopls' breasts, please be kind to Me. I have carefully bathed for the worship of the sun-god. Please don't touch My body now.
(Humble and meek): Nandlmukhi to Krsna: Everyone in Gokula knows how Radharanl's superiors knit their, eyebrows and forbid Her to see You. Although She humbly complies with all their demands, as soon as She sees a single surabhi cow in the evening, She at once leaves Her place and runs to see You.Radharanl to Her gopl friends: In the pastimes of My quarrel with Krsna, I repeatedly offended the Lord and for this reason, 1 have now become famous as Radha. O gopl friends with slender waists, because of the fragrant flower blossoms of mercy given to Me by you gopls, Krsna has again accepted Me. There is no other cause for His accepting Me other than your mercy.
(Full of mercy): Vrnda-devi to Paurnamasi: Seeing a calf, whose mouth was pierced by a sharp straw, Radharanl felt very unhappy. With tears in Her eyes, She at once dressed the calf's wound with red kurikuma.
(Expert): Radharani is the original teacher of the art of drawing pictures with colorful mineral pigments. Her mind is beautifully decorated with expertise in the art of cooking. In the battle of speaking clever, witty words, She bewilders even Krsna, and even Brhaspati, the guru of the demigods. She is the most learned scholar in the science of stringing flower garlands. In reciting poems, She is more expert than the parrots. In the pastimes of gambling, She defeats even the unconquerable Krsna. She is expert at the arts of transcendental amorous pastimes. Her intelligence shines with all varieties of knowledge.
(Cunning): Krsna to Madhumarigala: When Jatila suddenly arrived, Radharani said, "O My friend, My favorite pearl necklace has broken. Let me find the scattered pearls." On this pretext, She was able to dispatch many charming, loving glances to Me from the corner of Her eyes as She pretended to search for the pearls, while Jatila looked on.
(Shy): Radharani addresses Her own shyness in the following words: Although it is very difficult to see Krsna, the prince of Vraja, He has come to this secluded place and He appears to be filled with longings. O friend, shyness, please withdraw now so that I may uncover My face for a moment and send a sidelong glance at Krsna.
(Respectful): Syama: My friend, You look very thin and pale. If the cataki bird of Radharani refuses to eat, She will certainly give up the living condition. Radharani: The cataki bird of Radharani will not accept any nourishment except the nectar rain of the dark cloud of Krsna.
Radharani to Vrndadevi: Even though Vraja's Queen Yasoda is calling Me, I cannot come now. My superiors have forbidden Me to go. It is not auspicious for Me to disrespect their order.An elderly gopl approaches Radharani with a message from Krsna: O Radharani, You have not noticed that tonight is the full moon night in the month of Sravana, a time when all one's desires may be easily fulfilled. Mukunda now desires to shower You with all transcendental nectar. My child, please take this opportunity and consent to meet with Him. This advice I give You is the proper course of action for You to take. After hearing these words, Radharani, the daughter of the sun-god's friend, Vrsabhanu, declined to go to the rendezvous and instead sent the gopl, Citra, in Her place.
(Calm): PaurnamasI to Nandlmukhl: Padma spoke many lies trying to implicate Radharani. Abhimanyu's mother, Jatila, brought a flower garland supposedly given to Radharani by Krsna and later stolen by a monkey. The affectionate child, Saibya, brought a jasmine flower supposedly given to Radharani by Krsna. Hearing all this evidence, Radharanl's husband, Abhimanyu, became furious and he bitterly rebuked his wife. Look! Radharani is very tolerant of all this abuse. She does not reply to Her accusers but simply stands, calm and silent.
(Grave): Rupa-manjarl to her friend: In this midst of this ferocious quarrel, Radharani remained very sober, calm, and cheerful. My friend, this exalted virtue is very rare.
(Expert at enjoying life): Radharani dispatches many darting glances from the corners of Her playfully crooked, glistening eyes. The creepers of Her eyebrows dance happily. Her face is illumined by the moonlight of Her jasmine flower smile. Glittering earrings swing on Her cheeks. Every half word She speaks is an inscrutable, powerful mantra to invoke the presence of Cupid. With all these features, She has enchanted Krsna. With the waves of Her cheerful playfulness, She has swept away His heart.
(Situated at the topmost level of ecstatic love): Radharani cried a great monsoon of tears that doubled the water in the Yamuna and made Her appear like a candrakanta jewel melting in the moonlight. She stuttered, the syllables breaking in Her throat. The hair of Her body stood up, making Her appear like a kadamba tree. The sound of Krsna's flute made Her appear like a plantain tree tossed about in a hurricane.
(The reservoir of loving affairs in Gokula): Queen Yasoda says: The creator, Brahma, must have fashioned Radharani out of transcendental love. Whenever we Vrajavasls see Her, our hearts become filled with love for Her.
(Her fame shines in all the universe): PaurnamasI to Radharani: O beautiful Radharani, the moonlight of Your fame makes the blue lotus flower of this universe blossom with appreciation. Shining on the ear of the queen of the demigods, Saci-devi, it appears like a white jasmine flower. That moonlight makes the vegetation of the bodily hair of Lord Brahma's wife, Savitri, sprout with joy. That moonlight makes the candrakanta jewel earrings of the devotees' ears melt in ecstasy. That moonlight fills the goddess of fortune, Laksml-devi, with terror.
(She is very affectionate to elderly people): Mother Yascda to Radharanl: You are not Kirtida's daughter. You are my daughter. What I say is true. The sight if Your face keeps me alive. When I look into Your face, I see the face of my son, Krsna. O Radharanl, why have You suddenly become so embarrassed?
(Very submissive to the love of Her friends): Radharinl in the midst of a violent quarrel with Krsna, speaks the following words to Vrnda-devI: O Vrnda, I am always controlled by the love of My gopl friends. O friend Vrnda, please ask this cowherd prir.ce, Krsna, why He is troubling Me. With great fear, He should at oace flee the homes of respectable girls like Me. Does He not know the power of My friend, Lalita ?
(The chief gopl): Krsna to Radharanl: My dear girl with fascinating eyes, even if I am attacked by many girls with beautiful eyebrows, who are expert archers with their restless, crooked sidelong glances, how can I find happiness for even a moment without you? I cannot. I am just like the sky. Even if the moonlight and all the stars try to illuminate the sky, it never becomes really bright until it is filled with the sunlight. In the same way, it is not possible for Me to become bright with happiness without You. Neither Candravall, Tara, nor their friends can make Me happy without the presence of Radharanl, the beautiful daughter of Maharaja Vrsabhanu.
(She always keeps Krsna under Her control): Krsna says:My dear Radharanl, here are the flowers untouched by bumblebees,the many whole peacock feathers, and the new blossoms, as splendid as the rising sun. I have collected all this according to Your order. I am Your menial servant. Please order Me. What else would You like Me to bring You?Srimati Radharanl's friends with beautiful eyebrows are the best of all the gopls. They are decorated with all transcendental virtues. Their beauty, grace, and charm completely attract Krsna.The gopl friends of Radharanl, the queen of Vrndavana, may be divided into five groups: (1) sakhls (friends) (2) nitya-sakhls (eternal friends) (3) prana-sakhls (friends as dear as life) (4) priya-sakhls (dear friends) and (5) parama-prestha-sakhls (most dear friends). Among the sakhls the most prominent are Kusumika, Vindhya, and Dhanistha. Among the nitya-sakhls, the most prominent are Kasturi and Mani-manjari. Among the prana-sakhls, the most prominent are Sasimukhi, Vasanti, and Lasika. The priya-sakhls have spiritual forms closely resembling that of Radharanl. Most prominent among the priya-sakhls are Kurangaksi, Sumadhya, Madanalasa, Kamala, Madhuri, Manjukesi, Kandarpa-sundari, MadhavT, MalatI, Kamalata, and Sasikala. Among the parama-prestha-sakhls, the most prominent are Lalita, Vis'akha, Citra, Campakalata, Tungavidya, Indulekha, RangadevI, and Sudevi. These eight gopls are the leaders of all the other gopis. In whatever time, place, or circumstance these gopls are placed, their most exalted and intense love for the transcendental divine couple, Sri Sri Radha-Krsna is always very easy to see.