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Nisanta Lila (cont) Pastimes at Dawn, Cont'd.
(3:36 a.m. - 6:00 a.m.)
The sakhis, who purchase with millions of hearts only a mere drop of the luster of Radha and Krishna's blissful erotic beauty, allowed their fish-like eyes to enter the latticed windows of the nikunja to play in the flood of Their natural beauty.
Visakha told Lalita, "Sakhi! Look how beautiful the erotic signs on Radha and Krishna's bodies are! Although They are niramsuka (without clothes) They are beautified with much amsuka (spiritual luster). And although They are vihari (enjoyers or without necklaces) They are also atihari (very beautiful). Although They are anangada (without armlets) They are anangada (giving erotic joy to each other). Although They are niranjana (without eyeliner) They are niranjana (very pleasing to each other). Their lipstick was washed away during Their playful absorption and Their playbed was all messed up. Such are the signs of Their enjoyment."
Lalita replied, "Sakhi, last night these Two began their love fight by pulling each other's hair, biting each other's lips and scratching each other with Their nails. The red kunkuma powder on Shri Radhika's breasts colored Acyuta's feet with Her hearts passion, and Krishna carried the passion of Her lotus feet on His head in the form of Her glistening footlac."
In this way, with soft voices, the sakhi's secretly described Radha and Krishna's love affairs to each other. They were immersed in an ocean of bliss, praising their own good fortune. Radha and Krishna's luster (rupa manjari) increased because of the blissful enjoyment of Lalita and the other attracted sakhis. Then, the expert maidservant, Rupa Manjari, appeared and beheld the exquisite beauty of Their love-game. She saw that They looked most charming on Their playbed with Their ornaments scattered here and there, and Their footlac, spots from chewing pan, eyeliner and vermilion washed away by the drops of Their perspiration. One maidservant placed a pillow on Radha and Krishna's bed. One covered Their bodies with fine clothes. Another removed Their drowsiness and the rolling of Their eyes by serving Them a glass of awakening nectar drink.
When the lotus-like eyes in Radha and Krishna's moon-like faces, which were surrounded by honeybee-like locks of hair, began to worship each other, Cupid woke up and quickly fetched his bow. Cupid became angry at being overruled. He pierced Their moon-like faces, which were covered with dark ropes of Their curly locks, with his arrows, making nectar ooze out. Hridevi, the goddess of bashfulness, was sleeping outside of the cottage, but she was startled by the jingling bangles and anklebells of the approaching sakhis. So, she entered Shri Radhika's heart, which caused Her to loosen Her embrace of Shri Krishna.
When Shri Radhika became eager to untangle Her hair from Her nosering and earrings, one maidservant saw this, and giggling said, "O, Loving Couple! The incorporeal Cupid bound You up with the strings of Your mutual passion through Your hair, earrings, and the like. Now he wants to obstruct all these attachments, although You are one soul." Hearing this, fair-faced Radhika became annoyed and said, "O, you maidservants! I know you! Keep quiet!" Despite hearing this, the maidservants kept on giggling, expertly serving Her by untangling the knots themselves.
Another maidservant dampened a very soft and valuable cloth in rosewater and wiped the eyeliner, lipstick, footlac and so on from Radha and Krishna's faces, making them shine like mirrors. One maidservant placed betel leaves in Their mouths. Another one quickly and expertly performed Their mangala arati with a jeweled lamp, as if she were waving around thousands of her hearts. Other maidservants held mirrors before Them, some brought in body ornaments, while another removed Their drops of perspiration by softly fanning Them.
Seeing Krishna's bite marks on Her face as She looked in the mirror, Shri Radhika thought, "Today Madhusudana (the Krishna-honeybee) has drunk all the nectar from My lotus face by biting Me." This made Her very happy, and She could not put the mirror away. Shri Radhika thought, "Today, My nectarean form, which is unrivaled in all the three worlds, and My boundless youthful sweetness have become successful by being most blissfully enjoyed by My dear One!"
While Radhika thought like that, Her lover drank all the nectar of Her sweetness with His eyes. This made Her feel unlimited bliss within, and Shri Krishna's lotus face became the playground of Her beautiful sidelong glances. In an independent mood (svadhina bhartrika) Shri Radhika said, "Womanizer! Have You messed up my dress and ornaments? Why are You so complacent? Straighten everything out before My girlfriends return here and ridicule Me! Pacify Cupid, the god of love, by applying Your cleverness in decorating Me. Put him back into the temples of Our minds by removing the spots of musk and vermilion from my body, now that You've taken him out by covering Me with nail and bite marks."
Krishna replied, "You speak the truth! The worshipable incorporeal Cupid became manifest on the surface of Your body. Let Me worship him with ornaments, fragrances, garments, flowers, garlands and sandalwood pulp." Krishna then softly combed Radhika's hair with a comb handed to Him by the maidservant, Bhanumati. After tidying Her hair, He expertly braided it with a garland of malati flowers. With a new pencil He painted pictures on Radhika's body using musk, sandal and vermilion. It was as if these charming pictures were made by the lines of His passion. He placed beautiful earrings on Radhika's ears, which were handed to Him by Lavanga manjari, and He smeared fresh eyeliner on Her lotus-like eyes. When He hung a beautiful, long necklace around Her, handed to Him by Ruci manjari, Radhika proudly said, "Why do You put My necklace on before smearing My breasts with sandalwood pulp? You don't know how to dress Me!" Krishna proudly replied, "Radhe! I made wonderful pictures on Your breasts, which astonished Visakha and Your other friends, who are very proud of their own skill in drawing pictures."
Then Hari gave a wink to Shri Rupa manjari, Lila manjari and Rati manjari, indicating that they should bring their brushes. When He began to paint Shri Radhika's breasts, the flower-archer, Cupid, aimed his arrows at Him. Hari's hand began to shiver and the lines of the pictures He painted became crooked and were practically washed out. The maidservants thought that clever Krishna was lighting the firewood of Radhika's patience with the fire of lust. Cupid did not think much of Krishna's efforts in ornamenting His beloved and made the pictures fall from their positions, joyfully ornamenting both the Lovers with the scattered fragments of decoration.
The maidservants had the desires of their bloom-like eyes fulfilled with the audience of the Divine Couple in the nikunja, and they prayed that their fulfillment would last for a long time. But, when they saw that Radha and Krishna wanted to enjoy again, they somehow found excuses to leave the kunja. From outside, fixing their eyes on the latticed windows they experienced bliss at every second, but they became morose when they looked to the east where the sun was rising. The restless glances of these sakhi's are always manifested in the hearts of the practicing devotees (sadhaka bhaktas).
Those sakhis, whose affection knew no bounds, entered the kunja cottage, knowing that Radha and Krishna had finished Their loveplay. Seeing this, Shri Radhika at once loosened Herself from Krishna's embrace and got up from bed. She obtained Her maidservants' loyalty by frowning in an exaggerated way, while they all sat around Her. Shri Hari pretended to still be asleep, being thirsty after the nectar of their conversation. Shri Radhika said, "Bho friends. You are most fortunate today to act as My friends. It's very fortunate that you have blessed Me with your audience. Have you come here to purchase Me? O arrogant ones, I am a housewife! You have brought Me here from My house into the forest, forcibly handed Me over to this boy, an expert at destroying the housewives' chastity, and then disappeared. Today you protected the old merit of My piety, on the strength of which I could lie down next to Him all night without having My chastity ravaged. O, friends, now Nidradevi (the goddess of sleep) lives in the eyes of Him with whom I spent the night. He is tired from staying up for many nights, making love with thousands of gopis. In this way, Nidradevi helped Me tremendously!"
Lalita said, "Sakhi, who does not know Your famous chastity, and who does not know about Krishna's celibacy? Even the sruti (the Gopala Tapani Upanishad) praises Krishna as a brahmacari. The eyes of the sakhis are very pleased to see Your spotless association with Him. Krishna is not even touched by the goddess of sleep because He keeps His vow of celibacy! We can truly understand that He associates with You through Cupid."
After Lalita said this, Visakha said, "Sakhi Lalita, I know it all! For the sake of getting happiness, Radha and Krishna gave up Their bodies at the Kamya Kupa at Prayaga (or 'They merged in the sacrifice of Cupid')."
Citra said, "Sakhi, What is this benefit?"
Visakha said, "After bathing in Prayaga, Their virtue was strengthened again, so now They are united again (or 'They engaged Their purified minds in Yoga again'.) Shri Radhika had attained the acyuta yoga siddhi ('infallible mystic perfection' or 'union with Acyuta, Krishna') through vairagya dhuradhara ('carrying the weight of renunciation' or 'having the color from chewing pan removed from her lips by Krishna's kisses'), nairgunya mukta harini ('liberation by transcending the three modes of material nature' or 'having Her pearl necklace broken by Krishna') and niranjanodara drik ('objective transcendental vision' or 'having Her eyeliner wiped away by Krishna'). Krishna took shelter of His subservient Yoganidra ('mystic slumber' or 'feigned sleep') to experience His full atmabhutva ('self-born nature' or 'ecstatic experience'). He is worshipped by transcendentalists for liberation as He sits on His yoga asana (or 'on His bed of flower petals in the kunja') having attained siddhi ('mystic perfection' or 'ecstatic satisfaction'). But, O Sakhis, Radhika's siddhi is greater! There are wonderful moonbeams shining on Her sky-like chest (or 'Her chest is full of nail marks') and mental affliction ('mental distress' or 'erotic agitation")."
As Hari heard this, His body became studded with goose bumps of ecstasy. Vainly trying to control His laughter, He was moistened by perspiration; and smilingly gave up His feigned sleep. Suddenly He got up and showed the sakhis His chest, saying, "Ham Ho! Look at the wonderful (Citra means wonderful or one sakhi) moonbeams (Indulekha means moonbeam or one other sakhi) on My chest, which are the only source of My life and happiness!"
Shri Radhika lowered Her head and giggled, covering Her mouth with Her veil and looking at Krishna with knitted eyebrows. Then She slightly touched Hari's chest with Her lotus-like hand and pointed at the marks there, saying, "O Lover, if these wonderful (Citra) moonbeams (Indulekha) are on your chest, then why did not Lalita and Visakha (unlike Citra and Indulekha) also get a place there, although they are so qualified? They would accept Your nail marks and repay You threefold!"
The sakhis then said to Krishna, "We heard that You spent the whole night fast asleep. Which lady then has made these nail marks on your chest? Shri Radhika is the Queen of all chaste girls, so She could not have given up Her virtue by doing this."
Krishna said, "Yes, friends, the vine of Shri Radhika's piety is very strong. Therefor, She defeated Me in last night's erotic battle, although She's just a weak girl. Look, She dug into My chest with Her nail-weapons!"
The sakhis asked Krishna, "O Gallant One, How did Shri Radhika carve Your chest with Her nails?" Krishna then showed them by biting their lips with His teeth and scratching their breasts with His nails.
Looking in this way at Madhusudana (the Krishna-honeybee), who was intoxicated from drinking the honey of the blooming lotus-faces of the gopis in the forest in the morning, Vrindadevi was immersed in an ocean of bliss; but she trembled out of fear, also. The rays of the fullmoon-like faces of Shri Radhika and the gopis had arisen and the moonlit night was over. So, Vrinda looked to see if Radha and Krishna's love games were over or not, being doubtful at heart. It is said in the Vedas that as much as darkness is dispelled, that much knowlege is revealed, and accordingly the disease of the heart, lust, is destroyed. But, Vrinda thinks the opposite. She thinks that Radha and Krishna's passion increases as the daylight comes. The customs of Vraja are not perceived by the Vedas.
Vrinda saw no other way to break Radha and Krishna's loving fatigue but to engage the old she-monkey Kakkhati in speaking some harsh words to force Them to separate. She thought, "Alas! There's no otther way than this!"
Kakkhati said, "O Krishna! You contaminated these chaste girls with the mud of adultery, and You will not even leave them alone in the morning time! As a reaction to all this, Jatila is now quickly coming here from Vraja.
Simply upon hearing the three syllables Ja-ti-la all the gopis turned pale, and their anxiety made the oceam of their love play diminish to a spoonful. The gopis fearfully said, "O alas, friends! What to do now? How can we secretly return home?" as they stumbled out of the kunja-cottage into the courtyard. "The night, that gave us just a little pleasure, is now over, and the miserable Jatila has come to devour the fruitful vines of our desires and to shower us with the flowers of misery!"
Some sakhis and maidservants then entered the kunja-cottage again to fetch Radha and Krishna's broken flower garlands, Their nectarean food remnants and Their different ornaments, which they ecstaticly divided among themselves.
Radha and Krishna's desires to separate and unite got into a fight and if the first one (the desire to separate) was just slightly defeated, Krishna's arm would beautify Radhika's shoulder. Seeing this, the peacocks perceived Radha and Krishna to be a lightning vine embraced by a raincloud on earth. They happily spread out their feathers, danced and sang 'ke ka.' Tha maidservants had the same illusory vision. While Radha and Krishna thus proceeded to Vraja in Their embrace, They eagerly looked into each other's faces. They also fearfully looked in all directions, thinking, "Somebody's watching us!" At that time, Cupid failed to shoot his darts, because although the lotus flowers in his kingdom bloom up when the sun rises, he became worried and forgot to fix his darts during this sunrise, which afflicted the lotus-like gopis.
The soldier of eagerness was defeated by the soldier of fear when Radha and Krishna reached the outskirts of Vraja, forcibly taking taking away the jewel-like embrace of Krishna's arm around fair-eyed Radhika's shoulder. Fear personified then admonished Radha and Krishna, forbidding Them to even walk on the same path together. Their maidservants had to cry when they saw how pitifully They looked at each other then. Radha and Krishna's moonlike-faces instantly lost their luster from sorrow because of being forced to walk on separate paths, like stars that lose their luster when they come before the moon. Radha and Krishna became sad because of having to separate after having first attained the jewels of each other's hearts. Their pure love guaranteed Their next meeting.
Losing Shri Radhika's company, Krishna went alone to Vraja. At that time, a young girl personifying unlimited pain obstructed Him by embracing Him (Krishna, feeling great pain of separation, could not walk on anymore), and He shed warm tears of sorrow. Shri Radhika's entire body, except Her hair and nails, was studded with blisters of severe separation, and since She was delaying Her return home with a stumbling gate, Her friends took Her along.
Shri Radhika said, "Friends, alas! I'm dying from the pain of separation! How will you take me to Vraja? Why engage in this calamity? Fate became my enemy, taking away My blissfull union with Krishna! How can you lock Me up in My mother-in-law's house? Lalita, you took Me out of My home today and made Me reenter it again on the same day. Why did you vainly make me greedy after stepping into the nectar-ocean of Krishna's company? Sakhi, the sun that I saw setting just now is yet again rising in the east! Now the night has become as illusory as a flower in the sky. Was there no night today? Curses on My ears! Curses on My tongue! Curses on My eyes! They are always burning with the fever of erotic eagerness, unable to drink even a drop of the nectar of Krishna's nice voice, nice taste and nice form!"
Lalita said, "O naive girl! Today the yoga of nocturnal union with Krishna recited the nirveda almanac (nirveda refers to impious acts , like adultery, that are forbidden by the Vedas) to You. Now, Your separation is also reciting the nirveda almanac (here, nirveda means lamentation) to You. The union made You taste the nectar of Acyuta, and the separation made You taste bitter poison. Alas!" Shri Radhika, the Supreme Goddess of love of Krishna, could not understand the words of Her girlfriends. Being surrounded by them, She entered Her house without being seen by the people of Vraja and lay down on Her bed.