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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > Compiled and Imp Scriptures > Ananda Vrindavana Champu > 05 Krishna Childhood

Chapter Five

Krishna's Childhood Pastimes



Krishna's Yawning and Childhood Pranks


Yasoda felt as if she had attained the ultimate fulfillment of all desires  by having Krishna as her son. Gazing at the lotus face of her darling  pleased her more than pleasure itself. One day Krishna yawned while  Vrajesvari breast fed Him. His yawning face appeared like a fully  blossoming lotus flower. Yasoda saw the earth and all its trees,  mountains, oceans, and cities situated in Krishna's mouth. She also saw both  herself and Nanda Maharaja within His mouth. Perceiving this touch of her  son's transcen­dental opulence overwhelmed Yasoda with astonishment. What  more can be said?


On another day when Yasoda breast fed Krishna, she glanced lovingly at His  lotus face and said, "O my darling son! Please open Your mouth so I can  see if any baby teeth have come in yet." Yasoda saw His baby teeth looking  just like tiny drops of her breast milk. In this way Krishna fulfilled the  desires of everyone, just as the rising moon creates happiness in all  directions with its soothing rays. Everyday it appeared that Pusti-devi,  the goddess of satisfaction, directly served Krishna by ever increasing His  pleasure. Sometimes Yasoda held Krishna to her breast, and other times Nanda  carried Him about on his shoulders.

Although Krishna is beyond the force of time, rules, and regulations, by His  free will He seemed to be following the laws governing human beings. At  this time, Krishna, whose body is softer than the petals of a lotus, crawled  around Nanda's courtyard on His hands and knees. Hearing the sweet  tinkling of His own waist-bells, Krishna stopped moving and looked with  surprise. Turning His conch-shell shaped neck, He glanced curiously over  His shoulder. Seeing these childish antics of Krishna filled Mother Yasoda's  heart with inconceivable joy.Crawling across the room, Krishna eventually  came to the door leading outside. Birds sat on the arches over the  jewel-inlaid doorway. Seeing the birds' forms reflected in the jewels,  Krishna tried to touch them with His soft reddish fingers, which resembled  the pink color (aruna) of the sky at dawn. The elderly gopis relished  these simple yet sublime pastimes of Krishna-kumara.

Krishna is completely made of transcendental consciousness, yet He ap­pears  to act like an ordinary human child. Although He has assumed a charmingly  soft and enchantingly beautiful form, He is actually the concentrated form  of the Absolute Truth. Just for fun Krishna crawle around like a little baby  pretending to be learning about the world. E such pastimes He filled the  Vrajavasi ladies with joy. Sometimes the elderly gopis joked with Krishna  and affectionately aske Him, "Point to Your face. Point to Your ear. Where  are Your eyes?" Krsr answered by touching those parts with His delicate  leaf-like fingers. Tf, ladies continued, "Krishna, show us Your teeth."  Krishna put His lotus har to His mouth, smiled and replied shyly, "My teeth  have not yet come out.

The wife of Upananda asked Krishna, "Who is Your father? Who is Your mother?  Please tell us." Again beaming that irresistible smile, Krsn; kumara  pointed toward Yasoda and Nanda Baba with His leaf-like ham The Vraja  gopas thrilled with bliss to see this.


One nurse, brimming with maternal affection, tested Krishna's speakir  ability. She said, "Can you say the names of Your parents?" Krishna ai  swered with distinct, softly spoken words. Then to everyone's amazemer  Krishna-kumara transgressed the rules of Sanskrit by combining the first  syllable of the word mixta (mother) and the second syllable of the word  tdta (father) and said, "mata" again and again.Sometime later Krishna  crawled into a room full of gems and jewels, and became afraid upon seeing  His own reflection in the jewels. In His ei chantment He tried to erase  the reflection with His hand. But He cou not remove the image at all.  Overcome with fear, Krishna climbed up c Yasoda's lap in order to escape.  Krishna tried to stand up and take a few steps on His own. Falling on H  bottom, He would look unhappily at Yasoda and cry for a moment. r  encourage Him, Yasoda held Krishna's finger and walked beside Him. Then  (  that lotus face, which had previously wilted from crying, blossomed with  bright smile. Thus Krishna brought great joy to mother Yasoda with H  moonlike face which bathed His body in the nectar of gentle beauty.One day  Radharani's grandmother Mukhara played a joke on Krishna by asking, "O  darling! Go fetch the large clay pot, the low wooden seat, ai the drinking  cup." With a mild smile on His face Krishna gingerly he some of the articles  in His hands while balancing the remainder on H gorgeous belly. After  walking some distance Krishna rested a little, ai then slowly lifted those  articles and brought them all to Mukhara. Tl heavy items that He -could  not lift, He just touched and left alone.Then the wives of Upananda and  Sunanda arrived and asked Vrajara Nanda if they could see Krishna. Due to  having previously worshiped great  devotees like Narada Muni and others,  the wives of Upananda ai Sunanda achieved the rare fortune of seeing the  charming lotus feet Krishna. They lifted Krishna onto their laps and said, "O  darling! You are the son of the king, so just drop these things. Such work  is not proper for`\ You." Then they rebuked Mukhara and threw away the  things Krishna had carried. In so many ways the village ladies joked with  Krishna. One elderly gopi said, "O my beloved Krishna! If Yoii dance for me, I  will give You some sweet butter." Krishna danced with delight for the  pleasure of Yasoda and the gopis by gracefully moving His legs and  gesturing artfully with His hands. At another time, one gopi smiled and  said, "What is that, darling, that looks like a golden doll? Is tint  beautiful golden line adorning Your chest Your wife?" Everyone laughed  when Krishna agreed by smiling and slightly moving His head from side to  side. At other times Yasoda affectionately dressed Krishna with exquisitely  fine, beautiful yellow cloth that complemented His attractive waist.  Unaccus­tomed to such opulent dress, Krishna felt bothered by it so He tried  to take it off while frowning and crying. Yisoda greatly enjoyed watching  Krishna throw away His clothes. Once the housewives of Vrndavana sat in a  lonely place braiding Yasoda's hair and dtcorating her with her favorite  jewelry. Suddenly restless Krishna snatched tie ornaments from Yasoda's  body, and tried to put them on again in the Wong places. Thus Krishna, with  a splendid neckace hanging from His chest, gradually completed His  crawling pastimes {cirana bihara). Watching the babyhood pastimes of his  beloved son imme-sed Vrajaraja Nanda in an ocean of bliss from Now we will  describe more of Kr,na-Balarama's nectarean pastimes. In order to see  Krishna's childhood pistimes the demigods had previously worshiped Devaki.  But even more >enerable than the demigods is Rohini, the mother of  Balarama, who hac performed an unlimited number of pious deeds. She  existed as the erroodiment of piety.  That person whom Rohini carriej  within her womb took birth before Lord Krishna. Rohini was famous lecause  her son manifested both the majesty and the sweet love of the .Absolute  Truth. All the great sages and realized saints have glorified Rohiii, the  mother of Baladeva. Krishna and Balarama behaved just like ordinay human  children. The beautiful dis­play of Their pastimes seemed like the  movements of emerald and crys­tal. When They played together K$na and  Balarama looked like a mon­soon cloud and moonbeams, a whie lotus and a  blue lotus, a pure white swan gliding on the ice blue wavesaf the Yamuna,  or a ray of moonlight shining through the darkest night. Fhe fantastic  transcendental pastimes of Krishna and Balarama far surmcunted the frivolous  play of ordinary children.


The spiritual bodies of Krishna ancBalarama glistened like the attractive  glow of blue sapphires and pure cystals. When Balarama embraced His  brother in a playful mood of ecstasy Krishna looked like a blue jewel held  ithin a conchshell. Seeing the mixture of Their brilliant effulgence;  Yasoda could not tell Them apart. At such times she often mistook Krsn for  Balarama. During Their childhood, Krishna and Balarama behaved ver  naughtily. Taking sticks in Their hands They used to chase ferocious ani  mals. Sometimes they ran into blazing forest fires, or dashed in front o  proud bulls while fearlessly trying to grab their long horns. These action  terrified Yasoda and Rohini, and filled them with apprehension and con  cern for their beloved boys.



The Name Giving Ceremony of Krishna


Vasudeva, the embodiment of pure goodness, sent the famous pries Garga  Muni to Gokula to perform the name giving ceremony of Krsn; and Balarama.  By his purity, Vasudeva blessed everyone and liberated hi ancestors from  their sinful reactions. Because of having perfectly con trolled his  senses, his fame spread in every direction for all time. Thi essence of  yajna is mantra, and the essence of Garga Rsi was his vas intelligence,  which he used to give expert advice. As Kapila Muni ha< previously  described the twenty-four elements of material nature, Garg; Muni  explained the truth of the planetary movements. He perfectly un derstood  the four Vedas and the twenty-two different intonations of chant ing Vedic  mantras. As the ocean is the source of all rivers, Garga Rs stood as a  rich storehouse of all branches of Vedic knowledge.


As the sun removes darkness and manifests simultaneously in man; places,  Garga Muni destroyed the ocean of ignorance and became fa mous everywhere  for his austerities. He also established a dynasty in hi name. As clouds  gather over Mt. Sumeru, the best of mountains, am pour profuse rain during  the monsoon season, wherever Garga Mun stayed in Vrndavana he showered  everyone with unlimited joy. Due t< his exceptional character, he brought  good fortune to all. Garga Muni the acarya of the Yadu dynasty, did not  immediately disclose the reasoi for his visiting Nanda Maharaja. Vrajaraja  Nanda received him respec tively, offered obeisances, worshiped him, and  washed his feet. Servinj the great sage filled Nanda's heart with  remarkable bliss.

Afterwards Nanda Maharaja took Garga Muni to a private place sprinkled the  sage's caranamrta on his head, and spoke submissively, "C best of the  sages! Saints of your caliber show compassion to others b; your exemplary  behavior. You remove the sufferings of birth, death, dis ease, old age,  and other miseries. Without a doubt, sages like you sanctif the world.  Indeed, I have attained unlimited fortune by drinking you caranamrta.  Simply a particle of dust from the feet of a realized soul lik< you, who  possesses all auspicious qualities, can liberate the entire universe from  mountains of sin. Those who worship saintly persons usu­ally have many  desires to fulfill. Simply by seeing you today the creeper of my desire  has borne fruit.

"Although you are physically strong, you are devoid of desire. You act  only to benefit others by relieving their distress. Your presence here has  made my life successful, so I need not ask why you have come. But listen,  I have something to say which you may not like. I am praying to you  because you are famous throughout the world for your compassion and  selflessness. Your glories illuminate the whole world. "I am disturbed by  various anxieties, but I feel somewhat afraid to ap­proach you because of  your exalted position. Nevertheless, since your heart is very soft, I feel  inclined to reveal my mind to you. O Master! The fame of Anakadundubhi  (Vasudeva) is heard throughout the world like the sound of a dundubhi  drum. I will be pleased and indebted if you pub­licly announce the names  of our two sons Rama and Krishna. Please per­form the necessary rituals for  Their auspicious name-giving ceremony." Favorably inclined, Garga Muni  replied,      "O Vrajaraja! Your humility conquers the hearts of  everyone, and your submissive request is free from pride and arrogance. As  the soothing rays of the moon bring pleasure to the kumuda flower, I will  satisfy your cherished desire in all respects. There is no one in this  world like the wicked King Kamsa. He is notorious for his cruelty and  cannot stand to see anyone else enjoy. He is like a poisonous fruit on a  dangling creeper. He defeated the demigods and put everyone in distress.  Now without any challenge, he has seized control of your country.


"Kamsa is always meditating upon the son of Vasudeva and inquiring about  His whereabouts. He hisses loudly like a snake hiding in a moun­tain cave.  He knows I am the acarya of the Yadu dynasty. Therefore, O Vrajaraja  Nanda! If I perform the auspicious name giving ceremony of your son, then  the inimical kings, who are moving amongst us in disguise, will  immediately disclose the news to that wicked king. All the sinful kings of  the Bhoja dynasty will treat us cruelly due to their malice. And among  them, Kamsa is envious and malicious. As a fire burning within a tree  causes continual pain, such kings give relentless suffering to others. It  is very difficult, therefore, to execute this ceremony." Overwhelmed with  lamentation over Garga Muni's words, Nanda Ma­haraja replied, "O my  Master! Your statements are certainly correct. Is there anyone alive who  could be envious of you? O affectionate one! The foolish people will not  know if we secretly hold the name-giving ceremony in my house. Besides our  four eyes, there are no other eyes here to see. "No one else will find out  if we observe the ceremony along with my intimate family members. Since  you are the embodiment of fortune, your presence alone can easily remove  the misery of material existence. There is no need for the external pomp  of drums, cymbals, and other musical instruments. You alone can perform  the ceremony by chanting all the necessary hymns and mantras." Garga  Muni's face beamed happily upon hearing Nanda's words. As a glass bowl of  oil reveals the objects within it, Garga Muni's executing this service  showed his inner prema rasa. Mother Yasoda and Rohini then brought Krishna  and Rama before the great sage. While gazing at Krishna, Garga Muni mused,  "The body of this little boy holds within Himself all the truths of the  Upanisads, and He firmly establishes the existence of God. Is He a flower  on the desire tree causing all our good fortune? Is His form the origin of  the nectar ocean of condensed bliss? Jnanis see Him as Brahman or the Lord  of the universe. Mental speculators see Him as the creator. Mystic yogis  see Him as the Supersoul and saintly devotees worship Him as Bhagavan.


"Although beyond the influence of time and space, that very same  Per­sonality of Godhead plays in the lap of His pure devotees Nanda and  Yasoda. O what an amazing sight! Is He the causeless origin of a beautiful  light within the dense darkness of ignorance? Ah! His form is completely  astonishing. Though reclining on the lap of His mother, He floods my heart  with a stream of joy. His darsana satisfies my eyes like a lamp of cooling  camphor. The fragrance of His body resembles the sweet smell of burning  aguru and sandalwood." "Krishna causes my body to manifest ecstatic symptoms  such as shaking, hair standing erect and mental bewilderment. I came here  to do His name giving ceremony, but if this joyous state continues it will  be impossible for me to do it."

Considering the situation, Garga again pondered, "If I hold on to His feet  everyone will say, 'This Garga Muni has gone crazy.' If I embrace Him to  my chest people will say I am acting frivolously. Alas! If I hold back and  do nothing, I will become filled with anxiety and lose my pa­tience. But  never mind; let it be like this. Today my life has really become  fortunate. My eyes have attained perfection, my learning and exalted birth  have now become blessed. The Lord has shown His compassion upon me and  made my life successful by making me the acarya of the divine Yadu  dynasty."

Thinking thus, Garga Muni simultaneously drank nectar and bathed in an  ocean of bliss. Due to this he seemed to be sleeping though awake; to be  in illusion though wise; to have fallen unconscious though alive; to be  blind though seeing; to be deaf though hearing; to be speaking though  appearing dumb, and to be frivolous though patient.


Yasoda and Rohini brought Krishna and Rama to Garga Muni. Full of all good  fortune, these two boys remove all misfortune. Before naming the children,  Garga Muni blessed Them by chanting auspicious mantras. Af­ter dispelling  all negative elements, Garga Muni selected appropriate names and initiated  the ceremony saying, "The son of Vasudeva is as powerful as the Supreme  Personality of Godhead, and He shall be named Bala because He possesses  extraordinary power. In the future He will enjoy wrestling so He will also  be called Baladeva. Sometimes His friends will defeat Him in the sport of  cracking jokes. At that time they will say, 'O Deva! Now show us your  strength.' For His relishing of hasya rasa (mellow of humor), He will be  called Balarama.

"He is the personification of fame and perfection and more glorious than  the creator. Since He will attract all people and remove their sins, the  name Sankarsana also befits Him. Handsome and pleasing to every­body, this  boy will become famous as Rama. Because He will show ex­traordinary  strength while playing He will be called Balarama. "As bhakti-yoga is  found among the four castes, your youngest son ap­pears in four colors:  white, red, yellow, and dark blue. Although your son resembles the hue of  a blue sapphire, in every millenium He manifests a different color to show  His compassion. In Satya-yuga, the people lived religious lives free from  sin. Your son appeared in that age in a white color. In Treta-yuga, fire  had three names: daksine-dgni, gdrhapatya-agni, and ahavdnya-dgni. In that  age your son appeared as the combination of these three fires known as  Yajna. In Dvapara-yuga, the Lord appears in a dark blue color resembling  the sydma color (dark blue complexion) of your son. In Kali-yuga, the age  of quarrel, He has a golden color."He will be addressed as Krishna which is a combination of five letters: ka,  ri, ?a, na, a. By the first four letters of His name He assumed the  different colors of the four yugas. His present syama color signifies  Vishnu, which is indicated by the last letter of Krishna's name. Therefore,  He, who now assumes the color of a blue sapphire, is the origin of all the  other yuga avataras and shall be known as Krishna.


"He will be called Krishna for His ability to attract the hearts of His  lovers and take away the sins of His devotees. The word km means existence  and the letter na signifies bliss. His primary name is Krishna because He is  the personification of bliss and eternality. Sometimes your younger son  combines with Yogamaya to appear as the son of the liberated soul  Vasudeva. For this reason He will also be known throughout the world as  Vasudeva. Your son has all the qualities of Narayana such as mercy,  for­giveness, truthfulness, and cleanliness. Sarasvati, the goddess of  learning, has put these concepts in my mind. Although Narayana is equal to  Krishna, your son is the origin and Narayana is His expansion. Since your  son pos­sesses the power to maintain the universe, everyone will call Him  Narayana.

"Not only Sarasvati proclaims this, but I also agree. My words fail to  reach the extent of your son's unlimited glories. Nanda Maharaja! You are  fortunate to have such a phenomenal child. By His mercy you will easily  overcome all difficulties now and in the future. Not only that, but anyone  who loves your son will have all his desires fulfilled. Though the pandits  have attained the rare fortune of knowing everything, still they will not  be able to fathom the identity of your son. Do not reveal this  confidential truth to anyone."

Then Garga Muni picked up Krishna, who removes all distress, and placed Him  on his lap. From the touch of Krishna, the sage experienced ecstatic  symptoms such as horripilation and hairs standing erect. At that moment  Garga Muni thought, "Aha! This boy is displaying unprecedented effulgence.  How can this child's transcendental brilliance appear along with material  objects such as kajala, a cloud, a blue lotus, and a blue sap­phire?  Expert pandits have explained this by saying that the Brahman has appeared  on earth as the effulgence of your jewel-like son." After giving the boys a final loving embrace, Garga Muni placed Them on  Nanda's lap and prepared to leave. Nanda Maharaja stood up and  respectfully escorted Garga Muni outside.


Krishna's Pastimes of Stealing Butter


Krishna's pastimes of crawling about and drinking His mother's breast milk  gradually stopped. Soon He walked on His lotus feet and started stealing  butter. Is there anyone who did not feel unlimited bliss when the Lord,  who is the very source of bliss, enacted His childhood pastimes?

One day when no one was looking, Krishna began His pastimes of steal­ing  fresh butter. Startled upon seeing His own reflection in a jeweled inlaid  pillar, He shivered in fear and said, "O dear brother, do not tell mother.  I will save some butter for You and You may enjoy too." Watch­ing her  mischievous son from a hidden place, Mother Yasoda heard these sweet  broken words with great relish. Then she innocently appeared be­fore Krishna  and Rama.

Pointing to His effulgent reflection, Krishna said, "O Ma! Being very  greedy, this boy came here today in order to steal your butter. Although I  forbade Him, He did not listen to Me. And when I got angry with Him, He  also got angry. But I am not at all greedy for butter." One day while  Yasoda was outside the house engaged in some domestic activities, inside  the house Krishna stole butter again. When Yasoda re­turned and called out,  "O my darling Krishna! Where are You and what are You doing?" Hearing her,  Krishna became afraid and stopped stealing butter. Pausing for a moment, He  answered, "Mother! My hand started burning from the shining effulgence of  My ruby bangles, so I stuck it in this butter pot to relieve the pain."  Pleased by her son's clever words, Yasoda said, "Hey Vatsa! Please come  sit on my lap. Oh My darling, show me the burns on Your hand." Then Yasoda  kissed Krishna's hand and consoled Him, saying, "Ahh...ahh... Look, Your  hand has been burned. So let me remove these ruby bangles." On another day  Krishna cried and rubbed His eyes with His flower bud­like palms. In a  choked voice He uttered unintelligible phrases. Even though Yasoda had  previously scolded Krishna for stealing butter, this time she wiped the  tears from His eyes with the edge of her sari. While ten­derly caressing  Krishna, She said, "Hey Lala, all of our stock of butter actu­ally belongs  to You alone."

One night the soothing rays of the full moon illumined the courtyard of  Nanda's house. Yasoda sat there talking with some elderly gopis while  Krishna played nearby gazing at the moon. Sneaking up behind Yasoda, Krishna  removed the veil covering her head, loosened her braid, and pat­ted her on  the back to get her attention with His butter-soft lotus palms. His voice  choked up as He continually cried. Yasoda's heart swelled with maternal  love, so she indicated with a glance that her friends should at­tend to  Krishna.


With great respect and affection the gopis enthusiastically lifted up  Krishna and asked, "O darling! What do You want? Do You want some khiraV  Krishna replied, "No, No!"         "Do You want some thick creamy yo-gurt?"  Krishna replied, "No, No!" "Do you want some cheese?" Again Krishna said, "No,  no! I want freshly churned condensed butter." The gopis con­tinued, "Do  not lament or be angry with Your mother. What do You mean by 'condensed  butter?' " Pointing His little index finger to the full moon, Krishna  replied, "I want that freshly churned condensed butter!" The elderly gopis  said, "O Vatsa! Do not mistake the moon for a huge piece of butter. It is  a rajahamsa (royal swan) gliding across the lake of the sky." Krishna said,  "Then give Me that rajahamsa so I can play with him. Quickly catch him  before he reaches the bank of the lake. Full of anxiety, Krishna kicked His  legs and cried loudly, "Give Me! Give Me!"

While Krishna showed his childish antics, some other gopis said, "O  dar­ling! They have lied to You. What You see is not a rajahamsa, but it  is the moon hanging in the sky and it is called Candra." Krishna said, "Then  give Me that Candra! I really want it so I can play with it. Right now!  Get it!"

Yasoda placed her crying son on her lap and comforted Him, "Darling!  Actually it is freshly churned condensed butter! Definitely, it is not a  rajahamsa nor is it the moon. Regardless, I can never give it to You. Just  see by chance or by the arrangement of Providence it has poisonous spots  on it. Although it looks very tasty, no one in this world can eat it."  Then Krishna said, "Mother, mother! Why is it stained with spots of poi­son?  What is poison anyway?" Seeing a change in Krishna's mood, mother Yasoda  embraced Him and spoke in a gentle, sweet voice. "Listen atten­tively my  dearest son. There is an ocean of milk called Ksira-sagara." Krishna:  "Mother please tell Me about that? How many milk cows made that ocean?"

Yasoda: "Darling, the milk ocean was not made by cows."

Krishna: "Mother, you are lying to Me. How can there be milk without cows?"

Yasoda: "The one who gave cows the ability to produce milk can also make  milk even without cows."

Krishna: "Who is He?"

Yasoda: "He is the Lord, the cause of creation. He is Bhagavan. He is  immovable and all pervading. Although He is everywhere, I cannot show Him  to You."

Krishna: "Well mother, are you telling Me the truth?"

Yasoda: "Long ago the demigods and the demons had a fight. To favor the  demigods and bewilder the demons, the Lord churned the ocean of milk.  Mandara Mountain served as the churning rod and Vasuki, the king of the  serpents, offered his body for the rope. The demons and demigods stood on  opposite sides pulling that rope."

Krishna: "Mother, did they churn the way the gopis do?"

Yasoda: "Yes my son. The churning of the Ksira-sagara produced a poi­son  named kalakuta."

Krishna: "Mother, how did churning milk produce poison? Only snakes have  poison."

Yasoda: "Darling, Mahadeva drank that poison. But the snakes drank the  drops of poison that fell from his mouth. As a result, they now have  poison. The poison rising from that milk is also the energy of the Lord."

Krishna: "Yes mother that is indeed true."

Yasoda: "Darling, this condensed butter You are seeing in the sky is  produced from that Ksira-sagara. That is why the moon is spotted with the  remnants of that poison. Look carefully, do You see it? Therefore, do not  try to eat that butter, but please take my freshly churned butter  instead." After hearing this description, Krishna felt sleepy so mother  Yasoda put Him to rest in an opulent golden bed on a fluffy soft mattress,  whiter than powdered camphor.

The next morning Yasoda brought butter, yogurt and other eatables into  Krishna's room. Lovingly fondling His body, she said, "Wake up! God forbid,  You seem to be weak from not eating sufficiently yesterday." Af­ter Krishna  awoke, Yasoda cleansed His mouth with scented water. Then she offered Him  a golden plate full of butter, yogurt and other delights while saying, "O  my beloved son, take whatever You like."


Krishna replied, "Mother, I will not eat anything that you have brought Me.  Last night you lied to Me and put Me to sleep. And I felt very dis­tressed  due to hunger." Yasoda said, "Krishna, if You went to sleep then who stole  the butter?" Krishna replied, "Mother, when did I steal your butter? You are  lying." With His charming transcendental pastimes Krishna continually  captivated the heart of mother Yasoda. Sometimes while roaming in the  courtyard Krishna caught a stray calf, put it on His lap, and kissed it with  His lotus mouth. Seeing this Yasoda felt both pleased and apprehensive. In  the pasturing ground Krishna some­times grabbed the tail of a calf.  Startled, the calf would jump up and run away dragging Krishna, dressed only  by the wind, behind him. Thus the uncovered Brahman personified stole the  hearts of the Vrajavasis.Sometimes, Krishna smeared cow dung all over  Himself. Seeing it as musk covering His body, the Vrajavasis enjoyed a  festival of beauty. How can there be any inebriety in the one who is  beauty personified? At other times, Yasoda tied a very attractive turban  on Krishna's head, and dressed Him in gorgeous yellow garments. After  marking His body with tilaka the color of gorocana, she would anoint His  lotus eyes with soft kajala. Adopting the mood of an ordinary mother,  Yasoda placed her saliva on Krishna's forehead to prevent people from  casting an evil eye on her son, whose sublime elegance enchants the entire  creation. While playing in the courtyards of the gopis, Krishna often wore a  necklace of tiger nails set in gold and a waist belt bedecked with costly  jewels.Once the Vraja gopis talked amongst themselves, "Krishna brings good  fortune wherever He goes, and His presence make everyone's life glori­ous.  Who in this world is not enchanted by the frivolous and amusing childhood  pastimes of Krishna? Who cannot appreciate these mirthful ac­tivities?"  Rather than getting upset, they felt the greatest happiness when­ever  Krishna broke their clay pots and stole their butter.Still the housewives of  Vrndavana pretended to be angry and complained to Yasoda about Krishna's  stealing. In a mixed mood of love and laughter the gopis warned Yasoda, "O  Queen of Vrndavana, Yasoda! In the future you will suffer for the  mischievous acts of your son. Although now your son is like a young sprout  with tender leaves, already He is disrupting the whole creation. But be  careful, in the future when this tender sprout grows into a tree full of  leaves and branches, He will bring you tremendous pain. Now your boy's  adventures are just beginning, but by nature they are forever expanding.  Your son's naughty behavior will soon destroy our whole village. We have  no idea what mischief He will do next. "Before our cows have been milked, your son unties the calves and lets  them drink all the milk. If someone tries to rebuke Him, He simply smiles sweetly, and that person immediately forgets all his anger. If we keep our  butter in a dark storeroom, He uses His natural effulgence to easily find  our stock and steal it. But instead of eating it Himself, He takes great  plea­sure in feeding it to the monkeys. When the monkeys reach their fill  and refuse to eat more, Krishna breaks the pot and throws the butter on the  ground.

"He catches the butter pots which are beyond His reach by stacking many  small tables on top of each of other, climbing them, and extending His arm  to grab the pots. Krishna is always stealing our butter and yogurt. If  someone tries to stop Him, He immediately drops the food on the ground and  quickly escapes. If by chance a housewife captures Him, Krishna twists her  wrist and runs away. Then from a safe distance He yells back, 'Hey just  stay where you are! If you come any closer, I will give you even more  trouble by teasing your babies and making them cry.'

"If someone calls, 'Hey thief, stop!' Krishna becomes angry and shouts, 'You  are the thief. This house is Mine and everything in this house be­longs to  Me.'

"In the morning we spread a fresh layer of clay on the outer walls of our  houses, and paint beautiful designs on top of it with powdered limestone.  Then your son Krishna comes along to spoil everything by throwing dirt all  over our houses. In front of you, Krishna is so quiet and well behaved. But  when He enters our homes He acts frivolously, steals our food, speaks  sharp words, and becomes angry and greedy."

In this way the ladies of Vrndavana, pretending to be angry, made many  complaints against Krishna. But in reality Krishna's joyous pranks filled  ev­eryone with pleasure. When accused by the gopis, Krishna feigned  inno­cence and shed false tears. Though culpable for His immoral acts of  steal­ing and offending the villagers in various ways, Krishna tried to  minimize His misdeeds by speaking very sweetly. Responding to the charges of the gopis, Krishna said, "Mother, none of these  ladies have any affection in their hearts. They are not speaking a single  word of truth. Actually they are all liars, and have given up their human  dignity. Whenever I see them or their sons I feel completely happy.  Because of the natural affection I have for them, I regularly visit their  homes every morning at sunrise.


"Ma, so knowing My motives you can easily understand they are  delib­erately telling lies. You should not believe them at all. Mother,  since you are My worshipable superior, from now on I will not visit My  friends any more." Saying this, Krishna sobbed and cried. Vrajesvari Yasoda  put Krishna on her lap and smiled shyly at the gopis in order to conceal her  real mood. Then just to please Krishna, Yasoda said, "You gopis are all  telling lies. Only Krishna is telling the truth. He is just an innocent boy,  so how could He possibly do such things. I think you have already scolded  my son sufficiently." After saying this, Yasoda spoke af­fectionately with  the gopis. Then as a friendly gesture, Rohini applied tilaka to their  foreheads and sent them home.After the departure of the gopis, Yasoda, who  is expert in the laws of etiquette, spoke to Krishna, "My son, because of  greed You performed many improper acts in the homes of our friends.  Although in Your own home such behavior is acceptable, in the home of  another it is totally unbecoming. O beautiful one! These deeds of Yours  were not good at all. From now on just stay here and play." After  instructing her son Yasoda caressed Him lovingly.Just then Vrajaraja Nanda  arrived and brightened the room with his favorable feelings. Nanda spoke  pleasing words to encourage and pacify his charming son. "O Vatsa! Come  sit on my lap." Leaving Yasoda's lap, Krishna climbed up on Nanda's lap and  wrapped His arm around His father's neck. Then Krishna said softly, "Why is  mother chastising Me for nothing?"

Nanda responded, "What is this all about?"

That fabulous boy of oceanic intelligence replied, "Mother, now tell  truthfully what happened."

Then mother Yasoda recounted the misdeeds of Krishna by repeating the words  uttered by the gopis.

Pointing to Queen Yasoda, Vrajaraja Nanda said, "My son is faultless. He  has not done anything wrong. I always see Him behaving nicely. By siding  with those who made fun of Him and with those who showed envy toward my  jewel-like son, you have wrongly accused my well-behaved son and so you  should be punished." Concealing his real mood behind these words, Nanda  rebuked Yasoda and comforted his son: "O my darling son, just stay in my  lap and do not go to anyone else." Though hearing His father's words,  Krishna immediately jumped off his lap just like an unpredictable child, and  quickly climbed on Yasoda's lap. Seeing this gave both parents a hearty  laugh.



Krishna Plays in the Village



One day Vrajaraja Nanda and Yasoda spoke about their son, the van­quisher  of many demons. "When Krishna is out playing He likes to wander off alone  leaving the powerful Balarama behind. We should hire some­one to supervise  Their play, and send some expert servants to accompany Them. Let them  wander all over Vrndavana serving our two boys." Shortly later, Nanda  engaged some servants to take care of his boys.Every morning after leaving  their respective houses, the cowherd boys came to the home of Krishna and  Balarama. The meeting of Krishna and Balarama with Their friends and  servants looked like a king meeting his ministers and advisors. As a baby elephant picks up dirt with his trunk  and throws it all around, Krishna entered the open fields of the village,  and playfully covered Himself and His friends with vraja-raja (dust of  Vrndavana). At this time Krishna used to sport with both young boys and  girls of the same age. Sometimes Krishna quarreled with the gopas and gopis  and beat them, and other times they beat Him. Krishna responded by laughing,  getting angry, or by not reacting at all.Playing in the dirt Krishna, built  houses, a toy wall, or a small town. Other times He broke the dirt houses  of His friends and they broke His. When Krishna rebuilt His house, they  would break it again. While curiously ob­serving these antics from the  sky, the demigods thought, "Simply by His glance thousands of unlimited  universes come into existence and then again are dissolved. Instead of  bothering with that work, He now plays in the dirt making roads, homes,  and villages. Although He is becoming ex­hausted from doing this, He does  not give it up." Krishna's perplexing pas­times captivated the minds of the  demigods. While Krishna delighted in the dirt, He looked like the sun  shining in the sky.The housewives of Vrndavana, full of motherly  affection, addressed Krishna with sweet words, "O darling boy! Please come  to our beautiful courtyards, play with our children, and take some food."  Hearing this, Krishna smiled and replied softly, "I cannot come because I do  not have any spare time." Thus the all-attractive beloved of every  mother's heart cleverly responded to the elderly gopis. Anxious to express  their motherly affection toward Krishna, these impatient gopis held His hand  and hurried to their homes. In their eyes, fortune had blessed Krishna alone  as the sole recipient of matchless beauty. Brimming with love, the elderly  gopis served Krishna by rubbing His body and bathing Him. With great  devotion they fed Him butter, rdbri and ksira, and then sent Him home.


Krishna Eats Clay


One day Krishna ate some clay in order to expand the glories of His be­loved  land of Vrndavana and to purify the universe. Upon seeing that, Balarama,  who possesses keen powers of discrimination, and a group of cowherd boys  ran to tell mother Yasoda. "Mother! Krishna cannot control His mind. Out of  greed He just ate some clay! Despite our rebukes, He just keeps eating  more and more."On hearing such harsh words about her son, Mother Yasoda  felt dis­turbed. Her eyebrows raised in anger, she grabbed a bundle of  sticks and quickly ran out of the house. Finding Krishna, she said. "Hey You  naughty boy! Why did You eat clay? Didn't I give You enough sweets? Who  can enjoy eating clay? Just as we caught You before doing mischief in  others'homes, now we caught You again. Don't You realize that You cannot  hide Your faults? Your elder brother and friends are always there to  witness all Your misbehavior." In fear of His mother, Krishna tried to  conceal His faults. Though per­forming many mischievous deeds, He  pretended to be completely inno­cent, and poured profuse tears from His  lotus eyes. In order to counteract the charges, Krishna said emphatically,  "Mother! I did not eat any clay. They are all lying. If you do not believe  Me, then just look in My mouth." Vrajesvari Yasoda replied, "Alright, open  Your mouth." Krishna, the embodiment of unlimited power and the abode of  good for­tune, smiled and opened His lotus mouth. Mother Yasoda saw  Bhuloka and the seven islands amidst limitless oceans. Bhuloka extended  for a great distance with varieties of human beings and roaring rivers  along its edges. Both small and large forests covered its surface. Trees  wrapped with flowering creepers blowing in the wind spread in all  directions.Lions and many types of animals inhabited its huge mountain  chains. She saw the lower planetary systems including Nagaloka and the  Nagapatnis serving their master. She saw the heavens complete with stars,  planets, constellations, and the passing of the days. She saw the abodes  of the celestials populated by Siddhas, Caranas, Gandharavas, and  Vidyadharas. Munis such as Marichi, Atri, and other famous sages  beau­tified that realm with their radiant auras. Beyond that, Yasoda saw  Maharloka, Tapaloka, and other universes as well. Countless living  enti­ties from the insignificant insects up to demigods like Indra and  Brahma inhabited those regions. Within Krishna's mouth Yasoda also saw  herself, Nanda Maharaja, Vraja-dhama, and her son Nandanandana.


Upon marveling at these sights, mother Yasoda said, "What am I see­ing? Am  I dreaming? Is it the illusory energy? Is it a show of magic? Am I under a  hypnotic spell?" This pastime put Yasoda into complete bewil­derment. But  after a moment, the wise Yasoda thought, "Indeed, this must have been a  display of Krishna's limitless power and opulence." For­getting all these  ideas, Yasoda tried to find out what had happened. Re­gardless of what she  had seen, Yasoda felt that Krishna must protect her.Upon seeing that amazing  universal form, mother Yasoda concluded that her son was a most  extraordinary personality. She thought, "Mahadeva himself must be  astounded by the majesty and influence of my son. Cer­tainly Krishna must be  the supreme controller." Although Krishna revealed Himself as the supreme  controller, due to the influence of Yogamaya, mother Yasoda continued to  treat Him as her dependent son. In order to expedite the free exchange of  sweet intimate love between Himself and His dear devotees, Krishna quickly  abandoned His mood as the Absolute Supreme Controller.