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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > Compiled and Imp Scriptures > Ananda Vrindavana Champu > 15 Lifting Govardhana Hill

Chapter Fifteen

Lifting Govardhana Hill


Looking like the full moon surrounded by a galaxy of stars, Krishna, the  playful son of Vrajaraja Nanda, enjoyed blissful pastimes with His  inti­mate associates. These joyous pastimes perfectly befit the enchanting  at­mosphere of Vrndavana. In the daytime, Krishna tended the cows and  sported with His boyfriends. Mother earth felt honored by the touch of  Krishna's lotus feet. The cowherd boys felt inconceivable bliss within their  minds as they frolicked with Krishna. During their fun-filled days, Krishna  often killed some envious demon, who acted like poison to saintly  per­sons.


One day Nanda Maharaja, the abode of kindness, simplicity, and joy and  other senior men of Vrndavana made preparations to worship the demigod  Indra. They collected many articles and made elaborate arrange­ments for a  joyous festival. Noticing this, Krishna said to His father, "O honored one!  What is the name of the ceremony you are organizing? Which demigod are you  trying to please? Who is the guru instructing you in this yajna with nis  infallible words? What injunctions and system of worship are you  following?"Why are people running around mechanically in all directions? I  do not understand the meaning of it. Of course, since I am only a boy you  may not consider Me qualified to comprehend your explanation. But if you  think I am eligible, then tell Me all the details of this yajna from  beginning to end. If, however, you think it is too confidential, then  still you should tell, because one should not keep secrets from  well-wishers. But such details should never be revealed to one's  enemies."After speaking so maturely, Krishna sat next to Vrajaraja Nanda on  a cloth asana. Nanda Baba lovingly picked up His son, who was like a  spot­less moon moving on the earth, and placed Him on his lap. Hearing the  sweet questions of his son, Nanda affectionately smiled revealing his  at­tractive white teeth. The soft glow of his face resembled nectar drops  of milk. This nectar appeared to be washing and nourishing Nanda's beard,  which was mixed with white and black hair. Beaming in a jolly mood,  Vrajaraja Nanda tactfully described the nature of the sacrifice.Nanda  Maharaja said, "My dear son! In our family line we have been observing  this Indra yajna for a long time. We experience prosperity and freedom  from disturbances due to its proper performance. Our only wealth is the  cows that live on grass, which needs rain to grow. Rain comes from the  clouds that are controlled by the demigod Indra. For all these  reasons,therefore, I am making a grand festival to please Indra."Every  year at this time we carefully observe this sacrifice. Being pleased with  our yajna, Indra sends abundant rainfall. The other demigods gladly accept  our oblations of ghee, and show their gratitude by preserving what we have  and providing what we need. The scriptures say that human be­ings who  honor this tradition become glorious and attain the heavenly planets in  their next lives. Any man can attain peace of mind by the bless­ings of  the demigods. Those who neglect to worship the demigods, how­ever, cannot  get any relief from their problems."After hearing these bitter words,  Krishna smiled mildly to hide His feel­ings and then refuted Nanda's  presentation. Krishna's eloquent delivery amazed and pleased the Vrajavasis.  Indeed, Krishna mesmerized the en­tire audience with His words.

Krishna said, "In this regard your actions are not justified. The force of  karma causes the birth, maintenance, and destruction of all living  enti­ties. It is not the demigods, but it is a person's work that  determines his destiny. A saintly person, therefore, need not worship any  demigod. One may beg so many desirable things from the demigods. But the  demigods cannot give one more then what he is destined by his own pious  and impi­ous acts. Only those who cannot control their senses propound  that demi­gods can award more than what one has worked to attain."You can  say that living entities are inspired to act by the Supersoul. But this is  also false, because every individual is under the control of his own  conditioned nature. In reality, it is the acquired desires and personal  nature of a living entity that cause him to act. Where is the question of  the Supersoul being the supreme controller? Even the Lord Himself does not  directly perform the activities of creation, maintenance, and  destruc­tion. All these actions are conducted by the three modes of  material na­ture, namely goodness, passion, and ignorance."It is not a  fact that wherever it rains, the cause is worshiping and pleas­ing Indra,  who in turn sends the rain clouds. There is constant rain during the  monsoon season. But you cannot say that Indra sends it. Indeed, the  monsoon rains bring mental distress and make people weak and thin. So that  rain is not the mercy of someone who is pleased."Do the seas and mountains  worship Indra? Of course not, but still they are full of water. Why does  Indra give them so much water? Impelled by the material mode of passion,  the clouds pour rain everywhere, and this rain sustains all creatures.  Therefore, nothing will happen if you do not worship Indra.


"The brahmana maintains his life by studying and teaching the Vedas, the  ksatriya by protecting the earth and political activity, the vaisya by  trade and agriculture, and the sudra by serving the other classes. The  occupational duties of the vaisya are conceived of in four divisions:  farm­ing, commerce, cow protection, and money lending. Of these, our duty  is cow protection."Neither in the past nor the present has there been any  certainty about having a successful grain harvest in our village.  Therefore, this yajna means nothing to us. It is our nature to dwell in  the forest and wander in the woods and on the hills. Since we never stay  in one place, why should we perform the Indra _ya/>ia, which is not based  on scriptural injunctions?

"O father! You are peaceful and respected by everyone. You should have  faith in My words, for they will remove all danger. Now just expertly  worship Govardhana Hill with all the ingredients collected for the Indra  yajna. This great mountain is not only named Govardhana, but it has the  ability to increase (vardhana) the health and satisfaction of our cows  (go).

"Collect pots full of milk and make first-class milk sweets like sweet  rice. Cook many tasty foods and fancy cakes. Bring leaf bowls full of  ghee, honey, and nectar drinks. Prepare an ocean of yogurt, buttermilk,  and fresh butter. Build a mountain of rock candy, and cover all directions  with an abundance of shikharini rasala.

"Send messengers to invite the brahmanas. Feed them sumptuously until they  laugh, and their faces beam with the brilliant garlands of their bliss­ful  smiles. At that moment, the brahmanas will consider that the heavenly  storehouses of nectar are totally insignificant. Call the priests to  conduct the fire sacrifice and distribute cows in charity to the  brahmanas. Those among you who are simple-hearted should just try to feed  the brahmanas.

"You should please everyone by making an annakuta (hill of food) with  thick dais, varieties of aromatic vegetables, and very palatable sweet  cakes surrounded by pools of unlimited sweet rice. Then worship  Giri-Govardhana with the proper articles such as padya. After feeding the  brahmanas, you should give food to everyone else, including such fallen  souls as dogs and dog-eaters. Saturate the directions with the sweet music  of bheris, resonant conches, tumultuous kettledrums, and various other  instruments. The witty, well versed brahmanas will start the yajna with  perfectly pronounced mangalacarana mantras. The entire horizon will be  surcharged with all these auspicious sounds.

"According to sastric injunction, you should circumambulate Giriraja to  conclude the worship. Decorated with priceless jingling ornaments that  delight the ears, the men should dress so luxuriously that even the  demi­gods would be astonished. The housewives with their sweet, gentle  smiles should also assemble. Invite the male and female artists to dance  and sing along with flutes, vinas and mrdangas. Bring the bullock carts in  a proces­sion lead by scholarly brahmanas, who are truly the personified  jewels of all auspiciousness.

"You, who have the audacity to challenge even Lord Indra, who lives for  milleniums, should happily circumambulate Govardhana Hill along with your  cows, bulls and calves. Do not think, 'How can we have faith that Giriraja  will gratify our desires?' Soon Giriraja will fulfill all your desires and  become famous as a second Mahendra. He will reward you hand­somely and  make all your endeavors fruitful. What more can I say? O father! If you  want to, you can follow My advice and achieve an auspi­cious result."

After hearing Krishna's speech, Nanda Maharaja and the leading men of  Vrndavana accepted His proposal. They agreed that this must be done to  satisfy their desires. Acting as the acarya of the yajna, Krishna directed  the Vrajavasis to worship Giriraja with all the paraphernalia collected  for Indra's worship. This of course made Indra extremely angry.Nothing  else could be heard in Vrndavana except the auspicious vibra­tion of  instrumental music. Vedic hymns resounded through the sky. The Vrajavasis  felt blissful, and all the living entities entered a jolly mood from the  worship of Govardhana.Hearing the melodious voices of the ladies, the cuckoos anxiously tried to  learn singing from them. Ears attained their purpose by perceiving those  auspicious sounds. The cows were adorned with gold-plated horns, colorful  silk cloths on their backs, pearl necklaces, and tinkling bells hang­ing  from their necks. Seeing their mothers so richly ornamented, the calves  jumped excitedly.Nanda Maharaja brought the necessary articles from his  house to wor­ship Govardhana Hill. He initiated the. puja by respectfully  offering padya (water) to wash Giriraja's feet. In an ebullient mood, he  made the Annakuta hill complete with powerful peaks that delighted all in  atten­dance. The peak rising out of the middle of the hill looked like a  crown made of white camphor. The multi-colored cakes stuck on the sides of  the Annakuta hill looked like stones and boulders. At the base of the hill  there were clay pots full of milk, yogurt, and sweet rice. There were also  colorful sabjis, lakes of dahl, and very fragrant soups. Due to its covering oighee, the Annakuta Mountain looked like golden Mt.  Kailasa shimmering under a cover of rain. Different kinds of fruits and  flowers decorated its edges. When Nanda Maharaja saw the opu­lence of  Annakuta spreading its sweet aroma of cloves, camphor, and cardamom in all  directions, he felt that this was fitting honor to Shri Giriraja, the king  of all mountains.


Shri Hari smiled happily upon seeing the amazing Annakuta rivaling the peak  of Mt. Sumeru. Suddenly, the playful, fun-loving, indomitable Krishna  assumed a huge unprecedented form and stood on top of Govardhana Hill. He  did this to anger Indra and instill faith in the cowherd men.Observing  this powerful form glowing like a thousand suns, Krishna, who remained among  the cowherd men in His original human-like form, cast a gentle glance upon  everyone and said, "Hunghol Look! Look! By using all the paraphernalia to  exclusively worship Govardhana Hill with pure love you have received his  favor. Govardhana, the best of all mountains, has now manifested before  you as a brilliantly effulgent person. Please look closely! The huge mouth  of this expanded form of Giriraja resembles a deep cave. Though his mouth  is massive, his face looks as beautiful as the full moon. Usually trees  serve as his arms, but now he has two beauti­ful arms adorned with  attractive jeweled armlets. Usually hard rocks cover his body, but now he  has assumed a tender sweet form. Look how that beautiful body walks over  the other non-moving form!"Moreover, this non-moving form is sitting like  a seat made of costly emeralds, but it appears like the huge chest of the  moving one. Glittering like a row of rubies, his teeth look like the crown  of the non-moving form. The saffron hue of the minerals on the non-moving  form gives an attrac­tive hue to the lips of the moving one. In  comparison, these two forms of Govardhana manifest the same elegance.  Govardhana is reciprocating with your overflowing love and devotion. He is  acting like a hungry per­son extending his arms bedecked with jeweled  bangles. Look! Just see how this hill has appeared in person to fulfill  your desires! Now offer respects to him."• Both Krishna and the people of  Vrndavana bowed down to this personi­fied form of Govardhana Hill. In  effect, Krishna actually offered obeisances to Himself. When the cowherd  men, their wives, and the leading men of Vrndavana saw that form shining  like the sun, they raised their folded hands above their heads and said,  "Namo! Namo! Namol" Being over­whelmed in affection, they danced around  ecstatically. By joyfully wor­shiping Govardhana Hill, the Vrajavasis  realized that Govardhana is a person.Music from the temples wherein  different demigods were being wor­shiped resounded in all directions. From  all sides intoxicated dancers per­formed blissfully. The heavenly Kinnaras  joined in with euphoric danc­ing. Relishing the music and singing, the  Vrajavasis forgot themselves in that joyous Govardhana festival.Govardhana  caused the entire atmosphere to abound in happiness. Govardhana Hill  affectionately accepted the faithful worship of Nanda Maharaja by  manifesting a personal form. Anyone who simply hears and chants about the  glories of Giri-Govardhana, which are inconceivable to ordinary people,  will be delivered from all calamities.Vrajaraja Nanda, the father of the  subduer of demons, concluded the propitious worship of Giriraja by  sumptuously feeding the brahmanas,and everyone else down to the dogs. He  handsomely rewarded the singers and dancers. Everyone attending the  festival received precious gems and divinely opulent garments. Their  hearts full of joy, the Vrajavasis talked excitedly among themselves as  they did parikrama of Govardhana Hill.Skilled musicians led the way  playing the finest instrumental music. The languid muffled tones of  bheris, dhakas and kettledrums softened the at­mosphere with their  pleasing vibrations. With their bodies decorated with designs drawn in  kunkuma, the cowherd boys followed behind the musi­cians. Wielding sticks,  they fearlessly drove the multi-colored cows orna­mented with gold and  jewels.A second group of talented musicians came along playing flutes and  vinas. Next came singers with sweet gentle voices, and ecstatic dancers  moving in rows one behind the other. Then the gopis, their faces glowing  with happiness, came riding on bullock carts that rivaled the golden  chariots of the gods. They sang loudly about their intimate pastimes with  Krishna.Hari, who removes all obstacles, laughed and joked with His cowherd  boyfriends as He circumambulated Govardhana Hill. Eternally bound to Him  in faith, Krishna's friends remained fearless and free from all anxi­eties.  Wearing a sweet-smelling flower garland across his broad chest, Nanda  Maharaja walked just behind the boys. He was smiling in great satisfaction  and accompanied by the leading men of Vrndavana.In accordance to  scriptural injunctions, they gave charity to brahmanas at different places  while going around Giriraja. It is impossible to find a suitable container  to hold the unlimited bliss that the Vrajavasis felt dur­ing their  parikrama of Giriraja. Even though tiny in size, the soul can enjoy  immeasurable happiness. As a result, their souls drowned in incon­ceivable  joy. The continuous music of the dhakas and kettledrums, which are famous  on heaven and earth, increased the bliss of the parikrama.Soon they  arrived on the banks of the Yamuna (which previously flowed near  Govardhana). Being the glorious day of bhratridvitiya tithi, which is very  dear to both Yamuna and her brother Yamaraja, they decided to take an  auspicious bath. Bhratridvitiya tithi is the day when sisters pray for the  prosperity of their brothers. Sunanda, the intelligent, well-behaved  daughter of Upananda, invited her cousin-brother Damodara (Krishna), who is  always jubilant and victorious, to celebrate the festival.

Damodara, who delights all moving and non-moving creatures, gladly  accepted the sincere request of Sunanda. His heart overflowed with lov­ing  feelings for that dear sister. She affectionately served many types of  delicious drinks and tasty cakes to Krishna and His friends. Haladhara and  all the boys enjoyed the excellent food while Batu, the skillful jester,  en­tertained the enchanter of the world with his funny jokes and antics.

Batu quipped, "Alas! Alas! O dear friend, killer of the Agha demon! Why  didn't the foolish creator make every tithi as bhratridvitiya tithil O  brother, whose chest shines with the mark of Shrivatsa, we count the year  in terms of days. So how come You do not have many sisters like Sunanda,  who acting as the embodiments of kindness, will fill us up like this every  day of the year? If this had happened, it would have been a great source  of pleasure for us. Yesterday's exciting Govardhana festival has passed.  Though heaps of food and drink were offered, and although I am a  vora­cious eater, still I did not enjoy as much as I have today on  bratridvitiya."Krishna, who steals everyone's heart with His charming  character, en­joyed the simple joking words of Batu as He joyfully ate.  Then in mutual affection, Damodara and Sunanda exchanged so much valuable  cloth, jew­els, and golden ornaments that it astonished the people on  earth. Thus, the bratridvitiya celebration ended.Meanwhile, the demigod  Indra developed a headache due to being ig­nored and forgotten by the  Vrajavasis. We will now describe how he tried to get relief and revenge by  employing excessive rains. While sitting among the demigods, Indra felt  sad and distressed seeing that his sacrifice had been cancelled.Burning  with rage, Indra said, "Just see how surprising it is! The intelli­gence  of these cowherd men is just like the animals they tend. They stopped  mypuja just by hearing a few words from a mere child. Even though many  goddesses of learning praise me, those offensive cowherd men did not think  twice about giving up my worship. Have they been overtaken by false  pride?"O virtuous cowherd men! Now you act deviously without any fear of  anyone. Well, I will see how long it lasts. This foolish, arrogant, and  talk­ative child has offended me. Even though you claim He satisfies your  desires and gives you long prosperous lives, we will soon see if He is  really your ever well-wisher." Overcome by revenge and frustration, Indra  considered for a moment how to retaliate against the Vrajavasis. Angry  Indra then released the powerful clouds of universal destruction known as  Samvartaka. Coming before their master, the clouds submitted, "We are your  servants and al­ways ready to execute your order." To encourage His  servants, Indra glanced at them with affection and appreciation as he  addressed them."Hung hoi O my playful speedy clouds, who are famous  throughout the world for distributing profuse rain. Your pride in your  power fills me with strength. Now make me successful by carrying out my  orders. You have the unadulterated mood of destroying the whole creation  within you. But this assignment involves only one small region. Go shake  the earth with your thunder and destroy the village of Vmdavana with a  deluge!" Being released from the task of devastating the universe at a  particular time, Samvartaka and other servants of Indra proudly stepped  forward to accomplish their mission. First a vast bank of clouds,  appearing like a huge patch of moss in the sky, blocked out the sun and  covered Vmdavana in total darkness. Extending from Rasatala to Svargaloka,  the cloud cov­ering looked like the smoky breath exhaled by the Naga  snakes.Released from their bonds, a few ominous clouds, in the sportive  mood of breaking the Kedara Mountain, quickly spread across the sky. These  dense dark clouds appeared as massive as the celestial elephants guard­ing  the quarters of the globe. Another group of dangerous clouds circled  overhead. The clouds, like Mt. Mainaka, the son of the Himalayas,  con­tinually expanded and flew freely in the sky without any fear of being  cut by Indra's millions of thunderbolts.

One fantastically large cloudbank appeared like a second Loka-loka  mountain range. The hard peaks of those clouds continued to grow higher  and higher while simultaneously expanding in all directions. When the  clouds collected they covered all the planetary systems in darkness. Even  the sharpest axe could not cut through the dense network of clouds that  assembled over Vmdavana.


The three worlds appeared to be born out of the darkness created by that  ever-expanding cloudbank. The covering of the universe turned as black as  the soot smeared on the bottom of a pot. However, the universal  disturbances and the attack of the devastating Samvartaka clouds had  practically no effect on Vmdavana, which continually bathes in the  moon­light emanating from Krishna's jewel-like toenails.After earth, water,  fire, air, and so on there is a tenth element known as andha tamasah  (blinding darkness). Everything animate and inert in the ten directions  appears stupefied by this element. It seemed that no one in the world  could see anything. Water dripped from the dome-like covering of the  universe. The water drops moved so fast that they formed a con­tinuous  stream of water speeding through the universe like a raging river breaking  over its dam. Such a thing will never happen again. That torren­tial  downpour seemed like the long hanging branches of the banyan tree of the  sky.The cows sheltered their calves under the blankets of loose skin on  their necks. In fear of the slashing rainwater, the cows kept their eyes  almost closed and their tails hanging straight down. As they shivered  uncontrol­lably from the violent rains, the skin on their backs swelled  up. While standing in this painful condition they looked toward Krishna for  shelter.When the rain hit the horns of the bulls it bounced off and landed  on their thick fatty humps. Breaking into small pearl-like drops, it then  rolled down their broad muscular backs. Alas! Alas! The fierce rainfall  angered and tormented the bulls. Observing the torrents of rain, which  fell in columns as thick as the trunks of full-grown banana trees, the  cowherd men of Vrndavana thought that the devastation had suddenly  arrived. Terrified and weakened, they approached Krishna, who makes everyone  happy.


Full of pain and agony, they said, "O Krishna! You always save us and give  us happiness. Now we are in great danger! Since You are the Lord of  Gokula, You should immediately protect us. Look! Look! The flashing  lightning bolt appears like the forked tongue of an angry snake. The  pound­ing hailstones are pulverizing the life out of the trees. The  lightning bolts entering the water seem like the brilliant fire emitted by  mythical hydras."The clouds roar ferociously as they release torrents of  rain as thick as massive columns. The vast sheets of water are increasing  in volume like the ocean of devastation. The earth is quickly submerging  in the flood, and we cannot distinguish the high ground from the low. Just  look around and see for Yourself. The surabhi cows use their own bodies to  protect their calves from the pelting hailstones. With their tear-filled  eyes they are speaking to You, 'Oh Krishna! Once You saved us from the  devastating forest fire, so please save us from this terrible  rainfall.'"Look at the condition of the bulls! Upon hitting their humps,  the heavy hailstones are being ground into pieces and scattering on the  ground like pearls. Their eyes reddened in rage, the bulls raise their  heads to look angrily at the clouds. Their faces and bodies are completely  drenched in water. Aha! How much they are suffering! This devastation  seems like the personification of a big anartha which we cannot remove.  Only You can deliver us, therefore, we surrender unto You. We are Your  loving kinsmen, so please save us!"

After hearing their anxious pleas and seeing the distress of His cows,  Krishna, whose blossoming lotus eyes are beautiful to behold, considered,  "This must be the work of angry Indra." In a compassionate voice sweeter  than honey, Krishna consoled His family and friends, "Do not be afraid!  Actually this trouble is as significant as a hunger pain is to one who has  just consumed a sumptuous feast. Anyone practicing devotional service can  easily remove all anarthas. The Kinnaras and the demigods glorify this  fact. For your benefit, I will now enact a special pastime to destroy  Indra's mountain of pride."

As the relisher of nectarean rajas, Krishna has a beautiful body, which is  as sweet as the honey in a flower. Without even tightening His cloth He  showed complete indifference to the mighty wrath of foolish Indra.  In­stantly, Krishna picked up Govardhana Hill with one hand and held it  aloft with no more effort than a child takes to hold a mushroom or an  elephant uses to lift a clump of grass.Many loud sounds echoed in all  directions when the mountain rose into the air. The echoes sounded like a  bunch of rowdy children yelling within its many caves. The lifting of  Govardhana Hill produced an angry loud noise that crushed the pride of the  elephants guarding the eight direc­tions. That furious sound roamed around  and around within the covering of the universe. The sound had enough  intelligence to win a wager on whether it could break the long meditation  of Brahma on Brahmaloka. That sound dared to interrupt the uproarious  madhvika wine drinking festival of the old ladies on Patalaloka.The  flowers falling from the trees appeared to be the form of Giriraja's  ecstatic laughter due to being touched by Krishna's lotus hand. Those  fall­ing flowers seemed to be Giriraja's celebrating the destruction of  Indra's fame. Growing higher and higher, the sharp peaks of Giriraja cut  the ominous cloud cover to pieces. The row of trees along the peaks of  Giriraja challenged the trees in Indra's celestial forest. The lions  living on top of Govardhana Hill mistook the hovering clouds for  elephants. Using their powerful sharp claws, they ripped apart that  cluster of elephant clouds. In fear, the clouds ran hither and  thither.Seeing Krishna holding Giriraja aloft with His left hand, Mt.  Kailasa shiv­ered in fright while thinking, "Hey look! Who is this  covering the sky? How could this happen?" Mt. Sumeru panicked. Overwhelmed  by fear, the elephants of the directions jumped in the Manasi Ganga.  Giriraja served Gokula as a jewel-bedecked umbrella that could not be  moved by the fierce winds or pierced by the razor-sharp lightning bolts of  Indra. Balanced on the beautiful emerald pole of Krishna's raised arm,  Giriraja cast a pleasing radiance upon everyone. The glimmering rain  shower com­ing down on all sides seemed like streams of dripping pearls.  While holding Giriraja in one hand, Krishna, whose wonderful behavior  illuminates the world, spoke convincingly to the cowherd community, "Mago!  (O mother) Do not be in anxiety. Father! Do not worry. O friends! Do not  doubt My ability. Giriraja will not fall from My hand. You directly saw  how he personally accepted our worship. Is it then difficult for him to  remain suspended in the sky? Although Giriraja appears to be a huge  immovable mountain, he is transcendentally situated beyond the doubts and  comprehension of this material world. Look how light he is. Even a child  like Me can easily pick him up. Oh! Just see! Giriraja is completely  independent and moving according to his own sweet will. In this matter, I  am but an instrument.


"Therefore you should collect all your property and come under the  mountain. There is no difference between the village of Vrndavana and this  valley below Giriraja. Be happy and stay here peacefully. At the end of  the kalpa everyone in creation gives up their gross bodies, and lives  within the abdomen of Narayana in their subtle bodies. Staying there,  however, you could not enjoy as much fun as you can by living here within  the belly of Giriraja.

"When I lifted the hill, huge chunks of earth fell off the bottom, and  formed a natural boundary wall around the perimeter of Giriraja. This wall  will keep out the torrential rains. Forget about your pleasure gardens and  your attachments to your former residences. Let this place become the  source of joyful pastimes for the cows, gopas, and gopis."The string of  Govardhana-dhari's reassuring words resembled an el­egant necklace made  from the nectar of His voice. Immediately, the eld­erly gopas felt  completely pacified by Krishna's sweet words. Taking their wealth, sons,  wives, cows, and priests, who felt immeasurable happiness and beamed with  matchless beauty, they entered the splendid valley be­neath  Giri-Govardhana. Taking shelter there, they all filled with surprise and  smiled with delight.They clearly saw that the valley beneath Govardhana,  which dazzled attractively in the light, could easily accommodate all  their innumerable cows, animals, and family members. The valley brimmed  with gratifying sense objects to see, touch, taste, and so on. That divine  place was the very ornament of the earth. Its purity and opulence exceeded  the wealth of the subterranean heavenly planets like Sutala. Fields of  rich green bar­ley spread in all directions, and many lakes full of  crystal clear water stood here and there.


The cows stayed near the border of the improvised town and pastured on  fields full of fresh green grass. The Vrajavasis stood around peacefully  in different groups. Some cowherd men mixed with the brahmanas, and the  elderly married ladies stayed with their daughters. Radhika and other  prominent young married gopis gathered beside them. Krishna's intimate  friends like Batu remained by His side, and Nanda, Yasoda, and Balarama  stood slightly in front of Him.

Thus the venerable Vrajavasis relished great joy associating intimately  with Krishna. They no longer felt any fear or discomfort from Indra's  del­uge, which threatened to destroy the whole world. The rain falling  from the roaring clouds sounded like water pouring from the mouths of many  large water pots.

Although situated in different directions, all the Vrajavasis gazed to  their hearts content at the gorgeous lotus face of Giridhari, the lifter  of Govardhana Hill. Each devotee saw that Krishna was looking directly at  him. Feeling relieved, the illustrious brahmanas offered abundant  bless­ings to the blissful younger brother of Balarama. Krishna descended on  earth to perform His transcendental pastimes and to crush the pride of the  demons and the demigods.

While holding up Govardhana Hill, Krishna was surrounded by all His loving  associates. Taking advantage of the intimate setting, they gazed at Krishna  with joyful faces, prayed for His victory, or affectionately smelled His  head. Being saturated with parental affection, Mother Rohini firmly  embraced her son Balarama, who always gives immense pleasure to His  parents.Both the submissive gopis and the contrary ones like Radhika  smiled blissfully while looking at Krishna with love-laden glances. The  gopis always play with Krishna and enjoy love sports in the forests of  Vrndavana. While gazing upon Him, they looked like thirsty cakori birds  continually drink­ing the ambrosial radiance of His moon-like face. With  unblinking eyes they took Krishna within their hearts and lovingly embraced  Him. During the festival of lifting Govardhana Hill everyone tasted the  greatest ec­stasy.To lighten the heart of his beloved friend Krishna, Batu  said, "O dearmost friend of the whole world! Please listen to my words. By  my brahman tejas (spiritual potency) I will fill You with happiness. When  I am here as Your friend, why are You troubling Yourself by lifting  Giriraja? O lotus-eyed one! Just order me and I will hold up this great  mountain on the tip of my golden stick. You must be exhausted from holding  the hill. So now relax and take some rest while I hold the hill."

Vrajesvari Yasoda then addressed her son, "O my darling child! You always  act impudently due to the force of Your uncontrolled senses. For years, we  peacefully observed the Indra yajna, but then You abruptly stopped it.  Disregarding the demigods never brings auspiciousness. How can one find  fortune if he shows enmity toward the demons or the demi­gods? In the  presence of these two fears how can we enjoy living here?"

Although Krishna's body is inexhaustible and ever blissful, Yasoda thought  that He had overworked Himself. Considering that, she expressed her  motherly affection by reaching up to lovingly touch His lotus hand that  held the hill. While doing this she said, "Aho! How can Your hand, which  is as pure and soft as fresh butter, bear the heavy weight of this  mountain without any other help or support? Hung hoi O Giriraja, please be  com­passionate and give me a boon! If you are actually some worshipable  god, then do something to become soft and lightweight so that Krishna will  not feel any distress. O honorable one! All my son's actions are in  accordance with the instructions of sastras and saintly persons."

Batu said, "Mother! Do not speak like this! How can you say Krishna is in  distress? Listen, what good has that angry Indra done for us? He brutally  attacked us with his dense dark clouds and fierce lightning bolts. Now  just appreciate the dazzling sweetness that Krishna has manifested in His  pas­time of lifting Giri-Govardhana. Had Indra not become angry, then we  would not have had the chance to relish this nectar through our eyes."

Mother Yasoda replied to Batu, "O bold one! Holding a heavy load over the  head can never be a show of sweetness. Lifting the enormous weight of  Giriraja will cause one to become distressed and disabled. Just see! The  locks of curly hair on Krishna's forehead are wet from perspira­tion. His  face has dried out and become pale like a lotus wilted by the snow. His  hands and feet have a ruddy color. How can a mother's heart, 'O Siva!  Siva!' tolerate seeing such hardship?"

Krishna said, "Mother! There cannot be -anything more fun than this. Why are  you worried about Me for nothing? Just see, the great mount of Govardhana  is floating on his own in the open sky. I told you before that this body  of Mine is but an instrument of his will."

Yasoda replied, "My dear son! That may true. But how can You not be tired  after standing here for so long, and holding that mountain with Your  raised arm? O intelligent one! I will believe what you said if Govardhana  gives up the joyful association of Your lotus hand, and then flies around  the sky playing on his own."Batu said, "O Queen of Vrndavana! Don't you  know that this great mountain is sitting on the lotus hand of Krishna by the  strength of my man­tras and special powers? Therefore my friend is not  feeling any pain from holding Giriraja. This is natural because everyone  is favorably disposed toward the Lord of their hearts."Yasoda said, "O  impudent one! What kind of nonsense are you speak­ing? I am burning in  anxiety over my son. His tendency is to act indepen­dently without caring  for any good instructions. And now you come here, make jokes, and laugh  about it."

Nanda Maharaja interjected, "Why are you scolding Batu? In this world, a  person who is expert in diplomacy will use very affectionate words to  encourage one in such a trying situation. So understanding the need of the  time, Batu spoke appropriately. Besides that, our dear son very much  appreciates the words of Batu."


Meanwhile, the rest of the Vrajavasis stood around Giridhari admiring the  sweetness of His gorgeous transcendental form. Due to their affec­tion for  Krishna, the sinless Vrajavasis transgressed ordinary etiquette, and talked  loudly among themselves about His extraordinary beauty.

One Vrajavasi said, "Up to this time, we have never really appreciated how  Krishna's elegant body is the very ornament of the entire earth. Look! Look!  As Krishna displays His attractive three-fold bending form, His left side  stretches up broad and straight, without showing the three lines on His  belly. His right heel is raised, and His left foot appears to be kissing  the earth. His well-shaped left knee is slightly contracted, and His waist  is gently curved. His garland and uttariya (thin caddar) are swinging to  the left side. It is very pleasant to see His arm pit as He effortlessly  holds His

strong left arm aloft.


"His right thumb is tucked into the refulgent red cloth wrapped around His  handsome hips, which are enriched with the three beautiful lines of His  belly. Just see how the beauty of Krishna's right side decorates the earth.  In a merry mood, Krishna glances lovingly at us as His eyes roam here and  there. The pollen from the dew-covered blue lotuses tucked over His ears  reflects exquisitely on His shining cheeks. Even though He must be tired  from lifting Giriraja, Krishna is delighting our minds with the nectar of  His gentle smile. Today His beautiful face is more dazzling than  anything."

A second Vrajavasi said, "O look! Look! It is a great mystery that since  Krishna has not moved for a long time, His ankle-bells, which crush all  false pride, solve all problems, and deliver one from all dangers, have  now be­come silent just like a dumb person. Although they are awake, those  ankle-bells seem just like a pair of swans sleeping in a front of a blue  lotus flower. Just see! The ankle-bells are absorbed in silent meditation  just like a self-realized soul. But when Krishna lifted Giriraja their  meditation broke and they moved slightly. The demigods praised that  pleasant jin­gling sound and came to serve it. Seeing that, the  ankle-bells again fell silent, feeling apprehensive about their sudden  movement."


Someone else said, "O look at Krishna! While holding Giriraja nonchalantly  in one hand, He holds His pastime flute in His other hand. Pressing it  gently to His lips, He plays soft sweet tunes that fill us with  exhilaration."Noticing this, Batu said with alarm, "O my friend! Do not be  so daring! Do not play Your flute. How will You protect Your friends today  if Giriraja becomes ecstatic from hearing the sweet melodies of Your flute  and falls off Your hand? Your flute has the power to destroy everything.  Simply hearing it, mountains melt into rivers and rivers turn stone. Aho!  Look! It can do many incredible things."

The cowherd boys said, "O Kusumasava! May this mountain maintain His  patience and keep protecting us from the calamitous inundation. If  Giriraja melts into a river, he himself will become the very source of our  destruction. But that will not happen. A person with great patience may  sometimes thrill with ecstasy, but he quickly recovers his composure.  There is not the slightest fear that Giriraja may change his position.  Just relish the honey nectar of Krishna's flute and give up your  restlessness."

Another person said, "Look! Just see the foolishness of Indra! Even though  He is supposed to be a well-wisher of all, he has shown anger to such an  innocent person. Within his heart he has enmity against Krishna. O lifter of  Giriraja! Indra tries to destroy our dynasty with his lightning bolts,  whereas Krishna always does well for the world. Indra merely guards the  eastern direction, whereas Krishna protects all the directions. Why has Hari  (a second name for Indra) become so shameless by assuming the same name as  our Lord Hari?"Someone else said, "How astounding! Before us we see the  deliverer from the inundation, the clouds causing the inundation,  difficult times due to the inundation, and the very ocean of inundation!  Are we being bewildered by some illusion? Or has someone cast a magic  spell over us? Although we are in such a dangerous condition, still we  have not been defeated."

One person said, "Though we are in the middle of a terrible devasta­tion,  we are delighting in a conversation full of joking and laughter. While  relishing these nectarean talks we do not feel any anxiety or  disturbance."One Vrajavasi said, "O Radhika, Your face is superbly  beautiful. Do not make Your eyebrows dance while Krishna is holding up  Govardhana. For that will severely agitate His mind. Then His arm will  start shaking violently and cause the mountain to immediately fall off His  hand. Please do not cause such a perilous situation."Radhika joked with  Syamala-sakhi, a witty, sweet speaker expert in making people laugh.  Glancing shyly from the corner of Her eyes, Radharani said, "Hey doe-eyed  Syame! Do not infuse your ecstasy in My heart. Calm down and control your  mind."One gopi said, "Krishna, who turned the king of mountains into a play  ball, must have tremendous patience. His clever behavior is beyond  com­pare."


Another gopi replied, "Alas! Alas! Your words are drawing exactly the  opposite conclusion to my intentions. So now listen to your praises. Oh  enchanting one! I will accept that the holder of Giriraja has great  pa­tience if He can keep His patience after seeing the splendid beauty of  your full breasts."

A third sakhi said, "O sakhi, stop joking! Krishna's greatness is His  ability to satisfy everyone with His unique sweetness. He is especially  pleasing when He teases wanton ladies like us."One sakhi said, "Just see  how Krishna holds up the mountain with His left hand while softly playing  the flute with His right hand. He casts loving side long glances on  everyone and shakes His head pleasantly while lis­tening to His friends."

Then one dear sakhi told Radhika, "Listen carefully to my words. While all  the Vrajavasis relish the pastime of constantly looking at Krishna, He is  absorbed in glancing at You alone. Just see how His body has erupted with  ecstatic symptoms such as tears, trembling, and thrill bumps. But the  other Vrajavasis think these transformations are due to His lifting  Giriraja."One sakhi said, "Yes! What you said is absolutely true. Please  take this pearl necklace as a reward for your realization."While admiring  the infinite loveliness of Radhika, Krishna enveloped in bliss, trembled,  and perspired profusely. Observing these ecstatic changes, one gopi  pointed to the cowherd men and told her girlfriend. "Hey look! The gopas  think that Giridhari is feeling tired. In a mood of compassion, they have  raised their sticks above their heads to help Him hold up the hill."Seeing  the prominent cowherd men endeavoring to hold up Giriraja, Radhika, whose  face outshines the moon, covered Her head with Her veil and looked shyly  at the ground. Then, unseen by Her sakhis, Radhika beamed a sweet, gentle  smile to bathe Krishna in a shower of nectar.While looking at the cowherd  men Batu said, "O residents of Vrndavana! Do not be afraid! You are just  scratching the body of Giriraja with your sticks. But do not think that  you are holding up the hill. Krishna is not the least bit tired. Besides, He  is the brother of Balarama who is famous for His unlimited strength. The  pure and potent body of Krishna emits a daz­zling radiance. Only a sudden  calamity could reduce that effulgence. O my friend Krishna! Observing the  trembling of Your body, I can understand that the beautiful face of that  famous sakhi Radhika has put You into great distress."The prince of  Vrndavana is the abode of unfathomable attributes. His face is as fresh as  a blue lotus flower bathed in the soft moonlight. When He smiles  attractively His beautiful teeth sparkle like a thousand rays of light. A  radiant pearl necklace adorns His chest. Krishna reveals the ecstasy in His  heart by gently moving His reddish lips.


After listening to the playful words of Batu, Krishna responded sweetly to  the delight of His intimate friends. He said, "The cowherd men have a very  favorable attitude toward Me, therefore, I always fulfill their desires.  Why are you laughing at them? The Vrajavasis do not know the  incon­ceivable power of My body. Nor do they know that the famous Radhika  is actually one of My matchless forms. Radha's body is non-different from  Mine and She is My favorite lover. The gopas attempt to hold up Giriraja  simply proclaims their parental love for Me. Indeed, their action is quite  befitting! What could be more pleasurable than this."

Then Krishna spoke to the gopas, "Ho! Ho! O gopasl You are famous for  reposing all your love in Me. So why do you behave like this? Even though  the great Mahadeva, the father of Ganesh, respects you, you are acting  like common men. Give up this wearisome endeavor. Just look at Me! You can  plainly see that I am not the least bit tired."

Just like a cow hankering to see her calf, Yasoda stepped forward and  spoke affectionately to her son, "O beloved one! The day has moved  along,and You appear afflicted and lackluster from not eating. Your belly  has caved in and Your jeweled belt has slipped off. Seeing that Your lotus  face has withered from fasting, the cows refuse to eat anything or move an  inch from here, even though nearby there are fields rich with grains.  "Therefore, I appeal to You because You are very compassionate. Please  stop playing artistically on Your flute, and drop Your arm so I can feed  You with my hand. One whose actions are exemplary will adjust his  be­havior according to the conditions. I have brought You some warm soft  cakes and tasty creamy yogurt with thick skin on top. Now take these  delicious items along with Rama and Your friends."Batu said, "O my dear  friend! Your mother spoke correctly. You should never go against her.  Moreover, I am also upset by hunger."Krishna, the crest-jewel of relishers,  said, "O Mother! I do not feel like a single moment has passed. Yet why do  others think this short time to be so long? But since one should not  disobey his superiors, I think it is proper for Me to gladly eat from your  hand."

Meanwhile, holding a brilliant, flashing lightning bolt in his hand, Indra  sped through the sky on his elephant carrier. Though sitting on his  el­ephant carrier, Airavata, Indra actually rode upon the chariot of his  an­ger. Showing his unflinching affection toward the rain clouds, Indra  cracked the sky and made everyone cry with a tumultuous thundering  sound.Hissing like an angry snake, Indra raced to Vrndavana to survey the  situation. Since he had already sent the Samvartaka clouds a few days  before, he assumed Vrndavana must now be totally demolished. Aston­ishment  seized Indra's mind upon seeing the dense peaks of Govardhana piercing the  huge Samvartaka clouds and soaring above them. The deer, birds, and other  living entities of Vrndavana wandered about happily, unaffected by Indra's  torrents of rain. Clusters of white clouds completely covered the base of  Govardhana. These clouds enhanced the beauty of Giriraja as they washed  the mountain with the rains of devastation. Giriraja looked like a huge  umbrella, and the clouds seemed like a decorative fringe of pearls  ornamenting that umbrella.While observing this, Indra, thinking himself  the supreme controller, decided to exhibit the limit of his anger. Cruel  hearted Indra disrespected both the cows and the Lord. In order to destroy  the land of cows, he instigated the clouds of devastation to thunder  menacingly and pour in­cessant rain on Vrndavana. Out of fear, the clouds  dutifully followed the directions of Indra. With the mood of a determined  fighter, the furious storm tried to blow away Giriraja with severely high  winds.Shri Hari, His effulgent jewel-like body washed by the moonlight of  His smile, instantly removed whatever hardship Giriraja felt from the  light­ning bolts, heavy hailstones, profuse rains, and high piercing  winds. By seeing Krishna's effulgence and feeling the sweet breath from His  lustrous lotus face, Giriraja felt totally relieved while relishing the  exciting adven­tures of the Lord.Outside the shelter of the hill, the  fearsome thunderbolts crisscrossing the sky looked like creepers of light  dangling in the air. Ominous dark clouds loaded with rain flashed with  occasional rainbows. Beneath Giriraja, the cloud-like Mukunda Himself and  the steady streaks of lightning gopis created another type of storm. The  rainbow appeared as the peacock feather on Krishna's crown, and the stream  of Krishna's beauty flowed like the constant rain. The only difference was  that underneath the mountain Krishna's brilliant kaustubha gem served as the  effulgent sun.Krishna is the perfect conjugal lover. His face is a spotless  moon and His eyes are always roaming seductively. To completely remove the  Vrajavasis' anxiety about His fatigue from lifting Giriraja, Krishna played  sweetly again on His murali.

Hearing that ambrosial sound, one Vrajavasi said, "Look! Look! A blue  lotus hangs over Krishna's left ear. The pleasing vibration of His bliss­ful  flute spreads in all directions. In this joyful pastime, His creeper-like  right eyebrow rises slightly, as if saying, 'What can you say about My  left hand which is effortlessly holding up Giriraja?' Thus glittering with  excel­lence, the all-attractive Giridhari displays His sweet power."


By the mercy of Govardhana Hill the Vrajavasis did not feel the least bit  disturbed. Rather, they tasted endless happiness passing their time  absorbed in loving thoughts of Krishna. This pastime completely astonished  the brahmanas and other devotees fixed in neutrality (santa-rasa). Radhika  and the gopis in madhurya rasa exhibited their deep love for Krishna. Among  His friends (sakhya-rasa), the jokers like Madhumangala pleased Krishna by  laughing and merry-making. Intimate friends like Subala continually  enthused and encouraged Him. Raktak, Patrak, and others in dasya-rasa  constantly served Krishna with affection. Thus the different associates of  Krishna delighted in their individual loving relationships with Him.Mother Yasoda and others overcome with parental affection (vatsalya-rasa),  however, felt very sad to see Krishna like this. To please her son, Yasoda  tried to offer Krishna some juicy camphorated tambula made of cardamom,  nutmeg, cloves, lime paste, catechu, and betel nut. Wrapped in a dark  green pan leaf, this expertly made tambula had the power to aid digestion,  remove anxiety, and fill one with pleasure. Holding it in her lotus palm,  Yasoda tenderly offered it to Krishna while pleading, "O my darling  Damodara! Please stop playing Your melodious murali. The sound of the  flute cannot fill Your stomach. Please take this and remove my anxiety.  Why are you disturbing my mind by not eating? Now eat this wonderful  tambula which will enchant Your mind. If You do not want it,then at least eat something that You like very much. You have passed many  days without eating, so do not delay anymore. If You are waiting for the  rain to stop, then please consider that Your brother Balarama is very much  afflicted by hunger. Since You will do anything for Your brother, please  honor my request and accept this tambula."After saying this, Yasoda  called, "Subala! You are overflowing with love for Krishna. Since you are  also the dear object of His affection, will you please offer this tambula  to Krishna?" Saying this, Yasoda put the tambula in his hand.Krishna's dear  friend Subala felt boundless joy as he held the tambula in one hand and  removed Krishna's flute with his other hand. Taking the edge of his cloth,  he gently cleansed Krishna's lotus face, which was adorned with aguru and  slightly reddish in hue. Seeing Krishna's lips turn red from chew­ing the  tambula offered by Subala, Yasoda smiled in happiness.


Outside the umbrella of Giriraja, the huge cloud formation sent by  furi­ous Indra poured incessant rains and blew fierce hurricane winds. Yet  not even one particle of dust washed off the surface of Giriraja. The  deer, birds, animals, and even the leaves on the trees remained totally  unaf­fected by the devastating storm. The deluge, which assailed the earth  af­ter being brought from the ocean by the clouds, again ran back to the  sea. The discomfort the clouds underwent from swallowing the ocean water  and vomiting it back was the only result of their proposed calamity.The  storm tried his best to show off his power. But he soon became totally  exhausted from pouring profuse rain. Alas! Alas! The clouds re­treated and  fell at the feet of their master. Illusioned by his rage, Indra felt no  fatigue as he continued to attack Giriraja. Being blinded by anger, he  finally lost all his intelligence and went totally blind.

The torrential rains and cyclone winds harassed Vrndavana continually for  seven days. Although repeatedly trying to fulfill the order of Indra,  whose intelligence was more crooked than millions of lightning bolts, the  clouds could not destroy or even slightly disturb the people of Vrndavana.  The big clouds and their assistants almost died from their hard labor to  please Indra. Although pulled down from his platform of false pride and  defeated, the shameful Indra retained his fighting spirit. Those seven  days felt like seven milleniums of intense pain for Indra. Yet the  Vrajavasis saw it as seven joy-filled hours. Oh just see the won­derful  splendor of the Lord's divine prowess which transcends the com­prehension  of even Brahma and Siva! Although Govardhana Hill is im­movable, it rested  on the hand of Krishna.


For seven long days, the monsoon rains and horrific, earth-shaking winds  tortured the people of the world with bitter suffering and untold  miseries. The serene and peaceful Giriraja, however, was not the least bit  disturbed.Being constantly bathed by the rains and anointed with the  fragrance of Krishna's divine body, Giriraja looked absolutely radiant and  beautiful throughout the whole ordeal.By the mercy of Krishna the danger  finally ended. In the distance, the Vrajavasis saw the gateways and roof  top rooms of their houses glittering attractively from being washed by the  heavy rains. A fresh clear sky ap­peared to fill all directions with  auspiciousness. The people of Vrndavana felt they had just emerged from a  deep, dark well of calamity and come to the light of good fortune.The  earth planet thought it was again sitting on the tusks of Adi Varaha. The  plants and creepers sprouted anew and unfurled fresh leaves. Just as one  cured of the disease of insanity attains peace and no longer suffers from  epileptic fits, similarly, the wind, now freed from the disease of  dev­astation, blew gently. The rivers, the wives of the ocean, again  flowed slowly and respectfully toward their husbands. Just as the forceful  pushings of the mind subside as one advances on the path of God  realization, simi­larly, the blasting clouds dissipated to leave a clear  sky behind them. After aborting seven children represented by the seven days and nights,  the wife of time now gave birth to a beautiful son appearing as the  auspi­cious eighth day. On that day, the Supreme Lord Giridhari said, "The  fierce wind and rain has now ceased, and the sky is totally free from the  clouds of devastation. Free from the thick covering of mud, the earth is  now dry and smooth. After falling unconscious for one week, the sun opened  his eyes. O residents Vrndavana, your village has returned to its normal  state. Now it is time to come out from beneath the mountain."


After hearing this, everyone assembled in a happy mood and lead out the  cows. The cows considered themselves fortunate because they got to relish  the sweetness of Krishna's face for seven continuous days. They lost  interest in other things that had previously pleased them. When the  cow­herd boys called them out they delayed for a while, and then shot out  like a volley of arrows. But when they saw Krishna still under the hill,  they quickly ran back and surrounded Him. Immediately, Krishna drove them  out again by glancing at them with the compassion of a friend.From all  directions, the smooth skinned, pleasant looking herds of cows streamed  out from the valley under Govardhana Hill. As they came up they looked  like the expanded hood of Sesa Naga rising out of Patalaloka, or a sheet  of moonshine hiding in a cave out of fear of darkness, or like matted  locks of diffused light being born from the crystal mountain of Giriraja.


Thus induced by Krishna's words, the cowherd men gave up their fear and  smiled cheerfully. With great enthusiasm they left the temporary village  beneath Giriraja. The elated gopis cast veiled glances at Krishna as they  walked out from the hill. The effulgent gopis seemed like the rays of a  brilliant light visible even in the daytime, or the dazzling rays  emanating from the valuable jewels below the mountain, or the glowing  light of the ruby atop the hood of a naga snake.After the cowherd boys  left, Krishna set the hill down exactly in its previ­ous location. He tossed  Giriraja off His hand just like a child throwing a flower ball. Then Krishna  met His friends for more pastimes of wandering in Vrndavana. Overwhelmed  with ecstatic love, the residents of Vrndavana came forward to greet Krishna  according to their individual relationships with Him.His eyes pouring  forth tears of love, Balarama warmly embraced Krishna. Mother Yasoda said,  "Alas! Alas! My son's body has been severely weak­ened from bearing such a  heavy weight." Using her lotus-palm, Yasoda massaged Krishna's left arm and  kissed His hand affectionately. Rohini, who had attained the summit of  parental affection, offered arati to Krishna and Balarama with an  artistically designed, jeweled ghee lamp.With their hearts, which were  abodes of deep love for Krishna, the house­wives of Vrndavana offered Him  their full blessings. Then they worshiped Krishna with yogurt, rice paddy,  and fresh grass. The potent brahmanas and their attractive wives offered  boons and words of praise. Sananda and the other elderly men bound by the  ropes of intense parental affection em­braced the boys and smelled their  heads.The beloved gopis and their associates, dyed in pure love and  covered by shyness, also honored Krishna and Balarama. They worshiped Them  with their doe-eyed glances and their lotus faces blossoming with desire.  While they embraced Krishna and Balarama within their minds, their lips  shone attractively with sweet seductive smiles.As the spring season is  ornamented with the months of Caitra and Vaisakha which are full of  fragrant flowers, similarly, demigods such as the Siddhas,Vidyadharas,  Gandharvas, and Kumpurusas showered flow­ers in great delight while  singing the glories of Krishna.The demigods prayed, "All glories to the son  of Nanda Maharaja! All glories to holy abode of Vrndavana, which abounds  in blissful mellows! O Krishna! You are enriched by superb qualities. The  pure taste of serving Your lotus feet is the source of unlimited bliss in  the hearts of realized souls. Your all-attractive, transcendental body is  concentrated liquid nec­tar. The moonlight of Your nails, which shines  like brilliant rubies, takes away all the miseries of Your intimate  associates. There is no limit to Your fame. Hey Shridhara! Hey sober one!  Hey superexcellent hero of Vrndavana! O gopa with a bluish body! May You  always be victorious!"Anyone who once says, 'I am Yours! And from this day  forward I com­pletely surrender unto You' is immediately delivered from  material existence by Your mercy. It is impossible for us to calculate how  much You reward one who serves Your enchanting lotus feet, which remove  the miseries of repeated birth and death. O beloved of Gokula! You are  served, worshiped, and glorified by pure devotees who are eternally  liberated and full of knowledge. O Lord of all the demigods! Your  transcendental behavior astonishes the entire universe. We repeatedly  offer our obei­sances unto You."O Krishna, all glories unto You! Indra, who  is especially angry, crooked, impudent, and falsely proud, misbehaved by  cruelly attacking Vrndavana with his Samvartaka clouds. The Vrajavasis  prayed to You for protection, and You saved them from destruction by  holding up Giriraja with the splendid pole of Your arm. In this pastime,  Giriraja sat in Your hand just like a play ball. You offered Your lotus  hand to Giriraja as a wonderful bed."You turned Indra's mountain of pride  into an insignificant pebble. Just as a crest jewel is firmly fixed in the  crown of a king, similarly, those opposed to You are tightly bound in the  prison of material existence. Alas! What is the destiny of one full of  false pride? O friend of the Vrajavasis! O ocean of compassion! O Lord of  the three worlds who wan­ders throughout the creation! You personally  maintain the surrendered souls by Your inconceivable potencies. But those  bound in the prison house of pride never attain the fortune of serving  Your lotus feet."O Lord, all victory unto You! You have sown the seed of  conjugal love within the hearts of the gopis. O You, whose elegant crown  is adorned with a peacock feather glistening attractively like a beautiful  rainbow. You constantly churn the mellows of love into a condensed form,  and then taste that bliss with Your intimate devotees.


"Without a doubt, Your body is totally transcendental. It is the origin of  creation and ornamented with compassion. Your body is the source of  unlimited glories and is the shelter of endless spiritual euphoria. You  are the embodiment of fortune for the adept yogis seeking spiritual  ecstasy in their hearts.

"Appearing fresh and ever-youthful, You always take pleasure in  satis­fying the residents of Vrndavana. Your body is the personification  of com­plete jubilation and You are forever full of happiness. You  perfectly ex­ecute each and every one of Your actions. All glories unto to  You! You are always yearning for the love of Your devotees. Your enemies  consume themselves by envying You. When demons oppose you, You playfully  taunt them. You are known as Syamasundara because Your spiritual body  re­sembles the hue of a beautiful blue rain cloud.


"The devotees, who are like honeybees at Your lotus feet, have no de­sire  for economic development, sense gratification, or salvation. One engaged  in serviig You never tries to enjoy husband, wife, son, and so on. For a  devotee, Tou alone are the only wife, husband, child, teacher, and wealth.  You are their fame, pride, and the very meaning of their lives."Of course,  You are known only by Your prema bhaktas. Although we demigods attempt to  glorify You, we do not really know You. You are far beyond the reach of  prayers. Your effulgence derides the radiance of the clouds. You tale away  the sufferings of the distressed. Your enchanting transcendental body  surges with waves of amorous love. You turn Your enemies into  insignificant beings. Your splendid moon-like face smashes Candra's pride  :o pieces, and Your presence makes Vrndavana beautiful. You remove all  other aspirations from one who surrenders unto You. You are restless with  hankering to ever delight in love. All glories to You! All glories to  You!"O gentle-eyed one! Your beautiful eyes have forcefully captured the  splendor of the lotus. O one who allures the eyes with the camara fan of  Your artistic hair style. O lotus-eyed one! Your sweet lips deride the  taste of ripe bimba fruits. You give bliss and elegance to the world. Your  glitter­ing teeth, more attractive than kunda flowers, mock the brilliance  of a row of pearls. 0 effulgent one! Your cheerful smile shines like  twinkling stars. All glories unto You! "Your singing and flute playing  unfold many erotic pastimes. Seeing ' You saturates the mind and heart  with ecstasy. You are decorated with glimmering golden earrings that swing  to and fro, and reflect splendidly on Your soft cheeks. Your opulent  ornaments accent Your exquisite beauty. "The bees hum loudly as they hover  above the garland draped on Your powerful broad chest. That soft pure  garland is sprinkled with pollen and drops of honey. Out of Your infinite  compassion, You fill the hearts of Your devotees with delight. All glories  to You!"You are the abode of all desirable beauty. The lines of Laksmi  compli­ment Your enchanting chest. Your garland swings out of fear and  Your necklaces move like waves. Your handsome chest induces lusty desires  within the impenetrable hearts of chaste housewives. Seeing Your own  reflection in a mirror, Your pride increases like a sporting new Cupid.  Your chest is further beautified by Your arms which resemble the elegant  trunk of a baby elephant. All glories to You!"O chief advisor of the  cowherd men! You are their leader and only shelter. O beloved son of Nanda  Maharaja! You are glorious and vener­able. You alcne can remove the dense  pride of Indra. Please make us mirthful by bestowing Your mercy. Brahma  praised You for killing the demons drunk with power. We demigods can never  conquer You in battle, so please, therefore, rule us according to Your  free will. "You remove the miseries from the three worlds, stop the cycle  of birth and death, and delight the hearts of Your devotees. A peacock  feather decorates Your brilliant crown. You sport in the forest groves  along the bank of the Kalindi. You destroy the mode of ignorance. We  worship Your limbs which glisten like the branches of a tamala tree. Your  brilliant dark blue form derides a mountain of kajala. All glories to you!  Please makes us intensely attached to You and engage us in Your service.  Free us from the control of lust and keep us under Your control."Please  destroy the fear of repeated birth and death. You withhold Your kindness  from the cruel and wicked, therefore, please remove the disease of  desiring honor and distinction. Please make us fortunate by manifest­ing  fully in our hearts. Hey learned one! Your wandering in the kunjas of  Vrndavana excites the mind and exhilarates the heart! You shine  bril­liantly like the autumn moon, and Your gentle smile is alive with  pas­times. The witty words flowing from Your mouth produce infinite  variet­ies of intimate mellows."You are always anxious to relish emotional  ecstasies within Your heart. You are famous throughout the Vedas for  dispelling doubts and solving disputes. Your pleasing words fill the ears  with waves of loving flavors. Your inner joy arises from pure love. You  are a mine of transcendental splendor! Your roving eyes, which mock  blossoming lotuses, are slightly reddish due to the intoxication of lust.  Seeing Your eyes pleases the eyes of everyone. As the reservoir of mercy,  You deliver the entire world from distress and dangers."You establish  rules and regulations to create good fortune for the people of the world.  You sit on the lotus of the heart of a devotee who glorifies You with pure  love. But when You get angry, You can act like Yamaraja to easily crush  the prowess of an insubordinate servant like King Indra. You are decorated  with the rare jewel of formidability. You fearlessly lifted Govardhana,  and stood like a graceful dancer effortlessly holding the mountain in Your  lotus hand. The white lotus tucked over Your ear re­sembles a conchshell,  and Your earrings glitter like sunshine. You are famous for satisfying the  devotees who desire to see Your magnificent form."You are known by men and  demigods. You mystify both the moving and non-moving. You are the  indomitable force! With the pinky finger of Your left hand You held up the  vast mountain of Govardhana. Colorful varieties of loving moods enhance  Your pure character. O illustrious one! Although the Vraja gopis are Your  most confidential lovers, You uphold the strictest codes of morality. You  compassionately protected Gokula from the clouds of devastation that  assailed Your beloved Vrndavana with floods, lightning bolts, and torrents  of rain. Abounding in kindness, You always do good for everyone and  satisfy all desires. O skillful one! Your youthful elegance conquers the  splendor a cloudbank. You appear in this world to bestow Your blessings,  and violently suppress opposition to pure dharma."You dress in gorgeous,  glimmering golden garments which outshine the pollen of kadamba flowers.  You are the wisest among all wise men. You conquered the crafty Indra and  shattered his false pride. May You, who affectionately protected the  residents of Gokula by lifting Giriraja, be the continual object of our  glorification."O Lord! Just with Your hands You easily pulverized the  pride of invin­cible demons like Bakasura, Putana, Vastasura, and others.  Like a pow­erful snake, You instantly subdued Your enemies such as  Aghasura. You demolished the pride of the angry Lord Brahma. You protected  the Yamuna by banishing Kaliya with Your forceful dancing. O beautiful  one! You courageously saved Your friends from the forest fire by putting  them in illusion."O Lord! Whenever You associate intimately with the  gopis, Your mind becomes agitated to enjoy conjugal pastimes due to the  intensity of their pure love. We saw this tendency of Yours when You stole  the clothes of the Vraja kumaris. In this humorous pastime You captivated  the minds of the innocent girls with Your sweet pleasant words. By  accepting the offer­ing of delicious foods from the yajna patnis, You  reciprocated with their love. You are the abode of blissful festivals."O  intelligent one! You saved the world from the deluge of destruction! You  removed Indra's pride by stopping his worship and by defeating him when he  attacked Vrndavana. You satisfied the desires of everyone by lifting the  king of all mountains. You bestow happiness according to one's mood of  love toward You."O Lord, You please the eyes of everyone! You forgive even  the lowest, most offensive living entities within the universe if they  surrender unto You. O Lord, You always increase the happiness of Your  intimate ser­vants. You manifested dreadful boldness by uprooting Indra's  Nanda-kanana forest with the peak of Giriraja."When will we fallen ones be  eligible to hear Your auspicious glories? You possess adorable beauty and  deserve to be worshiped by everyone. O Lord! Who can completely know all  of Your unlimited attributes? No one in the universe has the qualities  that You do. O embodiment of all pleas­ing traits! You are inconceivable  to the non-devotees, but You are the benevolent maintainer for one who  surrenders to You in distress or hu­mility."We beg You, therefore, to  please show compassion and protect us. Please beautify and enlighten us so  that we can surrender unto You and drown in the ocean of Your blissful  service. Ignorance and illusion have nearly killed us. Please fill us with  detachment and ever-increasing love for You. Please destroy our wicked  thoughts and empower us to properly glorify You."O Lord! We offer our  obeisances unto you. Your splendor is immea­surable! O embodiment of  compassion! If You give us Your mercy then we can take shelter of Your  lotus feet, offer our respects, and chant Your holy name. All glories to  You! You continually perform exciting pastimes in the hearts Your pure  devotees."You always give pleasure to the king and queen of Vrndavana.  Your wandering through the forests of Vrndavana nourishes it with the full  extent of Your compassion. You crush the conceit born of false ego. At  every moment You give joy to Your devotees. To protect Your own  com­munity, You are ready to destroy millions of enemies.


"O younger brother of Baladeva! You are always fixed in the highest bliss.  O worshipable one! You are the superexcellent master of all arts.  Everything about Your character is pure and sublime. You astonish the  heart with Your sensational pastimes. Although You are all pervading, You  are rarely perceived.

"You are famous as Shri Hari because You remove all bad behavior from Your  servitors. You instantly favor a repentant soul who sincerely prays, 'O my  Lord! You are the deliverer from material bondage. For so long I have not  served you. Now please accept me and engage me in Your loving service.'  You give inner strength to the repentant and take pleasure in protecting  Your devotees. You are an ocean of the finest qualities."You obliterate  the pride of Cupid. Radhika always serves You and pleases You more than  anyone else. Shri Radha, who has perfectly mas­tered the sixty-four arts,  is the main support for all Your astounding tran­scendental adventures.  You created a jovial celebration by lifting Govardhana Hill. The mind of a  humble and submissive person always dwells in You alone.


"You give everything in charity. Among millions of wise and venerable  demigods like Brahma and Siva, You alone have the power to award all  auspiciousness and give ecstatic love to every living entity. Just by a  glance You can enlighten and liberate anyone. You fulfill the desires of  one who is anxious to glorify Your transcendental pastimes."Whenever You  hear jingling ankle-bells and the loud sound of various percussion  mstruments such as the din-din drum played by the gopis, Your heart leaps  with a desire to relish intimate pleasure pastimes. Your char­acteristic  of being controlled by Your devotees is Your natural embellish­ment. Alas!  You are very difficult to understand. Are Your pastimes also inconceivable  by Sankarsana? Indeed, You are truly transcendental.

"The impious can never comprehend You with their logic and argument.


You deliver one from the cycle of birth and death. Your playing is like  the sporting of a mad elephant. You are spilling over with humorous  pas­times. O Lord, who can properly glorify You? Jnanis and mental  specula­tors can never perceive the truth about You. Being completely  pure, You exist beyond all contamination of the material energy. O  peaceful one! What more can we say? You are the benefactor of everyone. "You eternally exist as the sublime mysterious one, beyond the  injunc­tions of the sastras. O supreme controller! Even Mahesh cannot  fathom Your pastimes, what to speak of Kuvera and other celestials. O  friend of humanity! Please reside in our hearts! Your devotees become  deeply sat­isfied whenever You manifest before them. The demigods like us  have been severely oppressed by tyrants like Kamsa. Please enliven us by  show­ering Your mercy upon us.

"You are witty, clever, attractive, and enchanting. Your matchless  prow­ess always benefits the thousands of gorgeous gopis. Your love is  ever expanding throughout the day and night. In conjugal enjoyment, You  take the aggressive role and behave like a maddened elephant in the  kunjas. Your handsome body appears like a mound of kajala. We constantly  pray to Your charming pastimes that surround You like a dazzling aura."

Thus the perfectly composed prayers of the demigods resounded through­out  the atmosphere to enchant the hearts of everyone with the glories of  Krishna.

Vrajaraja Nanda, who has a jovial personality, ruled his kingdom with  excessive affection. After the Govardhana pastime, the respectable men of  Vrndavana approached Nanda Maharaja and appealed to him, "O King of  Vrndavana! Although You completely removed the fear and doubts we had  about stopping the sacrifice for Indra, due to our wealth and pres­tige,  we are still somewhat contaminated with suspicion. In great amaze­ment we  watched Indra send innumerable Samvartaka clouds to drown the world and  completely wash away our village of Vrndavana. Your seven year-old son,  who is a fountainhead of youth beautified with long tresses of curly hair,  appears like the embodiment of sweet joy. We saw Him pick up the massive  mountain of Govardhana with His left hand and hold it for seven continuous  days!


"Such a marvelous feat is very difficult even for Lord Siva, the master of  Parvati. Just as an elephant easily plucks a lotus full of fragrant honey  with his trunk, your son effortlessly picked up Giriraja. By doing this,  Krishna turned the famous Indra, who was infatuated with unlimited anger,  into an insignificant village goat. Therefore we cannot understand the  iden­tity of this person who bewilders us and covers our knowledge. As  soon as Krishna appeared in our village, He became the life and soul of  everyone. His lips are as sweet as a bandhuli flower, yet He drank the  deadly poison of  Putana's breast milk, purified her, and made her His nursemaid.


"One day Yasoda placed sleepy Krishna beneath a cart to take rest. Sud­denly  just by kicking His delicate feet, which are softer than a bunch of asoka  leaves, He smashed the cart and killed the hideous Sakatasura who was  hiding there. Thereafter, with the ring of His two arms, which break our  patience and are unconquerable by men and demigods, He clutched the throat  of the terrible windstorm demon and squeezed out his life. Then in the  course of playing, He killed offensive demons like Vatsasura, Bakasura,  and Aghasura. In this activity, Krishna did not fight or even feel the least  bit fatigued.

"By nature this boy of yours is simply enjoying throughout the day and  night. His ecstasy and loving affection seem to increase at every moment!  We have never seen anyone with such unique matchless beauty. You must have  noticed all these things too. We beg you, therefore, to please reveal the  truth about the real identity of Your son."


Maharaja Nanda laughed loudly in appreciation of the statements of the  cowherd men. His lips refulgent with a glorious sweetness, Nanda said, "O  respectable cowherd men! Please listen attentively and put your faith in  my truthful words. Garga Muni, who has a pure and blissful mind, and who  is adorned with the quality of omniscience, performed the name-giving  ceremony of my son. That great muni dispelled the doubts and illusions  about Krishna's identity by stating, 'There is no limit to the good fortune  of your son. Even the paramahamsas who have reached the ze­nith of  knowledge cannot perceive the mysterious truth about Him. In each of the  four yugas your son has appeared in four different colors. In Satya-yuga,  He came in a white color; in Treta-yuga, He proclaimed vic­tory in a red  color; in Dvarpara-yuga, He appeared dark blue like a rain cloud, and in  most Kali-yugas He comes in a white color.

"Garga Muni continued, 'But once in the day of Brahma, He appears in a  dark blue form as Krishna, and afterwards He appears in a yellow color. By  His own desire and spiritual power He appeared as the son of Vasudeva.  Therefore, He is also named Vasudeva, and He is equal to Narayana. Those  who love Him become free from all offenses, experience auspi-ciousness  everywhere, and remain always satisfied. He is the only object of love for  both men and women. Out of fear of Him, no enemy comes here to Vrndavana.'

Nanda Maharaja said, "Therefore my dear cowherd men, you need not be  afraid in this matter. My son Krishna acts for everyone's benefit in all  respects. It is quite fitting that you have developed such affection for  Him. Do not allow the mood of awe and reverence {aisvarya bhava) to reduce  the intensity of your friendly love toward Him. On its own, the mood of  majesty {aisvarya bhava) is neither natural nor intimate. Do  not,therefore, put yourself in distress by maintaining this mood of awe  and reverence toward Krishna. Make this youthful son of mine the object of  your compassion." Thus relieved and satisfied, the residents of Vrndavana  gladly returned to their respective homes.Sometime later, Krishna, being  attracted by the opulence of Giriraja and to get relief from the fatigue  of holding him up for a week, strolled along a ridge of Govardhana Hill.  Krishna walked there alone in order to bestow mercy upon the heavenly King  Indra. The cowherd boys suffered greatly in the absence of their beloved  friend. Krishna's pastime of lifting Govardhana Hill had covered the one  with a thousand eyes in layers of intense embarrassment. As a result,  Indra abandoned his bad qualities of anger and pride, and came to  Vrndavana from his heavenly abode accom­panied by a kamadhenu, who carried  the sweet smell of good fortune. Indra wanted to meet Krishna and beg pardon  for his grave offense.


In her humble way, the surabhi cow, accompanying Indra, approached Krishna  and spoke affectionately with the logic of the goddess of learning.  Surabhi said, "O Lord! You are the tilaka mark of good fortune on the head  of the capital of Nanda Maharaja. Please hear my words attentively. You  are famous throughout the universe and worshipable by all living beings.  You are incomprehensible and You manifest incredible opulence in this  world. Even if hundreds of angry Indras try to kill the cows and gopas  with fast moving ferocious clouds pouring torrents of rain, You will  always protect Gokula and saturate its residents with complete bliss.

"Being pleased by Your merciful behavior, Brahma anxiously told me, 'O  goddess Surabhi! Go happily bathe the "Indra of Gokula," who is the  beloved son of Nanda Maharaja. Under Krishna's compassionate protec­tion,  the Vrajavasis, who are praised by the poets, rebelled against Indra even  though they are not envious of him. I am well known for my own misdeed of  previously stealing Krishna's boyfriends and cows. Surabhi! I will follow  you on my swan, along with the munis, rsis, Kinnaras, Caranas, Siddhas,  and demigods, in order to relish the spiritual bliss of this pas­time.'

Surabhi continued, "Hey Krishnacandra! Just see the person standing behind  me. He is always overwhelmed with grief from his anger and of­fenses.  Casting his eyes down in shame, he repents for his rude and arro­gant  actions. Within his mind he is always rebuking himself. He really wants to  be forgiven for his grave offenses to You, but he is afraid to step  forward. If You allow, he will come and submit his petition."


Indra wiped the tears from his thousand eyes and got down from his  mountain of false pride. As he lay on the ground surrendered to the Lord,  it appeared that the radiance from the expensive gems on his crown  illu­minated the lotus feet of Krishna. After lying a long time on the  ground,

Indra stood up, folded his hands, and bowed his head. With fear and  devotion in his heart he gazed at Krishna's jewel-like toenails glowing like  moonshine. Out of ignorance and false pride he had previously acted  fool­ishly. Now humbled, Indra offered prayers to Lord Krishna. King Indra said, "Krishna! You are the Lord of all lords! You are the  beloved son of the King of Vrndavana! Your nature is to be totally  inde­pendent! Grand festivals are held just to worship You. You are the  high­est truth, so it is difficult for someone like me to understand Your  great­ness. Those blinded by the arrogance of pride become intoxicated by  drink­ing the wine of their false egos. Then how can they think favorably  about Your glories? Since their eyes are diseased, they cannot perceive  their own perverted actions. They are just like owls that cannot see the  light of the radiant sun. "Therefore, O kind one! Please listen to me. It is quite befitting that  You stopped my sacrifice in order to severely punish one whose vision had  been so infected with false pride. For a blind man, a stick is the best  medicine. O Lord, You are an ocean of compassion! Although You taught me a  good lesson, I took it in the wrong way. The intelligence of hypo­crites  always directs them to act incorrectly.


"What can be said of us who lust after the poison of sense gratification,  if even the greatest sages, who are free from material attachments, can  become agitated by the powerful mode of passion. Unless Your  insur­mountable illusory energy acts, then how can false ego exist? All  glories to You, the benevolent one! You are the essence of everything in  the three worlds. You are the embodiment of auspiciousness for Vrndavana.  O matchless one! O Damodara! You are the abode of transcendental names and  qualities. O friend of Dama, Sudama, and Vasudama, I offer my respectful  obeisances unto You.

"You are difficult to know. Please do not cover us with illusion. O Lord!  Please be kind to us. With a slight sidelong glance from Your eyes You can  cause fortune or misfortune. O unborn one! Although You never take birth,  You appear in unlimited incarnations. In bygone times, You pleased the  demigods and enjoyed Yourself by becoming Upendra. Just now You will enjoy  being bathed by Surabhi. You are the blue sapphire crest-jewel in the  crown of the Indras in every universe."O lifter of the great mountain of  Govardhana! Although previously known as Abhirama (beautiful and  pleasing), You will now be known by the name of Govinda, which Your  devotees will regularly chant. Go means tending and caring for cows. O  Lord! From today, everyone will call You Govinda."

After becoming purified of his false pride by glorifying Krishna, Indra  commenced the auspicious bathing ceremony. Brahma, the Four Kumaras,Uma,  Mahadeva, Tamburu, Kartikeya, Narada, and Savita attended Krishna's  abhiseka. Many exalted rsis and sages beautified the assembly. The  effulgent wives of the demigods such as Arundhati also visited. The  celestial Apsaras like Urvasi watching from the sky enhanced the festival  with their splendid forms and qualities.


Govardhana, with the limbs of his own body, provided an elegant throne  made of smooth stones and jewels. The demigod Varuna personally held a  fine white umbrella over Krishna's head, which had a fringe of hanging  pearls that appeared like falling raindrops. Vayu, his arm trembling in  ecstatic devotion, stood beside the Lord fanning Him with a camara whisk.  The full moon assumed the form of a mirror made of jewels. Pancajanya, the  Lord's conchshell, sanctified the atmosphere with loud sounds. The  effulgent Sudarshan cakra expanded as many lamps to illu­mine all  directions. Krishna's white lotus flower expanded into many white umbrellas  to shield the Lord. Kaumodik, the Lord's club who is honored for his  strength, stood like a jeweled pillar for the bathing ceremony.

The personified forms of the sacred oceans, rivers, ponds, and lakes came  with pots of water to bathe Krishna. Mother Bhumi collected the finest  quality earth in a box covered with seven jewels. Placing the box on a  jeweled plate, she slowly approached Krishna and offered it to Him. The best  herbs and medicinal plants personified presented themselves for Krishna's  service. Great sacred trees such as the banyan and peepul mani­fested in  person to give Krishna leaves containing the five types of tastes in golden  pots studded with gems of lapis lazuli. The forest gods from the ten  directions brought water pots covered with coconuts and various deli­cious  fruits. The Lord of the mountains brought exotic gems and jewels. The nine jewels, the eight yogic siddhis, the best jewels like cintamani,  kamadhenu, and desire-trees all assumed charming forms to worship the  Lord. Standing at a distance, they faced Krishna with folded hands. The  goddess of Mt. Sumeru offered a golden cloth, and the goddess of the  Himalayas presented splendid necklaces. The goddess of Gandhamadana  Mountain brought golden lotuses from Manasarovara Lake and person­ally  strung a garland for Krishna.


The goddess of the Malaya Mountain delivered the best quality sandal­wood.  Grinding it on a stone from Govardhana, she made a smooth fra­grant paste  for Krishna. Without the knowledge of her husband, Parvati handed Krishna a  gorgeous jeweled necklace. With their own hands, the Sapta-Rsis plucked  fresh lotus buds from the Mandakini River to offer to the Lord. When  needed for service, the sun god made the lotus flowers blossom for the  Lord. The shining of the moon appeared as a mirror.


Agni offered an artistically designed golden incense pot with a hanging  fringe made of coral. The best quality aguru scent burned in the pot, and

rose into the sky fhrough its thousands of holes. Garuda expanded his  effulgent golden wings to form a protective canopy over the Lord. All the  kings of the snakes fanned their hoods to serve as jeweled flags to  sur­round the bathing platform. The various mantras and prayers used for abhiseka like purusa-sukta and  shri-sukta took personal forms to chant in alternating low and high tones.  The surabhi cow contributed the panca-gavya and Lord Brahma provided the  panca-amrta. Airavata (Indra's elephant carrier) filled the gem-studded  bathing pots with water from the Akash-Ganga, which he carried in his  trunk. The demigods in the sky vibrated instrumental music.


The celestial ladies showered flowers from Nanda-kanana while intoxi­cated  Gandharvas, Caranas, Kimpurusas, Siddhas, Sadhyas, and Vidyadharas  joyfully danced in the sky. All the Apsaras appeared to please Krishna with  a special drama. They conveyed the meaning of the play with various dance  steps and facial expressions. Upon beholding the elegant form of  Syamasundara, the famous Apsara Urvasi felt enchanted and devoted herself  to the Lord.

Taking the lead in directing the bathing festival of Krishna, Lord Brahma  approached Surabhi and said, "Today is the best day to observe a happy  occasion. O simple village folk! Do not delay. Everyone queue up behind  Lord Siva and please start the abhiseka. Before I take my turn, let the  leading ladies of the universe come forward. First Arundhati, who tried to  please me, should bathe the Lord. Then Anasuya, who is non-envious and  free from passion and ignorance, and Parvati, the respectable daugh­ter of  the Himalayas who gives bliss to everyone, should step forward. Then the  other exalted ladies such as Gayatri, the mother of the Vedas who welcomes  the Lord when He awakens; Aditi, the mother of the demi­gods whose love is  never broken; Sarasvati, the goddess of learning; and the beautiful Svaha  should bathe Krishna."

Then Lord Brahma, who meditated upon a lotus, asked Krishna to sit down on  the bathing platform. He began the worship by washing Krishna's feet and  offering Him delicious madhuparka and tambula. According to a previous  arrangement, the senior ladies of Vrndavana, their hearts drown­ing in  prema, bathed Giridhari with fragrant panca-amrta, panca-gavya, and the  milk dripping from Surabhi's milk bag.

Seeing the captivating splendor of Murari's body during the abhiseka made  the onlookers question His identity. They wondered, "Is this a monsoon  cloud being bathed in moonshine? Is it a concentration of all blueness  covered with white? Is it a small hill of blue-sapphires covered by the  pure water of crystal gems? Is it a fresh tamala tree decorated with tiny  radiant pearls? Is it a blue lotus covered with bright white camphor  powder?"


Just like enthusiastic mothers anxious to bathe their adorable children,  Gayatri, Parvati, Aditi, and the other chaste demigoddesses like Arundhati  stepped forward and smeared Krishna's body with oil and fragrant cleans­ing  powders. One after another the Four Kumaras and the Sapta-rsis bathed  Giridhari while chanting mantras. Ordered by Brahma, the Four Kumaras  offered water with their folded palms. Feeling great ecstasy, the young  sages cried and shivered in delight. After smearing fragrant red­dish oil  upon Krishna's body, Parvati and other ladies performed the sahasra-patra  snana. They held a plate above Krishna's head that had a thousand holes and  showered Him with streams of crystal clear, camphorated wa­ter. By the  powerful presence of the kama-dhenu, kalpa-taru, and cintamami gems  everything required for Krishna's bathing automatically manifested.After  Krishna's bath some pretty chaste girls dried His beautiful body with fine  soft cloths. Different girls dried His hair, chest, hands, legs, and feet.  One young girl, with the mood of an intimate lover, wrapped Krishna's body  with a fresh dry cloth while removing the wet one and wringing it out.  After they had dried Krishna's body from head to toe a few times, Parvati  advised the young girls how to neatly dress Him.They lovingly offered  Krishna the best quality garments, ornaments, and unguents which they had  previously collected. Although Krishna accepted all this on Brahma's  request, He felt somewhat disturbed because His confidential pastimes with  the gopas and gopis were temporarily inter­rupted. Despite His anxiety,  Krishna did not want to interfere with the demigods who tasted so much  happiness from bathing Him. Being Krishna's devotees, they tried their best  to serve Him with affection. Krishna accepted their offerings but remained  grave.After Krishna's bath and dressing, Brahma offered Him an auspicious  seat under a tree. Brahma wanted to give the utmost pleasure to the Lord  by worshiping Him with all opulence. Along with offering the standard  sixteen items oi puja, Brahma also intended to chant some elaborate  mantras. While Brahma was making these arrangements, Lord Siva ap­proached  him and said, "O Brahma! There is a well-known saying that an intelligent  person does not worry. Krishna's puja will be done by this small boy  standing in front."


Just nearby an attractive effulgence emanated from the eighteen syl­lable  mantra (Gopala mantra) which had manifested a personified form of a small  boy. Seeing that everyone in the assembly was pleased with this little  boy, Brahma said, "O, the Gopala mantra of ecstatic mellows has come in  person. Narada Muni gave this great mantra, whose meter is gayatri, to men  and sages in order to remove the obstacles to bhakti from their hearts.  Thus I am being completely distinguished in two ways. Now I will also  worship Krishna by chanting this mantra."Empowered by the Gopala mantra,  Brahma worshiped Krishna. Many eminent devotees attended the puja including  Narada and rsis like Sanaka, who uproots all anti-devotional desires;  Dhruva, the ideal of devotional determination; Prahlada, who gives delight  to all, and the Vasus, who are eternally fixed in the Satvata philosophy.  Stepping forward, Brahma washed Krishna's lotus feet. Then he sat down in  the lotus posture and gazed ap­preciatively at the Lord with his eight  eyes.The milk ocean personified brought valuable bathing pots for the  Lord, along with many big beautiful, pure white conchshells. Brahma was  anx­ious because there were no stands to hold them. Suddenly, Mt. Meru  personified appeared with many golden three-legged stands to properly hold  those conches. The demigods and their wives worshiped Krishna with a variety  of articles. The goddess of Kailasa presented an auspicious quartz crystal  lota that increased everyone's happiness. The splendidly beautiful goddess  of the Himalayas offered a fancy tray of sweet-smelling wild flow­ers. The  vanadevis supplied fragrant forest flowers, sun-dried rice, barley, kusa  grass, sesame seeds, white mustard seeds, wild black rice, darbha grass,  aparajita flowers, and other natural items mixed with water to bathe  Krishna's attractive lotus feet. They also provided captivatingly aromatic  nutmeg, cloves, and allspice for washing His mouth. Bhumi-devi delivered  incredible natural scents. Some demigods from the Nanda-kanana forest  donated an ornament made from divine, wish fulfilling flowers along with  garments of the finest yellow cloth. Svaha, the wife of Agni, offered a  brilliant lamp containing ghee from surabhi cows and natural camphor  scent.The kamadhenus delivered an abundance of heavenly milk products.  Aditi furnished many kinds of fancy cakes and sweet pies. Saci-devi,  Indra's wife, supplied enchanting tambula covered with golden pan leaves.  The demigods and demigoddesses arrived from every direction bringing  valu­able items to offer to Krishna. In great joy, Brahma chanted the mula  man­tras to initiate the auspicious bathing ceremony.


The demigods played the appropriate melodies on their kettledrums while  the Apsaras danced with euphoria. The Gandharvas and Caranas sang with  youthful exuberance to fill everyone's heart with bliss. Kartikeya  devotedly held an umbrella over Krishna's head.The rsis recited purifying hymns. Brahma adorned Krishna's forehead with  pleasing, artistically drawn tilaka. Overwhelmed in jubilation, he placed  an opulent crown on Krishna's head. The potent jewels on that crown flashed  light in all directions. While setting the crown, Brahma said. "O Krishna,  You are the supreme king among all the kings of the universe!"

Hearing this, rsis like Sunanda and others loudly chanted selected  prayers,"All glories to the enchanter of Vrndavana! O son of Nanda  Maharaja! O almighty one! You are the charming beloved of the splendid  gopisl You are the crest-jewel of all the demigods! The nectar of serving  Your lotus feet far surpasses the bliss of brahman. O Govinda! You are the  original cause of all creation. We offer our repeated obeisances unto  You."


After preparing himself by setting aside his snake ornaments and skull  garland, and by taking a bath in the Manasi Ganga to wash off his ashes,  Lord Siva offered the final arati. He worshiped Krishna with pure fragrant  clay, incense, paddy, an elegant jeweled ghee lamp, and sweet-smelling  scents. He chanted various mantras to conclude the arati and abhiseka.  Following the Vedic injunctions, Gayatri, Gauri, Arundhati and other wives  of the demigods took turns offering arati with ghee lamps. As the worship  concluded, Narada Muni merged in ecstasy as he sang about Krishna's pas­time  of lifting Govardhana Hill. Tamburu, the king of the Gandharvas, sang  along with him.Brahma distributed maha-prasadam to all the devotees at the  conclu­sion of Govinda's bathing ceremony. Lord Brahma gave the following  order to the personified conches, jewels, kalpa-tarus, cintamani gems and  so on, "Please decorate and ornament the sages, the demigods and their  wives, the lord of the snakes, and all the other guests." Everyone  attend­ing Krishna's glorious abhiseka received priceless gifts in charity.  Feeling the supreme euphoria from successfully conducting the abhiseka,  Lord Brahma looked as brilliant as the sun. Before returning to their  celestial homes, all the demigods respectfully circumambulated  Govinda.However, Indra and Surabhi remained behind for a moment. After the  four-headed one and all the demigods departed, Krishna addressed the  fearless intelligent Indra. In a happy humorous mood, Krishna said, "Is your  anger now pacified? Tell me truthfully. You are close to Me, so you should  not conceal the mood of your heart. I did not subdue your anger out of  revenge or enmity. But I wanted to show how your actions were full of  false pride. By nature I cannot bear to see My own devotees possessing  false pride. It is well known that such persons deserve to be punished by  Me."O Indra, I favored you by stopping the sacrifice. O subduer of your  enemies! It does not suit you to maintain envy toward Me. Now return to  Svarga and enjoy your position. Do not become carried away by your wealth  and loose your intelligence again."

Indra listened patiently to Krishna's compassionate words and accepted His  kind chastisement. After respectfully circumambulating the Lord, he went  back to Indrapuri. Then Krishna anointed Surabhi with the fragrance of His  pure affection and bid her farewell. Dressed in a glimmering new golden  outfit, Krishna looked most beautiful as He returned to Vrndavana. It seemed  as if He had just returned after a moment's absence.