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lecture given on Radharani's Appearance Day, in London, September 18, 1969
By His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
The quotes and writings of Shrila Prabhupada are copyrighted by the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust International.
TODAY IS RADHASTAMI, the appearance day of Shrimati Radharani. Fifteen days after Krishna's birth Radharani appeared. Radharani is Krishna's pleasure potency. Radha-krishna-pranaya-vikrtir hladini-saktih. The Supreme Personality of Godhead has varieties of energy, as confirmed in the Vedic literature:parasya saktir vividhaiva sruyate.
The Supreme Lord has nothing to do personally. Na tasya karyam. Here in the material world we find that a very big man-political head or business head - has nothing to do personally, because he has many assistants. Similarly, does the Supreme Personality of Godhead, full with six opulences, have to do anything personally? No. He has many assistants.
In the Bhagavad-gita Krishna says, sarvatah panipadam tat: "The Lord has His hands and legs everywhere." You'll find that Krishna has nothing to do. He's simply enjoying with the gopis (cowherd girls) and Radharani. He's not killing the demons. The Krishna who kills the demons is Vasudeva Krishna; He's not the original Krishna. Krishna expands Himself. The first expansion is Baladeva. From Baladeva come Sankarsana, Pradyumna, Aniruddha, and Vasudeva. So in His Vasudeva feature Krishna acts in Mathura and Dvaraka. But Krishna in His original feature remains in Vrndavana.
One of the greatest fiction writers in Bengal, Bankim Chandra Chatterjee, mistakenly thought that Krishna of Vrndavana, Krishna of Dvaraka, and Krishna of Mathura are different persons. Krishna is the same, but He can expand Himself in millions and trillions of forms. Advaitam acyutam anadim ananta-rupam. Although He has unlimited forms - ananta rupam - He's advaita: There is no distinciton between Krishna and His other forms.
When Krishna wants to enjoy, what kind of enjoyment will He have? That has been discussed by Shrila Jiva Gosvami. Krishna is Param Brahman, the Absolute Truth. The Absolute Truth has three features: Brahman, Pramatma, and Bhagavan. Jnanis, those who try to understand the Absolute Truth by mental speculation, by dint of their own knowledge, realize the Absolute Truth as impersonal Brahman. And yogis, those who try to understand the Absolute Truth by meditation, realize the Absolute Truth as Paramatma.
Paramatma is the feature of the Supreme that is situated in everyone's heart. Isvarah sarva-bhutanam hrd-dese 'rjuna tisthati. And that Paramatma feature is an expansion of Bhagavan, Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Krishna says in the Bhagavad-gita (10.42),
kim jnatena tavarjuna
vistabyaham idam krtsnam
ekamsena sthito jagat
Arjuna was trying to understand Krishna's potencies, so Krishna explained in the tenth chapter, "Among seasons I am spring, among rivers I am the Ganges, among beasts I am the lion, among men I am the king...." And Krishna concluded, "How far shall I go on? Just try to understand that because of My entering the universe by only one plenary portion, the whole cosmic manifestation exists."
The material world exists on one plenary portion of Krishna. And Krishna Himself enters within the universe: andantara-stha-paramana-cayantarastham. Without His entering, the universe cannot exist, just as without the soul's entering within the body, the body cannot exist. As soon as the spirit soul leaves the body, the body is useless. The body may be that of a prime minister, but as soon as the soul leaves the body, the body is not worth even a farthing. Similarly, because Krishna enters within the universe, the universe has value. Otherwise it is simply a lump of matter. So when Krishna wants to enjoy, what kind of enjoyment will He have? That has been discussed by Shrila Jiva Gosvami. Krishna is the Supreme Great. God is great, everyone knows. So when the Great wants to enjoy, what quality of enjoyment will He have? That is to be understood.
Therefore Svarupa Damodara Gosvami has written, radha-krishna-pranaya-vikrtih. The loving affairs of Radha and Krishna are not ordinary, material loving affairs, although they appear like that. Avajananti mam mudha: rascals and fools misunderstand Krishna to be an ordinary man. They do not know Krishna's transcendental nature. They try to imitate Krishna's rasa-lila, His dancing with the gopis. There are many such rascals.
To understand Krishna is very difficult:
kascid yatati siddhaye
yatatam api siddhanam
kascin mam vetti tattvatah
Out of millions of persons, one may try ot make his life perfect. Nearly everyone is working like an animal, and for an animal there's no question of perfection. The animal propensities are eating, sleeping, mating, and defending. And unfortunately most human beings are engaged like animals. They have no other business. They are like hogs, who spend the whole day and night working - "Where is stool? Where is stool?" And as soon as the hogs get some stool to eat, they get fat. Then, "Where is sex? Where is sex?" The hog does not consider whether the mate is even his mother or sister. That is the hog's life. Human life is not meant for hog civilization. But modern civilization is a hog civilization, although it seems polished because the hogs wear shirts and coats. The Krishna consciousness movement, in contrast, is for understanding Krishna. That requires a little labor, austerity, penance. Tapasa brahmacaryena samena ca damena ca. One has to undergo tapasya and brahmacarya - austerity and celibacy. Brahmacarya means stopping sex life or controlling sex life. Without becoming brahmacari, without controlling the impulse for sex, one cannot understand spiritual life. Formerly in Vedic civilization boys were trained from the very beginning to become brahmacari. It was not like the modern day, when boys and girls ten or twelve years old are enjoying together. Such enjoyment spoils the brain; the finer brain tissues are lost, so that one cannot understand higher things.
These are the processes of self-realization: samena (by control of the mind), damena (by control of the senses), tyagena (by giving in charity), saucena (by cleanliness). But in this age these processes are very difficult to undergo. Practically it is impossible. Therefore Lord Chaitanya, Krishna Himself, has made Himself easily available by one process:
nama harer nama
harer namaiva kevalam
kalau nasty eva nasty eva
nasty eva gatir anyatha
This age, Kali-yuga, is considered the most fallen age. We think we are making much advancement, but it is the most fallen age, because people are becoming like animals. As animals have no other interest than four bodily necessities - eating, sleeping, mating, nad defending - so in this age people are interested in four principles of bodily want. They have no information of the soul, nor are they prepared to realize what the soul is. That is the defect of this age.
But the human form of life is especially meant for realizing oneself: "What am I?" That is the mission of human life. Athato brahma-jijnasa: This life is meant for inquiring about Brahman, Paramatma, and Bhagavan.
Jijnasu means inquiry. We inquire every morning, "What is the news today?" Immediately we pick up a newspaper - inquisitiveness is there - but we are inquiring about very base things only. We have no desire to inquire about the highest possibility, brahma-jnana, knowledge of the spirit.
That is the lack in modern civilization. Today people are mainly inquiring about how to earn money. That propensity is there in every age, but in this age it has become the principal factor. Everyone is engaged simply for the bodily necessities. Nidraya hriyate naktam: at night people sleep very soundly, snoring. Vyavayena ca va vayah: or they engage in sex. In this way they're wasting time. And during the daytime - diva carthehaya rajan: "Where is money? Where is money? Where is money?" And kutumba-bharanena va - as soon as one gets money, one thinks how to purchase things for the family, that's all. Shopping, snoring - that is the engagement in materialistic life.
Out of many such foolish persons engaged in sleeping, mating, earning money, and providing the family with a nice apartment and food, one is inquisitive how to perfect the human form. This life is meant for perfection. What is perfection? Perfection means to get out of misery. Everyone is trying to get out of misery, but no one knows the ultimate goal by which to get out of it. Na te viduh svartha-gatim hi visnum. One can be out of misery when one approaches Vishnu.
Here is the material world people are trying to go to the moon, but these foolish people do not know what they'll gain even if they go there. The moon is one of the material planets. Krishna has already said in the Bhagavad-gita, a-brahma-bhuvanal lokah.... All the material planets are places of misery. The moon is very near, but even if you go to the topmost planet, which is known as Brahmaloka, you'll find mesery.
You can see every night what a vast number of planets there are. But you cannot go to them. You are simply trying to go to the nearest planet, and you are failing. So what is your scientific improvement?
But you can go. Material scientists calculate that if one were to travel forty thousand years at the speed of light, then one might approach the topmost planet in the material world. So at least in the modern scientific calculations it is impossible to go there. But one can go; there is a process. That we have tried ot explain in our small booklet Easy Journey to Other Planets. By the yogic process one can go to any planet one likes. That is a yogic perfection.
The living entity is called sarva-gah, "one who can go anywhere he likes." For example, Narada Muni can travel anywhere he likes, either in the spiritual world or in the material world. So you can also do that. That is possible. Within one year the yogi Durvasa Muni traveled all over the universe and went ot Vishnuloka, the spiritual world, and came back. That is recorded in history.
So this is one of the perfections. And how can it be attained? By understanding Krishna. Yasmin vijnate sarvam evam vijnatam bhavanti. The Mundaka Upanisad says that if you simply understand Krishna, then everything else can be understood very easily. Krishna consciousness is such a nice thing.
This evening we are talking about Radhastami. We are trying to understand Radharani, the chief potency of Krishna, Krishna's pleasure potency. As we learn from Vedic literature, Krishna has many varieties of potency: parasya saktir vividhaiva sruyate. Just as a big man with many assistants and secretaries hasn't got to do anything personally - simply by his will everything is done - so the Supreme Personality of Godhead has varieties of energy, and everything is being done so nicely.
The material world, where we are now living, is called bahir-anga-sakti, the external energy of Krishna. And just see how nicely everything is being done by the material energy. Krishna explains in the Bhagavad-gita, mayadhyaksena prakrtih suyate sa-caracaram: "Under My superintendence the material energy is working." The material energy is not blind. Krishna is in the background. And apart from the material, external energy, there is another energy - the internal energy. By the internal energy the spiritual world is being manifested. Paras tasmat tu bhavo 'nyah. As the material world is manipulated under the external energy, the spiritual world is conducted by the internal potency. That internal potency is Radharani.
We should try to understand Radharani. Radharani is Krishna's pleasure potency, hladini-sakti. In the Vedanta-sutra the Absolute Truth is described as anandamaya, always in the pleasure potency.
When you want ananda, pleasure, you cannot have it alone. Alone you cannot enjoy. When you are in a circle of friends or family or other associates, you feel pleasure. My speaking is very pleasing when there are many persons here. I cannot be happy speaking alone; that is not ananda. Although I could speak here in the dead of night when there is no one here, that is not ananda. Ananda means there must be others.
Because Krishna, the Absolute Truth, is anandamaya, He has become many: eko bahu syama. We are also Krishna's parts and parcels, meant to give pleasure to Krishna. And the chief pleasure potency is Radharani.
ekatmanav api bhuvi pura deha-bhedam gatau tau
chaitanyakhyam prakatam adhuna tad-dvayam caikyam aptam
radha-bhava-dyuti suvalitam naumi krishna-svarupam
Krishna is Param Brahman, the Supreme Absolute, as you know from the Bhagavad-gita. When Arjuna understood Bhagavad-gita, he affirmed to Krishna: param brahma param dhama pavitram paramam bhavan: "You are the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the ultimate abode, the purest, the Absolute Truth."
So Krishna is Param Brahman, the Supreme Absolute. In the material world we see that a great saintly person gives up everything of material enjoyment simply to enjoy brahmananda, the happiness of Brahman, the Absolute. He becomes a sannyasi just to understand that he is in Brahman. So if one has to give up everything material for Brahman realization, do you think that Param Brahman, the Supreme Brahman, can enjoy anything material? No. Krishna's enjoyment is nothing material. This point should be understood.
In the material world we have a little information of Brahman and Paramatma, but no one knows Param Brahman, or Bhagavan, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Therefore it is said, manusyanam sahasresu kascid yatati siddhaye. Siddhaye refers to understanding Brahman or Paramatma. But out of many persons who have realized Brahman and Paramatma, hardly one can know Krishna.
Without knowing Krishna, what can we understand about Krishna's pleasure potency? Without knowing a big man, how can I understand his internal affairs? Similarly, if we do not understnad Krishna, how we can understand how Krishna is enjoying? That is not possible.
The Gosvamis are giving us information of the pleasure potency of Krishna, Shrimati Radharani. We have described the loving affairs of Radha-Krishna in our Teachings of Lord Chaitanya. If you have this book, you can read about the transcendental loving affairs of Radha Krishna.
So today we pray to Radharani because She is the pleasure potency of Krishna. Krishna means "all-attractive," but Radharani is so great that She attracts Krishna. So what is the position of Shrimati Radharani? We should try to understand this today and offer our obeisances to Radharani.
"Radharani, You are so dear to Krishna. So we offer our respectful obeisances unto You." Radharani is hari-priya, "very dear to Krishna." Through the mercy of Radharani we can easily approach Krishna. If Radharani recommends, "This devotee is very nice," then Krishna immediately accepts me, however great a fool I may be. Because I am recommended by Radharani, Krishna accepts me. Therefore in Vrndavana you'll find all the devotees chanting Radharani's name more than Krishna's. Wherever you'll go, you'll find the devotees greeting one another, "Jaya Radhe!" You'll find this still in Vrndavana. The devotees are glorifying Radharani. If you go by the speculative process to understand Krishna, it will take many, many lives. But if you take to devotional service and just try to please Radharani, Krishna will be gotten very easily.
Radharani can deliver Krishna. She is so great a devotee, the emblem of maha-bhagavata. Even Krishna cannot understand the quality of Radharani's devotion. Although Krishna says vedaham samatitani - "I know everything" - He fails to understand Radharani. Radharani is so great.
Krishna knows everything, but to understand Radharani, Krishna accepted the position of Radharani.
Krishna thought, "I am full. I am complete in every respect, but still I want to understand Radharani. Why?" This question obliged Krishna to accept the propensities of Radharani to understand Himself.
Such topics, of course, are part of a great transcendental science. One advanced in Krishna consciousness and well conversant with sastras, scriptures, can understand. When Krishna wanted to understand Himself, He took the tendency of Shrimati Radharani. That is His appearance as Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Radha-bhava-dyuti-suvalitam.
Chaitanya Mahaprabhu is Krishna, but He has accepted the propensities of Radharani. As Radharani is always in feelings of separation from Krishna, so Lord Chaitanya, in the position of Radharani, was feeling separation of Krishna. That is the teaching of Lord Chaitanya - to feel separation, not meeting. The process of devotional service taught by Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and His disciplic succession is how to feel separation from Krishna. That is Radharani's position - always feeling the separation.
The Gosvamis, also, when they were in Vrndavana, never said, "I have seen Krishna." Although they were the most perfect devotees, they never said, I have seen Krishna." Their prayers were like this: he radhe vrja-devike.... he nanda-suno kutah!
Radharani does not remain alone. She stays always with Her friends (vraja-devi) Lalita or Visakha and other damsels of Vrndavana. So the Gosvamis, in their mature stage when they were living at Vrndavana, were praying in this way: he radhe vraja-devike ca lalite he nanda-suno kutah: "Radharani, where are You? Where are Your associates? Where are You, Krishna, Nanda-suno, son of Nanda Maharaja? Where are you all?" They were searching. They never said, "I have seen Krishna dancing with the gopis. Last night I saw." [Laughter.]
Those who speak like that are called sahajiyas. Mature devotees do not speak like that. The sahajiyas take everything very cheap - Krishna very cheap, Radharani very cheap - as if they can see Radha and Krishna every night. No. The Gosvamis do not teach us like that. They were searching after Radha-Krishna. He radhe vraja-devike ca lalite he nanda-suno kutah/ shri-govardhana-kalpa-padapa-tale kalindi-vane kutah: "Are you there at Govardhana Hill, or on the banks of the Yamuna?" Ghosantav iti sarvato vraja-pure khedair mahavihvalau. Their business was to cry like this? "Where are You? Where are You, Radharani? Where are you, Lalita, Visakha, the associates of Radharani? Where are You, Krishna? Are You near Govardhana Hill, or on the bank of the Yamuna?"
Ghosantav iti sarvato vraja-pure. Throughout the whole tract of Vrndavana they were crying and searching after Radha-Krishna - khedair mahavihvalau - as if madmen.
Vande rupa-sanatanau raghu-yugau shri-jiva-gopalakau. We have to follow the footprints of the Gosvamis and learn how to search out Krishna and Radharani, in Vrndavana or within our hearts. That is the process of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu's bhajana, or worship: feelings of separation (vipralambha-seva).
Feeling separation from Krishna, Mahaprabhu would fall into the sea. He would go out of His bedroom in the dead of night. Nobody knew where He had gone. He was searching for Krishna.
That process of devotional service is taught by Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. It is not that we can say very easily, "I have seen Krishna and Radharani in the rasa-lila." No, not like that. Feel the separation. The more you feel separation from Krishna, the more you should understand that you are advancing. Don't try to see Krishna artificially. Be advanced in feeling separation, and then your devotion will be perfect. That is the teaching of Lord Chaitanya.
Atah shri-krishna-namadi na bhaved grahyam indriyaih. With our material senses we cannot see Krishna or hear Krishna's name. We must engage ourselves in the service of the Lord. Where does the service begin? Jihvadau: from the tongue. Not from the legs, eyes, or ears. It begins from the tongue. How? Chant Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. And take Krishna-prasadam. The tongue has two businesses: to articulate sound, Hare Krishna, and take prasadam. By these processes you'll realize Krishna.
Don't try to see Krishna. You cannot see Krishna with your material eyes, nor can you hear about Him with your material ears, nor can you touch Him. But if you engage your tongue in the service of the Lord, then He'll reveal Himself to you: "Here I am." That is wanted.
So feel separation from Krishna just as Radharani does, as Lord Chaitanya teaches us, and engage your tongue in the service of the Lord. Then one day, when you are mature, you'll see Krishna face to face.
you very much.
OF SRIMATI RADHARANI BY LORD KRISHNA
For the pleasure of the Vaishnavas, I am submitting the following excerpt from Shrila Rupa Goswami's Lalita Madhava:
Lord Krishna considered within His heart: " Everyone says that I am
complete bliss, full of all rasas; all the world derives pleasure from Me. Is
there anyone who can give Me pleasure? One who has a hundred times more
qualities than Me could give
pleasure to My mind. One more qualified than Me is impossible to find in the world, but in Radha alone I feel the presence of one who can give Me pleasure. Although My beauty defeats the beauty of ten million cupids although it is unequalled and unsurpassed. Although it gives pleasure to the three worlds, seeing Radharani gives pleasure to My eyes. The vibration of My transcendental flute attracts the three worlds, but My ears are enchanted by the words of Shrimati Radhika. Although My body lends fragrance to the entire creation, the scent of Radharani's limbs captivates My mind and heart. Although the entire creation is full of different tastes because of Me, I am charmed by the nectarean taste of the lips of Shrimati Radharani. And although My touch is cooler than ten million moons, I am refreshed by the touch of Shrimati Radhika. Thus although, I am the source of happiness for the entire world, the beauty and attributes of Shrimati Radharani are My life and soul. In this way My affectionate feelings for Shrimati Radharani may be understood, but on analysis I find them contradictory. My eyes are fully satisfied when I look upon Shrimati Radharani but by looking upon Me, She becomes even more advanced in satisfaction. The flute-like murmur of the bamboos rubbing against one another steals Radharani's consciousness for She thinks it to be the sound of My flute, and She embraces a tamala tree, mistaking it for Me. 'I have gotten the embrace of Shri Krishna,' She thinks, 'so now My life is fulfilled.'; thus, She remains immersed in pleasing Me, taking the tree in Her arms. When a favorable breeze carries to Her the fragrance of My body, She is blinded by love and tries to fly into that breeze. When She tastes the betel chewed by Me, She merges in an ocean of joy and forgets everything else. Even with hundreds of mouths I could not express the transcendental pleasure She derives from My association. Seeing the luster of Her complexion after Our pastimes together, I forget My own identity in happiness. The sage Bharata has said that the mellows of lover and beloved are equal. But he does not know the mellows of My Vrindavan. The happiness I feel when meeting Shrimati Radharani is a hundred times greater than the happiness I get from meeting others."
The quotes and writings of Shrila Prabhupada are copyrighted by the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust International.