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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > Compiled and Imp Scriptures > Jaiva Dharma > 38. Srngara-Rasa: Mukhya-Sambhoga & Asta-Kaliya-Lila


C H A P T E R 3 8

Srngara-Rasa: Mukhya-Sambhoga

& Asta-Kaliya-Lila


Vijaya Kumara, with folded hands, inquired from his Gurudeva

about sambhoga-rasa. He replied affectionately.


Gosvami: There are two types of krishna-lila: prakata (manifest) and

aprakata (unmanifest). The states of separation (viraha) in

vipralambha-rasa that I have already described correspond to

prakata-lila. However, in aprakata Vrndavana, there is no separation

of the vraja-devis from Shri Hari, who is eternally engaged in

His variegated, blissful lila such as the rasa-lila. It is written in the

Mathura-mahatmya: "Krishna plays eternally with the gopas and gopis

there." Since the verb 'plays' (krid) is in the present tense, it is to

be understood that Krishna's lilas are eternal. Therefore, in the

aprakata-lila of Goloka or Vrndavana, there is no separation caused

by Krishna's making His residence in a distant place (dura-pravasa).

Love in union (sambhoga) exists eternally there.


The nayaka and nayikas are respectively the visaya (object) and

asraya (abode) of love, and the term sambhoga refers to the wonderful

bhava that arises from the rapture of their loving dealings -

such as seeing each other, talking together, and touching each other

- the object of which is solely to give pleasure to each other. There

are two types of sambhoga: mukhya and gauna


Vijaya: What is mukhya-sambhoga?


Gosvami: Mukhya (principal) sambhoga is the sambhoga that takes

place in the awakened state. There are four kinds of mukhya-

sambhoga: 1) sanksipta-sambhoga (brief sambhoga), which takes place

after purva-raga; 2) sankirna-sambhoga (restricted sambhoga), which

takes place after mana is pacified; 3) sampanna-sambhoga (enriched

sambhoga), which takes place after the nayaka and nayika have been

somewhat distant from each other for some time; and 4)

samrddhiman sambhoga (flourishing sambhoga), which takes place

after being separated by a long distance.


Vijaya: Please describe sanksipta-sambhoga in more detail.


Gosvami: Sanksipta-sambhoga is characterized by reverence and

shyness between nayaka and nayika. As a result, the expressions of

their mutual love - such as kissing and embracing - are brief and



Vijaya: Please explain sankirna-sambhoga.


Gosvami: In sankirna-sambhoga, the nayika's endeavors for amorous

pastimes are expressed with simultaneous feelings of pain and

pleasure. This is compared to the relish of chewing hot sugar cane;

although it is sweet, it also burns. This state results from her

remembering that the nayaka deceived her, or from seeing marks

of amorous enjoyment on the nayaka's body, or from hearing from

others about His amorous activities with other women.


Vijaya: What is sampanna-sambhoga?


Gosvami: Sampanna-sambhoga takes place when the nayaka returns

to be with the nayika after being a short distance away. There are

two types: agati and pradurbhava. Agati is the appearance of the

nayaka before the nayika during the routine of general, everyday

life; for example, the gopis have darsana of Krishna regularly in the

evening when He returns from grazing the cows. Pradurbhava refers

to Krishna's sudden appearance before the gopis when they are

extremely overwhelmed by prema. An example is Shri Krishna's sudden

appearance before the gopis when they were lamenting in separation

because He had disappeared from the rasa-lila. In pradurbhava

there is a festival of happiness arising from the fulfillment of all

one's cherished desires.


Vijaya: What is samrddhiman sambhoga?


Gosvami: It is not possible for the nayaka and nayikas to see each

other and meet together all the time, because they are subordinate

to others and are bound by social etiquette. The profuse bliss

that They experience when They meet suddenly, after being released

from the influence of external pressures, is called

samrddhiman sambhoga. There are two types of sambhoga-rasa,

namely concealed (channa), and manifest (prakasa), but there is

no need to explain them at present.


Vijaya: What is gauna-sambhoga?


Gosvami: Gauna-sambhoga refers to the particular pastimes of Shri

Krishna that are experienced during dreams. There are two kinds of

dreams: general and special. I have already described general dreams

in the context of vyabhicari-bhava. The sambhoga in special dreams

is experienced as real and supremely amazing, and it is endowed

with sthayibhavas and sancari-bhavas like those of the waking state;

in other words, it is exactly like sambhoga while one is awake.

Gauna-sambhoga has the same four divisions as mukhya-sambhoga:

1) sanksipta-sambhoga (brief sambhoga), 2) sankirna-sambhoga

(restricted sambhoga), 3) sampanna-sambhoga (enriched sambhoga),

and 4) samrddhiman sambhoga (flourishing sambhoga).


Vijaya: No factual events occur when one is dreaming, so how is

samrddhiman sambhoga at all possible in dreams?


Gosvami: The svarupa (essential nature) of a dream is the same as

that of the waking state. This is demonstrated by the example of

Usa and Aniruddha. While Usa was asleep in King Bana's inner royal

chambers at Sonitapura, she was practically experiencing the pleasure

of union with Aniruddha in her dream. At the very same time,

Aniruddha was dreaming in his sleeping chamber in Dvaraka-puri,

and was also enjoying the pleasure of vilasa with Usa. Ordinary

people of the mundane realm do not have such experiences.


We can substantiate this fact still further by the evidence of

direct perception, for there are examples of siddha-bhaktas having

supremely wonderful dreams in which they receive articles such

as ornaments which are still with them when they wake up; this

is because such dreams are themselves a reality. Similarly, Krishna

and His kantas also have unimpeded dreams in which sambhoga

actually takes place. These dreams are of two types: 1) the dream

that occurs while one is awake (jagarayamana-svapna), and 2)

the condition of wakefulness that occurs while one is dreaming

(svapnayamana-jagara). The dreams of gopis who have transcended

the fourth state, namely samadhi, and attained the fifth

state, namely prema, are not false like the dreams that are caused

by the mode of passion. Rather, the dreams of the gopis are

aprakrta, nirguna, and absolutely real. Consequently, it is perfectly

possible for samrddhiman sambhoga to take place in the

highly astonishing, aprakrta dream pastimes of Krishna and His

beloved gopis.


Vijaya: Please describe the anubhavas of sambhoga.


Gosvami: The anubhavas of sambhoga are: seeing each other

(sandarsana), talking (jalpana), touching (sparsana), blocking each

others' way in a solitary place (raha-vartma-rodhana), rasa-lila, pleasure

pastimes in Vrndavana (vrndavana-krida), playing in the

Yamuna (yamuna-jale keli), boat pastimes (nauka-vilasa), pastimes

of stealing flowers (puspa-caurya-lila), pastimes of demanding taxes

(dana-lila), hide-and-seek in the kunjas (kunje lukocuri-khela),

drinking honey wine (madhu-pana), Krishna dressing in female attire

(stri-vesa-dharana), pretending to sleep (kapata-nidra), gambling

(dyuta-krida), pulling off each others' garments (vastraakarsana),

kissing (cumbana), embracing (alingana), making nailmarks

(nakha-arpana), drinking the nectar of the lips that are like

bimba fruit (bimba-adhara-sudha-pana), and enjoying amorous

union (nidhu-vane ramana-samprayoga).

Vijaya: Prabhu, lila-vilasa is distinct from amorous union

(samprayoga). Which of these two gives more bliss?

Gosvami: There is more bliss in lila-vilasa than in samprayoga.


Vijaya: How do Shri Krishna's beloved gopis address Him in a loving

mood (pranaya)?


Gosvami: The sakhis address Shri Krishna with great affection as, "He

Gokulananda, He Govinda, He Gosthendra-Kula-candra (the

moon of the family of the King of cowherd men), He Pranesvara

(the Lord of my life), He Sundarottamsa (whose chest and shoulders

are very beautiful), He Nagara Siromani (O crest jewel of lovers),

He Vrndavana-candra, He Gokula-raja, and He Manohara (O

thief of my mind)."


Vijaya: Prabhu, I understand that there are two types of krishnalila,

namely prakata (manifest) and aprakata (unmanifest), but that

they are still one and the same tattva. Now, please explain to me

the types of prakata-vraja-lila.


Gosvami: There are two types of prakata-vraja-lila: nitya (eternal)

and naimittika (occasional). The Vraja pastimes that take place

during the eight periods of the day and night (asta-kaliya-lila) are

actually nitya-lila, whereas Krishna's killing Putana, and His long

sojourn away from Vraja in Mathura and Dvaraka, are naimittikalilas.


Vijaya: Prabhu, please instruct me about the nitya-lila.


Gosvami: We find two types of descriptions: one by the rsis and

the other by the Gosvamis of Vrndavana. Which of these would

you like to hear?


Vijaya: I would like to hear the description in the slokas that the

rsis have composed.




nisantah pratah purvahno madhyahas caparahnakah

sayam pradoso-ratris ca kalastau ca yatha-kramam

madhyahno yamini cobhau yan muhurttam ito smrtau

tri-muhurttam ita jneya nisanta-pramukhah pare


The asta-kaliya-lila of Vraja takes place during eight periods

of the day and night. These are 1) nisanta (the end of

the night just before dawn), 2) pratah (morning), 3) purvahna

(forenoon), 4) madhyahna (noon), 5) aparahna (afternoon),

6) sayam (late afternoon and dusk), 7) pradosa (evening),

and 8) ratri (night). The ratri-lila and madhyahna-lilas both

last for six muhurtas, while the other six periods each last

for three muhurtas.


Shri Sadasiva has explained this asta-kaliya-lila in Sanat-kumarasamhita.

He has specified which services are to be rendered at

particular times of the day, in accordance with the asta-kaliya-lila.

Thus, one should remember the appropriate lila at the appropriate



Vijaya: Prabhu, may I please hear the statements of Jagad-guru



Gosvami: Listen carefully:


sada-siva uvaca

parakiyabhimaninyas / tathasya ca priyah janah

pracurenaiva bhavena / ramayanti nija-priyam


Sadasiva said, "Shri Hari's beloved damsels in Vraja, who have

the sentiments of parakiya-bhava towards Him, please the

darling of their hearts with profuse moods of divya-prema.


atmanam cintayet tatra / tasam madhye manoramam

rupa-yauvana-sampannam / kisorim pramadakrtim


He Narada! You should contemplate your atma-svarupa in

the following manner. You are a kisori (pre-adolescent) gopi

and you reside in the very heart of transcendental

Vrndavana, amidst the beloved damsels of Krishna, who are

endowed with paramour sentiment for Him. You have a

charming youthful form, and enchanting, intoxicating



nana-silpa-kalabhijnam / krishna-bhoganurupinim

prarthitam api krsnena / tato bhoga-paran-mukhim


You are accomplished in many fine arts for Shri Krishna's pleasure.

Yet even if Krishna earnestly requests to meet with you,

you are ever averse to pleasure unrelated to the pleasure of

your Svamini.


radhikanucarim nityam / tat-sevana-parayanam

krishnad 'apy adhikam prema / radhikayam prakurvatim


You are the maidservant of Shri Krishna's most beloved

consort Shrimati Radhika, and are wholly and exclusively

dedicated to Her seva. You always have more prema for Shri

Radhika than for Shri Krishna.


prityanudivasam yatnat / tayoh sangama-karinim



Everyday with much endeavor you arrange for the youthful

couple's meeting, and remain forever content with the

ecstatic bliss of Their service.


ity atmanam vicintyaiva / tatra sevam samacaret

brahma-muhurttam arabhya / yavat tu syan mahanisi


Thus, while conceiving of your atma-svarupa in this

particular way, you should painstakingly render manasi seva

in transcendental Vrndavana from brahma-muhurta to the

end of nisanta-lila (pastimes at night's end)."


Vijaya: What are the activities of nisanta-lila?




shri vrnda uvaca

madhye vrndavane ramye / pancasat-kunja-mandite

kalpa-vrksa-nikunjesu / divya-ratnamaye grhe


Shri Vrnda-devi said, "In the midst of enchanting

Vrndavana, surrounded by fifty kunjas of desire trees, lies a

bower-cottage of cintamani gems.


nidritau tisthitas talpe / nividalingitau mithah

mad-ajna-karibhih pascat / paksibhir bodhitav api


There on a bed of fragrant flowers, yugala-kisora Vrsabhanudulali

Shrimati Radharani and Vrajendra-nandana

Syamasundara Shri Krishna lie asleep in a firm embrace. Then

according to my instructions, the birds attempt to awaken

Them by a rousing chorus of melodious warbling songs.


gadhalingana-nirbhedam / aptau tad-bhanga-katarau

no matim kurvatas talpat / samutthatum manag api


However, the two lovers have become so intrinsically,

unbreakably one through Their deep embrace that even

the thought of breaking up evokes alarm. Indeed, They are

unable in the slightest to fix their minds on rising.


tatas ca sarika-sabdaih / suka-sabdais ca tau muhuh

bodhitau vividhair vakyaih / sva-talpad udatisthatam


However, by the repeated and ingenious urgings of the suka

and sarika (male and female parrots), They at last awaken

and rise from Their bed.


upavistau tato drstva / sakhyas talpe mudanvitau

pravisya kurvanti sevam / tat-kalasyocitam tayoh


Seeing Radha-Krishna sitting blissfully on the bed, the sakhis

happily approach Them and render the various services

required at that time.


punas ca sarika-vakyair / utthaya tau sva-talpatah

agatau sva-sva-bhavanam / bhity-utkanthakulau mithah


But just thereafter, through further prompting from the

sarika, the Divine Couple inevitably arise from that bed and

rush to Their respective homes, full of anxiety provoked

by the transcendental rasas of fear and restlessness."


Vijaya: What are the pratah kaliya-lila (morning pastimes)?




pratas ca bodhito matra/ talpad utthaya sa-tvarah

krtva krsno danta-kastham / baladeva-samanvitah


In the morning, Yasoda Maiya calls Krishna, who then gets

up from His bed and brushes His teeth with a twig in the

company of Shri Baladeva.


matranumodito yati / gosalam dohanotsukah

radha 'pi bodhita vipra / vayasyabhih sva-talpatah


Then with her permission, They go to the cowshed, eager

to milk Their cows. O sage, Shri Radha also leaves Her bed

in the morning, awakened by Her sakhis.


utthaya danta-kasthadi / krtva 'bhyangam samacaret

snana-vedim tato gatva / snapita lalitadibhih


After She has brushed Her pearl-like teeth with an

astringent twig, Her sakhis massage Her body with aromatic

oils. After that, She enters the bathing chamber and sits

upon an elevated asana while Lalita and the other principal

sakhis perform abhiseka of Her Divine Form.


bhusa-grham vrajet tatra / vayasya bhusayanty api

bhusanair vividhair divyair / gandha-malyanulepanaih


Next, She enters the ornament palace. There, Her sakhis

apply divine creams and scents, decorate Her with various

divine garments and ornaments, adorn Her with pleasing,

fragrant garlands and cool Her brow with the pulp of sandal.


tatas ca sva-janais tasyah / susrusam prapya yatnatah

paktum ahuyate sv-annam / sa-sakhi sa yasodaya


When Shrimati Radhika has thus received complete and attentive

service from Her sakhis, by Yasoda Maiya's request

She departs for Nanda-bhavan to cook delicious food for

Shri Krishna"


Hearing this, Narada asked:


katham ahuyate devi / pakartham sa yasodaya

satisu pakatrisu ca / rohini-pramukhasv api


"He Devi. There are many expert cooks headed by Rohini

Maiya; why then does Mother Yasoda invite Radharani to

cook in Nanda-bhavan?"


durvasasa svayam datto / varas tasyai muda mune

iti katyayani-vaktrat / srutam asin maya pura


Shri Vrnda-devi said, "O Narada, I formerly heard from

Bhagavati Katyayani that Durvasa Muni bestowed the

following boon upon Shrimati Radhika:


tvaya yat pacyate devi / tad-annam mad-anugrahat

mistam svadv-amrta-sparddhim bhoktrr ayuskaram tatha


'He Devi! By my mercy, whatever food You cook will rival

the nectar of the gods. Furthermore it will bless the eater

with great longevity.'


ity ahvayati tam nityam / yasoda putra-vatsala

ayusman me bhavet putrah / svadu-lobhat tatha sati


Thus putra-vatsala Yasoda, praying, 'Let my son be longlived!'

daily invites Shrimati Radhika to Nanda-bhavan to

cook. She also has an intense greed to taste that delectable



svasranumodita sapi / hrsta nandalayam vrajet

sva-sakhi-prakara tatra / gatva pakam karoti ca


Taking permission from Her mother-in-law, Shrimati

Radhika blissfully comes to the home of Nanda

accompanied by Her sakhis to prepare the kitchen.


krsno'pi dugdhva gah kascit / dohayitva janaih paraih

agacchati pitur vakyat / sva-grham sakhibhir vrtah


"Meanwhile, Shri Krishna milks a few cows Himself and then,

on His father's order, He engages others to milk the

remaining cows and returns home with His friends.


abhyanga-mardanam krtva / dasaih samsnapito muda

dhauta-vastra-dharah sragvi / candanakta-kalevarah


Arriving home, His servants gleefully massage His divine

body with oil and bathe Him. Then they dress Him with

fresh clothes, smear His body beautifully with sandal paste,

and decorate Him with fragrant garlands.


dvi-vastra-baddha-kesas ca / grivabhalo-parisphuran

candrakara-sphurad-bhalas / tilakaloka-ranjitah


Krishna wears two garments. One covers His lower body and

one His chest. Cascading around His graceful neck and

forehead, His charming, curly hair brilliantly expands His

unprecedented, sweet beauty. On His effulgent forehead,

which resembles the half-moon, His servants draw a

charming tilaka sign which delights the eyes of all.


kankanangada-keyura / ratna-mudra-lasat-karah

muktahara-sphurad-vakso / makarakrti-kundalah


On His wrists, Shri Krishna wears bejeweled bracelets, and on

His arms, precious jeweled bangles. On His hands, signet

rings shine. On His chest, a pearl necklace glistens, and

dazzling makara-shaped sapphire earrings swing from His



muhur akarito matra / pravised bhojanalayam

avalambya karam sakhyur / baladevam anuvratah


After this, Shri Krishna hears Yasomati repeatedly calling Him.

So, surrounded by His sakhas and holding one of them by

the hand, He follows His elder brother Baladeva to the

bhojanalaya (dining hall).


bhunkte 'pi vividhannani / matra ca sakhibhir vrtah

hasayan vividhair hasyaih / sakhims tair hasati svayam


There, in His sakhas' company, He relishes all the preparations

prepared by Radhika and Her sakhis. Making many jokes,

He makes His friends laugh, and He also laughs with them.


ittham bhuktva tathacamya / divya-khattopari ksanam

visramet sevakair dattam / tambulam vibhajann adan


When He has finished His meal, He takes acamana

(mouthwash) and His servants offer Him tambula, which

He distributes among His sakhas. Thereafter, He rests on a

transcendental bed for some time and chews the tambula."


Vijaya: Please describe the purvahna-lila (forenoon pastimes).




gopa-vesa-dharah krsno / dhenu-vrnda-purahsarah

vrajavasi-janaih pritya / sarvair anugatah pathi


"Shri Krishna, attired in gopa-vesa, then leaves the village with

the cows for cow-grazing. At that time, all the vraja-vasis

follow Him some distance from the village, drawn by their

intense love and affection for Him.


pitaram mataram natva / netrantena priya-ganam

yatha-yogyam tatha canyan / sa nivarttya vanam vrajet


Speaking respectfully, Shri Krishna offers pranama to His father

and mother. At the same time, through the corner of His

eyes He glances meaningfully at His beloved gopis and thrills

their hearts. Then after paying due respect to those who

have followed Him, Vamsidhari Syama proceeds with His

sakhas towards the pastures.


vanam pravisya sakhibhih / kridayitva ksanam tatah

viharair vividhais tatra / vane vikridato muda


Having entered the forest, for some time He creates many

kinds of games and gleefully sports with His sakhas.


vancayitva ca tan sarvan / dvitraih priya-sakhair vrtah

sanketakam vrajed dharsat / priya-sandarsanotsakah


Then, cleverly engaging them in activities such as pasturing

the cows, He tricks them and leaves them all aside. He then

proceeds jubilantly with two or three priya-sakhas towards

the rendezvous (sanketa) with His beloved gopis eager to see

His priya."


Vijaya: Please describe the madhyahna-lila (mid-day pastimes).




sapi krsne vanam yantam / drstva sva-grham agata

suryadi-puja-vyajena / kusumadyahrti-cchalat


"After watching Shri Krishna leave for the forest, His most

beloved consort Shrimati Radhika returns to Her home.

Then, on the pretext of performing Surya-puja or collecting



vancayitva gurun yati / priya-sangecchaya vanam

ittham tau bahu-yatnena / militva sva-ganais tatah


...She tricks Her elders in order to have sanga with Her

priyatama Syama. Accompanied by Her sakhis, She goes to

the same forest to meet Him. Thus after much endeavor,

Radha and Krishna meet again...


viharair vividhais tatra / vane vikridito muda

hindolika samarudhau / sakhibhir dolitau kvacit


...and blissfully enact various sportive paramananda-lila

together in the forest. At times, Radha and Krishna sit on a

swing and are swung by Their sakhis.


kvacid venum kara-srastam / priyayapahrtam harih

anvesayann upalabdho / vipralabdho priya-ganaih


Sometimes (while feeling slightly drowsy) Shri Hari's venu

slips from His fingers and is stolen by His priya Shri Radha.

Despite restlessly searching on all sides for it, He finally

becomes disappointed and gives up hope. At that point the

beloved gopis offer the venu into His lotus hands,


hasito bahudha tabhir / hasitas tatra tisthati

vasanta-rtuna justam / vanam khandam kvacin muda


laughing and making witty remarks. At that time Krishna

looks splendid as He delights the gopis by teasing them,

joking and countering their impudent remarks. Sometimes,

Shrimati Radhika and Shri Krishna enter a particular section

of the forest that is attended by the spring season



pravisya candanambhobhih / kunkumadi-jalair api

nisincato yantra-muktais / tat-pankair limpato mithah


There, They use silver syringes filled with colored water

mixed with fragrant substances, such as kunkuma and

candana, to drench each other; and at other times, They

smear the paste of candana, kunkuma and so on over each

other's limbs.


sakhyo'py evam visincanti / tas ca tau sincatah punah

vasanta-vayu-justesu / vana-khandesu sarvatah


In the beauty and splendor of that forest, which is served

on all sides by soothing spring breezes, the sakhis also join

in Their transcendental sports by assisting Them to bathe

one another with that fragrant water...


tat-tat-kalocitair nana-viharaih sa-ganair dvija

srantau kvacid vrksa-mulam / asadya muni-sattama


O best of the munis, Shrimati Radha and Krishna and their

confidential sakhas and sakhis perform various blissful sports

appropriate for that time. Feeling fatigued from performing

Their pastimes in this lively way, They sit beneath a tree…


upavisyasane divye / madhu-panam pracakratuh

tato madhu-madonmattau / nidraya militeksanau


...on a divine throne and enjoy drinking nectarean honeywine

(madhu). Becoming intoxicated by that madhu, They

close Their eyes in sleep for some time.


mithah pani-samalambya / kama-bana-prasangatau

riramsur visatah kunje / skhalat-padabjakau pathi


Holding each other's hands Radha-Syama become pierced

by the arrows of Kamadeva, and desiring to enjoy with one

another, Their lotus feet stumble from the path and They

enter the kunja.


kridatas ca tatas tatra / karini-yuthapau yatha

sakhyo'pi madhubhir matta / nidraya piditeksanau


Thereafter, Shrimati Radhika and Syamasundara freely

consort with each other in the kunja, like the king of

elephants and his mate. The sakhis, who are also intoxicated

with madhu, proceed drowsily...


abhito manju-kunjesu / sarva evapi sisyire

prthag ekena vapusa / krsno'pi yugapad vibhuh various charming kunjas nearby. By the influence of

His inconceivable potency, Shri Krishna manifests Himself in

many forms, and simultaneously meets individually with

each sakhi.


sarvasam sannidhim gacchet / priyaya prerito muhuh

ramayitva ca tah sarvah / karinir gaja-rad iva


Just as an elephant infatuated by lust does not feel tired

when he unites with a number of she-elephants, at the

same time that He is giving further and futher inspiration

to Shri Radha, Shri Krishna consorts with many beloved



priyaya ca tatha tabhih / kridarthan ca saro vrajet


After such amorous sports with Shrimati Radhika and Her

confidential sakhis, They enter a lake for water sports."


vrnde shri-nanda putrasya / madhurya-kridane katham

aisvaryasya prakaso'bhut / iti me chindi samsayam


Shri Narada said, "O Vrnda, how is it possible for the aisvarya

feature to manifest in the madhurya of Shri Nandanandana's

pastimes? Please dispel this doubt."


mune madhuryam apy asti / lila-saktih hares tu sa

taya prthak kridam gopa-gopikabhih samam harih


Shri Vrnda-devi said, "O Muni, Shri Hari's madhurya is

actually His lila-sakti. With this sakti He performs His most

attractive and sweet pastimes. It is only through this

madhurya-lila-sakti that He sports at the same time with each

gopa and gopi,...


radhaya saha rupena / nijena ramate svayam

iti madhurya-lilayah / saktir na tv isata hareh


but in His own original form He sports with Shri Radha. This

is Shri Krishna's madhurya-sakti, not His aisvarya-sakti.


jala-sekair mithas tatra / kriditva sva-ganais tatah

vasah srak-candanair divyair / bhusanair api bhusitau


"After entering within the lake, Radha-Krishna and Their

sakhis begin Their play by splashing water at each other, and

then bathing each other. After that, They are decorated with

beautiful garments, fragrant garlands, candana and divine



tatraiva sarasas tire / divya-manimaye grhe

asnatah phala-mulani / kalpitani mayaiva hi


Then, within a divine bower of jewels situated on the shore

of that lake, I offer them a repast of fruits and herbal drinks

that I have prepared myself.


haris tu prathamam bhuktva / kantaya parisevitah

dvitrabhih sevito gacchec / chayyam puspa-vinirmitam


Shrimati Radhika personally serves Shri Krishna as He honors

the festive foods first. He then rests on a bed of flowers. At

that time, two or three sakhis attend Him…


tambulair vyajanais tatra / pada-samvahanadibhih

sevyamano hasams tabhir / modate preyasim smaran supplying Him with betel nuts (tambula), fanning Him,

massaging His feet, and so on. As the sakhis serve Shri Krishna,

He falls asleep smiling, absorbed in thoughts of His beloved



shri-radhapi harau supte / sa-sakhi moditantara

kanta-dattam prita-mana / ucchistam bubhuje tatah


While Shri Krishna rests, Radhika and Her sakhis with great

love and delight relish the remnants of food and drink left

by Her lover.


kincid eva tato bhuktva / vrajet sayya-niketanam

drastum kanta-mukhambhojam / cakoriva nisa-karam


"After Shri Radhika has accepted a little of Krishna's remnants,

She goes to the bedroom and gazes upon the lotus face of

Her Prana-vallabha, Shri Krishna, just like the cakori bird looks

at the moon.


tambula-carvitam tasya / tatratyabhir niveditam

tambulany api casnati / vibhajanti priyalisu


The sakhis there offer Her the tambula chewed by Shri

Syamasundara. She also chews the remnants, after dividing

it among Her sakhis.


krsno'pi tasam susrusuh / svacchanda-bhasitam mithah

prapta-nidra ivabhati / vinidro'pi patavrtah


Shri Krishna is eager to hear the sweet, uninhibited talks

between Shri Radhika and Her sakhis, so He has covered His

whole body with cloth and pretends to be deeply asleep,

although He is fully awake.


tas ca keli-ksanam krtva / mithah kanta-kathasrayah

vyaja-nidram harer jnatva / kutascid anumanatah


The sakhis think that Krishna is asleep and freely make witty

remarks, laughing and cutting jokes with each other. Soon

afterwards, however, they guess that He was only

pretending to be asleep, and that He has cleverly heard

everything that they said.


vyudasya rasanam dadbhih / pasyantyo'nyonya-mananam

lina iva lajjaya syuh / ksanam ucur na kincana


Feeling ashamed, they press their tongues between their

teeth, and immersed in shyness, they look at each other's

faces in awe, unable to speak.


ksanad eva tato vastram / durikrtya tad-angatah

sadhu-nidram gato'siti / hasayanti hasanti tah


However, they very soon recover their natural state; throwing

the cloth from Krishna's body, they say, 'What a sound

sleep You are having!' This amuses Krishna, and they all laugh



evam tau vividhair hasyai / ramamanau ganaih saha

anubhuyah ksanam nidram / sukhan ca muni-sattama


"O best of the munis, in this way Radha, Krishna and the sakhis

perform a variety of playful pastimes which are full of witty

jokes and laughter, and then They enjoy blissful sleep for



upavisyasane divye / sa-ganau vistrte muda

panikrtya mitho haram / cumbaslesa-paricchadan


Thereafter, in great delight, they all sit on a divine,

capacious raised seat. Then, wagering necklaces, garments,

kisses or embraces,...


aksair vikridatah premna / narmalapa-purahsaram

parajito'pi priyaya / jitam ity vadan mrsa


...with bhavas of prema they jestingly gamble with dice.

Even though Krishna is defeated, He falsely claims that He

has won.


haradi-grahane tasyah / pravrttas tadyate taya

tathaivam taditah krishnah/ karotpala-saroruhaih


Thus He approaches to take away Radhika's necklace, but

She slaps Him. Being thus slapped by Her lotus hands,...


visanna-manaso bhutva / gantum ca kurute matim

jito'smi cet tvaya devi / grhyatam mat-panikrtam


Krishna becomes morose. Pretending that He is about to leave

the place, He says 'O Devi, I have been defeated by You.

Here, take my wager.


cumbanadi maya dattam / ity uktva ca tathacaret

kautilyam tad-bhruvor drastum / srotum tad-bhartsanam vacah


These are the kisses and other things that I staked before.'

So saying, Shri Krishna awards Shrimati Radhika Her kisses and

so on. Being eager to witness Shri Radha's crooked eyebrows

and hear Her words of chastisement to Shri Syama…


tatah sari-sukanan ca / srutva bagaharam mithah

nirgacchatas tatah sthanad / gantu-kamau grham prati


...the suka and sari birds come and begin a dispute about

the respective virtues of Radha and Krishna. After hearing

that dispute between the suka and sari, Shri Shri Radha and

Krishna depart for Their respective destinations.


krishnah kantam anujnapya / gavam abhimukham vrajet

sa tu surya-grham gacchet / sakhi-mandala-samvrta


Shri Krishna takes leave of His Prana-vallabha Shrimati Radhika,

and goes to rejoin the cows, while Shrimati Radhika goes with

Her sakhis to Surya Mandira to perform Surya-puja.


kiyad duram tato gatva / paravrtya harih punah

vipra-vesam samasthaya / yati surya-grham prati


Meanwhile, after Shri Krishna has gone a short distance, He

disguises Himself as a brahmana priest, and also sets off for

Surya Mandira.


suryan ca pujayet tatra / prarthitas tat-sakhi-janaih

tadaiva kalpitair vedaih / parihasa-visaradaih


Shrimati Radhika's sakhis think that He is a pujari who will

help them to conduct their worship, and they request Him

to perform Surya-puja on their behalf. Thereupon, Shri Krishna

begins to perform Surya-puja with funny, concocted Vedic



tatas ta vyathitam kantam / parijnaya vicaksanah

ananda-sagare lina / na viduh svam na caparam


When the intelligent sakhis hear these made-up Vedic

mantras, they immediately understand that this priest is

none other than their lover Shri Krishna Himself, who is distressed

in separation from Shri Radhika. Knowing this,

drowning in the ocean of the bliss of prema, they forget their

own identity and that of others.


viharair vividhair evam / sarddhayam advayam mune

nitva grham vrajeyus tah / sa ca krsno gavam vrajet


(O Muni), when They have spent two and a half praharas

performing a variety of pastimes like this, Shrimati Radhika

and Her sakhis return to their respective homes, while Krishna

proceeds to His cows."


Vijaya: What are the aparahna-lila (afternoon pastimes)?




sangamya sva-sakhin krsno / grhitva gah samantatah

agacchati vrajam karsan / tatratyan murali-ravaih


Shri Vrnda-devi continues, "O Narada, Krishna rejoins His

sakhas and returns to Vraja. By the sweet sound of His murali,

He assembles all the cows from every direction and steals

away the hearts of the vraja-vasis.


tato nandadayah sarve / srutva venu-ravam hareh

go-dhuli-patala-vyaptam / drstva vapi nabha-sthalam

krishnasyabhimukham yanti / tad-darsana-samutsukah


When Nanda and the other vraja-vasis hear the sweet sound

of Shri Hari's venu and see the sky being covered with the

dust raised by the cows' hooves, they become very eager to

see Him and immediately proceed in that direction.


radhikapi samagatya / grhe snatva vibhusita

sampadya kanta-bhogartham / bhaksyani vividhani ca

sakhi-sangha-yuta yati / kantam drastum samutsukah


After returning to Her home, and being bathed, dressed and

ornamented by Her sakhis, Shrimati Radhika prepares various

types of foods for Her Prana-vallabha Shri Krishna and anxiously

leaves with Her sakhis to take His darsana.


raja-marge vraja-dvari / yatra sarva-vrajaukasah

krsno'pi tan samagamya / yathavad anupurvasah


When Krishna returns to the outskirts of Vraja on the way

from go-carana, all of the vraja-vasis gather on both sides of

the royal path. Shri Krishna greets everyone, and offers respect

according to age, qualities and so forth.


darsanaih sparsanair vaca / smita-purvavalokanaih

gopa-vrddhan namaskaraih / kayikair vacikair api


Some He favors by looking on them, some by embracing,

some by sweet words, and some by jubilant, sweet, smiling

glances overflowing with prema.


sastanga-pataih pitarau / rohinim api narada

netranta-sucitenaiva / vinayena priyam tatha


He Narada! Shri Krishna offers respectful namaskara both by

bodily gestures and by respectful words to all the elderly

gopas. Falling down, He offers sastanga-dandavat to the feet

of Maharaja Nanda, Yasoda Maiya, and Rohini Maiya, and

gives special delight to His beloved gopis with His krpakataksa

(merciful sweet sidelong glances).


evam tais ca yatha-yogyam / vrajaukobhih prapujitah

gavalayam tatha gas ca / sampravisya samantatah


In return, the various vraja-vasis offer Him blessings,

exchange sweet words, worship Him and so on. He then

carefully herds the cows into the go-sala.


pitrbhyam arthito yati / bhratra saha nijalayam

snatva bhuktva kincid atra / pitra matranumoditah

gavalayam punar yati / dogdhu-kamo gavam payah


Afterwards at the request of Their parents, Shri Krishna and

Dauji go to Their rooms and bathe and take a little prasada.

Then after requesting their parents' blessings, the two

divine brothers again proceed eagerly towards the go-sala

to milk the cows."


Vijaya: What are the sayam-lila (pastimes during dusk and early





tas ca dugdhva punah krishnah / dohayitva ca kascana

pitra sarddham grham yati / payo-bhara-satanugah


"Then Shri Krishna milks some of the cows Himself and

engages others in milking the rest. When this is done, He

returns to His house with His father, followed by hundreds

of servants carrying pots of milk.


tatrapi matr-vrndais ca / tat-putrais ca balena ca

sambhukte vividhannani / carvya-cosyadikani ca


Arriving home, He sits beside Nanda Maharaja, His uncles,

His cousins, Balarama and the sakhas while Yasoda, Rohini,

and other elderly gopis serve Them, and He relishes varieties

of food preparations that are chewed, sucked, licked and



Vijaya: Please tell me about the pradosa-lila (pastimes of the first

part of the night).




tan-matuh prarthanat purvam / radhayapi tadaiva hi

prasthapyante sakhi-dvara / pakvannani tadalayam


"In great excitement, Shrimati Radhika cooks varieties of

food preparations and sends them by Her sakhis to Krishna in

Nanda-bhavan, even before Her mother-in-law orders Her

to do so.


slaghayams ca haris tani / bhuktva pitradibhih saha

sabha-grham vrajet tais ca / justam bandhu-janadibhih

pakvannani grhitva tah / sakhyas tatra samagatah

bahuny eva punas tani / pradattani yasodaya


Along with His father and the sakhas, Shri Krishna repeatedly

relishes and praises the varieties of preparations sent by

Shri Radha, as well as many others given by Yasoda Maiya.

Then Krishna goes with His father, friends and relatives to

the assembly hall where singers and dancers entertain them

with sweet songs and dances.


sakhya tatra taya dattam / krsnocchistam tatha rahah

sarvam tabhih samaniya / radhikayai nivedyate


Meanwhile, the sakhis take Krishna's remnants and offer them

to Radhika in a secret place. Shrimati Radhika distributes them

amongst the sakhis in order of seniority (and deeply absorbed

in thoughts of Him She honors them with great delight).


sapi bhuktva sakhi-varga yuta tad-anupurvasah

sakhibhir mandita tisthet / abhisarttum samudyata


After enjoying those remnants, Her sakhis decorate Her very

charmingly, and She is then ready to go on abhisara (meeting

with Her priyatama Syama!)."


Vijaya: Prabhu, I am becoming very eager to hear about ratri-lila

(the night pastimes).




prasthapyate maya kacid / ata eva tatah sakhi

tathabhisaritabhis ca / yamunayah samipatah

kalpa-vrkse nikunje'smin / divya-ratnamaye grhe

sita-krishna-nisayogya / vesayitva sakhi-yuta


Shri Vrnda-devi said, "I send a certain sakhi from here to

Shrimati Radhika, who accompanied by Her sakhis then

comes to a divine, bejeweled bower inside the nikunja. It is

situated on the banks of Yamuna, densely covered by kalpa

vrksa trees. According to the messenger sakhi's indication,

Shrimati Radhika dresses in clothes that suit the brightness

of the moon. During the dark fortnight (krishna-paksa), She

dresses in dark clothes, while in the bright fortnight (suklapaksa),

She wears light or white clothes.


krsno'pi vividhas tatra / drstva kautuhalam tatah

katyayanya manojnani / srutvapi gitakany api


Meanwhile, Krishna sits in His father's assembly hall,

watching various types of wonderful shows and listening

to katyayani-sangita songs that captivate the mind.


dhana-dhanyadibhis tams ca / prinayitva vidhanatah

janair aradhito matra / yati sayya-niketanam


After that, He suitably rewards and satisfies the performers

with wealth or grains, accepts worship from Nanda

Maharaja's subjects, and proceeds with His mother towards

His bedroom.


matari prasthitayan tu / bahir gatva tato grhat

sanketitam kantayatra / samagacched alaksitah


After Yasoda Maiya has put Krishna to sleep, she leaves His

room and goes to rest in her own room. Thereupon, Krishna,

who was only pretending to be asleep, silently leaves His

room, taking care not to be noticed by anyone,


militva tav ubhav atra / kridato vana-rajisu

viharair vividhai rasa-lasya-gita-purahsaraih


He goes to join His consort at the assigned meeting (sanketa)

place. There, They perform various pastimes headed by

singing and rasa dancing together in the forest with Their



sarddham yama-dvayam nitva / ratrav eva vidhanatah

visve susupatuh kunje / paksibhis tav alaksitau


"After spending almost two and a half praharas of the night

and performing various other pastimes of the rasa-lila, (such

as bathing in Yamuna), the two Moieties enter Their kunja

unnoticed by the sleeping birds.


ekante kusumaih klipte / keli-talpe manohare

suptavatisthatam tatra / sevyamanau nijalibhih


In that solitary kunja, Radha and Krishna lie down on a sublime

bed of flowers, just suitable for Their mind-captivating,

amorous pastimes. Then they rest while Their most

confidential sakhis render appropriate services."


Vijaya, this is the most celebrated Shri Krishna's asta-kaliya-lila, in

which the ingredients of all types of rasa are present. The various

types of rasas that I have discussed with you previously are all

present in this lila. You should keep rendering your service at your

assigned place, at the appointed time, in your appointed group,

and with your specific relationship.


When Vijaya Kumara had heard all these descriptions from Shri

Guru Gosvami's lotus mouth, he became overwhelmed with bhava.

Tears of prema rolled down his cheeks, and the hairs on his body

stood on end. He spoke a few words in a faltering voice, and then

fell unconscious at Shri Gopala Guru Gosvami's lotus feet. Sometime

later, when he regained consciousness, Shri Gopala Guru

Gosvami embraced him with great affection, and stroked his head.

Streams of tears also fell from Shri Guru Gosvami's eyes.


Eventually, realizing that it was very late at night, Vijaya Kumara

offered dandavat-pranama at Shri Guru Gosvami's lotus feet, composed

himself, and walked slowly to his place. Now rasa-katha began

to appear in his heart day and night.