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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > Other Scriptures by Acharyas > Brahma Vaivarta Purana > Wedding of Radha Krishna

Shri Brahma-vaivarta Purana

Canto Four

Shri Krishna-janma-khanda

The Birth of Lord Krishna

Volume Five


Chapter Fifteen

Shri Radha-Krishna-vivaha

The Wedding of Shri Radha-Krishna                                                   

Chapter Sixteen


The Killing of Baka, Kesi and Pralamba, and the Journey

to Vrndavana                                                                                              

Chapter Fifteen

Shri Radha-Krishna-vivaha

The Wedding of Shri Radha-Krishna


1        Shri Narayana Rsi said: One day, taking infant Krishna with Him, Nanda tended the cows in a banyan grove of Vrndavana forest.

2        He drank the sweet water of a lake, made the cows drinks also, and, holding infant Krishna to his chest, he sat at the roots of a banyan tree.

3        O sage, then Lord Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead who was playing the role of an infant, employed His Yogamaya potency to suddenly cover the sky with clouds.

4-5     Seeing the cloud-covered sky, darkened forest, howling winds, ferocious thunder, great rainstorm, wildly shaking trees, and falling branches, Nanda became afraid.

6        Nanda said: How can I go home now and leave the calves behind?  If I do not go home, what will become of my boy?

7        As Nanda spoke these words, infant Krishna, pretending to be afraid, cried and clutched His father’s neck.

8-22    At that moment beautiful Radha, walking more gracefully than the khanjana birds and the rajahamsa swans, her beautiful face glorious as the autumn moon, her glistening eyes robbing the midday autumn lotuses of their beauty, Her beautiful eyelashes wonderfully splendid with black kajjala, Her beautiful nose crushing the beauty of the bird-king’s beak, Her nose decorated with a great and precious pearl, Her earrings robbing the midday summer sun of its splendour, Her lips robbing the ripe bimba fruits of their beauty, Her splendid teeth eclipsing rows of pearls, Her smile destroying the splendour of jasmine flowers just beginning to bloom, gracefully decorated with musk and sindura dots, Her beautiful cheeks graceful with curly locks of hair, the hairs of Her boy erect with joy, Her breast decorated with necklaces of the kings of jewels, Her firm breasts more graceful than a pair of shriphala fruits, beautiful with painted pictures and decorations, splendid with precious jewels, Her waist very graceful, Her deep navel marked with wonderful tri-bali lines, decorated with a belt of precious jewels, her knitted eyebrows Kamadeva’s weapons to bewilder the minds of the kings of the yogis, Her firm thighs graceful like elephant trunks, Her feet robbing the land-growing lotuses of their splendour, Her feet anointed with red lac and decorated with jewel pasakas, Her lac-anointed toenails robbing the regal jewels of their splendour, decorated with tinkling anklets of precious jewels, decorated with jewel bracelets and armlets, beautiful conchshell ornaments, and many finger rings, splendid with garments pure as fire, Her fair complexion robbing beautiful campaka flowers of their glory, and holding a splendid pastime-lotus and a jewel mirror to see the beauty of Her face, approached the infant Krishna.

23      Seeing Radha, illuminating the ten directions with a splendour greater than ten millions suns, suddenly come to that secluded place, Nanda was very surprised.

24      His head bowed and his eyes filled with tears, he said to Her: From Garga Muni’s mouth I have learned that to the Supreme Personality of Godhead You are more dear than Goddess Laksmi.

25      I also know that this boy is the infallible Supreme Personality of Godhead, beyond the modes of nature and superior even to Lord Maha-Vishnu.  Still, I am just an ordinary human being, bewildered by Lord Vishnu’s illusory potency.

26      O beautiful one, now You may take my son and enjoy with Him as You like.  When Your desires are all fulfilled, You will return Him to me.

27      After speaking these words, he fearfully gave the crying infant to Her.  She accepted Him with a sweet and  happy smile.

28      She said to Nanda: Take care that this secret is not revealed.  How many births of pious deeds have made you able to see Me?

29      Garga Muni told you, and therefore you know the secret of why Krishna and I have come to Gokula and Vraja.

30      Please ask for whatever your heart desires.  I can easily give to you what even the demigods cannot attain.

31      Hearing Radha’s words, Nanda said to Her: Please give me devotion to the feet of Lord Krishna and Yourself.  I do not desire anything but that.

32      O supreme goddess, O mother of the universes, please grant the rare boon that Yasoda and I will always stay near You and Krishna.

33      Hearing Nanda’s words, Goddess Radha said to him: I will give to you devotional service that has no equal.

34      Day and night You and Yasoda will always remember Lord Krishna and Me in the blossoming flower of your hearts.  This memory of Us is very difficult to attain.

35      I give you the blessing that the illusory potency will not cover You and Yasoda.  At the end, leaving your human forms behind, you two will go to Goloka.

36      After speaking these words, She held infant Krishna to Her breast, to Her heart’s content embracing Him for a long time with both arms.

37      Holding Him to Her breast, embracing and kissing Him again and again, and hairs of Her body erect, She remembered the circle of the rasa dance.

38      Then Radha suddenly saw a jewel palace with a hundred jewel domes...

39      ...opulent with many wonders, beautiful with wonderful gardens, splendid with ruby pillars,...

40      ...fragrant with sandal, aguru, musk, and kunkuma, decorated with jasmine flowers, furnished with many flower couches,...

41      ...filled with many pleasures, decorated with splendid mirrors and many pearls, rubies and the kings of jewels,...

42      ...splendid with great doors made of the kings of jewels, decorated with cloth, ornaments and beautiful pennants,...

43      ...splendid with seven stairways of jewels the colour of kunkuma, and also splendid with flower gardens frequented by swarms of bees.

44      Seeing this, Goddess Radha happily entered the palace.  There she saw betelnuts scented with camphor and spices,...

45      ...a jewel pot of cool, clear, nectarean water, and, O Narada, many jewel pots filled with nectar and honey.

46      There She saw the handsome, youthful, and dark Supreme Personality of Godhead, who was anointed with sandal paste, who was splendid and playful like ten million Kamadevas,...

47      ...who, dressed in yellow garments, smiling, charming, and His face and eyes happy, was reclining on a flower couch,..

48      ...who wore tinkling anklets made of the kings of jewels and bracelets and ornaments made of the best of jewels,...

49      ...whose cheeks were splendid with earrings made of the kings of jewels, whose chest was splendid with the regal Kaustubha jewel,...

50      ...whose face robbed the autumn moon of its splendour, whose eyes eclipsed the splendour of the autumn lotuses,...

51      ...who was embraced by a jasmine garland, who wore a triple crown of peacock feathers, and who was looking at the jewel palace.

52      Noticing that there was no longer any infant on Her lap, Radha gazed at the youth before Her.  Even though She remembered everything perfectly, She was still filled with wonder.

53      Gazing at this handsome form, Radha became bewildered with passionate love.  The two cakora birds of Her eyes happily gazed at the moon of this person’s face.

54      Radha gazed at Him with unblinking eyes.  The hairs of Her body stood up.  She smiled.  Tormented with amorous desires, She yearned to embrace Him.

55      As passionate Radha, Her lotus face smiling, gazed at Him, Lord Krishna spoke to Her.

56      Shri Krishna said: O Radha, You must remember what happened in Goloka.  O beloved, now I will fulfil the promise I made to You.

57      O Radha, O girl with the beautiful face, I love You more than anyone.  You are identical with Me.  We are not different.

58      As whiteness is always present in milk, as heat is always present in fire, and as fragrance is always present in earth, so I am always present in You.

59-60  AS without clay a potter cannot make a pot and without gold a goldsmith cannot make a golden earrings, so without You I cannot create the world.  You are the place where the world rests and I am the perfect seed from which it sprouts.

61      O saintly one, recline on this couch.  Become the splendour decorating My chest.  As an ornament is the body’s splendour, so You are My splendour.

62      When You do no stand by My side, the people call Me Krishna.  When You do stand by My side the people call Me splendid Krishna (Shri Krishna).

63      You are splendour.  You are opulence, You are the resting place of everything.  For everyone, and also for Me, You are all power.

64      I am not an ordinary man and You are not an ordinary woman.  That is the conclusion of the Vedas.  O infallible one, You have the power to assume any form You wish, and I have that power also.

65      When I choose to appear as the Brahman effulgence, You also appear as the Brahman effulgence.  When I choose not a manifest a form, You also do not manifest a form.

66      O beautiful one, when I choose to become the seed that begets everything, then by Your mystic powers You become the most beautiful of all women.

67      You are half of My body.  You are the Supreme Goddess, the root of all nature.  In power, intelligence, knowledge, and glory, You are My equal.

68      One who thinks We are different is the lowest of men.  He stays in the hell called Kalasutra for as long as the sun and moon shine in the sky.

69      He makes seven generations of ancestors and seven generations of descendants fall down.  The piety he earned in ten million births is destroyed.

70      They who foolishly insult Us are the lowest of men.  They burn in hell through the lifetimes of a hundred Brahmas.

71      When one, suddenly frightened, calls out, “Ra!” I give him transcendental devotional service.  When one adds the syllable “dha”, I, eager to hear his chanting, visit him.

72-3    O Radha, they who present to Me the sixteen offerings and devotedly serve Me during their entire lifetime are very dear to Me, but one who chants the name “Radha” is even more dear.

74-5    Brahma, Sesa, Siva, Yama, Nara-Narayana Rsi, Kapila, Ganesa, and Karttikeya are not as dear.  Laksmi, Sarasvati, Durga, Savitri, Prakrti, and all the goddesses are not as dear.

76      To Me they are as dear as life, but You are more dear than life.  They stay in different place, but You stay on My chest.

77      In My four-armed form of Narayana I hold Goddess Laksmi to My chest. In My original form of Krishna, I hold You to My chest always.

78      After speaking these words, Lord Krishna reclined on the beautiful couch.  Her head humbly bowed, Radha spoke to Her Lord.

79      Shri Radha said: I know this.  I remember everything.  Lord, how could I forget?   By the mercy of Your lotus feet I am all that You have said of Me.

80      O master of illusion, why do you put devotees like Me into illusion?  Many devotees like Me are bewildered by Your maya potency.

81      By one devotee’s curse I have become a gopi on the earth, and You and I will be separated for a hundred years.

82      Why are some dear to the Supreme Lord and some not dear to Him?  As they render service to Him, He grants His mercy to them accordingly.

83      You have the power to transform blade of grass into a mountain and a mountain into a blade of grass.  Therefore You are equally kind to the competent and the incompetent, to the husband and to the wife.

84      O Lord, You are reclining on this couch and I am standing before You.  This moment of Our conversation is like a hundred yugas.  I cannot measure the time We have now spent together.

85      Please place Your lotus feet on My head and breast.  Please extinguish the fire of separation that burns in My heart.

86      My glance at once fell on Your lotus feet.  Only with a great effort am I able to pull My eyes from Your lotus feet and gaze at the rest of Your transcendental form.

87      Gazing, one by one, on each limb, My eyes finally rest on Your lotus face.  I have no power to pull them to any other place.

88      Hearing Radha’s words, Lord Krishna smiled and spoke to Her the truthful and auspicious philosophy of the Sruti and smrti sastras.

89      Shri Krishna said: Beloved, for whatever happens to anyone in any place or any lifetime there is nothing to lament.  I have already explained this to You.

90      O beautiful one, please wait for a moment.  When the proper time comes I will fulfil Your desire and make You happy.

91      O Radha, I will not erase what fate has written.  How can the demigod Brahma erase it?

92      I am the father of Brahma.  What fate has written for Brahma and the demigods and for the lesser creatures also, is not to be broken.

93      At that moment, carrying a garland and a kamandalu in his hands and his four faces gently smiling, the demigod Brahma came before Lord Krishna.

94      His head humbly bowed, the hairs of his body erect, and tears in his eyes, Brahma bowed down before Lord Krishna and praised Him in many prayers.

95      Offering prayers and bowing down, Brahma approached Shri Krishna.  Again bowing down with devotion, he then approached Shri Radha.

96-7    He bowed his head before the lotus feet of Shri Radha, the mother of all.  With great respect he washed Her feet with water from his kamandalu and then dried them with the towel of his hair.  Then folding his hands, he spoke many prayers.

98      Shri Brahma said: O mother, by Lord Krishna’s mercy I can now see Your lotus feet, which are rarely seen by the people of the earth and other places.

99      In ancient times I performed austerities for sixty thousand years in Puskara-tirtha on the earth.

100     After that Lord Krishna, the giver of boons, came to offer a boon.  “Ask for a boon”, He said, and I happily asked for what I long desired.

101     Then I said, “O Lord beyond the modes of material nature, at this very moment please show me Shri Radha’s lotus feet, which are very difficult for anyone to see.”

102     “In time I will show them to you.  For now, My child, please wait”, Lord Krishna said and left.

103     O mother of all, the words of the Supreme Personality of Godhead never go in vain.  Because of His boon I am now able to see Your lotus feet, which everyone in Goloka and on the earth yearns to see.

104     The demigoddesses in the celestial planets are born into the material world.  But You are born from half of Lord Krishna’s transcendental boy.  You are His equal in all respects.

105     “This is Shri Krishna, and this is, You, Radha.  This is You, Radha and this is Shri Krishna Himself.”  Neither the Vedas nor I can say this of You two.  We cannot distinguish between You and say that one is different than the other.  Who can say it?

106     O mother, above the material world is the spiritual world of Vaikuntha and Goloka.  O mother, as the spiritual world is eternal, so You are also eternal.

107     As the living beings in all material universes are part and parcel of Lord Krishna, so You are the powers and abilities that reside within all living beings.

108     All males are part and parcel of Lord Krishna and all females are part and parcel of You.  Lord Krishna is the Supersoul present in the bodies of all conditioned souls.  You are the resting place of Him.

109     O supreme mother, Lord Krishna’s breath created You, and You breath created Him, the Supreme Personality of Godhead.  Of You two, who is the creator and who the created?

110     O supreme mother, as Lord Krishna is eternal, so are You.  Is He the part and parcel of You, or are You the part and parcel of Him?  Who can say?

111     I am the creator of the material universe and the father of the Vedas.  By learning the Vedas from the guru’s mouth one becomes wise.

112     Still, I do not have the power to praise even a hundredth part of Your virtues and glories.  What Vedic scripture or what great philosopher has the power to praise You?

113     Intelligence is the father of prayers, and You, O mother, are the mother of intelligence.  Who has the power to praise You?

114     What everyone has seen a philosopher can describe.  What philosopher can describe something no one has seen or heard of before?

115     Neither I, Lord Siva, Lord Sesa, Goddess Sarasvati, nor all the Vedas have the power to praise You.  O goddess, we do not have to power to praise You properly.

116     I have described Your glories as far as I am able.  Please do not criticise me.  They who are supremely powerful are equally kind to both the wise and the foolish.

117     A child may be virtuous one moment and mischievous the next, but the mother and father, out of love, forgive any mischief he may do.

118     After speaking these words Brahma, the creator of the universe, bowed down before Shri Shri Radha-Krishna’s lotus feet, before which all the devotees yearn to bow.  Then Brahma respectfully stood before the divine couple.

119     One who morning, noon and night recites these prayers spoken by the demigod Brahma attains devotional service to the feet of Shri Shri Radha-Krishna.

120     Pulling up all past karma by its roots, defeating invincible death, and jumping over all other worlds, He goes to the supreme abode of Goloka.

121     Shri Narayana Rsi said: After hearing Brahma’s prayers, Shri Radha said to him, “O creator Brahma, you may ask a boon, whatever your heart desires.’

122     Hearing Shri Radha’s words, Brahma said to Her, “Please give me devotion for the feet of You both.”

123     When Brahma said this, Radha at once replied, “So be it”.  Then Brahma, the ruler of a material universe, devotedly bowed again before Her.

124     Then, sitting between Them both, Brahma ignited a sacred fire and, meditating on Lord Krishna, properly offered oblations.

125     Then Lord Krishna rose from His couch, sat by the fire, and, as Brahma recited the mantras, properly offered oblations.

126     Then Brahma, the father of the Vedas, bowed down before Shri Shri Radha-Krishna.  Then he had Radha circumambulate Lord Krishna seven times.

127     Then he had Radha circumambulate the sacred fire.  Then he bowed down before Lord Krishna.  Then he offered a sitting place to Shri Radha.

128     Then he had Lord Krishna take Radha’s hand and then he had Lord Krishna recite seven Vedic mantras.

129     Then grandfather Brahma, the knower of the Vedas, placed Radha’s hand on Lord Krishna’s chest, and Lord Krishna’s hand on Radha’s back.  Then he had Radha recite the mantras.

130     Then Brahma had Radha happily place a knee-length parijata garland around Lord Krishna’s neck.

131     Then Brahma had Radha bow before Lord Krishna and then he had Lord Krishna place a beautiful garland around Radha’s neck.

132     Then Brahma had Lord Krishna sit down and then he had smiling Radha, Her thoughts fixed on Lord Krishna, sit at Lord Krishna’s left.

133     O Narada, then Brahma had Radha and Krishna fold Their hands and recite five Vedic mantras.

134     Then Brahma had Radha again bow down before Lord Krishna.  Then, as if he were the father and She were his daughter, Brahma gave Radha to Lord Krishna.  Then Brahma respectfully stood before Lord Krishna.

135     Then the demigods, the hairs of their bodies erect with joy, sounded many dundubhis, anakas, murajuras, and other kinds of drums.

136     The demigods showered parijata flowers, the gandharvas sand, and the apsaras danced.

137     Smiling, Brahma said to Him, “Now please give me as daksina devotion for the lotus feet of You both.”

138     Hearing Brahma’s words, Lord Krishna said to him, “You will have very firm devotion for My lotus feet.”

139     “Now go to your own abode.  All will be auspicious for you.  Of this there is no doubt.  Son, by My command please perform the duties I have given to you.”

140     O sage, hearing the Supreme Personality of Godhead’s words, Brahma bowed down before Shri Radha and Krishna and then happily went to his own abode.

141     After Brahma’s departure, smiling Goddess Radha gazed again and again with crooked eyes at Lord Krishna’s face.  Then She shyly covered Her own face.

142     Wounded by Kamadeva’s arrows and the hairs of Her boy now erect, She bowed before Lord Krishna and affectionately approached His couch.

143     Then She anointed Lord Krishna’s forehead and chest with tilaka markings of sandal, aguru, musk, and kunkuma.

144     Then She affectionately offered Lord Krishna a beautiful jewel cup of nectar and honey.  Lord Krishna, the master of the universes, drank it.

145     Then Radha respectfully offered Lord Krishna delicious betelnuts scented with camphor and spices.  Lord Krishna chewed them.

146     As Lord Krishna watched, Smiling Radha drank the nectar Lord Krishna offered Her and chewed the betelnuts He offered Her.

147     Lord Krishna happily offered Her the betelnuts He had chewed.  She chewed them with great respect.  She drank the nectar of His lotus face.

148     Lord Krishna begged for the betelnuts Radha had chewed.  Radha refused, smiled, and cheerfully said, “Please forgive Me.”

149     Then Lord Krishna anointed all of Radha’s limbs with sandal, aguru, and kunkuma.

150     Kamadeva eternally meditates on Lord Krishna’s lotus feet.  Still, to please Shri Radha, Lord Krishna voluntarily placed Himself under Kamadeva’s control.

151     O sage, the servants of Lord Krishna’s servants defeat Kamadeva at every moment.  Still, Lord Krishna, who is the supremely independent Personality of Godhead whose desires are always fulfilled, happily accepted defeat at Kamadeva’s hands.

152     Then Lord Krishna took Radha’s hand, placed Her on His chest, loosened Her garments, and kissed Her in four ways.

153     In Their amorous battle Her tinkling ornaments, the red ointment on Her lips, and the pictures and designs drawn with perfumes on Her limbs were all broken.

154     O sage, as They enjoyed amorous pastimes Her sindura tilaka and marks of red lac were all wiped away.

155     Filled with pleasure, and the hairs of Her body erect, Radha did not know whether it was day or night.

156     Pressing Her limbs against His, Lord Krishna, the most learned scholar of the Kama-sastra, enjoyed eight kinds of amorous pastimes with Radha.

157     Pulling smiling, crooked-eyed Radha to Him, Lord Krishna scratched and bit all Her limbs.

158     As They enjoyed amorous pastimes there was a beautiful sound from the tinkling of Radha’s bracelets, anklets, and tinkling ornaments.

159     In a secluded place Lord Krishna, the most learned scholar of the Kama-sastra, untied Radha’s braids and removed Her ornaments and garments.

160     Then Radha untied Krishna’s hair and removed His ornaments and garments.  They were both expert in these pastimes.  Neither was unhappy at this.

161     Then Lord Krishna forcibly took a jewel mirror from Radha’s hand.  Radha responded by forcibly taking the flute from Krishna’s hand.

162     Lord Krishna sweetly stole Radha’s heart and mind, and Radha sweetly stole Lord Krishna’s heart and mind.

163     O great sage, when the amorous battle ended, smiling, crooked-eyed Radha lovingly returned the flute to Lord Krishna.

164     Then Lord Krishna returned Her mirror, gave Her a splendid pastime-lotus, made Her braids again beautiful, and marked Her again with sindura tilaka.

165     Lord Krishna dressed Her and decorated Her with ornaments and with wonderful and colourful pictures and designs drawn in perfume.  Neither Visvakarma, nor even Radha’s gopi friends know how to make such graceful and beautiful decorations.  How can they be described here?

166     As Radha was about to dress and decorate Him, Lord Krishna suddenly abandoned His form of Her youthful lover and suddenly became an infant again.

167-8  Seeing that the infallible Supreme Personality of Godhead had again become the crying, frightened, hungry infant that Nanda gave Her, Radha sighed.  Her heart was shaken.  Overcome with the grief of separation, She looked for Her lover here and there.

169     Distressed, She plaintively appealed, “O master of illusions, why do You show this illusion to Your maidservant?”

170     Radha fell to the ground and wept, and infant Krishna also wept.  Then a disembodied voice said:

171-2  O Radha, why do You weep?  Remember Krishna’s lotus feet.  Until the time of pastimes in the rasa-dance circle, every evening You will leave a shadow of Your form at home and You will come here and enjoy amorous pastimes with Lord Krishna to Your heart’s content.  Please don’t weep.

173     O beautiful one, please place on Your lap the infant that I the master of all illusions and the Lord of Your life, abandon Your lamenting and go home.

174-5  O Narada, hearing these words, Goddess Radha placed the infant Krishna on Her lap.  She gazed at the jewel palace, the flower garden, and the forest, and then She suddenly left Vrndavana forest and, travelling as fast as the mind, arrived in half an eyeblink at Nanda’s palace.

176     Her eyes were red and Her clothing in disarray.  As She was about to give the infant to Yasoda, Radha sweetly said:

177     I had to endure many difficulties on the path as I tried to carry this very big, hungry, crying, child Your husband gave to Me in the cow-pasture.

178     O Yasoda, the sky was filled with clouds, it rained again and again, and the path was muddy and almost impassable.  My clothes were ruined.  It was very difficult to carry your child.

179     O saintly Yasoda, please take your boy, give Him your breast, and make Him happy.  I have been gone from home a long time.  I must return at once.

180     Speaking these words, and giving her the infant Krishna, Radha went home.  Saintly Yasoda took her infant, kissed him, and gave Him her breast.

181     From that time on, every evening Radha would leave Her household duties at home, go to that place in Vrndavana forest, and enjoy amorous pastimes with Lord Krishna.

182     O child, in this way I have told you something of Lord Krishna’s beautiful, sacred, peerless, delightful pastimes, which bring to the hearer liberation from the world of birth and death.

Chapter Sixteen


The Killing of Baka, Kesi, and Pralamba, and the journey to Vrndavana


1        Shri Narayana Rsi said: One day, after eating and drinking at breakfast, Lord Krishna went with the boys and cows to the forest to enjoy pastimes.

2        There Krishna herded the cows and played many games with the boys.

3        With Balarama, the boys and the cows, Lord Krishna went to Madhuvana and drank the sweet water there.

4        In that place there was a powerful demon that had the form of a ferocious white duck.  Its face was very ugly and so was its fearsome body big as a mountain.

5        Seeing Krishna, Balarama, the boys and the cows in the pasture, the demon easily swallowed Them all as Agastya Muni swallowed the demon Vatapi.

6        Seeing that Lord Krishna was swallowed by a duck, all the demigods became afraid.  Weapons in hand, they ran to the spot.

7        Indra threw his thunderbolt, made from a sage’s bones.  The duck did not die, but one of its wings went up in flames.

8        O Narada, Candra threw his frost weapon and the duck suffered with the cold.  Surya’s son Yamaraja threw his club and the duck was knocked unconscious.

9        Vayu threw his wind weapon and the duck was blown to another place.  Varuna threw his hailstone weapon and the duck suffered terribly.

10      Agni threw his fire weapon and the duck’s remaining wing went up in flames.  Kuvera threw his half-moon weapon, and the duck’s feet were cut off.

11      Siva threw his spear and the duck demon fell unconscious.  The rsis and munis gave their blessings to protect Krishna in the fearful situation.

12      Then Lord Krishna, the supreme controller, expanded His spiritual effulgence and made every limb and internal organ of the demon’s body burst into flames.

13      The demon vomited all it had swallowed and then suddenly gave up its life.  After killing this duck powerful Lord Krishna, accompanied by the boys and cows, went to a beautiful grove of keli-kadamba trees.

14      To that place came a powerful demon that had assumed the form of a great bull big as a mountain.

15      The demon bull caught Lord Krishna in its horns and whirled Him around and around.  The frightened boys ran, screaming.

16      Fully aware that His brother was the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Balarama laughed and said to the boys, “Why are you afraid?”

17      Then, grabbing the demon’s horns, Lord Krishna whirled him around and around, threw him into the sky and made him come crashing to the ground.

18      Crashing to the ground, the great demon at once gave up his life.  All the boys laughed.  They sang and danced with joy.

19      After killing Pralamba, Lord Krishna went with Balarama and the cows to Bhandiravana forest.

20      Seeing Krishna coming, a horse demon, pawing the ground with its hooves, suddenly charged.

21      The demon picked up Lord Krishna, threw Him into the sky, and made Him fall headfirst to the ground.

22      Then the demon grabbed Lord Krishna and with its teeth tried to rip Him apart.  The demons teeth became broken, as if it had tried to chew a thunderbolt.

23      Burned by Lord Krishna’s spiritual effulgence, the demon fell to the ground and gave up its life.  Then many dundubhi drums suddenly sounded and there was a great shower of flowers.

24-7    Then Lord Krishna’s handsome and charming liberated associates, their two-armed spiritual forms effulgent, wearing yellow garments, crowns, earrings, forest garlands, and tinkling anklets, their limbs anointed with sandal and kunkuma, flutes in their hands, their faces gently smiling, their hearts overcome with mercy for the devotees, and their features and dress those of gopas, suddenly came there, riding on a splendid chariot made of the best of jewels.

28      Wearing splendid garments and jewel ornaments, they approached Lord Krishna in Bhandiravana forest.

29      Bowing before Lord Krishna, and glorifying Him with prayers, they went to Goloka, the highest place in the spiritual world.

30      Having once been demons, they were now devotees, liberated associates of Lord Krishna.

31      Shri Narada said: Who were these divine persons, these devotees that had been demons?  What wonderful story did  you hear of them?  O noble one, please tell their story.

32      Shri Narayana Rsi said: Please hear, O brahmana, and I will tell you the ancient story of their activities, a story I heard from Lord Siva’s mouth during the Surya-parva festival at Puskara-tirtha.

33      As we were discussing Lord Krishna’s glories, Brahma, Yama, the sages and I asked Lord Siva to tell their story.

34      O son of Brahma, O fortunate one, I will now tell you all the details of this story, which purifies the worlds.  Please listen carefully.

35      A gandharva king name Gandhavaha, who was very austere and devoted to Lord Krishna, lived on Mount Gandhamadana.

36      O sage, he had four noble gandharva sons who, day and night, awake or asleep, always meditated on Lord Krishna’s lotus feet.

37      Disciples of Durvasa Muni, they devotedly worshipped Lord Krishna.  Every day they worshipped Lord Krishna, offered Him lotus flowers, and the drank some water.

38      Their names were Vasudeva, Suhotra, Suparsva, and Sudarsaka.  Performing austerities for a long time at Puskara-tirtha, they made friends with the siddhas there.

39      Studying yoga under Durvasa Muni, the eldest brother became the best of the yogis.  He became a siddha and accepted a wife.  He shone with spiritual splendour.

40      Leaving his material body behind, he became a liberated associate of Lord Krishna.

41      One day at sunrise the three remaining brothers went to Citra-sarovara Lake to gather lotuses for Lord Krishna’s worship.

42      O sage, observing them gathering lotuses, Lord Siva’s servants at once came and bound up the three devotees.

43      The strong servants brought the weak devotees to Lord Siva.  Seeing Lord Siva, everyone bowed their heads to the ground.

44      Lord Siva, overcome with kindness for the devotees and his face smiling with happiness, offered His blessings.

45      Lord Siva said: Who are you?  You have stolen lotuses from Parvati’s lake, where a hundred thousand yaksas stand guard so Parvati can fulfil her vow.

46      So that her husband will become fortunate, every day for three months she offers a thousand lotuses to Lord Krishna.

47      Hearing Lord Siva’s words, the frightened devotees, their heads humbly bowed and their hand folded, spoke to Lord Siva.

48      The gandharvas said, O master, we are gandharvas, the sons of Gandhavaha.  We offer lotus flowers to Lord Krishna and then drink some water.

49      O master, we did not know this lake was protected by Parvati.  Please take all our lotuses and make our gathering them a success.

50      O Lord Siva, today we will neither offer lotuses nor will we drink water.  But then, why should we not drink water?  After all, we have offered these lotuses to You.

51      O master, now we have become purified.  Now we are directly offering lotus flowers to the same person we always meditated on, the same person we worshipped with lotus flowers day after day.

52      The Supreme Personality of Godhead is one.  Who can be His rival?  How can He have a material form?  How can He have a material form?  Out of kindness to His devotees, He employs His Yogamaya potency to expand in a great variety of spiritual forms.

53      You are our master.  O Lord, please accept these lotus flowers.  O infallible one, please fulfil the desire of our hearts by showing to us the form of Lord Krishna, who...

54      ...has two arms, is dark, handsome, and youthful, wears yellow garments, holds a pastime flute in His hand, is the Supreme Personality of Godhead,...

55      ...has one face and two eyes, is anointed with sandal and aguru and decorated with jewel ornaments, has a gentle smile and a face filled with happiness,...

56      ...wears a peacock-feather crown and a jasmine garland, has a chest splendid with kaustubha, the king of jewels,...

57 splendid with garlands of parijata flowers, and is more splendid, charming, handsome, and playful than many millions of Kamadevas,...

58      ...on whom the gopis gaze with crooked eyes, who is in the full bloom of youth, who rests on Radha’s breast,...

59      ...whom Brahma and the demigods glorify with prayers, bow down before, meditate on, and yearn to attain the company of, who is self-satisfied, whose desires are all fulfilled, and who is overcome with feelings of mercy for the devotees.

60      After speaking these words, the gandharvas, the hairs of their bodies erect as they remembered Lord Krishna’s transcendental form, respectfully stood before Lord Siva.

61      Tears in his three eyes as he heard their words and remembered Lord Krishna’s transcendental form, Lord Siva said to the gandharvas:

62      I know that you are great devotees of the Lord.  You travel here and there to purify the worlds with the dust of your lotus feet.

63      I yearn to see Lord Krishna’s devotees.  It is very rare that a devotee of Lord Krishna comes to these three worlds.

64      You are very dear to Me, to Parvati, and to all the demigods.  You devotees of Lord Krishna are to me more dear than my own devotees are.

65      However, O fortunate ones, please hear the promise I made about Parvati’s vow, a promise I cannot break.

66      The promise was during the time of Parvati’s vow, whoever takes lotus flowers from this lake will at once take birth as a demon.  Of this there is no doubt.

67      However, no real calamity even happens to the devotees of Lord Krishna.  Therefore, after one birth as demons, you will all go to the world of Goloka.

68      My sons, O you who yearn to see Lord Krishna’s transcendental form with your own eyes, you will see Him on the earth, in the forest of Vrndavana.

69      O best of devotees, you will see Lord Krishna.  Then you will die, mount a splendid transcendental chariot, and go to Lord Krishna’s own abode.

70      Because you are so eager to see the form of Lord Krishna, you may now see Him.

          After speaking these words, Lord Siva allowed them to see Lord Krishna’s form.

71      With tear-filled eyes gazing at that supremely handsome form, they bowed down, and then took birth as the kings of demons.

72      Vasudeva had already been liberated, Suhotra became the duck demon Bakasura, Sudarsana became Pralamba, and Suparsvaka became the horse-demon Kesi.

73      In this way, by the blessing of Lord Siva, they saw Lord Krishna’s transcendental form, were killed by Lord Krishna and finally went to Lord Krishna’s abode.

74      O brahmana, in this way I have described to you Lord Krishna’s pastime of giving liberation to Baka, Kesi and Pralamba.  By hearing this pastime one attains liberation.

75      Shri Narada said: O noble one, by your mercy I have heard all these wonderful pastimes.  What was the vow Parvati was observing?  That is what I wish to hear now.

76      O master, who I worshipped in this vow/  What is the result of following this vow?  What restrictions are observed in it?  What offerings are made in it?  What are the things necessary for it?

77      How long does this vow last?  What is the reason for it?  O master, please reflect on this and describe it to me, for I am very eager to hear.

78      Shri Narayana Rsi said: This vow lasts for three months.  It’s purpose is to increase the husband’s good fortune.  In this vow Shri Shri Radha and Krishna are the object of worship.

79      It begins on the day of visuva and ends on the day of daksinayana.  The day before beginning the vow one must fast by eating only havisya (rice and ghee).

80      Then, at the time of Vaisakha-sankranti, one should bathe in the Ganga.  Then, by the Ganga’s bank, in the village of Salagrama, in a jewel palace, or in the water, one should follow the vow.

81      Then one should worship the five demigods, and then one should devotedly meditate on the Lord Krishna, the master of Shri Radha.  Please listen and I will describe to you that meditation.

82-4    I worship the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is dark like a new monsoon cloud, who wears yellow silk garments, whose smiling face is an autumn moon, whose eyes are blossoming lotus flowers, who is splendidly anointed with sandal paste, who again and again enchants the gopis’ hearts, on whom Radha gazes, who rests on Radha’s breast, and whom Brahma, Sesa, Siva, Yama and all the demigods glorify with many prayers.

85      With this meditation the woman following the vow should worship Lord Krishna.  Then, following the description in the Madhyandina-ruti, one should happily meditate on Shri Radha.

86-93  I worship beautiful Shri Radha, who is the queen of the rasa-dance, eager to enjoy the rasa-dance, She who stays in the rasa-dance circle, the goddess of the rasa-dance, She who rests on the chest of the rasa-dance’ king, expert at enjoying nectar pastimes, the beloved of He who is expert at enjoying nectar pastimes, she who is the best of they who are expert at enjoying nectar pastimes, who is very graceful, delightful, beautiful, and charming, whose eyes rob the autumn lotus flowers of their splendour, whose eyebrows are gracefully bent, whose eyes are splendid with mascara, whose face is an autumn moon, who has a beautiful gentle smile, whose complexion is the colour of beautiful campaka flowers, who is decorated with sandal paste, a musk dot, sindura dots, and beautiful pictures and design drawn in perfumes, who is splendid in garments pure like fire, whose beautiful cheeks are splendid with jewel earrings, whose breast I splendid with a necklace of the kings of jewels, who is splendid with jewel bracelet, armlets, tinkling anklets, and tinkling ornaments, who I served by Brahma and the demigods and even by Lord Krishna, the supreme object of service for everyone, whom Lord Krishna, the mater of everyone praises with many prayers, and who is the seed from which everything was born.

94      Every day one should meditate on Shri Radha in this way, devotedly worship Her with Lord Krishna, and present sixteen offerings to Her.

95      O sage, the woman that follows this vow should meditate and worship in this way every day, and every day she should offer 1008 lotus flowers to Shri Radha.

96      The woman that follows this vow should devotedly offer fruit and flowers to Radha and Krishna.  Carefully pronouncing the word ‘svaha’ she should salute Lord Krishna.

97      Every day she should devotedly offer 108 ripe and unbroken mangoes, bananas or plantains.

98      O sage , every day she should devotedly feed a hundred brahmanas.

99      Every day the woman following the vow should perform an agnihotra-yajna and devotedly offer 108 oblations to Radha and Krishna.

100     O Narada, in this way she should offer into the fire oblations of sesame and ghee.  Every day she should perform Krishna-kirtana with musical instruments.

101     In this way she should observe the vow for three months.  O Narada, please hear what she should do on the day of pratista, when the vow is completed.

102     She should offer ninety thousand unbroken lotus flowers.  Then she should feed a thousand brahmanas delicious sweet rice and pistaka cakes carefully cooked by a brahmana.

103     Then she should offer 9710 fruits, and then she should offer many kinds of delicious foods.

104     Then an expert brahmana should perfectly establish a sacred fire and offer into it ninety thousand oblations of sesame and ghee.

105     Then she should devotedly offer costly garments, delicious foods, fruits, sacred threads, flowers, scents and ninety laddu candies.

106     Then she should offer ninety jars of cool water.  Completing the vow in this way, she should then offer daksina to the officiating priest.

107     Then she should offer the daksina described in the Vedas, that is she should give to the priest a thousand bulls with golden horns.

108     O brahmana, this three month vow I have described to you increases the good fortune of the performer’ husband and gives to her many very pious descendants.

109     By the power of this vow her husband becomes fortunate for a hundred births and for a hundred births she is the mother of saintly children.

110     She is never separated from her husband and children.  Her husband and children become like her servants, faithfully following her orders.

111     By the power of the vow she becomes saintly and always devoted to Shri Shri Radha-Krishna.  Awake or asleep, she always remembers Lord Krishna.

112     I will now describe to you this best of vows, a vow described in the Sama Veda, a vow followed by our mothers.

113     Making Agastya Muni her priest, Svayambhuva Manu’s wife, Satarupa, followed this vow in the beginning.

114     O sage, the Devahuti followed this vow, then Caruhuti followed it, and then, making Pulastya Muni her priest, Srutyukta followed it.

115     Making Kratu Muni her priest, Rohini followed this vow.  Rati also devotedly followed this vow.  Her priest was Gautama Muni.

116     Brhaspati’s wife, Tara, devotedly followed this vow, performing it with great opulence.  Her priest was Vasista Muni.

117     Seeing what Brhaspati’s wife had done, Saci also performed this vow with great opulence.  Her priest was Brhaspati.

118     Then Svaha performed the vow with opulence greater than all others.  Her priest was Marici Muni.

119     O brahmana, when she saw this, Goddess Parvati, with folded hands, humbly bowed head, and a cheerful demeanour, spoke to Lord Siva.

120     Shri Parvati said: O master of the universe, please give me permission to follow the best of vows, a vow to please the Lord we worship.

121     O master, worshipping Lord Krishna brings all auspiciousness.  Worshipping others, giving charity, studying the Vedas, going in pilgrimage, and circumambulating the earth are not equal to one sixteenth the value of worshipping Lord Krishna.

122     A person who, seeing Him within and without, remembers Lord Krishna at every moment, is liberated even while living in this world.  Simply by seeing him, one attains liberation.

123     The dust of his lotus feet purifies the earth.  The sight of him purifies the three worlds.

124     By meditating again and again on Lord Krishna’s lotus feet, Brahma, Vishnu, Yamaraja, Sesa, Ganesa, and you have become glorious like Him.

125     One who always meditates on Lord Krishna attains Him.  He attains virtues, power, glory, intelligence, and knowledge like His.

126     By remembering Lord Krishna, meditating on Him, performing austerities for His sake, and serving Him, I have attained an exalted husband like Him.

127     In this way I have attained a very virtuous husband and sons.  I have attained everything very easily.  The desires of my heart are all fulfilled.

128     In this way I have attained a husband like you, sons like Karttikeya and Ganesa, and a father like King Himalaya, who is an incarnation of Lord Krishna Himself.

129     Women are proud of their  husband, children, and father.  How did I attain three such exalted relatives?  How?

130     Hearing Parvati’s words, Lord Siva became very pleased.  Smiling, and the hairs of his body erect, he spoke sweet words.

131     Shri Siva said: O goddess, You are Maha-Laksmi in person.  What is not attainable for you?  You have all opulences.  You have limitless powers.

132     O goddess, a person who keeps you in his home attains all opulences.  A person to whose home you do not bring opulences finds death better than life.

133     O goddess that brings happiness, it is by your power and your mercy that Brahma, Vishnu and I are able to create, maintain and destroy the universe.

134     Who is King Himalaya?  Who am I?  Who are Karttikeya and Ganesa?  Without you we are powerless.  With you we are powerful controllers of the universe.

135     The Vedas say that a chaste wife should obey her husband.  O chaste and devoted one, I order you to follow this vow.  Follow it more opulently than your predecessors.

136     Saintly Sanat-kumara will be your priest.  I will provide brahmanas, lotuses and the ingredients of worship.

137     Appoint, O beautiful one, Kuvera as your treasurer.  I will be the superintendent of charity.  Goddess Laksmi will personally give the charity.

138     Agnideva will be the cook.  Varuna will supply the water.  The yaksas will be the bearers, and Karttikeya will supervise their activities.

139     Vayu will be the sweeper, Indra will serve the meals, and Candra will be the supervisor.

140-1  Surya will say who should and should nor receive charity.  O beautiful beloved, make the offering proper for this vow, and then after that offer even more fruits and flowers to Lord Krishna.

142     Feed at least as many brahmanas as prescribed for the vow, but politely invite more, numberless brahmanas.

143     At the end of the vow give charity of gold, jewels and coral and give daksina to the priest.

144     Speaking these words, Lord Siva intructed her to follow the vow.  Parvati followed it with opulence greater than all the others.

145     O brahmana, thus I have told you of Parvati’ vow.  The brahmanas were not able to carry away all the jewels they received in charity at Parvati’s vow.

146     Now you have heard everything about this.  O Narada, now please hear of Lord Krishna’s childhood pastimes, which are newer and newer at every step.

147     After killing these great demons, Lord Krishna returned with the boys and cows to His own home, which was as opulent as Kuvera’s palace.

148     The boys told everyone what had happened in the forest.  Everyone was astonished.  Nanda was terrified.

149     Calling together the elder gopas and gopis, Nanda considered what to do.

150     Deciding to leave that place, he had the gopas prepare carts for a journey to Vrndavana.

151     Hearing Nanda’s order, the gopas, gopis, boy and girls, all prepared to leave.

152     Dressed in many colourful garment, accompanied by Krishna and Balarama, and happily singing Krishna’s glories, as they went, they travelled to Vrndavana forest.

153     Some played flutes and others played vinas, karatalas, and conchshells.

154     Some played horns and others played other musical instruments.  Some gopa boy decorated their ears with new leaves.

155     Some decorated their ears with flower buds and some with blossomed flower.  Some wore leaf-crowns and some flower-crowns.

156     Some wore forest-flower garlands and others wore garlands reaching their knees.  O king of brahmanas, in this way there were ninety million gopa boys.

157     Millions and millions of adult gopis and millions of elderly gopis with broad hips and moving breasts happily travelled in that journey.

158     O sage, wearing splendid garments and many ornaments, Radha’s beautiful, smiling, and virtuous young gopi friends happily travelled in that journey.

159     Some rode on palanquins and some on chariots.  Radha rode on a chariot of gold.

160     Nanda, Sunanda, Shridama, Giribhanu, Vibhakara, Virabhanu and Candrabhanu happily rode on elephants.

161     Along with them went jewel-decorated Queen Yasoda and Rohini.

162     Riding on a golden chariot, jewel-decorated Krishna and Balarama went with great happiness.

163     Millions and millions of gopas, young and old, went, some on horseback, some on elephant, and some in chariots.

164     Riding on bulls and donkeys and singing and playing karatalas, Nanda’s servants happily went.

165     Decorated with golden ornaments, Shri Radha’s seven billion happily smiling maidservants also went.

166     Some carried sindura, some kajjala and some garments pure like fire.

167     Some carried sandal, aguru, musk and kunkuma, some golden cup and some mirrors.

168     Some carried white camaras, some betelnuts, some ball for playing games, and some toy dolls.

169     Some beautiful girls carried foods, some toys and games, some garments and ornaments, and some flower garlands.

170     Some carried red lac, some sang songs, and some carried colourful pictures.  In this way the gopis happily went.

171     O sage, millions and millions of beautiful gopi went on palanquins, millions and millions on horseback, and millions and millions on chariots.

172     Millions and millions of carts and bulls carried a great host of possessions.

173     Millions of horses, camels, birds, and elephants bearing rider holding goads, went to Vrndavana forest.

174     O sage, arriving in Vrndavana, and seeing neither people nor houses, everyone stayed under the roots of trees or whatever they could find a suitable place.

175     Lord Krishna said to the gopas: O people, please hear My words.  In this place there are many beautiful houses.

176     Lord Krishna said: In this place many houses built by the demigods are hidden.  Without first pleasing the demigods, no one can see them.

177     O gopas, stop here and worship the goddess of this forest.  In the morning you will happily see many beautiful houses.

178     With abundance incense, lamps, flowers, sandal pate, and offerings of food, worship Goddess Parvati, who stays at the root of a banyan tree.

179     Hearing these words, the gopas worshipped the goddess, ate their supper, and then happily slept at night.