Saturday, December 31, 2005

Jaya Sri Radhey!

Mother Kirtida shows baby Radha a picture of Krishna

Picture by an unknown artist. This is something I came across in Vrindavan this last kartika time. If you don't know it already, Radharani is the feminine aspect of God and Krishna's eternal consort. Below is a lecture our Guru Maharaja gave on her appearance day in 1995 in Gadeigiri Orissa. It appeared in issue 110 of our KK Bindu mag.

The Appearance of
Srimati Radharani

Sri Srimad Gour Govinda Swami Maharaja

The Brahma-vaivarta Purana describes that once, in the transcendental abode of Vrindavan, Krishnachandra was sitting on a golden throne under a madhavi creeper. He was thinking of how to further relish the nectarean mellows of his pastimes. Due to this thought, by his mere will, Srimati Radharani appeared from the left side of his body. Radharani’s form was the color of molten gold and was decorated with various ornaments. On her braid was a flower bouquet; on her breast a garland of pearls (mukta mala); and around her waist hung an ornamented belt (mekhala). Beautiful golden earrings adorned her ears, and the anklets (nupura) on her feet produced a tinkling sound.

Radha is the enchanter of Madhava — radha-madhava-mohini. In the rasa dance she gave so much pleasure to him, but still she considered how to give him even more pleasure. As soon as she desired this, immediately innumerable gopis, all looking like Srimati, immediately expanded from her body.

In the Padma Purana, uttara-khanda, Shivaji told Parvati about the appearance of Radha: “Vrishabhanu Maharaja was a great devotee of the Lord. His chaste and devoted wife was named Kirtida. It is from her womb that jagan-mata, the mother of the whole world, Sri Radha, took birth. This auspicious appearance of Brajeswari occurred at noon on the eighth day of the bright fortnight in the month of Bhadrava. Seeing that such a beautiful daughter was born to the king, all the gopa families of Gokul became very joyful. Everyone’s desires were fulfilled. King Vrishabhanu gave immense charity to the brahmanas, vaisnavas, musicians, dancers and poor men.

Sri Sri Radha Gopaljiu in Gadeigiri

“One day, Narada Muni came to the quarters of King Vrishabhanu to have darsana of Radharani. The sage inquired about his and the kingdom’s welfare. In a humble mood, the king replied, ‘Because of your mercy, everything is auspicious. You are such a great sadhu. Wherever you go becomes a tirtha. By your grace, everyone can get hari-bhakti.’

“Saying this, Vrishabhanu Maharaja placed his daughter, whose eyes were still closed, on the lap of Narada Muni. By the touch of Radharani, the sage became ecstatic, the hairs on his body stood on end, and tears like torrential rain flowed from his eyes. In his heart, Narada Muni began to offer prayers to the little girl.

“’You are hari-priya, dear to Lord Hari; mahabhava-svarupa, the personification of the highest love; govinda-mohini, the enchanter of Govinda; krsna-prana-rupa, the life and soul of Krishna; ananda-svarupa, the very embodiment of bliss. You are bhakti and tapa. All of the demigods headed by Brahma and Shiva meditate on your lotus feet. All of Krishna’s consorts such as the gopis, the queens in Dwarka, and even Mahalakshmi are plenary portions of you. Throughout the universe you are known as adi-sakti, the original potency.’

“Hearing the prayers of Narada Muni, Radharani mercifully showed her form to him. The muni beheld a vision of Radhika seated upon a throne studded with divine gems, under the shade of a wish-fulfilling tree. Innumerable sakhis, some fanning her, some waving camaras, and others holding a white umbrella over her head, surrounded her. Brajeswari’s body was covered with beautiful transcendental garments. Her forehead was decorated with designs drawn with sindhura and a glow emanated from her body. By her mercy, Radharani revealed this beautiful form to Narada Muni, and he alone could see it.

“All the while, Radhika, in the form of a baby, was lying on the lap of Narada Muni. Narada Muni returned the child to her father, seated with his queen before the great rsi. The sage said, ‘You are most fortunate, maha-bhagyavan, because you have such a wonderful daughter. Kamala, Parvati, Arundhati, Sachi, Satyabhama — are all just plenary portions or portions of plenary portions of Radharani. No one is as dear to Lord Hari as she. Because of your daughter, all of Gokul will be filled with opulence. Do not feel sorry that you have a girl. Because of her, your glory will spread far and wide.’

Srila Gour Govinda Swami's
palm leaf Oriya Bhagavatam

“With folded hands, King Vrishabhanu asked, ‘Who will be her husband?’ The great sage replied, ‘She will be the wife of the supreme purusa. And in the course of time her eyes will open.’ Saying this, Narada Muni left.”

After hearing this account, Parvati inquired of Shivaji, “Why were Radharani’s eyes not open?”

Shivaji said: “O Devi, this is another wonderful story. When Lord Hari wanted to descend to this material world, he called Radha and said, ‘You, too, will take birth there with me. We will manifest wonderful lilas together.’

“Then Radha said, ‘O my dear lotus-eyed Hari, if I take birth in the material world I will be so distressed. How can I bear to see other men? I only want to see you. I refuse to look upon the form of another.’

Krishna said, ‘O Devi, please do not feel such anxiety. Your desire will be fulfilled.’

Srila Prabhupada and disciples walk in Mayapur
Srila Gour Govinda Swami is just behind Prabhupada

“Lord Hari took birth as the son of Nanda Maharaja in order to protect the sadhus – sadhu raksa kare. Radha took birth from the womb of Kirtida as the daughter of Vrishabhanu.

“Because of the birth of the divine couple, the whole universe became exuberant. But Radha’s eyes were not open. Seeing this, Kirtida Maharani was alarmed.”

Parvati then inquired, “Please tell me how Radharani opened her eyes.”

Shivaji said, “I will tell you. Simply by hearing this account one receives transcendental happiness.

“King Vrishabhanu held a great festival on the auspicious occasion of his daughter’s birth. He invited all the cowherd men and women, extending a special invitation to Nanda Maharaja and Yashodarani. Nanda Maharaja and his wife arrived at the palace of King Vrishabhanu by bullock cart.

Srila Gour Govinda Swami at
Gopal's temple in Gadeigiri Orissa

“Maharaja Vrishabhanu welcomed Nanda Maharaja, embracing him. Kirtida welcomed Yasoda-mata, embracing her.

“The magnificent festival continued; all different kinds of instruments were played — kettle-drums, bugles, violins, vina, etc. Meanwhile, in the inner quarters of the palace, Sri Radha was sleeping in her cradle. Lord Hari, who is the antaryami, supersoul in the hearts of all living entities knew this.

“Unnoticed by anyone, baby Krishna went to Radharani. Seeing the face of his consort, KrishnaKrishna, she immediately opened her eyes and saw his face. They had eye to eye union, Radha and Krishna. Both of them were very, very blissful. smiled, laughing in his mind. Then, he put his lotus palm over her eyes. As soon as she felt the touch of

“At that time, Kirtida came there and saw what had happened. Taking the baby girl onto her lap, she happily exclaimed, ‘Krishna gave eyes to Radha. Therefore this girl will be very dear to Krishna.’ Hearing this, Mother Yasoda’s heart was filled with joy.”

This is the inconceivable lila of Krishna. By the mercy of Hari and guru it is described in Brahma-vaivarta Purana and Padma Purana.

Srimati radharani ki jaya!
Kana-mana-mohini radharani ki jaya!
Vrndavana-vilasini radharani ki jaya!
Asta-sakhi-siromani radharani ki jaya!
Vrsabhanu nandini srimati radharani ki jaya!

No comments: