WHY IS ‘KRSNA KIRTAN’ THE BEST PROCESS TO FIND KRSNA?

WHY IS ‘KRSNA KIRTAN’ THE BEST PROCESS TO FIND KRSNA?

Srila Jiva Goswami Prabhu describes in his commentary that when the sakhis met with Radharani, they had a mood of friendship between one another, they all had the exact same mood. Radharani then spoke with tears in Her eyes. She said; “I don’t know how I went so far away from all of you. I was with Krsna, but then suddenly I realized I was all alone in the forest. Oh sakhis, what can I tell you? Madhava, who is the master of Laksmi Devi is filled with all good qualities. He is the master of all divine wealth. I don’t even understand how he brought Me aside, and then took Me out of the rasa dance. I couldn’t see that I was not with all of you. I was so absorbed in meeting Krsna, and being with Him.”,

When Krsna was dancing and singing with all the Gopis each Gopi felt Krsna was with them alone. Krsna was fully exhibiting His prowess in prema. With each Gopi, He was present and everyone had the mood that, “I am just with Krsna and Krsna is just with Me”. They did not see any of the other Gopis there.

Radharani said; “When He went with Me I couldn’t understand what was happening. Then when Krsna left Me, I was completely alone in the forest. I was so fortunate to have received such an exalted chance to be with Madhava, but then He left Me aside”.

In a mood of humility Radharani’s said; “Now I am a ‘duratma’. Krsna is present everywhere but still He has gone very far away from Me. Now I am a ‘duratma’.” If Krsna has left and gone far away from someone that person is called ‘duratma’, which means a wicked person. ‘Dur’ means far away. When the Gopis heard Radharani speak like this, they had a natural mood of friendship and love towards Her. They had a natural respect awaken. This would not be possible for Krsna.

Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura states that the Sakhis were loudly weeping and began to fan Srimati Radhika. Radharani then returned to Her senses. After this the Sakhis asked Her, “Oh tell us what happened. Where is Krsna?” Radharani then told Her Sakhis; “I don’t understand how I went so far away from you. I do not know any of this. However later I saw that I was all alone and I began to lament, and fell senseless on the ground. I have slighted all of you when I went alone with Krsna, but now Krsna has also left Me. Before He left all of you, but now He has also rejected Me. I had the mood that, ‘Krsna is leaving everyone else and took Me with Him, and all of you were left lamenting in separation’. I told Him I cannot go forward, if You want You can carry Me. This was My ‘kutilita’ crookedness. By this Krsna was perhaps slighted and therefore He left Me. Now I am experiencing extreme lamentation because Krsna has forsaken Me and gone.

This mood of humility is described by Sukadeva Goswami. Seeing Radhika’s separation, the mood of ‘viraha-rasa’ from Srimati Radhika went into the hearts of all the Gopis, and they developed an intense desire to serve and take shelter of Krsna. Now they began to pray to ‘Dayanidhi Rasika-sekhara’ Sri Krsna. 

They began to think; “Meeting Krsna was His supreme mercy. We were not at all qualified, but by His great mercy He gave us His association and affection. Then we became proud and He left us again”.

FOREST JUNGLE BECOMES TOO DEEP, DARK, AND DENSE

Then Vraja-devis again started searching for Krsna. They saw the forest and jungle was now becoming very dark. They went into a dense area of the jungle and searched there. They thought Krsna must be hidden in the deep grove of the forest. “If we go further, He will go deeper and deeper into the dark forest, therefore we will not go any further to search for Him. They thought, “We will wait here. It is too deep and dark ahead”.

The Gopis had previously gone through all the different forests groves and caves, and they had searched everywhere for Krsna. They said; “Oh we have lamented so much in separation. We will now wait here”. Previously they had been ready to continue searching, and since they were now with Radharani, they went just a little ahead and decided to wait there. 

In the Visnu Purana it states that when Krsna entered the deep forest grove it was the full moon night and it was very bright everywhere. Krsna thought they would easily find Him so he decided He must hide somewhere. 

When the gopis went into the dark forest they saw there were no rays of the full moon there, so they returned to a brighter area of the forest, that was lit by the rays of the moon. They thought Krsna had hidden in the deep dark area of the jungle so they would not continue to search for Him, as it would not be proper. They thought; “We will arrange to somehow bring Krsna out. We will not run behind Him. Instead of going further into the dark forest, we will pray to Him and through that, He will come before us”.

Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura states that when they all again searched for Krsna, the rays of the moon were helping them as if they were saying, “Go and search. I am behind you like a searchlight. I am with you and helping you. Don’t worry.” Then they went further ahead and the forest became very deep and thick and the rays of the moon could not enter there. They thought, “Ok we will not proceed any further.” 

The commentator states that by the color of Syama-Krsna’s limbs, the whole area became filled with darkness, or the Syama color. The light of the moon was not working there, so the gopis did not enter the ‘Syama’, dark area of the forest.

Now their mood changed. Why?  They thought, “Krsna’s body is very beautiful and soft and Krsna will feel some suffering and disturbance. When they met with Radharani then after that they had this mood that, “Oh Krsna will have to wander here and there in the dark forest and He may hurt His limbs or feet.”

Sukadeva Goswami said, “Oh Pariksit Maharaja the Gopis mood up to this point had been different. Now after meeting with Srimati Radharani, their mood changed and their bodies were absorbed in searching for Krsna. Every pore of their body was absorbed in Krsna and they were singing about His lilas, pastimes and qualities. They had no awareness of their own bodies.

Sridhara Swami states that even after meeting Krsna and even after He left them, they never thought of their homes or anything else. They were one-pointedly absorbed in Krsna. They were moving here and there but they did not think of anyone else aside from Krsna. In ordinary separation one thinks of so many things naturally, but when one is fully ‘tadatmika’, one at heart, then other moods cannot possibly come into the heart.

GOPIS STOP SEARCHING AND RETURN TO THE YAMUNA

Srila Jiva Goswami Prabhu states that after the Vraja-devis searched from forest to forest, they thought of Krsna’s very soft feet and how He was wandering everywhere in the forest. And at the same time, we are trying to follow behind Him. He may step on sharp stones or thorns and there are many sharp stones and sharp blades of grass here that He could step on. Since He is barefoot, we should not search anymore. We will not make Him sad or suffer because of our own sadness. Instead we should begin kirtan of Krsna’s glories and meditate on Him. We can never find Him if we continue searching for Him like this, we do not have the strength. If we stay together and from deep within our souls, we meditate on Him, and pray to Him from the bottom of our hearts, then certainly Krsna will return to us, giving us His darsana. In this way the Gopis decided what to do.

They went back to the bank of the Yamuna where they were before. Previously, they had searched and gone very deep into the different areas of the forest, finally they came back to the bank of the Yamuna and in loud voices, began to sing Krsna’s glories. Every pore of the Gopis bodies was like prayer to Krsna, “When will He come? When will He come?” 

Before they were always thinking of how they could meet with Krsna. He called them with His flute, they came and met with Him, and then He left. Now in great separation, sitting on the bank of the Yamuna, they all began to sing His glories.

Srila Sridhara Swami states here that when the Gopis came to the bank of the Yamuna, they began singing kirtans of Krsna’s glories. The mood that, “Certainly Krsna will come and give us His darsana”, became fixed in their hearts. At the time of ‘Katayani-vrata’, Krsna came to the bank of the Yamuna and during ‘Saradiya-rasa Purnima’, He also gave His darsana there. The Gopis felt that through kirtan, the power and rasa through which to attract Krsna would manifest.

Srila Jiva Goswami states that the Gopis searched everywhere for Krsna but now their mood changed. They thought, “We should sit. His feet are very soft and the sharp stones, thorns and grasses of the forest could cut them. It is like we are chasing Him and He is fleeing from us. He will suffer because of his so we should sit down and do kirtan and Krsna will come to us.” After they met with Srimati Radharani this faith came. They thought that certainly Krsna will come back to us. In this way they went to the bank of the Yamuna and in loud voices began kirtan to glorify Krsna.

Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura says the gopis were saying, “Alas, Alas. For how long will we run here and there in the jungle? Wherever we go we are finding only sadness and suffering and we are giving Him suffering too by making Him run everywhere to hide from us.”

Those who become completely surrendered, the Lord will not be far away. There will be no need to chase the Lord. Therefore, we only need to perform ‘nama-sankirtana’. Krsna and His names are non-different. If you sit in a pure place with others and then all together sing ‘Krsna-kirtan’, then through the power of this kirtan, Krsna will definitely come, because He is non-different from his names. 

In this way this chapter of Rasa-pancadhyayi is complete. This is the end of the third chapter of Rasa-pancadhyayi. Sukadeva Goswami described that the Gopis determined this best process to find Krsna which is Krsna-kirtan. (CLICK ON THE TITLE TO READ THE COMPLETE ARTICLE)

WHAT IS REAL ‘VIRAHA’ – SEPARATION?

WHAT IS REAL ‘VIRAHA’ – SEPARATION?

What is our prayer, is it sadness or a request? In which way are we expressing the moods of our heart? Is it pure or mixed? Is it filled with poison or is it mixed with the Lord’s transcendental shakti? Someone cries and is sad when they are disrespected or offended. Someone cries because they don’t get the objects of their enjoyment, the objects that they desire. Some people cry because they don’t get respect in this world. Some people cry because they love someone but they don’t receive love in return from that person, even though they have offered everything to their beloved, they do not receive any love.

This is all included within one’s own selfishness. We must learn to tolerate everything for the satisfaction and pleasure of our Lord. We endeavor to please and satisfy ourselves, but when we cannot be successful in this and our desires are not fulfilled, what do we do? We begin to cry alone. When we can not tolerate any longer, we will cry very loudly even in front of others. The cry of a child or an adult to express one’s own sadness, is not real ‘viraha’ – separation. This is not based on a real relationship. If someone’s husband, father, or son dies, they cry for some time and then forget them. They eat and live life as normal.

Once the Queen in Jagannatha Puri Orissa, came to Srila Prabhupada after her had son died. He was called Nila-Bhavan. The Queen was crying so much, so one day the sevaka who was with Prabhupada said; “Oh Prabhupada she is not fit to receive your mercy or to accept the knowledge you are giving, your ‘tattva-jnana’. She is bound within her own material attachment and cannot be freed from this covering. If someone does not have ‘sevonmukha-vrtii’, then how will they have the ability to accept the mercy of the Guru-varga? They have not done any service. They are attached to family, son and so forth. If you like I will speak with the King”.

The sevaka spoke with the King and he advised him to bring a large amount of gold and put it in front of the Queen, hundreds of kilos of gold from your treasury. Then she will become absorbed in thinking about the gold and taking care of the gold and will forget her son.

The King thought, “Ok I have tried everything else and it has not worked, so I will try this now”. He brought so much gold, silver, diamonds, jewels and many baskets of gold ornaments, and threw it all around. He scattered it in the garden, in the kitchen and in the different areas of the palace. Wherever she walked she would see the jewels and ornaments and put it in her pockets, smile and laugh. The next day he did it again, for 3 or 4 days he did this. Gradually collecting and maintaining all these ornaments she forgot her son. Otherwise before she would take the dead body of her son, embrace it and cry and wail very loudly like a mad lady.

HAVING PROPER FAITH

When I was in Mathura, we had a brahmacari who was very thin and sickly. He could not be fixed by any medicine. One day there was the Acarya of the Catur-Vedi-Vidyali a University for Brahmans. We asked him what we should do for the brahmacari as no medicine was working. He said; “Let him count the money everyday. Just give him the job of counting all the notes and then he will become fat. He doesn’t need anything else. A sad person becomes thin because they are always thinking, “Oh I am so poor. I have no money”. Then we gave this brahmacari the work of counting all the notes. If any notes were broken, I would tell him to keep them with him. He collected all these old notes and he felt like, “Oh I have something with me. They have faith in me. Now they must consider me as their own”.

 
Once Gurudeva called me and said; “Do you have faith that if you ask me for 30,000 rupees I will give it to you?” I said; “If you want you can give it. If you don’t want you won’t give it”.
Gurudeva said; “If you don’t have faith that I will give you 30,000 rupees, then how will you have faith that I will give you pure love of God, Bhagavat-prema”? I thought, “Oh from where has he taken me”? He said: “If you don’t have faith that I will give you 30,000 rupees, then how will you have faith that I will give you the transcendental wealth of prema? It means you don’t have the faith that I have the ability to give this to you”. We can not mix everything into one. One person cries day and night like a mad person. Is that viraha? Is this vipralambha? Is this the same as Mahaprabhu’s weeping?

 
At the time of Ratha-yatra, Mahaprabhu was weeping so powerfully that the tears from His eyes would shoot forth like spray jets and shower onto all the devotees around Him. Bhaktivinoda Thakura prays ***sravanera dhara..??? (:7:57) from his eyes tears were flowing like a rain storm in the monsoon season. This separation and material people’s weeping and sadness is that the same? If we want to understand this properly then we should study ‘Rasa-pancadhyayi’.

GOPIS AMAZING MOODS

It is said that when all the Vraja-devis were dancing, playing and singing with Krsna for the entire night of Brahma. They had the chance to meet with Krsna and serve Him. He would always glorify and praise them. Through various verses He would glorify them and sing kirtans with their names. On the other side the Gopis were praising Krsna through kirtan and glorifying His beautiful form and qualities. In this way they were having a divine competition.

Krsna’s complexion and form would continue changing for each Gopi. The Gopis also manifested so many amazing moods. Radharani was given the name Gandharvika and Krsna received the name Giridhari. In this way they became Gandharvika-Giridhari and they also received the name Naval Kisora because they had such beautiful forms in their meeting.

 
WHY DID KRSNA DISAPPEAR?

After their meeting, when Krsna disappeared, in their sadness and separation from Krsna they said; “Krsna should not be so cruel”. He called them, so they left everything and came to Krsna. They gave up everything and surrendered to Him, so why did Krsna leave them? Was there any fault? They had some pride, in their good fortune.

Does that mean they should be forsaken? Then where is mercy? Where is magnanimity? Is there any shortness in God Himself? If Bhagavan becomes angry with His devotees then who will accept them? No one will accept them. Therefore you should not give any fault to God, there cannot be any fault in God’s activities. We may be at fault and therefore we look to the faults of everyone else, but Bhagavan has no faults.

 
Then why did Krsna leave them? Why did the Gopis have to roll about, weep, and lament so much? While searching through the forests in separation from Krsna. He gave them shelter and then after they surrendered everything, He rejected them! This is not the fault of Krsna.

How do you make a nice clay pot? First you take clay, then you soak it, then sift it, then cook it, then when it starts to dry a little you beat it, then you mix water again, then you dry it and then beat it again. Is it ready now? No, it’s not finished. Then you put it on ash in the fire and burn it. After that you put on another layer and again put it in the fire. In this way you make it black. Until the pot has become black, it is not ready. The clay pot will become black like coal. You put different layers on it then and after each layer you put it back in the fire. Now it becomes so strong it becomes like stone. All the power that is within stone, the clay pot will be even stronger. It becomes very shiny and you can cook anything in it now. Even if you try cooking with a raw pot then after two days it will disintegrate. When you cook it in the fire again and again and prepare even more layers again and again, then it will be completely strong and sand black. At that time, it will be even stronger than stone. A stone will break before the pot will break. Now you know it is ready.

In Vraja, Krsna witnessed this fire of the Vraja-devis separation. They had not seen ‘Krsna- viraha’, they had their own separation. Bhagavan can also have viraha. When Krsna left with Srimati Radharani, He was carrying Her. She said; “Look all the gopis are nearby. If they see Me with You, they will argue and fight with You, causing some problem. Let us go. I am very tired and cannot walk anymore, if you want you can carry Me but I cannot go further. Together we have come so far into the forest.” 

Radharani desired to give mercy and shelter to the Gopis. She thought about how Krsna had left them, and how they were wandering deep into the different forests, and felt they should be given mercy. She thought, “If we proceed even further into the forest and if Krsna is not pleased with Gopis and He does not accept the them again, then it will become very difficult for them.” (CLICK ON THE TITLE TO READ THE FULL ARTICLE)

HOW DID KRSNA SERVE AND DECORATE RADHARANI?

HOW DID KRSNA SERVE AND DECORATE RADHARANI?

Krsna who is param premi’, the topmost beloved, served His dear most Srimati Radhika. He picked flowers and decorated Her hair and braid. Before this some Gopis had enmity and jealousy toward Radharani, but seeing how the Lord had served Her, some good mood came within them and they had the realization of how dear she was to the Lord. The Gopis came to this place where the Lord Himself served His beloved with so much love and affection and this caused Krsna’s mood of love and respect for Radharani to enter their hearts. They began to think; “How did Krsna serve Her”? They began to directly experience these things as if it was happening before their eyes. You can go to places where you see people are always talking about material subjects and this will adversely affect your mind.

The Gopis were present there in such an exalted place where the Lord had served Srimati Radharani, and they began to think; “How did Krsna serve Her”? They began to directly experience these things as if it was happening before their eyes.

When Srila Gurudeva was in Mathura, he used to say; “Serve the devotees! By serving the sadhus, all their good qualities, and the love they have for God will naturally come within your heart. This is the method to gain love of God. Otherwise by your own practice it is not possible, but if you serve the devotees, it can easily be attained. If you become absorbed in serving maya, then so many more lifetimes will pass fruitlessly. If you want to achieve siddhi, perfection, then serve the sadhus and naturally good qualities will come within you.

First become established in your own bhajana, otherwise if you go here and there maya will influence you and materialistic people will colour you with their moods. On the other side, if you are always absorbed in hari bhakti in the association of devotees then you will be firmly situated and established in devotion. Sthane sthitah, become firmly situated and fixed in this devotion and with the help of good association you will become strong and able to help others.

The Gopis said; “Oh look, this beloved Gopi sat on Krsna`s shoulders”! They then began to think; “Oh, look how Krsna has served Her”. Were they imagining this? They had not directly seen it. Then the gopis said; “Look at these footprints, we can see where Krsna has picked Her up”!

IMPORTANCE OF FLOWERS

If you go to South India you will see that the ladies always wear flowers in their hair. Generally we do not see it so much here in North India. In South India it is very common to see ladies in the streets and markets, with their hair, and braids decorated with flowers. If you see them in their homes they are even more nicely decorated with flowers. This is the custom there. They sing and dance in the morning do Rangoli, a very beautiful decoration that is done outside their homes in the soil. How they do it? Amazingly it is even more perfect then if machine had done it.

The Lord Himself learned from the Gopis how to serve and decorate with flowers and He began to use these skills they had taught Him to serve Srimati Radhika. In this way Krsna, decorated Her hair, and gave Her flower bracelets, gold belts and so forth. If a person comes in contact with different kinds of flowers when he is weak or tired, then he will become full of energy. If you take a flower garland on your head or around your neck, so much transcendental energy will come within you. In Bengal you will see all the temples there have so many nice flower garlands. When the temples open up at four in the afternoon, you will see so many nice flowers like rajne gandha, and the Deities will have a garland around their neck, on their hands, their feet and on their crowns. They are always being served like this. Just as when Indian girls come to their new home after their wedding, they will be decorated very nicely with so many flowers.

If you want to purify your consciousness you should take sat sanga. And flowers are the most sat or pure and full of goodness, they have no hypocrisy, no deceitfulness, and they are so honest. By the association of flowers and by wearing these flowers, your consciousness can change. Flowers do not wish ill of anyone and they are always serving. If you take these prasad flower garlands (flower garlands that have been offered to Deities or sadhus), they can give you a kind of ‘darshana’ and help you progress in bhakti. Why are these flowers like campaka, so dear to the Lord? Because they are full of honesty and goodness, they have no deceitfulness, therefore the Lord decorates Srimati Radhika with them.

To decorate with flowers, first you put a flower garland around the head and then put small little garlands dangling around it. In the front you put flowers that hang down on either side of the head and go to the cheeks and by the ears. Usually there is more than one garland around the neck. In India, if you go to someone`s wedding you can see in some places how the whole body will be covered in flower garlands from head to toe, and you cannot even see the person anymore.

Western flowers have no good scent only some color which is like plastic. Only Indian flowers have so much fragrance, so much softness. But western flowers have some nice color, but no nice scent and they are not soft, they are very hard. Sometimes Gurudeva would say; “People in the western countries would offer me flower garlands, red, yellow, blue, etc. but they have no fragrance or softness, they are just like artificial flowers”.

The Gopis saw on the ground some broken flowers that had fallen off the garland that Krsna had used to decorate Radharani. Many times Krsna had tried to decorate Radharani with flowers in Vraja, but She wouldn’t let Him. Then Krsna performed the “Keshava Vrata” for a month in order to get a chance to decorate Radharani at Srngara Vata. For a whole month He was worshipping Radharani and learning from Visakha how to serve Her, and for the chance to decorate Her hair. He said to Radharani; “My name is Keshava and Kesh means hair and Keshava means, one who decorates the hair, so let me make the name Keshava successful by being able to serve and decorate Your hair”.

If Keshava Krsna, cannot learn how to serve, then how will He teach anyone else? Krsna took admission into the school of the Gopis at Seva Kunj and at Srngara Vata. Under the guidance of Visakha Devi, Krsna took a vow and leaned how to serve and do srngara. Krsna is always taking service, but if He is not serving Himself how will He learn how to do that? Krsna said; “Seva dharma, to serve is our religion! If you do seva then you can easily understand this”. Krsna felt fortunate at the time of ‘Rasa Lila’ because he had this chance to serve Radharani. Visvanath Cakravarti Thakura and the rasika acaryas have described how this ‘ramani’, beloved Radharani, had Her hair decorated by Krsna and sat on His shoulders. This was all arranged by the Vana Devata, the forest god, who is very tricky. (CLLICK ON THE TITLE TO READ THE COMPLETE ARTICLE)

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