By: Mahanidhi Swami

Because she has the same mood, name, qualities and birthdate as Radhika, Vishakha-devi is Radhika’s nearest and dearest girlfriend among the eight confidential sakhis (asta-sakhis). Radha is the name of a star, nakshatra, and Vishakha is another name of that star.

Vishakha has a deep loving friendship with Kishori and she is the abode of Radha’s confidence. Vishakha, who conquers the eloquence of goddess Sarasvati, greatly pleases Sriji whenever she defeats Shyama with her expertise in speaking intimate joking words.

Vishakha always represents the interests of Isvari Radha. For example, during the Holi color squirting wars, Radha sends Vishakha to the opposing party led by Krishna so that Vishakha can monitor Krishna’s movements. At other times, Vishakha acts to incite Krishna’s attraction for Swamini Radha. In his Ujjvala-nilamani tika (Dutibheda 87), Srila Visvanatha Cakravartipada tells a beautiful lila to illustrate this wonderful seva of Vishakha-sakhi.

One day, Radha called Vishakha to Her side and whispered in her ear, “O sakhi Vishakhe! You know everything about Me, and you are a most expert speaker. Take some sakhis with you, and on the pretext of picking flowers go just near where Krishna is playing.

“Pretending not to see Shyama, you should speak casually with your girlfriends about the supremacy of My form, qualities and love just loud enough so Krishna hears.

“Krishna will then ask you, ‘Hey sakhi, whose wonderful sweetness are you glorifying?’ You should reply nonchalantly, ‘O, no one’s’ and remain silent. Krishna will then say, ‘Sakhi, why are you afraid to tell Me? That’s okay, I already understand who you are talking about, and I have a very confidential relationship with that girl.’

Radha continues, “Then Vishakha you should say, ‘I don’t believe You because You two are so different from each other. How can You be related to Radha?’

When Krishna replies saying, ‘What difference?’ you should explain. Tell Shyama, ‘You are a debauchee and Radha is chaste and devoted to her husband. You are whimsical and Radhika is steady and even-minded. You are impious and Priyaji is religious and devoted to the demigods. You are dirty full of Vraja-raja and go-dhuli, but Radha bathes thrice daily and dresses in new clothes.’

“Krishna will then say, ‘Please take Me to Radha so I can see Her.’ Vishakha, you should reply, ‘Radha will never look at You!’ In response, Krishna will say ‘That’s okay. I will feel blessed if I can look at Radha even from afar!’

“Vishakha, you should say, ‘So Shyama just how will You do that?’ Krishna will answer, ‘Today I will personally install a deity of the Sungod in a cave of Govardhana Hill. You bring Radha to see that Deity, and hiding nearby I will be satisfied just by seeing Radha from the back. Vishakha, if you are really kind upon Me then just arrange for Me to touch Radha’s feet.’

Then you should say, ‘For that seva what reward will you give me?’ Krishna will reply, ‘Sakhi, I will sell My very self to you!’ Vishakha, you should then say, ‘Okay Madhava, just wait and I will fulfill all your desires!’

Vishakha, then quickly come back and take Me to My beloved sweetheart Shyama.”

Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

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