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Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

The minds of most people are filled with thoughts, which change from moment to moment. Like ocean waves, these thoughts, arise in the ocean of the mind, stay awhile and then disappear in the murky waters of forgetfulness—never to be thought again.

Devotees, however, try to still the ocean of thoughts by always thinking, remembering and speaking about the sweet and satisfying names, forms and pastimes of Radha and Krishna. In this regard, Sri Suka Muni says, “Devotees, who have accepted the essence of life, only talk about the ever-fresh topics of Acyuta Sri Krishna at every moment, satamsarabhrtamprati-kshanam, navya-vadacyutasyayat sadhu varta.” (Srimad Bhagavatam 10.13.2)

The practice of remembering Sri Krishna is so powerful and purifying that just by this one can attain liberation from birth and death, even while living. Think of Krishna—Go to Krishna!

The Vedas say, “One who remembers Sri Hari at every moment is liberated even while living in this world, harihsmrtihanukshanamjivanmuktasya.” (Brahma Vivarta Purana 4.16.122)

For Gaudiya Vaisnavas, the teachings of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu are the essence of all spiritual instructions on how to attain the perfection of Krishna prema. In the following dialogue, Mahaprabhu reveals the importance of remembering Radha and Krishna and Their divine Vrajalilas.

Mahaprabhu said, “O Ramananda Raya! What should one always remember?”

Ramananda Raya: “One should mainly remember Sri Krishna’s name, qualities and pastimes, Krishna nama, guna, lila pradhana smarana.”

Mahaprabhu: “Among all the topics one can listen to, which is the best, sravanamadhyeshreshthasravana?”

Ramananda Raya: “The best topic is Radha-Krishna’s transcendental, amorous affairs that are a nectar tonic for the ears, Radha Krishna prema kelikarnarasayan.” (Caitanya Caritamrta. 2.8.252, 255)

During His youth, Nimai Pandita’s Sanskrit students once asked Prabhu a question about perfecting letters (varna siddha). Mahaprabhu replied in an equivocal way, which actually gives the answer to all questions, the solution of all problems, and the best means to attain spiritual perfection in human life. At that time, Mahaprabhu said, “Remember Sri Krishna at every moment, prabhu bale sarvakshanasrikrishnasmarana! (Caitanya Bhagavata 2.1.254)

In pursuance of Gauranga Mahaprabhu’s instruction to remember Krishna from moment to moment, we present the following outline of one transcendentally blissful, ever-new and fresh day in the loving lives of Sri Sri Radha and Krishna in Gokula Vrindavana.

Throughout the day, many people look at their mobiles to find out the time, weather, road conditions, news, sms messages, missed calls etc. If one keeps this asta-kaliya-lila outline on his/her phone, then one can always tune into the spiritual world, and thereby experience the peace and bliss of remembering Krishna from moment to moment.

We pray that the sensitive devotional readers will fill their minds and hearts with these pastimes, and thereby always think of Krishna from moment to moment. This outline can be saved on mobiles, pc’s or even printed out for constant review and relish of love divine.

Radha-Krishna lila smarana ki jai! Jaya Jaya Sri Radhe!

SRI SRI RADHA KRISHNA**** ASTA KALIYA LILA

Period  One   Pastimes at the End of Night (3:36 a.m.—6:00 a.m.) Niśānta-līlā

3:36 a.m.—4:24 a.m.

The sakhīs’ morning services
The birds awaken Rādhā-Mādhava
The pleasure fatigue
Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa’s sweet fatigue

4:24 a.m.—5:36 a.m.

Mañjarīs’ services and Kṛṣṇa’s agitation
Female parrots speak to Rādhā
The male parrots speak to Kṛṣṇa
The sakhīs joy in seeing Rādhā& the pleasure bed

5:36 a.m.—6:00 a.m.

Forgetting to go home and Kakkhatī’s poetry
Rādhā’s lamentation and sleeping

 

Period Two   Morning Pastimes (6:00 a.m.—8:24 a.m.) Prātaḥ-līlā

6:00 a.m.—6:24 a.m.

The mañjarīs activities and Rādhā’s abode
Performing services for Rādhā
Dawn and arrival of Mukharā
Rādhā awakens
Talks with ŚyāmalāSakhī
Madhurikā Sakhī describes Kṛṣṇa’s waking and milking cows
Milking the cows
Rādhā’s condition &Śyāmalā’s departure
Rādhā brushes Her teeth
Kalāvatī narrates Kṛṣṇa’s cow-milking pastime

6:24 a.m.—6:48 a.m.

Rādhā’s bath and dressing

6:48 a.m.—7:36 a.m.

Hiraṇyāṅgī Sakhī describes Kṛṣṇa’s wrestling match
Kṛṣṇa’s dress & ornaments
Kundalatā takes Rādhā to Nanda’s house
Joking with the sakhīs
Tuṅgavidyā describes Nandīśvara
Seeing Kṛṣṇa at the entrance gate
Rādhā meets Yaśodā
Yaśodā’s cooking instructions
Rādhā & Rohiṇī cook
Yaśodā inspects the preparations

7:36 a.m.—8:24 a.m.

Serving and eating
The breakfast joking
Kṛṣṇa loses His appetite upon seeing Rādhā
The sakhīs eat

 

Period Three   Forenoon Pastimes (8:24 a.m.—10:48 a.m.) Purvāhna-līlā

8:24 a.m.—9:12 a.m.

Kṛṣṇa’s dressing & meeting His friends
Service items for forest playing
The gopīs’ responses to Kṛṣṇa’s leaving
Yaśodā instructs Kṛṣṇa
Bidding farewell to the Vrajavāsīs
Rādhā’s plans to meet Kṛṣṇa

9:12 a.m.—10:00 a.m.

Description of Kṛṣṇa& His friends
The Vṛndāvana forest and the boy’s sports
The forest welcomes Kṛṣṇa
Kṛṣṇa sees Rādhā everywhere
Dhaniṣṭhā’s news & Kṛṣṇa’s water sports
Picnic & Kusuma Sarovara meeting
Tulasī brings news of Rādhā
Śaibyā Sakhī deceived

10:00 a.m.—10:48 a.m.

Rūpa-mañjarī describes Rādhā’s anguish
Rādhā goes to Rādhā-kuṇḍa
Description of Lalitānanda-da Kuñja

 

Period Four   Midday Pastimes (10:48 a.m.—3:36 p.m.) Madhyāhna-līlā

10:48 a.m.—11:12 a.m.

Rādhā’s attraction to Kṛṣṇa
Power of Kṛṣṇa’s flute
Tulasī-mañjarī brings news of Kṛṣṇa
Dhaniṣṭhā describes the beauty of spring
The love journey to Kṛṣṇa
Kṛṣṇa sends Vṛndā to bring Rādhā
Rādhā, Vṛndā and Kundalatā’s discussion
Rādhā-Govinda’s mutual vision
Kṛṣṇa’s joy on meeting Rādhā

11:12 a.m.—11:36 a.m.

Conversations while picking flowers
Rādhā’s ownership of the forest
A clever conversation
Kṛṣṇa embraces Rādhā
Lalitā jokes with Kṛṣṇa

11:36 a.m.—12:00 p.m.

Flute stealing pastimes
Kṛṣṇa enters Rādhā’s bower

12:00 p.m.—12:24 p.m.

Description of Rādhā

12:24 p.m.—1:12 p.m.

Service of the six seasons
Beauty of Vṛndāvana
Service of the creepers
Rādhā’s pretense of anger
The Spring Forest

1:12 p.m.—1:36 p.m.

Spring festival of Holī
Summer forest pastimes
Entering the monsoon forest
Swing pastimes
The autumn forest
The winter forest
The dewy season forest
Rādhā transformations in prema
Pastimes of drinking madhvikā nectar

1:36 p.m.—2:00 p.m.

Sleeping pastimes
Talks about Rādhā’s intimacy

2:00 p.m.—2:24 p.m.

Divine water sports in Rādhā-kuṇḍa
Dressing at the lotus pavilion
Forest lunch

2:24 p.m.—2:48 p.m.

The parrots glorify Kṛṣṇa’s beautiful form

2:48 p.m.—3:12 p.m.

The parrots describe Kṛṣṇa’s divine qualities

3:12 p.m.—3:36 p.m.

The sakhīs praise Rādhā’s elegant form
The female parrot describe the sakhīs
The gambling match
Sun-god worship

 

Period Five   Afternoon Pastimes (3:36 p.m.—6:00 p.m.) Aparāhna-līlā

3:36 p.m.—4:00 p.m.

Candanakalā Sakhī relieves Rādhā

4:00 p.m.—4:24 p.m.

Rādhā cooks Kṛṣṇa’s favorite five sweets

4:24 p.m.—4:48 p.m.

Rādhā praises Kṛṣṇa’s flute

4:48 p.m.—6:00 p.m.

The sakhīs receive the returning Kṛṣṇa
The meeting of Rādhā-Mādhava

 

Period Six   Dusk Pastimes (6:00 p.m.—8:24 p.m.) Sāyāhna-līlā

6:00 p.m.—6:24 p.m.

The attractive features of Kṛṣṇa
Tulasī relieves Rādhā
Yaśodā’s motherly affection for Kṛṣṇa

6:24 p.m.—6:48 p.m.

Kṛṣṇa’s bath
Kṛṣṇa&Balarāma’s meal

6:48—8:24 p.m.

Kṛṣṇa milks the cows

 

Period Seven   Evening Pastimes (8:24 p.m.—10:48 p.m.) Pradośa-līlā

8:24 p.m.—8:48 p.m.

Induprabhā Sakhī brings Rādhā news of Kṛṣṇa
Kṛṣṇa’s sleeping chamber
Kṛṣṇa describes Rādhā’s beauty
Subala describes Rādhā’s separation
Nanda entertains Kṛṣṇa

8:48 p.m.—10:00 p.m.

Kṛṣṇa goes to His bedroom
Rādhā’s evening meal

10:00 p.m.—10:24 p.m.

Kṛṣṇa goes to meet Rādhā
Rādhā describes Kṛṣṇa’s beauty
Lalitā comforts Rādhā and their departure
Description of Govinda-sthali Yogapitha

10:24 p.m.—10:48 p.m.

Meeting Kṛṣṇa
Kṛṣṇa searches for Rādhā

 

Period Eight   Midnight Pastimes (10:48 p.m.—3:36 a.m.) Niśa-līlā

10:48 p.m.—11:12 p.m.

Vṛndā serves Rādhā-Mādhava
Pastimes in the forest
Glory of the forest

11:12 p.m.—1:12 a.m.

The rāsa dance begins
Rāsa-līlā

1:12 a.m.—1:36 a.m.

Rest & more dancing

1:36 a.m.—2:00 a.m.

Drinking party
Rādhā-Mādhava’s intimate pastimes
Pastimes with other gopīs

2:00 a.m.—2:24 a.m.

Water pastimes

2:24 a.m.—2:48 a.m.

Dressing, eating and resting

2:48 a.m.—3:12 a.m.

The mañjarīs serve Rādhā-Mādhava

3:12 a.m.—3:36 a.m.

Rādhā-Mādhava’s confidential pastimes
Mādhava enjoys the other gopīs

Radha-Krishna lila smarana ki jai! Remembering Radha Govinda moment to moment ki jai! Jaya Jaya Sri Radhe!

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

For the last 500 years, Gaudiya Vaisnava acharyas have directed their students to chant Hare Krishna nama japa while remembering, even in a small way, the eternal Vraja lila of Radha and Krishna.

This practice is called japa with lila-smaran. The Gaudiya Vaisnava mahajanas have written several famous books to acquaint sadhakas with Radha-Govinda Yugala’s eight-fold daily pastimes i.e. asta-kaliya-lila in the spiritual realm, i.e. Krishnainika Kaumudi, Govinda Lilamrita, Krishna Bhavanamrta and Bhavanasara Sangraha.

However, we have often heard followers of Sri Bhaktivedanta Srila Prabhupada repeatedly tell all newcomers and each other, “Srila Prabhupada said, ‘No need to think of Krishna’s lilas. Just chant japa and HEAR THE NAME!’”

Agreed! Each of Sri Krishna’s transcendental eternal names is a complete, totally pure cintamani gem that will fulfil all desires. But if one examines Srila Prabhupada’s teachings, one finds that right from the very beginning of his spiritual mission, Prabhupada was directing disciples to chant japa AND MEDITATE ON KRISHNA LILA!

Not only that, but in his BBT KRSNA BOOK published in 1969, Srila Prabhupada even encourages his disciples to practice asta-kaliya-lila smaran by recommending they READ the classic Radha-Krishna asta-kaliya lila grantha, “Krishna Bhavanamrita” written by the great Vraja rasik Sri Visvanatha Cakravartipada.

The following direct quotes of Srila Prabhupada give very clear instructions about the practice and benefits of lila smaran while chanting Hare Krishna nama japa.

51 years ago in 1968, a disciple asked, “Srila Prabhupada, is it offensive to think of Krishna’s pastimes while chanting?” Srila Prabhupada: “You should know that it is not offensive, but rather IT IS REQUIRED!” (bbt folio: Letter, 4Dec.1968)

While commenting on the Srimad Bhagavatam “gopi yugal-gita”, Srila Prabhupada said, “By constantly CHANTING the Hare Krishna mantra AND REMEMBERING the transcendental pastimes of Krishna, one can be fully in Krishna consciousness and thus make his life sublime and fruitful.” (bbt folio: KRSNA BOOK ch.35)

Now regarding the doubt, “Is it bonafide to read asta-kaliya-lila books like Govinda Lilamrita and Bhavanasara Sangraha”, Srila Prabhupada said, “Devotees can remain absorbed in Krishna thought by reading such books as Sri Visvanatha Cakravartipada’s “Krishna Bhavanamrita”, which is full with Krishna’s pastimes. (bbt folio: KRSNA BOOK 46)

Some devotees will respond to these quotes by preaching here and there, “Ok, that’s fine. But only very advanced pure devotees are qualified to read such books. We are just neophytes full of anarthas. So we should just read Bhagavad-gita and chant Hare Krishna.”

But what about the instructions of Srila Prabhupada? What about the teachings in his books? And what about the fact that Radha-Krishna’s immaculately pure and transcendental intimate pastimes have such power and mercy that Shukdev Goswami says (Srimad Bhagavatam 10.33.39) that even gross materialists, non-devotees, will attain para bhakti i.e. the supreme form of Krishna bhakti by hearing Radha-Krishna’s Rasa Lila?

vikriditam -vraja-vadhubhir -idam -ca -visnoh
sraddanvito -nusrnuyad -atha -varnayed -yah
bhaktim -param -bhagavati -pratilabhya -kamam
hrd-rogam -asv -apahinoty -acirena -dhirah

“Anyone who faithfully hears or describes Sri Krishna’s playful affairs with the young gopis of Vraja will attain para bhakti, the highest form of pure Krishna devotion i.e. Vraja madhurya rasa; quickly destroy lust, the disease of the heart, and immediately become steady, pure and saintly.” (Srimad Bhagavatam 10.33.39)

Srila Prabhupada: “If one hears Krishna’s pastimes with the gopis, which seem to be lusty affairs, the lusty desires in his heart, which constitute the heart disease of the conditioned soul, will be vanquished, and he will become a most exalted devotee of Krishna.” (Srimad Bhagavatam 7.1.30)

Now please consider this. What follows is a most astonishing instruction wherein Srila Prabhupada gives the SECRET OF SUCCESS in spiritual life.

In 1968, Srila Prabhupada sent the following letter to a former “hippie” turned disciple who was deeply involved with all the illicit acts so popular in America in the 1960-1970’s.

In this letter, which basically is a teaching or instruction for every devotee in Kali-yuga, Srila Prabhupada not only agrees with the Bhagavat siddhanta cited above, but he is practically endorsing the practice of reading about Radha Krishna’s transcendental romantic affairs as the “SECRET OF SUCCESS IN SPIRITUAL LIFE”!

Srila Prabhupada said, “Another secret of success is that when one is very much sexually disturbed he should THINK of Lord KRISHNA’S PASTIMES WITH THE GOPIS, and he WILL FORGET his SEX URGE. To think of Krishna’s pastimes with Gopis, but not to try to imitate.” (bbt folio: SPLetter 8Nov1968)

Sri Sri Radha Krishna Rasa Lila ki jai! Jai Sri Radhe!

Jai Srila Prabhupada!

The conclusion is that it’s perfectly all right and recommended to mix japa chanting with lila smaran, and thereby quickly become love-filled, pure and eligible to relish Krishna’s Vraja madhurya.

What follows is a summary of Radha-Govinda Yugala’s asta-kaliya-lila for devotees who want a sprinkling of asta-kaliya-lila in their nama japa, but don’t have the time to patiently hear and read the wonderful lila books of our acharyas like Govinda Lilamrita.

  1. Late Night Pastimes (nishant-lila 336-6 am)

Fearing the imminent sunrise, Vrndadevi orders some parrots to sing sweetly to awaken Radha-Madhava. A refreshing, flower-scented wind wafts through the kunja. With charming calls, the cuckoos, parrots, peahens and peacocks praise Priya-Priyatama’s pastimes.

The birds sing, “O Vrajaraja-nandana! O Nikunjeshvari! We want to see You, so please arise!” Although Lila Yugala awaken from the sweet chirping, They tightly embrace again and fall asleep, weary from amorous play. The more Vrndadevi tries to waken Radha-Madhava, the more They drowsily pretend to sleep because They don’t want to separate. As a last resort, Radha’s old pet she-monkey Kakkhati cries out, “Jatila! Jatila!”.

Everyone jumps up in fear of Radha’s mother-in-law, Jatila, and scrambles out of the kunja. The sakhi/manjaris then enter the kunja to redress Radha-Madhava and conceal the signs of Their loving intimacies. Yugala Bihari joke each other as Lalita-sakhi performs mangal arati. Then Krishna, Radha and the gopis run to Their respective homes. Nishant lila is also called kunja-bhanga lila.

  1. Sunrise Pastimes (pratah-lila 6-836)

Radha-Krishna lie in their beds in Nandagrama and Yavata. Seeing Radhika burning in the fire of Shyam’s separation, Sri Rupa and Tulasi manjari comfort Her and sustain Radha’s life. Yashoda and Paurnamasi rouse Krishna, and Jatila and Mukhara, Radha’s Nanny, rouse Radha from Her slumber.

The friendly sakhi Shyamala comes to cheer up Radha with sweet memories of Her times with Shyam. The sakhi/manjaris then bathe, dress and ornament Srimati so beautifully that Radha wants to immediately run to Krishna to please His admiring eyes.

Radhika and Her sakhi entourage then travel to Nandagram to cook Krishna’s breakfast. Kishori cooks and supervises 100 different stoves in preparing a variety of tasty, nourishing dishes for Krishna. Naughty Madhava accosts Swamini on the path and many hilarious pastimes ensue.

When Yashoda Ma stirs Shyam and sees scratches on His chest she sadly says, “Lala’s body is softer than lotus petals. So why have the pesky gopas hurt my tender boy by wrestling frivolously? Ha Hanta! Hanta! What can I do to stop this?”

Out of love for His mother, Krishna quickly jumps out of bed and runs to the goshala to milk the cows. Then Krishna, enjoys a wonderful joking breakfast with Madhumangala and the boys, and goes out for go-charana lila. Sri Radha and Her confidential sakhis take Krishna’s madhura prasadi and return to Yavata.

  1. Morning Pastimes (purvahna-lila 836-1048)

Sri Krishna and the gopas take the cows to the forest to pasture and play together. Nanda Baba, Yashoda Ma and other Vrajavasis follow Krishna and repeatedly say good bye, fearing even a moment’s separation from their most beloved Nandulal.

Using a clever excuse, Krishna, restless and eager to meet Radha, slips away from the sakhas at Manasi Ganga and rushes off to Radha-kunda with Subala and Madhumangala. Radha waits in Yavata for a sakhi to bring news of Krishna before going out to Surya Kunda for Surya puja.

  1. Midday Pastimes (madhyahna-lila 1048-1536)

For six hours in the day and night, Radha-Krishna enjoy a continuous variety of pastimes together full of blissful intimacies. They wander, joke, sing, laugh, swing, swim, picnic, gamble, drink, steal, worship, and dive deeply in the fathomless ocean of Their ecstatic love sports.

  1. Late Afternoon Pastimes (apurvahna-lila 1536-1800)

After Surya puja, Radhika goes home, bathes, dresses and cooks five special sweets for Krishna on Yashoda’s request. Sriji steals a sweet and joyful glimpse of Shyam as He passes through Her village with His cows and boys returning to Nandagram.

Krishna lovingly greets Nanda and Yashoda, who cleanses the dust from His face with the end of her sari before performing Krishna’s arati. Then Yashoda Ma breast-feeds Lala and sends Him off to milk His beloved cows.

  1. Evening Pastimes (shayan-lila 1800-2024)

Yashoda then attentively bathes Krishna, dresses Him in beautiful clothes, and fondles Krishna in the many ways mothers do. Krishna milks the cows, and Yashoda lovingly feeds Him the sweets sent by Radha.

The sakhi/manjaris witness these lilas and immediately bring Krishna’s food remnants and the good news to Radha’s eager ears. Then Sri Radha enjoys Krishna’s nectar-lips prasadi along with Her confidential sakhis.

  1. Evening Pastimes (pradosh-lila 2024-2248)

Radharani sends more cooked foods to Nandagram. Yashoda affectionately greets Radhika’s maidservants and then serves Radha’s delicacies to Kanai Balai, and other family members. Krishna enjoys an evening of entertainment in the palace theatre featuring recitals, music, dramas, gymnastic feats and magic shows.

Yashoda Ma sings a lullaby as Krishna pretends to fall asleep. Then Shyam secretly slips away from the palace, and runs into the dark forest to meet His sweetheart Srimati Radharani.

Yashoda gives Krishna’s prasadi to the manjaris who take it to Sri Radha and inform Her of the evening’s meeting place. Radha’s kinkaris tell Her all about Krishna relishing Her preparations, and then prepare Radha for abhisara, love journey to Krishna in the kunja.

  1. Midnight Pastimes (ratri-lila 2248-336)

The love anxious, Playful Pair Radha-Madhava finally meet under the soothing moon of night. Their dearest sakhi/manjaris worship and expertly serve Them in many tasteful ways. Krishna and all the gopis sport the night away with forest rambling, singing, rasa dancing, Yamuna bathing, forest snacking, honey-nectar drinking, resting and enjoying confidentially.

Radha’s loyal and dedicated kinkari maidservants serve Radha-Madhava by fanning, offering flavourful betel tambula, massaging Their feet and so on. Finally, Rasika Yugal drift off to sleep, and enjoy tender hugs and kisses in Their svapna-vilasa -amritam.

Jai Jai Sri Radhe Shyam! Radha-Krishna asta-kaliya-lila ki jai!

In closing, we offer you Sri Jiva Goswami’s beautiful prayer “Yugalashtakam”, crying out to the wonderfully kind and merciful eternal Loving Pair, Sri Sri Radha and Krishna.

1) Radha is made of Krishna prema and Hari is made of Radha prema. In life or death, Radha-Krishna are my one and only eternal shelter!

2) Radha is Krishna’s treasure and Hari is Radha’s treasure. In life or death, Radha-Krishna are my one and only eternal shelter!

3) Radha pervades Krishna’s prana, and Hari pervades Priya’s prana. In life or death, Radha-Krishna are my one and only eternal shelter!

4) Radha is completely melted into Krishna, and Hari is completely melted into Radha. In life or death, Radha-Krishna are my one and only eternal shelter!

5) Radha is permanently within Krishna’s body, and Hari is permanently within Hari’s body. In life or death, Radha-Krishna are my one and only eternal shelter!

6) Radha is permanently fixed in Krishna’s heart and Hari is fixed in Hers. In life or death, Radha-Krishna are my one and only eternal shelter!

7) Radha wears Shyam blue clothing, and Hari dons Radha golden clothes. In life or death, Radha-Krishna are my one and only eternal shelter!

8) Radha is Vrndavaneshvari and Hari is Vrndavaneshvara. In life or death, Radha-Krishna are my one and only eternal shelter!

Jai Jai Radhe! Jai Jai Shyam! Jai Jai Sri Vrndavana Dham!

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

After becoming established in one’s siddha svarupa by the mercy of Sri Guru and Sri Krishna, a sadhaka will contemplate his/her personal form, qualities and seva while mentally remembering and serving within Radha-Madhava’s asta-kaliya-lila.

The young girls (12-13 yrs) who personally and very intimately serve Srimati Radharani are called Radha’s dasis, kinkaris, manjaris or simply maidservants. The following description is generic and refers to “You” or anyone among the unlimited handmaidens of Srimati Radhika.

The following passages, taken from Prabodhananda Sarasvatipada’s Vrindavana Mahimamrita, which describe a manjari’s form, feelings, movements and services are very helpful in deepening and culturing the persona of a maidservant of Srimati Radharani.

By reading these, one will see how dynamic, beautiful and exciting it will be when one attains prema, and enters Radha-Krishna pastimes to lovingly serve Them eternally in one’s siddha svarupa as Radhika’s kinkari.

To attain success in manjari meditation, one must completely forget once and for all one’s external body and all false material attachments. By the mercy of Sri Hari and Sri Guru, I have received a spiritual form, siddha svarupa/deha so that I may affectionately and intimately serve Sri Sri Radha-Govinda Yugala in the eternally blissful realm of Sri Vraja Dhama.

Thus to permanently fix my eternal and REAL spiritual identity, I will deeply concentrate, meditate upon and internally visualize my true self as follows. Hear/read the passages very attentively while thinking: “This is the REAL ME—the ETERNAL ME—the EVER BLISSFUL ME!” Try to think of your eternal, individual, transcendental, sac-cid-ananda siddha svarupa as being like this…

“I am a lovely kinkari maidservant of Ishvari Radha, and I have a glistening, pleasing golden complexion and I abound in honey sweetness. I am a fresh maiden adorned with jeweled necklaces and a multicolored blouse.

My arms are beautifully shaped like lotus stems and glorified with bracelets and jeweled armlets. Like a dangling vine, my hair shiny black braid hangs down to My captivating buttocks, and its swinging movements enhance My beauty.

As Radhika’s kinkari (manjari), I have an enchantingly thin waist. A divine silk garment with artistic folds hangs down to My ankles. A fine cloth embroidered with flowers and leaves covers My hair and the sides of My face.

A sweet shy smile plays upon My reddish lips. My glances are light and playful, and My movements are extremely attractive. The amorous affairs of Radha-Madhava Yugala always excite My pure tender heart.

Among my unlimited good qualities, humility and sweet behavior are foremost. Having been personally taught by Radharani, I am now expert in all arts.

I appear especially attractive due to wearing the Playful Pair’s prasadi malas, clothes and ornaments. I regularly relish Radha and Krishna’s astonishingly tasty prasadi pan and betel nut. Being an expert manjari, I immediately know what Radha wants just by a hint or a glance. Radha and Krishna are always very affectionate to me.

I carry whatever is needed for seva i.e. scents, water, garlands, kunkum, pan, cosmetics etc. for Radhe-Shyama’s nightly meetings. As a Radhika kinkari, I constantly taste the sweet madhura rasa arising from Sri Radha’s beautiful form, qualities and pastimes. I remain forever thrilled by remembering Radhika’s intimate affairs with Shyama.

Because I have intense loving affection for Radharani, I am always submerged in an ocean of happiness. In all times, whether I am awake, dreaming or deeply asleep, I desire nothing but Radha’s seva. I know absolutely nothing but Sri Radha sweet lotus feet.

As rivers rush to the sea, I immediately run toward anything even remotely connected with Radha. And I practically die if even a moment passes without Radha. As a shadow follows an object, I am always beside Sri Radha throughout the day and night. My deep attachment to Radha immerses me in the boundless ocean of ecstatic love for Radha.

Sometimes when Kunjeshvari enjoys with Priyatama in a keli-kunja, Radha pulls me onto the flower bed and under the sheets with Her. Ah ha! Just see the intimacy that Srimati showers upon me, Her most fortunate maidservant!

Tasting the bliss of serving Kishori Jeu, I thrill and tremble in ecstasy. My brilliant bodily luster and loveliness enchant everyone as I run from place to place in My anxiety to nicely serve Priya Sundari.

My soothing bodily effulgence beautifies and enriches all ten directions. When I sometimes hear Priya-Priyatama’s secret love talks, I experience inconceivable joy, the utmost happiness and FULL satisfaction. The soothing, nectar-sweet words flowing from the lovely lotus mouth of Srimati Radhika continually dance in waves of joy in My heart. (Vrindavana Mahimamrta 8.17-42)

Sri Radha’s manjari ki jai! Jaya Jaya Sri Radhe! Manjari Bhava Upasana ki jai! Manjari Sadhana ki jai! Sri Guru ki jai!

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

1) Early Morning Pastimes (03:36-06:00)

In the forest of Vrndavana, Vrnda-devi engages peacocks, parrots, cuckoos, and doves to sing, and finally the old monkey “Kakkhati” to speak to awaken Radha and Krsna. The Divine Couple leave Their flower cottage and hastily and secretly return to Their homes in Javat and Nandagrama.

2) Morning Pastimes (06:00-08:24)

Radharani in Javat and Krsna in Nandagrama are awakened by Their superiors who are completely unaware of the preceding night’s events. Krsna greets His cowherd friends and goes to the cowshed to milk the cows. Meanwhile, Radha, splendidly bathed and dressed, proceeds with Her gopi friends to Nandagrama to cook Krsna’s breakfast. After milking the cows and joking with His friend, Krsna bathes, dresses and enjoys breakfast while surrounded by Sri Baladeva and His boyfriends, Madhumangala, Subala and Sridama.

3) Forenoon Pastimes (08:24-10:48)

Sri Govinda and His boyfriends take the cows out to eat the soft, sweet grass at the bottom of Govardhana Hill. The boys frolic in the forests, bathe happily in Manasi Ganga and enjoy eating tasty snacks of fruits and sweets. Missing Sri Radha, Krsna tricks the boys and slips away to nearby Kusuma Sarovara. Here, Krsna meets with Subala, Madhumangala, Dhanistha-sakhi, Vrnda-devi and Tulasi to arrange for His impending rendezvous with His beloved Radhika.

4) Midday Pastimes (10:48-15:36)

Radha and Krsna meet and enjoy unlimited nectarean pastimes in Radha-kunda, and in the surrounding forest grove’s belonging to Radha’s dearest friends. Radha and Krsna dispute over flower picking, They ride on a lotus swing, stroll through the six seasonal forests, engage in color squirting wars, water splashing contests, flute stealing, decorating one another with flowers, drinking honey nectars and eating forests fruits, playing board games, resting on flower petal beds, hearing parrots sing Their glories and Surya-puja.

5) Afternoon Pastimes (15:36-18:00)

Sri Radha returns home to Javat, bathes, dresses gorgeously, and begins cooking delicious sweets to send for Krsna’s evening repast. Playing His flute, Sri Krsna calls the cows by name and leads them home to Nandagrama. Yasoda and Rohini organize the kitchen to produce many sumptuous offerings for Krsna’s pleasure.

6) Dusk Pastimes (18:00-20:24)

Krsna and Balarama bathe, dress and relish the sweet snacks sent by Srimati Sundari (Radha). Krsna then milks the cows, or alternately goes to the Yamuna to sport with Radha. After Nanda Maha¬raja’s sandhya-arati Krsna and all His boyfriends eat supper in a joking, festive mood. Yasoda sends Krsna’s remnants to Radha who eagerly honors them.

7) Evening Pastimes (20:24-22:48)

In Nanda Maharaja’s palace auditorium, Krsna is entertained with dramas, dancing, recitations, instrumental music, Vedic mantra chanting, and a magic show.

Afterwards, Mother Yasoda feeds warm milk to Krsna and sends Him to bed. Meanwhile in Javat, Radharani is dressed in beautiful clothes with colors coordinated to the moon’s phases—wearing white garments during the light moon and blue cloth during the dark moon. Accompanied by Her intimate gopi friends, Sri Radha travels to the assigned kunja (forest grove) on the bank of the Yamuna for Her rendezvous with Syamasundara. Krsna feigns sleep, assigns a couple of boyfriends to guard, locks His door from inside, and secretly slips away to meet Radha.

8) Midnight Pastimes (22:48-03:36)

Singing responsive songs, Srimati Radhika, Sri Krsna and the gopis wander throughout the Vrndavana forest along the Yamuna River. The amazing rasa dance begins with thousands of gopis beside thousands of Krsnas, all whirling and spinning gracefully in indescribably wonderful circular patterns.

Vrnda-devi distributes musical instruments, and hundreds of gopis begin playing complex rhythms on vinas, mrdangas, flutes, finger cymbals, stringed and wind instruments. All the musical instruments blend sweetly together. The tempo gets faster and faster. The tunes become more and more complex. And the dancing becomes more and more frantic, as the gopis sing thousands of varieties of songs. Krsna admires the melodious compositions of all the talented gopis.

Srimati Radharani brings the topmost happiness to Sri Krsna by enacting a special dance that no one else could possibly imitate. After the exhilarating rasa dance Radha, Krsna and the gopis refresh Themselves with inebriating fruit and honey nectar drinks. Then They relax upon luxurious natural beds made from flower petals and lotus stems.

To further mitigate Their transcendental fatigue and to enjoy more pastimes, Radha, Krsna and the gopis dip in the Yamuna for a sportive water fight. Vrnda-devi provides fresh cloth and decorations for Sri Radha and Sri Krsna. She then brings the Divine Couple to Their resting temple, where The enjoy some fresh forest fruits before retiring for pleasure pastimes.

(An excerpt from Appreciating Sri Vrndavana Dhama by Mahanidhi Swami)

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

Sri Vilapa Kusumanjali by Sri Raghunatha Dasa Goswamipada is the best bhajana guidebook for raganuga sadhakas pursing manjari bhava. However, this is not really a book.

Rather here in a tangible and approachable form one discovers an ocean of loving outpourings for humble seva from the anguished heart of Srimati Radhika’s manjari maidservant crying in separation:

“Ha Radhe! Ha Radhe! Where are You now? I beg to see You and serve Your lotus feet in every possible way. Ha Radhe! Where are You?”

Each and every verse of Vilapa Kusumanjali is like a fragrant flower (kusuma) sprinkled with the pollen of lamentation (vilapa), and offered with the hands (anjali) of a heart hankering for Srimati’s eternal service.

Sadhakas aware of their siddha-svarupas or spiritual forms should regularly read these verses while deeply meditating on the pastimes described therein; the services being offered; and the moods and feelings being exchanged between Priya Sundari and Her loving maidservant.

With a purified mind and a sensitive, service-oriented heart, a sadhaka can identify with Sri Dasa Goswami in his manjari form as Tulasi-manjari and the sweet confidential sevas she’s doing for Radharani’s pleasure.

With the mercy of Sri Guru, Sri Harinama, and sweet foot dust of Sri Raghunatha Dasa Goswamipada, one will gradually see these seva lilas in the mind, and render the same sevas too in one’s individual siddha-svarupa.

To facilitate the sadhana of manjari bhava upasakas, Sri Vilapa Kusumanjali is herein presented. Manjari bhava upasana ki jai! Guru krpa hi kevalam ki jai! Jaya Jaya Sri Radhe!

Sri Vilapa Kusumanjali

Sri Raghunatha Dasa Goswami

1 My dear friend Rūpa Mañjari! In the town of Vraja, you are well known for your chastity. You don’t even look at the faces of other men! It is surprising therefore that your lips, that are as beautiful as red Bimba-fruits, have been bitten although your husband is not at home. Perhaps this has been done by the best of parrots?

2 O Sthalakamalini (land-lotus)! It is fitting that you are laughing very proudly through your flower bunches, since the black bee Krishna has left all the fragrant flowers in the forest to search only for you!

O Rati Mañjari! You are the most fortunate cowherd girl in the abode of the king of Vraja! When your mistress Śrī Rādhikā forgets Her beloved sash of bells due to absorption in Her love play, She asks You to fetch it from the cave where She left it!

4 I take shelter of my teacher Yadunandana Ācārya, who is so powerful because he is so dear to Yadunandana Śrī Krishna, and who personally showered me with the nectar of his matchless mercy.

5 I worship Sri Chaitanyachandra, who with the ropes of His mercy suddenly pulled me out of the deep, inescapable, waterless well of household life, which is full of limitless suffering, and gave me shelter at the tips of His feet, that defeat the beauty of lotus flowers, and entrusted me into the care of Śrī Svarūpa Dāmodara.

6 I take shelter of my lord Sanātana Gosvāmī, who was an ocean of compassion and who always felt sorry for the suffering of others. Although I was blinded by ignorance and unwilling to, he diligently made me drink the nectar of devotion laced with renunciation.

7 O Svāmini Radhe! The heart of this maidservant constantly burns in a great fire of separation from You. Being thus afflicted and crying with great love, I lament in the following verses!

8 O Devi Radhe! I’m helpless and afflicted in the middle of an ocean of sorrow! Please take me to the wonderful abode of Your lotus feet in the powerful boat of Your mercy!

9 O Devi! This person has died from the bites of the black snake of separation from You. Please revive me with the medicinal lac that anoints Your lotus feet!

10 O Devi, I am a maidservant of Your lotus-like feet, but my vine-like body burn is burning in the forest fire of separation from You. Please revive me at once with Your nectarean glances!

11 O Sumukhi! When will I, even in a dream, be justified in calling my head the highest limb (uttamāṅga) of my body by beautifying it with the glistening fragrant pollen of Your lotus feet?

12 O Kalyāṇi! When will the jingling of Your anklebells, that resembles an ocean of nectarean rasa, cure my deafness?

13 O Devi! When You go out to meet Krishna in the moonlit night Your eyes fearfully move in all directions, like bumblebees turning the whole forest into blue lotus petal-interiors. Is this person not to be seen by these eyes?

14 O Vrindavaneshvari! Ever since some mañjarī named Rūpa filled my eyes with light in Vrajabhūmi, I have strongly desired to see the red lac on Your lotus feet!

15 O blooming lotus-eyed girl (Rādhe)! When my eyes directly saw Your pond, Rādhākuṇḍa, which is filled with sweet water and lotus flowers surrounded by blissfully humming bees, then I really got the desire to taste the nectar of Your service!

16 O Devi! I shall never pray to You for anything else but the excellent service of Your lotus feet! I offer my constant obeisances to the idea of becoming Your friend, but I really relish the idea of becoming Your maidservant!

17 O You whose golden hue possesses the pride of the color of a turmeric-bulb scratched by a fingernail! When will You, having, out of great satisfaction, marked my arms with Your emblems of good fortune that are anointed with Your very lovely footlac, bestow the service of Your lotus feet on me?

18 O Devi! When may I daily make Your latrine, which is very dear to me, fragrant with nice incense after I joyfully rinse Your drain with sweetly scented water and lovingly sweep it with my loosened hair?

19 O Bhāvini Radhe! When can I diligently bring camphorated clay and a jug of scented water into Your room, wash Your lotus like feet in a basin and dry them with my hair?

20 After washing Your lotus feet and brushing Your teeth with a twig, when may this maidservant seat You in the bathroom and massage You after anointing You with very fragrant oils?

21 O You whose lotus like face defeats the beauty of the moon! When may I expertly bathe You with jugs of pure water scented with camphor and flowers, brought in advance by a sakhi who is beautified by her love for You?

22 O Śaśimukhi! After Your bath, may I gently and carefully wipe the water from Your tender limbs with fine towels as the borders of Your fish-like eyes joyfully move in all directions. After covering Your hips with a red silken petticoat, my body will erupt with thrill bumps of joy. Then may I cover Your entire body from Your head down with an incomparably beautiful blue sari?

23 O Radhe, beloved of the Prince of Vraja! When will this person, after washing Your lotus feet, lovingly braid Your hair with the beautiful fine garlands made by the florist girl Narmada?

24 O Devi, may I then joyfully make a full moon-like tilaka on Your forehead, anoint Your body with fine glistening vermilion and make pictures on Your breasts with perfumes?

25 O Devi! When will I beautify Your tresses by making a stripe of sindūra on Your hair part with a jeweled pencil?

26 O Devi! With a steady hand when can I make red fragrant spots all around Your tilaka that is the best enchanting herb for Krishna?

27 O Varoru! Your excellent earrings are like ropes that the flower archer Cupid has placed to bind the elephant king-like heart of the Prince of Vraja! When can I happily hang these ornaments on Your ears?

28 O Sundari! I did not desire that Śyāma would not see Your breasts when I placed this kañculī (bodice) on them. Actually, O Swamini, I wanted Shyama Himself to become Your blouse by suddenly coming and firmly embracing Your jewellike breasts that are more dear than His very life.

29 O Hemagauri! When You tire of lovemaking You lie down on the pillow of Mukunda’s chest, which is as soft as cotton. When can this maidservant decorate Your nice chest with a charming necklace of gems and big pearls?

30 O Indīvarakṣi! Will I ever get the chance to ornament You with blue bangles inset with jewels? When will I adorn Your hands, that are expert in all arts and very dear to Śrī Hari, with beautiful glistening rings?

31 O Sunetre! When will I worship Your lotus feet by carefully putting jeweled ankle bells on them, and worship the petals of those lotuses with Your dearest toe rings? When will I worship Your waist, Krishna’s matchless loveseat, with a golden sash of jingling bells

32 When can I humbly and joyfully decorate Your arms, that are like very lovely lotus stems that expertly destroy the patience in the swan-like intelligence of Murajayi Krishna, with gem studded armlets or render any other service to You?

33 O Subhage! When will that day come when I worship Your neck, which attained all good fortune from the touch of Gokulachandra during the Rasa Utsava, with a Graiveya-ornament?

34 O Sumukhi! After Krishna killed the proud Śaṅkhacūḍa-demon, He gave the Syamantaka jewel removed from that demon to His brother Balarāma (the enemy of Pralambāsura). With a happy heart Balarāma gave it to Madhumaṅgala who in turn gave it to You. When can I hang this Syamantaka jewel, the friend of Krishna’s Kaustubha-gem, in a locket around Your neck?

35 O Kṛśodari! Your waist is so thin that I’m very much afraid it will break when I bind it with a golden string with tassels at both ends!

36 O Hemagauri (golden girl)! When will I fasten a round nose pearl attached to a golden string on Your nose that defeats the beauty of a sesame flower? The great bee Madhumathana Krishna will be very agitated by the honey suddenly appearing there.

37 O Svarṇagauri! When on Your order will I tie the nava-ratna armlet on Your left arm with a string beautified by a silken tassel?

38 O Cañcalākṣi! Although Muraśatru Krishna agitates all the gopīs, I make Krishna spin like a disc with the chakra-shaped hairpins that I place above Your ears!

39 O Mṛga Śāvākṣi! When can I beautify Your chin that is the abode of Mukunda’s bliss with a drop of musk?

40 O Devi! When will I decorate Your teeth with reddish lines, making them look just like pearls with lines of ruby on them?

41 O Gāṅgeya Gātri! When will I color Your excellent Bimba fruit reddish, nectarlike lips with lipstick of catechu mixed with fresh camphor? Will the Krishna parrot suddenly come then and forcibly bite them?

42 With just a blink from the corners of Your eyes You immediately tightly tie down the king of elephants Krishna. When will I worship Your two eyes that defeat the fickleness of the wagtail bird with eyeliner?

43 Just to soothe Your proud love sulk, the Prince of Vraja holds Your feet on His head to enhance its beauty with the mark of Your footlac! When will I make Your feet most splendid with this nectarean footlac?

44 O Devi, when Muradvisha Krishna touches Your lowered shoulders in the Rāsa dance, He looks like a full moon (Kalānidhi) shining with an abundance of lust. O Kalāvati (artistic girl)! When will this maidservant joyfully place a garland of sweet jasmine flowers, surrounded by wandering humming bees, on Your shoulders?

45 O Mugdhāṅgi! O Sumukhi! When will this maidservant sit next to You, who are surrounded by Your sakhis, and lovingly hand You the paraphernalia to offer formal oblations to the Sungod sitting on an altar made of sunstones?

46 O Varoru! After You very carefully cook a variety of sweets for Madhumathana on the order of the Queen Yaśodā, You hand them to Your girlfriends like me [to bring them to Krishna].

47 O Bhavye! Seeing me bringing Your sweets and knowing me to be Yours, when will the Queen of Vraja hold her forehead on my forehead in loving joy as if she is my mother and inquire about Your wellbeing?

48 O Devi! When will I most affectionately bring and present to You the remnants of Krishna’s lotus like mouth given to me by Dhanishtha.

49 O Kuṅkumāṅgi! When will I carefully serve You the many remnants left by Krishna, that are like an elixir of the quintessence of nectar, mixed with other eatables and drinks, as You sit down, surrounded by Lalitā and other girlfriends?

50 O Taralākṣi! When will the time come when I can offer You sweet drinking water scented with fresh roses and camphor for flushing Your mouth, along with a twig for brushing Your teeth?

51 O Devi! While You are eating, when can I lovingly and attentively fan You, light lots of nicely fragrant incense, or serve You in other appropriate ways at that time?

52 O Madhura Gātri! When will my hair stand erect in ecstasy when I place a betel-leaf packed with camphor, catechu, cloves and guvak into Your lotus like mouth?

53 O Devi! While Lalitā joyfully offers arati to You, and the other sakhīs worship You with auspicious songs and fresh flowers, when can this maidservant, to whom You are dearer than billions of lives, worship You with her hair?

54 O Devi! While You are absorbed in an intimate joking discussion with Your girlfriends, headed by Lalitā, I will make a beautiful play bed for You with my own hands. When will You decorate that bed by dreaming on it?

55 O Manojña Hṛdaye! O Sadaye! When will that beautiful, blessed day come when this maidservant of Yours will massage Your feet as Śrī Rūpa Mañjarī takes care of Your hands?

56 O Sumukhi! When will I, like a vine of devotion, on the strength of great arising fortune, obtain the remnants of food that You spat out along with Your gargling water and the water that has washed Your lotus like feet? With love I shall enjoy it in so many ways along with Your other loving friends!

57 O Devi! When will You, while You are eating, affectionately give me, whose heart is dedicated to You, the nectarean remnants from Your lotus like mouth?

58 O Svāmini! Can I ever obtain Your darshana as You walk to Nandishvara to cook for Mādhava Sri Krishna, with Your gait faltering and Your hair standing on end out of joy?

59 Rūpa Mañjarī will lead You on the path, Lalitā and Viśākhā will be at Your sides, Your friends will be all around You, and I will walk behind You holding Your gracefully slender waist.

60 When You arrive in Nandīśvara, the great abode of Vrajaraja Nanda, which is filled with the bellowing of cows, the shouts of the cowherders and the different songs of the artists and panegyrists, and which shines with love, being dearer to Krishna, the Prince of Vraja, than even Govardhana.

61 Surrounded by Your loving friends, You will arrive in Nandishvara. When will I then see Dhanishtha, after seeing You coming from afar, quickly and lovingly bring You inside the palace right in front of me?

62 O Kuśale! You are an expert cook! After I wash Your lotus like feet, You enter into the kitchen and offer obeisances to the queen of Vraja and other superiors. When will You drown me in an ocean of bliss by doing this?

63 O Devi, when can I see Your lowered blushing face affectionately looking at Mādhava while You collect all His food and drinks and place them in Rohiṇī’s hands?

64 O Madhure! When will You gladden me when I see Mādhava glancing at Your joyful and eager lotus face with lowered eyes as He sits in the dining room with His superiors?

65 When will Krishna, the Prince of Vraja, glance at You with His smiling face as He goes out to wander in the forest with the Surabhī cows in whose care He was initiated, being cuddled by His worried mother?

66 O Hrīmati Sumukhi! When will my heart feel great joy when I see the Queen of Vraja, who is more affectionate than billions of mothers, taking eager oaths to make You sit down to eat with Your friends?

67 O Khañjanākṣi! When will I feel a great festival of joy in my heart when I see You being cuddled by the Queen of Vraja, who embraces You, kisses Your head and lovingly stares at You as if You are Her newly married daughter-in-law?

68 O my dear friend Rūpa Mañjari! When can I walk behind you when you lovingly take wide-eyed goddess Rādhikā, who is moved by waves of desire, to the play grove that is decorated by Śrī Hari, as She holds Her vine-like arm with yours?

69 My dear friend Rūpa Mañjari! When will I be able to see you with my mistress decorating Her dearest One with flower-ornaments in the grove-cottage on the bank of Radha-kunda?

70 O Subhage! Can I joyfully decorate You with fine garments, floral earrings, necklaces and so after hearing from the parrot Vicakṣaṇa that the prince of Vraja has gone out for His excellent noontime meeting with You?

71 O Śaśimukhi! O Devi! When will I make a bed of jasmine-flowers for You in the cottage in Madanānandada-kuñja (Visakha’s grove which gives joy to Cupid) which has beautiful gates and erotic vermilion pictures hanging in it, hung with garlands made of various flowers surrounded by humming bees?

72 O Kanaka Gauri (golden girl)! Can I carefully and happily massage Your lotus feet while Śrī Rūpa Mañjarī massages the lotus feet of Krishna, the Prince of Vraja, on whose arm You have placed Your head?

73 Madhusūdana is the crest jewel of clever pranksters! One day He obstructs Your path on the pretext of collecting tax from You as You are walking near Govardhana Hill! Will I then see Your proud eyes crowned with frowned eyebrows?

74 O Madhura-mukhi! When the wind carries Your excellent bodily fragrance to Candrāvalī’s handmade play bed where Mukunda enjoys with her, Krishna finds a clever excuse to meet You on the shore of Radha-kunda, like a bumblebee leaving an inferior flower. When will I proudly witness this?

75 O Śaśimukhi! When will we witness Your ever-fresh water sports with Pranapati Shyama and Your friends all together in Your own sweet lake, which is filled with many lotus flowers and surrounded by singing birds and humming bees?

76 O Varoru! When will the ocean of my bliss expand when I see You being decorated with flowers by joyful Arishtajayi Krishna in a grove with many blooming flowers and bees on the beautiful bank of Your lake?

77 Will the joy of my eyes increase when I see one maiden swiftly and happily bringing various blooming flowers, big guñjā-beads and peacock feathers? While Hari places these things in Svamini’s hair braid, He shivers and Radha’s whole body blooms up with tiny bumps of bliss!

78 O Sumukhi! When will I secretly smile when I see You proudly and excitedly beating Mādhava with Your play lotus during Your love sports?

79 O Subhaga Mukhi! When will You give me great joy by singing sweet love songs with the Prince of Vraja as You embrace Him with Your very graceful arms, and Shyama holds His strong arm on Your low shoulders?

80 O Devi, when You defeat Hari in a dice game You snatch away His flute. When will You throw it to me, so that I can hide it somewhere?

81 O Sumukhi)! When will I have thrill bumps of ecstasy all over my body as I fan You in a temple that gives bliss to Cupid, where You enjoy ever-so-sweet talks with Your lover, Your cheeks blossoming with a smile as You lie on a play bed made of Mālatī flowers?

82 O Rādhe with a face like a fully blooming lotus flower! When You go out to meet Krishna at night Your swiftly moving feet become afflicted with fatigue. O Devi! When will You, although You are shyness personified, call me by name to massage Your lotus feet? Then I know that You have accepted me as Your own!

83 ‘O Rādhe! O Granddaughter! The time has come for Your worship of the sungod! Where are You?’ Will these angry words of Mukharā sound like nectar to me and make me happy?

84 O Devi! Can I serve Your nectarean words with My ears and Your camphor-scented smile with My eyes?

85 O Suvrate! Will you increase my bliss by falsely and angrily quarreling with Your Prananatha, being supported by Your girlfriends, who are expert in helping You in Your loving tricks while You play the flower picking game?

86 O Sadaye! When will this maiden, whom Mādhava knows to be very dear to You and piteously petitioned in so many unbearable ways, anxiously fall at Lalitā’s feet to plead for Him that You give up Your maan?

87 O Dhīre! When will I see Your great ceremonial bathing as You are crowned the queen of Vṛndāvana by Paurṇamāsī’s personal arrangement? While You are being bathed with many jugs of pure fragrant water, there will be a grand festival of love with dancing, singing of auspicious songs and playing of vīṇās and other instruments!

88 O Mañju-vadane! On the full moon day of Śrāvana (August) named Rakṣa Pūrṇimā, Your brother Śrīdāma comes to Yāvata with ten thousand cows to satisfy the greedy Jaṭilā before affectionately taking You along to Varṣānā, where Your parents lovingly cuddle You in front of me as You melt with weeping from happiness and sorrow.

89 O Sadaye! When will You shyly take me far away from Your girlfriends to a cave of Govardhana Hill to teach me beautiful songs in different tunes?

90 O Devi, when will I shyly lower my head in the assembly as You are requested by Lalitā-devī to lovingly read some beautiful romantic poetry to me?

91 O Devi! When will You teach me how to play the Kacchapī vina in a grove that is filled with humming bees, on the shore of Your lake?

92 O Devi! When will You, being shy before Your girlfriends, order me through a hint to restring Your dear necklace which broke during Your pastimes with Krishna?

93 O Devi! When will You affectionately give me the remnants of Your chewed betel from Your mouth into mine, looking all around (to see if anybody’s looking)?

94 O Śaśimukhi! During intense love-pastimes with Your Prananatha You become bewildered and forget Your dear sweet sash of bells in the kunja. When will You give me a wink to go quickly back and fetch it?

95 O Devi! Although You are generally very grave, You once severely rebuked me and sent me away for committing just the tiniest mistake. When will You cast a slight glance on this pitiful person after Lalitā brings her back to You?

96 I am Yours, I am Yours! I cannot live without You! O Devi! Knowing this, please take me to Your lotus feet!

97 O Lolākṣi! Sri Radha-kunda is always the dwelling place of You and Your Beloved. Here only at Radha-kunda I will live and here alone I will stay!

98 O beautiful Radha-kunda! My Ishvari Radha always plays erotic games in you with Her beloved Krishna. If you are dearer to Them than the dearest, then please show me my Ishvari, who is my very life!

99 O fair-faced Viśākhe! My Queen will not leave your company for even a moment! Because You are of the same age as Radha, you are the realm of Her joking pastimes. Please save my life from the affliction of separation and show me my Ishvari!

100 O Natha, O Gokula-sudhakara! O You who are melting with compassion! O You whose lotus like face smiles sweetly and satisfied! Wherever You go to enjoy loving pastimes with Your beloved, please take me there, so that I can affectionately serve You there!

101 O Ishe Radhe! The goddess of fortune cannot attain even a drop of the beauty of the tips of Your lotus like toenails! If You do not bestow the gift of Your darshana, then what is the use of this life that just burns in a forest fire of sorrow?

102 O Varoru! Thus I somehow spent my time at Radha-kunda aspiring after oceans of nectar. But Radha, if You are not merciful to me, then what is the use of my life—my living in Vraja—and even Krishna to me?

103 O Kṛpāmayi Radha! If You are not kind upon this suffering girl then what was the use of all these lamentations and all my service to Your kunda for such a long time?

104 O Praṇaya-śālini Radha! Thus I am loudly crying, desiring to attain Your mature loving service! Holding Your lotus feet to my heart, which is burning out of intense agony, I’m offering these lamentations to them as a bouquet of flowers. May they be the cause of even the slightest satisfaction to You.

(adapted from translation of Sri Advaita Dasji)

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

With the right mood and desire, one can “link” one’s daily murti or Deity puja with the loving flow of Radha Govinda’s eternal daily pastimes in Gokula Vrindavana, the spiritual sky. By remembering the entries below a pujari will be able to link his/her Thakuraji seva with Krishna’s nitya lila. Basically, the pujari will transit between presence and transcendence by linking his body and mind with lila.

1) Pastimes at Night’s End (nishanta-lila) 3.36-6 am

Thakuraji (your murti, Deity) awakens much before sunrise on the pretext of inviting his pujari servants to awaken Him, which They do with the sweetest of songs and the tinkling of bells [mangala-aroti]. In Goloka, Radha-Krishna are resting in the secret bower-house after a night of exotic fun in the forest groves along with Their sakhis. When the pujari offers Thakuraji a pre-dawn snack of sweets and water [balya-bhoga], the sakhis are offering Radha-Madhava a tasty light snack as They lounge lazily upon Their flower bed. The pujari closes curtain after Thakuraji’s arati ceremony so that Radha Govinda Yugala can sneak back to Their respective homes, slide into Their beds and pretend to be sleeping right where Their parents had left them.

2) Morning pastimes (pratah-lila) 6-8.30 am

In Yavat and Nandishvara, Radha and Krishna are awakened by Their respective superiors. Radha-Krishna perform Their morning duties i.e. brush Their teeth, massage, bathe and dress. Then the Playful Pair are greeted by Their eternal associates, who make much celebration of the morning darsana. Similarly, during this time the pujari will bathe, dress, and feed Thakuraji who will then be greeted by the assembled devotees with arati, singing, chanting and dancing [srnghar-arati].

3) Forenoon pastimes (purvahna-lila) 8.36-10.48 am

Krishna Govinda meets His gopa friends and takes the cows out to graze in the Vrindavana pasturelands. Although Thakuraji stays [apparently] in the temple, actually Thakuraji is out frolicking in the meadows of Vraja. Radha watches Her Praneshvara depart for the pastures, and feels very sad in Krishna’s absence. Returning home, Radha plans how to later meet Shyama in the forest. Similarly, the devotees take Thakuraji’s morning darshana and leave for their duties. Though saddened in Thakuraji’s absence, the devotees are planning when they can return for another blissful darshana of Thakuraji Radha Ramana Giridhari.

4) Midday pastimes (madhyahna-lila) 10.46 am—3.36 pm

At noon, out in the forest, Krishna and the boys enjoy a big meal, raja-bhoga, sent to Him by Yashoda Maa. Krishna’s many friends and servants enjoy His remnants, maha-prasada. Thakuraji in the temple is served in the same way. Although Thakuraji eats in private, afterwards He meets the devotees and gives them His remnants.

While Krishna’s friends rest under a shady tree, He slips away to the kunja for a midday tryst and a little nap with Radhaji and the sakhis. Since no one should see this, the pujari closes the curtain so Thakuraji can rest and enjoy His lilas within His private chamber i.e. Deity room.

5) Afternoon pastimes (aparahna-lila) 3.36-6 pm

Before long Krishna wakes up and rejoins His cowherd boyfriends. Collecting the cows, the boys sing and dance while walking back to Vraja. Nanda Baba watches from the goshalla and Yashoda stands anxiously at the door ready with a snack for her Lala. Similarly, the pujari wakes Thakuraji, offers Him fruit and sweets, and opens the Deity door so all the devotees can see their beloved once again.

6) Dusk pastimes (sayana-lila) 6-8.36 pm

In Goloka, Krishna is pampered by Yasoda and attended by His male servants, who prepare Him for His evening pastimes at home. Krishna thoroughly enjoys the evening meal with much joking and laughter, sharing boundless love with the assembled family members who participate.

Similarly, the pujaris excuse Thakuraji once again from the devotee darshana by closing the curtain. Then they personally attend to Thakuraji by washing off the dust of the day, offering fresh comfortable clothes, and letting Him relax for His evening meal.

7) Evening pastimes (pradosh-lila) 8.36-10.48 pm

As Krishna is enjoying majestic shows of talent and skill in the royal theater in Nandishvara, the temple devotees are singing and dancing for Thakuraji’s pleasure. Before Thakuraji takes rest, the priests bring him His evening repast and warm milk just as His mother Yashoda faithfully does in Gokula. For Maa’s happiness, Krishna drifts off to sleep. Similarly, in the mandir, Thakuraji is soothed by the affectionate lullabies his faithful devotees. And just before His eyelids drop, the pujaris close the curtain to take Thakuraji to his resting quarters.

8) Night pastimes (nisha-lila) 10.48 pm—3.36 am

Thakuraji’s temple is closed, the pujari goes home…and unseen by all…Thakuraji i.e. Rasaraja Shyama sneaks out again to join the cowherd girls for a night of rasa dancing, forest rambling and a sweet slumber. As Yashoda, who believes Lalaji is sleeping behind in His room, is completely unaware of what Krishna is really doing all night, Thakuraji’s devotees cannot even imagine what fun and bliss their worshipable Isatdeva is enjoying through the long night “behind closed doors.”

Thus the devotees take rest praying to dream of being with and serving Thakuraji throughout the blissful night until the auspicious time of mangala arati. In this way, one can combine Thakuraji puja with Radha-Krishna’s asta-kaliya-lila in the sweet land of eternal loving play, Gokula Vrindavana.

Radha-Krishna lila ki jai! Jaya Jaya Sri Radhe!

Mahanidhi Swami

 

We think, speak and do so many things each day. But how often do we reflect on the sweet Vraja madhurya-lilas of Radha Govinda Yugala?

 

For those treading the sacred path of heart-inspired bhakti, remembering Radha-Krishna throughout the day is essential. We must regularly pause to think of Radha and Krishna—where are They right now and what are Radha-Madhava doing?

 

Sri Rupa Gosvamipada has nicely summarized the sweet daily pastimes of Radha Govinda Yugala [asta-kaliya lila] in only eight verses. Please store these verses on your phone or print them.

 

Then time-to-time through the day read the verses and fix your heart in Vraja dhama and Lila Yugala Radhe-Shyama’s blissful pastimes. Within a short time you can memorize them, and then mentally tune into the joyful world of sweet lila whenever your heart turns in that direction. Jaya Jaya Sri Radhe!

 

Radha Govinda Yugala Asta-kaliya-lila

 

Nishanta Lila: Dawn Pastimes (3.24—6 a.m.)

I remember Radha and Krishna at night’s end, being awakened by the variegated songs of the parrots sent by Vrnda devi. With both pleasant and unpleasant poems the parrots inspire Yugala to rise from Their pleasure-bed.

 

The sakhis joyfully observe how Radha-Krishna are fatigued from from Their loving pastimes. Hearing the pinching words of the old she-monkey named Kakkhati, Radha-Madhava become afraid. And though They are still thirsty for more pastimes, Radha-Govinda scurry off to Their individual homes and go to sleep.

 

Pratah Lila: Morning Pastimes (6—8.24 a.m.)

In the morning, I take shelter of Sri Radha who is bathed and decorated by Her sakhis, and then goes to Nandagrama to cook for Krishna on the request of Vrajeshvari Yashoda. After cooking, Radhika eats Krishna’s prasadi. I also take shelter of Sri Krishna, who wakes, milks the cows, bathes and eats along with His friends.

Purvahna Lila: Pastimes at Forenoon (8.24—10.48 a.m.)

In the forenoon, I remember Sri Krishna going to the forest with His cows and friends while being followed by the Vrajavasis. Later in the morning, Krishna goes to the bank of Radha-kunda, eager to meet Sri Radha.

 

I also remember Sri Radha being ordered by Her elder Jatila to go worship Suryadeva. Anxious to hear about Krishna, Radhika sends Her sakhis to look for Krishna. Hoping for some good news, Radharani casts Her eyes down the road searching for the returning sakhis.

 

Madhyahna Lila: Midday Pastimes (10.48 a.m.—3.36 p.m.)

I remember Radha and Krishna at midday, overwhelmed by desire and enchanted by various ornament-like physical transformations of ecstasy arising out of meeting each other, yet being anxious due to shyness and eagerness, and being served by Their attendant sakhis and manjaris.

 

The joking words of Lalita and other sakhis please Radha-Madhava as They perform a Kandarpa Yajna, enjoy Jhulana, Vana-Vihara, and Jala-keli in Radha-kunda, quarrel over Krishna’s stolen flute, enjoy conjugal pastimes, drink honey-wine, worship the sun god and enjoy other sports.

 

Aparahna Lila: Afternoon pastimes (3.36—6.00 p.m.)

In the afternoon, I remember Sri Radha returning home and cooking different dishes for Her beloved Krishna. Radha bathes, dresses nicely and is filled with joy upon seeing Her lover’s lotuslike face.

 

I also remember Sri Krishna returning home with His cows and friends. Krishna feels pleased upon seeing, and later being fondled by Maa Yashoda when He meets His parents.

 

Sayahna Lila: Evening pastimes (6.00—8.24 p.m.)

In the evening, I remember Sri Radha sending many eatables to Krishna’s home through a sakhi. Later Radhika eats Vrajachandra’s prasadi brought by a sakhi.

At this time, I also remember Sri Krishna being nicely bathed, beautifully dressed and fondled by Maa Yashoda. Then Krishna milks some cows and returns to the palace to eat.

 

Pradosh Lila: Pastimes at Nightfall (8.24—10.48 p.m.)

At nightfall, I remember Sri Radha being dressed by Her sakhis in either white or dark clothes according to the moon’s luminosity. On Vrinda’s indication, Radhika and some of Her messengers go to meet Krishna in a desire tree grove in Vrindavana.

 

I also remember Sri Krishna, who witnesses artful games in the assembly of cowherders before His affectionate mother carefully takes Him to bed. Shortly later, Krishna slips away to go to solitary grove to meet Radhika.

 

Nakta Lila: Night Pastimes (10.48 p.m.—3.36 a.m.)

In the night, I remember Radha and Krishna, who are intensely eager to meet and being attended by Vrinda in many ways. Radhe-Shyama and Their priya-sakhis play, sing and dance in the forest. After enjoying many pastimes, Radha Govinda Yugala sleep on a nice flowerbed, being attended by Their loving sakhis.

 

Alternate reading: At night, I remember Radha and Krishna meeting together and being worshipped by Vrinda with various items. Lila Yugala Radha-Madhava enjoy joking riddles, sweet talks, plays and Rasa and Lasya dances with Their dearest sakhis. Radha-Madhava drink honeywine, and master various kinds of ever-increasing conjugal bliss in the nikunja.

Radha-Madhava nitya-lila smarana ki jai! Jaya Jaya Sri Radhe!