Tag Archive for: VrajaLila

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

Krishnacandra, who can do anything, held His cupped hands to His lotus mouth and drank the forest fire as if it were liquid ambrosia. It appeared that His majestic power personified had swallowed the fire. Usually it takes a torrential downpour to stop a forest fire. But Krishna, however, who easily extinguishes the blazing fire of material existence, put out the fire with a sidelong glance. Out of compassion for the cows, Krishna saved them with a mere touch of His own energy.

Krishna attracts worldly people to His transcendental pastimes by showing His majestic opulence from time to time. As one presses pulp to extract the essence, Krishna’s pastimes reveal the essence of the Absolute Truth. This is not surprising since Krishna is the Supreme Parabrahman, the embodiment of all power who energizes the sun, moon, and fire. At the same time He is full of variegated personal energies.

At one moment Krishna kills the demon Bakasura, and the next moment He relishes intimate pastimes with the gopis. Sometimes He covers His sweet personal aspect, and displays the inestimable power of His unlimited majestic opulences. Besides acting as the resting place of Brahman, Krishna shelters all types of energies.

Therefore, swallowing a tiny forest fire is an insignificant feat for such a wonderful personality as Krishna, who is the combined form of complete sweetness and majesty. What scholar would not become totally captivated when trying to understand the inconceivable truth of Sri Krishna?

Inspired and blissful over the whole pastime, Brahma and other demigods showered flowers from the celestial gardens. The flower shower appeared like the falling of an unlimited number of teardrops mixed with kajala. Krishna pleased the demigods by happily accepting their prayers. By the arrangement of Yogamaya no one saw Krishna swallow the forest fire.

Afterwards Krishna returned to the gopas who were relaxing with the cows in the cool sweet shade of Bhandiravat. Smiling mildly, Krishna said, “Now you understand why I asked you to close your eyes. Now open your eyes and look at Me.”

The gopas opened their eyes and exclaimed, “O look! What happened? Did we go crazy? Where is that forest fire? Was it just a dream? Somehow we are just sitting here peacefully under the banyan tree with the cows.” Feeling astonished, the cowherd boys became silent.

The cows felt happy and secure now that the forest fire was extinguished. Seeing Krishna, whose feet are the supreme objects of worship and the epitome of purity, the cows became overwhelmed with joy. The cows cried while repeatedly licking and smelling the Lord’s transcendental body due to intense affection.

Reciprocating with them, Krishna compassionately fondled the cows with His delicate pinkish palms. 

Excerpt: Sri Kavi Karnapura’s Ananda Vrindavana Campu ki jai!

Krishna Nectar Lilas ki jai! Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

All parts of Krishna Nectar Lilas can be found here.

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

Once upon a time while Damodara, Balarama, Sridama, Sudama, Subala and the other gopas rested beside the Yamuna, the cows, attracted by the fresh sprouted grass, wandered deep into a nearby forest named Munjatavi. For no apparent reason the birds sleeping in the trees suddenly startled, filled with fear, and darted from the treetops when the cows entered the forest.   

Krishna, whose eyes are colored like pink lotus flowers and who is the inner guide of all living entities, noticed that the gopas had become apprehensive about the safety of the cows. In a mood of love Krishna compassionately addressed them, “Hey friends! Look! Where have our cows gone?

Only the light of happiness shines in this forest full of birds and deer. So there is really no need to worry about the cows. Nevertheless, since we cannot see any of them right now, let us go find the cows and rejoice again in their company.”

After the beautiful Lord spoke, the gopas, who are expert in herding cows, looked for partially chewed grass, fresh hoof prints in the soil, and any other signs of the cows’ movements. Following these signs, they walked through the densely foliated forest. Reaching the end of their desire to search any longer, the cowherd boys became doubtful and apprehensive about the safety of the cows. They resembled people who become full of distress and lamentation after not finding any happiness in life.

Suddenly the gopas saw a powerful forest fire devouring all the dry reeds and grass in its path. Their eyes burned from the blustery hot winds generated by that fire. Overwhelmed with sadness and anxiety, the cowherd boys looked at each other with tear-filled eyes. Their movements resembled a bewildered man who prays when facing difficulty. Not finding the cows, the gopas just kept thinking about them.

Meanwhile, seeing no sign of their masters, no escape from the fire, and no hope for survival, the cows cried in fear. Upon returning to the Bhandiravat tree, the gopas reported the results of their search. Krishna responded by promising to personally save the cows from imminent death. Although Krishna is the Supreme Brahman and a cintamani gem fulfilling the desires of all, He assumes the form of an ordinary human being.

Dashing into the Munjatavi forest, Krishna summoned the cows with a sweet tune from His flute. Then He called them individually with His melodious voice, “Hee! Hee! Hee! Hey Dhavalike! Hey Candani! Hey Nandini! Hey Mukte! Hey Indu-tilake! Hey Kasturi! Hey Karpurike! Hey Pinge! Hey Rangini! Hey Dhumale! Hey Kinjalike! Hey Syame! Hey Ketuki! Hey Candrike! Hey Shavalike! Hey Kasmirike! Hey Campake! Hee! Hee! Hee!”

The transcendental vibration of Krishna’s magnificent murali enchanted the entire universe and attracted the cows. Hearing the gentle sound of Krishna’s sweet flute reassured the cows of their imminent rescue.  Overwhelmed with joy, the cows eagerly waited for Krishna.

But since they were trapped in a ring of fire they could not see their savior. In desperation they cried in response to Krishna’s call. Their voices choked with fear, the cows continually vibrated a piteous “Humba! Humba! Humba!”

Though far beyond the comprehension of munis, jnanis, and impersonalists, Krishna is easily seen by His pure devotees. Hearing the wailing of the cows in the distance, Nandanandana, Haladhara, and Their gopa friends felt reassured that they were nearby.

The brilliant effulgences and radiant smiles of the cowherd boys dispelled the deep darkness of the forest as they rushed toward the cows. The rising tidal wave of jubilation cleansed all anxieties from their bewildered minds.

Then by the arrangement of Providence, the boys found the cows standing helplessly unprotected in the middle of a blazing fire. “Alas! Look how they are suffering! They are in great danger and very close to death,” thought the cowherd boys.

The greatly distressed cows immersed their minds in thoughts of Krishna while staring at Him with shining, tear-filled eyes. Being the limitless ocean of compassion, Krishna felt very much aggrieved to see their agonized condition.

The raging flames of the fire reached so high into the sky that even a torrential downpour could not extinguish them. Before immediately swallowing that uncontrollable forest fire, Krishna, whose face is incomparably beautiful, addressed His followers, “O friends! Just close your eyes, forget about this illusion, and be happy again.”

The cowherd boys, their long hair hanging attractively over their shoulders, closed their eyes while Krishna displayed a drop of His unlimited opulence. 

Excerpt: Sri Kavi Karnapura’s Ananda Vrindavana Campu ki jai!

Krishna Nectar Lilas ki jai! Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

All parts of Krishna Nectar Lilas can be found here.

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

One summer day the brilliantly powerful brothers Krishna and Balarama, surrounded by Their associates and displaying wonderful grace and beauty, came to Bhandiravana forest to enjoy pastimes. The moment the Lord desired to enjoy a particular pastime, all the necessary paraphernalia automatically appeared. Nourished by eating the fresh green grass and satisfied by drinking the crystal clear water from the valleys of Giri-Govardhana, the cows relaxed peacefully in the dense shade of the banyan trees.

The gopas wore garlands of freshly blossomed mallika flowers and natural earrings made from sirisa flowers. They tied garlands of kurci flowers in their hair. Adorned with these attractive fragrant flowers, the two brothers, Balarama and Damodara played happily with Their friends.

One boy sang in a very sweet voice. Some boys played musical instruments while others danced. Sometimes Krishna vibrated His flute while Balarama danced. At other times, Krishna danced to the singing of Balarama and His friends.

In a melodious tone Krishna called the gopas, “Ho! Ho! My brothers! Now stop your dancing because we are going to play a new game.”

While running to meet their friend, the gopas replied, “O Damodara! What sort of game do You want to play?”

Krishna said, “Listen! Let us divide ourselves into two parties. One party will go with the powerful Balarama and the other party will side with Me.” Thus Krishna divided His friends into two parties in order to hold a contest of strength. The boys in Balarama’s party followed Him like loyal soldiers and the other boys accompanied Krishna.

The losing party had to carry the victors on their backs. Krishna’s party lost, and even though Krishna carries the whole universe in His belly, He had to carry Sridama on His shoulders.

Under the influence of time, Pralambasura, the deceitful one, disguised himself as a cowherd boy and secretly mixed with Krishna’s friends. Being defeated in the contest, Pralambasura had to carry the victorious Baladeva, who looked extremely enchanting and effulgent with sandalwood paste daubed on His golden white body. Taking Balarama on his shoulders, the demon carried Him to the edge of the Bhandiravana forest.

Pralambasura thrilled with the thought; “I have accomplished my mission. Like a thief I have broken all the rules of the game and stolen a valuable jewel.”

At first Balarama was amazed at the extraordinary power of His carrier, but then He instantly understood the situation. Smiling mildly, Balarama called out to His playful younger brother, “O Damodara! Hey Manorama! Just as insanity robs one’s intelligence, this demon is trying kidnap Me. O You of infallible will power! What should I do now? Hey relisher of mellows! Without hesitating any longer, please give Me proper instructions.”

Krishna felt somewhat amused to see and hear all of this. Then in a thundering voice He assured Baladeva, “Give up all Your fears. Why are You submitting to illusion? Just remember Your own divine power and slay the demon.”

Using His unrivaled strength, which far exceeded the power of the thunderbolts Indra uses to cut the wings of mountains, Balarama, the elder brother of Madhusudana, smashed the demon’s head into little pieces with His fist. With tremendous power the Lord drove the demon to the kingdom of Yama.

Before departing, the demon assumed a huge grotesque form. The Vrajavasis thought that Balarama, whose complexion is whiter than fresh camphor, looked like the full moon sitting on top of the dome-like covering of the universe as He sat upon the demon’s shoulders.

The demon’s body had a dark smoky color. But due to profuse bleeding his hideous body now looked like a cluster of clouds in the reddish sky at sunset. Covered completely in blood, Pralambasura slowly fell to the ground. While falling he appeared like the sun setting behind the Vindhya Mountain, which is covered with red asoka flowers. The splendid demigods, who are expert in glorifying others, showered flowers on the head of Balarama to celebrate His victory over the demon.

The notorious demon named Pralamba had displayed great tantric magic. But eventually he perished under the fierce blows of Baladeva whose chariot bears the symbol of a palm tree. In front of everyone, Balarama humbly accepted the name Pralambaghna (one who removes all sins from the heart) honorably bestowed upon Him by Lord Indra. Thereafter Balarama met with His brother Damodara, who always gives joy to others and is dear to all the gopas.

Proud of His recent accomplishment, Balarama felt unlimitedly blissful within His mind. But He became confused upon seeing the bewildered faces of the cowherd boys when He rejoined Krishna who was resting in the shade of a beautiful banyan tree named Bhandiravat. 

Excerpt: Sri Kavi Karnapura’s Ananda Vrindavana Campu ki jai!

Krishna Nectar Lilas ki jai! Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

All parts of Krishna Nectar Lilas can be found here.

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

The arrival of the summer season brought a suitable time for Krishna to relish refreshing pastimes with Sri Radha. But when Krishna played with Balarama and the cowherd boys at this time, He felt the scorching heat of summer manifesting within Himself as the burning pain of separation from Radhika. Before telling the next pastime, I will describe the summer season in Vrndavana.

During the summer, the pathways become hard and dry from the blistering heat of the sun. A person’s fingernails become brittle and crack. But inside the caves of Govardhana, where Krishna secretly enjoys with His beloveds, there is always a soothing and cooling atmosphere due to its natural springs and small ponds of water. The waves of the Yamuna meander lazily by her blistering banks of sand. People also move slowly due to the heat.

Profuse perspiration brings relief from the sizzling sunrays. Everyone forgets the discomfort of perspiring by smelling the pleasing fragrance of sirisa flowers. The tops of the trees hang down to form natural canopies, which shade the footpaths and kindly protect the Vrajavasis from the pinching rays of the sun.

In Vrndavana’s cool shady groves the vanadevis (forest maidens) are busy making delightful arrangements for Radha-Krishna’s confidential pastimes. Scattered here and there are various kunjas (natural cottages) made of groups of lush bushes, trees, and vines that have entrance doors on one side.

The vanadevis keep a variety of pleasurable substances such as pan, candana, and pots of cool sandal-scented water inside the kunjas.. There are also containers of refreshing drinks like madhu and mango nectar waiting to satisfy the Divine Couple and relieve Their fatigue.


Excerpt: Sri Kavi Karnapura’s Ananda Vrindavana Campu ki jai!

Krishna Nectar Lilas ki jai! Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

All parts of Krishna Nectar Lilas can be found here.

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

Then Yasoda addressed Radhika, “Hey Vrsabhanunandini! Your preparations give complete satisfaction. From now on my dear son Krishna must only eat food cooked by Your hands. He will no longer accept any meal cooked by another. So in very sweet words I will seek permission from Your elders, and definitely they will allow You to cook for my son. For doing this service I will reward You with opulent dresses and ornaments. From now You must come to my house and prepare all of Krishna’s meals with a joyful heart.”

On hearing Yasoda’s statement, Kirtida (Radhika’s mother) said, “O Vrajesvari Yasoda! You are the Queen of our lives. Your order has greatly enhanced the beauty, love and affection of Radhika. Those who know the workings of love will be pleased by your request. Everyday Radhika will come and skillfully cook for your son. As soon as the sun rises She will go to your house. By your mercy the kingdom of Vrndavana now shines with transcendental glory and stands beyond the effects of time. Your pleasure alone is our ultimate goal.”

After receiving the consent of Her elders, Radhika could now freely associate with Her beloved from that day on. As Krishna continued to relish the nectarean foods cooked by Her hands, Radhika’s desire to offer Him the sweet nectar of Her lips increased day by day.

Meanwhile, another sakhi named Candravali had tied up Gokulacandra (Krishna) in the prison house of her heart like a thief. Whenever Krishna and Candravali met, They looked immensely beautiful. At that time the heart of Candravali, which possesses the wealth of supreme beauty, would melt in anticipation. For she hankered always to be pierced by the arrow of Krishna’s love. All the gopis headed by Candravali were like flowers of love emanating the highly praiseworthy fragrance of the joy of meeting Krishna. In assessing the stage of their budding love, one could understand that within a year their love would flourish and clearly express itself.

Sometime later, on the pretext of picking flowers, the Vraja gopis met their beloved Krishna in a lonely garden decorated with fresh, untouched creepers and enjoyed intimate pastimes with Him. Krishna, who is more beautiful than a fresh rain cloud, is the totally independent well-wisher of everyone. He is the sole object of love for the gopis and all the other Vrajavasis devoid of envy.

Now the Vraja gopis freely displayed their love without any pretension. Because their superiors did not practice fault finding the young girls of Gokula did not fear criticism. Since their birth, the Vraja gopis had an overflowing loving attraction for Krishna. They no longer felt any need to hide their feelings. Fully exhibiting their frivolous moods, the gopis delighted in forest pastimes with their beloved. Discarding all inhibitions, they completely fulfilled their heart’s desires.

The husbands of the gopis observed all the proper rules of social etiquette, but for some reason they did not prevent their wives from running to the forest. Just see the wonderful workings of Yogamaya who made all the necessary arrangements to nourish the rasa of these eternally perfect lovers of Krishna. But surprisingly enough, under the influence of the same Yogamaya potency the gopis felt extremely anxious and apprehensive about their illicit love for Krishna. They thought, “We gopis are married to other men, therefore we are parakiya or belonging to others.”

Besides creating such thoughts within the gopis, Yogamaya arranged that their secret meetings with Krishna remained hidden from their superiors. How did she accomplish this? The fathers-and mothers-in-law and the husbands of the gopis thought of themselves as their superiors and protectors. For those having this false pride, Yogamaya arranged for a mayic expansion or duplicate of each gopi to remain home beside her husband, while the original spiritual body of that gopi went out to meet Krishna.

Yogamaya performed these tasks perfectly. On the other hand, to pacify Krishna’s parents Yogamaya made a completely different arrangement. Krishna, whose character is praised by even Brahma and Siva, is famous for His elegance and ability to control Cupid. Although these qualities usually disappear as a boy matures, tender beauty and impudent behavior mingled within Krishna’s youthful form. Due to this, Nanda and Yasoda who were tied to Him by the creeper of parental affection, thought that Krishna would remain perpetually as their little boy.

Despite their thinking, Krishna soon blossomed into manhood. At this time the gopis saw Krishna as a handsome most lovable young man, but His parents continued to see Him as their darling son. As a result, Nanda and Yasoda did not feel any suspicion when Krishna met secretly with the lovelorn, lotus-eyed gopis. To satisfy the Lord’s desire to relish parakiya bhava, Yogamaya also arranged for the gopis to maintain the consciousness of identifying as other men’s wives. Just see the amazing power of Krishna’s Yogamaya potency! 

Excerpt: Sri Kavi Karnapura’s Ananda Vrindavana Campu ki jai!

Krishna Nectar Lilas ki jai! Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

All parts of Krishna Nectar Lilas can be found here.

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

Noticing that Radhika was not serving Krishna, Yasoda told Her, “Without Your help Syama-sakhi will not be able to serve properly.  Why don’t You help her serve Krishna.” Although eager to do this, Radhika tried to restrain Her restless heart. Soon, however, a bad star appeared to destroy Her restraint and remove Her fickle modesty. Radharani’s mind is completely saturated with a mood of eternal love and Her blissful form brightens the world with a wonderful effulgence. Although Her hand trembled due to fear, Radhika controlled it and served Krishna. On the order of Vrajesvari, Radhika and Syama-sakhi served Krishna and His friends like Subala and Kusumasava.

“O look!” boasted Kusumasava, “Although I am the best among the brahmanas, still I have become sanctified by honoring this food which has been personally served by the hand of the daughter of Vrsabhanu. Do you know why this is true? Radhika is Maha Laksmi-devi Herself. Is there any woman in the world equal to Her? Hey Krishna, my self-effulgent friend! After relishing the food cooked by Radhika, we no longer want to eat food cooked by anyone else.”

While Radhika served the food with great dexterity and devotion, Kusumasava continued to laugh and make jokes. Speaking in varying tones, he sometimes spoke quickly and then very slowly. With his funny talks and antics, he entertained the entire assembly.

Pretending to be angry, Krishna addressed Kusumasava, “Hey Vacal! (talkative one) Take your meal and stop your mocking and joking. Do not create such pandemonium. Besides what is the use of all your silly talks?”

Kusumasava replied, “Accepting Your instruction, am I supposed to become like a dumb man and just eat silently? Even if I had a hundred mouths, I could not properly glorify the superb quality of this food. It’s taste is just beyond my imagination to explain.”

While eating Krishna gave some food to a parrot that sat between He and Kusumasava. The parrot accepted the offerings with great happiness. Feeling grateful, he extended his neck and looked restlessly here and there as if preparing to speak. Observing the actions of the parrot, Yasoda said, “O best among the dvijas (brahmanas or birds)! Speak out whatever is on your mind.”

The brahmana Batu (Kusumasava) immediately replied in a loud voice,  “O just see! Today I have become the best of the twice born.”

Yasoda replied, “I am not speaking to you. I am addressing the parrot.”

The parrot said, “O son of the twice-born (Batu)! Do not show off your word jugglery. You seem to be more crazy and talkative than I am. Do not spoil Krishna’s happy mood by speaking any more nonsense.”

Vrajaraja Nanda said, “From where has this wise bird come? Why did this parrot become morose upon hearing the glories of Laksmi-devi and Radhika?”

Yasoda said, “Just listen to the history of this parrot. It is not fitting to compare Radhika with one of the demigods.”

The parrot said, “Why didn’t you give a suitable reply on my behalf?”

After hearing these talks, Radhika and Syama-sakhi met in the kitchen, removed the veils from their heads, and started joking and laughing. Radhika said, “O Syame! One with a beautiful face! These two twice-borns (Batu and the parrot)are engaged in some nonsense talk about Me. So now you continue serving by yourself.” After saying this Radhika remained in the kitchen.

Not seeing Radha, Yasoda thought, “Perhaps Radhika became shy upon hearing the parrot glorify Her, so She stopped serving.” Yasoda then went to encourage Radhika. Accepting her proposal, Radha served again but in another part of the room. Noticing this, Yasoda approached Radhika and said, “It is natural for a cultured girl to feel shy upon hearing her own glories.

“But my darling, You are not the daughter of Vrsabhanu, but You are the daughter of the ocean. O sweet-faced one! You should serve the same line You did before.” Surrendering to mother Yasoda, Radhika continued serving Krishna and His friends.

Besides enjoying the meal, Nanda Maharaja especially appreciated the cooking expertise of Radhika. Fully satisfied, he laughed and joked with great joy. With great gusto he relished the six kinds of tastes which Radha had presented in a pleasing way. He gave the utmost praise to Radhika for cooking so perfectly.

Balarama and His friends felt full satisfaction. Krishna experienced exceptional flavors while eating the food cooked and served by Radhika. Since all the preparations contained the fragrance of Her conjugal love, Krishna savored the sweet madhurya-rasa of Radhika’s heart with every bite.

Vrsabhanu concluded the festive occasion by joyfully distributing tambula, valuable ornaments, garlands, and sandalwood pulp to all the guests. Radhika enthusiastically served the mothers of Krishna and Balarama, who displayed sublime gravity and kindness, as many sweets as they desired. While relishing the sweets and delighting in Radhika’s service mood, the two mothers conversed among themselves.

Yasoda said, “That expert talker Batu spoke correctly when he said, ‘O friend! After eating food cooked by this server you will not want to eat anyone else’s cooking.’ ”

Excerpt: Sri Kavi Karnapura’s Ananda Vrindavana Campu ki jai!

Krishna Nectar Lilas ki jai! Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

All parts of Krishna Nectar Lilas can be found here.

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

Before Yasoda could finish speaking, Kirtida interjected, “Wait!

Let my darling Radhika serve the King and Queen of Vrndavana, along with their sons Krishna and Balarama who are like a pair of fresh blue and white lotuses. Radhika should also serve Rohini, the personified jewel of all good qualities. The intimate friends of Radhika such as Lalita and Syama-sakhi, who are also experienced servers, should distribute food to Krishna’s friends.”

Although this order filled Radhika’s ears with nectar, it created a dilemma due to the rising waves of love within Her heart. Radharani could not accept the proposal, but at the same time She did not want to refuse the request. Inertia overtook Radhika’s mind. As the gentle, sweet smile slowly disappeared from Her tender sprout-like lips, Radhika bashfully confided in her mother.

Radhika said, “I am feeling overwhelmed with feelings of shyness and reluctance. Therefore, I will only serve the divine queen of Vrndavana, who is the embodiment of absolute fortune, and her family members privately in the inner chambers. Let Syama-sakhi serve a line of guests sitting on the outer veranda.”

Syama-sakhi, a clever expert in juggling words, said, “O doe-eyed one! Your statements are unreasonable. Let Your father Vrsabhanu, who is as powerful as the sun, more famous than Lord Siva and the purifier of the fallen, serve the guests sitting on veranda.”

After listening to the sweet talks of these sakhis whose pleasing voices sounded like the warbling of swans, Yasoda, the reservoir of parental affection, said, “O my two well-behaved girls! Do not be afraid, but listen to my words and you will benefit. Following my suggestion, you should learn the proper method of serving. Now both of you become proficient in this art.”

After giving this instruction, mother Yasoda, who is pure and famous, walked out on the huge, gem-studded veranda. She ordered her servants to properly arrange the wooden seats. They fixed fine white covers on the seats and made all comfortable arrangements.

Then Haladhara, the brother of Krishna, who subdues the demons and whose bright complexion outshines the purest crystal, sat on the right side of Nanda Maharaja. Krishna, whose body is more brilliant than a blue sapphire, sat on his left. The brahmana boy Batu, who is an expert joker with a very strong and beautiful neck, sat next to Krishna. Subala, who is strong, wealthy, and full of deep affection for Krishna and the other sakhas, sat beside Batu.

The respectable and handsome Nanda Maharaja, the main cause Gokula’s wealth, cleansed his feet and sat down. Everyone in the assembly drowned in joy upon seeing beam a pleasant smile. Radhika, the goddess of personified beauty, came before the honorable King of Vrndavana and respectfully offered him lotus flowers in Her folded palms. Then Yasoda summoned Radhika to serve the foodstuffs. With a heart full of joy Radhika served Nanda Maharaja while Syama-sakhi served Krishna and Balarama.

Excerpt: Sri Kavi Karnapura’s Ananda Vrindavana Campu ki jai!

Krishna Nectar Lilas ki jai! Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

All parts of Krishna Nectar Lilas can be found here.

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

Yasoda entered the kitchen to check on Radhika. Appearing in Vrndavana as personified bliss, Radhika made a wonderful feast with Her expert cooking and tasteful arrangements. Seeing mother Yasoda entering the kitchen, Radhika offered her respectful obeisances. Yasoda, the bearer of beauty and fame for her family, felt boundless affection for Radhika.

Smiling joyfully, Yasoda said, “The art of cooking is like the jewel in the ornament of praise for the female class. Even though Your beautiful body is as delicate as a flower, You have taken on this heavy burden of cooking. And by doing so Your elegance has enhanced.” Although Radhika had worked very hard, She did not feel the least bit tired. When requested by Yasoda, Radhika felt shy about displaying all the items that She had prepared.

Mother Yasoda said, “Just see what amazing delicacies You have made. One can easily perceive all Your good qualities of taste, beauty, and fragrance in these astonishing preparations. Your perfect cooking has turned everything into ambrosia.” Then giving Radha a full embrace, Yasoda congratulated Her saying, “Darling, bravo! I really appreciate Your expertise in cooking. Seeing Your skill has removed whatever unhappiness I felt within myself.”

Her face glowing like the full moon, Yasoda continued her joyful mood. She embraced the fragrant youthful Lalita and Syama-sakhi and praised them saying, “O Lalite! O Syame! O Visakhe! Your friendly dealings with each other, and your respectful attitude toward your superiors is certainly commendable. For this is the standard of behavior of cultured people.”

After glorifying Radhika, who is expert in all arts, and Her girlfriends, Yasoda turned to Rohini-devi and said, “O mother of Balabhadra! Learned persons always honor such mutual loving affection. This Radhika, who is delicate and tender by nature, has filled my heart with ecstasy. She appears in this world like an auspicious flower from Nanda-kanana, or a beautiful creeper of sandalwood. Radhika is the ripened fruit of the tree of Vrsabhanu’s piety. Radhika is a rare jewel-mine of the best qualities found in the three worlds.” 

Rohini replied, “O Yasoda! Everything you said is perfectly correct. There is no doubt about it. Moreover, the delightful son of the lord of Vrndavana is an ocean of good qualities and Radhika is Sumukhi, sweetness personified. O Yasoda, this pair of jewels is the central ornament on the neck of the goddess of Vrndavana. They give pleasure to anyone who sees or hears about Them.”

Feeling bashful over hearing Her praises, Radhika gently lowered Her head in shyness. From observing Radhika’s facial expressions, Syama-sakhi and the other gopis detected the joy swirling within Her heart. They smiled slightly in understanding and thought within themselves, “O Rohini-devi! Your statements disclose our inner thoughts. Truly you are blessed. Without a doubt rain gives cooling relief to one tortured by scorching sunshine. There is a deeper more satisfying meaning to your statement that Radhika and Syama-sakhi are the jewels on the neck of the goddess of Vrndavana. Everyone holds this pair of jewels on their heads. Do you not feel repentant about engaging this delicate girl in such difficult work?”

As the sun lights up the entire universe, similarly, with her pure consciousness Kirtida illuminates her family and increases their fame. After embracing her, Yasoda said, “O Kirtida! Why did you engage the youthful Radhika in the toilsome duty of cooking, which is usually done by the elderly housewives? You should not have caused such distress to the fresh flower-like body of Radhika, who has wilted from the heat of the cooking fires. Don’t you feel repentant over this?”   

Kirtida replied, “O Vrajesvari! Indeed, I took a risk by engaging Radhika in that work. But the fact is that Radhika is an expert cook. And besides, this particular festival we are hosting will fill everyone with delight. The munificent king of the cowherd men, his wife, and children will all enjoy a wonderful feast here today. Actually Radhika, who possesses brilliant intelligence, willfully engaged Herself in this service with great happiness and enthusiasm.

“Moreover Radhika has a natural ability in Her hand so that whatever She cooks exhibits the best qualities of taste, beauty, and fragrance. O you who have such strong affection for Radhika! Being eager to please his guests, Radha’s father humorously asked Her to help. The majority of the feast preparations are being made in another big kitchen. In this kitchen Radhika is cooking only a few especially delectable items. Is there anyone in Vrndavana not considering himself blessed today? But since you are the most worshipable lady in Vrndavana, I think you should take charge here. If that will make you happy, then I am sure all the problems with the festival will be solved.”

Vrajesvari Yasoda replied, “Let Rohini, who is famous for her expertise in serving, distribute all the food items lovingly cooked by Radhika.”

Excerpt: Sri Kavi Karnapura’s Ananda Vrindavana Campu ki jai!

Krishna Nectar Lilas ki jai! Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

All parts of Krishna Nectar Lilas can be found here.

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

On the day of the mahotsava King Vrsabhanu beamed happily like the rays of the rising sun. Vrajesvari Yasoda received a warm greeting upon arriving in Varsana. After offering obeisances to the queen of Vrndavana, the younger ladies of the house glorified her, “Please listen attentively as we recount how Kirtida-devi (Radhika’s mother) praised you. She said, ‘Even Sarasvati cannot properly describe the wonderful nature of the creeper of mother Yasoda’s parental love. Then how can I possibly glorify her? As a devotee of Lord Hari can remove the miseries of material existence, similarly, Yasoda’s visit to our house will remove all inauspiciousness.

“Rohini-devi and her all-auspicious family members will be also welcomed into our house. I hope they will be kind and bestow their compassion on me. Tell them that they need not bathe at home, but they can quickly come here and do all their bathing in our palace.”

Vrajesvari Yasoda affectionately addressed them, “O ladies! You have conquered us with your humble praises. You need not treat us so respectfully or worry about us because we can take care of ourselves.”

King Vrsabhanu had collected beautiful paraphernalia from all directions in order to offer a royal reception to Maharaja Nanda, the king of the cowherd men. Lavish decorations beautified the entire city of Varsana. Beginning from the city gate, gorgeous ornaments adorned the entire royal road. Strings of sweetly jingling bells hung over the roadway. Auspicious water pots lined the sides of the road. Coconuts set on mango leaves rested above shiny brass pots.

Rows of decorated lamps accented the atmosphere. Being nicely swept and cleansed, the main road appeared free from dirt and dust. The densely foliated branches of the dark green banana trees prevented the sun’s rays from shining on the path. Kettledrums and mrdangas resounded melodiously in glorification. They created a festive atmosphere to greet the party of Nanda Maharaja.

After making all the arrangements Vrsabhanu Maharaja petitioned Surya-deva, his worshipable deity, to make his endeavors successful. Then he went to the path beside the main road and waited expectantly for the arrival of his guests. Rows of fruit-bearing betel trees lined both sides of the lane on which Vrsabhanu stood. First he saw the attractive young prince of Vrndavana strolling before His relatives.

Surrounded by His friends, Krishna illuminated the world with the brilliant effulgence coming from His lightning hued dhoti. The gopis cherishing paramour love for Krishna strongly desired to embrace His lotus feet that now graced the earth of Varsana. Thus Krishna, the personification of srngara rasa, entered the vision of the eager King Vrsabhanu.

Other family members such as the queen of Vrndavana, who is totally free from all faults and falsity, walked behind Krishna. Nanda Maharaja, who brings joy to the earth like a veritable manifestation of all good fortune, and his associates followed behind. Seeing them, Vrsabhanu Maharaja rushed forward to warmly embrace Krishna, the moon of Gokula who has attractive curly, dark blue hair. After bending his head slightly to show respect to the king and queen of Vrndavana, Vrsabhanu led them to his palace. 

Upon entering the palace, King Vrsabhanu expertly arranged sitting places for his guests according to their position. He provided for all their comforts by engaging his servants in carefully and respectfully bathing, massaging, and dressing them. Everyone felt happy and refreshed from the fatigue of the journey after the warm reception.

Excerpt: Sri Kavi Karnapura’s Ananda Vrindavana Campu ki jai!

Krishna Nectar Lilas ki jai! Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

All parts of Krishna Nectar Lilas can be found here.

Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das

Once upon a time, the illustrious and powerful King Vrsabhanu met with his ministers to discuss inviting Vrajaraja Nanda and his family for a visit. With all intelligence Vrsabhanu Maharaja submissively upheld the family traditions, and executed them in a wonderful beautiful way. He desired to celebrate the festival in grand style, and He wanted Radhika, the embodiment of the art of cooking, to prepare Her finest dishes.

He sent a nursemaid’s daughter named Sucarita, who possessed good character and auspicious qualities, to convey his plan to Radha. Coming before Radha, Sucarita said, “Your parents want You to prepare a grand feast for the upcoming visit of the king of Vrndavana. I will not leave here until I see You depart for Your father’s palace.” As the sakhis happily worship Radhika, She fills them with joy in return.

Sucarita also addressed the other sakhis attending Radhika, “Listen Syame! Radha’s father wants you to give up your pretension of laziness and help the other sakhis. It will be good for you to uphold the etiquette of family traditions. O Visakhe! You should also bring your friend Lalita who always exhibits a playful nature.”

Smiling, Lalita replied to Sucarita, “O auspicious one! Why are we suddenly invited to a festival?”

Sucarita replied, “It is not a surprise event. When the king of Vrndavana celebrated Krishna’s birthday he invited everyone to participate. After attending this mahotsava, King Vrsabhanu got the idea to hold a similar festival in his palace. So naturally he thought to invite the king of the cowherd men who possesses pure consciousness. After riding in the chariot of the mind for long time, this joyful festival is about to be held. It will definitely be an ecstatic event.”

Syama-sakhi said, “O one who excels all in good qualities! No doubt it will be a wonderful festival. Who will not enjoy great bliss by attending this rewarding festival? We must immediately start preparing, since this is the order of Radha’s father.”

Then all the gopis went to the magnificent palace of King Vrsabhanu. It seemed that the embodiment of all joyous festivals had manifested there. King Vrsabhanu welcomed the sakhis, “Are you all feeling happy?” After Radhika paid obeisances, He smelled Her head and said, “O auspicious one! Please use all Your cooking skills to make very delicious and tempting preparations. Surely Your lotus hands will attain perfection by cooking this feast. Tomorrow the king of the cowherd men, his wife, family, and Krishna and Balarama will take their meal here.”

Lalita said, “O father! Have you collected all the necessary ingredients?”

King Vrsabhanu replied, “Not just today, but for many days we have been arranging for this mahotsava. For a long time I have been eager to observe this. Now all the ingredients have been procured in unlimited amounts. You cannot see the end of them. Enter the storeroom and see for yourself. Please consider if all the proper divine articles and items have been assembled. If the best of anything remains to be collected, then please tell me and I will immediately get it.”

All the effulgent, slender-waisted sakhis like Lalita, Visakha, and others expert in the art of cooking met and joyfully entered the enchanting kitchen. After paying obeisances to Mother Kirtida the sakhis inspected the ingredients.

Meanwhile, Krishna returned from the forest with the cows. Seeing her approaching son, Mother Yasoda, who is glorified by all the demigods like Lord Siva and Brahma, anxiously desired to speak to Him. In a lovable, unpretentious way Krishna cast fresh, sidelong glances to reciprocate with each one of His friends. He walked with the gait of a lordly elephant in rut.

Yasoda said in a sweet voice, “O Vatsa! The honorable King Vrsabhanu, who is opulent with the wealth of many bulls, desires to host You tomorrow at his palace. After consulting his ministers and associates he sent an invitation. My darling, You should go there tomorrow to reciprocate with his loving request. Your friends will stay back to tend the cows. So tomorrow You need not go to the forest.”

Krishna, the ocean of compassion, said, “How is it possible for Me to go alone and eat without My friends? What is the use of such an invitation.” Yasoda, who fully knows the laws of social etiquette, replied, “Do not be distressed in Your mind. If You cannot give up Your attachment to Your friends, then just stay home with them.”

After she said this, Krishna, who removes the distress of everyone in the universe, forgot about going to the forest. Contemplating the upcoming festival, Krishna remembered the sweet name, form, and qualities of Radhika. As Krishna fixed His mind on Radhika, His affection for Radha increased more and more. Then Krishna meditated on all the wonderful preparations that Radha would make on the order of Her father. 

Excerpt: Sri Kavi Karnapura’s Ananda Vrindavana Campu ki jai!

Krishna Nectar Lilas ki jai! Jai Jai Sri Radhe!

All parts of Krishna Nectar Lilas can be found here.