Kartik month

October 15, 2016, Mathura
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We are here to commence our Vraja mandala Parikrama or Kartik Parikrama. I have told how the month of Kartik has many names. It has been called by many different names. One name for the month of Kartik is NiyamSeva mas. Niyam means to follow the rules and regulations of the scriptures, mas means month. That means, this month is meant for following all the rules and regulations of the scriptures in order to develop our spiritual life. Especially since everyone cannot follow all of the rules and regulations in the scriptures for the four months of Chaturmasya. Sometimes, most are traveling and it is not possible for them to follow all the rules and regulations of the scriptures. You can be traveling from somewhere where it is midnight, then arrive at your destination in a few hours and it is now midday. There can be a complete time difference and there can also be other factors. Your physical health could not be good enough for you to follow all of the rules and regulations. In the same way, those who are household devotees, grihastha, they have certain duties and responsibilities to their household. They have responsibilities to their parents, children and to many other things. They are required to fix and resolve everything there. So for this regard, in Hari-bhakti-vilasa, it is explained that you have to follow the rules and regulations for at least one month, the month of Kartik. So another name for the month of Kartik is NiyamSeva mas. The month of Kartik is known as NiyamSeva mas and the presiding deity of this month is Kartikeshvari, Shrimati Radhika.  

What is the actual meaning of Kartika? In Indian, Vedic terms, Kartik, is Kar-tik. Kartik means one who is eager to take darshan of the Lord. Which means, all devotees are eager to take darshan of the Lord. Amongst all devotees, Shrimati Radhika is the Supreme controller. So, Kartikeshvari, Shrimati Radhika, is the presiding deity of this month – adhishtatri devata.  The presiding deity of this month is Shrimati Radhika, therefore She is known as Kartikeshvari. This month is also called Damodara mas. According to our Vaishnava philosophy, this month is known as Radha Damodara and Yashoda Damodara mas. Radha Damodara refers to Shrimati Radhika. In this lila She, Herself binds Krishna with a garland.  

Once, Krishna disappeared from the rasa dance, then all of the gopis felt pangs of separation from Him. When Krishna reappeared in front of the assembly of gopis, Shrimati Radhika bound Krishna with a flower garland. For this regard, this month is also known as Radha Damodara. But the Shrimad Bhagavatam mainly discusses Yashoda Damodara, which is called dambandhana lila. Shukadeva Goswamipada very nicely glorified about Krishna’s dambandhana lila. The beautiful pastimes of Krishna are called dambandhana lila, when mother Yashoda tied Krishna with the rope in His waist. For this regard, this month is also called Yashoda Damodara.

In the Padma Purana, Satyavrata Muni also very nicely glorified Krishna’s lila. In the Damodara Ashtakam there are eight verses glorifying Krishna’s sweet pastimes. While completely absorbed in his trance, Satyavrata Muni realised Krishna’s sweet lila and then composed this verse –

namāmīśvaraḿ sac-cid-ānanda-rūpaḿ
lasat-kuṇḍalaḿ gokule bhrājamanam

yaśodā-bhiyolūkhalād dhāvamānaḿ
parāmṛṣṭam atyantato drutya gopyā
namāmīśvaraḿ sac-cid-ānanda-rūpaḿ
lasat-kuṇḍalaḿ gokule bhrājamanam

rudantaḿ muhur netra-yugmaḿ mṛjantam
karāmbhoja-yugmena sātańka-netram
muhuḥ śvāsa-kampa-trirekhāńka-kaṇṭha-
sthita-graivaḿ dāmodaraḿ bhakti-baddham

namāmīśvaraḿ sac-cid-ānanda-rūpaḿ
lasat-kuṇḍalaḿ gokule bhrājamanam

itīdṛk sva-līlābhir ānanda-kuṇḍe
sva-ghoṣaḿ nimajjantam ākhyāpayantam
tadīyeṣita-jñeṣu bhaktair jitatvaḿ
punaḥ prematas taḿ śatāvṛtti vande

namāmīśvaraḿ sac-cid-ānanda-rūpaḿ
lasat-kuṇḍalaḿ gokule bhrājamanam

So Krishna manifested these sweet pastimes, dambandhana lila, in this month. For this regard, this month is known as Yashoda Damodara and it is also called, Damodara mas. During this month we have to listen to harikatha and we also have to visit some of the pastime places of Krishna, Krishnalilasthali.  Understand these things? In the Brhad-bhagavatamrta, according to the conversation between Lord Krishna and Narada Rishi, Sanatana Goswamipada very clearly explained this. Narada Rishi told, “Hey Prabhu. Please, give one benediction. If anybody would come to your lilasthali…”  Lilasthali means the pastimes places of Krishna. “…You must manifest the highest prema in their heart.” What is this highest premaGopi-prema. This gopi-prema will manifest in their heart. Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu appeared in this Kali-yuga and He distributed this highest prema

anarpita-carīṁ cirāt karuṇayāvatīrṇaḥ kalau
samarpayitum unnatojjvala-rasāṁ sva-bhakti-śriyam
hariḥ puraṭa-sundara-dyuti-kadamba-sandīpitaḥ

sadā hṛdaya-kandare sphuratu vaḥ śacī-nandanaḥ
(Chaitanya-charitamrita, Adi 1.4)

Rupa Goswamipada composed this verse in the Vidagdhamadhava grantha. This highest prema was not distributed by the Lord in every yuga. Vrajendra-nandana Shyamasundara Krishna, Swayamavatari Krishna, He also does not appear in the material world in every yuga. Only in the end of this Dvapara yuga does He come and at the end of Dvapara yuga, the same Krishna comes in the form of Shachinandana Gaurahari. Actually, Shachinandana Gaurahari is the combined form of Radha and Krishna. So, Shachinandana Gaurahari comes to give the highest prema. One day Gurudev told, “Nityananda Prabhu also distributes this prema.” How can Nityananda Prabhu also distribute prema? In the Chaitanya Charitamrita, Krishnadasa Kaviraja Goswami explains how Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu said, “No one can distribute vrajaprema except Me.” One aspect of Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu is He is known as the treasure of the heart of Nityananda Prabhu.  Understand? Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu is called the treasure of the heart of Nityananda Prabhu. Without the mercy of Nityananda Prabhu, no one can receive the mercy of Shachinanda Gaurahari.  So according to this logic, Nityananda Prabhu, in this way can also give prema. Without the recommendation of Nityananda Prabhu, Gaurasundara will not give you prema.  

nitayer koruna habe, braje radha-krishna pabe,
dharo-nitai-carana du’khani

(Nitai-pada-kamala, Narottama Dasa Thakura)

Narottama Dasa Thakurа very humbly glorified Nityananda Prabhu. He said, “Oh my brother, very carefully and strongly, hold on to the lotus feet of Nityananda Prabhu.” Nityananda Prabhu, He is called akhanda-gurutattva. He is non-different from Baladeva Prabhu. Baladeva Prabhu also serves Krishna in the form of Ananga Manjari. Ananga Manjari, She is the very nearest and dearest of Shrimati Radhika. Because She is Shrimati Radhika’s younger sister. Try to understand these things. There is so much love and affection between Ananga Manjari and Shrimati Radhika. 

If you go to Radha kunda there are eight corners. The eight prominent sakhiskunjas are in each of the eight corners of Radha kunda. Lalitananda-kunja, Vishakhananda-kunja, Sudevi, Rangadevi, Tungavidya, all of the eight sakhis’ kunjas are found there. But in the middle of Radha kunda, you will find Shrimati Radhika’s youngest sister, Ananga Manjari’s kunja. Her kunja’s name is Svananda-Sukhada kunja. Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakur, composed so many glorifications about Svananda-Sukhada kunja,

cintāmaṇi-maya rādhā-kuṇḍa-taṭa
taha kuñja śata śata
prabāla bidruma maya taru-latā
mukta-phale abanata

There you will find very valuable jewels, like one kind of mukta phale. So, Radha kunda is the topmost place and in the middle of Radha kunda there is one kunja. Ananga Manjari’s kunja, which is called Svananda-Sukhada kunja. In the Svananda-Sukhada kunja, Radha and Krishna come together very confidentially, only manjaris are allowed to enter that place. Even if Lalita or Vishakha want to go, they first have to take permission from the manjaris.  Radha kunda is the topmost place because on the banks of Radha-kunda, Krishna’s sweet amorous pastimes are manifested. Prapodhananda Saraswati glorified Radha kunda

Brahma, Shiva, Narada, those who are high class, exalted devotees of Lord are called mahajanas. What does mahajana mean? Mahajana refers to a very high class, exalted the devotee of Lord. In this material world, mahajana means a money center.  If you do not have any money, you go to the money center and then they will exchange your dollars into rupees.  That is called a money center. Here in the material world, that is called a mahajana. One who has money or is wealthy, gives loans to people and then he keeps their ornaments or their homes as collateral. Today, this is known as a bank loan. But before banks, people used to go to the loaner. The loaner would say, “Ok I will give you money. But you will have to give me some of your property. Give me some ornaments or some gold, then I will give you the money. And every month you have to make payments with interests.”  So generally in Indian cultures, these people are called mahajanas. But who are our spiritual mahajanas? Those who are pure devotees of the Lord.  Here, money means prema, Krishna prema. Whoever has a wealth of Krishna prema, he is called a mahajana. So according to our shastras, there are how many mahajanas?  Twelve –

svayambhur naradah sambhuh
kumarah kapilo manuh
prahlado janako bhismo
balir vaiyasakir vayam

Yama Maharaja told, “We are twelve mahajanas. Only we can give everything. Only we can give you spiritual things.” So Bhishmadev is also amongst the twelve mahajanas.  Bhishma Pitamah, Brahma, Shuka, Narada, they are called mahajanas. Sometimes, even mahajanas cannot have darshan of the lotus feet of Krishna. ‘Yadyapi samadhishu vidhir api pashyati, na tava nakhagra-marichim.’ Because sometimes Krishna manifests in their heart and sometimes He does not. Shrila Rupa Goswamipada, explains –

(kṛṣṇa) deva! bhavantaḿ vande
man-mānasa-madhukaram arpaya nija-pada-pańkaja-makarande
yadyapi samādhiṣu vidhir api paśyati na tava nakhāgra-marīcim
(kṛṣṇa) deva! bhavantaḿ vande

In this song, Rupa Goswamipada nicely wrote how very, very rare it is even for mahajanas, to have darshan of Krishna. It is not so easy.  You cannot take darshan to Him by only meditating. People are thinking, “I am meditating. Krishna will appear.” This is not possible. Once, one gopi closed her eyes and meditated. Then Krishna appeared, shook her body and said “Hey, what are you doing here?” But she kept her eyes closed and did not open them. Then Krishna shook her body again and said, “Hey! What you are doing here?” Then the gopi opened her eyes and said, “Hey Krishna, why are you disturbing me? I am meditating.” Krishna said, “Who is your worshipable deity? She then told, “I will not tell you who my worshipable deity is. I’ll maintain this one devi. So if this devi…” The word devi means goddess. “…If she will be pleased with me then I can take darshan of the Lord. Because of this I am meditating to this one goddess.” Then Krishna said, “Even if you meditate to this devi, goddess for thousands of years during thousands of lives, she can not give darshan to you.” Why not? Because everybody is afraid of Krishna’s word. They know anything Krishna’s speaks will be truth. Krishna has one shakti, i.e. perfection of words. They think, “But sometimes Lord Narayana possesses His body. So for this regard, whatever He is saying will become true.” Then that gopi became afraid. She asked, “How will I take darshan of my ishtadeva?” Krishna then told, “Not only by meditating. You have to offer some bhoga.” Offer to Govinda, offer to Krishna. Just sitting in front of Thakurji and meditating is not the proper process of meditation. What is the proper process to meditate on to the Lord? You have to first offer some foods, sweets or something. Then you can meditate on to the Lord, then Thakurji will accept; this is the nature. 

Even conditioned souls, if I only speak harikatha, everybody will not attend. But if I distribute prasad, then everybody will come, there will be many hands out. They are so pleased with the prasad, but they have no greed for the harikatha. Is this true or not? Even in our conditioned stage we have greed for prasad, but we do not have greed for harikatha. If I distribute prasad and say, “Here, take this very nice and expensive sweet.” You will just tell everyone, “Hey Maharaja is giving prasadam, very sweet prasad.” But if I only distribute ordinary prasad, maybe some will come, maybe some will not. Those who do come will be looking upstairs as like a bird. They might say, “Ok, my stomach is full, I will not collect any food today.” In the same way, there are those who come and look and think, “What type of prasad are they serving? Oh, very expensive prasad.” Will they come that time If I only distribute sugar cookies? They may say, “This is misery. We don’t need.” If I give molasses, they will come. But if I distribute good prasad like rasagulla, they ask, “More, more, more…” Even after taking maybe 1, 2 or 3 rasgullas, they will still say, “No, more, more more.” 

In the same way, Krishna told the gopi, “Hey, this is not the proper way to meditate. You have to offer some sweets. Then it must be that your presiding ishtadevi will appear here.” Because everybody is hankering to take prasad. Who does not want to take prasad? Even Krishna is hankering.  So the next day that gopi prepared many kinds of food preparations like laddu, kachori, butter, everything. She put it all in one basket in front and started to meditate. Then Krishna appeared and Krishna started to eat everything. The moment she closed her eyes, Krishna appeared and He ate all of her offerings.  Then that gopi opened her eyes and after looking asked, “Hey Krishna, today my ishtadevi, She did not give darshan to me.  She only ate the bhoga, the prasad I offered.” Then Krishna said, “This is true. But you cannot just offer only one morning and then expect to have darshan.  You must take a vow, that you will offer for at least one month. Then your ishtadevi will be pleased and She will give darshan to you.” That means Krishna is what? He is very clever. Everyday He takes what she offers and He eats.  Bolo Vrindavan bihari lal ki jai!  This is a very nice lila, a sweet lila. Bolo vrindavan bihari lal ki jai!  

What did I say? Meditiation. I told, this actually is rare, even for mahajanas. Brahma, Shiva, Narada, they are called mahajanas. Sometimes Krishna manifests His lotus feet during their trance, sometimes not. What does this mean? They pray for a sprinkle of divine love from the effulgence emanating from the toenail of Krishna. Sometimes this manifests in their heart and sometimes not. Because Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, not just an ordinary personality. It is said one just chants 16 rounds of the mahamantra and take mahaprasad and Krishna will give darshan. Chant the holy names, do bhajana and sadhana, serve guru and Krishna. When guru and Krishna are pleased, then Krishna will give darshan to you. Many shlokas state that when guru is pleased then Krishna is pleased, then Krishna will give darshan. Will Krishna appear after just one day of meditating on the Lord? No. It is very, very rare to have the darshan of Krishna, even for Brahma, Shiva, Narada. But in regards to Shrimati Radhika…it is also very, very rare to take Her darshan. So try to understand that it is even more rare to take darshan of Shrimati Radhika. It is very rare to take darshan of Krishna’s lotus feet and very, very rare to take darshan of Shrimati Radhika’s. This will make you understand exactly how rare it is to take darshan of Shrimati Radhika. No ordinary bhajana will lead to you taking darshan of the lotus feet of Shrimati Radhika. Through ordinary bhajana it is not possible. 

It is said that if you only chant 16 rounds of the holy name, then you will be happy, then Krishna will give darshan. This is not true.  If not true, then why is this said? For encouragement of baddha jivas. Baddha jivas do not want to chant 64 rounds. So for this regard, acharyas encourage in this way. They say, “Ok, you can chant 16 rounds, then you will have darshan.” But this is not the truth.  Krishna will only give darshan when you do hard austerities in chanting. All of the associates of Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu did Krishna nama seva and they were also completely detached from other material things. Vairagya, they are completely detached from the material things.  

mahāprabhura bhakta-gaṇera vairāgya pradhāna
yāhā dekhi’ prīta hana gaura-bhagavān

(Chaitanya-charitamrita, Antya 6.220)

When Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu observed the vairagya, renunciation of Rupa, Sanatana, He became very pleased. Vairagya means what? Renunciation, detachment. Another meaning of vairagya is, ‘vishesha rupena raga‘. Vishesha is deep attachment with Krishna and His lilas. There are two meanings of vairagyaVairagya means renunciation or vairagya means viraga. Vi – means ‘special, ‘raga means ‘deep attachment’, this is the other meaning of vairagya. Shrila Raghunatha Dasa Goswami very humbly glorified Shrila Sanatana Goswamipada. He told, “I don’t want to detach from material sense gratification. But Sanatana Goswami, by force caught my hair, choti and brought me on to the lotus feet of Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.” Just look at how he glorified Sanatana Goswamipada.

So returning back, it is rare for Brahma, Shiva, Narada, even Krishna Himself told, “It is very rare to attain the lotus feet of Shrimati Radhika.” In Radha-rasa-sudhanidhi, Prabhodananda Saraswatipad composed this verse –

yo brahma-rudra-suka-narada-bhisma-mukhyair
alaksito na sahasa purusasya tasya
sadyo-vasi-karana-curnam ananta saktim
tam radhika-carana-renum anusmarami

Shrimati Radhika controls Krishna just by Her smiling face and Her different kinds of activities. She controls Krishna with Her highest prema. What is Her highest prema? Shraddha, sadhu-sanga, bhajana-kriya, anartha-nivritti, nishtha, ruchi, asakti, bhava, and prema. Then sneha, mana, praṇaya, raga, anuraga, bhava, mahabhava, rudha, adhirudha, madana, mohana, then madanakya-mahabhava. Madanakya-mahabhava is the prerogative of Shrimati Radharani. It is manifested only in the heart of Shrimati Radhika. You cannot find this madanakya-mahabhava in the heart of Lalita, Vishakha or Chandravali. Krishna is only controlled by the highest prema. Everything depends on mamata. Love is defined by what? By how much you have possessiveness. ‘ananya mamata vishnau’. Ananya means being one pointed with guru and Krishna. Ananya mamata vishnau mamata prema sangata. This is the definition of prema. Love means what? Being one pointed towards the object of your possessiveness. Shrimati Radhika, She controls Krishna in this way. How is that? Her mamata. Ananya mamata vishnau to Krishna. Her mamata is never divided.

So there are three kinds of premasadharanirati, samanjasarati, and samartharati. Generally, in the heart of Kubja there is sadharanirati towards Krishna. Do you want to serve Krishna under the guidance of Kubja?  Who wants to?  Raise your hands. No one? [Gurudev laughs] Kubja’s rati is called? Sadharanirati. It is not ordinary because it also belongs to Vraja. If you go to there, just about 500 meters behind, there you will find Kubja’s place. If you want to become a maidservant of Kubja, then you go that place, it is very nice. Who wants to go there? No one?  What does Kubja mean? She has a hunch on her back.  

So now, Kubja’s rati towards Krishna is called sadharanirati. She cannot control Krishna. Now another rati is samanjasarati. This prema is found in the hearts of Rukmini and Satyabhama in Dvaraka and also in all the queens of Dvaraka. Their prema is divided amongst their sons, daughters and grandsons. As in this material world, when a married wife and husband become close, several sons and daughters will come. That means their prema is automatically what? Divided. Is this true or not? A brahmachari can give love to his guru. But when that brahmachari becomes a grihastha, then 50% of his love is going where? To his wife. Then they have one or two children. After their sons and daughters, maybe there is only 1% or even 0% of love left to offer towards guru. There will be nothing left for guru. 

In the same way, the queens of Dvaraka, Rukmini, Satyabhama, Lakshmana and others have samanjasarati. Their prema is automatically divided, this is the nature of the material world.  But in Vraja, what the gopis’ prema is called? Samartharati. This is the highest prema; they control Krishna with their love. This is because of their mamata. I have told prema depends on mamata, possessiveness. Gopis, in Vrindavan, they have mamata towards Krishna and only Krishna. They do not have anyone. They do not have husbands. They are not even attached with their own bodies. What to speak of others? Vraja-gopis are not even deeply attached with their own bodily conception. They actually have no bodily conception, dehatma buddhi.  We have dehatma buddhi, a bodily conception. Our bodily conceptions are not so easy to forget. Could you forget yourself? Could you forget your parents, wife, children, your money or your bank? This is not possible. Can you forget your credit cards? Sometimes you forget your mobile phone [Gurudev laughs]. Then another person will come and steal it. Then you will come and say, “Hey Maharaja, I need 10,000 rupees please.” No, don’t do this. 

Now you are not gopis, now you are gupis. What does gupi mean? It means you are attached with your body and you listen to your bodily conception. There are those who think they have now become a gopi, but are actually only pretending by thinking, “I am now a gopi.” Do you have no bodily conception, no shariraGopis have the highest prema because their prema has so much mamata towards Krishna. For this regard they can control Krishna. That prema is called samartharati

So coming back, Prabhodananda Saraswatipada in his grantha, wrote so many glorifications about Shrimati Radhika. Why? Because Radhika, She is our ishtadevi. You have to know about your ishtadevaIshtadeva means worshipable deity. You must know about this. Who is Shrimati Radhika? What She is doing? What are Her qualifications? You have to know these things. The simple meaning is we have to know about Radha-tattva. Because our ishtadeva is Shrimati Radhika. Shrimati Radhika loves Krishna, so we have to give respect to Krishna and we also have to know about Krishna, Krishna-tattva. This means you have to know about both Radha and Krishna. If you meditate or perform your bhajana and sadhana, people will ask who your ishtadeva is? Who is He? What are His qualifications?  What is He doing?  You have to learn these things.

ārādhyo bhagavān vrajeśa-tanayas tad-dhāma vṛṇdāvanaṁ
ramya kaścid upāsanā vraja-vadhu-varga-vīrya kalpita,
śrīmad-bhāgavatam amalaṁ purāṇaṁ premā pum-artho mahān
śrī-caitanya mahāprabhor matam idaṁ tatradaraḥ na paraḥ
(Chaitanya-manjusha)

Shrila Vishvanatha Chakravartipada composed this verse. Our ishtadeva is Vrajendra-Nandana Shyamsundara and His hladini shakti svarupini Shrimati Radhika. Shrimati Radhika is our ishtadevi. So what does this mean? Why am I saying this? Who is the presiding deity during this month of Kartik? Shrimati Radhika, Kartikeshvari. Because She is the supreme controller of this month of Kartik, She is also called Kartikeshvari. One should think, “I must go take darshan of the birth place of Krishna.”  

So what does Vraja mean?  Vraja means vrajayati, to move. One who moves from one place to another place. What does being a Vrajavasi mean? Those who move from one place to another. Since Vrajavasis’ business is cow herding, they move different places when the grass is finished. This is the thing. Sometimes they live in Nandagaon, sometimes they are in Gokul or Chatikhara. They move to different places. So for this regard they are called Vrajavasis. What does being a Vrajavasi mean? It does not mean staying in one place and building a very nice beautiful building. This is not the proper meaning of a Vrajavasi. You are saying, “Oh you are a Vrajavasi.” How is it possible that you are a Vrajavasi? What is the meaning of Vrajavasi? Vrajayate. You have to move, you have herd the cows. Everyday you are going to the market and buying the milk. So how it possible that you are a Vrajavasi? Vrajavasi means they maintain their lives by herding cows. 

This is their occupation. What is your occupation? When you arrived to India on the customs form they ask – What is your occupation? You are student, you are businessman, or a householder, many options are there. So what are the occupations of Vrajavasis? Herding cows. Which places will they go when they are herding cows? Do you live in one place? Vrajavasis means vrajayati, one who moves one place to another. This is part of cow herding. When the cows eat all of the grass in one place you must take them somewhere else. First, Nanda Maharaja was staying in Nandagaon, then after a couple of months the cows finished all of the grass. Afterwards, they moved from Nandagaon to Gokul. One day you will all go to Gokul. Then after a few months of staying in Gokul, the cows consumed all of the grass and they moved to Chatikhara. Try to understand these things. They are always traveling, going to different places. This is the occupation of herding cows.  

So this is the original understanding of the word of Vraja. Do you understand? What is the original meaning of the word Vraja? Vrajati, chalayati. One who goes from one place to another place herding cows. Because this is their occupation. So now we have established the original understanding of the word Vraja. Any good place where Nanda Baba resides with his cows, calves and associates are also included in the meaning of the word Vraja. Where ever Nanda Maharaja is staying with all his family members, that land where the cows, gopas, gopis wander is also Vraja. This particular dhama of Bhagavan, Vrajendra-Nandana Shayamasundara Shri Krishna is the birthplace of Vrajendana Hari Krishna. He is called Akhila Rasamrita murti. Krishna is called Vraja Bihari. Krishna plays in Vraja and He performs His sweet lilas in Vraja. Why?  Because Krishna is called akhila rasamrita murti.

akhila-rasāmṛta-mūrtiḥ
prasṛmara-ruci-ruddha-tārakā-pāliḥ
kalita-śyāmā-lalito
rādhā-preyān vidhur jayati

In the invocation shloka of Bhakti-rasamrita-sindhu, Rupa Goswamipada, explains it in this way.  Krishna is also known as akhila rasamrita sindhu. He is the ocean of mellows. So akhila rasamrita murti, Krishna is the embodiment of the nectar of all rasas, primary and secondary.  

There are twelve rasas, five primary and seven secondary.  Shanta, dasya, sakhya, vatsalya, madhurya, these are the five primary. The secondary rasas are hasya, adbhuta, vira, karuna, raudra, bibhatsa, bhaya. In Vraja, Krishna performs His pastimes eternally with His associates, especially with Shrimati Radhika. Because Shrimati Radhika is the embodiment of mahabhava, the essence of His hladini shakti.  Krishna performs all of His activities with His internal potency or hladini shakti, Shrimati Radhika. Krishna dances with His hladini shakti. That means Shrimati Radhika makes Krishna dance with Her pleasure potency. Her hladini shakti means her pleasure potency. The most exalted of all rasa mayi lilas, nectarian filled pastimes, is mainly the rasa lila, His pastime with His eternal associates.  In Vraja, Krishna performed many lilas. His childhood pastimes there are called bal lila. Then Krishna performed sweet lilas with His friends, sakhya lilas.  These are all very nice and beautiful. 

itthaṁ satāṁ brahma-sukhānubhūtyā
dāsyaṁ gatānāṁ para-daivatena
māyāśritānāṁ nara-dārakeṇa
sākaṁ vijahruḥ kṛta-puṇya-puñjāḥ

Shukadeva Goswamipada told how Krishna performed His sweet, sakhya lilas, with His sakhyas, His friends. Then what is His top most lila called?  The Rasa lila

jaya jayojjwala-rasa sarva-rasa-sār
parakīyā-bhāve jāhā brajete pracār

Krishna’s top most lila called the Rasa lila. Krishna performs sweet amorous pastimes with the gopis in the rasa lila. Many lilas, many sweet amorous lilas are also included in the rasa lila. Drinking honey (madhupana lila), jhulana lila or the swing lila, nauka lilas or water sporting pastimes and boat sporting pastimes.  Many kinds of lilas are also found there. As the lila when Vamshichori gopis stole Krishna’s flute. Many things are going on there. But what is the topmost lila called? The rasa lila where they are dancing singing, embracing and kissing. Bolo vrindavan bihari lal ki jai! Jai Jai Shri Radhe!

Transcriber: Sanatan das (USA)
Editors: Divya Premamayi dasi (Slovakia), Sanatan das (USA)

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