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Govinda LilamritA

Introduction

Sri Govinda-lilamrita is a lila smaran paddhati presenting Sri Chaitanya Deva’s mano'bhstha or
inner desire to distribute Vraja prema bhakti. In Bhakti-rasämrita-sindhu, Sri Rupa Goswami
advises:

Lord Vishnu (Sri Krishna) should always be remembered and never be forgotten; all shastric rules
and prohibitions are subservient to this principle. (Brs 1.2.3)

Govinda-lilamrita shows how to apply this instruction by providing us with details for remembering
Sri Govinda’s pastimes. We learn from Caitanya-caritamrita, Antya 5, that Sriman Mahaprabhu’s
formula for awarding Vraja prema centers around hearing, reciting, and remembering Sri Krishna’s
Vraja lilas. There the Lord himself states:

The heart-disease of lust will be destroyed in anyone who hears or recites with devotion the topics of
Krishna’s Rasa and other lilas with the gopis. The three modes of material nature will not affect such
a self-contented person, and he shall obtain ujjvala madhura prema bhakti. This is the ultimate
happiness, whereby one goes on constantly tasting Krishna’s incomparable sweetness. (CC 3.5.45-
47)

Thus I declare that if one hears or reads these topics, he shall achieve perfection, and being absorbed
in the lila rasa, render seva both day and night. (CC 3.5.49)

Hence, Sriman Mahaprabhu assures us that two important results occur through developing an
attachment for Vraja lila katha:

! One attains madhura prema bhakti


! One becomes detached from material sense enjoyment.

It is along these lines that Srila Kaviraj Goswami himself introduces his book in shloka 5 of the first
chapter:

Govinda-lilamrita is amazing because as one unceasingly hears, recites or contemplates it, the
fascination of one’s ears, tongue, and mind simply keep on increasing! And although these lilas are
the mahaushadha (great medicine) that cures the bhava roga (material disease), they also produce
effects that appear like a disease, namely bewilderment, blindness and a madness for prema! And
though one goes on relishing these pastimes again and again, they go on producing profuse amounts
of nectar which so soothe one’s body and heart that even the desire to sip the gods’ elixir of
immortality becomes forgotten! (GL 1.5)

Govinda- lilamrita exclusively narrates Sri Krishna’s Ashta kala lilas in Goloka Vrindavan. The
term Ashta kala means “eight time periods.” In other words, through the eight divisions of a twenty-
four hour day, Sri Krishna performs many select pastimes that make up his daily schedule. Sadhaka
bhaktas should meditate on these lilas, following the same sequence in which they unfold. Thus, at
any given time of the day, the bhakta can tune in on the specific nitya lila that Krishna is performing.
There are many benefits to this practice, but the most important is that we can relish the splendor of
Goloka lila even while living in this world, and awaken the auspicious prema that makes us eligible
to directly serve in those pastimes.
Ashta kala lila smaran is not a new process. It has been mentioned in the ancient Vedic literatures
like the Padma Purana and Sanat-kumAra-saMhitA. In the latter text, Sri Vrinda Devi describes
these pastimes to Srila Narada Muni.

In his book SmaraNa-maGgala, Sri Rupa Goswami follows this ancient tradition to establish the
antaranga sadhana for the Gaudiya sampradaya. SmaraNa-maGgala consists of ten sutras, or
nutshell verses, that briefly describe Radha Govinda’s Ashta kala lilas. When Sri Rupa observed
Krishna Das Kaviraj’s exceptional poetic prowess, he ordered and blessed him to expand the
SmaraNa-maGgala into a complete description of these pastimes. The Kaviraj followed Sri Rupa’s
order: the original ten sutras can all be found in Govinda-lilamrita, but their lila rasa has been
developed over twenty-three chapters. Hence, with the Goswamis’ blessings upon him, it is not at all
surprising that Krishna Das’s sweet narrations make one addicted to the joys of lila smaran.
Govinda- lilamrita opens with the first verse of Sri Rupa’s Smaraëa-mangala. Because this key
shloka is the guideline for the entire book, let us try here to enter into its meaning:

The sadhya (ultimate goal) of spiritual practices is prema seva to Radha’s Prana-bandhu (“life-
love”), Sri Krishna. Although such prema seva is unknown to Brahma, Shiva or Ananta, it is
available to those who follow in the Vrajavasis’ footsteps with a deep hankering. So, as I now begin
to elaborate on this system, the manasi seva performed by those who travel on the raganuga bhakti
path, I offer my prostrate pranams to Radha Krishna’s pastimes, which unfold daily in Vraja. (GL
1.3)

antaranga-sadhana = “internal spiritual pranctice.”

Owing to the parama karuna of Sri Chaitanya and his followers, this priceless gift has been made
available to the fallen people of this age.
Caitanya-caritämrita, Srila Krishna Das states:

When you realize that Krishna expects something more than vaidhi bhakti, and that by only
following rules and regulations He will not be attracted, then it is inevitable that your attraction to
perform raganuga bhakti will awaken.

The spontaneous devotion of the Vrajavasis is called ragatmika. Only the most fortunate person
hears about such devotion and becomes attracted. (2.22.147)

Smarana-sadhana has two divisions:


! lila smaran, or remembering the pastimes
! manasi seva, or engaging in service to Radha Krishna within a mentally conceived siddha
svarupa.

The first process represents the beginning stage of raganuga sadhana, the latter is for advanced
sadhakas. In his Harinama-cintamani, Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakur labels the first stage of raganuga
sadhana zravaNa-dazA, or the stage of hearing. When devotees discover their lobha for hearing
Vraja lila katha awaken, the Govinda-lilamrita is the ideal basis for their sadhana.
One should read this book as a daily practice so that the lilas may always fill the mind and mark
one’s heart. During the shravana dasha stage, it is also helpful to study rasa granthas such as Bhakti-
rasamrita and Ujjvala-nilamaNi, or other lila granthas like Dana keli-kaumudi, Vidagdha-mädhava
and Madhava-mahotsava.

Many Gaudiya mahajanas have written about the ashta-kala lila. For example, Srila Vishwanath
Chakravarti closely follows Govinda-lilamrita in his Krishna-bhavanäamrita, adding details but
without repeating.
On the other hand, Srila Kavi Karnapur sometimes matches the Govinda-lilamrita’s format and
sometimes varies the sequence in his Krishnanika-kaumudi.

The siddha mahatma, Sri Krishna Das Baba of Govardhan, also known as Dina Krishna Das, was a
junior contemporary of Vishwanath Chakravarti. Besides writing songs in Bengali like the well-
loved jaya radhe jaya krishna, jaya vrindavana and the Tulasi arati, he compiled two works on the
ashta kala lila that are very highly regarded in the Gaudiya Vaishnava world.
The first of these is Bhavana-sara-sangraha, a collection of 3100 verses taken from thirty-four
different works of the Goswamis. The second is the Gutika, in which Siddha Baba presents a
detailed guideline or manual of how to meditate on Vraja lila in manjari bhava. It is said that
Radharani herself appeared to him and ordered him to write the Gutika, which skilfully blends both
Sri Gauranga and Sri Krishna’s ashta kala lilas.

In the world of Mahajana-padAvali, the songs of the Bengali Vaishnava poets, there is no shortage
of material related to the ashta kala lila. Many of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s direct associates, or
other close associates such as Murari Gupta, Narahari Sarkar, Vasudeva Ghosh, Govinda Ghosh,
Lochan Das and Narottam Das Thakur, made immense contributions to bringing Goloka’s prema
dhana, Harinam sankirtan into the reach of the fallen people of the Kali yuga. The Rasa-tarangini
Tika also contains numerous examples taken from this rich source of nectar.

A brief description of Sriman Gaurasundar’s pastimes, has been taken from the Bhavana-sara-
sangraha and included at the beginning of each of the eight time periods. A rasa analysis has also
been provided at the end of each chapter to help

Chapter One
Nishanta Lila

(Night’s end pastimes, 3:36 a.m. to 6:00 a.m.)

Vrinda Awakens Radha and Krishna Who Are Sleeping in the Kunja

Mangalacharan (Beginning Invocation)

Verse 1
I offer my pranams unto the Lord of Vrindavan, Sri Govinda—the mandir of all pleasure, the
pleasure-giver of the Vrajavasis—whose own pleasure overflows in the association of Srimati
Radhika.

Rasa-tarangini Tika: Govinda-lilamrita’s topics are presented in this nandi shloka or opening verse.
Our Govinda is a dhira-lalita nayaka and a rasamaya-nagara. This means that he is a carefree
youthful romantic, who is overflowing with the rasa of flirtatious love dalliances in the company of
the Vraja sundaris. Herein lies Sri Bhagavan’s sweetest feature and eternal occupation.
Vishwanath Chakravarti’s nandi shloka in the Krishna-bhavanamrita describes further:

Rasamaya-nagara Shyama, and Rasamayi-nagari Radha are both expert in the practice of Cupid’s
martial arts. Hence the irrepressible wish to prove the superiority of their own talents brought about
“Ananga's war!” Then, finally, their sakhi named Fatigue invited Nidra Devi (sleep) to put an end to
their battle. (Krishna-bhavanamrita 1.3)

In other words, due to the fatigue of Kandarpa keli, Radha and Krishna fell asleep. With this
beautiful metaphor, Srila Vishwanath Chakravarti paints a vivid picture of Sri Yugala Kishor’s
mutual subjugation. This shloka is the main seed of Krishna-bhavanamrita, and it appears again at
the end of the book as well (52).

Srila Vishwanath is thus making the following interesting siddhanta:


Radha Krishna’s eightfold daily pastimes are like a jeweled japa mala, in which each lila represents
a gem-like bead. This shloka is the head bead. Thus, just as a chanter begins and ends each round of
his chanting at the mala’s head bead, the smaran of Radha Krishna’s gem-like pastimes begins, ends,
and continues on from this point. In this way, Srila Vishwanath hints that as one chants japa on his
mala, he should also focus his attention deeply on Radha Govinda’s ashta-kala lila-mala. In this
way, the Hare Krishna maha mantra and lila smaran go hand in hand.

Govinda-lilamrita, Krishna-bhavanamrita, Vidagdha-madhava, Lalita-madhava, Dana keli-


kaumudi, etc., are all termed rasa-granthas because these books deal exclusively with the nectarean
rasa of Radha Govinda’s madhura Vraja lilas. Gita-govinda is also a rasa grantha, and in its nandi
shloka Sri Jayadeva Goswami addresses his Vaishnava readers as follows:

yadi hari-smaraNe sa-rasaH mano


yadi vilAsa-kalAsu kutUhalaH
madhura-komala-kAnta-padAvalIH
zRNu tadA jayadeva-sarasvatim

If one desires to refresh his mind by remembering Sri Hari’s madhura pastimes, if one’s curiosity to
know about Sri Krishna’s prema vilasa with the Vraja gopis awakens—then, by all means read the
sweet poetry composed by Sri Jayadeva Goswami. (GG 1.3)

This simple desire and innocent curiosity are the natural assets that render Vaishnavas eligible to
appreciate the Govinda-llilamrita.
Verse 2

I offer my obeisances unto Sri Krishna Chaitanya whose activities are most amazing. He has come
to relieve the peoples’ bhava roga (material disease) with the intoxicating medicine of his own
prema-amrita!

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
This verse explains Lord Gauranga’s parama karuna feature. The nectarean prema that Sriman
Gaurasundar wishes to distribute is Vraja-prema. Our Gauranga shows the world how to attain this
topmost treasure by relishing the mellows of Vraja lila. The purpose of the Gaura avatar is two-fold:
sampling Vraja prema and giving it to others to taste.

ye l~agi' avat~ara, kahi se mãula k~aran??a


prema-rasa-niry~asa karite ~asv~adana
r~aga-m~arga bhakti loke karite prac~aran??a
rasika-Ñsekhara kr??s??n??a parama-karun??a
ei dui hetu haite icch~ara udgama

Now let me speak about the root cause for the appearanceof this avatar (Gaura):
(1) to personally taste the essence of prema rasa, and in connection with this,
(2) to propagate the path of raganuga sadhan bhakti to the devotees, advented through his highest
mercy the best relisher of rasa, Krishna, taking birth (as Gauranga) for these two reasons.
These are the two main reasons why Sri Krishna, the Chief of all rasikas (connoisseurs) and merciful
personalities, advents himself as Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. (CC 1.4.13-15)

The means to attaining Sriman Mahaprabhu’s foremost gift (Vraja prema bhakti) is specifically
mentioned in the next shloka:

Verse 3

The sadhya (ultimate goal) of spiritual practices is prema seva to Radha’s Prana-bandhu, Sri
Krishna. Although such prema seva is unknown to Brahma, Shiva and Ananta, it is available to
those who follow in the Vrajavasis’ footsteps with deep hankering. So, as I now begin to elaborate
on this system, the manasi seva performed by those who travel on the raganuga bhakti path, I offer
my prostrate pranams to Radha Krishna’s pastimes, which daily unfold in Vraja.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Here is the guideline of Govinda-lilamrita.This is the first verse of Sri Rupa Goswami’s Smarana-
mangala. Sri Rupa ordered Sri Kaviraj Goswami to write a whole book simply for the execution of
these instructions. Hence the advent of Govinda-lilamrita. This upadeshamrita forms the sadhana of
the consummate Rupanuga Vaishnava. Its execution is the sure and fast way to Sri Sri Radha
Govinda’s prema seva. Therefore one would do well to memorize this shloka, and follow its
instructions with life and soul.
Verse 4
Let us take shelter of Sri Krishna as he:
(1) enters the goshtha from the forest bowers at the end of night (nishanta);
(2 and 6) milks the cows and takes his meals in the early morning and in the evening (pratah and
sayan);
(3 and 5) sports with the sakhas while grazing the cows in the mid-morning and in the late afternoon
(purvahna and aparahna);
(7) attends various entertaining performances with his father and the Vrajavasis in the mid-evening
(pradosha);
(4 and 8 ) and midday and mid-night enacts prema- keli pastimes with Sri Radhika in the forest
bowers of Vrindavan (madhyahna and nisha).

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
In this shloka, Sri Rupa presents the basis of Ashta-kala lila smaran.
He briefly touches on the events of each of the eight praharas.
In fact, however, the day is divided into ten periods and the midday (madhyahna) and mid-night
(nisha) pastimes last two such periods each. So a normal prahara lasts two hours and twenty-four
minutes and is divided into six dandas of twenty-four minutes each, but the two exceptional periods
last twice so much.
The reason for this is that these are Krishna’s favorite times of the day when he performs the most
enjoyable pastimes with Sri Radha and her sakhis. Even so, though Govinda-lélämåta especially
focuses on Sri Sri Radha Govinda’s madhura pastimes, Srila Kaviraj Goswami also presents
beautiful narrations of Vrindavan’s other rasas—shanta, dasya, sakhya and vatsalya.

Verse 5

These nectarean pastimes of Govinda are truly amazing.


Though constantly drunk through the ears, tongue and mind,
they cause one to become thirstier and thirstier. Strange indeed.
And though they drive away the disease of material life,
they driveus blind, mad and bewildered with divine love. Strange indeed.
And though one chews on them over and over, they still produce
limitless juice, which nourishes our hearts and bodies!

Verse 6

I am not blessed with advanced intelligence, rather my mind is fickle. Moreover, I am inexpert and
unworthy, yet I am still attempting to describe the rasa from Sri Krishna’s lilamrita ocean. I expect
that the Vaishnavas, who unceasingly swim in this nectar ocean, will find my efforts laughable.

Verse 7

The Vrajavasi Vaishnavas are all very experienced, having read Vidagdha-mädhava and other
compositions by the master poet Sri Rupa Goswami. Perhaps I shall become a laughing-stock when
they see this book written by such a foolish imposter as myself.

Verse 8
The sadhus declare: “Even if Sri Bhagavan’s names, forms, qualities and pastimes are unexpertly
narrated, still the sins of those who listen shall be destroyed.” Having firm faith in their words, my
hope is rejuvenated because such sadhus shall welcome my inferior writing due to their
magnanimity. Thus do I write Sri Govinda-lilamrita.

Verse 9

Just as an oasis gives shelter to a thirsty cow in the desert, I pray that the Gokula lila descriptions
emanating from my desert-like tongue become refreshed upon reaching the cool, reservoir-like ears
of the learned Vaishnavas.

Vraja-Nishanta Lila I
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Sri Rupa Goswami’s sutra :

Verse 10

As the night ends, Sri Vrinda Devi becomes apprehensive on observing Sri Yugala Kishor’s
precarious situation. She signals for a variety of forest birds to begin chirping, and when the parrots
begin to recite selected poems, some pleasing and some piercing, Radha and Krishna rise up.
The sakhis and manjaris then enter the Divine Couple's shayan mandir with laughter and merriment.
But when Vrinda sees that everyone is forgetting the need to return quickly home, she motions to
Kakkhati, an old female monkey, who shrieks: “Jatila is coming! Jatila is coming!” Then, Sri Sri
Radha and Govinda separate in fear and haste to scurry homewards where they safely slip into their
own beds, all before the sun rises.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
This sutra summarizes the events described in Govinda-lélämåta’s first chapter, containing 117
verses.
The Vrindavan Setting

The nishanta lila takes place in Vrindavan’s most excellent location, Sri Govinda Sthali, which is a
large island caressed by the main stream of the Yamuna and its tributary. It is shaped like a
tortoise’s shell, a low, round hill crested by Radha and Govinda's breathtaking Yogapith mandir.

This enchanting temple is surrounded by four types of desire trees, namely harichandan, santanak,
mandar and parijata. As the fragrant pollen from their flowers falls to decorate the ground, swarms
of bumble bees buzz hither and thither, sounding like the humming vibration of Cupid’s bowstring.
Encircling the desire trees are four beautiful mandaps or raised platforms for sitting, with madhavi,
malati, mallika and golden juti flower vines growing from their bases. Beyond these mandaps are
four kunjas

1. Svetambuja Kunja, the white lotus bower to the north, the site of Radha Govinda’s mead-drinking
lilas.
2. Nilambuja Kunja, the blue lotus bower in the east. After dancing in the Rasa lila and enacting
their water sports in the Yamuna, Radha and Krishna come here for dressing.
3. Arunambuja Kunja, the red lotus bower in the south. This is where Radha Govinda enjoy their
late evening meals.
4. Hemambuja Kunja, the golden lotus bower in the west. This immense bower is the resting place
for all the sakhis and manjaris in Radha’s yutha. In the center of this kunja is Radha Govinda’s
jeweled shayan mandir encircled by a grove of golden banana trees. Beyond in the eight directions,
are the shayan mandirs of the Ashta-sakhis. Next there are consecutive spheres of kunjas that
progressively double in number, starting with sixteen, then thirty-two, sixty-four, and so on, wherein
the infinite numbers of gopis take rest. On the outer perimeter of Hemambuja Kunja, in each of the
four directions, Sri Vrinda Devi, Sri Vrindarika, Sri Menaka and Sri Murala Devi act as
doorkeepers. (Gutika)

Vraja-Nishanta Lila I
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Seva

In his Bengali translation of Govinda-lilamriria, Sri Yadunandan Thakur here inserts the following
comment:

In the opening sutra, the codes for the nishanta lila were presented. Now listen to its expanded
narration, which will bring you unending delight. At the end of night, Radha and Krishna are fast
asleep on a flower bed in a flower-laden kunja, fatigued from their prema keli. As they embrace,
Krishna appears like a figurine made of blue sapphire, Radha, one of pure gold. Sensing the day’s
arrival, the manjaris rise to cheerfully perform their respective duties.

The purpose of this verse is to quickly remind the Vaishnava sadhakas of the manjaris and their
seva. Srila Vishwanath Chakravarti further illuminates this aspect of the lila in his Kåñëa-
bhävanämåta:

Eager to perform their timely nishanta seva, the manjaris spontaneously rise before the night’s end.
Is it the result of long habit, or is it Nidra Devi herself who personally awakens them? As soon as
their eyes open, they look this way and that, wondering in panic, “Are we late? Have we missed the
time to begin our seva?”
Then, realizing that Rasika-nagara and Rasika-nagari are still asleep, exhausted from participating
in Cupid's festival, the manjaris quietly sit up on their beds. Everyone’s eyes are whirling like tired
bumblebees due to insufficient sleep.
Yawning, they cleverly jest with one another as if to weigh the rasa from the previous evening. “O
sakhis!” they say, “You’ve been sleeping after enjoying a night with the Nikunja Raja, but have you
had sufficient rest?” Their glances fall upon their lotus-shaped breasts, which show off the pollen-
like bruise marks left by Krishna’s fingernails. Meanwhile, some of the manjaris string flower
garlands, while others prepare pan for the upcoming pastime.
Suddenly, the cooling Malayan breeze carries Radha Krishna’s bodily aroma to their nostrils.
Malayan breezes are the southern winds. Since Malaya is the country of sandalwood, they are both
cooling and fragrant.
As it lingers there, one seva dasi arrives. “O manjaris!” she exclaims. “Come and see the youthful
couple for whom your flower malas and pan are intended. Just see how they are tightly embraced
within the kunja! O priya narma sakhis! Come and place your lotus faces next to the nikunja
mandir’s window and allow your beautiful eyes to freely roam! Having expertly performed the
dance of love, Kishora and Kishori have been honored by Nidra Devi who now joyfully embraces
them!”
The manjaris do as she says and observe how Radha and Krishna are tightly clasped in each other's
arms, but their dress, ornaments and garlands are missing. Due to the sombre light emanating from
the jeweled ghee lamps, Radha’s body appears like a soft champak flower and Krishna’s like a
delicate blue lotus. (Krishna-bhavanämrita 1.4-9)
Experiencing the Divine Couple's beauty, one manjari exclaims to another, “O sakhi, look! At first
sight this couple resembles a dark cloud garlanded by a streak of lightning! Are they bathing within
the nectar shower of their own madhurya?” Thus amazed, the manjaris conclude, “The usual custom
is that a master rewards his maidservant when she has finished her seva. But we are so fortunate that
we get our reward even before beginning to serve!” (Krishna-bhavanämrita 1.15)

Srila Chakravartipada weaves his description in Krishna-bhavanämrita in and around that of the
Govinda-lilamrita. The verses just quoted reveal an important direction that Srila Krishna Das does
not touch upon until later. Indeed, we shall find that Srila Chakravartipada’s bhäva-dhärä (line of
thinking) and deep avesha (absorption) churn the nectar found in Govinda-lilamrita and thicken its
rasa.
The gentle Malayan breezes waft slowly across the kunja, lingering like a groggy person just rising
from sleep. Kissing the newly bloomed flowers, it escorts their fragrance in every direction. The
intoxicated bumble bees that have been sleeping inside the flowers also awaken and begin buzzing
hither and thither. Hearing the bees, Sri Vrinda Devi becomes aware that nighttime is coming to an
end. She anxiously signals to the birds, whose melodious chirping will awaken Vrindavan's ishwar
and ishwari.

Vraja-Nishanta Lila II
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

The Birds Begin Chirping


Verse 11
Seeing that night has come to an end, Vrinda Devi directs the forest birds under her command to
awaken Madhusudan and his beloved Radhika.

Verse 12
Since they have surrounded the nikunja mandir for that very purpose and are just waiting silently for
her signal, despite their anxiety to serve, as soon as they receive her signal, they immediately begin
chirping enthusiastically from all directions!

Verse 13
The sharis sing in the grapevines and the shukas call from the pomegranate saplings. The mango
groves resound with the peacock’s cry, the bumble bees buzz in the flower latas, and the roosters
crow on the ground!

The Bees, Kokilas and Pigeons Resound


Verse 14
The nikunja mandir is decorated with hanging flower garlands and a bed thickly smothered in lotus
petals. The male bumble bees enter this enchanting mandir in search of pollen; their humming drone
resembles the auspicious sound of Ratipati’s (the husband of Rati Devi,” i.e., Kamadeva)
conchshell!

Verse 15
Overwhelmed with elation and intoxicated by the honey from the flowers, the delirious female bees
make their gun-gun-gun-gun buzzing. This is likened to the clanging sound of kartals (jhankriti)
made by Cupid’s wife.”

Rasa-tarangini Tika: Just as a talented musician’s instrument induces the mind and body to dance in
elation, the buzzing of the bees has the same effect on the Divine Couple. So Vrinda Devi has them
begin their intoxicating concert within the flower vines. From there they enter the vilasa mandir to
surround the flower bedstead with their sweet vibrations. Just as the sounds of the conch and kartals
are pleasing to a mandir’s devata, so is the intoxicating buzzing of the male and female bees to
Radha Madhava, the deities of the vilasa mandir.

Verse 16
The male kokilas continuously cry: ku-hü ku-hü in the fifth note. Their sound reverberates like
Cupid’s vina.

Verse 17
Seated by their drunken husbands, the female kokilas relish the soft mango buds and indistinctly
echo, ku-hü ku-hü.

Rasa-tarangini Tika: Expert in loud shrills and invoking pleasure, the kokila’s singing is so maudlin
and sweet that it seems that Cupid and his wife have directly appeared to play the vina and vipanchi
(a smaller stringed instrument or lute, usually played by women) Thus, Radha Govinda can neither
remain asleep nor sober!

Verse 18
The sudden shriek of the pigeons resounds! Has Cupid taken the form of a hyena to plunder the doe-
like patience, shyness, and dharma of the Vraja gopis? This shrieking shakes the gopis’ pride that
resembles a tiger cub!

The Calls of the Peacock and the Rooster

Verse 19
Who else but Krishna can topple Srimati Radharani’s mountain-like self-control? And who besides
Radha is the chain that can hold the intoxicated elephant Krishna? Is it to ask these questions that
the peacocks resound, “ke-ka? ke-ka?”

Rasa-tarangini Tika: The peacocks make the sound keka. The Sanskrit word ke is the masculine
interrogative pronoun, meaning “Who?” or “What man?” Here Krishna Das interprets the peacocks
cry as a question, “Who besides Krishna can topple Radha’s self-control, which is as solid as a
mountain?” Similarly, ka is the feminine interrogative pronoun, meaning “Who?” or “What
woman?” What other woman beside Radha can chain the drunken elephant to one spot? The word
chain (zRIkhalA) is also used to describe Srimati Radharani in the Gita-govinda—

kaMsArir api saMsAra-


vAsanAbaddha-zRIkhalAm
rAdhAm AdhAya hRdaye
tatyAja vraja-sundarIH

Even though he is the destroyer of the demon Kamsa, Krishna is chained to his desire to enjoy the
rasa dance, embodied in Srimati Radharani. So, taking her into his heart, he left the other Vraja
sundaris. (Géta-govinda 3.1)

In other words, Krishna is entirely dependent on Radharani, his hladini shakti, for enjoying his lilas.
The peacocks are thinking, “Radha Govinda’s mutual attraction has now become unfavorable and
their situation precarious, for they have forgotten all fear, modesty and family. So we shall awaken
them with a pleasant kirtan of their glories!”

Verse 20
Just as brahmin boys recite the Vedas in the early morning with hrasva (short), dérgha (long) and
pluta (extended) syllables, the roosters call out, “ku-ku-kuu, ku-ku-kuu!”

Rasa-tarangini Tika: Ku means inauspicious. When the roosters call ku-ku-kuu, ku-ku-kuu, they
are in effect informing the divine lovers that for two lovers who are paradhina (under their
guardians’ jurisdiction), sleeping together in a distant forest kunja at daybreak could certainly have
the most catastrophic and inauspicious consequences!
Krishna-bhavanamrita describes Radha Thakurani’s reaction to the rooster’s crowing. In her mind,
she first curses them: “O roosters! Why don’t you go to hell and wake up Yamaraja! You are unfit
to remain in my Ananda Vrindavan creating such a displeasing racket!” After a moment the roosters
stop, so Radhika thinks, “My curse must have worked. The roosters have gone to hell and morning’s
arrival has been delayed!” And so she goes on dozing in Krishna’s embrace. But then, a moment
later, the shrill cries of the roosters starts up again and Srimati reawakens with a start. “O roosters!
Please forgive me—just allow us to rest a little longer!” (Krishna-bhavanamrita, 1.21-23)
Normally, one greets a person in the morning with pleasing and auspicious words, wishing them a
nice day (suprabhatam). The roosters, however, repeatedly recite ku, which means the opposite. For
their impoliteness, Radha Thakurani speaks to them sarcastically.

Verse 21
Hearing the birds, Radha and Krishna sense the night ending; yet each is unaware that the other is
awake. Dreading the thought of having to abandon their pleasurable embrace, they keep their eyes
tightly closed and pretend to be asleep.

Verse 22
Sri Radhika’s pet shari named Manjubhashini sits in a bright golden cage in a corner of the vilasa
mandir. This learned female parrot has witnessed Radha Govinda’s most intimate pastimes
throughout the night. She begins reciting selected verses as follows:

Verse 23
”Jaya jaya Krishna Chandra, friend of Gokula! Jaya Vrindavan Nath, the ocean of rasa! Please rise
up from your flower bed, even though it is as refreshing as the moon! Awaken your beloved kanta
(Sri Radha) who is nestled in the loving shelter of your arms, exhausted by the night’s rati keli.”

Rasa-tarangini Tika: From verses 23-37, the shukas and sharis recite their poetry to awaken the
Divine Couple. These parrots can speak just like human beings. This shouldn’t seem astonishing, as
in previous lifetimes they were all vastly learned sages and munis.

Verse 24
Manjubhashini continues, “Hey Vraja Raja! The sun is swiftly rising, out of its natural cruelty to the
lovelorn Vraja kishoris! So take your beloved and go home. Quickly leave the wooded banks of the
Yamuna.

Rasa-tarangini Tika: By mentioning the wooded banks of the Yamuna, Manjubhashini warns Radha
and Govinda that the Vrajavasis could discover the two of them when they come for their early
morning Yamuna snana. Then Manjubhashini addresses Radha:

Verse 25
”Oh lotus-eyed sakhi! Oh chaste one! Your limbs are slack with fatigue from lovemaking, so there
is no fault in sleeping with your vilasa nagara in the kunj! Even so, just look at the eastern sky,
which is red with anger because, just like Chandravali’s other friends, she cannot tolerate your
happiness!”

Rasa-tarangini Tika: When Krishna spends the night with Chandravali, Radha suffers greatly. Then
it seems to Radha that the sun is taking ages to rise. On the other hand, when Radha passes a
evening with Krishna, it seems that the eastern sky becomes red with jealousy in no time at all!
Thus, Manjubhashini portrays the dawn as Radha’s adversary, like Chandravali.
This verse brings to mind the siddhanta that Radha experiences a moment in Krishna’s separation
like a yuga; but when she is with Krishna, a yuga flies by like a moment! This is one of the great
signs of madanAkhya-mahAbhAva.

Verse 26
Manjubhashini continues: “Oh, Padma-nayani (lotus-eyed) Rai! Night is over, morning has come.
The orb of the sun is approaching the horizon to begin a new day. The time has come to cast aside
the pleasure of your cooling bed of soft leaves!”

Vraja-Nishanta Lila III


From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Vichakshan’s recital

Verse 27
The shuka named Vichakshan, a most eloquent speaker with great equilibrium and depth of love for
Krishna, began to recite appealing verses full of clear, sweet and succinct sounds, fully capable of
awakening Madhava.
Verse 28
All glories, all glories, to the root of the Vrajavasis’ good fortune! O Achyuta! You are the life of
the Vraja ramanis and the lotus abode for their bee-like eyes! You increase Maharaj Nanda’s
pleasure at every moment! Hey Govinda! You bring delight to your surrendered devotees! All
glories to you!”

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Vichakshan (vicakSaNa) means clever. These names of Krishna fit the moment and subtly remind
Krishna that he should get on his way home as soon as possible. Because the Vrajavasis consider
Krishna to be their only source of good fortune, they will surely visit, come anxiously looking for
him as soon as they awaken. Similarly, the Vraja gopis all rush to Nandagram as restless honey bees
dart to the early morning’s blossoming indivaras (blue lotuses)! Then Vichakshan mentions Maharaj
Nanda, as if to ask, “What will happen if he enters your bedroom and finds you missing?” But then
he calls Krishna by his name Achyuta (“the Infallible”), implying “of course, if you move quickly
you will arrive home on time and no one will ever discover your prema lila with Srimati
Radharani.”
Vichakshana continues:

Verse 29
Hey Govinda! The lotus for all the cowherd villagers’ thirsty bee-like eyes! Morning is here!
Nandagram, where all your dear family members and superiors are, is quite far away. So hurry,
otherwise you’ll be embarrassed before them!
Verse 30
Hey Kamala-nayana! Have you noticed how Surya’s mistress, the eastern sky, has put on a red dress
on seeing that her lover, red with desire, is about to arrive after being absent for so long. Therefore,
O Krishna, now is the time to awaken here in this clandestine kunj!”

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
In the Puranas, the eastern sky is described as an independent and daring nayika (heroine), and the
sun is her dearest kanta (beloved). The unbridled loving affairs of these two sweethearts is an open
secret. Even so, though the eastern sky is unchaste, she preserves her modesty before Surya Deva by
covering her head with the red garment of the sun’s reflected rays. Vichakshan’s words are also a
subtle hint to Radha, “For a chaste woman like you, losing your reputation is more fearsome than
death!”
“O Krishna!” Vichakshan continues, “It is your duty to protect Radharani’s reputation. You are
kamala-nayana (lotus-eyed), so why are your lotus eyes not opening like the other lotuses at the first
hint of the sun’s rays?”

Verse 31
O Krishna! Fearing the sun’s appearance, the night flees with her husband, the moon! Therefore,
like them, you and your Radha should quickly leave the Yamuna’s forest banks!

Verse 32
Hey Govinda! The chakravaki birds turn one eye toward the reddening eastern sky, while the other
searches for their absent husbands. Meanwhile, the owls, who are blind in the daytime, have entered
their tree hollows in fear of their arch enemies, the crows, and have gone silent. All these signs tell
me that the sun is about to rise, so please, Krishna, wake up!”

Rasa-tarangini Tika :
By nature’s arrangement, there is a proper time and place in all forms of conjugal love. At this
moment, the chakravakis anxiously await their husbands from whom they have been separated
throughout the night. And what could be a better proof of the night’s cessation than the owls’
behavior? Attached to the darkness, they have retired to their tree hollow homes where they will
sleep throughout the day, safe from their enemies, the crows. Vichakshan thus hints to Krishna that
the right time for sharing loving pastimes with Radha is over.

1.
Vraja-Nishanta Lila IV
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Sukshmadhi Sharika’s Recital

Verse 33-34

Next the sweet-spoken female parrot named Sukshmadhi (“of fine intelligence”) steps forward.
Having memorized all that Vrinda Devi has taught her, she wears innumerable verses of fine poetry
around her neck like a locket. Intoxicated by the affection Radha has given her, she takes up the task
of trying to awaken her. Her feathers standing erect in ecstasy, she makes her poetic message dance
on the stage of her tongue.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
One of the Sanskrit words for tongue is rasajJA, or the “knower of flavors.” The implication here is
that Sukshmadhi’s is a connoisseur of the rasas of Radha Krishna lila. It is said of parrots that they
make fruit taste even sweeter by pricking them with their beaks. Here, Sukshmadhi makes the
poetry taught her by Vrinda Devi even more sweet through her subtle intelligence and knowledge of
the rasas.

Verse 35
O Vrajendra-nandana-priya! Rise quickly and head homeward before the Vrajavasis take to the
pathways to begin their daily business!

Verse 36
O Sumukhi “one with a beautiful face.” Rai! Just see how the lord of the day is peeking over the
horizon! So don’t delay—get out of bed and hurry home!

Verse 37
Hey Sakhi Radhe! Stop sleeping! Leave this forest kunja right now! Go home! Don’t be lazy! Wake
up your kanta (beloved Krishna)! Don’t give rise to public disgrace! Remember, smart people
always do what has to be done when it has to be done.”

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Due to Radha and Krishna’s mutual determination, their prema alingana (loving embrace) remains
unshaken despite the foreboding calls of numerous forest birds and the selected poetry of the shukas
and sharis. Finally, Vrinda Devi’s most learned shari, Sukshmadhi, succeeds in arousing alarm in
the hearts of the Divine Couple with a series of sharp commands. Although devoid of glitter, her
simple words are very pertinent, because fear of public disgrace is especially acute for a respectable
woman. Thus, this approach, backed by deep loving concern for Radha is the first to get some
results.
Sri Yadunandan’s padavali translation beginning with verse 21 (jaya jaya krishna-candra gokulera
bandhu…) are ideal material for pujaris to recite as they awaken Radha and Krishna in the Brahma-
muhurta. These padas are to be sung in kirtan. Verses 41-44 recited by the shuka named Daksha are
also applicable.
In Krishna-bhavanamrita, the shari named Shubha addresses Radharani as follows.

he bhAnu-nandini, prema saubhAginI,


nArI-UDAmaNi jaya

ramaNa-vadana-padma, madhu-pAne matta haiyA,


tumi nidre jAo
prabhAta samaya, e to bhAlo nAhi,
jAgo vadhUre jAgAo

tIvra-nidrA chAro, nIti anusAro,


rAkho lajjA gEhe jAo
ke zikhAbe tomA, nItira mahimA,
sabAre tumi zikhAo

Hey Vrishbhanu-nandini Radhe! All glories to you! Because of your exalted prema, you are the
most fortunate gopi and the crown-jewel of all women. Even so, if you fall asleep after drinking the
intoxicating madhu of Krishna’s mukha-aravinda (lotus face), trouble may come to you this
morning. So wake up, wake up!

Arise, young one! Give up your deep sleep and do the right thing: proceed quickly homeward to
save your reputation. Who am I to teach you what is right, for your behavior is the example for
everyone. (Krishna-bhavanamrita, 1.33-35)

In Srila Kavi Karnapur’s Krishnahnika-kaumudi, the sharikas wake up Radha as follows with the
following song:

“Hey Chandra-mukhi Rai! With the morning’s arrival, why are you still carelessly sleeping in the
lap of Vraja-pati-nandana? You shoudn’t delay a moment more in this bumblebee-laden kunja!
Have you forgotten about the unbefitting sneers and curses that your guardians may deliver?
Therefore, quickly preserve your chaste reputation and wake up.
“Hey Vilasini Radhe! Just see, by turning deep red, the eastern sky is trying to match the color of
your lotus feet. The chakravakas are swiftly returning to their mates. And look—disappointed for
not having the beauty of your moon-face—the moon is sinking below the horizon as if wishing to
end its life! Nothing you do can stop him.
“And look here, Sumukhi! Yesterday evening the manjaris who brought you to this Krishna keli-
kunja are returning. As they join together from their respective resting places, they are smiling and
coming to meet you in paramananda! Hey Sumukhi Rai! Wake up, open your eyes, and look upon
these lightning-complexioned young damsels. They’re wanting to dress and decorate you to conceal
the evidence of your surata-samara (loving rati keli battle)!” (Krishnahnika-kaumudi, 1.3-9)

Verse 38 Though Radha and Krishna now lie awake, they are still unable to abandon each other’s
amorous embrace. And although the night’s conclusion creates alarm, neither one is able to discard
the enchanting happiness of their flower bed!

Verse 39
Radharani’s nitamba (hips) lies between Krishna’s knees, and her stana-yugala (two breasts) lay
offered to his chest. Resting cheek to cheek, Radha’s arms entwine Krishna’s neck while his arms
serve as a pillow. Even though she is now awake, Radha is unable to move from this position.

1.
Vraja-Nishanta Lila V
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Verse 40
Krishna is anxious to return home, but the piercing thought of discarding Radha’s pleasurable
embrace is too painful. So he too pretends to still be asleep.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
When two or more conflicting sanchari bhavas (transitory emotions) attack the heart at the same
time, this is called bhava-shavalya. Here the eagerness for union (autsukya) and despair caused by
the necessity of returning home (vishada) create Krishna’s anguish. Although the thought of
abandoning his personal enjoyment in Radha’s amritamaya-sanga (nectar-like association) afflicts
Krishna’s heart, the pain he feels when considering Radharani’s plight is even greater.

Verse 41
As a teacher of a hundred thousand shukas, the parrot named Daksha is an expert orator of
Krishna’s pastimes. Perched at the kunja’s doorway, he begins flapping his wings in Krishna prema-
ananda and recites:

Verse 42 Oh Krishna! Quickly sneak back into your bedroom before your mother gets up and goes
there. She will be telling her maidservants, ‘O dasis! Please churn the yogurt quietly—Krishna is
still happily resting after exhausting himself by herding the cows all over the forest!’
Verse 43
Hey Govinda! Your cows like Kalindi are afflicted by their overweight, unmilked udders and are
mooing, calling for their thirsty calves. Anxiously waiting you for you to come and milk them, their
heads are raised, their eyes fixed on the path by which you enter the goshala and their ears perked up
attentively.

Verse 44
As for Bhagavati Paurnamasi Devi, she has gotten up and will soon finish her morning duties. Then
she will accompany your mother in the eagerness to have your early morning darshan. You’d better
rise quickly and get back into your own bed before she gets there!

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
The events described in shlokas 42-44 happen daily. Daksha skilfully reminds Krishna of the
affection of his mother, his cows, and the mother of his guru, Sri Paurnamasi Devi. Sri Krishna is
dutybound to these mothers, and neglect on his part will surely result in an aparadha.
Verse 45
Hearing Daksha’s words, Krishna prepares to proceed homeward. After carefully separating himself
from Radha’s embrace, however, he silently sits up on the bed.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Daksha succeeds, but due to the bhava-shavalya or confusion of emotions described above,
Krishna’s mind reels in two directions. In the end, however, Priyaji’s unadorned loveliness gets the
better of him.

Verse 46
Radha’s sakhis and manjaris have already awakened and now, together with Vrinda, they are
peeking through the nikunja mandir’s windows to relish Radha Krishna’s nishanta keli-vinoda.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
The following verses taken from Srila Kavi Karnapur’s Krishnanika-kaumudi and Krishna-
bhavanamrita briefly describe what is going on.

As Radha and Krishna’s eyelids open, they look at one another without satiation! But as they gaze at
each other’s insurmountable beauty, dizziness (ghurna), and this fills them with anguish and despair
as they become aware that soon they will be separated and this will impair this delight of reciprocal
darshan! (Krishnanika-kaumudi , 1.29)

Aho! Radha Shyamasundar’s yugala madhuri is beyond description—their enchanting tinkling


ornaments, bangles and ankle bells, the wave-like effulgence of their glistening bodies, their
scattered curled locks and their tilting necklaces and earrings—it all enhances their luminous moon-
like faces! As their lotus hands anxiously grope for their discarded apparel, Radha keli-chanda’s
lotuslotus stemsed eyes fill with amour! Aho! Is the splendor of the entire universe arising from their
limbs as the Creator offers them arati? (Krishna-bhavanamrita, 1.36-37)

Verse 47
The peahen named Sundari, her breast full of Radha prema, now suddenly abandons her husband
and swoops down from a kadamba tree to appear in the courtyard of the Divine Couple’s rati
mandir.

Verse 48
The peacock named Tandavika then follows suit and, in prideful love for Krishna, opens his tail-
feathers and joyfully dances!

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Tandavik is Krishna’s dearest peacock, and Sundari is Radha’s peahen. Once upon a time Radha
and Krishna performed the amusing pastime of marrying these two birds.

Verse 49
Meanwhile, Radharani’s pet dear Rangini leaves her husband’s company and ran frolicking from
behind the mango trees! Then after poking her head in the doorway, her soft eyes affectionately gaze
upon Radha Krishna’s mukharavinda.
Verse 50
Following Rangini is Krishna’s pet stag Suranga. Shaking off his drowsiness, he dances about for
Krishna’s pleasure and lovingly glances upon his lotus face.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Rangini’s life is Radha, and Krishna is everything to Suranga. Because of their affection for these
two animals, Radha and Krishna have arranged their marriage also. Rangini’s restless eyes first turn
towards Radha, then towards Shyama. Suranga’s glance, however, is firmly fixed on Krishna’s
beauty alone. In Krishnanika-kaumudi , a shari describes these deer when attempting to awaken
Radharani:

“Hey Chandra-mukhi! Just look! Your beautiful per deer, Rangini, is coming nearby. O doe-eyed
Radhe, why not be merciful and let your restless glance fall upon her? This will make her fulfilled
and make it possible for her to lovingly serve you. O Krishna-kante Rai! The deer are very innocent
indeed. Just see why: Rangini is thinking that your soft crimson feet are newly blossomed leaves and
so she’s trying to nibble them. And even though your manjaris repeatedly brush her away, she keeps
coming back! O Sashi-mukhi! This harini (doe) only finds joy in eating your remnants, and she
loves to sip your charanamrita. But, alas! She is sad because you won’t look at her and so her eyes
are filled with tears as she steadily gazes upon your moon face! Therefore, O Rai Kishori!
Please save this poor deer by opening your eyes just once to bestow your darshanmrita! And look
here, Radhe! Your Priya-kanta, Krishna, is amusing himself by playing with Rangini. He is
measuring her eyes with a strand of pearls, and then comparing their width with yours! Then he
declares: “Ooh! How amazing—Radha really does have doe-eyes (harinakshi)!” (Krishnanika-
kaumudi , 1.12-15)

1.
Vraja-Nishanta Lila VI
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Sri Yugala Shayana madhuri


(The beauty of Radha Krishna at rest)

Sri Yadunandan Thakur here adds the following bridge to the upcoming description:
“Seeing Radha Shyamasundar’s incomparable madhuri, the manjaris begin to describe it to each
other.”
Sri Yadunandana Thakur’s mention of the manjaris here is befitting. The joy of peeking through the
forest foliage to witness Radha Govinda’s prema keli constitutes the highest reward for Rupanuga
Vaishnavas. In Krishna-bhavanamrita, Srila Vishwanath Chakravarti also reveals the following
kathamrita of the manjaris:

One dasi exclaims to another: “Oh enchanting one! Were our Yugala Kishor inexpertly dressed by
the sakhis? Surely their clothes and ornaments were cast aside by Shringara Sakhi (“the sakhi of
erotic love”)! Just see—she has decorated them with her own love marks (rati-cihna)! So now the
beauty of Radha Krishna’s shringar is fully visible!”
Another manjari deliberates: “Hey auspicious one! I can guess the reason why Radha and Krishna’s
yellow and blue dress are missing: Krishna’s bluish bodily effulgence elegantly covers Radha’s body
and, similarly, Radha’s yellow effulgence adorns Krishna’s body. Therefore Kamadeva thought, ‘It
would surely be unbefitting and redundant to dress them again in their blue and yellow outfits!’”
The previous seva dasi continues: “Hey sakhi! When Madan Raja (Cupid) conquered Radha’s
bodily kingdom, he ordered Modesty Devi to reside in her eyes, face and breasts as their gatekeeper
in order to guard them. So why has he now gone and destroyed chased her away? Since every trace
of Modesty Devi has disappeared, she must be guilty of some grave aparadha! Or, maybe it has
nothing to do with her, and it is our unseen good fortune that has descended in order to satiate our
eyes with joy! Then again, perhaps Modesty Devi, after seeing her protectorate prosper offered it as
a gift to King Kandarpa and left on her own. Now when Radha awakens, Modesty will find in her
body the unequalled riches left behind by Cupid!” (Krishna-bhavanamrita 1.10-14)

In Krishnahnika-kaumudi, one manjari addresses another:

“Aho! Have our Priya-yugala become one? Owing to their tight embrace, I can’t tell the difference
between them! Their superb rati utsava took place last night, but has it now started up again on
Kamadeva’s request? Surely he must have thought: ‘Oh no! Radha and Krishna’s milan is coming
to an end, so I’d better do something!’ Thus, using the gem-like needles of their romancha (hairs
standing on end) and the threads of their rati ananda, Kamadeva sewed Radha and Govinda’s divine,
effulgent bodies together.” (Krishnahnika-kaumudi, 1.30-31)

Verse 51

Krishna picks up Radha and places her on his lap; she is listless due to fatigue. As Krishna ardently
gazes upon her anga madhuri, Sri Radhika pretends to be asleep.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
As described in shloka 45, Krishna separated himself from his prana-koti-priyatama (One who is
more dear than a million lives), sat up on the flower bed, and lost himself in fascination!
Understanding Radha’s slumber to be a pretense, Krishna mildly smiles. Then taking advantage of
the situation, his eyes drink in the wonderful sweetness of her bodily limbs until tears of ecstasy
come to his eyes and fall, bathing her! Knowing Krishna’s inner desire, Radha continues her feigned
sleep so that his netra utsava (festival for the eyes) can increase.

1.
Vraja-Nishanta Lila VII
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Lalita and Vishakha’s Debate

In Krishnaa-bhavanamrita, Lalita and the other sakhis arrive to join the manjaris who have been
relishing Radha Shyamasundar’s shayana sobha (beauty at rest). While peeking through the window
of the nikunja mandir, Vishakha exclaims,
“Oh sakhi Lalite! Our Radha Govinda’s bodies are never bereft of superb dress and ornaments! Just
see! Although they are unclothed, they are still covered with a radiant effulgence. Although lacking
a mani-hara (jeweled necklace)—they’re manohara (stealing to the mind) with a necklace of nail-
marks! Although their angada (arm bracelets) are missing—they’re anangada (bestowing love)!
And, even though they are niranjana-nayana (without any mascara on the eyes)—they’re nirantara-
ranjana (always pleasing) to one another! Observing these auspicious symptoms on Radha
Madhava, and on the flower bed also, I conclude that an unbounded festival of prema has taken
place here!”
Lalita remarks: “Radha and Krishna’s hair is strewn all over, yet it appears lovely. Their lips are
bruised, yet fascinating! Their chests are covered with nailmarks, but they resemble uncountable
moonbeams! Seeing the Divine Couple equally assaulted, however, my mind has become puzzled:
During Kandarpa’s battle last night, who emerged victorious?”
Vishakha answers with a grin:
“Neither has won! Just observe, the kunkum from sakhi Radha’s breasts now appears on Sri
Krishna’s lotus feet, and the red alta from the bottom of Sri Radha’s charana padma can clearly be
seen on Krishna’s forehead. Therefore, I declare—prema has scored the victory!” (Krishnaa-
bhavanamrita, 2.2-5)

1.
Vraja-Nishanta Lila VIII
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Sri Yugala Kishor Rise I

Verse 52
Radha’s face is like a blossoming svarna-padma (golden lotus), and the curling hairs falling over her
forehead resemble black bumble bees resting there. Moreover, her restless eyes could be mistaken
for darting hummingbirds. Upon viewing Radha’s stunning beauty, Krishna smiles.

Verse 53
Radharani interlocks her fingers, raises her arms, and stretches her entire body to relieve fatigue. As
she yawns, a light-ray beams from her glistening teeth. Seeing Radha in this position fascinates
Krishna !

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Because Radhika is clever, the sakhis call her Caturini Rai. In this pose, she nonchalantly shows off
her beautiful kucha yugal (pair of brests) to increase Krishna’s captivation! As her teeth are slightly
revealed, their sparkle illumines the nikunja bhavan. Thus Krishna looks on—agape!
Krishnahnika-kaumudi adds that when Radha and Krishna yawn—”a ray of peace” glistens from
their teeth. Then with the help of their bright faces, the combined effulgence acts as Sri Yugala
Kishor’s mangala arati.

Verse 54
In order to increase Krishna’s ananda, Radha sits on his lap and glances at him with tired, rolling
eyes! Her hair is slightly undone, her pushpa-mala is crushed, and her necklace of jewels dangles.
But then, along with her feigned distress and dry pouting, she shows a tender smile which reveals her
heart’s inner joy!
Verse 55
Still feeling fatigue from the previous night’s Kndarpa keli, Radha relinquishes her soft creeper-like
body unto Shyamasundar, who is dark like a tamala tree. If a streak of lightning could steadily rest
within a newly formed rain cloud, such a scene might compare to the beauty of Radha embracing
Krishna.
Verse 56
Krishna’s eyes are tired and intoxicated, his body is covered with nail marks and smeared with black
mascara, yet he smells like a fragrant lotus! Curling hairs decorate his forehead, plus mind-teasing
dolphin earrings dance over his glossy cheeks, but herein lies a cunning sweet smile! Seeing
Krishna’s face thus captivatingly displayed, padma-locana (lotus-eyed) Radha again becomes
pierced by Kamadeva’s arrows!

Verse 57
When Krishna’s glance falls over Srimati, she smiles and contracts her eyes due to shyness.
Beholding Radha’s enticing sweetness, Krishna also succumbs to the temptation for resuming
Ananga keli!

Verse 58
Krishna holds the base of Radha’s veni (braid of hair) with his left hand. Then placing his right hand
on her chin, he raises her face to kiss Radha’s lovely smiling cheeks again and again!

Verse 59
Radha slightly closes her eyes and submerges in an ananda-sagara from touching Krishna’s lips!
Yet, with restless hands, she obstructs him—uttering na na in a soft, indistinct voice! This utterance
gives great joy to the sakhis peeking through the windows.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Obtaining Krishna’s adhar-suddha-rasa (the sweet taste of his lips) satiates Shyama sohagini (the
object of Shyamasundar’s affection. Sohagini is derived from saubhagini, or “most-fortunate one”)
Radha. Yet, due to shyness and due to being a bama-nayika, she refutes Krishna to increase his
transcendental bliss! Although ashta-sattvic emotions cause Srimati’s words to falter, still her voice
defeats the madhura pitch of the vina. Aho! Simply these two syllables, nä, nä, are so captivatingly
uttered That Krishna becomes completely enthralled!
1.
Vraja-Nishanta Lila VII
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Lalita and Vishakha’s Debate

In Krishnaa-bhavanamrita, Lalita and the other sakhis arrive to join the manjaris who have been
relishing Radha Shyamasundar’s shayana sobha (beauty at rest). While peeking through the window
of the nikunja mandir, Vishakha exclaims,
“Oh sakhi Lalite! Our Radha Govinda’s bodies are never bereft of superb dress and ornaments! Just
see! Although they are unclothed, they are still covered with a radiant effulgence. Although lacking
a mani-hara (jeweled necklace)—they’re manohara (stealing to the mind) with a necklace of nail-
marks! Although their angada (arm bracelets) are missing—they’re anangada (bestowing love)!
And, even though they are niranjana-nayana (without any mascara on the eyes)—they’re nirantara-
ranjana (always pleasing) to one another! Observing these auspicious symptoms on Radha
Madhava, and on the flower bed also, I conclude that an unbounded festival of prema has taken
place here!”
Lalita remarks: “Radha and Krishna’s hair is strewn all over, yet it appears lovely. Their lips are
bruised, yet fascinating! Their chests are covered with nailmarks, but they resemble uncountable
moonbeams! Seeing the Divine Couple equally assaulted, however, my mind has become puzzled:
During Kandarpa’s battle last night, who emerged victorious?”
Vishakha answers with a grin:
“Neither has won! Just observe, the kunkum from sakhi Radha’s breasts now appears on Sri
Krishna’s lotus feet, and the red alta from the bottom of Sri Radha’s charana padma can clearly be
seen on Krishna’s forehead. Therefore, I declare—prema has scored the victory!” (Krishnaa-
bhavanamrita, 2.2-5)

Vraja-Nishanta Lila VIII


From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Sri Yugala Kishor Rise I

Verse 52
Radha’s face is like a blossoming svarna-padma (golden lotus), and the curling hairs falling over her
forehead resemble black bumble bees resting there. Moreover, her restless eyes could be mistaken
for darting hummingbirds. Upon viewing Radha’s stunning beauty, Krishna smiles.

Verse 53
Radharani interlocks her fingers, raises her arms, and stretches her entire body to relieve fatigue. As
she yawns, a light-ray beams from her glistening teeth. Seeing Radha in this position fascinates
Krishna !

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Because Radhika is clever, the sakhis call her Caturini Rai. In this pose, she nonchalantly shows off
her beautiful kucha yugal (pair of brests) to increase Krishna’s captivation! As her teeth are slightly
revealed, their sparkle illumines the nikunja bhavan. Thus Krishna looks on—agape!
Krishnahnika-kaumudi adds that when Radha and Krishna yawn—”a ray of peace” glistens from
their teeth. Then with the help of their bright faces, the combined effulgence acts as Sri Yugala
Kishor’s mangala arati.

Verse 54
In order to increase Krishna’s ananda, Radha sits on his lap and glances at him with tired, rolling
eyes! Her hair is slightly undone, her pushpa-mala is crushed, and her necklace of jewels dangles.
But then, along with her feigned distress and dry pouting, she shows a tender smile which reveals her
heart’s inner joy!
Verse 55
Still feeling fatigue from the previous night’s Kndarpa keli, Radha relinquishes her soft creeper-like
body unto Shyamasundar, who is dark like a tamala tree. If a streak of lightning could steadily rest
within a newly formed rain cloud, such a scene might compare to the beauty of Radha embracing
Krishna.

Verse 56
Krishna’s eyes are tired and intoxicated, his body is covered with nail marks and smeared with black
mascara, yet he smells like a fragrant lotus! Curling hairs decorate his forehead, plus mind-teasing
dolphin earrings dance over his glossy cheeks, but herein lies a cunning sweet smile! Seeing
Krishna’s face thus captivatingly displayed, padma-locana (lotus-eyed) Radha again becomes
pierced by Kamadeva’s arrows!

Verse 57
When Krishna’s glance falls over Srimati, she smiles and contracts her eyes due to shyness.
Beholding Radha’s enticing sweetness, Krishna also succumbs to the temptation for resuming
Ananga keli!

Verse 58
Krishna holds the base of Radha’s veni (braid of hair) with his left hand. Then placing his right hand
on her chin, he raises her face to kiss Radha’s lovely smiling cheeks again and again!

Verse 59
Radha slightly closes her eyes and submerges in an ananda-sagara from touching Krishna’s lips!
Yet, with restless hands, she obstructs him—uttering na na in a soft, indistinct voice! This utterance
gives great joy to the sakhis peeking through the windows.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Obtaining Krishna’s adhar-suddha-rasa (the sweet taste of his lips) satiates Shyama sohagini (the
object of Shyamasundar’s affection. Sohagini is derived from saubhagini, or “most-fortunate one”)
Radha. Yet, due to shyness and due to being a bama-nayika, she refutes Krishna to increase his
transcendental bliss! Although ashta-sattvic emotions cause Srimati’s words to falter, still her voice
defeats the madhura pitch of the vina. Aho! Simply these two syllables, nä, nä, are so captivatingly
uttered That Krishna becomes completely enthralled!

Vraja-Nishanta IX
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Sri Yugala Kishor Rise II

Verse 60
Hearing Radha’s repressing words, the sakhis bodies erupt with goose-bumps as they grin and
stagger forward to tease Srimati. While pushing one another forward, they exclaim: “Oh sakhi, you
go first! Oh sakhi, you go first!’ Struck with alarm seeing the approaching daylight, they enter the
nikunja mandir that is reverberating with the steady drone of intoxicated bumble bees.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Now Krishna-bhavanamrita presents a lucid account of Radha’s svadhina-bhartrika mood along
with a description of the manjaris’ seva as follows:

As the sakhis peek through the windows and enjoy the Yugala-darshan—suddenly the manjari
(stamen) of Radha Krishna’s rupa (divine beauty) appears from that festival! In other words, Radha
Krishna’s dearest maidservant, Sri Rupa Manjari, comes forward to perform the needful seva.
Taking permission from Bhanumati sakhi and others, she enters the vilasa mandir and observes:
Radha Nikunja-nagara’s dress, ornaments, makeup and flower garlands have all become either
disheveled, smeared or removed! The flower bed is indeed most amusing to behold! Taking charge,
Sri Rupa first instructs one seva dasi to set up the pillows and backrest for the Rasika yugala.
Another seva dasi is requested to cover their forms with a thin, silken cloth. Another manjari
prepares the drink called piyusha-bati to help relieve Radha and Krishna’s drowsiness.

Lajja Devi (the Goddess of Shyness) had been sleeping outside of the keli mandir. Upon hearing the
jingling ankle bells of the manjaris, however, Lajja Devi awakens, enters the mandir of Radha heart,
and (with great difficulty) severs her from Govinda’s embrace! In other words, due to hearing the
sound of the manjaris bracelets and ankle bells, Radha'’ amorous mood subsides.
Seeing Radhika Devi anxiously trying to untangle her earrings and beshora (nose ring) from
Krishna’s hair, another manjari smilingly jests: “Ohey, Rasika yugala a! When Kamadeva saw your
mutual anuraga* drawing your bodies together, he decided to shackle them in bondage! Seeing the
out come, both of your necklaces, earrings and flower malas, etc., decided to hold each other at
leash!”
Irritated by the assertion, Rai Kishori exclaims, “Hey dasis, just be quiet! I know all of you very
well!”
Unaffected by Radha’s temper, the dasi continues smiling and quickly unloosens Srimati’s
ornaments from Krishna’s body. During rati-vilasa, Radha keli-canda’s eye mascara blotted their
lips, and the moisture of their lips smeared their mascara. Sri Krishna has also rubbed the red alta
from Radha’s feet on his head. Seeing the state of affairs, a seva dasi takes a soft precious cloth
(slightly moistened with rose water) and devoutly cleans Radha and Krishna’s faces to shine like a
polished mirror.
Someone prepares tambul (pan) and slips it into their lotus mouths. Another dasi holds a multi-wick
ghee lamp and performs mangala-arati to Radha Govinda as though she were offering her life a
million times! Someone brings a jewel box containing Radha and Krishna’s ornaments, and another
manjari gently fans to remove their beads of perspiration.
Meanwhile, Radha takes up a mirror to gaze upon her lotus face. Seeing the bruise marks caused by
Krishna’s teeth, she observes, “Today Madhusudan has plundered the nectar from my
mukharavinda (lotus face)!

Charmed by such thought, Srimati is unable to remove her eyes from the mirror as she merges in
blissful samadhi! The more Radha looks upon her face, the more she considers that Krishna’s tooth
marks are sweet to behold! Smiling to herself she concludes, “The supreme beauty and sweetness of
my youth is today proven successful because my Priyatama (dearest beloved) has fully enjoyed this
rupa-amrita-madhurya!”
As Radha contemplates, Krishna’s eyes take the opportunity to relish more of her loveliness. And
feeling his glances, Radha’s happiness is boundless, as his lotus face becomes the “apple of her eye”!
Apprehending Krishna’s subjugation, Sri Radhika’s pride awakens.

Thus, still in the mood of a svadhina-bhartrika nayika, Radha addresses him as follows, “Oh hey
Vilasin (sensuous, enjoying one)! Today my superb dress and ornaments were disheveled due to
your indulging proclivities! Are you desiring to case me into an ocean of embarrassment by
displaying me like this? Why are you remaining indifferent? Quickly re-dress me before my dearest
sakhis return!”
“Hey Nirlajja Raja (King of the audacious)! You’ve become an aparadhi to your worshippable
devata, Sri Ananga.* So, without delay, skillfully re-dress me as I appeared before! Only then will
your ishta Deva forgive you!
“Take for example a pujari. He first removes the devata from the altar and after puja, the area is
cleansed and the devata placed back on the altar. If he neglects to do so after worship, he is guilty of
aparadha. And so are you! After bringing your worshippable Kamadeva from your mind’s mandir
and performing puja, you’ve nor yet cleaned the area nor replaced him back on the altar! So what
are you waiting for? Quickly take kunkum, chandan, deer musk and the rest to cover up the vilasa-
cihnas (bruise marks) on my body! Then dress and decorate me so that the sakhis won’t know what
haw happened!”

Rasika-curamani replies, “Radhe! You’re right! Ananga Deva has certainly appeared on the altar of
your bodily limbs! Therefore, I shall use the fire articles of basana (dress), bhusana (ornaments),
gandha (scent), pushpa (flower) and chandan (sandalwood paste) to fully satisfy my ishta Devata!”
Hearing Krishna’s words, Bhanumati Manjari comes forward and offers a comb. The Nagar-
shekhar* gathers Srimati’s hair and begins to comb it with utmost concentration to spare his beloved
to slightest discomfort. After tying Priyaji’s hair into a veni,* Krishna further decorates it with
malati flowers. Next he carefully anoints the borders of Sri Radhika’s beautiful eyes with an anjan-
mixture (black mascara) prepared by Ragalekha Manjari. Krishna take a pearl necklace offered by
Ruchi Manjari and affectionately places it around Rairangini’s* neck. By now, Sri Radhika Devi’s
self-esteem is aroused, and in a prideful voice she addresses Shyamasundar:
“Hey you bluffing, dressing expert! Before re-painting the attractive chandan designs that you
smeared on my breasts, why have you covered then with a pearl necklace? If the necklace is first
given, later it won’t be possible to paint the chandan designs. Therefore, your boasting among the
sakhis of being my expert dresser is but a pretention!”
Hearing Radha’s assertion, Krishna’s pride increased, and he continues to boast as follows: “O
Radhe! Your most celebrated artist is Vishakha—but just watch—I’ll paint such marvelous designs
on your breasts that even she will be stunned!”
Thus speaking, Krishna gestures to Sri Rupa, Sri Rati and Sri Lila Manjari to give the necessary
painting ingredients. And complying, the seva dasis eagerly stand ready to view Radha Krishna’s
raho lila.* But as Krishna takes up the brush, all at once he is pelted by Kamadeva’s panca-bana
(five flower arrows) *! Because Shyama-nagara’s hand incessantly shakes, the lines become
crooked. Hence, again and again, Krishna rubs his own chest over Radha’s to erase his quirky brush
strokes!
Meanwhile, the manjaris consider: “Under the guise of smearing the crooked lines on Radha’s kucha
yugal, Vidagdha-raja Shyamasundar is setting ablaze the fortress of Radha’s patience! Moreover, he
himself is smoldering in Kandarpa Raja’s kama-agni !”

But thereafter, Kamadeva heeds that Krishna’s decorations are unbefitting! Thus, by his direction,
the shringar becomes re-arranged for both partners! In other words, after removing Sri Sri Yugala
Kishor’s patience—Kandarpa keli begins, and during the mutual-tussle, Radha’s dress is transferred
to Krishnas body and visa-versa! Thus, in Cupid’s estimation, now the Yugala-shringar displays
incomparable wonder!
The manjaris viewing this lila through the keli mandir’s windows now declare: “Aha! If this
moment’s ‘fortune for the eyes’ could only last forever!” But seeing a new day arriving, they
lament, “Hay, hay! The Creator is cold-hearted, for now Radha Govinda’s prema keli is coming to a
close!”

Rasika-bhakta-curamani Srila Vishwanath Chakravartipada next advises: “Sadhaka bhaktas should


contemplate these topics to cultivate similar moods, because just as to the manjaris, this madhura-
meditation is to be worn around the neck like a precious locket.”
One noteworthy specialty of Kåñëa-bhävanämåta is that Radha Govinda’s raho lila (most
confidential pastime) appears in each of the eight periods of the day. This excerpt has included the
first.

Vraja-Nishanta X
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Verse 61
Thereafter, Sri Radhika devi sees the sakhis approaching with their beautiful faces enhanced with
wide smiles and restless roaming eyes. Then she removes herself from Krishna’s lap to increase his
ananda two fold!

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Overtaken by surprise and intoxicated in Shyama-nagara’s rasamaya sanga, Premamayi-Radha
cannot understand why are sakhis brightly smiling. But then as she looks upon each approaching
sakhi with wonder, she fathoms the reason. Thus she removes herself from Krishna’s lap.

Verse 62
Feeling embarrassed, Radha quickly takes up Krishna’s yellow chador to cover herself. Then while
sitting on Krishna’s left side, she regains her gravity and pensively glances toward the sakhis!

Verse 63
The sakhis delightedly observe: “Our unclad Rasika yugala are covered with nail marks, their lips
are bruised and they are drowsy due to the fatigue of prema keli! Moreover, their hair is scattered as
their necklaces and pushpa malas lie astrewn!” All this makes the sakhis blush!

Verse 64
The middle of the flower bed is blotted with thick blotches of Krishna’s kunkum and on either side
there are drops of Radha’s vermilion, mascara, chandan, and the red-alta from the bottom of her feet.
Hence the bed bears witness to a special kind of love sporting!

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Sri Yadunandan Thakur’s padya translation defines this special love sporting as viporit keli. At such
times Surata-rangini “the sporting mistress of kandarpa keli” Radha takes the dominating role to
satiate Krishna’s desires (up to the point of his fainting) !

Verse 65
To the sakhis, the bed, with its wilted flowers, pan stains, and smudges of various bodily ointments,
all resemble Radha, since these same symptoms appear on her body also.

Verse 66
They drink in the beauty of Krishna’s lips, which are about to utter some joking words, and seeing
Sri Radhika’s lotus face, which is lowered from shyness.

Verse 67
Knowing the sakhis’ minds and desiring to see the sweetness of Radha’s confused emotions, Krishna
openly displays his chest and says with a grin:
Verse 68
”Hey sakhis! Look! With the morning’s arrival, the star named Radha became fearful on seeing her
beloved kanta, the moon, disappearing! So, out of a desire to keep on seeing him, she scratched
hundreds of moon marks onto the canvas of the sky!”

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
The inner meaning to this last verse is, “O sakhis! Just see how Radha has scratched her beloved’s
chest, making hundreds of nail marks in her anxiety to delay his early morning departure!” And
saying this, Krishna shows everyone the marks she has made on his chest.

Verse 69
Hearing Krishna’s words and seeing the sakhis laughing, Radha’s unblemished cheeks light up like
a blooming flower. Her restless eyes align with her dancing eyebrows to catapult a crooked sidelong
glance meant to strike Krishna’s heart!

Verse 70
Radha’s eyes are slightly closed, filled with tears and red around the borders. They convey shyness,
fear, restlessness, crookedness, jealousy, anger, wonder and the thirst for amour! Submerged in
extreme rapture due to being fixed on Madhava’s lotus face, Radha’s intriguing eyes deliver
paramananda to her Nagara nilamani!

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
These passages invoke meditation. As Srila Kaviraj Goswami’s pen merges with Sri Sri Yugala
Kishor’s prema-sindhu, this bhavadhara (wave of emotions) portrays Sri Krishna’s dhira lalita
(carefree, witty and amorous lover who remains under the control of his sweethearts) personality,
and Radha as rasavati-sarvasva-shiromani (the crown jewel of his rasika consorts).
Here Radha fulfills Krishna’s most inner desire with her renowned kila-kincita bhava that includes a
bouquet of divine symptoms: By arching her back and thrusting her breasts forward, rolling her eyes
with dancing eyebrows, Srimati exhibits the alankara named helä, which reveal her amorous
intentions. Her slightly closed eyes display jealousy, the redness of her eyes show anger, while a
stream of tears implores, “Please protect me!” Pretentious dry pouting and nervousness imply fear,
and her crooked sidelong glances re-enforces a jealous pride that communicates: “Just wait! I shall
seek revenge!” In this way, as the eight symptoms of pride, desire, crying, smiling, jealousy, fear,
anger and jubilation combine, Srimati Radharani’s kila-kincita bhava blossoms to excite pleasure
within Krishna’s mind, a pleasure that surpasses the joy of conjugal union a millionfold!

Vraja-Nishanta XI
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Verse 71
Thus, as the sakhis and manjaris completely submerge within the prema sukha sagara (the joyful
ocean of prema) of Sri Sri Radha Govinda’s vilasa madhuri (sweet loving-play) the urgency of
returning home is forgotten!
Here is the means to overcome worldly attachment. By contemplating Radha Krishna’s lilas in the
footsteps of these fortune gopis, one’s family, home, friends and worldly identity are all forgotten. In
its place, a growing attachment for Sri Sri Radha Raman’s nikunja seva awakens.
Caitanya-caritämrita advises:

sei gop§?-bh~?v~?mr??te y~?½?ra lobha haya


veda-dharma-loka tyaji' se kr??s??n??e bhajaya
r~?g~?nuga-m~?rge t~?½?re bhaje yei jana
sei-jana p~?ya vraje vrajendra-nandana
vraja-lokera kona bh~?va la~? yei bhaje
bh~?va-yogya deha p~?~? kr??s??n??a p~?ya vraje

Those hwo are anxious - y~?½?ra lobha haya-


for that nectar of the ecstasy of the gopis -sei gop§?-bh~?v~?mr??te
discard -tyaji
the prescribed duties described in the vedas and the opinion of worldy people - veda-dharma-loka
to serve Krishna (as the gopis) -se kr??s??n??e bhajaya

That person who worships that (Krihsna) - yei jana bhaje t~?½?re
on the sadhana path of following the atachment-r~?g~?nuga-m~?rge ,
that person attains in Vraja -sei-jana p~?ya vraje-
the son of the King of Vraja -vrajendra-nandana-
anyone who accepts some mood - la~? yei kona bh~?va form Goloka Vr??nd~?vana -vraja-lokera
and serve (accordingly in the antascintita deha) -yei bhaje
he gets a body suitable for that loving relation -bh~?va-yogya deha
and gets also Krishna in Vraja -kr??s??n??a p~?ya vraje . (CC 2.8.220-222)

Vraja-Nishanta XII
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Vrinda’s Alarm

Verse 72
Seeing Radha Krishna sinking deeper into their lilamrita sindhu, and seeing the sakhis and manjaris
intoxicated and blind due to prema, Vrinda becomes apprehensive!

Verse 73
Thus she turns to her trained shari named Shubha, who is expert in averting the shame from her
superiors, the fear of her husband, or the ridicule that could come from the people in general if they
should be found out, and signals for her to try to alert her to the danger.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
In Krishna-bhavanamrita, Srila Chakravartipada elaborates on Vrinda’s dilemma as she thinks,
“Radha Govinda’s prema keli has lit up the Vraja kishoris’ moon faces, but they will turn pale as
soon as the moon sets. Although the Vedas compare light with knowledge and darkness with
ignorance, the opposite effect is happening in our madhura Vrindavan. For here, as the daylight
approaches, it only darken the pure hearts of the Vraja sundaris with deep anxiety. Hence, even the
Vedas can be naive about Sri Krishna’s unique Vrindavan pastimes!”

Vraja-Nishanta XIII
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Subha-sharika’s Recital I

Verse 74
Subha exclaims, “Hey lotus-eyed sakhi! You had better hurry up because Jatila will soon enter your
bedroom saying: ‘O Radhe! Abhimanyu and his servants are coming. They’re bringing the milk-
pails from the goshala. Before he arrives, quickly go and perform your morning duties!”

Rasa-tarangini Tika: Abhimanyu was born a eunuch. In order to keep this matter secret from Radha,
he spends his nights sleeping at the goshala.

Verse 75
Subha continues: “Just see, oh Innocent one! The stars are disappearing having enjoyed a romantic
night with their husband, the moon. Similarly, you should also swiftly depart from this kunja!”

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
The stars represent the wives of the moon. As they are devis who remain in the sky, no one criticizes
their loving affairs. Nevertheless, by disappearing at the opportune moment, they display the proper
etiquette for married women. With this example, Subha hints that a woman spending the evening
with a paramour should terminate such fascination upon the night’s conclusion; otherwise disgrace
surely awaits!

Verse 76
O virtuous Radhe! The mural of the sky is painted orange by the sun’s rays. People are coming onto
the main roads. So put aside your amusement and proceed homeward taking the hidden forest path.

Verse 77
Subha then turns to Krishna and says: “Hey Shyama! Are you unaware that Radha’s shashuri
(mother in law) is covered with the mud of suspicion? Furthermore, her bitter husband lives up to
his name ‘Abhimanyu’ (always angry), and her nanadini (Kutila) is a low-minded scandal monger.
As Radhika’s family members are all nasty, how can you keep her at a time like this?”

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
This verse reveals Radharani’s position. Just as a lotus resides within the mud but displays its
blooming splendor above the water, our padmini Radha lives in fear of her cruel inlaws, yet
flourishes outside of their mud-like association.
78The shari’s foreboding words churn Radha’s heart as the Mandar Mountain was churned within
the ocean of milk! Thus, as Krishna’s separation draws near, Radha’s minnow-like eyes dart this
way and that; in this condition she leaves the bed!
Rasa-tarangini Tika: Premamayi Radha feels Sri Krishna’s discomfort a million times more than her
own, and reasons: “Let my family members and superiors criticize or torture me as they like—I shall
tolerate everything. But if my Praneshwar Sri Krishna’s name be abused—that’s intolerable!”
Thus thinking, Radha’s mind and eyes whirl. When the devatas abd asuras churned the milk ocean
with the Mandara Mountain, the fish were tormented. Similarly, upon hearing Subha’s words,
Shyama gauravini (Radha whose pride rests in Krishna’s dignity) Radha’s eyes toss in waves of
anxiety as she deliberates: “If I am caught today, my in-laws may deliver such a severe punishment
that my Krishna seva will be impaired for life!”

Verse 79
As Sri Krishna notices Vrishabhanu-nandini’s restless eyes and beautiful face lighting up with fear,
he (mistakenly) covers himself with her deep blue orana and quickly rises from the flower bed.

Verse 80
Putting on each other’s garments in their hurry, Radha and Krishna hold hands and leave the
nikunja mandir!

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Sri Radhika Devi has also mistakenly covered herself with Krishna’s bright yellow chador. (See
verse 62.)

Verse 81
When Krishna leaves the kunja holding his mohan vamshi in the right hand and Priyaji’s hand with
his left, he appears like a soft rain cloud garlanded by a radiant streak of lightning!

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
In Krishna-bhavanamrita, Srila Chakravartipada adds: “When Radha comes out of the vilasa
mandir into the kunja’s courtyard, she laments, ‘Hay! The night’s brief pleasure is fleeting! Now the
long dark spell of Jatila's suppression will trample the rising creeper of my desire!”
“When the peacocks see Radha approaching with Krishna’s hand resting above her shoulder, they
mistakening think that a majestic raincloud embraced by lightning has descended to move through
the Vrindavan forest! Thus they open their tail feathers and dance, calling out, ke-kaa, ke-kaa!
Misled by the peacocks’ behavior, the sakhis and manjaris also conclude: “Surely a beautiful cloud
garlanded by lightning is moving through this forest!”

Vraja-Nishanta XIV
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

The manjaris clean the ananga's battle field

Verse 82
Now the manjaris collect the previous night’s seva paraphernalia. Someone carries a golden lota,
someone picks up a golden-handled chamara, another manjari takes a jeweled mirror, another picks
up the colorful chandan box and the jeweled pan containers, while another seva dasi takes the
sharika Manjubhashini in her golden cage. Thus the manjaris joyfully exit from the kunja bhavan,
following the Divine Couple.
Verse 83
Another manjari smilingly carries away the special kunkum canister that is shaped like a proud
Vraja ramani’s breast. It is made from ivory, studded with gold, and has a blue sapphire cap.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
With a playful smile and giggling, this rasavati manjari taunts Sri Krishna by dangling the kunkum
canister before his eyes. Her motive is to remind him of Ramani-mani Rai’s superb kucha yugala.
They increase the pride of all her maidservants.

Verse 84
One clever manjari gathers the loose pearls from the bed and wraps them in her garment. They
belong to Radha’s necklce which broke in her loving tussle with Krishna.

Verse 85
Sri Rati Manjari quickly scurries to the flower bed, retrieves a set of earrings, and then comes
outside to replace them on Srimati’s ears.

Verse 86
Sri Rupa then recovers Radhika’s kanchuli (blouse) from a corner of the flower bed and privately
returns it to her.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Once, after enjoying with Krishna, Radha forgot to cover herself with a kanchuli and Lalitaji took
the opportunity to tease her:

kAGculi chAriyA Aji bujhi tumi puruSa


sAjiyA vilAsa-vikrama matiAchile

“I see you took off your blouse like a man preparing for battle! You must want to take the male role
in order to overpower Krishna in Kandarpa’s battle!”

It is to protect Radha from this type of joking that Sri Rupa secretly returns her kanchuli, and
Srimati smiles to express her gratitude.

Verse 87
Sri Guna Manjari takes hold of the spittoon and freely distributes the prasadi pan to the sakhis.

Verse 88
Then Manjulali Manjari goes to the bed, recover the prasadi flower garlands and chandan, and exits
from the keli mandir to distribute them.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
In the previous shlokas, Srila Kaviraj Goswami directs his attention to the manjaris’ seva. Herein he
mentions the names of Sri Rupa, Sri Rati, Sri Guna and Manjulali Manjari. If we add Sri Rasa, Sri
Vilasa, Sri Labanga and Sri Kasturi Manjari—Sri Radha’s topmost group of seva dasis are formed.
These chief eight manjaris are renowned as Radha’s “Ashta Manjaris.” Just as the Ashta-sakhis
especially predominate, these Ashta Manjaris direct all of the other manjaris in lila seva. Their
identities in Gaura lila are as follows:
! Sri Rupa Manjari—Sri Rupa Goswami
! Sri Rati Manjari—Sri Raghunath Das Goswami
! Sri Labanga Manjari—Sri Sanatan Goswami
! Sri Guna Manjari—Sri Gopal Bhatta Goswami
! Sri Vilasa Manjari—Sri Jiva Goswami
! Sri Rasa Manjari—Sri Raghunath Bhatta Goswami
! Sri Manjulali Manjari—Sri Lokanath Goswami
! Sri Kasturi Manjari—Sri Krishna Das Kaviraj

At this time, Sri Prabodhananda Saraswati prays for jhru-sevä, the privilege to sweep the floor of the
kunja. Yet while rapt in the lila, he hears the following conversation:
“Oh hey! I am not the Trinavarta asura, so don’t pierce my neck with your nails! And don’t mistake
me for Putana either, so stop pinching my breast nipples!”
Thus he prays as a Vraja gopi: “Oh sakhi Radhe! While sweeping your keli mandir in the early
morning, when will I overhear the parrots repeating such rasamaya-kathä, the words that you
exchanged with your vilasi nagara!’” (Radha-rasa-sudha-nidhi, 164)

Prabodhananda Saraswati is Tungavidya Sakhi in Vraja, in his Radha-rasa-sudha-nidhi, he reveals


his intense desire to engage in Radha’s dasya-rasa.

Verse 89
The sakhis giggle, covering their mouths with their hands, seeing Radhika’s blue garment adorning
Krishna’s body and his lightning-colored pitambara wrapped around her. They exchange frolicking
glances to share their amusement.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
The sakhis wonder, “What has caused this mix-up in Radha-Shyama’s apparel?” In jest someone
declares, “Syama’s belonging are dear to Radha, as Radha’s belongings are dear to Shyama. These
garments have understood this truth and spontaneously exchanged places!”
Another sakhi disagrees, “Na, na, I think that during Radha Krishna’s prema keli, these clothers felt
neglected when they were case aside. Being jealous, they took shelter of their opposites!” In this
way, the sakhis rasamaya-katha continues.

Vers 90
The sakhis’ laughter puzzles Radha and Krishna. Thus they curiously glance at each other—and yet
again become subjugated! Hence, Sri Yugala Kishor look like painted pictures deeply merged
within a swelling ocean of bliss!

Verse 91
Just as one cannot detect milk inside a conchshell due to the matching colors, Radha was unable to
recognize her meghambara against Krishna’s cloud-like complexion. Similarly, Krishna’s pitambara
is unnoticeable against Srimati’s golden bodily effulgence.

Krishna’s garment is pitambara, “bright yellow cloth,” and Radha’s cloth is meghambara, “cloth the
color of a deep blue cloud".
Vraja-Nishanta XV
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

The sinful sun

Verse 92
Lalita is angry with the newly risen sun for spoiling Radha Krishna’s enjoyment. Thus she insults
Surya Deva:
Verse 93
“Hey Radhe, just look! Even though the sun became a leper for upsetting the amorous pastimes of
every romantic couple, he still hasn’t given up his sinful ways! Therefore, the sages are certainly
right when they declare that it is almost impossible to change one’s ways!”

Verse 94
Nodding with a grin, Sri Vrishabhanu-nandinis’s eyes turn red with anger for the interruption of her
prema keli with Krishna. Nevertheless, remaining calm, she answers Lalita with a soft smile:
95“Sakhi, although the sun lost its legs when he set in the West, he has returned in a mere flash to
repeat his sinful deed! Just consider, if he had legs, even the brief night wouldn’t exist!”

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Srimati Radharani cannot tolerate the lack of consideration for the precendence of love. In this
regard, the sun has neither daya (mercy), nor rasa-bodha (discernment in the matter of
transcendental mellows). Hence, his two legs have melted away as if from leprosy!

Vraja-Nishanta XVI
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

khandita-bhava and mana lila

Verse 96

Inspired by the early morning’s charm and intoxicated by Radha’s kathamrita, Krishna forgets once
again the impending need to return home and exclaims,

Verse 97
“Hey Priya! Just as a young girl’s face turns red with anger seeing her boyfriend’s affairs with
another damsel, the sun’s wife, the eastern sky, is red with jealousy on seeing the nail marks of
another sweetheart decorating her husband when he returns in the morning!”

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Vrindavan’s red sky reawakens the sweet portrait of Srimati Radharani’s khandita-bhava and mana
lila in Krishna’s memory. Thus to re-taste these mellows by seeing Priyaji’s reaction, Krishna
cleverly reminds her of these moments by using the example of the sun’s wife, the eastern sky.
In Ujjvala-nélamani (5.85), Sri Rupa describes a khandita nayika as follows:
“A heroine who spends the entire night anxiously waiting in her beloved’s absence, who sees him
approaching in the morning bearing the love marks of another damsel is called khandita. Such a
nayika displays anger, heavy breathing and silence.”
This happens occasionally to Radha when she becomes firey angry after being stood up by Krishna.
Let’s follow an example of what happens when Radharani discovers Krishna’s cheating propensity:
One evening, a sanketa or meeting place is set for Radha’s milan with Krishna. In great expectation,
Srimati enters the sanketa kunja and begins preparing for Krishna’s arrival. As Shyamasundar
proceeds towards the kunja, however, Chandravali’s sakhis intercept him and takes him to her for an
evening of pleasure. Thus Krishna’s promise to Radha is broken. The next morning, however,
Krishna arrives at the door of Radha’s kunja feeling guilty for his grave aparadha. But as soon as
Priyaji glances towards him from the corner of her eye, she understands everything! She is instantly
pained, jealous and angry—her heart is completely shattered! After taking great risk and casting
everything aside to meet Krishna in the dead of night, the rushing river of her heart’s yearning
anuraga comes to a halt!
The Mahajanas say:

premera sadAi abhimAna


preme cAi Sola-AnA prANa

Prema always carries pride, for in prema, one demands the beloved’s full attention.

Prema doesn’t compromise for give and take. It cannot fathom logical reasoning, nor does it wait for
predestination. Similarly, sense of duty, etiquette or makeshift politeness find no place next to
prema.

svarã?pa kahe, — premavat§?ra ei ta' svabh~?va


k~?ntera aud~?sya-leÑ?e haya krodha-bh~?va

Svarupa Damodar said, “It is the nature of a woman in love to become angry as soon as she sees
even the slightest indifference in her lover.” (CC 2.14.127)

Srimati’s suspicion of her Prana-vallabha’s eka-niSThA-prema (“one-pointed love”) causes the


obstruction. Take for an example a dam: if it is suddenly placed within a raging river during the
rainy season, it cannot stop the current because the force of the water is insurmountable. Instead, the
water comes over the banks to create a flood. Similarly, when Radha’s irrepressible desire to meet
Krishna is blocked due to his misbehavior, her rushing river of Shyama anuraga doesn’t stop, but
overflows instead!
This condition is called mana, or jealous loving anger. As the mana rasa of Sri Vrindavan is an
incredible phenomenon, Sriman Mahaprabhu states,
“The Vraja gopis’ mana is a reservoir of transcendental mellows” (vraja gopIr mAna hoy raser
nidAna, CC 2.14.138).
In the present situation, Radha becomes dhIrAdhIrA to address Krishna with crooked sobriety:

eso eso bandhu, karuNAr sindhu


rajani goAile bhAle
AmAre chAriyA, Ana sukha peye
bhAlo to sukhete chile ?
kAndiyA jAminI, pohAila Ami
tumi to sukhete chile?

Welcome, welcome, my friend! You’re an ocean of mercy! After leaving me, it’s nice that you
found pleasure elsewhere. Did you pass your evening well? Although I spent the whole night crying,
but you must surely have been happy with her. (Chandi Das)

As Krishna comes forward to apologize, Srimati’s tone changes—she rebukes him as follows:

chuio nA, chuio nA, bandhu oikhAne thAko


mukura loiyA cAnda mukha-khAni dekho
nayaner kajor, bayane legeche, kAlo upore kAlo
prabhAte uDhiyA, o mukha dekhinu, din jAbe Aja bhAlo

“Don’t touch me, nagara, don’t touch me! Stay where you are! Take a mirror and look at your
moon-face; it’s just covered in the eye mascara of your girlfriend—black on black. How auspicious
to get your darshan so soon after rising. My day is sure to go well!”

Krishna is caught off guard! So trying to conceal his offense, he pretends to be faultless. But after all
attempts fail, Srimati explicitly replies,
“I’ve heard from others that you’re flirtatious. But today I am getting to see it with my own eyes!
So, take my pranams from a distance. I understand, you belong to someone else! For your pleasure,
I threw away my patience, pride, dharma, home, family and everything else! Then, in the darkness
of night, I entered this forest hoping to find you. But, after forgetting me, where were you? From a
distance, I offer a million obeisances to your feet. I understand it all now—you’re not mine!”

Saying this, Srimati covers her head, turns her back to Krishna, and begins crying! Vowing to never
look upon his face again, Srimati’s mana becomes durjaya, extremely difficult to overcome. In
Krishna’s separation. Radha would chant Shyama’s name to relieve her pain, but now, as the “life of
her life” Prana Govinda falls at Radha’s feet to offer hundreds of appeasing words, she defends her
gravity with the heavy weight of durjaya mana—the tongue that continuously utters Krishna’s
names is silent!
In GIta-govinda, this tender moment is lucidly described. There, the parama rasika Vaishnava kavi,
Sri Jayadeva Goswami, has achieved immortal acclaim, having recorded Sri Govinda’s heart-
rending words meant to appease Srimati Radharani’s durjaya mana. That excerpt runs as follows:

“O Priya! If you speak just a few words, the bright glimpse of your teeth will overcome the dark fear
of my heart! And the effulgence of your moon-like face is causing my chakora eyes to seek the
nectar of your lips. Oh delicate one, please discard your ill-founded mana! Please relieve my
suffering by the touch of your sweet lips!
“O Radhe, your teeth are beautiful. If you’re angry with me—please lance me with your eyes,
strangle me with your arms, and bite me with your teeth, or do whatever else that comes to your
mind!
“You’re the ornament of my body, the life of my life, and the jewel that surfaces from the ocean of
my existence! The only desire left in my heart is to see you reciprocate with me!
“Hey slender one! Although your eyes are like the blue lotus, today, due to anger, they resemble a
red one. If you kindly use those eyes to pelt me with Kamadeva’s flower arrows, then they will be
refreshed with newer and newer charm!
“O Priya! Let a necklace of pearls dangle from your jug-like breasts to decorate your heart. And the
enchanting sound of the small bells strung around your hips proclaim the birth of Cupid!
“Ayi, sweet-spoken one! Just order me once, I shall carefully take your graceful feet, which are
lovelier than a crimson rose and which delight my heart, and decorate them with bright red alta !
“Your delicate feet will fulfill all of my desires. Oh Priya! Kindly place them as a decoration on my
head! I’m burning in the flames of Kamadeva’s bonfire. Please relieve my suffering by the touch of
your tender lotus feet!
“Oh delicate-one, please discard your ill-founded mana. At the mere sight of you, the fire of kama is
scorching my mind! Kindly relieve my suffering by the touch of your sweet lips!” (GIta-govinda,
10.2-8 )

At the time of composing these verses, Sri Jayadeva Goswami became perplexed. As he wrote,
smara garala-kandanam, he thought to himself, “Would Krishna really beg Radharani to place her
lotus feet upon his head? Indeed, this is no small matter; how can I write such a thing? Yet, if I do
not write these lines, Srimati Radharani’s exceptional standard of prema will remain unknown.”
Even so, Sri Jayadeva couldn’t gather the courage to finish the verse.
In this frame of mind, he went to bathe in the Ajaya River. But meanwhile, his worshipable devata,
Sri Madhavaji, came to his desk, picked up Jayadeva’s pen and finished the verse: dehi pda-
pallavam udäram. Thus we learn about Krishna’s zeal to disclose just how complete is his
subjugation to Srimati Radharani, for he wrote with his own hand, “O Priya, kindly place your
reddish lotus feet upon my head!”

This is the charming feature of Krishna’s madhurya: Who could imagine that the Supreme Lord,
whose lotus feet are nor seen in meditation even by great sages and yogis, has gone so far as to fall at
the feet of a young cowherd girl—imploring her to place her feet upon his head! Gaudiya
Vaishnavas can appreciate it, however: here is our worshipable Bhagavan, the aparadhi lampata,
whose tears of repentance wash Priyaji’s charana kamala (lotus feet)!
Sadhakas performing smaran sadhana recall Sri Radha’s mana bhanjan lila at this time.

Vraja-Nishanta XVI
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Krishna's speach

Verse 98“
Just look! The sun’s proud mistress, the lotus, addresses the lily: ‘Your husband the moon is the
chief of the brahmin community, the destroyer of peoples’ sins, and peaceful by nature. But after
drinking the varuni wine of the western sky, he was dispossessed of his caste!’ Seeing the lotus
laughing, the lilies are embarrassed and close their petals.”

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
This verse is based on a number of puns. Dvijeça means both the moon and the best of the twice
born. The moon is known as dvija because it is reborn each month after disappearing completely on
the dark moon night. And just as a brahmin rids the community of its sins through his own holy
behavior and example, the moon destroys the darkness of the night. The word tamas means both sin
and darkness. The god of the West is Varuna, but Varuna’s daughter Varuni is the goddess of wine.
And finally, just as a brahmin is considered fallen if he drinks alcohol, the moon is about to fall over
the horizon and disappear. Normally, the night lilies close their petals when dawn comes, but here,
Krishna is joking that the real reason for closing their petals is their embarrassment at being mocked
by the lotus flowers, who are the beloved of the sun and open their petals with its rising.

Verse 99“
O Radhe! As the daylight destroys the darkness, the kokilas think as follows: ‘Because we are also
black like the night, perhaps the daylight will destroy us too!” Thus they anxiously call for their
friend, the dark-moon night of Amavasya, by shrieking kuhü kuhü. The kokilas are thinking, “If the
moonless night comes, then Rahu will cover both the sun and the moon to protect us!”

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
The word kuhü, which is the sound made by the kokilas, is also a name for the dark-moon night,
Amavasya.
This example also hints at another intimate lila: Although the kokilas mistake the sun and the moon
for enemies and call to sentence their punishment, still their sweet voices invoke intoxicating bliss.
Similarly, Krishna reminds Radhika, “Even when you consider me an aparadhi and order your
sakhis to ruthlessly escort me out of the kunja, still the sound of your voice is more beautiful to me
than that of the kokilas and delivers unceasing joy!”
Sri Krishna says in Ð?r§? Caitanya Carit~?mr??ta }?di 4.26

priy~? yadi m~?na kari' karaye bhartsana


veda-stuti haite hare sei mora mana

When my Priya, Sri Radha, chastizes me in her loving anger, then her words steal my mind as no
recital of Vedic prayers can!

Verse 100
Krishna continues: “O Priye! The cooing of the she-pigeons appears to be the sound of the forest
moaning ecstatically in the arms of her husband, the spring season.”

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Krishna wishes to tell Srimati that the pigeons’ cooing reminds him of the ecstatic pleasure he
experiences while hearing her madhura moaning at the height of their rati keli.

Verse 101
“Hey Chandramukhi! Look how this restless male bee, marked with yellow pollen after playing in
the lilies all night, is still so thirsty for honey that he is following the female bee, who spent the night
trapped inside a lotus flower and is only now coming out as the flower’s petals spread at the hint of
daylight.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Here Krishna again reminds Srimati Radhika of her mana lila with the lady bee’s example: “Hey
Radhe! When a young girl sees her boyfriend after he has enjoyed another girl, she becomes jealous
to preserve her rasa-marydä, the esteem her love deserves. I’m quite fond of this rasa-maryädä, for I
derive great pleasure in seeing it displayed. O Radhe! In your prema dham, Sri Vrindavan, even the
birds and bees are endowed with this pride. Just see: while this female bee was trapped the whole
night inside a lotus, her lover spent his time enjoying the lily’s pollen. Now as he appears before her
covered with yellow pollen, the lady bee chastizes him! Seeing her jealousy, I’m diving into an
ocean of bliss reminded of your beautiful moon-face when it becomes contorted with mana!”

Verse 102
“Fearing her husband’s delay, the female chakravaka ecstatically kisses the raktotpala, red lotus,
that is even redder in the early morning’s sunrays.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Krishna continues: “O Radhe, how enchanting! Here’s another incident which causes my heart to
dance as I remember your lila of mistakingly embracing a tamal tree! Just see, as the red sunrays fall
upon the red lotus increasing its brightness, a chakravaki bird mistakes it for her husband and
ecstatically kissed it! Isn’t it amazing how prema causes blindness!”

Verse 103
“O sweet-spoken one! Look here, the swan named Kalasvana is approaching the bank of the river.
He’s ecstatically flapping his wings and leaving his mate, even though she wants to make love with
him! 104And just see, Kalasvana’s wife Tundikeri clasps a lotus stem in her mouth and gazes upon
your lotus face. She’s swiftly swimming behind her husband making a sweet quacking sound!

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
As Kalamsvana is Krishna’s dearest swan and Tundikeri is most dear to Radha, the Divine Couple
have arranged their marriage. Krishna remarks, “O Radhe, just see how much these swans love us!
At the mere sight of us, they’ve discarded their own love-making to come near to us!”

Verse 105
“Oh Priya! The Malayan breezes have merged with the fresh mountain air to carry the fragrance of
the lotus and teach the forest latas to dance. This breeze soothes everyone’s fatigue, but it especially
acts to relieve the perspiration of loving couples engaged in prema keli!”

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Rasika shekhar continues: “Oh Priye! Why only the birds and the animals—even the trees, the
vines, the air and the water of madhura-Vrindavan share your unconditional maha-prema! Just
observe the selfless love of the southern breezes! Acting as the guru for the young maiden-like forest
vines, it teaches them the art of dancing. It also carries the cooling moisture form the Yamuna to
relieve the perspiration of those nayikas (especially you, Radha) who engage in Ananga keli. Seeing
the wind’s amazing prema seva, I praise its good fortune!”

Vraja-Nishanta XVII
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.
Radha and Krishna separte eachother

Verse 106
In this way, as Sri Krishna exchanges madhura rasamaya katha with Radha and the sakhis, everyone
forgets once again the pressing need to return home.

Verse 107
Thus Vrinda Devi anxiously signals to an elderly female monkey named Kakkhati.

Verse 108
Understanding what to do, Kakkhati suddenly shrieks from the treetops, “Praised by the sadhus, the
yogini of morning and sunset—‘Jatila’—is swiftly approaching with her matted locks and attired in
saffron garb!”

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
The actual meaning of the riddle is: The newly arrived sun is coming to spread its light-rays which
are compared to jaTilA, a yogini with long matted hair, known as jaTA.

Verse 109
When Vraja’s mangala svarupa (the reservoir of auspiciousness), Sri Radhe-Shyama, suddenly
hears the name of Jatila, which means “ill-tempered by nature,” fear and panic overtake them!
Although still anxious for prema vilasa, they quickly exit from the kunja!

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Let’s return to Krishna-bhavanamrita to follow Srila Chakravartipada’s description: Without the
protection of the stately king of night, Radha’s arch-enemy, the sun, begins to torture her and the
Vraja sundaris. Seeing a stark tree trunk without foliage, the gopis panic, thinking—here’s Jatila! In
fact, due to intense fear, wherever their eyes chance to fall, they imagine that Jatila is approaching
from that direction!
Although Krishna proceeds along placing his arm on Radhika’s shoulder, still Madan Raja, Cupid,
is unable to pierce them with his stock of arrows. And what’s the reason? In Kandarpa’s kingdom,
everyone knows that when Padmini bandhu (a name for the sun, the friend or lover of the lotus
flowers) rises, the lotuses become rejuvenated.
But today as he rises in the sky, the Vraja padminis, Radha and her sakhis, become frantic! Seeing
their plight, Madan Raja became confused and thought: “A revolution must be taking place within
my kingdom!” Thus being distracted, he didn’t take up his bow. Otherwise, Cupid would surely
have pierced Sri Yugal Kishor with his flower arrows at this moment also!
Radha and Shyamasundar embrace as they moved through the nikunja’s courtyard, but upon
reaching the crossroad to Vraja, Sri Krishna suddenly removes his arm from Srimati’s shoulder.
Radha frantically realizes, “Protected within this kunja by my bodyguards of elation, I’ve enjoyed
the maha-nidhi (great jewel) of Madhava’s embrace! But hay! Now I am unprotected, and the dacoit
named panic is forcefully plundering my treasures!” Seeing this tragedy, the sakhis and manjaris
burst into tears and loudly cry in despair! (Krishna-bhavanamrita, 2.67-70)

Verse 110
Upon hearing Jatila’s name, Radha and Krishna become so afraid that they separate. Seeing them
fleeing on separate pathways with their dangling ornaments, loosely falling garments, and hair cast
astrewn—the sakhis become bewildered and hide!

Rasa-tarangini Tika: Continuing from Krishna-bhavanamrita:

As Radha and Krishna traverse different paths, viraha turns their moon-like faces pale. Hence it’s
quite astonishing that the vanishing stars could make two moons fade—for this is unheard of! No
one becomes depressed upon receiving a valuable gem. But even though Radha and Krishna have
each other’s hridaya mani (“the heart’s jewel”, i.e., prema) their mutual separation causes grief.
Therefore, prema’s amazing influence arranges a direct reunion! In other words, due to intense
prema, a sphurti of the beloved manifests, and union within separation becomes possible. (Krishna-
bhavanamrita 2.72)

At this point, Krishnahnika-kaumudi contains the description of an interesting lila. As Radhika and
Krishna Chandra swiftly traverse the path, their fearful eyes scan every direction to make sure that
no one is watching. Yet their thirst for rati keli remains ever unabated! Thus taking the help of their
own hladini shakti and their deep mutual anuraga, tribhuvana-manohari (enchanting to the three
worlds) Sri Yugala Kishor perform rati vihara right on the pathway! And hence the sakhis and
manjaris experience complete nayanananda (ecstasy for the eyes). After the Surata-yajna, Radha and
Krishna take a Yamuna snana, which signifies the last function of Rati’s evening sacrifice.
(Krishnahnika-kaumudi 1.43-44)
It is noteworthy that when Radha stays in Javat, she remains with Krishna as far as kadamba-khandi
before returning home. And during her stay at Varshana, their parting takes place at Dhuman Vana.

Vraja-Nishanta XVIII
From 3:36 to 6:00 a.m.

Radha and Krishna's pangs of separation

Verse 111
After leaving Radha, Krishna feels melanchoy and struggles anxiously along, watching in every
direction. Chandravali’s sakhis lie in waiting on the left, and the senior gopa-community are ahead.
Krishna anticipates Jatila’s arrival from the West, and his eyes look back to Radha who fearfully
proceeds homeward in the southern direction.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Krishna surmises: “Perhaps it was jealous Chandravali who had informed Jatila today. Therefore he
fears Chandravali’s wrath and cautiously tries to avoid meeting her. Krishna also reflects: “Hearing
Kakkhati’s foreboding warning, we’ve gone deep into the forest to side-step Jatila. Although, by
now, she must have entered our kunja from the Yamuna pathway. Then after having not found us
there, surely she must be following from behind and waving her stick! Is my nitambini Radha still
safe? Was she detected by adverse persons? Or could she have fallen unconscious from the severe
pangs of my separation?” Such thoughts occupy Krishna’s mind as his eyes conscientiously look
back towards Radha.

Krishna-bhavanamrita describes: “As Madan-mohan returns alone to Vraja, the female form of
distress tightly embraces him to render him paralyzed. In other words, due to the intolerable pain of
Radha’s separation Krishna is unable to move, and hot tears stream from his eyes!” (Krishna-
bhavanamrita, 2.73)

Verse 112
In fear and palpitation, Ishwari-Radha thinks that Jatila is close behind! Adding to the difficulty are
Radha’s large breasts and broad nitamba which impair her ability to move quickly. Nevertheless,
using one hand to grasp her dropping garment and the other to clasp her open locks of hair, Srimati
scurries towards Vraja—as quickly as she can!
Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Krishna-bhavanamrita, adds: As Krishna is afflicted—so is Radha! She feels Krishna viraha like a
plague of bruises covering her entire body! At every step, she nearly trips, even though helped by a
sakhi. Speaking to her attendants, Radha exclaims, “I’m being tortured by the excruciating pain of
my hridaya-nath’s separation! So why are you escorting me home? Is this befitting? Cruel Fate has
stolen my prana-nath! But I can’t fathom why you sakhis, who are more dear than my life, have
turned against me. Please don’t throw me back into the dark well of Jatila’s samsara! Hay! Is there
no one to give me shelter?”
Although passing the whole night enjoying Krishna’s amritamaya sanga, still due to extreme
anuraga, Radha considers that she has been deprived of Krishna’s association! Thus she addresses
Lalita, “Oh sakhi! Didn’t you promise: ‘Radhe, come with me, I shall bathe you in the nectarean
ocean of Sri Krishna’s anga sanga!’ Hay! Why did you entice me with such false assurance? Just a
moment ago we left home—now we’re returning so quickly? Hey priya sakhi! Why didn’t you
bathe me in that amrita sagara? Did I commit some offense?
“Oh Lalite! I just saw the sun setting a moment ago, but now it’s rising on the eastern horizon—has
the night ceased to exist? Hey prana sakhi! My deprived ears couldn’t hear Krishna’s wonderful
kathamrita, my lips couldn’t taste the sweetness of his adharamrita, and my eyes couldn’t drink the
sweetness of his rupamrita; therefore, my ears, lips and eyes have been cursed!”
Lalita answers, “O Radhe, for the entire night you studied yoga with Krishna according to the
process of transgressing the Veda religious regulations. That is called the nirveda-paddhati. And
now, during viyoga or separation, you’re still following the nirveda (distress) process by cursing
your misfortune. During yoga, you tasted Krishna’s kathamrita, adharamrita, and rupamrita, but
now in viyoga, you’re drinking kalakuta poison!” Being obsessed, Bhagavati Radha is unable to
comprehend Sri Lalita’s words. (Kåñëa-bhävanämåta, 2.74-80)

Verse 113
To safely escort Radha, Sri Rupa Manjari lifts her into her mind’s palaquin while her eyes act like a
protective curtain to shelter Swaminiji from the view of others. Out of fear, her ash-colored eyes
flicker while scanning the pathway ahead!

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Just as one riding in a palaquin has to submit to the persons carrying it, Sri Radha proceeds along
depending on Sri Rupa Manjari’s watchful guidance.

Verse 114
When a king walks down the road, his bodyguards precede him to clear the pathway. Similarly, Sri
Rati Manjari’s eyes become like spears to ward off undesirable persons who could interfere with
Srimati's secret journey.

Verse 115
Reaching their respective homes, Radha and Krishna nervously glance towards the doors of their
elders. Then, with a sigh of relief, they tiptoe to their own bedroom chambers and their fear subsides.
Thus, in weariness and anguish, Sri Sri Yugala Kishor at last fall asleep in their own beds.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
Their weariness comes from spending most of the night awake. Anguish results from being separated
from the beloved.

Verse 116
In every yuga, the Creator (Maha-Vishnu) creates, maintains and destroys the universe. Then
returning to his own dhama, he rests upon the bed of Ananta while the Vedic Shrutis who describe
this lila secretly return to their celestial abodes. Similarly, Sri Krishna performs kunja vilasa with
Radharani and sneaks back amongst his family members to fall asleep in his own bed.
Coincidentally, the clever sakhis and manjaris who expand this lila also secretly return to their
residences.

Verse 117
As a result of Sri Rupa Goswami’s mature seva aroused by drinking the madhu at Sri Chaitanya
Deva’s lotus feet, the request of Sri Raghunath Das, the association of Sri Jiva and the benediction
of Sri Raghunath Bhatta, the first chapter of Govinda-llamata entitled ‘Nishanta Keli’ is complete.

Rasa-tarangini Tika:
The time is now 6:00 a.m. Sri Yadunandana Thakur concludes the first chapter by saying :

govinda-caritämRIta kathA anupama


aparUpa rasete jurAya karIa mana
vizvAsa koriyä jei koroye zravaNa
ihAte pAya rAdhA-kRSNera caraNa

The Govinda-lIlAmRta is incomparable. This fascinating rasa will completely satisfy the mind and
ears. Those who hear it with faith and attention will attain Radha Krishna’s yugal charan.

The Gaudiya Mahajanas affirm that one having faith (shraddha) is eligible to read Govinda-
lilamrita. Similarly, through advanced faith in this hearing process, one attains Radha Krishna’s
lotus

Rasa Analysis to Chapter One I

Govinda-lIlImRta is a lila smaran manual that leads one to direct seva in Krishna’s Vrindavan
pastimes. Because the mind controls the body and its activities, and because the mind’s nature is to
be attached to something, lila smaran, based on attachment for the nitya seva for Krishna and his
Vraja associates, is the ideal means to guide one’s various devotional activities. In Bhakti-rasämåta-
sindhu, Sri Rupa advises :

kRSNaM smaran janaM cAsya preSThaM nija-samIhitam


tat-tat-kathA-rataz cAsau kuryAd vAsaM vraje sadA

Smaran is to be performed by focussing on Krishna in the company of the priya Vrindavan


associates that one desires to eternally serve. Related lila katha should always be discussed while
residing in Vrindavan. (Brs 1.2.294)

In the light of this instruction, the best use of Govinda-lilamrita will be made by bhaktas hankering
for the privilege of serving Gopijanavallabha Krishna with Radha and her dearest associates. The
purport of Rupa Goswami’s verse is that one should engage in smaran of these pastimes, of which
interrelated lila katha with like-minded devotees is an integral part.
Ashta-kala lila smaran is also sometimes called daNDa atmikA sevA, or devotional meditation in
which each unit of time (a daNDa = 24 minutes) is assigned to a particular pastime. One can thus
know at any given moment during the day what pastimes the Divine Couple are engaged in. There
are six dandas within the Nishanta lila. The first chapter can thus be broken down as follows:

3:36-4:00 a.m. The manjaris awaken, begin their various seva, and arrive at the nikunja mandir for
Yugala darshan.

4:00-4:24 a.m. By Vrinda’s order, numerous forest birds surround the keli mandir and begin
chirping. The manjaris ecstatically view Radha Krishna’s shayana madhuri and describe its beauty
to one another.

4:24-4:48 a.m. As the Divine Couple awaken and relish each other’s splendor, the sakhis and
manjaris enter the vilasa mandir full of suggestive jokes and laughter.

4:48-5:12 a.m. Sri Lalita Devi performs arati as the Vraja sundaris join in the singing and dancing.
Intoxicated by the beauty of the moment, everyone forgets the need of returning home.

5:12-5:36 a.m. On Vrinda’s signal, the shari named Shubha incites fear. Radha and Krishna leave
the kunja and the manjaris follow, carrying the seva paraphernalia. Seeing a mixup in the Divine
Couple’s dress, the sakhis smile and joke with one another. Krishna points out some interesting
features of Vrindavan’s early morning panorama, using various poetic devices.

5:36-6:00 a.m. The female monkey named Kakkhati shrieks out a warning of Jatila’s arrival. Radha
Krishna panic and flee homeward separately. Upon reaching their respective residences, they safely
return to their own beds.

Lila smaran blends nicely with Sriman Gaurasundar’s Goloka-prema-dhana sankirtan. In order to
assist the Lord’s preaching, many Gaudiya Mahajanas recorded Vrindavan’s lila rasa in the form of
padavali kirtan. A pada is a song composed in Bengali verse describing the Lord’s form, pastimes or
mellows. Lila smaran is usually performed to the accompaniment of Harinam japa. However,
Mahajana padavali makes a nice alternative. In many temples, kirtan of the lilas accompanies the
Deity seva. The following padas have been selected in accordance with the division of dandas given
above. Each song has an raga appropriate to it which, according to custom, is named before the
song.

(1)
Raga vibhasa

nizi abasAne vRndAdevi-jAgalo sakala sakhIgaNa meli


nibhRta nikuJja dvAra korimocana mandira mAjhe caligelo
ratan pAlaGke zute rohu duhujana atizayaAlase bhora
ghana dAmini kIye markata kAJchana aicana duhU tanu jora
bigalito veNi cAruziski-candraka TuTala maNimaya hAra
pahiraNa basana Adhabhela bigolita candana AbharaNa bhAra
ratisukha baGgabhaye sabsakhigaNa vidikadei bahu gAli
ihA sukha rajanitvaritabheloabasAna nirdaya hRdaya tohAri
nizi abazeSa kamala AdhavikAsala daza diza aruNita manda
kaicana kuhuka jagAibo rocaite uddhava dAsA hiya dhanda

(1) As the night ends, Vrinda Devi and the sakhis awaken and proceed to the secret nikuïja where
Radha and Krishna are resting. After unlatching the door, they enter the vilasa mandir.
(2) The Divine Couple lie asleep on a jeweled bedstead, weary from the exhaustion of their night of
prema keli. They tightly embrace, resembling a dark cloud garlanded by lightning, or a golden-
locket containing an emerald.
(3) Radha’s hair and Krishna’s peacock feathers are scattered, their necklaces have been broken and
the gems dispersed. As it were, their clothing has partly vanished along with various golden
ornaments that became a needless burden.
(4) Fearing the night’s cessation and the end of the Divine Couple’s pleasure, the sakhis scorn
Providence, saying, “The night was so full of joy, but you have taken it away so quickly. How hard-
hearted you are!”
(5) With the approaching day, the lotus has half opened and the sky in all the ten directions has
become red with the sun’s rays. In this situation, Sri Uddhava Das’s heart becomes confused, “How
will I be able to awaken Sri Yugala Kishor, and how will I dress them?”

(2)
RAga lalita

jAgahU vRzabhAnu nandini mohan-jubarAje


ei nava juJje bhramara juJje kokila bhana jAje
AkarunA punaH taruNa aruNa udita mudita kumuda badana
camaki cumbi cacuri paduminika sadana sAje
kijAni sajani rajani bhora ghu-ghu ghanaghoSata ghora
gato jAminI jita dAminI kUla lAje
phukarata hatazoka-koka jAgahu eba sabahu loka
zuka zArikA pIka kAkuli nidhuban bhori gAje
galitao lalila basana sAja maNijuta venI phani virAje
uchu koraka ruca coraka kuca joraka mAjhe
torito jorito jalada bhAti duhu sukhe sute rohalo mAti
jini bhAdararasabAdara paramAdara zeje
baraja kulaja jalaja nayani bhumalo bimala kamala bayani
kRta lAlisa bhuja bAliza nAhi tyaje
TuTala kitra phula dhanuguNa kitra ratiraNe bhelo tuNa zuno
samara majha poralo lAjja ratipati bhaye bhAje
vipatti porala jubati vRndA gurujana suni kahabi manda
jagadAnanda sarasa birasa rasabatI rasarAje

(1) Arise, O Vrishabhanu Nandini and Mohan yuvaraj! The bees are buzzing and the kokilas are
clamoring in your pleasure bower.

(2) The cruel early morning sun is rising again! As the lilies close their petals, the bees give them
one last kiss and fly to the lotus patches.
(3) O sakhi Radhe! What’s happening to your pleasure-filled night? The pigeons low-toned sounds
distinctly echo through the dark mist, and now the lightning-complexioned Vraja kaminis will be
humiliated! [Or, The brief night has appeared like a flash of lightning, bringing humiliation to the
gopis!]

(4) The chakravaki birds rejoice, however, because they can unite with their husbands. The
Vrajavasis will soon awaken, and the Nidhuvan forest of your lovemaking now resounds with the
maudlin cries of the kokilas, shukas and sharis.

(5) Radha Madhava’s lovely raiments have been torn and fallen aside, and Radha’s veni, braided
with pearls, looks like a black snake crawling between her raised golden lotus breasts.

(6) Yugala Kishor are saturated within their own prema rasa like a lightning-streak resting within a
dark monsoon raincloud.

(7) Lotus-eyed Radha, the noblest of Vraja’s beauties, happily sleeps on the pillow of Krishna’s two
arms. She is unable to shake her drowsiness.

(8 ) What has happened to the stamina of Kamadeva’s flower bow? During the prema keli battle, he
exhausted his entire stock of arrows! Embarrassed and afraid, Ratipati (Cupid) retreated from the
battlefield!

(9) The Vraja kishoris will face danger, and if discovered, there will be a scandal! Thus, the poet
Jagadananda is both elated and downcast on seeing the plight of Rasavati Rai and Rasaraj Shyama!”

Jagadananda Thakur was a contemporary of Narottam Das Thakur in the family descending from
Sri Narahari Sorkar of Srikhanda. This song served as the model for Bhaktivinoda Thakur’s Udila
aruna.

(3)
Raga mangala

rAdhe govinda jaya rAdhe govindarAdhe gocinda jaya rAdhe


ThAkura hAmAri nanda-ki-lAl ThAkurANi zrImati rAdhe

vRzabhAnu nandinI zrInanda nandana sakala guNa agAdhe


bhora samaya kAle kokila kuhU DAle bhramara hari guNa gAoye

rattaNa palGka upari baiThalo duhuG jana du huN mukha sundara sAje
zyAma zira zikhI curA virAje rAi zire veNI sAje

zyAma gale vanamAlA virAje rAi gale gaja moti sAje


zyAmer kore mohana muralI rAi kore kaGkaNa sAje

zyAma kaTi tate ghurghura virAje rAi kaTi kiGkiNI bAje


jugla caraNe maNimaya nUpura runu jhunu runu jhunu bAje
sakhI maJjarI jata maGgala gAoto jaya rAdhe govinda jaya rAdhe
sundara badane aruNima locana baGkima cAhani sAje

zuka pIka zArI mayUra mayUri kuJja bhavana bhari gAje


vRSabhAnu nandini ramaNI ziromaNi nava sakhi gana mAjhe

zrI vRndAvana kusuma kAnane bhramarI rAdhA guNa gAoe


dIna kRSNa dAsa bhaNe madhura zrI vRndAvane yugala-kizora virAje

(1) The gopis sing,


“Radhe Govinda! Jaya Radhe Govinda! Radhe Govinda! Jaya Radhe!
Sri Nandalal is our worshipable Thakur, and Srimati Radhika is our Thakurani.
(2) Before daybreak, the kokilas shrill from the trees while the bumblebees sing Hari’s guna kirtan.
(3) Upon awakening, Radha Krishna sit up on the jeweled bedstead and display their lovely faces.
Radhika sits on Shyamasundar’s left, and her blushing smile befits a nava-kishori.
(4) Krishna’s silken garments are flashy yellow and Radha’s are deep blue like a newly-formed
raincloud caressed by lightning. Shyama’s headpiece is fashioned with peacock feathers, and
Radha’s curling hair is tied in a braid.
(5) Shyama sports a forest garland, and a necklace of pearls adorns Rai’s chest. Shyama holds his
notorious mohan murali, as numerous bracelets and bangles glitter on Radhika’s wrists.
(6) Shyama’s hips are enamored with jingling bells, and Rai’s hips display a kinkini mala. Radha
Krishna’s shringar is complete with anklebells of gems that jingle runu jhunu runu jhunu from their
lotus feet.
(7) In jubilation, the sakhis and manjaris cry, “Jaya Radhe Govinda! Jaya Radhe!” Kishora
Kishori’s mukharavinda portrays intrigue with darting sidelong glance; their eyes have a soft reddish
hue.
(8 ) The cuckoos, kokilas, peacocks, parrots and other forest birds fill the kunja with sonorous
tumult, “Jaya Ramani shiromani Vrishabhanu Nandini Radhe! Jaya Jaya nava nava sakhi vrinda!”
(9) In this flower kunja, even the honey bees sing Radha’s glories. Sri Dina Krishna Das ( the same
Siddha Krishna Das of Govardhan who wrote the Gutika) concludes, “Thus Sri Sri Yugala Kishor
reign within their madhura Vrindavan dhama!”

(4) Raga Mangala

(1) It is Yugala Kishor’s mangala arati! The sakhis and manjaris sing jaya jaya and clap in unison!
(2) A jeweled ghee lamp is offered, slightly flickering and illuminating Shyama and Gauri’s
effulgent moon faces.
(3) Lalita and Vishakha Sakhi and are totally absorbed in prema’s fascination as they offer arati to
the Divine Couple!
(4) From within the Vrindavan kunj, Yugala Kishor’s manohara murati lights up the entire world!
(5) The parrots and cuckoos sing, the peacocks dance, and even the chakora birds have forsaken the
moon to drink the sweetness of their faces!
(6) All types of instruments resound to fill the sky. The poet Shyamananda ecstatically concludes,
“Let the music play on!”

(5) Raga vibhasa

(1) The night creatures have gone home as the dawn rises; the moon has lost its brightness. The lilies
have closed and the lotus have begun to blossom. How calamitous for those who are dependent on
others.
(2) Observing the situation, Vrinda Devi becomes afraid and on her order, the kokilas sing, the bees
begin buzzing and the impassioned peacocks resound ke-kaa, ke-kaa.
(3) At last Kakkhati calls out: “Radha! Krishna! What are you doing? Hurry up and get out of here.
Jatila has seen that Radha is not at home and has entered the forest waving a stick in search for her!”
(4) On hearing Kakkhati’s lie, Vrishabhanu’s daughter becomes afraid. What else can Rai and Kanu
do except run to safety? They and the sakhis flee on a secret pathway, leaving the woods behind.
(5) The Vraja kishoris perk their eyes in every direction like frightened deer! Standing by Sri Sri
Nagari Nagara (Radhe Shyama), the poet Raya Shekhara smiles and offers them consolation:
“There’s nothing to fear!”

Raya Shekharawas the disciple of Raghunandan Thakur of Srikhanda. He himself was a descendant
of Nityananda Prabhu. He flourished in the early 17th century. He is best known for the Daëòätmikä
verses, which are a summary of the ashtakal lila in Bengali song from which the above has been
taken.

(6) Raga suhai

(1) Krishna starts home, half walking, half slipping. Then he stops and turns around to give Radha a
last kiss!
(2) Looking into each other’s faces, a stream of tears glides down their cheeks, the sakhi loudly cry,
becoming motionless!
(3) Struck with fear, Radha Krishna’s eyes whirl, their loose garments sag, and their flower
decorations dangle—all have become a burden!
(4) After removing their anklebells and jingling ornaments, Radha and Krishna set off in distress,
each on different paths.
(5) Looking back again and again at one another, but they can see nothing, for the tears flow so
profusely from their eyes that their clothes are drenched!
(6) Approaching their homes, the gopis cover themselves with yellow chadars in an effort to remain
unseen.
(7) Covering themselves from head to foot, they tiptoe, also covering their feet to make even less
sound.
(8 ) Radharani enters her home; in fear of the elders, Radha’s eyelids flutter!
(9) Finally Radhika Sundari reaches her own bed and falls asleep.
(10) The poet Sri Balaram Das concludes with a prayer: “As Radha Krishna’s pastimes regularly
unfold—let me see each lila at its prescribed time!’”

Thus ends the Nishanta lila’s Rasa-tarangini Tika commentary.