The Transcendental Features Of Sri Krishna And Srimati Radharani by Srila Krishnadas Kaviraja Goswami
Sri Ramananda Raya said: Among the loving sentiments of all the gopis, Srimati Radharani’s love for Sri Krishna is the zenith. Indeed, the glories of Srimati Radharani are highly esteemed in all revealed scriptures. “Just as Srimati Radharani is most dear to Sri Krishna, Her bathing place [Rādhā-kuṇḍa] is also dear to Him. Among all the gopis, Srimati Radharani is supermost and very dear to Lord Krishna.” “[When the gopis began to talk among themselves, they said:] Dear friends, this gopi who has been taken away by Krishna to a secluded place must have worshiped the Lord more than anyone of us.”
Lord Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu said, ‘Please speak on. I am very happy to hear you because a river of unprecedented nectar is flowing from your mouth.’ Ramananda Raya replied, ’During the rāsa dance Sri Krishna did not exchange loving affairs with Srimati Radharani due to the presence of the other gopis. Because of the dependence of the others, the natural intensity of the love between Radha and Krishna was not manifest. Therefore He stole Her away. Since He rejected the company of the other gopis for Srimati Radharani, we can understand that Lord Sri Krishna has the most affection for Her.’ Ramananda Raya continued, ‘Please now hear from me about the glories of Srimati Radharani’s loving affairs. They are beyond compare within these three worlds. Finding Herself treated equally with all the other gopis, Srimati Radharani displayed coquettish behavior and left the circle of the rāsa dance. Missing Srimati Radharani’s presence, Krishna became very unsettled and lamented wandering throughout the forest ardently looking for Her . “Lord Krishna, the enemy of Kamsa, took Srimati Radharani within His heart, for He desired to dance with Her. Thus He left the arena of the rāsa dance and the company of all the other beautiful damsels of Vraja. Feeling vexed by the arrow of Cupid and unhappily regretting His mistreating Srimati Radharani, Madhava, Lord Krishna, began to search for Her along the banks of the Yamuna River.
When He failed to find Her, He entered the bushes of Vrindavan and began to lament.” Just by considering these two verses alone, one can understand what nectar there is in Their loving dealings. They are simply an ocean of nectar. Although Krishna was in the midst of hundreds of thousands of gopis during the rāsa dance, He nonetheless always kept Himself by the side of Srimati Radharani in one of His transcendental forms.
Lord Krishna is generally equipoised to everyone in His dealings, but due to the naturally contradictory ecstatic love of Srimati Radharani, there are opposing elements flavouring Their exchanges. “The progress of loving affairs between a young boy and a young girl is like the movement of a snake. On account of this, two types of anger arise between Them— justified anger and causeless anger.” When Radharani left the rāsa dance out of jealous anger and resentment, Lord Sri Krishna became very anxious because He could not see Her. Lord Krishna’s desire in the rāsa-līlā circle is perfectly complete,
but Srimati Radharani is the binding link in fulfilling that desire. The rāsa dance does not enliven the heart of Krishna without Srimati Radharani. Therefore, He gave up the arena of the rāsa dance and went out to search for Her. When Krishna went out to search for Srimati Radharani, He wandered here and there. Not finding Her, He became afflicted by the arrow of Cupid and began to lament. Since Krishna’s amourous ambitions were not satisfied even in the midst of hundreds of thousands of gopis and He was intently searching for Srimati Radharani, we can well imagine how transcendentally qualified She is.” After hearing this, Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu said to Ramananda Raya, ‘That for which I have come to your residence has now become a substantive truth in My heart. Now I have come to understand the sublime goal of life and the process of achieving it. Nevertheless, I think that there is something more to be told, and My mind is desirous of hearing that. Kindly explain the transcendental features of Krishna and Srimati Radharani. Please also explain the truth of transcendental mellows and the transcendental form of love of Godhead. Kindly explain all these truths to Me because, but for yourself, no one can fathom them.’
Sri Ramananda Raya replied, ‘I do not really know anything about this. I simply mouth the words that You make me speak. Like a parrot I simply repeat whatever understanding You have placed in my heart. You are the Supreme Personality of Godhead Himself. Who can understand Your inconceivable pastimes? You inspire me from within my heart and make me speak that which You have invested. I do not know whether I am speaking well or badly.’ Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu said, ‘I am an impersonalist in the renounced order of life, and I do not even know what transcendental loving service to the Lord is. I simply float in the ocean of impersonalist philosophy. Due to the association of Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya, My mind became enlightened. Therefore I asked him about the truths of transcendental loving service to Krishna. Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya told me that he does not actually know the truths regarding Lord Krishna. He said that they are all known only to yourself, Ramananda Raya, who are not present here in Puri.
Lord Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu continued, ‘After hearing your glories, I have come to learn from you. However, you are offering Me respectful words of praise because I am a sannyāsī, one in the renounced order of life. Actually, Whether one is a brāhmaṇa, a sannyāsī or a śūdra—regardless of what he is—he can become a spiritual master if he knows the science of Krishna.
Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu continued, ‘Please do not deprive Me of what I have come here for considering Me a learned sannyāsī. Please simply satisfy My mind by describing the truths of Radha and
Krishna.’ Sri Ramananda Raya was a great devotee of the Lord and a lover of God, and his intelligence could not be covered by Krishna’s illusory energy. He could thus understand the intention of the Lord, and became a little unsettled in the face of such an intense and powerful desire.
Sri Ramananda Raya said, ‘I am just a dancing puppet, and You pull the strings. Whichever way You make me dance, I will dance. My dear Lord, my tongue is just like a stringed instrument, and You are its player. Therefore I simply express whatever arises in Your mind.’
Ramananda Raya then began to speak on kṛṣṇa-tattva. ‘Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He is the original Godhead Himself, the source of all incarnations and the cause of all causes. There are innumerable Vaikuntha planets, and similarly innumerable incarnations. In the material world also there are innumerable universes, and Krishna is the ultimate resting place for all of them. The transcendental body of Sri Krishna is eternal and full of bliss and knowledge. He is the son of Nanda Maharaja. He is full in all plenitudes and potencies, as well as all spiritual mellows. Krishna, who is known as Govinda, is the supreme controller. He has an eternal, blissful, spiritual body. He is the origin of all. He has no other origin, for He is the prime cause of all causes.’ In the spiritual realm of Vrindavan, Krishna is the spiritual, ever-fresh Cupid.
He is worshiped by the chanting of the Kāma-gāyatrī mantra, with the spiritual sound klīm. The very name Krishna means that He attracts even Cupid. He is therefore attractive to everyone—male and female, moving and inert living entities. Indeed, Krishna is known as the all-attractive one. “When Krishna left the rāsa-līlā dance, the gopis became very morose. Whilst they were still grieving, Krishna re-appeared dressed in yellow garments. Wearing a flower garland and smiling sweetly, He was attractive to even Cupid. In this way Krishna made His appearance among the gopis.’ Each and every devotee has a certain type of transcendental mellow in relation to Krishna. But in all transcendental relationships the devotee is the worshiper [āśraya] and Krishna is the object of worship [viṣaya]. Let Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, be glorified! By virtue of His expanding attractive features, He subjugated the gopis named Taraka and Pali and absorbed the minds of Shyama and Lalita. He is the most attractive lover of Srimati Radharani and is the reservoir of pleasure for devotees in all transcendental mellows. Krishna is all-attractive for devotees in all mellows because He is the personification of the conjugal mellow. Krishna is attractive not only to all the devotees, but even to
Himself as well. My dear friends, just see how Krishna is enjoying the season of spring! With the gopis embracing each of His limbs, He is like amorous love personified. With His transcendental pastimes, He enlivens all the gopis and the entire creation. With His soft bluish black arms and legs, which resemble blue lotus flowers, He has created a festival for Cupid. Krishna also attracts Narayana, who is the incarnation of Sankarsana and the husband of the goddess of fortune. He attracts not only Narayana but also all women, headed by the goddess of fortune, the consort of Narayana. “[Addressing Krishna
and Arjuna, Lord Maha- Visnu (the Mahapurusa) said:] ‘I wanted to see both of you, and therefore I have brought the sons of the brāhmaṇa here. The two of you have appeared in the material world to reestablish religious principles, and you have both come fully endowed with all your potencies. After killing all the demons, please quickly return to the spiritual world.”
“O Lord, we do not know how the serpent Kaliya attained the opportunity to be touched by the dust of Your lotus feet. In order to achieve this end, the goddess of fortune performed austerities for centuries. Indeed, She gave up all other desires and observed austere vows. Considering this, it is astounding that this serpent Kaliya got such an opportunity.” Lord Krishna’s sweetness is so attractive that it steals even His own mind. Thus even He wants to embrace Himself.” “Upon seeing His own reflection in a bejeweled pillar of His Dvaraka palace, Krishna desired to embrace it, saying, ‘Alas, I have never seen such a person before. Who is He? Just by seeing Him I have become eager to embrace Him, exactly as Srimati Radharani does.’” Sri Ramananda Raya then said, ‘I have thus briefly explained the original form of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Now let me describe the position of Srimati Radharani. Krishna has unlimited potencies, which can be divided into three main parts. These are, the spiritual potency, the material potency and the marginal potency, which is known as the living entities. In other words, these are all potencies of God—internal, external and marginal. But the internal potency is the Lord’s personal energy and stands over the other two. The original potency of Lord Visnu is superior, or spiritual, and the living entity actually belongs to that superior energy. Yet there is another energy, called the material energy, and this third energy is full of ignorance.
Originally Lord Krishna is sac- cid- änanda- vigraha, the transcendental form of eternity, bliss and knowledge; therefore His personal potency, the internal potency, has three different forms. Hlädiné is His aspect of bliss; sandhiné, of eternal existence; and samvit of cognisance, which is also accepted as knowledge. My dear Lord, You are the reservoir of all transcendental qualities. Your pleasure potency, existence potency and knowledge potency are actually all one internal spiritual potency. The conditioned soul- although actually spiritual- sometimes experiences pleasure, sometimes pain and sometimes a mixture of pain and pleasure. This is due to his being touched by matter. But because You are above all material qualities, these are not found in You. Your superior spiritual potency is completely transcendental.
Thus, for You there is no such thing as relative pleasure, pleasure mixed with pain, or pain itself. The potency called hladini gives Krishna transcendental pleasure. Through this pleasure potency, Krishna personally tastes all spiritual pleasure. Although He Himself is happiness personified, Lord Krishna tastes all kinds of transcendental happiness. The pleasure relished by His pure devotees is also manifest by His pleasure potency. The most essential part of this pleasure potency is love of Godhead [prema]. Consequently, the explanation of love of Godhead is also a transcendental mellow full of pleasure. The essential part of love of Godhead is called mahabhava, transcendental ecstasy, and that ecstasy is represented by Srimati Radharani. Among the gopis of Vrindavan, Srimati Radharani and another gopi are considered chief. But when we compare the gopis, it appears that Srimati Radharani is most important because Her real feature expresses the highest ecstasy of love.
The ecstasy of love experienced by the other gopis cannot be compared to that of Srimati Radharani. The body of Srimati Radharani is a veritable transformation of love of Godhead. She is the dearest friend of Krishna, and this is known throughout the world.
“I worship Govinda, the primeval Lord, who resides in His own realm, Goloka, with Radha, who resembles His own spiritual figure and who embodies the ecstatic potency [hlädiné]. Their companions are Her confidantes, who embody extensions of Her bodily form and who are imbued and permeated with ever- blissful spiritual rasa.”
That supreme ecstasy of Srimati Radharani is the essence of spiritual life. Her only purpose is to fulfill all the desires of Krishna. Srimati Radharani is the topmost spiritual gem, and the other gopis—Lalita, Vishakha and so on—are expansions of Her spiritual body.
Srimati Radharani’s transcendental body is brilliant in luster and full of all transcendental fragrances. Lord Krishna’s affection for Her is like a perfumed massage. Srimati Radharani first bathes in the shower of the nectar of compassion. She then bathes in the nectar of youth. After Her midday bath, Radharani takes another bath in the nectar of bodily luster, and She puts on the garment of shyness, which is Her deep blue silk sari. Srimati Radharani’s affection for Krishna is Her upper garment, which is reddish in color. She then covers Her breasts with another garment, composed of affection and anger toward Krishna. Srimati Radharani’s personal beauty is the red powder known as kuṅkuma, Her affection for Her associates is sandalwood pulp, and the sweetness of Her smile is camphor. These ingredients are combined and spread all over Her body. Conjugal love for Krishna is an abundance of musk, and Her whole body is anointed with that musk.
Craftiness and covered anger constitute the arrangement of Her hair. The quality of anger due to jealousy is the silk garment covering Her body. Her attachment for Krishna is the reddish color of betel nuts on Her brilliant lips. Her double-dealings in loving affairs constitute the black ointment around Her eyes. The ornaments decorating Her body are the blazing ecstasies of goodness and the constantly existing ecstasies, headed by jubilation. All these ecstasies are the ornaments all over Her body. Also ornamenting Her body are the twenty kinds of ecstatic symptoms beginning with kila-kiñcita. Her transcendental qualities constitute the flower garland hanging in fullness over Her body. The tilaka of good fortune is on Her beautiful broad forehead. Her various loving affairs are a gem stone, and Her heart is the locket hanging on Her chest.
Srimati Radharani’s gopi friends are Her mental activities, which are concentrated on the pastimes of Sri Krishna. She keeps Her hand on the shoulder of a friend, who represents youth. Srimati Radharani’s bedstead is youthful pride itself, and it is situated in the abode of Her bodily aroma. She is always seated there thinking of Krishna’s association. Srimati Radharani’s earrings are the name, fame and qualities of Lord Krishna. The glories of Lord Krishna’s name, fame and qualities are always pervading Her speech. Srimati Radharani induces Krishna to drink the honey of the conjugal relationship. She is therefore always active in satisfying all the amourous desires of Krishna.
Srimati Radharani is a mine filled with valuable jewels of love for Krishna. Her transcendental body is complete with unparalleled spiritual qualities. If one asks about the origin of love of Krishna, the answer is that the origin is in Srimati Radharani alone. Who is the most dear friend of Krishna? The answer again is Srimati Radharani alone. No one else. Srimati Radharani’s hair is very curly, Her two eyes are always moving to and fro, and Her breasts are firm. Since all transcendental qualities are manifested
in Srimati Radharani, She alone is able to fulfill all the desires of Krishna. No one else. Even the exalted Satyabhama, one of the queens of Sri Krishna, desires the fortunate position and excellent qualities of Srimati Radharani. All the gopis learn the art of dressing from Srimati Radharani. Moreover, even the goddess of fortune, Laksmidevi, and the wife of Lord Shiva, Parvati, desire Her beauty and qualities. Indeed, Arundhati, the celebrated chaste wife of Vasistha, emuates the chastity and religiosity of Srimati Radharani.” Since Lord Krishna Himself cannot reach the limit of the transcendental qualities of Srimati Radharani. How, then, can an insignificant living entity like myself count them?”’ Lord Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu replied, ‘Now I have come to understand the truth of the loving affairs between Radha and Krishna.’
— Sri Chaitanya Charitamrita, Madhya Lila, Chapter 8 : Talks between Lord Chaitanya and Ramananda Raya, Verses: 104-186.