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Krsna Book Audio Dictation - Chapter 47

From Vanisource

His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Chapter Forty-seven. Subject: "Delivery of the Message of Kṛṣṇa to Gopīs."

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When the gopīs first saw Uddhava, they saw him exactly resembling the feature of Kṛṣṇa, but they could understand that he is a great devotee and follower of Kṛṣṇa. His hands were very long; his eyes were just like petals of lotus flower; he was dressed in yellow-colored garments with a garland of lotus flower; his face was very beautiful. Uddhava, having achieved the liberation of sārūpya, or of the same bodily features, he was looking almost like Kṛṣṇa. And the gopīs who came to visit mother Yaśodā's house early in the morning, that was their duty on account of Kṛṣṇa's absence. They knew that Nanda Mahārāja and mother Yaśodā were always remaining aggrieved, so their first duty was to come there, offer their respect to the most exalted elderly personalities of Vṛndāvana, so that by seeing the friends of Kṛṣṇa, they would remember Kṛṣṇa and be satisfied. Similarly, by seeing Nanda and mother Yaśodā, the gopīs would have been pleased.

But now this day when Uddhava was present, they saw that Uddhava was representing Kṛṣṇa exactly in bodily feature, and they thought it that he was a complete surrendered soul to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. They began to contemplate within themselves, "Who is this boy just like Kṛṣṇa? He has got the same eyes like lotus petal, he has got the same raised nose and beautiful face, and here smiling in the same fashion. Practically in all respects he is representing Kṛṣṇa, the Śyāmasundara, the beautiful blackish boy, and he has dressed also exactly like Kṛṣṇa. Wherefrom this boy has come? Who is that fortunate girl of whom this beautiful man belongs to be husband?" While they were talking about Uddhava like this, they were also very much anxious to know about him, and because they were simple girls in the village of Vṛndāvana, without any sophistication they surrounded all round Uddhava.

After this, when they understood that Uddhava had a message from Kṛṣṇa for the gopīs, they became very much engladdened and called him in a secluded place, offered him nice place to sit down, and they wanted to talk with him very freely. Therefore, without being afraid of the presence of an unknown person, they began to welcome him with nice words and in great submissiveness began to inquire from him about Kṛṣṇa. They said, "We know that you are most confidential associate of Kṛṣṇa, therefore He has sent you to Vṛndāvana for giving solace to His father and mother. We can understand that family affection is very strong. Even great sages who have taken to the renounced order of life, they cannot give up cent percent family affection. Sometimes they think of their family members, and therefore Kṛṣṇa has sent you to His father and mother. Otherwise, He has no other business in the Vṛndāvana. He is now in the town. What He has got to know about Vṛndāvana village or the pasturing ground here of the cows? These things are no more useful for Kṛṣṇa because He is now a man in the city, and persons who do not happen to be His family member, surely He hasn't got anything to do with them.

"Friendship with members outside the family can be continued so long there is some selfish interest in them. Otherwise, why one should bother about other members who are outside the family, specifically a person who is attached to the wives of others? He is interested with them so long there is a need of sense gratification, exactly like the bumblebees, who have interest with the flowers as long as it likes to take the honey out of it. It is very natural and psychological that a prostitute does not care for her paramour as soon as the man, paramour, has lost all monetary resources. Similarly, the citizens, when they find a government is incapable giving them full protection, they give up such place. The students also, after finishing their education, give up the relationship of the teacher and the school. A priest also, after getting their reward from the worshipers give up their relationship. When the fruital season is over, the birds are no more interested with the particular tree. The guest, just after eating in the house of the host, gives up his relationship with him. After the forest fire, when there is scarcity of green grass, the deers and other animals also give up that forest. Similarly, a boyfriend, man, also, after enjoying his girlfriend, woman, gives up the connection." In this way, all the gopīs began to accuse Kṛṣṇa indirectly by so many examples of practical facts.

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In this way, Uddhava experienced that in Vṛndāvana all the gopīs are simply absorbed in the thoughts of Kṛṣṇa and His different activities of childhood pleasure, boyhood pastimes. In talking about Kṛṣṇa with Uddhava, they forgot all about their household business or about themselves. Their interest in Kṛṣṇa gradually increased more and more while talking with Uddhava.

One of the gopīs, namely Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī, She was so much absorbed in thoughts of Kṛṣṇa by Her personal touch with Him that She actually began to talk with a bumblebee which was flying there and trying to touch the lotus feet of that gopī. While other gopīs were talking with Uddhava as messenger from Kṛṣṇa, Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī took that bumblebee as messenger from Kṛṣṇa and began to talk with it as follows: "Oh, you are the bumblebee. You are very much accustomed to drink honey from flower to flower, and therefore you have preferred to become a messenger of Kṛṣṇa, who is of the same nature as you are. I can see on your moustaches the red powder of kuṅkuma, which was smeared with the flower garland of Kṛṣṇa while pressing the breast of some other girl who is My competitor, and you are feeling very much proud by touching that flower, and therefore your moustaches has become reddish. And you have come here carrying that message for Me; therefore, you are so much anxious to touch My feet. My dear bumblebee, I warn you—don't touch Me! I don't want any message from your unreliable master, and I can conjecture also that you are as much an unreliable servant of the unreliable master."

It may be that Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī purposefully talking with that bumblebee, sarcastically criticizing the messenger, Uddhava, who represented Kṛṣṇa. Indirectly, Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī classified Uddhava not only in the bodily feature as other gopīs did, but She wanted to place Uddhava on the same level of quality with Kṛṣṇa. Indirectly She indicated that Uddhava was as much unreliable as Kṛṣṇa Himself is.

Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī wanted to give some practical reasoning why She was so much dissatisfied with Kṛṣṇa, and what to speak with His messenger. She said, addressing the bumblebee, that "Your master Kṛṣṇa is exactly of your quality. As you sit down on a flower and just after tasting a little honey you immediately fly away and sit down in another flower and taste its honey, your master Kṛṣṇa is exactly of the same nature because He had given Me only once the chance of tasting the touch of His lips, and then He left us altogether. I know also that the goddess of fortune, Lakṣmī, who is always in the midst of lotus flower, is constantly engaged in Kṛṣṇa's service. But I do not know how she has become so much captivated by Kṛṣṇa and why she is so much attached to Kṛṣṇa, although she knows the actual character of Kṛṣṇa. Maybe she is simply captivated by the sweet words of Kṛṣṇa; therefore, she could not understand the real character of Kṛṣṇa. But so far we are concerned, we are more intelligent than goddess of fortune. We are not going to be cheated anymore by Kṛṣṇa or His messenger."

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According to expert opinion, Lakṣmī, the goddess of fortune, is subordinate expansion of Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī. As Kṛṣṇa has numerous expansion, viṣṇu-mūrtis, similarly Kṛṣṇa's pleasure potency, Rādhārāṇī, has also innumerable expansions of goddess of fortunes. Therefore goddess of fortune Lakṣmījī is always anxious to be elevated to the position of the gopīs.

Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī continued to say, "You foolish bumblebee, you are trying to satisfy Me to get some reward by singing the glories of Kṛṣṇa, but it is useless attempt. We are now bereft of all our possessions. We are out of our home and family. We know very well about Kṛṣṇa, more than you, and what you will make us know about Kṛṣṇa? They are all old stories. Kṛṣṇa, now He is in the city and is better known as the friend of Arjuna, and He has now many new girlfriends, and they may be very much happy in association with Kṛṣṇa because their lusty burning sensation on the breast has been satisfied by Kṛṣṇa. So they are now happy, and if you go there and glorify Kṛṣṇa, they may be pleased to reward you. You are just trying to pacify Me by your behavior of a flatterer, and therefore you have kept your head under My feet. But I know the trick which you are trying to play. At the same time, I know that you are messenger coming from a greater trick man, Kṛṣṇa. Please therefore leave aside from me.

"I can understand that you are very much expert in reuniting two opposing parties, but at the same time you must know that I cannot place My reliance upon you, neither upon your master Kṛṣṇa. And how we can do so? You know that we left our family, our husband, our children, our relatives only for Kṛṣṇa, and Kṛṣṇa returned without feeling any obligation for us—at last left us forlorn. Do you think we shall place our faith in Him again? We know that Kṛṣṇa cannot be for a moment without being in the association of young woman. That is His nature. And He is finding difficulty in Mathurā because He is no longer in the village or amongst innocent cowherds girl. He is in the aristocratic society and must be feeling difficulty to make friendship with other young girls. Perhaps you have come here to canvass again or to take us there.

"But why Kṛṣṇa should expect us to return there? He has got a very great qualification to entice all other girls; not only in Vṛndāvana or Mathurā, He can do so all over the universe. His wonderful enchanting smile is so attractive. His movement of eyebrows are so beautiful that He can call for any woman, not only here, but either in the heavenly planets or in the middle earthly planets or bottom plutonic planets. What to speak of ordinary women; even the Mahā-Lakṣmī, the greatest of all goddesses of fortune, she is also hankering after Him to render some service. So in comparison to all these women in the universe, what we are? We are very insignificant.

"But Kṛṣṇa advertises Himself as very magnanimous, and eulogized by great saints. So these qualification could be properly utilized if He could show us some mercy, because we are so much downtrodden and neglected by Him. You are poor messenger, less intelligent servant only. You do not know much about Kṛṣṇa, how much ungrateful and hardhearted He is, not only in this life but also in His previous life also. We have all heard this from our grandmother, Paurṇamāsī. She has informed Me that previous to this birth, Kṛṣṇa was born of a kṣatriya family and was known as Lord Rāmacandra, and in that birth also He, instead of killing Vāli, an enemy of His friend, just like a kṣatriya, He killed him just like a hunter. As a hunter takes a secure place hiding and then kills another animal without facing the animal, similarly Lord Rāmacandra, as kṣatriya, He should have fought with the Vāli face to face, but instigated by His friend, He killed him from behind a tree. So He deviated from the religious principle of a kṣatriya.

"Another thing, that He was so much attracted by the beauty of Sītā that Śūrpaṇakhā, the sister of Rāvaṇa, was converted into ugly woman, being cut of her nose and ears by Him. The Śūrpaṇakhā opposed…, proposed some intimate relationship with Him. As a kṣatriya, He should have satisfied her. But instead of doing that, He was so much henpecked that He could not forget Sītādevī and converted Śūrpaṇakhā into ugly woman.

"And what to speak of His being a kṣatriya? Before that birth, He took His birth as a brāhmaṇa boy known as Vāmanadeva. The brāhmaṇa boy asked some charity from Bali Mahārāja, and Bali Mahārāja was so magnanimous that he gave Him whatever he had. Still, this Kṛṣṇa as Vāmanadeva ungratefully arrested him just like a crow and pushed him down the Pātāla kingdom.

"So we know all about Kṛṣṇa, how much ungrateful He is. But the difficulty is that in spite of His being so cruel and hardhearted, it is very difficult for us to give up talkings about Him. Not only we cannot give up, but also great sages and saintly person, they are also always engaged in talkings about Him. We all gopīs of Vṛndāvana do not like anymore to make friendship with this blackish boy. But we do not know how we shall be able to give up His remembrance and talking about His activities."

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In other words, Kṛṣṇa being absolute, His so-called unkind activities are also as good as His kind activities. Therefore, either saintly person or great devotees like the gopīs cannot give up Kṛṣṇa in any circumstances. Lord Caitanya therefore prayed that "Kṛṣṇa, You are free and independent in all respect. Either You can embrace me or You can trample me down under Your feet—whatever You like. Or You make me brokenhearted even not being seen throughout my whole life, still You are my…, the only object of love."

"In my opinion one should not hear about Kṛṣṇa, because as soon as a drop of the nectarean of His transcendental activities is poured into the ear, immediately one become above the platform of duality, attraction and retraction, and being completely freed from the contamination of material attachment, immediately gives up the attachment for this material world—family, home, wife, children and everything which is so materially dear to every person—and being dispossessed of all material acquisition, makes his relatives unhappy and himself also, unhappily wanders in search of Kṛṣṇa, either as a human being or as a bird, and voluntarily accepts the profession of a mendicant. It is very difficult to understand what is Kṛṣṇa, His name, His quality, His form, His pastimes, His paraphernalia and His entourage."

Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī continued to speak: "You, the black messenger of Kṛṣṇa, please do not talk anymore about Kṛṣṇa. Better talk something else. We are already doomed, like the black-spotted she-deers in the forest, who are enchanted by the sweet musical vibration of the hunter. The same way, we have been enchanted by the sweet words of Kṛṣṇa, and again and again thinking of His rays of the nails of His toe, we are becoming more and more by the lust of His association. Therefore, I request you not to talk of Kṛṣṇa anymore."

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This talk of Rādhārāṇī with the bumblebee as messenger and Her talking of accusing Kṛṣṇa in so many ways, at the same time Her inability to give up the talkings, are the signs of transcendental top ecstasy, which is called mahābhāva. This mahābhāva ecstatic manifestation is possible only in the person of Rādhārāṇī and Her associates. Great ācāryas like Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī and Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura, they have analyzed this talkings of Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī, and they have opined that in the mahābhāva sentiment, they are called udghūrṇā, bewilderment, and jalpapratijalpa, talking in different ways, and they are the signs of ujjala-rāsa, the most brightest jewel of love of God.

In this way, while Rādhārāṇī was talking with the bee and the bee was flying hither and thither, all of a sudden the bee disappeared from the sight of Rādhārānī. So because She was in full bereavement out of separation from Kṛṣṇa, so She was feeling ecstasy also by talking with the bee. But as soon as the bee disappeared, She became almost mad, thinking that the messenger-bee might have returned to Kṛṣṇa and must have informed Him all about Her talking against Him, and Kṛṣṇa must have been very sorry. And in this way, She was very much overwhelmed with another type of ecstasy.

In the meantime, the bee, flying hither and thither, again appeared before Her, and She thought that Kṛṣṇa still He is kind upon Her, so that in spite of the messenger carrying disruptive messages from Her, Kṛṣṇa is so kind that again He had sent the bee to take Her to Him. So this time Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī was very much careful, and She did not talk anything against Kṛṣṇa. Rather, she welcomed the bees: "My dear friend, you have come again. I welcome you, and Kṛṣṇa is so kind that He has again sent you. So Kṛṣṇa is so much kind and affectionate to Me that in spite of your carrying contra-messages from Me, He has again sent you. Oh, all auspiciosity for you, My dear friend. Now you can ask from Me whatever you want, I shall give you. You are so kind upon Me that you have come to take Me to Kṛṣṇa, because Kṛṣṇa is not able to come here on account of being surrounded by new girlfriends in Mathurā. But I do not know; you are a tiny creature. How you shall be able to take Me there? And how you shall be able to help Me meeting Kṛṣṇa while He is taking rest there along with the goddess of fortune, embracing her by His chest?

"Never mind. Let us forget all these things about My going there or sending you. Please let Me know how Kṛṣṇa is faring there in Mathurā. Please tell Me if He is remembering still about His great father, Nanda Mahārāja, and affectionate mother, Yaśodā, and poor friends like us the gopīs or His cowherds friends. I am sure He must be sometimes singing about us, because we have served Him just like maidservants, without any payment. Is there any possibility that Kṛṣṇa will again come back and place His arm, which is always fragrant on account of aguru scent, and keep it on the head of us when He returns back? Please ask Kṛṣṇa about all this inquiry.”

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When Uddhava, who was standing by, saw Rādhārāṇī talking in this way, as if She had become almost mad after Kṛṣṇa, he became exceedingly surprised how the gopīs were accustomed to think of Kṛṣṇa constantly in that topmost ecstatic love called mahābhāva. Certainly he brought some message in writing from Kṛṣṇa, and now he wanted to present that message before the gopīs just to pacify them, and he said as follows: "My dear gopīs, your mission of human life is now successful. You are all wonderful devotees of the Supreme Personality of Godhead; therefore, you are just the persons eligible for being worshiped by all kinds of people. You are worshipable throughout the three worlds because your mind is so wonderfully absorbed in the thought of Vāsudeva, Kṛṣṇa. The purpose of all kinds of pious activities and ritualistic performances like giving in charity, following rigidly the austerity of some kind of vow, undergoing severe penances and igniting the fire of sacrifice, chanting of different mantras, reading of the Vedas, controlling the senses and concentrating the mind in meditation—these are some of the many different processes for self-realization and attainment of perfection of life—but actually, they are only meant for realizing Kṛṣṇa and be dovetailed in the transcendent loving service of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.”

This is the last instruction of Bhagavad-gītā also, that although there are description of different processes of self-realization, Kṛṣṇa at the end recommended that one should give up everything aside, simply surrender unto Him. In other words, all other processes, they are meant for teaching one how to surrender ultimately unto the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa. The Bhagavad-gītā also says that this surrendering process is completed by a sincere person executing the processes of self-realization in wisdom and austerity after many, many births.

So the perfection of such austerity being completely manifested in the life of the gopīs, and Uddhava was fully satisfied by seeing their transcendental condition of life. Uddhava continued to say: "My dear gopīs, the mentality which you have developed in relationship with Kṛṣṇa is very, very difficult to be attained, even by great sages and saintly person. As such, you have attained the highest perfectional stage of auspicity. It is a great boon for you that you have fixed up your mind in Kṛṣṇa and have decided to have Kṛṣṇa only, giving up your family, home, relatives, husband, children for the sake of the Supreme Personality. And because your mind is now fully absorbed in Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Soul, therefore universal love has automatically developed in you. I think myself to be so fortunate that I have been favored by your grace to see you in this condition of life. I take it a great fortunate incidence in my life."

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As Uddhava said that he had some message from Kṛṣṇa, the gopīs were more interested in hearing the message from Kṛṣṇa than to hear about their exalted position on account of devotion to Kṛṣṇa. They did not like very much to be eulogized on account of their higher position. Therefore, they showed their anxiety to hear from Uddhava the message which he had brought from Kṛṣṇa. Uddhava said, "My dear gopīs, I have been especially deputed to carry this message for you, which hearing, you are so gentle and great and Kṛṣṇa has specifically sent me to you because I am His most confidential servitor."

The written message which Uddhava brought from Kṛṣṇa was not delivered to the gopīs by Uddhava, but he personally read it before them. The reason is that the message was very gravely written, not only for understanding of the gopīs, but also for understanding of all great empiric philosophers as how pure love of God is intrinsically integrated with all different kinds of energies of the Supreme Lord. From Vedic information we understand that the Supreme Lord has multi-energies, parāsya śaktir vividhaiva śrūyate (Śvetāśvatara Upaniṣad 6.8).

It appears also, the gopīs being very intimate personal friends of Kṛṣṇa, while He was writing the message for them He was very much moved, and He could not write in distinct hand. As explained before, Uddhava was the student of Bṛhaspati; as such, he had very sharp intelligence. So he thought it wise that instead of handing over the written message to the gopīs, it would be better to read them personally and explain to them.

Uddhava continued to say, "These are the words from the Personality of Godhead Kṛṣṇa (within quotation): 'My dear gopīs, My dear friends, please know that separation between ourself is impossible at any time, at any place or at any circumstances because I am all-pervading.' "

This all-pervasiveness of Kṛṣṇa is explained in the Bhagavad-gītā, both in the Ninth Chapter and the Seventh Chapter, that Kṛṣṇa is all-pervasive in His impersonal feature. Everything is resting in Him, but He is not everywhere. In the Seventh Chapter also, He said that the five gross elements like earth, water, fire, air and sky, and the three subtle elements, namely mind, intelligence and egotism, all these eight elements are His inferior energies. Besides these eight kinds of inferior energies there is another, superior energy, which is called the living entity. The living entities are also part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa directly. Therefore, Kṛṣṇa is both material and effective cause of everything. He is always intermingled with everything as cause and effect.

As such, not only the gopīs, but all other living entities are inseparably connected with Kṛṣṇa always, at all circumstances. The difference is that the gopīs, however, are perfectly and thoroughly in cognitions of this relationship, whereas the living entities under the spell of māyā, or the illusory energy, are forgetful of Kṛṣṇa, thinking himself as a separate identity without having any connection with Kṛṣṇa.

Love of Kṛṣṇa, or Kṛṣṇa consciousness, is therefore perfectional stage of real knowledge of understanding things as they are. Our mind can never be vacant. The mind is constantly occupied with some kinds of thought. The subject matter of such thought cannot be outside the eight elements of Kṛṣṇa's energy. One who knows this philosophical aspects of all our thoughts is actually the wise man, and he surrenders unto Śrī Kṛṣṇa. The gopīs are the typical example of this perfectional stage of knowledge. They are not simple mental speculators, but actually they are situated in perfection of knowledge because their mind is always in Kṛṣṇa. The mind is nothing but an energy of Kṛṣṇa. Any person who can think, feel and will as psychic activities cannot be separated from Kṛṣṇa. But the stage in which he can understand his eternal relationship with Kṛṣṇa is called Kṛṣṇa consciousness, and the diseased condition in which he cannot understand his eternal relationship with Kṛṣṇa is called contaminated stage of māyā.

Gopīs being on the platform of pure transcendental knowledge, their minds are always full with Kṛṣṇa consciousness. In this connection one crude example can be cited, just like the fire and the air. Whenever there is air, it is to be understood that there is fire; and whenever there is fire, it is to be understood that there is air. As there is no separation between fire and air, similarly, there is no separation between Kṛṣṇa and the living entities. On the part of the living entities when there are forgetfulness of Kṛṣṇa, that is not normal condition. So far the gopīs are concerned, because they are always full in thought of Kṛṣṇa, they are in the absolute stage of perfection in the matter of knowledge.

The so-called empiric philosophers sometimes think that the path of bhakti is meant for less intelligent class of men. But actually, unless the so-called men of knowledge comes to the platform of bhakti, his knowledge is certainly impure and imperfect. Actually, the stage of forgetfulness of our eternal relationship with Kṛṣṇa is separation. That is also illusory, because actually there is no such separation. The gopīs are not situated in that illusory condition of life, so even from philosophical point of view there was no separation from Kṛṣṇa or the gopīs.

"Nothing is separated from Me. The whole cosmic manifestation is also resting on Me and nonseparated from Me, because before the creation, I was existing." This is confirmed in the Vedic literature that before creation, there was only Nārāyaṇa. There was no Brahmā, no Śiva: eko (vai) nārāyaṇa āsīt na brahmā na īśāno (Mahā Upaniṣad 1.1).

The whole cosmic manifestation is manipulated by the three modes of material nature. So Brahmā is the incarnation of the quality of passion. It is said that Brahmā created this universe, but Brahmā is secondary creator; the original creator is Nārāyaṇa. This is also confirmed by Śaṅkarācārya, that nārāyaṇaḥ avyaktāt paraḥ (Gītā-bhāṣya). Nārāyaṇa is transcendental, beyond this cosmic manifestation. In this way the cosmic manifestation is also not separated from Kṛṣṇa, and anything within this cosmic manifestation is nonseparated from Kṛṣṇa, although Kṛṣṇa is not visible formally in everything.

Kṛṣṇa creates, maintains and annihilates the whole cosmic manifestation by expanding Himself in different incarnations. In this way everything is Kṛṣṇa, everything is depending on Kṛṣṇa, but in the material energy He is not perceived, therefore it is called māyā, or illusion, whereas in the spiritual energy He is perceived in every step, in all circumstances. Such perfectional stage of understanding is represented by the gopīs.

As Kṛṣṇa is always aloof from this cosmic manifestation, although the cosmic manifestation is completely dependent on Him, similarly, a living entity is also completely aloof from his material conditional life, although the material body has developed on the basis of his spiritual existence. In the Bhagavad-gītā the whole cosmic manifestation is accepted as the mother of the living entities, and Kṛṣṇa is the father of all living entities. As the father impregnates the mother by injecting the living entity within the womb, similarly, all the living entities are injected by Kṛṣṇa in the womb of the material nature, and they have come out in different bodies according to their different fruitive activities. But a living entity in all circumstances is aloof from all this material conditional life.

A concrete example: if we simply study our own body, we can understand how a living entity is always aloof from this bodily engagement. Every action in our body is taking place by the interaction of the three modes of material nature. We can see that in every moment, every day, there are so many changes are taking place in our body, but still, I, the spirit soul, is aloof from such changes. I cannot create or annihilate or interfere with such actions of the material nature. The living entity is therefore entrapped only by this material body, and he is conditioned in three stages, namely awakening, sleeping and unconsciousness.

The mind is acting through all these three conditions of life, and I am simply seer. The living entity, therefore, in his sleeping condition sees something as real, and in his awakening condition he sees the same thing as non-real. It is concluded, therefore, under certain circumstances he accepts something as real and under another circumstances he accepts the same very thing as non-real. All these things are different subject matters for the empiric philosophers called the sāṅkhya-yogīns. As such, sāṅkhya-yogīns arrive…, in order to arrive to the right conclusion, undergo severe austerities and penances, renouncement, controlling of the senses, pursuing the path of truthfulness, and combined together they are exactly like a great ocean insurmountable, and it is very difficult to cross over it and come to the right conclusion.

In other words, all these different paths of determining the ultimate goal of life are compared as rivers, whereas Kṛṣṇa is the ocean. As the rivers are gliding down towards the ocean, similarly, all attempt for knowledge is gliding towards Kṛṣṇa. After many, many births of such endeavoring one can actually come to the point of Kṛṣṇa, then he attains the stage of perfection. In the Bhagavad-gītā it is therefore said by the Lord that "Everyone is pursuing the path of realizing Me, but because they have adopted different courses without any bhakti, devotional service, their progressive endeavor is very troublesome." Kleśo ’dhikataras teṣām (BG 12.5).

Kṛṣṇa cannot be understood without coming to the point of bhakti. In the Bhagavad-gītā therefore the three paths, karma-yoga, jṣāna-yoga and bhakti-yoga, are enunciated, namely, those who are too much addicted to the fruitive activities, they are advised to act such for realization of bhakti; those who are addicted to the frustration of empiric philosophy, they are advised to act in such way to realize bhakti. Karma-yoga is therefore different from ordinary karma, and jṣāna-yoga is therefore different from ordinary jṣāna. And ultimately, as stated by the Lord in the Bhagavad-gītā, bhaktya māṁ abhijānāti (18.55): only through execution of devotional service one can understand Kṛṣṇa.

This perfectional stage of devotional service was achieved by the gopīs, because they did not care to know anything else more than Kṛṣṇa. This supramental knowledge is confirmed in the Vedas as yasmin vijṣāte sarvam evaṁ vijṣātam bhavanti (Muṇḍaka Upaniṣad 1.3). Means simply by knowing Kṛṣṇa, all other subordinate knowledges become acquired automatically.

Kṛṣṇa continued to say that "This transcendental knowledge of the Absolute is not any more a necessary thing for you, because from the very beginning of your life you are accustomed to love Me." Knowledge of the Absolute Truth is specifically required for persons who want to get liberation from the material existence. But one who has attained love for Kṛṣṇa, they are already in that platform of liberation, as it is stated in the Bhagavad-gītā that anyone who is engaged in devotional service of Kṛṣṇa unalloyedly, such person is to be considered staying in the transcendental platform of liberation. The gopīs were actually not feeling any pangs of material existence, but they were feeling the separation of Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa therefore said that "My dear gopīs, in order to increase your superexcellent transcendental love for Me, I have purposely separated you from Me so that constantly you may be in meditation for Me."

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Here is the perfectional stage of meditation also. The yogīs are generally very much fond of…

(break) …devotional service to the Lord, without knowing that perfectional stage of devotion means attainment of the perfectional stage of yoga system. This sort of meditation by the gopīs constantly about Kṛṣṇa is confirmed in the Bhagavad-gītā as the topmost position of a yogī. Kṛṣṇa knew very well the psychology of the minds of women. When the beloved person of a woman is away from the sight, the woman thinks of the beloved more meditatively than the beloved being present before her. Kṛṣṇa wanted to teach by the behavior of the gopīs that anyone who is constantly in trance like the gopīs surely attains ultimately the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa by such meditation, without any doubt.

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Lord Caitanya therefore specifically taught people in general the method of vipralambha sevā, means rendering service unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead in the feeling of separation. The Six Gosvāmīns also taught us how to worship Kṛṣṇa in the feeling of the gopīs by separation. In the prayers of Śrīnivāsa Ācārya for the Gosvāmīns these things are very clearly stated. Śrīnivāsa Ācārya says that the Gosvāmīns were always absorbed in the ocean of transcendental feelings by the gopīs. When they lived in Vṛndāvana, they were always searching after Kṛṣṇa, "Where You are, Kṛṣṇa? Where are you are, the gopīs? Where You are, Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī?" They never said that "We have now seen Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa, and therefore our mission is now fulfilled." They remained always in the unfulfillment of their mission to meet Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa. In this connection Kṛṣṇa reminded the gopīs that some of them who could not join the rāsa-līlā dance with Him, they gave up their bodies simply by thinking of Kṛṣṇa. Therefore, Kṛṣṇa consciousness by the feelings of separation is the quickest method for attainment of the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa.

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In this way, by the personal statement of Kṛṣṇa, the gopīs were convinced about the strength of the feelings of separation, because actually they were experiencing such supernatural method of Kṛṣṇa worship, and thus they were much relieved by understanding that Kṛṣṇa is not away from them; He is always with them.

By the words of Uddhava, the gopīs being thus relieved, they received him very happily and began to speak as follows: "We have heard the good news that King Kaṁsa, who was always a source of trouble for the Yadu dynasty, is now killed. This is a good news for us. We hope, therefore, that the members of the Yadu dynasty are now very much happy in the association of Kṛṣṇa, who can fulfill all desires of His devotee.

"My dear Uddhava, will you kindly let us know whether Kṛṣṇa, in the midst of highly enlightened society girls of Mathurā, does sometimes thinks of us? We know that the women and girls in Mathurā City are not village women; they are more enlightened, they are more beautiful. Therefore their behavior with Kṛṣṇa by their beautiful smiling bashful glance and other feminine feature must have been very much pleasing to Kṛṣṇa. We know it very well that Kṛṣṇa is always very much fond of such behavior of beautiful women. We guess, therefore, in Mathurā He has thus been entrapped by such women. My dear Uddhava, would you kindly let me know if sometimes Kṛṣṇa remembers about us while He is in the midst of the society of such girls and women?"

Another gopī inquired whether Kṛṣṇa remembered that particular night when, in the midst of kumudini flowers and full moonlight, when Vṛndāvana became exceedingly beautiful, at that time Kṛṣṇa was dancing with the gopīs, and the atmosphere was surcharged with the sounds of foot bells both of Kṛṣṇa and the gopīs, and there were pleasing conversations exchanged between Him and the gopīs. "Does He remember that particular night? We, the gopīs, however remember that particular night, and while we remember the occasion, specifically we feel separation of Kṛṣṇa and immediately become agitated, as if there is fire in the body. Does He propose to come back again in Vṛndāvana to extinguish this fire, just like the cloud appears in the sky to extinguish the forest fire by pouring water on it?"

Another gopī said, "Now Kṛṣṇa has killed His enemy, and He has victoriously achieved the kingdom of Kaṁsa. He might be married with a king's daughter by this time, and He is very happy amongst His kinsmen and friends. Therefore, why shall He come here in this village of Vṛndāvana?"

Another gopī said that "Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the husband of the goddess of fortune, and He is self-sufficient. He has no business either with us, the girls in the Vṛndāvana forest, nor with the city girls in the Mathurā City. He is the great Supersoul. He has nothing to do with us, here or there."

Another gopī said that "It is now unreasonable hope for us to expect Kṛṣṇa coming back to Vṛndāvana. Therefore we should try to be happy in disappointment. Even the great prostitute Piṅgalā said that disappointment is the greatest pleasure. All of us, we know all these things, but still it is very difficult for us to give up the expectation of Kṛṣṇa's coming back here again. Who can forget the solitary conversation with Kṛṣṇa, on whose breast the goddess of fortune always remains, in spite of Kṛṣṇa's not desiring for her? My dear Uddhava, the lord, we may inform you that this Vṛndāvana is the land of river, forest, cows, vibration of the flute, and our Kṛṣṇa, along with His elder brother, Śrī Balarāma, enjoyed this atmosphere in our company. As such, all the atmospheric condition of Vṛndāvana are constantly reminding us of Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma, and although we know that on the impression of His footprints on the land of Vṛndāvana is the place of residence of the goddess of fortune, still, such signs cannot help us forgetting Kṛṣṇa."

In other words, the gopīs expressed that Vṛndāvana is still full of all opulence and good fortune; there is no scarcity and want in Vṛndāvana so far material necessities are concerned. But still, in spite of all such opulence they could not forget Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma.

"We are constantly remembering various attractive features of beautiful Kṛṣṇa, in the matter of His going on, His smiling, His joking words. We have all been lost by the…, such dealings of Kṛṣṇa. Now it is impossible for us to forget Him. We are always praying for Him, exclaiming, 'My dear Lord, my dear husband of the goddess of fortune, my dear Lord of Vṛndāvana and the deliverer of distressed devotees! We are now fallen and merged into the ocean of distress. Please, therefore, come back again in Vṛndāvana and deliver us from this pitiable condition of life.’ "

So Uddhava minutely studied the transcendental abnormal condition of the gopīs on account of separation from Kṛṣṇa. Therefore Kṛṣṇa…, Uddhava thought it wise to repeat over and over, again and again, all the pastimes of Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the gopīs’ experience in association with Kṛṣṇa. As the materialistic persons are always in a burning condition on account of the blazing fire of material miseries, similarly, the gopīs were also exactly burning in some transcendental blazing fire on account of separation from Kṛṣṇa. This blazing fire which was exasperating the gopīs is, however, distinct from the blazing fire of the material world. The gopīs wanted constantly the association of Kṛṣṇa, whereas the materialistic person wants constantly the advantage of material comforts.

It is suggested by Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura that Kṛṣṇa saved the cowherds boys from the blazing fire of the forest within the twinkling of eyes, simply by closing their eyes. Similarly, Uddhava also suggested the gopīs to close their eyes and meditate on the activities of Kṛṣṇa from the very beginning of their association with Him. And the gopīs could visualize all the pastimes of Kṛṣṇa with them outside from the description received from Uddhava, and inside by remembering those pastimes. By the instruction of Uddhava, the gopīs could understand that Kṛṣṇa was not separated from them, because as they were constantly thinking of Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa was also thinking of them constantly at Mathurā.

So Uddhava's messages and instruction about Kṛṣṇa to the gopīs saved them from immediate death, and the gopīs acknowledged the benediction received from Uddhava. Uddhava practically acted as the preceptor spiritual master of the gopīs, and the gopīs in return worshiped him exactly on the level of Kṛṣṇa, as it is recommended in authoritative scriptures that the spiritual master, either initiator or preceptor, should be worshiped on the level of the Supreme Personality of Godhead on account of his being a very confidential servitor. It is accepted by great authorities that spiritual master is external manifestation of Kṛṣṇa. So the gopīs were relieved from their transcendental burning condition, internally realizing that Kṛṣṇa is with them simply by remembering His association within their hearts, and externally Uddhava helped them in associating with Kṛṣṇa by conclusive instructions.

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Kṛṣṇa, or the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is described in the scriptures as adhokṣaja, means beyond the perception of all material senses. So although He is beyond the perception of material senses, He is at the same time present in everyone's heart; at the same time, He is present everywhere by His all-pervasive feature as Brahman. Therefore, the three kinds of transcendental features of the Absolute Truth can be realized as Bhagavān, the Personality of Godhead; as Paramātmā, the localized Supersoul; and the all-pervasive Brahma, simply by studying the condition of the gopīs as described in the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam in connection with Uddhava's meeting with the gopīs.

It is said by Śrīnivāsa Ācārya that the Six Gosvāmīns were always merged in such thoughts of the activities of the gopīs. Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu has also recommended the gopīs’ method of worship of the Supreme Personality of Godhead is superexcellent. Śrīla Śukadeva Gosvāmī also has recommended that anyone who hears about the dealings of the gopīs with Kṛṣṇa from the right source and follows the instruction in right course, certainly such person will be elevated to the topmost position of devotional service and be able to give up the lust of material enjoyment.

In this way, all the gopīs were solaced by the instruction of Uddhava. They requested him to stay in Vṛndāvana for a few days more, and Uddhava agreed to their proposal and he stayed with them not only for a few days, but for a few months, and always kept them engaged in the transcendental message of Kṛṣṇa and His pastimes, so that the gopīs were exactly feeling the same condition of life as they experienced directly in association with Kṛṣṇa. So long Uddhava remained in Vṛndāvana, all the inhabitants of Vṛndāvana enjoyed his association simply by discussing all the activities of Kṛṣṇa, and in this way their days were passed just like moments. Vṛndāvana's natural atmospheric condition, by the presence of the river Yamunā, nice bushes of trees, the Govardhana Hill, its nice caves, the blooming flowers, and the trees decorated with different kinds of fruits—all these things combined together helped Uddhava to narrate Kṛṣṇa's pastimes (to) all the inhabitants of Vṛndāvana, and they enjoyed Uddhava's association exactly in the same way as they did in the association of Kṛṣṇa.

Uddhava was also specifically attracted by the attitude of the gopīs, how much they were attracted by Kṛṣṇa, and inspired by the anxiety of the gopīs for Kṛṣṇa, began to offer them his respectful obeisances and composed songs in praise of their transcendental qualities, which he sung himself as follows: "Amongst all the living entities who have accepted the human form of life, the gopīs are superexcellently successful in the mission of their life, because their complete thought is eternally absorbed in the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa. Both the great sages of the world and ourself are trying to be absorbed in such meditation, namely, constantly thinking of the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa. But the gopīs have automatically been accustomed to this habit without any yogic practice. I therefore conclude that anyone who has attained such condition of life does not require to take birth in a brāhmaṇa family or to be initiated as a brāhmaṇa, or even to take birth as Lord Brahmā."

In other words, Śrī Uddhava confirmed the statement of Bhagavad-gītā spoken by Lord Kṛṣṇa that anyone who takes shelter unto Him in the right process, may he be a śūdra or a woman, or even born in lower grade family, such person must attain the highest goal of life. The gopīs have taught, therefore, to the whole world that following the footstep of the gopīs by constantly thinking of Kṛṣṇa, one can attain the highest perfectional stage of spiritual perfection. These gopīs are women not born of very highly cultured family. Mostly they are born of cowherds men family and considered to be rude and uncultured. Still they have developed the highest culmination of love of Kṛṣṇa, who is the Supersoul, the Supreme Personality of Godhead and Supreme Brahma. From their examples it is rightly concluded that for self-realization or God realization there is no need of taking birth in high family. The only thing needed is ecstatic development of love for God, as exactly the gopīs did. In achieving perfection in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, therefore, nobody requires any other qualification than to be constantly engaged in the loving service of Kṛṣṇa as the gopīs did.

Kṛṣṇa is the supreme nectarean, reservoir of all pleasure. Kṛṣṇa consciousness, therefore, will act in its own way exactly in the same manner as if one drinks nectarean: knowingly or unknowingly, it will act. The active principle of Kṛṣṇa consciousness will equally manifest everywhere. It does not matter how and where one has taken his birth. Anyone, therefore, who takes to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, Kṛṣṇa will bestow His benediction upon him, without any doubt.

The supreme benediction which the gopīs attained in spite of their being born in the family of cowherds men was never attained even by the goddess of fortune herself, and what to speak of the denizens of heaven, where the bodily flavor of women is exactly like the lotus flower. The gopīs are so much fortunate that during rāsa-līlā Kṛṣṇa personally embraced them with His arms. Kṛṣṇa kissed them face to face, and certainly this was impossible to be achieved by any other woman in the three worlds except the gopīs. "I wish therefore to take my birth as one of the plants and creepers in Vṛndāvana

(break) are so fortunate that the gopīs trample over their body. Lord Kṛṣṇa is Mukunda Himself—He is searched after by great sages and saintly persons—has been so much lovingly accepted by the gopīs, and for Kṛṣṇa’s sake they have left everything: their friends, their families, their children, their homes and all worldly connections."

When Uddhava appreciated the exalted position of the gopīs, he thought within his mind to fall down and take the dust of their feet on his head. At the same time, he was disappointed that if he would ask the gopīs to offer such dust from their feet, perhaps they would not be agreeable. He therefore desired to have his head smeared with the dust of gopīs' feet without their knowledge. As such, he desired to become one of the insignificant grass or herb on the land of Vṛndāvana.

The idea is the gopīs are so much attracted to Kṛṣṇa that when they hear the vibration of the flute of Kṛṣṇa, instantly they leave their home, family, children, honor, prestige, feminine bashfulness— everything—on account of Kṛṣṇa, and they run towards the place where Kṛṣṇa standing vibrating His flute. At that time the gopīs did not consider whether they were passing through the regular way or through the jungles of Vṛndāvana. In that way, imperceptibly the dust of their feet was bestowed on such small grasses and herbs of Vṛndāvana. He therefore desired that the aspiration of having the dust of gopīs' feet not being fulfilled in this life. He aspired in future to have some opportunity to get the position of the grass and the herbs, so that he would be able to have the dust of the feet of the gopīs.

Uddhava appreciated the extraordinary fortune of the…, the extraordinary fortune of the gopīs, because they relieved themselves from all kinds of material pangs and anxieties by placing on their beautiful high breast the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa, which is not only worshiped by the goddess of fortune but also by such exalted demigods like Brahmā and Lord Śiva, and which is meditated upon by great yogīs within their heart. Thus Uddhava desired that he would constantly pray for being honored by the dust of the gopīs' lotus feet, whose chanting of the transcendental pastimes of Lord Kṛṣṇa has become celebrated all over the three worlds.

In this way, after living in Vṛndāvana for some days, Uddhava desired to go back to Kṛṣṇa, and thus he begged permission from Nanda Mahārāja and Yaśodā. After this, he had farewell meeting with the gopīs and, taking permission of them also, he got up on the chariot to start for Mathurā.

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When Uddhava got up on the chariot, all the inhabitants of Vṛndāvana, headed by Mahārāja Nanda and Yaśodā, they came to bid goodbye to Uddhava and presented him with various kinds of valuable goods as they could secure in Vṛndāvana. They could simply express their feelings with tears in the eyes on account of their intense attachment for Kṛṣṇa. All of them desired Uddhava's good wishes that they could simply remember always the glorious activities of Kṛṣṇa, their minds may be always fixed up on His lotus feet, their words may always be engaged in glorifying Kṛṣṇa, and their body may always be engaged in bowing down by remembering Kṛṣṇa constantly.

This prayer of the inhabitants of Vṛndāvana is the superexcellent type of self-realization. The methods are very simple: to fix up the mind always on the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa, to talk of Kṛṣṇa always without talking of any other subject matter, and to engage the body in Kṛṣṇa's service constantly. This is the verdict of all authorities that one should, specifically in this human form of life, engage his life, resources, words and intelligence, everything, for the service of the Lord. Such kind of activities only can elevate a human being to the highest level of perfection.

The inhabitants of Vṛndāvana continued to say that "By the will of the supreme authority we may take our birth anywhere as the result of our own work. It doesn't matter wherever we are placed, but our only prayer is that we may simply be engaged in Kṛṣṇa consciousness." In other words, a pure devotee of Lord Kṛṣṇa never desires to be promoted to the heavenly planets or even to the Vaikuṇṭha or Goloka Vṛndāvana, because for their personal satisfaction they have no desire. A pure devotee treats both heaven and hell on the equal level. For them, without Kṛṣṇa, heaven is hell and with Kṛṣṇa, hell is heaven. In this way, when Uddhava sufficiently honored and worshiped by the pure devotees of Vṛndāvana, he returned back to Mathurā to his master, Kṛṣṇa.

After reaching Mathurā, they offered their respect by bowing down before Lord Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma and began to describe the wonderful situation of devotional life of the inhabitants of Vṛndāvana. Then he presented all the gifts given by the inhabitants of Vṛndāvana to Vasudeva, father of Kṛṣṇa, and Ugrasena, grandfather of Kṛṣṇa.

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Thus ends the Bhaktivedanta purport of the Forty-seventh Chapter Kṛṣṇa in the matter of "Uddhava's Delivery of the Message to the Gopīs."