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Govardhan Retreat – excerpts from Day 4

Thursday, 13 December 2012 / Published in Articles / 1,805 views

By Bhurijana Dasa

First we will speak about the pastime everybody knows but which may not be liked very much. Then we will come back to our main topic.

… Akrura wanted to bring Krsna home and Krsna said “Yes. Yes. Yes”, meanign actually “No. No. No”, – “After killing Kamsa”. From the very beginning Krsna said he would kill Kamsa. Kamsa was a raksasa killing brahmanas (I have heard Kamsa actually ate brahmanas; that is what raksasas do; Aurangazeb liked to eat his lunch cooked on the fire from the brahmin threads from brahmins he had killed that day). People like that exist.

… It is interesting that the washerman said “These clothes are suitable for a king, not for village fools like you two” – actually, the clothes Krsna had were given by the demigods like Varuna, Indra and others. So the washerman was so blinded by his pride he could not even see the clothes on Krsna! … Krsna benedicted the weaver. But the real amazing thing was that right in front of everyone eyes Krsna’s beauty sakti entered the weaver’s body and he became just like a spiritually beautiful cowherd boy. … Then Krsna went to the florist Sudama. He used an excuse, “I need good flowers, so I have to go to Vrindavan”.

Sudama is also the name of Krsna’s friend in Vrindavan. And when there are same names an attraction may develop. They became friends. He wanted to bring a special garland to Krsna.

In the early days Srila Prabhupada would put some rice in front of the temple so that the devotees could offer at least some rice. The principle is one does not go empty handed.

Sudama was making a special garland but it was not finished yet. Yet Krsna was looking for him and found him. Sudama gave Him the special garland and Krsna gave him special blessings. … Kamsa hid his motives in inviting Krsna – he wanted to kill Krsna! But his pretext was Siva’s bow.

Krsna, dressed in wonderful way, with sandalpaste, with soft cloth ornaments
(golden ornaments are not suitable for wrestling), without any worries, just came and effortlessly (acaryas say – with the left hand) broke the 90m bow with a loud crack sending the message to Kamsa, “Release my parents”… … Kamsa could not sleep in anxiety. Krsna and Balarama ate the special rice soaked in milk and sent by Mother Yasoda and slept happily.

In the morning Krsna and Balarama went to the Mathura wrestling arena but Their way was blocked by the elephant Kuvalayapida, who was demoniac. Krsna asked to move aside or be sent to the kingdom of Yamaraja but the mahoot urged the elephant to trample Krsna. Of course, Krsna defeated the elephant. I just wanted to mention two details mentioned by Sri Jiva Gosvami: Krsna moves like a dancer, but kills like a lion. Krsna does everything very elegantly and gracefully. Krsna threw the elephant onto the ground and the elephant tried to stub Krsna with his tusk, but Krsna rolled out of the way and the tusk got stuck in the ground. Krsna jumped up, pulled out the tusk, jumped onto the elephant like a lion and killed him. And Sri Jiva Gosvami says, “When a dog is killed, the fleas are killed also” – in the same way the mahoot died, too. Taking the second tusk, covered in blood, Krsna and Balarama walked in, moving gracefuly like dancers.

Raso vai sah – Krsna appeared to different people differently, according to their consciousness. Some saw Him as beautiful, some as death personified, wrestlers – as lightning. Some people glorified Them in front of Kamsa.

Kamsa, sitting on the dais, never saw Them before and asked, “Who are these boys?” – “They are the ones!”

Krsna just rammed the tusk into the ground and turned his back to Kamsa. Who is this Kamsa anyway. Then the wrestlers, Canura, Mustika come. Krsna is so clever in his exchange. Canura said, “You should please the king by wrestling with us”, – “King may be pleased, but you will lament”, – “But you killed Dhenuka, the elephant etc.” — “Dhenuka had fleas, he was sick already, we just touched him and he died; elephants tusk even fell out, the bow was eaten by termites, it just broke when we touched it”.

And then they killed all the wrestlers right before Kamsa’s eyes. A materialist thinks, “Wealth and life are the same”. So Kamsa stopped the playing band – soldiers take Nanda’s all the wealth, Vasudeva – kill him, Ugrasena, my father – kill him”. And then Krsna became angry.

Krsna jumped on the dais and grabbed Kamsa by the hair. Sri Jiva says that by that touch half of Kamsa’s life air was destroyed. Then different acaryas give varying descriptions.

Krsna threw Kamsa on the ground and landed on him, because Krsna did not want to land on the hard earth:). Krsna is so intelligent.

I have heard once a story: a kazi’s dog died and everyone went to the dog’s funeral, and then kazi died, and no one went to the funeral:)

To convince everyone that Kamsa is dead Krsna dragged Kamsa around. …
*** Now to go back to Uddhava’s visit. Uddhava was shown the aprakata [happy] Vrndavan.

When Uddhava arrived Nanda Maharaja was depressed. But he was able to draw the strength and come to the external consciousness to greet Uddhava.

Krsna sent Uddhava to Vrindavan after coming back from the gurukula. So that was between 60 & 70 days after Krsna had left.

Uddhava was fed but Nanda Maharaja did not eat.

10.46.14 “As soon as Uddhava arrived at Nanda Maharaja’s home, Nanda came forward to meet him. The cowherd King embraced him in great happiness and worshiped him as nondifferent from Lord Vasudeva. “After Uddhava had eaten first-class food, been seated comfortably on a bed and been relieved of his fatigue by a foot massage and other means, Nanda inquired from him as follows. [Nanda Maharaja said:] My dear most fortunate one, does the son of Sura fare well, now that he is free and has rejoined his children and other relatives?

[–Nanda Maharaja wanted to ask about Krsna, but then he would be choked up and unable to say anything more–]

Vasudeva is with his sons, but we have lost the most valuable for us. When we lose something like passport, money, computer, or near and dear relatives, we feel an emptiness, smasana-vairagya, but later we come back to normal life. But if we take that emptiness and multiply it not by a million times but unlimitedly we might get a notion of what Vrajavasis felt.

Then somewhat steadying himself he asks:

Does Krsna remember us? Does He remember His mother and His friends and well-wishers? Does He remember the cowherds and their village of Vraja, of which He is the master? Does He remember the cows, Vrndavana forest and Govardhana Hill? SB 10.46.18

Sri Visvanatha CT says that Nanda points at Yasoda Mata. “Just see! Just see the condition of Vraja bereft of its glory!” And just through this they experience Krsna, through viraha-bhava.

SB 10.46.19 apy ayasyati govindah sva-janan sakrd iksitum tarhi draksyama tad-vaktram su-nasam su-smiteksanam Will Govinda return even once to see His family? If He ever does, we may then glance upon His beautiful face, with its beautiful eyes, nose and smile.

– we are not asking Him to come for all time, we want to see Him just once. Will we ever see Krsna’s face again? And Nanda almost faints.

And then he remembers how Krsna saved them: 20.We were saved from the forest fire, the wind and rain, the bull and serpent demons-from all such insurmountable, deadly dangers-by that very great soul, Krsna.

– will He now save us from the devastation of being separated from Him? In every situation all the residents turned to Krsna, “Krsna, Krsna, save us!” Nanda M. remembered every circumstance, how Krsna saved them. Krsna swallowed the forest fire, which turned into a drop of nectar. Aristasura (which created fear for the whole area) – was challenged by Krsna, “You lowest of the low [showing that the form of the bull does not make him exalted], if you came to fight with me then I am here!” and He placed His hand on the shoulder of Subala. Now who is the coolest of all teenagers? Krsna threw Arista again and again and killed him, and Nanda Maharaja remembers that.

Every time it is Krsna who saves us, especially now. … Krsna was their hero, and every time there was an explosion of ecstatic emotions. We prefer things somewhat placid, but santa-rasa is sometimes not even counted among the bhakti-rasas, because there is an explosion of emotions in relationships.

Did Krsna want that the boys enter Aghasura’s mouth? Of course not, He does not want them to suffer, but they want Him to save them. And Sri Visvantha CT comments that the boys desired one thing, Krsna desired another things, and Yogamaha sided with the boys! And Krsna thought, “How amazing is the way my Yogamaya works!” … It is not even Yogamaya, it is prema, devotees give themselves fully to Krsna, they have nothing separate. And because Krsna performs nara-lila, it means that even when He kills the demons He cannot disturb the Vrajavasis’ prema, so He cannot manifest a thousand arms, a huge form etc. Only in the Aghasura’s throat, when no one could see Him, He expanded. … In remembering Krsna’s pastimes Nanda M. experiences Krsna. Then, in verse 21 he says: smaratam krsna-viryani lilapanga-niriksitam hasitam bhasitam canga sarva nah sithilah kriyah As we remember the wonderful deeds Krsna performed, His playful sidelong glances, His smiles and His words, O Uddhava, we forget all our material engagements. … [story of Bhurijan Prabhu’s ring and Srila Prabhupada] [subtlety of Vraja exchanges, Damodara-lila irony] … And then Krsna is gone. But in separation they get the most intense experience of Krsna. But they don’t think, “Oh, how nice, Krsna is gone” – no, it is “worse than death” for them. That is the nature of love.

They ask, “So why does He not save us now from this separation?!”

krsnena su-mahatmana Ref. VedaBase => SB 10.46.20
– Sri Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura comments: “But you will not die. You will live a long time, raising your son with affection.” “Now, we will not be saved from the hands of death.” In saying this he recounts the previous threats of death. “He saves us from the forest fire, from the rains produced by Indra, because of his natural affection for us (su mahatmaha). But today, why does he not save us from the huge fire of terrible separation? I cannot understand this.”

Uddhava will say, “Don’t worry, He is coming soon!” – “Soon” is like death to them, – how soon? One day, two days? How long will we survive.

Perhaps Vasudeva loves Him so much and does not let Him come. They never blame Krsna. Except the gopis.

He has the power to do anything.

Hare Krishna…


The full recordings (without my {APD} mistakes, omissions, and miscomprehensions:-) will be available at under “Audio”, in a few weeks time.

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