Srimati Radharani's Beautiful Mood

by Sriman Anantacarya dasa [ACBSP 1972]

Srimati Radharani, the tenderhearted, feminine counterpart of Godhead, is that one person in all of existence who knows best how to express love for Krsna. She is the supreme container of love for Him, and, as such, She is known as the asraya category. Moreover, it is She who, like a mother, nurtures us in our devotional service.

Krsna, the object of Her love, comes once in a day of Brahma to display and enjoy His pastime mellows. Afterward, however, Krsna was left with three unfulfilled desires, and to fulfill those inner longings is the paramount reason for His return as Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.

Srimati Radhika is the unique, munificent cause of those unfulfilled desires of Krsna. In this way Vrishabhanu-nandini is establishing the greatest welfare for Him........and for all His uncountable jivas.

In order to recognize those desires, we remind ourselves that transcendental ecstatic bliss is called bhava. When bhava becomes condensed, it is called mahabhava. Srimati Radharani is highly concentrated ecstatic bliss, mahabhava, in person.

Krsna, of course, is also tasting bliss. Indeed, He tastes the bliss to which He is entitled as the object of Her love. However, He is noticing that the abode of love, Srimati Radharani, the asraya category, is tasting bliss ten million times greater than His! Radharani was feeling more transcendental pleasure in the company of Krsna than He could understand, and He wanted to experience those blissful emotions for Himself. However, for Sri Krsna to enjoy in the position of Srimati Radharani was impossible, because that position is completely foreign to Him. Krsna is the transcendental male, the masculine counterpart of Godhead. Radharani is the transcendental female, the feminine counterpart of Godhead. As a result, Krsna cannot fulfill His desire unless He Himself actually takes up the position of that Asraya category. Therefore, in order to experience the blissful emotions of Srimati Radharani, and feel the pleasure of the asraya category, Lord Krsna appeared as Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.

Now, in addition, there is a continuous competition between Srimati Radharani and Lord Krsna to see who can most increase the intensity of the love which they have between them.

She increases, He increases, She increases...there's no end to it. Neither of them wants to be defeated while increasing the intensity of Their love. Similarly, the beauty of Lord Krsna increases when He sees the beauty of the milkmaids. Concomitantly, the more the milkmaids see Lord Krsna's beauty, the more their beauty increases. In this way a competition takes place between them in which no one acknowledges defeat.

Now, Krsna becomes curious. He can understand this loving competition from His own angle of vision, but He does not understand what's going on in the mind of Srimati Radharani. He gets a desire to understand what it is like to be on the other side of this loving competition, and to understand this loving exchange from Her angle of vision. He becomes very curious about the mental activities of Srimati Radharani and Her attitude of ever-increasing love for Him.

Now, for Lord Krsna, it is not such a difficult thing to study the mental attitudes of Srimati Radhika, because Her mental attitudes are out there walking around in saris. Srimati Radharani expands Her mental attitudes as Her gopi girlfriends, all of whose activities are concentrated on the pastimes of Krsna. As expansions of Her personal form and transcendental disposition, they are agents of different loving reciprocations in Krsna's pastimes.

Therefore, Srimati Radharani and Her maidservants decide to help Krsna by setting up a school for Him at Radha Kunda. Radha is the Chancellor of this incomparable school, while Lalita and Visaka are the principal department heads. It is with their help that the only student, Lord Krsna, is then able to study with all those sakhis who are the personified mental activities of Srimati Radhika.

When the study course is finished, it is then time for Krsna to take His final exam, which is administered by Srimati Lalita Devi. Krsna passes the exam.

However, Lalita informs Him that this diligent academic learning is not enough. If He really wants to fully appreciate Radha's mental attitudes, then practical experience will also be required.

Again, this experience is not possible unless He actually takes up the position of the Asraya category. Radharani's attraction for Krsna is sublime, and to experience that attraction and understand the transcendental sweetness of Himself, He must personally accept Her mentality. Consequently, in order to fully appreciate the mental activities of Srimati Radhika, He comes as Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.

Krsna is the personification of conjugal beauty. At one point, in Dwaraka, He sees the beauty of His own reflection in a jewelled fountain. At that time He says, "My mind, bewildered upon seeing this beauty, impetuously wants to enjoy it in the same way that Srimati Radharani enjoys it." Lord Krsna's beauty attracts Lord Krsna Himself. However, because He cannot fully enjoy it, His mind remains full of sorrow.

Therefore, in order to relish His beauty the way that She does, He takes up the position of the Asraya category, accepting the emotions and bodily luster of Srimati Radharani, and comes as Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu.

Thus, the primary cause for Krsna's descent as Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu was to taste the above three moods of Srimati Radhika, which only She could taste. He therefore borrowed Her internal mood and beauty, and became tadatma with Her. By becoming tadatma with Radhika, He forgot that He is Krsna, and could taste as She does.

Some correlative details appear in a nectarian history told by His Divine Grace Gour Govinda Swami. This story reveals the origin of the final verse of the Sri Siksastikam:

One day Srimati Radharani had nicely decorated the kunja with the help of Her maidservants. With great anticipation, they are expecting Krsna to come and arrive at the planned rendezvous time. However, Krsna does not show up. They wait and wait, but still no Krsna. Radha is beginning to go into Her sulky mood, and also beginning to cry, so a messenger[dyuti] is sent out to find Him. Along the way, the dyuti encounters one of Candravali's servants who pleasurably reports that Krsna is over there in that kunja. When the dyuti returns, she of course gives a prompt report to Lalita and Visaka, who in turn relay the news to Srimati Radharani. At that point, Radha's leftist sulky mood reaches it's peak, and She forbids that Krsna can enter Her kunja. And She is crying, crying, crying.

Radharani says, "I don't want Krsna to come. Don't allow Him to come to My kunja. Entrance is forbidden!"

When Krsna finally does arrive some time later, Lalita and Visaka are standing guard at the entrance, and stop Him. They block His entry and sharply tell Him to "Get out of here". He pleads for entry to the kunja, but there is no permission. Visakha, who is harder than Lalita, is especially tough on Him at this point. He must turn away and leave.

So Krsna went away to the banks of the Yamuna. Morose and disappointed, Krsna could not understand what to do. He had gone to Candravali's kunja only to heighten the leftist mood of Radhika, the mood which brings Him so much pleasure. He wanted an opportunity to have Her association while She was in that heightened leftist mood, but His plan firmly backfired. Now, what to do, what to do?

In the meantime, Vrndadevi learns of Krsna's predicament, so She comes to Him with a solution.

She tells Him that He must completely change His appearance, take up the position of a begging Sannyasi, and sing a special song. She tells Him that He must get rid of all that black hair and shave His head, discard the dress of a cowherd boy and wear sannyas cloth, refrain from the 3-fold bending form, give up the flute and the peacock feather, and learn the song that She will teach Him,.... and then there may be some hope.

When Vrnda said this, immediately that form appeared there. Krsna became that sannyasi form--shaved head, and His complexion was of molten gold. No peacock feather, no flute, no three places curved form. In sannyasi form He immediately appeared there. Vrnda then taught Him to sing a beautiful song in glorification of Radha, the last line of which is,

"Today Kanu, Krsna, is moving from door to door begging radha-prema, radha-prema, radha-prema".

So Krsna, singing, goes back to the kunja where Lalita and Visaka become very happy to see such a blissful sannyasi singer, and very happy to hear such a wonderful song. When they ask Him what He wants, The sannyasi answers, "I have nothing, I am a beggar. I've come here to get radha-prema, radha-prema. I am a prema-bhikhari. I am a beggar of prema."

So Visakha takes the sannyasi into the kunja. She requests Him, "Will You please again sing that nice song You were singing before?"

Then Krsna sang that song in glorification of Radha. "Today Kanu is a bhikari, He is a beggar, moving from door to door begging radha- prema."

When Radharani heard that last line, She responded thus:

"aslisya va pada-ratam pinastu mam
adarsanan marma-hatam karotu va
yatha tatha va vidadhatu lampato
mat-prana-nathas tu sa eva naparah
Her response to this song is what we know as the final verse of the Siksastikam. It is the expression of a very deep mood of Srimati Radhika.

Soon after, the sannyasi obtains the audience of Radhika, and upon seeing Radha, immediately Krsna's form came, tri-bhanga-lalita. That sannyasi form disappeared.

Visaka was absolutely amazed. She says, "What is this? At first I saw You appear like a sannyasi, but now I am seeing You as Syamasundara, the cowherd boy. I saw You appearing as a golden doll, with Your entire body covered by a golden luster. I now see You holding a flute to Your mouth, with Your lotus eyes moving very restlessly due to various ecstasies."

Much later, in Caitanya lila, Visaka appears as Ramananda Rai. At one point, Lord Caitanya shows Ramananda Rai His Syamasundara form, and what happens? Ramananda faints. Why? As Visaka, He saw the metamorphosis of a Golden Sannyasi to the form of Sri Symasundara, and lo and behold, now again He sees this same transition! He faints.

Radharani was crying, and after the sannyasi reveals Himself to be Krsna, Visakha states, "One day You'll have to cry like that!" And that day comes at the Gambhira when, as a Golden Sannyasi, He is crying in the form of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. Not only that, but Visaka [Ramananda] and Lalita [Swarup Damodara] are there to help Him understand how to cry........just as Srimati Radhika cried.

In order to study Radharani, Krsna lived in Her role and tried to understand Himself. This is the secret of Lord Caitanya's incarnation.

Thus, the paramount internal reason why Krsna comes as Gaura is to understand the Glories of Her Love for Him.

The second reason for His descent is to bring with Him a wonderful present for this world. It is a special gift which is nicely explained in the famous verse below:

anarpita-carim cirat karunayavatirnah kalau
samarpayitum unnatojjvala-rasam sva bhakti-sriyam
harih purata-sundara-dyuti-kadamba sandipitah
sada hrdaya-kandare sphuratu vah saci-nandanah

(Caitanya-caritamrta Adi-lila 1.4)

"May that Lord, who is known as the son of Srimati Sacidevi, be trancendentally situated in the innermost chambers of your heart. Resplendent with the radiance of molten gold, He has appeared in the age of Kali by His causeless mercy to bestow what no avatara ever offered before - service to Srimati Radhika as Her confidential maidservant."

This verse is the mangalam caranam for the entire Sri Caitanya Caritamrita, and everything in that book appearing after it is there to explain this verse.

Srimati Radhika has a very ecstatic mood: "I want to become a dasi of that person who can please Krsna the most. I will become her maidservant". This mellow is Radharani's beautiful mood.

This mood of Radhika has taken so many forms------Rupa Manjari, Rati Manjari, Labanga Manjari, Kasturi Manjari........ Radhika's beautiful mood became so many different milkmaids. However, these particular maidservants of Radhika have only one mood.......that it is Radhika Herself who should meet with Krsna.......because it is actually She who can please Krsna more than anyone else. It is She whom they want to serve. That propensity is called unnatojjvala rasam sva-bhakti-sriyam --- the beauty of Srimati Radharani's mood, otherwise known as manjari-bhava.

Now, when Krsna becomes influenced by the compassionate, tenderhearted mercy of Radha, He develops a desire to bestow upon all jivas the highest mood of love for God that can be given, which is the service mood of the manjaris.

Wanting to give the world this most charitable present is His second internal reason for coming as Sri Gaurasundara. The first internal reason is to taste Radha's mood, and the second internal reason is to distribute the service to that mood. Inotherwords, He comes to taste Radha's bhava, and to give Radha's beauty.

The brilliance of unnata-ujjvala-rasa is unparalleled, and all the acaryas in our Gaudiya sampradaya have come to this world to teach us this beautiful service mood of Radhika's maidservants.

As for the third reason for Gaura's descent, Krsna states it in this very well known verse of the Bhagavad Gita:

"In order to deliver the pious and annihilate the miscreants, as well as to re-establish the principles of religion, I advent Myself millennium after millennium." (Bg. 4.8)

Krsna always has a desire to protect His unalloyed bhaktas, annihilate the wicked, and to re-establish dharma. He therefore descends in every yuga. However, this time when the Lord came as the incarnation for the Kali-yuga[to spread the glories of chanting Hare Krsna], He incorporated another special motive. That motive was to distribute the process of devotional service on the platform of transcendental spontaneous love. "My plenary portions can establish the principles of religion for each age. No one but Me, however, can bestow the kind of loving service performed by the residents of Vraja".

"I shall personally inaugurate the religion of the age --- nama sankirtana, the congregational chanting of the holy name. I shall make the world dance in ecstasy, realizing the four mellows of devotional service."(CC.Adi 3.19)

Using the yuga-dharma [sankirtana] as the vehicle, Krsna came as Mahaprabhu and mercifullly distrubuted vraja-prema to all types of living entities.

Even Krsna could not have induced the forest inhabitants to chant and dance as Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu did. Serpents, elephants, tigers, she-goats..... everyone became inspired by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. He sang, "Krsna, Krsna, Krsna, Krsna, Krsna, Krsna, Krsna he".

So Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu distributed this rare prema, which He did not even give to Brahma, Sankara, Uddhava, and Narada, to all who came to Him. He made serpents into Vraja serpents, deers into Vraja deers, and cows into Vraja cows.

Of course when Krsna was here, He was also merciful, but He gave krsna-prema according to the quality of the devotee's surrender and devotional practice....not less, not more, but in the same quantity, like a scale.

ye yatha mam prapadyante tams tathaiva bhajamy aham mama vartmanuvartante manusyah partha sarvasah

As all surrender unto Me, I reward them accordingly. Everyone follows My path in all respects, O son of Prtha. [B-g. 4.11]

An analogy may be given using a pot. This pot represents our qualification for krsna-prema. When Krsna was present He never gave a pot to anyone. He said, "O, bring your pot. According to the type and size of your pot I will give you that much prema."

Without your qualification, Krsna will not give you prema. If you have committed many offenses He will not give prema. But Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, as the combined mercy of both Radha and Krsna, is giving both the pot and the prema. He and Sri Nityananda Prabhu are so merciful. They have no scale at all. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, Sacinandana Gaurahari, is so merciful that whoever comes to Him receives His mercy.

Without a scale He says, "O, come on, come on. Do you have a pot?"

"No, I have no pot. No qualification."

"Oh, alright then. I will give you the pot and also this nectar, krsna-prema."

So Krsna, deeply absorbed in the mood of audaurya [munificence], comes as Lord Caitanya and re-establishes dharma by propagating the essence of all religion for this age of Kali..... the congregational chanting of Lord Hari's holy names. [This purpose is identified as a secondary, or incidental reason].

Another fascinating reason for the descent of Lord Caitanya is Sri Adwaita Acarya Prabhu. It is He who determines the timing of Krsna's descent. While Krsna was thinking how to fulfill His desires, the time came in Kali-yuga to preach the yuga-dharma, the religion of the age. Concomitantly, Advaita Acarya was preparing a platform for the descent of Krsna and His associates.

Adwaita Acarya was thinking,"The world has become atheistic. One after another people are forgetting Bhagavan, and for Me to rectify them alone is not possible. If it were just a matter of killing demons, well then, no problem." [Sri Adwaita Acarya is the Maha Visnu].

"But to bring devotion to the non-devotees will be very difficult work. Without the shakti of Krsna Himself, it simply cannot be done. And oh! These mayavadis! They only hear what they want to hear. Changing the thinking of these mayavadis will be very difficult. Only if Krsna Himself comes into this world will it be possible. If Sri Krsna were to appear as an incarnation, then He Himself could preach devotion by His own personal example".

Furthermore, Advaita Acarya desired that the Jivas be given krsna-prema. However, He could not do it.... because this is not the function of the Mahavisnu. It is not even possible for Ramacandra, Nrsimha, Kalki, Vamana, or Parasurama. Any of these avataras could establish the yuga-dharma, but they could not give to plants, animals, creepers, or anyone that which Svayam Bhagavan, Vrajendranandana Krsna could give, that is, prema-bhakti. The nama-sankirtana of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and His associates has a special power that can give this vraja-prema. So there is a vast difference between the nama-sankirtana of this Kali-yuga and that of other Kali-yugas. This is a specialty of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, His associates and His followers.

Therefore, Adwaita Acarya Prabhu decided to call Lord Krsna immediately.

It is then that He takes the Tulasi buds and Ganges water and, with great love, offers them to the Lord . With tears flowing from His eyes, He loudly calls Lord Krsna with His prayers, worshiping Krsna beside the Ganges.

At that time while Sri Advaita was earnestly worshiping Him, Krsna, pondering all His own desires, was trying to decide when to descend. He was thinking, "When should I go? Maybe in ten or twenty thousand years? Maybe after 100,000 years?"

But upon hearing Adwaita Acarya's prayer, He came at once. In order to answer the prayers of Sri Adwaita Acarya, Krsna descended immediately as Sri Gaurasundara, and this is the fourth reason why He comes as Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. It is identified as the secondary of the secondary reasons.

We conclude by mentioning the importance of following in the footsteps of Srila Rupa Goswami, Srila Raghunatha Dasa Goswami, and all the other Acaryas in their line, who have the special mood of serving Srimati Radhika. Their service mood is called manjari bhava, and one who follows Srila Rupa Goswami's bhava is called a rupanuga. Following this path means serving, through the disciplic succession, the two personalities, Rupa and Ragunatha. Anyone who desires to engage in rupanuga bhajana must follow in Their footsteps and attain Their mercy.

Nitai-Gaura Krsna Prema Radhe Radhe!

There are four sources for the content of this article:

[1] The Sri Caitanya Caritamrita of Sri Krsnadas Kaviraj Goswami, with translation and elaborate purports by His Divine Grace Om Visnupad Sri Srimad A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabupada: Adi Lila, Chapters 1, 3 and 4. However, most of the subject matter came from Chapters 4 and 3, in that order. The author of this article would like to encourage the reader to once again read those chapters in order to personally experience and appreciate Srila Prabhupada's incomparable delivery of these topics.

[2] Numerous classes and lectures given by Om Visnupad Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayan Maharaja, wherein He carefully and patiently explains the reasons for the Descent of Lord Caitanya. For example, see "The Purpose Of Lord Caitanya's Descent".

[3] The story of the Melodious Golden Sannyasi was told by Om Visnupad Sri Srimad Gour Govinda Swami. Within this present article, that story is abridged. The whole story, as it came from the mouth of Srila Gour Govinda Swamiji, is available here.

[4] A previous, but short article on this subject which was written by this author four years ago. Parts of that document have been folded into this one.

Author's Comment

In order to meet website publication requirements for the article above, it was necessary to omit 98% of the reason why Ramananda fainted. The poor reader was left with a brusque and elementary explanation of what is, in its' completeness, a very recondite and esoteric katha. However, maybe this omission was probably for the best, because the profound reasons behind the fainting of Ramananda are possibly the kind of thing that should not be exposed anywhere and everywhere. Who knows. After all, the first website upon which it was published has a broad readership.

Nevertheless, an impressive understanding of Ramananda's fainting is contained in a book entitled, "The Embankment of Separation", by Srila Gour Govinda Swami. Here is a short synopsis of that lecture: There are three types of milana, which means "union": Bhavi-milana, bhuva-milana and bhavan-milana. [I have also seen "bhuva" spelled as "bhuta"].

Bhavi-milana can be explained this way: In Vrndavan Nidhuvana forest, Radha and Krsna meet together. Krsna is there, and Radha has come to meet Him. That is bhavi-milana. They have not yet united, but they are meeting together. It is not until later that their union will occur. Visakha is in Nidhuvana and, therefore, She has seen this. Now, when Radha and Krsna combine together and become one body, Sri Gauranga, the Rasaraja-Mahabhava form, that is known as bhuva-milana.

As we proceed, you will discover for yourself what is bhavan-milana.

Krsna was thinking, "That mahabhava is there in the core of Her heart and I have to get it, otherwise my desires will never be fulfilled. But how to get it?"

Krsna is very expert in stealing. Srila Rupa Goswami has mentioned that Krsna, who is very expert in stealing, entered into the heart of Radharani and stole it. He did this by putting Radha in the fire of separation. Her heart can be softened the way we soften wax.....with fire. So Krsna, because He is very expert in the art of stealing, first puts Radha into the fire of separation. Then, when Radha felt the fire of separation in Her heart, that wax melted and Krsna was able to enter the heart of Srimati Radharani.

So first He melted it, and then He entered deeper and deeper into the deepest region of the heart of Srimati Radhika.

Ramananda Raya told Lord Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu: At first I saw you appear like a sannyasi, but now I am seeing you as Syamasundara, a blackish cowherd boy. Now what do I see: I see you appearing like a golden doll, and Your whole Syama body appears covered by a golden lustre. [CC madya 8.268,269] Krsna is inside. That Syama form is inside, covered up with the effulgence of the golden doll[Radharani]. That is Gaura. Therefore it is said, antar Krsna bahir gaura.

Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu reveals to Raya Ramananda His Rasaraja-Mahabhava form and how Nandanandana Rasaraja Krsna is entering into the heart of Varsabhanavi-devi Mahabhava Radharani. Raya Ramananda[Visakha] had never seen this before, and now he was seeing it directly before his eyes. This is so wonderful that he fainted. As Visakha, He had seen bhavi-milana, and the transformation of a Golden Sannyasi into Syamasundara, but he had not seen the wonders of bhuva-milana and bhavan-milana.

This is the profound understanding of that event, as given to us by His Divine Grace, Srila Gour Govinda Maharaja. This present synopsis is a telescoped condensation of His complete lecture which appears in "The Embankment of Separation". [Gopal Jiu Publications].

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