7 August 2020

Astonishing childhood pastimes of little Krsna in Gokula

Hare Krsna! 840. You must be thinking what is 840? It’s locations. Haribol! Thus you are one of the locations or destinations or participants.

Gopala Gopala Devki Nandan Gopala

He is already Devaki-Nandan. Now He has reached Gokula so Gokula Dhama ki Jai or Nanda Gokula. Call it Nanda Gokula. Actually it is Nanda Maharaja’s Gokula.

Krsna jinka nama hai, Gokula jinka dhama hai
Aise Sri Bhagavana ko (mera) barambara pranam hai

Yasoda jinki maiya hai, Nandaji bapaiya hai
Aise Sri Gopal ko (mera) barambara pranam hai
(Bhajan – Krsna jinka naam hai)

In this song only this part is related to Gokula. Further on the song is related to other places and other Bhavas (rasas). Here, if we see Nandaji Bapaiya hai or Yasoda Jinki maiya hai, the rasa which is going on here is called Vatsalya Rasa. In Gokula Vatsalya Rasa is dominant. Krsna will live in Gokula for four years and eight months as written by Srila Vishwanath Chakravarthy Thakur.

As He grew up in Gokula, He developed friendship with the neighbourhood children and also began to play with them. Thus began the Makhan Chori (butter stealing) lila. That’s when Sakhya Rasa begins. However the primary rasa of Gokula is Vatsalya Rasa.

Krsna Kanhaiya Lala ki Jai! Hati ghoda palkhi— Jai Kanhaiya lala ki

Who came to Nanda Baba’s house? You know Aisvarya? Nanda Ke Ghar Ananda Bhayo. Joy appeared. By now everyone had received this news. It was now early morning of Navami. The birth had taken place at midnight on Asthami in Mathura. After that Vasudeva brings Vaasudeva to Gokula. The next morning Nanda Baba came to know. As soon as he knew he was ecstatic and immediately arranged for all the preparations for the celebration. It is also known as ‘Jat-Karma’ sanskar. As soon as a child is born, a ritual ‘Jat-Karma’ sanskar is performed. Thus all preparations for ‘Jat-karma’ sanskar were done.

The news was sent to the whole of Vraja. Good morning news! That morning’s good news had reached all the houses. How was the news conveyed? Bhagavan knows or Nanda Baba knows, how it was done? We have no experience of this in this world. Actually we have experienced a little bit through the internet, with just a push of a button or via a computer we send the message. But then there was no such computer, no internet , no SMS, no emails but still in each house, the Vraja vasis came to know that …

Nand ke ghar anand bhayo!

Nanda Maharaja then started preparing for the ceremony. That is why the ceremony is called ‘Nandotsava’. Actually this Nandotsava is a celebration of Sri Krsna’s birth. We can say that the first Sri Krsna Janmastami was celebrated by Nanda Maharaja on Navami and not on astami.

Then from all the villages, from each neighbourhood and from each house Vraja vasis started running towards Gokula. There was only one destination. These Vraja vasis started going to Gokula. They were all well dressed for the ceremony and moving very fast. They were in a hurry as they wanted to reach soon. They did not want to be late and they were very eager to take darsana of Kanhaiya.

bhagavān api viśvātmā
viditvā kaṁsajaṁ bhayam
yadūnāṁ nija-nāthānāṁ
yogamāyāṁ samādiśat

To protect the Yadus, His personal devotees, from Kaṁsa’s attack, the Personality of Godhead, Viśvātmā, the Supreme Soul of everyone, ordered Yoga-māyā as follows. ( SB. 10.2.6)

Nath or pran-nath, master of all Yadus, Vanshi or Brija vasi is born, so everyone is just drawn towards Gokula. Sukhadev Goswami has said,

śrī-śuka uvāca
ekadā gṛha-dāsīṣu
yaśodā nanda-gehinī
nirmamantha svayaṁ dadhi
yāni yānīha gītāni
tad-bāla-caritāni ca
dadhi-nirmanthane kāle
smarantī tāny agāyata

Śrī Śukadeva Gosvāmī continued: One day when mother Yaśodā saw that all the maidservants were engaged in other household affairs, she personally began to churn the yogurt. While churning, she remembered the childish activities of Kṛṣṇa, and in her own way she composed songs and enjoyed singing to herself about all those activities. (SB 10.9.1-2)

Old aged Gopis and young Gopis were going very eagerly and so fast their earrings were moving to and fro and the flowers decorated on their hair were falling out. Because of these flowers falling from their hair, all the roads leading to Gokula were covered with flowers. Beds of roses and many different types of flowers covered the road. From Sukhadev Goswami’s writing, we can imagine how many ladies and gentlemen were going to Gokula. We have come to know that they were going fast and eagerly. Sukhadev Goswami is trying to draw our attention towards their devotion, their eagerness while going to Gokula and while running all of them were saying, – Nanda Ke Ghar Ananda bhayo!

They reached Gokul and celebrated a very special ceremony. All of them were giving blessings to Bal Krsna, to Ladu Gopala – ‘Ayushmaan bhava!’ It is their feeling to bless Him this way, but actually the child is never going to die. He is immortal. Some may say He is a child. He plays like a child and then He becomes a small child, and then the teenage phase, but actually He is immortal. Everyone is congratulating Him in different ways.They are even playing with milk, curd, butter, colours and by throwing it on each other. They are expressing their joy by throwing colours in the Ranga Pancami, playing with gulal or colours during Holi. Here Sukahdev Goswami said that, Krsna is born so by throwing curd, butter, milk on each other or by applying this on oneself is the way in which a special Nandotsava was celebrated.

We also get some idea of this. Swasti Vachan was recited, different types of music was being played, showering of flowers was going on, like that. Specially all their hearts were pleased and they were showing their pleasure and happiness in different ways, by dancing or singing and finally by honouring prasada. Srila Prabhupada would say dance, sing and eat.

Krishna consciousness is very sweet and simple. What do we do in Krishna consciousness— dance and sing and when are tired, we sit down and ‘sei annamrta pava’, we eat, then we do not sleep, but glorify Radha Krsna. This is Krishna consciousness. All of this is happening in that ceremony. They were singing, dancing and having prasada, a birthday party feast. Nandotsava is Krsna’s first birthday party. Then they glorified Krsna only, as Radha had not yet appeared. That was a glorious birthday party. Initially Krsna will appear and then in Raval Radhashtami will be celebrated.

This is Krsna-astami. Notice the arrangement between the two. Krsna appeared on Astami and then Radha also appeared on Astami. One is called Krsna-astami and another is called Radha-astami. Now Krsna Janmastami is approaching. All of you prepare for that. Everybody – devotees in temples, congregations get ready. Prepare for the festival. Nanda baba completed preparations for a huge festival in a few hours. In the early morning (brahma muhurta) he was informed that a child is born. By morning 8:00 or 9:00 people arrived and a festival began. He had only a couple of hours. Nanda Maharaja prepared a grand celebration in just two, three hours. We are not able to perform such work here. We need many, many days and months to prepare for a grand Sri Krsna Janmastami festival. At least prepare something and offer it in your mind.

Now Krsna will stay in Gokula and it is here that slowly various pastimes will be played out. When He was only 6 days old the Chhati ceremony was being carried out. Putana came at that time and it was when vinashaya ca dushkrutam started. In this Gokula Putana will be killed. Aghasur and Trinavarta
will also be killed. These three major incidences are going to happen. Krsna is a small child, but He is performing huge tasks. They were very notorious and infamous demons. They were the most sinful amongst demons. For Krsna Kanhaiya killing of these demons was very simple. It was easy fun for Krsna to kill them. He is actually a child, but this will not make a difference. Even as a child He is purna-krsna.

oṁ pūrṇam adaḥ pūrṇam idaṁ
pūrṇāt pūrṇam udacyate
pūrṇasya pūrṇam ādāya
pūrṇam evāvaśiṣyate

The Personality of Godhead is perfect and complete, and because He is completely perfect, all emanations from Him, such as this phenomenal world, are perfectly equipped as complete wholes. Whatever is produced of the Complete Whole is also complete in itself. Because He is the Complete Whole, even though so many complete units emanate from Him, He remains the complete balance. ( Invocation mantra of Isopanishad)

aisvaryasya samagrasya viryasya yasasah sriyah
jnana-vairagyayos caiva sannam bhaga itingana

Bhagavan, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is thus defined by Parasara Muni as one who is full in six opulences—who has full strength, fame, wealth, knowledge, beauty, and renunciation. (Visnu Purana 6.5.47)

He is complete with all opulences. No problem even if He is a child. He is capable of doing all the things and He is with complete knowledge. He is the strongest, completely renunciated. It is not that slowly, as He grows up these qualities will increase and since He is a child now, He is weak. No, this is not the case. Even if Krsna is a child, Krsna is Krsna. These are Krsna’s pastimes as a child.

When Nanda Maharaja would say to Krsna ‘Son, bring my shoes. Come on hurry up, I need to go,’ then Krsna would bring the shoes. He would try to lift the shoes. They were very heavy for him. This is one bhava of Nanda Maharaja. Nanda Maharaja asked Him to bring shoes as He is his son. Do you also ask your children? Sri Nityananda, do you ask your son to bring your shoes or do this for me, do that for me ? Nanda baba has the authority and as He is his son, so why not ? He can bring the shoes.

Nanda Maharaja never thinks like this “Oh Krsna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead! Oh, He’s Bhagavan, full of opulences. Please accept my obeisances.” But we offer obeisances.

Aise Sri Bhagavana ko (mera) barambara pranam hai, but Nanda Maharaja does not offer obeisances. Nanda Maharaja gives orders – ‘Hurry up! Bring the shoes.’ It is heavy for Krsna. He performs such childhood pastimes. Since I am a child I’m unable to lift the shoes. It is difficult. If the shoes were light, He would have brought it easily, the way we carry bags — but the shoes are so heavy. He tries to carry it and keep it on His shoulder and if it’s heavier, then He keeps it on His head. Then He brought it. “Father, here are your shoes. Please take this.” Some devotee poet has said, “Let them read the glories of Bhagavan in the Vedas or Puranas. Let them worship Bhagavan, but I will worship the Lotus feet of Nanda Baba in whose house Krsna plays. Nanda Baba is only worshipable for me.”

Here He is not able to lift the shoes. But after a few years He will lift the whole Govardhan Mountain. Even if Krsna is small or old, He remains the same and performs pastimes like not being able to lift the shoes, but at the same time He was able to lift the mountain in Gokula. Still He pretends that He is grown up and has become stronger, so now He can lift the mountain. So many sweet pastimes have happened in Gokula. Sukadev Goswami has written, Bal charitanchi

When Yasoda is churning the curd, she sings Balacharitani cha. She sings and remembers the sweet pastimes performed by her son till then.

In Gokula pastimes of butter stealing happens. Krsna is famous as the butter thief. Krsna Kanhaiya Lal Ki jaya! Krsna’s favourite is butter and will always remain His favourite. Always offer butter to Kanhaiya. Make butter for Kanhaiya in your house. Wake Him up, just like Yasoda did.

Uthi uthi gopala
Nand Ke Lala
Uthi uthi gopala

Why do we need to wake Him up? He is a child. He will wake up only when His mother wakes Him. You also wake up your Bhagavan. Do your duties at home in Vatsalya bhava, the same as Yasoda.

Now the name giving ceremony will be performed in Gokula. Gargacarya Muni will come for this ceremony. Then the name giving ceremony of Krsna and Balarama is done together. Krsna Balarama will perform different pastimes in Gokula together. One day Krsna will eat mud. We do not know if he had eaten the mud or not, but someone complained about it. Balarama also said, ‘Krsna, You have eaten mud.’
Kanhaiya said, ‘No! No! Balarama is lying because he does not like me.’
Yasoda said, ‘If You said that you have not eaten mud, then open Your mouth.’ When He opened His mouth Yasoda saw the whole universe in His mouth. All these events are wonderful. Wonderful Krsna! These events are called pastimes. We come to know from these pastimes that this child is not an ordinary child. He is amazing, wonderful Krsna. He is Bhagavan. Sri Krsna Balarama Ki Jai.!

Krsna Balarama played with Their friends. One day when Balarama was not at home, Yasoda tied Krsna to a mortar because this butter stealer stole butter from his own house. Krsna was caught red handed. No, not red handed, actually white handed. When a thief commits a crime like stealing or murder with weapons like a knife his hands are red. If he kills someone, then his hands are red. But Kanhaiya steals butter, so butter is actually white or golden and so His hands are white. His hands are still covered with butter, so He was caught white handed.

Then one day one Gopi forcibly brought Krsna in front of Yashoda. She was holding Him tightly by His hand. She said, ‘Here is your Kanhaiya, the butter stealer.’ She pushed Kanhaiya towards Yasoda. When Yasoda saw the child she said, ‘Have you gone mad? Remove the veil from your face and look.’ In Vraja the Gopis always cover their faces with their saree. They always walk with a covered face. Then this Gopi uncovered her face and saw. Yasoda had said, ‘This is not my son. He is your son. This is Kanhaiya.’ Kanhaiya became the son of the Gopi in his place. Then what would have been the condition of that poor Gopi? Then again she covered her face and was returning to her home. Krsna was waiting for her and He said, ‘Look , today I became your son. But if you do it again, I will became your husband.’ After this no one was able to stop Krsna’s butter stealing pastime. Then Yasoda told everyone in whose houses butter was stolen, to keep their butter in some dark place. Then the Gopis started doing that. But still the stealing didn’t stop. Then those Gopis said to Yasoda, “You dress up Krsna with so many ornaments, jewels, pearls, garlands. When He comes in the dark, because of the light of His ornaments He is able to see everything and hence the stealing is not stopped.” Yasoda agreed to remove the jewellery. Then she started dressing up Krsna with less ornaments. Still the stealing was not stopped because the light in the dark was not from Krsna’s ornaments, but from Krsna Himself, from His body. Koti surya sama prabha or Brahma Jyoti. Many, many lights. Bhagavan is like that.

raso ‘ham apsu kaunteya
prabhāsmi śaśi-sūryayoḥ
praṇavaḥ sarva-vedeṣu
śabdaḥ khe pauruṣaṁ nṛṣu

O son of Kuntī, I am the taste of water, the light of the sun and the moon, the syllable oṁ in the Vedic mantras; I am the sound in ether and ability in man. ( BG. 7.8)

Bhagavan said, ‘The light from the sun is due to Me. The light from the moon is due to Me.’ Prabha means a special, bright light. Asmi means I am. I am the source of light. Which light – śaśi-sūryayoḥ

Actually Kanhaiya is able to see wherever He goes because wherever He goes the light goes with Him. He never requires a torchlight or the torch from a mobile.

kṛṣṇa — sūrya-sama; māyā haya andhakāra
yāhāṅ kṛṣṇa, tāhāṅ nāhi māyāra adhikāra

“Kṛṣṇa is compared to sunshine, and māyā is compared to darkness. Wherever there is sunshine, there cannot be darkness. As soon as one takes to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, the darkness of illusion (the influence of the external energy) will immediately vanish.(CC. Madhya 22.31)

yāhāṅ kṛṣṇa, tāhāṅ nāhi māyāra adhikāra. In this way Krsna performed various pastimes in Gokula which we should hear and understand. We should know the Lord and love Him. When you understand the Lord, you will love Him. You don’t know Him, so you don’t love Him. Then you hate Him. So keep hearing.

Hare Krishna Hare Krishna
Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama
Rama Rama Hare Hare.