Day 161: Gaurābda 532, Nārāyaṇa Māsa – Ṣaṣṭhī 12 Jan 2019 – Saturday

Bhakti Bullets

Bhakti Bullets

What is vyāsa? If a line is drawn from any point of a circle, it touches the middle point and crosses to the other side of the circle—that is called vyāsa. So, vyāsa means one who preaches all over the world. He preaches that we are part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa, eternal servants of Kṛṣṇa, but that we have forgotten this. Vyāsāsana is a seat for one who preaches everywhere in the world that we are eternal servants of Kṛṣṇa and we have now forgotten Him—and that is why His illusory māyā has forcefully thrown us into this world.

Spoken by Srila Gurudeva, January 12, 2010 Brazil

Prema Flame

Prema Flame

Rasa Varsa

In Preparation for Love’s Feast – Govinda-lilamrta

When the gopīs arrive in Nandagrāma, Yaśodā Mātā is waiting there for them. Seeing Śrīmatī Rādhārānī, she embraces Her, and smells Her hair. She kisses Her face and says, “You must be very tired, having come from so far. We have some refreshments. Please come to the kitchen and look over all the preparations to be made. Please start the cooking.”

Hearing Yaśodā Mātā’s affectionate speech, Śrīmatī Rādhārānī is very happy. In the autumn season, the weather is cool, and the water is clear, likewise, anyone who comes near Yaśodā Mātā becomes very peaceful and cool by her vātsalya-sneha, motherly affection. With Yaśodā Mātā’s sweet speech, the gopīs become full of humility. The affection of vātsalya-sneha is so powerful that it even attracts the Supreme Lord. It washes away all His moods of opulence, and makes Him a small boy, Gopāla. He is the Supreme Lord, Parabrahma, but He forgets that. He forgets that He is in Vaikuṇṭha and that He is the Supreme Personality, the controller of countless universes—now He is a small boy Gopāla. In this way also, the power of svarūpa-śakti is so great, She is the power of the Supremely Powerful Parabrahma, but still, when Śrīmatī Rādhārānī comes before Yaśodā Mātā, the power of Yaśodā Mātā’s motherly affection makes the Supreme Potency svarūpa-śakti, Śrīmatī Rādhārānī and Her divine majesty appear as a small child. Yaśodā Mātā takes Her in her lap and smells Her hair. How amazing is this?

The guru-varga have this power, therefore, great personalities of this world, like great politicians, philosophers, renowned scientists and doctors, forget their high position and become like children, very small and humble before the guru-varga. This is the great personality present with those who have this vātsalya-sneha, parental affection. That affection has so much power—it controls not only Śrīmatī Rādhārānī but all Her sakhīs. In other places they are very powerful, but coming to Yaśodā Mātā and touching her feet, she takes them in her lap and smells their hair, and all their strength is hidden, and they are like small innocent girls in the care of their mother.

Yaśodā Mātā says, “You have come from different places, like Ciksaulī, Ūṅcāgaon, Kāmaī and Karehlā. Please make the famous preparations from your own area for Kṛṣṇa. Kīsori Rādhā is very famous in Vraja-maṇḍala, She knows all processes to cook the best of dishes. Everyone should follow Her guidance. Don’t do anything independently. Everything will be the sweetest of the sweet if you follow Rādhā.”

The sakhīs all desire to follow the advice of Yaśodā Mātā.

Yaśodā Mātā says, “Make the best of dishes, with the sweetest fragrances, and which are good for digestion. May Kṛṣṇa eat very nicely, this is my desire.”

Yaśodā Mātā continues, “I will divide you into different groups. One group will makes salty dishes, and another will make preparations made of yogurt, like dahi-vaḍā, rāitā and śrīkhaṇḍa.”

Yaśodā Mātā divides the gopīs in many groups, and designates them into making different types of items with specific ingredients.

She says, “Your group will make items with only pure ghee. Your group will make sweet savories coated with sugar syrup. Your group will make vegetable dishes, and pakoḍas. But everyone must be under the guidance of Rādhā.”

Yaśodā Mātā has full faith in Rādhārānī, and says, “Rādhe, You work very hard, I know this. Simply if You look and touch everything, it will become full of nectar, the sweetest of the sweet, softest of the soft, and best of the best. Please make amṛta-keli, karpūra-keli, kṣīra-sāgar, rasāvalī, anna-rasāvalī, and rasa-tāriyā. Make all the best dishes for Kṛṣṇa. He will be very greedy to eat this, and will ask for more and more. Then I will understand Your cooking is the best. If we only give Him once, and He doesn’t want seconds, something may have been lacking. But if He eats everything, and then wants more and more, then it can be seen that dish was especially delicious. O Rādhe, I know that there is no greater cook in the three worlds than You. Anything You make will be very tasteful.”

Yaśodā Mātā further said, “Dear Kiśorī, my son Kṛṣṇa likes pañcāmṛta. Please arrange this.”

This is a drink made from yogurt, ghee, sugar candy, milk, honey and spices like camphor, cardamom, black pepper, cinnamon and cloves.

When eating, many different small bowls are placed with different spices. In some place, there is one powdered, and in another bowl there may be some ghee and honey mixed or yogurt and honey. In another place, there is some crushed black pepper and salt, and the powder of cumin seeds. While eating one chooses these small spices according to one’s own desires. Yaśodā Mātā asked Rādhārānī to also make some of these dry items.

Yaśodā Mātā then said to the Lalitā-devī, “Make a rasālā.”

How is this? One has a small plate, and when one takes some of this powder and licks it, it cools the brain and body and helps the digestion. It has some sweetness, and is also hot and sour, like Mexican candy, full of chili, tamarind, salt, and sugar. In Mexico, they mix all this together and make big candies, and chewing this, people begin to sweat and cry. But they chew it, and cannot give it up. This is Mexican food. They take so much chili with sugar and tamarind.

Yaśodā Mātā says, “O Tuṅgavidyā, make curd for rasagullās.”

To prepare good rasagullās, one needs pure cow milk, and to make that milk into nice curd, they have to know very well the process. First the milk must be heated, and lemons squeezed and mixed with some water and kept ready. When the milk boils, it is taken off the flame, and once it cools a little bit, the lemon juice is mixed in with the milk and slowly gently stirred. By this process then the curds will be very soft. If the lemon juice is mixed while the milk is boiling very hot in the top and stirred in, then the curd will be hard. Hard curd cannot make good rasagullās or any milk sweets.

In Mahāprabhu’s Navadvīpa-dhāma, the sandeśa is very soft and tasty. It is not possible to make it from hard curd. Tuṅgavidyā knows how to make very nice chenā, or curd, as well as gulābjāmuns, rasagullās, sandeśa and so forth.

Yaśodā Mātā says to Citrā-devi, “Make miśrīkhaṇḍa.”

When one goes to Dāūjī, Dāūjī Mahārāja eats this candy, or sugar rock candy. Some is reddish, and some is white. It is very special.

Yaśodā Mātā says, “Citrā, make miśrī. Raṅgadevī, make khaṇḍa-sāra and pīṭhā-pānā. Sudevī, make kṣīra-sāra.”

How does one make kṣīra-sāra? One boils down milk until it is thick, and mixes in the powders of many nuts, like cashews and almonds, and boils this down with some sugar. Another dish is made with the white urad dāl. First the dāl is stir fried in ghee, and then powdered, and then is mixed with roasted sesame seed powder. This is boiled down with milk until it becomes thick. It has a very good smell. One only gives a little bit of honey to it. This is called kṣīra-sāra. This will have a very nice aroma, and is very tasty.

Yaśodā says, “Vasantī, make phenikā.”

In Vraja-maṇḍala, for only one month they make this pheni and ghevar. These are very special sweets. In Jaipur, Govindadeva eats this every day.

One time, the king of Jaipur was arranging the wedding of his daughter. In his palace, he had built temples for the prominent Deities who had been rescued from Vṛndāvana during foreign attack. He had temples in his palace for all the Deities, and anything that was cooked was first offered to Them. After that, everyone would take prasāda.

On the evening of the princess’s marriage, many people came for the feast and celebration. So many preparations were cooked, and everything was presented in many bowls and plates to the guests. They made many drinks, sweets and different dishes. When all the guests sat down to eat, they looked down at their plates and saw everything was sand and bits of stone.

The people became very angry, “The king invited us all, and now he is giving us this rubbish!” They were very angry and got up to leave.

When the king heard that his guests were all leaving, he came and saw for himself that this was true. Greatly distressed, He ran before Govindadeva and prostrated himself. He saw that in front of the Lord all the plates and dishes were present.

What had happened was, that day, whatever was made for the wedding had been sent directly to the tables for the guests and not to Govindadeva. Also, on a general basis, the foodstuffs offered were not so elaborate as the king had arranged for his daughter’s marriage.

The king saw Govindadeva was smiling, as if to say, “You did not give Me these nice preparations? You gave your guests as if they were more special than I? You neglected Me. But now just see, everything is before Me.”

In front of Govindadeva, all the special items were present and only sand and stones were there for the guests.

“Please forgive me,” the king said, “I will never do this again. Everything is for You, I did wrong. I have no good intelligence.”

The guests then came before Govindadeva in an angry mood, and the pūjārī gave them each one plate of prasādam. The king sat there weeping, while all the guests ate and became happy. Then the princess’s marriage ceremony was performed before Govindadeva.

From that day, every day Govindadeva gets special items like kacori, pheni-ghever, halavā and barphī. Every day, even now, He is offered 56 preparations in the afternoon. From that day, the king properly served the Lord.

Now, Yaśodā Mātā says, “Raṅgadevī, make pīṭhā-pānā; Sudevi, make kṣira-sāra; Vasantī, make phenikā; Kuṇḍalikā, make jalebīs.”

The jalebīs that Kundalikā makes are not like those we see now in Vraja. If you go to Jaipur, in Rājasthāna, you will see how they make proper jalebīs. They make them very thin, and have many, many small loops on the outside. They make them very large and beautiful. Outside it is very crunchy, and within it is very soft and juicy. Kuṇḍalikā knows how to make these.

Yaśodā Mātā said, “Kadambarī, make candrakānta and candrakalā.”

These are also available in the sweet shops, along with bāluśāi and gujiyā.

Yaśodā Mātā says, “Lasikā, make rice laḍḍūs.”

A very tasty sweet can be made of rice that is fried, made into powder, and mixed with ghee and guḍ (cooked down cane juice) and roasted cumin powder. This mix is pressed into round laḍḍūs which are very soft and tasty.

“Komala and Susati,” Yaśodā Mātā says, “Make gujiyā.”

This gujiyā’s shape is like the first stage of the moon—a crescent. There is also a wonderful white colored sweet called mundi-piśtaka. Komala and Susati are expert in making these sweets.

Yaśodā Mātā next says, “Śaśimukhī, make yogurt preparations like dahi-vadā, and rasa-vadā. Sumukhī, make sarka-paṭikā and preparations made with sesame; Maṇimatī, make wheat preparations.”

A simple but pleasant preparation is made with wheat flour roasted in ghee and mixed into milk to make a type of kṣīra.

With white flour and sugar cooked in ghee, along with pistachios and other special ingredients, a type of caramel cake is made typically in the winter season. It is called chakni and is very costly.

Yaśodā Mātā says, “Manoramī, make manohara-laḍḍu. Ratnamalī, make moticura-laḍḍu; Mādhavī, make til-kadamba. O Vṛnda, make mūṅg-laḍḍu.”

For this laḍḍu, mūṅg-dāl is soaked, pasted, and stir-fried with ghee. It is mixed with nuts, sugar and milk, and is boiled down into a paste. When the paste is dry, they make it into laḍḍūs, and cover it with coconut powder. This is called mūṅg-pīṭhā, mūṅg-phali or mūṅg-laḍḍu.

Yaśodā Mātā requests Rambhā to make a preparation made of ripe bananas, yogurt, roasted chickpea flour, and mango juice. All this is boiled down together makes very tasty fruit sweetball.

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