Some Gopis were in the mood of a servant with folded hands, some were in the mood of a maidservant, some in the mood of a beloved like a paramour, but they all began to approach Krsna and meet and speak with Him. Some placed Krsna’s hands on their shoulders. Some held His arms that were smeared with candana paste. They took His left arm and placed it on their right shoulder and with different ointments began to anoint His limbs. Some Gopis who were contrary and prakada (very bold), were looking at Krsna with angry eyes. In this way all of Krsna’s different beloveds, interacted with Him according to their different moods.

The prominent gopis began to think and serve Krsna through their bhava (loving mood) and glances. They were so immersed in ananda-rasa, because of touching Krsna in their hearts. The daksina-nayikas, those who were in a rightest submissive mood – came to Krsna and were holding His hands and serving Him in various ways. Those who were in vamya-bhava (contrary or bold mood) were looking at Krsna in a contrary way. Those who were in neutral mood served and engaged with Him in these different ways. Some of the Vraja-sundaris – beautiful gopis – took the tambula pan that He had chewed and began to take that. Some Gopis sat at His feet and placed His feet on their breasts.

Srila Jiva Goswami says here that some Gopis took the tambula that Krsna had chewed with two hands. Vrinda Devi had arranged before in all the kunjas, all the various paraphernalia for service.

As I said, however much the Gopis were lamenting in separation, still there was nothing lacking. When we are sad or disturbed we will go and hide somewhere and cover ourselves with a chaddar or go here and there in the jungle and lament and cry, or tell someone about how sad and sorry we are. Nowadays we will send emails to our friends, or will call our friends and tell them how much we have become maddened and upset. But the Gopis were never like this. They were never distanced from their service, they were always prepared. Therefore they had all varieties of paraphernalia like flower garlands, sandalwood paste, etc. were ready and prepared.

Srila Jiva Goswami Prabhu says the gopis had tambula and offered it to Krsna and then took His remnants. They took very nice, cool fragrant water. Why? Because Krsna had wandered for a long time in the forest so they gave Him this nice, cool drink. There were those who were mrdu (mild mannered), and others who were submissive, and some were right and left wing. The left wing Gopis were very bold and contrary and they liked to control Krsna and discipline Him with their love.

Other Gopis were submissive and through their service, were serving Krsna and trying to please Him. They placed seats in the kunjas of their hearts for Krsna as well. Some Gopis were standing at a distance and not speaking at this time. Some Gopis came and embraced His lotus feet and placed them on their breasts. Some Gopis placed Krsna’s arms on their shoulders. Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura explains those who were grtha-sneha (with ghee-like affection) who were on the side of Candravali, were submissive. The other Gopis who had madhu-sneha (honey-like affection) were in the contrary mood.


Some Gopis, overwhelmed with love, were clenching their teeth and biting their lips as if they were very angry, and their eyes had become powerful arrows, shooting glances of love. It was as if they were saying, “Oh now just show us what You will do. Now we have surrounded You on all sides. See if You can disappear now. We are now prepared. See if You can escape us now.”

These Gopis made their eyebrows like bows pulled back, arched very high. Their lips became cut by their teeth because they were clenched so tight. It as like they were chewing Krsna. They were very angry ladies. If you have ever seen a very angry lady then you may understand, they had become very strong and powerful. They were thinking, “What will we tell Him? I will say this and that.” But no words came out of their mouths. They just looked at Him with extremely sharp glances, thinking of all the things they wanted to say to Him.

Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura says one Gopi was clenching her teeth, biting her lips and shooting arrows from her arched eyebrows. It was like she was trying to pierce Krsna. She said, “Oh crest jewel of cheaters. Your love is like the strongest snake poison and You have injected us with that poison. You gave us this poison and then ran away thinking, ‘Oh I have given them poison, now if they die then that is good.’ But we did not die. We are still alive. Now what will You do? You tried to kill us, thinking, ‘Oh I have given them poison and now they will die very soon.’ You left thinking we will die, but now we have new life, so what will You do now? Where will You run now? We didn’t think You would leave before, we weren’t ready for You to disappear. But now we are ready and have surrounded You, so try and leave now.”

The Gopis tied a knot in their shawls or saris and then tied themselves to Krsna. Some tied Krsna to Radharani, and some tied Him to other Gopis. In this way they all tied Krsna to one another and He was bound. They said, “This is not only some show. We have completely bound You now and You cannot escape. You will have to be punished for Your sins.” Some gopis were burning in their anger towards Krsna born out of their love for Him. Some gopis, being very mild mannered and submissive, acted in other ways.

Srila Jiva Goswami Prabhu says Krsna is Vraja-guala, a simple sweet cowherd boy. However these gopis did not see Him like that. They were saying, “Oh You are Surasena-Krsna, a warrior. Some of the Gopis had this mood that He was like a warrior and said, “Oh You are like a coward. You are running away from the battlefield and hiding.” These Gopis taunted Him. “You came to love’s battlefield and were defeated. You are so weak, and such a coward that now You have run away. Why did You call us all here? You called us here to the battle. If You are so weak and want to hide like a weakling then You shouldn’t have called us here and met with us in the first place.”

The submissive Gopis in daksina-bhava came before Krsna and accepted His tambula and held His hands and began to serve Him and gave Him candana. Krsna was surrounded on all sides. Some Gopis were complete absorbed in a loving anger mood, and with their eyes shot anger arrows at Him.

The Visnu-purana explains that some of the Gopis spoke to Him with an angry mood. Some Gopis drank the honey of the beauty of His lotus face. Some were very angry, and some were very soft and submissive. In this way the various Gopis had different moods and interacted with Krsna differently.

The gopis with a strong, bold mood are called lalita-anubhava. They are in the line or mood of Lalita. Those who were svadina – always subordinate, were speaking with Krsna in a subordinate way, or meeting in that way. Some gopis were burning in their anger towards Krsna born out of their love for Him. Some gopis, being very mild mannered and submissive, acted in other ways.

Guruvarga ki Jaya! Srila Gurudeva ki Jaya! (Excerpted from the up and coming Bhaktabandhav book publication, “Rasa Pancadhyayi”. For more info contact: [email protected] )


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