Chapter 33: The Râsa Dance
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    Welcome, Guest · RSS 2019-07-19, 2:56 AM

    Chapter 33: The Râsa Dance

    (1) S'rî S'uka said: 'The gopîs, thus hearing the most charming words of the Supreme Lord gave, with their eager hearts fulfilled by [their touching] His limbs, up on the [cherished] distress of their having been deserted. (2) Right there engaged Govinda in a dance [a râsa, or sport] in which the faithful jewels among women satisfied joined in linking their arms together.

    (3-4) The festive play commenced with the gopîs in a circle that was decorated with, in their midst, Krishna, the Controller of the Mystic Union, who held the women, two by two present beside Him, by their necks. At that moment was the sky crowded by hundreds of celestial carriers belonging to the denizens of heaven and their wives whose minds were carried away in the eagerness of their respect. (5) Kettledrums then resounded and a rain of flowers fell down while the chief singers of heaven with their wives sang of His immaculate glories. (6) In the circle of the dance there was a great rumor of the bracelets, ankle and waist bells of the women being together with their Beloved. (7) The Supreme Lord, the son of Devakî, there with them appeared as handsomely splendid as an exquisite [blue] sapphire in the midst of golden ornaments. (8) The way they placed their feet, by the gestures of their hands, their smiles and playful eyebrows and their bending waists; by their moving breasts, their clothes, their earrings on their necks and their perspiring faces; with the braids of their hair, their belts tied tight and their singing about Him, shone they in the role of Krishna's consorts as streaks of lightening amidst the clouds. (9) Loudly sang they by whose song the entire universe is pervaded with their colored throats, dancing joyfully, delighting in their dedication to the touch of Krishna. (10) One gopî together with Krishna raising [her voice relative to His] in pure tones of close harmony was praised by Him who pleased exclaimed: 'excellent, excellent!' and another one who vibrated along with a special metre He gave a lot of special attention. (11) A certain gopî [Râdhâ probably], with her bracelets and flowers slipping, stood fatigued by the dance aside and grasped with her arm the shoulder of the Master of the Ceremony ['He who holds the club']. (12) Somewhere else placed one Krishna's arm, that was as fragrant as a blue lotus, upon her shoulder and smelling the sandalwood kissed she it with her hairs standing on end. (13) Some other one beautiful with the glittering of her, from the dancing, shaking earrings placed her cheek next to His and was given the bethel He had chewed. (14) One of them who with Krishna standing at her side was dancing and singing with tinkling ankle and waistbells, feeling tired placed Acyuta's auspicious lotushand on her breasts. (15) The gopîs with His arms around their necks having attained the Infallible Lord, the Exclusive Lover of the Goddess of Fortune, as their lover, delighted in singing about Him. (16) With the lotus flowers behind their ears, the locks of their hair decorating their cheeks, the beauty of their perspiring faces and the reverberation of the harmonious sounds of their armlets and bells, danced the gopîs, with the flowers braided in their hair scattered, to the hum of the bees together with the Supreme Lord in the arena of the dance. (17) He, the Master of the Goddess of Fortune, thus with embraces, touches of His hand, affectionate glances and broad playful smiles enjoyed the young women of Vraja just like a boy does playing with His own reflection. (18) From the bodily contact with Him overflowing in their senses was it for the Vraja ladies not easy or possible to keep their hair, dresses and the cloths covering their breasts in good order so that their flower garlands and decorations were in disarray, o best of the Kurus. (19) Seeing Krishna playing became the goddesses hovering in the sky entranced and restless of amorous desires and fell the moon and his followers [the stars] in amazement. (20) Expanding Himself to as many [appearances] as there were cowherd women present enjoyed He, though being the self-satisfied Supreme Lord, His Selves playing with them. (21) Of them, fatigued of the pleasure of the romance, wiped He in loving compassion the faces, my best, with His most soothing hand. (22) Greatly pleased by the touch of His fingernails sang the gopîs of the exploits of their Hero, honoring Him with the nectarean beauty of their smiles, glances, cheeks and locks of hair, shining golden in the effulgence of their earrings.

    (23) With His garland crushed and smeared by the kunkuma of their breasts, entered He, as the leader of the Gandharvas accompanied by the swiftly following bees, being tired, in order to dispel the fatigue, the water not unlike a bull-elephant does with his wives having broken the irrigation dikes [or the normal rules of conduct]. (24) In the water was He from all sides splashed by the girls eyeing Him with love and laughter, my best, and being worshiped from the heavenly carriers with a rain of flowers reveled He, who is personally always pleased within, there in playing like the king of the elephants [see also 8.3]. (25) Just like an elephant dripping rut with his wives He then passed, surrounded by the lot of His bees and women, through a grove reaching the Yamunâ that everywhere was filled with the fragrance carried by the wind from the flowers in the water and on the land. (26) In this manner spent He, the Truth of all Desire, with His many adoring girlfriends the night that was so bright of the moonlight. Thereby manifested He within Himself all the romantic gestures in enjoying all those autumn nights that are so very inspiring to poetic descriptions of transcendental moods [or rasas].'

    (27-28) S'rî Parîkchit said: 'To establish the dharma and to subdue the ones defiant, descended indeed He, the Supreme Lord, the Controller of the Universe with His plenary portion [Balarâma]. How could He, the original speaker, executor and protector of the codes of moral conduct, behave so to the contrary o brahmin, in touching the wives of others? (29) What did He, so self-satisfied, have in mind with this assuredly contemptible performance, o best of the vowed, please dispel our doubt about this.'

    (30) S'rî S'uka said: 'The transgression of dharma and thoughtlessness, as can be observed with spiritual authorities, does not mean they are at fault. They are much like an all-consuming fire [which is not affected by what it consumes]. (31) Someone not in control [with himself] most certainly mustn't even think of ever doing a thing like this; such a one, acting out of foolishness, would find his destruction as good as anybody else but Rudra would with [drinking] the poison from the ocean [see 8.7]. (32) True are the words of the ones in control [with the Lord, with themselves] and what they do should by people of intelligence [only] in some cases be taken as an example to follow, namely in those cases in which that what they do is in accord with that what they said [see also B.G. e.g. 3: 6-7, 3: 42, 5: 7]. (33) As good as, my best, there for those whose acts are egoless is no advantage to be found with what they in their piety do, will they neither suffer any disadvantage when they act contrary to the expectations. (34) How then can we in connection with the Controller of those who are controlled - all the created beings, animals, human beings and denizens of heaven - speak of right or wrong? (35) The sages, whose bondage of karma by serving the dust of the lotus feet has all been washed away, are satisfied by the power of yoga and act freely, they, on His account, never get entangled; in what sense could one speak of a state of bondage with those who according His will have accepted bodies of a transcendental nature? [see vapu]. (36) He who within the gopîs and their husbands, indeed within all embodied beings, lives as the Supreme Witness, has assumed His form to sport in this world. (37) Assuming a humanlike body to show His mercy to His devotees, does He engage in pastimes about which one hearing becomes dedicated to Him [see also 1.7: 10]. (38) Even though the cowherd men of Vraja were bewildered by the power of His mâyâ were they not jealous with Krishna; they all assumed that their wives stood by their side. (39) Even though they didn't want to went the gopîs, the sweethearts of the Supreme Lord, on Krishna's advise home after that [endless] night of Brahmâ had passed. (40) Anyone who faithfully listens to or gives an account of this pastime of Lord Vishnu with the cowherd girls of Vraja, will obtain the transcendental devotional service of the Supreme Lord, he will quickly become sober and manage to drive away the disease of lust in the heart.'