Narayana Bhattathiri, in his Narayaneeyam, sang eloquently of the love that the Gopikas had for Lord Krishna. The more they saw Krishna, the more captivated they were by His charm. As Krishna stood cross-legged, playing His flute, it was not only the Gopikas who were mesmerised; even animals and birds stood motionless. Were these birds and animals not just as fortunate as the Gopikas, asks Bhattathiri, for they too were able to hear the strains of music that came from Krishna’s flute. Was the earth not blessed, too, to bear the feet of Krishna? As the Gopikas grew more and more attached to the Lord, they became less and less concerned with worldly matters. Indifference to worldly matters paves the way for liberation from the cycle of births and deaths, said Sankararama Dikshitar, in a discourse. This unconcern for worldly matters which the Gopikas developed, because of their love for Krishna, granted them liberation, to attain which many strive so hard.

When Krishna played the flute, the Gopikas abandoned whatever they were doing and went to Krishna. Some of them had been adorning themselves with jewels, and in their haste, they came with the jewels worn haphazardly. One woman came wearing a necklace on her hip, and a waist band around her neck!

Reading of the Lord’s dancing with the Gopikas, one might wonder if such acts of His were right, for after all how could He draw to Him women who were married? The answer is that what the Gopikas enjoyed was Brahma rasa. What they experienced was upliftment of the soul. It was a joy that had nothing to do with the body. It was to do with the atma. What the Gopikas enjoyed was not a temporary joy, as is usual with all worldly pleasures. What the Gopikas enjoyed was not an appeasement of the senses. So Krishna dancing with them was undoubtedly dharmic. The Lord granted to the Gopikas His grace because their bhakti was unsurpassed. He Himself says no one is as dear to Him as the Gopikas. Those who tell people about the Rasa Kreeda and those who listen to it being told will have their minds cleared of all impure thoughts.

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