Gopis’ Lilas with Krishna – Right way of understanding them!
A devotee (Name hidden) asked like this:
“How to justify gopis being very close to krishna in Goloka … is it not expected from girls?”
This is a totally misunderstood topic. In worldly vision and considerations, the activities of Gopis with Krishna may seem like sense gratification. But it is Prema.
What is the difference between sense gratification and Prema? You have to read the following explanation for that. In nutshell, if you involve in such acts to please your senses, it is lust. If you intend to please Krishna, it is called Prema. Read further for the excerpts from different sources to establish the real nature of the relations of Gopis with Krishna:
(Role of Gopi Bhava, Sakhi Bhava & Manjari Bhava in Radha-Krishna lilas! READ HERE!)
Devarishi Narada says about true love:
“The nature of Love cannot be described in words, like the experiences of a dumb person. This Love manifests itself in some rarely fortunate and qualified medium .This Love is beyond the range of the three Gunas, is untainted by desire, constantly growing, ceaseless in flow, and very subtle; it can be understood only by experience. A devotee who attains this sees only this Love, hears only this, and thinks of this and this alone.”
In the case of Gopis’ Lilas with Krishna, they saw only Krishna everywhere and nothing else; their eyes beheld nothing else in this world. Some people say that the Gopis never knew that Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
In the love of the Gopis, there is no passion and all their thoughts have centered round Krishna alone. The mind, the senses, the vital energy—all that the Gopis possessed—belonged to Krishna. Whether in this world or in the next, the Gopis knew no one else than Krishna. Whether awake or asleep, at work or at recreation, whether engaged in dressing, working or in conversation, they thought of nothing else but making Krishna happy.
(KRISHNA’s LILAS WITH MARRIED GOPIS -HOW TO UNDERSTAND IT? READ HERE!)
Krishna Himself said:
“O Arjuna, the Gopis take care of their bodies simply because they regard them as instruments of service to Me. Besides the Gopis there is none who is the object of My secret and profound Love.”
The Lord accepts all our offerings lovefully. Therefore, He accepted the offering of beauty of the Gopis and gives satisfaction to their desire.
Finding Krishna happy through their association, they remained merged in the ocean of bliss, whether awake or in sleep. There was no stain of sense gratification in this pure Love of the Gopis.
(3) Caitanya Caritamruta about Gopis’ Lilas with Krishna:
CaitanyaCaritamrita says about this difference between Kama and Prema (Love):
“The object of Kama is enjoyment through gratification of the senses, while Prema has the pleasure of Sri Krishna for its object. The Gopis pursue this Prema for the pleasures of Krishna (not for their own gratification).
(Is it possible for me to meet Krishna and approach Him like a Gopi? READ HERE!)
This difference between Kama and Prema is very wide and vital.
Kama is honey mixed with poison, while Prema is Divine, celestial nectar.
While Kama gives place immediately to pain, Prema gives the taste of nectarean bliss.
The gratification of senses through satisfaction of Kama, though appearing sweet in the beginning, is painful in consequence; whereas Prema (Love), though it knows no satiety, is the source of eternal and Supreme Bliss.
Kama is intermittent, while Prema is continuous and uninterrupted.
Kama has a tendency to subside, but Prema grows eternally.
The object of Kama is gratification of.the lower self through sense-enjoyment, while in Prema there is complete renunciation of the world and complete forgetfulness of self.”
(Why Krishna stole the clothes of Gopis while they were taking bath in the river Yamuna, although it is not ethical? READ HERE!)
The Gautamiya Tantra says about Gopis’ Lilas with Krishna:
For the Gopis had absolutely no desire for gratification of their own senses. Knowing Krishna to be God Himself, they sought to make Him happy by offering their entire being to Him.
CaitanyaCaritamrita says about Gopis’ Lilas with Krishna:
“The object of Kama is to gratify one’s senses. To render happiness to Krishna is the object of the adorable sentiment of the Gopis. The Gopis have no desire of happiness through gratification of senses; it is for the happiness of Krishna that they engage themselves in sports. The consideration of their own happiness or suffering does not weigh with the Gopis at all; what they do, they do for the sake of happiness of Krishna. Renouncing everything else, they cherish stainless Love for the happiness of Krishna.
Gopis remained in this divine state of relations with Krishna. Therefore Gopis’ Lilas with Krishna are in the divine state. Therefore, please do not see those activities in worldly angle. Their motto is to please Krishna. The gopis existing in Goloka are also in the same state of divinity in their relations with Krishna.
(WHO ARE GOPIS? HOW DID THEY GET KRISHNA? COMPLETE DETAILS! READ HERE!)