A Marriage Pastime

On the hill there is a slippery rock showing where a specific pastime was enacted in a marriage arena. There, the gopīs arranged a special kind of marriage between Lalitā and Kṛṣṇa. This should not be misunderstood as a real marriage, but rather a play marriage.

In that pastime, Kṛṣṇa was sitting beside Lalitā and the sakhīs began to play mischievously. Viśākhā and some of the other sakhīs tied Śrī Lalitā’s veil to Kṛṣṇa’s Pītāmbara (yellow shawl). Then, suddenly, on the indication of Śrīmatī Rādhikā, Raṅgadevī and other sakhīs started to sing wedding songs, while Tungavidyā and others uttered wedding mantras. The remaining sakhīs showered flowers on Śrī Kṛṣṇa and Lalitā. When Lalitā noticed that something tricky was being done to her, she tried to run away, but because she was tied to Kṛṣṇa’s Pītāmbara she could not do so. All the sakhīs then surrounded the couple and married them.

Even today, one can see the signs of the slide on the hill, as well as the markings of red lac from the gopīs’ feet. Although this pastime took place 5,000 years ago, you can still visualize these signs with your own eyes.

September 10, 2005 Mathurā

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Then the sakhās came and asked Kṛṣṇa, “Sakhā, tell us, where did this Gaṅgā come from? We can’t believe this is the real Gaṅgā. You are very clever. Instead of sleeping last night, You made a dam and stocked water from all the drains and nearby ponds, and in the morning, opened the dam and are now telling us this is the Gaṅgā. You are cheating everyone. Gaṅgā is the water from the feet of Bhagavān. Show us the flow from Bhagavān’s feet, and then we will believe You are speaking the truth. You can cheat the old men of Vraja, but not us.” “Fine,” Kṛṣṇa said. “You want to see, come with me.” Kṛṣṇa went with the Vrajavāsīs to the top of the hill and showed them Harideva, present with four hands. From His feet, Gaṅgā was flowing down into Brahma-kuṇḍa and from there to Mānasi-gaṅgā. At that time, Girirāja Govardhana was twenty-one kilometers long and seven kilometers high. Taking the opportunity, Girirāja Govardhana also took bath, sinking down at that place into the water of Mānasi-gaṅgā. Seeing Gaṅgā-devī, a doubt came in Śrīmatī Rādhikā’s mind. “From where did Kṛṣṇa bring her?” She thought. The sakhīs angrily came to Kṛṣṇa and said, “You are a big cheater!” “How did I cheat? What did I do wrong? Did I not satisfy everyone by arranging for Gaṅgā to come?” “Where has she come from? She has many names and forms, so what is her name here?” “Her name is Mānasi-gaṅgā,” replied Kṛṣṇa. “Oh, now we understand,” the gopīs said. “Your mind is very restless. You have room for Gaṅgā in Your mind, but not for us.” A girl is jealous seeing her lover being attracted to another girl. Similarly, Śrīmatī Rādhikā and the gopīs now felt great jealousy, for which there seemed to be no solution. The gopīs said, “Your mind has place for another and not for us. You have cheated us all.” “No, I like you,” Kṛṣṇa replied. “You are all My beloveds.” “These are just words. Your mind had room for Gaṅgā and therefore she manifested from Your mind. Thus You have called her Mānasi-gaṅgā.” Kṛṣṇa is always defeated by the Vraja-devīs. He thought, “Finding a solution for the sakhās was not a problem, but how to solve this? If on one hand I say, ‘In my mind I have no place for Gaṅgā,’ then I will be a liar, and if I say, ‘She resides in my mind,’ then the gopīs will be angry and say ‘From where has this step wife come.’ ” Kṛṣṇa then said, “Gaṅgā-devī came from the dreadlocks of Siva Ṭhākura.’ ” “Śiva Ṭhākura is in Kailāsa, so how did Gaṅgā get here?” the gopīs asked. “Śiva Ṭhākura is present nearby.” Kṛṣṇa then took the gopīs for darśana of Śiva Ṭhākura, who He had invoked and requested to stay on the bank of Manasi-gaṅgā as Cakleśvara Mahādeva. Seeing Śiva Ṭhākura, the gopīs became slightly pacified. Kṛṣṇa then called Gaṅgā-devī before the gopīs, who came and said, “I am only the water that washes His feet. I am a servant and not His beloved. But you are His dearest, most beloved gopīs.” On Kṛṣṇa’s indication, Gaṅgā-devī went to Śrīmatī Rādhikā and, bowing down, she said, “I am also Your maidservant.” Hearing Gaṅgā’s supplication, Śrīmatī Rādhikā accepted Gaṅgā as Her sakhī, and all the gopīs became happy and their jealousy was finished. Why was Kṛṣṇa merciful to Gaṅgā? Why did He summon her to Vraja? Kṛṣṇa used to play in the Yamunā with His sakhās and sakhīs. Beholding this great privilege of her younger sister Yamunā, Gaṅgā-devī became overpowered by a strong desire to also serve Śrī Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa by her waters. She expressed her desire to Yamunā and begged for her help, who then requested Kṛṣṇa to bestow His mercy on her elder sister, Gaṅgā-devī. Thus, on Makara Saṅkrānti, Śrī Kṛṣṇa summoned Gaṅgā-devī to Vraja and blessed her by bathing in her waters with all the Vrajavāsīs.

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