Getting out of Self Consciousness to Understand Krishna Consciousness
Srimad Bhagavatam 10.82.39 - Getting out of Self Consciousness to Understand Krishna Consciousness (download mp3)
by Radha Vallabha Prabhu at ISKCON Chowpatty
gopyas ca krsnam upalabhya cirad abhistam
yat-preksane drsisu paksma-krtam sapanti
drgbhir hrdi-krtam alam parirabhya sarvas
tad-bhavam apur api nitya-yujam durapam
Sukadeva Gosvami said: While gazing at their beloved Krsna, the young gopis used to condemn the creator of their eyelids, [which would momentarily block their vision of Him]. Now, seeing Krsna again after such a long separation, with their eyes they took Him into their hearts, and there they embraced Him to their full satisfaction. In this way they became totally absorbed in ecstatic meditation on Him, although those who constantly practice mystic yoga find such absorption difficult to achieve.
According to Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti, just then Lord Balarama saw the gopis standing a short distance away. Seeing them trembling with eagerness to meet Krsna, and apparently ready to give up their lives if they could not, He tactfully decided to get up and involve Himself elsewhere. Then the gopis attained the state described in the current verse. In referring to the gopis’ intolerant disrespect of Lord Brahma, “the creator of eyelids,” Sukadeva Gosvami is giving vent to his own subtle jealousy of the gopis’ favored position.
Srila Jiva Gosvami offers an alternate understanding of the phrase nitya-yujam, which may mean “even of the Lord’s principal queens, who tend to be proud of their constant association with Him.”
In Krsna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Srila Prabhupada writes: “Because they had been separated from Krsna for so many years, the gopis, having come along with Nanda Maharaja and mother Yasoda, felt intense ecstasy in seeing Krsna. No one can even imagine how anxious the gopis were to see Krsna again. As soon as Krsna became visible to them, they took Him inside their hearts through their eyes and embraced Him to their full satisfaction. Even though they were embracing Krsna only mentally, they became so ecstatic and overwhelmed with joy that for the time being they completely forgot themselves. The ecstatic trance which they achieved simply by mentally embracing Krsna is impossible to achieve even for great yogis constantly engaged in meditation on the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Krsna could understand that the gopis were rapt in ecstasy by embracing Him in their minds, and therefore, since He is present in everyone’s heart, He also reciprocated the embracing from within.”