Understanding the Different Rasas

Srimad Bhagavatam 10.26.11-13 - Understanding the Different Rasas (download mp3)
by Mahananda Prabhu at ISKCON Chowpatty

SB 10.26.11
pralambam ghatayitvogram
 balena bala-salina
amocayad vraja-pasun
 gopams caranya-vahnitah

After arranging for the mighty Lord Balarama to kill the terrible demon Pralamba, Krsna saved Vraja’s cowherd boys and their animals from a forest fire.

SB 10.26.12
 damitva vimadam hradat
prasahyodvasya yamunam
 cakre ’sau nirvisodakam

Krsna chastised the most poisonous serpent, Kaliya, and after humbling him He drove him forcibly from the lake of the Yamuna. In this way the Lord made the water of that river free of the snake’s powerful poison.

SB 10.26.13
dustyajas canurago ’smin
 sarvesam no vrajaukasam
nanda te tanaye ’smasu
 tasyapy autpattikah katham

Dear Nanda, how is it that we and all the other residents of Vraja cannot give up our constant affection for your son? And how is it that He is so spontaneously attracted to us?

The very word krsna means “the all-attractive one.” The residents of Vrndavana could not give up their constant love (anuraga) for Lord Krsna. Their attitude toward Him was not particularly theistic, because they were unsure whether He was God or not. But He attracted all their love precisely because as God He is the all-attractive person, the supreme object of our love.

The cowherd men also asked, “How is it that young Krsna feels such constant love for us?” In fact the Supreme Lord loves all living beings, who are eternally His children. At the end of the Bhagavad-gita, Lord Krsna dramatically declares His affection for Arjuna and urges Arjuna to reciprocate that love by surrendering to Him. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, in His prayers to Lord Krsna, states, etadrsi tava krpa bhagavan mamapi durdaivam idrsam ihajani nanuragah: “My Lord, You are so merciful toward Me, but I am so unfortunate that love for You has not awakened within Me.” (Siksastaka 2) In this statement Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu also uses the word anuraga. Our misfortune is that we cannot reciprocate the anuraga, or loving affection, that the Lord feels for us. Although we are infinitesimal and insignificant and the Lord is infinitely attractive, somehow we do not give Him our love. We must accept responsibility for this foolish decision, since to surrender to God or not is the essential expression of our free will.

The Krsna consciousness movement provides an efficient, systematic program to help conditioned souls revive their original, blissful consciousness, which is love of God, Krsna consciousness. The intricacies of Krsna consciousness are so wonderful that even Krsna’s eternal associates, the residents of Vrndavana, are astonished by them, as shown by these verses.