Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Shri Krishna Kripakataksha Stotram: 1st shloka

Bhaje Brajaik mandanan-samast paap khandnam.

Svabhakta chit ranjanan sadaiv Nandnandnam.

Supich guch mastakan sunaad venhu hastakam.

Anang rang saagaran namaami Krishna Naagram.

'I sing devotional songs for Nandnandan, the darling son of Nanda, and lovingly worship him; the sole adornment and majestic grandeur of Braj, destroyer of all sins; who constantly fills the minds of his devotees with inspiration and delight.'

Braj is a symbol displaying the presence and power of Krishna, the life and soul of Braj denizens.The gopis address him as prandhan or wealth of their hearts in their compositions.The repository of Braj's good fortune, Nandnandan is the destroyer of all sins. Not just innocent Braj residents but all living sentient beings find respite in him; adulated by deities and sages alike. The demons of chaos and darkness attained salvation even though they attacked Krishna with vengeance.

Krishna bursts forth into the hearts of his devotees; the handsome god affects all with a mysterious and sometimes terrifying rush of love. His hungering devotees, represented by the enraptured village girls with whom he sported in his youth are passionately drawn by the dark god fluting in the blossoming pastures. On sensing his approach, they would cast of all the burdens of convention and move in a delicious anguish to his side.

'I propitiate the supreme lover of the gopis, constantly steeped in the love of Krishna, who is the adornment of Braj and annihilator of all sins.'

Raving about the ineffably beautiful Krishna, Adi Shankaracharyaji details his romantic dalliance, the mellifluous sound of his flute and enraptured sakhis drawn by the melody. Enchanted by his spirited antics the composer exults, 'I respectfully salute the supreme rasika, Shri Krishna whose forehead is ornamented with a bunch of peacock tail feathers. The flute which is the breath of love adorns his lotus hands and he is an ocean of the sentiment of sweet romance.'

The peacock is very dear to the handsome god, since it does not have a trace of mundane lust. One who abandons worldly desires, can delight in Krishna's secret or sudden love. If in search of self-gratification, we can not urge one another into complete absorption in the joy of Krishna. The cluster of peacock tail feathers flutter and express delight; they are the emblem of pure love.

The feathers have the good fortune of adorning Krishna's forehead along with sighting Shri Radha-Krishna's playful dalliance. Instrumental in spurring the divine play, they confer joy to the lover and his beloved in various ways.

Sunad venhu hastakam: The blessed flute, the breath of love is resplendent in Krishna's tenderly beautiful lotus hands. A call to eternity, it is the supreme lover's beloved; living without it is tough or rather impossible. Abandoning its breed, hollowing itself forever, the instrument has no tone of its own. The nectar of Krishna's lips is its life-giving herb. Its melodious sound, expresses the god's concerns while taking message to his beloveds.

'What act of great merit hath this flute performed? It is drinking the nectar from the lips of Krishna without leaving the smallest particle for the gopis, the rightful enjoyers of it!' lament the cowherdesses.

'What is this more loved even than us, that night and day Krishna continues holding it,' wails another. One of the gopis affirm that it is no use condemning the flute.The mellifluous sound, assists them by transporting the supreme lover's ardent messages and draws the milkmaids of Vrindavana out of their homes for a romantic dalliance with Krishna.

Stepping from Krishna, the repository of love, into the rhythm of seven vowels, crossing the gopis' ears, it sinks into their inner being, making them ardently long for Krishna and soon enough they head for the closeness of the enigmatic supreme being. Therefore the flute is not just a musical instrument but the breath of love. Hearing it Kama, the god of love flees and love centered around the dark hued Shyama, a spiritual romantic dalliance prevails; countering accusations of mundane sexuality with clearly defined distinctions between lust and divine.

Anang rang saagaran namaami Krishna Naagram

Elusive Krishna is an ocean of sweet romance; wherein the terrifying rush of love is not confined to tangible limbs. Worldly lust deforms the charming bhavas of the heart. Steeped in transcendental love of the highest order, soon enough one reaches the zenith of spiritual awareness. Words can not express the heights of elation and ecstasy, pathos of longing and the great good fortune of this spiritual experience.

Krishna, that insistent divinity-that beautiful dark-skinned cowherd of Vrindavana is hungry too for the fulfillment of love. For can the god subsist without the food of sacrifice? Surges of his sudden and mysterious love are carried by the breath of love, the flute to his beloveds, drawing them. And soon enough these enraptured cowherdesses, newly weds casting off all the burdens of convention and forgetting highly restrictive social norms, move in a delicious anguish to his side.

Their ardent longing finds respite in Krishna's vast embrace. Restless, like turbulent rivers these maidens are purified and absorbed in this surge of love. Even steeped in this realm of love one's identity remains for the sake of relishing love, for fulfilling Krishna's desire for a loving relationship in a variety of ways.

This is the theory of dwait or dualism of the lovers which has both dwait and adwait or non-dualism.They are in essence a single entity, who manifest as two distinct individuals for the sake of interpersonal romantic exchange. Radha along with her sakhis or replications, and Krishna are one, although they have taken two forms to enjoy a relationship.

The flute finds no place in the realm of adwait...the playful dalliance of the lover Krishna and his beloved Radha continues...contentment and gratification have no position here. The supreme rasika and his beloved Radha are constantly, bestowing and relishing the terrifying rush of love.The musical instrument which is a breath of love is also not a part of the ardent longing where Shri Radha-Krishna unite to become one.

Mundane lust has no entry into this realm of romantic dalliance. Isolated joy prevails even amongst herds here. Everyone has a personal identity and the supreme lover nurtures all with his sudden and mysterious love, filling their lives with inspiration and delight. The most human of gods, he relishes their love himself.

Shri Radha is foremost of the gopis, able to please Krishna with little more than a glance. She above all the cowherdesses of Vrindavana and above all the other souls of the world ultimately emerges as the supreme object of Krishna's passionate love.

If our ardour is sufficient and understanding complete we can identify our passion and the consummation of our love with hers. Radha feels that her love for Krishna can always expand to greater heights, and therefore she manifests herself as the many gopis of Braj, who help us realize who we really are in terms of our eternal identity in the spiritual realm. Through this meditation one gradually develops prema or love for Krishna.

Adi Shankaracharyaji, the composer makes a respectful salutation to the supreme lover seen as the object of longing and of a love which is expressed in the cry of the enraptured soul for god, of the enraptured cowherdesses for union with their teasing, elusive and insistent paramour; a vast ocean of sweet love, wherein loving rivers or beloveds find respite, to Krishna the embodiment of love and the wealth of our souls.

It is truly a blessing to attain a slight touch of Krishna, by which all worldly contacts decline; bowing before him can do wonders. Destroying earthly desires it makes us worthy of interaction with the supreme lover. With this implicit faith and belief, Shankaracharyaji propitiates the supreme lover over and over again. This is precisely the distinctive quality of a loving heart, the composer of the stava steeped in Krishna, an ocean of sweet love.

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