Vishrama Ghat

Navala Kunda and Aspara Kunda

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Navala Kunda and Aspara Kunda

The two kundas that we see in front of us are called Navala and Aspara kundas. When the rasa dance was being enacted and all the gopis were dancing with Krishna. At that time Krishna be came overwhelmed with ecstasy and he went to this lake here called Navala kunda. Navala means evergreen, and Krishna being also an evergreen personality came to this kunda to enjoy its cool waters. The beautiful ladies of the heavenly planets arc known as Apsaras and when the gopis became overwhelmed in ecstasy at the rasa dance, all their ecstasy came and formed this lake called Apsara kunda wanting to be close to Krishna a Navala kunda. Now we will here a very nice lecture on rasaraja and’ mahabhava and some of the more deeper aspects of love in separation.

Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu has been described as the rasaraja and mahabhava. These characteristics are eternal; but what arc the actual meanings of rasaraja and mahabhava? Krishna is the rasaraja, he is the enjoyer of all spiritual mellows and Srimati Radhika is the mahabhava because she exhibits the highest spiritual ecstasy. So this means Srimati Radharani as mahabhava and’ Krishna as rasaraja are eternally embracing each other, and they, have appeared as a united form in the embodiment of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu.

As close as Lalita devi was to Srimati Radhika and Krishna, still she had never witnessed in their pastimes where due to intensive and intimate conjugal love Krishna slowly took on the complexion and mood of Srimati Radharani. Lalita devi never even got a glimpse of this most precious, loving exchange. Yet in her expansion as Ramananda Ray in Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s pastimes, Lalita devi was able to witness this wonderful pastime happening as Mahaprabhu exhibited it. Lalita devi as Ramananda Ray saw Srimati Radharani and Krishna embracing each other eternally in the form of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu. She saw in the form of Lord Caitanya, Krishna the rasaraja being gradually influenced by Srimati Radhika’s mood of mahabhava. ‘She saw Krishna’s darkish complexion slowly being covered by Srimati Radharani’s golden complexion. She witnessed all these pastimes in an acute mood of ecstatic reverence, and seeing them for the first time Lalita devi in her expansion as Ramananda Ray realised that Lord Caitanya was experiencing intense separation or vipralambha and ecstasy of reunion at every moment, and this realisation caused Ramananda Ray to fall to the ground unconscious in deep ecstasy.

So from this we can conclude that vipralambha is the support ing cause of ecstasy and not the principle cause, and that it is the meeting again in reunion where the sublimes mellows are ex changed not in the anxiety of separation.

Those who have not scrutinizingly studied the scripture Srimad Bhagavatam, and who have not conscientiously comprehended Sri Caitanya Caritamrta, and who have also not properly understood books like Bhakti Rasamrta Sindhu, Brhad Bhagavatamrta, Ujjvala Nilamani, Krishna Karnamrta and other literature of this nature. These people consider vipralambha, the mood of separation to be the highest level of ecstasy. Our previous acaryas also considered vipralambha to be an exalted state; but after much reflection they perceived vipralambha as a prerequisite to highlight and more fully embellish and amplify the ecstasy of reunion. If there would only be vipralambha for all of eternity what would be the use? What would be its service? Vipralambha is necessary only because it intensifies the ecstatic feelings of reuniting again. If during the entire period of time Srimati Radharani was separated from Krishna there was no crying and lamenting and shedding of tears in intense mood of separation; then how could all the symptoms of ecstasy and the ecstatic loving exchanges between them as described in Srimad Bhagavatam manifest themselves in such a state of elevated emotional ecstasy. By seriously studying the Srimad Bhagavatam one can clearly come to the conclusion that the period of feeling vipralambha lasts for only three months, whereas for nine month the ecstasy of meeting again is experienced.

You must consider that the mood of separation in Vraja is certainly not what we think it is from our mundane, materialist point of view. It is quite different. Krishna never leaves Vrindavan. How can Srimati Radharani feel the mood of intense separation from Krishna when she’s closely encircled in Krishna’s embrace? And how can Srimati Radhika feel separation because of anger in intense love when both she and Krishna are sitting next to each other? Yet still Srimati Radhika is feeling vipralambha. And how does the feeling of vipralambha arise when she and Krishna are playing together? An example of this last pastime is that one day while Srimati Radhika and Krishna were performing their pastimes a big, black bee suddenly flew into their love grove. Now Krishna is sometimes called Madhusudana because he killed the Madhu demon, so a bumblebee is sometimes called Madhusudana, madhu means honey. When Krishna saw the bee he jokingly said, hey Radhe be careful or that bumblebee may sting you. Srimati Radhika becoming afraid ran into Krishna’s arms and he playfully making a joke on one of his names said to her, hey Radhe there is no need to fear anymore Madhusudana has already gone. As soon as Srimati Radharani heard the words that Madhusudana had already gone she was bitten by the snake of vipralambha and fell immediately to the ground shedding tears and beating her breast crying out, O my beloved Madhusudana has gone. My beloved Madhusudana has gone. What is to become of me?

So you can see that the mood of vipralambha is much more complex than possibly the way you envisioned it to be before. And those who still persist in advocating that vipralambha is the highest, they do not yet have the spiritual maturity and understanding to realize that it is not possible for anything to be more elevated than Srimati Radharani and Krishna’s ecstatic loving exchanges in reuniting again. If we follow a natural progression of thinking we know that only something precious is lamented over when lost. The something precious is the ecstatic pastimes of Sri Sri Radha Krishna. They are the subject. The verb which follows the subject is vipralambha, lamented over. Without a subject a verb is useless and similarly without reunion vipralambha, so from these observations we can all see that the feeling of vipralambha although necessary to intensify reunion, is totally dependent and completely subordinate to Sri Sri Radha Krishna’s ecstatic loving exchanges. Vancha kalpa tarubhya Ca, krpa sindhu bhya eva Ca, patitanam pavanebhyo, vaisnavebhyo namo namaha.

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