Saturday, March 2, 2024

Govinda, who lifts Goverdhan as an umbrella

  • Tiruppavai – 21

Yetra kalangal ethir pongi meedalippa

Maatraadhe paal soriyum vallal perum pasukkal

Aatra-p-padaithaan magane! arivuraai!

Uttramudayaai! Periyaai! Ulaginil

Thotramaai ninra sudare! thuzhilezhaai!

Maatraar unakku valithulaindhu un vaasarkann

Aatraadu vandhu unnadi paniyum maa poley

Pottriyaam vandhom pugazhndu-el or Empaavaai

O Son of Nanda Gopala, Owning Many Large Cows that

Generously Overflow Milk Incessantly, Awake!

Known through Veda and Even Veda’s can’t explain

Your strength, Standing Resplendent for Conscience Eyes

Embodiment of Entire Light, for the Whole Universe.      

Devoid of their strength, Your Enemies Lost pride in battle

Surrender at Your Feet & Gate, Helpless and Praising

Similarly, We Came over to Sing Mangalam For You.

The large groups of Cows, the animals that give milk on their own, filling and overflowing the pots, are considered the real wealth of the ancient society in Krishna’s Dwapara Yuga. The cows in Nanda Vraja have grown with regular affectionate divine touch of Krishna. They learnt to be kind and helping others like this lively boy. Krishna always thinks how to help them and repay for their kind flow of milk. The animals imbibed this kindness from Him. They desire to give as much milk as they could without minding whether pots are filled or overflowing. Krishna showers the milk of his kindness generously in similar manner. The milk giving animals have been doubly strengthened with the association of Sri Krishna.

From song 21, Goda praises the glory of Narayana. There are four kinds of devotees. 1 Aarta.. who seek relief from the pains and difficulties, 2 Jijnaasu… who are curious to know the character of the Self, 3 Artharthi…who desires wealth, and 4 Jnaani … who wants to serve God, not bothering worldly pleasures. All the four are good, but Jnaani is one, who is dear to me, says Krishna in His Bhagavadgita. God is so kind that he considers four kinds are kind hearted. That is the generosity of the God. The milking animals do not even require someone to squeeze milk from them. They generously give on their own. But one thing is an essential requirement. That is keeping the pot below the flow of milk. You have to turn towards God, go nearer to teacher, and ask for what you want. God has supreme quality of giving without someone asking for. But like pot, you should be in a receiving position; keeping pot is having desire for feeling about God. Lakshmi is described as “Anapaayani” who is always with Him. Still she says, ‘I cannot survive without You’. Nitya Suri class of divine souls say we always want to see you… “Sadaa Pashyanthi Soorayah”. Acharya’s explain the milk called glory of Bhagawan. That God, who owns such generous cows, with flourishing milk, is being requested to wake up and look at the Gopikas. It is not Vishnu of ocean of Milk, but Krishna under whose control animals flow rivers of milk. He left Ksheerabdi and settled in Vrepalle for these innocent and simple beings. Listen to our passionate calls, O God. Neela, the lover of Krishna, joined Goda and Gopikas in waking up Krishna. Krishna remained unresponsive thinking that they might be waking up some other great personality and not He. The Gopikas found it and started praising Krishna with characteristic attributes which are exclusive to Krishna. The wealth you have inherited from Nanda is to help us, and not to sleep like this. We all think that You left Ksheerabdi, original residence of Vishnu- the ocean of milk, and took birth in a clan which lives on milking animals.

Also Read : Replace Ego with Namah to Experience Bliss of Paramaatma

Nandagopa has five great qualities – 1. He holds Vela to secure and serve Krishna, 2 Leader of the clan, 3 generous giver of cloth, food and water, 4 valiant enough to defeat rogue elephants of enemies and 5 owner of huge number of large cows which flow the milk incessantly. Sri Bhashyam Appalacharya interpreted that these are the qualities of Acharya also. 1. They love Bhagawan so much that they think it is their duty to protect Him, to pray for His welfare (Mangalasasanam), 2, they want to share their experience they had in mediation of God, like a leader, 3 for achieving that purpose they gave a tool –Tirumantra- which sustains, nourishes and gives enjoyable experience to all, 4 strength to defeat elephant like enemies who disturb their meditation of God and getting God under their control, and 5 training and preparing of disciples, who can effectively communicate and spread the experience of meditation of God to many. God remains obedient to Guru. Great attributes of a good leader is having firm strength, considering that it is their duty to protect those who dependent on Him. Rama says during the exile, “it is my vow and duty to serve the Saadhus and Sages even if it costs my life, you and Lakshmana”.

Also Read : Neela is the Deepa Rekha of Sri Krishna

Sri Krishna is Narayana which is proposed by Vedas. “Sarve Vedah Krishna’, all tools of knowing Krishna are Vedas. It is difficult to know Him completely even through Vedas. He is not reachable by word, voice, or mind. But you can only know Him through the word, mind and sight. He is embodiment of light. Each can see him as he desires. One can see Him in temple. He is in Pooja rooms in Residences. He is behind doors and within minds. He is in that shape and form as much as you can afford to think about. It is said that He is waiting to bless those who might desire Him at some point of time.

He is kind enough to give shelter to Vibheeshana, who is none other than brother of Ravana who separated Seeta from Him. Though He could have killed Ravana, changes his mind and gives him one more day to live and think. He does not think that He is helping others, for Him it is His routine duty. He felt relieved when he gave Kishkinda to Sugreeva and Lanka to Vibheeshana. He did not think, even for a minute, of merging their Kingdom into His.

Govinda, who lifts Goverdhan as an umbrella

Story of Kaakasura

When Hanuma wished to carry back to Rama some sign to indicate that he had met Seeta. She recounted an intimate incident at Chitrakuta, which even Lakshmana was not aware of. Once, tired Rama fell asleep in Seeta’s lap. A crow flew close by and pecked at Seeta’s bosom. It was Indra’s bad son, Jayanth, who took the form of crow with lusty mind. Seeta realised that it was no ordinary crow, as that was causing deep injury and could not ward it off by pelting a pebble at it. Rama woke up and saw Seeta suffering at the crows’ assault. He decided to punish the crow with blood stained nails. He picked up a blade of grass to make it an arrow of Brahmastra. As this arrow chased the crow found none in the three worlds — including own father Indra, the celestial beings or the sages —could rescue from Rama Baana. Finally crow surrendered to Rama and sought excuse. Seeta recommends not to kill him, a true Purushakara, treating even a bad being as worthy of her blessings. But to honour the power of Brahmastra and as punishment for wrong deed of assaulting Seeta, Rama asked him to sacrifice any part of his body. He agreed to loss of one eye. Kaakaasura survived but lost an eye.

Also Read : Neela Devi mediates between Jeeva and Paramatma

Govardhana episode

Krishna descended as Tejo Roopa = embodiment of bright light, who inspired to blossom the lotus called the universe. Neela, with Goda and Gopikas say:  Enemies are defeated and surrendering to Him. We also shed our ego, praise your glory, surrendered at your feet. We give up our ego-of-beauty, decorative pieces, please wake up and protect us. He always looks at the possibility of persons shedding their ego. He teaches Indra a strong lesson without assaulting him. Krishna tolerates the massive rains, raining lightening at Brindavan for seven days and nights holding the huge Govardhana Giri on his little finger. There is an interesting story in the Bhagwata and other Puranas about Shri Krishna lifting the ‘Govardhan Parvat’ when he was only a seven year child.

Shri Krishna, questioned Indra Yajna regularly conducted by Nanda Raja, who said it was to please Lord Indra so that he allows rains regularly. But little Krishna convinced elders that it is Govardhana and Environment of the Nature that gives rains and water, which is not dependent on any worship. And if the people desire to thank, they should express gratitude towards that Hill. Having convinced, the King and people worship Govardhana.  Furious with this defiance, Indra felt offended and ordered the Dikpalakas the administrators of eight directions to send terrible rain clouds to flood the land of Vrindavan. Indra ordered them to lash upon Vrindavan with torrents of rain, thunderstorms and lightening to destroy Nanda village.

Also Read : Nanda -Acharya, Yashoda – Mantra and Krishna – the Mantrartha

Krishna lifted up the entire Govardhan Hill at once with His left hand, and held it up like an umbrella. All the inhabitants, along with their cows took shelter under Govardhan Hill not discomforted by heavy rains. Stunned and mystified, Indra realized the Supreme Soul in Sri Krishna, and surrendered to Him. He destroyed the false pride of Indra. Then people called Him Govinda. Of all names, Krishna loves to be called as Govinda, because he gained the title after holding huge hill for seven days and nights on his little finger.

Govinda, who lifts Goverdhan as an umbrella

Also Read : Cross the doors of diversion, to reach goal

Prof. M. Sridhar Acharyulu
Prof. M. Sridhar Acharyulu
Author is Dean, Professor of law at Mahindra University at Hyderabad and former Central Information Commissioner. He published a number books in English and Telugu.


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