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Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Chitra Sakhi's Dream

Radha is being bathed in the morning. All the sakhis and manjaris are around her, doing their different sevas. Someone is oiling her hair. Others are massaging different creams into her skin, some are putting perfumes in the water or preparing the clothes and ornaments that she will wear afterward.

Lalita comes to where Radha is sitting on a velvet covered bench and tells her that Chitra has had a very strange dream. "Wait till you hear it, it will really make you laugh!" And she starts to recount it to Radharani.

In the dream Chitra has suddenly found herself in a beautiful garden somewhere by the Yamuna, but she does not know where or how she got there. She is completely alone and is looking for Shyamasundar. But who can she ask? There is no one there.

She starts to go a little mad and starts asking the elements to help her find him. One by one, she asks the air, the ether, water, earth and fire to help, since they are all-pervading and will know where Krishna is. She asks the air, but there is no answer. No one answers.

After going through all the elements, she begins to  feel hopeless and abandoned because she still hasn't seen her Shyamsundar. But then she suddenly sees five effulgent devatas standing by the river ghat.

She asks them who they are and they tell her they are the respective gods of the elements. They say that they have heard her call and come to her for her darshan.

So Chitra says, "Never mind all that, just tell me where is Shyamasundar?"

And they say, "We don't know. We do not have the power to see him."

Chitra: "Well that is a fine help!"

"Ordinarily, we cannot even see you gopis, but since you have called us, we are here. If you give us the dust of your feet, we will smear it on our eyes and then maybe we can find him for you."

"How is that? I can't find him myself and somehow my dust is going to help you find him? Doesn't make sense."

She is confused and backs away, so they come and take the dust anyway and smear it over their eyes. Then they roll in the dust, so that Chitra thinks they are completely crazy. and a few minutes later they come back and say, "He is just now coming." Then they disappear.

And suddenly Shyamasundar appears with a big smile on his face. Chitra says, "Where on earth have you been? What's the deal, leaving me all alone here by my lonesome?"

Krishna answers, "I was at the temple of Tripura Sundari, doing puja."

"What did you go there for?"

It takes some cajoling, but finally Krishna starts to tell her.

“Yesterday, I was watching as you all dressed Radha and I began to think. Radha's body is so soft and delicate that even the weight of the flower garland must bruise it. The sharp corners of her sari must scratch her and irritate her where she is so tender. The jewels are also heavy and unpleasant, what to speak of all the unguents and mascara that must be such an annoyance. One by one, all these concerns began to trouble me.

“I know she does all this for me, just to give me pleasure, but it is not really necessary. In fact, these clothes and makeup and jewelry are only fulfilling their own existence by being placed on her body. She does not really need them to make herself more beautiful for me.

“If I were to tell her to stop putting all this stuff on, I know she will do it just because I ask. But then, if she starts going around naked, people will really think she has gone completely crazy! They will lock her away inside the house and then she will really be in trouble. She will go sick from separation and die very soon.
Tripura Sundari

“I fell into a quandary, wondering what can I do? I could not sleep all night, so this morning I went to Devi's temple and began to pray.

“Tripura Sundari kindly appeared to me and said, ‘What is the trouble Shyam?’

“So I asked her, ‘Bhagavati, what is the softest thing in the world?’

“And Bhagavati said, smiling, ‘Why Shyam, there is nothing softer or more delicate in the entire universe than you and Radha!’”

So Krishna started thinking, “Aha! If I could just enter into all the things that Radha puts on, if I become her mascara, if I become her blouse, her sari, the alta on her feet, then all those things will become soft and more bearable for her, and they will cease to cause her any suffering.”

So Krishna said to Tripura Sundari, "You told me that I was the softest thing, so now you have to give me the power to enter all the hard things so there is no disturbance for Radha."



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