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Four Great Esoteric Sanskrit Love Classics and an unbelievably contemporary American Classic These five books are flagships of the Rasa Renaissance. They bring us good-tidings that the barren void in Art and Spirituality will once again resound with the passionate calls of cuckoos maddened by mango blossoms and hordes of bumblebees lusting after honey. All five of these books are great solace to the souls thirsting for Rasa or juicy climax of emotional fulfillment that we are all seeking from love, relationships, art and literature. They are great reading for all seasons. It is a fusion of great Rasa Art and great Rasa Literature. As an artist, Mumbiram has lived the life of a romantic classical painter. His perspective has the miraculous combination of a profound understanding of the timeless Indian Classics and a passion for innovation and originality in a painter´s life and craft. Mumbiram is the prime mover of the Personalist Movement in philosophy and art. His Art brings out the best of east-west confluence. Here erudition meets innocence. Here classics appear with a contemporary idiom. Mumbiram is creating archetypes of a transculture ethos. Mumbiram is leading a Rasa Renaissance as an artist. The paintings that appear in the High Five of Love were not made as illustrations. They are the outcome of a life led with the aesthetic choice as the only guiding beacon, a life that was inspired by the same romantic ideals as the great Rasa Classics. It may be said that if the legendary Jayadeva and his Gita Govinda did not exist, they would have to be invented as literary equivalents of Mumbiram´s Art. The persons appearing in the paintings exude the same unabashed innocent passion that the five great Sanskrit Rasa Classics arouse. We have all seen Krishna-Leela depicted in Pahari or Mughal miniatures. It is all stylized. The Gopis all look alike. They all have the same fish eyes, the same straight noses that emanate from the same curved foreheads. We can only relate to them as distant mythological figures. Mumbiram’s Gopis are individuals. Women that could be the girl next door or movie actresses or rag-pickers or bird-catchers or whatever. They bring the eternal causeless sporting of the divine with the living entities, leela, to today’s light. They breathe life-air into scriptural visions. Mumbiram’s treatment is free from painterly affectations of brushstrokes and shadows. The lines are sweet and simple, nearly minimal. Such leela ……! These books are a consummate union of aphrodisia and spirituality The books can be appreciated simply as books of Art and Love. Yet if you see it as a Paradigm of Divine Love, they elevate you to ecstatic heights of Esoteric High Spirituality. ....continued on backflap Sample Pages Distant Drummer Publishing www.distantdrummer.org firstname.lastname@example.org Mumbiram & Party A Universal Paradigm of Divine Love These five books present a very beautiful paradigm of Divine Love that is universally attractive. Generations of romantics will find in these works their Land of Divine Déjà vu’s, the perfect topics of meditation, as well as the very primeval source of aesthetic inspiration and creative expression. 56 PRELUDE In the vast expanses of forests of eastern India since times immemorial tribal communities have lived a life in harmony with nature and in intense communion with the creator. They sang and danced gracefully and ecstatically in glorification of Neel Maadhav (Krishna the Blue) that lived at Neelaachala (Blue Mountain). The tradition of temple-dancing in the renowned temple of Jagannath (Lord of the Universe) at Puri in Orissa has its origins in those tribal dances of the forest dwellers. Jayadev was born near Jagannath Puri in the 12th century. A gifted poet and a self-taught master of the Sanskrit language, Jayadev was inspired by the soulful dancing of a temple danseuse named Padmavati. The Gita Govinda is his only known work, yet it has brought him undying fame and admiration through the centuries. The Gita Govinda is in 12 Chapters. It has 24 dance compositions called prabandhas. These have each become favorites with all those lovers of the musical arts. Krishna, Radha and their mutual friend Sakhi are the only three characters that sing and dance the compositions. The rest is the narrator’s utterances that join the dance compositions into the storyline. The Table of Contents that follows lists the compositions by the refrain verses of each of them. This Conjugal Fountainhead has presented all the compositions except two that are invocations to the deities and to the audiences and would have been unneeded distractions for readers unfamiliar with the scriptural references. The intensity of the passions of the compositions is breath-taking. It is easy to lose track of the sequence of events described in those two nights and a day in the lives of the adolescent Radha and Krishna in the spring season in the beautiful bowers of Vrindavan. This is what really happened: One day in the spring season, Vasanta, while wandering in the forest Radha heard about how Krishna was flirting indiscriminately with all the other Gopis. Radha became very discouraged and depressed at the thought that Krishna was treating their love all too casually. Then in a sulking mood Radha decided to go somewhere else. Radha retired to the Kunja that was covered with creepers and vines and where the tops of the trees were resounding with the humming of companies of bumblebees obsessed with honey. one In that secluded place Radha confided in her Sakhi in a subdued mood. Radha recounted how they sported with Krishna magnificently on the night of the Raasa Dance. She clearly remembered all the lighthearted liberties they took with each other. She implored the Sakhi to arrange it so she is overwhelmed by erotic dreams and Krishna is also similarly agitated and that they are sporting together. In the meantime Krishna was also overwhelmed by thoughts about Radha. He lamented his flirting with other women in Radha´s presence. He felt sorry about making Radhika feel hurt and angry. Krishna sat in the Bamboo Nikunja on the Bank of the Yamuna. He was feeling dizzy with love and was very low energy. That is when Radhika’s friend approached him and described to him how Radha was feeling great separation from him and was agitated by Cupid’s penetrating arrows. Krishna decided to stay right where he was. He implored the Sakhi to go to Radha and soothe her with his assuring words and bring her over where he was. The Sakhi went to see Radha in the Bower of the Vines and narrated to her how Krishna was sitting forlorn without his Beloved on the Bank of Yamuna, at the famous Dheerasameer, where the wind blows steadily. Radha was totally immersed in the thoughts of Krishna yet she was unable to go out and meet him. The Sakhi came back to Krishna, who himself appeared in a daze of conjugal expectation. The Sakhi informed Krishna about Radha’s hopeless situation and how she repeatedly cried out “Hari, my Love! Hari, my Love!” In the meantime the full moon rose over the horizon of Vrindavan illuminating every corner with its cool rays. The moon kept rising in the sky and still Krishna did not come to see Radha. This increased the intense pangs of separation that Radha already felt. She cried out in desperation how she was badly let down not only by Love but even by her Youth and her Beauty. She felt badly let down by all her friends as well. She found the excruciating flames of separation unbearable. With no one to turn to she felt it was really better that she should die. She already felt nearly lifeless. When Radha noticed that the Sakhi who had come from Krishna was silent and depressed, Radha imagined the worst. She could clearly see Krishna enjoying himself with any of his many beautiful woman friends. two Radha somehow spent the whole night, wounded though she was by the arrows of Kamadeva. In the morning Krishna appeared at her door, humble and speaking sweet conciliatory words. Radha spoke to him with great anger: “ Oh Hari! Oh Madhava! Oh Keshava! Don’t tell me any lies ! Go follow that Lotus-Eyed One! She alone is able to cheer you up. Your chest is smeared with the red Alaktaka from the feet of your dear girlfriend. The meaning of that is obvious to everyone. Your and mine Love- Affair is famous all over Vrindavan as something very special and very beautiful. But now it is all over. You cheat! I am even more ashamed than sad when I look at you.” After quarrelling in this way with Krishna, Radha went into solitude with all her amorous fantasies broken to pieces. When the Sakhi came to see her, she found Radha morose with passion, filled with sadness and immersed in the thoughts of Krishna. The Sakhi cajoled Radha not to act so proud to Krishna howsoever much she cherished her self-respect. Soon, eventually, at the end of the day, Krishna went to see his beautiful Radhika with great eagerness. He found Radha bristling with anger. She was repeatedly sighing deep sighs. From her face he could see it was unbearable for her. Radha turned her face towards the Sakhis. Krishna spoke out with great happiness, but his voice was almost choking. He gently begged her to give up her haughtiness. The fire of amour was already burning his mind. He confessed how he thirsted to drink the nectar of her Lotus Face as the only solace for his malady. In this way Krishna cheered up the doe-eyed Radha by speaking to her for a long time with words that were full of love, humility and assurances. Thereafter Krishna went away to the Kunja where he had fixed for themselves a nice bed. When evening came, Radha had fully recovered from her desperation. As it got very dark, Radha dressed herself in clothes that were clearly arranged to arouse Krishna’s passions. The Sakhi urged Radha earnestly to go and meet Krishna on the beautiful Island of Reeds. three When the Sakhi saw Krishna at the entrance of the Nikunja, she ushered Radha to the company of her dear Madhava. Radha bashfully but happily met Krishna’s eyes. Then as if hypnotized she moved towards him, amorously resounding the bells around her hips. There she saw Krishna waiting to unite with her for a long time. His face looked very attractive as he tried to hide his great joy at seeing her. When Krishna did finally meet Radha, tears of joy profusely flowed from Radha’s eyes. Now the Sakhi left Krishna and Radha alone. Krishna looked at Radha with great Love and said: “Radhike, I have followed you all the way up to here. Now will you just listen to me!” The conjugal meeting between Radha and Krishna was very beautiful and quite wonderful. In the stillness of the morning, Krishna looked at Radha. When the exhausted Radha stepped out covering her breasts and thighs with her hands, she looked gloriously fresh and innocent. Even while Radha spoke Krishna hovered around her in a playful, sweet mood. Then Krishna was asked to decorate Radha’s face, arrange her loin-cloth, place garlands in her hair, put bracelets around her hands, tie bells around her ankles and so on. Krishna lovingly did just that. four 62 CONTENTS Imagine I - IV Conjugal Fountainhead Sample Chapters Chapter 1 “Dear friend ! The beautiful spring season has arrived. Krishna is sporting and dancing with young beautiful damsels. I feel sorry for those who are separated from their beloved in this beautiful Vasanta!” 8 “Oh lovely Radhe, see how wonderfully Krishna is sporting in the midst of a crowd of young beautiful damsels.” 14 Chapter 2 29 “That is how I remember Krishna when he sported magnificently on the night of the Raasa Dance. I clearly remember all the lighthearted liberties we took with each other.” 21 “Dear Sakhi, arrange it so that I am overwhelmed by erotic dreams and Krishna is also similarly agitated and that we are sporting together.” 25 (continued... Chapter 3 “Alas ! Radhika is hurt and angry with me.” 31 Chapter 4 “Radha ia feeling great separation from you. She is constantely thinking of you. She is very much afraid of Cupid’s penetrating arrows.” 39 “Radha is feeling intense separation from you. Oh, Keshava!” 42 Chapter 5 “Krishna is suffering greatly without you!” 47 “Krishna is sitting on the Bank of Yamuna at the famous Dheerasameer where the wind blows steadily. He is wearing a garland of forest flowers and his hands are trembling in expectation of pressing the firm breasts of the Gopis.” 49 Chapter 6 “She repeatedly cries out in the Kunja: “Hari, my Love! Hari, my Love!” 59 Chapter 7 39 “I have been badly let down by my friends. Who shall I now turn to?” 65 “Certainly some beautiful woman, that is far superior to me in every way, is enjoying with Krishna.” 69 “Krishna is triumphantly sporting in the Forest on the Bank of the Yamuna.” 71 “So why would the Lady who is enjoying Krishna complain?” 75 Chapter 8 Radha spoke: “Oh Hari ! Oh Madhava ! Oh Keshava ! Don’t tell me any lies, go follow that Lotus-Eyed One ! She alone is able to cheer you up.” 81 Chapter 9 “Radhe, I know you clearly cherish your self-respect, but please don’t act so proud to Krishna.” 87 Chapter 10 “My dear gentle Sweatheart. Give up this horrible haughtiness. The fire of Kamadeva is already burning my mind. If you let me drink the nectar of your Lotus Face that will be some solace.” 93 Chapter 11 “Guileless Radhe, you must go there and meet Krishna. He is waiting for you!” 103 “Radhe, now enter the company of your Dear Madhava.” 108 There she saw Krishna waiting to unite with her for a long time. His face looked like the very abode of Kamadeva as he tried to hide his great joy at seeing her. 112 Chapter 12 55 “Radhike, I have followed you all the way up to here. Now will you just listen to me !” 119 Even while Radha spoke in this way Krishna hovered around her in a playful, sweet mood. 126 (continued... END-NOTES Notes about the ‘High Five of Love’ 135 Notes about the Authors 139 A Brief Note about Rasa Theory 146 About Translating Gita Govinda 149 GLOSSARY 155 INDEX 171 The Distant Drummer imprint 175 End-Notes in other Volumes: The Rasa Masterpiece of Modern Art: “Forest Women visit Krishna and the Gopis” (Five Songs of Love, Vol.One) About Translating Vyasa’s “Five Songs” (Five Songs of Love, Vol.One) About Translating “The Jewel-Box of True Love” (The Jewel-Box of Highest Secrets of True Love, Vol.Three) The Confluence of the Scholarly and Folk traditions in “Vrindavan Diaries” (Vrindavan Diaries, Vol.Four) Who´s Who of Vraja (Vrindavan Diaries, Vol.Four) Landmarks in Vraja (Vrindavan Diaries, Vol.Four) On the bank of the Yamuna (Deluges of Ecstasy, Vol.Five) Across the Potomac (Deluges of Ecstasy, Vol.Five) On this side of the Potomac (Deluges of Ecstasy, Vol.Five) In the foreword of Deluges of Ecstasy you find ‘Deluges of Ecstasy - A Rasa Classic’, ‘The Prema Vivarta Mood’ and ‘An American Classic’. Imagine ! Life in the material world seems such a ridiculous proposition, even a cruel one. Everything that is created must come to an end. There seems to be no clue whatsoever about who we are and if there is anything more to us than a heap of atoms and molecules that are held together by some laws of matter that we can only surrender to. Do we have a free will ? Are we responsible for what we do or for what we are? What are feelings ? Just some chemical reactions ? What is happiness ? What is unhappiness ? What are desires ? Whose idea is it to have such a creation at all ? Is it possible to find out the answers to these questions when all we can perceive through our senses are only arrangements and rearrangements of matter ? Are living entities essentially different than mere arrangements of matter ? Is there a domain that endures even beyond this all too limited and transient domain ? I Welcome to the world of imagination, inspiration and revelations. Welcome to a world that is so very familiar yet so very fanciful. Everything that we know in this material world also exists there, yet so much more and so very sure ! Goloka Vrindavan is a timeless space because time only makes everything continue and proliferate in the lives of the inhabitants of Goloka. Everything in Goloka is living and has a personality. Nothing is dead matter. Everything is sentient and eternal. Nothing ever ceases to exist. There is no fear. All love is pure. There is no envy whatsoever. Goloka Vrindavan is the planet of Krishna where everybody is madly in love with Krishna as if it is the only thing that ever matters ! It is a lovely pastoral scene. The cows are grazing in the pastures in the glades.The trees are laden with flowers and fruit. The bumblebees are hovering over them in symphony along with cuckoos that are calling out in harmony. The doe-eyed damsels of firm bosoms and slender waists are finding excuses to go to the forests to meet Krishna the most beautiful witty boy who plays the flute. II We all belong to Goloka, originally and eternally. Then by some causeless fancy of Krishna, the Supreme, envy enters our Love for Krishna. That is when we have to take birth in this perverted reflection of that world of perfect love and harmony, Goloka. Then Krishna and his eternal associates decide to descend to the material world and give a glimpse of Goloka to the inhabitants and thereby dispel the deep darkness of their existence conditioned by the stringent laws of material nature. That glimpse of our eternal original existence is so all-enchanting that everything in the material world reminds us of our blissful existence in the company of Krishna and his associates in Goloka. Those visions of Krishna sporting on our planet just as he always does in Goloka are recounted, retold and reveled in by poets, playwrites, singers, dancers as well as artists of all times. These visions become the only worthwhile objects of meditation, they prepare us for our journey back to Goloka. Even a little that you come to know about Krishna makes you want to know more about him. Such is the magic of his personality. III Krishna’s very brief dialogue with his best friend Arjuna on the great battlefield of Kurukshetra is the celebrated Bhagavat Gita, a book that has inspired men to greatness for over 5000 years. Be they philosophers or politicians, poets or artists; all have found the answers to the most perplexing intimate questions of their souls in the Bhagavat Gita. It is thrilling to find out that this philosopher of incisive intellect was also the most charming lover of his times. These books are about the exploits of the young boy-man Krishna in and around the pastoral village Vrindavan on the bank of the meandering Yamuna river. It is mostly about love, friendship, grace and fun. Sages who have entirely conquered envy have found these acts of causeless sporting of the Supreme to be the most profound and pleasing objects of meditation. One whiff of its aroma has driven successful worldly men to abandon family, friends and society to wander around the earth begging for alms like birds ! IV V Conjugal Fountainhead 1 2 Chapter II 19 While wandering in the forest Radha heard about how Krishna was flirting indiscriminately with all the other Gopis. Radha became very discouraged and depressed at the thought that Krishna was treating their love all too casually. Then in a sulking mood Radha decided to go somewhere else. Radha retired to the Kunja that was covered with creepers and vines and where the tops of the trees were resounding with the humming of companies of bumblebees obsessed with honey. In that secluded place Radha spoke to the Sakhi in a subdued mood. ll 1 ll 20 “The enchanting nectar of his lips was inspiring his flute and the atmosphere was filled with sweet vibrations. His head moved from side to side, his eyes danced from corner to corner and his earrings twinkled on his cheeks.” ll 1 ll “That is how I remember Krishna when he sported magnificently on the night of the Raasa Dance. I clearly remember all the lighthearted liberties we took with each other.” “His hair was entwined with rows of beautiful peacock feathers. He was dressed in soft graceful clothes that shone in the colors of the rainbow.” ll 2 ll His petal-like lips were adorned by an enthusiastic smile and reminded you of the red Bimba Fruit. The lips looked clearly very eager to kiss the full-hipped Gopis that were surrounding him.” ll 3 ll 21 “As the countless multitude of Gopis embraced him with their graceful arms they experienced goose bumps all over their bodies. The jewels that adorned Krishna’s hands, feet and chest were dispelling all darkness away.” ll 4 ll “The sandalwood Tilak on Krishna’s beautiful dark forehead reminded you of the moon playing hide and seek through the clouds. Krishna’s chest that mercilessly pressed the full breasts of the Gopis appeared like rising ramparts on this landscape.” ll 5 ll “A beautiful ear-ornament in the form of a gem-studded shark was increasing the beauty of Krishna’s cheeks. I could go on describing the beautiful form of Krishna clad in yellow silks. But suffice it to say that demons as well as demigods, the great liberated souls as well as ordinary mortals, all were fully overwhelmed by his Beauty.” ll 6 ll “Krishna’s floating sidelong glances were hypnotizing me as well as the other Gopis. Suffice it to say that this beautiful vision of a meeting under the Kadamba Tree is capable by itself to dispel all fear of the dangers of the Kaliyuga.” ll 7 ll 22 84 “I know Krishna is sporting lustily with other young women of Vraja without me. Yet I only think of his good qualities and I only remember the good times we had. I am totally helpless about that. Such are the inconceivable ways of amour.” ll 1 ll 24 “Arrange it so that I’ve appeared at the dense secluded Nikunja and I am looking around in expectation. Krishna is hiding and smilingly looking forward to prolonged amorous activity.” ll 1 ll “Dear Sakhi, arrange it so that I am overwhelmed by erotic dreams and Krishna is also similarly agitated and that we are sporting together.” “Arrange it so that I am shy because it is our first meeting and he is making me favorable with his sweet clever talk.” ll 2 ll “Arrange it so that we are engaged in pleasant smiling conversation while our loinclothes are getting loose.” ll 3 ll 25 “Arrange it so that I am lying on a bed of soft bamboo-shoots. And he is lying on my breast for a long time.” ll 4 ll “Arrange it so that he is hugging me and kissing me and in return I am kissing and hugging him.“ ll 5 ll “Arrange it so that my eyes are becoming lazy and closing down. And his cheeks are looking wonderful with goose bumps appearing on their sides.” ll 6 ll “Arrange it so that I am wet with the sweat of exertion. And he is getting more excited with the intoxication of love.” ll 7 ll “Arrange it so that I am uttering sweet melodies like the cuckoo bird. And he has surpassed all the prescriptions in the various texts on the science of conjugal union.” ll 8 ll 26 “Arrange it so that the flowers in my hair are loosened and scattered and his fingernails are making patterns on my firm bosom.” ll 9 ll “Arrange it so that my ankle-bells are continuously twinkling. And he is bringing the amorous expedition to its ecstatic fulfillment. The bells in my waistband are jingling and he is lifting my hair and kissing me.” ll 10 ll “Arrange it so that I am exhausted by the pleasure of love and his beautiful Lotus Eyes are half closed. My delicate body is spread out in unbearable pleasure and Krishna is very happy himself and making Kamadeva also happy.” ll 11 ll 27 28 Chapter VII 63 In the meantime the full moon rose over the horizon of Vrindavan illuminating every corner with its cool rays. The moon verily appeared like the Sandalwood Tilak on the forehead of Lady Sky. But look closely, the moon is covered with unseemly spots. When Lovers are going to meet their Beloved, the moon betrays their journey to the secret meeting place. It must be for this misdemeanor that the moon’s face is covered with spots. ll 1 ll The moon kept rising in the sky and still Krishna did not come to see Radha. This increased the intense pangs of separation that Radha already felt. She cried out in desperation and spoke out loudly: ll 2 ll 64 “Hari has not come to the forest at the appointed time. In vain is my youth, in vain is my beauty. “ ll 1 ll “I have been badly let down by my friends. Who shall I now turn to?” “I came to this dense forest just to meet him. And he has rent my heart apart by the Arrows of Kamadeva.” ll 2 ll “I have said good-bye to my family and to my home, so it is really better that I should die. I am feeling lifeless. How can I survive these excruciating flames of separation?” Il 3 ll 65 “This night is so beautiful, but it is only making me sad. Krishna is certainly with some lucky woman whose Cup of Good Karma is full.” ll 4 ll “Alas, I find my bejeweled bracelets as well as other precious ornaments to be an unbearable burden. My whole body is burning in the fire of separation.” ll 5 ll “My body is tender as a flower and Kamadeva’s arrows are also made of flowers. So why is it not a wonder that this flower garland on my bosom is almost killing me!” ll 6 ll “So I am deciding to lie down at this obscure spot in the forest that is overgrown with bamboo and cane. It is obvious Krishna does not even remember me.” ll 7 ll 66 “So what must have happened? Did Krishna go to see some beautiful lady? Or his friends would not let him abandon the game they are playing? Or is he wandering aimlessly in and out of the forest? I am sure Krishna is exhausted. But I also know that when he is coming to see me, he is unable to stop or wait anywhere along the way. Krishna had promised to see me in this beautiful Kunja that is overgrown with reeds and vines. And still he has not come.” ll 1 ll When Radha saw the Sakhi who had come from Krishna, she noticed that the Sakhi was silent and depressed. Radha imagined the worst. She could clearly see Krishna enjoying himself with any of his many beautiful woman friends. ll 2 ll 67 18 “I can just see her beautifully dressed for the occasion of love. Her hair is loose and the flowers in her hair are scattered.” ll 1 ll “Certainly some beautiful woman, that is far superior to me in every way, is enjoying with Krishna.” “She is trembling in expectation of Krishna’s enthusiastic embraces. The garlands hanging over her full bosom are also trembling uncontrollably.” ll 2 ll “The curls that are encircling her moon-like face are moving attractively. She is totally lost in drinking the Nectar of His Lotus Lips.” ll 3 ll 69 “Her swinging earrings are striking against her beautiful cheeks. Her thighs are lustily swinging and her waist-bells are also loudly jingling.” ll 4 ll “She is looking at her Beloved, sometimes shyly, sometimes coyly and sometimes laughingly. In the passion of sexual excitement she is making various meaningless wonderful sounds.” ll 5 ll “The hair all over her body is standing on end. She is throbbing uncontrollably. Her breathing is heavy, her eyes are closing and amour is rising to ever new heights.” ll 6 ll “The Brave Beautiful One, who engaged Krishna in a one-on-one Battle of Love is now covered with drops of sweat all over her body. The lucky combatant is now blissfully spread out on the equally wet chest of her Beloved.” ll 7 ll 70 “Krishna and his Beautiful Lady are both quite excited. Her face is looking very beautiful and her lips are arranged in a pout of expectation. Krishna is making a Tilak out of Deer-Musk on her forehead. It looks as if he is drawing a rabbit on her moon-like face.” ll 1 ll “Krishna is triumphantly sporting in the Forest on the Bank of the Yamuna.” “Her thick dark hair looks like the forest of Kamadeva. Rather it looks like an assembly of dark clouds. The flowers that Krishna is arranging in her hair look as beautiful as lightening in those dark clouds.” ll 2 ll “Her beautiful firm breasts are like the wide open sky. The nail-marks that Krishna has left on her bosom appear like as many crescent moons rising in that sky. And the pearl ornaments that Krishna is arranging on her bosom appear like the stars in that sky.” ll 3 ll 71 “Her arms are tender and graceful like the Stems of the Lotus Flower. And the palms of her hand appear like cool Leaves of the Lotus Plant. When Krishna puts bracelets of Marakata Gems in her arms it appears as if bumblebees are swarming around that Lotus.” ll 4 ll “Her thighs are verily the abode of Kamadeva’s beloved consort Rati Devi. Or is it the Golden Throne of Kamadeva himself? When Krishna sees her abundant and opulent limbs, he is extremely agitated. When he arranges a Mala of precious gems around her thighs it appears like the gate of Kamadeva is being decorated for an enthusiastic welcome.” ll 5 ll “Krishna takes her bare feet on his own bosom. Those feet are tender as bamboo shoots. The nails of her toes appear like a beautiful garland of jewels. Krishna paints the soles of her feet with beautiful red Alaktaka Colors.” ll 6 ll “That Wicked Younger Brother of Balarama is again and again enjoying some Beautiful-Eyed Lady. Tell me dear friend, what am I doing in this dense forest waiting for him in vain!” ll 7 ll 72 90 “If that heartless cheat does not come at all, why should you be sad dear Sakhi? He does as he pleases and he has many girlfriends. So if he goofs off how are you to be blamed? My own mind is attracted to the wonderful qualities of Krishna so much that the expectation of seeing him almost breaks my heart. Yet my mind is helplessly drawn to him and helplessly makes plans of going to see him.” ll 1 ll 74 “Krishna is wearing a Garland of Beautiful Forest Flowers and his eyes are unsteady like a Lotus Flower in the wind. So why would the Lady who is enjoying Krishna complain about the bed of tender bamboo shoots?” ll 1 ll “So why would the Lady who is enjoying Krishna complain?” “The expressions on Krishna’s face are as beautiful as a Blooming Lotus in a Clear Pond. So why would the Lady who is enjoying Krishna burn in the flames of Kamadeva?” ll 2 ll “Krishna speaks sweet gentle nectarian words with his Beloved. So why would his Beloved find the cool sandal-scented wind from the Malaya Mountain unpleasant?” ll 3 ll 75 “Krishna touches his Beloved with hands that are cool and soft like a Land Lotus. So why would his Beloved complain about the cool moonbeams?” ll 4 ll “Krishna is as beautiful as a freshly appearing cloud full of water. So why would his Beloved be hurting in the heart from long separation?” ll 5 ll “Krishna is clad in beautiful soft golden clothes. So why would his Beloved care if her friends tease her?” ll 6 ll “Krishna is the best amongst all the eligible young men in the whole universe. So what ever could make his Beloved be afflicted by this incurable malady that is afflicting me?” ll 7 ll 76 “Oh Sandal-Scented Wind from the Malaya Mountain! You are very pleasing even to Kamadeva. Please stop playing so fickle with me. You are famous as the very Life-Air of the Universe. Please bring Krishna in front of me, otherwise my Life-Air is going to leave me.” ll 1 ll “I am absolutely smitten by Krishna. And just see the result. My girlfriends are appearing to me like my enemies. The cool wind is appearing to me like blazing flames of fire. The moonlight is appearing to me like poison. And yet my mind is attracted to him alone, again and again. It just goes to show, that the amorous desires of beautiful doe-eyed women are absolutely inexplicable and uncontrollable, like a horde of wild elephants in rut.” ll 2 ll “Alright, Wind from the Malaya Mountain, make my life miserable. Okay, Kamadeva, kill me with your arrows. I don’t want to go home again. And dear Yamuna, I hear you are the Sister of the God of Death. So please envelop me with your waves. It is the only way I can think of ending this desperate misery.” ll 3 ll 77 44 Chapter XII 117 After the Sakhis left, Krishna looked at Radha with great Love. There she stood looking at the bed made of tender leaves and shoots. Her lips trembled in a faint smile. Now she was feeling bashful. Now she was feeling overwhelmed by great passion. Krishna said to his Beloved: ll 1 ll 118 “Radhike! Here I have come to meet you as a guest. Yet I request you to do just this one favor for me. Place your lotus-like feet on this bed of tender shoots. Let it be seen how your feet easily defeat the beauty of these tender shoots.” ll 1 ll “Radhike, I have followed you all the way up to here. Now will you just listen to me!” “Let me join you on this bed. I have been following you just as your ankle bells are following your feet. You have come a long way, let me press your feet.” ll 2 ll “Your face is beautiful as an Ocean of Nectar. Please speak sweet words to me, like drops of nectar from this ocean. Here I remove the cloth that is holding your breasts captive. That will also remove the great pangs of separation that I am suffering for a long time.” ll 3 ll 119 “Your breasts are trembling with passion and I see goose bumps all over your body. I request you to place your full breasts on my chest. It is the only way to mitigate this fever of passion I am suffering.” ll 4 ll “I have been thinking of you all the time. But without your company and our blissful intimate union, my body is burning in the fire of separation. Proud One, I am your slave and almost dead. Bring me back to life with the nectar from your beautiful lips.” ll 5 ll “Without your company my ears have been hurting listening to the loud calls of the cuckoos. My Moon-Faced Beloved, please soothe my ears by the jingling sounds of bells around your hips. Let me hear your sweet voice. It is the only cure for this great sadness I have been experiencing.” ll 6 ll “I am greatly hurt by your inconceivable anger. Your eyes look exhausted by the agony of passion. They look almost closed as if in bashfulness. If you will look up at me it will make us both very happy.” ll 7 ll 120 121 122 The conjugal meeting between Radha and Krishna was very beautiful and quite wonderful. When they were embracing deeply the goose bumps that broke out on their bodies seemed like an obstruction. When they were lovingly observing the ecstatic expressions on each other’s faces even the blinking of the eyes seemed like an obstruction. The sweet nothings they spoke to each other seemed like an obstruction in their long passionate kisses. In short, at the height of the conjugal battle the great joy they experienced also appeared like a distraction. ll 1 ll Krishna was firmly constricted between Radha’s arms. He was subdued under the weight of her firm breasts. She scratched him with her fingernails and gave him bites with her teeth. She pulled him down by the hair. The nectar from her lips made him unconscious. What pleasure Krishna gets from such harsh treatment only he knows. Indeed Kamadeva’s ways are inconceivable. ll 2 ll 123 When the conjugal battle between them reached its height she boldly climbed upon him. She was feeling victorious. Just then her thighs became still and her eyes closed. Men and women are in many ways quite different. ll 3 ll In the stillness of the morning, Krishna looked at Radha. Her bosom was decorated with his nail-marks. Her sleepy eyes looked red. On the other hand, the redness of her lips looked quite faded. All her garlands looked scattered and her hair was disheveled. Her girdle-bells hanged loose and low on her hips. All this had the same effect on Krishna as the Arrows of Kamadeva himself. Indeed these arrows pierced Krishna’s mind very deeply. ll 4 ll When the exhausted Radha went out of bed, her hair was free of all bondage. Curly locks beautifully encircled her face. Her forehead was covered with drops of sweat. Her full lips looked uneven in color. The beauty of her breasts far surpassed the beauty of the gem-studded necklace she wore. Her skirt was in a hopeless condition. Yet when Radha bashfully stepped out covering her breasts and thighs with her hands, she looked gloriously fresh and innocent. ll 5 ll 124 Her eyes are half-closed. She is fully engrossed in the conjugal ecstasy she has newly discovered. Sometimes she is repeatedly sighing. When she makes strange murmuring sounds overcome by ecstasy, her teeth and lips look most attractive. After repeated embraces her breasts look still and satisfied. Lucky is the man who sees the face of his doe-eyed Beloved after she has climbed the highest peaks of ecstasy and has lost all self-control. ll 6 ll At the end of the conjugal union every limb of Radha’s body was placid. All of a sudden Radha spoke to Krishna with great love and respect. ll 7 ll 125 “These two brothers on my bosom are really the two beautiful auspicious Kalashas of Kamadeva. Decorate them with deer musk, flowers and leaves. Your hands smell cool like sandalwood.” ll 1 ll Even while Radha spoke in this way Krishna hovered around her in a playful, sweet mood. “My eyes are always releasing Kamadeva’s arrows. It will be better if you put mascara on my eyelashes. Then it will look like bumblebees are hovering around my face. Please redo my Kaajal. It is smeared by the kisses from your lips.” ll 2 ll “The pupils of my eyes are jumping, like graceful deer, to the outer edges of my eyes. The only thing that stops them in that direction are my ears. They look like Kamadeva’s lassos. Decorate my ears with ornaments. You are dressed so nicely.” ll 3 ll 126 127 128 “Take your time arranging the curls of my dark hair around my face, so there will be more bumblebees hovering around my Clear Lotus Face. You always do it in a novel witty way.” ll 4 ll “Lotus-Faced Beloved! Wipe off the drops of sweat from my forehead. If you put a nice Tilak of Deer Musk on it then it will look like the beautiful moon with the beautiful spots on it.” ll 5 ll “Do you like my hair, when it is messed up after love-making? Arrange flowers in my hair. It will look like a proud peacock’s rising crest. Those will be Kamadeva’s flags and festoons.” ll 6 ll “My firm full thighs lead to a beautiful cave that is fit for Indra’s Baby Elephant. Be descent. Decorate my thighs with gem-studded garlands and soft silky cloth.” ll 7 ll 129 Thus Krishna was asked to decorate Radha’s face, arrange her loincloth, place garlands in her hair, put bracelets around her hand, tie bells around her ankles and so on. Krishna lovingly did just that. Krishna looked glorious just in his yellow silk dhoti. ll 1 ll May the intelligent listener of this Gita Govinda happily discover in it consummate musical excellence, divine meditation, secrets of conjugal aesthetics, as well as inspired poetic variety. It is all possible, because Jayadeva who has composed the Gita Govinda is fully immersed in the Love of Krishna. ll 2 ll Lady Honey! You are not even in the competition. Dear Sugar! You are quite tasteless. Milk seems like water. Mangoes can only cry. Nobody looks at grapes anymore. Even Beloved’s lips lose all attraction. The taste of this beautiful composition of Jayadeva surpasses everything as it brings out the very essence of Shringara Rasa. ll 3 ll 130 131 END-NOTES 133 133 134 134 The five books that are presented here are links of an unbroken Tradition of over 5000 years. “FIVE SONGS of RASA” is a favorite selection from the Tenth Canto of Shri Vyasadeva’s authoritative work, Shrimad Bhagavatam, composed nearly 5000 years ago, at the beginning of the present Kali Yuga. Vyasadeva also composed the great epic Mahabharata. Shrimad Bhagavatam is all about Krishna the real hero of the Mahabharata.Vyasadeva is considered to be the literary incarnation of Krishna himself ! “Conjugal Fountainhead” is the celebrated Gita Govinda of 12th century poet Shri Jayadev. It is about intense longings and consummate unions of the lovers Radha and Krishna in the spring season in Vrindavan. Shri Jayadeva’s melodious Sanskrit compositions of “Gita Govinda” have been inspiring singers and dancers of India since the 12th century. These remain unsurpassed examples of perfect harmony of poetic excellence and musical virtuosity. 135 135 “The Jewel-Box of Highest Secrets of True Love” tells of a delightfully witty and touching episode when Krishna appears as an exquisitely beautiful demigoddess in the company of Radha and her sakhis, only to lustily criticize Krishna’s miserable failure as a True Lover. Radha then reveals the most confidential secrets of True Love. Shri Vishvanath Chakravarti, who is considered to be a re-incarnation of Rupa Gosvamiji, lived in Vrindavan in the 17th century. “VRINDAVAN DIARIES” give us intimate accounts of happenings in the woods of Vrindavan, in the local vraja dialect of Vrindavan. These folk-accounts that are passed on in oral traditions are traceable to Shri Rupa Gosvami’s early 16th century Sanskrit plays. The scholars of Vrindavan and the folk-people of Vraja have a very innate on-going symbiotic rapport. Rupa Gosvami is considered to be the original exponent of ‘spontaneous attachment to Krishna’ as distinct from ‘attachment cultivated by practice of scriptural injunctions’. 136 136 “DELUGES of ECSTASY” were experienced in the age of matted hair and xerox copies somewhere along the Potomac river, in the shadow of the Library on the Hill, amongst inhabitants of Haridvaar and RadhaCliff. As a compilation of very contemporary vraja déjà vu’s it makes all the earlier works eminently relevant. The first four books of ‘The High Five of Love’ set the mood and provide the context for Mumbiram’s: “Deluges of Ecstasy”, a path-breaking work of theophily in the highest Prema Vivarta mood, verily a passionate Love Affair. “Deluges of Ecstasy” is an original contemporary work by Mumbiram that was composed and compiled during a young Mumbiram’s 12 year sojourn of North America. It has been a work ahead of its times by a quarter of a century. 137 137 138 138 Notes about the Authors ‘Krishna Dvaipayana’ Vyasa Matsyagandha was a fisherman’s handsome daughter who had an affair with the learned sage Parashar on an island in the stream of the great Ganga river. The child that she bore was Vyasa. He was secretly brought up on the island by the unwed mother. When the brave dark-hued child eventually went away on its own, the mother returned to her father as a virgin. King Shantanu was smitten by her beauty and made her his favorite queen. Their progeny turned out to be genetically impotent. Thereupon Vyasa was invoked to beget inheritors for the Dynasty. Thus Vyasa became the common ancestor of the warring cousins of the great epic Mahabharata that Vyasa eventually composed. The Five Songs of Rasa is a celebrated selection from his Shrimad Bhagavatam that he composed to write specifically about Krishna, the real hero of the Mahabharata. ‘The Dark Sage born on the Island’ (Krishna Dvaipayana) is considered a literary incarnation (avatar) of Krishna. 139 139 Shri Jayadeva Shri Jayadeva lived near Jagannath Puri in the 12th century. His passionate love affair with the cortesan beauty Padmavati is said to be the inspiration behind his superexcellent compositions describing Radha and Krishna’s intimate conjugal meetings. Or was it the other way around ? The lyrical compositions in the ‘Gita Govinda’ have inspired dancers through the centuries to present their own interpretations of the rhyme and rhythm of Krishna’s separation and union with Beloved Radha as described in this supremely sonorous work. Jayadeva’s love for Padmavati was also put to some life-or-death ordeals but Love finally triumphed. 140 140 Rupa Goswami Rupa along with brother Sanatana grew up to be fine scholars of the Sanskrit and Persian languages, then gave it all up to rise in the court of the Muslim ruler Hussain Shah as the Prime Ministers. Their tryst with destiny came when in a secret midnight rendezvous Caitanya Mahaprabhu made them realize their real identity as loving confidential assistants of Krishna and his damsels. Rupa along with brother Sanatana and nephew Jeeva gave up all worldly glories and wandered around the land of Vraja in the mood of the Gopis of Vrindavan. Their divine longings inspired great literary works that brought alive the ever-youthful paradigm of Divine Love: KRISHNA. According to Rupa, attachment to God that develops spontaneously can bring one into closer communion than attachment cultivated by religious practice. Rupa’s original Krishna Dramas were popular amongst scholars and folk-people alike. In his monumental works, ‘Bhaktirasa-amrita-sindhu’ (Ocean of Immortal Love) and ‘Ujjvala Niilamani’ (The Blue Gem of Conjugal Love), the moods of all the intimate associates of Krishna are described in great detail. Rupa laid out the principles of the Rasa Theory of aesthetic appreciation. 141 141 Vishvanath Chakravarti Appearing over a 100 years after Rupa Goswami, Vishvanath Chakravarti manifested the same glorious combination of divine revelations and extraordinary literary excellence. Prema Samputa (Jewel-Box of Highest Secrets of True Love) is his most delightful original work. Vishvanath Chakravarti wandered in the foothills of Govardhan Mountain without any place home. It never rained where Vishvanath Chakravarti was writing ! He has written an authoritative commentary on every important classic of Krishna Literature. Rival scholars in the courts of Jaypur Maharajas once sent contract-killers to get rid of him. When the assassins came face-to- face with Chakravartiji they could only see a young damsel out in the forest with her girlfriends to pick flowers on behalf of Beloved Radha ! The sensitive intelligent wit manifest in the dialogues and dramatic situations that he conjures up is glowing testimony that Krishna is the ultimate inspiration of all Artistic Excellence. As an erudite scholar of the classics, a passionate lover of Krishna and an author of great original wit, Vishvanath Chakravarti is revered as reincarnation of Rupa Gosvami. 142 142 Mumbiram Artist Mumbiram grew up in India in an atmosphere inundated with Art and Sanskrit scholarship. His love for Mathematics brought him to America. A fateful introduction to the “Incredible Emotional Ways of Love and Friendship in the Beloved Land of Vraja” (vraja anuraga riiti ) brought about a transformation in the gifted artist who now had a doctor of philosophy degree from Berkeley. Deluges of Ecstasy gives us a good picture of how Mumbiram lived in America as a sovereign artist, an itinerant theophile, a philosopher outside the walls of academia. It was composed when Mumbiram was living in an abandoned cowshed on a farm in Potomac Maryland. Its protagonist Mumbi is an adolescent androgynous personality not to be mistaken for Mumbiram the author-artist of this marvelous rasa classic who is also passionately in love with Krishna. Krishna’s Vraja boyfriends find even a moment’s separation from Krishna to be intolerable. Mumbi has a déjà vu in every lane, around every corner and across every bridge over the river. Returning to India, after 12 eventful years in America, Mumbiram produced the masterly paintings appearing in this ensemble and more. His art that goes beyond the caste-barriers of India was readily admired and appreciated 143 143 by art-lovers from all corners of the world. His residence had a steady stream of handsome visitors of the indigenous castes and tribes of India on the one hand and overseas art-lovers that were attracted by his very unique fame on the other hand. Mumbiram’s paintings have been admired for the same guileless charm and passion that the real-life rustic exotic dark beauties appearing in those spontaneous renderings exude. Yet the broader perspective which would provide the integrated understanding of his versatile virtuosity remained elusive. Juxtaposed with the verses of the great rasa masters the full impact of Mumbiram’s contribution as one of the leading artists of our times becomes all too evident. Mumbiram’s poems speak in idiom that is honed on the best that American Universities can produce. Yet in Mumbiram’s writing we hear the voice of one who has imbibed the best that a classical India stands for. One cannot help feeling that here Mumbiram is fulfilling Walt Whitman´s “Passage to India”. The poet who will arrive after all the explorations and discoveries have been accomplished has arrived. He is offering a universal paradigm of Man-God rapport that can unite us all. 144 144 145 145 A Brief Note about Rasa Theory Rasa Theory is about the qualitative shades and textures of emotions aroused in the personalities appearing in a work of art or literature as also the emotions that are aroused in the viewers or readers of such works. The nuances of such arousal of emotions as also the bodily and behavioural symptoms of such ecstatic states are the subject matter of Rasa Theory. Rasa Theory enables us to evolve a noble ideal for critical appraisal of qualities of personalities. It is a Personalist Theory of aesthetics. Classical Rasa Theory of critical appreciation of art and literature recognizes eight moods of a woman in love. Such as when she eagerly hopes to meet him (utkanthitaa), when she goes to meet him secretly or has him visit her secretly (abhisaarikaa), when she invites him then decorates her house and herself and waits for him (vaasakasajjaa), when he cheats on her (khanditaa), when he doesn’t come when promised (vipralabdhaa), when she quarrels with him then repents in solitude (kalahaantaritaa), when he is gone on a journey (proshitabhartrikaa), when he is obedient and agreeable (svaadhiinapatikaa). Krishna is considered dhiirlalit. He is light-hearted, youthful and free of anxieties. He is amorous, sporting, charming and graceful. He is vidagdha. He is clever, shrewd, sharp, subtle,…, intriguing. 146 146 The five rasas in devotional context are: shaanta (neutral), daasya (servitude), sakhya (friendship), vaatsalya (filial affection) and maadhurya (conjugal) rasas. The Sakhi is in a combination of dasya and sakhya rasas. The “Five Songs of Rasa” give us a taste of all the five rasas in different degrees and different ecstatic admixtures from the versatile genius of Vyasadeva himself. “Conjugal Fountainhead” (Gita Govinda) is about attachment between Radha and Krishna in the madhurya rasa. “The Jewel-Box of Highest Secrets of True Love” is esoteric and pure madhurya rasa. The predominant rasas in “Vrindavan Diaries” are sakhya and madhurya. Radha, Krishna and their associates are called aalambana vibhaava. All things that are stimuli for ecstatic love of Krishna are called uddiipana vibhaava. These may include: His transcendental qualities, His uncommon activities, His smiling features, His apparel, His garlands, His flute, His buffalo horn, His leg bells, His conchshell, His footprints, His place of pastimes (such as Vrindavan), His favorite plant (tulasi) and His devotees. The bodily symptoms that are manifested by one in love are called anubhaava. These include: dancing, rolling on the ground, singing very loudly, stretching the body, crying loudly, yawning, breathing very heavily, neglecting the presence of others, drooling, laughing like a madman, wheeling the head and belching. There are eight other ecstatic symptoms known as saattvik bhaavas. These are: becoming stunned, perspiring, standing of the hairs on the body, faltering of the voice, trembling of the body, changing bodily colors, shedding tears, and devastation. 147 147 These may appear in combinations in a person in love with Krishna. Yet all of them are known to appear simultaneously only in Radharani. There are other expressions of ecstatic love called vyabhichaari. These may include: disappointment, lamentation, humility, guilt, fatigue, intoxication, pride, doubt, apprehension, intense emotions, madness, forgetfulness, disease, confusion, death, laziness, inertness, bashfulness, concealment, remembering, argumentativeness, anxiety, thoughtfulness, endurance, happiness, eagerness, haughtiness, envy, impudence, dizziness and alertness. Indeed, attachment takes on an unending variety of subtle shades. Rasa Theory is profound in perceiving the myriad nuances of Love. It provides us a glorious framework to strive for all that is noble, elevating and enlightening in human relationships. Here we have a credible aesthetic ideal for human emotions and actions. The inquisitive reader is encouraged to refer to authorities on Classic Rasa Theory such as: Bharat Muni’s “Natya Shastra” Rupa Goswami’s “Ujjvalanilamani” 148 148 About Translating Gita Govinda Gita Govinda is great literature. It is much more. It is a collection of songs that are composed according to certain rules of meters. These are to be sung in specified ragas. They are also compositions for classical dance recitals. The Sanskrit language lends itself to choice of words that can create an interplay between sounds and meaning. Every language has unique cultural references and conventions built into it. Sanskrit has long tradition of associated cultures that evolved from the ancient vedic right up to the late medieval. A translation has a certain readership in mind that belongs to a certain cultural milieu. This readership by all means has different expectations out of literature. Yet this readership may be open to variety and innovation that can arise out of alien modes of expression. It would therefore be unfair and unproductive to put the translation entirely into the strait-jacket of contemporary conventions. A translator of Sanskrit compositions that are simultaneously about love and spirituality into contemporary English prose of a comparably youthful, emotional, vibrant, spontaneous and sensitive generation has indeed a daunting task ahead. The translator must be equally adept in the cultural milieu and idiom of expression of the two civilizations he is attempting to connect. Yet love and spirituality are universal and timeless. They are perceived, comprehended and practiced in remarkably identical ways going beyond the temporal and cultural. Bringing out this congruence across the language-divide is the challenge as well as joy of the translator´s endeavor. 149 149 The juxtaposition of Mumbiram´s charcoal masterpieces as well as oil and watercolor paintings next to the verses adds an entirely new dimension to these translations. All these works were independently made in entirely contemporary settings but were inspired by the same ideals of rasa aesthetics that these Sanskrit classics embody. Living in his studio in downtown Pune or cohabiting with the tribals and gypsies on the hills of coastal wilderness the artist was making paintings that showed these swarthy contemporaries of ours in the context of these Krishna classics. Here is an artist who is determined to bring the scriptural visions into today´s daylight. Here you see the folk-people of India who were never before seen in the sublime context of high- spirituality and neo-modern aphrodisia. For this reason alone even Indians find these presentations a thrilling and eye-opening experience. Add to it the great delight at hearing the forgotten tales of antiquity retold with great attention to detail and in an idiom that is honed on the best that American universities can produce. All four classics translated in this ensemble are descriptions of the conjugal sporting of the adolescent Krishna entering into Manhood. Yet they span a long period of time in their dates of creation. Besides, they are each of a different literary genre. Vyasa´s Five Songs of Rasa are verses in the epic category. Jayadeva´s Conjugal Fountainhead is very nearly an opera. Vishvanath Chakravarti´s Jewel-Box of True Love is really just an episode with an ingenious plot howsoever profound. In contrast Vrindavan Diaries is fast moving incessant colloquial prose in the guileless tongue of village-damsels who wouldn´t dream of ever leaving their fair Vrindavan. 150 150 These translations have more then lived up to the challenge of conjuring up appropriate linguistic aura for these different classics. This joyous versatility of words nearly matches Mumbiram´s artistic versatility that effortlessly embraces different cultures, different races and different creeds and castes. Some one has complained that attempting to translate a wondrous Sanskrit classic such as Gita Govinda is to live in the shadow of certain defeat. A translation, like a woman, can either be faithful or beautiful. It just may be that these presentations of High Five of Love have given a lie to those words of popular prudence. Take the word leela. It refers to activities that one performs entirely out of one´s own sweet will rather than out of a sense of duty or helplessness. It implies total ease and a sense of wonder. There exists no word in the English language that renders the same meaning. Translators have used “sporting activities” which is quite inadequate. We can clearly foresee “leela” entering popular English usage just as “avatar” already has. There are certain subtle states of consciousness that are acknowledged by the popular culture associated with a language. These have a word in that language. Mere mention of that word conjures up a gamut of associated emotions. Other languages that don´t have such a word will struggle to achieve that same expression. The French word déjà vu is an example. English language has already adopted it. Everyone that knows Sanskrit or one of its derivative Indian languages is familiar with the ecstatic symptom “romaancha”. The English equivalents “hair standing on end” or “goose-bumps” are too clinical. “Hair-raising” is simply horrible. Sanskrit “rasa” is another example. Thus far English has had to make do with “transcendental mellows” which leaves it quite vague for all those who are unfamiliar with Sanskrit. 151 151 These translations of Sanskrit classics are a “juicy” introduction, for the entire English reading fraternity, to all that the word “rasa” conjures up. There are other innumerable such words and such emotions. Browsing through the glossary to these High Five of Love is a “mind expanding” experience. Reading Mumbiram´s original path-breaking “Deluges of Ecstasy” is even more so. The present ensemble is sure to hasten the unequivocal inclusion of many such words in popular English usage thereby enriching emotional expression in the English language. This is just a corollary of the larger ambition of this ensemble of introducing an entirely new framework for aesthetic criticism of works of art and literature: Rasa Theory. 152 152 153 153 100 Glossary (aa, ii and uu are used to denote respective long vowels only when a Sanskrit noun is introduced for the first time. Thus Bhaava, Giridhaarii and Puutanaa are subsequently written as Bhava, Giridhari and Putana. ) A Acyuta yoga siddhi Art of Communion with Krishna the Infallible. The mystic power of uniting with Krishna at will. See ‘Mystic Powers’. Aishvarya The vision of Krishna in his opulence as in Mathura or Dvaraka; contrasted with his Maadhurya vision of a beautiful dusty cowherd boy. Alaktaka Also known as Mahaavar or Yaavak. It is of pink to red colour and is applied to the soles and edges of the feet as decoration. Amrita Nectar. The ambrosial drippings from flowers. The delicious drink of the demigods that bestows immortality. The demons and the demigods once got together to churn the causal ocean just to get Amrit. When it finally appeared they began to fight over it. Krishna once again appeared as the voluptuous beauty Mohini. Mohini deluded the demons and deprived them of the Amrita. While the demigods were receiving the Amrita from Mohini the Planet Raahu and the Moon had a dispute. Raahu was a demon, but was deceitfully joining the demigods to receive amrita from Mohini. The Moon exposed Raahu. Raahu retaliated by attempting to swallow the Moon even as the Moon was drinking the amrita. Raahu could not swallow the Moon‘s head which had already become immortal. (This is what happens at the lunar eclipse according to mythology.) The face of Radha incessantly shedding tears is compared to the Moon dripping amrita as Raahu sinks his teeth into the Moon. Ananta Vishnu is reclining on the coils of this infinite–hooded serpent Ananta on the causal ocean. Ananta is glorifying a new Leela of Krishna with each of his infinite mouths without ever repeating himself. Ananta is an eternal associate of Vishnu. When the Supreme Personality descends as Krishna, Ananta also descends as his elder brother Balaram. When the Supreme descends as Rama, Ananta descends as his younger brother Laxmana. Angaara A tree whose wood burns into the brightest red cinders. Anubhaava The bodily symptoms that are manifested in one who is in love. Arishta, Baka, Agha ...and that Devious Demoness Puutanaa When Krishna was growing up in Gokula and Vrindavan, Kamsa the king of Mathura sent many of his trusted lieutenants in different disguises to kill the Boy Krishna. Arishta came in the form of a ferocious bull. Baka was in the form of a huge stork. Agha was in the form of a gigantic python whose gaping mouth appeared to the cowherd boys like an entrance to a museum. They just walked into it in great amazement. Krishna could only watch with surprise. Krishna followed the boys into the stomach of the Python and expanded himself till the Python burst to pieces. Putana appeared as an exquisitely beautiful well-endowed woman who walked straight into the backyard of Chief Nanda´s palace where Baby Krishna was crawling. With great show of affection Putana offered her poison-tipped breast for Krishna to suck on. Krishna smilingly sucked on her breast till the very life-air of Putana left her. In their great frustration, after loosing Krishna in the middle of the Mahaaraasa Dance, the Gopis accused Krishna of being a habitual killer of women, citing his killing of Putana as an example. In truth the killing of demons was performed by Krishna in his Narayana Manifestation (the four-armed manifestation). Arjuna Cousin and Best Friend of Krishna in Dvaraka. The Bhagavad Gita is a dialog between Krishna and Arjuna on the battlefield of Kurukshetra. Name of a tree. 155 Arrows of Kamadeva Kamadeva, the God of Love, has five arrows with which he attacks his victims. These are the five flowers: lotus, ashoka, mango- blossoms, mallikaa and the blue lotus. Arts of Kamadeva. Various loving ways of sexual union. ‘Art of Communion With Achyuta’ (acyuta yoga siddhi) Literally, ´the mystic power of uniting at will with Krishna the Infallible´. See ‘Mystic Powers’. Arya Civilization A civilization based on Varna and Ashrama classification of society. Every child is handed over to the guru at the age of five. The guru expertly perceives the natural inclinations and aptitudes of the disciple. Then the guru guides the individual in choosing the right occupational category (varna): Intellectuals (brahmans), administrators and rulers (ksatriya), farming, industry, trade enterprises (vaishya), employment (shudra). An individual passes through four stages in life (ashrams): celibate student (brahmachary), householder (grihastha), retirement (vaanaprastha), renunciation (sanyas). Arya is a civilization, not a race. It appreciates the superiority of the soul over the body and over bodily differences. Ashoka Tree Flower of the Ashoka Tree is one of the arrows of Kamadeva. Krishna has made a bed of tender Ashoka leaves for his conjugal sporting with Radha. (Gita Govinda) It is believed that the Ashoka Tree must be kicked and spat upon by a truly beautiful woman before it will blossom. Ashram 1. The guru’s abode in the forest. 2. One of four stages in an individuals life recognized in the arya civilization. See Arya Civilization ashta saattvika bhaavaah See Eightfold Symptoms of Ecstasy. B Bali Bali Maharaj was born a scion of the atheistic demon dynasty. On the advice of his atheistic guru Shukra Acharya he completed 100 great ritualistic sacrifices in order to obtain complete supremacy over the universe as the ruler of the heavenly planets. After all the learned guests at the 100th sacrificial festival had departed, Krishna appeared at the sacrificial arena as a newly-initiated Brahmana Boy, Vaamana. Vamana innocently asked for and was granted a charity of three paces of land. Guru Shukra Acharya´s atheistic teachings were decisively defeated when Bali ignored Shukra Acharya´s advise and surrendered to the Boy Vamana recognizing Him as the Supreme Personality. After Vamana occupied the material and the spiritual universes with the first two paces Bali invited Vamana to step on top of his head for his third pace. Bali´s heroic act of supreme surrender is remembered ever since on every Diwali New Year´s Day. Bali was granted dominion of the paataala nether-domains. Krishna provides security at his palace-gates there in tribute. Bhagavad Gita The dialog between Krishna and his best friend Arjuna on the battlefield of Kurukshetra, where all the kings of the planet were arrayed on either of the two opposing sides. Bhagavad Gita espouses a transcendental ethic based on God-consciousness. Arjuna was overwhelmed by mundane material ethic based on bodily relationships. Krishna revealed the superior transcendental ethic based on a personal relationship with the Supreme Personality. Bhaagavata The revered scripture Shrimad Bhagavatam. Shri Vyasadeva did not find spiritual fulfillment even after composing the epic Mahaabhaarata. He was advised by his guru, the sage Naarada, to write about Krishna the real hero of the Mahabharata. Shri Vyasadeva composed Shrimad Bhagavatam specifically to describe the glories of Krishna in all his energies, activities and incarnations. Bhaagavata A person living by the principles and ethic described in the Bhagavad Gita and Shrimad Bhagavatam is called a Bhaagavata. Bhaagavatas believe in the spiritual equality of all living entities as sparks of the Supreme. Bhaagavatas keep away from meat eating, alcohol, prostitution and gambling. 156 Bhaava The first stage of ecstatic appreciation that becomes the cause of future exchanges of loving affairs with Krishna. Bhaavini ´Subtle Sophisticated Charmer´, Radha addresses Krishna dressed as a demigoddess as Bhaavini. Brahmaa The first created living entity of any material universe. Brahma is born in the lotus coming out of the navel of Vishnu reclining on the coils of the serpent Ananta. The Supreme Personality inspires all knowledge, material and spiritual, into the heart of Brahma. Brahma then proceeds to create the elements and species of that material universe. There are innumerable material universes and each has its own Brahma. Our Brahma has four heads, other might have sixteen, etc. Bhramara Bumblebee. C Chakora Bird A bird that thirsts after and drinks Moonbeams. Chintaamani A spiritual gem. Every thought related to the Supreme is a spiritual gem. A Krishna Lover‘s mind is like a whole city where every stone is a spiritual gem. Confidential Leelas The most intimate happenings between Krishna and the gopis in the bowers of Vrindavan. Also see Leela. Consummate Resolution of all Philosophical Dispute “Krishna’s clever, witty, hilarious speech sowed the seed on which the nectarean subdued laughter of the Sakhis was sprinkled. A sprout came out of the Parapet of Radha’s Heart as the Logical Conclusion of such Loving Devotion. Loving Affairs can be said to be the branches of the Tree of Loving Devotion that instantly grows up. The juicy ripe fruit of that tree is the Consummate Resolution of all Philosophical Dispute.” (Jewel-Box) Cuckoo Bird In the Vasanta season the cuckoos move about in the forests in groups, responding to each others’ calls in a rising crescendo of notes. They raise quite a racket that resounds the forest and rouses amorous passions in the hearts of the youthful romantic lovers. In the meanwhile on a more practical level, the male cuckoos are distracting the crows so the female cuckoos can sneak into the crows’ nests and lay their eggs. The eggs are hatched by the crows and the cuckoo babies are brought up by the crows. Come Vasanta season, the mango-blossoms inspire the cuckoo youngster to call out in its characteristic cuckoo crescendo. Cuckoos are the artist-musicians of the avian world. Cup of Good Karma Whatever appears as sheer good luck is really your past good karma coming to fruition in an inconceivable way. See Karma. D Dahi Milk curds, yogurt. Daasya Attachment to Krishna in servitude. One of the rasas. Deer-musk The musk-deer oozes a resinous substance through the navel. Its aroma pervades the forest ambience. Delusions in Ecstasy (prema vivarta) In the mood of intense separation Radharani used to mistake a Tamaala Tree for her dark beloved Krishna and embrace it. Such an ecstatic delusion is called prema vivarta. Demigods (deva, sura) Inhabitants of the heavenly planets (svarga). One can be elevated to the planets of the demigods by performing sacrificial offerings (yagya), penances (tapa) or charity (daana). Such stay is however temporary. On depleting one’s karmic account one returns to the earthly planets. A devotee, however, does not aspire for the heavenly planets. Contrast with demons (asura) who are atheists. 157 Devi Demigoddess. Dheerasameer A spot along the Yamuna river in Vrindavan, where the wind blows steadily. Here Krishna would play upon his flute the secret notes of invitation to arrange secret meetings with the gopis. Dhoti A long cloth worn by men around the loins. Dipaawali Festival of Lamps celebrated in autumn season. Doe-Eyed One (mriganayanaa) The guileless damsels of Vraja are often so described. Dvaadas Aditya Mandir Temple of the twelve manifestations of the Sun God. E Eightfold symptoms of ecstasy (ashta saattvika bhaavaah) ‘Suffering in every eightfold manner’’, (Jewel- Box). There are eight different bodily symptoms that are manifest at the height of spiritual ecstasy. These are: hair standing on end, trembling, tears, change in voice, being stunned, sweating, being deluded, losing consciousness. When Krishna abandoned Radha at the height of the Mahaaraasa dance Radha experienced the highest ecstasies of ‘Love in Separation’ (vipralambha). Krishna as the demigoddess is calling Radha’s eightfold ecstatic symptoms her eightfold suffering. Exalted Throne of Self Realization (svabhaava-simhaasan) See svaruupa Eyes without Collyrium (niranjana) Radha looked like a yogini when she invoked the Sun-God to bear witness to the absolute unity of Gaandharvikaa and Giridhaari. Her eyes were without Collyrium. She had also attained the Niranjana state of yogic perfection where your vision is without blemish. F Fever of Kamadeva (atanu mahaajvara) The state of being agitated with passion to a fever pitch. The demigoddesses of the heavenly planets were agitated to a fever pitch upon hearing the sound of Krishna’s flute. (Jewel-Box) Fifth Note The cuckoo birds call out in the fifth note of the musical scale when mango trees are in blossom in the Vasanta season. Lovers also call out in the fifth note at the height of conjugal ecstasies. Flute Krishna has a whole collection of flutes mostly made from certain varieties of bamboo, called Vamsha. The gopis felt jealous of the flute that tasted the nectar from Krishna’s beautiful lips. The trees including the Vamsha bamboos would shed tears of joy, as elders of the civilized Arya society would, because one born amongst them obtained such intimacy with the Supreme. The lakes along which the bamboo would grow would break out with goose- bumps on their surfaces in the form of the lotuses that would bloom upon them. Once Krishna´s flute fell in the hands of Radha and her sakhis who chastised the flute for being an usurper of the nectar from Krishna’s lips. The flute then spoke back and described all the austerities and sufferings it went through at the hands of Krishna before getting to be in its covetous position. Four Armed Narayana Incarnation Krishna maintains the material universes in his four armed Narayana (Vishnu) form. The gopis associate with Krishna in his beautiful two-armed form that plays the flute and sports causelessly in Vraja-Vrindavan. Fruits of the Taala Palm The Taala Palm bears fruit that has a luscious succulent core. It is soft yet firm. The sakhi compares Radha’s breasts to the fruit of the Palm Tree. 158 Full-hipped Gopis The full-hipped gopis have full thighs that lead to a beautiful cave that is fit for King Indra’s baby elephant. G Gandharvikaa Gandharvas are the artists-musicians of the heavenly planets. Radha liked to refer to herself as Gandharvika and to Krishna as Giridhari. Garland of Beautiful Forest Flowers (vana-maalaa) Krishna and his cowherd boyfriends went to the forests with the calves and the cows every day. There they sported all day long. The boys loved to dress Krishna up and decorate him with whatever was available in the forests along the bank of the Yamuna. They would smear each other with clays of various colors. They would put peacock feathers and flowers in Krishna’s beautiful curly locks. Sometimes they would improvise a wonderful headgear out of the ropes and lassos they carried to herd in the cows. They would make handsome gunja-mala garlands out of red little gunja seeds that the gunja bushes would yield in abundance. Krishna was especially fond of the ‘vana-mala’ made out of forest flowers, leaves, seeds, feathers and whatever else they could string in an attractive way. Giridhaarii Krishna who lifted the Govardhan Mountain to protect the inhabitants of Vrindavan from torrential rains. Goloka The eternal abode of Krishna. Here Krishna sports out of his own sweet will with his eternal associates. That includes the lovely doe- eyed cowherd damsels, the playful cowherd boys, the cows, the calves, the peacocks, the trees, the rivers, the lotuses, even the clouds. Everything is sentient in Goloka. Everyone is attached to Krishna in a unique loving way. Time does not bring anything to an end, it makes everything only continue. There is no envy, nor any fear. Every word is a song and every step is a dance. Goosebumps (romaancha) The ecstatic symptom of bodily hair standing on end. Ghoonghat End of the sari carried overhead in modesty. Gopis The doe-eyed damsels of cowherd families are considered to be Krishna’s eternal associates from Goloka. They are considered to be Vedic hymns personified. Greatly realized sages from the Ramayana wanted to intimately unite with the Supreme. They had their desires fulfilled when they appeared as the gopis. The gopis made supreme sacrifices for the sake of their love for Krishna. Not only did they abandon homes, relatives and friends but also the traditions and injunctions of the civilized Arya Society, which is most difficult to do. Great devotees like Uddhava bow low to the lotus-feet of the gopis and wish to take birth even as a blade of grass in Vrindavan so they may get covered by the dust from the land treaded upon by the gopis. Govardhan Mountain The mountain in Vraja that is considered to be very close to Krishna’s heart. The boys would take the cows to graze on the Govardhan mountain. The mountain would offer the boys fresh waters, fresh fruit, as well as wonderful shelters to rest and sport. The inhabitants of Vraja once brought upon themselves the wrath of Indra, the King of demigods, when they decided to worship Govardhan Mountain instead of Indra. Indra sent torrential rains that threatened to inundate the villages of Vraja in flash-floods. Krishna casually lifted the mountain and held it overhead like an umbrella. All the cowherd families and cows were safely huddling around Krishna for full seven days that they would never forget. Great Artist Krishna can separate lust from love. He is a great artist. Great Lecher Krishna disguised as the demigoddess is calling Krishna a ‘fellow obsessed with company of women’ (Jewel-Box). Great Suffering of Separation (viraha) For those in Love viraha brings out the most intimate estatic moments of the Love-Affair.. Gunja-mala A garland of red gunja seeds. Guru A preceptor who simply passes on spiritual knowledge to the disciples exactly as it came down to him. 159 H Haimavati The consort of the Himalaya Mountain. Halad Yellow turmeric. Hanumaan The wise monkey of Ramayana is considered to be the paragon of devotion and surrender to the Supreme. Hanuman flies on the flag on Arjuna‘s chariot where the Bhagavad Gita was spoken. Hari Literally ‘one who steals’. Krishna steals the minds of great devotees as also the fresh butter of the gopis of Vrindavan. Hari is a generic name of the Supreme. It is used to refer to the other incarnations of Krishna (such as Rama) as well. Haveli Mansion or palace. Himalayas ‘The great reservoir of snow’. The famous mountain. Holy Place of Pilgrimage of Kamadeva The place where Krishna practiced the Arts of Love with his beloved Radha. Horde of wild elephants in rut Amorous desires of beautiful doe-eyed women are absolutely inexplicable and uncontrollable, like a horde of wild elephants in rut. (Gita Govinda) I Impersonalism Theories that deny human attributes to divinity. A Theory that only perceives the energies of God, not the Personality of God. A form of materialism, that denies supremacy of spirit over matter. Those who are dazzled by the effulgence of the Supreme Personality, but are not sensitive to his personality are Impersonalists. J Jasmin The fragrant and delicate navamallika flower is one of the five arrows of Kamadeva. Jiva The living entity, eternally a fraction of the Supreme. K Kadamba Tree Anthocephalus Kadamba blooms into beautiful ball-like flowers that have a delightful aroma. Kadamba tree figures importantly in Krishna’s activities in Vrindavan. Krishna climbed a Kadamba tree after stealing the clothes of the unmarried gopis. Krishna climbed a Kadamba tree to jump into the lagoon in which the poisonous snake Kaaliya had made his home. The Kadambkhandi forest was a favorite place for the gopis to go picking flowers. Kailash Mountain The abode of Lord Shiva in the Northern Himalayas. Kaajal Eye-unguent made from the soot caught over a ghee lamp. It may contain other ingredients such as camphor. It may smart and make the eyes water when first applied but then it clears the vision and also makes the eyes look more attractive. Also Collyrium. Kaalindi Another name of the Yamuna river. Kalasha Water pitcher made of metal or clay. Kalashas are auspicious symbols in ritualistic paraphernalia. 160 Kalashas of Kamadeva The full breasts of the gopis are often compared to the Kalashas of Kamadeva. Kaliyuga Our material universe goes through a circle of four time periods (Yugas); Satyayuga, Tretaayuga, Dvaaparayuga and Kaliyuga. At the end of every cycle there is a partial dissolution and a new beginning. The whole circle is 4.32 million solar years. The Kaliyuga is only the last tenth fraction of it. The human civilization gradually deteriorates through the cycle. The Kaliyuga is characterized by a civilization that is full of conflict and hypocrisy. The influence of Kali is most prevalent in places where there is gambling, prostitution, alcohol and avoidable slaughter of animals. Yet there is hope for living entities of the Kaliyuga. The path of liberation from material existence has become gloriously easy. Meditating upon the Vrindavan Leelas of Krishna and his associates through body, mind and words is revealed to be the relishable road to realization as well as liberation. Kaamadeva The God of Love has five arrows of enamorment with which he attacks his victims. His flag has a shark emblem on it. Once Kamadeva attacked Lord Shiva with his weapons of seduction. Lord Shiva´s deep meditation was disturbed. Therefore Lord Shiva was furious at Kamadeva. Shiva opened his third eye and burnt Kamadeva to ashes. Kamadeva remained without any body till he could take birth as Krishna´s son from Rukmini, Pradyumna. Kamadeva is also called ´The One Without a Body´ (Ananga). Kamadeva’s beloved consort is the beautiful Rati Devi. Rati remained faithful to the memory of Kamadeva even after his body was burned to ashes. Baby Pradyumna was kidnapped by the demons and thrown into the ocean where a big fish swallowed him. As luck would have it, that very fish was caught by a fisherman who brought it to the kitchen in the demon´s palace where a forlorn Rati was working as a maid in disguise. When the fish was cut open Rati instantly was attracted to the infant. Rati brought up the orphan baby to manhood. Rati and Kamadeva recognized each other as eternal lovers. Krishna rescued Pradyumna and Rati and arranged a wonderful wedding for them in Dvaraka. Amour, Cupid, God of Love, Kamadeva has been used synonymously. Kambal Black woolen handloom blanket Karma The ethical essence of one´s thoughts and actions. Good karma leads to spiritual elevation, bad karma leads to degradation. This is the basic Law of Karma. To a God-conscious person it is the supreme assurance of a built-in automatic Universal Justice System that is fully operative in all of God´s Creation. Whatever appears as sheer good luck is really your past good karma coming to fruition in an inconceivable way. Similarly, what appears as bad luck is only some past bad Karma coming to fruition in an inconceivable way. The Law of Karma allows one to take total ultimate responsibility of one´s present condition, without guilt about a largely unknowable past and without hopelessness about an entirely open-ended future. The Law of Karma is accepted or rejected as a matter of Faith in as much as we accept or reject existence of God as a matter of Faith. The Law of Karma works in inconceivable unfathomable precision and certitude. It is futile to guess which past activity is the cause of which present condition. Kaatyaayani A name of the Universal Mother. A form of Durga, Lord Shiva’s consort. The unmarried gopis of Vrindavan did a month-long fast in the month of Maargashiirsha (Orion) to ask Katyayani Devi for the blessing that they may get Krishna as husband. Keshava A name of Krishna, the one with beautiful curly locks of hair. Ketaki Plant A bush-like plant that bears cob-like flowers. The petals have sharp points on the edges. The ripe flower has a pleasing golden color and a haunting aroma. Khanjana Birds Love-birds that make a tumultuous love-dance during copulation. Kimshuka Tree A tree with bright red flowers that conspicuously point towards the sky. Krishna Krishna means the ‘attractor‘ and also the ‘dark one‘. The central character of these works as of this universe. Kunda Flowers A bush-like plant with delicate small white flowers. Beautiful rows of teeth are compared to the Kunda flowers. Krishna is sometimes called Mukunda, the one with a smile that reminds one of rows of Kunda flowers. Kunja Shady coves in wild bushy overgrowth. The young boys and girls of Vrindavan frequented the various Kunjas to have intimate meetings. 161 Kunjaadhiraaja Prince of the Shady Bowers. Kumkum Red powder or paste used to decorate the forehead. L Lakuti stick The light stick used by cowherd boys when they go tending cows. Lalitaa and Vishaakhaa The dearest girlfriends of Radha. Langoti A brief loin-cloth. Laxmi the Daughter of theOcean See Vishnu. Leela Activities not performed out of any obligation or sense of duty, but purely inspired by once own sweet will. Only Krishna and his associates are able to act thus independently. Embodied living entities are limited by the stringent laws of material nature. Lehenga Pants that are tied with draw-strings and are gathered at the ankle. Life-air (Praana) Life-Air of the Universe Kamadeva, the God of Love, is addressed as Life-Air of the Universe, jagatpraana. Little Box that contains the Jewel of the Highest Secrets of True Love ‘Prema-samputa’ is the title of Vishvanath Chakravarti’s classic composition. Lord Ramachandra See Ramayana. Lotus with a Broken Stem The beautiful Radha incessantly shedding tears appeared like a lotus with a broken stem. Love “Those who think they know ‘Love is like this, or this is Love and that is not Love’ don’t know a thing about it ....even though they may be great scholars of the Vedas and other great books of knowledge.” “Those who thus preach to the eager, what they preach and that they preach is all indeed a Great Pain. For Love is truly Beyond all that. It disappears on Analysis yet it vanishes without Analysis also.” (Jewel-Box) Lust Love that fails to consider the feelings of the beloved in a love-affair. Lust for Krishna (lobha) is considered to be the first state experienced on the path of spontaneous attachment to Krishna (Raagaanugaa Bhakti). M Maadhava A name of Krishna. The Consort (dhava) of the Goddess of Fortune (maa). Maadhavikaa A fragrant flower. Maadhurya The rasa of attachment to Krishna in the mood of conjugal love. In this sense it is also called Ujjvala or Shringaara Rasa. The mood of those who are attracted to the Vrindavan activities of Krishna as contrasted to his Dvaraka opulence (aishvarya). Maalatii A fragrant white flower. Maana Sulking mood. Maayaavaada The theory that the world we experience is only an illusion or a dream. In the 7th century Shri Shankara Acharya wrote a commentary on the Bhagavad Gita that conjures up a maayaavaadi interpretation of Krishna´s words. 162 On the one hand Shankara´s commentary preached virtual atheism that attracted the disenchanted Buddhists towards the Bhagavad Gita. On the other hand Shankara´s personal charisma and his magical rhetorical prowess made Buddhism just wither away from India. Shankara´s commentary presents the Bhagavad Gita as words of the Supreme Personality denying its own Supreme Personality. Shankara´s hypnotic logic conceals its own paradox with such élan and authority that a vast majority in India accepts even today Shankara as the ultimate authority on the Bhagavad Gita. The paradox of Shankara´s commentary was exposed nearly a thousand years later by Shri Krishna Chaitanya in his talks to Sarvabhauma Bhattacharya and Prabodhanand Saraswati who were the greatest scholars and exponents of Shankara´s philosophy in their times. Madhuuka Flower A flower of glistening petals of light orange color. Madiraakshi One with Intoxicating Eyes. Magnanimous Those who awaken your Love for Krishna are considered to be the most magnanimous persons on the planet. Mahaabhaava The highest ecstatic state in the mood of separation, such as the gopis experienced when Krishna disappeared from the scene of the Maharaasa dance. All different eight ecstatic bodily symptoms (see ashta saattvika bhaavaah) are manifested in the Mahaabhaava state. Mahaabhaarata The great epic composed by Shri Vyasadeva nearly 5000 years ago. It is the history of the planet up to the beginning of the Kaliyuga. The Bhagavad Gita appears as a dialogue in one episode of this epic. Mahaaraasa The great dance innovation that Krishna manifested on that first full-moon night of the autumn season. Krishna danced simultaneously with all the damsels of Vrindavan till every one of them was thinking He was dancing exclusively with her alone. At that point Krishna all of a sudden disappeared from amongst them. In their intense feelings of separation the gopis experienced the most elevated state of love of God called Mahaabhaava. Mahaavar Red organic colour applied to the soles of feet as decoration Makara Shark. Kamadeva‘s flag has a shark emblem on it. Krishna wears earrings in the shape of sharks. Make me happy or make me broken hearted The state of total surrender to the Supreme, the mood that the gopis of Vrindavan manifested. The mood of Shri Krishna Chaitanya who enlivened every town and village with his movement of congregational chanting and dancing. Maalaa A garland. Malaya Mountain A mountain in the south-east that is overgrown with sandalwood trees. All of the Indian subcontinent is cooled by the fragrant winds from the Malaya Mountain. In the heat of intense separation the cool breezes from the Malaya Mountain appear unbearably scorching to Radha. She speculates it is because the wind had passed through the bellies of poisonous snakes that wrap themselves around the sandalwood trees to keep themselves cool. The tribal Bhil women that inhabit the Malaya Mountain are known to treat those precious sandalwood trees quite casually. They use it as firewood for cooking ! Manifesto of Love The scratches, nail-marks and bites that lovers leave on each-others’ bodies appear like sacrosanct Manifestos of the God of Love. Mantra A composition of words and sounds that ‘purifies the mind’. Certain mantras have specific spiritual potencies or material prowess. A guru passes on the mantra to the disciple. The Gayatri mantra, for example, manifests the very essence of all vedic spiritual knowledge. There are also mantras that invoke various missiles and weapons for a warrior on the battlefield. Manu One of the progenitors of the human race. Manu composed the ´Manu Smriti´, the Book of Laws for mankind. Manu Smriti divides the human race based on birth and is considered to be the basis of the caste-system in India. Krishna Devotees, Vaishnavas, Bhagavatas ignore the Manu Smriti as also any discriminatory distinctions based on birth. Many-Branched Tree of Kamedeva The scratches, nail-marks and bites that lovers leave on each-others’ bodies appear like the many-branched tree of the God of Love. 163 Marakata Gem A precious bluish-green emerald that has the same luster as Krishna’s body. Maataa Mother. Materialism The theory that living entities are no more then complex configurations of atoms and molecules. Matkaa Fired clay-pitcher. Meru Mountain The great mountain at the centre of the material universe. Mohini Incarnation A demon named Vritra once obtained a boon from Lord Shiva that on whosesoever’s head he would place his hand would be burned to ashes. The demon chased Shiva himself to turn him to ashes. Shiva ran to take shelter of Krishna. Krishna then took the form of an exquisite exotic beauty called Mohini and appeared before the demon. Mohini seduced Vritra with her feminine charms and made him dance to her tune. Vritra followed her and imitated every one of her dance gestures. When Mohini placed her hand over her own head Vritra also placed his hand over his own head. He thus burnt himself to ashes (Also see Amrita). Mriganayanaa Doe-Eyed-One. The guileless damsels of Vraja are often so described. Mukunda Bestower of liberation, one with smile as beautiful as kunda flowers. A name of Krishna. Murali One of Krishna’s many flutes. Muralidhara One who carries the Murali, a name of Krishna. Mutual Hypnosis (vyatimohanam) Mystic Powers (siddhis) Supernatural powers that can be obtained by performing self-abnegating penances and austerities. Atheists strive to obtain such powers to lord it over the material world. Atheists delude themselves into believing that obtaining siddhis is the goal of so-called spiritual pursuits. Lovers of the Supreme, bhaktas, find the pursuit or possession of such mystic powers to be a distraction if not an outright hindrance in their unalloyed unconditional attachment to the Supreme. On the other hand, bhaktas seem to have acquired many amazing mystic powers even without striving for them. In Vishvanath Chakravarti´s ‘Jewel-Box’ Krishna in the guise of the beautiful demigoddess asks Radha whether she has obtained the yogic perfection (yogic siddhi) of ‘communion with Acyuta‘, the mystic power of entering other people’s minds. As the eternal Beloved of Krishna, Radha is indeed in constant communion with Krishna, the infallible Achyuta. As a true lover she indeed knows the mind of her beloved as she would know her own. Later Krishna speculates that some demigoddess comes to meet Radha from whom Radha has learned the mystic power of drawing any person helplessly to herself. Krishna would like to meet the demigoddess just to learn that mystic power from her. Indeed Radha has brought Krishna out of his disguise by simply meditating upon him. The sakhis suggest that Radha herself should take Krishna to some secluded place and teach him that mystic power. In a secluded place with Krishna alone, Radha will certainly be in perfect communion with the infallible Krishna. (Jewel-Box) N Nandanandana Nandakumaar, Vrajeshnandana, Vrajaraajkumaar are all names of Krishna, son of Nanda. Nectar (amrita) See Amrita. ‘Nectarean Ways of Love in our Beloved Land of Vrindavan, our Vraja’ (vraja anuraaga caryaa), ( vraja anuraaga riiti ) Eternal ideal ways of ecstatic loving affairs between living entities that are full of rasa. In Vrindavan Krishna is fulfilling everyone’s secret desires according to each individual’s svarupa. Even a blade of grass in Vraja is experiencing ecstatic fulfillment. Even a humble Gunja seed from Vraja is more dear to Krishna than all the treasures of the world. Relationships in Vraja Vrindavan are causeless, spontaneous and constitutional. They are free from mundane envy. To discover your own very unique and individual relational identity in Vraja is the essence of self-realization. 164 Nikunja Bowers where Radha and Krishna sported confidentially. Niilaambara Blue garment. An epithet of Krishna´s brother Balaram who usually wore a blue silk dhoti. P Paan Spices and catechu folded in a betel leaf. It is offered in friendship and hospitality. It colors the tongue and lips red when chewed. It has soothing, relaxing and digestive qualities. Panchama The passionate fifth note of the musical scale. Pacharangi mala A garland of beads of five colours. Paramaatmaa Supersoul. God as simultaneous and eternal individual companion of every living entity. Parvati the Daughter of the Himalaya The consort of Lord Shiva appears as the daughter of the Himalaya Mountain in one of her several births. Past good Karma See Karma. Perceiving Love “When the mind is free from both of these, when it is in the state of pure guileless unmitigated attachment, it is situated on the Exalted Throne of Self Realization. Only the Happiness experienced by the Beloved’s Happiness in Transactions of Love can be equal to the task of Perceiving Love.” (Jewel-Box) ‘Perfect Communion with Achyuta’ See acyuta-yoga-siddhi. Perfect Repose (vishrambhavaan) Piitaambara Yellow garments. An epithet of Krishna. Krishna preferred to wear a yellow silk dhoti that wonderfully contrasted with his bluish complexion reminding one of lightening on the background of dark clouds. Prema Love for Krsna. Premi A True Lover. Prema Vivarta See delusions in ecstasy. Providence (daiva) Pure guileless unmitigated attachment (shuddha raaga) R Radha Eternal consort of Krishna. Raagaanugaa Bhakti The path of spontaneous attachment to Krishna. Raahu See Amrita. Rama See Ramayana. Ramayana The epic story of Krishna´s appearance as Raama, the King of Ayodhyaa, almost a million years ago. Lord Ramachandra is the epitome of the virtues of monogamy. Rama along with Wife Sita and Brother Laxmana were exiled to fourteen years in the forests of Central India. Raavana, the King of Lanka, had the ambition to rule over the entire material universe. Raavana´s Sister Shuurpanakhaa desperately lusts after the handsome young Rama and Laxmana. Rama as well as Laxmana jilt her advances. An insulted and humiliated 165 Shuurpanakhaa incites Brother Raavana against Rama and Sita. Raavana sees the lovely and loving barefoot couple Rama and Sita as the antithesis of his materialistic world-view. With the help of illusionists Raavana abducts Sita and carries her away to Lanka. While searching for Sita, Rama and Laxmana meet Sugriiva, the great Monkey King in exile and his Prime Minister Hanuman. Rama and Sugriiva make a mutual agreement whereby Rama would help Sugriiva regain the Monkey Kingdom of Kishkindhaa by defeating his brother Vaali. In return Sugriiva would send the monkey-armies in all four directions in search of Sita. Hanuman´s thrilling adventures in search of Sita and the eighteen-day-long battle between Rama and Raavana are the most memorable chapters of the epic Ramayana composed by contemporary Sage Valmiki nearly a million years ago. Rama is considered to be the perfect incarnation of the Supreme , whereas Krishna is the most perfect Supreme Himself. Krishna´s appearance as Himself nearly a million years after the Ramayana makes up for many of the lacunae in his straight jacket act as the virtuous Rama. Rasa Until recently, in Bhakti literature ‘Rasa´ was translated as ´transcendental mellow´. Rasa has no exact English equivalent. So now we use Rasa in English. Rasa is the aesthetic appreciation of an emotional experience. Six to nine distinct varieties of rasa are enumerated in theories of aesthetics. In devotional aesthetics neutrality (shaanta), servitude (daasya), parental affection (vaatsalya), friendship (sakhya), conjugal love (maadhurya) are the five different rasas or moods of attachment to the Supreme. Rasa Theory Classical theory of critical appreciation of works of art and literature. Arousal of rasas and their qualitative analysis are the main concerns and criterions in judging a work according to Rasa Theory. Rasaabhaasa Incompatible mixing of rasas. An emotional experience may be enriched if more than one compatible rasas are aroused. Conversely, if an experience exhibits a mixing of incompatible rasas (rasaabhaasa), that is considered to be a case of perverted emotions. Thus, mixing of sakhya and vaatsalya rasas (as in the case of Balaram and other cowherd boyfriends of Krishna that were slightly older than him) is relishable. A mixing of vaatsalya and maadhurya rasas would be rasaabhaasa. It would smack of incest. Raasa Dance See Mahaaraasa. Rasamalai A Bengali cottage-cheese sweet preparation. Rasa Vigraha Analysis of the qualitative aesthetics of an emotional experience. Rati Devi See Kamadeva. Romaancha Hair standing on end as an ectatic symptom. S Saffron-Ooty The gopis would put a paste of saffron and sandalwood on their bosoms. Sakha Boyfriend. Sakhi Girlfriend. Sakhya Attachment to Krishna in friendship. One of the rasas. Sandal-Scented Wind from the Malaya Mountain See Malaya Mountain. Sanyaasin A person in the renounced order of life (ashram). Separation (viraha) Shaanta rasa Attachment to Krishna in neutrality. 166 Shark (makara) Kamadeva‘s flag has sharks on it. Krishna wears earrings in the shape of a shark. Shilajit Certain mountains have rocky hillsides that ooze out a potent resin called shilajit. Shiva Lord Shiva is the original wild one. He has long matted hair. He has ashes smeared all over his body. He hangs out at Burning-Ghats with weird goblins and ghosts. His beauty and pure heart shine through all those oddities. Only Shiva could agree to swallow the deadly poison halaahala, that emerged from the churning of the ocean by the demons and the demigods. Shiva´s neck turned blue on account of that. Shiva´s body is decorated with live snakes. A crescent moon adorns his crown of matted hair. The heavenly Ganga first descends onto Shiva´s dreadlocks and then into the material world. Progenitor Daksha’s darling daughter Satii is madly in Love with Shiva, much to the distress of her father. Shiva presides over Tamas Guna, the Mode of Darkness. Lord Shiva, ‘Bholenaath’, is famously credulous. Even his ill-wishers find it easy to obtain a boon from him. See ‘Mohini Incarnation’. Shridevi Name of Laxmi. Shringaara Rasa (or maadhurya rasa, ujjvala rasa) Another name for the mood of conjugal attachment. Shuurpanakhaa See Ramayana. Sindoor Red oxide powder put in the parting of hair over the forehead especially by married women. Sister of the God of Death Yamuna river. Yama, the God of Death, and Yamuna, the river of Vrindavan are both offspringa of the Sun-God. Sita See Ramayana. Siitkaar Sweet Nothings uttered in Ecstasy. Subhruvaa Bow-Browed Beauty. Svaruupa One´s original identity in Goloka. One comes to know ones Svarupa by the grace of Krishna or Krishna´s devotees. It is the essence of self-realization on the path of devotional attachment. Svastika A symbol of Auspiciousness. T Thakurji Krishna is affectionately called Thakurji or Lord. The family priest Gargamuni Gargamuni was the family priest of the Yaadava Dynasty to which Krishna‘s father Vasudeva belonged. Gargamuni made the astral chart or horoscope for Baby Krishna. Three Worlds The three divisions of the material world. The upper world of the demigods, the middle world of humans and the lower world of the demons (atheists). Tilak A decorative mark on the forehead, made with sandalwood paste or dear musk or saffron or clay from the Yamuna. Total Devastation in Vipralambha (pralaya) One of the eightfold ecstatic symptoms manifested by Radharani at the height of her feelings of separation. Transcendental Ecstasy The blissful experience of Communion with the Supreme. True Lover (premii) 167 Tulasi The holy basil plant, also called Vrinda after a gopi from Goloka. Tulasi plants grow in great abundance in Vrindavan. Krishna is very fond of the Tulasi plant. Any food preparation prepared for Krishna must have a Tulasi leaf placed on top of it. Krishna does not even look at any food-preparation that does not have a Tulasi leaf placed on top of it. U Uddhava A dear friend of Krishna in Mathura. A highly realized soul. He even resembled Krishna in appearance. Krishna sent Uddhava to Vrindavan to console the bereaved inhabitants of Vraja. Unguent See Kaajal. V Vaatsalya The rasa of parental affection. Vaasudeva A name of Krishna, son of Vasudeva. Vaidhi Bhakti Path of devotion to the Supreme as prescribed in ritualistic religious practice. Contrast with raagaanugaa bhakti. Vaikuntha The planet of the Liberated. Those who are attached to the opulent Mathura or Dvaraka Leela of Krishna (aishvarya leela) attain the Vaikuntha planets. Only those who are attracted to his Vraja Vrindavan Leela (maadhurya leela) are elevated to the magical Goloka. The four armed Vishnu expansion of Krishna presides over the Vaikuntha planets. Laxmi is his consort there. Vaishnava A devotee of Vishnu, a devotee of Krishna, a devotee of God in his personal form, a personalist. A person awakened to the spiritual realm. A person who emanates noble human ideals on account of his proper understanding of God and Man as well as Spirit and Matter. Vaali See Ramayana. Vamshi Vata A great banyan tree on the bank of the Yamua. It is Krishna’s favorite place of secret rendezvous with the gopis. Vamshi means the bamboo flute. Vat means a banyan. Krishna would play the secret notes of invitation on his flute to send a message to the gopis. Vanamaalaa Garland of forest flowers. Various texts on the science of conjugal union Such as the Kamasutra of Vatsyayana. Vasanta The spring season when all trees are blossoming, the bumblebees are humming, the cuckoos are singing and love is on everyone’s mind. Vedas Ancient books of spiritual knowledge of the ideal original Arya civilization. The vedas are of suprahuman origin. The Supreme Personality inspires them into the heart of Brahma the first living entity of any material universe. Thereafter the knowledge is passed on in a Guru- disciple-chain of unbroken succession. The vedas describe and glorify the Supreme as manifest in the material universe, yet stop short of describing the causeless sweet sporting (leela) of the Supreme in the eternal Goloka Vrindavan. The gopis of Vraja Vrindavan achieved the state of unconditional love of the Supreme which is beyond the reach of even those well-versed in vedic knowledge. Venu One of Krishna’s many bamboo flutes. Vibhaava Radha, Krishna and their associates are called aalambana vibhaava. All things that are stimuli for ecstatic love of Krishna are called uddiipana vibhaava. 168 Vipralambha Ecstatic love manifests itself in meeting (Sambhog) as well as in separation (vipralambha). Vishaakhaa One of Radhika´s two best girlfriends. Vishnu The expansion of Krishna that looks after maintenance of the material worlds. The presiding deity of the Vaikuntha planets of the liberated. He is the consort of Laxmiji, the Goddess of Fortune. He carries a lotus, a conch-shell, a discus and a mace in his four hands. Vishrambhavaan One in the state of Perfect Repose, Self-confidence and Trust. Vraja The land in a circumference of nearly 168 miles around Vrindavan on the bank of the Yamuna river. Vraja appeared like an exact replica of Goloka Vrindavan when Krishna appeared there nearly 5100 years ago. Every living entity in Vraja is continuously engaged in participating in and proliferating the wonderful Leelas of Krishna and his confidential associates. The causeless loving exchanges between Krishna and his companions in Vraja are the ultimate object of meditation for all living entities of all times, anywhere and everywhere. Vraja anuraaga charyaa ‘Nectarean Ways of Love in our Beloved Land of Vrindavan, our Vraja’. (Also vraja anuraaga riiti). Vrindaa The presiding deity of Vraja Vrindavan. A gopi in Goloka who became jealous of Radha. She was therefore exiled to the material world. Born as the daughter of King Dharmadhvaja she performed penances and austerities (tapa) to get a husband of her choice. She chose an atheist materialist named Shankhachuuda as her husband just to incite Krishna. Shankhachuda became nearly invincible by dint of Vrinda´s chaste devotion to him as his wife. At an opportune time Krishna had to appear in the guise of Shankhachuda and seduce Vrinda. A triumphant Vrinda returned to Goloka leaving behind the holy Tulasi plant as a reminder of her intense love for Krishna. Vrindaavan Vrinda means the Tulasi plant that was very dear to Krishna (holy basil). Van means a forest. Vrindavan has an abundance of fragrant Tulasis. When Krishna was three years old the cowherds of Gokula decided to move up the river some 8 miles to Vrindavan. When Krishna was in Vrindavan it appeared like an exact replica of the eternal Goloka Vrindavan. Vrinda Devi is the presiding deity of the forests of Vrindavan. She is ever assisting Love and Beloved in their loving meetings. Vrishni Dynasty Krishna is variously mentioned as belonging to the yadu, satvata or vrishni dynasties. Vyatimohanam Mutual Hypnosis. W Wind from the Malaya Mountain See Malaya Mountain. Y Yamuna River River Yamuna and Yama, the God of Death, are children of the Sun-God (Surya). Yamuna is a great Lover of Krishna. The sweetest of Krishna´s Vrindavan-Leelas took place on the banks of theYamuna River. Yuga A very long period of time. Yugal Couple of lovers. Z Zeroism (Shuunyavaada) The theory that the essence of existence is emptiness. Adherents of zeroism try to meditate on emptiness. Compare with atheism, impersonalism, maayaavaada. 169 36 Index A Alaktaka 72, 82, 96 amorous expedition 27 amour 24 Arrows of Kamadeva 65, 124 Arts of Kamadeva 48 Ashoka Tree 108 B Bakula Trees 8 Bamboo Nikunja 38 Bank of the Yamuna 5 Battle of Love 70 Beautiful Fortunate One 55 beautiful patch of reeds 15 beautiful vision of a meeting under the Kadamba Tree 22 beautiful women of Vraja 16 Bed of Cupid’s Arrows 39 bed of soft bamboo-shoots 26 bells in my waistband 27 Bimba Fruit 21 Blooming Lotus in a Clear Pond 75 Bower of the Vines 58 bumblebees obsessed with honey 20 C Cacophony of Cuckoos’ Calls 8 Chakora Bird 53 colors of the rainbow. 21 combined glories of the Shiliimukha and Paatal Tree 9 Confidential Leelas 5 cool sandal-scented wind from the Malaya Mountain 75 cuckoo birds 12 Cup of Good Karma 66 Cupid 40 Cupid’s arrows 39 D dangers of the Kaliyuga 22 deer-musk 40 demigods 16 dense secluded Nikunja 25 Dheerasameer 49 Diva 15 Doe-Eyed One 61 E ear-ornament 22 erect stamens of the saffron flowers 9 171 171 F Fever of Kamadeva 110 Fifth Note 14 Fruits of the Tala Palm 87 full-hipped Gopis 21 G Garland of Beautiful Forest Flowers 75 goose bumps 22 Gopis 20 H Himalayas 17 his melodious flute 15 Holy Place of Pilgrimage of Kamadeva 48 horde of wild elephants in rut 77 hordes of Bumblebees obsessed with honey 8 I inconceivable ways of amour 24 J Jasmin Flowers 7, 10, 12 jaws of death 9 K Kadamba Tree 22 Kaajal 81, 106 Kalashas of Kamadeva 126 Kaliyuga 22 Kamadeva 9 Kamadeva’s bow 9 Keshawa 42 Ketaki Plant 9 Khanjana Birds 113 Kimshuka Tree 9 Kunja 20, 50, 67 Kunja on the Bank of the Yamuna 30 L Land-Lotuses 96 Laxmiji 5 Leaves of the Lotus Plant 72 lightening 50 loinclothes 25 Lotus Eyes 27 Lotus with a Broken Stem 42 M Madhava 40 Madhavika 10 Mala 95 172 172 Mala of precious gems 72 Malatii 10 Malaya Mountain 8, 39 Manifesto of Love 81 Many-Branched Tree of Kamedeva 82 Marakata Gems 72 Most Glorious Theme of Meditation 5 N Nandamaharaj 5 nectar 40 Nikunja 5, 107, 115 P Paatal Trees 9 passionate Fifth Note 14 past good karma 50 peacock feathers 21 planet Rahu 40 Puutanaa 82 R Raasa Dance 21 Radha’s Companion-Sakhi 7 Rahu 40 Rati Devi 72 rising ramparts 22 rows of Swans 50 S saffron ooty 5 Sakhi 7 Sandalwood Tilak 22, 114 sandalwood trees on the Malaya Mountain 17 Secret Notes of Invitation 49 shark 22 sharks that she imagines on your flag 40 Shiliimukha and Paatal Trees 9 Shringara Rasa 130 Siren 15 Sister of the God of Death 77 Slender-Waisted Radha 95 Stems of the Lotus Flower 72 T Tamal Trees 5 tender bamboo shoots 52 Tilak 22 Tilak of Deer Musk 129 tiny fragrant star-like flowers 8 173 173 V various texts on the science of conjugal union 26 Vasanta 7, 12 very confidential bowers at the Kunjas 8 Vraja 24 Vrindavan 10 W waistband 52 wet Lotus Leaves 39 Wicked Younger Brother of Balarama 72 wind from the Malaya Mountain 17 Y Yamuna 10, 77 Yellow garments 14 yellow silk dhoti 112 yellow silks 22 174 174 The Distant Drummer imprint Five years ago a group of young India-lovers hailing from historical Leipzig in Germany discovered Artist Dr.Mumbiram of India whose Personalist Art has already been a proven German Favorite for the past twenty-five years. This group calling itself “Distant Drummer Publishing and Holding Company” went on to support the efforts of Mumbiram&Party to lay the groundwork of the ambitious task of reviving the classical Rasa Theory of aesthetics of Art and Literature. Leipzig University once had a strong Indology Department. (Max Mueller first studied Sanskrit at Leipzig.) Leipzig also once had led in Book Printing. Forces of war and politics had reduced all that to naught. Distant Drummer represents a glorious revival of erudite German interest in treasures of classical India. Zestful collaboration between Distant Drummer and Mumbiram&Party has produced bounties beyond everyone’s wildest dreams. A new aesthetic movement is taking shape under the banner of Rasa Renaissance. Five years on, Distant Drummer is holding valuable rights to Books, Exhibitions, Catalogues, series of Collected FolkTales, Poster campaigns and reproductions of Rasa Art and Literature. With intelligently designed promotional campaigns for its debut, Distant Drummer stands in an enviable position. Distant Drummer now will work under the wings of a large Publishing House, with a global reach, as an imprint. Distant Drummer has its own editorial board and is dedicated to the publishing of Rasa Classics and Rasa Art in a contemporary popular avatar that has Universal Appeal. 175 175 176 176 The Original Masterpieces of Personalist Art appearing in this ‘High Five Ensemble’ are with proud individual collectors or with Distant Drummer. Distant Drummer maintains an extensive catalogue of a large body of Mumbiram’s original works. 177 177 These books are in the same league of classic first-ever translations such as Sir Richard Burton´s renderings of Arabian Nights and Kama Sutra, Sir Edwin Arnold´s Light of Asia and Fitzgerald’s renditions of Omar Khayyam´s Rubaiyat. The first four books of the High Five of Love, which are celebrated Indian Classics, set the mood and provide the context for Mumbiram´s path-breaking original work of theophily: Deluges of Ecstasy. Deluges of Ecstasy are very contemporary outpourings of ecstatic delusions in an intimate passionate Love Affair in the lofty Prema Vivarta Mood. It is an original contemporary work by Mumbiram that was composed and compiled during Mumbiram’s 12 year sojourn of North America. It has been a work ahead of its times by a quarter of a century. It is an American Classic. One cannot help feeling that here Mumbiram is fulfilling Walt Whitman´s Passage to India. The poet who will arrive after all the explorations and discoveries have been accomplished has arrived. He is offering a universal paradigm of Man-God rapport that can unite us all. Each one of these books has the remarkable quality that you open it anywhere and you are instantly transported to the world of a classical rustic romance that is simultaneously innocent and passionate, like nature itself. They gracefully rise above language and culture. They speak the universal language of Love. Mumbiram&Party have presented here books that may become the basis for a popular movement of Universal Mutual Attraction that is against nobody. Here we have the prime proponent of an artistic movement matching his painterly virtuosity with his literary flourish. The world of Contemporary Art is in chaos and confusion. It has worked itself into terrain that is meaninglessly abstract, impersonal and, at best, conceptual. It has neither any Romance nor any Rasa. These Unabashed Presentations of Sanskrit Love Classics rekindle our hopes for an aesthetic Renaissance The entire English-reading fraternity stands to benefit from these “High Five of Love”. They add a New Dimension for the English Language. They offer a New Philosophy of Comparative Religion. They present a Universal Paradigm of Divine Love. For admirers of Krishna it is a Contemporary Incarnation of the classical Bhagavat Dharma where the joy, the beauty and the essential equality of all living entities shines gloriously through all the confusion of the material world.
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