Radha-Krishna, the Divine Couple (Part 5)

Radha-Krishna, Braj, the cow-herding pastimes, and other elements form the Indian revelation of that ideal life. Now that Radha-Krishnaism has spread throughout the world, we need to divest it of cultural accretions and re-imagine it in our own indigenous contexts. This process may take generations, and it will always continue. God-dess realization entails a dynamic process. God-dess and her-his play constantly expand in new ways, and God-dess responds according to the mood in which the devotee approaches; therefore, it is not a closed, fixed system.

God-dess craves the love of devotees free of all constraints of decorum based on majesty in their speech and behavior. Their love is that of equals and all parties forget divinity as they engage in amorous pastimes. Their divine love remains ever fresh and enjoyable. God-dess, though eternally free, becomes eternally captive in such devotees’ hearts. An extremely intimate, loving relationship exists between God-dess and such devotees.

God-dess and the devotees unite in love, but this does not imply a philosophically old-fashioned monistic union in which the devotees completely lose their own identity. Yet, absorbed in each other’s love and lost in each other’s thoughts there is scarcely room in their hearts for thought of anything else. God-dess and the devotee become mutually subservient to each other and surrender their freedom to each other. The pure divine love of the devotee controls God-dess.

God-dess acts to make the devotees happy, as is natural in love. God-dess loves the devotees as much as they love him-her and always tries to reciprocate and love even more. God-dess manifests different forms to satisfy the devotees’ different tastes for enjoying devotion. God-dess loves the devotees in the same manner in which they love. Visually speaking, he-she lives in the devotee’s heart in the form the devotee meditates upon. She-he bestows divine love upon the devotee from within and without. The devotee enjoys the bliss of closeness to God-dess and engages in loving play. The unlimited varieties of loving relationships with innumerable devotees give supreme enjoyment for God-dess. All religions contribute to God-dess’ enjoyment by increasing the varieties of relationship.

Radha-Krishna are supremely enjoyable due to the sweet taste of their love. Sweetness constitutes the essence of their nature. Scriptures describe both the sweetness and majesty of God-dess, but sweetness alone exists as the essence of perfection. God-dess’ sweetness manifests from the blissful, loving energy personified as Radha who governs Krishna. A ruler may make a person captive by power, but only their sweet behavior can win the person’s heart and soul. Sweetness is God-dess’ intrinsic quality, and it most fully manifests in the love of Radha-Krishna.

Love is by nature imperfect because it is never satisfied with itself. The more love we possesses, the more we long for it. Divine love’s dynamic nature causes it to grow and overreach itself.  Since God-dess’ love is limitless, his-her hunger for love is also limitless. To satisfy this limitless hunger, God-dess bestows devotion to have more persons to love and be loved by. This explains the underlying reason for creation.

God-dess experiences bliss by mercifully imparting devotion like a mother nursing her child. God-dess’ mercy blesses the giver and receiver. God-dess is very dynamic. Though perfect in all respects, she-he grows and changes by enjoying relationships. His-her every act of mercy is an act of self-fulfillment and self-transcendent bliss.

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