I’m tied with the ropes of material nature, so some Krishna Leelas attract me more than others. To those who are completely drowned in His pure love, all His Leelas are ecstatic. Damodar Leela and the Leela when Gopis experience separation from Krishna resonate deep in my heart. Damodar Leela to me is the starting point of our spiritual journeys and the Gopis’ separation’s bliss the ultimate reality of all realities.
Krishna lovingly agrees to get tied up with the rope of Yashoda mai’s love and becomes Damodar. She joins one rope after another but the rope is always two-finger short until Krishna bestows His grace. Krishna can be tied up only on His own will. But His will hinges on intensity of our efforts and sincerity of our refuge in Him. He, the supreme person, wants us to make Him the centre of all our activities. He wants us to serve our hearts to him on the platter of devotion.
Taking complete shelter in Him is the only thing we are born to do. All other karmas are complex algorithms to churn out the three ropes of material nature that keep us imprisoned in the creation of His shadowy energy. The supreme knower Krishna knows that our efforts to drown in pure love can never be complete, but He is attracted by our sincerity. He showers His mercy when the intention behind our efforts is purely to Krishnanize our lives. He likes our intentions to be intensified with the spirit of refuge that only He can offer.
He is hungry for our love, but what are we hungry for? In materially conditional state, we are after artificial love which is heightened from time to time by the abuse of the stuff made of matter, be it
flesh, or flashy things. When life revolves around gross things or subtle enjoyments of ego, a vacuum is born in the heart and makes the heart–which is originally the seat of love–the shallowest place ever possible. This vacuum creates a perverted sense of loneliness, or separation from that which our soul intensely desires to unite with. Unfortunately, we are unable to even acknowledge what that is, rather who that is. This is perverted separation.
Our experience of separation is opposite to the separation that Gopis experience at the night of Rasa dance when the moon of Sharad Poornima glows in the velvet black sky. In their state of separation they are transcendentally knowledgeable about the Absolute Truth. They want to shower their love on Krishna. Their separation from Krishna heightens their love for Him. For them, love means pleasing Krishna. They don’t yearn to receive love by borrowing, begging, or stealing in the perverted sense of the material world. Gopis want to give it to the One from whom the rivers of pure love flow to the all creations temporary or eternal. Srimad Bhagavatam says just like water poured in the roots of a tree nourishes all the branches, leaves, flowers, and fruits of the tree, the pure love of Krishna makes us compassionate to the entire creation because all lives, animate or inanimate exist in Him, and due to Him.
In Gopis’ divine separation nurtures the eternal bliss that all the spiritualists of all the sects are after. Krishna gives Gopis a heightened experience of bliss even in separation. And we, by complicating our lives with temporary and gross love, experience perverted separation even when there is a possibility of momentary happiness. Our feelings of separation; of loneliness drive us to create impersonal lives caged in the virtual realities of gadgets and drowned in the liquor of false concepts of love and truth. Through passionate attachments and dry detachments we try to fill vacuums in our hearts. Both are unnatural to the soul because the eternal nature of the soul is to flower in love of its creator, Krishna. A screw has no value if it’s not serving the purpose it’s designed for. What’s the worth of this tiny soul whose size is 10000th of the tip of hair, if it is not united to its beloved?
To replete gopis with His ecstatic love, He reconfigures the timezone of Vrindavan, so the night of Sharad Poornima becomes equal to a year of Brahmaloka. Krishna can go to any extent to reciprocate pure love of His gopis. Any extent! But we are after flesh and flashy things. We push Krishna outside not only from the center of our lives, but from the circumference, too. So the cause of all causes, Krishna, waits for us to return to Him; to return Home. The unconquerable Krishna lets us use our freewill although He can change our hearts in a moment immeasurable on the scale of any time zone.
Damodar leela urges us to make sincere efforts toward pure love which can be experienced only by being enjoyed by Krishna. The quantum leap from the two-finger short rope to the rope of love—the Rasa of
divine separation– is possible only in this age. All it takes is to absorb ourselves in Krishna through His holy names and by singing His glories. The ropes of material nature begin to burn when we take the first baby step toward Krishna. And then comes the golden rope of love in bounty and following this rope Krishna comes to us.