May Yamuna, the daughter of the sun, whose waters are muddied and scented by the musk and vermilion that washes from Radha and Krishna’s bodies as they play their expansive water sports in them, who blissfully and mildly smiles at the Divine Couple with her smile of foam, and softly splashes them with the hands of her waves, ever expand my happiness!
Vraja-vilāsa-stava, verse 35:
pramodāt tau pheṇa-smitam uditam ūrmi-sphuṭakara-
śriyā siñcantīva prathayatu sukhaṁ nas taraṇijā
Stavāmṛta Kaṇā Vyākhyā: In this verse Das Goswami praises the most fortunate daughter of the sun Sri Yamuna.
go-gopa-gopikā-saṅge yatra krīḍati kaṁsahā
yamunā-jala-kallole sadā krīḍati mādhavaḥ
Because the verb krīḍati is in the present tense, it proves the eternal nature of Sri Krishna’s pastimes in the Yamuna. The holy dhāma is transcendental, beyond the mundane creation, devoid of any material element, all-pervading, omnipresent and great – just like Krishna’s body: sarvaga ananta vibhu kṛṣṇa tanu sama (Caitanya-caritāmṛta)
Actually the Yamuna is not a common river filled with ordinary water, which is one of the five material elements. She carries transcendental nectar of the divine realm. The Lord says in the Bṛhad-gautamīya Tantra:
kālindīyaṁ suṣumnākhyā paramāmṛta-vāhinī
This Yamuna, the carrier of the greatest nectar, is always absorbed in the mellows of the ecstatic service of Sri Krishna and exists in Vrindavan as the object of his great love. From the words of the Sri Vrajasundarīs we also learn how the Yamuna and other rivers express their sweet love for Krishna:
āliṅgana-sthagitam ūrmi-bhujair murārer
gṛhnanti pāda-yugalaṁ kamalopahārāḥ
Just as the loving devotees perform Krishna bhajan themselves and thus increase the bhakti of the other devotees who have taken shelter of them, similarly Yamunaji herself relishes the bliss of Krishna’s service and in this way also increasing the devotion of the devotees. Srila Rupa Goswamipada has written:
māṁ punātu sarvadāravinda-bandhu-nandinī
Vrindavan’s Yamuna River is Krishna’s most delightful playground, and it is impossible to compare her wealth of natural beauty to anything.
From the descriptions in Gopāla-campū we learn that Sri Nanda and the Vrajavasis decided to abandon Gokula when they saw that different demons and monsters were constantly threatening Krishna. When they came to the bank of the Yamuna in Sri Vrindavan, the beauty of Vrindavan attracted Sri Krishna’s heart even more.
When Nanda and the other cowherds came to Vrindavan in their bullock-carts they were very eager to see the forest’s beauty. Krishna and Balaram eagerly jumped from the ox-cart and loudly called their friends. They ran forward and plunged into the ocean of Vrindavan’s natural beauty, looking left and right in blissful astonishment as they wandered around.
The sacred forest responded by showing signs of ecstasy upon being touched by Sri Krishna’s lotus feet. This is only relishable for the rasika devotees when it is revealed through the poetic descriptions of an insightful devotee poet:
romṇām utthitam aṅkure ca kavitaṁ yogyān nidānādṛte
tan mithyā yadi kṛṣṇa-saṅgati-vaśāt tasmins tathā varṇyate
satyaṁ tarhi sadāpi tat tad akhilaṁ yasmād darīdṛśyate
In his paugaṇḍa-age (5-10 years) Sri Krishna chose the most enchanting bank of the Yamuna to have picnics with his friends. This is described in the Bhāgavata:
In Krishna’s kaiśora-age (10-15) the bank of the Yamuna was the place where the crown-jewel of all of Krishna’s pastimes, the Rāsa-līlā, took place.
After performing the most rasika Rāsa-līlā on the bank of the Yamuna, the Divine Couple would play in her waters with the other gopis, like a mad king-elephant with his queen, until the water of the Yamuna became clouded and scented with the vermilion, musk and sandalwood that washed off their bodies.
With a most blissful heart, the Yamuna attended the water sports of the Divine Couple and their gopi friends and sprinkled their bodies, using her wave hands to splash them, and smiling with the frothing foam. Raghunath Das Goswami says: “May that daughter of the sun, Kālindī, increase my wealth of ecstatic love.”
Shripad Prabodhananda Saraswati has written:
snāyaṁ snāyam aho kudehaja-malaṁ jahyaṁ kadā nirmalaḥ
yamunāya jala keli korile ārambha
kasturī kuṅkuma candana duhuṅ aṅga hoite;
skhalita hoiyā paḍe jala pravāhete
ānande phenā rūpa mṛdu manda hāsye;
taraṅga rūpa hasta dvārā atīva ullāse
śrī rādhā govinde yiho abhiṣeka kore;
tapana tanayā śrī kālindī nāma dhare
bhāgyavatī pravāhiṇī sei to yamunā;
sukha sampad vṛddhi koro ei to prārthanā
Commentary of Sri Radha Kund Mahant, Pandit Sri Ananta Das Babaji Maharaj is named Stavāmṛta Kaṇā Vyākhyā (a drop of the nectar of Stavāvalī), and was published in Gaurābda 503 (1989 A.D.) from Sri Krishna Chaitanya Shastra Mandir, Vrajananda Ghera, PO Radhakunda (district Mathura), U.P., India.
Devotional songs in Bengali that follow each commentary were composed by Dr. Haripada Sheel.
© Translated by Advaita dāsa in 1994
Source: Tarun Govinda Das, Flowing Nectar Stream blog.