Sri Vidagdha-Madhava (Clever Krishna)
by Srila Rupa Goswami
Act One: Venu-nada-vilasa
Pastimes of Flute-music
sudhanam candrinam api madhurimonmada-damani
dadhana radhadi-pranaya-ghana-saraih surabhitam
pranitam te trishnam haratu-hari-lila-sikharini
May the pastimes of Sri Krishna reduce the miseries existing in the material world and nullify all unwanted desires. The pastimes of the Supreme Personality of Godhead are like sikharini, a blend of yogurt and sugar candy. They overpower the pride of even the nectar produced on the moon, for they distribute the sweet fragrance of the concentrated loving affairs of Srimati Radharani and the gopis.*
anarpita-carim cirat karunayavatirnah kalau
sampayitum unnatojjvala-rasam sva-bhaktisriyam
sada hridaya-kandare sphuratu vah saci-nandanah
May the Supreme Lord, who is known as the son of Srimati Sacidevi, be transcendentally situated in the innermost core of your heart. Resplendent with the radiance of molten gold, He has descended in the age of Kali by His causeless mercy to bestow what no incarnation has ever offered before: the most elevated mellow of devotional service, the mellow of conjugal love.*
TEXT 3 (a)
Purport by Srila Prabhupada:
"This verse also appears in Caitanya-caritamrita Adi-lila (1.4 and 3.4) In his commentary on Vidagdha-madhava, Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura remarks: maha-prabhoh sphurtim vina rasasvadananupapatter iti bhavah. Without the mercy of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, one cannot describe the pastimes of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Therefore Srila Rupa Gosvami said, vah yushmakam hridaya-guhayam saci-nandano harih pakshe, simhah sphuratu: “May Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, who is exactly like a lion that kills all the elephants of desire, be awakened within everyone's heart, for by His merciful blessings one can understand the transcedental pastimes of Krishna."*
sutradharah: alam ati-vistarena. bho bhoh. samakarnyatam. adyanam svapnantare samadishto 'smi bhaktavatarena bhagavata sri-sankaradevena yatha "aye tandava-kala-pandita. iha kila ballavi-cakra-ceto-vritti-makari-vihara-makaralayasya niravadya-venu-vadana-vidyasvadhyaya-siddhinam prathamadhyapakasya sugandhi-pushpavali-saundarya-tundilayam aravinda-bandhavanandindi-tiranta-kanana-lekhayam avalambita-matta-pums-kokila-lilasya paramananda-vardhini govardhana-nitambe sambhrita-navyambudarasya kisora-siro-maner nanda-nandanasya prema-bharakrishta-hridayo nana-dig-desatah sampratam rasika-sampradayo vrindavana-vilokanotkanthaya kesi-tirthopakanthe samiyivan. sa ca dhanyah.
Narrator: Why speak so many words? Gentlemen! Gentlemen! Please hear me! Last night Lord Siva, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who had come in the role of a devotee, spoke to me in a dream and said: "O Rupa Gosvami, O expert writer of plays, this delightful place is near Kesi-tirtha, on the slope of Govardhana hill. This grove, on the bank of the Yamuna river, is very pleasant and full of many fragrant beautiful flowers. At this moment, eager to see the forest of Vrindavana, the advanced devotees, expert at relishing the mellows of devotional service, have come here, devotees whose hearts are full of love for Nanda's son, who is the crown jewel of all youths, and who is decorated with many new lotus flowers, playful like a maddened cuckoo, the first teacher of perfect flute players, and an ocean where the sharks of the gopis' hearts play. The devotees here are all very fortunate.
TEXT 3 (b)
kritam gopi-vrindair iha bhagavato marganam abhud
ihasit kalindi-pulina-valaye rasa-rabhasah
iti srayam sravam caritam asakrid gokula-pater
luthann udbashpo 'yam katham api dinani kshapayati
“Here the gopis searched for Krishna, and here, in this circle by the Yamuna's shore, they enjoyed a great rasa dance.” Hearing and hearing these pastimes of Gokula's master, weeping, and rolling on the ground, the devotees somehow pass their days.
TEXT 4 (a)
tad idanim etasya bhakta-vrindasya mukunda-vislesheddipanena bahir bhavantah pranah kam api tasyaiva keli-sudha-kallolinim ullasayata parirakshaniya bhavata. mat-kripaiva te samagrim samagrayishyati" iti. tenadiya jagad-guror asya nidesam evanuvartishye
"Burning in separation from Lord Mukunda, these devotees are now about to give up their lives. O Rupa Gosvami, please protect them by giving them a little of the nectar river of Lord Mukunda's pastimes. My mercy will give you the power to do this." In this way Lord Siva, the spiritual master of the universe, spoke. I will now obey His order.
TEXT 4 (b)
pariparsvikah: (pravisya)- bhava, bhavata nibaddhasya vidagdha-madhava-namno navina-natakasya prayoganusarena grihita-bhumikah kusilava ranga-pravesaya tatra-bhavantam anujnapayanti.
sutradharah: marisha, nirmitah kim iti tan-nataka-paripatibhir varnika-parigrahah (kshanam vimrisya) bhavatu.
Assitant Narrator: (enters) O master, having heard the prologue of your new play, named Vidagdha-Madhava, the actors now ask permission to enter the stage.
Narrator: Dear student, Are the costumes ready? (thinks for a moment) So be it.
TEXT 4 (c)
mamasmin sandarbhe yad api kavita natilalita
mudam dhasyanty asyam tad api hari-gandhad budha-ganah
sudhih ko va kaupir api namita-murdha na pibati
Although the poetry in my play is not very beautiful, the wise will take delight in it, for it bears the scent of Lord Hari. What wise man will not bow his head and respectfully drink well-water that has washed a Salagrama-sila?
TEXT 5 (a)
pariparsvikah bhava, ranga-lakshmi-kausala-stutibhir eva sabhyan abhyarthayamahe, yad ami vidyadibhir devan api tan upalabdhum utsahante kim uta natan asman
Assistant Narrator: O master, please give us beautiful and elegant speeches, for this audience is so learned it will criticize the demigods, what to speak of us actors.
TEXT 5 (b)
sutradharah: marisha, kritam etaya vrithopacara-caryaya, yatah
Narrator: Dear student, why talk in this frivolous way? After all. . .
TEXT 5 (c)
aprekshya klamam atmane vidadhati pritya paresham priyam
lajjante duritodyamad iva nija-stotranubandhad api
vidya-vitta-kuladibhis ca yad ami yanti kraman namratam
ramya kapi satam iyam vijayate naisargiki prakriya
Ignoring their own welfare, the people in this audience are concerned only for the well-being of others. Although wealthy, well-educated and born in exalted families, they are very humble. When they themselves glorified, they become embarrassed, as if they themselves had sinned. All glories to the delightful virtues of this saintly audience.
TEXT 6 (a)
(samantad avalokya, saharsam uccaih) hamho ballava-simha-priyah. bhagavad-dharmajnoshthi-gurunam api yushmakam samaksam arodhum upakramate, tad imam kshamadhvam capalarabhatim. (iti sapranamam pasyam)
(Looking at all corners of the audience, with a loud and cheerful voice) O dear devotees of Sri Krishna, the lion of gopas! Beginning to walk on the path of the shameless, a certain actor now wishes to say something to you, the spiritual masters wise in the true religion of worshiping the Lord. Please forgive this rash and arrogant person. (He bows down and then looks in a certain direction.)
TEXT 6 (b)
abhivyakta mattah prakriti-laghu-rupad api budha
vidhatri siddharthan hari-guna-mayi vah kritir iyam
pulindenapy agnih kim u samidham -unmathya janito
hiranya-sreninam apaharati nantah-kalushatam
O learned devotees, I am by nature ignorant and low, yet even though it is from me that Vidagdha-Madhava has come, it is filled with descriptions of the transcendental attributes of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Therefore, will not such literature bring about the attainment of the highest goal of life? Although its wood may be ignited by a low-class man, fire can nevertheless purify gold. Although I am very low by nature, this book may help cleanse the dirt from within the hearts of the golden devotees.*
TEXT 7 (a)
tad idanim abhishta devam bhagavantam anusmritya nritya-madhurim ullasayami. (ity anjalim baddhva)
Now, remembering the worshipable Supreme Personality of Godhead, I will show the sweetness of this drama. (He folds his hands.)
TEXT 7 (b)
sanatana-tanuh sada mayi tanotu tushtim prabhuh
May the Supreme Lord, whose form is eternal, who is supremely sweet and charming, who stays in the glorious forests and pavilions of Vrindavana forest, who is a limitless ocean of mercy, and whose heart delights in His Vraja pastimes, always be pleased with me.
Note: Deliberately ambiguous, this verse may also be interpreted as a prayer to Srila Sanatana Gosvami. Thus it may also mean:
May my spiritual master, Srila Sanatana Gosvami, who is graceful and charming, who stays in the glorious forests and pavilions of Vrindavana forest, who is a limitless ocean of mercy, and whose heart delights in Lord Krishna's Vraja pastimes, always be pleased with me.
TEXT 8 (a)
pariparsvikah: bhava, pasya.
Assistant Narrator: Master, look!
TEXT 8 (b)
bhaktanam udagad anargala-dhiyam vargo nisargojjvalah
silaih pallavitah sa ballava-vadhu-bandho prabandho 'py asau
lebhe catvaratam ca tandava-vidher vrindatavi-garbha-bhur
manye mad-vidha-punya-mandala-paripako 'yam unmilati
The devotees now present are constantly thinking of the Supreme Lord and are therefore highly advanced. This work named Vidadgha-Madhava depicts the characteristic pastimes of Lord Krishna with decorations of poetic ornaments. And the inner grounds of the forest of Vrindavana provide a suitable platform for the dancing of Krishna with the gopis. Therefore I think that the pious activities of persons like us, who have tried to advance in devotional service have now attained maturity.*
TEXT 9 (a)
tat tvarasva rasa-madhuri-pariveshanaya
sutradharah: marisha, nirasavali-vaimukhyad visankamano mathara ivasmi
pariparsvikah: bhava, kritam atra sankaya. yatah.
Please hurry. Distribute the nectar of Krishna's pastimes.
Narrator: Dear student, I proceed very slowly because I fear the harsh words of persons who do not like the nectar of the Lord's pastimes.
Assitant Narrator: Master, please give up this caution, because.....
TEXT 9 (b)
udasatam nama rasanabhijnah
kritau tavami rasikah sphuranti
kramelakaih kamam upekshite 'pi
pikah sukham yanti param rasale
Persons who know how to taste nectar will be delighted by your play, and persons who know nothing of nectar will ignore it. Of their own accord camels avoid the mango trees that delight the poetic pika birds.
TEXT 10 (a)
tad arabhyatam samajika-cetas-camatkaraya gandharva-brahma-vidya.
sutradharah: marisha, pasya pasya.
So the hearts of the audience will be filled with wonder, let the play begin.
Narrator: Student, look! Look!
TEXT 10 (b)
so ’yam vasanta-samayah samiyaya yasmin
purnam tam isvaram upodha-navanuragam
gudha-graha ruciraya saha radhayasau
rangaya sangamayita nisi paurnamasi
Springtime had arrived, and the full moon of that season inspired the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is complete in everything, with new attraction to meet the beautiful Srimati Radharani at night to increase the beauty of Their pastimes.*
TEXT 11 (a)
Purport by Srila Prabhupada:
Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura interprets this verse in two ways, for Lord Krishna and for Srimati Radharani. When interpreted for Krishna, the night is understood to have been a dark moon night, and when interpreted for Srimati Radharani, it is considered to have been a full moon night.
aye nartaka-samanta-sarvabhauma, katham bhavatah karnapuri-bhuta badham nigudheyam sandarbha-manjari, yad aham radhaya sardham isvaram tam sangamayishyamiti.
sutradharah: (savismayam nepathyabhimukham avalokya) aho, katham ita eva bhagavati paurnamasi. pasya pasya.
Paurnamasi: (offstage) O king of actors, how did your ear become decorated with the flower that is the secret of this drama, the secret that I will arrange the meeting of Radha and Krishna?
Narrator: (surprised, he looks offstage) Ah! Was that saintly Paurnamasi? Look! Look!
TEXT 11 (b)
vahanti kashayambaram urasi sandipani-muneh
savitri savitri-samarucir alam pandura-kaca
surarsheh sishyeyam parijanavati nandabhavanad
ito mandam mandam sphutam utajavithim pravisati
Wearing a red cloth over her breast, her hair white, splendid like Goddess Savitri, and accompanied by a friend, Paurnamasi, who is Narada's disciple and Sandipani Muni's mother, now leaves Nanda's palace and slowly walks on the street.
TEXT 11 (c)
tad avam agratah karaniyam varnikangikaram alocayavah
(iti nishkrantau) prastavana
Let us see if the actors are in their costumes.
Thus ends the prologue.