Gopala-campu (Kusakratha Dasa)

 

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In the Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Srila Krsnadasa Kaviraja Gosvami wrote: “ Sri Rupa Gosvami’s nephew, Srila Jiva Gosvami, has compiled so many books on devotional service that there is no counting them. The most famous and formidable transcendental literature is the book named Gopala-campu. In this book the eternal pastimes of the Lord are established, and the transcendental mellows enjoyed in Vrndavana are completely described.”

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In a purport of Sri Caitanya-caritamrta, Srila Prabhupada wrote: “In his Anubhasya, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura gives the following information about the Gopala-campu is divided into two parts. The first part is called the eastern wave, and the second part is called the northern wave. In the first part there are thirty-three supplications and in the second part thirty-seven supplications.

“In the first part, completed in 1510 Sakabda (A.D. 1588), the following subject matters are discussed: (1) Vrndavana and Goloka; (2) the killing of the Putana demon, the gopis’ returning home under the instructions of mother Yasoda, the bathing of Lord Krsna and Balarama, snigdha-kantha and madhu-mantha; (3) the dream of mother Yasoda; (4) the Janmastami ceremony; (5) the meeting between Nanda Maharaja and Vasudeva, and the killing of the Putana demon; (6) the pastimes of awakening from bed, the deliverance of the demon Sakta, and the name-giving ceremony; (7) the killing of the Trnavarta demon, Lord Krsna’s eating dirt, Lord Krsna’s childish naughtiness, and Lord Krsna as a thief; (8) churning of the yogurt, Krsna’s drinking from the breast of other Yasoda, the breaking of the yogurt pot, Krsna bound with ropes, the deliverance of the two brothers (Yamalarjuna) and the lamentation of mother Yasoda; (9) entering Sri Vrndavana; (10) the killing of Vatsasura, Bakasura and Vyomasura; (11) the killing of Aghasura and the bewilderment of Lord Brahma; (12) the tending of the cows in the forest; (13) taking care of the cows and chastising the Kaliya serpent; (14) the killing of Gardabhasura (the ass demon), and the praise of Krsna; (15) the previous attraction of the gopis; (16) the killing of Pralambasura and the eating of the forest fire; (17) the gopis’ attempt to approach Krsna; (18) the lifting of Govardhana Hill; (19) bathing Krsna with milk; (20) the return of Nanda Maharaja from the custody of Varuna and the vision of Goloka Vrndavana by the gopas; (21) the performance of the rituals in Katyayani-vrata and the worship of the goddess Durga; (22) the begging of food from the wives of the brahmanas performing sacrifices; (23) the meeting of Krsna and the gopis; (24) Krsna’s enjoying the company of the gopis, the disappearance of Radha and Krsna from the scene, and the search for Them by the gopis; (25) the reappearance of Krsna; (26) the determination of the gopis; (27) pastimes in the waters of the Yamuna; (28) the deliverance of Nanda Maharaja from the clutches of the serpent; (29) various pastimes in solitary places; (30) the killing of Sankhacuda and the Hori; (31) the killing of Aristasura; (32) the killing of the Kesi demon; (33) the appearance of Sri Narada Muni and a description of the year in which the book was completed.

“In the second part, known as Uttara-campu, the following subject matters are discussed: (1) attraction for Vrajabhumi; (2) the cruel activities of Akrura; (3) Krsna’s departure for Mathura; (4) a description of the city of Mathura; (5) the killing of Kamsa; (6) Nanda Maharaja’s separation from Krsna and Balarama; (7) Nanda Maharaja’s entrance into Vrndavana without Krsna and Balarama; (8) the studies of Krsna and Balarama; (9) how the son of the teacher of Krsna and Balarama was returned; (10) Uddhava’s visit to Vrndavana; (11) Radharani’s talking with the messenger bumblebee; (12) the return of Uddhava from Vrndavana; (13) the binding of Jarasandha; (14) the killing of the yavana Jarasandha; (15) the marriage of Balarama; (16) the marriage of Rukmini; (17) seven marriages; (18) the killing of Narakasura, the taking of the parijata flower from heaven and Krsna’s marriage to 16, 000 princesses; (19) victory over Banasura; (20) a description of Balarama’s return to Vraja; (21) the killing of Paundraka (the imitation Visnu); (22) the killing of Dvivida and thoughts of Hastinapura; (23) departure for Kuruksetra; (24) how the residents of Vrndavana and Dvaraka met at Kuruksetra; (25) Krsna’s consultation with Uddhava; (26) the deliverance of the king; (27) the performance of the Rajasuya sacrifice; (28) the killing of Salva; (29) Krsna’s considering returning to Vrndavana; (30) Krsna’s revisiting Vrndavana; (31) the adjustment of obstructions by Srimati Radharani and others; (32) everything completed; (33) the residence of Radha and Madhava; (34) decorating Srimati Radharani and Krsna; (35) the marriage ceremony of Srimati Radharani and Krsna; (36) the meeting of Srimati Radharani and Krsna; and (37) entering Goloka.

It is commonly said that Jiva Gosvami did not like the thought of parakiya-rasa and for that reason wrote about the marriage of Radha and Krsna. However, this misconception is dispelled by Srila Prabhupada in another purport of Sri Caitanya-caritamrta: “According to another accusation, Srila Jiva Gosvami did not approve of the principles of the parakiya-rasa of Vraja-dhama and therefore supported svakiya-rasa, showing that Radha and Krsna are eternally married. Actually, when Jiva Gosvami was alive, some of his followers disliked the parakiya-rasa of the gopis. Therefore Srila Jiva Gosvami, for their spiritual benefit, supported svakiya-rasa, for he could understand that sahajiyas would otherwise exploit the parakiya-rasa, as they are actually doing at the present time.

This edition is translated by Kusakratha Dasa and edited by Purnaprajna Dasa.

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