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Nectar of Instruction
Why is Rādhā-kuṇḍa so exalted? The lake is so exalted because it belongs to Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī, who is the most beloved object of Śrī Kṛṣṇa. Among all the gopīs, She is the most beloved. Similarly, Her lake, Śrī Rādhā-kuṇḍa, is also described by great sages as the lake that is as dear to Kṛṣṇa as Rādhā Herself. Indeed, Kṛṣṇa's love for Rādhā-kuṇḍa and Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī is the same in all respects. Rādhā-kuṇḍa is very rarely attained, even by great personalities fully engaged in devotional service, not to speak of ordinary devotees who are only engaged in the practice of vaidhī bhakti.It is stated that a devotee will at once develop pure love of Kṛṣṇa in the wake of the gopīs if he once takes a bath in Rādhā-kuṇḍa. Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī recommends that even if one cannot live permanently on the banks of Rādhā-kuṇḍa, he should at least take a bath in the lake as many times as possible. This is a most important item in the execution of devotional service. Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura writes in this connection that Śrī Rādhā-kuṇḍa is the most select place for those interested in advancing their devotional service in the wake of the lady friends (sakhīs) and confidential serving maids (mañjarīs) of Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī. Living entities who are eager to return home to the transcendental kingdom of God, Goloka Vṛndāvana, by means of attaining their spiritual bodies (siddha-deha) should live at Rādhā-kuṇḍa, take shelter of the confidential serving maids of Śrī Rādhā and under their direction engage constantly in Her service. This is the most exalted method for those engaged in devotional service under the protection of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. In this connection Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura writes that even great sages and great devotees like Nārada and Sanaka do not get an opportunity to come to Rādhā-kuṇḍa to take their baths. What, then, to speak of ordinary devotees? If, by great fortune, one gets an opportunity to come to Rādhā-kuṇḍa and bathe even once, he can develop his transcendental love for Kṛṣṇa, exactly as the gopīs did. It is also recommended that one should live on the banks of Rādhā-kuṇḍa and should be absorbed in the loving service of the Lord. One should bathe there regularly and give up all material conceptions, taking shelter of Śrī Rādhā and Her assistant gopīs. If one is thus constantly engaged during his lifetime, after giving up the body he will return back to Godhead to serve Śrī Rādhā in the same way as he contemplated during his life on the banks of Rādhā-kuṇḍa. The conclusion is that to live on the banks of the Rādhā-kuṇḍa and to bathe there daily constitute the highest perfection of devotional service. It is a difficult position to attain, even for great sages and devotees like Nārada. Thus there is no limit to the glory of Śrī Rādhā-kuṇḍa. By serving Rādhā-kuṇḍa, one can get an opportunity to become an assistant of Śrīmatī Rādhārāṇī under the eternal guidance of the gopīs.
Conversations and Morning Walks
1976 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: Every devotee, they must follow the rules and regulations, that's all.
Devotee: And engage in practical service to Kṛṣṇa.
Prabhupāda: Yes. Guru-mukha-padma-vākya cittete kariyā aikya āra nā kariha mane āśā **. Has he taken order from Guru Mahārāja that "I am going to jump over Rādhā-kuṇḍa"? Why does he go? Daily singing, guru-mukha-padma-vākya cittete, āra nā kariha **. Why should he desire like that?
Gopāla Kṛṣṇa: There are some devotees who always want...
Prabhupāda: They are not devotees. Rascals. Don't say "some devotees." Devotees will hear: guru-mukha-padma-vākya cittete kariyā aikya āra nā kariha mane **.
Acyutānanda: They also wear the Rādhā-kuṇḍa māṭi, tilaka.
Prabhupāda: There is no harm, but they should understand what is Rādhā-kuṇḍa and how to deal with Rādhā-kuṇḍa. Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī showed how to live in Rādhā-kuṇḍa. Saṅkhyā-pūrvaka-nāma-gāna-natibhiḥ kālāvasānī-kṛtau. He was circumambulating Rādhā-kuṇḍa, falling down, making a mark. That is Rādhā-kuṇḍa vāsī. Saṅkhyā-pūrvaka-nāma-gāna-natibhiḥ. Not only counted holy names, but offering obeisances so many hundred times in... That is Rādhā-kuṇḍa. He, so much vairāgya he showed. He can take bath in the Rādhā-kuṇḍa. First of all, do this like Raghunātha dāsa Gosvāmī. Saṅkhyā-pūrvaka-nāma-gāna-natibhiḥ kālāvasānī-kṛtau nidrāhāra-vihārakādi-vijitau cātyanta-dīnau ca yau **.
Yaśomatīnandana: In other words, first one should understand Bhagavad-gītā. Then gradually the First Canto of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. Then ultimately Caitanya-caritāmṛta. Without that, simply taking Caitanya-caritāmṛta...Prabhupāda: Yes. Bhagavad-gītā is the entrance. Then Bhāgavata is graduate and Caitanya-caritāmṛta... This is the step by step. But if one is sincere everything becomes revealed. He does not commit mistake.