The great authority Śukadeva Gosvāmī remarks that Kṛṣṇa almost always passed His time with Rukmiṇī, and Rukmiṇī was a bit proud to be so fortunate that Kṛṣṇa never left her even for a moment. Kṛṣṇa, however, does not like any of His devotees to be proud. As soon as a devotee becomes so, by some tactic He cuts down that pride. In this case also, Kṛṣṇa said many things which were hard for Rukmiṇī to hear. She could only conclude that although she was proud of her position, Kṛṣṇa could be separated from her at any moment.
Rukmiṇī was conscious that her husband was not an ordinary human being. He was the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the master of the three worlds. By the way He was speaking, she was afraid of being separated from the Lord, for she had never heard such harsh words from Kṛṣṇa before. Thus she became perplexed with fear of separation, and her heart began to palpitate. Without replying to a word of Kṛṣṇa’s statement, she simply cried in great anxiety, as if drowning in an ocean of grief. She silently scratched the floor with her toenails, which reflected reddish light on the floor. The tears from her eyes mixed with the black cosmetic ointment from her eyelids and dropped down, washing the kuṅkuma and saffron from her breasts. Choked up on account of great anxiety, unable to speak even a word, she kept her head downward and remained standing just like a stick. Due to extremely painful fear and lamentation, she lost all her powers of reason and became weak, her body losing so much weight that the bangles on her wrists became slack. The cāmara with which she was serving Kṛṣṇa immediately fell from her hand. Her brain and memory became puzzled, and she lost consciousness. The nicely combed hair on her head scattered here and there, and she fell down straight, like a banana tree cut down by a whirlwind.
Lord Kṛṣṇa immediately realized that Rukmiṇī had not taken His words in a joking spirit. She had taken them very seriously, and in her extreme anxiety over immediate separation from Him, she had fallen into this condition. Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa is naturally very affectionate toward His devotees, and when He saw Rukmiṇī’s condition, His heart immediately softened. At once He became merciful to her. The relationship between Rukmiṇī and Kṛṣṇa was like that between Lakṣmī and Nārāyaṇa; therefore, Kṛṣṇa appeared before Rukmiṇī in His four-handed manifestation of Nārāyaṇa. He got down from the bedstead, lifted her up by her hands and, placing His cooling hands on her face, smoothed the scattered hair on her head. Lord Kṛṣṇa dried the wet breasts of Rukmiṇījī with His hand. Understanding the seriousness of Rukmiṇī’s love for Him, He embraced her to His chest.
The Supreme Personality is expert in putting a thing reasonably for one’s understanding, and thus He tried to retract all that He had said before. He is the only resort for all devotees, and so He knows very well how to satisfy His pure devotees. Kṛṣṇa understood that Rukmiṇī could not follow the statements He had made in a joking way. To counteract her confusion, He spoke as follows.
“My dear daughter of King Vidarbha, My dear Rukmiṇī, please do not misunderstand Me. Don’t be unkind to Me like this. I know that you are sincerely and seriously attached to Me; you are My eternal companion. The words which have affected you so much are not factual. I wanted to irritate you a bit, and I was expecting you to make counteranswers to those joking words. Unfortunately, you have taken them seriously; I am very sorry for it. I expected that your red lips would tremble in anger when you heard My statement and that you would chastise Me in many words. O perfection of love, I never expected that your condition would be like this. I expected that you would cast your unblinking glance upon Me in retaliation and that I would thus be able to see your beautiful face in that angry mood.