Thus she (Rukmini) desired to dedicate her life to observing severe austerities and penances, such as fasting and going without bodily comforts

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Expressions researched:
"Thus she desired to dedicate her life to observing severe austerities and penances, such as fasting and going without bodily comforts"

Other Books by Srila Prabhupada

Krsna, The Supreme Personality of Godhead

Thus she desired to dedicate her life to observing severe austerities and penances, such as fasting and going without bodily comforts. If it were not possible in this lifetime to gain Kṛṣṇa’s favor by these activities, she was prepared to die from such austerities and to undergo similar difficulties lifetime after lifetime. In the Bhagavad-gītā it is said that pure devotees of the Lord execute devotional service with great determination.

Rukmiṇī’s marriage with Śiśupāla was already settled; therefore she suggested that Kṛṣṇa kidnap her so that this might be changed. This sort of marriage, in which the girl is kidnapped by force, is known as rākṣasa and is practiced among kṣatriyas, or men with an administrative, martial spirit. Because her marriage was already arranged to take place the next day, Rukmiṇī suggested that Kṛṣṇa come there incognito to kidnap her and then fight with Śiśupāla and his allies like the King of Magadha. Knowing that no one could conquer Kṛṣṇa, who would certainly emerge victorious, she addressed Him as Ajita, “the unconquerable Lord.”

Rukmiṇī told Kṛṣṇa not to be concerned that the fighting would take place within the palace and that many of her family members, including other women, might thus be wounded or even killed. As the king of a country thinks of diplomatic ways to achieve his object, Rukmiṇī, being the daughter of a king, was diplomatic in suggesting how this unnecessary and undesirable killing could be avoided. She explained that it was the custom of her family to visit the temple of goddess Durgā, their family deity, before a marriage. (The kṣatriya kings were mostly staunch Vaiṣṇavas, worshiping Lord Viṣṇu in either the Rādhā-Kṛṣṇa or Lakṣmī-Nārāyaṇa form; still, for their material welfare they used to worship goddess Durgā. They never made the mistake, however, of accepting the demigods as the Supreme Lord on the level of viṣṇu-tattva, as do some less intelligent men.) To avoid the unnecessary killing of her relatives, Rukmiṇī suggested that it would be easiest for Him to kidnap her while she was either going from the palace to the temple or else returning home.

She also explained to Kṛṣṇa why she was anxious to marry Him, even though her marriage was to take place with Śiśupāla, who was also qualified, being the son of a great king. Rukmiṇī said that she did not think anyone was greater than Kṛṣṇa, not even Lord Śiva, who is known as Mahādeva, the greatest of all demigods. Lord Śiva also seeks the pleasure of Lord Kṛṣṇa in order to be delivered from his entanglement in the quality of ignorance within the material world. Although Lord Śiva is the greatest of all great souls, mahātmās, he keeps on his head the purifying water of the Ganges, which emanates from a hole in this material universe made by the toe of Lord Viṣṇu. Lord Śiva is in charge of the material quality of ignorance, and to keep himself in a transcendental position he always meditates on Lord Viṣṇu, or Kṛṣṇa, and always tries to purify himself with the water of the Ganges. Therefore Rukmiṇī knew very well that obtaining the favor of Kṛṣṇa was not easy. Since even Lord Śiva must purify himself for this purpose, surely it would be difficult for Rukmiṇī, who was only the daughter of a kṣatriya king. Thus she desired to dedicate her life to observing severe austerities and penances, such as fasting and going without bodily comforts. If it were not possible in this lifetime to gain Kṛṣṇa’s favor by these activities, she was prepared to die from such austerities and to undergo similar difficulties lifetime after lifetime. In the Bhagavad-gītā it is said that pure devotees of the Lord execute devotional service with great determination. Such determination, as exhibited by Rukmiṇī-devī, is the only price for purchasing Kṛṣṇa’s favor. One should be strongly determined in Kṛṣṇa consciousness, and that is the way to ultimate success.

After relaying Rukmiṇī-devī’s statement to Kṛṣṇa, the brāhmaṇa said, “My dear Kṛṣṇa, chief of the Yadu dynasty, I have brought this confidential message for You from Rukmiṇī; now it is placed before You for Your consideration. After due deliberation, You may act as You please, but if You want to do something, You must do it immediately. There is not much time left for action.”